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The Battle of Olympus (Any %) (Single Segment)

Verifier Responses

A/V seems good.

I have to admit I'm a bit torn about this run. The controls can be a bear and olive farming is a giant pile of fuck, which makes this game pretty hard to play, let alone run, especially with how much stuff gets skipped in an any%.

There's a lot of good planning and execution showing here, even if there are some really bizarre screwups that in a run with less luck involved would edge it towards a "maybe".

Still, there's a lot of difficult tricks on display and I will never cease to be amused at fighting the final boss in the dark. I'll give this an accept.

I was in the stream for this run, so I'll say up front I'm inclined to think it was legitimate.

A/V seem to be your standard NES quality.

Time: I have character control gained at 00:20, and lost at 31:29, for a time of 31:09.

Starts off with the first olive grind.  Missed a couple of hits early, had a couple of false starts, but got the setup going, and got olives.

Talks to Zeus, which is mandatory to get the other items from the gods.  No issues here.

Run to Hermes's temple is arguably too cautious. Takes three hits, doesn't go for the jumping hit on the snake.  Easily the weak point of the run.

Now, more olive grind!  Not an immediate perfect setup, but after a few passes the machine is in operation.

Talks to Hermes at Zeus's temple, gets sandals, no issues on that path.

Up to this point the run has been walking, olive grinding, and the walk to Hermes's temple.  The walking is just a time sink, the olive grind is mostly luck once you know how to do it, and the Argolis part was relatively weak.  But in terms of raw speed it's a very good run so far, because the olive luck dominates.

Now to Peloponnesus.  Better bat manipulations here than in Argolis.  Would have liked to seen those there.  Got the damage boost.  No issues to Barba Hydra.  Misses one pass on Hydra.  So not perfect but very good.  Way out from the second sword has one issue with a bat.  Gets the harp.  Again another bat.  Gets a health upgrade you technically don't need, but is probably needed for Moon Pearl skip.  Clean boss fight.

And now on to Laconia.  This is where the game starts trying to kill you.  Takes one minor hit, but he *had* to stop in order to get the Ocarina.  Gets the flask which is basically mandatory for the Moon Pearl skip.  Good first boss fight, small glitch on the second boss fight but lucky spawns made it quick.  Small issue on the way back to Arcadia, but gets out.

And now back to Arcadia for another grind.  Gets the setup, loses setup, gets it back, gets olives.

Back to Argolis for the Eye.  Good bat manipulations here but it's a short trip to the Love Fragment.

Harps to the Key.  Gets hit repeatedly.  But then again, you don't really get a good way to attack those guys.  I'm not *sure* stopping to kill all the satyrs would be faster though.

Doesn't get the stun lock on the boss fight to Phthia.

Ah, Phthia.  Bird drops an item, lucky.  Monkeys jump, lucky.  Gets to the ambrosia with one health.  More monkey jumps as needed... and one that wasn't on the stairs. but the stairs held him in place so he moved on.    Bird issues on the way to the love fragment.  Gets past the centaur in a few tries, which isn't easy with a huge, fast moving enemy.  Gets the Love Fragment.    Good return trip on the centaur though, first try.  Tsk, switches to flask then harp.

Harps back to Laconia for run to Crete.  Crete run is straightforward.

Now Crete.  After Phthia, Crete should be easy for a speed runner, because it's another fixed maze.  Minotaur room is awkward though, but the Minotaur fight himself is basically perfect.  So the third Love fragment is acquired.  Crete escape is a close shave, taking a bad hit.

And then on to the endgame.  Cerberus fight is pretty much perfect.  Bat manpulations mostly sound.  Big snake barely does a thing.    Annoying green guys go down fast, but again the bats are an obstacle.  Takes two health refills, clearly a 'we have good olive luck so let's go for deathless'  strategy.

Lamia II is handled perfectly.  Snakes slow him down, and do damage anyway.

And then the final battle.  We can't see the boss thanks to the Moon Pearl skip, but we can hear he gets in hit after hit after hit.  he has to use the Flask because he also skips the Bracelet.  Good use of crouching beam shots. Very consistent.  And game over.  A pause for celebration of a deathless run on the final cutscene.

And then the runner makes a fatal error: presses start after the credits run, triggering a second playthrough.  I'm going to have to REJECT on that grounds.

But no.  I agree with the previous verifier that there are a number of small errors throughout the run. If speed running this game were purely about execution, the run to Hermes's temple in particular should have been a reset.  The runner is showing enough skill that this kind of time, the luck dominates.

I should point out though that there are at least two points (in Phthia) where the runner could have used death warps, and possibly more if the entire route were altered to minimize the holding of olives, but the runner chose to make this a run without deaths.  So given that constraint, the routing is good, and while the execution isn't *perfect*, it's good enough that the run came down to luck with olives and monster AI.

This is a fast, deathless run of a game that defied speed and deathlessness.  Luck mattered, but this is no Clue or something.  I think the bad Argolis is more than made up for by the rest of the run. ACCEPT

A/V: Looks good to me.

I haven't timed the game frame by frame, but the second verifier's timing points are correct. Timing starts when the character (or BUG) appears on screen, and timing ends when the main character rescues his gf and there are hearts cricling around the statue. The time is either 31:09 or 31:08.

My knowledge of this game is a bit rusty, but I do remember two things.

1. The olive grinding makes running this game a pain in the ass. AFAIK, the olive drops are completely random.

2. The final area is brutal.

I won't lie, this run has a couple of nasty flaws here and there, but for a game this this luck-based and unforgiving, I can overlook them. I will say the olive grinding was really good. The runner grouped big clumps of slugs together and quickly collected the olives. Also, how the runner handled the final area was incredibly impressive. It's very easy to get comboed to death by the snakes and flying gargoyles.

I think this is a good first run of the game, and I accept it because the planning and execution is mostly good, even if there is some room for improvement.

Start grind at 7 olives.  20 passes for 38 olives.  Almost 2 per pass. 

Start second grind at 48 olives.  25 passes for 39 olives.  1.56 per pass.  Last three I think were zeroes.  Gets last olive elsewhere.  Maybe a conscious decision to either stay for final olive or leave at set number under 90 just to avoid the look of losing a bunch of time to olive luck. 

Lots of hits by bats in the early goings of this run, and none of them boost you forward.  Was this the fastest way to navigate through those sections?

Spider web mistake is a bit cringe worthy.

Backtracking to pick up the stray olives is an interesting choice.  I wonder what the absolute ideal choice would be.

Final grind starts at 34 olives.  27 passes for 36 olives.  1.26 per pass.  Eek.  Not sure what the average OPP (!) is, but a drop from just under 2 to 1 and a quarter is concerning.  Each pass is about 4.5 seconds, so there's half a minute easily there.  Depending on the average rate, which I'm unsure of, I would think a run would have to have its average be above the bell curve mean.  Total 72 passes for 113 olives.  1.57 per pass. 

Just one observation on the grind.  I noticed that walking right after the screen stopped scrolling while setting up the screens seemed wasteful.  The slow walking I believe is to keep the slimes on screen since they respawn on the vertical plane that they die on.  Once the screen stops moving, they're either there or they aren't, so no need to keep walking, right?  Also, not sure if this would save time, but walking faster and slowing down at the exact spawn points might save time overall.  Riskier, of course, since you can overshoot and scroll 'em off screen and you'd have to respawn them and waste time, but it might be worth it to look into more.

Attica is less than ideal.

I'm glad for the info on the room reset.

I wouldn't have switched to flask until it was absolutely necessary.  I think 3 or 4 unnecessary menu trips were made. 

Final area certainly the highlight of the run.  I like the routing of it.  I believe the right choices were made in the interests of speed and safety.

Overall I'm pleased with the routing of the game.  Strategies for Crete and Phthia are well planned out and executed well.  Bosses are executed very well.

The weaknesses of the run are the mundane, boring parts of a speedrun.  I think the grinding randomness skews bad, and dealing with random, low level enemies is pretty loose. I think the execution for both those segments of the run can be tightened up considerably. 

The last 5:45 of the run makes this a fairly easy accept, upgrading from an accept with reservations.  There is no current run of this game on SDA, so that helps the cause. 

Decision: Accept

Congratulations to Brian 'Boxfat' Ringeisen!
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First of all, thank you all very much for your in-depth responses.

I will agree that the main flaw of this run is that I was desperately trying to cling on to a run where I had a solid first farm, and it wound up being deathless.

Addressing some points as they pop in my head:

Bats in this game are -somewhat- possible to manipulate. Most of the time, they come down to a 50/50 shot. Out of the three hits I took, I had control over two. The first one was just bad luck, the second one I should have jumped sooner under. The third was to a snake that should have come with the bat above it, but I didn't approach it aggressively enough.

The first olive farm was above average luck, with the second being about average, maybe a tiny bit below average. The run I was comparing against got a buttload of olives really quickly. I settled for 89 olives when I realized my luck was pretty bad. I'd be interested to actually gather some statistics to see what I should optimally look for. Perhaps messing around with an emulator and looking at hex values would also assist me, but I'm pretty sure it's just on a global counter that's constantly ticking up faster than I'd be able to manipulate.

Noted about walking all the way right, but I believe it spawns the last one more consistently. I'll have to test with that method a bit more.

The real purpose of the slow walking is to keep them lined up with each other, not so much on screen. Having them on screen of course does make it easier to kill them at the same vertical plane, though.

The spider web was... rather unfortunate, I agree.

I certainly learned a lesson about flask usage in this run. I was getting nervous around Phthia since that's where a lot of runs die (including the one where I was well set-up for under 30 minutes if I'd gotten everything right...) and so my menu decisions were a bit questionable.

I think my biggest execution flaws came from not having obtained my deathless previously. I will certainly look to improve this time now that I've finally had a reasonable run, and I think since I'll be less attached to future runs, I can more easily improve on this time. Certainly need a break, though. Perhaps in the summer or next year I'll attack this again. Or whenever Crippe beats this time. (Wink wink, nudge nudge)

Also, mystery verifier #2: this game is clearly superior and merely took a year longer to develop. Wink

Thanks again for the detailed feedback, I actually did get quite a bit out of it and will eventually use it to either improve my run or help others improve their runs. I hope people enjoy this in the meantime.