- Last night, shortly after midnight, I finally beat one of the most challenging bosses I’ve found so far in “Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice.”
- “Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice” is the latest game from Japanese developer From Software, which is the company behind “Bloodborne” and the “Dark Souls” series, some of the most famously difficult games ever made.
- Immediately after I beat the boss, I looked at my Apple Watch, which was able to capture the thrill of winning in that moment thanks to its built in heart-rate monitor.
“Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice” is one of the hardest games I’ve ever played. But it’s equally rewarding when you overcome any of its hurdles.
Over the past couple of nights, I’d been spending much of my time trying to beat Genichiro Ashina, one of the game’s main bosses and villains. You meet him at the beginning of the game and he slices off your left arm. Later in the game, you have a rematch. That’s where I was last night.
Genichiro has two phases: First, he attacks you with a sword and a bow. If you manage to get past that part, Genichiro transforms into a half-naked, stark-raving lunatic who can shoot lightning at you with his sword.
I spent hours trying to beat this guy – until last night, when I finally downed him.
Immediately after the bout, my heart was pounding. So I checked my Apple Watch, and opened the Heart app to see my heart rate at that moment.
My heart rate right after beating Genichiro hit 140 beats per minute – literally working double time. Mind you, my resting heart rate is somewhere around 60 beats per minute.
Though my Apple Watch was able to record my heart data at that moment, it doesn’t quite capture the dopamine-type response you get when you play a hard game like “Sekiro.” There’s a lot of time spent exploring new areas and meeting new characters, but the game’s main course is its many challenging bosses, who will punish you repeatedly until you learn their moves and figure out a strategy to subdue them. The upside, of course, is the thrill of perseverance and winning, as well as getting invaluable upgrade materials that make your character stronger. There’s no other way to improve your character’s strength or power in “Sekiro” other than to push through its boss battles.
“Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice” is already one of my favourite games of 2019. But hopefully it doesn’t give me a heart attack before I can actually finish it.
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