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Ben Heckís Todd Rogerís Dragster 5.51 record Part2


90 replies to this topic

#26 Thrakk OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Dec 28, 2017 1:32 PM

I don't believe Todd is honest with his Dragster records but I want to believe that messing around with Atari hardware can subtlety effect a game - giving a slight edge to speedrunners. The idea of "cheating" without software hacks, hardware mods or raw video editing is an interesting subject for me. For instance, let's say that unplugging a controller and quickly plugging it back in helped someone get a world record in Dragster. Would that be cheating? I'm more interested in the concept than whether it is actually possible.


Edited by Thrakk, Thu Dec 28, 2017 1:34 PM.


#27 Dave Everett OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Dec 31, 2017 3:46 PM

I’m also wondering about differences in hardware revisions of the consoles themselves. Would that potentially introduce some timing variances?

If you mean timing variances in the game, the game 'timing' is not a timer, it's a counter, updated by a fixed amount each frame. If you mean timing variances of the Atari itself, the crystal oscillator that runs the TIA also clocks the 6507 CPU. That oscillator is what controls the display to the TV and if it is too far off, the Tv signal will not work properly.

 

If you could maintain the TV signal, but slow the CPU way down, you might get an advantage, you would have more time to make your decisions. But the CPU and TIA are tightly connected so this is more likely to cause everything to stop doing anything useful.

 

Dave Everett



#28 mikey.shake OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Dec 31, 2017 6:09 PM

I'd like to become the prince of video games. Is there a special school for that or would I have to perform an Illuminati-style Eyes Wide Shut naked sex ritual around a bonfire as I drink the blood of freshly killed virgins in front of a giant owl statue?


"Yes."

#29 Lauren Tyler OFFLINE  

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Posted Sun Dec 31, 2017 6:36 PM

 

 It's also come out that Todd submitted a faked Activision certificate with the 5.51 time.

 

As much as I want to headdesk at this news, I have to say I wonder what other certificates he's forged.



#30 Shawn OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 1, 2018 3:29 AM

Ben is golden, it's Jace - the new owner of Twin Galaxies - who is being ridiculous with all this.  I've read the (180+ page) dispute thread on their forums pertaining to Todd's Dragster score, and at every turn, Jace evades or says they are looking at confirming with an independent 3rd party expert.  This was after Omnigamer, Thomas Jentzsch and others already had looked at the code and determined his score impossible (especially using Todd's supposed method for obtaining that time).  While I have no doubt about Ben Heck's expertise, it is a bit unnecessary at this point.

 

All this time, Todd could simply be streaming his Dragster attempts on Twitch, but isn't.  It's also come out that Todd submitted a faked Activision certificate with the 5.51 time.  In any case, I'll withhold further comment until I can watch this Pt. 2 video at home this evening.

 

Can you shoot me a link to the info and any pictures of the fake activision certificate you speak of?



#31 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 1, 2018 12:05 PM

 

As much as I want to headdesk at this news, I have to say I wonder what other certificates he's forged.

 

I believe he had to take back is Barnstorming record after someone proved it was impossible by removing all the obstacles and still not getting that time.



#32 Lauren Tyler OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 1, 2018 12:54 PM

 

I believe he had to take back is Barnstorming record after someone proved it was impossible by removing all the obstacles and still not getting that time.

He actually admitted to his misdeeds? Now that's a surprise!



#33 Atarius Maximus OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 1, 2018 1:09 PM

I was able to get a 5.44 using my hacked auto-shift version of Dragster (the auto shift code was written by Thomas Jentzsch), I took a pic of the screen in this thread.  It may be possible on the original game. 



#34 The Evener OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 1, 2018 1:46 PM

I was able to get a 5.44 using my hacked auto-shift version of Dragster (the auto shift code was written by Thomas Jentzsch), I took a pic of the screen in this thread.  It may be possible on the original game. 

 

I believe that time was based on the original hack ROM from Thomas - he issued an updated ROM that took into account some mechanics that he accidently modified. The updated ROM cannot achieve 5.51.

 

http://atariage.com/...core/?p=3833801



#35 The Evener OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 1, 2018 1:52 PM

 

Can you shoot me a link to the info and any pictures of the fake activision certificate you speak of?

 

Here is the original post with instructions inviting everyone to conduct their own analysis and comparison of the two certificates in question - Todd's 5.64 certificate (found in the DRAGSTER 35th anniversary YouTube video), and the 5.51 he submitted to Twin Galaxies, which was posted by TG admin in the dispute review as it was received from Todd. I appreciate that the allegation of falsified evidence is a serious accusation, so the more people that wish to conduct their own comparison, the better it is for establishing a consensus. 

 

http://www.twingalax...ll=1#post934997

 

Omnigamer created a composite overlay of the image, which is quite illustrative. My own comparison of the two certificates with mark-ups can be found below his. To see the full-sized images of my post, you need to click and "drag" the photos to your desktop and then you can load them into a viewer application.

 

http://www.twingalax...ll=1#post935029


Edited by The Evener, Mon Jan 1, 2018 2:07 PM.


#36 Atarian7 OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 1, 2018 2:56 PM

His Sky Jinks and Skiing 1B to 3B times were also bogus.

 

I also have reason to believe that 29.47 is not possible on Grand Prix.      When you are a little smoother and faster in the first 2/3 rds of the race it adds an extra car blocking your path towards the end.  Avoiding

this car increases your time.  I've gotten 29.61 without seeing that extra car.  When I did see the extra car my time went up to 29.67 or somewhere in that neighborhood.



#37 Tempest OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 1, 2018 4:35 PM

He actually admitted to his misdeeds? Now that's a surprise!

No not really.  I believe he said he must have been playing a prototype version of the game (his usual excuse).  I'd have to double check on that though, but I think the story is in the other Dragster thread somewhere.



#38 Random Terrain OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 1, 2018 5:21 PM

2017 was a year that destroyed many mainstream heroes. I guess 2018 won't be any different. :_(

 

Isn't there something we can do to save the king of video games before it's too late? I know! Let's summon the Friendly Angel! He'll know what to do!

 

youtube.com/watch?v=onntXB7qRts



#39 The Evener OFFLINE  

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Posted Mon Jan 1, 2018 10:28 PM

Always great to see classic Trek; I think in this case, though, the Friendly Angel will take a pass.



#40 The Evener OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 2, 2018 6:19 AM

I was happy to do it. I love classic 8-bit hardware and making a RAM dumper/analyzer was a fun challenge.

 

BUT..... I see myself as the guy making the microscope, not the guy using it to analyze blood stains.

 

What I've suggested to Jace is we Osh Park up like 3 of these things, one for Todd, one for Omnigamer, and maybe a third party (perhaps on Atari Age?) For Todd I'd add joystick support, so he can "map in" his style using a real stick, then adjust it manually for best results.

 

Thus far, all of Omni's predictive spreadsheets have been confirmed in real hardware. If it can be done, my system can do it, but the magical formula is not my forte.

 

A belated thanks Ben for all of your work - it's been an immense help to the TG community, and to answering important questions concerning Dragster. Happy New Year



#41 Shawn OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 2, 2018 8:21 AM

https://i.imgur.com/VlxurQO.mp4



#42 The Evener OFFLINE  

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Posted Thu Jan 4, 2018 7:18 PM

Thanks for the link - I uploaded a smaller gif version here for reference

 

Attached Thumbnails

  • ezgif-5-da09ffae2d.gif


#43 Nathan Strum OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 9, 2018 11:18 PM

Did anyone else notice this?

 

product-placement.jpg

 

No... not that Ben is playing paper football incorrectly. There's an AtariAge sticker in the background!

 

Clearly, it's some sort of secret message! Albert and Ben Heck are in cahoots! A conspiracy is afoot!

 

(Actually... I just wanted to use the word "cahoots".)

 

(And "afoot".)



#44 Random Terrain OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 9, 2018 11:22 PM

No... not that Ben is playing paper football incorrectly.


I thought he was saying that his beard goes to eleven?



#45 Thomas Jentzsch OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 10, 2018 11:44 AM

Ben is golden, it's Jace - the new owner of Twin Galaxies - who is being ridiculous with all this.

The problem is, that disproving the existence of something is by faaar more (or even impossible) complex than proving it. The rules of TG state, that once a record has been accepted (proved), it has to be disproved to be removed. Which IMO is a good idea, else all records would soon be in chaos with conspiracies all over.

 

But when you think about it, there are almost unlimited possibilities to question any confutation. So you have to accept that almost any confutation is incomplete. And there is where opinions start and the discussion becomes subjective. Jace expects a much smaller gap in the confutation than others. Whether his request is over the top or not, that's what most of the discussion is about. And unless Jace lowers his expectations, I am afraid the discussion will go on forever.



#46 glazball OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 10, 2018 12:05 PM

Agree completely.  Jace's actions betray another agenda though.  Possibly just brewing up interest in Twin Galaxies and internet traffic, but that's speculation on my part.  We all know everyone loves a good controversy.

 

I think it's great Jace wouldn't want to rush to judgement.  It's very wise, I'd say.  When he says he needs an independent, 3rd party investigation (which we eventually found out was Ben Heck), you don't send the guy with the score in question to help the investigation!  That's exactly the opposite of independent investigation (with all apologies to Ben, who along with you, Thomas, and a few others are gods among all us retro gaming proles).

 

It's that kind of attitude I see from Jace that causes me to question his motives.  I should also mention I'm not a member of TG and don't know much about Jace other than what I've seen in his posts.  I'm just a curious and interested spectator... or perhaps rubbernecker is a better term since this dispute has become quite the trainwreck.


Edited by glazball, Wed Jan 10, 2018 12:06 PM.


#47 Final Theory OFFLINE  

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Posted Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:15 PM

One method that I haven't heard anyone talk about really is the art of Cartridge Tilting.

 

This is where you purposely make the cartridge to system connection flaky causing glitches. Here is a video. You can also do a search on youtube for cartridge tilting.

 


Edited by Final Theory, Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:15 PM.


#48 VectorGamer OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 23, 2018 4:40 PM

Dragster Designer: Without "A Shadow Of A Doubt" About Todd Rogers Record

http://www.twingalax...rogers-record/1



#49 Nathan Strum OFFLINE  

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Posted Tue Jan 23, 2018 5:34 PM

Dragster Designer: Without "A Shadow Of A Doubt" About Todd Rogers Record

http://www.twingalax...rogers-record/1

 

He makes some good points - especially:

"I can’t tell you how many times over a 35 year career making games that I thought I had identified the best and fastest way to play a game, only to be proven wrong by a 14 year old game player who came at it in a unique way.”

 

*cough* Laser Blast. *cough*

 

When we were making Stay Frosty 2, we designed how levels were "supposed" to be played. Then when we started watching peoples' replays of them, some had completely different solutions, some of which worked better than our original intent.

 

Still - I think there should be a way to prove his record, if it's indeed possible. Whether it's through Ben Heck's rig, or tool-assisted runs, or whatever. Even if it's a one-in-one-thousand fluke, it should be reproducible - especially with Todd's claim that he did it three times.



#50 glazball OFFLINE  

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Posted Wed Jan 24, 2018 10:22 AM

 

Sorry that I can’t provide anything more concrete than my opinion.

 

So again, more words and non-answers from Twin Galaxies.

 

I trust David Crane's opinion.  However, he never claims in that interview that he personally witnessed (or even saw photographic evidence of) Todd's 5.51 score.  His opinion is that he believes Todd, but we all did until it was shown that his score is mathematically impossible.






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