In this game, you are a blue (P1) or red (P2) tank. Your object is to destroy all the enemy tanks in each level. It has a play structure similar to Table Tennis. The first time through, the game consists of 20 levels, which must be beaten in succession. This earns the gold medal. Then it stops you, and then you have the chance to go through 100 levels.
Each tank destroyed is worth one point, and you receive one extra life for each five levels completed.
There are nine types of tanks in this game, all of which are classified by their attributes. These attributes are: colour, what level they first appear in, speed, bullets allowed at one time, how many times their bullets ricochet, mines allowed at one time, and intelligence.
You play as either P1 or P2. P1 is a blue tank, while P2 is a red tank (be careful not to get P2 mixed up with the enemy red tanks that first appear in Level 10). Player tanks move at a normal speed. They can fire five bullets at a time, which ricochet once. They can lay two mines at one time.
There are only two play modes, single-player and two-player.
In single-player mode, you must first beat missions 1-20, then start over and try to beat all the missions (there are 100 in total). Missions 1-10, after you become familiar with the game, are very easy and serve simply as a way to up your life count to 4 or 5. Of course, as you grow more and more experienced with the game, later missions will seem like this too. At mission 50, the black tanks are introduced. Another thing to keep in mind is that while there is a good number of new stages after mission 20, several of them are simply repeated with different enemy tanks. Mission 100 is a perfect example of this. The only major downfalls of this mode are the inability of the player to save their game and the unadjustable difficulty.
In this mode, two players can go up to mission 20 (but most unfortunately, no further) by working together. The number of enemy tanks or their position are sometimes different when compared to single-player mode, but overall the missions are very similar. Two-player tanks has two major downfalls: there are only 20 missions and only one life per mission for each player (this was probably done to make 20 levels challenging enough to make up for the low quantity).
Although they all behave differently, they have a few common characteristics. For example, the tanks that move never stop moving. The moving tanks can push the fixed tanks around.
First, however, you have to know how to effectively ricochet your shots. The concept is simple, but can be difficult to properly make use of in the heat of battle. There are two main types of ricochet sequences: offensive (to destroy enemy tanks) and defensive (to keep away enemy tanks or shots; can easily turn into an offensive ricochet sequence). Each of these involves three main types: acute angle ricochets, obtuse angle ricochets, and right-angle ricochets. The first is when the angle the original path and ricocheted path of your shots is less than 90 degrees, the second involves angles greater than 90 degrees and less than 180, and the third angles equal to 90 degrees. Use each one in the appropriate situation.
You can tell which tanks are on the field by the music. It is as follows:
- Brown and Grey: Snare Drums, Flute
- Turquoise, Yellow, and Red: Tympani and Bass Drums
- Green: Bells and Horn
- Purple: Horn only
- White: Saxophone and Horn
- Black: Green, Purple, and White themes combined
(All tanks except White and Black have the flute and snare drums as their music)
These first appear in Level 1. They are fixed (non-moving), and can only fire one slow bullet at a time. They do not lay mines. Their turrets do not actively seek the player, but only search randomly, firing if you cross their path. Very easy to defeat. A direct shot will finish one of these off.
These first appear in Level 2. They move at a slow speed, and can only fire one slow bullet at a time. They do not lay mines. Their turrets mildly seek the player, but their movement does not. They are neither offensive or defensive in their movements. A quick burst across their path will usually destroy them.
- Turquoise (Rocket)
These first appear in Level 5. They move at a slow speed, and can fire one fast bullet at a time. It does not ricochet. They do not lay mines. Their turrets strongly seek the player, but their movement does not. They are defensive in their movement, and avoid bullets and mines. Avoiding direct engagement is desirable, so stay under cover and use ricochet shots to destroy them. Two things to keep in mind when facing these tanks are the 'continuous movement strategy' and the 'point-blank zone'. The continuous movement strategy is simple: keep moving in one direction while shooting at these tanks if they can shoot at you. In other words, if you are in a direct-confrontation situation, use this strategy to make their shots miss. Why does it work? Because almost all the time, the turquoise tanks' shots will seek the current location of a player; they won't aim for where you will be. This, however, is where the point-blank zone comes in. If you are close enough to the turquoise tanks, their shots will simply be too fast to effectively dodge. You will need to use shot deflection to protect your tank. This is true for any tank, of course, but even more so for the ones that fire the fastest shots (turquoise, green, and black).
Also nicknamed "Suicide Bomber". These first appear in Level 8. They move at a fast speed, and can fire one slow bullet at a time. They lay multiple mines at a time. Their turrets mildly seek the player, but their movement does not. They are neither offensive nor defensive in their movements, but strongly avoid mines. Getting in close and firing a burst deals with these relatively quickly. It is important to note that sometimes these tanks will go suicidal. They often move into your line of fire if it wasn't already headed for them. The problem comes when, by doing this, the yellow tanks lure the player into a trap. This usually involves mines that are invisible due to walls blocking it from your view, but can involve a different yellow (which can be very aggressive) attacking from another side. Although these tanks, by themselves, are not very dangerous, they can easily become so when they have stronger tanks to back them up because of the sheer number of mines they put down and their random aggressiveness.
These first appear in Level 10. They move at a normal speed, and can fire multiple slow bullets at a time. They do not lay mines. Their turrets and movements both seek the player. They are offensive in their movements. When facing these, always keep moving or you will be destroyed! Shoot at them, but do not pause for long. Move closer and closer and eventually you should win because of your greater firepower. It is essential to master battle against red tanks if you want to even stand a chance against the purple ones.
These first appear in Mission 12. They do not move, and can fire two fast bullets at a time (the same ones the turquoise tanks use). These bullets ricochet twice. They do not lay mines. Their turrets strongly seek the player, and they calculate the ricochets with incredible accuracy. The most difficult threat they pose is when two or more fire at you simultaneously, but from different angles. It takes a lot of practice to overcome this, but always try to minimize the time in which you are in a situation where this would be especially dangerous. They will never fire directly at you, if rarely. You mostly see them with any rapid-fire tank (red, purple, black, white). The level where they tend to be most difficult is Level 17, where six of them are on the field around every corner. The moving tanks usually push these tanks along walls. If your tank is on the other side of the same wall, you can lay a mine to kill them.
These first appear in Level 15, where they are arguably at their most difficult to defeat. They move at a fast speed, and can fire multiple slow bullets at a time. They can lay two mines. Their turrets and movements seek the player, though not as strong as some. They are only offensive if a line-of-sight to the player is present. They are like red tanks, but more intelligent and faster. The strategy they use most is the 'ricochet and attack' one (where they send ricochet shots near you, then move in to attack, effectively increasing the chance of a shot hitting you). If you can defend against this and then skillfully go on the offensive when they are vulnerable, they will become much easier to defeat. They have a tendency to coordinate movements with other Purple tanks, and this makes their 'ricochet and attack' strategy a far more deadly occurrence. Be careful to avoid the 'prong' strategy (where two purples close in from different angles and fire at the same time). This strategy is deadly because the player will not be able to escape the bullets, especially if they fire bursts. Just remember to never think it will be an easy win and wait for opportunities to pick them off one-by-one. As soon as the first one is destroyed, the next will be far easier than the last. And as with all difficult tanks, never become careless when you have a surefire chance to destroy them, as it can easily cost you a life or the game. Their biggest weakness is mines. They tend to lay mines for no reason, therefore trapping themselves. Take this chance to charge in and shoot at them, forcing them to be killed by your bullets or driving over their mines, which then explode. Use this strategy against the Black tanks, too.
These first appear in Level 20. They become invisible after the level starts. They can fire multiple slow bullets at a time. They also lay mines. You can see them by the tank tracks they make when they move around by using an ID. It is crucial that you know how many whites there are at the beginning of the mission and during it. Under- or over- estimating will only hinder you. When they turn invisible they make a high or low sound. The high sound means they are going offpensive and the low sound means that they are acting defensive.
When facing them, fire bullets slightly ahead of where the newest tracks are leading. The newest tracks are where the middle of the tank is, so if you fire directly at them they may have dodged the bullet by the time it reaches your target. Like the purple tanks, these tanks also tend to lay mines for no reason, so take this chance to kill them before they get away! Also, please note that these tanks tend to sneak up on you in higher levels, so keep your eyes peeled!
These first appear in Level 50, after completing Level 20 once. They are the second most difficult tanks to defeat. They are the fastest tanks in the game and can lay two mines. What makes them the most dangerous, aside from their speed, is that they can fire rapidly with the missiles that the Turquoise ones fire. The battlefield of Level 50 is exactly the same as the one in Level 5, except the top black tank is facing horizontally, not vertically. Unlike Turquoise, their shots more often aim for where you will be, so if you are to stand any chance against them whatsoever, you must master the tactics of offensive and defensive ricochets, shot deflection, using mines, and basic trapping strategy at least.
Black tanks are defensive and tend to run away whenever you fire at them. So, to destroy one of these you should shoot one bullet in its general direction and then shoot more bullets to the left and right so that it gets trapped between your spread shots. This is the same strategy that Purple tanks use on you.
Like the Purple tanks and White tanks, the Black tanks also lay mines for no reason. Charge in and shoot at them so the have to decide if they want to get blown up by their own mine, or run into your bullets.
Black tanks are more effective in more spacious missions, because they have more room to fire at you, and more room to dodge your bullets. Their high speed, their missile speed, where they aim, and their high intelligence is also more deadly in spacious missions. If you can get them into narrow corridors, their effectiveness drops significantly.
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