When I first watched the currently published run of jaws, I was surprised. To me it was the poorest quality run on this site in both entertainment and technical value. This was particularly emphasized when the run was bested by a console performance recently.
I thought that a good contribution to this site would be to take the poorest run and take it up a notch. And that is what I did here with my 2555 frame (42.6 sec) improvement.
Time was saved in every area of the game, particularly because the previous author seemed to not fully omptimize anything. 69 frames were saved from pressing start sooner at the title screen for instance. Enemies were killed as soon as possible and the bonus screen was improved by the use of the left & right to make the airplane travel faster.
The strategy is the same: 2 encounters + bonus scene. Get 30,000pts & 13 conk shells along the way. Power up to level 2 & get the submarine. Kills Jaws. This is the only fast strategy possible, here is why:
1) Jaws has 5120 HP and an invulnerability period between hits of 24 frames. Your normal power level 1 harpoon does 8 damage. Raising your power meter doubles your damage. So at power level 3 you will do 32 damage. To do this you need 13 conk shells. 5 to get the receiver (required before leveling up). 3 for level 1 & 5 for level 2. It is not possible to manipulate luck to do this in one "random" encounter.
2) The bombs do 2x what a harpoon will do at each level. The ship cannot be kept, as you can not avoid getting hit by jaws. The submarine allows you to continue to throw bombs without the ship. This saved mega-time compared to the time it takes to get it. Getting the submarine required 30,000 pts.
3) While I use a jaws encounter as my "2nd encounter", hitting him is pointless. He regenerates more hp between the encounter than I could inflict upon him. The first encounter with jaws serves two purposes: a) ensure that I get two encounters before powering up, b) To score extra points by shooting him. This helps me get to the 30,000 goal.
4) You must do the bonus scene after the second encounter. And the 2nd encounter is necessary to get the shells & points. Far more time would be lost trying to find jaws under-equipped than the time it takes to do these scenes.
Luck manipulation sucks in this game, nuff said.
At times something will be manipulable, at others the same thing will be NOT RANDOM AT ALL! This required me to redo large chunks of this run many times due to bad luck in the encounters & with random drops.
Encounters are weird in this game. You can SOMETIMES avoid them by pausing just before the square that you would have had it on. If you avoid it, you avoid that encounter completely and the game sets up the 2nd encounter. After 3 encounters, you get a very large span of no encounters, giving you plenty of time to go back and forth powering up. So the best strategy is to manipulate 1 of the 3 away and do the other two. Or, in my case, manipulate away 2, fight one, and run into jaws. This way is not necessarily slower or faster but "safer". As mentioned before. The way you play an encounter will help determine if the next one can be skipped.
That is about all I can think of. This game basically sucks to TAS. You have little to no control over seemingly random events. I don't doubt that it is theoretically possible to improve this run significantly, but I pity the soul who dares to try.
- Aims for fastest time
- Uses FCEU .16
- Manipulates luck
- Plays a crappy game
: Accepting as an improvement to the current movie. More explanation in the submission text would still be appreciated, since I guess you have had time to rest since 10 days ago. :)
: Submission info added, and publication underway.