Part 41: A pointless waste of timeLoose Ends, Part Pi
Last time, I said that there was no way to figure out which step to stand on to find the secret passageway in the Ancient Castle. Turns out I was wrong.
This fellow in Figaro's library has something interesting to say.
Scholar: I wonder what this means, "...when the queen stands and takes 5 steps..."
Of course, this fellow's line only changes when you've looked at the queen's diary and these fellows in the library generally have nothing interesting to say, so it's still a mystery to me as to why anyone would think to run back through the cave, raise the castle (because you can't access the rest of the castle while it's underground) and run to the library to get advice from the folks there.
Chapter 41: A pointless waste of time
For today, I'm going to be showing off Gau and Cyan's major glitches, and for that, I will need Imp equipment, starting with robbing these things.
The obvious question you're probably asking at this point is why in the world anyone would want equipment that's only useful when a person's in Imp form? And the answer is: no reason really. These things are a pain in the neck to acquire, and they ultimately are outclassed by equipment you get just by acquiring characters.
Anyway, the Titanium is the Imp helmet. I need two of them if I want to also get something else later, and these Tumbleweeds do not want to let go of them. Insert about half an hour of futilely attempting to rob a single one of these.
Our next stop is a forest in vaguely the shape of a dinosaur's head, known to fans either as Dinosaur Forest, the Nightmare Forest, or, alternatively...
That forest with the Meteor-spamming Tyrannosaurs of death. There's also an alternate formation with two of them, and it's a Pincer Attack. Not fun.
The reason why we're here is that we can steal Imp Armor from them, and we pick up the Imp Partisan when they die. We'll need two Imp Armor as well, if we want to get the shield of the set. Splendid, no?
Now it's off to the coliseum, where we have to bet an Imp Armor to face this big guy. There's not too much of a threat from this guy given Celes' Magic Block % right now, unless she decides to do Runic about a dozen times.
Oh wait, she did. I hope you guys don't mind that I didn't show this fight off.
The Brachosaur is the other type of monster you can find in the Dinosaur Forest, and it hits like a truck. Good thing for Celes' defense, because...
Not only did Celes cast Safe on herself at one point, but she also did Cure (when she needed Cure 2), Antdot (when she wasn't poisoned), another two dozen Runics, and so forth.
Have I mentioned that I hate the arena AI? Because I hate the arena AI.
Anyway, the Cat Hood is a decent piece of equipment for Relm, but I've got other plans for it.
All things considered, I got lucky on this fight. The Hoover did a quake attack that put Locke at critical right before Locke attacked four times with the Valiant Knife.
It was a fairly close match, but I got the Merit Award. What does the Merit Award do?
Merit Award: Allows the wearer to equip weapons and armor normally inaccessible to him or her, within certain limitations, such as female-specific armor not being equippable by men. Sounds fairly harmless, right?
Well, they made a little oversight when it comes to Gau. Normally, he's not supposed to be able to equip weapons, presumably because of the different weapon effects associated with his Rages, but more importantly, recall that his Stray Cat Rage has an ability that can do 4x damage.
Gau's a bit underleveled with me, but he can still do that amount of damage with a Wind Slash that's four times the normal power, and with the Offering equipped, he has a chance of doing that four times in a turn. This configuration of the Tempest sword, the Merit Award and the Offering is known as Wind God Gau, and so long as you don't mind sacrificing Locke's damage capabilities for it, it can be quite an effective combination.
This next one is a little more complicated, and it involves mucking about with Cyan's level 2 Swdtech: Retort. For this move, Cyan places a special temporary status on himself, designed to trigger a counterattack when he's hit with a physical attack, and then go away.
However, if Cyan dies from a physical attack and is brought back to life, only the first part of the trigger will have been activated, so the instant anyone attacks anybody, not even him, he'll immediately do his counterattack against a random enemy, but the status won't go away. Once someone else attacks again, he'll still counterattack, even though he should only do it once.
But wait, it gets better.
Normally, if Cyan has the special Retort status, being turned into an Imp just means that he'll attack normally when struck instead of doing a special attack. However, in his dead and revived state, remember that he interprets any normal attack against anybody as an indication that he needs to attack as well.
See where I'm going with this?
Cyan the Imp will just keep countering his own counters, attacking over and over and over, until the last enemy falls.
Even when Gau shows up, Cyan will just hit him over and over until Gau dies. Did you know that it's possible to kill Gau when he returns? I certainly didn't. Oh, but it's even better than that.
While Cyan's in this state, it's even possible to switch out his weapon mid-pummeling. I tried replicating the same trick using an Offering and a Black Belt, but it didn't work there tragically.
Anyway, while we're on the subject of Gau, there's a scene that I've been putting off for quite a while, and since we've got some free time...
Aged Man: Quick! Fix that chair! Then you can use it to reach the roof.
He's still as senile as ever, but since we've got Gau and Sabin together on this, something painful happens.
: Come on, Gau. It's true, right?
: Yes. This is definitely your father.
: ......??? ...Gau's...father?! Oooogauooooo!
: Just a minute... We can't just go there with you looking like this. I know! Let's go to Jidoor and give you a make-over!
So it begins...
Music: Johnny C Bad
: No, Gau! Don't eat with your fingers!
: Don't say "Yaoooo" when you mean "Yes!"
: Hm...oh well...
: Which is it gonna be? Oh! This is nice...but...Do you think it becomes Gau?
: What a jaunty hat!
: Not at...
: Wait a minute! Where's the hat?
I'm going to guess that Cyan had the hat snatched away by somebody, but it's really hard to tell.
Oh, but if you thought that these little scenes were the height of comedy, it only gets more outrageously hysterical from here.
: Phew! Completely lacking in fashion... Excuse me, sir. Could you order some clothes like the ones I'm wearing?
"Impossible! Setzer! How dare you think of sticking him in that kinda getup?!"
Whoever said this line says something even more scathing in the GBA version, but I'd rather hurry this scene along.
: I think that's overdoing it just a bit...He should have a bandana on his head!
Now who's overdoing it?
: What's so great about a bandana? Most of the time I see 'em tied around dogs at the beach!
: HEY! What do you mean by that?
Fade to black, accompanied by sounds of intense pummeling. Apparently Locke is sensitive about more than just his job title.
Of course, Sabin hasn't made any effort whatsoever to look more respectable himself, but at least Edgar and Locke look semi-legit.
Music: Gau's Theme
: Sir...You...had a son, right? You with me?
Aged Man: Son?
: Right! The truth is...he's alive! Come here, Gau!
Aged Man: What is this!? What's with this "son" business? I never had a son!
Aged Man: In it, a demon-child was born! I grabbed the creature, and rushed off to the Veldt with it... It was crying like crazy when I arrived on the Veldt.
: But, Sir...!
Aged Man: I left the child there... And without looking back, I turned and started to run.
: I'm trying to tell you...
Aged Man: Suddenly the crying stopped. I turned around and saw a frightful monster... Hideous! Still gives me the shakes.
: I give up...
Aged Man: But you, young man, your parents must be proud of you! I still have dreams of that demon child... Frightening...
This scene is actually kind of sad. Even with his own dad calling him a demon, Gau's still coming to his defense.
You don't even get anything from this scene, and Gau's part in the ending doesn't change either. All this is for is to give Gau and the rest of the party a little extra time to shine, and I don't mind that. It's the little things, I suppose.
Next Time: We help Cyan deal with his innermost angst by kicking it in the teeth