Bananas, pianos, and one finger: the 7 most ridiculous Dark Souls controllers

Ready for the understatement of the decade? Here is it: Dark Souls is famous for being hard. Very hard, in fact. Some people have trouble beating its games with an ordinary controller. Others are happy to vanquish the final boss of any three games with no armour, no dodging, and no rolling. An infinitesimal amount of these insanely dedicated players decide to make it even harder for themselves by using controllers that some would say are madness incarnate. Some. We’re basking in their glory, as you can’t really deny the majesty of someone thrashing Dark Souls with a banana. No, we’re not making that up. Read on for the most ridiculous things we could find that people have wired up to any of Dark Souls’ games and got gud with!

Fishing rod

There’s no fish in sight, but that didn’t deter ATwerkingYoshi from getting out a fishing rod and eventually reeling in a win against Dark Souls 3’s Abyss Watchers. Good news is that it’s basically an odd-shaped Xbox controller, so it’s not too hard to master if any of you brave souls want to give it a try. Using the analog stick to move around and the trigger to roll, he deftly avoids (most) of their attacks. The only problem is that the reel starts to spin when he gets hit, resulting in a random set of movements which are clearly super fun when you’re trying to avoid blades and very determined enemies. Sometimes spinning the reel will turn the camera left; other times it’ll move the camera around constantly - so that’s why he’s holding onto it for dear life in the video. 

Upside Down

Guaranteed to make your brain do a double-take, LobrosJr flipped the screen upside down for one of his many Dark Souls playthroughs. Using a tweaked version of the Mirror mod he makes his way through the dingy stone corridors and has to mentally remap the controller as everything is in reverse. Using a different controller is one thing, but having to literally retrain your brain to do every movement backwards is a feat that’s as impressive as it is difficult. Not that anyone who plays Dark Souls is adverse to difficulty. Like, at all. 

Steering wheel

No, this controller doesn’t include a modded-in car. You can probably guess how the steering wheel works when our pal ATwerkingYoshi tried it out: abruptly turn to the left or right with the Wiimote and behold, The Ashen One moves from side to side. You can guess how the Wiimote controls are modded slightly to work for Dark Souls, and one would suspect ATwerkingYoshi has quite a bit of practise at navigating Rainbow Road, as his motions are pretty darn precise. 

Voice controls

Screaming aloud when you don’t pay quite enough attention to an enemy and get sliced in the back is one thing. Having enough discipline to use your voice to move around The Cursed Undead is something completely different, especially when it involves having enough restraint to resist frustration creeping in - yet gbbearzly managed it. Using a carefully-constructed toolkit of voice commands, his microphone is surprisingly adept at making sure he doesn’t die. 

Bananas

Just FYI: a banana is not a valid replacement for a gaming controller. Do not go rifling through your fruit bowl if your controller runs out of juice. However, despite it being widely acknowledged that food is made to be eaten, ATwerkingYoshi decided to hook one up to Dark Souls 3 - and somehow managed it! With a setup of 10 different bananas, each one is allotted a specific function: varying camera angle, movement, or attack. As the bit of fruit conducts electricity, all you have to do is plug it into a circuit board with some alligator clips, connect it to the computer, and voilà! You’ve got a controller. A slightly squishy one, but a controller nonetheless. 

Drums

Usually the feverish beat of a drum indicates that a killer rock song is on the way, or a carnival is about to begin. Not in this case. Gbbearzly worked his magic again and this time turned a set of drums into a way of controlling his jaunt around Anor Londo. Creating a helpful guide about how it works, it’s pretty simple - the foot pedal moves him forward, with the drums to his left controlling which direction the camera moves. Two drums on his right let him roll and attack. If you want to give this a try, be warned: doing a sick drum solo is a pronounced side effect. 

Motion controls

Let’s hope wrist safety straps are being used here: it’s our pal ATwerkingYoshi using two motion controllers from the Wii to add a little dose of authenticity to his playthrough. Swinging the Wiimote lets him swipe his sword from side to side, while moving the nunchuck makes him roll across Anor Londo’s stony floors. Considering the Wii made an entire console centred around getting the most out of this pair of controllers it’s hardly surprising that it works with other games.