You Gotta Speed, Keed with Retronauts Episode 23

retronauts 23 cover

Hey folks—it’s Bob again, and happy to report this is the first episode of mine in a while where I didn’t sit down to edit and discover some horrible audio problem that didn’t present itself during the recording. So hooray for that! Anyhow, you might not think this topic is your cup of tea, but in recent years I’ve become a huge fan of speedruns, and discovered they’re much, much more than watching people cruise through games at an alarming speed. And if you don’t believe me, listen on and prepare to have your mind changed and/or blown by our deep dive on this topic—and be sure to check out the links below if you’re interested in seeing these speedruns for yourself. Thanks again to Nich Maragos, who provided the generous donation (and topic suggestion) that made this episode possible.

Libsyn (1:27:50 | MP3 Download) | SoundCloud

This episode’s description:

“The art of speedrunning is barely two decades old, but in that time we’ve seen our share of stupefying feats from game masters that would put Captain N himself to shame. Will this burgeoning subculture be the key to keeping love for classic games alive? Thanks to a generous donation from Kickstarter backer Nich Maragos, join Bob Mackey, Jeremy Parish, Ray Barnholt, and guest Christian Nutt as the Retronauts explore the joys of breaking beloved games open like so many digital pinatas.”

This episode’s music comes from the arranged tracks on the Wild Trax (Stunt Race FX) – Rare Tracks for Driving album.

Relevant Links:

The Let’s Play Archive

Awesome Games Done Quick

Speed Demos Archive


The first tool-assisted speedrun (for Super Mario Bros. 3)

Gameological Society feature on Mario 64 speedrunners

Aaand here are some handy links that organize all of the Awesome Games Done Quick runs into a single list (keep in mind there’s more than one page for each of these). You can find almost all of the speedruns we talked about through the following:

Awesome Games Done Quick 2013

Awesome Games Done Quick 2014

Summer Games Done Quick 2013

Please consider leaving us a nice review in the iTunes Music Store. It really helps the show!


Filed under Retronauts

11 Responses to You Gotta Speed, Keed with Retronauts Episode 23

  1. Sean-Paul

    Interesting episode on a topic I know very little about!
    The Internet Archive has a good listing of speed runs as well.

  2. Freezestar

    I guess this let’s play is interesting:
    It’s a let’s play of Link to the Past that that also shows off some of the glitches in the game.

  3. DarthEnderX

    One of my favorite Let’s Play channels on youtube is cubex55

    They do these things they call longplays. Which is basically a Let’s Play…without the goddamn commentary.

    The playthroughs are mostly perfect, at least to the point where they don’t have don’t have to repeat any sections, but they aren’t like speedruns where they glitch their way through the game. So you see the entire game.

    I find it awesome for when I want to see all of a game, but don’t have the time, or the ability to play through it all myself. It’s how I first experienced Rondo of Blood.

    And since they have, like, 7000 videos, usually any time I want to find something, it’s there.

  4. offal

    While it’s true that Doom (and eventually Quake) really kicked off Speedruns as a cultural phenomenon in the west, it’s fairly easy to trace the threads further back . Published ‘pattern books’ for arcade PacMan are in the same vein, even more so ‘Superplay Videos’ popular in Japan especially for arcade shmups, ie.

    I imagine there are other precedents for replay recording (including ghost laps in racing games) other than Doom. Off the top of my head Umihara Kawase (released a year after Doom) includes the feature.

  5. Cory

    Great show on a great topic that I have also recently started to follow. It’s like you read my mind! Twitch has a number of regular live speedrun streamers, but I agree that they are more fun to watch in AGDQ replay.

    The mind-blowing tool assisted speedrun from AGDQ this year was the programming of pong and snake into a SNES with Super Mario World using only controller port inputs. Difficult to describe but astounding to witness. Here’s the link:

  6. JohnLearned

    On the subject of TA stuff, friends of mine and I used to look at TA Superplays of fighting games to how to pull of certain moves and to find out what links to what, effectively using them for sort of training purposes. I know Superplays are a little off topic, but I can’t help but be impressed at the work that goes into making them, and am baffled that people badmouth TA videos

  7. Watch Talbot1939 on youtube and be amazed at his ability to not get touched throughout his entire playthroughs.

    I am convinced that he is a replicant.

  8. daftman

    I always thought that Let’s Plays were just gameplay videos of someone working through an entire game, and that never sounded very interesting. But these text ones sound much more intriguing. I’ll have to check some out.

  9. SR

    You should also put up a link for TASVideos

  10. Nat

    Hey, Bob! Nat(t0) here! Sent you an email regarding the contest. Hope it didn’t get lost in the ether.