Part 27: Nothing Steamy HereUpdate 21: Nothing Steamy Here
Alright. Let's get started. On that quest.
Where we have to haul a bunch of rocks.
A bunch of big, heavy rocks.
Under maintenance is pretty easy. We just have to go to the tiles marked on the map, and then go back to the Geomagnetic Pole. Floor Jump obviously makes this trivial.
SYSTEM: As you come closer, they are revealed as a group of miners with a guard standing watch. When the miners notice you, they briefly stop their chatter, then quickly resume it. The soldier, on the other hand, greets you warmly.
We just finished cutting it. It's really heavy... Make sure you don't strain your back.
That's what we have the bear foooooooor oh wow that's even bigger than I thought.
SYSTEM: Behind the guard, you see a huge rock that's been carved into a neat square. It's the size of one of your guild... It won't be easy to take it from the Labyrinth. You thank the guards, and
We'll buy you all the food you want after this, Ursa.
...I-I'll even help pay.
The guard starts talking as soon as we step in front of the Pole.
This would be pretty rough on my own...but if I get help from my comrades, it'll be fine! Thank you very much for your help! Good luck getting the other two! Okay, big guy, let's...get...moving...
Still two more. C'mon, let's go get 'em.
SYSTEM: It turns out to be another square-cut booulder, lying placidly on the ground.
They really just left this lying here? Lazy ne'er-do-wells.
SYSTEM: You achily remember the quest you accepted at the bar... You agreed to bring three boulders from the Labyrinth for the road construction. You have only delivered one boulder so far... You have
Got another one for you.
O-oh...this is the...second one. That's...bigger than the last one? W-Well, not by much, right? ...Right? All the guards are busy, so it's just...just me here. And you brought something...even bigger. I... I just can't...
We can just send Ursa back to town with you if you need help. It really wouldn't be a problem.
Ugh... N-No, don't worry. I'll handle it. You all must be tired as well...but please do your best to get the last rock.
This event happens as soon as I step on this tile. It's tied to Hidden Hot Springs!, not Under maintenance.
SYSTEM: ...Do you remember the request you accepted at the bar? You were asekd to dig up a hot spring in the forest. According to the requester, just hbeyond here is a place where one might be able to uncover a hot spring. You can proceed on to dig a hot spring up ahead, or not go about it now.
Not now, game.
SYSTEM: He doesn't notice you, so you call out a greeting.
You're the ones who took the quest, right?
Guild Lumen, at your service.
Good... I had to stay here and wait for you. It's about time you got here. The rock's right over there. Have at it!
SYSTEM: He grins at you, then jogs back to the Labyrinth's entrance. You wearily think back to your quest...isn't it finished yet? You were tasked with bringing three rocks from the Labyrinth back to town. You've already delivered two, which makes this the last rock!
It's almost over, Ursa. C'mon, just a bit more!
Hrr... Hrr... Hrr... HRRRRRGH!
......Really!? Really. There weren't any smaller ones? At all?
This was the only rock in that tiny corridor.
This is...three times the size of the last one...haha...hah...
Our bear's been lifting all of these from here to the Pole. At least you just warp right back to town.
...S-Sorry, I shouldn't complain... You already brought the thing over here, so you must be as tired as I am.
Thank you very much for your help. With these, we can continue with the road construction. It'll really help the city. Please accept your reward from the owner of the bar. I...guess I've got a job to do here. A...painful, exhausting, long job. ...Thank you so very much.
That really didn't take very long, did it?
Fantastic job! Yeh really showed them what yeh can do! The reward's over on the table. I can't wait to see what Lagaard looks like with improved roads! Even I 'spected that all yeh can do is find treasure or slay beasties. Seeing yeh lot help out the town like this... I'm touched!
Well, we wouldn't be exploring Yggdrasil were it not for the town.
...Some guard was movin' the rocks through the city earlier. What happened to him? Fella looked like the walkin' dead. Welp, whatever. He must'a been through somethin' rough. Here, yer reward. Thanks again!
The Kotegiri's another disabling weapon. If you need a refresher on those: they only have 10 ATK, but you gain a chance to inflict a certain disable when performing normal attacks, based on the weapon. In the Kotegiri's case, it attempts to bind the target's arms. These things are universally garbage, and the Kotegiri's no exception. The only guild members who can use katanas without Grimoires are Asriel and Ranger, both of whom have garbage LUC.
Still leveling up passives on Asriel for now. Consider that Asriel gets 1% extra physical damage per skill point in Phys ATK Up, and you'll see why investing in passives before you have the actives you want is a bad idea.
Alright, let's take care of Hidden Hot Springs! now.
I somehow doubt we'll find a spring in this small clearing.
SYSTEM: ...It would be difficult to begin digging up a hot spring without more space to work. You decide to head down the path in search of a place large enough to dig up a hot spring.
Secret/DLC areas, by and large, are just small areas with pointless twists.
There's steam rising from that crack in the ice...
Think we've found our spot.
Get out your shovels, everyone. Ursa, get your shovel claws out.
SYSTEM: You all work together to dig into the ground...
Sound effects of shovels hitting ice play here.
SYSTEM: After some time, you notice that the hole you've dug is quite deep and wide.
I--hah--don't think there's a spring here...
Digging into ice...is harder than I thought...
SYSTEM: ...It may be time to call it. It doesn't seem likely that you'll find a hot spring here.
Don't give up just yet. Doesn't the ground feel like it's getting warmer?
SYSTEM: Just as you find yourself thinking this, you realize the ground beneath your spade feels somewhat different... Could it be a hot spring?
All right, one last push!
I-I hit something... I don't think it's a spring, though...
SYSTEM: However, you seem to have used too much force--the shovel puts a deep gash in what seems to be the root of a plant! ...To your shock, you see that water has started gushing out from the root that you inadvertently cut into! ...And this is no ordinary water. It appears to be steaming hot!
Woah woah woah--!
SYSTEM: Surprised, you watch the hot water continue to pour out and fill the hole you dug.
...What just happened?
I...might've hit some part of Yggdrasil, I think?
Doesn't explain why it had steaming water inside of it.
Oh, who cares about the water's origin? We found it. That's what matters.
SYSTEM: Though perplexed at the hidden reservoir of water in the root, you celebrate with your allies at the spring's discovery.
Imagine a frog with a very deep voice croaking right now.
...Ursa. Please tell me that's just your best frog impression.
SYSTEM: ...However, your rejoicing is short-lived. You hear a bizarre croaking from behind you... As the croaking gets louder, you hear a loud stomping from behind that shakes the ground with every step closer!
Of all the things that could've happened, we had to attract a gigantic toad that loves hot springs.
Even for our explorations, this is just bizarre.
SYSTEM: It seems it sensed the appearance of a new water source, and has appeared to take advantage of it. With a heavy stomping, it heaves its wrinkled bulk towards you, charging in your direction! The monster is clearly headed towards the springs, but with you in its path, it shows no signs of stopping!
We spent a long, long time digging that spring. You've got another think coming if you want to mooch off our work!
Asriel, that has to be the stupidest--
SYSTEM: Now, take your weapons in hand and strike down the amphibious freeloader!
Hello, thread namesake.
VIDEO: Boss: Gentle Toad
Scatter About has been in every EO game since EO1. Literally all of them--although it was only used for one boss in EO1. It's generally used for postgame boss fights, but most of the DLC bosses in EO2U use it as well. I'm not a terribly big fan of it after it lost the super-loud BWEEEEOOOOWWWWWWW at the start of the EO1/2 DS version of the track.
Oh, right, the Gentle Toad.
HP: 9000, STR: 27, VIT: 23
- Transfix: Cannot be disabled. Telegraphs which party member will be the target of Lick Around or Hug.
- Get Excited: Cannot be disabled. Happens after a certain number of Hugs/Lick Arounds. Telegraphs that the Gentle Toad is about to spam Hydro Jump.
- Heavy Jump: Uses the legs. Deals moderate Bash damage to one target, with splash damage.
- Lick Around: Uses the head. Attempts to Panic the target, and lowers their physical/elemental defense for 3 turns.
- Hug: Uses the arms. Deals heavy Bash damage to one target. Attempts to completely bind the target.
- Hydro Jump: Uses the legs. Deals severe Ice damage to the entire party.
- Normal: Thorny Hide. Sells for 960 en. 1 needed to make Rubber Pauldron (+4 DEF, Reduces Volt damage by 25%).
"Thorny cheek skin that can stretch and expand. Its elasticity is used to make special armor."
- Conditional: Crushed Skin (Kill with Bash damage). Sells for 2114 en. 1 needed to make Bikini Armor (+1 DEF, Reduces all elemental damage by 50%).
"Frog skin crushed with tremendous strength. Now compressed, it has remarkable power."
- Normal: Cut, Stab, Bash
- Weak: Fire, Volt
- Resist: Ice
- Normal: Paralysis, Panic, Sleep, Fear, Head bind, Arm bind, Leg bind
- Weak: Poison
- Nullify: Blind, Curse, Petrification, Instant Death, Stun
- 100% to 75% HP: Only uses normal attacks.
- 75% to 50% HP: Does two attacks or Heavy Jumps. After that, transfixes on a character and uses either Lick Around or Hug (rare). Gets excited after 2 Transfix actions. Calms down after 3 Hydro Jumps.
- 50% to 25% HP: Does one attack or Heavy Jump. After that, transfixes on a character and uses either Lick Around or Hug. Gets excited after 2 Transfix actions. Calms down after 3 Hydro Jumps. Transfixes on a character again after calming down.
- 25% HP to death: Gets excited after one Transfix action. Uses Hug more often than Lick Around.
An ambushing toad that pesters wayfarers. Its throat bulges when excited.
The Gentle Toad is honestly kind of a boring boss. Its damage output isn't that bad, but it doesn't really have that much stuff you need to really worry about, aside from the Hydro Jump spam. If you have a Protector, you basically get 3 free turns. If you don't, and can't end the fight very quickly...ahaha, oh man, sucks to be you.
I didn't attempt for the conditional drop in this fight since my only sources of Bash damage are autoattacks from Ursa, Realga, and Stardust, and I'm on an extremely strict time limit here, but I will want the Bikini Armor sometime before the end of the postgame.
Asriel needs to set up Upper Stance.
Neither the Gentle Toad's attacks nor Heavy Jump hurt that hard, so I'll just have Ursa make them borderline-laughable.
Still getting good mileage out of that Warrior Song Grimoire.
If you couldn't predict Stardust setting up Compression, I dunno what to tell you.
Jackie turns on Action Boost immediately since I need as much damage as possible as quickly as possible.
C-Calm down, Ursa, no need to shout like that.
Hrup! We'll teach you to take without giving!
Yeah, like I said, Beast Roar really makes Gentle Toad's damage even more manageable. Even our back line could survive that.
...That's not even singing. That's just random noises.
Would you rather have me do that, or just scream one tone continuously?
Please just make the noises.
I probably should upgrade Jackie's gun soon, but she's still dishing out decent damage.
Asriel will just spam Horse Slash until Upper Stance runs out.
Ursa can definitely withstand anything the Gentle Toad can throw at us right now.
While Realga negates any damage Ursa takes.
Here comes the Inferno Formula spam.
Don't worry, I've got bandages and salves ready.
It's better than what Asriel was putting out vs. Arachne, since I finally upgraded his katana, but it's still less than ideal compared to Stardust and Jackie.
Hit-Taker + Beast Roar = heavily reduced physical damage. How's that for advanced-level theoretical spatial time anomaly-related calculus?
Ever think you might get better fire out of those weird gloves of yours than just bunching up some matches?
These matches have served me well both in the theater and in the Labyrinth. I see no reason to replace them.
Alchemists are seriously a really good class. They deal very, very nice damage throughout the entire game thanks to Compression.
The Gentle Toad nullifies stuns, but Supreme Bolt is still free damage comparable to an Action Boosted Charged Fire, so eh. I forgot about the stun nullification, though, which means I had Ursa waste a turn not doing any tanking! Go me.
Realga has nothing to do this turn, so I'll just have her prep Overheal instead.
Oh crap, I don't think it cares about my stun bullets...
Oof. Ursa, I get that your roar is terrifying, but--
Uh... W-what's it looking at me like that for...?
Hopefully Realga can get Salve off before the Gentle Toad acts.
YOU GET THAT TONGUE AWAY FROM ME--
Ahah. Ahahaha. Man, that tongue works wonderrrrrs.
Realga? Realga, snap out of it! REALGA!
She's more carefree than Phoebe is now. Think I prefer it this way.
Fix her RIGHT NOW, you affront to nature!
This thing sure eats a lot of bullets.
Rrrgh. Do we seriously not have any Thericas?
Ahaha, ha... Always make sure you have some Therica As and Bs, folks.
I feel...oddly heartier than normal.
Ooh, here's a fun bug I discovered doing my 5 Medics run. If a Medic gets panicked (and maybe petrified, too, but I'm not sure) on the turn they cast a healing skill combined with Overheal, the Overheal bonus HP doesn't get properly cleaned up on the turn the Medic is panicked. This only lasts for 1 turn, but we still get a much beefier party. It's obviously really hard to exploit this bug normally, since single-target ailments are few and far between amongst bosses, and getting one to target your Medic is purely random chance.
Holy gods, Ursa! Calm down a little! Realga'll be fine!
And here's an even more fun bug tied to that previous one. Overheal and Desperation normally don't stack, but if the Overheal bug takes effect, Desperation works off of the lingering bonus HP, meaning your Beast gets 525% of their normal HP for one turn. We now have a mega-tank for one turn. Pretty good.
This thing needs to die before Realga does something inadvisable!
Ahaheh, sorry, Ursa. Just kinda threw my staff there...
Oops. Forgot to recast Compression.
Hey, Luca... I never toldja what I wanted to say when I thought we were gonna die ta those snowmen.
Uh... What is it?
No, not now...!
Stare elsewhere, demon toad! Or I'll slice you faster than the hare defeated you in a race!
TIME TILL DEATH: 3
Okay, it's almost dead. Phew. I can probably end this fight before the Hydro Jump spam comes out.
I'll not make the same mistake twice.
I never realized it till I got jealous seein' ya get cozy 'n shy with ol' Charlotte when ya came back from that show in Tharsis...
No no no, this is the wrong time for this! Of all the times to not pack Thericas...!
Whoops, there went my staff again. Gimme a sec...
TIME TILL DEATH: 2
I didn't want to use three images to show it, but Ursa got completely bound by Hug there.
Okay, that's kinda gross.
TIME TILL DEATH: 1
Welp. It's either we kill it or it kills us now.
I can't even use True Endurance to be safe since Ursa's completely bound.
But yeah, I didn't realize it until I thought about it, but...
TIME TILL DEATH: 0
...What just happened to me?
L-let's not talk about it...
Phew, I guess...
The Gentle Toad's turn was gonna come right after that. Holy shit that was close.
What an absolutely bizarre creature.
Even for a Labyrinth monster, that thing was weird. ...Oh gods, ew, I've still got toad saliva on me.
Ick... Yeah, I don't think the rest of us are faring much better. That thing was exhausting to fight.
SYSTEM: As you sigh in exhaustion, you slowly become aware of a warm, inviting breeze in the air.
SYSTEM: With you so tired and weary, the steam looks appealing indeed, rising off the water's surface into the frigid air...
Oh, screw it. I think we've earned a quick soak in that--Wait. Uh, Asriel...?
I'll leave you girls to the spring. I can get by just fine sitting in the snow on the other side of the door.
Thanks. I dunno how that works, but oh well!
SYSTEM: Nonchalantly excusing it as necessary warmth and relief of exhaustion, you cast off your wet clothes and enter the springs.
So, uh, I didn't say anything weird when I was out of it, did I?
N-no! ...Not at all.
Nope. You just kept...hitting us with your staff. ...Ow, my head still hurts...
If I ever see another toad again, it'll be too soon.
...So, Realga. You talked a while back about that hat guy while you were at med school?
Oh, she's told me about him before...
SYSTEM: The hot water warms your bodies, and the contrast of the cold outside air against your heated faces is truly wonderful. You decide to spend some time resting in this warm bliss...
...You're not actually trying to set them up, right?
Aw, c'mon, think about it! Wouldn't those two be cute together? Plus, it'd fit the story he's trying to make!
I hate to interrupt this riveting discussion, but it's getting late. We should probably tell Cass about this spring and get some rest. We're starting our search for the Snow Blooms tomorrow.
...Eh, you're right. We'll have to come back with some of the others another time, though. This was kinda fun!
Let's go get Asriel and head back to town.
The entire party gets a pointless full HP/TP heal from the hot springs. And no, you can't use the hot springs like the recovery basins from EO1/EOU--the spring just turns back into a patch of ice after you've turned the quest in, and you can't interact with the spring after getting the heal.
SYSTEM: You have completed the request to dig up a hot spring in the forest. You should head back to the bar when you have time, and report your success.
Oh, this request. Yeah, like I said, ain't any way yeh--
We found a spring, Cass.
W-Wait, yeh dug some up!? Hot springs come from underground, right!? Then how the hell is somethin' like that poppin' up inside a damn tree!?
I'm pretty sure I hit some kind of root of Yggdrasil, and it started spouting hot water.
...Hot water spewin' from the tree itself, eh...? Well, I guess Yggdrasil really is full of surprises. I heard that in Ontario--oh, uh, some faraway land--there's a tree full of liquid sugar, so I guess it's kinda like that... *sigh* I figured it'd be impossible, but I guess the world is pretty mysterious. Looks like yer client had the right idea all along. ...Maybe I can get some money outta the requester still. Not too late to get in his good books, eh? ...Eh? What's with the faces? Ain't it a fine thing to have lots of friends to help yeh out? Haw haw haw haw! Yeh lot oughta meet more people. And then I can meet 'em through yeh, and we'll all have connections! Here, take yer reward!
I legitimately could not care less about the Analysis Scopes, but the Return Flutes are very, very nice. The EXP reward's also fairly huge.
LEVELING UP PASSIVES EXCITING AMAZING FANTASTIC WOW
Another small boost to Salve.
I'll start putting points in Thor Formula at this point.
Hey, look, another Burst Shot level.
And lastly, here's what the Toad's normal drop unlocks.
Rubber Pauldron (+4 DEF, 25% Volt damage reduction) is made from 1 Thorny Hide. It's complete trash. The Volt damage reduction is barely anything, and certainly not enough to offset the fact that it gives 4 goddamn DEF.
Next time: the hunt for the Snow Blooms begins.