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

Submission #5673: £e Nécroyeur's Arcade Track & Field in 04:01.25

Console: Arcade
Game name: Track & Field
Game version: USA
ROM filename: TRACKFLDC.ZIP
Branch:
Emulator: MAME-RR v0.139 v0.1-beta
Movie length: 04:01.25
FrameCount: 14475
Re-record count: 55228
Author's real name: George Murphy
Author's nickname: £e Nécroyeur
Submitter: £e Nécroyeur
Submitted at: 2017-10-15 04:13:33
Text last edited at: 2019-05-12 05:42:13
Text last edited by: £e Nécroyeur
Download: Download (64583 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:

(Link to video)


Track & Field is an arcade game developed and published by Konami in 1983. Track & Field was developed to coincide with the then-upcoming 1984 Summer Olympics, and the original version (Japan's Hyper Olympic) was licensed by the International Olympic Committee. The game features 3 buttons, and no joystick. Track & Field rewards rapid button presses and precise timing in a unique and exciting way, and these concepts would define the genre for years to come. Players would resort to all manner of trickery in an attempt to eke out as many button presses as possible, and button damage was rampant, causing later controls to adopt button guards for the Run buttons, and finally replace both with a trackball. Track & Field also bred fierce competition, particularly because players could compete head-to-head. So much so in fact, that the game was at the center of history's largest arcade video game tournament, the "1984 March of Dimes International Konami/Centuri Track & Field Challenge", with over 1 million contestants worldwide. Of technical interest, the game features early digitized speech, and is one of the first video games to feature parallax scrolling.


Game Objectives

  • Emulator used: MAME-RR v0.139 v0.1-beta
  • Aims for fastest time
  • Aims for maximum score without sacrificing Frames
  • Abuses programming errors for entertainment
  • Entertains without sacrificing Frames
  • Breaks a World Record. For real this time.

DIP Switch Settings

  • Credits set to Free Play
  • After Last Event set to Game Over
  • Bonus Life set to None
  • Data Entered Erased set to On
  • Level of Difficulty set to Difficult


Comments

As a bonus, the input for this TAS also works with Hyper Olympic!

This game is pure button-tapping speed and precise timing...it begs to be TASed!

In the United States, Track & Field was licensed for distribution by Centuri. This particular version of the game features more demanding Qualifying requirements in many Events. This TAS uses this version of the game for its enhanced difficulty.

Each Event has subtle differences in its input mechanics. The different mechanics are also used in different combinations.

If a player crosses the finish line in 100 Meter Dash or 110 Meter Hurdles while traveling at a rate of less than 100 cm/sec, run posture is canceled and the player will walk across the finish line.

If Speed exceeds 1520 cm/sec, the area around the Speed value turns blue and the "cm/sec" is hidden.

Event By Event Comments

100 Meter Dash

This is a straightforward trouncing of the Computer.

There is an 8 Frame delay after 1st Run input (leaving the starting blocks) and a 9 Frame delay after 2nd Run input (first step). Press Run 1 on Frame 1060, press Run 2 on Frame 1069, and then Press Run 1 on Frame 1079 to begin with optimum efficiency.

For maximum Speed, press a Run button for 1 Frame and then release for 1 Frame. Repeat as needed. There is no need to alternate between Run button 1 and Run button 2.

The RNG is determined by the Frame on which the Event begins.

Computer's performance is determined by the RNG and the Hero's performance. The faster the Hero's Speed, The faster the Computer's Speed. Note that the Computer's maximum Speed is about 1,300 cm/sec.

Time elapses at a rate of :05 per each 3 Frames, or :01.66 per Frame.

Maximum attainable Speed is 1442 cm/sec.

The Computer's Time of 09:02 is the 2nd fastest in the world. The game ignores this.

Of interest, the 06:92 Time is identical to the NES TAS--despite no pause glitch!

Long Jump

For this Event, the goal is to Qualify with minimal excess.

For maximum Speed, press a Run button for 1 Frame and then release for 1 Frame. Repeat as needed. There is no need to alternate between Run button 1 and Run button 2.

The nearest location from which to begin a jump is X Major 2 X Minor 26.

When the Hero reaches X Major 2 X Minor 33, Speed is locked at its current value until the Try is completed.

Beginning a Jump while the Hero's foot is in contact with the Foul line provides additional Speed to the Jump. This additional Speed ranges from 20-50 cm/sec, in increments of 10, based on the proximity of the right edge of the Hero's foot to the right edge of the Foul Line.

The priority in this case is not simply to Jump on the last possible Frame at maximum Speed, but rather to Jump on the last possible Frame at the maximum Speed that also allows the maximum Speed bonus from the Foul Line. As such, Run input is ended 8 Frames earlier than necessary in order to coordinate maximum Speed bonus from the Foul Line and minimal excess during the Jump.

Maximum attainable Speed before the Foul Line bonus is 1517 cm/sec. Maximum attainable Speed after the Foul Line bonus is 1557 cm/sec.

Qualifying on 3rd Try saves several Frames compared to qualifying on 1st Try or 2nd Try.

Javelin Throw

For this Event, the goal is to Qualify with minimal excess.

The last possible location from which to begin a Throw is X Major 5 X Minor 11.

Maximum attainable Speed is 1545 cm/sec. At this Speed, the Hero travels at 5-6 pixels per Frame.

The Hero travels at 5-6 pixels per Frame. Javelin travels at a maximum rate of 4 pixels per Frame. As such, it is faster for the Hero to run as far as possible before the Throw is begun.

During the approach, Speed is increased by using the same pattern of Run input used during 100 Meter Dash and Long Jump.

After the Throw has begun, pressing the Run buttons increases Javelin's momentum. During this phase, the optimal pattern of Run input is different than the pattern of Run input used during 100 Meter Dash and Long Jump.

For maximum momentum after a Throw has begun, press a Run button for 1 Frame, press the other Run button on the next Frame, and then release both buttons for 1 Frame. Repeat as needed. Obviously for this pattern of Run input it is necessary to alternate between Run button 1 and Run button 2.

A 21° Throw during 2nd Try saves 3 Frames compared to a 20° Throw.

This Event can be completed 3 Frames earlier by using the "optimal" input while the Javelin is in flight. However, in 110 Meter Hurdles, this causes Computer to finish 2 Frames later and later causes Hammer Throw to start 1 Frame later, thereby negating the 3 Frames saved during Javelin Throw. Furthermore, High Jump starts 1 Frame later. As such, the pattern of Run input used during 100 Meter Dash and Long Jump is used instead.

110 Meter Hurdles

As with 100 Meter Dash, this is an all-out race to the finish.

The RNG is determined by the Frame on which the Event begins and the result of the previous Event.

Computer's performance is determined by the RNG and the Hero's performance. The faster the Hero's Speed, The faster the Computer's Speed. Note that the Computer's maximum Speed is about 1,197 cm/sec, and his fastest possible Time is 12:45. Computer can be made to finish with a time of 12:44, but this requires that the Hero finish with the same (or very nearly the same) time.

The first Frame of a Hurdle falling has a graphical glitch.

A minor collision with a Hurdle decreases Speed by 300 cm/sec.

A major collision with a Hurdle decreases Speed to 200 cm/sec.

When a Jump begins, Speed is decreased by 300 cm/sec.

After landing, movement is stopped for 1 Frame and Speed is increased by 200 cm/sec.

If each Hurdle is Jumped on the last possible Frame, there is not enough space to successfully jump the last Hurdle.

This Event can be completed on the same Frame whether the Hurdles are jumped on the earliest or last possible Frame. However, jumping each Hurdle on the last possible Frame results in a Time of 08:89 compared to 08:87 for jumping each Hurdle on the earliest possible Frame. As such, each Hurdle is Jumped on the earliest possible Frame for a higher Score.

Hammer Throw

For this Event, the goal is to Qualify with minimal excess.

For maximum momentum, press a Run button for 1 Frame, and then press the other Run button on the next Frame. Repeat as needed. This pattern of Run input is unique to this Event.

The RNG is determined by the Frame on which the Event begins and the result of the previous Event or Try.

The RNG determines the distance of a Throw to a small extent.

The Qualifying Throw is made during 2nd Try because a more favorable RNG allows for an earlier Throw than during 1st Try or 3rd Try.

High Jump

For this Event, the goal is to Qualify with minimal input.

Because this is the final Event, there is no need to Foul. After Qualifying, the game will automatically Foul to Game Over.

Unlike other Events, there is no need to use the Run buttons to increase momentum during the approach. Rather, the Run buttons are used after the Jump has begun to increase the Hero's momentum.

For maximum momentum after a Jump has begun, press a Run button for 1 Frame, press the other Run button on the next Frame, and then release both buttons for 1 Frame. Run input can be entered starting 2 Frames after the Frame on which Jump/Throw is pressed. Note that it is possible to overflow the momentum value.

After a Jump has begun, pressing the Run buttons increases the Hero's momentum. This value is indicated by memory address 28B3. Unlike other Events, 28B3 does not increase the value at 28B2 when it exceeds a value of 9. Rather, 28B3 can be increased to its maximum value (255) and will overflow to 0 if it exceeds 255.

Without using Run input during a Jump, the highest point of a 90° Jump is Y 91.

Using optimum Run input during a Jump, the highest point of a 90° Jump is Y 103.


Fog: Judging.

Fog: There has been a good amount of discussion about the goals of the submission, with the consensus being that the submission should have aimed for the highest possible scores. While maximum score is a valid category, going for the fastest completion is also a valid goal choice for this game. Going by the audience reception as well as my own thoughts, the game is just not Moons material, so fastest completion and maximum score are the only two valid categories.

With that aside, there are not any outstanding issues with this run that would prevent this from being accepted here.

Accepting for Vault.

thecoreyburton: Processing.


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