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

Submission #1938: Cpadolf's SNES Gradius 3 in 25:31.4

Console: Super NES
Game name: Gradius 3
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Gradius III (U) [!].smc
Emulator: (unknown)
Movie length: 25:31.4
FrameCount: 91884
Re-record count: 52082
Author's real name: Filip Roskvist
Author's nickname: Cpadolf
Submitter: cpadolf
Submitted at: 2008-04-16 00:36:58
Text last edited at: 2008-05-26 01:33:07
Text last edited by: adelikat
Download: Download (12605 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:

Emulator Information

  • Emulator used: Snes9x 1.43v12(beta10)
  • Sync settings:
    • Use WIP1 timing
    • Sync samples with sound CPU (This is alternative, according to moozooh it gives better sound effects quality, I did not record with this setting though, as it somehow screwed up my computer

About the run

This is an improvement to Krocketneo's previously published 100% kills Gradius 3 TAS, it is about 2 minutes and 53 seconds faster and has a higher percentage of kills.

I actually never got interested in the game until I saw the latest TAS of it, (I have only played it through once) I found it entertaining but I also found it quite unoptimized and I thought there where a lot of wasted potential for movement. So I decided to give it a try, hoping to save at least 10 seconds over the run which evidently I did.

Sadly though I would still not call this a true 100% kills movie, in level 4 a couple of fire rings get destroyed by the environment instead of me, and in level 5 there might have been 1 or 2 small rocks that slipped past me in the fire unnoticed. Also after the 4th boss there are stones falling from the ceiling which are destroyable, but it was impossible to take all of them so I decided to leave them all for a cleaner look. However I do kill all enemies in both level 4 and 7. (the vertically scrolling ones) It might look like I miss some but that is only a illusion, the stages are much smaller than one would think. (about 1.5-2 screens tall)

The improvements is about 90% lag reduction and 10% better boss fights. I generally kill more enemies faster with less shots which in some areas saves insane amounts of time, and by finding most of the bosses health addresses I was able to kill them quicker. Also a commonly used thing in my boss fights is to let some of the options be inside the boss temporarliy while starting to charge the beam, this will make their charge counter go down to zero and that allows me to fire multiple fully powered charged shots at slightly different frames to make the boss get hit by all of them (or at least enough) instead of being damaged by one and absorbing the rest during it's invincibility time. I think most of the boss fights are fully optimal, some might be improvable by a frame or two and one or two might be improvable by more if you find fully optimal placing for your options, this is unlikely though.

Also this game lags a lot... I removed maybe 40-45% of it but it is still VERY noticeable through out the run. In total there is a little more than 3 minutes of lag left, so there is your theoretical improvement :) (completely impossible though)

EDIT: Due to the controversial ending I made a second version that physically kills the final boss. The movie file is 1223 frames longer but the boss dies much sooner.


Frame savings per level and lag per level left.


50 Frames saved

Level 1:

151 Frames saved 136 Lag frame left

Level 2:

933 Frames saved 1949 Lag frames left

Level 3:

2081 Frames saved 2228 Lag frame left

Level 4:

1270 Frames saved 822 Lag frame left

Level 5:

1308 Frames saved 1478 Lag frames left

Level 6:

503 Frames saved 1247 Lag frame left

Level 7:

432 Frames saved 177 Lag frame left


246 Frames saved 1046 Lag frame left

Level 8

1255 Frames saved 581 Lag frames left

Level 9:

2138 Frames saved 1438 Lag frame left

10356 Frames saved in total 11101 Lag frames left

Thanks to

People who have worked on this game earlier (I think Krocketneo, Warp and tviks) Also much thanks to nitsujrehtona who made a excellent lua script for the game which helped me greatly in the last two levels.

NesVideoAgent: Hi! I am a robot. I took a few screenshots of this movie and placed them here. Here goes! Feel free to clean up the list.

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

adelikat: Publication underway

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