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

Submission #6388: Lobsterzelda's A2600 Smurfs: Rescue in Gargamel's Castle in 03:32.22

Console: Atari 2600
Game name: Smurfs: Rescue in Gargamel's Castle
Game version: USA
ROM filename: Smurfs - Rescue in Gargamel's Castle (1982) (Coleco).a26 2
Emulator: BizHawk 2.3.1
Movie length: 03:32.22
FrameCount: 12717
Re-record count: 8100
Author's real name:
Author's nickname: Lobsterzelda
Submitter: Lobsterzelda
Submitted at: 2019-05-14 09:54:26
Text last edited at: 2019-06-28 22:50:42
Text last edited by: ThunderAxe31
Download: Download (6078 bytes)
Status: decision: cancelled
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Author's comments and explanations:


BizHawk V. 2.3.1 with default settings

Programming Errors:

No programming errors are abused in this run. However, one "glitch" that is performed is doing a short forward jump before jumping over the fence on the second screen of each loop. This jump is only possible if your subpixel position is right upon entering the screen. Otherwise, you will hit the fence and lose a life. As such, I make sure to manipulate my movement before going to the second screen so that I have the right subpixel to make the jump.


No hits or deaths are taken in this run.


The goal of this TAS was to beat the game as fast as possible. Smurfs: Rescue from Gargamel's Castle has 4 difficulty loops before the difficulty stops increasing, so the goal of this TAS was to beat all 4 loops of the game as fast as possible.

Game Description:

In Smurfs: Rescue from Gargamel's Castle, you play as a Smurf trying to rescue Smurfette, who has been kidnapped and is being kept on a shelf in Gargamel's castle. Along the way, you have to jump over obstacles, get past enemies, and reach Smurfette. When you press up on the joystick, your Smurf will jump forward a fixed distance. If you hold up while landing from a previous jump, you will do a longer, faster jump, which is needed to clear obstacles. Your Smurf has no attack, so you must rely on jumping over enemies to avoid being killed. Additionally, if you bump into a wall or ledge you will lose a life. At first, there are very few enemies in the game. However, after you rescue Smurfette for the first time, the game loops, except that every screen (besides the first and last of the game) will now appear twice in a row. Additionally, there are now more enemies scattered throughout the game that you must avoid. When you beat the second loop, you enter another loop where each screen repeats 3 times in a row. Finally, after beating the third loop, you enter the last loop, where every room repeats 4 times in a row. After beating this loop, the game continues endlessly, but does not get any more difficult on each loop.

With each increasing loop, the game's enemies get faster and more aggressive. Jumping is much faster than walking in this game, so its important to time your jumps so that you spend as much time in the air as possible while also avoiding touching any enemies.

TASing Process:

One of the most annoying parts of this game to TAS was actually the last screen of the game. The bat in this room is impossible to jump over if it doesn't move (since there isn't enough room on the platform it is above for you to jump over it). As such, you have to slowly move forward, and jump at the right moment to lure the bat to move down towards you. After this, you can jump over the bat and continue on your way.

I didn't discover the quicker jump to clear the fence on the second screen of each loop until the TAS was about halfway done, so I had to go back and remake all of the earlier levels. Initially, this saved about 100 frames over my first attempt at TASing the game. However, as a result of worse enemy patterns following the early jump over the fence, this timesave slowly eroded away. In the end, jumping over the fence on the second screen of each loop only saved me 12 frames over the course of the entire run.

Not many Atari 2600 games have an ending point like rescuing a princess (or in this case, a Smurf). As such, I thought this would be a good game to make a TAS out of. I hope you enjoy watching it!

(Link to video)

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