“Have you ever played a game so much that you feel like you’ve run out of replay value? Some people choose to come up with additional challenges such as beating a game as fast as possible, scoring as many points as possible, or pushing a multiplayer game to its competitive limit.” -Narcissa Wright (formerly known as Cosmo Wright)

On June 27, 2017, speedrunner LackAttack24 completed Nintendo’s The Legend of Zelda in 27 minutes and 57 seconds. Some people may argue that his accomplishment is invalidated by the use of glitches, however, there are multiple categories for each speedgame, the one which LackAttack24 ran being “any%,” which demands that the player completes the game in the shortest amount of time possible. No outside equipment may be used, such as hacks or cheat codes, but glitches are fair game.

LackAttack’s run is currently the only speedrun of The Legend of Zelda in under 28 minutes and was achieved only 45 minutes after he set a new personal best time of 28:01.

One of the first things you might notice in watching his run is that LackAttack doesn’t do the dungeons in order. Typically, the game’s 9 levels are completed sequentially, with items found in each dungeon often being useful or even necessary for the next dungeon. In this case, however, LackAttack prioritizes getting bombs first, then the raft, which is found in Level 3, and then the stepladder in Level 4, before finally going to Level 1.

Routing is a crucial part of speedruns, and the fact that people spend several hours, days, or even weeks to route a single category adds another layer to the speedrunning community. Not only are there runners, but routers, glitch-hunters, code-diggers, and supporters. The only way speedruns of the quality they are today could exist is through the grueling efforts of an entire network of people connected by a single video game.

LackAttack24’s run involves multiple glitches and manipulations, the most notable being screen-scrolling and block clipping, however, there is also the constant murmuring of numbers, noting whether they are good or bad, and getting annoyed when he gets hit. This is due to another important part of the run: forcing item drops. Essentially, the game counts how many enemies Link kills in a row without getting hit. At a certain number and under certain conditions, a runner can “force” an enemy to drop certain items, the most common force being bombs.


Some people disagree with the use of glitches, as that is considered playing the game in an unintended way. If that defines you, dear reader, know this: firstly, the majority of speedruns out there contain glitches and are widely considered more entertaining to watch, as glitchless speedruns often contain large portions of downtime (such as slowly traveling to the next area).

Secondly, it is not clear-cut what the “intended way” to play a game is. For example, was it intended for, in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, crouch stabs to use the damage value of the last used attack? Because that way, you can attack with the speed and lower lag of a crouch stab, and deal the damage of a jump attack, but at the same time, it is a basic attack of Link’s. Was this intended? How can players be sure?

Thirdly, since there is no Glitchless category on SpeedRunsLive, the fastest off-the-records glitchless speedrun that was easily accessible was just over 38 minutes.

Speedruns are beautiful things both to watch and to try out. Runners such as LackAttack24 can be easily found on Twitch or other streaming websites. SGDQ, or Summer Games Done Quick, is a speedrunning charity event that was streamed from July 2nd until July 9th, and it is a fantastic way to learn about speedruns.

I’m an aspiring programmer and all I do is look and analyze situations. I like to think of myself as an avid gamer, reader, and thinker, though I spend most of my time eating and sleeping. Haven’t done much with my life apart from going to school and write this biography.

Leave a comment below.

Latest Posts

If the second season of Buffy the Vampire Slayer shows us anything, it's a renewed sense of confidence in itself. Like its characters, Buffy is a hell of a lot more sure of itself in its second year. particularly as the season goes on. While "Halloween" showed that this show was more than willing to get silly for an episode, "Bewitched, Bewildered and Bothered" doubles down on that to glorious effect.

Fantastic Fest 2017: ‘Rift’ Gets Lost In The Icelandic Countryside

Opposition is all well and good, but 'Rift' frequently feels at odds with itself.

Nintendo Download: The First Pokémon Game on Nintendo Switch and so Much More

It wasn't too long ago that we barely had any new games released on a Nintendo console and now it seems like we can hardly keep up. It's another big week for the Big N with releases of Pokken Tournmanent DX, Thimbleweed Park, Steamworld Dig and so much more.

Trailer for ‘Isle of Dogs,’ Wes Anderson’s Dystopian, Stop-Motion Canine Movie

The first trailer for Wes Anderson‘s upcoming anticipated feature, the stop-motion animated Isle of Dogs, is now available and it’s absolutely fabulous.
Super Mario 64 Featured

‘Super Mario 64’ Level by Level: Course 9 – Dire, Dire Docks

With the upcoming Super Mario Odyssey being only the third Mario game in the same vein as Super Mario 64 (following Super Mario 64 and Super Mario Sunshine), it is high time to reexamine one of the evergreen staples of the video game canon.

The TV Roundtable Podcast Episode 10 – The Inaugural Not-Emmys (and Ball Hairs)

You already know the co-hosts of The TV Roundtable live on the #edge of #hottakes - but did you know they had enough #hottakes...

‘Milocrorze: A Love Story’ Is Unlike Anything You’ve Seen Before

Milocrorze is the brainchild of Yoshimasa Ishibashi, best known for The Fuccon Family TV sketch show, which featured an all-mannequin cast.

Review: ‘Absolver’ – The Alchemist’s Punch

Absolver is a heavy hitter and as such, a lot of its punches are wild swings that miss their target. The ones that do connect, however, leave a lasting impression. A fantastic idea executed competently but, unfortunately, not much more than that.

Tom Watches Movies: ‘Batman and Harley Quinn’ Isn’t The DCAU Return You Might Have...

'Batman and Harley Quinn' doesn't hold a candle to the 90s show it's inspired by, but fans could do worse.