A 100 per cent world record dash through Jonathan Blow’s The Witness has been recorded by speedrunner FearfulFerret at three hours, 16 minutes, and 21 seconds as reported by Eurogamer. The time includes a 56-minute break in which he leaves his apartment, drives to a restaurant, grabs a fish sandwich, and returns to continue playing – all while still on the clock.
There are spoilers below.
You might be wondering why someone attempting to perform a world record would do this and the reason is simple: one of the game’s most obscure puzzles necessitates a 56-minute wait to solve.
One of The Witness’s more sophisticated puzzle types is a set of secrets which integrate its a “trace-the-line” interface into the game’s scenery, which means players need to look at the game in a certain way. The Batman Arkham games did something similar with the Riddler trophies dotted across Gotham.
Among these hidden tracing opportunities is a 58-minute movie players are able to unlock in a subterranean movie theater. The film was inspired by a GDC talk called The Secret of Psalm 46, which was delivered by Loom and Wishbringer developer Brian Moriarty. In it, Moriarty tells the story of a hidden jewel an eclipse slowly passes over the screen as the presentation continues. Line the full moon up with one of the borders and you can begin tracing a line. You then need to wait for 56 minutes until the edge of the eclipse provides a smooth surface on which you can finish the line.
FearfulFerret begins drawing the line at the 16:39 mark and completes it at 1:12:10. Even though his playthrough has plenty of mistakes, it’s still a world record.