Welcome back to Zelda Runners, your bi-weekly digest of everything going on in the Zelda speedrunning world. This week’s article features the results of the latest round of voting in multiple games and categories, as well as taking a look at some of the longest speedruns in Zelda history. Think less tea-break, more sleep-break. So make yourself comfy, get some suitable food stock ready, and settle in.
We finally got the results of the remaining Ocarina of Time community votes this week, which were based on controller modifications and external game tools. The results were positive across the board and, as such, runners can now verify runs which use the Controller 3 route. This means that any sub 8 minute runs you might have seen over the last few weeks are now valid and have been added to the leaderboard. Ocarina of Time has seen quite a few rule changes over the last couple of months – I’ll summarise them all together in a future article!
Also this week:
- Similarly to Ocarina of Time, both Link’s Awaking Switch and Majora’s Mask changed some rules to account for new discoveries. Link’s Awakening now allows runs which make use of pre-made files. This allows runners to bypass some RNG manipulation before each run. Majora’s Mask have banned any runs which map button inputs to the analog stick, as well as creating a new category which bans item generation and wrong warping, which resembles the Any% run before ACE and Moonwarp were discovered.
- Towards the end of the month, the Minish Cap community are holding a randomizer tournament. This starts on the 23rd, and you can find out more information here.
With the Easter holidays fast approaching, perhaps you’re looking for something to pass the time? Maybe Animal Crossing just won’t cut it for you, and you’d like something a little longer to sink your teeth into. Fear not, dear reader, because today, I’ll be going through some of the longest Zelda speedrun categories for you to try your hand at. This section comes with a small disclaimer – these aren’t simply the 5 longest runs by time. If that was the criteria, we’d have a list of 5 100% runs. Instead, I’ve tried to mix it up a little, with a variety of categories and including both 2D and 3D titles. With that said, let’s get started!
#5 – 100% (Spirit Tracks. indykenobi – 9:29:42)
Despite their fairy negative reviews, the DS Zelda titles are particularly well made games. As such, much of the Spirit Tracks 100% category is spent collecting items in the intended manner. As such, players spend almost 10 hours collecting all Heart Containers, Stamps, and the Engineer’s clothes, as well as upgrading all items and storage. The category also requires the collection of some treasures. However, since this world record run, the Golden Train has been removed from the category requirements, so if you were looking to gain a world record…
#4 – 100% (Oracle of Ages/Seasons. Drenn – 10:37:12)
Obviously running a whole game to completion takes a long time, but imagine having to complete two! In this linked category, runners must complete tasks across both games (collecting all Heart Pieces, Upgrades, the Biggoron Sword etc.), as well as in each game individually (fully upgraded Rod of Seasons and Harp of Ages). This all requires swapping games at least twice.
#3 – Max% No Inventory Explosives (Ocarina of Time. Dungeonfire – 16:20:41)
Many of Ocarina of Time‘s infamous tricks and glitches all use some sort of explosives – bombs or bombchus. This challenge category, as the name might suggest, bans the use of either of these, as well as placing anything in the respective inventory slots. As such, runners must use many extended tricks and clever routing to make this 268 item run possible (including all Medallions, Songs, Upgraded Wallets and Items, and even beta Heart Pieces in Kakariko Graveyard and Jabu Jabu). Since this run, the total item count has, theoretically at least, risen to 271.
#2 – 100% (Breath of the Wild. SpecsNStats – 20:35:09)
Of course, we couldn’t have a list like this without including the mammoth completionist run. At release, this category stood at just over 35 hours, with runners having to take sleep breaks midway. Since then, sleep breaks have been introduced, bringing the time down to almost sub 20 hours, and subsequent rule changes will lower that even further. Collecting everything this game has to offer (including all Korok Seeds, Upgraded Permanent Armours, and all Compendium Pictures) is no small task, and on top of that, runners have to keep the Day/Night Cycle and their weapon durability in mind. As such, this run is always being re-routed and altered, as the record dives ever lower.
#1 – Low% (Twilight Princess. Anorakkis – 25:23:34)
When I think of long speedruns, this is the first that comes to mind. Sure, the others in this list might be more popular, but this run has something that no other has. Thanks to a trick known as Pickup Slide, runners of this category have three ‘breaks’ throughout the run. When Link picks up an item, his animation sways slightly. Fortunately, this animation is missing a frame, meaning his model moves slightly every so often and ignores collision. Unfortunately, this movement is very, very, very slow. The trick is used to skip collecting the four Poes in Arbiters’ Grounds, a song in the Sacred Grove, and a gate in Faron Woods. Combined, these three skips alone make up 19 hours of this run. On the plus side, though, it does mean this is the only Zelda category to have its own in-built sleep breaks.
Legend of Zelda
Any%, No Up+A. rcdrone – 28:23
Adventure of Link
Any%. Lite – 17:54.200
New Game+, NMG. Lite – 37:33
A Link to the Past
All Dungeons, RMG. Xelna – 1:09:34
Link’s Awakening DX
Reverse Boss Order. Noadkajoo – 33:36
Ocarina of Time
Any%. Zudu – 7:48.100
No Wrong Warp. zfg – 34:24
Any%. raggen – 25:15
100%, NSR. ClaireLynn – 1:37:00
Any%, Glitchless. RickBoy_EA96 – 4:09:00
All Dungeons. popesquidward – 59:19
All Masks. raggen – 1:37:55
Oracle of Seasons
Any%. Nitroz – 54:38
Oracle of Seasons > Oracle of Ages
Any%. Nitroz – 3:57:25
Any%. Habreno – 3:38:57
The Wind Waker HD
Any%. mralberto23 – 53:29
All Dungeons. Ian_Miles29 – 2:24:41
Puppet Ganon RTA. Ian+Miles29 – 45:26
Breath of the Wild
Master Sword, Original, Restricted. Vivoxe – 1:43:12.233
Master Sword and Dungeons, Original. Vivoxe – 2:06:56.900
100%, Original. SpecsNStats – 20:35:09
Master Sword, Original. Wolhaiksong – 23:42.130
Link’s Awakening (2019)
Any%, Hero. Naotoo9 – 1:28:15
Color Dungeon. Samura1man – 15:54
The Final Split
Link to the Cure – 20th March ~ 23rd March – A medley of all the most popular speedruns together to raise money for St Jude Children’s Hospital. Including Super Mario Odyssey, Untitled Goose Game, and finishing with a Link’s Awakening (2019) Any% Glitchless run, this event really does have something for everyone.
STA All Stars – 20th March ~ 22nd March – Is one Link’s Awakening run not enough for you? How about this event too!? Breath of the Wild, A Link to the Past, and Ocarina of Time all make appearances in this marathon too.
And finally, have you ever wanted to walk on water? Well, I know a guy…
— Yuzuhara_3 (@linus0505) March 2, 2020
See you all later!
Euan is the host of Zelda Dungeon’s Speedrunning series, Zelda Runners. He can be found on Twitter and Discord, and he’s currently rebuilding his Brexit emergency supply box to use when Animal Crossing releases next week.