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Submission #3482: RingRush's PSX Croc: Legend of the Gobbos "100%" in 1:18:35.43

Console: Sony PlayStation
Game name: Croc: Legend of the Gobbos
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Croc - Legend of the Gobbos [U] [SLUS-00530].img
Branch: 100%
Emulator: (unknown)
Movie length: 1:18:35.43
FrameCount: 282926
Re-record count: 167645
Author's real name: Matthew I.
Author's nickname: RingRush
Submitter: RingRush
Submitted at: 2012-03-02 09:48:02
Text last edited at: 2012-04-25 23:48:57
Text last edited by: Aktan
Download: Download (32565 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:

(Link to video)

Boring stuff:

Overview

Croc is a game about a crocodile that uses his power of floatation to glide through the world and save his gobbo friends. Really though, Croc only floats because of heavy glitching.

This run was made over the course of a bit over a year. It has gone through multiple hex edits and resynchs from the start.

TASing this game is about angles, angles, and angles. Since this is a 3D game with 2D U/L/D/R controls, getting a perfect angle is much harder than it looks and takes up the a lot of time and rerecords. To complicate matters, there is a constant tension between angles and speed, since changing angles faster than normal or making a turn sharper requires cutting speed. I found myself opening paint and solving geometry problems more than once, trying to decide the best way to proceed.

There are a lot of minor tricks used to optimize angles, but I won't go into all of them. That would require a full explanation of the angle system, and I don't think it is really needed to enjoy watching the run.

100%

This run is operating under the following 100% definition:
  • Must complete 5-B (Secret Sentinel)
  • Must collect all 8 jigsaw pieces
  • Must collect all 144 individual gobbos (no duplication of gobbos in order to skip others)
  • Does not need to collect objects that are not saved after leaving a level (this includes crystals, silver keys, gold keys, color crystals, and extra lives)

For more information on gobbo duplication and why it was banned, check out this post

Of everyone I've talked to, it is pretty much unanimous that 100% is more entertaining than any%. If you have seen the any% on this site and were not satisfied, I encourage you to give this run a chance anyways :).

General Tricks

Hovering: I’ve had multiple people come up to me while I was working on this and ask why the game is about a flying crocodile. It isn’t – this is just a glitch that you will see me use almost constantly during the run. If you do a short jump on frame X, cancel your ability to pound (via being near the ground, performing a 180, or tail attacking), and try to pound anyways on frame X+10, Croc will hover in the air. This does not last forever! If during the run you question “why didn’t he just hover over that” or “why did he stop there”, the answer is most likely because it is too far to hover across.

Moving Diagonally: Croc’s horizontal and vertical speed are dealt with separately. Therefore, when you are moving up and right/left, you are moving more pixels per second than moving straight forward. By moving diagonally, I increase my movement speed by around 10%. This isn’t huge, but over the course of the run it saves A LOT of time (and allows me to clear some gaps I couldn’t otherwise). To get the maximum left-right velocity, I need to be airborne. This is why I constantly hover – the more time I spend in the air, the more I get to stay at top speed.

Wall Jumping: A very useful trick that allows you to jump off of a wall texture to gain extra height. This simply requires really precise positioning and jumping the frame you land. It only works in very specific places where the walls are designed a certain way.
Hyper Turning: By alternating holding up and letting it go every frame, Croc turns at about triple the speed. Unfortunately, letting go of forward obviously slows you down. Despite this, it had a fair amount of applications during the run since it is so much faster than normal turning.
Grab Boosting: When you grab a ledge while facing the proper direction, you may sometimes do a “false grab”, where you perform the animation but fall anyways. Under the right circumstances, if you press up at the correct frame during a false grab, you will get a height boost that can propel you onto the ledge. In the any% this was used a few times...in the 100% it is used quite a lot. The only times where you can grab but not grab boost are small circular platforms at the end of a long hover, for reasons I don't feel like going into.

Loading Zone Tricks: There are a few things that fall under this. First off, I’ll sometimes enter a loading zone from the side or the top. Usually, this just allows me to have a more direct route. Other times, however, ignoring doors allows me to skip gold keys and even color crystals! Secondly, in the ice world, during any “icy” (outside) section, you can activate the loading zone up to around ten frames early, for some unknown (but still manipulatable) reason. Finally, when entering into the pot-like loading zones, you can save 3 or 4 frames by landing on the proper place on top of them instead of falling into them. There are two exceptions in this run - see if you can spot them!

Movement Anomalies: A lot of interesting things happen if you alternate directions every frame or every other frame. You'll see plenty of these over the course of the run, durining minigames, boss fights, or any other time I have to wait on a moving platform.

Level Exits: By exiting any of the jigsaw levels (1-S1, etc) the frame before the level complete screen appears, you can save about 5 seconds and still have the level registered as complete. This does not work in any level that ends in a gong or a boss kill, unfortunately.

Tail Swipe Invulernability: When Croc is doing a tail attack, he cannot take damage from anything except lava, fireballs, and enemy shots. This is abused sometimes throughout the run, such as passing through the enemy in the final room of 2-6.

Other notes

  • There are two types of ground pound - one that stops on contact with a breakable object, and one that continues to the ground. They are both used throughout the run, and several factors go into determining which is faster at any given box.
  • Sometimes, it is faster to crash into a wall slightly and lower your speed to get a sharper turn (especially on staircases in the fourth world), but most times it isn't. There are a lot of options for any turn, so it takes quite a bit of testing.
  • Running downhill, your speed increases. Running uphill, your speed decreases. Makes sense. At various points in the run, I will cut my hover short specifically so I can land on a small downhill section and boost my speed for a few frames (the boost is extremely minor, often only worth about a tenth of a frame…but every bit counts!).
  • Swimming sections have really, really strange turning physics. No, the 180 flip is never faster.
  • Taking damage does not slow you down at all unless you are standing on the ground. Dieing in the air leads to a much faster fadeout time than dieing on the ground.
  • Dantini shots can be dodged in a variety of ways, or can simply be tanked if you have crystals to spare. Some tricks used are being too high or too low, changing elevation rapidly at the time the Dantini shoots, or simply be too far away while moving too fast. Usually they are not that much of a problem, but a few in the final world (especially in 5-3) can be troublesome if you do not have crystals to absorb the blow.
  • There are three types of 180 flip trick: running, standing, and jumping. Whether I do the first or the third depends on the situation. The second is slower and is only used once in the run for an obscure situation whether the other two won't work.
  • When hovering over moving platforms, their speed is added to yours. Thus, it is always good to hover over platforms moving in the same direction as you and to avoid those moving in the opposite direction.
  • Random invisible walls are sometimes problematic for no apparent reason when hovering (and only when hovering, which is strange). If at points I seem to take a strange-ish hovering path, these are usually to blame.
  • Pressing jump the frame before landing on a jelly gives a large height boost that you can actually hover off of, although the timing is different.
  • When heading in a cardinal direction, you can actually be slightly off angle and still keep maximum speed in that direction. This is occasionally used to move slightly to the left or right while still going full speed ahead.

Stage specific comments

1-1: And So The Adventure Begins: Nothing much to say here. The heart at the end of this stage is the fastest one (before I hit 0 lives in 3-6) that I omitted; it is slightly more costly than the largest deathwarp I omit saves.

1-2: Underground, Overground: Again, not much to say here. I lose a few frames to get 10 extra crystals from the pound in the last room, which will help me get the 100-crystal heart later on.

1-3: Shoutin' Lava Lava Lava: In the final room, if you hit the last switch too quickly after hitting it the first time it won't register. I hit the switch on the first frame possible. To skip the color crystals, I clip through a specific point in the wall that has poor collision detection. Also, this level contains the first minor and major minigame - enjoy the destruction of those stupid sheep.

1-B1: Lair of the Feeble: If you look closely after the first hit, you can see where the Feeble went when he dissapeared - high into the sky above the level.

1-S1: The Curvy Caverns: A straightforward level that gives me the first jigsaw piece. Nothing much to say here.

1-4: The Tumbling Dantini: You are supposed to get that second gobbo from above, but using a wall jump I can grab it from below. The deathwarp is to allow me to skip color crystals by clipping through another weak seam. The room with gobbo #5 is the largest deathwarp I omit, see 1-1.

1-5: Cave Fear: Can't think of anything special here...I really should be watching the run while typing this instead of doing it off of memory. :p

1-6: Darkness Descends: In the Saturn version this level is actually dark...I don't know why it isn't for PS1. Anyways, not much to say off the top of my head, other than swimming is really dumb and I wish it wasn't in this game.

1-B2: Fight Night With Flibby: Flibby is an awesome boss - good music, fun to play, and entertaining in a TAS. Invisible walls in the first room? Not so fun.

1-S2: The Twisty Tunnels: Nothing to see here...no way to skip the slow final platform ride up to the jigsaw piece.

2-1: The Ice of Life: Puns in level names are awesome. Pretty standard applications of tricks here, with wall jumping, hovering, grab boosting, and color crystal skipping all entering the mix at some point.

2-2: Be Wheely Careful: These level names man. Anyways, waterfall boosts are a combination damage boost + grab boost that can be used to get extra height. Here, they act as a timesaver when performing the color crystal skip (you can actually head to the start of the room instead to jump on the monkey bars). The cauldron game is a fun highlight that I recommend watching.

2-3: Riot Brrrrr: Hyper turning in the second room is equally fast as doing a flip trick, just mixing stuff up a bit. While swimming, there are plenty of opportunities to zip from bad collision detection. Here, I zip upwards right after entering the area.

2-B1: Chumly's Snow Den: Unfortunately, I do not treat Chumly like a chum. It still weighs on my conscience.

2-S1: Clouds of Ice: "Hahaha that jigsaw piece level is like the most non-climatic thing I've ever seen! XD Nice work" - TheCrypticJacknife

2-4: I Snow Him So Well: More waterfall boosting and the most complicated color crystal skip in the run. You can actually do a much easier one, but it requires not breaking the box with the gobbo inside, so it is fairly pointless. Also who is "him" in the level title?

2-5: Say No Snow: No snow. Okay, that's a lie, plenty of snow. Sliding down that long slope in the first room is significantly faster, even if it the ride is a bit rough. You unfortunately cannot grab boost onto that platform in the fourth room, so I have to take a longer way to the top.

2-6: License to Chill: Another three switch minigame so more fun. I end up getting a lot of crystals in this level just by following the normal route, in addition to 2 extra ones at the cost of a frame. These will help with the 100 crystal life later. Taking a more direct route to the purple crystal in the penultimate room is just barely not possible; a hover is a few fames too short.

2-B2: Demon (Sh)Itsy's Ice Palace: Screw this boss. His spawn locations and vulnerability times are luck-based, so this boss was a major pain and had to be redone after hexing earlier levels.

2-S2: Ice Bridge to Eternity: I was originally planning to get a lot of crystals in the final room...then I found the "exiting the level" trick, so I had to shift the burden to 2-6, 3-2, and 3-3. Ah well. Anyways, if you don't land on at least one platform on the way down you'll die from falling too far before reaching the bottom.

3-1 Lights, Camel, Action: Awww yeah the puns are back. Since the gold key is on the way here, I don't skip it like I do in the any%, which is sad. I use my tail attack to very slightly extend my hitbox to grab that one color crystal - this is the only point in the game I found where the very, very small collision boost was useful. Pretty interesting level all around.

3-2: Mud Pit Mania: Nobody likes this level; it is so bad. However, it does allow for some cool tricks. And it showcases how terrible swimming physics are: simply by looking down I can nab the gobbo out of the cage without even opening it!

3-3: Goin' Underground: I don't understand this level name - I was already underground in the last level. That wall jump in the room after the red color crystal saves like 20 seconds...the switch game in that room is really dumb. I get plenty of crystals for free from the ghost race, which is always nice.

3-B1: The Deadly Tank of Neptuna: Since underwater levels are so fun, why not have an entire level underwater! What a terrible idea. The ceiling in the second room is really glitchy and can be used for some minor zips.

3-S1: Arabian Heights: Shame all those free crystals in the second room go to waste. Nothing much to say here except there are way too many invisible walls in this level.

3-4: Sand and Freedom: After hexing in changes to earlier levels, I lost over a second in this level. Before, the tornado would grab me almost immediately after pounding, cancelling the delay time...now it comes a bit later. Unfortunate, but what can you do? Ghost race is even more one-sided than usual here.

3-5: Leap of Faith: Really fun platforming level, though hover makes it way simpler. I finally get 100 crystals so I get an extra life just in time for when I need it in 3-6. I feel like there was something else to mention here, but I can't think of what. Oh well.

3-6: Life's a Beach: LOL this level name. I take a weird route to the box in the left wing so that the dantini doesn't see me too early and kill me while I'm pounding the box. Unfortunately, because of his head turning cycles, this means I can't get him to hit me any earlier than he does. Rest of the level is pretty straight forward if I remember correctly. I finally get down to 0 lives here, just before a ton of lives in the next five levels. Also, why does world 3 have no color crystal skips while the other worlds each have 2-3?

3-B2: Cactus Jack's Ranch: This guy has really funky AI, that can be messed with using tail attacks at the right frames. Also, apparently Croc has watched some SM64 and learned how to BLJ (it only works in this room because of the weird wall design, if you are wondering why I don't use it elsewhere).

4-1: The Tower of Power: I appear to select 3-6, and then I end up here. Surprise I guess. Staircases in this world are bounded by invisible walls - I stand on top of one of those invisible walls in the fourth room.

3-S2: Defeato Burrito: Okay, the level name for this level really has no relation to the stage itself. Finally, the last swimming stage in this game. After respawning from death underwater, you are forced to swim a bit: I look down in order to prevent myself from moving far forward and having to do it again in reverse.

4-2: Hassle in the Castle: Staircases, and lots of them. They can be tough to optimize sometimes, but checking position addresses can really help here. The color crystal skip here navegates through a field of invisible walls, and unfortunately only saves a few seconds.

4-3: Dungeon of Defright: Minigames!!!! So much playaround here, it was hard to keep thinking of new stuff to do. I take damage in the cauldron minigame firstly for wtf value, and secondly to allow me to deathwarp in the last room. You can hit the pump slightly faster in the 3-door room, but doing so causes the balloon not to inflate as much with each compression, and is overall slower. The hearts in the penultimate room are obviously very fast, but I don't need any more than the first.

4-B1: Fosley's Freaky Donut: The angle you send the dynamite back is unfortunately luck based. Other than that, pretty standard boss level.

4-4: Ballistic Meg's Fairway: I do this level instead of 4-S1 now for no real reason. Croc is a few frames too slow to hit Ballistic Meg after the gobbo in the first room, so he can't get the fast deathwarp to the start (and falling makes deathwarping not faster). Rest of the level is pretty self explanatory I think. You can actually do the color crystal skip here without even hovering: just jump from where the gong at the right angle and you can pass through the wall to the loading zone.

4-S1: Smash And See: The gist of this level is that you pound boxes to get invincible dantinis to fall to their demise. Killing them all in a room nets you the gold key. With hovering, I can skip all of this and just hover to loading zones from the side instead.

4-5: Swipe Swiftly's Wicked Ride: The elevator in the first room moves very slowly downwards. I fall as soon as I can without dieing upon reaching the bottom. In the second room, I die in order to set up another room-entering fall. When you fall to enter a room, the "die from falling too much" property is nulled, so I can fall straight past the second elevator ride to the loading zone. Pretty easy color crystal skip here, even on console. The last room you normally follow a path that slowly appears in front of you...but it turns out even before the platforms appear they are solid. So instead I just hover to the end.

4-6: Panic at Platform Pete's Lair: Really fun and cool looking level. After the first few rooms, I assume the developers assumed you were trained to not jump on spikes. From the fourth room onwards, many of the spikes aren't even programmed to hurt you! I use this to my advantage a few times. I still don't understand why the walls are solid around the final color crystal door, and it is unfortunate they are. I don't know how they managed to patch this one up but not the equally obvious Ballistic Meg's Fairway. This is the last gobbo collection level.

4-B2: Baron Dante's Funky Inferno: Dante's Inferno, yes more puns!!! Long boss fight, but it should be entertaining. I spent a long time trying to skip the first credits to no avail, so unfortunately you'll have to sit through them (or skip ahead in the video).

4-S2: Jailhouse Croc: This is pretty much the easiest level in the game. I don't know what it is doing as the final jigsaw level. Collecting the last jigsaw piece unlocks the secret world.

5-1: And So the Adventure Returns: Wouldn't this title be more fitting for 4-S2? Anyways, the main difficulty of this level was enemy dodging, though most of the times the optimal route automatically dodges them. If you couldn't tell, world 5 consists of variations of rooms from previous worlds with a ton more enemies added in.

5-2: Diet Brrrrr: The enemy dodging here required a bit more effort, especially in the penultimate room. Still a fairly straightforward level.

5-3: Trial on the Nile: Figuring out the best places to take damage instead of trying to dodge enemies was a bit tricky. Like all world five levels, pretty straightforward other than that.

5-4: Crox Interactive: Dude, when will game designers learn to not put exits of rooms right next to their entrances? Room 4 shows why. Room 5 required some effort to dodge the dumb fast moving platforms that drag you in the wrong direction, but again nothing here was too bad.

5-B: Secret Sentinel: Worst final boss ever? This fight is trivial, tool assistance or not. Hit all four gongs to win, that is all there is to it. Until I spent a while testing random stuff in this fight I never even realized the boss had an attack (after a while of not hitting a gong he throws energy at you). This and the whole fifth world were a dissapointing end to this run, but such is the game. I get a "100% Complete" message and get to watch the credits agian, fun.

As you see at the end of the credits, Croc will return. I do hope to eventually do Croc 2, but that won't be my next project. Thanks for watching and I apologize for writing this mega-essay of run comments.


Dooty: You can see if a TASer is for real on those long runs; if the quality drops near the end of the run then you can say he's not. But that's not the case here, you kept the run at a really high standard throughout; on the minigames, health and death management, route planning, optimizations and of course entertainment, so, congratulations on another accepted run RingRush!

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