"A dragon weapon symbolizing Darkeater Midir."
Best katana in the game, a reward for beating what FROM considers to be the ultimate souls challenge. And yet, all you need to do is hop over to r/summonsign to see people every single day asking for help against Midir. Worse, people who don't even bother and get it from karmaholics on r/pumpurum.
I guess I'm in no small part to blame, as I've helped more than 20 people against Midir (usually telling them to just sit back and survive while I take him on). But I was using this weapon today and it suddenly dawned on me: a lot of the people I see using this might have never actually beaten Midir properly: solo, with no cheese (looking at you, pestilent camemberts: it shouldn't even be possible to cheese him that way). The weapon, meant to symbolize the conquering of a challenge, is now meaningless. A lot of games offer rewards for conquering tough challenges - rewards that immediately distinguish the people using them. When you look at them, they mean more than what you see: they represent a prize for your efforts. Sadly, this is not the case.
Following a bit of the souls gained logic, I think you shouldn't be allowed to convert the boss' soul to 1 of 2 items or, in special cases, one of the items would always be inaccessible (it if is very, very good) if you beat it with help. Of course people would cry for days and I do realize that DS3, of all souls games, is the last where they would ever do this, but it would be fair: yes, you beat the boss - but no, you don't get the exact same rewards as you would for soloing him. The difference in souls gained is meaningless and can be covered by just putting on the mimic's head, wearing a ring and using a shield while you eat popcorn and the phantoms finish the job for you.
And now I hop on the arena and my opponent is using a frayed blade. I know him: I helped him (if I hadn't done it, 3 other guys would have - at least I got to fight Midir again). No one will ever erase the fact that I no damage Midir while my opponent has never beaten him - that much is obvious; but there is no denying that, at the end of the day, save for that consolation, we both got the same rewards for a very noticeable difference in effort.
Yes, the feeling of conquering the challenge is what counts the most. But other games give you not only that but something "material". That should have been the case here. No trading certain weapons, no ultimate rewards for not conquering the ultimate challenge.