Several of those depicted in the documentary, including Wiebe and Mitchell themselves, claim that it does not accurately depict events. For example, Wiebe and Mitchell were, and still are, on much friendlier terms than is suggested, and another player's record was in place during some of the events but is omitted. The director has conceded to many of these claims in statements, arguing that the fictionalized account is more entertaining.
The project originally began as a documentary about competitive gaming in general - it wasn't until the film was well into production that the crew discovered the events surrounding Wiebe and Mitchell, and decided to re-focus the film entirely on this rivalry. This largely accounts for the amount of coverage the film gives to minor players, such as the elderly Q*Bert champion. By the time production ended, over 300 hours of video had been shot.
In late 2017, it was discovered that all of Billy Mitchell's Donkey Kong records of over one million points were fraudulent. The video footage was made using the MAME emulator, which allows players to use save states.
On April 12, 2018, NPR reported that Billy Mitchell, holding the title "Video Game Player of the Century," has been cast down from the heights of the high score lists. Twin Galaxies, the organization that tracks video game world records, announced that it is removing his records and banning him from future leader-boards. An investigation lasting more than two months found that Mitchell set some of his best-known records on improperly modified software, not the original, unmodified arcade games mandated under the organization's rules.
On August 7 2010, Bill Mitchell regained the Donkey Kong record with a score of 1,062,800. It took him 2hrs and 42min of playing. After passing Hank Chien's point level, Mitchell stopped playing rather than adding to his record breaking score. This score was almost immediately beaten by Steve Wiebe, who then was defeated by Chien.
While the movie claims that Billy Mitchell held the Donkey Kong and Donkey Kong Junior records since 1982 before Steve Wiebe came along, there were numerous scores higher than Mitchell's validated by Twin Galaxies in the early 1980s that went missing during Mitchell's time as a scoreboard editor. His 1982 Donkey Kong score was also beaten in 2000 by Tim Sczerby, who's name is omitted from the film but seen on a computer screen for a moment when Walter Day is entering Mitchell's taped score.
Steve Wiebe challenged for the Donkey Kong record on live television from E3 2009, aired on G4TV. It was the first and only time to date that an arcade world record attempt took place on live television. Mitchell was also invited to play, but declined to do so.
Mitchell's taped Funspot score was actually removed days after entered, but reinstated just before the end of the 9 month period in which the film skips. An equally questionable event took place in 2010, where Mitchell again claimed credit for a world record score via videotape rather than a live performance. As with the Funspot incident, the score was accepted by Twin Galaxies without the same validation methods asked of other players.
Billy Mitchell sold his life rights to the story for a theatrical remake that never took place. One of his demands before signing was a clause that Roy Schildt be omitted from the remake and that no character resembling him would be included in the remake at all.
The trivia item below may give away important plot points.
Although the film ends with the information that Steve Wiebe came back and beat Billy Mitchell's first million-plus score, Mitchell came back in June of 2007 and reclaimed the high score. With a score of 1,050,200 he beat Wiebe by only 1100 points.