Part 56: Bonus Master, Dark, and Holy DragonsAlright, last storyline update we saw a lot of things that looked kind of like this:
So, what on earth is happening?
The answer is that all dragons have two final tiers of forms available above and beyond the different forms we've had so far. The lower tier is the Holy and Dark forms, while the highest tier is called a "Master Form." They've been mentioned a few times in game, but I've selectively excised those references because they were just a bit dangerous for the fourth wall. Now, on to the explanation:
Holy and Dark Dragons
The Holy and Dark Dragon forms are triggered by having all elemental statistics at 100, Mind and Dex at 250, and either Strength or Vitality at 250. The key to determining whether you're going to get a Holy or Dark dragon is whether your dragon has Life or Poison at 100. If Life is at 100 you get a Holy dragon, and if Poison is at 100 you get a Dark dragon.
Once your dragon reaches one of these forms there are two effects: in the first place, the dragon gets either a Holy or Dark elemental attack that costs several times what a normal attack does in terms of MP. These attacks, however, are , have a radius of 3 as opposed to the 2 of a normal attack. Secondly, their associated unit gets a matching attack that they can use in the field or in combat. The other major bonus is that the Holy and Dark dragon forms look cool as hell.
So, you might ask, what happens if both poison and life magic are at 100? The answer is a Master Dragon, which has both the Holy and Dark elemental attacks for each of the respective forms. Their units get them as well, but there's one major problem with these forms: they look identical to the most basic forms that all of our dragons had starting out. And where's the fun in that? As a result, I won't be getting these and won't be talking about them much. I will, however, talk about both their component forms. So..
Holy Form: Phoenix
Special Attack: Solar Flare
Phoenix is something that a lot of people describe as the most broken thing in the game for one simple reason: it's immortal. Whatever Salamando's HP total is when he transforms to Phoenix, it becomes 9999 and never. goes. down. His Master form shares this ability. However, there are some limitations to this form. In the first place, his MP isn't infinite. It's quite possible that if you use up all of your MP and the enemy has some kind of healing ability that you're going to end up taking a very, very long time killing them.
Secondly, if the unit that a dragon is supporting dies the dragon dies too. Since your human units generally have much less HP than your dragons this is a problem. My earlier game over that you saw above was a result of 5 units all deciding at once that Byuu was the best possible target and doing about 2000 damage to everyone in his group.
Dark Form: Effex
Special Attack: Raging Flame
Salamando's dark form has one major difference from the Holy form: it's not invincible. If you're really worried about making the game too much of a push-over, this is a good option. HP remains where it was before the transformation, and the attack is still pretty useful.
Holy Form: Saint Weapon
Special Attack: Burst Gale
As you can see, IceDrake/Inky's Holy Form very much looks like something along the lines of the FF6 Atma Weapon and performs similarly. It doesn't have any special powers a la Phoenix, but it's quite powerful.
Dark Form: Black Buster
Special Attack: Dark Light
Since there's no division of abilities as in the Phoenix, as a result there's no real plus or minus in choosing this form over the Holy Form. For personality reasons, a dark dragon just seems more appropriate for Inky than anything else. Not to mention his strong association with our wizards.. might as well give them some kind of dark magic.
Holy Form: D. Chimera
Special Attack: Big Carnival
Clyde's Holy form is a natural outgrowth of his basic form, and is fairly impressive. It's just as non-typically draconic as his original form, which is something I love. However, it wasn't quite right...
Dark Form: Black Chimera
Special Attack: Melee 99
The Black Chimera form is a simple color swap of the Holy Form, but there's something more about it that just suits Clyde better. Rather than having a conventional field/battle attack the Holy Form has, Melee 99 can only be used in battle. It's a bit of a special attack, however, as it does 1/3 of the target's maximum HP in damage as opposed to anything else. I'll have to experiment to see how it affects enemies with higher HP totals.
Holy Form: Raiden
Special Attack: Thunder Wave
For Flammie, we have this form as an outgrowth of his more normal one. It's amazing because of just how much more ferocious this looks compared to his normal mild form. Once again, however, there's not much to choose between the two forms other than preference.
Dark Form: Helmoot
Special Attack: Sky's Rage
This is reflected in his Dark Form, which isn't really anything else to write home about. Nothing particularly special either way, so it's a matter of which way you take him. This dragon form starts with points in life, so it's somewhat unusual to end up with this form.
Holy Form: Last Gigantes
Special Attack: Death's Undead
Holy crap, where did this come from? We go from two heads to one, and into this hulking beast. Death's Undead is a rather unusual attack that appears to look like a wide-area healing spell. Despite what you'd expect, however, this attack affects all enemies rather than just undead.
Dark Form: Belzebub
Special Attack: Fly Swarm
We've got a nice link between this form's name and the special attack, although it's once again nothing more than a basic Dark elemental attack. In some ways it's more appropriate however, giving the strange wings and the horned visage. Once again nothing to keep you from choosing one over the other besides preference.
Holy Form: Odin
Special Attack: Fatal Blade
Poor Blinky. I still have a use for him as a Black Dragon, so he misses out on the most dramatic transformation in the game. From a multi-eyed monstrosity he turns into a mounted spear-wielding combined life form. As you'd expect from a form named Odin, this dragon's attack attempts to kill everything in front of it. Considering the fact that most bosses and such are immune to these attacks, it just plain out sucks.
Dark Form: Dark Dragoon
Special Attack: Dark Blade
Unfortunately, however, the Dark Dragoon isn't much better. On the plus side, the attack isn't a status attack that'll be shrugged off. On the negative side, it won't kill anything. The Dark Blade attack is almost like a gravity attack, and takes off a percentage of the target's current HP. It's great for weakening opponents so that the rest of your units can finish them off, but other than that it's kind of useless. There's a reason that I chose this dragon to be my Black Dragon.