Zelda: Ocarina of Time speedrunner sets new world record of 9:56

A speedrunner managed to beat Zelda: Ocarina of Time in under 10 minutes, setting a world record completion time. Lozoots, a prolific Ocarina of Time speedrunner, beat the game in 9:56 in an Any% run. Any% is a highly competitive category for Ocarina of Time speedruns, and the leaderboard on Speedrun.com is continuously changing as players refine their runs.

What makes Zelda: Ocarina of Time Any% runs so short is that you’re allowed to perform any glitch in-game. That means you can clip through walls, for example, but you can’t modify the game in any way. As such, the Any% run has been an arms race of glitches. Previously, the shortest runs in Any% were in the 17-minute range, but a recent discovery has cut that time almost in half.

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The glitch used for this Ocarina of Time Any% world record involves specific save file naming and a set of movements in-game called Stale Reference Manipulation. The process, done correctly, allows arbitrary code execution, which changes the connected location for one of the doors in the Kokiri Forest. With the glitch, instead of entering the interior of the house, the player is transported to the ending cutscene.

Of course, for other categories, the completion times are much longer than for Any%. The record holder for Glitchless 100% is Smaugy at 5:55:30. That category showcases the traditional experience of beating the game and is just as impressive in my eyes. I spent around 60+ hours with Ocarina of Time the first time I played it without doing everything, so the fact someone can 100% it in just under 6 hours is incredible to me.

With this sub-10 minute run, Lozoots doesn’t have much room to optimize for a lower time. The Ocarina of Time Any% board is still heavily fluctuating. However, we’re likely getting close to seeing the lowest humanly possible time to beat Ocarina of Time, at least until the next big glitch is discovered.