Part 7: So much for the difficulty curve.
Going to need this for later.
Before we continue with the story, I'm going to make this game cry. This update is going to be all the evidence people need for why the places you can go in future games are so restricted: the alternative is this.
First off, let's grab that WoodArmor that was mentioned before. By the way, forum goon BlitzBlast corrected me. The damage done by attacks your armor would be weak to is normal, not double.
Either way, I'm going to need the damage reduction.
Billy: These viruses are very dangerous. They move up to the front of the field and let loose a little electricity ball that homes in on MegaMan slowly. What's dangerous is if you get hit by it. That induces a status condition I can only call "Fuckery Spasm". Fuckery Spasm electrifies MegaMan instead of paralyzing him like you might expect from an electric attack. This causes him to take 10 damage every time he takes a step, and the damage dealt increases the duration of the status condition. It's a wretched mix of annoying and lethal.
Also in the area is StoneMan V2. His NaviChip is incredibly strong, dropping three boulders randomly onto the enemy field three times. Each boulder deals 100 damage, and this is just the basic NaviChip.
Anyway, here's the crux of my plan to plunder the depths of the Cyberworld. In Sal's cash register, there are these viruses.
Popper: Popper viruses look like bagworms. What they do is stay above the field most of the time, out of range of all attacks. They'll drop down only to use a WoodTower attack that spikes towards MegaMan similar to the VolGear's FireTower. If you watched the WoodMan video, you saw him using this as well.
The thing is, the WoodTower chip they drop deals a whopping 140 damage, massive for this point in the game. You can have 10 copies of the same chip in your folder. An hour or so of farming later, and my folder's damage output skyrockets.
During the farming, of course, I ran into the other viruses in there.
Cloudy: Cloudy viruses are annoying. They'll stay in one panel and move up and down, drifting in and out of attack range. Periodically, they'll shoot a cloud into your column that rains up and down it, and they can have two of them out on the field at once. This makes dodging other attacks extremely difficult.
"Demobang": Demobang viruses are another virus that doesn't appear in later games with a name. There are going to be a lot of them this update, considering what I'll be up to. Demobangs are slow, but are high priority targets. If you leave them alone long enough, they'll move to the front of the field and set down a targeted grenade that points diagonally, vertically, or horizontally. Step into the blast range and it'll explode. They'll box you in quickly, because they can set up to three of the things on the field. However, quick footwork can let you step in and out of the blast range before the explosion catches MegaMan.
Moving on past the GovernmentComplex area, things start getting dangerous and fun.
Megalian: Also known by the stupider name Heady in MMBN6. Megalian viruses have auras that correspond to one of the four elements. See the number 10 on the AquaAura? That means the aura will prevent all damage below 10, and then vanish when an attack that does do at least 10 hits it. Later versions of Megalians have 40 point FireAuras and 80 point WoodAuras. Due to them being elemental, you can also use the appropriate elemental attack to get rid of the aura, even if it doesn't do enough damage. The viruses themselves attack by launching their heads at MegaMan down his row quickly.
The game kind of expects you to stay out of the later internet areas out of fear of the potent viruses inside. I'll put it this way, the "WWW Server" doesn't become relevant to the story until after the thread's eponymous Power Plant level, which is very late in the game.
We can't enter, not until the plot dictates, but that's fine, since the rest of the internet is available to us anyway.
Gaia: These statue viruses stay that way only temporarily. Whenever they aren't attacking, they have the StoneBody condition, which reduces all damage to 1 point. They'll move up to the front of MegaMan's field slowly, remove the StoneBody condition, and swing their hammers down on the field. This creates an explosion that travels column by column, and can be dodged by moving forward into it at the correct time. They then warp back to their pedestals and repeat the process.
Twisty: Twisty viruses are stationary themselves, but they create a RemoBit object above your field, which methodically zaps your panels and breaks them, gradually moving across the field until you have nowhere to run. Take them out fast, their immobility lets you get rid of them quickly.
Also worth noting are the Fishy2 viruses, which leave trails of fire behind them when they dash. They're probably the most dangerous viruses in the update because they'll dash down your row, leave a trail of fire, and then dash again. If they ever get to dash down the middle of the field, such as when they start right in front of you, they'll be able to score unavoidable damage off you because you'll be boxed into one of the side rows, which they will then happily dash down. Heaven help you if you fight more than one at once.
Starting from the next area, each area will have a special door at the end that will only open if you satisfy a special requirement within the area.
This one requires you not to flee any virus battles, which is as easy as not including any Escape chips in the folder.
"LockOn": LockOn viruses are yet another stationary virus. They have high HP, however, so unlike the Twisty viruses, they're not just sitting ducks. What they do is send a cursor out into MegaMan's field, searching for him. When it finds him, it will lock on and begin blasting away with machine gun fire, forcing you to move as fast as you can around the field to avoid having large chunks of your HP blown away.
"PolrBear": Might as well keep the naming scheme in line with the games, right? There's an 8 character limit on names. A pair of PolarBears is an upcoming miniboss in the actual story, so they'll be laughable when we get to them since we're fighting them early. Anyway, they attack by creating an ice cube and shooting it forward. It will take up the back panel of the row, so they tend to force you forwards.
There's a merchant here, but he really doesn't have anything worthwhile.
"Nautilus": Nautilus viruses are probably the most irritating at this point. They have a BubbleWrap barrier around them, which can only be broken by chip attacks, and will regenerate a few seconds after you pop it. On the offensive side, they will move into MegaMan's row and launch an AquaTower that moves in a straight line down it. Between popping the BubbleWrap and dodging their attacks, actually killing them is quite annoying, thankfully they have low HP.
Another powerful weapon I snap up is a small set of the Gaia1 chip. I could have gotten more, but farming for them is a lot more annoying than the WoodTower chips, which I had already spent over an hour on by that point. Gaia chips create the same column-to-column explosion across the whole field the viruses themselves do, and the attack deals 100 damage. Very nice, although the drawback is that MegaMan is immobile for a few seconds. Being able to blast the entire field with 100 damage is worth it, however.
This area has two exits, and both of them check the same thing, which I mentioned before was whether or not you ran from viruses.
The next area requires you to collect a certain number of chips from battles, but we'll be coming back here later.
So we'll go the other way for now for the sake of chip collecting. The way we're going now leads to a dead end, the other way leads to the end of the internet.
This area requires that your average busting rank be high enough. I think the average just has to be at or above 6. I'm not sure, but I didn't do all that well and still got through.
You can't run from viruses here either. Either it's an automatic fail, or it just cripples your average, I didn't experiment.
Piranha: These viruses show up in their first forms in the next dungeon in the story. This is their third and final form we're encountering first. They move into MegaMan's row and release a cursor that travels forward. If the cursor hits MegaMan, the Piranhas will all open fire and shoot harpoons out of their mouths down the row they're on.
"Swarm": Swarm viruses move up and down their columns similar to Fishy viruses, before dashing at MegaMan when they move onto his row. The key difference is that they drain his HP and use it to heal themselves if they've taken damage.
By the way, the mystery data loot starts becoming ridiculous at this point of the game.
Like I said, I don't know the exact requirement, but I got an average of about 6-7 and managed to get through.
Here's the dead end area. There's a merchant here, once again with nothing I'm interested in and extremely expensive upgrades. For reference, my max HP is about 300 here, so most viruses can kill me in 2 or 3 hits, even with the WoodArmor program.
"Millbox": Millbox viruses are stationary. They'll blow out a series of tornadoes that move panel by panel to where MegaMan is standing. Depending on which version you're facing, they tornadoes will be able to reach farther and farther into your field.
"SmugWorm": SmugWorm viruses are rare encounters, and they're pretty tough. They'll move around randomly, and the two segments behind the head will tend to move either in front of or inside the same panel as the head, which protects it from damage. The head will attack with, depending on which version of the SmugWorm, a fireball that moves straight, a spark that chases MegaMan Billy style, an AquaTower, or a shockwave. Additionally, they'll use their own SnakeEgg chips to drop a snake onto MegaMan's side of the field, which moves around quickly and randomly and must be avoided. Overall, quite strong for a virus.
Once again, the mystery data here is awesome. This particular chip is in fact used in the game's most powerful P.A., but that's for much later.
Gaia2 K converts the folder to a mostly K code, with a bit of O and D.
I also farm the SmugWorms until one coughs up the very rare SnakeEgg chip, which is just a personal badge of honor for myself.
I then double back to the other pathway, which has the area you need to collect a certain number of chips from.
A few minutes of farming later, and we're through.
The next area has an annoying premise that isn't actually too bad in execution. You have to avoid viruses and keep the number of random battles you encounter low. This sounds annoying as hell because that's entirely out of your control, but just taking the most direct path to the end, in a relatively linear area, will get you through.
The trick here is that you can get the door open, and then explore all the side passageways for goodies and rack up chips from the local viruses before proceeding through.
This next area is a spin on the earlier busting level average requirement. If your busting average falls too low, you fail and get the chance to start over at the beginning of the area.
CanDevil: CanDevils are pretty straightforward, they move into MegaMan's row and blow a fireball down it. However, that candle in the back of the field will cause it to regenerate HP at a fairly quick rate. My favorite way to deal with this is to lay down two Dynamite1 chips, which blow up down the entire row for 100 damage, blasting the CanDevil and its candle at the same time, the second one killing it.
What tripped me up on this area was this bit of idiotic if not outright malevolent design. There's a path here, in what looks like a dead end with a merchant, and you can't fucking see it!
This is it, the last of the requirement doors.
The final area, Internet 16, beckons. Unlike all other areas, it has an extremely simple layout. It's just a giant square with a ramp leading to an upper path.
This Navi hints about a certain something...what could it be?
The last bit of swag is the immensely powerful HeroSword I chip. It deals 200 damage down 3 panels in front of MegaMan.
Well, remember what that guy said about a "final trial" awaiting the true hero? If you come here with a complete library, you fight the game's secret bonus boss. I already said I was going to cheat for library completion anyway, might as well just do it now and take on Bass.EXE way earlier than the programmers would have wanted!
Except it seems as though you can only do it after beating the game or something. I tried and tried to encounter the secret boss, but to no avail, he just wouldn't show up. Man, by the time I get to fight him for real, I'll have access to Chip Traders and all sorts of upgrades! Dammit, I'm so disappointed! I wanted to take on Bass.EXE with 300 HP and a scrounged-up folder! He'll be too easy by the time I beat the game...
Well, fortunately, I have a plan B. We'll see that later, for now, let's get back to the story.