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Ice Cream Dodging is Not For the Faint of Heart


by lack_luster

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GAMES ROOM - Never has the beloved pastime of dodging speedy items been more prevalent than in one of Neopia's most popular games- the underground sport of evading blobs of ice cream.

Until recently, it was largely ignored by the greater public, soon ushered into the mainstream and accepted by the veritable A-List of Neopian Upper Crust.

Though some consider the movement a 'sell-out', it's no great surprise that Ice Cream dodging, particularly in the widely played Ice Cream Machine, has found such great success among a population eager for something new and different.

To be sure, it's no easy task; flying frozen frenetic blobs are certainly unpredictable, and there have been accidents. Some have lost -several- lives, dedicating time and effort unsurpassed to win titles and trophies that many could only dream of.

In short, the fine art of dodging can make either a hero or a pancake out of those who dare to risk life and limb for the timeless fame it may bring them.

While the origin itself has yet to be discovered, it is rumored that the sport dates back to the early ice age, in the glacial regions of Terror Mountain. Some claim the ancients who dwell in frozen caves developed and honed their skills as survival tactics to avoid avalanches, while others are adamant that it was simply always a game. Now, centuries later, it has found new life in the modern world of Extreme challenges, spurning interest in the youngsters of the modern generation.

There are, as in so many other sports, strategies and movements to get ahead. The rules are simple in and of themselves, but each turn and twist within the 13 levels is a learning experience, and some more than others learn to embrace techniques to better themselves.

Brief Overview:

The ins and outs of Ice Cream Machine are rather simple to learn. Certain power-ups reap bountiful benefits, while others can wreak havoc on the players.

Speed Changing Power-ups:

The objective of the game is simple enough, and altering the speed of the game can often be problematic. Slowing the screen, with the use of a bright red ‘-’ blob, can cause crowding throughout. Crowding may result in rows upon rows of inescapable ice cream scoops, impossible to dodge. On the opposite side of the spectrum, bright green ‘+‘ blobs have an inverse effect of the screen, causing scoops to shoot out at higher velocities. The additional speed may result in clouded vision, and throw reaction time for a loop. Generally, unless unavoidable, these blobs should not be utilized without the aid of Size Changing Scoops.

Size Changing Scoops:

Through some unknown magic, silhouetted ice cream scoops may have one of two effects; a large increase in size, or quite the opposite. Increasing mass is undesirable. Have you, after all, ever seen a fat Chia walk off with a trophy?

PAH! Preposterous.

Rather, these size-increase scoops should too be used with utmost caution.

Instead, opt for the minimizing scoops, which provide some dexterity.

Bonus Scoops:

While both speed and size altering is well and good, it’s the bonus scoop that will ultimately decide the winner.

The Cherry bonus, worth 100 points, is fairly common. Collected throughout the 13 levels of peril, Cherry bonuses can provide the upper hand to advance a player throughout the game. Unlike other powerups, bonuses provide that little extra edge over competitors.

However, useful as they may be, Cherry bonuses pale in comparison to the mother of all bonuses; the Fish Bonus. Highly sought after, but rarely stumbled on, Fish Bonuses, as with their brothers the Fish Negg in Meerca Chase, can be a highly decisive factor in a victory or defeat. At 250 points a piece, Fish Neggs prove evasive and troublesome, often flying by without detection, until the opportunity has been lost.

While it has yet to be determined WHY Fish magic is so powerful, no matter the game… Fish are generally responsible for a large-scale win.

Strawberry Bomb:

Avoid, unless you are in a rather tight spot, generally within the last 3 or so levels. These clear the screen completely of scoops, but don’t give credit for the required number of scoops for the level. Hence, utilized only when you’re otherwise doing fine, the purpose is defeated. These can, however, save you some serious freezer-burn when the crowding begins.

Shield:

A temporary invincibility booster, which allows you to pummel through as many scoops as you so please, generally helpful to collect stray bonuses and those distant Extra Lives across the board. When the shield begins to run out, it turns red briefly, before vanishing entirely.

Extra Lives:

Looking for a second chance? A third? A tenth?

To keep from sure elimination, be sure to keep on the lookout for Pink Heart scoops, each lending that extra something to keep on keepin’ on.

The more collected? The larger the chance of reaching those last few stretches, from the Vanilla challenge all of the way up to Garlicky Bratwurst.

A competition with bonuses is dandy, but is nothing without Extra Lives.

Skill:

Not a bonus, you say? Well, I say NAY to such accusations. Certainly, it is a bonus to have natural ability. Sure, talent isn’t everything, but it helps to have navigational skills and a quick reaction time. Have you found yourself losing time and time again? Perhaps it’s time to reconsider your Extreme sport. Potato Counter, anyone?

Of course, the best player is little without gads of practice. Minutes, hours… time flies while one learns the fine art of dodging. Sure, it’s fun at first. But training for those high scores can be grueling. It is as much the fans as the rewards which make such training so worthwhile. As the center of attention, many of the more learned, honored players have found solace in the hordes of screaming groupies. Soon, this repetition because just another daily routine, with fun as the foundation over fortune.

Enthralling and entrapping, Ice Cream Machine has proven a lasting facet on the sporting market; one which, unless a lawsuit threatens the dangerous practice, will likely spread through this world and the next, a testament to the ancients who saw something special in the evasion of something OTHER than taxes.

 
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