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Watch 22 minutes of Half-Life 2 speedrunning history

Half-Life 2 speedrun world record

YouTuber Summoning Salt has been running a great series on speedrunning history for the past few months. In it, he takes a game – up until now, mostly console-focused – and goes over its entire history of world record speedruns. His latest is 2004’s small indie release Half-Life 2 which, between its many versions, engines, and categories has quite the history. Summoning Salt focuses, as most of his videos do, on the single-segment, no-cheating category and explains all the ways it’s dropped over the years.

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Single-segment runs of Half-Life 2 are actually slightly less well publicised than the segmented super-fast runs. Despite following speedrunning rather heavily I didn’t know much of this, especially quite how long it took for things to get going, or how recently records were being set.

His Portal 2 inbounds video is also well worth a watch on a similar theme. To step outside our comfort zones for a moment, his Super Mario 64 any% and original Super Mario Bros. videos are both brilliant too.

Perhaps what’s best about Salt’s videos is a completely unfiltered, unapologetic, and totally honest passion for what is by far the nerdiest way to sit in a chair for 12 hours a day beating videogames. He’s documenting history, making it interesting, and keeping one of gaming’s oldest traditions alive all at once. Worth celebrating.

Here’s his full channel, which includes both these videos and his own attempts at Punch Out world records, for which he holds the current title.