Speedrunning has become a very popular subculture of video games. Watching people complete games with frame-perfect precision, or even glitch the game’s physics to shed a few milliseconds off their time makes for a thrilling experience. While you can find a quality speedrun for almost any game, some are inevitably more enjoyable to watch than others – whether it be the quality of gameplay, the commentary, the atmosphere, or some combination of the three.
We’ve gathered five of the best, most interesting speedruns for your viewing pleasure. Check them out!
1. Borderlands 2 – AGDQ 2014
If you’re thinking of introducing someone into speedrunning, this is often cited as one of the go-to examples. The four players here are masters of their craft, and with the actual game developers commenting on the game as it’s being cleared, you gain another layer of insight into what developers are thinking, as well as how the speedrunners exploit the game’s mechanics. With good commentary, audience reactions, and outstanding gameplay, this is the perfect sample piece of what great speedrunning truly is.
2. “The Super Marihour Challenge”
Got an hour to kill before you have to be somewhere? Just complete six different Mario games, you fool! A speedrunner known as “darbian” attempted what’s known as the “Super Marihour Challenge,” where the speedrunner must clear Super Mario Bros, The Lost Levels, Super Mario Bros 2, Super Mario Bros 3, Super Mario World, and Super Mario 64 in less than an hour. As if that isn’t daunting enough, every game must be played on its original hardware – no using emulators to switch up between games. What follows is some of the cleanest platforming gameplay you’ll ever see.
3. Breath of the Wild Any% – Orcastraw
Orcastraw rose to fame with her amazing speedruns and videos on the new game The Legend of Zelda game: Breath of the Wild. One of her more famous videos is her beating the game in less than 40 minutes. While the open-world concept of this Zelda game would have most people sinking dozens if not hundreds of hours into exploring the vast land of Hyryle, Orcastraw is having none of it – armed with the bare necessities, she pushes the game to its limit and clears it in record time. Peep this monster speedrun and watch a game get picked apart.
4. SGDQ 2014 Tomba 2 Speedrun
This speedrun is interesting for multiple reasons…not all of them related to gameplay. While CavemanDCJ does a quality job of running through this PlayStation platforming classic, it’s only one aspect of this legendary speedrun. Summer Games Done Quick can have people joining the couch along with the speedrunner, and it’s never clear what kind of character you’ll get on the microphone. The young man here, Chibi, couldn’t have been a greater choice in hindsight – his presence made this speedrun one of the most hilarious, cringe-inducing, and memorable runs in history. It’s a treat to watch…if you can endure it.
5. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time – Cosmo
In the early days of speedrunning, Cosmo was without equal, clearing multiple games in record time. Probably the best example of this is Cosmo’s speedrun of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time – beating the game in less than 20 minutes. Check it out – it’s visually cathartic and Cosmo’s commentary explains how certain aspects of the game can be abused to yield this otherwise absurd completion time.
Which of these fine speedruns interested you the most? Know of one that you think should’ve been on the list? Let us know in the comments below!