Part 39: UPDATE 34: Gateway to Another WorldOnly a few things to do today before I start the mission -- we are after all kind of pressed for time, having been overrun by a demon surprise attack!
Still time for Panic to get fancy, though. Osmonds-style.
And as a badass Earth-element sword-wielder I'd be doing Dio a disservice if I didn't immediately pass along this
Finally, it's getting to the point where I don't have as many spear-users as I have awesome spears, but since Mehuyael is still using a Volcaetus and is conveniently Air-element, he gets the Zephyros.
Now then, we've already liberated this area, but that was BEFORE the fell armies of the netherworld started pouring forth. That made no END of extra work for us. Let's get to it!
Update 34: Gateway to Another World
In the aftermath of the Great Demon Flood, Freddie had to move his headquarters from the Temple of Berthe to this dirty, disused attic. It's not the best digs he's ever had.
: "Ultimate power is the power of the netherworld? Why did Yumil..."
: "Hey, wait a second! Does this mean the Progenitor used the power of the netherworld to bring peace to this kingdom? The legend of the Ogre Battle... That was for reals, too!?"
NOTE: Yes, "for reals." Not "for real." Also Dio was being surprisingly insightful with that first sentence! (well, the first one after "wait a second".) Not so much the second one.
: "We can discuss this later. ...They were not merely summoned to this world. My belief is... that the Temple of Berthe is a chaos gate."
: "...Chaos gate!?"
: "Yes, chaos gate... An interdimensional portal connecting this world with another. Rumored to have been created by the gods in ancient times, its construction is far beyond our knowledge... The legend seems very believable..."
Sure it does. Look, we already knew it was a portal to the netherworld because freakin' demons were piling out of it like clowns from a Volkswagen, no need to keep telling us that.
: "That means this chaos gate opens to the netherworld..."
Hugo, I am seriously SO FED UP with you.
: "In any case, we cannot just leave it. According to the legend of the Ogre Battle, the denizens of the netherworld fought to make our world their own. This is not just a Palatinean matter anymore."
: "Yumil went to the netherworld? Why......"
I'm not sure whether it's surprising that the only insightful comments in this scene were made by Dio earlier and Freddie now despite the presence of two Old Wise People. If the portal opens to the Netherworld, that means that Yumil is presently quite literally in Hell. But at least the demons are probably being nice to him. He's important or something.
: "Get a hold of yourself!! We have no time for that!"
"stop worrying about your friend being literally in hell with demons, we have to say the same things we already knew over and over"
: "We must close the chaos gate. We must not let any more of them through. We don't know how to shut it, but we must stop it... even if we have to destroy the temple!"
Couldn't that last scene have taken place in this room instead of that attic? God knows we've got enough chairs.
: "This is not just your fight... or ours. Do you understand? Let's get started..."
: "Our goal is to take the temple, and deactivate the chaos gate."
Obviously, same map as before; our HQ is a lot closer now, though, making most of the map kind of redundant. Not that that'll stop me from conquering it.
: "The demons are appearing from the Temple of Berthe, but most of them have left the region."
Well at least he's gone from "we're all doomed" to "we shouldn't take this lightly," that's a step forward.
: "We must defeat them, and deactivate the chaos gate, by any means necessary."
: "Do not give up!!"
Pffft, like it'd really matter if they WERE immortal. Have you never played Oblivion, Hugo?
That full-sized Legion standing (for some reason) slightly off the path might command your immediate attention, but don't worry about it too much right yet; it's not moving. What IS moving is that Raven and that Dragon Master.
Oh, look. One of the demons is a Dragon Master named Ivory. She'll NEVER hear the end of that one. Anyway, of these first two attacking units, two different gimmick units are already required in response (well not so much "REQUIRED" in Bernarle's case as much as "a good idea" because he WILL find a way to fight you sideways or backwards if it'd get him a couple Petrifications).
Also, again, demons just seem to love undead. Good thing Europea's here!
I seriously did not mean to fight Bernarle with Sheen, but both my primary targets died pretty damn fast, so you will not find me complaining!
I have no idea why I didn't do this with Europea's unit in earlier playthroughs. She just shines in this niche.
The Composite Bow is good on attack power, but being non-elemental hurts it. YMMV.
At this point Evil Ivory succumbs to the hammers of Sheen's group. Without her Ahzi Dahaka it's just her and a couple goblins after all.
We're nearly through the first wave now, but we've got a couple more attackers coming from the north.
I'm not entirely sure what Faeries or Bahamuts are doing fighting on the demons' side. Jay is apparently VERY confused regarding what constitutes a beast in this game. I don't think he read the manual.
It's about time we got a new mace. Flashy weapons aren't as useful for Clerics, but this one will make whoever we give it to (probably Katreda) better at healing for some reason.
See, THIS is how you use a gimmick unit. Take notes.
Yeesh. Katreda just keeps getting dealt these crushing, CRUSHING defeats. It must be hell on her self-esteem. Good thing her daddy's around to support her!
Speaking of her daddy, here's what he's up to. Man, Magic Missile is still SO TERRIBLE.
I still can't get over Biske's hair. Whenever he runs forward to attack I keep seeing it in slow motion. On a beach.
The Freude Helm is one of the best helmets in the game defense-wise (not that that's saying much). It imparts a decent amount of Bane resistance. I'm too tired to make a Freud joke here.
Dude here got stuck guarding this completely irrelevant stronghold. Luckily for him I'm just OCD enough to head up there and try to take it.
Well, for a certain value of "luckily".
The Helm of Thunderclap is Air-element and slightly less protective than the Freude Helm, in addition to being VERY stylish.
While I'm wasting my time taking strongholds that gain me nothing, let's go and pay Samantha a visit down here in the southwest. I'm gonna blame her unfortunate formation on Demon bloodlust or something.
When one considers that these are actually towns with populations of 50-250 people, I guess it DOES make sense that I'd commit all this time to liberating them. I mean, these are humans being forced under the yoke of DEMONS.
Man, what does it say about your unit leader's social skills if you manage to Capture one of these towns?
Anyway I've futzed around on the western side of the map long enough, time to start thinking about taking down this Legion and getting back to that Chaos Gate. The legion core unit looks pretty much the only way it possibly could.
He is flanked on either side by these flying units. They cannot fly because they are in a Legion. Yeah, that totally makes sense.
Yeah, you know there's a problem with your unit when the only good thing about it is its Gremlins. One of them isn't even in the back row, and it's still more of a threat than Lloyd himself is.
This would be a decent unit if that dragon were anything other than a Flarebrass. I can't even bring myself to make a teen pregnancy joke here.
While I'm putting Freddie and Troi in position to take out that Legion from the flanks inward, Europea found a Naga Ring. It's an oddly Physically-oriented accessory; the best thing to put it on is probably an Enchanter.
Freddie can't get too close to the Legion before Bartith here starts getting protective. I wonder if exposing Freddie to that much melee power might be a bad idea?
Well, Bartith himself died before anyone on his side could take an action, but the downside of that is that one of Reynolds' heals got wasted (due to everyone in Freddie's unit having full HP).
Freddie being badass and guarding repeatedly does him a lot of favors, but he still gets out of that fight with less than one Ogre attack's worth of HP in him. Yeah I think I'll hold off on the legion attack from his flank for a second.
Troi has little trouble killing Juno even with his casters refusing to combo with each other just yet, but as soon as that battle's over, the whole legion decides it's time to get on the move and starts going through the complex parade-ground routines necessary to move itself toward the road.
This gives Troi the opportunity to ambush Winter from behind and kill the fuck out of him, but in the meantime those other three units are beelining straight for my wounded main character!
Luckily, Akbar went first and fighting a unit full of Soldiers gave Reynolds all the time she needed to heal Freddie right up. Lloyd followed shortly.
Meanwhile Nicholson ended up attacking Troi for some reason. Here's an awkwardly-timed screenshot of the last second of life anyone in his unit has.
With that Legion out of the way, Cucka steps in to liberate the Chaotic-leaning stronghold of So Kol, and receives something of a surprise immediately afterward...
: "...The Caliginous Order!?"
Odd that these guys would leave Pruflas, the mulleted idiot, in charge when there was an Ultimate Power to be gained, but would rush to scope out the situation in person as soon as demons started conga-lining out of the temple. But I'm sure they've got their reasons. Wheels within wheels and whatnot.
: "......Revolutionary Army...? I can't believe you're still alive."
Dude, have we MET?
: "What are you planning to do with the chaos gate? Lodis wants the power of the netherworld? Do you believe that you can control such power!?"
: "Do not dare confuse us with those who are weak of will and succumb to the Infernal Aura. Under the divine protection of Filarhh, all beings fall to their knees before us. Netherworlders are no exception... Our strength is greater than evil's. What we want is beyond that... The ultimate power!!"
Dude if you had the SLIGHTEST idea what's been going on here since your boy Pruflas bit it you'd sound a lot less stupid right now.
: "We will descend to the netherworld, and claim it!"
...rather than a lot MORE stupid. Which is how you actually sound.
: "Power beyond evil's...? Why do you need that much power!? Are you going to conquer the world?"
: "...The weak are plentiful. We offer our strength to lead them, that's all. That is their only use to us. You are unworthy of our leadership. Dying is your only useful act."
He draws his sword. I'm pretty sure he's not this area's boss, though, so I'm not worried.
Also I'd be able to take Richard a lot more seriously if his hair didn't... wing out like that. He looks like he ended up in the middle ages after getting lost on the way to a lax game.
A Voice: "...That's what Lodis is after?"
: "What? ...Who's there!?"
A Voice: "Even the happiness that they clutch desperately to? ...Knights of Lodis! For Zenobia, for Palatinus... I will not allow that to happen!"
WHO ARE THOSE MYSTERIOUS FIGURES? I am held in utter suspense!!!
Yeah of course it's gonna be Destin. So many plot characters. I'm beginning to wish I hadn't sent in a generic to take So Kol, but it was the only way I could liberate it.
: "Leave them to us! Go, and destroy the chaos gate... Stop them!"
: "Don't be swayed by your emotions! What is it that you must do right now? What is it that only you can do!?"
: "Go! You must hurry!"
: "You are Destin... the one who defeated the Zeteginian Empire?"
At this point our mission continues much as it had before, despite the fact that So Kol is currently hosting the BATTLE OF THE CENTURY.
Let's see what happens if we try to go back in! I mean, we can spare thirty seconds to help them win that battle, right?
Oh never mind I guess we can't do that and have to talk to this nun instead
Guess Destin's on his own!
Meanwhile in the south my agenda of taking every Stronghold even if I gain nothing from it brings Asnabel against Cain the Ninja.
It takes like four or five battles for him to make any serious headway against that Undead-filled unit for some reason, but he's eventually able to take the stronghold and then wipe them all out.
Spoils! Europea has been on assignment in the north chasing down Undead for me this whole time. She won a Rare Candy. Guy found a ground item I missed last time -- the Fire-element medium armor.
The Snow Orb is an INT-boosting accessory, but it's nowhere near as good as Rings of Eloquence or Feathers of Archangel. I think I can still find someone to give it to, though.
Finally, neither of these strongholds had anyone around to guard them for miles. One of them is my former HQ, even.
At this point we can start to think about wrapping up. Our boss, guarding the Chaos Gate, is a demon named Dekarabia. He's... apparently the first Saturos we've seen this whole time? Okay, sure!
Kind of subpar stat growth, but these are the characters that allow Demons to lead their own units for once. Think of them as kind of like berserkers but furrier.
The ambiance of the Temple of Berthe has changed somewhat...
: "Keep the power contained within the gate!! Bring forth as many of our comrades as we can!"
Yeah, the humans in OB64 might not talk in Ye Olde Medieval Speeche, but the demons are sort of approximating it.
: "This time... We will claim this world as our own!"
And with no further ado it's time for battle. This probably won't go very far since Ankiseth managed to catch this guy facing sideways somehow, giving him meatshields both front and back.
Still did pretty well for himself though. I'll definitely take that 10 times out of 10.
Freddie gets no cutscene for attacking second. This demon doesn't really have that much to talk about.
As you might expect, he's a decently big hitter with that freaky-looking axe of his, but he chose to build his unit out of 4 Goblins, arranged symmetrically with no meatshields. He poses basically no threat.
: ...is to fill the land with evil... This world will be... as... ...the... netherworld......"
Cultural imperialism?!? The FIENDS!
Just watch, by this time next year all the local Palatinean-food restaurants will be out of business and there'll be a McDemon's and a Hellbucks on every block.
Our reward for saving the world or whatever shit is the Axe of Wyrm, Dekarabia's weird-looking two-headed jobbie and our new best one-handed axe.
As you may be able to guess, this marks the end of a chapter. NEXT TIME ON OGRE BATTLE: Your chapter break, and all the you've come to expect from it!