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

Submission #1950: BZero's NES King's Quest V: Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder in 33:27.63

Console: Nintendo Entertainment System
Game name: King's Quest V: Absence Makes the Heart Go Yonder
Game version: USA
ROM filename: King's Quest V (U) [!].nes
Emulator: FCEUX 2.1.5
Movie length: 33:27.63
FrameCount: 120656
Re-record count: 5386
Author's real name: W.R.
Author's nickname: BZero
Submitter: BZero
Submitted at: 2008-04-25 22:07:17
Text last edited at: 2012-11-11 15:45:56
Text last edited by: Brandon
Download: Download (12570 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:

(Link to video)

King's Quest V 100% run.


For my first ever TAS, I decided to TAS a King's Quest game as I'm quite fond of the series. The problem with this, of course, is that the King's Quest games are all PC games, so I had to go with this NES port instead. That's okay, though; apart from the graphics, it's just as good as the original, really.

About the game

King's Quest V is a "point and click" adventure game. Items must be gathered, traded and otherwise used in order to find other items... occasinally, items may even be used to progress in the game! Imagine that! An example from the game: -Get fish. -Use fish to get honey. -Use honey to get shoes. -Trade shoes for hammer. -Use hammer to get crystal. -Use crystal to be able to progress in the game. Quite ridiculous, but that's how these old adventure games play. And, of course, if you missed an item in an area you can't go back to, you're screwed. This game is not forgiving. As for the story of the game, it tells the tale of King Graham whose entire family (not to mention his castle!) gets shrunk and put in a jar by the evil wizard Mordack. King Graham seeks help from the good wizard Crispin and Cedric the owl, and sets out on a journey to save his family. That's about it. If you want to follow the storyline as you watch the TAS, you should open the ROM and watch the intro first, as I skip right past the intro in the video.

About the run

First of all, since there are very few points that can be avoided in the first place (you can avoid meeting the blue monster (the second time) and the cat in Mordack's castle, which also means you don't have to pick up the second fish and the pea bag), I decided to go for a maximum score run, getting all 260 points. Other than that, I always tried to do everything as fast as possible by...

  • ...finding the fastest route through the game
    • After getting an overview of the Serenia forest and the desert, and where the needed items were, planning the routes for these two areas was pretty easy. Not so obvious, however, were the routes through the dark forest, and the town (when trading items). Here I had to test the various possibilities to make sure I used the fastest route. From the mountain part and out, the game is more straightforward.
  • ...doing all the walking myself
    • When, for example, picking up and item, you can move the cursor over to the item and make Graham pick it up as soon as you enter the screen; Graham would automatically walk over to the item and pick it up. I quickly realized I couldn't do that, though, as Graham's automatic walking speed is much slower than his regular walking speed. I saved a lot of time by manually walking over to the spot where Graham would have automatically placed himself. This (usually) also reduced the distance I had to move the cursor, as the cursor always appears where Graham is standing.

Other than that, I just make sure to select every action (closing text boxes, cycling through the inventory etc.) on the first possible frame. You know, obvious things like that.


  • alden, for teaching me how to use Memory Search
  • Randil, for finding some of the most important memory addresses for me (before alden taught me how to find them myself)

NesVideoAgent: Hi! I am a robot. I took a few screenshots of this movie and placed them here. Oh! I also corrected the ROM name.
  • You indicated King's Quest V (U).nes
  • I updated it to King's Quest V (U) [!].nes

Truncated: Rejected. I didn't find this movie enjoyable, or the game humorous, and it seems some other people did the same.

adelikat: Unrejecting and accepting for publication to the Vault

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