Esports at the expense of what one might think are much more than simple challenges between gamers. In the vast world that surrounds competitive video games there are different disciplines a bit like the world of athletics. Today we will talk about one of the most popular eSports disciplines: the speedrun . Its purpose is to complete a game in the shortest time possible . It is, just like in athletics, about setting the world record for completing a particular video game.
Speedrun is one of the most followed eSports disciplines, many fans remain glued to the screen from the beginning to the end of the game. It must be said that in practice there are for every type of video game. On the site speedrun.com there are the world records of many titles for both console and PC, in addition to the record time there are videos of the performances and useful guides for those who want to try their hand. The large amount of titles present, especially retro games, means that the speedrun is loved by all generations.
Features of speedruns
These real speed races follow general rules according to their type. Basically there are two different types of this specialty: the “any%” and the “full%”. The any% mode basically indicates a speedrun whose purpose is to finish the game in the shortest time possible regardless of the percentage of completion. Otherwise in full% the aim is to finish the game 100% thus completing the game in its entirety. These are the two main macro-categories that somehow are found in every game. There are then, depending on the title in question, other types of speedrun. For some games, for example, we talk about “zone%”or races in which you have to finish the game up to a certain area. Other speedruns instead differ according to the difficulty chosen for the game. The concept of glitches in speedruns deserves a separate discussion.
Glitches in speedruns
Already talking about the most used terms in eSports slang we had seen some words related to game errors and tricks. The terms that constantly accompany speedruns also include “glitch” which literally means “technical problem” . The glitches in games are basically code errors , the holes that gamers exploit to stem the normal course of the game. For example, there are glitches that allow you to pass a level immediately in a certain way, in some games you can go beyond some wallsin particular places when you shouldn’t. Among the most common glitches there are also those that allow you to avoid all the shots of the bosses in the games and beat them immediately.
Because of the glitches, speedruns can therefore be divided into the category that allows the abuse of glitches and the one in which they are not allowed. The existence of glitches isn’t just as common in retro games as you’d expect. Even the most recent titles often hide particular glitches , in some cases it is the developers themselves who leave them on purpose. Among the recent titles that contain it is for example Cuphead , the game has had a great success and is one of those that sees more active players in speedruns even today. Knowledge of glitches and their use has resulted in world speed records for some truly stunning games. Some titles usually complete in several hours while it takes a few minutes using the glitches.
The speedrun mentality
Anyone who has ever witnessed a speedrun has certainly noticed that it is a truly competitive discipline . The categorical rule is one: don’t waste time . In fact, in the mentality of this competition, any action is carried out with the sole intention of finishing the game first. As we “mortals” are used to playing, seeing ignored bananas in a game of Donkey Kong would surely leave us stunned. Yet the speedrun somehow breaks the traditional patterns of games. These are real races against time and that is why the players must be sent to the endwithout ever stopping to pick up useless items. Those who are experienced in speedrun know the game by heart in every detail, position of obstacles, timing of monsters and more efficient movements to perform. All of this has a kind of “magical” effect that keeps us glued to watch the clock go by and the characters go by.
The most iconic speedrun games
Surely the most iconic game of all when it comes to speedrun is Super Mario 64 . The Nintendo game was one of the most loved and at the same time criticized titles ever. It is currently the title with the most players active daily in speedruns, just think that just six days ago the new world record was set in full%. Another iconic title is still one of the Mario series and is Super Mario World . Its success is linked to the speedruns done completely in the dark blindfolded . You might not believe it yet there are those who managed to complete Super Mario World blindfolded in 15 minutesand the same happens for other games, this type of speedrun is called “blindfolded”.
Among the most significant titles of this specialty, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time certainly deserves a particular mention . A game that in recent times, thanks to the Nintendo Switch, even the new generations have come to know. Relevant in the speedruns of Zelda you can see the series of levels played by going backwards using a glitch in the game. The most recent title that today is among the most played in speedrun is Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice . The game is a dynamic adventure developed by FromSoftware and which, particularly on Twitch , sees many streamers attempting to break the world record every day.