Part 45: Chapter 17B: River of RegretsChapter 17B: River of Regrets
Chapters 17 and 18 open in just about the same way. There are some differences, though. Let's jump right to the relevant scene.
: The great adversary of antiquity... The Demon King...
: Thats right. You know to fear my name. Prince Lyon was a weakling. Now, he is dead.
: That cant be...
: Prince Ephraim of Renais... You hold a Sacred Stone. Give it to me. I have no wish to see a warrior die a pitiful death beneath my feet. Bend your knee. If you pledge service to me, I may yet let you live.
: Do you take me for a fool?
: Youve made your choice, have you? A poor choice... But it does afford me a chance to show you something special. A force no human flesh can withstand. A horror beyond words. A power that will place this sad world under my dominion. I am the Demon King... Behold my might.
This chapter in general is completely unchanged from the original. No additional enemies, no new equipment. Everything's just bumped up in terms of stats.
This includes Lyon, of course. His defensive stats are decent, but his speed is almost non-existent. And I mean that in a literal sense. Fenrir weighs 18, meaning that he's being tanked all the way to 1 speed. The only person in our entire roster who couldn't double him right now is Gilliam, though I don't think that'd be the best idea anyway.
First things first, we're going to give people resistance buffs they don't need so L'Arachel can level up.
And level up she will need to do. She's quite a bit behind everyone else.
With an assist from Tethys, Innes is able to recruit Syrene on turn 2. I included their conversation in the bonus content of Eirika's route, but let's see it again, since it's rather nice.
: Prince Innes...is it... Ah... It really is you, isnt it, Prince Innes? Being rescued by you... Its like a dream...
: Syrene? I need a status report.
: Oh... Oh, yes! Please forgive me! The Frelian troops we dispatched were ambushed and decimated. My squad is all that remains.
: So many dead... You can rest easy now, Syrene. Im here. Victory is assured. Lets go.
: Yes, sir... Prince Innes.
Syrene and Innes don't have a support conversation, unfortunately, but Tana and Vanessa do. Still, it's pretty easy to tell what they think of each other.
Just as a reminder, here's what we're looking at in terms of stats for Syrene. She's not bad, but she's not that great either, at least compared to Tana and even Vanessa. Still, a free Silver Lance is always appreciated.
In the normal mode run, Syrene could have held her own against these incoming druids, but uh...I don't think I want to press my luck this time.
If we're going to retreat her though, we'd better take this civilian out of the line of fire. We've got a Rescue staff on the line, after all.
As always, we've got to watch out for the incoming hordes of enemies. This center island is going to become a popular place for our crew.
For whatever reason, the first few wyvern riders come in wielding Slim Lances. Not the best choice on this battlefield.
Innes is going to get a lot of mileage out of that Longbow. It's the perfect way to hit these casters without getting hurt in return.
And Cormag can take the kill.
Some paladins with Silver Lances want a piece of us. Lacking any axes in this crowd, I send the next best thing.
Granted, Ephraim still gets horribly maimed in the process, but the only other tanky option with a lance in this crowd is Cormag, and he's busy.
Meanwhile, Knoll's in the uncomfortable position of being fast enough to double but not fast enough to dodge.
It's fine. He avoids the one that matters, though one of the mages did have a Guiding Ring.
For a while, we're going to get druids from the weird structure that Lyon's standing on...
Cavaliers from these forts, and some wyvern riders from top left. The druids are dangerous, but the others are easily managed.
Let's not forget the Heroes wading up the river. Gerik has them covered.
Lots of folks are going to reach their promotion range, and many of them in a spectacular fashion.
I don't suppose I have to say that Innes will be handling the wyverns. It's fun having a skilled bow user at times.
It's also fun having a dedicated shaman, since dark magic has a wide range of fun applications.
That's the tome at work, all right.
Ephraim has been cheesing so many bosses for us in this run, his lance is almost completely shot.
But that's what the Hammerne staff is for.
Thank you very much, L'Arachel.
I take that back.
Oh well. At least Cormag's got his act together.
There are weapons and magic to buy on this map, but the prices are a little steep. I wonder if I can do something about that...
Incidentally, stores are a decent source of cover, since they gave +10 avoid. They're not the best, but any port in a storm, and all that.
I wish the hit rate of dark magic was a little better. Pulling stuff like this is always hilarious.
Gerik's got physical damage on his mind. No complaints here.
Eirika's got a ways to go before she can promote, so I feed her a few kills too.
A decent-sized level with the two most vital stats. I'll take it.
Marisa's also contributing in her own goofy way. Myrmidon crits are so odd-looking when you examine them frame-by-frame.
This is just lovely.
As usual, the Brave Axe is ripe for plucking, but it'll have to wait for next chapter or so, when I actually have an axe guy in play.
And acquiring the Dragonshield goes well. Sitting on a store makes all the difference.
Knoll's got enough of a weapon rank to use Eclipse, but it isn't the best idea. We've already seen how inaccurate it is, so it's mostly just good for its massive amount of weapon training.
As usual, Innes sets someone up...
And someone else knocks him down.
This draws the ire of the wyverns, but Tana's fine.
Fine enough, at any rate, to swerve on back and deal with the druid problem we're having here.
And in the process, she follows the normal tradition of ending her leveling on a low note. Splendid.
But at least Ephraim's still doing okay, minus the part where he doesn't have strength, but that's why Siegmund gives five strength.
And now we've got Warriors. No need to be concerned for our fliers. These guys are only carrying Silver Axes.
That's not strength at all, Gerik.
This was poor positioning on my part, since it put Lute within range of the cavaliers and the hero.
They all died, sure, but I was cutting it a little close there.
I'm having difficulty disliking this level, though considering he has the tome, you'd think he'd grow his major stats at least.
With the druid reinforcements gone, now we have to contend with a lot of axe men.
This joke has been promoted, though to be fair, Ephraim was at a disadvantage.
And we've got some new friends coming out of those forts.
While I get my sword users in position to take Ephraim's place, Knoll concludes his training.
Rather atypical of a Knoll level, but once again, can't really complain.
Now, I could have made him a Druid. Wouldn't have been the worst choice, since he could have used anima tomes for increased accuracy. Did you know that druids can use anima? They can, but the game designers rarely equip them with it.
However, I went with Summoner again, because this time, I actually get to show off Phantoms in a tactical context, rather than as a novelty.
Curiously, the shaman's promotion to either class is the only one I know of, aside from Pupil to Mage, where the attack stat remains entirely untouched. I guess the idea is that you'll be gaining a new unit, so the decrease in stat gains is to compensate for that, because as I found, later versions of the Phantom are quite deadly.
Though I plan for Marisa to ultimately be the one camping this forest tile, Gerik is holding the line until she gets there.
And Innes's efforts in the northwest earn him enough experience to gain...
A fantastic level, and a great deal of esteem in my eyes.
And Knoll starts deploying his party favors.
In its most basic form, the Phantom is a decent obstruction, taking the hit for one of your teammates and making an enemy waste a turn.
Goodness knows, some of our members need all the help they can get.
It should be noted that the Phantom that Knoll summons is a unique little fellow. You can't have two on the field at once, except if summoned by a different summoner, which also means you can't create a giant unstoppable horde.
It's small, but usable. Seems to be the theme of everyone but Innes.
Planning a sneak attack, are you? How could Innes respond to that but with:
A Sure Shot Critical Hit! Sadly, the next one misses, which means that he would take a hit next turn...
Except Phantoms don't care about terrain. They're ghosts, after all, so they just walk right over rivers and mountains like they're not there. An archer combined with a Phantom in a chokepoint makes for a funny combination.
The other duo of paladin and great knight is taking a try at the civilians. Can't have that.
Given how Eirika performed last run, these levels are quite encouraging.
These aren't. I should mention that defense and resistance growths are 15 and 5% less, respectively, than her growth in strength. She has to be doing this on purpose.
So about our shop situation. Who here would love a half-off discount on all the Killing-brand weapons you can carry?
Killing Corporation should have set their price point a little better, given how valuable their weapons are. But now they're all mine. I mean ours.
Yeah, after a certain point, being able to crit is no longer a real tactical advantage.
No problems whatsoever with more resistance. If he could get some speed too, that'd be swell.
You're getting soft, Gerik.
For those of you who like to pay attention to that sort of stuff, our dancer is doing fine. For a dancer.
And Marisa's leveling in this chapter ends in typical fashion. I'll still be promoting her next chapter, because I'm an idiot, but she's really giving me an ulcer.
Amazing what lengths these characters will go to in order to avoid getting stronger. That's a 35% difference between magic and defense.
One special thing about Siegmund and Sieglinde, and the twins' starting weapons too, is that they're marked "Prf," instead of a weapon rank. That means that they can use them any time, without even needing an S rank, but only they can use them.
Unfortunately, she's just a little short of promoting to Level 20. Who's left to hit around here?
I regret to say that my silly plan was a bit of a bust, since I'd overestimated how much Lyon's tome cut his evasion. He's sitting at a gate, after all, and that makes him a lot harder to hit.
But that's fine, because by not having Knoll beat Lyon, I discovered that there are actually different battle quotes for this chapter.
: I...I don't want to fight you!
: ...The cries of children. Away with you, insects, if you wish not to die.
And here's Ephraim's one.
: Where's Lyon? What have you done with our friend?! ANSWER ME!
: Heh heh...how foolish. The one you seek is already dead. I have cast him into the abyss from which I crawled. That weakling is gone. Only the Demon King remains!
The twins' portion are the absolute same, but for whatever reason, they varied the lines. I guess that's because it's not really established here that Lyon and Eirika have affection for one another, but I really miss the court jester line.
Anyway, that did it, so now it's time for her to gain a horse.
Bear in mind that in the previous run, we had to give Eirika stat boosters to prevent her from being a total eggshell. She's a lot better this time around.
Since Knoll's not hitting much of anything, I figured that Gerik could use a level.
I'm going to have an entirely promoted army by the end of this, aside from the benchwarmers, of course. That is my goal.
: But I am the Demon King... The world will be mine, as it was in ancient days. Injuries such as these are not enough to stop me...
: Come, Ephraim. You should follow me. If you've the strength to defeat me, that is...
: We will not let you flee! After him, Eirika! We have to find where he's gone. Search everywhere! I can't allow him to desecrate my friend's body any longer!
And following that, we get the same conversations, so now we have the Serpent Bow and the Winged Lance, plus a Rescue staff for saving the citizens. Nice haul, eh?
Next Time: We fight a Gorgon army the legitimate way and discover a new, unique method of fumbling a Sacred Stone in Chapter 18: Two Faces of Evil.
Total Resets: Still 39