TASVideos

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

Submission #1670: upthorn's Genesis Rocket Knight Adventures in 27:18.13

Console: Sega Genesis
Game name: Rocket Knight Adventures
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Rocket Knight Adventures (U) [!].bin
Branch:
Emulator: (unknown)
Movie length: 27:18.13
FrameCount: 98288
Re-record count: 23360
Author's real name: Jody Northup
Author's nickname: upthorn
Submitter: upthorn
Submitted at: 2007-08-21 11:00:05
Text last edited at: 2007-09-15 20:19:01
Text last edited by: upthorn
Download: Download (10855 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:

Emulator used: Gens 9.5 RKA_HitboxDisplayHack (Gens 9* compatible)

Emulator settings:

  • Controller 1: 6 button
  • Controller 2: 6 button
  • Allow Up+Down: Yes
  • Sound: Enabled, 44100KhZ Stereo, YM2612 High Quality enabled

Categories

  • Does not use warps or passwords
  • Abuses programming errors in the game
  • Manipulates luck
  • Takes no damage
  • Plays on hardest difficulty
  • Ignores time lost to bonus effects

About the Game

Rocket Knight Adventures is one of the better platformers on Sega Genesis. In it, you control Sparkster, an opossum with a sword and a jetpack, in his quest to defeat the evil pig empire.

About the Movie

This movie uses the US version of Rocket Knight Adventures. This movie makes extensive use of a few programming glitches to maintain full speed as much as possible. This movie manipulates luck to prevent bosses from using their longer attacks. This movie takes no damage. This movie ignores time loss due to bonus effects. This movie plays on the hardest difficulty.

This movie is on a different ROM version from the previous run due to the following reasons:

  • Previous movie was on a PAL version, but was not PAL optimized, so is slower and less entertaining
  • US Version has a more difficult Hard Mode.
  • The US Version is the most likely version to be familiar to viewers.
  • Deep Loner began an improvement run on the US version, and I wanted to be able to make direct comparisons.

This movie aims for fastest time.

Suggested Screenshot

Improvement Explanations

Velocity control

  • Sparkster cannot maintain maximum speed when on the ground, instead, if you hold right, his speed will alternate between 3px/frame and 2.75px/frame
  • In the air, Sparkster accelerates at the same rate as on, ground and his maximum speed when holding right is the higher of 3px/frame and the speed you had when you jumped.
  • Sparkster is able to jump immediately at the start of a new room or new level if the jump button is pressed at the right frame beforehand.
  • If Sparkster starts a horizontal rocket boost in mid-air, half of his speed will be lost immediately when it ends.
  • Half of Sparkster's speed will always be lost immediately when diagonal boosts end.
  • Better optimized diagonal boosts used in wall climbing, and navigating bumpy terrain.
  • Better optimized use of horizontal boosts.
  • Made use of jumping before ledges to save time on long falls.
  • Optimized swimming for least wasted movement, and best possible boost locations.
  • In normal levels, directional controls are disabled during sword swipes

Combat optimizations

  • Hitbox display allows better optimization of timing and placement of sword-swings
  • The damage box on a sword swipes moves from top-rear of the player to mid-low forward of the player -- in order to connect with a single target for the full length of the swipe, you or the target must be moving.
  • Sword swipes last 8 frames, and do 4 damage each frame to enemies within the area.
  • The crescent slash produced by a sword swing causes 12 damage when it impacts a target, and can damage multiple targets if it connects on the same frame
  • Orthogonal (up/down/left/right) boost charges cause 32 damage upon impact, and initiate a circular boost for the remainder of the boost time.
  • Diagonal (up-left/up-right/down-left/down-right) boost charges cause 16 damage upon impact, and initiate a circular boost for the remainder of the boost time
  • Circular (no-direction held) boost charges cause 1 damage per frame.
  • The jetpack can be charged for a charge boost while slashing continuously by releasing the attack button only for one frame between swipes.
  • With one exception, enemies that flash cause lag each time they take damage
  • Enemies with HP will continue to take damage, even while flashing
  • Enemies that are Hit-based will not take damage while flashing, but will still cause lag when hit.
  • Unlike the prior movie, I do not attack any lag-causing before they become vulnerable

Luck improvements

  • Manipulated the starting position of the Tank Turret to a most optimal one.
  • Manipulated Axle Gear And His Giant Pig Mech to walk backwards as little as possible
  • Manipulated Pig Heads in stage 6 to always drop a row of apples
  • Manipulated Axle Gear to use only the attack pattern that causes him to be vulnerable.

Level specific notes

Stage 1-1

  • This level was really amenable to bunny hopping - only one obstacle that can't be jumped over, and no ceilings limiting when and how you can jump to do so.
  • The trucks were kind of a pain, after they pass by in the background, they always reappear in the foreground a specific number of pixels off screen, so hitting them as early as possible requires travelling the same way as them, and then immediately changing direction. I think I did a pretty good job optimizing their destruction, though. Each of the two trucks has 8 hit points more than they did in the prior published version, by the way.
  • You're not supposed to be able to jump over the wall after the trucks, but if you have enough speed at the top of the rise before it, you can just barely make it.
  • Keeping speed was a challenge in the area where the pigs parachute in, because I'm actually travelling faster than the crescent slice the sword shoots out. But it's important not to have to rocketboost too early on the hills after, because otherwise I'll hit the hill sideways while jumping and loose all my speed.
  • The downward sloping branches provide a nice speed boost.
  • Unfortunately I have to lose all my built up speed to deal with the four unskippable walkers. Each of these walkers has 8 more hitpoints than they did in the prior published version, by the way.
  • The walkers were also a challenge to optimize, as they appear in different places depending on the player's location, and the third and fourth will only appear after the defeat of the first two.
  • The four unskippable pigs are defeated much more quickly than in the prior version, by swinging the sword just before they become vulnerable, so the projectile passes through the near left one (which catches the tail end of the swipe) and hits the far left one. The sword swipe ends just as I have enough charge built up to boost and catch the two pigs on the right.
  • The tank is defeated as quickly as possible here. Each time it recieves damage on the first frame that its invulnerability wears off.
  • After the bridge goes out, the tank turret's x and y position depend on sparkster's position at the time it appears. I use rocket boosts to damage it while it's still offscreen, but I had to be very careful to hit it on the trailing edge, as I did not want to change its direction because the top right corner was the most desirable place for it to come on camera.

Stage 1-2

  • Slight timesaver by boosting downward as soon as I'm lined up with the rocket item.
  • The positions of the balloons can be manipulated by changing the timing of my sword swipes, but there's enough of a delay in between that they can appear at any point and I would still be able to kill them on the first frame.
  • These balloons will all appear with the same delay in between them no matter what, but the dragon won't appear until the last balloon is offscreen. The balloons travel much faster offscreen when they are crashing after being hit.
  • The ending sequence won't happen until its head is offscreen, this can be expedited by delaying the last hit for a couple of frames so that it explodes in a different pattern.

Stage 1-3

  • I wait a bit before moving right so that my boost ends before I reach the flames on the floor, so I don't die in a fire, and can clear the first bump in the floor.
  • I boost diagonally the first moment that doing so allows me to reach the higher floor
  • Only a small part of these flame bursts can damage sparkster, and sparkster is invincible during rocket boosts
  • By boosting at the proper frame, I am able to save a frame in reaching the doorway.
  • This is the first place where the "start by jumping" trick comes in handy. It allows me to reach a good height for rocket boosting even before the screen fades back in.
  • I fall a bit before starting the third rocket boost, so that the boost ends before I overshoot the door. I still begin the boost at the first possible frame.
  • The next room is not very noteworthy. a slight bit of hopping, and slightly better boosts than the prior version.
  • I save several frames in the last room before the boss by boosting left before falling down. The boost bounces off the walls and flings me towards the door at high speed, while not significantly impacting my rate of fall.
  • This boss is the first place I lose any gameplay frames to the prior version. I have to hit the boss three extra times compared to the previous run, and it has a significant invulnerability period between hits.

Stage 2-1

  • The "start by jumping" trick saves quite a bit of time, as it actually allows me to reach the mini boss before I hit the water.
  • I'm not sure if this is the optimal boss strategy, but I do maximize sword contact on the swipes.
  • I save a great deal of time in the swimming portion by diagonally boosting as high as possible.
This is faster than boosting horizontally, because I maintain a speed of 4 pixels per frame for much longer than it is possible to maintain the horizontal boost falling speed of 5 pixels per frame.
  • The diagonal boost strategy also allows me to reach the tree vine much sooner than the previous run does.
  • I try to maximize speed gain from the sloping vines.
  • The rotating platforms that bring me behind the waterfall are always in the same position when you reach them.
  • I touch the platform which switches me in front of the water fall because I need the next platform to take me behind when I land on it.
  • At some point during the fight with the water snake, I somehow trigger a bug which allows me to hit it from the other side of the waterfall. I don't know what causes this, but I do know it saves quite a bit of time, as I need to be in front of the waterfall after the boss is destroyed.

Stage 2-2

  • In NTSC versions of the game, this first room lags for the entire time I'm underwater, because there are so many moving spiked things to keep track of.
  • Boosting upward as soon as possible, after swimming past the downward column saves more time than it takes to recharge the pack to boost diagonally past the next upward column.
  • The second room is slightly tricky to time the boost so I don't hit any of the spikes balls that make up the ceiling

Stage 2-3

  • This stage is primarily an autoscroller, but it can be prolonged by not defeating the last pig in the first set as soon as possible.
  • When hopping between mine carts, momentum preservation techniques are important to make sure you get to the next fast cart as soon as possible.
  • The second set of pigs takes the same amount of time no matter what, so I chose to let the last four pigs survive until the game kills them, as it looks funny that way.
  • Although the prior version also attacked the train non-stop, I improve this by getting as close to it as possible, in order to maximize sword contact. This saves a large amount of time. Also, the left+right glitch allows me to swing the sword left, while I'm moving right. Which saves quite a bit of time as I have to be constantly moving a little to the right so the train doesn't hit me and kill me.
  • It is possible to do one or two damage to the hand during the first stage of the boss, but it doesn't carry over to the second phase, and even if it did, it would cause more lag than it's worth.
  • The second phase is defeated as soon as (hand 1 HP + hand 2 HP) < 0. Discovering this saved me quite a bit of time as I could just boost into Hand 1 to lower its hp more, rather than going back to Hand 2 to finish it off.
  • The third phase is a little different from the first. I have to be moving left constantly to keep from getting hit, but I can't move left and swing right unless I'm in the air, so I have to keep jumping. Unfortunately even the lowest jump I can make takes me to a height where I won't hit it with the crescent projectile if I swing. Fortunately, though, by hitting jump and attack at the same time, I can shoot the projectile without having to swipe, which lets me get an extra 12 damage in, quickly.

Stage 3-1

  • I start by moving left so that I'll be able to clear the first bump when I jump after the boost ends. This lets me carry high speed quite far into the level.
  • The lava won't hurt me while I'm boosting, and I can jump the first frame I finish boosting to take no damage. This helps save time as I don't have to wait for the lava to rise and fall to get through a section with low platforms. (Note: This is not true of the fires in stage 1-3, the lava in later levels, or the large spikes in stage 5-6)
  • I did my best at carrying speed through the platforms hidden behind crystals, but I have to boost in midair on my way down in order to get past low platforms during a high lava tide faster

Stage 3-2

  • I make some much better diagonal and horizontal boosts compared to the previous version, so I never have to stop moving right.
  • The crab boss' HP is reduced to 1/4 of its current value when the large claw is defeated. The HP is reduced to 1/2 of its current value when the small claw is defeated. Its HP begins at 50. After defeating the large claw, it becomes 12. After defeating both claws it becomes 6. But it is faster to go through 6 invulnerability periods than to destroy both claws.
  • Also, the prior run wasted time damaging the boss before destroying either claw, and at least two damage must be done for the total HP after a claw is destroyed to be lowered

Stage 3-3

  • This is basically an autoscroller, but the game lags by 8 frames each time a bat is hit. So I don't hit any of the bats.

Stage 3-4

  • NTSC versions of the game lag by increasingly high amounts during the part of the fish boss where it sucks in platforms. PAL versions do not.
  • My strategy of attacking the piloting pig is slightly more optimal than the prior run's. I suspect that it is not totally optimal, but brute forcing it isn't viable, and I suspect that properly figuring out the most optimal strategy involves calculus that I haven't learned yet.

Stage 4-1

  • Because the only way to damage Captain Fleagle is to bounce his own cannon-balls back at him, and he stops throwing them for a moment whenever he is hit, I have attempted to minimize the time between the cannonballs impacting him on each cycle.
  • I also have made sure that no cannonball he throws at me does not hit him.

Stage 4-2

  • The first part of this stage was quite frustrating to improve, as the wind makes it impossible to keep speed from a rocket boost, but I saved a little bit of time by boosting through Captain Fleagle in such a way that I land on the nose of the battle ship afterward
  • Going back to the left underneath was much easier to improve, as I could make use of momentum preservation, and came up with a much faster strategy for the mini-boss

Stage 4-3

  • I preserve speed here as much as possible, but the forcefields are confounding. It is possible to manipulate them, but I am not sure what the mechanism for determining when they turn off is. There is more than likely a possible improvement here.

Stage 4-4

  • Not a whole lot to say. I attack the giant slinky pig, and Captain Fleagle much more optimally than the previous version.

Stage 5-1

  • The missiles appear only after the last pig is defeated (or otherwise offscreen), but as in stage 1-2, the pigs appear at set intervals from each other. Also as in stage 1-2 their positions can be manipulated, but also as in Stage 1-2, the manipulation is unnecessary.
  • It's the boss from gradius!! I lose a lot of time here, though, because attacking it optimally requires taking damage, which I can't do.

Stage 5-2

  • Momentum preservation wins the day once more.
  • Momentum preservation, but vertically this time.

Stage 5-3

  • Better timing of diagonal boosts allows me to get through the bumps and dips faster

Stage 5-4

  • I take out the supporting pillar a couple frames sooner
  • I start the diagonal boost at the first frame where I'll actually be let in between the ceiling and the top floor from it.

Stage 5-5

  • I stop the platform's downward motion at the highest point where ducking will let me pass under the wall.
  • I jump at the first point where the wall ejects me rightward, but not down. This saves 44 frames.
  • A few more frames are saved by boosting sooner, and jumping from a higher platform

Stage 5-6

  • I start the diagonal boost sooner, and carry momentum to the exit by hopping.

Stage 5-7

  • I get to the giant robot boxing match faster, but it doesn't matter because I have to make 3 more hits on the Axle Gear's giant pig robot, and there's a significant delay between hits being possible to land
  • I also cannot take the damage necessary to land the final hit at the first possible frame, so I have to get in to make him start swinging, dodge out to avoid being hit, and then dodge back in so that he's within punching distance.

Stage 6

  • Wave 1: I'm able to defeat each set of 5 pig heads in a single swipe, by killing the master head before it generates the rest. I also collect the apple as soon as possible so the next set appears sooner.
  • Wave 2: I defeat this set of 8 pigheads quickly by making sure each swipe kills two. I then collect the apples as quickly as possible so that wave 3 will appear.
  • Wave 3: I am not sure if the number of asteroids onscreen influences anything, but I made it a minor goal to hit every asteroid in this wave at least once.
  • Wave 3: What does matter, though, is killing the false asteroids as soon as possible, as the next one won't appear until a certain time after the current one is defeated. Similarly, the next wave only appears once the last false asteroid is blown up.
  • Wave 4: You can't see it, but this wave consists of a bunch of pig heads moving in a circle. Only one needs to be killed for the wave to end, but killing the wrong head (or the right head at the wrong time?) causes a repeat of Wave 2 before the next wave comes, whereas killing the right head causes 6 apples to appear.
  • Wave 4: The next wave won't appear until all the apples are cleared. I collect all 6 apples before they reach the center of the screen, the prior run was only able to collect 4, and had to wait for the rest to move off the screen of their own accord
  • Wave 5: This weird guy can't be damages while he's holding his shield out to the left of him. But once he's dropped it I make quick work of him by maximizing each swing's connect time. The prior run didn't defeat him until in his third cycle, despite him having less HP in that version.
  • Wave 6: This is a repeat of wave 4.
  • Wave 7: Most of the pig astronauts don't even make it onto the screen before dying.
  • Wave 7: Axle Gear isn't vulnerable until after he's left the screen after firing the huge energe beam. The previous run just caused a whole bunch of avoidable lag by attacking him while he's firing the beam.
  • Wave 7: When Axle Gear does become vulnerable, I reduce his HP by 84 before he even makes it on screen. Unfortunately this delays killing the last two pig astronauts a bit, and there may be a possible improvement along those lines.
  • Wave 8: This is a repeat of wave 4 again.
  • Boss 1: This boss is composed of a whole bunch of separate objects with at least 120 HP each. All four turrets must be destroyed before the hatch becomes vulnerable. The hatch must be destroyed before the nose becomes vulnerable.
  • Boss 1: The nose's underbelly is the only multihit-enemy in the game that does not cause lag when it takes damage.
  • Boss 1: I have to hit the front of the nose once so that I can get in and hit the separation point without dying. This may look like a wasted swing, but if not for that, I would die upon entering that hitbox.
  • Boss 2: This is the most annoying boss in the entire game. He has a 19.5 second cycle between becoming vulnerable, and I have to get one more hit in on him than the prior run did.

Stage 7-1

  • Arrive at Emperor Devligus Devotindos earlier than the prior run, thanks to momentum preservation.
  • Emperor Devotindos is only vulnerable to rocket boosts, but I still manage a faster battle due to using straight boosts, rather than diagonal ones.

Stage 7-2

  • I get through this area full of Emperor Devotindos prototypes faster by better momentum control.

Stage 7-3

  • I enjoy totally outclassing Axle Gear
  • If Sparkster is facing Axle Gear when he stops flashing from taking damage, he'll perform a different attack which significantly prolongs his invulnerability. In order to hit him the first possible frame each time, I must jump, shoot the crescent projectile on the way down, and change facing direction for 2 frames as soon as I land.
  • Axle Gear also backs up by 1 or 2 pixels each time he is hit, I have to creep forward or eventually my crescent projectile will only be able tohit his crescent projectile, and not him as well.
  • I defeat Axle Gear's second stage much more quickly through better use of boosting, maximizing sword contact, and using two tricks that allow me to fire a projectile without making a full swipe (when I jump, and when I land).

Stage 7-4

  • I lose time here because I have wait to hit one of the emperor prototypes and boost through it, rather than taking damage.

Stage 7-5

  • I saved a few frames by timing my boosts and jumps better.

Final Boss

  • I lose time here because each of this boss's stages has 1 extra hit point, there's no quicker vulnerability cycle to manipulate, and the prior run never allowed the boss to be vulnerable for more than 2 frames before hitting it.
  • I like to think I was at least more entertaining during the wait time than the prior run, though.

Escape Pod

  • Saved a couple frames over the prior run by momentum preservation after boost

Reentry

  • I can't take damage, and I can't attack the Pig Star core in any way, so I tried to mock it by mimicking it's movements. It didn't work as well as I hoped, but better than just dodging for a couple minutes with minimum movement.

Comparison Table

Level Start End Old Start Old End Input Length Old Input Length Lag Length Old Lag Length Level Savings Level Loss Total Savings Total Loss
Menu 0 589 0 574 339 369 250 205 30 45 30 45
Stage 1 Cutscene 589 793 574 767 102 104 102 89 2 33 32 78
Stage 1-1 793 4347 767 5415 3246 4354 308 279 1125 *45 1157 123
Stage 1-2 4347 6776 5415 7869 2279 2313 150 141 34 9 1191 132
Stage 1-3 6776 11493 7869 12756 4393 4707 324 180 +458 +321 1963 453
Score Tally 1 11493 12532 12757 13783 962 962 77 64 0 13 1963 466
Stage 2 Cutscene 12532 12688 13783 13929 51 146 105 93 95 12 2058 478
Stage 2-1 12688 15113 13929 17249 2167 3072 258 248 *921 *26 2979 504
Stage 2-2 15113 16007 17249 18300 538 960 356 91 422 265 3401 769
Stage 2-3 16007 24753 18300 27315 8091 8320 655 695 *149 *40 3550 809
Score Tally 2 24753 25743 27315 28304 962 962 28 27 0 1 3550 810
Stage 3 Cutscene 25743 25823 28304 28375 17 18 63 53 1 10 3551 820
Stage 3-1 25823 26487 28375 29186 589 749 75 62 160 13 3711 833
Stage 3-2 26487 29114 29186 33007 2178 3264 449 557 1086 -108 4797 725
Stage 3-3 29114 31473 33007 35393 2269 2295 90 91 26 -1 4823 724
Stage 3-4 31473 33800 35393 37619 2055 2145 272 81 *98 *199 4511 923
Score Tally 3 33800 34816 37619 38630 963 965 53 46 2 9 4513 932
Stage 4 Cutscene 34816 35181 38630 38970 184 187 181 153 3 28 4516 960
Stage 4-1 35181 36642 38970 40463 1374 1418 87 75 44 12 4560 972
Stage 4-2 36642 39061 40463 43375 2225 2766 194 146 541 56 5101 1028
Stage 4-3 39061 39698 43375 44029 562 590 75 64 *36 *19 5137 1064
Stage 4-4 39698 42078 44029 46674 2231 2480 149 165 257 *-8 5394 1056
Score Tally 4 42078 43121 46674 47708 963 966 80 68 3 12 5397 1068
Stage 5 Cutscene 43121 43378 47708 47953 153 154 104 91 1 13 5398 1081
Stage 5-1 43378 49138 47953 53500 5211 4952 549 395 *@-218 *195 5180 1276
Stage 5-2 49138 50033 53500 54516 802 939 93 77 137 16 5317 1292
Stage 5-3 50033 50685 54516 55178 575 599 77 63 24 14 5341 1306
Stage 5-4 50685 52960 55178 57450 2198 2207 77 65 9 12 5350 1318
Stage 5-5 52960 53629 57450 58163 590 647 79 66 57 13 5407 1331
Stage 5-6 53629 57224 58163 61800 3519 3572 76 65 53 11 5460 1342
Stage 5-7 57224 60390 61800 64924 3034 3019 132 105 +125 +167 5585 1509
Score Tally 5 60390 61427 64924 65797 964 811 73 62 -153 11 5432 1520
Stage 6 Cutscene 61427 61703 65797 66056 171 154 105 87 17 18 5449 1538
Stage 6 Wave 1 61703 62137 66056 66614 430 555 4 3 125 1 5574 1539
Stage 6 Wave 2 62137 62370 66614 66954 233 340 0 0 107 0 5681 1539
Stage 6 Wave 3 62370 63713 66954 68472 1343 1518 0 0 175 0 5856 1539
Stage 6 Wave 4 63713 63832 68472 68693 119 221 0 0 102 0 5958 1539
Stage 6 Wave 5 63832 64462 68693 69829 630 951 78 185 *337 *-91 6295 1448
Stage 6 Wave 6 64462 64621 69829 70072 159 243 0 0 84 0 6379 1448
Stage 6 Wave 7 64621 65910 70072 71743 1062 1125 227 546 63 -319 6358 1129
Stage 6 Wave 8 65910 66221 71743 72155 305 408 6 4 103 2 6461 1131
Stage 6 Boss 1 66221 70627 72155 76740 3896 4117 510 468 *273 *-10 6734 1121
Stage 6 Boss 2 70627 76547 76740 81530 5889 4763 31 27 +0 +1130 6734 2251
Score Tally 6 76547 77578 81530 82399 965 813 65 56 -153 9 6581 2260
Stage 7 Cutscene 77578 77841 82399 82648 165 167 98 82 2 16 6583 2276
Stage 7-1 77841 79847 82648 84859 1704 1897 302 314 *314 *109 6897 2385
Stage 7-2 79847 80442 84859 85540 522 525 73 56 3 17 6900 2402
Stage 7-3 80442 83572 85540 90846 2526 4299 604 1007 +1871 +-305 8771 2097
Stage 7-4 83572 84259 90846 91453 595 535 92 72 @-60 20 8711 2117
Stage 7-5 84259 84638 91453 91825 307 311 72 61 4 11 8715 2128
Final Boss 84638 93284 91825 99159 8527 7263 119 71 +0 +1312 8715 3440
Escape Hatch 93284 93971 99159 99839 618 620 69 60 2 9 8717 3449
Reentry Cutscene 93971 95148 99839 101003 1092 1092 85 72 0 13 8717 3462
Reentry 95148 99408 101003 105251 4181 5182 79 66 1001 13 9718 3475
Total (Input) 0 98288 0 103005 90079 95115 8209 7890 5036 319 (N/A) (N/A)
Total (Gameplay) 0 99408 0 105251 91131 97298 8277 7953 6167 324 (N/A) (N/A)
Note: "Level Loss" and "Total Loss" are not simply differences in lag frame counts, I wanted to make the "loss" counts a sum of total frame loss due to version differences
"*":This level contained non-skippable enemies with higher HP in my version, I totaled the difference, and divided by average damage per frame, then added that number both to level savings, and level loss
"+":This level contained a "1-hit per cycle" boss with higher HP in my version, I took the number of frames per cycle multiplied by the number of extra cycles I had to wait on, and added that number both to level savings, and level loss
"@":On this level I lost time due to inability to take damage, but because of various uncertanties, I was unable to calculate how much time I lost due to that
Final Frame Savings: 5839
Input Frame Savings: 4717 (input is ended later than the prior movie because I need to avoid damage longer during the reentry sequence)

Possible Improvements

  • Changing difficulty -- I learned too late that the only difference hard mode makes is in terms of Boss HP, and the amount of damage Sparkster takes from enemy attacks.
  • Changing versions -- The Japanese version of hard mode allows the player to take some hits without dying, and has decreased HP on some enemies and most bosses.
  • Lag management -- the game lags quite often, and I may not have found the most optimal way to deal with it.
  • Better Boss fights -- there are a couple of boss fights, especially the lava fish, that I'm reasonably certain I didn't find the optimal attack strategy, but couldn't find anything better.

Thanks to

  • CleverDan, for making an old run I could compare to.
  • Deep Loner, for demonstrating the real TAS potential of this game, and explaining the many new tricks he found.
  • Nitsuja, for adding autohold into Gens. This really saved my fingers when I had to hold attack and a direction for long periods.
  • Nitsuja again, for helping show me how to make interesting tools for Gens, like Ram search/watch, camhacks, velocity displays, Layer toggling, and more...
  • Hawq, for developing gens trace, which allowed me to disassemble portions of the game when I needed to figure out the mechanism behind something.
  • The Sonic hacking community as a whole, for all their awesome articles on Object Status Tables, which helped immensely when I decided to make a Hitbox and HP display tool for this game
  • Moozooh, Adelikat, Cardboard, JXQ, Emu, Titus Kwok, mmbossman, ShadowJacky, Raiscan, LagDotCom, and especially Derakon (who registered on these forums just to post that my WIP looked good) for their support in the creation of this run.


NesVideoAgent: Hi! I am a robot. I took a few screenshots of this movie and placed them here. I'm not sure I got the right ROM though. Well, here goes! Feel free to clean up the list.

adelikat: Accepting for publication as an improvement to the published movie.


adelikat: Processing.

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