The Let's Play Archive

Etrian Odyssey

by Crosspeice

Part 5: Making a Killing

Part 4: Making a Killing

The Green, Green Woodlands

Have you been missing doors in this labyrinth? Well this update is gonna be full of them!

Rollers continue to be dicks, but Ice slaps them down pretty easily. Defend is an actual buff you can get rid of, while them defending is the same as yours.

EO1 and 2 are full of strange conflations of common terminology and skill names like that, owing to the 8-character skill name limit.

That is terrifying.

You still can't hide your excitement. I think I see a way past at least.

Fun fact: you can clearly see that the FOE "model" is just two instances of the same texture intersecting at 90-degree angles. EO3 changed them to be billboards--ie. always facing the screen.

By moving two steps forward and one step back, you can walk straight past these two Stalkers. Wahey FOE puzzles.

Ambush by the door, of course.

Anyone feel an immense pressure on each side?

We need to finish this up, NOW!

FOEs will happily join battles if they run into you, but only if there's enough room to fit their sprite.

Hooray for technical limitations!

Ahh, sweet moolah.

Since this is a treasure room, of course we encounter some enemies not four steps after we faced the last lot.

If everyone is still keeping strong, let's keep going.

No one's dead yet, so sure. Watch out for the big scary bugs.

See why I always target these things first?

Yeah I get it, gah!

More levels, more going towards the wonderful skill of 2-Hit.

That's half of the broken puzzle. Defender is a full party DEF buff, which is really nice to lay down at the start of any battle. It has an 80% damage reduction.

Step 1 in protecting yourself from the game's sheer and raw hatred of you.

Poison now deals 63 damage, enough to one shot every regular enemy we've faced so far. Cure III now has an 8% speed modifier, wow!

What's behind door number 3?

An encounter we can't one shot in one turn, meaning we'll probably take poison damage. Joy.

Another angry bull down a thin path...

Hmm, there's a lot of winding corridors here. Perhaps we could get around it somehow.

Who was supposed to, ugh, keep watch while we were running?


That's one way to end a trip.

Sometimes the labyrinth says you're going home even if you don't want to.

The Lounge Where We Speak of Tomorrow

7 Soft Hides and 3 Gum Hides are required for Hide Glove (Gloves, DEF+1, STR+1)

5 Gum Hides and 2 Horns are required for Short Bow (Bow, ATK+15) Required for A favor to Shilleka II

9 Soft Hides and 5 Gum Hides are required for Hide Boot (Footwear, DEF+1, AGI+2)

1 Vine, 1 Gum Hide and 1 Hare Tail required for Buffcoat (Clothing, DEF+2, AGI+3)

Ahh, y'already gat'ered t'materials for t'at one! I forgot I made t'at request. But don't fret. I'll still pay t'reward. Go see Valerie and pick it up from her, okay?

Gimme gimme gimme

Ohoh, what fine craftsmenship!

You'll get it later!

Still won't be doing anything about that Pyroxene quest until next update, but Liana could really use the upgrade.

If you've been dumping all of your Survivalist's SP into Bows, this upgrade is going to do wonders.

The Green, Green Woodlands

I also hope you're not forgetting that I'm having to go through both B1F and B2F and half of B3F to resume where I was now. This gets old very fast.

It took the EO team until EO3 to become good at shortcut distribution.

Dunno if it was really them not being good at it, so much as they wanted the players to have a really rough time

Mmm, so smooth!

I can see her grin even through her scarf.

Having to do the four step tango with this Stalker is also getting a bit old.

What the heck? How did it get back here?

Ah shoot, sorry, I'm not 100% on guard with these things anymore.

That's the first time the back row has taken actual physical damage all game.

I'll leave Multihit at 115% power each hit for the moment, as you'll see later. Right now it's worth investing in other skills, like Apollon.

Darn, I thought this could be a way forward, but nope, it's right through that FOE.

Hmm, let me double check something.

There's a path to the right, but we keep meeting this bull just before we reach it.

I'm pretty sure it would just chase us down there and if it's a dead end, we're screwed.

Well we can't find out, so let's see if we can give it the ol' loop around.

Crap, both paths are the same length, we can't out run it.

What the hell are we supposed to do then?

We could kill it.


Oh here we go...

-think we can.


Agreed. It's looking at us quite cautiously. It's seeing us as a potential threat.

Let's not dive before we can swim, though, we need something slightly weaker to fight first.

Now you're speaking my language!

We could get past that 3rd floor FOE if we timed it right, since it'll lose aggro if we go into that side path. But it's pretty awkward to do, and if you don't reach it, like we've done twice already, it'll chase you back out and waste a bunch of time. Screw that, don't get to thinking these monsters are impossible to beat!

A Sudden Gust of Wind Before Your Eyes


Of course...


Level: 12
HP: 330
STR: 45
VIT: 26
AGI: 27
LUC: 27
TEC: 18

EXP: 297

Scream: Uses the Head. Attempts to inflict Confusion on a single target. Has a 25% infliction chance and a 60% speed modifier.

Damage Vulnerabilities
75% 75% 75%
100% 100% 200%

Disable Vulnerabilities
25% 50% 5%
50% 50% 50%

Normal: Horn. 90% chance. Sells for 18en.
1 required for Ocarina (Troubadour Accessory, TP+10)
1 required for Enamel Bow (Bow, ATK+9)
2 required for Short Bow (Bow, ATK+15) Required for A favor to Shilleka II

Rare: Large Fang. 15% chance. Sells for 250en.
1 required for Boar Spear (Sword, ATK+29, STR+3)
1 required for Bone Mace (Staff, ATK+15, HP+7)
1 required for Beast Bow (Bow, ATK+24, STR+2, TEC+1)

Conditional: None

Just a quick refresher. Ragelopes obviously have scary stats, but if you're able to mitigate its damage, all you need to worry about is keeping your health topped up and not getting hit by Scream. We can beat this, but it can also go very south very quickly.

So you've decided to fight an FOE and want to know what to do against one? Well, FOEs are really just stat and level checks. As enemies in battle, they're rather simplistic by design since there isn't actually much they can really do, and most of the time, their AI tends to be simple. Though the occasional FOE in the series may have a gimmick here and there. They're really there to pound unprepared players into the dust. But if you specifically prepare for one, they're typically not that scary. The reason FOEs are designed the way they are is that they're namely obstacles to be aware of while in the Labyrinth, providing tension and instilling a feeling of dread in the player, forcing them to think about how to move about when they're around. However, the fact that you can fight them means that you can just brute force past an FOE if you want, but the game won't make it easy, so be aware of what you're getting into. An FOE that catches you off guard can be your worst nightmare. Still, FOEs are simplistically designed enemies when you really look at them.

Begone foul beast!

He likes losing his arm.

Well this party is getting started now that I'm here.

Oh yeah, I should mention I'm only able to actually take these FOEs down because of Ryu and nothing else. Everyone else does pitiful damage, but here's nearly 1/5th of its health gone in one go. Remember this skill is only level THREE.

Poison is really strangely balanced in EO1 and 2, if you couldn't tell.

Player Poison is just flat out overpowered in 2, and utterly awful and not worth using at all in EO3. Fixed damage instances tend to be tough to balance. (To the point where the developers eventually tried to make Poison "scale" in a sense in EO4, and outright added in a scaling factor starting from EOU.) Oh yeah, Poison cheese is the only way you're taking on the FOEs early. You're just going to get pasted otherwise.


If Ryu wasn't doing so much, I'd be panicking right now.

You're not, but they are.

What would you be doing without me?

Oh don't rub it in.

Yeah, that's 186 damage across two turns. I could be using Multihit to add to the damage, but I might as well save TP for exploring after thi-

Such... graceful leaps...

Looks like it's just you and me.

Okay now I'm starting to panic.

FUCK. Since Gerson didn't put up any defensive measures, this thing can one shot anyone if it feels like it. Well, Karin could actually survive, thank you double DEF!


Oh good, they're not completely gone.

Phew, j-just as planned.



Welcome to the less exp club, Ryu... No matter, you could probably do this without an Alchemist, but it'd just be easier to find a way around the 3rd floor FOE, annoying as that might be.

I, too, hate deer.

15 Beast Bones and 1 Large Fang required for Bone Mace (Stave, ATK+15, HP+7)

EOU, sadly, keeps around ridiculous unlock requirements like that. Mercifully, though, it puts most of them in the latter half of the game.

Embrace the grind. Because it's not going to let up.

Welcome back, kids. Yikes, you had to go all the way down to the 3rd floor for this? Well, thanks for your hard work. As you go further, the rest will practically fill itself in.

...and you layout the data like so.

Hmm, quite a simple design, I approve!

This simple bracelet is really keeping my mind sharp!

I'm not a huge fan of accessories in this game since they're usually +1 DEF with another attribute that is usually whatever, but since most of our armour also gives +1 DEF and we got this for free, hey, might as well.

FOEs don't respawn for 7 days, so let's explore what was past it. Hopefully there's lots more to this floor!

Since there's standard B2F encounters, we'll be just fine.

While the timing wasn't perfect, we can now use Axes against single encounters. So, FOEs, for example. Defender is now a 77% reduction.

Good, now I can ignore Cure III forever and ever.

We've gotta come back here again later? Aww, man...

I could probably oneshot the Ragelope by that point.

Another bull. But it looks like we could sneak past it.


I thought this might happen.

My axe is crying out for blood! I'm sick of running away from everything, let's take this thing down already!

I won't get confused this time around, you can count on me!

Hmm, well why not.

That's a bit surprising.

Hey, don't think of me as this annoying nag! I just didn't want you idiots charging to your death. But you know, I've got my own goals in life, brothers to surpass, so let's take this monster down!

I think my heart just skipped a beat. Chaaaaaaarge!

A Sudden Gust of Wind Before Your Eyes

Those horns aren't just for show, so watch out, ehehehe.

How comforting...


Level: 13
HP: 350
STR: 48
VIT: 27
AGI: 29
LUC: 29
TEC: 19

EXP: 301

Rampage: Uses the Arms. A Stab attack that deals 130% damage to a single target. Has a 90% accuracy modifier and a 10% speed modifier.

Damage Vulnerabilities
100% 150% 100%
100% 100% 100%

Disable Vulnerabilities
25% 50% 5%
50% 50% 50%

Normal: Metal Horn. 90% chance. Sells for 36en.
1 required for Plate (Heavy Armor, DEF+5, VIT+2, AGI-1)
1 required for Wakizashi (Katana, ATK+20)

Rare: Large Fang. 20% chance. Sells for 250en.
1 required for Boar Spear (Sword, ATK+29, STR+3)
1 required for Bone Mace (Staff, ATK+15, HP+7)
1 required for Beast Bow (Bow, ATK+24, STR+2, TEC+1)

Conditional: None

The Ragelope can be hard to take down since it'll make your party impossible to command, but the Kuyutha will just straight up murder you no problem. Now would be a good time to use some defensive skills.

Enemies don't need to have a complex design to be scary. The fact that they can murder you in one hit can be scary enough!

Ooh it doesn't like that.

Yah! Take that!


Crush is such a good skill that it'll outdamage a weakness. And it's only level 1!

Can Lavin tutor Judith in really making good use of axes? Please?

(Judith is the Landsknecht in Ragnar's EOU LP.)

Hmm, that's annoying.

I'm sure you'll be fine, OW.

Please, I'm all prepared.

With both Defender and F. Guard, we can take these regular attacks just fine. Rampage still stings, but it's manageable.

Look at that damage reduction! That's one of the main reasons you want to beeline for Defender.

Heh, not bad, but I'm too tough for ya.

What an evil smile...

This is the beauty of poison.

You don't even need to bother attacking.

We'll be heading for Apollon next, since it's a pretty fancy skill and Karin wouldn't be able to utilize 1st Turn just yet. Also, I forgot to spend Ryu's skill point! It's gonna happen sooner or later, but since Ryu only just got out of exp sync, I was too busy healing everyone to remember it. It's not a huge deal anyway, both Ragelope and Kuyutha only last 2 turns when they're poisoned, so another level won't change that.

5 Hardwoods and 1 Metal Horn is required for Wakizashi (Katana, ATK+20)

1 Metal Horn is required for Plate (Heavy Armor, DEF+5, VIT+2, AGI-1)

Aryll can finally use her Katana skills! Woo! Dunno why they have unlockable Katanas this early on when you would never use them by the time you unlock the class, but I'm glad about it!

I have to wonder if Ronin were originally planned to be usable from the start, which would have been much better than unlocking them at the point you actually unlock them at. (Which is to say, really fucking late!)

Wow, I'd forgotten what proper armour felt like. I should've just made it myself, gahaha!

We're on an FOE roll, let's keep killing. Especially cause it gives us great exp!

Yep, ack, let's kill this thing quick.

I'm sorry, was there an FOE here? I didn't even notice.

You're welcome.

+3 AGI probably does fuck all, but hey, it's better than what we've currently got.

Still feels like we're missing something.

Aside from what's behind the door, I don't think there's much else.

There's only that small treasure room left, but we have basically completed the second floor. God what a small shitty area, what a way to hook players onto your game, eh?

Notice how there are no shortcuts and that there's not really a good way to shorten the critical path. And you have to go through this floor ever time you want to get to floor 3 and beyond.

For the third time, we've encountered the Kuyutha before we could go down the small path to dodge it. This was absolutely the better idea.

If this FOE wasn't aggressive, it would be easier to dodge it. But dodging it is basically kind of luck based because it is aggressive. You can time it a lot easier if you have access to the Survivalist's Owl-Eye or the Alchemist's Sight skills, since they show you where the FOEs are while they're active. If you don't have access to Poison, that may be your only solution to getting past FOEs like this...

Well let's not get too complacent.

I'll do my job so long as you do yours!

If it's only wounding me, then I don't think we're in a lot of trouble.

Only a slight bruise? Lame.

Yeah that's right, you can't touch this! I see you looking, Liana.

N-No I'm not.

Haha, she went all red.

You're one to talk.

Let's continue! And by that I mean ignore all the dead ends and take the quickest path down to the door.

Red and Black

H-Hey, what's going on?

Without warning, an ear-piercing scream sounds out, followed by the growl of a fierce beast. Mere yards away, a giant wolf is preparing to spring onto an unlucky soldier! The wounded soldier seems to be petrified with horror. You take a step forward...

You look flammable.

Pick on someone your own size, you mangy dog!

Her lips scarcely parting, the girl with the ringing bell murmurs a mysterious chant. All at once, the wolf that had stood ready to pounce stops moving, its muscles tensed... at a final word from the girl, blood spews from the wolf's jaws, and it collapses.

Can Cheese do that?

I sure hope so.

You should be careful. It's dangerous to fight wolves with open wounds like his.

Woah, I feel amazing! Was that magic? It'd better not be!

Don't worry, it's not.

I'll tend to this soldier. You should go on... the stairs to the 4th floor are not far.

As she speaks, Tlachtga points you to the back of the room

I'll stay here until you defeat Fenrir. Come back if your wounds become too severe.

Tlachtga turns away, her attention focused on treating the collapsed soldier's wounds. The way is clear to continue forth.

The Green, Green Woodlands

Since we're so close, let's take a look.

So long as we finish up this map, sure.

Not particularly scary, but it's nice they're varying encounters up.

Mmm, a new trash skill to invest in!

74%, whatever, Revive is going to help our explorations greatly. Before now, we had to basically give up if someone died, since we only have one Nectar and like hell are we using it now. Now, we can continue regardless of death, so long as Karin has TP. Since we can buy Amritas to use on her, we can keep going for a lot longer now! Though since it only revives them to low health, it's probably best done after battle, though it is affected by Healer.

Heal Mastery, the proper name for Healer, along with its cousins Form Qi and Herb Mastery, was later changed to only affect non-static healing.

Ugh, it smells of blood and fur.

You can hear the howls even here. We can tackle this later.

Fancy meeting you here.

You pipe down.

How fare you? I hope you're not pushing yourself too hard.

She sprinkles a few more of her shining droplets on you.

Water from a spring deep in the forest. It heals your stamina.

The hexer speaks true; you find your stamina regained as the cool water soaks into your skin.

We need to find this spring ourselves, damn.

The 4th floor is home to many wolves. Take care...

The girl shyly turns her head away after delivering her warning to you. Your strength regained, you feel ready to continue your adventure into the forest.

Tlachtga basically serves as a rest point until you kill Fenrir. You'll really want to make use of this as you go through the 4th and 5th floors, because there's no quick path down to them.

Another one to toss onto the pile.

B3F F3 Take Point

Tiny Petal. 50% chance. Sells for 8en.
1 required for Tweed (Clothing, DEF+1, AGI +1)
10 required for Petal Ring (Accessory, DEF+1, TEC+1)
10 required for Medica II (Medicine, heals the target by 100HP)
1 required for Remembrance of a friend

Amber Lump. 25% chance. Sells for 27en.
1 required for Bravant (Medicine, increases the target's ATK by 110% for 5 turns)
3 required for Theriaca B (Medicine, removes the target's ailments)
5 required for Nectar (Medicine, revives the target to 18HP, affected by Healer)
10 required for Hamao (Medicine, recovers the target by 300HP and 50TP)
1 required for Pest control

Crabapple. 15% chance. Sells for 35en.
5 required for Medica III (Medicine, recovers the target by 200HP)

It's been 3 updates since we last discovered a gathering point. Christ. You should definitely get your gathering party up here, since we can get Nectars right here and now, it's pretty great! Theriaca Bs, Medica IIIs and Hamaos will require later items, so it's not a super amazing bounty, but Take spots are usually very necessary for new Medicine.

I completely forgot that EO1 locks off S1 Take points until B4F, jesus christ. They're on B2F in EOU, making getting Nectars much less of a chore.

On the other hand, once you unlock Nectars, they're unlocked for good in this game. Unlike in later titles where you have to restock every time. So getting to this point will really help the party survive a lot more often in the Labyrinth.

I'm pretty happy everyone's reached level 10. Since we can early kill FOEs, they give out some great experience.

Did I notice Ryu had 2 skill points to spend? Nope! I just spent one, well done me. 83 Poison damage now, over a quarter of an FOEs total health right now. Bows now gives a 132% increase to a weapon's ATK.

Even though they're not far from each other, wandering around the labyrinth by themselves is still impressive.

Maybe I could do that sometime, gahaha!

Smiling as if to congratulate you on your steady progress, the warrior woman greets you.

It seems there are no wolves on this floor yet. I'll give you some advice, before you go back on your way through the forest. The trees are not always as impassable as they look. Finding the hidden paths will allow you to move about more efficiently. Keep an eye out. There's a hidden path around here, in fact. See if you can spot it.

I could do that in my sleep!

I feel like I'm falling asleep.

Without another word, Ren walks away. You glance about, searching for the narrow, hidden path she spoke of.

She seems friendlier. Hopefully there haven't been any paths we've missed.

Without Ren telling you as much, the only way to know if a shortcut is around is to endlessly check the walls if you're close to an earlier part of the floor. Or just use an online map if you want to keep your sanity. Alas, this still requires us getting past both Stalkers, but that's just how it goes.

No one look at my ass!

Like I'd ever do such a thing.

B3F D4 Take Point

Amber Lump. 50% chance. Sells for 27en.
1 required for Bravant (Medicine, increases the target's ATK by 110% for 5 turns)
3 required for Theriaca B (Medicine, removes the target's ailments)
5 required for Nectar (Medicine, revives the target to 18HP, affected by Healer)
10 required for Hamao (Medicine, recovers the target by 300HP and 50TP)
1 required for Pest control

Tiny Petal. 25% chance. Sells for 8en.
1 required for Tweed (Clothing, DEF+1, AGI +1)
10 required for Petal Ring (Accessory, DEF+1, TEC+1)
10 required for Medica II (Medicine, recovers the target by 100HP)
1 required for Remembrance of a friend

Crabapple. 15% chance. Sells for 35en.
5 required for Medica III (Medicine, recovers the target by 200HP)

Now that we have the shortcut open, this is the easier one to get to, especially since you really don't want to pick up Tiny Petals.

...did this deer lay a trap? Nah, that can't be right... could it???

This is what I meant by not all FOEs behaving the same way! Some of them will literally spawn out of nowhere and trap you in an area! That Ragelope is not going to move from that spot. Meaning that the only way out is to either use a Warp Wire, or fight them to the death. And if you forgot to get some Warp Wire... Well, I hope your party is strong enough. Yeah, they stopped having FOEs behave this way in later titles for obvious reasons.

Because Tlachtga let us keep going, it's time to show off something kinda cool.

You picked a bad time to cross me!


Ready... aim...

Good improvement, but being in the back is almost stifling.

One, two, three, as easy as that.


I wonder if I could apply what everyone else is doing...


You're loud, but I'm louder!

Flawless victory.

Now that's what I like to see! While it didn't really affect the battle, Boost is something you can activate after accumulating 100 Boost points, from actions in battle. For a regular attack, it doubles the damage, and for skills, it increases the level of the skill by 5, up to 15. So that was a level 10 Multihit, which does 125% damage three times, which is pretty damn great. Defender was level 8, so was a 65% reduction. Yeah that skill has terrible scaling past level 5, but Boost is great to use for buffs since it'll use that skill level for the entire time. While it's not an amazing mechanic, it's useful enough.

Gaining Boost feels really slow in EO1. In EOU, it takes about 11 or 12 turns for a character to get a full Boost gauge, if they don't have the Dominator equipped and don't know Boost Up.

It can be slow at the start of the game. If you're constantly using skills, you can build it up in at least 15 turns. But you don't really have the TP pools to really use skills yet, but as the game goes on, it's a lot easier to build up Boost.

And that's the entire floor. Man that took like six trips to complete! I'll fill these in properly offscreen, but at least you can make out the path I took throughout the floor.

Notice how there's only one shortcut on the critical path through B3F, and by extension all of B1F through B3F! Good grief.

The Lounge Where We Speak of Tomorrow

10 Gum Hides and 1 Large Fang are required for Beast Bow (Bow, ATK+24, STR+2, TEC+1)

5 Gum Hides and 5 Vines are required for Bullwhip (Whip, ATK+16)

5 Vines and 1 Tiny Petal are required for Leaf Coat (Clothing, DEF+1, AGI+1)

Only one new request? Hey, Ryu, check this one out.

This is a request from Jackson Restaurant, but... well, it's a strange one. He's requesting a person, not a thing. He wants an alchemist who knows the Fire formula. What could he possibly need that for...? Anyways, come back with that alchemist, okay?

Did so before setting foot in the labyrinth.

I'll contact Mr. Jackson. I bet he'll have more work for you too. But I still can't figure out what a restaurateur would need with the Fire formula...

Not the bees.

1 Amber Lump and 1 Mugwort are required for Bravant (Medicine, increases the target's ATK by 110% for 5 turns)

5 Amber Lumps required for Nectar (Medicine, revives the target to 18HP, affected by Healer)

Various items are sneaky in that they are basically identical to using certain skills. This explains why the Bravant is such a mediocre boost, since it's the same as level 1 War Cry, minus the damage taken increase. Nectars are the same as level 1 Revive, so using Revive is still better to save on money, since reviving in such a necessity.

Right, we've explored a good chunk of the first stratum, so now it's time to get out there!

Of course! I will bring honour to this guild, or shall commit seppuku!

No need to go that far dear, though I definitely share your excitement.

Oh this is what I've been waiting for, I'm going to siiiiiiing!

Just don't be loud enough to scare away my masters. Or you'll pay.

Aw man, don't I get a rest?

They'll have a hard enough time getting by without me, so they certainly won't make it far without you.

Just make sure to map everything out and catalogue all you see, I'll support you when I can.

Good luck, guys! The monsters can be scary, but we can be scarier!

Aw yeah, time to blow all our money on equipping another four characters! Might as well get them the best weapons money can buy, though a Beast Bow for Wagner is a bit excessive. But, hmm, what are we going to do about these levels?

Oh yeah, with exp multiplier cheats. Next time, we'll explore the fourth floor with a brand new party!

If you're gonna yell at Crosspeice for cheating, then know that I programmed a save editor to keep all of my characters in EOU equally synced in terms of levels and EXP at the start of each update. Manually leveling up characters and keeping them all within a sensible range is a serious pain in the ass, even with EXP DLC in EO2U and EO5.

Legitimately grinding up more than 5 party members in a game where you're only expected to use 5 party members and where exp intake is a trickle is pretty much madness.