Part 12: The Metaphorical Fan Gets Dirtied.Long update today! Hang in there!
Our new Krill Boots allow us to run faster than before! But that's not the main draw to them.
Jump off a ledge and hit B and you'll spin in the air...
And slam down onto the ground!
Do it on these red panels and the pillars nearby will drop. Progress!
Okay, our goal is to get to the yellow square up in the top corner.
This upper cave is where we need to go.
Lots of worms hiding underground in here! Thankfully, running is always an option.
Hey there crate.
Since we're in the dark green area on the map, we're in a different set of random battles now. These orange crosses aren't much different from the blue ones, but they move a bit faster and take a few more shots to kill.
Now we can stomp any panels we passed the first time we came through here.
And because of that, inside this cave we find the Impact Data, Shield. It makes you invulnerable every 30 impacts. I'll be utilizing this later this update since it's pretty decent if you're playing defensively.
This bar thing come at you from a distance and take a lot of shots to kill.
Drops a lot of EXP though! I even got a level up as I was exploding!
Now we can enter this part of the settlement.
This place is really just a fancy looking cave because nothing happens in here. In fact it's worse than a cave. At least those have enemies.
There we go!
: use it to free Scarlet from those idiots.
The Black box actually shows up in the inventory.
Yes, that's right, 99 enemies to kill before the stage ends. And I was in the mobile launcher. I actually didn't get hit once, so it didn't even launch its ship, but it was a long fight. Pretty sure I leveled up during it too.
Instead of going directly back, I decided to take to long way and get things we couldn't get before. This cave has the Impact Data, Vertical Spray. It's like Fork in that the bullets fly in two directions, but Fork is more useful since they fly forwards too.
This is one of the cooler minibosses in the game. Its blocks move around to form different shapes and it fires patterns of bullets to match the shapes.
It's not that hard to beat since it's weak everywhere but its bullets can hit for a lot of damage if you get hit by a bunch of them at once. Drops about 2800 EXP.
Speaking of minibosses, there is a really neat one that acts more like a puzzle that I wanted to show off but i could not get the game to let me fight him, even after grinding battles with the sole intent of fighting it. Eventually I game up and reloaded my save since I didn't want to be 5 or 6 levels over where I was previously. Maybe we'll find it next time we're on the planet.
More cave Gun Data. This one is the Cannon Data, Max Spread Cannon. It fires in all 8 directions at once. Sounds great but it's rate of fire is significantly lowered to not be completely broken. I'll stick with what I have.
Another miniboss, it fires slow moving ice daggers. Pretty useless as minibosses go, this one drops about 800 EXP.
Back at the Starbase:
*You turned over the BLACK BOX.*
: As I mentioned earlier, the girl Scarlet may be helpful on this.
: Give it a rest, Recker!
*Recker turns to face Psyme*
: Psyme... What happened to your face?
: Recker, you've been a good soldier. but this obsession with the Earth girl is getting you into trouble that you don't need. Psyme has learned this lesson the hard way.
: You did this to her because I asked her to watch Keys?
: I...I deserved it. I was insubordinate.
: So this is how you run your starbase? Treating people like animals?
: That's all you are, Earthman! Don't forget your place in my presence!
*An alarm suddenly goes off and the room flashes red.*
: A hostile organism is inside the ship! It's the virus!
: The virus was never fully developed. It must be the byproduct strain.
: How did it get here? Could one of us have been a carrier?
Gee I bet there's no way it could have been on the black box or anything.
: It must have been carried by one of the Earthlings!
: Don't jump to conclusions! I'll check it out! You both wait here.
The virus can only be found by using the Scanning Tool, then destroyed with the Pistol or Krill Puck. Once you kill all five viruses Tierney contacts you.
: Roger that! Oh, I forgot it's a one way signal. I'll have to risk the COMM ROOM again.
: All right Commander. I've got details, but this time I want answers.
: I called you, but fair enough.
: When you sent me here, how many planets did you know were synchronized?
I STILL cannot spell synchronized right the first time, and I doubt I will be able to by the time the game is finished.
: Allied Earth Federation knew about two of them. A third was discovered shortly after, but the report never reached us. It's probably still documented at the lab.
: I've removed all critical intel from that lab, sir, so unless I'm mistaken I'm the only one with the coordinates for the fourth planet.
: What do you want?
: Tell me how many planets there are.
: Blackmail, Recker? Really... I suppose I've no choice but to compromise Earth security. Is that what you want?
: I'm waiting.
I can't think of a smiley good enough to explain what runs through my head when I think of Recker responding so deadpan like that to such a serious question. A mix between and I guess.
: There are six planets, all synchronized. We have three of them ID'd. What was the status of the laboratory?
: All dead but for one survivor. Scarlet Keys.
: The virus she was creating is critical to our success. Is it safe?
: As long as she is. They never completed a working version. It's still in her head.
: Until we have the ID of all six planets, Miss Keys' safety is priority one. Now transmit the coordinates of the fourth planet.
: I don't have them.
: What?! But you said-
Now I have a mental image of Tierney's hairpiece flying off in shock.
: I have the black box. It will need to be analyzed before I can identify the next planet.
: Now if you're through making ridiculous demands, I have an urgent matter that concerns us both. An attack on your Starbase is imminent.
: What? Why didn't you say so?!
: The Earth armada is here to recover the virus and the black box.
: Good. Then we can end all this craziness.
: You have to repel the attack.
: What?! Attack the Earth fleet? Why?!
: We need the Krill to lead us to the last two planets! If Earth takes the black box now, we're back to square one! The only future for humanity is either to use the virus to destroy the Krill homeworld, or find the Krill weapon before the do. And for that we need you, Miss Keys, and the black box intact. Attacking our own fleet is in Earth's best interest! you must use every resource at your disposal!
: How can you say that?! Call them off!!
: We're operating in the dark! I don't have that kind of authority!
: I'm done killing Earth's soldiers, sir!
: Billions more will die if you stand there and do nothing!! You must attack!! Attack now, or their blood will be on your hands!
: At least let me transfer Scarlet! DON'T MAKE ME DO THIS!! TIERNEY?! TALK TO ME!!
: surprise waiting for them!
: What kind of surprise?
: We recovered a downed ship in last month's attack on your homeworld. it's fully restored, fitted with Krill weapons. This is your chance to shine, boy. As of this moment, you're a double agent! Fly into the fleet, get inside their lines, and wipe them out!
: But... Scarlet...
: No arguing! They are right on top of us!
: No until you let her go.
: Do this and the Earth girl is yours! GO!!
Now that wasn't so hard, was it?
: Psyme! I can't do this!!
: I know you still care about your people! but these pilots will kill all of us! You've got to defend this station!
: I can't betray them!!
: Look! See this ship? It's one of Sigma's, better than new!
Wait what really aaaaaaa my ship!
: You said you'd get him for me! Did you mean what you said?
: Sigma will be leading the attack, I just know it! Please, Recker! *Psyme moves closer to Recker* When you come back we'll make things right! We can start over together! Promise me!
: I... I will! But not for revenge... and not because of someone's orders! I won't let you go alone! I'll do it for you.
: We're out of time, GO!!
Before I start the boss mission, let me direct your attention to the Weapon Select. I played the mission before gathering pictures for the update and found that my current configuration was ill-equipped for the mission, so I went back after dying to the boss and changed my weapon. For this mission I'll be using the Front/Back Cannon so I can hit in front and behind, Heavy Shot like normal, and Shield to soak up bullets from Earth fighters. Using Front/Back removes my large spread but it's pretty necessary against the boss since it likes to fly around a lot. Cross Cannon might have worked well here too, but has a lower rate of fire than Front/Back.
Now that my weapon explanation is out of the way, you can watch how I fare in the mission:
VIDEO: Chapter 3 Boss Mission
My ship... It's good to be back...
The fight is actually deep out in space with the Ice Planet in the background, which I find pretty neat. The biggest threats here are the Earth fighters. They have lots of shielding and are pretty powerful. They also fly away towards you if you don't kill them fast enough. Each is worth 500 EXP so it's worth it to try and defeat them.
Twin Nodes would work well here so that you don't have to be on the same horizontal plane to fire at them, but then you don't have the ability to fire backwards, something useful for not only the boss, but the rest of the stage too.
This ship (the left one) tries to attack you from behind. This is one of the reasons I chose Front/Back Cannon.
In the video you'll undoubtedly see that for a period, my bullets are getting continuously fired with no stop. I turned on the autofire in VBA to try and make things easier but I figured it wasn't helping enough to warrant the constant firing sound effect the whole video.
I really like the ship graphics here.
I got really careless here and ended up taking so much damage I had literally a pixel left on my health bar. I had thought my Shield was activated but it turned out it wasn't.
Thankfully, the next EXP drop was enough to level me up back to full health... Talk about lucky.
As a former Rom Hacker, I can't help but think these graphics would make a great rip for use in something, probably Super Mario World. They're just that good in my eyes.
Eventually we come to the end of the fleet and go out into open space. A mech reminiscent of the ones in Star Fox 64's Sector Y shows up and salutes you, before proceeding to try and destroy you.
As you can see, it likes to fly around the screen. This is the primary reason I equipped Front/Back. If I hadn't, I would only be able to hit him when he's in front of me, making an already long fight even longer.
The reason the fight is so long is because of this purple shield he has. If he pulls it up and you hit him with bullets during this time...
He will race over to you and punch your ship. This attack is unavoidable so you have to be careful that you don't shoot his shield.
This leads to a back and forth battle where you fire off a couple shots at a time to ward off the possibility of getting hit by his punch attack. Of course, this makes the battle quite long.
Eventually he explodes and falls off the screen while saluting you. At least he's polite. The boss drops 3750 EXP. Kind of sucks as an amount considering how hard he is in comparison to Chapter 2's boss and the fact I got 2 levelups from that fight.
: Wha... That's Ek... Dead!
We return to the Starbase to find Ek dead on the ground. What happened here?
: Calm down, Recker. It'll pass...
: I just destroyed the last line of defense for my people!
: You are safe here.
: Ek is dead. I found his body in the launch bay.
: Psyme, what are you doing?
: That attack was too close! I'm through taking orders from you imbeciles! Tell me everything you got from that black box! Do it now or you're history!
: Don't do anything crazy! What are you turning on me for?
: It's the High Command that's turned on all of us! We're doing their dirty work and they're slaughtering us left and right! For the last time, what is on that black box?!
: Nothing! It was empty! Just these Sand Planet coordinates, I swear!
: That's all we need. Let's go!
*Scarlet turns to face Recker*
: Hold on! I have to tell you something first... I took a tissue sample from Ek. It was nothing like the tissue we were given to base our virus on. Allied Earth Federation lied to us.
*Recker and Psyme turn to face Scarlet*
: So the virus was never intended to destroy the Krill?
: No. But it destroyed the tissue sample we were given. We just don't know what the sample was!
: You'd better come with us.
: Thanks Psyme. And thanks for saving me from this maniac.
: The Krill Overlord will not allow this!
: What about him?
: Leave him! It's the only way to guarantee a Starbase will be waiting for us.
: We'd better get to the launch bay fast.
To the Sand Planet we go.
Join me next time as we get sand in our eyes.
Current Weapon Data:
: 4 - Front/Back Cannon. Fires shots ahead and behind.
: 3 - Heavy Shot. A large projectile with a large hit area.
: 13 - Shield. On the 30th impact, the ship becomes invincible for a brief time.