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Intellivision Master
01-17-2020 at 06:24 PM
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Astrosmash scores MUST be removed and moved

I've been checking out Intellivision Astrosmash:

Here's the leader-board:

1. 4,201,875

2. 797,035

3. 653,405

4. 569,835

5. 566,380

6. GLEN SAMPSON: 417,945

7. to 10. Four Others: Between 11,000 and 307,000.

If the scores above Glen were achieved at all , they were NOT done on Disc level starting speed. The book says that the highest "points level" is at 100,000 points. Which is "6X" the points compared to the points when the game starts. The book also says "at each higher point multiplier, the action increases in speed".

What the book doesn't say: Is that although the "points multiplier" maxes out at 100,000; the game also speeds up MARKEDLY at the following intervals:

200,000

300,000

400,000

** 450,000 **

500,000

600,000

700,000

800,000

900,000

1,000,000

Not one score above Glen's score was done on Disc Level. I have an asterix at 450,000 because for some strange reason, at 450,000 the game feels like it DOUBLES in speed; whereas on all other increase-level, the game increases maybe 10% to 20% faster.

It is my opinion that "if these scores were achieved by the second through fifth place leader" they were done at the SLOWEST SPEED; using Button-3 to start their games. The scores of 566,000 to 797,000 are possible on Button 3. The 4,201,875 score .... is complete nonsense in my opinion. The other 4 scores are possible on "Button 3" starting level.

Since we have no documentation to prove their starting speed, those 4 scores should be moved to another track called "Button 3". OR: Change the track to be called "Start on Button-3" or "Select any starting speed" AND remove the top score.

If you want some evidence: Glen's score is 417,000. An amazing score on Disc Level. Yet nowhere near the 797,000 alleged high-score on the game. If you look at ALL of Glen's scores in the Intellivision database, he's either at the top or 90% as high as the leader. On Astrosmash, "mysteriously", Glen has half of the alleged high-score. That makes no sense. That's great evidence. Don't take any of my scores into account. That would be biased. If you follow the ratio of all of Glen's scores in the Intellivision database, compared to his score of 417,000, the high-score on Astrosmash should be around 485,000 on Disc-Level.

I know I've said in the past "default level" should mean "disc speed" on a Mattel-made game if everything is identical on all of the starting levels except the "overall speed" of the game ... But I also said that it's a "general rule"; and that each game has to be looked at individually. On Astrosmash, on Button-3 starting level; at 450,000 points, the game is "possible" to keep going for very high-skilled players. Whereas on Disc-Level, the game is "Near Impossible" to continue after you pass 450,000. That's a MASSIVE difference.

If I had my druthers, I would remove the top score, and change the name of the track to "Start on Button-3".

I'm not looking for debates, followed by anger, followed by name-calling; followed by hostile personal attacks and hatred :) So I'm just writing an editorial here at TG regarding the "Obvious" from an experienced Intellivision player.

It's just a shame that one of the most iconic games on the Intellivision cannot be properly contested at TG.

I can start a Dispute ... but I have no way of "proving" these folks' starting level. I will add that since these five players allegedly played the game on an Intellivision console, they had to each select a starting speed to start the game. The fact that all five of them were "ok" keeping the track called "default level" is very telling to me. They were not concerned in the least of proving their starting speed. That's another indicium that they all started on "Button-3" speed. If someone achieved a score on Astrosmash on Disc Level, they would want future competitors to have to use disc-speed to start their game.

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Comments
  1. Intellivision Master's Avatar

    It's all about compromise ... otherwise any two Gamers would get nowhere trying to fulfill this task.

    Totally agree: Pausing is a grey area. I'm just thinking ... 4.2 Mill will be extremely difficult to beat without having that same availability ... however, I'll try to beat 4.2 Million without pausing my game.

    @Jace Hall If you agree with this thread on Astrosmash; since we're trying to keep the game rules constant between historical and future contestants; can you please replace the wording in the Rules:

    From: "Start your game by pressing “DISC” from the title screen".

    To: "Start your game by pressing any difficulty setting/speed from the title screen".

    On the game track for Astrosmash called NTSC/PAL - DEFAULT SETTINGS - PEAK SCORE

    Here is the link:

    https://www.twingalaxies.com/game/astrosmash/intellivision

  2. Intellivision Master's Avatar

    It's all about compromise ... otherwise any two Gamers would get nowhere trying to fulfill this task.

    Totally agree: Pausing is a grey area. I'm just thinking ... 4.2 Mill will be extremely difficult to beat without having that same availability ... however, I'll try to beat 4.2 Million without pausing my game.

    @Jace Hall If you agree with this thread on Astrosmash; since we're trying to keep the game rules constant between historical and future contestants; can you please replace the wording in the Rules:

    From: "Start your game by pressing “DISC” from the title screen".

    To: "Start your game by pressing any difficulty setting/speed from the title screen".

    On the game track for Astrosmash called NTSC/PAL - DEFAULT SETTINGS - PEAK SCORE

    Here is the link:

    https://www.twingalaxies.com/game/astrosmash/intellivision

  3. Intellivision Master's Avatar

    Brickout

    Space Armada

    Lock N Chase (I may have just added "look for a white dot" OR I added also "Start on Disc Speed" - I don't remember)

    Shark ! Shark !

    Night Stalker

    Motocross

    Astrosmash

    Auto Racing

    Skiing

    That's the list @Snowflake

    Could you start each one on your page ... so we can keep this one more for Astrosmash and "fixes in general".

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  4. Intellivision Master's Avatar

    I will be starting a wall post on ASTROSMASH ... the legendary game ...

    Now that we got to the bottom of it ... The history ... The rumours ... Possible Scores ... The programming ... "The contest"

    I have most of the information now to solidly report on this enigma of a game - - I'm 90% of the way there of having ALL of the facts.

    Look for my post Mid-Week. You don't want to miss it !!!

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  5. The Evener's Avatar

    I think the pausing may be less of a grey area in terms of how it was treated on consoles where there is a kind of pause to engage gameplay after losing a life or in this case destroying the bad guy. Check out the referee note on Yars Revenge for example:

    The game pauses everytime you destroy an enemy. This means that the player can take breaks as long as the player desires

    https://web.archive.org/web/20011112121152fw_/http://www.snipercade.com/atari/atari_tgts.html

    I also saw this permitted somewhere in reference to River Raid so I think it was just a given that if there was a gameplay mechanic where the player had to engage play after losing a life or completing a task the player could take advantage of this as required without any limitation

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    Updated 01-19-2020 at 06:44 PM by The Evener
  6. Snowflake's Avatar

    Thats' VERY interesting. i know lode runner has simliar pauses but the rules are after 10 seconds the guiness rules for breaks (same as marathon) kick in.

    I know there was a lot of talk about todd's 100 hour journey escape as not being humanly possible. If ron allowed infinite breaks in those scenarios the scores became way more possible. lol, at that point the only real limit is how many video tapes do you wanna keep buying and running while you sleep. granted, its my understanding todd claimed he never took a break and playeed without sleep, but my point still remains that these rules would really allow crazy scores if infinite pause was allowed. all i can figure is the monetary value of tapes and continuos record precluded crazy naps.

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  7. Snowflake's Avatar

    fyi, to practice for my lode runner marathons i absolutley would play 3-6 hours a day, and then just lea ve the game paused and come back the next day. that way when i did the 12 hour score for real i had practice with all the levels at least.

    if infinite pauses were allowed, oh man, play across a week, i know i'm silly enough that i would've put up some insane scores, and in this culture i dont think i'm the only one that silly.

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  8. The Evener's Avatar

    I agree there could be lots of fun to be had but making a ref watch an 8 hour video of a still screen while the player got some Zzzs probably would have compelled refs to put a limit. :) So in the absence of such a limit, I guess the break takers didn't push it to danger territory

  9. The Evener's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by Snowflake

    on and once this is flushed out i intend to make a forum post that links to this for more permanence. when the times comes to fix atari 5200, 400, and 2600 the stuff done here will help explain to people down the road why the current "default" settings on those systems need reexamination as well. not to derail this thread, but i stronlgy believe frogger on the atari 400 used to allow the easier setting and one person had an easy score unfortunatley rejected as a result of the current rules.

    I see the "default" rules for Frogger were updated in 2018 - how was it written before? Looks like the default update might be coming back to bite us in the ass. It's clear now that "default" meant "easiest" settings - just came across a Coleco snipercade page that said "default" means "skill level 1" (easiest).

    Updated 01-19-2020 at 07:26 PM by The Evener
  10. Snowflake's Avatar

    before my time, but i know atari 2600 had massivlye had changes for 1b -- and we cant just mass revert because some things might have truly been 1b.

    @voodoo_chilly entered a score for frogger (i forget if it was 5200 or 400) that was about to be accepted. i feel bad, because my comments were never meant to get it rejected, just to highlight an issue. he played on easiest (which i believe should be fine) and i brought up the track said default so we should accept but also get a rules change. my comment led to a reject. if i recall correctly john remembered back in the day it being users choice. John, can you confirm?

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  11. voodoo_chilly's Avatar

    Yeah that was 5200. It was "canceled" by myself. Everything changes decade after decade, so memory of this "easiest" level goes to late 90s early 2000s. For example, here is the 1998 TG Records Book entry for the game in this topic, Astrosmash. At first, after TG started back up again, it was kinda based on this book's "rules". As you can also see on this page, AD&D game says "Skill level: hard" but most games have NO Rules set like Astrosmash doesn't as you can see. I remember this being discussed in the forums back then but don't know how to access all of the old archives. What you see on the current site isn't all of the forum posts back then.


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  12. voodoo_chilly's Avatar

    Also look at the page for Auto Race: Track 1 White Car. His score is last place now in current database. But which car did #1 -#4 use? With TGSAP we can check which car you and AL used...red car. So even though old scores for games in the database for #1 look fake for a lot of games based on TODAY'S rules...here is one where last place (#5) should maybe be #1 - but for the white car. It's not fair to Sam Hartman - whose game rules at the time say "white car" as you see in this picture in my last post - should get grouped with what appears to be today's "player's choice" of car. Here is a perfect example of "player's choice" today (rules don't specify what color car you pick) can affect scores from the past in a negative way.....just as "player's choice" of the past (people playing easiest level because that was the rule at the time) can have a negative impact on scores by players today with different, harder settings. A lot of today's scoreboard problems arise from poor scoreboard changes and poor updating over the years. Even Sam Hartman's score date says 2004 and this score was in 1998 book.

    So glad TGSAP exists

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  13. Intellivision Master's Avatar
    I just hope I won't be expected to redo a bunch of scores because one score had an archived rule set that was not available when I played it.


    Just for example... there was no “use white car” in the rules when I played it.


    There was a problem with about a dozen scores in the DB when I arrived. That was fixed. There were incorrect button notations, incorrect starting levels compared to the video(s)... etc... it's 99% fixed now.


    I just hope I didn't waste all that time.


    All the tracks are defined. I got all my scores according to the tracks and rules. The ones that STILL don't make sense... I haven't played since I would be wasting my time entering a score.


    Imagine if I played for two weeks and entered 725,000 for third place and found out 3 years later those guys submitted a Polaroid and were expressly permitted to play on button 3 !!!


    Take Moticross for example, there's 4 scores. Definitely Glen, Roger and I all played on disc level. To change it to “default” makes no sense. Because there's an advantage to playing the game on slower levels. I think you can get a faster time even. ALTHOUGH... on disc level it's already in slow-motion.


    Ps) there's no breaks in Astrosmash like on River Raid when you lose a man. There's absolutely no breaks. To go pee, a player will lose maybe 30 men. That's likely the difference between getting a WR and losing it to a guy who paused his game 50 times to get the same score.
  14. Intellivision Master's Avatar
    I'm with Garrett.


    If a score isn't on video and it's suspicious, it wasn't done.


    Here there were screenshot scores with game pauses ... with very suspicious scores... yet we're spending hours of our time accommodating them.


    Voodoo: Even that auto racing score that allegedly used the white car.., show us his video using the white car Lol
    You said his fifth place score should be first. Show us the video :) never mind did he use the white car... did he even achieve that time that he claimed?


    I just want to compete. I took a long break last time because I wasn't competing... I was spending all of my time trying to fix the database and wasn't playing any video games.... and getting complaints about it to boot !!! Why even log in ? Who needs the aggravation?


    I just wanted to put in an Astrosmash score... and the whole scoreboard blows up again.
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  15. Snowflake's Avatar

    al i dont want my scores gone either but we have to be consitent. an even playing field is always needed regardless of how it affects us. fortunatley theres a solution that covers everything. two solutions really
    1. split the track and move scores accordingly
    2. make the rules such that all scores are ok -- make everything users choice. i wouldnt say this is the answer to everything but i do think its the answer to everything currently brought up. for difficulty setting, it used to be users choice, and going back to it doesnt really hurt anyone. for the cars, i guess keeping it users choice is a little unfair to those who cant come back, so i think if jace/twin galaxies wanted to split the track and move the old scores to "white car only" but leave our scores on users choice that would make sense.

  16. voodoo_chilly's Avatar

    Like you said above Intellivision Master, " I got all my scores according to the tracks and rules." That was actually a point I was trying to make. So did that guy who played under "white car" rules set in 1998 . Also, you stated, "You said his fifth place score should be first. Show us the video :) never mind did he use the white car... did he even achieve that time that he claimed?" Well, the rules at the time didn't require video (was hard to do that at the time), but that was according to the tracks and rules at the time (1998). The last quote I will quote you on, "I just want to compete."...AMEN to that! Me too.

    For the record, I have no idea about these Astrosmash scores but I definitely trust your expertise in determining what is questionable. I've played it before, but not a lot. If I remember right, your score decreases when stuff gets by you. If thats the game then I remember it as a very tough fast-paced game! In fact I think I played it in a tourney on the Atari 2600 version on Atariage site few years back, so I may have not even played Intellivision version.



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  17. Snowflake's Avatar

    vodoo, on atari its called 'astroblast" on intell its called "astrosmash", same game, i dont know if there are minor tweaks though. an i believe tg has two tracks since you're right score goes down if you miss stuff, so one track is for peak score, another track is for final score

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  18. swaggers's Avatar

    Just trying to figure out the timeline here.

    Al had TG change the rules to say Disc Speed required.

    THEN Garrett and Glen both submitted scores in good faith under these new rules.

    NOW Al can't get the World Record so Al wants to change the rules yet again?

    We have TGSAP scores submitted and accepted to this track under the Disc Speed rules. I say leave it alone. Where was all this research and due diligence when everyone was gung-ho to make everything Disc Speed?

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  19. Garrett Holland's Avatar

    Quote Originally Posted by swaggers

    THEN Garrett and Glen both submitted scores in good faith under these new rules.

    My initial reaction to this was, "What the hell is he talking about? I've never played this game on the INTV. Why am I being brought into this?" ... then I looked at the scoreboard. LoL! Wow ... I'm getting old. Where's my Geritol ...

    I'm certain Al isn't protesting because he "can't beat it". The dude can go the rest of his life without turning on another INTV and still go down in the annals of history as the INTV G.O.A.T. It does appear that the 4M score at the very least was played under settings that anyone now would be prohibited from playing under. That's a legit beef as far as I can see it.

    As for my score ... meh ... I played this one time ... one and done. I just got the system and wanted check it out, and this game and about 4 others just so happen to be the practically random games I threw in to test it, so I have no real attachment to my score. My only disappointment is that my score of 0 on Tron that I submitted and it passed TGSAP doesn't show up .... well ... because the score was 0 ... which was also a WR at the time. LoL!


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  20. The Evener's Avatar

    I don't think anyone's scores are in jeopardy; I hope that the Snipercade info will be useful going forward for other future questions around rules "at the time" for older scores on classic consoles. I'm not fully in the know about the INTV rule changes but if the Snipercade info helps illuminate old questions and spurs further rule refinement I think we shouldn't be afraid of making revisions where required - best to get it right even if it takes a couple of tries.

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