TASVideos

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

Submission #5866: slamo's DOS Duke Nukem: Episode 3 - Trapped in the Future! in 06:48.15

Console: DOS
Game name: Duke Nukem: Episode 3 - Trapped in the Future!
Game version: unknown
ROM filename: DN3.EXE
Branch:
Emulator: JPC-rr r11.8 rc2
Movie length: 06:48.15
FrameCount: 24489
Re-record count: 1826
Author's real name: MRT
Author's nickname: slamo
Submitter: slamo
Submitted at: 2018-03-18 17:59:48
Text last edited at: 2018-04-30 06:52:03
Text last edited by: feos
Download: Download (76699 bytes)
Status: published
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(Link to video)

Movie Information

  • Emulator: JPC-RR r11.8 rc2
  • Takes damage to save time
  • Genre: Platform

Image information can be found in the movie file, as I feel it's too long to post here. It uses an unmodified installation of registered version 2.0, which contains the files from all 3 episodes. This is the exact same image as the one used in my episode 2 run: http://tasvideos.org/5183S.html

In this episode, Duke follows Dr. Proton into the future to stop him once and for all.

Mechanics

There is nothing complicated about the physics of this game. There is no acceleration in the x-direction and very little to speak of in the y-direction. The only movement gimmick is conveyer belts that appear in some levels, which double your movement speed when running along them and completely stopping you when running against them. Duke has a fixed jump height (3 tiles normally, 4 tiles with jump boots) with two ways to shorten it: bump your head on a ceiling or get hurt. The jump height is often a bottleneck while platforming so these jump shortening techniques are used as frequently as possible.

Duke can only take 8 hits and his health doesn't get reset when starting a level. There are health pickups scattered throughout the levels, with soda cans healing 1 unit, chicken healing 1 unit (2 if shot), and atomic health completely healing Duke. Planning which health to pick up and which damage to take is the most difficult part of this run.

By default, only one bullet can appear on the screen at a time, but more can be added by picking up extra guns for a maximum of 4 bullets. Again, the value of picking one of these up has to be weighed along with the amount of time it costs to pick up.

Level Comments

Level 1

Like most first levels, pretty simple.

Level 2

A couple small routing options here. After getting the access card, it's a little faster to fall off the tower instead of going back down the elevator shaft. Also, it's possible to jump over the red-walled building and get in through a back way, but it's a little better to go in through the front. In the front of the building, a trigger is skipped for some Dr. Proton dialogue, saving some time.

Level 3

Health starts to become a serious issue in this level, but we can just barely get away with avoiding off-path health for now. The dangerousness is very apparent in the last section, where Duke just stands inside a bouncing mine and abuses invincibility frames with no health left while taking down a barrier.

I actually discovered a useless glitch while TASing this: if you exit a level and die on the same frame, you get transported to the blue hallway and die there instead. Because the game makes a checkpoint at the start of each level and remembers the health you had, you get stuck in an endless loop of respawning in the blue hallway and dying again, effectively softlocking the game and ending your playthrough.

Level 4

Some on-path health makes this level survivable, but not by much. After getting the jumping shoes, it's a little faster to get to some higher ground and run through the bouncing mines, not to mention you get more health out of it.

Level 5

Having some patience with the low health situation and avoiding off-path health finally pays off. This level is loaded with free soda cans, and even though there are also a ton of enemies, we can shoot them fast enough to get them out of the way. There's an atomic health right next to the green key, but it's not even needed anymore and we can save the frames. We end up with full health and a free gun upgrade out of this level.

Level 6

A fairly typical level for this episode with some significant backtracking. We get the robotic hand, which is just barely not skippable.

Level 7

Welcome to the worst level in the game. It's bad in two aspects: for one, there's a lot of backtracking. There's also a ton of enemies and hazards in the way with no way to get around them without some time loss. We compromise by grabbing the first off-path health of the run. The only major routing option here is which way to get down to the red keypad.

Level 8

Tons of enemies in the way here, and thanks to TAS firing they're handled well. The level designer thought it would be a good idea to stuff 17 Energizer bunnies into one room. Health is basically a wash in this level because of the two roast chickens.

Level 9

The robotic hand pad can be skipped, which I believe was intentionally designed that way. The blue bridge has to be jumped on twice to collapse it. We're still walking on a tightrope with health, but there's gonne be just enough to make it to the next level.

Level 10

The level designer again has a thing for spamming rabbits. Another slightly off-path health pickup, an atomic health, removes any of the tension for the rest of the run. Dr. Proton is finally killed and Duke can go home and watch Oprah again.

Thanks

  • CapnClever: His speedrun was a good reference for the routing.

Nach: Not much response on this one, but what response there was has been positive. I find the run mildly entertaining. Accepting to moons as first run for this game.

feos: I'm on XPx86 due to defrag, so grabbing this one before I start saturn.


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