Part 114: Episode CIV: Our Entry to Nirvana
Remember when I said we were going to take a break from the Celestial Weapon grind? Well... I lied. The Celestial Weapon grinding of the soul is 90% of Final Fantasy X's end game. Today we're going to tackle a far less intensive target in our weapon hunting shenanigans. This is probably in fact the easiest of the Celestial Weapons to obtain.
And by easy, I of course mean it is only a couple of hours... maybe an hour and a half if you get lucky RNG? You'll see. Today's trip takes us back to The Calm Lands...
New Music: Yuna's Determination (Piano Version)
Today's query is Yuna's Celestial Weapon. Before we begin, I ought to mention that all the events of Baaj Temple and obtaining the aeon from Seymour's Mom is a prerequisite to progressing in this quest. So yes, you'd have to have done all the Destruction Sphere puzzles along the way too. And yet still, this qualifies as the easiest one of the lot. Final Fantasy X Endgame!
Remember the Monster Arena over to the east of the Calm Lands? Yep. We're messing with that grind today. I already picked up a Capture weapon for Tidus, Wakka, Auron, and Rikku. Tidus, Wakka, and Auron will be doing 99% of the heavy lifting here since captured monsters must be defeated with a physical strike with said weapon. So Yuna and Lulu are useless here. Kimahri too. But I mean, that just goes without saying at this point.
For this first neck of the quest, we need to capture one of every creature in the Calm Lands. Which is pretty damn tedious to begin with here. Mostly because the Calm Lands is actually split into four pools of enemy mobs. With that lousy one with the bug, the dog, and the useless robots or else the bug, the mole, and the jello cup being 80% of encounters in any region.
Really, the tiger looking critter, the Coeurl is the only one that spawns solely in the southern half of the map. For general purposes, the northeastern corner or the northwestern edge have just about all we need.
The total list of Calm Land fiend capture targets is:
- Skoll (dog palette swap, infesting the place common)
- Nebiros (bug palette swap, super common)
- Flame Flan (jello scoop, super common)
- Shred (armored mole palette swap, super common)
- Anacondaur (giant snakes, uncommon)
- Ogre (take a guess, uncommon)
- Coeurl (tiger thing, southwest and east only, uncommon)
- Chimera Brain (take a guess as to what it is cousins with, northern half of map only)
- Malboro (rare sonuvabitch in the northeast and northwest corner of map only)
Of that list, this tentacle hentai nightmare of a creature, Malboro, took for goddamn ever to finally spawn in a random battle. Like 25 minutes straight of just grinding away looking for this bad breathed idiot. For reference, I captured every other creature in about fifteen minutes tops. I'm maxed out on captures (there is a limit of 10 fiends per creature you can capture) for everything but Chimera Brains, and Coeurls.
Marlboros are a reoccurring enemy in the Final Fantasy series. Like many series staples, they've been around since Final Fantasy II. Though they did skip III and V. I guess they're not a fan of the Job System. Malboros have the signature attack of Bad Breath, which throws the book at you for status ailments. 100% chance (unless armored up) of Silence, Darkness, and Poison. 80% chance of Confusion. 30% chance of Slow and Berserk. It can right fuck up your day.
This Marlboro was feeling generous and refrained from puking its bad smoker's breath all over the party after being so tardy. Instead, it just shoots loads of yellow goop for 800-1000 HP of damage. How uncouth.
Kimahri can and did learn Bad Breath himself. Ronso don't brush their teeth, you see. Goes against their warriors code. But more importantly, we captured the jerk.
With one of every creature in The Calm Lands caught, we can now return to the old man running the arena and claim a prize.
Music: Brave Advancement
Oops, I almost forgot. Here's a token of my appreciation for your hard work. I don't know if you have what it takes to open it, though.
A chest fades into existence to reward our dirty deed. And as it just so happens, we do indeed have what it takes to unlock its content.
Congratulations, Yuna. You now own the rights to play Smells Like Teen Spirit over Spira's airwaves. Right after you wrap up that whole dreadful Sin business, at least.
If we speak with the old man again, he'll also hook us up with 60 Farplane Winds.
Now this is a handy bit of business if we want to continue capturing monsters. Farplane Wind have no noteworthy function on their own beyond sounding like a Spira fart joke. Used, they'll inflict Death on all enemies. But that would be a waste. These can also used to augment weapons and armor. In this case, 60 Farplane Winds can be used to turn one of our Capture items into one with Deathstrike. Which, as the name suggests, causes the Death status with each weapon strike.
Needless to say, this could make monster capturing go a wee bit quicker. I slapped that sonuvabitch on Tidus' weapon straight away. Cuz we're not quite done with the Monster Arena.
Wanna take a swing at it? The first fight's free!
Now that we've caught the entire roster of fiends in a region, a special boss monster has unlocked in the Monster Arena. As the old timer said, the first fight is free. It's 6000 gil a challenge every other time past this. Full-stop: I'm not fucking doing this!
Here's how all these unfun fights go: Did you max out your characters and have armor that breaks the HP limit? Yes that's a thing. Do you have auto-life because they probably have a bullshit super attack? Do you want to play another 20 hours of Final Fantasy X to do these things? If you answered no to any of these, walk away. These fights are the prologue to the Dark Aeons crappy superbosses. At least they're squirreled away in an option area of no consequence here.
Of course, there is a Trophy/Achievement locked past all this. Cuz fuck you, poor soul who has not let that sad vice go.
The bosses aren't even noteworthy. They're just
We've going to fight this one solely because he's actually quite easy compared to most others. Hits like a truck, as you can see. A second tier Thunder spell does enough damage to nearly kill anyone not named Auron. Remember, at this point in my game I'm about 50ish+ Sphere Levels past normal leveling til the end of Zanarkand.
Chimerageist's fatal flaw in his plan of attack is that all but one of his abilities are elemental magic based. So we can tag in Yuna, have Tidus haste the gang, then have Yuna cast the full compliment of Nul spells for the party.
From there, we'll have Auron use Sentinel, which will have him tank the solitary physical attack Chimerageist will do (hits for 3000-4000 HP.) Yuna can top off Auron's health as needed.
And beyond that? Good work, idiot. You can't hit us! Chimerageist cycles through a spell of each element, before circling back to a physical attack, then starting the cycle gain. So as long as Yuna stays diligent with her Nul spell top-offs and keep Auron healed, the fight is pretty much solved.
Sure, it would be easier to come back here where we have weapons that break the damage cap. But, Auron and Tidus doing 9,999 HP of damage 2-3 times each for every turn the enemy takes isn't that bad of a grind.
For our rewards, we get 8000 AP (sorry guys, you did not contribute to the battle. No hand outs!) a Return Sphere, and a piece of armor that absorbs an element. Meh...
Anyway, that's the Monster Arena super bosses. They just get more bullshit and the rewards not worth it. But... unfortunately we're not quite done with this mess.
If we want to get Yuna's Celestial Weapon powered up, we've got more prerequisite work to do first. The Moon Crest we already picked up way back at Besaid. It was on the beach with Yuna's boat when we departed the island. Indeed, it was the very first crest we got. And the Moon Sigil? Well, we still have work to do to even unlock the ability to try obtaining it.
Our next stop is Mount Gagazet.
New Music: People of the Far North (Piano Version)
First things first, Maechen has found his way to Mt. Gagazet. In fact, this is his final stop Maechen makes in Final Fantasy X. And boy does he have an earful to say. A lot of it kind of important information that really shouldn't be in an optional info dump. Stick this guy in Zanarkand Dome. Nobody would have questioned it.
Go for it.
"There is a legend, you know. Just before the horrible Sin appeared... a terrible war raged between Bevelle and Zanarkand. When the armies of Bevelle attacked Mount Gagazet, they heard a song echoing across the snowy slopes. ''Tis a song from an otherworld,' they said. The soldiers panicked and ran. And then, as if to pursue the retreating armies, Sin appeared! Some time later, scouts from Bevelle braved the mountain. On the other side, they witnessed the ruins that had been Zanarkand. The city destroyed. Not a single soul left standing. Gone! In its place, a multitude of the fayth had gathered on Gagazet. They were singing a song. It's the song we now call the 'Hymn of the Fayth.' And that, as they say, is that. Well... maybe not all of it."
So that we pretty much know. I suppose the Hymn of the Fayth being some ghost song that summoned Sin is kind of new info. I guess that's why Tidus from Dream Zanarkand would have known it and the blitzball prayer becoming the Yevon prayer. Now this next part, pay attention. As it is really important background information presented nowhere else in the game!
How do you know this stuff...?
It is a yes or no question, my friend.
Oh. Yeah. Might as well.
"Rumors flew in Bevelle about Sin's sudden appearance. They said that the people of Zanarkand became the fayth, that they had called Sin. And that the man responsible... was none other than the summoner Yevon, ruler of Zanarkand! Yes, the lord father of Lady Yunalesca. On the eve of Zanarkand's destruction, Lady Yunalesca... had fled to safety with her husband, Zaon. Later, the two used the Final Summoning to defeat Sin. Yet the people of Bevelle still feared Yu Yevon. It was to quell his wrath that they revered him, and first spread his teachings. And so were born the temples of Yevon. I suppose it's possible Yunalesca had planned it that way from the start! A fair trade, she defeats Sin in exchange for her lord father's honor. Of course, there's no proof. No, the facts are lost in the mists of time. And who'd admit Yevon was an enemy of Bevelle? You can bet the temples had a hand in covering that one up! And that, as they say, is that."
If you'll remember, Yu Yevon was the name Yunalesca dropped before croaking. Turns out it is her father, the original ruler of Zanarkand and one who came up with the whole turning the people of Zanarkand into a giant fayth cluster to make a dream version of the city and summon an eternal doom whale thing. Also, the church of Yevon was a big ponzie scheme to revere him after the fact.
This is the only part of the game that directly states who the flying fuck Yu Yevon actually was! Maechen, chilling out at the foot of Mt. Gagazet. You get cryptic bits and obviously, the name to go on if you miss this final Maechen exposition dump. Rest assured, that name will come up again. It's not just some background historic character like frikkin' Gandof or the like. If you just cruised through straight to Bevelle and the final dungeon, you'd get none of this information.
I guess it could be worse. We could be talking to ghost children on a beach...
Seriously, how do you know all this junk, old man?
Oh, I heard it here and there...
"Let me tell you about the Hymn of the Fayth. It was once a Zanarkand song, sung in defiance of Bevelle! Of course, the Yevon clergy of Bevelle forbade it. Then, as these things often go, those who disliked Yevon began to sing it. The Al Bhed, for instance. The Hymn of the Fayth became the symbol of defiance against Yevon. Yevon could do nothing but capitulate. They lifted the ban on the song, and spread a new story. They said the hymn was a song sung to soothe the souls of the dead. And so saying, they took the song and made it scripture. That's why today, the hymn is sung all over Spira. You could say that, though Zanarkand is gone from this world, it lives on in the song.
Are you a ghost? You've got to tell me if you're a ghost.
Aaaah, but look at the time. I've rambled on again. I do love stories, you see. Well, I owe you my gratitude for hearing this old scholar out."
*narrows eyes* Yeah... alright dude. Thanks for the story...
Well that was educational. Had no idea that info dump was there the first time I beat the game normally and did not entertain the thought of any Endgame activities. Much saner times. Anyway, now that we're past Maechen's final history lesson, we can get to the real reason we're here...
We need to capture all the monster in the Mt. Gagazet region as well.
Mt. Gagazet can go by pretty quickly, despite how lengthy this area is overall. I said it during our first trip, but the actual mountain climb region of Gagazet has a very small pool of fiends. And the mobs are broken up into three distinct areas.
The mountain path...
...and the flooded part of the caverns. All three of these areas contain different fiends we'll need to capture that are all dumped into the general Mt. Gagazet region.
The total checklist is as follows:
- Bandersnatch (dog palette swap, mountain path and caverns)
- Ahriman (evil eye palette swap, caverns)
- Dark Flan (gigantic jello scoop, uncommon caverns)
- Grenade (Bomb palette swap, mountain path)
- Grat (eggplant palette swap, mountain path)
- Grendel (armored bulldog palette swap, mountain path and caverns)
- Bashura (Ogre palette swap, mountain path and caverns)
- Mandragora (Lord Ochu palette swap, uncommon caverns)
- Behemoth (I mean there's only the one so far... uncommon in caverns)
- Splasher (piranha fish, flooded caverns)
- Achelous (glowing aquatic thingie palette swap, flooded caverns)
- Maelspike (nasty monster bullshark palette swap, flooded caverns)
Capturing the lot of them only took about a half hour. They all spawn right by the entrance to their perspective parts of the region. No dicking around certain corners of the map this time around, thankfully.
Unless there's something I'm forgetting, I dare say we're done with Mt. Gagazet for good now. I cannot think of another proper reason to freeze our asses off there. Hey, remember how all the Ronso got genocided? That was weird. Glad Kimahri immediately got over it and nobody discussed it in the aftermath.
Music: Brass de Chocobo
In any case, it's back to the Monster Arena to claim or reward. While we're in the area, we should pick up a chocobo. We're going to need it shortly.
Plus, ya know, I just did like nearly two hours of grinding random battles that you pricks just read past in three minutes. You're welcome! Ingrates.
The Monster Arena manager has cooked up another boss? Is he crossbreeding them? How does that even work? You now what...? I don't want to even know.
The creature in question is called Catoblepas. It's a Behemoth with over half a million HP. It has physical attacks that delay and hit for numbers breaking the damage cap. It can cast Flare. On death, it casts Ultima. Did I mention there were three tiers of boss monsters here? One for cleaning out a region, one for getting all of a certain palette swap family. And special ones for stacks of certain fiends, up to and including 10 of every one on the planet.
No thanks, Final Fantasy X! I'm good! Just give me my reward! ...Whatever that is. The item description states: Seems to have some connection with a hidden aeon...
Which brings us to the next leg of this... wow writing this all down, this is still convoluted as all hell, isn't it? This is still the most clear-cut of the lot. We're now heading back into Remiem Temple for a spell.
Remember Belgemine's sidequest we bailed on early because we couldn't yet complete it? That's because we first needed to go pick up the bonus aeons from the Cavern of the Stolen Fayth and Baaj Temple.
And now that we've done that, this quest is basically a cake walk.
Music: Normal Battle
Oh... Ifrit, huh? That's cute. I remember using one of those. Been a good while. Say, check out what I picked up since we last me!
I do like the camera shift showing that Belgemine's Ifrit is well and truly fucked right now. It's a nice touch.
Belgemine, that was just a basic ass normal attack out of Agnes. You wanna just skip this whole song and dance? This is not going to go your way.
For blowing that Ifrit off this plane of existence, we get a nice 30 X-Potions (full heal.) Not too shabby for having Agnes wink once in Ifrit's general direction. Indeed, let's just cut to the chase here through the magic of editing.
Wrecked. 10 Chocobo Feather reward. Can be used to customize a weapon with Initiative. Handy for an upcoming dungeon.
Destroyed. 60 Mega-Potions. Restores 2000 HP to the entire party in battle. Not bad to have on hand.
The main event of the first half of Belgemine's sidequest is taking on her Bahamut. It's significantly more beefy than Isaaru's back in Bevelle and as su
Nah just kidding. Agnes annihilates it in one hit too. I told you, I took Yuna to some strength training classes with Auron. She can bench Kimahri now.
With the defeat of Belgemine's Bahamut, Yuna receives the companion piece to the Blossom Crown, the Flower Scepter! The menu description is exactly the same as the Blossom Crown. No, they could not be bothered to make a physical model or even some spiffy art for either of these absurd sounding key items. This isn't Chrono Cross. Use your imagination.
We're going to go ahead and ignore Belgemine again. Look, she's been waiting patiently here for weeks for Yuna to return. She can wait five more minutes.
Now at the seal in the back of the temple chamber, we can now use the Blossom Crown and Flower Scepter. Or rather, Tidus holds his empty mitt up and the game claims that is what occurred. Regardless, the seal to Remiem Temple's Chamber of Fayth is now broken.
Yuna waltzes in like she owns the place and emerges some undetermined time later with...
...the final aeon of Final Fantasy X. Actually...
...it's technically three aeons, cumulatively known as The Magus Sisters.
Ugh. Alright. ONE LAST TIME!
----- AEON RENAMING: THE MAGUS SISTERS -----
Reference: Cindy (Fat) Sandy (Tall) Mindy (Short)
Let's review the boundaries for naming our new summon...
- Weve only got EIGHT spaces to work with here. So no names over eight spaces!
- Suggestions must be BOLDED to make my life easier. If you don't bold it, I'm not going to acknowledge it. If you change your mind, just edit your original post. Don't make a new one. If I haven't written a tally of popular names, I haven't bothered counting yet. Going I change my vote to this helps nobody if you don't edit your posts!
- No naming it anything vulgar. This is a family friendly LP... except for all the times it is not.
- No using other summons' names. From this game or previous titles. That's just confusing!
- There are THREE names this time. Cindy (the fat one), Sandy (the tall one), and Mindy (the tiny one.) The names you put forth are sticking to this order.
- Try to have some kind of theme. Give me something to work with here. The end vote will be grouped names put forth. We're not mixing and matching anything.
Whatever consensus the thread reaches or whatever I decide because I find it funny will become this trio's new titles. Go for broke...
Video: Episode 104 Highlight Reel (Hey it's the final time Maechen talks. Have some respect for Murdock from The A-Team)
Magus Sisters Official Art