Part 30: Episode XVI: In Which There Are Reoccurring Bosses Out the Wazoo
While nothing negative ever happens to Arni Village; will our hero Serge be able to live down the trauma of permanent exile from Fairy-ville in his home world...?
"Man, fuck fairies! Those guys were DICKS!"
"You said it, mate."
That is all that is to be done in Home World for now. The passage north through Fossil Valley is still barred by a Porre military checkpoint and the fisherman will only sail us to and from the unwelcoming Water Dragon Isle. So, straight back to Another World it is.
Now that Serge and friends have doubled their pleasure, doubled their fun, with the right one: Doublemint gum...the fires of hellish Mount Pyre are no longer an obstacle.
Music: Death Volcano
Using the old Water Dragon's blessed frost breath in the vicinity of the molten lava will turn it into an easily passed flat sheet of ice. I...don't think that is how lava works... But, who am I to question fantasy breath mints?
Lacking the whole health devastating magma gimmick, Mt. Pyre is wholly unremarkable. Unless traveling down one of the side paths for some rather middling treasure chests, it is just a linear cavernous path through the heart of the mountain.
Our favorite walking tutorial Solt and Peppor return yet again not far into the caves. They have yet another lesson that comes several hours before what is being taught will be regularly utilized (seriously, the summon tutorial was what...? Fourteen updates ago...? And we're just now getting to the point where we can use summons?)
"I shall blow them to pieces with one of those powerfully power Elements you bought me, Peppor!"
"You mean one of those 'Summoning Elements?' Now we're shaking!"
"How tragically tragic!!! I hate to tell you this Peppor, but... I just remembered that I lost the Summoning Element I had with me!"
"......!? What do you mean, you 'lost it? Don't tell me you dropped it or your dog at it or some other stupid excuse like that! You're asking for a darn good shaking if you do!"
"This is going to be retardedly retarded, isn't it?"
"Thanks for the obviously obvious update, Cap'n Duh."
"No... I'm not that stupidly stupid, you know, Peppor! Actually, if you must know... that centipede monster in the Hydra Marshes stole it from me!"
"No Peppor... When I say stole, I don't mean he picked my pockets or anything like that! I mean he took it from me by laying a 'Trap Element' in which my Element got caught!"
"You know, I think I would go with the getting mugged story over a giant centipede cunningly laying complex traps."
"I think I'd cut the 'a centipede was involved' part out of any story I told. Then again I try not to sound too idiotic when I tell stories."
"Oh...? You could have fooled me."
"Don't ya have some other long, stiff, crawly things to be wranglin'?"
"Well... Errrh... It's difficultly difficult to explain in words, Peppor, so I will give you a demonstration... I will lay a Trap in front of you, Peppor, and then get you to use one of your special Elements."
"Alright, let's give it a go."
"Countdown to disaster in 3... 2..."
Solt lays his trap element. Enemies using trap elements do not actively display what element they are trapping. The only clue is what color innate the trap they lay belongs to.
Peppor follows up with using BlackHole, a rather high end black innate spell. I need to find where they keep buying these things from.
"I used a Trap Element designed exclusively to capture 'BlackHole' Elements! You see...each Trap Element only works on one kind of Element. They can't capture any other!"
"Shaking! Hmm... I see what you mean about having your Summon stolen there... Alright, now I understand. So you can give me back my BlackHole Element now!"
"Oops! I should have told you. I can't give it back to you. You can't get that Element back again unless another monster is silly enough to have its Element captured..."
"Huh......? Well, I guess it doesn't matter seeing as you've got your hands on it now... So...hurry up and use it! Come on...what are you waiting for...?"
"So we'll have to wait until after this battle is over before we can re-equip it and use it!"
"WHY THE HELL DO YOU ALWAYS HAVE TO BE SO DAMNED STUPID?!?! THAT DOES IT!!! YOU'RE IN FOR A REAL SHAKING NOW!!!"
"Aaaaah! I'm sorrily sorry, Peppor! Please don't hit me... too hard!"
At this point Peppor completely loses his shit and beats the fuck out of Peppor for being such a perpetual fuck-up. Much headbutting in the dick ensues.
In any case, after the tutorial the actual battle is extremely easy. Solt and Peppor stick to nothing but mostly harmless physical attacks. The only annoying part is they've got around 1000 HP to widdle down between the two of 'em. This makes for an overly drawn out mop up operation.
And that is that for the penultimate battle with Solt and Peppor. Yeah, we're about to enter the second act of Chrono Cross. So that is a wrap for the stooges' comedy act tutorial sessions.
The remainder of Mount Pyre is entirely lacking in anything noteworthy. So, let's just skip to the chase.
Eventually, the party comes across a huge dragon sticking out from a lava filled crater on the level below. It roars impotently at Serge and company. Kid remarks how it appears to be stuck. Shame, that.
A tiny bipedal dragon wanders onto the scene...
"Uhh...can I take a rain check? I am kinda in a hurry..."
"Sorry, sport. Mandatory filler boss fight time!"
Yeah....this battle is beyond pointless. Yet, it is undoubtedly the most difficult of this segment. Meet the Fire Dragon. Yes, as in the local deity Fire Dragon. That would be this little pint-sized fellow. Don't let his looks fool you...
...the little ball of fire hits like a Mack Truck. It only has a pair of attacks it alternates between. But, both do tons of damage. Fire Dragon's physical attacks bash a good 40-50 HP per hit and he can attack a single ally twice in a row. Which, at this level, is quite a beating.
Its second ability is breathing a huge stream of flame that does a fuck ton of damage. We're talking around 150+ HP at base level. With this, it is VERY IMPORTANT to use an element after he uses this tech.
Otherwise, the Field Effect buff will be enough to start ruining everyone's day in short order. Especially, since it follows up with more physical attacks shortly after using Fiery Breath.
Leena, being our best blue innate character at this point, is highly effective at kicking the red element dragon's ass (though likewise it is very good at kicking her ass.) Old smoke breath is high susceptible to blue innate magic and each use of its flame thrower mimicking attack ought to be punctuated by a blue element in retaliation. Just keeping Leena on the offensive and everyone else keeping her healed and lending support makes for a decent strategy.
Defeating the Red Dragon earns yet another star level for the party.
And so the Mini Dragon vanishes, fully illustrating that battle was utterly pointless. Before we continue on, it is highly recommended the party reallocates their element grids to include the following:
- A low level blue element on Serge's level 1 element grid slot.
- A low level blue element on <secondary character>'s level 1 element grid slot.
- FrogPrince equipped on Leena's highest available element slot.
It is about time to finally bust out one of these hyped summon elements.
Barely continuing twenty yards further into the same room...
Who's ready for some back-to-back boss fight action?
All three Acacia Dragoon Devas make their way from beyond the exit to the cave complex.
Music: Dragon Knights
"Acacia Dragoons? Step aside."
"Seriously, we have kicked all three of your asses already. Can we just save everyone's time and skip this token effort...?"
"HAH! In the name of the Acacia Dragoons, you ain't getting' past here!!!"
"Very eloquently put..."
"THIS WILL BE THE END OF YOU ALL."
"C'mon, big boy. Use an indoor voice. Do you wanna cause a soddin' cave-in?"
"I hate your friends, your mom, your dad, your grandma, your grandpa, your great-grandma, your... your..."
<stamps feet angrily> "I HATE THEM ALL!!!!!! I hate you! I despise you! I REALLY, REALLY ABHOR YOU!!!!!!"
"And I hate kids whining like someone told them it's bed time. But, you don't see my throwing a temper tantrum like someone shat in my cereal. Honestly, between bucket head McALLCAPS, Fabio, and little miss sunshine...you guys are really setting the bar for villainy pretty low."
"Gah hah hah! Looks like she can't stand you. Well, then... It's time for you to die!!!"
Time for the final battle of this dungeon. All three Devas are pooling their resources in hopes of finally defeating Serge and company with the power of teamwork or...something... In any case, this battle isn't particularly difficult at all. The enemies unit's strength is still aligned with the order we fought them. I.E. Karsh is the weakest, ZOAH is mediocre, and Marcy is the strongest.
Though, while the first two have both been working out since the first encounter, Marcy has actually been nerfed for this fight. She is sporting half as much HP and doesn't hit nearly as hard as she did back in Viper Manor. In any case, everyone in the party should just focus on Karsh with physical attacks to build up their element level. The party should hold off on using any of said Elements until the right time.
The three Devas are all now packing a new special Tech (though they all left their initial encounter ones back home.) Karsh has Axial Axe, which basically entails lobbing his axe like a boomerang and hitting everyone in the party for 20-40 HP worth of damage. Not really much of a problem.
Zoah does his best M. Bison Psycho Crusher impression and drills into a single enemy for around 40 HP of damage.
Marcy usually follows up third with StringPhone, which hits everyone for around 30-50 HP worth of damage. This is the attack we've been holding off using elements until. As you'll see, StringPhone is a blue innate attack. This means, the field now has one level of blue on it.
What we do now is to queue up those level 1 blue innate elements on Serge and Kid and fire both of them off in succession. I like to have equipped Cure in the slot for the job, as it means everyone gets a little bit of healing while we set up.
Having Serge and Kid do as suggested right after Marcy's special tech will quickly result in a full blue field effect with minimal chance of one of the other Devas cutting in to mess up the sequence. With the field filled the appropriate shade, Leena can now use the FrogPrince summon. You'll note that the summon is classed at -2 strength (it is a level 7 base element.) Don't worry about that too much. Summons are beefy as fuck, even with a debuff from being equipped on lower levels on the grid.
And so the battle is more or less concluded. Karsh ought to be killed outright coupled with all the physical attacks building up levels.
A single decent red element attack is enough to finish off Marcy. And Zoah basically just needs a single turn of Serge or Leena laying into him to conclude the battle.
And so the party earns their fifteen star level. We're now "14/15" stars. This doesn't mean the party is gimped or anything. Summons consume a star each time they're used. They're not gone forever or anything. Serge just needs to rest at an inn to replenish his level (that's basically the only reason inns exist in the first place.)
I am...really not sure why they even bothered with that mechanic. Summons are highly situational attacks and there will NEVER be a point where you'll burn through all your stars before the party can rest up and reset them. Hell, I'll be lucky to use 15 summons the entire game period.
"Why are you stating that in the form of a question? This isn't Jeopardy."
"KARSH, IT IS ALMOST TIME."
"Dammit! I'll get even for this!"
Karsh and Zoah run away with their tails between their legs...
"Hey, everyone. Just a heads up... Umm...next time let's just...ya know...kill those morons and save ourselves this trouble in the future... That sound like a good plan to everyone...?"
Marcy too runs away toward the exit of the volcano. Serge gives chase. But, his old stalker Harle teleports in front of the party...
"Even so... You still wish to go, Serge?"
"No... Actually, I'd be pretty cool with just taking a nap down by the beach right about now. But meh... Silent protagonist and all that..."
"I know you are lying... But, merci... Just don't die..."
<rubs neck> "Yeah... I am not too worried about the whole dying thing... But... Well..."
Harle teleports away once more... With no more obstacles, the party proceeds forward...
Ah... Fort Dragonia... It has been a while, hasn't it? Hell, last time we saw this place it didn't even have a proper name. I'm getting all nostalgic. Oh well, onward to adventure! After all... What...
Frog Prince Summon
Enter the Dragon Fort
The Frog Prince summon is a direct reference to the Frog King from Chrono Trigger. The Frog King was a monster dwelling in the Cursed Woods during the Middle Ages that appeared in a flashback of Frog has before recruiting him. It stole Cyrus' Hero Medal and got promptly slain for its trouble.