Author Topic: I ate the high scores  (Read 75531 times)

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #30 on: October 24, 2010, 01:41:59 AM »
Tasty T-Rex Hard: meh.  You beat my time by a fraction of a second.  Now I've beaten your time by a fraction of a second.  (Incidentally, this is one of the few levels in which I find the hard version more fun than the regular version.  Usually the hard versions are just frustrating.  But in "Tasty T-Rex" and "Monsterzillas", it seems appropriate that the enemies are dangerous, and it's convenient to have the exclamation marks helping to keep track of where they are.  I also like the hard version of "Egg Thief": it's frustrating, but adds enough to the ambiance of the level to be worth the frustration.  The other hard levels, I could do without.)

Dinogoo: clearly you're not using the correct strategy.  My guess from looking at your score is that either you're trying to bait the enemy goo to control its size (it turns out to more efficient to simply race it), or you're losing the race to eat the Nothros in the center (it's possible to get to them first, even without baiting the enemy goo).  (By the way, this was one of the levels that made "beat all golds by more than the margin between silver and gold" a cool achievement: the silver is 33% slower than the gold rather than 10%, which means beating the gold by that margin is really challenging.)

In other news, I've been playing the two-player levels (right hand on mouse, left hand on keyboard).  I'm not planning to make a serious effort at optimizing the 2p times, since I'm not ambidextrous enough to compete with genuine two-person teams, and since in general I don't find the two-player levels as fun as the one-player levels (the visibility and movement restrictions caused by the need to keep both goos on screen are annoying).  However, "Encircle" was fun enough for me to spend a bit of time fooling around with it, and I got my score down to a reasonably decent 13.25.  (This makes "Encircle" the third level on which I've managed to halve the gold time.  The others are "Hovershield", whose gold time is set ridiculously high, and "Block Shield", on which my score is legitimately awesome.)

James

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #31 on: October 25, 2010, 05:08:40 PM »
Yes, you are right about Dinogoo, I was trying to bait the other goo to slow his growth. It was much faster to just eat the other dinos. I had tried that before, but never found the optimal order. (I just edged out your time, so I think we're probably doing the same order). I also acquired the high score on I Hate Snakes Hard.

And yes, your time on Block Shield is quite awesome - you must have nudged the blocks perfectly.  :)

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #32 on: October 26, 2010, 01:02:41 AM »
Quote from: James
I just edged out your time [on Dinogoo], so I think we're probably doing the same order
No, that can't be right.  I'd done considerably more play-throughs of "Dinogoo" than I did of "Fast Cats", and your best time on "Fast Cats" was somewhat slower than mine.  If we had the same strategy on "Dinogoo" you wouldn't have been able to edge out my time.

Here's a rough map of the level:
B1 D2 .. B3 A2
.. A1 C2 .. ..
D1 .. .. .. C3
C1 B2 D3 .. A3


My order was: A2, B3, C2, D2, part of A1, Goo.  But now I've found a new, better order.  Maybe now we have the same one, maybe we don't; what's yours?
Quote from: James
I also acquired the high score on I Hate Snakes Hard.
Meh.  Reclaimed.
Quote from: James
And yes, your time on Block Shield is quite awesome - you must have nudged the blocks perfectly.
I don't think you fully appreciate the strategic depth of the level.  Yes, okay, the broad outline is that you use the blocks to push the crocs; no choice there.  And yes, my high score of 13.60 required a really good run.  But it also required making the correct decision in lots of small choices along the way:
  • 1. Should you push the first block rightward before you start pushing it upward, or should you avoid touching it until you've repositioned yourself below it?
  • 2. Should you push the first block straight up and then reposition yourself to its left, or should you rotate it 90 degrees clockwise as you line it up with its hallway?
  • 3. Should you push first block straight down the hallway, apply steady counterclockwise torque as you push it down the hallway, or wobble it up and down in order to confuse the croc?
  • NB. As you pass through the maze, remember to stay to the inside of curves.
  • 4. Should you push the second block straight to the left and then reposition yourself above it, or should you rotate it 90 degrees counterclockwise as you line it up with its hallway?
  • 5. Should you push the second block straight down the hallway, apply steady counterclockwise torque as you push it down the hallway, or wobble it left and right in order to confuse the croc?
  • NB. As you pass through the maze, remember to stay to the inside of curves, and try not to bump into any walls.
  • 6. In what order should you eat the blocks at the end?
Based on my estimation of your speed, precision, and perseverance, I'd expect your high score to be in the 14.80-15.30 range if you had the correct answers to these questions.  A high score of 17.46 means you've probably got wrong answers to all six.

James

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #33 on: October 30, 2010, 03:12:19 PM »
I was going A1, B2, C1, D1, part of D2, then goo.

You're right, I did not take any of those things into account on Block Shield, I was just trying to nudge the block around the corner just right (I figure that would be the biggest overall savings, considering I spend a couple seconds doing it).

And I have no idea what route you take on Teatime!

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #34 on: October 31, 2010, 10:36:57 AM »
Quote from: James
[Dinogoo:] I was going A1, B2, C1, D1, part of D2, then goo.
Oh, that's an interesting approach.  My current strategy (unless I've forgotten it already) is A1, B2, C2, D2, part of B3, goo.


Quote from: James
You're right, I did not take any of those things into account on Block Shield, I was just trying to nudge the block around the corner just right
Incidentally, the second block is easy to get around its corner: hit it at full speed from the top of the hallway, and it'll rotate perfectly into position.  The first block is harder.


Quote from: James
And I have no idea what route you take on Teatime!
Ah, "Teatime".  Reminiscent of a classical labyrinth with its twists and turns.  Practicing that level is how I honed my skills for setting high scores in all the others.

In general, I believe that it's fastest to take the teapots in order; that way you're constantly grabbing one, and never wasting your time passing through empty space.  The key is to pick up teapots by brushing past them, rather than trying to grab them head-on; this lets you stay on the inside of curves.  And, of course, make sure that you're always moving at top speed.  Do it just right and it's possible to get under 16.50 without altering the order.

I managed to shave a second off of that by tinkering with the order slightly at the very start: start with 6&7, then 1&2, then 11&12, then grab 13 and up in order (collecting 3-5 and 8-10 as you pass them later).  But this is less fun than just taking all of them in order, since it loses some of the labyrinth flavor.



I notice that you beat my score on "Monsterzillas Hard".  I've reclaimed it.  "Monsterzillas Hard" has the distinction of being the level I enjoyed the most on my very first play-through.  Eating cities is fun in general, this city is particularly fun since there's food everywhere but its density varies enough to add strategy, and racing the monsters just adds more strategy.  (And "Monsterzillas Hard" is better than "Monsterzillas", since it has arrows to help keep track of where the monsters are.)

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #35 on: November 11, 2010, 06:15:05 PM »
Reclaimed "Bone Maze" and "Hippos and Houses", which James apparently took away from me when making gold medal videos for.

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #36 on: November 15, 2010, 02:57:56 PM »
I've been experimenting with some of the Bonus Future levels that haven't gotten much attention yet.  (I hope James will challenge my high scores for that set at some point.)  I halved the gold time for "Gooturistic", and I got "Hovershield" down under thirty seconds.  "Hovershield" is a very hard level at high speeds, requiring precise control and very punishing of mistakes.

James

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #37 on: November 16, 2010, 01:57:48 AM »
Reclaimed "Bone Maze" and "Hippos and Houses", which James apparently took away from me when making gold medal videos for.
Yes, that is indeed what happened.

I'll give the last few bonus levels a try soon. I've just been busy with a bunch of new projects.

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #38 on: November 16, 2010, 11:53:53 PM »
Still fooling around with "Gooturistic".  I finally got my score under ten seconds (9.95).  That's my fastest score on any current-version level, and my only score so far that's less than a third of the gold medal time.

And I'm still not sure I have the optimum strategy.  In fact, I'm pretty sure that I don't.  I had one run where a bunch of things went wrong and then I somehow ended up with a score of 10.02.  I haven't been able to figure out what happened, but if I could reproduce it, and if the things that went wrong turn out not to be integrally tied to whatever it was that went right, it might be possible to score 9.50 or lower.

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #39 on: December 04, 2010, 01:30:36 AM »
Somebody named "Michael" played through the game and posted high scores.  He crushed my "From Ants to Tanks (Normal)" score, edged out my "Machinelaser (Normal)" score, and came within a tenth of a second of my "Exploding Ants" score.

(Who knows when Michael did this; checking all the high scores lists is a pain and I don't do it very often.  It'd be nice, maybe for TP3, if the world record--just the time, not the name--for each level was shown in the same place as the times needed for gold, silver, and bronze medals on the level selection screen, to make it easier to compare one's own times with the record.  You wouldn't have to update it except when the player clicked "high scores", and it shouldn't be too bandwidth-intensive since downloading the best times for all the levels intuitively isn't much more data than downloading the full list of times and names for a single level.)

Anyhow, I've improved my record on all three levels.  I now hold the top position in all single player levels again.  I suspect that Michael was playing for golds rather than for high scores, and just accidentally beat those two times; hopefully he'll come back and start attacking other scores more strenuously now that he's played through the whole game.  (I can't be the only one who thinks TP2 has replay value, can I?)

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #40 on: December 05, 2010, 01:51:58 PM »
Two new scores today:  I got "Let There Be Goo" under 17.50 (i.e. half the gold time, only the fourth or fifth level I've managed that on).  And I got "Bone Maze" under 2:00 (which is a nice round number, and substantially lower than my previous best).

James

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #41 on: December 06, 2010, 04:59:38 PM »
Well, I tried for a few of those last ones but most of them are way out of reach. Seriously, Hovershield? :)

I wrote a little script to check all current highscore level ranks:

http://tp2hs.dingogames.com/showplayerrank.htm?profilename=ThirdParty

If anyone else wants to use it, replace "ThirdParty" with your high score name (exactly - case sensitive).

It shows the internal level names rather than the normal player-viewable names, but you should be able to figure out which one is which.

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #42 on: December 06, 2010, 06:55:02 PM »
Quote from: James
Well, I tried for a few of those last ones but most of them are way out of reach. Seriously, Hovershield?
Seriously, thirty seconds is a perfectly reasonable time on "Hovershield".  You just have to travel at full tilt.  Same as you do on any level on which you want to get a good score.  If you need to stop and catch your breath, pause the game first.

Keep a shield in front of you at all times.  Don't worry if the shield rotates or if it starts spinning like a jedi lightsaber; as long as you're standing directly behind it, it can protect you adequately even when it's turned perfectly horizontal.  Do worry if it starts drifting vertically away from the center of the aisle; crashing into a car is a good way to get stuck or become exposed to laser fire, and so should be avoided.

For the last segment, note that lasers are much easier to dodge when you're moving in the same direction as they are.  So it's more-or-less safe to abandon the cover of your shield to grab goodies, as long as you're moving rightward whenever out of cover.

Quote from: James
I wrote a little script to check all current highscore level ranks:

http://tp2hs.dingogames.com/showplayerrank.htm?profilename=ThirdParty
Thanks, that'll be handy.

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #43 on: December 07, 2010, 10:16:39 AM »
In honor of your little script, I went ahead and claimed the two player high scores.  (But I didn't bother to optimize my strategies beyond what was necessary for high scores; on many of them I don't even have a gold medal.)  I doubt that I'll be able to hold them against any serious challenge, since I'm somewhat handicapped by a lack of plurality.

ThirdParty

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Re: I ate the high scores
« Reply #44 on: December 12, 2010, 10:32:06 PM »
My "From Ants to Tanks (normal)" score got crushed.  Again.  By the same person who crushed it last time, but who is now calling himself "Bluepenguin" rather than "Michael".  Anyway, he shaved another twenty seconds off of it.  With difficulty I was able to reclaim it, albeit with a margin of less than one second.  I've also reclaimed "All the Way Down" from Bluepenguin.