Submission #4379: ars4326's NES Deadly Towers in 08:09.53

Console Nintendo Entertainment System Emulator Bizhawk 1.7.1
Game Version JPN Frame Count 29420
ROM Filename Mashou (Japan).nes Frame Rate 60.0988138974405
Branch Rerecord Count 1586
Unknown Authors ars4326
Game Deadly Towers
Submitted by ars4326 on 7/27/2014 5:28:58 PM

Submission Comments
Mashou (魔鐘) is the Japanese version of the well-known, infamous, and notorious Deadly Towers for the Nintendo Entertainment System. I chose this version due to it having an exclusive glitch that allows you access Rubas' Tower after technically obtaining only two bells.
This glitch is demonstrated by hisatoki's TAS on YouTube: My run improves this current record by 1:33 (93 seconds); as well Luke's current run on tasvideos by 7:10 (430 seconds).

Game objectives

  • Emulator used: Bizhawk 1.7.1
  • Uses death to save time
  • Takes damage to save time
  • Uses warps
  • Major skip glitch
  • Genre: Action
  • Genre: Adventure
Tricks Used
{this trick requires at least two death warps}
Normally, you're unable to re-enter a Boss Tower once you obtain its bell and exit back into the Main Hall (the entryway to it becomes sealed). However, you can enter Cold Killer's Tower again by going through Dungeon #8 (also located in Main Hall) and finding its exit. Before doing this though, you must death warp after obtaining the first bell. Otherwise, the second one won't appear for you.
Defeating Cold Killer a second time yields another bell, which is glitched. From here, you must burn them both at the Holy Flame back at the Main Hall, before death-warping a second time. Afterward, the glitch is activated -- which essentially places unlimited bells in your inventory. Going back to the Holy Flame and burning five more bells opens the gate to Rubas' Tower (and burning MORE than five steadily glitches out your inventory and the game, itself!).
Final note: Glitch was fixed in the American release of Deadly Towers. Specifically, you can repeat all of the above up to having a second bell appear after defeating Cold Killer again. However, this bell won't register in your inventory (tried it myself to confirm).
Along the way through the Castle, there is a set of invincible guards which blocks a shortcut leading into the room before the second mini-boss. Normally, you need to obtain an item called the 'Magic Key' to pass through. However, while these guards are impervious to damage, they CAN be momentarily stunned with your projectiles. With enough well-timed shots, you can slip past them and save about 12-13 seconds, each time you journey through the courtyard.
Special thanks to forum member Dragondarch
For speedrunners, this trick can also be performed in real-time. Due to doors in this game being skewed to the right, you will need to stun the guard on the right, instead, in order to slip through. This is due to Prince Myer's slow movement in the beginning. Once you have obtained the Hyper Boots, though, you can successfully slip past either guard.
Stage by Stage Commentary
ROUND 1 Courtyard - Dungeon #4 - Main Hall - Cold Killer (1)
My first trek through the Castle involved a major route change that saved about 28 seconds from hisatoki's run. After defeating the first dragon mini-boss, I entered Dungeon #4. This dungeon is very convenient for money grinding due to the close proximity of Orange Tower enemies and a shop that sells Orange Scrolls. The Towers can be manipulated into dropping 8 Ludder each time. Therefore, I entered the Dungeon with 60 Ludder (50 to start, plus two kills) to minimize grinding to a minimum. Farming five Towers gave me enough to quickly enter the shop and purchase an Orange Scroll, immediately warping me to the Main Hall.
Once in Cold Killer's Tower, I worked my way about halfway up and entered one of the game's Secret Rooms, containing a pair of Hyper Boots. In hisatoki's run, he spent a good 8 seconds standing in place and killing off all of the aggressive foes, taking significant damage in the process. I streamlined this down to two well-timed damage boosts: One to get the loot, and another to get outta there!
During Cold Killer's battle, I saved further time by targeting the faster, fireball emitting orb instead of Cold Killer, himself. This allowed me to get additional shots in quicker. I also timed my final hit to land the moment I moved to the top of the pedestal. By doing so, the bell was immediately obtained after viewing the kill animation.
ROUND 2 Courtyard - Main Hall - Dungeon #8 - Cold Killer (2)
Unfortunately, upon dying you don't retain the 50 Ludder that the game initially starts you with. This means that money grinding at Dungeon #4 (12 Towers, instead of 5) is no longer a quicker option. Fortunately, sequence breaking past the guards still progressively saved time from hisatoki's route.
No significant changes up to defeating Cold Killer again. Afterward, I retraced my steps back down the Tower and burned the two bells at the Holy Flame. I death warped faster by trapping myself at the top of the fire instead of along the bottom.
ROUND 3 Courtyard - Main Hall
The route itself is unchanged from the previous trek through the courtyard, although I strove to add some entertaining moments here and there to reduce redundancy. After burning off the required number of bells, I damage boosted off the Holy Flame and death warped within the Main Hall, instead of doing so outside.
ROUND 4 Rubas
Time for a showdown! The climb up Rubas' Tower tested my patience the most in this run, as the more aggressive red bats began to quickly multiply as I ascended upward. I advanced as straightforward as I could, minimizing the time spent preventing a bat or two from tagging me. I had just enough HP for one entertaining damage boost, which I used to obtain Splendor just before entering the Final Boss's Room.
Since I don't have access to hisatoki's movie file, I had to go off his video in order to estimate time savings in close fights such as this one. All three (Dragon, Death Heads, Rubas) appeared to be faster when I ran the emulator side-by-side with the video.
Possible Improvements
Besides coming up with a new skip, glitch or route change, you'd be hard pressed to squeeze another second out of this run. Good luck to whomever can improve this!
Suggested Description
Deadly Towers...when it comes to 'Nintendo Hard' games, you helped write the book. Who would've fathomed one could breach your walls, obtain only two bells, and beat the brakes off Rubas in just over 8 minutes?
In ars4326's run, the Japanese version Mashou (魔鐘) is used due to it containing an inventory glitch that, essentially, gives you unlimited bells after death-warping and defeating Cold Killer twice. New routes, sequence breaking, and movement optimizations are also involved in this updated run.
Suggested Screenshot

feos: Accepting to obsolete [503]NES Deadly Towers by Luke in 15:20.27, and to move to Moons. Publishing...

Last Edited by on 1/1/2022 6:13 PM
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