Monday, October 14, 2013

The theory behind a 200K game of Berzerk Slow Bullets

So my attempt at my own record the other night got me thinking about what it would take to get 200,000 thousand points in Berzerk. Here is the short of my calculations.

  • With no bonus I would have to kill 4,000 robots to get 200,000 points
  • With bonus, taking into account the variation of number of robots in the room, it would be 3,700 ~ 3,800 robots (roughly). 
  • We are talking about around 400 rooms to conquer 
  • An average of 80 rooms per humanoid
Again this are not 100% accurate, but they are close. The real trick is not even the game but myself. My last game that was 137,140 points, I lost two lives due to my own errors, and one death was rather embarrassing. 

I believe in my core that 200K is possible, I actually believe that 500K is possible, 100K on average per man, but it would not easy, the biggest problem is not the game killing you but you killing yourself with simple mistakes. 

When I did my 199,860 game, I traversed 383 rooms, which is a lot but when you think that the game has 65,536 possible rooms, I just barely cracked 0.005% of all the possible rooms in the game. I know there are rooms I have never seen in the game, and those are the ones I'm most worried about, I've learned how to attack different rooms depending on the layout, without that knowledge, its all reflex. However reflex will only last so long, my 199,860 game was almost 2.5 hours, a 500K game is going to be closer to 6 hours with the way I play, I could speed up but I find my pace works well for me. 

I will be playing again this week, and I'll be pushing myself to play better and better, I'll break my own record, its not an "if", its a "when"!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Kill Screen in Berzerk at 137,140 points last night.

After getting 118K the other night I decided to play the Berzerk RC28 slow bullets again. I got such a sense nostalgia playing Berzerk last night. I haven't even owned the game for two years yet but playing it last brought back memories when Berzerk was the only game I owned. 

I would go into my basement at my old place, which wasn't insulated, with a light jacket, gloves and a hat to just play a game of Berzerk. I couldn't even stream back then, I was recording my games on my old iPod Touch resting against a lamp, it was a really shady setup but it worked and I loved every minute of it!

Last night was one of those night, everything felt right, and I was playing well! I had two dumb deaths, but I didn't let it get to me though, I rolled off the deaths and just kept on going. The most difficult thing about playing Berzerk is not letting the game get in your head, which even for a veteran Berzerker is not an easy thing to accomplish. 

I was at 137,140 points on my 4th man, with one man left in reserve. I was feeling good, I had a good pace, I was taking minimal risks but still playing safe. I actually thought that if I could keep my pace, of not playing too risky, I could finally break the 200K barrier which I got so close too last year. 

When I got the extra point and left the room, I knew something horrible happened, looking back at the video, you can tell that I knew something went wrong. The screen jumped and then the color on the bottom corner of the maze was wrong, and I knew something just went bad in the machine. 

I think I finally know how Bill Carlton felt in High Score when he was playing Missile Command, like Bill I knew before it happened that my game had just ended, it was heart wrenching. As of right now I still do not know what the cause of the kill screen was but my guess is I have a ram issue on the VFB-1000 video and control board. That is the only board in my machine that I haven't looked at or checked the ram chips in. Here is the video of when the game crashed on me!


I will continue playing, I know I can break 200K and if I can stop making stupid mistakes I think a score much high is possible! 


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Getting back into the game I love so much

Well I took a massive break from playing Berzerk and Frenzy. Between moving into a new place, switching jobs, kids starting school, switching cars, life has just been non-stop busy for me.

 I finally got around to fixing my machine, and I have a Frenzy cabinet on the way to me. I will have both a Berzerk and a Frenzy arcade machines! So Last night I started with playing some fast bullets Berzerk. This is the one game out of the three I really struggle with, I tried playing two night ago but I wasn't in the right mindset to play the game.

My goal for the night was 20K, on my first game I got 24,590. What is even more impressive, or embarrassing depending on how you look at it, is I lost 3 men in the 8,000s and was still able to pull a 20K+ game.

After a couple of requests, I pulled the fast bullets EPROMs out and install my slow bullets EPROMs to play a game of slow bullets Berzerk. I hadn't played the game in months, I've been bouncing playing other titles but last night was the first serious game of Berzerk slow bullets I've played since before I moved. The game lasted over an hour and I got a score of 118,670. I'm really happy with that considering its been so long since I played the game.

My high score, which is now recognized by Twin Galaxies as a world record, is 199,860 points that I got on July 4, 2012. Since then I haven't played the game nearly as much I use to, and I'm getting back into playing the game nightly and I'm determined to be the first person in the world to play a perfect game of slow bullets Berzerk, which I will explain in a later post!

I must say it feels good to be back!