The Let's Play Archive

NieR: Automata

by The Dark Id

Part 139: Episode CXXXIV: The Ascent

Episode CXXXIV: The Ascent

Music: Bipolar Nightmare (Instrumental)

Video: Click to view boss battle

Is this thing SERIOUSLY still kicking!?
Speculation: It is driven by remaining data located within enemy servers.
So this just keeps going until I kill ‘em all!?
We... we are... Net... work...

Ko-Shi is back for a rematch. Or err... I suppose a proper boss fight since it’s bringing a bit more to the table than sitting there and lazily launching the occasional missile barrage.

For instance, this time it can summon Linked-sphere Type machines to tag in and provide support in the form of energy orb spam with a side of horizontal swipes if A2 lingers near ‘em for too long. Unlike most Linked-sphere Types, they are real easy to take down since they’re almost entirely stationary and we can simply lock on and dump all our Pod Fire into ‘em until they’re out of our hair.

An... droids... Bonds... are lost... Someone... this hole... Fill in this hole...
This is messed up. What the hell is this thing going on about?
Analysis: It appears to be a leak of the enemy’s past memories.

Ko-Shi has acquired the ability to shoot concentrated beams out of its front arms and uses ‘em to just... kinda slowly sweep the entire area. They’re easily avoided by just having A2 jump over ‘em. Maybe double jump for safety. Double jump and air dash is just overkill, frankly.

The spider-mecha also possesses a shockwave attack that only goes across the length of the center of the room. This is evaded by err... just not standing in the center of the room when it raises its arms above its head. Even a dimwit like A2 can figure that one out.

After dropping to 75% HP, Ko-Shi once more disengages from battle and ropes off the ascending platform. We really need to stop letting that thing do that. It’s getting old.

But don’t worry about that for a minute. You see, there’s gimmick to this sequence. Remember how 9S flew off in the final remaining YoRHa Flight Unit in existence earlier? Well he’s back now.

And we’re now swapping over to playing as him. You didn’t think we were going to close out NieR: Automata without at least one more shmup sequence, now did you? But that’s not all. We wouldn’t want to let 9S feel left out for the penultimate boss battle.

So hell, let’s just give him a spider-mecha to fight too. Meet Ro-Shi, named for the Japanese pronunciation of Laozi the ancient Chinese philosopher and founder of Taoism. Sure, why not?

Become a god, become a god, become a god, who has become?

Ro-Shi doesn’t have much in the way of attacks initially. It’s content to just slide back and forth while spamming energy orbs in all directions along 9S’s path.

But that’s fine. 9S doesn’t have time for this bullshit either and quickly drains this new challenger’s HP to 75% as well. Which means...

It’s back to A2 again, who finds herself busy fighting the last common machine lifeforms left in the Tower that they could dig up and throw in her path to stop the androids from reaching the Tower’s summit and err...

Umm... Well...



...We don’t actually have a good reason to climb the Tower, do we? I mean, 9S knows about the (assumed) plan to blow up the moon with the Tower’s launching mechanism and besides that he just wants to kill every machine he can get his hands on. A2 just kinda showed up because it was open and she wasn’t doing anything better and now things have just gotten a wee bit out of hand.

But enough about A2 smashing some machine jobbers. Back to 9S.

In this phase, Ro-Shi begins getting somewhat more mobile and sweeps the area with energy orbs along with summoning some Small Flyers to offer support. Given Flight Units can spam sword swipes indefinitely while pumping out bullets infinitely, it’s not the most effective of tactics. And once it drops to 50% HP...

Become as gods!
As gods! As gods! gods!
Lose what is precious... Lost... destroyed...
So we destroy you too...

Music: Bipolar Nightmare (Vocal)

What’s all this junk?
Speculation: It is a resource of some kind.
Used to make what?

Well, if they need more scrap metal, we can help out on that front. I hope there are giant recycling plants on both sides of the war efforts given it’s been 5000+ years now of constant warfare between two robot factions.

You still fighting that spider-bot, 9S? Yeah. Good luck with that. I’m gonna be real... I didn’t miss the lack of shmup segments in most of Route C... Those were already getting fairly long in the tooth by the Route B Grün battle redux.

Despite the warning of Ko-Shi’s return after a couple rounds of machine lifeform jobbers, A2 is actually treated to being surrounded by Linked-sphere Type machines all ready to make her life difficult.

But that’s OK. A2 is also adept at making others’ lives difficult. Just ask Pod 042. That said, A2 needs to clear at least two of the sides of the lift of machine lifeforms before the main event shows up to his own boss fight.

Hiya, Ko-Shi. I’m really unclear how you’re keeping pace with a lift that is booking upward non-stop. Then again, I’m not sure how this lift has been going diagonally in one direction for like five minutes straight now. The geometry specifications of that compared to what we’ve seen of the Tower seem off. Is this like the compressed space 18.37 mile runway from the climax of Fast & Furious 6?

It’s worth noting that every couple of minutes the action will switch over to 9S, who is still fighting Ro-Shi. Except the minimal damage cap against it is 50% total HP, which the flight unit can burn through in no time. A2, on the other hand, needs to hit a 33% remaining HP threshold on Ko-Shi to progress to the next stage of this battle. So it’s entirely possible to have 9S just dicking around for 30 seconds not making a dent before swapping back over to A2 as the game waits for her to get her shit together.

When both androids hit a third remaining HP on their respective spider-bots, the battle shifts to a new phase. Ro-Shi ducks into a hole in the Tower’s shell towards the summit and 9S pursues inside.

We now switch to a behind-the-back camera perspective the game hasn’t used for Flight Units since the very beginning of Route B when 9S was getting a hacking tutorial taking down the Abandoned Factory’s defenses.

Sing... a song... Dedicate... now... We are machines. We are machines. You are androids. You are androids. Mutual enemies. Doomed to fight. Why do you live? Why do we exist? I see... light. The light. We will soar through the sky.

Ro-Shi sounds like it is having a bit of a time after its central network administrators had an AI civil war on their server. Real high turnover rate being machine lifeform network admins. Ro-Shi copes with this existential crisis by putting on a colorful but ineffective laser light show for its android guest.

It then resorts to its twin machine’s old trick of launching a bunch of semi-homing missiles and hoping for the best. Given the relatively greater distance, these missiles are a touch trickier to avoid. It doesn’t help the camera is locked onto focusing upon Ko-Shi so they cannot easily be swat/fire out of the air from the sides. Also there’s no Y-axis movement so any rockets coming from above or below just have to be sidestepped with no means to destroy ‘em.

This time around 9S also needs to deplete his spiderbot’s total hit points to 33% to get on par with A2’s damage rate. As soon as he hits that, the battle immediately progresses to its next phase.

Ko-Shi does what these last two jerkass oversized orbs do best and buggers off to fight another day. 9S pursues. I like to think 9S is swearing his head off at this machine the entire fight and the comms are just busted on this Flight Unit because he half-trashed the thing before hijacking it.

Back on the lift, A2 is now tasked with draining Ko-Shi’s HP to 5% while it continuously summons more Linked-sphere Type back-up.

In this final phase of A2’s bout against mecha Confucius, it gains a ground-pound shockwave. You double-jump forward over it to avoid its effects. Subpar work, Ko-Shi. Please see me after class.

I actually ran into a small, confusing glitch here the first time I played. Ko-Shi’s HP gauge stopped appearing so I figured I wasn’t hurting it. So I decided to fight all the Linked-spheres it was summoning thinking that would let me to damage it again. I mean A2 did mention she needs to kill them all at the beginning of the fight. Makes sense, right? This fight might have continued for ten minutes longer than it should have... I think 9S ought to have reached the moon by the time A2 finished her bit. Whoops...

But we’re not gonna...

...make that error again.

Music: ENDS

Welcome to the top floor of the Tower! The final Flight Unit segment of NieR: Automata is complete. Now to sort out these lousy bootleg Tachikomas.

Even within the realm of the Cutscene Zone™ A2 can’t seem to seal the deal on destroying Ko-Shi.

At the same time, 9S has managed to complete his total destruction of all Flight Units in existence. He’s very vocal about his desire to kill all machine lifeforms but the vendetta against YoRHa’s mechas has been there since the very beginning.

At the very least, 9S has finally managed to stick the landing on bailing out of one of ‘em. I’m honestly disappointed he didn’t faceplant and totally eat shit one last time... for old time’s sake, you know?

Alternatively, Ro-Shi just landing right on top of him would have been an acceptable comedic outcome. But I guess we have to put on our serious faces for the end of the game.

Sup? Are you two gonna play nice or—

Yeah... I thought as much.

Alright, I know you two are heading for an actual fight and unless another pit swallows 9S up and drops him to the bottom of the Tower, we’re not going to avoid that. But err...

...You two might wanna call a truce until you sort out your mutual machine lifeform problem.

Quite literally! Tune in next time for the bout of the century! A2 & 9S vs. Ko-Shi & Ro-Shi! Surely A2 and 9S will be able to bury the hatchet through battling a common en--pfft. I can't even finish typing that thought with a straight face.

Video: Episode 134 Highlight Reel
(You should watch this.)

The Tower Concept Art – Where’s the JRPG where the final battle takes place on top of like a squat two story building?