Part 6: This Update has DWARVES in It
Now that the whirlpool is gone, we have access to the entire continent. Let's go exploring, shall we?
If we go east, then all the way south, we reach this little town at the edge of the continent. I probably wouldn't want to live near the edge of a floating landmass myself.
This is where the remnants of the ancients live. I hope they have good stuff.
At this stage of the game, you gain access to Hi-Potions, which are very pricey. I hold off on them for now, though I'm loaded enough to get more Potions.
If only we had access to a Chocobo.
The weapons you can find elsewhere, but it's still nice to be able to buy them. There's a couple armor upgrades I haven't found yet, but nothing Stalin can make use of.
One aspect of FF3's story I enjoy is the whole light/dark balance, and how it's not necessarily associated with good and evil. In this case, the world relied so heavily on the crystals that dark warriors had to be summoned to save the world from light. That's not something you see in most stories.
If I were going with White Magic, I'd make such heavy use out of Exit. I'm not, so I don't buy anything. This is also I believe the first time we can buy Sight, which gives us a bird's eye view of the world around us. Meh.
To the east is a Chocobo's Forest. You know what we must do.
Chocobos aren't as ingrained into this game as they are in future FF's, but they're still around and kicking. We can't really go anywhere except around the continent, so let's do that and prove how awesome we are to that kid.
There's a couple caverns surrounded by mountains. We can't access these areas even if we had an airship.
On the eastern side of the continent is another town we'll visit shortly.
Oh fuck you.
Tiny Pans are the same as the Sight spell, which we could've bought back in the Midget Village. FF5's prize for this was much better.
Gisahl is an...interesting place. The first thing you'll notice is the very odd-sounding music. The second thing you'll notice is that there's a lot of sheep.
They have no weapon/armor stores, but they do carry L4 magic, which generally sucks. Ice-3 and maybe Stop are all that's worth it. Stone only inflicts gradual petrification, and the status spells are rather useless.
I can't wait for the Big Chocobo, because I really need some damn inventory space.
Hey, what's this?
Man: Who, me? Oh, I'm nobody, nobody at all. I didn't translate this entire game in my free time or anything. Nope, not me. So of course there are no extras, like holding down B while walking around towns for a speed boost. Pressing Up and A on the intro screen doesn't do anything, either. And for the love of Square, DON'T hold down Select while you're setting the battle message speed...!
I think the select thing lets you adjust for higher message speeds, which I don't really want since I'd have to go frame-hunting to show off windows. No idea what the Up/A thing is. I'll try that later. And of course I'm abusing the B dash.
You're a sick fuck, Mr. Translator.
I don't have any HiPotions right now, but let's try my FenixDown.
Meh, I'll show those off later since he talks about jobs we don't have yet.
The item shop only sells Carrots, which we need to summon the Big Chocobo.
This guy sells Magic Keys, which we need to unlock certain doors.
Oh, hello there! A Shuriken is a rather unique weapon, one we won't be seeing for a long time.
Using a Carrot here summons a Big Chocobo. Big Chocobos are great for managing our meager storage space, meaning I can store stuff I never use like attack items, equipment, and spells for when I actually need them. It's nice to have room for new stuff.
I totally waited until I had Magic Keys to explore the rest of the castle. I did not forget that there was a whole other part to the castle!
To be fair, though, the only thing I missed out on earlier was nine chests of gil. Nice to have, but nothing I needed in Owen Tower.
There are two doors on the side that you need the Magic Keys to unlock.
The equipment consists of a bow, elemental arrows, books, and a Scholar garb. While Stalin can make use of the bow, he can make better use of his swords. No job can make use of the books right now.
The Dwarven Cave is to the northwest of Owen Tower.
In FF3, dwarves are skinny and wear orange hoods. At least the translator kept their catchphrase intact.
Our next mission is to get back their missing horn from a guy name Gutzko, who must be evil considering how ridiculous his name is.
Sounds to me like there's a crystal up there. Unfortunately, we can't head up there yet.
I think the Shining Staff is the only new weapon, but the Ice equipment is new. I hold off, thinking I'll find some in the next dungeon (I don't).
OH GOD DAMMIT
So under the Dwarven Cave is a dungeon.
Bombs go down easily and probably explode if left alive long enough.
Manticores love to use Ice spells. Fortunately, I have Fire armor equipped, which just happens to reduce the damage done by ice spells, making these guys trivial.
The third floor is actually quite scenic, located right on an underground pool of water.
I don't let the Sea Devil or Evil Wave live long enough to see what they do.
It's a pretty short dungeon, overall. Let's take on the boss.
Gutzko can be brutal if you're not prepared.
Needless to say, I wasn't prepared.
I figure, it's a short dungeon. I'll just be reckless and see if that works out for me. It didn't.
I forgot to restock for my second trip, so I didn't really plan to win again.
Which is good, because I learned these Stalactite enemies can petrify me, which counts as a death.
I've learned my lesson. I buy the ice equipment and some HiPotions.
There's Mermen down here as well, but again, my Fire armor stops him.
Fighting Gutzko again, I've got my ice gear on. Remember how my Fire armor reduces ice damage?
Same principle applies. Gutzko goes from a tough fight to a complete joke.
We get the dwarf horn and head back. Along the way, this line follows us. Odd.
Dwarf: You can cross now. Put the horn on the dais!
So Gutzko disguised himself as a white line and stole both horns. Well, that's a shame.
Well, he did say please.
Fire Cave is where the Fire Crystal resides, and where Gutzko fled to.
You don't take damage when walking through lava, which is awesome.
Kurokottas just hit hard. Stalin's sturdy enough now that he doesn't need to hide in the back row against these guys, but it beats blowing through Potions.
Balloons are upgraded Bombs, and I manage to show this one exploding for large damage. Red Jellies don't seem to do much.
In the next room, I find the Freeze sword, a welcome upgrade for this dungeon.
While walking in lava itself doesn't hurt you, lavafalls do. As do ordinary waterfalls, as a matter of fact.
At this point, Stalin's killing everything so quickly that I don't even know what half these enemies can do. I give him the Ice Shield and he still wipes stuff out with only the Freeze Sword.
Stalin's powerful enough now that the dungeon ends up being easy. Here we are at the Fire Crystal Room, ready to face off against Gutzko again.
Gutzko has transformed into Salamander.
I'm going pure offense, and 500 damage a pop can fucking hurt the bosses. Salamander can only handle a few of those.
Salamander's big attack is Blaze, which hits everyone for big fire damage. When you're dealing only with one fire-resistant character who can deal huge damage, though, it becomes rather underwhelming.
Fire resistence makes this whole dungeon and boss a breeze.
After that, we exit out the teleporter.
You know what this means!
Four new jobs are available. Hunters specialize in bows and can use some low-level white magic. Knights are essentially Fighters with more Vitality, which means better HP gains. Thieves can steal, have a better run option, and some unique weapons that we won't have access to for awhile. Scholars are a peculiar class that attacks with elemental books, which can actually hit pretty hard, with their special ability allowing them to look at enemy HP and weaknesses. Scholars would actually be half-decent if they didn't have the lowest Vitality in the game, which really hurts their use.
As a Knight, Stalin gains more Vitality, but a sturdier Fighter is fantastic right now. Ignore the right stats, since Knight Stalin isn't equipped (meaning he may have better stats anyway than Fighter, with equipment throwing things off).
Next time, we fight another pain-in-the-ass gimmick boss and maybe finally get a damn airship.
Update Death Counter: 2
Total Death Counter: 25