TASVideos

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

Submission #921: Truncated's Genesis TAZ Mania in 08:52.53

Console: Sega Genesis
Game name: TAZ Mania
Game version: USA
ROM filename: TAZ Mania (U).bin
Branch:
Emulator: (unknown)
Movie length: 08:52.53
FrameCount: 31952
Re-record count: 8168
Author's real name: A. Berglin
Author's nickname: Truncated
Submitter: Truncated
Submitted at: 2005-12-23 01:30:59
Text last edited at: 2006-03-31 23:48:10
Text last edited by: Bisqwit
Download: Download (3670 bytes)
Status: published
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Author's comments and explanations:
Hi all. This is my TAZ (Taz assisted zpeedrun) of TAZ-mania. Ha. Ha. Ha.

I made a preliminary run of this a long time ago, just after my first Kid Chameleon submission. Since no-one seemed interested then I worked on this alone. That one was 10:31. This is 8:53. This wins.

Why is this game interesting for a run?

The reasons I started running this game are 1) I own it and know it fairly well, 2) Taz moves extremely fast, way too fast to handle for a player normally, and 3) it is one of the few games that can (almost, I found out later) be played optimally using two buttons simultaneously, which is what my crappy laptop keyboard could handle when I started. I've upgraded since.

Tricks used

  • Spinning cancels upwards momentum fast, this is used for boarding low platforms.
  • You can do a small hop while spinning. It's only a few pixels high, but because you're moving at such a high speed you can pass quite wide gaps without stopping for a regular jump.
  • If you "rev up" the spinning for a few frames, you can start going forward at max velocity at once.
  • While spinning you can change directions and stop instantly. This is the fastest way to turn even though it involves spinning a bit longer.
  • Bouncing on enemies gives quite a vertical boost. Useful in several places.
  • Under some special circumstances you can clear a ledge which you are clearly way below. Very useful in Caves 2.
  • You lose a lot of speed if you spin into an enemy/object, but jumping over them is usually even slower. Only the rats are low enough that you can jump over them with one (double-) frame of jump.
  • You can try to fall trough the ground (down+C) even when you are standing on solid ground. Useful for the rubber elevators.

Peculiarities

  • Sometimes the enemies hurt you when you spin into them, sometimes not. It's related to which frame of animation they are in, I think.
  • The music changes according to which area of the level you are in, how fast you are going (with the minecart), which actions you perform and what enemies are on-screen.
  • I try to do something interesting with the waiting time at the end of each level, minus the ones before flame glitch levels (see below), because that trick doesn't seem to work when I do.
  • One of the sound effects - the "tink" sound used in the intro music - is emulated wrong and sounds horrible. Fortunately it's not heard very often.

This game lags. All the time. The animation updates at 30 Hz, with the exception of a few levels (first boss, minecart level). This doesn't mean that the game runs slower. It just updates the graphics and accepts input every other frame. Thus, this movie was made by fiercly doubleclicking the frame advance button. I don't know if this has some effect on the encoding, I could specify between which frames the game switches to updating 60 Hz if that's wanted.

Level rundown

Desert 1

Nothing too special, except at the end. When I hit the geyser thingie, I'm really supposed to be pushed backwards, but since I'm too far into the water pillar I immediatly get pushed to the right again.

I could also mention that objects spawn just before they get on the screen, so if you can improve some part by a few frames you can probably keep it to the end without waiting for the geysers.

Desert 2

I made three double-frame mistakes here just after the bombs. I noticed later I could have jumped one double frame earlier. Other than that, I think it's good.

Desert Boss

You are really supposed to jump on this boss three times, but the bomb kills it in one hit. It's kind of buggy though, it starts the countdown for the level to end, but the car keeps on running, mostly graphically unharmed (unlike when you stomp it).

You can't pick up the bomb again until it has come to a complete stop. But throwing it and waiting to pick it up is faster than walking with it.

Factory 1

You are not supposed to be able to jump from the box to the platform in the beginning, you're supposed to pick it up and put it closer. It's just barely possible to make the jump without moving the box.

I take a shortcut later when I drop down trough a platform. You are supposed to go to the left on two more conveyor belts.

Factory 2

I need to waste some time in the beginning here, otherwise the invincibility wears off before I can clear the second electric area. Since it's impossible to make it to the next one before the tank blocks the way, I stop by for a snack.

You are really supposed to take detours to pull levers and turn off the electricity in each of the areas, but I skip all of them.

In the end you can see me go right trough a laser for some unknown reason, and standing inside the tank for a few frames. It doesn't appear directly if scrolled in from below.

Ice

Whee! I go almost straight trough this level at spin speed, which is impossible at 100% speed. The small spinjump is abused excessively at the ice blocks.

Jungle 1

Did you know? Rats are actually made of rubber. Rubber, I tells ya. You go soooo high when you stomp them.

At the part where I jump off two rats I spin-kill a chicken on the platform above. If you just jump trough it you end up picking up the chicken instead, even though you are in the air. Yeah, it's weird, but you can clear the jump a little faster this way at least.

Jungle 2 / The tree / Jungle boss

Abuse of the rubber rats save a lot of time here, since most of this level is traversed vertically.

This boss is the first part where I'm not completely confident that I'm optimal. The invincibility time between each hit doesn't seem to be constant, or maybe I'm doing something wrong. His erratic running is also very irritating.

At the end I show off how you can escape the boss room. You can do this during the fight too, of course.

River 1

In the beginning I hit an enemy to reset my vertical speed and just barely make it onto the first ledge. After that it's just the regular spinnin', jumpin' and stompin'.

Caves 1

I'm sure this is optimal, unless someone can find a faster way to get into the cart. I hold forward to increase the speed the whole level, except for the forced stops.

Caves 2

Here is the reason this run was stuck in limbo for so long. This stage is hell to optimize, especially the elevators. There are sooo many ways to jump onto and off them. And it's very hard to evaluate if some way is faster than some other, in particular the second rubber elevator, which I would say is the second part I'm not confident about finding the best solution.

This stage still has some nice tricks, with a double rubber bat jump, and getting on an elevator shortly after that even though I completely miss it. I skip the last elevator and take a leap of faith in the very end.

River 2

I hate this level. This is where I always die when playing on a console. One mistake and you're fish food. Still, it's possible to go trough it very quickly.

The small stops in the spinning is to press up or down, otherwise you miss the platform. When jumping normally from a log you get a speed boost in the wrong direction, so I keep that to an absolute minimum.

Oversized carnivourous plant boss

Taking damage in the beginning is the fastest way to progress, and it also helps you to score the first hit on the boss as early as possible.

Throwing the bags at him does twice the damage as jumping/spinning, but the other two bags are too far away and you can't spin while holding them, so I only use one. You have to delay one hit on the boss (but it's barely visible), if you hit him as early as possible every time he never gets a chance to turn around so you can get him closer to the bag.

Temple 1

I don't quite know what the heck going on here (because the screen is still nearly all black) but I think that spinning right at the first possible frame gets you inside the flame above Taz (you can hear the sound effect of it), and that somehow warps him quickly to the right. I pass about 1/3 of the level with this trick.

Temple 2

A batstomp saves me two jumps going up. A while later a flame is in the way (and it seems impossible to manipulate it) so I got a restart-from-here-if-you-die-but-you-wont-thingie while waiting for it.

Temple 3 (Boss)

The first half of this level is actually identical to Temple 1, so I used the same trick in the beginning and to my great surprise ended up in an even better spot (for this level, in Temple 1 it would have made it impossible to finish).

I hurt the boss before he's even active (you can hear it and he's in the ouch-animation when he comes in). This means that Taz is stuck in limbo state afterwards until he's hit, so I park right under the boss to make sure that I get hit as soon as possible.

Final Boss

This boss is the low point of this run, because it stays off the screen for the majority of the time. Still, I found a few ways to speed it up marginally.

Taking damage directly allows you to hit the boss the first time she's in, which is impossible otherwise. After that the temporary invincibility is used to endure the claw attack, which is slightly faster than the wings. I use the same trick again later when she goes up to 6 attacks per round.

If you wonder why I don't get hit by the wings/claws sometimes, it's because the boss is still temporarily invincible from the last hit, and she can't hit you during that time. You can see the wings/claws flashing.

Categories:

  • As fast as possible
  • Plays at hardest difficulty
  • Takes damage to save time. And for fun.
  • Abuses bugs
  • Does NOT manipulate luck at all
  • Genre: Platform
  • Made with various versions of Gens. Plays back fine in 9F and probably others.

Next up is Alien Soldier... any year now. Merry Christmas everyone. Truncated out.


Truncated: Several people have told me now that I should accept this, even though I think it's somewhat bad form to accept your own submissions. If any of you think I'm making a bad decision here, just let me know.


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