Glossary - Speedrun

Speedrun refers to a term that is used to describe the action of finishing a single level or a whole video game in a record amount of time. The goal of it is to complete the action as fast as possible. Even though most speedruns are aimed at finishing an event quickly, some players might also add other goals to achieve during the gameplay. These goals might be things like getting all of the collectibles or playing the game blindfolded. 

The main goal of a speedrun can be to beat a world record, entertain, challenge, or even to compete with other speedrunners. The people who undertake such gameplays are called speedrunners and, most of the time, record their attempts. There are many reasons why speedrunners record their gameplays. The main reason behind this is to either verify their completions, certify the following of rules, entertain viewers, and even to find the ways of improving the times further through exploring game design elements. 

Using glitches to speedrun

A speedrun is often performed by exploiting glitches within a video game. Using these glitches, speedrunners can pass through levels without fully completing them. The best example of using glitches to speedrun games was set in the historic game Super Mario 64. In the game, Mario, which the main character, would need to collect at least 70 of the 120 power stars to face the final boss Bowser. Some gamers found a glitch in the game that allowed players to reach the last level by collecting only 16 stars. Players discovered that using the right movement patterns, it’s possible to push through the boundaries of the game wall. They did this by holding on a character called MIPS, which is an NPC rabbit. 

After this discovery, players had found other tricks to complete the whole game without the need to collect all of the stars. Using this trick, speedrunners were able to finish the game in record amounts of time. The action of exploiting bugs and glitches in games to speedrun them is often seen as a contrary act. But since the activities are visible in recordings, and most speedrunners state the conditions, the practice has attracted its audiences.