Many of FromSoftware’s games are punishing. They require calmness, patience, and quick reflexes, as any wrong move or panicked action could—and often does—result in an unceremonious death. So, you’d think taking advantage of every tool in your arsenal when exploring FromSoft’s games would be a no-brainer. But YouTuber ymfah made Dark Souls 3 so much harder, by limiting his in-game movement to anything but walking.
ymfah is a YouTuber who regularly uploads silly “gimmick run” videos on FromSoft games, like one where he only used guns in Bloodborne. Earlier this month, he posted a video doing the improbable: beating Dark Souls 3 without walking. To be sure, there’s still movement. ymfah used various exploits and mechanics to get around, including the TearDrop glitch to bypass death boxes, and the dash-like quickstep skill on the Bandit’s Knife. But otherwise, and going so far as to switch off his left analog stick, ymfah spent a lotta time shimmying to reach Dark Souls 3's final boss.
It’s a ridiculous feat in practice. ymfah selected the thief class for the Bandit’s Knife, which not only has that quickstep weapon skill, but also performs fast, forward-moving slashes. Alongside the dagger, the thief also starts with a short bow which, when aimed, resets your camera and character’s position.
After establishing some parameters—such as no keyboard or stick movements, and no key rebindings—ymfah set off spamming the light attack and quickstep skill to move forward, locking onto enemies and aiming with the bow to turn around, and attempting to avoid any unnecessary fights along the way. That last part was a hopeless impossibility that ultimately led to lots and lots of deaths. If this sounds hella extra, that’s because it is.
ymfah told Kotaku over Discord messages that the inspiration came from a similar run he performed with The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim about a year ago.
“I like challenging myself with interesting ideas,” ymfah said. “More specifically, I like solving challenges like puzzles. I set a strict goal, I plan ahead using the knowledge of the game, and when I meet an unexpected hurdle I try to overcome it with new and interesting ideas. I’m on PC so I used steam controller settings to disable my left stick. It wasn’t really necessary since I had practice with that no-walk Skyrim and didn’t touch the stick then.”
One of the hardest things about this run, ymfah said, was recreating the TearDrop glitch, which turns you into a floating fire ember after exploiting the Tears of Denial spell, saving you from lethal damage. Harder than that, though, was navigating Dark Souls 3's areas. ymfah remarked that this run killed him hundreds of times, particularly that tough Slave Knight Gael boss you can find in Filianore’s Rest and The Cathedral of the Deep.
“Hardest area aside from the [Tears of Denial] run in the Profaned Capital would be Cathedral of the Deep and Irithyll of the Boreal Valley,” ymfah told us. “Those areas were a nightmare to navigate with so many enemies to fight. This was before I got the hidden body and slumbering ring combo.” Here ymfah is referring to two items that, when used together, make it hard for enemies to spot you.
Ymfah has only performed this stressful run twice, but he has plans to try it with Elden Ring. It all depends on if he can find one particular movement skill that drops from a Night’s Cavalry in Caelid’s fiery Dragonbarrow region.
“I’ll be interested in doing something similar for Elden Ring for sure. Bloodhound Step should make things easier,” ymfah concluded.