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

Submission #2511: Mukki's PSX Crash Bandicoot in 45:29.5

Console: Sony PlayStation
Game name: Crash Bandicoot
Game version: USA
ROM filename: crashbandicoot.bin
Emulator: (unknown)
Movie length: 45:29.5
FrameCount: 163770
Re-record count: 62286
Author's real name: I. Masterson
Author's nickname: Mukki
Submitter: Mukki
Submitted at: 2009-12-25 13:58:50
Text last edited at: 2010-01-14 17:00:14
Text last edited by: sgrunt
Download: Download (12408 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:
Merry Christmas TASvideos!

This is an any% run of the seminal playstation platformer 'Crash Bandicoot'. I first started TASing this game almost immediately after mz released his first pcsx-rr. I realised the huge potential in PSX TASing and wanted to get to know the emulator and used this game as I am very familiar with it. Unfortunately, the emulator was unstable and prone to desyncs and crashes so I put the project on the backburner for a while. I restarted this summer with the more recent v0.1.2.

NOTE: I didn't experience any desync while recording this movie because I used the TAS sound plugin. However, this plugin is not particularly good for this game. The music is fine, but the sfx is almost completely lost. Eternal emulates the sound perfectly, but it may be a massive pain in the ass to edit in for whoever encodes this. Unfortunately I lack the experience to do it myself so hopefully it is not a huge problem either way.

Notes on Tricks, Glitches and Optimisation

  • Movement: Crash's fastest movement speed is with the third mask (velocity = 12), however due to the death requirements it can harldly be used. The next down is spinning (velocity = 10), rather than walking (velocity = 9). However, when crash stops spinning his velocity drops to 7 for two input frames before returning to 9. This makes spinning ultimately slower. If, however, Crash jumps two frames before his velocity drops to 7 it will go straight to 9 instead. This saves a frame every time it is used.

  • Spin Delay (Very Important): Spin Delay is the most annoying thing about TASing this game. The player cannot continually spin and there is usually a delay between the end of one spin and when the other can begin. This seems simple enough, but what is annoying is that it is very inconsistent. I searched through a good bit of the memory trying to find a spin counter of some sort but came out empty handed. My hypothesis is that there is some sort of 'tank' (address) that fills every time a spin is used until full causing delay. This is because, in my experience, the delay is incredibly short near the beginning of a level and longer nearer the end. The fastest movement would be to chain jumps and spins, but because I need to concentrate on collecting boxes in some levels I cannot do this as the delay would force me to run past a box that I require. Also some objects need to be spun in order to become active and so this is also an issue here. If there is anything in this run that looks manifestly suboptimal this is why.

  • The Death Thing: If you complete a level in one life while collecting all boxes you recieve a gem. If you collect a gem from every level you have completed the game 100%. If you complete a level in one life without collecting all boxes the game counts down the boxes that you have missed. This takes time and can be avoided by suiciding in the level. As this is an any% run suicides are often necessary to avoid this, however not in every level as you can often collect most boxes in a level easily en route. The end of level total takes 185 frames plus 18 frames per box so it must be tested if it is faster to suicide. While TASing I was leaning on the opinion that less deaths are better and so where the difference was negligible then life was chosen as a speed/entertainment tradeoff (Road to Nowhere being an example). I stick by my decision to run this game any% to begin with as I feel that the excessive saving times after collecting a gem are more annoying than the suicides (as seen in The Lost City).

  • Gripping: This trick can be used to clear normally impossible gaps. Crash's grip of platforms is very buggy and he can be surprisingly far into a ravine while still having an active ground flag. This is used in many places, but it is not particularly obvious in real time so I abuse it heavily on the first elevator in Slippery Climb. This does not work if crash is in a spinning animation.

  • Spinning Invincibility: If you spin before landing on a spike or enemy you can jump off it before the damage is registered. Saves nice time in many places in Native Fortress and Slippery Climb.

  • 3rd Dimension Abuse: This game has many 2D levels and the designers attempted to have these within 2D parameters, however in some 2D levels it is possible to jump towards the camera and bend around normally impassible objects.

  • Spinning TNT: While running past TNT there is a small frame window where if you spin you will blow up the TNT but will be too far away from the explosion to be killed by it. This is a good way to get rid of the TNT crates and some other nearby boxes.

  • Double Jumping: This only seems to work on the temple levels for some reason. If you are on a moving pillar and you spin and the spin enters the 7 phase as you jump the ground flag is messed up. You will be in the 7 animation in mid air and as if you press X again one frame after this you can jump a second time allowing larger gamps to be cleared.

  • Wall Glitch: You can use the walls in The Lost City and Sunset Vista to push you off the edge while retaining the ground flag and this can be used to escape the level and skip large portions of it. This can only really be used in the horizontal scrolling sections of these levels. In the vertical ones it is possible but you cannot reenter the level. This is used in Sunset Vista, but not in the lost city due to the route.

Level Notes

  • N. Sanity Beach
    • Using the mask saves 2 seconds per use, but due to deaths it cannot be used often.

  • Jungle Rollers
    • You must wait for one invincibility to end before getting a new one.

  • Hog Wild
    • Holding up does not add to the speed here. I don't know why I used to think it did.

  • Native Fortress
    • I get huge spin delay on the spinning platform on this level in several places.
    • At the top taking the back route behind the fence is slower.
    • This is probably my favourite level in the run apart from Sunset Vista.

  • The Lost City
    • I collect the gem here so that I can skip Castle Machinery later in the run.

  • Temple Ruins
    • The timed objects in this level were particularly nasty.

  • Heavy Machinery
    • I can use 3D abuse nearer the end where you see it, but not on the earlier parts of the level where you don't.

Baxter: Accepting for publication.

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