The Let's Play Archive

Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift

by Solumin

Part 52: Magick Airship Ride

Update 52: Magick Airship Ride

In This Update:
- Ecological consequences!
- Airship ghosts!
- Exploitation of student labor!


Hey, remember back in Update 43 and 44 where we voted to do the Ecology quests but I messed up and instead we did the Witch of the Fens quests?

Time to finally do some Ecology! This quest has actually been sitting complete this whole time, because the second quest was the one that was blocked.

Anyway, today we're learning about the ecology of the Tramdine Fens! Namely that there's just way too many antlions.

Fortunately, Clan Sawyer is here to help with the fieldwork. That's Lian as a Gladiator on the right.

: If we don't stop them now, they'll just keep multiplying.

This is a pretty straightforward mission.

We outspeed the antlions, so we all move forward. Zoe uses Geomancy to attack one of the bugs, and Talf stays back to charge his MP.

The antlions all move forward to meet us. One of them attacks Adelle for barely any damage, though she doesn't get to retaliate because of the law.


But no, I don't like using Ultima. The antlions are weak to Air-element damage, as Lian gladly demonstrates.

With a single spell, Talf knocks them about and kills one.

The battle proceeds quite quickly thanks to that!

Though as usual there are traps to trip us up.

Montblanc kills two bugs with one blast!

And, finally, Vaan takes down the last antlion.

I'm sure slaughtering culling a significant part of the antlion population won't have any kind of detrimental effect on the Tramdine Fens ecosystem!


Oh dear. Without the antlions to stop them, cockatrices have taken over Tramdine Fens!

Who could possibly have seen this coming?

Oof, that's a law and a half.

Due to the law, I've brought a team of ranged damage experts.

: So we're getting rid of the cockatrices because they graze on the grasses? Well, whatever makes him happy...

Just like last time, we're quite a bit faster, and we spend our turns moving forward.

The cockatrices also move forward, but they also take the time to buff each other.

Cockatrices are weak to water, which Talf is quite happy to throw around. This is also why Penelo and Jalia are Elementalists.

Lenolia is masquerading as a Sniper, because I want to unlock Assassin for her. Sadly, this means she can't wear her usual Holy-absorbing armor.

Doesn't matter, these enemies aren't dangerous enough to avoid using Summons. She takes out two of the cockatrices.

Sliprain is the Elementalist's Water spell, and it's actually quite pretty. It can inflict Slow, though in this case it just kills the target.

The match takes long enough for Talf to get a third turn, letting him drop another Deluge.

Imino finishes off the straggler.

I'm sure sla-- wait I already said that bit.

With the cockatrices gone, the antlions will be able to multiply again. What happens then?

Well, we get hired to thin their numbers, of course. These two quests are infinitely repeatable, though that's more for flavor than anything else.

At least the rewards are pretty good.

An important lesson: intervening in an ecosystem must be extensively researched, well planned, and carefully executed -- and even then there will be unforeseen consequences.


Up next on the Clan Sawyer Continuing Education program: Airships!

First, we'll learn about Airship security.

: You've come to look into the matter of the ghosts? The dock for the ship you'll be boarding is just through the gate there on the left. If you -do- find any ghosts, dispose of them at once.

That's right, we get to board for free because we're students!

We're getting all the fun laws today, aren't we.

You'd think melee fighters would be great for this law, but actually, ranged units are quite good! They can stay near allies and don't need to worry about standing alone after killing a target.

But since there are ghosts, we need to be able to remove gravestones. Henri (White Monk) has Revive, Adelle and Penelo (both White Mages) have Raise, and Hurdy has Requiem. All else fails, Al-Cid has Phoenix Down.

: So the rumors were true.

These are some very angry and articulate ghosts.

: Their search for vengeance binds them here. Only true death will free them.

Also, we're fighting on the deck of an airship mid-flight! How awesome is that?

We spend our first turn moving up, and Al-Cid and Lenolia get some early hits in.

Penelo and Adelle are dependent on MP in order to remove the undead, so Hurdy tops them up.

The Ahrimans do their best to mess us up.

Both Henri and Al-Cid get confused. This is really dangerous, because not only could they hurt us pretty badly, but they'll gladly wander away and break the law.

Penelo is able to clear up Henri's confusion with Refresh.

Sadly, Adelle hasn't learned that spell, and she instead must turn to more percussive means to cure Al-Cid's condition.

It works nicely.

Henri takes down the Bloody Orb, the least threatening of the enemies.

Lenolia once again eschews her bow to summon an Esper instead. The two Ahrimans are at full health, so healing them doesn't matter.

It nearly kills the Deathscythe but misses the other Ghost.

Fortunately, Hurdy is there to finish it off.

Penelo uses Raise to banish it completely. Two down!

We deal some heavy damage for a few turns, until finally Henri is able to kill one Ahriman. He didn't move before attacking, so he can safely find a new position that won't break the law.

An important lesson to be had here.

Ghosts are healed by non-Holy healing spells like Earth Heal.

Hurdy has it covered though.

Adelle follows through with Raise. Finally! This Ghost dodged so many attacks, it was frustrating and boring.

Penelo lands a great Curaga to knock out the last of the undead.

That just leaves the second Ahriman, which Lenolia cleans up handily. No need to banish the last Ghost!

But I want to know who got murdered on the airship.

Hey, free travel across the channel! I really like that the airship quests actually take you to the destination port.

: Word of your swift action to deal with the ghosts has already reached me. Thank you for your discreet and timely help. Should we encounter similar trouble in the future, I hope we can count on you.


The next part of our education is Airship Maintenance 101!

The first step: Identify the problem. In this case, the airship is crawling with Ahrimans and Bloody Orbs.

Step two: Identify possible solutions. Our best bet is to drive away the monsters.

It's important to gather information about the problem. The two Bloody Orbs have "Unscarred," which greatly boosts their stats while they're at full health.

Meet the maintenance team. I've brought a mix of ranged damage and melee fighters.

: We must stop them before they do any more damage.

Now that we have a plan and have gathered information about the problem, it's finally time to perform the maintenance.

Al-Cid and Lenolia immediately target the two Orbs, negating their Unscarred boosts.

The Orbs try to retaliate, but it's not very effective.

Yeah, we might be just a bit too strong for this battle.

Frimelda decides the best kind of kill is overkill and crits one of the Orbs into dust.

The Ahrimans finally wade into the fight, but they don't really do much either.

Tsing punches down the Floating Eye.

You don't need to worry about sustain if you destroy all your enemies before they can attack you! Lenolia takes out two enemies with this single blast.

Alright, this is getting a bit sad now.

Suppose we had better put them out of their misery then.

There's an explanatory note in the pub: the monsters thought the airship was food! That's ambitious, to say the least.


I'm starting to get the feeling we've signed up for the Airship Janitorial track.

: You've come to clean the airship, yes? You can head through that gate to the left to the airship docks. Once you're finished, be aware that you'll be dropped off not here, but at the Fluorgis Aerodrome.

This mission is very simple.

Clean up all the garbage and don't set the ship on fire.

The spots are quite spread out -- make sure you look for all of them before starting the mission!

You'll want your fastest units with the highest mobility, since you're on a timer.

The Move +1 and Move +2 clan privileges are extremely helpful, but I think we can do without them.

: It's pretty obvious no one's cleaned this place for a while now... Right! Let's get on with the cleaning!

There's a particular strategy I like to use for this mission.

All of the points are the on the middle or far end of the ship, except for this one. So send someone to collect it first.

Everyone else moves up. Zoe could have easily reached the point between Vaan and Penelo, but her goal is the point at the far end of the ship.

I guess the way to describe my strategy is, "don't be greedy." Cid can reach the first spot in two turns, which doesn't take long at all. Everyone else is free to head for the more distant points.

Four rounds doesn't sound like a lot, but it's really quite generous if you put even a little thought into your units.

It also helps to equip Ninja Tabi (+2 movement shoes) and Sprint Shoes (+1 movement shoes) of course.

: Thanks to you, our airship is quite clean again. We may well ask for your assistance again in the future!


We find ourselves back in Fluorgis just in time for our next class.

Another seminar on airship maintenance. To be fair, they're quite complex machines.

And I suppose someone to needs to keep these bombs from destroying the entire fleet.

Oh, that's an annoying law, isn't it. I believe knockback from critical hits will make the game think you targeted a distant unit.

We must follow proper safety protocols, which means breaking out the fire safety gear. Sadly, there isn't enough for anyone, but we're in a rush and need to stop the monsters as quickly as possible.

Because of the law, I'm bringing plenty of melee fighters. Montblanc is here as a Time Mage, too.

: Let's stop them here before they do any real damage.

As usual, we greatly outspeed them. We spend the free turn moving up and laying on some buffs.

Mages can still be useful despite the law -- they just have to target themselves or adjacent units.

The enemies are actually really good at ignoring the units who resist fire. Which I guess means the fireproof equipment is working?

I didn't have enough gear to go around, sadly. Oh well, that doesn't stop us from punching them.

Magick users lose some of their utility with the law, but not all of it!

Moogle Knights have a great selection of elemental weapons, so Imino is well prepared for this battle.

Tsing is a little less concerned about that though.

Cid is just happy to be here.

Hurdy immediately gives him another turn, so he obligingly charges into the last group of enemies.

I was slightly confused by this: Bonecrusher is cancelled by Cross-counter, but it doesn't seem to trigger the damage boost.

A few rounds go by where we land some nice attacks but nothing dies. This Marshmallow obligingly kills itself on Vaan's sword.

That's a surprising amount of damage for a mage's melee attack.

And finally, Henri delivers the final blow on the last grenade.

There are plenty of real-life examples of animals thinking man-made vehicles are food. One of my favorite examples is the cookiecutter shark, a disturbing animal known to attempt to take bites out of submarines.


Right, our last class for the semester is--

More cleaning.

: You've come to clean the airship, yes? You can head through that gate to the left to the airship docks. Once you've finished, be aware that you'll be dropped off not here, but at the Moorabella Aerodrome.

This mission is completely identical to Cleaning to Ordalia.

Sure, the law is slightly different, but the spots are in the same spot and you still have an easy time limit.

: It's pretty obvious no one's cleaned this place for a while now...

I'm even using the same team as before.

Seriously, there's nothing new here.

I'm assuming they included this quest for the sake of parallelism: There's two "Grounded" quests, so there should be two "Cleaning" quests.

: Thanks to you, our airship is quite clean again. We may indeed ask for your assistance again in the future!

I guess I can't really complain about basically free AP.


Cid wisely decided to pull the clan out of the Airship Training program once he figured out they were just using the students as cheap janitorial labor.

Thanks for reading! This was a pretty fun update, and I'm glad we finally earned our Ecology credits.

I think it's time we tackled one of the longer quest lines, so vote for one of the following quests:

1. Maybe it's time we tried our hand at Chocobo Ranching.
2. Someone's asking about Lethean Draught. We should investigate that.
3. There's a lot of Bounties available, too.