TASVideos

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

Submission #2696: DarkKobold's GBA Shining Soul II in 1:30:01.18

Console: Game Boy Advance
Game name: Shining Soul II
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Shining Soul II (U).gba
Branch:
Emulator: (unknown)
Movie length: 1:30:01.18
FrameCount: 324071
Re-record count: 98048
Author's real name: K. Thomson
Author's nickname: DarkKobold
Submitter: DarkKobold
Submitted at: 2010-06-07 01:07:51
Text last edited at: 2010-06-25 21:10:40
Text last edited by: Aktan
Download: Download (21323 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:
Yet another Shining TAS from DarkKobold.

Shining Soul II

Shining Soul II is an Action RPG by Atlus. The game departs from it's predecessor in many ways, including the lack of a monument system, a changed RNG, faster paced action, and more character classes. Additionally, the storyline and setting departs completely from any previous Shining title, and instead focuses on a young warrior protecting a generic kingdom. Unfortunately, it also suffers the same problem as the previous iteration, as boss text moves extremely slow, and no amount of button presses can speed it by. This becomes very annoying at the end of the game.

Luck Manipulation

Unlike Shining Soul 1, the RNG is 100% frame-based, and thus, the number of attack options was limited. However, each attack still had to be manipulated with a range of 5-30 frames per attack. Some bosses take an upward of 100 to 150 hits to kill, and each attack took 10-30 seconds to manipulate, using a Lua script that checked the next 30 frames worth of attacks. This was extremely, extremely tedious. Additionally, I will stand on top of a chest for a few frames to ~2 seconds to manipulate the item dropped.

Character Choice

I pick the ninja due to the speed spell ability, as well as his fast attack rate. Like SS1, starting attack power doesn't matter as much, as I dump all stat points I gain per level into attack. In this run, I level up the speed spell once, criticals to level 3, and sword to level 3.

Enemies

Unlike SS1, enemies in SS2 can be 'scrolled away,' i.e. by simply walking fast enough, new spawn spots can occur for enemies. This allowed me to kill far, far fewer enemies than SS1 required, but also makes me extremely weak going into the later stages. It is extremely rare that any level requires more than a single in enemy killed to move to the next area, and a large number of areas do not require any enemies be killed.

Run Z, Run!

The speed spell was essential to increasing the speed of this TAS. The spell lasts 50 seconds, and depletes at all times, including during dialog and screen transitions, which are ~2 seconds each. This constant depletion forces me to re-up the effect through the entire run. A majority of this TAS is spent running through levels, ignoring enemies. Additionally, enemies can be avoided by hugging walls in a diagonal direction, towards the wall and the desired direction.

The Dungeons

Goblin Fort

I manipulate the drop of a Battle Blade, which doubles my attack power. However, I need to level up the Sword skill once to use it. Also, I manage to break the bookcase that holds the prison key on the final swipe against the mini-boss goblin. With the Battle Blade, I only have to deal with 1 1/2 cycles against Gobovich. Also, you will notice the endless cycle of ass-kissing the bosses perform after I kill them. Some call me a great hero, others ask for favors. It is truly bizarre.

Giant's Graveyard

The Grove Giant unfortunately takes many cycles to kill. I tried to minimize this by increasing my critical rate, before the battle.

Wizari's Palace

I manipulate a Scimitar Drop, which is the strongest weapon at this point, and luckily is also still level 1. I also wait for armor 'of talent' to drop, from Wizari's chest. 'of talent' ads +12 to dexterity, which greatly reduces the amount of misses I get. I don't have the cash to identify it yet, so I wait until a good gem from a future boss. Wizari's battle seems easy, but it is actually fairly difficult to avoid the Living Armor in the middle.

Fairy Spring

This is a pretty uneventful area, however, I had to manipulate the starting point for each level, so I was in the best place to allow the boss to spawn.

Robert's Pirate Ship

The Dread Pirate Robert shows his face, which should be totally inconceivable, or inevitable. I don't know which word to use. I found the dialog rather amusing for this level, and thankfully, the Kraken doesn't have nearly any. Running from the Kraken Ink, getting hits on the boss, and avoiding the tail proved to be an interesting challenge. I get an Orihalcon to drop, which I sell for 1250, allowing me to identify the armor of talent.

Driazhek Desert

As PCachu noted, the puns in this game are horrendous. (Dry as heck?). Luckily, this level starts the game's habit of allowing me to leave an area without killing any enemies. Unluckily, it also has a few areas which require really powerful enemies to be killed. I force a broadsword to be dropped right before the mid-level boss of super annoyance. This actually saved almost a minute over my first attempt. The final boss proved to be far less annoying, and goes down easily.

Koldazhek Cave (Cold as heck)

It takes me a minute of swiping away at Camile to get her free. This is probably the biggest improvement that could be done to this TAS, however, it requires far advance planning, as the grenade shop shuts down after level 3, and I didn't want to redo three levels for that purpose, so I manipulate as much damage as quick as possible. The boss was also very painful, as I had to determine the number of attacks to do, to get the correct legs to appear. It is possible for no legs to appear after a spin, which leaves me useless. Additionally, I manipulate bracers of talent to drop from the boss chest, giving me a total of +24 Dex, which is enough to hit every enemy through the end of the game with high enough frequency.

Demon's Castle

I get a semi-"shout out" at the beginning of this level. The guard's name is Kobodis, and is a Kobold. How awesome is that? Kobolds.... featured in a Shining game. Also, I get a chance to fight a non-glowing-green version of myself. This boss is a pain in real-time, as he runs and slashes for as much damage as I can do. The final boss of the level luckily stands still and takes a ton of damage. At one point, I try and seem very ninja, by meditating during one of the final boss's attacks.

Hottazhek Volcano

Another horrible pun, and 3 boss battles. Luckily, Gilespe's attack are easy to avoid in a TAS, while not disrupting the flow of damage. After Gilespe battle 1, I use the time spent in the menus to draw all the enemies I have to kill closer to me, which takes less time to kill them as a group. Also, I take 1 of 2 unavoidable damage in this run, running through lava. The final boss of this level has 6000 hit points, more than any other boss in the game, including Chaos. I swap to the knife numerous times to deal a little extra damage while running from his foot.

Chaos Castle

Lots of running in this part. At one point, I stop to let 2 purple fiends spawn, and then attack. This allowed me to out run them, so the red boss fiend could spawn. Also, I take the other unavoidable damage in the run, which puts me perfectly at 1 HP till the end of the game. In the Deatharte battle, I run far from Deatharte, which gives the slow green cloud more time to desolve, allowing me more hits against Deatharte after it is gone. After I whoop Deatharte's ass, he decides to give me a lecture on fighting. The dialogue in this game is just silly.

Chaos

So, at 75 minutes into the run, the game seems over... the king sends you to talk to a random bartender. One thing leads to another, and the bartender reveals he is hiding a portal under the bar. Yes, after going through 10 dungeons, the biggest, baddest, meanest boss of the game is underneath the video game equivalent of Buffalo Wild Wings. It is a silly, silly place to take the plot, and I will have none of it. Anyway, I finally get to fight Chaos an entire 6 minutes after the silliness starts. I swipe away at him, run, and swipe some more. He is invulnerable during the spawning of an enemy. 2 minutes later, Chaos is dead, and I can stop the TAS... but wait, there is more!

Photographer

The final, final boss of the game is a photographer, which insists on taking a picture of a bunch of people from the game I never actually encountered. I totally ruin this idea with a photo bomb, as seen here. Also, the camera is magically able to take a picture of itself.


FractalFusion: Well planned and executed. Accepting for publication.

Aktan: Processing...


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