Comments on Datacore Demolition (Mission 0)

By DeepDarknessDeepDarkness. Last updated

Background:
- A year and a half ago (today it's the 26th of March of 2019) I got a 4:57 in a pretty solid run, beating finally PDM's 4:58.
- Some time later, out of nowhere, in a run meant to be a 5:01 when compared to my 4:57, some weird glitch happened with the last scientist and somehow the run ended up being a 4:53.
- Short ago, ShavedThrone10 reappeared in the game with a 4:49 by using new strats.

10 days ago, after a loooong rest, and being so busy that I shouldn't have played at all in months, I however decided to plug my Xbox on and study Datacore in depth. I explored and practiced all of the new strats, I compared them to the old ones timing them several times. I found the best lines the scientist can say, and tried everything after freeing the 1st scientist: running fast, running slow, killing spiderbots, ignoring them, etc. That part of the level seemed pure RNG, the timings varied a lot in that section. And then I decided to try things with the last scientist, and I finally found out what on earth had happened in my 4:53. I went to sleep, and the next morning I got 4:44 in my first completed run of the day, a 5-seconds untied world record when set. I'm going to explain now all the new strats for Datacore, that allowed me to lower the Agent UWR 5 seconds and the SA one 9 seconds.

Okay, so taking my 4:57 as an example, what are the new tricks and how much they save?
- About the weapons:
1) Rocket Launcher saves 4 seconds to FAC-16 in the spiderbots room.
2) Flash Grenade for the ending seems more consistent, more effective and faster than using a Viblade's Shield or just running and getting hit. It saves a couple of seconds if done properly, at least.

- Other tricks and trivia facts you should know:
1) After rocketing the spiderbots, the scientist usually takes about 6.5 seconds to get out of his room. Sometimes he gets stuck out of no reason.
2) Right after he gets out of the room, he will say 1 out of 3 sentences (pure RNG) while running at you, and then, if you're nearby, he will say a new 1 out of 3 sentences (pure RNG) while staying still (I got the best combination in my 4:57, but not on my 4:53). You have to find what are the fastest lines in English, since I play in Spanish, and while the duration of the lines is the same, the text might not be. From getting the 2 fastest ones to getting the 2 slowest ones it's almost a 6 seconds differente!! That's a lot.
The strat with this dude is: lure him to the computer during the 1st line, push him towards the computer to adjust him and getting him near during the 2nd line. And now comes another trick:
3) Right after he finishes the 2nd line, he turns to face the computer and starts crouching slightly. If you slap him right when he starts crouching (not before, not after), he will instantly unlock the door, saving 3 seconds.

- The RNG race part:
Since the moment you leave the spiderbots room till the moment the last scientist starts saying the line that triggers the lift to come down, in a normal attempt where you just run and run, you will be normally getting times between 1:17 (if you're lucky) and 1:22. I got 1:20 on my 4:57 run. Now here comes the thing: I got 1:13 on my 4:53 run! So what's the strat? Pretty simple: run as fast as you can, and right after you meet the last scientist you want to shoot at him until he ends OUT of the corridor. A rocket is enough, and if it doesn't work, you must grab a Laptop weapon from later and shoot at him and pray for it to work. I always thought the key was to keep him as close to the lift as possible, but no, the key is to get him out of the corridor actually. And that's it. If you do that, he will skip one of his lines, and he will say his lift line instead, saving some good 4 seconds (compared to the lucky 1:17 case). That method is not only faster, it's super consistent in timings. You get there, shoot him out, run for the lift, and you get similar timings most of the times if everything was correctly pulled off. You will also very often fail the scientists objective when using this strat for some reason, although not always.
This trick also works on SA, as you can see in my 5:06. The differences with Agent mode, appart from difficulty, are:
- Crates take 2 punchs to break instead of 1.
- Datathief is faster.
- Lift takes about 24 seconds more to come down.
- I have no idea why, but my camspy seems to get stuck and ruin good runs more often on SA than on A, but I think this is just bad luck.

Now, for Perfect Agent: doing that trick can save maybe 4-6 seconds to a normal run, while killing him as he gets to the lift room saves dozens of seconds, so just don't do that trick on PA! On PA the trick is to 1) kill all the other scientists so that when you reach the corridor the last one will instantly run to the lift, and 2) kill the scientist as soon as he gets to the lift's room (the game won't let you kill him earlier than that, I think, so don't even try, or you will stun and delay him). That makes Xandra access the lift controls, and then it just comes down much faster than it should for some reason.

And that's pretty much it. If you add everything up you get that something around 4:41 is possible on Agent, and it really is, but it requires a very good run. Not sure if sub 4:40 is possible, though.