Posts for zidanax


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Experienced Forum User, Player, Published Author (203)
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I'm not sure I understand all of your suggestions. When you say that with leaving some people dead, each round of battle could be better with a good hit from me and a useless move from the enemy, are you saying that leaving a character dead would be good so that the enemy could be manipulated to attack them? The enemy doesn't attack dead characters and besides if I wanted to have a character absorb attacks I would turn them to stone. In fact, that's what I'm going to do next time for the second time I fight Gades. I tested it and it works pretty well. Plus the character still gains EXP, unlike when they die. As for reaching higher levels with fewer cores, are you saying that with some dead characters the others would gain more EXP? It doesn't matter how many characters are dead or alive, each living character will get the same amount of EXP, so killing off some characters would not make the others level up faster. Or am I misunderstanding you here?
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Sorry about the long wait. I was working on my Lufia run and sort of forgot about this for awhile. Dunnius has been really busy and hasn't found any further info on manipulating boss patterns. Given that doing so would probably require RE'ing the game I finally decided to submit what I have.
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Here's the next version of the run: http://dehacked.2y.net/microstorage.php/info/488719142/Lufia%20%26%20The%20Fortress%20of%20Doom%20%28USA%29%28WIP3%29.smv It turns out the first few bosses after the Goblins can be put to sleep by using Stuffed Pigs from Lorbenia, which I use to save a bunch of time here. Also, both Red Cores and Green Cores can be confused, which saves a ton of time leveling up and allows me to go straight to leveling up with Red Cores without starting with fights around Frederia. I put more effort into luck manipulation with the bosses this time. I generally used lua scripts more often and revised some old ones. It's not perfect, but it's much better. There were a bunch of changes in route up to the point before the Goblins are fought. Also, since I could put a few of the early bosses to sleep I didn't have to buy as much stuff early on, which allowed for some other route changes. I also learned that the Purple Cave can be skipped entirely by substituting the Purple Newt with a Grilled Newt. Yes, I realize that I could condense the two visits to Arubus into one, but by the time I'd realized I'd want Ex Potions, I'd already done Nazeby, which took quite awhile. So I left it as something to change in the final version. In total, I saved about 22 minutes.
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I suggest that you upload your WIPs at http://dehacked.2y.net/microstorage.php. It is easier to download from there, and it gives information about the movie.
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I was afraid that incorporating Hotarubi's ideas might mess up my good luck. Unfortunately, that is indeed the case. I got a worse pattern for Kalia that nullified my savings(I've kept a SMV of that). I tried pulling out improvements from before Marana Act 1 (i.e., hexing together the old version's pre-Marana stuff and the improved Marana). That gave me good luck on Marana Act 2's Kalia, but my luck ran out in Death Heim where I got a worse pattern for that Kalia (I've also kept an SMV of that). In order to get good luck in Death Heim too I cut out Marana Act 1's improvements too, which is really too bad because that's where the most substantial improvements are. I got worse luck with the eyes in Northwall Act 1, so my improvement at the moment is a grand total of 3 frames over the version that has Sir VG's apple trick. Luck could probably be maintained with a more extensive set of improvements if someone was willing to find out which set to apply, but I don't have that much time on my hands given all the hexing and redos that would entail, and it probably wouldn't amount to more than about 2 seconds improvement unless they actually managed to make luck on the bosses even better. I think I will go ahead and redo Tanzra and leave it at that, unless someone manages to find some other trick. EDIT: Here's the next submission candidate: http://www.mediafire.com/?t2c4hqn9j6mjk63
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In response to Sir VG: Bloodpool Act 1: Quick fall on the bridge actually loses time (you press against the bridge for several frames before moving forward again). Besides, I want that partial apple because it saves 16 frames at the end of the stage. Marana Act 1: Yes, the wait is to let the first snake fall far enough to bypass it. A rather clever idea on Hotarubi's part (positioning yourself so that only the first snake falls). I had tried quick fall before but as you suspected I lose too much time due to taking two extra hits. Northwall Act 1: This idea, on the other hand, worked, thus saving me about 20 frames. I've put up another SMV to just before Tanzra: http://www.mediafire.com/?aorrsyyx4r9o01x The reason I haven't bothered to do Tanzra again yet is because the Tanzra fight is rather hex unfriendly due to randomness and lots of lag, and I want to look at Hotarubi's stuff first. Hotarubi: thank you for the clever ideas. I will try to integrate them, and hopefully they will not affect my luck on bosses. I knew about the trick where you jump boost before getting hit because I saw it in your run, but I wasn't able to do it consistently. As you said, it is difficult to execute, but perhaps the example you just provided will help me figure out how to execute it consistently.
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Here's another version through to the end: http://www.mediafire.com/?519bg1dbqh4udwq This version incorporates Hotarubi's better Aitos Act 1 boss fight along with the revised Filmoa act 1 posted above. I also found a better way in Bloodpool Act 2 to bypass the goblin in the dark room. The lag in Casandra Act 1 is much less this time. The rest except for bosses is pretty much the same because I hex edited in a lot of what was in the previous version, redoing a few parts to account for randomness. This time I had very good luck in boss fights so I saved a ton of time as a result. Overall, I saved 509 frames, or almost 8.5 seconds, over my previous submission candidate.
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http://www.mediafire.com/?claawry3j3wapw1 Hotarubi, I took your new version of Filmoa and looked to see if I could find any improvements. I managed to save some time, although it's difficult to compare to your version due to the slightly different amounts of lag in Snes9x 1.52 and 1.53. The biggest timesaver is that when I was experimenting with the boss I unintentionally found a good pattern that is 10 frames faster but takes the same amount of damage. This new version is 49 frames faster than my previous version.
Experienced Forum User, Player, Published Author (203)
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I voted yes. I found it entertaining to watch Mario find his way through such crazy levels.
Experienced Forum User, Player, Published Author (203)
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Thanks for your findings on Zeppelin Wolf. Unfortunately, that doesn't really help in this case. What would really save time is a pattern where both of the phases are on either the first platform or the second. If one of the necessary phases is on the top platform, as in this case, then a hit will still be required regardless of whether it's the first phase or the second. Since waiting 20 frames gives me the option of having the last phase be one where the enemy is on the first platform instead of the top platform, I tried it but it actually gave me a worse time. I'll see if your findings are any help against Kalia or Arctic Wyvern. EDIT: unfortunately, Kalia doesn't seem to alternate patterns like Zeppelin Wolf does. I don't have to wait too long to get another pattern but that one isn't good either. I have to wait a long time before getting a third pattern, too long for it to be helpful.
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OK, here's a candidate for submission: http://www.mediafire.com/?qm893ua05b66c0y 233 frames saved in Northwall Act 2, 86 frames saved in Death Heim. Total number of frames saved is 1279 frames, or almost 21 and 1/3 seconds. For those of you who want some idea of the difference in lag between my run and Hotarubi's run, the difference in lag by the end of our runs according to the lag counter is 386 frames, or about 6 and 5/12 seconds, most of that derived from increased transition times due to the change in emulator version.
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Not sure what to do to improve luck against Kalia, so I'm moving on for now. Here's Northwall Act 1, 195 frames saved: http://www.mediafire.com/?ayy79p7s0lcflq7
Experienced Forum User, Player, Published Author (203)
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Marana Acts 1 and 2 completed: http://www.mediafire.com/?dm71xscdv1bvqbo 121 frames saved in Act 1 and 126 frames saved in Act 2. Unfortunately, I got the same pattern for Kalia as I did last time. I tried varying the wait time before entering the boss chamber but the other pattern I got was no better. Dunnius, if you're investigating boss patterns, focus on trying to manipulate Kalia's pattern. Getting a better pattern for Kalia would save more time than getting a better pattern for Zeppelin Wolf. Hotarubi, you had a good attack pattern for Kalia (the boss in Marana Act 2) in your TAS. Was that good pattern luck or did you do something to make it that way?
Experienced Forum User, Player, Published Author (203)
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I'm for syncable. It is my understanding that we want to see how fast these games could theoretically be played (entertainment is important too, of course). I realize that randomness in consoles can mess things up in some cases and that our emulators aren't completely accurate which compounds the problem, but if for example a more accurate emulator ends up being laggier I would still TAS using the more accurate emulator if possible *points at his ActRaiser Special Mode TAS*. A TAS made using the more accurate emulator may turn out to still not sync on a real console but if it is closer to what could be done on a real console, great.
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Here's Aitos Act 1: http://www.mediafire.com/?nlo1l6w10u0d58z An improvement of 43 frames. EDIT: And here's Aitos Act 2: http://www.mediafire.com/?3ta2c2dpwah3x8z An improvement of 118 frames.
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The Bloodpool Act 2 boss (apparently called Zeppelin Wolf) is indeed the first boss where randomness is important. The thing about that boss is I would be able to get a better time if I could get it to show up on a lower platform the second time it materializes. In order to be able to take a hit against the boss I had to kill a goblin way back in the room where you dodge spikes instead of just getting hit by the goblin. That lost me 16 frames if I recall correctly. If Zeppelin Wolf showed up on a lower platform getting hit wouldn't be necessary for getting a reasonable time. Also, I would be able to start hitting Zeppelin Wolf quicker. Therefore if you could find a way to get Zeppelin Wolf to show up on a lower platform the second time around without a significant loss in time (greater than about 60 frames?) I would try to hex it in. I suppose it would be OK if it showed up on the highest platform the first time. What's important is the second time.
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Casandra Act 2 completed: http://www.mediafire.com/?hei15i5tsptiiqt 81 frames saved, mostly from a revised boss strategy where I make the boss go to the right instead of the left. EDIT: Changed the SMV url.
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OK, Casandra Act 1 completed: http://www.mediafire.com/?k1c46xebbtv62mm There was much struggling with the first section and the enormous lag generated by those flaming clouds, or whatever they are. I was getting three clouds towards the end, thus generating an enormous amount of lag. I thus decided I had to somehow get rid of one of those clouds. I did some experimenting with various methods, but ended up using Hotarubi's idea of jumping into one of the clouds to make it run away. There is still some lag, but it's not quite as bad. I went ahead and got the apple at the top of one of the towers like Hotarubi did. It's a fairly big detour, but the big drop afterward and the tons of time saved not having to refill so many life bars after beating the boss make it a timesaver in the end. I found a place to use that quick land trick while ascending one of the towers, thus saving me a few frames. Overall, I saved 84 frames in this stage over my old run.
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I didn't know about that trick, so thank you. Unfortunately I only see one place within the first 4 stages where it could be useful--on the approach to the miniboss in Filmoa Act 1. Unfortunately this eventually introduces extra lag, thus nullifying the 2 frame gain that would otherwise be had. For many jumps, waiting for God to crouch is okay because you also move forward while waiting for God to crouch, and moving forward is your overall goal at that point anyway. For places where what matters is jumping from lower to higher platforms as quickly as possible without regard to X position(like in Filmoa Act 2 just before the miniboss) the height difference has been too great, so that attempting an attack late enough for this trick instead results in God doing a crouching slash. It seems that the height difference between the two platforms must be small. A height difference of 32 is small enough, but a height difference of 48 (as in Filmoa Act 2) is too great. Of course, if you guys see another place in the first 4 stages where the trick could be useful, let me know.
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Bloodpool Act 1: http://www.mediafire.com/?ildicdh2a0pbe72 A 56 frame improvement, mostly from using Hotarubi's method for the boss fight. EDIT: Bloodpool Act 2: http://www.mediafire.com/?t4s426fr52f7508 Good lord that was a pain. Once again, I got not-so-great positioning for the boss, with it positioning itself at the top once, where you're inevitably going to get hit if you want to dispose of it quickly. The problem is that I arrive at the boss with no hits to spare. With Hotarubi's new way of getting past the room with spikes I saw that I could get rid of the goblin after those spikes relatively quickly (lost just 16 frames), sparing me one hit to use against the boss. Also, Hotarubi had demonstrated a way to act against the Bloodpool Act 2 boss when it's at the top while taking only one hit, although I had to change it around a bit because he was using it against the Death Heim version which isn't the same. In any case, I saved quite a bit of time in this stage mostly since I didn't have to spend a bunch of time taking out monsters just before the boss. Now a total of 193 frames saved so far. I also stumbled upon an unfortunately useless glitch: http://www.mediafire.com/?vusqv00y0n85u2q
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Hmm, the lag counter is already coming in handy. It caught some lag in Filmoa Act 2 that I otherwise wouldn't have noticed, and was able to avoid some of it. Speaking of, here's Filmoa Act 2: http://www.mediafire.com/?9t2z3fzhaonm57m 16 frames improvement in this stage, for a total of 33 frames so far. Again a mix of Hotarubi's ideas and my own discoveries/improvements.
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OK, here's Filmoa Act 1 completed. http://www.mediafire.com/?0qjp4iw58e0hwpo This time play it back with Snes9x 1.52. I managed to improve over my previous run by 17 frames, some of it thanks to Hotarubi and some of it from my own discoveries. Because of extra lag during transitions and the point up to where you can select Special Mode, this SMV is still 44 frames more than Hotarubi's SMV counting up to the beginning of Filmoa Act 2, but rest assured that the actual in-stage gameplay is faster. Dunnius, if you feel like investigating something apart from changing boss behavior, see if you can find a way to reduce lag during transitions, like when you go from one room to another or one stage to another. I experimented but didn't find anything. EDIT: Strangely, some door transitions don't have extra lag in 1.52. The door transition in Filmoa Act 2 just after the miniboss is the same length (or almost the same length) as in 1.51
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If we go ahead and improve our run, we will very likely want to continue using 1.51 even though I think 1.52/1.53's extra lag is likely truer to the SNES. The reason is because 1.52's lua support is very limited (and 1.53's is nonexistent). This isn't a big deal for a Special Mode run, but for a normal mode run it would be bad because you have your script that you use in Simulation Mode and I have my Stardust manipulation script. Of course, by the time we finish our other TASes 1.52 and/or 1.53 may have better lua support in which case nevermind what I just said.
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Hmm, I tried playing back my TAS on SNES9x 1.52 and it actually didn't desync until the beginning of Filmoa Act 2. I inserted one extra frame of going right and that was enough to keep it in sync until the Bloodpool Act 1 boss. Those results indicate to me that the amount of lag in 1.52 is much closer to 1.53 than to 1.51. The thing about 1.52 is that unlike 1.53 it has a lag counter and lua scripting. What matters most to me here is the lag counter. I therefore think I will make this next version in 1.52 given the importance of minimizing the effect of increased lag from 1.51, which will be far easier with a lag counter. As for my cited reason of improved emulation in using 1.53, 1.52 still has the "big one" of incorporating much of blargg's research on the SPC700/DSP.
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OK, so I've finished comparing my TAS to Hotarubi's TAS. I went ahead and made a table with differences between my TAS and his for segments of each stage. It was... a humbling experience. Don't be fooled by the total number of frames in Hotarubi's SMV. The number of frames to final strike in his TAS is actually 77942. That's only a 383 frame difference with mine, in spite of him not using the walljump glitch! Sure, some of this lack of difference is due to extra lag in 1.53, but Hotarubi showed numerous ways of improving time in stages. Common themes included finding more ways to use the fast fall-forward trick to save time and better management of when to get hit and when not to get hit (getting hit can save time in some places, but you also have to consider the time spent refilling the health bar after beating the boss). There were lots of other things that add up. There were many places where I had managed the same time or even a faster way than Hotarubi, but nevertheless I was impressed with how many stage segments (and sometimes boss fights) he had done more quickly than me. I had surpassed the Nicovideo TAS's times in just about all of the stages, but Hotarubi's is even better in many segments. So now I am almost certain that Hotarubi was not the author of the Nicovideo TAS. Of course, I will reanalyze stuff to see if I can find ways faster than both my first version and Hotarubi's TAS. Hotarubi did a great job, so that will be difficult but I tend to surprise myself by somehow extracting at least one more timesaver. Expect a fair bit of time savings, barring bad luck in the boss fights.
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