World of Warcraft speedrunner hits max level in record time

The end of DesMephisto's WoW speedrun.
(Image credit: Blizzard Entertainment)

It almost feels like it would be an insult to say that World of Warcraft streamer DesMephisto is good at the game, like the virtual equivalent of saying Muhammad Ali was good at boxing. Over recent times this guy has been setting record after record thanks to the various levelling boosts accessible in the runup to Shadowlands, and now has done it again: taking an Alliance Death Knight from level 10 to level 50 in an astonishing three hours and thirty-three minutes. 

It's worth reminding ourselves at this point that, while DesMephisto is obviously taking advantage of everything he can and WoW is a different beast, such a levelling arc was originally designed to play out over weeks and months, not hours.

Let's not get too into the weeds here (WoWhead has a granular breakdown of every technique and item used), but DesMephisto is maximising the value of the anniversary XP boost, using Chromie to jump between expansions, and making clever use of Hearthstones to slice-out huge chunks of travel time. If it wasn't for some douchebags trying to stream-snipe him, this would have been even quicker. 

You can watch the full run below. Some of these tactics won't be in WoW for much longer so, unless DesMephisto breaks it himself, this 'record' could stand for a long time.

We interviewed DesMephisto a few months ago, describing how he's become feted by the community for his unconventional approach to World of Warcraft: "one part theorycrafter, one part speedrunner, and all parts warrior." OK he used a Death Knight this time but we'll let that slide. 

This record is the latest in DesMephisto's long list of WoW achievements, something Blizzard recognised in a recent patch by adding the item Desm's Fistos, plate gauntlets that add ridiculous buffs to the 'haste' and 'mastery' skills. And what WoW fan wouldn't relate to his reaction.

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Rich Stanton

Rich is a games journalist with 15 years' experience, beginning his career on Edge magazine before working for a wide range of outlets, including Ars Technica, Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, Gamespot, the Guardian, IGN, the New Statesman, Polygon, and Vice. He was the editor of Kotaku UK, the UK arm of Kotaku, for three years before joining PC Gamer. He is the author of a Brief History of Video Games, a full history of the medium, which the Midwest Book Review described as "[a] must-read for serious minded game historians and curious video game connoisseurs alike."