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PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2005 8:13 pm 



Joined: 12 Mar 2005
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Icarus wrote:
And if anything, Gain should have the lowest rank increase of all ships, due to the characterists of its Shot (never more than a four way normally, or a double threeway at special sixth) and it's Options (the Buster Sword is really slow firing).


Actually, if you look at the sprites in service mode, you'll see that Gain's swords consist of four separate sprites, so I wouldn't be surprised if each sword counts as four Option bullets for rank purposes.

Also, the pairs of close parallel bullets the ships fire at higher powerup levels are treated as one bullet by the game; notice that both disappear at once when one strikes a target (you may have to single-frame-step in MAME to verify this). To know how many bullets your ship is really firing for rank purposes, count the muzzle flashes.

Quote:
I haven't messed with the dipswitches since Tomtom's "Max Rank Challenge", where all I did was turn difficulty back down to medium. I'm puzzled as to how I activated it.


Pressing F2 enters a machine's service mode in MAME. You might have pressed it by accident while reaching for F3 (reset). In some machines (e.g. CPS1, CPS2, Dodonpachi) the service mode switch is a pushbutton, but in others (including Battle Garegga) it's a toggle switch; once you toggle it the machine will always come up in service mode until you toggle it again.


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PostPosted: Sun Aug 14, 2005 11:18 pm 


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AWJ wrote:
Actually, if you look at the sprites in service mode, you'll see that Gain's swords consist of four separate sprites, so I wouldn't be surprised if each sword counts as four Option bullets for rank purposes.

Also, the pairs of close parallel bullets the ships fire at higher powerup levels are treated as one bullet by the game; notice that both disappear at once when one strikes a target (you may have to single-frame-step in MAME to verify this). To know how many bullets your ship is really firing for rank purposes, count the muzzle flashes.


Sprite-wise a Buster Sword may be made up of many parts, but rank-wise they are treated as a single entity. So for example, if Gain was at it's maximum special Shot power (double threeway) and had four Options, it'd be firing ten seperate bullets each time. In rank calculation terms:

(Shot, at 1pt per bullet x 6) + (Option, at 2pts per bullet x 4) = 14pts each time

Now, compare that with a rank-controlled powerup strategy, where you'd want to keep your Shot level at a low enough level to keep the rank increase down, but high enough to give enough Shot strength to progress safely. Say, for example, a lvl4 Shot (wide threeway) and one Option:

(Shot x 3) + 1 = 4pts each time

See the difference a good powerup strategy can make? :)

The twin streams in the center of Gain's Shot may act like one sprite, but they are still treated as two seperate bullets in rank calculation terms.

Vorpal wrote:
The only thing different I noticed that didn't happen in my medium difficulty games is, in the later stages (4 and 5), enemies stopped "turtling" as you call it. Most noticeably the small bullet-yielding turrets on the boats in Stage 5. Their failure to turtle resulted in 3 lost credits, heh.


That's one of the features of the rank system at higher levels: the higher the rank is, the closer you have to be to make specific enemies and turrets turtle.

I wouldn't rely on making things go into hiding too much in later levels, it's better just to destroy them ;)
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 1:01 am 



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Icarus wrote:
Sprite-wise a Buster Sword may be made up of many parts, but rank-wise they are treated as a single entity. So for example, if Gain was at it's maximum special Shot power (double threeway) and had four Options, it'd be firing ten seperate bullets each time.

The twin streams in the center of Gain's Shot may act like one sprite, but they are still treated as two seperate bullets in rank calculation terms.


Have you verified these statements with the aid of, say, MAME memory watchpoints? As far as I can tell, all of the numeric information on rank in your ST is copied and pasted directly from a Japanese webpage, a page which contains a disclaimer that the numbers provided are nothing but conjecture.

Being a fan of certain RPG series which have far smaller fandoms in the West than in Japan, I'm quite familiar with the phenomenon of guesswork and rumors taken from some Japanese site being presented breathlessly as gospel by the first gaijin who happened to come across it and managed to translate it...


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 9:49 am 



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Ehr, Among other things, there should be a cheat in MAME which allows you to see rank progression. Beside that, a quick experiment can be made with Gain's options and fire, and see when the bullets start going faster (without resetting rank with deaths). Bullets start going faster (second rank level) as if the daggers count as one bullet each (i.e. two rank points increase). If they counted as 4 (and thus 4x2= 8 rank points each), the increase would be much faster. Say, (8*4)+6 (double three-way) at frequency 3=118 rank points per second.rank two would be triggered roughly after 2 minutes or, after the first stage.

Beside that, rank info on Garegga should be "official", in the sense that it stems from various confirmed (by the programmers) knowledge acquired during the competition (back in 1996). However, if you can actually find some more specific datas directly from the test mode, that would rock :wink:
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 2:42 pm 


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From MAME's cheat.dat:

Quote:
; [ Battle Garegga (Europe / USA / Japan / Asia) (Sat Feb 3 1996) ]
battlega:0:10C9D3:00:998:Watch Game Rank


I'll let you do the experimenting, AWJ, since I don't play Garegga in MAME, and I have a score target to meet ;)

AWJ wrote:
Being a fan of certain RPG series which have far smaller fandoms in the West than in Japan, I'm quite familiar with the phenomenon of guesswork and rumors taken from some Japanese site being presented breathlessly as gospel by the first gaijin who happened to come across it and managed to translate it...


My sources for the guide regarding strategy are compiled from official data released by Raizing, as well as seven years of personal experience with the game. Numeric data can be disputed back and forth, but it only takes a few games to see the difference between a no powerup game vs a maximum rank game.

Oh, and FYI, I don't like being called a gaijin. I'm British born Vietnamese, and just like some Japanese would hate to be called "Japs", being called a gaijin is just as offensive to me as being called a "chink". Understood?
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 5:42 pm 



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Icarus wrote:
Numeric data can be disputed back and forth, but it only takes a few games to see the difference between a no powerup game vs a maximum rank game.


I didn't question that fact, I only questioned two specific details (dual bullets that come from one muzzle flash and function as a single entity, and Gain's option shots)

Quote:
Oh, and FYI, I don't like being called a gaijin. I'm British born Vietnamese, and just like some Japanese would hate to be called "Japs", being called a gaijin is just as offensive to me as being called a "chink". Understood?


I'm sorry for offending you. I didn't mean it that way. I'm not Japanese myself--I'm quarter-Scot, quarter-Welsh and half-WASP Canadian. Where I come from "gaijin" is used self-mockingly to describe we Westerners' supposed inability to fully appreciate the subtleties of Japanese games however much we love them. Are you familiar with expressions like "gaijin protection", referring to things like option menus in import games that are inordinately frustrating for the non-Japanese-literate to navigate?

Randorama wrote:
Beside that, a quick experiment can be made with Gain's options and fire, and see when the bullets start going faster (without resetting rank with deaths). Bullets start going faster (second rank level) as if the daggers count as one bullet each (i.e. two rank points increase). If they counted as 4 (and thus 4x2= 8 rank points each), the increase would be much faster. Say, (8*4)+6 (double three-way) at frequency 3=118 rank points per second.rank two would be triggered roughly after 2 minutes or, after the first stage.


You're forgetting that Gain's swords have a much lower rate of fire than regular option bullets, since only one sword per option can be onscreen at once. If Gain's swords really counted as one bullet each, he'd gain rank much more slowly than any other character when playing "normally" (i.e. not deliberately manipulating rank).

Quote:
Beside that, rank info on Garegga should be "official", in the sense that it stems from various confirmed (by the programmers) knowledge acquired during the competition (back in 1996). However, if you can actually find some more specific datas directly from the test mode, that would rock


According to the "Handbook" website, the general mechanics of the system (each bullet you fire increases rank, powerups cause rank to rise faster, etc.) are officially confirmed, but the exact numbers used in the examples on the site are only guesswork.

As it happens, I've just been doing some experimentation using MAME's cheat functions (many thanks to Icarus for providing that watchpoint to get me started) and I've discovered some surprising facts. Would it be appreciated if I shared my findings here? I know that some players dislike using information obtained by directly analyzing a game's programming--they feel it "spoils" the game or is disrespectful to the developers somehow.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 7:00 pm 


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AWJ wrote:
As it happens, I've just been doing some experimentation using MAME's cheat functions (many thanks to Icarus for providing that watchpoint to get me started) and I've discovered some surprising facts. Would it be appreciated if I shared my findings here? I know that some players dislike using information obtained by directly analyzing a game's programming--they feel it "spoils" the game or is disrespectful to the developers somehow.

Considering the absolute slew of information required to understand exactly how Garegga works, and how relatively little "concrete" stuff is available, I can't say that I'd mind, myself...heck, if others would rather you not post your findings on this thread, PM 'em to me, I'd like to see what you've found out.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 8:00 pm 



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AWJ wrote:
Icarus wrote:
Numeric data can be disputed back and forth, but it only takes a few games to see the difference between a no powerup game vs a maximum rank game.


I didn't question that fact, I only questioned two specific details (dual bullets that come from one muzzle flash and function as a single entity, and Gain's option shots)

Quote:
Oh, and FYI, I don't like being called a gaijin. I'm British born Vietnamese, and just like some Japanese would hate to be called "Japs", being called a gaijin is just as offensive to me as being called a "chink". Understood?


I'm sorry for offending you. I didn't mean it that way. I'm not Japanese myself--I'm quarter-Scot, quarter-Welsh and half-WASP Canadian. Where I come from "gaijin" is used self-mockingly to describe we Westerners' supposed inability to fully appreciate the subtleties of Japanese games however much we love them. Are you familiar with expressions like "gaijin protection", referring to things like option menus in import games that are inordinately frustrating for the non-Japanese-literate to navigate?

Randorama wrote:
Beside that, a quick experiment can be made with Gain's options and fire, and see when the bullets start going faster (without resetting rank with deaths). Bullets start going faster (second rank level) as if the daggers count as one bullet each (i.e. two rank points increase). If they counted as 4 (and thus 4x2= 8 rank points each), the increase would be much faster. Say, (8*4)+6 (double three-way) at frequency 3=118 rank points per second.rank two would be triggered roughly after 2 minutes or, after the first stage.


You're forgetting that Gain's swords have a much lower rate of fire than regular option bullets, since only one sword per option can be onscreen at once. If Gain's swords really counted as one bullet each, he'd gain rank much more slowly than any other character when playing "normally" (i.e. not deliberately manipulating rank).



Yes, in fact i have just checked and the frequency is roughly 1:3 (one sword every three main shots). However, rank is somewhat slower with Gain, as i roughly hit the second level of rank later than with Wild Snail. A maxed-out configuration with Wild Snail (two piercings, four options, two normal shots=3*2+2*4+1*2=16) at maximum frequence ( 8 ) gives me the second level of rank roughly after 2 minutes (it's 80 secs if you can start with such a configuration, of course you need some time to fully power-up). With Gain, the same configuration was triggered roughly after 3 minutes (and it's worth: 6 normal shots+(four swords/3)=1*6+(x*4)3, all per 8 of frequency).

Assuming that the swords do 2 points per sword, you get roughly 72 points per second, and thus the 3 minutes would more or less make sense.However, issues like bullet nullification, and the time needed to fully power up will surely have an influence...

If you can find out the exact value, i'm thankful, no worries to spoil the game!
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2005 11:08 pm 


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AWJ wrote:
I'm sorry for offending you. I didn't mean it that way.


Don't worry about it. The term gaijin just winds me up something rotten :?

AWJ wrote:
You're forgetting that Gain's swords have a much lower rate of fire than regular option bullets, since only one sword per option can be onscreen at once. If Gain's swords really counted as one bullet each, he'd gain rank much more slowly than any other character when playing "normally" (i.e. not deliberately manipulating rank).


That's why I stated that Gain has potentially the slowest rank increase of all characters due to the slow firing Options. While most other ships have Options that fire almost the same speeds as the main ship, Gain's seem to do the Space Invaders thing - one bullet on screen at any one time.

Quite handy if you're just playing through, but it takes a lot to try and purposely increase rank.

If anything, it's a wonder how Bornnam doesn't send rank skyrocketing with his rapidfire Options...

AWJ wrote:
According to the "Handbook" website, the general mechanics of the system (each bullet you fire increases rank, powerups cause rank to rise faster, etc.) are officially confirmed, but the exact numbers used in the examples on the site are only guesswork.


Guesswork or not, at least it gives us an idea of how to quantify all the factors that increase rank. From experience and observation it's easy to tell that having a lot of Options throughout the game will pump up the rank a lot faster than having one or none at all, so they must have a larger factor in the rank increase than the Shot, for example.

Having numbers to work with just helps in building a powerup strategy.

AWJ wrote:
As it happens, I've just been doing some experimentation using MAME's cheat functions (many thanks to Icarus for providing that watchpoint to get me started) and I've discovered some surprising facts. Would it be appreciated if I shared my findings here? I know that some players dislike using information obtained by directly analyzing a game's programming--they feel it "spoils" the game or is disrespectful to the developers somehow.


By all means, please feel free to. I myself am very interested in hard numerical data with regards to rank, and also anything else relating to the rank system.

Anything you want to post up will be much appreciated :)
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2005 1:50 am 


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For shits and giggles I had a bit of fun playing as Chitta (to take a break from Bornnam, feeling a little burned out). Man, is she difficult to play as.

Not only is her Shot very narrow, even at high power, but her Shot seems to be a lot weaker than others. The only way to get any kind of range with her is to power up to maximum and even then, it's not as wide ranging as Gain at lvl4 Shot strength.

It also makes powerup strategy a lot more difficult to plan, as she has twinshot up until lvl3 power, when it suddenly switches to fourway. There's no inbetween, so you're either at lv2 shot (more powerful twinshot) or lv5 Shot (wide fourway), if you want either rank controlled play or attack power.

Those Options are annoying :? It's even making attacking the side propellors of Nose Lavagghin a chore. If anything, I have to attack from below now, and completely ignore the central propellor.

Her Weapon is also the slowest to activate (takes at least two seconds to wind up) and it's also one of the quickest to burn, almost two seconds at full Weapon power. You were right, Rando, Jinn the Mountain's hit area isn't circular or square like Bornnam or Gain, but it's actually the shape of Jinn himself that's the hit area. The only plus is that Jinn fires all those fireballs around the screen when he's active, clearing the screen of dangerous stuff. To actually score well with this Weapon, you have to drop it well in advance, and hope you don't run into anything while it's winding up :?

It's a wonder how they even break 8mil with this one, let alone 16mil. After a few credits I could only manage 3.2mil up to Satanic Surfer. Trying for the birds is even worse. You have to drop Jinn really early to try and cluster all the birds together. I could only manage 500k, even after 3 and a half full Weapons :?

Gonna have another go. She is interesting, but if anything, it's better to learn Flying Baron ;)
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2005 4:45 am 



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Here's what I've figured out so far concerning rank:

Current rank is stored in a doubleword (32 bits) at 10C9D2; the highest byte is always zero, so the address Icarus provided of 10C9D3 is the most significant byte that's actually meaningful.

* Note that Battle Garegga's 68000 CPU is "big-endian"; numbers are not stored "backwards" in memory like they are on PCs, XBoxen, Sony consoles, and such devices which readers may already be familiar with hacking cheats on.

The rank variable starts at a high value (F00000, or 15728640 in decimal) and counts down; the lower it goes, the higher the game difficulty. The first thing I noticed upon watching the rank value is that it continuously decreases every video frame even when nothing is happening. In other words, there's a simple "survival time" component to rank; even if you don't shoot, collect, or do anything rank will steadily increase.

At the beginning of a new game, the rate at which rank increases (technically decreases) is 22 per frame (approximately 1320 per second). After playing for a while, this rate tends to increase. Using cheat search I was easily able to find the variable storing the per-frame rank increase: It's a single byte at 10C9D9. By watching this value while playing the game, I could determine which actions cause the rank-per-frame rate to increase. The results were surprising and will probably cause some players here to rethink their strategies.

I've discovered two things which increase rank-per-frame. One of them is powering up the main shot. Collecting a small shot icon that actually causes a level up increases rank-per-frame by 1. Collecting a large shot icon, however, does not increase rank-per-frame. Since small shot icons are the primary means of actually powering up while large shot icons are mainly used to recover your old shot level after dying, I guess this makes sense in a way.

The other thing that causes rank-per-frame to increase is reprogramming your autofire rate. By careful observation in single-frame-step mode (hold shift and press the MAME pause key) I figured out exactly how autofire programming works. The default autofire rate is one shot every 7 frames, or ~8.6 shots per second. If you tap the shot button twice in a shorter span than the current autofire rate, the autofire rate increases correspondingly. For example if you tap the shot button, release it, and tap it again 5 frames later, your autofire rate will be reprogrammed to one shot per 5 frames. It looks like you can only increase the autofire rate; I couldn't find any way to decrease it again (unlike Batrider, dying does not reset it to the default).

Anyway, increasing your autofire rate from the default resets the rank-per-frame rate to a new, higher value, as follows:
Code:
Rate of fire | Rank per frame
-------------+---------------
1/6 frames   | 22 (no change)
1/5          | 33
1/4          | 44
1/3          | 66
1/2          | 88

It looks like the new rank-per-frame rate is set to these exact values regardless of any previous increases. For example if you power up twice via small shot icons, increasing the rank-per-frame to 24, and then reprogram your autofire rate to 1/5 frames, your rank-per-frame becomes 33 (not 35). On the other hand, if you reprogram your autofire to 1/5 and then power up twice, your rank-per-frame will become 35.

Due to the rank-per-frame mechanic, using rapid fire as a substitute for shot powerups in the early stages of the game appears to be a spectacularly bad strategy for rank control. You can suicide to lose shot powerups, but once you increase the autofire rate, you're stuck with it and with your higher rank-per-frame rate for good.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2005 4:11 pm 


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Awesome, good stuff. While I had a feeling that survival time played a part in rank increase (and thus the need to suicide) I wasn't aware that rank increased on a per-frame basis. Interesting findings, you don't mind if I add this to the guide?

Also, have you found out anything relating to attack usage and it's effects on rank?
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2005 5:02 pm 


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If you hear a whirring sound from wherever you are just ignore it, that's just my head spinning...uggh.
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2005 6:07 am 



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Icarus wrote:
Awesome, good stuff. While I had a feeling that survival time played a part in rank increase (and thus the need to suicide) I wasn't aware that rank increased on a per-frame basis.


Well, if survival time is meant to affect rank, or anything in the game, then perforce there must be a time counter. The only surprising thing is that the speed of the counter is affected by the player's actions.

I've discovered that the base rank-per-frame rate is actually determined by the region and the difficulty dipswitch setting. The value I gave of 22 is for a Japan PCB at "Normal" difficulty. Here's a complete chart:
Code:
Region | Easy |Normal| Hard |Very Hard
-------+------+------+------+---------
Japan  |  16  |  22  |  28  |  36
Asia   |  19  |  25  |  32  |  40
Europe |  16  |  24  |  32  |  48
USA    |  16  |  32  |  48  |  64

Regardless of the region, the rank-per-frame rate always increases by 1 when you power up the shot with small shot icons, and increases to 1.5x, 2x, 3x or 4x the base value when you increase your autofire rate. So on a US board on "Very Hard", rank-per-frame can become as high as 256 if you increase your autofire rate all the way to the maximum.

The difficulty setting also determines the minimum value rank will reach before it stops decreasing (remember that rank counts down):
Code:
Setting   Minimum Rank
--------+-------------------
Easy    | 4194304 (0x400000)
Normal  | 2097152 (0x200000)
Hard    | 1048576 (0x100000)
V.Hard  |  524288 (0x80000)

The difficulty setting probably interacts with the rank system in other ways (a whole bunch of memory addresses change when you change the difficulty) but I haven't figured them out yet.

The initial rank value when you start the game is a bit weird, and I haven't exhaustively investigated it. First of all, although it does not vary with the difficulty setting, it does vary by region. On a Japan board, the first time you start a game after poweron, rank starts at 15728640 (0xF00000). This is the weird part: on each successive game, the starting rank becomes slightly lower. The upshot is that the game very gradually becomes more and more difficult the more times it is played before being reset. The amount by which starting rank decreases per game varies by region, and probably by difficulty setting (it might even depend on how well the player did). I'm not sure where or whether it eventually stops--if you played thousands of games without resetting the board, would the game eventually start on full rank?

Having worked out per-frame "survival rank" to my satisfaction, the next step was to disable it in order to observe other changes to rank more easily. I created a cheat forcing the rank-per-frame to 0 and played the game with this cheat activated and with a watchpoint on rank.

Few surprises here--firing shots, destroying enemies, cancelling bullets (e.g. by flying into them while invulnerable) and collecting items all directly increase rank by various amounts, while dying decreases rank by a large amount. Merely striking enemies with shots does not increase rank until you destroy the enemy or one of its parts. Contrary to speculation that "every button you press increases rank in some way", moving your ship or rearranging your options does not increase rank.

The first rank effect I analyzed in detail was the rank for firing shots, since that has been the subject of contention recently. Each time you fire, rank increases by 20 plus the sum of the values of the shots you fired:
Code:
Main shot
  Normal         20
  Piercing       80
Option shot
  Garegga ships  20
  Gain          240
  Chitta         20
  Miyamoto       60
  Bornnam        20

Double bullets from a single muzzle flash seem to count as one bullet. The Flying Baron at shot level 2, firing two double bullets, gains 60 rank per shot, not 100. At some point I'll work out and post the exact rank-per-shot for each ship at each level so players can see what the most "rank-efficient" powerup levels are (i.e. the highest level before an increase in rank-per-shot)

Miyamoto's option shots seem to be analagous to piercing shots, since the explosion persists and can damage multiple targets or a damage a single target more than once. Each of Gain's swords seems to consist of four "piercing option shots". Notice that Gain's rank per option shot is four times Miyamoto's, and that while most ships can have four option bullets onscreen at a time per Option, Gain can only have one per Option.

I wonder--do Gain's and Miyamoto's option shots count as piercing shots for targets that score differently when destroyed by piercing as opposed to normal shots? I can't play either of these characters even semi-competently (they're much too fast for me) so I don't know...

Oh yeah, the "base" 20 rank for firing a round of shots is gained even if you "dry fire" by attempting to fire when the screen holds as many bullets as you're allowed to have (8 main shots per gun, 4 option shots per Option) For example, if you increase the autofire rate to 1/2 frames and hold the fire button, you'll fire 4 times in the first 8 frames and gain rank as usual for your ship's shot pattern and Options. In the next 8 frames you'll fire 4 times with the main shot only (since you already have 4 option bullets per option onscreen) and gain rank correspondingly. After that, if you continue to hold the button, you'll continue to gain 20 rank every second frame until some of your shots leave the screen and you actually start firing again.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2005 3:55 am 



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Icarus, feel free to add any of this information to the ST. Sorry I forgot to answer your question before.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 20, 2005 9:59 am 



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Thanks for the many useful informations AWJ :wink:

some notes: ok, survival time doesn't surprise me at all, as it's the general concept behind rank.Also, rank is expected to be a sort of twin parameter with difficulty, as it always represents an increase of difficulty based on performance.In practice, i'd advice you to check out what functions of rank are influenced by difficulty change (but i suppose i'm being a bit redoudant).

About shot frequency: this is interesting, as there is a long story of shmups with increasing difficulties based on autofire detection.For instance, Twin Eagle will switch to "very hard" if autofire (only an hack can grant this effect) is detected, other games work in the same way or have various Easter eggs.

Also, rank increase (decrease, actually) per every single play is not a new thing,too. The basic idea is that the game becomes harder because players can see what precedent players have done, so to speak.

Other things: Is there any rank effect for bullet nullification (i.e. cancelling bullets with bombs? Is there any rank effect for missing medals? How dying affects rank?
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 21, 2005 11:38 pm 


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Randorama wrote:
Also, rank increase (decrease, actually) per every single play is not a new thing,too. The basic idea is that the game becomes harder because players can see what precedent players have done, so to speak.


I think you can reset the rank as well, just like you can reset the dropped item order. On MAME/PCBs you restart the board, while on the Saturn you open the Options screen.

AWJ wrote:
...while dying decreases rank by a large amount...


If you don't mind me asking, have you worked out the exact amount that rank is decreased on dying? I think it is speculated that:

  • Dying with three in stock = rank down to 1/2 of current amount
  • Dying with two in stock = rank down to 1/4 of current amount
  • Dying with one in stock = rank down to 1/8 of current amount
Thanks for your efforts. The numerical data you've so far provided is of great interest, and looking forward to any more info you can provide.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2005 1:27 am 



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Randorama wrote:
Also, rank increase (decrease, actually) per every single play is not a new thing,too. The basic idea is that the game becomes harder because players can see what precedent players have done, so to speak.


I thought some Capcom fighting games had a feature like this as an option (refered to as "self regulation" in the service menu) but I'd never heard of it in a shmup. But I've never looked "under the hood" of a shmup until now, so perhaps it isn't unusual.

I think I already mentioned that cancelling bullets increases rank. Each cancelled bullet increases rank by a substantial amount (like picking up an item, not like firing a shot), so milking bosses will cause rank to skyrocket.

Icarus wrote:
If you don't mind me asking, have you worked out the exact amount that rank is decreased on dying? I think it is speculated that:

  • Dying with three in stock = rank down to 1/2 of current amount
  • Dying with two in stock = rank down to 1/4 of current amount
  • Dying with one in stock = rank down to 1/8 of current amount
Thanks for your efforts. The numerical data you've so far provided is of great interest, and looking forward to any more info you can provide.


I haven't completely worked it out yet. It's affected by several factors, including the number of lives you have left. It does not seem to be based on a proportion of the current rank: if you die early in the game, before rank increases much, rank will be reset all the way to its initial value.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2005 1:47 am 


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AWJ wrote:
I haven't completely worked it out yet. It's affected by several factors, including the number of lives you have left. It does not seem to be based on a proportion of the current rank: if you die early in the game, before rank increases much, rank will be reset all the way to its initial value.


If it doesn't seem like it's proportional to the Extend stock, then maybe dying takes off a certain amount? Lately I've been managing to almost stick to my strategy for Bornnam, and several times when I get to Black Heart, I've had roughly four support fighters appear. However, if I deviate just a bit from the strategy - such as dying accidentally, or not having enough points to get a required Extend, for example - then I end up with five support fighters instead.

AWJ wrote:
I think I already mentioned that cancelling bullets increases rank. Each cancelled bullet increases rank by a substantial amount (like picking up an item, not like firing a shot), so milking bosses will cause rank to skyrocket.


Are you certain that is correct? When you milk bosses, you're not actually cancelling bullets, but just firing round after round of Shot and Option. You only tend to cancel bullets when you shoot at destructible bullets, use Weapon to attack, or die (shrapnel clears the screen of bullets).
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2005 2:07 am 



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Icarus wrote:
AWJ wrote:
I haven't completely worked it out yet. It's affected by several factors, including the number of lives you have left. It does not seem to be based on a proportion of the current rank: if you die early in the game, before rank increases much, rank will be reset all the way to its initial value.


If it doesn't seem like it's proportional to the Extend stock, then maybe dying takes off a certain amount?


I think you misunderstood. Dying reduces rank by an amount which is dependent on your stock, among other factors (e.g. board region and dipswitch settings). It just doesn't seem to be proportional to the current value of rank.

Quote:
Are you certain that is correct? When you milk bosses, you're not actually cancelling bullets, but just firing round after round of Shot and Option. You only tend to cancel bullets when you shoot at destructible bullets, use Weapon to attack, or die (shrapnel clears the screen of bullets).


Sorry, I specifically meant milking bosses' shots using area-bomb Weapons. Destroying bosses part-by-part doesn't quite count as "milking" to me.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2005 2:15 am 


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AWJ wrote:
I think you misunderstood. Dying reduces rank by an amount which is dependent on your stock, among other factors (e.g. board region and dipswitch settings). It just doesn't seem to be proportional to the current value of rank.


Ahh, gotcha. Must have misread your comment :oops:

AWJ wrote:
Sorry, I specifically meant milking bosses' shots using area-bomb Weapons. Destroying bosses part-by-part doesn't quite count as "milking" to me.


There's only boss I know of where you use area bomb Weapons to milk points, and that's on Black Heart2's grenade attack. Even then, only a few characters can milk that attack effectively.

I guess the grenades can count as bullets with regards to rank. But when you get to that point in the game, rank becomes irrelevant. In fact, you often want rank at it's highest possible, since Black Heart2 fires more grenades the higher the rank is.

In every other case, you don't usually use Weapon to milk points off the bullets bosses fire, since IIRC, you don't get any points for cancelling indestructible bullets.
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forgive me if this has already been asked, but as far as partial Weapon usage. is this dependent on having a partial bomb in stock or something to do with how long (or hard) the Weapon button is pressed? for example: if i have 25 small bomb items can i split that into multiple Weapon bursts?

thanks. new player, can't wait to get into the trenches.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2005 7:40 pm 


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Using a "partial weapon" means that you use a bomb which isn't "fully formed" yet; in otherwords, if you've collected less than the 40 small bomb units needed to make a "full" bomb, you can still use them by pressing the bomb button, but the bomb effect will be weaker than normal. You can't split a "partial bomb" into smaller parts though; whenever you hit the bomb button either a full bomb or every fraction of a bomb which you have will be used up. Basically, you can only use a "partial" bomb if you have no "full" bombs in stock; doing so knocks you down to square one on the bomb front. The length of time the button is pressed doesn't affect anything along those lines.
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yeah, thanks. just watched a vid of Factory and it makes sense now. didn't notice him swooping into the enemies to collect a few icons before bombing the bridge again for medals. thanks.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 22, 2005 10:54 pm 


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Be warned though, using the partial Weapon strategy for scoring makes it harder to survive, since you have no Weapon bullets to use as panic bombs. If you are just starting out, it would be wiser to stock up a couple of full Weapons for use whenever you need, and only attempt Weapon-based scoring techniques (such as the railtrack at the start of stage 3) when you are comfortable with your stage strategies.

Those replays demonstrate more difficult tricks, so take what you need from the guide to start out, and concentrate on survival with a bit of scoring here and there. Gradually work in more tricks and methods that you feel comfortable with.

Good luck, cap'n ^_^ The game will appear daunting to start but you can quickly make progress if you play with an open mind. Don't hesitate to ask if you need help (I hang around this strat forum a lot ;))
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thanks for the kind words, icarus. i'm not looking to swamp myself in advanced techniques, just trying to get an understanding so i can seamlessly try and intergrate them when i get to that level. my only exposure to the game so far is the demo in Souky, and i have been playing it a lot in anticipation of the game's arrival. just cracked 4 mil the other day (i've been bombing the rail bridges though, since i don't have to worry about scoring past stage one).

thanks a bunch icarus. your guide is incredible. and i can't wait to get more involved with this game. it's a funny thing though, for all the attention that psikyo, cave, toaplan, and others get from me... raizing is the only company that i get really excited about. :)
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2005 6:15 pm 


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This is kinda dumb, but I honestly am not sure where else to put it...maybe this is common knowledge to all but myself, but I honestly have no idea what "Garegga" means/refers to. Is it something like the play on words present in DoDonPachi, or some kind of abbreviation, or what?

Sorry to toss such a silly question on here, but every once in awhile the thought will occur to me, "What's a Garegga?" Maybe someone here knows, so that I can move on, heh.
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2005 7:09 pm 


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BulletMagnet, my assumption would be it's bad katakana for Garage.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2005 7:31 pm 


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Could be, but if that's the case, then that's REALLY bad Engrish. I wonder if there's anything "conclusive" out there...though info on Raizing's stuff in general seems scarcer than, say, Cave's...
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 23, 2005 8:13 pm 


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captain ahar wrote:
thanks for the kind words, icarus. i'm not looking to swamp myself in advanced techniques, just trying to get an understanding so i can seamlessly try and intergrate them when i get to that level. my only exposure to the game so far is the demo in Souky, and i have been playing it a lot in anticipation of the game's arrival.


You're welcome, I'm happy that (the currently incomplete) guide is of some use to you ^_^

If anything, take a look at the Training Plan that's housed in the General Information section (near the top) for a good plan for practice and study at the game. While many would say that Garegga is a very difficult game to get into - and admittedly, it is - it's only hair-tearingly difficult if you jump in feet first with suicidal tactics. The Training Plan details a good strategy for gradual study and proficiency with the game, and I myself devised and used that plan when I first started out.

It's definitely a good idea to work in more and more strategies when you start to feel comfortable with the game. Use the guide and pick scoring sections that are easy to achieve, such as scenery bombing. Get comfortable with those and then work more in after.

(NOTE: I must start rating each scoring trick in order of difficulty, for those who are learning to get to grips with scoring in the game. Something for me to think about.)

captain ahar wrote:
just cracked 4 mil the other day (i've been bombing the rail bridges though, since i don't have to worry about scoring past stage one).


Well done :D

IIRC, the first part of stage 3 up to the midboss - the railtrack, then the six water containers, then the turret bars with lots of flying drones - is worth roughly 600k in points if you are at MAX Medals. That's quite a lot of easy points :)

A few more easy scoring sections:
  • Stage 2 - Pink Flamingoes
    Depending on the ship you use, you can get between 600k - 3mil. Golden Bat averages around 1.6mil.
  • Stage 3 - Destroyed Railtrack
    The whole section of railtrack is worth 400k at MAX Medal value
  • Stage 4 - Pipes
    At the start of the stage, there is a tunnel on the right side of the screen, and you can see tanks underneath the covering. The two pipes above it are worth 10k plus house five Medals per pipe
  • Stage 4 - Tank Hangars
    Small square hangars are dotted around the stage, and tanks will appear from them. Attacking with Weapon will stop tanks from appearing, and also give you four Medals per hangar. There are ten square hangars in total, but four are located at the end of the stage with the boss, and are hard to get (part of the Medal Rails section)
captain ahar wrote:
thanks a bunch icarus. your guide is incredible. and i can't wait to get more involved with this game. it's a funny thing though, for all the attention that psikyo, cave, toaplan, and others get from me... raizing is the only company that i get really excited about. :)


Raizing have a pedigree of making non-user-friendly, incredibly complex games. But if anything, I find mastery of a Raizing-styled game far more rewarding than any other. But that's personal preference.

Like I said, the guide is still pretty incomplete, and is pending a huge rewrite with better explanations of strategy, more info and extra bits here and there. I've also got to find hosting for the replay material, there's about 1.1GB worth of stage and tricks footage with different ships (2GB if you count the many kusoplays captured).

If you have a question on anything in the meanwhile, please don't hesitate to ask, I'm always happy to help. ^_^

And now I head off to fight my way past the turret wall...

BulletMagnet wrote:
Could be, but if that's the case, then that's REALLY bad Engrish. I wonder if there's anything "conclusive" out there...though info on Raizing's stuff in general seems scarcer than, say, Cave's...


A long time ago, someone on the old GameSpy version forum stated the the "Garegga" part of the name might mean "Garage", as in "Battle Garage", a hangar where old cobbled together planes are stored for war. Given the old, rusty style of the game, and the WWII-styling of the craft, it might seem so.

I haven't found much hard information besides the story for the game, machine translated from The Handbook:

From the official storyline, The Garegga Handbook wrote:
That still, the time where it is believed science brings happiness to the mankind.
The Wayne sibling was born in countryside town of the peninsular south edge which is categorized to continent west. There to be also influence of the father, from young time to become familiar in the machine fumbling, after becoming an adult, with the side which manages the small automobile factory which the father leaves minutely, it kept producing the numerous original vehicle and the aircraft. And it reaches the point where the rumor reaches unnoticed to Federal Government.

As for the sibling it became to be received with treatment of the exceptional case which " development chief " is called to federation the original conception and with the bold design, the origin of abundant fund, polishing depended on the development speed of the sibling. And, the numerous new weapon which they produce makes the ambition of " territory enlargement " federation hold to be something which is sufficient, the time was not put in place and that ambition came to the point of with being translated into action.

Tardy their own present 2 people who become aware in accomplishing brought up 4 advanced fighter bombers which are in the midst of making on an experimental basis. It tried to stop the charge of federation with our body by hiding that. But, finally fire and sword extends to the town where they have hidden the body the meaning which the war which starts once ends with such a thing without, 2 people do the sweetness of the self and the actuality of war practically.

". As for now being before the eye harsh actuality. The actuality which escapes intently has lain before the eye. But, it does not do another escaping. To bury the weapon which is produced personally, by that hand the る. Unless it is, although knowing, with revolution of the engine cannot justice hold down the beat which increases in the behavior. It probably will be good. Itself righteousness it does not enter to carrying out responsibility. Simply, now it probably will wait for when sortieing. Because of the thing which present by his does. And, way by his future can keep walking. "

(From バトルガレッガ * official story)
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