Part 3: Bonus Caves And VampiresWelcome back, everyone! Last time, on Breath of Death, we completed a bonus cave, a dungeon, and came one step closer to a new town. Today, we're going to be visiting that town and another bonus cave, so let's dance.
Urgh. There are so many references in this game, but some of them bring up memories best left buried.
Ocarina of Time reference, to Navi. I know someone is going to wonder about it, and the name is just different enough that you might not connect it. I didn't until I was taking the screenshots later.
Inns are nice in that they'll never charge you, and with the way you restore all HP after battle, you could do some grinding pretty easily, but that's not fun. If I were doing hard mode, I'd think about it, since I'd be getting my ass beat if I didn't do a bit of grinding.
Son of a bitch!
This is a reference I approve of.
We're in Lufestopolis, just so you know. This is a reference to the Lufia series of RPGs; they were known as Estopolis Denki over in Japan, so you combine the two and get this town!
Aren't we already dead?
Well, we don't have any better direction.
LITA, you say? I'm sure that's nobody important.
Ah, a weapon shop!
Yeah, that's not going to get tiring ever.
Unfortunately, neither of our current party can use the Shotgun, so we'll just grab a Katana. One nice feature in this game is when you're at the shop, you can immediately compare the weapons or armor you're about to purchase, so you can immediately know what you're about to lose out on; with the Katana, it's a straight upgrade, but if we were looking for Sara, we might lose that +50 Strength, but would +40 Magic be worth it (I think so)? Would losing some Agility make up for gaining that much more Strength?
Case in point here; the +50 Strength is really great right now, since she has the one attack spell. Dem is strong, but having someone else around to bash shit about is also damned nice. This would add another 10 Vitality for her, and +50 HP, but right now, I keep the Strong Ring.
She's already outspeeding 90% of what we encounter, and see my argument above for why I'm not buying this.
600 Gold for some shit that nobody in our party can use!? Inconceivable!
South of there is some fuckin' creep.
That Sara seems to understand on some deeper level.
Thank you, Dem. I'm glad we have a voice of reason.
Here's another reference coming. Can you guess what it is?
Yeah, who was guessing Mass Effect?
As far as I know, you can't find Rex around here anywhere. I could be wrong, but I did some searching last night (well, I googled mutant sheep breath of death) and didn't find anything, but I didn't try very hard.
My personal theory is that this skeleton got hammered and ate his sheep.
Does the sheep have his own bed?
I think that's the library, since I can't figure out why a building would be full of books and not be a library of some sort.
There's a Bonus Cave along the way, so we won't be making it to that dungeon just yet.
For this update, I originally took 315 screenshots, and then quickly decided, "Fuck that, that's getting split into two parts."
Just over the bridge and south leads us to our next dungeon.
There are tons of different paths here, but they'll all lead to the same place. It's just which way you want to go to get there.
And, of course, there are random encounters.
Palette swaps are pretty common, since it's an RPG that takes heavily from the old-school, and I've never had much of a problem with palette swaps. I think it gives you a general idea of what to expect from a certain enemy type, which isn't a bad thing in an RPG. While your characters are leveling up, they grow stronger and more knowledgeable of what they're fighting, but so do you, the player; you get the chance to learn about these different monsters and to spot certain characteristics.
Or maybe it was just to help save space on cartridges and I'm just bullshitting myself.
Hailstorm is decently powerful, and the random aspect can be a little annoying at times, but when you're fighting one strong enemy, you can blast them with good power, and boost your combo count.
My general rule of thumb is to take the attacks that will boost my combo count; Deathblow can do some incredible damage. There are also some skills that will gain more power based on your combo, so having easy ways to boost your combo count can really help with absolute destruction.
This next bit of chatter, I'm going to present without any commentary.
The paths here that don't go to the left are dead ends.
But as long as you're following a path, you can't get lost here.
Sturdy Ogres are exactly what they sound like.
For one, they have a bunch of health.
And they hit very hard, too. They have two attacks, and both are just different flavors of crushing your skull.
But, hey, not bad EXP or cash drop.
And just like that, we've looped back to the beginning.
On the way back, we encounter a new enemy type.
They have 140 HP. For whatever reason, I didn't take a screenshot of that.
We don't have a ton of crowd control right now, but we do have some options.
Alright, let's get back to the point here.
Ah, Dem leveled up. Now, this sounds pretty good; Dem is going to be regularly attacking a lot of the time, so 10 MP isn't a huge drain on his resources. But, Multi-Strike, Deathblow, and his other Techniques and Spells use up that MP, too, which could be used to bash brains out.
His passive doesn't raise it quite as much, but it's an automatic 10% that I don't have to use MP to apply, which allows me to use another turn from Dem to lay on some damage and boost the combo count. Either skill would be a good choice, but I go with the passive, since I prefer dedicating turns to damage.
The big encounter of the cave is just ahead, but first!
Sara gains herself a level!
An extra 5 MP after battle? Well, hell, that sounds pretty good. What's going to compete with that?
Oh, something that makes it no contest. This adds another hit to her regular attack, so now she has two attacks, for 0 MP, at full strength. I take this skill.
That, and Sara has a glitch associated with her that she gains full MP after battle and that is fucked up if you take the MP Regen, so...Yeah. It's not quite cheating, but I am exploiting a flaw in the system to my advantage.
Oh, well, shit.
This fight does not go well for me. Especially since these guys have enough health, can do a ton of damage, and there's five of them. Dem's MP is pretty low, so I can only do one Multi-Strike, and Sara has low MP, as well. I don't have access to my big power attacks and my regular attacks aren't cutting the mustard.
But I never gave up!
Despite terrible odds, constantly increasing strength, and more than 50% HP in damage.
So, yeah, let's take a moment to do some other fights and get some MP to work with.
Not a ton more, but Sara does have enough to blast Hailstorm, while Dem has enough to Multi-Strike two of them, which is a one hit kill.
When someone is killed, the borders gain red coloring.
White means that shit's normal.
While green means that things are starting to go south.
And this means that things couldn't have gone much more south.
Now, was this worth it?
Aye, I reckon so. With her two hits, Sara is now dealing damage above Dem's level. It's a very moment.
Heading out of there, let's take a regular encounter to check out what Sara is capable of.
In Breath of Death VII and Cthulhu Saves The World, take any skills you can that increase your regular number of hits. It effectively doubles your damage, for free, as well as boosting the combo count.
Anywho, let's cross the other bridge and get to town.
Well, this place has had better days.
Well, we've come this far, so let's explore a little bit.
Quick, Dem, attach it to your sword!
DO IT NOW
Being in a destroyed town, we're going to fight Looters, which I think we also qualify as. And the apocalypse was so bad, even the cars are dead.
I don't have too much to say about these guys. The Ghost Car can increase his speed and power, but that's about it.
Since we're not going to have a choice, let's go make a new friend.
: No, we're just...
: Or stick a take through my heart?
: Or chop off my head?
: Of course not!
: Just wanted to be sure. You can never be too careful in a place like this. The name's LITA, vampire inventor and scavenger of old technology extraordinaire. What brings you two to this old junk heap?
: I'm Sara and this here is my bodyguard, Dem.
: (Not bodyguard. Hero.)
: We're on a quest to discover the secrets of the past by searching old ruins for ancient artifacts.
: Sounds like fun. Count me in.
When you break it down, I think most RPG recruitment is like this; this game just simplifies it.
And this is just pure bullshittery. I've no problems with Lita being around, but I suppose Dem has to learn the power of friendship.
That's a reference, too. I'm not sure if that one was intentional or not, since Lita gets access to some Lightning magic.
Uh...I don't remember what this does. We'll find out next update!
Whereas Sara is more of the White Mage, Lita is more of the Black Mage. She gets more multi-target spells, as well as a couple of different elements, such as Earth and Elec, and she uses various guns for weaponry and glasses fill her armor slot.
Despite the Handgun adding +1 Hit, I usually prefer the Shotgun, since it hits all enemies in battle. Unfortunately, that only adds one to the combo counter; you don't get a combo increase for each enemy hit.
And that's where we're going to leave off today. Next time, we're going to actually go through this dungeon, the ruined town and maybe discover a little more about our ultimate quest.