Baldur’s Gate 3 is a massive role-playing game that can take dozens of hours to complete, but some speedrunners have found a way to finish it in a fraction of that time. The latest record was set by Mae, who managed to beat the game in just four minutes and 15 seconds using a very strange and hilarious technique.
The Secret of Shadowboxing
The key to Mae’s speedrun is a tactic that they call “Shadowboxing”, which involves killing one of the main characters, Shadowheart, and putting her corpse in a crate. This somehow causes the game to glitch and skip most of the second act, bringing Mae directly to the final boss.
Mae starts by choosing Gale as their character and using the spells Enhance Leap and Feather Fall to jump over obstacles and enemies. They also use Misty Step to bypass a fight with Ketheric Thorm, the leader of the githyanki raiders. They then reach the Mountain Pass, where Shadowheart automatically joins their party.
The Power of a Dead Companion
Mae then proceeds to kill Shadowheart with Gale’s fire bolt spell, while she disapproves of their actions. They then drag her body to a nearby crate and put it inside, using her portrait as an icon. They then try to set the crate on fire, but it doesn’t work. Instead, they start shaking the crate around the area, which somehow triggers the game to load the final area of Act 2.
There, they encounter the Absolute, a mysterious entity that is behind the plot of Baldur’s Gate 3. Mae then uses another trick to end the game quickly: they activate Gale’s chest bomb, which kills everyone in the vicinity, including themselves and the Absolute. This also causes everyone who has an illithid tadpole in their brain (which is everyone in Mae’s party) to turn into mind flayers. The game then rolls the credits, marking the end of Mae’s speedrun.
A Record-Breaking Achievement
Mae’s speedrun is impressive not only for its speed, but also for its creativity and humor. They exploited a major bug in the game that was probably not intended by the developers, Larian Studios. They also showed how Gale can be used to end the game prematurely, as he has a special ability that can trigger an early ending.
Mae’s speedrun is also the fastest one recorded so far for Baldur’s Gate 3. The previous record was held by Palmer, who completed the game in 10 minutes and three seconds using a similar strategy. However, Mae managed to shave off almost six minutes from Palmer’s time by using Shadowboxing.
It is possible that Larian Studios will patch out some of these exploits in future updates, as they have done before with other speedrunning tricks. However, for now, Mae’s speedrun stands as a testament to the ingenuity and skill of Baldur’s Gate 3 speedrunners.