Challenges [final boss Spoilers]

May 13, 2005 at 10:22 PM
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I saw the link about Speed Runs on the Cave Story tribute site. I was wondering if anyone has tried any other challenges to make Cave Story harder.


1) Minimal Items challenge - Only picking up the weapons the game forces you to take - Polar Star, Fireball, Sword and Normal Missile with 10 rockets. (the game forces you to take them before you can fight Sisters, I think. No Snake, Spur, Machine Gun, Nemesis, Super Missiles, Bubbler, Arms Barrier, extra missiles and anything else you's not forced to take.
I've managed this - defeated Ballos with a time of about 9:30. (my best in a normal game is 4'59" BTW)

2) Low HP challenge - get through the game without picking up any Energy Capsules, so that you still have a max of 3 HP at the end. (and practically anything can kill you in one hit) I can get to the Undead Core with this, and get him down to about 1/4 health, but I've never actually been able to kill him. I think it can be done... but I'm not holding out for getting though Hell like this. Ever.

Anyone think of anything else that could be interesting?

Yeah, I have way too much free time at work.
 
May 15, 2005 at 2:24 AM
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The Low HP or rather the 3 HP challenge has been done by a great deal of Japanese gamers for sure and there are a few movies on the doukutsu uploader site of fans accomplishing difficult areas with all enemies dealing a one-hit kill. Examples of areas like this have been the Grasstown area with all the critters and power critters without ever using a weapon. Or a 3HP challenge of someone actually making it through the crumbling corridor of falling blocks and pesky flying butes in hell. Some of those videos are really funny and some just make you want to throw your controller as to how easy they make it look. ^_^

There are a few fans who have tried going through the game without picking up certain weapons, such as the missile launcher, which in turn changes a few elements of the game such as more life and weapon energy being provided by defeated enemies and the last missile expansion capsule giving you something like 100 missiles if you've neglected to get the missile launcher up to that point in the game. There is more information on this in the secrets faq on the site. Not sure if this skipping the missile launcher really makes anything more challenging per se, but possibly if you are only using the bare minimum of equipments and the polar star.

As for an entire speedrun with a minimal items challenge, I don't believe anyone has attempted this on the whole, just in short segments in particular areas that are tough. It would be great to see someone do this and even better, record it for all to see. I know I don't have the skill to do that yet.

By the way, this gives me an new idea in that I should create a "Scores" or "Speedrun Scores" section that will document the number one time score of several Cave Story challenges. This would would be great to have on the site so that visitors can see what the current highscore is and who the person is who has accomplished this feat.
 
May 16, 2005 at 7:08 AM
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I generally do challenges for games that are otherwise too easy. So for example, after I've played through Super Metroid for the upteenth time, I'll try doing it without ever getting the Charged Beam, or with a minimal item layout, or just going as fast as I possibly can (so no item that is out of my way is picked up). And so on. Castlevania: Symphony of the Night is particularly good for this, as the game is a) dead easy, and b) hugely complex. There's a lot of possibilities to try there.

In Cave Story, there's always the possibility that you could just just a few seconds, or even tenths of a second, off of your best time in the Bloody Holyland. Not much of an impulse to try challenges there, since the game doesn't get as boring as quickly. If I ever got tired of trying to improve my time, though, these challenges could be fun to do.
 
May 17, 2005 at 5:09 AM
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Well I'm thinking of incorporating these challenges as well as the speedruns through the entire game and also for the Sacred Grounds in a high score page on the site. Though I'm sure it goes to the Japanese fans for best time in Sacred Grounds so far...

And yeah, I've enjoyed playing through Super Metroid with few items as well, though one of the most difficult challenges is certainly the Legend of Zelda: Quests I & II without ever getting the sword. You can do everything up to the point in which you have to fight Ganon. After you reach Ganon, you have to pick up and use the sword in order to finish him and moving on to the second quest. But this is a hard challenge to do especially if you are playing it on the original NES form, on Game Cube or on GBA as running it on an emulator with save state capabilities makes the experience a little too tempting to cheat.

-SkyeWelse
 
Jun 8, 2005 at 2:41 PM
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gkscotty said:
Only picking up the weapons the game forces you to take - Polar Star, Fireball, Sword and Normal Missile with 10 rockets. (the game forces you to take them before you can fight Sisters, I think. No Snake, Spur, Machine Gun, Nemesis, Super Missiles, Bubbler, Arms Barrier, extra missiles and anything else you's not forced to take.

You don't have to pick up the Missiles. You can just go straight to the exit and skip the Sisters fight.

If anyone is interested, try doing a Low% run. Pick up no Energy Capsules, and only get the weapons that you have to get (Polar Star, Fireball, and Blade). I did it quite a long time ago, and made some recordings of the Monster X, Underwater Core, and Misery/Doctor/Undead Core fights. Those fights are easily the most challenging. I think I spent at least 15 hours trying to beat them. I tried beating Ballos with those, but I could only get up to Heavy Press.
 
Jun 29, 2005 at 3:40 PM
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gkscotty said:
1) Minimal Items challenge - Only picking up the weapons the game forces you to take - Polar Star, Fireball, Sword and Normal Missile with 10 rockets. (the game forces you to take them before you can fight Sisters, I think. No Snake, Spur, Machine Gun, Nemesis, Super Missiles, Bubbler, Arms Barrier, extra missiles and anything else you's not forced to take.
I've managed this - defeated Ballos with a time of about 9:30. (my best in a normal game is 4'59" BTW)
You can skip the Sisters completely by not picking up the missile expansion. You just miss the save point by doing so. The Missile Launcher can be skipped for the entire game.

gkscotty said:
2) Low HP challenge - get through the game without picking up any Energy Capsules, so that you still have a max of 3 HP at the end. (and practically anything can kill you in one hit) I can get to the Undead Core with this, and get him down to about 1/4 health, but I've never actually been able to kill him. I think it can be done... but I'm not holding out for getting though Hell like this. Ever.
Believe it or not, I have done this, and I have beaten Hell in it. I submitted a guide to doing it to the site, but that was only yesterday, so I'm not surprised it's not quite up yet. :o

Here's how I beat the Undead Core. This comes word for word out of the guide I wrote.

Usually you kill Sue before Misery or don't kill Misery at all because her
summons can give you life. Well, we haven't needed life powerups the entire
game. Kill Misery first; her attacks are much more difficult to avoid. Also,
killing Sue first makes her attack with homing missiles which are REALLY
annoying. If you kill Misery, you've pretty much won. Sue is no problem to take
out, and then the Undead Core is almost defenseless.

Now, about dodging attacks:

Misery is the big pain in the butt here. Her Critters can be taken out with a
couple charged Spur shots, and her Imps can be boosted under/over, or even just
killed. The problem is that her attacks require a lot of attention, and she's
not the only one on the battlefield. When she's gone, you can rest much easier.

To dodge Sue, all you have to do is keep moving and not run into her.

Now for the Undead Core. When it opens, it usually reveals a demonic head and
fires bombs. To avoid this, either boost over the shockwaves or ride one of the
little Cores that float around the room. I recommend the latter: doing the
former may distract you enough to allow Misery's attacks to take you out. Every
third time the Undead Core opens, it reveals a mouth and shoots rings of
fireballs to the left. Always to the left. Stand behind the Core when it does
this. If there's no or little space, you'll have to be ready to dodge the
fireballs; again, another opportunity for Misery's attacks to get you while
you're distracted.

When you've taken Misery out, work on Sue. Remember that she'll fall down
several times, but she'll get back up again. Watch to make sure she stays down.
After that, it's time to beat the Undead Core.

When the demon head pokes out, fire a MAX charged Spur shot at it, and it
closes immediately. When it's the grinning mouth, it takes a little bit more
firepower to make it close. Fire a MAX charged Spur shot, and follow up with
Level 2-3 charged shots until it closes. Watch out for the fireballs.

At a lower life, it reveals an open mouth, and this time it stays open for
good. As soon as it opens, fireballs go across the middle of the screen; just
once though. Watch out for these. They take up a big area and can be a bit
difficult to dodge. It also sends out the bombs that the demon head did.
Finally, it uses the same charged shots the original Core used when it blew you
against the wall. Fire Spur shots at it constantly. When it's charging up, get
out of the line of fire. Watch out for the bombs that go across the ceiling and
floor.
 
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