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

Submission #2684: Randil's NES Kid Kool in 13:50.03

Console: Nintendo Entertainment System
Game name: Kid Kool
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Kid Kool (U).nes
Emulator: (unknown)
Movie length: 13:50.03
FrameCount: 49884
Re-record count: 15150
Author's real name: Johan Södling
Author's nickname: Randil
Submitter: Randil
Submitted at: 2010-05-24 11:55:31
Text last edited at: 2010-05-26 09:49:56
Text last edited by: Randil
Download: Download (7288 bytes)
Status: decision: cancelled
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Author's comments and explanations:
Cancelling due to known improvements, see discussion thread. Sorry for the inconvenience!

As I said in this post, I have a habit of abandoning projects for quite some time, and then pick them up several weeks (or months) later and finish them. This is one of those cases. I submitted a run of this game about a year ago, here. This run is 799 frames (13.32) seconds faster than that run.

There are games that are fun to play but make for a boring TAS. Then there are games that are terrible to play, but make an entertaining TAS. In my opinion, this run is the latter. Kid Kool is a guy who can run very fast, and he has a furry ball named Wicky that he uses as a weapon. For some reason, enemies can't take getting hit by this soft buddy, so throwing him on enemies will kill them. This game is very similiar to the game Psycho Fox.

About the game

The story in the game is that you have to collect 7 herbs in order to save the king's life. He need them for a certain medicine or something, I guess.

Kid Kool is, as stated above, in many ways a rip-off of Psycho Fox. The goal on each stage is simply to get from start to finish. Every third level there is a boss, who you kill by jumping on a pump until it hits the bottom. Sometimes the boss' neck is the pump. Yes, really.

The first thing you'll notice is that it takes quite a while for Kid Kool to accelerate to top speed. But once he has, he runs pretty darn fast. Keeping top speed throughout the whole level isn't always possible, but overall, I keep top speed throughout most of the levels. The most common reason for slowing down is to avoid bumping in to a wall.

Kid Kool can't accelerate during a jump, he maintains the speed he had when the jump was made during the entire jump.

Kid Kool can also jump on water, as long his speed is high enough. He can't jump on water if he lands on it after a jump.

You can jump on enemies, just like in Super Mario, however, enemies usually take several jumps to kill - they usually get pushed down into the ground by the first jump.

After each stage, there is a wheel of fortune type game, where you have a chance to get extra lives. You need to have collected sacks of coins in order to play this game, but obviously this would only waste time in a TAS, therefor I avoid all sacks of coins. The sacks are found in hidden boxes throughout the level (kinda like those hidden boxes in SMB).

Everyone who has played this game will learn to hate the air cannons. These horrible, horrible, cannons are mounted to the wall, ground or roof, and will shoot air puffs. These air puffs will push you in the direction they're travelling. These are the source of several slowdows in this run.

The furry ball that I pick up on level 1-1 is Wicky, your only weapon in this game. You throw him at enemies to kill them, and after a while, he comes zooming back to you. You can not deal damage to bosses with him.

Some comments on this TAS

This run is 799 frames faster than my cancelled run. The improvements come from using the flag poles better on level 5-3, faster boss fights, fixing some other minor mistakes and optimizing movements.

Here I'll comment on things that might look odd or that I think need commenting:

  • The way the pump works on boss levels is quite complex. There is a timer that decides when you can jump on the pump again, and this timer will only increase when the pump is not moving. The pump moves whenever you touch it, so you don't want to stand on the pump more than necessary.
  • Wicky can be used to stop bosses from moving. In particular, by throwing him against the right wall while the boss is close enough, he will continuosly damage the boss, making him stand still while I can focus on jumping on the pump. Note that this does not actually damage the boss, the only way to deal damage to him is to use the pump.
  • I manipulate luck (kill the boss on a specific frame) to make the herb move to the right when it appears on screen. Where the herb appears depends on the boss' X position when he dies.
  • On level 3-3, the boss can't be held in the right corner because he would cover the pump.
  • The "running backwards" trick on 3-1 is only a visual trick, and neither saves nor wastes time.
  • Basically all weird slow downs, especially the long wait in level 3-2, is done in order to manipulate the air cannons. The only way I found to manipulate them is to wait, so at times there will be some ugly, but non-avoidable, maneuvers.
  • If I run back a bit at the start of a level, it is to gain a bit more speed before a jump.
  • Kid Kool can't run on sand without slowing down, so I avoid doing so where possible.

The rerecord count is a bit messed up due to a lot of editing. It should be fairly close to the real value, though.

I hope you enjoy watching this run!

Randil: Cancelling due to known improvements, see discussion thread. Sorry for the inconvenience!

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