Greetings, fellow TAS lovers. It has been nearly five years since we last saw a brand new Luigi run. Sorry to keep you awaiting for so long, but here we are presenting the finally finished improvement of 110 frames (1.83 seconds) over the previous SMB2J Luigi run.
(Suggested screenshot, frame 3742)
This run uses a suboptimal character, Luigi, who seems to have larger inertia than Mario (possibly because he's heavier), that appears higher jumping but slower accelerated speed. In some degree, those did bring lots of difficulties to this run, but we tried our best to take advantage from those abilities, and to make the best of Luigi.
While aiming for the perfect speed, we also tried VERY HARD to make every level as entertaining as possible. Wherever there are two paths with almost equal entertainment, we would deliberately choose a different path than Mario, and looks like we've done a successful job making a distinctive Luigi run differs from the Mario run.
Note: The re-record count shown in the fm2 movie is way smaller than the real number, because I often did some of the levels on copies and continued with savestates (which is not really a good habit), but that doesn't really matter.
Division of Work
KFCMario is a great TASer in our SMB community at Baidu Bar, and working with him is a delight. I was working on my own version of this project when he submitted his 64-frame improvement, so I told him there were more improvements and asked him whether he liked to cooperate with me, and he said yes.
KFCMario made lots of demos in levels such as 4-4, 5-1, 8-2, 8-3 and 8-4, but I found many places inperfect judging from the entertainment point of view, so actually I'm the one that does every input in this movie. However, 8-3 is mainly done by KFCMario with little of my perfection work. KFCMario managed to save 1 frame in the underwater stage of 8-4, and another one in stage 4 (unfortunately it was covered by my 3-frame improvement). The rest of the improvements came from me. KFCMario's demos are very important and provided lots of entertainment suggestions, and I'm much grateful to him.
- Mushroom trick in 1-1 - 42 frames are saved: Similar to the shell trick in Mario run, but this one solved two things at one time: going through the floor, and getting the mushroom. It was first founded by andrewg, and first proved possible and used in Luigi run by me. Mars commented that what an incredible track Luigi jumped when getting the mushroom.
- Faster wall passing and turning in 1-2 - 21 frames are saved: I managed to enter the first pipe 14 frames earlier, and entered the second pipe about 21 frames earlier using a faster turning movement on the pipe instead of in the mid-air. If we hadn't chosen 1-2 for flower-getting, those adjustments would save 21 frames, but were neglected in KFCMario's previous submission text.
- Better place of getting the flower - 21 frames are saved: One of the things that kept me grinding for a couple of months is that there are so many choice of places to get the flower: one in 1-2, one in 4-1, two in 4-2, and another one in 4-4. Though they all end up pretty much the same time, few of them can actually save 21 frames, and according to our test result, only one - 1-2. And I said with great pleasure instantly: "Alright, problem solved! No more bloody tests needed!" That became one of the major improvements of this run, and did make the run even more entertaining.
- Faster pipe entering in 5-2 - 21 frames are saved: It's an action that involves extremely strict optimization and pressing down and right at the same frame, allowing to enter the pipe with screen scrolling but without speeding up to 10, by optimizing the x subpixel value to 240 and entering the pipe before landing with speed 1, making it possible to enter the Warp Zone 12 frames earlier.
- Various optimization in 8-4 - 5 frames in total are saved (1 in stage 2 (underwater), 1 in stage 3, and 3 frames in stage 4): It's a fully optimized run, so nothing needs to be explained about the first two improvements. As for the third one, you can see that I made a turn on the pipe and jumped with speed greater than 24, which was just a regular test, and turned out to be 2 frames faster than KFCMario's demo that used speed 24 and had already saved 1 frame. The last improvement came so easily that even made me feel strange a little bit.
Level Comments and Highlights
1-1: A different route and the performance of the mushroom trick. The way I dealt with the very first enemy - the leaping Koopa Paratroopa seems to indicate that the best has yet to come.
1-2: Since Mario has found a quicker route through the first stage last year, it somehow becomes more meaningful for Luigi to keep his improved old route that differs from Mario, which is why I've chosen the wall passing glitch in this level to be the suggested screenshot.
4-1: There are a little music playing, mostly with the sound of the fireball. The reason why we didn't stamp on the Lakitu and fly to the flagpole like Phil did is that the action requires slowdown, and any little slowdown would probably cause 21 frames of loss in this particular level.
4-2: No need to get flowers, so I had fun playing with different kinds of enemies, and of course, nearly all of them were killed.
4-3: I manipulated luck a little bit for Bullet Bills, nothing new.
4-4: The most incredible path is taken, by jumping through the long fire bar. It costs about 3 frames for this performance, very worthwhile for Luigi, but for Mario I suppose there wouldn't be enough time. In the middle part I chose the upper route, and the Bowser was really killed by 3 fireballs, making this level surprisingly different from the Mario run.
5-1: Simply an entertaining level, one of my favorites.
5-2: 21 frames are saved while the entertainment is improved at the same time.
8-1: My favorite part, without a doubt, is that passage at the beginning where I had fun playing with all kinds of shells.
8-2: There's music playing at the very beginning, and it doesn't stop until the flower shows up. I never thought I can even make use of the sound of the Pirana plant gets killed. I climbed to the ending stage 2 frames earlier, but still couldn't perform the vine teleporting glitch.
8-3: The Hammer Brothers become more intelligent in SMB2J, making it hard to stamp on them without getting hurt, but we successfully stamped two of them with a little luck manipulation.
8-4: Various of performances, including music playing and "ghostrun". In the underwater stage I tried so hard and finally managed to kill the first Bloober that Mario couldn't possibly kill. To entertain people when crossing the long tunnel, I even made a poll in Baidu SMB Bar of how the music playing should be done, and some said I could play some Chinese song, some suggested songs like "U.N. Owen was her?", but none of those ideas would work out fine with the castle music, so I had to create my own type of beats that fits (hope you like that).
Credits and Thanks
- Mars: For helping a lot during making this TAS, including testing out the warp zone stage in 1-2, and reminding me that I could get an extra coin after the star block in 5-2 which solved the puzzling fireworks problem.
- andrewg: Without his telling me the mushroom trick in 1-1, I would probably start both Mario and Luigi run much later. That became the most important improvement in this run.
- imknown, and other friends at Baidu SMB Bar: For giving us support and advise on how to play in the long tunnel of 8-4.
- Phil: For making his wonderful previous run.
Brandon: Encodes added. Will publish once accepted.
Nach: Nice improvement, accepting.
Brandon: Publication underway.