In the world of gaming, achieving the extraordinary is a pursuit that drives players to push the boundaries of skill and determination. In a recent feat that has left the gaming community in awe, a player accomplished what many believed to be impossible: completing Sifu, the challenging action game, a new game in one sitting without taking a single hit. We had the exclusive opportunity to interview this remarkable gamer to delve into the secrets behind this incredible accomplishment.
Q: Congratulations on this incredible achievement! Can you share with us what inspired you to attempt this challenging feat in Sifu?
The main inspiration is very shallow! I started doing no-damage runs because of an outfit called the Master Hand that has this cool white hat that you can wear. But you can only keep the hat only for as long as you don’t get hit. So I took it upon myself to beat the game with the hat on. First in segments of one level each. Once I did that, I knew I could push it to eventually beat the entire game while keeping the hat on.
Q: Sifu is known for its punishing difficulty. Can you tell us about the preparation and practice that went into mastering the game to this level?
I’ve been doing no damage runs and other challenge runs since almost the release of the game. As I got better at it I just kept pushing the difficulty of the challenge higher and higher. So in a way I have been preparing for this run since release.
Q: What was the most challenging part of your no-hit run in Sifu, and how did you overcome it?
Surprisingly the hardest part was the first level. Most people might consider that the easiest level but considering it has a good number of crowd combat situations, you can easily get clipped by an enemy from an angle you’re not paying attention to. And also you start the game with only your basic moveset which doesn’t let you toy around with the enemies as I’d like.
How did I overcome it? I had already beat the level alone several times, so I had the confidence to do it. It was just a matter of grinding and getting the other levels complete in a single run.
Q: Did you use any specific strategies or techniques that you believe contributed to your success in avoiding hits throughout the game?
The game has a lot of cool advanced tech, exploits and speedrun strategies, but personally I don’t use many of these. My gameplay style is quite balanced. What contributed the most to my success was intimate knowledge of the enemy AI behavior and also the enemy makeup of each encounter. That just comes with a lot of time in the game.
Q: Many gamers are curious about your choice skill loadout in Sifu. Could you elaborate on your selections and how they played a role in your achievement?
My favorite moves in the game are crotch punch, snap kick, and chasing strikes. Though I did pick chasing trip kick before chasing strikes because it’s functionally superior. Most of these moves give you a lot more mobility and crowd control options. And crotch punch is probably the strongest move in the game due it being very fast and countering high attacks. Since most enemy attacks are highs, it’s a great skill to unlock early on.
Q: During your playthrough, were there any close calls or moments where you thought you might get hit? How did you stay focused and maintain your composure?
At the 1 hour 3 minute 27-second mark, you see a grunt with a knife swing it twice but I only evade once. You can evade both swings with one evade input, but it’s a toss-up. For that attack, you should always evade twice if you want to guarantee not getting hit. I just got lucky there. I would have been really mad if I lost the run that close to completion. But I’ve had a lot of resets and retries from doing no-damage runs for nearly a year, so recovering from that was not that hard. That just comes with experience.
Q: Sifu features a variety of formidable enemies and challenging boss fights. Can you share your approach to tackling these adversaries without taking any damage?
It’s just a lot of practice and a lot of playtime in the game. Among that is also a lot of segmented no damage runs as well. The game also lets you use modifiers and make the game even harder, so those are great for practice too. The amount of options the game gives you with its modifier system, it endlessly lets you train and get better. So eventually I got to a point where I felt I was ready for this challenge and just went for it.
Q: How long did it take you to achieve this world record in Sifu, and did you encounter any particularly frustrating moments along the way?
In my head, I knew I was gonna attempt this run 9 months ago, but I was genuinely too scared to attempt it. So I kept doing other challenging runs and segmented level runs, until I got to a point about a month ago where I knew I was good enough to start attempting it. So with serious attempts, it took me about 60 hours of attempts spread across 3 weeks.
The most frustrating thing is to lose the run to a bug in the later levels, which happened once in the final level and once in the 4th level. But those attempts also made me realize that I was very close to completing the run, as long as I was patient and kept attempting.
Q: What advice do you have for aspiring gamers who want to improve their skills and attempt similar no-hit challenges in demanding games like Sifu?
It should be obvious, but I think people should only attempt these types of runs if they really love the gameplay and want to push their limits. I’ve heard a few friends mention things about “losing sanity” or “just getting it over with,” but I never saw it like that. Yes, it was hard, but I still really enjoyed chasing this run. Sifu is just a really great game to play!