Part 66: Episode LXI: The Cyrillic ShuffleEpisode LXI: The Cyrillic Shuffle
Music: In Darkness of a Labyrinth ~ Dungeon
I drove roughly 1800 miles in the last two days and now I'm coming back to write about a sewer level. Great stuff! Why must you vex me so, Shadow Hearts sewer levels? The last one killed my damn computer! Whatever... Let's out of here so we can get back to the fun stuff instead. Rasputin isn't going to punch himself. He's got Veronica to take care of that.
Continuing our lantern-lit trek, if we follow the square of the dungeon we eventually reach the upper left tip which is the important part.
The part where we can leave the dungeon! There's actually quite a bit of junk to examine in this weird crypt. Directly to the north, we have...
Those are the same characters that are written on the gates.
Oh, so they're characters now and not letters?
Characters and letters can be used interchangeably and are both grammatically correct!
Ohh... Aren't we fancy?
Hey, I know. Maybe it tells us if the gates in the passageway are open or not?
So maybe red lights show the gates that are already open?
Now you would think we would ultimately need to open all the gates and this panel would do something, right? Nope. It's just a useless indicator of how many gates have been unlocked by their corresponding switches. Don't ask me what they were going for here. Or why this hundred-year-old abandoned sewer has functional wiring to LED indicators.
Anyway, across from the switchboard we have a coffin that is some note...
Huh? What does it say?
Entry 1: I lost my home and wealth to political maneuverings. Now I'll end my days rotting away here... All I have left is this locket, keepsake from my mother. It's all that keeps me going...
Entry 2: The others, who've been here longer than I have, asked if I wanted to try and escape with them. I politely refused. Even if I could get out of here, what do I have left in this world...?
Entry 3: I haven't been here very long, but my body is already beginning to rot. It's difficult to write on this wall. The others stole my locket from me before they escaped. I wonder if they managed to reach above-ground...? My keepsake, all that I had left... If only I could have it back to comfort me in death...
Just to the left of that coffin with a bunch of doom journal entries is a central coffin with an ominous description. These two things and that shiny bit of loot on that one skeleton behind a gate early in the dungeon may all be linked. Just a hunch!
Finally, there's another Magic Crest nestled in the very corner next to the only less than noteworthy coffin in the room. Now we can do all the Bright Crimes we could imagine. Finally!
To the north of the coffin room, we have another split path. As indicated on the mini-map, there's a switch to the east. But to the northwest, we find...
No, I don't think so. But there's a faint, eerie presence coming from this door... I think somebody's ghostly regrets are keeping this door sealed shut.
Freaking ghosts. I knew I should have done more of those trials back in the valley!
I don't know exactly, but probably one of the Russian nobles that were locked up here, I'd say.
The regrets of a Russian noble...
There is a lot of that going around lately...
We'd better do something or we won't be able to sneak into the palace.
This is actually the exit of the dungeon. Spoilers: This is one of the rare dungeon crawls in this game that do NOT feature a boss plopped at the end. We're not actually going to ultimately have to punch out a ghost or anything. We just need to go find its keepsake to make it less depressed and we're good. It's like one of those jerk cartoon ghosts from Clock Tower 3 is working part-time here. Don't worry, we're getting a big chapter ending, welcome to the Disc 1 final dungeon heralding boss encounter instead later.
Let's go check out that switch we passed...
That's "A," and it's read "ah."
...That's what I said!
You said it like an unrefined yokel. I said it like a refined noble, thank you very much!
So your family isn't very popular with the common people, ay?
Just pull the lever!
As you'll recall, the A gate was way back towards the start of the dungeon and is essentially just a shortcut so we only have to retread half the dungeon and not the entire thing... like usual. Guess who didn't go north the first time they played and ended up taking the long way around to that gate with the keepsake?
Continuing to the south, there are a couple of branching paths off the main square of the dungeon. There's not much going down any of the spokes other than generic consumables and unimportant loot and a dead end.
But to the very southwestern corner of the dungeon we across yet another gate. With a switch behind it. That there is backtracking in our future.
That's "P", and it's read "ehr". See? The shape is slightly different from the Roman alphabet "P".
<squints at the P> ...I'll just take your word here. You're the authority.
Ah, so you really are learning!
I just really want to get out of here. All this running water is making me have to pee.
As luck would have it, there's a P Lever just a couple corners away. No wonder they locked this place up and threw away the key...
That's "P", and it's read "ehr".
We JUST went over this!
Well, you don't have to get so uppity about it!
I do when you forget lessons from a minute ago!
Tsk! Let's hurry up and move it. Damn! How many of these things are there?
Stop your whining! And get moving!
Technically, we just needed the P switch to throw the final lever and retrieve our prize back at the start of the dungeon. But, we can take a brief detour around the corner to open a shortcut by the P switch to quickly be able to return to the coffin room (that one doesn't have an alphabet lesson at the gate, strangely.) So let's do that. I'll always take a few minutes shaven off a dungeon.
Unlike that P. The more I think about it that was JUST a P like any other "P" and you all just say it funny in Russian.
What are you talking about, "Russian-y"? That's "Б," and it's read "beh."
What do you know? Learn something new every day. Now, then...
One last damn switch to flip and we're done with this sewer. I never want to pull another lever again for at least the rest of this month. "Lever" doesn't even sound like a real word anymore...
Are you making fun of me? ..."Ь" is a "lenition," or "consonant weakening," symbol. It doesn't have a reading.
Well, fancy that.
Again, we have been over this. It wasn't that long ago. How did you ever make it through your education with your attention span being this short?
I was homeschooled until my mom was killed by zombies when I was like eight. That was the end of my schooling...
Oh... I am sorry to hear that... Even if it does explain a lot.
<pulls the lever> Huh? I heard something back by the entrance.
Maybe the gate near the entrance opened? Let's go see.
Sure enough, the other Ъ Gate opened we can FINALLY loot that corpse! Guess those thieves in the crypt-sewer-torture dungeon's escape attempt didn't go so hot. Maybe Jack and Jill and the Agony skeleton army are more fearsome than first impressions made.
Really? Let me see. Hey, you're right. It looks like a necklace.
And thus we have that keepsake from the prisoner who seemingly managed to etch an entire tome onto the side of a coffin (kind of rude) before climbing into another coffin and dying...? Is that how that went down? Whatever! Let's go bust a ghost! Just as soon as we backtrack through mercifully only about a third of the dungeon. I'll take it...
Say, Yuri, let's give him back his locket.
That's kind of a waste, isn't it?
What? I'm doing this whole rescuing Russia operation pro bono. We could probably just beat up this spirit and get some extra Cash from this thing. It looks fancy.
<unimpressed stare> ...Really? Yuri, give him back the locket.
Of course. I was planning to.
Hey, the mood of this place suddenly cleared, don't you think?
Yeah, that ghostly atmosphere is gone.
It's still a sewer filled with skeletons but, you know... Not as BAD of a sewer filled with skeletons. Like a solid 7/10 sewer. Certainly better than the one in Fengtian where the puppy my girlfriend had adopted turned out to be an evil wizard.
You hate to see that.
I bet his sadness was trapped here all this time. I'm sorry for what my ancestors did to you, sir...
And with that, the gate is open and the Winter Palace awaits... Yep, no boss! Not even a completely filler encounter like so many. That dungeon? Not so bad.
Music: Town of Twilight ~ European Town
And hey, remember that storeroom that looked suspiciously like it ought to have a Resident Evil puzzle in it? Turns out it totally did! You just needed to put to rest the spirit of a depressed prisoner from the OTHER side of the room. Tricky!
And as Grand Duke Dmitri takes his place in the historical broom closet as Yuri and the gang fix to take his assassinate role, so too do we save the rest of our adventures for another day. Buckle up, it's about to get wild!
Anastasia Romanov Concept Art - The many expressions of a sinister gremlin child.