The Let's Play Archive

Chaos Rings

by ivantod

Part 40: Ending the Loop

One last "real" chapter ending...

Of course, first the optional bosses. I did some grinding and found the following equipment in the process:

A weapon for Olgar.

And one for Vahti. Trimurti (त्रिमूर्तिः) is the "Great Trinity" of Hindu deities: Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. "Murti" is actually a physical representation of a god (such as a statue, but it doesn't have to be). Lingam (linga) however, is typically Shiva's murti, so I'm not sure how this name even makes sense, but... Fun fact: like most other Indo-European languages, English too gets its words for numbers from Sanskrit, so "tri" (त्रि) really does mean "three"!

Some clothes for Olgar.

Larme Déesse is bit of an ungrammatical way of saying "Tear of a goddess" in French language (it should be "larme de la déesse" but who's counting)

And so after the bosses were defeated, I got a new set of equipment:

"Propateer" is a bad transliteration of Greek word προπάτωρ (propator) meaning "forefather". So this name makes sense in the context of the plot. It also has a special meaning in Gnosticism.

And another one for Vahti, with a somewhat symmetrical name. Actually I preferred the equipment names from the previous chapter, those were more fun to figure out with their wacky translations.

Well, anyway, we need to get moving to the real ending of this chapter...

You may be right. Does this mean we've proven our eligibility?
I can't believe this has happened... That this path even existed...
The Ark can't have much time left. Let's go end this.

I agree. This has been going on for a while now, and it really is the time to start moving towards the finish.

Inside, as always, we have three elevators to take in turn.

It's time for the boss gauntlet, one last time. First is the executioner.

Let's see...

Um... he just healed and negated all damage we did!

Let's try again...

Nope, does not work. What's happening?

There is one thing. Hit him with enough power to overcome his regeneration.
Can you do that?
I'm not sure. If I can build up my strength to its max... I just might.
But, in order to do that...
I know. I'll keep him busy while you build up your strength.
Can you do that?
Just watch me!

So, Olgar has gone away for a while, and the idea is that now we need to survive several turns (about 5-6) with Vahti alone. We can't damage the Executioner so this is just a matter of staying alive. Of course at our level, it doesn't even matter, but even otherwise, it would just be a thing where you heal constantly in between turns.

Finally, Olgar returns, and...

That's better!

Uh-oh, this is not so good.

And what do you know, here is the familiar corridor with infodump terminals!


> An organically-grown lifeform programmed to
  ensure that the Ark Arena proceeds smoothly.
  Loaded with advanced A.I. to assist in
  guiding participants.
> Follows commands given by the Almighty.

> Guide participants to proper destination.
> Execute insubordinate participants.
> Judge participants' eligibility to open
  the Final Door.


> An organically-grown lifeform programmed to
  ensure that the Ark Arena proceeds smoothly.
> Follows commands given by the Almighty.

> Execute insubordinate participants.
> Judge participants' eligibility to open
  the Final Door.


> The two participants that win the Ark Arena
  will be sent back 10,000 years to become
  the First Couple.
  Their superior DNA will be used to reconstruct
  humanity and create powerful warriors.

Currently discovered special abilities:
  Toughness:     Loop #768
  Pyrokinesis:   Loop #782
  Magic:         Loop #1737
  Psychokinesis: Loop #1979
  Teleportation: Loop #2001

> The act of sending living matter back in time
  has a high probability of being noticed by
  the Qualia. Should that happen, the Qualia's
  interference is predicted to speed up the end
  of timespace.
> Therefore, only two people at a time will be
  sent back in order to keep this risk as low as

And yet, you have become even stronger than them over these last 10,000 years...
Yes... but that is far from usual. Most people stop growing after a few decades.
What about Ayuta? He must be one of the very first humans. How can he be so strong!?
Either he continued to grow over the years, like me... Or he continued to modify his genes...


> A means of ensuring that the First Couple can continue
  to produce a predetermined amount of descendants.
> Their bodies will be boosted to superhuman levels
  using the principles of transhumanism. This will
  allow their cells to increase their divisiions at
  a vastly increased rate, even upon taking damage,
  resulting in automatic regeneration.
> Simultaneously, telomere reduction will be employed
  to prevent their cells from aging.

> These effects will likely be neutralized in the
  presence of the Qualia's energy (Quintessence).

We never needed to live this long...
Civilisation has always had its ugly sides.
Even if the rest of the humankind were to die, we could still rebuild it as long as you and I survived...
Perhaps that's what they were thinking...

Eventually, road takes us into the Arena again...

I thought the Agent worked for you!
His programming... malfunctioned. He now seeks the strongest power he can find, for his own purposes.
And... he found out about Mana's ability to convert her lifeforce to power.
We got it. Don't worry. We'll get her back!
Please... take me with you!
I can't. Your injuries are--
I can't lose Mana like this!
...Grab on to my shoulder.

Next elevator, of course, brings us face to face with the Agent!

I am the one who tests the warriors' strength. If a warrior were to be stronger than me, it is only natural that I would need to surpass them.
So, I will seek power for as long as it takes. As long as it takes, as long as it takes, as long as it takes, as long as it takes...
This is... awful. The ark's collapse is even starting to affect this area.
We don't have time for this!

Well, that didn't work.

Olgar, Vahti. Well done on defeating the Executioner and making it this far.
You monster... You will pay for what you did to Ayuta and Mana.
(*gasp* *gasp*)
(This is bad... I've lost too much blood... But I can't let myself die... At least until this fight is over...)
Our earlier battle was to judge if you were worthy of becoming the First Couple.
Now that you've come here, I will judge whether you are worthy of proceeding beyond the Final Door.
The Final Door? Is that where the Qualia is?
If you wish to know the truth you will need to seek the Final Door.
Our master is waiting for you there. She will tell you all you need to know.
Heh heh...
Come on Vahti! This is our chance to finally break free of this damned loop!
Those who seek the Final Door must prove their skill to me.
In order to judge the Final Couple I will hold nothing back.

So it's one more fight with the Agent...

A few hits, not very different.

Why didn't you tell me?!
If I had... you wouldn't have kept going...
Even though... We've finally found a way out of this loop...
I don't care about breaking the loop if you're not there with me!
Now come on, we need to treat those wounds.
There's no need. I can tell... I'm not going to last much longer...
Don't say that!
Don't worry about me... Finish the Agent...
Vahti... Stay with me! Don't leave me!!
Please... Olgar...

Yes, really. We need to fight him one more time, but now with just Olgar. It's still not a problem.

I'm glad... it worked...
Mana, I can't thank you enough.
I want you and Vahti... to live long and happy lives that Ayuta and I can't...
If there really is an afterlife... I'm sure we'll see each other there...
Please take care of our future...

Well, that was a bit dramatic, but now is the time for more...

...infodump terminals.

     THE ARK

> Can travel up to 10,000 years in the past
  using the principles of timespace navigation.
> While the first couple uses that time to
  propogate, the Ark will hide inside the time
  axis, to avoid altering history.

> Contains records of multiple Earths.
  1. Re-creation and preservation of Earth's past
     and historical artifacts.
  2. Lifeform preservation (both sexes).
> Synthesized monsters created from existing
  animal DNA will be placed around the Ark
  to serve as level counters for participants.

Curent number of voyages: 2003

Newest Companions:
  Vieg Valma (Olgar)
  Vahti Pauwell

The only explanation I can think of is, they either wanted to ensure that culture and the environment would continue to progress in a predictable way...
Or they wanted to be able to rebuild the world if the humankind were ever wiped out.
Rebuild the world... Did they really think that spirits would ever allow such an unnatural thing?
Perhaps they figured that the Ark itself was already a great crime towards both the spirits and nature?
If so, I am sure that the ones that built this Ark, including Ayuta, were prepared for whatever consequences it may entail.


> One of the First Woman candidates for the Ark Project
> Genetic Rank: 3
> The original First Woman


> The founder of the Ark Project
> Widely acclaimed for his work on timespace.
> Famously succeeded at preventing plant and animal
  extinction by controlling their time axes. The
  first to discover the existence of the Qualia
  through his research on how lifeforms become extinct.
> Known during his college days by the nickname

So... that's what we'll look like in the future?
...How cute.
Yes. It's cute.
But with those proportions, you'd no longer be able to reach your head.
Washing your hair would be difficult. Though, perhaps, in the future that will be completely unnecessary...
Really? So the reason you haven't washed your hair at all over the last few decades is because you're preparing for the future?
No. I just don't like taking baths.

Okay then. Time to visit the control room now!

It contains the last three terminals...


> A system used to ensure the Ark continues to
  run smoothly.
> Connected test subject Theia Lieberg's cranial
  nerve directly to the Ark central nervous system
  in lieu of A.I.

> Produce a human race capable of matching
  the Qualia.
> Judge participant's ability to open the Final Door.

We began this journey with just the two of us. Perhaps it's fitting that we end it the same way.
Then let us also be the last ones to suffer.
Once we defeat the Almighty, and make our way to the Qualia... we will never be able to come back.
Then it is our task to create a path that our descendants can follow.
They have grown up by now. They no longer need us to protect them.
Indeed. So let's go end this.
Not because the Almighty forced us to... But because it's what we want!


> Separate timespaces that exist in parallel.
  Theoretically, these individual timespaces
  should never cross paths with each other.
> Beginning with the Original Couple, the Ark
  has helped spawn countless new timespaces.
  Of these, 99.99% have been confirmed to have
  been destroyed by the Qualia.

> It is predicted that the Qualia will even cause
  separate parallel timespaces to converge.

And finally...


> A conceptual being of pure energy. Its only
  determinable purpose is to distort space,
  consume everything and bring about
> Once it appears in a timespace, it consumes
  everything until that timespace is destroyed.

Confirmed Data:
> Millions of attempts to destroy the Qualia
  have been undertaken over thousands of
  timespaces, but a powerful corrective force
  always brings the timespace back to destruction.
> Confirmed timespaces destroyed: 64,762.

The Singularity:
> After a long and exhaustive observation,
  a single point in timespace, though to be
  the Singularity, has been confirmed to be
  capable of enabling a sufficiently powerful
  force, in theory, to destroy small amounts
  of energy.
> The primitive human race that exists in the
  Singularity has been confirmed to be incapable
  of producing even the smallest amounts of
  this energy. The Ark will be used to help this
  race develop their ability to produce this

Ugh... my head feels like it's falling apart...
And all from a mere image... I never would have imagined it was this powerful...
C-can we really fight this thing on our own...?
...Is that what the Almighty expects of us? That "something might happen" when we attempt to defeat it...!?
Whether something happens or not...
...we have no choice but to try.
We cannot turn back now... No matter how slim our chances for victory may be.
Echer, Musiea. Eluca, Zhamo. Ayuta. Mana. If we were to give up here...
We could never face them again!
We have an obligation to create a future for our children... And a right to dream of a better one!
The time break this chain of chaos is at hand!
Everything we've loved and lost over the last 10,000 years will give us strength against the Qualia!

Ha ha, ok. There is one more elevator to deal with...

Ayuta said she had been assimilated into the ship...
That means our final opponent is this entire Ark...
Remember how the Agent had broken down? It's likely that Theia's mind is...
...nearing it's limit...
Even if we don't defeat her now, the ark won't last much longer...
So many warriors have died there... including Dante and Rachael...
Father... Mother...
Our children...
I refuse to let anyone else suffer like this again.
It's time to see what lies beyond the Final Door and end this once and for all.

Well, we already know what's there, of course.

Olgar and Vahti. You have triumphed over the other combatants in the Ark Arena.
The Agent has kept me closely informed of your progress.
Now that you have come this far, you must make your way to the Final Door.
Only then will humanity's hopes be answered.
You must have tested us enough by now. How can you still not know our strength?!
The Qualia's strength surpasses anything you can imagine.
You must become stronger than you ever thought possible in order to defeat it.
This is why I came to this planet.
What gives you the right to choose? If you want to defeat the Qualia, you should have done so yourself.
That is impossible. Only humans have the chance of defeating the Qualia that appears in this timespace.
You are talking about the Singularity.
Now, show me your true power. Once I am satisfied, I shall open the path that leads to the Qualia.
But, if I determine that you do not have the sufficient strength for this battle...
Who are you to determine anything!
You say you want to save the universe? Do you think that then gives you the right to whatever you please?
Think about all the horrible things you've done!
We are not your slaves!
I have no interest in your feelings.
All I wish to know is if you are strong of if you are weak.
Well, we are sick of living just to do your bidding.
Are you saying you do not mind being destroyed by the Qualia?
Of course we mind! We're just not going to fight it for you!
We will defeat the Qualia of our own free will!
However you wish to view it is of no concern.
But if you cannot defeat me and the Qualia, you will be destroyed, along with this Ark.

So, fight, I guess?

At last... at long last, the time has come... After nearly eternal despair... your genes have provided a glimmer of hope...
You two... are the Final Couple I have been waiting for...
Once you pass through that door... not even we know what will happen...

I guess now the portal will open again...

I always thought that our DNA wouldn't be enough to defeat it.
That our only choice was to return to the loop and await destruction...
...But I was wrong.
Thanks to our battles with our descendants and with Ayuta... we've become stronger than ever.
It's all thanks to them that we've been able to come this far.
I know now that our potential is not set in stone when we're born.
Nothing is beyond our reach if we truly put our minds to it.
There was a point to all the fighting I've done over the course of my life...
This next battle will determine the fate of all life...

One more time... the closing credits.

And yes... the trusty "To be continued" message. Do you think we'll be seeing it again? You never really know with this game...

* * *

Before we finish the chapter, let's not forget the optional boss fight against our characters' dark selves.

Nothing special about it this time either.

And our reward is two diamond accessories.

So that's all there is to do in this chapter. It was considerably more messy than the other three, what will all the clone business and all that, but what can you do, right?

So... uh... what happens now?