Game streamer Charlie "Cr1tikal" White announced last week he will reward $20,000 to anyone who completes a deathless solo playthrough of the Halo 2 campaign at the maximum difficulty setting with special game modifiers that make the game even harder.
"This was kind of like my Willy Wonka moment, but instead of inviting you all to a chocolate factory, I invited you all to an insane asylum," White said. "The challenge I issued was perhaps the hardest challenge that currently exists in all of gaming. It is a challenge that has been completed by zero people in 18 years. That's right. No exaggeration."
"I really wanted to try to push the human race towards greatness. I wanted to witness history being made."
In the Halo series, "Legendary" mode is the hardest setting, forcing players to shoot endless streams of bullets at near-invincible aliens that mock you as they kill you again and again.
(It also gives you the best cutscenes)
There are also "skulls" that the players can find hidden throughout the game that make things harder. For example, one skull takes away your heads up display, giving you zero clue where you are aiming or how much ammo you have. Another gives near-impossible enemies twice as much health. Yet another causes enemies to chuck grenades at you with the speed of a machine gun.
You can see how this might be insanely hard, which is why no one has beaten the game with all the modifiers since it came out in 2004.
At first, White offered $5,000 for the challenge. After seeing no one complete it for three weeks, he raised it to $20,000 to "encourage you to keep attempting it."
"I was naive," White said. "In my hubris, I thought I could play god and make a miracle happen. I was under the impression that maybe the reason this hasn't been completed is because the motivation for gamers just wasn't there.
"So I took a page out of Scrooge McDuck's playbook and I reached into my pockets and I slapped a $5000 bounty on this bad boy, thinking this would incentivize people to run it and we might see a champion emerge, but unfortunately all we've seen emerge so far is mental illness.
"This has broken some people's minds. Spirits are shattered. ... Over the last three weeks, it has been misery for quite a few runners who've given it a try."
White reports the "sad" statistics of the runners of the challenge:
- 99% did not beat the first level
- 80% did not get past "the first two rooms" of the first level, including White himself
- Only four runners have beaten the first level
- Only two of those four runners have beaten the first level more than once
Good luck out there, Spartans!
Here's the full video (language warning):
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