Baldur's Gate 3 Speedrunner Finishes Game In Under 4 Minutes Using A Morbid Trick

Baldurs Gate 3 Shadowheart
By some measures, Baldur's Gate 3 is the most highly reviewed PC game of all time, attaining an amazing 96/100 on the Metacritic review aggregator. This game features no in-app purchases or battle passes, with a level of polish and attention to detail that we really don't see enough of these days—and you can skip all of that if you just want to beat the game in less than four minutes. A speedrunner has just set a record by beating Baldur's Gate 3 in three minutes and fifty-seven seconds.

If you plow through all the content in Baldur's Gate 3, it could easily take you 100 hours or more. This is a deep, detail-oriented RPG in the finest tradition of Dungeons and Dragons. As such, it's a game that invites outside the box thinking. In the case of speedrunner ImTaiyl, there's a dead body in the box. It's a technique speedrunners have dubbed "Shadowboxing." You see, Baldur's Gate 3 features a companion character named Shadowheart (that's her above), and you can probably see where this is going.

The ImTaiyl record builds off a previous record set by another speedrunner, who managed to beat the game in a little over four minutes with Shadowboxing. The gist is, you have to kill Shadowheart (which will no doubt be distressing to those who have grown attached to the emo cleric) and place her body in a crate or box. Then, you set the box on fire, which causes the game to break just a little. Doing this at the right time can skip you all the way to the end of Act II, but that's only part of the trick.

Speedrunners using this method also need to choose Gale the wizard as their character rather than making a custom one. This gives players early access to two important spells: feather fall and enhanced leap. These abilities help Gale avoid combat, which allowed ImTaiyl to reach the entrance to Act II in mere minutes. At that point, Shadowboxing can skip you to the final Act II encounter. We will leave the specifics vague to avoid spoilers, but Larian Studios included the option for a "bad" ending at that point. With a little magical assistance from Gale, ImTaiyl wrapped up the game in record time.

Larian Studios previously announced the first patch for Baldur's Gate 3 would have more than 1,000 fixes, and the second patch has also rolled out since. None of those fixes addressed Shadowboxing, though. It's probably only a matter of time until this glitch is removed, and then "speedruns" will take much, much longer.