I was going through a very old hard drive and happily recovered some pictures (and a single video) from 2003, when I played this game. Most of them would (apparently¹) be world records by some margin if they could be verified. I thought that the SR.C S3TA community might like to have these times to refer to as baseline times to beat.
I also suggest that the S3TA boards here be expanded to record the fastest single lap, to separate glitched times from non-glitched times, and to have a leaderboard for each of Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles, as the three characters are mechanically distinct.
Notably, you shouldn't need separate leaderboards for S3 and S3K. The only difference between the two games that I'm aware of is that the hole in the ceiling in Balloon Park was patched in S3K. If you have separate boards for glitched and non-glitched, that will automatically be taken care of.
Currently, the SR.C leaderboards have a mixture of glitched times (Azure Lake S3K, Balloon Park S3, Endless Mine S3, Endless Mine S3K) and non-glitched times (all other tracks.)
Anyway, here are the times that I recovered:
Azure Lake - 17'31" - (5lap, Non-glitched, Sonic) Azure Lake - 02'81" - (Flap, Non-glitched, Sonic) Balloon Park - 21'81" - (5lap, Non-glitched, Tails) Balloon Park - 03'35" - (Flap, Non-glitched, Tails) Chrome Gadget - 28'76" - (5lap, Non-glitched, Sonic) Desert Palace - 26'38" - (5lap, Non-glitched, Sonic) Desert Palace - 04'86" - (Flap, Non-glitched, Sonic) Desert Palace - 04'46" - (Flap, Non-glitched, Tails) Endless Mine - 35'90" - (5lap, Non-glitched, Knuckles) Endless Mine - 06'98" - (Flap, Non-glitched, Knuckles) Endless Mine - 25'60" - (5lap, Glitched, Tails) Endless Mine - 04'73" - (Flap, Glitched, Tails)
Note that The Sonic Center has a leaderboard for S3TA, but from what I can tell, none of the claimed records have even a picture for verification (much less a video), and the site seems mostly defunct. They also appear to have a "freestyle" section intended for glitched strategies, but users have clearly posted glitched times in the normal (non-glitched) leaderboard.
¹ I haven't made an exhaustive effort in search of better times, there may be other sites, communities, or channels on youtube with more up-to-date information and better times.
The characters used to be split out, but it was decided to join them together as there's not a huge difference between them, along with most racing games not separating characters out. As for S3/S3K being split, there is a plan to bring in the GP times from https://www.speedrun.com/classic_sonic_extensions#S3K (with joining the characters into the same board rather than separate). Having them combined means S3 has an unfair advantage over S3K due to BP. I also believe the Desert Palace glitch is marginally easier on S3 than S3K.
Keeping S3K separate means it's not walling off certain people from competing (S3K is easily obtained on steam, S3 requires ROM splitting and using an emulator). Many EU players have an NTSC console, but a PAL S3 cart, and as only S3 is region-locked, they can't play S3 standalone.
With laps being so short, I'm not sure sr.c is really the place for logging f.laps. Can't find another racing game that logs f.laps here.
I'm not aware that there's any difference between the two games when it comes to the DP glitch, and the video that you linked doesn't appear to express an opinion one way or the other. If I'm correct, then simply separating runs by glitch status is sufficient, and seems like the more sensible option.
Either way, you would need a copy of S3 to run the BP glitch. Every other category could be run on either game. Nobody would be "walled off" that isn't already being excluded under your current system.
The point is that by separating runs by glitch status, you would allow people to actually run and compete in the non-glitch category. As it stands, all of the records here "should" be nothing but glitch times -- except S3K BP, obviously -- though that's not the case because no expert players have bothered to submit times. Regardless, only supporting glitch runs is uninteresting.
Note that on SR.C, most multi-lap racing games with IL leaderboards do, in fact, track flaps:
https://www.speedrun.com/dkr/levels https://www.speedrun.com/mrm/levels https://www.speedrun.com/bfr/levels https://www.speedrun.com/looney_tunes_racing/levels https://www.speedrun.com/pmwr/levels https://www.speedrun.com/mrc_multi-racing_championship/levels https://www.speedrun.com/rblxsbb/levels https://www.speedrun.com/roblox_karts/levels https://www.speedrun.com/mxvsatvreflex/levels https://www.speedrun.com/mx_vs_atv_untamed/levels etc.
Additionally, many popular old-school racing franchises like Mario Kart and F-Zero have community websites predating SR.C where they track flaps:
https://www.mariokart64.com/mk64/wrc.cgi https://www.mkwrs.com/smk/ https://www.mkwrs.com/mksc/ https://www.mkwrs.com/mkdd/ https://www.mkwrs.com/mkds/ https://www.fzerowrs.com/snes/ https://www.fzerowrs.com/x/ https://www.fzerowrs.com/mv/ etc.
From what I can tell, tracking flaps is overwhelmingly the default behavior in multi-lap racing games and their communities.
Also note that very nearly 100% of games on SR.C separate leaderboards based on glitch status -- i.e. they don't put glitch runs and non-glitch runs on the same leaderboard -- because people enjoy competing on both styles of run.
I'm not on a pc at the moment, but from a quick glance over these, the flaps are generally longer than a single race here on comp mode.
Where they are in the single digit seconds like here (in the case of dfr and mrm at least) glitches or oob are performed to get the time and aren't separate categories.
By combining S3 and s3k, the glitched category end up requiring S3 to compete, having a board that separates them means they can be competed on separately, hence why they are separate.
It's worth also pointing out, that using the same tech in the main game does not constitute a glitch. E.g. we go over ceilings in at least Hydro in Glitchless, along with a number of levels where we avoid triggers or path swappers to save time. So if we did something with splitting this off it would likely be using a different terminology like "Shortcuts"/"No Shortcuts".
[quote=BenInSweden]I'm not on a pc at the moment, but from a quick glance over these, the flaps are generally longer than a single race here on comp mode.[/quote]
Of what significance is the length of the flaps? You said that you couldn't find any games that tracked flaps. I showed convincingly that, in fact, multilap racing games here and elsewhere overwhelmingly default to tracking flaps. It seems to be interesting information that most games not only display and record, but that most players also seem interested in tracking.
In other words, ok, S3TA has shorter races than most multilap racing games. So what?
[quote=BenInSweden]Where they are in the single digit seconds like here (in the case of dfr and mrm at least) glitches or oob are performed to get the time and aren't separate categories.[/quote]
Of course you know that the 800-pound gorilla in this space -- MK64, which has far more players and runs than every SR.C game listed above combined, and three times as many players as any other MK game -- keeps leaderboards for both shortcut and non-shortcut runs. (As do SMK, Super Circuit, MKDS, MKWii, MK7.)
Yes, you can find games that don't do this, as well. But it's starting to seem like you're simply cherry picking information that confirms your existing bias, in order to reach a predetermined conclusion. That is, you don't appear to be arguing in good faith, and it appears that you have no intentions of ever changing anything, no matter what, and there's nothing that can convince you otherwise.
I believe that approach is unwise and ill-serves this community. You should try to determine how to make the most interesting and accessible leaderboard for this game. Yes, we can look to other leaderboards and similar games for guidance, but we need not be bound by them. (But even if you want to slavishly adhere to prevailing trends, as we've seen, MK64 -- the biggest game in this genre by far -- organizes its leaderboards essentially the way I'm asking you to do here, as do most other MK games, all of which are also much bigger than any multilap racing games on SR.C.)
Consider that running this game might be more attractive to more people if the leaderboards tracked all interesting and distinct ways of playing the game. (I can only imagine that Werster, whose video you linked before, and who I now note has times on his youtube channel for every single category I'm suggesting, hasn't submitted here because these leaderboards are such a disaster. The dude has 900+ runs on SR.C and for some reason hasn't bothered to submit his world record times to this S3TA leaderboard ... 🤔)
[quote=BenInSweden]By combining S3 and s3k, the glitched category end up requiring S3 to compete, having a board that separates them means they can be competed on separately, hence why they are separate.[/quote]
You don't need S3 to compete in the glitch category. You need S3 to do BP glitch runs specifically. This fact remains true no matter how you organize the leaderboards.
Separating leaderboards by game means that you're tracking S3 and S3K times for AL, CG, DP, and EM, even though those runs are all mechanically identical regardless of your choice of game. You're keeping two separate leaderboards for each of those tracks that should logically be merged. Furthermore, as currently organized, both your S3 and S3K leaderboards "should" be nothing but glitch runs. Non-glitch runs aren't competitive on those four tracks, regardless of your choice of game.
Separating leaderboards by glitch status means every single leaderboard is tracking an interesting and mechanically distinct run, and you're tracking all interesting and mechanically distinct runs (ignoring character choice.) Nobody will be excluded that isn't already excluded under your current system. You will need S3 to run BP glitch, which is true now, and will always be true, regardless.
In fact, separating based on glitch status is more inclusive because then everyone can compete together on unified leaderboards for 9 of the 10 races, regardless of which version of the game they own. Right now the S3 category excludes all S3K players from competing on all five tracks, instead of just the single mechanically distinct category on a single track. And obviously the reverse is true: S3 players are currently excluded from competing on the S3K half of the leaderboard, even though only one of the races is mechanically distinct.
[quote=BenInSweden]So if we did something with splitting this off it would likely be using a different terminology like "Shortcuts"/"No Shortcuts".[/quote]
Ok? It doesn't matter what you call it, as long as the chosen names are meaningful and relevant.
I've been in this community for 4 years, and in that time, despite multiple changes to the comp mode boards over that time, nobody has had the desire to see or even mention having flaps recorded. I even pointed a few runners to this thread after you created it, the general response was there was very little point, the laps are so short, and there was (as there has been) no desire to log individual fastest laps. Hence why their length is a factor here and is something I've held since my initial response: "With laps being so short, I'm not sure sr.c is really the place for logging f.laps."
Aside from that, you go off and make claims that have no factual basis for your arguments.
werster doesn't submit his times because his videos don't comply with the emulator verification rules that were put in place a few years. He hasn't argued against the rules either, he just doesn't submit runs.
If you really want flaps recorded, feel free to create a google sheet of the ones you can find, you can also post it in a thread here if you like for others to see.
It's surely true that not asking for positive change is unlikely to achieve it. So far I've been nothing but polite and matter-of-fact in this discussion. I fail to see how anyone could construe my behavior as "hassling", though in my estimation that could easily describe your own comment. What could you have hoped to accomplish with your post other than to silence reasonable discussion?
It's obviously false that nobody wants to record flaps, as this very thread was created because someone wants to record flaps. Moreover, the game itself already reports all of the relevant information! (As do all games in this genre that I'm aware of.) That functionality didn't just materialize out of the ether. The game's developers believed that enough potential customers would be interested in flaps that they spent development resources implementing a feature to report individual lap times.
It's also historically false that nobody "has had the desire" to record flaps, as The Sonic Center kept and ostensibly still keeps track of them. Even though the site is now essentially defunct, beginning in 2003 and for over a decade, it appears to have been the premier destination for the Sonic speedrunning community, and was quite popular by the standards of the early internet.
Based on forum and leaderboard participation, Sonic 3 speedrunning was vastly more popular under The Sonic Center's stewardship than under yours. Note that, for example, at least 78 people submitted AL flap times to The Sonic Center between 2003 and 2016: https://www.soniccenter.org/rankings/sonic_3/time_attack/azure_lake/single_lap . That's a significant desire to record and compete in the flap category!
But even absent this overwhelming historical evidence, simply the fact that virtually every other game in this genre -- on SR.C or elsewhere -- organizes their leaderboards more or less in the manner that I'm suggesting, should be a strong indicator that perhaps this leaderboard is serving its community poorly.
It's hardly persuasive to claim support from "a few runners" -- who for whatever reason can't be bothered to publicly express their opinion (much less actually play the game!) -- confirming your personal bias that SR.C "isn't the place" to record flaps because they are "so short". I'm not aware of any other game on SR.C or anywhere else that has ever made such a distinction. (And even if an obscure one exists, none of the ~25 most popular racing games appear to do so.) All other racing game communities appear perfectly happy to record arbitrarily short flap times, and their members appear perfectly happy to compete in achieving them: https://www.mariokart64.com/mk64/course.cgi?c=3 . (This is just one example among dozens.)
Anyway, it's difficult to imagine what potential harm there could be in reorganizing these leaderboards to conform to the consensus standards of the communities of every other racing game ever, and I've soundly refuted your every excuse for why such a reorganization shouldn't take place, with exhaustive documentation and references to boot.
Admittedly, I did speculate that the derelict state of these leaderboards was the reason why Werster (who you brought up) chose not to participate in them. This speculation was apparently incorrect, which apparently inspired you to categorically assert that "[I] go off and make claims that have no factual basis for [my] arguments", though in truth that seems to be a more apt description of your own posts. Regardless, my speculation about Werster never had any particular bearing on my line of reasoning.
That being said, whatever reason Werster has for not participating here, it remains mystifying and problematic that you don't think these leaderboards should adapt to include someone like him, if you believe his runs to be legitimate and verifiable. I don't know anything about him other than that he appears to be the world record holder in the categories this leaderboard purports to track (and more), and that he's incredibly prolific, as at the moment he has 963 other runs listed on SR.C, most of which appear to have been done on emulators and verified by their respective communities, including many emulated Genesis runs.
It seems quite unlikely that he uses substantially different setups for different Genesis games, so it's peculiar to say the least that his S3 Competition Mode runs somehow don't comply with your emulator verification rules, despite his standards of proof apparently being sufficient for so many (all?) other communities. I also note that, weirdly, he now even has a run on these very leaderboards, added by you three months ago: https://www.speedrun.com/s3k_competition_mode/full_game#S3 , though at first glance nothing appears to distinguish it from any of his other S3 Competition Mode runs.
Anyway, this was never supposed to be about Werster, and as I already mentioned, my speculation about him has no particular bearing on the topic at hand beyond the general observation that if you're somehow excluding runners like him, perhaps these leaderboards aren't serving the community very well. But given that you linked one of his videos, and given that as a result I then looked at his channel, I can't help but note that it seems peculiar to me that his runs wouldn't be listed here, and that you would claim the reason is because he doesn't comply with emulator verification rules despite doing so on hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of other runs, many of which are emulated Genesis runs, and some of which are even emulated Genesis runs of other Sonic games!
Maybe, just maybe, these leaderboards aren't adequately serving the community, and maybe, just maybe, that has at least something to do with the sad state of S3 Competition Mode speedrunning today!
The general rule for categories and such is that if enough people do runs of said category and want it to be added, then it will be added. Even if you ignore the fact that runs under 10 seconds are extremely short for SRC, there has been not one person outside of you who has asked for Flap records on the site.
Why do people like catching me out when I only have access on my phone? [quote]It's obviously false that nobody wants to record flaps, as this very thread was created because someone wants to record flaps.[/quote] Nice splitting hairs. Are you always this pedantic about people's wording? Of course I was excluding you in that because it's obvious you started this thread.
[quote]The game's developers believed that enough potential customers would be interested in flaps that they spent development resources implementing a feature to report individual lap times.[/quote]
But yet never implemented a record of the fastest lap time, only top 3 race times, funny that.
[quote]Note that, for example, at least 78 people submitted AL flap times to The Sonic Center between 2003 and 2016: https://www.soniccenter.org/rankings/sonic_3/time_attack/azure_lake/single_lap . That's a significant desire to record and compete in the flap category![/quote]
So 78 in ~13 years, if my maths is correct that's about 1 every 2 months, for what is essentially an honour system where people could just submit a time without video proof, many don't even have image proof. Also, no sign of werster on those boards either? I wonder why! Could it be he got banned for cheating and ban evading maybe. Also quite a few in the community believe that his classic sonic videos over the past few years have been TASes for entertainment purposes, rather than done in real time.
[quote]It's hardly persuasive to claim support from "a few runners" -- who for whatever reason can't be bothered to publicly express their opinion (much less actually play the game!) -- confirming your personal bias that SR.C "isn't the place" to record flaps because they are "so short".[/quote]
And in a similar vein, people don't seem to be rushing to publicly support the request here for flaps.
As I said previously, feel free to create a Google sheet if you want to start tracking it, which you could have spent time doing rather than writing an essay response in a "well, actually" fashion.
dude has like five runs in the 7+ years he's had his account and spends most of his time bitching on forums on src. like Ben said, no demand for it, do it yourself. or go do literally anything else.