Part 79: DS Real Ninjas Don't Wear PurpleDS Update 22: Real Ninjas Don't Wear Purple
Hello again, everyone! Last time, we got smacked by the runaway plot train, big time. We lost not one, but two of our most badass characters. Things aren't looking too good.
Today, after just barely escaping the Tower of Babil with our lives, we're going to find a way back in there. I'm sure the Flamehounds will be pleased.
Our next destination is Baron, and that's where I'm going. However...
I will not be immediately advancing the plot. I want to pick up some things first. See these little bastards? They, and all their Goblin cousins, drop a special thing for Rydia.
It has the usual bullshit 0.04% drop rate. So, once again, I cheated. The Goblin item will teach Rydia a new summon.
Several enemies drop extra summons, in fact, like these guys.
Like so. There's one more extra summon available right now.
To get it, we have to go back to Troia again.
And hoof it all the way to the Chocobo Village and grab this guy again.
Yep, we're going back to the Lodestone cavern. Again. I swore I wouldn't go back there. This is the last time. I swear.
And just because the monsters there are low-level scrubs doesn't mean we can't get level ups off them!
Hey, every level means more Spirit and more MP, which makes Rosa better at keeping everyone alive. I'm not going to complain!
Ah! A new spell. It's... not very useful. Reflect gets in the way of your ability to heal, more often than not. But it does have its uses.
Our destination is this room.
This isn't the only place where you can find Mindflayers. They appear all over this floor, but I think they're more common in here.
Anyway, there. That's the last extra summon I can get presently. I won't be able to grab the last one until way later in the game.
We're done here for now. Hopefully forever!
Back to Baron we go. First of all, maybe we should tell Cid's daughter about what happened? Just a thought.
Well, Cecil? You going to say anything to her? No? Nothing?
Damn, Cecil is a cold man.
Fine fine. Off to the castle, I guess.
First, let's pay a visit to some of Cecil's old friends.
The Red Wings! Bet you forgot about these guys, huh? I know I sure did!
Seems they're all glad to see their captain. Awww.
Hmm. Now there's an interesting idea! I hadn't thought of that. I suppose the king didn't leave any heirs, and Cecil is the closest thing he had to a son. It could work!
Yeah, so if you were wondering,
Cecil's old comrades haven't been chasing us and burning down people's castles. Golbez stole their ships. That's nice to know.
All right. Enough lollygagging. We have some airship mechanics to talk to. But first, let's hear what the party has to say:
Likely. This is Cid we're talking about, after all.
Yeah, I can hardly believe it myself. Cid...
Knowing Cecil's record for breaking news to people, absolutely nothing.
Wait, hasn't Rydia been here bef- Oh, that's right. I guess she hasn't.
We want to talk to these folks in the blue uniforms. Remember them from the veeeery first update? No? Well, whatever. Let's see what they have to say.
Told us to make a hook, and rig it to the Enterprise for when you came. Won't take but a few minutes!
And so, we fade to the Enterprise, and the Cid's crew gets to work.
Mechanical bangings are heard, and the screen begins to shake wildly.
And the two engineers return.
Just fly over the hovercraft in the Enterprise and press the A button go hoist her up! To set her down, just press the A Button again.
Should even be able to reach the Cave of Eblan down by the Tower of Babil now, eh? Just set the hovercraft down on some solid ground nearby, then use it to cross the shoals.
Hovercraft? Since when do we have- ohhhh. That thing? Oh jeez. Where did we even leave that thing? It's been so long!
Thank you. But, about Cid-
Heh. Quite a handful, I'm sure. You don't have to tell us. The man never rests! If you killed him, he'd probably come right back from the dead and keep on working!
Funny you should mention...
They're not going to listen, are they? Welp. So much for that!
We're kicked back out to the world map. Now, where the hell did we leave that hovercraft? Anyone remember?
Well, at least everyone's all nice and motivated. Still doesn't help me with my current situation...
I jest, of course. I remember where the hovercraft is! It's right where we left it: at the foot of Mount Hobs.
And just in case you did forget it, it's right there on the lower screen!
Anyway, we get the Enterprise in position and press A
And a little hook pops out,
lifts up the hovercraft,
and success! We can now fly anywhere we want, hovercraft in tow!
Our first stop... Oh. I guess since we're in the neighborhood, we should break the news to Yang's wife.
In order to land, we must first drop the hovercraft.
Then we can land like normal. The extra step may not seem like much, but it's a bit annoying. I usually don't cart the hovercraft around unless I need it.
Let's check in with the crew before we go in:
A helpful hint from Cecil, in case we forgot where Eblan is... or if we hadn't gone there already!
Again, Rubicante wiped the floor with a whole country of ninjas. If that's not hardcore, I don't know what is!
Oh yeah! I forgot about Eddie. We should check in with him, too. I'm sure he'll be glad to see that Rydia's alive!
We head right up to Yang's rooms.
Oh boy. Here we go.
He wouldn't let a little thing like that be the end of him! Not my Yang...
Er... on the one hand, denial is one of the stages of grief; on the other, she raises a damn good point!
In any case, let's grab the hovercraft and go check on Eddie!
If only I- if only I were stronger!
... Eddie? It's Rydia! See? She's OK! Don't you have anything to say about it?
Oh now this is just silly! He's lying right there, girl!
I'm a little disappointed that the devs put dialog acknowledging Yang's demise, but nothing for Rydia. This is the first opportunity we've had to go back to the surface after getting Rydia back, after all!
Eh, whatever. Let's just pretend they had a nice, tearful reunion and move on!
Here's Eblan Castle, in case you forgot! This is when the game wants you to come here, but we've already cleaned the place out.
Instead, we're going here. I pointed this cave out back when we first went to Eblan Castle.
Now that we have the hovercraft back, we can explore it! All we have to do is drop the hovercraft, land the airship,
and voila! Now we can cross these shoals and see what the fuss is about.
As an aside, I kind of like this. In other Final Fantasy games, once you get a new vehicle, the older one just gets forgotten entirely. (I'm looking at you, Buggy/Tiny Bronco!) I like that the hovercraft has another purpose after you ditch it next to Mount Hobs.
Anyway, you can park the hovercraft in shallow water. Good thing, too. There's not enough solid ground in front of the cave for that!
Welcome to the Cave of Eblan! It's a short dungeon, but there's plenty of goodies to find.
Eh? What gave you that impression, Cecil? Why would a bunch of ninjas be holed up in a cave? ...Actually that kind of makes sense. Never mind!
They're ninjas. I'm sure they're fine.
We've already confirmed this. And no, the party has nothing to say about Eblan Castle if you go there first.
Quite something, isn't it?
Anyway, the enemies we face here are the same ones we encountered in Eblan Castle, only now we're much higher level. These things pose no threat whatsoever now.
They still give good experience, though!
Yesss! That's the last third level spell! That would have been helpful against Barney and The Doctor, but I wasn't about to grind out three more levels to get it. I'm trying not to over-level myself, here!
Those Leshy are still kicking around, too. Why? Why are these things even here?!
Rydia completely rips the enemies here apart. It's just beautiful.
Ah, two interesting things in this screen!
One, level up for Cecil, which is always good.
The second, is these puppies. Some folks in the thread mentioned a really good piece of equipment that drops from Steel Golems. This is them. The Giant's Gloves are the Steel Golem's semi-rare drop. (The common one being the Gaia's Hammer.) It grants a nice bonus to Defense, as well as a whopping ten points to Strength! Try to get one of these for each of your physical attackers. You won't be disappointed!
In other equipment news, I figure the Flamehound danger has passed, for now.
That means I can put the Flame Shield and Mail back on.
To the south, we find our first treasure! And it's... decent. Vampire Fangs cast Drain when used in battle. Not fantastic, but not terrible either!
Level up for Kain! He keeps getting faster and tougher.
Now, being in ninja country, the Cave of Eblan is just lousy with secret passages. Case in point: how do you get to this chest?
You can't get there from the southeast. Kain can't jump across a two-foot gap, for some reason...
Instead, what you have to do-
Oh. Excuse me. I got jumped. And Rosa levelled up.
Where was I? Oh, yes. Right here, just below the treasure chest. If you've a sharp eye,
you can spot a hole in the wall here!
Bam, bonus treasure chest!
A Shuriken? Sounds like a ninja sort of thing. Sadly, we don't have any ninjas in the party, and no one else can use this. What a waste!
And the fun doesn't stop there. Right next to that chest is another doorway.
And there's that chest from earlier! Remedies are always handy to have around.
While I was making my way back to the main path, more level ups happened.
And again. (Plus more Giant's Gloves, yay!)
The game has just been throwing level ups at me lately. Remember, the party was only in the mid-30's when we set out for the Tower of Babil!
Anyway, now Kain gets a pair of Giant's Gloves too! They give him a 5-point Strength boost from the Power Armlet, plus Defense. These things rock!
A double level up! Those are always nice.
Mm hmm. Mm hmm. Very nice!
And with that, we've completed the first area of the Cave!
Obtained 3 Bacchus's Wines
And the game rewards us with... booze. Huh...
And we wind up, not on another floor of the dungeon! We've arrived in the village of Eblan!
Looks like kind of a rough place...
Yeah, we're even closer to the Tower of Babil than we were before!
I guess, being a white mage, Rosa can sense that kind of thing? We haven't even seen any people yet...
That's a pretty good way to describe ninjas. You're all right, Kain, you know that?
They're ninjas, of course they're not giving up!
Oh! You are men, not monsters.
Ah! Finally, a real live person!
Well, let's have a look around, shall we?
In here we find an Inn,
and an item shop. The item shop sells the usual suspects.
I think this is the first time we've seen Mallets for sale, though. They cure the Mini status. Not really an issue when we have Remedies and Esuna kicking around.
The Mallet is a reference to a Japanese folktale called "One-inch Boy," who is analogous to Tom Thumb. In the story, One-inch Boy finds a magical mallet in an ogre's stomach, which is used to grow him to normal human size. He marries a princess and lives happily ever after.
700 gil?! What the fuck, that's highway robbery! Of course, in order to use a Cottage, I'd have to Teleport out of here and then hike back through the Cave of Eblan, so I drop the cash. The bastard probably knows that, too!
We are the proud people of Eblan.
Fascinating. Through those doors we find more shops!
Here are the weapon shop's offerings. The only things of note here are the Kunai and Boomerang, which no one in the party can equip. Hmm...
Oh, and Poison Arrows, I guess. I pick one up. Couldn't hurt.
It also has more Shurikens like the one we found in that chest.
I have a sneaking suspicion these will come in handy soon, so I buy... a few.
The armor shop's stock. Nothing particularly interesting.
The only new thing is this, but it's inferior to the Luminous Robe Rydia came with. I'll pass.
Our provisions will soon be gone. We cannot remain here forever.
Well, we'd better see if we can do something about that!
The rest of the Eblanese citizens are in here, it seems.
Yeah, I mean... if fucking ninjas couldn't stand up to these guys, I don't think we stand much of a chance!
He has been overseeing the excavation of a tunnel to the Tower of Babil, that we might avenge our fallen king and queen. I've not seen him for some time now, though. I pray he's not done something rash again.
Oh boy. Sounds like Eblan wound up like Damcyan. Damn...
Man, that's devious!
Hey, don't give up yet! Are you ninjas or not?
We'll take care of things. You just stay here with your mum, little guy.
I guess they're holding out OK. Maybe...
Oh hey, looks like I found their provisions! Um... on second thought, maybe I should put these back. These people need them more than we do!
This is... interesting...
Actually, I've never been able to determine what the hell these things do! Maybe someone out there would be willing to enlighten me!
His Young Highness left to scout the passage, but the hour grows late and still he does not return.
Oh hell. He's probably in trouble. I guess we'd better go bail his sorry ass out!
What, did you think we were done with the Cave of Eblan? Hah, that's funny!
What do our friends have to say about this?
And Damcyan's, Cecil. Everyone always forgets Damcyan!
Ugh. Please say there are no more Flamehounds...
Can't it be a little of both?
For our sake, I hope to hell not!
First treasure, within easy reach. Eh. Better than a Potion, I suppose!
There are new enemies in this part of the Cave! These are a royal pain in the fucking ass. I hate these things!
Blood Bats are upgraded Cave Bats. They have 1,491, they're weak to fire, and they're fast as hell.
Just copy and paste this screenshot five times, before you even get a chance to move, and you'll get a feel for the Blood Bat experience. Yes, six times. The Cave Bats move before you do, too.
It's completely pointless, too. All it does is just Sap Cecil for piddling damage six times, and waste waaaaay too much of my time. Fuck these things.
Oh for fuck's sake, not again!
Burn, baby, burn! Damn that feels good!
Good riddance to annoying fucking bats. Ugh. Now, this chest-
Oh what the hell, game? I was right in front of the stinkin' chest! Couldn't you wait until after I opened it, at least?
This looks like the same old Mystery Egg we fought back in the Tower of Babil, but it's actually different!
See? They contain a new enemy! Lamias have 7,480 HP and no particular weaknesses.
They can do this as a counterattack.
It damages you and inflicts various status effects- including Silence and Curse, at least.
Their normal attack looks scary, but the damage isn't. These things aren't much of a threat, really.
Oddly, they're rather evasive, so expect your attacks to miss from time to time.
Death from above!
And that's that!
And now I can open that chest! How... disappointing. Tents just don't cut it anymore.
Something to note here, besides the guy lying on the ground. You can see there's more treasure down there! But how do we get it?
Just a second. I got jumped by another Lamia and... Oh what the hell, game? It's not even funny anymore! Why do enemies keep dropping weapons for characters I'll never be able to use again?! Old weapons, at that.
Murder levels continue to rise.
Nifty, I guess. This might come in handy, someday. Probably not, though. Like with Death, anything you can't outright murder will probably be immune to it anyway!
Anyway, can you spot the secret passage?
And here we are!
Like I said, the Cave of Eblan's "thing" is secret passages, secret passages everywhere! It is a ninja hideout, after all!
There's nothing else down here, so
we'll just move on to the next area.
Two more injured ninjas. I wonder what got them. Must have been nasty if it was able to knock a ninja flat like that!
There's nothing interesting at all up here. All you get is map completion points. Bah.
And chances are, you'll get jumped on the way back. Getting jumped is profitable, though, so I don't mind. Much.
Whoopie! I don't imagine I'll ever use one of these...
Double level up again! These make me happy. I don't know why...
The "bestest bros 4 lyfe" get even stronger!
Here's another puzzle. There's one chest here (the one with the Bomb Core), but you can see another one just down that ledge. A 3-foot ledge is just as impassable as a 2-foot gap, so we'll have to come back for it later.
For now, we'll continue to the south,
back to the First Passage,
where we can grab these chests!
Free Cottages are always nice! I actually need them now.
Meh. Well, at least one... out of three had something worthwhile!
Yep, we're definitely going to have to rescue this guy, aren't we?
This chest is in the far southwest corner. Eh, into the pile it goes, I guess.
And to the east, more chests! Yes, I like chests. Chests contain treasure!
Using a loose definition of "treasure," I suppose...
OK, these are useful.
Now, as you can see, there are more chests up here, to east of the entrance. In order to get them,
you have to slip through here. Good luck finding that without a guide. Yeesh...
Once again, we get jumped in the void, and profit from it.
And now we're free to claim our prizes!
What's this? Useful prizes? Whatever is the world coming to? Elixirs are stupid rare, and stupid expensive once you can buy them. I'll never turn my nose up at free ones!
Another battle, and another level up while I make my way back to the east.
And thus, First Passage complete!
Obtained 3 Hermes Sandals
I could see these coming in handy if I need to cast Haste on a bunch of people in a hurry. I'll try to remember I have them...
Making our way north, we find ourselves in the Second Passage again.
Only now we can nab some more treasure. I'll add this to the pile. Maybe I'll find a use for them soon...
Eh. Unless Rosa gets Petrified, I don't see myself needing any of these.
Continuing to the north,
we stumble across a save point. That's nice.
I never turn down the opportunity to rest up and save, even if I don't think I need it.
Now, as you can see on the lower screen, there's treasure here too!
In order to reach it...
more secret passage shenanigans. Were you expecting anything else at this point, really?
We pop out in this small room. What's that tombstone doing in such an out of the way place?
Pfft. Oh, please. Like this is supposed to be a challenge. At all.
Best bro level up, again.
Here's what we got from that chest. It's just like the Blood Lance, only a sword. It still sucks. 5-point stat penalty across the board, and 30 less attack than the Icebrand? No thank you!
After saving again, we're ready to head north.
Uh oh. Looks like we've found our prince. And Rubicante. Here we go...
Should I know you from somewhere?
Oh my. Purple? And you call yourself a ninja! Also, is his right hand attached to his cape? Really?
Oh fantastic. We've found our prince, indeed.
Cool as a cucumber, that Rubicante.
Yep, his cape is definitely attached to his hand.
So, Rubicante, archfiend of fire.
And Edge has to face him alone. Good luck with that, buddy!
Good luck, indeed.
Things aren't looking good for our prince, are they?
No, you fool, don't do that!
Sure, it's an impressive-looking attack, but...
Rubicante is the archfiend of fire you nincompoop! Of course he absorbs fire attacks!
My thoughts exactly.
Allow me to show you real flame!
Yep, he's fucked.
He'll be lucky if there's enough left for a proper burial.
And so ends the Eblanese royal line.
You've strength enough worthy of pride, but not nearly enough to think of challenging me.
He already schooled you once, buddy. Don't push your luck!
The cavalry has arrived.
Very succinctly put.
We came to find Rubicante, too, and the Crystals he holds.
Rubicante's mine! You stay out of this! I'm going to put an end to him... with my own hands!
Oh dear. Where have I heard this before?
Your enemy is an elemental archfiend, Your Highness.
Yes, a fire elemental archfiend, just in case it wasn't obvious.
You've seen his strength for yourself.
As well as his affinity for fire. I mean, come now!
Heh... Don't mistake me for some pampered prince. The Eblanese royal family is heir to the secrets of the ninja masters of old. I don't need help from lesser men!
Don't worry, Edge. No one was mistaking you for a pampered prince. A moron, on the other hand...
Uh oh. Looks like Rydia's had it!
First Tellah and Yang... And then Cid, too... All of them... all of them-!
H-hey, I didn't... I mean...
Good job, Rydia. That got through to him!
But we have no choice. We must take back the Crystals he holds!
Let's do this together, then- just this once.
Kain's the greatest sometimes.
Rosa, do you think you could...?
That was an awful fast recovery.
Woo hoo! New party member! I've been... semi looking forward to this.
That's a nice way of putting it...
This is more accurate!
So, here's our new friend. He's plenty fast and plenty strong, but he has the defenses of a wet paper bag.
He comes equipped with not one, but two Kunai. He's the only character (besides Yang) who can dual wield, so that's something. He can also use daggers, but Kunai are better.
He also gets one of these, which helps his offense a bit, even if it does tank his defense somewhat... I'll see about getting him a pair of Giant's Gloves before we tackle the Tower.
For now, let's do something about his durability.
We picked this thing up back in the Developer's Room in the Dwarven Castle, if you recall.
It's practically tailor-made for Edge!
I slap this on him too
because, why not?
While I'm here, remember those rare summons I picked up?
Well, we have to teach them to Rydia before she can use them.
So, let's do that!
Can't show them off if I don't use them, after all!
And that would be a terrible waste of all that effort of putting in cheat codes.
Enough silliness. Let's get Edge outfitted properly. The Reach Augment does wonders for his survivability. With it, he can do full damage from the back row!
He defaults to the front row, but he's not nearly durable enough to be there.
That's better. He can hang out in the back row with the girls. I'm sure he won't mind.
And that's about it! Next time, we'll get Edge some Giant's Gloves and charge onwards to the Tower of Babil!
Before I leave you, here are those extra summons in action, as promised: