I've always enjoyed watching speedruns casually ever since the days of Speed Demos Archive. For the most part I enjoy being on the viewing side but I have occasionally dipped my toe into speedrunning. I spent a good chunk of time putting together a speedrun of Hitman 2016 which I was very proud even though over half of it is spent staring at loading screens. But you know what... I never have gone for a world record. The urge to be immortalized and wanting to add something to do while waiting for the vaccine to be out has led me down the path to buying Speedrun Science: A Long Guide To Short Playthroughs, which is kinda like a speedrunning textbook that has been advertised for the past couple of AGDQs that I've always been interested in.
So I'm enjoying my book and then get to the chapter with the most important question to speedrunning: What game should I choose? Usually you'd want to pick a game that you'd say is your favorite game, but when running down these options I'm seeing a lot of speedruns that are currently at 3+ hours long and that's just something that I have no interest in getting into. Also, most games that I sink a ton of time into these days are Sports games, or games that doesn't really have a "beginning to end". So I decided to go with a game that's special to this website. Persona 4 and Deadly Premonition are the first games that comes to mind here, but once again I don't have that kind of time. So why not go with an old favorite that I've made three different Best Of videos for: BioForge!
Even looking up the current speed run record for it has a glitch that was found by Vinny in his playthrough of it so it's a perfect fit for me. Currently on Speedrun.com there's only three runs recorded for BioForge so my chances of breaking the record should be fairly high if I spend enough time on it! My goals is to discover and implement new tactics to improve on previous speedruns and to execute well enough to improve on the current World Record. This process will hopefully be documented through this blog, as I am intending on sharing all of my findings (which is heavily encouraged in the book).
The current record was completed by a user who goes by "LiquidSteak" and it clocks in at 43m and 52s, which is 13 minutes faster than the run in second place. LiquidSteak's run is super well done but is fairly straightforward and doesn't have any major glitches used, except for one that was accidentally found by @vinny in Backflips n' Bioforge (linked below). Basically in casual runs the player is forced to drop the big gun when they pick up the bomb, causing you to need to do another lap to go back around and pick up the gun after you're done with the bomb, which adds about two minutes to the clock. But what was found is that if the gun is placed in the same spot you pick up the bomb, the player picks up both the bomb and the gun at the same time so you don't need to do that extra lap.
Other than that the only notable thing used was a few ways to skip animations. For example when you fall off ledges if you mash on up the player will skip his "wobbly ledge" animation or whatever you want to call it. Another skip is at the very beginning of the game when you wake up if you hit Escape you skip a screen shake that takes quite a bit of time.
I'm not sure how I'm going to structure this series of blogs/videos, but as of right now I think I'm going to give a weekly update on my investigation phase of this speedrun before I begin routing and executing. Hell, if there's other people out there on these boards who would like to join me in trying to find the best way to speedrun this thing than I'd love to start that community (BioForge is currently $1.50 on GoG).
So my homework for myself this week is to come up with a list of all items that are NEEDED to complete the run and where at I can get these items (I have a skip in mind that I came up with while writing this so I'm excited to test it out and report back on results next week). I'm also planning to open up a spreadsheet and start filling it with data on attack values and HP of enemies that need to be dealt with along the way so hopefully that work will be done by the next post as well.
Thank you for reading (and possibly joining me on this journey) and I will leave you with this beautiful melody: