Part 117: Episode CVII: Our Bloodsport Collection
New Music: Besaid Island (Piano Version)
Time to return to the grind of Celestial Weapons. A bit more literally this time around. Today, our goal will be Auron's Celestial Weapon. This is probably the second easiest one to obtain. It's quite easy to get. Just time consuming. Which isn't saying much with most of these godawful time sinks. But this is the sort of easy one where you can just throw on a podcast and zone out while knocking it out.
The prerequisite for Auron's ultimate weapon is the Rusty Sword we discovered back outside the Cavern of the Stolen Fayth. It's just been stuck in the party's Bag of Holding for just such an occasion as this.
The first stop of this journey is Djose Highroad. Rin's teleporter drops us awkwardly on Dead Crusader Beach, which is a decent jog from both Djose Highroad proper and Mushroom Rock to the south. Mushroom Rock itself has no drop off point. I know it said there was one on the map, but that's just for a bonus location where Rikku's Celestial Weapon is hanging out.
Tidus needs to clamber over the fallen wreckage of the Al Bhed's Tesla Device from back during Operation Mi'ihen to even travel south toward Mushroom Rock. But, we don't need to make the full trip there.
Indeed, a levitating platform just a ways west of the Mi'ihen campaign aftermath is our destination. I'm pretty sure this particular road is unavailable until the party reaches Djose Temple proper, since wounded/dead crusaders are hanging out in front of the boxes prior to that. Plus the party gets railroaded to Mushroom Rock before reaching this point.
Regardless of accessibility, at the top of the semi-hidden area contains a statue of Lord Mi'ihen. Somehow, Tidus just innately knows that this is where he should return the rusted sword he found half a continent away.
Placing the Rusty Sword in front of the metal ass Mi'ihen reveals an emblem on the wall. Tidus seems stoked about it for whatever reason. Guy is easily excitable.
And now if we use the trusty Celestial Mirror on the emblem, it vanishes and the Masamune is obtained.
Tidus clearly cannot be trusted with such a weapon, so Auron immediately appears to take it off his hands. Rikku is here too... for some reason... She literally has nothing to do in this scene. Rikku, your next scene is in lower Mushroom Rock, you dunce.
Auron strikes a few sick poses with his new Masamune. Sorry, it's not a 17-foot katana or the Not-Excalibur this go around. It's kind of ugly, to be honest. Then again, so are most of the Celestial Weapons. Oh well, let's get to powering the thing up, shall we?
The Mars Crest we already obtained way back on the Mi'ihen Old Road. It was at the same place we found the Jecht Sphere last update where the prequel gang were fixin' to battle the Chocobo Eater. Which... stands to reason Team Braska got owned by said Chocobo Eater... Considering that the creature is still around a decade later and that point in the Old Road is where the party ends up if they get knocked off the cliff in the tug of war match against Chocobo Eater.
Nice work, young Auron. Failed to bring up that one, huh?
Now then, about the Mars Sigil. Well, we've already done a bit of the work for this one while knocking out Yuna's Celestial Weapon. Specifically, cleaning up capturing the fiends in The Calm Lands and Mt. Gagazet. The Mars Sigil requires we once more engage with the doldrums of the Monster Arena fiend capturing side quest.
Honestly, I don't see why we don't just kick that feeble old man's ass and take the fucking sigils and prizes he has stashed away. Why are we, the protagonists, engaging in some weird old timer's bloodsport hobby? Remember what happened the last time a bunch of fiends were gathered in a single place? Sin showed up and murdered a few hundred people! Kick that old man in the dick, steal his stuff, and shut down his creepy operation already.
Since such emergent gameplay is not possible in Final Fantasy X, we'll have to stick to the script. That script being completing 10 Conquest challenges in the Monster Arena. Conquest challengers are broken into two groups: Area Conquests which mean we have captured one of every fiend in a specific region. And Species Conquests, which means we have captured one of every fiend palette swapped model in the game.
What this really means is... we pretty much just need to go clean out every other area in the game of fiend captures. We've already done the Calm Lands and Gagazet. So that's two down.
Right here are all the spawns for Besaid Island. Water Flan, Dingo, Condor. It takes all of a minute to knock out Besaid.
For the purposes of Monster Hunting, we're just going to want to roll with Wakka, Auron, and Tidus the entire time. Tidus now has Deathstrike on his Capture weapon, while Wakka has Stonestrike. Both of these will speed things up considerably, since Death/Stone counts as an instant capture. Auron just has Piercing. But Auron can get by just dealing 9999 damage until we break his damage cap after this side quest. Not that any of this matters the first few areas, since the trio will be OHKOing everything in the area.
The next stop is Kilika Woods. This is another quickie. All we need are:
- Killer Bee
- Yellow Element
I'm not going over what these jerks all are again. There was a write-up the first time around. There are literally only 14 random battle enemy models, barring like maybe another half dozen unique one-offs. Take a guess from the name and you're probably right as to which palette swap family it belongs to!
Anyway, Kilika takes only a couple minutes to clear out. Everything can be done the first screen into Kilika Woods. It'll probably take more time running through Kilika Village to get there than to actually clean out the area.
- Mi'ihen Fang
- Floating Eye
- White Element
- Dual Horn
This one took about twenty minutes, just because the random battle spawn was being disagreeable (I never want to see another Mi'ihen, Floating Eye, White Element mob again in my life.) Also Vouivre and Ipiria only spawn on the Old Road. So that's an annoying detour.
It's worth mentioning now that there is some area overlap. The Thunder Flan also spawns on the Old Road, but it is considered a Mushroom Rock region fiend. But capturing here counts just the same as if we'd nabbed it in the proper region. Similarly, Vouivre and Ipiria also spawn in Mushroom Rock as well if you don't wanna take the Old Road detour. I was doing this side quest alongside the Jecht Sphere collection. So whatever...
- Thunder Flan
- Red Element
Here's the Mushroom Rock line-up. That is, everything past the checkpoint where the party met Seymour properly for the first time up until the wreckage of the Al Bhed war machine. This area took ten minutes tops and can all be cleaned out the first screen of Mushroom Rock.
- Bite Bug
- Snow Flan
The Djose Road region is considered to be everything past the Dead Crusader Bridge up to Guadosalam. Everything but Ochu can be gotten the first screen of the highroad proper. Only Ochu is in the forested region around the Moonflow. Another fifteen minute or so task.
- Gold Element
- Iron Giant
- Snow Wolf
- Evil Eye
- Ice Flan
- Blue Element
Macalania is considered both the frozen lake and the magical forest of backtracking and pond boning. So obviously Snow Wolf and Ice Flan only appear in the former. Evil Eye too for some reason. I mean, it does have an ice cold stare.
This one took about twenty minutes as well. Like 18 minutes for the woods portion and two for the frozen part. The latter mob will all spawn together almost immediately.
- Sand Wolf
- Sand Worm
This frikkin' area took like half an hour to finish, despite the small fiend pool to capture. Chiefly, because Rin's airship dumps you at the very beginning of the region and Zuu, Sand Worms, and Cactuar only spawn in the far north. Even then, those three are semi-rare. And really goddamn rare in the Cactuar's case. Sand Worm is still a mountain of HP you cannot cheese with Overdrives or magic, lest the capture be lost by accident.
I hate desert levels.
- Dark Element
Now this motherfucker, the Sunken Cave, as the lazy prick Monster Arena proprietor files it, took me nearly 45 minutes to clean up. Mostly because Ghosts and Tonberries only spawn at the very far northern corners of the dungeon and have an obscenely low spawn rate.
Also couple that with Magic Urn, that gimmicky sonuvabitch, deciding he wanted to play, instead of a worthwhile random battle, literally 16 times. I counted. Yeah, fuck that 30 seconds of running in a circle. Magic Fucking Urn is here and he wants to run the Waste Everyone's Goddamn Time 2016 Marathon! He doesn't even count in the monster hunting since he's literally invincible!
Thankfully, that is all we need for our Monster Arena collection. Zanarkand doesn't have anything for the Monster Arena, as the outdoor area shares a spawn list with the high tier Gagazet creatures. The Zanarkand Dome is all humanoid and robot enemies, both of which also don't count toward any Monster Arena listing. Slightly unethical and/or Yevon taboo. Bloodsport with normal fiends is totally kosher, though!
Omega Ruins also has a pool of monsters, as does ~*~ THE FINAL DUNGEON ~*~ but those are another story for another day.
Let's just go claim our prize.
Hmm... You seem to be worthy of this prize.
And that's it. We've obtained the Mars Sigil. I'll never get that two hours of my life back. Are you entertained you fucking savages?!
This old asshole has a whole mess of prizes and new monsters for the party to
We are going to wrap up this side quest and scratch another off the Celestial Weapon checklist.
Masamune is now imbued with the usual Triple Overdrive and Break Damage Limit. This Celestial Weapon also has First Strike, meaning Auron will go first in all battles and thus negating ambushes if he is in the starter team. And Counterattack is self explanatory. You take a swing at Auron, you'd best not miss... Speaking of which, hitting Auron and failing to kill him is just a mistake now. Check this out.
Auron's Masamune has a unique damage modifier formula. It's actually stronger the less HP he has when landing an attack:
The damage modifier formula is:
(130 - [100 * Auron's current HP ÷ Auron's Max HP]) ÷ 60
So Auron deals half damage at 100% health, full damage at 70% HP, double damage at 10% of HP and at 1 HP he deals 216% damage. Sure, why not? Auron doesn't fear death. He already walked it off the first time!
Only three Celestial Weapons remain. Rikku's is pretty easy, just kind of dumb. Tidus' is probably tied for worst mini-game. And Wakka's is a fucking never-ending nightmare of Blitzball.
Stay tuned for more adventures in Final Fantasy X's Endgame!