Watch speedrunner Benjamin Romero conquer the island in 8 minutes and 45 seconds, with the help of a few glitches.
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In my first 9 minutes of Sons of the Forest I grabbed some gear, made a crappy tent, ate a poisonous berry, fell in love with Kelvin, and had the crap scared out of me by a shrieking cannibal.
Naturally some players are getting a lot more done in that same timeframe, particularly speedrunner Benjamin Romero (opens in new tab). Sons of the Forest has been out for less than a week but Romero has already beaten the game in under 9 minutes. You can watch the current record-holding speedrun embedded above. It won’t take long.
Note: Spoilers for Sons of the Forest’s ending below.
It’s what’s categorized as an Any% Normal Glitched run, though it takes a while for those glitches to become apparent. In the video, at 2 minutes in, Romero has essentially just run part of the way up a mountain from the starting area. But at 2:27, he leaps off the top of a cliff and takes enough damage to fall unconscious.
In Sons of the Forest, running out of health in combat or by accident doesn’t mean the game is over: you wake up somewhere else, tied to a post in a cannibal village. So dying is a form of fast-travel, in a way (except for the times when you actually die). I’m guessing the region of the map you die in determines where you respawn, hence the mountain-climbing first to get close enough to the desired village.
After cutting himself free, Romero grabs his pack, pops some meds, and runs off again, grabbing some sticks along the way. Holding the crafting manual while running downhill allows him to essentially become a human sled without taking damage (it’s a known glitch), making sliding down the mountain safe and fast.
Using what is apparently another known glitch, Romero enters a bunker while holding a stick in his hands and quickly clips through the wall to avoid the security door (which typically requires a Sons of the Forest keycard (opens in new tab) to open) then falls onto the top of a corridor allowing him to walk over the geometry and avoid the mutants and monsters below. Same with the final door, which should require the golden armor (opens in new tab) to open: Romero, armed with only that stick, is clipping through all sorts of walls.
And then it’s just a short walk through the darkened cavern complex, sidestepping a few mutants and doing a bit more crafting-manual-sledding to reach the final cutscene. That’s Sons of the Forest: finished in 8 minutes and 45 seconds and 26 smaller parts of a second. Bravo!
Will the record be beat? Most likely, as it looks to me like there are opportunities to save a few seconds here and there in a similar run. Other records (opens in new tab) right now are just over 10 minutes, but like the maps in Sons of the Forest, records were made to be broken.