Super Mario 64 zero-star speed run breaks all the rules

Tool assisted speed-runs may get the snub from gaming purists, but sometimes they are infinitely more entertaining to watch. Case in point: this recently released zero star speed-run for Super Mario 64 that uses a number of glitches, exploits and gameplay tricks to help Mario get a taste of Princess Peach's sweet, sweet cake in little over 5 minutes:


Created by a cabal of speed runners for TASvideos, this is the latest attempt by the group to whittle down Super Mario 64's completion time to its absolute minimum, and is a 24.17 second improvement over their previous attempt uploaded in 2008. 

The run was conducted using the Mupen64 0.5 Re-Recording v8 emulator and a bevy of game-altering 'tools' to manipulate Super Mario 64's gameplay down to its individual frames. This allowed the team to pull off exacting moves that would not be possible during actual console play such as the '0-input Backwards Long Jump', which is described as: “When you have no input on the analog in between the 'A' button presses for a BLJ, your speed will not decrease, thus exponentially increasing the speed at the end result of the BLJs. This saves time in a few places.”

A rundown of all the moves and tricks used can be read at TASvideos. In the meantime, we'll leave you to debate whether this is an example of hardcore gaming skill or technical wizardry.

Jan 3, 2011

[Source: TASVideos via GameSetWatch]  


  • razorwiretensho - January 4, 2011 6:07 p.m.

    This isn't impressive at all. If you couldn't do it within the confines of the actual game (no tools!), then it's not a speed run. Not to mention they hacked certain parts of the game, as bowser normally takes 3 hits to drop, not 1.
  • Link2010 - August 28, 2011 8:11 p.m.

    First of all, it's not supposed to be impressive it's supposed to be entertaining. Secondly, you can do everything in this video in the console game, the tools are just to slow down the game to the point where the controls are pinpoint and using save states so they don't have to replay the first 3 minutes every time they mess up a jump. Lastly, Bowser only requires 3 hits on the final battle in which he WAS hit 3 three times. Next time you blatantly try to bash something at least google it for 5 minutes and have a handful of knowledge of the matter.
  • Aletheon - January 4, 2011 5:39 a.m.

    I like 100% legit and regular gameplay. TOOL is the best band in existence, but leave the tools out of gaming.
  • therawski - January 4, 2011 3:33 a.m.

    I remember the first 0 star speed run and I must say I wasn't expecting a faster time, true it's tool assisted but I love Tool!
  • hellodesdemona - January 4, 2011 2:27 a.m.

    Pssshaw! 5 minutes! I won't be impressed until they can start the game and it immediately goes to the credits.
  • pr0tostar - January 4, 2011 12:49 a.m.

    The penguin!! I don't count this as a run at all if you're not gonna visit the poor lonely penguin!
  • EnragedTortoise1 - January 4, 2011 12:40 a.m.

    Violated. There is no other word for it. Except maybe skills.
  • Mr_Greed - January 4, 2011 12:32 a.m.

    Honestly i wouldnt count this as a legitimate speed run. Using an assist tool like that is just cheating.
  • RonnyLive19881 - January 3, 2011 11:48 p.m.

    Mario is a freakin NINJA! I never noticed before but it sounds like Mario is saying "So long gay Belgian" Lol
  • SkyNet - January 3, 2011 10:54 p.m.

    Am I supposed to be impressed with their obvious use of exploits and blatant cheating?
  • Overlord153 - January 3, 2011 10:39 p.m.

    Somewhere Shigeru Miyamoto is crying and Mario is feeling violated right now.
  • cosmicshambles - January 3, 2011 10:32 p.m.

    Where can I find a legitimate SM64 speed run? Clearly the gamers who made the above video are skilled but surely a perfect run using just the original cartridge and controller is where it's at.
  • Robx - January 3, 2011 10:27 p.m.

    He reached the end of the endless stairs. Technical wizardry!
  • mahabat - January 3, 2011 10:23 p.m.

    just like the horrible portal one man. these classics dont stand a chance
  • FoxdenRacing - January 3, 2011 10:20 p.m.

    I miss my days as a speedrunner...never posted videos online or anything of the sort, but in the 8 and 16 bit days constantly pushed myself to play games faster and faster...came as quite a surprise when I found out I'm not far off Speed Demos Archive's fastest Mega Man 2 run: less than 8 minutes, at 37 1/2...and with the record holder's video as inspiration on creative item use, think I can shave another 3-5 minutes off. But then again...there's no place amongst modern runners for old farts like me that did it all the hard way: No emulators, no glitches, no game genie, no cheat codes, 100% legitimate gameplay.
  • martinsawicki - January 3, 2011 10:19 p.m.

    Its Mario's Edge!
  • Hydrohs - January 3, 2011 10:10 p.m.

    Hardcore technical gaming wizardry.
  • thatnerdguy1 - January 3, 2011 10:03 p.m.

    Hell, if you're gonna do something illegal, you might as well become a veritable god in the process.
  • Tymiegie - January 3, 2011 9:59 p.m.

    Pretty crazy stuff. I still wonder what the fastest speed run without using exploits is.
  • S0ULEATER - January 3, 2011 9:57 p.m.


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