Elden Ring's PvP Colosseum has brought out the worst, weirdest, and best in players

Elden Ring colosseum locations
(Image credit: Bandai Namco)

Elden Ring's big PvP Colosseum hasn't even been out for two weeks, yet players are already at each other's throats over a frankly degenerate meta. Check the subreddit for 12 seconds and you'll find plenty of complaints about the state of the game. Still, plenty of brave Tarnished continue to come up with refreshing and often hilarious ways to fight, showing off the full potential of FromSoftware's lovably broken PvP.

collosseum_antifun_starter_pack from r/Eldenring

The Elden Ring subreddit has become a time capsule for the game's rapidly evolving scene; you can click back through the days and count trends like rings on a tree. To the surprise of nobody, first came the Rivers of Blood devotees, followed swiftly by the tracking and AoE spell spammers, and then the spear dual-wielders whose hitboxes rival the Fire Giant. 

how_it_feels_trying_to_survive_as_a_basic_knight from r/Eldenring

Then an arguably more insidious group started to take root: the shield pokers. The same glorious great shields that could counter many previous meta strategies were now being used in timid turtle tactics. The solution? A smaller shield to parry the one-note offenders into next week. 

thank_god_shield_poking_is_punishable from r/Eldenring

Naturally, the PvP arena has also brought about all manner of cheese, and I'm talking about true cheese like spawn killing with magic to farm points in timed modes. Honor was out the window; gesturing respectfully at the start of fights was a thing of the past for many users, who were content to let honor be the empty tradition that warms the dead in their graves. But even in this wretched hive of scum and villainy, you could find unique builds, absurd brawls, and impressive role-playing that stood out. Never change, FromSoftware fans. 

ive_never_laughed_so_hard_in_colosseum_before from r/Eldenring
the_colosseum_is_a_serious_place from r/Eldenring
i_get_back_into_colosseums_and_i_find_myself from r/Eldenring
its_not_about_what_build_youre_using_its_how_you from r/Eldenring

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Austin Wood

Austin freelanced for the likes of PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and he's been with GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a senior writer is just a cover up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news and the occasional feature, all while playing as many roguelikes as possible.