Friday, March 30, 2012

Donkey Kong 3 high score #6

Almost rolled the counter on my first and only game of the night, 954,200. I know I will be able to marathon this game now as this could have been very well an hour score, I just didn't time it. Progress is coming fast and I'm feeling good about pushing the score up on this one.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Donkey Kong 3 high score #5

Breakout score for me at the CAGDC 7 tourney - 779,800. Very excited about this score - it got me first place on DK 3 during the tourney, which felt great - especially as there were so many world class players there.

I've definitely crossed the hard threshold and now, I should be able to marathon this game pretty easily.

Monday, March 26, 2012

CAGDC Tourney 7 - Logan Hardware, Chicago, IL - March 24th-25th

This last year, Mark Alpiger held his last tourney at Richie Knucklez' arcade in NJ and was looking for a new venue. He called me while I was on my way to pick up a pin with Zespy and asked me what I thought a good location would be. I recommended Logan Hardware as the near-perfect venue. Big city, good public transport, close airport, cheap hotels and a stellar and well-stocked arcade. I put Zespy and Mark in touch and they knocked out the details.

The tourney was held this past weekend and it was a total success. Even the most introverted and quiet among the participants there couldn't help but say how great the place was, how nice Zespy was and how happy they were about the snacks and soda he provided all weekend.

The event drew a number of top competitors in the classic arcade gaming world, including Justin Kvithyll (Zerst on shmups), Hector Rodriguez (WR holder on Return of the Jedi, among others), Eric Tessler (murdered it on DK and DK3) and or course, the great Donald Hayes.

Lots of great titles were included, including my Beastie Feastie, Tetris Plus 2, Return of the Jedi, Dk, DK Junior and DK 3, Scramble, Bump 'N Jump, Gyruss, Tron and many others. I donated the use of one of my candy cabs to play Tetris Plus 2 in, which Justin crushed with a score of 1,617,610 and a Bubbles score of 622,190.

Hector tore up ROTJ with a 1,312,950 score, double what the next qualifier could put up. It proved to be one of the hardest games to qualify on as only 3 people out of 24 qualifyed! I was one of those people (3rd) and Justin was the other (2nd) with Hector taking first.

I did take down first place on Donkey Kong 3, which was my sole goal of the weekend, knocking out a new high score record for me at 779,800 with second place on the title taken by Eric at 770 and change. It was very close and I was pretty happy that I held onto first at the end of the competition. I am planning on getting down some hour long runs and then - maybe - trying to see how far I can go, if I can even get close ot the WR which is 4 million and change.

Donald won the tournament making this the fifth he has won out of 7 entered if I remember Mark correctly, with Hector coming in second place and Justin third. Competitors came from all over, including a number of guys from California, Donald from the east coast and even a gentleman from Alaska, which was definitely the furthest I think anyone has traveled for a CAGDC contest from what Mark said.

It was a fantastic event and Zespy did a great job making sure the games all stayed running. Lots of happy competitors and a happy Mark mean CAGDC 8 will also be held at Logan, something they announced at the end of the contest.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

VIDEO: Battle Garegga - Chitta - G,557.790 - KET (Ketgarelab)

KET has been absent from his UStream channel for a while and posted on his twitter that he's play more and more at game centers and with friends. Bummer that those of us in the West who watched him often just have to wait, but he is dropping new videos on his youtube channel for us - namely this Chitta G-score clear.

It's an impressive run through and from my understanding is just shy of the current WR with Chitta. Her shot looks more powerful than Gain ABC's shot and the curved homing-ness is interesting to say the least - never played with Chitta - I may have to give it a run or two on the new fixed pcb.

It is interesting tht KET does not milk the third stage boss at all in its last form - he's basically giving up a few hunderd thousand K from what I know. Otherwise its a great run and a pretty interesting one to check out - especially as some of the strategies are different from a Gain or Golden Bat run.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Guwange - HDK's Factory 01 VHS - Yusemi-SWY

I had a copy of this VHS, but as the actual VHS tape had Macrovision copy protection, it was refilmed with a camera filming the TV and while its not an actually bad way to do it, I put it on my list of VHS tapes to hunt for. I got it off shmups from snkpowa, right before I bought the DDP Professional lot from sven666.

This was HDK Factory's first release and this tape is the current world record with Yusemi-SWY counter-stopping Guwange. It is an fantastic performance and a pretty amazing accomplishment. Since this is now an XBox Live Arcade download, there are quite a few videos up on youtube for the game, the best of which is Prometheus's Western record at 49 million+. This run basically milks the bosses more effectively and makes for a longer recording, but good watching nonetheless - and the quality of this tape is excellent.

The Blue Label or Matsuri version of the roms are supposed to balance the game better, making it easier to chain gold and making it way harder to gain valuable points from milking the bosses. I did already purchase a set of the Blue Label roms and will hopefully have a Guwange board on its way shortly.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Toaplan Shooting Chronicle DVD superplay

Recently, there was a Toaplan Shooting Chronicle CD + DVD set which collected all the Toaplan OST's and a superplay DVD and it went for something like $190. I couldn't talk myself into buying it as I do not collect shmup OST's and I wasn't going to pay $190 just to watch one DVD.

Luckily, there was a seller on eBay who just had the DVD for sale and I pounced on it. It's three superplays on one DVD - the 4th loop in Kyūkyoku Tiger, a first loop clear of Tatsujin and a first loop clear of the 'Development Version' of Same! Same! Same!.

The quality of the DVD is pretty mediocre and the graphics turn out a bit fuzzy, even on a really good CRT. However, its a cool collection of superplays and the Kyūkyoku Tiger run is stunning, but not without mistakes, which some how makes it all the more interesting.

The 'Development Version' of Same! x3 is pretty much the production version of Same!, but with the first level Tatsujin theme and sound effects, which is pretty weird, but cool nonetheless. All are played through with autofire, which is kind of a bummer, but really, how else are you gonna take down Toaplan bosses without first developing massive forearms?!?

It's a good snapshot of Toaplan's best games - V-V and Batsugun not withstanding - and a cool document to come out 20-years after Toaplan shut their doors.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Raiden high score #2

Got the JP PS1 port about a week ago, right when I got my JP 360 - and this is all I have been playing. It's a fantastic port, feels like its a perfect recreation of the arcade, right down to the need to actually credit up before you play.

I had been playing with the 1 player ship and decided to give the second player ship a try after my umpteenth run this morning and beat my previous high score by like 100K instantly. I died at the middle of the fifth stage, but seeing as how I had never played that stage, I was pretty happy with the result. I know that there are a ton of cheap moments, like tanks firing from the side fields, but I really don't care. I like hard, old-school shmups and this fits the bill perfectly.

Friday, March 9, 2012

VIDEO: Mushihimesama HD promo - Cave

Here is the first preview video for Mushi HD for the JP 360. It's a graphical HD version of the first Mushi title, with the added bonus of the 1.5 Matsuri version Cave sold as a special pcb last year.

I'm hoping that the original arcade visuals will still be in the port, but with the full original game plus Matsuri 1.5, this is a must get - already have a pre-ordered copy on hold with rancor at Tokyo Shmups!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Japanese Kit Kat addiction - thanks rancor!

I'm not much of a guy for sweets - especially chocolate. If I snack, its usually something salty, but after I bought a few things from rancor on the shmups forum from his site, Tokyo Shmups!, he sent in the box a couple green tea Kit Kats and I was immediately hooked.

I bought these from Asian and they came lickity split. The dark chocolate ones beat the hell out of the ones we get here in the states and the other two flavors are just stellar as well. They are about half the size of American Kit Kats and its seems to be a perfect ratio for chocolate to wafer cracker. Plus, Strawberry Tart? You knew that was gonna be good even before I told you so.

Check out rancor's site in the sidebar and get yourself some shmup goodness and get started on that Kit Kat addiction!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Twin Cobra high score #5

I finally sent my Twin Cobra pcb and my Battle Garegga pcb out for repair and got them back on Friday, tested them yesterday and set this new high score on Twin Cobra with the first credit I had played in over a year! 1,187,790, dying finally at area 177.

I made it about 85% through the game, which felt good. I'm sure it helped that I was playing the shit out of Raiden and Raiden II that morning as I just got Raiden Project for the JP PS1. I should really buckle down and credit feed the last section in the game to get some practice in on it. Such a good game - Toaplan forever!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

VIDEO: DoDonpachi Daifukkatsu Black Label Arrange - Ketsuipachi - WR sinmoon

This is a video of the current WR on DoDonpachi Daifukatsu Black Label Arrange aka Ketsuipachi. I'm still learning this game and it is a bit strange using the bullet cancelling/hyper mechanic. I keep coming back and watching this to get little tips on scoring and everytime I do, I find myself watching pretty much the whole thing. He gets about 75% of his score on the TLB, which is kinda of a bummer that its weighed so heavy, but really, its still a fun game and I don't imagine I will ever get close to doing what sinmoon does here.