In the time-honored tradition of gimmicky Souls game playthroughs, an Elden Ring player recently challenged themself to beat the game using nothing but their character's butt. Yes, there is a butt attack in Elden Ring and, yes, it can apparently become ultra-powerful in the right hands.
Souls game speedrunner Distortion2, who currently holds the Any% world record for Elden Ring, took on the challenge last week by starting a new game and immediately equipping their spear with an Ashes of War move called Ground Slam. Despite the name, this ground slam is most certainly a butt stomp—the player jumps into the air and slams cheek-first into the earth with enough force to make Mario proud.
To be clear, Distortion doesn't take down every one of Elden Ring's over 150 bosses in the butt run. They mostly stick to bosses that reward the player with Remembrance, or in other words, bosses that FromSoftware deems difficult/important enough to have a big prize. That by no means makes the run less impressive. Distortion's hit list includes every plot-critical boss and other heavy hitters like Malenia.
What's the secret behind Distortion's cheeks of steel? Lots and lots of buffs, by the looks of it. In the 2-hour highlights video above, Distortion starts pretty much every fight by imbuing themself with some sort of attack or defense buff depending on the situation. The results are impressive. In many cases, they're able to butt-smack bosses to death faster than I could with two beefed-up katanas.
But it's not as easy as spamming one attack and turning their brain off—since the butt stomp move takes time to wind up and execute, Distortion has to be careful with timing and try not to get staggered out of their attacks. This becomes a bigger concern in later fights with Rykard, Malenia, and Mohg, where they start equipping armor with high poise to get around the stagger problem. With how brutal Elden Ring's final gauntlet of bosses becomes, I'm a little amazed they were able to stick to the challenge. You can hear the relief in Distortion's voice as they finally pound the final boss into submission.
In their own words, the butt run "started off strong and slowly descended into despair." Still, they say it was a lot of fun and would recommend the challenge to others.