Part 8: Chapter VIII: Hex EdTime to head into the hexed part of Chamba. But first, let's talk to and , as they have a bit more information to give us.
: "I bet the people who get used as sacrifices are full of hate for the Empire..."
: "I mean, that's how the hex gets made, right?"
: "Well, I guess going through the hex is better than dealing with those Imperial types..."
: "Yeah...I mean, who knows what they might do, right?"
Food for thought. Time to head into the hex mists.
Welcome to North Chamba, where the music is creepy as hell. This tune plays in deep, dark dungeons and areas that have been hexed. North Chamba's first area is a gigantic maze of makeshift bridges and rooftops over the swirling mists of the hex. This is how we'll get through North Chamba, as going down into the mist is suicide for anyone but Ershin.
There's a few items scattered around in dead ends.
Our first new enemy of the hex is the humble zombie. Resident Evil could take a note off the zombie design in this game, as all of them have exposed ribs, stabbing points for arms, long lolling tongues, and some sort of horrible Alien Queen-esque growth or tail or sac with a stinger. As you can see, vanilla zombies start the fight confused, meaning they very well might smack themselves or their allies in the face, if they act at all. However, being hit - either by you, an ally, or their own attacks - brings them back to their senses. They're nothing to write home about aside from that little quirk, aside from the standard RPG standard of healing magic and items dealing damage to the undead.
Gassers are assholes. They're undead, so healing magic hurts them too, but they have a trick up their sleeves.
After two rounds, they coat themselves with poison, which hurts you if you attack them, and allows them to use Chlorine, a physical attack that has a good chance of poisoning the character it hits.
Ryu'll be taking that for now.
Ghosts are another funny case. They start the fight asleep, but if you wake them up by hitting them they get pissed and start throwing surprisingly nasty ice magic at you. Don't let them; one dose of Firewind blasts them to pieces before they can do anything.
Here's the next area. Let's just step forward and-
Stepping off the box, of course, sends it raising back up.
: "Ershin will go down and walk through the mist. Ershin says the two of you should move using the rooftops."
: "Um, are you sure we'll be able to make it across if we do?"
: "Ershin is certain you will."
We can now split between Ershin and the others by hitting select. This carries over to random encounters, so Ershin should just run for it if she gets any enemies. She can take a lot of hits, but trying to kill the enemies on her own is just not worth it at this point. As stated earlier, Ershin can go down into the thick of the mists and be totally fine.
Ryu and Nina raise the other box again so Ershin can go underneath it and explore.
Sweet. More fire = more better. Molotovs are basically Burn in a can.
There's also this lever over here, but Ershin says there's another lever that needs to be pulled with it. Hmm.
Ershin's big metal bulk should keep this box down just fine, now.
Ryu and Nina are able to cross over the upper box now, and Ershin informs them about the two valves. But first, secret loot!
A second entrance to the first area gets us...a loincloth. Well, loot is loot.
Nina and Ryu make it to the upper valve.
: "What should we do, Ershin?"
: "I am told that if both valves are opened simultaneously it will thin the mist somewhat."
: "That means we'll be able to get through it, right?"
: "Apparently so."
This is all automatic, so there's not pseudo-quicktime for this. That comes later in the game
Let's head on into the next area, shall we?
Boss Video III: Skulfish
The cutscenes before and after the boss fight included in the video have been reproduced below for your convenience.
The mist is awful thick in this part of town.
There's suddenly a rumble and moan from below the mists.
: "She says it is to be expected that strange noise would emanate from it."
FUCK THE OCEAN
: "She also says that as long as it is only sounds, we have nothing to fear. Come--let us continue."
Nothing but sounds. Right.
The mists suddenly pool together...
And a giant skeleton fish thing breaches them.
Ershin doubles over and shakes with laughter.
: "The malevolent energy of the hex has coalesced into a physical form. Ershin says it is extremely dangerous!"
: "If it's dangerous, why are you laughing? Shouldn't we be getting out of here?"
: "Apparently so. It would appear I was in error - I should not have laughed at that juncture. Very well, then. Let us flee."
And so we flee! ...what's that sound?
: "Ershin suggests that we should run."
To escape across the bridge, you need to hammer the O button or you fall into the mist and get horribly poisoned.
RUNNN TOOO THEEE HIIILLLS
RUNNN FOOOR YOOOUR LIIIVEES
: "Whew! Good! We made it!..."
The group defeats Skulfish while I make myself look like a complete ass on the internet
The Skulfish dissolves into a mass of shadows that flee into the mists.
: "Even if it has been struck down, it will slowly grow larger within the area affected by the hex until it is strong enough to reform. At least, this is what Ershin says."
: "I don't know why, but I feel sad for some reason...this hex...it's horrible, isn't it?"
Ershin begins laughing once more.
: "It was humans who created the hex. Ershin says you get what you deserve."
: "We must move on. Use the ladder there."
We climb the ladder and hop over a broken spot in the wall.
: "Without you, we never would have been able to do it!"
: "If you wish to thank anyone, you should thank Ershin."
: "Thank you, Ershin."
: "Um...yes, well, I'm afraid we don't have anything we can give you right now, but..."
: "Nothing of material nature is required."
Ryu climbs down the ladder.
: "You mean...Ryu?"
: "Apparently so."
: "Ah...I see...well, we need to get back to where Cray is waiting - the sooner, the better. If I know him, he's probably getting really worried by now."
Next time, we finally get back to the sandflier! Without the parts. Or money. And with an Imperial army detachment looking for us.