Timing starts when you select Continue on a run file (see below for info on how to set up a run file), and timing ends when the criteria for the category you're running has been met on that same run file. Loading any file other than the one selected at the start of the run footage invalidates the run, unless otherwise indicated.
To set up a run file, watch the intro of the game and then go back to the main menu. This will give you a file that skips the intro every time you do a run.
To verify that your run file is valid, load the file from the "Load Game" menu. If, after the loading screen has passed, Samus is in the Artaria "Basement" (see pic for reference), your run file is considered valid for leaderboard purposes.
Video proof is required for all submissions unless otherwise specified. All videos must include the following:
Where permitted (check category rules), you may submit a run with only proof of IGT (see "Accepted Image Hosts for Still Image Proof" below).
The only acceptable image host for IGT proof is "Proof", our community-managed image host. See this news post for more insight as to why we made this decision. Going forward, use of any external image host (including Discord, public social media, or cloud-based storage services that allow hotlinking from external sites, such as OneDrive or Google Drive) will result in your run being rejected. Use only the service below to host your proof.
|Route||Video Proof Required?|
|Any%||Higher than 30th place AND faster than 1h 30m 00s|
|100%||Higher than 15th place AND faster than 2h 00m 00s|
|All Bosses||Higher than 15th place AND faster than 1h 45m 00s|
|Boss Rush||Faster than 8 minutes|
For more information on which specific controllers are leaderboard legal, check the Controllers page.
Exploits are defined as unintended behavior performed using the intended mechanics of the game. Unlike with glitches, there is no malfunction; everything is functioning as intended, just being used in unintended ways.
For example, Water Space Jump (gaining height underwater with Space Jump) is an exploit, not a glitch. Space Jump giving the player more height when rubbing against underwater collision is an intended mechanic built into the game, in order to make Space Jumping across gaps more lenient. Speedrunners can exploit this to continuously gain height up the same wall, sequence breaking the game.
As another example, Water Bomb Jump is considered a glitch. Normally, bomb jumping in the air underwater is only allowed after bomb jumping from the ground. However, when unmorphing after a bomb jump before touching the ground, the game doesn't reset the flag that allows the player to bomb jump in the air underwater, since it only exists on Samus when she's in her morph ball form, not when she's standing. Despite bomb jumping underwater being an intended mechanic, a programming oversight allows the player to carry this flag around after unmorphing.
Beat the game as fast as possible.
For runs that use Pre-Skew, timing starts the first time you select Continue on any file in the File Selection screen.
Starting a run while already in the Axis Skew state is permitted, as well as achieving an Axis Skew state mid-run by loading a save file, achieving the state, and continuing on with your original save file. However, you may not use the Boss Rush mode to achieve an Axis Skew state.
Beat the game without using certain restricted glitches. This is defined as follows:
Any glitch that either (a) allows Samus to move entirely into collision or (b) results in Samus's rotation suffering a lasting displacement is disallowed.
Instances of collision updating, failing to update, or respawning do not invalidate a glitch. It is possible to die with pseudo waves and ledge warps this way, but they do not allow you to directly clip out of bounds (OoB).
You can easily check what is considered an OoB collision by seeing if it's possible for Samus to die in it.
Beat the game without using any glitches.