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 Post subject: ST: Soukyugurentai (27.04.05 - guide opened)
PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 1:23 am 


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Updates (27.04.2005):

  • Just opened the ST guide. There might be a few additions and corrections that need to be made/added, so if you spot anything, please let me know, and I'll add it to the guide.

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Like most of Raizing's output, Soukyugurentai is a game that demands to be learnt, to be understood, and to be mastered. Like the games before and after it, it features an intuitive but complex weapon system, a simple scoring system and the infamous rank system, all intertwined together in such a way that to learn to manipulate one system, you must understand the others.

In this short guide to all things Soukyugurentai, I'll be attempting to compile a detailed guide to everything that needs to be understood in order to maximise your scoring efficiency in the game.

So anyway, lets get to it!

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> WEAPON SYSTEM: <
To get to grips with Soukyugurentai, you must first understand the weapons in your arsenal and the many differences between each available ship. Although it may not be immediately apparent, each available ship affects your scoring ability greatly, and each must be controlled in a particular way in order to maximise your potential score.

  • SHOT:
    Each ship is equipped with a forward firing Shot, and each ship's Shot varies in power and range. Like most of Raizing's games, this Shot is powered up by collecting powerup icons in increasing multiples:

    • Lv 1 (0 powerups - starting state)
    • Lv 2 (2 powerups)
    • Lv 3 (4 powerups)
    • Lv 4 (8 powerups)
    • Lv 5 (16 powerups)

    As far as I know, there is no sixth power level, and surplus powerups will add points to your score. However, there is a downside to powering up your Shot, which will be explained in the Rank System section of the guide.

  • WEB:
    The secondary weapon of your ship is a visual targeting radar of which has two differing ranges and attack types depending on the ship you're using. This targeting radar (hereby referred to as Web) has the ability to attack enemies on three planes - on the same plane as your ship, above, and below - and the attacks fired from the web are homing attacks of varying power.

    The Web's targeting range is limited to a particular shape, and any targets that move within this shape will immediately be locked onto. The amount of maximum lock-ons you can have is dependent on the ship you have selected. Some of the targeting webs can be moved in various directions in order to extend the maximum range of that particular lock-on attack.

    Another feature of the Web is that it affects the type of Bomb you release. More detailed info is in the Bomb section of the Weapons System guide.

    One other thing. Much like Taito's Rayforce series of games, Souky's Web weapon is closely tied to the scoring system, and it is by learning skillful manipulation of the Web weapon which will see your scoring potential improve.

  • BOMB:
    The Bomb in Souky is a very powerful panic button, that also benefits from being linked to the Web weapon:

    • If Web is not active: the Bomb is a forward firing impact blast that renders your ship temporarily invincible. The impact can sometimes send large ships off-course :D

    • If Web is active but no lock-ons: the Bomb is a short range circle sweep of small blasts, radiating from your ship, that nullify bullets and renders your ship invincible. Great for a quick panic attack.

    • If Web is active and active lock-ons: the Bomb is a cluster of small blasts that home in on whatever is locked onto. Great for quickly damaging large ships and boss target points.

    The Bomb is also tied to the scoring system in that collecting excess Bombs grants you increasing points values (more in the Scoring System section) but a downside to using the Bomb is that is only gives you quarter of the base points value from anything destroyed by the Bomb. Therefore, to maximise your score, you must learn to play the game almost bombless.

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> SCORING SYSTEM: <
There are two scoring systems in Souky that are closely tied to the weapons you have available:

  • THE WEB AND THE MULTIPLIER:
    The Web weapon has the ability to lock onto several enemies at once, and you are granted a multiplier for each enemy destroyed by a group of lock-on attacks, depending on the maximum amount of lock-ons you had active when you released your lock-on attack. Here's a handy table summarising the active lock-on amounts for each multiplier value, ordered by ship:

    Image

    As you can see, in order to get the base points value multiplied from anything destroyed with a lock-on attack, you need to have at least four lock-ons active at the time of attack. The more active lock-ons you have when you attack, the higher the multiplier you will gain. Destroying something with three active lock-ons will grant you base points value only.

    One important thing to note is that you will only get points for anything you destroy with a lock on, and not for anything that is simply damaged by an attack. You can exploit this by using a few lock-ons on high resilience targets, and your remaining lock-ons on destroyable targets. This way, you'll be damaging the high resilence targets and still be gaining maximum multiplier points from the destroyable ones. The only other piece of advice for score attackers is to not waste lock-ons in any situation. If you still have available lock-ons, make sure you use them up before you release your attacks.

  • THE BOMB AND SURPLUS BOMB BONUSES:
    Given that usage of the Bomb results in a 1/4 multiplier being applied to all enemies destroyed by the Bomb, it would be advisable to try not to bomb in any situation if you can help it. This is made doubly important by the amount of bonus points you can get from collecting surplus Bombs. Here is a small chart detailing the amount of bonus points you can get:

    Image

    As you can see, for every surplus Bomb you collect after the 11th, you will get over 655,000pts as a bonus. For score attackers, this is gold, as you can get more points than a 100% Enemy Destruction Bonus. The only possible way you can get this many Bombs and more is by manipulation of the Rank System, and more will be detailed in that relevant section.

  • ENEMY DESTRUCTION RATIO BONUS:
    At the end of each stage, you will be awarded a bonus depending on the total percentage of enemies you have destroyed. The maximum bonus you can get is 500,000pts for 100%, and anything less than 100% is calculated by the formula:

    500,000 - 200,000 - (enemy remaining % x 20,000)

    The maximum destruction bonus is tied to the Rank System, and not in a good way. More info in it's relevant section.

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> RANK SYSTEM: <
Like all good Raizing games, Soukyugurentai features a rank system that alters the game's difficulty depending on various factors, and as stated before, this rank system is tied to the weapon and scoring systems of the game. In order to control one system, you must understand the others.

  • WHAT DOES RANK AFFECT?:
    When the rank level increases, it changes:

    • The speed of enemy bullets
    • Enemy aggressiveness (rate of fire, number of bullets)
    • Enemy resilience (large enemies and bosses toughen up)
    • Enemy numbers (more smaller drones appear)
    • Appearance of powerup carriers (they appear more frequently the lower rank is)

    Being able to spot the changes in rank is key to progression in Souky. Although the game is still potentially manageable at maximum rank, later levels will become hellishly difficult, and boss battles will take much, much longer, increasing the chances of being killed.

  • HOW DO I AFFECT RANK?:
    There are several things you do in game that will increase the rank level:

    • Powering up your Shot.
      Yes, your Shot is effectively crippled if you wish to play rank controlled, although this does have the upside of forcing you to learn to play with your Web only.
    • Survival.
      The game will gradually get more difficult the further you progress on your current life.
    • Getting 100% Destruction in a stage.
    • Picking up surplus items.
      Picking up more Shot powerups than you require increases rank as well. According to Rando, surplus Bombs also increase rank, although I haven't noticed any difference in increase. (Can anyone verify this for me?)

  • TIPS TO MANAGE RANK:
    First and foremost, do not powerup your Shot. Powering up Shot will yield the biggest increases in Rank. This, as stated previously, also forces you to learn to use the Web effectively as your primary weapon, which also forces you to learn to maximise lock-on potential to score high. Even though your Shot will be crippled, you can still use it to weaken high resilience targets in order to gain multiplied points from Web usage, and to accelerate powerup carrier appearances by shooting them as soon as they appear (as opposed to using them as lock-on fodder).

    Learn the stages, and in particular, learn which enemies you can safely release to lower your enemy destruction percentage, without making too much of a dent in the overall bonus. At least you should aim to leave one enemy of some kind, which should give you around 98-99%.

  • EXPLOITING RANK:
    The inverse of this serious rank control nonsense is in the exploitation of one key feature of the rank system: the increase in the number of enemies that appear. Remember that you get a multiplier active depending on the amount of active lock-ons you have, therefore you can increase your potential pointgain by purposefully increasing rank (within manageable levels) to make more enemies appear. More enemies means more lock-on bonus points :D

    So what would be the best way to do this? Since powering up the Shot jumps the rank up, it would be theoretically safer to increase rank via the 100% Destruction bonus. However, an increase in rank means less chance of achieving the Bomb surplus bonuses, but this is in theory negated by the amount of points you can get from an increased number of enemies.

    Definitely something to look into.


Last edited by Icarus on Thu Jun 25, 2009 10:02 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 3:14 am 


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One small thing I (think I) noticed: I'm 95 percent sure that locking onto and destroying exactly 3 enemies at once will give you a "x 1" bonus, that is, pretty much just the enemy's "regular" point value, instead of a x 1/2 penalty. I'd hafta double check it, but I remember seeing no multiplier message at all appear whenever I'd nail exactly 3 enemies at once with my lock-on.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 3:20 am 


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BulletMagnet wrote:
One small thing I (think I) noticed: I'm 95 percent sure that locking onto and destroying exactly 3 enemies at once will give you a "x 1" bonus, that is, pretty much just the enemy's "regular" point value, instead of a x 1/2 penalty. I'd hafta double check it, but I remember seeing no multiplier message at all appear whenever I'd nail exactly 3 enemies at once with my lock-on.


Yeah. I figured that's what it was. It's been a while since I last played so I'm going off memory here.
Guide corrected. Thanks.
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 4:15 pm 



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Glad you finally made it, Icarus :wink:

Will read and contribute as much as i can, of course :o
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 10:14 pm 


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Something I recalled...I remember Rando (I think it was him, anyway) mentioning that the rank in Souky will automatically increase to some extent as you get further in, and WILL "max out" by the time you're at the final level, no matter how much you've controlled it before that. Is this accurate, or do I remember incorrectly?
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 10:30 pm 


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Probably maxes out at the dificulty 8?
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 11:44 pm 


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Randorama wrote:
Glad you finally made it, Icarus :wink:

Will read and contribute as much as i can, of course :o


Thanks :)
Your inputs are always appreciated. I'm probably missing a few things here and there, so if there's an oversight, let me know and I'll add it immediately.

BulletMagnet wrote:
Something I recalled...I remember Rando (I think it was him, anyway) mentioning that the rank in Souky will automatically increase to some extent as you get further in, and WILL "max out" by the time you're at the final level, no matter how much you've controlled it before that. Is this accurate, or do I remember incorrectly?


That doesn't sound totally accurate. Rank will increase gradually based on survival time and player input via-a-vis powering up, collecting surplus items and enemy destruction. Rank will not increase at a given point irrespective of player input, nor will it automatically max out at the final stage.

There is a maximum rank level, but to reach that, you'd have to power up your main Shot to maximum power from the first stage, get 100% destruction on ALL stages, grab tons of surplus powerups, and somehow manage to survive the rank-induced nightmare that would follow in one life. In reality, the only action that will see a sharp increase in rank is powering up Shot, everything else you do will increase in small amounts. By the last stage, if you played a decent rank controlled game, I'd estimate the rank level to be about 55-65% of maximum.

Remember though, that like in all Raizing games, you can exploit Rank to increase scoring opportunities. By kicking it up a notch or two, you can force more enemies to appear, increasing your available lock-on fodder. This is a dangerous trick to try though, so be careful.

----------------------------------------------------------------

Stage 1 demonstration replay forthcoming, as well as a mini-guide to taking apart the first boss for 1mil+ pts.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2005 3:07 am 


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Icarus wrote:
There is a maximum rank level, but to reach that, you'd have to power up your main Shot to maximum power from the first stage, get 100% destruction on ALL stages, grab tons of surplus powerups, and somehow manage to survive the rank-induced nightmare that would follow in one life.

Hmm, so this thing is apparently a Garegga-esque "nearly endless rank" game, in which there really isn't a realistic "top rank" you can hit at some point and just have the game stay there till the end...if this weren't the case, I'd be half tempted to max out the rank early just so I could have a better amount of practice in nasty circumstances before getting to the last area, where it'd be evil anyway. Alas, looks like going for the disproportionate bomb stock bonus is really the only "viable" way to play this thing...of course, at my level of inexperience I actually tend to get farther in Raizing games when I disregard the rank and shoot/collect most everything, so you shouldn't ask me, heh.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2005 3:37 am 


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The thing that gets me about this game is it still catches me out. I've one lifed all the levels, but I can never link it altogether. I think I'm just trying too hard.
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2005 3:09 pm 



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Rank doesn't max out but goes to a default minimum level when you reach the final stage, which is consistently lower than the max rank (which is truly insane, i'd add...).

Taking bombs for points increases rank, but the increase is basically minimal, olwer than powering up and staying alive. Also, dying seems to lower rank by a given value, i.e. regardless of the lives remaining, it will go down X levels.

Your main shot will always give you a x1 multiplier to destroyed enemies, if you take them down with a bomb it's 1/4 of the value.

The ships have two webs and and each web has a different form and is based on lasers or "vulcan missiles", the latter do "land damage" and give you the same multiplier for enemies destroyed by this effect.

Last but not least, this is the sequel to Rayforce that Raizing wanted to do (and had the courage to publish!), funny that was published more or less in the same period of Raystorm (the official Rayforce sequel that, however, went in another direction, which is actually very Raizing-esque!).
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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2005 1:28 am 


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I was going through all the sound affects last night and I noticed there was a sound effect for a level 6 shot. So maybe there is a secret level 6 shot?

Also for some reason rank seems to increase on stage 1 for me quicker with the mackeral and scallop. Even when I get higher scores with the swordfish I still dont get the extra bullets at the stage 1 boss.
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PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2005 1:19 am 


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MovingTarget wrote:
I was going through all the sound affects last night and I noticed there was a sound effect for a level 6 shot. So maybe there is a secret level 6 shot?


There might be a sixth power level, but it might not be secret. Perhaps 32 P icons? I'd have to look into it (and that means firing up the Saturn again and braving the higher rank difficulties :)).
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 Post subject: Practice mode
PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2005 2:25 am 


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I have a couple of questions about this game, maybe you guys can answer them.

Is playing the levels in practice mode on level 8 about the same as max rank? If not, how much harder is max rank?

Does bombing decrease rank?


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2005 11:15 pm 


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Changing the dificulty in the options does not change the rank system, nor does it set it to something resembling maximum rank. All it does is change the starting difficulty level. Rank will add to that regardless.

To my memory, bombing does not decrease rank. Dying does, but if you want to go for a good score, then it's best not to die (as a higher rank generates more enemies to lock on to).
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 Post subject: Does aforementioned Terra Diver ST apply to the ST-V ver.?
PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 6:12 pm 



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I don't have either SS or PSX versions of Souky but only the ST-V cart of Souky. My question is: Does the aforementioned Souky Strategy apply to the Sega ST-V mobo version as well?

At least on the Souky ST-V version, your high scores are saved via CR-2032 battery (like that of the SS console counterpart as well).

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 6:37 pm 


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I would imagine that the original arcade version works the same way, at least for the most part.
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 Post subject: Re: Does aforementioned Terra Diver ST apply to the ST-V ver
PostPosted: Mon Jul 11, 2005 7:16 pm 


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PC Engine Fan X! wrote:
I don't have either SS or PSX versions of Souky but only the ST-V cart of Souky. My question is: Does the aforementioned Souky Strategy apply to the Sega ST-V mobo version as well?


Yes, as far as I know, Souky ST-V is the same as the level 5 difficulty of Saturn Souky, so all the strategies apply.
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 27, 2005 6:26 am 


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Is there any way to configure controls on the PS version? The option screen (pressing select at title) comes up and I have no idea what anything does.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2006 9:07 am 


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Has anyone investigated the score potential for picking surplus shot power-ups? I've only survived to get the surplus shot bonus up to about 500, which is obviously incredibly low, but perhaps the amount continues to grow to enormous amounts?

It seems that raising the rank to huge levels and collecting all surplus items is inevitably required in order to get a better score than just going through the game without picking up powerups and managing rank. Has anyone seen any godlike Japanese replays?
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2006 7:15 pm 


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Macaw wrote:
Has anyone investigated the score potential for picking surplus shot power-ups? I've only survived to get the surplus shot bonus up to about 500, which is obviously incredibly low, but perhaps the amount continues to grow to enormous amounts?

It seems that raising the rank to huge levels and collecting all surplus items is inevitably required in order to get a better score than just going through the game without picking up powerups and managing rank. Has anyone seen any godlike Japanese replays?


Not really. The more powered up you are, the less frequently powerup carriers appear, decreasing the availability of upping score in this manner. Also, you lose the chance to pick up surplus bombs which are the real providers of scoring.

If anything, the proper method to scoring is to manage Shot power so that it is at the lowest level, and you're getting powerup carriers every few seconds, and milking bosses for these powerup carriers. I've managed to stick around against the stage1, 2 and 4 and 5 bosses between two minutes and timeout duration, picking up surplus bombs for the 655k bonus.

You can also up rank by getting 100% destruction on stages, which has the extra benefit of generating extra enemies.

According to AIVA, the WR for the Swordfish is 39mil, and thats with collecting 21 extra bombs. I am unaware of any WR-class replays online, although I don't discount the possibility that they are around, somewhere, in some form or other.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2006 8:31 pm 



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39 M - 655k*21 (13,1M)= 25,9M. Pretty much doable, namely:

1st stage: around 2,5M
2nd stage: 3,5M
3rd stage: 4M
4th stage: 3M (?)
5th stage: 5M
6th stage: 8M (It may be 9M, and 4M on stage 5)

Of course other ships offer more scoring opportunities and less milking, according also to AIVA. I have done like 23M by experimenting on lower difficulties, Regarding scores (and also tried stage score attack).
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 13, 2006 9:01 pm 


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The main question is how to get 21 extra bombs at 655k each. I can see sticking around particular bosses for powerup carriers, but there are attack patterns that can cause problems. IMO the easiest bosses to milk are stage2 boss first form, stage4 boss when its not in beamcannon spamming mode, stage5 boss second form. Anywhere else and its a bit of a pain.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2006 1:53 am 


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Randorama wrote:
I have done like 23M by experimenting on lower difficulties

:shock: Stop the presses! Scandal breaks on shmups forum! Rando has actually spent time playing on below-default difficulty! Edelweiss breaks off all diplomatic ties with both Italy and Holland in protest! Is this sort of thing an instant dishonorable discharge from The Raizing Hardcore Club for Men? ;)
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2006 9:23 am 



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BulletMagnet wrote:
:shock: Stop the presses!


Gimme a break, it's the fastest method to check scores...but not the most accurate in this case, you need a full run to get the right rank. Still, i have checked the values for all bosses of Stage 6 at least.

The entire first half of the last stage is somewhere around 3M, Consider that all green ships shooting lasers are worth 200k (50k * 4), and there are 7 of them. The section before the mid-boss is worth 1M alone if done properly.
The mid-boss is worth 400k and can be killed for a x4 (1,6M).
Then, the entire section before the final boss is worth around 2M if properly done.
The final boss is worth 800k and, to the best of my knowledge, it's impossible to get a x4 or more, but it's still a 2,4M.
The nemesis (the black ship) is worth 1M, it's only possible to use the main shot for the right score.
That's 10M plus the end of stage bonus, actually...and eventual bombs.

Icarus, i don't get your comment about bosses. The whole point is that you should max out bombs by the first boss, and then collect another 21 extra bombs DURING the other stages (i.e. not only milking the bosses, which also helps though). I can check the "flow-chart" of other stages as well, but they're rather uninteresting (i.e. straightforward).

Ok, Stage 4: the brown tanks are the only worthy enemies mentioning, 25k*4. The boss is worth 300k*4. The *4 must be obtained by locking-on the far end of the head (which can be technically off-screen if the boss is situated in the higher half of the screen) plus a carrier. Not difficult, actually.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2006 1:21 pm 



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Distribution of score seems to be different. I have made a few tries and...

Stage 5: The stage should be worth 2,5M. A proper breakdown is:

400k At the the first batch of submarines (a submarine is worth 30k*n).

The rest of the stage is small chains (and another submarine) for another 600k or so. Then, after the platforms, the first two red bombers are around 200k or so. Then, the five submarines and then again the red bomber plus the green ships' sequence (you should be at 2M by this point) and then the last submarines plus some more enemies (around 2,5M).

The boss must be done carefully. It is fundamental to take down all the central turrets and then the four engines. The central turrets are worth 200k and reveal the homing missile launchers. The engines are worth 40k each, so you should get ~700k (4 engines*40k*k + the homing pods and/or the other cannons) for this form alone.

The second form has two antennae on the back, three cannons shooting homing missiles on the front. They must be taken down together for something like another 800k (their total is around 200k in value, multiplied per 4). The final form is worth 100k so can go down with a single lock-on with no real waste.

The total is:

2,5M (stage) +
700k (first form boss) +
900k (second form boss) +
500k (00% missed en.) +
=
4,6M

More to follow...
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2006 1:39 pm 



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Stage 6 is roughly like this:

The first green carrier (the ones which shoot lasers) is worth 200k (50k*4).

Then, the sequence to the main base is worth another 700k or so: one red bomber, two green carriers, the other types of carriers, etc. From this point on, it's about another 1M until the sequence with the various types of carriers and the the three green carriers. This part alone is worth the third million.

The mid-boss is actually worth 200k (*4), plus the various cannons and pods (So another M).

The second half has the central cannon to be worth 200k, then the engines with the missiles to be 400k each, and there's another 1,2M or so in enemies.

The final boss has three layers: the first layer is worth 800k (not sure, i think i got 600k with a x3 active), the second layer is 200k (i think), the last layer is indeed 800k*3 (i.e. 2,4M). The nemesis is 1M.

The breakdown:

3M (first half) +
1M (Mid-boss) +
2,2M (second half) +
4,4M (final bosses) +
500k (see above) +

11,1M

Almost half of the "no-bonus" score comes from the last stage...
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2006 1:46 pm 



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Stage 4 is very straightforward. There are 12 brown tanks worth 100k each, plus the various enemies (roughly 2M in total). The boss is worth 300k*4=1,2M, so the total is:

2M (stage) +
1,2M (boss) +
500k (eos) +

3,7M

The last three stages make up 19,4M.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2006 2:33 pm 


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Thanks for the score distributions Rando. I'll add them to the guide.

Randorama wrote:
Icarus, i don't get your comment about bosses. The whole point is that you should max out bombs by the first boss, and then collect another 21 extra bombs DURING the other stages (i.e. not only milking the bosses, which also helps though). I can check the "flow-chart" of other stages as well, but they're rather uninteresting (i.e. straightforward).


That is true, but given the random nature of the carriers and the items they possess, it makes it difficult to pick up lots of bombs in-stage. Also the first boss is a pain to milk for bombs, both the rocket attack and the entrapment spread are pretty dangerous for a first boss.

By carefully working other bosses until before timeout, you can maximise the amount of bomb icons gained from a stage.
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 14, 2006 5:55 pm 



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The funny thing is that the first three stages, in pure Compile style, are basically worthless. The second boss can be milked for its rotating pods (the green things rotating around the main turret), but it's not an easy task.

The third boss is pretty annoying but based on an interesting idea: in a nutshell, it must be damaged with the main shot and taken down with the web. It's better to damage the two dragon-heads as well, so the final x4 takes down the said parts as well (for a total of 600k, go figure).

Estimation on stage 3: i would say 3,5M. It's roughly 2,3M on the stage (a lot of small chains and the various carriers/big planes), plus the boss and the 500k from the EOS (End Of Stage).
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 03, 2007 4:02 pm 


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Am I correct to assume the Saturn game only has one play mode, ie, arcade mode? Having said that I should address the fact that the PS1 game has two modes: Special & Arcade.

On PS1, Special is default from initial boot up and from what I've found in terms of difficulty between this and the selectable Arcade mode is that Special is the easier game. The significant amount of time I've spent on Soukyu has been on Special and while the difficulty level (Level 4 default) doesn't change between the two versions it's obvious that the difficultly is is not the same between them, where Arcade is tougher. Perhaps not as many people play the PS1 game and those that do are probably on the default Special mode.
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