Speedrunners pride themselves in finding exploits both big and small that allow them to shave off seconds, minutes, and hours from a video game run-through. Whether such exploits used are glitches or unintentional side-effects of legitimate game mechanics is up to the runners to decide. Those who prefer glitched runs often painstakingly, multiple times over, go through the motions of a glitch until they have each frame down. Speedrunners of The Wind Waker, however, have had one foe that has time and time again quashed their efforts to get around it: the magical barrier around Hyrule Castle.

It’s called the Barrier Skip, and it’s a name for a glitch that until now hadn’t been accomplished. The barrier has no top or bottom and was thought to be impenetrable aside from going through the normal motions of acquiring the Master Sword, powering it up, and slicing the barrier apart. Now, Twitch streamer LinkOscuro has bypassed the barrier for the first time via a glitch. In the short clip below, you can hear his enthusiasm when he finally manages the feat.

In the long run the Barrier Skip doesn’t shave off too much time, as the Iron Boots are required for the glitch, which in turn require several dungeons to be plundered. But the fact that LinkOscuro accomplished a glitch thought impossible is something to be admired in itself. And who knows — LinkOscuro or other speedrunners could build upon this discovery and find a more efficient way of breezing through The Wind Waker.

  • Rogob // 113 Days

    This article is so clickbaity.
    It’s wind waker HD that this has been found in, And the barrier really hasn’t been ‘conquered’

    • Alex Trevino

      I don’t see how this is “click bait”. It’s a obstacle that’s been attempted in both the GameCube and now the Wii U version.

      • Rogob // 113 Days

        Yes but when they don’t specify that it’s the HD version, AND use a screenshot from the OG version, It implies that it has been found in the OG version. Which it still hasn’t. And on top of that, This says that the ‘infamous speedrunning barrier’ has been conquered. The infamous speedrunning barrier is the presence of this barrier for the first two times you visit hyrule, Where it blocks off potential access to the end of the game. If we could skip it at either of these times, It would save a number of hours. However this skip is right at the point where we’re about to break it anyways. This is the equivalent of taking a shortcut through some grass in a race, Not ‘conquering’ it and skipping straight to the finish line. It saves maybe a minute. This article implies that we’ve finally found what we need to shave a 4 hour run to a two hour run. And ftr, I’m from the WW speedrunning community, And they are all happy it’s been found, But annoyed with the coverage because now if it ever does get properly skipped in either versions, The general public will not care cause they will think it already happened, Removing the potential to gain back the once MASSIVE following of WW runs