TASVideos

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

Movie Class Guidelines

This page describes the proper tagging of movies with movie classes. It is required reading for all users with access to movie class assignment (admin / adminassistant / judge / publisher / vested editor).

Additional reading

Table of contents [expand all] [collapse all]

Overview

The goal of classes is to categorize movies based on game genre, movie goals, and various aspects of TASing (that may or may not be entertaining to an audience member). This gives visitors the freedom to group movies based around their particular interests. Therefore proper tagging is critical to the usefulness of this feature.

Non-fastest completion goals

Playaround

Used for movies where speed, 100% kills or maximum score are not primary goals. This is for entertainment based movies that "play around". Runs which aim for fastest time under a preset number of goal choices should not be tagged with this.

Examples:

Aims for maximum score

Used for movies that aim for the highest score possible at the expense of fastest completion time. This is an acceptable tag even if the author aims for fastest completion time as a secondary goal.

Examples:

Maximum kills

Used for movies that aim for the killing of all (or all that is possible) enemies at the expense of fastest completion time. This is an acceptable tag even if the author aims for fastest completion time as a secondary goal.

Examples:

Aims for in-game time instead of real-time

Used for movies that aim for fastest time based on an in-game timer. This tag should be used only when the in-game timer is in direct conflict with aiming for the fastest real time completion.

Examples:

Demonstration

This should be used for movies that demonstrate something other than these examples or fastest completion time. This can be used for single-level/track movies, unusual goal choices (like walkathon), or any movie that demonstrates an unusual TAS concept.

For this tag to be appropriate, the game must either not be completed (based on traditional definitions) or completed with a goal choice other than one of the standard categories.

Examples:

Contains speed/entertainment tradeoffs

This is not a goal choice per se. This tag should not be used for non-speed-oriented runs such as maximum score runs or playarounds. Instead, it should be used for movies that primarily aim for fastest time but make some (small) time sacrifices for the sake of entertaining the audience, avoiding repetition, or avoiding doing something that would be uninteresting. It may also be to collect an item or show off a part of the game that increases entertainment value.

This tag should only be used for cases where actual gameplay time is affected (for instance, games in which the author inputs their name at the beginning should not be tagged with this).

Examples:

  • Harmony of Dissonance – deviates from the fastest path to collect an item that displays damage (allowing the screen to be flooded with critical hit messages in boss fights).
  • Paperboy – plays the final training course.
  • Yoshi's Island - forgoes 1/1 running to be able to juggle eggs and enemies.

Categories

Best ending

Used for movies that achieve some kind of "best ending" when choosing another one would prove to be faster. However, if the best ending is achieved solely by getting 100% completion, then use that tag instead.

Examples:

100% completion

Different games have different criteria for what defines 100%. Regardless of the definition, this should be used if the movie falls in a 100% category. Do not use this if the fastest completion results in a 100% completion.

Examples:

Low% completion

Used for runs which aim to collect as few items as possible. Do not use this if the fastest route uses the fewest items. It is used only on games where item collection is not mandatory (or became non-mandatory due to tricks or glitches).

Examples:

Uses a suboptimal character

For games that have multiple playable characters, this class is used when a movie uses a character that results in a slower completion time. This is not based on whether or not the character itself is faster/slower. In some cases, the character is better, but their superior abilities do not compensate for the extra time it takes to unlock them.

Note: This tag is only applicable if the fastest character is available for the first playthrough. This means that default characters are not considered suboptimal if unlocking a faster character entails completing the game at least once (see Second quest/Post-game completion).

Examples:

Uses warps

This tag should be used when a movie uses (time-saving) level warps. Typically, these are intentional warps (such as the SMB warp zones), but this tag can be used for glitched warps too.

Examples:

Forgoes warps

Used for movies (typically full completion movies) of a game that contains built-in or glitched warps.

Examples:

Pacifist version

Used for movies that explicitly avoid killing enemies (or only kill as few as possible) when it is unnecessary for game completion, even at the expense of completion time. In games where avoiding unnecessary kills does not postpone completion, it can be used as a stylistic choice and should still be tagged.

Examples:

Uses easiest difficulty

For games with multiple difficulty levels, we usually suggest using the hardest setting. In some cases, this makes the completion time much longer, or causes other adverse effects, so the player selects the easiest difficulty level instead.

Examples:

Uses hardest difficulty

For games with multiple difficulty levels, this indicates that the player has selected the hardest difficulty level. See the Guidelines for why this is normally done.

Examples:


Additional Goals/Categories

Multiple games in one movie

This is a category for movies that complete several different games with the same input file.

Examples:

Single level

For movies that only complete one level/race of a game. These types of runs are generally incomplete, and thus discouraged.

Examples:


Using/Avoiding time-saving techniques

Heavy luck manipulation

This category should be used when significant luck manipulation occurs. Ideally the luck manipulation is obvious to the viewer. This is ideal for movies where many enemy drops are manipulated, or many critical hits are scored.

Examples:

Heavy glitch abuse

This is used when significant glitches are used that alter the look/feel of the game, change the gameplay, or create significant time savers. Small bugs in the programming do not warrant this category.

Examples:

Forgoes time-saving glitches

This is to be used for "low glitch" runs that intentionally avoid time-saving glitches.

Examples:

Uses death to save time

Self-explanatory. Movies that take advantage of death for time saving purposes.

Examples:

Forgoes time-saving death

Used for movies where players could have saved time with death but intentionally chose not to.

Example:

Takes damage to save time

Self-explanatory. Movies that take damage for time-saving purposes.

Examples:

Forgoes time-saving damage

Used for movies where players could have saved time by taking damage but intentionally chose not to.

Examples:

Corrupts save data

Used for movies that take advantage of glitching SRAM in some way. This can be done by resetting or suspending a game during the saving process or by taking advantage of a glitch that causes data to overflow.

Examples:

Forgoes save data corruption

Used for movies where players could have saved time by save data corruption but intentionally chose not to in order to make the movie longer (and less glitched).

Corrupts memory

Used for movies that corrupt the game's memory in some fashion, causing unintended game behavior such as triggering the game's credits early.

Uses a game restart sequence

A game restart sequence includes pressing reset, power-on, or using a built-in game restart such as pressing a certain button combination on the second controller.

Examples:

Forgoes a time-saving restart sequence

Used for movies where players could have taken advantage of a game restart sequence to save time but intentionally chose not to.

  • There are currently no movies that do this yet.

Number of characters

2 players

3 players

4 players

5 players

For movies that control 2, 3, 4 or 5 characters simultaneously. The number of authors involved in making the movie is irrelevant.

Examples:

One player in multiplayer game

Used for movies where players could have used more than one character at a time but chose not to. This tag is still appropriate if using multiple players is slower.

Examples:


Passwords, predefined saves, and codes

Second quest/Post-game completion

Used for movies that start in a mode that is normally only unlockable after completing the game at least once. These modes are usually accessed by game codes/passwords or by starting from SRAM or saved state.

Examples:

Starts from a saved state or SRAM

Generally movies started from savestates and SRAM are not allowed for publication but certain exceptions are made. The most common is for unlocking a gameplay mode not accessible otherwise (without completing the game or certain events first).

Examples:

Uses a level password

Generally passwords / stage selection are not allowed. Exceptions are usually made to unlock entertaining characters or gameplay modes or skip straight to the most entertaining level(s).

Examples:


Unofficial Games

Non-official games should be labeled as such.

For platforms with strict licensing, any game or version thereof which does not meet it should be clearly labeled. This would include hacks of an official game, homebrew, multiple games spliced together, prototypes, or anything else not officially released for the platform.

Examples:

For platforms which are open, such as MSX, DOS or Windows, where anyone can release any software they want with no central authority controlling what is acceptable, all games in and of themselves are official. This means none of them should get the "Unofficial game" tag. The sole exception is if a third party altered an existing game from another party without permission.

Examples:


Genres

(Note: Some content is paraphrased from moozooh; see original forum post.)

Action

Action is a broad term for games where various forms of violence are the main way for the game to interact with the player (and, more often than not, vice versa). This is usually indicated by the player's character having one or more weapons or melee attacks which are used to traverse the game environment and deal with the enemies on the way.

There are genres that are, by this definition, subsets of "Action":

(Do not use "Action" for these.)

Examples:

Adventure

This genre commonly gives the player secondary goals and allows him/her to revisit earlier locations with no hard time limit.

There are genres that are, by this definition, subsets of "Adventure":

(Do not use "Adventure" for these.)

Examples:

Fighting

A subset of action games that generally feature melee combat between the protagonist and a certain number of antagonists. At TASVideos, this tag is used for versus fighters (1-on-1 or similar) as well as for brawlers (where several enemies are let on the screen in packs, only allowing the player to progress when every one of them is defeated).

Examples:

Platform

Not a genre per se, "Platform" indicates that the game environment is primarily composed of platforms (forgoing logic or realism in their placement) that force the player to traverse them using jumps or similar ways of movement.

The difference between this genre and Action is that navigating platforms is the main focus in this style of game. A game like Mega Man can be a platform game, however shooting with the Mega Buster and defeating enemies is an important part of gameplay as well. This makes it both a Platform and an Action game. Careful thought should be given to whether a game should have "Genre: Action", "Genre: Platform", or both as tags.

This is the most typical genre for TASVideos by far.

Examples:

Puzzle

This genre encompasses all games where logic and puzzle-solving are the main ideas.

Examples:

Racing

A subset of sports games (don't let the two overlap) where the primary objective is to complete a course as fast as possible either against a timer or one or more opponents.

Examples:

RPG

Role-playing games are a subset of adventure games that are notoriously hard to describe and discern. Usually they have at least two of the following characteristics:

  • massive nonlinearity – the player can revisit most (or all) of the earlier visited locations and make choices that affect the game's continuity at several parts of its progression;
  • [nearly-]direct control of the character development – depending on the game it may mean everything from player character's equipment and personal attributes to morality and outlook on the game world;
  • ability to handle in-game situations in several different ways – for instance, by fighting, reasoning, or deceit/bribery.

Examples:

Shooter

A subset of action with large emphasis on shooting and dodging enemy projectiles (or killing enemies before they can shoot them). For 2D games this more often than not implies single-hit-deaths.

Examples:

Sport

A genre that encompasses all sports games, including all board/card games. Racing games are a subset.

Examples:

Storybook

A subset of adventure with a menu-driven interface. Most or all of the interaction is turn-based and is done on a fixed screen by the means of a cursor.

Examples:

Strategy

A well-established genre where the player has to manage their combat forces and/or economical resources in real-time or by taking turns. The objective is to achieve certain goals (more often than not being the elimination of the opposing parties). "God simulation" games are also covered by this tag.

Examples:



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MovieClassGuidelines last edited by CoolKirby on 2013-12-02 05:13:53
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