Speedrunners do some crazy things in order to skip levels and invoke glitches. In the first virtual reality speedrun in Games Done Quick history, runner Buffet_Time literally crawls on his hands and knees to shave precious minutes off his time playing Half-Life: Alyx.
Summer Games Done Quick is over, having raised more than $US2 ($3) million for Doctors Without Borders, but there’s an entire YouTube archive filled with fantastic runs to watch. My personal favourite run of the event, Buffet_Time’s assault on virtual reality Half-Life, was actually a bonus run unlocked by viewers reaching a donation goal.
It’s a good thing they did because this run is outstanding. Where most speedrunners do amazing things with buttons and controllers, Buffet_Time must use his body to trick Half-Life: Alyx into submission. He crawls on the floor, hops to his feet, and feels around the edges of his virtual reality safe zone as if looking for hidden keys. It’s like watching a mime work, but without the mime of it all.
Now I want an entire marathon of virtual reality speedruns. Hell, I don’t even care if they stream the actual game footage. Just room after room of helmeted gamers, doing their strange dances while offering themselves to the speed gods.