Strategy Guide PSX

Jaguar Rai-Den Hints and Strategies
By Ethan Larson
[email protected] (e-mail comments about this article are welcomed, and
               encouraged!)



     Rai-Den is a standard shoot-everything-that-moves vertical scrolling
game.  I will assume the reader is already familiar with the basics of such
a game, i.e. how to use diagonals to dodge, etc.  This article includes
several bullet pattern diagrams.  The periods represent bullets, and ~j
lines near them represent their paths :


         |           \           --.
         .            .             C
          A            B

A is moving down, B is moving down-right-diagonally, and C is moving right.
An asterisk indicates the player's ship, and a line will indicate what path
the player should take :
                           ____
                          /
                         /
                     |  |  \
                     .  |   .
                        |
                        *

Here, the player would go straight up, then bank to the right.  Unless
otherwise specified, the player should always use green missiles.  Enough
explaining, let's get to the tips!
     General hints :

     (1) Be a point monger.  Push your ability to the limit to get the most
points.  This is because extra fighters come at 150,000, 400,000, and every
500,000 points after that.  At the end of a level, you get 1000*bombs*medals
as a bonus.  This means you should use as few bombs as necessary.  Of course,
this should be balanced by how many bombs you need to use to survive; just
avoid wasting them.
 
     (2) Memorize the enemy positions.  A specific enemy will always come
onto the screen at the same place.  Since the playfield is wider than the
screen, you must scroll the screen left and right to find all the medals and
kill all the enemies for maximum points.  If you have the enemy positions
memorized, it will prevent you from running into them while at the edge of
the screen pushing it left or right.

     (3) Most enemies shoot straight at you.  This means that if you are
moving, and not moving toward a gun, you will probably not get shot.

     (4) Red's real power is that when you're up close with full power,
most of the spray will hit your target.  In some places, it is faster to use
red at close range than to use blue at long range.  The main difference is
that you have to know when the enemy is going to shoot so you can get out of
the way before he does.

     (5) There is a bug in the gun tracking routine.  If you are directly
in front of a gun, it will face east and miss.  This is only worth bothering
with when confronted with the larger guns, such as the level 1 BBG's (Big
Bad Guys).


Level Summaries

Level 1 :
     This level is fairly trivial, with the exception of the BBG's
and the two square tanks in the middle of the level.  You should use
blue bullets for this level.  When you get to the river, a PUCE (Power Up
Carrying Enemy) will papear.  Slightly to the right of where he appears,
there is a small stone on the shore of the river.  There is a fairy hidden
here.  You have to shoot an invisible target to get the fairy to appear, the
pick it up.  It isn't worth 10,000 points, due to a bug in the program;
however, it does count as a medal.  When you get to the two square tanks,
they will start firing at the same time.  Below is the best place to "hide".


                  OOOO  OOOO
        tanks ->  O  O  O  O
                  O  O  O  O
                  OOOO  OOOO

           /    /
         .    .
                                 \     \
                    |     |       .     .
                    .  *  .

When you get to the BBG's, remember that a few tanks come on from the sides.
 Make sure you nail these early.  Then sit back and hose on the BBG's until
they die.  Below is the place to hide.


                  OOOOOO
         BBG ->   O    O
                  O    O
                  O    O
                  O    O
                  OOOOOO
                    |
                    .

                 |  |  |
                 .* .  .
               /         \
              .     |     .
          /         .         \
    /    .                     .   \
   .                |               .
                    .

The others shots from the BBG are not a problem if you stay near the bottom
of the screen.  Also, if you are directly in front of the gun, the tracking
bug will show itself, and the gun will completely miss to the right.


Level 2 :
     Level 2 presents a few more problems.  Some of the medals are hidden in
buildings.  The only two that are hard to find are at the beginning of the
level, all the way to the left.  When you get to the bridge, there is a
small car that speed across to the left; nail it for 10,000 points.  Keep to
the left until the railroad tracks appear, then move over to nail the
trains.  You should wait a little bit to prevent nailing the engine while
the cars are still off the screen.  There is a very large tank on the left
side near some water.  Kill this before it shoots.  If you lack the fire
power, use a bomb.  When the second bridge comes, it means a barrage of
fighters is about to come.  If you don't have green here, it will be a
problem.  Try to plan ahead so you either have green or red here.  Be very
careful when scrolling the screen left or right.  As the bridge appears,
work your way to the left; after nailing the tanks go back to the right to
nail another train.  Again, going to the left first is to prevent nailing
the engine before the cars come on.
     Next is the BBG, which has three bullet patterns.  The first is
trivial; the wings shoot occasionally, and the middle part shoots a lot,
with all the bullets just going straight forward.  While still in this mode,
the BBG spits out bunches of fighters.  Green or red is imperative.  If you
don't mind getting very close to the BBG, I suggest red, since it will kill
him faster than blue.  This of course requires getting in close enough to
get most of the spray to hit him.  Blow off the wings first, since the main
part takes very little damage while the wings are still on.  Once he starts
flaming, the second and third bullet patters will start after he has moved
back to the middle of the screen.  The two hiding places are as follows.


                        OOOOOOOO
                       O        O
             .-        O        O
                       OOOOOOOOOO
              .-
                                            \
                                             .
                 /                     \
               .                        .
                    /           \
                   .             .
                            |
                       *(L) .  * (R)

Use the (L) place if the BBG is moving left, and the (R) place if he is
moving right.


                        OOOOOOOO
                       O        O
                       O        O
                       OOOOOOOOOO
     .-   .- .-   .-                  -.  -. -.  -.

           .-   .-/    /         \     \-.   -.
        .-   .-  .    .           .     .  -.   -.

             /    /   /    /  \    \   \    \
            .    .   .    .    .    .   .    .
                          |    |
                  /    /  .    . \    \
                 .    .           .    .
                          |    |
                          . *  .

You should be all the way at the back of the screen for this one.  The BBG
alternates between these two firing patterns until you kill it.  Sometimes,
if you hose him fast enough, you kill him right when the third pattern is
being shot.  This is dangerous, since the screen starts scrolling forward as
soon as the BBG dies, propelling you directly into the maze of bullets.  You
might want to stop shooting while dodging through them to prevent him from
dying at an inopportune moment.

Level 3 :
       
     This level isn't terribly difficult either, except for the BBG.  On the
way, there is one firing pattern worth noting.  After the first large boat
comes on, two planes will come down, flying away from you.  Here is the
hiding place :

                          planes
                        /        \
                   O                  O
                  OOO                OOO


           /               \  /               \
          .   /         \   ..   /         \   .
             .   |   |   .      .   |   |   .
                 . * .              .   .

There is a formation of boats with medals in them; it is rather tough to
figure out how to get all of the medals.  Here's how to get all but one :




                 OOO                         OOO
                 OOO  5                      OOO  7
                  O                           O
                               OOO
                               OOO   6
                                O



                 OOO                         OOO
                 OOO  4                      OOO  3
                  O                           O
                               OOO
                               OOO  1
                                O



                 OOO                         OOO
                 OOO  <- miss this one       OOO  2
                  O                           O

After nailing the second large boat, go to the very top of the screen.
After grabbing the first medal, go backward and right to get #2.  Then go
forward to get #3, then move left and backward.  As you pass by, you will
expose #6.  Go get #4, go forward, get #5, then go right and backward.  Snag
#6 on the way over, then near the bottom of the screen you should be able to
get #7.
     Just before the P, there are two PUCE's.  You can leave these until
you've gotten the P if you want 5,000 apiece for them.  You should use blue
for the BBG.  Kill the first two pop-up guns with the lazer; drop a bomb
right when they appear.  Aim the bomb so the explosion covers all the other
pop-up guns.  The next three sets of guns will appear into the explosion and
explode.  When they're gone, the next five guns appear, and they explode
too.  Then there's just the main gun in back.  Here's the hiding place :

                            OOOOOOO
                            O     O
                            O     O
                            O     O
                            O     O
                             OOOOO                   -.
                   /
                  .
                                                \
                                                  .

                        /
                       .                     \
                                              .
                              |
                              .        |
                                       .
                                *

Several of these volleys will be shot at a time, but they  are all the same.
 Once in a while, one of the small guns in back will fire a bullet right
through the hole.  Be ready to dodge; fortunately this doesn't happen very
often.  After he blows up, go left to get some medals, then to the right for
one more.

Level 4 :
     Swith to red as soon as possible for this level.  Watch out for the
square tanks with four guns in a line; they don't always shoot directly at
you.  Sometimes, I notice they shoot, I dodge, and the bullet went straight
to where I dodged and I die.  Just don't get too close to them.  The big
tanks on the trails in the forest are rather dangerous.  If you have full
red, use the lull before they shoot to go hit them with full barrages.  With
full red, the first can be destroyed before the second comes on.  If they do
get to shoot, just sweep from side to side to avoid their shots.  Just after
them, there are these small fighters which spin.  Be very careful when
scrooling the screen to avoid these.  If you're low on firepower, just don't
scroll the screen much.  in the forest just above the end of the left set of
tracks, there is another hidden fairy.
     The BBG isn't too bad.  Approach on the left side of the screen.  This
will probably be natural, since there is a missile powerup on the left.
Kill the square tank on the left first.  Wait for the first volley of oval
bullets from the BBG to end, then sweep across in from of him.  He'll shoot
a bunch.  If you are already to the right side of him, it's okay.  If you're
caught in the barrage, here's what to do :


                           OOOOOO
                          O      O
                          O      O
                          O      O        _
                           OOOOOO    \   |\   \
                                      .    \   .
                                            ----
                                 \        \     \_
                                  .        .    |\
                                                  |
                                                 /
                                                *

After that, nail the other square tank.  Then, if you have full enough red,
Go sit in the following spot, and hose him.  If you are low on firepower,
hide in this spot, then dart in from of him, shoot some, then run back to
the hiding place until then next opportunity to shoot him.

                          OOOOOO
                         O      O
                         O      O
                         O      O
                          OOOOOO
                                                 \
                                                  .
                                               \
                                             \  .
                                           \  .
                                        \   .
                      |             |    .
                      .   |  |  |   .
                          .  .  .      *


Level 5 :
     The only real problem on theis level is the initial 6 large tanks if
you have low firepower.  Nail them in this order :

                     6                 5
                      OO                OO
                      OO                OO
                              3
                               OO
                               OO


                     2                 4
                      OO                OO
                      OO                OO
                              1
                               OO
                               OO

First nail #1, sweep left, nail #2, sweep right to #4, but you'll get #3 on
the way.  Then get #5, and sweep left to #6.
     There is a P on this level.  if you don't have any missiles when it
appears, don't get it immediately.  Wait for the missile powerup to appear,
get it, then get the P.  For the BBG, use red.  When he first appears, drop
a bomb centered on him.  Hose the right wing first, then sweep to the left,
and nail the left wing from afar with green.  Then wait, hosing him with the
periphery of red and green.  When the two circular tanks come out, get real
close to them, and hose them with red.  If you don't have full firepower, or
would rather do it the safe way, drop another bomb.  After the two circular
tanks are gone, just keep to one side and hose him.

Level 6 :
     At the beginning of the level, scroll the screen almost all the way to
the right.  There will be two PUCE's, and they both come on the right side.
With all the asteroids around, you don't want to have to scroll the screen
later.  Once you get to the land part of the level, there will be some
really fast fighters flying around.,  the best way to avoid them is to stay
on the extreme back of the screen.  Always stay there, with two exceptions.
There will be a vertical line of four medals; when they appear, move
forward.  This is when a large pod deploying aircraft flys by, and it
approaches from behind.  Run forward, grab the medals, then come down beside
the aircraft and blow it away.  Then there will be a horizontal row of five
boxes: three medals, and two missile power-ups.  Run forward to grab these,
then another of these rear-approaching aircraft will come on.  In the middle
on the second desert, there is another hidden fairy.
     For the BBG's, use red.  There will be asteroids coming from behind, so
be very careful.  The BBG's are invincable until the stop flashing and rise
out of the ground.  After the first rises, wait 2 seconds, and drop a bomb
so it will get both BBG's.  After the bomb lands, get close to make full use
of red.  If you want a safer way to kill them, drop a bomb just on the first
one, so it rises into the explosion.  Then, drop another bomb on the second
BBG.  You should still get close with red, but this method will save you
about 4 to 5 seconds of dodging bullets and asteroids from behind.

Level 7 :
     You GOTTA have green for this level.  Without it, this is the toughest
level in the game.  There are these things that crawl along the pipes, and
they shoot a lot.  They will also crawl out from behind, so they are
generally all around you.
     At the start of the level, are four large ships.  If you have enough
green, sit off to the side and let the missiles get them.  If you have a lot
of red, just sweep left and right in front of them, between their volleys.
Or the safe method is to use a bomb.
     Use red for the BBG.  He flys around in circles, so it's easy to lose
your bearing.  When dodging through his volleys, remember to look at the
stars in the background to get a handle on where the bullets are flying.
Also, when dropping bombs on him, make sure you place them so the "face"
part will be in the explosion, accounting for the fact that he is moving in
circles.  With large enough red, the small guns on his "shoulders" will die
almost as soon as they open up.  Also, those crawly things come out on the
two pipes on the bottom side of him.  Be careful of these, since they will
usually be behind or beside you.  Here is wher to dodge the main volley from
the face :
                          face
                              \ OOOO
                                O  O
                                 OO
                       /                    \
                      .                      .

                           /            \
                          .              .
                       2       |     |
                        *--->  .     .
                                  |
                                  .
                               |     |
                               .     .
                           <---*
                           /    1       \
                          .              .

The bullets will close in on you from the outside, move left at point 1.
then they will come twoard you again, move right at point 2.  What makes
this difficult is the aforementioned problem with keeping your bearings.
With the BBG moving in circles, the bullets seem to be moving in weird
directions.  Again, watch the stars to keep things straight.  If you dont't
feel comfortable dodging this volley, use bombs.

Level 8 :
     This is a straight forward level, except for the BBG.  Scroll left and
right to kill maximum stuff.  Make sure you get red and green for the BBG.
He is put together from pieces.  While they are assembling him, he is
relatively harmless.  Just hose on the pieces until they are finished
putting him together.  If you have green, just move to the left, so his main
gun is off the screen.  The part you need to hit can still be visible.  This
way he can't shoot, but the green missles will damage him.  There is a
triple gun near the top that will shoot at you, but it is of little
consequence.  Kill it while hosing on the main part with green.  After the
left part is gone, and the main part is as far to the top as it goes, sweep
right, and take out the right triple gun, and the right part of the main
body like you took out the left part.  Then the last part will still be
visible, when that is gone, it's over!  However, since you might not have
full green, I will show how to dodge the volleys anyway.  There are several,
depending on how much damage he has taken.  Before blowing away the two
small parts under the main gun turrent, there are two bullet patterns.  On
shoots pairs of bullets in the eight directions; hide where you did on the
level 4 BBG.  The other is a widening V shape, with the point on his turret.
 Sit still, and let them go on either side of you.  Since he aims directly
at you, both streams will miss.  You can also just keep moving in one
direction so they all miss completely, whichever you feel more comfortable
with.  After the two small parts are gone, he will shoot a long stream of
bullets directly at you.  Move all the way to the left or right, then move
up until there is a hole in the bullets for you to go back down through.  In
between the volleys is when you should sit in front of him and hose on him.

After level 8, you get 1,000,000 points, and go back to level 1 again, this
time with the enemy bullets being faster.  Use similar techniques, but be
more liberal with bombs.  I was able to get 3,400,000 on one credit with
these techniques.  I was on Level 2-7 (level 7 the second time) when the
crawly things nailed me.  The only BBG's where bombs seem absolutely
necessary are on Level 6, and possibly 8.  I just discovered that you could
sit in a place where you could shoot him and he couldn't shoot you.  With
this idea, it may be possible to hose even the level 8 BBG without bombs.
Remember : the key to big points, and extra dudes is saving bombs.  Have fun
saving Earth!