Part 91: Episode LXXXV: The Final FacadeEpisode LXXXV: The Final Facade
Music: The Prestigious Mask
Welp, we're just about done with adventures in the city of rules. There is one final sidequest available in Facade. It is a rather easy to miss one, at that. This one requires returning to the King's Mansion...
...And then entering the thing, climbing to the roof, and speaking with the King of Facade. But ONLY after the "A Shade Entombed" quest has been completed. Let's see what our pal King Sechs needs today...
Sidequest: Disturbing the Sleep of Kings
(Thanks to those thieves who unlocked the seal, the Barren Temple is crawling with Shades! We need to get in there and seal them away, but they are powerful, and I worry about my people. Plus with the rules and all...)
"Don't worry. We'll take care of it."
"You may rest easy. We're used to this sort of thing by now."
(I wish we could help you for a change.)
(Anyway... Legend has it that the Shades are desecrated forms of the kings that ruled in ancient times. Why would the old kings yearn so much for life that they transformed themselves into those abominations?)
Back to the Barren Temple it is... I knew that first visit was far too short a venture. Oh well. This is the very last time we'll ever need to set foot in this joint for the entirety of NIER. So, let's just get it over with...
Music: The Temple of Drifting Sands
So, you know how I mentioned that those jackass bandits re-armed all the trials (sans block puzzles)? Yeah...guess what this sidequest entails...
That's right! Re-doing all the trials as combat requirements. Unlike the block puzzle variants, these ones are mostly quite simple to complete. The enemies are, for the most part, all common Shades and the trials are all basically a minor nuisance at best.
- Trial Solutions:
- Leaping Rabbit - Why are you even jumping in a battle against common enemies in the first place...?
- Stationary Owl - Done last time.
- Racing Wolf - Done last time.
- Protected Turtle - Why are you even blocking against non-fireball spewing enemies...?
- Magic-Spewing Bat - Fine, Weiss. Take a breather...
- Blade-Wielding Tiger - Alright, Weiss. I'm sitting this one out. Make with the Dark Phantasm.
The only particularly difficult trial of the bunch is Evasive Mouse (i.e. no dodge roll!) Remember how I said one of the trials had a big, badass mid-boss that could kick the ass of the Entombed Shade one...?
Yeah...this is that trial. Probably the strongest non-boss Shade in the game haunts this trial. Not being able to dodge is slightly problematic in this battle.
First of all, it has a giant, highly damaging (with potential to juggle) area of effect attack that damn near fills the entire arena. There's about a half-second between wind-up and attack going off and if you're close to the boss, then you're shit out of luck as you're about to get hit.
The mini-boss also has a near instant charging attack. If you're close to him, fuck you you're getting hit. If you're across the arena, well maybe you'll be able to run out of the way quick enough. Or you could dodge, miss the hit...and start the entire battle over from scratch. Also, did I mention the boss is invincible from the front? Well, not quite. But it has a ridiculous amount of guard power and takes no damage unless you get very lucky and break its block.
The thing also can also smash the ground and summon lava spikes right from out of under Nier's ass. These are slightly easier to run past, as at least Nier has about a second of warning before they explode out of the ground. But, if he's getting harassed by the half dozen helper Shades running around too, it can still be problematic.
Really, the best way to take out this thing is to immediately run at it at the start of the fight and start stabbing the hell out of it. If you're lucky, you can take out half its health bar before having to fight it properly. Thankfully, the thing put all its skill points into attack power and none into physical defense.
Anyhow, that is it for the trials. On the bridge leading toward Shahryar's old digs, there's another one of those mini-boss Shades from the previous update's sidequests, as well as a couple dozen minor ones lending support. But, we actually get the rest of the party and no rules to bind us down. So, it's none too much trouble. Our final goal of the sidequest is to return to the Sealed Verse Boss Room from our first visit. The King wasn't kidding around about purging the entire temple of Shades.
"He's a strong one. We better take our time."
"Wow! No wonder the Masked People couldn't take this guy out!"
"Save that for later, boy! We must stay calm and approach this slowly."
"Calm my ass!"
The final challenge of the Barren Temple revisit is one final bulletstorm Shade (like just minutes ago on the bridge.) This one is quite a few levels higher than the rest and its attacks are quite punishing. In addition, the new boss of the Barren Temple has a half dozen Shaman Shades (read: fireball spamming jerks just like it) alongside it. As a result, this place gets wee bit chaotic with all the energy balls flying about...
...To say the least.
Several hundred fireballs dodged, slashed, and taken to the face along with seven dead Shades later...
Welp, job finished! Cavia mercifully doesn't require the party backtrack all the way across the now empty temple and then the desert in order to leave. They just get warped straight back to the King of Facade for a debriefing. I am wary of Cavia mercy...
Returning to Facade...
The King thanks us for our work in cleaning up the Masked People's must holy place...three times now... No money reward this time, though. The King of Facade has something different...
A brand spankin' new weapon! Oh...wait... It's part of the Labyrinth K-Mart quality series of weapons... Oh well... It looks kinda cool, I guess... Anyway, have one of the very last weapon stories.
Grimoire Nier posted:
The girl had two huge horns. They were just a bit above her ears, and they looked like those of a cow. I saw the root of her horn once and it looked like something that grew out of her skull. Of course, only she was like that. Everyone else was normal. The kid with the horns was small when she was born. Ah, I meant her horns. Well of course. If she had those huge horns, she's not gonna be able to come out of her mom's belly.
You thought that she would be bullied, didn't you? Then you're completely wrong. That child was stronger than anyone in the village. There were no males that could win against that kid. She did all the work that required brute force, and whenever Shades attack the village, she's always the first to fight them. More than that, everyone loved her - she was bright and strong.
But this Shade that attacked one day was powerful. The village men were tossed around like ragdolls, and half of them were dead. She with the horns fought as hard as she could, but even she exhausted her power. At last the Shade took her body and ripped her horns off. Her scream back then was really something. It was a sound that shook the ground. When everything settled down, I went out of my house and saw that both she and the Shade died. Both were bleeding from countless holes throughout their bodies. They…how should I put it…were beautiful, like bright red flowers. Even though that's a pretty insensitive comment.
That's the answer to your first question. Why nobody in this village can hear anything. But I want you to know - none of us blame her. It's much better than being dead. We confirmed with each other in the aftermath, but her last shout seemed to be "Goodbye". I'm proud that the last sounds we ever heard were her words of parting. Really.
I dunno about you, but I'd play a Team ICO and Cavia team-up game. Anyway...
FACADE SIDEQUESTS: 100% COMPLETED!!!!!!
It's about damn ti-hold up... 97%?! There is still 3% of the game's sidequests floating around...?! DOES IT NEVER END?!?!?!
Feh... It must be more of that non-population center crap like Sebastian's pair of quests in the Haunted Manor. Perhaps Devola's List has a listing or two we've overlooked...
Oh, hey. It's the weirdo soldier girl. I almost forgot about her. Maybe's she'll cough up a damn sidequest so I can put this errand boy proceedings behind me forever...
(They've been on the move lately, so I was curious.)
"...Who has been on the move?"
(The townspeople! Are you an idiot or something?)
"Watch out! This thing is a Shade!"
Gah! Infiltrator Shades! Now they're bi-lingual and stealing people's identities! This bodes ill...
The masked soldier transforms into a witch Shade and a whole sizable posse of hostile Shades descends upon the gates of the town. Remember kids, if you see a random stranger wandering out by themselves at odd hours of the day: murder them immediately. They're clearly evil and planning to call their friends and raze your entire town.
"Stop with the bullshit and just KILL THEM ALL!"
"The hussy is correct. We must eliminate these beasts."
"Emil! Watch out!"
Wave after wave of Shades keep spawning into the area during this segment. I guess we accidentally walked in on the Shade assault on Facade. You'd think these new smart, deceptive Shades would start handing out fliers with Nier and the gang's faces with a big warning saying "STAY COOL UNTIL THESE GUYS LEAVE THE AREA!!"
Dozens of dead Shades later...
Music: Shade Battle
"Can't you tell!?"
(We can't let them get into the city! We must stop them here!)
Wolves are one thing, but the King of Facade is NOT putting up with any goddamn Shade invasion on his watch. The Men of the Masked shat the bed last time with defending the city. The King decides it best to prove he's the biggest non-party member badass in the land personally. As such, the King and his entourage enter the battle to help fend off the creatures' assault on Facade.
A big chaotic battle outside the city gates ensues as dozens more Shades join the party. A friggin' mini-boss even shows up in the narrow corridor to Facade half way through the brawl. This is on top of three witches, six shamans, and six or seven standard melee jerks all flooding in the area.
Thankfully, the combined efforts of Team Nier and the folks from Facade are enough to hold back and decimate the Shade's forces. All in a day's work.
Returning to Facade...
(It seems our people owe you another debt, outsider. At this rate, I may have to make you king and be done with it.)
"...It's no big deal. But listen, we've got problems. When we first saw this Shade, it was disguised as one of the Masked People."
(What?! Are you saying that there may be Shades among my own people?)
"It's possible. You probably want to keep an eye out."
(Cursed Shades! I won't let you lay a single claw on my people! Shades don't stand a chance in this city as long as I'm around. By the way, here's a small reward for you. Please, take it.) <Nier receives 30,000 Gold.)
Oh...hey. Look at that. There was a sidequest there after all. One that never gets formally introduced or even named until after it has already been fully completed. Whatever, works for me... However, this only brings our Quest Completion Total to...98%... I guess we're taking that trip back to Devola after all...
Facade Sidquest Wrap-up Banter