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 Post subject: Thunder Cross & Thunder Cross II [Arcade/PS2]
PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2017 9:35 am 


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Joined: 24 Nov 2014
Posts: 1209
Location: Germany
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Almost forgot about this one! I'm once more sure CIT won't mind, the thread needed an update in any case, there are also some changes that should be applied/discussed. The old thread can be found here.

These two games are quite interesting regarding potential differences, I haven't quite figured everything out yet, maybe someone else can shed a bit of light on it, too.

We know for certain there are at least two versions of the first Thunder Cross out there. It is universally agreed that the original Japanese release is vastly superior to the butchered Western version. You can tell that you're playing the Western version if you start the game on the second stage instead of the first one (when you have skycrapers in the background instead of being in a cavern), have two options right off the bat and also bombs (called "Lil' Baby" for some reason or another). As far as MAME is concerned, this is called "set 2" in the builds I've tested ("thunderxa"), all the other sets (Japan, set 1, set 3) seem to be the Japanese version (usually with English font), the PS2 release also contains that version.

I'm currently unsure what the "New Version" of this game might be that is listed in our Hall of Records thread. Is this the same as the Western version or something else entirely? Another thing I want to mention is that at least for me (tried a few versions of MAME), Thunder Cross has a nasty tendency to freeze or produce problems with the textures, rendering it unplayable. I had more problems with "thunderxj" than with "thunderx", that might be coincidence, however. For now, I'm going to split between the Japanese version and the Western revision.



And that's it! The format should be:

Game - Version

Name - Score - Stage


Thunder Cross


Japan
Code:
    Name                 Score     Stage           
1.  Perikles           8,833,180    7-5             
2.  Ghegs              1,968,720    2-7         
3.  RFP                1,629,480    2-5
4.  elbarto            1,561,560    2-4
5.  PlasmaBlooD        1,497,180    2-4
6.  emphatic           1,358,780    2-1
7.  Nemo               1,211,240    2-3
8.  God                1,206,720    2-3
9.  CIT                  928,460    1-7
10. Adam76               682,400    1-6

DEL - 10,000,000+α   Note: unknown stage/loop, unknown version



West
Code:
    Name                 Score     Stage           
1.               
2.           
3. 



Thunder Cross II


Code:
    Name                 Score     Stage           
1.  Perikles           4,519,490    6-4
2.  CIT                  914,050    2-3
3.  elbarto              843,320    2-2
4.  maximo               313,450    1-5
5.  SG                   232,530    1-4

DEL - 12-ALL   Note: unknown score, unknown version (?)
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Last edited by Perikles on Sat Jun 10, 2017 10:39 am, edited 5 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Thunder Cross & Thunder Cross II [Arcade/PS2]
PostPosted: Thu May 25, 2017 11:22 pm 


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Joined: 24 Nov 2014
Posts: 1209
Location: Germany
Aha! I'm beginning to unravel the secret behind the bunched options in Thunder Cross II: it might not have anything to do with the player side (more investigations will be necessary to find definitive truths in this matter), you have to select autofire for the formation button (several rates work, not certain about the optimal one); you also want to have a dedicated custom button for that, the regular formation button will still be needed. I'm not able to consistently get them to do what I want to, seems like it's dependent on whether you shoot or not, which weapon you have currently selected and at which power level, how close the options are to your ship to begin with and how you currently move. When I cease fire and move slightly to the left or the right whilst holding down the autofire formation button, it works significantly better than with any other set-up. Once you managed to pull off the trick for the first time, you can toggle between spreading them out over the entire vertical length and then back into the concentrated position, once you pick up a special weapon or change the position via the regular formation button, you have to start anew with reaching that particular constellation again. What an odd mechanism. I dare say it is an oversight of sorts, but I'm almost sure it's impossible to get past certain sections on really high loops without this trick, some barriers and (mid-)bosses have obscene amounts of health even if you use autofire (for your main weapon) for massive point-blank capabilities.

If anyone knows for sure or has conjectures, please share your thoughts!
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 Post subject: Re: Thunder Cross & Thunder Cross II [Arcade/PS2]
PostPosted: Mon May 29, 2017 7:18 pm 


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Joined: 25 Jan 2005
Posts: 4103
Location: Oort Cloud
From back in the day, in the London arcades, I have this written in my High Score Book:

Thunder Cross 10.000.000+α

Thunder Cross 2 - 12 loops.

I won't mind at all if you don't include these in the rankings. No score pics and no exact score on Thunder Cross 2 was written down. I do kinda remember the 12 loop marathon though :)
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 Post subject: Re: Thunder Cross & Thunder Cross II [Arcade/PS2]
PostPosted: Tue May 30, 2017 12:08 am 


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Joined: 24 Nov 2014
Posts: 1209
Location: Germany
I would certainly add your scores! Do you happen to remember which version of the first Thunder Cross you've played (with/without bombs)? I would imagine that they also had the Japanese version with English font available, but it would be great to make sure if possible.

It's fairly likely that your Thunder Cross II run would also be a 10m counterstop, that's at least possible at that point in time. I would add it as such if you don't mind - also feel compelled to add that this is an amazing achievement, as one can see in the video above (about here), you will lose 30+ lives in a matter of a few minutes if you make a single mistake, with no way to recover at all. And considering that the bullets are Psikyo-fast, you have to deal with such a difficulty for several hours on end. Truly amazing. :o
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 Post subject: Re: Thunder Cross & Thunder Cross II [Arcade/PS2]
PostPosted: Thu Jun 08, 2017 5:23 pm 


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Joined: 24 Nov 2014
Posts: 1209
Location: Germany
Thunder Cross II

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Perikles - 4,519,490 - 6-4

Video part 1, part 2

What a spectacular run. I figured out how to use the bundled options (which is, alas, not the same as consistently being able to do so in a hurry), I'm now fairly certain the player side doesn't matter, I've removed that for the time being.

Anyway, I knew that I was able to clear five loops but I would've settled for four loops since the game becomes rather rough later on. Little did I know that I would have not one, but two stretches with some of the most exciting recoveries I've ever pulled off. The first two deaths at the end of loop 3 weren't that problematic (I was offended by the robot shooting me nonchalantly in the face nonetheless), but the arduous convalescences here and here were tense and grand. I was completely nonplussed when the sixth boss in loop 4 all of a sudden moved like that, I've never seen that happening before. I think (!) there is some weird difficulty overflow in the last two stages on higher loops, you can see that the stage is uncharacteristically easy, perhaps the boss all of a sudden resumed regular difficulty. That, I figured, would end the run. Fortunately I managed to persist.

Obviously I kept on playing, dying to the added resilience of a missile from the muffin man in loop 5. You can even see how I am toying around with the guy afterwards, I was entirely certain that it wasn't even thinkable that I could get back on my feet on what is the second-hardest stage in the game to do so, after four loops of play, no less. Needless to say, what ensued then has to be one of my favourite moments in the genre, that was epic. I knew that loop 6 wouldn't be overcome and can say that this is consequently more or less a perfect result for me. Even got a really good score out of the first loop, only 20,000 points behind my personal best.


While on the topic of Thunder Cross II and the constantly rising difficulty: what eldritch sorcery did allow you to clear 12 loops back in the day, DEL? :o If I recall correctly, you guys were playing without autofire, correct? Did you find some exploit? As you can see here, even with 30hz autofire you cannot breach the walls in stage 4 from loop 6 onwards anymore if you don't use the bundled options trick, meaning that it's utterly and truly impossible without autofire. Is there some weapon configuration that can do the trick? Or is the Western version easier on high loops, perchance?

I've added your results in the first post in the tables, below the listing. Please say something (especially regarding the version for the first game if you happen to remember) if you wish them to be displayed differently. :)
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 Post subject: Re: Thunder Cross & Thunder Cross II [Arcade/PS2]
PostPosted: Thu Jun 08, 2017 8:29 pm 


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Joined: 24 Nov 2014
Posts: 1209
Location: Germany
Thunder Cross

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Perikles - 8,833,180 - 7-5

Loops 1-3, loops 4-6

Game froze at this very moment as you can see, that would've been a 10m+ score without a doubt. :? I'll probably upload this run as well in the next few days, has a few dumb deaths and stunning recoveries, but it's mostly really solid. I'm definitely done with this one now, there's no way I'm going to get this lucky with it not hanging up on me for such a long time again. :lol:

Edit: videos are up, decided to only show the full six loops for a less humiliating end. :mrgreen:
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