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FAQ by J4913

Version: 0.91 | Updated: 10/06/07


    Meteos - gameplay guide

    Version 0.91

    By J

NOTE: This guide has been written for the European version of this game.  There
are differences between versions (see note on planet names in Introduction,
section 2).

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.0. Contents
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

To search for a particular section, append references together with dots
in-between and at start and end, e.g. '.3.1.5.'.

An asterisk (*) indicates an incomplete section.

0.  Contents

1.  Legal and contact

2.  Introduction

3.  Current content

4.  Gameplay guide
  1.  Playing Meteos
    1.  Basics
    2.  Stacks
  2.  Planets
  3.  Strategies
    1.   Playing for points
      1.   Deluge*
      2.   Time War I
    2.  Playing for Meteos
      1.   Time War II
      2.   Simple
      3.   Fusion
    3.  Playing for Star Trip endings
      1.   Straight
      2.   Branch
      3.   Multi

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.1. Legal and contact
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This guide is distributed under a Creative Commons license
(Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0):

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/

If you come across any significant section of this guide and its use does not
comply with the above terms, please e-mail me.

To contact me to either suggest information or ideas or point out corrections,
use e-mail.  The e-mail address to use is J49137@gmail.com.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.2. Introduction
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I have chosen to call this a 'gameplay guide': it concerns, chiefly, how to
play the game well and attain high scores.  I set the standard quite high here,
explaining what I think are the best possible strategies.  Take the time to
familiarise yourself with how the game works first, using section 4.1, before
expecting to be able to use these consistently when you play.

Note about planet names:
I own the European version of the game, in which many planet names vary from
other versions'.  In the guide, wherever I mention a planet, I include its
alternative name (if different) in parentheses that follow.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.3. Current content
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

At the moment, this guide contains:
- How to play Meteos.
- Data and general strategies for each planet.
- Some strategies for Deluge Mode.
- Complete sections for Fusion, Time War, Simple and Star Trip.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4. Gameplay guide
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The guide starts here.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.1. Playing Meteos
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This section covers the basics: what Meteos are, why they are bad, and how to
get rid of them.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.1.1. Basics
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Meteos are the coloured blocks that constantly fall from above, and a planet
nova occurs when a column piles over the top of the Touch Screen.  A nova is
bad: it equates to losing a life, and you usually have only one.  To save your
planet from annihilation, launch Meteos upwards and off the screen.  Although
play varies immensely from planet to planet and across the numerous game modes,
a few things are always the same.  When a column builds up to the top of the
Touch Screen, you will hear a beep and the column will flash, to attract your
attention the fact that the planet is close to a nova.  Bear in mind, however,
that while one column is flashing, others that pile too high flash only, not
beeping, so check all columns after a close call.

Meteos can only be dragged up and down their columns, best done using the
Stylus.  Move them one at a time to align 3 or more of the same type, either
horizontally or vertically, which initiates an ignition.

Depending on the planet, of which there are 32, the orientation of the
alignment (horizontal or vertical), the number of Meteos in the columns
directly above, and the number of aligned Meteos, different things can happen;
usually, the Meteos and any in their columns above them fire upwards, slowly or
quickly, often falling back down.  The ignited Meteos (the ones you aligned)
turn grey, referred to in-game as 'incinerated', and can no longer be lined up
for use in ignitions.  Incinerated Meteos turn back - that is, to a random type
of Meteos - after having spent a period of time of the ground.  Each planet has
a set variation of Meteos occurences, and only a few types.

 - In planets with lower gravity, ignitions are more likely to leave the
   screen.
 - The higher the ratio of ignited Meteos to the total number of Meteos
   launched, the more likely ignitions are to leave the screen.
 - Whether horizontal or vertical ignitions have greater power is very varied
   among the planets.

In modes where you attack another planet - Star Trip, Simple and Multiplayer -
any Meteos that you send off the screen that are not incinerated land on your
opponent's/opponents' screen together at once as incinerated Meteos.  The
Meteos are saved up and shown in the box above the Speeder, and launch if no
more are launched for a second, or if you tap the box.  If Meteos land on your
screen already incinerated, they are from another planet in the match: for
those Meteos, the probability for which type of Meteos they will change into if
left is dependent on the data for the planet on which they were last
non-incinerated.  That means you are likely to have incinerated Meteos from
Igneous (Firim) return to fire Meteos, even if your planet has a very low
likelihood or even an absence of them.  Also, Meteos from other planets take
much less time to turn back to normal Meteos initially (the first time they
land on your planet).

The only other way to shoot Meteos upwards apart from by using items is by
flicking the top Meteos in a column upwards with the Stylus: if this hits
another of the same type in midair, they will both disappear with a tiny poof.

Fall speed of Meteos in the air increases as a game progresses - so the going
gets tougher, with more Meteos landing all the time.  Additionally, they can
be sped up by the player, most comfortably done by holding L or R (one
exception: stacks on Gigantis (Yooj)).  The speed while holding L or R
increases as the normal rate does.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.1.2. Stacks
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

When an ignition occurs, a stack forms; the Meteos in the stack (those above
the incinerated Meteos in their columns) stick together, even (usually) when
a secondary ignition is made halfway up the stack.  The stack will be no more,
returning to its individual Meteos, when left on the ground for a while.  This
period is equal to that after which incinerated Meteos turn into ordinary ones,
and is dependent on planet.  It also decreases as the game progress.

Stacks can be added to: Meteos or other stacks of Meteos that touch the stack
from below (midair only) or above (anywhere) become a single stack, even if
they are joined by just a single Meteos.  They can also be added to by
ignitions that link two stacks, or a stack and the Meteos that would form a
new stack anyway because of the ignition.

Performing a second ignition within a stack will cause 'x02' to appear; this
denotes a combo of 2, contributing to score and, on most planets, launching the
Meteos higher.  Some planets allow an infinite amount of ignitions in a stack
as long as there are non-incinerated Meteos, which is useful in Deluge Mode.
The maximum combo is 'x99'.  If you align two or more sets of 3 or more Meteos
with one movement - so that they ignite at exactly the same time - the combo
will increase by only one.  Also, if two stacks join together, the highest
combo of the two becomes the one over the whole new stack.

Sometimes, an ignition in a stack will fire off from the main one, separating
the two.  The way to determine when this will occur, in order to avoid it, is
simple.  The rule is that if Meteos that were not incinerated by this new
ignition that move up because of the ignition slide plast any other Meteos
that are part of the main stack, the entire stack is launched upwards; if none
or only the newly incinerated Meteos have this friction with the main stack, a
separate stack breaks off (made up of those Meteos above the new ignition).

Generally, the way to play is to clear the screen as quickly as possible, which
is most effectively done in one go.  When the screen is made devoid of Meteos,
a great point bonus is given (only helpful in Deluge Mode and perhaps Star
Trip); you know you have achieved this when a small white flash emanates from
the top of the Touch Screen for a split second.  Do this by causing horizontal
ignitions in the very bottom row of the screen and aligning Meteos while the
stack is in the air so that two or more columns will be added to the stack as
it lands.  Examples:

X = Meteos
O = Meteos to be aligned

      XX                     
      XX                     
    X OXX         X XX          X XX
  X X XXX       X X XX        X X XX
X XXX XXX     X XXX XXX     X XXX XXX
X XXXX        X XXXXXXX     X XXXXXXX
XXXXXO        XXXXXXOXX     XXXXXXXXX
XXXXOX        XXXXOO        XXXXOOOXX
Stack is      Line          Ignition!
falling       Meteos up


      O
X     XX     X            X            X
XXX   XX     XXX   X      XXX          XXX
XXX  OXX     XXX   XX     XXX   X      XXX   X
XXX O        XXX   XX     XXX   XX     XXX   XX
XXOXX        XXXXOOOX     XXXXO XX     XXXXX XX
XXXOX        XXOOX        XXOOXOOX     XXOOOOOX
Stack is     Align        Stack        Align quickly
falling      carefully    lands        for ignition

The advantage of using the Speeder (L or R) is great.  It will allow you to
launch more Meteos back off the screen, which can only mean more points, faster
completions and more trouble for opponents.

Finally, it is important to look across the whole screen, not focusing too much
on one area, especially with those planets that have a wider play area.  Send
multiple stacks up into the air just to keep the planet alive while you build
up to a screen clear.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.2. Planets
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

In this section, I provide information on each planet:

Name:              European version name (alternative name).
Gravity strength:  Self-explanatory - qualitatively judged by Meteos fall
                   speed.
Ignition strength: Self-explanatory - qualitatively based on how high a stack
                   of 3x3 or 3x6 goes at game start, including the effect of
                   gravity strength on that.
Screen width:      The number of columns of Meteos.
Revert time:       Time taken by grounded stacks to stop being stacks - timed
                   approximately in seconds at match start.
Quirks:            Strange things on certain planets.
Meteos types:      The planet's Meteos and their frequency (an overview only).
General use: Basic idea of how best to play on the planet.

The order is alphabetical because, apart from the initial 4 planets, the order
on the selection screen is dependent upon that in which they were unlocked.

Name:              Aetheria (Brabbit)
Gravity strength:  High
Ignition strength: Medium
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       1.5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Air and few of other types.
General use: Keep the whole screen in the air for large combos, which is very
             good both defensively and offensively.  Refresh the burnt Meteos
             by igniting a few in a row and releasing L or R.

Name:              Anasaze
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: High
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       2.5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Mostly soil, a little zoo.
General use: Get the whole screen off in the 7th or 8th ignition.

Name:              Arborea (Wuud)
Gravity strength:  High
Ignition strength: Low
Screen width:      10
Revert time:       2
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Herb and not much of other types.
General use: Like Aetheria (Brabbit).  Try not to ignite too quickly to avoid
             losing the stack off the top.

Name:              Bavoom
Gravity strength:  Very high
Ignition strength: Very low
Screen width:      10
Revert time:       3.5
Quirks:            Low gravity strength with speeder on
Meteos types:      Mostly air, but quite varied.
General use: Use its quirk to set up a screen clear and then launch it, but
             beware that other columns will fill up very quickly.

Name:              Candelor (Lastar)
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: High
Screen width:      10
Revert time:       2.5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Wide variation of common types, plus glow.
General use: Set up a screenwide stack that will leave the screen at the 6th or
             7th ignition.

Name:              Cavernis (Cavious)
Gravity strength:  Low
Ignition strength: High
Screen width:      11
Revert time:       2
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Most of soil, otherwise varied.
General use: Screen clears as quickly as possible (x06 combo).

Name:              Florias
Gravity strength:  Low
Ignition strength: High
Screen width:      10
Revert time:       3
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Herb and a relatively large amount of zoo.
General use: Go for screen clears, making sure to keep track of the whole
             (wide) playing field in the later stages.

Name:              Forte
Gravity strength:  Very low
Ignition strength: Low
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       3
Quirks:            Vertical ignition strength is very high
Meteos types:      Heavily weighted towards soil.
General use: Continue with ignitions in a screenwide stack, keeping a vertical
             one in reserve until there are no others.  Use that saved
             alignment to clear the screen when the time comes.

Name:              Geolitia (Geolyte)
Gravity strength:  Very low
Ignition strength: Low
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       2.5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Fair spread with a little zoo.
General use: Quick screen clears at about x06 combo.

Name:              Gigantis (Yooj)
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: High
Screen width:      11
Revert time:       3
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Mostly air, with other common types.
General use: Similar to Geolitia (Geolyte).

Name:              Globin
Gravity strength:  Low
Ignition strength: High
Screen width:      10
Revert time:       3.5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      A lot of zoo, a little dark, the rest equal.
General use: Try to create ignitions of more than 3 Meteos to get the stack to
             cover the screen before it leaves at about the 5th 
             ignition, especially earlier on in the match.

Name:              Gravitas
Gravity strength:  N/A
Ignition strength: N/A
Screen width:      10
Revert time:       5
Quirks:            1st ignition has no ignition strength, 2nd has near-infinite
Meteos types:      A wide variation.
General use: Launch Meteos as quickly as possible with quick double ignitions.

Name:              Hevendor
Gravity strength:  None
Ignition strength: Near-infinite
Screen width:      11
Revert time:       N/A - never had a stack land, though I hear it's possible
Quirks:            No gravity
Meteos types:      Equal proportions of many frequent Meteos.
General use: Quick ignitions, holding L.  Cover the whole screen, not focusing
             too much on one area, and align Meteos on the bottom row.

Name:              Holozero (Layazero)
Gravity strength:  Low
Ignition strength: Medium
Screen width:      8
Revert time:       2
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Zap mainly, and then some of other common types..
General use: Screen clears can be hard to perform consistently while using the
             speeder, as they take as little as 4 ignitions to launch off the
             screen.  This can work quite well if you can get into the pattern,
             as few ignitions are needed.

Name:              Ignius (Firim)
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: Medium
Screen width:      7
Revert time:       2
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Lots of fire.
General use: Clearing the play area is easy to do quickly because of its size
             and the small combo required.

Name:              Insomnis (Dawndus)
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: High
Screen width:      8
Revert time:       4
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Equal spread, including zoo.
General use: Screen clears, lasting up to a x08 or x09 combo.

Name:              Luna=Luna
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: Low
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       1.5
Quirks:            Commits suic- er...None
Meteos types:      Similar to Hevendor.
General use: Because stacks fall back so slowly, you may need to launch the
             tops of the rest of the playing field off to save the planet from
             a nova before you add the next 2 to 4 columns to the stack.

Name:              Magmor (Jeljel)
Gravity strength:  Very low
Ignition strength: Medium
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       2.5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Fire and others.
General use: Clear the screen, which occurs after the 7th ignition.

Name:              Megadom
Gravity strength:  Very low
Ignition strength: Very high
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       2
Quirks:            Very low ignition strength with large stacks
Meteos types:      Nothing in particular, all common.
General use: Wait for some Meteos to land before launching anything, as small
             stacks go off the top straight away.  You can either launch many
             smaller stacks as an offensive playstyle, or create a single stack
             that cannot be launched off the screen in the pursuit of a good
             defence; the latter  poses a danger when the Meteos run out and
             need to be renewed.

Name:              Mekks
Gravity strength:  Very high
Ignition strength: Medium
Screen width:      7
Revert time:       3
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Iron and zap.
General use: Launching from low down in the stack that should quickly grow to
             encompass the entire screen because of its width, continue to
             launch the stack up to the top as many times as possible before
             renewing it.  Try to quickly, successively, align two sets of
             Meteos in one launch skywards to renew more of the stack per
             launch.

Name:              Meteo
Gravity strength:  Very low
Ignition strength: High
Screen width:      11
Revert time:       2
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      A range, including fair amounts of glow, zoo and dark.
General use: The play area's great width makes screen clears hard to set up
             while staying alive.  One way to counter this is to create two
             large stacks on the screen and join them just before they go
             off-screen.

Name:              Neuralis (Wiral)
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: Very low
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       3.5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Zap, a small amount of dark.
General use: Create a single stack and then set up a few more ignitions within
             it to get past the 5th ignition and to achieve a screen clear.

Name:              Oleana
Gravity strength:  Very low
Ignition strength: Low
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       2.5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      H2O, predominantly.
General use: Again, screen clears.  Watch out for the slow fall rate that can
             lead to high columns on the other side of the screen.  To avoid
             novae, start with an ignition that launches the centre columns.

Name:              Perilia (Boggob)
Gravity strength:  Very high
Ignition strength: Medium
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Herb and little of the others.
General use: Try to keep the stacks on-screen long enough to join them
             together.

Name:              Polaria (Freaze)
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: Medium
Screen width:      7
Revert time:       2.5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      H2O, with air, soil, iron and zap.
General use: Very like Ignius (Firim).

Name:              Pyros (Hotted)
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: Very low
Screen width:      10
Revert time:       2.5
Quirks:            1st ignition weak, 2nd strong, weak thereafter
Meteos types:      Almost all fire, some iron and very little dark.
General use: Set up large stacks in double launches to keep the screen
             relatively Meteos-free.

Name:              Sferia (Vubble)
Gravity strength:  Very low
Ignition strength: Very high
Screen width:      8
Revert time:       2.5
Quirks:            x01 combo vertical ignitions don't work
Meteos types:      H2O, and including a little glow.
General use: Wait for taller columns before attempting to assemble any sort of
             large stack for a screen clear.

Name:              Smogor (Grannest)
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: Medium
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       3
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Common Meteos, with more iron than any other.
General use: Again, screen clears at about 8 or more ignitions each.

Name:              Stellis (Starrii)
Gravity strength:  Low
Ignition strength: Very high
Screen width:      8
Revert time:       2.5
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      The most common here is zoo, and there's some glow.
General use: Get the screen clears at 5 to 7 ignitions each.

Name:              Suburbion
Gravity strength:  Very high
Ignition strength: Low
Screen width:      9
Revert time:       4
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      A relatively large amount of dark with others.
General use: Combos make the weak initial ignitions increase in power quickly:
             the stack will often launch a near-full screen
             after only 4 ignitions.  Aim for ignitions of 4 or 5 Meteos to
             clear the screen for those extra points.

Name:              Trinova (Thirnova)
Gravity strength:  Medium
Ignition strength: Very high
Screen width:      11
Revert time:       2
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Fire and zap, with some glow.
General use: Add columns quickly to avoid a nova.

Name:              Vortinia (Gigagush)
Gravity strength:  High
Ignition strength: Medium
Screen width:      11
Revert time:       2
Quirks:            None
Meteos types:      Mostly zoo, but it's not much more frequent than the others.
General use: Ignitions need to be quick so as to enlarge the stack in spite of
             the quick revert time, few Meteos (because most leave the screen
             every single ignition), quick fall rate and very varied Meteos.
             The Meteos will not all launch off the screen, so just keep a
             single, screenwide stack going up and down.  Meteos get renewed
             very efficiently a few minutes into the game, as long as you keep
             launching from the bottom.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3. Strategies
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This is the main body of the guide.  Here, I go over the various modes in the
game and give explanations for how to best cope in the different situations.  I
have organised the subsections by objective, of which there are very few, but
which are spread out across the game's modes, so as to avoid repeating
information: this way, I can give a general introduction to the objective that
applies to all further subsections.  Star Trip has its own section because
splitting up its individual modes would get complicated.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.1. Playing for points
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This section covers modes where your aim is to earn as many points as possible,
within a time- or nova-limit.
_______________________________________________________________________________

Firstly, an explanation of the scoring system.

You are awarded points for just three things (ignitions, launched Meteos and
screen clears):

P  = number of points
N  = number of aligned Meteos
C  = combo number
Ln = number of launched non-incinerated Meteos
Li = number of launched incinerated Meteos
I  = 10 when Li is greater than 0 (= 0 when Li is 0)

Ignitions:       P = 100*N*C
Launched Meteos: P = (30*Ln)+(10*Li+I)
Screen Clears:   P = about 10,000        Not sure what it depends on yet.

This shows why it is better to ignite more than 3 Meteos.  For every extra one
you align, you get a minimum of 100 extra points (a maximum of 9900 extra),
while incinerating it loses you only 20 points, and that only if it gets off
the screen.

Also, consider that when playing for points, there are, where combos can be
made, two ways to play: either to aim for screen clears as often as possible,
or to aim for a combo as high as possible (possibly with a screen clear at its
end too).  Deciding which to use depends on the maximum combo before the stack
can no longer stay on-screen: if 300*the highest possible combo is greater than
10,000, continue  causing ignitions rather than clearing the screen.
Therefore, force a screen clear as quickly as possible if the stack cannot stay
on-screen for 10,000/300 ignitions - around 33, or 25 or 20 if you can
consistently align 4 or 5 Meteos respectively.  However, there are few planets
that can make it this far, which makes this paragraph quite redundant...

Where you can continue combos until you run out of Meteos in the stack, either
try to launch it high up to refresh the top half with new Meteos, or set up
Meteos that will be easy to ignite to save the planet from a nova when it all
lands, to start another combo.  This can be repeated infinitely on certain
planets to attain multiple x99 combos.
_______________________________________________________________________________

Here are general strategies and advice to get points.  Of course, these are not
true for all planets.

Firstly, although not important, always try to ignite 4 or 5 Meteos in a row
rather than 3, because you earn 1.333 or 1.666 times more points respectively
for it.  Keep the speeder on almost all the time, but release the button if you
are in danger of annihilation.

Secondly, launch from the bottom row, using horizontal launches.  This is
essential for getting screen clears, which is usually the aim.  Add Meteos to
stacks a few columns at a time quickly to form one large stack and then launch
it off-screen with a few quick ignitions.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.1.1. Deluge
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

In Deluge Mode, you play for as many points as possible in one nova, the
maximum score for any one planet being 9,999,999.  Unless you can set up an
infinite combo one way or another, the amount of Meteos falling past the
3-minute mark is very hard to keep up with, and most games will not last much
longer than 3 minutes, at least initially.  Here, I will describe strategies
for each planet to attain high scores.  Again, they are listed alphabetically.

To shorten the section, I will describe the two main methods here, and refer to
them in the list.  The method to use depends on the highest combo achievable
before the stack will no longer stay on the screen.  The first is for those
planets that can sustain more subsequent ignitions; the second, more common
general strategy is better where Meteos cannot stay on screen for too high a
combo.  There are planets that are different, however, and require something
else.

Use a few ignitions to create a stack and add columns to it so that you control
the entire screen of Meteos.  The way to set off ignitions within it depends on
the planet: either a few to boost it up high so that the top is refreshed with
new, non-incinerated Meteos, or as many as possible continually until there are
no more possible ignitions.  The latter is used where ignitions are not very
effective and will not send the stack off the screen.  To refresh the stack,
either allow it to fall, setting up a few Meteos in place to save the planet
from a nova once everything starts flashing; or, preferably (if possible) align
a few sets of Meteos in succession to launch everything up and off the screen,
earning a screen clear.  Even more preferably, just refresh the top half of the
stack by moving it up high but not off the screen: this is most effective when
the Meteos fall rate is higher, and is more advantageous because the combo is
not reset.

Otherwise, aim for rapid, continuous screen clears, the quicker the better.
Try to assemble a stack with all the screen's Meteos and launch it quickly with
multiple ignitions within.
_______________________________________________________________________________

Aetheria (Brabbit)
 This is, in my opinion, the easiest planet to start achieving very high scores
 on.  It is possible to sustain a stack in the air for a long time: make it as
 wide as the screen and keep launching it up and then letting it fall a bit.
 This is so as not to lose the stack off the top of the screen, and generally
 can be raplaced with very fast, multiple ignitions after 2 minutes.  When
 using the speeder does not let the stack rise at all, let go of L or R for a
 few ignitions to launch it up, refreshing its top, ready for more.  Also, keep
 a few Meteos down the bottom in reserve, lined up ready to ignite if it gets
 near to losing the stack.

Anasaze
 Here, go for screen clears, which happen at the 8th or 9th ignition.  Use the
 abundant earth Meteos to make finding aligments easy, and make sure to launch
 from the bottom of the pile to get those 10,000 or so extra points.

Arborea (Wuud)
 Set up a stack for combos.  Because the Meteos fall slowly when setting the
 combo up, you may need to launch a few Meteos while waiting, to avoid
 annihilation.  It is easy to have the stack turn into individual Meteos at
 the start by launching it too high because few Meteos land, so try not to
 create too many ignitions early on.  It can be helpful to release L or R while
 the stack is going up so that more of the incinerated Meteos are refreshed.

Bavoom
 The aim is screen clears again.  Use the fact that the speeder slows the fall
 rate to help when putting the large stack together, letting it fall fast when
 things are aligned for the next ignition by letting go of the button.  Beware,
 though, that keeping the speeder on and waiting for stacks to descend slowly
 will likely lead to flashing columns elsewhere on the screen.

Candelor (Lastar)
 Screen clears.  However, the low amount of ignitions needed makes adding every
 Meteos to the stack before it goes away difficult.  Try to align 5 Meteos for
 ignitions, or have a falling stack add columns to itself either side, which
 counts as single extra combo.  Annoyingly, before a minute passes, the stack
 can end up as a single, completely incinerated row after the 5th ignition,
 and the Meteos are not replaced quickly enough to make another one; avoid this
 by igniting again on the way up, which will also add more points.

Cavernis (Cavious)
 Let a few rows of Meteos fall before starting, so as to avoid losing small
 stacks separately.  A screen clear usually takes in the area of 8 ignitions.

Florias
 Again, screen clears.  Watch out for the wide screen, which makes it hard to
 cover the whole field of Meteos.  Sometimes only a x06 combo will launch
 everything off-screen, so add everything to the stack as quickly as possible.
 After 3 minutes, using the speeder is very hard because of the 11 columns, so
 use it only when a nova is likely.

Forte
 Playing here is quite interesting because of the strength of vertical
 ignitions.  Keep one in reserve in the stack for the end to launch it all, and
 raise the combo quickly.  That the stack barely moves and that half of the
 Meteos are earth makes very quick successive ignitions easy - aim for 15 to 20
 before using that vertical ignition to start the cycle over again.

Geolitia (Geolyte)
 This is the typical planet, where screen clears work best and occur at just
 the right time for quick play.  Quickly set it up and align a few more sets
 of Meteos to get rid of the screen's Meteos.

Gigantis (Yooj)
 The amount of combos required is 7 or 8, but the high Meteos fall speed and
 screen width makes it hard to sustain a chain of screen clears for long.  You
 have to work quickly to link up the columns into one stack, while watching all
 of the screen.

Globin
 The Meteos will leave the screen at a x05 combo even if there are many Meteos
 in the stack, and the screen's width is 10 columns, so you may need to add
 columns to both sides of a stack returning to the ground, or create 4- or
 5-Meteos ignitions to make the stack large enough before it is launched away.

Gravitas
 This planet is a strange one, and doesn't make it easy to achieve anything
 high at all.  Use 4- and 5-width ignitions in pairs that slightly overlap to
 rid the whole screen of Meteos in a couple of launches.  Screen clears are
 possible, but difficult to set up: set off x01 ignitions on the far left and
 far right of the screen, and link these two together on the bottom row with a
 third ignition that overlaps both of the first two.  You will need to keep an
 eye on the tops of the columns while you set this up.

Hevendor
 Again, it's very hard to reach high scores here because Meteos leave at the
 first ignition, only returning to the planet under very, very rare
 circumstances.  Screen clears are possible, if you can set off the 3 ignitions
 required covering all 11 columns at near enough the same time that no more
 Meteos fall onto the screen before the screen is clear.  If you can manage
 these, go for them all the time; if not, you will make more points by simply
 launching many small stacks of Meteos as quickly as possible.  The reason I
 say small stacks is that ignitions earn you more points than Meteos launched,
 so you should aim for ignitions rather than to launch many Meteos.  Still,
 launch larger stacks if you are in danger of a planet nova.

Holozero (Layazero)
 Screen clears are, once again, the objective.  They work quite well here, and
 you should have no trouble getting the Meteos to leave the screen.  If you
 find it hard to attach all Meteos to the stack before it leaves off the top,
 try to use 4- or 5-Meteos alignments instead: remember that slow screen clears
 are far more point-efficient, time-wise, than quick launches of quite large
 stacks.  As always, launch from the bottom.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.1.2. Time War I
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

2:00 Time War

This is very similar to Deluge Mode.  You play on Geolitia (Geolyte), and need
the best score possible within 2 minutes.  Constant screen clears work best and
occur at just the right time for quick play.  Quickly set it up and align a few
more sets of Meteos to get rid of the everything on the screen in one go.
160,000 or more is a decent score here, if you practise enough.
_______________________________________________________________________________

5:00 Time War

Again, like Deluge Mode with Holozero (Layazero).  However, the speed doesn't
increase much, and is still very playable right up to the time limit, meaning
higher scores are possible than with the same planet on a Deluge match.  Screen
clears work quite well here, and you should have no trouble getting the Meteos
to leave the screen.  If you find it hard to attach all Meteos to the stack
before it leaves off the top, try to use 4- or 5-Meteos alignments instead:
remember that slow screen clears are far more point-efficient, time-wise, than
quick launches of quite large stacks.  As always, launch from the bottom.  A
score of 300,000 is difficult, but achievable.  Don't expect anything so high
if you're new to the game, though.  

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.2. Playing for Meteos
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The objective is to earn Meteos in two of the Time Wars, and Simple and
multiplayer matches.  There is no multiplayer section, because that is the same
as Simple...and also I have no-one to play with...

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.2.1. Time War II
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

100-Meteos War

The aim is to launch 100 Meteos as quickly as possible, on Ignius (Firim), and
the Meteos fall rate starts very high.  When you first play the game, it is
difficult even to survive; once you can pick out the alignments to make for a
quick screen clear, it gets easier.  If you win while holding L or R the
entire time, a time above 15 seconds is unlikely: using the speeder is the
first step to quick completions.

Steps for a good time:
 - Align the Meteos for the first ignition straight away, either in the middle
   or completely to one side.  Preferably, this should be made of 4 or 5
   Meteos, as this will launch more Meteos off the screen in this first
   ignition.
 - Add a column or two onto this as it falls back down.  If possible, try to
   create an entire screen stack on this second ignition either by using
   5-Meteos ignitions or adding columns either side of the initial stack.
   This should also be done as quickly as possible.
 - Add more columns with the next ignition if there are any left (again,
   quickly); otherwise, align Meteos within the stack (3 only) as it nears the
   ground.
 - Wait for some time, then align the final 3 Meteos.  The timing is vital: too
   long and the stack won't go high enough to reach the 100-Meteos target this
   ignition; too short and it will go off the screen before the target is
   reached, as there are not enough Meteos on the stack.  Aim for about half a
   second of time of the ground, in general.  If possible, use a vertical
   ignition, as this will lower the time that Meteos take to go up, and negate
   the possibility of the stack not traveling high enough to reach 100.

Basically, fiddle around with the timings of these four ignitions, and you
should need only those to launch 100 Meteos.  Look at how many Meteos are left
to reach 100, or how many more rows would have launched if the limit were not
reached, and adjust the timing appropriately next time.  If all this is done
well, times sub-8.00 are achievable: currently, my best is 7.05.
_______________________________________________________________________________

1000-Meteos War

Firstly, use the speeder while you can.  Part of getting a time under 1:30
depends on luck - on how many Meteos fall in the time; partly, it's finding
good, 3+ Meteos horizontal ignitions quickly; partly, it's strategy.  Wait
between ignitions for the Meteos to pile up, then launch from the very bottom
row, going from one side of the screen to the other so as not to let any one
area pile too high.  This means that fewer Meteos get incinerated.  Also, avoid
leaving single or double columns on their own, as their flashing and beeping of
impending doom can get annoying.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.2.2. Simple
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A Simple game is very similar to a multiplayer game, so these strategies apply
to that as well.  Here are general strategies to employ in a match.

Use the speeder: the more Meteos that come down, the more that can go back up.
If there is more than one opponent, aim at one first, then the other once (if)
that dies, by selecting it on the left of the Touch Screen.  This will kill one
quicker, meaning you are bombarded by less of an attack from then on.
The basic idea in a Simple match is to launch really large blocks of Meteos
together, completely filling your opponent's screens.  Do this with screen
clears for most planets, as often as possible, and waiting a little for the
Meteos to pile up before the final ignition (don't leave it too long, though).

On Forte, use a vertical ignition to launch the stack.

On Gravitas, Hevendor and Pyros (Hotted), aim instead to launch many stacks as
large as possible, unless you can manage screen clears.

On Megadom, launch many smaller stacks of Meteos: forming a single massive
stack will not allow for it to be launched, and will eventually leave the
entire screen flashing.

On Aetheria (Brabbit), Arborea (Wuud), Mekks and Vortinia (Gigagush), create a
single, screen-filling stack and launch it up intermittently.  Use a few
ignitions per launch upwards to refresh a lot of Meteos, but not so many that
you will lose the stack: this varies with Meteos fall rate.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.2.3. Fusion
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

This section details how best to earn the Meteos for fusion rather than the
actual amounts required for anything.  Simply know that to get a planet, item
or sound set to appear in the Fusion Room, collect the amount of Meteos
required to unlock it; once that is done, it will always be there to fuse at
any time you want.

Other than playing on the planets with the most of the Meteos type required,
you could use this concept from section 4.1.1:

'In modes where you attack another planet - Star Trip, Simple and Multiplayer -
[...] if Meteos land on your screen already incinerated, they are from another
planet in the match: for those Meteos, the probability for which type of Meteos
they will change into if left is dependent on the data for the planet on which
they were last non-incinerated.  That means you are likely to have incinerated
Meteos from Ignius (Firim) return to fire Meteos, even if your planet has a
very low likelihood or even an absence of them.'

So, play a Simple match as Hevendor against 3 of the planets with the best
distribution of the Meteos type you want, set the difficulty to 1 star and the
CPU level to the highest you can manage.  When already-incinerated Meteos land,
allow them to revert to their non-incinerated forms, and then play as you
normally would in a Simple match.  I say to use Hevendor because this makes it
easy to launch a lot of Meteos quickly, especially where the difficulty is low,
without incinerating many Meteos; of course, you could use any other planet, to
your preference.

You will find that you collect pretty much all the more common Meteos you need
in normal play anyway, but some of the rarer Meteos are found only on certain
planets.  Here is a list of the best planets for each Meteos type: either play
on them or use the strategy above.  This is the order in the Fusion Room, and
is pretty much from common to rare.  The planets are listed from, in my
opinion, best to worst for that Meteos.

Air  - Aetheria (Brabbit), Bavoom, Gigantis (Yooj)
Fire - Pyros (Hotted), Ignius (Firim), Magmor (Jeljel)
H2O  - Sferia (Vubble), Polaria (Freaze)
Soil - Forte, Anasaze, Gravitas
Iron - Mekks, Smogor (Grannest), Suburbion
Zap  - Neuralis (Wiral) (by far), Holozero (Layazero)
Herb - Perilia (Boggob), Arborea (Wuud), Florias
Zoo  - Stellis (Starrii), Globin, Florias
Glow - Candelor (Lastar), Meteo, Trinova (Thirnova)
Dark - Meteo, Suburbion

Soul and Time are extremely rare and evenly distributed across all planets, and
can also be fused in the Fusion Room.  The following is a list of which planets
can provide which of these two 'Rare Metals', but it is advised to buy them
instead due to their infrequency in-game.

SOUL                    TIME
Aetheria (Brabbit)      Anasaze
Arborea (Wuud)          Bavoom
Florias                 Candelor (Lastar)
Forte                   Cavernis (Cavious)
Geolitia (Geolyte)      Freaze
Globin                  Gigantis (Yooj)
Insomnis (Dawndus)      Gravitas
Luna=Luna               Hevendor
Magmor (Jeljel)         Holozero (Layazero)
Oleana                  Ignius (Firim)
Perilia (Boggob)        Megadom
Pyros (Hotted)          Mekks
Suburbion               Neuralis (Wiral)
Vortinia (Gigagush)     Sferia (Vubble)
                        Smogor (Grannest)
                        Stellis (Starrii)
                        Trinova (Thirnova)

Planet Meteo and the planet in the credits at the end of Star Trip can have
both Rare Metals land.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.3. Playing for Star Trip endings
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

There are a total of 12 Star Trip endings in Meteos.  This section concerns
unlocking each one.  I will add the names of the endings at a later date.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.3.1. Straight
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ONE: INVISIBLE BONDS

Complete the mode once, with fewer than 500,000 points to unlock the first
ending of the game.  You will play against 6 randomly selected planets which
are not your chosen Home Planets, plus Meteo at the end, and are able to set
the difficulty.  It really couldn't be easier.
_______________________________________________________________________________

TWO: A MIRACLE REBORN

Complete with 500,000 or more points.  This is a little more difficult.
Firstly, be aware that losing and then continuing will half your total points;
secondly, you are given extra points between planets, 10,000 points for the
first, working its way up by tens of thousands to 60,000 betweens planets 6 and
Meteo.  This means, provided you don't suffer a nova, that you have 210,000 to
start with, and need only earn 290,000 more.

I would suggest selecting Hevendor as your Home Planet because it makes points
hard to get.  As you go along, use the strategies outlined in the Deluge
section (4.3.1.1) but slow it down a little to ensure that the match lasts
longer than it would if you attacked as well as possible.  You must, however,
finish each battle within the 3-minute time limit so as to avoid losing half
your points.  Play at the highest difficulty you can cope with, probably 3
stars or more required to keep the opponents alive long enough to earn
sufficient points.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.3.2. Branch
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

THREE: A SPIRITUAL LEGACY
FOUR: A SPORT IS BORN
FIVE: THE GALAXY EMBARKS
SIX: THE NEW UTOPIA
SEVEN: THE GALACTIC FORK
EIGHT: IN THE ANGEL'S HALO
NINE: A NEW UNIVERSE

In this mode, each of the 7 possible different encounters with planet Meteo at
the end yield a different ending.  This time, there are 8 planets to defeat
along the way, 28 spread out over the routes; however, they are selected
independently of your chosen Home Planet, and are in the exact same layout
every time you play.  Each time you get a victory by annihilating your opponent
within 3 minutes, you get a choice of routes, higher or lower.  Select a fairly
low difficulty to make achieving all 7 endings here a quick and easy affair.
The order in which they are listed above is from top to bottom on the in-game
layout.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
.4.3.3.3. Multi
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

A mission is given at each encounter, where you battle with up to 3 other
planets: succeed to get a choice of routes, or fail to be forced into the lower
option.  You always play on a random one of the planets you must play against.
Your chosen Home Planet makes no difference at all.
_______________________________________________________________________________

STRATEGIES TO WIN MISSIONS

If at any point you are about to win without completing the mission, you can
try again by forcing a planet nova.  You'll halve your points, but get another
go.

The information is in this format:

#.  Name
    Mission/ENDING
    Planet(s)
Strategies

1.  H2O Planetaries
    Win within 2:30
    Geolitia (Geolyte), Oleana
To beat them quickly, aim at one first, then, after it goes out, attack the
other.  Aim for screen clears as quickly as possible with either planet.

2.  Chlorophylls
    Launch 200 Meteos or more
    Arborea (Wuud), Perilia (Boggob)
As long as the match lasts more than 30 seconds, you should be able to launch
the required amount of Meteos.  If this fails, try to be less offensive and
make it last a little longer.

3.  Molten Hellions
    Launch 100 Meteos or more
    Ignius (Firim), Pyros (Hotted)
This should be very quick and easy, seeing as 100 Meteos can be launched in a
couple of screen clears on Ignius (Firim) or a few large stacks launched on
Pyros (Hotted).

4.  Earth Lovers
    Clear the screen of Meteos
    Anasaze, Cavernis (Cavious), Forte
Although easiest on Forte, there is no problem here.  Do as normal on the other
two, and align 3 Meteos vertically on Forte when the stack covers the screen.

5.  Mechatropoloids
    Clear the screen of Meteos
    Megadom, Smogor (Grannest)
This can be quite difficult to achieve on Megadom because large stacks go
virtually nowhere.  Try to set the screen clear up before too many Meteos land,
or commit suicide until you get Smogor (Grannest).

6.  Stray Planet
    Battle for over 1:00 and win
    Magmor (Jeljel)
As long as you hold off for the first minute, your computer-controlled opponent
should last long enough.

7.  Dimensionals
    Send 50 burnt Meteos or more
    Gravitas, Trinova (Thirnova), Vortinia (Gigagush)
Wait until large amounts of burnt Meteos land on the screen, then launch them
away quickly before they revert to ordinary Meteos.  Easiest on Gravitas since
the second ignition is guaranteed to go off-screen.

8.  Bubblies
    Launch 30 H2O Meteos or more
    Florias, Sferia (Vubble), Stellis (Starrii)
This shouldn't be difficult, especially with Sferia (Vubble): just launch
Meteos as normal.  You are likely to launch 200+ total Meteos anyway; just try
not to incinerate many of the H2O ones.

9.  Clean Air Club
    Launch 75 Meteos at once
    Aetheria (Brabbit), Bavoom, Gigantis (Yooj)
To launch so many Meteos, you need to launch a screen-wide stack upwards but
not off the screen, and keep it high up with the speeder on so that landing
Meteos are immediately launched; set off another ignition if the stack begins
to fall before the display on the right indicates that 75 or more will be
launched.  This can be quite a challenge if the difficulty is low, because the
Meteos fall rate won't be great enough to keep stacks from leaving the screen.
This is easiest to achieve with Aetheria (Brabbit) because of its very low
Meteos fall rate.

10. Hot & Chillies
    Launch 50 Meteos at once
    Insomnis (Dawndus), Polaria (Freaze)
All this requires is a screen clear, perhaps waiting for a few more Meteos to
add to the stack than you normally would before the final ignition.

11. Electric Nymphs
    Launch 30 Meteos at once
    Mekks, Neuralis (Wiral)
This is quite easy to pull off: just launch a large stack up and off the
screen, or keep it up there with more ignitions on Mekks.  On Neuralis (Wiral),
a screen clear is easily enough.

12. Rare Cultures
    No mission
    Candelor (Lastar), Globin, Suburbion
No mission - no strategy.

13. Illusionists
    No mission
    Holozero (Layazero), Holozero (Layazero), Holozero (Layazero)
No mission - no strategy.

14. Twin Moons
    Win within 1:30
    Luna=Luna
It's too easy to win here; rather, you should be aiming to fail the mission but
win the match.  For help with that, see ending twelve below.

15. Hevendor Realm
    Win within 2:00
    Hevendor, Hevendor, Hevendor
This can be very hard to do because there are 3 enemy planets.  Firstly, you
could set the difficulty to a low value for the whole Star Trip.  Secondly, be
sure to focus on the Hevendors in turn by touching one on the left to select it
at the start, then another when the first is annihilated.  Try to launch very
large stacks from low down on the screen, waiting for incinerated Meteos from
the other planets to revert before you launch them.  Try not to leave single or
double columns on their own near at one side.

16. True Meteo
    TEN: THE ASCENT
    Meteo, Meteo, Meteo
Again, because there are 3 planets to defeat, you may have some trouble with
this one.  Aim for screen clears, and follow the advice for mission 15.

17. Meteo
    ELEVEN: THE GREAT BATTLE
    Meteo
This is easy enough: just defeat planet Meteo.  Do as you would on Simple mode.

18. Meteo
    TWELVE: THE LIMITLESS EYE
    Meteo
This is easy enough: just defeat planet Meteo.  Do as you would on Simple mode.
_______________________________________________________________________________

STRATEGIES TO SURVIVE

To survive in matches where 3 planets attack you together (particularly
missions 8, 12, 15 and 16), either set the difficulty to 1 star - this makes
things harder when aiming for ending twelve - or aim for one planet over the
others, as you might in a Simple match.  Do this by selecting the planet to
destroy first on the left of the play area; this will help by focusing all
attacks on one opponent.  Take them out in turn, and there should be no
trouble.
_______________________________________________________________________________

ENCOUNTER LAYOUT

Following each number in the diagram is a dash, then something like '4A-5B',
where the numbers are the possible next encounters, and the letters indicate
the path.  The numbers match those in the section above.

A = path opened by completing mission
B = path open without completing any missions
c = path opened by failing mission

                                9-12A-13B               16
                4-7A-8B                 12-15B
        2-4A-5B         7-9A-10B                15-16A-17C

1-2A-3B         5-7A-8B         10-12A-14B              17
                                        13-17B
        3-5A-6B         8-10A-11B
                6-7A-8B                 14-17A-18C
                                11-13A-14B              18

16, 17 and 18 are the 3 possible last matches, and each give a different
ending.  As you can see, 17 is by far the easiest ending to get because there
are 3 routes to it, while 18 requires that you fail mission 14 and 16 requires
that you succeed at mission 15.
_______________________________________________________________________________

SUGGESTED ROUTES

TEN: THE ASCENT

For this ending, you must beat 'True Meteo', which is 3 planet Meteos at once.
The only way to get to this (16) is by completing mission 15, 'Hevendor Realm'.
It is therefore required that you reach mission 12, by succeeding with either
mission 9 or 10, preferably 10 because of the easier mission.  I suggest this
route:

win 1 -> 2 -> 4 or 5 -> 7 or win 8 -> win 10 -> 12 -> win 15 -> 16.

ELEVEN: THE GREAT BATTLE

There are so many possible ways to get to encounter 17, so there is little
point in suggesting any one over any others.  You will basically end up here if
you reach 13, fail 15 or win 14.

TWELVE: THE LIMITLESS EYE

Attaining this one shouldn't be hard, but it is, because of the absolute
failure that is a computer-controlled Luna=Luna.  You absolutely must fail
mission 14, which entails keeping Luna=Luna alive for 1:30.  This is best done
by setting the difficulty to 5 stars, and then, once at the mission, not using
the speeder until after 1:30.  Launch very small stacks off the top of columns,
preferably with little more than 5 non-incinerated Meteos on them, when a
column starts to flash.  After 1:30, you should have no problem helping your
opponent to annihilate itself...

This is the route I propose, going to 7 (Dimensionals) rather than 8 (Bubblies)
for ease of survival.  For this, you must win mission 6 (Stray Planet):

1 -> 3 -> win 6 -> 7 -> 10 -> lose 14 -> 18.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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