Part 21: Lord of the State ArmyThis is the beginning of a seriously fun and plot-overloaded stretch of the game, beginning with our first legitimate battle against Highland.
Viktor's a little hesistant to trust him due to the fact that he was banished as a strategist initially.
: Hey, you! Big guy! Are you Viktor?
: Yeah... that's me.
: Listen up. Follow my orders and do as I say and we can defeat the Highland Army. Don't believe in me and you'll be the loser. If you want to win, don't question me again. If you can't do that, I'll consider you an obstacle that needs to be removed.
Yeah, the levels are approaching critical mass here
so am I.
: Hey, blue-boy. You're Flik, right? How many soldiers do we have?
: Careful what you call me... if you add up the former Muse and South Window soldiers, plus the women, children, and elderly volunteers, we have about 2,000 soldiers. That and this rickety old castle. The Highland Army, on the other hand, has increased its size to 20,000 soldiers with the addition of South Window's troops.
This was when Tinto and South Window were fighting, by the way. Much like Kalekka, the castle in North Window was the site of a battle long ago.
: They may be 20,000 strong, but they'll have to leave soldiers to man the garrisons as they go. In reality, they only have 10,000 soldiers to move as they please. Furthermore, one-third of them are former South Window soldiers. Under the right conditions, we might be able to get them to join our side. If we could do that, we'd have a force of 5,000 compared to their 7,000. We have a good chance to win,
: Yes, sir!
: Infiltrate the Highland Army and spread the rumor that the South Window soldiers will be executed when the war is over.
: What then? No reinforcements are coming, and I don't think Freed's rumor alone will get the South Windowers to change sides.
: The enemy will undoubtedly try to surround the castle.We'll have a small unit work its way around the enemy and attack Solon Jhee's unit from the rear. If we attack their general, the troops will be shaken. We would be able to get them to change sides.
: The Highland Army has only been in land battles. They have no experience on water. For Solon Jhee, water is just an obstacle. But we're going to use the lake to our advantage. We should be able to borrow some ships from the neighboring village.
: No, I'm going to leave that role for someone else.
Figures. Again, we can't weasel our way out of this.
: Apple, I want you to handpick 300 soldiers from our army of 2,000. That will be Azure's unit.
From now until forever, Apple no longer handles strategy. She is, instead, used in designating who goes in what unit. It's very useful but also makes her little more than a gameplay mechanic.
: Why has this happened? Why do you have to do everything? I'm not sure I trust this Shu. But I guess we have no choice but to fight now. It's okay. I'll protect you. Let's go... it's almost time... to fight again...
The excessive use of ellipses makes me think everyone in this game has asthma attacks.
Time to go to war, again.
Suikoden 2 Tunes Battlefield Without Light ~ War Theme #2 (must listen, pretty epic)
This war theme plays from now through the rest of the game, it also doesn't glitch out.
: But our forces are spread too thin, our flanks are exposed...
: Exposed? The only thing our flanks are exposed to are the open fields of South Window! Don't worry, just get them!!
Once again, things are automated for a while.
In turn 2, we head in to attack their flank.
Also, team Freedy is just up here, in perfect range to turn troops around and fuck over Highland.
Team Dinosaur is stuck with Tuta in the third slot which isn't so bad, because Tuta gives you 3 more Repair Self uses. Without Jowy, though, we no longer have passive Critical.
Our little State Army dudes actually did something useful and took out some of Culgan's troops.
First assault didn't quite work.
It sufficiently scares Solon Jhee, though. The other soldiers start to freak out now that we've surrounded them.
You don't even have to damage Solon Jhee, all you need to do is attack him to get the South Window soldiers to turn.
Freedy's rallying calls work, and the soldiers defect.
Culgan gets taken out by the Former State soldiers and Freedy.
A 6/8 unit going up against a 9/10 unit... this is getting dull.
After a few turns, Solon Jhee and the rest of the army retreat.
This was the day Azure became a hero.
(after Flik commented on how much of a hero he's become)
: Everyone's talking about you. They're calling you the 'herald of victory'.
: We've managed to win this battle. But we've already lost Lady Anabelle and Muse has fallen under control of Highland. The State is in shambles and the survivors are in danger of being destroyed one at a time. Furthermore, sooner or later Luca Blight's main unit, the White Wolf Guard, will attack us here in North Window. In our present condition, we wouldn't be able to defend against such an attack. We need to gather more power here.
Basically, we are the 'leader who will bring everyone together', yadda yadda yadda
You and your 15 year old, anorexic frame and your tonfas and your not-a-True-Rune. YOU must be the leader of this rebellious army.
: In your hand, you possess the same Bright Shield Rune that Genkaku did. You are Lord Azure, who defeated General Solon Jhee of Highland. Many people look to you for hope. But more than all that, I've seen the brilliance in you. The kind of brilliance that this age needs. You must lead the State Army.
: Wait a minute, Azure. Are you sure? I... I think you should give this more thought.
>>> But Luca Blight...
>>> That 'power'...
: Something Anabelle didn't have the time to tell him...
He invites the two of them to the tavern later, so we can learn the truth.
The one thing that Nanami does right in this game is question why Azure should do this. There's not a whole lot of reasons for him to take on all this responsibility aside from 'it's destined'. And really, is that enough to lead an army?
: But was it about 30 years ago? Highland and the State fought a great war against each other.
Suikoden 2 Tunes An Old Story (must listen)
: Anabelle's father, Mayor Darell of Muse, led the State, and the famous general, Han Cunningham, against the Highland Army.
: Darell was an amateur when it came to war and before long he had lost half of Muse and the Matilda domain. That's when a hero appeared... your adopted father, Genkaku. Genkaku got command of a unit and raided Highland's supply tent. This slowed Highland long enough for the State to recover.
: Sometimes they would leisurely drink together in the middle of both camps. And doing so, they both realized what a stupid and pointless war it was. And so Genkaku and Han worked together to create a peace treaty. The citizens of both countries were overjoyed. All except for one man, the Mayor of Muse City...
: And so negotiations broke down, and the war started anew. That's when the King of Highland, Agares Blight, made a suggestion. The war should be decided by a 'duel between both champions'. Darell agreed to the idea, as did Han and Genkaku who only wished the war would finally come to an end.
: This signalled that each champion was fighting as representative of their own country.
: Time passed, and the people got angry that the contest was spoiled. They blamed Genkaku.
: That's how your hometown of Kyaro came to be Highland territory.
: Genkaku was called 'traitor' and ordered into exile by Lord Darell. He left without ever revealing his true reason for not fighting. Many years passed, Darell left his job as mayor, and finally it was learned why Genkaku never wanted to fight.
: Genkaku was ruined whether he won or lost. If he lost, fine. If he won, Darell was planning to expel him for his 'evil crime'. Genkaku detected the poison and couldn't bring himself to swing his sword.
: As for what happened after that... well, you know better than I do.
We'll cut this update with Nanami asleep at a table in a bar.