Blue beam suiciding

Posted July 28th 2019

Associated movies… BCM370

Ow, that stings!

In my 2018 article Top of the first tower I described how you can get yourself hog-launched to the top of the first tower, courtesy of a big pile of plasma grenades created by killing covies when they're at a particular spot. But another thing you can do with such an arrangement is get yourself launched into the tower's blue beam, which will kill you and send you flying. It's fun to do, and quite a novelty of course, and you also get some nice views!

The only real difference in the set-up work (depending on which of the two basic set-up plans you use), is that you'll want to arrange the checkpoint timing so that if you then promptly launch yourself, you'll have several seconds to sail up high and then the beam will fire. Good timing like this will save you having to wait around to launch at the right time. And since it may take quite a few launches per zapping success, that's a good idea.

Oooh, pretty waterfall!

When using the alternative checkpointing plan, which is outlined at the start of BCM370 and which was originally shown more fully in BCM325 in the context of ascending the tower, my suggestion is this, for PAL Xbox. Once you're in position on the hog, still delaying the Pelican arrival checkpoint, wait for the beam to fire, than do 4 or 5 auto-jumps (jump button kept down) then stop. That should be about right. For NTSC/PC I suggest 3 or 4 auto-jumps, to account for the shorter firing period of the beam (about 15 seconds compared to PAL's 18).

Route to the tower

How many plasmas should you go for? I'm not sure what the ideal is, but I got good results with 24 for example. I didn't try to investigate what might be optimal. But in any case, it's not just the number that matters, it's also how concentrated they are. When you launch, quite a few of the plasmas are liable to provide no impulse, because of either going off too late (the plasmas don't all go off at once) or because of getting too far away from the hog.

You can see lots of examples of launching and getting zapped in my dedicated movie BCM370 (which used multiple similar set-ups, created in pursuit of hoping to get a particularly good one). There are also a few examples in my earlier tower ascent movies when I got zapped by accident (one clip in BCM322, two in BCM324, one in BCM325).

It's just one of those days

At the point you get zapped, the camera direction will control the nature of the subsequent death-cam view, lasting up to about four seconds. You might like to play with this. In particular, if you're looking in the direction you're about to get sent flying (something you can anticipate in the last few moments), you then get a nice forward-looking view as your body flies through the air.

Much earlier cyborg zapping

Incidentally, I'm not the first to launch into a blue beam. People were getting zapped years ago, at various towers and with various launch types. I don't know where it started but there's an example in Dark Helmet's old video 'Introducing the "Super long jump"' and also in his co-op video 'Killed by a Blue Beam'. There's also one in a snippet (ontower12.wmv) from Frogblast in his 2002 article On Top of the Blue Beam Tower. And I expect there are other old examples too.