From the manual: "Joe must find his way through the 16 rooms to get out of this nightmare. He will come across the floating eyeballs, Frankie the mutant Frankensteiner student ghost, Dracula, blood and fire dripping from paintings, ghouls and goblins , and even the dreaded Brainiac, a mysteriously deceased lunatic brain surgeon, who was whispered to have performed surgery on himself after his license was taken away. To get out off each room, Joe has to find the clue to the hidden passageways and secret staircases. To help you overcome these, please bear the following in mind:
- to jump up or across push fire/spacebar
- to collect items, walk over them
- to throw a silver ball press F1
You have 4 lives throughout the game and 100 seconds per room. Slide down poles and across ropes. each key opens just one door! Switches are reached by jumping below them. They set of both foul and fair happenings. Scareghosts's are released once you come into eye-contact with the floating eyeballs, their warners! If they appear, your heartbeat fastens until a coronary follows. Escaping from their scary spell is the only remedy! A silver ball can and must be used against all evils, but the following items protect against:
- Bats, bloodflowers and dripfire: a candle
- the coffin: a rosary
- the just solo flying dracula: a cross
- the brainiac: a mirror
while a falling block, be it pushed by thee, may cause spiritual harm on any attacker."
OK, so that's a load of crap :) But it probably explains to you what you're seeing.
So, basically, a platform-puzzler featuring Joe Kowalski, a recurring character in the Eurosoft MSX1 games appearing around 1988. I'm using the disk release here.
Important notes on playing as a TASer
- any movement has the same speed (so also jumping).
- once you start a jump, Joe will complete it. So, you can't stop a jump in the middle of it, unless you really hit a wall or so. This is annoying, because if you only need to make a short jump, you can't and you will jump too far... costing time.
- the game uses quite large hit boxes. This is a disadvantage: you can't come very close to enemies or you will die. But it's also an advantage: it quickly detects touches to the switches.
- some events take a while to trigger, like disappearing floors. Nothing you can do about it but waiting.
Comments on the rooms
- probably the level designers meant a different route, via the switch. But this one is faster :)
- taking the cross is not necessary, so why take it?
- taking the bottom platform here takes more time, as you have to wait for the skeleton
- no need for that candle, so let's skip it. I don't need the silver ball, but I got it automatically.
- a demo of annoying jumping behaviour
- now you really see how annoying the uninterruptable jumping is. It's not possible to make it to jump over the flower directly. The item is needed to pass the 'dripfire' from the painting.
- notice the slowing down of the game here... also, you can't make it to the stairs without waiting for brainiac
- here, waiting is necessary again for Frankie, as there's no way to get past him other than what I show
- jumping issue shown again near the start
- also due to jumping mechanics, no faster way around the dripfire... and waiting for the disappearing platform is also demonstrated here.
- nope, you can't jump over that brainiac nor that flower without dying.
- completely tricked this room abusing the large hitbox! It enables me to stay on the top platform (normally, the switch would trigger a bouncing rope under it, to get safely to the bottom platform) I can completely skip the bottom part of the room now and just exit to...
- unfortunately, Frankie is at the top of the room, so you can't jump over him. It's now a matter of getting down as quickly as possible, balancing the speed of a disappearing platform and running off of that platform... I do show a nice silver ball glitch: shooting it from very close to the back of Frankie, it kills Frankie, but survives itself! And I can pick it up later again (which is useless, but OK).
- the most annoying room of the TAS: you have to wait almost everywhere. Optimizing is to no avail... you can play a bit sloppy until passing that last ghost and growing wall.
- yep, you have to wait for the annoying ghost before you can pass it... just jumping around a bit to kill time. Still, it's a very close call to make it through the closing wall. Imagine how you should do this when playing live...
- Frankie is the most annoying here. You have to wait for him to make room and the "COME ON JOEY" blinking floor makes it very hard to walk/stand there (and even seems to slow down walking).
Check the intro story after the run :)
Yes, you have to wait quite a lot in the game, but there were some pretty interesting glitches to show, routes to optimize and timing things to perfect. Have fun with the run!
Here's my rendering of it:
feos: Accepting for Vault.