Submission #3120: AKheon's GBA Mortal Kombat: Tournament Edition "tag team" in 05:56.40

Console Game Boy Advance Emulator VBA
Game Version USA Frame Count 21384
ROM Filename Mortal Kombat - Tournament Edition (U) (M5) [hIR].gba Frame Rate 60
Branch tag team Rerecord Count 14340
Unknown Authors AKheon
Game Mortal Kombat: Tournament Edition
Submitted by AKheon on 4/20/2011 2:27:11 PM

Submission Comments
  • Plays on hardest difficulty
  • Takes no damage
  • Contains speed/entertainment trade-offs
  • Abuses programming errors in the game
  • Starts from SRAM

Beginning narration:
Oh, hi there. Fancy seeing you here at this hour. Coming to see the big match, huh? You're just a tad late, though... sorry to break it to you. The audience went home already... I'm telling ya, the crowd went wild over this one. The blood spatters, the anguished screams of the defeated, the entire lightshow...! 'Twas a night to remember... what? Oh, sorry, didn't mean to, you know... rub it in, or something. Hey, hey, didn't mean to scare you off. Don't leave! Things aren't that bad. It just so happens that I managed to create a recording of the fight. It can be yours to watch, for just a little price. Oh, we can seal the deal in a jiffy. For now, just sit back and relax, here's the reel...
About the game:
Mortal Kombat: Tournament Edition is a stand-alone game which acts as a sort of expansion to the GBA port of the PS2 MK game Deadly Alliance. It has (mostly) different characters, better A.I. and some bug fixes - overall a decent or even good MK game in my opinion.
About the concept:
After finishing my previous playaround run of MK:TE, I let this game rest for a while. Eventually I started playing it again, managing to find some new glitches and becoming motivated enough to make a whole new run of it. This time the run is on Tag Mode, in which you are able to switch between two characters on the fly. This is more entertaining for various reasons - for example, Tag Mode is shorter than a V. Hard Arcade mode, and also, the Tag-button allows a few new glitches.
Like last time, this run starts from SRAM with all but two locked characters unlocked. There is little point in unlocking Reptile and Noob Saibot because they are very arduous to unlock (play through Arcade-mode with all characters, etc.) and they don't really serve the purpose of this run either - Reptile can't be morphed into, and Noob Saibot is practically just a palette swap of Scorpion.
Unlike the last run, which was along the same lines as my MKII GB tomfoolery run, full of slapstick and strange situations, this is a more brutal, direct run. An emphasis is on bizarre combos due to the new combo techniques. Also, the new Tag glitches get a decent exposure (there are two noteworthy variations, first is used in match 2 & 5, second is used in match 6).
I like how the release of this run almost coincided with the release of the new MK game.
About mechanisms & glitches:
The game only accepts input every other frame, so if I say something like "a two frame time window", I mean a total of four frames pass.
Shang Tsung has the ability to morph into any other character. It is done by pressing a few directional buttons before pressing L (a button which normally switches stance). If done during an attack, the attack does not cut off but instead another attack from the morphed character's respective movelist continues where Shang's move left off. This is used to create unique and strange combo and juggle combinations throughout the run. Also, this technique allows access to a few disabled moves and (rarely) even fatality animations mid-match - this is why I think it's a glitch and not an intended feature. Just to note, there is a hefty cooldown after each morph, but in most morph combos it doesn't matter.
Juggles aren't normally a big craze in this game. Not all of the characters can juggle well enough to even reach the natural juggling limit the game has, which is 5 normal hits or 3 launches in air before the juggled character falls down almost immediately. It doesn't help that in this game natural combo strings are rather few - that is one feature heavily stripped down from the PS2 version. However, with morphing and other techniques, you can still create flashy limit-reaching juggles with relative (tool-assisted) ease.
By pressing diagonally down and blocking, then switching stance, your character starts shaking strangely. You enter a sort of glitched blocking state, which can also cause some unique things like blocking an attack mid-jump, etc. but those are not seen in the run since I swore to not take damage (and blocking causes small damage).
Aside from the limit to juggling, damage becomes nerfed as a juggle becomes longer. An exception are some special moves, which still do their original damage - this makes them especially destructive at the end of a juggle.
While a projectile is out, no other special moves or morphing can be done.
A.I. can be fooled into getting hit by projectiles by making them walk against the level boundary. (used in matches 2, 4 & 5)
The camera always tries to remain in a position which shows the characters on the same line in 2D. However, sometimes characters fall on nearly the same y-position (is it the correct term?) without the camera changing position or the characters becoming pushed away from each other. This makes the graphics a bit glitchy, and the characters' attacks hit or miss very unreliably until the game fixes it. Easiest to do and uphold adjacent to a wall. (most noteworthily used in match 3)
Having morphs time out during special moves not only cuts off their cooldown but can also cause special effects (like in match 3, with Scorpion's spear).
Collision detection is sometimes lacking in this game, and characters can miss some very close hits.
About techniques:
I try to showcase as many juggle starters as possible in this run. The most common one is the classic jumping kick that has a wide reach, quick speed and helps stay close to the opponent.
Pressing diagonally down and blocking for just a frame buffers a special (glitched?) crouch block, cancelling some attacks' cooldown period. This is a very useful trick, and makes some characters juggle powerhouses which they never were before (including Shang himself).
This game has 1, a sort of inner hierarchy on what order morphs are accessed and 2, a directional button buffer memory that lasts about 30-40 frames. This limits your morph combo options, especially with special moves - as you input the move's directions, some morphs get a priority and some on the other hand can't be accessed any longer (until the buffer memory resets.) This restriction can be bypassed by inputting the directional buttons for a special move those 30-40 frames before starting the move - this way you get a fresh buffer memory for the duration of the special move itself.
If your character is facing away from the opponent, he turns to the correct direction if you press left or right. However, this can be prevented by pressing L during the frame you press l or r, or pressing l or r during another move's cooldown. With this technique, you can do special moves to the wrong direction, which is used for mainly the purposes of humor. (match 1 & 5)
Sektor's teleport punch allows a delightful glitch... or two. Read more below, from the mid-way narration.
Faster moving is possible forward or sideways by changing stance at quick intervals. This can be used to avoid attacks that normally can't be sidestepped away from and to make your combos even crazier. (used from match 3 onward)
Enemy A.I. can be manipulated with different attacks, using Tag or shooting a projectile. A few times during this run I do something that doesn't look purposeful but it is actually used for manipulating the enemy to do something particular. (for example, getting Scorpion shoot his spear at the end of match 3)
Grabs can be used to a flying enemy. Looks silly, but sometimes can be used for doing good damage too.

Character Select
The lag-prone character select screen can be subtly glitched up as well, so that the character portraits or blanked-out characters end up wrong.
Match 1: Bo Rai Cho & Raiden
Starts off with fairly "basic" material. First instance of a combo with a "freebie rocket" thrown in.
Bo Rai Cho is rudely finished off right before he can Tag into safety.
Fatality: no fatality, just a glitch in which you jump while in victory stance.
Match 2: Reptile & Cyrax
Jumping over a projectile is still difficult in this game, only a few frame time window for doing it.
Reptile dies in some very, uh, strange circumstances... whenever this glitch is done, the enemy gets hit even though he has already Tag-jumped away from the arena.
Yes, the morph combo with Hsu Hao ends in two very quick consecutive hits.
Intercepting a jumping kick with Bo Rai Cho's flip flop is likewise relatively suicidal, and a majority of time you just get hit.
Fatality: the telepathic neck mangler! Or arguably, Cyrax has an invisible CPU unit floating a few meters to his side, which Quan Chi cleverly finds and sabotages.
Match 3: Scorpion & Hsu Hao
The attack which begins the match and makes Sektor warp strangely is a morph combo into a teleport punch. The effect is glitched, so it looks like that.
The teleport punch (with a freebie missile) to a hit to another teleport punch... is not a true infinite, I think, although CPU seems suspectible to it.
Messing with the 2.5 dimension with J. Cage and co. It was not easy to uphold the glitched state for as long as I do on the vid, not to mention to do a juggle in the middle and not have the game correct the characters' positions.
If you cast a spear right before Scorpion morph ends, it's properties become glitched and it launches the enemy into the air (unlike normally).
The part with Sareena contains the first instance of "faster moving speed" technique inside a combo. If it weren't for it, that multi-hitting dagger attack wouldn't hit full 3 times.
Fatality: "Get your filthy spear off me!" Sektor is very serious about these things.
Mid-way narration:
That was the first few matches. How's it been? Feeling any fatigue..? No...? Good for you! Well, I thought it might be nice if I took the time to educate you on why Sektor's teleport punch rocks so hard. For one, it's a fast, inexpensive way to move around on the battlefield! No better way to keep up on your opponent's heels. Second, if it connects, it makes for a nice, juicy juggle starter! Third, Sektor's advanced technology simulates ground contact for a few frames after the air punching has ceased. During this time he is allowed to shoot a freebie missile that has no cooldown because it becomes cancelled as he continues to fall down! Cool, huh? And, uh... I'm not supposed to mention this out loud, but hey. For you, just this once, ok? If he teleports while his opponent is switching characters with Tag, once in a blue moon, something really strange may happen... Ok, I'll shut up now.
Match 4: Johnny Cage & Nitara
I believe Drahmin's Ground Shaker is a guaranteed hit after enemy is knocked down.
Drahmin showcases faster movement while sidestepping - without this technique, he would get hit by Cage's kick.
Cyrax's Detonator is always fun to use for juggles.
That sawblade move Sektor uses as a juggle ender is a disabled move which is normally only accessible with Cyrax. Likewise, the Hsu Hao's "stomp" combo finisher is AFAIK a disabled move.
Fatality: well... nothing in particular. A glitch in which the tackled character does not rise up, Hsu Hao dancing trepak on the opponent's head and a horrid palette swapped Nitara.
Match 5: Sareena & Mavado
Raiden's electro-grab is extremely effective as a combo finisher. It deals its usual damage although it resolves in this way, which doesn't look sensible at all.
Mavado is a lame character with limited juggles, so he won't get much air time here.
Fatality: Shang Tsung shows the nationalistic side of his, and paints (what is assumedly) the flag of the Outworld with the blood of his enemy.
Match 6: Drahmin & Quan Chi
For those of you who like big numbers, I made a 95% damage combo just for you!
The second variation of teleport/Tag glitch, in which the two characters seemingly end up an arena's width apart from each other.
The last combo of the movie is pretty interesting. Only possible against a wall, it utilizes a backwards jump kick as a viable attack in the middle of a juggle.
Like the commentator says, "Finish TAG!", player 1 puts an end to the whole ordeal...
Amount of times morphed into different characters:
Bo Rai Cho II
Quan Chi III
Scorpion I
Johnny II
Raiden II
Sareena I
Nitara II
Mavado I
Hsu Hao II
Cyrax III
Drahmin II
Sektor III
End narration:
There you have it. 'Twas another triumphant victory for the sorcerer Shang Tsung, who managed to defeat all of his opposition without even taking a scratch... Life is good, isn't it? I'm telling ya, it really hits you once you're 1000 years old... finally seeing a cake in front of you with 1000 candles on it. You start to see life in a different way, you could almost say a new sort of thirst is evoken in you. You'd literally do anything to just keep going for another day. And I mean anything. Ahem... and this brings me to an unfortunate point which I feel I must break to you before we part ways: while you were watching the fight, your life energy was slowly drained out of your body. By me. To paraphrase, "yo soul is mine". Jeez, what a tired saying, but I think that's what gets to you young'uns. Yes, it was me, Shang Tsung, narrating all along, now standing upon your rapidly cooling body with your unsuspecting soul warming my belly. Well, can't say I feel sorry for you, you could've been just a little bit more suspicious about my act. I mean, damn. Well, adios.
And that, as they say, is that. I think that was everything...

Mister Epic: Added YouTube module + HQ Streaming link

DarkKobold: Claimed.

DarkKobold: The last few comments and votes were enough to push it in the right direction. Accepting. Thanks to everyone who voted and commented.

Mister Epic: I'll publish this. That screenshot poll is ended. Due to the amount of votes, I'm going to use this screenshot, unless there's an objection. Thank you for your opinion.

Last Edited by Ilari on 11/7/2011 8:03 AM
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