Watch as one gamer blazes through the capital wasteland in the time it takes most of us to deliberate over a single SPECIAL point. Phenomenal. The latest world record playthrough of Fallout 3 "any percentage" was attained by Rydou a few days ago, and you can watch the 14:54 run below. It's the first time anyone has gotten a time under 15 minutes.
Just like New Vegas, in Fallout 3 you can quick save and quick load to skip chunks of dialogue, which is useful in a speedrun. That's what you're looking at when the screen seems to be fading in and out in the video above. Curiously, after a quickload, the collision detection in the game doesn't work for some frames, which allows the player to clip through stuff. Additionally, you can't quick save / quick load too fast, or the game will barf itself.
As for stats, well, it doesn't really matter. Rydou puts 10 points into strength because it's the fastest way to close the SPECIAL book. The game is played on very easy as well, since damage/typical gameplay challenge isn't really the point of a speedrun.
It's fascinating to watch what a speedrunner must do to get the game running as quickly as possible. At the start of the run, for example, Rydou shoots Jonas, a friendly character, to force Jonas to move where Rydou needs him to go. It's also a trip to watch Rydou walk through solid objects, only to fall into an abyss -- and then, suddenly, "catch" a door on the way down. Or better yet, watching Rydou have to "swim" through said abyss -- there's rad poisoning there, for whatever reason.
Immediately after leaving the vault, Rydou cripples their own character. Funnily enough, last-gen Fallout games have a certain tick which Rydou explains in the YouTube description of the speedrun:
When you cripple your legs, your speed is set to 0, then bring back to 60% of your normal speed. By quickloading just before getting crippled, you can confuse the game into giving you 60% without actually being put to 0 (because we don't actually really get crippled). So you get a huge speedboost, and walk at 160% of your normal speed.
This speedboost can appear in two versions : One which is "breakable", it will last as long as you don't quickload again. The second one is "unbreakable", you can quickload or load a game without losing it.
With this in, err, hand, Rydou hauls the character's arse to the Citadel, all while avoiding a number of enemies (and bullets) along the way. "Run" is pretty literal here, really -- a lot of this speedrun is literally sprinting through Fallout 3. Most of us would never play this way, but it's still fun to watch someone bend and break Fallout 3 to do their bidding. I can't believe it's possible to skip meeting your dad out in the wasteland, for instance. My favourite part, however, has to be watching Rydou get the GECK by manipulating the camera. It's a close call where radiation can ruin everything, but somehow doesn't. Amazing to think this time can be improved still. Damn.