Part 35: Get a Body BagChapter 30: Get a Body Bag
Welcome to the Zen Zone.
: The competition is about to begin. We've already sold more tickets than expected. In fact, we're sold out! Boy, this year looks like it's gonna be the bloodiest yet! If you don't have a good stomach, you'll be heavin' before the second round!
: I think I have the stomach for it. In fact, our team is in the competition this year! See?
: Heh heh... you must be one crazy freak to enter this competition. These guys play for keeps, and you don't look like the type to stop them. The only trick you're gonna manage is to bleed all over the mat! Talk about an easy win! I gotta find out what kind of odds they're putting on your match!
Well, let's meet our no doubt fearsome opponents, yes?
: We've trained hard for the last week. The coach even made us do push-ups!
Our terrifying, terrifying opponents.
: We're trained by advanced virtual technology. I know we're going to win. We've trained too hard to lose now. Besides, the money you get for winning is worth getting your brains kicked in.
: Do you guys have a promoter?
I- what does that have to do with anything, Ronfar?
: The Armadillo dojo will defeat them without even breaking a sweat.
Oh, since he's in the shot, that guy on the bottom of the screen who isn't in a comedy dojo is the item shop. No, he doesn't sell Angel Tears or Starlights either. Nonetheless, there is a fight coming up where we might need more Dover Nuts, so not totally pointless.
: The whole purpose of our training is to practice defense. If your opponent can't hit you, then he can't win.
Oh yes, and these jokers.
: Then, when they're tired of hitting me, that's when I get 'em.
: With all that armor, why do you need the sword?
: What? Oh! That's my custom back-scratcher.
I'm certain they will be a credible threat and not brushed away within seconds.
: Men will soon learn that women have the power to rule their lives. And if they disagree with us, pow! Right in the kisser! Sniff, Sniff, Snarf!
: Once they have become fixated on you, they'll let you beat them up. Some even say they enjoy it. Sniff, sniff, snarf!
Ah, so it's the "male writer giving an excuse for Powergirl's outfit" reasoning. Gotcha.
: What? You're in this competition, too? Oh know[sic], I just told you our secret. Sniff, sniff, snarf!
: Don't worry, I'm not impressed.
Jean, of course, knows from personal experience that while you can occasionally get a bunch of dudes to beat each other up by shaking your groove thing, and it's funny every time, it's not a reliable tactic.
: What?! You're not a member of the Blue Dragon cult? That's wonderful! Do you think you could take me with you?
: Stay right here. You'll be free to go very soon!
In the back of the tournament arena, there are the houses where they keep the captured kids.
: I never thought I would see you again. But are you really strong enough to beat Lunn?
: Don't worry, I can't lose. This is my destiny.
: I can't stop you, Jean. I understand your reasons for fighting. I just wish I were as strong as you. Perhaps then I could have stopped Lunn, or even escaped like you did. Hurry Jean! You mustn't be late for the fight. I know you'll win.
And you find a lot of kids there that remember her. Now, if you'll allow me to indulge in a little tangent; in the original Japanese version, Jean ran away only one year ago. People would certainly remember who she is. Although this was apparently changed in the remake, and the time line is pretty muddled in the English script anyway. Nonetheless, Jean's still only been away from this life for two or three years at most.
: Hrmph! Your caved-in face tells another story.
: What are you talking about? My face is the proof that I'm a great warrior.
: ...or proof that you make a great punching bag.
: Come on, fight me! Let's fight right now.
: ...maybe later.
Although I'm not sure how this guy fits into it. If he's one of these kids, this conversation is intensely depressing.
Wow, Lunn's given up even pretending to look like a good guy.
: My blood runs hungry like the wolf!
Oh yeah and here's the last group of chumps in the tournament.
: I've gotta relax, my pulse rate is way up there... I think I'm having...
I almost feel sorry that these guys are gonna get their butts whupped hard.
: ...no way! I don't believe my eyes. Is that you, Jean?
: Yes, I've come back to stop the Blue Dragon cult. You'd better decide where your loyalty lies.
: Don't worry, Jean, I believe in you! Now get in there and kick their blue butts!
I'm guessing (the game doesn't do a great job explaining this) this guy is the kids' caretaker. Would explain Jean's... odd ultimatium, anyway.
: They told us you died when you attempted to escape. They made an example of your death!
: They had to tell you that. They knew that if you learne [sic] of my escape, many others would try to escape, too.
...you know, I'm conflicted here. On the one hand, I'd like to just leave this dialogue exchange just as a neat bit of plot detail. On the other... Yes, that glaring spelling error is in the game. Urgh.
: They... beat me.... bad that I... don't have any... feeling in... my legs.
: Those bastards will pay for this! Don't worry kid, I'll beat them into custard!
But fuck it, whatever. I don't know about you, but I'm feelin' properly motivated. Let's go taunt our opposition.
: And what's better is that these cretins are no match for our superior skill! Like little lambs to the slaughter... he he he... We're number one! We're number one!
I don't really think it's fair to call yourself the cream of the crop when you only compete against the comedy dojos.
: Did you claw your way out just to fight me? I'm flattered.
: Don't be. I came here to stop you from corrupting the minds of any more innocent children. I will fight until my last breath to stop your wicked cult.
: My, my, I don't think I've ever seen you so focused. You must be quite serious in your intent, foolish girl. My Blue Dragon Cult will dominate this competition. I have trained each and everyone one of them personally. In order for you to fight me, you must first defeat my followers. And in that endeavor, I expect you to fail miserably! Ha ha ha!
: Lunn, I give you my word. I will not rest until I defeat you. I will defeat your followers. And then, I'm coming for you!
Let's do this shit! Sadly, since this is a tournament and all, we'll have to go through the scrubs first.
: Good. Now which three from your group will be fighting?
: I will be the team leader. Hiro will be second... that is, if you would like to fight with me, Hiro.
Like you even need to ask.
: Great! I knew you would. And the last one will be...
: Jean, you don't have to ask. I know as the only guy left you have to choose me.
...or, maybe, as the only healer she'd have to choose you, fuckwit.
: Don't you know that women are just as good as men these days?
: Okey dokey... fine then! Lemina, why don't you take my place.
: Ha! Just watch me kick their mega-sorry butts!
: ...but you do know that there's no money in it for you, don't you?
: ...Well, Jean, good luck. I'll stand right over there and cheer for all of you!
It kinda amuses me that Lucia wasn't even in this discussion. Lucia: does not give a shit about kung-fu drama.
: I don't think we'll have any trouble in this first round. Here we go!
So who's our first batch of chumps?
It's not actually immediately obvious unless you talked to the guy announcing the line-up (which I decided not to show, because I wanted it to be a surprise) but these are the virtual training dudes. Despite what you may think, they're not necessarily chumps.
Fortunately that's not their normal attack, but still nasty for a special move. They're fast, too, so have Ronfar always be reading a Calm Litany.
Hiro's Poe Sword, as normal, decimates these guys readily. So how does Jean's Haduken stack up.
Not... great. Not a one-hit-kill, although it's better than her dances, at least.
: Just wait a while...
: Whew! What the heck is going on up there?!
: You should never have challenged us, weaklings! Take this!"
: Ha ha ha... what a pathetic waste of skin! They deserved to be terminated! Soon, all will know the strength of the Blue Dragon cult! We will reign supreme over this tournament!
: I... I can't believe what I just witnessed! It was sick! The fight was already over and they just... well... you know...
Kept making screen flash red?
: The karate of the Blue Dragon Cult is nothing but evil. There is no mercy shown to opponents. It must be stopped at any cost.
The game shows you some mercy in that you have breaks in-between fights. You can save, heal (there's conveniently a statue of Althena in the arena!), and chat.
: I just love the color of blood. It's just sooo... red! Just make sure that during your match you try to get in at least one face-crush! No one likes a boring match! Blood, blood, blood!
...I think this man has been doing this job for far too long.
: Curse you technology! Curse you!
I'm not sure why, when given access to great technology, one's thought process goes to "let's use video games to train" rather than, "holy shit let's bring rocket launchers!" Is it against the rules? ...are there really even rules?
: I guess we should've practiced how to punch.
See, this why you don't get fighting lessons from the Simpsons. (although if he had seen the whole episode, Homer loses in the end anyway, so... go ahead and get fighting lessons from the Simpsons?)
: If I were you, I'd be very afraid. Get out of your match while you still can.
: Don't worry, I've no intention of losing.
Although they didn't actually kill these guys, which one would have surmised from the dialogue earlier. Admittedly, death of some comic relief characters doesn't fit with the game's tone, but still. Makes the Blue Dragon Karate dudes look less like soulless killers and more like just petty dickbags... which they are. Hm. Maybe it's more appropriate than I thought.
: That's why they don't know what to do when we fight them. It's an easy win. Our curves turn 'em on, and we turn 'em out! Sniff, sniff, snarf!
...so, uh, what's your plan if your opponent is gayer than a handbag full of rainbows? Or female (and straight)?
: I'm gonna make mincemeat outta my opponents! And... I love mincemeat.
Yeah, whatever buddy. I'm gettin' itchy; let's plow through the next disposable batch.
So round two is... frankly less threatening than round one. They're slower than the cyber ninjas and they don't do a lot of damage. Honestly, I mostly dicked around a lot. By the way, Jean can still totally use her dance moves as karate girl.
It's a nice touch.
: You are now qualified to compete in the final match. Your opponent is the clan of the Blue Dragon cult.
Finally, time to-
: Be careful, Hiro! These guys are dangerous! You saw what they did earlier!
...yeah, thanks Nall.
: Their eyes look so... so... dead! Sniff, sniff, snarf!
Oh, and they fought the bunny girls this time 'round. And surprise, the "distract your male opponent with sexiness" is bullshit.
: Now our dojo has been dishonored!
: You may act like an animal, but you still cry like a baby!
Also, you fight like a baby.
The next match is with the best of my clan. And remember, once you are lying on the mat drained of power, do not beg for mercy. My clan has been trained to ignore the anguished pleas of the damned.
: I know your evil ways, Lunn. But this time, there will be no anguish on my part. I will win this next match. And then, I'm going for you.
Let's do this.
: Then let the final battle begin!
: Hiro, Ronfar, these guys don't mess around. They're cold-blooded killers. Don't lower your guard for even a second! Remember what I've taught you, and follow my lead!
The hype these guys built up isn't entirely unjustified. These guys have a respectable 706 HP, so there won't be any OHKOs.
Their attacks ain't nothing to sneeze at either. The first screen is their special, and the second is their normal attack, which does about 40 HP. That sounds like it's not so bad, but they have two attacks, and that was against the character with the highest defense.
You want to focus on one of them at a time, maybe bust out a Comet Tail if they get close enough together (they usually don't). And hope you get lucky with the random counterattacks.
Oh yeah, Jean's new armor occasionally triggers a counter. Not bad.
But yeah, as long as they don't take out Ronfar, and you make sure to take them out one by one, this is a perfectly manageable fight.
Wow, for a mini boss fight they kinda give a crap reward.
: That was incredible! The winners are the clan of Jean's dojo!
: Ha! I knew you'd kick their blue bottoms! I wasn't worried for a second!
: What's this 'us,' Ruby? All you did was sit on your pink bottom and watch.
: I'm sorry. Did anyone hear that? I could've sworn I heard some annoying person talking. Hm... maybe it was just my imagination.
Considering that I don't know if we could have won that fight without Ron, I think he gets to call you out on that.
Well, now here comes the fun part.
: But she has the black mist of revenge in her eyes. You're a fool for returning, Jean.
: I am not here for revenge. I've come to right a wrong that has slipped my grasp. Until now. Lunn, your misuse of karate must stop... now!
Who's up for some pre-fight chatter?
: Mah, Jean. The martial arts are nothing more than an efficient way to terminate opposers. Power is not a reward! It's a jewel to be snatched from the weak and foolish! As one of my former students, you should know this better than anyone else. You always were the bright one...
: The only way to defeat me is to compromise your principles by using my karate of death. Join me again Jean. I know that's what you want more than anything! Mwha ha ha!
: You're wrong, Lunn! Your worm-infested heart hides the truth from your eyes! Power grows when spread amongst the many, and perishes when hoarded by a few! I intend to show you the power of free will by delivering a crush blow to you in the tournament!
...give me a moment for my inner child to fist pump.
: And you will free all the children you yet hold under your spell.
: Ha ha ha! I find it amusing that you are even entertaining the hope of winning. This match is a match to the death. There can be only one winner. And, when I win, I will kill all your associates, too. When you challenge me, you agree to these terms.
Man, iTunes terms of service have gotten severe.
: It's your choice, little one.
You actually have a choice at this point. I'd honestly recommend saying "no," then dropping a quick save. You miiight die in this upcoming fight, and you probably don't want to sit through that bit of dialogue each time you want to retry.
But fuck that man I'm ready to rock.
: I know I can win, but I need to know that you all agree that I should fight. After all, if I lose, Lunn has vowed to kill all of you, too.
: Go for it, Jean! I know you have the skill to beat this guy into a pile of mega-waste!
: Yeah, Jean. We all believe in you. In fact, I found a place that gave me 10 to 1 odds of you winning. I'm gonna make a killing!
: You... bet on...?! Uh... thanks Ronfar. That bet is the highest vote of confidence you could have given me.
: Jean, you must fight well. The entire future of this world rests on this battle. If we do not get the Blue Dragon Aura, we cannot complete my quest. And all will be lost.
Aw, how nice. Lucia got some lines.
: Don't worry Lucia. I've waited all my life for this moment. It's strange. I've dreamt of this moment for so long, I'm not even afraid. The need to stop Lunn once and for all has consumed me. I will not fail. Okay, Lunn! It's just you and me, now. Get in the ring!
So we've finally got to our climatic showdown. So... Lunn is an interesting battle. It can be a huge roadblock if you don't know what you're doing, especially in this version.
Now Lunn actually doesn't do that much damage, although since this is a solo battle keeping your HP up is a challenge. A Heal Ring can help, but make sure Jean comes into this fight with a fair amount of Dover Nuts and some Starlights.
But this. This is the dick move. When he's holding his hands on his hips, he does this little move:
This makes him invisible and invincible to your attacks. You can't even target him. You can use Aura Wave, since the target zone is based around the character rather than the enemy, but it won't hit anything.
But Lunn can certainly get you with his telekinesis punch.
It's pretty nasty. So. What do you do to counteract it?
Dopple Dance. When he turns invisible, Jean's dopple will seek him out.
And voila, he's visible! As far as I can tell, nothing in the game tells you that you can do that. Moreover, since you need to put MExp into Jean's Dance, you could potentially walk into this fight with no MExp put into Dance. Have fun grinding MExp!
Other than his invisible telekinesis punch, what else does he do? Well, when he's starts flaming (immature gay joke optional) he'll bust out his most damaging attack.
Because of this, it's a good idea to make sure you're at 140 HP or higher at all times.
Other than the invisibility bullshit, it's a pretty straightforward fight. It's mostly a question of preparation. Is Jean's level high enough? If she's low leveled, does she have a Shiro Tail on to make sure she always goes first? Does she have Dopple Dance? What are the tells for his attacks? Things like that.
Also I learned don't bother using Hoduken in this fight. Jean's regular attacks add up to a little over 300 damage a round, which exceeds Hoduken's 280 or so. Also, it doesn't take MP, so you can save MP for White Dragon Protect or Recovery Litany if you want to use those, and you have a chance for crits.
And for some odd reason, it does extra damage when Lunn's prepping Dragon Gale.
This might explain why I beat him in seven rounds.
Seriously. Seven. That's all it took. I counted it. Lunn gets another attack called Viper that I never saw because the battle was simply over too quickly. I'll be honest with you; I was legit gobsmacked when that happened. I had prepared for a drawn out slugfest, but I ended up using just one Dover Nut.
Because Jean is the fucking bomb. And don't you ever forget it.
: This makes... no sense... I... am... the master! We share the knowledge of Blue Dragon Karate, but yours is somehow different.
: I fight, not to kill, but to conquer. My Blue Dragon karate is never used aggressively. Once I believe in the power of good within my soul, I knew I could never be overcome by evil again. Your power draws from the well of darkness and corruption. It will always be overcome by the power of good.
: You have proven the power that can be attained when the mind and heart are united. When that happens, nothing is insurmountable... ...so, now you will spare my life, even though I was intent on ending yours. Jean, you truly have become the master. I am humbled before you.
"Okay, kung-fu drama, whatever, we got shit to do buddy."
: Certainly. Here, take it. I have no use for it any longer.
: The sanctuary of the Blue Dragon is located in a cave north of here. However, you can't reach it by heading directly north. Follow the river back to Horam, then head south and east. The river will then lead you north. I know that you will find success in your quest. Jean, my new training will be based on the knowledge that you imparted to me. You have my word on that.
: When I started, karate was a way to defend myself. I enjoyed the peace of mind practice brought, and I no longer feared anyone. However, I forgot that original peace, and began to crave power. That's when I sold my soul to Zophar. I began to teach Blue Dragon karate, twisted for my own selfish purposes. This defeat has shown me the original way once again. I am forever in your debt. Please... forgive me.
She may be awesome, but she ain't Saint Jean. So, uh, yeah. Kinda asking for a lot, there.
But now we've both gotten the Aura and humbled Lunn's sorry ass. A win/win.
: I was amazed at how quickly you put us away. How do you train? Do you get into bar fights to practice? You gotta have some killer regimen to have defeated us!
: No, you just suck. Plain and simple. It's really quite pathetic, actually. Your wives must be really, really embarrassed.
Geez, Ruby. Gonna give 'em a wedgie and steal their lunch money next?
: Say Goldilocks, do you want to join us?
: Geez, you'd have to pay me a ton of silver to dress like that.
: I'd pay you to dress like that.
: I should have expected a comment like that from you, Ronfar!
: Don't be so uptight, Lemina. I'd pay to see you dress like that, too. He he he...
Ruby, you are a cruel bitch.
: If there's anything that I can do for you, just let me know.
: Please, take care of these kids. I still have one more fight left.
More importantly than kicking Lunn's teeth in, we saved the kids!
Well, I mean, I assume Lunn will let them go. I mean, they're still here and technically once we leave-
: Thank the maker! I... I... love you guys!
Look, we saved the kids, all right?
: Congratulations! This is so grand! I can't wait to get out of this place and go home. I just... I just hope my parents haven't forgotten about me.
: The first thing I'm gonna do when I get home is go shopping... no wait, maybe I'll go out to eat first... no wait...
: Don't worry, you'll have time to do all those things.
Never have I gone so fast from to
: I hope you beat the crap out of them.
: I did worse than that! Just wait until you see...
We kicked 'em where it hurt: the ego.
See, Lunn, there's your problem. You shouldn't have recruited your super badass martial arts disciplines from Reddit.
: You know, it really wasn't that bloody this year. Or maybe I'm getting desensitized to it.
: You idiot! If you like the sight of blood so much, why don't you spill a little of your own?
: What a novel idea. I didn't even think of that! <whack><slam><bam> Heh heh heh, I just gave myself a bloody nose! Look! Look at the blood! Woooww!
: ...whew! This guy needs some serious help!
...that's understanding it a bit.
: I'm thinking.... sad-o-mas-o-chist. Big time! Let's get out of here before he gets any new bloody ideas!
That's a good idea Ruby.
: I've hit myself so many times in the head that I have a headache. But man! Can my head bleed! It was spewing like old faithful! Talk about cool!
A very good one.
So it's already time for another Dragon Cave! Wow, we're banging these out pretty quickly, actually. But yeah, next time Blue Dragon Cave.