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

Submission #2976: Eru, Kyman, Mickey/VIS, Moltov, Nahoc, SilentSlayers, snark, sonicpacker's N64 Super Mario 64 "16 stars" in 13:28.4

Console: Nintendo 64
Game name: Super Mario 64
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Super Mario 64 (U) [!].z64
Branch: 16 stars
Emulator: (unknown)
Movie length: 13:28.4
FrameCount: 48504
Re-record count: 131030
Author's real name:
Author's nickname: Eru, Kyman, Mickey/VIS, Moltov, Nahoc, SilentSlayers, snark, sonicpacker
Submitter: Nahoc
Submitted at: 2011-01-11 22:03:44
Text last edited at: 2019-06-13 15:21:08
Text last edited by: adelikat
Download: Download (11263 bytes)
Status: decision: rejected
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Author's comments and explanations:

(Link to video)

Game objectives

This run was built in less than a week and mainly made from hex editing. I asked some SM64 TASers if they would let me use their optimized single star runs and they gladly accepted, which led to this masterpiece. I really hope you enjoy this run!

This run is an improvement of 2 minutes and 58 seconds to the first "16 stars" TAS by Spezzafer and an improvement of 30.6 seconds to the last "16 stars" TAS made by DennisBalow and ReneBalow.

New tricks in this run (pasted from the "0 stars" submission text)

0-Input BLJ

When you have no input on the analog in between the "A" button presses for a BLJ, your speed will not decrease, thus exponentially increasing the speed at the end result of the BLJs. This saves time in a few places.

Pause BLJ

Normally, you can only press the "A" button fifteen times per second because the game runs at thirty frames per second. If you had thirty continuous "A" frames, you'd just be holding "A" down, not tapping it. However, if you pause while pressing the "A" button, you are given an opportunity on the next frame to release the "A" button. You can follow that by repressing it when it's not paused (therefore letting you BLJ the equivalent of thirty times "per second"). This is useful when you need more speed to travel a long distance. It isn't as helpful as it seems as it takes three extra frames to do a Pause BLJ. In order to save time you need the extra speed to save at least 3 frames.

Forward Jump Kick Trick

While Mario is recovering after a forward movement (dive, long jump, etc.), you can hold the "A" button prior to landing, and on the frame you land, press the "B" button with the analog stick at ^54 or less (on the TAS Input Plugin), you will do a jump kick. The trick is that it maintains all of the same speed from before the landing. You can also apply this when moving backwards (such as after a BLJ), by holding "A" before you are in the running animation, and then pressing "B." This causes Mario to do a jump kick and retain the same speed. This is useful for crossing long gaps and covering large distances.

Slide Kicking

This has been found to be the best method of forward movement over a long distance, because unlike the jump kick, you can do it repeatedly without losing speed.

Punch Trick

Instead of running for one frame when accelerating from a stop, you press the "B" button with no analog input, which gives you a starting speed of 10 instead of roughly 8.

Forward Speed Conversion

After triggering text, Mario is in a frozen state with his speed stuck at what it was while activating the text. When the text is read, you have the ability to do many things. One trick we can do with this is to press "C^" (upper C button) and "Z" at the same frame and hold a specific direction to get forward speed (as opposed to backwards speed which we originally used to activate the text). This is useful because forward speed can be used for things like getting to high places, such as the endless stair case. If you don't use Z with C^, your options are limited, because you only move forwards or backwards in a state that will not let Mario jump.

Instant Jump Kick Trick

This trick allows you to jump kick on the very first frame that Mario has input. This also is enables you to choose an angle for Mario to travel. You do this by holding A for at least one frame before Mario can move, then push B and the direction you want to go on the first frame of input.

Star times (excluding text messages)

Star Time
Bowser in the Dark World Red Coins 34"87
Blast Away the Wall 7"17
Fall onto the Caged Island 9"20
Shoot into the Wild Blue 9"23
Inside the Ancient Pyramid 16"95
Shining Atop the Pyramid 6"13
In the Talons of the Big Bird 13"67
Hot-Foot-It into the Volcano 16"07
8-Coin Puzzle with 15 Pieces 13"90
Red-Hot Log Rolling 7"50
Boil the Big Bully 14"37
Swimming Beast in the Cavern 14"90
Watch for Rolling Rocks 14"13
A-Maze-ing Emergency Exit 10"77
Board Bowser's Sub 33"48
Bowser in the Fire Sea 22"27
Bowser in the Sky 29"30



He did Boil the Big Bully (which was a pain to hex, along with Watch for Rolling Rocks).


He did Bowser in the Dark World Red Coins, 8-Coin Puzzle with 15 Pieces, Watch for Rolling Rocks and Bowser in the Sky entry. Huge thanks to him, since I was struggling with that last part.


He did Hot-Foot-It into the Volcano, Shining Atop the Pyramid and Inside the Ancient Pyramid.

The "0 stars" team

They let me use their Lakitu skip, Bowser in the Dark World entry, Bowser in the Fire Sea and Bowser in the Sky.

The Japanese SM64 community

They did Fall onto the Caged Island and Shoot into the Wild Blue.

Special thanks


He supported me and helped hexing the rerecords.

Efrain and Jesus

They let me take a look at their "16 stars" WIP which helped me saving 1 frame from the second key door to Shifting Sand Land.

DennisBalow and ReneBalow

Their "16 stars" TAS helped me for comparison.

The SM64.org community

For keeping SM64 speedrunning, hacking and TASing alive!

Suggested Screenshots

DarkKobold: Claimed for judging

DarkKobold: I'd like to first start by saying that this run was extremely well done, and no one is questioning that.

However, in reality, the original 16 star, followed by the 1 star, and finally 0 star are technically mislabeled, and should all be labeled as "any%," for purposes of site standardization. (Why Super Mario 64 got special treatment is beyond me). Originally, that wasn't a problem, as no one was clamoring for a 1 star run over a 0 star run. Now, it has to be dealt with as a separate category.

That said, a precedent for this has been set, in #2136: Saturn's SNES Super Metroid "glitchless low%" in 42:37.13. I'll quote mmbossman:

"Quoting the Judge Guidelines: ‘’Keep the number of different branches per a game minimal.’’ This run is an attempt to resurrect a movie branch that is now obsolete, ..., and I see no need to resurrect a dead category."

The majority of the audience has stated things in agreement with that last sentiment. As there is no major reason to revive this category, I am rejecting for goal choice.

See also [1297] SNES EarthBound (USA) by pirohiko in 1:10:00.95 and [1285] SNES Chrono Trigger (USA) "save glitch" by inichi in 21:23.98 for precedent.

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