The Let's Play Archive

Mana Khemia: Alchemists of Al-Revis

by Feinne

Part 12: I Dig This Course

We had a class with Mr. Dior today.

Video- “Minerology”

Watch the Class

I, uh, think it was on metals or something.

Students: Thank you teacher.
Minerology is literally, a study on minerals.
Minerals, next to plants, are a necessary ingredient for alchemy…
And are mostly used for weapons, armor, and metal based item syntheses.
The mineral, metal, or crystal itself must be taken from natural rock…
His lecture is kinda long… He talks kinda slowly too…
Yeah… *yawn * I’m getting sleepy…
In origin, minerals correspond to the astrology of alchemy…
The Earth, Moon, Mercury, Mars… Speaking of Mars, I have a funny story.
It was back when I was still a young apprentice alchemist…

I have no idea what happened at that point because I was out like a light.

Students: Y-yes!?
Indeed, good answer. Then, let’s have you actually go gather some metal ore.
Head over to the entrance of the Mana Ruins now.

Flay and Pamela showed up along with us, it seems Tony and Renee weren’t kidding that it was completely allowed and it’s not their fault Flay was being a jerk.

Hm? You got a problem with me being here?
No, not a problem, just…
Well, let’s just say… I felt the scent of battle.
That’s so stupid… I bet you just got bored.
And Pamela, too… You’re in a higher grade. Is this alright?
I’m a ghost so it’s perfectly fine.
There’s no problem with a mentor helping out. The school acknowledges it.
But still… They’re so unreliable.
Oh come on, it’ll be fine. It’s more fun with more people anyway.
This isn’t a field trip, you know…

As if to make just this point, a monster approached. Flay was unfazed.

Y-yes. Something about Chain Attacks and stuff…
Right. However, words have limits. Without practice, it is meaningless.
Take this opponent and show me you can beat ‘em with a Chain Attack!

Professor Feinne’s Alchemy 101: Support Actions
I mentioned this a bit last time probably, but let’s actually talk about Support Actions and how they make the combat system so much more awesome. So, our Standby characters show up in the upper right hand corner as cards just like the Card Gauge. If their card is fully lit, they are ready for a support action of some type. Support actions come in two flavors, offensive and defensive. Offensive support comes right after we attack and allows the new character to make an attack as they switch in. Defensive support comes as an enemy is attacking and allows the new character to take a hit for someone else. We cycle through our supports with L1 and R1, and if we’re not dozy about it we can easily do more than one offensive support in one attack (indeed there is a special attack we’ll see later that relies on just this). Offensive and Defensive support will become even stronger tactics later in the game when we are able to purchase the specific O-Support and D-Support skills for characters, giving them unique moves they use on Support. Our best practice at this point is to toss out some skills and then switch out, because we recover SP in Standby.

He was right, it did make things a lot easier.

Oh, you’re right. Let’s hurry.

Mr. Dior gave a happily brief explanation of what we were supposed to do.

You will have to find the gathering points yourself.
The time limit is, let’s see… Until 6 pm.
You must return here by then. Understood?
Students: Okay.
Today’s grades will be determined by the mineral you bring me.
I will hand out Pickaxes for you to use, so come and get them yourself.

As usual it fell to me to actually hit big rocks with a pickaxe.

System Message: You receive Key Item: Pickaxe.
Alright, let’s go gather!

Professor Feinne’s Alchemy 101: Minerology
Okay, so this is a big case of don’t do what Johnny don’t does here. I totally forget that you don’t actually have to do any of the stupid jumping crap here in Mana Ruins to progress to where you need to be to get an A. Grab the one nearby quickly, then go quickly grab the second while bypassing anything you can’t Fast Kill. At this point you’ve got a B, so you’re safe, but if you want an A you need to get all the way to the second area of Mana Ruins, where a third mining area that kicks out Legien Steel awaits. It’s very doable, I get decently close even doing some idiocy.

I had a feeling there were more minerals to get as time approached, but in the end we did okay…

Yeah. Let’s go back to where the teacher is.
Then let me take a look around at the minerals you’ve gathered.
Hmm, pretty good.
I think I’ll give you guys a B.

Mr. Lorr had another combat class for us today.

Video- “Combat II Burst”

Watch the Class

It was on some more advanced battle tactics.

Open your ears and listen carefully.
Everyone: Okay.
You guys all have weapons and they are all made by alchemy.
Monsters are weak against items made by alchemy, as well as Common Skills.
There are reasons behind this, but… I’ll leave those details for later.
Argh, quiet down! If you wanna know, look it up on your own time!
Either way, monsters get weaker every time they are attacked by alchemy.
And when this reaches a certain point, a Burst occurs.
Jordan: Burst…?
Patricia: I think I saw one before!
A Burst can be affected by a Mana’s movement or other things too, but…
Well, it doesn’t matter.
The important thing is, during a burst, various effects become bigger.
And so, today’s Assignment!
Go to the Living Forest and defeat the Stone Watcher, using a Burst.
And make it quick.
I won’t give credit to those who complain! Now hurry up and get going!

He provided some Flame bombs to assist us, which we took as a sign that this Watcher was vulnerable to fire.

Professor Feinne’s Alchemy 101: Burst Mode and Combat II
Burst Mode is both the path to awesome AP bonuses and the path to kicking the crap out of strong enemies, so we definitely need to learn how to use it. Basically, every hit of any attack adds to the Burst Meter at the bottom of the screen. The amount added increases massively if the attack exploits an enemy weakness. When the Burst Meter fills, we go into Burst Mode and it starts tracking how many hits we’ve done and how much damage we’ve done. Every attack does more damage while we’re in Burst Mode, but the Burst Meter will start depleting as we act (though it also refills from our actions, so Bursts can be extended for quite a while). There’s one more little wrinkle to Burst Mode that we won’t have access to until the end of Chapter 5, and I’ll mention that then.

As for the class, the thing is actually weak to lightning and ice as well. Don’t be an idiot like me and end up with the wrong people out and try to make sure everyone has an elemental common skill for an A.

We got through it without much trouble.

Phew. Now we just gotta report to Student Affairs.
Yep. He said to do it quickly, so we should go back fast.

I guess we weren’t quite quick enough because we only got a B, but it’s still enough to pass for the term so we’re happy with it.

I’ve been informed. The time you spent in battle determines your grade.
Please take out your Handbooks.

At least this gives me plenty of time to prepare for this battle arena thing…