My Favourite Self-Imposed Gaming Challenges

Like most people for the past 2 weeks I’ve been playing a ton of Diablo 4. And having a ton of fun! And like most people I’ve seen playing Diablo 4 I’ve been challenging myself with the Hardcore mode. If you don’t know what Hardcore mode is; it means that when your character dies, that’s it for them. No second chances.  And I started doing this because I don’t have a lot of time to play games anymore.

I know that sounds counter-intuitive putting my hard work and time at such a high risk. But, the way I see it playing in Hardcore mode means that each minute I play packs in about 5 minutes worth of stress. So in my 90 minutes of free time I can squeeze in almost 6 hours of stress.  All the hardcore gaming has gotten me thinking about the kind of challenges that people put themselves through in order to get some more enjoyment out of their favourite games. So let’s talk about those. 

Hardcore Classic World of Warcraft

If you’ve been following along you know I have a thing of World of Warcraft. And if you’ve been checking out Twitch and Youtube recently you may have seen an uptick in people playing Classic World of Warcraft again 4 after its re-release. Which was 15 years after its initial release. The reason all these people have been flocking back to Azeroth is a little addon called Classic Hardcore. This addon restricts access to some in-game utilities like the auction house and mailbox, prevents trading with other players, and most importantly tracks when you die. Because, like Hardcore Diablo, once a character dies that’s it, there’s no coming back. 

Not only have I seen this, but I’ve given it a go with some friends as well. It’s such a great way to add some stakes to a game that I’ve played countless times. As well as breathing life into a game I love, it’s also a fun way to introduce people to a game. It brings us together as a group (because if one of us dies we all do) and gives us a great reason to get together and hang out for a few hours at a time. 

Not to mention watching all of our characters’ lives be thrown away because your friend thought that it wasn’t that tall of a cliff.

source: WOW Classic Hardcore

Skillers in Runescape 

Runescape is a classic, much like World of Warcraft. Which means that more and more people are finding new ways to enjoy their favourite game. Skillers play their way through Runescape without leveling any combat skills, focusing only on all the other skills. This all culminates into an obsession with maximising your time spent to get as much experience as possible.
What I love about this challenge is that it completely changes the way that you play the game. You need to be careful around creatures to make sure you never get into an unwanted tussle, you’ve got to put together a list of which quests you can do to speed along your process, and you get to focus on things that aren’t normally done in the game. It’s a great way to spend your fourth go around!

source: HCIMLAMPS via r/runescape

Pokemon Nuzlockes

This is probably the most well known of the gaming challenges mentioned here, and just about anywhere. Nuzlockes are a way to play your favourite Pokemon games where you’re forced into using Pokemon that you don’t normally use. And if a Pokemon faints you’ve got to let it go forever. Nuzlockes are a great way to get some more replays out of Kanto and the like, and it forces you to use Pokemon that you don’t normally take in. They also force you to have a much tighter relationship with the Pokemon you do end up with. Because your choices are limited so when they go you feel it a whole lot more. 

But this isn’t enough for some players. Thanks to creators like PokemonChallenges variants of these challenges just get more and more intense. No items, no switching, and if one single Pokemon bites the dust your whole run is over. And if that’s not enough people have decided that even with all these extra rules it’s just not enough of a challenge, so they’ve taken our favourite childhood games and leveled up the difficulty of just about every aspect, just for Nuzlockers. The most famous of these are Radical Red and Emerald Kaizo; recreations of two classics with updated Pokedexes, new learnsets, updated trainers and gym leaders. Just about enough to get 90% of people who play them to give up, even some of the best. 

Nuzlockes are even so popular with Pokemon games players have taken the concept to other games like Fire Embelm.

source: kamoninfernape via r/pokemonradicalred

An honourable mention…

With all the challenges I’ve mentioned above there is one final challenge that gamers willingly put themselves through that I respect and admire. 

Playing League of Legends. 


[Editors Note]: Before you go why not check out Damo’s other sweet posts!


Lover of all things MMOs, professional wrestling, JRPGs, and most things inbetween

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