The Let's Play Archive

Atelier: Arland Trilogy

by Sylphid

Part 101: Update XCVII: An Apprentice and the Downtime

Hello again. As you can probably guess from the name, this update won't be excitement city. Basically, right now I'm focusing on making accessories, and continuing development. Unfortunately, from what I remember, there are very few boss fights outside of the bonus dungeon left in the game. In fact, the next two bosses I fight will barely be more dangerous than random encounters. That's how bad it's getting here, folks. Anyway, let's mosey.

First notable thing is a new newspaper. Things are changing rapidly, and it's only going to get better. While it's a good thing we defeated the Forest Spirit, I can't help but wonder if we got rid of a major tourist attraction. Oh well.

Also worth mentioning is a new request from the Mines. This is the fourth and final one for the area, but it doesn't increase item quality / traits in the affected area. No, it just unlocks a new, not very valuable gathering point in the Mines. What it calls for is either 5 S-rank Bombs or 100 other rank Bombs, or a combination thereof.

We're obviously going for the 5 super Bombs, as 100 is absurd. It's honestly not too hard, but Phlogiston from Hagel won't give you S-rank Bombs. Although, you could if you put traits like Hand-Crafted or Quality increasing traits on the Supplements and carry those over with Cost level increases. Still, it would be a good idea to go get some great Phlogiston from the locations just west of Hart Outpost.

Rage Beast?! That, and the Dear Element (no idea on the name), show up as part of Modis Ruins III. These are the two bosses I mentioned, and trust me, Rage Beast in particular is pathetically weak compared to last time. "Barely above random encounters", like I said, is a good way to describe both. Especially with ultimate equipment, you could beat them with your eyes closed.

Here's a pretty useless attack item. The only reason to make them is for rank points associated with using Spirit Stones. The animation for it isn't flashy and it's just not that great.

Here's why a Royal Crown is so valuable. Skills are naturally more powerful than regular attacks, of course, and using more of them, and getting more turns in general, is going to be very handy.

One advantage of making all those damn Sky Flames was that I had a ton of Supplements with Cost +3 kicking around. The Phlogiston by itself has only about a Cost count of 3, and a Supplement only has 1 Cost by itself, so do the math. To get anywhere near an S, you need some traits.

This is an alright, but not valuable accessory. It can heal the HP and MP, as the description implies, but you also have to have a really high quality ingot to avoid a crippling effect by using it. Don't bother with it: that accessory slot is better saved for something else, and traits can't transfer very easily to it.

Something more valuable is the Pocket Watch, which gives anyone Pamela's ability to revive from KO every turn. It's pretty nice, but again, I'd advise something that increases yoru stats, as if everyone gets KO'd before anyone revives, you lose anyway. Actually, it is a good item to stick on Meruru, as the catcheism that losing your alchemist means losing the battle of course, still stands.

But let's stop talking about things I won't use, or things that I'm not likely to use soon. The Warrior Mask is back, and still as good as ever. The massive HP boost, and the regeneration makes the Mask a potent accessory. Better yet, it's easy to apply Diamond Light and Fairy's Prayer to the Mask, making it even better. Fairy's Prayer boosts all stats, and provides HP additional regeneration that stacks with the Warrior Mask. Diamond Light also boosts stats as well as raises resistance to all attacks. Can't get enough of that.

But, I needed the first in a long chain of ingredients, and luckily Hanna's selling it. Let's see what she has to say.

Take a look! I found it in a totally differenet place from last time. It's a mystery mushroom!

Mushrooms again!? I really hope the answer is no, but...Hanna, did you already...?

Of course not! I never make the same mistake twice! ...So, I just had a tiny bite.

Hanna! Listen, I need to have a word with you. Just sit down right there!

*fade for lecture*

...That's pretty much it. Do you understand?

I had no idea you were this much of a mushroom maniac. May...I feel like I flipped some kind of switch.

What was that?

But with so many types of mushrooms, how am I supposed to figure out which ones are poisonous and which ones aren't?

Well, that's...if someone else eats it, you'll know for sure.

See! You see, May!? I know they're scary, but there's no way of knowing unless someone tries it out! For example - this mushroom...what do you think?

D-Don't ask me! I looks a little bigger than a normal one.

I have a feeling...this one's gonna be pretty good!

N-No! No no no! Absolutely not! I've never seen a mushroom like this. It's too dangerous!

But what if it's totally edible? And a completely new species! Maybe it could become an Arls speciality!

Like maybe...Meruroom? Your name could be forever recorded in mushroom history!

My mushroom history...

Yeah! Wouldn't that be amazing!? So just take a tiny, little bitty bite.

That's...kind of appealing... But no! No no no! Whew, that was close...

Damn...I was so close.

Use those talents for your business! Anyway, eating it blind is a no-go. We have to let an expert examine it.

Oh...then why don't you bring me that expert? Princess Meruru's Royal Mushroom Research Project! Then whatever mushrooms turn out to be safe, I could sell them exclusively at my shop!

Royal Mushroom Research Project...that actually sounds pretty great!

Huh? Seriously!? I was totally kidding. But hey, as long as you're good with it.

Oopsie. Looks like I flipped another oddball switch. Hey, May! Come baaack!

We also have Peter, of all people, to check up on while I'm at Namiki Road. Let's see what he has to say. Video goes until Meruru says "I'm sure it wouldn't hurt for him to take it easy"

But that's all done with. Everyone's finally here, and my body is completely exhausted.

Mr. Coachman! Is your job all done now?

Oh, it's you. Please don't call me that. I have a perfectly lovely name - Peter.

After all this time, he finally gets that little introductory thing.

Peter...I never did ask you for your name, huh? Nice to meet you, Peter!

I hate to cut the conversation short, but I have to head back to Arland.

Huh? But I thought you were done bringing people?

Then I'll finally be done. I'm planning on sticking around after that. So that's pretty exciting.

I see. Do you have something special planned?

I have two things to do here. First, I simply must meet the princess, who's said to be the prettiest maiden ever.

You know, Peter's behavior and reactions throughout the game toward the fairer sex are mystifying, to say the least, in light of something he says in an optional conversation at the very end of the game. I can't spoil it here, but it's probably the last thing you're thinking of.

Huh? P-Pretty...? Aww, you're making me blush.

What? Why would that make you blush?

Cause I'm Merurulince - Merurulince Rede Arls. Meruru for short. Didn't I tell yoU?

Wh - hey, are you making fun of me? You're seriously the princess?

Yup. Seriously!

Oh, um, don't worry about it. You can just call me Meruru.

I...I see. Well, if it's okay with you...thanks, Meruru. Man...I sound so smooth!

Of course you do.

Hahaha. So anyway, what's the other thing you need to do?

I'll tell you next time. See you later, Meruru.

*Peter leaves*

Off he goes... I'm sure it wouldn't hurt for him to take it easy.

Well, whenever Peter gets excited about something, it's usually not something too pleasant. And considering it probably involves hotsprings...can't be good news. But, we can worry about that later.

Unfortunately, now we have another scene with Hanna. Serves me right for being lazy, I guess.

Please, May! I have something I absolutely can't skip today! Can you look after my shop while I'm gone?

Huh? This is so sudden...

Oh, you'll be fine. You've watched me work plenty of times. Okay, thanks!

*Hanna leaves*

You should probably get rid of that cat fairly soon. It seems to be hanging around Arls a lot, and Hanna sells a lot of edible stuff. Don't want that fur everywhere.

*fade to black*

I'm so tired...there were like ten times more customres than we usually get at the workshop.

That's because I sell all kinds of daily goods. Now then, let's just check today's sales... Hm? That's weird...the income doesn't match up with the amount of items sold. ...Shoplifter!?

Oh, no...a few people came in and bought a whole bunch of stuff, so I threw in a few extras for them...

Like, for free? Bad May! You can't just go around doing that! You have to charge them for everything!

R-Really!? Ahh...I didn't know. Do you want me to pay you back for it?

Yeah, now that you mention it...I wonder what's going on. ...Huh!?

I guess everyone heard about your giveaway bonanza. Looks like I'm gonna be pretty busy...

Oh no! I didn't expect it to go this far. L-Let me help out!

*fade to black*

Whew...that was a real whirlwind. Good work, May. And...more than that, I never imagined your giveaway strategy would have this kind of effect. In the end, I earned way more profit than what those freebies cost. Interesting...

I'm glad to hear that. What's the thing people say for stuff like this? "Strength through adversity?"

Or maybe "all's well that ends well"? Well, doesn't matter. Sorry I yelled at you earlier. You helped me learn something new. So, thank you!

Reminds me of that Simpsons episode where the family spends the last few moments of the episode wondering what the moral of the story was. Anyway, distractions aside, I finally got my ingredient.

I can't stress how annoying it is to make the Magic Paint, simply because between those three ingredients, that's a lot of materials. Still, I can whine about it, or get it done.

A few unimportant syntheses later, we have a few liquid items open. In addition to making new development items, the Liquid Solvent is my personal favorite "transfer" material for making armor. Remember, the golden word here is "Supplement". As long as you have the Cost, and the traits, you can move any trait to any weapon / armor / accessory.

Of course, you always have to be mindful of *what* traits can be transfered to weapons / armor / accessories, but you learn that from experience. It's not too hard to figure out. Once again, the Liquid Solvent has the advantage of a high natural Cost for moving traits to armor, and there's nothing wrong with making several to combine into traits, like with I did with Regentium.

As for what you should put on armor: again, it's your choice for the most part, but the best cloths are made from Medicinal Fibers, which like Rainbow Fragments have an inherent trait that costs 50 but is well worth it. Other than that, anything to boost HP significantly is a really good bet. Don't bother with elemental resistance traits, though. It just doesn't tend to work out that well, even against bosses that have a lot of elemental attacks. HP works for anything. LP increases are also worthless.

Now then, we have another Rorona pie scene.

Yup. But I'm almost done! And...done!

Let's have a look. Oh, you made a new pie again. What kind of effect does this one have?

Well...if you eat this, you'll become a super duper nice person!

A nice person? In that case, I'd love it if Ms. Astrid would-

Agh! Ms. Astrid, when did you get here!?

Huh? Just now, obviously. I just happened to be in the area, and I just happened to stop by the workshop.

A likely story. With how frequently Astrid is showing up, I wouldn't be surprised if, instead of working on an anti-Potion of Youth, she's hanging out in the bushes or something.

Well don't just barge in like that. You really startled me.

Listen to you. Do I need to ask permission every time I enter my apprentice's workshop?

I think most people would...

Anyway, you called my name. I'm listening.

Y-Yes...would you l-like some?

I certainly hope you're not trying to turn me - your master's master's master - into a guinea pig.

O-O-Of course not! I just wanted to repay you for all your kindness!

What's with that squeaky voice?

Wh-What? This is how I always sound.

Hmm...oh yeah? Sorry I doubted you. That's just my nature. I will happily accept this gift from my pupil. Okay then, let's have a taste.

Here it comes...

Now let's see what happens.

S-Sorry...this pie is supposed to make people really nice when they eat it. And I wanted Ms. Astrid to be a little nicer, so I...

I understand. Thank you for being honest with me. That's very nice of you!


But what I don't like is how it started. You wanted to trick your master into eating something totally unknown.

I'm sorry...

As part of your apology, you shall join me in my experiment today.


As an experimental guinea pig, to be percise. I've just prepared a new potion and I need you to try it. But don't worry. It has an intense side effect and you won't be able to move for the rest of the day...but that's it! A very nice person like you would be happy to help me out, right?

*fade to the next day*

Rorona's ability with pies is potent, indeed. Perhaps as a child her lack of memories lets her focus on making more and more effective pies. I cannot wait until she makes her next one.

A few days later, I bought back five S-rank Bombs for the Mine's final request. Like I said, even though it's a job and worth rank points, it's not particularly worth it in the long run.

Yeah, it's a C-rank Fragment, but that's one of the higher quality materials I've seen here. Everything at this spot is a Rainbow Fragment, but the quality is abysmal. The only reason you'd need this spot is if you really, really needed some Fragments, but can't afford, for whatever reason, to go to Modis or Furthest Garden.

If you're trying to make weapons with this, don't bother. Along with traits, quality also effects a weapon's potency. The higher quality the weapon / armor, the more effective it is. Simple as that.

So here's the result of me combining ingots. Notice something missing? That's right: Spirit Power. I completely forgot about it when I made this, and assumed I had my final ingot ready to go after making this. Not so, but I won't catch it until quite a bit later. Also, I could have easily replaced Attack Boost or Attack +10 with Master Skill, but honestly it's not needed at the moment. However, since Meruru doesn't have any skills, it's not a bad idea to add attack boosting to her weapon alone.

Additionally, so you won't end up in the same fate as me: when you make the dummy weapon, make sure the resulting weapon is made only from Regentium. Some final weapons can be made from either Sunlite or Regentium, but if you try to disassemble that weapon, the disassembly will result in a Sunlite. Obviously not what you want.

Let's move on to a scene at the Study.

Indeed. It seems our project is going smoothly. However, it's too soon to make a proper progress report just yet. You must stay focused a while longer.

Jeez Rufus, there's just no pleasing you! Can't you just be happy things are going well so far?

I am only concerned with results. Save your rejoicing for when you actually succeed at your task. Anyway, I have a new suggestion for the facility construction plan that I'd like you to take a look at.

Another plan already? Okay, let's see... Hmm. Oh yeah, this looks neat!

Not only is it "neat", but with this we can expect an increase in profit and utility. Do you approve?

Oh Rufus, don't get my hopes up like that. Well, at the very least, I already know what it does.

Yeah, let's do it! Everyone's gonna love it!

Very good. Please come let me know once your'e ready to construct a facility.

Well, it's fairly cheap, and the Legendary Statue looks like crap without the Park in place, so I need no reason not to oblige. This next scene came up when I canceled out.

We can't develop the entirety of Arls. We have limited resources and manpower. Also, some land is simply unusable. Placing a commercial building away from town, for example, is a bad idea. If you want farmland, we may find rich soil for cultivation, or be forced to begin by plowing the land.

Gah, this is all so complicated! I don't understand anything you just said.

Which is why I'm organizing things. Your role is to seek out issues or requests, like a kind of foreman. Arls has abundant natural resources, but its land is difficult to develop. And it lies far away from the Arland Republic.

You've got to hand it to Rufus. Not only does he always know how to fulfill each request, but he also knows how many points he should give toward each request to know what he can develop with the kingdom's current development. I've certainly heard worse excuses for gameplay mechanics.

That's true. If it was a little easier to get to Arland, I'd definitely go and visit more often.

The streets running through our town today were once too rough for even a wagon to cross. Lord Dessier and his predecessors have worked to improve transportation across Arls for generations.

I had no idea. I always figured Dad jsut sat around doing nothing, but it looks like he actually does a lot of work.

Umm...I guess he just seemed like this overprotective, uptight guy who just likes reading and signing documents.

Lord Dessier would weep if he heard you say such things.

Nice save.

As it should be. I suppose you can't see the truth of your parents until you see them as more than just your parents. Do you think I would have served Lord Dessier for so long if he weren't a capable and admirable man?

Now that you mention it...I've always wondered why Mr. Perfect Rufus would want to work for Dad.

It was Lord Dessier who noticed my talent as a child and provided me with a first-class education.

Whoa, really? I can't imagine Dad doing something like that at all!

Ugh...fine! I get it now. I'll do my best from now on. Okay then, see ya later!

A key ingredient of the Warrior Mask is the Enhanced Paint, and luckily you can drop it off at Pamela's. With Enhance on this, the Cost value of this particular Paint is more than doubled, from 33 to 68. That'll more than stick Diamond Light and Fairy's Prayer. I'll have to wait until Pamela restocks to make the Masks, but hey.

The Blood Bowl is born. Too bad we can't fight there, but I'll take the money.

Unfortunately, that Paint wasn't good enough to get HP Regen L on it, but I'll take those numbers. In fact, I've got half a mind to use this Mask when we get to the bonus dungeon, simply because I can't come up with a better item right now or without some time-consuming syntheses.

Because we've got business outside Arls soon, I'll be bringing the eternally lovesick Mimi along with the object of her affections. Remember she wants to tell Totori in-person, and we have those monsters near Modis we need to ice.

On the road to ultimate armor, we make our first Linens. Actually, I can use the Paint in these syntheses too, which made putting Fortified Fiber on this a breeze.

On the other side, we have this. Life Guard and HP Charge by themselves is +110 HP, and that's before the added HP gain of highest-tier armor. Very soon, you'll see just how effective it is.

This here armor is probably the best in the game. The stat gains are exceptional, and anyone can wear it. Hard to argue against it.

Again, hard to say no. And this number is slightly thrown off, since the Solar Cloak she's currently wearing now is plenty potent. I wish I could have a better trait in place of that Quality Lv1, but if there's something I learned as a writer back in college, is that sometimes you just have to say "Enough" and move on. I see no reason to make any more cloths. In reality, this Soul Guard raises HP by 160.

But you know what we don't have enough of? Rorona making strange pies. Luckily, let's wrap things up with Rorona's latest and greatest. This is the last of these pie scenes, though not the end of Rorona's ending flag. Video goes for the rest of the update.

Mmm, that smells delicious. Is it almost done?

Yup! I just need to swirl three more times. Swirly, swirly, swirly, and... Done!

It looks good as usual, but the side effects have been getting scarier. What's this one do?

It's...hehe...a secret!

Hi, Keina! Here, eat some pie with Meruru!

Wh - me?

Nobody who eats Rorona's pies ends up looking very happy...I'm kind of nervous.

Don't worry! Trust Rorona. It's gonna be so much fun! I have to? I'm not exactly thrilled at the prospect.

It'll be fine. I'm here for you if anything happens!

Meruru... O-okay. I'll give it a shot.

All right, then! Eat up!



You're right. I don't think anything's changed. ...Huh?

Oh boy. Rorona made a body switching pie. She probably absorbed some of Marc's mad genius by simply being in the same room as him at one point in time.

Wh -? I'm...!

Yay! Success! Yaaaay!

This is -!

I made a Switching Pie! You switch places with whoever else eats the pie!

You make it sound so simple... Meruru, what do we do now?

This is also the second time something has happened regarding Keina's body and someone doing something with it. Something is definitely wrong with Keina.

Ah, this is so cool! Look, look! I'm Keina now!

We have to show this off to everyone! First my dad, and then Rufus-

N-No! You'll give your father a heart attack!

Oh, you don't know that. He might be happy that I'm ladylike now.

Ahhh! What are you saying!? You can't go around embarrassing me like that!

Hehehe. Can I touch them?

No! Absolutely not!

Maybe I can open up a shop!

Huh? A shop?

Yeah, a pie shop! I wanna open one. I want everyone to come and eat my pies.

I think that's a great idea! You'd make everyone really happy with your fun, tasty pies.

That would cause all kinds of problems. Please don't even think of doing something so dangerous!

You can't say stuff like that, Keina. You're me now - you have to be more daring. If I were me, I'd definitely agree to something exciting like that.

That may be true, but... Anyway, Ms. Rorona, how long is this going to last?

You don't know!?

It's okay. I'm pretty sure you'll go back to normal sometime.

Pretty sure...? So what are we supposed to do until then?

"What" indeed. You'll have to figure that out in the downtime between updates. Anyway, not a very exciting one, but the RPG genre isn't exactly known as a thrill-a-minute kind of deal. Next time will be more exciting, that I assure. We'll even hear a shocking revelation next time.