Part 36: Chapter 8 and a New Journey: The End of the BeginningChapter 8 and a New Journey: The End of the Beginning or Chapter 8: Don't Write Updates While Hungry.
: Like me, for instance.
: That sounds reasonable.
: Oh, good grief...
It's finally here: the end of the first act. Hard to believe that we're more than a third of the way through the game, and we haven't even switched protagonists yet.
For an end-of-story-arc boss, Tirado really isn't that great. Look at that speed and luck. Just look at it. Once we get him to switch to his javelin, he'll be history.
We've got a special guest with us today. Neimi hasn't gotten quite enough love in this playthrough, so I brought her along in the hopes of not immediately benching her.
Not much to say about the first turn. The opening enemy lines are ill-suited to fighting our crowd.
And then our hero arrives.
: Why are you shouting, prince?
: Because my sister's here. My bracelet tells me so.
: ...And I suppose your bracelet has a plan of attack too?
: Naw, we're just winging it.
: Of course.
This is the javelin's last stand. Remember, aside from the Killer Lance and Ephraim's fancy spear, this is the only weapon that doesn't give a speed penalty in their arsenal.
Meanwhile, with some assistance from Joshua, Neimi clears a path for Franz.
Welcome to the crew.
Don't worry, he's had enough of a head start that this doesn't matter.
Kyle's a bit behind in speed, to the point where he can't double an archer.
He's working on it though.
The castle's knight storage is a little difficult to approach. We'll be slowly wearing them down with Garcia at the head.
Alternatively, we could have used Franz, but he's assisting these three.
Not looking forward to this change coming up.
Lute's our go-to person for weakening magic users right now. Even with the boosted resistance we've been getting, their power is still no laughing matter.
As tempting as it was to run Seth in there, it would be a waste of experience for everyone else.
Though honestly, do they deserve it?
It's at this point that I notice the trio of cavaliers coming in. Ephraim will deal with those.
Lute makes for a good knight cooker, but only if there's someone to take the hit for her.
Her levels thus far haven't been geared towards direct combat. She's more of an artillery platform, really.
I'd be disappointed, but HP is always important for someone who can't take a hit.
And this marks the end of the javelin's life. It was a worthy weapon while it lasted.
As I mentioned, Ephraim has no problem dealing with the cavaliers.
And hey! It's strength! I never thought I'd see that.
And whoa! Speed!
And this joke is kind of running its prime.
Don't think I've forgotten about Neimi. She's getting what she can scrape up.
This little section here is a bit of a puzzler, since there are very few safe places to stand.
Remember, the archer on this end has a longbow too.
Approaching the throne gives us the usual mage reinforcements and a thief.
Also, Neimi finished that archer. Hooray.
I'd leave the thief for someone else, but you get a bonus for smiting a thief if you're promoted or not, so it seems a shame to waste it.
Level 13. Quite the unlucky level.
Speaking of luck, Forde simply refused to crit this chapter, even with the Killer Lance at the ready. Kind of disappointing.
Kyle had to finish the knight off instead.
In order to aid this bumbling band in breaking a wall in peace, Seth deals with a pesky archer.
And then, when Forde fails to crit again...
He kills the mage too.
All that's left is drawing out the soldiers here bit by bit. I was feeling a little tired and didn't want to risk going through the level again.
I shouldn't have been so worried. They're strong in terms of power, but we could have taken them.
: Do you know what might have caused this change?
: I don't blame him really. If I'd had to live with you-know-who for two more days, I'd have done an Orson myself.
: Yeah, Forde is kind of obnoxious, isn't he?
: I...Yes, he is, your highness.
Drawing in the magicians like the soldiers...
And making another very un-myrmidon-like level off of it...
Gives me the opportunity to bait Tirado as planned.
Tirado with the javelin is very easy to handle, as can be seen.
Clearing the way for Colm to loot, meanwhile, gives Forde a level.
Following in your younger brother's footsteps, eh Forde?
And Natasha gets an okay Cleric level. Not like the ones she'd been getting before, but it's okay.
So let's set this guy up for Ephraim. Seth skewers him...
Lute cooks him...
Quite the seasoned warrior, eh?
And Ephraim serves him up.
Nothing to do but grab the Elysian Whip and Silver Sword, break Natasha's healing staff while training her up, and build up supports.
*five minutes later*
: ...Yeah, that Lyon sure was a character, wasn't he?
: Sure was...
: Good thing we've got ours in an impregnable tower, eh?
: Our impregnable tower! It's been...uh...pregnated?
: ...Well, dang.
: You know what this means, brother?
: I think I do.
: Road trip?
: Road trip.
: Road trip! Yeah!!
And we get some traveling money. Apparently throwing around cash is the one thing that Hayden's good at.
I must say, it's been fun writing up this little reinterpretation of the opening part of the game, but unfortunately, it's time to get back to the real plot.
: I'm leaving Eirika in your care.
: Actually, milord... We have the honor of riding with you.
: What? What about Eirika?
: The princess informs me that she will be accompanied by a Frelian escort. She tells me she does not need a large retinue on such a small ship.
: I understand, but we must be prepared for anything. I will be fine, Seth. Please go and attend Eirika.
: Lord Ephraim, this is Lady Eirika's wish. She implored us to lend our blades to you on the front lines... She spoke to each of us individually. She knelt before us and beseeched us to go. Her sincerity, her concern... We could not help but be moved by her plea.
: But steel yourselves. This will not be an easy journey. I want only volunteers who are unafraid of meeting death.
: I'll let the others know. I must tell you, milord--they are already preparing to depart. They know the risks they are taking, and not a one will be deterred.
They'd better be ready for a real battle then. Some of the levels in this side of the game are going to be a real doozy.
Next Time: We meet one of the fandom's most cherished characters in Chapter 9: Fort Rigwald
Total Resets: 20