Elden RIng’s Miquella Is Less Saintly Than You Think


Like the deities and heroes from mythologies the world over, the Demigod children of Queen Marika in Elden Ring are both heroes and monsters, and the Empyrean Miquella may fall prey more to this more than players think. While the demigods can be shining paragons of excellence and ambition, they’re also deeply flawed and capable of astonishing cruelty. Among these brutal god-heroes, Miquella comes across as the most virtuous with his three-fold goal of curing his sister Malenia’s Scarlet Rot affliction, creating a home for the outcasts of the Lands Between, and liberating the planet from the influence of alien gods. A close investigation of the game lore, however, reveals a dark side to this golden-haired, perpetually youthful Demigod, who uses mind-altering magic to rally legions of fanatically devoted followers and tampers with the realm of dreams in order to realize his ambitions.


The backstory, setting, and hidden lore-filled quests of Elden Ring, crafted by fantasy author George R.R. Martin and refined by developers at FromSoftware, is a curious blend of themes from polytheistic Norse mythology and monotheistic Christianity. The Erdtree, a massive growth of golden bark and falling leaves that can be seen in every open-world area of Elden Ring, is almost certainly modeled after Yggdrasil, the Worldtree that supports the cosmos in Norse myth. Statues of the eternal goddess named Queen Marika show her hanging from an arc of light – like Christ on the cross, but also like Odin, chief god of the Aesir, who hangs himself from the branches of Yggdrasil in order to learn the knowledge of Runes. Elden Ring‘s extended family of fighting Demigods – red-haired hammer-wielders like Radagon, serpentine abominations like Rykard – also correspond to famous Norse gods like Thor and monsters like Jörmungandr, magnificent, mercurial beings whose virtues and flaws are those of humanity writ large.

Related: How Elden Ring Incorporates Irish Culture & Mythology Into Its Design

Miquella, twin brother of the infamously hard to beat boss Malenia, shares many motifs with Baldur, the fair-haired Norse god of light who was loved by all (and played a major role in God of War 2018). Within the game, players only encounter Miquella slumbering inside a mysterious cocoon atop Elden Ring‘s hard-to-reach Mohgwyn Palace, his single exposed arm withered and scarred. Multiple item descriptions and a painting in the opening cinematic depict Miquella in his prime as a golden-haired, un-aging child with limitless reserves of vitality, standing in contrast to his tall, red-haired, perpetually rotting sister. Miquella is strongly associated with Golden Order Fundamentalism, a scholarly discipline of faith magic that can conjure halos of light, return the undead to their proper rest, and manipulate physical laws of Causality and Regression in order to cure harmful ailments. He is also famed for being the crafter of Unalloyed Gold, a substance that can ward off the influence of the Outer Gods like the Scarlet Rot or Dark Moon. Using his own blood as fertilizer, he even created the Elden Ring‘s missed opportunity, the Haligtree, a towering rival to the Erdtree designed to be a bountiful home for outcast peoples shunned by Marika’s Golden Order. All these altruistic feats, contrasted with the warmongering of his Demigod kindred, make Miquella come across as a literal messiah, a saint almost beyond reproach.


Miquella Had The Power To Bewitch People Into Loving Him

There is an item in Elden Ring called the Bewitching Branch, crafted from a Sacramental Bud watered with Miquella’s blood and a Lily made of Unalloyed Gold. Stabbing a non-boss game enemy with this branch causes them to temporarily switch sides and fight other enemies. Elden Ring‘s Bewitching Branch consumable item has the following description:

The Empyrean Miquella is loved by many people. Indeed, he has learned very well how to compel such affection.

During their playthrough of Elden Ring, players will come across many NPC and enemies who demonstrate a fanatical devotion to Miquella, an Empyrean with the potential to become a god like Marika. Malenia’s Cleanrot Knights, who wield spears and scythes imbued with Miquella’s Golden Order Magic, fight fiercely for the Empyrean’s cause despite knowing proximity to Malenia will cause their flesh to rot away. After Miquella’s kidnapping by Mohg, the foot soldiers who guard the Elden Ring‘s parasitic, slowly-rotting Haligtree settlement turn their bodies into magical bombs in the hopes that the “…the flash of our deaths [will] guide Miquella’s return.”

Are the acts of devotion described above borne from a genuine love of Miquella, or did this innocent-looking Demigod cultivate mind-altering magic in order to assemble a cult of loyal zealots that he could use to enact his ambition? Nothing in the lore of Elden Ring suggests that Miquella was cruel or callous towards the people who loved him, but his public displays of benevolence could have pragmatic (rather than moral) motivations behind them.

Miquella Disguised Himself As Saint Trina To Tamper With The Dreams Of Others

The four main Sleep-inducing tools of the game – the Sleep Arrows, the Sleep Pots, the Soporific Grease, the Elden Ring Sword of Saint Trina and St. Trina’s Torch – are all associated with the mysterious St. Trina, described in item text as being either a young girl or boy and most decidedly not an adult. Many FromSoftware fans had guessed that Miquella and St. Trina were the same person before said guess was confirmed by the discovery of a cut quest-line revolving around the collecting of dreams from sleeping enemies and an NPC named Rico. Lying dormant in Elden Ring‘s files is cut dialogue where the NPC Rico realizes St. Trina and Miquella are one and the same, and moreover, that Miquella is cultivating a dream world in his heart.

Related: Elden Ring: Who St. Trina Really Is

Besides hinting a potential Miquella-themed DLC for Elden Ring, this revelation complicates the more-or-less straightforward picture of Miquella’s goals in the main game of Elden Ring (which may be why this quest-line was cut). Does Miquella, in his guise of St. Trina, gather dreams in order to help his subjects and heal his sister Malenia? Or is the world gestating within his heart a more selfish attempt to escape his old reality and create a new one where his dreams actually come true?

Miquella Was Willing To Sacrifice Others For The Sake Of His Goals

It would be hyperbole, at best, to say that Miquella is a villain in. To achieve his goals, Miquella may resort to ruthless methods, but said methods are consistently less atrocious than the limb harvesting of Elden Ring‘s Godrick the Grafted, the blasphemy of Rykard, or the genocidal imperialism of Queen Marika. Every piece of game lore about Miquella suggests that he genuinely loves his sister Miquella, genuinely wants to free her from the Scarlet Rot, and genuinely wants to be a good lord to his followers.

And there lies the rub. Miquella, for all his good intentions, was reared by a militant aristocracy of divine champions, taught to think of himself as superior to the mortals and menials under the guiding aegis of the Elden Ring. Though he and Malenia rejected the ideals of the Golden Order and sought to create a Haligtree civilization accepting of all, Elden Ring‘s Miquella, even inside his egg, may not have fully shed his old paternalistic worldviews, continuing to view his subjects as sheep to be herded, used – and sacrificed if necessary.

Next: The Lore Origins Of Elden Ring’s Sorceries


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