After almost three weeks with the game, Ring of Elden players had found extremely effective ways to break it, using We are building smash difficult bosses like Malenia as well as other players in PVP invasions. FromSoft took notice, however, and nerfed some of the more popular versions of a patch 1.03 massive which went live overnight. Now players will need to find replacements for strats based on Mimic Tear, Hoarfrost Stomp, and other previously game-changing items and abilities.
Mimic Tear was by far the most effective. A Spirit Ash summon found in Ring of Eldenof the Eternal City, it allows players to summon an exact replica of themselves to fight alongside them. Because it copied a player’s exact build, but was controlled by the AI, players could deck themselves in their most powerful gear, use the summon, and then return to their preferred loadout while the mimicry was then unleashed in front of them, distracting the bosses. It has become a go-to technique for beating most bosses in the game, including one of the toughest, Malenia, Blade of Miquella.
However, after the last patch, the damage of the Mimic Tear summon has been reduced significantly. A player on the Ring of Elden subreddit who tested it estimated that the nerf was around 50%. At the same time, they said the mimic played a bit smarter and dodged more. But it’s definitely less effective at spamming powerful spells over and over again.
Hoarfrost Stomp was another favorite. The melee skill found near the Liurnia of the Lakes had both high DPS and area of effect damage. Using it repeatedly would also inflict frost on enemies. It was an all-in-one crowd control machine ideal for farming enemy spawns and destroying other players during invasions. Last night’s patch apparently cut his damage in half and increased the cast time. “I had it literally minutes before shutting down and applying the patch,” wrote a player. “I couldn’t even use it. I’ve always destroyed people in pvp, but not like I was rekt by that yesterday.
The patch thankfully fixed a unique exploit that players were using to ruin PvP. The Deathblight version combined the Eclipse Shotel weapon with the Fire’s Deadly Sin incantation to rapidly develop death sickness on opposing players and sometimes trap them in repeated stabbing animations. the Ring of Elden community was divided on whether it was a bug or a legit part of the game, but this is no longer the case. Some PvP players unaware that the exploit has been fixed still tried to deploy it, only to be quickly cut off when it doesn’t work.
Sword of Night and Flame was another build some considered broken. Located in the Caria Mansion, the weapon’s Night-and-Flame Stance skill allowed players to follow up an attack with a Comet Azur sorcery to deal a lot of ranged fire damage. This could devastate unsuspecting PvP players, but was also easily countered by those who knew what they were doing. In PvE, meanwhile, this was another OP ability that players were having fun with. The latest fix still nerfed, Nevertheless. The Moonveil katana wasn’t mentioned in the patch notes at all, but it was also apparently stealthily patched to lengthen its combat animation.
This is where things get tricky by making drastic changes to a game that some players treat mostly as an offline single-player experience. “I literally just got this sword of night and flame last night at Ring of Elden, since I couldn’t find a weapon I liked,” one player wrote on Twitter. “I poured in *every resource I had* since I heard it was good, then I was told to update my game. Turns out the update l ‘nerved into the ground.
While some of patch 1.03 added new content or fixed existing broken quests, much of it rebalanced the game in the way you’d expect someone to treat a live service title. Regardless of whether the tweaks themselves are good or not, it’s definitely something players will have to grapple with, assuming FromSoftware has more changes in mind down the road. For now, some players get by the only way they know how: by desperately looking for the next OP builds to exploit.