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

Submission #5963: Jigwally's Genesis Chester Cheetah: Wild Wild Quest in 09:45.69

Console: Sega Genesis
Game name: Chester Cheetah: Wild Wild Quest
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Chester Cheetah 2 - Wild Wild Quest (U) [!].bin
Branch:
Emulator: BizHawk 2.2.2
Movie length: 09:45.69
FrameCount: 35096
Re-record count: 13799
Author's real name: Basil Gruber
Author's nickname: Jigwally
Submitter: Jigwally
Submitted at: 2018-05-09 05:10:02
Text last edited at: 2018-05-12 12:39:37
Text last edited by: feos
Download: Download (4325 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:
- Uses easiest difficulty

- Genre: Platform

NOTE: Last minute updates saved an extra 24 frames, from a better Boss 4 fight and Omahog/Wall Up stages.

TASed on BizHawk 2.2.2 with Genplus-gx core.

This is an improvement of 1:45.136 (6300 frames) from my unpublished Hard difficulty run. This is mostly due to shorter boss fights, but there are also multiple new optimizations. Namely, I discovered the subpixel values and how to manipulate my run speed by jumping from slopes.

Because all the bosses were faster & easier, I just compared frame counts for the regular stages:

Euphreaka: -28 frames

Not-So-Great Falls: -39 frames

Lostin: -258 frames (!!!)

Un-Clearwater: -15 frames

Little Shock: -29 frames

Omahog: -28 frames

Wall Up: +3 frames :(

Numb: -26 frames

Quakersfield: -2 frames

Important RAM values: 1004 x-pos rough 1005 x-pos "true" 1008 y-pos rough 1009 y-pos "true" 101E x-vel rough 101F x-vel "true" 1002 y-vel rough 1023 y-vel "true" 1076/10F6/10B6 boss hits (varies)

There is a general value for x/y positions and velocities + a more exact value that says the exact subpixel value.

General info:

The main difference between difficulty settings is the number of hits it takes to kill bosses. However, enemy speed is also changed (Hard = fastest enemies). This actually resulted in different routing than my unpublished Hard TAS. Some enemies actually became harder to dodge on Easy than on Hard.

Goal is to get the map in every level, then defeat the boss.

Chester is normally fastest while running, and slows down on slopes. However if I jump from a slanted surface, I will attain a velocity slightly faster than normal. Jumping from an upward slope is a slight improvement, jumping from a downward slope is a more significant boost. The exact velocity you gain seems to vary & is specific to the slope.

In addition, for whatever reason after bouncing on a flat surface from one of these sped-up jumps, if I jump again at the first possible frame I will attain another slight velocity boost. I can maintain this velocity boost as long as I continually jump from my landings on the first possible frame.

Underwater, the physics are different. Namely, you move much slower during jumps than you do running on the ground. Therefore I try to stay out of the water for as long as I can, and when I finally get in the water I try to stay on the ground as much as possible. Also, while underwater, you drop faster during your running animation than you do by holding down, unlike above water.

After landing from jumps onto a flat surface Chester usually does a short bounce. I try to turn this to my advantage whenever possible, such as dragging out a speed boost slightly longer.

Upon landing after bouncing on an enemy Chester has to start his running animation again, so I avoid jumping on enemies if I can. High jump is always the same height & is necessary to break through blocks from below. Chester can "swim" several times to gain extra height in mid air. This counter resets after bouncing on an enemy. I use this repeatedly in the run to help hit bosses on the first possible frame. He can also grab onto the sides of platforms & pull himself up. Pressing down causes Chester to fall a little bit faster. It's possible in some cases to despawn enemies or even items like the map by approaching them in a certain direction.

Stage comments:

EUPHREAKA Shaved lots of time off after discovering ramp speed manipulation.

NOT-SO-GREAT FALLS Saved time with ramp speed, but because the final Hog enemy moves slower on Easy I had to wait to maneuver around him, losing some time. Also of note: if I initiate the high jump as soon as possible in this level it actually despawns the map. I have to make sure to be a little further to the right first. As you can see at the end there's a quirk where you can be in the "middle" of a platform after jumping from below.

The plane boss is manipulated to keep appearing from the same side so that I can use air swims to repeatedly hit it. For the very last hit, landing on the plane as soon as possible actually wastes time because you have to wait for the dead boss to slowly move off-screen before the fight actually ends. I instead wait to hit him on the most optimal frame.

LOSTIN I came up with a completely different route for this level, avoiding going in the water for as long as possible. Unlike the Hard run, the final fish enemy is not easily avoidable, so I kill it. However, I shaved off additional time with my new understanding of water physics. Note: for the final climb to the side of the ship, Chester swims faster up if he's underwater than if he's in the air, so I wait a little bit for him to be underwater before swimming up.

UN-CLEARWATER With the right movement I despawned one of the two crocodile enemies at the very end of the stage.

This boss has three hitboxes: the two larger heads and the smaller head on top. Hitting the smaller head causes the boss to shoot projectiles that take too much time to avoid. It normally takes many more hits on the larger heads total to kill this boss. However if you accumulate 7 hits on the larger heads and then hit the top head for the 8th hit he will instantly die. This is an improvement over the RTA run which takes two cycles!

LITTLE SHOCK

Made the most boring boss in the game slightly less boring with Wacky Antics (not that wacky).

OMAHOG

Despawned a scarecrow enemy before the barn, plus a pitchfork hazard on the first cow platform. After bouncing on the pig enemies right before the map, I had to wait several frames before doing the high jump to avoid a softlock from occurring. (The only one I've ever had happen to me) Caused noticeable lag by spawning the maximum number of bombs on the boss.

I'm pretty sure Chester's hitbox extends further than usual while he's running, which means you can hit the boss while he's further offscreen if you bounce on him mid-run.

WALL UP

The boulders gave me way more trouble on Easy than Hard for some reason. I ended up opting to avoid them entirely by going over them both which was disappointing. As a result this was the one stage that ended up being slower than my Hard TAS.

This boss is really as easy as he looks.

NUMB

Had a hard time staying underneath the hitbox for the boss's spiked ball attack.

QUAKERSFIELD

Another careful use of the bounce to get the map.

I think I managed to get hits 2 & 3 on the boss earlier somehow, by doing air swims close to the ground. Usually you have to wait for the boss to come further onto the screen.

RALLY I was able to end the movie early by orienting myself such that Chester continues bouncing automatically. This time I managed to do it using only three frames of input, ending the movie a fair bit earlier!

Possible improvements:

Test more on despawning certain enemies. It's possible to enact a zip glitch by becoming embedded in a wall, but I haven't found anywhere to use this yet. Mostly because I've only found about two places to do it.

Temporary encode: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGMYkoymSFw


ThunderAxe31: Claiming for judgment.

ThunderAxe31: File replaced with a 4-frame improvement.

ThunderAxe31: File replaced with a 20-frame improvement.

ThunderAxe31: We usually require the hardest difficulty for playing games, but it's not a rigid rule and there are cases in which we consider this unnecessary. For this game the hardest difficulty does not feature any extra content compared to the other two difficulties available; it only affects the movement speed of enemies and the amount of health points of bosses. For some games having more aggressive enemies or sturdier bosses would result in more interesting and complex TASing strategies, like for Metal Slug games; however, this is not the case for the game used for this submission, for which the different enemy speed simply results in slightly different (sometimes harder, sometimes easier) solutions, and the larger boss health only introduces more repetitiveness. For these reason, I consider the easiest difficulty acceptable for this game.

Compared to the previous submission, this movie features much less repetitiveness thanks to the use of the easiest difficulty, which makes it much more enjoyable to watch. The audience feedback was also more positive. Accepting for Moons.

feos: Pub.


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