The Let's Play Archive

NieR: Automata

by The Dark Id

Part 61: Episode LIX: Watcher

Episode LIX: Watcher

One of those GlaDOS personality cores has really been eating its Wheaties.

New Music: Possessed by Disease (Become as Gods)
(Go listen to this. It’s both a really good boss theme and a version of this track that only plays here.)

Alert: Energy shield detected over enemy unit. Physical defense shield detected. Analysis: Both long- and close-range attacks are ineffective.
Oh, now what?
Large energy supply detected within this factory. Proposal: Energy source should be destroyed.

The beginning of this boss battle is a game of evasion. We cannot damage this obese Tachikoma due to its energy shield. Meanwhile, it makes some half-hearted charge attacks and then goes hog with ground pounds producing rings of damaging energy across the area which 2B must avoid for a bit. The camera automatically assumes the top-down position. So it’s not too bad to get away from this unscathed. After a tiny bit of evasion, 2B decides to phone up 9S and get his ass on handling the machine’s shield power supply.

That Goliath we just encountered—
I got it! I’ve been keeping an eye on you. I’m gonna shut off power to the factory now!
Do it!

In addition to the ground pound energy rings, our new adversary also possesses a butt stomp AOE attack. Despite the severe looking laser light show, it doesn’t do a significant amount of damage. Indeed, this boss’s biggest design flaw is that none of its attacks are particularly damaging for an enemy that lacks much in the way of combination attacks.

After a tiny bit more holding out against the enemy, 9S phones up again with a status update.

90 percent... 92... 95... 98...

Enemy shield deactivated.

Now it’s time for the actual boss battle to begin. Meet So-Shi. This boss machine unit is named after Zhuang Zhou (So-Shi being based on the Japanese pronunciation of Master Zhuang/Zhuangzi) a 4th Century BC Chinese philosopher who wrote one of the founding texts on Daoism. Not sure what that has to do with a spider-tank robot. But there you go.

Now that So-Shi’s shields are down, we have a battle in the darkness against the machine on our hands. The giant glowing eye honestly looks pretty rad in the dark. We’ve seen several of So-Shi’s attacks already and it retains most of ‘em for the real battle.

Adding to its move set, So-Shi now has a forward pouncing slam of its arms, for lack of a better word. Of course it does. What large enemy has neglected to possess a leaping ground pound up to this point? Sure, they’ve all been incredibly easy to evade and this one is no different. But it’s just Goliath-class machine lifeform tradition at this point.

So-Shi can now perform a spinning attack where it extends its legs and twirls like a top on the spherical body. This comes in two varieties. One of ‘em involves the attack lasting for 5-10 seconds as it bounces about the arena. The other is just a brief 180 twirl to reveal its err...

Asshole...? Why did they give this giant orb a rectum? What purpose could that possibly serve? Christ... What a world.

When revealing its booty to 2B, So-Shi can extend a ridged turd drill from its anus rapidly in her direction. It’s difficult to see in the dark. But this is actually one of those horrible linked worm-like machines that hang out in the City Ruins crater and the Forest Zone castle. Just living up this boss machine’s butt now. It’s an odd symbiotic relationship...

Rounding out the Chinese philosopher bot’s move set is a secondary ground slam AOE that will attempt to smash 2B instead of lazily crashing in place. I mean that’s not technically a new move. It’s just an older move that moves. But So-Shi’s lightning display looks really rad in the dark. So there!

As far as attacking So-Shi goes, all points of it are fairly weak now that its impenetrable shield it had up for all of 30 seconds is deactivated. But it does have a clear weak point:

Its legs! Specifically, the metal plates on So-Shi’s legs can be shattered which both results in a nice chunk of damage and stunning the machine. We can just go hog wild smashing all of its leg plating one after another and basically stunlock the boss into oblivion in short order. But there is one last thing to point out.

When stunned, So-Shi actually has an even weaker point that can be exploited for tons of additional damage. That turd tube drill segment has the same glowing weak point as the independent version of enemies. I’m not sure if it can actually be destroyed, as this boss doesn’t have a remarkably large amount of HP and its stunned period isn’t super long. But it sure does hurt it.

Once So-Shi drops to below 5% health, it will retract all of its legs and make a final concentrated effort to just bowl over 2B and generally bounce around the arena.

At this point, all Pod Programs or main weapon fire is useless. We’ve gotta get 2B up in its face and deliver a physical killing blow to end the fight.

Two can play at the cinematic attacking from the darkness game.

Striking a cool pose as a machine explodes behind her is one of the few joys 2B gets in life. So we’ll just let her have her cheesy moment. So ends So-Shi. Though we’re not *quite* done with our escape from the factory yet.

Music: Wretched Weaponry (Quiet Instrumental)

Pascal silently drifts in on his butt jetpack back to 2B’s side. I guess he’d just been flying around up there the entirety of that battle. Kinda lost track of him in the fray. He has nothing to add about 2B’s victory in the fight. Pascal just wants to go home at this point.

So-Shi’s destruction has somehow lowered the bridge leading out of this level of the facility and onto an elevator finally heading to the top ground floor of the region. 9S has dropped out of communication at this point. If he managed to get captured or owned in space, he’s on his own this time.

This final elevator deposits us in some familiar ground. We’re back in the smelter pits we crossed multiple times in the variety of sidequests that required traversing the better part of the Abandoned Factory. Or at least the parts of the Abandoned Factory we had access to at the time. The area is significantly darker and creepy looking now. Partly due to the dead machine corpses strewn all over the area. Though they’re not all dead just yet.

For instance, as we head into a nearby shipping area we saw filled with idle machines on previous visits, it’s now full of machines gleefully stabbing their fellow machines repeatedly in the dark.

It feels good! It feels good! It feels sooo goooooood!
God God God God God God God God God...

We’ll uhh... just leave those boys to do their thing. We know this area. We’re just a few rooms from the exit. The last of the surviving zealots can be found in the smelter pits. They’re either passively worshiping nothing in particular or...

The only option left is to die...
I’m scared... I’m so scared...

Yes, let us die now!

And so they all leap to their deaths in the liquid steel. Well... at least they’re not trying to kill 2B and Pascal anymore. But, that’s not the last of ‘em.

The moment we’ve pined for is here! Let us all go together!
We will become gods and be freed from our torment!

And there goes another set of leapers jumping headlong into oblivion. How about one more set for the road, eh?

Farewell! Farewell!
We will become gods and be freed from our torment!
Bye-bye! Bye-bye!

Become as gods, you crazy kids you...

And thus ends our time with the machine lifeforms’ death cult. It’s a straight shot out with nothing but corpses from here to the exit.

Welp. We made it, Pascal. That was bonkers. But hey, it could have been way worse. At least there was no red-eyed jerks being possessed by extra-dimensional beings.

Music: ENDS

Meanwhile, hey remember Eve...? We kinda got sidetracked after we murdered his brother in that death match. He doesn’t seem particularly thrilled with our previous actions.

Eve slams the table, knocking over the candle stick.

Look, man. Your brother literally asked for that to happen. I’m sorry he was busy getting deep into blood sports instead of being there for you or teaching you about shirts. But the guy made his decision. Besides... Can’t you grow another brother out of one of your ribs? Does it work like that or was that only a one-time thing?

Eve slaps the candlestick off the table.

Hmm... I bet it was a one-time thing, huh? Bummer.

That is uhh... that’s an interesting tattoo spreading skin discoloration you’ve got going on there, Eve. I feel like I’ve seen that one somewhere before... Weird.

Tune in next time for the beginning of the final chapter of NieR: Automata’s first playthrough. I’m sure Eve will get over his foul mood in a couple days and that... interesting... skin condition spreading all over his body is nothing to worry about...

Video: Episode 59 Highlight Reel
(It’s a boss fight and the end of the chapter. You should watch this.)

Eve Official Art – He never did evolve the ability to use shirts. Tragic.