An NPC in Elden Ring is stealing players' runes

Wondered why you're losing runes in Stormveil Castle? Turns out someone is syphoning them from your bloodstain.


Elden Ring has a whole lot of hidden mechanics. From invisible walls and boosts to rune acquisition during certain weather events, there are a lot of details that can go unnoticed. However, a few savvy players are noticing that a portion of their runes are disappearing whenever they die and pick them back up. Note that there are some light NPC-related spoilers below.

Our own Co-EIC Bill Lavoy heard a rumor online that players were losing a portion of their runes while exploring Stormveil Castle. After dying, and retrieving their runes, the amount they picked up was markedly less than they had dropped. In fact, it would appear that 30 percent of their runes had vanished. Check out Lavoy’s investigation below to see it happen.

As it turns out, there is an NPC in Stormveil Castle called Gatekeeper Gostoc, who upon first visiting, actually helps players avoid walking face-first into a barrage from ballistae. While this is certainly helpful, Gostoc gives with one hand and takes with the other. You see, whenever you die in Stormveil Castle, Gostoc will syphon 30 percent of the runes from your bloodstain.

That’s a whole lot of work gone, right under your nose. To make matters worse, if you die again, another 30 percent will be whisked away and it will continue happening until you’re bled dry. This is such a classic Soulsborne mechanic, one that could be easily overlooked but has a direct impact on the player.

But the story doesn’t end there. No, it actually gets better. Should you decide to exact your revenge on Gostoc for pinching your precious runes and actually defeat him, you will receive all the runes that he syphoned from you. Lavoy managed to get a whopping 13,000 runes back from the sneaky so-and-so.

It’s things like this that showcase the nature of the Soulsborne games that people love. So now the question is: are you going to go and defeat Gostoc and see how many runes he’s stolen from you? Let us know how much he was holding. For more on FromSoftware's critically-acclaimed title, check out our Elden Ring page.

Guides Editor

Hailing from the land down under, Sam Chandler brings a bit of the southern hemisphere flair to his work. After bouncing round a few universities, securing a bachelor degree, and entering the video game industry, he's found his new family here at Shacknews as a Guides Editor. There's nothing he loves more than crafting a guide that will help someone. If you need help with a guide, or notice something not quite right, you can message him on X: @SamuelChandler 

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