Part 69: Episode LXIV: Broken FingerEpisode LXIV: Broken Finger
Music: Junk Heap Field
Well, that was some uplifting stuff... I suppose we ought to go see how Gideon is doing these days on his own. Maybe lend him a hand with the business....? Oh... Too soon?
Well, the kid has gotten pretty big in the last five years. And he's not dead, so that's a start. There is one very easy to miss little detail about post-timeskip Gideon. You see his arm there...? Looks really slender, doesn't it?
That's because it's not his arm. It's a robot arm connected at the elbow. It doesn't work or anything, that technology is long lost. Gideon just duct taped a sad little metal arm to replace his old one. So, what happened to the original fleshy arm...? Well, the game never even acknowledges the metal limb and we only see Gideon outside of this shop all of once the entire game post-timeskip, hence why it's so easy to overlook. So, of course there is no explanation given... But, if you really wanna know, Grimoire Nier says...
He went nutty after tearing his big brother's half severed arm off and started cutting up his own arm. He went a bit too far one day and ended up losing the limb. Post timeskip Gideon and mental stability are not on speaking terms...
"You're the little one, aren't you? ...You've grown."
"How fares your brother?"
"My brother... My brother's been dead for four years."
"I see. Please forgive the question."
"Look, I need to ask you something."
"What is it?"
"You heard any rumors about Shades around here? Not the little guys. I'm looking for one that's unusually big and strong."
"No, I haven't heard about anything like that. But I haven't really been listening. I just...I just want to destroy robots. Rip 'em up..."
"Uh...okay. Well, never mind, then. Sorry to bug ya."
Nier and Weiss turn to leave Mr. Battlebot...
"I recently got my hands on a weapon. ...A very powerful weapon. I thought you might get some use out of it."
Oh...well, spiffy. This kid ain't too bad. Fuck robots anyway. What good have they ever done for anyone? Always going around stealing people's bodies and turning their dads into furries. Jerks. Oh well, let's take a look at our new charity donation...
Good gravy! Hymir's...Finger...? My GOD man! What did they do to you?! You maniacs! You blew it up! Ah, damn you! God damn you all to hell!
If you'll recall, Hymir's Finger was the giantest of all the giant fuck-off swords in Drakengard and bar none the mightiest of Caim's arsenal. It was obtained by taking on an entire demi-human coliseum death match's stable of warriors, murdering them all, then taking on the owner of said coliseum and murdering him and all his friends in under five minutes time. That runt Seere was also incidentally rescued from being crucified... That kid was the worst.
"Yeah, it's pretty beat-up. I mean, there's potential, but it's fairly powerless right now."
"Can you repair it?"
"I can repair anything with the proper material."
"If you'll fix it, I'll get the parts."
"Eee hee! I'm so glad I decided not to throw this out! I'm gonna need some memory alloy. Only the real big enemies in the second basement level have them, so watch yourself. Also, here's the passcode to get down there. Use it on the elevator." <Gideon hands over the B2 Keycard>
"You got it."
While I was in the neighborhood, I upgraded Beastlord since I had the materials floating around. Gold ore is an uncommon drop out in the fields. And a complex machine is a rare drop from mid-boss Shades. I got this one from the mini-boss of the Lost Shrine revisit. Works for me.
That said, I do not relish a return visit to the Junk Heap. Doubly so seeing as this is not the proper boss battle including visit to the dungeon for the next key of the Shadowlord's Castle elevator. This is just a mandatory sidequest to repair a broken weapon for the ill-named Two Brothers Weaponry.
Music: The Wretched Automatons
"He died protecting the only family he had left. ...It's a damn shame."
Emil decides to lighten the mood with another subject. He fails. This grinding sidequest was the bane of my existence the other night...
"Yeah. There was this old lady that helped me once, and I'm fixing the lighthouse where she used to live."
"Exactly who did the helping is a matter of debate, but regardless..."
"Wow, a lighthouse keeper! That sounds kind of romantic!"
"Indeed, she was nothing if not a hopeless romantic."
"Yeah, I guess she was."
So, now Nier and the gang have access to B2 - the lowest level of the Junk Heap. Consequently, it is also larger than the rest of the other levels combined. Terrific...
"-for the sake of his sibling. ...Do you think he was ever truly happy?"
"He was able to help shape the life of his brother. I'm sure that was reward enough."
"You mean the lad that has sent us on a rather transparent ploy to go destroy a multitude of hated robots in order to obtain scrap to repair a trashed sword he was ready to discard?"
Like I said, Junk Heap B2 is massive! And this map isn't all of it. Luckily, today the gang is only tackling the northern half of the area. Particularly, the goal is the large square "MID-BOSS GOES HERE" area in the northwestern part of the map.
If you are exploring the Junk Heap in general, but ESPECIALLY this second level basement, you will quickly come to know and hate this message from Weiss. Every time a door locks shut and there is a mandatory gauntlet of droids to scrap, Weiss sees it fit to stop for a moment and inform Nier the doors are locked. Every. Single. TIME! He apparently has no faith in the fighter he hangs out with 24/7 for the last six years to figure out that when the doors shut and killer robots stream out, they all need to be destroyed.
Just on this trip to 1/3 of the B2 area, Weiss does this NINE TIMES. And even on return visits to the same area where the door has locked every time before, he'll still feel obligated to announce (and wait for a prompt) the room's intentions.
I hate the Junk Heap...
"-clump of iron."
"Who cares if it's smart when it can smash you into a pancake!?"
"No mere machine can hope to prevail against our intelligence and skill!"
"Wow, thanks, book. I feel so much better already."
As before, Dark Hand is definitely the best bet when dealing with robots in the Junk Heap. It is almost always a one-shot kill on all common mobs and can destroy multiple clustered together enemies. The only downside is it uses a descent chunk of MP with each punch, so it cannot be spammed quite as much as other magic attacks. There is also the fact that robots lack blood, so no quick refills.
While we're down in Da Heap, it is high time to know your robots! If you aren't listening to my instructions to drop BS sidequests, then the Junk Heap is going to quickly become your home away from home. And if you're going for that 100% weapons upgrade achievement/trophy...god help you. I've gone over a few robots briefly, so this will be a slight recap on some. Feel free to skip ahead if you don't want to hear Robotics 101.
First up, we have Turrets. Turrets are worthless. They're easy to kill with just a single melee strike or two, have a very simple attack pattern of slowly strafing the room with energy balls, and most importantly: they do not drop items! Next!
Yellow Drones. These are the most common enemies of the Junk Heap. They attack with lighting blasts that shoot from their frontside. This attack is really aggravating since it is a constant stream of energy that packs a solid punch. Also, they possess the annoying attribute of auto-targeting Nier and always facing in his direction, making a frontal assault impossible with melee.
These buggers drop Broken Arms, Broken Lenses, and Broken Antennas.
Next up is Red Drones. These jerks are less common. They attack via slow moving projectiles. They work just like any other energy balls in the game and can just be swatted away, making them much less threatening than the standard variety of droids.
These junkers drop Stripped Bolts, Broken Arms, Broken Antennas, Broken Motors, rarely Mysterious Switches, and very rarely Titanium Alloy.
Last but not least are flying drones. These are the most annoying of the drone trio, as they possess both the projectile attack from afar and lightning attack when up close in addition to increased mobility and difficulty to hit. Dark Hand still works pretty well, but if they are flying too close or too high away it can also easily miss.
These propeller heads drop Broken Arms, Broken Batteries, Broken Motors, Stripped Bolts, and rarely Machine Oil. That last one you'll probably hate farming...
The path to the mid-boss room is rather uneventful save a middle area that is a series of twisting corridors with smelting pit drops and mazes of crates. It's not very interesting or anything, but at least it is a rare change from the standard straight hallways and rectangular rooms, hmm?
A ton of dead robots and Grimoire Weiss saying rooms are locked later...
Our target today in order to obtain the Memory Alloy is the P-33 drone. You might remember seeing this goofy looking tin man back during Gideon and Jakob's happy little flashback. This is not the same P-33. That one was special. We'll see him another time predictably enough as the boss of the Junk Heap Part 2. Why am I even spoiling this...? This is just a standard issue P-33. He's kind of a nuance.
The P-33's standard attack is stomping the ground and creating a 180 degree shockwave across the chamber. This attack differs from most shockwave fireballs in that the trail it leaves behind still counts for a second or two after the main fireball passes. So, Nier cannot just double jump over the main shockwave, he must also avoid landing where the individual blasts from the stomp have traveled.
This isn't too hard to avoid if Nier keeps his distance. But up close, things get far more hairy as there is basically nowhere to safely land. In addition, it can easily juggle half of Nier's health bar off if he gets hit up close and bounced several times across the room. Just one hit from this is enough to take off a fifth of Nier's health. So, it behooves our burly hero not to get smacked about by the same blow. It's also unblockable if you were wondering.
The robotic man also has a secondary close-quarters shockwave it will use if Nier attempts to melee him. This one is an area of effect attack that will engulf the ground around the robot, making close quarters combat impossible.
Lastly, the mid-boss has a quite silly looking spinning fireball whirlwind where it sticks its arms around and twirls its torso while firing energy all around it. These act like standard energy orbs. I think you kids all know how those work by now.
So, the key to defeating the P-33 Drone is to use distant attacks like Dark Lance and Dark Blast. The latter is surprisingly potent if you use the button tapping trick (the first shot of Dark Blast is 3x stronger than holding the button. So rapid trigger shots make for a much more damaging offensive measure.)
Eventually, the P-33 Drone will fall and give up a Memory Alloy. Indeed, this one was nice enough to give me two. The first one was scripted as soon as the mid-boss began exploding. The second one popped out when it finished erupting in flame. I'm not complaining.
P-33 Drones respawn every time the gang enters the Junk Heap. They always drop one of three rare materials. Most commonly, they'll give up Titanium Alloy. Rarer are Memory Alloys and Large Gears. There are three P-33 Drones wandering around in the B2 Level and they always spawn in the exact same place. Good to remember...
The gang returns with the Memory Alloy to Gideon in the armory...
Music: Junk Heap Field
"I'll start upgrading your weapon right away. I won't charge you for it, either, since you helped me out."
Some time later...
Long story short: It's going to take longer than Gideon expected to repair Iron Will. He'll send Nier a letter at his house when it is ready. Oh well...
That letter will never come until another Main Quest segment is completed. We already know about the Forest of Myth's rather likely involvement with affairs. Going to bug Popola for guidance will trigger the Facade questline.
So I'll let...myself decide we're going to the Forest of Myth next. Act 2's return to the text adventure woods is rather short segment whereas Facade's events are uhh...a bit more involving... So, who's up for one last text adventure?!
Oh, quit your bitching, Weiss!
Junk Heap Return Highlights