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

Submission #6430: EZGames69's Saturn Castlevania: Symphony of the Night "Maria mode" in 06:53.03

Console: Sega Saturn
Game name: Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
Game version: JPN
ROM filename: Castlevania - Symphony of the Night.iso
Branch: Maria mode
Emulator: BizHawk 2.3.1
Movie length: 06:53.03
FrameCount: 24782
Re-record count: 110467
Author's real name:
Author's nickname: EZGames69
Submitter: EZGames69
Submitted at: 2019-06-19 13:52:36
Text last edited at: 2019-06-27 18:36:09
Text last edited by: feos
Download: Download (16412 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:

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Game objectives

  • Emulator used: Bizhawk 2.3.1
  • takes damage to save time
  • heavy luck manipulation
  • Uses Japan Bios 1.00


Castlevania Symphony of the Night is arguably one of the best 2D platformers ever made. While most know of it from the PSX release, it also recieved a port on the Sega Saturn in Japan, and is considered to be one of the worst ports for the game due to its poor performance in lag. However it has an exclusive maria mode, which allows you to play as Maria Renard.

Maria mode plays simmilar to Richter where you can freely explore the castle. so much so that you can get to the final boss right away after you turn the castle around.

This movie is around a 12.05 second improvement to the publicaion, as shown in the comparison encode. the time appears longer due to better saturn emulation in bizhawk compared to yabause-rr, which includes an extra 12 seconds of bios start up time (overall a 20 second time difference due to loading, which is also reflected in the comparison encode.)

the previous movie is able to skip some screens at the beginning by doing a soft restart by pressing Start, A, B, and C, but because bizhawk uses the bios for saturn, it just brings you back to the Saturn menu instead.

Stage by stage comments


So right off the bat you'll notice some different movement compared to the previous tas, you can cancel out your forward kick by holding the opposite direction during the kick, this allows me to continuously dive kick and forward kick in quick succession. It is faster than just down dashing. some areas I still do down dashing because I either cant do a forward kick there or it puts me into position to start a high jump.

Alchemy Laboratory

probably the only time save worth mentioning is the 3rd to last room, instead of downward kicking to a lower level then super jumping to the exit, instead I go to a higher platorm, slide on that, then use a super jump to hit the exit to halt my jump speed then mozy around to enter in, this saves a little bit more than a half a second.

Royal Chapel

since you have a bit more speed doing the downward kicks than doing diagonal super jumps, I alternate using both methods to get up the giant stairs. for the Griffin fight, I can get a bit more damage on him by shooting a hadauken before doing the KameHameHa.

Castle Keep

I manipulate RNG to get an axe drop from one of the knights, it will be important for use in the Inverted Chapel. This area just has some better movement overall and doesnt try to bonk into ceilings as much.

Inverted Chapel

Screen Transitions in the Chapel in general are pretty broken. if you back dash into the middle of a transition you can confuse the game into placing you somewhere else on the screen, the first room does it in the save room to save a little bit of time. for the Medusa fight, I dont use the KameHameHa as it would waste valuable energy that I need for the next room, so instead I stomp on her until she's dead.

once again, by using the broken screen transitions, I can get out of bounds and avoid any other obstacles that would normally slow me down. Axes are important here because your downward kick will lose speed after awhile, but if you throw an axe, you can preserve your current speed, this allows me to quickly get under some steeples.

Reverse Colosseum

not much to explain in this room, other than the axe movement at the end lets me avoid taking damage from a wearwolf


Blue Dragon helps to end input extremely early.

Memory: Claiming for judging

Memory: This run improves optimization over the published run in basically all areas and there are no signs of obvious sloppiness. I personally looked into the logo skip trick of the previous run and found that performing it on bizhawk resulted in going back to the bios menu.

I found the movement of Maria to be quite entrancing over the course of the run and the audience also loved the run too.

Accepting to Moons as an improvement to [3130] Saturn Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (JPN) "Maria Mode" by arandomgameTASer in 06:45.72.

feos: Pub.

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