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

Submission #1516: zidanax's SNES Hook in 14:27.98

Console: Super NES
Game name: Hook
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Hook (U) (2648)
Emulator: (unknown)
Movie length: 14:27.98
FrameCount: 52079
Re-record count: 11742
Author's real name: Timothy Goman
Author's nickname: zidanax
Submitter: zidanax
Submitted at: 2007-04-09 18:41:13
Text last edited at: 2007-05-20 23:29:14
Text last edited by: adelikat
Download: Download (3039 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:
Emulator: Snes9x 1.43+ Improvement v9

Settings: Use WIP1 Timing

NOTE: The ROM used in this TAS is different from the previous one, which used Hook (U) (29252). Hook (U) (29252) is now considered a beta in NSRT--Overload and I dumped our US Hook carts and both got Hook (U) (2648), which is used in this run. I only noticed one time saver that was obviously due to ROM differences: in level 4, after killing the boss, the screen starts scrolling to the right 70 frames faster than in the beta.

This TAS saves 2726 frames off hero of the day's run.

Hook is a somewhat slow platformer game based off the movie of the same name. Peter Pan has grown up, and is now a successful lawyer named Peter Banning. His children, Jack and Maggie, are kidnapped by the pirate Hook. The fairy Tinkerbell transports Peter to Neverland, where he has to go through 10 levels to save his children. Note that I think the current movie description is fine, especially since I do more flying than hero of the day did.

General Timesavers

In the case of these being used, I won't bother to mention them in the level-by-level breakdown.

  • I try to use flying a lot more than in the previous run, because flying is somewhat faster than running.
  • I minimize hovering while collecting pixie dust, because Peter Pan collects pixie dust slower if he is in a flying state. In cases where I can't simply stand on the ground, and for some reason jumping wouldn't work well, I switch in and out of a flying state. This is to take advantage of the fact that after switching out of a flying state, Peter Pan's falling speed is very slow at first. This way I can still spend most of my time collecting pixie dust at the faster non-flying rate.
  • The less life Peter Pan has at the end of a stage, the less time it takes to tally up the score. So I try to reduce my life to the minimum by the end of levels if I don't lose too much time as a result.
  • When Peter Pan attacks on the ground, jumps, or falls off a ledge, there is a slight delay in forward movement. So I try to minimize the number of times these actions are executed.
  • Greater precision
  • I used the same pause trick as hero of the day to start running without doing a sword slash, although I was occasionally able to execute it faster.
  • Occasionally was able to hit the bosses slightly faster
  • Occasionally was able to get into Peter Pan's end-of-level pose faster.
  • Sometimes the levels have sloped floors that are steep enough to either make Peter Pan slower or faster than usual. I try to run along the downward slopes as much as possible, and go around/jump over upward slopes.

Level 1

  • Instead of doing "walking jumps" up the cliff that comes after the lake, I do "running jumps", making sure to release the B button when I'm high enough, so that I don't bump into the cliff.

Level 2

  • Went through the section just before the boss faster. My best attempt at this section didn't execute the bare minimum of jumps/attacks, but instead kept the number of enemies relatively small, so I suspect there may be some lag here due to the large number of enemies onscreen.

Level 3

  • A new strategy for the first part of this level that saves some time and doesn't involve getting hit like hero of the day's strategy. This is good, because there are two timesavers later in the level that involve getting hit, and getting hit three times in this level would've killed Peter Pan.

Level 4

  • Normally, Peter Pan can't manage a running jump off the small platforms in the section of this level after the first tiger. However, if Peter Pan lands on the left edge of a platform from a jump, he can barely manage a running jump. This is used shortly after the second pixie dust collection point.

Level 5

  • Instead of killing the 2nd fish, I go around it
  • New trick to get past some of the falling icicles faster. If Peter Pan goes into a crouch while running, he will "slide" while in the crouching position. There is a window of a few frames where doing this "crouch slide" while running under an icicle will cause Peter Pan to not get hit by the icicle.

Level 6

  • When I get hit by the pirate at the bottom of the switchbacks just before the boss, I turn around just before I get hit so that I'm launched forward instead of backward.

Level 8

  • A rather... interesting level to TAS. Normally you would wait for the will o' the wisp to keep up with you so that you can actually see where you're going. Of course, I couldn't do that since this is a TAS. So I took the time to make a map of the level from putting together screenshots.
http://img204.imageshack.us/img204/383/hooktestuu1.png This was immensely helpful in keeping track of where I was in the level and planning a route.
  • It turns out you can fly through the platforms with stalactites. This saves an enormous amount of time.
  • When coming up to sections where falling speed makes a difference to how fast I go through the level, I jump so that by the time I'm over the pit, I'm already falling relatively fast.

Level 9

  • Boss time savings in this level too, but I'm bothering to mention it because the savings were quite substantial in comparison to the other bosses. It's quite difficult to hit this boss as quickly as possible after he recovers from a hit, but I was able to improve on hero of the day's attempt by quite a bit.

Level 10

  • A different strategy in the second room of this level where I get hit by the spikes instead of the barrel-thrower.

There may be other small time savers I forgot, but these are the substantial ones.

Suggested screenshot (if it's decided that it should be changed): Anything from the section of level 6 where Peter Pan is being chased by a giant snowball. Perhaps frame 23586?

Special Thanks

stickyman05 - For his encouragement, and tips that led to time savings.

ZeXr0 - For the suggestion on how to improve level 1. It didn't directly lead to an improved time, but it did inspire me to look a little closer at how to go through the relevant section of the level, resulting in some frames saved.

And especially... hero of the day - His TAS was invaluable in making my own TAS. I had something to compare my own run against, and I picked up some strategies from his TAS. *Bows at hero of the day*.

Everybody else that made comments or suggestions about my WIPs.

Truncated: Accepted as an improvement to the current run.

adelikat: Processing. Seems I am unable to record .avi's in SNES9x. Someone else will have to handle this one.

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