Update: Elden Ring is best on PS5 full stop.
It seems like almost the entire gaming world is currently infatuated with Elden Ring. For good reason, the latest tough-as-nails action RPG from developer FromSoftware is as engaging as it is difficult. However, if you’ve yet to jump in, you might want to consider playing on PS5 as Sony’s flagship console has a major advantage over the Xbox Series X.
While Elden Ring suffers from noticeable framerate dips on both next-gen consoles, there’s a real disparity when it comes to loading times. As highlighted in IGN’s performance review video, players on PS5 will enjoy significantly less time spent looking at loading screen tips compared to those on Xbox Series X.
If you're playing on PC, check out our Elden Ring PC issues guide and what you can do about the problems.
During IGN’s testing, the publication found that on PS5 the average loading speed was around 7 seconds, while on Xbox Series X it could take as long as 20 seconds before players were dropped back into action.
I spent my weekend diving into Elden Ring on Xbox Series X and can confirm that I experienced around 19 seconds of loading to boot the game from the main menu, and average loading speeds of 12 seconds to get back into the fray after a death.
Loading speeds of roughly 20 seconds might not sound like a particularly big deal, especially when on PS4 and Xbox One loading times could exceed a full minute in some large open world games, however Elden Ring is a game where death is a constant. Unlike say Dying Light 2 Stay Human, where you could conceivably go lengthy stretches without seeing a single loading screen, in Elden Ring you’ll die frequently, and upon each death you'll be greeted with another period of loading.
Each death being paired with 20 seconds of loading feels like an extra punishment on Xbox Series X. This loading discrepancy becomes a real pain when you’re attempting to beat a challenging boss and dying at a regular clip. It’s also a factor when fast travelling across the map, which is something you’ll also do regularly in Elden Ring.
This difference in loading speeds really showcases the power of the PS5’s custom SSD. The PS5 may come with less native storage space than the Xbox Series X (825GB vs 1TB), but the drive in Sony’s console can manage speeds of 5.5GB per second which is double that of Microsoft's flagship Xbox which clocks in at around 2.4GB per second.
If you’ve only access to an Xbox console, this issue is by no means a deal breaker. As noted, I’m personally exploring the Lands Between on Xbox Series X and having a blast regardless. But if you have the choice to play on PS5 you absolutely should. Right now, it definitely appears to be the superior console platform.
If you’re currently about to embark on your own Elden Ring playthrough, we’ve got a range of tips to help you survive. Also, don’t worry if you’re finding the first boss encounter a little difficult. If you can beat Elden’s Ring first boss, then you can beat the whole game. Remember, the key to overcoming a challenging Souls-like game is persistence. Also, make sure to find this hidden Game of Thrones Easter egg.