Part 10: Moon Dragoon
First stop today is the Mythril Cave because I wanna see what changed here.
So this dungeon is new and cool-looking. Don't recognize it from anywhere, but it's certainly not the one from The After Years.
The enemies aren't very exciting either.
The penultimate hammer, it's bolt-elemental but otherwise is just really strong.
Casts Drain when used as an item, which under Edge is probably actually pretty good damage.
Technically the strongest harp, and also wrecks giants and slimes (and zombies, though I don't recommend doing that). Like the Blood Sword, it also absorbs HP, but drops all stats by 5. That last part is kind of a dealbreaker since I rarely attack with Edward anyway between Regen and his songs.
The dungeon's rather linear until the end, where it leads to two doors.
The right leads to a save point, the dungeon exit...
...and this beauty hiding off to the side.
The left leads to...Yang? OK, sure. I was wanting to recruit him anyway, so this works out.
Also some treasures! The Triton dagger wrecks reptiles, can cast Hold, is ice-elemental, and boosts Agility, Wisdom, and Will by 10. This is great for someone like Edward who rarely attacks anyway.
Slasher also is ice-elemental and wrecks reptiles. It's also better than any of Kain's spears if you don't care about Jump or Lance.
Oh, right, Yang.
Cecil! I could use your help! The King of Fabul has been poisoned and needs the SeaRuby. We need to get it from this monster's nest.
The, uh...Sealion...is a one-trick pony.
That trick is very nasty, though. Thankfully, it's slow to go off, and Kain and Rydia dodge them pretty effortlessly.
Edward and Cecil aren't worth keeping alive, so Kain Jumps, Rydia Titans, and Yang punches/throws items.
Now let's go heal the King!
Also Yang joined the party. Sweet.
Also let's get this out of the way.
Cecil, take this sword. A Holy Knight who came to Fabul left this long ago.
This would be nice, except the Defender outclasses it in every possible aspect.
At this point, I'm out of things to buy and am swimming in money, so I stock up on consumables, including 99 X-Potions.
Giving the Adamant Ore to the smithy nets the Ragnarok, a two-handed blade that's one of the strongest weapons in the game, outclassed only by the ultimate hammer and the ultimate dark and light swords. It also boosts Strength and Vitality by 15 each, and of course is Holy-elemental. If you want Cecil to focus on offense, this baby will serve you well.
This also opens the shop up, giving you a decent place to stock up on the high-end shurikens and arrows.
Next up, what happens now with Odin?
Cecil! It warms my heart to see you once more, my son...
It broke my heart to see him pass at such a young age... Even my wife's skills as a Paladin could not save him in that battle near Fabul that took place so long ago...
Oh yeah, Kain's father is Ricard Highwind, a clever nod to the series' first dragoon, Ricard from FF2 (and later versions named the kid Kain, even though it wasn't actually Ricard's family, but a friend's family he was trying to weasel his way into until he died due to being in FF2). And Cecil's adoptive mother was a Paladin because, well, why not? Though a Dark Knight and Paladin marrying had to have a bit of awkwardness involved.
I'm proud of you, my son. I have something for you that will be useful in vanquishing Golbez. But first...
Odin's pretty much unchanged.
A few heavy physicals, then a short time of raising his sword, then massive damage. Like before, this is a giant damage race.
This was the point I switched Edward from the Blood Hard to the Triton Dagger, and getting the buffs off that much quicker (it was a net 15 Agility increase, after all) made all the difference.
15-point Will boost. Ragnarok is stronger and has better stat boosts, but Excalibur lets you use a shield and boosts Cecil's White Magic, so it comes down to your gameplay preferences. At least it's an actual improvement on the Defender.
But yeah, the nonlinear structure kinda hurts a bit when you get Paladin Cecil during this, meaning there's no good way to set up a natural weapon progression for him like the other characters.
Thank you, and farewell...Father!
OK let's go to the freakin' moon.
Hummingways don't really have much. The item shop is gone (Mysidia has similar stock anyway), but Namingway's still hiding here. There's also a stairway behind this Hummingway but no clue how to get to it.
The other point of interest is Bahamut's Cave.
There's four pieces of Dragon armor here. No stat boosts, but they all resist Fire, Ice, and Lightning, and they're direct upgrades from the Genji stuff.
Kain gets the shield, Cecil gets the rest.
Cecil picks up Harm, so undead should be easier to wreck now.
Anyway, Bahamut's more chatty in this version.
...Thou art a special one indeed... who art thou?
Conceited much, Cecil?
Yes... thou seemst familiar... Ricard, is it not?
Ricard was my father's name. I strive to live up to his legacy.
And so it shall be.
Thou wishest to transcend mastery of Dragoonhood and surpass even your father?
Then I shall train thee myself. But first I require proof of thy courage.
OK I think I like Rydia even more in this hack.
Well that's neat to know, I guess.
Don't worry Kain, we can take him!
NO! Thy comrades cannot help thee. Thou must pass or fail this test by thine own merit.
I am ready.
Then let us begin.
You know the deal. Time your Jumps right to win. Mistime them and...
Turns out just spamming Jump as soon as possible got me to an easy victory.
Though it is rather weird that Kain literally has to do a solo fight to leave the party, but what can you do.
Well, Kain's gone now. This was going to be my final party and everything. Oh well.
Next time I guess I get Rosa and may try to tackle the final dungeon or something. Guess we'll find out soon!