Minesweeper, one of the pioneers of computer gaming, was originally developed as a tool to help people learn to control a mouse, alternating seamlessly between left and right clicks. From these humble beginnings emerged one of the most popular logic-based puzzle games of all time.
And, as with any popular game or challenge, there are those who set records and those who strive to break them.
If you’re looking to try your hand at breaking Minesweeper world records, then Kamil Murański is the one to beat. As of 2014, Murański holds the world record for fastest Minesweeper player, clearing the board on all three difficulty levels in exactly 38.65 seconds.
So, How Did He Do It?
Watching a pro like Kamil navigate the minefield and click away seems almost effortless, but World Records weren’t set overnight! To master a game like Minesweeper, you’ll need to be dedicated, observant and patient.
Reaching your own record in Minesweeper will take lots of practice, and according to Kamil, it doesn’t hurt to have a setup optimized for speed and accuracy. You’re going to be doing a lot of clicking, so make sure your mouse (and hands) are up for the task.
It’s best to use a physical mouse, rather than a trackpad, so you can control your clicks easily without hitting the wrong square. Keep a good posture and adjust your seat so you’re not slouching. Sitting up straight will help improve your focus.
Don’t worry so much about speed in the first few games. You’ll be able to click around faster and faster with every game you play, so if you feel you’re a bit slow at the start, that’s okay! The key to navigating the mines quickly is to look for the patterns.
Keep a mental note of all the different number combinations you encounter when playing. Oftentimes, these patterns will repeat themselves in different games. Once you’ve figured out how to read them, you’ll be able to know which squares contain the mines without a second thought.
Even after finding the patterns, you should utilize your flags. Flags can be helpful during a game as they can be used to mark the squares that hold mines. When you’re certain that you’ve flagged all the mines around a numbered square, you can click down (with both left and right keys) to open up the surrounding squares. As you go along and improve, you can challenge yourself to play without flags. There’s a whole other set of records to break playing without flags!
The last thing you should know before deploying out to the minefield is to limit your random guesses and clicks. Minesweeper is a logical game - clicking around at random will get you blown up pretty quickly. If you’re forced to take a guess, make it an educated one. Think about each square and go for the one with the least probability of being a mine. Chances are, you’ll get it right if you put a little brain power into it!
Now It’s Your Turn!
Feeling inspired to set a record of your own? Play some minesweeper to sharpen your skills and try for a new personal best.