Part 60: Bonus Update: The Alternate PathsBonus Update: The Alternate Paths
Let's choose to rule.
: Congratulations, Lord Azure, now we can finally begin to rebuild after this long, terrible war.
: Well, at least now there's one less enemy threatening City-State soil.
: But we still don't have true peace in these lands. Lord Azure, there is something we wish to ask of you. Lord Azure, there's still Harmonia to the north of here and so we can't completely relax. Furthermore, because there was no trust between us, Luca Blight was able to divide the City-State. We need a single, unified country. One that can stand together against its enemies. Lord Azure, we want you to create a new country here, Azure Country, and we want you to lead it.
: If it means a stronger nation, able to defend itself, we have no objections either.
: The Knightdom of Matilda is no more, but we will follow your orders in this matter, Lord Azure.
: I feel the same way as Miklotov.
: Most of the strength of Muse was stolen by Luca Blight, but we still haven't lost our pride as the center of the State. As acting mayor of Muse, I also intend to follow the will of Lord Azure.
: Lord Azure... we thank you.
: We swear to serve Lord Azure with pride and fidelity!!
Suikoden 2 Tunes We Will Always Be (Part 1)
We get a whole new set of scenes with people in the army.
Azure returns to Muse to wait for Jowy.
This is your hint that you need to return to Tenzan Pass, where it all began, to find Jowy. But... now that we know that, why don't we revisit him?
The alternate path leads to a long wooden bridge. I'm just showing off that you can go another way in Tenzan Pass. It's the alternate path that cuts through to the L'Renouille area.
This time, we're going to kill Jowy.
: Azure... hold up your right hand.
: It may seem like all is lost, but we'll always have memories... forgive me, Azure... I've sent so many men to their deaths... no one knows the pain of that more than I do. But, just as I thought, you had no choice... you had to defeat me. A glorious hero defeats an evil king... the people will all talk and sing of your heroic rise to fame and forget the horrors and the sins of war... the defeated soldiers too will feel comforted by the fact that they were defeated by a hero and deceived by an evil king...
: Hold on dearly to this peace... that we fought so long for. The rune... it well lend you its power, I'm sure of it... farewell... my friend... Azure...
Afterward, Azure still returns to rule.
And continues to wait for Jowy...
The ending graphic is in sepia-tone, like the original intro at the beginning of the game. Their friendship is now just a fading memory, followed by pained reminiscence.
Let's talk about how I feel on these endings:
I don't like the best ending, primarily because it requires the deus ex machina of the Runes uniting and fulfilling destiny and the typical happy ending. The same reason I love the bad ending and hate the best ending is that one is grounded, mostly, in the reality of war; the other, unfortunately, requires the Runes to join and everything's happy.
To me, the ending where you kill Jowy is the second-best, primarily because it breaks the cycle of the Runes being at war, and because it's the only time you can help Jowy pay for his sins. It breaks the trope of the Bright Shield Rune user being all infallible, all good. The entire game, people are sympathizing and romanticizing Jowy's ambitions despite the terrible things he's done. This is the other time, much like the bad ending, where you can tell destiny to fuck off. It's also, I believe, the most realistic in terms of war; it's so very unlikely that people with loved ones involved in war are likely to reunite with them, especially in such a large-scale war as the Dunan Unification War was.
Another thing that really bugs me is that the scene where Huan invites Shu into the room occurs no matter what ending you go for, as long as you get all 108 Stars pre-Matilda, so why does Nanami die anyway? I don't think the designers developed the To Rule ending and the Kill Jowy ending with that particular scene in mind.
But I'm also a fan of depressing endings, particularly in emotional games such as these. That's all to be shown from my end of the LP, so look forward to the next Suikodens. III and V will be done by TWD, and we're unsure as to who will do IV and Tactics at this point. For now, though, TWD's glitch central II LP continues.