Built-in within N is a highscore section; its aim is to provide a robust and centralized platform for all players to compete with each other, trying to complete the levels and episodes with the most amount of time left as possible. In other words, going as fast as possible and taking all worthwhile pieces of gold. If each piece of gold takes more than a 2-second detour per piece to get, then it's generally considered not worthwhile to collect. If you have done well enough, you can submit the run onto the top-20 boards; this process can be done automatically during episode play.
Each level and episode has its own top-20 board, and this in itself is already a challenge for new players, as these days it requires a high level of skill just to place in the top 20 places. If you are the fastest player to complete a level or episode, you'll appear at the top of the list; this is called a 0th, since the top position is marked as 0. The reason the best rank is called "0th" is because everything in N starts with 0 instead of 1. With the passing of time, the boards have become harder and harder; therefore, taking a 0th generally requires a supreme amount of skill, especially without rerouting innovations.
In this section you can not only compete with the rest of the players but also watch their runs. Aside from the entertainment factor, these demos are particularly useful in case you are stuck or don't remember the route either as a casual player or a highscorer. You can also watch all your demos via this section. Using software specially developed for the highscores community by jg9000, called NHigh, one can download all of the scores from the boards and create rankings to show who has the most 0ths, the most top-20 scores, etc.
The highscore rankings without filtering can become quite polluted because of the lack of an anti-cheating system to prevent cheaters and hackers compromising the integrity of the boards; such a system was hoped to be introduced in the next version of the game, and it finally got implemented with the release of N 2.0. A speedhack-detection countermeasure first saw great success in NReality, proving the legitimacy of many players, including but not limited to xaelar, Mr_Lim, lookatthis, Ben_Schultz_11, vankusss, EddyMataGallos, Kool-Aid, eru_bahagon, golfkid, macrohenry as well as kryX's speedruns. NReality has helped to ensure that only fair runs are submitted, creating clean rankings without fake scores and cheated runs. All known hackers and cheaters have been omitted from the following lists.
The Highscores Rankings as of 28 March 2022
- Includes tied 0ths
Total 0ths Ranking
0 EddyMataGallos - 446 1 macrohenry - 140 2 Donald_J_Trump - 11 3 jp27ace - 10 4 Kool-aid - 9 5 xaelar - 6 - oxymoron93 - 6 - Raif - 6 - Arctic_Pony - 6 9 vankusss - 4 10 nadroj347 - 2 - golfkid - 2 - VotedStraw61372 - 2 - Seifer - 2 - Ben_Schultz_11 - 2 - 1211 - 2 16 xandotoaster - 1 - van_come_to_irc - 1 - trib4lmaniac - 1 - tktktk - 1 - linkissoowickeddank - 1 - glupi_zmaj - 1 - djballz1200 - 1 - blobglob - 1 - VerbalKint - 1 - Toad - 1 - Thunder_Mute - 1 - Sammage - 1 - Melchoir79 - 1 - Knu - 1 - Johnny_faneca - 1 - Izzy - 1 - Ivsound - 1 - Hendor - 1 - Eeyore - 1 - Echarin - 1 - CrazyKilla - 1 - Brian1233 - 1 - Brett_Sully_ - 1
Total Top-20s Ranking
0 macrohenry - 599 - EddyMataGallos - 599 2 golfkid - 598 3 Hendor - 590 4 eru_bahagon - 580 5 xaelar - 555 6 lookatthis - 554 7 Mr_Lim - 511 8 Ben_Schultz_11 - 453 9 vankusss - 415 10 glib_jase - 395 11 ToeFaceKiller - 326 12 Analu - 300 13 Johnny_faneca - 253 14 Darkshadow1416 - 197 15 jp27ace - 186 16 swipenet - 177 17 Chouse - 154 18 Izzy - 145 19 trib4lmaniac - 126
Total Game Score Ranking
The total game score table for players can be found here.
The points ranking tables for players can be found here.
Since the infamous appearance of naem, some highscorers began to be distrusted by the main forum body, as a number of their scores have appeared to be made illegitimately. Legitimate highscorers were always frustrated with this topic (see johnny_faneca for more info).
kryX-orange, who had an alter ego called ANGERFIST, admitted that he cheated all of his Metanet runs by slowing the game down, and, consequently, his scores are not counted as legitimate runs, as have a few other cheaters, including crappitrash, L3X, naem, Goo, Bonzai, pokemaniac1342 and Sp33dy. Hacking was also rife within the highscores charts, as some people hack their .sols to submit fake scores to an extent where, at one point, every level contained at least one hacked score. Fortunately, on November 10th 2011, Mare, with the help of a few others in the community, eradicated most of these hacked scores, and any new hacked runs can easily be ignored by using the 'ignore' feature on NHigh until they are vanquished yet again by Mare. NReality prevents the use of speed-hacking, sol hacking and any other illegal methods. There's no tolerance with any cheater or any cheated score in the community unless it is declared as such and posted somewhere other than the built-in highscores boards. Such places include underclock mode, or on the forums. Therefore, the current rankings compiled by the community (listed above) are completely clear of all known hackers/cheaters, and we now have a fair system that many highscorers from the past desired. So if you're one of those old-timers reading this, you can gladly come back and be assured you are competing with legitimate competition.
Removal of the hacked scores
During November 2011, a cleansing campaign spearheaded by Mare finally began with a two-phase removal of the hacked scores, which filled up to about 30% of all available spots. After some additional help from 999_Springs, Izzy and EddyMataGallos, all the hacked scores were completely removed (barring the exception of speed-hacked runs by cheaters, which are ignored on the official rankings; however, the majority of the community sees this as a tolerable compromise for now.) This sparked a notable increase in highscoring activity by jubilant highscorers. It has also been revealed that every highscore run submitted is saved on the Metanet database, not just the first 20 scores. Because of this, the highscorers were finally able to see the (almost legitimate) top-20 board of episode 00 for the first time in many years.