Part 14: Episode XIV: Teach a Man to Fish...Episode XIV: Teach a Man to Fish...
Welcome to the err...scenic Southern Plain. We scooted in here on a bit of a stormy day. The Southern Plain is much smaller than its northern counterpart. It's basically one open field with grazing deer and then a narrow crevice leading straight to our destination of Seafront.
Just past the central plain, a guard is being accosted by a swarm of Shades. What the hell the sentry was guarding in the ass end of nowhere is anyone's guess.
At least this will be a good opportunity to test out the newly obtained Dark Hand Sealed Verse. There isn't much to Dark Hand. It creates a giant energy fist to punch the daylights out of anything within a short range.
As Nier levels, he'll gain additional fists to pound monsters even harder. Dark Hand remains pretty great throughout the entire game. Its range is one of the shortest of any magic attack and it uses a ton of magic power. But, there is just something satisfying (and highly damaging) about using arcane arts to give something a cosmic black eye.
As thanks for the assist, the guard will give Nier yet another weapon for his growing armory: the Moonrise sword.
The Moonrise is really nothing much to write home about. But, like I said, it will be some time before we get another weapon that trumps the Lily-Leaf Sword. Sadly, I do not have a translation for this weapon's story either. But, fear not! This was yet another Drakengard expatriate. So, here's a blast from the past:
Back in the cannibal space baby ravaged Drakengard dimension, this sword went by the name of Moonfire. Caim obtained this weapon by doing a tedious key hunt across the ruins of Imperial Notspain's capital city in the first and sanest ending path of the game. Ah, memories...
To the eastern edge of the Southern Plain, Nier can come across the good old Spencer Mansion Estate. Good to know Umbrella is still in operation in the distant future. It will be some time before we'll be coming back here to escape a horde of zombie dogs because the helicopter pilot was a cowardly dick who went on to be skullfucked by a tall grinning monster's tentacle fist. So, let's move on to Seafront...
An uneventful stroll south later...
Music: Seafront Tunes
Welcome to the port city of Seafront: hub of world civilization. Granted, you can count the number of civilizations left in the known world on one hand. But still, it's a relatively bustling metropolis compared to Nier's Village.
Why, it even has a fully functional lighthouse!
"Stairs are...rough going on these old bones... But what if he...if he returns today?"
Hey, it might not get dark out anymore. But it does get stormy still. We won't see that either, but it is good to have a goal to work toward in your twilight years.
"You got a better idea?"
"Perhaps we could try asking some of the townspeople for advice."
"Now see, Weiss? Why didn't you just say that in the first place instead of being so surly about it?"
So, asking townspeople is about as useful as asking a quadriplegic how to tap dance. One would assume fish would be found near the water, so let's head toward the docks we saw in the flyover, mmm?
Seafront has quite the robust marketplace. You can by a much larger range of items in this block of the city compared to the starting town's meager offerings.
While we're in the neighborhood, Nier might as well pick up the requested items for the last sidequest we'd left on the backburner. You'd think gardening supplies would be more readily available in the pastoral farming village than the port city. But, what do I know about 34th century supply and demand...?
Anyhow, if Nier wanders around aimlessly for too long, Weiss will get annoyed and just tell him exactly where to go to progress the quest. But, reaching the logical location of the docks will reveal the next plot trigger.
"But why give a fellow a fish when ya can teach him? ...Here. Take this pole and give 'er a shot. You can catch shaman fish on the beach."
"Uhh...neat. Thanks... So uh...do I like...lob this thing at the fish when I see them...? It doesn't look very sharp."
"How do ya fish? ...Is that a serious question? You gotta move yer body away from where the fish is going and reel in. Got it? Here, lemme give ya a lure while I'm at it. Fishing is a test of wills 'tween man and the beast! Never give up the fight!"
"Guess we'd better find a good fishing spot..."
So we can now go fishing in most non-combat areas with water. You see these instructions? Ignore these. They are terrible at explaining the mini-game.
Now, the old man said to go fishing at the beach and there is a beach right next to him. But this guy, as we'll discover later, is king shit of fishing mountain and the dock here and subsequent beach adjacent to it is for pros only. If you go attempt to fish at the beach you will catch fuck all. It's alright if you do that a few times. It's a pretty poorly explained quest.
But, if you're not an absolute retard, you'll probably wonder what the hell you're doing wrong after several failed attempts and look toward the mini-map to notice the BIG RED X FOR EVERY SINGLE MAIN QUEST MISSION IN THE GAME is not, in fact, trained on this beach.
Indeed, Nier is meant to go to a much more beginner friendly strip of beach on the far western edge of town, over near the lighthouse. If you make it over here, you will be able to accomplish the quest with no problem whatsoever.
I like to fish near this big dopey seal. Seafront's beaches have several large seals happily rolling around in the sand and generally chilling out in the sun. Humanity might be on its way out the door, but at least it's nice to see a good variety of wildlife made it okay through the apocalypse.
Right, then. Let me tell you how to fish in NIER. It is really, really, REALLY easy. It is just that the in-game instructions are shit. Just follow these simple alternative instructions:
First of all, just find your desired fishing spot and pick your bait. Certain fish need specific bait to appear (as well as fishing in specific locations) but that is getting ahead of events. The shaman fish (i.e. the only mandatory fish in the entire game) can be caught with just a bare lure as bait.
After picking out the bait, Nier will cast his line automatically. At this point, it is a very good idea to turn your camera angle to one of the sides of Nier so you can get a good look at the fishing rod. You need to look for it to bend significantly. It will usually tug once or twice just slightly. Ignore those times....
You're looking for a big 20-30 degree dip in the rod like this. You know how the instructions said to press X (or A on the Xbox360)? IGNORE THAT CRAP! It's lying to you. Forget there is even the X/A button. You will never EVER need to press X. What you do need to do is immediately hold the left stick straight back full tilt.
Music: Fishing Duel
If you have pulled back at the right time, the fish duel music will kick in and Nier will begin automatically reeling the bugger in. A health bar for your aquatic foe will appear and begin draining rapidly.
At this point, ignore the fishing pole and focus on Nier's body. What you need to do is hold the left stick in the direction Nier shifts his weight. And I'm not talking straight to the left or straight to the right. Just, dip the stick a slight bit to the down-left or slight bit to the down-right. Like doing a motion for a Hadouken without finishing it off. If you hit the sweet spot the health meter will begin draining rapidly again. If Nier shifts back to center, just switch the motion downward once more. Simple.
Like I said, completely ignore the X/A button. You'll never need to press that shit. When the health meter depletes completely, Nier will automatically catch the fish. Congrats!
That is all there is to fishing. The only difficult part is that all the quests involving fish require a LOT of fish... Like 10 of a type at minimal.
But, Cavia is surprisingly merciful with this little distraction. If you are utterly terrible at the fishing mini-game and fuck-up 5+ times (in the correct location, mind you) a little sequence will kick in...
"Yes! I finally caught it!"
"Too bad it took 278 tries..."
There, the fish main quest is complete. You will never have to do it again if you do not want to do so. Now, let's get this mess back to our sick little girl.
Music: Seafront Tunes
Music: Fishing Duel