Dejan Lukovic (born 03.08.1994) earned his bachelor’s degree in German Studies at the Leopold-Franzens-Universität Innsbruck and is enrolled in the two master programs “Media” and “Comparative Literary Studies”. He is currently working on his master thesis about human-machine-interactions in speedrunning.
Gotta Go Fast – Human-Machine-Interaction in Speedrunning
Lecture, Sunday, 20th October, 17:00 – 17:30
This paper focuses on the question of how one can make sense of the human-machine-interaction in speedrunning, especially in speedruns of virtual reality games. For this purpose, speedrunning is conceptualized as the act of completing a goal (most often a game) as fast as possible under certain rules as defined by the corresponding community of speedrunners.
In this endeavour to reach the fastest possible time speedrunners approach games differently to so called “casual runs” (normal playthroughs) and this fact thus changes how the runners and the machines are interacting with each other. Especially these changes in how runners act together with the machine are the focus of this paper, exemplified by the analysis of how these changes occur and how they can be described.
The hypothesis of this paper then is, that there are three distinct kinds of human-machine-interactions which occur during speedrunning and which depend on each other to constitute the phenomenon known as speedrunning. These findings will be accompanied by examples and analysis of speedruns – especially of virtual reality games – and the practices which runners perform within each speedrunning-community. This approach will allow for a better understanding of what happens during speedrunning, what it means to do so and how humans and machines interact while doing so.