CONTRA III: THE ALIEN WARS > CHEATS, ASSISTANCE
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The following codes can be used only in the Japanese version. They have been dummied out in the overseas counterparts; however, ROM hacks have been created where these codes work.
30 Lives: At the title screen, quickly press DOWN, DOWN+RIGHT, RIGHT, START. A confirmatory voice clip will be played. The player should highlight a selection accordingly to use the code for a desired game mode, since the code involves moving down the selections and hitting start. If placed on the 2 Players A selection, entering the code will send the player into the options menu; if done correctly, the lives option should read 30. (NOTE: if the lives option is changed while it reads 30, the code must be re-entered)
Level Select Menu: At the title screen, quickly press DOWN, DOWN-LEFT, LEFT, UP-LEFT, UP, START to access the level select menu in 1 Player mode; quickly press DOWN, DOWN-LEFT, LEFT, START to access the level select menu in 2 Player B mode.
Sound Test Menu: At the title screen, quickly press RIGHT, RIGHT-DOWN, RIGHT, X.
Level Skip: If the player gains a life just after they lose their last life, the screen will fade to black. However, instead of being taken to the Game Over screen, the player will be shown the Level Clear screen, as if they completed the level.
This is because the function that is used to handle the appearance of the Game Over screen is also used for the Level Clear screen after completing a level. What determines whether either screen will be displayed is the player’s remaining lives. Therefore, if the player gains a life as the screen is fading to black, after having lost their last life, the game will check that the remaining lives count is above 0 and proceed to the Level Clear screen, under the assumption that the fade-out was due to defeating the level’s boss.
This glitch is extremely difficult to trigger. The methods requires either a lot of knowledge on the game’s points system, heavy memorization, or heavy guesswork. Ultimately, having predicted when the next defeated enemy will grant an extra life, the player loses their last life immediately after setting off a Bomb. The Bomb will destroy the enemy and grant the player the extra life, triggering the glitch. Note that the use of this glitch on the final stage skips the entire ending sequence, taking the player to the final score screen.
Brain Boss Hitbox Glitch: In the rolling rock phase of the brain boss battle (Normal and Hard difficulties only), the player can lay prone in 2 spots on the screen where they won’t get hit by the rocks, despite them rolling over the player. The first spot, which is the easiest to stay in, is to the far left side of the screen. The second spot, which is more difficult, is immediately next to the brain. Both safe spots, especially the former, make this phase much easier to survive. The latter spot is a favorite among speedrunners as they can inflict significantly more damage in a single round compared to the other phases.
Easy Brain Boss Battle: The coding of the Brain may be glitched. If the player lets the boss battle last a long time, selecting phases without damaging the boss, damage seems to be registered passively. This is evident as the enemy seems to be defeated with much fewer hits in this situation.
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