Submission Text Full Submission Page
  • Aims to beat the game in the fastest possible time.
  • Uses minor glitches.
  • Occasionally manipulates luck.
  • Takes damage to save time.
  • Does not buy upgrades.
To play this TAS, make sure Dolphin doesn't have any memory cards in. All other settings as default should be fine. On with the description!
Catwoman is a Movie tie-in game for the Catwoman (2004) movie, featuring Halle Berry. The movie received overwhelmingly negative reviews, and the lack of quality carried over to the game as well.
Catwoman features parkour and combat as its main selling points... and it can't quite do either of them well. When watching this run, you would assume that the game is relatively easy - which it is, but its also hard for the wrong reasons. Constant backtracking, buggy mechanics, mistakes sending you all the way back to the start of the level, etc.
Okay, enough messing around. Time for honesty. This game sucks, to put it bluntly. Horrendous combat design, complete lack of camera controls, and useless upgrades all plague the game from start to finish.
It's worth mentioning that the game is poorly optimized - 30fps, occasional pauses to load during levels, etc. Spider-Man 2002 was made for the same console, sooner, with similar time crunch, has bigger maps, and similar graphics, and runs at a nearly consistent 60fps with no mid-level pauses. It's funny because I'm not even setting the bar that high - a lot of people hated Spider-Man 2002. Anyway, onto the mechanical gripes.
First off - the combat. You can't KO enemies by traditional means. You have to knock every enemy into some kind of pit or shaft ("exit points")... except bosses for some reason. However, there is another way to KO enemies: inflicting enough damage on them that they go into "scaredycat mode" and KO themselves. Aside from that, every group fight is just gradually baiting every enemy toward the one extremely obvious hole in the wall to knock them in. It doesn't help that the devs decided it was a good idea to make some combat sections based on waves of enemies with a limited number of exit points. I do a pretty good amount of manipulation to trick enemies with guns to run toward me so I can KO them, since they usually just stand still and shoot at you.
Then there's the upgrades. I don't buy any during the run, but allow me to list them off and you'll see why:
  • Weapon Removal: use your whip to take guns from enemies. Likely very useful in casual play; I even thought about getting it in the TAS.
  • Neck whip: pull an enemy toward you and put them in a chokehold. Again, useful in casual play since you can essentially choose the direction you throw enemies.
  • Grapple flip kick: when you have an enemy in a chokehold, you can throw them straight behind you.
  • Long range attacks: does literally nothing. I assume the developers originally intended the player to be locked to neutral attacks until they bought this upgrade, but then they came to their senses and realized just how much it was necessary, so they made it so you had it by default and forgot to delete the upgrade.
  • Domination mode: I won't lie, this one seemed interesting to me at first. I thought "wow, a way to KO enemies without exit points, maybe?" Turns out it does nearly nothing - just drains your health (referred to as the "Domination Meter" in-game) and slows down time a little bit.
  • Smell fear: by using the cat sense, you can tell which enemy has the lowest damage tolerance until they go into scaredycat mode. Useless in TAS, probably useless in casual play as well since it's always faster to just kick the enemy into an exit point (unless you can't find it, which you could watch the enemy run to it).
  • Pose: pose for the bad guys. Shows a small cutscene of Catwoman touching herself for a few seconds and that's it.
  • Taunt: basically the same as pose.
  • Advanced cat sense: lets you see enemies through walls. Useless because it's not like you have the option of NOT encountering enemies.
So that's MAYBE 2 useful upgrades (in casual play). So combat, despite being a major part of the game, sucks. There's a whole scoring system with the move types which had a lot of potential, but they just couldn't make the cut since the reward (the upgrades) are not at all worth it. Just so you know: Alleycat moves are parkour, Wildcat moves are combat, Scaredycat moves involve enemies KO'ing themselves in scaredycat mode, and I genuinely don't know what Pussycat moves are. I was not able to trigger them even once - they might not even exist for all I know.
I should probably mention bosses. Pretty much all bosses in the game fight the same - one quick punch/kick, one heavy attack, and one special attack while Catwoman is stunned (if you hit an enemy enough times, they will become stunned - this also applies to enemies hitting Catwoman). They usually block just about everything you throw at them. There is a small glitch I use a few times to force them to stop blocking so I can knock them into something.
Well, what about the movement mechanics? They're overall okay at best, but they could definitely be improved by just having a better camera. Half the time Catwoman is a mile from the camera, and the other half of the time she's not even close to the center, making it extremely hard to determine where exactly you're going... especially if you're playing in the native 480p resolution (my youtube encode is 720p).
The game isn't really hard in a good way. Falling 5 stories should instantly kill you and respawn you at the top for your convenience, instead of making you climb all the way back up. It would make Midnight much more useful. Oh, I forgot to mention Midnight? Midnight is a cat at the beginning of every level, starting with level 3. If you find him, he will give you 9 lives - yes, you can die and he will revive you 9 times. Though, since dying is this game is practically impossible unless you're trying to, Midnight is useless.
In the Factory Perimeter level, while climbing on the mesh, I let myself get shot to save time. Normally you'd be expected to whip-grab the enemies and yank them from the windows, but that is extremely slow.
On the bright side, I am, however, extremely happy that run-jumping is almost twice as fast as normally running or crouch-running.
Level design is overall very good - again, it would be better if we had control of the camera to actually look at it, or a better functioning Catwoman to explore the levels with.
Other notes:
  • Catwoman has very subtle boob physics.
  • There is a vault in the main menu. The code is 1940, referencing the first appearance of Catwoman in the same year. It unlocks some comics and changes the logo to "CATWOMAN: SPECIAL EDITION".
  • In the Mansion Courtyard level, when you get into the gym, there is a panel you can break which will shut off the lights and add a neat little black and white filter to the game until some time passes or you enter the next area.
  • Entering areas too quickly will occasionally prevent cutscenes from playing, make object collision not load, or straight up drop you into an endless void.
  • I have never played this game casually or watched the movie. I do like Halle Berry's voice, though (buy a girl a saucer o' milk? :3).
  • The current world record is 1:11:25 by its_all4u_DiaperBaby, and I got a lot of the strats from his run, but also discovered a lot on my own thanks to the nature of TAS.
  • This will be my first submission to TASVideos.
  • Created, played, and recorded on Dolphin 5.0.
EDIT: I cancelled this TAS very briefly but some kind words from the staff on Discord encouraged me to bring it back. Thanks.

Samsara: You're welcome! c: Also, judging!
Samsara: File replaced with a version that truncates some blank/unnecessary input. Should have a judgement within a day or two, apologies for the delay.
Samsara: While the overall quality of the run isn't bad per se, as outlined in this post, movement can still be tightened up significantly. I would say the main point of optimization here is the general ground movement with the jumping: Shorter jumps (i.e holding R for a single frame) appear to be faster overall in general, but the big thing about them is that since you're more or less locked into your angle throughout a jump, shortening the length of each jump allows for greater control over your angles in general, meaning less parts where Catwoman is jumping away from her target only to turn towards it and start jumping toward it again. There's also some easy-to-find improvements in general pathing, the most notable being a section in which the submission crosses a gap by walljumping, whereas I was able to forego walljumping entirely and just grab the far ledge.
My philosophy for judging edge-case optimization submissions like this stems from a much older judgement of mine: The idea is that I shouldn't be able to come in with a quick test and save time, especially on an emulator I have no TAS experience with, a method of TASing that I'm not used to, and with a game that I've never played before. Given that I was able to do so with this submission (and also being well aware that my own input can be tightened up even further), I can only come to the same conclusion I did with Thexder: It's good, but not good enough for our standards of optimization. I can see an optimized submission being sub-50 in TAS timing, likely more if someone is willing to really put in the effort to master the game's awful movement, but that's unlikely given that this game is awful. Publishable to Vault still, but absolutely an awful game.
I'm rejecting this for suboptimality. It's a solid attempt, but it can still be optimized pretty heavily.


TASVideoAgent
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This topic is for the purpose of discussing #7008: Natetheman223's GC Unknown Game in 52:30.40
Dimon12321
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I didn't expect to see so many posts here. I've watched the whole TAS and now I have mixed feelings. The game seems to be restricted at times or else I see a lot of tiny possible time savers. For example, at the beginning when the game tells you how to climb up the wall, you keep moving left even after crossing the gap. Could you jump down earlier? IIRC, Catwoman can jump down towards the direction she was moving, but you jump straight down.
TASing is like making a film: only the best takes are shown in the final movie.
Natetheman223
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Posts: 49
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Dimon12321 wrote:
I didn't expect to see so many posts here. I've watched the whole TAS and now I have mixed feelings. The game seems to be restricted at times or else I see a lot of tiny possible time savers. For example, at the beginning when the game tells you how to climb up the wall, you keep moving left even after crossing the gap. Could you jump down earlier? IIRC, Catwoman can jump down towards the direction she was moving, but you jump straight down.
Yeah, this game is extremely restricted. Catwoman can jump directionally off walls, but not all of them, but she can't choose a direction when simply dropping off the wall. Not to mention that a lot of the time the game seems to force you to take the slow way for everything. It looks like there's a lot of potential, but in practice, the game seems to actively try to slow you down. Some other walls actually just flat out don't let you directional jump off of them.
I like 3D Spider-Man games.
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Joined: 6/30/2010
Posts: 1100
Location: Zurich, Switzerland
This really is a terrible game, pretty much the 2000's equivalent of an LJN-title. Everything looks slow and tedious, even in a TAS. On top of that, the main character is sexualized to a ridiculous extent and with zero self-awareness. At least there is some unintentional entertainment going on with the combat mechanic of the "exit points". This was clearly designed for the game to appear less violent, so Catwoman only knocks out her enemies instead of killing them. Too bad that so many of these "exit points" would very obviously kill a person. Overall, I just have to vote no here, this game just looks too slow to be interesting. Maybe if some skips were found, things could change.
Current project: Gex 3 any% Paused: Gex 64 any% There are no N64 emulators. Just SM64 emulators with hacky support for all the other games.
Zinfidel
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I can confirm sync for this game on Dolphin 5.0: Edit: Claiming this for publication if it gets accepted.
TASVideosGrue
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om, nom, nom
Samsara
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User movie #69519305538117343 Took a stab at this as my first TASing attempt with Dolphin. My input starts at around frame 5350, and up to where the userfile ends (1000 VI frames later) it's a little over 2 seconds faster (~70 frames at 30fps) without serious optimization. The game may control awfully but the movement in this TAS can still be significantly tightened up just with better angles and more fine-tuned input.
TASvideos Admin and acting Senior Judge 💙 Currently on indefinite hiatus, taking care of family. Very infrequently posting on Cohost
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