Nearly 8 years ago Spezzafer first attempted make this Tool Assisted Speedrun, but despite his efforts, his WIP was eventually discontinued at the start of level 4-3. However, his work was not in vain: his action-packed, exciting run showed what great potential the game had and inspired new TASers to give this run a try. In 2009, Baxter and NxCy picked up the project from scratch. After reaching level 3-3, walljumping was discovered, obsoleting most of the run. At the same time, a plethora of new tricks had been found for the earlier levels, ultimately tempting us to take the run back to 1-6 for a second version. Progress was fairly slow, but the pace picked up significantly when Carl Sagan joined the team while we were redoing level 2-2. After years of hard work, we finally managed to finish this project. We used well over a million rerecords for the making of this movie. This is not accurately reflected in the 868307 rerecords attached to the movie file as many rerecords are lost when doing tests, planning routes, and due to working on the TAS with multiple people in general, as only the fastest version is taken. The actual number of rerecords could be as high as twice the number that is shown. These rerecords were not only used for optimizing the TAS as much as possible, but also to make it as entertaining as possible. A hidden help box in 3-2 has the following message: "We, the mario team poured our hearts and souls into creating this game for your entertainment. It is full of secrets.” (
) We wanted to make a TAS that fully shows off all of the excitement, color, and complexity that Yoshi's Island has to offer, and hope everyone enjoys watching!
If Yoshi moves faster than 3 pixels on a frame while extremely close to a wall, it is possible to move far enough into the wall for the game to put Yoshi as ‘standing on the ground’ for a frame. On this frame you can jump. Normal running speeds are too slow for this to occur (~760 subpixels per frame), but by pressing left for a frame you can get a speed boost for a frame, usually to around ~800 subpixels/frame.By carefully controlling Yoshi’s speed, you can make the frame with the high speed occur very close to the wall and get the trick. Walljumps are also only possible at ‘tile’ boundaries, i.e. every 16 pixels vertically. It is possible to chain many wall jumps by fluttering in between consecutive ones. You have to move far enough away from the wall to be able to accelerate back to a speed higher than your average running speed, and fluttering preserves height during this motion.
Shooting Through Walls
If an egg is fired on the walljump frame (traveling >3 pixels into the wall), it can pass through a one-block thick wall. This generally only works from the right side of the wall (as in 2-2, 4-E, and elsewhere), but for objects very near to the wall it still works from the left side (as in 3-7). An egg can however not completely go through the wall when shot from the left side of a wall.
When you start an eggshot, Yoshi’s aiming cursor cycles through a predetermined set of values. When starting at the bottom, it starts from the value 1024 and goes up by steps of 192 until it reaches the highest value of 11776. If you start aiming while pressing up, you will start at 11776 and the angle goes down by steps of 192. However, when going down, after reaching 1024,it keeps going down all the way to 0. After reaching 0, it goes up in steps of 192 again, but 1024 is not in the table of 192, so this time, the cycle will go through a completely different set of angles. These angles, which are accessed only by letting the angle run down from the highest angle to 0 are called the special angles. Thus the lowest possible egg angle, and other different angles, are only achievable using this method.
If Yoshi jumps and eats a rotating arrow lift on the same frame, then Yoshi will warp on top of it when the arrow lift is spit out, as long as Yoshi is directly underneath it. Note that jumping and eating the lift on the same frame is only possible when the lift has certain angles, which is why a small wait is sometimes required before this glitch is pulled off. This glitch can be used to gain vertical distance quickly in areas with arrow lifts, such as 2-8, 4-4, and 5-8.
Normally, when you push down to enter a vertical pipe, Yoshi does an animation showing him climbing into the pipe, and after that animation is done the next screen loads. If you push down + jump on the same frame, Yoshi still goes down the pipe, but this animation is skipped, saving just under 30 frames. Note that this glitch also works for the non-pipe room transitions in level 4-E. This is also the glitch that causes Yoshi to warp back to level 1-1. Since we use the restriction of not warping back to 1-1 in this TAS, we avoid doing the pipeglitch at pipes where doing the glitch results in going back to 1-1.
There are many one-way gates in Yoshi’s Island that can be opened backwards through various means. A horizontal gate with a ceiling can be opened with an egg angled upwards if fired on the right frame. Additionally, any horizontal gate can be opened when certain enemies are spit into the gate. Finally, vertical gates can be opened by falling ‘dead’ eggs: after an egg ricochets a 4th time, it becomes untonguable and falls offscreen. It can however still push gates open like this, as is done in 2-1.
Yoshi is unable to be hit for a few frames after bouncing off of a koopa shell. This is exploited to get around the spike balls in 4-8.
The on-screen sprite limit is both a blessing and a curse in Yoshi’s Island. Because there are so many sprites that are easy to create such as stars, it is very easy to hit the sprite limit and cause new sprites to despawn. This is used in many places throughout the run to intentionally despawn enemies or objects that might slow Yoshi down, and also must be avoided in certain areas to prevent necessary items from despawning, i.e. 3-E. A red coin that despawned in level 1-5 was the reason why over half of the level had to be redone.
By varying the number of frames jump is held and the delay before repressing jump, flutters can be significantly altered to be quicker or higher. There are many locations throughout the game that are just a few pixels out of each. Repeated fluttering is one method of many that can be used to gain enough height to access these areas.
Normally, enemies spit at walls simply bounce off and Yoshi is unable to bounce off of them. However, if spit into the wall with the right speed/position, they catch the edge like a walljump and can be bounced on. This can be used to gain large amounts of vertical distance.
Slope Speed Change
When run on, slopes in general tend to slow Yoshi down. By just pressing left or right, Yoshi’s acceleration is always a multiple of 8 subpixels/frame^2. When holding one direction for a long time, Yoshi’s maximum speed is 760 on average, as it is cut off when going over 3 pixels per frame, which is 768 subpixels per frame. Slopes can however slow Yoshi down by numbers that do no have to be a multiple of 8, which means that Yoshi’s average speed when jumping off a slope can reach a value as high as 767 subpixels per frame. At this speed, you save about a frame every 100 frames compared to just moving at 760 subpixels/frame.
Most sprites despawn quickly when offscreen, and in the case of flowers, they don’t load off screen at all. This often makes camera positioning very important for collecting coins and flowers. Additionally, certain undesirable sprites can be left off screen intentionally to avoid having to deal with them, such as falling rocks or the trigger which causes a room to autoscroll like the third room of level 6-5 or level 1-E.
When pressing up long enough, Yoshi will look upwards and the screen position scrolls upwards a bit. When Yoshi jumps during the scrolling of the screen, Yoshi will keep its position relative to the screen, meaning that a good portion above Yoshi is revealed. This for instance enables you to spawn and shoot the red coins in the 1-7 cloud room, and avoid having to use the beanstalk to access these coins.
Tonguing Through Walls
Yoshi’s tongue can naturally pass through many walls and objects. This can be used to acquire items, such as the key in 6-6, through the wall.
When Yoshi’s tongue hits a wall, it can cause him to come to an immediate stop. This is quite often the fastest way to turn around, as simply holding the opposite direction only gradually slows Yoshi down.
Facing Backwards Without Losing Time
The input <>>< can be used to face backwards without losing any time. This is used when an egg needs to be shot backwards, or when juggling eggs.
Red Coin Duplication
Flying shyguys carrying red coins can be used to duplicate red coins. This trick only works on the flyguys that stay on the screen, not the ones that fly in and leave. For it to work, you need to do the following: tongue the shyguy without picking up the red coin, spit out the shyguy so that it rolls offscreen, out of sight. Go to the side so that the place where the shyguy was flying in the first place is offscreen. When you turn back, a new shyguy, holding a red coin will have spawned, allowing you to pick up the same red coin again. Note that this trick does not work if you pick up the red coin beforehand or if you swallow or destroy the shyguy. Because the red coin on the ground will disappear after a short while, it is not possible to do this trick as often as you like on a single red coin carrying shyguy. Also note that it takes a bit of time to set up the duplication, and thus it is generally only used when a red coin or two would require going into an entirely separate room in the level. As mentioned before, obtaining more than 20 red coins does not score you any extra points when you finish the level. If you collect 20 or more red coins in a level you are simply awarded with 20 points.
Quick Ground Pound
Objects such as crates and posts can be ground pounded slightly faster by being as close to the object as possible when initiating the ground pound. The groundpound hits while Yoshi is still spinning around.
Offscreen Pot Break
The pot which contains a key in 1-4 can be broken immediately by an offscreen eggshot. This then causes the key to fly in the direction Yoshi is facing. Unfortunately, the same trick does not work on the 2-8 pot.
Fondly named after its inventor, the Baxter is a method of flinging eggs over the goal ring to be picked up by the next Yoshi. This can also be pulled off when playing the game in real time, but it requires some skill. Because of this, the trick became a popular way of showing off skill during a speedrun, and it gained popularity. The speedrunner Trihex started calling the trick a “Baxter”, which is the name it is now commonly known by. It spawned a series of useful tricks mentioned below.
Keys, like eggs, can be flung over a goal ring to the next Yoshi. This allows you to start the next level with a key and save the time to pick up the key in that level. In this TAS, this is only done in 2-3, as the requirements are quite specific: since you have to bring the key beyond the goal ring without collecting it (if you collected it, the key will vanish when hitting the goal ring), the key must be in the last room of the level. It is obviously also a requirement that a key is needed in the next level and that taking the key with you in this last room takes less time than actually collecting it in the next level. The latter was, for instance, not the case for taking a key from 4-7 in to 4-8.
Stars can also be collected by the next Yoshi after beating a level. This makes certain stars accessible that would be otherwise impossible to obtain quickly such as the stars from the final flower in level 3-E.
It is also possible to take Huffin Puffins (colloquially known as chickens) with you from one level to the next. If you aim a chicken, pushing Y will cancel your aiming. When this is done just before hitting the goal ring, it is possible that baby mario will take it to the next Yoshi like a regular egg. Normally, they fly away upon hitting the goal ring. Because these chickens are not meant to be taken to different levels, they are given random sprites in levels where they do not belong.
Autoscroll Trigger Skip
There are several autoscroll triggers that can be skipped. 1-E is normally a fairly long autoscroller. However, walljumping up the left wall and then bouncing across the flying bats lets Yoshi skip the trigger to begin the autoscroll, and complete the level at full speed. This same principle applies to the ending room of 6-5, but unfortunately was not possible for levels that begin with the autoscroll activated, as in 1-5, 5-6, and the first two rooms of 6-5.
Melon Bug Boost
Melon bugs have the interesting property of setting Yoshi’s speed to their own when Yoshi collides with one. If Yoshi spits out a melon bug, it will go faster than normal maximum movement speed. If he then collides with the bug, he will get this speed boost. If Yoshi quickly grabs the bug again he can then spit it out even faster. This can be repeated over and over to achieve incredibly high speeds, allowing Yoshi to pass through walls as in 4-5.
Enemy Height Boost
If Yoshi barely jumps over an enemy without colliding with it, it is possible to gain a few pixels of height because the game forces Yoshi up slightly. Using this height boost off a fallow spring in 4-3 allowed us to gain enough height for a walljump.
Moving Platform Jump
Moving platforms add to Yoshi’s speed up to a certain amount in the direction they are moving. This means that you can jump really high off of platforms moving vertically, and move really fast when jumping off of horizontal platforms. The maximum speed obtainable from a red platform is around 2,000 subpixels/frame (almost 3 times normal max speed).
Train Track Glitch
If the train lands directly on the starting tracks while holding left or right, it is possible to glitch off of the tracks. Since the tracks confine the train, it can be faster to do this, as in 2-8 and 5-8.
Yoshi’s hitbox becomes smaller when he ducks. Thus, if you duck while falling off of a ledge, it is possible to pass underneath a ceiling more quickly than would otherwise be possible.
Holding B slows Yoshi’s descent up to the maximum fall speed. This allows extra long jumps to be made if held after fluttering (or canceling a flutter).
Bottom of The Goal Ring
If Yoshi hits the bottom of the goal ring, the level ends a few frames sooner as it takes less time for the next Yoshi to grab baby mario and exit the screen.
Ground Pound Door Entry
Yoshi must be touching the ground in order to enter a door. When jumping up from below, ground pounding to touch the floor allows Yoshi to enter a door more quickly.
Carrying More than 6 Eggs
Normally Yoshi can only carry at most 6 eggs. If Yoshi is aiming an egg, it does not count to his total, and so he may pick up a new egg and have 6 in reserve as well as the one currently being aimed. If the shot is cancelled an egg is lost, however. Additionally, eggs/enemies may be juggled across a level and eaten/collected at a later point when we have more room to carry eggs.
The most important trick in Yoshi’s Island: juggling eggs and enemies and doing tons of crazy eggshots. This tantalizes Trihex into trying to incorporate ever-increasingly ridiculous swag in real time, thus ruining his speedruns.
Here we present the more notable moments in each level. We will often refer to particular tricks or glitches in this section. For a detailed explanation of these tricks, please see the “Tricks, glitches and techniques”-section of this submission text. A more in-depth, level by level analysis will be done in the form of an audio commentary, which will be found here later.
1-1: Make Eggs, Throw Eggs
A precise extended flutter followed by a perfect flutter can be done from the shy guy on the rock to reach the top area at the start of the level. We have to wait a little bit for him to walk to the top of the rock to get enough height. Creating red eggs and using them for stars is generally the fastest way to obtain 30 stars, as it allows us to skip clouds and middle rings. This will be seen throughout the run, but on 1-1 in particular we are able to skip the secret cloud at the cliff climbing section.
1-2: Watch Out Below!
A straightforward level. We skip the helicopter by using some flutters. This is the first level where we do the pipeglitch, which skips the animation of Yoshi going in to the pipe, saving nearly half a second.
1-3: The Cave of Chomp Rock
A technical level that demonstrates the use of eggs to pick up flowers and red coins at the very edge of the screen. A lot of things in this game are collected out of sight; be sure to listen out for the sound of red coins and flowers. In general if you see a random shot fly off into the void it’s to collect flowers/coins.
1-4: Burt the Bashful's Fort
In the first room of this level, we take a total of 7 eggs with us. Yoshi can only carry 6 eggs; a 7th egg is juggled so that we can pick it up later when an egg slot frees up. We shoot the pot off-screen to break it early. The key will fly in the direction Yoshi is facing, so we look to the left as it breaks.
1-5: Hop! Hop! Donut Lifts
The first autoscroller of the run. Due to a sprite overload, a red coin near the beginning despawned, which we only noticed later on in the level, meaning we had to redo most of the level. We saved a few frames by having a good x-position at the end of the level, but other than that there is not much to say as far as speed goes. We did spent a lot of time trying to make this level as entertaining as possible.
1-6: Shy Guys on Stilts
The first door in this level can be opened sooner by the use of a ground pound. It is faster to shoot the red coins after finishing the mole section, rather than picking them up as the mole. We collect a bunch of extra eggs in this level. These are all needed to speed up 1-7 and 1-8. We needed a lot of red eggs going into level 1-7 in order to skip the middle ring, which ultimately lead to the discovery of the so-called Baxter shot, where an egg is juggled past the goal ring and collected by the next Yoshi. In general, a lot of time was spent finding the fastest route across multiple levels taking into account the number of eggs available, their color, the number of stars, etc.
1-7: Touch Fuzzy, Get Dizzy
A lot happens in this level in a short period of time. We use a lot of red eggs to get 30 stars, skipping the middle ring. Collecting the melon also saves some eggs. In the sky room we shoot all the red coins from the ground. Looking up is required to scroll the camera up far enough so that the coins may be hit. Shooting eggs from specific positions at a precise angle allowed us to collect the 4 red coins by only using 2 eggs. Normally you are supposed to push a rock to unveil a beanstalk, which you then use to climb up to the clouds.
1-8: Salvo the Slime's Castle
Wall jumps allow us to navigate the water room very quickly. The strategy for Salvo uses one of the enemies that spawns, intended for you to refill your eggs with. Spitting this enemy directly into Salvo enabled us to continuously damage the boss, which results in a very fast kill.
2-1: Visit Koopa and Para-Koopa
A vertical gatehack completely skips the baby mario section. We ride Poochy briefly as he runs faster than Yoshi. This level features a wrong warp that puts you further ahead in the same level. We use a pipeglitch after the Poochy room to warp straight into the autoscroller. It is possible to do a continuous flutter underneath a falling block. Near the end we use this to preserve an extended flutter underneath a block to stay low enough to shoot the flower, and then used the extended flutter to climb up the block.
2-2: The Baseball Boys
By using a combination of wall jumps and extended flutters we managed to climb the first part of this level very fast. The second room features the first use of shooting through walls, which allowed us to skip the leftmost part of that room. With a sequence of very precise shots it is possible to shoot all the red coins in the mole area, completely skipping the mole.
2-3: What's Gusty Taste Like?
A mostly straightforward level, with a lot of interesting egg shots to keep things going at full speed. It is faster to avoid picking up the Baby Mario Star. The final room also features the sole key Baxter of the run. We collect this key by tonguing it through a wall.
2-4: The Bigger Boo's Fort
Having the key from 2-3 saves a huge amount of time, as it skips a large detour necessary to get the intended key. We also use a gatehack to skip the intended detour of a later room.
2-5: Watch Out for Lakitu
This is an action-packed level with many enemies lying around to play with. Ground pounding into the shell cancels the otherwise inescapable pounding animation, allowing us to break the crate above the pit rather than pushing it forward first. With a long chain of walljumps we completely skip having to use the train. The final room is a great example of how the TAS can run through a complicated section and collect everything without losing much time.
2-6: The Cave of the Mystery Maze
A big trick early on here involves throwing an egg down and slowly following it. The egg flies past where a gate normally exists, as we delay scrolling the camera to spawn the gate after the egg has gone by it. The egg then picks up the red coins behind the gate. This saves a very large amount of time, and this gate cannot be gatehacked, as there is no ceiling to do the typical egg shot at. Note that egg shots through a 1-tile thick wall only work from the right side to the left, which means that the red coins at the top left of the large cave room have to be collected using the intended method.
2-7: Lakitu's Wall
The first use of red coin duplication in the run appears early on here and it saves a lot of time. We pick up 2 extra red coins to skip the ones in the pole near the 2nd flower, and a huge pole later on. There are red coins inside the area the huge pole encloses, so we shoot these through the pole on the right side. We also despawn the cannons early on to be able to ground pound the poles they guard uninterrupted. In the final room we skip the car by climbing on top of the help box. We also spent a lot of time planning the egg route for this level, as many eggs are needed in 2-8.
2-8: The Potted Ghost's Castle
In the first room, we jump off moving platform on the first frame, which provides a boost in the y-speed, allowing us to jump over the middle ring. Arrow teleportation massively speeds up the large spike room in this castle. This level also features one of the run’s 2 train tricks. On the way back from the train room we warp at the lower pipe rather than entering the normal pipe. This is another case where a wrong warp puts you further ahead in the same level. We enter the vase room with the largest number of eggs possible to shoot the vase with, as this is much faster than just pushing it. More arrow teleportation near the end gives this level a quick finish. In the boss we walljump over and push him from the right side, which is significantly faster than the intended method. When pushing him to the left, Yoshi slowly moves through the pot and will eventually be ejected to the left. To avoid this we occasionally duck.
3-1: Welcome to Monkey World!
We manipulated a monkey to serve as a platform at the start of the vertical climb in the second room. Walljumping also speeds up the climb quite a bit. Taking damage at the end of the level is equally fast as ducking, so naturally, we went with taking damage.
3-2: Jungle Rhythm...
Walljumping and shooting through walls greatly help the vertical part of this level and turned this relatively short stage into a big time saver. Due to lack of things to shoot for stars in this level, we had to end this level with a star Baxter which, besides just looking nice, was also the best strategy for this level.
3-3: Nep-Enut's Domain
It is actually rather tricky to collect the submarine bubble when falling down the hole. Using a ducking fall and the right acceleration enabled us to collect it this way. It is faster to take damage during the submarine section than to wait for the rotating blade to pass. The eggshot through a narrow opening above the water was one of the hardest eggshots in the entire game to get while minimizing slowdown. It took many hours to get.
3-4: Prince Froggy's Fort
There is an unavoidable middle ring in the final room of this level, meaning it is ideal to get as many stars as possible before touching it, to minimise the ring time. Having 29 stars instead of 30 is only a single frame slower; often less than or equal to the cost of manipulating a final star to be collectible anyway. The damage the boss takes per hit varies greatly, and with some careful control we managed to beat him in only 5 hits.
3-5: Jammin' Through the Trees
Not a lot to say here. This level is short but sweet.
3-6: The Cave of Harry Hedgehog
Shooting through walls skips the mole entirely, saving lots of time. The shot to collect all red coins is very precise, which is why this was the place where we discovered special angles. We didn’t end up using them here though. For 1 frame you can jump off a falling p-switch without activating it. In the secret room we use this to get enough height to shoot the flower.
3-7: Monkeys' Favorite Lake
We pick up the flower in the enclosure in the 2nd room with a wall shot. Eggs won’t go through walls when moving to the right, but they seem to go far enough to pick up the flower, which itself is sitting slightly inside the wall.
3-8: Naval Piranha's Castle
Simply by slowing down enough, it is possible to pass through the fish in the first room without being eaten. Shooting the big ghosts just off-screen hits them while they’re still growing. By doing this it’s possible to make them small enough to jump over in just 1 shot. Some walljumps avoid having to enter the water near the end. At the boss we use the famous quick kill easter egg.
4-1: GO! GO! MARIO!!
It is very well hidden, but if you pay close attention, you will notice that a red coin is duplicated in this level. This red coin is used to skip the Baby Mario section of this level. Also note how we use a bullet to get a big vertical as a small timesaver.
4-2: The Cave of the Lakitus
We use some very precise egg shots to avoid having to go up to the flower near the POW-block. Also note that a lakitu is spit off-screen in order to avoid a sprite overload which caused a red coin to despawn. We saved time in the falling room by using special angles and doing a ground pound when possible. Near the end, both arrows are hit roughly at the same time so that the egg’s path after hitting an arrow is only shown once.
4-3: Don't Look Back!
This level starts out by aiming an egg for quite some time, which is done to carry 7 eggs around. In the helicopter section, we use walljumps to gain enough height to spawn and shoot the red coins, skipping the helicopter. It is possible to shoot some of the red coins in this room from outside the room, through the wall, but unfortunately not all of them. With a lot of planning, we managed to get enough stars from shooting enemies to avoid having to use the middle ring.
4-4: Marching Milde's Fort
By using walljumps, we avoid having to watch the staircloud animations. This level required quite a bit of planning, since the four keys can be obtained in any order. The amount of eggs was a big factor in the order we choose as you cannot carry as many eggs when you are also carrying around the keys. In this level a large number of previously mentioned tricks are all used in quick succession, such as arrow teleports, walljumps, shots through walls and so on. The boss is shot across the room to minimize the number of ground pounds needed.
4-5: Chomp Rock Zone
An entire room is skipped by duplicating red coins. Then this level takes a very different turn from other Yoshi’s Island levels. A trick was discovered by ArneTheGreat to use melon bugs to achieve high speeds (see trick section for details). This was used to pass through walls and move through the end of the first room very quickly. Notice at the very end, the melon bug bounces back and knocks Yoshi into the wall, allowing for a walljump up to the final area. It is faster to use a chomp rock trick to reach the end of the second room, but unfortunately we cannot get enough stars while doing it, so it was not used in the end. To collect the final flower, an egg is first through to stun the pitcher, keeping him out of the way for a second egg to hit the flower.
4-6: Lake Shore Paradise
A wallshot at the start skips having to swim to get access to a coin. This level duplicates a lot of red coins to skip an entire cave room just before the final room. At the end, a star baxter is used to collect the final two stars.
4-7: Ride Like the Wind
Shells, unlike other things in the game, can be bounced on after ricocheted off of a wall. This, in conjunction with walljumps, are used to skip directly over the top of the level in the first room. We had a lot of difficulty managing all of the stars in this level, while still getting enough eggs. Eventually, we managed to skip the middle ring and while having enough eggs to collect everything else. An eggshot opens the horizontal gate from behind at the start of the last room, and the huffin puffin is transferred to the next Yoshi for use in 4-8.
4-8: Hookbill the Koopa's Castle
The spike balls are passed through using the invincibility frames granted by bouncing off of a koopa shell. The last one is respawned favorably so that Yoshi can barely squeak by under it. We skip several staircases in the 2nd room using offscreen eggshots that collect two red coins. Normally a middle ring blocks the crate containing the key, but we spawn a lot of stars to despawn the middle ring. The boss was the reason we brought the chicken from 4-7. Instead of having to fire multiple eggs at him to make him fall on his back, the chicken makes this happen immediately.
This level features a bunch of red coin duplication to skip 2 side rooms. There’s a trick near the end of the first room where we keep the camera quite low as we climb up. This prevents a chomp rock from spawning too soon and blocking our path. An enemy wall spit is also used in the 2nd room to climb the area faster.
5-2: Ride the Ski Lifts
Interestingly, there is an egg hidden on top of a single piece of foam above the screen at the very start of the level. A ground pound makes the egg spout give many eggs at once, which was needed as there are very few enemies to eat in this level. Near the end, we turn around instantly by falling into the side of the penguin. Finally, a very precise flutter allows us to reach the final penguin sooner.
5-3: Danger - Icy Conditions Ahead
At the start of this level, we use a big flutter in combination with a walljump to go over the top of the screen, avoiding fluttering over the water. Due to the lack of things to shoot, we have to take the middle ring in this level. Using it turns the two enemies into the final two required stars. Then there is lots of skiing, which is optimized solely by jumping on the right frames.
5-4: Sluggy the Unshaven's Fort
We use a combination of walljumps and extended flutters to navigate this castle very quickly. Shooting the blue spikes saves time at the cost of some eggs, as otherwise we would have to flutter over them. One of the two big tricks in this level is skipping the middle floor entirely at the section with the staircases. Normally you are supposed to take a fairly long detour and pick up 2 red coins, but we get these by duplicating red coins in the long ghost room. After fluttering up to the top floor, we keep the screen low with perfect jumps to prevent an otherwise unavoidable middle ring from spawning. The second big trick in this level is a famous skip, which involves fluttering through the long ghost platform room instead of riding on the ghost. It is during this that we perform the red coin duplication by using a bat to climb up to the shy guys and breaking through the spike wall to scroll the screen enough for the duplication to work. Shooting the boss just off-screen allows us to damage him with a single shot, which makes the first hit faster. After every hit the boss is invincible for a certain period of time, so it doesn’t really matter how we do the next 3 hits.
5-5: Goonie Rides!
By jumping across the goonies in the 2nd room, we are able to skip using the helicopter. This part was tricky to navigate, and at one point we had to land on a falling goonie that we had shot to gain enough height. In the final room we use a series of wall jumps to climb up to the end faster. As we complete the final section of the part rather quickly, it takes a while for the red switch timer to run down, even after the goal ring.
5-6: Welcome to Cloud World
During the autoscroller, we managed to do a seven-egg juggle -- the largest number of eggs juggled in any of the current Yoshi’s Island TAS’s. In the last room, a spinning spiked platform is used to smack Yoshi really high off screen, but he takes no damage because it is off screen. Gusties are used at the end of the level to bounce off of and prevent the need to flutter. A chicken baxter is done at the end to take a chicken into 5-7.
5-7: Shifting Platforms Ahead
Penguins can be spit into the wall and bounced off of repeatedly. This is the only level in the game with 6 flowers. Doing a first frame jump on vertical red platforms can give a huge vertical boost. The extra flower is hidden way off screen, and is obtained by firing an egg into the sky. Shooting this somewhat hidden flower allows us to skip a room. At the end of the level, a tricky eggshot that passes through a flower because it has not yet loaded is used to get the red coins in the back, then ricochet back into the now-loaded flower.
5-8: Raphael the Raven's Castle
This level has quite a few tricky eggshots, including a ricochet for the first flower, and a wallshot for the second flower and some red coins. It required extensive luck manipulation to get the two stars from the third flower, as well as a tricky eggshot that hits the far left side of the flower. Arrow teleportation is used in the block break room, and quite a lot in the next room as well. A glitch to move off of the train tracks is used in the train room, which allows you to complete the section in only one train cooldown instead of having to grab another train bubble. The boss’s movement patterns can be manipulated, so that he moves as soon as possible and in a favorable direction, which avoids him using his slow attacks.
6-1: Scary Skeleton Goonies!
Due to an unavoidable middle ring in the second room, we had to collect as close to 30 stars in the first room as possible to minimize slowdown. In the second room, the lower red coins can be collected with an eggshot that passes through the crate. At the very end, the flying green enemies, like koopa shells, can be bounced off of immediately after hitting a wall, unlike most enemies. This prevents the need to flutter.
6-2: The Cave of the Bandits
A very precise eggshot is used to collect the flower in the second room. Baby mario walljumps are a lot easier than normal walljumps because he moves faster, and were used to skip a portion of the final room.
6-3: Beware the Spinning Logs
The spinning logs can be used to gain a lot of height, but it is only worthwhile if the alternative would be fluttering, as they do slow Yoshi down briefly. It was very difficult to manipulate all of the stars and shyguys to move correctly at the end of the level, as even minor changes cause shyguys’ movement patterns to change.
6-4: Tap-Tap the Red Nose's Fort
It is faster to briefly backtrack and go over the top of the level than to wait for the sliding columns at the end of the first room. There is usually a second key needed to complete this level, but a single big flutter is used to bypass the locked pipe. Fluttering over the lava is faster than taking the log of shame. Finally, the boss is knocked into the lava really quickly due to some crazy egg ricochets (recommend watching with slowdown).
6-5: The Very Loooooong Cave
Make sure to unmute your sound if it’s muted, as some of the level plays along with the music. The autoscroller section is just messing around as it can’t be sped up. The very last room is usually an autoscroller, but this is skipped by doing a few jumps on the first frame possible, which keeps the screen from scrolling and loading the trigger for the autoscrolling.
6-6: The Deep, Underground Maze
The first key is grabbed through the wall by freezing Yoshi’s tongue at maximum extension, which allows it to freely pass through walls. The rooms are done out of order due to the use of a walljump at the end to skip having to spawn a slow platform from a cloud. An enemy spit can be used to open gates backwards when eggs won’t work.
6-7: KEEP MOVING!!!!
The rotating platforms can be spawned faster by scrolling the screen up to them as soon as possible. This is accomplished by the long sequence of jumps at the beginning, and looking up later on. In the second room, the slow green autoscrolling platform is skipped, first by blasting through the foam with some tricky eggshots, and then walljumping up the vertical climb. Baby mario is skipped because we need to collect a flower from a cloud using eggs, and baby mario can’t fire eggs. Then, numerous gatehacks are used to reach the exit as fast as possible.
6-8: King Bowser's Castle
Door 4 is the fastest door at the start. Since kamek’s magic can turn wall tiles into enemies, we use that to obtain 30 stars during the autoscroller. Bouncing on baby bowser’s head prevents him from jumping, letting him take damage from a ground pound quicker. For final bowser, we found that hitting him with two eggs at once is the fastest strategy. Pause + select can be used to exit out of any level that has already been completed. At the very end, the game saves right as bowser explodes. If you pause the game just before that and then cancel it, for a few frames after the explosion it is possible to press select to end the level, as it occurs after the level has been saved. This is much faster than resetting the game to get to the extra levels.
In order to minimize overworld movement time, the extra levels are done last rather than at the end of every world. When you beat a world, the game puts you straight into the next world, meaning it takes 2 transitions to go back and complete the level you just unlocked and then to return to where you were. As we are still in world 6 after finishing 6-8, doing 6-E first also saves one world transition. Apart from this, the actual order of the extra levels at the end only costs a few frames to change, and was very difficult to optimize. Because some levels require more eggs than others, whereas other levels produce eggs, we had to constantly redo the ending order as we discovered new places to use or obtain eggs.
6-E: Castles - Masterpiece Set
The long tunnel ghosts at the start normally have to be hit with an egg many times, but spitting the first shyguy into them hits them repeatedly. Slowing down briefly before the tunnel ghosts also causes them to spit an enemy out much quicker, which we used for extra eggs. In the third room, we shot a lot of blue spikes with eggs to avoid having to slow down to dodge them. A combination of walljumps and bouncing off of eggs thrown by baseball boys allowed us to skip a platform autoscroller.
1-E: Poochy Ain't Stupid
This level is normally a long autoscroller, but the autoscroll trigger can be skipped by going over the first area. We look up at the start of this level in order to scroll the screen upward. This screen scroll carries over into all of the walljumps, allowing the bats to spawn further up. Bat positioning is highly random, with any movement or action altering their height, and had to be extensively manipulated to get the most desirable patterns.
2-E: Hit That Switch!!
While the intended route for this level involves riding around a lot of platforms, we are able to skip most of that by doing some fluttering after getting a big jump off of the first platform. Then, at the end of the level, we skip another set of platforms entirely. A walljump is used to go over the red blocks at the end in order to minimize fluttering.
3-E: More Monkey Madness
This is a notorious level for undesirable sprite overload, and as a result we had to scrape by with as few eggs as possible, as having extra would cause even more sprites to despawn. Even as it was, the 4th flower still despawned on us for quite a while, until we figured out the best way to remove sprites as quickly as possible in the middle section while still moving quickly. Star movement after spawning is random, so that had to be heavily manipulated to get everything we needed in this level. The final 3 stars are collected by the next Yoshi.
5-E: Kamek's Revenge
In the first screen, a key is clipped through a chomp rock by brushing the rock’s top left corner. Then, eggs are juggled up above the red switch because they would put Yoshi above 5 eggs +1 key if collected immediately. This allows us to shoot the star cloud and then use the egg aiming trick to acquire two extra eggs. At the end of the skiing section, a different helicopter cloud was collected at the start by doing a precise jump off of the final ski slope. This helicopter cloud was actually more convenient to get all the red coins as fast as possible. The baseball boys egg throws were used to collect several red coins without having to actually touch them with the helicopter. At the end of the helicopter section, we fly inside a penguin to quickly lose our upward y-speed, which lets us reach the end sooner.
4-E: The Impossible? Maze
We had been pondering what we could possibly do to shave off over a thousand frames in order to cut two hours, and 4-E seemed to have the most potential. We knew we could skip the red coins collected during the helicopter section with a wallshot, but we still needed to get to the top of the level. An inconvenient backwards water tunnel had been preventing us from making it to the top, until it was discovered that creative wall tonguing could minimize the amount the water pushed Yoshi backwards.
Unfortunately, due to the nature of the game, we are unable to end on the credits. The reward for getting 100% on an extra level in a world is a star at the top right of the title screen. Consequently, the mark of a full 100% completion of the game is having 6 stars there. We decided to end the run on this screen. Technically the last input necessary to truly have a 100% file is any button to exit the score tally screen on the final level, as the game doesn’t save you beating the level until the fadeout after the score tally. We thought ending on the title screen, displaying all 6 stars was a nicer way to finish than ending on the world 4 level select screen, and it costs very little extra time.