Part 6: Update 6Update 6
: Maybe your summon spirit would be able to tell.
: Our summon spirit?
: I believe she means me.
: Yes, you, doggie! I'm talking about you!
: I am neither a "doggie" nor a summon spirit. I am Centurion Tenebrae. You may call me Tenebrae.
: All right, Tenebie. So, do you notice anything strange?
: No, not especially. And my name isn't Tenebie.
: Colette doesn't miss a beat.
: Maybe it isn't related to the stone dais after all.
: What was that?!
: A monster?!
: But it disappeared.
: Emil! Above you!
Oh hey, rigged fights are back. Another "can't fucking win" fight. I just let the AI fight it out on auto until we were done with the timer.
: But the summon spirit we found here was a fake. And besides, we defeated it.
: Either way, it seems like that creature's responsible for these gusts. We've got to do something.
: But our attacks just bounced off of it.
: Let's look for a winged dragon.
: The winged dragon is the natural enemy of the garuda, the bird monster we just encountered. The garuda is protected by a special membrane-- a barrier of sorts. The only thing that can pierce it is the claw of a winged dragon.
: I call bullshit. Because this is bullshit.
: To be fair, someone of your caliber wouldn't need to worry about winged dragons.
: I thought the Heroes of Regeneration were immense badasses.
: I might know where we can find one. I met a man in Hima who tames dragons. I can take us there.
: Hima is where adventurers go, right? Is it safe?
: Don't worry, they're all good people.
: Excuse me, Chosen One?
: Please, call me Colette.
: Colette. Thank you.
: You saved us from that flying creature on the stone dais.
: Oh, no. I just tripped.
: You're really strange, Colette.
: Oh, I'm sorry.
: All right, let's go to Hima!
: Okay. Girls are strange.
Skit Video: I'm Not Giving Up
: Of course. What is it?
: Just be honest. How do you feel about Emil?
: Well, let's see. He's very kind, very warm-hearted.
: Do you like him?
: Well, I'm not giving up! I won't lose! Not to you, not to anybody!
: Oh, right. Good luck, I guess?
: I think Marta's gone off the deep end.
: She had some mental problems in her family tree. I couldn't rule anything out.
: Holy crap I had no idea there was actually something wrong with her.
: Eh, we never verified it and it's been four thousand years or so since she was alive so I'd say you can make fun of her as much as you want.
Skit Video: Tenebie
: I believe I said my name was Tenebrae.
: Oh, you don't like me calling you that?
: No, it's just that my name is--
: I've got it! I'll call you Mr. Doggy! How does Mr. Doggy sound?
: I am Tenebrae!
: Oh. In that case, I'll have to settle for Tenebie.
: That's it. My reputation as a Centurion is done for.
: Didn't you call him Tenebie for a bit back when you introduced him?
: ...yes. Sometimes it just pops out.
Skit Video: Collapsing Colette
: What? Oh, I'm fine.
: What's so funny, Tenebrae?
: "Co-llapsing Co-lette." You can be quite comical, when you try Emil.
: Oh, you're right! That must explain why I trip so much! Centurions are smart!
: You flatter me.
: Those two are going to drive me insane.
I have to wonder what the translators did with this, and what the original japanese pun was.
Ok, we're going to do a quest now. However, before we go into the quest I'm going to try putting this guy on my team. You will note he is a DEMON and is placed in the DEMON category and he totally looks DEMONic too.
You get quests from the Katz. I'm not quite level 12 yet but I decide to take it because what the hell.
Quest Video Ahoy!
: Emil, there is the monster who was changed into a human. Allow me. ...
: ... If we defeat all the monsters in this cave, he will be freed from the curse.
: Right, I get that part, but what's the difference between a good monster and a bad one? Do monsters even have standards for good and evil?
: Perhaps good monsters are those that simply come out and declare their goodness.
: ... Just saying something doesn't always make it so.
Ok this is a companion quest which means we get a new monster as a reward in addition to the reward from the Katz. It takes place on the "Dwarves' Ore Mine" map which is one of like 5 or 6 or so maps that quests can force us to proceed through.
Most of the random encounters are beyond easy.
I'd been playing on Normal because I'm just not as good at this as I am at Original Symphonia - the controls feel "looser" and I seem to run beside guys I'm trying to stab the shit out of a lot. Anyway I bump it to hard because I'm sick of this shit being too easy.
Oh yeah, treasure chests. Most treasure chests don't have anything immediately useful in them, unlike other Tales games where they generally have consumable items, money, armor, or weapons. In quests we mostly get synthesis materials.
Unfortunately bumping the difficulty doesn't really help that much for the random encounters
The first boss sits in front of the door inside.
Unfortunately he's "difficult" only in the most boring possible way - a lot of physical attack and hp.
His adds are pretty weak still.
Did I mention he hits reasonably hard?
: We did it.
: That makes three left.
We win eventually but it didn't really feel like much other than "man this guy has way too much attack and hp to be hanging around here with all these weak-ass random encounters". Seriously there's a giant leap in stats required between those random encounters I was annihilating in literally eight seconds and this guy.
The second boss is a pack of ghosts. They're much weaker individually than the skeleton earlier, but somewhat stronger than the random encounters I've been crushing like grapes.
: Two left.
: Thing's[sic] are going great!
The third boss is another skeleton. I've gained a couple levels since the last one so I'm not too worried. I wouldn't be worried even if I hadn't, it'd just take a while.
: Just one left!
: Don't let your guard down until we're done!
BTW watch my DEMON who is totally a DEMON attacking the air above his target. You better believe he got benched!
A couple fights later I had this guy, and boosted him up a bit with some monster tomes that increase XP rather than granting an ability.
Last boss is an imp??? BTW I should point out that imps (the first monster we earned, the possession of which powers up Tenebrae) are classified as DEMONS.
This guy has an army of skeletons with him but they're not the "boss" here so they don't hit as hard as before.
Here's another bit on Unison Attacks. When you have a major element and two minor elements, you can do the second-level Unison Attack. These are more impressive and do more damage. Our new golem is an earth-elemental creature and can thus fire off Ground Dasher in the Unison Attack.
Since I cast First Aid so much, and it's a water spell (all direct heals are, who knows why they chose water) you might consider using a few water monsters to try to get off a third-level UA.
This was actually a bit tense, due to how many decently strong enemies there were. If more fights were like this the game might be more enjoyable.
Yeah right here I'm thinking "man I wish one of us was water elemental".
The imp actually goes down slightly before his last skeleton ally.
There are plenty of worse ways to spend two and a half minutes (such as trying to think about the plot to this fucking game, which I have to do because I'm trying to be informative).
: ... He thanks you for freeing him from the curse, and says that he will join our party.
That doesn't look like a "him" to me, but it's Japan so you never know.
Party: Entrusted Alraune to Katz Guild.
: It was sort of fun to befriend a monster like this.
: Yeah! Though we have yet to understand their notions of good and evil.
: I was trying to forget about that!
I like that line, but not really in the context they intended.
: After a bit of a detour, they arrived in Hima
: Yikes! It's filled with monsters!
: It wasn't like this the last time I came here. I wonder what happened to everyone in town.
: Maybe it's because of the world regeneration. We have to do something.
: Let's just look for that dragon tamer for now.
Yes, despite being a town it has monsters in it now.
Skit Video: Aura of the Demonic Realm
: Is this also because of the Centurion's core?
: No, I doubt that is the only cause. Like the situation at Luin, unless a core is nearby, monsters should not attack a human settlement in great numbers.
: Then what could it be?
: It's faint, but I sense the aura of the demonic realm. Maybe this area is connected to demons in some way.
: Demonic Realm? That's where miasma and demons and such come from right?
: Yeah, it's been a tremendous pain forever and likely always will be.
: Before Lord Ratatosk descended to this world, it was joined to Niflheim, the demonic realm. Eventually, a door was created and the path between worlds was sealed, but some traces of demons still remain in this world.
: Yes. I think I've seen some evidence of that.
: Then, should we try and do something about it?
: No. The demons in this realm will probably be subdued to some degree once Lord Ratatosk awakens. We should concentrate on what we came here to do.
: The demons will be subdued once Lord Ratatosk awakens? Ratatosk was important, but those demons wouldn't have given a shit.
: That's a relief. I was afraid you were going to say we had to wipe out the demons ourselves.
: This place is crawling with monsters, too.
: I wonder what happened to the dragon tamer. I hope he's okay.
: I think we need to worry about ourselves right now.
: Here it comes!
Unfortunately increased difficulty doesn't make much difference to this guy's challenge or fun.
WTF is with these bosses having utterly retarded "attacks"?
Nothing else interesting happened in the fight.
: Or maybe they got eaten by all these monsters.
: I can hear it.
: Hear what?
: A dragon flying.
: I don't hear anything.
: A winged dragon!
: She's thanking us for avenging him.
: Avenging who?
: Are you saying that the dragon tamer is dead?!
: No. Apparently the tamer was able to get away safely. It seems that she's thanking us for avenging the death of her father, who was eaten by those monsters we just fought.
: The poor thing.
: She says that she would like to repay us. Even a young winged dragon would be effective against the garuda. How shall we proceed?
: I'm not comfortable asking her to fight in battle, but if she's okay with it--
: She's agreed to help us.
: Great! Thank you, little one!
: All right, let's go back to Asgard! This place gives me the creeps.
: Whoa whoa whoa. The Garuda has an awesome-ass shield that the Chosen of Regeneration can't break, but this tiny guy can break it?
: Yes, the Hima Winged Dragon has a specially-adapted...
: If the Garuda has such an awesome shield and only rare-ass dragons can break it, why don't Garudas, you know, rule the world and shit?
: The Garuda is one of the few life forms significantly dumber than Lloyd, Colette, or even Emil.
: I'll accept that explanation.
Skit Video: Childhood
: I wonder if you were even cuter when you were young, doggie.
: I am not a puppy. However... I may not look it now, but during my childhood, the monsters in my neighborhood often discussed my level of cuteness. "As a button," I believe was the consensus.
: See! I knew it!
: Do Centurions even have childhoods?
: Or do monsters have "neighborhoods," for that matter.
: Forgive me. I was just jealous of the baby dragon getting all the attention.
Skit Video: Like Best of All
: You sound serious. What is it?
: Answer truthfully. Who do you like more, me or Colette?
: What are you talking about?
: Just answer!
: I, well, that is-- Tenebrae, what should I say?
: You mean to say you like me best of all?! I must admit, I'm stunned.
: That's not fair, Tenebrae! I won't let you steal him from me!
: This is starting to get old.
: Before we go to the stone dais, I have a proposal.
: Oh? Well, what is it, doggie?
: I am a Centurion. Centurion Tenebrae.
: Oh, right. I'm sorry, Tenebie.
: Our winged friend is still too young and weak to deliver much damage if we attack the garuda head-on.
: Then what should we do?
: We could use a decoy to lure out the garuda and distract it, then have the dragon strike it from behind.
: Decoy? Who's gonna do that? I'm not really up to--
: I'll do it!
: Colette, you're too clumsy. I'll do it.
: I'm not clumsy! And I'm pretty tough.
: I'll do it.
: No, I'll do it.
: Enough! I'll do it! I can't let a girl be a decoy and hide.
: Emil, that may not be a good idea.
: I really don't want to, but there's no other choice.
: You'd do that for me? Thank you! You really are my prince!
: I know you can do it. Just believe in yourself!
: How come they don't fight when I volunteer?
: Maybe I have to take back my criticism of Colette's intelligence.
: All right then, Emil, please get on the stone dais to draw out the garuda. Make sure to give us some sort of signal when we should make our move.
: Okay, let's go to the stone dais.
Next time: Minigames! A boss fight! Maybe actually a dungeon?