The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is one of the finest adventure games ever made, and is often hailed by gamers everywhere as The Greatest Game Ever Made. It’s also become a firm favourite among the speedrunning community.
Players have spent years picking the N64 classic apart in an effort to find the best glitches and tricks to slide through the game as quickly as possible. For around four years now, it was thought that the world record of 17-minutes and one second was the absolute pinnacle of Ocarina speedrunning, but the legendary “sub-17” run has finally been achieved by the same runner who set the previous record.
Norwegian speedrunner Torje Amundsen is now officially the first person in the world to have been able to complete an Any% run of Ocarina of Time in under 17 minutes, with a staggering 16 minutes and 58 seconds. I probably couldn’t even get through the game’s first dungeon in that time.
Amundsen wrote of his achievement on Speedrun.com:
The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, completed in under 17 minutes for the first time ever. This is by far the greatest achievement in my speedrunning career so far. If nothing new is found, this may be the very last minute milestone Ocarina of Time Any% will see.Thank you everyone who has watched me at any point in my journey so far, and thank you to everyone who is just now becoming a part of it through this video. This is the peak of my journey so far, but it does not end here! I will keep pushing this time until I am completely satisfied, since sub 17 was more of a milestone goal, rather than a “this is the final product I want”.
The Ocarina of Time speedrunning community has been attempting to whittle down the possible time to below 17 minutes for years, with various runners managing to slowly but surely push the time down past 18 minutes, closer and closer to the coveted sub-17.
You can check out the successful run for yourself below, which makes use of a couple of mind-bending glitches. Remember, an Any% run involves blasting through the game as quickly as possible by any means necessarry, and often requires an entirely different level of skill to a standard playthrough (not to mention a vast knowledge of the game and its systems).
Amundsen seems confident that he’ll be able to get his time down even further with future attempts, but is a sub-16 minute run really possible? It’s unlikely, even if a speendrunner utilises every glitch and trick currently known for the game in the smoothest, most efficient way.
The more likely scenario is that we’ll have to wait for a new glitch to be discovered before we can get anything less than 16 minutes, but Zelda speedrunners have a habit of finding new tricks when you least expect it.
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Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.