One new Elden ring patch was blown by the wind, bringing performance fixes along with buffs and nerfs to spells and abilities. Among the victims is the stupidly powerful Hoarfrost Stomp Ash of War that players – especially speedrunners – were using to destroy bosses and beat the game in less than half an hour.
Seeing the beloved stomp drop, one of Elden Ring’s current top speedrunners tweeted “RIP Elden Ring speedruns,” but don’t worry, this nerfed spell is definitely not putting an end to Elden Ring speedruns. It’s a speedbump at worst, and maybe even a ramp to more ridiculous strategies.
Rip Elden Ring Speedruns pic.twitter.com/cHzI91yEBXMarch 17, 2022
Distortion2, current record holder 28:29 minutes any% speedrun for Elden Ring, he was probably kidding, of course. I can confidently promise that nothing stops speedrunners, certainly no single patch. I don’t blame Distortion for regretting the nerf on this particular cheat.
Regole, another Elden Ring speedrunner and Speedsouls moderator, explained to me that this is a pretty significant setback, at least for now.
“Weakening Stomp Ash of War itself is not the main issue,” he says, “but [FromSoftware] also fixing the glitch when using Royal Knight’s Resolve which allowed you to transfer the big damage bonus to your Icerind Hatchet.” This Royal Knight’s Resolve exploit is what was really fueling all that high damage ice ax blow. in that exploration.
“The truth, however, is that, at least for now, Hoarfrost Stomp isn’t going anywhere,” says Regole. As he points out, speedrunners for all Souls games don’t necessarily use the latest patch. “downpatching” or reverting to a previous version of the game, is a routine part of running many games. Speedrun.com when registration opens March 25th.
Following the patch notes, Discord from the Speedsouls community was a flurry of suggestions for alternatives to the boss-melting Hoarfrost Stomp. Regole suggests that other weapons such as the twisted Reduvia dagger or Blasphemous Blade, that are convenient to update can become new favorites.
“Maybe someone will find something that is even faster than what we were doing previously,” Regole says. “Not just a different weapon, but maybe even entirely new flaws that weren’t possible or undiscovered in previous patches of the game.”
It’s still early days for Elden Ring’s speedrunning, actually. More patches will come. New exploits will emerge. Speedrunners will be digging up new tricks in this one for years to come. If they find even more broken ways to defeat bosses than the dominant ice floor, I can’t wait to see them.