Monday, May 4, 2015

April overview

I played Lunatic only in FW. The following scores were updated:

B1: 101,082,530 -> 102,109,460 (+1,026,930)
B2: 100,524,840 -> 100,981,660 -> 101,401,960 -> 102,935,550 (+2,410,710)
C1: 100,164,660 -> 100,950,740 -> 101,185,780 -> 102,247,660 (+2,083,000)

+5,520,640 to the total score.

I think the C1 run is the best score I have gotten so far.

Stage 1: C1 is definitely the easiest stage 1 on Lunatic for optimization, mainly because of the simplistic boss fight. The luck elements just aren't severe in the stage portion or boss fight, and the challenge level is generally low.

That's not to say that it's trivial, the first 30 seconds of the stage in particular is difficult to get past with my patterns.

Pre-midboss, the score variances when things are going "relatively" right aren't too severe, but I still demand above average luck on the very first portion.

The opening spam is done with two freezes, and I restart if I don't have 330,000 after this, I estimate around 40-45% chance. In addition, you may die at times, so maybe 2 out of 5 runs pass the spam. Note that with super luck you can get over 400,000 from the spam, so in eventual future attempts I may up the bar a bit.

The next section with the 4 corner fairies is much tougher. My pattern is to be near the bottom left when the 2nd spawning fairy (in the top left) starts shooting the 4th set of aimed bullets. Exactly as it starts doing this, you sprint through the mayhem towards the bottom right and freeze there. Do this correctly for around 140,000 and without killing the 3rd (top right) fairy.

My pattern is still somewhat lenient, because I keep going if the 3rd fairy dies. It only removes a small portion of your score, so no big deal.

The rest is routine including the midboss. However the largest mistake in this stage 1 was at the end of the midboss, the last freeze was complete shit. 100-150,000~ loss.

Post-midboss has two sections, the first section is easy, but the second is tricky. Let's call this the knife ring section.

My pattern can get just about as much out of it as I can even think of being possible, but it is tough to optimize despite 0 RNG. Your positioning and timing needs to be spot on, before and after every freeze, but FW isn't so simple that that would be all. You have to adjust your positionings and timings according to your ice power and, if any freeze should be slightly different from the ideal pattern, the rest of the pattern also must be altered.

In this run it went well enough except that one freeze didn't follow the exact pattern, resulting in some freaky readjusting strats for the next freeze, quite difficult.

Star Sapphire is by far the simplest stage 1 boss, and I'd say my fight was okay. The nons really aren't worth mentioning, but the first spell is quite tough to optimize since the luck element is relatively high and the danmaku is difficult. My strategy includes a planned bomb for this which is better than capping it if you can get some good milking done, besides, there's not really much you can do with that bomb.

The last spell was bad, but it's actually not a big deal at all, so I can move on safely. A death anywhere on this stage is an instant restart, but thankfully most of the deaths happens at the start, and not on Star.

Stage 2: C1-2 is pretty difficult and the luck element is fairly severe. The pattern is half-assed along the way to the midboss, missing two 30% areas. Lily White is so luck based and difficult to optimize but scoring  wise I have little complaints, decent RNG on the first nonspell, 2 suicide 1 PF is used on the 2nd nonspell, the last freeze on the 2nd non was a bit low. The main issue here is the accidental death at the end of the 3rd nonspell. My suicide patterns are on the strict side so accidental deaths in the wrong place at the wrong time can completely kill a run. In this case the death shoots me up to 300% PF during the chaos section and I've lost a potential suicide later.

Important to keep in mind that with Sunny Milk as the stage boss, PF usage on Lily and the stage portion is less worthwhile. Due to this, spend only 1 PF on the second half of the stage. I reach 2 out of 3 30% area at the end, It's ok, because I still start Sunny Milk with 279% PF and I don't need any more than that. It is not the best idea to bomb the very first wave of the first non, better to wait at least until the 3rd wave and hope Sunny moved back to the middle (and downward) for that wave. If she doesn't, you may want to sit at 300% PF for a short while while waiting, or just fire away the bomb. This is totally just preference. I prefer just firing the bomb before I reach 300%. You need all the PF you can get.

Fatal Flash wasn't the best luck and I botched the final freeze I was supposed to do. The second nonspell was a little wrong, main issue is that the second suicide was timed too late, eating up bullets from the wave after. Cross Diffusion was completely wrong. I was trying to follow a new pattern I had just developed but the very first freeze ended up being messed up so I had to do some crazy dodging as a result. Yellow Deflection is quickly killed off for high SCB and enough PF to bomb the stage 3 ring fairies without any more suicides. In the end, the scoring on Sunny Milk was really just passable, but I still consider the fight good because there were no accidental deaths at all and that is a difficult feat in a scoring run, and I can follow a solid resource route on stage 3 without spending any needless lives.

Stage 3: Opening section is low and the very first bomb is mistimed. I counted 1 extra ring for some reason (You are supposed to bomb on the 6th shot, I bombed on the 7th). At least I adjusted on the second bomb. I didn't hear the first ring, so I counted to 6 but bombed on 7... Stupid.

Luna Child's nonspell was great, it can go higher but it is extremely difficult to optimize. It is just one of those things where the base strategy is pretty simple, but getting the most out of it is just ridiculous. I followed the pattern on Silent Flower successfully, and the luck was good. However, my execution was lacking. The first bomb can be better and one of the last freezes was low, neither of these were due to bad luck. But, still, I consider the midboss a success overall.

The second half of the stage goes well, with a freeze hitting exactly 420,000. I was not high during this run. Anyway, the time based fairies went well, and thankfully because this is C1 and not A2, I don't have to worry about an optimized bomb at the end which can be such a tough bomb to get right. NB patterns are smoother.

I start the Three Fairies with 589 motivation, 167 PF, and 39.58m. This is pretty much exactly enough to execute the kind of boss fight that I want, so overall, if things go well, one accidental death is all that is really allowed over the course of the run (aside from some odd instances in the final boss, where you can maybe "accidentally" die on the 4th non for example)

First nonspell: Goal is to quickly get the frozen items (very difficult) and then get 30% areas from Luna (also difficult). Each second you spend trying to get the items is penalizing. If you take too long you can kiss the run goodbye. Even if you do it quickly, if you can't milk Luna well, kiss the run goodbye. So this part of the run is very dramatic. I missed a frozen item set, and scored not even a single 30% area, so overall it was a poor nonspell and I was very very close to losing the run due to that.

Full Moon Light: Goal here is to be able to use 4 PF, with 1 suicide. No problem if your PF% is high enough at the start, but since my PF% was low, it was a big problem and I was half-expecting the run die right here. You must score the maximum number of regular freezes without killing the side fairies. Then you must get 30% area from the side fairy suicide bullets. Then you must get 30% area on the suicidefreeze and then you can farm up the final bomb with tiny freezes. I had 101% PF when I used my bomb, so it was very close.

Second nonspell went according to plan. Ice Dissolver was excellent. I used to have a 2PF pattern for it but I've since switched to 3PF. Third nonspell was good execution but poor RNG, regrettably. You can't get everything you wish for even in a good run like this. On Triple Light, I do not do a speedkill, but that's not just because speedkilling is harder, but I actually need PF now to score 1 bomb for the 4th non. I milked the 4th non very aggressively without dying, it was crazy, and a single death couldve easily ended the whole run too. I start Fairy Overdrive with less PF than what I would prefer to have (114, I want at least 120). If I had had 1 less life, I would've wanted 145. FO is milked pretty well so I have 219 PF (244 after the suicide) for the final spell, which is really cutting it close. I'd say 220 (245) is the absolute least you should ever have and anything less than that is scary. My motivation was also at 890 (so 790 after the suicide) which is the minimum you should have without losing the maxed clear bonus.

The run held together throughout the boss fight somehow but it was so, so close to not making it, even a single minor freeze difference anywhere in the fight and the run would've ended, and a single accidental death would've ended it too. 102 million on C1 is very satisfying and I never thought I could reach it when I played last year. With some skill improvements, some pattern changes here and there and a new mindset, I somehow managed this. C1 can still go a bit higher, at least 103 million is fairly possible and 104 is certainly not impossible. But, this is the most "finalized" of my Lunatic scores and I will not beat this score anytime soon.


Next, let's talk about B1 and B2 briefly.

B1 first.

Stage 1 stage portion was cheap, this is probably the worst aspect of the whole run, but Sunny Milk was a success.

Star Sapphire was very shaky, with a poor first nonspell, and 2 accidental deaths in the fight. Still, the score was actually not so bad overall. A regular freeze on Comet Stream somehow scored 500,000, which is hands down one of the most confusing things I have ever managed to do in this game.

Stage 3 stage portion was excellent, and the boss fight was good overall, but there is room for improvement. In particular, there is a better pattern you can use on Break Canopy, but I consider it so hellish that I didn't want to include it for 102m attempts. If I ever try to improve this run, I will probably start doing the difficult Break Canopy pattern, but I don't expect to ever finish with that pattern...

As for B2, I collected the most major losses (compared to an estimated near-ideal)

Sunny Milk nonspell 1: big freeze -150,000, bomb -200,000

Lily nonspell 3 bomb: -400,000 (probably less with my RNG) Knife ring fairies: -200,000 (brain freeze)

Star Storm: -500,000 (dead) Great Triangle: -400,000 (dead & subpar freeze pattern) Nonspell 4: -400,000

Fairy Overdrive: -250,000 (frozen item loss, low SCB) Big losses totals: 2,500,000

No extra PF could be enabled by avoiding accidental deaths, nor did I miss any meaningful suicides.

The run was pretty uneven but the amazing luck on Sunny Milk and solid milking on Ice Dissolver among other successes really makes it a good run overall even with how horrible some of the mistakes were.

I spent a lot of time playing Etrian Odyssey 3 this month, but sort of lost my motivation in the 5th stratum. I want to beat the game so hopefully I'll get back to it. My party is Hoplite/Ninja, Princess/Ninja, Arbalist/Gladiator, Zodiac/Arbalist, Ninja/Zodiac.

I still play Money Puzzle Exchanger and I've finally started to crack a million points sometimes. My best score now is 1.4 million.

I've played some Batrider and upped my Normal Course score to C.9 (12.9) million. In the advanced course I've done mostly Carpet solo runs and also a few Garegga/Carpet runs, however, nothing but Game Overs so far. If I can finish a good Carpet run I should be getting at least a H or I (17-18 million). Teams are iffy for me, I prefer playing Carpet until I have a better run at least.


For future FW, I want to improve the Lunatic A2 to at least 117 million. After that, I am unsure. Either I will battle with the Extra stage, or I will start working on Normal, I think.