Sonic 2 - Sonic waiting for the fox jumping into the spikes to drown
My favorite screenshot of all at the moment (as of Mar 27, 2007)


What screenshots and videos do you have of your games?


Last updated: Feb 23, 2007 (first version)
Level 1 update on Mar 27, 2007 - Final Fantasy 6 added plus other minor additions
New screenshots last added on Mar 27, 2007

1 Introduction



1.1 Brief history



Category 4 on the main index covers my history with video games in great depth. To sum things up, I've been involved with video games since I was 4. I found even challenging games to be a bit easy and until 2003, I very extensively played my games. I first play the game normally, like most players would. When I finish the game, I come up with my own challenges, hunt for bugs that testers missed, or just perform weird stunts. Since 2003, I lost interest because too many games were rated T and M, much of the good stuff was taken out (debug mode, sound test, the challenge), and more annoyances have been added (missing land, scores and lives more easily maxing out (Can't game designers ever use the full range of a variable?), etc.). For many years, I've always had the dream of becoming a beta tester for games, even making my own games. The case of making my own games has already happened (The Supernatural Olympics is one, see category 9 on the main index for details), but the case of becoming a beta tester has fallen short, far short. The primary reason is that I don't know how to get into it.

1.2 What this is



Ever since I got "GameBridge", I figured I'd just post a few highlights on my site. Whether it's Tails heading for the (blue) water (and spikes) in Sonic, or getting tossed up so high that the details on the ground (and scenery) are unable to be distinguished as to what they are (as with Super Monkey Ball 2), I tend to find all sorts of weird flaws and things or do weird stunts. I took screenshots to show odd or unusual things. I record videos of the stunts and take still frames from the videos (using screenshots and cropping them) saving them as BMPs. I very rarely will post any videos due to their immense file sizes and bandwidth concerns. Only extreme cases or cases where screenshots just won't do, are the only times videos will be used and what videos I have use the XviD codec (quality 10; download the codec here) and compressed in Virtual Dub with the same processing method used for these screenshots. When I get more than one video, a separate category would be created to sort out the details.

The only modifications done to the screenshots is merely cropping them, and, in rare cases, brightening them. The third is whatever artifacts saving as JPG has* (I use the highest quality with the smallest file size and best looks (quality 80 seems to be the best balance) - tests, they're so handy for these things!). The originals have a black border around them and are always 480x320. The cropped versions only remove the black borders. This same thing applies with the videos (since it saves on disk space). The other modification, though rare, is brightening the image, done by multiplying each pixels' color values by the same number on each. To help understand, compare the original (top - as a PNG image) with the modified version (bottom (as you'd see the screenshots here)).





As you can tell, the two are practically identical. The top one is the original. Note the black borders around it and that it's much darker than it should be. I multiplied the pixel color values by 1.6 to brighten the image. This keeps black as black and orange as orange. Multiplying is much more precise and accurate than adding, as some brightening filters do. Adding turns black into gray. Multiplying keeps all hues and saturation the same, unless it exceeds 255 where it caps.

1.3 The layout





Within each page, there are ten screenshots. Within each screenshot are a variation of details. At the top of each is the screenshot itself. By placing the mouse arrow over it, the title shows up. Below the screenshot are textual descriptions with the screenshot number and the title following right after. On the next row below the title, is the caption, where I give a few remarks about it, and/or a general description. Sometimes, especially with those with Sonic, they're quite funny.

There are 10 screenshots per page, usually around 420x300 pixels in size, and as JPGs. Videos, however, use the XviD codec with the lowest bit rate and sound quality that has reasonable overall quality (quality 10 in XviD's configuration; tests - they're so handy). The videos are direct download as ZIP files rather than streaming (since I don't know how to use video streaming).

2 The games and links



2.1 The games



Here's a brief overview on what I do in the various games, sorted alphabetically. My top favorite screenshot for the group is at the top of the details. Right away, when you look at even my favorite screenshots, you can get a good idea on the weird things I do. I have an extreme attraction to high places, or at least getting as high as I possibly can.




Bubsy 3D - the highest point you can stand on


Bubsy 3D: Bubsy 3D has the worst graphics of all known games during it's era, so poor that it makes the NES proud since it has better graphics. That, however, doesn't deter me from playing the game, not even the somewhat bad camera. Instead, what keeps me at it is finding the numerous bugs the game has along with accomplishing my own self-made challenges. I primarily play in level 2, where I've spent 3/5 of my 700 or so hours (life time play time) on level 2, 1/3 at level 1, and the rest on the other levels that I hardly play since I can't have the fun I do with the second level.




Final Fantasy 2 - mega weakling took a big hit with mega powerhouses helping


Final Fantasy 2: FF2 is my top favorite Final Fantasy game with FF7 being a close second. The start of it is a bit difficult, but as soon as I get Mindu, I can go anywhere and get end-of-game statistics without even going through Semitt Falls. It's a bit challenging, but, even six 8-hour days at it to max out the HP and quite a few other stats is worth it. That way, I go through 2/3 of the game with end-of-game type stats, as screenshots 7 through 9 show. The weaklings I get along the way strongly mimic events I do in my mind game, almost perfectly even (as with the case in June of 2002, when I was practically brand new to the RPG genre (with FF7)).




Final Fantasy 6 - mega damage on the octopus boss


Final Fantasy 6: I actually first saw this game 11 or so years ago (around 1996 to the best of my knowledge). I was at a friend's house and two of my old friends were playing this game. They struggled with boss fights a lot getting numerous game overs. I asked them if I could try but they never let me. One of the scenes involved a log raft on a river with an octopus as a boss and if the character, Banon, fell (HP drops to 0), it was game over. They got this several times (about 8 or so). Another scene involved a house on fire with fire sprites (and running into them caused a battle with enemies). Also recall the boss and that my friends had a lot of trouble with it (and having bubbles over the boss). It was until 11 years later that I finally got to be able to play the game and I was surprised at just how easy it really was. When I got to the parts my friends in 1996 (or so) had trouble with, I had no trouble at all. In fact, I almost never had to cure anyone, including Banon during that river scene (shown in the screenshot above). As to the fire scene - I deliberately ran into the fire sprites because battles are my top favorite things in the game and I went through the entire burning house scene without having to cure anyone. My blog for March 2007 explains how things went for me at the game, a complete opposite to what my friends had that I recalled.




Jumping Flash 1 - the highest possible in world 1-1


Jumping Flash 1 JF isn't a strong favorite, but it's getting up ultra high that makes the game of great interest to me, as from my favorite screenshot above. I can max out the height on 4 levels and get very close with two others. The game is way too easy so I needed a challenge, a much bigger one, and my usual attraction to the highest possible place you can get made getting as high as possible an obvious one.




Looney Tunes Back in Action - a bug in one of the later levels


Looney Tunes Back in Action: This, as of Feb 23, 2007, is the newest Gamecube game I have. Being so hard to find games of interest rated E or E10+, and that I like Looney Tunes games, LTBIA was one I had interest in. As of today, I have yet to see what happens when you exceed $999,999. I know of at least 3 bugs in this game, and the screenshot above shows one such bug being utilized (likely faulty collision). Yes, that's Bugs Bunny underwater....




Sonic 2 - Sonic is bored waiting for Tails, who is under spikes, to drown


Sonic 2: With Tails in the game, Sonic 2 is certainly much better than Sonic 1, but is far less liked than that of Sonic 3 & Knuckles. According to old screenshots, I've been with Sonic since 2002. The game was too easy, but once I found out about the debug cheats, I immediately got hooked at playing the game. Along with that, having fun with Tails (the fox that I often say "lives in blue water") is, by far, the most entertaining aspect in the game, of which the newer 3D Sonic games don't have and thus I don't find anywhere near as attractive. With debug, I add spikes for the fox to deal with and sometimes, as with the screenshot above, help it drown. With Tails always reviving, I can keep at it, in the same area, for hours and still find it enjoyable. Even without cheating, the 2D Sonic games are almost unchallenging. Just looking at my screenshots and videos of Tails' stupidity keeps me laughing and at the game.




Sonic 3 and Knuckles - Tails on debug-added spikes about to drown


Sonic 3 & Knuckles: S3K is, by far, the best of all the Sonic games I've played, 5 times better than even the next best and has roughly 1500 total play time hours on it. Combining debug, having fun with Tails, lots of water levels (all fresh, waiting for foxes), 50% faster top falling speed (24 pixels per frame instead of 16 - the point where the character runs or falls off the screen toward that direction), and being much easier to get Tails to do things (and more entertaining as a result), it's almost a certainty I'll get 3000 hours total play time. Just looking at my screenshots and videos of Tails' stupidity keeps me laughing and at the game.




Super Monkey Ball 2 - The view after getting tossed up at 2400 mph


Super Monkey Ball 2: SMB2 has been played more than all other Gamecube games combined, and more than twice as much as the next most played. My main attraction here is using practice mode and a select set of levels where I can get tossed up extremely high (bead screen being my first, as shown in the screenshot above). For those who have played the game, you may be familiar and used to 130 mph at the extreme fast end. You may have seen 550 mph or so from rolling off "gravity slider" right away and just falling straight down, but even that is slow compared to what I'm used to and regularly get. I'm used of speeds as high as 2000 mph (Can you imagine making the goal with that kind of speed!?) and I've been to even 4000 mph without any cheats (other than stopping the clock so I can get the full experience of it and even attempt to make the goal like that). Yet, even with such extreme height and speed (which makes the stage seem like it was very small), it's a wonder if I can even land on the stage again or even make the goal like that (I have a video of this to show you what it's like to really go 2400 mph straight up and watch the ground from 95% of the way to the edge of visibility. Do you suppose I can make the goal?). I've also mastered practically every one of the party games, except tennis of which I have yet to figure out any weaknesses (even my pausing trick isn't good enough when against the computer), and boat (due to the rather awkward turning system). 4 perfects in bowling, 25,000 points in target, 38 points in one inning with baseball, yeah, you get the idea. SMB2 also happens to be my most studied game from the 201st decade (2001 to 2010) as I know pretty much everything about it in such great depth. It's also the game with the fastest movement I've ever seen. Even racing games are slow in comparison as, with the 2400 mph in the video, you'd zip across the entire course in seconds lapping everyone 10 times over.

2.2 Links



There are 10 screenshots per page. The links refer to the screenshot numbers for that game. You may want to play the games first before viewing my screenshots. I do try to keep spoilers to a minimum (especially story-related elements), but for some things, especially my comments/remarks about the screenshot, some things may be given away.

Newest additions:
Mar 27, 2007 - Final Fantasy 6 added - first 29 screenshots

Screenshots (Go to root page):
Bubsy 3D: 1-latest

Final Fantasy 2 (spoiler warning!): 1-10 | 11-latest

Final Fantasy 6 (spoiler warning!): 1-10 | 11-20 | 21-latest

Jumping Flash 1: 1-10 | 11-latest

Looney Tunes Back in Action: 1-latest

Sonic 2: 1-latest

Sonic 3 & Knuckles: 1-10 | 11-20 | 21-30 | 31-latest

Super Monkey Ball 2: 1-latest



My videos at YouTube - below are videos considered special to me that use the XviD codec. SMB2 - Super High in Bead Screen - (cheat used: stopping the clock) Ever wonder what things are like when going 2400 mph straight up and the views you get from the extreme height (10 miles high)? Sure that kind of speed would get you to your friend's house 10 miles away in the matter of a few seconds, but the wrong scaling in the game tells otherwise. This video takes you almost to the edge of the clipping as it's that high. Once I do get tossed up, do you think I can land on the stage again and actually make the goal (considering it's practically invisible due to the extreme height and that it comes up so fast (and a bug that causes random small speed changes))? The only cheat used was to stop the clock, otherwise I'd have ran out of time when just passing 1000 mph on the way back down. This way, you can get the full experience of the sheer speed. Video specs: 2 minutes, 27 1/3 seconds long, 29.97 fps, 6.62 MB (ZIP file - video itself is 6.94 MB), 428x300 resolution, AVI video format, XviD codec.

Footnotes:
* You may be thinking that I should save the NES and Genesis type games as GIF or PNG. This is not possible as JPG has a much smaller file size at even quality 90. The reason is the noise. There's no easy way to fix the noise. Not only that, but if you looked closely at the original screenshot of Felix the Cat at the top, you can see smoothing effects. GIF and PNG wouldn't do well with this. Combining the noise and smoothing effects, only JPG seems reasonable.