"That was an awful fight," says popular Dark Souls 3 speedrunner Nemz38 after felling The Ringed City's Demon Prince boss. This awful battle is part of Nemz' world record-breaking All Bosses (No Major Skips) run, whereby he breezes past the Demon in Pain, the Demon From Below, and the aforementioned Demon Prince in just over three minutes—including cut scene breaks. For the sake of perspective, this two-stage/three enemy bout took me several days and countless failures to overcome.
Which is why I love Dark Souls speedruns. The Soulsborne series is renowned for its difficulty, and while average players like myself have You Died etched into the Miyazaki-shaped corners of our brains, this lot make it look easy.
Like, really easy. Like, beating Dark Souls 3, its Ashes of Ariandel and Ringed City expansions—without relying on the major exploits often used in these runs—in just one hour, 25 minutes and 19 seconds.
Again, my own average DS3 save file clocks in around the 90-hour mark, which makes understanding the above near impossible.
There was a time when Nemz38 held all eight Dark Souls 3 world records, but it looks like new faces have emerged since I last checked. Nevertheless, Nemz38 is a joy to watch—and his 12:37:54 All Achievements run will never not blow my mind.
If speedrunning Dark Souls tickles your fancy, the SpeedSouls community is full of friendly and welcoming people.