The Let's Play Archive

Mystic Quest

by cardinal direction

Part 9: Volcano Climbing

9. Volcano Climbing

Before Shrug heads out for the Volcano, we should probably stock up on seeds. Magic is going to be immensely appreciated for taking out enemies quickly because our old buddy petrification is going to come back with a vengeance.

But why are these dopes “buying” zero?

Can one truly have zero seeds?

It looks like you can!

I’m not entirely sure if this glitch has a name or anything. If you don’t have any of a consumable and you buy 0 of them, you still get an item icon with a value of 0. Using it turns the count over from 0 to 255 or some other shenanigans with binary. That’s why it overflows and glitches, because as you can see the normal limit is 99.

Keep in mind that this can really screw up your inventory—those Refreshers have been transmuted into seeds, for instance. I’ve also heard that random items can appear or disappear but that hasn’t happened to me. I’m not totally sure what happens if you overflow into the key items but I have a feeling it’s not that good. Maybe you could somehow sequence break the game with this?

Realistically, I’m never going to use most of these seeds so I’m not going to keep them. Plus if I accidentally pick up Refreshers then something terrible might happen and I’m not going to chance it. Not now, at least! In the interest of not totally eliminating any difficulty I might have with the game from here on out, I’ll only pick up 5 seeds.

Anyway, back to business. This Battlefield nets you 1200 EXP so we’re just going to skip it. I have more than enough money for the rest of the game so I might only do one or two more Battlefields period. In any case, the new enemy here is in our actual destination anyway.

Say what you will about this section of the game, at least it has some pretty awesome music.

The Volcano is interesting. Out of all the dungeons we go through that could be called filler, this is one is definitively filler. I guess it’s tangentially related to the plot because we have to climb it to get to the Lava Dome? It has good music, it’s short, and we’re going to get what is possibly the best spell in the game here so I can’t complain too much.

Here’s that first new enemy that I mentioned. Ghosts are really just kind of a hassle. They’re not particularly threatening because they do pitiful physical damage, Coldness isn’t really a worry, and they can reduce your attack but when has that ever mattered?

They can counter with confusion and multiply similarly to Mummies but that’s really all they have going for them. Since they have Coldness you might have assumed they’re strong against Blizzard and you would be right.

Take the top path and you’ll see that chest “hidden”. That chest is where the Volcano redeems itself.

But these guys are blocking the tunnel to reach it, and that’s just not gonna fly.

Unfortunately, they’re also really annoying. Nitemares, like Centaurs, can confuse you but they’ve thrown sleep into their bag of status effects. They seem pretty weak physically though, so all they’re good for is being obnoxious.

Werewolves like to use Quake and confuse you, so they can also be pretty frustrating to deal with. Have you noticed everything getting confusion? Yeah... that’s not going to change any time soon.

Here they are flying a white flag and Shrug not giving a fuck.

Oh boy, HolyWhite is a super good spell. It’s absolutely the strongest spell we have in our inventory. It’s unique in that it doesn’t do any elemental damage so this is basically our go-to spell unless there’s a weakness to exploit, and even then you might just use White. While it unfortunately defaults to targeting all enemies, it still does very respectable damage. Obviously, it totally destroys when cast on a single enemy.

Shrug almost did 700 damage to both of them. Reuben’s hitting single enemies for 660 or so. I’m going to be honest, I have a hard time using anything else after this spell because it’s so powerful. It’s really good, you guys!

It also makes one of the best sounds in the game so there’s that too.

The enemies here are invisible so that must be some horribly thick ash. Like the Ice Pyramid, we’ll be getting an item almost immediately that defeats the point of this. There’s also only like two screens worth of enemies that are invisible so I’m not even sure what the point of this is.

There’s also nothing of value here so I’m not sure why I came here. Let’s head back to the westernmost path.

At least the Volcano makes something of an effort to have the enemies in interesting places instead of just giving you a narrow path and they block the door. There’s a Nitemare right here.

And a Werewolf here. This is preferable because at least you could feasibly avoid them even if you didn’t pick up the item.

See? We could actually finish up the Volcano right now and never bother with the item. So why have it in the first place?

You have to go out of your way and fumble through one of the tunnels to even reach it.

I guess it’s a gas mask and that lets you see enemies again? I dunno.

I mean, look, there aren’t even a lot of enemies that were invisible. Seems sorta pointless, if you ask me. Altogether, there’s only like 5 of them.

It’s a good thing we picked up White because Medusa is definitely a tough fight if the cards aren’t in your favor. While you can sort of muscle your way through the other “tough” fights in the game, Medusa is throwing status effects at you left and right. Of course, being Medusa, petrification is one of them. She’s also strong to Blizzard in case that’s your go to spell once you’re out of wizard spell charges.

You’ll want to take out the Werewolves, which is easy enough. Confusion is basically the worst thing that can happen to you here and getting rid of them makes it less likely. She can poison, paralyze, and confuse as well, but thankfully Shrug no longer has to worry about two of those.

Look at how much damage she did to Shrug in one hit with Snake Head. Of course, all six hits of it connected, but still.

I wasn’t entirely forthright when I said Shrug was falling behind, in retrospect. He’s still effectively killing every enemy in two hits. White is just incredibly powerful either way. His health is the only actual concern and even then it’s not too severe a problem.

This fight went really well for me because she mostly threw Poison Snake, her least damaging attack, at Reuben so Shrug was free to do heavy damage with White. If she’s too busy throwing around the more painful status effects like petrification and paralysis, it can be a bumpier ride. That’s especially true if she’s faster than whoever’s healing and you end up fighting solo.

The Volcano is honestly really short so I can’t be too upset with it. It’s only about three screens big, the loot is awesome, and now you’re killing enemies considerably quicker.

Next Time: First they climbed it, now they’re going to the bottom of it?

Sorry for such a short one this time, but I think the Lava Dome deserves its own update. Otherwise this one may have gone for way too long.