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Here's How Speedrunners Master 'Ocarina of Time' Without Glitches

Glitchless Any % is all about smooth, fast movement.

Speedrunner and YouTube creator Daniel Baamonde has just released a video—a short documentary, really—on the rise of the glitchless any % speedrun of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, and it is well worth your 18-ish minutes. In the video, he details the run's beginnings, primarily with Japanese players, and its emphasis on optimized movement over the bananas tricks and glitches that would come to dominate the world record scene.


There's a lot of insider information here: how a community defines the ruleset for a particular mode of speedrunning, how those rules are defined, how they evolve, and how spirit vs. letter of the law-style arguments can come from that. This is single-player gaming as Olympic-level sport, and it is fascinating stuff.

Baamonde also goes into which tricks are allowed and which are not, with clear descriptions of the hows and whys. If you've ever been fuzzy on what constitutes a "glitch" and what is just a quirk of the game's mechanics, this is a nice primer.

Glitchless running is always fun to watch. There is a wonderful satisfaction to the runs: as rad as the world record glitches are, I do love watching the whole game bested as the developers intended. Well, not really as intended—this is god-level play here, with plenty of tricks—but it maps more closely to my own experience of the game.

As a (major) bonus, the whole video is set to some nice, smooth jazz that fans of Breakfast and Battlegrounds boat rides should appreciate.