"Breath of the Wild" in under 30 minutes? "Resident Evil 2" in under an hour?
Let's be honest video games are no cheap thrill.
So for most of us, when we get up the gumption to throw $65 at a game, we expect to be able to bask in its world for hours on end. When I played The Witcher 3 for the first time, I indulged in as many of the game's whopping 180 hours that I could manage.
But some people are all about speed and precision. "How quickly can I actually rip through every level in Mario Kart 64?" they would ask themselves. Well, there is a name for this upper echelon gamer.
They are known in the gaming community as "Speedrunners," and for obvious reasons. Their only goal is to get through a game as fast as humanly possible. Here are some of the most accomplished speedrunners and their fastest playthroughs in gaming.
"The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time" – Less Than 8 Minutes
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time remains one of the most popular games to speedrun, thanks to its insane glitches and wild movement mechanics. The game is easily manipulated, so to speak, so speedrunners have long tackled the game in the hopes of achieving the fastest playthrough. But the current record is held by gamer Zudu, who beat the game in just under 8 minutes. To those unfamiliar with the game, what transpires in the video above looks like absolute nonsense, but is actually use of sophisticated coding and manipulation.
Zudu beat the game by combining the Stale Reference Manipulation, which allows certain glitches to overwrite Ocarina's memory, and two coding functions called Function Pointer Manipulation and Aritrary Code Execution. All together, Zudu used these inputs to crush the game in 7 minutes 48 seconds.
"Dark Souls" – 1 hour
Dark Souls is known to be one of the toughest and bruising games in history, but speedrunner Catalyst makes it look easy breezy. In just under one hour, Catalyst indulged in a handful of sequence breaks in order to get some of Dark Souls most coveted materials that would help him reach each level's final boss quickly and efficiently. He then used what's called the moveswap glitch that doubles his weapons' damage, thanks to increased speed time. All in all, he cuts through each boss like butter for a final playtime of one hour 47 seconds.
"Pokémon Red" –1 hour 45 minutes
Accomplished by a gamer fittingly known as pokeguy, this unstoppable gamer beat Pokémon Red in just one hour and 45 glitchless minutes. That's right, pokeguy used no sort of game modifiers; he just beat it cold turkey while on regular settings.
Pokeguy focused on his Nidoking and leveled him up aggressively to the point where his brute force was enough to overpower any Pokémon that stood in his way. He would implement instant K.O. moves like Earthquake and Horndrill, and just be on his way. It's truly impressive to watch.
"Resident Evil 2" – 52 minutes 10 seconds
Resident Evil games, in general, offer a rank based on their playthrough, so it makes sense that competitive speedrunners would be drawn to the survival horror franchise. For Resident Evil's second outing, speedrunner 7rayD still holds the record for an immaculate 52 minutes 10 seconds.
What's most impressive is that the gamer merely used his know-how with the game and its coinciding puzzles in order to rip through it — oh, that and Leon's trusty knife. 7raD was playing the game on PC, so by being able to reach a higher frame rate than consoles, the gamer was able to slice his way through the game very, very quickly.
"Super Mario 64" – 1 hour 38 minutes
Accomplished by one of the most famous speedrunners of all time, Cheese crushed Super Mario 64 in just one hour 38 minutes, a record set in 2017 that hasn't been broken since. We're talking 100% completed in that time, meaning Cheese collected all 120 stars.
Cheese also showed himself to be a master of timing. At one point in the playthrough, the gamer executed a perfect jump and collected the star at the bottom of the "Slip Slidin' Away" level in just 20 seconds. Call it luck or call it skill, regardless of what you think it's perfectly timed moments like these that make his time extremely difficult to beat.
"Portal" – Under 7 Minutes
Due to the game's multifaceted portal gun, Portal has been another fantastic go-to for speedrunners. Shizzal still holds the fastest record at under six minutes and 53 seconds, and he did it by tossing in a handful of Edgeglitches that disconnected the camera from his body.
In doing this, it let Shizzal shoot portals all over the place and position them in crazy ways, so he just soars through the game's chambers unphased. He also had a great understanding of the game's map, which helped immensely.
"The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild" – Less than 30 minutes
It's mind-boggling to imagine anyone being able to rip through BOTW's complex story and massive map in under a couple hours. Sure, players could technically just head straight to Hyrule Castle and face Ganon, but why would they? For most of us, doing that would amount to instant death. But Sketodara01417 decided "fuck it" and tore through the whole game in just under 27 minutes 29 seconds.
The gamer implements moves like whistle, sprinting to constantly keep running without draining his stamina bar, and shield clipping to allow him to pass through walls. Thanks to these and a handful of other tactile moves, Sketodara01417 was able to defeat Gannon in nothing more than Link's boxer shorts.