TASVideos

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

Submission #4509: CoolKirby's Lynx Pac-Land "warpless" in 25:18.63

Console: Atari Lynx
Game name: Pac-Land
Game version: USA/Europe
ROM filename: Pac-Land (USA, Europe).lnx
Branch: warpless
Emulator: BizHawk 1.9.1
Movie length: 25:18.63
FrameCount: 90963
Re-record count: 18292
Author's real name:
Author's nickname: CoolKirby
Submitter: CoolKirby
Submitted at: 2014-12-07 23:31:44
Text last edited at: 2014-12-16 10:47:47
Text last edited by: Spikestuff
Download: Download (9593 bytes)
Status: published
Click to view the actual publication
Submission instructions
Discuss this submission (also rating / voting)
List all submissions by this submitter
List pages on this site that refer to this submission
View submission text history
Back to the submission list
Author's comments and explanations:
Pac-Land is a classic platformer in which Pac-Man must travel across his colorful cartoon world to return lost fairies to Fairyland. This isn't as leisurely as it sounds, as his rivals, Blinky, Pinky, Inky, Clyde and Sue are out to get him along the way.


(Link to video)

About the run

  • Emulator used: BizHawk 1.9.1
  • Aims for fastest time
  • Plays until there is no new content
  • Manipulates luck
  • Forgoes warps
  • Genre: Platform

This run and the "warps" run were created in tandem with the same set of savestates, which made it much easier to incorporate new tricks in both runs. This is also why their rerecord counts are similar.

About the game

A colorful platformer with simple physics. The original arcade game was released in August 1984 (before Super Mario Bros.) and was quite popular from what I hear.

The game is divided into "trips". Each one is a trip to Fairyland to return a little lost fairy and go home with some super boots the Fairy Queen gives you.

Pac-Man can walk, run, and jump. When he is running, his jump goes twice as high, allowing him to reach platforms and ghosts that he otherwise wouldn't be able to. I always run in this TAS unless I need to slow down to land on a platform.

Colliding with anywhere but the heads of the ghosts or their babies and falling into pits, quicksand or water is a one-hit kill.

No in-game lag (according to the lag counter), however most movement in the game happens once every three frames.

Address Set #72: Pac-Land
System: Atari Lynx
Download .wch file for: BizHawk
Domain Address Data Type Signed Endian Description
System Bus 0027 Word Unsigned Little X-Position

Level-by-level comments

Trip 1

Round 1

  • It asks me where I want to start, so I start from the beginning (Trip 1) to play the full game.
  • I can't speed up the walk at the beginning of each round, but I start running as soon as it ends.
  • I don't land on the cars because though it would look cool, they're moving left, so Pac-Man would get moved left as well, costing time.
  • Pac-Pills almost always cause the level-end time countdown to take longer, even if you don't touch any ghosts.
  • I taunt the ghosts before finishing the level.
  • The ending walk is like the starting walk. Nothing I do will speed it up.

Round 2

  • More messing with the ghosts. I jump at specific times to manipulate the forest ghosts to stay out of my way.
  • I jump off of some of the ghosts' heads. This doesn't waste time because they're moving vertically and not left.

Round 3

  • Time for some platforming! These logs are tricky to land on if you're running, especially the falling ones since you need to be touching the log in order to jump.
  • As these logs are constantly rotating counterclockwise, landing or running on them usually slows Pac-Man down.
  • The springboard keeps you airborne as long as you're mashing the Right directional button. Human limitations normally make Pac-Man fall gradually, but you can keep him in the air indefinitely by autofiring the button.
  • I make it to the Queen and obtain the boots. Time to return home!

Round 4

  • The boots allow Pac-Man to jump many more times, and the level design takes that into account.
  • I jump into pits just so Pac-Man can multi-jump out.

Trip 2

Round 5

  • The pattern of cars I got includes double-decker buses which must be jumped over. Luckily, I can jump off of them without wasting time.

Round 6

  • It can be pretty tough to clear these lakes in real-time, but it's trivial in a TAS.

Round 7

  • This is kind of a tricky room. You can fall into the water and die if you drop down to the bottom platform and don't stop in time.

Round 8

  • Another fairy returned means more jumping around the screen with the super boots!

Trip 3

Round 9

  • I waste a frame at the "Ready!" screen to get a ghost pattern that won't force me to land, which would waste a few frames.
  • Baby ghosts have similar collision to the enemy ghosts, so you can run over the top of them (but not jump off).

Round 10

  • I manage to squeeze between and over ghosts a lot in this level.

Round 11

  • I have to slow down once in the cloud section so I don't fall into a pit.
  • As far as I know, you will always lose one pixel on the second-to-last set of logs, and two pixels on the last set.
  • I grab the Pac-Pill to show off its effect, since it doesn't seem to waste any time here.

Round 12

  • Not a lot of things to jump over in this one, but I do demonstrate jumping away from the water at the last possible frame.

Trip 4

Round 13

  • Pac-Man has to be at the peak of his jump to clear the double hydrants without losing time.

Round 14

  • It's faster to take the upper path and skip the first gate, even though you have to slow down a little.
  • When falling down a floor at running speed, there is a one-movement-frame (3-actual-frame) window to jump back up to the one you were on.

Round 15

  • This white level is actually easier than the last one, despite being further into the game.

Round 16

  • Some of the ghosts decide to fly right between the top of the screen and the time-wasting platforms, so I have to jump above the screen to get through.

Trip 5

Round 17

  • A lot of manipulation was done to avoid hitting ghosts while in midair.
  • I use Clyde to land on the ground without losing any time.

Round 18

  • Oooooooh...scary dark cave...
  • Like the last cave, this one can be completed without opening any gates, but I would have to detour left and around, which would be slower than going through one gate.

Round 19

  • I have to slow down in order to land on clouds and hoodoos that will boost me up to the next, higher platform.

Round 20

  • Man...this stage feels empty. I jump to the music to keep things entertaining.
  • Since time always runs out on this stage, I don't have to wait for a time countdown.

Trip 6

Round 21

  • I waste 2 frames at the "Ready!" screen to get rid of some unavoidable double-decker buses and save a few frames.
  • Another empty level. It's ironically creepier without ghosts present.

Round 22

  • This round introduces logs floating on a mountain lake. Due to their positions, I have to stop or slow down on them until I can safely continue forward.
  • I use a walking jump and then immediately start running to get past Clyde. This is faster than wasting frames to despawn him and doing a running jump.

Round 23

  • This white level is a little harder than the last one, but still no problem for a TAS.

Round 24

  • The white platforms are on the way back this time, giving me more opportunities to jump to the music.

Trip 7

Round 25

  • I manipulate a ghost to bounce just under Pac-Man so I can land in the desert and avoid a sky besieged by ghosts.

Round 26

  • This is one of those weird stages where you can't start running until several frames after the music starts.
  • In the water sections, I jump at specific times to despawn ghosts or move them into better positions.

Round 27

  • I waste three frames at the beginning screen to get the best ghost pattern. This was several frames faster than walking for an extra three frames.
  • Precise positioning allows me to jump over a double-decker bus, which I'm not sure is supposed to be possible.

Round 28

  • The ghosts decide to just cascade over Pac-Man like some intricate dance, so I hardly have to break out of my run.

Trip 8

Round 29

  • Here's where the game requires you to get creative with spawning ghosts and using them as platforms to get across the water.
  • It was difficult to spawn the ghosts into good positions. The hardest one to manipulate was the brown "stepping stool" ghost, which I use to get up to the other ones.

Round 30

  • This cave is similar to the first one, but with more gates and less keys.
  • I have to take a detour around a set of gates to avoid taking a longer detour around a set of gates later.
  • There are two keys, so I take one of them to unlock an exit gate.

Round 31

  • This level was very refreshing to TAS after doing all the manipulation for Round 29 and route planning for Round 30.

Round 32

  • This is the last unique level in the game, and it's where I end the run. Levels after this are just previous levels recycled into "additional" trips. On the PCE version, an ending screen is shown after finishing this Round.

Possible improvements

  • Saving frames somewhere early on. This could change the vertical positions of clouds and logs and enable faster routes through mountain levels.
  • Manipulating ghosts into positions where Pac-Man could jump off of them and skip waiting for logs or clouds. This is hard to do, though, as ghosts usually spawn in the way and force you to slow down.
  • Better manipulation of the ghosts in Round 29. This would be most likely to happen if frames could be somehow saved from earlier in the run.

Suggested screenshots


82021, 82130

Thanks to

  • The BizHawk devs for adding a Lynx core to the already awesome emulator
  • The creators of this partial walkthrough for their strategies
  • NPI for his longplay (linked above), which showed me the solution to Round 29
  • You, for watching


Mothrayas: Judging.

Mothrayas: Accepting as 100% category for the Vault.

Spikestuff: Considering I'm already uploading a lot right now. MORE STUFF~!


Similar submissions (by title and categories where applicable):