I would personally recommend sticking with Snes9x or using Bizhawk for learning to TAS. Both are more user-friendly than lsnes, with Bizhawk having a few more useful tools (but also being less user-friendly and more performance-intensive than Snes9x).
Anyway, the first thing you should do is get acquainted with the tools you're given; knowing what you can do will make things a lot easier.
Frame advance is, of course, the most basic, and one you should get comfortable with using.
Lua scripts can also be useful, particularly this one
, which can display a lot of information you can't normally see in-game. As an alternative, you can also use a RAM watch (another tool).
Macros (Snes9x only) are another useful tool that allow you to repeat a sequence of button presses automatically (for doing 6/5
, for instance). Unfortunately, Bizhawk/lsnes don't support this without writing a lua script
TAStudio (Bizhawk only) is also an interesting tool that lets you record and edit an input movie at the same time, and serves as an alternative to the savestate-loadstate style TASing normally involves. I recommend trying it at least once to see if you're more comfortable with it; it's easier to show than explain.
Second thing you should probably do, of course, is get to know SMW itself. Knowing what you can
do is pretty important in designing difficult levels and figuring out strategies for other people's levels. I'd recommend skimming through TASVideo's game resources page
for a brief introduction to tricks if you haven't already, and trying an easier pit hack or two to get the feel for it (don't need to be too serious about it, just focus on getting through the hack first before trying to optimize anything). If you use Discord, you could also join the SMW speedrunning Discord
for help since a lot of TASers tend to be there.
Professional frame-by-frame time wizard. YouTube
- SMW Glitch List
- SMW Randomizer