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    FAQ by QXZ

    Version: 0.2 | Updated: 02/27/06 | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    John Isles, iv <qxz@verizon.net>, presents a FAQ that has mysteriously 
    disappeared from the face of the Earth...
     ___   ___   ___   ___   ___     _____  ___  ___  ___          ___         ____
    /   \ /   \ |   \ |   \ /   \      |   |   \  |  /   \ |\   | /   \ |     /
    |     |   | |___/ |___/ |___|      |   |___/  |  |___| | \  | | __  |     |___
    |     |   | |   \ |  \  |   |      |   |  \   |  |   | |  \ | |   | |     |
    \___/ \___/ |___/ |   \ |   |      |   |   \ _|_ |   | |   \| \___/ \____ \____
    The latest revision of this document can always be found -- and should ONLY be
    found -- at these authorized site(s):
       - GameFAQs     -- <http://www.gamefaqs.com/>
       - HonestGamers -- <http://www.honestgamers.com/>
     /1.  CONTENTS\_______________________________________________________________
    ---  TITLE
     1.  CONTENTS (current location)
     5.  OPTIONS
     6.  CONTROLS
         A.  MODS & UPGRADES
         B.  COLLECT PODS
         G.  FRY THE MONSTER
     9.  GOT FEEDBACK?
    10.  AND FINALLY...
     /2.  MANDATORY LEGAL DISCLAIMER\______________________________________________
    `Cobra Triangle` is a registered trademark of Nintendo and Rare, (c) 1988.  All
    other trademarked items mentioned within this guide are properties of their
    respective companies.
         This guide is (c) 2006 John Isles, iv, and has not been produced, author-
    ized, sponsored, nor (sadly) has it been funded by anyone involved in the
    production and/or distribution of this game, manual, or whoever supplied the
    chips/discs -- that should cover just about everyone.
    ================================{ TERMS OF USE }================================
    I've put quite a bit of time and effort into writing this guide, and would LOVE
    to see many people use it as a helpful and witty resource.  Regardless if you're
    viewing this guide online, or have a copy saved to your computer, please observe
    and honor the following rules:
       - Stealing's bad, mm-kay?  Don't host this guide without asking first.
       - Don't change this guide's format.  Plain black-and-white .TXT only, please!
       - My name, the list of authorized sites, this legal disclaimer, as well as
         any other copyright notices, and the <AND FINALLY...> chapter -- please 
         don't touch them.
       - Most importantly, you may NEVER sell and/or trade this guide in any
         medium -- electronic, print, etc. -- for goods, services, and/or monetary
         gain.  I'm not making any profit off this; it's legally and morally fair
         nobody else does, either.
     /3.  DOCUMENT HISTORY\________________________________________________________
    ========================={ 0.2 -- released 2006.2.27 }==========================
    Took me three friggin years, but I finally got around to an update.  In addition
    to getting a new host at HonestGamers, I've made a few changes:
       - The layout's been restructured to look less crowded.
       - Items listing is located in <THE COBRA CLASS SPEEDBOAT> chapter.
       - Due to unnecessarily bogging the guide down, the enemy chapter is gone.
         However, enemy information can now be found under <STAGE DESCRIPTIONS>.
    ========================={ 0.1 -- released 2003.1.31 }==========================
    The initial release.
     /4.  HOW TO READ THIS FAQ/STRATEGY GUIDE\_____________________________________
    With your eyes opened, preferably.  :P
         Because this guide might use text tables and some low-end           +-----
    art, please use a monospaced (or fixed-width) font.  Courier New,        |XXXXX
    Andale Mono (my personal favorite), and the Mac-exclusive Monaco         |XXXXX
    are but three such fonts... and these three are free!               -----+-----
         To test your font, just click between any two characters and   XXXXX|
    drag your mouse up or down to the next line.  Should the high-      XXXXX|
    lighted area meet corner to corner, as simulated on the right,      -----+
    then you're good to go.
     /5.  OPTIONS\_________________________________________________________________
    All you get is a solo campaign with two continues, three lives issued per game.
     /6.  CONTROLS\________________________________________________________________
    I'd usually add some info on story, but I don't have any real basis for this. 
    I'm just skipping to the controls.
    ================================={ ARROW PAD }==================================
    Pressing [LEFT] and [RIGHT] steer your boat.  [UP] and [DOWN] have no function
    during the main game.
    ================================={ (A) BUTTON }=================================
    Fires your boat's gun (and missiles if activated).  Through the use of pods, you
    can change how it fires.  More on missiles at a later time.
    ================================={ (B) BUTTON }=================================
    Your gas pedal.  Holding it down speed you along the river; release it, and
    you'll stop on a dime.
    =============================={ (SELECT) BUTTON }===============================
    Despite being the NES controller's least-used button, it serves a vital func-
    tion:  It'll activate specialized upgrades on your boat.  (Head on down to the
    <COBRA CLASS SPEEDBOAT> chapter fore more.)
    ==============================={ (START) BUTTON }===============================
    Starts the game.  Will also pause it -- an NES tradition.
     /7.  THE COBRA CLASS SPEEDBOAT\_______________________________________________
    Congratulations!  You've just purchased a Cobra Class speedboat!  It's fast,
    equipped with a limitless supply of ammo, and most of all, it's RED!
         Pretty much all the information you need can be found on the console
    located at the bottom of the screen:  The time remaining to complete the level,
    your current speed, the number of lives remaining, your score, and life meters
    for both your boat and, when appropriate, a boss monster.
     _____/A.  MODS & UPGRADES\____________________________________________________
    Throughout the game, you'll find pods.  It is in your best         ___     ___
    interest to collect these when you see them, as they'll allow     /   \   /   \
    you to improve your boat's capabilities.  In fact, upgrading     /\___/\ /\___/\
    the CCSB is key to your very survival in these wild waters.      \/_1_\/ \/_2_\/
         As you collect these pods, one of five different words
    on the boat's console will start flashing in order from left to right.  The
    flashing wraps around after if you've collected more than five (from FORCE to
    TURBO).  By pressing (SELECT), you'll activate whatever's currently flashing.
         Of these abilities, three -- Turbo, Speed, and Missile -- can only be taken
    so far; when they've reached their ultimate potential, you'll see a series of
    dashes in their place.  Fire and Force, however, can be used infinitely...
    provided you can get the required combination of pods.
         And one final item:  Upgrades are kept until all lives and continues are
    ==================================={ TURBO }====================================
    This one-time upgrade improves the CCSB's acceleration (in other words, going
    from zero to sixty in "holy crap!").  This should be the very first upgrade you
    ===================================={ FIRE }====================================
    Activating this will alter your CCSB's firing pattern, each change requiring two
    pods.  The upgrades are provided in this order (3, 4, and 6 are depicted with a
    diagram below):
      1.  Increases bullet speed.
      2.  Increases bullet speed again.
      3.  After firing off your gun, pressing (A) while your bullet's still on the
          screen result in the shot breaking off into four directions.  Think of it
          as starting as a minus sign, turning into a plus sign.
      4.  Number 3's plus-shaped firing comes directly from the CCSB.
      5.  A spread-fire gun, covering about twice the width of your boat.  Useful
          for concentrated firepower against the boss monsters.
      6.  Four bullets slowly spread out from the front of the CCSB; pressing (A) a
          second time propels your shots forward at a blistering pace.  You'll need
          to time your button pressing to get the most of this mode.
     /  FIRING MODE #3  /  FIRING MODE #4  /  FIRING MODE #6  /
    |            o   o |        o         |  o|---o----o----o|
    |             \ /  |        |         | /o|---o----o----o|
    | o--o--o--o--(A)  | o--o--(A)--o--o  |<<(A)             |
    |             / \  |        |         | \o|---o----o----o|
    |            o   o |        o         |  o|---o----o----o|
    One more thing worth mentioning:  Firing modes 4 through 6 loop around ad
    infinitum.  There is no "ultimate" upgrade.
    ==================================={ SPEED }====================================
    Don't feel like 65 mph is fast enough for a speedboat?  Then try putting a few
    steroids in your engine!
         Oh, sure -- you might think this won't do anything important, but trust me
    on this:  You'll need every bit of horsepower you can get your hands on to clear
    those ramps later on in the game.  Your top speed can be increased up to three
    times, and you'll need three pods each time.
    =================================={ MISSILE }===================================
    Collect four pods, and you can get to shoot missiles!  Activate this a third
    (and final) time to fire off homing missiles.
    ==================================={ FORCE }====================================
    For the low, low price of five pods (or any multiple thereof), this wonder of
    modern science will instantly repair any and all damage done to your Cobra Class
    Speedboat.  Order now, and you'll also get temporary invulnerability from enemy
    attacks.  And as a SPECIAL bonus, you'll get a limitless cache of homing
    missiles at no additional cost!  We'll even pay for shipping.  So whaddaya
    waitin' for?  ORDER NOW!
         (The fine print:  Warranty does not cover damage made from geological
    contact.  Limited time offer.  California residents, add 8.25% sales tax.)
     _____/B.  EARNING EXTRA LIVES\________________________________________________
    Regardless how many pods you pick up, they're not quite as vital to your success
    as the elusive 1-up token.  Beyond the rather obvious token in the first level,
    opportunities for extra lives are about as uncommon as a Republican Hollywood
    actor.  The best chance to stock up on lives is during the pod collection
    stages... and you'll be fortunate to find more than one then.
     /8.  LEVEL STRATEGIES\________________________________________________________
    I am going to make a stark admission:  I have not completed this game.  There
    are purportedly 25 levels; the farthest I've ever gotten in level 23.  In spite
    of this, I don't think a complete walkthrough is necessary... mainly because the
    game really defies the need for one.
    ============================={ PLAYING FOR SCORE }==============================
    In addition to scoring points for completing certain goals in a level, you'll
    earn extra points for the following:
       - At the start of every level, if you press (A) at about the same time the
         level description appears, you'll net a quick 1,000 pts.  If you're not
         using auto-fire, this bonus will require a bit of luck.
       - Once you cross the finish line in certain levels, you'll score 1,000 pts.
         for each 180o you spin.
       - Excluding the pod and lifeguard missions, you'll score 500 pts. for each
         second remaining on the clock.
    If playing for score, there's one thing you need to be aware of:  The
    programmers never considered that million-point scores were possible, so the
    score display only goes up to 999,950.  Any further scoring resets your score to
    zero, not one million.  So if you're trying to enter some Internet high-score
    contest, then you'd best have a video camera around to record the footage as
    hard proof of your achievement.
    ============================={ A CAUSE FOR ALARM }==============================
    When you start hearing a "beep...beep...beep...", pay attention to it:  Some
    less obvious enemy out to hunt you down -- usually sharks and enemy planes.  The
    sharks aren't that much a problem, since they only appear in the "Race to the
    Finish" levels.  One shot transforms them into sushi.
         The drone planes, however, will in find a way into just about every level
    come Stage 9.  When they appear, they'll fire on you, but only if you're in
    their straight flight path.  Whoever's controlling them is a bit too dim to move
    in an S shape, so you can easily move out of their way and avoid their bullets. 
    Or you can just shoot 'em down; one shot's all you need.
    ==========================={ TROUBLE ON TERRA FIRMA }===========================
    Not only are there pesky little nuisances in the air and in the sea, the enemy's
    implanted guns on land.  Most of which are red, domed turrets that fire off
    simple bullets.  Less common are white, box-shaped missile launchers; the
    missiles will disable all the CCSB's features should they hit, but that'll only
    happen if you stay in one place for too long.
     _____/A.  RACE TO THE FINISH\_________________________________________________
    This is the first stage you'll get to cruise around in.  In these stages, your
    goal is to find the level's finish line (a series of dashes) within a preset
    time limit.
         If you want to get a leg up on the game, stay in the first level for a few
    minutes and spend a few lives stocking up on pods, so you can upgrade your ship.
     Don't worry about seeing the dreaded "game over" message; there's a 1-up not
    too far in this level.  Thus, you can easily improve your ship for later levels.
         Stage 9 presents the first use of ramps.  IF your boat's fast enough, you
    can use these ramps to find some nice shortcuts along the way; if not, you'll
    fall onto terra firma with your boat as a tombstone.  Using ramps may seem novel
    early on, but come stage 14, using these lifts becomes mandatory.
         One final thing before moving on:  Halfway through stages 1 and 9, there'll
    be a T-shaped intersection.  The route taken determines which order the
    following levels are presented.  For example, taking the left path in Stage 1
    will lead you to pod collection course, while going to the right leads you to a
    mine disposal scenario.
    =================================={ SCORING }===================================
       - Shooting down an enemy boat:............      50 pts.
       - Each pod collected:.....................     100 pts.
       - Destroying a gun turret:................     500 pts.
       - Slamming an enemy boat into a wall:.....   2,000 pts.
       - Jumping off a ramp AND landing in water:  10,000 pts.
            (This becomes mandatory come stage 14.)
     _____/B.  COLLECT PODS\_______________________________________________________
    The only thing you have to do here is... well... collect pods.  Also spread
    about this path are question marks, which can add pods, points, or extra lives;
    they can also spring traps -- either vaporizing nearby items, or worse, causing
    damage to your boat upon impact.  Other hazards to keep an eye on are the
    occasional wave of energy, and bombs that appear in the second version of this
    =================================={ SCORING }===================================
       - Each pod collected:    250 pts.
       - Random bonus:......  5,000 pts.
     _____/C.  DISPOSE OF MINES\___________________________________________________
    Time to have fun with explosives, folks!  What you need to do here is take mines
    from one end of the river and drop them off in a disposal bin on the opposite
         Not only are these waters guarded with gun turrets perched on land, enemy
    boats are on patrol.  Once you grab a mine, these craft will follow you like a
    mouse to cheese.  Get tagged, the offending boat will steal that mine, and tow
    it back to where the original storage unit.  Tag the offending boat before the
    mine is returned, you'll steal the mine back; if you can't quite reach it, then
    just go back and grab another mine to haul to the disposal unit.
         How best to avoid getting tagged by the enemy?  Swerve around; don't drive
    in a straight line.  The opposition may be faster than you, but when it comes to
    cornering, your CCSB has the edge... and that's not supposed to be a pun.
       - The first time you play this level, you'll have a minute to clear four
         mines guarded by a single enemy boat.
       - The second time you're assigned to mine disposal, you've got ninety seconds
         to clear five mines.  This time, you've got two boats chasing you.
       - Third time you arrive, it's the same scenario as above, but there's a
         whirlpool now circling the disposal bin!
    One other piece of information:  You do NOT want to be in the disposal bin when-
    ever a mines detonates.  If that happens, your boat goes "BOOM!"
    =================================={ SCORING }===================================
       - Each gun turret destroyed:    500 pts.
       - Eliminating a mine:.......  1,000 pts.
     _____/D.  GUARD THE PEOPLE\___________________________________________________
    Uh-oh.  Looks like some poor souls got stranded in these waters... and enemy
    forces would love to use these guys for some sinister purpose; whatever it is, I
    do not know, nor do I care.  Seeing as how you've been unwittingly relegated to
    lifeguard duty, you might as well protect these guys until help arrives...
         You start this level with eight potential victims treading water.  Enemy
    boats will arrive en masse in an effort to smuggle them into a subterranean lair
    (for something).  These craft can't defend themselves, so you can easily pour on
    the bullets... which, coincidentally, won't harm the folks you're trying to
         UFOs are another threat that will appear.  Despite having no need for the
    humans, they're here to give you hell.  UFOs fire paralyzing homing missiles,
    rendering you immobile for about three seconds if you're hit... and unable to
    fire off your weapons.  Fortunately, one shot send them crashing into the water.
         To complete this level, at least one person must survive the ordeal when
    the countdown timer hits zero... though having more people around will reap
    greater rewards.  Should all eight people be abducted, you'll have to start the
    whole thing over again, one life poorer.
    =================================={ SCORING }===================================
      - Recovering a victim from an enemy craft:....  250 pts.
      - Having all eight men safe when time expires:  EXTRA LIFE!
      - Men remaining when you complete the level:..  See table.
      __________________________      __________________________
    +-------+-----------------+     +-------+-----------------+
    | One   |    100          |     | Five  | +1,500 =  3,300 |
    | Two   |   +200 =    300 |     | Six   | +2,000 =  5,300 |
    | Three |   +500 =    800 |     | Seven | +5,000 = 10,300 |
    | Four  | +1,000 =  1,800 |     | Eight | +7,500 = 17,800 |
    +-------------------------+     +-------------------------+
     _____/E.  REACH THE FINISH\___________________________________________________
    Like a salmon who's ready to spawn, you'll be travelling upstream through this
    miniature obstacle course.
       - Your first test is navigating through a log jam with whirlpools.  Not too
       - Second time you come to this stage, you've now go icebergs to contend with.
         Because they rise up from underwater, you'll see rings cascading where
         they're going to pop up.
       - Third time you appear on this obstacle course... what you face is based on
         what road you'd taken when the water splits off in Stage 9...
            > If you broke left, it's an iceberg level; the icy objects will start
              moving at you when they rise from the water.  You've got ninety
              seconds to complete this course.
            > If you broke right, you're going through another log jam.  The wood
              now moves at an angle and the whirlpools are even faster than before.
              What's more, you don't have much time to plot a course -- you've got
              a mere fifty seconds to cross the finish line.
    =================================={ SCORING }===================================
      - Each gun turret destroyed:  500 pts.
     _____/F.  JUMP THE WATERFALL\_________________________________________________
    It's the thrill of cheating death over Niagara Falls... without having to
    actually risk life, limb, or a $250,000 power boat.  Your controller, on the
    other hand...
         The only possible way to jump over the falls -- and avoid descending into
    the Pit of Mysterious Death (TM) -- is to utilize the ramps where water meets
    gravity.  To make things more challenging, most ramps sweep from side to side,
    parallel to the edge of the water.  Worse yet, whirlpools occupy these rapids,
    and will seriously screw you up if you're careless.
         To clear each waterfall, you'll have to gain enough speed, hit the ramps as
    squarely as possible, and land on the flat area of water on the opposite side of
    the chasm.  If only the front half of your boat makes it and the rear half's
    hanging off the edge, that ain'na gonna work -- you'll simply fall, crash, arise
    as a puff of smoke, and respawn to the ledge you just jumped from.  And I
    shouldn't even need to mention what happens if you miss the ramp entirely.
         My only advice here is to be patient.  Be aware of which direction the
    water flows, and don't allow it the opportunity to push you into the Pit of
    Mysterious Death (TM).
    =================================={ SCORING }===================================
      - Racing to the edge of a waterfall, hanging on, and
        safely returning onto the river:......................    100 pts.  (Cheap!)
      - Each gun turret destroyed:............................    500 pts.
      - Jumping a waterfall and maintaining speed as you land:  2,000 pts.  
     _____/G.  FRY THE MONSTER\____________________________________________________
    OH, JOY!  BOSS STAGES!  What good would this game be without boss stages?
       - Stage 5 is your first boss encounter -- a sea serpent.  He'll spit some
         nasty stuff your way, as well as use its tail when you get too close.
         Avoid them, as it'll only take four of his attacks to sink your ship.
       - Stage 10 pits you against a giant crab, which will usually spit out bul-
         lets at you, but will occasionally flail its claws.  I'd worry less about
         about his saliva and more on avoiding physical contact.
       - Reach Stage 17, and you'll combat a giant squid.  The key to winning
         against this beast is in avoiding his tentacles. He won't bat you around as
         a cat would a ball of yarn; he'll just wrap his appendage around your boat,
         pull it underwater, and you simply die, defenseless.
    If you're stuck with a controller that lacks auto-fire feature, then you'd
    better start hammering away at that (A) button when you see "Fry the Monster"
    atop the screen.  If you're lucky, the CCSB will fire off a couple shots,
    dealing damage to the monster before it even gets a chance to strike!  (If
    you're fortunate to have auto-fire, then just hold the (A) button down.  Your
    thumbs and controller will, in a high-pitched voice, thank you.)
         Defeat the monster, and not only have you a tale to tell your grandkids,
    you'll move onto the best level of all...
     _____/H.  SHOOT THE TARGETS\__________________________________________________
    Why'd I save this one for last?  Simple question, simple answer:  You can earn
    lots of points here; this is a simple shooting gallery.  The CCSB's on cruise
    control; all you do here is rotate the boat and fire.  Hit every target in the
    level (even those birdie posts at the turns), and you'll score an extra life.
         The scoring for hitting consecutive targets is as follows (miss one, and
    back to 100 you go!  And no bonus life for you -- too bad!):
      _________________      _________________      _________________
     /TARGET / VALUE  /     /TARGET / VALUE  /     /TARGET / VALUE  /
    +-------+--------+     +-------+--------+     +-------+--------+
    |   1   |    100 |     |  9-10 |  1,500 |     | 19-20 | 10,000 |
    |   2   |    150 |     | 11-12 |  2,000 |     | 21-22 | 15,000 |
    |   3   |    200 |     | 13-14 |  2,500 |     | 23-24 | 20,000 |
    |   4   |    250 |     | 15-16 |  5,000 |     | 25-26 | 25,000 |
    |  5-6  |    500 |     | 17-18 |  7,500 |     | 27-28 | 50,000 |
    |  7-8  |  1,000 |     +----------------+     +----------------+
     /9.  GOT FEEDBACK?\___________________________________________________________
    If you have any submissions, strategies, comments, insults (on second
    thought...), or any other information that might catch my interest, you can
    currently E-mail me at <qxz[^2]verizon[period]net>.  Submissions are subject to
    evaluation, and may be edited, though proper credit will be given.
     /10.  AND FINALLY...\_________________________________________________________
    The obligatory "thank you" section.
       - Rare, Nintendo
            > Developing and releasing the game
                         This guide is (c) 2006 John Isles, iv,
             and may not be published or redistributed without permission.

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