There are a few levels I’d say I know like the back of my hand, but top speedrunners are the sort who can not only draw their gamehand perfectly from memory, they’ve probably also whipped out a scalpel and peeled back their gameskin to examine the workings of the underlying muscles and tendons. This metaphor is falling apart, so I’ll say: kids, don’t play with scalpels. Instead, for the next week you can marvel at dozens of speedrunners demonstrating their mastery of 150-ish games during the latest livestreamed speedrun-o-rama Awesome Games Done Quick. It starts this afternoon!
Folks from across the world will be trying to zip through games as quickly as possible, using tricks, exploits, and just plain ridiculous skill. I’m largely a potterer myself, far from a speedrunner, but still find many of these runs awfully impressive to watch.
A look at the schedule shows it’s heavy with console games from the ’80s and ’90s, same as ever, but also has an interesting and relatively modern load of games more familiar to us on PC. These include Left 4 Dead 2, Darksiders II, Transformers: Devastation, Axiom Verge, Hotline Miami, Fez, Teslagrad, Spelunky, Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light, Kero Blaster, Half-Life 2, Portal 2, The Talos Principle, Soma, Wolfenstein: The Old Blood, Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs, Grand Theft Auto III, Mirror’s Edge, Dragon Age: Origins, Age of Empires, Diablo, Diablo II: LoD, Shovel Knight, and some others I’m sure I missed – look, I’m supposed to be on holiday until Monday, I shouldn’t even be writing this.
It’s a fundraiser too, and a big one. Last year’s Summer Games Done Quick rummaged up over $1.2 million for Doctors Without Borders, and this here AGDQ will benefit the Prevent Cancer Foundation.
You can watch the whole thing livestreamed through Twitch. It’ll start this afternoon at 4:30 and run through until the wee hours of next Sunday.