For a long time, video gaming has been stuck with the stigma of being for loners who’d rather sit at home alone and not interact with anyone. While some gamers may still do this, an event that has been taking place since 2010 has been proving otherwise as well as showing the generous nature of the gaming community. T
his event goes by two names depending on the season: ADGQ/Awesome Games Done Quick and SDGQ/ Summer Games Done Quick, but we’ll refer to both as AGDQ in this article to help keep our sanity.
What is Speedrunning?
AGDQ is a speedrunning charity held in the United States, a question that may pop up to someone when talking about the event is “What is speedrunning?”. A speedrun is a play through of a game where players will try to complete the game as fast as possible using a combination of their own skill, glitches, sequence breakers, and following specific routes made for the game. A sequence breaker is a way to skip parts of a game by performing a sequence of button combinations or finding areas in games that may not have the correct kind of collision set allowing the character to leave bounds of the game.
In speedrunning, there are usually at least these two categories, Any% and 100%, but many games can have four or even five different categories.
Any% is the most lenient of the two, usually only requiring the player to get to the end of the game.
100% requires the player to gather all available collectibles, complete hidden challenges, and score the highest grade possible on levels depending on the game. There is way more to speedrunning than that but that’s all that is needed to understand the basics.
Who are AGDQ?
We can go into AGDQ a bit deeper. AGDQ has speedrunners from across the world submit their runs online quite a few months before the event and assign their runs to a different time slot. Then the runners meet up at the event and speedrun the games they have submitted to play. This event goes on for 24 hours everyday for seven days and is hosted bi-annually.
The event is broadcast live to the streaming service Twitch.tv and interacts live with viewers through giveaways, having donations incentives such as saving the animals in the game Metroid, and reading their donation messages on stream.
AGDQ collects donations from the stream and donates the money to the Prevent Cancer Foundation. As of writing this the event has donated over $6,691,610.91 to the PCF and almost $10,000,000 in total. The last event hosted from January 8th 2017 to January 15th, 2017 had raised over $2,217,568 and had a peak of 250,481 viewers both of which are record highs for the event. The next event is set to take place July 2nd, 2017 to July 9th, 2017 and can only be expected to improve upon the last event.
While AGDQ is the only speedrunning charity mentioned in full detail, there are many other respectable communities doing the same. It’s amazing how something like video games can bring people together for charity.