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A speedrunner’s quest to (re)build the perfect N64 controller

Image: Samar Haddad / The Verge

A good video game speedrun is a marvel to witness. You watch players fly through your favorite games, hitting impossible jumps and finding shortcuts you never knew existed. It makes you see a familiar game in a whole new light. If you’ve never watched a speedrun, check out this world-record run through the original Super Mario Bros., and you’ll see what I’m talking about. Being, you know, a speedrun, it’ll take all of five minutes of your time.

But what you won’t see (unless you follow speedrunners on Twitch) is the hours upon hours of work it took to create that perfect run — the thousands of attempts to navigate a game with perfect precision, shaving off every unnecessary move, exploiting every weird glitch. It’s punishing work for the…

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