Joust Video Game Guide By Joseph Janiec Version 1.00 Table of Contents: Legal Revisions Introduction Section 1 - Control Your Mount! Section 2 - General Tips And Tricks Section 3 - Wave 1 Through 4 Section 4 - The Egg Waves Section 5 - Wave 6 And On Section 6 - Basic Blues Section 7 - Intermediate Blues Section 8 - To Kill A Pterodactyl Section 9 - Key Waves Section 10 - Advanced Blues Section 11 - Conclusion ________ \ Legal \ ~~~~~~~~ Copyright 2004, Joseph Janiec This may be not be reproduced under any circumstances except for personal, private use. It may not be placed on any web site or otherwise distributed publicly without advance written permission. Use of this guide on any other web site or as a part of any public display is strictly prohibited, and a violation of copyright. All trademarks and copyrights contained in this document are owned by their respective trademark and copyright holders. This guide is only authorized to be displayed on the following web sites: www.gamefaqs.com Please email me if you find this guide on any other sites or if you wish to post it on your site. You may also email me if you wish to make any corrections, provide additional tips and tricks, or have any questions. My email is joeengineer(youknowwhatgoeshere)cox(youknowwhatgoeshere)net Note: Of course you have to substitute the "@" and the "." symbols in the above address. This is done to prevent spammers from grabbing the email address. ____________ \ Revisions \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~ Version 1.00 First version! _______________ \ Introduction \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ This guide applies to the video arcade game as well as any game emulator directly compiled from the original chip such as the one available online at http://www.shockwave.com/bin/content/shockwave.jsp?id=joust If you are new to this very old game (by video game standards), then the first step is to play a few games to get the idea of how the game works. BUT... Don’t get discouraged! You will die very easily but you will also find that extra lives are obtained easily as well. Let the enemies come to you and flap up as they approach in order to hit them with your ostrich higher than their buzzard. Follow this guide and you will not only be able to build up tens and hundreds of extra lives, but you will also be able to achieve scores in the millions and tens of millions. One quick, but important note. If you are playing an emulator, be sure to configure the controls so that you flap with your primary hand. I.E. Use your right hand to flap if you are right handed. Flapping is much more important to gain accurate control over. Trust me on this one. It’s also helpful to use keys that are further apart. I use the "z" and "c" for the left and right and the up arrow for the flap. Terminology: Each life is also known as a "Mount", as you are the rider of an ostrich. Your enemies are riding on buzzards and come in different colors. They all have names, but I prefer to call them simply by their colors of Red (Bounder), Gray (Hunter), and Blue (Shadow Lord). There is also a not so unbeatable Pterodactyl, which I’ll call "Ptero", and the Lava Troll who you will find to be much more of a friend than an enemy. "Pads" are the silver disks. There are four of them on the screen at first and these are the locations that yourself as well as your enemies materialize from. Geography: The floating lands of Joust are about as bizarre and nonsensical as one would imagine. These lands are known as: Lower or Bottom - Land on the bottom that incorporates the scores. Mid - Small one right in the lower middle of the screen without a "Pad". L-Mid - Vertically at the middle of the screen on the left. R-Mid - Vertically at the middle of the screen on the right and is a continuation of the L-Mid along with a separate section. Mid-Top - Top middle land with a Pad. L-Top - Vertically at the top of screen on the left. R-Top - Vertically at the top of screen on the right and is a continuation of the L-Top. Seems confusing at first but the top ones can be pretty much ignored. The Lower land is by far the most important. __________________________________ \ Section 1 - Control Your Mount! \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Flying: Football has been said to be a game of inches. If that’s so, then Joust is a game of pixels. One pixel, up or down, means the difference between life and death. Practice controlled flight. Don’t just stand in one spot and wait for your enemies. Practice by trying to stay airborne at all times. When one enemy is left on the screen, practice hovering in one spot with only moving up and down a little bit. Know the difference between a flap and a full-flap. Give a quick tap of the flap button and you will bounce up and immediately drop down. Press the flap button all the way down and you float up higher before dropping back down. The difference will be important later but it also helps to understand and get used to the flight dynamics of the game. Practice, practice, and more practice. The dynamics of a flying ostrich take a bit of getting used to. Many players try the game and get frustrated just trying to stay airborne and give up. However, when you get good at the game you’ll find that you spend very little time flying all over the screen. It’s mostly a matter of waiting for the enemy to come to you and flapping a few times to kill them. Moving: You have essentially four speeds. Stepping, Walking, Running, and Fast-Running. There is very little difference between Running and Fast-Running so they are treated as essentially the same. Hit left or right for one tap and you are Stepping slowly. Hit it again in the same direction and you are Walking. Once more, Running and once more again for the maximum speed of Fast-Running. Most of the time you will be either stepping or doing an all-out run. It is very important to know how to Step or Walk without Running. If you are Stepping or Walking, you can stop on a dime. If you are running you will slide to a halt, which is very dangerous in later levels since you also drop down while sliding and this basically says, "kill me!" to your enemies. It is also difficult to control where exactly you will stop when you are sliding. Again, when you are down to one enemy, practice Stepping, Walking, stopping, turning around, and then Walking again without starting to run. Also practice the single step. This is very important for precisely controlling your position for killing pterodactyls and placing yourself in other key positions. Stand still and jog the control quickly left-right or right-left. You should be able to take a single step on one direction this way. Now do the two-step. Right-left, right-left, for two steps to the right. Practice the flying and moving for a little and then your ready for the next lesson! ______________________________________ \ Section 2 - General Tips And Tricks \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Ass first! Get into the habit of killing your enemies with your ass. Yes, I’m serious. Try to wait for your enemy to approach and turn your ass to him. This gives you a better chance of picking up the egg as you kill the enemy. It appears that the extra pixels of your toes hanging down tend to grab the eggs more readily. Think ahead! Look not only at the enemy you are set on killing next, but also plan on which enemy is coming next. Plan on either flapping up higher or dropping down immediately after your current kill. Keep on eye on enemies exiting one side of the screen so you can be ready when they pop in on the other side. When the Gray enemies come out, you have to also keep an eye out for these enemies dropping down from top. You don’t have to kill every enemy that comes along. Think about what will happen next and avoid an enemy instead of killing it when it’s safer. Sometimes you’ll notice that an enemy is going to be coming in at an impossible angle to beat. Sometimes you can charge under this enemy and sometimes you can start flapping early so that the enemy will over shoot above you. This is useful when you are in your home position as you can force enemies to attack too high and bounce off the land above you. You won’t use this trick very much at first but when you get better and can plan ahead more, it will be very useful. Got a loose egg on the screen? Get a few extra point and some practice at hovering. Get close to the egg as it hatches and then start hovering over it as it hatches. Then position yourself to the side of the standing enemy that the buzzard is approaching from. A good position is with the buzzard approaching from the right, to be facing left with your toes directly above the enemies lance. As soon as the enemy mounts, he will get killed and you’ll get points for killing another enemy and hopefully points for catching the egg as well. This is also used to kill extra Pteros as described below. Easy Ptero kill - If all the enemies are gone and you’ve got an egg on the L-Mid or R-Mid lands. Do the hover trick and flap up as you make the kill to avoid catching the egg. Then stand next to the egg. This gets hard to describe but in essence, you have to be on the L-Mid land and facing right soon after picking up the egg when the Ptero comes out. First situation is that the egg is on the top section of the R-Mid land. Wait with the egg to your right. When the Ptero comes out from the bottom, wait until he comes up to just higher than the Mid land. Push hard right to start running. You will pick up the egg, and come into the left screen in time to kill the Ptero! Second situation is that the egg is on the bottom section of the R-Mid land or on the L-Mid land. Wait with the egg to your left. When the Ptero comes out from the bottom, wait until he comes up to just higher than the Mid land. Push hard left and release as soon as you start running. You will pick up the egg, exit the screen and immediately bounce back in, just in time to kill the Ptero! This is especially useful during egg waves since you can intentionally leave an egg in a good spot for this. _______________________________ \ Section 3 - Wave 1 Through 4 \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ For the first few waves, I will go into detail as to how to get through each wave. Wave 1: Go home! You will start out on the bottom. Look at the silver Pad you are standing on and note of its right-most edge. Immediately turn right and Step over until you have your front foot on the right of this edge and your back foot to the left of the edge. THIS IS YOUR HOME! You will be returning here often so get used to it. For now, this will be referred to as simply "Home". This is a very key position. A few steps to the left and if you flap up, you will bounce off the ledge above you and often to your death. Several step to the right, and you are vulnerable to enemies dropping down on your head. Know this spot and learn how to return to it as soon as possible. However, you do not have to be exact as there are a few steps in either direction as leeway, but err to your right rather than your left when you are in a hurry. Now sit at your home position and wait. Red guys will come to you, most likely from the left but occasionally from the right. They will touch down near the edge of the screen and start moving upwards. Stay where you are and wait for them to approach. When they get within a quarter of a screen length, start flapping up so that you are above them when they reach you. Remember; don’t give up if you hit your head on the land above you! Keep flapping and you will continue to rise as you bump out from under the land. This is especially important if they approach from the right. After a kill, grab the egg if you didn’t catch it and go home to wait for the next one. If you get killed and start out on an upper level, just try to work your way home slowly and hit the tops of any rising enemies on your way down. Once home, keep an eye on how the enemies are exiting the left or right of the screen so you know how they will be coming in from the opposite side so you can start flapping your brains out if needed. Intermediate only: Start practicing catching eggs. Try to be just slightly above the enemy while facing away from them when you make contact so that you will catch the egg every time. Advanced only: Wait on the bottom near the left end of the land where the space for the player one score ends. When the enemies come in from the left, full-flap once to kill and catch egg. If enemy comes in from right, run over to the opposite side and do the same. Don’t try this after wave 2 though as it is certain death without the platform over the lava pit. Wave 2: Pretty much the same as wave 1 except with more enemies. Wave 3: I hate this wave! I still die on this one occasionally. In this wave the pit over the Lava Troll opens up but your friend the Troll is still asleep. This means that the enemies don’t touch down on the temporary platform and fly up higher before reaching you as a result. Start out at home position and get ready to flap your little ostrich brains out. You’ll have to flap much higher on this wave and bump along the land above you. A dangerous enemy formation of one enemy a little behind the other will sometimes come along. It is dangerous because as you flap up to kill the first one, the second one will rise higher to kill you right after. If they approach from the left, simply keep flapping up after killing the first and the second enemy will either get under the Mid land and you’ll still be able to kill him or the enemy will bounce back from the Mid land. If the enemy bounces, drop down and get ready for him to come back at you. Keep your eyes open on this wave as sometimes the enemies attack at all angles and you have to be ready to improvise. Another key point is not to start flapping too early. Time it so that a moderate flap rate will get you just higher than the enemy as he reaches you. Get ready to flap more or less if the enemy gets bounced and approaches at a different angle. Wave 4: Same as wave 3 except your buddy the Lava Troll is ready to start helping and the Gray enemies come out. Many times the Troll will grab an enemy just before they clear the lava pit. Be ready for enemies to bounce off and come back in from the opposite side. Also, the most deadly thing to happen is for Troll to have a grip on an enemy that is flapping up high and about to get away as another enemy flies in under this enemy. You expect the enemy to bounce but instead it slips underneath and heads right for you. Watch out for this! If the Lava Troll traps an enemy and all the other enemies are bouncing off each other above you, it is a good time to do a "Lava Kill". Run towards the trapped enemy and do a flap or two as needed to kill them. Allow yourself to bounce off the kill and return to home from the direction you came. Don’t try to catch about the egg and be careful to not attack when they are about to be released. Let them get free or get caught again before attacking. Don’t get discouraged at this point. I get millions of points and yet I’ll still lose a mount or two on wave 3 and 4 sometimes. Intermediate only: Don’t stick to the home position exclusively. As the Grays come straight down start stepping towards them and they will turn towards you. Time it so you are walking towards them and are a few steps away as they touch the bottom and you can flap a time or two to get the kill and catch the egg. Still be ready to get in the home position as the Reds come along though. ____________________________ \ Section 4 - The Egg Waves \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ There are several ways to approach these. They occur on wave 5, 10, 15, and so on for every 5th wave and they are basically free points. My method described here is not the easiest or most efficient for the early waves, but I highly recommend using it exclusively since it is the best and easiest for the later waves. General Description: Start out in the lower left and run right to pick up all the eggs. Moving left, flap up to the Mid land and grab those eggs and quickly flap up the next land and start flapping soon after so you reach the Mid-Top after coming in from the right. Another flap to move up to the L-Top land and hit the brakes as you come in from the right side of the screen. Drop down to the one section (R-Mid) that still has eggs on it. Either pick up these eggs or leave one and do the easy ptero kill. Detailed Description: Start out on the far left edge of the lower land and face right. As soon as the eggs begin to appear, start running to the right. Keep running until you pick up the last egg on the bottom or your reach a point about ¾ of the way across. If there is an egg on the far left, you will have to try to time the screeching stop so you grab the last egg as you stop. Screech to a stop and start flapping and moving left. It is important to start flapping as you come to a stop. Start flapping too early and you have to overcome momentum with flapping and this slows you down. Start flapping too late and will start moving left too early and bounce into the Mid land. Hit the Mid land at a height that allows your feet to touch down and start running. Error to the low side and if you don’t run and just bounce on your belly, hit the flap button twice quickly to get up and run. But quickly hit the brakes a little as you reach the very end of the Mid land so you slow down a little but not stop. While still moving left, flap up to the R-Mid land and keep moving left. Just pick up any eggs on the far right of this land and start flapping again. If your moving full speed, try to slow down a little in air and if your moving slowly, hit left while flying to pick up some speed so you are traveling left at about half speed. Come in from the right side of the screen and set your height to be running when you hit the Mid-Top. Start running left as soon as you hit and do a full flap as you reach the edge to move up to the R-Top. Hit the brakes as you come in from the right side of the screen so your slowed down and ready to drop down on the remaining eggs on the R-Mid land. If you missed an egg or two on the L-Mid land and their mounts have showed up, get them first. Now you can either pick up the remaining egg or two or save one to do the easy Ptero kill. The first few times you try it, you’ll probably bounce off a few lands and miss a few eggs. Keep doing it this way every time and you’ll get the hang of it and you’ll do the moves automatically. As you get better, you’ll be able to hit each level at a full run by quickly flapping between levels. The perfect method it to reach each level so you are running the second you touch it. The higher eggs waves will have some modifications that will be mentioned later. _____________________________ \ Section 5 - Wave 6 And On \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Wave 6: This is the first wave that land disappears (the Mid-Top), but this is not a problem. It’s also another difficult wave. Start out at home as usual and wait for enemies to come down. In this wave and some later ones there is a danger of the enemies bouncing back and forth above you and not dropping down. This is dangerous because if you take too long to clear the wave, Ptero comes out to play. To avoid this you have to do Lava Kills when there is one enemy trapped and no other enemies on the bottom level. Wave 7: More land disappears (L-Top and R-Top), but this doesn’t change anything. It’s pretty much the same as wave 6 except that it is a "Survival Wave" which only means that you get an extra 3000 points if you don’t lose a mount during the wave. Like you’d intentionally die otherwise! The great thing about the survival wave is that the announcement of you receiving or not receiving the survival bonus at the end of the wave is your signal to get ready for the next wave, the Pterodactyl wave. Wave 8: Your first Pterodactyl wave! The screech of the Pterodactyl brings fear to even the most experienced ostrich jockey. But he’s really not that bad once you learn his weaknesses. You’ll die many more times at the hands of a buzzard rider than from the scrawny Pterodactyl. For the Pterodactyl waves you just have to be standing in the correct position to start with. For this wave that spot is several steps to the left of the right edge of the Mid land. Have the tip of your lance level with the right edge of the Mid land. Now wait. As the Ptero comes in, face the direction he comes in from and wait for him to strike your lance. Now comes the tricky part. Sometimes an enemy will come down from the left just as the Ptero is about to strike. The enemy will arrive shortly after Ptero but VERY shortly after. You must flap up once the instant that Ptero is killed and you will kill this enemy. The priority is on Ptero, so make sure you don’t flap too soon or you’ll wind up killed by Ptero and you’ll have a wave full of enemies and a loose Pterodactyl to deal with. As soon as this is done, drop down to home and get ready to do lava kills as needed. After reaching this wave a few times you should now be an intermediately skilled player and should be doing the following: Don’t stick to the home position exclusively. As the Grays come straight down start stepping towards them and they will turn towards you. Time it so you are walking towards them and are a few steps away as they touch the bottom and you can flat a time or two to get the kill and catch the egg. Still be ready to get in the home position as the Reds come along though. Wave 9: No more Mid land! Heads up! No more home spot either! Stand in the middle of the bottom pad this time and keep your eyes above you. Nail the enemies as they drop down and do lava kills carefully as enemies will be dropping down. Don’t stick to the middle spot. Be ready to move the instant that an enemy is on a heading to kill you. Advanced only: This is dangerous but fun. Look at the score display of player one and notice that the left end of the score display is a curved shaped like this ( Align your back foot with the top of this shape while facing right. If enemies approach from the right they will drop straight into the lava! If they are heading right, get out of there! Wave 10: Another egg wave so play it the same as before. Notice that the lands are all restored, as they always will be for the egg wave. If you get tripped up and can’t get to all of the eggs just go to the home position and wait for them to mount and attack. Wave 11 and on: If there is a Mid land, start out in the home position and if there is no Mid land, start out in the middle of the bottom pad and watch for dropping enemies. __________________________ \ Section 6 - Basic Blues \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Starting with level 16 you will start to have a new enemy in blue (Shadow Lords). At first these Blue enemies seem near impossible to beat, as they will easily out flap you in head to head competition. The real key to beating Blues is momentum. Keep an eye on the Blues and you’ll notice their up and down cyclical behavior. The key is to catch them as their momentum is carrying them down below you. The easiest way to kill them in the early waves is the standing kill. It is important to note that the Blues will harmlessly bounce off you if you are just standing on land and they are running towards you. To do the standing kill simply wait for one to approach you while you are standing still. Face away from the Blue and right before the he gets to you do a single full-flap and you should get the kill and the egg. Flap too soon and he will kill you but if you flap too late he will simply bounce off you so be sure to err on the side of late rather than early. In the later waves, the timing of this becomes more and more critical until it becomes nearly impossible. There will be different techniques to use when this happens. However, there is a better, and safer way to kill the Blues. On the bottom level there are several locations to use that allow you to do an easy kill on a Blue as they drop down. These positions are as follows: Position #1: Right between the 4th and 3rd digit in the one player score. Place your back foot above this spot while facing right. This spot is used to kill Blues as they step off the L-Mid platform. Simply wait for them to get about half way down and do a full-flap to get the kill and the egg. Note: This position is also used in the same manner during later waves where the Blues will run off the right side of the bottom land and rise up instead of getting grabbed by Troll. They’ll drop back down in time for you to do another kill with a single flap. Position #2: Position your legs on both sides of the left edge of the pad while facing right. I.E. Have your back leg on the left of the edge and your front leg on the right of the edge. This is used to kill Blues when they are "walking" instead of the slower "stepping" that they start out with. This happens when the bounce off each other. It’s also the default location when they start bouncing off each other and your not sure which direction they will be coming from next. Position #3: Seldom used. The same as Position #2 except your on the right edge of the pad and facing left. This is only used to kill Blues that are walking off the L-Mid land AND there is no Mid land. If there is a Mid land, the walking blues will bounce off this. Position #4: The score area for the second player has a curved "(" shape at the left end. Position the end of your lance above this spot while facing left. This is the spot to kill Blues that are stepping off the R-Mid land. Position #5: Seldom used. At the right end of the score area for player #2 is another curve shape ")". Face right and position the tip of your lance above the ")". This is used when Blues are dropping off right side of the Mid-Top land. Dangerous spot though. Make sure that there are no other enemies around to drop in on you. Position #6: Just a little to the right of Position #5. Place your legs on either side of the ")" shape. This is used when Blues are running full speed off the R-Mid land AND there is no Mid land. If any blues are trapped by Troll or running left, do not stand there! So... Use these positions as follows: Blue stepping off L-Mid - Position #1 Blue walking off L-Mid - Position #2 Blue walking off R-Mid AND no Mid land - Position #3 Blue stepping off R-Mid - Position #4 Blue stepping off Mid-Top - Position #5 Blue running off L-Mid - Position #6 One thing to be careful to avoid is running towards a Blue that is running away from you. They can instantaneously change direction and come straight for you. If you keep running they will just bounce off you but it’s usually such a surprise that your first instinct is to stop. The problem is that when your ostrich is screeching to a stop, he drops down a little and if the running Blue hits you, you’re a goner. Your only hope is to quickly hit the flap button to stop the ostrich from sliding. This is why it is best to avoid any walking while Blues are running around on the bottom. It’s too easy to bounce off them and start running without being able to stop. _________________________________ \ Section 7 - Intermediate Blues \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Mixed formation: One thing to look out for during the early waves is for a Blue and a Gray enemy to be heading for you at the same time. When this occurs, worry more about killing the Gray since the Blue will possibly bounce off you or overshoot above you while the Gray will simply go for your head. Paired attack: Sometimes you’ll have Blues stepping or walking off the platforms at about the same time but from opposite sides. As long as one is dropping a little sooner than the other it’s usually possible to get them both by killing the first one and using the momentum to push you over for the next one. In these situations don’t touch back down but instead, stay airborne and flap over to where you need to be for the next kill. Simultaneous attack: When Blues come down at the exact same time and there is a Mid land, go for the one on the left and flap up against the left side of the Mid land after the kill. The one attacking from the right will either bounce off the Mid land or slip under it and as long as you continue to flap he’ll come up into you. When there is no Mid land it is a little trickier. Flap up to an elevation about where the Mid land usually is and right in between where the two Blues are coming down. Both of them should dip down and come right into you. Lava kills: Do not attack Blues directly when the Lava Troll traps them and never when there are other enemies loose. Sometimes though there will be one trapped and Ptero is out or about to come out so you want to dispose of him quickly. In this case, wait until the Blue is freshly caught by Troll and quickly flap up to near the R-Mid land and hover with your lance level with the R-Mid land but about half an ostrich length away from the land. The Blue will either get away and bounce up into you or will head off to the right. If he heads off to the right, drop down immediately. The Blue will usually over shoot you and land on the L-Mid or R-Mid while running right. This is the perfect time to use Position #6. Blues on the loose: If you're on the bottom and have a lot of Blues bouncing all over at the bottom, watch out for one bouncing on the heads of others and approaching you. You'll have to flap up to beat him or flap early and make him bounce off the Mid land if it's there. Don't try the standing kill on the first one approaching you as this will cause the ones behind him to fly up and come down on you. Instead, try to kill the last one to bounce off of you. Life after death: If you die and materialize at the top with lots of Blues loose, you will want to run to the right but hit the brakes before you reach the end of the land. Then hover just to the right of the Mid-Top land with your lance just slightly above the level of the land. Wait for Blues to bounce up into you but don't stay there long as you want to get back to the bottom land quickly. You may have a chance to pause just to the left of the R-Mid land to kill any blues being released from the Lava Troll. ____________________________________ \ Section 8 - To Kill A Pterodactyl \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Pterodactyl Waves: The first Pterodactyl waves will have a Mid land and the spot to stand is on the Mid land, facing right with your lance tip just past the right edge. When two or more Pterodactyls come out you will have to turn to face the direction they come from while being careful not to start walking. There will also be times when the enemies will attack at the same time as the Pterodactyl. Most of the time you can do a quick flap between Ptero kills and the enemy comes along. Sometimes it will be nearly impossible to kill both Ptero and the attacking enemy and you should always try for the Ptero first. I’ll discuss the killing of a loose Ptero later. Another important point is that there are fewer enemies on a Pterodactyl wave so clearing the enemies quickly to prevent Ptero from returning is less important. When you reach a Pterodactyl wave and there is no Mid land you will need to stand at the left of the bottom with your back leg over and slightly to the right of the "(" shape in the first player score while facing right. This spot if fairly critical. The furthest left pixel of the back leg of the ostrich should be directly over the last pixel that makes up the straight, horizontal line that is the score box. For a single Pterodactyl coming out, all you need to do is face the side of the screen that Ptero comes out of. When more than one Pterodactyls come out during the Pterodactyl waves you will need to take a step in the direction that the first one comes out of. So if the first one appears from the left, take a step left, and if the first one appears from the right, take a step right. If your first move was to the right or the second one appears from the right, your done moving! Just turn to face the direction they come out of. If the first one come from the left and the second one comes from the left, take a second step to the left and then face whichever direction that the third one comes from. The reason for all this moving is that if all three come from the right, you’ll be pushed so far left that enemies will pop out of the bottom pad. If the first two come from the left and the third comes from the right, the first two will push too far right and the third one will kill you. So one Ptero from the right equals one step to the right and one or two Pteros from the left equals one or two single steps to the left. Loose Pterodactyls: When Ptero is cruising on a land above you, you can hover so your belly is just below the land and wait for Ptero to strike your lance. This is tricky and can only be done with few enemies around or during the "slow motion" period after you die. The easier way to kill loose Pteros is in a few key spots. The easiest spot is the same one that is used for the "Easy Ptero Kill" described earlier. Their regular cruising height is perfect so if you materialize on the L-Mid pad, try to wait until right before Ptero approaches before moving toward Ptero in order to kill him. Likewise, if you materialize on the R-Mid pad, try to wait until Ptero is approaching the R-Mid land and run over to kill him. Occasionally, you’ll materialize on the top pad and you may be able to run off the left, bounce off the step in the R-mid land and get a Ptero kill. The other sweet spot is if you materialize on the bottom and Ptero is cruising Left to Right in his middle cruising pattern. Try to wait until Ptero is right before the L-Mid land and take a step to the right of where you materialize on the pad. Ptero should squeeze between the gap in the R-mid land and screech right into your lance! Also, sometimes it’s easier to just avoid Ptero. Keep moving. Don’t spend too much time on the top or bottom before moving. Try to move in the opposite direction of Ptero instead of with him. Whatever you do, don’t try to outrun him! Unless you’ve managed to equip your ostrich with warp drives your not going to outrun Ptero! Advanced Only: Very tricky, but if you materialize on the bottom and Ptero is cruising the bottom, you can barely step off the right or left side of the bottom and hover with your lance at the correct height. If you stay VERY close to the bottom land, the Troll won’t grab you but you must hover at just the right height and not bounce off the land. ________________________ \ Section 9 - Key Waves \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Wave 21: Start avoiding Lava Kills. The Blues are slower in materializing and if you go for a kill on a trapped Gray, a Blue will pop out of the bottom pad and likely kill you. Wave 24: There will be no Mid land. Stand in the same spot that you stand for a Pterodactyl wave with no Mid land. If the Grays approach from the right, they will go straight into the lava. If a Gray is coming down from the left, start walking right immediately. They will not get caught by Troll but they’ll be set for a single flap kill as you approach the bottom pad. Watch out for a slow bouncing one coming down from directly above you. Whatever you do, don’t spend much time in this spot. Let a few die if they are coming from the left and if not, get back into the center. Another pattern that sometimes develops is that two Grays will be close together approaching from the left. If that happens the first will get caught and the other will bounce off of him. If you're still standing on the left, just give a quick flap as this second one bounces to get the kill. This is also the way to play a Pterodactyl wave where there is no Mid land and still Grays. Just stay in that spot if the Grays are coming from the right. Wave 25: At this point the egg waves start getting hard to clear. Don’t worry about clearing every egg. Do the same pattern but leave the top lands alone and go to your home position to wait for them to hatch and attack. Wave 37: First all Blue wave! Wave 54: Your buddy the Troll gets stronger and starts pulling Blues down for you. But the Blues also get harder to do a standing kill on. Wave 60: Egg waves now hatch Blues only. Do the same clearing of the bottom and middle lands and then wait at the bottom for the rest. Another trick is that if there is only a single egg on the R-Top and just one egg on the right side of the Mid-Top, you can get rid of them quickly. Clear the bottom, Mid, L-Mid, and R-Mid lands and then stand on the R-Mid land right between the left edge of the land and the left edge of the pad. As the Blues drop down, it’s just a single flap for the kill. Don’t try this with many eggs left though as they will bounce off each other and attack from the other side. Wave 110+: Blues get hard/easy. See the next section for how to handle them. ______________________________ \ Section 10 - Advanced Blues \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Blues Ballet: After level 110 killing the Blues becomes more of an art than a science. You have to watch the flow of the Blues and learn how to dance with them. Sometime you will lead and other times they will lead! When there is no Mid land, let the Blues lead. Hover your ostrich where the Mid land was and simply glide towards the Blues as they drop. When there is a Mid land, and they are bouncing around on the bottom, it’s your turn to lead. Flap up a little right after they bounce off you to get them floating up and down and look for them to be in a downward slope as they approach. Sometimes you will spot them approaching at an angle that is impossible to beat. If this happens, quickly flap up a little so they overshoot above you and bound off the Mid land. At this point the Blues will be nearly impossible to beat with a standing flap kill unless they are still in the slow mode that occurs right after you die. This is why you have to flap up and get them floating up and down in order to kill them. The good news is that the waves without a Mid land becomes easier. You no longer have to aggressively move after them as they pop up from the center and they will come nearly straight up and into you. The most important way to get through wave 110 and above is to remember that you have to start treating the Blues differently. You must be aggressive in preventing any Blues from running around on the bottom by quickly getting over to them as they drop down from above. Avoid the possibility of losing 10, 15, or more mounts in one wave by focusing on killing at least the first one or two Blues nearest to you when you materialize after a death. Take full advantage of their slower movements immediately after your death and be sure to notice that while they are moving slower, you are still able to move at top speed. Top Kills: One of the hardest things to master, but important in the later waves is the killing of Blues at the very top of the screen. There will be times when Blues will be loose all over the screen and you will materialize at the top or simply get stuck above the bottom with no easy way to get down. You then need to know how to kill the Blues at the very top of the screen. The first step is to learn how to reach the top of the screen without bouncing off of it. Approach it quickly but try to time your momentum so you stop before reaching it. If you too hit it and bounce, flap as fast as you can to get yourself moving upwards again but try not to bounce this time. Once at the top you will have to position yourself so that the Blues will be bouncing up into you. It's usually easier to be traveling slowly in the same direction the blue is approaching you from and either slow down or speed up so he hits you on the upswing. If the Blue approaching is doing very short bounces, it's better to just concentrate on being as close to the top as possibly by using his bouncing point as a guide. Occasionally, a Blue will be almost sliding across the top. He will be impossible to beat so you must drop down and hope for the best. One way to avoid this from happening is that when you are materializing at the top, time your materialization so the Blues are heading away from you at the time and pause a split second before heading for the top. This will cause the Blues to drop down a little and start bouncing more. Lave Troll - Your Best Friend: In a messy wave, where lots of Blues get loose, you will find that your best friend is the Lava Troll. If you die at the bottom and then materialize at the top, it's best to get back down to the bottom and hide under the Mid land if available or just avoid the dropping Blues and let the Troll take a few of them under. This is especially useful after wave 110 since the Troll seems to get stronger and readily yanks the buzzards down faster than you can say "Buzzard Bait". __________________________ \ Section 11 - Conclusion \ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ That's it! I hope you enjoy this wonderful game as much as I have. It's a hard and frustrating game at first, but I hope this guide will help you to learn how to play it well and have fun. Finally, I'd like to say thanks to my two partners in the video game battles from 20 years ago, Joe Malasarte and Lloyd Dahling.