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Submission #4673: Archanfel's Genesis The Lost Vikings in 27:29.34

Console: Sega Genesis
Game name: The Lost Vikings
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Lost Vikings, The (U) [!].bin
Branch:
Emulator: Gens Rerecording v11c
Movie length: 27:29.34
FrameCount: 98833
Re-record count: 3
Author's real name: Alexey
Author's nickname: Archanfel
Submitter: Archanfel
Submitted at: 2015-04-25 20:39:02
Text last edited at: 2019-01-05 14:09:31
Text last edited by: feos
Download: Download (14246 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:
This is improvement of 29845 frames (or 8 minutes and 17 seconds) over the legendary TAS by Ouzo.


(Link to video)

Game objectives

  • Emulator used: Gens Rerecording v11c
  • 3-Players
  • Heavy glitch abuse
  • Takes damage to save time
  • Uses death to save time
  • Contains speed/entertainment tradeoffs
  • Uses no passwords
  • Genre: Puzzle
  • Genre: Platform

About the Game

The Lost Vikings is a puzzle-platform video game developed by Silicon & Synapse (now Blizzard Entertainment). It was originally released for the SNES in 1992, then subsequently released for the Amiga, Amiga CD32, MS-DOS, and Sega Genesis systems in 1993;
Sega Genesis version contains 5 extra levels not present in any other version of the game (TR33, SNDS, TMPL, RVTS, PDDY).

Characters

The game's protagonists are a trio of Vikings:
  • Erik The Swift
  • Baleog The Fierce
  • Olaf The Stout

They were abducted by space alien named Tomator.

Each of the Vikings has his own specific abilities. Erik is a light-footed runner who can jump across long distances. He can also smash through walls made of soft brick. Baleog carries a sword and a bow, which he can use to attack enemies and trigger switches that are too distant for Erik to reach. Olaf, the third member of the group, carries a shield with multiple uses.

Improvements table

Level Improvement (frames) Improvement (seconds)
STRT 66 [1] 1.10
GR8T 141 2.35
TLPT 74 1.23
GRND 357 5.95
LLM0 200 3.33
FL0T 1538 25.63
TRSS 24 0.40
PRHS 220 3.67
CVRN 1575 26.25
BBLS 408 6.80
TR33 231 3.85
VLCN 144 2.40
QCKS 140 2.33
PHR0 189 3.15
C1R0 398 6.63
SPKS 417 6.95
JMNN 232 3.87
SNDS 112 1.87
TMPL 1234 20.57
TTRS 627 10.45
JLLY 172 2.87
PLNG 237 3.95
BTRY 1049 17.48
JNKR 1227 20.45
RVTS 364 6.07
CBLT 539 8.98
H0PP 187 3.12
SMRT 818 13.63
V8TR 606 10.1
NFL8 2114 35.23
WKYY 200 3.33
CMB0 1364 22.73
8BLL 376 6.27
TRDR 56 0.93
FNTM 629 10.48
WRLR 2863 47.72
PDDY 1147 19.12
TRPD 1731 28.85
TFFF 2020 33.67
FRGT 271 4.52
4RN4 1070 17.83
MSTR 2478 41.3
Total 29845 8:17.32 [2]

[1] Including 3 frames saved at menu.
[2] From year 2006, frame rate calculations used on on site for sega senesis was changed from 60fps to 59.9227510135505 fps, so some small inconsistent (about 3 seconds) may happen if compare with publication time of old run.

Level by Level

Star Ship

Level 1 – STRT (63 frames saved)

This short level not so trivial as it seems. All Vikings have different starting positions which make task to join them together pretty interesting for deep optimising.
I choosed used this switching scheme: Erik -> Olaf -> Erik -> Olaf -> Erik -> Baelog This scheme allowed to fill all pauses {Olaf falling down & Erik jumping up}, also to use maximum moment of inertia of Olaf's flying, and to avoid using switching for Baleog.

Level 2 - GR8T (141 frames saved)

Skipped shot of arrow by Baleog, since Erik can pass force field offscreen. This way Baleog with Olaf can start move as soon as computer will be destroyed. Erik is left alone at the bottom, usually to keep vikings separately is very bad idea, but this case is one of rare exclusions, because Erik will be able join to team during pause while they flying up in gravity field.

Level 3 - TLPT (74 frames saved)

At the second teleport i used teleport-glitch and saved 30 frames. {Actually it was only single teleport in whole game, where Ouzo for some reasons missed to use this trick.} Remaining improvement in this level came from skipping getting and using [X]-item.

Level 4 - GRND (357 frames saved)

At beginning used new place to switch from Erik to the other vikings, even before pressing button. After teleport Erik got anti-gravity boots which allowed him to turn off gravity field without division vikings.

Prehistoria

Level 5 - LLM0 (200 frames saved)

Skipped getting and using X-item. Changed sequence of actions - at first Erik bashed the wall and only after it get yellow key. At ladder used Olaf's parachute for Baleog.

Level 6 - FL0T (1538 frames saved)

Erik break the wall and opened secret passage almost directly to the exit.

Level 7 - TRSS (24 frames saved)

Olaf avoided getting damage from caveman.

Level 8 - PRHS (220 frames saved)

Erik get fire-arrows instead of Baleog. Olaf helped Baleog move to the other side as soon as possible, and only when lizard was killed. Being pacifist, Olaf just pushed last caveman to the exit, instead of killing him.

Level 9 - CVRN (1575 frames saved)

Skip very long fight against two cave people. Instead of it pass thru them!
Priority of damage in this game: Erik > Baleog > Olaf; also there is minimum time between damage so if all three vikings go forward 2/3 of them able pass thru caveman. Fortunately remaining 1/3 of vikings can jump.
Bubbles in this level have independent timer. Time between bubbles about 11 seconds. It just miracle that i gained enough frames to catch bubble from previous cycle. It was one of the most difficult achievement, you can notice that Olaf is stand in bubble a bit lower than Baleog - it is small fee for 11 seconds cycle. When viking is jump in bubble - this bubble going down until reaching minimum point and then going up to new equilibrium state. Olaf was must wait and jump in bubble in specific moment to help Baleog to walk to this bubble at the exact minimum point.
Use door clip (twice) to skip Blue key.
Skip getting and using X-item. Behavior of caveman says him to roll to boundary of screen/or wall and back. By switching camera in right moment to Erik, i caught caveman at the end of level in a cruel trap between boundary of screen and wall so Baleog and Olaf can jump over him from ladder.

Level 10 - BBLS (408 frames saved)

Bubbles pattern in beginning of level is fixed, so during crossing the swamp there are absolutely no improvement. While Olaf patiently wait rightmost bubble Erik used door clip to reach red key without Olaf. Difficult manipulation with lizards. Skip of getting and using X-item => lead to yet more difficult manipulations with lizards. Erik used another door clip this time to reach yellow keyhole without help of Olaf. And at end of level one more insane manipulations with lizards. Seriously too much lizards in this level.

Level 11 - TR33 (231 frames saved)

Started this level with camera on Olaf it allow manipulate lizards behaviour. At red key Erik got additional damage to get this key inside the caveman. Finally use X-item in this level - i did at the same moment with switching camera to kill enemies without presence of Erik. Transmit yellow key to the Baleog, through closed door.

Level 12 - VLCN (144 frames saved)

A bit delay to destroy wall => cavemen will delay to hit Erik and after hit Erik will be jump over it, caveman will roll to left and not block path to red key and on way back to the ladder. Use switching camera to manipulate fireball, avoid Erik's slowdown. Use Olaf to load bubble a a few frames earlier. Erik eaten an apple just for fun.

Egypt

Level 13 - QCKS (140 frames saved)

For Baleog a bit faster method to make long jump from palms, without walk in negative direction. At end of level - playing with camera position by numerous switchings to keep Erik ahead of team, but other vikings should not stop. Such tricks with extended camera very difficult to optimise.

Level 14 - PHR0 (189 frames saved)

Use Broken Bridge Glitch to completely skip Olaf's part.
Accelerate destroying wall with red key by two strikes. Cancel Erik's falling animation by switching lever.

Level 15 - C1R0 (398 frames saved)

At end of level use extended camera trick to keep Baleog & Olaf moving while Erik at lower floor going to bash wall.

Level 16 - SPKS (417 frames saved)

Tiny trick at first button, Baleog not use arrow, actually Erik press button later than arrow, but with some help of Olaf, Baleog still can get advantage. At screen with block, some modification for Erik's actions to reach ladder earlier. Manipulate egyptian-guard to hurt Erik a bit earlier (to cancel side effect of bashing the wall). At end of level very interesting to solve puzzle with 4-buttons with using all 3 vikings.

Level 17 - JMNN (232 frames saved)

Manipulate acid drops to make more risky B&O flying. Use Extended camera trick (very difficult as usually) while Erik is get key.

Level 18 - SNDS (112 frames saved)

Use other trees to get more benefit of flying on Olaf's shield. Only one moment with scorpions was tricky, but nothing special.

Level 19 - TMPL (1234 frames saved)

There are two platform in this level 294 и 408 frames cycles (their timer started in beginning). I saved 3 large 408 cycles and +extra 10 frames by not using menu. Usually only Erik can use Door Clip because other vikings unable jump, however this time near with door there are the plam-tree, which open promising opportunity to jump from this tree keep some speed offscreen and to do door clip. It can allow to skip blue key and save a lot of time. Indeed Olaf flying on his shield can do it. But Baleog can't. Many days without success i tried to make this jump for Baleog. Very close but fail. It was frustrating to miss so big piece of cake. I even made honest solution for this level with blue key (only one 408 frames cycle saved). But i not surrender and continue thinking, and finally Eureka! - What if instead of jumping from palm, to use Olaf's shield as platform for the Baleog to give him more space to gain higher speed !? Yes it work perfectly. Later Vikings will use same wonderful trick again in NFL8.

Level 20 TTRS - (627 frames saved)

Most of improvement came from using platform from previous cycle (1 cycle = 582 frames). Some small optimizations in remaining part.

The great factory

Level 21 - JLLY (172 frames saved)

Some manipulation of the stompers. Manipulation with saw-robots to prepare back way for Erik without slowdown. The most interesting moment in this level - etude with position of camera when Olaf hold it on the ladder so and Erik above and Baleog below can move at the same time.

Level 22 - PLNG (237 frames saved)

At the second magnet give control to Baleog, so Erik able be at tramplin earlier.
Completely skip third magnet. Erik jump over spikes instead of Olaf.

Level 23 - BTRY (1049 frames saved)

Bottom puzzles:
Olaf get first item instead of Erik, besides in new position Olaf can turn on lift up earlier. All glory to Olaf! A bit more precise optimization of Erik's path. Upper puzzles:
Changed sequence of getting items. At the left puzzle {cube} skip spike problem without using Olaf, Erik can fall thru force field off-screen. At right puzzle {chemical} Erik passed thru fire off-screen. Manipulate electric saw robot to get item inside of it, from left side. Less items transmissions. –Near end used Olaf's parachute system so Erik, the fastest character can put items on the places instead of Baleog. Olaf requested emphasize that he put his trophy by his own hands.

Level 24 - JNKR (1227 frames saved)

To skip getting red key Erik must execute impossibly-hard jump to get access to Olaf's route.
Near end Olaf is delayed on second floor to allow Erik to do door clip offscreen.

Level 25 - RVTS (364 frames saved)

Sidenote: Actually very cruel level, death waited Vikings at each corner, i would be glad to see how modern RTA speedrunners suffer with it but sadly that most of them use simplified SNES or DOS versions where this level absent. Now about improvements: At first trampoline B&O used ricochet near force field to reach second trampoline earlier. Use extended camera trick to move Erik at the same time as B&O. Apply double air-walk glitch for Baleog to skip third trampoline (saved just a few frames but still nice trick imo). Manipulate timings of platforms. On the first platform, use "ride on platform into wall" trick (the same as in BTRY) to reach upper floor a bit earlier. Not killing saw-robot at the end, just walk thru it the same trick as was with caveman.

Level 26 - CBLT (539 frames saved)

Abusing item-duplication glitch to get two bombs -> Reach previous cycle of first platform. On back way Erik wait at ladder at specific position so Olaf and Baleog can pass thru force field even before bomb is exploded. Second puzzle: Not use transmission of items {It stop game for 6 frames! Such huge time wasting}. Use Erik himself to drop second bomb instead of Olaf. Tricky usage trampoline; Third puzzle: Solve this puzzle in one platform's cycle instead of two cycles - one of my favorite small tricks.

Level 27 - H0PP (187 frames saved)

Only one notable moment in this level, Baleog use rarest trick - zipping. Very small timesaver but nevertheless i really like it; Besides it, only small movements and switchings optimizations.

Level 28 - SMRT (818 frames saved)

Tiny trick in beginning - Baleog used balk to add a bit speed for Olaf. At upper part give priority to Olaf to avoid any stops. After bomb you can notice one more tiny trick - stomper stop robot's bullet just behind Erik's back. Use door clip to skip Olaf's flying. Erik turned lift down, use Olaf's parachute for Baleog. Use Olaf's position while dance to save half of platform cycle for Baleog. Baleog not turn off last flame, instead of it vikings made a collective suicide to trigger exit while burning.

Level 29 - V8TR (606 frames saved)

Use Olaf to start lifting up earlier. On way down use Olaf's emergency braking system (for very long lift shaft it is faster than using parachute). Use camera position focused on Baleog on lift that stomper not load and avoid slowdown for Erik. Emergency braking system is so fun and effective that it worth use this trick again! So after furnace Olaf going back to lift. Positive side effect - visual improvement no more red tones (it happens if Olaf stay near with furnace). At upper part use door clip to skip part of Baleog's part. Need to be very careful with position of saw-robot otherwise Erik will risk to die inside of the cage with this iron monster.

Wonderland

Level 30 - NFL8 (2114 frames saved)

At first puzzle i choose totally sick route to skip red key. It took me several weeks of reflections to figure out how possible to do it. The answer is simple - Baleog (camera position) must stay on Olaf shield to create conditions for door clip for Erik. Get blue key duplicate. At the second puzzle to skip Yellow key i repeated trick from TMPL level.

Level 31 - WKYY (200 frames saved)

Small optimizations. Applied the Air-walk glitch for Baleog to walk above hole, so Erik not wait and can go get blue key earlier. Small etude with camera: i used Olaf on ladder as camera-holder. This way is possible to optimize vertical platform and load it in perfect phase for Erik. Manipulate Alien Wally. Reduce transmission of items - gave Baleog blue key instead of red. Manipulate horizontal platform to get the maximal moment of inertia for Baleog.

Level 32 - CMB0 (1364 frames saved)

At beginning used new place to switch from Olaf to Erik {during falling down}. At second levers panel Erik is almost not visible, but he still counted as on screen and can be controlled. Skip lift section - vikings ride on Olaf shield. Use door clip to skip Olaf's part. Risky moment was to not miss the first bubble, but fortunately Erik can run fast.

Level 33 - 8BLL (376 frames saved)

Baleog's cyclic platform is heart of level, all optimisations are honed to this platform. Added additional switching from Olaf->Baleog, while Olaf flying to Baleog can shoot in target. Redused time of switching Olaf->Erik, Erik jumped only in next hole instead of second next hole - actually from both these holes Erik will be able to jump to treadmill at exactly the same time. Switch from Erik to Baelog, before Erik is teleported, he will be able to do it later when Baleog will walk above him.

Level 34 - TRDR (56 frames saved)

Get Blue Key by Erik instead of Olaf.

Level 35 - FNTM (629 frames saved)

A bit more risky fly above bubble field, Olaf touched leftmost corner of bubble, and before buble is going down do air-walk glitch to be able fly until trampoline with Baleog on board. Use Olaf's parachute for Erik while he get red key. At pomp Erik start to ballooning first, very difficult manipulation with anti-Baleog to avoid deflation hits. Small shortcut at Erik's route, abusing fact that ventilator not exist offscreen. Tiny trick at getting blue key Erik used at corner of deadly spiky platform to jump. Transmit yellow key to Olaf instead of Baleog, this way Baleog can start to ballooning earlier. Place with to platform is very tricky, both these platform are effected by camera position, so possible to manipulate their phases by switching camera between Vikings to prepare the luckiest pattern for Baleog. At getting red key Erik cancel falling animation by pseudo-ballooning. Actually by using item duplication glitch it was possible to get two red keys at beginning and skip second red key, but it is slower because in this case i need to waste 6 frames for using menu, so i prefered faster without duplication.

Level 36 - WRLR (2863 frames saved)

Erik (with camera) is walking down to dispel ventilator offscreen, so Baleog and Olaf can fly up and skip bigger part of level. Erik will join to them later. This route itself as old as egyptian pyramids, problem was that at in 3-Buttons control scheme forbid switching during ballooning. To overcome this obstacle i used Give-Up menu just before switching. Repeat this trick, this time to fly thru force field offscreen.

Level 37 - PDDY (1147 frames saved)

At getting Red and Blue keys Baelog and Erik swapped their roles. Erik not believe in spikes. On way down cancel falling animation by pseudo-ballooning instead of using Olaf's parachute Yellow key was skipped by using rare type of door clip - impulse of getting damage of 8-Ball, which pushed Vikings thru door being offscreen.

Level 38 - TRPD (1731 frames saved)

By using Underground passage glitch skip big part of map, and to get red key without any difficulties.

Star Ship

Level 39 - TFFF (2020 frames saved)

Two huge skips in this level:

First - beautiful shortcut for Erik's route, he can use Olaf's path and survive, this way he can destroy square block from left side and skip yellow key. Second improvement - Olaf get two blue keys by duplication. Near end of level nontrivial manipulation with manipulation platforms at the same time with execution teleport glitches for Olaf and Erik, separately these tasks are simple, but together it was brain twisting place. Also at very end Olaf managed to use keys in reverse order without slowdown, i really glad for him.

Level 40 - FRGT (271 frames saved)

Small optimisation in first half of level - jumping in half-destroyed hole and a bit different Olaf's flying.

Real puzzle starts after moment of droping second bomb. To combine Erik flying cycles and new Baleog's actions with cyclic platform was like walk on the razor's edge. Improvement is relativity small, but technical complexity to save these 200 frames was a way more than 2000 frames in previous level. I write very simplified explanation: Add additional switching Erik-Baleog-Erik. During it Baleog jump down and will take his place on platform offscreen. Also Baleog managed to pass cyclic platform in one cycle, to do it he penetrated inside wall during bow-animation.

Level 41 - 4RN4 (1070 frames saved)

At first room use exotic trick - with help of damage boots by scorpion's poison drops Baleog and Olaf made a hyper-jump glitches and skipped blue key. Btw using Peripatetics glitch {greek philosophical school, they liked talking during walk} at beginning of this level was the most effective than earlier. Get duplicates of keys of three colors. The most useful extra key is Blue, second useful is Red, and finally Yellow... benefit of Yellow is laughably small less than half of second, but is still improvement.

Final level 42 - MSTR (2478 frames saved)

Fast move the sons of Mim and fate
Is heard in the note of the Gjallarhorn
Loud blows Heimdall, the horn is aloft,
In fear quake all who on Hel-roads are.

The last battle begins

Tomator Phase 1.

Erik used item duplication glitch to get third bomb from left side and saved about 2 seconds. The presence of Olaf is not necessary for remaining phases, so instead teleportation he prefer having fun jumping on trampoline until end of game. Switched to Baleog as soon as yellow key was used.

Tomator Phase 2.

While lift is moving up switched to Erik, Erik execute door clip. After shooting into switches presence of Baleog is not necessary for remaining phases, so possible to skip blue key and all other Baleog actions.

Tomator Phase 3.

This phase is the most significant moment for sequence breaking. Erik use cocktail of various tricks and glitches:
Passed both force fields off screen, and turn off them. With using to item duplication glitch get three shields.
Bash Tomator at moment of appearing to divide him and his private force field - now our enemy is defenseless and Erik can push him to anti-gravity field which force him to teleport him the directly to Phase 5.
To cancel side effect of bashing use special technique to penetrate inside Tomato and get damage just after bashing him. Used all 3 shields and 2 standard HP to cancel it 5 times.

Tomator Phase 4.

Skipped.

Tomator Phase 5.

Actually it is not Phase 5, it is continue of Phase 3, Tomator just teleported here. Between P3 and P5 there is significant difference. In normal Phase 5 Tomator can't walk. But we still have deal with dangerous opponent from P3 - he CAN walk. And in case if he will walk enough far from lever - it lead to unpleasant complication, he will not fly when Erik will shut down the lever. So to be able send Tomator into space without extra complications, Erik must run as fast as the wind. And he did it.

END

Possible improvements

<TODO: Write confessions about this matter.>

Special thanks to Ouzo

I want to say huge thanks to Ouzo.

This game was my introduction to TASing. I saw his TAS in the first time 2008 and was very impressed. Well i saw several others TASes even earlier, but only incredible work by Ouzo finally able to touch my stone heart. I never thought that one day i will be able repeat his wonderful journey with Vikings. In last months while i worked on improvement, i found that he used some tiny tricks which i never noticed all these years with by simply viewing (!!) Ouzo impressed me once again.

Special thanks to other persons

To Lost Vikings Speedrunners of the past decades. A several routes/tricks i used in my TAS were discovered many years ago by unknowns heroes of the past.
To modern Lost Vikings speedrunners - Michael; johannhowitzer; and ChanseyNES. Recently they did a good progress in speedrunning this game. I used several theirs new tricks or/and ideas.
To marzojr for consultations regarding 6-Buttons controllers

Suggested screenshots

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Truncated: I guess I'll take this one as well!


Truncated: Accepting as a great improvement to the published movie.

fsvgm777: Processing.


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