Submission #6747: dave_dfwm's NES Rambo in 16:54.13

Nintendo Entertainment System
BizHawk 2.4.0
Rambo (U).nes
Submitted by dave_dfwm on 5/15/2020 3:43:07 AM
Submission Comments
This NES Rambo TAS is almost 2 minutes shorter than the previous version mostly due to a previously unknown wall clipping glitch. The glitch allows Rambo to scale vertical walls on the right side of the screen, which allows for some substantial shortcuts and route changes in certain parts of the game.

Game objectives

  • Emulator used: BizHawk
  • Goal: Fastest time
  • Goal: Take no damage

Other time comparisons

A few individual rooms were improved from the previous run, but some rooms are a few frames slower. I had very bad luck with enemy placement in certain rooms that was unavoidable without using even more time to get a new pattern. Notably, the rocky cliff jumping room requires two short waits compared to none in the previous version.
In the floating eye boss room, the fence can be clipped/climbed. I was able to do this and get a frame-perfect knife hit on the boss to prevent him damaging me, but while this method was more entertaining, it was about 70 frames slower.

Other highlights and notes

  • The extraction point room is my favorite improvement and involves Rambo shooting missiles with arrows to save time
  • In the first frozen waterfall room, a certain wasp takes two machine gun hits before dying
  • In the second frozen waterfall, I fall onto a block that isn't supposed to hold me, and I jump out of the bottom of the screen. This allows me to avoid the enemy below and land on higher rocks.
  • The cave is completed faster and has more kills in the dark without stopping to use the knife
  • I use a new warehouse route that (to my knowledge) hasn't been used in any other speedrun or TAS
  • As before, weapon switching causes a ~20 frame pause to happen unless it is done at the edge of a screen
  • I noticed that I coincidentally ended this TAS with the exact same amount of EXP as the previous version, despite skipping parts. I did a lot more killing in this version.
  • I get two level ups in the same room of the warehouse (one on the way in, one on the way out)
  • When going in North/South blocks, you can take damage from a nearby enemy even if you enter the block before taking damage. This had to be avoided two times in the movie. Once was a bubble, and the other was a bullet in the final POW camp area. That's why you see what looks like extra movement - it was necessary to avoid damage.


Thanks to Brossentia and WhiteHat94. Even though I never worked with them directly, their speedruns gave me some guidance on routing with the wall clip glitch. WhiteHat94's speedrun is extremely well done and is faster than the original TAS.

Memory: Judging
Memory: I've seen a lot of people suggesting Vault for this run, which makes the "avoids damage" a sort of flaw. I looked into it further and found a way to cancel damage, allowing for a ton of time saved over the course of the run. However, this alone might not be enough to cause a rejection, but I also just found tons of other simple optimizations to save time over the course of the TAS. I'm working on an improvement and have a WIP linked through this post. I feel more time should have been spent on this one.
Last Edited by adelikat on 11/4/2023 1:25 PM
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