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When human skills are just not enough

Movies for NES Gauntlet

#22781190872746344 - NES Gauntlet - Completed in 42004 frames
Gauntlet_FRK_v1.fm2 (616kB fm2 movie [NES])
Uploaded 2015-05-14 22:32:46 by FatRatKnight (209 files)
For NES Gauntlet (5 files)
In 11:38.92 [42004 frames], 6580 rerecords)
2763 views, 130 downloads
https://youtu.be/CsuVDfzdRLI - Thanks solarplex!

Did I mention I hate being sick? While recovering, a second sickness hit. Awful, I say. But my life story isn't what you want to hear.

I've beaten [392] NES Gauntlet (USA) by foda in 12:24.65 by 2675 frames. As usual of any submissions I want to make, I want to put subtitles in first. That, and I have a submission text to make, as well.

... I'll get around to it when I'm feeling more in a mood to write. Being sick doesn't help with that.

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#22434931381191468 - NES Gauntlet - World 3 done (-730 frames)
Gauntlet_FRK_W3.fm2 (367kB fm2 movie [NES])
Uploaded 2015-04-29 08:17:32 by FatRatKnight (209 files)
For NES Gauntlet (5 files)
In 06:56.65 [25040 frames], 3811 rerecords)
2587 views, 117 downloads
Too lazy to post a room-by-room breakdown of frame counts. FODA's world 2 was pretty robust, though. (I'm calling it 'world', although it's probably a bad term for a cluster of approx. 20 rooms)

Notable differences include spending a potion to get rid of some massive lag, fetching two keys from secret walls and skipping one different key, and fetching a potion allowed by the spare key. I haven't really found any other convenient potions in my mapping, though. Killing that lag by potion apparently saved over three seconds.

Seems I'm getting closer to improving yet something else. Oh, how fun.

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#22335975284900107 - NES Gauntlet - Map script
Gauntlet_map.lua (13.5kB Lua script)
Uploaded 2015-04-24 21:20:09 by FatRatKnight (209 files)
For NES Gauntlet (5 files)
2633 views, 141 downloads
This maps things really, really well. I hope. Since the script knows of the basic walls, and that it also knows of all map objects, this should cover everything there can possibly be in the stage.

Hit space to get a map sprawled out into the Output Console, as well as an object listing. I use "B" for whatever reason, to have the script spit out potential exits. I can confirm that room 98 really has no exits.

This doesn't actually peek into the ROM, only whatever is loaded in RAM. So I still need to reach the room in question to map it, and it still wouldn't get all the variations of it (treasure room exits, for the most part). Still, this gives me a near-perfect knowledge of each room so I won't miss any detail.

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#22335716125478936 - NES Gauntlet - World 1 done (-188 frames)
Gaintlet_FRK_W1.fm2 (110kB fm2 movie [NES])
Uploaded 2015-04-24 21:03:21 by FatRatKnight (209 files)
For NES Gauntlet (5 files)
In 02:05.06 [7516 frames], 1352 rerecords)
2578 views, 116 downloads
I did believe I wouldn't make a significant improvement. Alas, my belief failed me.

Let's see... What tricks have I learned...

  • Applying input just before the lag transition lets that input work a frame earlier than doing it after the lag transition.
  • Try to avoid "pushing" solid walls. Even walking along it with angled input. Lots of lag will result.
  • Realize the game uses an odd debouncing mechanism that refuses change in input until it gets two duplicate input polls in a row.

As for each level:
r01 - (-002) I saved two lag frames. I did also save a not-lag frame, but lost it somehow...
r05 - (-031) I go to the right after breakable wall. Also lets me line up a stylish shot.
r09 - (-003) Lag. Everywhere. Yah. Honestly, I was lazy here, but I'm still faster.
r10 - (-013) Shot the secret wall from a better angle. Also phased through Death.
r11 - (-117) Skipped the key. This will cost me, however.
t13 - (-006) According to my notes, FODA lagged the treasure room. How?
r14 - (+028) I pick up the earlier key. Faster than r11 key by less than 5 frames, apparently. Other key skipped.
r17 - (-043) The upper panel is skipped. I get the key blocked off by a secret wall, faster than r14 corner key.
r18 - (-006) Not sure what I did different.
t19 - (-002) These two frames were due to the pre-transition input.

r20 - (-017) I thought for a moment. Each dragon head has 100 HP. Elf arrow does 1 damage, 2 with Extra Shot. It costs about 300 frames to get Extra Shot. I doubt I can shoot a head with less than 2 frames per arrow.

188 frames for the first world, plus another 17 frames for the first level in the second. Measurements are done by finding the first non-lag frame after the room fade-in transition.

As far as scripting goes, I actually have very little need of an active script. The only numbers I'm using are the ones shown in this script and my X,Y coordinate. I don't see what other information would help. Well, other than a suite of complete mapping functions, anyway.

... I am not fixing the filename typo.

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#22258475716248466 - NES Gauntlet - Paints ID numbers script.
Gauntlet.lua (5.89kB Lua script)
Uploaded 2015-04-21 09:34:14 by FatRatKnight (209 files)
For NES Gauntlet (5 files)
2643 views, 112 downloads
Most of this script is the DrawNum function. The tiny bit at the bottom of the code is the interesting part.

All it does is try to find objects on screen and paints hexadecimal numbers: ID number of object and the spare number the object may use. It does, however, spot all the walls that might disappear when shot or a flashing tile is touched.

In other news, foda's run syncs just fine in FCEUX. There's a surprising detail in that dragon is immune to damage if currently throwing fire.

I have no clue why I just analyzed this game. I don't believe I'll make notable improvements.

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