Awesome Games Done Quick, a biannual speedrun streaming event from Speed Demos Archive and Speed Runs Live, raised over $1 million for the Prevent Cancer Foundation. The marathon lasted a week and featured speedruns of over 150 games.
Speedrunning is a competitive field in which players try to complete video games as fast as possible, either through optimization (creating fast routes through levels) or glitch exploitation (using flaws in the game’s technology to skip scenarios). Each game has multiple categories for speedrunning, which can lead to interesting results such as blindfolded runs of Punch Out! and one-handed runs of Super Mario 64. Both of those examples were attempted in the marathon.
This isn’t the first time gamers have used marathon streams to benefit charity. Extra Life is a foundation that sponsors an annual day of play for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, and the Child’s Play charity uses proceeds from marathon streams to provide toys and games to hospitalized children.
It’s truly heartwarming to see the game community come together for something positive. As a casual speedrunner who has attempted marathons in the past, it is also inspiring to see the amount of skill on display. Although speedrunning is a competitive area of gaming, it’s also collaborative. Members of SDA and SRL are willing to advise new runners on finding tricks and skips. Who knows? Someday you could participate in an event!
The stream will return this summer for Summer Games Done Quick. Until then, Reddit has compiled a list of links to all of this past marathon’s runs.