Part 10: Large Hostile Crustacean
...but of course a beach house isn't a possibility even if the music would go well with one. I've decided to show this game off and by gum I will show it off.
I also agree with that suggestion.
...NEED FOOD... NOW...
I could very easily have made a Gauntlet joke here, but I feel I showed remarkable restraint in this case.
So, Lazlo... what shall we do now?
Paula has caught on to the fact that Lazlo is still the most competent person on the island (this is true at any time Lazlo is standing on an island).
I'll be in charge of collecting food.
If he comes up with a way to make cheese out here, I will be very impressed! Horrified, but impressed.
We'll be doing menial chores for the next few days. Coincidentally, there are three different tasks and we'll be here for three days, enough time for everyone to try their hand at everything. Except Chiepoo but he barely has hands.
...Okay. What shall we do about the rest?
Jewel, please make some rope.
The reason I'm putting Jewel on rope duty and...
Very well... I shall collect coconuts.
...Paula on coconut duty is the fact that getting wood is the worst task (as in, it's the only one that involves any kind of effort) and I'd rather have it over with as soon as possible.
First, though, let's pay a visit to this fucking cave. It is about eight times as long as it would need to be, and I will be coming back here several times, because fuck me.
Oh, and here's a fun fact. The moment we decided we want off the island? It's suddenly full of enemies.
Normally in Suikoden games, once your level is sufficiently higher than the enemies', the escape command changes to "let go", which is the same except it never fails. Here, however? Despite being 10+ levels higher than I'm expected to be when I get here, I still can't let these enemies go. That's right: all that time spent grinding, and it did fuck all. It didn't even make me strong enough to reliably one-shot everything I run across here!
This is another one of those things that make Suikoden IV Not A Good Game: there are far too many enemies in far too many places, and it's far too annoying to get rid of them.
Still, I eventually reach the innermost part of the cave, and suddenly mermaid!
She ran away.
She did leave this, however!
Luck is... one of those weird things. It's involved in calculating critical hits, and supposedly has some effect on, well, luck-based minigames as well. Anyway, the ring is an accessory - the first one we've found - and it goes on Lazlo because he's the only one in the party. It boosts luck by 15 points (he has a base of 35 at this point, so a significant boost) and defence by 3. Pretty nice.
The water in the background there looks kind of radioactive, but if you examine it, you'll find that it actually acts as a free inn. Handy! I suppose.
Next up, I'll be grabbing Chiepoo, because having him makes the upcoming part go away slightly faster and I am all about making things go away faster.
It's a nice looking area, don't get me wrong, but it's full of enemies.
The shiny thing a bit above and to the left of Lazlo's head indicates a place where he can get wood. You don't actually chop down trees; just examine the ones with glowy things.
There is also a hill on the other side of the forest, but it's just a big open space. There was a chest up there with a necklace (read: collar) which is pretty decent headgear for Chiepoo, but I already got that on my first visit and there's nothing else left.
After gathering your chosen resource, you can pick up your other party members as well, and then it's time to end the day.
Let's just hurry and get off this island already.
I have no reason to believe that you are lying.
That's right. We both talked it over and decided that we'll prove your innocence, no matter what it takes. We've got lots of work ahead of us.
Indeed, we do...
Oh, you can thank us later... Let's just get some sleep for tomorrow.
Looks like Chiepoo is our food expert.
So, Lazlo, how shall we proceed?
Same procedure as every year, James! Except not the same, because this time I'm asking Paula to handle the shitty task.
What about the rest of it?
I'll make rope.
Sure thing. I'll go get some coconuts now.
Making rope is as easy as walking along the beach once and picking up all these things lying scattered about (magically appearing once you've selected rope-making as your task).
Chiepoo acts as...
...the island's vending machine. His "rare finds" will sometimes contain seashells, which is kind of neat.
Once more into the caves. Fuck bats.
The mermaid is waiting by the lake.
...You can have this.
...and then she disappeared back into the lake again.
This time, she left us this. I'll take it!
Turtle! If you get too close, it will pull back into its shell, and continue moving once you back off. It's a really neat detail.
Gather items, gather party, venture forth, we know the deal already.
Gaien and Kooluk do not get along. It should come as no surprise... to see the worst become of that...
All the characters have something to say around the fire. If it weren't for all the annoying ass encounters, this would be a really great part of the game.
If that's true... It could be bad news for everyone...
Jewel, are you worried about Snowe?
Wh-Why are you bringing him up now?
If I offended you, I apologize.
N-No... You don't have to apologize.
Ooh, I think someone has feelings. Why Snowe of all people, though? I'm just saying, I think you could do better.
Like... I'm pretty sure Chiepoo is single, for instance.
Yeah, we know. Well, Lazlo, what should we do?
Day three, and there is only one thing Lazlo hasn't done yet.
Jewel, please cut down trees.
What shall we do with the rest?
Paula, please make some rope.
I understand. In that case... Lazlo, you are in charge of gathering coconuts.
This is the last area on the island, just at the end of the beach. All you need to do is walk over these round-ish green things and pick them up.
The mermaid is waiting again.
I will do none of that.
I feel I can trust you.
...but not enough to stay around and chat.
And, in the same spot as last time, this. Each character can wear three accessories and now Lazlo is all loaded up.
Gather party, etc etc.
I presume those are inedible. The shells on those creatures seem fairly tough.
Yeah, which is why I'm asking... If they're just hard on the outside, they might be soft on the inside.
Don't they look like... they won't have much in them? I'm fine with the fish...
Hmm... Okay. You're probably right... Darn...
Yes, same conversation as when you choose to stay, except with the normal portraits. If you really want to listen to it, it's in here towards the end.
But this time, we are not staying! (You should watch this.)
It is amazing what one can accomplish... I feel as though... we could have a future as shipwrights.
I don't want anything to do with a profession that involves going off to get wood in enemy-infested areas.
That just leaves the food to load up... Hey... Where's Chiepoo?
That is a good question! Usually he's the first one to show up whenever food is mentioned...
Derpmaid outta nowhere!
The cat tried to kill the Master's child, which made the Master mad. The Master is always angry. I hate it.
And then, the thing I hate will be gone. Okay?
...leaving the party somewhat confused.
W-Whoa... wait a minute! I don't know about this...
Was that... a mermaid?
No, it was a derpmaid. If I was doing the emoticons-for-character-portraits thing, she would be .
Paula would be
Jewel would be
The ex-knighs make their way through the forest, only to find Chiepoo being chased around by crabs.
Seriously, catman, stop that. You are not Snowe.
The crab "attacks", except it does... nothing. And we can't really do much to it, either. After a couple of rounds, the battle ends.
Our attacks... are not effective...
It's time for...
...the worst excuse ever for cutscene True Rune usage!
Of course this is dumb as fuck, so Lazlo says no.
You want to get out of here? I feel bad for Chiepoo and all, but...
After 36 attempts at saying "fuck no, this is the worst idea ever", Lazlo accidentally selected the other option and pulled out the plot laser. It doesn't even give you any new dialogue if you refuse a couple of times like some earlier But Thous Musts; it just shows this choice over and over until you pick the right option.
I'm firmly convinced that this is something they came up with after someone realized they were running out of time, effort or money, just to get a cutscene use out of the way. The ending to this little island episode isn't bad, it's just... the rune part feels like it got jammed in here for no real reason. He doesn't even do anything with it - it'd be different if he blasted this thing, but he just charges up and I guess the light pisses the crab off because that makes it wake up and attack us for real.
...I can't totally hate a scene that involves seeing Chiepoo chased across the screen by a band of crabs half his size. It's still dumb, though. If it's not fighting back, just grab the cat and get out of there! It'd be too bad for the mermaid, but at least that doesn't involve potentially blasting yourself into ashes to kill a goddamn crab.
Yeah, we're all peachy-keen
Child: It's delicious. This one's really tasty, too.
Man: Really? I'm glad... Let's make it together next time. We'll make lots of funny-shaped ones.
Man: Stay back!! Damn it!! Damn... this Rune!!
Why did it take you...?
Child: Father, I'm okay.
Man: Listen to me. Don't you use that power.
Child: Don't worry... I promise...
I think we see where this is going.
One more light to go.
Child: Father... I'm sorry...
I couldn't let them... The people that burned down your village...
I-I broke... my promise...
I'm so sorry, Father...
...he too fades away.
It is in the past.
That was a tasty crab!
Maybe we should have gone along with Chiepoo from the beginning.
Ack! No offense, Chiepoo, but your face is not something that should be the first thing anyone sees when they wake up after nearly killing themselves with a guilt-powered plot laser.
"How much did I drink at the kindling festival? I had this weird ass dream of Snowe being incompetent and the entire world shitting on me - wait, why are you looking at me like that?"
Hey there... Are you okay?
Lazlo doesn't answer, because he can't, but at least he gets up so he hopefully doesn't have too many serious laser-related injuries.
We're left standing conveniently next to the island's only save point, which means it's about time I cut this update. Next, it's time to blow this popsicle stand!
...too bad it involves going back on the ocean.
The mermaid also has a sketchy portrait if you go talk to her after deciding to stay. However, if you do so, the first day will just repeat over and over and you'll have the same "...!" reaction followed by her disappearing into the lake. You won't even get an item (despite the cutscene showing it glowing on the ground).
Also, here are the others on solid backgrounds. I tried extracting them without backgrounds, but apparently Texmod doesn't work as well with this as it claims to do.
Finally, since I kept griping about the boss fight, I put together a little "director's cut" of the scene with the offending content removed. I freely admit that this makes it more boring and generic, but it's still less stupid than pulling out a True Rune just to put on a light show for a giant enemy crab in order to provoke it into fighting you seriously.