Part 37: I Hate Your Minigames, Flare!I Hate Your Minigames, Flare!
"Of course it wasn't, the place was shifted by you during the war."
"Haven't you noticed yet!? That ice wall is not natural at all! It's artificial!"
"Is that possible?"
Why would it not be? You live in a magical fantasy world!
"But even my fire spells had no effect at all!"
"Because Caris' flame came from magic and what if the ice has magic resistance spell on it?"
"That means we can't even cleave it with wind spells, nor move it and crush it with earth magic!"
"Then we might be able to break through the wall if we use natural fire or other non-magicals?"
"I'm not 100% sure about that. My theory is only based on the assumption that it's magical."
"But even with the best anti-heat coating or the Field Shell, some heat will eventually get transferred."
"But there's another way!"
Uhm..what? Seriously, what point in the previous sentence prompted her to come up with the next macguffin?
"Yes, what if the wall itself is actually a monster in disguise?"
"What is that "Magnetic" thing?"
"Did you know that all living things carry tiny amount of electricity inside the body? And we can amplify the magnitude of the electricity by magic or some other means. And the resulting magnetic field can prevent the heat transfer up to 100%!"
"Then can't we just use the spells which are not fire attribute?"
"No use. The spell creating the field is the anti-magic barrier in itself."
"That's a perfect defense wall!"
"I know, so only physical attacks are useful but the wall can freeze the weapons as well."
Yeah, okay! I'm not sure if you have noticed by now, but the game has a habit of making it extra clear that your current obstacle is super hard to overcome. It's very subtle and that's why I'm pointhaha, just kidding. I'm cutting a few lines here, because it's just inane banter about if the wall is a disguised monster or magical Anime bullshit. The game honestly spends way too much lines on hyping up your current obstacle, only to have it all get wiped away when somebody has the one good idea. Let's skip to that good idea.
"North from Sea Mar Port, is a place called Sateria Temple; where the fortunetellers live..."
"Wow! That sounds interesting!"
"Very powerful fortunetellers have been living in that place for generations. I heard they can really see through the future. But Mimi once warned me about these fortunetellers, that they are very eccentric and hard to deal with..."
"What! Aunt Mimi said that!? That means we're in trouble!"
Jfyi, Mimi is the mother of Romelia, and thenightsshadow educated us about her a short while ago. I don't think Flare and her are actually related by blood though, so "aunt" is probably just a term of endearment.
"Aunt Mimi is famous for her very optimistic personality and also for her openness towards everybody...So when she says someone is bad or difficult to deal with, then the person really IS! Or even worse!!"
"So talking to that fortuneteller isn't any easier than breaking through the ice wall~"
Latyss will forever be my mouthpiece
"A-Anyway, we might get some useful information over there. Let's try it!"
"Yeah, let's go! Let's see what am I gonna ask~ Mm..."
"Orubia...She surely looks happy~"
"How about finding out everyone's futures? It would be so fun!"
"Like I said before, we are NOT going there for fun~"
Yes, indeed. Because now, my dear readers, comes that one part that I hate
Yes, the fortuneteller is wearing an astronaut suit. Seriously. No, don't ask why. Please don't.
"I'm Ryle Laster. I came here to..."
"Ah, you don't have to tell me. You were having trouble getting through the ice wall near the Abyss, right?"
I couldn't find an astronaut face, so deal with it
"Have you forgotten already? I'm a master fortuneteller, and even a beginner can do that..."
"Blue-haired Paladin over there! Yes you! Watch your mouth young lady! You just thought, "Now that's the worst dresser EVER~"..."
"(So he can read a person's mind too...I better watch out.)"
"Like the reputation, you ARE the best fortuneteller around but please stop peeping into our minds."
"So Hayami, when you gonna stop pretending to be a ninja?"
to the max!
"Sessha never did!! Now sessha am with Ryle Dono by the direct order from Lord Zestrum!"
"(Do they know each other?)"
"We're kind of in a hurry. Could you stop rambling around and get to business?"
"And you are Fina Delstar....Still sea-sicking and afraid of ghosts? Poor girl....your breasts just won't grow bigger."
"It's NONE of your business!!"
"(Now I can see WHY Lady Flare warned us about this guy~)"
"But, please tell us what you see. It's very important."
"You mean the future relationship with this boy here?"
"A-A-A-Ah NO! That's not what I meant!"
"We can't waste our time here. Please stop playing around."
"How much do you charge for each service?"
"I decide the price after the work is done, in some cases it'll drain more power and thus cost more. So it depends."
"Then how do we know you didn't rip us off?"
"Actually that's the most fair way to price for the service."
"Rollslay uses a technique called "Time Dive" to look into the future, and it often risks his life."
"My mind leaves the body, in order to travel ahead of time and virtually experience the future events. But even a tiny disturbance will disconnect the link to my body, and I can't go back in the end."
"I see...in the worst case, you'll lose your life for sure."
"Also you must be determined to face the outcomes which I'm about to show you. Are you ready for that?"
"Face the outcomes?"
"Like I said before, I risk my life every time the service is performed, and it's not a regular fortunetelling you'd expect in other places. So I won't do it unless you show me that you're serious about it."
"...Ok. How do you want us to prove it?"
And so it begins...
"Correct. You are at Sateria Temple, where the vision of the future is rewarded only to those who pass the trials!"
"Then tell us the rules."
"See the 2 magic circles right next to me? Enter both of them, and bring me the proof. I'll explain to you after entering the circle."
"Alright, let's decide who'll be in the party."
"It's already been set."
"Orubia! Latyss! Hayami! Mariel!"
"What's the big idea!?"
"You've been fighting together so far. But some day, you'll get separated by force, what will you do then?"
"Find the others and help them out of course!"
"You trying to test us?"
"Correct. Caris, you first!"
"...Alright. I'll show you!!"
"Don't worry! I'll see you guys later."
Caris takes the left teleporter...
...and ends up here.
"This is trial room 1. You're gonna find 2 of your friends here. Use the direction keys to move and press the Action Key repeatedly to break the jail doors, in order to rescue your friends. Come back to here after you are done. And watch out for the ferocious tigers. Once you're caught, you have to go back and rescue your friends again!"
"How could he do this to me~ A delicate lady!"
Judging by that description, you may think that this isn't going to be too bad, and that I'm a big baby. Hoho, how little you know!
As Rollslay(what a dumb name) said, we need to evade the tiger and smash down the doors to the cells that hold our friends. That is easier said than done, because the tiger is a fucking homing missile on steroids! He moves really fast, and will relentlessly hunt you down once he sees you. Smashing down the doors takes some time, like at least 20 mashes of the action key, so you can't win if you can't shake him.
The only way to do that, is to get him into a position from where you can exploit the limits of the RPGmaker AI. Like, you have to be above a wall, but close enough so that the tiger doesn't try to move left or right, because his AI is telling him that you're really close and that he should just walk upwards into the wall. If you can manage that, then you can walk upwards to the cells, and pray that the tiger won't figure out how to follow you. The switches on the wall alternately drop and raise the gates on each section, which is not very useful because you really would want to raise the gates behind you to block the tiger from following you. But you can't because the switches for the gates are below them. So you can really only block your own progress, or stop the tiger if he's coming from above. I hope this makes some sense to you, because it's awful to play and I can't explain it better!
Also, the steroid tiger isn't the only problem here.
Jep, there are several invisible triggers around that will spawn a second tiger
He's much slower, and there can't be more than two tigers on the map, but dodging both of them is very frustrating!
I failed this minigame like five or six times, before I managed to get the steroid tiger stuck on a wall without triggering his buddy.
I mashed my keyboard like mad, so I really can't tell you how many whacks each door takes. But it's entirely too long, that's for sure!
And guess what?
You can still fail this whole thing if the tiger catches you on the way back out
So after a few more tries, I finally manage it and Caris can leave with the first proof.
This was already awful to play, but the next one gets even worse!
"We are fine. But Sis Caris had to fight with big tigers to save us!"
"And it was so scary~"
"Then Fina, it's your turn."
"So now I must bring Latyss and Hayami back here!"
"Then let's start this, shall we?"
"You need to save your 2 friends in trial 2, and come back here. It's pretty much the same as trial 1. This time when the balloon at the right side of the room is touched by the penguin, you have to start all over again, so watch out! If you want to keep the balloon away from the penguin, you can use the Action Key to carry it and drop it again. Also while carrying the balloon, the wolves won't attack you. So remember that!"
"I must keep my eyes on both penguin and the wolves."
By its description, this trial doesn't sound too different, right? Well, just wait a moment, then you'll understand how utterly fucked that thing with the penguin is!
Okay, first the good news. This wolf is not as fast or as relentless as steroid tiger was, and it also seems to have a smaller detection radius.
However, there are still invisible buttons that will make a second wolf spawn. And can you spot what is real shitty here?
The bridges that lead to the cells are only one tile wide. So if a wolf spots you on the bridge, you can't evade him and will lose!
But that's not enough, because now I have to explain this god damn bullshit penguin.
See that cute little guy? He is the fucking devil! He'll slowly walk towards the balloon, and you lose when he touches it. So you have to get back to him in time, pick up the balloon, and wait until he turns around again before dropping it. Then you can get back to trying to evade the wolves, and contemplating suicide because this wretched minigame is slowly eating your soul. Oh, what's that? You were so focused on evading wolves and bashing on doors that you forgot to check up on the penguin again? And you already had saved both girls and were only two tiles away from the exit? Sucks to be you! Try again! This is fun for everyone!
Ugh, I'm really trying to hold back the bile that's in me right now, because I'm writing this update only a couple hours after dealing with this. I said it before, but I stopped playing the game for a while when I encountered this shit for my very first time. Because, if you thought that Flare couldn't possibly have made this worse after coming up with the penguin, then you're wrong!
There are invisible triggers that will make the penguin go much faster! Yeah
It's kinda cute that he gets a crown+cape when he's in fast mode, but you have basically lost when this happens. You may as well run into a wolf and try again to save you some time. To be fair, there are also invisible triggers that make him go slower, and hitting one while he's fast resets him to normal, but you first have to figure out where they are.
So yeah, there you have it. The most bullshit annoying minigame that I have ever played. Seriously. I managed to beat this in one sitting, but really can't tell you how many times I failed. It's pretty much a blur after ten or so failures. All I can say is that some anger was involved, and that I came close to throwing my water bottle across the room when the penguin screwed me over while I was about to leave with both girls freed. I was literally two tiles away from the exit. That was awful, let me tell you. In the end, I managed to beat this by memorizing where some of the triggers are, and by kinda cheating. See, I figured out that you can get back to the save point after rescuing one girl, and that it saved your accomplished progress. So by going from this "checkpoint", I eventually was victorious. I don't know if that is intended, but I also can't see how to beat this otherwise. I mean, without going utterly insane that is.
This is me winning, and I was super scared that the penguin would screw me over again.
Fuck you, Flare.
"Here you go!"
"Sis Latyss! And Sis Hayami!"
"Sorry for waiting."
"Thanks to Lady Fina's quick actions, we were able to get out safely."
"Now everyone's here."
"Finally it's my turn!"
"Unlike those two, you are gonna have a very difficult one."
That's a lie. Nothing in this game is harder than Fina's minigame.
"I want you to walk towards the entrance for the next trial."
The one behind him, dummy.
"I see you girls later!"
"Show him what you got!"
"Please be careful!"
"Watch out for those weird traps~"
"What the hell is this!?"
"Calm down pal. First go across here with multiple jumps."
"I'll show you!"
"Press the Action Key many times within 5 seconds. Only when you pressed enough times, you'll be able to jump across, or you may enjoy my private pool! Good luck! Ready - START!!"
I can't tell you how many times you need to hit the Action Key to beat this. I just mashed it a bunch, still fueled by anger, and beat it in one try.
On to the next room.
This is a red herring, and you actually need to search the desk. Enjoy how Ryle tries to outsmart a magical table
"No, it was just my hunch."
"Or maybe it was too obvious."
"I don't like this dude~...Now I'm gonna test your IQ."
"An IQ test!? (Uh-oh, I'm not good at this...)"
"Hm-hm! I can see your troubled face already!"
"Or maybe I was faking it?"
"Whatever! Anyway, you must give 3 correct answers!"
"What if I get 1 wrong?"
"Then you can't pass here, idiot~"
"Hmm, maybe I should practice my strikes on you..."
"H-Hey! Stop!! I'm one of the precious historical artifacts, you uneducated baboon!"
"So what! Bad historical artifacts like you should be removed before harming any more people!"
"Enough chattering! Better resume the game or the "Player" will RESET us..."
Nothing bad happens when you fail these questions, so you can just try again and brute force it.
"You have pretty good memory."
"By the way, how do you know my past?"
"Don't get bothered with tiny details. And let's proceed, shall we?"
"Last question. Listen carefully!"
"How would you pass through such a barrier?"
This is kind of a trap question, because the last answer seems like Ryle has no idea. But it's the right one.
"Then I'll...warp to where my friends are!"
"I can warp to any place if I can recall the scenery I've seen before. So I can just skip the barrier."
".....Good. Go to the next trial!"
Ryle's trial is really not bad, especially if you compare it to the others!
Our goal here, is to reach the door and not get murdered by the randoms. That is actually a very real possibility, depending on how experienced your Ryle is. The chest has 15 Breakfast Jellos, which is kinda weird. Yeah, you need your MP down here, but a little free health would also have been nice as you'll see in a moment.
We've already seen those guys a few times before, but down here, you meet a beefed up version! My basic attacks did zero damage, and without using armor debuffs, Ryle's specials also did greatly reduced damage.
On the other hand, the giants do solid damage. And their basic attack clocks in at roughly half of that.
Yeah, fighting them depletes your health quite a bit. Good thing that I have like 90 potions on me
"Is the proof inside that chest?...Means I have to fight for it."
"The name is Necromancer! Let's fight!!"
"Necromancer!? It can control the undeads!"
"Hee Hee! I shall suck your soul dry to the bone! Summon Golem!"
"I better do something about that guy before he summons another one!"
Okay, this fight can be hard when your Ryle is lacking some Levels. But for me it's not bad. Of course, you want to focus on the mage and ignore the golems, because he'll just resurrect them.
The mage can do some damage with his dark spells, but the golems are real sluggish and Ryle mostly dodges their attacks. I just use an armor debuff on the mage, and then shred him with Ryle's Versa Slash.
"Nice fight...but don't forget...Power alone can't protect the ones you love..."
"Power alone is the path to self destruction..."
"Sessha wonder how Ryle Dono is doing in there..."
"Will he be alright?"
"Since he's good at making us worry about him, why don't we just relax and wait here?"
"But he might be suffering now~"
"He'll make it through like always."
"See I told you so!"
"Glad to see you "
"Now tell us how we can pass through the ice wall near the Abyss."
"...Alright then. Let's begin!.....We got company here."
"It can't be!!"
"Didn't that guy get killed by Ryle back in Factoria!?"
"What? Then how come the same person can be here now!?"
Well, whoever that guy is, we need to fight him now!
"After the battle, the "Attraction" of the girls in the party will increase, also Fina is a good choice for this time. Total of 4 members for the battle. And the battle shall start once you step out the temple entrance."
This is Flare's way of telling us that the next fight is going to be hard, and that having Fina's skills would be a huge help. Nudge - nudge, wink - wink, you know? I'm not going to force Fina on you, because the game will do that eventually, but taking her along is a pretty good idea. It's not required though, so vote for the three girls that you want.