Part 25: Episode XXI: In Which Pirates Are Dicks
Well, that was a fantastic waste of everyone's time. Lynx has probably already set up a litter box in Fort Dragonia by now. I suppose there's no sense in piddling about any longer getting there ourselves.
The trouble is that there is some manner of heavy fog bank surrounding the approach to the mountain chain leading there. It stands to reason the best course of action would be probably to dock over by Arni Village and just walk the length of the beach to reach our destination. But meh... Logic...
The party almost immediately runs into a hulking vessel upon venturing into the fog. Terrific.
"...The ghost ship?"
"Well, what are we waiting for?"
"You are right... We will not be able to navigate our boat in this fog."
"Are you two pulling my chain here...? You seriously want us to climb up on the pirate ship?"
"Ghost pirate ship, amigo."
"No... It's just a normal pirate ship sailing around in shitty weather."
"Then there's nothing to fear."
"Yeah... Yeah sure... Other than the cutthroat, ship raiding murders and rapists sailing about looking to plunder any morons that sail in here. And you want us to just climb on board?"
"If you are lacking the nerve, then you can stay here."
<snort> "I'm just sayin'... This is gonna be stupid. Don't come crying to me when some matey is shivering his timbers up your asshole..."
The party boards the alleged ghost ship... The party's raft has the decency to fall into stasis floating unattended alongside the vessel...
"I'm telling you, there is no such thing as a ghost ship. They're friggin' ghosts! They can already fly. Why the hell would they sail? To keep up appearances?"
The party is immediately surrounded by pirates shortly after boarding.
"Now, I know this is going to a terrific shock, Glenn. But I think... I think they may be...wait for it...FUCKING PIRATES!!"
"Arg! Make way for Cap'n Fargo!"
Dread Pirate...Fargo...makes his way to the deck...
"Well, who cares!?"
"What do you want from us!?"
"That's up ta you..."
"Welp, blondie is an Acacia Dragoon and brother of a war hero or some crap. I'm thinking you can get a pretty penny for him as a hostage. And lucho libre over there is...well...okay he's not going to be going for much truth be told... But, I think we can work out a deal. I used to do a bit of the old pirating myself... Well, privateering really. Back when I was younger. Still kept the bandanna...good look I say. Anyway, I think we ought to..."
"You. Shut your mouth or I'll have yer scrawny ass walking the plank."
"But first things first..."
"I got outvoted on coming up here. I thought it was stupid."
"Don't play stupid! We know you're tryin' ta get ta Mount Pyre! We saw General Viper's and Lynx's ships anchored nearby. Are ya tryin' ta deliver them a message? Is that it!?"
"You do not have the facts straight. We, too, are in hot pursuit of Lynx. Do not hinder our mission to Fort Dragonia."
"Huh? Are ya serious? Explain yerselves."
A fade out to an explanation of events goes here...
"Eh... We've really got nothing better to do, when you get right down to it."
"I have my reasons for investigating Fort Dragonia."
"And I'm the guy with the gizmo that can swap you out with a talking vegetable or a voodoo doll."
"But... Don't ya know you're riskin' yer lives? Don't ya recognize the danger associated with Lynx? He's a monster... A cold-blooded monster... An incarnation of death..."
"You're more of a dog person then, eh?"
"But that was a long time ago... Ever since then, we've had to disguise ourselves as this ghost ship."
"...Okay, what is with fog automatically equaling 'ghost ship'? There's not even any skeletons or spider webs or heads on pikes... You people aren't even dressed up spooky! What? Did you just buy a couple fog emitters and called it a day...?"
"It is the tropics, boy. You tried wearing a rubber mask in mid-September...? It'd sooner get scurvy than sweat that much again."
"So, you're gonna face Lynx, eh...? That's easy to say, but..."
"What are you getting at?"
"'Arg'? It is 'arr!' ARR! Arg is what you say when you stub your toe."
"Aye-aye, Cap'n Fargo!"
"I just wanna see if you youngsters can match up to the likes of Lynx. Just makin' sure you're not all talk. Looks like they're ready. Let's see who says 'arg' now!"
So, Fargo decides the best course of action is to make the party run a gauntlet starting with some magical living armor they had down in the broom closet.
Needless to say, Serge and company pass the test.
"Polly? Really? Polly...? You went with Polly for your bird?"
"Sorry to disappoint you, captain. But I left my crackers at home."
"Serge, I think you should..."
"Oh, COME ON!"
Second up on Fargo's gauntlet is his pet...bird monstrosity, Polly.
Polly isn't too terribly difficult. It has 540 HP and some fairly solid defense stats, making it a battle of attrition more than anything.
The overgrown parrot abomination has only one attack, Flap. Flap is a REALLY hard hitting special tech. We're talking around 75-100+ HP per hit. Meaning at this point in the game none of the characters are likely to survive more than two rounds of it if left unchecked. Bring a Blue innate characters is a very bad idea, as you can knock the damage up a good twenty points.
In addition, as it only has that one attack, it's important to toss out an element between volleys of Flap. Otherwise, the Field Effect strength buff will allow it to pretty much 1-shot anyone after a couple turns. Red innate characters are a good idea for Fargo's challenge as this bag of hot air will cause less damage, plus the third round is against a Blue Innate that lacks overpowered moves.
In any case, ruffling Polly's feathers earns the party their ninth star level. It's about time, I'd say. It is worth mentioning that this fight does not provide any leveling up if we'd taken the path of saving Kid. That route provided a couple of additional boss fights. But, Chrono Cross evens out the playing field's star level distribution to be the same regardless of level.
"'Not bad, mateys... We'll meet again,' ...is what he said."
Polly flies off never to be seen again...
Yes, the third and final round is against manly man Captain Fargo himself. He's not really particularly difficult. Especially with the running crew of Glenn and Greco.
The good captain is sporting 660 HP and some pretty decent physical strength. But, he is really weak against elements. Especially, blue elements. Of which Serge's current party is packing a very nice assortment of at the moment.
Fargo relies mostly on physical attacks and will always piss away his first turn using a strengthen attack to buff his...well, take a wild guess... Seeing as this is a red element, it's best to just build up everyone's element level to full until he man's up with this.
You know how Chrono Trigger had a shit load of double and triple techs which combined multiple special magic abilities to pull off some badass team-up moves...? Well, Chrono Cross has those too... A whole...nine of them... (With a whole two triple techs.) Yeah...for having so many characters, they really dropped the ball on that one.
Glenn and Serge happen to have one of the very few in the game. Glenn's level 3 tech is essentially a red innate version of Serge's Slash&Dash (there's even striking a pose.) So, their team up attack is about what you'd expect. In order to perform a triple tech, all that is required is that both characters have enough of a level built up to perform their corresponding solo tech.
Seeing as this is a red innate tech, coupled with a buff from Fargo using
I like to follow-up with Greco busting out his flying clothesline tech for the victory. Since, how many other times can you use the phrase "so then a luchador clotheslined the pirate in the throat for the win" and be completely serious?
And, in likely the quickest interval of leveling up in the game, Fargo doles out yet another star level. Regardless of path taken back in Guldove, both sides will have 10 Stars by this point in the game. Though, like before, the saving Kid path earns theirs earlier.
"But keep in mind, we be pirates!"
"Oh...son of a..."
"Ugh... T-This was the...wor...st...idea...ever... I-I hate you...Gl...en...n..."
"It's a tranquilizer made from jellyfish stingers. You lubbers will sleep for a while."
Greco and Glenn soon lose consciousness as well...
"Well, that's that! Arg! Stick these land-lubbers in the hold!"
Fargo Official Art - Chicks dig the pirate 'stache.
- Fargo's Japanese name is "Farga". I guess someone on the Squaresoft translation team decided to change it to a slightly more masculine version of the game. Or they were just fans of the Coen Brothers movie of the same name.