Part 15: Chapter 8x: The Blazing SwordChapter 8x: The Blazing Sword
...the Lycia Alliance Army wouldn't stand a chance. Therefore, Roy decided to obtain the Divine Weapons before Bern got their hands on them. Lilina showed him to a cave on the outskirts of Ostia, where the first Divine Weapon was hidden. Located at the foot of a volcano, traversing through the cave was going to be no easy feat.
Hey, I remember this one...
What! How many of 'em are there?
Dunno, Boss. I hope there aren't too many of them...
This is weird... The Lycian nobles have bigger problems than dealing with brigands like us.
Well? What do we do?
They probably don't know much about this cave. Just lure them onto the lava cracks and get rid of 'em.
The Divine Weapon is kept on the other side of this lava pit.
Lilina, are you all right? Have you calmed down?
Well... I'd be lying if I said I was really fine, but this isn't the time for mourning. It's up to me to protect Ostia, like my father before me.
All right... Good for you, Lilina.
Can you guess who the "canon" love interest is? It's Thany.
What? Did you just say something?
No, nothing. Oh, I suppose I should tell you what I know about the Divine Weapon. The one kept here is the sword that was used by Roland, one of the Eight Heroes.
Roland... Is that Roland the Hero, the first marquess of Ostia?
Right, he's our oldest ancestor. The sword is called Durandal, the Blazing Sword.
Durandal...the name has a strange echo to it. So Roland fought the Dragons with that sword during the Scouring?
That's how the legends go. There's also another story behind Durandal. After the Scouring ended, Roland returned to his hometown of Ostia. He then raised Durandal high above his head, and the land that had been trampled upon during the war suddenly bloomed with life again.
I must have missed that one in FE7. I'm pretty sure that's actually an ability of a different legendary weapon anyway...
The legend I heard was that some guy took up the sword to save the world from dragons but found it to be problematically heavy, so he sent five swordmasters to do the job instead.
Wow...that must be some sword.
Well, it's a weapon that can defeat Dragons. It must have some special powers in it.
Is it going to be all right?
Is what going to be all right?
I mean, there's always the chance that they might have taken Durandal.
No, don't worry. Only those of Roland's blood know how to remove Durandal from its altar.
Oh, okay. Then all we have to do is get rid of the bandits before obtaining Durandal.
Yeah, we've been here before, though it looks like they've done a little remodelling in the past 15 or so years. Anyway, welcome to our first gaiden chapter. Gaidens are a little different in FE6 than most Fire Emblem games. If you meet the requirements to go, you won't be offered a choice or anything, you'll just automatically go. This is because in order to actually finish the game and get any sort of closure to the game, we have to visit every gaiden and retrieve all the legendary weapons.
Anyway, the chapter works exactly like it did in FE7 (and every other chapter that's used this gimmick): stand on the orange-ish tiles, and you'll get blasted by a stream of lava for 10 HP at the end of the turn. The only notable change is that rather than always blasting you, it just fires them off semi-randomly each turn. I still wouldn't spend any more time on them than you have to though. Our crew this time is an assortment of people looking for another chance or just some training in general. Bors, Thany, Lugh, Oujay, and Saul are hanging out and clearing out the left path; Roy, Lilina, Rutger, Lot, and Clarine are going north.
Rutger (and Roy, but he's just a little too strong and fast to do it reliably) will be spending most of the chapter setting up for Lilina to clean up behind him and get some easy experience.
Like so. Only with better levels, hopefully.
Likewise, Oujay helps set up Thany for an easy kill.
This is a bit of a gamble - if Thany gets hit by the fighter and has the lava tile go off, she's dead. This is only the third turn, so I certainly wasn't going to cry over having to redo the chapter if it did happen.
I wouldnt have put it past IntSys to have code that detects this exact possibility and actualizes it.
Lot picks off an archer left alive by Lilina. I must say, I like where this is going.
Thany is spared when the fighter decides to go after Lugh. His funeral.
Oujay kills a fighter for an alright level, and Lugh and Thany kill the other to finish off the west corridor.
Saul heals up Thany on the way back.
The first real pain of the chapter shows itself here. Namely, there are a lot of units that don't move even if you're in their range. In order to bait the mercenaries/fighter, we need to hop in range of the mage as well. Fortunately he's not too dangerous (only a Thunder tome), but it's still a pain in the ass.
Roy dodges said mage for a turn or two and Rutger deals with him. What a waste of a level.
Ah, the differences between playthroughs. This is what Fire Emblem is all about.
What could possibly go wrong?
As it turns out, nothing.
The rest of the group has caught up with us now, so Thany baits a fighter for yet another level without strength.
This all feels so familiar...
This gives me a scare because if the fighter had landed, the mercenary behind him would have killed her.
The march is pretty uneventful until you reach this last stretch. The closest mage has Elfire which is annoying, but he's pretty easily dispatched by our own mages. The problem is the group ahead; the mercenary has a Killing Edge and the myrmidon has an Armorslayer, to say nothing of the mage/archer throwing in their damage potential.
They don't move, fortunately, so Bors takes the fight to the mercenary instead.
Aww, how cute. He thinks he's going to accomplish something.
Now that's more like it.
Okay, none of them move. That's good, I can set up on them however I want.
Lilina took a shot at the mage, but otherwise this keeps our dodgy people up front for the mage and archer.
Wait, no, you're not supposed to move! Fortunately the mage and archer decide that Rutger and Oujay are better targets than almost-dead Lilina, so it works out.
This sounds like the AIs fear of counterattacks paying off... but normally the AI will abandon that ideal in pursuit of KOs. Odd. Fortunate, though.
And this guy gets himself killed by the lava. I don't think I've ever actually seen someone die to the lava in this chapter, the AI is usually psychic and just so happens to be on the tiles that aren't going off this turn.
Only the throne room now. And lest you think I was joking about Aircalibur showing up everywhere now...
It's sparse, but it's everything important.
And Lugh finishes him off.
Damn, son. That's what we like to see.
Now time for the boss.
You thought Leygance was fun? Henning isn't particularly strong, but he's fast as shit and has enough skill to make that Steel Blade a legitimate threat. Both Lugh and Lilina will be absolutely slaughtered on his Hand Axe counter, but Rutger is just fast enough to double him with the Steel Blade equipped, so the strategy works out something like this:
Lugh and Lilina open up with a volley of magic and are rescued out of the way.
What are you guys doing in a place like this? Well, since you're already here... I can't just let you go, can I?
Next, Rutger baits him into using the hand axe.
After doing so, Rutger rushes him. This will not only give me a shot at him with the weapon triangle advantage, but Henning will switch back to the Steel Blade to attack Rutger at close range. We lose the weapon triangle advantage, but Rutger can double him when he's using the Steel Blade. At that point, we bring Lugh and Lilina back in and rinse and repeat.
I do love boss strategies.
A Clarine level patching up an unfortunate hit from the hand axe.
And that's enough of that.
One day, Roy... One day...
So this is Durandal... It's bigger than I thought. I don't think many of us are going to be able to swing it.
But history has it that Roland was a small man. I think it's the person's skill that determines whether he can use it or not.
Then if I improved my swordsmanship, I would be able to use it as well?
Maybe? Come on...at least say 'probably.'
Unlike FE7, there's no pussyfooting around it here. You get an S-rank sword user, you can bust out this motherfucker anytime you want to, the same with every legendary weapon we get. The catch is that in order to get the real ending, not only do you have to have gotten every legendary weapon, they all must be in working condition as well. So if you overuse Durandal and break it before Chapter 22? Well too bad, guess you're starting the entire game over.
I can feel the Hammerne staff calling.
What! They're here already?
You know what's a good idea? Going spelunking when you knew that Narshen was on his way to the castle you were trying to defend.
I must thank you for getting rid of that idiot Leygance for me. Now, you will surrender Ostia to me!
Don't be ridiculous! Who would give Ostia to the likes of Bern...!
Oh? Do you intend to fight us with that sad little group of yours? That's fine with me. I shall crush you, as I did with Hector!
???: That's enough!
You know, I like these odds a bit better.
General Narshen! A legion has arrived from Etruria!
I can see that, you fool! Why...
Yesterday, we were informed by Sorcery General Cecilia that Ostia had requested Etruria's protection. Therefore, Ostia is to become a protectorate of Etruria, as of now.
But do those Dragon Knights of yours stand a chance against these numbers?
I am Cecilia, Sorcery General of Etruria. Ostia will now go under our protection.
General Narshen, please control your temper! General Percival is the one of the greatest battle leaders in Etruria. And with General Cecilia here as well, we'll be slaughtered!
I know! We're leaving! Cecilia, is it? Watch your back from now on!
Y-Yes! I am leading the Alliance Army in place of Lord Hector.
I see. Lycia is in a time of hardship. Our king also sends his words of regret for Lord Hector's death.
Thank you for your consideration. If Etruria hadn't helped us... Ostia would be under Bern's control now. Thank you very much.
I am not the one to thank. I simply followed my king's orders. You should thank Cecilia, who put her foot down with the king to get his approval.
She...argued with the king?
Yes, now isn't that something? Well, I must be off. Two of the three Etrurian Generals shouldn't be leaving the country for so long. Cecilia, can you take care of the rest?
Yes. Thank you, Percival. You can leave the rest to me.
General Cecilia! It's good to see you again.
How are you doing, Roy? You look a little tired, but you seem okay.
Yes, thanks to Etruria, we were able to avoid disaster.
I'm glad we made it here in time.
I'm sorry. I put you through a lot of trouble...
No. It will be beneficial for Etruria for Ostia to go under our protection.
Yes. As you know, Bern's aggression is becoming a problem. We want to do something about it as well, but since we haven't been directly invaded yet, we have no reason to go to war with them. But if Bern gets any stronger, the balance of power on Elibe would be shattered.
So when Ostia requested protection, you saw it as a good reason to declare war on Bern?
Exactly. We simply did what would be the best for us. You're not in our debt.
All right. Oh, please come inside. I'll introduce you to the rest of the army.
Well, he is a boy, after all.