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Iji:

 1 Sabbo, Tue, 21st Apr '09 8:07:19 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Baby don't hurt me!

Sounds good.

So that the opening post is not completely boring, I think I'll say my progress:

Normal difficulty completed. Doing Hard right now. (Anybody who says "That's what she said" will wake up tomorrow with one less eye.)

Ten posters gotten. Five ribbons found (I'm doing this on my Hard run)

Scrambler found Banana Gun found

Pacifist run complete

Sector Z complete. (Not that that's hard. AT ALL.)

EDIT 1 - 22/4 8:07PM AEST: Hard mode done, including getting all them pesky ribbons. I'm not going to try getting all the supercharge things, or whatever they're called.

edited 22nd Apr '09 3:09:58 AM by Sabbo

 2 Brickman, Tue, 21st Apr '09 8:17:47 PM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
I've completed everything except the low damage run (I admit to looking at spoilers for a couple things), which I'm most of the way through but haven't touched in a while. I've gotten far enough with little enough damage that victory is pretty much inevitable; I think I was stuck on trying to find a way to get Proxima's supercharge without enough health to survive the nuke (since I don't think it can be stopped). I know, there's no reason I even should, but I've got damage to burn and I've already gotten as many as I could manage (including, yes, a few that required taking one or two rocket hits—I'm good enough at the game by now that with my weapon trees maxed the risk of taking very much damage in nonboss combat is really, really low). I think it actually is possible if you intentionally jump on top of him right before he finishes charging, losing 1 HP to armor damage but gaining protection from the real attack, but I haven't tested it yet.

If someone has a challenge run idea, I'm all ears, though I may not get around to it for a while.

edit: continuing the discussion of pacifist runs, post contains spoilers: 10 health is obviously the most important stat, since even partway there you'll survive much longer, but it's kinda boring. The bonus for 10 assimilate is on equal footing with the 10 health one, but since 2-9 will do almost nothing for you I'll recommend against. Strength and Cracking open doors which sometimes lead to items or around enemies, so I always get those, but it's not vital. The weapon skills obviously aren't that important for most of the game, but I'd recommend buying some Komato and one assimilate in preparation for the end of level 9, because if you want to not kill Iosa you will need to fight a boatload of assassins who aren't very quick to give up and don't take turns; against them Tasen weaponry's pretty lame but the Komato flamethrower is considerably better than the shotgun and if you can hack the shocksplinter that'll practically do the job for you until your ammo runs out (as long as you're not trigger happy and don't shoot until you KNOW you can hit). And of course, you HAVE to reboot and funnel everything into your weapon skills on level 10, so what have you got to lose. Actually, for that matter, there's a huge horde of ammo a full complement of cyborg stations right before you need the weaponry on level 9, so maybe you should just proceed as normal until right before the end of the level, then reboot and reload everything into getting the hacked version of weapons 4 or 7 and some ammo. Or just take that as an opportunity to do the level 10 rebooting early, and skip the multiple trips through hostile territory necessary to get a devastator on level 10, so right before the end of 9 spend everything you've got on Tasen, Komato, Cracking and however much health you can still afford.

That's not to say that you can't get through level 9 as a pacifist with just the shotgun, but it's a lot harder and you'll either take a lot of damage or spend a lot of time killing assasins with the shotgun, or both.

Finally, don't forget that 10 attack does double the damage you do against the final boss AND improve your horrendous reload time; it works with or without the pacifist's reward because reflected projectiles are still affected by the player's attack.

edited 21st Apr '09 8:36:56 PM by Brickman

Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
First run: Murder everything. Got up to Sector 6, then aborted. Put too many ranks in Strength, not enough in Health, Tasen, or Komato.

Second run: Pacifist. Max ranks in Health, Assimilate, Crack, Strength. Ended up with a kill count of 5, consisting of three bosses and two mooks killed during cutscenes. Dan didn't make it. Will probably try a pure pacifist run later.

Current run: Murder everything except for the Tasen guarding the elevator to Krotera in Sector 3. Currently on Sector 7. Getting all ribbons, posters, and supercharges including Proxima's, if I can. Max ranks in Crack, Tasen, Komato. High ranks in Health, four ranks in Strength, one rank each in Assimilate and Attack. Having low ammo sucks. sad

I'm shooting for Nanomaster, which is absolute hell. Is there a reward for getting this rank at the end? If not, I'm not going to bother.

edited 21st Apr '09 8:45:24 PM by English Ivy

 
 4 Brickman, Tue, 21st Apr '09 8:54:24 PM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
One rank in attack does nothing at all. Attack is scaled so level 10 attack does double damage, which works fine except that almost all the useful weapons in the game do health damage, which is done in small integer values—the most you can do in one projectile is 5 with the nuke, followed by 3 per projectile with the devastator and 2 with a rocket or shocksplinter. Which means that an 11% increase in the damage you deal won't actually show up except when you switch to your wimpier guns (weapons 2 and 6) or the MPIFD or Velocithor. An extra point of assimilate does much more good. Anyways, if you're getting all supercharges and posters you've already probably had to use the reboot once or twice and will in the future. I'd suggest just rebooting when you reach the armory in level 7 (stocked as it is with a quick start on your ammo collecting) and redistributing so you have 5 or so assimilate and 10 Tasen (or don't reboot at all but just spend every point you earn that level on assimilate and keep backtracking for ammo; you don't need that much devastator ammo, especially if you've got Komato weapons as a backup).
Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
 5 Sabbo, Tue, 21st Apr '09 9:23:13 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Baby don't hurt me!
Regarding the power cell (or whatever it is) keeping the blast doors closed in Sector X, I actually did that the quick way the first time around. I saw it say in a logbook that it shoots through walls, and so it just seemed like the obvious solution to me. :/
 6 GG Crono, Tue, 21st Apr '09 9:30:28 PM from Waterbury, Connecticut
The Torterra Moves!
I'll say right now what I've said about Iji many times before; Few games have ever given me such an emotional kidney punch. I can't bring myself to play anything but pacifist runs anymore, and even that takes some serious psyching up.

edited 21st Apr '09 9:35:31 PM by GG Crono

"Honesty is the best policy but insanity is a better defense."
 7 Sabbo, Tue, 21st Apr '09 9:36:49 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Baby don't hurt me!
I'll play any run just to get to the ending credits' music.

(And yes, I know I could get the music through the sound test, but it's more fun to do it after beatng the game.)
 8 Brickman, Tue, 21st Apr '09 9:57:55 PM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
I was touched by the story too, especially (as I've already said) by the fact that he still gave a hopeful (nobody gets happy happy, but hopeful) ending even if you didn't play as a pacifist. I was really expecting things to go to hell at the end if you went the whole game on a rampage. However, it didn't escape me, and still bugs me, that the choice to be a pacifist has such a trivial effect on events. The bosses still die even if not by your hand (the exception being the one the player would most like to kill), you/re still blamed for the deaths, the Tasen are still wiped out (three people survive, but the millions of others still feel more important; I suppose we can take solace in the likelihood that somewhere some others managed to hide as well), Tor still commits suicide. The only real difference is that there are going to be a few hundred foot soldiers who are spared, but even with that the Tasen ones die anyways. On the other hand, maybe that's how it should be; a reversal of the usual rules against killing. The leaders who were going to die still die, and that's reasonable, but sparing the countless mooks is the difference between a good hero and a flawed one, even if they don't all make a difference in the course of the war. I'm sure a lot of aliens got to go home to whatever sort of families they have in a pacifist run who would have been flattened by Iji in a normal run. Is that alone worth enough to make up for her decisions not changing the course of events on a large scale?
Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
Sapient Blob of Tofu
Well yes, I must say I'm not terribly miffed at the way that playing it as a pacifist doesn't change an awful lot.

I mean, the Tasen were never out looking for a fight, but look what ended up happening to them anyway?

In the end, when you've caught the attention of a race of Omnicidal Maniacs pacifism isn't going to do much to change things. Just ask the Tasen...oh wait that's right. You can't!

Then again, I'm a hardcore Spore player and we all learnt that one the hard way. Especially those early adopters who played before the first patch.
Again with the data mining, dear Aunt?
 10 Sabbo, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 3:11:07 AM from Australia Relationship Status: Baby don't hurt me!
Does anybody know how many levels "Hero 3D" has?
Sapient Blob of Tofu
For people who get shot at a lot, the Health 10 + Assimilate 10 combo is a good one.

That said, I might look into more strength next time. Being able to one-hit kill enemies with a kick seems pretty sweet.

EDIT: It's an interesting side effect of making the game playable on Ultimortal level that one can tell if one's going in the right direction by whether a shield wall requires only level 1 strength to kick through.

edited 22nd Apr '09 4:14:57 AM by Korgmeister

Again with the data mining, dear Aunt?
 12 Brickman, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 5:39:40 AM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
It is. Same with crackable doors. However, there's often more than one "right" direction, and the wrong direction usually involves stockpiles of ammo and health.
Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
 13 Pacific, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 8:06:03 AM from da beach house
Oh Yeah?
hurrah! I've been waiting for a topic like this (I'm a fan, if you couldn't tell)

possibly a Major Major spoiler for people who want to hunt the secrets: has anyone else found that weird dark room in sector 7? there's a lot of logbooks in there that go into quite a lot of detail.

I'm also impressed by just how much there is in this game, despite how small it is. the same levels can pose an entirely different challenge depending on what skills you upgrade, and on top of that there's all the extras, and combinations of each mode (for instance, sudden death + poster + pacifist) and on top of that, the multiple ways to play through the story itself. I like how it's not really possible to get everything on a single playthrough.

edited 22nd Apr '09 8:17:47 AM by Pacific

 14 Sabbo, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 8:27:43 AM from Australia Relationship Status: Baby don't hurt me!
I know of the thing in Sector 7. I don't particularly like one of the things there though. Namely how it mentions breaking all the ceiling lights in Sector 1. Damn that's hard. Maybe even impossible. <_<

.

On a different point, I just attempted an Extreme pacifist run. And found myself halfway through Sector X with only 22 points to spend.

Damn.
 15 Kyler Thatch, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 8:37:32 AM Relationship Status: Don't hug me; I'm scared
literary masochist
Oddly enough, the higher difficulties seem to encourage pacifism. It's like it becomes too much of a bother trying to kill the mooks, so in the end you just run past them all and hope they don't shoot you.
I don't care, I'm still free
You can't take the sky from me
 16 Brickman, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 2:56:36 PM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
What Kyler Thatch says is the truth. Especially those goddamn Komato berserkers. They're immune to almost every weapon that does significant damage. If you go for the hyper pulse cannon (or whatever the alternate mode for weapon 5 is) and get your strength to an appropriate level killing them becomes easier and more fun, since a frontal assault finally becomes reinstated as a viable option.

Hmm. Maybe I should try a "Hyper pulse only" run on extreme, just for fun. It's not like the weapons you use most of the time so it should stave off any repetitiveness in combat for a while, and when it fails it's still a quick frontal assault rather than trading rockets.
Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
 17 Sabbo, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 5:14:59 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Baby don't hurt me!
The higher difficulties may encourage pacifism, but to get a perfect pacifist run on Extreme is a work of effort. Excluding supercharges (or whatever they're called), you can only get 30 points - exactly the amount needed for a pacifist run. And odds are you'll only get one or two supercharges throughout the game anyway.
 18 Brickman, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 5:22:30 PM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
Wrong. Since the first point of every skill is free, it takes 27 skill points to avoid Asha, not 30. That leaves you with a health stat of four, aka eight hit points. You can survive anything at least twice. And since you don't care about ammo, you can make that switch via rebooting right before the end of level nine or even right before you need to use the Velocithor, then immediately switch back once you've used it. Beating the game as a total pacifist on extreme without using nanofield reboot a single time, now THAT would be the accomplishment; all that firepower and you're only allowed to use it on assasins and bosses, while your health stat lingers at less than half full and your strength and assimilate can't go anywhere (and with no assimilate, you'll barely get any use out of your weapons during boss fights either).

Hmm. Tempting... Teeeeeempting...

(Or were you assuming no reboots as a baseline?)

edit As for supercharges, if you're investing solely in health and weaponry you can easily get the charge from level 2 or 3, though I'm not sure you can get both. Four would require a rocket jump if you have no strength but is otherwise a freebie in any run. Five only requires high weapon skills. Six is the same as five. Seven's out of reach, eight is impossible, nine is all but required. Ten is impossible. I don't even know where the level one supercharge is ([spoiler:unless it was inside Sector Z, but that feels like cheating), but lets pretend it's unreachable. That's 5 supercharges, for a total of 35 possible points—enough to get the velocithor and a health stat of 9. Hmm, that actually sounds rather boring again. Maybe if I make a point of limiting myself to health being half my sector number anyways (5 total) and throw the extra needlessly into assimilate? Re-edit: 5 points in Tasen, one in health, 2 in Komato, that leaves two for cracking. Nope, you can't get both the level two and the level three supercharges on extreme mode unless you reboot. The level two itself is only barely possible, requiring every point be devoted to reaching it. 3 is a cinch by itself. 5 requires spending 17 points; you have 15 from leveling by that point, but getting the level 3 charge will eat two of the necessary points and getting the level 2 or 4 requires one (health for the rocket jumps). Thus it's impossible. 6 also requires 17 points, but now you've got 18 from leveling plus two supercharges equals 19. 3 and 4 don't overlap their requirements while 2 and 4 do. So the only possible path is 2, then 4, then 6, then 9. That's four charges, and your health cannot rise above level 3 (six HP) until you reach sector 7. Suddenly it sounds interesting again.

edited 22nd Apr '09 5:42:24 PM by Brickman

Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
 19 Sabbo, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 5:41:36 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Baby don't hurt me!
Ah forgot that. (It would be crazy to go without recharges on a pacifist run. >_<)

And the supercharge on Sector 1 requires a strength of 4. Gettable on Extreme if you don't mind recharging.
 20 Brickman, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 5:47:03 PM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
Yeah, so as I just worked out in my post, only five can be reached at all in extreme mode without rebooting; the level 5 charge would be possible if you had two of the three before it but hadn't been forced to spend any points to reach one of those. Two of the others are incompatible, a third being impossible if you chose wrong with those two. So in conclusion, you can get four in a single run, if you pick the right four, but just barely; level 2 takes all your points and level 6 takes all but one, so as a pacifist you'll have to scramble for nano for the latter.
Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
 21 Sabbo, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 6:20:39 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Baby don't hurt me!
Well, here are the supercharges I know of. Spoilered for those who don't want to know at all, even though I wasn't very descriptive in any of them.

Come to think of it, I'm only aware of a few supercharges.

1 - Next to the entrance to Sector Z. Requires Lv.4 Strength, to kick a blue Tasen.

2 - High up in an early part of the level. Requires Lv.6 Tasen.

3 - High up, toward the end. Requires Lv.3 Komato and Lv.5 Crack, I think. Maybe Lv.6 Crack.

4 - High up, near the middle of the level. I don't think it can be done on a pacifist run, due to enemies being between where you start and the supercharge. Otherwise requires nothing special.

5 - The boss has it. Requires 9 Crack and 10 Tasen.

6 - Toward the end, behind a high up glass window. Could probably be done with 3 Tasen, 6 Komato, and somewhere near 4-6 Crack I think. I don't remember the exact number.

7 - The boss has it. I've never gotten it, but I imagine it requires lots of Attack and a bit of Assimilate.

8 - I don't know for certain, but if my guess is right, then it's in the middle of the level, and only requires 5 Crack. And a lot of patience.

9 - In Deep Sector. Unavoidable for a pacifist run, and therefore requires nothing. Having 10 Tasen and 9 Crack makes it more fun though. A few Assimilate on top of that even more so.

X - Impossible to get in a pacifist run, and requires 10 Crack, Tasen, and Komato.

Oh wow, I knew all of them. That was unexpected. I had to look at the maps to figure out many of them though, if only to remember exactly which level I was thinking of.

edited 22nd Apr '09 6:22:02 PM by Sabbo

 22 Brickman, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 7:04:48 PM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
I'm fairly certain the level 2 one requires a rocket jump (the rocket being from a turret; this is, I believe, necessary to GET TO the rocket launcher) and thus level 2 health. I'm also fairly certain you can get the level four one, but you'll take some damage; you have to run past some guys to reach the shredder but all that the shredder has to plow through is turrets. Plus it requires either a rocket jump from the commander or some points in strength. So health again. I do not believe you can reach the level 6 one with the splintergun, but I'd have to check. I don't remember exactly what it costs either, but that won't help except to provide an alternate path; 2 and 3 are still exclusive and even on the off chance that you could get 2 and 6 using the splintergun you could've also done it with the nuke. Basically, if it works, you can get 3, 4 and 6 instead of 2, 4 and 6. 3 is a lot less work than 2, but the level 10 Tasen weapons are more useful.

Anyways, 8 requires no points in anything but you need to kill two annihilators to get it.
Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
 23 Sabbo, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 7:30:12 PM from Australia Relationship Status: Baby don't hurt me!
Ah, you're right about Sector 2. Forgot that bit.

The Sector 4 one requires you to plow through some green Tasen enemies. So that's a no-go I think. (EDIT: Oh, wait. Just tried it. It's possible, but a bit difficult. For one, you need to be hit perfectly with a red Tasen's rocket to get past a Strength 4 door, and two, you need sneak past one or two green Tasen while on one of them rider thingys.

The Sector 6 supercharge has some similarities to a certain poster, hence my splintergun idea. Using a nuke would be dangerous, due to the enemies below.

The Sector 8 supercharge, if it's where I'm thinking of, might still be possible. How much health can we optimally have by that point without going off-track?

.

Question: Does it count as a kill if you kick a turret into an enemy? I think I've had it read differently at different times.
 24 Kyler Thatch, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 7:35:29 PM Relationship Status: Don't hug me; I'm scared
literary masochist
If you just kicked it off its stand, no. If you kick it into someone when it's lying broken on the ground, yes.
I don't care, I'm still free
You can't take the sky from me
 25 Brickman, Wed, 22nd Apr '09 9:20:32 PM from wherever adventure takes me Relationship Status: My own grandpa
Gentleman Adventurer!
You sure? I don't think that was my experience. Anyways, you're right about level 4; I thought those two Tasen were turrets. The rocket jump's quite easy but there's no getting a shredder past those two without killing them.

Anyways, just checked. Hack levels are as follows:

1-none 2-none 3-buster gun 4-resonance reflector 5-spread rockets (most superfluous weapon ever) 6-hyper pulse (weapon 6) 7-splintergun 8-plasma cannon (overpowered laser) 9-nuke 10-velocithor

The hyper pulse is a bit more expensive than I thought, but it's totally worth it for being the only safe way to fight Komato in melee. Still possible to get it in level 3, still not possible to do so while also getting a nuke by 6 or rockets by 2. I checked and the splintergun does work in level 6, and there's sufficient distance to insulate all enemies from a nuke blast, so I guess we could now officially either direction. If we pick Komato it's 3, 6 and 9; we need level 3 Komato and level 6 crack by sector three (leaving two points for health) and level 3 Tasen, 6 Komato and 7 crack by sector 6 (leaving 5 points free). If we pick Tasen it's 2, 6 and 9; 2 health and 6 Tasen leaves no points free at sector 2 and 2 health, 10 Tasen and 9 crack leaves no points free at sector 6. So the Komato path means a bit more health and a much easier first supercharge, and a slightly better setup against Asha (nobody's getting a nuke, can get a buster gun with 10 ammo but the Komato path falls back on a pulse cannon rather than a shotgun; actually not sure there's much difference) and can get a theoretically-useful pulse cannon by the end of level 7 (although I checked and it doesn't seem to actually work on assasins, despite all logic; or if it does that assasin I tried it on was really lucky with when he teleported away), but the Tasen path gets us the nuke by the end of six, which is much more useful against lonely assassins (the only type of enemy we can kill), and the devastator in time for Proxima (good for the equivalent of maybe two zaps, plus it pushes him back). And we can catch up on health in 7. So the Tasen path is still the superior path in terms of how easy the game will be, except level 2. Both paths only hold three supercharges for a grand total of 33 potential points, though in reality as a pacifist we won't get the last few. 27 goes into our maxed stats, so our final health is between levels 2 and 7, unless we spend a point on assimilate (we won't). Both paths converge at level 10, but all the way up to the last minute the Tasen path will have superior firepower with the nuke AND the devastator vs a hyper pulse we can't use and a plasma cannon that won't work on assassins.

I should mention that getting the level 2 charge as a pacifist with level 2 health is a good feat though. There's a part where we'll pretty much rely on luck with one of those glowy temporary powerups to get past a well positioned Commander (guy with cape) and two soldiers, and another part with multiple soldiers in a hallway with a low ceiling. And a rocket jump. I think there's health powerups between each stumbling block, so if we don't stick around and let mercy invincibility wear off we'll be fine.

Why am I saying "we"? It's not "us" who's gonna do it. It's probably-but-not-definitely "me".
Your funny quote here! (Maybe)
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