A world-record speedrun achieved during last week's Summer Games Done Quick charity event was stricken from the record after the runner admitted it was faked. The runner in question is Mekarazium, who ran both Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance and its DLC, Blade Wolf, during the marathon. Both runs have since been removed from the Games Done Quick YouTube channel and Mekarazium has been banned from future GDQ events, according to a report by PCGamesN.
It's believed the main Revengeance run was performed live and legitimately, but days after the event, Mekarazium came clean to event organizers that their "world-record" 6 minute 55 second run of the Black Wolf DLC (a full 25 seconds faster than Mekarazium's previous record) was actually a pre-recorded video created by splicing together segments from several speedruns into a single, seemingly perfect run.
These sorts of edited speedruns are usually produced as demonstration of what is theoretically possible in a perfect run, but Mekarazium attempted to pass it off as the real thing in front of an audience of thousands. To add insult to injury, the Black Wolf DLC attempt was only made possible after viewers collectively donated $25,000 toward the goal.
While Summer Games Done Quick returned as an in-person event in Minneapolis this year, Mekarazium was able to pull off their deception because their Metal Gear Revengeance block was one of the segments performed remotely from a home PC.
In a captured Discord message to event organizers shared by PCGamesN, Mekarazium said they decided to fake the run because the main Metal Gear Revengeance attempt had gone so well that they wanted something grand to "top it off." Mekarazium also apologized to the speedrunning community. "I've done an actual bad thing and I shouldn't have done this on [sic] the event," they wrote. "I don't want this to be one of the reasons online runs will be forever cut for everyone else. I acted selfishly and I haven't put [sic] more time thinking about others."
The legitimacy of online runs does cross my mind following this news. During the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, Games Done Quick held its marathons completely online without any high-profile issues, but if faking a run is this easy, I reckon I'll be watching the runner a little more closely the next time I tune in.
In a statement to PCGamesN, GDQ confirmed that Mekarazium has been banned, and said it believes Mekarazium admitted to the incident believing that GDQ wouldn't choose to make it public.
“This is absolutely unacceptable and attempts to undermine the integrity of the speedrunning community that we love and support. The exact result they desired was unclear from the document, but it is clear that they believed we would not be willing to speak out about their behavior," the statement reads.
"However, we believe it is in the community’s best interests to know why this run was removed by GDQ. We have removed Mekazarium’s runs from our YouTube archive, and will not permit him to run in the future.”
On the bright side, Summer Games Done Quick concluded this weekend after raising over $3 million for Doctors Without Borders.