View Full Version : Dip this thread in water to reveal - Let's Play StarTropics!

12-07-2008, 07:23 PM
#Title# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Title.mp3)
There's something about NES music that connects with me. Years ago, I spent countless days discovering lost NES classics and listening to NSF files, and I discovered that music really makes these games and defines their experiences. Even for the games that had more space for text and comprehensible translations, it was the music that really told the story. The primitive sounds and simplicity make the songs easier to remember, a plus since a song you can't remember is ultimately a song with no importance.
StarTropics may not have the soundtrack of Mother or Final Fantasy III, but its music is an important part of the adventure, especially how it uses the music to toy with the player. In an effort to convey that effect, I am including music cues.

If you wish to follow along, you can download the NSF or (NSFE) file and the player of your choice. Alternately, if you're using FireFox (and you should be), install Foxytunes to add this neat little interface that plays the files directly from this page.

12-07-2008, 07:26 PM
I've been curious about this game ever since I used to read Nintendo Powers in the local library without owning a NES. I look forward to seeing this one.

12-07-2008, 07:28 PM
Let's get started.

If this doesn't look familiar to you, I pity you. StarTropics borrows many things from Zelda, the first of which is this. No matter what you call your file, the game will refer to you as Mike. The only purpose the name serves is to keep your progress distinct from your little sister's.
Of particular note here is the Chapter review option, which lets you replay a chapter you've previously cleared. Very handy for getting important screenshots you may have missed...

"Hi. My name is Michael Jones, but my friends call me Mike. I'm fifteen
years old and I live in Seattle, Washington.

Have you heard of my Uncle Steve? Well, most
people don't call him that, they call him Dr. Jones.
He is a very famous archeologist who is looking for
some lost ruins in the Coral Sea. I've never actually
met him, but last week I received a letter from him
inviting me to stay with him at his laboratory on


"I leave tomorrow on a helicoper! I bet I won't be
able to sleep at all tonight. Well, goodnight."

"Today I landed on C-Island after a long helicopter ride."

The real Coral Sea is in Australia and home of the Great Barrier Reef. In this game it's probably meant to be generic South Pacific. In either case, it's a hell of a helicopter ride from Seattle.

#New Chapter# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/New%20Chapter.mp3)

#Overworld# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/overworld.mp3)
I land on this cute little helipad here. A shourt jaunt east brings me to the village of Coralcola, with Uncle Steve's lab visible in the lagoon.
I think this place could use some rain. Then again, most of these dwellings are want of roof.
#Town# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Town.mp3)
"The people here are very friendly, and they all seem to know my uncle."

Well, he doesn't seem happy to see me.


Who am I?! Everyone else seems to know. I suppose being rooted to one spot limits the gossiping you can do about incoming Americolan teenagers.

12-07-2008, 07:33 PM
"I like this village, but I
haven't been able to find my
uncle anywhere and no one here
seems to know where he is either."


The Chief's hut is the big roofed building in town. Let's see if he knows what's going on here.
#Southern Cross# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/The%20Southern%20Cross.mp3)
"Listen Mike!
I have some...
Bad news...
Last night...
Try not to be too upset... but...
Your Uncle...
Dr. Jones...
Has been..... abducted!

We must keep this from the islanders so they don't panic.
You are the best hope of rescuing Dr. Jones.

(Classic But Thou Must)
Good! You're brave. Take this Island Yoyo.
You may think this Yoyo™ is just a toy, but it's very powerful.
Mike! You're an ace pitcher. Use it!
Mike, it looks peaceful around here... but in the dark below...
Many monsters have appeared these last few years.
Don't let them get you!
Mike, the fate of your uncle in in your hands.
Find a tunnel in the village and hurry to Dr. J's laboratory."

Well, damn. All I wanted this summer was to hang out in the tropics with my beloved uncle, go fishing, get some sun, and flirt with Miss Coral '90. Now I'm being thrust into a dark dungeon to solve his kidnapping and fight foul, evil, never-before-seen beasts with a Yoyo™?

That's more like it.

Inside, we are greeted by a staircase and a strange character:
"Your uncle was abducted because he found a secret in the lost ruins!
I have great hope that you will succeed in rescuing Dr. Jones.
Just like your North Star, island sailors look for the Southern Cross.
Mike! Many wild monsters await you in the dark below,
but remember! The magic of the Southern Cross is always on your side.
Now begin the test of Island courage! Good luck!"

#Dungeon# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Dungeon.mp3)
These stairs mark the entrance and exit of nearly every dungeon; a welcome sight after a grueling journey.
Our first room has a few weak slugs and a locked door. You probably have already noticed the Zelda-style lifemeter. That's just the first sign of Zelda's influence on this game. The locked door that opens when all the monsters die is the second.

But first, let me explain how StarTropics controls, since it's a huge sticking point when taking a modern look at the game:
This game is divided into grids. Most games are. But unlike his hero Link, Mikey can't rest in between tiles. Once you get him moving, he's going to that next tile and you can't stop it. If you attack while moving, you'll pause, then continue when the attack is finished. If you attack repeatedly, it will naturally take longer to reach the destination tile. Also, you can change your facing while moving. You can use this to your advantage with longer range weapons to attack perpendicular or even opposite your movement, especially when jumping.
Jumping is also strange. Normally Mike only can jump straight up, making dodging difficult. If you're next to a tile you can (slowly) jump one square onto the tile. If you're next to a hole (or the equivalents of water, lava, etc.) you jump over the adjacent tile. Luckily, the game doesn't let you walk into holes so you don't have to worry about timing, in that regard. Just make sure the gap's only one space wide.
The green tiles in the room are the bane of the modern gamer, one that doesn't have the patience or tolerance for crap us retros have. That's because you can't WALK on the tiles. You have to jump on them. Jump, jump, jump, tile to tile. It's a big hit to mobility on a system that was a bit clunky to begin with.

As long as you keep the grid in mind, though, you'll do fine.

Now, with the slugs dead, the door opens.

Next room. Same deal.

A pretty pattern, but we don't have time to gawk.

Wait, I can't reach that rat...

12-07-2008, 07:36 PM

Stepping on this tile caused a big, red button to appear. Not only does it act as a stepping stone, it also opens the door.


This next room's a double-wide, with a scrolling screen. Nothing to really note, though.


The star is one of the stranger pickups I've seen in a game. When you collect 5 of them, you get heart. Normal hearts also exist, but are less common.


Two switches, two doors. Left or right? Let's try left.


Whoops. I meant right.


What? Let's go back.


Look, a switch! Why don't I press it and see?


This switch blows a hole in the wall, introducing us to a new way to traverse between the rooms. Unlike doors, blown walls will stay open if you visit the room again. Die, however, and they reset like everything else.


A chest appears!! The chest blocks your way!!


Switches open chests. This one contains torches, a weapon with more range and power than the Yoyo™, but with limited uses. A second switch opens the door.


Here's the first of the Zelda expies, the Keese (known here as Nocto). They move diagonally, OFF THE GRID, but are easily dodged and dispatched. This room is also the restart point if you die. Lose all your lives, though, and it's back to the beginning of the tunnel.

12-07-2008, 07:42 PM
#Danger Zone# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Danger%20Zone.mp3)
That's an ominous tune...
Here's a Rope. I mean, Looper. Nearly identical to one of Zelda's Ropes, he'll charge you if you line up with them, but until then he'll just sit there.
The narrow branch off to the left contains another snake and a dead end.


What was that sound? First, let's get some more torches, then...

#Hidden Area# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Hidden%20Area.mp3)
Sweet. A soothing tune greets us in this room. A calming, healing tune; one of safety.


The medicine recovers five hearts when used. To use meds and other items, pause the game and hit down.



More medicine! That's a lot of potential life considering I only have 3 hearts.

More? Sure, why not?

WHAT? (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/alu_what.wav)

#Death# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Player%20Miss.mp3)
What a devious trap! Due to the way you enter rooms, there's no chance of escape here. And it's still playing the Sanctuary music! I somehow missed this room the first time I played this game at the age of 11. Upon finding it in my second game I felt so betrayed by the music, since all the other Sanctuaries are completely safe; respites from gruelling battle.
I recall at least one account of a Tyrant playing this game for the first time on VC, finding this room, and promptly quitting forever. He didn't want to play a game with a bunch of BS traps. I understand the sentiment, but ironically this is probably the most unexpected one in the game. It's the folks like him that I am doing this for.


Dying has bereft us of our torches and medicines. We won't need all that firepower though: it's the first dungeon.


One last room, then...


#Boss# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss%20battle.mp3)
Our first boss, the C-Serpent. Wait in the middle until his mouth opens, fire two torches, then jump to the side to avoid his attack. Sometimes he won't fire and just hang his mouth open, asking for a rapid-fire Yoyo™-ing.

Like all good NES bosses, when defeated he glows radioactive and screams when defeated.


#Victory# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Victory!.mp3)
Here lie the Skeletal remains of the C-Serpent
Beginning of time-1990

The panel generates a switch that opens the door. And off we go.

12-07-2008, 07:44 PM
#Overworld# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/overworld.mp3)
Free of the dankness of the evil tunnel, I am congratulated and my useless points tally up.


Everytime you enter or exit a dungeon, the game saves.


This naked dude blocks my path:

"Mike! You know Dr. J has a submarine, called Sub-C.
The ID code to start the engine of Sub-C is 1492."


"Please get on board Sub-C in the laboratory.
I wish I could tell you more, but I'm afraid of...


Terrified, he lets me pass. There's definitely danger afoot, my friends!


#Sub Cockpit# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Inside%20Sub-C.mp3)
This ROB-alike makes these adorable robot sounds when he talks!
He takes my ID code automatically. I don't have to type anything in. (That comes later!)

#And He's off!# (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/And%20He's%20off!.mp3)
The villagers wave and wish me good luck as I sail off on my perilous journey...

12-07-2008, 08:28 PM
<hums the happy little tune that opens each level>

What a devious trap! Due to the way you enter rooms, there's no chance of escape here. [...] I recall at least one account of a Tyrant playing this game for the first time on VC, finding this room, and promptly quitting forever. He didn't want to play a game with a bunch of BS traps. I understand the sentiment, but ironically this is probably the most unexpected one in the game. It's the folks like him that I am doing this for.
Which isn't to say that some of the other traps aren't, as the kids say, weak sauce. There are some leap-of-faith tile puzzles, where the next tile doesn't appear until after you jump later on. Lousy design even then.

I have a request. Before the end of this LP, could you give us a report on the taste of that paper? We'll give you a pass on eating or otherwise consuming, which I assume means "grind into powder and inhale".

12-07-2008, 08:39 PM
I have always hoped beyond hope,

That Mike Jones would be one of the fighters in a Smash Bros. game.

I still hope.

Star Tropics is so awesome.

Even if Mike drifts like a Japanese racer when you move him.

And the game isn't all that well designed.

Star Tropics is love.

Also, for some crazy reason: They renamed the "Yo-Yo" on the VC version to "Island Star".

12-07-2008, 08:41 PM
I have a request. Before the end of this LP, could you give us a report on the taste of that paper? We'll give you a pass on eating or otherwise consuming, which I assume means "grind into powder and inhale".

Or possibly main-lining it.

12-07-2008, 08:49 PM
Iloved this game as a kid. I beat it repeatedly and constantly tried to better my time. I think my best was somewhere just north of 3 hours. That said I tried to replay this when we did it as a Fun Club, and I found the controls and level design to be infuriating. I'm glad someone else is dealing with that so that I can relive my childhood memories!

12-07-2008, 09:05 PM

This is why I HATE HATE HATE HATE HATE HATE HATE StarTropics. This. This is such a dick move.

(Fun LP though!)

12-07-2008, 09:13 PM
I just beat this game a few days ago. I look forward to uncovering stuff I missed (ex: the Sanctuary trap) in your playthrough.

Oddly enough, the Startropics games were only released in the United States and Europe. Mike Jones is largely unknown to Japan. As such, I don't think he'll ever come up in a Smash Brothers game.

Red Hedgehog
12-07-2008, 09:41 PM
Coincidentally enough, MoltenBoron and I had a big discussion on StarTropics on Friday. Something with a name that ended in Cola came up and we wondered if that was one of the StarTropics villages. After much research, we found that it wasn't, but it left me humming the title theme to StarTropics and being called big dorks by the other people there.

12-07-2008, 09:41 PM
Oddly enough, the Startropics games were only released in the United States and Europe. Mike Jones is largely unknown to Japan. As such, I don't think he'll ever come up in a Smash Brothers game.

Yeah, I know. NA exclusive. How weird is that?

And it's why it makes me all the more SAD! http://www.gamespite.net/talkingtime/images/icons/icon9.gif

12-07-2008, 09:56 PM
I don't care what anyone else says, Star Tropics is awesome. Carry on.

12-07-2008, 10:07 PM
Is it me or does that paper look delicious right now?

12-07-2008, 11:26 PM
Oh man Star Tropics is one of my main and happiest childhood videogaming memories. I tried playing it again not too long ago and gave up somewhere on the second island, so this is awesome!

The paper is also my favorite dongle/feelie of all time.

12-08-2008, 12:02 AM
Why the hate for that room? There are so many worse things that this game throws at you in terms of unfairness. I've always loved that room as it's a fitting punishment for greed.

12-08-2008, 04:33 AM
When my fiance was a kid, he played a rental of this game. Thus he did not have that delicious delicious letter. The tragedy of that will one day become clear...

I, meanwhile, know little about this game and when I clicked on this thread I expected to see a space shooter.

12-08-2008, 07:10 AM
Why the hate for that room? There are so many worse things that this game throws at you in terms of unfairness. I've always loved that room as it's a fitting punishment for greed.

Because video games shouldn't punish you for greed. Collecting as many resources as possible is pretty staple as far as game mechanics go (especially in a game like StarTropics where the player is almost always starved for resources).

I guess I can see making an exception for games where stealing, pillaging and piracy are considered evil acts, but StarTropics isn't that game and isn't even anywhere near the same ZIP code as that game. The death room isn't clever or funny or fair, it's just mean.

12-08-2008, 07:44 AM
Because video games shouldn't punish you for greed.
Thank you kind sir! Please choose your reward:
- Money
- More Money
- Nothing
It is a proud tradition.

12-08-2008, 07:51 AM
That's not punishing you for greed, that's rewarding you for charity. If picking "money" or "more money" gave you a Game Over, you'd be in the same ballpark.

It's also worth pointing out that those types of options tend to come up in RPGs, which reward the player for picking up every single treasure box they set their eyes on, as well as ransacking the pots and jugs and underwear drawers of every citizen in all the land. =)

12-08-2008, 08:25 AM
It's also worth pointing out that those types of options tend to come up in RPGs, which reward the player for picking up every single treasure box they set their eyes on, as well as ransacking the pots and jugs and underwear drawers of every citizen in all the land. =)

The only moment a video game's made me feel guilty was KOTOR. I was absent-mindedly ransacking a guy's room right in front of him (as you do in RPGs) and he said something along the lines of "Take what you want! Please don't hurt my family!"

Made me feel like a right bastard.

12-08-2008, 08:28 AM
This was the first game that I ever called the NP Hotline for. Like a lot of people, I had rented the game and never got the letter that was supposed to come with it.

12-08-2008, 08:46 AM
I have always hoped beyond hope,

That Mike Jones would be one of the fighters in a Smash Bros. game.

I still hope.

You and me, friend.

12-08-2008, 08:55 AM
I'm really looking forward to this LP. It's one of very few Nintendo games I've never really played.

12-08-2008, 08:58 AM
I think that there are two ways to look at that room:

1. You're minding your own business, and then die. Complete nonsense; no game should punish you without warning. I quit.

2. You're on a dangerous, Indiana Jones style adventure. Traps and danger lie beyond every corner, and sometimes you just die. Gather your things and try again.

I certainly understand the frustration. In fact, people who think the second way might be touched in the head a bit. But they are also the people who are able to like La-Mulana, an even more Jones-style adventure. Sometimes you have to give yourself up to and enjoy the danger and mystery, not get hung up on it.

12-08-2008, 09:08 AM
I'd like to point out that in no time during any of the four movies does Indy ever "just die". He almost dies a lot, though, becayse that's a lot more fun.

Hmm... there's a lot more I could say on this topic but it's outside the scope of an LP thread. I'll go put it where it belongs. =)

12-08-2008, 01:34 PM
♪New Chapter♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/New Chapter.mp3)

♪Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/The Sub-C.mp3)

As we begin our search for the Doc, we are accosted by a dolphin chirping some gibberish at us.
Luckily, Nav-Com speaks fluent Delphinidae:


Not far to the east is a small island with a lighthouse. We dock on the beach and enter.
♪Overworld♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Overworld.mp3)

How are we going to get there? That dock is inland, and the Sub-C can't travel in the light blue shallows. I'd need to go through the walls...

That sparkle is the indicator of a hidden passage on the high seas. Sometimes they can only be seen from certain locations, so a careful eye is needed when this comes to play in later chapters. Here they won't appear until you speak to the lightkeeper, but you can go through them if you know where they are.


Let's Play: Zelda at Sea! But how do we get it?


"So you're looking for a boy dolphin. Sorry, but I have not seen him.
But early this morning I saw a bottle on the beach.
I wonder if it's a clue to the lost dolphin."

I can't imagine a scenario in which that could be true, but let's check it out anyhow.


There it is, but how is it reached?

If you've got a sharp eye, you can notice a slight deformity in the landscape. Or, just press your face to the rocks.


How fortuitous of us! I'm sure this note would have reached Mike eventually, but the Coral Sea Postal Service is inefficient and understaffed. Best that we were able cut out the middle man.

Wait! Evil Aliens!!? Just what was Uncle Steve working on?
Let's return to the Sub-C and enter our new code.

♪Cockpit♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Inside Sub-C.mp3)

A submarine that submerges? Fascinating! Let's try it out on this dark patch of water over here.


A few dives bring us over to this side of the island. Reefs block our escape, so let's see what's in that there cave. A missing dolphin son, mayhaps?


But first, a little detail snags us some extra health. Notice that I got 2 free hearts just by finishing the last chapter. This prize takes us to a max of 6.

12-08-2008, 01:38 PM
♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Dungeon.mp3)
In we go.


This dungeon seems a lot more open than the last, until you realize that you're confined to a 1-tile-wide path for most of it. All that water is for enemies to pop out of and attack you, like this mudfish. Also seen is a baseball bat, a powerful weapon but too slow and awkward to be of any real use.


This is our first submerging tile. It sinks in an out of the water with a distinctive sound, and we must time our jumps right or face a watery grave. Jump as they rise and get off right away, and you'll make it with time to spare.


A few meaningless rooms later, and we find these guys. They don't spit rocks, but they can jump from tile to tile. They only take one hit, so you don't need to worry if one jumps on the tile you're about to land on.


Our first walk-through walls, marked by a black shadow at where you can enter. Like all well-designed games, StarTropics introduces dungeon elements clearly, one at a time before throwing them together into puzzling gauntlets.


If you get into the center of the Spinistars quickly enough, they can all be killed with a single swing of the bat. This is the only point in the game the bat is useful.

♪Danger Zone♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Danger Zone.mp3)
That's our cue that things are getting thick. Puffs emerge and shoot a few bullets at us. They're slow, so just keep moving.

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Dungeon.mp3)
The music has returned to normal! Am I being toyed with?


Sometimes, not every enemy needs to be killed to proceed.


These next four rooms loop around, scoring us a med in the process.


The real exit is through the hidden passage to the right.


Inside the chest is the second greatest (and most adorable) item in the game, the Magic Snowman.


Not far beyond, we can see the kidnapped child. Looks like he needs help! We can probably find a way to free him in the next room.

12-08-2008, 01:39 PM
♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Boss Battle.mp3)
We've found our calf-napper. Must've been in the mood for some light chunk dolphin in water (tuna-free!!). He'll move back and forth spewing bullets at your location, so jump back and forth until, for whatever reason, he moves into range.


He's not there for long, but we have an ace up our sleeve. Bust out the friendly Frosty to not only keep him still but cover the screen in a nice cool blue. Then pound him with your Yoyo™.


He'll probably thaw before he dies, so just repeat until he bites it. If you can time the Snowman during his approach and freeze him so he's just in range of the Yoyo™, you can maximize your damage time, possibly getting him in a single use.

♪Victory!♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Victory!.mp3)
Free of his octo-prison, the victim swims out and chirps out a thank you.

♪Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/The Sub-C.mp3)

The grateful dolphins navigate us out of the reef, that we may continue our search...

(Years later, the Octos get their revenge: )

12-08-2008, 06:59 PM
Coincidentally enough, MoltenBoron and I had a big discussion on StarTropics on Friday. Something with a name that ended in Cola came up and we wondered if that was one of the StarTropics villages. After much research, we found that it wasn't, but it left me humming the title theme to StarTropics and being called big dorks by the other people there.

I thought Agricola was the name of one of the villages. In retrospect, it was probably a bit erudite for the audience Nintendo was aiming at. Also, I had the dungeon music in my head the rest of the night.

12-09-2008, 03:36 AM
I loved startropics and this just reminds me why.. of course when I played it I got my mom addicted as well and since we rented the game when it came to the "note" not having it lead my mom to staying up all night figuring it out.

12-09-2008, 10:02 AM
I love the music links, it really puts me in the game. How long is this game anyway? It's only $5 on VC, right?

12-09-2008, 10:45 AM
It's a pretty short game when you know the tricks. 2 or 3 hours? Definitely only an afternoon. But if you're getting your hat handed to you repeatedly (like in this grueling chapter) it could take a few days.

♪Shipwrecked♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Shipwrecked.mp3)
The life of a sailor is a dangerous one...

♪Stranded♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Stranded.mp3)

♪Overworld♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/overworld.mp3)
How did we end up outside a sub? Well, let's see what we can do.


A generous man living nearby gives us a drink, which is good, because:

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Dungeon.mp3)
Not too far is a dungeon. Looks like there's a village on the other side. According to the coconut man, under their thatched roofs and grass skirts they have the means to fix a sub!


Rare dodo birds! Now I know why they went extinct: they had to be killed to open doors. You or me, buddy.


Some Bolos for us. Bolos have the same power as the Yoyo, but can fly the range of the whole screen.


These next two rooms contain deadly Ninja Monkeys.
Yes, that sounds rediculous. I admit to making it up.

(they're not deadly at all)


The chest will block the first Looper from getting you, and can easily be dispatched before you open it. Time a good jump as you pick up the bolos to avoid the rush of the other two.


A new dangerous yet ubiquitous obstacle, the next room contains three cascading, submerging tiles. Jump on the first on as it rises, like all submerging tiles, and move quickly onwards. When in midair, release and then hold in the A button to jump immediately upon landing. If don't think you can make it to the end, you can rest on one the tiles to the side.


Yes, those are ostriches with human skulls. They will jump across water to persue you, but pause briefly before they do. That's the opportunity to attack them.


The game's first dark room. As you enter, you can get a quick glimpse before the lights go out, so try to memorize the layout.


If you're too afraid to jump in the dark, you can take the exit to the left. If you go up the stairs, though, you'll leave the tunnel and have to start over. Just turn around to get a second chance at seeing the room's layout.


It takes a leap of faith to look for the switch that opens the north door. Remember, the game works on a grid, so it's not hard at all to make sure you're in the right place. When we land on this tile, it glows red and restores the lights. This was just an introduction; later dark rooms are more devious.


That must be Miracola, and beyond that, a tall mountain. I get this feeling that it's going to be a long chapter.

12-09-2008, 10:48 AM
♪Town♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Town.mp3)

Have you noticed the (awesome) naming pattern yet?


I didn't want you around anyway (*sniff*)

Why does everyone ask me that?


Did I say Coral? I meant Mira!



Anyone care to guess what we're going to be concerned with in this chapter?


The people on this island are all right!


I appreciate you trying to help, but we all know how things like this work. The fact that I shouldn't go means that it's essential to my adventure. Thanks for trying, though.


Now that everyone in the village has had a chance to bend my ear, let's head to that palatial hut in the middle of town.


It's really the silly things like this that make me love this game.

♪Southern Cross♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Southern Cross.mp3)

Let's take a look. Oddly enough, the princess's room is accessible only via secret back door.


She doesn't have much to say, naturally.


What kind of strange things will happen on our journey to the mountain hermit?
I'm sure it will be pretty straightforward.


Octopus Prime
12-09-2008, 05:27 PM
I'm not sure which chapter is longer and/or more ridiculous; this one or 6.

12-10-2008, 07:33 AM
This one. 6 seems longer than it really is since it's pretty much the only time the game lets you break loose from the rails and do a semblance of free exploring.

Chapter 3 is just a gauntlet.

12-10-2008, 08:45 AM
♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/Startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)

The first dungeon this chapter was just a warm up. Now it kicks into gear.


Step forward, jump. Repeat twice and exit.


These guys are dealt with the same way as last time.


Moving on, we-




This room scrolls, and so we're only able to get a glimpse part of it before the darkness fell. We have to rely on other means to navigate the room.


This is one of my favorite rooms. You have to know how the monsters behave in order to get through it. The Loopers charge as normal, but they can't swim. When it can't go on, it'll turn around. Only one comes within one tile of us, revealing the safe place to jump.


Similarly, watch the Octo move around. He can jump across water like Mike, but must land on solid ground.


Killing the Octo opens the west wall, and the third tile shows us just what we managed to navigate in the darkness. Before we go on, though...

♪Sanctuary♪ (http://thedeemer.com/Startropics/music/Hidden area.mp3)

Stand on that tile and manually jump down. You'll land in a secret room with some medicine. I'd posit that this room would be impossible to find the first time through the game, since a first-time player has so far only gone room to room in pre-defined passageways. A transistion like this would not yet have occurred to him.

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/Startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)

These Gadfly enemies are a bit irritating. They fly back and forth for a bit, then charge at your location diagonally, making them deceptively hard to avoid. A switch opens the door.


Cascading tiles again, but the "rest" tiles are at the end. Since you could just as easily leave the room from the top tile, why are they there? Landing on one of them makes hearts appear, that's why.


This dungeon is getting deep...


Is it getting hot in here?

♪Danger zone♪ (http://thedeemer.com/Startropics/music/dandger zone.mp3)
It's getting serious, now.

12-10-2008, 08:51 AM

This cute sign with Mikey's face is a "Try-your-luck" sign. It will randomly give us one, two, or negative(!) one lives. Without lives to spare, it always grants a bonus, so don't be afraid to pick it up if you're on your last one.


Yet another thing borrowed from Link's first excursion, the Stopwatch will either stop or slow the enemies in the room, converting them to a keen greyscale in the process. It doesn't last long, so get Yoyo-ing.


There are some ugly lava monsters in this room that managed to evade my screenshot attack. They pop up, fire twice, and sink back down. According to this monster's instruction manual entry (http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v373/DeeMer/Startropics/img011.jpg), we are now in the Lava Swamp. Let me repeat that:


Every game should have a lava swamp.


This room has some bolas, but more importantly, two ways forward (three if you kill the Mad Muddy, but...).
I'm thinking... right.


Looks like the left way had some hearts. Dang. Let's stubbornly go on.


Well, looks like I went the right way after all!
(Brick's 2nd favorite room!)
I'm going to go back for those hearts, though.


There's horizontal cascading tiles here, but if you've made it this far you should be able to handle any direction.


The door behind closes and the door ahead opens. This empty room is sort of pointless...

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/Startropics/music/Boss Battle.mp3)
Unless, you see it as a Mega Man style boss-gate.

Magma the Fierce will fire two streams of bullets to either side of you, and finish with a single shot on your location. Combine that with the two fires circling around the room and the awkward nature of tile-to-tile travel, movement in this room is very stop-and-go. Always wait for that last shot before moving to the next tile, combining the necessary jumping with dodging.

Weapons have no effect, even those bolas we picked up in the last room. So we need to try something else. Better have a look around.


This tile in the corner reveals a switch for us. Luckily, M. Fierce can't fire behind himself. However, to compensate he fires *all* his bullets straight to the left, leaving a very small window to hit to the switch and the get out of the way.


Hitting the switch removes one of the red supports. There's still another support left, so we need to find another switch.


Oh, there it is, RIGHT NEXT TO HIS FLAMING BODY OF TERROR. Dodging his shots while that close is tricky; depend on your sense of timing. Use the same careful movements throughout the battle to reveal and trigger each switch.


Both supports gone, his platform slowly disintegrates, plunging him into the water in what I'm sure is a very cruel and agonizing death.
Did you ever notice how some video game bosses die in incredibly gruesome or inhumane deaths without a second thought?
Never mind where that water came from in a Lava Swamp, or why he chose this room as his lair.

♪Victory!♪ (http://thedeemer.com/Startropics/music/victory!.mp3)
Thus victorious, we make our way back to surface level and out of the cave.

Next time: Girls and Ghouls!

12-10-2008, 08:53 AM
God I hate the next dungeon something fierce.

Octopus Prime
12-10-2008, 02:58 PM
The next dungeon is where I stopped with the VC release.

I'm sorry, but it's not a very fun place!

12-10-2008, 06:57 PM
Oh man, I remember the dark room with the loopers. I forget if there's another room like that in the game or not, but that's one of my favorite challenges - you get to see the path that leads to the next screen, and then have to know something about the enemies in order to keep going.

The set of rooms with two paths, though - that's just cruel. I know I've died there more than once because I forgot which way the "right" path was (PUN).

12-10-2008, 09:49 PM
I remember being stumped by the upcoming dungeon, but it wasn't too bad. My big qualm was the constant reusing of the mirror/revealer object for every room.

12-11-2008, 10:21 AM
♪Overworld♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/overworld.mp3)

Nearby is a castle. Didn't someone say something about a castle?


Right. We'd better enter.

♪Shecola♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Shecola.mp3)



Let's try the back door.


That's a camp? One person, underground, and in someone else's castle? These islands are weird.


G-G-Ghosts!? Wicked!


The Ghost Village is probably on the other side of this tunnel.


Two rooms in, a dead end. There's a switch, but it doesn't seem to work.
"Oh well. Guess you better head on back."

Boy there sure are a lot of mountains there i bet we cant go there oh look a secret passage
<Intentional bad Grammar? -Chris><'Tis. -Alex>



That green, sickly looking building must signify the Ghost Village.

12-11-2008, 10:25 AM
♪Graveyard♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Graveyard.mp3)

This music confirms my suspicions. Oh, and the headstones, too.
Oddly enough, they bear crosses. You know, the same crosses that weren't allowed on to be on hospitals or used against vampires?
Anyway, that lake holds the Crystal Ball. It's just a matter of retrieving it somehow.


One of these tombstones is a little different than the others...

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)

You guys don't like this dungeon? I think this is my favorite one. But I'm also drinking hot chocolate out of a Spider-shaped mug right now, and I hang up the same spider-lights for both Halloween and Christmas.


Bonedogs! Adorable and a little troubling. They rush you, but can't cross water.


Skulls are identical to Octos, except they take 2 hits. And have 2 eyes. And they're undead. But otherwise identical.


Going through the obvious north exit gives us two hearts, but forces us to take the stairs and leave the dungeon. Devious.


Go around the bottom to reveal and reach this switch, opening the way south.


There seems to be some sort of mysterious damaging force here. Just more of the game's cruelty, I suppose.


Hey Link! Why are all your enemies in my game? These "Muumus" are so identical to Gidbos it's not funny: Mummies that slowly lumber along, take 8 hits to kill and do 2 hearts of damage? Boot up the first Zelda, and take on a Gidbo with the wooden sword and no ring. IDENTICAL.
<I'm sure you verified this. -Chris> <Yes. -Alex>
These are dangerous enemies, but easy to handle: let one (one!) approach you head on and go wild on it with the Yoyo. Each hit stuns it, and the closer it gets, the faster you can fire. You should kill it before it touches you. In a bind, attack from across the water.


Killing them opens the door, but don't leave without opening the chest, revealing this awesome item, the Rod of Sight.


An ordinary looking room, but:


The Rod tells a different tale. These ghosts, Minies, if you will, are what were hitting me two rooms ago. Taking damage mysteriously is a good clue to use the Rod. They move back and forth rather quickly, making them even more likely to hit you when you can't see them. Now given form, they can be seen and easily defeated.


If you go through the only exit to the south...


Now you have even more to do over than the first time!


Instead, blow open this wall.

12-11-2008, 10:26 AM

More ghosts here. Kill them all to open a way east.

♪Sanctuary♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Hidden area.mp3)

A sanctuary with no medicine, but two hearts.


Aw, what the heck!? A staircase? I went through the secret exit in the last room and only got a few hearts for my trouble!


Wait, this slug was hiding a secret passage! If you're not paying attention, you'll miss this and end up leaving for no reason, thinking you did something wrong again. Very devious.


On the way to pick up the hearts down there, something hits me. You know what that means...


Defeating them all opens a sanctuary with four more hearts.


This room with a cannon marks the checkpoint.


More darkness. However, this room has the ominous sound of submerging tiles. In the dark, you can't tell if they're down or up!


This switch opens a way south.


After fighting through a room full of mummies later and we find a room with a prize: a Lantern.


Back in the dark room we walk through a false wall, then use our Lantern.
The light lasts for about 5 seconds, and the Lantern has limited use, but it's more than enough to get through the room and past the submerging tiles. Also, here are some more Rod charges.


Mr. Armstrong here pops out of the ground to chuck a bullet at us. Jump over the bullet and attack.

♪Danger♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Danger zone.mp3)

Two cannons, two mummies, dangerous music and a big skull. Let's just get moving.


There's nothing here! At least they didn't boot me out of the dungeon again.


No enemies, no switches; what do I do?

You can see a bit of land on the top of the screen. Remember that hidden room last dungeon? This is where you learn the trick. Go to the top and manually jump into the next room.

12-11-2008, 10:28 AM
♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)

This would be a good time to mention that Muumus, unlike most other monsters, can walk onto and across tiles like they weren't there. Don't let them catch you off guard.


These next few rooms have ghosts to kill. There's a Rod in the room to the left if you need more charges.


This is a magic mirror, needed to kill the enemies in the next room (borrowed from Zelda 2?). It has 80 charges, more than more than enough.


This room has 6 Mummies and nowhere to hide. It can be deadly if you're not careful. As they chase you around the room, they sort of clump together into a conga line. Attack two or three times, step away, turn around and repeat.


This room has some bolas and little else. The switch opens the way south, but...


This lone Minie in the corner opens a room with 4 hearts when defeated. Unlike the other rooms with ghosts, this one can't hurt you. You'd only find him using the Rod on a whim.


A more Skulls, Wizards, and Rods.


Four cannons and nothing. Of course, in this dungeon, we know that nothing really means:

♪Boss music♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)
Yes, the boss music doesn't start until you use the Rod. Another little detail I love.
Maxie flys back and forth, pausing occasionally. Meanwhile, the cannons fire and Minies will materialize from the corners of the room to make a beeline for you.


Dodge the bullets and fire the Bolas at him.
If you run out, or if you're daring, he comes into Yoyo range at the sides of the screen.


It doesn't take much to bring him down, but he's hard to hit.
♪victory♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Victory!.mp3)
One pointless room later:
♪silence♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/nothing.mp3)
The music stops and we're trapped with this sepulchre fixture.
♪victory♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Victory!.mp3)
Jumping on the top tile three times causes the skull to spew water and the music to return.

♪graveyard♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/graveyard.mp3)
With the lake drained, the lost Crystal ball is accessible.

12-14-2008, 06:07 PM
♪Shecola♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Shecola.mp3)
Back at Shecola castle:

Why, yes. What do you have in mind?


*Girlish squeal*



I'm going to take a moment out to mention that "Radicola" is my favorite thing to say, ever.


Ever use a female Warrior in Draqon Quest III? This is where they live. They just ship out as needed, since there's really nobody in the Coral Sea to declare war on.


Note the weightlifting women here.


Let's go see the Queen.
♪Queen Shecola♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Shecola chief.mp3)

Ah, peerless beauty. (You probably saw this one coming.)


The Yoyo was cute, but now we can do some real damage. The Star is twice as strong, and fires spikes beyond the range of the physical weapon.


Our job here done, we can ditch our drag.


12-14-2008, 06:08 PM
With the magic word in tow, we return to the small tunnel.
♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)



If your life falls below 6 hearts, the Shooting Star reverts back to the Yoyo, so try to be careful.


This dungeon is extremely short and uneventful; absolutely nothing to note.

♪Overworld♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Overworld.mp3)

Finally, our destination. First, the hut.


No, I don't think I do like your poems, Po.

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Dungeon.mp3)

This is the fifth and final dungeon of this long, long chapter.



Those two tiles up top can't be reached! What a pointless, miserable existance!


You insidious bastards.
These tiles won't reveal themselves until you jump onto them, an even greater test of faith then the dark rooms. Unfortunately, all we get out of it is a worthless bat.


With the extra range and damage of the Shooting Star, these guys are nothing now.


These happy tiles will sink when you land on them, so get those toes moving!


A first time player wouldn't think anything of two unreachable tiles a few rooms back, but she'd be scratching her head here.


We get some Bola to reward our daring jump into oblivion.

12-14-2008, 06:10 PM
I know what this means.

♪Danger♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Danger Zone.mp3)

These Kappa hop out of the lava and make a mad dash for us. They can be somewhat troublesome.


Stepping on this tile to the left makes a double heart appear, but it'd be impossible to get them with the way the tiles submerge. Picking up the clock will stop the tiles long enough to claim the prize. Just make sure that you time the pickup correctly, with the tiles in the right position.


This room has a deadly combination of submerging and sinking tiles. You can jump straight up and down on a sinking tile to stall, since it will float back up before you land. Just don't hold still. Don't panic, or it's curtains for you.


The top exit is a dead end, but you can head left for some pick-me-ups.


Head right to make progress. Don't let the floating bones here scare you, just kill a few Kappa.


These green Mover-like enemies are pretty mellow.


Until you hit them. Then they bug out and charge you. Use the range of the Shooting Star to give yourself enough time to dodge.


♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Dungeon.mp3)
Almost out, folks!


Mad Muddies can live in non-lava swamps, too.


These big purple guys always reminded me of The Maxx, but there's little actual resemblance beyond being big and purple.

They're slow and have no ranged attacks, but they have more HP than Muumus, so don't go toe-to-toe without the Star.


That waterspout is the goal (remember Po's poem?) but you can't get there from here. Looks like the top and bottom entrances are no good, either.


These final rooms go around in a loop, and if they were a NumPad this room would be the 6 key. Killing the monsters opened the way south, but there's no switches to open the way west.


Sometimes you just gotta be stubborn and force your way through the wall.

12-14-2008, 06:14 PM

♪Southern Cross♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/The Southern Cross.mp3)


♪Awaken♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Annette's Awakening.mp3)

Isn't it touching, folks?

♪All ahead full♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/and he's off!.mp3)

And thus closes the longest chapter in the game.

I bitched about it a lot, but it's not so bad.

12-14-2008, 06:19 PM
Quite enjoying so far, especially since I'm horrible at most NES era games and know I'd never make it to the end if I tried to play it through myself. Keep it up.

12-15-2008, 08:47 AM
I remember first playing this game at a lock-in when I was probably all of twelve or thirteen years old (that would be fourteen or fifteen years ago now), and I got it and the sequel for Christmas a couple of years later. Reading this has made me go dust off the cartridges and start playing again.

Incidentally, are you planning a Let's Play of the sequel?

12-15-2008, 09:45 AM
Though I'm not as familiar with the sequel - I've only played it once, as a rental, long ago when I was 9 or 10 - I was considering it.

12-15-2008, 09:52 AM
The leap-of-faith jumps aren't as bad as the insta-kill death trap rooms, but I still declare them to be some ol' bullshit.

I seem to remember liking the sequel a lot more than the original, but then I played it several years before as well. It must not have turned me off of the basic StarTropics gameplay because, you know, if it had I'd never have picked up the original.

I do remember a Wild West stage where you have to find gold nuggets, and one of them says "THIS IS NOT A GOLD NUGGET IT IS A CHICKEN NUGGET! YUM!" or something like that, which caused me to laugh hysterically.

12-15-2008, 11:11 AM
The sequel does away with a lot of what you've described as bullshit in the original game. I always did dislike being killed for my greed in the first dungeon, but the leap-of-faith jumps never bothered me much, for whatever reason. To the best of my knowledge, though, there are no leap-of-faith jumps or sudden and unavoidable deaths in the sequel, and in general, the jumping puzzles have been toned way, way down. You still do a lot of jumping, but there's very little switch-hunting like the first game, so it's more like straight platforming. And while the game is still laid out in a grid, you aren't restricted to it the way you are in the original.

That said, there are still some frustrating bits in StarTropics 2, but they're tedious instead of arbitrarily fatal. I'm looking at you, Wild West-themed chapter.

Basically, I guess what I'm trying to say is that if you liked StarTropics but were frustrated by its bullshit, you might want to take a shot at the sequel.

12-15-2008, 11:28 AM
Startropics 2 suffers from the "fixes some of the problems but loses a lot of its charm" problem that seems to plague a lot of sequels.

12-15-2008, 12:50 PM
It's a miracola! I'd also read an LP for the sequel. I tried it on an emulator a while back, but I don't remember how far I got before I lost interest. I think I might have been locked in jail. I do remember being able to walk diagonally, that was a trip.

12-15-2008, 09:26 PM
♪New Chapter♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/New Chapter.mp3)

♪The Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/The sub-C.mp3)
Free of the neverending eternity of Chapter 3, we sail east and come upon a suspiciously fish-shaped Island.

♪Town♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/town.mp3)


Well, I guess this is a fishing town.


You know how fishing stories go.


Must be Baboo! There's nothing else in this town, so let's go find him.

♪The Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/the sub-c.mp3)
We don't have to go too far east before...

♪Inside the Whale♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/inside the whale.mp3)
Ah, swallowed by a whale. One of the oldest tricks in the book. There are a few options here: the Pinnochio, the Jonah, or the more recent Flapjack. Let's take a look around and see what we can do.


There's Baboo!


Looks like the Pinnochio for us.
Rats! I was looking forward to sleeping on a whale's tongue.

I like how he says "Let's" and means "You."


The whale's guts are a maze. You can get out of the Sub-C and walk on foot at some spots, and in others you can dive. Because you can only see a little bit at a time, it can get confusing, but I've done this so many times, I don't think I could get lost if I wanted to.


Dive here.


And here.

12-15-2008, 09:33 PM

You can pass through the wall here, but the sparkles that reveal it are only visible if you reached this place on foot.


From here, it's a direct route to the Lighter.


Dive here for a one-way shortcut back to Baboo.


It's getting smokier!


♪Overworld♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/overworld.mp3)

I don't have a letter with me... you mean that one I found in the bottle? That's gone.


♪Inside the Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Inside sub-c.mp3)

Oh, right, THAT letter.

If you're having trouble reading it, try adjusting your monitor's contrast.
Or, use this handy dandy transcription:

I found some strange ciphers in my last voyage.
Since then, someone has been watching me! I put
a tiny transmitter in my shoe.

Its frequency is 747 MHz.

Perhaps I worry too much, but better to be safe
than sorry.


This is StarTropics's most (in)famous moment.


To anyone who had the letter, this was the coolest thing ever. This combines "Get her frequency off of the back of the CD case," with The Hobbit's moon runes. I mean, feelies have had almost always had hints, but how many of them were SECRET like this? In fact, I don't think I've since seen another paper in my life that had secret wet letters.

To anyone who didn't have the letter, this is where you started to cry (except Brick, who started crying a lot earlier :) ).
Anyone who rented or bought it used was out of luck, forced to enter codes one at a time or call up the ol' Game Counselor. Or quit.

Having long since lost my original, I bought another boxed copy at the Rogers, Ohio flea market just for a new letter. He even threw in a boxed copy of the sequel and I got them for $5 each!

Completely worth it.

12-15-2008, 09:58 PM
I like how he says "Let's" and means "You."

Of course, he's a member in good standing of Local 255. You know, the 8-Bit Adventure Game NPC Trade Union? Wouldn't want him to lose his job for violating code, would you?

Octopus Prime
12-16-2008, 08:34 AM
For all the griping it gets (mainly from me), I still like Chapter 3 more then Chapter 4.

Chapter 4 doesn't even have a proper dungeon.

12-16-2008, 09:06 PM
Same here. Though all I did was complain about the length, it's probably the best chapter. Behind this next one, I mean.

♪New Chapter♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/New Chapter.mp3)

♪The Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/the sub-c.mp3)
From where we start, we can see a dock, a town, and a galleon blocking our way.


If we move around a bit, we can see to the east a few caves and a grand-looking building, and a dive spot to the southeast.

First things first.

♪Town♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/town.mp3)


Take note of this.



Another village, another fat, mustachioed chief.


Um... partial credit.

♪Southern Cross♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/the southern cross.mp3)

Sometimes I wonder why silly things like this exist. Answering "no" has no long term effects at all. Well, until you say no to King Arthur in StarTropics II and he refuses let you take it back, you coward.


I first thought this scenario odd, that there were pirates and British in the South Pacific in 1680. But it's feasible: Sir Francis Drake had already circumnavigated the globe 100 years earlier, and pirates were pretty much everywhere. Sure, the ones in the Atlantic and Carribean are what immediately come to mind, but there was still plenty of piracy along the Indian and Western American coasts, too, and of course there were the Chinese and other pirates of the Orient. Wherever a ship could go (i.e., water) a pirate was there to chase it. Of course, if anyone wants to add to this, I'll gladly hear it.

So, let's see Peter.


Not far this way, a Giant Parrot has appeared.

♪Peter the Parrot♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/peter the parrot.mp3)

A gift? What do you get for the Parrot who has everything?

♪Inside Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/inside sub-c.mp3)
When we board the Sub-C, Nav-com informs us that he's still tracking the 747Mhz signal we gave him last chapter. Good to see he's a nice, dependable robot, working hard even when the boss isn't around.

12-16-2008, 09:09 PM

Entering the dive spot we spotted earlier, we reach the far side of the eastern Isle.

♪Town♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/town.mp3)

Oh, that Nester!


Birds like worms, right?

♪Peter the Parrot♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/peter the parrot.mp3)

That doesn't mean anything!
That doesn't make any sense!

Lousy bird.

♪Overworld♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/overworld.mp3)

Nothing else to do but reach that ornate building over there.


That's not right...



♪Captain Bell's Legacy♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/captain bell's legacy.mp3)

It's nice to know that parrots are capable of oral tradition.

Let's see: 1990-1680=310
310 divided by 4 generations = 77.5 years.
I've heard that parrots can live to be 100, but do they normally have children so late in life?

A grand pipe organ rests here.

Do? Like, Do Re Mi, huh?

Wait, didn't that silly bird say something about Do-ing?

Mi... So... Fa.. Do.. Mi!

♪Piano♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/piano puzzlement.mp3)

Thank you, Peter! I love you!

♪Town♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/town.mp3)
There's a side path in this tunnel, but it's empty.

PSI Rockin'!


The tunnel lets us out at the shore and leads us to the dungeon proper.

A very tricky one, I might add.

Tune in tomorrow for the exciting conclusion!

12-16-2008, 09:18 PM
I'd point out why this entire chapter is ridiculous but Loki (http://comics.drunkduck.com/Nintendo_Super_Squad/pages/b5bb3d768fc84668c4829375c4fa5763.jpg) already did.

12-17-2008, 07:32 AM
Yes, exactly. It's best not to think about it.

12-17-2008, 12:27 PM
♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Dungeon.mp3)

This dungeon starts out like all the rest.

Except for that monster. What's he doing there? Maybe there's more to this room than usual.


Ah! Some hearts to get us up to Shooting Star level. Since the Heart Container just filled us up, they're not necessary now. But when one games over and end up back here, they're certainly handy.


The red Noctos are faster. They're also the only ones you need to kill to open the door. They might have more hit points, too, but it's moot with the Shooting Star.

♪Danger Zone♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Danger Zone.mp3)
The tension picks up quickly in this dungeon!
The tiles directly above and below the entrance make more more double hearts appear near the one already present.


Halfway through, the tiles start collapsing behind us(!!!), so we have to find the switch quickly and get out.

Theres just enough time to reveal the switch, hit the switch, and get 2 heart pickups, and get out.


As you head to the left, arrow-spears fly out of the walls at you. You can outrun them, unless two fire at once, in which case, JUMP!


The steel orb stays put and deals big damage if you touch it.


When you hit it with your weapon, it flies back and forth. Jump as it approaches and don't dawdle.

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)
Things seem to ease up a bit in this quiet room. There are 3 exits.


There are some hearts to the west, yes, but arrows start firing right away and continue throughout. Stay alert or you'll lose much more life than you gain. The other exits are unreachable.


To the south is a Try-your-luck sign, along with Green Ropers. They move, unlike their red cousins, but only charge if you're in front of them.


No goodies in this room, but there's got to be something to it. Maybe if I try walking through the walls-


I'm falling!

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Boss battle.mp3)
As soon as you land, these giant punjis start stabbing at you. The boss music even plays to add extra danger. It's not too hard to avoid them, but try not to get trapped.

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)
Each staircase takes you to a different corner, but only one is right. The rest lead you into more hidden holes. The rats will only walk on solid ground, so you can watch them.

12-17-2008, 12:29 PM
To progress, use the SE stairs, then walk through the false walls.


Moving along.

♪Danger Zone♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/danger zone.mp3)
More trouble.


Lots more trouble! The tiles collapse much faster than the other room. Panic sets in when you realize the door's locked, and you have all these tiles to check!


Luckily, a little logic states that since you get herded to this side of the room rather quickly, and these tiles are the last to collapse, the switch should be over here.

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)
This evil Blue Bowling Ball will flat out KILL you if you touch it, so don't. It rolls back and forth from one end of the room to the other, but there are lots of spaces to hide in as it passes. It also make an inexplicable airbrake sound and stops when it reaches the end of the room, so you always have an idea of what it's doing. In a pinch, hit it with your weapon to freeze it temporarily. As long as you're hitting it, it won't move, so there's little danger if you calm down.


You remember what the mirror does, right?

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)
These pirates are just like the wizards from the Ghost Village. But, you only need to kill the Looper to continue, so you don't need to bother with the mirror at all!


I didn't know that at the time, though, and slipped up while trying to fight them. Oops.


You restart in this room, and you'll be flattened quickly if you're not on the ball. So to speak.


You're almost forced to move in right angles in this room, since it's very difficult to deal with two orbs moving on the same path at once. That's a Rod of Sight in the center.


To the north is a very evil room with a few hidden hearts. Yes, that's a sinking tile that you start on, so move right away or drown.

♪Sanctuary♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/hidden area.mp3)
In to the west is an empty sanctuary with only a worthless Bat. There's a door, but no switch to open it.

Remember the Rod?

12-17-2008, 12:30 PM
Ah, medicine. Note the barriers.


Head south to get things back on track.

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)
This Green Bowling Ball, is just like the blue one, but with 50 % less room to maneuver in. You'll probably have to hit it to get through.

The door north takes us to where the medicine was, but it's unreachable from this way.

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)

Lots of bats, but no tricks here.


Two Big Bullies, but killing them does nothing. (pardon the flickering)


The switch opens a way east, but that takes us back to the sanctuary.


Check your pockets.


Here, you're forced to deal with two of these steel orbs. If you don't time it right, you won't be able to dodge both of them and take a few hits.


More punjis. They can poke through tiles, so don't think you're safe there. One of the tiles give hearts.


Keep moving left and jumping at the first opportunity. You'll make it fine. Otherwise, you're dealing with arrows, punjis, and submerging tiles in a deadly combo.

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)

The final, most evil Bowling Ball: Red.
It's the same room layout as Blue, but Red doesn't go down the hall, no. It only goes as far as the edge of the screen. Oh, and it doesn't stop all the time when it gets there, rolling back and forth continuously.

Here, you have to hit it to move on.

♪Whoops!♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/player miss.mp3)

♪Game over♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/game over.mp3)

When all your lives are gone, the Coralcola shaman appears and revives you, I guess.
Back to the beginning of the cave!


There are Ghost Pirates in this room, and unlike last time you need to beat them to proceed. I hope you got the mirrors in the last room...


A strange device resides at the end of the dungeon. The switch is on the other side of the wall though.

12-17-2008, 12:31 PM

But if you've made it this far, you shouldn't have trouble figuring out how to reach it.

♪God Save the Queen♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/americola (the sinking ship).mp3)

With the ship gone, we automatically sail through.

12-17-2008, 12:42 PM
Mi... So... Fa.. Do.. Mi!

The worst part about this puzzle is that even if you know the correct order to do them in ahead of time you still have to do the quest to feed the worm to the parrot before it'll take.

12-17-2008, 01:11 PM
Ah yes, the dungeon where you show your commitment to your uncle's principles of archaeology by sinking and destroying an important historical artifact.

12-18-2008, 11:29 AM
♪New Chapter♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/New chapter.mp3)

♪Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/the sub-c.mp3)

Like most of the other chapters, this one starts in the middle of the ocean.


And, like most of the other chapters, there's a landmass to the east.


Through the passage, a small town.

♪Town♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/town.mp3)



To this day, I still don't understand what's going on here. A definite source of frustration when I was younger, I was certain that there was some secret to this guy. I now resign myself to the fact that in this day of GameFAQs and ROM hacking, something would have been found were there something to find.

Still, I wonder.



Bananas! In your ears!


That's all this tiny town has to offer.

When we return to the Sub-C:
♪Inside the Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/inside sub-c.mp3)

We're close!!

♪Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/the sub-c.mp3)

Following Nav-Com's directions, we head north.


Of course, it's not going to be as easy as sailing north 49 squares and east 28 squares. There's a lot of navigating to do still. This is the first chapter you get to really use the Sub-C and do some actual exploration.


To start, dive here.


From this small pool, you can dive in each of the cardinal directions. We came from the west, and the north is a dead end.

12-18-2008, 11:31 AM

To the south is a small Island with a Big... Apple?



Everytime you board the Sub-C, Nav-Com fills you in.


To the east is another small island with a Big Heart.

Past it is the path onward.

♪Town♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/town.mp3)

Not far beyond is a mysterious hut...


One of the other great mysteries from Chapter 6 that bewildered me at the age of 12... until I learned who Robinson Crusoe was.
Still, the skeleton's lying in a pool of blood...

♪Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/the sub-c.mp3)

There is only a tree here, but you can see the passage from here.


In this arrow-shaped chain of tiny islands, there are five dive spots.


Only this one goes anywhere. The rest connect to each other.


There are a few more atolls here with more dive spots strewn about. It's easy enough to find your way through; dive at these two spots.


Out of your way in this maze is an island with nothing. Really, no secrets or anything.


As we head north on the right path, Nav-Com alerts us!



So close!


We've reached the source of the signal! Along with an extremely ominous-looking crater. Nowhere left to go but

12-18-2008, 11:32 AM
♪Sub-C♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/the sub-c.mp3)

Down. To a small undersea area, with a cave nearby. Not only does this place have a unique tileset, it's also the only time we can see the whole of the Sub-C. (Did you ever notice the eyes?)

Say goodbye to the Sub-C, this is the last we'll see of her.


The tunnel gets progressively darker as we enter.

♪Ruins♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/captain bell's legacy.mp3)

On the other side of the tunnel are these eerie ruins. Dr J. has to be somewhere inside!

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)

You'll notice right away that this dungeon has a more unique, perhaps more epic look.


The purple Loopers move like the green ones, but will charge when you line up with them, regardless of their facing.

♪Sanctuary♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Hidden area.mp3)

This is a new item: the Anklet.


It lets you jump twice as far, and gives you a nice orange shirt to show it's working.

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)

It only lasts for one room, though.


The goal here is to kill all of the Octots. There are two different trails of tiles in this room, and you might have to take both of them to hit all the targets. If you still have at least 6 hearts, you can use the range of the Shooting Star and attack sideways while jumping to get them all on the same trail that takes you to the door.


These 6 pink Muumus walk continuously counter-clockwise around the ring.
Jump into the gap and attack, retreating as needed. Once you hit the switch, you can attack safely from where the chest is.


Before we leave, some hidden treasure.


This tiny, slow Nautilus looks non-threatening, but absorbs more damage than one might suspect.

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)

This is first actual boss fight since Maxie in the Ghost Village.

Turboss here fights exactly like Octo the Huge, but without the benefit of the Magic Snowman.

♪Victory♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/victory!.mp3)

But we do have the Shooting Star, so he's not very hard, regardless.


Short dungeon.

12-20-2008, 02:43 PM
♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)

"Psyche!" As the kids say.


Only one way to go.


We know there's a tile right in front of us, so:


There's not much we can do from here. But we can see there's a hidden path from the last room to the Anklet, which will let us hit the light switch and manuvre around the room. But that last strip at the bottom is 3 tiles away, unreachable even whilst orange.


There's a hidden path down there, too, and the switch present blows a hole in the wall. That will stay open, so we don't have to worry about it when we leave the room to get the Anklet.


These "Wonder Horsehides" aren't worth using over the Shooting Star. Especially since they actually don't damage anything.


Remember when I said that the Magic Snowman was the second greatest item in the game? Meet the first.


The purpose of the Spiked Shoes is to flip out and kill everybody!

This is the only room these enemies exist in; their sole purpose to demonstrate the awesomosity of the boots.


Between the cannons and restricted movement space, it's somewhat hard to come out of this room without damage. There are a few hearts in here, though.


Since the enemies here can move freely and you can't, it's dangerous to fight normally. So leave your footprints in their faces, as Chie would say.


None of these tiles do anything. I checked all 96 of them, one at a time, just for you.


May as well use the shoes on these nobodies, because:

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)
After he emerges from the wall, Broken Joe (what?) will slowly worm back and forth towards you, like a Space Invader. He pauses to shoot snakes out of his mouth (?). At this point, jump the snake and pitch some fastballs down his gullet. That's the only weapon he's vulnerable to, so don't run out!


His eyes bulge out when he goes kaput.

♪Ruins♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/captain bell's legacy.mp3)

That dungeon was just the front door. More ruins abound.

12-20-2008, 02:45 PM

It's a lot more open on this end, and requiring the navigation of a short maze.


Since there's no danger outside of a dungeon, it's just a test of patience. Like Chapter 4, but far less complex. Be sure to get this Big Heart.




This! This is it! This is what Uncle Steve was dealing with, and why he's in trouble! And it's what caused that nasty hole up above.

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)
Directly behind the meteor is the next dungeon. There's a little trick in this part of the game: leave the dungeon and the Heart Container comes back! You can waltz back and forth and fill up your meter if so inclined. Just know that
1. That's nine trips, and
2. Your health at the beginning of each new chapter is predetermined, irrespective of how many or how few Heart containers you get.


Hmm, a complete dead end.


Whoops! I accidentally walked through this wall! But I can't do anything from here.


Here's the real path, back at the entrance.


Here we are on the right side of the wall.


Blades here. They're just the same as the punji logs a chapter back.


Ah, finally: a sub-weapon worth using.


Push B after firing to split the Asterisk into two separate stars that move out perpendicular. The power of the Right-Angle attack, dreaded in space shooters, is yours!


The spiked ball in the middle is just like the floating steel orbs of Chapter 5.
You shouldn't try to hit the snakes with your normal weapon, since they charge when you get next to them, so use the Asterisk instead.


To the left is a Sanctuary with 4 hearts. This dungeon's real generous with free hearts.

12-20-2008, 02:49 PM

To the left is a Sanctuary with 4 hearts. This dungeon's real generous with free hearts.


Those fuzzy bubble-like things move around the room in an erratic, mostly diagonal pattern. They do no damage when they hit you, but you can't attack for a short time afterwards. Why does that seem so familiar?

♪Sanctuary♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/hidden area.mp3)

It requires a manual jump north to continue, like that room in Chapter 3.


There's nowhere to jump from here, but you can pass through this wall.


So why is that last bit of land up there?


Well, well, well. How many of you knew that this was here?

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)
This guy can wreck your day. If he touches you, you take a whopping eleven hearts of damage. That's a whole bar. Also, when you line up with him, he'll fire a 4-way bullet and start moving towards you. You could try to attack him head-on, jumping the bullets while wailing away with the Shooting Star. This has risks, as not only do the bullets inflict 3 hearts of damage, the stun could let him catch you. The slower, safer method is to use the 90-degreeitude of the Asterisks to keep yourself out of harm's way.

For some reason, I took a real shining to this guy as a kid. He looked so cool and distinct! Imagine my surprise years later when I first saw this guy (http://digimon.wikia.com/wiki/Image:Shakkoumon_t.jpg) and learned that there was an origin to the design. And it goes to follow that Arahabaki (http://www.popanime.net/megami/wiki/index.php?title=Arahabaki) is one of my favorite Persona/demons.
On that note, it's probably the most Japanese thing in the game. Maybe the only thing?

♪Victory♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/victory!.mp3)
It's defeat makes a tile appear, and the tile generates a Try-your-luck sign.

Why would we need extra lives if we just beat the boss?

♪Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dungeon.mp3)

Yes, that's why.


Like I said, plenty of easy hearts.


This is very similar to an earlier room.


This strange enemy sorta teleport-walks in a straight line. When he hits the wall, he solidifies, but fires out in 3 directions. Like everything else here, Asterisks are the best solution.


What's red and friendly?


More teleporting rock-monsters here; there are five total but appear two at a time.


Do you like hearts?

12-20-2008, 02:50 PM

There's a pink walking rock-monster here, but more importantly:



Powerful monsters + disarming bubbles = be careful.


Of course, you get nothing for fighting. The real exit is through the left wall.

♪Sanctuary♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/hidden area.mp3)

You know, we got a lot of goods here: tons of Asterisks, 2 meds, most of my health.
Say, what was in the room right after the last Sanctuary? That doll, right?

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)

Two of them are more than twice as dangerous as one. You're going to want to use the throwing stars to stay safe unless you're real confident in your ability to control Mike.

♪Victory♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/victory!.mp3)

Are we done for real this time, or is this another psyche-out like the last two times?

12-20-2008, 02:52 PM
♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)
I hope you didn't believe that victory music again.

There's no visual indication (obviously), but you can pass through the wall to the left for a few more goods before the real boss.


Continue up the dark path to fight these twin statues. Even the boss room has some hidden hearts and stars (no horseshoes or clovers, though)

If you know what to do here, you've been paying attention. Give yourself a gold Star.

♪Victory (for real this time!)♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/victory!.mp3)

♪Ruins♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/captain bell's legacy.mp3)

Not far from the exit, you can see the crater again.


Dr. Marvin Monroe?

♪Southern Cross♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/the southern cross.mp3)

♪Dr. Jones♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/dr. jones.mp3)


If you go talk to him again:



Can a lone teenager defeat evil aliens? Even if he's not Japanese? Find out next!

Octopus Prime
12-20-2008, 05:47 PM
Directly behind the meteor is the next dungeon. There's a little trick in this part of the game: leave the dungeon and the Heart Container comes back! You can waltz back and forth and fill up your meter if so inclined. Just know that

I was so happy to learn that back when I first played the game.

The dungeon may be LOUSY with Hearts, but everything in it takes them all out with one shot.

12-24-2008, 12:03 PM
♪New Chapter♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/New Chapter.mp3)

It's not a far walk to the ship.

♪Inside the Spaceship♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Inside the Spaceship.mp3)

The first thing you notice is the new spacey tileset. Then, the spacey dungeon remix.


This dungeon is also a marked departure in structure:
Instead of a linear excursion with occasional branching rooms, it's completely open, with little direction and dangerous enemies. Other than that tiny tunnel in Chapter 3, this is the smallest dungeon, but because it's so difficult, you're probably going to be spending a lot of time with it.


This guy combines the worst qualities of every enemy: He's fast, can jump, does high contact damage, and to top it all off, he can shoot, too! Luckily, his bullets' range is shorter than the Shooting Star, so we can take him out fairly easily.

That X-tile to the left is a teleporter. That's our destination, the goal of this dungeon is to find it's partner tile.


One more room to the north are two cannons and a pill. Unlike the other cannons encountered in the game, these can be killed, but only when they open up to fire.


The pill, on the other hand, is Vitamin X, and fills our hearts to the Maximum maximum, giving our skin a healthy red hue in the process. Every five seconds or so, you'll lose half a heart until you're back down to your actual max life.


Also here is a secret room that can be opened by attacking the wall a few times. There's really no indication or hint that this is possible; there're plenty of these rooms later on but they have cracks. In fact, in all the times I've played this game, this time was the first I've found this room and the precious Spiked Shoes within. I was previously under the impression that there was only one in the game.


The teleporter present takes us to another room. See that pink biking alien? They're the Medusa heads of StarTropics. With all that that implies.


I decided that wasn't where I wanted to be, so I teleported back and went right.


Then south.


Take the north teleport to get the medicine seen earlier.


These green aliens are much more deadly than they're yellow friends. Not only do they do more damage, their shots have far more range! It would be very stupid to fight it here.

...but since that wall has the same appearance as the one I broke down earlier, on a hunch I try to attack it, too.


Wow! I guess you're always learning, huh?


Instead of fighting, I head back to the teleporter and use the eastern one.

12-24-2008, 12:04 PM

It takes us past the green guy but on the same path, and I head south to this room.


This is where the dungeon's real danger is. There are about 5 of the deadly, deadly greenies here. My strategy used to be grabbing a Vitamin X and making a mad dash through, but now with the spiked shoes, they're easily dispatched from a distance! Excelsior!


The bikers only take one hit with the star, so if you're careful and methodical, you can make it through. But they're fast and you're jumping, so sometimes they can still take you by surprise.


This teleporter it the one we want. I also grabbed a Laser gun. It does the same damage as the Shooting Star, but with more range and speed, along with a cool sound. Probably the best weapon in the game. Plenty of ammo, too!


Here we are!

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)

These two Jet Packers fly around the room firing at you. Start off with your remaining boots, then switch to the gun. They're not too hard if you remember that you can attack perpendicular to your movement while in the air.

♪Victory!♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Victory!.mp3)

Man, I used to dread this dungeon, but with the discovery of the Spiked boots, it's a snap!

♪In search of the Cubes♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/In search of the Cubes.mp3)

Ok, let's find those cubes. Which of these stairs is correct? I'mma go wit' da one on da right.




The Super Nova requires 11 hearts to use. The damage isn't much higher than the star (2.5 damage compared to 2), but it's range is the whole of the screen. Plus, it also makes the same cool sound as the laser gun!

♪Inside the Spaceship♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Inside the Spaceship.mp3)

Next dungeon:


There's enough hearts to take us to 11, even from the 3 you'd have when you start a new life.


The range of the Nova makes beating these guys trivial.


This wall is clearly cracked and clearly breakable. There's medicine inside.


Those green things are mobile turrets, only harmable when they attack.

12-24-2008, 12:07 PM

When you're on the same line as that hole, it will generate these fast-moving spike balls and launch them at you. They can be easily dispatched, however. The real nuisance of the room is the alien, since he has sufficient range to reach you.


No need to stick around here.


Bash the turrets to escape. Switch to the laser if you lose the range of the Nova.


These satellite enemies are weak and move predictably.


Past the cracked wall is the Electricity Gun. In terms of pure damage, this is the strongest weapon in the game. It also has a very wide shot. Since its ammo, range, and speed are inferior to the other gun, in most cases isn't the ideal weapon, but its wide shot is extremely helpful for fighting Greenies in close quarters.


More pills, guns, and spikes. You also start uncomfortably close to this alien, so try to beat him before you get the Vitamin X.


It's impossible to screen shot the whole thing, but an electric wall will appear intermittently in this room. It's easy enough to not jump through it, but it also blocks your attacks.


The barrier's in this room, too. I should mention that it only blocks your shots, not the enemies'. The Orange gun is very useful here.


The red satellites move like the greys but fire at you.

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)

This lone brown Jetpacker functions much like a slower Octo the Huge or Turboss, but actually comes down far enough to touch you, and it never stops shooting, making it an actual threat. Keep moving, sneaking in shots when you can.

♪Victory♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Victory!.mp3)

The north wall's cracked, but there's nothing inside.

♪Spaceship♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/inside the spaceship.mp3)

Here's the checkpoint. It's easy enough when well-armed, but when you've just revived and only have the Shooting Star and no guns, it's quite dangerous. Never underestimate the green aliens. The cracked wall has another 20 shots of orange.


This room is more annoying than it should be. It's full of the red, firing satellites, and for some reason they always hit me a few times, reducing my range, thus making them even more annoying.


Last room before the end. The glowing tiles deal a crippling 7 damage, and move slowly your way. There's a safe pattern, but I usually bungle it.

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)

As you hit the Osteroid, it will stagger back, revealing a switch. Hitting this switch makes another switch appear, and hitting that one will remove a portion of the floor.

12-24-2008, 12:09 PM
♪Victory♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/Victory!.mp3)

From there, knock him into the whole.

I swear, swear, swear that I killed him once as a child through straight-up damage, and one website backs up my claim, but I was unable to duplicate it, i.e. impatient. It must be a lot of damage.


♪Search♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/in search of the cubes.mp3)
Upon exit, there's a real maze waiting. Lot's of dead ends!


We're going to need them all.


♪Liftoff♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/34 SFX.mp3)
♪Movement♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/35 SFX.mp3)
Next is the final chapter, folks!

12-24-2008, 01:13 PM
God, I remember getting stuck in the spaceship area because it was so hard. The aliens are brutal.

12-29-2008, 09:02 AM
♪New Chapter♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/new chapter.mp3)

♪Spaceship beeping♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/35 SFX.mp3)

♪Spaceship♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/in search of the cubes.mp3)

The last chapter is very short, but very intense. It's only a few steps to the final dungeon.

But before make it that far...
♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)

Let this be a lesson to always keep a pair of bananas on hand to ward off Physchic intrusion.

♪Alien Dungeon♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/inside the spaceship.mp3)

Even though we have a 22-heart life meter, you still start every life with just 3. This comes into play immediately:

♪Boss Battle♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)

First room in, and Zoda attacks! He slinks back into the darkness and reappears as a cruel alien visage.


There's a Lazer gun in the room, fortunately, so use it to plug him as fast as you can. After a few seconds, he becomes immune to damage and fires three pairs of eyballs at you. You can only afford to be hit once.


After he shoots some oculars at you, he'll fade out and begin a new attack. Sometimes, a hand will appear and sweep across the arena. It always kills, so stay in the middle inbetween Zoda's attack phases to give yourself the best chance of outrunning it.

♪Victory♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/victory!.mp3)

After 20 or so solid hits from the gun, the face is defeated and reforms into Zoda...


Which reforms again into this pink, Parasaurolophus-like monster, and retreats into the darkness.

♪Aliens♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/inside the spaceship.mp3)

This dungeon has a unique design that makes it look like a side-scroller, but the controls funtion the same. They are also kind enough to give away a Vitamin X to refill our health.


These new, gold-colored aliens are actually a bit less threatening than the greens, doing less damage and having less range.


There are a few windows with red aliens shooting out at you, but it's not worth the time or effort to kill them. Just run by and you won't get hit by them.


The tile here will open up every so often and either a gold or green alien will hop out to either side. Unlike the similar opening tiles in the last chapter, falling into this hole will actually take you into a new room, not kill you outright.


The bad news is that this room is full of dangerous aliens.

12-29-2008, 09:04 AM

The good news is that once you kill them all, not only do you get all your health and ammo back, but a room opens up that gives you an orange gun and 3 medicines.


The strange thing about this room is that the enemies will stay dead when you come back out. They'll be back if you fall in again, though. The pill and Lazer gun will also return, but not the Meds and Elec gun.


You end up back here when you're done, but at least you don't have to fight Zoda again.

Unless you die.


Past that tile, and it's a very short jaunt to:


The ship's reactor. This can be a very short, easy fight, or a long, frustrating one. The four tiles in this room open up periodically. The bottom two release golden spiked balls. They can be defeated, but take two hits unlike their red cousins. A gold alien will hop out of one of the two top tiles. Should you be standing on a tile when it opens, or accidentally walk into a hole, you'll be taken back to the basement.


The reactor can only be harmed when the core opens. You know this, you've played video games before. But, when the reactor will heal when it closes. This is where the frustration comes in. You're scrambling to damage it before your work gets erased, but the only clear shot is either in the line of fire of the spikes, or on top of a tile that could open at any moment.

The best strategy is probably to stand all the way back, firing with the laser when possible and killing the fired spikes as they approach. They can't be jumped over. Deal with the alien only if he comes near.

♪Spaceship♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/in search of the cubes.mp3)

With the reactor destroyed, everything takes on a broken-down appearance.


Over the course of the next few rooms, these evil Koosh balls continually trickle down from the north to attack. At the end, with only one tile left to spawn on, they can be killed repeatedly for easy hearts and stars.

♪Boss♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/boss battle.mp3)

Zoda's back, in the final battle! He's capable of hopping around on the tiles as well as freely walking about on the floor. When you line up with him, he fires some bullets from his navel, and when you're not he coughs up more creatures to attack. And you die instantly if he touches you.


The difficulty in this battle comes from the fact that your weapons only go as far as the screen's edge, and if he's not visible he can't be harmed, even if you're lined up with him. Take shots when they're available, and don't let him get too close. The creatures can still drop life, but it's unreasonable to try grinding health back from them.

♪Victory♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/victory!.mp3)

I managed to royally bungle this fight, but miraculously somehow still beat him with one heart and the Yoyo! When defeated, he foams and drools something fierce before disappearing for good.

♪Spaceship♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/in search of the cubes.mp3)
For some reason, the music changes back here...


But it doesn't mean anything. Let's get that cube!


Gotta hurry!



12-29-2008, 09:06 AM
♪Ship Explodes♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/33 SFX - Spaceship Explod'.mp3)

Looks like we found an escape pod!


Unfortunately, Mikey can't swim!

♪Death♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/player miss.mp3)

♪Victory♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/victory!.mp3)

Luckily, another kind of pod was nearby and an old friend brings us to safety.


Looks like Uncle Steve has returned to C-Island in the Sub-C.



It sure is!




Show some respect! Those 'nanas saved my life!


The cola refills your life... but there's nothing you need it for anymore.

Inside the Chief's hut:


12-29-2008, 09:10 AM
With congratulations in place, let's get down to business:


You can't tell in screenshots, but the colors are changing and flashing incredibly quickly.

♪Mica♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/mica.mp3)

♪The End♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/the end.mp3)

That's it!

♪Credits + Slideshow♪ (http://thedeemer.com/startropics/music/staff roll_slideshow.mp3)
But you should always stick around 'till the credits are done!

Chapter 1

The C-Serpent

Chapter 2

The Lighthouse

Octo the Huge

The Dolphins

Chapter 3

Ghost Village

Maxie and the Rod of Sight

Mike Plays Dress-up

12-29-2008, 09:11 AM
Mountain Spring


Chapter 4

Inside the Whale

The Letter

Chapter 5

Peter the Parrot

Mike Jones and the Tem-Bell of Doom!

Bell's Ship

Chapter 6

The Sub-C Dives

Broken Joe

Chapters 7 & 8

Alien Attack

Prime Invader Zoda

The Alien Spaceship is Destroyed

Mike Victorious

Bananas in Your Ears!

(now you know how Lakupo got his avatar)


That's the end of Mike's adventure in the Coral Sea.

My goal in this Let's Play was to transfer every room, every bit of text, every song, every feeling of StarTropics so that even someone who has never touched the game will feel like they have played it after reading this. So, let me know how close I came.

12-29-2008, 09:14 AM
My goal in this Let's Play was to transfer every room, every bit of text, every song, every feeling of StarTropics so that even someone who has never touched the game will feel like they have played it after reading this. So, let me know how close I came.

I'll say this: I hate this game with the passionate fire of a thousand alien suns, but I enjoyed following this LP. I'd say mission accomplished!

12-29-2008, 09:21 AM
This game has such a great ending. Definitely one of the best endings on the NES. Are we going to see a Zoda's Revenge LP soon?

12-29-2008, 10:52 AM
I've been getting an itch to play through it, at least. The fortuitous and coincidental arrival on VC and Fun Club seals the deal. Once I have a more intimate familiarity with it, we'll see if an LP is feasible. (read: in a few months)

I'll say this: I hate this game with the passionate fire of a thousand alien suns, but I enjoyed following this LP. I'd say mission accomplished!

Thanks! It means the most coming from you.

12-29-2008, 11:40 AM
It's a Zaku!
My goal in this Let's Play was to transfer every room, every bit of text, every song, every feeling of StarTropics so that even someone who has never touched the game will feel like they have played it after reading this. So, let me know how close I came.
I had already played it before, but seeing all the text and the connected screenshots that showed the whole room brought on the nostalgia. The links to the music though, that really sealed the deal. That dungeon theme is just so damn catchy and hearing it playing while reading the LP made it even better.

TK Flash
12-29-2008, 06:47 PM
Congratulations on an LP well done. I know I beat this game a few years ago but surprisingly I didn't remember any of it. Here's hoping for a Zoda's Revenge LP.

12-29-2008, 09:00 PM
For my part, I really enjoyed it. Great job, and I just hope I can manage mine half as well as you managed this one. Anything on your plate for a sequel?

12-29-2008, 09:26 PM
I can't remember if I ever finished this game or not, but this was excellent to read!

12-29-2008, 11:53 PM
The music links totally made it. Great LP!

Octopus Prime
12-30-2008, 01:00 AM