BCM366 - Security shaft speed descents

(7:22) Level 4 ('The Silent Cartographer') on Heroic. After noticing some cushioning you can use when descending the security shaft with PAL Xbox, I started getting into speed descents and found ways of getting faster and faster. Check out how fast I got! The time goes from when you start moving, to when you hit the ground (the holed surface, that is). I'm using the music-free set-up seen created in BCM365.

Released July 8th 2019, gameplay recorded July 3rd-6th 2019.


00:02 (Cushioning demo) To start with here's a demo of how you can cushion yourself when falling from a shelf, potentially eliminating shield damage and motion stun (or sometimes just eliminating motion stun, if you don't quite nail it). Not easy though, and maybe it's even a bit fickle. Here, I foul up on the third one.

00:49 (Basic speed descent) I started putting the cushioning to good use, attempting speed descents. Here I show a couple of failures and a success. In the first failure I mess up the second cushion and I'm down to only two health bars by the time I'm falling to the final platform. That doesn't really matter though, because I miss it anyway! Not enough speed.

01:24 In this second failure I'm overly hasty in trying to reach the second shelf. I catch an edge of the wall (you have to watch out for that) and consequently miss the shelf.

01:43 In this success (which wasn't my first) I actually manage to nail all four cushions, which was fairly unusual. Time: 32.5. I had another example which was slightly faster (32.2), but I wanted to show this one because of the four cushions.

02:19 (Short bounce) In this second phase of my speed descent work I was using an easy short bounce (after a jumping run-off) to save about a second at the start. There's a crouch land on the shelf as you'd expect, because your overshield is gone by then. On this descent there are also a couple of technique improvements you can notice (compared to the last one). I do a more efficient job of heading back to the shelves after getting cushioned, and also the bounce finish saves a bit of time. I was able to go for that because I was still in good enough shape. Time: 30.6, the best I got.

Incidentally, in regard to the opening bounce, you have the option of going for just a glancing blow off the far edge. Done optimally, your overshield takes no damage and you end up on the shelf with only a tiny bit of damage to your underlying shield. Less damage than if you'd done the usual meaty bounce. It's also faster by at least a second. I never recorded any speed descents with this variation though. I only realized the possibility after I was already into the next phase, which involves an even faster start.

02:59 (Direct long bounce) This third phase concerns a much longer and harder bounce I found, taking me all the way to the second shelf. You need to clip that near sharp edge just right. Not so heavy that you lose your overshield - in fact you ideally want it undamaged - but not so light that you don't reach the wall and get sufficiently slowed (note: in the latter case, what generally happens is that you die before you even hit the shelf). In trying to achieve this fine glance, it's very easy to miss the edge altogether, as illustrated in the last of the four demo clips. I did that a whole lot!

03:39 In the first of those demo clips the bounce wiped a lot of my top shield (the green on the HUD), and I consequently ended up with a bleeping shield after landing, which wasn't ideal (see my closing remarks for detail on the workings in regard to damage). In this speed attempt though, I'm left with only a tiny bit of shield damage (that seems to be optimal for this bounce). My second cushion gives me a bit of shield damage but at least no motion stun. There's a further blip when I fail to nail my attempted bounce finish (losing me about a second), but I end up with a time of 24.4. A big improvement as expected - and a new record.

That was the best time I got with this method. I could've got a better one if I'd kept going (the same is also true of the earlier phases), but instead I entered a new phase.

04:13 (Angled long bounce) This fourth phase uses a much easier bounce I found, to reach that second shelf. As seen in the demo clip, you hit a sloping edge then bounce off or slide down a wall. As with the earlier bounce, you mustn't hit too heavy or too light. But achieving that is far easier here because the sloped edge is a much wider target than the sharp edge. In a test, I was able to get around a 50% success rate! A further advantage is that you almost always end up with only a tiny bit of shield damage. In fact, across the hundreds of times I got to the shelf, I only ever noticed one time when that wasn't the case. Things were a lot more variable with the earlier bounce.

04:24 In this successful descent (not my first with this method, but my best up to this point) I do well except for failing the attempted bounce finish. Time: 24.6, very close to that 24.4 obtained a few hours earlier.

05:53 There were a few times when I lucked an extra bounce, landing me on the the third platform. This is my fastest time for when that happened - namely 23.7, a new record. This was about four minutes after the previous clip. When falling to the final platform I go for cushioning because of my poor state. I nail it and go quite neatly into a dismount. A useful technique for such situations.

05:27 Next day I broke that record with this 22.5, without even having got an extra bounce. That was partly thanks to an excellent bounce finish. A glancing bounce, which is ideal though slightly risky to go for.

05:56 (Angled super-long bounce) I could've left things there, and I'd made so many descent attempts by then that it would probably have been medically advisable, but curiosity got the better of me. I thought there was a decent chance something freaky might happen if I kept at it, so I continued on and on with the angled bounce, doing umpteen attempts in which I was trying to bounce off the second shelf. Two comedy clips represent that phase. Suffice to say, there was a lot of dying!

06:18 Finally, something freaky did happen. I got two extra bounces and ended up on the third shelf! Momentarily in shock and thinking "What the heck just happened?", I was a little slow to move. Recognizing my unfocused state, I quickly decided to play safe by going for a simple landing on the next platform, rather than going for a cushion. That lost me a small amount of time but it let me recover my focus. I did go for a bounce finish though, and it was quite decent. Time: 19.9, a new record!

06:45 I was going to end the movie with that, but next day I yet again couldn't resist picking up the controller, to see if I could get that extra double bounce again - or something - and get a better time. This was actually quite useful because I developed a certain amount of feel for how to get a bounce off the second shelf, though it was still hard and usually had poor outcome. I eventually got two descents similar to that last one. The first time was only 21.6 but the second was 18.9, shown here. That's my current record. Something to note: after hitting the third shelf, my remaining normal shield was undamaged. Nice!

Closing remarks The cushioning provided by those thin slopes is something I already knew about when I was recording for the last movie, but I didn't include it there. I was just covering the basics.

In regard to the actual speed descent clips which form most of the movie after the cushioning demo, those are almost all in chronological order, reflecting my progress across July 3rd-5th. The only exceptions are the two relatively minor clips representing the "Kept on going" phase, which were actually from shortly after the "Until finally…" clip (they were two of my favourites for comedy, out of the failure clips I kept). The six demo clips (the opening, the clips introducing the direct long bounce, and the clip introducing the angled long bounce) are essentially separate, and were just recorded here and there as I built up and modified the movie.

A note on the direct long bounce. When you hit the shelf and survive, the impact damage usually seems to amount to just over two layers of shielding (there's green, red, and the underlying blue, as far as the HUD goes). Accordingly, if you hit with your overshield still undamaged, you end up with just a minor loss to your underlying normal shield, leaving you in good shape for continuing. But if you arrive with say half of the green gone, you're going to end up with just over half of your normal shield gone, which isn't good news. If you arrive with only the red intact, the impact will eat into your health.

Perhaps I'll return to this topic to see if I can go even faster. I'd also like to try to get the best time I can for the basic descent method (no bounce trick at the start), and perhaps others. But for now, I think I've earned a good lie down!