Written by. Ryuki Ishii based on the original Japanese article (original article’s publication date: 2022-04-30 17:44 JST)
YouTuber Iron Pineapple uploaded a video titled “Can You Beat Elden Ring While Over the MAX Equip Load?” and as the title suggests, they challenged themselves to clear the game while over-encumbered, which comes with a great deal of hardship.
The following article contains spoilers of Elden Ring.
Elden Ring is the latest action RPG from FromSoftware, and the playable character has a stat called Equip Load, which is determined by the total weight of currently equipped weapons and armor. It affects the character’s ability to dodge roll; for example, keeping the Equip Load 29.99% or lower will allow the character to long roll, and hitting the 70% mark will make the character fat roll (slow and short rolls). If you go over 100%, the character becomes over-encumbered, inflicting penalties such as the inability to dodge, backstep, and jump. They’ll move slower as well, although they can still crouch or ride Torrent.
As you can see, clearing the game in an over-encumbered state can be troublesome. Iron Pineapple has done other challenges in the past, such as beating the game at level 1, but their latest challenge is quite experimental. To make the character overloaded right from the beginning, they modified the save data and added heavy weapons to equip but made sure not to use them during the playthrough.
The first thing you’ll likely notice is the tediously slow character movements. “It’s hard to overstate just how slow walking around is. If you’re an impatient person, attempting this run would be a nightmare. But I managed to reach a sort of calm zen state early on,” says Iron Pineapple in the video. They had to make their first major decision when reaching the Site of Grace at Gatefront; Whether to use Torrent or not. Iron Pineapple decided not to use the trusty horse and stick to walking “unless it was absolutely necessary to progress.”
They explained that “being forced to walk would dramatically change encounters in the overworld,” and an example of this happening could be seen right after entering the gate, where most players would ride Torrent to get through. With some trial and error, they managed to take the giant down by pulling them away from other enemies.
Since they couldn’t dodge roll while over-encumbered, they had to rely on shields to deal with incoming attacks. And for this reason, Iron Pineapple made a long detour to collect shields and prepare for the Margit boss fight. They also realized that they could still do a small recovery roll after getting knocked down to the ground, even while over-encumbered. This technique was used in the Margit fight to avoid some of the attacks.
Not being able to jump meant Iron Pineapple had to give up obtaining some of the items since they couldn’t reach them, and they had no choice but to go through the main gate of Stormveil Castle and deal with the nightmarish ballistae since the side entrance route can’t be used without jumping. It took time, but they overcame the hurdles and continued onward.
There were some locations where it was necessary to jump in order to progress, but Iron Pineapple soon realized that using the Ground Slam skill would suffice as an alternative.
Facing Radahn was problematic since his arrows would knock the character back so much that it was near impossible to reach him in the first place. Iron Pineapple used the Quickstep skill to deal with this and finished him off by making him fall into the ocean (related article). “Genuinely one of the most satisfying boss kills I’ve ever gotten,” says Iron Pineapple.
In the end, Iron they managed to beat the game while being over-encumbered from start to finish, an incredible feat that requires patience, resilience, and flexible thinking. For those who are interested, check out Iron Pineapple’s video to see more about how they overcame obstacles during this experimental run.