Hydro Thunder By: Zeikier ___________________ Table of Contents I.........................Introduction II........................Legal Stuff III.......................Controls IV.......................Special Moves and Items V........................The Tracks a..............Easy Tracks b..............Medium Tracks c..............Hard Tracks d..............Bonus Tracks VI.......................The Boats VII......................General Secrets VIII.....................Tips and Helpful Hints IX.......................In Closing X........................Credits _____________________________________________ I. Introduction ___________________________________ This is the first FAQ I've written. I've played Hydro Thunder for a long time, and it is one of the few racing games I enjoy playing. I've decided to put my extensive knowledge of the game's secrets to good use. Enjoy the read, and may you learn a thing or two about the game! NOTE: This FAQ is for the Nintendo 64 version of Hydro Thunder. ___________________________________ II. Legal Stuff ___________________________________ The game is copyright by Midway and Eurocom Entertainment Software, all rights reserved and the like. This guide is copyright 2007 by Zeikier, myself, and cannot be used for any public gain. Feel free to print it out, but only for yourself, and not to make a profit. This guide is only to be used on GameFAQs.com. ________________________________________ III. Controls (provided by the game's Controls option) ________________________________________ There are two configurations for the controls in this game. There isn't any customization, but then again there is no need for that, as the controls are easy to remember and very basic. Config. 1 (default): D-Pad/Analog Stick: Steer/Move cursor Start Button: Pause game A Button: Accelerate/Select B Button: Brake/Back C Button Up: First-person camera C Button Down: Distant camera (the camera will be further behind your boat) C Button Right: Default camera L Button/R Button/Z Trigger: Boost Config. 2: D-Pad/Analog Stick: Steer/Move cursor Start Button: Pause game A Button: Boost/Select B Button: Brake/Back C Button Up: First-person camera C Button Down: Distant camera (the camera will be further behind your boat) C Button Right: Default camera L Button/Z Trigger: Accelerate R Button: Brake ___________________________________ IV. Special Moves and the Items ___________________________________ During the races, you can collect two different types of items that can increase your boosting fuel. +4 Boosts: These boosts are blue, and fairly common in the Hydro Thunder tracks. Each one adds four seconds to your boosting fuel. +9 Boosts: These boosts are red, and are a little rarer than the +4 boosts. Each one adds nine seconds to your boosting fuel. Make an effort to collect a lot of each during the courses. Throughout the courses, there are also some hidden boosts. They have the same values as +4 and +9 boosts, but are invisible. Try being adventurous to find some of them (of course, I'll note where most of them are). There is also a special maneuver known as the Hydro Jump. In order to perform a Hydro Jump, you need to have some fuel in your boost meter. While holding the Accelerate button, hold down the brakes and press the boost button to vault your boat into the air. Mastering the Hydro Jump is important for accessing both airborne boosts, and many of the games shortcuts. ___________________________________ V. The Tracks ___________________________________ Hydro Thunder contains a total of 13 tracks; three Easy, three Medium, three Hard, and four Bonus. In order to unlock the Medium tracks, you have to finish in at least 3rd place for each of the Easy tracks. For the Hard tracks, you must finish in at least 2nd place for the Medium tracks, and finally, to unlock the first of the Bonus Tracks, Catacomb, you must finish in 1st place for each Hard Track. Each Bonus Track after that is unlocked from left to right after finishing in 1st on each of them. I won’t give a full run-down of each course. However, I will provide for each track every secret I've uncovered. If there are any secrets in the tracks I missed, let me know. ------------------- a. Easy Tracks ------------------- As the title implies, these first three tracks are easy. But that doesn't mean they're without secrets. Get comfortable with the controls, and begin on your quest for fame and thrills! ____________ Thunder Park The most basic track in Hydro Thunder. Thunder Park serves as a means for the player to learn the basic controls for the game. There are no real secrets besides the occasional boosts hidden behind sharp turns, and the airborne boosts. Make sure to use your boosts sparingly. ____________ Lost Island Unlike Thunder Park, Lost Island presents the player with the first non-circuit course. There are a decent handful of secrets and shortcuts that will help you best the competition. Personally, although it consumes a lot of boost, pursuing and flinging the tour boat is very entertaining. Secrets/Shortcuts: +Before the first checkpoint is a waterfall. You'll soon discover that the majority of the tracks in Hydro Thunder hold their shortcuts in waterfalls such as this one. This shortcut holds a +9 boost, and a +4 boost held over a ramp high above the normal track. +Very shortly after landing from the first shortcut, you'll find a large, very distinguishable orange-ish rock against an archway in the cliffs. If you veer to the left of that rock into the grass, you'll find yet another shortcut which takes you through a cave and into the high mountains across a few waterfalls. You'll find two +4 and two +9 boosts. +At the fourth checkpoint, there is a volcano in the center of the track. If you hit the ramp directly into the lava, you'll get a hidden +9 boost. ____________ Arctic Circle The Arctic Circle is a little trickier than the last two Easy Tracks. However, its bountiful secrets can help you leave your opponents eating your waves. Secrets/Shortcuts: +During the first turn, there is a series of sheds. One of the sheds is lowered to the ground, serving as a convenient ramp over the first checkpoint. +When you leave the cave after the second checkpoint, you'll see a hole in the ice wall. If you Hydro Jump into it, you'll be sent careening down a narrow ice cave, sending you far ahead of your opponents. +Right after leaving the previous shortcut, there will be a glacier with another hole in it. Due to the speed at which you exit the first ice cave, it may be tricky lining up to Hydro Jump through this one. If you can't line up in time, hang a left, lest you lose precious seconds from failing to jump. +After the glacier, there is an area with polar bears. Behind their glacier is a +9 boost. However, it takes a long time to reach it, so it's better to ignore it and get the one on the upcoming ramp instead. +After hitting the ramp over the orcas and reaching the next checkpoint, you'll see an oil tanker to your left behind some penguins. Steer towards the tanker (you do not have to Hydro Jump to get here), and collect the bounty: a hidden +4 boost, a ramp with a +9 boost, and a final +4 boost before hitting a ramp that launches you into the finish line (there are many ramps similar to this one that increase your speed and fix your trajectory, which I will refer to as projection ramps). ----------------------- b. Medium Tracks ----------------------- You've proven your worth to the HTRA (Hydro Thunder Racing Association), and now they have upped the ante, with more secrets beneath the waves. Learn your environment, and steel yourself for the long road ahead! ____________ Greek Isles This track, in my opinion, is rather bland. However, the blandness is overshadowed by a number of useful secrets that hold multiple +9 boosts, which you’ll need if you hope to snag victory from your rivals. Secrets/Shortcuts: +After the second checkpoint, there is a thin waterfall to your left. Behind it is the first shortcut. You'll net two +9 boosts, and hopefully a +4 one if you land from the drop correctly. +After the fourth checkpoint, once you enter the treasure room, there is a fork in the path. To the right is a small waterfall holding a +9 boost. Use a Hydro Jump to get there and you'll hit a ramp onto a +4 boost near the large statue (be careful with the flight, as you occasionally miss this boost). +After leaving the treasure room, be sure to Hydro Jump to get the airborne +9 boost hiding behind the stone block. ____________ Lake Powell While not the hardest course in Hydro Thunder, Lake Powell is definitely the most exciting. You're taken through a series of turns and jumps, with Utah's police force at your heels. You eventually reach a final confrontation with them at the base of a dam, and then you take off on one of the game’s most intense ramps. Secrets/Shortcuts: +Right at the start you're given a +9 boost opportunity. Take the first turn very tightly, and you'll see a ramp that will take you over the stone arch and obtain the boost. It's recommended to try getting the Super Boost Start to make this jump easier (see General Secrets section). +Once you enter the first cave, make another tight turn to get the +9 boost behind the rock. +At the third checkpoint, there are a +4 boost and a +9 one. In order to get both, turn widely before the two boosts, and then quickly turn so that you can grab both the +4 and +9 one in that order. +After the third checkpoint is a waterfall. This leads to the first shortcut in the course. You can get a +4 boost, a +9 boost, and another +4 if you land correctly from the ramp at the end. +Soon after leaving the first shortcut, you'll see a ramp leading to a +9 boost. Instead of that, Hydro jump to your left to find another shortcut containing a hidden +4 boost. +After the shortcut and the fifth checkpoint, you'll confront Utah's police force, ready to take you all down at the dam. In the center of the dam is a large ramp. Make sure to take this ramp to soar over the train tracks ahead to snatch the +9 boost, and to get you ahead of the competition to the finish line. ____________ The Far East So far in Hydro Thunder, this is the only track I know of that has a secret before you normally get boosters. However, this is where the Super Boost Start can really help. Other than that, this track also houses a few more hard to reach secrets that require patience and timing to get to. Secrets/Shortcuts: +You NEED to use the Super Boost Start to get this first shortcut. Right at the beginning you'll see a black tunnel in the mountains. To reach it, you need to Hydro Jump into it. For your troubles, you'll get a +4 boost, and you'll shoot ahead of the ranks very quickly. Afterwards, you're deposited near the ramp with 2 +4 boosts above it. +After the second checkpoint, there are a few drops. Before the first drop, perform a Hydro Jump, then another as soon as you land to get high enough to reach the second shortcut above the beaten path. This narrow secret gets you a +4 boost, and the satisfaction that you got to one of the hardest-to-get-to shortcuts in the game (due to the unpredictable behavior of most Hydro Jumps, it's also better to just jump after the second drop)! +After the fourth checkpoint, while in the festive part of the track, jump through the fork in the track after making the turn. You'll get a hidden +4 boost. +In the last stretch of the course, depending on how much boost you have left, you can either take the ramp and get no boost, or just take the +9 boost and gun it to the finish line. ------------------- c. Hard Tracks ------------------- You're playing with the big boys now! The Hard Tracks live up to their namesake; your rivals are more anxious to nab the gold, so you'll need to fight back and show no mercy. Secrets are plentiful, and the waters are treacherous, so let them know you've earned your place here! ______________ Ship Graveyard The Ship Graveyard can be an exercise in frustration, as its numerous obstacles and choppy water really take their toll on your boat. You'll need to fully utilize each boost power-up in order to make it to victory. Secrets/Shortcuts: +After the first turn, you'll see two large ships. Veer to the left of them to find a handy +9 boost. +After the first checkpoint, you'll see a waterfall behind a pier. Enter it for the first shortcut. Be careful, as your rivals tend to knock you off course if you're careless. +Once you reach the end of the first shortcut, there will be a shed above you on an arch. Hydro Jump to the right of it to get a hidden +9 boost. +When you enter the aircraft storage area after the shed, make a short Hydro Jump over the drop off. If you time it right, you can safely grab the +9 boost hiding on the railing. +After the long drop and the checkpoint, enter the nearby waterfall to find the next shortcut. You'll find a +4 and a +9 boost there. At the end is a projection ramp in disguise (this ramp works in the same way the one in Arctic Circle did; launching you at increased speed in the direction you hit it). Try hitting the ramp facing diagonally left, so you can get close to the +9 boost in the stormy waters. ______________ Venice Canals The Venice Canals are notorious for their myriad tight turns and inconveniently-placed shortcuts (not as evil as The Far East's shortcuts, mind you). You'll need a boat that can both handle turns well, and can go fast enough to ensure victory. Secrets/Shortcuts: +During the first turn, make sure to take it extremely tightly to find a small fence guarding a small shortcut. Crash through the fences to buy a little time. +Before the first checkpoint, you can see a +9 boost inside an arch. This requires a boat that has a high Hydro Jump, but you don't need the boost that badly, as more will come soon. Grab it at your own risk. +Right after the first checkpoint, there is a well-hidden shortcut under the yellow turning lights. It contains a single +4 boost. At the end of the shortcut it forks, and I recommend taking the left path, and then taking the right path at the subsequent fork. +Soon after that second fork, take the right path on the next one. +After the checkpoint after the forks, save some time by Hydro Jumping over the long area of land. You'll be lined up with a ramp with a +4 boost. +While taking the ramp, be sure to aim for the grass in between the turns to accelerate past the other boats (You can still Hydro Jump there if you miss the ramp). +After the tight turn, look for the opening in between two buildings. Drive through to find a +9 boost (another thing to look for while turning). +Once you leave the area with the low ceiling, turn tightly to line up with the ramp before entering the chapel. +Perform a Hydro Jump before the second chandelier to get a hidden +9 boost. +Hang a tight right before leaving the chapel to find another shortcut in a very small opening. +It's your choice whether to take the ramp and get the +4 boost, or just veer right and get the +9 one. It depends on your remaining boost once again. _________________ New York Disaster It's a bumpy ride through the ruins of NYC. You're given limited shortcuts, and must rely on your tact to make it through this post-apocalyptic nightmare safely. Secrets/Shortcuts: +After passing the first checkpoint, look for the checkerboard pattern on the left wall. Enter the opening between the two panels to find the first and only shortcut. Perform a short Hydro Jump to get the +9 boost. Be careful, you may hit the ceiling if you're overzealous. +There's an alternate entrance to this shortcut if you miss the checkerboard pattern. By making a tight left turn, you can enter from the large revolving door to nab an extra +4 boost. +For the sake of getting as much boost as possible, take the left path at the fork to get a +9 boost before the long drop. +When you enter the subway system, stay to the left and Hydro Jump onto the platform in between the two tracks to get a +9 boost (you can go from the right, but the first method is easier to set up). --------------------- d. Bonus Tracks --------------------- After your victories in the Hard Tracks, things quiet down. The majority of these tracks are circuit tracks, which means you'll be experiencing deja vu more than usual. These tracks aren't as difficult as the Hard Tracks (besides Nile Adventure), but there are still a bounty of secrets for you to uncover. ____________ Catacomb Due to the low and narrow paths of the Catacombs, it's a good idea to pick a boat that is small and quick. Secrets/Shortcuts: +This is a circuit track, so remember to use moderation when collecting boosters. +At the first turn you'll see two large pillars of stone. If you drive between them you'll get a hidden +9 boost. +Soon after the ramp by the water, you'll see a thin alcove that forces other boats to turn. If you Hydro Jump in there, you'll cut ahead, and possibly score a +4 boost if your placement is right. +Right after that minor shortcut, you'll see a wide waterfall in a secluded area. Perform a Hydro Jump towards it, and you'll find a +9 boost and be catapulted ahead of your rivals. Be sure to get the +9 boost on the normal path as well so you can fully utilize each boost. _______________ Hydro Speedway The Hydro Speedway is the second Bonus Track, unlocked by finishing 1st in Catacomb. Similar to Catacomb, this is a circuit track, but is in a style more like Thunder Park, with its more basic design. However, unlike Thunder Park, the Hydro Speedway contains multiple figure-8s and tight turns for you to contend with. Secrets/Shortcuts: +Be sure to save a few boosts for each lap. It kills in the long run if you expend your boosts too early, as your rivals will catch up. +If you Hydro Jump into the hanging model of Banshee, you'll get a hidden +9 boost. +At the first fork in the track with the ramps, try to hit the ramp so that you land in the grass for some extra speed. +That fast-moving +4 boost will just be a hassle to deal with later, so be sure to pick it up on your first lap. ________________ Castle Von Dandy The last of the circuit Bonus Tracks, Castle Von Dandy holds the most secrets out of any of the other two. This course is unlocked by finishing in 1st on Hydro Speedway. Secrets/Shortcuts: +When you reach the three way fork with the large silver bell above it, perform a Hydro Jump to get a hidden +9 boost. This is a tight squeeze, so use with caution. +After the silver bell and the subsequent ramp, Hydro Jump over the cemetery to get a hidden +9 boost. If you make contact with the cemetery, your boat will most likely tumble. +Once you enter the castle itself, Hydro Jump through the second window on your right. You'll receive a hidden +4 boost. You can also acquire a +4 and +9 boost here. There will be a projection ramp at the end of this path, so be sure to stay to the right as you go along. +As with the other circuit tracks, save some boosts for each lap for a steady wave of replenishment. _____________ Nile Adventure Without a doubt, Nile Adventure is the longest course in Hydro Thunder, so be prepared for a trip! You'll be taken down the large river, through an ancient pyramid, across the celestial plane, and into the maws of serpentine apparitions. Secrets/Shortcuts: +Although it's tricky, turn sharply to the left at the second turn to get the ramp to the +9 boost. You'll need it for the road ahead. +Make it an effort to collect as many boosts as possible. +You’ve come this far, make use of the experience you’ve gained from your previous races! +After the second checkpoint, perform a Hydro Jump in the central square above the track. You'll find a hidden +9 boost and a shot across a cryptic projection ramp. +When you reach the area with the falling caskets, there will be one suspended from the wall soon after you are advised of a tight turn. This is the only shortcut in the game that is accessed only through a triggering action. You must Hydro Jump over the fallen casket before that wall in order to access the shortcut. You'll nab a hidden +9 boost, and a visible one. +After the celestial plane, there will be a series of twisting forks. Hydro Jump across the middle of each to save time. Each platform between the forks contains a hidden +4 boost (although on the last one it may be better trying to get the +9 boost instead). _____________________ VI. The Boats _____________________ There are 13 total boats to choose from in the Hydro Thunder lineup. However, until you unlock the Medium, Hard, and Bonus Tracks, you only have access to three of them. Each boat has their strengths and weaknesses, such as speed, Mighty Hull activation time, turning effectiveness, and speed while airborne. The information about each boat will be provided in the following way: Name: The boat's name.... First Available: The requirements for getting the boat Appearance: A description of the boat's frame. Basic Description: A brief description of the boat's abilities. Statistics: Various stats will be rated from 1 to 5, 5 being the best. Speed- The boat's potential speed. Boost Deployment Time- How fast the boat's boosters deploy (this is crucial if you run out mid-race). The higher the score, the faster the deployment. Boost Stability- How stable the boat is while boosting (how smooth the ride is as well as how much it adds to the boat's speed). Turning Effectiveness- How tightly the boat takes turns. Mighty Hull Activation Time- The time gap between pressing the Boost button, and the activation of the Mighty Hull. Airborne Speed- How fast the boat will travel while in the air. The Lineup: Name: Damn the Torpedoes First Available: From the beginning Appearance: A rectangular boat with a purple frame. Basic Description: Damn the Torpedoes is a solid beginning boat. It handles its abilities well, and has little weaknesses. However, be sure to maintain a steady amount of boost, as its normal speed is unremarkable. Statistics: Speed- ** Boost Deployment Time- *** Boost Stability- *** Turning Effectiveness- *** Mighty Hull Activation Time- *** Airborne Speed- *** Name: Midway First Available: From the beginning Appearance: A standard speedboat with a white, orange, and yellow frame. Basic Description: Midway is the most average of the Easy boats. It has reasonable stats, but does not excel at anything in particular and takes turns very sluggishly. Statistics: Speed- ** Boost Deployment Time- ** Boost Stability- *** Turning Effectiveness- * Mighty Hull Activation Time- *** Airborne Speed- *** Name: Miss Behave First Available: From the beginning Appearance: A triangular boat with white colors on the sides, and a wide, dark green stripe down its center. Basic Description: In terms of speed, Miss Behave beats the other two Easy boats. While its small frame is more vulnerable than the others, it has a powerful boost, and can easily take flight on the ramps. Use this one when you're confident for first place....at least until you unlock the better boats later on. Statistics: Speed- **** Boost Deployment Time- *** Boost Stability- **** Turning Effectiveness- *** Mighty Hull Activation Time- *** Airborne Speed- *** Name: Banshee First Available: Unlock the Medium Courses Appearance: A primarily green boat with two wing-like projections in the front, and two rudders in the back. Basic Description: At first I never really liked Banshee, mainly because of the really annoying noise it makes while using it. However, when I started using it again, I realized it is one of the best boats in the game, even more so than some of the Hard boats. It handles amazingly, its boost has a solid kick to it, and it has nearly unparalleled airborne time and velocity. The only match to this air time is Cutthroat. For the most part, Banshee's high stability mixed with its spectacular stats make it the best choice for finishing 1st in both the Medium and Hard tracks. The only downside to it is that noise, so make sure to set the SFX volume at least halfway down to make it bearable. Statistics: Speed- **** Boost Deployment Time- **** Boost Stability- ***** Turning Effectiveness- **** Mighty Hull Activation Time- *** Airborne Speed- **** Name: Tidal Blade First Available: Unlock the Medium Courses Appearance: A very thin and pointy boat with a fiery pattern on its hull. Basic Description: Tidal Blade has high potential speed, and can rip through the waves with or without boost (though either way it is safer just to boost...eheh). However, it is also very thin, so expect to take a few hits. Statistics: Speed- **** Boost Deployment Time- ** Boost Stability- **** Turning Effectiveness- *** Mighty Hull Activation Time- *** Airborne Speed- *** Name: Thresher First Available: Unlock the Medium Courses Appearance: A sleek boat with a dark blue paint job and two pointed areas in front. Basic Description: Thresher is a solid boat for those still getting the hang of controls. It has decent stats, and its large frame can take some punishment. However, it has a rather slow Mighty Hull activation time. Statistics: Speed- *** Boost Deployment Time- *** Boost Stability- *** Turning Effectiveness- *** Mighty Hull Activation Time- ** Airborne Speed- *** Name: Cutthroat First Available: Unlock the Hard Courses Appearance: A boat with a jet-like design, a primarily yellow and crimson frame, and a skull on the front of its hull. Basic Description: If Banshee isn't your kind of boat, try piloting Cutthroat for airborne supremacy. Due to its jet design, it can handle the air very well, and it surpasses Banshee in that regard (it has one of the highest Hydro Jumps in the lineup). It also has a faster Mighty Hull activation time than most other boats (a signature trait of the Hard boats). One thing to note, though, is that Cutthroat doesn't have as good speed without boost (it doesn't handle water as well as it does air), and it occasionally takes turns badly. Other than that, it is another great boat for those gunning for the gold. Statistics: Speed- *** Boost Deployment Time- ***** Boost Stability- **** Turning Effectiveness- **** Mighty Hull Activation Time- ***** Airborne Speed- ***** Name: Rad Hazard First Available: Unlock the Hard Courses Appearance: A light blue saucer-shaped boat with biohazard symbols on the back. Basic Description: Rad Hazard is a very unique boat, mainly due to its extraterrestrial shape. It has great initial speed, and has phenomenal boosting power. However (I know I've said this a lot), it takes turns widely, so you can get hung up a lot in the tighter turns. While it may not handle the sky as well as Cutthroat can, Rad Hazard is much more effective when it tackles courses with straightaways thanks to its great boosting speed. Statistics: Speed- **** Boost Deployment Time- **** Boost Stability- ***** Turning Effectiveness- *** Mighty Hull Activation Time- ***** Airborne Speed- *** Name: Razorback First Available: Unlock the Hard Courses Appearance: Basically a powered up version of Midway, with a yellow and orange-red frame. Basic Description: Razorback is quite possibly the fastest of the boats in Hydro Thunder. However, because of its speed, it has extremely unstable handling, and tight turns usually spell doom for the player. Another setback is its small frame, which is prone to being knocked around. It also has the slowest booster deployment of any of the boats, so one has to be extra careful with conserving their boosts, lest they suffer from the horrendously slow delay. If one wishes to play as Razorback, it is recommended that they have a good understanding of each track; anticipation is the most crucial part of Razorback's game. Due to its raw power in speed, Razorback is best used in courses with straightaways and a wide track to move in. Prepare for a challenge if you plan to use this beast. Statistics: Speed- ***** Boost Deployment Time- * Boost Stability- **** Turning Effectiveness- *** Mighty Hull Activation Time- ***** Airborne Speed- **** Name: Tinytanic First Available: Finish Catacomb in 1st place. Appearance: A smaller version of the Titanic. Its rear smokestack has a hidden booster in it. Basic Description: Tinytanic is the longest boat in the Hydro Thunder lineup, so maneuvering it is rather tricky. Its length makes it hard to use its high boost and turning power effectively, but on a wide track it can handle itself somewhat better. It has near-instantaneous Mighty Hull activation time, so use that to your advantage. Statistics: Speed- *** Boost Deployment Time- *** Boost Stability- **** Turning Effectiveness- **** Mighty Hull Activation Time- ***** Airborne Speed- *** Name: Armed Response First Available: Finish Hydro Speedway in 1st place. Appearance: A black and grey colored police boat, with a gunner that shoots at passing boats. Basic Description: As you would expect from police boats, Armed Response has a high initial speed. While its boost doesn't make it that much faster, it is still effective. Unlike Tinytanic, Armed Response has a much slower Mighty Hull activation time, and it takes turns and the air less effectively. Its fast booster deployment makes it useful just in case you accidentally tap out your boost. Statistics: Speed- **** Boost Deployment Time- **** Boost Stability- *** Turning Effectiveness- *** Mighty Hull Activation Time- *** Airborne Speed- ** Name: Blowfish First Available: Finish Castle Von Dandy in 1st place. Appearance: A raft-like boat with two large air jets on the back, and a black and purple frame. Basic Description: Blowfish may seem like a normal boat at first, but you soon realize that it is massive, and it carries a few quirks. For example, it performs differently with its turns depending on if its boosts are being used or not. If they aren't, its turning is rather slow, but it becomes a very tight turner once you hold down the boost button. Blowfish has a pretty high initial speed, and it has the fastest boost power of all the boats. The drawbacks to Blowfish's power are its low Hydro Jump and poor air time. Statistics: Speed- **** Boost Deployment Time- *** Boost Stability- ***** Turning Effectiveness- *** Mighty Hull Activation Time- **** Airborne Speed- *** Name: Chumdinger First Available: Finish Nile Adventure in 1st place. Appearance: A fishing boat piloted by a man and his dog. The dog barks at any passing boats. Basic Description: More of a novelty boat than anything else, Chumdinger is great for the casual player who wants to go fishing.....at excess of 200 miles per hour! While Chumdinger has less-than-stellar speed and boosting power, its great turning maneuverability makes it a good choice for a turn-heavy course. Not only that, but it has the most amusing booster in the game (one wonders where you can go to install a rocket engine in your fishing boat)! Statistics: Speed- *** Boost Deployment Time- *** Boost Stability- *** Turning Effectiveness- ***** Mighty Hull Activation Time- **** Airborne Speed- *** _____________________ VII. General Secrets _____________________ There are not many codes or cheats for Hydro Thunder, but the secrets it does have mostly concern how you start the race. Since the normal start is very painful towards your final rank, here are some ways to improve upon that: Super Start: Holding down the A button as the "1" begins to fade will give your boat a large burst of speed at the race's start. Very useful if you want a quick burst, and don't want or need any boosting power. Jump Start: If you hold down the B button as the countdown begins, and then switch to holding A as the "1" disappears, you'll perform a Hydro Jump at the race's start. This is a lot slower than the Super Start, so it isn't recommended to do this unless you have decent airborne speed. Super Boost Start: The most useful, though hardest-to-pull-off start in the game. Hold down the B button when the race screen loads (you know, when the white text mentioning the bit about the Rumble Pack appears). When the countdown begins, switch to holding the A button when the "3" fades, switch back to the B button when the "2" fades, and finally back to A when the "1" fades. If done correctly, you'll perform a Hydro Jump similar to the Jump Start, but you will also receive a +4 boost! This is very useful for getting an early jump on your rivals, and is the only way to access The Far East's obscure first shortcut. _______________________ VIII. Tips and Helpful Hints _______________________ +Each boat has its own unique abilities, even if my descriptions say otherwise. Experiment with each boat to find which one suits you best (If nothing else, you can use certain boats for looks or as your signature choice). +Although boosts come in large supply, conserve as much as you can. You'll need to keep a steady tank of fuel to stay ahead of your rivals, and if you run out, you have to wait for the boosters to close then reopen if you run out of boost in the middle of a race. This lapse in time can hurt both your final time, and your rank, so use moderation! +Each Shortcut, no matter its length, helps with both your time and rank. However, you don't have to hit every one, especially if one gives you trouble (for example, The Far East has a few that are quite tedious). If you wish to just explore the course normally, feel free to do so; there's no loss if you take the long route! ____________ IX. In Closing ____________ I hope this guide has improved your knowledge on Hydro Thunder, and the secrets below its surface. Although I've given you as much help as I could, the real test lies within your own ability to race the courses yourself. My advice only goes so far, so good luck and happy racing! Make the HTRA proud! I have given every bit of secrets that I know in this game, but it may not be complete. If there is anything you think I might have missed, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. _____________ X. Credits _____________ Credits go to Midway for giving us this great racing experience, GameFAQs for holding this guide, the various guides already on the site that helped me out with some of the secrets, my own experience for the majority of the secrets, my friend for helping me find some new facts about the boats, and finally to the Hydro Thunder Racing Association for providing the game's locales and inviting the skilled players out there to join them!