The Let's Play Archive

Final Fantasy X

by The Dark Id

Part 40: Episode XXXIV: Begin My Road Trip

New Music: Mi’ihen Highway

At long last we are freed from the slog of Luca. A slog certainly not amplified by a forced month break of the LP. Tidus stretches for the umpteenth time to prepare for the next leg of the journey. The guy stretches more than a member of the Armstrong family.

But in this case, he’ll probably need it since it is time to begin the main plot of Final Fantasy X: A road trip! Cross-country continent! On foot! Perhaps Wakka would like to return to Luca briefly to purchase something besides sandals for footwear. And Lulu something that isn’t utterly idiotically impractical in every single facet an outfit can aspire toward choice for long distance travel.

Along this long, long road we’ll encounter many NPCs wandering down the trail. None of them have anything remotely interesting to say beyond “man this is a long goddamn road” and “I hope my destination hasn’t been razed by a doom whale before I get there” and the like. However, it is worth jabbing with them briefly to exploit Yuna’s celebrity status for free gifts from the peasants.

Another thing worth mentioning is the fact that save points has now been upgraded with teleportation technology which only links to the Luca Stadium for blitzball games and nothing else. I imagine that if we ever do develop teleportation technology, and it doesn’t result in the Combine or demons invading, the teleportation nodes will only link to sporting events, fast food restaurants, and Wal-Mart consumer electronics departments. So this is not too surprising.

That all said, we could get sidetracked participating in the blitzball season. But I’d rather stick my dick in a vise than go back to blitzball at the moment. So let’s continue onward… onward a whole twenty yards before we hit another (optional) cutscene triggered by gabbing with the old timer hanging out near a statue.

“In just a few short years after their founding, their ranks grew throughout Spira. The maesters of Yevon feared an uprising and accused them of rebellion. So Lord Mi'ihen walked along this very road to go face their charges and refute them. He succeeded in winning the maesters' trust, and his legion became an arm of the Yevon clergy. It was then that Yevon gave them the name 'Crusaders,' which they have kept ever since. And the rest is history."
”…Man, how heavy is that hat?”

You know what we haven’t had in a while? And by ‘a while’ I mean ‘an hour of gameplay’? A tutorial, of course!

Normal Battle

"No way! I can take it."

*does dinky damage* "What the...?"

Auron shows us how a man murders wildlife.

"Hmph, I could've done that."

Yeah you could have, Tidus. But not with any of the weapons you’re carrying. The critter Auron just slew has the Armored attribute which greatly protects against physical damage. Auron’s default sword comes equipped with the Piercing ability, which ignores the Armored status and allows him to deal full physical damage. Couple that with the fact that Auron hits like a truck and you’ve got the impressive display of killing aptitude we witnessed. I’ll go over the random battle mobs in this stretch of the game in the next update. For now, let’s press onward…

Mi’ihen Highway

"Some old city?"
"A city most ancient!”

“Compared to Sin, humans are mere mudpuppies!"
“The heck is a ‘mud puppy’?”
“I would think the context of the statement would sufficiently explain the creature’s implied inferiority in the analogy, regardless of your exact knowledge of its origin.”
“…That didn’t explain what it is.”

"A good reply. I am relieved to hear you say that, m'lady summoner.”

“I am on a journey, studying the history of our world, Spira, seeking its stories and secrets... My travels have taken me to many places, and I am troubled by what I have seen. Fragile smiles on people's faces crumbling at the mere mention of Sin. They are counting on you, m'lady. Give them a reason to rejoice once more."
"I will."
”Why do I get the feeling you are going to inexplicably show up everywhere and give long history fluff lessons…?”
*adjusts glasses* “It is not beyond the realm of possibility.”
“…Seriously. How heavy is that hat? I’m getting a headache just looking at it.”

Welp. That’s enough talking to this old timer. Don’t worry, we’ll see him again. Indeed, most of Mi’ihen Highroad’s first half is a great big reoccurring character introduction conga line.

A few yards of walking later…

Speak of the devil…

"Yes, I am Yuna."

”Hey, I’m Cl—“
“I do not recall saying you were permitted any lines. Not after what we saw you doing in that chocobo stable…”
*frown* “Ma’am…”

”…How does that taste, anyway?”
“You are asking me how the six foot tall… chicken tastes?”
“Uhh… yeah? What is that another Yevon taboo I’ve messed up?”
“Is this one in some sort of affirmative action guardian program for the mentally disabled?”
“Yeesh. Fine. Sorry I asked!”

“Do take care, Summoner Yuna, if you are to rent any chocobos."
"Thank you. We will be careful."
"Good. We should get back to our rounds. Farewell."
"Our prayers are with you."

The chocobo knights gallop off…

*fist pumps* “Let’s go get him!”

"It's the right thing to do."
"’It's the right thing to do?’" *laughs quietly*
"What'd I say now?"
"Jecht said that a lot, too.”
“And every time he said it, it meant trouble for Braska and me." *chuckles*

The Prelude

”I don’t know about this…”
“Come on, it’ll be fine! What are you worried about?”
“But I’m married… with children!”
“Yeah ditto. So what? Are you gonna see them anytime soon on this pilgrimage thing?”
“I suppose not.”
“And HOW far did you say the next city was?”
“It is going to be a ways…”
“Right. And we’re all still men here, last I checked. Men got needs! And we’re gonna go ahead and get those needs out of our system tonight so we can focus on this pilgrimage crap fresh tomorrow.”
“You know it’s the right thing to do. C’mon Auron. I know you could use some relief for that stick up your ass.”
“…I suppose it can’t hurt.”
*sigh* “Fine…”
“Hahaha! There it is! Let’s get this party started up in here!”

One hour later…

“…Yevon help us…”
“Okay, serious. NOBODY told me that a ‘Guado Firecrotch’ meant that the chick would literally shoot fireballs outta her business when she got pissed.”
“What did you think would happen?!”
“I THOUGHT I was gonna get a show from a freaky tree elf chick.”
“There was a STRICT no touching policy.”
“Look, I didn’t know there would be reading in a titty club. I don’t know how Spira works! This place is WEIRD! You guys gotta tell me this kinda stuff!”

Mi’ihen Highway

Right then. That’s all the mandatory cutscenes for this first map screen. But there is one more optional encounter tucked away in the northeastern corner of the map.

"You, too, are a summoner?"
"My name is Belgemine. You are...?"
"My name is Yuna."
"Ah, the high summoner's daughter. I've heard much of you. But you are still fresh on the road, are you not?"
"Yes, I am."
"I might have a few things to teach you. Let us see which are stronger. My aeons or yours. A one-on-one match.”

So we are now given the option to throw down with Belgemine in a Pokémon summon battle. I don’t see why we should pass up the chance to have mythical creatures beat the crap out of one another for sport. Why isn’t this a national sport of Spira…?

"Good. Before we begin..."
*casts a heal spell on Yuna* "Your aeons have been healed. You can fight with your full strength. Come."

Normal Battle

Yuna is the only one on the field for this battle. But neither she nor Belgemine actually can beat up one another. Like the invitation suggested, this is an Aeon only brawl.

Belgemine chooses Ifrit.

Unfortunately, the battle engine wasn’t designed to have two of the same Aeon on the field, so McGruff is unavailable. So Kazooie is our only option. Was Flying type any good against Fire? It’s been 13 years since I last played a Pokémon game.

We don’t really have many options with Kazooie. Sonic Wings is a waste of time as Belgemine’s Ifrit is immune to delay attacks. The best bet offensively is to just spam the regular attack or fire off a Blizzard or two to hit Ifrit’s weakness.

The thing is that Ifrit hits pretty respectably and coupled with Kazooie’s mediocre HP total, it’s impossible to win a battle of attrition in trading blows. But that’s okay. This is another tutorial battle.

If we press right on the battle menu a few new options will produce themselves. Dismiss we can ignore. That just calls away the summon and would forfeit the match. Shield casts a protective spell that greatly reduces damage for one turn at the cost of the Overdrive meter not filling at all for that turn. Boost, on the other hand, makes it so our Aeon will take more damage but also fill the Overdrive meter quicker.

Ifrit has a very basic attack pattern it will not deviate from. Every turn it will alternate between a physical attack and a Meteor Strike special attack. The latter of these two hits like a truck. So what we do to win this battle is Shield for the Meteor Strike turn and Boost to tank the physical attack turn.

With a bit of luck and hopefully some whiffed attacks from Ifrit’s crap accuracy coupled with Kazooie’s high Evasion we should be able to get our Aeon’s Overdrive meter full before it falls.

At which point, said Overdrive will utterly ruin Ifrit’s day and win Yuna the summon dance off. You’d think Overkilling Ifrit would net a bundle of AP for Yuna but since this is a gimmick fight and Yuna didn’t technically attack herself, no AP is rewarded. Weak.

Mi’ihen Highway

“Take this. You've earned it."
*Receives Echo Ring* (HP +10% and Silence Ward)
"You show promise. With more training, you could defeat Sin."
"Thank you! But I think you might defeat Sin before I am able to."
"I cannot. Or should I say... I was not able to."
"You mean..."

And on that odd note, Belgemine wanders off with promise of future Aeon throw downs. Looking forward to it, lady.

Welp. The road beckons…

Video: Episode 34 Highlight Reel

Mi’ihen Highroad Entrance Concept Art

Mi’ihen Ruins Concept Art

Mi’ihen Highroad General Concept Art

Lord Mi’ihen’s Concept Art - Fuckin' metal!