Where to find Melina and should you accept her accord in Elden Ring?

Elden Ring Melina
(Image credit: Bandai Namco)

You have to accept Melina's accord in Elden Ring if you want to level up and get your horse. While suspicion is wise in a FromSoftware game, you really have to say yes here. Because without her, you'll be cut off from some crucial tools. 

Because she won't explain clearly what the deal is, beyond taking her to the foot of Erdtree, it's easy to think you'll have a wander and see what you can suss out first in Elden Ring, before you commit. However, without her help you'll risk every rune you get as you won't be able to spend them on levelling up, and you'll have to walk everywhere without Torrent the spectral steed. It's not exactly unusual for FromSoftware to present such a critical mechanic in such un unclear way, but so early on it's easy to make a mistake. So, coming up, we'll explain everything about Melina's accord, where to find her, and what accepting her offer actually gets you. 

Should you accept Melina's accord in Elden Ring?

Embracing Fia explained

Elden Ring endings

(Image credit: FromSoftware)

Later you'll get another strange choice, about whether you want to embrace Fia for bonuses and penalties. We explain the Elden Ring hug debuff for you here!

Melina will usually appear when you stop at your third Site of Grace. Officially, according to FromSoftware's own instructions and supporting info, she appear after visiting three Sites of Grace from one of a pool of 'predetermined' sites. For most people, this will take place at the Gatefront Ruins site because of how the Guidance of Grace beams of light direct you around the world. 

When you reach your third (ish) Site of Grace, Melina will walk up and offer you 'an accord'. You, apparently, are maiden-less, and she will take on that role for you if you agree to escort her to the Erdtree. However, at this point you'll have no idea what a maiden is or does, or what the accord actually does... 

However, you really do want to say yes, as not only is Melina how you level up - appearing at Sites of Grace after you agree to help you - but she also gives you the Spectral Steed Whistle, answering the question of how to get the Elden Ring horse, Torrent. So if you don't say yes, you won't be able to spend the Runes you collect on improving your character's stats, and you'll have to walk everywhere. This won't just make things harder - if you think that's just going to be a challenge to try out - you won't be able to reach certain areas or get past some obstacles at all without Torrent. So you really, really want to say yes. 

Saying no to Melina's accord

Elden Ring Melina

(Image credit: Bandai Namco)

But what happens if you say no to Melina's accord in Elden Ring? Well, obviously there's no levelling up or horse, but the good news is you can talk to her at any time you rest, so you can reconsider. Once you've met her for the first time you'll get a dialogue option to accept her accord each time you rest at a Site of Grace, so you won't be punished long-term for refusing her.

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Leon Hurley
Managing editor for guides

I'm GamesRadar's Managing Editor for guides, which means I run GamesRadar's guides and tips content. I also write reviews, previews and features, largely about horror, action adventure, FPS and open world games. I previously worked on Kotaku, and the Official PlayStation Magazine and website.