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It's taken 30 years to finish Super Mario Bros. this quickly

The old speedrun record for Super Mario Bros. (4:57.693) stood for more than a year before being toppled earlier this week. New world record (opens in new tab) holder darbian shaved literally hundredths of a second off the run to beat world 8-4 in 4:57.627, reaching new heights of Mario celerity just a month after the game's 30th anniversary. Even better, darbian was playing on actual NES hardware, as opposed to an emulator like the last record holder. I wonder if he had an NES Advantage controller plugged in for that extra arcade edge.

If there was a heartbreaking mistake anywhere in that blur of unbroken momentum, pixel-wide jumps, and how-did-he-not-die piranha plant traversals, I'm not hardcore enough to catch it. Mankind must be getting close to the skill ceiling for Super Mario Bros. - theoretically there's a perfect run, without a single error, just waiting to be set in stone by some dedicated joystick jockey - but we're not there yet.

And once we reach the limits of human achievement in Super Mario Bros.? Well, that's what Super Mario Maker (opens in new tab) is for.

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Connor Sheridan
Connor Sheridan

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.