How Else Would I Start The Year?

It’s the beginning of a new year, and three days from the start of Awesome Games Done Quick 2020. So I’ve got new year traditions and video game speedruns on my mind, which can only mean one thing:

It’s time to play Mega Man X.

I’m sure I mention it every year, but I like for MMX to be the first game I play through every year. I also really want to get myself to a point where I can finish it in under an hour. That said, I haven’t played it in exactly one year, so… I was a little rusty when I did my annual run yesterday.

Before we get into it, I should also note that I play what I like to call the 99% run. Which is to pick up all the upgrades in the game except for the hadouken, because it’s a pain and very slow to get. I don’t dare run any% because I need all those hearts and armor parts. I’m very bad at the final boss fights.

I reset not one minute into my run because I got a little too excited and tried to get a quick kill on the first bee blader, but apparently my mashing technique is much too slow, and I just died. Whoops. Maybe I ought to just try to play quickly instead of very fast.

Things actually got worse on the second attempt. I died to both chill Penguin and Launch Octopus because I was being stupid. I also feel down a hole in Chill Penguin’s stage, but that one was at least partly because of the Switch Pro controller’s mushy d-pad. I was trying to jump over the hole with the ride ride armor, but the game instead had me jump out of the ride armor, which threw me off and I ended up in the hole. It was dumb. Real dumb.

The other really big oops was when I frigged up getting the arm parts in Flame Mammoth’s stage. I thought, oh no big deal I’ll just get them from Zero later. But then I was in Boomer Kuwanger’s stage and I couldn’t charge Shotgun Ice to get to the heart tank, forcing me to replay nearly the whole stage. That was a pretty massive time loss.

I actually got through the Sigma stages pretty cleanly. Bosspider was nicer than ever, and didn’t even throw any babies at me. Then I got killed bu D-Rex because I always get killed by D-Rex. Don’t know why, but I just can’t manage that fight.

By the time I got to the final showdown, I only had 1.5 of four sub tanks full, and decided that I was already over my hour, so I spent three minutes grinding caterpillars for health drops. Then I had the best Velguarder fight of my life, a sloppy Sigma fight, and a halfway decent fight against Wolf Sigma. I only ended up needing two sub tanks, so that’s something to consider for my next run.

My final time came in at 1:07:14. Not a horrible time by any means, but I know I can do better. Four deaths is a lot, and I should have been able to avoid all of them. We’ll see what 2021 brings!


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