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cubanismo

Zero 5 tips?

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Got my copy of Zero 5 by way of Songbird today, and well, this is definitely going to set my projects back a bit 😃  This game rules!  It's like and adult-oriented, high-FPS version of what I would expect StarFox to look and play like on a true 64-bit powerhouse like the Jag!  Imagine if this had been the pack-in title at launch... No, wait, let's not go there again.

 

That said, this game is hard as hell.  Every other Jaguar game I've picked up so far I'm at least through the first few levels on the 2nd or 3rd try, and I always make the high score screen on the first few runs.  I have this one set on the "Cadet" difficulty and can't get through the first level.  Based on the enemies listed on the briefing screen, I don't think I'm even getting most of the way through the first level.  Once the ships start spawning more or less right on top of me, I'm a goner.

 

Anyone have any gameplay tips beyond those in the manual?  I'm not looking to cheat (yet), and I can't bear the shame of bumping it down to "Novice" (yet) either, but I feel like I need to jump-start my skills a bit somehow to get the most out of this one.  It's good enough I'm willing to put in the hours.

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Its rock hard, in fact so hard that I gave up after a couple of hours play and haven't returned. The furthest I got was level 2.

 

Shame as it looks great, very fluid just too hard, maybe if someone posts some good tips I'll give it another go.

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Posted (edited)

First of all, there's no shame in using the "Novice" setting. Remember, "Pride goeth before the fall." LOL!

Like you, I struggled with the first level. My greatest obstacle - no, my nemesis - was the red serpents at the very end. It releases a string of laser fire that can kill in a single blast. Doesn't help that it's built like a brick shit-house and hugs your craft like a clingy grandmother. My advice to you is collect all the power-ups, or as many as it takes to charge your shields and blaster. Remember, power-ups will charge whichever one is highlighted, so - once the selected power-up turns 'GREEN' - move onto the next as soon as possible. You want that shield maxed out by the time you reach the serpents. 

You have the 'smart laser', in which you only get three per mission. Again, save 'em for the red serpent. It's a waste to use 'em elsewhere since every other enemy appears in the same numbers and position, and are considerably weaker. Even the blue serpents are chumps compared to the red. As soon as the red serpent appears, select the blaster charge and hit it like a high school kegger. Its attack pattern doesn't change, so memorize it. Once you have the timing down for when it unleashes its laser attack, hit your 'smart laser'. Just one! You'll need the other two (wait for it). Finish it off with your charged lasers and it should bust up at the seams....

Then, we get a SECOND RED SERPENT! Yes, another one. As if the first wasn't hard enough. However, you should still have two 'smart lasers' available to you. Feel free to use 'em here (the level ends with its destruction), though I suggest timing their use to coincide with its attack - just to save wear-and-tear on your thumbs trying to blast away its neon string of anal-bead like lasers.

With any luck, it goes boom, and you're off to Mission 2. 

Good luck, sir. May the schwartz be with you!

Edited by Andrew Rosa
Grammar and punctuation.
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The other trick with the very first level is that all the enemies actually appear in a horizontal plane. In other words, only rotate left and right to shoot them. You can get disoriented quickly if you start rotating up and down.

 

Of course, later levels have enemies spawning in every direction, so eventually you will need full mastery of the controls... no question, the game is very hard. But the graphics and audio are impressive and makes the game one of the Jag's very best. :)

 

Thanks for your support! As of this writing, I still have a couple copies left in stock in the Songbird web store.

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This game will demand respect as in fear and terror. I beat first Level after Many tries on default difficulty but next levels i needed to go down to novice to beat, sorry, it’s the best ”trick” there is.

 

I agree with other posters on details and strategies saving and using power when most needed. Music and graphics is unreal giving you a pleasant ride while dying. A must have game, for its high Level off frustration we all jagmaniacs love.

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Awesome, thanks for all the tips.  With great concentration and application of all these strategies, I was able to make it to... the 2nd red serpent on the first level 😞  I'm not getting the 2nd two lasers off fast enough to stave off the insta-kill even when I have full shields and full weapons at this point.

 

A very small part of what was throwing me off before: The manual is incorrect, in that it states "1" selects shield powerups and "2" selects weapon powerups.  They're the opposite of that, and I also have a really nice looking aftermarket Zero 5 controller overlay from @pboland which I was relying on even more than the manual which matches the incorrect manual button layout unfortunately.  Took me way too long to notice this.  WTF Telegames?  Hopefully future overlays can be corrected...

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Scratch that, I gave it one last try and made it to Level 2!  I got all excited when I made it through the first wave there, thinking I'd beat the level.  Died after a few seconds of the mine fields 😔  Still, I'm really enjoying the separate gameplay modes.  The graphics look awesome in the Hitpack mode, especially when taking out the larger enemies (Stingers?).

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Dude, that's progress right there. You'll find the sweet spot and persevere. It took me a hot minute and lots of cursing, but I did it. LOL! If my dumb ass can do it, you should be in like Flynn. 

Didn't even notice that error with the manual. I just followed their placement on the screen. Where I sometimes screw up now is the smart laser. I get the buttons crossed in my head and I end pressing '5' instead of '6'. That killed me a couple times because my timing was on point, but I kept thinking '5'....

There are days in which I hate my brain. 

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CONGRATULATIONS on making it to mission 2. At least you've unlocked it, so you don't have to play through the first mission again. 

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7 hours ago, cubanismo said:

Awesome, thanks for all the tips.  With great concentration and application of all these strategies, I was able to make it to... the 2nd red serpent on the first level 😞  I'm not getting the 2nd two lasers off fast enough to stave off the insta-kill even when I have full shields and full weapons at this point.

 

A very small part of what was throwing me off before: The manual is incorrect, in that it states "1" selects shield powerups and "2" selects weapon powerups.  They're the opposite of that, and I also have a really nice looking aftermarket Zero 5 controller overlay from @pboland which I was relying on even more than the manual which matches the incorrect manual button layout unfortunately.  Took me way too long to notice this.  WTF Telegames?  Hopefully future overlays can be corrected...

I wish I would have known this sooner. Thanks for the update. I'll have to update the overlay.

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I've made it to level 4 with regular play, but my thumbs can't take the punishment. You need thumbs of steel or rapid fire for extended play. I can't offer any tips other than just keep playing it. The 'tube' level I remember as being awesome.

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I played the heck out of this when it was first released. Finished it. Like alot of shooters, it's a pattern memorization thing. But mess up on the controls and its game over pretty quickly.

 

I got the rapid fire controller and could complete the game much easier. Definitely a button masher.

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Are you using the stock gray or black Jag pad to play?  If you are try using a Starwander Pro Controller as the d-pad allows for easier movement in the corners.  A joystick might work better as well.

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1 hour ago, grips03 said:

Are you using the stock gray or black Jag pad to play?  If you are try using a Starwander Pro Controller as the d-pad allows for easier movement in the corners.  A joystick might work better as well.

Without searching the forums, I'm certain there is a small interview with the game's developers in which they claim Zero 5 was originally designed as an arcade game. That explains the lack of rapid fire and ship handling that is much more suited to a joystick.

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Just received the Starwander Rapid Fire controller from @grips03 and it’s fantastic. It really helps with this game but it’s still hard as hell even on Novice. Starting fresh, I made it to mission 5 after a few failed attempts. The only advice I can give you is to make sure you hook your jag up to a decent HiFi and go into options and turn on the bass boost!

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1 hour ago, BeefMan said:

Just received the Starwander Rapid Fire controller from @grips03 and it’s fantastic. It really helps with this game but it’s still hard as hell even on Novice. Starting fresh, I made it to mission 5 after a few failed attempts. The only advice I can give you is to make sure you hook your jag up to a decent HiFi and go into options and turn on the bass boost!

Did you press RF button 3 times for 7 CPS?

 

BSG = 5

Raiden red shot = 6

Zero 5 shot = 7

Trevor McFur = 9

 

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13 hours ago, grips03 said:

Or just buy a rapid fire controller or kit from me :)

I plan on getting a kit or two, just bought a few too many things this month already.  Also, I'm a bit of a purist: I'll probably want to play through it without rapid fire before trying it that way.

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On 7/16/2020 at 9:34 AM, grips03 said:

Did you press RF button 3 times for 7 CPS?

 

BSG = 5

Raiden red shot = 6

Zero 5 shot = 7

Trevor McFur = 9

 

I think I’ve been pressing it four times.

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1 minute ago, BeefMan said:

I think I’ve been pressing it four times.

If 8 CPS works well then stick with it.  If not try 7 :)

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Finished mission 5 last night after several attempts. I’m not sure how it would be humanly possible to manually pump as many bullets into the boss as It took to finish him off. I just need to memorize the patterns on mission 6 and I think I’ll have it beat. 

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Cheers on making it to mission 6.  I spent about an hour trying to get through mission 2 tonight, and could not.  I can certainly see why rapid fire is a plus for this game.  I literally had to take breaks to relax and stretch out my right hand between attempts.  I'm gonna keep trying though.  I feel like I'm starting to get a feel for the asteroids.  On my last attempt, I think I was nearly there, but I'd played poorly on the first section and earlier parts of the asteroid field and didn't have enough shields to power through.  Just need to string together a good run of the whole thing I think... or break down and drop into novice 😞

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