As much as the classic FromSoftware RPG is renowned for its difficulty, some streamers choose to take things to a whole new level. Enter: MissMikkaa, an Elden Ring streamer who successfully defeated the toughest boss in Elden Ring on a gamepad and a dance mat simultaneously.
This feat of Herculean soulsborne prowess is, perhaps, the highlight of MissMikkaa's quest to complete two concurrent playthroughs of Elden Ring with a dance pad and a DualSense. In addition to defeating two Malenias (widely regarded as the toughest boss in the game), MissMikkaa has gone on to defeat the Elden Beast, forever securing her place as Elden Lord (of the dance).
However, it was Malenia who proved to be the toughest challenge for the capering content creator. Defeating two Malenias at once via her chosen means took a whopping 199 tries. Interestingly, Malenia is an optional boss, whom MissMikkaa didn't technically have to defeat to complete her playthrough. However, it's pretty clear that the streamer doesn't shy away from a challenge. Once she'd laid the Blade of Miquella low in both of her games, the Elden Beast (the game's final story boss) didn't stand a chance.
These sorts of creative player-concocted challenges affirm that games are much more than simply what developers present to us. With a little bit of creativity, players can add novel twists to existing play experiences, much to the delight of gamers and spectators alike.
Inventive challenges using unorthodox peripherals are nothing new. For instance, players have cleared some of Final Fantasy 14's toughest content, defeating the MMORPG's endgame bosses with nothing but a guitar hero controller and some buddies (via YouTube). In the same spirit, harpist and vocalist Anna Ellsworth turned her actual, real-life harp into a controller and roundly thrashed a range of Elden Ring bosses, including the famously tricky Margit of the Fell Omen.
My personal favorite of these player-created challenges is the Pokémon "Nuzlocke challenge". Designed to add some much-needed difficulty to the Pokémon experience, a Nuzlocke playthrough has two basic rules. First, you can only capture the first wild Pokémon you encounter when you reach a new area. Second, if a Pokémon of yours faints, it is considered "dead" and must be released back into the wild. Even with these two rules alone, the kid-friendly gentleness of a Pokémon adventure is transfigured into a brutal gauntlet of tough decisions and tougher consequences.
Though using unorthodox controllers or extra rules to make a game more challenging is great fun, it is hardly new. However, I have to hand it to MissMikkaa. Doing two simultaneous Elden Ring playthroughs where one of your controllers is a dance mat is as inventive as it is awe-inspiring. If you want to see some of the clears for yourself, you can find the streams and some compilations on MissMikkaa's Twitch channel. I, for one, can't wait to see what she comes up with next.
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Cat Bussell is a Staff Writer at TechRadar Gaming. Hailing from the crooked spires of London, Cat is an experienced writer and journalist. As seen on Wargamer.com, TheGamer.com, and Superjumpmagazine.com, Cat is here to bring you coverage from all corners of the video game world. An inveterate RPG maven and strategy game enjoyer, Cat is known for her love of rich narratives; both story-driven and emergent.
Before migrating to the green pastures of games journalism, Cat worked as a political advisor and academic. She has three degrees and has studied and worked at Cambridge University, University College London, and Queen Mary University of London. She's also been an art gallery curator, an ice cream maker, and a cocktail mixologist. This crash course in NPC lifestyles uniquely qualifies her to pick apart only the juiciest video games for your reading pleasure.
Cat cut her teeth on MMOs in the heyday of World of Warcraft before giving in to her love of JRPGs and becoming embedded in Final Fantasy XIV. When she's not doing that, you might find her running a tabletop RPG or two, perhaps even voluntarily.