1,141,800. That’s the final score that Robbie Lakeman was able to achieve during a recent late-night session of Donkey Kong that sent the enthusiast community into a tailspin.
In the world of competitive gaming, laying claim to the top score in any game is a significant achievement but doing so in Donkey Kong is different. Despite the fact that the game was released more than 30 years ago, there’s still a significant following – even more so after the 2007 documentary The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters.
Lakeman is a relative newcomer to the world of competitive gaming. According to Donkey Kong Blog, he got started two and a half year ago as a bar bet between himself and a friend: get into the Donkey Kong top 20 or at the very least, get to the kill screen.
The determined Lakeman wasted no time as he got his first kill screen just before Kong Off 2 in 2012. A year later, he had earned a spot in the top 12 and this past Thursday, he eclipsed former record holder Hank Chien’s score by 3,200 points.
Legendary gamers Billy Mitchell and Steve Wiebe traded high scores over the past several years until Chien beat them both – then broke his record again. Many believed his score would never be toppled as it has remained in place for roughly four years.
The one thing that can almost always be said about a world record, however, is that someone, someday will beat it.