The Let's Play Archive

NieR: Automata

by The Dark Id

Part 24: Episode XXIII: Mars People

Episode XXIII: Mars People

Music: Rays of Light (Quiet)

Welp... Our mission was to destroy the Goliath-class machine lifeforms attacking the city ruins. Mission accomplished! We were given zero mission parameters regarding minimalizing collateral damage. So I don’t even want to hear it about the several city blocks that were just obliterated. We did our job.

2B’s radio beeps with a message from the Commander.

For the first time in centuries, we’ve intercepted a signal belonging to the aliens. These are the creatures that are in direct command of the machine lifeforms of this planet. If we can destroy them, we can end this long and arduous war once and for all! Our intel team is hard at work attempting to analyze the source of the signal, but we’re not there yet. We need more data. All YoRHa units are hereby ordered to prioritize data collection above all else. We can’t let this chance slip through our fingers!
...Glory to mankind.

But it seems to be underground. Like, waaay underground.
Guess we’ll see once we get there.
You’re not much for plans, are you, 2B?

Commander, you could have just asked us to go check out that signal instead of putting out an all-points bulletin to every YoRHa unit in the field. We’re like two city blocks away. You’re going to make those poor YoRHa soldiers investigating that oil spill in the Desert huff it all the way out here for nothing now. Oh well, not our problem.

What is our problem is the mess left behind by the previous battle. Several blocks of the city have now fallen into a massive sink hole thanks to that detonating Engels unit. At least they both didn’t explode. That other one got trashed pretty close to the Resistance Camp. The camp itself is fine. Everyone over there is just kinda relieved the crazy ass character action game protagonists with their top of the line twin-stick shooter crafts were in the area to help. Two Goliaths were a wee bit above their skill level.

Analysis: It is a cave-in caused by the collapse of an open space underground.
Why is there such a huge cavern beneath the city?

I guess that’s what we’re about to go find out, buddy. Honestly, I’m glad this area is now here. Mostly because running around the early parts of the intact city ruins is really weird after you’ve spent about 90% of the game used to this huge ass hole in the middle of town. Also, when I said to mainline the plot until you’re tasked to investigate a large hole because that’s where fast travel is unlocked.

Guess what this hole is!

Before we can advance further into this hole, we’ve got a new enemy to contend with first. It is quite possibly the most obnoxious one in the early game! To the point I’d actively tell you to just fuck these guys and run past them until later, in which there is a method to deal with ‘em 100% easier.

Meet the Link-Sphere Machine Lifeform (Drill Edition.) They are weird flying snake things that float randomly about the area, until they spot an android. At which point, they’ll float randomly around the area vaguely in the direction of our duo. They don’t really have any set patterns. They just kinda go and do what they want whenever.

The glowing orange yellow sphere along their body, for lack of a better term, is the solitary weak point on the Linked-Sphere machines. Everything else is completely bullet and melee proof. Missiles are 100% worthless against these machines. Don’t even bother. Maybe one out of every dozen missiles will actually connect. The best way to deal with these machines is to just back off, make a wide circle away from ‘em, and fire continuously. If we’re lucky, they won’t start spinning in circles making the weak point impossible to hit for a while.

We could attempt getting close and melee the Linked-Sphere machine. Except, when close their movements become extremely erratic and all the other Linked-Sphere boys in the neighborhood will come to create a massive clusterfuck. Most pressingly, the Link-Sphere machines’ hurtbox are kinda horrendous! Like the area where one will hurt 2B and where the actual enemy model is located can seemingly just jump feet away from each other. And 2B can easily be comboed with hits since at times (but not always) the entire Linked-Sphere will deal damage for no particular reason (they're technically electrified but the model doesn't reflect that half the time.) So that’s fun! Everyone likes to be stun-locked by a new enemy!

Nothing about fighting these guys is fun or satisfying. They have zero reaction to being attacked until they explode on death. They’re just terribly designed enemies that thankfully don’t show up too often. There is some kinda clause in Platinum Games’ contracts that state they have to have one terrible unfun shitty enemy type per game.

But we’re done with that. It’s time to go deeper!

There must have been a hollow down there this whole time.

New Music: Widespread Illness (Quiet)

Welp. 2B ain’t much for plans. So let’s just hop down in this hole and see what’s crackin’. Sure, there’s currently no way back up and it’s been established that radio communications are very unreliable underground. But pfft. Push comes to shove, 2B can just rip her brain out again and reload an earlier save. It’s fine.

It’s seldom been mentioned, and I think this is the first time the game gives a proper tutorial prompt for it, but the Pods have a flashlight ability. You’d think they would programmed advanced war machine androids with night vision capabilities, especially when they’re all already wearing augmented reality goggles. But what do I know?

It wouldn’t be a Platinum game if there wasn’t poorly documented features. There is a secondary function to the flashlight. If we flash our light in a machine’s face repeatedly like a dick, that’s actually this game’s taunt feature. Doing this will cause steam to comically shoot out of the targeted machine’s head and their eyes to glow burning red.

At this point, the taunted machines will get far more aggressive with their attacking. More importantly, they both deal and receive double damage while taunted. We can gain chips that up those Taunting percentages to the point it’s possible to do some serious ass damage on taunted enemies. They just, ya know, never explain HOW you taunt and flashing a light repeatedly in a machine’s eyes is less than obvious. Like, I didn’t know about this feature until well over half way through the game!

Despite having just collapsed shortly ago, the machine have already set up burning torches to light parts of the subterranean corridors. I guess the aliens didn’t bother programming them with night vision either. I know it’s eternally sunlight on this half of the planet. But c’mon... indoor areas do exist, guys.

Music: Widespread Illness (Vocal)

There is one additional new enemy to be found in these mines: the Sphere-Shaped Machine Lifeform (Drill Edition.) These guys err... well, they’ve got a drill affixed to the top of their heads and can fly. They use this combination exactly like you’d expect them to do.

And that’s about it... Evade the torpedo attack and you’re good! They’re very slow to attack in the first place, so more likely than not it’ll be a very short existence before meeting an android and being scrapped. Unlike their snake-like dick big brothers, everything damages the little drill guys and they have very low HP.

Further into the tunnels, the path splits. One dead ends at an elevator door we cannot access at this time. We’ll just add that to the ever growing mental list of things we’ll remember for later.

The other path leads deeper into the mines, in which we find a futuristic set of stairs leading into an ominous looking doorway... One might say it is downright alien looking. Also, there is a whole mess of dead machine lifeforms littering the path here on out.

The corridor continues onward into a few Halo ass looking identical rooms, still lined with dead machines, until we come upon...

I don’t know. There’s nothing like it in the database.

Guys, I’m not going to tell you how to do your jobs. But I can spot a video game boss arena from a hundred paces and this is DEFINITELY going to be a boss arena. I hope you’re ready to Zandatsu E.T. or Red Hot Kick Alf in a minute here.

As the androids approach the perimeter of the room, a mechanism activates sliding open the walls of the room, letting in sunlight and revealing...

...Giant shriveled up scrotums. Err... Like I’m not projecting here, right? That’s just a giant penis with eye sockets, a couple nose holes and tentacles coming out of the bottom... I mean... That's what we're all looking at right here, right?

2B! Look!

9S, look man. I know you don’t wanna look at the extraphallicterrestrials but we should probably investigate these masters of our sworn enemy in the ten millennium war being kinda dead down here. I mean, what if there’s more still aro—

Oh... Huh... Welp... The aliens. They’re all dead down here, aren’t they?

...Err. Thanks for clearing that up. Hey there, boys. I see you’ve learned about leather pants, tribal tats and getting haircuts. Also talking in complete sentences. That’s cool. So you guys are doing OK? What’s umm...

Tune in next time when a civil discussion between great butt androids and great abs machines in a room full of great big dead dicks...

Video: Episode 23 Highlight Reel

Alien Ship Concept Art – A little more rigidly structured than what we got in the end.