Submission #1618: dave_dfwm's NES Dragon Warrior 3 in 1:50:36.18

Console Nintendo Entertainment System Emulator FCEU0.98
Game Version USA Frame Count 398171
ROM Filename Dragon Warrior III (U).nes Frame Rate 60
Branch Rerecord Count 6715
Unknown Authors dave_dfwm
Game Dragon Warrior III
Submitted by dave_dfwm on 7/3/2007 2:57:27 PM

Submission Comments
Dragon Warrior 3 Full Run == 1:50:56 == Author: Dave Brown (dave_dfwm)

Here is version 2 of “non-glitched” Dragon Warrior 3. This TAS is over 23 minutes faster than the original!! While I was making my first version of this game, a very well-known and respected TAS-er said “Personally, I think anything sub 3hrs would be publish-worthy.” Well, here is the full run of Dragon Warrior 3, completed in less than TWO hours!! If you haven’t watched the previous version of this movie, or if you don’t know much about Dragon Warrior 3, I recommend reading the submission novel that I wrote for version 1 of this game, see here Not all of this text applies directly to version 2, but many questions can still be answered there.


  • Genre: RPG
  • Goal: Fastest Time
  • Uses death as a shortcut
  • Manipulates luck
  • Emulator: FCEU 0.98.15
  • ROM: Dragon Warrior 3 (U).nes

New discoveries

  • Party Formation can affect the RNG for battles. I shorten the first Orochi fight by switching formation, and shorten the second fight by switching back.


Here are the main reasons why this TAS is over 23 minutes faster than the original.
  • Not measurable
    • Choosing “slow” battle message speed instead of fast. This saved time each turn in every fight. Thanks to adelikat for mentioning this to me after my first movie.
    • Party Choice – I used the default party here which of course gave me a soldier instead of two pilgrims. While his RNG manipulation ability is limited, he made all the fights shorter, especially at lower levels due to his ability to inflict much higher damage than the pilgrim. I was worried that he would have a “useless” first round in boss fights, but it turned out not to be the case. He can parry, fight, use an herb (see the Baramos fight) or use a seed to manipulate the rest of the fight. The soldier is the main reason why the fights are shorter, along with the “slow” message speed.
  • Huge
    • Less time leveling up throughout the game, specifically for Boss Troll, combined with a different leveling strategy
    • Not getting the Wizard’s Ring and other treasures in Isis at night
    • Dying twice in the pyramid (not getting flashy clothes and falling from top)
  • Big
    • Going solo until after the golden claw (saves revival time). I knew this would be faster while I was doing my first run, but I didn’t know if I would be able to make it through the *pyramid twice using only herbs and trying to run from battles.
    • No extra treasure (except strength seed) picked up in Samanao Cave
    • Less purchases at beginning of game in Reeve
    • Not picking up any treasure and spending much less time in the tower west of Kol
  • Small
    • Gamble arena fight is shorter
    • Shorter Orochi Fight (both fights only 2 rounds)
    • No extra treasure picked up in phantom ship
    • Shorter Boss Troll Fight
    • Shorter Bomb Crag Fight
    • Shorter Kandar 2 Fight
    • No extra fight in Navel of Earth
    • Much shorter Ortega vs. King Hydra fight
  • Minor
    • Saved ~100 frames in Vase of Drought Room
    • Small route changes throughout
      • --using inn at Baharata before Kandar instead of Dhama
      • --Sailing to the shoals from Dhama and picking up Jipang along the way – saved time when I needed to fight Orochi.
      • --Getting Sword of Gaia from Lancel instead of Noaniels – I think it’s about 2 tiles closer
      • --Not visiting Noaniels
      • --Using inn at Assaram instead of Baharata before Metal Sliming
      • --Not using the Inn before Baramos, along with better usage and planning of when to use wings, return spells, and the Inn.
    • Not registering a second pilgrim
    • Visiting the pirate house from Tedanki instead of Aliahan
    • Using a 1-letter name instead of a 5 character name. This saved small bits of time throughout the game. In fact, it saved 4 frames most times the hero’s name is mentioned.
    • Not performing unnecessary stops. I equip items and transfer items only when I had to stop for another reason, such as talk to a person or open a treasure chest.

A few time losses (as relative comparisons to version 1):

  • Using the Leaf of World Tree on my party after the Wizard’s massive level up
  • Fighting an extra fight and picking up the Demon Axe in Baramos’ Castle
  • Longer Granite Titan battles
  • Buying herbs in Tantegel before Charlock Castle

Most Entertaining moments

  • Bomb crag fight – the poison needle works 4 rounds in a row.
  • First Metal Babble fight – Harley thereby gains 53,600 experience points. Harley goes up to the next level!
  • The two Orochi fights. – both extremely fast, and the first one ends with a tremendous hit from my pilgrim. How humiliating for the Orochi. Orochi’s cousin, the King Hydra, also gets humiliated in two rounds of quick action.
  • Baramos fight – ends with a tremendous hit from the soldier. Once again, Baramos is sleeped, sapped, stopspelled, and surrounded. Unfortunately, my pilgrim dies for the cause. It is faster for my pilgrim to die than have him parry-fight twice to save his life. He is revived automatically anyway after the fight. Perhaps he died since he is still wearing the leather armor at this point.
  • Weapon and armor purchases in Samanao – Since my soldier is dumb (low intelligence) he decides to beat his head into a few walls while waiting for a favorable gambling arena fight. Also, pay attention to how much gold is remaining after I make the purchases. The gambling barely gives me enough gold. In fact, if the other healer would have won the fight, I wouldn’t have had enough gold, even if I had also sold the leather armor and bronze shield that the pilgrim was carrying.
  • An odd party formation and a very anticlimactic ending as Zoma gets ‘herbed’ to death. This time, my hero dies for the cause (but is later automatically revived when day breaks). I had two medical herbs in this fight do over 240 damage each!

Other notes

  • Unfortunately, I do not pick up a Thor’s Sword or Magic Bikini in this run.
  • The RNG was acting like a spoiled brat when I wanted to level up my wizard for the Boss Troll fight. The “ironizing” myself through an agonizingly long marine slime fight really was the quickest way to get a babble to appear. There was another babble I could get to appear MUCH quicker, but he unavoidably ran away at the beginning of the fight.
  • Since the hero of the DW1 and DW2 TAS videos is named “!”, I decided to name my merchant “!”. Perhaps there was a mix-up in the lineage, and the heroes of the later games are actually descendants from the greedy merchant...
  • In my last video, I used the SpeedUp spell in many boss fights as a luck manipulator. I don’t use it at all in this new TAS. This is another reason why the fights are shorter, since this spell ‘hits’ all 4 characters.
  • Yes, the undo count probably seems a little low. After making version 1, I became very good at knowing the first frame available for button pressing in most situations, such as buying items, using spells, and battle commands. In many places, I was able to just slow down the emulator to 3% speed and press the button on the fastest frame on the first record instead of figuring out what the fastest frame was, then doing a re-record.
  • After completing this run, I am beginning to wonder if the Meteorite Armband is necessary. If the game could be TASed without it, that would create another “huge” timesaver, taking at least 2 minutes off the game time.
  • I still believe this game is popular enough to warrant two runs if someone decides to do a “glitched” version. (Well, at least I think it’s more popular than some games with two movies, such as Rescue Rangers, M.C. Kids, and Gimmick…) Also, if someone decides to do the glitched version, you may want to think very carefully about where and how you want to level up. Manipulating metal babbles on the Samanao shrine island can be extremely difficult and time-consuming (in real time and in game time).

NesVideoAgent: Hi! I am a robot. I took a few screenshots of this movie and placed them here. Oh! I also replaced the ROM name.
  • You indicated Dragon Warrior 3 (U).nes
  • I updated it to Dragon Warrior III (U).nes

adelikat: Accepting for publication as an improvement to the currently published run.

DeHackEd: AVI in progress.

Last Edited by adelikat on 1/17/2022 3:41 PM
Page History Latest diff