Who doesn’t love a good speed run? Whether it’s completing Quake at 100% on Nightmare difficulty like Just Fleck, getting 120 stars in Super Mario 64 like Mike “Siglemic” Sigler or more recently Bethesda Q&A staffer Sam Bernstein blazing through Fallout 3 in an amazing 75 minutes. Speed runs hearken to a simpler age of video games. A time when memorizing patterns and timing were key, back when games were “gamier”.

Bethesda seems to be one developer that celebrates that heritage, and they do so with a speed run competition. As they did with Fallout 3 and The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, Bethesda just held their most recent speed run contest with The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim at center stage, celebrating its imminent release. What was at stake at Bethesda’s Speedrun Challenge IV? A small trophy and a pie of the winner’s choice, baked by Director Todd Howard. Pretty sweet.

This time around it came down to Jeff Brown and familiar champion, Sam Bernstein. As the duo flew through the northern land of Skyrim they didn’t see a lot of the game’s scenery, but they did manage to come up with two very different paths to the end. Cheats were not allowed in this competition as they ran from quest to quest, both trying to arrive at the credits before the other. In the end, it was amazingly close.

Once again, proving his speedy might, Sam Bernstein edged out the competition with an amazing winning time of 2:16:10. Runner-up Jeff Brown completed Skyrim only about 20 seconds slower. Not too shabby for a game featuring a 30-hour main quest.

Can’t wait to try your hands at beating that impressive record? The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is due out for PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 on November 11, 2011. Although, I wouldn’t get your hopes up for beating that time. These guys have spent hundreds of hours playing and creating this game, so they probably have a bit of an advantage. Studying up on the leaked Skyrim game manual won’t even help you.

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Source: Bethesda