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

Submission #6277: Maru's SNES Super Mario All Stars: Super Mario Bros. 3 "warps" in 10:23.51

Console: Super NES
Game name: Super Mario All Stars: Super Mario Bros. 3
Game version: JPN
ROM filename: Super Mario Collection (JPN).sfc
Branch: warps
Emulator: BizHawk 2.2.2
Movie length: 10:23.51
FrameCount: 37472
Re-record count: 16420
Author's real name:
Author's nickname: Maru
Submitter: Maru
Submitted at: 2019-02-24 07:53:34
Text last edited at: 2019-03-07 23:03:17
Text last edited by: feos
Download: Download (23407 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:
SMB3 needs little introduction. Although I was a little hesitant to submit this at first because this is a small improvement and my previous TAS had 3 "meh" votes, I wanted to put a better movie out there. With enough searching, there always seems to be something to squeeze out of these games. That was the case with the NES version of SMB3, and it is the case with SMAS:SMB3 too! The entertainment is also improved in this TAS.


(Link to video)
As always, subtitles are available with the video in order to have a greater understanding of the tricks present in the run. This is a 16 frame improvement to my published run, which comes from tighter optimizations and a faster way of maneuvering by piranha plants in the World 8 stages.

Using left+right allows Mario to speed up to 64, which is significantly greater than running with P-Speed, which is 56. Although Mario's speed (00008B) with left+right shows up as 66 on the RAM watch, this is inaccurate. Left+right running is a full 14% faster than running with P-Speed, and it is the sole reason why the TAS of this game is faster than the TAS of the NES version. In addition, left+right allows Mario to accelerate to top speed significantly faster, which makes it possible to get by areas that take more time to build P-Speed in much quicker.

World 1:

While World 1 was redone, there were no improvements over the published run. The published run's World 1 was already very optimized in a struggle to reach faster two frame windows. If you recall from my previous submission, the two frame framerule is unique to SMAS:SMB3 games. This means that you may have to an improve a level by at least two frames to get good hammer brother movements, or you may need to lose time in two frame intervals to manipulate the hammer brothers.

In 1-1, the mushroom is grabbed with a speed (00008B) of 16. Meanwhile, the NES TAS can only grab the mushroom with a maximum speed of 9. It is very important to grab the mushroom with as much speed as possible so that Mario can clear the pit immediately after he can move again.

In 1-2, left+right makes it unnecessary to slide. This is a relatively straightforward level. Good hammer brother luck means that I do not have to delay any frames in this level. It is good that my fast mushroom grab in 1-1 was compatible with good hammer brother movements. Otherwise, I would've needed to lose an additional 6 or 8 frames in this level to manipulate the hammer brothers. Exiting 1-2, Mario has two different cards, a flower from 1-1 and a star from 1-2. This is beneficial because it prevents having to manipulate the card in 8-1, which may or may not require time delays.

The leaf grab in 1-3 is quite precise. While I didn't grab the leaf as far to the right as I could, this method optimizes the speed that I grab the leaf with, ultimately making it the fastest option. I grab the leaf with a speed of 28. Nothing else that I tested came close. For comparison, the NES TAS grabs the leaf with a speed of 10. Like my previous TAS, I utilize the duck jump to the white block to start the white block timer earlier. One thing that I did do differently, however, is use the two frame framerule to show off an entertaining trick with a shell. I used a trick called the shell ninja which was found by andymac all the way back in 2010. This trick barely made it on time for the two frame framerule, but it is much more entertaining than running to the toad house. It's worth mentioning that I would've had to delay several frames if I was only a "framerule" slower in this level.

1-F features a faster first room compared to my published run, but I had to lose the time that I gained to the hammer brothers. I delay frames in the warp whistle room because of that. Both 1-3 and 1-F have significant differences compared to the NES TAS.

World 8:

The level entrance to 8-Tank was delayed by one frame in order to displace the two frame window upon entering the pipe at the end of the level by one frame. This allows me to get the optimal Boomerang Bro pattern for this game earlier. If I did not do that, I would need to wait several frames on top of the pipe to get the fastest Boomerang Bro pattern.

I decided to try to accomplish something that has never been done in an SMB3 TAS before, which was to get to 99 lives in a single autoscroller without losing time. The result was quite satisfying in the end, as after the last jump on the cannonball at the end, Mario had obtained exactly 99 lives. Even with left+right, Mario needs to clip into the second to last tank instead of the last tank containing the pipe. It is impossible to get as far ahead of the screen as possible by clipping into the last tank, and it ends up being a couple of frames slower. Contrary to the NES version, the optimal boomerang bro pattern in this game is the one where the boomerang bro delays throwing the boomerang while moving forward. With this pattern, it is possible for Mario to stomp on the boomerang bro before he throws the boomerang, allowing the chest to spawn earlier.

Input for 8-Navy and 8-Airship were reused from my previous run. I was satisfied with the entertainment present in those autoscrollers.

The 8-Airship boss fight was improved by two frames. Boom-Boom boss fights are actually quite difficult to optimize in this version because Mario travels faster than his fireballs and also approaches Boom-Boom much faster, making the optimal boss fight strategy less intuitive compared to the NES TAS. In the NES TAS, holding right at low speeds allows Mario to dig into the edge of the screen, but that is not possible in this version. The last jump did push Mario ahead of the screen a little bit. Incidentally, Mario was able to enter the pipe with a speed of 17, which is interesting because he is normally limited to a speed of 15 because the autoscroller scrolls at 15/16 pixels per frame.

8-1 was improved by four frames. Utilizing the hitbox abuse strategy that I found for the NES TAS (because ducking reduces Mario's hitbox for a frame), I was able to get by the first piranha plant faster. Additional time was saved with better speed conservation down the chute at the beginning of the level. Block clipping is not as effective in this game as it is in the NES version, mainly because you need to tap left once Mario is in the block in order to be able to continue running. Otherwise, the block will catch Mario and stop Mario's speed dead.

8-2 was improved by two frames with the hitbox abuse strategy. At this point, we were about a second and a half behind the NES TAS. We pull ahead of the NES TAS by about half a second after the end of the next level.

The World 8 Fortress route clips through the entire blue room. While the fastest way of reaching the spike room is to the enter the P-Switch doors immediately after hitting the P-Switch, the P-Switch timer still has to run out. The longer transition lag after entering doors on SMAS:SMB3 prolongs the time that it takes for the P-Switch to run out. With this route, the P-Switch runs out by the time Mario reaches the spike room. The route is similar to the NES TAS route in the way that it is slower than the normal route to the spike room, but it makes up that time by getting through the spike room a lot faster. Several areas of the level were improved compared to my last TAS, but they were unfortunately eaten by bad acceleration framerule luck. Acceleration framerules still apply to this game. I also tested some crazy ideas like hitting the P-Switch and then going back to grab the stars, which would ultimately allow me to kill Boom-Boom with a star (one of two levels where it is possible in this game), but it turned out to be about 80-90 frames slower. The only reason this route is faster is because left+right allows Mario to accelerate very quickly near the area where a leaf powerup is available.

8-Tank2 input was primarily reused from my previous run. I did, however, throw the bob-omb prior to performing the bob-omb glitch earlier. The bob-omb glitch provides an easy way of getting 1-ups by stomping a bob-omb on the frame it stops walking. The reason why the bob-omb at the beginning of the level was thrown earlier was to manipulate Bowser's y-subpixel. There's about a 25% chance of getting a bad Bowser y-subpixel, which will result in one frame being lost to the Bowser fight at the end of the TAS.

After 8-Tank2, this TAS had lost the lead that it gained to the NES TAS because of the extra transition delays. However, it regains that time back in Bowser's Castle. This comes from not having to walljump after entering the thwomp room. In addition, the statue room can be maneuvered much faster compared to the NES version. Fewer delays were needed to manipulate the Bowser pattern this time. Recall that Bowser needs to hop six times and be defeated as he is hopping in order to result in a much lower death bounce.

Improvements:

I still wish I had a good grasp of mechanics relating to lag in this game. I noticed that I was getting an extra frame of transition lag upon exiting levels starting with 8-1. I had found the memory addresses for score in this game, which is located at 000715-000717. The memory locations in this game seem to be quite predictable. However, after changing the score to 0 to see if anything happened, there was no change.


Masterjun: Judging.

Masterjun: Accepting as an improvement to the previous run.

feos: Pub.


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