How to Score Highest in Ocarina of Time's Horseback Archery Minigame (Wii Virtual Console, N64)
The archery minigame in Ocarina of Time is the biggest test of skill in a 3D Zelda game, except for the Cave of Ordeals in Twilight Princess. Here's how to do well in the archery game.
To most people, the best minigame of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is the horseback archery range in Gerudo Valley. This is where you can get a Piece of Heart and a quiver upgrade, enabling you to hold 40 arrows instead of the normal 30. It's considered a mark of achievement amongst players to try getting a perfect score in the archery range in Ocarina of Time. This is easier said than done -- unless, of course, you know the pattern and how to predict where Link's arrows will hit the target.
Since you're moving on Epona, your aim is going to be just a little off, meaning your arrows are going to strike the target forward of where they actually were aimed; conservation of motion applies. So, if you've figured out how to manually aim the bow, you can just adjust slightly.
Now, the targets are lined up in two lines facing one another either side of the range, in rows of three. Also, there are two targets situated on higher poles. In front of each target in the rows, there is a crate with a jar on top. If you can hit these jars, you get 100 points, just as if you got a bulls-eye on a normal target. What I like to do is get an arrow out, aim at the first pot in line, shoot it, and then shoot the other two. After this, I line up my arrow with the center of the targets. I shoot two arrows into each, three if I can manage it. Then, I turn to face the end pole, putting a shot there. By this time, I've usually run halfway through my supply of 20 arrows.
Now, I repeat the process on the other side, this time to the left, and this time I have plenty of space to use the last remaining arrows on the other end pole. I'm consistently able to get at least 1600 or 1700 points this way, sometimes up to a perfect score, 2000. These are the best ways I've found to be good in the Ocarina of Time horseback archery minigame.