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                           Elemental Gearbolt FAQ
                                    v0.5
                           Last revision: 24/4/99

                             by Jonathan Weeks
                         (jon@animejin.demon.co.uk)

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LEGAL NOTICE
============

Copyright 1998 by Jonathan Weeks. All Rights Reserved.

Although every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the information
contained herein, no guarantee can be given.

You are granted the following rights: 
 To make copies of this work in original form, so long as
   1. the copies are exact and complete; 
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   4. the copies are in electronic form.

 To distribute this work, or copies made under the provisions above, so
 long as
   1. this is the original work and not a derivative form; 
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      this paragraph, and credit to the author;
   4. the distributed form is not in an electronic magazine or within
      computer software;
   5. the distributed form is the newest version of the article to the best
      of the knowledge of the distributor; 
   6. the distributed form is electronic. 

You may not distribute this work by any non-electronic media, including but
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speech. You may not distribute this work in electronic magazines or within
computer software without prior written explicit permission. These rights
are temporary and revocable upon written, oral, or other notice by
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If you would like additional rights beyond those granted above, please
contact Jonathan Weeks.

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Contents
========

Contents...............................................................here
Introduction.....................................................just below
Revision History...........................................a bit further on
Game Mechanics...................................................after that
Scoring.............................................in the middle somewhere
Secret Chalices.....................................most of the way through
Strategy Guide.................................................near the end
So you want to win the $10,000 contest.........................almost there
Acknowledgements..............................................at the bottom
                       
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Introduction
============

This is a FAQ for the US edition of the Playstation game 'Elemental
Gearbolt'. As this FAQ is intended for people who own the game, I have not
included any information that can be found in the manual. Suggestions for
further information to include or more strategies would be gratefully
received.

The latest version of this file is available from GameFAQs at
http://www.gamefaqs.com

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Revision History
================

v0.1 - 19/10/98 - first release

v0.2 -  5/11/98 - fixed lots of typing and spelling errors
                - figured out how the score multiplier works and added a
                  table for it
                - removed the continuation trick, as it doesn't improve
                  your score in light of how the multiplier works
                - added notes on the difference between one and two player
                  modes
                - found out that chalices do have a point value
                - added a scoring table
                - added a level/experience chart
                - added a note on the hit bonus

v0.3 - 23/11/98 - clarified the hit bonus
                - filled in all the blanks in the scoring table
                - filled in all but one blank in the score multiplier table
                - added 'So you want to win the $10,000 contest' section
                - switched to the proper boss names throughout
                - found out that maximum level is 16
                - added a separate note on the conditions required to get
                  the x10 multiplier
                - found the last chalice

v0.4 - 22/1/99  - spotted that there is no score multiplier using the Water
                  Snake
                - fixed some spelling errors
                - a few adjustments to contest section
                - added a note on invunerability mode
                - clarified the relationship between level and health

v0.5 - 24/4/99  - added a note that the $10,000 contest is now closed and
                  listed the highest scores submitted according to 
                  Working Designs

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Game Mechanics
==============

Controllers
-----------

The manual has illustrations for the use of the Standard Control Pad,
Analogue pad, Namco Guncon and Konami Justifier. Other controllers that are
compatible with these are presumably supported.

The one detail missing is the control method for the Analogue Pad. This
operates in a similar way to the standard controller, but in analogue mode
the speed the crosshair moves changes according to the angle of the
joystick.


Levelling up
------------

The trade off screen in-between acts gives you the opportunity to take
bonus points as either score or experience. Beginners are recommended to
choose experience as this advances your level, increasing weapon power and
maximum health so that you have a better chance of completing the game. As
you improve, you should be able to complete the game at lower levels,
reducing the need to trade off and increasing your score.

The maximum level that can be reached is 16. The level chart in the manual
gives the experience required to move from one level to the next, not the
total experience required. Here is a chart of the total experience required
for each level:

   Level     Next lvl          Total
     1              0              0
     2         50,000         50,000
     3        120,000        170,000
     4        300,000        470,000
     5        520,000        990,000
     6        820,000      1,810,000
     7      1,170,000      2,980,000
     8      1,570,000      4,550,000
     9      2,000,000      6,550,000
    10      2,500,000      9,050,000
    11      3,000,000     12,050,000
    12      3,500,000     15,550,000
    13      4,000,000     19,550,000
    14      4,500,000     24,050,000
    15      5,000,000     29,050,000
    16      6,000,000     35,050,000

The level chart also gives the 'Physical Strength' for each level. This is the
maximum health of your character which is displayed in the game as crystals.
Each large crystal represents 100 health and each small crystal represents 20
health. E.g. at level one, strength is 280 - two large crystals and four small
ones.


Invunverability Mode
--------------------

The manual describes an invunerability mode but does not give any details
of the conditions required for it. The only thing that I have been able to
figure out is that it only occurs when a player's health is very low.


Continuing
----------

In normal mode you have four credits, so that you can continue after being
killed three times. Each time you continue your score is halved but your
level is increased by one.


Two player mode
---------------

Two player mode is the same as one player mode except that:

All the enemies (including bosses) have twice as much health as in one
player mode.

You can continue without returning to the start of a level, providing the
other player is still alive.

If all fairies in an act are shot, both players receive the 100,000 point
bonus.

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Scoring
=======

The manual has names, descriptions and point values for most of the enemies
in the first three acts. Here is a complete table of the point values for
all destroyable targets in the game. Enemies marked * are not named in the
manual or game, so I have given a description instead.

All acts
--------
 orb                              10   fairy                           120
 silver coin                     500   gold coin                     3,000
 small potion                     10   large potion                     10
 chalice                     100,000

Opening Act
-----------
 Tyrl                            150   Tiashi                          120
*blue hopping thing              170
 Vidal                           240  *Vidal missile                 1,000
 Saferimniru                     230  *Saferimniru missile           1,000
 Wardom                       20,000  *Wardom missile                1,000

Act 2
-----
*orange walker                   240   Flig                            240
 Tiashi                          120
 Ozle                            270  *Ozle shot                     2,500
 Berge Mill                      240  *Berge Mill bomb               2,500
*thin green flying thing         !!!   Redmag                          180
 Midguld                      30,000  *Midguld spike                 1,000
*Midguld bubble                2,340

Act 3
-----
 Hadeline                        180   Tyrl                            150
 Tiashi                          120  
 Halemod                         310  *Halemod shot                  2,700
*big soldier                     320  *big soldier shot              3,800
*small brown wall thing          190  *wall thing shot               1,700
 Neethog                      36,000  *Neethog shot                  2,500

Act 4
-----
*small beige soldier             280  *thin green flying thing         !!!
*big brown armoured thing        230  *big armoured thing missile    1,000
*big spidery thing               230  *big spidery thing shot        1,800
*small dark red floaty thing     310  *small floaty thing bomb       2,500
 Audmra                       40,000  *small grey spinning thing     2,000
*Audmra shot                   2,400

Act 5
-----
*small rock                    3,000  
*winged flyer                    320  *winged flyer bomb             4,500
*small dark floaty thing         310  *small floaty thing bomb       2,500
*dark blue/yellow soldier        190  *blue ball on pole                50
*winged statue                    50  *brown flying thing              350
*big red scythe wielder          260  *scythe wielder shot           3,700
 Idon                         50,000  *Idon bubble                  20,000
*Idon shot                       750

Finale
------
*corridor statue                  50
*dark blue/yellow soldier        190  *red Tiashi                      120
*red soldier with shield         290  *red soldier shot              3,800
 Maldel                       60,000
*Maldel shot                   1,400  *Maldel column                25,000
 Reftraseal                   70,000
*Reftraseal white shot         1,200  *Reftraseal orange shot        2,000
*final boss                  100,000
*final boss dagger             5,000  *final boss green mist         2,000
*final boss orange shot        2,000  *final boss blue bubble        1,500

!!! - The thin green flying things are worth 240 points if destroyed close
      up, or 1,100 points if destroyed while far away.


The Score Multiplier
--------------------

Destroying consecutive targets without missing a shot or taking damage
increases the 'combo' value displayed at the top left of the screen. When
using the Blaze Phoenix or Thunder Tiger, the score awarded for destroying
a target is multiplied by a factor that depends on the combo value and the
level of the player. The multipliers that occur are x2, x3, x4, x5 and x10.
This table gives the combo needed for each multiplier at each level:

  Level:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9  10  11  12  13  14  15  16
  ---------------------------------------------------------------------
    x2    2   3   3   4   4   5   5   6   7   8   9  10  11  13  15  18
    x3    4   5   6   7   8   9  10  11  13  15  17  19  21  25  29  33
    x4    7   9  10  11  13  15  17  19  22  25  29  33  38  44  50  57
    x5   11  13  15  17  20  23  26  30  34  39  45  52  59  68  78  ??

[I have achieved a combo of 88 on level 16 but I was still getting x4.]

To get the x10 multiplier you must use the Blaze Phoenix at level 1 with a
combo of at least 50.


The Hit Bonus
-------------

Hitting targets consecutively without missing or taking a hit, even if you
don't destroy them earns a hit bonus. The bonus is 15 points per hit,
multiplied by the hit counter, up to a maximum of 450 points (30 hits).
However, there is no bonus when using the Blaze Phoenix, so you must use
one of the other weapons to get the bonus. There is also no bonus awarded
when hitting a chalice.

For example, if you shoot the first Tyrl in the game with the Blaze
Phoenix you score 150 points, but if you shoot it with the Thunder Tiger it
takes 7 hits so you get an extra 0 + 30 + 45 + 60 + 75 + 90 + 105 = 405
points for a total of 555 points in all. If you then go on to shoot the
second Tyrl as well without missing, you get 120 + 135 + 150 + 165 + 180 +
195 + 210 = 1305 bonus points.


Weapon change bonus
-------------------

You get 10 points every time you change weapons. I don't recommend pursuing
this, as even if you take every opportunity to use it, you're not going to
add more than a few thousand points to your overall score.


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Secret Chalices
===============

The manual mentions the presence of twelve hidden chalices in the game.
Chalices are worth finding as they are worth 100,000 points and one of the
conditions of the high score contest detailed in the back of the manual is
that you must find all of the chalices to qualify. Of course, since there's
$10,000 at stake, players are understandably reluctant to divulge what they
know. Luckily, not being a resident of the US or Canada disqualifies me
immediately so I can blab all I want (ha ha!). To obtain a chalice, you
must shoot it twice with the weapon specified, once to reveal it and then
again to claim it. The other weapons will register a hit, but will not
reveal or claim it.


Opening Act : Grieving Angel's Descent
--------------------------------------

About a third of the way through the level, you jump down into the main
part of the city. You then move forward and briefly face left. While you
are facing left, there is a fairy and an orb (small potion) in front of
you. Shoot the door of the building on the left hand side of the screen
with the Blaze Phoenix.

Just before you approach the boss, you jump over a high gate and then pass
through a large open area with two orbs (coins and large potion). Shoot the
door on the right hand side of the building on the left hand side of the
screen with the Thunder Tiger.


Act 2 : Enter the Dragon
------------------------

While making your way through the forest at the beginning of this level,
you come to a small rise, with a fairy and orb (coins) together in from of
it. Shoot the base of the bush to the right of the fairy/orb with the Water
Snake.

Near the end of this level you pass under two bridges and then over
a third. There are now a number of spires in front of you and Redmags in
the water. One of the spires has a fairy in front of it. Shoot just above
the tip of this spire with the Blaze Phoenix.


Act 3 : The Crypt of Despair
----------------------------

Most of the way through this level there is a long fall after which you
pass over three Ari rising out of the sand. Shoot the mouth of the first
Ari (between its pincers) with the Blaze Phoenix.

Immediately before you reach Neethog, you pass over a bridge and then pause
briefly before turning left to face it. During that brief pause, shoot
straight ahead at the centre of the roof of the corridor with the Water
Snake.


Act 4 : Plains of Regret
------------------------

There are several spider-like enemies in the first part of this act. At
one point you pass three of them on your right and then immediately circle
a rock formation to come face to face with the third one. Shoot the area
immediately above this spider's head with the Blaze Phoenix.

After the initial approach to the boss, you turn around and fly backwards
for a while. A fairy appears to the left of a rock formation. Shoot
the gap between the fairy and the rock formation with the Thunder Tiger.


Act 5 : The Palace Ruins
------------------------

After you jump the palace gate you move forward, up some steps, forward
again and then through some trees. Just before you enter the trees, there
are some larger trees on the left side of the screen. Shoot the centre of
the rightmost of these trees with the Blaze Phoenix.

Once inside the palace you pass through two large chambers, connected by
a vertical section. In the vertical section, there are two ledges with
enemies on them. At the second ledge, shoot the middle of the first pillar
to the right of the back of the ledge with the Water Snake.


Finale : Purposed to Perish
---------------------------

The first part of this level consists of two corridors separated by a large
room. At the start of the second corridor there is an alcove on the left.
Shoot the centre of this alcove with the Thunder Tiger.

After defeating maldel you pass through a tunnel and then up through the
roof onto a plain. Before Reftraseal appears, shoot the base of the rock
formation on the far right of the screen with the Water Snake.


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Strategy Guide
==============

General
-------

Weapon choice : Despite the manual's claim that different weapons work
better on different enemies, I have found that The Blaze Phoenix works
best for almost everything. The one exception is using the Thunder Tiger
to destroy missiles.

Coin orbs : To hit all the coins in a coin orb use the Blaze Pheonix and
fire twice, first at the ball and then second at the area immediately above
it. The second shot should hit all the coins as they fly up before they can
scatter. This will not work if you are too close to the orb, so try and do
it when you are as far away from a ball as possible.


Opening Act
-----------

Immediately after the first chalice, you move to the right and then onto a
small bridge with a fairy in front of it. There is a small potion orb
hidden behind the bridge, at the same screen position as the fairy.

While you are fighting the Wardom, hidden coin orbs appear in the two trees
on the right, one behind the Wardom and one that comes into view as you
move back.

Wardom: Just pound on him with the Blaze Phoenix until he blows up. Shoot
other enemies when they appear and use the Thunder Tiger on any missiles.


Act 2
-----

As you rise up to the plateau section, you can see a large, multi-segment
ship flying in the air. This is the Sltole mentioned in the manual, which
registers hits when you shoot it, but appears to be impossible to destroy.

When you rise to the upper level of the plateau, there is a large spire
in front of you. The second time the top of the spire is visible, a potion
orb appears at its tip.

Midguld: Alternate between Blaze Phoenix for the boss, and Thunder Tiger
for everything else. The end of it's tail does not register hits. When it
swims around with only its fins showing, you can still hit it.


Act 3
-----

Near the start, there is a chamber with two fairies. As you move to the
right out of this area, there are two Tyrls behind low barriers. There is a
hidden coin orb behind the right-hand barrier.

As far as I can tell, the Ari are invulnerable and don't register hits.

Neethog: Keep shooting the head/brain continuously and any Hadelines as
soon as they appear. When the boss raises it's arm to swipe at you, you
have to shoot the end of the arm.


Act 4
-----

The most important thing about this act is that the enemies are smaller
than other acts, but take longer to attack you. If you wait until they
approach you before shooting them, you may be overwhelmed, so shoot then as
soon as they appear, even when they are a long way off.

Audmra: Just keep pounding away with the Blaze Phoenix at its central area
until it runs out of health. It blows up when you take out the green sphere
that appears underneath it, but don't forget to wait until you've hit all
the fairies (the last three are in a group together).


Act 5
-----

You overtake three Sltoles during the first part of this act, but as in Act
2, they register hits but I've never been able to destroy one.

Just before you approach the palace gate, you fly past several large
arches. Two of these arches have potion orbs under them. 

When you jump the palace gate, there are two fairies and a small potion orb
on top of the gate and a hidden large potion orb in the trees on the
ground to your right. You only have enough time to shoot the fairies and
one orb, so shoot the one in the trees (unless you have at least 75% health
remaining).

There is a coin orb hidden in the tree to the left of the tree containing
the first chalice.

Idon: He tends to fire at you from very close range, so you have to
anticipate and fire simultaneously to avoid being hit.


Finale
------

The statues lining the corridor at the start of this act can be destroyed.

Red soldiers: These guys have shields that make them invulnerable until
they raise their swords to fire. Time your shots carefully.

After the initial corridor you enter an large room with balconies on each
side. There is a hidden coin orb behind the second pillar from the left on
the far side of the room.

Mardel: When he materialises in the central area, he releases a number of
purple spheres. You take damage if you hit them, so stop firing while they
are on screen.

Reftraseal: This one just lumbers around the screen, firing slow shots at
you. The only point would seem to be to lull you into a false sense of
security before what comes next.

Final Boss: This boss has several attacks, all of which can be countered
with accurately timed Blaze Phoenix or Thunder Tiger shots. Anticipate the
attack patterns and counter as he fires. 


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So you want to win the $10,000 contest...
=========================================

Unfortunately the closing date for the contest has now passed, so the
contest is over. According to the Working designs website the three highest
(unverified) scores were submitted by:

Douglas Quinn    - 49,739,365
Gerald Guess     - 44,142,510
Hector Rodriguez - 44,068,104
 
The secret to a top score is simple - never level up, shoot EVERYTHING
without missing and don't get hit. But if you want to win the contest you
have to be the best, so that's not enough. The winner will also be grabbing
hit bonuses at every opportunity, waiting for enemies to shoot first so
that they can shoot all the shots and missiles out of the air and dragging
all the boss fights out as long as possible. 

Opening Act: Use the Thunder Tiger on the Tyrls and Tiashis where possible,
except where coin orbs are too close. Against the Wardom, get both coin 
orbs, wait until it fires its second missile barrage before killing it and
use the Thunder Tiger as much as possible on it.

Act 2: Use the Thunder Tiger on the orange walkers and Tiashis where
possible. Shoot the Berge Mill bombs, not the Berge Mills. Shoot the
Redmags in the water and the Ozles on the bridges.

Act 3: Wait until the soldiers and Halemods fire before shooting them and
shoot their shots. Shoot as many Hadelines and Halemods as possible, even
the ones that don't attack you.

Act 4: Hit everything, even the targets that don't attack you. It is
important to do this at the start so that the combo value will reach 50
before the first chalice. Remember that the spider's shots are worth more
points than the spiders themselves.

Act 5: Use the Water Snake on the Sltoles and big rocks for hit bonuses.

Finale: Shoot the statues in the starting corridor to maximise the score
multiplier as soon as possible. Time your shots at the red soldiers so that
you hit their shots and kill them at the same time.


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Acknowledgements
================

Most of the chalice locations are taken from various postings to the
Working Designs Discussion Forum (http://www.workingdesigns.com), notably
those of Radhil Trebors.

The contest scores are also taken from the Working Designs web site.

Special thanks to Aaron R <antfarm@wans.net>  for being the only person to
give me any feedback on this FAQ. He suggested adding a note on
invunerability mode and clarifying the relationship between level and
health.

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--
Jonathan Weeks (jon@animejin.demon.co.uk)
Keeper of the uk.media.animation.anime FAQs
Editor of Animejin - http://www.animejin.demon.co.uk