Part 3: The Original Kings of WeaponryChapter 2: The Original Kings of Weaponry
Alright, I'm beat. Before we do anything else, I need some rest.
What? We walked, like, two klicks at most.
Yeah, fighting the entire way.
Freakin' civvies. I can't imagine what you guys are gonna sound like the first time we have a multi-day march.
Whatevs. You guys do what you want, I'm gonna nap.
Someone should keep an eye on that one. I'll see you later.
Hurt Rezen, monster, and Trog smash. You know now?
Your loyalty, however misguided, is admirable.
Welcome to the Hero's Respite. How can I help you today?
Bed. Sleep. Now.
Well okay then.
Inns in FFL are a bit odd. Rather than pay an upfront fee to recharge everyone...
...you pay one gold per hitpoint. You can't do partial refills; if you don't have the gold, you can fuck right off. This can literally lead to a death spiral if you don't manage your party well enough. Also note that, even if you have full HP, you still need to stay at an inn to recharge abilities. Fortunately, you don't have to pay extra for it.
The best thing to do is top off as soon as possible after fights, even while grinding. It's less expensive in the long run and makes sure you don't get caught flat-footed.
Plus you get this adorable message after staying.
Well, I guess that just leaves us.
Trog explore! Make new friends! Learn stories!
Elly shop. Get fresh weapons. Find out prices.
Is good, yes?
Is good, sure.
Ah! Trog know this place by smell. Also by sign on door.
Is like being home. Trog mingle! You there, jellyfish!
One of 'em takes some land, another invades it... we've changed hands so many times I honestly don't know who's in charge anymore.
Is boring. Next!
No fun. Next!
Ah, now this is party. Greetings! I am Trog.
Interesting. Humans usually don't speak to us, let alone sit down uninvited. We are the brothers Menaechmus. I am Westwing.
I am Northwing
Yes, as previously established.
Ha, funny bird! We drink?
That's why we're here, isn't it?
Now here's a woman that looks like she demands the best.
Negative. I look like a woman who couldn't afford the best if she wanted it.
Heh. You army?
Pvt. Elsom, 3rd division.
41st air support. Retired lieutenant.
Sir! I didn't know who I was addressing, sir.
You don't have to salute me, private. I'm long since out of the game. 'Sides, it's not like I did that much. You know what they call air support behind our backs, right?
Back at the bar...
Is advice. Er, it's advice.
People adore their statue, but it gives me a nasty vibe. Keep an eye on it.
Cannot remove eye. Trog try once. Never again.
You're alright, Trog. You're alright.
*yawn* Hi! Can I ask you a few questions?
That's... not really what I asked. Is he okay?
Tour guide. After a while, it gets to be automatic.
Huh what?! Sorry, fell asleep for a second there.
You should see a doctor, you know. Narcolepsy is not an affliction to be trifled with.
.... zzz. See our wonderful statue. Pride of the land. Zzz.
Well, you guys do have a nice town here.
Oh, yes. The town of Hero has always treated me well. When the dread lord Cthulhu rises from the unfathomable depths to usher in a new era of madness, I do hope they're the first to go. They certainly deserve to be spared the endless eons of agony.
Have you seen our statue? It's wonderful!
We're leaving now. Don't follow us.
Plus ça change.
It's a good thing they haven't seen our statue, or they'd fight over it instead!
Hey, weren't you a bird a few minutes ago?
I try not to go longer than 4 hours between meals. It's healthier.
That does not answer my question at all. Hey, you! What's your story?
When the statue...
Nowadays, no one visits the tower.
Yeah. Even in Base Town, we're not really sure what—
But everyone visits our statue!
Statue! Statue statue. Statue?
Alright we'll look at your stupid statue jeez
This is what all the fuss is about?
Come now. It may not be a masterpiece, but it's a remarkably well-preserved example of pre-renaissance sculpture.
If you say so. Hmm. There's...
I just can't put my finger on what.
Ugh, how many times do we have to go over this?
Sorry, you get screamed at by an E-8 for a few weeks and it becomes a reflex. I took a look around the shops. Everything's really pricey. We can't afford better gear in our current state.
Ho, travellers! Trog return!
Well, it's about time you oh my god you smell like a distillery
Trog drink! Trog SING! New friends!
You've drunk all the alcohol in our stock! You've ruined us!
Trog do good! You have story?
I'll tell you anything you want to know, just get out of my bar!
Where man in charge of town? Trog meet!
Whatever he does to me for telling you, it can't possibly be worse than this! Now leave!
Ha, Trog like you! One day, he return!
Oh god whyyyyyy
Is story of what happen.
Elly? I can't help but notice you're carrying a bow now.
Oh, yeah. Funny story...
Alright, old timer. My team's looking for me, I best be on my way.
Hey. Before you go, I want you to take a look at this.
I appreciate it, but I really don't have any—
Just hear me out. See this bow?
This is the first bow I got as air support. I still remember shooting albatrosses down with it to keep traffic safe. It was a better time back then.
Well, here's hoping those days come back.
They will—with the help of young hotshots like you. And that's why I want you to have it.
Go on, take it. It's not much use to me anymore.
Oh... I can't accept your first bow. Not for free.
Don't make me pull rank on you, private.
No... look, here's what I'll do. I got 50 gold left. It's all I have, but I want you to take it. You shouldn't just give a piece of your life away like that. It's disrepectful.
You're a good kid, Elsom. You'll go far.
I hope so. You take care of yourself.
Give 'em one for me. Semper fi!
...so, yeah. If you guys are pissed, I understand.
I think it's sweet. You're carrying on his legacy.
Hey, I recognize that bow.
Yeah. I'm taking it out of retirement.
Oh no. Let me guess: "Do some good with it, kid?"
I hate to break it to you, but Old Man Lonagan's been pulling that scam for years. He was discharged after one tour of duty and sells overpriced weapons to tourists.
I see it happen on a daily basis. How much did he get out of you?
Fifty gold, okay? Fifty.
Bless your heart, he buys them in bulk for five apiece.
Troop, I am about to commit an act of homicide. I would recommend reporting it to the proper authorities so you're not considered accessories.
Trog help! Is helper!
Elly, did you want the bow?
Well, yeah, but...
No buts! If you wanted it, that's all that matters.
... ... Yes ma'am!
Ah! Apologies for my absence, I was speaking to the local guard. This man has something very interesting to say.
Monsters have breached the town! We've had reports of albatrosses and wererats wandering the streets!
Well, that's no good.
We need all able hands to stamp down overpopulation.
Any pay involved in this?
Modest compensation. Though as independent contractors, you foot your own equipment.
I think that's as good a deal as we're gonna get.
Guess it's a couple weeks of guard duty, then!
As army here say: HOO HAH!
Patrollin' the town. Patrollin' the town. Runnin' round in circles, walking up and down~
What are you doing?
I sing to myself when I'm bored! It helps pass the time.
Yup, it's time for grinding. As always, I fast forward through these parts. Imagine a finger stamping on the A button, forever.
I will show off monsters a bit. We've already seen lizards and goblins. In addition, there are...
...albatrosses, which we've already seen in our party. The game is consistent about enemy stats and party stats being the same, which also helps scout your opponents, as there's no Sight spell in FFL. Beak still hits hard, but it's not going to drop anyone in one hit.
In singles, skeletons are laughable. In packs, they're on par with a lizard fight. However! Since there's three of them, you get three times the gold. They also have the pimpest hats since Final Fantasy red mages.
This is a zombie. Or Robert Smith, I'm honestly not sure which. Either way, it's a 60 HP monster that hits fairly hard. They're not going to KO anyone in one punch, but you'll definitely want hit the inn after.
Also there are samurai.
Thanks. I think I'm finally getting the hang of—wait, who are you?
...Dente? I've been here for some time.
Huh. Well, whatever.
Bows are neat weapons that convey a lot of advantages. First of all, they're agility based. They're also more powerful than rapiers, while being only slightly more expensive. (It does seem easier to miss, though.) What's really exciting is that they don't count as strikes, so skin attacks don't work. More on this later.
Ha! Trog fight along friends! Is unstoppable! Will conquer all!
Might want to hold your fire there, cowboy. Rezen's not looking so good.
Oh no... not again... not now...
...christ, looks like she's going to keel over on....
...oregano, plus a dash of basil. Best to keep the sinews...
...pay more attention. What, ho? She glances at me as I think?...
...eyes should be moving like that? I...
...Elly! Behind you!
Holy hell! Where did he come from?!
He's coming from the left! Stay low!
Wha—how do you know that?
Tasty human! EAT!
Just trust me!
Rezen has gained her first mutant ability! ESP gives some bonuses to dodge and hit. Nothing spectacular, but it means she's levelling up!
You not be coming back from where Trog send you!
Great work. Now, Rezen, would you kindly explain what in the ever-loving hell just happened?
...I don't want to talk about it.
Nuh uhn, you're not getting off that easy. You knew where it was coming from. You knew what attack it was going to use. You even knew where it was going to strike! What the hell is going on?
Please, Rezen. If we're going to travel together, we have to know.
How is different? Have two arms, legs, a nose.
Ever since I was little, I've had these... powers. I never know when they'll start or how long they'll last. That's how I knew. I could hear its thoughts. Your thoughts.
...Hoooo leeee crap.
So, you can hear this? As I'm thinking it?
Go on, say it. "Freaky."
... Stop making fun of me.
I'm serious here! You have an amazing gift!
Even we monsters must change forms to gain powers. You, my dear, are something else entirely. It's like you're constantly evolving.
Where Trog come from, witches wise. Consult before battle. Much power lend! Great respect.
*sniffle* Thank you, everyone.
Is not mentioning it.
Hey, here's an idea to cheer you up. Let's dump our newfound gold into a kiddie pool and roll around in it!
We're finally able to afford armor! With a full loadout, only lizards and zombies can get through. Encounters that shell out 120 gold plus monsters that barely scratch your party equals a Very Good Thingtm.
We have 200 gold left over, so now's a good time to show off stat boosts:
Don't be fooled by the name. While I would love nothing more than to rocket up to 240 HP, 200 is the cap, not the amount. When used...
...humans will gain a small but respectable amount of HP. Here, Elly gained 9, and Trog spiked a whopping 17.
You can also see that Rezen's stats are ticking upwards. She's gained a point of strength, a buttload of agility, and her mana is increasing for reasons I'm still not entirely clear on. Also note how her weapon is a saber. I called it a rapier in previous updates. This is because I am immensely unobservant. We buy a rapier for 24G and swap it out for when the shit hits the fan.
Alright, at least we're not target dummies anymore. What should we do first?
I'unno. Randomly pester royalty?
Sounds good to me!
Weird how they put a castle right next to the town.
It's to remind serfs who their master is.
Oh hey, you're a bird again.
And you're observant.
We'll have to request an audience. I bet the guards could help. Excuse me...
That could've gone better.
Wait. Did you hear how he said, "Get out?"
Yes, I did notice him saying that right before he threw us out of the castle.
I've got a plan. Follow my lead.
Hey. Do you have... stairs in your castle?
That usually works.
I think this might require a little more subtlety than we're used to. Follow me.
Remember: Keep calm, and try to blend in.
Hello! Is nothing unusual! Trog do guarding!
This whole castle gives me the creeps. The guards throw you out just for talking to them. The rest of the time, they shuffle around like zombies.
Well, at least we know what not to do. Stay away from the guards. Hopefully, the king'll know what's going on.
...your majesty? Sir?
How dare you address King Reginald Shield XIV, commoner! Bow and wait to be spoken to!
I'm sorry, and you are...?
Steward of Shield, caretaker of the throne, acting ruler of the fiefdom.
That's a pretty big title for such a little prick.
Now shut it, the adults are talking.
My lord, you don't look well.
Please don't be lifest, Rezen. It's unbecoming.
Dente, I don't think this guy is supposed to be a zombie. I mean, not yet. He might be! One day.
Am I being racist? I can't even tell anymore.
O...kay? We didn't ask for it?
...King's personal treasure! You won't have it! Guards! Guards! G—HRK
Shh. Listen now, funny man.
Trog and friends go. But we know you hurt king.
C'mon, Trog. We gotta get out of here before the cavalry arrives.
Turn to sky, prepare self before gods. We return.
That was highly unnecessary.
But god DAMN it was fun to watch.
There's clearly some funny business going down at Castle Shield, but there's not much we can do now except pester the steward and get thrown out. We'll come back later. A quick stop by the Town of Hero to fill up our HP, and it's time to go exploring! There's a break in the mountain range behind Castle Shield, so let's poke our noses in there.
Give me land, lots of land, under starry skies above... don't feeeeeence me in
Let me roam through the wide open country that I love.... don't feeeeeence me iiiiiiiiiin~
Hey, another castle!
I hope this goes better than last time.
I'm pretty sure it couldn't go worse.
Hiya! Are you guys jerks?
Nope! Well, except for Carl.
Man, fuck you guys.
Who's in charge around here?
King Francis Leon Armor XXV, Protector of the People. You guys adventurers?
We didn't hike all the way out here for our health!
Speak for self only. Trog exercise! Opens chest.
Great! In that case, King Armor would...
Right this way.
Now this is the kind of welcome I can get behind.
Greetings, travellers! Welcome to my court.
Pardon our intrusion, but...
The human condition, my good fellow. No armor can protect my heart, for it is already broken.
Ah, 'tis a universal condition, not just human.
I loved a girl once, young and fair. She decided she no longer loved me.
Strange she would spur your affections so suddenly.
Yeah, this doesn't smell right.
Is still not Trog.
Maybe we can talk to her? At the very least, we can find out what happened.
If you could do that...
That is a very generous offer, and we accept.
She lives in the village to the south. Safe travels.
I can't go down to the water's edge
I didn't do it, man, I saw who did~
At least the people look friendly. That's more than I can say for Castle Shield.
Welcome to our village! We don't get many travellers. Mind if I ask where you're from?
Most from Base Town. Trog of elsewhere.
My goodness! What brings you all the way out here?
It's kind of a long story.
I see. Travelled to the west much?
Word of advice, then. King Sword is...
If you see a castle to the west, stay away.
Something tells me we're going to blatantly ignore your advice in the very near future.
Excuse me! We're looking for someone.
A girl? Well...
Uh. Have you guys noticed something?
Greetings! Please, take a look at our fine wares.
Neat! I didn't know you had a hot springs here!
Good for the joints.
You have joints?
No, but it'd be good for them if I did!
You guys! This is a slime town!
Judging by her beauty, I believe this is the young lady we seek.
Oh. Oh no. No way.
...Did the king send you?
Yes, my dear.
...the King down? Did you not love him?
No, it wasn't that... It's just... Oh, forgive me! I had no choice! The Bandit King will destroy our...
I couldn't tell anyone!
Is clobbering time. You there! Where bandits?
You're not actually thinking of going in there, are you?
Trog never think. Trog do.
This has seriously been the weirdest day of my life.
We're going to kick the ass of a thief who's stolen a slime from the king. Doesn't that strike you as odd?
I mean, how does that even work? "Great mitochondria, honey, let's go back to my castle and—"
What's it like being such a hateful racist?
Wha? I didn't mean—
Yes, you did. My spouse is a slime, and I would thank you to stop talking now.
Well, this is the only cave in the area. Everyone ready?
Yes—unless I'm making Elly uncomfortable. Does being in a party with a monster make you uncomfortable? Would you rather I be a human?
Yeah, we should've known there would be guards.
We'll have to slip by quietly.
Thieves! Day of reckoning comes!
Well, so much for the element of surprise.
Being a dope and talking to the guards sets off a fight with 2-3 lizards. Beating them doesn't remove them from the map, so you can keep at it as long as you want. It's a mid-range fight and a decent way to grind, but you're probably better off beating up skeletons for their lunch money. Also, there's this:
Hey. Hey, Dente.
That meat just now.
What about it?
When you were eating it, would say you were gobbl—
For our first "dungeon," there's absolutely nothing exciting about the Bandit's Lair. The monsters are the same ones we fought in the overworld, right down to the lizard guards. So, it's kind of a shock to the system when you get to the end and...
That must be the bandit king!
A frog? Sure. Sure, why not.
I am not a racist I'm just pointing out the obvious
Eh? Who are you?
Slime town sends greetings. We fight!
Don't make me laugh, scrub. I got adamantium fangs. What do you have? A halfwit, a teenager, and some podunk goblin from—
You fuck with my troop, you fuck with me.
Meet the P-Frog, our first boss! He's actually a random encounter from later levels, but at this point in the game, he's a pretty big hurdle. Let's go to the footage:
Okay, here's what up. This was originally supposed to be a scouting fight. I expected the party to get wiped. In fact, their first round of combat, they combined for 1 of 4 attacks for a whopping 9 damage. Then:
I can't hit him! He's moving too fast!
Skin too mighty! Teeth too sharp!
Can't say I didn't warn you guys. Hope you're tastier than the last group.
My final request is that you prepare me with a mint chutney and a snifter of VSOP brandy.
Goblin, i'mma eat you raw.
Rezen, we need your gift! Listen to his thoughts! Tell us where his weak point is!
Please! You're the only hope we have left!
Enough of this, I'm bored. You bore me. The girl's firs—OW!
MY TOOTH! HOW DID YOU BREAK MY TOOTH?!
...because I have a new gift now.
Rezen had quietly picked up Armor on the walk over. And Armor is ridiculous.
You get three uses of Armor before you have to recharge it, and it only works on the user. Since this was meant to be a prep fight, I decided to try it and see how big the difference was. I was immediately informed that Rezen's defense had increased by 99 points. As in, the maximum stat value possible for mutants.
This does not mean no damage to Rezen ever again. It only protects against physical damage; magic and elemental abilities will still pass through. With that being said, Rezen is not only impervious to physical attacks but the only one with enough agility to damage the boss. And so, Rezen and the boss go one-on-one in an epic pier-six brawl.
One problem, though...
Is amazing! Friend Rezen cannot hurt!
But she's slowing down! Why is she slowing down?
Gack... c-can't breathe... eyes blurry...
You thought it'd be that easy? I got tricks up my sleeve you don't even know about.
The P-Frog's main ability is P-Skin. He skips his attack when he activates it, and if you hit him that round, you're poisoned. The original plan was to use Elly's bow, as it's a projectile attack and isn't affected. Unfortunately, he's too powerful to hit. With Rezen poisoned but protected by Armor, this whole fight becomes a footrace.
And you know what? Rezen won.
Poison wears off after combat is over, and our guys won a fight they had no business winning, so I let the results stand. Missing footage or not, they earned it.
Rezen? Rezen, say something!
Heh. Guess the kid ain't invincible after all.
Is barely breathing. Need medicine, now!
This is the part where you take me in, hoss.
No, it isn't.
What, you gonna let me go instead?
We're not doing that, either.
What... Put down the knife...
You'll not be ruining any more lives. Not Rezen, not the girl's, not anyone.
You can't do this... Please, spare me...
...before the fight.
This actually happens in the game. After the fight is over, dude begs for mercy and Dente straight up ices him. We also get some P-Frog meat. I was really excited, but...
The poison cooks out, and the taste is bland. He's as disappointing dead as he was alive.
That's messed up, Dente.
And I'm sure it's exactly what you expected.
Hell yes it's what I expected. I'm just sad I didn't get to him first.
Rezen coming back. Eyes open.
Hey, kid. Still with us?
Did... Did I do okay?
Honey, you beat him all by yourself.
That's good. I don't think I'm going to make it, Elly. Just leave me here.
Negative, soldier. We don't leave anyone behind.
With only 3 HP left, we shuffle Rezen to the back and let Elly take over. It does prove the party order matters, since monsters focus mostly on Elly afterwards. This gets us all the way back to Slime Town, where we heal up. We won a tough boss fight on the first try, no one dies, and everything's okay. Only one thing left to do...
And it's not just me you've helped, it's the entire town. For years, we paid tribute to that monster. We're free.
Aw, it's nothing. Plus I have a really cool scar now!
Is trophy of victor! Trog see?
That would be really inappropriate.
A short hike to the castle later...
Note the king's lady-friend is now with him when we visit.
My friends, you've done me a service I'll not soon forget. You are welcome in my castle any time.
...but I must risk discourtesy by asking for our reward.
Of course! I made a promise, and I intend to keep it. What is it you desire?
Tell me you did not just ask King Armor for his armor.
Indeed I did.
The balls on you.
It is yours.
I see by your expression, Dente, that you already know.
Precisely. The armor was not always in the possession of the royal family. It was taken.
Taken? From where?
Isn't it obvious? The statue.
So all the King gear came from the statue?
I'm afraid so. It was once called the Hero's Armor. When King Sword's family took the sword, my ancestors smuggled the armor out of town for safekeeping. Our line has protected it since.
How does he still have armor on if he gave it to us?
Has extra suit of armor under armor. King prepared.
The armor has magical powers. It protected me, and it will protect you. Go now. Reunite the Hero's garb.
Sir! You can count on us.
Looks like we got ourselves a quest, troop. Let's go get that gear!
Trog is ready! But where keep armor in meantime?
I have an idea.
Let's see some big dumb frog try to poison me now!
Next time: Of Swords and Shields!