World record Minecraft hardcore run killed after five years by a baby zombie

Philza's five year run came to a tragic end

Minecraft’s hardcore mode works just as you’d expect it to from other games. When you die, that’s it – no retries, respawns, or reloads. Streamer Philza holds the world record for the longest run in Minecraft hardcore, but that run came to a fiery but disappointing end last week, five years after it began.

Philza’s death came down to bad luck and bit of panic. You can see the clip in full over on Twitch, but basically he gets caught in a cavern fight, gets rushed by a baby zombie, takes a hit from an errant spider, and dies. Philza was wearing Elytra wings – which take up the normally protective armour slot – so he had less defense than normal, and his flaming sword kept setting other enemies on fire, which only added to the damage he was taking.

After the fact, stream viewers suggested plenty of ways Philza could’ve survived, as Polygon notes. He had a golden apple item that would’ve restored his health. He could’ve set down a water bucket to block off the approach of the enemies.

Philza says panic kept him from making the right decisions. We’ve all been there, but most of us haven’t had multi-year records come down as a result of our poor gaming decisions.

You can enjoy a full tragedy in the space of 33 seconds through the clip above.

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There’s a silver lining for other hardcore Minecraft players out there, though. Now that this five year run has ended, there’s actually a hope of catching up and setting a new record yourself. It’ll just take, uh, five years to get there.