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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

How do I TAS?

Basic Mupen64 TAS Tutorial

What is STROOP?

Main article: STROOP

STROOP (SuperMario64 Technical Runtime Observer and Object Processor) is a diagnostic tool for Super Mario 64 which displays and allows for simple editing of various game values and information. It can connect to a running emulator and update values in real time. Some core features include views of loaded/unloaded objects, Mario structure variables, camera + HUD values, an overhead map display, and many more.

What is Mupen?

Main article: Mupen64

Mupen64 (otherwise known as Mupen64) is an N64 emulator. A variant of Mupen64, Mupen64-rr, is most commonly used for TASing Super Mario 64. This is what most people in the TAS community mean when they say "Mupen". There is also an emulator known as Mupen64Plus, which does not have TASing capabilities, but is commonly used for RTA.

Why Mupen over BizHawk?

Most TASes of Super Mario 64 are done on Mupen64-rr. This is for one main reason: .m64 files can be played back on console, known as Console Verification, whereas bk2 files cannot, due to the way they handle input during lag frames. BizHawk polls inputs on lag frames, as opposed to Mupen64, which does not, and SM64 doesn't either. BK2 files (BizHawk movie files) can still be converted to m64 files, however, so some still use Bizhawk.

Where can I get an SM64 ROM?

A quick google search can help you with that. Unfortunately we cannot provide links here because of copyright.

What different challenges are there?

As of now, there are 11 challenges that have gained decent popularity, along with many minor ones. Some of the more well-known include:

See the Challenge and Other Single Button Challenges pages for further info on these and others.

How many A presses are left?

An any% run takes 0 A presses when performed on Wii VC. A 120 star run currently takes 20 A presses when performed on the original Japanese N64 version. Here's a table showing these counts on all game versions:

N64 JP (Original) N64 US N64 PAL N64 JP (Shindou) iQue Wii VC JP Wii VC US Wii VC PAL Wii U VC JP Wii U VC US Wii U VC PAL 64DD Version
Any% 1 1 1 1 1 0 0 0 1 1 1 1
120 Star 20 22 22 22 22 21 21 21 22 22 22 Impossible

Is a 70 Star 0 A press run being developed?

Nobody is currently working on it. However, through the use of Mupen64-WiiVC and Replay Hack WAD injection, it would be possible to TAS such a run and play it back on Wii VC.

What's the next A press save going to be?

The short answer is we don't know. We are always attempting new ideas and new methods in order to make another save, but ultimately we are never absolutely certain that what we try out will achieve one. The current progress has been on Tick Tock Clock as of recent, which has managed to save 2 A presses.

How are you decompiling the game?

After we discovered the compiler that Nintendo used for Super Mario 64, we obtained the raw assembly from the ROM, and are reverse engineering C code that compiles into it. This is a long and tedious process, but many prominent members of the community have made excellent progress so far.

Why does Mario lose his hat when he dies from going out-of-bounds (OoB)?

Mario's default state is, surprisingly, with no hat on, and on each frame it checks whether he's wearing the hat and sets the proper graphics flag. However, when Mario goes OoB, a large portion of the central Mario code stops running, including that check. Hence, Mario doesn't actually lose his hat; he just forgets he's wearing it.

When I record an AVI on mupen, the sound works but the screen is just black. How do I fix this?

This is a bug that occurs when you use the gl64 video plugin when aero is enabled on your computer. One fix is to use another video plugin, or to disable aero on your computer. The latter is only possible on Windows 7, but unfortunately not on Windows 8 or 10.

How do you continue off of a TAS you created earlier?

Play it to where you want to continue, then save a state. Disable read-only mode and reload the state. The file will now start recording inputs from that point, erasing any you had previously made after that point.

I just got through the 8 Star Door to Bowser 1 by grabbing onto it with a ledge grab! Is this useful?

No. Clipping through the door with a ledge grab is a side effect of the patch in the SM64 Editor program that "improves collision." It is not actually possible in the original game.

Mario's animation doesn't update when you dive recover against a wall. Is this useful?

No. It is a purely visual glitch and has no effect on gameplay.

I was doing a BLJ on the endless stairs and warped straight to Wet-Dry World. Is this new?

No. You clipped through the wall and went above the painting. The game checks whether or not you entered paintings by checking whether or not you are above floor triangles behind them, even when you are really high up.

Mupen is open, but the Mupen window disappeared and won’t come back, even when I restart. What do I do?

This is a glitch that occurs when Mupen is closed while minimized.

To fix it, open task manager, make Mupen full screen. Then drag the window down. You can alternatively click on the Mupen icon with shift held, click maximize, then drag it down.

Deleting Mupen’s config file also works.