Part 31: Update XXXI - You'll have to complete training sessions for each area in order to move on.Update XXXI - You'll have to complete training sessions for each area in order to move on.
Last time, I spent over two hours listening to the same two songs.
This time, we're finally going to deal with Epsilon and his Rebellion.
You just fought quite a tough enemy, X... I wish I could help out more, but... I just want you to know that... My thoughts are always with you and the others when you're fighting out there! I'm always rooting for you! Teleport device destination set to 「Grave Ruins Base」.
It won't be long now, I'm sure! Let's give it our best!
Music: Chapter Title
Music: Ancient Fortress
Right off the bat, we have a locked door.
To the left is a corridor with a strange beam in the middle.
The camera cuts to the doors as they lock us in.
Uhoh! We're locked in! Now what?!
Don't panic, Massimo. We're just stuck for a while. And there might be a way out...
and that weird energy beam.
Well, were not going to get anywhere standing around yapping. I don't know what that thing does, but well just have to figure it out.
Its just as Zero says. Be careful!
The beams are simple. You just run into them.
Sending security guards... Engage immediately.
As you might have guessed, this starts a fight.
A bafflingly weak fight????
Like, come on, this is Epsilon's last stand! Don't throw an enemy from the very beginning of the game at me! Make me work for it!
Anyways, beating them makes the beam close off and turn blue, and the doors unlock.
Well, the door's open, so lets Huh?!
The beam changes color to yellow.
Looks like the system is resetting!
And also starts dropping back down to the ground.
So I have to haul ass to the far door.
A few more seconds, and the beam returns to red. If I walk into the corridor now, the doors will lock again and I'll have to trigger another fight to reopen them. At the very least, random encounters are disabled for this section.
Forced Battle Count: 1
This is merely the beginning.
The next room has two beams.
The fights here are a bit better, but are still complete jokes.
Both beams need to be cleared to unlock the room, but now we have two paths.
Forced Battle Count: 3
The west path is optional, but has loot, like the dungeon's first Treasure Token.
This locked room is shaped like a U, with beams on the lower corners, and a room at the bottom and far edge.
The two rooms have a Figure Token and a 5000z.
Forced Battle Count: 5
The beams in this room stay blue long enough for me to grab both things and run out.
Don't get used to that.
As the beams in the previous room have come down, forcing me to do them again to leave.
Two fights later, and I move on.
Forced Battle Count: 7
That's 6 fights against Chapter 4 enemies, by the way.
Here we have a curved room, with a beam in the middle and both edges.
The fights here have moved up to Chapter 5, which still aren't a threat.
To the left is a Beam Miracle S for Marino, as well as a token.
Forced Battle Count: 10
These beams also stay blue for a bit.
The right path leads to a terminal, as well as a free Bladey behind my minimap.
And with that, the laser gate at the start has come down.
Except in order to get there, I have to backtrack through three rooms worth of beams.
Forced Battle Count: 13
Forced Battle Count: 15
Forced Battle Count: 16
With 16 fights against long outdated enemies under our belts, we can finally progress.
The game puts a Tank Energy 100 right after the teleporter, but if Preon Shielders and Soldiers posed a threat to you this far in you have far bigger issues.
Up next we have a square-ish shaped room, with a treasure room in each corner and the exit at the top.
The path itself has a token on it, while the beams are at the bottom middle and both upper corners.
The problem is that clearing every beam puts them here, meaning you only have time to hit up one room before having to fight them all over again.
The fights here are S Botos and S Ferhams, by the way. Not that two Chapters old enemies are a threat.
Top left holds an Unlock Limiter.
Forced Battle Count: 19
Bottom left has a Figure Token.
Forced Battle Count: 22
Bottom right has 3000FME.
Forced Battle Count: 25
Top right has a Gain Hyper.
Forced Battle Count: 28
And one last loop around to actually leave the damn place.
Forced Battle Count: 31
That's 15 fights against the same two enemies.
But wait, there's more!
The room is symmetrical, with an item and a beam on each side. A Cure All is on the left and a Backup on the right.
The beam fights here use the upgraded Preons from last Chapter.
The side rooms have tokens.
Forced Battle Count: 33
But the beams are already down, requiring refights for each detour.
And another token on the other side.
These are the only things in these side rooms, meaning people on PS2 looking for stuff like Mechaniloids get screwed over for going in here with nothing to show for it.
Forced Battle Count: 35
And then one last trip to open the exit.
Forced Battle Count: 37
Thirty fucking seven fights against old, outdated enemies. That's a god damn third of the fights in the Eternal Forest, and at least that has the courtesy to reward me for my time!
This is the big moment, this is us taking the fight to the Rebellion's doorstep, and the devs make it drag out with meaningless fights.
One more token next to the teleporter.
And with that, we're free from beams forever.
On a different note, have any of you noticed anything? How about a lack of anything, namely god damn cutscenes! We're approaching Epsilon's final stand, and he couldn't even be bothered to make a token appearance remarking on it. Botos got more screentime than him, and he was a borderline joke character!
A save point, now that we're past the beams.
Music: Irregular Battle II
It also means random encounters get enabled, including some new enemies, like this Preon S (Scar)Face, which has a unique trick in Damage Charge, which throws up an S-type barrier and return all damage dealt next turn with Discharge.
As well as the Preon S Epsilon, which has a full set of Giga and Ultra Giga elemental attacks, as well as Codebreaker, Leak WE, and Overload, which drops the target's WE to 0%.
They also showed up in the Eternal Forest.
And yes, these are the only new enemies for this chapter. You can feel the budget crunch from here.
And to make it doubly obvious, the next room looks like the textbook definition of a boss arena, but nothing happens in it! All it has is a full set of Build items, including a Build Hyper for Zero.
Seriously, tell me this place doesn't scream 'important cutscene' to you!
And that's the entire floor, too!
The next floor is a bit darker, and has a Tank Energy 25 and 50 up for grabs.
Which leads into the Revolver Room (Revolver Room).
The Revolver Room leads into the Revolver Shaft. There are 8 Revolver Rooms, and the two terminals let me shift which room is open. The one on the left moves three rooms forward, while the one on the right moves two rooms back.
It also starts an animation of watching the rooms shift, which takes forever and has to play out each time you shift a room. And on top of that, the terminals lock out after a shift, forcing you to duck into the Revolver Room to reopen them, so have fun if you have trouble landing on the exit door.
The laser puzzle in Chapter 7 was bad, but at least the worst of it was optional. This and the security beams earlier are mandatory to progress and are pure padding to make the dungeon last longer.
Anyways, Room 4 has a Z Saber+++.
Room 7 has Tank Parts.
Room 2 has a fight against a few Preons.
Same with Room 5.
And Room 8.
Room 6 has Vitality Missiles.
And Room 3 has our exit.
On the other end of the shaft is a Tank Energy 50.
And another damn teleporter.
We must be near the end, right?