The Let's Play Archive

Shin Megami Tensei: Digital Devil Saga

by Dragonatrix

Part 5: Anahata (Part One)

Anahata Entrance

Jinana's willing to work with us now, so she's taken us directly to Anahata, the Solids' territory. Anahata itself is the fourth tantric chakra, and its name means "unhurt" hence why there are medical organisations named after it. The chakra focuses on no longer needing wordly pleasures, honors or humiliations. It's based purely on internal balance.

That is why even the Brutes cannot overtake them.

All you gotta do kill the boss.

Can't quite tell here, and it's still not wholly apparent in the video, but they are looking at Mick talking to one of the watchmen.

He never set foot on the battlefield.
That's no good. What do we do?
The Maribel will create a diversion.



Anahata itself follows the usual pattern of "safe area in front of the dungeon to talk to our party."

The one thing that makes it a bit different is that there isn't a singular transition to get into the Citadel. We have to climb that ladder in the background first.

This puts us on the wall, which still counts as the outside area. We can also see Mick's sweet cannons. Little wonder he was able to fend off even the top tier tribes without much hassle.

But there's nothing else out here of note. Let's dive into the Citadel proper.

Man's Tomb

They can't surround us, or attack us from behind. Defend the main gate.
Roger. Let's go!
They never learn, do they?

Seems like our distraction was a rousing success, and we can blitz through this place after all.

Since we climbed in to get easy access, we'll be starting at the top and working our way down for once.

Of course, this being a giant citadel and all there's plenty of side rooms to explore. We'll hit up all of the important ones, naturally.

The first couple we come across are mini-barracks areas. More important is the loot here.

Dark Veils are pretty neat items. They try to inflict Death on every enemy.

They don't have a particularly great proc-rate, but they're servicable.

Room immediately next door contains two more attack items. Shock Bombs and Blasts deal middling elemental damage. Shock Bombs are, uh, electricity and Blasts are force. Better than the ones we can straight up buy from the Vendors at least.

Little bit further ahead on the main path, and there's a small area with four rooms that contain a variety of stuff. The door to continue is, uh, directly on the main path so they're wholly optional.

Wind and Bolt Walls are just their respective Void Spells but in an item form. Nullifies Force and Electric damage. Mouldy Rolls are another of those healing items with a negative ailment inducing side-effect.

There's also a couple Dis-Stuns, Dis-Mutes and Chakra Drops in other rooms. Nothing particularly stellar but it's still useful.

Door at the end of the corridor somewhat spoils that, no, the Maribel's diversion was not wholly perfect. They probably expected them to attack through more than just the front doors so they'd have naturally left guards posted throughout the citadel.

Like these chumps.

Who cares? Food is food. Let's get rid of them.

Hunting ~ Compulsion

No video for these guys, because they're just regular generic Archangels. They're completely identical to the ones we'll fight as random encounters afterwards.

They resist physicals so spellslinging it is, then.

They can kind of try to nerf that by inflicting Mute with this attack, but it's not really a big deal.

This is probably their biggest threat if only because it hits the entire party.

Damage is also pretty respectable for a random chump demon. And this is after a couple Tarundas too.

Naturally, they also have Expel spells. Thankfully these are not quite as threatening as you might expect.

In fact, most Expel spells actively cannot kill you. They merely deal proportional damage based on your current HP. This is mildly annoying but it's just that. An annoyance.

Anyway, we hit them and they die. They're not really a challenging fight or anything.

Man's Tomb

Now that we've had our first fight here, we'll be getting random encounters after this point. Archangels ARE on the higher end of possible fights right now, but that's not saying much really.

Anyway, there's two doors here. Southwest is progress, so we'll spin around to the southeast first and...

Immediately run into a fight with two Bicorns. Who got lucky as fuck, jeez. Shocking Serph just means if they opted to hit him, much like with Freeze he would take a guaranteed crit. Unlike with Freeze, his resistances are still intact.

And Heat got Panic'd too. Swell.

The best revenge is an instant crit that makes the enemy scared of us. Lunch has been well and truly served at this point.

Oh, we can't poke Bicorns weakness yet. We'll do it soon enough though.

Room just has a cell in it. A new one that sells for more than the previous few, but it's still just a cell.

Nothing else back here, so let's head further onwards.

...By immediately proceeding to ignore onwards progress. The stairs to the east are progress. Path to the south is where we're heading first.

Badb Cathas pop up and have a mildly inconvenient weakness.

Because its fire. No one has Zan yet, so I can't combo-Maragi and Heat is the only one with Agi at that.

Oh, and did I mention before that spells can miss? Because spells can miss.

It normally doesn't happen often (barring buffs/debuffs throwing it off of course) but it totally can. And it's even more annoying than a physical skill missing.

There's a free Revival Gem on this path. I am glad, because this might come in handy later.

There's also a... yellow... wall here. Huh. I remembered this one being blue. Guess I got 'em mixed up.

Ah well, on the way back to where we want to be Serph gained another level and finally proc'd the last random level up bonus. There's a chance of a stat going up. Whether this is better or worse than the random full heal depends on your situation at the time, really.

'Nother new demon here. Ikusas are actually mildly annoying but they're also quite nice to run across. Not because of the Matera.

No, because they can call for Reinforcements on their turns.

This makes another Ikusa spawn in. If this sounds abusable for free EXP, you are right but it's not wholly reliable. There's easier things to grind off of anyway.

Doubling back and heading down the stairs we skipped and... here's the blue wall. Right around the corner from the yellow one.

...I'm sure you can see how that would be an easy mistake to make.

Surprisingly, this wall is probably the least lucrative one yet. It's just blocking two doors. The door to our right contains absolutely nothing.

The door on the left just had a Magic Noise in it. That's it.

At some point around now, Serph mastered his current mantra and gave him access to this beauty. Iron Stomach is like one of the best passive abilities in the game without exception, because it grants immunity to stomachaces.

AP Divide also implicitly grants immunity to stomachaches to everyone else. Because you slap 'em both on one person, they eat everything and everyone else reaps the benefits too. It's great!

Downside? Holy Beast costs 50,000 macca.

Not getting that one for a while then.

Back on the main path again, and we've come to yet another scenario where there are two doors to choose between. Door on our right leads onwards.

Door on the left leads nowhere. Yet. It's pretty transparently a backtracking convenience above all else, then.

Around about now, we start running into a couple new things again. This time it's Apis.

They're weak to Earth spells. This makes them quite easy to deal with.

They cast mid-level Fire spells. This would be a problem except for one thing...

Their magic stat sucks. 34 damage on a weakness? C'mon, son. Try harder.

The still rather linar path ends up bringing us face-to-face with this guy.

We can't avoid running onto the square in front of him.

This exists solely to show us that red eyed statues are trapped and drop us into Mick's creepy basement.

They add something to the charm of the impregnable citadel, don't you think? Not that it matters. Let's keep moving.

So, Mick's weird dungeon-y basement area (that isn't actually in his basement) is kinda big but also mostly optional. If we want to just leave, we can follow the main path and do so basically immediately.

Bugger that, there's some things to pick up down here. And lots of rooms with commotions in them.

The commotions are caused by Gyu-Kis unable to get out. These ones are both easier and harder than the one we fought at Manipura.

They don't always do a Power Charge and then a Body Rush. They also don't always do a Power Charge.

But they can do a Power Charge and then a Mad Rush. Mad Rush hits "randomly" which means the enemy will always hit you a lot more than you hit them with it.

...Like so. And yes, Argilla dropped from near full health to dead. Gyu-Kis don't fuck around.

Well, sometimes. They don't hit that hard without Power Charge so it's mostly a non-issue.

We can also eat these ones. And they are super-delicious and worth it.

Each room with one in also has an item of some kind in there too. That also makes them worth it.

Medical Kits are like Brave Rations but instead of healing one person for 150HP, they heal the entire party for 150HP. Could come in handy.

Oh, sometimes while running around down here this happens. It doesn't really actually do much of anything. Just a short fade to black and then you're facing another direction. Mildly inconvenient, but not really an issue.

Also, the basement is where Mick keeps his catgirls. Nekomatas have a weakness we normally can't exploit.

It's Electricity. We throw Shock Bombs at them. These things are actually kind of annoying to fight normally.

Because of this. They have like two different ways of inflicting Charm. It kinda sucks! Charm is
the confusion ailment. Panic is random-confusion. Charm is straight up attacking your allies and healing your enemies. Quite annoying.

Hunting ~ Suprise Raid

Speaking of annoying, Ambushes in this game are worse than in most since they force you to start in Human form rather than let you switch to it later. We've already sort of seen this with the Macha fight in Manipura though; it has its advantages (no one is weak to anything in this form for instance), but its share of disadvantages too (no resistances, weaker attacks, have to waste a turn transforming).

Oh, and sometimes random fights can get reinforcements too. It's wholly random here as well, but it doesn't really make things any harder. At least not at this stage.

Man's Tomb

It's a bit late now, but once we're close to the exit of the basement we can find a couple members of the Maribel. They've each got a hint for us about the dungeon itself, but this one is redundant. We were railroaded to walk in front of a red-eyed statue which in itself taught us not to do that... for the purpose of then being actively told not to do that. So close.

Round the corner, there's also this guy. This is a hint for an actual sort-of puzzle we'll see later. Door past him actually leads to an optional side area.

With nothing in it.

So we'll spin around and head through a door that leads onwards instead. The ladder is right there once we do so, which is our ticket out of here, but there's an entire area up here we haven't explored yet...

There's a couple more items through here. Again, each one of these is guarded by a Gyu-Ki.

This one sells for a decent chunk regardless. At Min noise, it outdoes the Error Cell at Max noise. Pretty great.

Not much else up here, though. Another side area to the south-east with nothing in it.

And this door at the northern most point of this circular area. There is also nothing past it.


So we spin around, climb the ladder and come to an area with two red-eyed statues facing one another. Uh, we'll deal with this later.

Thankfully there's a side door right next to them.

This leads to our first Large Karma Terminal (at last!). We'll stop here for now, but first...

Serph and Argilla gain access to the Ancient God mantra. This one's pretty great, not for itself (which is just HP and MP Thief; sound useful but very situational) but what it lets you get later. It costs 15,000 macca so we'll skip it for now though.


Here's some weaknesses we never exploited. Archangels are weak to instant death spells. So are Apises are that matter.

Bicorns are weak to Ailments. Like all ailments. MP Thief is handy for this since it deals Mute damage which does count as an ailment.

Just putting this one to sleep, though. I do that quite a fair bit, since it raises your Crit rate (not guaranteed to happen, despite what you might think) as well as normally makes them skip their turns. In a nice change of pace hitting a sleeping enemy with a physical does not automatically wake them up; it has a chance to, but it's not something that happens all the time.

Lots of actual new skills this time around, so we'll start to do this now. Feed Frenzy and Devil Feast are new Hunt skills; Feed Frenzy hits every enemy unit rather than just one. Devil Feast hits just one enemy but has a small chance of proccing instant death in lieu of dealing damage... unless they're frightened; it always works then. Ingest Mana only works on a successful hunt but it gives Serph 10% of his MP back for every enemy devoured. Venom Fang, Death Spray and Vile Blade are all just new physical skills. Death Spray hits one enemy a bunch and can inflict Curse; mostly use it for the Bunch Of Hits aspect though. Mudo is straight up instant death if it procs without any gimmicks attached. Quick Escape makes it easier to run from fights; it also stacks with itself so stick it on everyone and you're virtually guaranteed to flee from a fight. It has its uses if you're running low on resources or something. Dream Haze and Foul Breath inflict Sleep and Poison on enemies. Void Charm/Panic are like the Void element spells but for the listed ailment instead.

Taunt is the best of this lot, though (Ingest Mana being second). Taunt is
the boss killing skill for quite a while. It reduces their defence - to both physical attacks/skills AND spells - by 2 stages but in return boosts their attack by 2 as well. If only we had ways to counter that second bit...