Submission #7756: Reya's GC Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door "All Crystal Stars" in 2:56:47.87

(Link to video)
System Nintendo GameCube Emulator Dolphin 5.0 [LUA Core]
Game Version JPN Frame Count 636472 (Cycle Count 5155418041494)
ROM Filename Paper Mario RPG.iso Frame Rate 60
Branch All Crystal Stars Rerecord Count 33386
! Sram Authors Reya
Game Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door
Submitted by Reya on 10/26/2022 11:20:54 PM

Submission Comments

Game Overview:

Paper Mario: The Thousand-Year Door is an RPG developed by Intelligent Systems. The Thousand-Year Door is the second game in the Paper Mario series following Paper Mario, and is part of the larger Mario franchise. In the game, when Mario and Princess Peach get involved in the search for a mystic treasure that holds great fortune, Peach is kidnapped by an alien group called the X-Nauts; Mario sets out to find the treasure and save the princess.
This is the first recorded TAS of the category "All Crystal Stars" and manages to achieve a time under the 3 hour mark, which is over half an hour faster than the current RTA WR set by SwayNC on 01/21/2021.

Syncing:

  • Emulator used: Dolphin 5.0 LUA Core
  • Idle Skipping off
  • Dual Core off
  • DSP LLE audio recompiler
  • Memory Card in Slot A
  • Uses OpenGL
  • 6x Native internal resolution
  • No Anti-Aliasing
  • 1x Anisotropic Filtering
  • Enable MMU under game properties

Objectives:

  • Obtain all seven of the games "Crystal Stars" as fast as possible
  • RNG manipulation
  • Sequence breaking
  • Taking damage to save time
  • Abusing save files
  • Abusing the item system
  • Abusing programming errors several times
I use the Japanese ISO with the MD5 checksum: bec52fb8c1912bc6f8014801b6281422

Highlighted Glitches and Skips of "All Crystal Stars"

Blue Key Skip "EVT Overflow" (Discovered by SolidifiedGaming):

RTA demonstration of "Blue Key Skip"
In Chapter 2 there are 2 cages which each contain a set of Punies, the Red Cage contains the Puny Elder which is opened near the start of the chapter to have 10 Punies join Mario's party, and the Blue Cage which contains another 90 Punies. In order to acquire the Blue Cage Key we must traverse further into the Great Tree and solve a couple puzzles, then go back to the cages and free the 90 Punies. However, there is a glitch that we can do to open the Blue Cage without needing the key. Using an "EVT overflow", we can essentially trick the game into setting our EVT (event) sequence to when the door unlocks, so if I mash A when unpausing to activate the keyhole unlock cutscene, the game will let me open the door without the use of a key, saving a couple minutes. (read description on the video above for a detailed explanation on "EVT overflow", and how it's applied for this glitch)

Bookcase Jump:

Bookcase Jump is a sequence break in Glitzville that allows me to skip the majority of Chapter 3. Later in the chapter, there is a cutscene that occurs by entering Grubba's office through an air vent, setting the game's sequence to right before the chapter's boss fight. By denying Grubba's offer to sign up for the Glitzville tournament at the beginning of the chapter, Mario is able to move around Grubba's office freely. With that, I am able to make a precise jump up the bookcase, walk through and into the air vent, triggering the end of the chapter and effectively skipping all of the minor and major league battles, which saves a substantial amount of time.

Vivian Skip (Discovered by SolidifiedGaming):

RTA demonstration of "Vivian Skip"
In Chapter 4, Mario runs into a suspicious character named Doopliss at Creepy Steeple. Mario manages to beat him, but gets his body stolen mid fight, and now Mario's party is with this "fake" Mario, who is actually Doopliss. Mario is now just a purple shadow with no name, he ends up going back to Twilight Town and meets one of the Shadow Sirens; Vivian. She ends up joining Mario's party, and you use her ability to get past a few puzzles back at Creepy Steeple in order to progress the chapter further. This requires a fair amount of backtracking, and takes up a large chunk of time. However, SolidifiedGaming found a way to completely skip acquiring Vivian. In the video, you'll see that we can use a Super Jump to trigger the Doopliss cutscene while still being able to move around, this allows for some interesting cutscene interactions after the fight. But first, I need to obtain Jump Storage. By saving and copying the file back at Flurrie's House in Chapter 2, I'm able to use the Flurrie cutscene in order to acquire Jump Storage. Following that, I proceed to get a game over and that will allow me to carry over the Jump Storage state into the main Chapter 4 file. I then use a Super Jump to trigger the Doopliss cutscene and initiate the fight. Afterwards, I'm able to move around the room freely, this allows me to leave the room between when Mario's partners are taken from the menu, and the partner we have out is removed. With this newly obtained "fake partner" I can keep them out to do the previously mentioned puzzle at Creepy Steeple that normally requires Vivian by using a Double Jump to get past the door. I can then proceed through the chapter as normal until right before Doopliss 2, otherwise having a partner out other than Vivian will cause the game to crash. I first need to save and reload to remove them before Doopliss 2 since the partner will only be kept out on reload if we have them in our menu. As I trigger the cutscene, the game sets my sequence and puts Vivian in my party. This glitch skips talking to Vivian and her joining our party, as well as 1 full trip through the forest, saving around 3 minutes. In actuality, this trick saves about 5 minutes in Chapter 4 alone, but we have to take into account the time it takes to save and copy the file back in Chapter 2. As well as the 2 reloads that are required for the trick to work.

Various Chapter 5 Timesavers:

Bobbery Early:
By Goombella buffering through a loading zone, I am able to traverse around the back seam of the room and fall down 1,000 units to where a couple enemies are stored. After the fight, the game now sets my sequence to a Chapter 5 State, skipping all of the Pre-Chapter 5 setup saving several minutes.
Pirate's Grotto Early:
By using Yoshi right as I grab an item, I'm able to obtain Jump Storage. I can then Super Jump over an invisible wall and use Bobbery to blow up a portion of the grotto entrance from out of bounds, and skip a couple trips to and from the camp site, as well as a puzzle, saving a couple minutes.
Lord Crump Skip:
By using a Super Jump to access a normally inaccessible loading zone, I am effectively able to skip the entire ending sequence of Chapter 5. This includes the Lord Crump fight, the Peach and Bowser intermissions, a trip to the Thousand-Year Door, and all the cutscenes in this sequence, saving several minutes.

Ultra Boots Skip & Star Shot (Discovered by Sjorec):

RTA demonstration of "Star Shot"
In Chapter 6, Mario is normally required to have the Ultra Boots in order to get the Garnet Star and complete the chapter. However, we don't have the Ultra Boots, which refrains us from completing the chapter. That's where "Ultra Boots Skip" comes in. First, I get Jump Storage using Yoshi from a nearby Inn Coupon item, then I do a Super Jump up to the blue switch at the top of Poshley Sanctum. I have now negated the need for Ultra Boots and I have full access to the Garnet Star. But there is still one more glitch I can do to skip the normally required Peach and Bowser intermissions, as well as a trip to the Thousand-Year Door, the "Star Shot". I first encounter an enemy and manipulate an item drop, then I use that item to get text storage and encounter another enemy, allowing me to move around with a textbox. I can then swap to Yoshi and use the item again to get Jump Storage, do a Super Jump up to the left edge of the sanctum, swap to Koops, shoot Koops towards the Garnet Star and close the textbox at the same time. This effectively allows me to grab the Garnet Star in an unintended way with Koops, which ultimately avoids setting the flag which tells the game that I've finished Chapter 6. This set of tricks skips getting the train ticket, doing the train mission, completing Riverside Station and the Smorg boss fight, saving a substantial amount of time.

Comments:

There are a few things I'd like to mention. Firstly, this TAS was made solely by myself with no outside help (other than the discoveries of these glitches) and was just a fun little project that I wanted to do based on my own research and knowledge of the game. Secondly, this route is likely not the most optimal TAS route, what I do is heavily based on the RTA route just with some minor adjustments for things only a TAS can realistically achieve, like manipulating item and badge drops from enemies. Thirdly, there are a couple improvements that have come to my attention that can be made in certain areas of the game. Fence Skip to avoid talking to Frankly in the prologue. Kroop Skip in Petal Burg (which was discovered about a month ago, as I was nearing the end of the TAS). A faster method for Blue Key Skip in Chapter 2. Performing a Super Jump to get the Steeple Key early in Chapter 4, and so on. Overall, I am happy with the outcome of this TAS and I enjoyed creating it, and depending on the general reception of this TAS, as well as my motivation, I may or may not make an updated one in the future.

Memory: Claiming for judging.

Last Edited by Memory 19 days ago
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