Swarm - The Bugs Strike Back
The setting is the Lost Desert. The good guy is a Yellow Wocky; the bad guys are a swarm of hundreds to thousands of giant bugs. Those nasty insects are invading Neopian Protection Zone 6b, an area in the Lost Desert, and it's up to the Wocky, who we'll call Bob, to blast them into oblivion with his specially-designed Wocky Tank.
Fortunately, the situation isn't too hopeless: Bob's bug-blasting tank can get some sweet power-ups, which can increase the tank's speed, shrink it to make it a smaller target, and even increase its missile size, among other things. In fact, the game would be just about the easiest ever if it weren't for the fact that the bugs can launch small-to-large fireballs. Yeah, fireballs. Hey, don't worry; Jellyneo is here to help!
To move Bob, who's always in his tank, you use the right and left arrow keys. You can't move him up or down.
To make Bob fire missiles, simply press the space bar; remember, though, that once Bob fires a missile it goes straight up until it either hits and blows up a bug or flies off the screen. Fortunately, Bob never runs out of missiles.
Run out of missiles? Me? Not a chance!
There are two kinds of bugs in Swarm II: red and green. The red ones are the main offensive force, making a square or rectangle in front of Bob's fortifications and pounding them with their small but numerous fireballs. The green ones are quite different; only one is on the screen at a time, but when it hits the edge of the screen it'll fly right off, whizzing past the top of the screen with a flurry of about five to ten bigger, faster fireballs.
This screenie shows where the different bugs operate
All in all, they're a tough force to counter when put together, because while the red bugs are finishing off Bob's forts, the green ones come flying to bombard him with their better firepower. Get it? Funny, right? Okay, whatever...the bugs will attack you in 10 separate waves, with each one seeing the number of red bugs increase.
Bob can get a bunch of different power-ups that the bugs occasionally drop, although two of them are actually bad for him. Just look at the picture below to get a hint of what you do and don't want to pick up:
Just by looking at the picture above, you probably don't really understand what everything does. The first row of icons, the ones talking about speed and size, affect Bob's tank; smaller and faster is better. Speed you probably understand, and smaller size makes you a much smaller target, meaning you are far less likely to get hit and lose one of your lives.
The second row isn't quite as obvious. The first one, "AP Slugs", may not sound too good, but they're honestly miracle workers. Why? Because they're a bunch of FIVE-FOOT-LONG, SIXTY-MILES-PER-HOUR MISSILES! With those things, you can start blasting bugs with at least twice your normal accuracy, not to mention twice as fast!
The Wall Repair repairs all damage done to the fortifications, even if they were decimated to nothingness. The Shield puts a protective barrier around Bob's tank. When hit, the shield will simply disappear, leaving not even one scratch on the tank.
The Laser icon allows Bob's tank to unleash one big beam that annihilates anything it touches. The beam gets fired in a perfectly straight line from the tank, but if a fort is blocking it then it will simply do a bit of damage to the fort. Any bugs caught in its path will be obliterated.
The scoring system in Swarm II is a bit byzantine.
For red bugs:
- If your first shot on a wave is a miss, then every red bug you kill that wave will be worth 3 points, regardless of your subsequent accuracy.
- However, if your first shot is a hit, then the first red bug you kill is worth 3 points.
- Each red bug you kill after that without missing is worth 13 points each. (This carries over across waves.)
- As soon as you miss once, a scoring sub-cycle begins:
- The next four red bugs you kill are worth 7 points each.
- The next four red bugs after those are worth one less point each: 6 points, then 5 points, then 4 points, then 3 points.
- Each red bug you kill is once again worth 13 points each...unless you miss, in which case the sub-cycle repeats.
Green bugs are scored differently. Unlike red bugs, their value is not affected by accuracy, and their value cycle resets with each wave:
- The first green bug you kill in a wave is worth 20 points.
- The second green bug you kill in a wave is worth 10 points.
- The third green bug you kill in a wave is worth 5 points.
- The fourth green bug you kill in a wave is worth 2 points.
- The fifth green bug you kill in a wave is worth 1 point.
- The sixth (and beyond) green bug you kill in a wave is worth 0 points. Yes, really.
Massive thanks to Maipom for all of their hard work researching the scoring system.
Hug the edges! If you stick close to one of the walls you improve your chances of firing accurately. If you fire at a bug as it comes across from the right and you fire slightly too late, you still have a chance of hitting it when it bounces back off the wall.
Limiting yourself to one section of the game area also makes it easier to dodge fireballs
Patience is key. Take your time! As you can see from the scoring system, what's rewarded is accuracy and consistency, but not speed. There are no prizes for finishing off all the bugs in quick succession, so take things slowly and pick them off one at a time. The highest scorers on the leader board are also the most patient.
After your first level, you will be told to press the space bar to continue. Do not do this! If you start a level by pressing space and hit the wall first, you will lose a lot of points for that level! Instead, start each level by clicking your mouse within the screen.
Ignore the green bug at the beginning of the round. Hitting the green bug requires a certain degree of skill, especially when it comes at high speed. Focus on the red bugs until you have whittled them down to the final three or four, then you can work on the green bug. Move into the bottom left corner of the screen so you have time to judge its speed and aim your shot. I would say to only go for it when it is moving reasonably slowly. Once you have hit it twice don't bother aiming for it again; at this point the extra points aren't worth the risk of missing.
This game guide was written by: Daniel, Maipom & Weepit