Part 13: Update XIII - This is horrible! Why do I have to face someone like you here?!Update XIII - This is horrible! Why do I have to face someone like you here?!
Music: Jungle Treasure
I'll make this simple.
It's FFX's party swap. Pick someone in the back row and swap them in without using a turn.
Unlike FFX, however, EXP in this game is split between everyone no matter what. No having to stall out every fight just to let everyone in the back take a swing.
On top of that, WE adds in a bit more of a tactical cost to swapping. WE gain only runs at the start of a turn. If I swap X for Massimo, Massimo will come in with his base 20% WE, making you keep people in the front lines if you want to use their ATs.
Marino, as you might expect from a thief, prioritizes Speed in exchange for durability. Much like Zero, her Beam Knife deals two hits on a regular attack.
She also comes with the new Sub Weapons. Hawkeye costs 7 WE and gives 100% accuracy for one turn, while Get Zenny + also costs 7 WE and boosts the zenny drop of the targeted enemy by 10%.
FM-wise, she has 3 slots and decent immunity, and comes with the exclusive Fat Slicer, which gives an extra 10% dodge chance.
Her high Speed makes her a good pick for the Exodus, as she'll usually get the first turn and can run from any annoying fights.
Treasure Token off to the side.
Music: Irregular Battle I
Another impact of swapping out is that party-wide FMs like Analyze and Exodus only work if the user is on the field. Swapping Spider out for Marino here will disable Analyze until I bring him back in.
The nice part about Hawkeye is that it makes Pararoids an easy kill.
While I'm at it, I might as well talk about Marino's Action Trigger. Her AT, Emotional Reel, is a slot machine. Getting three of the same symbol in the center will bring out a different attack.
Marino Stamp is the pity result if you mess up, like Spider's Fumble. It deals low damage and has a good chance of missing.
Hyper Dive is used when three boots line up. It's a basic high damage move.
Your Life, Please! needs three hearts. It deals three S-type hits and heals for all damage taken.
Her most important move, however, is I'll Take That! It is a very simple move. When you get three treasure chests, Marino deals a bit of damage and steals an item, much like Mug in Final Fantasy.
What makes it important is that the steal has a 100% chance of working. Getting the Gatling Buster off a Killer Mantis took several minutes of just stalling while waiting for Item Capture to work. With I'll Take That!, it'll get instantly grabbed so long as there isn't something else left in the steal list to clog it up.
And as a bonus, time for the reason I went to the trouble of grinding out a Shock Lance.
Preon Pods here have a 200% weakness to Thunder. Elemental weapons add their element to the user's AT.
So combine that with Power Charge and Glint Armor and you get...
But wait, there's more!
Massimo's Action Trigger is upgradable. Dealing over 3,000 damage in a single shot like this gives him his first upgrade.
Now Massimo has access to the Critical bar, giving up to an 80% crit chance on his AT for a free 50% extra damage!
You can clearly see space for a fourth bar. This isn't even his final form.
Music: Jungle Treasure
Moving on, we find a room full of loot. A Reboot, Cure One, Tank Energy 50, a Token on the far side of the room, and a Mettaur for the Deployment Center.
And finally, one last Token by this save point.
Well, we found the pre-boss hallway. The crystals hold the usual Gain Hyper and Tank Energy 100.
Video: Battle with Psyche
Music: Mysterious Enemy
They weren't able to get too far after dealing with Marino.
You can feel her smugness from here.
You saw her getting healed, Psyche. You just left her there.
Really starting to think he never actually earned a PhD.
And X, is it?!
Ha! Wretched vermin! I pity you, I truly do... You obviously have no understanding of how far the Rebellion Army can take Reploid technology!
I'm wasting my time with you. I'll take care of you myself.
Perfect! You'll make a good specimen.
Music: Final Battle
Dr. Psyche always opens up with Summon Needles. Each set of three counts as a unit, and add constant pressure during the fight.
Each Needle has a three hit normal attack, and has access to every status ailment in the game thanks to Stungun, Smokeout, Cryogenics, Virus Attack, and, most alarmingly, Codebreaker to try and inflict Instant Death.
On top of all that, he can follow up with Needle Shower, sacrificing all Needles to debuff or even buff any target on the field.
And when I say 'any', I mean any. On a test run I had a Needle Shower give my side multiple buffs and debuff himself!
With Spider in the back, I have to sub him in to get Analyze shots.
Psyche may love his status ailments, but at least we have a constant supply of curatives from the Needles.
The Virus Missile and Smoke Missile are both Sub Weapons that inflict a status, with Virus and Blind, respectively.
Bit strange how Psyche doesn't drop anything.
The general rule of the fight is that X deals with the Needles, while the others get to work on Psyche.
Oh boy this is a weird one.
4th Dimension Slow, despite the name, is just Psyche grabbing a random thing and chucking it at someone. He had access to six things, and each has a different effect:
(According to user Raitzeno, the name is actually mistranslated, and is supposed to be 4th Dimension Throw instead.)
1) A book that deals S-type damage and ignores Shield.
2) A glass jar that acts as Ultra Blizzard, hitting everyone with Water damage.
3) A key that has an added Shield debuff.
4) A round-bottom flask that deals Water damage and inflicts Freeze.
5) A screwdriver that acts as a normal S-type attack.
6) A syringe that absorbs 10% of the target's LE.
He can also use Doom Blaster, which deals two hits and attempts to inflict Berserk.
The Needles are weak enough that a partial charge is usually enough to kill them, or at least knock them into FS range.
...oh christ that ATB preview. If those Needles had any bulk this would have been a suicidal plan.
Not that it'll stop them for long. Psyche will always use another Summon Needles if there are none on the field. You could leave one alive and pray it doesn't land any bad ailments.
But Psyche can break out some heavy hits, so forcing him to waste a round resummoning them gives you some breathing room.
Marino's usual job in a boss fight is to land I'll Take That! to get their steals quickly.
I suck at slots.
Massimo, meanwhile, has his usual job.
His damage really picks up once he unlocks the Critical bar.
Low rolls on a 50% Charge Shot tend to leave Needles in FS range, refunding X enough WE to let him do it again next turn.
Marino gets another attempt.
And pulls it off!
Another Charge Shot nets us our first multi-Final Strike.
This gets X 35% WE refunded instead of 25%, making it easier to kill the next wave of Needles.
Another hit from Massimo leaves him nearly dead.
Followed by a triple Final Strike from X.
...the game sorta devolves into 'how many ATs can you cram into one fight', huh.
Marino gets Psyche's other steal off an Item Capture.
And with one final hit from Massimo.
The doctor falls.
Where's the kaboom? There was supposed to be a Reploid-shattering kaboom!
We scientists have a nasty bite!
You'll never beat my evolved form!
Music: Fight! X
Surprise! Two phase boss fight out of nowhere!
Spider makes another appearance for one more Analyze shot.
Dr. Psyche's final form, the Mad Nautilus now has an actual drop list just to show that there won't be a third form waiting.
Everyone else held back on their Hyper Modes for this, but Massimo burned through his stock on Psyche. So I use our first Gain Hyper to top him off.
His regular attacks have a good bit of punch to them.
I really don't like fighting Mad Nautilus. He's a flying unit, forcing Marino to pop Hawkeye just to connect, has a 100% block rate, and on top of all that...
What little damage you do deal is countered.
The game is kind enough to spell out the gimmick for this fight.
That's right, we gotta sit around and waste time until Nautilus uses the one move that makes him vulnerable.
Just to make it worse, the form change now gives him access to Mad Cocktail to try and inflict Virus, Blind, Stun, or Berserk on the entire party, forcing you to waste time healing it off.
Here's how the fight goes: Massimo preps Power Charge, everyone else wastes time.
The one drawback to Massimo's upgrade is that now he needs more WE to reliably cap out both bars, so he spends a turn patching up X before starting his Power Charges at 100% WE next turn.
Marino tries to get the steal.
Every three turns, Mad Nautilus does this.
Mad Ecstasy is his strongest attack, and has three variants. He can hit one person six times, two people three times, or the entire party twice.
As an aside, the bestiary I've been using mentions that Mad Nautilus also has access to Death Gravity (deal 25% current LE to one target) and Energy Capture (absorb 10% of target's LE). However, I could not for the life of me get him to use it, so I'm not sure if I was just horribly unlucky or the guide is wrong.
Oh well, neither of those are unique attacks so there will be other chances to see it
After Mad Ecstasy, that little helmet on the back opens up, removing his passive block chance and counters.
You should know the routine by now.
Nautilus has slightly less health than Psyche, so it won't take that many turns to finish him off.
That first hit knocked him about a third of the way to a Final Strike! If it crit it probably would have dropped him to half.
X Collider, meanwhile, is a C-type attack, and Nautilus is a flying enemy.
It still deals good damage, but if luck isn't on your side you could end up with most of it whiffing entirely.
On his next turn, the core closes, and the cycle repeats.
At low health, he swaps out his normal attack for Penetration, which bypasses Shield.
As Marino already has low Shield, it doesn't boost the damage much.
Marino can't deal damage while the bulkhead is down, but she does have another job.
Now the real fun starts!
Marino's Hyper Mode, Quicksilver, has one purpose: making Marino incredibly fucking fast. Taking 75% damage from Water, as well as gaining +50% LE, +20% Power, and +200% Speed, Marino becomes the fastest thing in the room no matter what. By the end of the game it isn't uncommon for Marino to burn through her entire Hyper stock before anyone else gets a single turn!
This makes her an incredibly good item caddy, letting her sling whatever heals and buffs are needed with no risk of reprisal.
...art team, did you have to make her legs skin-colored for this? Seriously, how did this game pull an E rating?
Right now, she just passes turns to hit 100% again for another AT.
I suck at slots.
On his next Mad Ecstasy turn, he shows off his single target version.
If X wasn't blocking, that probably would have killed him from full.
But in the end, all it does is sign Dr. Psyche's death warrant.
And Mad Nautilus becomes the first boss to fall to a Final Strike.
Music: Boss Victory Jingle + Trajectory of Battle II
Music: Worrisome Cinnamon!
Youve rescued my dear Cinnamon. But... I wont cooperate. Not with the Rebellion Army, and not with you.
Gaudile, do you have anything to stop the Rebellion from making another attempt? At this point you should join us just to keep Cinnamon safe.
The Force Metal Generator... Cinnamon... Must not be used to wage war!
X... Professor! I want to fight with X!
Remember kids, turning an innocent girl into the perfect
Wha-?! Cinnamon...What's gotten into you?
I... I'm not being used. This is my own idea. We cant let people like Psyche and the Rebellion Army get away with this! I know now... That I must put this power that you've given me to good use! I want to try and help my new friends.
Well, lad... Perhaps Cinnamon is right after all. Dr. Psyche was a wonderful mind. The Rebellion Army destroyed him. We cant allow that to continue.
Thank you, Professor Gaudile. Looks like we have a new ally!
Marino! Youre going to fight with us Marino?!
Cinnamon she literally kidnapped you.
But... a thief like me?
Your past doesn't matter... I knew you had a good heart... Thats why I let you kidnap me!
And also give your dad a heart attack. Kinda a dick move, that.
Music: Memories of Gigantis