Win a $1000 Bounty for Finding This 'Mario 64' Glitch

Speedrunners could finish the game even faster if someone catches this bounty.

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Aug 5 2015, 3:29pm

If you love Super Mario 64 and don't mind doing some digital sleuthing, you might be able to win $1000 for discovering a very rare glitch in the 3D platforming classic.

YouTuber pannenkoek2012, an expert in exploiting glitches in Mario 64, is offering the bounty to anyone who can recreate the glitch he first witnessed on another Mario 64 player's Twitch stream. It takes place in the clocktower-themed level Tick Tock Clock. Mario is jumping from ledge to ledge as he's wont to do, when suddenly he's transported way up the level, skipping over a whole series of challenging jumps.

Glitches that allow players to skip over entire sections of the game are not uncommon, and especially useful to the speedrunning community—dedicated players who challenge themselves to finish games as fast as possible, often by taking advantage of every known exploit. It's an amazing discipline, and one of the community's biggest event of the year, Summer Games Done Quick, just took place last week if you want to see what it's all about.

If speedrunners know how to reliably recreate the glitch pannenkoek2012 is after, they could cut precious seconds from their attempts. Not only that, this glitch in particular is different from the known "up warp" glitches, when the game accidentally transports Mario to a high ceiling when he's reaching for a lower ceiling. Nobody knows what's causing the glitch in this video, meaning it could potentially be recreated in different levels, opening up a whole new category of shortcuts.

To be honest, if you think you can handle this because you beat the game with all 120 stars a few times, you're probably a little in over your head. In order to turn in your bounty, you'll need to capture your gameplay with a Nintendo 64 emulator on PC, and send the files to pannenkoek2012 so he can analyze the game's code and find out what the hell is going on. Keep in mind that the expert himself hasn't been able to recreate it.

On the other hand, it's also just a great excuse to play Mario 64 again.