Monster World 4
Monster World 4 is an excellent Japanese release only platformer for Genesis released late into its lifetime. There is no magic and a heavy focus on close range combat along with using a pet to assist you.
Jumping is the strangest thing in this game since all jumps have a fixed speed. You can be going extremely fast on ice, but the moment you jump you lose all that extra speed. However this also can be used to your advantage on slippery ice that usually takes a long time to start moving forward by jumping. Stationary jump gets low horizontal movement. 1 frame walking then jumping gives you quite a bit better jump. You get the max jump by moving forward 2 frames then jump. When jumping you can press the opposite direction to decrease your speed. Low hanging ceiling jumping can be used to move downward faster than running off ledges.
Running as much as possible leads to short sections. In this game everytime you land you must run again. To run you need 1-about 10 frames of no left or right movement and then left or right in the same direction. There is a backwards running glitch. If you run left then also press right you face right with no speed penalty. If you run right and press left then you slowly lose speed while facing right until you end up running left but still facing right. Running on Ice can result in faster than usual speeds.
On rare circumstances if you land very close to a ledge is it actually beneficial to walk off it. Walking is very useful to control your left and right speed though. Sometimes when running then jumping and slashing the character likes to go far away which is not beneficial in boss fights. 1 frame walking moves about 1 pixel and is used to adjust position in bosses frequently. It is possible to move in the opposite direction more quickly by releasing all directional input for a frame.
One Frame Slash (1FS)
When running off a ledge on a single frame there is a way to conserve forward speed for a time when pressing attack. You can perform the neutral/up/down slash. Neutral slash has a long recover time but the longest horizontal slash range. Down Slash has the longest recover time in most cases, but is very useful when enemies are too close to use the other options. Up Slash has the quickest recover time. I was a tech where if you press the opposite direction of running at the frame of the attack you still do the 1FS, but with less speed. This has uses where the landing area is short.
Press Down to Block. This blocks most projectiles and physical attacks. It has a slight upward block above in front of your character. I use that to block a falling projectile from a Bat at one point. It is also possible to do a Block while running off the ledge and holding down. You can use this to block projectiles while falling off a ledge although you experience some knockback and I think I removed that particular trick from this run. There is an excellent use of block to keep your running momentum when getting moving onto a ice floor. Blocking seems to moves you up 0x40 y subpixel value.
Standing Air Slash
If you input a Block then release, wait several frames later, and then press an attack input, you can perform an Air Slash of any type while still on the ground. Blocking seems to moves you up 0x40 y subpixel value and is probably why this works. This also has the effect of slowing down the elevators in the pyramids, because then you are not "on" the elevator and the elevator starts sliding down a couple pixels.
This is can be very useful on certain enemies since you can perform an attack above you faster than jumping then attacking. Note that this has a decent forward range as well. Attack button can be held for a longer time.
Most difficult to use attack. It has an extremely long recover time so releasing the button as soon as possible is key. Note that even when you are on the ground it still locks your input for a while. Attack button can be held indefinitely as long as you don't hit the ground. If you hit the ground while still doing a Down Slash you transition into a Block. Has a tricky to determine end frame since the animation plays for several frames more even though it will not deal damage.
Attack Button on Ground -> Block -> Attack
Then can be used to potentially decrease the time until you attack next. Good for a better recover time. Found this out fairly late. This is essentially the Standing Air Slash but where you wait an extra frame so a normal Standing Attack is used. This can be chained.
Basic Attack while standing or running. Has a pretty long recover time, but good horizontal range attack. For most of its animation it has the long range attack except near the end. If you attack after running your momentum slowly decreases.
Bouncing Off Enemies
Extremely useful technique that I use extensively. When bumping into enemies they will cause you to bounce with or without damage depending on the enemy. It is possible to continue to Hold Down Slash and bounce indefinitely. If you hold Jump while bouncing you can achieve a higher bounce. You can down slash and bounce on objects normally not "bouncable" such as the boss in the Sky Castle. Almost always it is faster to be running that bouncing.
You can Call the pet with A. This makes him come towards you and seems to mostly work when you are on the ground or are near him in mid air. If you get close enough while calling you can hold your pet. If you are holding the pet and are in mid air you can glide forward and perform a double jump. While holding him you can then throw him left, right, or up. The pet gets larger as the story progresses with the final holding form actually making you unable to move forward, but making grabbing him easier as a tradeoff.
Being able to control him and his path will decide if some parts are fast or not. Typically you delay calling him in a new area a couple frames so he will actually run in your intended direction. The pathing the pet sometimes takes to get to you is...interesting. He may take large arcing paths ignoring wall and floors. He may completely miss you and shoot off past you. He may take his sweet time coming to you if he is already close by. If you repeatedly call him the game seems to get a new path for him and sometimes this is the best way to get him to come to you. It has sometimes flabbergasted me how sometimes a single Call frame difference has dramatically different paths. He also has a rubberbanding effect so moving further away while calling him, then moving closer again can result in faster times to hold the pet.
The pet can take a hit for you from some projectiles which I manipulate him into doing.
The pet also performs special actions in dungeons to help you proceed when the pet is available. In the pyramid you need to have the pet turn into a frozen block to progress. In this state you can push the block while moving into it during a jump.
Infinite Jump Glitch
This is done by constantly holding the Call button, then jump and shortly afterward doing an Up Slash, then you grab the pet, then repeat. Found by a speedrunner.
There are several pet related actions and cutscenes where the pet will move to a specific position. Of course using the Call and releasing Call at the right time can have him hover around near the correct pixel position. The cutscenes with him eating the Growth Fruit are the most specific.
Go to the Water Dungeon using the Infinite Jump Glitch and bypassing giving the pet the growth fruit. Trying to have him put out the flame in his smallest form will freeze the game.
It is possible to have your pet freeze at several points. This requires using the Lamp, an item that allows you to go back to town to recover. This seems to be at points where the pet is required to interact with some object but he cannot get to it, but is close enough to start the interaction. The water level has one flame above an tentacle enemy and if you throw the pet up while being near the low hanging ceiling the pet can get stuck. Think I saw one of these in the Fire Dungeon as well with a similar situation.
In the Fire Dungeon there is a section with falling blocks and there is a zip here and you need the pet to do it. More below.
While moving right, hold left and right then throw the pet. You keep moving right but the pet moves left.
Throwing the pet against the wall and grabbing it again prevents you from moving left or right or jumping if you are also holding A. Releasing A then jumping will work to get you out of the freeze. Attacking will get you out or throwing the pet away from the wall next to you. Throwing up will also release you from the freeze state. After getting stuck its possible to throw the pet right while facing left.
Normally at this part when you are one the ground you will take damage and then be ejected up out of the block if you are still in it. If you are holding the pet on the ground the same thing happens, you get hit, get ejected from block, but still no clip. If you jump though and are hovering with the pet more likely than not you will get shoved into the floor. This is still not going to get you anywhere since you get stuck in endless hit loop and die. However if you are hovering with the pet while moving then you can see an oddity one one frame where your X position will be shifted slightly in the opposite direction from where you are moving. Doing this in a corner can get you slightly more to the right out of the area, but no matter what you do it still seems not enough to escape the fallen block. If you throw the pet though at just the right frame area while moving left you can get enough distance to the right to escape the block. Keep pressing left to get the zip and get ejected right. I found how to do this slightly above the floor by doing this as early as I could manage. This allows me more vertical height so I can starting moving right then left in an arc to get into the exit door earlier.
This is my theory of how it works. Normally when getting crushed by a block you can get pushed down to the floor. So the game will move you down adjusting for your height. When you are holding the pet you get pushed down for both you and your pet's height. By releasing the pet you somehow get locked into moving in that one direction so you get extra movement. And while in the wall you press left to move right, because the game is trying to eject you left if you move right, but pressing left will cause the game to eject you right.
Magic Shield Effect
The Fire Shield I bought has an effect of nullifying a fire attack. In my case it would be activated after 3 hits I think. Most of the run I sit on it being available, but I never use it since its effect also has knockback. Also, the effect only seems to activate when you are either walking, jumping, or running. Any other state seems to not have it activate. This mildly annoyed me since I wanted to use this effect on the last boss when he petrifies you. The damage output I have is not enough to kill the last boss before he uses it.
Not used in this run due to it being unknown if there is even a way to manipulate them. At first blush it seems like there is not. However if someone figures this out it could be useful to buy the first Magic Sword available. As it is now Magic Weapons are overall slower in DPS. Magic Weapons after a set period will add extra damage to an attack. How much damage Depends on the Sword. On WISHLIST.
Not needed since it gives you extra health. Heart pickups are sufficient.
777 Gold Trick
If you are able to get 777 gold, then the game awards you seven 1000 gold bonuses for a total of 7777 gold. I get this as early as possible.
Rich Gold Lover
This old woman buys gold bars that you find throughout the game in chests. She loves those plushy type pets so the first time you talk to her I make sure to have the pet to sell the gold bar for 1000 instead of 800.
Enemies seem to only have 2-3 possible positions and actions they take. To change their actions as far as i can figure is to delay frames. It seems that sometimes you have to delay frames a many screens away for it to have an effect. Also the delays seem excessive. One tested delay was over 100 frames away. If someone could figure out how to manipulate these in a more timely fashion this tas would be shorter. Some enemies are much more random then others. Caterpillars, Golems, Fire Ghosts, Orcs, and Jellyfish are my most hated foes in that order. Bats, Slimes, Skeletons, Ogres, and whatever else are pretty stationary.
Caterpillars are the worst. They will either be stationary or attack. Their attack will cause them to spin on the ground then they will shoot upward diagonally left or right hitting the ceiling then coming back down. Caterpillars really require RNG to be on your side in some rooms or it will be extremely slow. Making a big fat note that the "Arena" type area in the Fire Dungeon with the multiple gates is massively irritating due to Caterpillars potentially bouncing all over the place if you have bad RNG.
Not using this cheat. When you see sub hour runs on src or youtube this is what that is. It uses an unrendered merchant behind a bush that you can only talk to by never talking to the save old man until about 10 minutes through the game. He literally calls himself a mysterious merchant that was hidden there for debug purposes. Every time you talk to him he gives 9999 gold, and sells end game equipment, along with a "debug armor" that has a function that changes the state of your pet in the game...meaning you can get him, and get him in a certain growth state even when in the story you normally cannot.
This old guy in dungeons and in town allows you to save. Not used.
Depending if you are on the "Front" side of buildings or the "Back" will determine whether you need to press Up or Down to go through the door. Up for the Front or Down for the Back. The doors have arrow indicators if it is a door that has a Front and Back.
When running to enter doors you have to release the left and right directionals at least one frame to enter. On rare occasion releasing for more than one frame can give better position results. When entering doors from above it is possible to press the required direction Up or Down a couple frames before landing with again having a non Up or Down frame. Trying to cut it as close as possible to enter through the side edges of these dual sided doors results in faster times.
Doors that do not have Fronts and Backs will simply have one entrance. These require testing to find the correct time to enter them since it is possible to over-run the doorway. This will look obviously wrong since you will jerk back towards the door and will be 2 or 3 frames slower. Under-running the door is a more subtle timeloss and I had to go through checking the doorways carefully to try and remove this issue. Visually it looks the same at least to me, but if you watch the next lag frame's position you can see that it will be slower.
Most door types will allow you to press the direction you intend to go in on teh frame you press either Up or Down. However while I thought I saw that this was faster, on re-inspection, in fact it has no effect. Looks better though I guess.
Ropes have large delays when slowly inching your way up. Found a consistent input series to climb using them and used that. WIth ropes you can slide down them, but falling is always faster. When jumping onto ropes it causes you to hang off the opposite side. It is possible to change your position to the other side of the rope. Pressing jump causes you to jump off.
Elevators are in the Ice Pyramids and will move up as long as you are on top of them. They are faster than infinite jumping with the pet. If you block on them it will cause them to slide down slightly since block increases your height a small subpixel value off the floor on block release. If you happen to fall fast from a high height and move off the screen while falling you will fall through the stationary elevator and land on the floor. No use to this trick that I know of.
Key Item Use
All Key Items are used in the Pause menu. You go over the item and press C for jump when you are in the best spot possible do you don't need to walk to use it. Although sometimes a walk for a frame or 2 seems unavoidable. The frames for when you can change to the next item and when you can press C to use it seems to vary slightly at times. The ones that are due to input lag are obvious using TasStudio, but sometimes an item you have may cause extra wait frames. Saw this a couple times when I had the Bucket in my inventory in the Water Dungeon.
- Get about 20 gold in Trial Tower.
- Get Pet.
- Get Gold Bar.
- Manipulate Money Chest to hold 227 gold.
- Sell Gold Bar for 1000 for a total of 1227.
- Buy Fire Shield for 450 gold.
- This brings you to 777 gold, so the trick activates and gives you 7777 gold.
- Buy New non-magic Sword.
- After Fire Dungeon use the Infinite Jump Glitch with the pet to jump over wall in town to go to Water Dungeon area faster than usual.
- Buy New non-magic Sword after Water Dungeon.
- Before Final Dungeon talk to pet to get full health. Fastest way to get an extra heart that I need for the last boss.
A few obstacles on along the way. you can see some movements throughout the run. Use bouncing off a mushroom to skip going left and using a platform.
Silent Tower 沈黙の塔
For such an ominous name it sure has lively music and cutesy style enemies. The tower is arranged in such a way that most areas have a front and a back that have doors act as pathways. There are several areas that require killing enemies in rooms to unlock platforms or to get keys.
There are three main time saves here.
- It is possible to bounce off of the wolf in the one of the room to reach the key above. This prevents having to go around and get the key a different way. 4:52 in Video.
- There is one platform that moves up and down on the right side of a section which is RNG dependent. You want the platform to be moving down from the top just as you get to it. 5:23 in the video.
- The rope climb with spikes on either side can be climbed a little faster than usual if you do it quickly skipping a cycle. 5:30 in video.
The Boss gets stun locked if you keep jumping and stabbing. First jump and stab gets them in the loop as long as you move forward a little while doing it. After killing any boss in a level opening up the chest will move you to the town.
Town AKA Rapadaana ラパダーナ
After getting pet and the medallion to go to the next level, I use the 777 as described above to get 7777 gold. Then I buy the best sword available for now.
Fire Dungeon AKA Handera Volcano ハンデラ火山
This dungeon has a lot of dynamic elements as well as lava sections. There is a zip in one section that I describe above in the "Floor Clip". The pet is used a lot for switches and for double jumping.
The Harpy miniboss is defeated with bouncing repeatedly off of it from the highest left point. Bouncing is very effective in this game since you move along with the boss.
The boss has two large arms it uses to try and crush you so bouncing inside is the best solution for this. Especially since speedrunners found that you can jam yourself up near the ceiling and continually be in the Down Slash state while up against the ceiling. When the boss goes upward he will hit you, but being near where he lands allows you to hit him a couple more times to go to the second phase. Second phase all you need to to do is to Up Slash and he dies fast.
Here you need to upgrade your pet by feeding it a fruit. By calling him and releasing the call you can get him in position to immediately eat the fruit without moving. Then you can use the Infinite Jump Glitch to jump over the town wall on the right to go to the next area without needing the medallion.
Water Dungeon AKA Water Temple 水の神殿
The Water Dungeon is full of water ways and pipes that allows you to travel you around along with fire pillars that are extinguished by the pet to get rid of electric walls. There are two enemies here, the Tentacle Monsters, and Jellyfish. Tentacles have a long range attack so there is some waiting at points that attack to go away. Jellyfish are the snipers of the platform world, they actually account for the speed and direction you move so sometimes dodging them is difficult.
The mid boss is a Turkey. A turkey that runs around laying eggs that hatch birds that attack you. You Jump and use the Up Slash repeatedly in a certain pattern and a normal slash at the end when necessary. This method works very well to essentially stun lock him.
The Water Dungeon boss is completed fast by bouncing on him. Bouncing on him can be kind of random. You need to get the right angle and timing to jump up. I adjust the height of the bounces to make them as close as I can to hit him once the invincibility comes off.
Upgrade pet. Buy better sword. Get medallion and continue.
Ice Pyramids 1-3 氷のピラミド１ー３
There are three pyramids each with their own gimmick and each are like a maze. The First uses codes for the doors which you won't really see since I input them super fast. Second uses invisible doors that you normally need to use the pet to find. The Third pyramid has these very slippery floors and these large interconnected rooms. First opens the first time you talk to the Sphinx, the second when you defeat the 2nd miniboss. To enter the Third you need beat the Second's mini-boss and to answer every question from the Sphinx correctly. This level is by far the longest.
Use Google translate for the puzzles here...is what I would like to say, but it does not translate well.
I was able to figure this out since I know Japanese, but an English speaker would probably have trouble with these in the native Japanese. The fan translation did an excellent job here!
There are at least two fan translations. One is good, the other is not so good. One of them did not translate it in such a way that the puzzles can be done by English speakers. The better translation gave appropriate names to all the statues so that they would fit all the puzzles.
Pyramid 1 Puzzle
The Goddess and the Owl are next to the Swallow.
The Owl is to the right of the Black Panther.
The Sea Turtle and the Goddess are away from each other.
Pyramid 2 Puzzle
The hints are as follows:
The time where the end denotes the beginning.
There is a hint in the statue's name.
There is a common Japanese game called Shiritori where one person says a word and the game takes the last Japanese letter of a word and has the next person say a word starting with that ending letter. The better English Translated one does something similar.
So what the better English version did was rename them like this.
- ツバメ Tsubame / Swallow -> Swallow
- 女神 めがみ Megami/Goddess -> Witch
- ミミズク Mimizuku/Owl -> Horned Owl
- 黒ヒョウ くろひょう KuroHyou/Black Panther -> Leopard
- 海ガメ うみがめ Umigame/Sea Turtle -> Desert Turtle
In Japanese 「メミくう」
In English "whld"
Pyramid 3 Puzzle
Beware! One of the three statues is lying!
Statue 1: The Black Panther is on the far right, and the Goddess is second from the left.
Statue 2: The Swallow is on the far left, and the Sea Turtle is second from the left.
Statue 3: The Sea Turtle is in the middle with the Owl to the far left.
Ice Pyramid Mini-Boss and Boss
The floating Oxhead mid boss is normally defeated by jumping and slashing him, but here I found a way to bounce off of him. It takes two cycles this way. To do it you must get the right speed and angle. During the bouncing you must adjust the height of the bounces as well. The last bounce needs to be a hit, but short enough so that you also bounce backwards off of him and either get ready for the next cycle or to exit.
The floating Horsehead is similar to the Oxhead, but he swings around a morning star so he is a little slower to bounce on since you will get hit if you jump too early.
The Ice Boss I found a way to loop him into always attacking a certain way so he can be hit repeatedly. The ice is a concern if you move around too much, but with short controlled movements this goes quick.
Town - Queen Fight
There are hostile soldiers in the castle, but you can just use the pet to jump up and avoid most. You need to fight the brainwashed queen and the evil pet. At the start I got good RNG and was able to just rush forward and stab at the start. Then when she tries to fall on you, you need to Up Slash.
There is a really tight gap that you can use to attack her in between those things she throws.
Sky Castle 天空の城
Sky Castle has a lot of obstacles, no pet, and obnoxious platforms.
The Slime miniboss took awhile to get a decent time on. He has two phases. The first phase you need to kill 10 slimes for him to move slower backwards as long as you are near him. He will continue moving back until you can get into the door. It does not seem possible to go through him or get bounced out of him towards the door. I think they might have programmed him to always have some force pushing you to the left. I tried several techs like bouncing off of slimes to bounce on top of the slime and getting hit to get well into its body but to no avail.
In the first phase there is an the issue where sometimes an "Evil Slime" will spawn that is half inside the boss's body and it is difficult to get at. You have to wait until it bounces out. The first phase spawns slimes but you have to only kill 10 for him to move back, and there is a maximum of 3 slimes out at a time that spawn in set intervals as long as there are not 3 slimes spawned. a poorly spawning slime means the next slime will need to have a delay since I cannot possibly make it. So instead for the next slime after the bad one, I hit it in such a way so that it will overlap with following one. Then I can stack them and kill those two at the same time, putting me back into a rhythm. This will work as long as the horribly spawning slime does not appear as one of the last two slimes to spawn. Though it seems rare for that to even happen where it spawns and falls half into the boss...
The second phase I bounce off of him in two cycles and he is dead in short order. There was a manipulation where I run pretty far left since it seems otherwise he will shoot out a slime instead of jumping when he on the right side.
The Sky Castle boss uses attacks from his hands that target you. His hands are also his weak point. When he uses a single hand to attack it will be on the side of the body that you were on when he raised his hands. He also has an attack using both hands. That dual handed attack is a problem since there is normally no real safe way to hit it while it is shooting lightning at you and still hit him at the next earliest hit. However while his hands are not shooting there is a frame section that allows you to do a Down Slash and then bounce up. If you position him where his hands would be on the edge of the screen you can continually bounce. Here I only lose 1 frame doing that when he does the dual hand attacks.
Town - Queen Fight Round 2
The round ends when you lose your health. Here you just rush forward and with good rng I just get smacked with her projectile. I get hit so fast I actually end up rolling forward into the cut-scene even though it does not make sense.
Final Dungeon AKA Palace's Underground Fortress 王宮の地下要塞
Last Level has lots of areas with enemies where in some rooms you need to eliminate all enemies to be able to destroy the rock pillars that block your way. This level has repeats of the mini-bosses except for the large Slime miniboss.
The Harpy miniboss is dealt with in a similar fashion as it was before but with one Up Slash and then bouncing continually. There was a little testing to get the end position near the exit.
The Oxhead and Horsehead minibosses are harder here since you have no pet to allow you to bounce. Instead I try to keep them in a loop by running forward an Up Slashing. They are highly evasive and after they take a hit they really try to get away.
Last Boss has two phases. The first phase is four evil pets that try to bump into you or shoot lightning. I group them together and then hit the last ones a couple times as they come back into the screen. Tried to then hit them all to the left instead of off-screen, but it did not work out.
The Last Boss second phase has a dual headed boss where each have their own invincibility timer but they share a health pool. The heads move in such a way that you cannot hit them at the same time. The heads try to ram into you and hit you, and they can also shoot out a magic attack. This attack's hit box is not dynamic so the moment the boss uses the attack the full hit-box is used even if the graphic does not show it. When they are ready to use the Petrification attack their hit-boxes disappear. That full screen move is not avoidable with this setup. If I had the Legendary Sword then I could kill him before he uses the Petrification attack though. The pet comes in again and stops him from using it again.
- Cyclone (White_Zephyr) - After beating the game I watched his agdq run and that was when I decided to TAS it. Also
- tinahacks - Someone that seems to have created a lot of the strategies and gave me the tip for the floor clip and zip in the fire dungeon.
- zaa - For the extremely clean speedrun with the all bosses route.
- nagasode - His speedrun displayed him using the controller which was great in understanding how to do the trick with the infinite jump for the pet, and well as the "pumping" strategy for manipulating the pet position at a couple points.
- Henry - For his Gamefaqs guide. While not very detailed it did describe some details not found in other sources I did not know about.
- oblivion from aoc - Described the 777 gold trick to get 7777 gold on Gamefaqs.
: Claiming, sure why not
: Updating submission file with 146 frame improvement.
: The optimization of the TAS seems good, no obvious mistakes.
There wasn't a ton of audience feedback, but what was there was quite positive. The TAS has decently fast movement, some neat techniques and the occasional glitch here and there (the jump off the pet glitch in particular) but it's rather long. However, it still manages to stay entertaining throughout in my opinion.
Accepting to Moons.