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Released in September 2009, Grappling Hook is a first-person shooter puzzle game, in which the player must use the titular device in order to complete the challenges set in the game. The game was developed by SpeedRunGames, and, as the name implies, the gameplay focuses on speed and acceleration.


Individual-levels hard difficulty run 0:09:27.79:

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Level number Time Date Player
Level 01 0:00:41.87 2010-04-04 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 02 0:00:20.22 2010-04-23 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 03 0:00:12.24 2009-10-08 David 'LLCoolDave' Spickermann
Level 04 0:00:18.43 2010-04-24 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 05 0:00:19.85 2010-02-11 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 06 0:00:23.43 2010-07-08 Josh 'Inexistence' Peaker
Level 07 0:00:56.35 2010-07-20 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 08 0:00:16.27 2010-03-25 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 09 0:00:25.48 2010-02-13 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 10 0:00:28.58 2010-10-09 David 'LLCoolDave' Spickermann
Level 11 0:00:19.87 2010-09-11 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 12 0:00:37.32 2010-03-28 Josh 'Inexistence' Peaker
Level 13 0:00:20.71 2009-10-09 David 'LLCoolDave' Spickermann
Level 14 0:00:19.70 2009-10-10 David 'LLCoolDave' Spickermann
Level 15 0:00:18.66 2009-10-11 David 'LLCoolDave' Spickermann
Level 16 0:00:38.95 2010-03-28 Josh 'Inexistence' Peaker
Level 17 0:00:27.72 2010-07-18 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 18 0:00:26.88 2010-03-27 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 19 0:00:19.22 2010-04-04 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 20 0:00:19.43 2010-04-17 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 21 0:00:13.93 2010-04-05 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin
Level 22 0:00.11.85 2010-10-20 David 'LLCoolDave' Spickermann
Level 23 0:00:30.83 2010-02-13 Nigel 'ridd3r' Martin

David Spickermann's comments:

Grappling Hook is a surprisingly compelling game from a german independent programmer and seems to be the technologically slightly more plausible version of portal. With fairly user friendly physics (there is strafejumping and quite a bit of air control), an interesting tool in the grappling hook and a precise timer the game is well fit for speedrunning. I pretty much did the first runs of this game, but then got too busy to optimize them further and am not in much of a speedrunning mood lately. Since then, ridd3r and Inex have taken over and polished most of the game, leaving me with 6 records now that we are submitting.

My runs were on a slightly older version of the game, however, I am not aware of any changes in the later patches that would invalidate my runs. These old versions had a Memory Leak that caused the game to drop quite a lot of memory down a black hole whenever you'd restart the game, causing the level loading to take longer than anticipated by the game. This effect is enlarged by the system ressources fraps eats on its own. As a result of this, there appears to be a small hiccup at the start of my runs, most notably in level 3 and 14. This is merely an issue with the game displaying more frames in a shorter amount of time to catch up to where it has anticipated to be, it doesn't give you any bonus at all. (You can see the timer moving very fast during this hiccup) In fact, you have a lot less control over what you do so it's more of a downside. This issue has been fixed in the latest version.

In the old version, you could also hold down the fire button while the level loaded to shoot a grappling hook on the first frame. While this doesn't work anymore in the latest version, you can simply click and hold during the small pause that was added at the start of each level to prevent the loading issue mentioned above, and you can even aim somewhere else besides straight ahead, so there's no benefit from using the old version here either.

Level 3: It took me a while to figure out how to do the start fast enough, the horizontal green wall moves over the electric grid and closes off the gap at the other end fairly quickly, so there isn't much room for error at the start. In the end section, it isn't possible to just bunny hop through the door, you are simply not fast enough without hooking to the wall, so we need to waste a little time for the door to open and the anchor to reach the far wall.

Level 10: This level is mostly on a timer, so there isn't much to do at the start. The extra damage taken from the electric platforms on hard mode and the limited time you can hang from one green block means getting up the first shaft alive is a bit tricky, but quite doable. I unfortunately miss the red platform after the drop, which doesn't cost me time (I have to wait for the elevator) but drops my health considerably. It's possible to do the final corridor slightl faster using two grapples, but you end up taking quite some damage from the floor and you usually just die. Starting at less than 100 health means I have to play it safe. This could be improved by a bit, but it's a lot of work for little gain so I understand why none of us bothered. Yet.

Level 13: The jump at the start is almost perfectly timed. There might be a way to grapple straight into the exit hole after the drop, but I havn't found any way to do it yet. So what I do instead is grapple fairly high so I bump into the ceiling and start dropping down again sooner. Bumping into the far end of the staircase is actually intended, this slows me down enough to where a circle jump puts me straight in front of the green blocks for a quick grappel up instead of overshooting if I keep momentum. This is probably my best run.

Level 14: This level is actually intented as a puzzle, the buttons on each side set the corresponding block to a different height, and you normally can't jump up one block's height. However, if you jump onto a block moving up and jump again right away you get a boost that sends you up far enough, pretty much skipping the puzzle. However, timing these is quite tricky, and the first one went higher than I had hoped. There is no way to get through the timed door and getting the diamond within a single activation, so you need to shoot the button twice. Again, I hit the ceiling to save time. At the end of this level is one of the trickiest jumps in the game. Stepping back before the circle jump is necessary, you need a very fast and curved jump to gain speed, but still land on the edge of the block to be able to jump again. With quite a bit of luck you can just barely make it to the other side.

Level 15: Probably my favorite route in the game, completely circumventing the intented puzzle. It also shows just how much air control you have in this game. I didn't bother to optimize the start because I arrive early at the final block anyway.

Level 22: The jumping pattern at the start is surprisingly tricky. I tried for the longest time to do the top part with one less jump at the end, but you just can't seem to curl enough. I unfortunately miss the exit by a bit at the end, costing some frames. Probably the run I'm least satisfied with, but none of us have been able to beat it yet.

Nigel Martin's comments:

After watching some of LLCD's runs I thought it would be fun to run a level or two run myself but, somehow this turned into me running 14 of the 23 levels. The great thing about this run is pretty much anyone can appreciate it, even having not played the game, it's also under 10 minutes!

There aren't many tricks apart from strafe jumping, it's just fast hooking and trying to bypass as much of the levels as possible. This is limited due to the need to collect all the codes before the level can be finished.

Usual thanks to all of the SDA staff for their work in maintaining the site and publishing runs. Also thanks to LLCD and Inexistence for their work on this run.

Level 1: I only did this because LLCD's run was on Normal so it needed to be on hard to match all the other levels. Beat the old time by about 0.1s, can't see how to get this down by a second unless some glitch is discovered.

Level 2: The first and only level to feature the double jump, basically you press two jump buttons at almost the same time and you need to be at the edge of a platform to do it - discovered by Inexistence. So after the strafe jumping at the start I can bypass collecting the Grappling Hook altogether.

Level 4: Fast hooking and strafe jumping basically, you can really get some serious distance if the strafe jumps are done correctly. The main improvement to LLCD's time was by continually strafe jumping and hoping I made the distance as opposed to taking a run up. Possibly the hooks at the end could be done a bit faster but they have to be very precise.

Level 5: The first level I did. Nice start, there is then a difficult hook which means I land at the top and not the ledge below which would require an extra jump.

Level 7: Significant portions of this level can't be sped up as I need to wait for moving platforms, lifts etc. I figured out how to get a couple of cycles ahead which I do at the start. There are two methods, one requires accurate hooking, the other requires insane strafe jumping; I use the accurate hooking method but I have managed the other method several times. At 6s in I hook up and manage to stay up there (some kind of glitch), shoot as early as possible then get an angle so I can get up and strafe jump in the tunnel, after that it's on the rails until the very end where I get a great jump to the portal.

Level 8: This is all about being very accurate, despite the many different approaches you could take to this level I am confident this is optimal. Some of the hooking could potentially be a bit faster but the codes are incredibly easy to miss.

Level 9: Main thing to note here is how I skip having to wait for the shunt right at the end. I jump on the grates and lose health but have just enough to get in position for last two hooks. Inexistence said you can hook to the end in a single shot but my momentum isn't slowed by using two really and it would probably take longer to get in position for a single hook.

Level 11: The last level I did and it's way harder than it looks. There are two methods that can be used, both are very similar in time: The hook to get to the 5th code can either be done so you land on the platform before the 6th or you can do as I do here and stay in the air hooking. Dropping down the final shaft and collecting all four codes in one go is difficult and ruined plenty of good attempts so I was very happy with this. With pretty much flawless play an 18;xx is probably possible but I was originally going to keep a 20;79 but then set a goal of 19;xx which I have achieved (even if this is probably my least optimal level). Thanks to LLCD and Inexistence for most of the route for this.

Level 17: The start can't go much faster than this, dodging the turret was a nice touch as well as it's not easy. I bypass having to shoot the orange button by touching it as I go up. Pretty self explanatory after this and this level is definitely optimal to the second.

Level 18: Probably the hardest level in the game in my opinion. I had a good sub 30 route but then Inexistence found a better route which I was able to implement. After collecting the first code, I get a fairly difficult hook (that Inexistence found) then sit on the seam between the blocks (like I did at the start of Level 7). Then Inexistence found you can get a totally insane hook to the 3rd code. Approx 1 in 20 runs got 3 codes successfully and gave me a shot at the 4th. The hook to the 4th code is hard, finish is pretty easy after practise. Maybe 1 in 500 got a completed run.

Level 19: One of the hardest levels, again there are many different approaches but this is the best I found after many hours of work at it. Like Level 8 it's about being precise and I managed to collect more than normal in the hooks at the end.

Level 20: Main things of note are the very far reaching strafe jump at 8s in, then at 12s I get a boost from the closing block and then hook my way to the top.

Level 21: The most optimal level I did definitely. Also the level I enjoyed the most, coincidence? I kept managing to optimise it so that I could scrape a sub 14, as you can see my previous run was only 0.14s slower. Not really any sequence breaks, just very fast hooking. The final hook is difficult to get so you fly right into the portal at the end, most times you end up having to strafe but it's mandatory for a sub 14.

Level 23: I've tried double jumping at the start but it's too far to skip a cycle of the blocks. Therefore, it's about optimal strafe jumping from 22s in until I hit the orange button (a very annoying 22s to have to keep repeating). It may look like I lose a bit of time on the rising blocks but if you get to the last block fast you have to wait until it is the right height before you can make the final jump anyway; I'm confident this is optimal to the second.

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