Welcome back, randomizer enthusiasts!
We’re going to continue our dive into the world of randomizers, specifically those in the Legend of Zelda community. For those new to randomizers, the long and the short is this: a randomizer is a game in which treasures are shuffled and scattered all over the world, game goals are changed, and everything is much more open. For an in-depth analysis, be sure to check out this article.
In the last couple weeks, a couple tournaments have either been decided or moved to the finals. Of course, Speedgaming played host to some daily races, and new fans have joined the rando ranks. Let’s see how things shook out!
A League of Their Own
In our last article, we touched on a Link to the Past tournament hosted on Speedgaming. Each participant has access to a spoiler log, a document that outlines where treasures are hidden. Each runner has fifteen minutes to plan their route and race head-to-head.
On August 5th, runners zelgadissan and relkin96 battled each other in game two of the Bronze Medal Match. Zelgadissan was already up 1-0 and needed a win to seal it. Both runners started with a treasure jackpot, finding an early Master Sword, Titan’s Mitts, Hookshot, Hammer, and Moon Pearl. In a randomizer, this opens up all of the game world to you from the start.
From this point, both runners completed Skull Woods and Misery Mire before their routes diverged. Zelgadissan went directly into Desert Palace, while relkin96 completed Palace of Darkness. This would prove a decisive choice, as it gave zelgadissan just the edge needed. Both runners played a clean run from then out with zelgadissan grabbing the triforce at 44:11, followed by relkin at 45:43. With that, zelgadissan claimed third place in the tournament.
The following day, Kyong and Osse101 met for game two of the finals. Osse101 was already up 1-0, just needing a win to secure the title. Game two started with an immediate divergence. Osse101 found a sword in the Twins Maze, while Kyong showcased some rather impressive bomb strats in Hyrule Castle. While impressive, the strategy was a bit slower, giving Osse101 a slight advantage early on.
After a few more item checks, the divergence continued. Kyong found a mirror in Palace of Darkness while Osse101 finished Thieves’ Town. Kyong did finish Eastern Palace and Thieves’ Town while Osse101 made his way to the mirror, and the race was still very close to this point. However, the race was all but decided after a rather unfortunate error by Kyong.
A common action in randomizers is to save and quit your game, saving time traveling the overworld. Unfortunately, Kyong reset his game without saving, losing much of his item progress and the Thieves’ Town crystal. Now that Kyong had to retrace their steps, Osse101 just had to finish for the win. In the end, Osse101 cruised to victory, 57:35 to 1:07:27. If not for Kyong’s unfortunate error, it could have been a very close race.
Tricks of the Trade
The biggest hurdle when learning a randomizer is knowing where your item locations are. In a game like A Link to the Past, there are 216 unique item checks. Across the many different iterations of Hyrule, you can expect items counts like this. So how do you keep track of them all?
One of the most helpful tools to have in your randomizer arsenal is an item tracker. There are several available to you across the Zelda randomizer spectrum, but the most helpful resource for me has been EmoTracker. Working in conjunction with various randomizers, EmoTracker offers automatic tracking upon item acquisition. Additionally, many trackers come equipped with map tracking, allowing the user to see where different treasures are located, as well as tracking where you have already been.
This is an invaluable tool for newcomers to randomizers, and something I still use with each seed, for convenience. To grab a copy of this for your randomizer adventures, click here!
The Finish Line
Doug is an editor for Zelda Dungeon. When he’s not writing, he’s busy as a professional coffee roaster and a Twitch streamer. He has also lost countless hours in A Link to the Past randomizer.