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

Submission #4812: Alyosha's NES Super Turrican in 08:36.39

Console: Nintendo Entertainment System
Game name: Super Turrican
Game version: Europe
ROM filename: Super Turrican (Europe).nes
Emulator: FCEUX 2.2.2
Movie length: 08:36.39
FrameCount: 25823
Re-record count: 12337
Author's real name: David M
Author's nickname: Alyosha
Submitter: Alyosha
Submitted at: 2015-08-27 12:16:29
Text last edited at: 2015-08-30 21:51:10
Text last edited by: fsvgm777
Download: Download (6890 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:
Super Turrican is an action platforming game whose distinctive feature is the morph ball mode (similar to Metroid) which lets you travel at high speed and through enemies. The game features many tricks for going fast.

Game objectives

  • Emulator used: FCEUX 2.2.2
  • Beats the game as fast as possible
  • PAL timing
  • Hardest difficulty


This run features significant improvements over the published run, in which a significant improvement was known even at the time of publication. Since that time, boss skips and a level zip have also been found. The current run also has significantly faster boss fights.

At some point, a myth about this game seems to have taken hold that it runs on the same speed on both NTSC and PAL systems. Consequently the published run of this game is run on NTSC timing. Luckily we have people like fsvgm777 who (unlike me) don't just take things for granted and test them out themselves. While the game certainly is doing something to account for region differences, the timing is clearly different. The game was only ever released in Europe, a US release was cancelled, and no ROM is known to exist of a US version, so while its possible that version would just use the original ROM, that is purely speculation. Therefore this run uses PAL timing now that that myth is firmly debunked.

Also difficulty 4 (hardest) was used. In practice this has little impact on the TAS run, although in real time it poses a very hard challenge.

Stage by stage comments

Significant time is saved in all stages. Two common tricks include jumping at running speed while exiting morph ball mode, mentioned by Truncated in the original submission, and 'running' speed while in morph ball mode, which for some reason wasn't known about in the original either.

Temp Encode

Act 1

Main improvements are movement based. No route changes except for a neat jump in 1-2 that mklip2001 suggested to me in the thread. The boss fight is also much faster.

Act 2

Again more optimized, the boss fight is much faster, and completed in a single jump.

Act 3

The boss skip here was originally found by jorf in a real time run. The trick is to spawn an item in the first slot and get it to fly close to the boss' room. This prevents the boss from spawning. It's a relatively rare setup, since enemies don't always spawn in the slots in the same order, and the direction the item flies is also random. Hard difficulty gives turrets more health, so the setup also takes a bit longer to account for this.

Act 4

There is a zip in 4-3 which involves jumping up the right side of the level. You have to be careful though, if the screen isn't scrolled properly when you enter morph ball mode you simply go up to your death.

Act 5

Another boss skip here involving a flying enemy right below where the boss normally spawns. This one is quite a bit simpler the the level 3 boss. Just morph ball over and then go back, I also do a quick jump to start the screen scrolling up to where it needs to be for the mini-boss on the other side. The last boss is much quicker then in the original. It seems Luke didn't realize you could do much more damage shooting at his chest.

Other comments

I noticed this game a while back, it looked fun to TAS and was also fast paced. I'm surprised how much savings there really were. There are lots of opportunities for optimization, I'm sure I missed something along the way, but I don't think I made any major mistakes.

Thanks to mklip2001 for going over my WIPs and offering suggestions for improvement.

Also thanks to Arc for originally improving my first boss fight, making me look much closer at how specials work and how bosses absorb damage. This made subsequent bosses much faster as well.

And final thanks to krankdud for pointing out some improvements in the game thread.

ars4326: Judging!

ars4326: Hello again, Alyosha. First off, props to you for your willingness to go back through this run in the correct PAL timing (and for selecting the highest difficulty, also). Overall, there were very substantial improvements made here, throughout. The new boss skips, stage zips, and morph ball speeds truly added up (and even beat the previous run's NTSC timing!). This certainly has more polish to it now than it did, before. Nice work, once again!

Accepting as an improvement to the published run!

fsvgm777: Processing.

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