The Rise of Unconventional Speedrunning: From Dogs to Monkeys

The Rise of Unconventional Speedrunning: From Dogs to Monkeys

The world of speedrunning has always been about pushing boundaries and finding innovative ways to complete games in record time. From glitches and exploits to meticulous planning and precision, speedrunners have continually amazed audiences with their skill and dedication. However, in recent years, a new trend has emerged – the use of unconventional participants. While humans have long dominated the speedrunning scene, we are now witnessing the rise of animals as key players in the quest for record-breaking runs.

One notable example is Peanut Butter, a shiba inu who captured the attention of viewers during this year’s Games Done Quick charity event. Owned by the speedrunner JSR_, Peanut Butter was trained to press buttons on command and “play” a NES game from 1985. But let’s not be mistaken – it is JSR_ who is playing the game, utilizing his dog as a means of control. The training and bond between JSR_ and Peanut Butter are undoubtedly impressive, as it took a year of dedication to teach the dog to follow commands and remain still for extended periods. However, it begs the question: where do we draw the line between creative novelty and questionable exploitation?

Peanut Butter’s appearance at Games Done Quick is just the tip of the iceberg. As the speedrunning community continues to seek new challenges and ways to entertain audiences, one cannot help but wonder what lies ahead. Could we witness a cat manipulating buttons with its paws? A snapping turtle with pressure sensors? Or perhaps a Grey parrot playing a game without any input from a human? While these possibilities may sound outlandish, they aren’t entirely unfathomable given the trajectory we’re currently on.

The journey towards using unconventional means in speedrunning began with light-hearted endeavors such as someone playing Untitled Goose Game dressed as a goose. The whimsical nature of these performances captures our attention and entertains us, but at what cost? Are we gradually descending into a realm of absurdity where animals are exploited for fleeting internet fame? It’s a slippery slope that we must tread carefully.

The Ethical Dilemma

As the popularity of these unconventional speedrunning methods grows, so does the potential for exploitation and harm. One can easily envision a future where fame-seeking individuals rush to acquire shiba inus or other animals, only to abandon them once they realize the true dedication and effort required. We must acknowledge the ethical implications of using animals in this manner and strive for a responsible approach. The well-being and welfare of these animals should be our utmost priority.

Amidst my reservations about the speedrunning dog phenomenon, I remain an avid supporter of Games Done Quick as an event. The organization raises significant funds for charity, and the meme dog stream undoubtedly contributed to this noble cause. Peanut Butter’s near record-breaking attempt may not have succeeded due to technical issues, but it showcased the incredible bond between JSR_ and his furry companion. It is this underlying human-animal connection that gives us a glimmer of hope in an otherwise uncertain landscape.

Embracing the Future, with Caution

As we navigate this uncharted territory, we must strike a delicate balance between innovation and responsibility. While the allure of unconventional speedrunning methods is enticing, we must not forget the potential consequences they may have on sentient beings. Let us celebrate the creativity and skill of speedrunners, but let us also remain mindful of our role as stewards of the animal kingdom. Together, we can move forward into the future while protecting those who cannot speak for themselves.

The emergence of unconventional speedrunning methods, such as using dogs or other animals as control mechanisms, adds a fascinating twist to the world of gaming. However, we must approach these developments with care and consideration for the animals involved. It is our responsibility to ensure their well-being and safeguard against any exploitative practices. Let us continue to enjoy the incredible achievements of speedrunners while keeping our hearts open to the welfare of all living creatures.


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