Tool-assisted game movies
When human skills are just not enough

Submission #1321: Samhain-Grim's NES Akumajou Densetsu "Grant path" in 30:56.7

Console: Nintendo Entertainment System
Game name: Akumajou Densetsu
Game version: Japan
ROM filename: Akumajou_Densetsu_(J).nes
Branch: Grant path
Emulator: (unknown)
Movie length: 30:56.7
FrameCount: 111402
Re-record count: 18398
Author's real name: MSM
Author's nickname: Samhain-Grim
Submitter: VANDAL
Submitted at: 2006-10-22 07:38:26
Text last edited at: 2006-10-22 07:38:24
Text last edited by: Bisqwit
Download: Download (4628 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:
Emulator Used: FCE Ultra 0.98.16

Well like I said some time earlier this year, I've revised the Castlevania 3: Grant Path and it's nearly 30 seconds faster! I've found newer tricks and techniques (ones I'll explain later in the submission text) that help speed this run up. I'm not quite satisfied with this run yet; I know it can be pushed just a bit further. The biggest reason for that statement is because of late findings (that will be in the next run) and unwillingness to start over. With that out of the way, I'll explain some of what I did throughout the run.

In the first level, it is necessary to get five extra hearts to help speed through it, by this I get some hearts from enemies and candles. With those hearts I use the 'Stop Clock' twice on two different occasions, during process of the level and in the boss fight. There is a trick that StormEagle found out about that allowed you to cancel long drops delaying animation so it was pretty useful. I also manipulate getting the 'Stop Clock' from an enemy. In the boss fight with the Skeleton I use the 'Stop Clock' to, if I remember correctly, slow the boss down and in doing so I strike it on the very first possible frame (last possible frame for the whip's physical animation) and follow up by striking again and again on the first possible frames. You'll see I use turbo but it doesn't matter, the whip still gets used on the first possible frames as long as lag isn't apparent. Also with turbo it changes the bosses behavior; It doesn't get a chance to strike me.

In the Second Level (counts as going up and going down, in my opinion), I need only three hearts to defeat the boss easily (this boss fight can be beaten even faster but because of the late findings, I was unwilling to start over and by late findings I mean I was really far into the run when I discovered them.) but I do collect a couple to help clear a path while using the 'Holy Water'. I found a shortcut where the pendulums are (not really a shortcut) in which I'm able to jump on the first one immediately, how could I have missed that before? You'll see I defeat the Possessed Grant even quicker than before.

On the way down with Grant I do the usual only faster. I get rid of my hearts except for one since I use it later on in a useful place. I cancel the delaying animation with the throwing of a dagger in quite a few places. That pretty much sums up this segment.

In the third level, I walk much further with Grant, until I change, than the other run this time around. I tried not to jump as much as last time but still get similar results (otherwise I won't get the II when I usually get it). With Grant, I cancel out the lag, with a newly found trick which allows you to use your weapon (doesn't work with Trevor's weapon though but it does work with his sub weapon) or sub weapon without the animation of it which saves frames that add up (I use this trick a lot), by eliminating the enemies. The boss fight could have been faster but because of the late findings and unwillingness it is still not quite optimal (optimal in the sense that, say, if this trick didn't exist, it would be).

In the fourth level, I progress like in the other run only more optimal with the newly discovered trick being used when possible (there is an even faster way of using it which I'll explain later how). I am able to destroy Medusa with Trevor even faster because of the newly found trick. The Mummies are taken out much quicker in this run. The Cyclops could have been improved but because of the late findings and unwillingness blah, blah, blah! You get the picture.

In the fifth level, I go accordingly as the other run but before I missed a shortcut because I was trying to be a stairmaster; I am able to jump and climb up at a spot that I didn't realize I could. I do different things in the area that auto-scrolls upward, for entertainment's sake. Frankenstein goes down quicker witht the newly found trick and is pretty damn optimal.

In the sixth level, it is more optimized with timely jumping and better enemy behavior manipulation. The boss fight with the Hydras?! can be a little more optimal but because of the late find... and unwill...

In the seventh level, I do pretty much everything I did in the previous run only more optimal and cool! There is an area in the level if you do it too fast a platform won't be apparently there so I waste one frame in order to have present otherwise I cannot complete the level. The boss fight with the Mummies is optimal, they just have a hell of a lot more life this time around. The Cyclops can be beaten faster but because of the lat... and unwi... The big red demon has the most life and endurance out of pretty much every boss in the game so I devised the best possible strategy I could think up and I think it works pretty well.

In the eighth level, we finally enter the castle of Castlevania. This level can be optimized further but because of the... and... The boss fight with Death is optimal in my opinion, both segments (the 'Holy Cross' doesn't hit Death's second form, it just bounces off and wastes hearts, so I just strike the hell out of him).

In the ninth level, I progress mostly like the other run does but a little better this time, more entertaining in my opinion (and less annoying). The Boss fight, The Doppleganger, is for the most part optimal.

In the tenth and final level, I get most of my hearts from the Medusa heads in the area that auto-scrolls downward which is always fun to watch (sorry I wasn't able to kill 'em all but you'll understand why). I changed the route a little by getting hit less (which if I knew any better I would have left it the same, oh well) and tinkering with the newly found trick's usefulness. The boss fights with Dracula are pretty optimal I'd say, there may be a few variations in his second form that I can't see but I believe it's optimal.

That's pretty much it (pretty hollow isn't this text). Now I'll explain the late findings/tricks used.

To bypass the 'delaying animation' that comes from a long fall you have to strike your weapon on the correct frame in which your weapon striking animation ends as you hit the ground, you'll see I do this quite a few times throughout the run. All credit for this finding goes to a user, on this board, known as StormEagle so I'd like to thank them and give them their credit.

To do the 'newly found trick' you have to strike your weapon or sub-weapon on the frame before you touchdown on the ground (yes, you have to have jumped or walked off an edge in order to do it).

To do the 'newly found trick' alternately (with Grant as far as I know) you first duck (no need to jump or walk over an edge) and one frame after you let go of down you strike your weapon/sub-weapon. This one is faster and should have been used when necessary/possible. This one doesn't work with Trevor because instead of trying to use his sub-weapon he tries to use his whip which doesn't show up visually and physically.

Regarding to this run, there are a few occurances where optimizations can be made but not until the next version. I hope you enjoy this run because it was fun to make again and you'll see I have learned a thing or two about TASing. I'd like to over-thank StormEagle again for the cool trick that works probably in the other Castlevanias, I know it works in the first one. This is it, expect some time unexpectedly for another run of this game/path which is optimized to hell!

Phil: For those who are confused like me, Samhain-Grim is Vandal.
Bisqwit: Accepting as an improvement. (And processing)

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