While speedrunners are already facing a great challenge trying to finish a game as quickly as possible, some like to take things to new levels of difficulty. Super Mario World speedrunner Katun24, for example, has taken to running the game while blindfolded, and in the process has set a new record for the sightless category.
In total, it took Katun24 13 minutes and 31 seconds to complete the blindfolded Super Mario World run, an impressive time even for non-blindfolded players. Obviously he takes a few shortcuts on the way, skipping large sections of the game in the process, but that’s what makes the run all the more incredible. Executing skips is by no means an easy task while looking at the screen, but doing them blindfolded takes real skill.
It may be an outstanding blindfolded Super Mario World run but there will likely be challengers to Katun24’s record. He does make a few mistakes here and there, which means that there are places where the run can improve. But after completing the sub 14-minute run we’d say that he deserves a little time to rest on his laurels.
Although most speedrunners like to pursue world records with all of their senses in tact, there is a growing blindfolded category in the community. Not all of those blindfolded runs are as fast as Katun24’s Super Mario World record, but they are still fun to watch. Unfortunately, some of the blindfolded runs can take close to 100 hours to complete.
One blindfolded run that caught our eye not that long ago was Jack Wedge, who beat every boxer in Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out blindfolded. Some may remember a runner by the name of Sinister1, who beat every fighter except Mike Tyson blindfolded, claiming that the titular character’s move set is too random to beat blindfolded. Clearly he did not foresee someone like Jack Wedge coming.
The world of speedrunning may be focused on the fastest times, but challenge runs have expanded the landscape in a way that feels new and exciting. Now we have players that are trying to beat games without getting hit, or trying to beat games using weird controllers. But what’s most impressive is that when these gamers set out a goal like beating Super Mario World blindfolded, they usually do it.