Submission #742: quietkane's SNES Claymates in 15:21.92

Console Super NES Emulator Snes9x 1.43 v17
Game Version Frame Count 55315
ROM Filename Claymates (U).smc Frame Rate 60
Branch Rerecord Count 1454
Unknown Authors quietkane
Game Claymates
Submitted by quietkane on 7/7/2005 7:05:16 PM

Submission Comments
  • Fastest time
  • Uses warps
  • Takes damage to save time
  • Action/platformer
Recorded using SNES9x 1.43+, improvement 7. WIP1 Timing used. No other settings set. (Be sure to let the rom warm up before you play the movie.)
So this was a game that not many people played and/or liked. But I remember it fondly, and nobody else had started on it, so I decided to give it a shot. The story is absolutely ridiculous (yeah, a witch doctor steals this scientific formula that turns people into clay... and then gives it to space aliens?) and the controls are very rough, but it was fun to play on the console and it was actually pretty fun to record. (Especially the sections with the mouse. That thing can haul ass!)
This is actually my second run through the game, becaues my first run was just generally unclean. (I declared it an official test run after I discovered that I'd screwed up everything through Japan.) This run is about 30 seconds faster than that one, so while it's not exactly squeezed dry of frames, it's pretty well optimized.
General notes:
The blue ball is your slowest, weakest, and most fragile form. It moves the fastest if you keep it airborne. Depending on the slope and just weirdness in the rendering engine, there's sometimes a frame's difference between lengths of jumps. It's usually due to the game simply stopping for a frame, and I never quite figured out what exactly caused it, but I've pretty much eliminated it from the run. (Not that you'd noticed if I hadn't...)
Oozy the mouse is the smallest, runs the fastest, and has the second-longest-ranged attack. He's also the worst jumper (excluding the duck's jumps.) and the slowest attacker. He and the cat are the two most preferred forms.
Muckster the cat is the best jumper, fastest attacker, and can climb trees. He's generally good in any situation.
Doh-Doh the bird is completely worthless except that he has limited flight cababilities. He's a little faster when he flies than when he runs, but not noticeably so.
Goopy the guppy handles like a Volkswagon Bus without power-steering. Unfortunately, he and the blue ball are the only forms that can survive underwater, meaning that you're forced to use him on occasion.
Globmeister the gopher is used only once in this run, and only because you can't jump over his clay ball in one little section. He's a little slower than the cat, and he doesn't jump quite as well as the cat. He can dig loose dirt to unlock a few new areas, and his attack is the longest-ranged.
This game suffers from inertia. This means that if you're travelling in one direction, you'll continue at the speed you're going for a good little while if you simply let go of that direction. To slow down, you have to hold the opposite direction, and it's really hard to judge how long it'll take to slow to the speed you need.
Collecting gems is very strange. It seems like every fourth gem costs you a few frames at the end of a level, only that's not quite so. Grabbing a green gem will always cost you the 2~4 frames, but the smallers gems may or may not cost you an extra frame because sometimes the game will just count a remainder of 3 with the last set of 4. In any case, I did my best to avoid gems if I possibly could.
Picking up a clay ball powerup when you've already got the floating clay bit gives you an extra 10 gems, which costs you about 12 frames at the end of the level. So you'll see me take a few hits that it doesn't look like I need to take. Just to let you know that there is a reason....
Most forms can attack while running without losing any speed at all. The blue ball is the only form I know loses time when it does so, but I never tried with Doh-Doh.
Killing an enemy is undesirable unless not killing him reverts you to the blue ball or costs you time later because you can't take the hit that would save you time. This is for two reasons: it's really hard to avoid the gems they drop without wasting a little time, and the game actually pauses completely for one frame, just as the gems pop into existance. (You'll notice in the last level that I just completely ignore this; that's because I felt that the entertainment value was more important than the 30~40 frames I lost to killing enemies.)
Level-specific notes:

Clayton's Garden

I'm only here for 4 seconds anyway, so even though the mouse is right there, it's faster to skip it. Warp to the next world.

Cape Claynaveral

The path I take here may not seem like the fastest, but it is. I grab the gems because there's no reason not to. Warp to the next world.

Ooze Garden

Doh-doh's flight ability is both strange and frustrating. He can reach that platform from the ground, but not from the slighty elevated platform where I change forms. *shrug* The cat accidentally grabs one more gem than it needs to, but I'm fairly certain it doesn't waste any time. The short mouse section at the end was fairly annoying, and it's only 3 seconds so nobody's going to notice that it would've been difficult to do. =( Oh, and about those letters at the end: they're for a bonus stage. It doesn't lose me any time whatsoever to bump into a letter from beneath and it doesn't matter how many I collect so long as I never spell out "Clay," so it doesn't really matter that I collect a letter here.
--Odd note: The puzzle between the Ooze Garden and Lilipods was more-or-less botched in the first version of the run, but for some reason I never did figure out the time between stages is no different in this version, despite the fact that I finish the puzzle faster. Weird, hunh?


It's faster to grab Doh-Doh than to wait for the cat, but only by about 12 frames. (And I have to grab one or the other because the blue ball can't reach that platform on his own.) Warp to the next world.

Bungle Jungle

This was the only level in the first run that was truly optimized. In fact, I did this level 10 frames faster in the first run. (And even though the two runs are very similar on this level, the first version can't copy/paste into this one.... without hex-editing 12 frames in. So this is the fastest I could have done the level.) I'm rather proud of the leap down the hill at the end; it was pretty difficult to do, and it's much faster than running into the wall there before the first goal-point.
--Note: It's interesting to note that the puzzle between this level and the next will actually solve itself if you just let it sit for 10 seconds. I, however, go to great lengths and actually use a trick that requires frame-perfect timing to solve it much faster. =P

Fungal Jungle

We get introduced to the fish. I hate the fish. X| Anyway, the level's pretty straightforward. The jump onto that bridge right before the first warp was kinda tricky to do, but the rest was pretty simple.

Putty Pillars

I actually skip the mouse, here, because it just doesn't save enough time to make up for how out of the way he is. Some of the jumps here were pretty tricky, but I'm rather satisfied with the results. I don't grab the invicibility despite the fact that it enchanced my jump capabilities simply because I don't need it. It's only a difference of 16 frames, but still... it's 16 frames.

Muddy Moats

This level is sick. It forces the cat on us when we want the mouse, it forces the mouse on us once we'd like to use the cat, and it forces the fish on us. All-in-all, this was the most infuriating level in the game. (And it's the longest one, too.) I tried to be entertaining during the waits on the platforms. The gems I grab either can't be avoided or take too long to justify avoiding. Long fish section. Ugh..... at least it doesn't look so bad. The fight with Mojo (Or Jomo, or Bojo, or whatever he's called...) goes pretty quickly. It's possible to do it a little quicker if I don't take a hit as the fish, but I'm not exactly sure what the time difference is, especially since that means I have to wait an extra 12 frames at the goal.

Space Station Clavius

Ok, so those switches I'm hitting throughout the station? Those turn off the sparks in the last little section before the zoom tube that leads to the goal, plus the three sparks 'in' the zoom tube. You'll notice I only hit 'exactly' as many as I need to hit in order to not be killed outright by the sparks. There's a switch I skip which is only a second out of my way very early on the right-hand path. (Just to my left at frame 42763.) If I'd hit that switch, I wouldn't have taken the hit that reverts me to the clay ball at the end... but that switch is just enough out of the way that it's very slightly faster to just take the hit. I don't like how it looks, but I'm too lazy to go back and change it, especially when this way is slightly faster. The alien I kill on frame 43335 was a source of great debate for me. You see, there's a gray clay ball just up that corridor, so I wouldn't revert to the blue ball for very long at all. I never tested whether it was faster to take the hit and run or to stop and fight, but I feel that it's best this way because it would just look unclean to take that hit and make a mad dash for the gray ball. So consider that little section a very brief part where I choose aesthetics over speed. (Even though I'm not sure it looks any prettier to stop and fight, I decided I did not like how it looks when I just take the hit.)
Yeah, I was surprised when the thing closing on me didn't hurt me either. =D Neat, hunh? Not sure if that's a glitch or if they're just not harmful to the mouse, but I think that's about as entertaining as anything else I could do in that short span of time. Switches sparks, blah blah, I've already explained all that. On to the next level.

The Milky Way

The only auto-scrolling level in the game. And I have no clue why. Since there's no goal line, collecting gems doesn't matter. So I chose to kill as many enemies and collect as many gems as I could without losing time. (And I grab the star, which is a 1-up, if you didn't know/recall.) I also do my best to make sure that the shots stay "invisible." (The first few frames the shots exist, they're only 4-5 pixels. Then they start to grow. So by shooting everything at close range, the shots never look like shots, and thus it looks like I'm not really shooting anything.) You might not find that entertaining, but I like how it looks. *shrug* The controls for this level were a nightmare, and the collision detection is the strangest thing I've ever seen; sometimes it checks the position of the blue ball itself to see if you're hit, and sometimes it checks the ship. And to make matters worse, it's not even consistant about how it checks where the ship is; sometimes the exhaust from the engine is part of the ship, sometimes the nose is, and sometimes neither are. So I apologize if it's not all that entertaining to watch, but I didn't really have a whole lot to work with. The boss fight is much shorter in this version of the run. I got a lot better about staying close to him without running into him. No wasted shots, either, since I figured out when I could start hitting him.
Input ends at 55315, although I don't actually need the last two frames of input, as I've since discovered. But I'm not hexing it because I'm too lazy and I like the frame count being a multiple of 5. After the input's over, we get the ending (which is incredibly unsatisfying) and then the credits roll. (Nope. Nothing after them.)
Anyway, 'twas a fun game, and recording the run was fun. Hope you at least get some enjoyment out of watching it.

adelikat: Rejecting. While there is no major mistakes in this run, it lacks anything interesting/novel to make it a suitable TAS. Most of the game is clumsy. The mouse sections are good but there are too few. The author & others have mentioned the possibility of a full run. This may be better but still, this game (or at least the warped run) doesn't seem suitable for TASing.

adelikat: Accepting for publication into the Vault

nanogyth: Processing for publication...

Last Edited by nanogyth on 12/13/2012 7:04:28 AM
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