Yesterday, on December 5, a day that will go down in history, Redditor Appalachias-Hero shared their plight with the Old School Runescape subreddit. They were killed by other players in the Wilderness while attempting to kill the Chaos Elemental boss, and they shared a screenshot of their final moments. In the hours since, the OSRS community has served up one of the funniest, most savage roasts in PC gaming history, and reader, my face hurts from laughing.
You could not write a scene that better captures the spirit of Old School Runescape or its infamous Wilderness, a free-for-all PvP zone that's still pretty unique among MMORPGs. The Helms of Neitiznot, the blue mystic getup, the smite thrown in with overhead prayers, the Chaos Elemental just happy to be included – this image belongs in a museum. There is no clearer snapshot of this game, this playable time capsule, and the era of gaming it represents.
Appalachias-Hero, or D3M0N SL4Y3R in-game, has become an OSRS icon overnight. Their final words, a hastily typed and misspelled "Pleae" have become an anthem. They are currently the face of the OSRS subreddit (opens in new tab), and the jokes are only getting more brutal.
We've got the stone-cold classics.
The artist interpretations.
pleae from r/2007scape
Then came the cropped images, with barbs that cut deep.
This goes on and on and on, and the comment sections on each post are pure gold. D3M0N SL4Y3R has reached water cooler status. Every OSRS player has been or will be D3M0N SL4Y3R at some point, so countless players are rallying around his unfortunate tale to riff on OSRS humor and share their own nooby stories.
Every bone in my body told me to reach out to D3M0N SL4Y3R, the undisputed star of this show. To my immense delight, they actually got back to me.
Despite their bad luck with pkers, D3M0N SL4Y3R was actually quite fortunate at the Chaos Elemental, securing a valuable dragon pickaxe on just their third kill. "It was pretty awesome," they said of their lucky payday. "I’m used to [King Black Dragon] but one day decided that I wanted Chaos pet and 1/300 sounded a lot more convincing even with the higher risk."
That dragon pick more than pays for their death, which they say only cost them some cheap Proselyte armor and the food and potions in their inventory. That death was worth it for the Reddit post and its aftermath, too.
"The comments are hilarious too, and the memes even better," they said. "My favorite one is the beans," they add, referring to the more abstract post from pkermanbad up above.
I asked how long they've been playing Old School Runescape, and their history with the game will sound familiar to a lot of players. "I’ve played since '08-ish but lost email to my Yahoo and couldn’t recover," they explain, pulling me right back to my own pre-EOC days of Yahoo logins. "In about 2017 some buddies I used to work with played and got me back into it. And from 2020 to about three months ago I had taken a break."
Not wanting to waste this invaluable interview time, I also asked about their current goals in the game. OSRS is about creating and overcoming your own challenges, and D3M0N SL4Y3R's roadmap is looking good. They've bumped up their quest points and are now working on boosting their Slayer level so they can take on Abyssal Sire. But they'll keep coming back to the Chaos Elemental in the hopes of getting that pet drop. And despite their death, they say they're still a fan of the Wilderness and wouldn't have it any other way.
"I haven’t really been too involved in the community when it comes to updates, I just ride along and see where things go," they say. "On the PvP/PK side of things, I don’t mind or have any issues with it at all. I think it adds a nice adrenaline rush to whenever you’re in the wilderness, because anything can happen."
OSRS is still going strong, though it did just suffer its biggest server outage on record.