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Final Fantasy IV
Released in October 1991, Final Fantasy II is an easier version of Japan's Final Fantasy IV. Join the feared Dark Knight of Baron, Cecil, as he sets out to bring a 'package' to the nearby town of Mist. Things don't quite go as planned and Cecil and his newfound allies must embark on a journey that takes them to foreign lands, the underworld, and even to the moon!

 

Run: 3:05:xx by Robin 'Deign' Reigstad, done in 32 segments

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After starting my TAS for this game, I discovered a glitch that would improve Enhasa's run by about 10min or so. It is the glitch that is displayed in segments 27 and 28. Nitrodon, a fellow TASer, discovered another glitch that is displayed in segments 29 and 32. With these 2 glitches, I started my run for this game, my goal was 3:30. I soon found out that after Kainazzo I was already about 7 minutes ahead of Enhasa's run. My new estimate was about 3:20 and really stretching for 3:15. Soon after I completely destroyed Enhasa's time during the Cal/Brena and Golbez segment, I thought 3:10 was the time to beat. Eventually though, I got it down to exactly 3:05. I'm quite satisfied with this time and suspect that 3:03 and MAYBE 3:02 would be possible, but not without a LOT of effort.

While making this run my cartridge decided to dump all data except for the bottom save. This left me with 2 segments that I wasn't entirely happy with. You can see this at the begining of segments 13, where the top save is mysteriously empty. It also happened when I was still doing segment 15. This was very upsetting because that is by far the worst segment of the entire run. There was a few spots (mostly in the last couple segments) where I messed up with the walking, but I was very very borderline 2:54 & 2:55 before I got to Zeromus, so these tiny mistakes wouldn't have made a lick of difference. This is why the Rosa leveling although about 30 seconds slow, would not have improved my end game time had I perfected it like the 2nd leveling segment.

Concerning the Cal/Brena Golbez segment, I would like to reiterate this quote from Enhasa "People have a hard time believing this, but it really is impossible to get Kain into the air versus Golbez at low levels." Indeed it is near impossible but there's an 8 frame window (note that this is only .13 seconds) for when you gain control of the cursor to select jump and select Golbez. Timing for this was tested on an emulator while doing a test run for the TAS.

Most of the improvements that are not related to the glitches are a result of better boss strategies, reducing the number of random encounters, not saving as much, not visiting the item shop in Baron, not entering the menu except when it's already being opened to save (i.e. changing characters around and equipping items just before saving), this includes never equiping a weapon out of combat except for Rydia and Rosa because I was already equipping other items that i couldn't equip in battle, Kain is the other exception because I wanted him ready to go ASAP against Rubicant, getting the Change Rod and Tiara which nearly doubled Rydia's dmg, and not getting the Crystal sword.

There's another trick that's abusable to reduce the in-game time. This trick is pausing during attack animations. This, however, I feel shouldn't be used at all. This compromises the in-game timer and therefore makes it unreliable. For this reason I did not use this trick for the run in order to preserve the integrity of this timer.

I did not want to reveal the information about the glitches or the strategies here so that people could watch the run and find out then and hopefully be a little bit suprised.

Run (Single Segment): 3:35:xx by Andrew 'RaneofSoTN' Melnyk

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Final Fantasy 4, or two as the title screen likes to screw with you and say, is an rpg that likes to play tricks on you. From the mysterious nothing that sells for nearly infinite moneys to the mysterious wonders of "warp".

An great extension of thanks goes out to Deign, the runner of the Segmented run. Without his initial TAS and Seg effort, this probably would not have been possible. Also I would like to thank Romscout, UltraJMan (for his pro Water Hag protection), Mikwuyma, Puwexil, and any of my chat mods in ustream. This attempt was made live, and as such there was a crowd unfortunately I suck at recalling who was there but thank you to all of them. Also thanks to the SDA mods, flip, nate, vorpaledge, breakdown and dex. Also to BMN for his great work with the streaming stuff.

This run was put together originally to be apart of AGDQ, where the run was quite a hit, and provided my first actual full SS success. While I saved during that run it was the grounds that made me feel that SS ff4 was definitely going to happen, and I vowed this run would happen and here it is...

Okay, now for the actual run notes...

This run starts off at a quicker pace then my older 3:58:09. My notes will reference to that run, but its only for a timing standard, also included with these notes should be an image [insert link here] from the live attempt showing the difference in times to each split. The splits used in that will be used to provide the separations in my comments. The names listed should be the same as the image.

Mist D:
This is the opening sequence of the game. There isn't much to say. It took me a while to figure out how to get that chocobo 100% in the same fashion... so its about that I'll ramble on for a second. That lovely pasture has a hidden carrot that used to be the bane of my existance cause it'd block me from the chocobo.. but anyway. I pick up the cure1 in the dungeon to be used during Ant Lion. its kinda a fixed encounter that rydia will need to be healed at that time.

As for the Mist D, this is the optimal way to fight dragon. Its exactly the same way Deign does it. Fight with both, then jump with kain for the rest of the fight. This allows 6 hits on Mist D before he mists, then death before the second mist form. Very key.

Octomamm:
Okay, now to some meat and potatoes. Rydia gets stranded w/ me, and Cecil fights his urges to do the loli. Anyway, i rape some guards by mashing A... then I totally go see this chick named Rosa. She like followed me through the desert... I pick up the Ether here from the pot to be used in the Ant lion fight. This is normally how I handle that, but this run sets a precedent in the weird. This ends up not being used in that battle...

Anyway Octomamm was mostly co-operative. But he is a tentacle moster.... what more needs to be said.

Ant Lion:
Okay I grab this cure1 in this dungeon as its not far out of the way, and makes fabul about 3000% more likely to be completed in an SS. The battles can be cruel and are luck based, more on this later.

Welcome to the most fucking clutch thing i've ever seen... It was last hit for cecil to win the fight before he dies. I normally handle this fight with Chocobo spam as its just as fast as taking the counter hits, and does more damage. Somehow i got the perfect mix to make this work...

Mom bomb:
Ok, so I got out of this cave with little to no HP, and I run back to my sweetie! Only to find an annoying NPC outside of her house. Who blocks me not once, not twice, not trice, hell no not even 4 times! Sorry 5 is too good. 6 TIMES! from entering the house. if you ask why i did not hold UP to make him go faster, its slower than watching him at this point, cause i'd occupy the tile he was in and prevent his next movement, so I had to be patient. By far the most testing thing of this run...

Next, we run over to Mom bomb, where I clutch it out again though mad use of cure1 from Rosa and some damage. Yang kicks in this fight cause I found it makes the fight easier as grey bombs explode sooner and generally for less damage (overall). Cecil being down at the end of this fight always lets me know I'm going to have fun in Fabul! This is turning point for the run, I was interested in how it would go from this point.

Fabul:
So I ended up heading to this castle, and its full of monks who totally SUCK AND CAN'T DEFEND ANYTHING. So I offered my services. I use edward to try to sleep an enemy each battle he is alive in. It reduces damage taken to levels of making it possible without horrible manipulation. Stuff happens, I kill bunches of enemys, Edward proves he is fail... and then Kain kills me... Nothing more to be said about this.

Milon Z:
Ok OK OK OK... Ok.. ok. There we go. The fight is over the king gives me this brand new sword and then... I go outside and perform the duplication glitch. I had this nice idea of doing the glitch inside the Kain fight of Fabul... but on this day it was not cooperating. 3 runs were killed before this where my equipment was getting reset. It probably has to do with the PERISHED at the end of the Kain fight. So I farm a random encounter quickly to do the glitch then run. I get on the boat and stuff happens, some girl jumps overboard this muscle dood tries to imitate Frezy, and I get stuck with the crappy bard until its over.

I'm in the new town, and I meet up with some twins. Then I proceed to glitch 256 shadow swords into a slot to be sold in a second, and get stuff.
- 1 flame rod, 10 gaea headgear, 10 gaea armor, 10 silver rings, 1 paladin shield 1 paladin gauntlet, 99 cure2 life1 cabin heal ether1.
The list above is just whatever I use during the run.
The defensive gear makes everything about the bosses much much easier. Milon/Z doesn't one shot the mages, and then it also makes it not as necessary to heal. Segmented the armor would go, SS makes it just soo much easier.

Anyway about actual Milon. Stuff happens, I get a good comet then a flare. So Milon is quick. Milon Z gets the same treatment. He gets quick killed, as porom clutches out life at 1hp, and blink proves how awesomely badass it is at shutting down Milon Z. I then go on to become a paladin and NOT ATTACK THE DARK NIGHT (thanks J)

Baigan:
So I get back to town, stuff happens yatta yatta. The guards were a bit slow thanks to fire2 not doing enough damage for fire1 to kill the guard. Sad Face. Yang is a fixed battle, you just have to hit him once after the 2nd kick. So I just wait and attack. Nothing to it.
I now buy claws for yang (thunder+ice), and 10 sets of karate gear and headbands. This is to make my party look cool, as this matters over all (also the str bonus' give extra multipliers for most of the game).

Baigan was a huge pain. But he fell. This glitched explosion animation is something new to me. It happened after a wonderful incident which I will link. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VXUwD16EQ10 < This is a Youtube video of what happened to me in a run. The waterfall glitched out and killed a run. After that it erased my SRAM (why you didn't see a file select at the start of this run). Ever since that point, Baigan has had this wonderful explosion animation and is the ONLY weird after effect from that waterfall that I have found.
BTW Baigan is a JERK!

Kainazzo:
Ok I list the two bosses in Baron as separate splits just to see how fast each one went. The idea is to get a feel for how I'm doing bosswise. I had to double cast Bolt3 but it works and was still faster than my 3:58:09.
Cid then comes out and some kids commit suicide watever moving on...

Dark Elf:
Ok so some stuff happens here. I grab the tiara and change rod. Then I go to meet Edward pick up some heavy harp which slows me down in this upcoming cave. Then I fight this weird looking elf. I totally forgot to switch Cid's spot w/ Tellah but it ends up not mattering cause Berserking Cecil here is pro tier. Berserk cecil can win this fight no problem as long as he doesn't get weak'd. So Cecil gets dark elf to form 2, tellah weaks him and stuff moves on. I get a crystal and then turn around in place to exit the dungeon. I didn't mention my pretty good luck in getting a quick (mostly) black chocobo.

Magus Sisters:
Okay so I heard about these totally hawt sisters in this tower so I climb it. Also it apparently holds Cecil's GF, but whatever. Stuff happens, i get Flame sword and earthquake hammer for the upcoming battles. The magus sisters goes amazingly well as on the first attempt of fire3 I get a successful reflect on the fatty and lead into probably my quickest magus sisters fight. awesome!

Valvalis:
The wonderful hair twirler comes up and basically was a pain. I didn't use my SLOW strat (cast slow, well i tried...) but the fight went well. Nothing to really complain about.

Golbez:
Ok this was a head desk moment for me. I remembered to swap Cid and Cecil but I forgot to set btl spd to 2. I have NEVER EVER EVER made the Kain jump at btl spd 1. I always set it to 2, and thus this is why this next part is interesting. The dolls goes ok, Cecil gets muted. Mute apparently beats out hold in the status affect world so... thats helpful for the fight after Cal + Brena.

I attempted the jump and it failed... but since cecil is mute and can act early I get my party up to a decent standard to fight. Unfortunately Rydia dies here.. (important note for this later). But the fight goes off quickly cause of btl spd 1 and i forget to change it for a while...

Lugae:
So this evil doctor is totally bombarding my friends. So I break in to take him out. I used to grab the bandana from near the start of the dungeon but it never plays enough of a role so I started skipping it. Also it wasted a lot of time to equip it and re-equip it elsewhere cause the damage dealers like to leave your party. Anyway lugae comes in, btl spd 1 again. I miss killing hte doctor barely before the robot comes so he suicides and blows up cecil (hard 3k damage yo!).

The next fight went pretty well despite him killing a few key people but they get up quickly and the rotation works. Rydia ends up dead again (ugh, really annoying but more on this later).

Rubicante:
A bunch of running around, and i finally FINALLY set battle speed to 2. Stuff works out, very quick rubicante kill cause he is nice to me. But Rydia died again (UGH!)

FuSoYa:
Stuff happens, i get FuSoYa quickly.. blah blah. This is only a split so the level grinding is more apparent on actual luck of getting the combat.

Level [50] grind:
HORRIBLE HORRIBLE FUCKING LUCK! nothing more needs to be said of this. The rotation is very fixed and as such I have to wait for Rosa to cast cure 2 between attacks or else it can screw up horribly. So I am patient with this fight.

Four [one] Elements:
Elements were slow because of wall falling a bit early or something. Thats about it.

CPU:
Annoyingly bad timed and some bad execution. Nerves were shot from the time lost between the two above... Nothing more to say about this bitch.

Zeromus:
WONDERFUL WONDERFUL REDEMPTION! Kill; I win.

The strat I use is based off of Deign's original but with more polish. Battlespeed is set to 4 as its the best speed I have found to balance the pace of the match in the beginning and end. Rydia decided to live through the first two big bangs and led to a really quick Zeromus death.

This game really hates me and I have to now use this time to record where I had lost attempts.
Water Hag vs Edward claimed 3 total
Fabul claimed its own fair share (about 5)
Mom Bomb claimed a few as well (4)
Mist D screw ups claimed 3.
2 were dead by power outage.
3 were killed by Dupe Glitch not working (Damn you Kain!)
1 was claimed by Waterfall

many more were claimed by random Back attacks and such.
1 was claimed by horrible CPU luck, another by Grinding.

By far this run has been amazingly evil to me, and has provided a lot of frustration. There are improvements available at least to get another 10 minutes off of this time, but 6 of that comes from just grinding which is PURE luck. Eventually this will have to fall to sub 3:50 real time. The time on the zeromus kill of this run was 3:54:31

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