Part 105: Episode XCIX: DowntimeEpisode XCIX: Downtime
Following that Hojo Laboratory fiasco, and a subsequent complete waste of time dungeon, we find ourselves back at Mukyo-An with Yuri impatiently pacing back and forth while Karin flashes the camera for the umpteenth time in any given 20 minute stretch of the game. Seriously, it's been a trial to get shots of assort battles and avoid Karin upskirts. The default character action select camera is at a low angle facing a set of possible random directions and half the time for Karin it's oh hey. Could we not? It's bad enough the last achievement I have in NieR: Automata and the one always staring me in the face if I hit that game on Steam is the 2B upskirt achievement. You're making me feel skeevy, video games.
...I understand the situation.
For the most part. Using advanced science to extract a demonic entity from a Russian monarch affiliated cultist is... perhaps above my station on understanding. But...
I want you to work with Yuri and his companions. Help them any way you can.
Don't you worry about Yoshiko and me. Ishimura can't touch us as long as we're in the capital. Actually, from what I hear, he has his hands full with his own problems.
Such as that research center being destroyed and the wayward possessed cultist. And a vague, mysterious illness that only manifests itself as non-descript coughing to indicate poor health. You know the type I am describing, yes?
Now go. And aide your new allies in any way you can.
Yes sir. I'll go with the others, then.
Where could he have gone, that bastard?
Lousy teleporting jerks. I swear if that guy just shows up out of nowhere to zap me and immediately leaves, I'm gonna lose my shit! I'm not doing that again.
You've got to take it easy. Worrying won't help us find Nicolai.
You think I don't know that? Don't talk to me like my mother!
Yuri makes a dejected sigh and sits down next to Karin.
The thing is, this isn't the Nicolai we fought in Apoina Tower. He's a million times more dangerous...
Is it because he's been taken over by Astaroth?
Yeah, he's all god of destructiony juiced up now. I bet it gave him a huge level boost and I'm stuck still grinding back to where I was before I punched an alien god to death. This sucks.
He tried to control the soul of a demon and claim its power for his own. But the demon was stronger, so he's the one who wound up being controlled.
I'm sure getting his junk zapped by that weird machine didn't help his willpower either.
So Nicolai and Astaroth are sharing the same body?
Do you not remember the whole Rasputin thing...? It was literally the exact same case.
Yeah, I guess they're kind of similar, huh?
No... it's actually the same exact thing, though. Literally. The same thing.
I think Nicolai's in there somewhere, but it's Astaroth that has the power. Now the demon is free, I'm afraid to think of what it might do.
...Probably the same thing as when Rasputin was possessed by Asmodeus.
He did say something about leading the planet to the gates of hell or something dramatic like that.
<sighs> It's like a broken record with these guys. But it's a bad idea to just let an out of control dark god demon possession hang. I would uhh...
...Know a thing or two about that.
<sighs and gets bummed out>
What's wrong, young Yuri?
You seem depressed. So, there's no hope, eh?
<elbows him in the arm> Yuri!
Naniwa sits down next to Yuri.
What happens when you find the monster?
I'll waste it.
You think you can win?
I've punched out a few gods before. This won't even be the first one in a year.
Hmm. ...Then go to Katsuragi.
Kawashima stands up and looks to the horizon.
Yes, the Forest of the Wind. There's someone waiting to meet you.
To meet me? Who is it?
You'll know when you get there. But believe me, that person will be able to help you on your search.
So they'll have a character portrait?
<nods> Indeed. I believe they will, young Yuri.
<smile and nod at each other>
Music: Rising Sun ~ Japanese Town
Show a little more enthusiasm!
We actually have a clear destination for a change and one that probably isn't leading into an enemy ambush.
We know where we've gotta go, so let's go tell everyone back in town!
Nothing like a vague hint about a mysterious benefactor in some unseen location to get the JRPG motivation blood boiling.
We're done in Mukyo-An for now. Once more, we need to return to the mean streets of Nihonbashi since the rest of the party beyond Karin and Yuri have just decided to chill out in town after raiding a government research facility and murdering a large number of soldiers and the head researcher. As you do.
There is no clear indication of where our party members might have wandered off to. But we just need to hit pretty much every corner of the map to trigger their return to the fold.
The first being directly north at the central intersection of the area. That usually exits the map. But now...
Oh, Yuri! Look at all the stuff I bought! They'll make good souvenirs for Daddy and Alexei!
Plus, look at this cute new hat I picked up at a boutique down the road.
<tilts head> ...Isn't that the same hat you were wearing?
Tch. As if! That was a snow-white colored make. This is white cream colored material.
I can't really see the difference either.
Bah! I am surrounded by uncultured peasants! You have simply ruined my desire to continue shopping if my stylish efforts are going to go to waste.
What are you moaning about? I very kindly invited you out shopping with me. You should feel privileged!
<slumps down dejected> Invited me out?! I'm just here to carry all the stuff you buy! Jeez, I must be an idiot!
<points at Joachim> Did you say something?
Um... no, nothing!
There are two members recovered. If we return to the park we'll find Blanca and Kurando spending the eternal afternoon of Nihonbashi with Yoshiko Kawashima-2.
Oh, Yuri! You came to get Blanca, didn't you?
Yeah. But by the look on his face, I'd say he wants a little more of a walk!
I am also present. I will accompany you.
Yeah, sure. You do you, guy.
See you later, Blanca! I'll take you for a walk again when you come back!
Come back soon!
Our final stop in town is Great Gama's wrestling arena where we find Lucia and Gepetto hanging out near our traveling merchant... associates...
So you've finally figured out where we're going next, have you?!
Great! I was starting to get really bored!
Yeah, it's going to be a bit of a hike to get there unless there is suddenly convenient excuse to travel long distances across Japan lands in our lap in the next few minutes. And what are the odds of that happening...?
The party goes to leave the wrestling arena and return to the World Map, when...
OLD Music: Bacon's Juice
Finally found me, huh?!
Oh, you're still alive?!
We... weren't looking for you, to be honest. We had a quest.
A quest that involved ditching me in the wilderness?!
Well, you know how quests go.
How did you ever get off that mountain?!
Hmph!! I wasn't about to die until I got a chance to give you all a piece of my mind!
I didn't sleep hundreds of years in a coffin in the back of a cursed Welsh monastery to be treated like this!! I was nearly eaten by wild bears after you left! The indignity!
Hey, come on. We didn't have a choice. You were the only one that could fix that ship.
What were we going to do? Punch it? Bark at it? Wrestle the broken parts? C'mon, you're the only one that knows science stuff.
Plus, I figured the bears would decide you were too nasty to eat.
You look less like bacon and more like burnt jerky.
You expect me to believe that?! You ran away screaming like babies!! I never saw anyone run that fast!!
I've never seen anyone mash the escape from battle option so quickly. Like scared children!
<holds up arms> Waaaa!! Just like that!!
Is that right?
<give each other an eye-rolling look>
Yeah, that's right!
<sobs and pounds the ground>
Okay! Time to let begones be bygones!
She's right. Let's just forget it.
So you were abandoned in the woods full of feral beasts and likely ghosts and a few demons. We've all been there before. Well, not me, per se. But...
<continues to pound the ground> Don't you d-daare!
<crawls away and sobs> Hmph!! What kind of people are you?! It's not funny!!
<laugh at the upset old man they abandoned to go adventuring>
Now that comic relief reintroduction of Roger Bacon is complete, we now access to an airship and with it the ability to return to any location in the game. But that's a story for another day. With this, our time in this chapter is complete. Tune in next time as our adventures take us to the mysterious Forest of Wind as Shadow Hearts: Covenant continues.
That was certainly a chapter chalked through with filler. But we do have a number of "new" entries. Even if they're almost entirely old entries with some added coloring and bits hammered on, outside the boss. Let's take a look.
All cops are bastards. All armored stormtroopers are cops. Therefore...
It also has a canon. And exclusively uses the cannon.
Well, we can make it fly and punch things more efficiently now. What? Making it shoot things?! Don't be absurd. That gatling gun mounted on the bottom side of the chasse? Why, that's just for intimidation factors. You know the costs and weight factors to make that functional?! Nonsense!
I wouldn't call anything about this Dr. Wily ass capsule robot "handsome." Nor would I consider comically large pincers, buzzsaws and drills the latest in weapon technology. But I suppose I am no scientist.
The Mental Realm.
He'd be starting a harassment campaign against Karin right now on Twitter if the internet had been invented yet.
Video: Episode 99 Highlight Reel
Mukyo-An Concept Art - I'd chill out there.