What is Speed Gaming? Part Two
In this part of our speed gaming series, we will look at where to find some of these runners and look at just how massive is the speed gaming community. In case you missed it, here is Part One. To start, here are just a few of the major sites for speed gamers:
- www.speeddemosarchive.com - Pretty much the authority on speedrunning. They have a MASSIVE forum section and over 900 games that have world record runs with videos you can watch. Pretty much everything you could want to know is in the forums on this site.
- www.speedrunslive.com - An absolutely great site to watch speedruns. It has streams on the front page you can swap between and it also has a races tab to watch races. I have watched at literally every hour possible and trust me, there's always someone streaming. Another great part of this site is the Tools tab which goes over a lot of the tools that people use while speed gaming such as capture cards, timers, screen broadcasting software, and has the bingo cards discussed in part one of this series.
- www.zeldaspeedruns.com, www.marioruns.com, www.khleaderboards.com - These are examples of sites that are devoted only to certain series of speedruns. If you're interested in a game or game series, chances are it may have a site as well.
Almost all speed gamers use twitch.tv. Twitch is a way to live broadcast on the internet. People in the speedrunning community are known by their Twitch handles and not names. Some in the community do discuss real life details such as their name with their chat, but they are known in the community by their handle.
Twitch allows their users to set up a subscription system for their channel. By doing so people can subscribe to your Twitch channel and pay $4.99 or sometimes less a month to subscribe to your channel. Some users have custom emotes for subscribers and others even do a subscriber only broadcast every once in a while to make subscribers feel they get everything out of their monthly pledge.
In addition to subscriptions viewers can also donate to many runner through PayPal. A good number of speedrunners on Twitch accept donations and most are up front about what you are donating towards. For some it is upgraded capture cards to improve streaming quality or possibly a new system or computer. But I would say the majority of runners accept donations to help get them to streaming marathons put on by different groups throughout the year.
Marathon Speedrunning, Gaming For A Good Cause
Marathons are a big deal in the speedrunning community. Not only are they impressive events that stream speedruns of various games 24 hours a day, but they usually raise money for charity.
CrystalsForLife is an example of a marathon that just ended May 4. The marathon lasted five days and during that time it raised $32,661.94 for JDRF which is a Canadian organization researching a cure for Type 1 diabetes. This particular marathon focused on running RPGs and each run was fairly lengthy.
Speed Demos Archive puts on two events each year and they are what would be considered the Super Bowl of speedrunning. The events, Awesome Games Done Quick and Summer Games Done Quick, take place in January and June. Each event is at least seven days long with some bonus streams before and after the main event. The video at the top of this article is announcement that AGDQ 2014 raised over one million dollars for the Prevent Cancer Foundation. SGDQ 2014 is coming up soon and you can find the schedule of games here.
Next time to close out th series we will look at what you need to do to get involved in speedrunning, both as a spectator and a runner yourself!