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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2019 7:58 am 


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Turrican wrote:
Thanks, much improved list!

I hope this should cover most games now - it just occurred to me that Fire Mustang probably suffers from a couple of spots and also a handful of PCE games not mentioned above, I shall investigate the latter as soon as I have access to my console again.

I'm a most magnanimous soul when it comes to the genre definitions - for as long as I relish the games. Image

Turrican wrote:
Edit: about Xenon 2 even if you can use retro boosters to scroll backwards, I was under the impression that the waves the game throws at you are limited in number (thus preventing to milk cash other than points).

I don't think it works everywhere, but you can milk forevermore in certain spots for sure. One example is the very first cul-de-sac in stage 1. Someone in another forum even mentioned there is a spot later in the game where you can purposefully get stuck whilst enemies will spawn. They might appear in random intervals, but they will eventually return.

Plasmo wrote:
Which checkpoint can be milked infinitely?

The one on the final boss. Just like in the arcade game, killing the final boss will grant 100,000 points, and you have a couple of seconds after taking it out to collide with the ground or ceiling. Unfortunately, unlike the arcade game, you gain an extend both in the PCE and in the SFC port every 100,000 points, meaning you can do this indefinitely.
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2019 3:41 pm 


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Turrican wrote:
Indeed listing the opposite would've shortened your trouble.

When discussing the circumstances under which certain games have infinite milking, in essence you end up with a list of them anyway (while listing the opposite certainly also helps, as has been said).

And yet; another game previously thought unscathed has been slain!

Paranoia (PCE HuCard), checkpoint milking: it's another Parodius Da!-case as described above, the last boss granting the amount of points equivalent to one extra life.
However, you need to pull off a small trick in order to make it work, as the game cunningly removes the hitbox/es of the walls as soon as the skull is destroyed. Now if you outright crash into the boss in the right moment, both of you will go down still :P

There's a setup making it consistent: grab the side-pods (which can always be picked up during the last checkpoint, conveniently), utilize the safespot right above the boss' last phase and let the lower pod overlap with it 25 times. The 26th time, you crash into it, holding down just after your pod crosses the red "tube".

Perikles wrote:
I'm a most magnanimous soul when it comes to the genre definitions

If Zombies is on the list, then I'm happy to take up the cudgel for Atomic Runner / Chelnov. :D
That game doesn't feature boss timeouts, leading into a boss-milking opportunity at least during the 3rd one. If you dilligently take out the infantry it releases while carefully fending off the homing bullet with your shot, your score shall rise slowly, but indefinitely.


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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2019 5:39 pm 


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Perikles wrote:
Someone in another forum even mentioned there is a spot later in the game where you can purposefully get stuck whilst enemies will spawn. They might appear in random intervals, but they will eventually return.


Could they have been referring to 4-2? The pteranodonts/butterflies...
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2019 6:27 pm 


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Did swift testing on both Fire Mustang & Sol-Deace and was pleasantly surprised to learn that both games incorporated time-outs for their bosses. Additionally, Fire Mustang turns wroth rather quickly, bosses will cease their valuable activity even before their time-out, instead becoming irately ensouled to wipe out the player. Commendable programming, that! It's really interesting in which places you find safety measures like these, I was almost shocked to find out that Spriggan Powered of all games took care of that. The mountebanks over at Micronics thought of it, yet the likes of Undeadline and R-Type III are irreparably broken. Ah, the irony.

6t8k wrote:
Paranoia (PCE HuCard) [...]

Now this is some superb detective work! I wonder how difficult the checkpoint recovery would be - I had one run in the second loop end on the final checkpoint since I couldn't recover at all, not so sure about the first loop.

In a similar vein, if you could somehow get a double K.O. in Daioh Gale on the final boss, you'd boost your score materially and gain a couple of extends as a result. You can also theoretically milk all the bosses bar the fourth, but this is one of those games where it is nigh impossible without either dying or killing the boss eventually. Another case for italics.

I also added Chelnov; we're obviously stretching the boundaries with ZAMN and Chelnov a lot, but it can't hurt in a descriptive thread such as this.

Turrican wrote:
Could they have been referring to 4-2? The pteranodonts/butterflies...

I successfully suppressed the minutiae of this game, I did manage to find a screenshot of the place in question, though:

Image

That is stage 4 if I am not mistaken, no?




Regarding formatting etc., I will eventually try to spruce up the first post a little bit, I thought about using colour coding for the usefulness of the exploits, for example (Dead Moon could receive a green colour by dint of its extremely tedious/nugatory nature, a moreso pronounced case like Super Star Soldier could be portrayed in orange whereas an unsalvageable specimen such as Gleylancer would receive a red hue), I'd like to check out a few more games before doing so, however.
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2019 9:37 pm 


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Perikles wrote:
I wonder how difficult the checkpoint recovery would be - I had one run in the second loop end on the final checkpoint since I couldn't recover at all, not so sure about the first loop.

While it's certainly not easy in the most sincere sense of the word, I'd say it's very consistent once you fully memorize that small portion of the game.

This is a video of me doing it twice with the recovery in between to get a feeling for it. Played in realtime using an emulator (though with fast-forward to help crush the tedium) since I don't have the physical game at hand:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-GX7AEU5AM


I've now looked at Saint Dragon (PCE HuCard), that one goes down as well with a checkpoint milk. The 1up around the midpoint of the 2nd stage always re-appears if you suicide after collecting it. What a trivial mistake the developers made here.


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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2019 10:38 pm 


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Once more my gratitude - Saint Dragon was actually on my radar, although for boss milking purposes: could you also destroy the orbs forever, or is there a time-out? The RGB cable of my PC Engine chose a inauspicious time to cease its work, that's for sure.

Edit: great video, too! This looks perfectly feasible unlike its loop two complement where the spiders have so much health that you practically can't kill them upon recovery.
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2019 8:17 pm 


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Turns out indeed you can, timeouts are absent. This means bosses 2-5 should be milkable, if I'm not mistaken (I only checked the 2nd one which should be the easiest as well).

I also felt inspired by your suggestion and had a look at Daioh Gale (SFC) which seemed promising at first.
The kamikaze method doesn't seem to work, as opposed to Paranoia your ship sprite only inflicts a tiny amount of damage that's seemingly incapable of killing the boss, even if another single projectile would have done the trick. You can still achieve a double-KO if you suicide and some of your bullets still on screen hit the boss afterwards (the other way around, you'll become invincible the moment the boss dismantles). Yet as I can't imagine a consistent setup for it, I suspect it'll remain a theoretical feat only.


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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 11:44 am 


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A new PCE RGB cable arrived and I managed to look into my suspects. For the nonce, the list is finished (the current suspects are of a hypothetical nature where you'd realistically want to use invincibility/fast-forward to unequivocally prove/falsify the thesis, they're not practically relevant) - I did implement the color coding as promised (with an explanation in the first post) and also added the currently untainted titles underneath each respective console, too. The color coding itself is obviously somewhat subjective in at least a few cases, but I hope it serves as an expedient guideline. If you stumble across another game, please holler. :)
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 3:53 pm 


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Like the color coding, it definitely improves visibility of severity at a glance. Only thing I'd bring up is that the difference between italics and green isn't that clear I think - both are referred to as meaning the exploit is of theoretical nature.

Two more affected games;

- Formation Armed F (PCE HuCard): the second boss can be continuously milked with the best safespot inarguably being the bottom center with the "C" powerup.

- Magical Chase (PCE HuCard): on paper, the first phase of the second boss fight can be milked ad-infinitum for the small accompanying tree trunks. But there is no safespot and you're better off not upgrading your shot lest you increase your chance of advancing to the second phase eventually. This one's probably a case for italics and/or green.


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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 4:24 pm 


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Thanks as always for the additions! Never even thought about Formation Armed F, but it instantly dawned on me that I did look at Magical Chase at some point while trying to improve my score, immediately dismissing it for it is so dangerous to carefully take out the tree stumps without hitting the actual boss - no clue how that could've slipped my mind.

6t8k wrote:
Only thing I'd bring up is that the difference between italics and green isn't that clear I think - both are referred to as meaning the exploit is of theoretical nature.

I altered the wording slightly, I likewise want to point out that you're certainly right that there are large overlaps between the two. Every game in italics is per definition one in green, I did want to have a small nuance with those games in green that have no italics. The boss milking in Dangerous Seed for example cannot be done indefinitely if you're a human player, you will either hit the boss at some time or get hit by something, it's nonetheless theoretically possible. Boss milking in Dead Moon on the other hand could be done indefinitely if you're extraordinarily attentive, yet the reward is not worth it whatsoever. You'd have to literally spend hours for a few thousand points in a game where you can end with roughly 10m at least, probably more. It doesn't require robotic precision which is why there is at least a chance someone might be able to milk this for extended periods of time, it's the compensation that will deter over 99% of the players that eventually turns it harmless. Not a drastic difference for sure, I figured it might be worthwhile to point it out, though.
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Sun Oct 13, 2019 5:27 pm 


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Gotcha - thanks for the clarification :)


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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2019 3:11 am 


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I actually experimented with Ai Cho Aniki scoring a while ago, and found that there's really not much of interest to it.

EXCEPT There's a glitch in the game where, if you die during the animation where the guy on the hourglass bar as he's turning over the next hourglass when you only have 2 left, you'll go down to 0 hourglasses but not game over. After the glitch is activated, a glitched hourglass will appear which can never time out. When you die again, it refills your entire hourglass bar. This essentially turns every boss with projectiles that can be hit for points (such as the eggplants on the 3-2 boss) into an infinite.

Edit: I've made a video demonstrating the infinite, using the 1-3 boss as the example. The glitch is activated at 3:10.

Edit 2: Did a full run with the infinite and got a score of 1,144,650, confirming that it does not counterstop at 999,999. Also confirming how overpowered it is.
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Wed Oct 23, 2019 4:03 pm 


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I really appreciate how comprehensive this list is. Fantastic work, Perikles. I'd recommend a brighter shade of green for the green ones in the list cause it's a bit hard to read on the forum's dark blue background image (and impossible if I'm browsing in no-images mode, it produces a dark blue background placeholder that's like the same shade as the green :P).

Are you also planning on compiling one for 8-bit shmups (unless I've missed that there's a thread for those)? I can think of at least a couple that are completely counterstop breakable with little effort and a lot of time (Guardian Legend and Life Force come to mind).
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 12:39 pm 


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BareKnuckleRoo wrote:
I really appreciate how comprehensive this list is. Fantastic work, Perikles. I'd recommend a brighter shade of green for the green ones in the list cause it's a bit hard to read on the forum's dark blue background image (and impossible if I'm browsing in no-images mode, it produces a dark blue background placeholder that's like the same shade as the green ).


Lime works better than green on this forum, I've found!

(I use black in my VIOLENT CITY sig because it looks EDGY & X-TREEM Image)
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 6:24 pm 


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ZPScissors wrote:
[...] Ai Cho Aniki [...]

Had to test that on my PCE - despite the various shapes and forms that exploits come in, I could've well imagined this to be a phenomenon begotten by emulation. However, it works just as well on real hardware - stupendous finding, never would've stumbled over this one. :)


BareKnuckleRoo wrote:
I'd recommend a brighter shade of green [...]

BIL wrote:
Lime works better than green on this forum, I've found!

Done!

BareKnuckleRoo wrote:
Are you also planning on compiling one for 8-bit shmups (unless I've missed that there's a thread for those)? I can think of at least a couple that are completely counterstop breakable with little effort and a lot of time (Guardian Legend and Life Force come to mind).

I only posted the handful that I'm aware of in a desultory manner here as I'm only familiar with 50-80% of the Famicom/NES library (depends on what you consider to be part of the genre, there are myriads of outliers there), haven't played any Master System game yet. I know that Kollision surely could help us out with some of those, but I feel somewhat reluctant creating a thread with fairly significant lacunae regarding the most basic knowledge. I'd be more than willing to contribute to one, though! :mrgreen:
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Thu Oct 24, 2019 7:32 pm 


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Looks great! (if I do say so myself :mrgreen:)
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Fri Oct 25, 2019 12:24 am 


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Perikles wrote:
Had to test that on my PCE - despite the various shapes and forms that exploits come in, I could've well imagined this to be a phenomenon begotten by emulation. However, it works just as well on real hardware - stupendous finding, never would've stumbled over this one. :)


I didn't actually discover the glitch btw, it's been known for at least a few years, I just realized it could be used for scoring and found some places where it can be used for easy milking.
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 Post subject: Re: 16-bit shmups with broken scoring systems
PostPosted: Sat Nov 02, 2019 5:29 pm 


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The colours make it so readable and fancy. 8)
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