How long to beat Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree?

Elden Ring: Shadow of the Erdtree
(Image credit: FromSoftware / Bandai Namco)

How long is Shadow of the Erdtree, and how long to beat this massive Elden Ring expansion? The hours to beat vary significantly depending on a player's skill level, but ultimately a player should be able to crack the main story in somewhere between 20-30 hours, and potentially double that number for the full experience if they're out to do everything. 

Obviously this is one of those games where the actual time to beat can vary massively, depending on skill level and the amount players want to engage with side content, but either way, we can explain how long it'll take you below. Don't worry, there's no spoilers for Shadow of the Erdtree here either, so read freely.

How long is Shadow of the Erdtree?

Elden Ring DLC Shadow of the Erdtree

(Image credit: FromSoftware / Bandai Namco)

As an expansion to Elden Ring, the Shadow of the Erdtree DLC will add the following hours to the core game, depending on how much you engage with its content.

  • Just story: 15-25 hours
  • Story + some side content: 20-35 hours
  • 100% Completion: 50+ hours

The big varying factors here are player skill (i.e., how many times you have to bang your head against a boss before you beat it), plus exploration (how long it takes a player to work out where they actually have to go), as Shadow of the Erdtree is even less linear that Elden Ring was, and there's many times where you just have to guess about where you're supposed to go.

Both of these factors mean that SOTE could be an incredibly short or long experience. A player who knows the route ahead of time and beats every boss on the first encounter could arguably complete the main plot in under ten hours - though that seems very unlikely for all but the most elite Elden Ring warriors.

If you're going to do 100% of everything in the Erdtree expansion, every NPC's side quest, every miniboss, every area and every challenge, find all the special Shadow of the Erdtree Scadutree Fragments, expect at least 50 hours of content. Shadow of the Erdtree is a big expansion pack for the core game - and frankly, one that's worth savouring. Of course, if you want a hand getting through it properly, we've got some Shadow of the Erdtree tips to help you better understand what you're getting into.

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Joel Franey
Guides Writer

Joel Franey is a writer, journalist, podcaster and raconteur with a Masters from Sussex University, none of which has actually equipped him for anything in real life. As a result he chooses to spend most of his time playing video games, reading old books and ingesting chemically-risky levels of caffeine. He is a firm believer that the vast majority of games would be improved by adding a grappling hook, and if they already have one, they should probably add another just to be safe. You can find old work of his at USgamer, Gfinity, Eurogamer and more besides.