The Let's Play Archive

Atelier Iris 2

by Feinne

Part 3: Chapter Three: The Kingdom of Dust

When last we met Felt had passed through the Belkhyde Gate and into the unknown. He arrived in a place most unlike his home…

Video- “Arrival”

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Tatalia, the endless sea of sand…

An unforgiving place even to the prepared, Felt’s journey was in danger of ending before it even began.

What is this barren land? I can’t even feel any Mana…
This heat… I can’t go on…
But… must… go on…

And the heat was not the only danger.

Feinne’s Fourth Wall Lectures: Battle Basics
So, we’re about to have our first fight. Let’s take a look at the screen in combat.

At the top of the screen we see the time gauge. This lets us see the order of actions coming up. How fast a character’s action moves depends on their speed and how far it goes back when they act depends on what they do. If you notice there are two sections of the bar, and we’ll get to why that’s important when we talk about our combat actions.

Also at the top of the screen is the skill gauge. Our actions in combat fill this up, and we then expend it to use our skills. Weak skills use a single full bar, whereas the most powerful ones can use three.

Our most basic combat actions are the Charge and Break Attacks. These are normal weapons attacks, and we’ll be using them most of the time. Charge Attacks cause damage and fill our skill gauge. Break Attacks, on the other hand, push the enemy back on the time gauge. This is important because if we can knock the enemy back and they end in the thick orange part of the time gauge they become ‘broken’. This causes their time to advance very slowly and allows us to accrue Chain bonuses, which increase the money and exp we gain from battle. Breaking enemies is very important, and we want to do it whenever possible. Even a few Chain hits provide a huge experience bonus. Once we’ve built up some charge we can unleash Skills. These are powerful attacks or support abilities and are our best way of smashing powerful enemies and building up huge Chain bonuses. If we need some healing or damage but don’t have any skill charge, we can use Items we’ve created through Alchemy or purchased. We can Defend in combat to reduce the damage taken and gain skill gauge from being struck, and of course we can run.

Felt has a few unique combat notes. He can use Mana Synthesis in battle to create and use any Mana Item on the spot, and he should probably do so most of the time in practice. He also automatically does his Elemental Extraction on any enemy he deals a killing blow on, converting them into raw Elements. This is a great way to get some rare elements like Life. Anyway that’s all we need to know for now.

Felt was concerned, but he had no choice but to continue forward.

I have to be careful.

Even though there was no end to the desert in sight.

It sure makes you appreciate Eden.
So… Hot…
And, I have to deal with monsters…
I hope it’s safe to use Mana Synthesis to make more of Viese’s Heal Herb.

Onward and onward he traveled through the endless sands.

But if I don’t find a place to rest soon, who knows what will happen…
Just keep moving…

Until he could travel no more.

Video- “Chance Encounters”

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It’s over…

While he’d reached an oasis, only the merciless soldiers of the Empire awaited him.

Soldier A: Sir Chaos! I found someone passed out on the ground.
Soldier B: Is he a Simsiltian?
Chaos: Those fools believe Tatalia is their own personal garden.
Do you believe that person is from Simsilt?
Soldier B: Yes, sir! He must be!
Soldier A: Sir Chaos, what shall we do with him?
Chaos: Leave him.
Sooner or later, those who can’t fend for themselves shall share his fate.

It seemed his death was certain.

Felt, it’s morning already…
Come on, Felt. It’s time to wake up.
Get up sleepyhead.
Hey, come on. Wake up already!

But fate had something else in store.

Ugh, ughh…
W-Where am I?

For someone else visited the Oasis that day.

Huh? Were you the one who saved me?
You… You moron!
What’s your problem?!
That’s no way to talk to the person who just saved your life!
And you’re crossing the desert dressed like that? Unbelievable!
Are you just trying to die?!
Look, I had no idea that this hellhole was beyond the gate!
Gate?! What are you talking about?
The Belkhyde Gate.
I went through the gate in Eden and wound up here.
Wow, the heat stroke has really gotten to you.
I’m not delusional!
Okay, okay. I’ll play along with your twisted little mind game.

Naturally, she had no idea what he was talking about. What she did know, though, was how not to die horribly in a desert.

I don’t even know where I am, let alone where I’m going…
I just want to find a place with a lot of people.
Tatalia Village has a lot of people.
Which is perfect since I was heading there already. You can come with me.
Thank you. Honestly, I was getting a little worried.
How sweet. So, what’s your name?
It’s uh, Felt.
Felt, huh? I’m Noin. I’m glad to meet you.
Yeah, me too.
Oh, uh, Noin?
…You, uh, saved my life.
Thank you.
Oh, don’t worry about it!
Well, we best get going. Tatalia Village, here we come!

With her help, they pushed on to the village of Tatalia.

Video- “Tatalia”

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You really don’t know anything, do you Felt?
Even out in this desert, as long as there’s water, people can live.
With the right know-how, you can even farm and live like ‘normal’ people.
I was planning on visiting the mayor to say hello.
Great, I’d like to meet him, too. He might know something about Eden.
You may want to keep all that to yourself for now. He’s pretty busy…
What’s going on?
Ha, oh, nothing. Never mind.
Come on. His tent is just to the north.

Before they entered the tent, they encountered an odd merchant indeed.

I know what you’re thinking, “Even though I live out in the desert, I still want some color in my life.”
Well, just leave it to the Zwital Merchant’s Association.
Need a hard-to-find specialty item? We’ll have one for you in a snap!
Zwital Merchant’s Association?
What’s this? Young man, can it be that you have never heard of us?
This can’t be! You’re too old not to know us.
Where do you come from?
I, uh… I’m from Eden.
Eden? Never heard of it. Is it way out in the sticks?
Out in the sticks…
You see, the Zwital Merchant’s Association services all of Belkhyde.
We carry everything from antiques to goblin pants!
Why don’tcha stop by and have a looksie?

After looking through the unusual merchant’s wares, they proceeded to the mayor’s humble abode.

Mayor, you don’t look too good. What’s wrong?
Mayor: The Imperial Army is trampling the Desert Ruins.
The Imperial Army? They must be tracking us down…!
Mayor: And, just before the Harvest Festival…
If we can’t use the Desert Ruins… I don’t know what we’re going to do.
Don’t worry about a thing, Mayor. I’ll drive ‘em outta here.
Oh yeah, Felt, didn’t you have something to ask the Mayor?
Mayor: My… You certainly look… interesting.

The mayor, sadly, knew nothing of Felt’s plight.

I came here to investigate what caused the quake in Eden.
Mayor: Eden? What is Eden?
It’s a whole other world. You’ve never heard of it?
Mayor: No, I have not.
Oh, I see…
Mayor: *sigh *… Please excuse me. I need to rest a bit.
By all means. Thank you very much.
Mayor: What are you going to do now?
First, I should find someone who has at least heard of Eden.
Mayor: Ah… That’s a good idea.
Thank you.

Felt was not the sort to let people in trouble suffer, though. Nor was he the sort to let debts go unpaid.

It would really be a shame if you fainted again.
Hey! Why don’t you help me out?
I’d be happy to take you to another town.
I don’t mean to brag, but I know this area like the back of my hand.
Whattaya say?
I’ll make up for all the trouble I caused you.
Great! It’s settled!
Mr. Mayor, we’re gonna take care of it.
Mayor: Thank you. Head north at the fork in the road. You can’t miss it.
Be careful, you two.

And so he joined forces with Noin, and together they headed towards an ancient ruin in the desert. What happened there is a tale for another day…