GregDeg's Feed

08-25-2017 at 06:20 AM
Rating: 2 votes, 5.00 average.

Dragster Tutorial

Dragster’s popularity has recently gathered momentum. With more players playing the game, I thought I’d share some of my techniques I developed over the last two years.

There are several ways to play Dragster. This tutorial only shows how I played one run. There are several other styles that will work. Hopefully this example will help you improve your game.

At the start of the run hold the joystick to the left.
This is indicated by the “C” on the screen.
The purpose is when you release the joystick, your instantly in 1st gear.
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Watch the countdown. 3.. 2.. and when it gets to 1, give it gas. You’re not going to let up until the very end. More on that later.
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Now timing is involved. Release the joystick when the timer starts.
Watch the tach. It should be somewhere in the center.
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Now release the joystick. You’re in 1st.
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Here you have two options.
Shift into 2nd as soon as possible or wait for the tach to reach the mark
circled in red.
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Now I’m in 2nd.
If the tach goes too far, the game will not allow you to shift… blown engine.
I’m in 1st at 0.03 and 2nd at 0.10. This is the fastest possible time to reach 2nd.
Spending more time in 1st (up to 0.50) and 2nd (up to 1.10) will also work.
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Now the tach will drop and then rise to the
same mark. Shift into 3rd.
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The tach will drop and then rise again to that
same point. Shift into 4th.
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Keep your eye on the tach. It will drop below the red zone. The front tire will make contact with the track. This is where you’re going to start shifting multiple times to increase your speed.
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Tap the joystick to the left. In this case five times. The number of shifts may vary. It will depend on the position of the tach. If there’s a chance the engine may blow with one more shift, stop shifting, and allow the dragster to finish the run.

On each shift, the front tire will lift and the dragster will start to skid. The next shift should not occur until the dragster recovers. The recovery is when the front tire makes contact with the track.

Right after the first shift.
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Dragster recovers. Now it’s safe to shift again.
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You’ll need to develop a sense of timing (rhythm) to shift with consistency. Ideally, each shift should be equally placed. This will keep you from shifting before the dragster recovers.

The shifting continued...

1st shift
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2nd shift
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3rd shift
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4th shift
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Fifth and final shift at 3.97.
The tach is near its maximum so shifting for a 6th time will blow the engine.
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The dragster will reach maximum speed around 4.60. Watch the tach and the box
circled in red.
The tach is maxed out when it reaches the far end of the box.
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Here you have two options.

You can release the fire button and let the tach drop.
The dragster will not slow down.
You can coast to the finish with no fear of blowing the engine.

The second option is to listen to the whine of the engine.
When the tach is at its peak, a certain tone is given off.
Listen for the tone, then release the fire button. Watch the tach drop.
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Once it drops, hit the fire button. Watch the tach reach its maximum again.
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Release the fire button again. Repeat the process until the finish.
The tach will disappear when the dragster reaches the finish.
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The full run in real time and in slow motion can be seen here.

This tutorial provides commentary and information on how I play the game. Hopefully I was able to provide some of the basics to get you started. I’ll be glad to answer any of your questions.

ThanksRogerpoco, Siliconian, nads, HugDD, Tfried4048 and 7 others thanked this post
  1. Siliconian's Avatar
    Your tutorial is awesome! Thank You!
    ThanksRogerpoco, GregDeg thanked this post
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  2. Rogerpoco's Avatar
    You had me at "Hello".
    You mentioned this not being the only way, but I was so far off that I'm sure this will help!
    I was missing the very first piece of info you gave, TBH(plus more).

    Thanks, Greg!

    Would be remiss not to thank Barthax as well, lotta keyboard players out there, you guys went above and beyond to provide this help.

    Mentioned in one of my subs-glad the Dragster thing happened, good for everyone.
    Basically, we have a hot-topic, and now a handful of active knowledgable opinions, I think.
    ThanksGregDeg, Barthax thanked this post
  3. nads's Avatar
    The rhythm of the 4th gear shifts is what I need to work on.

    Great Tutorial Greg!

    Hopefully you will do one that gets you that 5.57!
    ThanksGregDeg thanked this post
  4. Bayrock's Avatar
    Thanks a ton Greg.

    I'll see if I can apply some of this to my own technique.
    ThanksGregDeg thanked this post
  5. David Yancey's Avatar
    Thank you for the tutorial Greg. This is almost identical to the way I play and the way I achieved my 5.61 time in the TG database. It's great to see another person like me who was listed in the original Activision newsletters with many scores in the TG database and still actively playing Activision classics like Dragster and others. Great score and great tutorial.
    David Yancey
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    Updated 08-26-2017 at 08:36 PM by David Yancey
  6. andrewg's Avatar
    Dragster is hard. I can't do better than 5.74.
    LikesRogerpoco liked this post
  7. Rogerpoco's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by andrewg
    Dragster is hard. I can't do better than 5.74.
    That would beat my current .77, and I'm pretty darned proud of it! I'll have it lower soon.

    A 5.74 deserves to be submitted, Man, they don't all have to be first!
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