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Billy Mitchell’s perfect “Pac-Man” run and highest score, as well as his “Donkey Kong” score, made famous in the documentary “King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters,” will no longer be recognized by Guinness World Records.
The decision to remove all of his world records is driven by news yesterday that Twin Galaxies, which is Guinness’ official source for verification of these achievements, was stripping all of Mitchell’s high scores and banning him from future attempts after it was discovered that he was not playing on a regulation arcade version of “Donkey Kong” to set his records.
Twin Galaxies wrote Thursday in an statement that Mitchell’s famous "Donkey Kong” score of 1,047,200 was not achieved on an arcade machine — a requirement for Twin Galaxies and Guinness — but rather through the use of emulation software. Using emulated software, and not the original circuit board version of the game, means a player could cheat in any number of potentially undetectable ways. That’s why all submitted high scores must be from playing on original, unmodified arcade machine.
“Twin Galaxies is Guinness World Records’ trusted adviser on video game high scores and as such we rely on it to monitor high score gaming records and handle any and all disputes that occur within its community,” a spokesperson told Variety. “The Guinness World Records titles relating to Mr. Mitchell’s highest scores on ‘Donkey Kong’ have all been disqualified due to Twin Galaxies being our source of verification for these achievements.”
“We also recognize records for first perfect score on ‘Pac-Man’ and Highest score on ‘Pac-Man,'” the spokesperson added. “Twin Galaxies was the original source of verification for these record titles and in line with their decision to remove all of Mr. Mitchell’s records from their system, we have disqualified Mr. Mitchell as the holder of these two records. Guinness World Records will look to update and find the appropriate holder of these records in the next few days. ”
Mitchell has not responded to Variety’s request for comment.
(Pictured: Steve Wiebe, Donkey Kong champ, and Seth Gordon, director, “The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters”)