Submission #8599: nymx's C64 Powerball in 05:53.64

Commodore 64
BizHawk 2.9.0
Submitted by nymx on 9/15/2023 3:05 PM
Submission Comments

Powerball (Compute's Gazette)

This outstanding arcada-style game's moving obstacles, special features, and different game screens will keep you thinking and moving fast. Certainly not your ordinary version of Breakout, where this is very addictive, and contains a variety of features such as capsules and slivers--and ten different screens to master.
The article for this game can be found on page 46 of Compute's Gazette Issue 47 (May 1987)

Why TAS This Game?

The continuation of TASing games from my all-time favorite magazine, Compute's Gazette. This makes my 34th TAS from this series.
This game fell within a number of magazines that I never was able to purchase. I believe the situation was due to my subscription ending and I not knowing that it did. Later on, I would start getting them from a magazine shop. By that time, I never knew anything about this game. What a great game this was and I surely missed out on playing it in my youth.
Previous Compute's Gazette submissions include (In order of submission):
1Astro-Panic!2Royal Rescue
3Miami Ice4Chopper 1
5Spike6Heat Seeker
7Omicron8Alien Armada
9Star Dragon10White Water
11Space Gallery12Bagdad
13Race Ace14Quolerus
17Balloon Blitz18Bowling Champ
19Circuits20Going Up?
21Space Dock22Saloon Shootout
23Sno-Cat24Queens' Quarrel
25Stronghold26Lincoln Green
27Disc Blitz28SuperSprite
29Dunk30Basketball Sam & Ed
31Bee Zone32Q-Bird
33Space Worms

Game Difficulty and Ending

This is a game that provides 10 different layouts to conquer. There is no difficulty selections, or any other options. Once a player has gone through all 10 unique levels. the game repeats again without any increase in difficulty. The real effort is trying to complete each of the progressively challenging screens.

Effort In TASing

This game was completely addictive for me to TAS. It took me about 2 months to complete. After the first round of TASing, I learned an amazing amount of tricks and strategies to further improve it on my 2nd attempt. Even with all that, my knowledge still increased and prompted a 3rd round of TASing, which lead to me getting highly frustrated. Yet, I prevailed and now I'm able to deliver a movie that I'm highly satisfied with.


This game presented some very unique BOTing opportunities. Basically, I used two different methods. One for forcing the "Grey" blocks to green and the other to force the "Capsules" to spawn as I needed them. The only part of this game that wasn't BOTed, was the routes and strategies. In my opinion, BOTing the routes and strategies would take an impossible number re-records to optimize any screen, due to the constant change in RNG affecting everything that happens on the screen.
BOTs Used:
  • Brutus: Used to force short frame spans for both Capsules (power ups), Slivers (making them spawn and move in a direction that I desired), and turning Grey blocks to green.
  • Splotch: Used to change the cycling of RNG for large frame spans. This was mainly used to spawn a capsules that was in a rare situation to show.

Human Comparison

Couldn't find one. Sorry. :)

feos: Claiming for judging.
feos: Looks really cool, accepting.

despoa: Processing...
Last Edited by despoa on 9/24/2023 8:04 AM
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