Submission #2948: AKheon's GBC Xena: The Warrior Princess in 03:18.97

Console Game Boy Color Emulator VBA
Game Version USA Frame Count 11938
ROM Filename Xena - Warrior Princess (U) [C][!].gbc Frame Rate 60
Branch Rerecord Count 5356
Unknown Authors AKheon
Game Xena: Warrior Princess
Submitted by AKheon on 12/20/2010 11:49:09 PM

Submission Comments
Made in VBA 1. 7. 2 re-recording v21 interim
"Allow L+R" is enabled.
  • Aims for fastest speed
  • Abuses programming errors
  • Takes damage to save time

It's once again the time when Xena undergoes a psychosis travels to a dream land "Psychosia" to face her inner fears, doing all sorts of quests and picking up treasures eventually getting hit by a lot of pasties and freeing the imprisoned Morpheus bumping into Morpheus, who in turn promises her to have better dreams from there on. It's a tale we can all learn something from, I'm sure.
This is a 1097 frame improvement (about 18 secs) over the last movie I made of this game. I couldn't believe how many frames there were to save - some came from correcting mistakes, some from refinement and some from new techniques. I expected this to be a something like a 3-7 sec improvement when I restarted... but I kept finding improvements, and this is the result.

About tricks used

The biggest weakness of this otherwise decently programmed game is the "save" screen - I mean the screen which complains that you don't have enough diamonds to save. Guess the gametesters only played this game with a lot of diamonds because this menu screen works outrageously. It allows you to avoid death floor (water or lava), pass through walls, skip item pick-up messages (saving time) and cause other slightly strange things which are probably not seen in this run because almost everything is skipped.
Other than that, there are small things like L+R during the platforming sections, allowing double speed. Also a combat exploit using the screen boundary, which is not used in this version of the run because of a different fighting strategy.
Messages can be skipped with both A and B, so instead of patiently searching for the earliest frame for skipping a message, I usually alternated between A and B for every frame.
New things are listed in the level-by-level section below.

Intro screens

1 frame of improvements, possibly due to an oversight with the language menu, which could be cleared with 'B' earlier than with other buttons.

Swamp part 1 + getting the sword

Introspection. I think a critical mistake I made in the last run was that I became blinded by the novelty of hopping everywhere tool-assisted. Sure, it looks silly and fast, but the harsh truth is that it is actually slower than simply walking diagonally. A change which saved frames from most screens in this run.
After getting the sword, I tried an alternative route of exiting the screen from as low as possible, but enemies get in the way and it is slower than simply going above the bushes and other obstacles. Also sadly, due to the backtracking in this screen, this is the only screen in the game where death abuse could come in handy. But doing that is 100 frames slower than just hopping to the next screen, so it's a no-go.
Total of 24 frames ahead of the published run.

Swamp part 2

Since opening the "save" screen takes so long, I figured another route would be better. Now, you only need to open up the "save" screen 4 times using this route, and that already saves a lot of frames, even though the route is not as direct as before.
265 frames ahead of the published run.

Swamp part 3

Diagonal walking and an additional damage boost help save frames in this screen of very precise jumps.
274 frames ahead of the published run.

Centaurs' Village

A modified route and more diagonal walking than before save frames. I also don't take damage here unlike before.
Just to note that whenever I open an exit and the happy jingle plays, the screen transition will not begin until it ends, so it doesn't really matter how slowly I go touch the exit (as long as it happens before the music ends).
~302 frames ahead of the published run.


L+R glitch is used to make Xena move at double speed, like before. More precise moving saves frames at the beginning, but then a new technique is used to skip climbing down the ladders, saving seconds like no other. The technique is basically that you do a really small jump while some way down on the ladder, while not pressing up or down at the same time.
Unfortunately some of the damage boosts in this area serve no purpose. They don't really help because of timing and nearby collision issues.
At the very end, some more time is saved by climbing up the ladder using a pattern of "B" x 9, then 'up' for a single frame, then repeating. Simply turboing up the ladder was not the fastest way. (this alone saved 15 frames)
427 frames ahead of the published run.

The Ramparts

Ah, The Ramparts. My least favorite area and undoubtetly the most complex room of the run too. A lot of time was saved here by focusing on Xena's multi-tasking capacity and making her slay all 3 enemies on both sides at once. I also deigned to use the door on the right instead of jumping through the wall because it was faster in relation to how I wanted to position my enemies in the fight. I'm not sure if this area could still be improved with a better route.
I put key at 'A' at the first possible moment, and interestingly, the menu shows that I have 00 keys in my inventory. Enjoy this additional small glitchy tidbit.
For some reason, if you jump out of bounds, there is an entrance in the lower right corner which takes you to the outer right door. It's absolutely useless, but it makes me wonder...
1048 frames ahead of published run.


Same strategy as in the first run, but due to better precision I win frames.
1059 frames ahead of published run.


This was another room where I got small improvement, making sure everything was optimal this time. Again, you are supposed to take 10 pasties to the face for whatever reason before you can open the door. Xena's dream is so messed up!
1062 frames ahead of published run.

Small corridor + Morpheus room

Diagonal walking helps. Then, in the last room I manipulate the fastest outcome I think is possible for Morpheus (same as in the last run) and just jump up to him. This initiates the last discussion of the game and you never actually have to free him from his prison or anything.
Total of 1097 frames faster than the published run.
In-game timer says: 00h 02m 48s.

Guess that's all. I'd like it if you could glitch this game even more. I mean, if lag (?) can make the game do strange shit like this, who is to say that a DelayStageClear-type glitch isn't possible? I have had Xena lose her sword for absolutely no reason in a dungeon, so there are still mysteries left to this game.
Keep up the good work, people of TASvideos.

mmarks: Added Flygon module. Replace module YouTube
klmz: Although there is not much feedback from the audience, this movie has been accepted as an improvement to the currently published movie.
Mister Epic: Quoting from AKheon : "This has been sitting here for a while already, hasn't it... based on the quietude of the last few days, guess everyone's somewhere else for holidays. Anyway, just wanted to say that thanks for "accepting", if the text regarding the fate of this submission is to be believed."
Hey buddy, I'll publish this now.

Last Edited by Ilari on 11/6/2011 11:56 PM
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