Part 18: Chapter Fifteen: BlessMusic: 02 My Home Sweet Home
: It was a close thing, though. We saved everyone, but almost drowned ourselves. Id rather not do something like that again.
: Im -still- not sure how we survived.
: Perhaps we were saved by a dimensional vortex?
: Yeah, okay, lets go with that.
: The Lord our Father teaches us that one good turn deserves another. I would very much like to repay you for your help, but how best to do it?
: Let me give you all a token of my appreciation and grant you the blessing of the Lord Eva.
: A place we call home? Is there some reason you cant give us the blessing here?
: If we did that then wouldnt the big guy and the dog man miss out on it? Cmon, lets go back to where they are! This blessing is probably, like, super-powerful magic or something!
: *Sigh* Okay, but first I want to check to see if anyone here has seen the thief.
Thankfully theres one person here who can tell us where the thief has got to.
: A girl with bat wings? Argh, looks like I just missed her again! Okay, we need to get on a boat as soon as possible!
: Uh Im sorry, but the girl took the last boat out of here. There wont be any ships sailing out of here for a while
: What? Are you serious?!
: Ryu please try to stay calm. It might be best if we went to meet your companions and received Father Rays blessing. Perhaps it will help us in some way.
: Yeah, youre probably right. Okay then, lets go back.
Music: 06 Were Rangers
: Heeey Bosch! Looking good!
: Oh, youre back!
: Aint this place the sweetest? Whod guess it all used to be a smelly old dump?
: Ill say. You and Rand have done a fantastic job.
: Take a look! We got our own room, no landlady or nothin! I told you staying here was a great idea!
: Youre a wanted man, Bosch. Its not like you have any choice but to stay here.
: Uh, about that any closer to catching that thief?
: Im sorry. She always seems to be one step ahead of us. She took the last boat out of Capitan.
: Dont let it get you down, Ryu. Im just happy youre willin to help poor old me.
: So this is your village? Rather ah quaint. Yes, quaint. Ahem.
: Who ya callin floppy-eared? Sides, were not the only ones livin here!
: Ryu, Nina and I are gonna take a look around the place. Thats okay with you, right?
: Huh? Oh, sure I guess
: Coming, my mistress!
: Dont make me regret not beating you more, monkey-man.
: Know that it is a great honour to receive this benediction. Through His grace, one of you shall become able to cast the Raise Dead spell.
Just a little detail here Ray will only offer the Raise Dead spell if every villager was saved. If you accidentally kill a villager or return to Ray without finding all six missing people hell teach a party member the Rejuvenate spell instead, which is the second tier healing spell.
With that we regain control of Ryu. Like Ray said, we can now talk to everyone in the party and decide what to do next.
: Drop in any time you want and you can swap around the members of your party. Now, aint that convenient?
As Nero says, this little area now serves as a hub for all of the party members who arent in the active party. Theres more to this building that we havent seen, so lets get exploring.
We can talk to everyone in the back room and get their opinions on learning Rays spell. There are a number of candidates we can rule out right from the start. Lin simply doesnt have the AP to cast the spell, so shes out. Bosch and Rand will both learn Raise Dead on their own after a while, so theres not much point in giving it to them. The only real possibilities are Sten, Ryu and Nina. Sten and Ryu have less than stellar AP pools (And Ryu will want to keep his AP very high due to a future game mechanic), meaning Nina is probably the best choice.
: Thats right. Father Ray is willing to grant one of us the power to use a powerful healing spell. Youre the strongest magic user here, so I thought you might be interested.
: Could you at least try? It would be very helpful to us.
: Well In the past it is said that Wyndias royal line used to possess powerful healing magic. I I suppose I could try. I make no promises, though.
: Yeah, I have.
: Then who shall receive this blessing?
: I think Nina would be the best choice.
: Thanks, Ray. For a priest, you arent half bad.
: Haha I suppose Ill take that as a compliment. Farewell, Ryu. May you always find what you seek.
And with that, Ray leaves. We can go back to the back room and find that everyone has something new to say.
: Far be it from me to say this, but wow.
: Those two did a bang-up job while we were gone! Makes me feel a little guilty just a little!
A nice little touch is that both Sten and Lin are true to their hyperactive personalities and move around a lot, whilst calm, placid Nina is content to stand in one place.
Upstairs we find a series of rooms along a narrow corridor.
They all look like this. These rooms belong to our party members and theyll hang out here when we dont need them. There are nine rooms in total spread out over three floors.
: If I hadnt built as many rooms as I did, some of you guysd be sleeping on the floor!
Rand hangs out in his own room. He certainly did do an amazing job, turning a ruined heap into a multi-storey pad with seemingly no extra materials whatsoever.
We can talk to Nero again and hell repeat what he said before, but this time a new screen will pop up after hes finished his spiel.
We can now switch characters in and out of the party. Bow is still a wanted man, so he cant join us. We can have Rand back now, but unfortunately hes currently four levels lower than everyone else. Thats right, kids theres no exp leakage to inactive party members. If you leave a character behind they arent going to gain any levels. This is guaranteed to cause problems since nearly every character will be a mandatory party member at some point in the plot. There are no easy solutions to this well, no easy legitimate solutions anyway so the only thing you can really do is to periodically switch in weaker party members and grind them up to acceptable levels. This is made slightly easier because it is possible to switch party members at any Dragon Statue after this point.
I decide to take Rand, Sten and Nina along for a short grinding trip to get Rand some levels.
Having chosen the party members to accompany Ryu, the Formation screen appears. Ill run through them all one by one and explain the benefits and disadvantages of each. (According to the all-knowing spergs at GameFAQs, anyway)
First up is the Normal formation, which is the default. In Normal formation, the frontmost characters (Ryu) base damage modifier will be 130%. This goes for both damage dealt and damage taken. The second, third and fourth members (Rand, Nina and Sten) have modifiers of 100%, 90% and 70% respectively. In terms of where an enemys attack will fall, the higher a characters modifier is the greater their chance of being targeted and vice versa.
In other words, this formation works best with a spellcaster as the fourth member. They will almost never be hit and even if they are the damage will be reduced by about a third. This is the default formation of the game and it is entirely possible to complete Breath of Fire II without ever deviating from it.
Next up is Scatter. In Scatter the first and second members have 120% damage modifier, the third has 100% and the fourth has 95%. In other words, this is a heavy-hitter formation that is best used when you arent including a spellcaster. Physically powerful fighters like Ryu, Lin and Rand are best suited to this formation.
Defence is, as expected, a defensive formation. The modifiers in this case are 100% for the first member, 83% for the second and third and 75% for the fourth. If the enemy is really pounding the hell out of you and you just cant survive then this is the formation you want. As with Normal, this formation works well with a spellcaster as the fourth member.
Lastly, we have Parallel. This is essentially a slightly more defensive version of Scatter. The modifiers are 120%, 100%, 90% and 83%.
Anyway, its time to bring Rand up to speed. The best place to grind is currently around Capitan, so I head out there.
And after! Thank god for Snes9Xs auto Fast-Forward option!
Rand learns Jolt, a lightning spell that Nina already knows. Nina herself learns Exit, a spell that teleports the party out of dungeons, and Lightning, the big spell Ganer used in the prologue to save Ryu from the Gunhead.
With everyone on the same level this looks like a good place to stop for now.