Friday, December 21, 2012 by Vorpal
The end of their world was a millennium ago
But there is some slight chance the world might not end. Boring as this possibility may be, we're planning for it. You may have also heard that we're putting together a marathon in early January, a little over two weeks from now. Perhaps the banner at the top of the page gave it away. Now check this out: the trailer. Link that around, get those views up! Every person watching means more money for the Prevent Cancer Foundation and, ultimately, just flat-out makes it more fun for everyone. In the meantime, we've got some runs for you.
The fighters in Hidden and Dangerous Deluxe are not nearly so hidden or dangerous now that their secrets have been revealed to the world. 'Thinkshooter' has pulled a Bradley Manning and dumped everything into his run. Check out this 107-part 1:25:12, and if anyone asks, it was on the Normal difficulty. In an SDA first, the run is also available in stereoscopic 3D. If your monitor can handle it, check it out: 720P (side-by-side) and 1080p (above-below).
Mega Man is always a crowd favorite. Let's ride the Cross Street Fighter release hype and enjoy a nice, entertaining Mega Man X3 no-items run (low%). Your host today is Austin 'Auchgard' Caldera, gracing us with his first published speedrun; and the time to beat is now 0:44:37, obsoleting the existing run by 3 minutes. Perhaps Dr. Doppler could tell us whether his impending doom was coming so fast, it displayed the doppler effect?
Sweet Home is a cool-looking game that I, unfortunately, have not played. It turns out that Andrew 'RaneofSoTN' Melnyk is a much more well-rounded gamer than I. This haunted mansion can be exorcised pretty quickly; Rane shows us how with his single-segment 1:04:16. Now I finally know how to deal with that one lamp in my living room that keeps flickering on and off.
Let's cut right to the chase: a lot of people are waiting for a Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword run. 'Paraxade' is your man. I have an incredible amount of respect for long single-segment runs, as I simply don't have the attention span to perform for that long. A 5:39 single-segment with resets certainly delivers on that end. Even as I post this excellent run, I have to wonder if the game will ever get as broken as OoT? Let's download the run, try a bunch of stuff, and find out.
Got one last run for you today. Eversion, a short but sweet little gem, gets a run today courtesy of Dave 'bangerra' Janssens. bangerra rushes straight through the game, taking no note of worthless little gems, and reaches the end in a swift single-segment 0:02:35.74. With a time that fast, you might wonder if there were interesting glitches. Take a gander and, if you guessed yes, pat yourself on the back. I've also gotta say, the ending is very appropriate.
Until next time.
Saturday, December 15, 2012 by dex
A Modest Proposal
I'm saying this because we're quickly approaching the time of yet another Awesome Games Done Quick. This time, like the last, we're raising money for the Prevent Cancer Foundation. And as I have painfully learned during the recent days, there is no greater cause to get money towards. At least not one I can think of.
A person very dear to me has just departed because of stomach cancer. I know it's too late to do anything about that, but the money you help us raise this year might stop a different son from having to lose a different father to a different, but equally sudden, debilitating, and excruciating ailment.
So come watch our marathon, and if you enjoy it, consider donating to that greatest of causes. You can at least bet on me being eternally grateful for your contribution, and I will always raise a glass of an alcoholic beverage to your health. And if you feel so inclined, you can raise one to my old man's memory. He would have enjoyed that almost as much as sharing it.
...I will miss you, dad.
But you aren't here to read my eulogistic remarks. So, back to your scheduled broadcast: some runs to whet your marathon appetite!
Beginning with some classics, we've got a run on Ninja Gaiden. Adding to the gallery of videos available on the game page is Mister 'sinister1', a moniker so catchy I couldn't pass up the chance to write it for posterity. He decided that apparently, Ninja Gaiden isn't difficult enough already, and went for the extra-challenging, Low Percent time. Low percent means Sword only, by the way. Despite this negligible handicap, 'sinister1' got a time of 0:13:07, which is only 35 seconds slower than the unbridled runthrough. An understandably impressive achievement, I think.
Staying in the classical territory, after 6 years, we finally get to find out Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles IV: Turtles In Time promises are no matter to be trifled with. Because that's exactly how long it took Mike Uyama (colloquially known as The Magnificent Dictator behind the scenes) to deliver us a rerun of that game. And boy, was it worth the wait - shattering the previous record by over 2 minutes, this 0:20:20 on Hard as Raphael shows us the man running the show can still also occasionally run a game. As always, top form. Yeah, it's single-segment, what the hell kind of a question is that?
A little less known addition to this update is Skyblazer. Eric 'Omnigamer' Koziel went for the single-segment time in this (I'm afraid to say) unknown to me game. Nevertheless, the 0:26:06 is still an eminently entertaining experience. Then again, guessing what's going on in a platform video game run is not exactly rocket surgery. But I digress; the run looks great, and definitely deserves your download. So go fetch it! And in case you think this description ain't detailed enough, 'Omnigamer' helpfully provided us with audio commentary.
The next submission baffled me, at least after seeing the title of the game and before taking a look at it. See if you feel the same: Crash Tag Team Racing. Tell me that ain't a surprise genre to see. Nevertheless, Michael 'MAS8705' Solseth not only managed to make the game an interesting watching experience, but also managed to incorporate some skips into the game. Now that's impressive. Don't believe me? Watch this 1:16:12 to be proven wrong! It's in 4 segments, by the way.
And finally, to round it off, something more PC oriented - Tomb Raider: Chronicles. Jarek 'j.calling.2bad' Hanzelka made a segmented run of this fifth installment of the Tomb Raider franchise, managing to guide Lara through the trapped caves and temples in just 1:13:28, spanning 33 segments. Highly polished by the folks at Tomb Runner, to a mirror shine - so go take a look.
That about wraps it up. Remember, January 6-12, 2013. Be there or be square.
Wednesday, December 5, 2012 by Vorpal
Marathon Hype Starts Now
Got a bunch of runs for you as well. First up is the return of Josh 'the Funkdoc' Ballard, who had multiple runs posted just last update. Anyone who knows how prolific Josh is, however, won't be surprised at finding out that we're posting a grand total of four runs of his today. The game is Castlevania 3: Dracula's Curse. funkdoc's recorded a Trevor solo run in 0:29:36, a Grant run in 0:30:43, a Sypha run in 0:28:55, and to round things off, another Sypha run, this time on the Japanese version. That comes in at 0:29:10 and uses a bunch of different boss and stage strats, since the two versions have different glitches. This game's strats have been evolving and it's nice to see the fruits of that, especially when it involves 4 good new runs.
Speaking of evolving games, and more particularly fruits, the big Dee Kay has something to say. Donkey Kong Country gets a new run today. Timothy 'tjp7154' Peters has been kind enough to send in a single-segment all stages run. In lieu of going bananas with bad puns, I'll simply note that this obsoletes his old run by one minute… and the old run was segmented. Grab this 0:31.
Dark Souls has been the darling of the gaming world for some time. I think it's about time SDA shows some love as well. Freddy 'Thanatos' Vasquez, who previously ran Demon's Souls for your enjoyment, has set his sights on everybody's favorite sequel. Take a gander at this 0:32:45, done single-segment with resets and major skips, and try not to get too excited whenever VICTORY ACHIEVED pops up.
Superman 64 is a game that everybody loves to hate. That hasn't stopped Alec 'aleckermit' Aster, however. aleckermit, one of the world's premier N64-ologists, made it his mission to break this game, and break it he did. Cruising through the rings and glitching through the indoor levels leads you to a single-segment 1:53:14.
Serious Sam has long been an SDA favorite. Thus I am not surprised when the recent HD remake, Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter, gets a competent set of runs. The people to credit for this are 'Freezard', who ran 14 of the game's 15 levels, and Mirko Brown, who came through on the Sewers level. I don't know of anyone who can't use more nonstop alien blasting in their life, so check out this IL table, which totals out to a nice 0:39:55 on the Tourist difficulty.
Our last run today completes a crowd favorite in record time. Super Mario World 2: Yoshi's Island has seen a resurgence of activity lately, something I wholeheartedly endorse. Andy 'Carl Sagan' Diamos is the man of the hour, and while he might not have sent Yoshi traipsing across billions and billions of stars, he's certainly captured billions and billions of hearts. Just ask ArneTheGreat what effect this single-segment 1:49:16 had on him.
That's all for today. See you around.
Friday, November 30, 2012 by Breakdown
Does anybody really read the title?
I feel like every other update I write has a Castlevania game in it. This is an exaggeration, but really wouldn't be a horrible thing if it were completely true. And in case you were wondering, yes, this observation was brought on because we do have a Castlevania game today, Castlevania: Bloodlines to be specific, and if you think vampire hunting is best done with a spear, then this is the run for you. Runner Tom 'ProD1gy84' Israels pilots Spear Dude (or Eric Lecarde for you manual-reading types out there) through the lone Genesis installment in the series in a very quick 0:31:48 on the expert difficulty setting.
Now for those of you who feel cheated out of some old fashioned whip-wielding Belmont action in the last paragraph, fear not. Simon Belmont sees some screen time in this next run, but he has to share the spotlight with some other Konami characters in a game that never saw release in the US. Those of you not well versed in Famicom exclusives are probably wondering what I could possibly be talking about, but the rest of you are no doubt excited about the link to the Konami Wai Wai World run that is no doubt incoming. Josh 'funkdoc' Ballard is the one giving the Famicom fanboys something to cheer about today, guiding some of Konami's finest to victory in 0:33:25.
That's not it for Josh the funkdoc this update, though. In addition to being an all-star at cleaning up 8-bit space of alien scourges, he's also rather adept at cleaning up the 8-bit streets as evidenced in his work on the title Bad Street Brawler. Josh makes use of Duke Davis's varied moveset and makes the city safe in 0:15:39. Not bad at all for a retired punk rocker.
Finishing things up today, we have a little something for the people who want more rocket powered bunny rabbits in their lives. And really who doesn't? Bryan 'Hsanrb' Nash offers up a healthy dose of robotic rabbit goodness in his run of the early Playstation game, Jumping Flash! The time of the run is a very speedy 0:12:48, and really, did you expect a run featuring a cybernetic rabbit to take all that long? I think not.
Wednesday, November 21, 2012 by Vorpal
Two's a crowd
Athena is a darling of the bad game exchange, and runner Brian 'Brossentia' Cook is doing us a public service. While we all feel bad that he was subjected to the horrors of the goddess of science, we can at least appreciate the fruits of his labor... to a certain extent. Check it out: single-segment 0:22:35 with warps.
Batman's been popping up a lot lately. For our purposes, however, Arkham City is the new hotness. With this one, you've got a choice. Would you prefer to watch the game be cleared from scratch, or would you prefer new game plus? Sean 'DarthKnight' Grayson has very thoughtfully run both categories single-segment and with the Catwoman DLC. 2:06:17 is the time to beat for new game plus, and otherwise you're looking at 2:03:19. Yeah, NG+ is longer; that's because the game ups the difficulty to compensate.
Clock Tower is a game people have toyed with running, so it's nice to see Greg 'TheThrillness' Innes put it to rest. But considering that the run goes for Ending H, maybe 'putting it to rest' was a bad choice of words. It really is a shame this wasn't posted in time for Halloween. 0:02:04 is much shorter than it normally takes for an escape from a serial killer, if bad horror movies have taught me anything.
Zombie games are all the rage, but no zombie game has been quite as successful as Left 4 Dead. The star team of 'Freezard', Adam 'AdamAK' Kuczynski, Max 'oasiz' Ylitalo and Lee 'flicky' Reeves, last on this page not too long ago, hasn't slacked at all. This time you get a taste of the Sacrifice DLC. Perhaps the name is a reference to the team-killing antics you're about to see? 0:05:38 is not very long at all; usually betrayals involve a dozen minutes of speeches and backstory.
If Capcom announced new Mega Man Legends content, a lot of people would be very happy. Justin 'JMC4789' Chadwick decided to correct their deficiency and complement the existing easy-mode run with a run on normal. Sad trombones play for Tron Bonne in a grand total of 0:53:41, single-segment.
Rygar hosted a serious bit of competition around the middle of the year, what with feasel and 'Darkwing Duck' duking it out over precious seconds. Darkwing managed, after much effort, to cut the 23, and the record has stood there since. The time to beat is now a single-segment 0:22:55, and you'll need some pretty great yo-yo skills to even get close.
Shadow Complex got broken open with some new tricks recently, and so Jordan 'Greenalink' Greener decided that he couldn't let his old run stand. It isn't often that someone cuts a run time in half, but that's what he did. Enjoy this 0:07:28, done single-segment and with resets on new game plus.
Until next time. And I promise, that won't be weeks from now. Be sure to check back soon.
Friday, November 2, 2012 by Vorpal
I'd buy a system for F-Zero U
This next game follows a very well-thought-out theme: it starts with an F. Everyone likes Frogger, especially Stephen 'SSBMstuff' Evans. SSBMstuff tackles the remake, helpfully titled Frogger: He's Back. 0:15:41 is the new standard, done in two segments. Unfortunately, many frogs were harmed in the production of this speed run.
Speaking of games whose names starts with an F, there's a rather popular series that fits the bill. Now what was it? Frugal? That doesn't sound right. Final, maybe? Tristan 'Caracarn' Helwig has spent very long periods of time running this game. Not so long ago he was doing single-segment attempts that took up a whole day. This run, however, is segmented. Nobody thought this game would ever slip in under the 10-hour mark, but I present Final Fantasy X in 9:56 over 45 segments.
Another World, also known as Out of This World, is a cult classic, accorded its status as such by none less than Tim Rogers. Alexis 'NHG' Gabaig is no stranger to running the game, owing to his existing runs. Today he obsoletes his segmented run; using 6 segments to clock in at 0:07:39, over a minute faster.
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex is the third game to get an inaugural run today. The honor falls to Greg 'Setz' Tyndall. Setz blasts through the game very quickly, and claims a 0:49:47 to his name with a somewhat glitchy run. Good stuff.
Grand Theft Auto 3 is one of those games where I wasn't sure if we would ever see a 100% speedrun, due to the massive length and planning required of such an endeavor. After the first one, I thought we wouldn't ever seen an improvement. Luckily for you, John 'Silmaranza' Breedon thought otherwise. 17 segments sounds like a fair amount, but when the run time is 6:32 and the average segment length is around 20 minutes, it becomes clear why it took about two and a half years to finish the run. It's not often that we see obsoletions of over an hour.
There are an awful lot of Mega Man games out there, so when I casually mention that this run is of a game not already featured on the site, that doesn't narrow it down much. The game in question is Mega Man Network Transmission. 'doicm' stands up to fill the gap, and the result is before you. 1:06:51, to be exact. You know it's a good first run when the time is half an hour under a testrun. And yes, the time listed in the statid is wrong.
Pulseman looks really fun. I'm gonna have to play it sometime. Fortunately for you, Nick 'Axon' Beaudette already did. Genesis games always have the funniest major skips, and Axon's 0:31:34 is no exception. As far as I can tell, you can fly through walls by nothing more than running, turning around, and then jumping. If that's not the best endorsement I can give, then I don't know what is. Note that, unfortunately, the run has no audio commentary despite the statid saying so.
That's all the runs I have to post for you today, but certainly not all the runs. Everyone wants to go to AGDQ in January, and that includes you (even if you don't know it yet). Unfortunately, travel and lodging can cost a fair chunk of change. The cool cats from #smw on our IRC server have put together their own marathon to help out with those costs and get people who would not otherwise show to the marathon. Seriously, check it out, it's just started and has a three-day lineup of runs from people I am honored to know: www.numbersmw.com.
Until next time.
Thursday, October 25, 2012 by Breakdown
We're starting things off today with a game near and dear to my heart. Some of my earliest gaming memories are playing the arcade version of Gauntlet, and once I got my hands on a copy of the NES port I played it for hours on end during my formative years. And with those memories in mind, it brings me great pleasure to unveil a new and improved speedrun for the title from Jeff Feasel. Using the Elf he charges through the game's 100 levels in 0:16:49 without any of that gathering clues crap. Morak never knew what hit him.
Moving on we're adding to our growing list of runs from the venerable Contra series, though today with an entry that tend not to leap to most people's minds. Kyle 'Mr K' Halverson has announced his candidacy for mayor of Game Boy Contra titles today with a speedrun of Operation C. He's running on a platform that, even in a monochromatic setting, alien invaders must be dealt with as swiftly and shirtlessly as possible, so give him a chance to earn your vote. It'll only take 0:11:44 of your time, and it's definitely worth it.
Next up, we've got a little something for RPG fans today. Well, little is rarely the right word for an RPG run, and it's really not a fitting adjective for a 100% single segment. The game in question? The revered Square title Chrono Trigger. The runner? The destroyer of revered Square titles, Kari 'Essentia' Johnson. The time? 5:40. Is anybody still reading this? Probably not, you've already clicked the download link.
Wrapping things up on the game front, we bring you to feudal China, where the body counts are always high and the enemy officers are always dispatched. Well, at least that's what Dynasty Warriors 4 teaches you about feudal China. Runner lenophis is well schooled in this game's history lessons, and his expertise shows in a set of three runs, all played on expert difficulty through New Game +. What differentiates the runs is the character selected, and the times are as follows: 0:17:21.80 as Shu, 0:19:36.96 as Wei, and 0:17:03.98 as Wu. Go check em out.
One last point of interest here, this weekend a number of members of SDA, SpeedRunsLive, and The Speed Gamers community will be participating in an online, Halloween-themed marathon dubbed the Speedrun Spooktacular. The event will be starting off 8 AM Friday EST and will feature over 60 games and will be taking donations to benefit SDA marathon banner-maker, artist extraordinaire, and all around cool person Lindsey Lane King (aka Jazaboo or Anatotitan). She's recently incurred some rather hefty medical expenses, and she's given so much to the communities over the years, now seems a great time to give back. The festivities can be watched on romscout's twitch channel, and a full schedule of the games to be played can be found here. Come by and check it out, and maybe give a bit to a person in need while you're at it.
Wednesday, October 17, 2012 by dex
Well, it's *kind* of a theme
Not to be outdone, the celebrated Half-Life researcher Albin 'quadrazid' Sigby went for the Half-Life: Blue Shift crown. Just like the previous run, it's on the Hard difficulty, and manages to beat it by a whopping 56 seconds. Sounds feeble? It might until you realise that the old run was segmented, and this little, 0:31:22 long baby is single-segment. Now that impressive enough for anyone, good job, mister quadrazid!
Speaking of quadrazid, he also submitted a small improvement to the Counter Strike: Condition Zero table. The Thin Ice level got 51 seconds' worth of savings thanks to his exploits, for a time of 0:02:13 for the mission and 1:43:27 for the whole game. Let's hope it's merely the beginning of quadrazid's Half-Life escapades.
Now, probably my favorite run from this update, a shiny new Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time playthrough. Not only is this on one of my favorite games of all time, but it also completely demolishes the previous time of over two hours. Years of painstaking research and even more painstaking execution culminates in Justin 'Ucpro' Salamon's segmented run, clocking in at 1:31:49. 16 segments, by the way. Now, stop wasting time on my ramblings and go watch it, it's amazing.
For another non-FPS entry in the update, a couple Resident Evil 2 videos. 'Carcinogen' made a couple single segment runs, first using the character of Claire A - and getting a 1:19:01 (an improvement of over 5 minutes over Dragondarch's old run). Aftewards, he used Leon B and got 1:17:47, about 7 and a half minutes faster. Good show, that man, good show. Multiple SS runs in a single update are always fun to see.
Finally, to round this update off, a singular, but significant improvement in the Xbox Individual Level table of Call Of Duty 4: Modern Warfare: AJ 'ss4_link' Stainer improved the level All Ghillied Up by three minutes and twenty-one seconds, to get this spangly 0:04:21. The total time for the table is now 1:52:32.
And if videos aren't really your thing, perhaps you'll be interested in some words from the great Mike Uyama, interviewed by 'sinister1'. Go learn some of SDA Dictator's views and opinions!
Wednesday, October 3, 2012 by Vorpal
It's all PJ's fault!
The first is one of PJ's runs. Dream TV is not a game, in the sense that you'd want to play it, but it's certainly something. That something is on full display here today; all 0:14:20 of it. Mr. Patrick 'PJ' DiCesare has spent far longer on this game than it deserves, and the audio commentary is proof of that.
This next run, while not completed by PJ personally, is a product of his bad game exchange. Hercules: The Legendary Journeys is an N64 game that was gifted to Tony 'ZenicReverie' Foster by neskamikaze, which should tell you all you need to know right there. But if it doesn't, then Zenic's speedrun in 1:24:12 will definitely do the trick.
Dear Esther is not normally the type of game that gets run, but Simon 'default' Albacke Eriksson is happy to make an exception. default doesn't put much stock in languid recollections or flashbacks, instead preferring a sort of powerful expediency. If you wish, you too can share that expediency: 0:23:53. Alternatively, if you prefer, you can do what the game does and insert selected Bible quotations here, at the end of this paragraph. Maybe the first half of 1 Samuel 20:38?
The Hitman series is yet another one of those franchises that I've had vague intentions of playing, for what seems like forever. Today's installment features Hitman 2: Silent Assassin. 'Forever', fortunately, is not a word in Nathanaël 'Forsaken' Villemin's vocabulary. Using a segment for each level, or 20 in total, Forsaken styles his way through the game in 0:32:16, or just over a minute and a half per level. This is an improvement of seven minutes over the previous run.
Alex 'Anwonu' Morinaga is no stranger to the site. Neither are Mario games. This Mario game, however, makes its first appearance here today: Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time. Manipulating time over and over is the standard for segmented runs; 46 segments today gives you a run in 4:07:xx. Perhaps in the future somebody will travel to the past to do a coop run with themself.
This next run? Also a Mario game. New Super Mario Bros. Wii, to be more precise. This is an improvement as well; at first glance it seems like a small improvement, 7 seconds off, until you notice that it's a single-segment obsoleting a segmented. Zach 'RaikerZ' Waggoner single-segments the game, coming in at 0:25:31.
Sonic Advance is a game that I don't feel gets enough respect; crappy GBA audio aside, it has fun levels and visual charisma. Zeupar over at The Sonic Center has been making it his mission to give the game some love, and towards that end he recruited Kyle 'Talon' Ragbir. The existing Sonic and Knuckles runs now have some company; Talon controls Tails and comes out with a 0:14:37.66. I must say, I am not surprised at all that nobody cares to play Amy.
The last run today? Star Trek: Elite Force II. Thomas Sturm today contributes his skill with a phaser, and you get to watch the fruits of his labor. The time to beat is 1:55:07, done in 53 segments. Needless to say, Thomas does not have any red shirts in his closet.
These aren't runs, but there are still a couple other things I should bring to your attention. If you've submitted a run recently, you want to check this thread out. In more general SDA related news, single-segment with resets runs are now accepted globally. Basically, knock yourselves out & have fun speed gaming. Until next time.