Part 20: Crud! What a mess!
Last time on LPFFVIA, I fucked up the quicktime event.
I did better this time. I'm honestly not sure how they expect you to do this on a GBA but it means that Meryl actually doesn't fall to her death here and the rest of them are simply unconscious. Which is good because you can't have death and destruction in a SNES RPG.
...maybe then you'll believe me.
Meryl! Wh-what are you doing!? Stop!!!
So Meryl casts a teleport spell she never told us she could use while she was in my party because she's a dick. And they all fly off...
...taking with them all the equipment Meryl was wearing.
Or they would have if I hadn't stripped her naked as I entered the room.
(That line sounds wrong even in context.)
Indy wakes up just in time to realize what a COLOSSAL MORON he is...
"Just so you know, you're a colossal moron."
"A total blockhead."
"An utter dunce."
"A frickin' fool."
"A complete clod."
"A gormless fuckwit."
"An insipid dolt."
"A niggardly nitwit."
"And a royal pain in the arse."
Cid is more worried about the state of the facility.
The blast reversed the energy flow in the capsules! We need to get out of here!
Quick! Over here!
He runs off to the right and because there's nothing more for us here, we follow.
Now he wonders if draining magic from living beings and using them to conquer the world is the right thing to do!
There's no excuse for it, no matter how much Kefka may have threatened me...
Draining the life energy from espers just to make people stronger...
You've helped me come to a decision.
I'm going to talk to the emperor and make him realize how foolish this whole war is!
...good luck with that, I guess, but if anyone can do it, it's the intrepid superhero, Condoman.
The game dumps us here, facing the save spot. Almost as if it wants to tell us something...
Sod it, I want to talk to Cid some more.
I've known her ever since she was a child. I doted on her as if she were my own daughter.
But I also forced her to become a Magitek knight...
If I ever get to see her again, I want to apologize... for all of my mistakes...
Before we get too sappy, we're interrupted by the trademark stupid horse laugh.
...and tosses the party in a mine cart.
AUDIO: Save Them!
The rest of this sequence is eye-blisteringly ugly but plays some pretty kickass music.
It also puts us up against some weird enemies, but...
...the fights basically all go like this. Matt can one-shot everything we encounter here on his first turn.
The big ones take even more damage!
The path splits occasionally, but now the game has given up all pretence of letting us control it and we can't do anything more than just enjoy the ride.
After a few minutes, the boss shows up.
This one is composed of three parts and you can kill off the arms, but they regrow after a while. The important part is stealing...
...well, at least if you think you're ever going to use MrThou again.
The arms can be pickpocketed (somehow) for ethers but they are rare steals and I still haven't used any of the ones I've picked up so far, so... forget it!
And then we finally see the light once more. Onward! For blood and glory!
...blood and glory hurts.
There are random battles! Too insignificant to screencap, but this was a nice surprise. I'm trading out Ramuh for one of our shiny new espers.
Here's the next thing that matters.
We can talk about it later. Let's get out of here!
And so they do.
...much as I may prefer the new translation, I do like this line.
Kefka runs inside and fiddles with some controls-
-and a weird contraption rises over the building.
Meanwhile, on the flyboat...
That probably would've been a good idea...
...But it seems we're a bit too late. Here they come!
wait what is coming
how can they possibly catch us
"They are indeed and I want them"
AUDIO: The Blackjack
Aeris? Who's that?
I'll explain everything on the way... Aeris... The espers... The Returners...
Did they ever say what it was they were returning to?
Fortunately, Indy's explanation takes place off screen while the flyboat makes its way back...
...towards Zozo, god damn it all.
The magicite begins to glow...
...and so does Aeris.
I remember now... I was raised in the esper world...
It looks... pretty normal.
Except now we're this dude. That's not normal.
Where have I heard that name before...
We're given a choice of leaving her here or taking her with us, and naturally there's no choice at all.
Is that so...
...let's go bother her!
Young Woman: You're... an esper? What's this pendant around your neck?
Good to see she has her priorities right.
Maduin: ...I'll give it to you. A charm from the esper world!
Hooboy, awkward JRPG romance!
Young Woman: The esper world... So, that is where I ended up...
Maduin: Everyone is at a loss as to how you, a human, could have made it into our world...
Young Woman: You're the one who saved me, right?
So I wandered out into the storm, and before I knew it, I was here...
No longer a reference to a washed-up pop singer.
Good thing, too.
Maduin: They say humans and espers... can't coexist.
Madeline: So... you don't want me here, right?
Maduin: No, I'm just... not sure.
Can't help but feel like this whole segment may have lost something in the translation.
Maduin: All right... Someone can show you the way back.
The guy is watching us and facepalming so hard at that conversation.
Fade to black, and Maduin wakes up COLD AND ALONE.
This world is actually larger than it needs to be for this scene, but all the NPCs are just like UUH HUMANS so we're not talking to them.
Maduin is the strong and silent type so...
...he just pushes past without a word.
Madeline: But... Humans and espers can't be together...
(Or something vaguely symbolic thereof. Don't expect too much, it's a goddamn SNES game.)
So anyway Maduin and Madeline fly off with sparks trailing behind them
and the sparks come together
Babies do not work that way.
Madeline: What is it?
Maduin: "Aeris." It's beautiful, isn't it?
This is the worst scene ever. It's like the distilled essence of horrible jrpg love stories.
But at least we're spared the two of them standing on a cliff shouting HA HA HA.
The nexus between our worlds has opened again! This storm is just like the one two years ago...
This is no good! Retreat to the elder's house!
The remaining espers run off, but the camera remains behind to see...
...the emperor himself making his entrance.
After all that time spent decoding the secrets of those ancient texts...
Now it's time to reap the rewards!
Grab them! Riches to any man who captures an esper! GO!
Not for long, as I'm sure we have all figured out.
Maduin: You mean... the magic barrier?
Elder: I'll create a tempest to sweep all the invaders out of our realm, then I'll seal the gate.
Even among espers, the power to create a magical seal is limited to a single bloodline. I am the last of that line...
Maduin: But at your age...
Elder: ...I may not survive. And without me, you will never again be able to open the gate.
Madeline: The other world holds nothing for me.
Elder: Then it is decided. We have no other choice.
Esper: She could have led them here for all we know!
Esper: No! She's one of them! It'll only be a matter of time before she decides she wants our power, too!
Madeline heard them and decides that fuck this place and she's taking her baby too. I don't blame her.
Maduin is the only one who cares.
Maduin: Madeline, she...!
...that line is so Japan.
Elder: Oh, no... But it's already too late! I've begun activating the seal. You won't be able to return!
Maduin: I don't care!
So they are
Gestahl fights, but in the end he, too, is blown away.
Maduin. I know!
Madeline: ...Thank you.
Maduin: Will you come back home with me?
Madeline: Yes, of course...
Maduin starts dragging her back, but...
...she loses her grip on baby Aeris!
Madeline goes after her.
And Maduin goes after her.
Madeline: Leave... my daughter... alone...
Your daughter? Hmm... Then she must be half human and half... How fascinating!
It looks like my dreams of building an empire may come true sooner than I'd ever imagined!
...dude looks like 70 already; how much longer was he expecting to be at it?
He's going to punch the baby, too, as soon as he's had his daily puppy sandwich.
This world will be mine to rule! Ha-ha-ha...
The gate shuts with a boom.
While the others were distracted by the story, Aeris found some new clothes to wear.
Indy doesn't just have his dead girlfriend in his basement, he has Aeris' dead dad in his pocket.
This is going to be awkward, isn't it...?
I'm the daughter of an esper and a human... That's why I have these abilities...
But I should be okay now. I can control this power, as long as I only use it in short bursts.
"I mean. It would be totally game-breaking otherwise."
"What's wrong with game-breaking?"
Those espers in the research facility must've been the ones they grabbed that day.
And Meryl's power... came at the expense of one of them.
Look at this pathetic wreck of a man, trying to make himself feel better about that horrible thing he did.
The Empire won't get away with this! I'll hit that emperor with a blitz or two...
How are things in Narshe?
Hmm... Maybe we should head back and see.
The airship's ready to go!
Into a new and brighter tomorrow, with a new and brighter Aeris who does not angst as much!
...but you'll have to wait to find out just how much brighter she is.