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The Spring Sega Challenge! Beat the Sega Master System Library in 3 months (81/115)


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3 hours ago, Red said:

What's appalling about that?  The stages aren't very long and, personally, I think it's a lot of fun.

No continues + the annoying Fantasy Zone gimmick of having all power-ups be timed + the annoying gimmick specific to this game that you have to go back to the enemy energy point constantiy. Yet the enemies can choose to park themselves on said energy point, making it impossible to do anything about it if you don't have a weapon, and you can't keep a weapon and hold on to it.

It seemed to me, at least, that you can end up in dead man walking situations where you can't outrun the faster enemies, can't earn enough money to buy the weapons necessary to do something about it, and are blocked from zeroing out the enemy energy point by enemies who camp out on it -- so you burn through all your lives in a manner of seconds.

It'd be forgivable if the game had unlimited continues or passwords for level groups, but the thought of putting a lot of time into the game, only to have RNG decide I'm not going to beat that stage, is aggravating. I guess the idea is that you're supposed to perform brilliantly in early stages so that you have a ton of money to buy whatever you need in later ones, but I don't think the game pulls it off.

It punishes you for not playing perfectly, but doesn't reward you for doing so, if that makes sense. At least in a real shmup, you can hang on to your weapons with enough skill.

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Member · Posted
23 hours ago, bronzeshield said:

No continues + the annoying Fantasy Zone gimmick of having all power-ups be timed + the annoying gimmick specific to this game that you have to go back to the enemy energy point constantiy. Yet the enemies can choose to park themselves on said energy point, making it impossible to do anything about it if you don't have a weapon, and you can't keep a weapon and hold on to it.

It seemed to me, at least, that you can end up in dead man walking situations where you can't outrun the faster enemies, can't earn enough money to buy the weapons necessary to do something about it, and are blocked from zeroing out the enemy energy point by enemies who camp out on it -- so you burn through all your lives in a manner of seconds.

It'd be forgivable if the game had unlimited continues or passwords for level groups, but the thought of putting a lot of time into the game, only to have RNG decide I'm not going to beat that stage, is aggravating. I guess the idea is that you're supposed to perform brilliantly in early stages so that you have a ton of money to buy whatever you need in later ones, but I don't think the game pulls it off.

It punishes you for not playing perfectly, but doesn't reward you for doing so, if that makes sense. At least in a real shmup, you can hang on to your weapons with enough skill.

It's been a while since I last played, but I think my strategy on the tougher stages was usually to only collect a few dots at a time and return to the spawn point constantly so the faster enemies never appear.  If there's an enemy parked there, that's when you buy the cheapest available weapon.  It's possible to save a bunch of money so you can breeze through some of the later stages with the invincibility item.  That said, it can be unfair at times and it's certainly not an easy game, but I don't recall it being too bad.

It does feel like it was meant to be played by two players though.  I'd imagine having one player collect the dots and the other deal with the enemies would make it much easier.  I'm pretty sure you can only get the highest time bonus in a two player game as well.  

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Member · Posted

Kenseiden complete.  I get a samurai ghost feel from this one.  Key to this game is to inch forward a step at a time.  The enemies spawn in more manageable numbers that way.  The bosses aren't too bad, I found flying skull to be the toughest of the bunch due to what I found to be unavoidable damage.  I'll have to watch a playthrough sometime to see if there are better tactics than I came up with on him.

 

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  • Red changed the title to The Spring Sega Challenge! Beat the Sega Master System Library in 3 months (69/115)
  • Red changed the title to The Spring Sega Challenge! Beat the Sega Master System Library in 3 months (71/115)
  • Red changed the title to The Spring Sega Challenge! Beat the Sega Master System Library in 3 months (72/115)
Member · Posted

Power Strike complete.  Played this to death in the early 2000s when I got in to the Aleste series.  The game is generous with power ups, especially on bosses where you can hang back, be patient, harvest points and power yourself up to go in for the kill when you're ready.  

The game can suffer from a lot of slowdown of course when there's a lot going on, but that winds up helping you breathe a bit and collect yourself.  

 

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Teddy Boy complete.  The game loops every 50 levels.  There's also a bonus stage between 50 and 51, so that's where the score difference comes from.  

I'd categorize this as a puzzle game with exceptional balance.  I have to give credit to the devs, there were little details that makes this such a fun and challenging game without being cheap.  Your hit box isn't very large, so you can narrowly escape death and the controls are tight.  The sprite limitation also works in your favor and I exploited it a few times through the playthrough, as if I was standing near any of the dice, I'd move away before killing another enemy.  Collecting enemy drops are critical too in later levels to avoid running out of time, as the drops will eventually start chewing away at your remaining time bar.  Finally, any platform you're standing on will eventually burn up and disappear, this added another fun mechanic to play with to funnel enemies where you want them.  There weren't many card games, but this one is at or near the top of the heap.  

 

 

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  • Red changed the title to The Spring Sega Challenge! Beat the Sega Master System Library in 3 months (76/115)
Member · Posted

Fantasy Zone: The Maze is done.  The discussion the other day about it got me wanting to play again.  I really don't think it's that unfair.  Most of my deaths were my own fault.  Almost every level has a cheap weapon you can grab to stop the fast enemies from spawning or get rid of them if they do.  If you play well the first 30 or so stages, you really don't have to worry about money in the last 20.

 

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  • Red changed the title to The Spring Sega Challenge! Beat the Sega Master System Library in 3 months (77/115)

Wow, a nice big push happening at the end! I tried Spider-Man tonight but found it frustrating -- I need to read the manual, I suppose, though I was able to get to the Power Station at least.

I'm open to going after Shanghai. It appears I might need to replay that one for my own list of beaten games, as I never thought to try my hand at the saved patterns -- I just won a single game and called it done.

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20 minutes ago, bronzeshield said:

Wow, a nice big push happening at the end! I tried Spider-Man tonight but found it frustrating -- I need to read the manual, I suppose, though I was able to get to the Power Station at least.

I'm open to going after Shanghai. It appears I might need to replay that one for my own list of beaten games, as I never thought to try my hand at the saved patterns -- I just won a single game and called it done.

I found Spider-Man to be pretty frustrating as well.  I don't think I'll be going back to it.


I played through one more I'm familiar with tonight.  Ghostbusters is done.  I like the game, but I feel $5000 is a rather skimpy reward for saving the city from The God of Destruction.

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  • Red changed the title to The Spring Sega Challenge! Beat the Sega Master System Library in 3 months (78/115)
  • Red changed the title to The Spring Sega Challenge! Beat the Sega Master System Library in 3 months (79/115)
Member · Posted

We are running out of time unfortunately :(.  Wish I had stumbled across this thread sooner.  

 

Zillion II is down.  Doesn't hold a candle to the first one; it's a completely different game that deviates from the original recipe that made the first Zillion so memorable for me.  Boss battles were totally manageable.  A couple of the bike stages really frustrated me - I've been playing this one on and off for the past few weeks and so I am happy to move on.  

Going to try to get through Lord of Sword now. 

 

 

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  • Red changed the title to The Spring Sega Challenge! Beat the Sega Master System Library in 3 months (80/115)
Member · Posted

Lord of the Sword complete.  This one is a bit of a turd for me.  Tough to play this one after Spellcaster and Kenseiden, as I find it inferior in almost every regard.  If you enjoy an action game mixed with some rpg elements, stick to Spellcaster. 

I've never really enjoyed Lord of the Sword, but you can play through it slowly and it's not overly difficult.  The game is very forgiving as well, so you don't have to worry and restarting from scratch after a death.  

Playing with a map is advised.  Also, there are a few hints that Sega gave away through their Sega Hints service that are pretty crucial.  

This has been a lot of fun guys, I'll see you in the Sega Genesis thread once I get settled in my new place. 

 

 

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  • Red changed the title to The Spring Sega Challenge! Beat the Sega Master System Library in 3 months (81/115)

Thanks, Red, and to all who contributed! I'd be into doing it again next year as a full-year thing. There are a lot of Master System games I want to beat, especially the 3D games -- I figure if I own them, I ought to beat them -- but my job sometimes has me too tied up to play much so 3 months is tough if I'm in a busy time at work.

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