Star Ocean: Till the End of Time --- on PS2 Cancel Glitch FAQ Special Deluxe Edition!!! Now includes NO NO NO NO NO ASCII art!! ... Well okay, there never was any to begin with. Whatever. FAQ created by: Velari (Velari T. Lockheart) Brought to you by: Velari & emeraldweapon You're going to see emeraldweapon's name quite a bunch in this file, mind you. emeraldweapon was the one to first report this glitch, so without him this FAQ never would have been made and heck, maybe the whole glitch would never have been known to all but a select few people. Also, he obviously is a major source as to the information presented in this guide. As such, I felt he deserved to be mentioned at the beginning of the guide. I mean, he may very well have a larger part in this than me. FIRST VERSION! I'm hoping I'll never have to update this >_> But I suppose I'm counting one having to do one major update, which would include fixing errors, possibly including some more suggestions and uses and such. Who knows. But until them, I'm hoping to do things right the first time. ====================== This version? | 1.0, 03/07/2007 | ====================== Velari: Cancel-skipping! >_< emeraldweapon: Skip-canceling! >_< - REALITY CHECK: This file, at its widest, does not contain lines exceeding 78 characters. If the line below this message is fully visible on one line, you will experience the pleasure which is aptly titled "optimal viewing". ------------------------------------------------------------------------------ ===================== LEGAL INFO This file, copyright (c) 2007 Velari T. Lockheart, the author, may not be reproduced in whole or in part outside of printing for personal use only without the author's express written permission, or the express written permission of M. Bekkers in whom I always vest equal rights, authority, and property in, about, and on anything I do and as such is authorised to act on my behalf in any matter I cannot or choose not to involve myself in. Don't make money off of it. Don't do anything illegal. Things like that will result in pain and/or lawsuits. Probably only the latter, though, sadly. This FAQ is ONLY to be found on GameFAQs (http://www.gamefaqs.com/). If you find it somewhere else, people are using it without permission. Having said that, do NOT bother to contact me to ask permission to post or use this file in any public fashion, as you will not acquire this permission. Yes, I am hereby effectively denying you permission, as to spare us both the trouble of going through the entire song and dance. Kindly inform me if you find it anywhere outside of GameFAQs, it will be appreciated. Star Ocean: Till the End of Time and all related names and characters copyright (c) 2003-2004 tri-Ace Inc./SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD. All rights reserved. I am in no way associated or affiliated with tri-Ace Inc, the developers of Star Ocean: Till the End of Time, and SQUARE ENIX CO., LTD, the publishers of Star Ocean: Till the End of Time. ===================== I suppose all of that sounded a bit unpleasant, but hey, I get that quite often, and at any rate it's necessary in this instance. Sorry to put you through all that, but now that it’s over with ... welcome to this Star Ocean: Till the End of Time FAQ! I’m Velari, and I’ll be your hostess. Basic layout: -1- Introduction -2- Basic presentation of glitch and uses -3- The glitch in various versions of the game -4- Exposé on and explanation of the glitch -5- Notes: glitch in conjunction with A.I. control and FAM -6- Visual aid: location of a basic video on the Cancel Glitch -7- Credits and contact info So let's get going! -1- Introduction ------ INTROOOO!!! First of all. I'm going to assume you have a basic undertanding of Star Ocean: Till the End of Time, and the basic flow of a battle. As the name 'Cancel Glitch' implies, this glitch has to do with cancelling, which in turn has to do with using Battle Skills in combat. If you, for example, have no idea what cancelling is or how it works, I'd recommend that you brush up on it. durias42's Battle Fundamentals FAQ would be a good place to look, in that case. So, Star Ocean: Till the End of Time. AKA Star Ocean 3. Or SO3. An interesting and entertaining title made by Tri-Ace. TRI-ACE!! >_< Not Enix, definitely not Square, and not Square-Enix, darn you! Anyway, this game? It has a GLITCH!! -2- Basic presentation of glitch and uses --------- OMG a glitch!?!? YES! This FAQ is about a glitch, one we affectionately refer to as: TEH GILCH!1!eleventyone!!11! Well, okay, actually, I refer to it as cancel-skipping, and emeraldweapon calls it skip-canceling. And because I didn't really want to choose one over the other, I elected to refer to it as simply 'Cancel Glitch' for the title of this FAQ. There may be instances of me calling it cancel-skipping on the one hand, skip-cancelling on the other, the Cancel Glitch on yet another (yes, I've spontaneously mutated and grown a couple of extra hands >_> ), but they all refer to this same glitch. This glitch is kinda fun because on the one hand (more hands!), it can be useful in various ways, but on the other it isn't really overpowered or game-breaking (unlike many of the glitches in the original SO3). Also, this glitch can virtually be triggered all the time. As soon as you earn your very first Battle Skill, you can pretty much use it all the time if you want and understand the workings behind it. It's really not all that situational, which makes it all the more actually usable and practical. ---------- So, this glitch ... What ARE its uses, anyway? Heck, what does the glitch do, even? I mean, you'd like to know why you're actually reading this FAQ, wouldn't you? I'll get into it in more detail a bit later, but very simple put, and the name of the glitch (whichever one you prefer :P ) kinda gives the basic idea away already, it allows you to skip over the execution of a Battle Skill in a cancel chain. Also, interestingly enough, the game will treat it as if you actually executed the skill you skipped. You expend the Fury and HP/MP required, you get the cancel damage boost, you gain proficiency, and so on. What essentially happens is that you execute what is most likely a single frame of the skill you intend to skip, and after that single frame, the character immediately cancels into the next move even if you actually can't cancel after a single frame as is the case with nearly all battle skills. You skip the execution of an entire Battle Skill except for a single frame. So, how about some uses? Well, here we go: - Quick damage boosts. You can skip a move but still get the cancel damage boost as if you had executed it. Meaning you can skip right ahead to the move you really want to do whilst still getting the damage boost. Interestingly enough, by the way, although both of the messages for the cancel bonus percentage will appear, one will overlap the other. So it may look like you aren't getting the bonus you want, but if you examine the situation closely, you may see that one of the messages is overlapping the other. - Not being guarded. Seriously. You can skip over ALL minors in your chain save the opening attack, so you spam only major attacks. And major attacks can't be guarded. Sucks to be your enemy. - Faster leveling of skills. Basically, you can skip near half of the Battle Skills you throw out, so you can reduce the time spent on leveling skill proficiency by almost half. - Save HP/MP/Fury. If you're planning on skipping a move's execution, it doesn't matter whether the move is useful or not. So, it might as well be cheap! Electric Fists, for example, is a skill I rarely see mentioned in set-ups (if at all) on the boards, yet it is an interesting option if you intend to skip it as it is pretty easy to reduce it's Fury cost to 1. 1 Fury for a very quick boost in damage to another skill? Yes please. - Save CP. Why set, for example, Titan Fist to both long slots, which costs 12 CP, when you can also set Fire Bolt and Titan Fist, which costs 8 CP, while through skipping all the Fire Bolts and still be throwing out nothing but Titan Fists? - Avoid risk. Hey, if you're only going to use a move as cancel fodder to boost something else with the cancel bonus, that doesn't mean you can't be hit during its execution, which can mess up the whole thing, not to mention lead to getting hurt. And Aimlessly running into risk is never a good thing. Though of course, if you can just skip the move whilst still getting the cancel bonus, that's one chance you don't have to take. Especially useful against enemies with very fast attacks, obviously. - Adapt to your situation. This one's a tad complicated. But say we have two moves that have us end up in different positions, or have different properties ... I'll illustrate with some examples. Say we have Mirage, with Charge and Avenger Charge. Avenger Charge ends leaving Mirage at quite a distance. Theoretically, you can do Charges whilst skipping Avenger Charge to stay close, and when you're down to just enough Fury to perform Avenger Charge and really nothing more, use that one to do damage, and end up at a nice distance to recover Fury with less risk than ending with a short-range Charge. Also, Avenger Charge is fire elemental. What if you accidentally still have it on against fire-resistant, or worse, fire absorbing enemies? You could just not cancel and defeat the enemy without making use of the cancel bonus to your damage output. Or, you could cancel to get damage-boosted Charges, but skip the Avenger Charges. That way, you still get the cancel damage boost to your Charges, but you won't heal the enemy with Avenger Charge while you're at it. -3- The glitch in various versions of the game -------- PAL, NTSC, and this glitchy-thing ... --WARNING!!-- WARNING!! This glitch, as far as we know, can mostly only be somewhat reliably reproduced in the PAL version of Star Ocean: Till the End of Time. Note that I say "mostly" - from what we've seen it's not impossible to pull off with other versions. What am I talking about? Well, while emeraldweapon and myself were working on figuring this thing out, and later when the basis of this FAQ still only existed as a topic on the GameFAQs SO3 board, we received some feedback, as there were of course other GameFAQs users visiting the topic, wanting to try it for themselves. And we noticed that a some of them were able to get this thing to work, and others either couldn't get it to work, or had a lot of trouble in pulling it off. It wasn't long before we started comparing versions. Both emeraldweapon and myself have the PAL version, and the users who were able to report success in reproducing the glitch were PAL players as well. And, as luck would have it, those who were having problems had the NTSC version of the game. Eventually I made a topic specifically to ask people to look at what we had concluded and to try and reproduce the glitch, and report whether they could get it to work. The results confirmed what we had seen. PAL players could pull it off. NTSC Players either couldn't get it to work at all, or only pulled it off once in a purple-rimmed shiny moon. If a PAL player understands the mechanics of activating the glitch, that player can pull it off consistently. An NTSC player, however, will from what we've seen only be able to perform it rarely to occasionally, at best. So, I'm not saying it's impossible in the NTSC version of SO3, I'm just giving you a friendly warning that at the very least, it seems a lot bloody harder to get it to work - if at all. So, if you're an NTSC player, you may have to have a lot of patience in trying to get it to work, or even concede to finding it too much of a bother to be worth it. Also, NTSC players have reported requiring very specific timing for certain button presses, or even quite intriguing sequences of button presses. However, an actual method for consistent use of this glitch in the NTSC version remains to be found. Please note, by the way, that at this time we don't know about the workings of this glitch in the NTSC/J version of either the original release of Star Ocean: Till the End of Time, or the Director's Cut. So if you have either of these versions, well, you'll just have to try and see. In general, the NTSC version is sold in America, the PAL version is sold in Europe and a couple of other parts of the world (Australia for example). If you're unsure as to what version your copy of the game is, scour the case, discs, and manual. You should be able to find small white bars containing the term "PAL," "NTSC U/C," or "NTSC/J," or sentences to the effect of "this software is only compatible with the PlayStation2 computer entertainment system displaying the PAL logo," or "licensed for play on the PlayStation 2 computer entertainment systems with the NTSC U/C designation only." -4- Exposé on and explanation of the glitch -------- TEH GILCH!1!eleventyone!!11! © SO IT BEGINS The title of Episode 2 of Alias. Best show ever. The basic method of what you do. First, let's specify. "Current Action" designates the attack or Battle Skill your character is currently executing. "Second Action" is what you would normal cancel into after "Current Action," but now intend to skip. "Third Action" is what you cancel into after either executing or skipping "Second Action." 1) you are in the animation of a [Current Action]. 2) during [Current Action], you press and shortly hold the button for [Second Action], just as you would as you were normally activating or cancelling into the skill in question. 3) the game will register and recognize this input and will, when your character reaches the point where he can cancel out of [Current Action], make your character cancel into [Second Action] 4) at any time BEFORE getting to the point in the animation where your character cancels out of [Current Action] into [Second Action], press and hold down the button for [Third Action]. However, do not release the button. Keep holding it down until your character cancels into [Second Action]. 5) during [Current Action], the game registers your input, but because it's impossible to cancel into [Third Action] yet, will not process it. 6) as soon as your character cancels into [Second Action], the game now accepts the input for two reasons - because it is possible to cancel into [Third Action] during [Second Action] - because you've already been holding the button long enough to activate [Third Action] 7) for some reason (GLITCH!!!!!), the game cancels into [Third Action] virtually immediately, after only probably one frame of [Second Action], even if it is completely impossible to cancel out of [Second Action] until, for example, at least two seconds into [Second Action]'s animation. Let's illustrate all that theory with an example. Let's take Maria, and set her up with Magnetic Field on long minor, and Radiation Bots on long major. What we want is a 200% activation of Radiation Bots, and to get there we want to use a chain consisting of normal long minor attack -> long minor Magnetic Field -> long major Radiation Bots. But since Magnetic Field serves no purpose other than as cancel fodder - we're at long range so it likely won't hit anything -, it would be great if we could skip it, saving us time yet still granting us the bonus for cancelling it. So, we do the following: - at long range, press the minor attack button for a normal long minor attack, - during this attack, press and shortly hold the minor attack button, like you would if you wanted to cancel into Magnetic Field normally. - before Maria actually cancels from her normal attack into Magnetic Field, press and hold the major attack button, and keep holding it down until Maria cancels. - When Maria cancels, she will cancel into the 175% Magnetic Field, but, if you're still holding down the major attack button, will immediately cancel out of it after a single frame and into the 200% Radiation Bots we wanted. This example will actually work in the game, granted you execute it both correctly, and fast enough. Is that all there is to it? Yes, that's all there is to it. Well, to the execution, that is. There are, however, a few conditions as to when it will work and when it will not. They make it so that this specific example with Maria should work when executed correctly, but why another combination you might try may not work. The key is distance. As you have no doubt noticed while playing a character will move into a certain position when you use many attacks and Battle Skills. For example, if you want to do a normal attack with Fayt, he will run up to the enemy, and then attack. Why should be obvious - Fayt uses a sword, and he can't very well attack his enemy with it from a hundred yards away. Nor from a hundred metres, for the more metrically inclined. All attacks, Battle Skills, and Symbology in the game work this way. They all have a designated distance from the enemy within which they will activate. If the character is not within this specific range, he will either run up to the enemy or back off from the enemy as appropriate in as straight a line as possible until he arrives within this designated range of distance, and will then perform the action in question. Examples: Cliff can't punch and kick people from a distance. If you're on the other side of the battlefield and tell him to attack, he will run to the enemy, and attack when close enough. Conversely, he and Mirage can learn the Battle Skill Electric Fists. If Cliff wants to use Electric Fists, he needs to be close enough. However, Electric Fists also requires Cliff to be a minimum distance from the enemy. Meaning, if you are right up in the enemy's face and activate Electric Fists, he will first back up a little, and THEN start Electric Fists. Why is this exposé on distance so important? I'll stick to the previously established terminology, but in short: ANY Battle Skill in the game can be skip-cancel(led)-skipped, as long as at the time the character cancels out of [Current Action], she or he is already 'in range' to perform [Second Action] without any repositioning required on the character's part whatsoever. Got that? The character needs to be in position already for the move you intend to skip. If the character has to move, even a pixel, to be in the range of distance where the action can be executed, the action CANNOT be skipped. So, in short: 1) You perform [Current Action]. 2) During [Current Action], you press and shortly hold the button for [Second Action]. 3) Before the actual cancel takes place, you press and hold down, and keep holding down, the button for [Third Action]. Now, when the actual cancel happens, you will, through the glitch, skip [Second Action], as long as the following are true: - You have performed the above steps correctly. - You are still holding the button for [Third Action] when the cancel takes place. - The character, at his or her location at the time of the cancel, does not have to reposition in order to normally be able to execute [Second Action]. That's it. Distance to your enemy in relation to the range at which the action you want to skip is executed is the key. Let's use another example to go about the theory again. Taking the example with Maria using Magnetic Field and Radiation Bots again, why was it possible to skip Magnetic Field in that situation? The answer is that Magnetic Field can be executed at any distance whatsoever. Thus, Maria will not have to move around to be able to execute Magnetic Field, fulfilling the distance condition. Say we had tried the same cancel combo with Gravity Bullet instead of Magnetic Field. Our combo would then be long minor normal attack -> long minor Gravity Bullet -> long major Radiation Bots. Will this work? The answer is no. When executing Gravity Bullet, Maria needs to be relatively close to the opponent, in short range, which is obviously closer than where she executes her long minor normal attack. Thus she has to move, which fails to fulfil the distance condition, and makes skipping not work. Through normal cancelling the chain still works, mind you - at the end of Gravity bullet Maria hops backwards a bit, taking her back to long range under normal circumstances, where she can cancel into the long major Radiation Bots. Let's quickly cover a few more examples, in a quiz-like fashion. Say I'm using Mirage. I have Electric Fists on short minor, and Avenger Charge on short major. I want to do short minor normal attack -> Electric Fists -> Avenger Charge, and want to skip Electric Fists. Can I? No. Electric Fists requires a minimum distance, and Mirage's short minor leaves her so close to the enemy that she has to back off a bit for Electric Fists, which will make the glitch not take place. Mind you, if something happens to push the enemy back a tad before the cancel happens to such a degree that Mirage suddenly does not have to reposition to execute Electric Fists, skipping WILL work. Say I'm using Peppita. I have Kaboom on both short minor, and on short major, and let's assume that although Kaboom knocks back, the enemy doesn't get knocked back so far that he ends up at long range. Will I be able to skip any of the Kabooms? Sometimes. If Kaboom knocks back to such a degree that Peppita has to move before executing the next Kaboom, that Kaboom cannot be skipped. However, if Kaboom doesn't knock the enemy of its feet, if it doesn't push the enemy back far enough for her to have to move, or perhaps if the enemy is in a corner and simply cannot be pushed away far enough, Peppita will not have to move, and skipping will work. Starting Kaboom right in the enemy's face will improve your odds of being able to skip, of course, as the enemy will have to be pushed farther away to end up out of range. Say I'm using Fayt. I have Ice Blade on short minor, and Shotgun Blast on short major. I want to do short minor normal attack -> Ice Blade -> Shotgun Blast, and I want to skip Ice Blade. Will this work? Yes, although you should never do this :P Skipping works, because Fayt's Blade Enchantments can be activated at any distance, thus he will never have to reposition, and they always fulfil the condition needed for a move to be skippable. It's not a good idea to use this chain, though, as using Blade Enchantments in a cancel chain will actually cancel out your cancel bonus. You can keep cancelling back and forth between Ice Blade and Shotgun Blast, but everytime you cancel into Ice blade the cancel bonus percentage will be negated, and the next Shotgun Blast will be a 175% one. If you guessed correctly whether skipping is possible in those examples, or at least understood why, there's a good chance you understand how to get this to work, and will be able to recreate it yourself. Now, obviously, in terms of getting it to work, some Battle Skills are more skip-friendly than others. The absolute easiest to skip are actions that work at any range, and thus don't require the character to reposition. These can ALWAYS be skipped in any situation where you would be able to cancel normally. Examples include: Dimension Door, all of Fayt's Blade Enchantments, Radiation Bots, Magnetic Field, all of Peppita's Dances, Bug Triad, Whirlwind, and of course virtually all Symbology Adray and Sophia can set. A bit harder to successfully skip can be actions that cannot be executed if the distance between a character and the target is too great, but can be excuted without moving once within that distance. Examples include: Kaboom, Dream Hammer, Scatter Beam, Titan Fist, Side Kick, Shadow Wave, Flying Guillottine, Blazing Cannon, Acrobat Locus, Max Shockwave, Fiery Fury. Skills that can be a pain to skip are actions that won't work both when too far or too close. Examples include: Electric Fists, Aerial Assault, Shotgun Blast, Hammer of Might, Air Raid, Air Slash, Fiery Axe. -5- Notes: glitch in conjunction with A.I. control and FAM ========= = NOTES = ========= - A.I. Controlled teammates and the glitch - Simply put, the computer will NEVER make use of the Cancel Glitch. So, if you've set up the Battle Skills for one of your characters in such a way that it would allow making use of skipping, the character will never make use of the glitch while under CPU control. This is of course especially problematic if the set-up you've created is quite useful when making use of skipping, but not all that great otherwise. In this scenario, the character would have a useful set-up when under your direct control, but a subpar set-up whenever you switch to another character and let the AI handle the character with the skip-suitable set-up. Only you can make the currently player-controlled character make use of the Cancel Glitch. Don't expect your teammates to do make use of it, as they simply won't. - FAM and the glitch - Full Active Mode, which you unlock when you've acquire 95% of the available 300 Battle Trophies, basically removes any and all range requirements on your actions. Theoretically, this means that everything in the entire game that can be cancelled, can also be skipped. I don't have Full Active Mode myself. I got over 240 Battle Trophies in my first playthrough and, with that, unlocked everything I cared about unlocking. So I never really consciously tried to earn Battle Trophies after that and actually usually disable collecting Battle Trophies. As such, I don't have FAM, and I suppose I never will have it. However, emeraldweapon reports that, indeed, everything seems perfectly well skippable when in Full Active Mode. He does note that he hasn't tested absolutely everything, though, but that's easily forgiven. There'd be quite a lot to test, and it's more likely that the vast majority conforms to his findings and the general theory with perhaps a few exceptions, than the other way around. So, anyway, as it stands, it seems that FAM makes everything skippable. Joy! - A.I. Controlled teammates. And FAM. And the glitch - When playing in Full Active Mode, keep in mind that not only may a set-up geared towards using skipping not be all that hot when the AI controls the character, but you have to consider the range on the Battle Skills and such as well. This is of course more of a general note than one specifically about the Cancel Glitch, but keep it in mind. -6- Visual aid: location of a basic video on the Cancel Glitch ====================== Visual Aid At this time, I have a video on YouTube, showing what skip-cancel(ing)-skipping looks like. So if you're interested in visual aid, you may want to take a look at it. It's located at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MtNbStyPZ7E I also have other Star Ocean: Till the End of Time videos, so if you want to view them, don't hesitate to visit my profile page at: http://www.youtube.com/Velari Of course, I can't guarantee that YouTube will never revamp their site or the way it works, and that these specific URLs will still work as you are reading this. If they don't, you'll have to search YouTube manually for either me or the vids. If YouTube doesn't exist anymore by the time you read this, well, disregard this section :P -7- Credits and contact info -------- Credits, shout-outs, thank-youzzz, and all that jazz Myself, for making this FAQ, figuring out how to make the glitch, for being the utterly lovable person I am, for in general shaking up patriarchal foundations of our completely assbackwards world, and for being present in and contributing to the SO3 community for going on three years now. It'll be three years in about three months from now. emeraldweapon, for presenting the glitch to the world, for being a half-decent guy, and for looking over this FAQ a few times before submission. Melissa, for being a vital part of my existence in ways most people don't understand. Renske, Angel, Melissa loves you more than anything. Her life is yours. Isabella, we want you <3 We would like to thank Harriëtte, as she's been like a mother to Melissa, and we'd do anything for her. Laura and Rudolf get <3 too. Special thanks to anyone who supports Melissa in her dealings with her condition. Melissa would like to thank Tristan Taormino for reasons that will remain undisclosed. Everyone who makes our time with SO3 in any way pleasant. This includes, but isn't limited to, the following, in no particular order: Lady, Marty, emeraldweapon, Arcadia, Bringy-chan, Sophia, Wolf, Seif, Epyon, RedManySevens, MGSB, CrOnOKiD, buffy, durias, AUNAO, crate, trowa, drkhades, CrossTrigger, MattBlack04, 'Ria, Cap K, MogGuy, Tails (sighting! <3 ), legend, ChronoTwist, ramza, Mace, Shun, wizardmentor, Claude, ICSTARS, Kiro, Bijutsu, amar, Blue Crimson, os3330, james, rock1644, Rock Hunter, printf, ferry, Enigma, Act, Transformr, and of course CuddlyPhoenix and CuddlyTimmie ;) If you feel you should have been in there, but you weren't ... don't blame me, blame the large amount of decent people on the SO3 boards. There's just too darn many of you >_> A double shout-out to the SO3 SSCC community, which consisted of almost exclusively decent people. An unrelated shout-out to the FFT board ;) Special thanks to CJayC and GameFAQs. Special thanks to Tri-Ace for developing the game, and Square-Enix (well, just Enix, really) for publishing it. You need to make better PAL conversions, though. Contact info? Velari.shift-2.tifa.dot.zzn.dot.com, or the Star Ocean: Till the End of Time board on GameFAQs are good places to try at this time.