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The Witness 100 per cent speedrun world record includes 56 minute wait

In which the runner drives away for food.

Speedrunner FearfulFerret has set a world record for dashing through 100 per cent of The Witness' puzzles in three hours, 16 minutes and 21 seconds. At one point he leaves his apartment to drive to a restaurant, picks up a fish sandwich, and drives back. All while on the clock.

Watch on YouTube
Watch on YouTube

Warning: Spoilers follow.

Why would someone setting a world record do this? Simple: One of The Witness' more obscure puzzles requires waiting for 56 minutes to solve.

Among The Witness' most clever puzzle types is a series of secrets integrating its "trace-the-line" interface into the scenery, requiring the player to looks at things from a certain perspective. Those who played the Batman: Arkham games might recall doing something similar with the Riddler's hidden question marks peppering the landscape.

One such hidden tracing opportunity is embedded in a 58-minute film that players can unlock in an underground movie theater. The film is based on a GDC talk by game developer Brian Moriarty (Loom, Wishbringer) entitled The Secret of Psalm 46. As we listen to Moriarty tell the tale of a hidden jewel, we slowly watch as an eclipse occurs across the screen over the course of the entire presentation. Line up the full moon with a border in the corridor and you can start tracing a line. Wait another 56 minutes and the edge of the eclipse will provided a smooth surface for you to finish that line.

For a better idea of what i'm describing, watch FearfulFerret begin the line at the 16.39 mark, and watch him complete it when the edges all line up at 1.12.10. Crazy, huh?

Maybe it's not that far out as The Witness developer Jonathan Blow employed a similar secret in Braid, wherein players had to wait roughly two hours to snag a hidden star.

Because The Witness is so difficult to speedrun 100 per cent - an especially arduous ordeal due to some randomised timed challenges near the end - very few have attempted this. That's why even though FearfulFerret's stab at this is full of mistakes, it's still the world record.