The Let's Play Archive

Linda Cube [Linda³]

by ivantod

Part 6: Spring 1992


Last time, Ken had an unpleasant experience of meeting an individual claiming to be his twin brother, Nek. Nek also claimed to have killed their "real" father, whatever that means. The whole thing happened in the "special observation cell" which we've heard before is supposed to be housing the mayor of Koshikata, who was imprisoned there some years back after an "incident". Nek in addition, seems to have managed to frame Linda for the whole thing (and who is still missing her memories, btw). However, it seems that later on she actually managed to escape from custody and a couple of her guards were found dead. After that, Ken went exploring a bit in a cave housing an archaeological dig and there we found some weird pods, looking very similar to the ones we have seen on the ark.

When we left off, Ken had just finished handing in some animal species at the ark. But I think we should head back to Hospico now, to try and find out more about the whole situation from the last time!

I don't feel like using the Bird Line today, so we'll just take the tunnel and walk over.

But a weird thing happened, I managed to accidentally walk back out, and just as I did...

...the game decides it's time for Winter 1991 to change into the new season of Spring 1992! That's no problem, we're way ahead of schedule anyway. We have 7 years and 1 season left until Summer 1999, and 7 species left to collect to fulfill the winning condition of 30. Theoretically in Scenario A you can capture a maximum of around 80 different species (out of a total of 120 in the game), so I think we'll manage!

I should probably clarify that when I say "a total of 120 in the game", I mean that this is the number of species that can be captured. There are in fact a few other enemies in the game which aren't actually possible to capture. But we'll have a chance to see those later--probably not in this scenario.

In any case, let's go back inside.

As we (almost) always do, we'll head into the building and have a chat with the receptionist!

Well, that's not so good... I'm not sure if she'll be able to claim insanity, though?

Uh, ok?

Let's proceed on to the actual hospital ward building.

There are some new people around. For example, this pregnant lady here in the hallway.

Huff puff, huff puff, huff puff... Does this seem right to you?

I suppose she's practicing breathing for the childbirth?

[ Sure thing! ] / What even is that?
No matter how much I practice, I'm never sure I'll be able to do it right, when the time comes to do it for real!

Over in this room, there is another person:

If you're going to be a criminal, it's best to either be a ranger or a pregnant woman. After all, almost nobody will remember our faces because all they see is a uniform or a pregnant belly. Don't you agree?

Man, the pregnant women in this hospital have some really dark thoughts...

Going back to the other side, over here is our friend Sachiko:

I've passed the exam to no longer be a trainee nurse!
The only thing is, I'm still not so good at giving injections. So I just go "three, two, one, shoot!" in my head when I have to do it. Of course, I don't mention this to the patients!

Somehow, during this conversation, Ken again gets a message notification! We'll check that out in a moment. First, there's this other person in the computer room:

The psychology of male parents is very complicated. If the child resembles them, they're somehow uncomfortable, but then they are also uncomfortable if it doesn't! That's a very selfish way of seeing things.

Interesting, but let's head back out and check out the "special observation cell", where weird stuff happened last time.

The entrance seems not to be guarded, so let's head in!

Inside, we find Chen, the hospital director. I'm actually surprised that this guy somehow doesn't actually have a portrait for the dialogues?

I gave "Memorin Z" to Linda... but I don't know if it will be effective.

I assume that was before she somehow escaped?

But I might as well talk to you. I can't remember anything from when the mayor was killed in the special observation cell. They told me I was the one who alerted the rangers, but I really don't recall that either...

Hmmm, so was the murdered person actually the mayor of Koshikata and was he truly Ken's actual father? I guess we'll find out (maybe).

If we check out the cells, there seems to be nothing new there and we can't go in anyway. So let's just head back to the town entrance.

Let's listen to our new message! It's from the commander.

It's the commander! I need to check something, so I want you to come back immediately to the HQ! Come quickly! That is all!

All right, back to Hardia it is!

To the Ranger HQ, where we go up to commander's office.

I would never think you had anything to do with that, but still I want to hear you say it! It was not you, right?
[ Sorry, but actually Linda is hiding at my house! ] / But, I was with you here at the time it happened!
I don't have time for your silly jokes, but I'll stop by the house later to check, just in case!

As always, when it doesn't matter, we'll go with a funnier dialogue option!

It's making me sick to my stomach that there is another person walking around who looks the same as you...

Before we go... since it's now the year 1992, I guess the "fan service" calendar must have changed? Let's have a quick look.

Looks like it's Sachiko this time.

We are also done here for now, but as Ken starts to leave, Ben stops him...

Ken! one of the guards who were killed was stripped of his clothes. You know what that means, right? The killer might be walking around wearing a ranger's uniform!

And as that lady in the hospital said, that makes him practically unnoticeable!

So at this point, I figure we might as well go a bit north to try and catch some eagles so we could try out that sword... But just as I was getting started... guessed it, Ken receives another message notification! Ok, fine, we'll head over to Battle Park to hear it.

The message is from Ken's mum!

Ken, it's Mum. Where have you been wandering about! Return home immediately! I don't want to talk details over the phone, but... well, anyway. There is a problem and I need you to come back home right now! Do you understand?

What could it possibly be that's so urgent? Well, not like we have a choice, so let's go!

Back in Hardia...

...Ken's mum is waiting in front of the house!

And inside...'s Linda in a dressed in a Santa suit! So THAT'S how she escaped!

I found her sleeping on the swing in front of our house, looking like this! I have never felt this nervous, ever since your father proposed to me!
Well, anyway, what are we going to do about this, Ken? Linda is on the wanted list, isn't she? Things being what they are, we can't exactly talk to the commander about this can we? Oh, what a bother...
I'm sorry for causing so much trouble...
Oh, what are you talking about! Linda! No need to be so formal, I've known you since you were a baby! I even scolded you when you played rough! So I know you well! I know you're not the kind of a girl who can kill someone like that!

This party is interrupted by the arrival of Commander Ben!

Commander! You couldn't have shown up at a worse moment!

I'm sure you've realised by now, but for today's episode the game has decided to switch into a full on sitcom genre! But I'm positive there's something gruesome waiting around a nearby corner somewhere!

So, here's what we're going to do... Come over, and talk to me for a second!

They go over to the side... then...
But that's silly...!
No, listen to the end... ... ... right?
Really? Well, if you say so...! Ahahahahaha!
And so, finally... ... ... and that's it!
Ahahaha, all right, I got it, that sounds good!

She turns to Linda...

Linda! Come over talk to me for a second!

They go over to the side... then...
But that's silly...!
No, listen to the end... ... ... right?
Really? Well, if you say so...! Ahahahahaha!
And so, finally... ... ... and that's it!
Ahahaha, all right, I got it, that sounds good!

Well, whatever it is, they seem to have agreed!

All right, Linda, come with me!

The two of them go away to the downstairs room for a moment...

[ What was that with "Ahahahahaha"? ]/ Please tell me what you're hiding from me?
Don't worry about it, just leave it to your mum. They'll be back in a moment!

After a few more moments, Ken's mum comes back...

All right now Linda, stop laughing and come up so that everyone can look at you!

Linda comes up the stairs...

...and now she's a ranger too! Does that mean she'll also join our party? Spoiler alert: yes it does!

The ranger uniform used to look slightly different back in the PC Engine days, so here is the same screenshot from that version:

And before you ask, no the Santa outfit did not have a close-up in the original version--that was added for the remake.

In other words, what we have here is a wanted person wearing a ranger uniform! It is, as they say, the darkest under the lamp post--hiding like this in plain sight you're unlikely to get caught!
Ken, maybe it's just a silly idea of mine, but... maybe you could go and show Linda around various places ? If she sees things she's familiar with, perhaps her memories will start to come back gradually?
Good idea! How about... take a trip to Ozport Public Park? Or really any other place you can think of?
Take me there, please, Ken! I want to start from the beginning and visit all the places you and I have memories of!

Well, it's clearly time to be on our way, but one last chat with Ben first...

Ken. I just wanted to tell you that I have been quite forgetful lately. I can't even remember any more that I've met Linda today, and also I have no idea where I've put that uniform. However, if you get into any sort of trouble, don't hesitate to come to me if you need help! I will take care of anything you need!

Well, that's nice to know. The commander certainly seems to be an outstanding guy.

And one final chat with Ken's mum:

Oh, right, Ken, I almost forgot. When the two of you were still little squirts, you told me once proudly that there is a secret in Ozport Park that only you and Linda know about. So look into that.

All right, now it's time to go for real!

As we come out, Linda notices the swing in front of Ken's house (or rather what used to be both of their houses, since as was mentioned, Linda's familiy moved to Minago at some point in time).

To be clear, despite what she's saying, the only place where we actually need to go is Ozport (one town which we definitely haven't visited at all so far), but there are a couple of other places where you can see some optional scenes/dialogue. In fact, those optional scenes were added in the remake--in the PC Engine version at this point you would more or less just proceed to Ozport directly.

Before we proceed with anything, however, since we now finally have Linda in our party, let's check out the party stats screen!

Well... I guess there was no reason to expect otherwise for a game of this vintage, but yes indeed Linda joins us at level 3, more or less where we left her. At least in this game there is a plot justification for this situation, since she spent most of the time since the start of the game actually in hospital! But that's ok, because for example fighting Earthworms in Marblepolis gives a ton of EXP, so she can get up to speed pretty quickly if needed. We'll take a bit of a break from capturing for the time being, however.

All right then, so the first thing we can do is, sit on the swing.

This swing... it's just like you. Blunt and comforting. Just being on it makes me feel happy... something good must have happened here. But what was it? I want to remember it soon!

Well, one of the things that happened here was that Linda proposed to Ken when they were little kids. But this is kind of glossed over a bit in the prologue cutscene in the remake, even though it was shown in more detail in the PC Engine version.

Anyway, next thing we can do is go into that little shed.

We played here as kids, didn't we? We were six and you were the doctor and I was the patient.
You said with a serious face, "Please now take off your..." Uh, I can't remember what you asked me to take off...
It was your... top / trousers / skirt.

You can actually choose here, but it doesn't matter because it continues the same way regardless, namely like this:

Ah, that's right! This is what I did back then also when you asked me!
No, you really did take it off, honest! / Well, you could take it off now? / [ I guess this is the "punch"-line, huh? ]
That's right! This is what you said back then, too!
Well, I guess that's about all I can remember here for now... Ken, did you expect something more? I can see it on your face.
[ Well... ] / Not really.
Then, let's come back here when my memory gets better, ok?

Before we leave though, over there on the back wall there is a photograph we can look at:

The two happy families, some years ago!

Incidentally, here is what this picture used to look like in the PC Engine version:

All right, let's move on.

As we head out of Hardia, I guess I can point out that this game uses again Dragon Quest style, so when you're in town both of your characters are visible, instead of getting "collapsed" into one like in Final Fantasy games. Anyway, let's get a move on.

As we walk through the entrance area, Linda seems to get a bit uneasy...

Sure thing. In fact, let's just head to Minago first!

As always, it's just across this river!

As we head to Linda's house, there's a ranger here that we can talk to.

If the mass disappearance is a case of kidnapping, then how did the culprits get the residents to leave with them? That's the mystery... it's not like they could have enticed them with sweets, now is it? Even if they scared them with weapons, surely many people would have resisted. So they must have left on their own... it's like a magic spell or something!

That's interesting, because, yes, there's still that whole story about how all the residents of Minago had disappeared, too. Lots of stuff going on in this game, that's for sure.

Linda's house, you will recall, is in the northwest part of town, so let's go there now.

We want to head over to Linda's room, but first, in the kitchen...

Some more meat to use! We should remember to not let it spoil, as we're heading into the summer soon! All right, now up to Linda's room one floor above.

Ken sure seems to get a lot of message notifications these days! We'll listen to it on our way out of Minago shortly. But anyway, where were we...

When we first moved here, you brought all our friends here for a visit! And we were... wrestling?
Um... um, can I do a cobra twist on you? I have a feeling it will help me remember?
Yeah, sure. / [ If it's not going to hurt... ]


Ken takes 15 HP damage!

Please endure just a little more! I'm about to remember!
[ Still not...? ] / Stop!


Ken takes 13 HP damage!

Please endure just a little more! I'm about to remember!
[ Still not...? ] / Stop!


Ken takes 10 HP damage!

Please endure just a little more! I'm about to remember!
[ Still not...? ] / Stop!

Ouch! Ouch!

Ken takes 15 HP damage!

Please endure just a little more! I'm about to remember!
Still not...? / [ Stop! ]

It broke... / [ It was Jean! ]
No, it was John! I was just doing a key lock throw on him at that time...

Another wrestling move, by the way.

After that, you were scolded by John's mum instead of me... Do you remember? "It was me, I did it! Sorry!", you said to her.
Ken... thank you for everything! 🎔
*kiss* 🎔

But, that's all for now, so it's time to head out!

But, as we leave the house, Linda...

We do... And then:

The night when it happened... there were two Santa Clauses standing here, and... and...
And then... dang, I can't remember what happened after...

Well, at least she seems to be slowly remembering bits and pieces...

Heading back out, we'll pay a visit to the church. There isn't actually anything for Linda to remember there, but let's just check it out see what's inside, right?

Also... there's again that weird symbol above the door. We've already seen it in that underground area, but that stuff seemed pretty technlogically advanced, and we know that the Beastians weren't really like that when the settlers discovered them, so they probably weren't the ones who came up with it. There are many questions, and discovering the answers to those is basically what the overall plot of this game is about, of course. So we should expect it to take playing through all scenarios in order to get a complete picture, but I guess that's not a surprise.

Anyway, inside.

Looks neat. Let's take the stairs.

This place is pretty big. We'll keep going upstairs.

Still climbing.

And... there's a lone ranger all the way up here that we can talk to!

First the Christmas tragedy in Koshikata years ago, and now this mass disappearance... Why are there so many troublesome incidents in Beastian towns? Are they cursed?

Oh, so the Koshikata incident everybody keeps talking to was also a Christmas-related thing and it was one of those Beastian autonomous towns too? Interesting.

Since, yes, indeed, we only came to the church to talk to this guy, we'll head back out now!

On the way back down, we pass by this room containing a chest. But do you know what? The door is locked! What a surprise!

Needless to say, we'll be coming back here. But for now, let's listen to that message, finally!

The message is from Nek.

How you doin' bro? It's me! I forgot to tell you someting important, so I'm extending you the kindness of calling you now!
You won't be able to take off with the ark until Linda recovers her memories! If you doubt me, go and visit the command bridge! I set up something funny over there! Hehehehehe! See you soon, I'll be in touch!

This is a bit clunky here, but of course there has to be some way of making sure we actually finish the plot before taking off. Otherwise we could just go right now and finish the capturing and take off, right?

In any case, the ark was anyway where we were going to head next with Linda, so let's do that.

So, until now we were only really coming here to register the animals, but I'm sure it didn't escape your attention that there's that staircase going up on the right side. In fact, there are two more "decks" on the ark. So let's head up!

But, over here... a staircase leading further up!

There's a bunch of doors here (and also on the floor below), but we'll check that in a moment. For now, let's walk all the way to the other end of the ark.

On the way, we pass by this door. You might recall that at the very beginning of the game, one of the rangers hanging about the ark mentioned to us that he's built a "love nest" for Ken and Linda to live in while they travel! So, that's this room here!

We can go inside...

But other than some storage and a bed, there is actually nothing here--it's completely empty!

So, you might be wondering, what even is the point of this?

Well, I'll tell you! Because this game definitely needs more things to do in it, this is yet another game mechanic we have not encountered so far. There is in fact... a furniture store in this game (!), and you can, well, buy stuff to equip your living quarters on the ark! We probably won't come to this until much later in the game, but actually by sheer coincidence we'll be passing by the said furniture in the next update so we'll get to at least see it even if we don't use it yet!

So, we'll just continue on our way.

Near the far end of the ship, there is a robot...

To enter the room, the male crew member should press their right hand on the panel and the female crew member should press her left hand on the panel next to the door.

I see. Well, that's good to know for the future.

Ah, there's the door robot was talking about. But, as we approach the door...

Linda suddenly collapses in pain!

So I guess, Nek was telling the truth. We aren't going to be getting in there any time soon.

Let's head back one floor below.

As before, it has a bunch of these "shacks". If we go into one of them...

...we find out that that's actually where the pods are located housing the animals we've captured!

If we look at a pod, it shows us the basic stats of the animal stored in it! So it's kind of like a bestiary option, really, except you have to walk around instead of choosing from a menu! For animals not yet caught, of course, there is nothing to see.

Having done this, let's head back out.

It's time finally to visit Ozport!

As you might remember it's located just slightly to the north from Hardia/Ark.

Here we are, it's located at P-10:

Inside, there are the usual facilities (plus some unusual ones, too). Up the escalator is the airport/shopping mall (they actually implemented the escalator fully-it's functional and you can ride on it!), but we'll do that later (i.e. next time). For now we'll explore the western part where the public park is. But first, let's talk to that guy standing in front of the animal shop.

No merchant will be foolish enough to pay money for an egg when you don't know what you're going to get from it. When you don't know what's going to hatch, you can't sell the eggs. So, that's where the "Big Mama" comes into play. Well, just go in and have a look at it yourself.

I have no idea what he's talking about. Eggs? But he said to go in and find out, so let's?

First thing inside is the usual animal trader...

You should know that it's not allowed to take any animals on the escape shuttles. But here is a piece of advice, I will take them for a good price. So just leave them here with me.

That's ok, we'll be taking them with us on the ark anyway. But thanks for the info.

A bit further in is this... thing. It looks like there are eggs being incubated here, so I suppose this must be the "Big Mama" the other guy was talking about? We can find out more from that lady standing in front of the picture of an egg.

We call this machine, the "Big Mama". It can be a dedicated mother to up to 8 animal eggs at a time. If you ever find an egg somewhere, remember it.

And well, yes. We've found ANOTHER thing you can do in this game--growing and hatching the eggs! To be honest, this is also something we'll be exploring in a lot more detail in later scenarios, but not so much in this one most likely.

For now, let's head into the park to the west.

There is a sign at the entrance:

In the park are prohibited the activities which can cause nuisance to other people, such as: playing catch, lighting bonfires, etc.

       -- Ozport Public Park Administration

Good to know. There is also a person sitting on the bench by the entrance.

The summer of the year AMD 1999. It's just a simple sequence of letters and numbers that signifies the end of this planet.

Inside the park, situation is not great, there are definitely vagrant tents and bonfires...

If we go inside the first tent...

Many of us Beastians who prefer a carefree life outdoors don't even have a citizen number. Without one, you are last in line for the escape shuttles. But even if you do get to another planet there are no guarantees you'll have a good life. So I guess, same as now, basically.

If we go to the other tent next to it...

The flowers are valuable because they wither. They are valuable to you who gives them, to her who receives them and of course to me who sells them.

So this is a flower shop, where you can buy flowers! This is again something that we'll be talking more about later since we have no need of it at the moment. But you can see the flowers there in the back that she sells.

There is also this person here standing around by the tents...

Please donate to the less fortunate, sir. It's better to donate to me than to just pretend you're doing something good. A donation to me is a far better thing to do!

So you can give him money, but for right now it doesn't accomplish anything.

And finally the tent in the top right corner.

This one is actually the equipment shop!

Your resistance to sound, light and also the gas based attacks is determined by your headgear! I guess once you get hurt you will learn.

So yeah, you might recall that there were some animal attacks named "<Something> Gas". That is what this is about--your headgear influences your defence/resistance against such attacks. He doesn't really have any useful equipment to buy, so we'll move on.

Our next stop is this counter here...

...which again has something to do with the whole egg thing!

Mysterious, mysterious, mysterious eggs! If you go deep into the cave at this time of year and find an unfamiliar round object, chances are, it's an egg! Look for them in the sand by the water, in the grass, and of course in nests. Just... try not to be seen by the parents, ok?

So this is actually an egg shop. It's true you can find them, but you can also buy some here, if we check out his list of stuff on sale:

So here on sale we have, from the top: smooth, rattling, lumpy, chubby, coarse, thorny, and squishy eggs! But the problem is, at least on the surface of things, you don't really know what you're going to get when it hatches! If you thought it was going to be so easy to just buy an egg of a specific animal, think again! But, as I said, this is something for much later, so for now let's continue to explore the park.

Next to the egg shop, there is one more tent to explore.

This is an inn where you can stay for 1/10 of the price of the airport hotel!

Well, that's cool, but we don't need it for now. What I find more interesting is that this location (as you can see in top left corner of this screenshot) is labeled as "Mysterious Tent". I wonder why that is. Well, I'm sure we'll find out eventually.

In the meantime, we'll move on to the northern side of the park, where there is this lady we can talk to.

It is said that if you carve your name and the name of the person you love on the trunk of this tree, you will end up together. Of course, this is just superstition, but I still come to check the tree from time to time, because I would feel weird if it turned out that someone had carved my name here!

If we go through that gap in the hedge, we can reach the tree (also, what is this, Tokimeki Memorial?).

First, let's read what's written on that sign next to the entrance:

The Red Thread Cedar

There is a legend that if you carve your lover's name on this tree, your love will come true.

It is forbidden to unnecessarily damage this tree, because it can cause it to die. So please don't do it.

       -- Ozport Public Park Administration

Before we check out the tree, there are a couple of people to talk to here. First this lady here, who also seems to be pregnant:

The best conversations are had in the silence of the night. So if you want to know what the other person is really thinking, it's best to go camping! Give it a try.

What this means is, when Ken and Linda are both in the party (like now), you should definitely use the "camp" option since sometimes they will have a conversation you can't otherwise get to hear. We'll definitely do this when we're out in the field, as there are also some quite funny ones to be found!

And then this guy here.

Check out the trunk of the cedar! Usually you'll find a familiar name or two, so you can use that an excuse to make fun of that person!

All right, well, it's time to check out the tree I guess!

Ken examined the trunk of the tree. He found, at waist height, the names of Ken and Linda written inside of a 🎔.

[ I think so... ] / Maybe it was me?
It has to have been me... you couldn't even write propely yet at that time!
But Ken, do you see what this means? I'm starting to remember things bit by bit! Let's look for other stuff written on the tree, it may help me to remember!

I guess let's do that.

Ken examined the trunk of the tree. He found, at chest height, the names of Paul and Linda written inside of a 🎔.

No, I don't remember this at all, so it must be someone else. Let's keep looking.

Ken examined the trunk of the tree. He found, at eye height, the names of Ken and Sachiko written inside of a 🎔.

There is a nurse named Sachiko working in Hospico, cute as a button. But it's probably not her, right?
Let's keep looking and see if your name will turn up again!

Ken examined the trunk of the tree. He could faintly read the names of Anne and Gene written inside of a 🎔.

Maybe our parents on a break at some point before they got married to their current spouses?
Ahahaha, kidding!

This is all very silly, for sure. If we keep looking at the tree...

Ken could find many names on the tree, but none which rang a bell.

This is our cue to leave. But as we do...

It cost all of 2G! But look! I still have it!

I had it made into a pendant when I was 12, because it was so small!
Would you buy me another one today? I'm sure it'll help me remember something!
[ Let's go and look! ] / But it's just 2G?

Sure thing, but that's something that will have to wait for next time, since we've already done a lot today!

And speaking of "a lot", is it just me, or does it seem to anybody else that there is enough material in this game for like 2 or 3 "normal" JRPGs of this time period? I mean it's pretty wild the amount of different things that they bothered to implement for you to be able to do!

Anyway, tell me what you think, but until next time, enjoy another couple of illustrations!

Today, we first start with a high resolution version of the family photo:

And then a drawing of Linda in her ranger uniform: