Part 41: Episode XXXV: Rest My Feet
Not much to say about the Mi’ihen Highroad between cutscenes. It’s basically just a leisurely walk to our next destination. That said, we will get into more than a few random battles along the road and a number of new species have cropped up in this region. So let’s take a quick look at the local mobs…
These critters, the Raldo, we already saw back during the “Auron ruins armored dudes’ shit” tutorial. These guys don’t really have much at all going for them. They’re extremely slow and only have a mediocre physical attack with poor accuracy. Their only noteworthy point is the aforementioned Armored status coupled with high Magic Defense as well (though they are weak to Ice spells.)
That said, Auron and Kimahri both ought to have weapons with the Piercing ability and can both one-shot this thing with little trouble.
Next up we’ve got the Mi’ihen Fangs: our first texture swap enemy! Final Fantasy X really has a problem with the whole enemy variety thing. With the battle system’s whole X beats Y enemy types (see: Auron beats Armored. Wakka beats flying, etc.) Square decided that instead of confusing the player with assorted enemies of the same class… they’d just fiddle with the models slightly, change the texture colors, and call it a new monster. Over and over and over. The Mi’ihen Fangs are just the Dingoes from back on Besaid with a different palette and a huge KISS style tongue added to the model. For reference, there are SIX more palette swaps of this creature running around in the game (collect all eight!)
Back on topic, these things are exactly the same as their Besaid brethren only with a slightly increased chance of their attacks inflicting Sleep or Silence. Must be something in the tongue. Their HP is buffed a whole… 35 points. So Tidus (or Wakka if need be) can easily one shot the thing in a single turn.
Next up we have the Floating Eye. Being a flying enemy, these winged Cyclops have extremely high evasion, with this particular one having high Magic Defense as well making Wakka the prime candidate to take ‘em out. Their only ability is Stare, which is a laser beam attack (what self-respecting Cyclops lacks heat vision?) that inflicts Sleep or Confusion status. Both of which are just more annoyances than anything.
Next up we have a regular reoccurring enemy of the series which have appeared in every single game in the series since Final Fantasy II: A Bomb! Bombs are a very gimmicky enemy. On their own they just cast weak Fire spells and ram into people for minimal damage. Their gimmick is a bit more dangerous. Every time a Bomb is attacked, it will grow in size (think starting at beach ball and ending at Resident Evil boulder.) After the third growth, if the Bomb has yet to be slain it will float over to a party member and self-destruct dealing a ton of damage and almost certainly KOing the character in question at this point in the game. They also take all their delicious AP with them if they self-detonate. So we can’t have that.
Being a big floating ball of cranky fire, they are unsurprisingly quite weak to Ice. Two casts of chilly magic from Lulu is more than enough to kill one. Throw in Wakka with a physical attack for good measure and it’s almost a guaranteed Overkill for a slick 44 AP. Not bad at all.
As a final note: Kimahri can use Lancet to learn Self-Destruct from bombs. The name suggests exactly what it does – transform Kimahri into a big blue furry Jihadist suicide bomber. Blowing up our Ronso ally in a crowded marketplace will deal a load of damage (3x Kimahri’s max HP) to an enemy but also kills Kimahri (No AP for him) and permanently removes him from the battlefield with no ability to revive or replace him, leaving the party a man down. It is a ridiculous novelty at best.
Up next is the White Element, the cousin of the Yellow Element from back in the Kilika Woods. The Element series of enemies actually aren’t just palette swaps. They’re all unique arrangements of random colored polygons floating around. That said, they might as well be since Whitey here is the same enemy with just a touch higher stats and all an attribute (Find: Lightning – Replace: Ice) done to its parameters. Cast Fire once, move on…
Last, but not least, we have the rarest beast of the Mi’ihen Highroad – the Dual Horn. These big bruisers have a bucket load of health (1,875 HP) and hit pretty damn hard with physical attacks and goring its enemies. That said… it’s weak to Darkness. So the strategy here is just blinding it with Wakka’s Dark Attack and then having everyone take turns beating the crap out of it while it flails around helplessly. It’s definitely worth it to kill any of these the party comes across. They’re worth a 42 AP (63 Overkill) but more importantly, they drop the quickly drying up Ability Spheres. Not really the most efficient way to stock up on them. But there you go.
As a closing note, Kimahri can Lancet these horny abominations to learn Fire Breath. Take a wild guess what Fire Breath does... It turns Kimahri into a stretchy Indian dude. I was surprised too.
So in summary:
- Auron > Raldo
- Tidus > Mii'han Fang
- Wakka > Floating Eye
- Lulu > Bomb and White Element
- Wakka's Dark Attack > Dual Horn
Kimahri can serve as utility character to supplement Tidus or Auron. Yuna is really the only completely useless character at this point. So don't forget to have her come in occasionally to do a token heal or doink a blinded Dual Horn on the head with her staff for some AP.
Welp. That’s a wrap on the random battle rundown for the highroad. Time for the lowroad of more cutscenes!
"Yes. My name is Yuna."
"Nice to meet you, Calli."
"Lady Yuna, are you going to bring us the Calm?"
"Yes, very soon."
*looks over at party* ”…Soonish.”
*begins running around Yuna* "Yay!"
"I'll do my best."
*frowns* <…Kimahri not even properly in shot. No respect.>
And so Calli and her mom walk off toward… who knows? There isn’t dick that direction for miles and miles other than open fields and hordes of monsters. Regardless, we never see them again so I assume they were immediately devoured by fiends as soon as they made it off-screen.
"What's the calm?"
*sigh* “…Really? Again with inquiries into the obvious?”
“Hey! I haven’t asked any world building questions since like Kilika! And Auron can vouch I’m not even FROM Spira like I said! Right Auron?”
"The Calm is a time of peace. It comes after a summoner defeats Sin, and lasts until Sin reappears."
"Sin dies and is reborn."
"Oh I GET IT! I thought it was weird. Yuna's dad defeated Sin ten years ago, right? But Sin's still here! Didn't make much sense till now. Wait... If it just comes back..."
"Don't say it isn't worth it... Because it is."
“…people can sleep in their beds without being afraid. That kind of time is worth anything.”
”I mean, I’m sure suicide rates are through the roof as soon as Sin lumbers back into a town the first time. But still…”
“Don't say it isn't worth it. Your words that day, Yuna -- I remember them well.”
A bit past where we learn about the Calm is a solitary abandoned blitzball in the middle of the road. It serves no purpose at all. That is…
…unless we click on it. In which case, Tidus calls up his inner Fei Fong Wong and belts that sonuvabitch far into the horizon for no particular reason other than to be a jerk.
A little kid even runs up and protests Tidus’ dickery. Nothing like a bit of NPC trolling to make travel easier.
After a good five minutes of intense running action the party comes upon a wagon with a pair of familiar faces. Well, we’ve met a half dozen new reoccurring characters. Might as well gab with a pair of old ones.
"Hey, we saw the game! You guys were great!"
"It figures the year I join the Crusaders full time and don’t bet on the games is the year Besaid actually wins the cup… My luck…”
"Hey! Stop loafing around!"
The Chocobo Knights from earlier gallop over…
”Talking to the summoner or…?”
“Whatever! Just be back to walking back and forth in your predestinated area ASAP!”
"Hey, Yuna. Even though Yevon rejected us...we still believe in you. That won't ever change."
"Thank you, Sir Luzzu, Sir Gatta. But, you know... It's not too late for you to go back to Besaid, and..."
"We should be going, sir!"
And so the two run off to chase down the runaway wagon they were escorting. I’ve got a good feeling about this whole Crusader campaign against Sin looming on the horizon. I mean surely a coordinated military campaign against an immortal force of nature made flesh has a better chance than our goofy party. Right…?
A bit of a jog further down the road leads to yet another optional conversation with one more new character for the D-List named character squad’s ranks.
"But Yevon's teachings say..."
"I-I only meant to..."
The Crusader storms away from the Spira equivalent of a Jehovah’s Witness…
"Are you all right?"
”Is that another weird hat or do you have some kind of crazy football shaped head…?”
“What is a football?”
“It’s this old game where you run down a field carrying and throwing this kinda pointy oval ball.”
“…Then why is it called football if you carry the ball?”
"Yes, I am Yuna.”
"It is an honor, my lady.”
"You mean the one Gatta and Luzzu were talking about?"
"I heard they were to use forbidden machina! I had to stop them."
"The use of machina is strictly forbidden by the Yevon priesthood."
”Preeeeetty sure I already told you this, ya? Was like the first conversation we had.”
“I can’t be expected to remember that far back.”
“…It was like five days ago.”
“Kinda been a busy week here, man!”
“…’kay, I can’t argue with that… But using machina…”
"That's bad, ya?"
“They still won't defeat Sin."
"But, it's not about defeating Sin! The teachings of Yevon must be upheld!"
”So if the Crusader guys made some super death ray weapon that blew Sin to bits forever, they’d still be on Yevon’s shit list for using machina…?”
“…This is going to cause issues eventually, isn’t it…?”
“But you don't understand! The Crusaders won't even listen to me. And it's all because I'm just a lowly acolyte."
“Well, I haven't been a summoner for very long myself, you see. Still, I can't put myself down every time I fail. People are depending on me. They're depending on both of us!"
*big fake smile*
”I don't understand why others cannot see it... Trekking across Spira to commune with spirits to call forth summoned beasts in hopes of briefly defeating a walking natural disaster is JUST as important as pressing my faith and moral standards guided by it on unwilling ears!”
*fake smile* “R-Right…”
“Thank you so much, Lady Yuna! Now, I feel I have the courage to finish my training."
Yeah, that’s great lady. Let’s book it before she starts handing out Yevon pamphlets.
A jog to the next screen later…
I know life expectancy in Spira must be abysmal given the myriad of monstrous shit that can murder the common man and I’m sure trade schools are in short order when Fantasy Godzilla can lumber into town and raze the place at the drop of a hat. But… whoever was hired to paint this place definitely needs to change professions… Yeesh.
*stops* "But, this is an Al Bhed shop!"
"They… they don't believe in Yevon, and in Luca they... They kidnapped Yuna!"
"Where were her guardians?"
*puffs out chest* "I'm not tired ONE bit!"
And thus, giving absolutely no fucks about anything that comes out of Wakka’s mouth, the executive decision is made by Auron to cram it and call it a day.
Video: Episode 35 Highlight Reel
Raldo Concept Art
Mi’ihen Fang Concept Art – The official canine of KISS.
Shelinda Concept Art – Nana, na-na-na nah nah na nah na nah na-na-na naaaaaaaaaaahh!