To speedrun a game, you must hurry to the credits sequence as quickly as possible, even if it means appearing stupid while doing so.
Link walks faster in reverse?
The game is then played backwards.
Is it possible for Mario to skip half of the stages by sprinting through a wall?
Then that wall had better be prepared.
Perhaps you’ve been interested in speedrunning for a while, or perhaps you were inspired by a Games Done Quick video.
It’s time to put the pedal to the metal and start playing.
So, here are some of the most enjoyable games for speedrunning.
- 18. Undertale
- 17. Pokemon Snap
- 16. Untitled Goose Game
- 15. Portal
- 14. Super Meat Boy
- 13. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
- 12. Super Metroid
- 11. Super Mario Odyssey
- 10. Pokémon Yellow
- 9. Cuphead
- 8. Dark Souls
- 7. Bloodborne
- 6. Super Mario World
- 5. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
- 4. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
- 3. Celeste
- 2. Minecraft: Java Edition
- 1. Super Mario 64
Even though it has a lot of detail in a subtle way, this role-playing game has a simple look and is easy to play.
Retro turn-based fighting like in EarthBound and old Dragon Quest is used in the game, but creator Toby Fox adds new ideas with timing-based combat and unusual mechanics.
The main mission can take up to seven hours, but some speedrunners have finished it in less than an hour.
Since it came out in 2015, gamers have quickly made Undertale a cult favorite because of its unique charm and crazy fighting system.
17. Pokemon Snap
This one is very different, both as a way to speedrun and as a game in general.
Pokemon Snap is a “first-person photography game” or, more accurately, a “passive rail shooter.”
Players can just sit back and enjoy the ride as they look at Pokemon and take Oak-approved shots of them at their best.
This Pokemon-loving trip is completely (and literally) on rails, which makes speedrunning easier and more relaxing because you can’t go off the beaten path and fail.
But the biggest things are that there aren’t many risks and you can’t die, so you don’t have to think about starting over.
Even people who have never played the game before can get to the end quickly if they know a few tips and tricks, like how to avoid camera moves and get the most out of photo points.
16. Untitled Goose Game
This crazy game by House House is known for its funny “troll humans as a sneaky goose” idea and unique puzzle-stealth gameplay.
Even though running around as a noisy bird and getting to the end of the game in minutes isn’t the most exciting or interesting thing to do, it is one of the easier games to speedrun.
Players can get around certain obstacles in the game by holding a boot (or later, a piece of fine china) in their beak, dropping it, and quickly picking it back up while walking through certain items to “clip” through them.
If everything goes right, the goose can get its hands (or beak) on the prized bell and bring it back to its den in just a few minutes.
Current record: 6m 26s
Everyone knows that if you’re adept at puzzle solving, Valve’s stunning puzzler/shooter can be cleared in a couple of hours – but did you ever believe it could be done in less than seven minutes?
This astounding record is held by CantEven, an Ohio citizen who has a lead of just over a second over the second place.
CantEven had to break the game right away, clipping out-of-bounds to obtain the Aperture Science Handheld Portal Device (AKA: Portal Gun).
Then, from outside the game’s limits, they exploited its principal portal-shooting feature to skip over every level.
14. Super Meat Boy
Current record: 17m 27s
Speedrunning has always been popular in platformers.
Isn’t there a reason why Super Mario’s stages have a timer?
If you’re confident in your platforming abilities, aim to beat Finnish player Matte’s time of 00:17:27 for clearing Super Meat Boy.
You’ll have to repeat the process of traversing all levels, defeating Dr. Fetus, and rescuing Bandage Girl until your fingers can perform the best route for each level with your eyes closed.
You might also attempt Matte’s 01:10:16 record for a complete 106% progression in the game.
13. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
Current record: 1h 56m 21s
The core of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe’s amazing gameplay is attempting to clear the courses faster each time.
It only makes sense to try to speedrun the entire thing.
The current record is held by Japanese driver Kusaan, who completed all 48 tracks in the game’s 12 cups at 150cc in under two hours.
Mario Kart 8 Deluxe is the Switch’s best-selling game so far, so you’re bound to meet some competition – but nothing beats a little rivalry for a speedrunner.
12. Super Metroid
Current Record: 40m 55s
It’s not surprising that one of the most complex and beloved SNES games became famous in the speedrunning community.
To even think of breaking Zoast’s record of 00:40:55 for reaching the credits, you’ll need to know Planet Zebes like the back of your hand.
Most faults aren’t permitted in Super Metroid speedrunning, so you’ll have to sharpen your skills if you want to succeed.
11. Super Mario Odyssey
Current record: 57m 54s
Everyone enjoys pushing the original Super Mario 64 to its extremes, but what about Mario’s most recent adventure?
The best Mario game in a long time is Super Mario Odyssey.
It’s packed with material, has a stunning open environment to explore, and uses motion controls in an innovative and organic way.
You’ll need to master those motion controls if you want to climb impossible barriers and pull off insane stunts in your quest for the shortest route through the game’s open universe.
Mitch, a Dutch player, had to pull out all the stops and consistently nail every single Cappy-throwing trick in the book to accomplish their 00:57:54 record.
10. Pokémon Yellow
Current record: 1h 53m 37s
When it comes to speedrunning, games featuring RNG, such as RPGs with random encounters, are not for everyone – but Pokémon is an exception.
It’s not that our beloved monster-catching game is without flaws.
No, RNG will determine which Pokémon you encounter, how long it takes to capture them, and if particular moves are effective… It’s quite a bit.
Still, we ignore it and continue to try to speedrun the game since, well, it’s Pokémon!
If you’re looking for a Pokémon-centric challenge but think beating Hwangbro’s Yellow record is too difficult, you can always perform a Nuzlocke run instead.
Every path leads to the Hall of Fame!
Current record: 28m 13s
A Cuphead chat for the ordinary gamer entails asking others how many tries it took them to beat Wally Warbles or King Dice, to mention a few.
It’s a difficult game!
If you ever reach a point where defeating Cuphead’s bosses is no longer a challenge, you might want to try a speedrun.
Hardcore gamers flock to challenging games, thus competition for the top slot is fierce. Grondius has the quickest Regular playthrough at 00:28:13, and Jason2890 has the fastest Expert run at 00:33:09.
Those of us who can barely get through the game can look forward to Netflix’s TV Show adaption.
8. Dark Souls
Current record: 21m 17s
Dark Souls is another game that has gone from being nearly impossible to a rite of passage for any self-respecting “hardcore” player – and speedrunning it could be your ticket to fame.
Most people would be content simply to complete the game.
The challenge, though, is in your pace for those of you who’ve linked the flame around ten times merely to try out new builds.
Dark Souls’ quickest recorded playtime took Czech speedrunner Catalyst 00:21:17 to complete – of course, this includes skipping all available bosses.
Catalyst also owns the record for the quickest 100% completion, having defeated all bosses in Lordran and completed the game in 01:03:25.
Current record: 19m 39s
This spiritual heir to the Dark Souls genre requires the player to move faster and more aggressively, attempting to recover health from adversaries rather than avoiding them.
This leads in a speedier playstyle, but it cannot be cleared much faster.
Bloodborne’s quickest playtime took American speedrunner ImpactfulForest just under 20 minutes, which is very close to Dark Souls’ fastest run.
Bloodborne’s horror is based on Eldritch abominations and Lovecraftian concepts, but nothing brings me closer to cosmic horror than the fact that someone can beat this game in less time than it takes me to reach the first boss.
6. Super Mario World
Current record: 41s
The SNES debut of the Italian plumber was received with overwhelming praise, and it immediately became the best-selling SNES game ever released.
After more than 30 years of attempts, the fastest run for SMW comes from Brazilian player FURIOUS at 00:00:41.
That’s right; you can get to the game’s credits in under a minute!
Of course, this requires a specific fault in the game to get the credits to roll.
The fastest time for a complete 96-exit run is held by Italian player Lui, who completed the feat in 01:21:44.
Dinosaur Land had never been preserved so effectively before.
5. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past
Current record: 1h 23m 07s
The legendary Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past laid the groundwork for a series. It’s famous!
It’s also entertaining to speedrun.
It may appear that breaking the current record of 01:23:07 is a difficult order. However, there are other strategies to prepare to challenge RealAlphaGamer’s record-breaking time.
The path to save Hyrule is long and full with puzzles that must be memorized in order to be completed in the shortest period of time.
You must also discover the best paths to travel, as well as which adversaries to battle.
If repeating a series of prepared steps bores you, try a speedrun of a randomized ALTTP ROM for a more surprising experience.
4. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time
Current record: 7m 9s
The Any% runs of Ocarina of Time, which rely on entirely breaking the game to trigger the credits scene, are among my favorite speedruns to see.
It’s a little insane.
You don’t even have to leave the Kokiri Forest to clear the game, as French speedrunner Amateseru demonstrates in his record-breaking 00:07:09 run!
Simply perform a series of strange actions to stress the engine, strike a rock with your sword to lock the camera out of bounds, walk a memorized path without seeing what you’re doing, and BAM – the credits roll.
One has to wonder how speedrunners find out about these things.
Current record: 26m 56s
Celeste, a beautiful 2D Action-Platformer game where efficient mobility is the key to success, is one of the most recently published options on our list.
Madeline, the protagonist, moves accurately and may rush in any direction from mid-air, allowing for some thrilling gymnastics.
This is only one of the fundamental talents you’ll need to learn if you want to beat British player Buhbai’s 00:26:56 record.
Celeste’s looks and audio are stunning. So training my way up to that level of competence doesn’t sound too hard, especially because I’ll be able to relive its highly emotional and human plot.
2. Minecraft: Java Edition
Current record: 14m 39s
There was a time when the phrase “clearing Minecraft” didn’t even exist.
But, since its formal release in 2011, this hugely influential game has gone a long way. You can even speedrun it now.
Minecraft, as you may know, is an open-ended game that does not require anything from you.
Going into The End to slay the Ender Dragon will, however, cause the credits to roll, which counts as “beating Minecraft.”
While most of us take more than ten minutes to build a basic dirt house, Couriway from New Jersey can defeat the Ender Dragon in less than 15 minutes with no cheating!
1. Super Mario 64
Current record: 1h 38m 28s
If there’s one game that everyone agrees on, it’s Super Mario 64.
Simply, an American speedrunner from Minnesota, currently holds the record for collecting all 120 stars.
It takes me several hours just to reach the first Bowser encounter. However, this guy completes the game in 01:38:28.
My first encounter with speedrunning in general was watching a video of an SM64 speedrun.
I was astounded to see the game being disassembled piece by piece with each exploit, and video games never felt the same after that.