The Let's Play Archive

Lobotomy Corporation

by TeeQueue

Part 64: Day 29 - Gameplay

Day 29: Gameplay

Music: neutral 2

Hey, manager. Remember those vents Hod used before?

I do, yes.

I hooked the regenerators up to them. We lose some efficiency, but I can pump healing to the entire facility now.

That sounds remarkably useful. Thank you, Netzach.

Don't get too used to it. I'm pretty much out of ideas at this point.

Remarkably useful is an understatement. This upgrade makes it so that our Agents will get healing no matter where they are, including in the middle of fights.

New research's done, manager. Enjoy~

We take the SP bullets next. Netzach's new upgrade makes them even less appealing, but it's better to have them than not.

The state of the facility.

Well… this one came out of nowhere, if I'm being honest.

You never were particularly good at reading others, X.

It didn't help that he was always so serious. Ah, well. Let's see what he has in store for us.

Music: Second Trumpet

What the-?

Manager. Your uniform is still disheveled.

Still on about that, huh? Look, if it'll make you feel better, I'll straighten my tie.

This isn't the time for jokes, manager. Your job is to manage the Abnormalities. If you would do it properly, I wouldn't need to wipe the record clean so often.

That is so not my fault. The clerks are lemmings, they just-

I've had enough of your excuses. It's time. Remember to follow the protocols… if you ever knew them in the first place, Manager.

All Levels posted:

What was I really looking at all this time?

This impenetrable darkness is inexplicably lonely.

You will not be able to discern anything properly.

Level 1 posted:

What did we do wrong?

Are we not even allowed to fall into despair?

Oh, hey manager. Nice digs.

D.A.D.? I admit, I was wondering when you'd show up.

Felt like being a little bit fashionably late. So, any idea what the boss is doing?

Oh, I have an inkling.

You could see it in our previous shots as well, but our interface is blurred out all of a sudden. It still works properly, but seeing specifics is impossible today.

This applies to every part of our interface, making it impossible to read Agent stats, see their names, or even properly read information about the Abnormality work orders. It even blanks out the names on the lifebars above the Agents so we can't tell them apart that way. This is a problem enough, but...

Oh… this isn't good.

Oh dear.

The Abnormality Information screen also counts as part of the interface! :stonklol:

The skill that Yesod is testing is pretty obvious: It's a test of how well we know our facility. Managers who remember how their Abnormalities work and what their important workers look like in the broadest terms will be better able to handle this Suppression than ones who are constantly referring back to the details pages or don't pay attention to anything other than Agent names. This is actually part of why being able to change our Agents' appearances is technically a buff-we have some incredibly distinctive characters who will stick out even under this pixelated mess, which gives us an advantage.

Not that we really need it. :getin:

Huh… comms are down, and the CCTV's on the fritz, but that's about it.

Well, it is Yesod.

He's not the sort to do anything particularly terrible, is he?

Look at them, manager. They all simply want to last through the day.

I see now. In this department, I have transformed. I am more. I am greater. I am now… a Safer Sephiroth.

HAHAHA! Splendid! Let's see what you can do today!

What I can do is go on break. Back in a bit.

Countless employees, living their lives in hopes of staying in the safety of a Nest.

Anyone want to hang out after work? I've been working on a campaign for a while and I think I've got it down pat.

Eh, why not?

I call the exploding robot doppelganger! ...No reason why.

They have hopes. Dreams. Plans.

My infiltration yesterday was a resounding success! Now I should be able to accomplish the next phase of my plan: stealing the good stuff from the communal fridge! Muahahaha!!

And what do we offer them in return?

Today seems so normal. If the comms weren't down, I wouldn't be able to tell anything's wrong at all.

I preferred two days agoo… that was muuch more iinteresting.

I'll take 'normal but slightly annoying' over something like that any day.

Just don't let your guards down. The others got worse before they got better, there's no telling what's coming now.

Death. Suffering. And in the end, an oblivion so complete that even their name is wiped from memory.

I've done what I can to keep everyone alive, Yesod. That's why they're able to talk so carefreely, the way they do.

Such an egocentric outlook. Do you think the agents were the only people in this facility? Oh, but that's right. Clerks don't count.

He's got a point there, Manager.

Well… it's not like I can give them orders. They just sort of wander off monster-shaped cliffs.

Did you know we've had four Epsilon11s? The first was murdered by a Green Noon's buzzsaw. The second met their end to Scarecrow. The third burned alive when you decided to face the Firebird. The one in Training today is the fourth. The odds are, they'll also die today. Yet again, I'll be ordered to remove the records of them. They'll exist only in my memory, as Morty, as Aurora, as BongBong, as Joshua. Even then, only for as long as I can remember the name… Do you know how many dead have been forgotten? How much knowledge has come from their deaths, built on the corpses of those who don't exist anymore?


But no. They don't count. They don't count! They don't count! Is it any wonder that I feel despair in a place like this?

Um… Any insight here, D.A.D.?

This is pretty clearly your mess, kiddo. I'm not cleaning it up for you.

Then why are you here?

To make sure you do clean it up. You're grounded until then.

...Fine. I'll try.

Here's our new Abnormality, though we'll get a better picture tomorrow. It's basically a bomb shelter of some sort. We won't be poking at it, since we're in a hurry. Netzach's new powerup gives us an interesting way to handle working under our relatively strict time limit: we have our Agents position themselves in the hallways in front of the Abnormality they'll be working. This will minimize travel time and let us finish the day quickly, and it also will blunt the worst of Yesod's tricks as we go through the day.

With that done, we can queue up a whole lot of works to push things forward. It's important to set things up now, while things are still relatively visible...

Music: untitled9877645623413123325

...because in a Core Suppression, it can always get worse. There are two Meltdowns on this screen. The one in Welfare is easy enough, but can you find the other one?

Level 2 posted:

To tell you the truth, it’s just that I did not want to witness any more deaths.

We’ve created monsters that should never have been in this world. This sin can never be forgotten.

Can you really look at what we've wrought here and call yourself a good person? We send people to their deaths against monstrous beings, which we created for no reason other than power.

I can't… say that's completely true yet. I think there might be something else we were after.

Even then, is it worth all this? A land where we cannot even remember our dead?

If that's all that it's about, I can-

Don't bother. If you were to try and change this immutable fact of this place, Angela would remove you. It's the same for me, or any of us.

Then you're talking about a problem I can't fix. If I can't fix it, what am I supposed to do with it?

That's why I'm asking you why you did all of this. Are you laughing at everyone? Is this one of your jokes?

It was on Yin. One of the problems of the fidelity going down is that it becomes harder to see things while zoomed out, which effectively lowers our play area. This makes larger micromanagement difficult. Luckily, our hallway strategy from earlier makes this almost entirely a nonissue. Also, if we check the top-right we can see that an Ordeal is coming and that it's a Crimson. Based on the timing, we know we're facing a Crimson Dawn today.

You say that, but I don't remember a thing about doing any of this. All I have is… flashes. They seem to predate this company, even.

So you don't even have a reason, anymore.

I'm not even entirely sure it was my reason to have in the first place, Yesod.

Anyways, with our Agents set up like this all we have to do to work a specific Abnormality is click-drag over the entire hallway. This will select the Agent waiting in it no matter where they're at. Once done, we just right-click on the Abnormality we want them to work, and…

Voila. They're the only one to show up in the work order information for that Abnormality. This keeps us from having to deal with a lot of the guesswork. The Middle layer has some hallways where we may need 2 people to work the two Abnormalities inside of them, so the best way to deal with that is to use contrasting colors (like Tenebrais/Credentia's red and black) or just have both people be able to work with either Abnormality (like SeyserKoze and Twee in Welfare, either one can work either Little Prince or the mystery shark). We could also just slowly work with Agents who we can verify are our strongest, of course, but I'm on a timer so I can't do that today. :v:

Can't tell me why you've done all of this… can't put a stop to it either. You're useless, manager.

Haha… yeah. Guilty as charged.

Crimson Dawn, right on schedule.

Level 3 posted:

You should know that all the information you just mindlessly skimmed through was from somebody’s dire sacrifice.

I am the head of the Information Team. I take great pride in my department and team for obtaining information and expunging it exactly as ordered.

That isn't funny, manager.


It was a little funny. :shrug:

We're playing with lives here. There's no room for anything but our best work. If you don't know what you're doing, it's bad for everyone.

Well… it's very hard to see anything, and I almost mistook that thing next to the vaguely Talow-shaped blur to be a clown before I realized it was probably Punishing Bird. Could we like, fix the cameras so I can know what I'm doing?

Consider it penance for profiting from the work of the dead even as you make jokes at their expense.

...yeah, ok, so that's a no, then. Great.

Our hallway strategy is actually very effective against Crimson Dawns in particular, as they spawn into hallways with Agents waiting to club them to death. This one in Welfare survives the longest since both Agents here are currently working, but Twee finishes and takes care of it before long.

Well… we got through that easy enough.

With that done, it's time to queue up more works until...

Hmph. We still lost clerks in the explosions.

We always lose clerks. That's why I say-

Music: Faded


Level 4 posted:

You are unfit to be the manager if you cannot even remember the simplest rules.

Did you not see my marred, rotting flesh, covered in boils and oozing with pus?

There are 5 meltdowns in this picture. Hint: They're all in Welfare and Central, because everywhere else is immune to them. Answer: Mystery Shark, Little Prince, Judgment Bird, The Firebird, Yang.

Yeesh, I can't see anything.

That does seem to be a recurring issue with you, manager.

...hey. I am still your boss, y'know.

Then you could try acting the part.

Yeah… but I got nothing. There's nothing I can do for him. He's not talking nonsense, it's not like he's fighting me so much as the circumstances, and with things as they are... I just don't know how to approach the guy.

Hm… Ah, I might know. You know, that's a tasty-looking cactus you have there. It looks positively succulent. this really the time for a bad pun? :what:

There's always time for a bad pun. :mmmhmm: But it's a lot like Yesod, if you think about it.

...Prickly on the outside, but full of water?

Something like that. You know, we love the ol' mummy in our department even if he's super strict. It's because he cares. But he never admits to it.

...did you just call me a 'mummy?'

He doesn't, does he?

Think you can handle it from here, manager?

...No idea. Gotta try, though.

Much like Netzach, once we've got the basic idea of the day down there's not any other curveballs that come. Visibility gets worse and there's a couple scroll lines now, but there aren't any other hidden tricks to mess up our day.

Look, Yesod, I'm not exactly a psychologist or anything…

That much is clear.

But, have you considered that those issues you said only you had might be related to your mental state?

...It had occurred to me. What does that have to do with this?

Look… I'm just going to lay it out here: I can't do anything for you. The overwhelming consensus is that this place is hell, and we're all stuck here. Me, too.

Then what was even the point of all of this? What am I supposed to do with all of this despair I feel every time another one of our clerks dies?

You could try saying they don't count?


Yikes, six layers of distortion and I could still feel that glare. Fine, then. It's how I deal, but it's not for everyone. Maybe… Just let yourself feel sad? You don't really let yourself feel things, and that's probably not healthy.

What would you know of health?

Not a lot… but bottling it up can't be good for you.

Level 5 posted:

Now I see; I have been wallowing in despair, for such a long time.

I tried to pretend that everything was fine, but in reality, it never was. I was dying on the inside.

Seven meltdowns this time, but not on anything dangerous. We're in cleanup mode-the next Ordeal won't hit before we've finished, and all our main rooms are empty anyways.

Hmph. Now that you mention it… I don't remember the last time I wasn't miserable. I've been containing it for so long...

Yeah, that's not good. It's okay to just openly feel like crap sometimes, I think. So long as it doesn't consume us, like this has you. Sorry I can't be any more useful than that.

I'll take your words under advisement.

You know, I noticed all you did today was mess with me. The agents are untouched, and this kind of interference won't even cause any 'accidents' like Malkuth's did unless I get completely careless. You really are nice, aren't you?

I'm Yesod the Viper. The most ruthless Sephirah in this entire company.

The most ruthless Sephirah to ever create a challenge designed to keep anyone from getting hurt. I don't hate that.

Hmph. It seems you won't listen to anything I say. You can go ahead and finish this farce, manager.

If you insist, Yesod. Just keep an eye out for that Violet Noon.

...wait, what Noon?

When we push forward, Ordeals and meltdowns will still spawn as normal. This can result in taking deaths in the last few seconds of the day after we lose control-and these deaths do count-so be careful!

So I was the one who couldn’t see a single step ahead…

Oh that's not… that's not ideal. No. That's… this is bad. Is this bad? This feels bad.

He'll be fine. There's nobody in our department who couldn't handle an obelisk or two to the face.

That's a little nuts. So… am I ungrounded?

Mmhmm. You pass. This time.

Cool. Thanks for the thing about the cactus. It got me out of a prickly situation.

So it's bad pun time now, eh? :mmmhmm:

Yeah. Though while we're here… you think you could maybe tell me what D.A.D. stands for?

Oh that? It's pretty simple.

So... what is it?

D.A.D.. Always D.A.D..

............get out of my office.

Just trying to needle you, manager. :mmmhmm:


Music: never frozen bottom flows
Once more you have succeeded.

Get repairs down to Yesod. I think he might have taken a Violet Noon to the noggin.

...Perhaps I should revise my assessment?

Any victory we walk away from is a win in my book. Just make sure he gets fixed, I don't want to have to replace him after everything we've done.

Of course, X. Now…

The Abnormalities, right? Let's see them.

O-01-64: "...Sadness says: 'Begone, pass away!' But greed seeks eternity-seeks deep, deep eternity."
O-02-40: A month later, we came to this conclusion: There was no such "beast" in the forest.
F-05-52: Somewhere in the distance, you can hear seagulls.

Okay, -52 is still a ZAYIN and is thus worthless at this point, -64 is a WAW that's good at Instinct training and has an ALEPH weapon but escapes a lot, yeah yeah that's cool and all but I do not care about any of that today.

:frogsiren: -40 is a Bird. All hands on deck. :frogsiren:

Next time, on Lobotomy Corporation: Yesod comes to.

VIDEO: Yesod Core Suppression