This weekend, speedrunner "Darbian" set a new record for NES platforming classic Super Mario Bros., sprinting from World 1-1 to rescuing the Princess from King Koopa in just four minutes and 57 seconds. Darbian's effort was done on a real NES — not an emulator — and he managed to shave a cool 66 milliseconds off the previous record, according to Speedrun.com.
Darbian's run was an "Any %" attempt, meaning he just had to make it to the ending, so warping straight to World 4-1 and World 8-1 was permitted. He also takes advantage of a glitch in World 8-2 to save himself a little time. But Darbian said in a post on Reddit that there's room to improve upon his speedrun, as his performance in World 8-4 came with a few "mistakes."
You can watch Darbian's record-setting Super Mario Bros. speedrun in a YouTube replay above, but the Twitch archive of that run is more interesting. You'll see just how little wiggle room he has in setting the record and, thanks to a heart rate monitor, how his pulse jumps from the mid-70s to more than 150 bpm at the end. You'll also get just a taste of commentary from Darbian — mostly he can't believe what he's just pulled off — at the end.
For some insights on Darbian's run, check out the Reddit thread in which he breaks down some of the techniques, strategies and glitches that helped make the speedrun possible.