DS2 hitless

The Dark Souls series is known as one of the hardest game series to exist (whether that is actually true is up for debate…). It has a huge following, and some people played the games so much, that they come up with so-called “challenge runs”: playing through the game in a suboptimal manner, like never levelling up, or having to satisfy certain conditions.

One of those challenges is the “hitless run”: to finish the game without getting hit even once. I’ve seen some people stream on Twitch playing Dark Souls 3 with hitless runs, even restricting themselves further by specifying they’d only use the pyromancy attacks, for instance. It’s really fun to see the thought that goes into such runs, as if it’s some kind of puzzle that you need to optimise.

So I thought I might as well try it myself, with a Dark Souls 2 hitless run. DS2 is my favourite in the series — many people will tell you it’s the worst, but something in this game meshes really well with my playstyle. DS2 rewards careful exploration and taking your time to explore every nook and cranny. Just barging in won’t get you far, but positioning yourself in an optimal manner, using ranged attacks and paying attention to what is happening around you, certainly helps.

And a hitless run is a special kind of “cheesy” run. (When you stand at a safe spot and get rid of the enemies with a ranged attack, that’s called “cheesing”.) My love for “cheese at a distance” is well-documented, and so I see a hitless run as a special kind of cheesy tactics.

Of course it’s been done before. So I have started to analyse this video to see what other (successful) people do on their hitless DS2 runs. It’s been a lot of fun to watch and analyse, and it works too! So far, I have managed to get further and get there faster than if I had played the game “straight”.

Once I’ve had some base practice, I think I’ll stream some attempts, just for the laughs.

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