Messages and Bloodstains in Elden Ring, like any Soulsborne game, serve a purpose. The glittering messages are ways to indirectly communicate with other players. Messages allow you to select random word combinations that show up when interacted with. Other players use these to tell you different things, like an upcoming NPC or boss. Bloodstains are much simpler, they just give other players that touch them a glimpse of what killed that player. It could be from a boss or fall damage. This is included to give a way to warn players of impending doom.
Other markers exist in the game, like summoning pools, and they’re a bit more useful. Messages and Bloodstains in Elden Ring just allow you to show players in other games different things. You could leave a message to a player, indicating a hidden item or fake wall. While these messages can be comical or even helpful at times, there’s way too many of them. And with trolling messages being common, new players can get confused. Right now, there is an abundance of messages left all over the Lands Between, and you need to sort through which ones are real and which ones are trolling you. Due to the millions of people playing the game, that’s sure to be the case for some time. But as the in-game population drops, that might be less of a problem.
But when you want to avoid that potential hangup, here’s what to do.
How to Disable Messages and Bloodstains in Elden Ring
As of now, there isn’t an ability to disable the messages or bloodstains by themselves in the game. If you’re online, you’re going to see them regardless. The only way to avoid them is to take the game offline. To do this, restart Steam in Offline Mode, and then launch the game from there. You could also physically unplug from your internet connection if you’re running over ethernet. But aside from disconnecting from the internet, that’s the only option you have.
This isn’t so bad, but you will lose access to more than just messages doing this. The online PvP elements of invasions will also be disabled, as you need internet to do that. If you play offline, you will no longer see what other players are doing. The ghostly glimpses of other players will no longer appear for you. The only exception is the baked-in messages and NPC invasions. Those still occur in offline mode.
But there might be a reason you want to do this. There could be a robust modding scene for Elden Ring one day. There are some quite impressive mods for Souls games, and to play some of those, you need to be in offline mode. Trying to go online with mods installed is a quick way to get banned, so don’t do it.
If you’re playing and enjoying the game, good for you! You might have questions though, so we have some guides to help you out. When making a character, picking the right class is important. Figure out how to level up your character once you’re in the game. From there, you might want to learn how to upgrade gear, or maybe how to find powerful weapons, like the Meteorite Staff. Or perhaps you’re a melee player and want that shiny new Rivers of Blood katana to hack away with? There are also tons of crafting jobs to be done, like making multiple types of arrows.