Part 35: Battle: Fuck SandPart 21: Fuck Sand (Battle)
It's time for that sacred Fire Emblem tradition, the desert chapter. This one's not that bad. Honestly, the hardest part is at the very beginning, and if you can weather that initial storm of mages, it's all cleanup.
But there's another desert chapter later
I'm getting ahead of myself though, here's the final prep work.
It's the update. I know I'm late okay I was busy.
Oh yeah, this too.
Don't fucking mock me, How's Everyone.
Here's the team for this map. I took out Luke because the sand will make his horse useless. Julian is joining us for this one due to the two treasures (REALLY GOOD TREASURES) on the map.
As soon as we start, this Wyvern Rider starts traversing the map...
And stops at the east village. Chat time.
: I don't like him, but he is indeed noble. Join forces with him.
Michalis, you could have dropped her off closer. She has a Wyvern. She's not like, defenseless. You'll see what I mean.
: Brother, what are you going to do now? Won't you come with me...?
: I have no intention of doing that. I only wish to find Maria and bring her home to Macedon.
: You've changed, Brother... Or should I say, you've returned to how you used to be. As I thought, back then you were being controlled by Gharnef's dark magic.
Ah yes, "dark magic", a great retcon-
Oh. Nope. I really like this, Michalis really was just kind of a douche, it wasn't just a plot device to make an endgame villain.
: I wished to crush the arrogant Archanea, and establish Macedonian supremacy over this continent. But Father, without bending his ear to me, distanced himself from me and later had me banished.
: Are you saying that's why you murdered Father? What a fool you were... Didn't you realize that was Gharnef's plotting all along? Yes, Father was strict with you. But it was only because he loved you. Why couldn't you see that?
: Enough, Minerva. Do you take me for a fool? After I was defeated, I wandered the gap between life and death. When I had come to, in front of me, I saw Maria--her eyes full of tears-- praying to the gods.
Okay, this is a pretty blatant retcon. Michalis was pretty damn dead.
: While I treated her like a pawn, Maria, she shed tears for me... Minerva, I'm going now. I have to save Maria. At least that can be my atonement!
: Hmm... I want to go home to Altea, but if we can't prevail against Hardin, then we can't go back. What in the world are we supposed to do...?
: We need to find out the secret of the strange power that's protecting Hardin. Forgive me, sire. As your Royal Guard, I was supposed to strike down your foes...
: No, it's not your fault, Steve. I too felt a strange presence emanating from Hardin, almost like...
Jagen says FUCK YOUR EXPOSITION
: The Khadein mage corps has launched an offensive against us!
: What!? Even Khadein means to be our enemy... Merric, what are you...
: Sir Jagen, what should we do?
: At this rate, it seems we have no choice. Sire, we need to break into the sanctuary, but you must be prepared to make sacrifices. If we don't hurry, Archanea's pursuit force will reach our rear and we'll be trapped.
No sacrifices here, keepin' it real, zero death count.
: I understand. We've no choice. Everyone, let's break into the sanctuary! But avoid needless fights if possible!
Let's start this out right.
Aww. You served us well, Arran's old lance.
You might recall a second thief up around here...
This is an E rank staff, so literally anyone with staff ability can use it, and it has infinite range. This is a nice prize.
Speaking of thieves, ours is heading east immediately.
The mages are descending from the north, but Catria's dodginess keeps her safe.
Steve also does not appreciate Wyvern RIders. Her hit list grows by the day.
Here's the first sort of tricky part of this map. All these mages and Etzel, along with that Dracoknight are going to charge you. Since nobody at all has any damn Res in this game, if they gang up on someone, they'll hurt. Keep in mind that all these enemies are unaffected by the sand slowing movement.
Wendell helps keep Steve on her feet, and gets a pretty good level by Wendell standards.
I could turtle up, but nope. BARST SMASH.
The most damaging thing they have is Etzel, so let's neutralize that.
: I have my ties to Khadein as well. "Prince Marth has succumbed to his ambitions and invaded Archanea." When I was told that, there was no way I could sit still!
Hardin's propaganda machine is in full swing apparently, because we haven't even been in Archanea.
Marth seems to be...falling for it though? Whatever the double ellipsis means.
: But... No matter how I put it, I just couldn't imagine you'd become that sort of person. Prince Marth, you said to me long ago that you wanted to let the era of war end. Do you still stand by those words?
In Shadow Dragon, Etzel was a Gaiden chapter character, meaning most people never saw him because those were stupid to get. Basically his wife died due to war and he joined Marth to put a stop to it.
: Yes, I do. I do not seek to fight.
: ...I see. I, too, do not seek as such. Allow me to join you once more.
And we get Etzel the Sorcerer. Etzel comes with a pretty good setup, able to heal and dish out damage with Blizzard. His stats are pretty good for this part of the game, but his growths are a little lackluster, and he's a prepromote. His Speed especially lands a heavy chance of kneecapping him later in the game. For now though, he's a useful character, especially with 12 damn Resistance.
Not bad, new guy.
I want to try and wipe out as many of these guys as possible on our turn so they don't gang up.
Engage the Steve lure.
There was a thief here. It's gone now.
scatter. No focus fire going on there. Let's see if that works out for them.
And now it's kind of a clusterfuck over here.
SUDDENLY I REMEMBER THERE'S SOMETHING CAEDA NEEDS TO DO OVER HERE (fuck thief)
Barst makes short work of one of the mages, but at what cost?
Steve throws the Crit Train into action.
Catria's on the edge of death, but the Mage is already a ghost. Look at that poor guy.
This one's even further gone!
The rather tanky Etzel takes up position to pull the last Dracoknight on the map.
And Julian picks up a unique and extremely useful treasure. The Boots give +2 movement permanently to any unit. I usually like to put them on Marth because he's so often running to villages/thrones/recruitable characters, but if people have other ideas, feel free to pitch in.
Steve helpfully demonstrates the last dangerous thing around here. Swarm Bishops.
I have no idea what is going on in that animation.
FUCK THIS GUY. This felt good.
I'm burning this.
Malicia shows Etzel who the real Archmage is around here.
Marth begins his quest northeast while everyone else huddles nervously out of Swarm range.
And Julian picks a pretty damn good Starshard up. Again, these are must-have items. This one gives +2 Mag.
I had forgotten Caeda was in range. This gives me ideas, though.
Oh, here's the boss. Aside from his interesting Tome (13 uses?), Yodel is boring as hell. You can see Team Actually Okay Res (And Jeorge) advancing on him.
And a Crit from behind ends one of those obnoxious Swarm guys. Nice, Caeda.
This is great for someone with a bad Speed growth (Etzel) or someone Speed screwed (Poor Ryan ) It's a stat booster, +2 Speed.
Surprise, we're on a bit of a time limit!
I just wanted to show Etzel's attack animation. It's...exciting.
And Caeda adds another Bishop shaped notch to her belt.
Yodel is now super duper fucked.
Get 'em, Ogma.
Bolganone is impressive...
But there is only one Archmage.
No clue, we haven't met him yet.
Oh come on
Some of these are going to start seeing some use soon.
Good level here, sadly Feena barely uses like half of those.
And Marth has finally reached his destination.
: My brother... Michalis, he helped me.
Prepare for the world's best underreaction.
: Really? That's good to hear.
"Oh, the crazed tyrant who I saw die a year ago kidnapped you from being kidnapped and disappeared while all these people I know are going crazy DIDN'T torture you to death? Good to hear."
: I was so worried once I heard that Prince Michalis had taken you. But, for him to rescue you: what in the world happened?
: Maria saved Michalis's life. She's kind, unlike myself... Maria's kindness was able to touch the heart of even a man like Michalis.
: But, isn't that what you wanted? That's why you deliberately avoided killing Michalis. Am I wrong, Princess?
: I can understand. No one can sever the ties between family so easily. Princess, please lift your spirits. I would like you to fight with us again, just like before. I would like Macedon's strength and yours in order to put a stop to Hardin's designs.
And with that, we have Minerva.
Tired of really good fliers yet? TOO BAD. Minerva is a prepromote who actually has decent stats and solid growths. Natural A in axes gives her axe-ess (hahahahaha i'm funny) to all of them, and C in Lances is solid too. Her speed can be a little iffy, but she smacks hard enough with axes that it's not a huge issue. Especially with...
The Hauteclere is the best Axe in the game. That's a whopping 20 might. It can also be Used to recover 10 HP, but that's what Vulnerarys are for, and Hauteclere is for hurting, not helping.
We're nearly done now, Marth needs to head back to the throne, and in the meantime...
I went shopping and grabbed a Steel of each weapon type.
Astram, would you get a fucking hobby?
Now this map is a chase scene. Hurry and get Marth to the throne. Feena comes in handy here, or you could just use Rescue...but I'd like to save it.
There's also sort of a rare mechanic here...
Actual Arenas! These are like the drill grounds, but...
-You don't get to see the combat forecast beforehand.
-You use an iron weapon (or Fire) no matter what you have equipped.
-It's an actual wager, meaning you double it if you win.
This looked bad until Navadbaddad decided to Crit.
No, because my HP doesn't autorecover. This can be a good way of grinding healers...if you don't have Astram riding your ass.
Thanks to Feena, Marth can end things next turn.
Barst also gets an arena win and recoups the money we spent at the Armory.
The heroes are getting close...I wonder...
Hey Astram, hope you didn't like these guys.
This is Etzel's crit. Can you tell? His hand is...higher up.
Kind of a shit level, but hey, Speed!
Smug Marth is back to end the update.
: Indeed, something seems to be happening. Steve, Merric's inside there. You met him during your training, right?
I tried not to use him.
: Yes. Sir Merric really helped us with his magical prowess. So Sir Merric is here... We must hurry, sire.
He only helped like once.
: Yes, let's go!
Okay, we'll save him. Jeez.
Fuck you game!
And a metric fuckton of talking.
Update 22: Failure To Communicate