Part 34: The Adventures of Theodore Ruxpin
Welcome back, everyone. With Balthalas finally dead (for real this time), the Bonewall that blocked our access to Ozland should be down.
Sure enough, we're able to sail into Ozland's river and toward the heart of the continent. The random encounters here are the same as on the open sea, but much more obnoxiously frequent.
As day breaks, we arrive at the only city - the only place of interest at all, in fact - on the island.
The people here have... accents. There's a lot of Australian slang, as you might expect, but the accents seem questionable.
Cidney's shops sell some outrageously good gear, but of course most of it is terribly expensive. We can't afford to go too wild with our purchases, but we do get an ultrawhip for Alibaba, a dragon mask for Larry (who's still wearing a leather helm!), and a set of dragon claws for Raj Ahtan. That last purchase will prove to be a very good investment before the end of this update.
Like Bombomb, Cidney is a two-level city, with bridges spanning broad sections of it. The roof of the inn is the most immediately accessible, though there's not much we can do here. We don't have any jerky, so for the moment the treasure on the other side of this dog is unavailable.
The local wildlife is extremely deadly, it seems. In that respect the similarities to Australia are accurate.
In the northwest corner of the city we find a pot containing a special treasure chest, an ogre chest. Inside is an ogre shield, a powerful piece of defensive equipment for heavily-armored characters. Yajirobe takes it for now, since is level is still a bit low.
We also find a chest containing a haste helm, which has somewhat low defense but grants automatic Speedup status. This is a great find.
Past a lengthy series of bridges, we come to this impressive-looking building.
Upon entering, we are immediately greeted by an explosion.
I know there were readers pushing for an engineer party member named Cid at some point, but I'm just as glad it didn't shake out that way.
Of course getting our airship isn't as simple as just coming to Ozland and talking to someone. At least we have a destination. But we should probably explore the rest of Cidney first.
This is the only treasure in Cid's workshop, but it's very appropriate. A shame we can't use it since Hexia is no longer a witch.
A little girl in the middle of town has lost her father's glasses. They're not hard to find, but... I have no idea what to actually do with them. The girl doesn't react to us having them, nor does anyone else in town.
Another unique chest hides on the east side of town, but it just contains a monster token.
In the door below Cid's, we find the governor of Ozland and his wife.
With the property damage he causes I'm shocked he's even allowed to stay.
In the governor's bath, we find an earring, presumably belonging to his wife. I'm sure she won't mind if we keep it; we can use the halved MP consumption more than she could anyway.
That about covers Cidney, so, following Cid's advice, we Return to Tyrsis and head south. We find what must be Grundo Island, but a ring of stones blocks our access. Guess we'll need to head back to Kaybee.
Remember this guy? He's the mayor of Kaybee, and after we cured the plague he suggested we return later to read his memoirs.
I find myself wondering whether anyone readying this LP appreciates this reference.
What a cool old dude.
We've already seen that we can't get to Grundo, but there's a shrine just south of Tyrsis that may be of help.
Zefiryn can get to this shrine, but the locked door prevents her from entering during chapter 2.
The shrine's teleportal takes us to another small island. It's not where the house is, but it's inside the ring of stones, so it seems like progress.
The other building on this island is a small dungeon surrounded by swap.
Inside is another multi-party dungeon! It's... not very interesting. It's a maze with a ton of damaging floors. There aren't any monsters, though, so it's more obnoxious that difficult. The damage tiles don't even accomplish anything since we can head to an inn once the dungeon is finished.
We've got big spikes, small spikes, floor switches... You get the idea.
We also have treasures, but the best of the lot is this cat o' nine, which is a direct downgrade for the few characters who can actually use it.
Our goal is to hit four switches, each of which disables a "swamp barrier" and gives us a small amount of EXP.
Upon leaving the dungeon, half of the rocks encircling the place explode, giving us ship access to Grundo itself.
We Return to Tyrsis and sail back.
This place has seen better days. It's in a state of terrible disrepair and there are corpses everywhere.
The front door is opened by this lever, but I'm not sure why we'd need it fixed since one of the doors is off its hinges.
There's a small shed in the northwest containing nothing of interest.
My obsessive interest with searching every corpse pays off as we find some tools. Again, I'm not sure why we need them, but if they're here, we probably will.
Around the side of the building is a wine cellar. Raj Ahtan is probably an ascetic, as he doesn't even consider drinking the wine.
The inside of the house is just as bad.
On the second floor, we find a letter discussing the balloon gas recipe. Considering all the corpses, I hope this doesn't mean we've hit a dead end.
Like the tools, we can expect this to be meaningful, but it's not readily apparent how.
Finally, there's a well. There's a treasure chest inside, but we can't get to it due to the bridge being out.
So... what now? Well, you may remember some incidental dialogue from all the way back in chapter 1.
The dialogue itself isn't what's important here. What's important is that this skeleton only came out at night.
Oh. Oh no. I see where this is going. This is going to be a series of busy-work tasks, isn't it?
Yes, it is, but at least we've already finished one of them.
And with that, we can get inside.
The dialogue here is unsettling in places. Some of these people seem aware that something is wrong, even is they can't place what.
Task acquired: remove wine.
The upper floor is unavailable at the night due to the house being so drafty.
Task acquired: get the carpenter to fix the bridge.
That's all we can do for now, so we head outside, wait for daybreak, and return.
Well, that was simple.
Apparently Raj Ahtan is not an ascetic, as he shows no compunction about drinking three entire barrels of wine.
We return at night and immediately head to the well, but the carpenter is extremely lazy.
Task acquired: get some wood planks.
Those are the planks in the southwest corner, but they're blocked by a cat. (Also, unlike the tools, the planks can't be gotten early - they can't be taken until the carpenter mentions them.)
Well, in the meantime, let's head upstairs.
The study is our final goal, but of course we can't get in yet.
Task acquired: get the watch from the well.
So, we wait for day, grab the planks, wait for night again, and give them to the carpenter.
From there it's just a simple trek to the second floor to return the watch and get the password.
We give it to the bodyguard, and he lets us pass.
I, uh, hope you weren't hoping for a happy ending for the ghosts here. We got what we came for, but these poor souls are still cursed to walk the earth every night. It's pretty fucked up.
But there's nothing we can do except to continue our travels. Let's head back to Cidney.
But of course, nothing is ever that simple. Now we have to go kill six gas dragons for their gas bladders.
Annoyingly, the gas dragons aren't the only creatures wandering the desert. Omegas and neuromoths are fairly negligible, as both are super fragile and die quite quickly. Kappas are more of a problem, since they're immune to magic, but they aren't too dangerous. Wyverns are the real threat here; they use Firebreath and deal a ton of damage with it.
And of course, there are the gas dragons. Gas dragons have a lot of HP and can poison characters with Gas Breath. Luckily, they're slow, and can be Slowed to further reduce their attack rate.
Also, they're super vulnerable to the dragon claws we bought for Raj Ahtan.
Just imagine this, but five more times.
There's also one more encounter in the desert.
You might remember the ghostly desert merchant from chapter 2. There's another one in eastern Ozland. As far as I can tell, no one in Cidney talks about it.
He doesn't sell much, but what he does have is quite good. We grab a mythril buckler for Lina (who's still using a leather shield) and, against my better judgment, a mythril dagger for Yajirobe. The increase in power is enough to justify it, though the price is exorbitant.
Anyway, after some more fighting, we finally have six bladders. Luckily, the drop rate for them is 100%.
Once the bladders are delivered to Cid, he gets right to work, and our lengthy quest for an airship finally comes to a close.
There it is, at long last.
The skies are ours!
Next time: We continue to pointedly ignore the main quest.
Level Up Roundup
Dispel removes buffs from enemies. Very niche but potentially very useful.
Dragon Quest veterans might expect this to deflect spells, but it actually inflicts Inept.