Part 16: Galuf vs. Thought Bubbles
The good news is that these numbers are finally going to go up some, as we have our first proper dungeon since The Ancient Castle.
And what a dungeon it is! This thing is a pain to navigate, with all sorts of branching and invisible paths to confuse you. It's easy to get lost in this place, and the encounters can drag at times if you don't have one of the fifty-or-so "nuke everything" commands available.
StonedMasks have high defense, but aren't that scary. RonkaKnights are just dull.
In case I didn't show it before, here's Wind Slash in action. Very nice damage, and as a plus it's the only Earth command that occurs here, so it's essentially free damage whenever you choose it. Of course, some enemies here will absorb it, but most will take a good hit from it. Geomancers are awesome.
There's also La Mages (...La?) which will spam L2 spells for lowish damage to everyone. Not too scary.
Especially when we have bees on our side.
The path to that chest, and actually to progress in the dungeon, is the lower right section. You can walk wherever there's no grass. The chest itself has Gold Armor, which is too heavy for our mage-heavy group.
You have to walk up to the end, then walk left to get that chest, which is a measly Elixir. I spent far too long trying to get that damn chest.
These guys are a bit of a pain to deal with. First off, these Fan Wizards (weird but at least it makes some sense) will absorb air attacks, so Wind Slash heals them. That's our big damage dealer nullified right away.
Their big spell is White Wind, which heals an amount equal to the caster's current HP. Their max is 1000HP, so the one I didn't touch just nullified all damage I did. They cast it a couple rounds in, so unless you can kill them quickly you want to damage both of them under half health before they cast it.
Sometimes Critters will just do jack shit.
Anyway, there's no reason we can't take advantage of White Wind ourselves for free healing, right?
Oh, did I mention that White Wind is a Blue Mage spell? One of the more useful ones, since it's a rather unique way to heal. Of course, it's useless if Faris is down to single-digits, but in the right circumstances it can be very powerful healing if Faris herself is at high health.
Remember how Missile will knock an enemy down to 1/4 health? That's especially handy for cutting the effectiveness of White Wind, though it also makes them die from a couple of Galuf's punches (at least if he's not in the back row).
Also, here's Sleep because why not.
There's also Lamias, who can be pretty annoying with confusion-inflicting abilities.
There's also Blow Fish.
It does 1000 damage, guaranteed. It's an insta-kill for our characters for a very long time, though you have to control a Lamia to use it. Of course, it's also an easy way to nullify Lamias since they also have less than 1000 HP.
As you may have guessed, this is also a Blue Magic spell, and right now it's our most damaging spell. Its usefulness will wane in time, of course, but right now it's a damn awesome spell.
Hey, Faris can use this!
After a few minutes trying to navigate this place, I stumble onto this trove.
There's another Moonring, so that Reina could stick to the backrow and be awesome (you know, if I wanted to sacrifice Sword Magic). There's also a Power Wrist, an accessory that boosts power (which Galuf appreciates) and an Ancient Sword, which no one really needs since Faris just spams Earth/Blue Magic anyway.
I won't need anything past L3 Summoning for a long time (I don't even have L3 summons yet), so I might as well start getting a few JP in Red Mage for the time being. Don't really need L4 White Magic for the time being.
Oh yeah, there's a pit in the middle here just to mess with you. If you have a Geomancer, you will stop and find it before actually stepping into it. Still, you'll probably still have Up pressed and end up walking into it anyway. This one just knocks you down a level, so it doesn't really do much other than let you know you'll run into these pitfalls in the future, infrequent as they are.
Here's more enemies that are bland other than the crazy color scheme.
Now other jobs can use the Hunter's Aim. Meh.
We're getting close, since we can see Tycoon standing there.
Hyudra absorbs lightning and will do a decently-strong lightning attack on everyone.
Yeah, I don't know either.
And here's White Wind in action.
On the floor where Tycoon is, there's a rather difficult encounter.
This guy's pretty beefy and absorbs lightning AND wind. Ick.
He also has Reflect, so that's a pain.
He also has PoisonBreath, which can really mess you up. Nightingale cures Poison, at least, but the attack itself was powerful enough to take out Faris.
When it dies, it'll use L4 Quarter, which reduces all L4 characters to 1/4 health. Not fatal, but it certainly leaves you weakened.
But hey, more Blue Magic!
Alright, let's get to this thing.
Ughh, that thing is blocking the way!
I prefer the RPGe response, where he just flat-out says, "Shut up!!" I don't know, it just seems like a hilarious reaction to me.
In the GBA version, he refers to the monster as "that bedamned clapperclaw," which is also amusing.
He can change his weakness at will!
Tycoon says this in the other versions, which makes more sense since he'd probably know more about the monster than Galuf.
Archeoavis is a pretty tricky boss. As mentioned, he can change his weakness.
Fortunately, he starts off weak to wind.
Naturally, things start off well. Of course, the weakness goes away after a couple rounds.
He'll use several all-party attacks, though nothing Bartz and Reina can't heal.
Not only will his weakness change, but also his level. For most of the fight, his level is prime, but here I get a nice opening.
L4 Quarter looks nicely, though it turns out it's unnecessary since he's already near-death.
A punch from Galuf sends him down.
Yeah! What life energy! F-from the crystals?
Surprise! Part 2 of the boss fight!
That said, it's easy to cheese this with L5 Death, but I'm trying to stay away from that kinda stuff.
So I do L4 Quarter instead, except that did nothing to him.
He can confuse characters and has stronger attacks, plus he ditches the weakness gimmick. Wind Slash doesn't even work on him anymore.
I didn't notice any difference when I did Guard-Off.
He can also paralyze, which sucks.
Eventually, I just cheese him with Blow Fish to finish him off. Gotta love the sheer variety of ways you can dominate battles.
Well, Tycoon sounds happy enough.
The crystal should be up ahead...
The rest of this update is all plot, and we've got a huge chunk of it coming right now, this being the last crystal and all.
This is bad! Something's controlling him!
Whew. For a minute, I thought everyone was too stupid to see the obvious.
Bartz! Please stop!
Don't ye try it!
SCREEN SHAKE TIME
Hey, it's that girl from Galuf's flashback!
She sends a spark flying into Tycoon. She doesn't know that he's a bad guy, so maybe she just felt like being a jerk to the first person she saw.
And with that, Galuf has conquered his amnesia by throwing a thought balloon away. I'll buy it.
Oh grandpa, I missed you so!
Then the girls wake up and immediately rush to their possessed father.
He's all right. I only used a weak Bolt!
You ARE Salsa! You're alive!!
Pretty touching stuff. Galuf gets his memory back and reunites with his granddaughter, while Tycoon meets his long-lost daughter. All-in-all, a really nice scene.
So, you know, fuck all of that.
(LISTEN TO THIS)
Oh crap! New jobs!
Also bad stuff. But new jobs!
And so we come face-to-face with our villain.
Something to be aware of...X-Death enjoys a good laugh. He's probably the biggest ham in the entire series. Rather than be a complex villain like Golbez, he simply revels in being a villain and skates by on paper-thin development, which isn't a bad thing of course, especially in the context of this game.
Then the dick turns the crystal shards against us. Stop attacking us with our jobs!
Bartz! Are you all right?!
The crystals are gone! Next is your world, Galuf!
Then X-Death uses magic to...fly to another planet? Uh, okay.
Salsa! Reina! and Bartz! Your work is unfinished. You must not let the world end like this...raise your swords and fight!
He refers to Galuf and Krile as warriors of a different dimension/world in the other versions, though he just snubs them here.
Light of Earth! Gather here and give me your essences!
NO! Stay back!
And thus, Tycoon sacrifices his life so we can gain new jobs. Truly a great man to the end.
Don't ye die!
Salsa...I never was there for you... Reina...Salsa...combine...your powers... Bartz...please take...care of them...
Don't leave us!!!
Time for another screenshake!
It's simpler to just say the screen's shaking in text than to show it in a biggish GIF.
The ruins are falling apart...?!
Everyone OUT! To the airship!
All automated, of course, but not a shabby way to end a nice dungeon run.
Father is...gone, isn't he?
We've gotta move now!
X-Death is an evil Black Mage from our planet... who came here 30 years ago to destroy the earth's crystals...Three other Dawn warriors and I used our power to trap him here. We thought everything was settled...
But I was too late...he's already freed himself and returned to my world...
It's because we overused the crystals' powers, isn't it?
If only we'd taken him back with us, like he begged.
It's funny for how out-of-place it is.
We have to seal up X-Death. Luckily, Krile's meteor can still be used once more.
No! This is the last meteorite. Even if you went, you could never return!!
And so Galuf and Krile return to their home planet, leaving us down to three characters and no real mission. It's pretty much over for us. Might as well wait for the world to die, I guess.
Or, you know, we can land the airship first and then progress the plot.
Galuf is fighting X-Death in a distant world...
..'n' there's our papa's revenge!
Yes! And then...
How do we do that?
Thar's nary enough power in the meteor t' warp again...
Meteors... Maybe Cid knows something!
So they've known the old man for a few weeks now, and in that time they became so fond of him that they're willing to leave their old world forever to help him out. What this game doesn't have in plot, it more than makes up for in its characters. That's the beauty of these games with small parties, having the characters really form bonds with each other. You don't really see that in most of the other games in the series.
But who gives a shit about that, NEW JOBS. Our final four jobs are here!
Lancers are another big physical job. Their gimmick is, of course, Jumping to do extra damage and to evade combat for a brief time. They also get an attack that lets them absorb HP and MP from an enemy, so it makes a nice supplement for mages (though the ability's not that great). They're actually pretty bland overall, but it's still a FF staple and it'll still pull its weight.
Vigor +18, Speed +5, Stamina +15, Magic -12
Samurai's an interesting class, featuring the first appearance of series staple Gil Toss (translated here as $toss). They wield katanas and specialize in evasion with a few gimmicky abilities. Their actual abilities aren't exciting besides $toss, but they're strong enough and katanas are nice enough that they're a pretty sweet job to have.
Vigor +19, Speed +2, Stamina +19, Magic -12
Ah, Chemist...They increase the benefits of items, and can use the Drink command to consume stat-boosting drinks during battle. They also get an ability called Mix, which will fucking cleave the god damn game in half due to how fucking overpowered it can be. There's ton of combinations you can make with Mix, and there are a few that will completely break enemy's scripting and trivialize a game in a way no other job really can. A bit of a hassle, maybe, but overall it can really be worth the time investment these guys take.
Vigor +2, Speed +3, Stamina +6, Magic -4
Our final job is Dancer. This is the only class that can equip Ribbons, which is good to note. Other than that, Dancer's big gimmick is to Dance, which gives one of four random effects, the most desirable usually being Sword Dance which deals 4x regular damage. They're gimmicky and honestly not that useful, but it's not a bad job to play around with.
Vigor +5, Speed +5, Stamina -10, Magic -5