Part 45: The End of an AgeChapter 45: The End of an Age
Last time, we slogged through a large array of bosses and cheap monsters to reach the point just before the Statues.
Yes, we've still got to fight them. Did you think they were done with the bosses?
Music: Last Dungeon
Before we get too far ahead of ourselves, Group 3 needs to double back and hit this button, opening the way for the other groups.
Sure enough, the first Statue's just a short ways from the door. Group 3 will be facing the lower-right statue, named Poltergeist.
Meanwhile, Group 1 will be facing...wait a minute...
(Insert about 15 minutes of me quickly redoing the dungeon, sans bosses, in order to disguise the fact that I put Strago in the one group that cannot possibly face this boss due to the way that prior room was laid out)
As I was saying, Group 2 will be facing the lower-left statue, named Doom.
Finally, Group 1 will face off with the topmost member of the Warring Triad, named Goddess. Let's get this started.
Music: The Fierce Battle
In addition to knowing Bolt 3 and Flash Rain, Goddess loves to spam Charm spells, and she knows both variants, the one that makes allies attack each other, and the one that makes allies protect her from physical attacks. Even worse, the latter is her regular counterattack. Fortunately, they don't block spells, just physical attacks, but that still makes Locke mostly ineffective.
To further complicate matters, Goddess has a special skill known as Overcast that she uses after being hit eight times. The spell places a timer on everyone, and when it expires, they turn into Zombies, so if you don't have the proper protection, this battle can turn into a considerable mess.
Meanwhile, Doom knows all of the Ice-related spells, including Northern Cross, which freezes party members in place.
Somehow, setting a frozen person on fire seems to me to be the opposite of helpful, but what do I know about treating frostbite?
The reason why we brought Strago to this fight was because of this ability, known as Force Field.
Lore-Force Field: Renders a random element completely ineffectual on all enemies and allies. If it's Poison (it's always Poison), then Poison, Bio, and so on do nothing to anyone. Naturally, non-elemental things, like Ultima for instance, are completely unaffected, so it's only beneficial to use it every fight that we get in from here on out, all two of them.
Once Doom's down halfway, he'll switch things up a little. For starters, he's now got Reflect, Haste and Image status, making most attacks completely miss him or, worse, bounce back at the party. Dispel's pretty nice at this point, as it'll take away his new buffs in one fell swoop.
More to the point, he'll start targeting party members and giving them a taste of Demon Rage!
Poltergeist is a bit less complicated than the other two, preferring instead to just hit everyone real good, though he does use higher-end spells like Flare Star on occasion too. Physical attacks aren't going to be much good against him, so magic's the way to go, except he absorbs Wind, so Gau can't use his standard magic-based combo. Pity, that.
His main gimmick is that he'll cast Stop on someone and then hit all Stopped party members with Blaster for an instant kill. If it's remedied before that happens, the character doesn't get blasted.
Poltergeist also has a gimmick for when he's hit enough times, by the way. In his case, he nukes everybody with Wave Cannon. Much less sophisticated, but no less efficient.
For defeating the Warring Triad, you get the Aura Lance, Sky Render, and Excalibur, good weapons for Edgar, Cyan, and anyone who can use a sword. No Magic Evasion on any of those though, so the Illumina is still better.
Kefka drained the Statues' power, the source of Magic...?
Translation: We need to beat up Kefka too if we want this to end. Not like we weren't going to do that anyway, but at least we have more of a motivation to do so now.
One last button press, and now it's time to confront the big man himself.
Music: Tower of Fanatics
: I knew you'd make it here, so I've prepared some suitable entertainment for you!
"How long are you going to let the destruction continue?"
: I've tapped into the ultimate power. Observe...! Such magnificent power! You are like insects to me!
"People will keep rebuilding the things you take from them!"
: Then I'll destroy those too. Why do people rebuild things they know are going to be destroyed? Why do people cling to life when they know they can't live forever? Think how meaningless each of your lives is!
: It's the day-to-day concerns, the personal victories, and the celebration of life... and love! It's enough if people are able to experience the joy that each day can bring!
: And have you found your "joy" in this nearly dead world of ours?
: Yes! I know what love is...!
: And I have learned to celebrate life... and the living.
: My family lives on inside of me.
: I know what friendship is... and family...
: It is my dream to build a kingdom in which I can guarantee freedom and dignity.
: I have come to experience anew the love of my brother...
: I've met someone who can accept me for what I am.
: I have a special little Granddaughter!
: And I have a brave grandpa who'll stand by me through it all!
: My friend's airship... and her love!
: You my friends! Me uwaooo all of you!
This is a large reason why I love Kefka. Every other villain would be awestruck or mildly respectful of the group's friendship speech, but he, like the audience, is just sick of it.
Music: Kefka's Theme
: Now, for my next trick, I will make you all... disappear!
"Kefka, you don't know what you're doing! Stop!"
Jeez, your aim is awful. You missed Tzen by a mile.
: I command the greatest power in the universe! You are all helpless before me!
I'm sure the ocean is deeply humbled by your might.
Not content to rant from inside a pyramid that's constantly changing colors, Kefka decides instead to ride a giant hard pointy protrusion of rock.
: I will destroy everything... I will create a monument to non-existence!
: No! I will hunt them down. I will destroy it all! Destroy! Destroy! Destroy!!
: We will not allow you to harm another living thing.
: Hee, hee, hee!! But what fun is destruction if no "precious" lives are lost?
: It's over, Kefka!
The game needs us to place the twelve members we brought in a certain order for a very gimmicky final boss battle.
Make it so.
Music: Dancing Mad, Part 1 (Start to 4:30)
This is not Kefka. As you may recall, Kefka's on the top of a giant monument, so we've got to battle our way up to him in a multi-tiered fight.
By the way, even though their names are not visible, this humanoid-looking thingie is actually three enemies: his Face and his erstwhile companions Short Arm and Long Arm. The arms just hit people, but if Face gets down low enough, he can start petrifying people. That could be bad.
Also, the Arms and the Face can be robbed for Elixirs. Don't ask me! I didn't write this thing!
This is probably unavoidable if you're using the Offering or Ultima, but if the Short and Long Arms die before the Face, the Face will use Quake before dying. This is not pleasant if you're at low health, because...
Every time we beat a tier of this boss fight, we move on up, leaving any dead party members behind, their spaces being filled instead by the next people in line. For that reason, it's a good idea to have everyone healed up before finishing off a tier.
(Skip to 4:30)
The next section has four enemies, from left to right: Magic, Tools, Hit and Tiger. Magic casts a variety of spells including Dispel and Haste, Tools fires missiles and lasers, Hit...hits people (he even has a 10-hit combo for when he dies), and Tiger hits the party with Flare Star and Southern Cross, inflicting Zombie when he's low enough health.
This goes without saying, but Tiger should be the first priority, followed by Magic or Tools. Hit is relatively low-key compared to those three clowns.
By the way, this group only has Elixirs as well. The loot's been pretty lame thus far, but that's about to change.
Music: Dancing Mad, Part 2
Here's where things really get interesting. There are two characters here: Girl and Sleep, and they support one another in a very fascinating way.
This is Merton, the Fire-based spell that hits the entire party. Sleep will use this to heal Girl, who absorbs Fire damage, and she in turn will cast Pearl Wind to keep Sleep's health up. Girl should be the highest priority in this fight, as she'll cast Life 2 on Sleep if we take him out first.
There are some very interesting weapons to steal off of this pair, by the way. While another Atma Weapon isn't too far out of the ordinary...
I was under the impression that Ragnarok was the only Esper of its kind. Oh well, can't object to having two more objects of murder.
By the way, you remember how I said that Fenrir's effect was worthless? Well...
Sleep has a special power called Calmness that puts people to sleep or, if his target is already asleep, kills the target instantly. When Sleep dies, he'll do that twice, guaranteeing that someone is going to die right before the last final battle, potentially knocking one of your best characters out of the running at a crucial moment.
However, if a character has Image on, Calmness will miss every time, rendering this cheap shot impotent. Image is going to be handy against this next guy anyway, because...
(Skip to 3:22 for the awesome final battle song)
The clown is up next, and he's undergone a bit of a transformation.
: Where'd they come from? And where are they headed? These things... I am going to destroy!
Just to show that he's not screwing around, Kefka will start the battle with Fallen One, and shortly thereafter follow up with Fire 3, Ice 3 or Bolt 3, so heal up fast.
In addition, Kefka has his own physical known as Havoc Wing, and boy does that hurt.
He also has Train, a hilarious mistranslation of Trine, that silences and Blinds every member of the team. Blindness isn't an issue, of course, but being Mute is not good.
And if you were asking to yourself, "What about overpowered single-target techniques?" then Kefka has you covered with Hyperdrive, a magical technique that cuts right through defense. There's something for everyone in this fight!
Even a full-party debuff in the form of the ludicrously named Revenger.
And last, but certainly not least, if you let the battle go on for too long, Kefka's laughing face appears below his hand and the entire battlefield starts shaking. And then...
He casts Goner, a spell with ridiculous power. There's only one problem with it, though.
You see, while Goner is, on paper, much more powerful than Ultima, the difference between them is that Ultima completely ignores magic defense. Goner doesn't, and so it's actually a little weaker.
But don't fret, after a certain point, Kefka will start countering with Ultima as well. It's actually to your benefit to wait until Kefka starts casting Goner again, because he'll stop counterattacking while he's in his casting state.
Kefka has 62,000 HP, and if you don't wear it down fast, this fight gets very complicated. Overall, if you factor in the climb to the top as well, I feel like it's one of the more entertaining final battles in the series.
: Come on, everybody! We have to work together!
"The Magicite... Magic is disappearing from this world..."
Just like they said, the Magicite are beginning to shatter one by one.
: The Espers... They no longer exist...
: You mean Terra, too?
Next Time: We credit.