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Good button mashers can mash faster than turbo controllers anyway.  (tbh even lousy mashers can).
Quote from bpcookie:
Quote from Cronikeys:
please no glitchless. not only is it arbitrary, but that's what let's plays are for.

It's perfectly valid for you to be against glitchless and argue that it's arbitrary. But this part about let's plays is not only clearly wrong, but needlessly condescending. What you're saying implies that only the fastest category is relevant, and that all others should be written off as casual.

I'm fine with other categories and what I said doesn't imply that at all. I'm not fine with "glitchless."

You also didn't say how it was wrong. Let's plays are playthroughs of the game without all of the things considered glitches used in speedruns. If you want to watch "glitchless" playthroughs, then follow good let's players. I watch let's plays. Lots of people watch let's plays. I don't see how this is condescending at all.
Glitchless is very game dependent. For the large amount of the examples given, it is bleh, but for others I could see it being decent.
calling someone a "let's player" in this community is pretty much seen as an insult almost if not more than calling someone a casual.

and i stopped coming to this site because of the fact that the info is INCREDIBLY hard to navigate(thru mostly outdated stuff when you actually find the thread)
also you say you arent a world record site but want to have the best runs possible, to A LOT of people (myself included) the world record IS the best run possible

for example super mario 64 is one of the most popular speedgames but all of the videos posted here are EXTREMELY outdated(around 4 years old). the 120 and 70 star(probably the most popular catagories) are videos of sig(dont get me wrong sig is a great runner/streamer) that arent even HIS OWN pb's let alone top3 times in the world. the 16 star time is 2 minutes off of the record in a 15 minute speedrun clearly not the best run. this site needs to be updated to be relevant(not "more pretty" but updated) the standards for the runs that are accepted has to be changed(segmented times might have been acceptable 5+ years ago but they aren't anymore, hell some of the segmented times on this site have been beaten single segment).

i think this site has to move away from the whole "we aren't a world record site" thing to be considered relevant. having to go to zsr or the jokaah boards or marioruns, when you have no idea about the community is hard to do since most people dont even know they exist but they know about you guys from the gdq's and stuff like that. I'll prolly get flamed for this but actually making this a leaderboard site would make me come here a lot more than i do now(which is hardly ever). i dont see how having the top 5 times that are verified listed on this site with links to videos is a bad thing but apparently it is. anyway just my 2 cents
I'm addicted to games
If we suddenly declared ourselves a world record site, would the runners submit stuff?
Learning to Stream
Quote from Radix:
If we suddenly declared ourselves a world record site, would the runners submit stuff?

Holy Shit! If you did, I'd have to call in sick to work the next day so I could submit my super ultra totally awesome Home Alone speedrun and then get you to sign a legal disclaimer stating I'm not responsible for the internet breaking from you posting its awesomeness!!

Alright.. if I added any more dripping sarcasm to that, someone will be using it like syrup on pancakes.

I think a lot of the complaints are simply and easily solved by... "Put up or shut up" to use a disturbingly brute phrase...  but then I think by today's standards, anytime someone wants to submit, they deliberately don't because they fear that if they play the game the next day, they may simply obsolete the just submitted run.

SOME users are pretty chill in the regards of "This is my goal.. if I nail it, I will go a bit lower... but if after 2 weeks I don't, then I am submitting this."

Others are perfectionists... and that's perfectly fine. Unfortunately that same perfection may stop them from ever submitting something they don't feel is good enough in their eyes. It sucks, but heck, that's how it works for some people and that's totally cool. Considering how many people can't play a game they like more then X number of times before needing a long break, the dedication is cool.
Edit history:
doicm: 2015-01-26 10:40:12 pm
doicm: 2015-01-26 10:39:44 pm
I'm just trying to imagine a world in which SDA tried to call itself a world record site.

That would mean constantly requesting people to submit runs.

That would mean a high probability of dropping the quality standards to accept all of these world record runs.

That could possibly mean a loss in disregarding the idea of asking for permission whether or not to ask for permission to post runs. (That's another discussion I'd rather not be brought up here, as it has been brought up in other threads and caused some drama in the past, so please don't.)

That would require staff to constantly check whether or not a time is a WR or not (which I don't believe many people would enjoy doing).

Then there would be the issue of whether or not there is footage of world records (recorded videos) in the first place. I guess that'd be another issue to discuss.

There might be other issues. There might also be benefits, but I really couldn't think of anything. Sorry I couldn't contribute anything to the discussion.... Sad

To help make up for the lack of positivity, here's a picture of an emu to represent emulator runs that might come as a result of allowing all world record runs if SDA became a world record site:
Quote from Cronikeys:

I'm fine with other categories and what I said doesn't imply that at all. I'm not fine with "glitchless."

You also didn't say how it was wrong. Let's plays are playthroughs of the game without all of the things considered glitches used in speedruns. If you want to watch "glitchless" playthroughs, then follow good let's players. I watch let's plays. Lots of people watch let's plays. I don't see how this is condescending at all.

What you're implying then is that only "fastest runs" are legit speedruns, which is rediculous and extremely condescending to anyone who enjoys other categories.
The large majority of LPers watch cutscenes -- and many of them even read the text aloud. They will fight lots of battles/kills most or all enemies. Do tons of side stuff. THIS IS NOT A SPEED RUN.

But someone who plays the game as fast as possible without taking advantage of errors in the game? It's still a speedrun, and it's nothing like an LP. Quite often it's very different from one that does. Quite often it makes the run HARDER.  Sure, some games don't really offer much in a glitchless run but others require a VERY different mehedology of playing through the game, even if "glitched" still basically plays most of the game (a great example of this would be FFVI, which also has a wrong warp category on top of it).
Not a walrus
The "LP" argument is starting to get pretty off-topic, so let's rein that in please.

"Glitchless" is not something we'd ever do at this site because it's far too vague. If you want to have a "lower glitch" run then you need to describe exactly what glitch(es) it is you're not using and convince us that it's significant enough to warrant its own category. This is why things like IB/OOB exist for Portal, even though that line's pretty blurry these days. Community support makes a ton of difference here.
Quote from doicm:
I'm just trying to imagine a world in which SDA tried to call itself a world record site.

I think the people running SDA has always been smart in not calling SDA a "world record site" and should be very careful with that in the future as well. There's always going to be some smartass asking "So this is a world record site? According to what officially recognized ruleset?", and therein lies the problem. For football/soccer, for example, you can go and read up on the officially recognized rules that competitive matches are supposed to follow in order to be recognized as official matches, this doesn't exist in the world of speedrunning. The rules used on SDA are only applicable for runs that have been done with that specific ruleset in mind, the rules on TASvideos are only applicable on TASes made with that ruleset in mind etc.

Quote from doicm:
Then there would be the issue of whether or not there is footage of world records (recorded videos) in the first place. I guess that'd be another issue to discuss.

Video footage of some kind should be a minimum requirement in order to claim a record of any kind as your claim needs to be verifiable.
And that, Kibbo, is exactly one One Grand World Records Site will never work.

Notable example: For a good while, there was no video of the Link to the Past Any% No S+Q No OOB WR.  The runner deleted the video but it was widely accepted as a time.
Edit history:
kirbymastah: 2015-01-27 08:59:10 am
A big problem with SDA becoming less and less relevant is the fact that IMO, SDA failed to adapt to the corresponding communities. To be blunt, a lot of people are rather conservative about changing rulesets and allowing and it takes forever for actual change to happen. Take the single segment w/ resets for example. People started running games with saving and quitting, yet 3-4 years ago we had to ask on a thread if s&qing saved enough time to have it allowed as opposed to just single segment. It took a really long time before SDA finally made a universal rule that allowed for "single segment w/ resets" but by then, many games (especially the zelda community) were already not caring and just going purely for RTA. I'm not saying just allow every arbitrary category and ruleset but the really conservative mindset of some of the staff does not help with helping people want to submit runs and care about SDA as a whole.

I'm honestly not sure what SDA can really do at this point. By the time SDA did make a few of the many adaptions to the communities, people stopped caring. A more recent example is allowing "no early levels" for DK64, where one older member was vehemently against having that as a category when it's well-established in the DK64 community. Discussion happened, then nobody on the SDA staff really made any final decision about it and the discussion basically just died. I'd assume at that point, the runner who asked doesn't really want to bother with submitting a NLE run since nobody gave him a final answer, which is all that he was asking for.
wise fwom yo gwave
So I just want to respond to some points for those people that haven't been on SDA for a while based on some of the points brought up in this thread.

Runs have always taken forever to be posted on SDA. I remember sending in my first video and anxiously awaiting it to be posted, only to find that it took months to get up (for a popular game as well, a sonic 2 IL table time). This is just how SDA has always been, and will not change as long as the site itself is run by volunteers.

This gets to another point, its a fucking lot of work to do everything to get a run on the site, and people saying "but I will help out" don't understand that by the time you get done explaining something about one run and what you need done for it, you could have just done whatever task needed doing yourself. Also, most of the tasks are extremely boring (I remember I timed a GTA3 run, cutting out all load screens, and wanted to shoot myself after a weekend of doing this. My only motivation was knowing how much work the runner put into it, and that i liked the game. Imagine the motivation needed for a 7 hour run that you don't care about at all.). This is just the nature of posting things permanently to a site like this.

Whatever "communities that have better resources out there already" arguments there are, this has also always been the case. Sonic has always been better kept track of at the sonic center because guess what? Its only for people who care about sonic! So clearly everything related to it will be better covered there. The elite has always been around for this too. This is a GOOD THING and if people feel the need to submit runs here (say, they like SDA) they can do so, or they can not and keep to the other sites. This isn't a bias against Zelda runners or mario 64 or whatever other community is out there with complaints.

People are very very passionate about their specific games, and trying to run a site that caters to every single game means its very hard for people who don't understand/care about every single game. There are individual rule changes I would still like to see done for Sonic games, but I know that it requires such an intimate knowledge of the games that it just won't happen. Zelda runners have always (this goes back to like 2006 even I can remember hearing the exact same complaints from that community) been butthurt thinking they are the only ones affected by SDA's not being able to pay attention to every community development, but that is just bound to happen when you have a site catering to runs from every single console in history.

SDA serves the purpose of preserving runs, forever (through posting to It also created you a nice editing software (Thanks Nate!) and a nice spiffy banner that can prevent retards from thinking you are cheating when your run is reposted elsewhere. If people have the motivation to submit a run based on the natural human desire for attention/self promotion due to it being posted to for all of human history, that is great! But some communities have found that they don't need this/don't see the valuableness of this. I struggled with this constantly in the Sonic community, where some of the greatest speedrunners in the world sat and played on emulator and refused to see the benefit of saving runs on, for a while we could not get anyone to post anything from Sonic at all (one of the site admins, Nate, had to put up some of the first runs since just no one cared at all to submit here). Still, people will not post things from that community, and if they don't want to and don't see the value of having things verified and put on for the remainder of human history in a place that is easily searchable, fine. That is just how they are as people. 

SDA has just always been weird. For a variety of reasons (not wanting to be associated with the travesty that is TG was one reason historically that set the precedent for how SDA has evolved, and being run by people who are biased towards certain games that they care about is another), it just fits a weird niche. I personally still see the value in having runs posted to, and I also see value in keeping separate sites for other games that warrant such a rapid fire competition. I thought the sonic center was great because you could instantly see your run get beat, instantly start working on it, and then post a time instantly. And this was before you had videos, you literally just posted times that you achieved on the honor system (this still happens on and works wonderfully there as well and is a lot of fun). I also thought SDA was great because it was guaranteed legit (well, at least I felt it was closer to legit if you went through the bother of submitting here), and I think other sites will come about that are also great and do a better job for their community than can a bunch of people who don't care about the community at all. We all knew when people cheated even without posting videos, so saying that people can now verify runs instantly is not a new development, we could instantly verify runs without even watching them on TSC just based on knowing the runners/what was possible for a certain level.

I do think its great that games done quick has spun off from SDA, as it too was a separate thing. I mean it just started as a meetup for speedrunners that turned into someone saying "hey, lets try and make some money for charity," it wasn't even really an SDA thing to start with really and should be separate. Its nice to see that it finally is.

The forums/community are like all forums, their functionality has run its course, and a new method must be done to keep track of knowledge for games. A way to post "strategy guides" (I guess this is what the KB is for?) for certain games, with links to youtube guides that are out there or whatever, seems like a logical step forward for SDA. I mean in the poker community, we used to look at the forums for every piece of info we wanted, and now no one who is any good posts any strategy at all on a forum anywhere that is of usefulness. I see the same sort of happening here, since its just an antiquated form of communication, though I love it since I grew up with forums, still love them, and see them permanently keeping posts as a big difference from people posting 'temporary' videos/strategy guides. I really do think a permanent way to post strategy guides as useful, but its only as useful as the runners themselves deem it to be.

For myself, I deemed it very important to post all my knowledge of the games I ran, and to describe every trick in detail on my submitted runs, since it was painstaking work back in the day to search through old TAS's and barely viewable VHS rips for strategies. Maybe this just isn't as needed anymore, and maybe its just not as hard to find that information as it once was (trust me, it was a huge pain in the ass to just see a random time written down as possible and have to try to track down how that was even possible when you didn't have twitch chat/irc channels specifically for that game itself). If this isn't important anymore for those runners, then they will not continue posting their strategies using written language, and people will just have to adjust to this, and SDA's forums will just not function for as much as they used to, which is totally fine! Communities change and develop.

Personally I just think it needs to be emphasized how great of a feeling knowing people in 200 years will guaranteed be able to watch your runs is, and then maybe people will post things from their community, but maybe they won't too. Either result is fine, and SDA will still have a use, since its run on a volunteer basis anyways, isn't trying to grow into anything bigger, and is just trying to archive as many good speedrunning videos on every video game console as it can reasonably do. So SDA is like the mother spider, shooting off other spiders to create webs for their own communities, and they can come back to the mother web if they want but often they will find it not convenient to do so.
couple clarifications.

taiga forum is maintained in the sense that i write new apis for queue (sda 2.0) integration and fix bugs (tf's login system is also used for both the queue and the kb). as many have pointed out, a web forum is a pretty well-worn medium of communication. i tried to bring it into the 21st century by killing sigs and removing the need to reload the page. beyond that i don't think much else is needed. if you don't like any of the visual styles, you might be surprised how far you can get by overriding the css on your end.

i still encode raw videos for posting on the site, but these are a tiny minority of submissions. based on the number of submissions that include final encodes from the runner, with yua i was probably 90-95% successful in eliminating encoding as a roadblock. this makes me glad, because it was a hell of a lot of work. a moonshot, if you will.

if you're curious, the primary holdup for me the last year or two in encoding things (both for verification and for posting) has been the internet access situation here in the us (not finding the time to do it - not waiting for the computer to do it). if you're not aware, the government has allowed cable companies (which are companies that primarily sell tv service) to form monopolies in local markets. i'm not talking about the speed here (which is terrible too of course), but rather the cap of 250 GB per month. this is done in order to stop people from using youtube, netflix, etc., because those are replacements for cable tv, and the cable companies make more money off of cable tv (subscriber numbers, basically) than internet access. the us is good in many ways, but this is not one of them. so if i'm at my cap (or, as most often happens, over it) then i have to wait until the next billing cycle to download or upload anything or else it's $$$$$$$$. since raw videos tend to be large, sometimes runs have to wait several weeks for my connection.

thankfully the situation has begun to change from a few different angles. you can now move to several different locations in the country and have something like real internet access like the rest of the world has. beyond that, the cable companies are providing token speed upgrades (with the caps still in place) in an attempt to blunt the anger of the mob. i personally will become more mobile as this year goes on, and i may be able to move to one of those places with real internet. would be nice.

either way, encoding's not a big deal.

personally, i'm absolutely thrilled to be a part of sda as this year gets underway. i see a lot of positive things happening and i'm excited to watch as they are rolled out, helping where i can.
Even if no change in the forum software occurs, its organization should be revisited. I know I'm not alone when I say it's difficult to navigate.

The search feature needs an upgrade given the years of data there is at this point. Off the top of my head: tags or a game field for threads.

The categories and boards need an overhaul as well. I think ESA's migrated to forums, but there's still the issue of "older consoles" being a catch all. There's also the lack of integration with the rest of the site. Some sort of mediawiki - taiga bridge should exist.

2) MediaWiki is horribly CPU intensive. Is the KB on the same server as the forum? Both are slow as mollases.
3) Is caching set up properly for images, javascript files, css, etc.? I'm sorry if this is an insulting question, but again the forum and kb feel needlessly slow. Something is going wrong somewhere.
Crawlathon WR, get down on my level.
The speed issues have nothing to do with MediaWiki, the wiki is not even remotely visited enough to be a source of complaint (and MediaWiki isn't slow enough to ever warrant switching).
Quote from Cool Matty:
The speed issues have nothing to do with MediaWiki, the wiki is not even remotely visited enough to be a source of complaint (and MediaWiki isn't slow enough to ever warrant switching).

I know from experience bots can get caught in infinite loops on MediaWiki leading to some serious CPU issues. They usually aren't tracked in analytics software. Just offering that tidbit from experience - you'd need to look at server logs. It's especially an issue in the older versions (1.20.3 is 3 years old and has a lot of bugs - so an upgrade is what I was getting at with that vulnerabilities link).

Also I never suggested switching. MediaWiki is good and wiki is a good style for knowledge bases.
Edit history:
UraniumAnchor: 2015-01-29 11:05:31 pm
Not a walrus
Just gonna drop a couple things here, since I've been working on them:

Intruding N313 and F014
Doing something to improve/replace the taiga forums would be nice.  Recently the forum has been running really slow, and it uses 100% CPU when a page is loading.  I'm using an old computer, but even so it shouldn't be like this.  It has become a pain to use this site's forum.
Quote from UraniumAnchor:
Just gonna drop a couple things here, since I've been working on them:

I like it!  Good stuff UA!

As for the forum navigation 'issue', why not just make separate boards for each generation?  I know you guys want to keep it to a minimum, but this is about as simple as it can get without confusion as to where to find a system's games as the years go on and more come out.  If someone's unaware of which gen a system is from, it takes 2 seconds to search on google or we could just have a link to a pre-made list(such as this one).  Just an idea, really, as I haven't had many issues finding stuff.
Caution: This user contains Kana ^_^
Am I the only one who experiences a really fast forum page buildup? That is both on my work PC (which is from 2013 and runs Win7) and on my laptop (which was built in 2005 or something and runs Lubuntu).

Quote from Cronikeys:
I think ESA's migrated to forums

That's news to me. However, the only real person to quote on that rumour is Edenal. (And he'll have to answer my questions if he deems it true xD)
Edit history:
Cronikeys: 2015-01-30 09:16:00 pm
Quote from dunnius:

This is what I was talking about when I said it's slow. My computer is mid-grade and it performs very badly. I think there is an issue with the caching or ajax-loaded content. Either way, "it's fine as is" should not be the answer set in stone in my humble opinion @nate. I'm very good at web dev stuff so if you need any assistance due to lack of time I'd be more than happy to help (maybe open source?)

Quote from slaughterhouserock:
by generation

I had this thought, too, but honestly I think by generation is a bad idea. Some systems are clearly more popular than others (NES, NES, NES, NES) and therefore deserve their own dedicated boards (example categorization: Misc. Retro, NES, SNES, N64, Portable, PS1, Sega, Gamecube/Xbox/PS2, Newer Consoles, PC). 2 cents.

Alternative would be game/console fields/tags for new threads in the older/newer console boards that I mentioned in a previous post

Quote from Alko:
Quote from Cronikeys:
I think ESA's migrated to forums

That's news to me. However, the only real person to quote on that rumour is Edenal. (And he'll have to answer my questions if he deems it true xD)

I know they're using for the ESA 2015 web page and it has forums built in:

Pac's also working on a game submission process that will be connected w/ the site
Edit history:
pogokeen: 2015-02-02 01:08:38 am
I've been reading and watching this thread off-and-on, and wondering if I should add anything to it.  Personally, I don't really have any real issues with the current version of the site.  It's difficult to take the time and effort to carefully listen to and hear what everyone's discussing, and provide thoughtful additions to the conversation...  For those without issues, there tends to be less of an onus to say something; there's a tendency to not feel a need to be very vocal.  I'm sure there are probably others who are in a similar position.

I definitely feel that SDA is doing a lot right already, and I wanted to make sure that there were more notes in this thread about what SDA is excelling at and what makes it special.  There are a lot of great ideas for improvements in this thread, but while we're discussing ways we want SDA to evolve, we should ensure that we discuss and remember the things we love about SDA too.  Improvements tend to be an evolutionary process, but as we talk about more revolutionary ideas, it's very easy to lose sight of the spirit of the particular SDA that attracted us to the community.

Personally, I feel like SDA's commitment to curating high-quality speedrunning videos is one of the things that sets it apart and makes it special.  It's becoming more and more rare to find good curation today, and SDA has garnered respect for its intense scrutiny in selecting runs.  For many games, the runs on SDA are held in high-regard, whether or not they are the world record.  Runs on the site are historic milestones, and greatly help to bring people in to new games and new parts of the speedrunning community.  Most people outside of the site who know SDA, know it for the quality of the runs it archives.

It's very easy for curators to lose this kind of respect -- it's something that I would hate for the community to take for granted.  I can see how the act of curation could be seen as a hindrance, as it requires a large amount of effort on the parts of many people to work well; but it doesn't have to be a hindrance.  This curation has been getting faster, better, and easier, thanks to the effort of the staff to put in place new processes and back-end infrastructure:  I can see it getting even better in the future, and reading the ideas in this thread helps to build that vision.  I hope that this high-quality curation will not disappear moving forward.  Additionally, I note that many of the ideas that provide alternatives to curation, could potentially be implemented instead as an addition to curation.

I want to note that the news feed is a huge part of bringing the runs in the archives to new viewers -- it's currently the main discovery route on the site for viewers to find new and interesting runs.  I really enjoy reading the news feed, and the additions of twitter and facebook definitely help to bring more methods for people to discover new runs on the site.  I hope that in the future, discoverability of runs will continue to be a focus!  This is an area that I've only seen a few suggestions for improvements in the thread, but discoverability is definitely a hugely worthwhile endeavor.

For speedrunners, the main attraction of the site is definitely the forums, this tool is extremely useful, and it opens up a variety of great communities to people, all within or related to the SDA community itself.  I personally love the Knowledge Base, so I would love to see it become more prevalent and more widely used.  Thinking about it, I've yet to use the SDA IRC...  I wonder if it should also get more attention?

For me as a speedrunner and speedrun watcher, SDA is part of a "balanced breakfast" that contains a variety of sites.  SDA doesn't have to do everything: it does quite a few things extremely well, and provides a variety of tools and resources that other sites simply don't.  I hope that SDA will continue to be such a great site and community to be a part of! Smiley  SDA and the entire speedrunning scene has been growing extremely rapidly, and I'm certain we've all been feeling some growing pains.  As long as we continue to work together and discuss how to handle these things moving forward, I'm certain the site will continue to be a fun and useful hub for speedrunners and speedrunning fans.

Thanks for your time, thanks to everyone who is contributing to this thread and discussion, and thanks to the staff for being so patient and considerate (and for working so hard and doing so much for the SDA community)! Smiley
Caution: This user contains Kana ^_^
Quote from Alko:
Quote from Cronikeys:
I think ESA's migrated to forums

That's news to me. However, the only real person to quote on that rumour is Edenal. (And he'll have to answer my questions if he deems it true xD)

Well it was news to me because it was such a new news that it hadn't even been disclosed to the rest of the planning group. So w/e.
Quote from pogokeen:
Thinking about it, I've yet to use the SDA IRC...  I wonder if it should also get more attention?

SDA IRC used to be a lot more active until the The Great SDA/SRL IRC Split of 2012.

I've posted a lot of feedback, criticism, and ideas in this thread but it's all been for the betterment of the site and community. There are things I love about SDA, including the standardization and cross-community adjudication instead of an "anything goes" attitude that better lends itself to popularity and instant gratification (the modern trend).