Part 86: There's no Time to Waste!
So, as I've hinted last time, fate of the world hangs by a thread--seems like the right time to do some sidequesting, right?
We have a whole bunch available to us, and I have been doing some of the less interesting ones in the background (the ones that are simple mini-boss fights with nothing to distinguish them). But now we have come to a few that actually have real content in them, so we'll do a few right now.
One interesting thing to note is that the game actually tells you which approximate character level each task is geared towards, so you don't waste time on overly powerful enemies that you can't possibly beat. Unfortunately, still a large number of sidequests is not yet accessible to us due to this as they're intended to be done after the next plot segment since we cannot level up fast enough yet--levelling goes a lot slower than in the original game, mainly because this game is not so quick to let you access higher level enemies to grind against!
Still, there are a few interesting tasks we can do right now, so let's get to it.
The first one involves Darwin and Orlando going on a bit of practice...
(Oh and before I forget... all of these are completely optional and you don't need to do any of this in order to finish the game's plot. But most of it is fun, so I don't see why you wouldn't do it.)
Before we go, though... it's been a while but recall that every character has some kind of special skill that they can apply on the field. We never really got to see if Orlando has one, and if he does, what it is. Well, he does have one and it's called "Unlock":
So... instead of buying keys like in the last game, we can simply take Orlando into a dungeon and have him unlock chests. This is actually fairly pointless as he does not expend any kind of resource to do this, he just needs to be around. So... yeah, not that interesting, could have just made the chests unlocked.
This is where we are going for the practice.
If we keep going, a bit later...
Yeah, that's what I thought. Sorry. Just wanted to double check.
You know, some of those mercenaries were pretty rough around the edges. The regular soldiers looked down on us.
But we all shared the same sense of duty and pride in being members of the same team, fighting for our country.
What about Commander Orgus?
He's gone too.
Frankly, it just doesn't feel real yet. It's like death wouldn't've been enough to stop that guy, you know?
Oops--didn't mean to get so chatty. Let's keep moving.
And if we keep moving, we eventually get to this guy...
This is nice, but...
...actually his Lv. 2 limit break is simply the same multi-hit attack like what Darwin has. I mean it's fine, won't go to waste or anything, but still, not very imaginative.
In any case, our opponent is another one of those hard hitting apes with Chinese names.
This quest is actually intended for characters that are on a level slightly below ours, so is not too hard.
Although he still is a pretty strong hitter.
So we trade blows, until...
These enemies do give good EXP/SP so you may wish to use the Apple items to double them if you feel like it.
And that's about it for this one.
* * *
Our next quest does not involve fighting. You may recall the original Flavour research quest where we had to get 10 chocolates to Lessica. Well, this one is the same, except we need 10 jars of plum jam. The difficulty here is that you can't actually buy this item, so you have to go and fight the monsters that have it as random drop instead. But by this point we have various skills that enhance the frequency of drops and rare drops, so this is still easily done. Once we bring them back to her...
Well, that was a little disappointing since her dialogue was almost the same as previously. At least we get another one of those recipes for skills.
There is one more of these food quests for Lessica, but we'll do it in the next round.
* * *
Now, here's a much more interesting quest!
For some of these, you have a predefined pair of characters that are doing it and can't choose your party freely. In this case, Araki is one...
...and Li Hua the other.
We are of course going to Araki's favourite place. Where else.
Our destination is at the very end of the dungeon...
...in this field of red flowers.
Before we can take it...
Oops, looks like we have to fight a monster!
So it's one of those trees with eyes. Zahhāk (ضحاک) is apparently an evil monster from Iranian mythology. Not sure why it's represented here as a tree, although the fact that it has multiple eyes is not completely inaccurate.
We're going to start with the usual thing.
Thing to note is that this guy heals for about 900 HP at the end of every turn. This means, you need to keep attacking, otherwise he may get himself back up to full health if you're slow!
He doesn't really hit too hard...
...although he does have some spells.
Which we can exploit with an elemental counter.
He can inflict blind status on us...
...but I think that does not affect attacks done as skills, only "real" physical attacks. So... Araki can continue to do what he's been doing.
Finally, we build up enough charge for Li Hua to use her Lv. 2 limit break. I am going to have to disappoint you a bit here again...
...because it's just another multi-hit physical attack like Darwin and Orlando have. Still, they all hit for 10,000+ so no complaints. Also this one is the best looking of all three!
After a couple of rounds of that, we're done. But check out that EXP! It's crazy. Too bad you can't do this over and over.
So we got the sword that we came here for.
In the end, she got blamed for the whole revolt, was branded as a traitor, and disposed of right here.
(Tomoe... To be treated like a traitor and buried here, all in the name of saving your country...)
(I just gotta laugh. You were such an idiot...)
(But I didn't forget dealing you that blow. And I don't regret it.)
(You and me, we both fought for the things we believed in. Nothing to regret about that.)
(I'll be taking your blade. I told you my real name, after all. You should allow me this much.)
Interesting. Let's check out the weapon, because it's an actual sword that Araki can equip!
So this is actually pretty good! It lowers his HP/MP by 500/50 (which is not a problem because he has plenty of HP already and doesn't use all that much MP anyway), but gives a good increase in attack, plus it has a poison effect on it! All in all, this is usable.
* * *
Our next quest also involves Li Hua. Interesting to note that suggested level is 65, whereas Li Hua is around 50 or so at this moment. Nevertheless, this is actually still doable even if you are a little underleveled, if you prepare yourself correctly.
So this time, it's Lessica who will be joining us. You might wonder what happens to the Lessica that is supposed to be standing next to the teleporter in the main hall... Well, have a look:
While actual Lessica is in our party, she's replaced by a temporary cardboard cutout, borrowed from Piu-Piu (and no you can't talk to her). For some reason, I found this absolutely hilarious.
The destination is obviously Li Hua's favourite place.
Our destination is that other field of flowers.
You can see the boss up there on top.
So, it turns out, Li Hua needs to fight this one alone! As you can see, our enemy is... uh... Tiger, apparently.
Because why not.
He hits hard, and this is even more an issue when you don't have a second person in your party. But, as I've said, even underleveled you can still survive this. This battle is simply about being able to withstand heavy physical damage while not having a second person to heal you. Therefore, you need to equip any attack or defence increasing skills, plus don't forget to put that bracelet that gives extra 1000 HP on Li Hua. This battle is also relatively fair, in the sense that Tiger will sometimes spend his turn on some sort of support spell that doesn't deal damage, thus giving you a chance to catch a breath and heal.
His physical defence is also pretty high, so Li Hua is not doing much damage with regular attacks...
...so it's a matter of surviving until you can do this.
In the end we win... and get all that crazy EXP.
And this is all for now, next time we'll keep going with the plot until we are levelled enough that we can tackle more side quests. You might be wondering, for example, what happened to all those Pandas that we chased off... We'll find out soon, I promise.