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Speedrun

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A speedrun is a playthrough of a game with the intention of completing it in the shortest amount of time possible. Unlike the Three Heart Challenge, optional upgrades are acceptable but are generally ignored if the amount of time they save is less than the time it takes to obtain them. Most speedrunners attempt to break record times by using a variety of glitches to save time. However, cheating devices, hacks and custom game controllers are generally not allowed. A video of the gameplay is usually required to verify that a record was truly broken. Most record breaking takes place on streaming services in recent years. Sometimes, speedruns are done on emulators, which their use is sometimes allowed.

Community

The speedrun challenge has given rise to its own community consisting of casual and world-class speedrunners and their spectators. Much of the community is hosted on the website Speed Demos Archive (SDA) as well as the live-streaming site Twitch. The SDA forums are often used to discuss route planning and new techniques in order to improve run times. Many speedrunners – especially world-class ones – will stream their runs live to spectators; most do so on Twitch using timing software. Through Twitch, spectators can support runners monetarily by donating or paying for a subscription to the runner's channel. Donors can add comments to their donations which runners will usually read aloud during lulls in the run, or after it is completed. Many speedrunners allow their donors to choose a file name for each run. Twice a year, SDA hosts charity marathons called "Awesome Games Done Quick" (peak winter event) and "Summer Games Done Quick" (off-peak summer event), where world-class speedrunners congregate and live-stream speedruns to elicit donations from viewers.

The Legend of Zelda games are highly contested and constitute some of the most popular games for speedrunning. Zelda speedrunning has its own expansive sub-community. ZeldaSpeedRuns compiles information on speedruns and hosts the series' definitive speedrun leaderboards.

Terminology

Main article: Speedrun/Glossary

Speedrunners evolve unique terminology and abbreviations for each game. It usually refers to important techniques or strategies ("strats"), most of which are exploitative glitches.

Glitches

Most speedruns rely on exploitative glitches and sequence breaks to finish the game quicker. Glitches are a rallying point for the speedrunning community. The discovery of new glitches, usually a result of extensive research by members of the community, can lead to breakthroughs in a run category. This can reignite interest in a "dead" category, resulting in further competition and run improvement. A category "dies" when a strong, decisive record is made that cannot likely be beat. Competition in the category thus wanes until new "strats" or glitches are discovered.

Some Zelda games are more "broken" than others. In Ocarina of Time and Link's Awakening, massive sequence-breaking glitches exist that skip most of the game. These games can be completed in a matter of minutes – Link's Awakening can be completed in under 3 minutes; Ocarina of Time in under 20. Games such as The Wind Waker, Twilight Princess, and Skyward Sword feature less drastic skips and still require several hours to complete.

Game Versions

Due to slight design changes between game versions, a specific version of a game will be more desirable than others for speedrunning. Japanese versions are frequently used for Zelda games because there is less text to wait through. (The Japanese writing system utilizes Chinese characters, which are logograms, as well as their own syllabaries. These amount to a smaller volume of text than an equivalent translation written with the Latin alphabet.) Additionally, many speedrunners prefer to play with the NTSC version of the game over the PAL version as it usually runs faster (60Hz versus 50Hz).

For example, the Chinese version of Ocarina of Time for the iQue Player was at one point ideal for any% speedruns. This version has the fastest text and the least lag.[1] It is less suitable for other Ocarina of Time categories because of the iQue's slow start screen. The Japanese version is used for other Ocarina of Time categories.

Categories

Multiple speedrunning categories exist for each game. Each category sets unique conditions under which the run must be completed.

Any% is the standard speedrunning category. The goal is simply to complete the game as quickly as possible, without any conditions.

100% is the second most popular category. Full completion of the game is required in this category. All Heart Containers, songs, inventory and quest items must be obtained. 100% speedruns do not necessarily have to meet any other 100% Completion criteria.

Glitchless runs must be completed without the use of glitches.

Various categories exist that are unique to each game. For example, Majora's Mask features an "All-Masks" category. Ocarina of Time features several unique categories, including "All Dungeons", "Ganonless", "No Wrong Warp", etc.

Current Records

Main article: Speedrun Records

The following is a list of speedrun records for The Legend of Zelda games. For a complete leaderboards that includes all the major speedrun categories, see the ZeldaSpeedRuns leaderboards. All runs listed are single-segment/real-time attack, meaning the run was completed in one take from start to finish.

Speedrun Records

Main Games

Game Time Performer Date Notes
The Legend of Zelda 28:26 [2] lackattack24 August 8, 2018 Any% (Quest 1, No Up+A)
34:29 [3] lackattack24 May 2, 2018 Any% (Quest 2, No Up+A, No ACE)
The Adventure of Link 18:02 [4] Simpoldood August 5, 2018 Any%
57:45 [5] Simpoldood December 18, 2017 Any% - No warps or deaths
1:14:30 [6] Simpoldood July 4, 2018 100% - All Keys, 1CC
A Link to the Past 01:31 [7] Lomiig February 1, 2017 Any%
1:23:10 [8] Xelna July 23, 2018 Any% - No major glitches
1:41:53 [9] Xelna September 12, 2016 100% - No savewarps, deaths, or out of bounds
Link's Awakening 01:21 [10] Global-Trance August 15, 2015 Any%
44:01 [11] zmaster91 May 8, 2018 Any% - Warpless
Link's Awakening DX 02:14 [12] SeYsEy December 4, 2017 Any%
52:38 [13] vlackSR January 25, 2018 Any% - No wrong warps, no out of bounds, no save & quit
1:18:32 [14] vlackSR September 5, 2018 100%
Ocarina of Time 17:04 [15] Torje September 5, 2018 Any%
3:56:08 [16] zfg September 22, 2018 100%
Ocarina of Time 3D 37:44 [17] ZeldaCubed August 3, 2018 Any%
4:13:22 [18] benstephens56 March 8, 2018 100%
Majora's Mask 1:15:59 [19] EnNopp112 July 25, 2018 Any%
4:42:23 [20] EnNopp112 September 21, 2018 100%
Majora's Mask 3D


1:24:17 [21] Iwabi74 August 5, 2018 Any%
5:45:08 [22] TheLegendofZaheer November 5, 2017 100%
Oracle of Ages 1:34:09 [23] zmaster91 October 6, 2017 Any%
Oracle of Seasons 1:39:14 [24] zmaster91 September 8, 2018 Any%
Four Swords 20:42 [25] legrandgrand and Baffan July 7, 2016 Any%
Four Swords Anniversary Edition 21:32 [26] GolderArevival September 21, 2018 Any%
The Wind Waker 3:48:17 [27] Demon July 5, 2018 Any%
6:56:29 [28] ChaoticAce January 24, 2016 100%
The Wind Waker HD 58:41 [29] Ian_Miles29 September 19, 2018 Any%
5:55:34 [30] Linkus7 August 30, 2018 100%
Four Swords Adventures 2:03:23 [31] Zmaster91 May 29, 2018 Any%
The Minish Cap 1:44:19 [32] ToadsWoot August 19, 2018 Any%
4:03:23 [33] ToadsWoot March 29, 2018 100%
Twilight Princess 2:56:35 [34] Adam November 13, 2016 Any%
6:39:49 [35] sva July 9, 2016 100%
Twilight Princess HD 3:29:17 [36] Jacquaid September 20, 2018 Any%
7:34:25 [37] sva April 9, 2016 100%
Phantom Hourglass 3:20:15 [38] Hornlitz October 4, 2016 Any%
Spirit Tracks 4:31:57 [39] mosstkm September 16, 2018 Any%
9:29:42 [40] indykenobi August 16, 2014 100%
Skyward Sword 4:50:59 [41] Nimzo August 14, 2018 Any%
7:26:18 [42] keitsu23 April 2, 2018 100%
A Link Between Worlds 1:21:20 [43] ahamplan April 29, 2017 Any%
3:04:43 [44] romulostx March 23, 2018 100%
Breath of the Wild 35:48 [45] Wolhaiksong September 21, 2018 Any%
1:59:27 [46] Zdi September 2, 2018 All Divine Beasts
27:26:37 [47] SpecsNStats August 6, 2018 100%

Other Games

Game Time Performer Date Notes
The Faces of Evil 24:18 [48] Usui April 17, 2018 Any%
The Wand of Gamelon 29:35 [49] Authorblues February 7, 2017 Any%
Zelda's Adventure 1:12:56 [50] Douggernaught December 10, 2016 Any%

See Also

References

  1. "This run was done on the official Chinese release of the game. I chose this version because of faster text and less lag."Narcissa Wright, world record holder for Ocarina of Time any% as of August 1, 2014 (Zelda: Ocarina of Time Speedrun in 18:10 by Cosmo)
  2. The Legend of Zelda, Speedrun.
  3. The Legend of Zelda - Second Quest No Up+A, Speedrun.
  4. [http://www.speedrun.com/Zelda_II_The_Adventure_of_Link#Any Zelda II: The Adventure of Link - Any%], Speedrun.
  5. [http://www.speedrun.com/Zelda_II_The_Adventure_of_Link#Any_Deathless Zelda II: The Adventure of Link - Any% Deathless], Speedrun.
  6. [http://www.speedrun.com/Zelda_II_The_Adventure_of_Link#100_All_Keys_1CC Zelda II: The Adventure of Link - 100% All Keys, 1CC], Speedrun.
  7. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past - Any%, Speedrun.
  8. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past - Any%, No major glitches, Speedrun.
  9. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past - 100%, No savewarps, deaths, or out of bounds, Speedrun.
  10. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening - Any%, glitched, Speedrun.
  11. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening - Any%, warpless, Speedrun.
  12. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX - Any%, glitched, Speedrun.
  13. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX - Any%, no wrong warps, no OoB, no S&Q, Speedrun.
  14. The Legend of Zelda: Link's Awakening DX - 100%, Speedrun.
  15. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Any%, Speedrun.
  16. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - 100%, Speedrun.
  17. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D - Any%, Speedrun.
  18. The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D - 100%, Speedrun.
  19. The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask - Any%, Speedrun.
  20. The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask - 100%, Speedrun.
  21. The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D - Any%, Speedrun.
  22. The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask 3D - 100%, Speedrun.
  23. The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages - Any%, Speedrun.
  24. The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons - Any%, Speedrun.
  25. The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords - Any%, Speedrun.
  26. The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords: Anniversary Edition - Any% DSi Solo, Speedrun.
  27. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker - Any%, Speedrun.
  28. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker - 100%, Speedrun.
  29. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD - Any%, Speedrun.
  30. The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD - 100%, Speedrun.
  31. The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures - Any%, Speedrun.
  32. The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap - Any%, Speedrun.
  33. The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap - 100%, Speedrun.
  34. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess - Any%, Speedrun.
  35. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess - 100%, Speedrun.
  36. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD - Any%, Speedrun.
  37. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD - 100%, Speedrun.
  38. The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass - Any%, Speedrun.
  39. The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks - Any%, Speedrun.
  40. The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks - 100%, Speedrun.
  41. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword - Any%, Speedrun.
  42. The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword - 100%, Speedrun.
  43. The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds - Any%, Speedrun.
  44. The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds - 100%, Speedrun.
  45. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - Any%, Speedrun.
  46. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - All Dungeons, Speedrun.
  47. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild - 100%, Speedrun.
  48. Link: The Faces of Evil - Any%, Speedrun.
  49. Zelda: The Wand of Gamelon - Any%, Speedrun.
  50. Zelda's Adventure - Any%, Speedrun.