Most players take pride in beating bosses in the way the game intended, regardless of how unfair the fight may be. Some others, however, say screw that and defeat not just the bosses but also the games they inhabit through the use of unthinkably bonkers strategies …
The Bloody Crow of Cainhurst is such a badass that you could probably make the case that a developer just forgot to give him a boss-sized health bar during early development, then didn't go back to add it because he was scared. Lower-level players who get killed by one cut of his sword are the lucky ones, as chances are he'll just kill snipe you -- with a repeating pistol. He's the worst but also has a common built-in bully weakness: making him bleed his own blood.
Despite being one of the strongest in the game, his sword also makes him continually bleed as long as he has it equipped. If he's engaging with the player in 1v1 combat, this is not a problem because he'll probably kill the player before he has to worry about his life depleting. But if we merely tease him about fighting ...
cowardly tactically taking a slow step back as soon as he equips the sword, and Bloodborne will go from a fast-paced action title to a Victorian It Follows ...
Making the Bloody Crow forget he's bleeding to death.
Valheim became a huge hit by picking up on a lot of elements from hardcore survival indie games, then toning them down to the point of allowing players to enjoy the damn game. That doesn't mean the pillage-less Viking simulator isn't without its challenges, one of them being the wolves. They're as deadly as it gets, but unlike the other strong enemies who all look like monstrosities, the wolves just look like dogs made cooler by years of smoking. Every petting attempt by an unprepared player will result in a well-fed wolf.
A player named Alpaca claims he accidentally put a wolf in the breeding grounds one normally would use for deer and boars. It didn't take long for him to notice the wolves' surprising ability to write death sentences and decide to create an army of wolves for the purpose of delivering some fanged fury to the game's final boss.
And when we say army, that's not just because we don't know the correct denomination for a group of wolves. Alpaca didn't just breed a pack of wolves to keep him company ...
... he bred over 50 of them, got them up to max level, then just let them do their thing.
The killing was so easy that, when watching the GIFs below, you might get the feeling that Alpaca was just giving his good boys a nice meal after a successful battle when in reality, that is the battle. What you're seeing is the final boss getting killed, long before having the chance of cursing the developers for making him exist as a pile of dog treats.
The Yiga Clan is composed of shapeshifters who disguise themselves as friendly NPCs to lure players into the comfort of an amicable chat right before trying to murder them. Fighting this clan can be challenging, as their tricks and extreme agility make them some of the most challenging enemies in the game. Luckily, some players realized that you shouldn't engage such sneaky bastards in gentlemanly warfare but rather by mimicking the mimics' terms of engagement. The result is pure catharsis.
Though it became a niche trend for a while, no one gained more fame than player mWi1ME in the fine art of out-trolling the trolls.
Experienced players such as mWi1ME can already tell between a hardworking NPC and a hardworking shapeshifting killer. They also know that the shapeshifters only go aggressive after interacting with the player, so all players need to do is set up a contraption that will blast the impostor into space as soon as the conversation ends.
Destiny 2 is the spiritual successor to Halo, the game that made the First Person Shooter genre leap from the Half-Life formula of "finding clever ways to solve complex problems" back to "find GUN to K1LL enemies". Interestingly, though, a bunch of players have been making a nice compromise by finding the most bonkers ways to solve the complex problem that is killing the game's enemies.
The most "Yeah, teamwork!" of the bunch is player Djxyz0's strategy, which you can recreate if you have around a dozen friends standing by. All you need to do is have them all jump atop enemy ships until they cause them to drop into the ground and get erased out of existence because the game doesn't know what the hell is happening.
"We didn't come to earth expecting the Super Mario Brothers to bring along their Super Mario Cousins."
So, did this physics-light shooter turn out to have a really cool Mario Easter egg? Nope, it's just like in war of the worlds, where the aliens didn't expect to be haxx no-scopped by a virus (haha, what a bunch of idiots), except the aliens here are the developers who didn't count on good old human vandalism.
Up until not too long ago, DOOM's Icon of Sin was an enemy players thought could only get killed through digging down into hell and taking upon themselves to shoot a rocket into its brain – generally, a surefire way to kill anything.
Turns out you can also kill him by waiting it out. Yeah, the idea of waiting until hell freezes over to kill the devil kind of feels like a rumor started by the devil to protect the devil, but it's actually true.
The greatest trick the devil ever pulled was convincing the world he had God mode turned on.
Player Pleymo not only did it but also brought a camera to hell to document how he went about it. Best of all: he did it on a level from Final DOOM, belonging to a compilation of the hardest possible scenarios in the game -- think where the worst hell demons go to when they die in regular hell. Turns out it's less about waiting for the Icon of Sin to die and more about hitting retry, surviving until two demons start fighting each other, and one of them messes up a shot so bad that his projectile lands inside the icon's skull. It only took Pleymo 829 attempts.
A long time ago, we documented the historical death of Darth Malak from Knights of the old republic, a sith lord who could easily be undone by stepping on a bunch of mines suspiciously lumped together. Upon a deeper dive into the old texts of Star Wars Legends, we found out yet another historical account of a dark lord who thought himself immune to dumb slapstick.
In Dark Forces 2: Jedi Knight, players clash against Jerec, a "Dark Jedi" (oh, old canon) and final boss who once again is supposed to be unbeatable by anything other than a lightsaber.
Now, unlike Malak, who lived and died on an RPG, Jerec lived to die in a high-octane action game, meaning that we have a much better-animated recording of his undoing. Here you can watch poor Jerec walk into an explosion that nearly propels him off-screen and into instant death.
If that's too violent or worse -- too quick to understand, we'll try another angle.
So, what the hell happened? Jerec is programmed to be impervious to your weapons, and he is. The explosives themselves deal exactly 0 damage to him, even if you use the same amount you used to destroy the other Sith Lord. They do, however, project him several feet through the air -- even if horizontally -- which causes him to hit the ground or a wall at a very high speed. The developers didn't predict speedrunners -- the Jedi of gaming -- so they never bothered to make the boss impervious to fall damage, causing poor Jerec to get overkilled as soon as his very rocketed body splats on any surface.
Top image: Sony Computer Entertainment