The Let's Play Archive

NieR: Automata

by The Dark Id

Part 18: Episode XVII: Pipe Purgatory


Episode XVII: Pipe Purgatory

Welp. The desert mission is done...ish. I mean, we were only sent to investigate the “machine surge” not to actually put a kibosh on it. I’d file that as a success. Time to head back to the camp and gear up for... whatever comes next. We don’t really have any active objectives or available sidequests at the moment. If you think about it, nothing is stopping us from just blow off work and going fishing for the rest of the afternoon. But... I suppose there is a war going on... Let’s check back in on Anemone. I’m sure she’d like an update on the goings on. I don’t think the Resistance has email.

Music: Peaceful Sleep (Vocal)

I heard from Jackass about your encounter in the desert. Good work. We don’t have much to offer in thanks, but I’ve readied a room for you here.

Hey, thanks!

Well, I would have preferred a monetary reward or maybe some XP out of the deal. But I suppose rent free housing will suffice. Androids don’t have to worry about asbestos, right? Let’s take a look.

We have permission, remember? Plus, we’ll probably be stationed here for a while, so a bed won’t go amiss.
Then I guess there’s no point turning it down!

I’ve played my fair share of post-apocalyptic games and these accommodations are significantly less shitty than I was expecting. Let’s lay down some ground rules here if we’re going to be roommates, 9S. The big bed with the trunk big enough to stuff a corpse or two into and the ample space? That’s 2B’s bed.

This dank corner with the shoebox surrounded by rotting books and some wet cardboard boxes? Welcome to your new home away from home, 9S.

Now go stand guard outside and analyze birds or whatever you Scanner model dweebs do in your off-time. 2B had a long day of fighting weird slippery nude dudes and doesn’t want to be disturbed for a few hours. Go buy an alarm clock chip and wake us up by noon. Not a minute later or you’re getting reported as being in dereliction of duties to YoRHa command!

A couple hours later...

Before we depart the camp for... err... whatever it is we’re meant to be doing at the moment, we should probably take the time to do some upgrading and maintenance.

We’ve gotten a fairly sizable war chest junking all of those machine lifeforms out in the desert. Plus another 8,000 G from pawning off the oil slick fish we acquired. That’s more than enough to make some significant improvements to 2B’s efficiency.

Our first priority should always be the Maintenance Shop and its assorted upgrades. We couldn’t do much here early. Time to fix that.

We have acquired Pod C and it can now join Pod A in never getting upgraded in the remote future. Those five Simple Gadgets we got were from that one sidequest from the Commander. Those rarer than diamonds otherwise. Ditto with Pure Water and most of the other junk necessary here.

Now that we have a second Pod, it’s in our best interest to purchase a new Pod Program to equip on it. Each Pod can be slotted with its own Pod Program and they all have individual cool-down timers. I thought the Hammer kind of sucked personally, but I didn’t give it much of a chance. So we’ll roll with that for a little bit.

The Hammer Pod Program err... well, it sort of does what it says on the box. It produces a comically oversized hammer that wallops the ground in front of it. Charging up the program causes TWO hammers to double-tap the same area. Meh. I miss Dark Hand. A blood magic doom fist uppercut was much more satisfying as a high impact, close range melee magic attack.

While we’re here, I’m also going to nab the first three +8 Storage upgrades for our Chips. That will give us a way bigger upgrade than anything else available at the moment.

I suppose we can briefly touch on the Fuse system now that we have a number of Chips to work with now. See, first we’re going to have to go level up our S-Link with 6O or the Commander to augment the Arcana of th—wait no. That’s not quite this game.

Via the Maintenance Shop here (also there’s one on the Bunker that I swear is open for about 40 minutes the entire 60 hours it took me to 100% complete the game) we can Fuse chips we’ve collected from enemy drops or sidequest rewards. We can only fuse Chips of the same level.

For instance, we’ve got two Evade Range Up +1 chips. One has a storage cost of 9 and one of 10. We can slam those two together to turn them into the next level of chip. The fused Chips will generally inherit the higher value of the two. There’s actually a big dumb formula apparently dictating the specifics of a fusion. But I’m not getting into that right now because it matters FUCK ALL at this point. Everything we have will be easy outclassed by drops as we progress up until very late game.

It is worth mentioning that any Chips with a diamond next to ‘em mean they’re the maximum efficiency for the level they’re at. I’m fairly certain the game never bothers to mention that! If we ever get lucky enough to get two diamond chips of the same level, those can be fused for a really nice, super-efficient chip of the next level.

My Chip loadout right now is:

That’s enough Chip and Pod shuffling for now. Let’s move on top weapon inventory. This first weapons vendor’s stock never updates. This is it! This is all he ever sells. There’s a couple more vendors later in the game with different stock. We’ve got some spare cash still. Let’s pick up a new weapon!

Beastbane is another Small Sword for our growing stock of basic blades. Upgrading it to Level 2 results in Endurance Up, a Defense buff while it’s equipped. At Level 4, it gains “Beast’s Roar” which adds the claw effect from Zero in Drakengard 3’s Intoner Mode to slashes, resulting in a ton of extra damage if it connects.

It’s worth mentioning this is also a returning weapon from the original NieR. And it was also sold by the very first blacksmith available in the starting village early in the game and was the strongest weapon around for the first half of the game. But that’s not fun trivia. Now this...

Beastbane posted:

Once upon a time, there were three princesses. The middle princess wasn't very bright, but was renowned by all as a great beauty. Once she came of age, she was married off to the king of a neighboring nation.

The neighboring king adored his new wife and treasured her looks above all else. He gave the middle princess six new dresses and eight fresh flowers every day, and his love caused her beauty to shine all the more.

The middle princess did all she could to remain beautiful for her king, but she knew time would eventually catch up with her, as it did for all. So after much hard thought, she developed a cunning plan.

The middle princess had herself stuffed and mounted so she could remain beautiful for all time. The king wept joyful tears at the sight, but alas, two years later, war broke out, and her body was crushed under the rubble of the castle.

Sure. A princess giving herself the Chief Brian Irons special. At least that’s unique as far as horrible deaths go in Weapon Stories. That about concludes our business in the Resistance Camp. Let’s head on out where...

Music: Rays of Light (Quiet)

This is 9S. Go ahead.
I have an incoming message for 2B and 9S from the Commander. Initiating playback.

Their black boxes are online, so we presume they’re still alive. We’ve tracked the location of their signals, so I need all YoRHa units on the surface to head over and investigate.
End transmission. *radio cuts off*
Hmm. I heard something about that back at the Resistance camp.
Target location confirmed. I’m worried about the other androids... We should probably check this out as soon as possible.

Our new destination is to the north, smack dab between the Resistance Camp and the Save Terminal by the tower.

One of the crude Resistance level boundaries barriers now has a bit stripped away allowing access to a new region to the east. Hopefully, our androids are better dressed for this mission than the desert fiasco.

Looks like our surface route’s been cut off. Maybe we can get through from underground.

Welp. No avoiding it. It’s an inevitability in any vaguely urban setting in a video game Who is ready for a sewer level...?

Music: ENDS

Those machines out in the desert looked just like androids, right?
But we androids were modeled after our human creators. So why would machines try to look like us?
There’s no point trying to work out unsolvable problems.
I suppose...

There aren’t actually any enemies in the sewer zone and it’s just 20 second long loading area masking buffer region. But that doesn’t mean the sewer is devoid of any interesting elements.

Such as fishing! Of COURSE we can fish in several millennia old raw sewage. There’s not any fish down here. But there are some key goodies. Such as...

A rusted old rocket launcher... No. That’s not what I was after here... Let’s try that again!

...No. That’s a tire. How did they even FIT this down into the sewer? There’s a new weapon that can be obtained here by fishing. I caught it in like 3-4 tries the first time I played. Oh well, let’s look at the junk we obtained while I do that...

I hope someday there’s a supplementary story about a plucky post-apocalyptic android trucker.

It can be accompanied by tale of the disciplinary committee tasked with punishing improper disposal of shitty old gas tanks. It’s very serious political issue in the YoRHa power structure.

And of course the mystery of the machine lifeform’s collection of old car batteries and the conspiracy within.

Finally, this is that NIN64 item I told you that got patched out. They in truth just changed the name and limited the areas where it spawns. Yep, sure looks like they’re dunking on a shitty dead Nintendo console with this picture of a RPG launcher.

Anyway, about that weapon...


The Iron Pipe is the weapon in question I sought during this sewer fishing escapade. Yeah, sure... I only need a bit of footage for this next update. Shouldn’t take long, I told myself... Goddammit!

The Iron Pipe is probably one of the worst weapons in the game because... well... it’s a big iron pipe. It only does a two hit swipe combo for light hits and one wallop for heavy. It cannot use any of the fancy weapon YoRHa teleportation business because... it’s just a pipe. The first upgrade to it ups the chance of critical hits. At max level, it gains a high chance of stunning enemies. This weapon was in the original NieR. Indeed, it was technically the very first weapon used by the Original Papa Nier during the game’s prologue. Gestalt Papa Nier also gained it via some weird time traveling sidequest. So what’s it doing here...?

Iron Pipe posted:

Dad, if you're cold, I can give you my hat. You're the best father in the world, after all.

Dad, if you're hungry, you can have my cookie. You're my favorite person in the world, after all.

Dad, if you're scared, I can sleep by your side. You're my closest friend in the world, after all.

So please don't go anywhere. All right Dad? Don't leave your Yonah all alone. ...Okay?

“Definitely don’t turn into some kind of shadow lord and kidnap my cloned doppelganger in a bid to be reunited with me that causes the potential end of humanity, dad. I know this is oddly specific, but...”

That said, I do like the idea this particular pipe has been eternally enchanted to survive the eons just because the original Nier decided to bust some Shades' heads with it right when he became the Shadowlord.

We’re not quite done in the sewer yet. At the end of the linear path of intact tunnels, we find another ladder leading to the surface. That is our destination. But...

Just beyond that ladder is some wreckage 2B and 9S can just squeeze through leading to a SECOND ladder to the surface. If climb this, we find ourselves... a forest clearing with some strange hollowed out tree bound together by massive chains. This looks like the entrance to a Dark Souls boss arena.

However, inside we discover a very video gamey glowing pedestal with another new weapon stuck into it. This is Virtuous Dignity, our very first of the Spear class of weapons.

Spears aren’t quite as completely OP as they were in the original Nier, given the emphasis on mobility in this game’s combat systems. But they are still quite good. And they are still incredibly OP in the 2D fighting segments where mobility isn’t a factor and long range stabbing is an extremely effective technique. Virtuous Dignity gains an increase to its Attack Speed with its first upgrade and Holy Blessing (increased attack speed at full HP) at max level.

Now let’s get to the story...

Virtuous Dignity posted:

The elegant white spear was crafted by a tyrant as a gift for his wife-whose parents he had killed years earlier. She slipped it under the bed they shared, then later used it to run him through 30 times.

The spear's second owner was a courageous, bandit-fighting mayor. In her later years, her strength faded, until one night, a pack of young thugs surrounded her and took all that she had-including her life.

The third owner was a greedy merchant who lived to swindle customers. Soon, she found herself shunned and penniless, and so decided to hang herself. The unused spear rested in a corner of her home as decoration.

The fourth owner was a meek young boy who wanted to aid his sickly younger sister. He gave all to this cause - including his very existence and that of all else in the world.

A mariticide, a gang rape/murder, a suicide, and a Brother Nier reference. Quite the résumé on this spear! It’ll go places on that record.

Doubling back to the early pipe we passed and climbing up, our androids find themselves at the edge of a forest with what sounds like explosions or artillery firing in the distance. Alright, 9S. I didn’t want to say anything. But YoRHa is starting to complain about all the budget we’re chewing through replacing android bodies. So try not to take a RPG or an anti-tank round to the face as soon as we round the corner, eh? We're nearly at our partnership's monthly maximum after you let 2B rip out her OS Chip and did nothing to prevent it.

Or... well... cancel that. It’s not enemy fire. It’s err... fireworks.

Tune in next time when 9S and 2B take an all-expense paid vacation to the Amusement Park zone as Yoko Taro’s wild ride continues!

Video: Episode 17 Highlight Reel

City Ruins Concept Art - The one city below Imperial Notspain in poorly kept infrastructure.