Part 41: Haha, WTF?Haha, WTF?
Let's find out what awaits us down here...
"So you have finally come this far..Humans...I got good news for you. Sacred Dragon Flare may successfully rescue your queen."
"That also means your comrade would fall, but you're very calm."
"She was expendable right from the start. As long as she keeps Flare busy, I won't expect any more from her."
"I won't let you lay a finger on our Gaiares!"
"Heh! Gaiares? Why would I bother to waste my energy on that ruin?"
"Don't try to fool us! Otherwise why would you be here?"
"Alright, then why don't all of you just take a look at...THAT?"
FUCKING DUN DUN DUN!!
Yep, Gaiares was somehow under Factoria all the time. And do you wanna know something cool? It doesn't really matter any more! Just let go and stop thinking about it! It's done
"OMG-! It's the lost capital!! The sunken city of Gaiares!?"
"Correct, the place had no use for us. However with little rumors, I turned it into the perfect bait to get your attention."
"You wanted us instead!?"
"We came this far for..."
"Then what is this all..."
"Did you sink the city?"
"No, I had the pleasure of witnessing its fall."
"Cut the crap!!"
"Heh heh! Can't you see what's going on by now?"
"The ruin is right under Factoria Castle! What makes you THINK that we would do this without destroying Factoria first?"
"I know! That doesn't make sense! They would've just let Gaiares crash into Factoria!"
"Which means the Kingdom of Factoria..."
"...was built right on top of the sunken Gaiares capital?"
"And the current Factorian royalty has been hiding the truth from their people...how clever?"
"Then why the Warp Device? If not to repair'n use it?"
"Repair? Now look who's full of crap here?"
"(Was he lying to confuse us? Then why they...?)"
It's okay, Fina. You're just as confused as the rest of us.
Also, the Warp Device suddenly does things...
"Ale? The Warp Device is moving."
"Eh? Still active?"
"(Ryle, can't you just warp us into Gaiares now?)"
"(No! That's too risky! The gravity field is unstable.)"
"Enough chatter! Forget about Gaiares, you won't be going there anyway. I already have arranged a much better place for ALL of you. To another DIMENSION that is!!"
"The Warp Device!?"
"It's bad! Everyone RUN-!!"
"You modified the machine!"
"Bingo. Now it can be used as a "Dimensional Cannon"-! Wiping ALL of you out from this world!! Finally got my drift? You are my first target practice~"
"Damn you! Let's get outta here!"
Okay, I quickly have to interject here. So, as it turns out, Garudia's grand plan was to lure us here and blast us to another dimension with his cannon. Makes total sense and isn't dumb at all, right? Well, if you take the trope of the mustache twirling villain as the benchmark, it kinda sorta does make sense. Like, a real evil villain wouldn't be content with just killing his arch enemies. No, he would come up with a ridiculous plan to get his personal vision of revenge. Also, there is still a piece of the puzzle that we don't know about, and that will actually put a lot more sense into Garudia's actions. With that said though, I still think that it's dumb.
Anyway, here comes the cannon
"What the!? It's Teleport! So it was you! Flare Delstar-! Argh, you warped the blast away!!"
All hail our Lord and Savior, Anime Jesus
"Damn it! It was so close!! Funei you idiot! Can't even stall her long enough? Hm!" *waved hand signal*
"R-Raymah!? 3 of them!"
"Maybe they look the same as Raymah. But they are much stronger! You'll all die here!!"
"Well it sure beats fighting Funei!"
"Look who's gonna lose now!"
"But be careful! Garudia didn't bluff for nothing!"
"My Magical Octogram shall come in handy!"
"We gotta take the device back!!"
"Sylph! Hilde! Ready to fight!!"
"Mm~ bullets bullets~"
"You won't take down Factoria that easy this time!!"
This version of Garudia looks a lot more dangerous than last time!
"You'll pay for messing with the entire kingdom just to lure us out!"
"I made you look good by doing that, and you are complaining about it!?"
"Ryle! Don't get into his mind game! Just focus on how to win now!"
"Bullets loaded, safety lock off! Ready to attack!!"
"Oops, forgot to unlock the trigger lock~"
"You won't get away from this!" *clinching fists*
"Everyone! Let's kick these bastards out of Factoria for good!!"
Okay, unsurprisingly, this is another cutscene battle. However, this one can actually be hard, because Garudia is tough and can also dish out some solid damage.
His first action is to cast an elemental shield, which makes Latyss and Mariel almost useless. Mariel still has her gun skills, but Latyss is completely out of the fight due to that shield. The other girls wouldn't have fared much better, as his shield also protects against Holy. Ryle and Caris still can do some damage with their sword skills, but Garudia's defense reduces their damage too. Your best choice is to just cast all your buffs, and stay defensive for the first part of this fight.
"What's wrong? Can't keep up with me? Come on, last time you did better than that!"
"What's going on!? He didn't even get a scratch!"
"Or maybe it's because I was holding back last time?"
"You're kiddin! We were using our full power!"
"In that case, we are in big trouble!"
"Now that is the biggest denial you humans have had for centuries! You think you can match us in strength! And you convince your tiny minds by picking on only the weakest class of Mahzoks!? No wonder you never learn!!"
"As individuals, we may be weak. But don't forget we can unite our power and transcend anything even CHAOS!!"
"Maybe we don't know how to fully utilize it yet, but we got no choice but to keep on fighting! And I'll transcend you even in the slightest moment when it's possible!!"
"Interesting! Then show me that power of yours!!"
"You bet I will!!"
"(Maybe he's giving us hints?)"
"(Hmm...maybe he got an idea.)"
"Finally I can see why you were almost invincible!"
"(Here goes nothing!!)"
"(I never got the move right, but it worked finally on time.)"
How fortunate that Ryle is secretly learning new sword techniques. I guess he does that when we aren't looking
"No damage? I don't think so! You were merely self-regenerating at very fast speed."
"Can't recover fast? Of course you can't! I aimed at your core!! Like the heart in our body, your core materialized when you engaged the contact!"
"Ar...gh! This is!"
"You thought we were ignorant about the anatomy of your kind?"
"Whew...so he saw through everything."
"Now you've turned me into total counter mode!"
"Not bad Ryle! Let's finish him off!!"
Nobody told you about it, but Garudia was actually immortal in the first phase of the fight. He still has his shield, but any damage done from this point will stick, instead of being healed in secret.
Ryle's new move is your best option at this point, though Caris' skills also do okay. That is, as long as you don't use her skills that are infused with fire, because the shield will negate them too.
"You just don't give up, do you!?"
"Like I said, you can't overpower us!"
"I didn't want to use this. But you leave me with no choice."
"It....doesn't look good at all!"
I wanna say that we already saw this skill before. Maybe during the fight with Graphost? I'm not sure, but it seems familiar.
"What!? The ultimate defense against any form of physical attacks!"
"Now your attacks are totally useless against me. I also added my Barrier Field so your magic poses no threat as well!"
He means the shield spell that he casted in the beginning, jfyi.
"Now he's impenetrable!!"
"That means there's nothing we can do?"
"I can't use React Wind to lift that Aegis Barrier!"
"It's not over yet! We must continue to fight!!"
This phase of the fight can be dangerous if you haven't been paying attention to how the game works. Garudia will shrug off all your attacks, and there's nothing you can do about that. So, what do you do then? Well, you heal&defend until the plot rescues you
"Damn it! So is this the end of our road!?"
"There's no way you can win this time!! But you should be proud of being able to fight us this far!"
"(I can't give up now! But is there any way left!? What can I do? Their lives all depend on me!)"
Oh no, don't tell me...
This is the most unexpected callback ever! I actually voiced a good and long "Whaaaat" when I was recording this part, true story.
"Not in my dreams would I have expected that this stupid questionare could come in handy like this."
"What the!? Passing through Aegis Barrier!"
"Did he just charged through with the spell on!?"
"Now I'll finish you!!"
"He did it! Both barriers are gone!"
"Now the barriers are gone! Sylph! Hilde! Use your full power!!"
"Hilde! Come on!"
"Sylph~ She's quite an abusive summoner~"
"I told you!"
"Garudia! You're OVER!!"
"Are they really human!?"
Now Garudia is fucked, simple as that. Everybody does full damage again, so I just unload on him until it's over.
"But we Mahzoks won't give up this easily...It's not over...YET!"
It's over for you though.
"...Other more powerful Mahzoks..."
"Where's Lady Flare?"
"So everything's been settled? Then I better finish them as well."
"EEK~ With just ONE hit!?"
"Well then, let Meldia take care of the Warp Device."
"Thank GOD she'S on our side...~"
The girls in Ryle's party get two att points, and beating Garudia also gives out 10 Victory points. Which is neat, because we're close to the point where I'm going to use them to get some special gear. Oh, also, how about pretty much all of our plot points being thrown away? That was great, right? Well, I don't want to leave you hanging in the air like that, so I'm going to end the update with the short discussion that follows up on completing this part.
"But we were very close to become the first victims of the Dimensional Cannon. Thanks to the early warning from her Highness."
Here is something I want to point out, when the Queen talked about the "real goal", she was referring to Garudia's cool plan. We still don't know what the Mahzoks as a whole are planning
"And I'm so glad that Queen Elizeh is safe now."
"Yes, we would not be here now if she was killed."
"I know why. Because Mahzoks need a live body in order to engage contact."
"That's only the case for regular Mahzoks. Funei is different. She can take over even dead corpses."
"Even the dead people?"
"Huh? Then why didn't Funei kill the Queen?"
"Maybe she couldn't stop the body from decompose."
"(She didn't get it at all.)"
"By the way, what will happen to the sunken city?"
"Mages from Meldia shall arrive within 2 or 3 days. They'll handle the rest."
"Actually I was surprised to find out that Ryle is the 2nd royal prince of Factoria~"
"Well we kept it from Lady Flare."
"I've never seen her surprised like that before."
"I know, I haven't seen her like this in years!"
"I didn't know either~ Why didn't you tell me~"
"But you already heard it from Lord Zestrum back in Meldia Castle! You forgot??"
"...Oops! I forgot~"
"Even Miss Orubia this time~"
"....I wonder how long they will stay like this?"
"Some day you'll make us freeze to death I swear!"
Oh Mariel, will you ever stop being the punching bag of the group?
"Had no other choice. She better learn the lesson, I mean otherwise..."
"I wonder what this jumping "thing" is doing here."
"I know, as if it's alive."
"Let me put it away. Too much distraction."
"Very rare to see someone who can live inside a chest~"
"How sad....that is~"
Here the crew babbles about not really knowing what to do now. Fina wants to train and make everyone stronger, while Latyss points out that we never actually visited the Abyss. Training sounds good to me, and we don't really have a reason to go to the Abyss anymore.
Oh yeah, there is also that...
"There is one more gateway other than the one to Gaiares. It's the gateway to Dracoheim, where the "Dragon Arms" are kept."
Oh yes, she wants Fina to become the next Sacred Dragon! Of course, Fina is all worried about not being able to control her powers, because she destroyed her house that one time when she tried to power-up her sword. But her mother says that getting the Dragon gear won't transform her right away. She can still make use of the stuff without becoming the next Anime Jesus. The rest of the group also says that going there now is a good idea, because the Mahzoks otherwise could ruin the place before we can get there.
Nope, fuck you. The decision is made.
Ryle still has the mental image that Rollslay gave him, so we can just warp there.