A new year brings lots of new things to look forward to, but thankfully we don't have to wait that long for Awesome Games Done Quick. This bi-annual charity speedrun-a-thon started on Sunday, and we've been keeping our eyes out for the most entertaining PC speedruns, which we've compiled below. There's still a few days left in the show, which means plenty more opportunities for some glitchy shenanigans, but here are our favorite runs that we've seen so far.
Hollow Knight - 01:27:57
A 90-minute run through Hollow Knight sounds (to me) simply impossible, let alone one that doesn't rely on exploiting glitches to skip past large portions of the game as many speedruns do. Vysuals' "true ending, no major glitches" run is an impressive feat, clocking in at 1 hour and 27 minutes, using clever tricks like inventory drops (opening your inventory while falling increases the speed of the fall and negates being stunned if timed properly), using his shade after dying to pogo onto higher ledges, and even playing the Chinese language version of the game because the text scrolls faster. It's a masterful run and worth watching to the end.
Portal Race - 00:12:25
Two players, alex_sr and ConnorAce, race through the original Portal with their screens side-by-side, using save/load glitches, phasing out of bounds to skip test chambers, bunny-hopping backwards, and using tons of other fun exploits to speed through the physics-defying FPS puzzle game. There's lots of chatter and useful explanations of all the exploits being used, and a bit of friendly trashtalk, too.
Bloodstained: Curse of the Moon - 00:21:37
To tide people over while waiting for Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night, Koji Igarashi developed this charming 8-bit Castlevania clone as a reward for Kickstarter bonus. You'd think it'd be a novel little toy, but Curse of the Moon is surprisingly fun to play, and really fun to watch. Runner Laxxus tears through it on the ultra-difficult Nightmare mode, which also lets him switch between the three main characters right off the bat and pull off some impressive tricks. I especially love the glitch where freezing enemies and flying into them at just the right height allows Laxxus to fall through the floor and skip massive chunks of the level. There's also a moment at the eight minute mark where Laxxus comes so close to dying but just barely manages to stay in the fight. It's great. Watch it for the fun 8-bit nostalgia and to see Laxxus cheese his way through bosses that should be so much tougher.
Resident Evil - 00:42:31
If there's one reason to watch this run, it's to laugh at how unbelievably terrible Resident Evil's dialogue is. From the very beginning, this game bombards you with some of the most abhorrent voice acting in all of gaming—and constant jokes from the couch only make it even funnier to watch. What I really love about this run (aside from speedrunner Rawderps awesome Wesker outfit) is how much enthusiasm there is for even the smallest accomplishments. Early on, Rawderps explains that the next section contains an incredibly difficult maneuver called "The King Henry Dodge," which set me up to believe Rawderps was going to pull off some insane, mind-breaking stunt. Instead he turned a corner and quickly sidestepped a zombie. Everyone cheered, I laughed out loud, and this speedrun became one of my favorites for AGDQ 2019.
The Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind - 00:28:59
This is one of my favorite runs so far because it's almost incomprehensible. Using a variety of tricks, runner Archariat is able to pull off some ridiculous feats. Some, like launching his character miles into the air to cover extreme distances in a single jump, I've seen before. But I love how he exploits a trick to jack his stats up to obscene levels that allows him to blitz through each area so quickly he clips through walls. Also, he turns you everyday lockpick into a god-slaying weapon that does infinite damage—for some reason even he can't explain? Even though I wish the commentary was more descriptive of what's happening, it's so fun to see such a storied and massive RPG exploited and every main quest beaten in half an hour.