|Genre||Gaming, Super Mario 64 analyses|
|Total views||24.55 million+ (pannenkoek2012)|
24.01 million+ (UncommentatedPannen)
Updated: June 20, 2020
pannenkoek2012 (// (listen); Dutch pronunciation: [ˈpɑn.ə.ˌkuk tʋeː.ˈdœy̯.zənt.ˈtʋaːl(ə)f] (listen)), is a Super Mario 64 analyst and YouTube personality. Pannenkoek2012 is known for creating highly technical videos detailing the mechanics of Super Mario 64, in which he explains techniques he uses to beat levels of the game while completing various self-imposed challenges such as not using certain buttons or the joystick when completing objectives in the game. In 2014, he collected a coin previously thought unobtainable in the "Tiny-Huge Island" level. In 2015, he offered a US$1,000 bounty for anyone who could recreate a specific glitch in Super Mario 64. The bounty remains unclaimed.
Super Mario 64 videos
Super Mario 64 was the first video game pannenkoek2012 played as a child. In 2013, before finishing college, pannenkoek2012 started uploading videos of reaching Super Mario 64 objectives without jumping on his pannenkoek2012 YouTube channel. Though Mario's primary skill is considered to be jumping from platform to platform, pannenkoek2012 attempted to clear the entirety of Super Mario 64 without pressing the A-button (the jump button), by using the game's environmental hazards and Mario's dive and dive recover.
Pannenkoek2012 has done a large number of in-depth YouTube videos describing the mechanics of Super Mario 64, which Allegra Frank of Polygon describes as "programming lessons" both informative and inscrutable. In one video, pannenkoek2012 explains how a player can manipulate the random number generator of Super Mario 64 to make Bob-ombs blink or to determine the speed of coin drops. Despite the highly technical nature of these videos, he amasses tens of thousands of views on new pieces.
Since August 2013, pannenkoek2012 has challenged himself to beat Super Mario 64 by pressing the A button as few times as possible. This is significant because the A button makes Mario jump, a maneuver which is practically required in platform games like Super Mario 64. In one video, pannenkoek2012 showed that he was able to collect the "Mario Wings to the Sky" objective without pressing the A button by exploiting glitches that enabled him to "clone" a large amount of Goombas to form a ladder. This challenge took him two years of planning to achieve and the video took 55 hours to make. In a notable case on January 12, 2016, pannenkoek2012 uploaded a commentated video for the "Watch for Rolling Rocks" objective. Highlights in the video include an explanation of his "half A-press" notation (leaving the press incomplete by not releasing the A button), his use of a hyperspeed glitch to reach "parallel universes" (a collision glitch caused by integer overflow), his methods to manipulate the motions of the Scuttlebug enemy, and many other techniques that are almost never experienced in regular playthroughs, to obtain the star with only 0.5 A-presses. This strategy originally took thirteen hours in-game from start to finish, most of which were spent "building up" enough speed (i.e. exploit a glitch enabling the player to gain virtually unlimited in-game speed) for the "parallel universe" movement, but has since been reduced to 5.4 hours. After its release, the video was critiqued and spoofed online. In response to the video, Nadia Oxford of USGamer noted that pannenkoek2012's work, as well as that of other high-level video game players, is of high value for scientists in various fields. She noted that pannenkoek2012's analyses of Super Mario 64's mechanics may be of interest to mathematicians and physicists, and said that there may be sociological implications as well, since one could ask why a large group of people feels compelled to turn a video game inside-out and abuse its mechanics as pannenkoek2012 does.
As of April 2020, Super Mario 64 can be completed in as few as 19 A-presses.
In June 2014, pannenkoek2012 collected what was known as "the impossible coin", an item hidden in the "Tiny-Huge Island" level of Super Mario 64 that was deemed impossible to reach. In 2002, the coin was discovered by a GameFAQs Super Mario 64 message board member named Josiah. The coin was placed underneath the ground, likely by one of the game's developers by accident. Considered unobtainable, the coin was dubbed "the impossible coin"; pannenkoek2012 managed to collect it using tool-assistance by jumping and kicking on a single frame while moving out of water. Pannenkoek2012 noted that it should be possible to collect the coin without tool-assistance, but doing so would be highly difficult and require a lot of practice.
In the Super Mario 64 level "Bowser in the Sky", pannenkoek2012 discovered a misplaced Goomba located at the bottom of the level, which he dubbed the "Mystery Goomba". Since Goombas drop a coin once killed, and the enemy currently seems to be impossible to kill, he called the Mystery Goomba's held coin the "new" impossible coin. In October 2016, pannenkoek2012 discovered another impossible coin in "Tiny-Huge Island". The enlarged version of the course was found to have a line of four coins, even though all other lines of coins in Super Mario 64 contain five coins. He showed that there was a fifth coin that activates a failsafe that no other coin in the game activates, causing it to be immediately removed from play, leaving only four coins in the line.
In August 2015, Twitch streamer DOTA_TeaBag encountered a glitch in Super Mario 64 level "Tick Tock Clock", where Mario suddenly teleported upwards in the level. The "upwarp", as it is described, caught pannenkoek2012's and others' attention, as if they could find out how the glitch was performed, it would allow players to skip large sections of the game or complete the game with fewer uses of the A button. If high-level players could reliably recreate the upwarp, they could potentially shave off seconds during speedruns. Pannenkoek2012 offered a US$1,000 prize to anyone who could recreate the upwarp glitch and send gameplay data to him. The bounty has not been successfully claimed, though the glitch has been recreated by hacking the game and changing a single bit of memory pertaining to Mario's height. Since this has only been achieved by hacking the game, the bounty is still unclaimed. One hypothesis suggests that a stray cosmic ray caused the bit to change.
Pannenkoek2012 started working on a video detailing the workings of Super Mario 64's geometry in summer 2016. He eventually finished this video in May 2017, releasing it under the title "Walls, Floors, & Ceilings". The video details how Mario's movement is measured in the game – which varies depending on whether Mario is located on the ground, in the air, or in water – and how the character interacts with the hitboxes of objects along the way. Pannenkoek2012 noted that he considers the information in this video "extremely important", as he has been using this information to help him execute or dismiss strategies for years. Gamasutra described this video as a "passionate delve into the most granular details of level design". Since then pannenkoek2012 has released two more videos on this subject, titled “Walls, Floors, & Ceilings Part 2” and “Walls, Floors, & Ceilings Part 3” respectively. These videos contain more in-depth analysis of how the mechanics of hitboxes work.
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