Part 1: Episode 1: FBI Special Agent Aya York Brea
We are welcomed back to the world of Survival Horror by a date and location typed across out screen all X-Files style
Cutscene Time, kids!
By the way, it's September. Just in case you didn't catch that the first time they told us. 4 seconds ago.
Oh hey, it's our old pal!
Remember that time a crazy opera lady turned into a giant monster, burned half the city alive, unleashed a hoard of twisted monstrosities, then gave birth to a hellish death baby? Yeah, that was one nutty weekend.
This is a shooting range we're seeing, by the way.
And the targets are being shot. It's admittedly less cool in stills, I suppose.
Aya quit her job to become a professional monster hunter, which is easily one of the coolest jobs you could ever get.
"Fuck bees." ~ Aya Brea
Oh, by the way, Daniel Dollis is not in this game. Just wanna get that outta the way up front. No one gets punched the fuck out, and I apologize in advance.
This guy tries to strafe across the range, but it doesn't work out for him. Dinosaurs just never have any luck.
Ahaha, that is the worst shot to use for poor Eve. It's really hard to look dignified while melting.
Remember all these guys?! Sure, the monkeys were kinda cool, but the blobs? Who gives a shit about those dumb blobs.
Oh, right, the Statue of Liberty kinda...fell over at the end of the last game. That musta been expensive.
I do have to wonder if Aya was just driving across country, stopping at various land marks and massive balls of twine, and just occasionally blasting the errant Giant Enemy Crab with her Shotgrenadegun.
"Oh, ya don't like the scorpion? Well, how about..."
Okay, that might look bad, but there's a fairly good chance that she was actually a rat monster in a VERY godd disguise.
Aya lowers her gun as the alarms blare for another few seconds.
Pierce here will be filling in for Maeda in the "awkward, doofy, sidekick" department.
: 8-year-old white girl, middle of the ghetto, buncha monster, this time of night, with quantum physics books? She about to start some shit, Pierce.
Look at that console! Is Aya in a shooting range or a recording booth?
There's actually a little mini-game you can play here in the shooting range, with several different levels and rewards. It's tedious as hell, though, and the first few levels are largely just a tutorial, so I'll be skipping it for now. Don't worry, we'll come back and shoot some cardboard later.
HQ Theme ~ Sounds familiar, doesn't it?
All of a sudden, we have control! Aya, like much of the game, has taken to working in a more Resident Evil-like fashion, so we're back to good old tank controls. Let's check out our menu.
Well, that's a whole bunch of zeroes. Aya's looking decidedly more...Japanese, too. Eh, maybe it's just the haircut. So let's explain some stuff. Our main menu here displays our basic stats, like HP and MP, as well as the weapon and armor we currently have equipped. EXP and BP are back, too, but they work a little differently this time around. We'll discuss that later. Under P.Energy, we see our various spell levels. Magic has gotten a huge overhaul from the first game, and I'll explain it more later. For now, let's see what we got.
One massive improvement is that Key Items are now a completely separate thing from our inventory. Our Inventory is limited to a hard 20 items, but we can carry an infinite number of Key Items. No more shitty ass lucky charms taking up precious inventory space! Yay!
Our MIST badge is all we have on us at the moment. Every item in our inventory, Key or otherwise, can be examined by pressing the Triangle button. This is very handy, because this game is fucking loaded with flavor text.
Here's our starting weapon, the M93R. You'll notice that it has two firing modes, a burst shot and a single shot. Certain guns in this game have alt-fire modes, and some are more useful than others. Unfortunately, a single shot from the pistol does about as much damage as sneezing on the enemy, so there's not much reason to use it over the burst.
Here's Aya's current armor that we won't be hanging on to. You'll notice that Armor modifies our HP and MP. Experience doesn't level either of these anymore (by itself), so good armor is really the primary way of boosting your HP. The Quick Fire ability means that Aya readies and fires her weapons faster than normally, which is great for slower weapons like shotguns and rifles, but almost unnoticeable on our pistol. The Attachments indicate the number of items we can attach to our armor. Apparently, our inventory exist in a hellish dimension of wind and spirits, so we can't access it in combat. You can only access items you have attached to your armor, presumable with velcro, in combat. So, if you need to heal, but you forgot to attach any Medicines to your armor, you're shit outta luck. Ammo is largely unaffected by this, since Aya will automatically reload when a clip runs dry. Forgetting to attach your ammo only prevents you from reloading manually.
We also have a map, which is nice. By the way, see that little "Help" button icon?
Pressing it gets you a little comment from Aya that (usually) points you in the direction of your current goal. This little feature is HUGELY helpful if you get busy for a while, then come back to the game weeks later and have totally forgotten what the hell you were doing.
But, that's enough menu shenanigans, let's poke around this joint!
Oh, hey, remember that thing I said about flavor text? This game fucking loves flavor text. Aya has something to say about almost every weird little background item you'll see. A lot of things to say. I, personally, adore flavor text so I enjoy all these little worthless comments even when they say basically nothing. These little spiels also do a fairly good job at developing Aya's character, so I'll be including them. All of them.
: We're just not allowed to take any outside the practice range.
: These rounds fit in my favorite M93R handgun. Never leave home without them. A lot of them. You can use these all-purpose rounds in submachine guns, too.
: Shotgun shells. Each round sprays 9 lead shots. Pretty easy to see and pretty powerful. You can get into a lot of close combat situations in my job. Shells like these, with good stopping power and coverage, are key.
: MIST often works with the military, so we use compatible ammo. More powerful than pistol rounds, with better range.
Aya also comments on the air conditioning. I do not have air conditioning, so I am quite jealous.
: Actually, it's set a little on the cold side.
Yeah, yeah, rub it in, Aya. Fucking July and its bullshit.
: Of course, I still sweat like I'm in a sauna.
There are several objects in the game that Aya just plain complains about you examining too many times.
Let's blow this joint, and check out the rest of the MIST FBI HQ, ASAP.
More stuff to examine, more text for me to transcribe!
: Long range, serious power. But they draw too much attention, so I only use them sparingly.
This is a blatant lie, and we will be using a rifle almost exclusively once we get one.
: A.k.a. the "street sweeper." Most kinds of buckshot spread lead shot over a limited radius with an excellent hit ratio. You can take down a bunch of small targets in one shot. Other kinds of shells are good in different situations.
There's also this handy brochure on the top secret monsters that the government has spent millions of dollars covering up.
: NMC is the abbreviation for "Neo-Mitochondrion Creature." NMCs are organisms with modified mitochondria. Mitochondria are the cellular organs responsible for creating energy. They're in practically every living thing -- humans included. In the distant past, they existed as independent organisms.
Hence, the title of the game. By the way, for anyone who hasn't read the PE1 LP, these games don't know how the fuck mitochondria work, so lots of this is nonsense. Long story short: Mitochondria = Magic.
: They live inside the cell nucleus in symbiosis with the cell. Of course, their chromosomes are different than those of the host. Most mitochondria are harmless. The problem in when they evolve consciousness-- those are the neo mitochondria. When they get inside an organism, the host transforms into a large, violent, carnivorous creature known as an NMC. Then, there's no turning back. That's where we hunters come in.
Yay, more text!
Tabloids are probably a secret government monster hunter's best friend.
: People don't know that NMC's really exist. It's tough keeping it all inside, but MIST is MIST...and rules are rules.
Jeeze, there's a lot of this stuff. Let's just move on. I'll cover the rest of the stuff here at HQ later.
Okay, one more. It's kinda important that we know what MIST is, after all.
: "Mitochondrion Investigation and Suppression Team" usually abbreviated as "MIST". This is the department where I've been assigned. MIST began as a team of agents gathered from within the FBI. Thier mission: to exterminate NMCs and keep them from multiplying. When some NMCs escaped from Manhattan and began to spread, organizations sprang up everywhere. Eventually, they were unified as a formal division of the FBI. The government has yet to publicly announce the existence of NMCs. So MIST Hunters are officially just FBI agents.
Yes, yes it is.
: L.A. MIST was founded last August. Total employees: 12. Out supervisor, Agent Baldwin, has all the personality of a computer. So we call him "Hal". 7 Hunters work under him, myself included. 2 scientific analysis personnel, one info-management specialist, and 1 firearms expert work with us. Our jurisdiction is L.A. When creatures are sighted, it's our job to go get 'em. It's like exterminating termites with a higher exterminator death rate.
After transcribing all that text, a cutscene of Shaggy talking on the phone is a welcome relief.
: That was Hal, I presume?
: Ugh, you're the worst.
I know the name of the tower is not even remotely close to "Nakatomi", but that will not stop me from making Die Hard jokes.
: I went to a clearance sale there last week.
: Not on the roof, I bet.
Pierce shrugs, because he is oh, so useful.
: Last time I checked out a "creature" sighting, it was just a salesman in a fluffy chicken suit.
: No such luck this time. They've already called in SWAT.
Aya hasn't lost her sarcasm chops, I see.
: Pierce, I single-handedly killed a fire-breathing Tyrannosaurus by punching explosions at it. I think I can afford a little confidence.
Perfect! Next time, we'll rush to...further explore the MIST HQ. I promise stuff starts blowing up soon, honest.