When you think of something, or someone, setting a Guinness World Record, you usually think of something related to 'played game for x amount of hours' or 'sold a boatload of copies in 24 hours.' Especially when it comes to world records for video games. So imagine, if you will, a game being delivered to the top of dangerous mountain just to be played by a person that won a contest.
Can you see it in your mind? Good. Because that's what Ubisoft, Far Cry 4, and one William Cruz did about a month ago to claim the Guinness World Record for Highest Altitude Videogame Console Session. If that sounds very specific to you, that's because it is.
Over the Summer, Ubisoft conducted the Quest for Everest: The Gaming Journey of a Lifetime contest in order to find the one special person that considered themselves to be the biggest Far Cry fan out there. After combing through (we imagine) thousands of entries, and deciding which mountain would be worthy (and tall enough) of having Far Cry 4 rest atop it, Cruz, 23, was chosen as the winner that would go on to play the game ahead of its November 2014 release. We suspect that Cruz was also chosen because of his hiking experience, which would be incredibly useful in a situation such as this.
After being flown out to Nepal, and visiting various locations, Cruz and his crew of 15 set out to hike to the top of Kala Patthar, one of the Himalayan Mountains set at the base of Mt. Everest. The additional team of 15 people consisted of sherpas (awesome mountaineers in the Himalayan region), a video crew to make sure none of this was in vain, and a "train of yaks" tasked with carrying the TV, gaming console, and portable generator needed to pull off this incredibly unusual scenario. If you were curious, and according to the above image, the console that made the trip was a PS4. An Xbox One (and its power brick) may have been too bulky for the trip.
Still, on October 11, 2014, after an unspecified amount of time spent hiking up Kala Patthar, fighting against 25mph wind gusts and 17° F temperatures, Cruz was finally able to play Far Cry 4 while at a height of 18,569 feet (5,660 meters). His early gaming session lasted 79 minutes, though with the wind and cold temperature, a majority of his play time was probably spent thinking warm thoughts. Or, at the very least, "I can't wait to play this while sitting on a couch."
As we said before, it's a very specific record to set, but it won't be too surprising to see "the game that climbed Everest" in a launch trailer. If your game was played on top of a mountain, wouldn't you let everyone know too? Marketing dollars at work.
Far Cry 4 releases on November 18, 2014 for PC, PS3, PS4, Xbox 360 and Xbox One.