[Speedrun] Part 3: Understanding that your first run will suck

For this update, I'll be showcasing the next two levels of the run, as well as the different methods and coping mechanisms I needed to learn to get through it, as well. I figured that an hour long run of making monkeys run would end up being tough, cause they do much more of that: jumping, climbing, hurting enemies and also maybe flying at some point. All of these things boil down to execution and muscle memory. I've never actually beaten DKC2, so I'm playing this game as if I were a kid who just started it up, which means that I don't necessarily know all the moves I can do to execute a speedrun at breakneck speeds.

But perhaps breakneck speeds is not what I need to get a speedrun... done.

Disclaimer, the following gifs used for this post and future ones will look a bit different. I'm using a capture card that has a lot of interlacing and I have yet found the way to remove that. Sorry.

Mainbrace Mayhem is the 2nd level of the game, and already we're seeing a stark difference between it and the previous level: It's all vertical. You can't run in the vertical axis, what the fuck! I just learned how to roll, now you're telling me that I need to learn how to jump?!

For the sake of not giving me a headache for making this update, I'm keeping this image in its regular size, but spoiled. It's the map of the second level, read it from bottom to up, or up to bottom if you're a splitscreen screen looker. Nobody liked you, Geoff.


The blue in this image indicates when you're going to use the Team Up technique, where you're a circus act, throwing your ally without care to whatever abyss there may be, or not, but considering this is a speedrun, there is no abyss, unless you missed your throw, in which maybe there will be one. It's a very useful technique that makes the speedrun look cool. It's also useful to skip a good amount of the level, so I think it's win-win. Just know how to throw your friend or you might lose them.

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The first throw.

I'm getting the hang of this! Said I, as I was about to touch ropes.

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My rendition of moving with ropes.

That doesn't seem too bad, right? Wrong. There seems to be some crazy magic way to jump around on ropes that I can't, for the life of me, understand how to perform.

Here's how the safe strat tutorial does the level.

The safe strat. The fucking safe strat tells me to go john fucking madden on the ropes. I don't know how to do that! It's discouraging and I feel like I'm gonna somehow tangle my fingers together attempting to do it.

Or perhaps it's fine... Maybe me sucking shouldn't be the issue. Maybe the issue is me wanting to give up after looking at a tutorial video.

The point of this (double/quadruple feature?) garrison is to complete a speedrun and showcase how I've done it. You guys wanted to see cool tricks and shit and, well, I guess I'm doing my part. Motivation is a constant uphill battle when you're learning something new. Much like drawing, you will self-deprecate so much that you won't understand why you started in the first place. How will you ever be as good as the peers you praise so much when you keep fucking dying to that asshole bug near the end of the level? You'll be told to keep practicing and, yeah, perhaps it's true, but let me tell you how to get to that level even better.

Be accepting of your current skills and keep going with what you have.

Long gone are the days of wanting to improve after every attempt of a run, cause you won't improve that way. To improve is to be comfortable with what you have, and then add a little more to your own learning pace. Nobody should expect me to be the very best after learning the ins and outs of every single level, cause execution is quite as important. Besides, if you're looking for the best runs, I'm sure you wouldn't be looking at this thread right now. I could go on and on with going on tangents between speedrunning and drawing, but you can make those connections together. If you're going to learn how to speedrun, you will need to learn how to properly pace your routing:

1. Don't incorporate every single trick known in a speedrun into your first runs.
Unless you feel comfortable with executing them all on the first go because of how easy it is and I do fucking hope you tried before saying that, cause I would doubt it. Since this is DKC2, this is a game that has had the time to get an optimized speedrun, where every single movement is a detail perfected to get the runs to where they are today. If you're aiming for World Record, you're aiming to fail. You should be aiming for a time where an average speedrunner could get to when learning the game to a distinguishable extent. If you're aiming for that, you're also aiming to not incorporate every single move to use in a run. Don't get hasty, or you'll crash into a ditch. The ditch is filled with spikes somehow. Oh fuck, here's someone coming in now. Oh shit, he crashed into the ditch. He's dead now.

2. Mistakes are not an endpoint.
If you hadn't realized yet: If you make a mistake, there's more speedrunning to do. If you reset the entire run at a silly mistake, chances are that you will get brain fog the moment you get to a later part of the run. Didn't you say you wanted to learn how to speedrun a game? You're supposed to go from point A to point B, not point A to point A and two twenty-thirds.

3. Be the master of your own routing
Don't be scared to use your own route. A lot of commentators at GDQ will say how they have a marathon safe strat to get through a certain part of the game they're running. Speaking of routing, I looked at the any% route of some of the levels and I've come to regret my decision to run warpless. However, I'll keep on going until the end and will probably pick up any% afterwards lol

That's about it for this segment.

The rest of this level is self-explanatory, except for one little bit.

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Unfortunate victory fanfare.

If you jump from a greater height than jump height, into the target that signifies the goal, you will activate the equivalent of Kiss singing "I wanna rock and roll all night and party every day" ad nauseum. At least, that's what it feels like when you're speedrunning this game. You want to avoid hitting the target from a great height. However, this level ends right as you go down from a great height, so you have no choice but to go down to the platform and then jump on it.

Also, Diddy jams out with his beatbox for far less time than Dixie, who really insists on shredding on her guitar that spawns out of nowhere. Just thought I'd let you know.

The major differences between a high-level play route and mine goes as such:

- I make sure to climb the ropes, instead of jumping around as much as possible. It's definitely slower, but this is the kind of stuff I should be worrying about once I start reaching a competitive level.
- The kremling and the cannonball in the middle of the level is tough to run around in. That cannonball can fuck my run up really bad, so I'd avoid holding down Y for this part of the level.

It's not much, so it's not something to worry about on time losses. I can still get a fast time on the next level!


Gangplank Galley is a level that says fuck you to mindless speedrunning. Oh, you think because it's a horizontal level that you don't have to worry about crazy rope tricks anymore? Think again, fucker! The level designers made sure you're gonna eat SHIT if you try to go fast in a casual way. You know what that means?

Go fast another way.

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This is actually the second set of enemies in the level.

This ain't bad, you say! You've seen this already in the first level, declares your honorable self after watching me suffer through it!

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hey what's that under the kremling

I gotta let go of Y just because that kremling decided to play leapfrog with a fucking treasure chest?! It is a big whoop, it's only the third level and I'm being pitted against obstacles that prevent me from pressing the least amount of buttons to get to a quick result. Leave me alone. This is a different instance of the times where you gotta avoid throwables, cause this time, you have to let go of Y mid-roll to not pick up the treasure chest. I gotta keep of another method of going fast in mind now, I might need another brain to store more things to keep track of.

I think this bit is getting stale, I don't know where I was going with this.

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Oh, right.

Another point of routing that's a matter of split-seconds: This trio of kremlings bounce on purpose so as to fuck you over if you try to roll over them as you run through the level. If you simply run towards them and roll, you'll only hit the first one and roll under the rest, which prevents you from getting the sought over triple kill speed boost. *Cue Halo Announcer saying "Running Riot!"*

Getting all three kremlings forces you to step a bit back, then go to get all three. The "optimized" method calls for a "Moonwalk" trick, which, I don't fucking know what they mean, but you gotta moonwalk, because of how the game works.

Since I'm supposed to learn the game, I need to learn the tricks. In true homework fashion, I will be saying, in my own words, what moonwalking does.

How enemies work is that they only spawn when they're supposed to appear on screen. Other than that, they will wait at their initial position until their time comes. With how you move in this game, you occupy mainly the left side of the screen, letting you see what's in front of you (the right side of the screen). This means that enemies will spawn in time for you to react and do something about it so as you don't get hit.

What if you already know that they're there, but you don't want them to spawn by the time they're supposed to?

Moonwalking sort of solves this problem by making you face left, which automatically moves the camera... to the left. BUT, at the same time, you can move right, so you can manipulate the camera to spawn the kremlings later, which gives you the opportunity to hit all three of them as they spawn closer to the ground, enough time for you to hit all three.

...Or you could just do a safety jump and then hit them, as seen in the above gif. Again, I'd feel comfortable doing that than spending hours trying to understand how that trick works. If I keep focusing on the same level over and over again, it ends up being boring and kills my motivation to keep going.

Last point of this level is this right here. Very minor, but worth talking about for a sentence or two.

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No Kong's Land

Like I said: Minor Point. Usually, these lowered platforms with kremlings spell super killing sprees with your roll attack but, once again, the level designers decided that you do not deserve the satisfaction of doing so. The optimized strat here is to wait a very slight bit once you end up on the right wall before jumping back up, or else you will hit that kremling. It sucks, I liked it when going through a level had flow.

Nothing else to talk about this level. If you're wondering why I didn't put a whole map with a path, it's because I'm not arsed enough to do one. I don't have a reason to do so, either. If you want to know what it looks like, look forward to my world 1 video on next update.

Until then!

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Oh god if this is your first time ever fully playing DKC2 get ready to clench your asshole. Some of the levels in this shit are bad enough on a first run without trying to learn them fast-like. I'm sure you'll learn the tech eventually as you keep trying, execution seems really key even more than normal in this game's speedruns. That shit with the enemy placements cucking you out of the speed boosts if you don't slow down is BULLSHIT though. Hate breaking game flow much like you said. The troll chest to make you release the cartwheel button is funny, on the other hand : ^)

Glad that you keep supplying videos and maps and such. They make this a lot easier to process than just descriptions or still images.
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