The Let's Play Archive

Septerra Core

by ToxicFrog

Part 19: how u mine for lenses

^^^ To answer your question: yes, it does.  The explosives actually look usable, but if you try nothing happens. 

19: how u mine for lenses

It's time to wreck Doskias's mining operation. A quick trip back to Shell 4 to put Grubb in the party and buy some equipment for Badu and we're ready to go.

Back in the Underlost village, we swap Badu in and start gearing up. He's a combat monster; half again as much power as Maya (and twice as much as Grubb), lots of health, lots of armour...he hits hard and can take a lot of punishment. Unfortunately he's also very slow. The Cat's Paw here will give him some much-needed speed.

He also has a strange equipment set. He uses skin armour and claw-wrap boots, an equipment type shared by no other party members, and like Led he also has a unique weapon type, knives. On the one hand, it means he can't share gear with other party members; on the other, there's no confusion over who gets the best armour of that type.

A brief rest in the bone hut to heal up leaves everyone in perfect shape. On the way out, we can ask the chief for clarification on the Hell God:

Is the Hell God still around?
Unsure. But we wounded it, struck off one of its claws. It still in old village deep in mold forest.

We can also have Badu talk to him, but as the Underlost language is untranscribable I've had to record a video.

On the way out, we can check this piece of artwork.

What is this a carving of? It looks like the creature that protected Gemma's Fortress.
Hell God. Unleashed by outlanders years ago.
The Ankarans and Jinam?
Yes...They dig too deep. Hell God come from womb of Core and destroy all. Destroy village. We move here. Claw of God still in old village. Hell God, live in Lava. Can stand much heat. Beware.
Where is this old village?
In Mold Forest. You no go. Deep forest is poison to outlanders. Need helmets.
You mean gas masks?

With the Hell God coming up in conversation so much, there's little doubt that it will be important later. For now, though, we have bigger fish to fry. Back to the caves!

Badu's first fight! We'll start off, as is traditional, with his tier 3 attack...

That's not an auspicious start.

He connects on the next attack, though, and instantly dispatches the bug.

I have him try out Core Knife on the next bug.

It looks nice and does twice as much damage as a tier 1 attack, but the cost is prohibitive, and the damage drops off quickly at tier 2 and 3. If you really want the most damage/time out of Badu, using a Core Knife every turn will get you considerably more damage overall than even tier 3 attacks, but will also drain your Core reserves very quickly.

The rest of the caves we've all seen before, but as we approach the exit Badu signals the party to stop.

What is it?

A lightning-fast strike knocks a layer of rock off the wall and reveals a vein of silvery ore.

He must have been able to sense the ore in the wall.

We can, as always, examine it for more info.

This stuff looks valuable. But, I'd have to dig it out if I wanted any.
It looks like smelted silver. No wonder Ankara and Jinam fought over mining rights.
#### #### ####.
He seems to recognize the ore. I'll bet his people have been working with it for hundreds of years.

Grubb may be a shit-hot inventor but I don't think he's up to speed when it comes to metallurgy. Nonetheless, we should remember this stuff and come back when we having mining tools.

Speaking of remembering stuff and coming back...sadly, all he turns up is a bottle of smelling salts.

The real reason we're here is that the hermit has some new conversation options following our discussion with the Underlost chief.

[Hell God] Do you know anything about the Hell God?
We dug one up! The damn thing came right out of the lava of the earth. I don't know about you, but I don't wanna tangle with a critter that can live in lava.
[gas masks] Do you have any breather masks for the Mold Forest...
No, but there's probably plenty back in Ankara. Probably just sittin' around in the research lab. You won't need any unless you plan to go real deep into the mold forest, though.
[talk] What was this place?
Mining operation...We must've done a lousy job, cause somebody blew us to bits!
[talk] #### ####.
Well done girl, you set 'em free!

What we've all been waiting for, of course, is this.

Cool...It looks like some old ruins.
Yeah, but ruins from what?
Maybe the locals know how to get past it.

Well, that was pretty slick. I wonder what else that radar power could be good for?

Maya's grasp of ultrasonics seems about as good as Grubb's of metallurgy, but no matter. Onwards!

The northern Mold Forest contains a recolour of the familiar Unicorn Beetle, but this one has a few surprises. First of all, its basic attack is a health leech, not the damaging spores used by its cousins on other shells.

Secondly, it's armoured like a giant crab - that was the same attack that was hitting other enemies for ~150 damage.

It follows that this is a good time to try out our newly acquired Fire card.

The bug turns out to be shielded against fire too, but the damage is enough to finish it off.

The upper left corner of the forest contains this chest; it holds a potion and a Sea Prism - an accessory that reduces incoming water damage. Apart from that, it's a linear path to the exit populated with the same enemies as the lower half of the forest.

And at the end of that path is the mining complex.

The main enemy here is the standard Chosen footsoldier, same as the ones we saw in Armstrong.

Although they seem a bit more willing to use beam weapons now.

Newly appearing is the Chosen Ninja. They have a basic melee attack, and can throw stun grenades to stun one target. They also have a shuriken attack that hits all targets in a cone.

The exit is guarded by a new enemy. I've never been entirely clear on whether it's power armour, or an autonomous attack platform, but in either case it looks intimidating; the arm-mounted cannons are effective against single targets, or it can sweep rapid fire across the entire party.

Turns out, however, that Grubb knows how to take them apart quickly.

Entering the second half of the mining complex
, we run into the Underlost slaves. They regard us silently for a moment, then slip away towards the exit.

Right behind them was this Chosen guard, apparently frozen with terror at the sight of us.

Heavy armour becomes almost commonplace in this area, but Grubb can still repair them to death, and even he doesn't they aren't all that durable.

The northwestern area has a minecart containing a Metal Buckle - an accessory that boosts strength, usable only by male characters - but apart from that there's nothing interesting here. Loot has been thin on the ground recently.

So all that's left to do is to finish things off.

Gunnar's fleet is on his way. Surrender.
Gunnar? So, he sent you to do his dirty work while he runs home to ask for some more toys, eh? Shortsighted fool. Well, too late, girl. Doskias's lenses are already completed. He only awaits the right time to unleash them on the Core.
Then you're of no use to us. We must reach those lens platforms. Surrender or die.
No, I think you can deal with my mining helgak. It should be enough to destroy you!

Boss Fight - Mining Helgak (Viddler)

The mining helgak. It doesn't look terribly mobile and I'm not sure why the party doesn't just run past it in pursuit of Kaleb, but hey, a bossfight's a bossfight.

First step is to get everyone barriered up.

The mining helgak has only one attack: both pods on its back will fire pulsed lasers, which kind of sting. It's less dangerous than the sonic emitter was, though, and with the right tactics you can easily defeat it without healing.

Hitting it inflicts no damage, but causes it to make noises and shake the screen. The trick is to have one or two characters keep hitting it, while your heaviest hitter waits for an opening.

Specifically, the opening of its headplates to reveal the head. Once this happens, you get one shot at it and then it closes back up again. At this point you may be wondering why Grubb and Maya are fully charged and Badu's the one trying to get the boss open, when we need to deliver the most damage possible in a single blow.

This would be why.

Four pillars rise out of the earth and a glowing pool of lava forms between them. Out of it rises Ouroboros, the three-headed fire wyrm. what

It spits a stream of flame before vanishing.

The mining helgak's face is wrapped in a swiftly contracting circle of flame, and melted. This is around five times as much damage as we could get by hitting it with Badu; the mining helgak, being earth-aspected, is highly vulnerable to fire.

It reacts to this by creating a lot of noise and falling rocks (which don't actually damage anyone) and then closing back up.

You may be wondering what happens if you pry it open and then don't have someone ready to go. Well, in order to answer this question, I have deliberately held off on attacking this time for the sake of you, gentle readers.

The answer is: it bitchslaps your entire party every single turn until you get it to close up again.

As it happens, one more casting is all that's needed to finish it for good.

In its death throes, it brings the ceiling down onto it. The party somehow scavenges 13,500 gold and a level up for everyone from the remains.

We have to follow Kaleb to the lenses!

Fortunately, there's a skimmer parked right next to the helgak bay; it's the work of a moment to hotwire it and take off towards the lens control ship.

The lens control ship is pretty small and not very interesting. The nearer switch disables the force field blocking the small room to the left; the further switch disables the force field blocking the exit. The enemies are the same as the ones in the mining complex and can mostly be avoided, if you don't feel like fighting them.

The container on the bridge(?) contains a Solid Strike, which (as the name implies) is an accesory that boosts Strike. You can generally get better results with equipment that boosts Agility or Perception, though, which boosts not only Strike as a side effect but other stats as well.

Up on the deck of the ship, Doskias is in a bad way; Gunnar has boarded the ship personally and defeated him in single combat.

Yes, Gunnar can get a bit pompous at times.

Selina shows up at just this moment, sees what's going on, and summons a force of ghosts...

..which blast Gunnar backwards across the deck, stunning him, and buy Doskias the time he needs to activate the lift he's lying on.

I only meant to stop him, not let him get away...

Just then, the rest of Gunnar's fleet arrives.

The party flees the deck, back towards the skimmer hangar.

They undock from the stricken control ship...

...and make their escape as Doskias's plans fall in ruins behind them...

...towards the shell far below.

Alright, that's it. Game's over.

No, just kidding. Next time on Let's Play Septerra Core: drugs, tattoos, and violence. Don't miss it!