Summer Games Done Quick is a yearly event that live streams people speedrun video games in a marathon for charity. Speedrunning has become widely known as the act of playing video games as fast as possible within the limits of the chosen category. The Games Done Quick marathons originated from Mike Uyama who created Classic Games Done Quick in his basement in 2010 where he invited a group of people to hold a speedrunning marathon for CARE. Now the event has reached the point where they can house over 2,000 guests and participants in a hotel. For two years, they have raised approximately $2 million per biannual event.
When coming up with this summary, I watched all the runs live and through VODs. I looked for the most eye-catching, humorous and awesome moments of SGDQ. Even though I don’t discuss all runs, it does not mean they were bad. I advise checking out all the runs if you can as I enjoyed the whole event. You can access the runs via Games Done Quick Twitch channel with the full streams or their Youtube channel with the VODs.
Let’s look at what made SGDQ 2018 special. Below, I break down the highlights separated by each day of the marathon.
Sunday, June 24
Banjo Tooie – This was the first game of the marathon which was as always, exciting with a room full of people.
Warcraft III – Covert Muffin ran Warcraft and he made it a hilarious run. He almost got yellow-carded by Vulajin. Every time he is speaking on screen, you know it’s going to be enjoyable due to his crazy laughter. “If you’re into worshipping beavers, go for it, man.”
Resident Evil 4 – The runner was close to beating the world record for a while.
Ninja Gaiden Black – Insane run, definitely worth watching for anybody who loves agile platforming.
Monday, June 25
Gunstar Super Heroes – A good under-rated game. The speedrun showcases this well.
Gauntlet Legends – The run can be done in under one hour for each individual character. The runner makes use of audio clipping to skip through parts of the game.
Cool Spot – Moves so fast, the walls don’t have time to spawn.
Disgaea 5 – Disorienting to watch because it moves so fast. “Nooooo, dude!”
Monolith – Nice modern flying shooter worth checking out.
Master Spy – A good PC side-scrolling stealth game making for an interesting run.
Mega Man 9 – New world record in 32 minutes 50 seconds by Blacktastic.
Rise of the Tomb Raider – Crazy Out-of-Bounds glitches, must-watch mountain climbing.
Tuesday, June 26
Tomb Raider – Enjoyable runner and the run included awesome and hilarious glitches. Go follow her.
F.E.A.R. – Great run all around including commentary, glitches and gameplay.
Penumbra: Overture – “So this game’s pretty much like The Matrix. If you don’t believe in the wall, it won’t exist.”
Amy – The exhaustible explanation on the route was amazing to hear by the couch.
Pet the Pup at the Party – The runner decides to pet ten pups because the 100% is fifty and that’s too much. The premise of the game is to pet the dogs at the party since parties suck.
Sonic Adventure DX – Flandre is an enthusiastic and fun runner. This game is also a great watch for a speedrun.
Metroid Samus Returns – Mr. Shasta is a wonderful runner and commentator. I know him from previous GDQs. Unfortunately, he had a clip in this run that didn’t work for several minutes but this increased the hype for it. This is called the Pedestal Clip.
Super Metroid – The meme for this run category is to joke about the ‘missing’ pink squares.
Wednesday, June 27
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword – This was a late night run going for several hours and the audience came prepared with pajamas, blankets and pillows to chill on the floor and the couch. It was a comfy run.
Wiz ‘n’ Liz: The Frantic Wabbit Wescue – Fast-paced game, easy to get into speedrunning it
Super Monkey Ball 2: Monkeyed Ball – Rom hack of the original game. It was a great race between Geoff and Yutori.
High Hell – Awesome looking game and great run.
Thief: The Dark Project – Broken game, enjoyable to watch.
Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes – “Hey, shutup in there, will ya?” Bleeding people are french fries.
The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures – There are four Links the player needs to control at once, in this game. The runner plays co-op at times implementing cool tricks like Zombie Links which is a glitch to help skip the rest of the level.
Thursday, June 28
Celeste – Great speed game and race between the two runners. They even had the developers of the game, on the couch for the run.
Getting Over It with Bennett Foddy – So short that the runner attempted the speedrun twice.
Miner Ultra Adventures – A beautifully bad game while the runner, Konasumi has a great personality.
Roundabout – The game is based around driving a limo that is constantly going in a circular motion.
Stilt Fella – Difficult meme game.
Club Drive – Driving on polygons on the Game Gear!
Jungle King Tar-chan: World Tour Rumble – The couch:”I’ve been trying to figure out how I’m going to turn into a tiger.” “Okay, one of us has to catch on fire.”
Silver Grapple – All you do in this game is aim and use a grappling hook to maneuver around the levels.
Strider – This race is the follow-up to the tutorial of the game from AGDQ 2018 – a nice way to close this up.
Deus Ex & Deus Ex Mankind Divided – Heinki is another runner with an invigorating personality. Other than that, the Out-of-Bounds tricks are cool.
Super Mario Bros. – This was run one-handed by Kosmic which was absolutely insane. There was hope for a PB or world record early in the run, then it died.
Super Mario Bros. 3 – Hilarious race between Mitch and GrandPooBear. GPB kicked the floor which crashed Mitch’s console when they were both in World 4. He then waited for Mitch to catch up through the warped route to get back to the same spot which was good sportsmanship. Unfortunately, following that in World 8, GPB took another life and again, kicked the floor, crashing Mitch’s console. With only about five minutes left on stage, Mitch takes an entirely warped route to Bowser. This whole race became a meme thereafter.
Super Mario World – Insane small Mario run. Rezephos ran the game with fluidity.
Friday, June 29
Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel – Shockwve got yellow-carded by Slurpee, then thought he broke the computer. Amyrlinn also got yellow-carded. Slurpee sent in a donation saying the runners receive a red card just as he walks past the back of the couch. Somebody from the couch signed Amyrlinn’s Claptrap mainframe cosplay. Prolix added on great commentary to the run making it an overall fun time. Afterwards, the runners showcased a glitch exhibition for the game.
Bionic Commando – “AAAAAAAAAAAAAA.”
Bound – Beautifully under-rated game. It would definitely get more notice if it was run at a prime-time hour of the stream. Reminds me of something like Gravity Rush.
Catherine – 1 player 2 controllers. This has been run at a GDQ before but it’s always neat to point out games with niche categories such as this one.
Double Dragon II – Exploding Demon Dragon Dog Kick is the main attack used in the run.
Rockman No Constancy – It’s a rom-hack of the Mega Man game. Proto and the couch held a song-guessing game for each level.
Goof Troop – This is a great game concept making for a well-optimized speedrun.
Kingdom Hearts HD 1.5 Remix – We got some vocalists to sing Disney songs during the Gummi Ship segments again! Generous donators chose “Can You Feel the Love Tonight?”, “How Far I’ll Go” and “Love is an Open Door”. The performances along with the run, were phenomenal.
Super Mario 64 – Close race as Cheese and Puncay kept going back and forth. This is the first time that Simply was also there and didn’t participate in the race but instead commentated. He expressed love, appreciation and praise for both runners which made this segment so much better. It was incredibly wholesome.
The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD – A huge 200 pause buffers to skip 40 minutes of gameplay getting to Dragon Roost. In this route, Linkus did not need to complete any dungeons which is nothing short of amazing.
TASBot – TASBot is one of the most exciting moments of any GDQ. TAS or Tool-Assisted Speedrunning is an even more abstract concept than regular speedrunning itself. TAS requires slowing down the game to specific frames for the fastest optimal routes. Or, it’s also used for cool tricks that can never be accomplished in real time. To access these original creations, go to tasvideos.org. For this block, DwangoAC included TASes of Celeste, Super Metroid and F-Zero GX. All were incredible, as usual with the TAS block.
Saturday, June 30
Pokemon Yellow/Red – The runner was playing both Yellow and Red at the same time with one controller. This was probably the most difficult run I’ve seen at a GDQ as it also went approximately 3 hours. Yellow is a much harder version than Red and MeGotsThis could not complete it so he Game-Overed in Yellow and then finished up Red. He lasted about two hours and 50 minutes with both games, though.
Star Wars block – The Star Wars games are intriguing to watch as it is. They are very fast too.
Hob – As always, Halfcoordinated runs his games with one hand so him running Hob makes the run special here. Very few people play games let alone speedrun them, one-handed. Meme: “Is this a pigeon?” when a butterfly showed up. Half’s translation of the final scene was humorous.
I Am Bread – Bagel racing!
Ratchet: Deadlocked – I hate being critical of runners or the couch because they’re just trying to feel comfortable and friendly in a marathon setting but I found the couch to be especially obnoxious during this run. The runner barely spoke which was fine and it seemed like he was enjoying himself regardless.
Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy – Another great, challenging speedrun which is worth a watch if you love technical platforming.
Super Mario Maker – The race between the two teams was insanely close. Stay Hydrated was able to complete the second to last level with less than a second left. The anticipation was killing me. The team was still behind entering the last level where the other team, led by Carl Sagan at the time, had made it through most of the level on first try. It was a speedrunning level and Stay Hydrated pulled it off even with their time loss.
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time – This is the first ever bingo run in a GDQ. At the beginning of the run, they detail the history of running OOT Bingo in the community.
Super Mario Odyssey – On Twitter, I saw prior to the run that the couch was practicing their scripted commentary for it. During the run, the jokes and commentary were dry and awkwardly delivered. I always prefer genuine commentary, not this.
Final Fantasy VI – This was the final game of the marathon lasting about seven hours. All the incentives were met and they broke two million dollars. Additionally, they also broke their SGDQ 2017 record of 1.7 million. FFVI here was the most fun finale I’ve witnessed with dancing that mimicked the in-game interpretation of dancing and a heartwarming opera done by Sumichu.
Sunday, July 1
Finale – For the first time in several years, they’re bringing GDQ back to Maryland. Before wrapping the marathon up, Matt got Sumichu’s attention to where she gave him the microphone. He inquired, “Sumi, where is your badge?” to which the crowd burst in laughter. It was a nice, genuine way to end the night between the organizers.
To conclude with my thoughts on the event, I’ll expand on details I didn’t previously explore. The whole classic block was great, it’s difficult to highlight any game that stands out. Overall, the games chosen for SGDQ 2018 were broad in taste. It was disappointing though how some of those with more potential didn’t get much recognition. Regardless, I’m satisfied with how it turned out and hope it only improves for the better in the future. Hope you all enjoyed it and/or check it out for yourselves when the next one rolls around in January 2019.Tweet