Author Topic: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated  (Read 82653 times)

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Offline Sidseattle

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #30 on: February 03, 2018, 03:36:41 AM »
When are we getting a dkj/r HSL..when, the game has been out almost a whole year.


Offline V3rby

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #31 on: February 03, 2018, 04:29:09 AM »
Everybody knew that Billy was able to pull cheap stunts on many occasions, but thats a new low point.

After reading your explanation i'm 100% on your side, even though i'm not sure if his 2004 live score should remain.

Sure, it's been a "legit" score, but it's a question on how to handle someone who's not only cheated once but several times in the past.

Anyways, great insight into the technical side of things, very educational!

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Offline ChrisP

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #32 on: February 03, 2018, 05:16:07 AM »
Well done, guys. I guess it's finally out there and no longer open to dispute. The smoking gun was long in coming, and most of us never thought it would come.

I've been aware of the truth since the Kong Off 2 in November 2012 after a lot of private discussions, but aside from some heavy insinuation on my blog about the suspiciousness of Billy's submissions, I left it alone, because the bearer of troubling information generally accomplishes nothing except to paint a target on his back, have his motives scrutinized, and be vilified as a "conspiracy theorist." That is, unless you have proof (well, people will deny proof too if the truth is painful enough, but cognitive dissonance is a topic unto itself).

There are other reasons why I've tended to look the other way when it comes to Billy, one of them being the bizarre truth that his first illegitimate submission ("The Tape") was one of the key sparks that lit the King of Kong film, which in turn, became the spark that lit the entire DK competitive scene. Jeremy mentioned not wanting to live in a "house built on lies," but as awkward as it is, that's kinda what we're dealing with here, whether we like it or not.

If you dig into the making of the King of Kong, it turns out that Seth Gordon and Ed Cunningham chose to develop their footage into a Donkey Kong documentary only after the shoot was well underway, and only because the dramatic interplay between Billy and Steve was so strong. Billy's antics - of which The Tape was THE critical lynchpin - were key to that strength.

If The Tape never gets made, the King of Kong never gets made. And if the King of Kong never gets made... well... none of this ever happens. No heat develops around DK in the wake of the movie (which would have ended up being about Doris or Abdner or something), there's no multi-way world record competition, there are no Kong Offs, no DKF, and most of us never meet each other.

The Tape is our father.

It's a real mindfuck, and I've been grappling with this strange quandary for years, but Billy being Billy pretty much created the DK thing that we were all pulled into. And I am very, very grateful that I was pulled into it.

As for the other two, while The Tape was clearly a response to Wiebe entering the fray and "upsetting Billy's master plan for what he wanted to do" (ie, be the first player to break 1 million at DK), if you look at the timing of the latter two doctored scores, they were obviously timed in such a way as to (in Tape #2's case) hype continued competition and interest in classic gaming/DK as the movie was rolling out, and (in Tape #3's case) garner publicity for the opening of the International Video Game Hall of Fame. The scores were designed to be beaten, and he knew they'd be beaten.

In other words, I don't think Billy did those latter two scores for personal glory. I think, in his mind, he saw them as favors to the community, for which it's very obvious he has a deep fondness and generosity.

Sure, it's a weird, backwards, morally-questionable, and extremely Billy-ish way of operating, but there's something more multidimensional in his actions than just "cheating to be on top." I don't think he much cared about that anymore, at least when he faked the latter two scores. He was just trying to keep the heat on, for everybody's benefit. For all we know, somebody else was calling in favors, and he just went along with it. (In fact, there necessarily HAD to be numerous individuals involved for those scores to go up.)

So I'm just gonna stick with "misguided sense of the greater good," and not hate Billy for it.

All that said, this is a serious scoreboard here.

Take 'em down!
« Last Edit: February 03, 2018, 06:23:31 AM by ChrisP »
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4 Quarters :-* - 800K Avg. Per Qtr. :o - No Restarts 8) - No Proof :'(

7/26/2013   Coin 35,946   710,800   18-1
7/28/2013   Coin 35,947   903,700   22-1
8/16/2013   Coin 35,948   694,100   17-6
8/17/2013   Coin 35,949   893,100   22-1

3,201,700: the $1 World Record?
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Offline YesAffinity

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #33 on: February 03, 2018, 07:50:11 AM »
Didn't Billy put up a score greater than 933k on day 1 of a recent Kong Off?  I thought I remembered seeing the story at http://donkeykongblog.blogspot.com, but don't find it now.  I remember the picture showed Billy standing on top of two Donkey Kong machines, fists raised in victory.

At any rate, I don't think this is a situation comparable to Todd Rogers.  Billy has plenty of witnessed and credible performances.  The fact that he could show up to a DKO and post a 900k+ score on day 1 speaks to his level of skill in the game.  Given the data points of the removed scores, I think it seems more than plausible that those instances were all marketing stunts, theatrics, done as part of evolving the TG brand, however you want to call it.  Was there deception?  Yes, well the evidence seems clear, that is.  I agree with ChrisP's analysis as well.  But I continue to agree and support the decisions made for removal of the scores.  I don't want to imply that I'm reversing my personal stance, and unless new information becomes available, I wouldn't

All things considered, I'm leaning toward a final conclusion of "it's not that bad".  Is a hand slap and additional discipline in order?  Yes.  Has that discipline been rendered?  On DKF, yes...on TG, we'll see but my guess is that it will be.  I think if Billy and any colluders that have not already been ousted from the community were to come forward and fess up and the reasoning lines up with what we're hoping/expecting - that these things were truly done in the interest of the community, albeit a bit mis-guided, well I think I for one could forgive and move one.

At a minimum, Banning should be interesting this year.  <popcorn>

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Offline Mario500

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Offline Shane_NC

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #35 on: February 03, 2018, 04:29:00 PM »
I fully support Jeremy and agree 100% with his analysis of the evidence. Billy's scores in question should all be immediately removed. I take this evidence to be absolutely conclusive. Thank you so much Jeremy for taking the time to do this, and being in pursuit of the truth regardless of where it leads.
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Offline up2ng

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #36 on: February 03, 2018, 04:54:43 PM »
My thoughts and reactions about this news are very similar to what Chris posted above.  I've also been aware of the truth for a long time and have had mixed feelings about it over the years.

This news in particular and many other things which have happened over time within the hobby tend to make me sad and disillusioned about many of the aspects which I was excited about when I first got involved in this hobby.  However, the experiences that I have had and the friends which I have made as part of this community brings joy which greatly supercedes the negativity which has occured over the past decade or so and for that I am greatful.

In many ways I agree with Chris's premise that without Billy's actions with respect to this game we probably would not have any of the positive aspects of this community today.  The drama and intregue surrounding the early years of this high score competition was a clear catalyst in how so many of us became interested in the first place.

I'll take it a step further.  A long while back, shortly after I had broken one million points in MAME, I obtained access to the full game footage from Billy's 1.05M world record game which had been submitted to TG.  This was well before it had ever been posted in full or even as partial footage onto Youtube.  People really weren't supposed to have this footage but it had leaked out to a few of the players at that time.

As it now turns out, this footage now shows that this was a "fake" game insofar as it was at the very least misrepresented as a single credit live performance on an original arcade cabinet.  Instead, it has been shown that this game was likely played in MAME.  That game might have been played "normally" (a la with the -record option in Wolfmame) as a single credit legit MAME performance -- or maybe it was a spliced together MAME performance using the pause button, save-states and other tool assisted techniques.  We'll likely never know and I suspect that most members of the community wouldn't really care at this point after seeing the misrepresentations which have now been proven.  There is no .inp file available for this performance and no other evidence to prove that it was legitimate under the MAME platform rules.

However, what's interesting to me is that even though a few players were watching a "fake" performance -- they believed at the time that it was real and I am quite positive that this game footage was a major inspiration behind many of the innovations which began to be shared within the community for point pressing techniques and strategies as players began exploring the possibilities of not only reaching the game's kill screen, but in figuring out how to reach 1 million points and beyond, myself included.  This goes back to the old TG forum days and to when a few of us began to live stream our games back in the justin.tv era.

So, at the time, Billy really did innovate and discover many of the game's "secrets" surrounding the early evolution of point pressing going at least as far back as 2004.  The game play footage clearly shows ideas, techniques and strategies which were revolutionary at that time.  The fact that he may not have been able to actually execute these in a manner that's consistent with his legendary claims that he could show up in front of a live audience, pop a single credit, and achieve these types of scores "at will" is obviously understandable nowadays since we all know what it takes to get extremely good and how the randomness of the game itself makes this extremely unlikely -- but for whatever reason, those claims were made and that apparently led to these fabricated performances in order to support those claims.  For me, these claims were pretty much fully debunked after about 5 minutes of watching game play at the first Kong Off.  The level of disappointment and disillusionment upon that realization cannot be understated and I don't even think it affected me as much as some of the others at that time.  But at the same time, it's clear to me that his early innovations and his role in the timeline of events along the way (such as the ones shown in The King of Kong) were very important -- perhaps critical in the buildup of our current ongoing competition and to our community overall.

Given all of this, it's hard for me to know what to think about all of this exactly.  I do agree with the removal of scores which do not have enough evidence to prove that they were played in a legitimate manner for the platform, and I do agree that a player's lower score should replace the removed score if there is one that is known to pass the requirements given by the rules.  On that note, I am curious if any additional work will be done to review and determine if Billy has any legitimate scores higher than the 933k point game?  For example, I think that there were a series of two or three scores each by Billy and Steve which were all just under and/or just over one million points, some of which were officially submitted to TG.  I can remember some very lengthy papers written by Robert Mrukzek a long while back detailing these scores and publishing very detailed and extensive statistical breakdowns of at least one of these scores -- I want to say that it might have been a score of 1.014M points by Billy at that time?  Does footage of that game still exist somewhere?  Does Robert still have it?  Does TG have it?  Can that one be analyzed to see if it was also a MAME performance or original hardware?  I think that it would be nice to make sure that the "most correct" score is listed for Billy in the scoreboard.
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Offline BillyGaines

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #37 on: February 03, 2018, 06:07:20 PM »
Why leave the 933,900? Even if legit, the presence of illegitimate scores would disqualify him from being on any HSL, right?

That would make me the #1 Billy and I am not ready for all the instant fame.  ChrisP really summed everything up ... as he always does ... with perfection.  Without Billy no one would care about Donkey Kong scores.  It's a mixed bag indeed.  Jry made the correct move and I think it's time to move on.   Justice was served.   

I say there is a less than a zero chance of a <Billy> confession.   <Billy> is like J.R. on the 80's tv show Dallas.  About half the people hate him and the other half think he's awesome.  Either way, Donkey Kong is better with Billy Mitchell in the mix.  It was a ballsy move by Jry (the Todd Rogers scandal lubed the opening a bit) and his decisions are beyond reproach in my book.  Jry is all about fairness and has no ax to grind with  <Billy>. Robbie Lakeman should be the Donkey Kong news of the day but people love dirty laundry.  It looks like I picked a fun time to playing again! 
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Offline xelnia

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #38 on: February 03, 2018, 07:15:43 PM »
On that note, I am curious if any additional work will be done to review and determine if Billy has any legitimate scores higher than the 933k point game?  For example, I think that there were a series of two or three scores each by Billy and Steve which were all just under and/or just over one million points, some of which were officially submitted to TG.  I can remember some very lengthy papers written by Robert Mrukzek a long while back detailing these scores and publishing very detailed and extensive statistical breakdowns of at least one of these scores -- I want to say that it might have been a score of 1.014M points by Billy at that time?  Does footage of that game still exist somewhere?  Does Robert still have it?  Does TG have it?  Can that one be analyzed to see if it was also a MAME performance or original hardware?  I think that it would be nice to make sure that the "most correct" score is listed for Billy in the scoreboard.


Billy did submit a 1.014M game to TG in 2004, in response to Wiebe's 1.006M submission. Billy withdrew the submission once TG opted to reject Wiebe's 1.006M. Robert Mruczek goes into detail about it here. While he doesn't mention it in that post, RTM has stated elsewhere that he no longer has any footage of that game...something about the VCR eating the tape. As far as I'm aware, no other taped submissions by Billy exist. The 933k is the only other TG-verified modern score. That score is also higher, I believe, than any of his Kong Off scores. There is a claimed high-900k score witnessed by Joel West, but no other corroborating evidence.
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Offline f_symbols

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #39 on: February 03, 2018, 07:32:59 PM »
Didn't Billy put up a score greater than 933k on day 1 of a recent Kong Off?  I thought I remembered seeing the story at http://donkeykongblog.blogspot.com, but don't find it now.  I remember the picture showed Billy standing on top of two Donkey Kong machines, fists raised in victory...



https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10154125955218378&set=pb.620523377.-2207520000.1517714775

 and

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10154125954008378&set=pb.620523377.-2207520000.1517714775

I remembered seeing what you said as well, turns out it was a 930K
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Offline ChrisP

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #40 on: February 04, 2018, 03:19:21 AM »
(Adds nothing to the discussion, but just so that Chris G. will know that his memory isn't wonky, here is the post:
http://donkeykongblog.blogspot.com//2015/07/the-kong-off-4-is-here.html)

That 930 was during the pre-tourney practice session.

IMO, Billy's actual PB is almost certainly quite a bit higher than the 933, because we know that he was at the very least working on getting 1M when Wiebe came onto the scene. So if he didn't do it, he probably came close.

I have always been shocked that the first tape was accepted at all. Wiebe's performances were audited to the umpteenth degree, requiring a full accounting of the hardware, etc., only to meet with rejection after rejection on technical grounds. Meanwhile Billy was able to submit audio-less performances (MAME audio would have been a drop-dead giveaway, especially in that era), with no onscreen visual of the player or the cabinet, while utilizing a totally unknown and unprecedented method of video capture. Much is made about how "unfair" the King of Kong was in its depiction of Twin Galaxies, but over the years I've come to see that while many of the details were off-kilter or omitted, the overall situation was actually quite accurately portrayed. Wiebe had the book thrown at him, while Mitchell was held to virtually no standards at all.

The easy acceptance of that first tape is what opened the door wide open for the second two submissions. However, again, I consider the latter two games to essentially be PR moves that Billy made as much for the sake of the Twin Galaxies brand as his own. These were not claims on a record that he still genuinely wanted to hold. Given that he knew his performance would not come under any real scrutiny from the referees, Billy had carte blanche to manufacture pretty much whatever score he wanted. He very deliberately chose not to though, opting instead to beat Steve/Hank's scores by only 1,100 points in each case before killing the games off.

The message I read from those submissions is something along the lines of "I'm just doing something for the press here, and I don't have the time or the desire anymore to do it straight up. I WANT you to take this record back and go for 1.1."

Obviously not the most ethically-pure move, but we've all seen much worse.
http://donkeykongblog.blogspot.com

4 Quarters :-* - 800K Avg. Per Qtr. :o - No Restarts 8) - No Proof :'(

7/26/2013   Coin 35,946   710,800   18-1
7/28/2013   Coin 35,947   903,700   22-1
8/16/2013   Coin 35,948   694,100   17-6
8/17/2013   Coin 35,949   893,100   22-1

3,201,700: the $1 World Record?
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Offline serphintizer

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #41 on: February 04, 2018, 06:49:12 AM »
All this "Billy did it for the greater good!" is some of the ROFL twaddle I have read in a long time.

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Offline Josephjo

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #42 on: February 04, 2018, 10:29:40 AM »
All this "Billy did it for the greater good!" is some of the ROFL twaddle I have read in a long time.

Thank you Serphy for restoring my faith a little.

I was beginning to think I was going mad.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2018, 11:41:35 AM by Josephjo »
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Offline Xermon54

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #43 on: February 04, 2018, 10:31:55 AM »
I don't really have much important information to add, but I'd like to speak about a conversation I had with Billy few years ago.

At one Kong Off, I asked Billy:"Tell me Billy, what is your real DK highscore?"
And he answered:"Why does everybody keep asking me that *laughing*. To be honest, my real highscore is higher than Hank Chien but lower than Robbie Lakeman"

At the time, Robbie had a 1,15m highscore (around that).

Personally, I totally believe Billy told me the truth when he told me that. I have a decent friendship with Billy, and the way he told me that seemed very honest. Obviously, he didn't tell me that it was on mame with savestates, which is obvious that it's the case lol. That being said, Billy probably have a real full game with a 1.14m pb somewhere.

That being said, why would Billy tell me he precisely that he has a pb higher than hank but lower than robbie? It could be that Billy had prepared a game beating Hank's 1,138m by 1,100 points, but giving up when Robbie beat it. (I don't know I'm just guessing).

That's all I wanted to add lol. If that's the case, it would be kindda funny Billy would have tried to send a tape beating Hank's 1,138m.




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Offline Josephjo

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Re: Billy Mitchell's Direct Feed Recordings are MAME Generated
« Reply #44 on: February 04, 2018, 11:40:38 AM »
I don't really have much important information to add, but I'd like to speak about a conversation I had with Billy few years ago.

At one Kong Off, I asked Billy:"Tell me Billy, what is your real DK highscore?"
And he answered:"Why does everybody keep asking me that *laughing*. To be honest, my real highscore is higher than Hank Chien but lower than Robbie Lakeman"

At the time, Robbie had a 1,15m highscore (around that).

Personally, I totally believe Billy told me the truth when he told me that. I have a decent friendship with Billy, and the way he told me that seemed very honest. Obviously, he didn't tell me that it was on mame with savestates, which is obvious that it's the case lol. That being said, Billy probably have a real full game with a 1.14m pb somewhere.

That being said, why would Billy tell me he precisely that he has a pb higher than hank but lower than robbie? It could be that Billy had prepared a game beating Hank's 1,138m by 1,100 points, but giving up when Robbie beat it. (I don't know I'm just guessing).

That's all I wanted to add lol. If that's the case, it would be kindda funny Billy would have tried to send a tape beating Hank's 1,138m.

I personally think that he did plan to keep up using his save state method but the top players eventually made it impossible for him to do so.

 
" Its not how you play the game but who you have backing up the bullshit."

From The Book Of Sczerby 2:18