TASVideos

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

Submission #6049: Woops's PSX Tomb Raider Chronicles in 1:12:56.26

Console: Sony PlayStation
Game name: Tomb Raider Chronicles
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Tomb Raider Chronicles (USA).bin
Branch:
Emulator: Bizhawk 1.13.1
Movie length: 1:12:56.26
FrameCount: 259481
Re-record count: 34379
Author's real name:
Author's nickname: Woops
Submitter: Woops
Submitted at: 2018-07-20 20:14:04
Intended tier: Moons
Text last edited at: 2018-08-11 16:35:18
Text last edited by: feos
Download: Download (202524 bytes)
Status: publication underway
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Author's comments and explanations:
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLo9vdI_FgEQe_DZ9T_H5lPofQzwruH2rf

Game objectives

  • Emulator used: BizHawk-1.13.1
  • Game version : NTSC (as far as i know only 1 NTSC version of this game exists)
  • BIOS : SCPH1001.BIN
  • Heavy glitch abuse
  • Aims for ingame time instead of real time

About the game

The fifth Tomb Raider game released and the last using the "classic" engine. the game takes place after the story of Tomb Raider 4, where Lara dies. Some of Lara's close friends are discussing four of her past adventures. the adventures take place in Rome,Russia,Ireland and the VCI headquarters in New York.

Comments

Differences between PSX and PC versions

There are a few differences between the PSX and PC versions of the game which lead to a completely different route on some levels.

  • Longer loading times on PSX
  • a glitch known as ALT (Advanced Look Triggering) doesn't work on PSX. ALT allows triggering events (such as the end of a level) by embedding in a wall and looking at a trigger with the binoculars or lasersight. could have saved some minutes .
  • a glitch on PC that allows having infinite medipacks by abusing the game's hotkeys. could have saved some time by not having to pickup medipacks and by catching fire at certain occasions. (catching fire skips the lasers in the VCI section which saves some time).
  • Having to go into the inventory to take medipacks. and since the ingame timer doesn't stop in the inventory, this loses time and is a disadvantage over the PC version which has keyboard hotkeys.

Aims for ingame time instead of real time

The game runs at 30 fps, so usually 1 in-game frame = 2 real time frame. On laggy places, the game may need more real time frame to advance to the next in-game frame (although this does not happen much in this game as the developers really optimized the engine and levels, I have observed it in a couple of large places such as The Base). although no specific glitches were used in favour of getting a better ingame time,Using ingame time instead of real time made the comparison with the RTA/IL runs easier.

Speed and movement

Movement Speed (RAM)
Walking 15
Crawling 16
Running 47
Standing jump 50
Swimming 50
Sliding 50
Running jump 75
Sprint 47-82
Sprint Roll 82-100-47

As you can see, the Sprint Roll is the fastest way to move.However, That doesn't mean it's faster to do it instead of sprinting. Because sprinting has a consistent 82 speed, and when you start a sprint roll it adds 2 speed values each frame untill it reaches 100 for 2 frames , then starts decreasing 1-2 values each frame untill it reaches 47 (running animation), Making a consistent sprint way faster than doing a sprint roll. But note that a sprint roll can go down slopes, which is faster than sliding or jumping over/at the slope. it is also faster to do a sprint roll if Lara was going to fall off an edge, because Lara's speed during falls stays the same as the last frame she took off the ledge at, and with a sprint roll that's usually 98-100, better than sprinting off the edge with 82 speed.

Now it is important to note that these are the speeds in the RAM. In practice, the game rounds Lara's coordinates (X, Y, Z) because it only accepts integers. It means that depending if it rounds up or rounds down, Lara's true speed will be a little bit higher or smaller than the RAM speed.

When Lara is turning, her rotation speed increases by 45 each frame, until it caps to 1092 (on the ground) or 182 (in the air).However, when she is holding her guns (must be fully equipped) and turning on the spot, her rotation speed will reach 1092 in 3 frames (45-90-1092). While swimming, rotation speed adds 45 each frame untill to caps at 728.

Glitches and tricks

I can not describe every glitch here, only the most common ones used in this TAS. For the full list of glitches in Tomb Raider games, I suggest you look at this page: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1OfmtA7uewrFNc-dE6_lddmSLjC2Pr6axIuY8GYu4kxY/edit

  • Corner bug : by clipping into a corner at a ~45 angle, Lara gets teleported to the top of that corner. If no walkable ground is on top of that corner Lara will freeze in place.

  • Flare Cancel : When throwing a flare during a long fall, the "Throw Flare" animation overrides Lara's stumble animation when she arrives. allowing her to move as soon as she falls. Flare cancels do NOT prevent Lara from taking damage/Dying.

  • Extended Sprint : Not all frames of Lara's sprint animation require the sprint button to be pressed to continue sprinting. in fact only a few frames require it pressed (only 1-2 frames with sprint button pressed between 7-8 frame gaps of not needing it pressed). unfortunately Lara can't turn without the sprint button pressed.

  • Revolver Rapid Fire : When in LaserSight the revolver can shoot at a very fast rate. when the revolver shoots release for one frame and hold for another perpetually, this makes it shoot at a rate faster than an Uzis!

  • Pistol Rapid Fire : while in LaserSight, selecting the pistols (have to manually exit the inventory) makes it fire at Uzi rate.

  • Aim Cancel : with the shotgun, turning so Lara loses her aim then turning back to make her regain it allows her to shoot at a faster rate.

  • Flare Wall Bug : Picking a flare up while crouched moves Lara behind the flare, so if a flare was placed near a wall and Lara picks it up crouched facing back to the wall it embeds her in it. useful for keyhole glitches.

  • Keyhole Glitch : an extremely useful glitch that allows Lara to place keys and puzzle items without actually having them! works when you use a flare to embed behind a keyhole then picking it up. basically the game says "Yes" for Lara to move to pickup the flare, but the puzzle/keyhole's hitbox interferes with the flare, so Lara does the "Yes" to the puzzle/keyhole instead (the game normally says "No" to Lara when she tries to interact with the puzzle/keyhole without having the correct item, the flare forces a "Yes"). Even works on card readers in Russia!

  • Flare Jump : A glitch that happens when you embed in a wall using a flare, then jumping while picking it up. It launches Lara a huge distance forwards ignoring all geometry and objects. useful for skipping doors/triggers.

  • Ledge Bug : a glitch that allows Lara to climb a ledge on a slope. extremely useful in Ireland (almost completely skips two levels!)

  • as you can see, the most game breaking glitches in this game require flares. and flares are only available in Rome and Russia. in fact only 3 flares are available in Russia. there are some more uses of Flare jumps and Keyhole skips in Russia but I had to cut them down and use the 3 that save the most time. Flares weren't an issue in Rome because a flare pack is available at the beginning.

Stage by stage comments

Trajan's Market

on PC, ALT could be used to finish this level in 30 seconds instead of 3 minutes.

Sinking Submarine

for some reason, being on fire overrides a 1:30 minute cutscene's trigger. but the closest Fire requires 3 medipacks to reach the trigger without dying, and I only have 1 Large and 3 smalls by default , so I had to pickup an Extra large in The Submarine to be able to skip the cutscene.

Labyrinth

on PC, a trigger bug (PC only bug-related to ALT) can be used to skip a huge part of this level. (~2 minutes disadvantage on PSX)

13th floor

on PC, a trigger bug allows this level to be completed in under a minute, instead of 6 minutes on PSX.

Escape with the Iris

Using Fire could have saved over a minute on this level because it skips the lasers.However, there isn't anywhere to extinguish the fire, making it only useful on PC.

Red Alert!

same as Escape with the Iris, Fire could have been used to go through the lasers faster, but again there isn't anywhere to extinguish the fire.

  • Final ingame time is 01:07:43.03 (1 hour, 7 minutes, 43 seconds and 1 frame)

Improvement over the old TAS

  • Improves about 8 minutes over the old TAS (8 minutes in real time, i don't know what the final ingame time was for the old TAS).
  • Most of the improvement comes from the discovery of the Keyhole glitch and Flare jumps, but the whole science of what's faster has changed dramatically over the years, so the old TAS used some old ideas. Those were fixed in this TAS.

Special Thanks

  • The Tomb Runner discord for their advice and suggestions while I was making this TAS. without them there would be no TAS.
  • Wyster's amazing old TAS. it helped a lot with the routing and pickups.
  • Lapogne36 for helping me write this.
  • Useless-_-Assassin for sticking by me and keeping me motivated while I was making the TAS.

suggested screenshot

Frame 17535 "You want to try the back pockets?"


Memory: Claiming for judging

Memory: Optimization seems good and the movie syncs.

So... the way this movie starts out is absolutely fantastic. Lara does a bunch of glitches ranging from unlocking a door by sticking a gun in the keyhole (I think this might be a good screenshot if the above does not work), to the "flare jumps" which appear to just send Lara across the map. Unfortunately later on, less flares appear and the game gets bogged down by cutscenes, but I still really enjoyed it overall and so did the audience. These new glitches really helped the entertainment over the currently published TAS which averaged a 5.1 entertainment rating.

This movie thankfully does not to appear to suffer as much as Tomb Raider III when it comes to being dark so publishers you don't have to worry so much about this one.

Accepting to Moons as an improvement to the currently published TAS.

feos: Pub.


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