Part 9: Storming the CastleChapter 8 Storming the Castle
Last we left off, we defeated the evil Kabel beast Slogar, Maya got her voice back, and we were about to proceed towards the castle.
This is the hotel where we found the sewer entrance. I mentioned then that the basic rooms alone were pretty pricey, but the worst offender is the Deluxe room which costs 80000. Its actually worth it though
This teaches us the Atomic Heat dish. The Atomic Heat dish is possibly the best cooking recipe in the entire game, and gives you incredible stat boosts for every stat. Kazan Curry gives major attack and agility boosts, but comes at the cost of defence (and takes some MP, but you can just rest to recover that).
The catch is we cant make it now, even after having learned it. It requires the Monster Meat ingredient that cannot be acquired until later in the game. Once we get it though, then well be trivialising boss encounters. I detail it here because this is where I had the funds to get the recipe.
Now lets get back to the plot, shall we?
If you thought beating Slogar was the end of the dungeon, you were wrong. Theres still a bit of the Ruins to get through.
This room contains a few items as well as these bookcases which detail ancient Kabel texts.
Remember the name Val Kenus, because itll come up again.
One of the enemies we didnt encounter last time is the Skulraptor. Its most distinctive attack is Deathgame, where is shows you a bunch of cards, and then shuffles them, expecting you to pick one. These cards will either cause harm or instant death to either one of your characters or the Skulraptor that used it.
We dont see this attack in action because Im destroying enemies too quickly.
These statues come to life as you pass them, and start a combat encounter with an unavoidable ambush.
But instead of just letting them ambush us, we can just have Galea smash them.
Here the plaque says There is an order to everything. So you have to light the pedestals in a certain order. Every time you do it wrong, the pedestals glow red and reset. Completing the puzzle gives us access to Adventurers Log 2.
The log tells us an ancient Kabel riddle .
This relates to this room, with a bunch of coloured pedestals. We have to follow the order of the colours in the riddle: Yellow->Indigo->Red->Green.
This room tells us to make 3 oclock, which involves making the light shine on this statue so the shadows form the clock hands of 3 oclock.
This gets us to the exit of the dungeon, but theres another puzzle we need to complete to get the key to open the exit.
This one calls on you to light the pedestals in a specific order.
If youre anything like me, you might have thought this asked you to light things in specific directions from the currently lit pedestal. This is only true for the first one, which is 7 to the right. Then, youre expected to go 4 to the left from the one you just made, and so on.
With all that done, we proceed.
We come out in Doplin Castle, in the prison portion we were in the first time we ended up here. The potions are still here, including the one that heals.
Doplins got better guards this time around. But theyre no match for us, even without using Origins.
So yeah, whatever happened to not shredding all the guards, Master?
I guess I overestimated the possibility of sneaking our way through
Doplin Reserves can apparently attack you with scroll-based magic attacks.
I say apparently because they only do it every two turns and no fight lasts that long at this point.
The old Doplin soldiers can still be found. Theyre just as weak as they were when we first came, so maybe it was an oversight.
Anyway, all of these enemies scream LORD DOPLIN! when they die too, including the new ones. So guess what?
Click here for another riveting LORD DOPLIN! compilation.
Once we reach the central section of the castle, we can lower the drawbridge and walk out.
Guard: Last I heard, the castle was closed. Isnt it closed anymore?
The guards step aside, allowing us to leave, rest, restock items, cook new food, the whole shebang.
Carrying on into the castle, we can access one area we couldnt last time.
This is Elliott and Mariennes room. Now we know how she got so fat.
We also find Mariennes diary, titled Boundless Love. Its a readable item.
Alas, my incredible genius has inadvertently attracted a Mystic! Guilty as charged, I must say.
(The mere word attracted in relation to Marienne makes me want to vomit, even in a non-creepy context)
But are you really a Mystic? Youd better call on those Origins, Ill feed you to the rats! Oh, to spend another day with my dear brother
(Why the fuck did she write her diary like it was talking to me? That gives me the creeps )
Heres an extremely anime styled picture of Elliott, including his full name.
Funnily enough, despite loving her brother to bits, Marienne drew his fringe on the wrong side of his face. Youd think she might remember his face and hair after staring at it all day?
On a bookshelf in their room, we find a book titled Uppercrust Dessert. This teaches characters new cooking recipes, all snobby deserts, naturally.
This is Doplins room. I have no idea what the joke/reference is with these book titles.
Also note he has a big portrait of himself over his bed.
Our quarry lies beyond these doors, and only a pair of low level guards block our way. Or so it would seem
is that ?
Now Playing Knights Kingdom
What impertinent behaviour to display here in Doplin Castle!!
Up ahead, in St. Joprians Church, Doplin, Bishop of the Holy Order of Banderas is
Guard 1: Raynof, sir! You mustnt say
Oh, yes! Doplin bringing in the Sacred Azure Stone is top secret, isnt it!
Guard 2: Hes the one that defeated Balken, Raynof, sir.
Thats right, readers. If you dont refer to the MIGHTY Balken properly, there will be consequences!
So. This is the lot that killed my brother, huh ?
Born to the Mesai Clan as one of 3 boys, remember?
Ill show you a thing or two before you die!
This guy wobbles due to Raynof smacking him for his impertinence. Remember his example.
Whats the matter? Speechless at the sight of me, are you? Well?!
Theres no escape for you! I WILL avenge my brothers death! Ill kill you slowly, inch by inch!!
Raynof isnt quite the delightful ham his brother was, but well get our entertainment out of him yet.
The very first time we use our Origins on him, we get this scene
I cannot stop trembling its power is incredible !
Heh .I am filled with fear but I will not run away!
Raynofs flunkies speak in what Im reasonably sure is a gay lisp. I dont know for sure if its intentional, but knowing Japan/Animes track record on bad gay jokes (see Persona 5 for one of the worst) there is a strong possibility the joke is that theyre gay.
Now, for every time you wipe out both of Raynofs flunkies (far too easy to do with Origin attacks), you will see this cut scene
This brings two more flunkies into the battle.
You can wipe those guys out twice in one round, provided youre having both Lang and Kazan use their Origins. Thus you will see this cut scene twice per round until Raynof dies (or you stop killing his flunkies in unison). Its both kind of funny and really annoying at the same time. Watch the boss fight video, and youll have AT MY HANDS! burned into your brain.
On a personal note, my brother, who only loosely watched me play this game a good 15 years ago, remembered this scene in particular. Raynof is basically a meme inside my family alone.
Of course, theres more than this cut scene to see during the battle. This one plays after the first round
I can also smell you burning in hell, huh?
This one plays after doing enough damage
However! I am far from finished! The people do not call me Raynof the Brave for no reason!
Now! On behalf of countless lives and their unfulfilled wishes
Come! I will crush you!
Flunkies: Sir Raynof! All hail Raynof the Brave, pride of the Red Knights!
Here is Raynofs special attack
replete with Raynof striking a pose at the end!
But so much like his brother, Raynof hits hard, but not nearly fast enough to actually pose a threat. We can easily heal from the damage he does and dish out too much too quickly for him.
Balken forgive me. I could not do it brother now our redemption is in your hands
Click the image below to witness Sir Raynofs Bravery.
Guard: Run! Escape!
They both flee like the cowards they are.
Hey now, he might have been no match for m-er, us, but he was brave enough to keep fighting in the face of our Origins.
Doplin, up ahead Sacred Azure ?
The Sacred Azure Stone It is probably the Aqualith, Lang.
Of course, while Lang urges everyone on, we instead do the smart thing and go back to rest and re-supply before going in.
Now Playing Holy Banderas Requiem
Hijiri Jopurian Raihaidou. The translation is accurate.
Lang then notices the huge stone slab.
Whats that? Theres something engraved on it
Oh, my!! That monolith! Theres one just like it in my village!
That monolith? Theres one like that in your village, too, Maya?
Yes. But theres something a little different about this one. Theres something black engraved on it
Just what exactly are you up to? Whats that monolith youre worshipping? Some kind of religious mumbo jumbo?
Mumbo jumbo! Bite your tongue!! This represents all of my ambitions uh, I mean Avalons ideal world!!
When the Black Sun engraved on this monolith rises then our utopia, our kingdom of the gods, will be born!!
Hmm?! Dont tell me you lot came here looking for this Sacred Azure Stone ?!
You cant have it! Its mine!!
What are you talking about? Avalon gave me this stone!
Besides, I need it! Its going to make me into a god! Ill never give it to you!
Now Playing God of the Evil Ones
Yes, thats right, our old buddy Gold Eyes is Avalon, the secret evil puppet master of Darakin.
WHAT A TWIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIST!!!!!!
Huh? So its Ava .lon, is it ?
Just as I was told .Here are Earth, Life .and Flame
Igohl: How could he survive?
So this is the Supreme Origin It radiates pure power
Avalon takes a step forward and looks intently at Lang.
I think this is the man !
Igohl, let me answer your question for you.
Wait ! Avalon!! What are you going to do?
Igohl: What is this light?!
Yes, theres no question about it
If you want the stone, go ahead and take it
Soon the Eclipse will completely cover the earth, and a new world will be born
And then the old race will perish, and only Mystics will survive!
I was born with one purpose alone: to change this world!
I will become the ruler of the new world!
No, theres no chance to become evil here or make any meaningful choice. You guys should know how this works by now. You just get to choose your flavour of rejection.
Yeah, maybe we DO have some kind of power that other people dont have.
But that doesnt mean we can do whatever we damn well please! Thats just plain arrogance!
Build a new world? With YOU?! HA!! You expect me to forget that you almost killed me?
And you sure as hell killed Edouard too! Like Id forget to bring HIM up!
You still seek revenge do you? Do you not understand that the past must be sacrificed for a better future?
You sacrifice compassion for power? I would rather die than be part of your new world!
So you refuse to cooperate, do you? You insist on defying me?
Yeah, thats right!
Hold it!! Were not through talking!
That beast you fought in the Kabel Ruins That was just a mere imitation of the real thing.
The one Im summoning now from the depths of hell is the TRUE beast.
Although its appearance is similar, you will know the difference as you pass from this world
Velna teleports away, leaving us with
This game has been pallet swapping a lot, even in its earliest dungeons. Zoan Stoara is perhaps the most egregious example of this. It is not merely of a similar look to Slogar, but the entire fight is just Slogar 2: Electric Boogaloo. That includes the story beats from the Slogar fight. Yes, we are going to experience Maya having a magical epiphany again.
The first segment of the fight is just like with Slogar. We cant hurt it, not with Arts and not with Origins. The only difference is Maya is here to stand still like she usually does rather than being plotted out.
First turn, we get a cut scene.
Thats Velna talking, by the way. Its not entirely clear if shes psychically speaking to everyone or were just hearing her thoughts for some reason.
By family she means race/species, as in Mystics. Its not some weird Final Fantasy 8 revelation where everyones secretly related.
(Why do they choose to be destroyed )
(We are a race very much in touch with nature and if we are to disobey our hearts )
(There is a price to be paid for such action )
Leave this to us, and hide in a safe place!
Not even this thing!
But try as we might, we cant hurt it.
What should I do? I have to do something or else
The game makes us dither for another turn or two.
I will keep my promise, and return with the Aqualith!
No matter what I will never give up!
Mayas Memory: Earth and Wind Water and Fire You must hold the whole world inside your body.
Earth and Wind Water Fire
Suddenly, Maya has an attack command. We have to enter the exact sequence from the memory: Earth, Wind, Water, Fire. If we dont do that, Maya will dither and tell you how you did it wrong by cut scene. This wastes a whole turn of combat.
Just like with Slogar, the fights not over yet.
And just like with Slogar, the rest of the fight is easily manageable. Zoan Stoara will just alternate between single hit and full party attacks, but will never do nearly enough damage to make us worry.
The only difference is now we can use Arts with Maya. Unfortunately, the most common strategy up to this point with Maya is to equip her with the Barricade Ring accessory. This gives her a skill called Turtle which gives her increased defence in exchange for sacrificing attack. As Maya couldnt attack until now, this was the perfect strategy to make her a nearly invincible healing machine. Now that she can attack, the Turtle skill cuts her damage down to the hundred range. Lang and Kazan are doing closer to 4000 per round each for comparison.
But this changes little, as Zoan Stoara still goes down like a bitch.
Click the image below to watch the Slogar boss fight. I mean, the Zoan Stoara boss fight.
(In almost poetic fashion, this video has similar and somewhat worse slowdowns than Slogar. Apologies again)
That guy said Lang is a star shaper
Hmm That man also carries the Supreme Origin
What was he saying? Something called the Eclipse would completely cover the earth Hes a mysterious one
Lang, you can save your village now that youve got that stone back, right?
Yeah, thats right! The whole village will be safe with this!
In that case, lets get a move on, back to your village!
(But I still wonder why Why did he give me back the Aqualith ?)
Before we can go anywhere, were spirited away to another cut scene
The sacred stones? But
Yes of course. Rauss and I will defend the altars to the death!
Rauss is presumably the armoured hulk standing next to Velna. Havent we heard that name before?
I want to give that boy a little test. I have to see if he really holds the same power I do.
If he really IS a Star Shaper, hell eventually find his way to me and hell be carrying all three stones!
I look forward to that moment
You can see where the plot is going from here already.
On that note, we shall end this chapter.
Join me next time, where we return the Aqualith and the world changes forever.