Part 26: Leaving San VegasWelcome back, everyone! Last time, we completed the Four Towers and retrieved the Divine Halo.
Our first stop today is Paranor, where we have a few pieces of business to take care of.
The first is this locked door in the Gurus' basement. The stairs on the other side are surrounded by damaging floor tiles.
Down below is a chest, also surrounded by damaging floor tiles.
Inside is the Demonslayer sword. Despite the name, it's actually demonic in nature, and very cursed. It's super strong, but lowers defense to 1. Wielding it is basically suicide. No wonder the Gurus kept it sealed away - it's quite dangerous to both wielder and target.
Our other order of business in town is talking to this guy, who told us about the tunnel to San Vegas being blocked. Turns out that is no longer an issue, so we'll take his advice and visit the city.
After buying some new weapons and armor for those characters that need it, we set out. The trip isn't too eventful, though we do gain a few levels from it.
Vivify is particularly interesting, since it means that Hexia, rather than Karla, is the first person to attain a resurrection spell.
Finally, we reach the tunnel, and the engineer inside confirms that it's open.
The tunnel itself is very short and monster-free.
On the other side, we're given a choice of two routes: a swampy southern path or a longer western path. Both lead to the city, but it's nice to be given the option.
There are a couple of new enemies in this region. Thieves are pretty weak and sometimes run away. presumably they have some kind of stealing ability, but I haven't seen it. Chest lurkers also frequently run away, usually after putting the party to sleep. They don't give a lot of EXP, but they drop a decent chunk of money and, appropriately, a chest.
Finally, we come to San Vegas itself. There aren't any casinos here, but there are still quite a few worthwhile sites.
Naturally, Vegas has some high-quality shops. We don't have a lot of money, but Larry does get a new silver axe, which should help keep his offense competitive. The pearl earring is also exceedingly tempting, and likely something we'll return for.
Besides the shopping, there's also a lot of very juicy information to be gained here. Way back in chapter 1, we heard about a place that only allows women to enter. Not only is it here, but so is its all-male counterpart.
A few people talk about an airship, but we're likely a long way from actually getting one.
There's a Coliseum here, similar to Okasa's but even bigger. We're not ready to deal with it yet, but we will.
We also learn about some of the political goings-on in the city. Apparently the local count has a decent military force and a lot of money. His name also sounds oddly specific, but I wasn't able to find anything concrete about it. "Francis Miller" is a fairly plain name.
This is possibly the most interesting information in all of San Vegas. Three Elfstones are scattered throughout the world (apart from the white one that was lost with the Fellowship of the Stone), and each one will allow a character to change into an advanced class. Of course, we can't make use of this information yet, but it's pretty tantalizing!
We don't have any such rights, but this is another one of those things that we'll keep in mind. We'll need to get off the continent eventually.
Well, this is supremely bad news. It was sort of glossed over, but Okasa has a massive underground crypt. This could get really ugly!
So the guy with the airship is now blocked by a massive bone wall? Seems like something a necromancer might have done...
(Also, yes, in case it wasn't already obvious, Ozland is 100% an analogue for Australia.)
Behind the Coliseum is the fabled Women's Club. Holdana could enter, but she's too loyal to her friends and would never leave Larry or Wolff behind.
Team Magical Girl has no such issues, though.
Ooh, that sounds cool. Any clues on where it might be?
Oh, okay then. The Maneater is a pretty powerful weapon for this point in the game, and due to being a dagger is usable by practically every class. Harley takes it for now, because that feels appropriate somehow.
One of the shops has a hidden switch leading to a Tiny Medal. Kind of a lot of work for one medal, but there ya go.
In the local bar, a woman mentions another hangout of Shelby the Super Sheep. We'll keep our eyes peeled when we visit Jardin.
If we sneak around the bartender, we can take the back exit.
It leads to the Men's Club. Holdana, of course, can't enter here either, but Akira's all-male party is more than welcome.
Ah, of course. It's a "gentlemen's club".
Now that sounds like an adventure.
We've heard! And since the Maneater was found in the Women's Club, it stands to reason that the Ladykiller is somewhere nearby.
Bingo! Alibaba's falling a bit behind, so he gets to wield it.
Other folks in the inn and the bar, give us Shelby's remaining locations. Looks like he's in the other major cities on the continent.
Well, we know about the elite classes, if that counts.
More tantalizing information. We should look into these classes, since they don't seem to require any special items to acquire.
With any luck, Balthalas has already slain every frogite in the city.
Okay, enough wasting time. Let's go see the count.
He's not willing to commit his forces to the war effort, but he otherwise seems like a decent guy.
In his backyard, we find the count's father, who recommends we prove our worth in battle. Seems reasonable.
The keep's basement contains a familiar room.
Hitting the switch gives us an easy teleport back to Paranor, though it's largely unnecessary since Return exists.
Upstairs is the count's bedroom, complete with indoor swimming pool. I don't know who this is for, but it's a women's suit, so probably not the count himself.
As armor it is absolutely worthless.
But it is made of (or at least covered with) diamonds, so it sells for a lot of money.
On the roof is a man who gives us some information we already had. It's good to have the reminder, I guess?
In the attic is a chest containing an accessory, the Comet Girdle.
It's hard to tell exactly what it does since it doesn't do anything to the wearer's stats, but if the description is accurate it is extraordinarily powerful. Raj Ahtan takes it for now, until more testing can be done.
Well, there's only one thing left to do here. Let's visit the Coliseum.
I wasn't kidding when I said it was bigger than Okasa's.
Unlike the Kumite, the San Vegas Coliseum doesn't have championships. it's just a fight between one party and an opponent.
Let's give it a shot.
The Chariot's map sprite is a little... glitchy.
The Soul Chariot isn't a complex foe, but it puts up a good fight. It opens with Discord, temporarily reducing the entire party's ability to hurt it. It then uses physical attacks and Onslaught, a powerful attack against the whole party. With this team's sheer power and Karla's healing, the fight isn't too tough.
Regrettably, we can't continue to fight here. It'll be a while before we can return to challenge another opponent.
In the meantime, though, we at least got a decent reward. Since Holdana's party won the match, it seems only fair that she take it.
With nothing else to do in San Vegas, we depart and head south, then west.
We don't see any new foes on this trip, but we gain a couple of levels.
We also spy a mysterious ship sailing the seas. We heard rumors about a ghost ship earlier in the game, and this seems to be it.
Finally, we arrive at a small island containing a temple.
Its name is a little on the nose.
These classes sound pretty neat. Maybe we should check them out.
Unfortunately, there are a couple of additional caveats: taking an elite class cuts a character's level in half, and it can't be done until the character is at least level 20. We can't do this now, but we'll come back.
We've heard of these too, but information on them is scarce. Suffice it to say that they're very good, but taking one isn't a simple decision.
Nothing we didn't already know. We don't meet any of the requirements yet, but we'll be back.
The Temple of Class Change has nothing of value for us yet, so we Return to Paranor, rest up, and then head back to the shrine. From there, we go north, and come to another town.
Queensbridge is a neat little down that's much bigger than it initially appears.
The weapons and armor here are nothing new, but there's a dedicated shop selling recipes for Hexia. I'm not quite willing to commit 9000 gold to one, but we do grab the Restorative recipe, which makes strong healing potions. The accessory shop also has a new item, the Lucid Barrier, which resist physical attacks and could be really nice for areas with lots of strong monsters.
Oh. This is actually a little depressing.
Oh, actually, yes, we did hear about that.
Besides the bridge itself, there's a significant amount of land also being used by the town.
It looks like we've stumbled onto the trail of the Fellowship of the Stone. In case the Lord of the Rings reference wasn't clear enough, one of them even drops a blatant Return of the King reference.
Luckily, the steward here is way less of a dick than Denethor.
This is a lot of information, but not much of it is really relevant. We already know we have to find the stone.
A lady in town does offer us a potential hint, though.
North of the bridge is the temple, plus a well.
Inside the well is a twisting path and a Tiny Medal. There are no monsters here, so there's not much else to say.
Seems worth checking.
Imagine like 5 screens of this. Thrilling.
Finally, we emerge at the top, and find... something interesting.
Now this is relevant: we actually have a trail to follow. You might remember us having seen a similar sprite in Sudash's inn in Raj Ahtan's chapter. So I suppose we have our next destination.
Beneath a stairwell in the town in a sealed room with a chest surrounded by both damaging tiles and corpses. Which means we have a monster-in-a-box guarding a cursed item.
Oh wait, no, it's just an unguarded item.
And it's... actually pretty solid! Resistance to magic could be super useful in places.
Ah. Clearly Lich, the Earth Fiend, is causing the land to rot by corrupting the Orb.
Wait, no, wrong game.
Yeah, the Fellowship of the Stone went to the two towers and now everyone's waiting for the return of the king.
You know, I respect this.
And that's all for Queensbridge. Next time, we start our hunt for the White Elfstone.