Every week the EFG staff will be defining a gaming term that is either confusing or ill-defined. Please leave a comment with any terms you are confused by and we will try to include them in future editions!
This week we are going to define the term “Speed Running.” Awesome Games Done Quick is a week long charity marathon where speed runners from all over the country come together to play. The event starts on January 7th so it makes sense that we take a moment to actually explain what the heck they are doing!
Speed running a video game is the act of attempting to complete a game, in whole or in part, as fast as physically possible.
Anyone can speed run a game the same way that anyone can play basketball or baseball, but only a special few will be able to complete a video game and hold a world record. This can take preternatural reflexes, countless hours of study, and hundreds if not thousands of hours of practice.
Below is a YouTube video that was filmed live as the current world record holder for Super Mario Bros. earned his record. Most of these world records are not caught live thanks to streaming services like YouTube and Twitch, so large communities of fans have built up around some of the great players.
One of the hallmarks of speed running is the quest for glitches. These are points in the game where players are able to break the normal sequence of game play and gain some time.