Part 58: The Core
You're too late. I just finished my adjustments to the machina. Look! Aren't they wonderful? So much easier to manipulate than people!
Save your monologue for the next world. Sagi, let's finish him.
Hah! You think it'll be that simple?
I don't really care! I'm done thinking. Something in my heart is telling me to destroy you! That's all I need to hear! Now die, Verus! They're waiting for you in hell!
Verus throws his cane aside and stomps the ground with his bad leg. I guess he's lying about just about everything, huh?
Music: Ruinous Commander
This fight is unusual in a lot of ways. First of all, it is a three phase fight, with the first two phases being against these robot tentacles. These guys seem to exist mostly to weaken you a bit (not that that works since the Book of Mana exists) and for you to charge up your MP a bit.
The first fight is pretty much a throwaway battle. I usually try to end it with some form of icy EX Combo from Guillo to boost it's defense (many of them have that passive effect), but I'm not sure it makes any significant difference.
The second wave is also throwaway, but since my hand carries over into the third phase (that is, the phase that's important), I try to get Subzero Festival or Frigid Queen's Festival set up at the end of phase two.
And finally, we come to fight Verus himself, with four tentacle buddies. These bots are actually weaker than the ones we fought to get here, which is really really good because of the battle's main gimmick...
Verus has a pitiful 4000 HP, and yet he can be incredibly difficult to kill. You see, if any of the tentacles are alive, Verus cannot be harmed. If you try, the tentacles will defend him and nothing will take any damage. Even using hit-all specials are useless whether you target Verus or not. As such, you need to finish of the tentacles first.
Using Frigid Queen's Festival should be enough to kill them all. I'm a high enough level that even Subzero Festival works to kill all of the tentacles.
Unfortunately, doing either eats up my MP, leaving me without much to unload on Verus himself. You can maybe manipulate your MP if you time everything juuuuuuust right to get back to 5 MP almost instantly, but it's tough to do and I didn't pull it off this time.
Why might I need to act quickly, you ask?
Because Verus can revive tentacles at full HP.
This fight can be hella hard if you are a little underleveled, and is ridiculously hellish if you try to do it without Guillo's hit-all EX Combos. Like the Baelheit duel, I love and hate this battle because of what it displays it's nice that there's a fight that doesn't just boil down to The Apotheosis, but the effect doesn't quite work out when you just have to switch to a different super death combo instead.
Verus himself is a little stronger than Baelheit, but his only real dangerous attack is Death By Stomping, which I believe he only uses on downed characters and which is quite painful indeed (yes, he literally runs up and stomps on the character. It's hilarious, but I couldn't get him to do it because my characters wouldn't get downed long enough)
Anyway, I finally managed to kill the bots, charge up 4 MP real fast, and...
Sagi sliced him up real good.
Verus slams on the console, and the tentacles reactivate.
Yes! Oh, yes! NOW! Devour them!
You may not have noticed, but those tubes have afterlings in them. And it would seem the afterlings have something to say about the machina they're powering...
The bots short out, and turn to face Verus...
And that's how Verus died: getting eaten by machina powered by a wicked god.
He had that coming.
Is it over now?
That's right. It's over. Come on, let's head back. Everyone will want to hear the news.
Ohhh y-hey, why are we gaining exp from the final boss?...
Music: Crystal Abyss
???: Power...hearts brimming with it...
Hey, wait a minute! I would recognize that deep, spooky,
What comfort...malice and vengeance bring. Heh heh heh heh heh...Mayhap our thousand years of wandering were not entirely wasted.
Ahh...He's getting up!
He must be devouring Verus's heart!
Oh ho ho ho what the fuck
A foolish boy who shares his heart with a deficient god. A pair of wretches who bound their hearts to a murderous weapon. A sad girl, hardly human, who owes her existence to machina. Hm hm hm...Aha ha ha ha ha...Haha hah hah hah hah!
All shall be one with us!
I'd start talking about this fight, but like the Shanath battle, it is divided into a pre-fight and a proper fight.
The first part doesn't have a whole lot to say (besides that we're fighting some sort of Final Fantasy final boss in the void beyond time or some shit), so let's move on to the in between scene.
Hm hm hm hm...Now, you can be joined with us...Ha ha ha ha!
Dammit...I have to get up. If I don't get up, he'll kill us!
Sagi tries to stand up, wobbles, nearly falls over, and...
Music: Le Ali del Principio
Can you stand? Sagi, Meemai.
Listen to me. Don't let his heart seduce you. Believe in your own heart.
Hmph. Another heart on our plate? Hm hm hm hm...Splendid. We'll devour you with the rest!!
Verus-Wiseman charges up another blast and fires it, but...
Nngh...Watch the enemy's movements. I know I taught you that much. Don't tell me you forgot!
about holding your sword?
We've always been watching. Nothing you've ever done has been a mistake.
Right. So be proud! As long as you're confident, he can't touch you.
Uh-huh. And if your confidence starts to fail you, just remember whomever you love most.
Never let go of yourself! I know I have along ways to go...but you and Meemai shouldn't have any trouble.
The other Malpercio member fade away...
Sagi, are you OK? You were talking to someone.
Yeah. Just some old friends.
Nothing. Never mind. All right, Milly, Guillo, Meemai! This time he's going down! It all ends here!
All right, time for the final battle against Verus-Wiseman. I'm still not totally sure what's going on, but I think if we kill him things will work out okay.
Magnus of Life is a nasty attack it's like Boss Guillo's Heavenlapse, broken up into weaker but more hits. It hurts, but it's still not nearly as dangerous as that was. It's pretty cool looking, at least. I think it also heals Verus-Wiseman, but that's not really a big deal.
Guess why none of that matters?
To be honest, that's really all that's notable about the fight. Indeed, I consider Baelheit's battle to be the gameplay climax, with Verus being a gimmicky (but still potentially difficult) battle and this being also there.
So let's just cut to the chase.
...of a GOD!
He was ready to devour us if our hearts showed even the slightest weakness...But every time it got close to that, I'd see your face, Sagi. And I kept fighting.
I even thought of you, dingbat. Waaaay back in some forsaken corner of my heart.
Oh, you did? What a coincidence. I thought of you, too. You had this demonic look on your face, and I thought, The weak and abusive need my help yet again.
Hee hee. Hey, Sagi, what about you? Who did you think of?
I thought of Mom. Every time it felt like his consciousness would take over, I'd remember Mom's wings.
Suddenly, Tarazed starts shaking!
Music: The Dead-End Creatures
Urgh! It must be the shock from before!
This craft won't hold together much longer. We'd better escape before it takes us with it.
Back to the Sfida! Hurry! We don't have much time!
I'd make a joke about the final dungeon collapsing for no apparent reason after we beat the boss, but I'm more amused by the idea that Baelheit's super fortress, which most certainly was not relying on the tenebrous power of a god, is falling out of the Sky a couple days after he launched it.
Of course they did, Kahn. I told you they could pull it off.
That's right. The boy and his friends have succeeded where we failed.
Queen Corellia! What are you doing in Alfard?
Heh heh...The same thing as you, King Ladekahn.
Will they make it out of there? It's all well and good they stopped Tarazed, but not if they get blown up in the process.
Pops, are you trying to jinx them or something? Sagi and the others'll make it. I bet they're already on their way back.
Palolo...Master Rodolfo knows that. He's just...worried, that's all.
That's right. We placed a terrible burden on their shoulders. And yet they carried it through, even when we were powerless to help.
They're a brave bunch, all right. I just hope they come back alive.
Curiously, the game actually has us control Sagi as we leave Tarazed. What awaits us as we escape and head into the ending?
Let's go together!
> We'll never be apart!
> We'll have to split up someday.