Playing the game as fast as possible.


Speedrunning is an activity very specific to computer games. Players get deep into a chosen title to find and utilize every trick and sometimes even every bug. Obviously classic titles get more following and there is much tougher competition for the world record (abbreviated here often as WR). For example Super Mario Bros from 1985 was in 2018 done at the pace of 4:55 (four minutes fifty-five seconds, if you played the game you know it's not easy).

Speedrunning happens also with physical games (toys or puzzles) and Rubik's Cube would probably be the most famous example (4.22s WR). Manual dexterity and quick decisions are key in many music games too. Especially rhythmic games can be approached in such a way. You can set up a demanding tempo and limit repetitions as you can. And you really need to be good (have a good "team") to do it. So the similarities are many. As an example of an almost runnable music game you can try Musical tetris.

Trying out the music game in a fast version is very satisfying, although for a good speedrunning you need a very precise victory condition and mechanics that force you to in-game decision-making. It is assumed that players will do their best, so if there is a possibility to prearrange the piece, you end up with fast playing the composed piece (that is based on a music game).

In music

Playing a composed piece as fast as possible is known too and Rimsky-Korsakov's "Flight of the Bumblebee" is notorious for such a competition. This type of "speedrunning" suffers from unclear victory condition too, because the piece is supposed to be played "properly" and that's a hard call, always with some subjective weight to it.

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