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Battletoads & Double Dragon
Battletoads & Double Dragon was a crossover game by Rare, released in 1993 for various platforms. The game is very much like a Battletoads beat 'em up, except it includes Billy and Jimmy Lee. The heroes journey through space, pound on palette swaps, struggle with cheap repeated knockdowns and one-hit kills, and even defeat the Dark Queen while they're at it.

 

Lee run (Death Abuse): 0:21:27 by Patrick 'PJ' DiCesare

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First off, I want to give a big thanks to everybody at Speeddemosarchive for everything they do for the speed running world. It means a lot to us!

Speed run history:
23:23 by Dominic 'DAMURDOC' Legault on 2007-07-19, using a Lee brother
22:05 by Blake 'Evil_Guru' Adams on 2007-09-01, using a Lee brother

This game doesn't get a lot of love, and for good reason. This is by far my least favorite of the Battletoads series (even including the Game Boy versions), yet somehow this one has 4 different ports. That's stupid. At least the NES version has some neat speed tricks that can be abused. This one just has anti-speed tricks that are just irritating and not fun. They are pretty obvious in this run.

I had recorded a speed run of this game back in May 2009 that clocked in at around 21:50 or so, but the quality was way too poor to upload here. The Lee brothers are way faster than the 'Toads just because of the boss kills. Otherwise they are actually slower, IMO. Regardless, that difference alone is why the 'Toads should never be used for a speed run.

I guess I'll make a few general notes about this game before I continue. The way that attacks are targetted in this game is really stupid. If there is an enemy on the ground that is "lower priority" than an enemy standing next to him, you won't be able to use the finishing attack on the ground enemy. By the same token, if you are in the middle of a finishing attack on a ground enemy, and a higher priority enemy walks by, the finishing attack will be redirected to the standing enemy. I use this a few times in levels 2 and 5, and could use it in a few more places but it's really picky. If you see me miss a knee press on a ground enemy, this is because something of higher priority is nearby and prevents me from succeeding. And yes, this can even be a stick, so you need to constantly be aware of where you set up the knee presses. Fun, right? :/

Anyways, this run has a lot of room for improvement. I'll be the first to say it. However, I am not going to be redoing this run unless someone beats the time. It is just not fun, and the only real improvements possible are all luck-based. Sub-21 is 100% possible, no question. It just needs good luck and good execution, neither of which I have apparently.

Individual level comments:

Level 1:

Not too much to say here. It's pretty straightforward. The second orange gunbot was a jerk and didn't want to appear onscreen. Nothing I'd reset over. We get to see our first example of sketchy priority targetting shortly after him though. I kick two robots hanging on the close ledge, and then stomp on one near the back. It is faster to stomp on the very next robot too, but if that air-lifted robot gets anywhere even remotely close to you, the game won't let you stomp him. You'll just be standing there punching away at nothing. Therefore, I just suck it up and kick him off from the ledge. I lose a few seconds, but I also save myself a lot of frustration.

The rest of the level is fine. I just have a quick note about Abobo. On the NES version it is possible to hit him with a finishing blow as your second attack by quickly chasing a successfully dash attack. Unfortunately, that doesn't work single player in this version. Luckily, this strategy is still really fast. The placement and timing on those jump kicks are somewhat picky, but not really.

Level 2:

The second screen can be done faster. Rather, it COULD be done faster if there wasn't this ridiculous priority issue. That stick lying on the ground has a higher priority than the punk brawler on the right. I can't hit him from the right and finish him on the left like I do for the first screen, because the stick will prevent me from landing a finishing attack. So stupid. The same issue is what stops me on the third screen. In that screen, I messed up, though. If I'm fast enough, I can begin a knee press on the brawler before the left enemy ambles over to me, so the knee will actually kill the new guy instead. It is only 1-2 seconds faster, but it looks much cooler. Sorry for missing it. I did succeed in getting the one-round kill on captain dynamite, though.

Second floor is fine. During the fast spawning area, that stick again has more priority than my jump kick, so if I try to jump kick the large yellow walker at the end, I pick up the stick again. It is one second faster to kill him with a jump kick -> knee press than it is to kill with a dash attack -> knee press, so it's no big deal. It mostly just frustrates me because of how garbage the mechanics are in this game. An ideal fight against captain dynamite rounds off this floor.

2-3 is really simple. There is a minor blip in the video during the second wall section, and I apologize for that. Anyways, I promised to quit this game forever if I ever died on this section; it is that easy. I would much prefer a challenging "Turbo Tunnels" section like the original Battletoads or Battlemaniacs, but instead I got this one. Only one thing to note here: the speed at which you kill the bikers determines how many capsules appear in the following section. It is still best to kill them as fast as possible and then deal with the extra capsules than it is to sandbag and have fewer capsules. It is also faster to kill the front bikers with kicks than with the charge attack; the charge attack makes the bike bounce all over the screen which takes a pretty long time.

Blag gets crushed. Oh, remember what I said about finicky targetting? Here. Wtf. This never happened to me before. Somehow I couldn't use the knee press. Good job, game. You really know how to enhance the gaming experience.

Level 3:

This level is somehow the easiest one now. Well, normally. I can't even explain what happened during the end of the first checkpoint. I normally jump to the right, press down to get off the bar, and then run to the right. And this happened. I didn't press anything differently, it just wanted to kill me I guess. A few seconds down the drain. It just looks so bad.

3-2 is interesting. And by interesting I mean frustrating. Those whip chicks at the beginning have some really, really messed up priority. I have concluded that trying to knee press them is just stupid. These dash kicks seem to work really well, though. Oh, one more note here. If you're dashing and you release the dpad before you press attack, you'll do a standing punch. Even if you're dashing this works as long as you aren't still holding forwsrd. I guess the game forgot about this mechanic and wanted to just see me dash kick off the ledge.

Those suicides by the grating are intentional. It is much faster to do this than it is to climb the grating. In this version, at least. There's some neat tricks in the NES version that aren't present here (because that'd make this port actually fun).

Don't mind the graphic glitch at the end of 3-2. It's fine, I promise.

In the conveyer part, the trash compactor thing after the three electric barriers is in the wrong spot. It has never, not even once, hit me there. Call it karma, I guess. The only other thing I want to mention on this level is the horizontal rope part in 3-3. That second bird is sometimes literally impossible to hit. No joke. The placement required to hit him is different every single time, and sometimes it is not possible to hit him at all. See where I hit him in this video? That should be enough to support this claim.

My Roper fight is pretty bad. The 'correct' way to do it is to dash kick him when he is like....35-40% of the way across the screen, and then hit him with 3-4 crouching kicks before retreating and repeating. I messed it up pretty bad. Mostly my fault here.

Level 4:

Disaster. My button mashing is pretty poor, too. This level is like 20 seconds slower than my previous best. Blue UFO at least partly behaved. He can be a real mess to deal with.

It is faster to just mash the attack button against the Rat Ship than to fire missiles, except for the machine gun phase. It is also faster to take time to dodge his attacks then to just tank the hits, die, and abuse invincibility against him. Since I'm bad though, I mess this up.

Level 5:

This is the only fun part in the game, which makes it, conveniently, my favorite level. This is a pretty good run, which is few very notable mistakes. After the first battle with General Slaughter, it is possible to abuse the flames to save a few seconds. This requires dashing the instant you are finished climbing the ladders though, and at the very last stretch I ducked too soon so I couldn't do it. As I said, I only lost a few seconds here and was smart enough to realize I missed it instead of trying to land it anyways, costing a life and 10 or so seconds. I'm normally stubborn and attempt it regardless, so I'm very proud that I learned from my mistakes for once.

I landed the death shortcut the second time, which is good. However, I followed that up by climbing an invisible ladder at the beginning of 5-2. Don't misunderstand, there is a ladder beneath me, but I was climbing UP. These are hidden all over the level and I don't know how to trigger them, but trust me they are there. If you find one, you can just keep climbing it up and offscreen and really bizarre things happen. I just dismount and proceed in this case, but in other cases it's definitely possible to trigger some strange stuff. None of it is beneficial at all, but it's sometimes funny.

That final dynamite guy was rage. My spacing was definitely off for the first throw, no questions asked. I am POSITIVE that I was in the right spot for every other throw though, yet it took 4-5 for it to actually go in the window. This is maybe the biggest mistake of the run, which is frustrating for something so simple.

For Robo Manus, I had my pick of 3-4 different glitches to use against him to speed it up (including the invisi-ladder). In the end, this is the fastest one. You can actually kill him before activating the battle, which cuts the "surprised" animation and battle intro. Plus, I think I can hit him more frequently with this setup and avoid most of the lag from his explosion by scrolling it off-screen. And hey, it looks cooler. ^_^ There is one even faster way to kill him but I haven't figured it out. If you space the beginning right somehow, you can trap him against the left wall. You can then just do crouching kicks to pummel him instead of spacing dash kicks. He keeps getting hit farther and farther off-screen too, so at the end when he dies he's not even visible.

Level 6:

I'm pretty mad at that second guy. Somehow my knee press missed him. I KNOW I have killed him off-screen before, but this time it didn't want to work. Protip: if you actually succeed in using the knee press, something WILL die. It usually won't be the right target, but something will definitely die. Not here, I guess. I also have to be careful of where I kill the tall walkers because the sticks still have supreme priority, and I have to use a lot of knee presses on this level. I can abuse some of the priority stuff in the second last battle room (the three brawlers), but it is honestly not worth it. It takes about the same time but is riskier, so there is no reason for me to do it.

Shadow Boss is really easy. I stand at the left there and tank a hit to cancel the boss intro sequence. It also sets him up nicely for the battle. I get hit by the first spike ball because I somehow didn't want to grab that lamp. It strangely didn't cost much time. The rest of the battle went fine.

Level 7:

The triple robot room can be done a few seconds faster (if I had landed the knee press, for example), but it's really no big deal. This level is the main reason my run is as fast as it is. My luck on Dark Queen was supreme. I have never hit her 12 times in the first appearance before. I made a mistake and tried to anticipate her movements so I could dash kick over her, but she juked me and I got lured into a combo video. This battle is still the best I've ever had and the best I ever will have. If anybody ever attempts to beat this run, I promise you that Dark Queen will end a lot of those attempts, because she has for me.

Anyways, that's the run. I hope you somehow enjoyed it.

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