This is another one of those games that makes you want to kill your friends, like Super Smash Bros. In fact, the best way to describe Speedrunners is "Mario Kart meets Super Smash Bros."
The gameplay is essentially one huge looping race, and you have to outrun your opponents until they hit the border, and thus killing them.Each math has 3 rounds, and if you win 3, you win the match. The game has a lot of Parkour-esque platforming that is really enjoyable and fun; double jumping, wall-jumping, sliding and grappling your way to victory.
The real fun comes with the items though, as you can use these to mess up the other players and get in their way. Every item is useful, and every item needs to be used correctly. They also require precise timing to hit, and precise timing to dodge. Every item in the game can be countered, making none of the items feel overpowered at any point whatsoever.
Much like the item usage, everything in this game is precise. You need precisely timed button presses and jumps in order to win. You usually have no one to blame but yourself for losing, and it's great...usually. One of the major issues is the lag when playing online. On several occasions, I died due to horrible lag in the game. Luckily, this only happens while playing online with random players. When playing with friends or locally, it seems to run just fine.
The level design is fantastic; every stage looks great, and they are well-though out, with multple shortcuts, and how to get them, along with many traps. Sometimes, these traps can feel a bit cheap (the spikes in particualr are really bad), but they are overall pretty good. The character designs are also pretty awesome, as every character looks cool, and you want to play as all of them jut to see what their animations are. However, I wish that the characters played differently from eachother. There is zero difference in playstyle between characters, and that is disappointing to say the least. No stats, no special abilities, nothing. It makes the game feel devoid of strategy and tactics. And while most of the game is reaction and skill-based, it would've been nice to have some strategy involved, outside of item usage.
Something else that's disappointing is a lack of a story mode. I like stories in video games, and if the game doesn't have a story, that's understandable. But the problem is that the characters and the stages are so well designed, hat I would like to know about the world. In fact, during loading screens, you'll occasionally see characters making a remark or two about another character, and it just makes me wonder what is going on in this world. But comparatively, that's a minor complaint, as the gameplay is good enough to make up for it.
The gmae also lacks content, as every race is pretty straightforward. I would've liked to see a few extra modes such as a battle mode, or something to mix up the gameplay. I also think that the game is very had, as you start out in the entry league, and so you are matched up wih players who are also in the entry league, and are more or less just as good as you are at the game. If you win a match, you get around 40 to 60 points, but losing will make you lose around 5 to 20 points. And trust me, you'll be losing ALOT at first, due to the slightly confusing controls and play style that takes alot of getting used to. This makes it almost impossible to reach higher rankings and be paired up with people who are really good at the game to get some challenge every now and then.
However, despite all my complaints with the game, I still highly recommend Speedrunners. The gameplay, while it has a learning curve, is extremely fun and addictive. You'll play for hours on end, not realizing that you just wasted 3 hours of your life away. The complaints, though plentiful, aren't that bad and they are outwieghed by the good that the game has. And frankly, most of these issues come from this game being an Early Access title. Most of these issues will most likely be fixed down the road. Speedrunners is definately worth your time, and for $10, you'll definately get your money's worth out of it. I rate it an 8/10.