Part 36: Hit By A Plot TruckHit By A Plot Truck
Summer's almost done, which you can tell because everyone in town is talking about the upcoming crop festival. This one will be harder since typhoons hate you and your attempts at leveling crops, but it's still not too bad.
But for today, I have bigger things in mind.
Music: Vale River
I think I might be able to cross the river with a magic seed...now, where to find one?
Link immediately hints at this dungeon's gimmick(and reminds you that magic seeds exist if you're like me and never use them).
The first couple screens go just fine with the help of my superaxe...
But I can only get as far as the crop patch before I have no way of crossing the river.
Access to the next tier of ore is appreciated anyway.
The way forward is tucked away in the flower shop for a mere 3200g.
Sadly, Link's not getting any banana magic today.
Like the sword magic seed, the lilypad has its own HP bar and will be targeted by nearby enemies. Remember that, it's going to be important.
You can step on the lilypad to skate over the ground, but more importantly...
...these ramps will let you go into and out of the water.
You can't get very far upriver before you're forced to go on land again, though.
Penguins are exactly as deadly as their name suggests.
This is also the point where you're stopped from just rushing to the end like you could in every other dungeon - it's not quite as inexplicable-yet-elegant as the room barriers in RF4, but it does the job.
That should do it!
Thankfully you can make a few shortcuts along the way, so you're not stuck doing the entire convoluted path when you return. And this case is mandatory, because...
Mysterious dungeon ice cream!
And also you need to kill the monsters on both sides of the river to proceed.
Even with rushing as much as I can, there's only so far Link can go in one day.
Thank god getting home is literally just a few uses of the Escape spell.
Of course, now I have a festival to win!
That's a strange thing to think about.
I mean green peppers are so good, but so many people don't like them!
Tee-hee. You're such a nice girl, Monica.
Hot take: Green peppers are okay, but red peppers are better.
Ah! It talked?!
Hot take: Don't create talking vegetables.
In a cute bit of continuity, Gaius has decided to grow this season's vegetable in a higher tier of ore.
Brief refresher of the rules: Your flower/vegetable is judged by its level, how long it takes to grow, and whether it's in season. I've brought a small variety of summer vegetables because I'm honestly not sure which is the best.
This is quite seasonal. It fits the contest. This is well-grown. Your effort shows. Hmm, not bad! I can taste the love. Wonderful!
Karina, of all people?
We lost by 10 points. That's some bullshit. Reload.
Let's try a pumpkin instead.
This is quite seasonal. It fits the contest. This must have taken a lot of effort. It's a tricky crop. I appreciate that. Hmm, not bad! I can taste the love. Wonderful!
Wells' growth time phrase went from the generic one to the good one, so I think we've got this.
Nobody even came close to my score this time, so I'm inclined to believe that the cucumber round was just unlucky RNG bullshit.
And we get the traditional reward of a huge stack of cooking bread.
Music: Vale River
Alright, back to the dungeon. We have a boss to beat!
If I defeat all the monsters in that cave, I might be able to move on.
That's the dead-end cave I ended at last night. Guess I should go back in th-
-ere and beat up some flying skulls.
This room is actually really annoying, between all the stuff phasing in and out of visibility(and attack-ability) and the blue skulls hurling rocks and icicles at you.
These guys in particular take forever when you can only get in a hit or two before they phase out again.
There's a second set of fields if you're a crazy person who wants to fight through an entire dungeon to water some crops. I think I'll pass.
And just past them is the entry to the boss room. About time!
Fun fact: You can murder the save point if you're not careful with your aim. (It comes back when you re-enter the room)
And you'll probably want to save, because the boss is pretty hard if you don't know what you're doing(and don't have strong weapons dropped in your lap by the RNG).
Meet boss four. It's a wall. Of death. Named Death Wall.
The people of Norad are not very creative with names.
I finally found you! I'll send you to the Forest of Beginnings! Here I come!
Music: Death Wall
The first of this fight is that Death Wall slowly advances, leaving you with less and less of the screen to work with.
The attack he's preparing here is a rapidfire line of icicles. He can also use a spiral of four icicles, icy rocks raining from above, icicles randomly(and rapidly) appearing from the ground, icicles that form a circle around you while launching at you one by one, and icicles rapidly fired all over the screen.
I get the impression there may be an elemental theme going on here. None of these actually hurt that much on their own, but that's small comfort. Because...
After a couple hits the head detaches from the wall and starts attacking on its own.
Many of its attacks are still variations on throwing ice at you, but now they hurt a lot more.
Secret strategy: Keep your lilypad out, because he'll waste a lot of time attacking it.
But not all of his time. He can also turn into a sword for some reason.
And a drill. Once he turns red, he gets insanely fast and hard-hitting, to the point where it's hard to get a few hits in without getting instagibbed.
I only brought 5 healing potions into this fight, which was really, really poor planning.
But in the end, Death Wall died as he lived: Pointlessly attacking a lilypad.
Now I've sent all the monsters back to the Forest of Beginnings. Then...I bet there's going to be another orb.
Godspeed, lilypad. You did good work.
We got a sentient piece of ice to use in crafting. Neat.
That's it. That's the entire memory.
GEE WHO COULD HAVE SEEN THIS PLOT POINT COMING.
But why would the flowers be part of my memory...?
Time to go home, I guess.
I love that the timing for all these has people standing around in the middle of the night for no apparent reason.
Were you looking at the tree?
Um....Do you know something about the Sharance flowers?
About the flowers? What?
How can we get the Sharance flowers to bloom?
How to get the Sharance flowers to bloom? Hmph. All I can say is that it hasn't happened for 50 years.
You know. I think the flowers won't bloom because of those univir.
!! Why is that?
You know that the univir used to live here?
Yes, I've heard.
Ever since they left town, the Sharance Tree began to lose its brilliance. And then finally, it stopped blooming. I know they must've done something to the Tree because they were kicked out.
But you don't have any evidence of that!
Hmph. The fact is the Tree stopped blooming flowers. That's evidence enough.
Guys I'm really getting the impression that the fantasy racism might be a big plot point here. Maybe. Possibly. Potentially.
Thankfully Ondorus is up late(by Rune Factory standards).
The Sharance flowers? Why do you ask?
I want them to blossom.
...That might be difficult.
Those flowers are special..They won't blossom normally. Especially in these circumstances...
What does that mean?
The tree will need the "bond beyond the races" to blossom its flowers. Basically, we must get along with the humans in order for its flowers to blossom.
But the humans hate us, and we...Kuruna the way she is...I want the flowers to blossom, too, but...It's too difficult to make amends between humans and monsters.
I think I'm figuring out a theme here. It's real subtle though, so I don't blame you if you haven't noticed it yet.
I'll do it!
You will? Unfortunately, you're a monster. You won't be able to do it...
No...only I can do it.
... (If I reveal myself now, I might worsen the situation...)
(But...This is all I can do! I know Ondorus will understand!)
I'm sorry for hiding this from everyone. But I'm sure that they would listen to me because I am half monster and half human.
Note that Link changes back to wooly form.
But what do you intend on doing if they do listen?
We will hold a festival.
Yes, a festival. One where both townspeople and monsters can come together and enjoy. That's the kind of festival I want to have.
A festival bringing together monsters and humans. How about calling it a "Unity Festival"...that sounds like fun.
Link, I'll do what I can to help.
Thank you very much!
I will speak with Kuruna. Your job will be to convince the humans.
Talk to the hyper-racist about reuniting the races. This can't possibly go wrong.
Wells, I know it's late, but can I axe you a question?
Then let's go to your house. I'm sure you'll feel more at ease.
Yes. Thank you.
...I want to hold a "Unity Festival".
What are you talking about?! There's no way we can do that!
But you said that you used to live together!
*sigh* ...That was a long time ago. Why are you even bringing it up?
I found out how to get the "Sharance flowers" to bloom.
Is that right?!
A univir told me how...
WHAT?! You went to see them?!
Yes. According to him, "Sharance flowers" need the "bond beyond the races". The tree uses the "bond beyond the races" as nourishment for its flowers.
I'd say he has a point, but this is a universe where a pancake-loving dragon has to die every so often to provide runes to the land & a man with a fantastic hat was prepared to eat a tank. Nothing is absurd here.
When the tree grew before, it was when I made contact with the settlement.
...That can't be. I don't know how you managed to meet them. It's nourished by the "bond beyond the races"? Hmph! How absurd!! You have no evidence that he was telling the truth.
I believe that I can be that proof...
What do you mean?
I'm actually half human and half monster.
The tree grew because I linked the town's people and those in the settlement.
What are you talking about...?
I've said this before, but it's really really fortunate that Link is half-Wooly and not half-troll or flying ice skull or something.
I was able to link the town as a monster, and the settlement as a human...
But I'm not enough to get the flowers to bloom!
I'm sorry I hid it from you...
The "Unity Festival". I'd like to give you the permission, but I can't right now. I don't think that holding the "Unity Festival" as you hide your secret is wise. I'd like to hold the "Unity Festival" after you've revealed your secret. And if everyone's okay with it...I'll allow the "Unity Festival".
Wells! Thank you very much!
Fun fact: According to the text dump, Wells will flat-out not let you proceed if you haven't revealed your secret to any of the bachelorettes yet. This is presumably to put some brakes on a "rush the dungeons, ignore the townspeople" playthrough.
Other fun fact: The bachelorettes have alternate dialogue for the Wooly reveal scenes in their quests if you've already gone through the upcoming bit. The reason should be obvious, but it's a nice touch anyway.
Everyone in town is here, including Blue Butterfly and Random Bird. They're just...mostly offscreen. Trust me.
I wanted to discuss something with all of you. I want to hold a Unity Festival to repair ties between the town and the desert settlement.
What?! A what?
Are you serious? What do you mean? Why would you do that?
I want the Sharance Tree to blossom with flowers. We need the bond beyond the races for that..I want you all to help.
If we live so close to each other, why not be friends?
You think the univir will listen to us?
I'll handle that.
More customers would be nice! But can we really ask you to do everything?
It's something only I can do.
You have a plan?
Well, not quite...
You see, I'm......I'm both human and monster!
The exclaimation bubble's getting some real work done today.
Weird...(But kinda cute.)
So cute. 🎵
Even the game low-key acknowledges that this would go a lot differently if Link's monster form wasn't cute.
You're not mad that I kept this secret?
I mean, you're just a wooly...
It's pretty funny.
Too cute! I could do experiments on you.
I agree! Woolies are not cute!
So how are you going to convince them?
They don't like humans, but they welcome monsters. They may listen to me, since I'm a bit of both.
What if they insist that they love humans? Then what?
I'll keep trying no matter how long it takes!
Ha ha! Sounds like Link!
Yes, he's a man who finishes what he sets out to do.
Well, I don't see why not then!
Everyone...Thank you for everything.
Yes, thank you very much.
Don't thank me. This is everyone's choice.
Oh right, you're here.
So that wooly was you, Link?
I'm sorry I didn't say anything...
It's okay. You must have been lonely with your secret.
Let me know if I can help! I'm...I'm always on your side, Link!
I think running back to the Univir settlement can wait until tomorrow.