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(Cancelled because I found a mistake in this one. See submission #821.)
An improvement of 1 minute and 25 seconds on Teowind's published run of this short and cutesy game.
emulator: FCEU (Phil's patched one, but that's not required to watch it.)
NOTE: there is a lot of flickering in the graphics, you can fix this in FCEU by enabling "Allow more than 8 sprites per scanline" in the Video options. (This does not affect the emulation, just makes the graphics cleaner.)
  • aims for fastest time
  • uses death as a shortcut
  • takes damage to save time
I use the Japanese ROM because that's what the previous run uses. They're basically the same anyway, all the text is English except a tiny part of the title screen. (If you have the game, I suggest also watching the relaxing intro.)
The goal of this game is to beat all the levels, which are overrun by evil toys, and rescue the little girl they kidnapped. The main character is a green, blobby toy monster with a unicorn horn that can conjure up stars and shoot them. That's his only ability besides walking and jumping, but the stars he shoots also act as moving platforms, so you can use them to go faster or reach higher, if you're really skilled. Besides the evil monsters, there's a lot of water and spikes in the levels, both of which are fatal (even if invincible from taking damage).
The graphics are impressive for the NES, especially considering that this game has absolutely no lag anywhere. The game is short, but there is a lot of variety in what's there, for instance a lot of the creatures you see are unique to one small area of the game.
I use the star a heck of a lot, even more than in Sami's 100% run, since I found it can save time in almost any situation. It moves very fast compared to walking speed if you throw it right, so even if I have to move backward for a second to angle it correctly it can quickly make up for that time. Unfortunately there are a few segments of waiting that I wasn't able to avoid, despite trying really hard to do impossible things to avoid them. Using the star to get around is really tricky, it can't be used everywhere because it moves faster than you so you have to either trick out the collision detection with frame precision or bounce it off a wall in order to get on top of it, and in some places (like the boat and pink creature rides) there aren't any walls or correctly angled/moving platforms to hitch a ride over the gap. I did manage to avoid most of the waiting in the final room before the last set of bosses, although every part of that was very nearly impossible. Keep in mind that it's a lot harder to get on a star than it looks - even if you do it right, sometimes the collision detection is bad and you fall through it anyway.
I don't use weapon items (bomb and fireball) very much, since they do exactly as much damage as stars (except for one miniboss), so in most cases they don't save more time than it takes to pick them up. I jump a lot after going down slopes to maintain speed (yeah, this is another one of those games that do that). The physics are very momentum-based, which makes the controls pretty slippery for normal playing, and causes a few short delays here and there when I have to reverse momentum to jump or shoot a star in the right direction.
I die a few times:
  • at the first boss (blob), for amusement since the game ignores it here
  • at the second boss (pirate), to skip the huge score bonus, saving some time
  • in the third level (at the waterfall), to skip ahead a few screens which saves a little time
  • at the third boss (snail), for amusement since the game ignores it here
I also get hit a few of times:
  • once in the fourth level, to skip some otherwise unavoidable waiting for some traps
  • once in the sixth level, to knock me onto a star shot that I'd otherwise have to angle differently to get onto
  • I let a non-damaging (but star-disabling) bubble hit me at the last boss to manipulate it to move where I can hit it faster
There isn't really any luck to manipulate or glitches to abuse, although I guess in the very broadest sense you could say both of those apply. A lot of things are unpredictable and had to be treated as if they were random, but I don't think the RNG is used for anything besides item drops (which I didn't manipulate).
This is my first time making a time attack of an NES game, so it was a little hard getting started. I kept running into annoying bugs in FCEU (crashes/freezes, CPU hogging, and major graphics corruption), nothing too debilitating though... The frame advance of FCEU is much harder to use than in Snes9x or VBA, mainly because it has no repeat feature, so I can't use it for everything unless I want to hit the button a zillion times, and FCEU has a large and apparently random delay when unpausing or loading save states (and is unstable at speeds less than 100%). So, uh, I ended up doing a lot more stuff at 100% speed than I wanted to.
Anyway... Enjoy (while it lasts).

TASVideoAgent
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This topic is for the purpose of discussing #820: nitsuja's NES Gimmick! in 07:13.42
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Now here's something I was hoping for. Good stuff. I also wouldn't mind if you improved the 100% version, just because I like the full ending, but I won't pressure you.
put yourself in my rocketpack if that poochie is one outrageous dude
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A very well done movie. You definitely used your stars to an advantage throughout the movie. An obvious YES vote here.
Quietust
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Most definitely yes - several extremely creative uses of star boosting in there...
* Quietust, QMT Productions P.S. If you don't get this note, let me know and I'll write you another
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a great improvement, in timing and entertaining, no doubts about a yes vote^^
<small>My big signature was cleared by admin; i should read <a href="http://tasvideos.org/ForumRules.html">forum rules</a>. But... who does?</small>
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I might do a 100% version, I like that ending too (and hopefully most of it can be hexed in), but... sometime later. I'll note that in a few places where I use the star it only saves a really tiny amount of time, like 2-5 frames, even when it looks considerably faster. Better than nothing, I guess. But I was expecting to be able to get more of an improvement in the time, to tell the truth. (If only there was some way to skip more of the boat ride or get those useless pterodactyls to turn around.)
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Improvement over a previous version, fast gameplay and nice tricks performed with the star. Obvious yes.
"Kids! Bringing about Armageddon can be dangerous. Do not attempt it in your home." ( Pratchett & Gaiman: Good Omens )
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Yes vote from me. I noticed something though. Did anyone else see a resemblance in some of the stages to settings from Studio Ghibli movies? The last part of stage three, for example, bears a strong resemblance to the underground fossilized trees in Nausicaa (as do the flying insects in that particular area too). And the final stage of the full run (not this one) also really resembles Laputa. Granted, there have been many many videogames that have borrowed themes from Studio Ghibli movies, so this is nothing new.
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I mostly just see Bub vs. Bob-Ombs... Oh, and that wood block looks like the one from Super Mario Bros. 3!
put yourself in my rocketpack if that poochie is one outrageous dude