Osman is the best game you've never played.
What is Osman? Osman is a arcade game in the spirit of Strider. It's a very obscure and underrated arcade game, which didn't see much of the light of day, thanks to various issues with the hardware.. and the fact that the game is unforgivingly hard. The game never once lets you breathe: and in unassisted play, there are a lot of things to manage at the same time. This, along with the 3 health you start out with, can make clearing with just a single credit a nightmare. The game mostly revolves along Osman and his power: he has the power to make clones of himself when he attacks that stay for a varying amount of time and reproduce the attack he just did.
Note that there are no precise values on any of these. This is because RAM Search in this game simply refuses to work. Shoutouts to FBA-rr!
When going in a direction, Osman will gradually gain speed. This speed gain is slow and incremental, but leads to an huge top speed. Osman's current speed is visually represented by three states: walking, running and sprinting.
Jumping has the same height no matter how long you hold 2 (the jump button). An very important thing to note is that jumping conserves and increase whatever speed you're currently at: this is called horizontal speed conservation
, or HSC for short. This makes it so jumping is, in a normal situation, as fast as walking.
Sliding is done by holding D+R and pressing 2 once. Sliding starts out at max speed, but starts to decelerate past 6 frames of sliding. Attacking (by pressing 1) while sliding once will add a shockwave to your slide, damaging enemies; a slide attack. Attacking while slide attacking will have two effects: if you're holding down, Osman will redo another slide attack, and if he isn't holding down, do a normal kick, which will interrupt the slide but still keep Osman at sliding speed for one frame. Slide attacks don't increase your speed.
Hypersliding is the combinaison of the above facts. By sliding, then immediatly doing a double slide attack into a jump as soon as you kick, you are able to keep the speed of the slide via an HSC. This is because the kick, as said earlier, retains your speed for one frame. This is abused throughout all the run, and is only possible in a TAS.
By standing on the ground, Osman can either do a kick if standing still or a punch if moving at at least running speed. These do the same damage. While holding down, Osman can do a low kick, that deals the same damage again.
While jumping, Osman can do a jump kick. Jump kicks are the most abused move in the entire run because even though they deal only half damage compared to our other options, they can be spammed extremely quicky (4 frames between each kick) and can be done without losing any speed.
Piledriving can affect every enemy in the game and deals a lot of damage. The reason it isn't used much is because it takes a long time to execute, but it can be useful against bosses that are affected by it. This is used against Herio 2.
As Osman gains power ups (the red things in the P capsules) his suit will change. The suits are as follow: Blue > Purple > Red > White > Black. Each suit adds one clone, with the exception of Red which adds two. Each suit is permanent, except for Black which lasts only for a specific amount of hits; after which you devolve to White. Black has the special property of massively powering up your attacks, most notably the kick, which deals twice the damage as a jumpkick, but has a much lower delay and a bigger range. As such, an important part of the run is managing the black suit, as well as managing your suits overall.
Each time you attack with a copy in storage, you will create a copy of Osman that stays in place. These copies deal half Osman's kick damage, and are stuck in the attack Osman did when he created in (if it was a low kick, for example, it will stay a lowkick.)
By pressing 3, you can do a special attack. Its damage is the same no matter what suit I have. As such, it is useful for the early game where Osman doens't deal much damage. While doing the special attack, Osman's hitbox moves with the attack: this means he can break and collect powerups.
Fast forwarding in this game is simple: when a cutscene occurs (as in, anything that displays text on screen, apart from the end of level screens) you can hold 1 to speed it up or Start to skip it. This mechanic is implemented so that, in short, the game speed is doubled. But what about cutscenes where Osman can move? The result is very particular: Osman also gets fast forwarded! This means, anytime there is a cutscene in which Osman can move, I keep it on screen as long as possible to abuse the double speed.
Clipping is pretty straightforward: if you enter the corner of a wall or a platformer the right way, you get clipped up. For more dubious collisions, such as ramps, it's very easy to clip into them: this pushes you up instantanly.
By simply going fast enough, you can skip important triggers. This is used in Stage 1 & 5. The reason why this happens is the game has trouble loading stuff; going fast enough, you can skip stuff being loaded.
When an enemy is hit, he flashes white for a varying amount of frames before going into invulnerability. You can damage the enemy during this period, leading to massive damage.
Not a lot going on in the first part of this stage. I keep sprinting speed throughout this part doing some very precise HSCs, and kill stuff along the way. One thing to note is that this game doens't lag at all: this means I can do a lot to entertain. The big obstacle blocking Osman's way is destroyed by two jumpkicks, which allows to maintain sprinting speed. I show off a little glitch on the enemy on the two round ramps: I face right for one frame so that the explosion explodes to the right.
Now, there's supposed to be a long miniboss fight here, but because we went fast through the level, the boss.. simply doens't appear. Pretty convenient. I jump after reaching the cutscene at the Nozawa Bank to trigger it a few frames faster. Then we start the second miniboss fight! This miniboss fight consists of two turrets rotating. Because of their pattern, I can OHKO them with one special, which is much faster than killing them the normal way.
Once done, I go left a bit to setup an hyperslide, then make my way to Gamran. This guy is not too hard to deal with, and he is disposed of with a few jumpkicks.
Hyperslide at the start, like usual. This section introduces the blue crystals (they should have been introduced in Stage 1, but.. we skipped the part with them) which bounce you in the direction the green spheres are facing. After a few jumps, we make our way to Visete. I use the special right at the start to destroy the P capsule and collect the powerup right behind him, gettings the purple suit early and making this fight much shorter, thanks to now having a copy which deals a lot of damage along with repeated jumpkicks.
There's a section with a train here. But with a clever hyperslide, we can just skip all that jazz and land much farther off the level. I waste 3 frames getting a power up here, but it significantly speeds up the fight to come.
The fast forward glitch also makes its appearance, and we can see its huge influence on Osman's movement.
The fast forward glitch carries all the way to the start of the Herio fight. Herio is very annoying to fight; I use my last special at the top of the arena to collect the two powerups and get the black suit. Then, I go to the right of the arena as to bait Herio to go towards me, and finish him off with some jumpkicks.
This stage starts very brutally with Sandora. Since I have the black suit left over from the previous stage, I finish it off here with some jumpkicks, and completely destroy Pandora this way. Moving through the desert is a combinaison of hyperslides and HSCs, with having to jumpkick constantly to destroy the enemies along the way.
The fast forward glitch is used again on Jack's text: this saves over 100 frames. Once down to the cave, there's 3 paths: all have the same levels, but the bosses are different. We will fight three main bosses, and no matter which one we pick, I will have to fight the two other anyways, so I chose the fastest path.
The mineshaft section is pretty complex, and is gotten through with a combinaison of hyperslides, HSCs and slide kicks to destroy the coming barrels: it looks very clean overall.
Once done, we fight Cannons! Cannons is a very easy boss: she cloaks after she takes a certain amount of damage. This means we have time to play around and collect powerups easily.
Boats! This stage doens't have much to it technically, but it's impressive. The difficultly, which started to get pretty high in Stage 3, gets much harder here. We have some autoscrollers, some playing around, nothing worth explaining. Another fast forward glitch is used.
Willif is a pretty tough boss in normal play, due to him flying around like crazy. The route used to kill him is pretty complex, since I also have to pick up a black suit to get the more powerful kicks and be able to chain him easily without any troublesome behavior.
Stage 5 is where you can leave your sanity, because this stage is insanely hard. The section leading to the HQ has very careful platforming with some hyperslides and HSCs; this is because we're skipping yet another trigger. The door to the HQ normally blocks you from going forward before beating a miniboss, but if you go just fast enough, you can barely make it before the door actually loads, skipping a miniboss and a lot of time.
Tianon offers us three scenarios, each being a boss fight from previous stages. The reason I chose the last one is because, even though we have to wait extra, it's the only one which doens't have a small cutscene at the start of it, and it is also optimal terrain for getting a black suit and killing Tianon easily.
Tianon herself is very hard: just touching her will lead to a several second stun. On top of that, she flies very fast all around the stage. The aim is to get the black suit, then chain Tianon quickly for a kill as fast as possible.
And then follows the hardest room in the entire game, the infamous Prague section. The route I use is pretty easy to understand, and it has a lot of close calls. Two enemy kills are forced to avoid getting damaged.
Euro-Gam is not an easy boss. He has a ton of health and his patters are spammy, making it hard to get hit through. The way I deal with it is both with going backwards while jumpkicking and hyperslides whenever he gets close, all while avoiding the upper waves and machine gun shots.
Welcome to Hell! After some quick jumps, we face Herio 2, which is a much harder Herio. The annoying part is that she still will flee from her attacks, so control is needed. The way I achieve it is with a piledrive to lock Herio to the right part of the screen, then bait her out and finish her off with jumpkicks.
Gamran 2 spams everything twice as fast. This is awful, because if he fires both fire shots and his flamethrower, it's impossible to hit him. This happens once, and I have to back off, before quickly going in again with an hyperslide.
Now for the first real boss fight: Fake. Fake is a clone of Osman, with the powers of the black suit, and isn't really a threat. The reason is his invicibility frames are very low, and it's easy to chain him since he will start the fight with three kicks: enough to destroy him while he tries to kick us.
Another running away section, another hyperslide to get sprinting speed. Landing on the crystal down is a precise maneuveur.
Finally, the last big fight with the big trio with the three bosses from the earlier stages: Cannons, Willif and Tianon. This is a very tough fight, so we simply skip it. The reason for that is that beating this fight simply makes some platforms appear. However, by going on an elevated point and hypersliding, I gain sprinting speed, just enough to land on the final boss platform and trigger the rising of the swords to get to Slaver. But one thing even more advantageous: since the cutscene over from the trio hasn't finished, we can still fast forward glitch! This is a huge advantage.
As we make our way to Slaver, her cutscene is glitched, and she only can trigger the end of it in a bizarro fashion. Since we triggered the end cutscene for Slaver, then make our way to Slaver's arena itself, it retriggers Slaver and her cutscene again, even though we've alderaly started to fight her! This puts her into a very glitchy state where she is both in fast forward mode and her normal state, leading to glitchy movements.
Now that we've triggered the fight properly, it's a desesperate struggle to end the fight without crashing the game. It's in a very unstable state, and if we trigger a phase too fast - the game soft resets. This isn't helped by Slaver's now unpredictable movement. This is why this fight takes long, as Slaver is offscreen most of the time. With the help of jumpkicks, her health is whittled down, and that's the end of the game!