Only two and a half hours after going live, Destiny 2’s latest raid, Root of Nightmares, was first conquered by a relatively unknown team of underdogs called Team Hard in the Paint.
Raids are Destiny’s ultimate endgame challenge, which involve six players working together to figure out complicated mechanics and execute them to perfection, all while avoiding being killed by hordes of enemies and powerful bosses alike. For many years, Bungie has observed the launch of their raids by hosting official “World First Races,” which document the first team to beat these dastardly gauntlets.
Bungie confirmed the world first victory, writing, “Guardians from around the world fought against an ancient threat in the Root of Nightmares raid this weekend during the World First raid race. A massive congratulations to Team Hard in the Paint for emerging victorious. As the first team to both beat the raid and the additional challenges, all six members will receive World First title belts and will forever be known as the World First Champions of Root of Nightmares.”
For the past couple of raid releases, the same team, Clan Elysium, has claimed victory, including last year’s Vow of the Disciple. Several other top contenders and previous winning teams were also highly watched on Twitch Rivals as part of the contest. The winner though, as it turned out, included a group of small content creators and speedrunners whose streams had far fewer viewers until it became clear they were on pace to win it all.
One such speedrunner, RoenXD, has only 9K followers on Twitch even after his team’s victory, a testament to his crew’s underdog status.
IGN reached out to RoenXD shortly after his raid accomplishments, who said of the victory: “It’s still pretty surreal because it’s been a long time goal of ours to achieve this. My team are the greatest friends I could ask for, and this is for sure one of the highlights of our lives. We prepared a lot for this raid and gave it our best, and it paid off.”
Rip out the nightmares, root and stem.
Congratulations to the World First Destiny 2 #RootofNightmares winners, Team Hard in the Paint:
💠 Grangalf pic.twitter.com/jjnVV8rQdR
— Destiny 2 (@DestinyTheGame) March 10, 2023
Reacting to the surprise victory, commenters chimed in on Twitter to praise the winning team’s impressive speed, or to bemoan or celebrate the loss of competing teams.
Since Destiny 2: Lightfall’s debut last week, unfavorable reactions to the expansion and lots of bugs have cast a shadow over the long-running looter shooter, a fact that’s reflected in IGN’s own review in progress. However, there appear to have been few technical issues during today’s raid race, a marked improvement over last year, which may be just the morale boost the Destiny community needs.
No matter who you were rooting for, this is a gaming underdog story for the ages. And who doesn’t love a good underdog story?
Travis Northup is a writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter @TieGuyTravis and read his games coverage here.