Part 2: Episode II: In Which We Meet General DickbagEpisode II: In Which We Meet General Dickbag
Verse 1 - The Royal Duel
So, in the 18 years since Drakengard 1 the world has seemingly become a much less grim dark place. Hell, this castle looks pretty swanky. I guess not having an endless war against an empire controlled by Lovecraftian horrors from beyond the void trying to bring about the apocalypse can relieve grim dark symptoms a bit.
It's time for the Royal Duel that Eris mentioned earlier. The top brass of the Knights of the Seal are in attendance. Eris we already know. The three other...colorful chaps standing alongside her will get their own introductions later on. This verse is all about the guy in the front: General Gismor. General Gismor is probably my favorite new character in Drakengard 2 for one very good reason: he is such an asshole.
His utter dickbag factor is also helped by the fact he looks like a buff fantasy Billy Mitchell. I actively hate Nowe and everything he does. So good old General Gismor shitting on the kid every chance he can get is A-Okay in my book.
Also in attendance are a very familiar looking blonde boy and the Verdugos from Resident Evil 4. Good to see Todd S. Kennedy getting some work still after that falling out with his brother.
There is a quick sparring match between a couple of red shirt grunts to legitimize the fact there are other combatants in this duel other than just Nowe. Well...it's more of an effort than the first game ever made at least.
I don't think they particularly upgraded the graphics engine much since Drakengard 1. The first game at least had the good sense to keep the in-game cutscenes camera far away from the character models. Drakengard 2 revels in their low poly glory.
Anyway, it is of course Nowe's turn next. And G...the hell happened to the stairs from this camera angle...? It's like someone went hog wild with the Content Aware fill tool in Photoshop and the only thing the program had to work with was three blown up pixels of gray.
General Gismor decides to be Nowe's opponent for this next match since really...the general just wants an excuse to beat on Nowe a bit. Who can blame him?
"General Gismor? You are to be my opponent? I am honored."
"Eris, give the signal."
"Now, dragon boy. Let's see if that reptile raised you well. Show me how strong you have become!"
"Excuse me, sir. But a dragon is not a rep-"
"Who said I was speaking of your little pet dragon...?"
Music: Plains of Pity
"But...that doesn't make sense. There's only the one of me."
"Don't forget. Keep swinging your sword."
"That's the sharp, pointy thing in your hands, in case your limited training has slipped your mind, boy."
Unfortunately, for all his big talk, General Gismor is bound by the rules of the tutorial and thus isn't even a real fight. He's instead training for a few new features of Drakengard 2.
First up: Combos. Each weapon in Drakengard 2 now has several unique* combos. These basically replace the "press triangle when the sword flashes to do a power attack" mechanic of Drakengard 1. There is pretty much never a reason to refrain from using a combo attack, since it is far more powerful than standard blows and more often than not it will come with invincibility frames when the attack is performed.
* Note: Unique combos may be shared between several weapons.
"A crippled, one armed human that was a product of generations of inbreeding. But a human, none-the-less."
"Right! It's time to up the stakes! Prepare yourself!"
This time around, Gismor will actually occasionally attempt to strike Nowe. This is basically just a tutorial for "hey, some enemies cannot be attacked from the front due to shields. Roll around behind 'em to be effective!"
It also gives Gismor an excuse to make fun of Nowe's little girly blows he lands when doing the tutorial correctly.
"Right. Time to get serious."
"Eris, I want you to issue orders to the 151st Airship Squadron to target the boy. Let's see how he handles superior firepower without the aid of his lizard."
"Sir, the 151st is out on an assignment in the Districts. I...do not think that would have been allowed into the tournament anyway, sir..."
"Tch... Then what of the Elite Death Mages of the Forbidden Lands?"
"A-Also not available, sir."
"Blast. Fine then."
"Squad one of the senior knights, to the front!"
About thirty knights pour out to help Gismor fight Nowe...
"I am giving him a chance to prove himself. It is an honor! This is what Oror would have wanted for his 'son.'"
"Come, dragon boy. Let's see if you can fight like a girl."
"Eris, give the signal."
So now Nowe must take on an entire squadron of knights. This might normally pose a problem. But eh...remember, the Knights of the Seal are just the Union from Drakengard 1. The "best" of their ranks got fantasy nuked by the Empire's Sky Fortress and the members nowadays are wusses from after the war ended. Plus, there was a certain "incident" a few years ago that probably killed the better part of their veterans worth a damn.
As such, this goes pretty poorly for the Knights. But fear not, General Gismor still takes the time to mock Nowe some more. That guy is the best.
"Very well. Just act human, and make sure that you do not disgrace our name."
Beating up all the Knights of the Seal red shirts will end the mission and conclude the Royal Duel. I think this whole thing was just an excuse for General Gismor to be an ass to Nowe in front of an audience.
"I would like to...personally thank the priests for attending today's ceremony. And I renew the sacred promise of the Knights of the Seal-the promise that we will fight to defend the seal that protects the peace of our world."
Later that afternoon...
After the tournament, Nowe has a chat with Hierarch Seere. Yes, the 24 year old in a 6 year old's body Seere has taken over Verdelet's old job of Drakengard Pope. Don't ask me how that works. Or what the runt is even doing around here given Ending A was the canon conclusion of the previous game. You couldn't even recruit Seere until at least Ending A was already completed! My continuity immersion!!!
"Has it already been three years? Along with Oror, we lost many brave friends that day. Thanks to him, we have you, our savior."
"Don't say that! Oror raised me as his son. He treated me...as a human. A normal human child. I am not a savior!"
"The former hierarch, the man who gave us the seals to protect the world, was also lost at that time. So now, I lead the Knights of the Seal in his place."
"I umm...I am aware, Hierarch Seere. Are you feeling alright?"
"Perhaps you are a savior and perhaps you are not. In either case, I believe you are duty bound to ensure that Oror did not die in vain."
"I will have revenge against Oror's-I mean, my father's-enemies. That is why I have become a knight. And I have Legna by my side."
"Ah. I see your training in the arts of Hamfistium Expositionatus are progressing well, Nowe. Good, good. Well, see you for an obligatory cameo or two later."
And that's another verse down. And once again, Nowe is completely full of shit on his kill count for the chapter. Caim was already in the triple digits with legitimate murder by this point, young man! You disgrace this franchise with your shameful lies and deceit.
Verse 1 Cutscenes (Probably worth watching just to hear Gismor's awesome voice.)
Music: Plains of Pity
General Gismor Artwork - Too smug for pussy ass chairs.