Part 17: UPDATE 12: ComplicationsWas planning on posting this tomorrow, but it's all done now so I guess I might as well just go ahead and post it just in case anyone thought I had anything better to do on a Saturday night. Enjoy!
Update 12: Complications
In which I begin by making a troubling number of subtle musical theater references but quickly tire of it
In the aftermath of the Alba campaign, the sound of a roaring, ecstatic crowd can be heard over triumphant music as we find Freddie standing alone in Akka Castle gazing in the direction of the throne.
This symbolizes about all the same stuff it did when we saw Godeslas doing it.
: "Frederick... Did we do the right thing? Many were hurt. The entire kingdom and the Lodis Empire are against us. Battles will intensify, and so will the number of casualties. ...And that's not all. We haven't got the slightest clue as to what those mosnters are. ...All is shrouded in mystery. Can we... Can the Revolutionary Army overcome these obstacles?"
It's true that the apparent beginning of Armageddon is perhaps not the best time to have a civil war, no matter how much of an asshole Rhade is -- themes like these are also explored in Stephen King's Dark Tower series and (of course) Dragon Age: Origins -- but then we didn't even start seeing demons until we just about had the Southern Region wrapped up and we can't really go backsies on it now. Shit happens, I guess. Blame Baldwin.
: "...Honestly, we are in a very difficult situation. But Freddie, don't you think that the important thing now is to do our best? You refuse to respond when faced with a difficult problem? You only act when a solution is obvious? The future... our future is yet to be told."
Fred Raskin layin' on the tough love.
...man, I REALLY wish Frederick's name had come to mind when we were naming Freddie. That might get confusing.
: "Listen, Freddie, to the people's cheers. What we do know is that the cheers that you hear... the rejoicing... is the result of what we've done."
Right on cue, we once more hear the people singing the song of angry men and we fade out to our new between-chapters montage.
A few days after the liberation of the Southern Region...
The Triumvirate of the Holy Lodis Empire ordered the king of Palatinus to eliminate the Revolutionary Army. The king sent orders to both the Eastern and the Western Divisions.
Neither of those have come into play yet -- we've only seen the South and Central Divisions -- but they're pretty much all we're going to be fighting for quite a while. Well, mostly. Worth noting is that there is no Northern Division.
oh hey yumil
Immediately after the appointment of the new general, the Western Division advanced on Alba. After a number of skirmishes, the full-scale battle between the Western Division and the Revolutionary Army is thought to take place in the near future.
Hm. Yumil seems to be involved with the Western Division, and that guy I'm assuming is the new general also looks a bit... familiar. Troubling.
Although the Eastern Orthodox Church received the same instructions, it chose to remain silent in the matter...
The implication here is that the Eastern Region (and by extension the Eastern Division) is run by its own particular offshoot of... whatever the national religion actually is. Probably not Lodisism. At any rate they could crush us right now with a two-front war, but for their own reasons they're not getting involved and we can devote this entire chapter to a West Side Story.
wow that line sounds straight out of a trailer for a bad movie
JASON STATHAM IS
Cut to Yumil and that guy from earlier standing around what appears to be some kind of jungle ruins or something.
Hey, that's... and that means the new general of the Western Division is... oh my.
: "Ankiseth... What is my father's intention? What am I to do in Wentinus...? He wants me to fight Lodis? ...What should I do? How can I gain his approval...?"
For reference, Wentinus is the proper name of the Western Region, like Alba is the proper name for the South. Yumil has apparently taken the path favored by many younger sons of the nobility or "fuck everything and join the army I guess." If there were a third brother he'd probably be in the clergy.
Not that Yumil really knows anything about war--his experience so far can be summed up as getting kidnapped and breaking ranks like a madman to charge a castle by himself. And now he's apparently some kind of major general. In short, when he has a modicum of elemental strategy this appointment will make some degree of sense, but for now we can only assume Ankiseth will be doing the bulk of the work.
Oh, it's... Baldwin. Fancy meeting him here. And he brought some girl. I guess he can't be expected to lug around that sword himself. It looks heavy.
: "I beg your pardon for being late. This is to commemorate your appointment as general... Please accept this holy sword of the royal family."
Not entirely sure what Baldwin's doing with a sword of the Palatinean royal family, or what he's doing giving it BACK, but sure, why not.
: "I brought this maiden to take care of your personal needs. Though she is of humble origins, I believe she is suitable to serve you, in both age and features."
I didn't get a screenshot of it, but at this point Baldwin proceeded to waggle his eyebrows and nudge Yumil with his elbow for approximately 45 seconds.
(For reference, by the way, according to the People screen Baldwin is 39 years old. This girl whom he finds suitable "in both age and features" is 17. Yeah, draw your own conclusions.)
: "...What... ......What is your name...?"
: "Mari Callan at your service, my lord."
: "...Why? I know you. Who are... you......?"
NICE PICKUP LINE, YUMIL.
Oh, THAT's where the awkward cringe-worthy JRPG romance subplot went. It only makes sense; Freddie isn't NEARLY effeminate enough to fill a role in it. Well, as long as it stays the hell away from my party I'm fine with it.
At this point there is some kind of one-second-long earthquake and Mari almost falls down, but Yumil catches her. It'd all be very romantic if he wasn't still holding a holy sword of the royal family.
: "...An earthquake?"
: "Oh, it seems the gods have taken a liking of our new general as well."
yeah they always send natural disasters when they're happy, it's like simcity
since this is a nintendo console game, the way you can tell theyre REALLY happy is when your entire city gets crushed by a giant bowser
Let's see what Freddie's up to now.
It would seem that Godeslas's old office has been converted into some kind of conference room. Present are Frederick, Freddie, Hugo, Destin, Saradin, some random Valkyrie, and some guy who looks a whole lot like Rhade.
: "...Still no activity at the Eastern Orthodox Church..."
: "The Central Division is keeping a close watch over the area, presumably to prevent us from making contact with them. The Eastern Region, led by the Eastern Orthodox Church, has opposed the Central Region in the past. It can't be helped. They seem to have no intention of following the Central Region, but it's hard to say if they'll be on our side, or... against us."
dude they're part of the government we are bringing down, no need to be all dramatic about it
Okay, so the Central Region is Ontario and the Eastern Region is Quebec. Noted.
: "...I see. What is the status of the Western Division?"
: "Since the appointment of Prince Yumil as commander of the Western Division, the troops have advanced to the border five times. This is the largest force we have yet encountered... They will most likely start advancing toward us in the next few days."
Thanks for the report, nameless generic!
: "The Western Division bares its fangs at last... There's no way we can avoid this battle."
At this point our Rhade lookalike speaks.
: "Like in the Southern Region, there is an area in the Western Region in which people are enslaved. Why don't we liberate them and join forces?"
: "Are you talking about the mining facility in Audvera Heights...? most of them are Bolmaukans... The Holy Lodis Empire will surely respond in kind."
hoooooooo boy, this part
Okay I'll just go ahead and say this part here: Black people in OB64 are, at this point, slaves. They used to run the kingdom of Nirdam (but are called Bolmaukans for some reason); it got conquered by Lodis; now they're slaves. No one on the Internet seems to be paying this little tidbit any attention at present (the first Google result for '"ogre battle 64" racism' is about Donkey Kong for some reason), but this does seem just a TINY bit objectionable to me. Of course, the slaves in the Southern Region, which this gentleman has just namedropped, appeared to be predominantly white, but I still would like to know whose idea it was to make the only black population in the entire game into slaves.
Thankfully -- I'll just go ahead and spoil this here too so I can sleep at night -- I will eventually be able to resolve this issue with some good old-fashioned emancipation. While a game featuring black people being slaves until some white people happen along to rescue them is STILL pretty racist, it's not nearly as racist as a game featuring black people being slaves and some white people happening along to NOT rescue them.
Anyway now that I've utterly failed to dance delicately around that issue I think there was some kind of war council going on.
: "Nice and convenient for us, isn't it? Let them handle the Western Division and Lodis. A little give-and-take."
This guy's name is Xevec. He is blond. He is an asshole. But he's OUR asshole. Here he is suggesting that we rescue the slaves and immediately draft them into an army in exchange for their freedom. Yeah I don't think he really got into the Revolution for the idealism part. My theory is that he was in the army and just really hated his boss.
: "Xevec!! How can you say that!? Are you suggesting that we use the Bolmaukans? I thought our goal was to abolish the class system and declare independence from the Holy Lodis Empire. If that's true, then the Bolmaukans should be our allies, not a tool to serve our purpose..."
Xevec gets so het up over this that he stands up and waves his arm dismissively at us!!! ACTION
: "You've got no right to talk shit to me! My only concern is achieving our goal... winning this war. We set the Bolmaukans free, and they help us in return. ...Is that wrong? We don't use them; we fight together with them!! It's all for victory!"
Then he awkwardly sits back down and scoots his chair back under the table while everyone stares.
: "It's important to win battles, but that is not our goal. Winning battles allows us to quickly achieve our goals, but the only thing we'd gain would be short-lived peace!"
If I may attempt to parse this poor translation: Adopting non-egalitarian tactics where expedient might help to win the war a little faster, but going a little too far off-message would cause us to lose track of our goals and eventually we'd just be a new empire not really distinguishable from the old one. Basically it's a Napoleon thing.
: "Then tell me what the hell I'm supposed to do!! We can't contact the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Western Division is only a few days away, the Central Division is fast on our heels... and to top it all off, there's Lodis!"
you forgot the DEMONS
: "Talking about ideals doesn't improve our situation! Or what, are you gonna kill us all!?"
that's pretty much my reaction too
: "We're gonna fight them anyway. Pushing them back to the Western Region isn't enough! We should advance into their territory! We free the Bolmaukans while we're at it, and prepare for Lodis' attack. And it's all for the sake of revolution!! ...You have a problem with this, Frederick?"
: "Freddie, head west to stop the advancement of the Western Division. And I want others on standby. I will contact each of you later about the plan."
Sending us to deal with this and not Xevec is perhaps the most diplomatic way Frederick could have dealt with this. Not quite as optimal as, say, kicking Xevec out and not letting him come to any more council meetings, but it'll do.
They're not quite done yet, though.
: "Do you still have something to say to me...?"
: "Frederick... You're our leader. You understand, right? My job is to slay our foes. ...What's your job? Is it to pursue ideals, or to live in reality? Make up your mind, will ya?"
: "You'll understand eventually, the reality of it all... The reality that we have to face..."
Considering Frederick is supposed to be a charismatic figure that spawned an entire revolution I kind of wish he'd hold his own a little better in policy arguments.
At this point we find ourselves back on the world map, with access to Alba once again. Our destination appears to be Mylesia, thankfully NOT as an escort mission this time. Before we even attempt to go all that way, though, we've got some other issues to take care of.
For one thing, while I was getting so caught up with liberating the Southern Region I apparently forgot Freddie's birthday. Luckily we've got the Hugo report to reminisce about it. Let's check out this event.
At your birthday celebration, Hugo and whichever unique characters the game decides are currently the five most important honor you with a big dinner and a present. If your birthday happens before you have any unique characters, the guest list will consist of Hugo, Dio, and the four generics in Freddie's unit.
: "Happy Birthday!!"
: "We'll be counting on you, Freddie."
: "May your future be blessed by the gods..."
: "I've never seen such a great party!!"
I'm... honestly not sure whether that's adorable or depressing.
: "You've grown quite a bit, Freddie."
: "Uh... Thank you."
"is he calling me fat"
: "We prepared this celebration just for you. You should thank your friends. We have a gift for you."
Awww, the Messenger guy can't even see over the present!
Every time Freddie has a birthday, he gets a special item. Every ten years (his 20th, his 30th, etc) the present is something really good which you cannot get any other way. The rest of the time it's something rare which may or may not be of any particular use. This year we got a Goblet of Destiny, which has a chance to raise a character's Luck. It could also lower it (which is why you wanna savescum when using these things). This is not particularly useful unless you're doing something special which I'll get into after this chapter is over.
From here I'll just take a moment to switch some better weapons onto my soldiers...
Dammit Dio is leaning Lawful now. This game.
One more errand here: I'm gonna send Freddie into Alba real quick.
He gets a nice little scene in Edepar which I might as well show off now rather than in an update with, y'know, any actual gameplay in it.
: "You're our hope... Or rather, the hope for all the people of the Southern Region. You're a miracle... A miracle brought to save the world from chaos."
It's obvious what this guy is talking about here: Freddie has accomplished the great American dream by killing his boss with a sword and getting away with it. The mayor of Edepar is so inspired by this triumph of the working man that he's got a prezzie for us.
: "The people of Edepar would like to support and congratulate your effort. We would like to make Sir Gallant an honorary citizen of Edepar. Please accept this medal as a token of our appreciation."
The Medal of Vigor is a special item that will double the Soldier Exp gained by any unit carrying it. I almost definitely won't be raising any more soldiers, but this was a nice little scene anyway. I always appreciate being able to hear people tell me how great I am.
NEXT TIME ON OGRE BATTLE: I guess we're going back to Mylesia, right? Join me next time as we definitely make it all the way over there!