SPACE INVADERS PART II
The title screens of Midway's licensed version and the original Taito version.
Almost everything that applies to Space Invaders is valid for Part II and only the differences will be covered on this page. For basic tactics and high scoring techniques, please refer to Space Invaders info, tips & tactics.
30 point 'pulsar' - two of these appear when a 20 point 'splitter' is shot
Flashing spaceship. Worth 200 points in Midway's version of the game and 500 in Taito's
The base shelters now display the screen number
Dangers and new features
The mystery ship and the flashing ships are capable of dropping replacement 30 point invaders to fill in any gaps in the top row! This is obviously a deliberate retaliation aimed at players using the 'wall of death' technique. It is usually little more than a way of gaining a few hundred extra points and rarely causes problems unless the arrival of a new 30 pointer causes the invaders to suddenly drop down a row. Take solace in the fact that this is evidence even the manufacturers are aware of the advantage of using the 'wall of death' method.
From screen 2 onwards in the Midway version and screen 4 onwards in Taito's, the formation begins with only 52 invaders and includes gaps and the introduction of two new types of invader, the 'splitter' 20 pointer which looks like a regular 20 pointer but splits into two 'pulsars' when shot and the 'pulsar', a spherical 30 pointer that pulses in time to the game's 'heartbeat'.
There is now a second type of ship that occasionally flies across the top of the screen. It flashes and can only be hit when it is visible. Worth 500 points in Taito's version of the game and only 200 in the version produced by Midway under license from Taito. It appears instead of the second mystery ship on every screen.
Basic techniques and game fundamentals are the same as for Space Invaders. New techniques and methods of scoring bonus points will be covered in the tricks and tactics section below.
Part II has a high score that can accommodate up to 99,990 points instead of the 9,990 of the original game. There is also the feature of being able to enter 10 characters when you beat the high score. The default high score is usually 5000 and the name is automatically set to the manufacturer's name, although there is a facility for the operator to set the score to a different value and and set the name to whatever they like when they switch the machine on.The Ultimate Space Invader Part II tricks and tactics New ways to score!
Bonus points can be scored by shooting one of the large 10 point invaders last. If the bottom invader from the row on the left is shot last the player earns 1000 points. Any other 10 point invader shot last is worth 500 points. This initially seems to be a fantastic bonus, but is only really feasible up to screen 3 and achieving it on that screen is a feat worthy of respect!
The way to do it is to quickly clear the screen, leaving one complete column on its own. By firing slightly (very, very slightly!) ahead of the column it is possible to hit the invaders above the 10 pointers and as the column accelerates every time one of them is shot it is not actually that difficult to leave a 10 pointer until last.
When you shoot the last invader the game displays a 'colorful' display that has always been described as a rainbow but more closely resembles a fountain and your bonus points are awarded depending on which 10 pointer you hit last. It is interesting to note that when you score 500 points there is a gap between the word BONUS and the points awarded, almost as if the programmers were hinting there was a larger bonus available.
Setting up the 'shoot the 10 pointer last' rainbow bonus on screen 1
The 'fence' trail left by the last 10 pointer
Taito's colorful rainbow and 500 point bonus (note the gap between BONUS and 500)
The Midway version of the 500 point rainbow bonus and...
... that elusive 1000 point rainbow bonus
The new flashing spaceship
The flashing ship is worth a fixed point value but this value depends on which version of the game you are playing. In the Taito version the flashing ship is worth 500 points. The Midway version allocates a score of only 200 points for the flashing ship. I suggest that if you intend contributing high scores to my high-score page you use the Taito version! This may be slightly counterbalanced by the earlier screen change in the Midway version - see below.
The flashing ship is hard to hit and only timing and practice will allow you to consistently hit it. That or a lot of luck. Waiting at the edge for it is not the best way to hit it, as the flashes seem to be timed to make hitting it at these points almost impossible. The flashing ship also makes a different sound from the regular mystery ship.
Splitters and pulsars
From screen 2 onwards in the Midway version (screen 4 in Taito's) there are only 52 invaders on the screen to begin with. All of the medium 20 pointers have the ability to split in two when they are shot, creating a pair of round, pulsing 30 point invaders. Not including the pulsars, the screen is worth 1110 points. There are a possible 14 pulsars and therefore a further 420 points available, but if a splitter splits into another splitter (they split left to right) only three pulsars will be created, not four! To get maximum pulsar points, shoot the splitters from right to left.
The new screen formation (Midway). Note the gaps, placement of 20 point invaders and large number of 30 point invaders.
The mystery and flashing ships have the ability to drop reinforcement 30 point invaders into gaps in the top row. This can cause problems when the wall of death technique is being use, as they can fill in the 'safe place' and also cause the rows to drop quickly if they are dropped at the end of a row.
That is really all I can tell you about Space Invaders Part II. If you want to play it right now, you had better check out the emulator page and the downloads page.