Chapter 9: 2,300 A.D. and 1,000 A.D.
All right, let's get back to this. The Black Omen's one of the better, but also straight-forward dungeons in the game. The design is great, the EXP is great, and the treasure is great. Neatest thing about it is that you can run through it multiple times! All it requires is a keen mind!
It exists in all times save for 65,000,000 B.C. (as it hadn't risen then) and the End of Time (where the world doesn't even exist, anyway). The trick is to go through it in descending order. Blowing through it in 1,000 A.D. means it's still there for another trapse through in 600 A.D.
First up is 2,300 A.D.
This scene isn't time-specific, but it reliant on when you first go to the Black Omen. There is one line that is time period-specific, I believe.
Lavos has already struck the world by 2,300 A.D. Neat, eh?
The queen then fades away, and we're left to deal with the turrets.
Unfortunately for us, the Black Omen is locked up tight in 2,300 A.D.! Lavos has already destroyed the world, there's nothing hanging around here anymore.
But after a short hop, skip, and a time jump...
The Black Omen
Queen Zeal: We are immortal! We shall live forever with Lavos, who devours this planet even as he sleeps. Within 999 years he'll become the ruler of this world. The Black Omen is a path which leads to Lavos. It is a shring which provides us with limitless power. As long as the mighty one reigns, your dreams are hopeless!
The Black Omen houses some of the hardest enemies in the game. Or, at least, they would be...
If one wasn't fully prepared.
The Black Omen also has one of the better designs for a dungeon, in my opinion.
The technology seems to be very raw, and barely supportive of humans.
As if the entire thing was built for the sole purpose of providing Lavos with energy, which isn't too far off from what it IS supposed to do.
There's also a fair degree of Undersea Palace architecture in here. After all, this place used to Be the Undersea Palace.
It's worth mentioning that _____ with the Rainbow, and Toad with the Masamune II and Hero's Medal results in a ridiculous number of critical hits. Jimmy, already, isn't a great physical character, but he gets completely eclipsed by the other two.
These bastards seal all of your skills and items, leaving you only to attack. If you defeat the center eye, then the other two retreat. So always beat the smaller eyes first for maximum experience!
Palette swaps of earlier enemies with no new moves. Just blast 'em away.
Teleporters are this dungeon's way of saying "now we can be completely nonsensical in design!"
Familiar, isn't it? There's three elevators, only this one has enemies to tango with on the way down.
More running around... there isn't any gear, except for two important pieces, to be had in this dungeon, just good items, and lots of Speed Tabs. Why Speed Tabs? I don't know.
Oh, and money.
Yeah baby. There's also Nova Armor here and a Haste Helm. The Haste Helm is nice, but not as important as the other pieces. All of the guys have ultimate or next-to ultimate armor equipped, now. The girls are just kinda floating around with Aeon Suits and Prism Helms.
As much as this seems like the end of the dungeon, it isn't! This is more like the halfway point. You can restock on items here, but if you're really fucked over by this place, one of the Nus can teleport you out. We stock up on awesomeness, and set out for badassery.
Things really start ramping up here.
.. though they've got to be desperate to stop us if they're breaking out the Gato recolors.
As you can see, the dungeon's taken a turn for the more gothic, eerie tileset of the Undersea Palace.
I take this slow conversion as technology becoming less and less important as the energy feeding into Lavos gets more raw and magical, thus negating the purpose of having all of those machines this deep in the Omen.
We're getting close.
But there's one last room to navigate, with something that barely qualifies as a puzzle.
These pillars force you to navigate the room in a zig zag fashion, taking you across the entire thing. Lucky for us, there's plenty of items to be had, and enemies to destroy.
At the end of this room, we're given another Giga Mutant to tango with, who is easily taken down.
That elevator actually goes up. Design stuff. Whatever.
They like tossing these homeboys at us.
A TerraMutant, this time! It falls like all of the others.
Surprise surprise, this rock ISN'T for Jimmy. It lets you access a Triple Tech between ?!?!?, Mark, and Velma.
At last, we have reached the end of the dungeon.
But not before...
It's no stronger than they were on Death Peak. That is to say it dies quickly.
I don't really understand the purpose behind having holograms of all of the characters (except for Jimmy!) floating around here.
I just don't get it.
And here we are. The Mammon Machine has seen better days. Remember, we stabbed an early version of the Masamune into it long ago. I think that's partly where the sword gets its tremendous power, in addition to Toad's BURNING SPIRIT!
Queen Zeal: Gone forever!!! For you there will be no tomorrow! The Black Omen transcends time and space, waiting for Lavos to awaken! Destiny has led you here. And here you shall rest forever, unless you can defeat me, and smash the Omen!
Let's kill this bitch.
Zeal and the Mammon Machine Fight
Daily Motion Link / Backup
She's just upset that WE KICKED HER ASS TO THE CURB.
This is the moment where Jimmy busts out the cool.
Anyone who told me not to use Jimmy can go fuck themselves.
A boss fight after a boss fight. There's more, too! Hooray!
Zeal's the hardest non-final boss in the game to fight. If you hit either of her hands, she shaves your HP to 1, and steals all of your MP.
This makes Jimmy a terrible, terrible choice for this battle, as he has no single-hit Techs. Oh well!
Still, _____ and Toad pump out roughly 2500 damage per attack. That kinda makes up for it.
Soon enough, she falls.
And then everyone died.
Wait a second! That's water! How did Lavos "break" water?!
This is a loooooong string of boss battles, where Lavos simulates each boss we've faced, up to the Black Omen's bosses. The early bosses are dispatched with a simple Luminaire or other equally world-destroying skill. The later ones take just a bit longer, but still fall just as easily. Once that's done...
That's right, kids. We're here.
Let's turn around.
The End of Time