Pro tip: Don't return your feet to the starting position in Dance Dance Revolution

If you watch the Attract Mode of most Dance Dance Revolution machines, they will eventually go into a tutorial on how to play the game, and in it, the demo character will stomp on an arrow, and then return its feet to the center. Check it out (it starts at about 0:58 in this clip):

And I see a lot of beginners playing the game like this... and stumbling around. Why? Because the arrows in the songs are set up so that you don't return your feet to center after hitting each one, which has the side effect of reducing the number of steps you have to take to hit all the arrows. Check out the kid's feet in this video:

If he returned his feet to the center after every time he hit an arrow, he wouldn't be quick enough to hit all the arrows, and neither would you.

So don't do it!

Pro tip: viewing a Christmas scene in The Simpsons: Hit & Run

Today is Christmas, so I decided to fire up my GameCube and throw in a copy of The Simpsons: Hit & Run, and I was greeted with this:

The halls are decked, and Homer is passed out on the couch in a Santa outfit. Sounds like something to aspire to on a day like today.

Also, I understand that this works on the PS2 and Xbox versions as well, as long as the clock is set to the correct date.

Pro tip: Crazy Taxi driving techniques

Crazy Taxi is kind of a tough game. Mostly because if you play the arcade game, you have no indication of how to perform the advanced techniques that you need to know to be successful at the game.

But that's what I'm here for.

You need to know 4 techniques to be a successful cabbie.

1. The Crazy Dash - The idea is to shift into Drive and then immediately stomp on the gas. The timing is a little tough to get without a demonstration, but pulled off successfully, you'll immediately rocket to top speed. You can do this at any time, even while you're driving. Also, if you're at a stop, and you do the Crazy Dash, but immediately put the car into Reverse, you'll go full-speed backwards.

2. The Limiter Cut - Once you get going at top speed with the Crazy Dash, you'll notice that your car will start to vibrate. When that happens you want to throw the car into Reverse, then Drive, and then hit the Gas, with the same timing as the Crazy Dash. This will give you a burst of speed that lets you go faster than your top speed for a couple of seconds.

3. The Crazy Drift - While you're driving, put the car into Reverse and then into Drive while turning a direction. You'll easily slide around corners. Let go of everything and do a Crazy Dash to recover.

4. The Crazy Stop - Do the Crazy Dash, but hit Reverse and the Brake instead of Drive and the Gas. You'll manage to stop much faster.

Here's a video I prepared of me performing all 4 of these techniques on the Dreamcast version Crazy Box challenge rank S-S. I'm a little out of practice at the game, but I think you'll get the idea.

Pro tip: reading the synopsis in the Tales of... games

The Tales Of... games are pretty good RPGs, but like a lot of RPGs, the plots sometimes get a little bit tough to follow. But you have a (not very) secret weapon.

Check out my status screen from Tales of Symphonia for the Game Cube:

The bottom-right option is 'synopsis', which shows a list of topics

which tell you a brief recap of what's happened so far, and what you should do next.

Which is pretty awesome if you have a tough time following the story for some reason, plus it gives you insights into how the story's playing out that you may have missed otherwise. Which, when the story gets as complicated as it does in this game, that's not a bad thing.

Pro tip: Mega Man X's hadoken

In Mega Man X, in the Armored Armadillo stage, if you leap up over the door to the boss's room, you find this little slice of heaven.

Pretty worthless, right?

But, if you collect every item in the game, including all weapons, sub-tanks, heart tanks, and body upgrades

Then visit this area several times (the easiest way to do this is to get up here, then leap off to the left into the pit so you start at the halfway point, stock up on lives using this tip)

After visiting this ledge about four or five times a weapon upgrade capsule will appear, and the good doctor will be wearing Ryu's (from Street Fighter) clothes.

Jump in, and you get the ability to throw Ryu's (and Ken's) signature fireball by pressing Down, Down-Forward, Forward, and then the shot button, but only if you have full health.

This thing is able to kill pretty much anything in the whole game in one hit, but you have to be on the ground to use it.

Have fun!

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