CFTBL: Tactics and Strategies

Zaphod77

Active member
Feb 14, 2013
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My advice.

1) every ball that trickles out fo the bumpers can be trapped on the right flipper. ALWAYS DO THIS.
2) Shoot snackbar from right flipper trap. anything else is asking to drain.
3) You can transfer the ball to the other fliper by backhanding a ramp from a trap. this works on either side.
4) ignore the right ramp except when you need to shoot that slide. Then backhanded it, and make a shot on the run. This is actually where you will drain most. trying to hit that slide.
5) kiss shot is easier after shooting the left ramp.


First order of business. plunge for the full kiss.

Second go for the snackbar. Shoot the LEFT menu targets. these are totally safe to shot for as the ball will go up the left ramp. Once they are lit, max the double feature combo then shoot the center lane. when the ball comes back, trap it and shot the snackbar. repeat.

If you get the paid lanes early, don't fret. you still may get the sequential F L I M bonus (chuckle).

Finally that darn slide. if you are feeling dangerous, backhand it out of the bumpers. this sometimes works. If not, trap it, backhand the right ramp then shoot for it. Or post pass it over to the left flipper. whichever works for you.

Now shoot left ramp, then kiss to start multiball. you WANT to start it with kiss. this lets you start working on the creature ramp right away.

After you max that, you can shoot the tunnels. hopefulyl it won't be the slide.

Now just collect the Jackpot, shoot the bumpers, then collect the SJ. pretty simple. Repeat.

After you have gotten a jackpot, multiball becomes harder to start. you get no free full KISS. just ONE letter per plunge. start going for the paid lanes instead. You want to keep boosting that jackpot. Also the game stops giving you free blue target hits for shooting the snackbar. Use the jets to rotate the unlit ones to the left, then aim for them there. the ones on the right are a deathtrap, and should only be shot for when you still have ballsaver. Just be patient. eventually you will relight the snackbar. And you will raise the jackpot a lot by doing so.

Move your CAR IS worth it. It's not too hard to go for. just trap the ball out of the bumpers, and aim to kick it back up there. if you really want to play conservative, trap, shoot left ramp then shoot center lane. ANd again, you get the bumper hits, to raise your jackpot.

If you happen to start unlimited millions, it's worth playing through, as you should be able to get it up to at least 21 million. the ramp is EASY, and you will get close to or over 100 million. Big millions is risky, because the right ramp is much more dangerous if you miss it. You CAN often trap after shooting it though. If you get the shot down to where you can hit it a large amount of the time, it might be worth it to risk big millions.

But yeah, 4x super jackpot is where the points are at. Play it safe until you get a large jackpot value, then go for multiball. The double feature combo is very easy. so just keep shooting it over and over and over until you got a large jackpot.

How the good folks at TPA can make this table tougher.

1) set the slingshots on a hair trigger. this will stop you from trapping balls trickling out of the bumpers.
2) make the left menu targets bouncier. this will make the left ramp a wee bit more dangerous.
 
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neglectoid

New member
Sep 27, 2012
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i just started playing this table during the tournament . my 2 cents for this thread are ....
after a full plunge of the ball i hold up my left flipper , when the ball makes contact with it i give a hard up nudge which sometimes ends up going into the kiss hole.
during multiball, while grinding the whirlpool .... when the ball enters the metal habitrail, from the plastic habitrail, i give a hard up nudge which gives the ball a little more speed and sometimes lights up an extra letter for creature .

it has been said that you should always collect the snackbar before starting multiball. why exactly should i be doing this?
 

neglectoid

New member
Sep 27, 2012
845
0
i just started playing this table during the tournament . my 2 cents for this thread are ....
after a full plunge of the ball i hold up my left flipper , when the ball makes contact with it i give a hard up nudge which sometimes ends up going into the kiss hole.
during multiball, while grinding the whirlpool .... when the ball enters the metal habitrail, from the plastic habitrail, i give a hard up nudge which gives the ball a little more speed and sometimes lights up an extra letter for creature .

it has been said that you should always collect the snackbar before starting multiball. why exactly should i be doing this?
 

superballs

New member
Apr 12, 2012
2,651
2
i just started playing this table during the tournament . my 2 cents for this thread are ....
after a full plunge of the ball i hold up my left flipper , when the ball makes contact with it i give a hard up nudge which sometimes ends up going into the kiss hole.
during multiball, while grinding the whirlpool .... when the ball enters the metal habitrail, from the plastic habitrail, i give a hard up nudge which gives the ball a little more speed and sometimes lights up an extra letter for creature .

it has been said that you should always collect the snackbar before starting multiball. why exactly should i be doing this?

If you shoot the snack bar it spots you a snack bar target. If you don't collect the snack bar once before starting multiball, it will not spot those targets after multiball making it harder to collect the I again, it will just award the snack bar score.

If you time your plunge at full strength with kiss empty, so that you plunge when the 2nd St is lit you will light kiss on the plunge.

Also. If you start multiball with the slide, plunge into the rollovers and catch the released ball with the left flipper and the ball from the bumpers will be an easy catch. If you start it with the kiss lock (or restart with snack bar) then use a full strength plunge and make sure you shoot the ball released to the right flipper straight away to the left ramp into the whirlpool.
 

Zaphod77

Active member
Feb 14, 2013
1,309
1
I prefer to start multiball with the kiss shot, and plunge into the bumpers. this way you can shoot the ball coming out of the VUK up the ramp immediately (an easy shot) and catch the ball coming out of the bumpers, and shoot IT up the ramp too (also an easy shot). then just keep pounding them up the ramp until you are maxed. shoot one into the bumpers and the other into kiss. have fun. :)

when you need a ball trapped on the right flipper, shoot the center lane, post pass from the left, or backhand the left ramp and THEN shoot the center lane as appropriate.

The bumpers are the friendliest ever, and always a good place to dump the ball on CFTBL.

yeah releasing the plunge the instant the bottom kiss lights gets you from 0 to full.
if one is lit, plunge the instant it's full instead.
for two it's the third light
if three are lit, well that' s pretty hard to mess up. :)

And i double checked just now. what actually disqualifies easy multiball start (snackbar spots targets, kiss skill shot can give full instead of one only) is collecting a jackpot. not collecting the snackbar has nothing to do with it. first any lit snackbars will be collected one shot at a time, then it will start spotting targets for you. So don't worry too much about collecting the snackbar, though if you have a trap on the right flipper it's usually worth it.
 
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vikingerik

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Nov 6, 2013
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I put up 80 billion last night, good for #4 on the leaderboard. Here's some tips for the high end of strategy on Creature.

The jackpot permanently doubles when you collect a super, but with limits. Three doublings is the most I've ever been allowed, and occasionally only two. I think it depends on the jackpot value and I think the doubling is allowed only while the base is under 400M. (I definitely saw a 380M double and a 450M fail to double.) So if you're aiming at the high end of the leaderboard, it's best to work on raising the jackpot for a little while before starting to collect them, to get more value out of the limited number of doublings. Bring it to about 90M, so that the three doublings will go 180-360-720M. This doesn't take long at the start of a game, maybe 15 shots up the center lane in all, which of course are very easy on each catch out of the bumpers.

The score multiplier has some subtle behavior not fully documented here. We covered the fact that if you reach 4x, you can't raise above 1x on subsequent multiballs for the rest of the ball. But it appears that 2x and 3x actually carry over. The display is bugged and will say 1x, but when you raise it again, you'll increase to the next higher value than you had on the previous multiball. So overall I'm of the mind that leaving the multiplier at 3x is correct to avoid those gimped multiballs with no multiplying allowed.

Finally, rollover detection. TPA has some problems detecting rollovers when extremely large jackpots are involved. I had a previous game that I think should have been 57B but TPA only registered 37B. My 80B game all registered correctly which I experimented with manipulating. With TPA's rollover detection, I think you're always safe as long as you're rolling FROM a 9 in the billions digit or TO a 0 in the billions digit. But something like rolling from 8B to 4B by collecting a jackpot worth six billion can go undetected. You can help this work correctly by carefully controlling the jackpot multiplier. If you're at 8B with the jackpot at 1B, push the multiplier only to 2x before collecting it so you get a clean detectable rollover. Don't collect a super at 3x or 4x if it will make a massive leap beyond a rollover mark that TPA may not detect. Or if you're close to a rollover during multiball, shoot Creature letters or Movie Madness until you get it. So I often tried to pass each rollover threshold with a small score or single jackpot, then collect a massive 3x or 4x super while the entire value would count without rolling over.

BTW, I can't make Movie Madness work for any significant points. The return feed is too fast and I never get more than 3-4 shots before missing which is highly dangerous in losing control. You'd need nearly 100 shots to get to samtny's 350M per shot and I don't know how to safely do that. Stick to the well known railroad to grind the center lane for jackpots.
 

Zaphod77

Active member
Feb 14, 2013
1,309
1
BTW, any award that doesn't mention a pinball feature or food item (like Hula Hoop or New Car) is never awarded.

Don't forget flipper awards. You can choke the fast food guy by flipping a couple times with both flippers when he hands you your food. Doing the same right when the snackbar opens blows it up and awards you "NO BAD FOOD" (chuckle). Seems the designers knew the food items were annoying. :)
 

Zaphod77

Active member
Feb 14, 2013
1,309
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As for dealing with gimped multiballs, simply collect a KISS extra ball or two then drain before starting the next one. Go infinite.
 

vikingerik

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Nov 6, 2013
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I tried that, but I hate that KISS shot. The flipper angle is weirdly wrong for it. Can't hit it consistently from either a trap or on the fly, well under 50% either way. And bricking the wrong way is instant death into the left outlane. I can go infinite on many tables but not this one, I can't hit that 16 times before draining.

Just clarifying on the score multiplier: It carries over but only after you raise it again on the subsequent multiball. So if you get 3x and drain out of multiball, then the next multiball will start at 1x but then jump all the way to 4x on completing Creature. So I think the best strategy here is to go to 3x on the first multiball of a ball, then on subsequent multiballs leave it alone at 1x until you're about to collect the super jackpot, then it can be quickly raised to 4x.
 

Zaphod77

Active member
Feb 14, 2013
1,309
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So brick it the other way. it goes up the ramp instead, and you can just try again, and again, and again... i've gotten 30+ kisses in a game. that shot is VERY makable with practice. Try changing your camera angle.

It's that !@$@ slide that is the one that trips me up.

Just tested again. i Got to 4 extra balls stacked on ball one before I drained. Creature is almost as easy to go infinite on as EatPM on versions that let you stack four extra balls.

Plunge for first kiss. keep shooting kiss til an extra ball lights. shoot center lane. catch ball. shoot ramp or snackbar. resume shooting KISS.

In fact i've NEVER drained off a brick from the kiss shot. ever. I use second lowest camera angle, and I'm on PC. Once you drain out of your first 4X multiball, if you aren't stacked up to four, shoot kiss until you are, then drain. I suggest shooting the menu targets to drain, as you make progress on the next multiball that way. :) When it says X kisses for 5 million, then you know you are maxed on stacked extra balls.
 
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vikingerik

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Nov 6, 2013
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I practiced a bit more. I can hit the KISS shot fairly consistently from the kickout fed by the snackbar and KISS itself, but _only_ that way. I can't hit it consistently from a catch or inexplicably from a left ramp feed, which apparently isn't quite the same motion as the kickout. But yeah I can loop KISS for a while for EBs when necessary.

However now I'm fed up with the table because of TPA's poor rollover detection. I had a game that should have been north of 50B except TPA registered only 12B. It missed _four_ rollovers caused by enormous jackpots. You really do have to babysit the rollover detection by getting the big jackpots only when they won't cause a rollover.
 

vikingerik

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Nov 6, 2013
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As for dealing with gimped multiballs, simply collect a KISS extra ball or two then drain before starting the next one. Go infinite.

Yeah, you're right.

My problem wasn't so much not hitting KISS, as not trying enough in the first place. Instead of pounding KISS like I should, I'd get distracted by the piddly stuff in the combo collect and Move Your Car and Mega Menu and the dozen variants of ramp million modes and all the other junk started by the right ramp and orbit. Once I fixed that leak and focused correctly on KISS, yeah I did go infinite. So check the leaderboard now. :)
 

vikingerik

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Nov 6, 2013
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Another tip: I've reworked the best way to grind for super jackpots.

Shoot the center lane from the left flipper instead of the right. The reason is safety: a miss from the left flipper usually calmly drops back towards the flippers, while a miss from the right flipper is considerably more dangerous. The other reason is that this left flipper shot consistently drops the ball into the leftmost PAID lane, where it has farther to go to exit the bumpers and will rack up a few more bumper hits on average.

This method is safe enough to keep both balls in circulation rather than holding one forever, which really cuts down on the boredom. With each return from the bumpers, just dead pass to the left side and shoot again. You can hold the right flipper immediately after that dead pass to catch the second ball if need be. If both balls are coming out of the bumpers nearly together, dead pass the first and catch the second on the right. But most of the time you can just pass and shoot back up the center lane while the other ball is still in the bumpers so you have both flippers free to recover from a miss.

This really speeds up the super jackpot grinding - you'll get to those 100 and 120 bumper hit levels before you know it.
 

EldarOfSuburbia

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Feb 8, 2014
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Well, thanks in part to this thread I finally got that first Super J. Only one, but small steps :)

One thing I did notice: use the F-I-L-M letters right above the flippers as aiming points. It's pretty effective.

It's also noticeable that the TPA version of this table is not nearly as steep as every real-life one I've encountered. I've probably played more different CftBLs than I have TAFs, and they are all steeper. This has three significant effects compared to the TPA table:
1. The KISS shot is usually a lot easier to repeat, because the sweet spot for a moving ball is a bit further up the flipper.
2. The multiplier ramp is very difficult to hit without a clean, strong, shot. No weak shots, definitely no backhands. Missed shots can go STDM and come back fast, because that ramp is steep.
3. The ball tends to stay in the whirlpool longer - usually 6-7 letters. Overall though with how easy the shot is in TPA, it's a lot easier getting the multiplier in TPA.

Also you can nudge the bottom-right corner of the table to keep the ball in the whirlpool for maybe an extra spin or two, and not disturb a cradled ball. You can't really do that safely in TPA.
 

Zaphod77

Active member
Feb 14, 2013
1,309
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Yeah that fact is well known about creature. if the ramp is hard to make because the slope is jacked up, it will enter the whirlpool faster and spin more.
 

EldarOfSuburbia

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Feb 8, 2014
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Yeah that fact is well known about creature. if the ramp is hard to make because the slope is jacked up, it will enter the whirlpool faster and spin more.

Every CftBL I've ever played had the slope jacked up. My impression has always been that getting the multiplier to even 2x is supposed to be hard. Hard, clean, shots only. Shots that rattle the posts should have difficulty making it up the regular ramp, let alone that back slope to the Creature ramp.
 

Beatnik-Filmstar

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May 10, 2014
38
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I put up 80 billion last night, good for #4 on the leaderboard. Here's some tips for the high end of strategy on Creature.
Finally, rollover detection. TPA has some problems detecting rollovers when extremely large jackpots are involved. I had a previous game that I think should have been 57B but TPA only registered 37B. My 80B game all registered correctly which I experimented with manipulating. With TPA's rollover detection, I think you're always safe as long as you're rolling FROM a 9 in the billions digit or TO a 0 in the billions digit. But something like rolling from 8B to 4B by collecting a jackpot worth six billion can go undetected. You can help this work correctly by carefully controlling the jackpot multiplier. If you're at 8B with the jackpot at 1B, push the multiplier only to 2x before collecting it so you get a clean detectable rollover. Don't collect a super at 3x or 4x if it will make a massive leap beyond a rollover mark that TPA may not detect. Or if you're close to a rollover during multiball, shoot Creature letters or Movie Madness until you get it. So I often tried to pass each rollover threshold with a small score or single jackpot, then collect a massive 3x or 4x super while the entire value would count without rolling over.

Pay attention to this. Just had what should have been a 33.8 billion game good for 24th place show up as 13.8 instead - 90th place. Not quite the same.

Oh well.
 

Zaphod77

Active member
Feb 14, 2013
1,309
1
Oh my word!

Now it's no fun at all. it's actually harder then pinball fx now!

and getting omg stupidly wide angel shots at times. shots from middle of left flipper or even earlier going into KISS sometimes?!?!
 

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