• Emulator used: BizHawk 2.9.1 (mGBA)
  • Aims for fastest time
  • Combat, and a lot of it
  • Exploration?! In MY beat-em-up?!

EVERYTHING'S GONE BACKWARDS

NOTHING'S WHAT IT SEEMS

I AWAKE FROM MY NIGHTMARES

SMASH THE MIRRORS, SMASH THE DREAMS

Oh wait, wrong game.

Introduction

Gekido Advance: Kintaro's Revenge is a non-linear side-scrolling beat 'em up developed by NAPS Team, and as the name suggests, released for the Game Boy Advance in 2002. It is a sequel to the fairly late PS1 brawler Gekido: Urban Fighters. Unlike the previous installment, Gekido Advance centers on one protagonist, instead of multiple characters as seen in Urban Fighters.
This movie beats fulgore's time on the re-release from 2018 by around 28 minutes (or 35 minutes when accounting for things that aren't possible to do in the original version: skipping cutscenes and text boxes, being able to run diagonally, etc.)

Mechanics

Special Move
Next to Tetsuo's life bar, there is a second bar, smaller and composed of six purple segments: it charges gradually and, once full, it begins to glow yellow. When this happens, by pressing A and B at the same time, Tetsuo will call lightning from the sky, which deals 6 HP of damage to nearby enemies.
After calling the lightning, you have to wait 384 frames (about 6.4 seconds in real time) before the purple bar fills completely again. As the bar refills, you can still perform the special move as normal, but it sacrifices 8 of Tetsuo's HP if you don't wait.
Power-Ups / Power-Downs
Much like the Special Meter, power-ups are also on a timer of 384 frames when Tetsuo picks them up, the only difference being that this timer naturally counts down instead of up.
Not all power-ups are inherently good, which is why I opt to call some of them "power-downs." The only ones that should be avoided if you can help it are the "D", "R" and "!".
IconEffect
DSlower Attack Animations
PAttack Power Doubled
RReserved Controls
SFaster Attack Animations
!Can't Attack
SkullInsta-Kills All Enemies (Except Giants and Dogs)
ExplosionInvisibility

Helpful RAM Addresses

AddressNameBytesDisplay Type
213CX Position2 ByteSigned
213EY Position2 ByteSigned
21A4Health1 ByteUnsigned
21A0Special Meter2 ByteUnsigned
21C4Invisibility Frames2 ByteUnsigned
0BD0Power-Up Timer2 ByteUnsigned
2314, 23CC, 2484, 253C, 25F4, 26ACEnemy HP1 ByteUnsigned

Run Comments

Chapter 1 - The Deathtoll Rises
I jump near Taeko at the beginning so that Tetsuo doesn't have to slowly walk towards him.
I won't go into great detail on every individual fight, but my general idea is to OHKO the "small fry" enemies (those with 6 HP or less) with the special attack. Because of the cooldown mechanic, I obviously can't get too greedy with it, so I often do long combos while waiting for the meter to refill.
After getting the first White Key from the old man, on my way back to the village, I go into a nearby house and OHKO a bunch of bats to grab a Green Key and open the locked gate that uses it to get the lantern which grants access to dark areas.
In the house where there's just a lever that lowers the barrier outside, you can skip a fight with two bats and Brown Soldiers simply by not going too far to the left.
Nearby pitfalls just sorta stop being a thing late into the game, but I gladly take every opportunity I have to throw enemies into said pitfalls, essentially insta-killing them.
The bosses for this chapter are two Stone Giants, which can be only hit when they're winding up for an attack. They also have a tendency to lift boulders into the air when you're too far away from them or if they get knocked down, so I make sure to keep a close distance between the two and not complete any combos I do while they still have health.
Chapter 2 - The Three Seals
Before anyone asks: No, dogs can't be killed. You have to wait for them to run across the screen three times before they just disappear. Also, Kunoichis can be a pain to optimise combat with because they like to jump around a lot.
Going to the White Temple (I'm calling it that because of the keyhole) after getting the White Key from Taro, I head inside to get the key to the Red Temple on the roof, and get in there.
The minibosses I face before getting to a chest with the second White Key are two Stone Giants again. Same strategy applies here.
The hit I take upon getting up on the roof is unavoidable. Sucks, but it is what it is. At least it shows you don't want to be too close to enemies that drop in from the sky.
After getting the Gold Key from the Green Temple, I head back into the White Temple to get the Seal from the basement, and run back to where I met Taro to start the boss fight.
To put it simply, Kintaro is an autoscroller. He shoots fireballs at you a few times, rises off-screen, tries to hit you with lightning, drops down where the lightning struck, and allows you to wail on him with one combo. Rinse and repeat for four cycles and he's dead.
Chapter 3 - The Ancient Book
Dogs appear quite often from here on out, so you'll see me doing the special attack just to avoid getting hit by them in the middle of a combo.
The Central Market gives us quite a lot to do. I first talk to the Merchant to get a Red Key from him. This key is used to open the door to a warehouse where I can find Oil.
After getting the Oil, I head all the way out through a construction site(?) to a path with a Flower at the end. After giving this to a grieving father in the market, he grants us a White Key to the library. I also give the Oil from earlier to the merchant for the Lantern, which grants me access to the boss room.
Getting the Book from the library and giving that to the old man we met in Chapter 1, he gives us the Golden Key to where we fight the bosses: two Red Creepers.
They prepare to throw their scythes like a boomerang when you face away from them, so I take advantage of that, as well as the brief time I have while the scythes come back to them to deal damage.
Chapter 4 - Searching for Koji
Compared to the first three chapters, this one is pretty linear. You just have to find a bunch of levers that open up barriers while you're heading through the sewers. Also, another unavoidable hit in the room before the first lever, hooray.
I've mostly refrained from talking about the obstacles, but every room that has them easily made this the most tedious chapter to TAS.
Koji can only be hit from the back while he's kneeling. He does spawn five crows every time he has to kneel, but aside from that, this fight pretty much ends as soon as it starts with two cycles.
Chapter 5 - The Final Battle
Kintaro is literally just the same boss he was in Chapter 2, but with a new dashing attack.

Potential Improvements

When I went back to make some small optimisations in Stage 1 (entering doors slightly faster, etc.), an Insta-Kill power-up had taken place of what was originally a Speed-Up.
While this naturally caused me to re-think what I did in the room after that point, this suggests to me that whatever item drops you get is hugely dependent on RNG, so finding a way to manipulate it would be a god-send.

Suggested Screenshot

Frame 63332, maybe?

Darkman425: Claiming for judging.
Darkman425: The gameplay to handle the enemy encounters, meter management, and platforming looks very good. There were some encounters where there's a possibly faster strat but the RNG affecting item drops could make later encounters relying on them slower due to worse drops. Nice work overall!
Accepting to Standard.
A note to encoders about a graphical issue. During the cutscene before the final boss fight, Tetsuo's mouth and chin are seen disjointed from the rest of his face by one tile for part of it. I have no clue if this is an emulation bug or simply a graphical error in the game itself. I couldn't find any footage of real GBA or Game Boy Player hardware that shows this cutscene and the RTA runs use a modern port that simply allows for skipping the cutscene altogether. It's relatively minor but it's worth mentioning here.

despoa: Processing...


TASVideoAgent
They/Them
Moderator
Joined: 8/3/2004
Posts: 15177
Location: 127.0.0.1
Post subject: Movie published
TASVideoAgent
They/Them
Moderator
Joined: 8/3/2004
Posts: 15177
Location: 127.0.0.1
This movie has been published. The posts before this message apply to the submission, and posts after this message apply to the published movie. ---- [5990] GBA Gekido Advance: Kintaro's Revenge by JHolleworth in 43:22.60