Submission #3593: turska's DOS Commander Keen: Episode 1 - Marooned on Mars in 03:40.70

(Submitted: Commander Keen 1: Marooned on Mars)
JPC-rr 10
Submitted by turska on 5/7/2012 2:23 PM
Submission Comments

primary 10bit444

Commander Keen: Marooned on Mars is the first episode in the Commander Keen games. In this episode, aliens from the planet Vorticon VI find out about the eight year-old genius and plan his destruction. While Keen is out exploring the mountains of Mars, the Vorticons steal vital parts of his ship and take them to distant Martian cities! The four parts are the Joystick (for manual flight control), the Car Battery (for electrical systems power), the Vacuum Cleaner (reworked as an ion propulsion unit) and the Everclear (alcohol for fuel) — see Bean-with-Bacon Megarocket for details. Keen must explore the planet, fight the Martians and their robots, find the members of this Vorticon outpost and wrest the parts back from their wicked, clawed hands!
This is a tool-assisted speedrun, you know the drill.
  • Aims for fastest time
  • Abuses programming errors
  • Manipulates luck
  • Genre: Platform

Movie information

JPC-RR v11.6 was used to make the movie.
This TAS uses version 1.31 of the game. There are no TAS-relevant differences between versions - this one was chosen because of wide availability. You can locate a copy of it on the official site.
Here is the ImageMaker report on the disk image used:
Entry: N/A            N/A                                      33 /
Entry: 19900101000000 b1e632ee0483b66c2f1dff487547753b      15568 /EGAHEAD.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 80a5870d9b48970333837fa0293561ed      57065 /EGALATCH.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 ed9a0d1736034c155555543263939fe7      17633 /EGASPRIT.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 3d9b5805e21a7cc7b248664b0b8f6494        942 /ENDTEXT.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 a44bcb798f931dc392903dcc5446c068       8565 /FINALE.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 476301a5a6ac41e39ea18d900e1c8e02       1859 /HELPTEXT.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 8b2b1f335bb49e0b81ad66af582de2ef      51190 /KEEN1.EXE
Entry: 19900101000000 075a98e05b6d5bbed80ec21420577582       1368 /LEVEL01.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 2d6b634fbce4aa357375d62300fb3e07        724 /LEVEL02.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 956f2bbf2ad4fe7c52ad90962bd92166       3474 /LEVEL03.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 57b24d48be8748362a0c5e2277d2d859       1720 /LEVEL04.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 1b6cd04bffb03fe26b722260da3316f9        810 /LEVEL05.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 7859497ced955aa87b4a935b43ae15b8        928 /LEVEL06.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 337259268ca2338ee4d16818cbcd59d4       5650 /LEVEL07.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 51b099927527e88f8450163d05c2ca39       3416 /LEVEL08.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 de0e0de6b46474e2f4f06fc9abfd3e61       1638 /LEVEL09.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 0bb9ac865cdcbd46bdcacd493669d499       2086 /LEVEL10.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 b341dd49e84d7580a9eb4280827a7251       1636 /LEVEL11.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 edf1eb3db5a424360996e82ecf1dba93       2178 /LEVEL12.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 0cb4b321cdbb2d69682c258788ce8e4b       9908 /LEVEL13.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 5d6d6814d7e7bf91dde2ec1792d45976       7024 /LEVEL14.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 09b0dc88bdb234d6b2efd5b8ac973dc0       2234 /LEVEL15.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 6ee167a36e7517320ff7ae6138f22e9d       5818 /LEVEL16.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 bfe6781e44056cbc248701ae192122ac       5638 /LEVEL80.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 b86086e33b4fb169f96abdf002fd64e3        758 /LEVEL81.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 dd1a09d6e332e0ae13c78670763ed891       1262 /LEVEL90.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 063d3bfda9c014b6395c1aa952ad2f8b       5714 /ORDER.FRM
Entry: 19900101000000 c8c4b2ce09a1d19d2763493c7e7ad44a      27886 /PREVIEW2.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 eaff03166eba1d1d5da749b0d687b3a6      25429 /PREVIEW3.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 c480310fb66b36854b293264dbf6d8ff       2160 /PREVIEWS.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 c726f4948d49c5b212cc6f6bc8a72247       8898 /SOUNDS.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 0f6e2c7fc0ec2df428757386b072b071       3504 /STORYTXT.CK1
Entry: 19900101000000 f8a5a377b9dbec63bba25148ea80adca       8876 /VENDOR.DOC



The RNG is seeded from the initial RTC time and only invoked when randomness is required. Having critters that behave randomly on-screen is the only way to advance the RNG. These include pink robots and all Vorticons. For details, TODO: make github or something


Oscillating movement

Every few frames, Keen moves one additional pixel forward unless he's not moving. The timing can be manipulated by entering levels earlier or later.

Exiting levels

Keen's position when entering doors is irrelevant - while he will be out of view faster if landing closer to the edge, the transition will still be equally long.

Level border funkiness

Some level designer somewhere thought that exposing level borders was a good idea. That wasn't the case, as demonstrated by both Keen 1 and Keen 2. The latter doesn't have any useful application for it, though.

Stage by stage comments


Shooting the rock requires ammo. Grabbing the ammo here would be slower. As always, luck in manipulated.


Having the Yorps and the Vorticon Guard avoid Keen is less likely than you'd think.


Not having ammo here costs some time, but it's still faster than grabbing the ammo on LV01.



The Vorticon cannot be manipulated to jump over Keen - by the time his actions become random, it's already too late for it to matter.


Input is ended early.

Special thanks to:

  • Xarthok: for following progress with devotion, helping with route planning and providing useful feedback.

Suggested screenshots


Nach: Very nice run, accepting.
Last Edited by adelikat on 9/27/2023 3:37 AM
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