Pro tip: Experience Sharing in The Legend of Zelda 2: The Adventure of Link

The second Legend of Zelda game is the only one with this weird experience point system. Get enough points and you can level up your Attack, Life Points, or Magic Points. And, after a while, it takes a lot of points to get to the next level. Thousands of 'em, in fact.

But, if you go to the end of one of the Castles and set a jewel in the statue at the end, your experience is ratcheted up to the next level, no matter how much you have to go.

So, as soon as the experience starts counting up, pause the game

Do a Quick Save by hitting Up + A on Controller 2

And start a new game (or continue an old one)

You'll notice that your new Link will start to get the rest of the experience points that the old Link was going to get before you paused and exited the game!

Which is great for a few levels early on in the game.

Though this does have rather limited use. You have to actually get pretty far into the game for the amount of experience points that transfer to amount to more than a level or two for the new guy, which kind of implies that you're going to be pretty far in the game (or have finished it at least once). But if you're sharing the game with a less-skilled player, it's a good way to give him a bump up in strength to make the early going slightly easier.

Pro tip: seeing the end of Metal Gear any time you want

The original Metal Gear game holds a special place in a lot of people's hearts. But sometimes you just don't have the time to play through the whole thing. Or, worse, you've lost your password that started you at the end of the game.

So what do you do?

Well, you could go to the password screen and put in "TOOOU" over and over again until you run out of room.

Which will start you just past the final boss battle!

All you have to do is survive a room full of guys and pick the correct door to leave (you have three choices)

Choose correctly and you too can pretend like you've actually finished Metal Gear!

Pro tip: moving the camera around in Dusty Diamond's All-Star Softball

Dusty Diamond's All-Star Softball is an... interesting softball game for a lot of reasons, like the unique characters that are featured. Like Zelda the witch

But let's suppose for a minute that you went to the title screen

And while there you took Controller 2 and held Up while pressing A six times, then held Down while pressing B four times. Then used the Start button on controller 1 to start the game as normal. Then what would you have?

Well, nothing obvious. But when you get to the part of the game where the camera's zoomed out to show the field (i.e. after a ball's been hit), you can hold down the Start button and use the Control Pad to look at any part of the field you want.

Which is actually kind of useless since the default is for the camera to follow the ball so you can make plays. I really only found it useful as something to do after I hit a home run and was waiting for the guys to round the bases.

Pro tip: Gravity doesn't work like you'd expect in Chip 'n Dale's Rescue Rangers

When you're playing through Chip 'N Dale's Rescue Rangers, you'll occasionally come across these grey crates that you have to stack up to make any progress.

But, if you grab one of the crates off the bottom of the stack, you're going to be in for a surprise, the ones on top don't fall down!

Which will allow you to do some interesting thing with their formations.

Pro tip: getting all invincible in Seicross

Seicross is one of those games that tests your ability to play by being endless and going until you can't go any more.

But that doesn't mean that your game ever has to end.

If you go to the title screen

And on Controller 2 hold Left + A + B

while simultaneously pressing Up, Up, Down, Down, Start on Controller 1 (this part may require more hands than you have, you might consider asking for help)

When you start the game, your bike will be uncrashable!

Which means you could just go to bed and wake up the next morning to a high score and some ridiculous amount of progress

But there's no way I know of to actually end the game, short of pressing the Power or Reset buttons.

Pro tip: asking for help sometimes works Part 2: Nightshade Edition

Once you finally make it to the end of Nightshade, you have to deal with the evil mastermind who's responsible for starting the mess, Waldo P. Schmeer, a.k.a. Sutekh. He really likes to hear himself talk.

You can use this to your advantage. Before you engage him, TALK to him

to ask him the question you're probably asking yourself in real life.

Which he'll actually answer

Though, to be honest, I found the Staff of Ra to be all but useless when I was fighting him. A better technique was to duck in the center of the room and punch him when he teleports in close.

Pro tip: Selecting your starting level in Adventure Island 3

I never was really very good that the Adventure Island games, but I had some tools to help me see some of the later parts of the games anyway.

Like in the third one. I'd go to the title screen

Then press Down, Up, Left, Right, B, A, B, A on Controller 1, which would take me to the Stage Select screen

And, as an added bonus, I'd get some powerups to help.

Which is good, because those later levels are pretty tough.

Pro tip: continuing in Rampage without using up a continue

The NES version of Rampage is a little more limiting than the arcade version. You still have a ton of cities to level, but you only have two continues (e.g. three lives) to go through them all, where in the arcade you could just keep feeding the machine quarters until you made as much progress as you wanted.

So what do you do?

Any time you run out of life, your character will shrink back down to human form and slowly work their way off screen.

Before they get there, if you hit the B button on your controller, they get their life bar back, and regain their former stature.

And you can do this as often as you need to, as long as your character didn't shuffle off the screen it still counts as the same life. So you can make it through all 128 days pretty easily.

But it will still take a while to do that.

Pro tip: warping around in Crystalis

I admit, I've never actually made it all the way through Crystalis, it just kind of fell off my radar when the NES was the Big Thing(tm). But that doesn't mean I didn't get to see some of the sights the game has to offer.

When I finally did get my hands on it, I held down the A + B buttons on controller 1, and then started tapping A on controller 2 because every time I did, the screen would fade

and I would warp to another section of the game.

The only problem was that I typically wasn't prepared for the part of the game I happened into, so more often than not, I'd end up seeing this soon after

But it was an interesting way to get a preview of what lied ahead.

Pro tip: Seeing the end of Palamedes any time you want

I like puzzle games, but there are a few that I'm just no good at, like Palamedes. My brain just doesn't work in a way that this game wants it to.

But that's OK. If I want to see the ending of it (yeah, it has an ending), all I need to do is to go to the title screen and hold Right + A on Controller 2 and press Start on Controller 1. Doing that brings up a menu

Where I get to pick which ending that I want to see (one for each game mode)

And I didn't even have to strain my brain to do it. Double Win(tm)!

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