The Let's Play Archive

Live A Live

by Yapping Eevee

Part 16: This stealth is an art.

Despite an initial surge of Mecha votes, the Ninja party got into full swing once a popular name was suggested. So let’s take a look at a chapter that hopefully won’t be too hard to explain.


It was a dark and stormy night… Okay, maybe that’s a bit too cliché.

Let’s just take a look at the obvious villain inside.

A flame flickers into existence before something else trundles in. It makes a rather loud rumbling sound as it moves.

And then a pentagram just appears out of nowhere. This is a bizarre evil council you’ve got going here.

How are things progressing?

We hit a couple of snags, but we did finally manage to capture the target.

Hah! At last, I have him in my custody. What else is there to report?

Our mechanical friend is nearly complete. We simply need to strip off the shell and give him a nice new finish. The work will commence tomorrow at daybreak.


Please allow me to handle the spirits. I’ve not had fresh human in ages…!

As you wish. I can feel it… the world is slowly slipping back towards the brink of total war…



I see… So, you were unable to complete your mission.

I will try again!!

If you were to be killed, what would become of the Enma shinobi? I myself would go, but these old bones don’t move quite as freely as they used to…

But, my lord…

Can we send no one else…?

... I am loath to delegate a top secret mission of such grave importance to any other. Except, perhaps…

The man I have in mind has not yet finished training, but he shows incredible promise. He is already better than many of our finest. He is likely our best bet.

Ahah! What is this man’s name?

He is called…

The sad thing is that I’m sure blue-hedgehog-dressed-as-ninja artwork already exists, probably on DeviantArt.

I think the honorific might improve this suggestion, honestly.

Bring him here. Immediately!

Actually, sir, he has been with us this entire time…

Even if you are a shinobi in training, I don’t think you should spy on your own lord’s secret meetings. That seems like it should be grounds for disembowelment or something.

Ah, Sonic-maru! Well then. I am sending you on a mission of grave import.

We haven’t been given a proper briefing, so let’s hear the whole spiel.

It is one of the many families who seek to take advantage of our nation’s chaos, with the ultimate goal of deposing the Tokugawa shogunate. Ode Iou is holding a political prisoner in his castle.

You might become as the shadows, silent as the stars… Or you could simply kill everyone who sees you. However! Whichever path you take, none must be aware of your presence. Do I make myself clear?

Crystal, sir.

...Make up your mind.

Allow me to teach you my secret art…

Press the Y button when you are being pursued by the enemy… So long as the button is held, you will become one with your surroundings. None shall be able to see you. I am confident that you will master it with little difficulty.


The fate of this realm may very well be in your hands.


The feudal times of ancient Japan are drawing to a close. As the era draws to a close, the future has become fearful and uncertain for many. And yet, there still remain those whose silent acts can change history’s course…


Is it life that awaits him in Ode Iou’s sprawling castle…?



Welcome to one of the more complicated chapters, folks. And please do listen to both those tracks; the music’s excellent as usual.

Sonic-maru has quite a task ahead of him, especially since he starts with so little gear and less than a hundred health.

We do have this cloak though, which is essential for those wishing to stealth their way through this chapter. Enemies can actually wander right through Sonic while he’s hiding.

Stealth is not the name of the game today, though. There is a reward for not killing a single person, but we can also get that another way. Sooo…

Time to get murdering!

The enemies in this chapter each have individual names, but all those with one sprite have the same stats and moveset. You will also encounter these guards in order; if I had fought a different set first, they would have been Yataro and Gonsuke.

Sonic-maru starts with a small selection of techniques, but will gain one with every level until he hits 14. Shinobi Slash is our basic attack, and Cross Slice hits all eight spaces around Sonic.

Blazing Butterfly looks pretty cool, but Sonic is in real danger of giving himself a 24-damage hotfoot with this. It’s a bit situational.

Oh, good. Sonic is kind enough to keep score for those players who feel like they really need to kill all 100 people here. There’s no reward for doing so, but if you want to challenge yourself, go nuts.

Oh, and walking to the front door will prompt you to Game Over yourself. We’ll take a look at that another time; we’ve only just gotten to the gameplay, so let’s explore.

Stealthy folks will need to trigger this fight, run from it and dash through the door afterward before the guards can re-engage. Get used to doing that a lot if you’re being a pacifist.

As is, Senta and Gonshichi get slaughtered.

Just inside, we get to spy on some of Ode’s men.

What’s the current password?

Ah-ha, good to know! Pacifists want to know the password to bypass guards; murderers need to know it once to get a kill.

Oh, someone done fucked up.

Hah! Serves him right. With this password system in place, we will easily be able to tell friend from foe. Now, get to your posts!!


And everyone files out of the hallway, having finished providing us some valuable new intel.

First order of business: take the right hand door and murder Sanji.

This brings us to level 3, and nets Sonic some new armour from the nearby chest. You can also see that Sonic gains power and IQ in about equal measure, making him capable of being geared up for either stat depending on what you require.

In the centre room, there’s nothing but the password instructor.

Ima Ikuzo gets to help us demonstrate our new knockback tech as well, which has the added effect of laying down some weak water fields.

Oh, a random drop. We wouldn’t normally get one of these for a little while yet, but hey.

Tiny stat boosts are better than nothing. (Man, this is the most like a normal RPG things have been in a while, haven’t they?)

Yeah, yeah. The last five guys thought exactly the same thing.

Tsukuba Ichiro would be rather threatening if we didn’t have first-turn advantage, since we can both kill each other in about two hits.

In the room below, a guard is chasing a woman around. This brings us to the most important rule of this run: Whether you are a pacifist or a slaughterer, do not kill any women (yet).

Thankfully, ladies will actually give you a choice whether or not to follow through if you should accidentally interact with them. As is, we murder Gonpachi and leave her alone.

Now that we’re done with the first building, we can head out into the courtyard where two more blue-haired ronin await. Hayada Jiro and Nittai Saburo get whacked to bring Sonic to level 4.

Oh, and the bell rings. This means the password is no longer River, but something else.

This pair of clowns is our first password check, but before we deal with that…

There’s someone hiding under the awning over here.

Echizenya is a merchant, and they’re one of the chump enemies of the chapter. Funny spritework though.

Back over at the password check, we know that River is no longer the password, and that one guy got busted for saying Potato. So you could reasonably be expected to guess that Origin is the correct answer, not their boss’ name.

Answering correctly means that you no longer get to fight these dudes, soooo… Sukeroku and Kinji.

At least they let Sonic show off his new flame magic. Sorry, ninpou.

The interior of this second building has Waruhoso Shiro wandering around, as well as four doors. One of them leads to another hallway with three more doors. Things are about to get a tiny bit complicated…

For starters, we’re going to go into the second door from the right and kill the ronin Musashibi Goro, but not the samurai in orange. This is important.

We can leave this other double door alone, as it leads to a room full of women and nothing else. Instead, we’re moving into the second hallway.

The guarded room has nothing for us right now, but we can kill the guard by getting the password wrong again. (Aoyama Rokuro joins his buddies in an early grave.)

Next, into the middle room in this hallway…

And through a hidden door! The guy there is a bit too strong for us right now, so he gets to live a minute longer.

We end up in the attic, able to grab this treasure chest.

And with all our equipment slots filled, I think this would be a good time to cut the update off. Join us next time as Sonic-maru explores more of the castle in hopes of finding the political prisoner.

...Oh, and this is why people were voting for him to be named Sonic.