TODO: Starman is no longer its own role, recommend rewriting into a general stars guidelines once we figure that out.
Guidelines for starmen
It pays to advertise!
- Stars class description
- Current Star publications (by rating)
- Obsoleted Star movies (by rating)
- Annual award winner movies
- Notable impovements
- Discussion thread
This page summarizes and details ideals the starmen should adhere to when starring movies.
Table of contents
Goal of stars
The goal of starring certain movies is to create a list of movies which advertise the essence of TASing better than their counterparts. These movies should awe newcomers by their constant high levels of entertainment, their attention to detail, and their surpassment of human limitations.
Qualities of starred movies
In order to successfully catch all the following qualities, it can be beneficial to watch movies in emulators directly. An encode may drop frames, or have segments missing. It is ideal to watch the movie both at a normal rate and at a slow speed in order to catch some of the finer details.
- Starred movies should above all else have very high entertainment value that can be seen from these factors:
- High entertainment ratings from many people, with little to no negative entertainment ratings.
- Solid movement style throughout the run, that can be called god-like from a viewer's perspective.
- Good artistic choices, doing many things at once, without ruining the pace.
- Good game choice, featuring intense action, fast pace, reasonable quality for the platform.
- Amount of glitches involved, and whether they merely break the game, or change the game into something never before seen.
- A movie which earns a star should have overly visible attention to technical detail. Such as extremely precise health, item, and power-up management. Things which can help get these things noticed are:
- Finishing many levels with just one unit of health or power-up left.
- Throwing away unneeded items at the end of a level to not have bonuses calculated for it.
- Manipulating enemies to get rare but needed item drops in quick succession.
- Those watching these movies for the first time should think that the movie is too impossible to be real. This can be accomplished with the following:
- The character in the game is constantly very narrowly avoiding certain death.
- Such as by abusing collision detection and touching enemies without taking damage.
- Walking in between two enemies with no room for error.
- If the player is flying figure eights around the enemies, all the better.
- Things which are considered luck always have the most favorable outcome occur every single time.
- Techniques which are extremely difficult to pull off, and easy to screw up, are performed perfectly again and again.
- Such as bouncing off of dozens of enemies in a row without fail.
- Juggling many items without dropping any.
- Exploiting glitches which make a viewer double-take.
- Such as walking through solid walls.
- Skipping otherwise unskippable areas.
- Killing hard bosses in a very short time.
- The timing is impossibly precise.
- Such as shooting at enemies before they appear and killing them the exact moment they do.
- Jumping for an appearing/disappearing block which doesn't appear until the moment the player reaches it.
- The character in the game is constantly very narrowly avoiding certain death.
- Starred movies should be highly innovative and do things most players would not expect, nor even considered.
Amount of starred movies
Each platform should ideally have 5% of its movies starred. For a platform with only a few published runs, it might be unlikely to have any starred movies, but if it has a couple of published runs, at least one should be considered. If most runs on the platform are mediocre, do not just add stars to a bunch of runs just to reach a 5% quota.
Diversity of starred movies
Games from major franchises are generally better made than other games, and are also more popular. Because of this, runs which lend themselves best for getting a star are usually from a popular franchise. While it is expected that starred movies will generally consist of many Mario, Mega Man, Sonic, Castlevania, Metroid, and Zelda runs, other games deserve a chance too.
Avoid giving more than one or two games of the same franchise a star on a single platform. If a certain franchise is already well represented, and there's another game which has many of the same qualities of a franchise run, strongly consider the other game instead.
The starred movies should consist of many different genres, not just platform games. Ensure that there's some puzzles and RPGs on the list as well.
No single game deserves to have two different runs starred. Likewise, if two runs for two different games are very similar, star only one of them, and find something else to star. To determine which of two similar runs better deserves a star, choose the one which appears more impossible than the other, and best captivates the audience.
There should generally be a change to the starred list approximately every 50 movie publications. These changes should either be new stars added for new material from the recently published runs, or replacement of a star from an old run with something more fitting, or perhaps fresher.
A run which frame optimizes a previous starred run, and keeps the components that made the previous run great inherits its star during publication. If a significant amount of play has changed, then it needs to be reconsidered. A notable improvement definitely requires reconsideration.
Generally a brand new run should not be considered for a star till after it has been published and receives high ratings and terrific feedback. However, if the run received a lot of attention prior to publication, which is overwhelmingly positive, it can be considered for a star immediately.
Authors who know what the audience wants, and are skilled at making TASs, may very well have many starred runs. Once an author manages to make a few such runs, it is likely that he or she will have many. Who the author of a movie is should not be taken into account when giving a star to a movie.
Starmen should be members who are well respected by most of the community, who act solely for the benefit of the site, aiming to advertise it and the essence of TAS'ing.
A starman should have seen at least 10% of the movies on the site, and watch at least 20% of all newly published runs. A starman should frequently participate in discussions regarding submissions, offer their views, and vote on and rate movies. He or she should also be familiar with all the different techniques used in TAS'ing, having had seen the techniques develop over time, or used across a large array of movies, or having first hand experience of the techniques involved via creating entertaining runs.
A starman should be someone who can put themselves in a newcomer's shoes and realize which movies would best speak to that audience. In this sense, an expert player may be less attuned to this particular audience.
A starman should keep an eye on the star nomination thread, as well as new publications in general, in order to periodically update the starred movie list.
A starman should be able to converse in a civil manner with those nominating movies, or requesting changes. A starman has to be reasonable in his or her decisions to add or change a star, and be able to articulate well his or her reasoning behind a decision.
When considering a new run to star, a starman should have watched the movie in question. If it obsoletes any movies, he or she should watch those too. Like judges, a starman should pay attention to the appropriate discussion threads to better understand how the audience in general feels about a certain movie. If moving a star, all these rules apply to both the movie losing the star, as well as the movie gaining it.
There is nothing wrong with a starman having many of their own movies upon the starred list. If a starman really understands what the community wants, and is a skilled player who TASes many popular games, it is expected that he or she will have a few starred runs. However a starman shouldn't rush to star their own movies. A starman should only star thier own movie after some strong third party nominations, or after discussing their movie with other starmen or site administrators.