A Chia's Guide to Ice Cream Machine
Hi! I'm Adee the Chia. I live in my dream world in the Ice Cream Machine (or, as the cognoscenti describe it, ICM). After one hundred million plays, I have a vivid first hand perspective on what it takes to master my world. I thought I would share that perspective with other Neopians, in the hope that they can all help keep me safe from the never ending barrage of frozen deliciousness.
1) Stick to first position. Ballerinas start by mastering basic positions. Like a ballerina, the first key to becoming an ICM master is to master the first position, the center cone of the nine on the board. Whenever possible, keep me in first position. Unless a threatening cone comes up the middle, don't move, stay in first position. That will keep me as flexible as possible to grab the goodies that pop up, while leaving me with maximum options to dodge the badness. The center is your friend!
2) Master the moves to second and third position. The ballerinas next master the transitions from first position to second and third position. For the ICM player, second and third position involve moving one row right and left from the first position (center) spot. The move one row right and left should become second nature for you and your mouse controller. Small movements right and left will let you dodge just enough to miss the upcoming center missile, no more and no less. Once the threat in first position has past, you can move back to the center and resume your vigil there.
3) Move as little as possible. The more you move, the more you risk hitting obstacles. Jerking back and forth across the board is the worst possible approach! Stay still, like a noil waiting for prey, moving only when necessary. The less you move, the higher you score (or, if you are a noil, the more you eat). Good thing noils don't like ice cream!
4) Speed makes you faster. Those pluses that speed up the game? They are your friends! Trust me – as you move up to the levels for double chocolate, rainbowberry and beyond, you will need to be able to move like a Kougra to avoid those rogue cones, not some slothful Chia. The best way to practice for the fast higher levels is to speed up the game early using the green pluses available during the lower levels to simulate that speed. Each plus speeds the game up as fast as two or three levels beyond your current one. You may get hurt more in the short term, but it will make you better prepared for that high score as you practice. No pain, no gain!
5) Bombs are your friend. I hear some players ask "Why bother with the strawberry bomb? It just slows me down, and keeps me from finishing the level." The answer: high scores come from getting lots of cherry and fish awards that rack up the points, plus extra lives that extend the game. The best way to boost your score is to have more chances to get those bonus points. The best way to get more chances is to use those bombs to reset the level, clearing away mundane cones and giving an extra chance on the lower levels to get the bonus points. Why, just the other day I saw a player sneak into avatar range by using a bomb to get one more reset, and seeing their final scoop on the chocolate level and collect a fish pop for an extra 250 points that made all the difference.
6) Strawberryvanillachocolate. It's my favorite flavor of ice cream. (what did you think it would be, Tigersquash? Yuck! Who thought that was a good idea?) When you get to that level, type it in to make me happy. I will make you happy in return, I promise!
7) Patience has its rewards. The best players always wait at least three minutes to start their games. That's because after that interval Oliver, the Phantom Orange Shirt Guy, takes over my body between stages and is available to do tricks on the screen. I love it when players make him do back flips! For very fortunate and patient players, Oliver even appears during the game, good for a one thousand point bonus scoop. That's worth waiting for! I also find that players who wait for Oliver tend to get more good luck with bonus points and extra lives throughout the game. This may just be a rumor, but why not show a little patience and see if some goodness flows into your ICM life?
8) Go big or go home. Trust me, no Chia likes to be played in regular mode. Get used to using me in large or even better extra large game mode. You will have better control over my movements, and better be able to avoid those nasty cones. Chias like to be big, are born to be big. Don't keep me tiny! Even better, in the early rounds practice by making me big on the screen – embrace those big blue Chias and work on dodging with a smaller margin of error to be sharper in the later rounds.
9) Go low and don't be slow! The best players practice by keeping me very low, below the second line, during the early levels of the game. That forces them (me) to react quickly and instinctively to obstacles, simulating the experience of having to stay safe later in the game when the cones come fast and furious. Again, remembering that the best preparation for those rainbowberry levels is simulating that experience earlier in the game, use your practice time keeping me very low in the game, very close to those cones, reacting at a hair trigger when to get used to what it will be like as you get later in the game.
10) Count slowly to five. Stone shield is a great tool, it gives you five seconds of freedom from death by ice cream. When you collect one, you need to get in the habit of counting one thousand one, one thousand two up to five in your head – that will let you know when you need to be focused on dodging those cones again instead of not worrying about them.
I would like everyone to get my avatar, and I hope this Chia-based point of view helps you master the game and collect it!
Love, xoxo, Adee