TASVideos

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

Submission #5850: MUGG's DOS Star Trek: 25th Anniversary in 13:33.18

Console: DOS
Game name: Star Trek: 25th Anniversary
Game version: any v1.0
ROM filename: STARTREK.EXE
Branch:
Emulator: JPC-rr v11.2 (Enhanced)
Movie length: 13:33.18
FrameCount: 48791
Re-record count: 9382
Author's real name: Christoph H.
Author's nickname: MUGG
Submitter: mugg
Submitted at: 2018-03-11 13:59:36
Text last edited at: 2018-04-22 11:15:01
Text last edited by: fsvgm777
Download: Download (124152 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:

(Link to video)

This point & click adventure game released in 1992 for DOS features the original Star Trek crew (Kirk, Spock, McCoy and redshirt). You play through seven episodes, each assigning you with a mission that you need to complete in order to go on with the next mission.

This game is considered one of the best games of its time, and one of the best Star Trek games. The game received a sequel Star Trek: Judgement Rites that offers more episodes and world-exploring. If you do not want to play but are interested, I recommend watching one of the longplays on Youtube.


Objectives

  • Uses death/Takes damage to save time
    • I let my ship get beaten in the beginning tutorial
    • Redshirt is killed in mission 5
  • Genre: Adventure
  • Emulator used: Enhanced JPC-rr v11.2


Getting the game to run

Here I explain how to build the game image and set up JPC-rr to run the game.

  1. Obtain the game (Floppy version)
  2. In JPC-rr, go to Drives->Import Image
    The following files must be included:

    DATA.001
    DATA.DIR
    DATA.RUN
    INTRPLAY.CFG
    SAVEGAME.NEW
    SETUP.EXE
    STARTREK.EXE

    Set Image Type: Hard Disk
    Set Tracks to 64 (I did this because I assumed it would help with performance/memory).
    Save the game image.
  3. System->Assemble
    Fda image: FreeDOS
    Fdd image: Game image

    Keep everything as is and click Assemble.
  4. System->Start
  5. Load the movie


Version choice

Two versions exist, Floppy and CD-ROM.

Floppy Disk CD-ROM
* Released in 1992
* Very short mission 7
* Released in 1993
* Features improved sounds / voices
* In response to fans complaining, mission 7 has been extended

The Floppy version was chosen for this run for the following reasons:

  1. The CD-DA audio is not emulated in JPC-rr,
  2. getting the CD version to run is difficult (but not impossible). It requires a FreeDOS image that installs the CD-ROM driver, see here for more details.
  3. the Floppy version has a shorter final mission. The wikipedia article claims that the CD version lets you choose whether you want to play the long or the short version of the mission, but I have not come across such a choice option in any of my CD playthroughs... If it is discovered that you can play the short version, and JPC-rr can one day emulate CD-DA audio, then the CD version should definitely be used.


Run Comments

I've been interested in TASing DOS games for a very long time but JPC-rr has been difficult for me to handle (not knowing if audio is working, not knowing how to create a video, having to use lua to move the mouse cursor). This has been a very frustrating experience and I gave up attempt after attempt.

But recently c-square has hinted me towards his enhanced JPC-rr that made handling the mouse cursor very trivial to do. He and DrD2k9 helped me with getting everything up and running - much thanks to them!

One major problem I ran into was getting sound to work properly. It took a while until I figured out that I need to create dump files of the BIOS section and the game seperately.

I chose Star Trek as my first DOS TAS due to the game's simple nature, it is easy to optimize movement and not many actions are required in addition to controlling the mouse.

During making this run, I found a large amount of interesting glitches, including some dialogue skips that unfortunately almost always lead to dead-ends. I will detail the useful glitches in a section below.


Level Comments

The game starts with a tutorial battle that I lose on purpose.

Some missions feature ship to ship combat. I abuse the cooldown trick (pause the game between shots) to destroy ships quickly.

Episode 1: Demon World

Settlers belonging to a religious sect have reported being attacked by "Demons" near their mines. Kirk must discover the truth behind these "Demons".

We obtain the Klingon's hand and quickly make it through the mine, not caring about the dying miner and the other sick person. After giving the metal key to the creature, the mission ends.

Episode 2: Hijacked

The USS Masada has not reported in. Upon investigation, The Enterprise discovers that the ship has been captured by Elasi Pirates who are holding the crew hostage. Kirk must discover a way to recover the ship and crew unharmed.

We anger the Elasi Captain, causing him to kill hostage after hostage. After five hostages are killed, Starfleet contacts you and tells you your behavior will be reviewed for disciplinary action and you go to the next episode.

Episode 3: Love's Labour Jeopardized

Romulans have crossed the Neutral Zone and attacked the Federation Research Station Ark 7. Unfortunately, the attack has created a biohazard situation that Enterprise crew must deal with, as well as the Romulans.

We play through this mission normally for the most part, creating the TLTDH gas to render the Romulans unconscious and creating a cure against the Oroborus virus. Funnily, the TAS is going so fast that Kirk doesn't manage to untie Carol in the end.

Episode 4: Another Fine Mess

When responding to a distress call from a ship under attack by pirates, the Enterprise discovers none other than Harry Mudd is involved. He is traced to a derelict alien spacecraft. The Enterprise crew must discover the connection between the derelict, the pirates and Mudd.

We do not give a damn about the ship, the pirates and Mudd and just do whatever actions necessary to allow us to beam back to the Enterprise.

Episode 5: Feathered Serpent

A Klingon battle fleet is about to cross into Federation space, in pursuit of a "War Criminal". The Enterprise must find this "War Criminal" to prevent a war.

The war criminal named Quetzelcoatl is a demi-god who has spread his philosophy of peace to the nearby Klingon planet Hrakkour, which caused Admiral Vlict, commander of the Klingon fleet, to kill off life on Hrakkour due to the "danger" posed by Quetzelcoatl's philosophy.

After Quetzelcoatl makes us undergo a series of trials, we would help him and save him from death by Klingon "justice". But in this run we just hand him over and peace out.

Episode 6: That Old Devil Moon

Strange power readings have been detected from a large asteroid approaching a pre-warp star system. The Enterprise discovers an ancient nuclear missile base that does not realize that the war ended 1000 years earlier, and must prevent it from destroying the native civilization a second time.

This mission is pretty straight-forward and we play through it normally.

Episode 7: Vengeance

The Enterprise, responding to a distress call from the USS Republic, finds it nearly destroyed. Kirk must figure out what destroyed the ship and stop those responsible from striking again.

We don't give a damn and beam right back to the Enterprise.

In the final battle with Breddell and his Enterprise II, I had a bit of trouble optimizing shots but I managed to make it work. My final ranking is 17% which is the worst known possible score ("Pathetic Kirk, go practise or the Enterprise will end up decommissioned soon.").


Techniques and Glitches

I posted about all of my finds on the Game Resource page or the Forum topic. Only the useful tricks will be listed here:

Ship Projectile Trick
You can normally fire the photon shots once every 1.5 sec or so, and the Phaser every 0.8 sec or so. During the downtime, you can pause the game (done in this run by pressing K) and wait until the weapon is ready again. This allows you to completely destroy ships before they can escape from your view. This trick has been found by CDiFan237 and me independently.

Use other crew members
You can make your crew members perform a simple "use" action, allowing you to open something or use a machine's controls. This allows two things going on at the same time.

Use of hotkeys
While on a planet or station, you can press Escape or right-click (I believe) to bring up a verb menu. But you can also:
press L to get the "Look" cursor,
U to get the "Use" cursor,
W to get the "Walk" cursor,
G to get the "Get" cursor and
T to get the "Talk" cursor directly.

If you have the Use cursor, you can press I to go to your inventory instantly.

While in the ship, you can:
press N to go to the star map,
V to go into first person view,
K to bring up Kirk's menu, allowing you to beam over or save the game,
W to arm weapons,
S to raise shields,
O to orbit a planet,
H to hail a nearby ship/station, ...

Having perfect control over these keys speeds things up a lot in the TAS.

Pathing
When clicking on a door, Kirk may not walk directly to it but go a point in a room and then change direction. It is more optimal to make Kirk go to the door in an as straight as possible way, by first clicking on a point on the floor and then on the door.

Do an action during waiting time
In the ship, there are often instances where you have to wait 2 seconds before the next message shows up. The hotkeys will be disabled. But pressing F3 (which switches the cursor from the window to your crew) and clicking on your crew will still allow you to do things such as beaming, orbiting a planet, etc. In some instances this can skip dialogue and save time, in other instances beaming or orbiting does nothing at all.

This trick was discovered late into the run, at the end of mission 5, and therefore it could have uses earlier in the game that haven't been discovered yet (I'd like to look into this soon).


Links


Thanks

  • slamo, Ilari, c-square, DrD2k9 for their thorough help and work.
  • Rasitalon for his speedrun. It was thanks to him that I learned about being able to press I after pressing U (in order to quickly select items to use).
  • L-1011 Widebody for his "The Adventures of Captain James T. Jerkface" video series and other Star Trek videos.
  • Everyone I forgot

I'm interested in running more DOS games in the future!


Mothrayas: Judging.

Mothrayas: The movie looks well enough made. Entertainment-wise, viewer response was not great, with the movie generally looking rather slow and uneventful. Accepting for the Vault.

fsvgm777: Processing (soon(tm


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