Demystifying Nightworld

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Snuggsy187
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Snuggsy187 »

This is just one of the most interesting threads I've read, congratulations!
Tend to agree, although Diminished's Citadel Dissection is pretty amazing too ! :D
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=14190

Top work, Ed and tendril ! =D> =D>
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Ed »

tendril wrote:
Fri Oct 30, 2020 6:45 pm
And there it is - the fleece!
I'm not sure what made me check this forum today, but I'm very glad I did. Thank you so much for the catharsis of completing the last piece of the puzzle! It also makes me feel a bit better about not finding it myself, knowing it was buried so deep. Funny, when I was writing my original post I had a sentence like, "It looks like there might be something at the top of room G...", but took it out cos I never found anything and the post was already too long.

Anyway, amazing work and thanks again! =D>

E.

PS. So what is that thing at the top-right of Room N? Perhaps I was right that it is a McGuffin, but wrong in thinking it was the fleece.
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Lum »

Ed wrote:
Sun Nov 08, 2020 9:48 pm
PS. So what is that thing at the top-right of Room N? Perhaps I was right that it is a McGuffin, but wrong in thinking it was the fleece.
I hope it's ok to necro this thread, but I've been having a mess with this game, and managed to reach the McGuffin
Image

Full disclosure: This wasn't done through skill, but with blatant cheating. Tendril's post gave me the clues needed to do this.
tendril wrote: ; If in room 10 (Ed's room J) on right and above halfway on Y warp to room 9 (N in map - fleece room)
62IFsc%=10ANDx%>=1152ANDy%>480:sh%=14:sc%=9:x%=68:y%=416:Y%=2:W%=5:CALLS%:PROCsr:PROCr:PROCsf:a%=2:ENDPROC
I loaded the disk image into HxD and blanked out the x%=68 with spaces (there's probably a better way to do this!) and lo and behold this warp now takes you to the right hand side of the screen. If you're not careful you'll get stuck in the wall but holding z and shift during the warp sequence will let you jump free sometimes. From here you just bounce on the monster and up you go.

So what happens when you touch it?

Absolutely nothing. No sound, no acknowledgement, you just clip straight through it. Success level doesn't seem to change. I died at 19% completion same as I did when not making it that far. On one go around I managed to survive long enough to transform back to Lee and still nothing.

Also you CAN shortcut through this room on the way to prism 4. You just have to avoid collecting the health regen item and the wall to prism 4 will be open. I honestly think this is a bug, and the code for the wall to prism 4 should be a >= rather than an =. I'm tempted to patch this, but it'd be nice if the original author would show up and make it an official patch that would be eligible for speedruns :D

I hope this solves the final mystery in this game and gives someone some closure!

Now if someone can say which part of the game I need to modify to get more health, maybe I'll actually be able to complete it too! :D
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

I've been pondering speed run routes for this one, looking at @Ed's map, along with the newly known location of the Golden Fleece, it would seem to me that you actually want to leave prism 2 till last? I haven't finished a run yet (still just practising in BeebEm and my goodness those controls are clumsy, my very first move was to immediately get stuck inside a platform on the first screen!)

So you go room A -> B -> C -> D, grab Prism 1, secret passage to lower bit of A -> I -> J -> secret passage to N -> drop to L -> M, grab prism 4, back to L -> secret passage to H, grab prism 3 -> F -> G, grab prism 2, grab golden fleece, then the mad dash to the exit.

Hopefully that makes sense to the experts? Of course what I have not taken into account is any kind of timing of changing into the gargoyle (which you need for the prisms and certain jumps), hopefully it just sort of works out.

Another expert question, is the health item in the secret room required for 100% completion? If so that's a bit annoying as collecting it blocks off prism 4 which means you can't use the shortcut the first time around (probably by design). This is a really interesting game, and some great detective work on the thread to figure it all out!

EDIT - ah, the catch seems to be that the passage to prism 4 is closed regardless of whether you take the shortcut or not, if you don't have prisms 2 and 3 first. Pity!
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by jms2 »

Can anyone give me some advice as to how to get beyond the entranceway to Screen C? This is coming up from the bottom edge, when you first enter the room.

I'm still at the "getting stuck in walls and getting frustrated / confused" stage!
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

@jms2 I believe the 'correct' way is to wait for the bad guy to float over, time a jump to get on top of it then ride it up to the top Bubble Bobble style. There's a (slightly) easier way though, jump on top of the stationary bad guy and jump right from the very edge, stick to the side of the platform (you can cling onto walls like Ninja Gaiden in this one) then jump up.

Both methods are a massive pain, I don't think it's great design to have such a frustrating room right at the start before the player has even properly learnt all the controls!
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by jms2 »

Thanks, the sympathy and advice are appreciated! I'll have another go.

Edit: I managed to do it, and then "succeeded" in getting one of the prisms. Unfortunately I got stuck on top of it, which resulted in my demise. This really is a strange game.
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

Yeah, the white flash when you get near a prism is enough to confirm collection, then it inexplicably does damage when you walk through it
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

Forget speedruns, even with rewinds I'm just trying to get out alive! Si far I've got all 4 prisms but take too much damage on the last one and promptly die trying to backtrack. Just got to make it to that health pickup then the pressure is off a bit.

To replay, grab BeebJit, the bbmicro.co.uk version of Nightworld and use the following command line
-mode interp -0 Disc012-Nightworld.ssd -replay nw6.cap

EDIT - I have to say it's the vicious combination of falling damage for everything combined with single jump height (unless you bump into a ceiling or platform) and no ability to drop to the platform below or hop to the platform above that gets you in the end. The enemies are the least of your worries!
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

Aagh, and I cannot escape room L exiting left. @Ed says he managed it by bouncing off of an enemy but I can't even see how you'd line up a jump to even attempt it with those platforms in the way. What an irritating game, I would not have lasted long without savestates that's for sure!

EDIT - I figured out a way to do it, but sadly I don't have enough health to get down a large cliff due to the crazy falling damage. Back to the drawing board. I need to be less gung-ho in the first half of the game and conserve more health.
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

I've found a couple of improvements at least. The trick I use in room K to glitch inside the small platforms then get up to the top by will also work in room C, meaning I don't waste precious health standing on the stationary enemy. Also the winged monster that slowly flaps towards you doesn't hurt you in gargoyle mode (most of the time, seems to be a bit glitchy, maybe you need to be facing a certain direction), I was wondering how on earth you were meant to do room D without getting absolutely hammered for health.
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

Hooray! An 100% playthrough at last, the ending after you get the fleece is very dramatic! I had to allow a couple of 'hang around to turn back into the gargoyle' bits to pull it off. Getting the floor to disappear in the final room seemed to be quite hit and miss as well, spent ages in there. But this is a half decent baseline to work from at least.

As before, to replay use BeebJit with the following command line
-mode interp -0 Disc012-Nightworld.ssd -replay nw16.cap
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

Lum wrote:
Sun Apr 24, 2022 3:01 pm
So what happens when you touch it?

Absolutely nothing. No sound, no acknowledgement, you just clip straight through it. Success level doesn't seem to change. I died at 19% completion same as I did when not making it that far. On one go around I managed to survive long enough to transform back to Lee and still nothing.
I wonder if there's a way to get to this 'legally' by taking advantage of the disappearing floor when you've got the fleece? I managed to enter Room N having got the fleece but I have so little health left that the floating badguy (another menacing looking 'DM' just like the final guardian) does me in before I can try.

If someone comes up with an infinite health poke it'd be interesting to try and climb across the 'face' by causing the floor to disappear.

EDIT - here's Room N in the 'world is crumbling around you' phase, why did the dev have to be mean and take away that health pickup?
RoomN.png
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Lum »

bob147 wrote:
Mon Apr 25, 2022 1:56 pm
EDIT - ah, the catch seems to be that the passage to prism 4 is closed regardless of whether you take the shortcut or not, if you don't have prisms 2 and 3 first. Pity!
Yeah, I honestly beleive that the room 4 door thing is a bug. The game becomes much more tolerable with a quick code edit:

03IFsc%=13ANDs%=60:PRINTTAB(19,17)STRING$(3," "+CHR$8+CHR$10)

replace s%=60 with s%>59 and you get what I beleive was the author's original intent. To have the door open once you have prisms 1-3. The route then becomes prisms 1-3, optionally grab the secret health item, get prism 4, take the secret corridor back to the upper world, loop through the main part of the game again with the new mechanic and exit. With that you have a reasonable chance and don't have to spend ages killing time waiting for transformation as it's ok to lose a bit of health bouncing off monsters.

Knowing that the health item gets removed after grabbing the fleece, it seems unlikely that the author intended you to do three loops of the map. I guess after getting prism 4 maybe the intent is that you cross the bottom row of rooms to get to the secret corridor and then grab the health item?
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by scarybeasts »

bob147 wrote:
Wed Apr 27, 2022 10:49 am
Hooray! An 100% playthrough at last, the ending after you get the fleece is very dramatic! I had to allow a couple of 'hang around to turn back into the gargoyle' bits to pull it off. Getting the floor to disappear in the final room seemed to be quite hit and miss as well, spent ages in there. But this is a half decent baseline to work from at least.

As before, to replay use BeebJit with the following command line
-mode interp -0 Disc012-Nightworld.ssd -replay nw16.cap
Thanks for sharing this! I was always a bit mystified with this game (and terrible at it) back in the day.
Things seemed to happen with little rhyme or reason.
After watching the play through, things still seem to happen with little rhyme or reason :lol:
But it's nice to see how the game should be played!


Cheers
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

@lum it can be hard to tell sometimes. Maybe punishing the player for taking the health "early" is classic 80s difficulty and fully intended by the author, but I agree its certainly much fairer with your change. The player should be rewarded for finding the health, not punished imo.

@scarybeasts thanks, indeed I'd have struggled without the efforts on this thread, the game is hard to figure out. Not to mention every bloody thing hurts you including the things you're supposed to collect to win!

I quite like the idea of a side project of beebjit playthroughs of obscure platformers. Any suggestions?
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Lum »

So I'm still trying to speedrun this, albeit with the health fix I mentioned, without save states or TAS. It's tough because this game is super janky.

Without the health fix I think there will be a lot of waiting around and generally slower routes, certainly less entertaining to watch, but my main argument for this being a bug is that there's no sensible route where it's ever collected. If you were to try and get it afterwards you'd have to backtrack across the two most annoying rooms in the game, probably losing more health than if you just finished normally!

Anyway I figured I'd post my modded version in case anyone wants to compete :D

I haven't managed to properly complete it yet, but I'm bloody close! Here's my current best effort, died 2 screens from the end. The problem is preserving enough health to survive this climb and then the fall on the next screen, but sub 10 minutes should be acheivable.

Image
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

Ooh thanks, I'll give it a shot. My strategy for the big drop is to jump from the room above and cling onto the wall. You still lose health dropping from there because the falling damage in this game is insane, but it eases the blow! No strategy for the bit in your screenshot though you can't outrun the floating bad guy. Just blunder through as quick as you can.
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Lum »

bob147 wrote:
Sat May 14, 2022 7:46 am
Ooh thanks, I'll give it a shot. My strategy for the big drop is to jump from the room above and cling onto the wall. You still lose health dropping from there because the falling damage in this game is insane, but it eases the blow! No strategy for the bit in your screenshot though you can't outrun the floating bad guy. Just blunder through as quick as you can.
That's the same strategy I use :)

I'm starting to wonder though, without the fix, what if the correct route is through the health room to grab prism4 then back track across the bottom, into the health room again this time grabbing it and then complete the game. Or is the drop taking that route worse on health than just crossing the bottom twice.

This would actually give more health for the return to the upper world, at the cost of more time and having to survive the first part for longer.

Hmm, that's a tough one. I shall have to experiment, and also get beebjit working to watch your TAS :)

The only strategy I've found for the room in my screen shot is the timing of the first jump. Done right you can get past the first (statue?) before the monster is on you

Edit: I've managed to get the first part pretty well optimised. I can sometime get the first three prisms in exactly three minutes, with minimal health loss (timing starting from the moment you press a key to start the game) which means I spawn in the lower world as the gargoyle and then immediately screw up the first jump because it's different. Still struggling a lot with doing prism 4 reliably, I tend to get myself stuck in the exit wall if not using the "fixed" version, and still haven't figured out a good route back through the bottom rooms.
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

Well it's not a TAS, just a recorded playthrough with no optimisation at all. But I do take the route you described going through the health room twice, so it's certainly possible
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Lum »

bob147 wrote:
Sat May 14, 2022 7:08 pm
Well it's not a TAS, just a recorded playthrough with no optimisation at all. But I do take the route you described going through the health room twice, so it's certainly possible
In that case it looks like you currently hold the world record for this game :lol:
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

Lum wrote:
Sun May 15, 2022 1:42 pm
In that case it looks like you currently hold the world record for this game :lol:
As much as I'd love to claim that much sought after record :mrgreen: , what I mean is that the run was created using 'rewinds' to undo mistakes, but the final output file is a single complete run as if those mistakes never happened. It was purely to demonstrate that the game could be finished.

I had a crack at your 'health fix' version and did well, I got the fleece but blew it during the escape. This one was in BeebEm, so a genuine attempt at a playthrough in a single sitting without shenanigans!

Curiously 7zip compressed the raw beebem avi magnificently, but had a much harder time when I converted it to mp4, so the avi attached!

EDIT - I called it a 'no health' version before, now that would be difficult...
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Lum »

I've done it!

Original version, not health fixed. Single segment speedrun in 8 minutes 45 seconds, which I think I can safely call a defacto world record.

https://www.twitch.tv/videos/1486843398

Sorry I don't have a keyboard replay, and I'll replace the above link with a YouTube one once I've downloaded the vid and edited it. I reckon you could probably shave about 5 seconds off this route if you fixed my mistakes, especially in the Prism 4 room!

Some notes on the strategies I'm using and observations on this game, quite a few of which have come from this thread

Collision detection is janky AF. It appears to only detect at your feet for left/right/down movements, and also detect at your head for upwards movements, if a platform hits you in the chest or while you are falling down often you can clip straight through it. There are also random bits of floor you can walk through. I think the wall jumping is an intentional mechanic.
Fall damage in this game is insane. There is no jump height control, other than hitting your head on something.
Every 90 seconds you transform from human to gargoyle, this is indicated by the sun/moon moving across the bottom of the screen. Gargolye can jump higher, fall further and seems to take less damage from the statues and the bat-like enemies. This makes speedrunning interesting as as you optimise one section, strategies for the next have to change.

Room 1 (White/Cyan): I clip through the leftmost floor so that I can jump onto the wide platform from a lower height, avoiding two room transitions (this will make sense when you see the exit from room 2)

Room 2 (Magenta/White): No-way to avoid the two room transitions when jumping to the exit platform

Room 3 (Magenta/Yellow): I'm not sure if the official route is through wall jumping, or bouncing off the harpy, but if you jump from the monster head, 4 pixels down you can catch the next wall and go up side to side

Room 4 (Yellow/Blue): The harpy's left/right flight is fixed, but its height tracks you. I clip through the floor on the left and then jump early to clip the floor on the right to keep the harpy lower. this makes me less likely to get stuck on it when I jump on its back, and also reduces the damage taken.

Room 5 (Green/White): Getting past that bat without getting stuck is a PITA and I hate it. This one tanked so many runs

Room 6 (Yellow/Red): This is the first prism. When you touch the prism your success counter goes up by 20%. At exactly 60% the door to prism 4 opens. Oh and touching a prism also damages your health.

Room 8 (Cyan/Yellow): Those top three platforms are a nightmare. I have to jump when my foot is 1px away from the edge, this allows me to clip into the second platform by 5px which makes the jump to the third one possible if I wait until the last second before falling. I also need to land clipped at least 3px into the final platform to be able to make the jump back. It's also possible to get stuck on the bat here. For me this is the worst room in the game. Literally the first hour of the full twitch stream was me retrying on this bloody room!

Room 10 (cyan/green): Because falling straight down wastes time, and because jumping the gaps means I'll hit the harpy, I just clip the floor and walk straight through it

Room 11 (cyan/magenta): Surprisingly easy. Hold jump during the scene transition and keep hold of it until you reach the centre platform, hit left and right as appropriate and everything just lines up perfectly. There is no need to clip into the floor here, it just happens

Room 12 (magenta/white): You'll take a ton of damage trying to get past the bat and statue as a human. Also the first secret passage is here (necessary to complete the game)

Room 13 (magenta/cyan): We're back at the start, but now in the lower world. I guess it's good design that the dev tells you this exists from the start, to encourage exploration. Anyway those three statues and the bat will wreck you if you're the human, however aiming the jump at the end to avoid fall damage in the next room is much easier as the human.

Room 14 (cyan/blue): I catch my foot in the wall to reduce fall damage, then drop down. Official route is to go right, but it's more annoying. I should investigate if it's faster though.

Room 15 (cyan/red): The exit will appear here later, but we want the secret passage.

Room 16 (red/magenta): This is the room from the title screen. Top left is a health regen item, but collecting this adds 10% to your success counter, which actually closes the door to prism for as the dev made it only open at exactly 60%, so we can't collect it. Top right you're lead to beleive is your objective, the Golden Fleece, but it's impossible to access. I actually modded this game to teleport me to the top right and that item does nothing, it doesn't even harm you. Pure fake. Anyway we have to time the jump on exit for this room so we land in the correct place. Also I haven't found a way to avoid damage from the monster, avoiding it just makes it worse

Room 17 (Green/Magenta): If you look carefully at the centre right just as you enter, you can see the wall plotted and then quickly removed as the check for Success = 60 goes off.

Room 18 (Magenta/Blue): It's very easy to get stuck on the bat, so I wait to let it lower. Also when leaving the central passage to the left, if you're the gargoyle you're still in the air when you hit the edge of the room and then you get stuck in the wall. You need to jump as the human to make it. I failed to do that here and lost a bit of time & health falling straight now, as well as two other mistakes, lost quite a bit of time here

Room 19 (cyan/blue): The prism 4 exit is now closed. Also there's a required secret passage back to the upper world here. In theory we could save a load of time not going back for the health, but I don't think it's possible to conserve enough health and still complete the game. Also we drop down to the lower section ASAP because we need to guide the harpy down low enough to bounce off its back and get out

Room 20 (red/cyan): Not much to stay here, this room is just really really annoying

Room 22 (yellow/red): If doing an any% run you could exit here and finish the game, but this is a 100% run. Slightly different route as the gargoyle including a precise jump to avoid hitting your head on either platform

Room 23 (magenta/green): Finally some health. I think wall jumping off the left wall might be a quicker method

Room 24 (green/white): Now we get the secret passage, taking us back to the prism 2 room

Room 26 (red/blue): We've reached our objective, the golden fleece. You can only see/collect it if you're the human. Oh and the exit that has opened is a trap and will instakill you if you change room. On getting the fleece you lose the gargoyle and a new mechanic is introduced

From here it's just a retread of the route to the exit room only having to deal with the crumbling floor. No new stragegies, just try to conserve health.

Final room: The final boss doesn't actually do much damage, so if you've conserved enough health you can just fall straight through it rather than digging!
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

That's marvellous, well done! Im particular being quick enough at the start to not need to wait for another gargoyle transformation to do prism 3/under starting room withoug getting hammered by those flying enemies. But this also means doing prism 4 as a human which is really tough.

Oddly this is now the second game in a row where I've dabbled with routes then someone else has come along and made something far more awesome than I ever could :lol: great stuff!
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Lum »

So if it wasn't for you posting your run I don't think I could've done this. On the full stream I actually showed your run to give credit and talk about the differences. There's still places where you're faster, e.g. getting the health. Plus you're the first person to post any kind of completion video

I actually prefer doing the prism 4 room as human now, if only because jumping out of the room from the platform to the left of the central passage gets you stuck as the gargoyle (not that it mattered on this run as I missed the jump completely)

Debating whether to go back and try to improve this. I reckon 8:40 is feasible. Also I should be getting a real BBC soon so will need to record on real hardware and submit it to SDA :)
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

I just watched the bit of the stream where you review my run, I did feel for you having to keep talking whilst I screwed around in the final room for about 15 minutes :lol: I'd given up on rewinding and correcting by then, I just wanted to finish by any means necessary! Very impressed you managed to pull off the move where you clip into the platform for prism 3 to jump straight to it and not have to wall climb. I thought that was gonna be TAS only, it took me a bunch of tries to pull that off.
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Lum »

I just hope I did you justice. I wanted to do that to give you credit as well as showcasing how difficult this game is since a bunch of people joined during the actual run attempt and missed an hour of failures, but I've no idea how it came across. I haven't even rewatched that part yet!, was completely unprepared as that whole stream was meant to be me practicing with save states and chatting to a few friends.

Also sorry for screwing up literally every timer on your run, I was still shaking IRL.

The prism 2 room with the floor clip. I still really struggle. The trick is to jump when the gargoyle's foot is 1px away from the edge of the platform. I actually find the next jump harder to time, and after all that you can still miss the return jump or get stuck on the bat. I reckon that one room fails about 80% of runs but it's necessary to get past the lower world entrance as gargoyle
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Lum »

Just found a new exploit that knocks 5-10 seconds off the time between the first and second prisms. I have no idea how this works, happened completely by accident (and naturally I then completely failed to finish the run), when leaving the prism room I fell through the floor and landed at the entrance to the next prism room

https://clips.twitch.tv/RelentlessColdb ... Q0trrNLkVv

Anyone got a clue how this happened. It's a bit late for me to try and repeat it tonight!
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by bob147 »

So as you already know, collision detection is only done on the head/top half of your 2 units high character. So any block that is only 1 unit higher than the player with an empty space above can be walked straight through as long as he doesn't bump his head on anything else.

Apparently that also applies between screens. You don't need to jump, just get on the step below the exit and walk straight through! Good find. Might be worth checking the map to see if any other transitions are like that.

Apologies for the unfortunate gargogyle change/epilepsy attack in the video!

EDIT - hmm, it's interesting that jumping like that right into a corner with a single block above sent you down through the wall as well as across, so maybe there's more to it. Quick look at the map and I see a few possibilities to try.

-In the starting room, jump onto one of those corners and glitch into the lower area straight away? Might be useful for a non-100% run.

-It also occurs to me that a safer way to do the end bit would be to head back to the start room and dig down to the lower world (avoiding 2 winged creatures going the other way). Probably not faster though as you'd need to fall safely through the rooms above.

-In prism room 4 you could glitch through the wall back down to the bottom level of the previous room and avoid the whole 'stuck in the wall' thing.

Haven't proven any of those, it just looks like the blocks are the right shape to try it.
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Re: Demystifying Nightworld

Post by Lum »

Yeah it was the falling 2px into the floor before the scene transition that got me, but looking at your video I guess just not landing on the floor to keep the diagonal is what did it. Feels like it may be a pixel perfect / TAS only glitch, but I haven't had time to experiment with it yet since it happened live on stream (and god I wish I'd been able to finish the run afterwards, would've been an 8:30 easily)

As for falling through the floor to the lower world on the final leg. I have tried that, but found the health loss even worse than going through all the statues and bats.

Prism 4 exit could be interesting and I'll have to experiment with that. My main concern would be immediately triggering the secret passage and so missing the health regen.

Out of interest I wonder if it's possible to collect the health regen multiple times and what effect that would have on the success counter, or if it's possible to glitch through the floor of the exit room before it opens for a low% run?
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