The Let's Play Archive

Chaos Rings

by ivantod

Part 17: Frozen Sky, Scorched Earth

Another day, another fight. Olgar, Vahti, Ayuta and Mana did not survive, so we have again the same four characters like in the previous version of events. Their backgrounds are, however, slightly different in this timeline.

Quick chat with Piu-Pui in case he has something different to say...

He does not. This is the same dialogue that we already heard when Escher and Musiea were at this point, so we can move on to bigger and better things. He doesn't have any new weapons/clothes to sell either (not that we have been buying much of his stuff lately, all our equipment seems to be coming from chests these days).

So, we'll go back over to Escher and Musiea then.

When he did that, Olgar and Vahti stopped attacking...
Ha ha, those two were a lot more naïve than they looked. There's no way I'd pass up a free shot like that.
How can you say that? If they hadn't stopped attacking...
Yeah. We might be dead now.
I can't believe you saved me...

We are interrupted by the Agent...

However, you have not yet obtained your proof of partnership.
Ask yourself, why is your partner the person here with you now?
Find the answer to that question, and you shall find your proof.
If you can't find your proof, you will not be allowed in the final battle.
Proof of our partnership...?
Now, my children. The third door has been opened. Go forth, fight hard and seek your proof.

He leaves, and we can continue the conversation.

Olgar, Vahti... What was the truth you two knew...?
There's something... off about these monsters. Nothing about their ecological system makes sense.

At this point, they get into the conversation about how monsters resemble modified animals from their countries and how Agent/someone is testing their intellect via the puzzles. But we've heard that conversation before, and it even involved this same group of people last time too. So we don't need to hear it again.

It really ticks me off.
In other words, someone else is giving him orders.
Yeah. I'm sure of it.
So, we can't even defeat the Agent, and now you're telling us there's someone even stronger above him?
I'm going to get stronger and stronger and crush the Agent once and for all.
If someone else is pulling his strings I'll just take them down as well.
Besides, they may not necessarily be stronger than the Agent.
Yes... that's true.
Whether by your hand, or by ours... They will get what's coming to them.
For Ayuta, Mana, Olgar and Vahti's sake as much as ours.
I'll drink to that!
I've never seen so much blood in my life... I can still smell it from my clothes...
Now that I think of it... we have to take care of the Executioner too. What a pain.

Well, let's go into the dungeon.

This time we get the Clashing Grounds.

I am feeling adventurous...

And here we are in the snowy area.

Even with such a difference in levels we are still pretty much destroying the enemies.

Soon it's the first puzzle. This time, it's the block swapping/gem collection version.

Moving on after the puzzle, we find a chest with new clothes for Eluca.

It's all so very bloody.

Oddly enough, basically around the corner are also clothes for Zhamo.

And the second puzzle too.

At this level, we sometimes get a more advanced enemy in a random battle. It's still not an issue.

Eventually we reach the first boss.

A bunch of spell counters...

...and we're done here.

I don't know why I chose you.
But I don't hate you at all.
You don't?
I don't. Really.
...Even though I tried to kill you?
The only person I hate... is the Divine King.
Stop spouting nonsense!
You had no choice but to follow his orders.
You didn't do it because you wanted to.

Anyway, moving on to the scorchy part of the dungeons...

We are interrupted by a sudden earthquake!

A rock has fallen in between Eluca and Zhamo...

There is no way I can get there now. We'll have to find another place to meet up.
Okay. Be careful, Eluca.
...You too, Zhamo.

So Eluca continues on her own.

Around the corner is Escher who apparently also got separated from musiea.

Same here. Just my luck.
Can I ask you something, Escher?
Why did you choose Musiea? You don't have to answer if you don't want to.
I don't know why I chose her.
I've known my share of women... but I have no idea why she's here.
...I see.
I mean, she's got completely the wrong idea about me.
I'm not the one who killed her family. It was a traitor from my old organisation.
Yeah... you know what kind I mean, right? Anyway, Musiea saw me taking care of that traitor.
So that's why she misunderstood.
Yeah, pretty much. So, why did Zhamo choose you?
He says he doesn't know.
How are you and he connected anyway?

The Divine King who leads our country has been running
a cruel and oppressive regime, and he has been driving
people into poverty. But if anyone expressed the slightest
dissatisfaction, he would have them executed as a warning
to others.

As head soldier of his personal guard, it was my duty to
perform those executions. Zhamo and his family were accused
of plotting to overthrow the king, and were sentenced
to be executed for treason.

WHen I was young child, Zhamo's father recognised my skill
with a sword, and rescued me from the streets. Thanks to
him, I eventually went on to work as a soldier at the royal
palace. He and Zhamo's mother treated me like a daughter.
So when Zhamo was born, it felt like I had gained a brother...
Zhamo's family was the only family I knew... And yet...

Go on.
Right before the execution, his parents told me this.
"Don't hesitate."
"If you hesitate, you'll also be charged with treason."
They were worried about me right until the moment they died...
...when I killed my own family...
So, why is Zhamo still alive then?
All I remember is that I was just about to cut off Zhamo's head. And when I woke up, we were here.
I see. So you killed his parents.
And yet, he said he didn't hate me... I can't understand that child.
I think you're the child here.
Yes, you may have been the one holding the sword. But it was the king who gave the order to kill.
So you are saying that I'm not at all responsible because I pledget allegiance to a madman?
No, you're responsible too. The problem is how you handle it.

The conversation is interrupted.

Finally, we move on. This was a very long break.

And what better time for a puzzle. For some reason, this one is quite hard.

As before, this removes one part of the obstacle.

After solving this, much easier puzzle...

...we can go over...

...and meet with our friend the double headed tiger!

Same strategy as before.

This nets us absolutely nothing:

So, it's interesting to note that the character backgrounds in this timeline are not exactly the same as the ones seen previously. In any case, next time we'll go through the final dungeon and then presumably fight against Escher and Musiea...