Part 10: Polishing Off PalaishLat time, Euchre started exploring Palaish Shrine and scouted a miniboss.
Music: Seeking Treasure
This time, he'll be starting where he recruited said miniboss and finishing Palaish Shrine.
To begin with heading to the southwest corner of the hub room yields progress in the form of a staircase.
On the right there's a brown chest which generates a rare seed that might get used eventually. It's a shame that synthesis eventually makes hitting stat caps trivial, otherwise this would be much more helpful.
There's also this device which is used to raise the central area up to Level 4. According to the Dungeon Directory back on Level 1, this is the highest floor in the shrine. Looks like Euchre's almost done here.
Before that, though, he still has to make his way through the gauntlet of monsters on the way to the Nexus Chamber. This one just stands there, menacingly.
Music: Monster Battle
We'll be going over Lump Wizards when Euchre finds one roaming around on the field, but the other monster, Fencing Fox, is primarily a support enemy in terms of abilities.
Sag is just as good in the hands of wild monsters as it is in the hands of Euchre's party. If you'll remember, it lowers the Attack stat of one monster drastically. Anyone it hits will be doing much less damage than normal.
They can also cast Heal, which is really awful at this point. Remember, the enemy version heals for around 13 HP instead of the 30-ish that Euchre's version gives.
Music: Seeking Treasure
It goes to the same place that all of Euchre's new monsters go.
Continuing on the only path, Euchre runs into some Lump Wizards. Let's see what they can do, shall we?
Music: Monster Battle
They're also support, unsurprisingly - after all, that's what usually happens to mages in Dragon Quest games. Kadim is the multi-target Wisdom-reducing spell. It's bad.
Kaping, meanwhile, is the opposite of Kadim, being the multi-target Wisdom-increasing spell. It's also bad.
The only thing that Lump Wizards can use Kaping to help with is Woosh, which is a tier 1 spell. It hits everyone, which is basically all it has going for it. It also seems to have more damage variance than normal.
Of course, all those other spells pale in comparison to this spell, Zing. Zing is extremely annoying in the hands of wild monsters.
Here's why. Zing has a chance (around 50%, I believe) of reviving a single monster with half their maximum HP. This makes targeting Lump Wizards first a very good idea.
Music: Seeking Treasure
All this doesn't really matter with Euchre's current capabilities, though. All his monsters have decent enough stats that they can one-shot a Lump Wizard from half HP. This one doesn't get one-shot and instead gets added to Euchre's growing collection.
Past the hall with the Lump Wizards is the central area again. This should be the last time Euchre has to pass through it if the Dungeon Directory is to be believed.
The only way out this time is through the southeast corner. Ignoring the stairs for now, there's a new monster around here. It's not very well disguised.
In fact, there are two of them. This one is guarding some real treasure chests, so it's the one that's going to be taken out.
Music: Monster Battle
Canniboxes are a pain to fight, plain and simple.
The first thing they have is a pretty strong normal attack for their status as non-miniboss encounters. It shouldn't be too bad to work around.
This, though? Not so much. Remember how Poison was terrible? This doesn't inflict Poison. Instead it inflicts Envenomate, which might actually be kind of dangerous. 12%-ish of your maximum HP in damage per turn is fairly nasty, especially in combination with relatively strong attacks.
That's not the worst of it, though. They also get Whack.
Thankfully this casting of it failed, but if it hadn't Wildcard would have been in major trouble. You see, Whack inflicts instant death. Due to the scarcity of revival items and lack of revival spells at this point having a monster die to Whack means having to back out of the shrine and heal up at the nearest scoutpost.
Music: Seeking Treasure
Thankfully this Cannibox doesn't cast it again and gets put into storage posthaste.
The first chest that the Cannibox was guarding contains a Strong Medicine, which will continue not to be used.
The second contains a Seed of Strength. Again, these are pretty rare, so it's appreciated just in case.
Up the stairs that Euchre ignored earlier is a landing of little consequence. What it leads to is not, however.
The end is in sight! You might think that the Fencing Fox is a mandatory fight, but it's really not. You see, its hitbox isn't actually wide enough to block the whole bridge. By hugging the wall it's possible to stroll right past it. The same goes for the one from earlier.
And that's it for navigating Palaish Shrine. There should be just these treasure chests and the inevitable boss fight left. Speaking of treasure chests...
...this one contains a much-appreciated Yggdrasil Leaf. Again, these are pretty rare.
The one on the right, being blue, contains a darkonium crystal. That's half of them collected already.
The only thing left to do is to go through the door and see what the shrine's sentinel will be this time.
Expect no mercy and show none in turn!!
And so the game's third boss fight begins.
Music: Boss Battle
Moosifer here is considerably more threatening than Golem, mostly due to having more options than just psyching up and attacking.
The tactics Euchre will be employing here will be the same as usual. Wildcard will be Psyching Up to 100 Tension, then using Oomph and Lightning Slash. Litwick will be attempting to stop Moosifer's damage output, lower his defence and make him go last with Weakening Wallop, Helm Splitter and Slowing Slug respectively. Monarch will be on healing duty, preferably on auto-battle mode.
The first ability of note is Frost Slash. It's probably best not to bring anything weak to Crack, since they'll probably get wrecked by this.
It does pretty good damage even without hitting a weakness. That's over half of Litwick's HP gone.
What's more worrying is this. A single Psych Up will raise Moosifer's damage enough to potentially one-shot a monster with a low maximum HP.
Specifically, it increases damage to 170% of normal. Thankfully all of Euchre's monsters are at high enough HP to survive a hit of this magnitude. Healing off this damage, though, is much harder without access to Midheal. Keeping Strong Medicines handy might be useful if that spell hasn't been learned yet.
Moosifer's next ability is Boom, the second tier Bang spell.
It's mostly used to soften up monsters for a physical attack. Again, this can be difficult to heal off because of the single-target nature of most healing spells right now. Fortunately Multiheal eliminates this problem.
And that's basically it for Moosifer. An Oomphed Lightning Slash at maximum tension obliterates it.
Just like Golem before him, Moosifer drops a spell manual. We'll see what that one does later.
Hey, remember when the same exact thing happened to Golem? Good times.
Give me now the power...
Just like back at Xeroph Shrine, the floor starts shining...
Music: Sanctuary (Variation)
...and when the light clears, Wildcard's form has changed once again.
Now I am the holy cluboon - and more powerful than ever! Perhaps you think it strange... ...that I am able to transform myself in this way?
There is something I must tell you. I think you have long suspected that I am no normal monster.
At least Wildcard is finally acknowledging it. To be fair, the in-universe monster library wouldn't be able to tell Euchre that Wildcard is definitively the Incarnus, but it's still entirely possible to pick up on the obvious clues.
Memories of the Incarnus and its actions survive only in ancient legends... ...but should my true identity be discovered, panic would sweep over these islands. You must vow to keep my identity a secret. Tell no one!
But enough talk... We must go to the next shrine!
Well then, that's Palaish Shrine done with. Now what?
How about having a look at that spell manual that Moosifer dropped? It teaches Evac, which allows Euchre to escape from any dungeon, returning to the entrance. It's pretty useful! Since this duplicates the effect of Exodust, that's another item that's obsoleted by one of Euchre's spells.
Now that's done with, how about some synthesis?
Cluboon gets synthesised with Euchre's new Angel Slime, 02, since it turns out that 02 is the wrong polarity for what I want to use it for and so it needs using up.
Now Wildcard has the Skills of all three of his forms so far. Cluboon is the earth-elemental version of the Skill, and it also gives Bang for some reason.
Incidentally, this gives us a look at the names of all of Wildcard's forms so far. There's Wulfspade, Hawkhart and Cluboon. Whatever his next form is, it's most likely going to have something to do with diamonds.
The next synthesis I want to do is to fuse Litwick with an Angel Slime.
I decide that a Mud Mannequin is the best option in this synthesis, so that's what gets made. Geno here is going to help in more ways that just battling.
Since Wildcard doesn't want to fight in the arena on Xeroph Isle, Euchre's going to be making a competent mage to help instead. The Spitnik, Viroid, is a Material monster just like Litwick was, so the first two results are the same. We're going with the other one.
It just so happens that this results in a Dragon Slime. It's going into the active party for levelling purposes, replacing Wildcard for now.
The main attraction here is Frizz & Bang. The other two are mostly just there to fill slots, but Zap Ward could be useful later for Magic Miser and Magic Scrooge.
Those are the only bits of synthesis I want to do for now. How about heading over to Xeroph Isle to get some of that battle tournament done?
Music: Appearance of the Town
First off, though, Euchre's stopping off on Domus Isle to see what new things people have to say.
Department store reopens for business! All scouts welcome! Make sure you check it out!
As it turns out, though, there isn't all that much to see. It seems that most people are saying the same thing as they were last time Euchre came here.
Euchre hasn't seen this guy before, though. You might actually recognise the name, though - Tryger was third on the Monster Scout Challenge rankings the last time Euchre checked on them.
Maybe a bit TOO realistic for the little girl's liking... She still hasn't calmed down.
Tryger is dressed up as a Weartiger, although he does seem a little too big for a human. Maybe he actually is a Weartiger, contrary to his claims. In any case, Weartigers are Rank D Beast monsters and sadly aren't found in the wild.
That's basically it for Domus Isle. As I said, there isn't much here that hasn't been seen before. You know what is new, though?
An uncharted island! This one only had one new monster:
Music: Monster Battle
She-Slimes! I have no idea what these do because Euchre didn't have Wildcard out at the time and just scouted one on the first turn. It's probably something Frizz-related based on their Trait.
Now that Euchre has an actual She-Slime it's getting the same name as the one from the synthesis demo. Yes, I'm uncreative.
Anyway, that's all for this island. I couldn't find any treasure chests, so Bo is the only reward for finding this one.
So, the Xeroph Isle battle tournament. This is the first battle in Rank E, which is the only Rank that's available to start with. It costs 10 gold coins to attempt.
Unfortunately there's no way to have Euchre's monsters hold back in order to see what these guys can do due to the forced AI control, so they get promptly destroyed. My guess is that they would do roughly the same things as their wild counterparts.
This is the next battle in Rank E. Again, there's no option to hold back, so they're all defeated too. At a guess I'd say they would use Psyche Up a lot.
This is the final Rank E battle, and it's just as simple for this team as the others. It's notable, though, that with each battle in a given rank the monsters get stronger, at least in terms of stats. Unlike the other fights in Rank E I have no idea what these guys can do.
The reward for completing Rank E is a Seed of Life and the ability to attempt Rank D.
Rank D costs 50 gold coins to attempt. In this fight, the Chimaera uses Dazzle in order to capitalise on its team's already high evasion. It's kind of annoying if it manages to hit.
The Firespirits here love to waste your MP by defending, while the Dancing Flame likes to cast Bang. They're a mild annoyance.
The King Kelp in this fight is the most annoying monster, since it's able to use Fuddle Dance to potentially confuse all of Euchre's monsters. Other than that, they're fairly simple.
The reward for completing Rank D is the ability to challenge Rank C and some Metal Claws, a weapon which increases damage done to metal monsters. That'll probably be useful in the future.
Rank C is a bit too much for Euchre's team at this point, but it's available now so I might as well show it off. This first fight is really easy, though. The Muddy Hand has Body Slam, making it effectively kill itself, while the Goodybag has Hustle Dance to heal its party. The Bag O' Laughs probably has some ability too, but I didn't see it.
This is where the fights get annoying. These Slime monsters are surprisingly bulky, and the Healslime has Kabuff to make them even bulkier. The only hope that Euchre's monsters have is spells. Oh, and the Slime can use Helm Splitter which gives it the potential to beat Euchre's team more quickly. Hatchet Man too, for that matter, which is an ability which either misses or inflicts a critical hit. Finally, the Angel Slime is the magical talent of the group with its Swoosh spell, which is the second tier of Woosh.
Somehow Euchre beats them through copious use of Bang from Dragoon, but his monsters have very little MP remaining for the final round.
The final battle of Rank C is, in contrast to the battle of attrition that was the second round, over very quickly.
Three monsters that can do 50-ish damage per turn each tends to do that. It would probably be best to try again later, when Euchre has better monsters and higher levels.
Is there anything else to do, then, before moving on? Of course! How about going back to Scoutmaster Shuffles and completing his next Proficiency Test question?
This was the last task that Euchre was assigned, if you'll recall.
Geno is an excellent candidate for this. The reward for this question is really nice:
A darkonium crystal! There are only four more to go now until Euchre can enter the Monster Scout Challenge finals.
Oh, right, the next question. This one is pretty pricey at 500 gold coins, but the reward is probably going to be worth it.
That's probably not going to happen for a while because of the grinding involved. Jumping Jackals are Beast family monsters high up in Rank D. The "easiest" way to get a Jumping Jackal, that is the method with the fewest syntheses, is to combine a Skelegon with a Beast family monster which has a lower ID.
That seems like a good stopping point for this time. Next time, Euchre will be heading off to Infern Isle in search of more darkonium and more shrines.
Extra: The Monster Library
She-Slimes have the Skills Frizz & Zap and Agility Boost when scouted and just Frizz & Zap when synthesised. They have the Trait Frizzmeister and are immune to Frizz.
Frizz & Zap is another one of the two-element Skills. Like the others, there are three tiers of it. Unfortunately it runs into the opposite problem that Crack & Woosh did - both of its elements are strictly single-target. Of course, it's still by no means a bad Skill.
Dragon Slimes have the Skill Dragon Lore and can't be scouted. Being flying monsters, they have the Trait Artful Dodger. They're also immune to both fire and ice breath.
Dragon Lore is the same as it was on Green Dragons back in Part 9.
Fencing Foxes have the Skills Guerrilla and Attack Boost when scouted and just Guerrilla when synthesised. They have the Trait Early Bird, which makes sure they always go first unless another monster has the same Trait. They're also immune to Confusion.
Guerrilla was first found of Mischievous Moles all the way back in Part 2.
Canniboxes have the Skills Fear-monger and Defence Boost when scouted and just Fear-monger when synthesised. They have the Trait Desperado, doubling their critical hit chance when they have less than 1/4 of their HP left, and are immune to Whack.
Fear-monger was on Bags O' Laughs back in Part 7.
Mud Mannequins have the Skill Dancer and can't be scouted. They have no Trait and are weak to Frizz and immune to Dazzle.
Dancer is a skill that unsurprisingly teaches exclusively dance Skills. There's Dodgy Dance to increase evasion, weird Dance to remove MP from an enemy, Fuddle Dance to confuse all enemies, and Tap Dance to steal MP from an enemy. Then there's Sultry Dance to attempt to make a single enemy miss their turn, Ban Dance to stop enemy dances, Hustle Dance for multi-target healing, Death Dance to inflict instant death on all enemies, and Kerplunk Dance which kills the user and fully heals and revives their allies. Overall Dancer is a pretty helpful support moveset. There's status effects, decent healing, and MP drain, the last of which is especially helpful when playing through the story. The main problem is that it can be shut down easily by Ban Dance or Break-Dance Beat, but those don't tend to get thrown around much.
Lump Wizards have the Skills Bang & Woosh and Woosh Ward when scouted and just Bang & Woosh when synthesised. They have no traits and are immune to all attack magic. Yes, really.
Bang & Woosh is yet another two-element magic Skill. Yet again both of its elements are purely multi-target, but it can still work.
Woosh Ward is another Ward Skill like Zap Ward was on Angel Slimes. Instead of two Zap Guards it gives two Woosh Guards, and the stat boosts it gives are also different - 15 Wisdom, 5 Agility, 10 MP and 10 HP. It still gives Magic Scrooge and Magic Miser, though.
Cluboon has the Skill Cluboon and the Trait Psycho. Being the Incarnus form attuned to Earth it's weak to fire and healed by earth. It's also immune to Sap and other defence-lowering effects.
The Skill Cluboon, like Wulfspade and Hawkhart, only goes up to 75 points before capping. It teaches Bang and Boom for its attack spells, Bomb Slash for its physical attack, Stone's Throw and Boulder Bash for its Earth attacks, and Earth Guard for its passive ability. Finally, Buff and Sap appear as the support spells. Overall Cluboon is just as viable as any other tier 1 Incarnus Skill, and Buff and Sap are pretty good spells to have.
Cluboon II, meanwhile, has Boom and Kaboom for its attack spells, Blast Slash for its physical attack, Boulder Bash and Boulder Toss for its Earth attacks and Earth Guard and Bang Guard for its passive abilities. Unsurprisingly Kabuff and Kasap are the support spells this time. This time, Kabuff is almost entirely better than Buff because it's desirable to have increased defence on all monsters instead of just one or two. Kasap is not so lucky; the situations where it tends to get used are against a single target. It's still a good Skill for attacking, though.
Extra 2: Synthesis Recipes
Incarnus Family + Material Family = Cluboon (Rank ???, not scoutable, not available through generic synthesis)
It's another Incarnus form! That's really all there is to say. It's mostly irrelevant right now, but if you need the Cluboon Skill back you can switch over to it.