Pro tip: Dealing with tips in Tapper

Occasionally, while you're slinging Root Beers around in Tapper, you'll notice that occasionally a patron will drop a tip on the counter.

If you grab it, you get a 1500 point bonus, and some 'entertainment' plays

But I typically avoid picking them up for 3 reasons:

  1. Grabbing it takes you away from slinging root beers, which means that your patrons get closer to the end of their bars and tougher to get out
  2. Some of the patrons quit paying attention to the drinks being slung at them, and when they start to overlap with each other, it can be tough to tell who wants a drink and who's watching the show (check out the bottom bar in the second picture, for example)
  3. While patrons are watching the show, more patrons file in, filling the bar, and making it tougher to clear the level

This doesn't mean that you should necessarily avoid grabbing all of them, but I'd avoid them until you're ready to increase the game's difficulty.

Pro tip: stocking up on lives in Mega Man 4

In Mega Man 4, one of the weapons you get is the Pharaoh Shot, which, if you hold down the B button, produces a big ol' bubble of energy above Mega Man's head.

One of the interesting things about it is that if a particularly weak enemy collides with it the enemy is destroyed but the bubble stays up and you don't lose any weapon energy.

So, if you find a place where weak enemies come down at you from the same angle in a steady stream, like this spot in Skull Man's stage

You can stand there, B button held in, and and when the enemies plow into your charged shot, the goodies fall right onto your head. Stand there long enough and you'll not only refill your energy pretty quickly, but you'll also max out your lives.

Which might be better than having full energy.

Oh, and if you think that this is similar to the technique I described for Mega Man 9, you'd be right.

Pro tip: manipulating when the letters for E-X-T-E-N-D appear in Bubble Bobble

If you play Bubble Bobble enough, you might begin to suspect that the collectible items that appear are essentially random.

But you'd be wrong.

Some of the more useful items are the bubbles that hold the letters that spell the word EXTEND. To get them, all you have to do is encase a lot of enemies in bubbles and maneuver them so that they all pop at the same time.

If you popped enough, when the next stage starts you'll notice that the lettered bubbles start pouring in!

In fact, you get two less than the number of enemies that you popped at once (pop 3 enemies, get 1 bubble; pop 5, get 3 bubbles; etc.)

And this works on every version of Bubble Bobble that I tried it on.

Pro tip: Getting a fast lap time in Super Mario Kart's Vanilla Lake 2

In Super Mario Kart's Vanilla Lake 2, the center of the field has become melted, and kind of dangerous to drive on, y'know, because it's a lake.

But you can use that to your advantage.

While you're racing, as soon as you cross the finish line, take a hard left and head straight into the water.

Then, at the last second, turn 90° to your left so that you go back behind the Start/Finish line before Lakitu picks you up. Done right, you should be on the next lap.

Which will whittle down your best lap times to well under 10 seconds!

Not bad!

Pro tip: Dan's "Super" move in Marvel Super Heroes vs. Street Fighter

Whenever Dan appears in a Street Fighter game, you can bet that he's going to be way underpowered and tough to use, which makes him quite the challenge to get good with.

Take his "ultimate" maneuver, for example. So if you're playing as him and you get the Hyper Combo gauge up to maximum (L. 3) and you press:

Hard Punch, Light Kick, Back, Light Punch, Light Punch

He moves in for the kill!

Except that when he's done, his opponent loses very little energy, and Dan loses almost all of his!

So why would you ever want to do it?

My best guess is that you'd use it to show off as you're beating someone senseless with Dan. But, since he's kind of hard to master, I've never actually been able to prove that.

Pro tip: clearing a hypercube with a hupercube in Bejeweled Blitz

In Bejeweled Blitz, if you manage to get five gems in a row, you get what's called a Hypercube, which is kind of like a Wild Card. You match it with a gem of any color and it clears all gems of that color from the board.

But what if you're skilled (or lucky) enough to get two of them next to each other?

It turns out that if you clear a Hypercube with a Hypercube that it clears every gem on the board!

And at 250 points a pop, that's an easy 16,000 points!

Pro tip: shell dodging Super Mario Bros. 3

In Super Mario Bros. 3, you come across tons of shelled enemies, which you can pick up and carry around. Throw them at question blocks, and they reveal their contents for you.

But, if you take your favorite shell up to a block, and get real close to it (without touching it)

And then let go of your shell, it'll hit the block, and then bounce back toward you

but it'll sail right through you without causing any damage!

And you might be saying "So what? I could just throw the shell at the block from further away and achieve basically the same thing." And you'd be right, you could do that. But this way, you don't have to dodge anything when it ricochets off your target.

Pro tip: getting the 3UP every time in Super Mario Land 2

At the end of some of the stages in Super Mario Land 2, you get to play a kind of skill crane game where the claw moves left and right over a conveyor belt and you have to time when it tries to grab a thing.

But, if you wait for it to go right and then all the way back to the left once, and press the A button

You'll grab the 3UP every time!

Which is definitely the most useful of the items in there.

Pro tip: retaining your Options in Life Force

In the Gradius series of games (which Life Force is one of), you get these things called Options, which are kind of like little invincible drone ships that follow you everywhere.

But, lose concentration for a moment, and your ship explodes, costing you all your powerups. But you might notice that your Options just kind of slowly drift off to the rear edge of the screen.

Which means all you have to do is to swoop in and grab them, and you can immediately double or triple your firepower again!

Which will come in handy during some of those boss fights.

Pro tip: free elixirs in Final Fantasy 3/6

In Final Fantasy 6 (released on the Super NES as Final Fantasy 3), elixirs are handy because they fully restore a character's HP and MP.

But, they're kind of hard to come by, especially at the beginning of the game, when resources are limited.

So let's turn our attention to the clocks that litter the game. If you find one, walk up to it

and "check" it with the A button.

The result? One free elixir!

Now, this doesn't work on every clock in the game, but it does work on most of them. So make sure you check them all out when you see them.

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