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It’s speedrun season! The five runs at AGDQ 2023 you won’t want to miss cover image

It’s speedrun season! The five runs at AGDQ 2023 you won’t want to miss


Gotta go fast! Here’s the top five coolest runs at this weekend’s AGDQ 2023 that you won’t want to miss.

While the winter doldrums are in full effect it also means that speedrunning season is here! Awesome Games Done Quick is the annual winter, weeklong speedrunning marathon and fundraiser. Known for saved frames, fast games, and tons of money raised for charity, AGDQ 2023 should be no different. The fun starts at noon EST on January 8 and runs through to the following Saturday night.
Have no fear if you're not sure what to look out for in regards to runs this year. It's a long week and we've taken the opportunity to highlight the five runs at AGDQ 2023 that should absolutely be on your radar.
Save the frames, save the list. Let's go!

AGDQ 2023: Donkey Kong Country 3 Any% Race

Scheduled Time: Sunday, January 8 - 9:04 PM EST
Two Donkey Kong Country-related news items in one week? Must be our good fortune! It's just not a Games Done Quick marathon without an old-school Donkey Kong Country run and this one is a race! The category is Any%, which means the three runners will look to finish the final DKC game from the SNES era as fast as possible. Not sure what DKC looks like in a speedrun? Check out the solo Any% run by V0oid at AGDQ 2020 below.

Powerwash Simulator - Six players, no soap, all vehicles

Scheduled Time: Thursday, January 12 - 11:48 PM EST
I know what you're thinking: Why would I want to spend an hour watching six people wash a bunch of fake objects? Well, you're wrong and that's fine because Powerwash Simulator is incredible. This run is especially interesting, as it will be six players washing every vehicle in the game, all without the use of soap. How will this team coordinate to wash the filthiest of vehicles? Tune in and find out on Thursday.

Pokemon Arceus - All Lords

<em>Credit: Nintendo of America</em>
Credit: Nintendo of America
Scheduled Time: Saturday, January 14 - 7:57 PM EST
The marathon always closes with a showstopper and this year's big game is no different. Closing out the marathon will be last year's big Pokemon release, Pokemon Legends: Arceus. The goal in this estimated three hour run seems simple enough: Catch 18 Pokemon. However, these Lord Pokemon are big, bad, and most can't be caught until after the main stories' completion. The thing to watch for in this run will be how the game is plotted out and what pathways runner halqery will take to save time and effort. It's not catching em all, but the run will be spectacular regardless!

AGDQ 2023: Half-Life: Alyx - Inbounds

<em>Credit: Valve</em>
Credit: Valve
Scheduled Time: Saturday, January 14 - 3:47 PM EST
Runs done in VR are a rarity at Games Done Quick. So, immediately this run of the technologically impressive Half-Life: Alyx is a standout in a crowded, weeklong schedule. Making use of independent hand motion controllers in a first-person shooter, Alyx is a fascinating game that many people haven't seen simply because VR is still somewhat niche. This run specifically will avoid the use of out-of-bounds glitches that typically let players go through walls or skip segments by breaking the game. Be sure to catch this sub-one hour run, as it is sure to be a spectacle.

Final Fantasy 7 (PS1) - Any% No Slots

Scheduled Time: Wednesday, January 11 - 6:33 AM EST
I know what you're thinking: How on earth is a seven hour speedrun considered fast? Honestly, there's always one RPG at almost every Games Done Quick and AGDQ 2023 features a unique twist. While Final Fantasy 7 has been featured on speedruns before, this one will require runner Zheal to not use the Slots ability from party member Cait Sith. This ability is often used as a way to shorthand the hardest encounters in the game, making long boss fights into trivial battles. How will our runner circumvent the game's toughest fights while still hitting that estimated completion time? Tune in and find out.
And keep an eye on for all your AGDQ 2023 news and notes!
Will Harrison
Will Harrison
Editor | Twitter @Hammer_Barn
Will has over a decade of print and digital journalism experience, with bylines in Polygon, The Escapist, The Toledo Blade, The Austin American-Statesman, and more. He's also the host of the World of Warcraft lore podcast Essence of Azeroth, loves Murlocs just a bit too much, and owns too many cats.