Part 67: Episode LXII: A True FriendEpisode LXII: A True Friend
Music: Cold Steel Coffin ~ Battle
Geez, Kainé has been un-petrified for all of a couple days and she's already gotten impaled and been consumed by her Shade half. That girl is getting the shit end of the stick lately. Of course NIER's second half passes that shit stick around like it's an Olympic torch...
Right then, time for a battle with Shade-Kainé. Possessed Kainé is all about one thing: speed. She is fast as hell. Indeed, she's probably the fastest boss in the entire game. She flips around the room like crazy, wall jumps all over the arena, and tries to ninja Nier in the face whenever she gets close.
And that is the key thing to remember in this fight: don't let her get Nier. (There, Osaka. I made a damn Nier pun... Happy?) She can bust out quick, damaging combos like nobody's business if she draws close.
In addition to combo slashes, Kainé can summon up a bullet storm of energy balls at will. These are pretty difficult to evade, since their animation is weird and floaty and they are all are quite good at homing in on our burly hero. Luckily, they can be swatted out of the air with melee attacks pretty well.
Getting hit by Shade-Kainé's bullet hell attacks hurts like hell. She barely hit me during the course of battle and she still managed to do double the damage Gretel inflicted in his entire fight. It's not really helped that there is no HP refill between the fights.
For some reason, Weiss says you shouldn't use melee during the battle. This time around, it's just flavor text so you don't go straight up killing Kainé or the like. Unlike Number 6, she is quite vulnerable to Nier's blade. Though, magic is quite a bit more damaging to her berserk form.
The hardest part of taking down our lingerie clad companion is the fact her Attack Gauge times out incredibly fast. If Nier is without a decent stock of MP at his disposal, it's pretty easy to have to go a few more rounds with the gal. Unlike Number 6 where you could prepare for taking it out and store some MP, Kainé's Attack Gauge appears at random points when kicking her ass and there's no clear way to gauge when to store up juice for the finishing blow.
Music: Kainé ~ Salvation
All that said, Kainé does not need her entire health gauge depleted to finish her off. After all, Papa Nier doesn't have a policy of murdering his friends... Maybe slapping 'em around until they stop being possessed raging abominations. But there's a strict no murder policy. Caim would not approve... Red took a heel turn in that one terrible ending in the middle of the game and he offed her ass within five minutes.
I have to note that the following dialog is one of uhh.....two times in the entire game where dialogue auto-advances. The following goes down in rapid succession...
"Ngh... I...I couldn't hold it back... I can't be with-"
"We're always going to be together, Kainé. If you transform again, we'll just stop it again! As many times as it takes! I don't care how tough it is, we're gonna get you back! I like being outside because I'm with you, Kainé. I'm able to ignore my appearance and keep going because of you. I'm weak, and sad, and lonely, but somehow you make me strong! You're my friend, and I need you! So you can't go away!"
"All right! All right. Stop crying."
"...Thank you. I'm all right."
Nier helps the newly restored Kainé to her feet. As he does, the group notices a shiny at the altar where Yonah was rescued from earlier. But more importantly...
Apparently Shade-Kainé's defeat and a friendship speech from Emil was the password for a hidden passage beyond the former resting place of Grimoire Weiss.
If we take a gander beyond the fancy table, there is quite clearly an old world elevator in the back of this room. Unfortunately, access to it is currently barred by a rather powerful magical seal.
On that same note, the shiny object in front of the barrier is quite clearly a plot key MacGuffin. I am going to guess it is following standard Zelda-esque conventions and the other pieces are scattered in temples across the four winds...
"I have no idea."
"How remarkably useless of you. ...Well, let's go ask Popola."
Later that day...
Music: Village Room Ambience
"Can you determine its meaning?"
"I think this is the key to unlocking the Shadowlord's Castle."
"I wrote down all the words I can understand. This fragment is called 'The Stone Guardian.' Given that you found it in the Lost Shrine, the words must mean something. There are spaces here for four other fragments as well. 'Sacrifice'... 'The Law of Robotics'... 'The Memory Tree'... 'Loyal Cerberus'... 'The Law of Robotics' probably refers to the Junk Heap. And the 'Memory Tree' might be the Forest of Myth. But as for 'Sacrifice' and 'Loyal Cerberus.' I don't have a clue."
"Oh, splendid. By all means, let us undertake a murderous rampage."
"We kill them or they kill us. ...Besides, it's the only way to reach the Shadowlord."
"It won't be easy."
"Kill Shades and save my daughter. Easiest thing in the world."
"But...but how can you even be sure that she's-"
"Because she is! All right!?"
"So the Junk Heap and the Forest of Myth, right? I'm on my way."
"Please be careful."
Nier turns to leave...
"The villagers know how much they've sacrificed, and they're thankful. It's just...they're scared. You know? People can't change overnight. I'll hurry them along the best I can, but can you please give them a little more time?"
So, we now have a new plot MacGuffin goal of keys to the Shadowlord's Castle. The Junk Heap and the Forest of Myth are pretty clear areas of interest. And though Popola may not realize it, I am pretty sure the Cerberus thing refers to the extremely hostile wolves about the desert wasteland around Facade. Or else an extremely personality lacking goth Turk's oversized gun... Sacrifice is rather ominous, though... Not sure about that one.
At this point of the game, Nier is given the option as to his next step in the journey. We can either travel to the text adventure woods or the robot mountain... So I am going to-
Decide for myself. We've got like a half dozen sidequests involving the Junk Heap simmering on the back burner. And I am in no mood to go text adventuring again at present. Besides, we've got more than enough materials to upgrade a few weapons. And it will be nice to see how those kids in the weapon store held up in the last five years...
So, the Junk Heap it is! Terrific...
Shade Kainé Full Battle
Kaine Battle Highlights (You should probably watch this. Emil has a really great voice actress.)