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News from October through December, 2008. [Newer | Older]

Tuesday, December 30, 2008 by Enhasa

Intermission

I wanted to include a run or two in this update to prevent it from being so disappointing, but there aren't any ready for publication at the moment. Sorry about that.

This update is to let you know what's going on in the near future. As some of you already know, SDA is having its first-ever modern get-together at MAGFest this year, where we will be presenting a panel. Come support us in person if you can make it! Since everyone on staff will be there, the next update will probably be afterwards, around January 8 or so. We also won't be responding to any communication while we're there. Don't worry though! dex will make a Quake post in several days to satisfy your speedrunning lust.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008 by Enhasa

More Mega Men

Most observers felt that Sattik 'Tiki' Ghosh already had the Mega Man 3 bounty solidified, but his latest run likely removes any doubt. His newest time is 0:37:06 and sports vast improvements and button-mashing skills that make some of the hapless YouTubers cry foul. Sattik's speedrun beats his prior one by 35 seconds, and it also obsoletes Freddy 'Frezy_man' Andersson's old run on the slower European version in 0:45:08. In a developing trend, Sattik has again included audio commentary with his run, and this time his friend Matt Glasell joins in on the action. Be warned: this commentary is not for the faint at heart.

To go with the old Mega Man game, we also have a run for the game that looks like an old Mega Man game. Steven 'Master ZED' Ellis has disassembled Mega Man 9 in 0:21:37 (torrent), a massive three minutes and eleven seconds faster than Chris 'Satoryu' Kirk's run. At the time this run was recorded, it ranked 4th on the Wii leaderboard; that's highly remarkable given that everyone else's times were achieved essentially as segmented New Game + runs. Despite what you might think, progress on this game still has a long ways to go. Steven himself is regularly improving on his times, and other SDA runners such as Matt Pine and, yes, Sattik Ghosh are also preparing for this record.

Friday, December 19, 2008 by Enhasa

Magical Fantasy Adventure

There are numerous versions of Resident Evil, all with their particular quirks. Once again we have a submission for BioHazard, the Japanese release, and this time there won't be any unfortunate rules misunderstandings due to language barriers. The Japanese version has some nice benefits, and Wes 'Carcinogen' Kempton utilizes them to produce a single-segment 100% run as Jill in 1:22:40. This run was recorded at a LAN party, of all places, which shows that runners can be hit by the speedrunning jones at any moment. Wes includes audio commentary with his run, recorded by him and his friend Josh Mason, so listen up if you know what's good for you.

The second run in this update is for a Falcom game through and through, an action RPG in the vein of the Ys or Dragon Slayer series. It's Popful Mail, starring a heroine of the same name. Elijah 'scaryice' Miller follows up his Lunar: The Silver Star run with yet another Working Designs localization for the Sega CD. His run is single-segment and finishes in 1:26:13. This feat is even more impressive because at almost every point in the run, death occurs from two hits at full health. Popful Mail encourages speedrunning, and the best rank and all outtakes are available upon beating the game in under five hours. Do the math and Elijah's ratio is even better than the current Metroid run.

Monday, December 15, 2008 by Enhasa

Beast

The community has been awaiting a speedrun like this for quite a long time — almost an entire decade, in fact. And now Maciej 'groobo' Maselewski stands before you today and delivers. The game is none other than Quake II. Mr. Maselewski's Hard mode 0:19:33 (torrent, HQ torrent) is in exactly 43 segments for that authentic Quake feeling. The Quake II page has been brought kicking and screaming into the present, and the casualties are Quake2 done Quick too on Hard in 0:21:06 and Mad Dash 2 by Colin "Mr M" Moore on Easy in 0:20:33. Let's hear it for bunnies and hopping.

This next game is fairly obscure, but that's just how we like it here at SDA. Let's give a hearty welcome to Laszlo Seta. On Bronze mode as the Daemon, Laszlo goes to camp on 2005's Sacred Underworld, the expansion to Sacred. He hacks and slashes to a final time of 1:37:56 in 26 segments, utilizing various refinements that were slowly accumulated since 2007. Maybe someone will be up to the task of playing as a character without the mark of the beast for the next run. Sacred Underworld suffered sales-wise from being developed by some company not named Blizzard, but you can get a taste of what it's all about if you watch Laszlo's run.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008 by Enhasa

Beauty

Today's first speedrun marks the comeback of Adam 'No1 Inparticular' Young, who reclaims a record that was once his. It's the appropriately-named 100-man brawl of Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Adam brings the time down to 0:01:42.66, a decrease of almost five seconds that is tremendous for a run this short. But wait, an encore! Adam has also done the 10-man brawl in 0:00:07.43, which is a new category for the game page. But we're still not done brawling for today! SDA newbie Simon 'SW-1988' Wahler has a run of the boss battles in 0:00:39.25, cutting away almost a third of the previous run. That's ridiculous no matter how you slice it.

The other run is for a Dungeons & Dragons game that isn't by Bioware or Black Isle. Instead it's Westwood's Eye of the Beholder, their first early success before they eventually became best known for Command & Conquer. Daniel 'Cromarty' Enright didn't run the DOS version, however, but the Capcom port to the SNES. He determined that the pad actually controlled better than the SNES mouse, so he padded along to a time of 0:17:04. One of the most interesting parts of this run is the strong biblical flavor of the chosen character names. If you think about it, a lot of those guys had names of four letters or less that made them suitable for old RPGs.

Saturday, December 6, 2008 by Enhasa

Command & Conker

This update was supposed to contain some Command & Conquer, but the run was rejected. As you can see, this minor technicality had no visible effect on the update title.

Instead of C&C, the game you're getting in its place is Pitfall: The Mayan Adventure. The Mayans did their fair share of conquering, I suppose. Ruben 'Fliperotchy' Villegas, a newcomer to SDA, is the runner of this game. Anyone who has met him will agree that Ruben certainly does not lack for enthusiasm, impatience, or self-confidence. He mixed these attributes together in a blender and the result is a Hard mode 0:13:09 done on the SNES. We're retaining Tommy Montgomery's slower run on the Genesis version, because the SNES version has major glitches that allow you to skip entire boss fights.

In retrospect, the funniest part of Conker's Bad Fur Day is Conker taking a chainsaw to the N64 logo and replacing it with the Rare logo. Who doesn't love a little historical humor? Speaking of which, Derek 'SnapDragon' Kisman's 2:10:32 from May 2001 was itself a historical artifact. As far as I know, it was the oldest console speedrun on SDA. It's had a long stay, but finally Karl 'Normand' Grenier has sent it to the retirement home with his first publication, a single-segment 1:37:59. Let's have a moment of silence for SnapDragon, whose soul was consumed first by the World of Warcraft and then Gamerscore hunting.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008 by Enhasa

MM6

We have two runs of MM6 today. However, they represent two very different games. The distinction is far from academic; the speedrunners of these games have thoroughly confused each other on both the forum and IRC by using the same ambiguous abbreviation. Hijinks ensued.

The first of these games, and probably the easier one to deduce, is Mega Man 6. Oh right, it was made even easier by the fact that I alluded to this run's existence a couple of weeks ago. There's less than a month to go, and wee Sattik 'Tiki' Ghosh is already planning an Uncle Scrooge-style vault with which to hold the $600 he is soon to collect — I think he enjoys swimming in pennies. Sattik's current time is now 0:36:45. That's 51 seconds better than Jim 'vgmrsepitome' Hanson's run, but the ever-defiant Sattik is still trying to improve his time because that's the speedrunning way.

The other game is Might and Magic VI: The Mandate of Heaven, SDA's first listed game in the series. I didn't know this until just now, but it turns out that Might and Magic and Heroes of Might and Magic are actually different series. (I used to think people were just too lazy to say the "Heroes of" part every time.) In any case, we now have our first run from this entire collection of games, courtesy of Landon Leo 'Xiaoyazhi' Tan, who hails from Singapore. His maiden speedrun obtains the good ending in 0:42:20 (torrent) using 44 segments. I must admit that I don't know anything about this game, but I do know that the verifiers were extremely impressed.

Saturday, November 29, 2008 by Enhasa

Unbreakable

Years later, Nicholas 'Sir VG' Hoppe returns to his old stomping grounds: Legend of Mana. Updates on this game used to appear frequently, so it seems hard to imagine that it's been so long since the last iteration. But, time flows like a river... and history repeats. The single-segment Dragon path time now stands at 1:58. That doesn't sound like much of an improvement if you remember the old time of 1:58:11, but it's really around twelve minutes faster. The difference is that the previous runs didn't show the post-game timer, but this one does. Apparently the biggest route change this time was to play SaGa Frontier II first. I'm serious.

Many a Mega Man fan is in utter awe at the skills of Seth Glass; Sattik 'Tiki' Ghosh even holds him in higher esteem than he does Chuck Norris and other various superheroes. After Seth's previous Mega Man 2 run went up, viewers unanimously clamored to see the same level of play, only this time exploiting glitches such as zipping and the pause trick. It's time for everyone to rejoice, as the reworked version is now down to an incredible 0:29:02, a whole minute and thirty-one seconds faster. For this new run, Mr. Glass has some of the least informative run comments ever, but since the actual product is so good, I'm sure you'll forgive him.

Thursday, November 27, 2008 by Enhasa

Are You There God? It's Me, Imoen.

Contra is an extremely manly game as is, but sometimes it seems that spread shot is just a tad too powerful. Perhaps it would be even more manly if the runner took everyone down with only the peashooter. Meet new alpha dog Jeremy 'DK28' Doll, not two weeks after his first submission was published on SDA. His low% 0:12:48, which replaces the previous 0:13:24 by Ray 'Croc-Doc' Cullen, is drowning in testosterone. Other than a subpar Base 1, the hits start off strong and keep on coming. Jeremy sacrificed his right thumb to finish this run, so be sure to pay your respects as you watch.

Eli 'Smilge' Chase makes quite a splash with his first run, which is a rather large improvement to an already great run. The game is Baldur's Gate II: Shadows of Amn, and the mage/thief class is now all the rage. Eli demonstrates its effectiveness with a 17-segment 0:41:31 (torrent) that obsoletes Dominic 'DAMURDOC' Legault's human sorcerer run by six minutes and eighteen seconds. Many of Dominic's strategies were reused here, so his continued presence is clearly felt. You can't help but feel sorry for the poor Infinity Engine as Eli works it over in countless twisted ways.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008 by Enhasa

I used to be a mech soldier

Today SDA gets its first MechWarrior speedrun, which also doubles as the first BattleTech run and triples as the first FASA run. It possibly even home runs as something else. The game in question, MechWarrior 4: Mercenaries, is the second and final follow-up to the original MechWarrior 4: Vengeance. MechWarrior 5 was canceled in 2003, so maybe Janis 'Pendrokar' Lukss is simply working his way backwards. Whatever the case, he currently has a 1:06:42 in 11 segments as the result of his work. Janis displays some large metal cojones near the end of this run and yet concludes with something like a tea party.

Today's other run is from a familiar face. The thing that separates Andrew Gardikis from other people is that while others (myself included) post about how they could handily beat the existing Marble Madness speedrun, Andrew just goes and does it. And thus the second shortest full-game run on all of SDA is slashed by nineteen seconds all the way down to 0:02:54. Considering that Elliott Feiertag's run was also deathless and very clean-looking, most observers figured that a time shaving of that magnitude was maybe not even possible. Andrew's achievement was to behave like a man with blatant disregard for his own marbles.

Sunday, November 23, 2008 by Enhasa

So easy, an ad agency can do it

I know some of you crazies out there pay attention to stuff like this, so let me acknowledge that this update stops a streak of 19 straight I've done with exactly two games each.

Cavemen have been slowly infiltrating the SDA ranks, and in this update, they take over yet another game page. They seem particularly bent on proving they can platform as well as any modern-day plumber. First Joe & Mac, now Chuck Rock, then a game you should probably be able to figure out since it stars the most famous platforming caveman of all. But back to the present. I admire anyone with eccentric tastes, and Marc J. 'Emptyeye' Dziezynski just keeps on delivering with the underdog speedruns. Apparently a fan of wrestling with his controls much like he wrestles crocodiles, Marc manages an impressive 0:11:55. The most impressive part is how he did this on an empty stomach.

Friday, November 21, 2008 by dex

Get your Quake on

Without beating around the bush: videos! 2 on id maps, 2 on custom maps. Because some people suggested having a second quality, all videos in this update have an additional HQ version. Also because some people suggested it, I've changed the weapon models to be more faithful to the original models.

Custom maps:

Oldie of the Update! Today's 'Oldie' is not an 'Oldie' at all. It's the fastest Easy Run on the first map in Quake - The Slipgate Complex (e1m1). It was submitted to our bunny comparison page by Jonathan Lenhardt a few months ago. However, it isn't the record on the map, because it didn't beat the earlier demo by Peter Horvath by an entire second. Despite that, Jonathan's demo deserves recognition for taking smoothness to the limit, so here it is: MQ, HQ, IQ.
Also, because there were less worthy demos this month, an extra Oldie. A history of how The Elder God Shrine (e4m3) Nightmare Run evolved - 3 demos. The first one from the era when bunnyhopping was not known by 'DooMfienD', the second one from Markus Taipale, and the current record by the one, the only... Peter Horvath! The last one is a real treat. Get MQ or HQ.

Remember, everyone is welcome to start running Quake. Drop by our IRC channel (#qdq on irc.quakenet.org), and we'll help you in your speedrunning endeavours. There're plenty of maps to run for everyone. :)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008 by Enhasa

Mega Men

You got upgrade!

Today's first big upgrade is on Mega Man II for Game Boy. Jonathan 'Brightstar' Fields's speedrun from way back in April 2004 was significant as the first Mega Man run ever to be posted on SDA. Not to make too much of a point of it, but this 0:25:46 had gained some infamy as being one of the runs that people most wanted to see obsoleted. Some had beaten the old time handily, but they never submitted because they weren't yet satisfied. Patrik 'Cremator' Salonen finally makes these distant dreams a reality with a gigantic improvement of over five minutes, for a final time of 0:20:07.

The other upgrade today is for a game whose competition is heating up as 2008 draws to a close, with Freddy 'Frezy_man' Andersson's bounty closing along with it. Jim 'vgmrsepitome' Hanson strikes back at Sattik 'Tiki' Ghosh's 0:38:10 on Mega Man 6 with an improvement of thirty-four seconds. So at least for the moment, Jim's 0:37:36 stands tall, but several runners are known to be gunning for the new time, including Sattik himself. Sattik is such an expert speedrunner that he may have actually sequence broken this update with his next improvement, but that's a topic for another day.

Saturday, November 15, 2008 by Enhasa

Negasonic Teenage Warhead

Our first X-Men game goes up today with X-Men: Mutant Apocalypse for the SNES. Unlike most speedruns of games that allow you to select amongst a group of playable characters, this one maintains its variety by first forcing the player to use each of the five characters in earlier stages. So no matter who your favorite X-Men character is, new runner Jeremy 'DK28' Doll and his 0:19:06 have just the thing for you... as long you like Cyclops, Wolverine, Beast, Gambit, or Psylocke, at any rate. Jeremy exudes confidence throughout the run that he gained from each subsequent iteration, and I can tell just by the style.

Today's other run is also new to SDA. It's for the NES port of Dragon's Lair, which has somehow been released more than 50 times over the years. The 1990 NES port came out seven years after the original arcade release, and in the process, it lost all the high-quality animation and really most aspects about the game (including genre) and picked up quite a bit of infamy. You see, NES Dragon's Lair is absolutely notorious for being one of the most brutally difficult games of all time. Joakim 'Wizphix' Mäkipää's accomplishment of 0:06:56 on the European version has earned him accolades merely for beating the game deathless, let alone doing it quickly.

Thursday, November 13, 2008 by Enhasa

I got my Half-Life

Blake 'Spider-Waffle' Piepho has previously owned the Half-Life page all by himself, but not anymore. Welcome Daniel 'rayvex' Babik and his contribution to SDA. It's a new run on the grandfathered category, "Hazard course time with scripts on the HLSP Bunny mod." Daniel's time is 0:02:54, which is eleven seconds better than Blake's run. Of course, the state of the art in Half-Life running has greatly changed since 2004. Still, Daniel's comments are almost the exact same length as his predecessor's, and they also start off with the phrase, "There were some mistakes." I know that you don't care but I want you to know.

Freddy 'Frezy_man' Andersson is back again and all is right in the world. His latest speedrun is so powerful that it managed to obsolete both of the runs previously on the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Arcade Game page. The victims are Elliott Feiertag's 0:39:20 and Freddy's own 0:46:32 on the slower European version. Compared to those times, this 0:35:53 must seem almost unbelievable. To reach that level of difference, Freddy incorporated minor but constant refinements throughout the entirety of the game. Don't fret that the date of this run is from over a year ago; Freddy is hard at work as always in the speedrunning lab.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008 by Enhasa

Welcome to Domino's

Before I forget to mention this yet again, we have made it a priority to locate additional qualified verifiers in order to clear up some of the congestion in the verification thread. Mike has created a new dedicated verification board on the forum, and I have a more detailed evangelism thread that I ask you to please read. SDA needs you!

The Noid might not be a marketing icon that everyone still remembers, but trust me, he was ubiquitous back in the 80s. He even provoked an insane customer named Kenneth Noid, who thought the commercials were mocking him, to hold a local Domino's hostage. Join Andrew Gardikis in a slightly less deranged experience with a 0:22:40 run of Yo! Noid. Andrew proves once more that he will speedrun any game he really likes, no matter how popular or not, or even how many pizza battles are involved. In this brave new world of advertisement game speedruns, who knows what we will find? Maybe Cool Spot, Pepsiman, or McDonald's Treasureland Adventure?

In a fit of perverted genius, Capcom decided to produce a game that actually deserves to be called "retro." Probably no game has ever generated as much pre-release speedrunning excitement as Mega Man 9 has. The hunger of the masses is finally sated with Chris 'Satoryu' Kirk's run in 0:24:48 (torrent), which is several minutes faster than preliminary efforts by various runners. This game has attracted plenty of willing speedrunners, so don't expect this to be the end of Mega Man 9 running by a long shot. Fortunately for all of us, Chris likes to make audio commentaries, so crank it up for a more pleasurable experience.

Saturday, November 8, 2008 by Enhasa

Welcome to Silent Hill

The most recent Silent Hill contributions, two speedruns for Silent Hill 2 by Adam 'Introverder' Titowicz, were posted on SDA back in February 2007. After a bit of a delay, Adam's next run is here. It's for Silent Hill 3, the next game in Konami's long-standing series. Arriving to complement Adam 'Zhegan' Steidl's existing single-segment console run on Easy mode is the featured Adam's single-segment 0:41:07 (torrent) on the PC version, also Easy mode. Titowicz implemented some strategies from Steidl's run and came up with many of his own, such as route changes and shotgun usage, for a tremendous final time.

Easy mode seems to be a bit of a theme, applying to the next run as well. The prolific and ultra-skilled Maciej 'groobo' Maselewski once again demonstrates his versatility with another run on a different type of game, this time Heart of Darkness. No, this has nothing to do with Joseph Conrad's famous work. Instead, it's an adventure platformer that was noticeably designed by the creator of Out of This World. Due to the nature of the game, Maciej's 40-segment 0:23:49 doesn't contain any fancy tricks, just good old-fashioned luck manipulation and even more near-death experiences than a normal playthrough.

Monday, November 3, 2008 by Enhasa

Welcome to Rapture

Long considered one of the speedrun candidates most deserving for replacement was Daniel 'Kareshi' Brown's Castlevania II: Simon's Quest in 0:48:45 from almost three years ago. Perhaps no one is more relieved to see Thomas L. Mallory, Jr.'s new run go up on SDA than Daniel himself, as he can now be rightfully proud of all his listed runs. But of course the star of today's update is Thomas, so let's get back to his grand entrance. It's safe to say that his single-segment 0:41:48 makes for quite a solid start to his time at SDA. There's still room to make it better with tighter execution; black sheep have feelings and deserve your attention too!

The other game in this update is Irrational's spiritual successor to the System Shock series: BioShock. Many people have been eagerly awaiting the completion of a BioShock run since its release, and now they can thank Mirko 'cortez' Brown for running the PC version for SDA. His time is 1:04:20 (torrent, HQ torrent), done in 56 segments and combined into 14 files. Mirko includes a lot of very nice tricks in his run and even some bloopers as a special bonus. What are you waiting for? Here's your chance to finally stick it to that freshman English professor who forced you to read Ayn Rand. Get downloading, would you kindly?

Saturday, November 1, 2008 by Enhasa

Welcome to Violent City

Barely a month after Manhunt 2 first appeared on this site, we come again with some garden-fresh speedruns straight to your basket. First, we have André Göhlsch, who improves three of his individual levels on the PS2 version: Red Light in 0:01:49, Bees' Honey Pot in 0:02:00, and Personality Clash in 0:03:48. The total time for all the levels drops from 0:53:00 to 0:51:51. If that's not enough, Keith 'The Quiet Man' Skomorowski — a man who doesn't seem very quiet on IRC but whose name is worth a lot in Scrabble — has a 15-segment Wii run in 1:00:39 (torrent). The differences between the two versions mean you can't go wrong watching both.

The trend in GTA running and really the majority of multisystem game running has been to use the PC version for finer control via mouse input. Jamie 'mongoanytime' Stone apparently has no use for either this trend or the one where you use your back foot to push off while skateboarding. Regardless of control preference, this 2:02:46 (torrent, HQ torrent) of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City is hot. Jamie's run is split into three segments to scrub those hard-to-reach areas. I know in many viewers' minds, Grand Theft Auto has become synonymous with audio commentaries, but I guess you'll just have to cope without them this time.

Monday, October 27, 2008 by dex

Respect your elders

A short history lesson: Back in the days when Earth's crust was still hot, an individual known as Nolan 'Radix' Pflug (with help from a few others) started a speedrunning community devoted to Quake called Speed Demos Archive. Several years later, not content with watching only Quake demos, he expanded the site to include speedruns on other games. Since then the importance of Quake speedrunning has been diminishing to the point most people nowadays don't even know why there is a 'Quake guy' in the logo of the site.

Such a turn of events has made the Quake community smaller and smaller, and in order to revive the interest in Quake, SDA Team decided to include Quake updates on the main part of the site. But, but! Not everyone has Quake, which is necessary to watch Quake demos. That's why the updates on the main site will contain encoded videos of a few demos in a quality slightly higher than NQ, while the simultaneous Quake site updates will contain all demos for everyone with a Quake copy.

A very brief explanation. Quake demos are done in an Individual Level manner. Each level gets 4 single-player categories - Easy Run, Easy 100%, Nightmare Run, Nightmare 100%. Easy and Nightmare are skill levels. Run means exiting as fast as possible, 100% means getting all kills and all secrets and exiting as fast as possible. Besides that, there are coop and marathon categories. Demos are done both on official maps from Quake and on custom maps approved by the QuakeSDA staff. Id maps are usually prefixed as 'exmx', meaning 'episode x map x'. So, time for the demos, and in a lucky coincidence we have a LOT of id demos...

Also, some demos from custom maps, incidentally from id remixes:

Well, those were some nice demos. But, we've been around for over 10 years, surely we must have something better, right? And we do! In every one of such updates, I'll try to show you an Oldie of the Update, which will usually be one of the finest demos we've had among over 10000 demos made to date. And what better way to start than with something really, really good? Today's demo is a treat from the year 2000, one of the top demos we've had. It has a huge amount of boosting, and a huge amount of amazing action. Oh, and it has luring a zombie to save time, too! In order to give those 'top' demos better quality, as well as to show you how nice Quake can look today, there'll be an Insane Quality version made with enhanced textures, models, hud and similar things. So, without further ado:

Phew, that was a lengthy update. Don't worry, the next ones will be way shorter :). Check out the Quake part of the site for all the 17 demos in the latest update.

Sunday, October 26, 2008 by Enhasa

Fighting of the Spirit

Those of you who have only started following SDA in the last couple of years might not know about Wouter Jansen, GoldenEye runner extraordinaire. Wouter hasn't had a run posted since 2005 and was last seen going bananas. Today he gets his long-awaited revenge on monkey business whistleblower David 'marshmallow' Gibbons, another fabled runner of yore, by one-upping him in a game roughly analogous to Eternal Darkness or killer7 on the GameCube: Shadow Man for (of course) the N64. Wouter completes the European version in 0:44:43 by collecting only 15 souls, compared to David's 3:14 with 90 souls. This is due to a massive sequence break and other tricks discovered by yet another grizzled veteran of the N64 speedrunning fraternity, who asked for his name to be removed in accordance with the witness protection program.

In a humorous turn of events, Mike just informed me that somehow the GoldenEye Wouter Jansen and the Shadow Man Wouter Jansen are in fact different people with the same name. So the former Wouter is still retired and you should probably ignore everything I just said, except of course that part where I implied that you should watch this run.

I don't think it would be an exaggeration to say that due to the circumstances and years of waiting, this next run is the realization of the single most highly anticipated game to ever appear on SDA: Tales of Symphonia, our first Tales game and surely not our last. Long considered far too lengthy to ever appear on this site, it turns out that the trick to getting a manageable New Game time is to enlist the help of three friends. That's right, Michael 'Flip714' Dix, Marcus 'DaBlueDragoon' Dix, Mark 'Peebs97' Peebles, and Tyler 'ukm101' McDaniel join forces to produce SDA's first ever four-player speedrun in 7:48 (torrent, HQ torrent) using 70 segments. They also tag-teamed to write the comments, which are a bona fide must-read in every sense, including learning whose travails you are laughing at in each fight.

Thursday, October 23, 2008 by Enhasa

Madman

The first speedrun we have for today is on Ratchet: Deadlocked, a game that illustrates the gross discrimination against robots in the modern starring character job market; if this bothers you, we also have earlier runs on Ratchet & Clank and Up Your Arsenal for your enjoyment. Hailing from France, Bruno "Linkinito" Ramadanoski makes his SDA debut with this run on Couch Potato mode in 2:10:51 (torrent, HQ torrent). In a self-described "love story" of the making of this run, after waiting a year for Deadlocked to be released, Bruno waited another year and a half to be able to finally record. That's amour, baby.

The Polish Rifle is back. Maciej 'groobo' Maselewski: crazy good or just plain crazy? It may be even harder to tell after you watch his 0:31:46 (torrent) of the second-party expansion Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil. This doesn't just obsolete, but rather obliterates Joseph 'Apathy' Wilcox's 0:52:25 from shortly after the game's release in 2005. Maciej's run uses 37 segments compared to the 12 segments of the preceding run, but when you shoot it, you'll know where that extra money went. Read the highly informative comments with explanations and problem areas, written in the unmistakable groobo style of professional savagery.

Saturday, October 18, 2008 by Enhasa

Resident Jade, Evil Empire

The Resident Evil page is becoming overflowed with goodness. SDA newcomer Luciano 'LucianoRX' Matyak brings some of that goodness with two speedruns on the Arrange mode of the PS1 Director's Cut version. As you could probably surmise, there is a run for Chris and a run for Jill. Those of you who know something about Resident Evil running could further surmise that the Jill run is faster. However, you would probably need to be psychic to surmise that the difference between the runs is exactly three minutes: 1:10:17 for Chris and 1:07:17 for Jill. Luciano has some short and sweet comments detailing the settings and version differences that he used.

Now from Biohazard to Bioware. The Jade Empire page was also supposed to grow, but Trevis 'garrote' Hall's old run in 2:57:06 was taken down in favor of Christian 'ninetigerr' Koch's new run using another character — read the note to find out why they aren't separate categories. Christian, also a SDA newcomer, seems like a very enthusiastic person. Maybe he's just excited about his 2:35:58 (torrent) in 12 segments. There are numerous differences and improvements since Trevis's run, so do check out the new run. Christian is mulling over the idea of a single-segment run, so if and when that happens, you might just know who's responsible.

Monday, October 13, 2008 by Enhasa

Take Me Somewhere Nice

Another update, another two new games.

Rob 'Mickey_Mage' Whitener is a champion of these lesser known titles, and today he graces us with a SNES run that isn't a Mickey Mouse game. Instead, it's Data East's Joe & Mac, ported from the arcades. It features the titular cavemen, who fight all sorts of prehistoric adversaries as they platform and run 'n gun bone through user-selected stages in order to rescue the kidnapped cavegirls. Once again, Rob's chosen game has some peculiar physics and controls, so it's an added bonus seeing how he overcomes this. He finishes in 0:23:26 with deaths, but that's honestly to be expected considering how dangerous it was back then. Make no mistake: this is quite the high quality speedrun.

For this next speedrun, I'd like to welcome all readers of the Glasgow Courier and Good Evening Glasgow. (No, that's Glasgow, Montana, not Scotland.) Please welcome Darren 'Ultimate Darius' Cornell to the SDA ranks. He makes his entrance with Pokémon FireRed, the complement to LeafGreen. Darren thanks a lot of people in his comments, including Tom 'slowbro' Batchelor, who offered a $100 bounty for a single-segment run. I suppose that would be a spoiler that this 2:49:09 (torrent) is in fact single-segment. We at SDA would like to make a disclaimer that while it may be amusing to see "U used TACKLE!" throughout this run, your English teacher will likely not approve.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008 by Enhasa

On the Warpath

A couple of PC games receive their inaugural runs today.

Our first speedrun is for Hitman: Codename 47. While we already have runs for Hitman 2 and Hitman: Contracts on SDA, this is our first run for the first game in the series. Rejoice! Daniel 'CannibalK9' Burns is the runner, and he's making quite a name for himself with his wonderful audio commentaries. He doesn't disappoint with his Hitman run in 0:34:19 (torrent, HQ torrent), so please give it a listen — if you want any run comments at all, you'll have to. Daniel realized that everyone just listens to his audio commentaries, and there's not too much information to convey this time, so his text comments basically serve as a placeholder.

The other game is really an expansion. It's Age of Empires III: The WarChiefs, and nobody will give you a prize for guessing that it's the expansion for Age of Empires III, which debuted on this site in May. Bart 'TheVoid' de Waal, PC runner extraordinaire and all-around helpful dude, has produced this run in 1:57:39. He mostly kept the development of this run a secret, but Bart's general perfectionism is no secret. This speedrun, similar to the film Little Big Man, ends with the Battle of the Little Bighorn; both are highly recommended viewing.

Saturday, October 4, 2008 by Enhasa

Fight to the Death

Ready for a game where you pilot giant mechs and fight to the death? Of course you are. Wes 'Carcinogen' Kempton is here to satisfy your bloodlust and oillust with a speedrun of Konami's Zone of the Enders. If you don't know what this series is about, it might pique your interest to learn that this game was developed by what amounts to the Metal Gear Solid team. Wes completes the game in 0:33:15 (torrent) and now holds the run of the final game, alphabetically, on the game list. If we're lucky, maybe Wes will run one of the ZOE follow-ups, much like how I'm sure Nicholas 'Sir VG' Hoppe is planning a run of Aaahh!!! Real Monsters to further solidify his grip on the start of the alphabet.

You may recall that back on July 11, Pablo 'DJ Mike Haggar' Bert vowed to defend his Battletoads records to the death. The time of reckoning has arrived. Stepping into the steel cage is the new challenger, Chris 'Shadowknife' Foreman, who presumably carries a shadowy knife of some sort that will be used to combat Pablo's deadly deejaying skills. Despite becoming nervous near the end, Chris makes a clean incision on the toads with his 0:19:36, an improvement of thirty-seven seconds. The 100% time by Pablo still stands, but for how long? Will he be able to defend it, or will all his attention be focused on launching his counterattack?