Retro Game Challenge - Cosmic Gate Strategy Guide (version 1.00 - February 18, 2009) by Walter "WillyFourEyes" Williams (f.k.a. SiliconHero, MoonsaultKid) ******************************************************************************* * DISCLAIMER/CONTACT INFORMATION * ******************************************************************************* This mini-game strategy guide was written by Walter Williams (pen name: WillyFourEyes), and is intended for personal/private use. No part of this guide may be reposted in any form without permission from the author. Retro Game Challenge (a.k.a. Game Center CX) is the property of Namco Bandai Games Ltd., Fuji Television, and its various publishers, including XSEED Games in North America. Additions, corrections, strategies, and omission notes are always welcome. If you have any additional tips for this mini-game, or ideas for improving this guide, please send an e-mail to willygamer (at) with the subject line "Retro Game Challenge - Cosmic Gate FAQ". This, and other guides of mine, can eventually be found at my personal website: ******************************************************************************* * TABLE OF CONTENTS * ******************************************************************************* 0. VERSION HISTORY 1. ABOUT THE GAME 2. CONTROLS 3. ENEMY TYPES 4. SCORING 5. GENERAL TIPS 6. CHALLENGES 7. SPECIAL THANKS ******************************************************************************* * 0. VERSION HISTORY * ******************************************************************************* 1.00 - February 18, 2008 - Guide completed. ******************************************************************************* * 1. ABOUT THE GAME * ******************************************************************************* Cosmic Gate is the first of eight games given to you as challenges from Game Master Arino. This is a fixed shooter in the vein of Galaga, where you have to defeat waves of aliens with a spaceship equipped with lasers. The enemies will start by flying into formation from the top and sides of the screen., and then descend to attack one at a time once they've all formed up. On the third stage, and every fourth stage after that (7, 11, 15, etc.), you'll enter a bonus round where you fly through an asteroid field, and can score extra points by destroying asteroids. Crashing into one of them ends the bonus round. There are 64 stages in all, and most of them (except for the bonus rounds) can be completed in as little as 15 seconds. ******************************************************************************* * 2. CONTROLS * ******************************************************************************* D-Pad Left/Right = Move your ship back and forth. A/B Button = Fire lasers/missiles. Start Button = Start/pause the game. ******************************************************************************* * 3. ENEMY TYPES * ******************************************************************************* Pawns - The lowest-ranked enemy fighters that occupy the two bottom rows (ten each). They charge straight toward your ship area, but loop around to try and hit you again if they miss the first time. On most stages, there will be a flashing pawn that occupies the bottom row. Shoot it before hitting anything else to make a warp appear. Guards - Enemy fighters that occupy the third and fourth rows (eight on the third row, six on the fourth), and sometimes fly in formation with a Boss. They take a zig-zagging flight pattern, making them harder to hit than pawns. Bosses - Enemy fighters that occupy the top rows. Usually the last ones to attack, and they always fly in formation with one or two Guards if they are available. They attack by diving, looping in mid-flight, and then descending at a diagonal. On the second stage, and every fourth stage after that (6, 10, 14, etc.) a flashing Boss will carry a power-up that allows your ship to shoot missiles that can pierce and it multiple enemies. If you already have this power-up, then the flashing boss will not appear. As the stages progress, the enemies will fly in formation in larger clusters. They start out with four small ones for the first 24 stages, then in three medium-sized waves on stages 25-48, and finally two large clusters for stages 49-64. ******************************************************************************* * 4. SCORING * ******************************************************************************* * Enemies ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Pawns - 50 points in formation, 100 points in flight. Guards - 80 points in formation, 150 points in flight. Bosses - 150 points in formation, 400 points in flight. When in tandem with Guards, x2 if killed second, and x4 if killed last. * Asteroid Zone ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Small Asteroids - 100 points. Medium Asteroids - 500 points. Takes 3 hits. Giant Asteroids - 15,000 points. Takes 15 hits. * Bonuses ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Skill Shot multiplier - Hitting multiple enemies with a piercing missile nets you that ship's score x2 if it's the second one destroyed, x4 if it's the third, and x8 for any others after that. Asteroid Shoot Down Bonus - 100 points for each one destroyed. FANTASTIC! Bonus - 10,000 points for Asteroid Zones before Stage 20; 15,000 points for Asteroid Zones before Stage 40; and 20,000 points for all others. Must shoot down 30 or more Asteroids to obtain. Extra lives are obtained at 20,000 points and all multiples of 70,000 points. On very rare occasions, a 1-Up Tomato will be dropped after you destroy a medium-sized asteroid in the Asteroid Zone. ******************************************************************************* * 5. GENERAL TIPS * ******************************************************************************* * Warp Zones ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- If you want to get ahead quickly, then using the warp zones is your best bet. After all of the enemies fly into formation, hold your fire until you can line your ship up with the blinking Pawn in the bottom row. If you shoot anything before that one, the Pawn will stop blinking, and you'll have to wait for another stage. Once a warp is successfully hit 18 times, you'll get to skip ahead three stages. There are also "rainbow warp zones", mentioned in the March '85 Gamefan Magazine (the second one you obtain) that will warp you ahead twelve levels instead of the usual three. In order to make it appear, you have to shoot down the blinking pawn before it reaches formation on a prime-numbered stage (2, 5, 13, 17, 29, 37, 41). These are harder to get on higher levels, so it's best to shoot for the one on Stage 2 or 5 if you want to get moving quickly. There is another, super-secret type of warp zone that instantly jumps you to the last level of the game. To activate it, you need to shoot and miss 64 times until a red vortex appears. You have to wait until the "Stage 1" marker disappears before you fire your first shot, or the game may not count any of the others. Once this is done, open the wormhole to jump your way to Stage 64, where the enemies are at their fastest. This trick is not revealed until the very last challenge (Gamefan Magazine, Issue 12/31/1989), when Arino makes you play and beat all of the games in your collection. * Cheat Codes ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Instant Power-Up (once per game) - If you're having trouble collecting power-up items from the bosses, press Start to pause the game, and then enter Up, Up, A, A, B, B, and your ship will transform into its powered-up form. Be careful, as you can still lose this ability if you get hit, requiring you to wait for an even-numbered stage to get a boss to drop another one. (Revealed in Gamefan Magazine, Issue 3/85) Continue - To continue to game from the last stage where you died, press the Start button while holding Left on the D-Pad when the "Game Over" text appears. (Revealed in Gamefan Magazine, Issue 3/85) Hard Mode - To play the game in Hard mode, press Down, Down, B, B, A, A (an inversion-of-sorts of the Instant Power-Up code) at the title screen. The vortex around "Cosmic Gate" will turn green to denote that you entered the cheat correctly. In Hard mode, enemies will shoot more often, and the shots will fly faster than in Normal mode. There is no difference to the ending if you play on Normal or Hard. ******************************************************************************* * 6. CHALLENGES * ******************************************************************************* Before unlocking this game for Free Play, you'll have to complete a series of challenges for Game Master Arino. Since this is the first game in his series, the goals to meet are pretty easy. 1. Clear Stage 5! All you have to do here is clear the fifth stage. You're not allowed to use any warp zones to get there, though. This will give you a good look at how the enemies behave, and let you take your first trip through the Asteroid Zone. 2. Use two warps! Self-explanatory: Jump through two warp zones. You can do this in any stage you choose, but you have to use two of them. Just hold your fire and wait for the blinking Pawn to get in formation, and then blast away. 3. Destroy giant asteroid! In the Asteroid Zone, you'll find three different sizes of asteroid - small, medium, and large. Find a slow-moving giant asteroid, and shoot at it 15 times to complete the challenge. You'll want to line up your ship with it fairly early and start blasting away, or else you'll get crushed by it. 4. Score 200,000 points! You'll need to play the game for a little while in order to reach this score plateau. Try to get a power-up as early as the second stage, and fire your missiles through a line of targets (preferably the ones in the middle where the bosses lie, for maximum point scoring). In the Asteroid Zones, use these same missiles to help you quickly shoot down multiple asteroids (especially the medium- and large-sized ones), and aim to score as many FANTASTIC! bonuses as possible. Every third shot counts! ******************************************************************************* * 7. SPECIAL THANKS * ******************************************************************************* First, a big hearty thank-you to those of you who've sent in suggestions/questions about all of my previous guides. Without your support, I'd only be writing these for myself, and that would be no fun. Also, the following people/entities deserve honorable mention: * XSEED Games for publishing this game, * Nintendo, for developing the DS to play it on, * Namco, for giving the world Pac-Man, Galaga, and other arcade classics, and * those gamers keeping the spirit of retro gaming alive across the world. I salute you.