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

Submission #5772: Ready Steady Yeti's GBA Noddy: A Day in Toyland in 17:52.19

Console: Game Boy Advance
Game name: Noddy: A Day in Toyland
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Noddy - A Day in Toyland (USA) (En,Fr,Es)
Branch:
Emulator: Bizhawk 1.11.6
Movie length: 17:52.19
FrameCount: 64039
Re-record count: 5058
Author's real name: Billy
Author's nickname: Ready Steady Yeti
Submitter: Ready Steady Yeti
Submitted at: 2017-12-29 19:32:36
Text last edited at: 2018-01-18 07:09:00
Text last edited by: Ready Steady Yeti
Download: Download (26189 bytes)
Status: published
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Introduction

Noddy: A Day in Toyland is an extremely difficult game to beat, for different reasons than usual. Nope, it's not hard-to-reach jumps, no continues, overabundance of enemies, one-hit deaths, nope, come on, keep guessing. Well, it's difficult to beat because it's difficult to actually sit there and play it without getting extremely bored, and then extremely angry at the developers for making such a horribly boring game, slapping out the game cartridge and throwing it right into the fireplace to watch it burn!!! This is a game that's so bad, I can't even think of a worse game. Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is so bad it's received a cult following, and even it's boring as hell, but at least it's funny to laugh at. But this... YUCK! No game can compare to the awful abomination that is Noddy: A Day in Toyland.

Goals

  • Core: mGBA
  • Takes damage to save time
  • Aims for fastest time
  • any% completion
  • Genre: Platformer

About the game

Other than that it's horrible, let me go over the basics. Did you see how many fucking companies had their labels at the beginning of this game? It's ridiculous. With that many people involved, they should have been able to make something of a lot better quality. Apparently, they were so ashamed of this game that they didn't even put a credits sequence anywhere in the game. That's right, not even a place in the Options menu where you can open the credits. Not a single real person's name is mentioned anywhere in the game. I'm pretty surprised it came out in the US and Europe, and Noddy and the Birthday Party didn't. You know, I actually saw a copy this game in a used books/games store not too long ago, and I wanted to smash it with a hammer right where it sat. How could that game even exist here? It's mind-blowing.

You also don't have to do this game in order, technically. There is a level select right at the start of the game. I'm not fucking kidding around here; go see for yourself. You can select any level you want at any time you want.

This of course doesn't mean that going through the levels chronologically doesn't come with some merit. The game has a storyline (though a crappy one) that is really meant to be followed level-by-level. I guess the developers wanted to give kids the option to go to their favorite level or whatever right off-hand after completing the game without adding a save or password feature. So, going through all the levels from "play game" rather than selecting the last level in level select is what any% completion means here.

Anyway, so the game is about as basic as it looks. It's a platformer, but most of the time you're actually just moving to the left or to the right for a whole fuckin' minute before actually doing anything. Other than the platformer stages, there are 4 autoscrollers. Yes, FOUR AUTOSCROLLER MINIGAMES, most of which last about 2 minutes long if I counted correctly. In the autoscrollers, you're "driving" in a car, just like it looks. Nothing special at all. You're driving on a dirt road...(WHO DOES THAT ANYMORE??!?!?!)...trying to avoid all the obstacles, such as rocks, logs, trees falling over, and these weird red-and-blue balls with eyes that roll right in your path. Also in some of the car levels, you encounter cows and chickens. It scares you first time playing cuz you think you're gonna hit them, but no, you can't hit them. They always run away right when you're about to touch them. You can also honk the horn to get them out of your way. And that's the only purpose of honking it at all. So, the car levels can't be sped up or slowed down at all. At all. I don't care what you do in those minigames, it's all about the camera. All you can do is move up and down, and make the car glitch out when you hit a slant. You can also get hurt in these minigames,

You might have noticed or known that a few months back I submitted a TAS of another Noddy game, Noddy and the Birthday Party. You think that game was bad? That game is GOLD compared to this one. I'd play that game over this one anyday. This game does have some slight similarities to Noddy and the Birthday Party, mostly in regards to the type of stuff you see in it, such as characters and types of levels. So, at least you can say that the developers of this game probably at least knew of that much better Game Boy Color game.

This game is not to be confused with the DS game Noddy in Toyland, which is just another one of those stupid minigame collection games that there are like a million of in the DS library. If that game even has a completion goal (I didn't play it for more than about 2 minutes), then it'd probably be rejected here at TASVideos for triviality. Anyway, that's a completely different game, despite having such a similar name.

The real problem with this game is that Noddy moves so slow. You can't speed him up either. There's no way to do that at all. This is up there with Postman Pat and the Greendale Rocket. In fact, it's even worse than that game.

In some levels there are items that you can throw to distract enemies and make them unable to hurt you. We never do this to save time in the run, though, because it doesn't save time at all. There's like a second-long waiting sequence every time you throw anything, unlike in Birthday Party where you can make it only make it happen for three frames. Some levels allow you to throw cupcakes, which works on all enemies. The other item you can be given is the bags of money; mostly in the later levels because that's when the gremlins start appearing.

General tricks

  • As mentioned below, there are a lot of platform glitches in the game. They're used in a few levels, but only for brief amounts of time.
  • Jumping doesn't waste any time.
  • There are very few parts of the game when we need to fall as fast as possible in the game, but to fall faster you have to jump off an edge at the soonest possible frame rather than falling off it.
  • Taking damage wastes a few frames, so only do it when you have to! Also, the game doesn't allow you to jump for a few frames after taking damage.
  • Every time you collect 50 coins, your health resets back to 5.
  • At least the jump heights in this game aren't fixed. They're quite adjustable from very small to very tall.
  • You can walk backwards in this game by pressing Left and Right at the same time, but only if you're going to the right. Also, every time you turn around, the camera moves, unless you're right up against a wall.

Stage-by-stage commentary

Text and menuing

The text skipping in the storyline is slow for a reason. You actually have to wait about 90-100 frames after the text is done scrolling to skip it. What a bunch of BS.

Oh, but at least all the company logo splash screens at the beginning can be skipped extremely quickly.

1: A New Morning in Toyland

I've got nothing to say about the first level.

2: Off to Toadstool Woods

I've got nothing to say about this shitty car autoscroller either.

3: Visiting A Friend

This is just going to Big Ears's house. At least there's some cool platforming stuff that can be done in this level by going up such tall trees and stuff, but really you could just complete the level by staying right on the ground.

4: Driving to Mr. Sparks

Another shitty autoscroller. This is the first time you see the cows and chickens though.

5: Helping With Repairs

Believe it or not, this level actually feels kind of like a fucking game. But there's still a lot of slow walking in singular directions, but hey, at least there's some PLATFORMING going on. Seriously this level is like a rock that you find beside a pile of dog puke, which is most of the rest of the game.

  • Around 16100 - I do a glitch here on the elevator.
  • 17683 - This is just a cute thing to do, that's all.
  • The fact that you're able to throw all 5 of your muffins/cupcakes before getting on the second elevator is just really sad.

6: Where is Bumpy Dog?

Yeah, literally. You have to go to the right through THE ENTIRE LEVEL!!! FOR LIKE 2-3 MINUTES!!! How could it get any more boring? The glitch at the end of this level is pretty cool though. It's another example of the glitch that happened on the elevator in the previous level.

I mean, was it really necessary to make the level involve THAT MUCH WALKING RIGHT? That whole level could have been summed up to about 30 seconds.

7: Out of Ice-Cream!

And the next level is even worse. Walking around an entire level. The entire long-ass song literally is done looping by the time it can be finished at its fastest. What were they thinking?!

8: The Missing Skittle Children

This level is actually another interesting level. It's interesting because it's an actual challenge. This level IS hard to beat. So, what I did before this level pretty much sums up what I did in this level. I adjusted the routing mainly for the car autoscroller stages before this level so that I had one coin left before getting to the 50th. Why did I do this?

Well, when you get 50 coins in this game, your health resets. The player pretty much HAS to take a lot of damage in this level. It's really difficult to avoid taking damage even when you're using tools. It only wastes a few frames to take damage rather than jumping over people, but you'd be surprised how few times jumping over the clowns and other enemies in this level doesn't work. You'd have to go through hell and high waters to wait until they're in a certain position otherwise, and that'd waste even more time.

Anyway, avoiding certain coins and getting certain coins didn't waste any time at all. It all added up to 49 by this level. This allowed me to take all the damage I needed, as in around the middle of the level I got a single coin and reset all 5 of my healths, whereas if this didn't happen I would have died. So at least there's some routing to be done for this game.

Also I know at one part in the level it looks like I might have accidentally pressed Right for a few frames. It only looks this way. I actually was doing the walking backwards glitch for a few frames right there for entertainment. I mean, hey, I was running out of options for this boring game.

9: Catch the Toyland Express!

Yet another autoscroller, but surprisingly this one isn't so bad. I'm only saying this of course because the road slants. This allows me to go against the slants in ways that make the car weirdly shake. This doesn't waste time, because the car's position just fixes itself back to the original afterwards, and the camera autoscrolls. The levels are done when the camera is done scrolling through them.

10: Special Delivery from Noddy

This is the crappiest excuse for a train level ever. I mean, there aren't even trains, they're train pieces. Anyway, so basically all those train things move automatically. Really, what's necessary is to get all 4 items as fast as possible. I tested several routes for this, and it turns out that the one used in the video is the fastest. It has to do with when the train thing for the flower pot and the kite are at the right positions. This route gets Noddy to go to these when they're at the right positions.

Anyway, there are some unique tricks for this level. If a train thing is moving towards you and you walk on it that slows you down, whereas if you walk on it while it's moving away from you it speeds you up. It's pretty obvious what you do in those kinds of situations. Anyway, when you walk towards a cart, instead of stopping like on a regular wall, you teleport to the top of it. Weird... Anyway, for the ones coming towards you, you can do this and take damage, teleporting you to a further part of the cart (somehow) than normal, but in all this actually wastes time since every time you take damage there's a certain amount of frames you have to wait before you can jump, so you'll just be going really slow because of escalation. It's faster to do a glitch where you jump right before this happens, thus appearing on the top and jumping off it at the quickest frame possible, eliminating all worry necessary about slowing you down because of escalation. There are a few times when for some reason this glitch/trick doesn't work, so we just have to jump on it normally then jump off. I have no explanation for why that is.

11: Special Delivery from Noddy (part 2, apparently not included in the level select)

This is another mostly right-moving level. Pretty boring. Nothing to really say, other than that when you give the last person their gift you have to wait a second before the level ends, which made me do the playaround of throwing a money bag.

12: Into the Dark Woods

Another autoscroller. Thankfully this is the last one in the game. Just like the autoscroller before this, this one has slants in the roads, so I once again abuse that.

13: The Hunt for Dinah Doll's Stall

Last level in the game. To be honest, it's not bad. A lot of it actually feels like you're playing a game. I really like the graphics. It gives you this sort of spooky woods feel. That's pretty much the only part of the game I can actually say is anywhere close to good. Like finding a second rock next to a pile of dog puke.

Anyway...

  • 61140 - The bouncy mushrooms here have a glitch where you can actually bounce on them from under them. That's really strange. This game really wasn't tested well...
  • 63367 for instance - I know it looks like it slows you down, but that's just the camera. The simple answer is it doesn't. It just stops you in midair for a second, so you don't move your Y position for a second, but X you keep moving. It's just that Noddy moves so damn slow it's hard to tell when he's moving and when he's not in midair if you slow the game down.
  • The input for the movie ends when Noddy touches the stall. The game scrolls through the ending text automatically (it actually can do this for other text in the game too, but pressing A sooner is faster). Like I said, there's no credits sequence. Not even a "The End" screen. It just takes you back to the title screen after that text is over.

A few useful RAM addresses

They're both in Combined WRAM, 1 byte, Little Endian, unsigned.

  • 04243A (1-byte) - Health
  • 04242A (2-byte) - Coin count

These are useful to look at sometimes. Especially the coin count one, since the game only tells you how many coins you have until a brief moment after you collect one.

I did have a bunch more at one point, but a flash drive with that on it broke. Oh well, these are really the only ones I found useful at all anyway.

Conclusion

A game like this should not take almost 18 minutes to complete at absolute fastest. 7 and a half minutes for Noddy and the Birthday Party was a perfectly fine amount of time to be seeing that game. But this... 18 minutes is just way, way, way too much. And they really could've taken out autoscrollers in a lot of the game. 4 autoscrollers that are almost exactly the same are just too many.

The future

Don't touch this game. Ever.

Anyway, if you do, just note that there is no 100% category. I've played this game for too long now, and so I know that it doesn't have one. There are no unlockables in the game. The coins are not set values, since they reset every time you collect 51. The junk in the scrapbook isn't unlockables btw, it's always there.

Suggested screenshots

I don't have a particular screenshot preference, but I would recommend doing it in a place in the middle of the game, where one of the glitches happens. It happens on the first elevator in Helping with Repairs, and again in the next level, Where is Bumpy Dog?.

And with that

Thanks for torturing yourself to watch this all the way through if you did, I guess. There's many more TASes of crappy games to come, so don't worry. xy2_ was right. It is possible not to be entertained by a TAS you made yourself. Though I am at least satisfied with it somewhat, especially that it's finally done. You don't even know the willpower it took to sit through this shit.

All the games I ever TAS were probably from at least someone's childhood. If this was your childhood, you probably barely remember this game, since you got bored of it even then. But whatever, at least I didn't have this game. I've never owned a copy. I did watch a Noddy cartoon when I was young though.


ThunderAxe31: Judging.

ThunderAxe31: There is really little to optimize with this game, it's just a matter of adjusting few jumps through the entire game. Rejecting for trivial gameplay.

ThunderAxe31: Since I consider this submission as a borderline case, and my judgment was questioned by multiple users, I decided to reset the submission status to "new".

Mothrayas: Judging.

Mothrayas: I've taken a close look at this movie, and whatever optimizable aspects are in it throughout. Especially early on, the movie starts slow with autoscrollers on a completely fixed timer, as well as "platforming" stages that literally only consist of walking forward without any slowdown factors. However, the game does actually get better at this as the later stages go on, with some genuine platforming technique and optimization present (if still slow and boring). Additionally, the movie did use some clever routing and planning for a few parts. In the end, the small handful of stages where some actual thought and work had to be put into optimization - most notably levels 8, 10, and especially the last level - push this movie over the line in regards to be considered a speedrunnable game.

So, while this movie is quite close to the minimum bar on triviality, it is acceptable, and as such I'm accepting this movie for the Vault.

feos: Pub.


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