Walkthroughs, often called “Let’s Plays,” are videos where people record themselves playing video games. These videos are seen by people all over the world, via social media like Youtube and Twitch. Walkthroughs cover games of all types, from Mario-like platformers to Halo-like shooter games, all for the purpose of entertaining other video game fans. Some people use them as a guide for difficult areas of their games like puzzles, bosses, and other challenges.Walkthroughs are even used to raise money for charities, like the speedruns at Games Done Quick events.
Walkthroughs do have a few issues, however. First among these is a word video gamers have feared for years; spoilers. A walkthrough usually contains everything a game contains, including story cutscenes. Watching these before a game is played can really ruin the experience if viewers are not careful. On top of that, walkthroughs can last an extremely long time, sometimes taking days to watch completely. This can make it difficult for people to find the area of the game they actually need assistance with. Worst of all, viewers might copy a few of the walkthrough recorders bad gaming habits. For example, a Mario walkthrough might teach players to defeat every enemy, even if it would be safer to do otherwise.
Ash Ludwig, a junior at Ava High School, believes that “If a walkthrough is absolutely necessary, they are just fine to use. However, if you use them too often, the experience is lessened.”
Walkthroughs can be useful if proper caution is taken. They can even be fun and charitable. Unfortunately, they can just as easily be unhelpful and time consuming. Walkthroughs really are a helpful hindrance.