#6950: Noxxa & EZGames69's SMS Super Boy 4 in 10:03.01

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SMS Super Boy 4 in 10:03.01 by Noxxa & EZGames69

Zemina's fourth take at a platform game on the Sega Master System which definitely has no relation to Super Mario Brothers. Super Boy traverses through 16 levels and a couple bossfights in order to rescue what is definitely not Princess Toadstool.

Game objectives

  • Emulator used: BizHawk 2.5.2
  • Aims for fastest time
  • Some glitch abuse

About the game

Super Boy 4 is a platforming game exclusive to the Sega Master System, released by South Korean company Zemina in 1992. It is the fourth and last game of the Super Boy series, and the only one exclusive to the Sega Master System (all previous ones also were released for MSX).
The game contains 16 stages, loosely divided by 4 worlds, and a final boss stage. In each stage, Super Boy has to reach the end of the stage and break a special block which contains a gem that ends the stage when collected. Along the way, various enemies and hazardous stage layouts (that definitely were not ripped straight from Super Mario World) try to prevent Super Boy from saving the princess.

Tricks and mechanics

Lag

This game lags a lot, in two different ways. For one, input polling is not consistent, and regularly, input polling is skipped for a frame. Naturally, this makes doing some precise jumps a massive pain. It also has conventional slowdown lag whenever more than a few enemies are active on screen - a large part of optimization is keeping this lag down by stomping on enemies.
Lag optimization can be very tricky or counter-intuitive sometimes - for example, near the start of stage 13 Super Boy bumps into a wall on purpose just because it saves more frames from reducing lag frames that way.

Jumping on enemies

Most enemies in the game can be jumped off in order to defeat them. This is often done to cut down on lag. A notable issue however is that there is no control of jump height after jumping off an enemy - Super Boy will always jump to the maximum height. This is a problem when jumping off an enemy often sends you off into a pit further ahead. Sometimes some compromises have to be made to

Acceleration

Running physics are quite weird in this game. There's a distinct difference between whether movement will make the camera advance or not; if it does, then Super Boy goes forward at a consistent 2px/frame. If not, some acceleration is involved before maxing out at 2px/frame. Turning around is likewise dependent on player position relative to the camera; if the player is at the camera "boundary", trying to reverse position will immediately put Super Boy at a full stop, but he won't start moving into the other direction until he has finished "decelerating" his momentum from the direction he was moving towards, which takes a long time. Otherwise, he will decelerate as normal (albeit still rather slowly).
Basically, it does not make a lot of sense.

Corner boosting

If Super Boy jumps into the corner of a solid block, enough that it isn't detected as outright hitting from below, he will be ejected out 3 pixels. Sometimes this can be applied for consecutive frames, allowing a 6 pixel boost. Finding places to apply corner boosts is a key part of optimizing movement beyond just accelerating to maximum running speed.
Corner boosting can even be done off invisible blocks - scouting out for invisible blocks that could be helpful for any purpose was an important aspect of making sure no opportunity for saving frames was missed.

Floor overflow

Normally, falling into a bottomless pit kills Super Boy. However, having a specific vertical speed and positioning, achieved from doing a short jump from a bottom-most possible tile, will cause Super Boy to not die, but overflow position to the top of the screen instead. This is used in a few stages to skip some stage geometry.

Final stage boss skips

In the final stage, there are two boss enemies, which must be defeated to progress in the stage, as otherwise progress will be blocked by large walls that normally cannot be passed. However, through floor overflow these walls can be bypassed anyway, rendering the requirement to actually defeat the boss enemies moot.

Stage-by-stage comments

TODO

Other comments

Screenshot:
Thanks for watching!

ThunderAxe31: Judging.
ThunderAxe31: Optimization seems solid. Entertainment is borderline, but the audience response seemed slightly positive to me, so... Accepting for Moons.
Zinfidel: Processing...

TASVideoAgent
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This topic is for the purpose of discussing #6950: Noxxa, EZGames69's SMS Super Boy 4 in 10:03.01
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Yes vote, for another bootleg tas! Interesting read on the description too.
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Super Boy World deserves a yes! Can't wait for Antaasas, p4plus2 and Masterjun come with a Credits Warp run.
Games are basically math with a visual representation of this math, that's why I make the scripts, to re-see games as math. My things: YouTube, GitHub, Pastebin, Twitter
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Exotic platforms TAS of 2020
I saved 3 frames at the end of stage 12 with a different strat: http://tasvideos.org/userfiles/info/67831165385882769 Unfortunately, it desyncs in the next stage. The game doesn't seem sync friendly at all (considering the constant lag) so I understand if the authors don't care to implement this. Figured it was worth documenting anyway. I spent a couple of hours looking through the rest of the movie and didn't notice any obvious improvements, so I don't think there are glaring problems with the optimisation or anything, it's just this one thing. Yes vote!
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/Really_Tall Twitter: https://twitter.com/Really_Tall Discord: Really_Tall#3582
Synahel
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Oh no, i played and finished this game, and if it's not as painful as the 2 first games (was there ever a super boy 3? i've never seen it), it's still pretty rough Amazed by all the optimizations here and there though, and glad you don't have to change directions too often, it's very painful Love the propelled bullet bills, at least a variation on what would otherwise be totally not a huge copyright infrigement
ThunderAxe31
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Gameboy TASer of 2017
Really_Tall wrote:
I saved 3 frames at the end of stage 12 with a different strat: http://tasvideos.org/userfiles/info/67831165385882769 Unfortunately, it desyncs in the next stage. The game doesn't seem sync friendly at all (considering the constant lag) so I understand if the authors don't care to implement this. Figured it was worth documenting anyway.
Is there anyone there who's planning to complete the improvement to this submission?
my personal page - my YouTube channel - my GitHub - my Discord: ThunderAxe31#1512 <Masterjun> if you look at the "NES" in a weird angle, it actually clearly says "GBA"
Noxxa
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Exotic platforms TASer of 2018Exotic platforms TAS of 2018Exotic platforms TASer of 2017Exotic platforms TAS of 2017Exotic platforms TAS of 2017Exotic platforms TASer of 2016Exotic platforms TAS of 2016Gameboy TASer of 2013
ThunderAxe31 wrote:
Really_Tall wrote:
I saved 3 frames at the end of stage 12 with a different strat: http://tasvideos.org/userfiles/info/67831165385882769 Unfortunately, it desyncs in the next stage. The game doesn't seem sync friendly at all (considering the constant lag) so I understand if the authors don't care to implement this. Figured it was worth documenting anyway.
Is there anyone there who's planning to complete the improvement to this submission?
No. None of us (who worked on the game/this improvement) are even confident that this improvement doesn't get eaten up by lag in later stages, anyway.
http://www.youtube.com/Noxxa (formerly known as Mothrayas) <dwangoAC> This is a TAS (...). Not suitable for all audiences. May cause undesirable side-effects. May contain emulator abuse. Emulator may be abusive. This product contains glitches known to the state of California to cause egg defects. <Masterjun> I'm just a guy arranging bits in a sequence which could potentially amuse other people looking at these bits <adelikat> In Oregon Trail, I sacrificed my own family to save time. In Star trek, I killed helpless comrades in escape pods to save time. Here, I kill my allies to save time. I think I need help.
Post subject: need more feedback...
ThunderAxe31
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Gameboy TASer of 2017
I need to have more feedback, please... Can anyone post their thoughts and feelings about this movie?
my personal page - my YouTube channel - my GitHub - my Discord: ThunderAxe31#1512 <Masterjun> if you look at the "NES" in a weird angle, it actually clearly says "GBA"
dekutony
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Dang, so finally someone has made a full TAS of this game. I enjoyed this movie for what it was and so I voted yes... I just wish the sound wasn't so loud and had this weird buzzing effect.
Here, my YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/dekutony
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After watching the run, I'm having a hard time deciding between a Meh or a No vote. The game has some unique enemies--at least, nothing I recall from Mario games--but the levels look too much like SMW, and the character's speed is at best comparable to Mario walking.
Current Projects: TAS: NES Lemmings. Wizards & Warriors III. Other: Zook Man ZX4 ROM map.
Post subject: Movie published
TASVideoAgent
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This movie has been published. The posts before this message apply to the submission, and posts after this message apply to the published movie. ---- [4350] SMS Super Boy 4 by Noxxa, EZGames69 in 10:03.01