Part 48: Update Forty Seven: Yellow Brick RoadWelcome back! Last time, on Earthbound, we wound our way through a pyramid, recovered an ancient relic and discovered that Brick Road had actually become the ultimate fusion of man and dungeon. Today, we're going to be exploring said fusion of man and dungeon, so let's get started.
Since we've already covered what's to the left of this sign, we're heading right this time.
Alright, everybody, be sure to remember this sign. Do not forget about it.
All of these signs are signed by Brick Road, but I didn't screenshot some of those; if it fit with the message on the sign, then it's there, but if not, like this sign, it's not shown.
I like it when a dungeon has a clear, identifiable goal. Makes me feel like I'm actually progressing, instead of pissing around in the dark.
Ooh, what's at the end of this side-path?
Like any good dungeon, there's a bit of treasure. I can dig it.
This isn't a bad food item; it restores about 80 HP to anyone who's not Poo. For Kim, that's not too shabby, methinks.
Heading up that path that we dodged earlier, we see another healing bench.
And it's a full-heal, no cost bench, too. Brick Road is pretty generous with his dungeon design.
He's even ensured that we're going to be able to use the facilities if we need to. Truly, more dungeon designers could take a lesson from this.
: Just who am I? What is life all about... Oh, I'm sorry. Did I make you nervous? I'm not dangerous. Don't worry.
Heading the alternate route from the bathroom leads to another dead-end.
Will it actually be useful? Or is Brick Road putting something there he thinks is useful, but is actually useless to us?
Well, balls, that is useful. I'm used to some of the bullshit "treasures" you find in other RPG's. Like, who the fuck seriously needs an Echo Herb?
We head back around and off the path this time.
But, are they invited to move in, or are monsters just glorified squatters? Based on the monsters in your last dungeon, Brick Road, I'd wager that they're allowed to move in, as long as they pay rent or have a communal living lifestyle or something.
Now I'm imagining a Malboro doing the laundry and Ogres mopping, while Coeurls teach school or something.
Hmm, a present box just out in the open?
True that, dawg. So, what're we getting shafted with in this present box?
Hey, $5 ain't bad. Sure, I have over $60,000 in the bank, but that's still $5 more than I had before.
Oh, hey, enemies. I haven't seen you guys for a little while.
And I barely saw them anyway!
I've really got to start pitching some of the useless shit in my inventory. It's getting seriously clogged up.
Let's continue on this path.
Two signs!? What madness is this?
Ah, a lesson my father has tried beating into my head for a long time.
At least I have diligence when it comes to grinding.
Ooh, Super Plush Bears are fucking nice. The regular Teddy Bear has around 100 HP, and at this stage, they're almost certain to be one-shotted. The Super Plush Bear has around 400 HP, nearly as much as Nass, but its defense is a touch low (it's 50, if you were curious), but they still have the same 75% chance of being targeted that the regular Teddy Bear did.
It's not an item you're likely to see me buy, but I won't ever complain about a free one.
Y'know, Brick Road, you could have thrown some tougher enemies at us.
Whoa! Mystical Records only have a 1/64 chance of dropping one of these. Pizzas are nice, restoring around 120 HP to a single person.
The only reason I took this shot was to see if anyone would marvel at the present orgy happening in the lower left corner.
A do-do-do, just goin' through the Dungeon Man, loo-loo-loo.
But since it has something written on it, doesn't that count as a message? Oh, hell, that sounds like the type of bullshit people throw on Philosoraptor, thinking they're clever and providing something that will actually make people think. Let me tell you, jerkoff who does that, the only person amazed by your "deep, insightful thoughts" is higher than Olympus Mons!
Don't look to the left. There's nothing there. There's certainly not a taxi, a bike, or a revitalizing machine that I didn't get a good shot of.
All four of these signs carry the same message.
Up the first rope is...Disappointing.
But, what if I'm a firefighter or Moltar?
Up the second rope!
Damn, not the correct rope, either.
Ah, simple, but something everyone should follow.
And that is the correct spelling of the game's title; it's not Earthbound as I've been typing this entire time, it actually is EarthBound, but I think "Earthbound" looks better, so I go with that.
Up the third rope!
Ah, so this is progressing forward. But what about the fourth rope? There could be treasure!
Aww, just a career opportunity. But, isn't that a sort of treasure in and of itself?
Alright, back on the right path, let's check out another sign.
I think you've made a pretty good answer here.
Ooh, two new signs, a hole and a bench!
Let's take a quick rest.
: Hey, Susan, what'd you make this time?
: If I'd been a few minutes longer, you'd have fit nicely into a sandwich.
The Spectrum Beam is a nice upgrade. Twelve more points of offense is always welcome, but I'm curious about what it actually looks like. I'd love to make it a full blown art contest, since it's easy to imagine what Nass and Kim's weapons look like. But, what about Susan's? Feel free to draw it up, and I'll include it in the OP or something, maybe even bring you along as a guest when I record some more footage.
What, don't look at me like that. I don't have any money to give out real prizes, so that's the best I can offer.
Holy crap, I thought those enemies were limited to Moonside. Dear God, they've escaped into the real world!
Oh, well, that's a load off my mind.
Ooh, is it a Spinning Robo or something equally not dangerous?
OH JESUS CHRIST
No, wait, this is nothing to be super-concerned about now. We're a lot more powerful than we were the last time we encountered these guys, so we can actually handle this now. Diamondization is still a concern, but most of us can survive a Freeze Alpha, and we should be able to beat him down fast enough to prevent his eerie glare.
Lesser Mooks have 401 HP, with good defense and meh offense. But, that offense doesn't matter, as it has no physical attack. It's either Freeze Alpha or Beta, Hypnosis Alpha, or the diamondization attack.
But, since Nass can do nearly half his health in a single bash, I'm not worried.
Okay, now I'm worried. Freeze Beta would probably kill anyone not Nass, and he'd only survive due to being a bucket of HP.
Oh, Super Plush Bear, you beautiful bastard!
Nass bats him into oblivion next turn.
Their exp. kinda sucks. 2,500 at this point isn't really a lot anymore; I'd like to see at least 3,000.
Hey, I don't think it's useless. It's nice to know you still want to talk to us.
And that present box isn't useless, either. $10 is still $10.
Heading back down, we'll be taking the lower path now.
The text box is covering the way into this area, by the way. And if flash photography is prohibited, what about Flash PSI? Come to think of it, are there any enemies in here with Flash?
Jesus, Brick Road, how many damned signs did you put up?
Ah, so we're about, what, halfway up? At least, my bellybutton seems to be around the halfway mark of my body.
Heading down the path, we spy another present box and another billboard.
I agree. It's a hell of a tune. You better still be listening to it.
Hmm, a rope and a side-path. Before we do anything, let's read the sign.
I can't smell anything.
Well, since there was precisely jack and shit down the path, let's head up the rope.
Hey, more treasure.
That first present we saw holds this Pizza. Pizzas are actually pretty nice healing items, because it's still 1/4 of Nass' health, about 3/4 of Kim's, and a touch over 1/2 for Susan. And I see a path down there I didn't take.
My ass there is, Brick Road!
Okay, I forgive you. You know I can't stay mad at you, Brick Road. And, in its own way, this billboard is a treasure, too.
On the way back, we encounter a potentially problematic situation.
Lesser Mooks are weak to Fire.
So, burn 'em to the ground.
See, now that's a nicer bit of exp. to receive. Granted, it took two of them to do it, and we're actually down a party member to divvy the exp. to.
But, Nass still gained a level!
For this level, he gained +1 offense, +1 speed, +1 luck, and +2 HP.
Susan also snagged himself a level!
For this level, he gained +1 offense, +1 speed, +2 IQ and +3 HP.
Back on track, we encounter another of the Goddamned assholes.
Agreed. Those Lesser Mooks can be quite a challenge if you're not prepared for what they can do. The Rain Pendant will just about neuter their entire offensive arsenal, dropping their damage with Freeze down to the single digits.
Oh, Sudden Guts Pill, where won't I find you?
No, there was no actual reason for me to come down here, except to gather blood for the Blood God.
Ooh, another rope and a sign.
Oh, Brick Road, I never stress when I can potentially gain a ton of exp.
But first, we have a treasure to snag.
This ain't too shabby. 20 PP isn't as much as it used to be, but it's still nice to have some method of recovering it.
Up that rope, we encounter a sign, face first.
Ah, we're getting closer to the top. There's not too much left of the Dungeon Man.
That's right. It's a motherfuckin' Mad Duck zoo exhibit. Bask in its glory, and watch the Mad Ducks be Mad.
Oh, Gruff Goats! It's been a while since we've encountered one of these.
Thanks for that startling insight into these animals, Brick Road.
Hmm, more holes and another sign.
How did you capture these, Brick Road?
Over to the left of the Slimy Little Pile exhibit, there's another resting bench and a present box.
This is the first time you've ever disappointed me, Brick Road.
We rest, because it's there and free, and then head back here to this rope.
Finally made it to where, though?
Well, now that's something you don't see everyday. Aren't you glad it's on the inside, though, instead of having Dungeon Man looking like he's fucking Quatto or something?
Well, then, uh...Let's chat.
Thanks! It's nice to be here, Brick Road.
It has been quite a while, hasn't it? It's been a few weeks in the LP, and probably about that much time in-game, too, I'd imagine.
: If you want, I'll come with you guys for a while. The "Return Hole" is over there. Jump in that hole and then walk out.
And, yeah, you understood what he was saying correctly. Dungeon Man is going to join our fucking party.
Ah, two more signs. And yeah, I missed one back there. I'm terribly sorry.
With as much courage as I have, we may not fit in the hole.
But first, let's examine this hole.
Is there any doubt that we won't enter this hole? Raise your hands if you doubt.
And if you doubt, take your raised hand, and poke yourself in the eye for being dumb.
Oh, we're so close to the Mad Ducks!
Oh, hey, you can see part of the bench in the lower left corner. I didn't notice that until just now.
JESUS CHRIST, WE'RE ALMOST ON FIRE
Leave me alone, you bastards! GO BACK TO MOONSIDE
I'm not even sure what enemy that was. Anyone care to make a guess?
Ah, treasure and a hole.
As quickly as it is thrown into Susan's inventory, it's taken just as quickly.
Oh, Susan, you'll have a bazooka soon enough. We just gotta get the Broken Bazooka out of storage.
Alright, let's get outta here.
Oh, yeah, Dungeon Man is following us. He's an NPC who can't be targeted, but he still participates in battle.
Aww, dammit. I wanted take him home and show Mom.
Oh, speaking of Mom, you all remember how Nass was homesick? I never called Mom.
I don't know what the fuck happened, but Nass' homesickness cleared up on its own. If someone can explain what did happen, I'd like to hear it.
There's a touch of desert to explore, and since we have Dungeon Man with us, we may as well get it over with.
In battle, Dungeon Man will either hug the enemy, which inflicts solidification, or bash them for a ton of damage. He didn't attack this battle, but I do have a screenshot of his damage potential.
Whoa, holy shit! Kraken Soup fully restores someone's HP and I didn't know the Beautiful UFO could drop it.
No, I didn't miss this guy my first time through. I decided to hide him until now, as he holds something very special.
No, not the French Fry Pan.
Though, that is a nice item for Kim. What I'm talking about, though is this:
: Who's the white, super-genius that's a sex machine to all the chicks?
: Ya damn right.
: Who is the man that would risk his neck for his brother man?
: Can you dig it?
: Who's the cat that won't cop out when there's danger all about?
: Right on!
: They say this cat Shaft is a bad mother--
: Shut yo' mouth!
: I'm talkin' bout Susan.
: THEN WE CAN DIG IT!
This is the only part of the Multi-Bottle Rocket you need to concern yourself with. We'll see just how much damage soon, and I can assure you that it will not be a disappointment.
Alright, let's continue our exploration.
Kim hits a level before too long.
For this level, she gained +1 offense, +1 speed, and +2 HP.
Ah, this should do nicely for displaying Dungeon Man's physical prowess.
These three shots are just for comparison's sake.
Yeah, Dungeon Man broke 400 damage without a SMAAAAAAAASH attack. His offense is 255, which is far higher than what anyone else has. His speed is only 1, though, but still, 255 offense is more than enough to make up for that. His guts are only 30, though, so seeing him SMAAAAAAAAASH would be a rare occurrence, but if my math is right, it'd deal over 800 damage to whatever poor bastard was on the receiving end of that blow.
And yeah, there is jack and shit around this desert. Barring the weapons guy, there's nothing interesting.
And doesn't this look like the obvious, "continue the game here" spot?
Nooooooo, Dungeon Man!
: Mmm... I cannot move. Well, if I cannot move, it is okay. Nass, it makes me sad, but I must say goodbye here, at my eternal resting place.
Oh, no. As quickly as we found him, we've now lost the Dungeon Man.
: Do not worry about me... Please continue on.
At least, by getting stuck there, Brick Road has ensured his dungeon must be passed through if they wish to come past this spot. I think that's what he would have wanted.
We're stopping here for now. Next time, on Earthbound, there might be more Brick Road shenanigans. Stay tuned!