Part 59: A Letter of ChallengeWe have been issued a challenge!
So let's get on that.
Much like the last one, this only requires you to enter the ruins at any time, and it'll take you all the way to the bottom. Now if only we could get this service going outside those two specific quests...
The Flowing Chamber is more subdued than the Rage Chamber. The waterfall looks quite nice and the water flowing under the platforms is rather pretty, but it is naturally not as eye-catching as the one where the floor is literally lava. Apart from that, it's the same deal here: water is impassable unless you're flying, and of course there will be treasures buried on the outer platforms. Unlike the last time, however, there's no treasure on this version of the map, so I'll still have to make my way down here the regular way - but that's for another time. Right now, we have a duel to fight.
Unlike the egg quest, we're at a disadvantage this time - numerically, at least.
We can only bring four people to contend with the mercs, who are backed by two skeletons and two bats (because there's just no way you're getting away from those things.) This time, Kyril is required, but I'm going to have him sit back and watch how a real protagonist handles this.
I was debating putting on the champion's rune and benching Lazlo for this fight just so they could have a fair shot, but then I asked myself, what have the mercs done to deserve that?
Nothing, was the answer. Nothing at all.
This time they'll waste little time hanging back and will start sort of shuffling towards us from the beginning of the fight,
...and that puts them right in Lazlo's sights.
Kyril is suitably impressed.
They're being somewhat clever...
...but in the end the biggest annoyances here are the fly lizards, which, as always, suck.
At higher levels, they also have access to offensive spells, but they are so horrendously weak, all they're doing is wake Lazlo up. (Remember that he's wearing a wizard rune which lowers his MDF.)
All I have to do is wait until they either run our of charges or get de-synced enough for me to kill something. The red merc went down pretty soon after the first two. The blue merc ran away. He's only delaying the inevitable.
These guys are delaying it more.
One actually goes after Kyril.
Two birds, one stone, except instead of birds it's a dumb merc and an annoying bat and instead of a stone it's a fourth level spell from a true rune, but don't sweat the small stuff.
And that was the last we'll see of them.
The second bat seals its fate by sleeping Kyril.
Had it gone after Lazlo instead, it could have bought itself a couple of extra rounds, but as it is, Lazlo just kills it and ends the map.
Ritual suicide sounds like a good solution to all your problems.
And many of mine.
At least the you-shaped ones.
I'd have transcribed this, but, it amused me to see Kyril talk in his sleep.
We don't get a chance to say no. All four mercs join us without further discussion.
They are all as painfully generic as ever and come with first level weapons, barely any equipment, and no skills. Their weapons are called "sword", "spear", "bow" and "staff". They have neither names nor personalities, and though they are not the worst we've picked up, they will see no use.
Here's Maxine for comparison with the leader, who is probably the best of the lot, and a pretty good mage - supposedly she's faster than most of the others, but judging by these stats, well, fucked if I know.
And that's the end of that. We get no reward, and the mercs themselves don't count.
It's obvious that no one gives a fuck about support conversations, and that means a couple of hours I don't have to spend passing turns with useless characters, so that's fine by me. Instead, here follows a quick run through the rest of the ruins.
The most interesting thing that happened outside the elemental chambers was that I ran into the three-golem formation on the fifth floor.
As painful as they were on the first run, a level 40 character can tank a few 120 damage hits no problem. It's a good thing we came here when we first did, because it's more fun to show off an enemy that's actually a threat.
Now, not so much.
Would have been neat if it were Genkaku Armour, but eh. It's pretty strong and it gives a MDF buff when worn, but is classed as heavy armour, so few people can equip it.
The other two chests contained a Violence Orb and another Dragon Shield, neither of which we'll find any use for.
It was a lightning day, so here's the appropriate chamber.
Looks okay, but nothing that special.
The party starts split up, with four characters on each side. I'm not bringing anyone else, so the other slots are empty.
Thunder Dragons are pretty powerful, like the Rage Dragons, but since they're lightning types, they have more single target attacks. Neither of the two here used its breath attack in this fight, so I don't know what that's like.
They die in a little swirl of lightning.
As the fight goes on, the chamber "gets turns," indicated by the leftmost icon on top. When it does, lightning strikes one of the spikes and turns the surrounding area lightning elemental. It looks neat, but doesn't really affect the fight much, although it does of course strengthen all the enemies that don't fly.
And of course, there are bats.
The dragon doesn't like me much.
But it dies before it can do any real harm. The bats, while they could no doubt have done some damage to Rene, are content to throw themselves against Lazlo, and soon follow it.
This is another piece that boosts terrain element effects. The DEF boost is okay, but it's probably not going to see any use.
There's only one chest on the map. These are arm gear; pretty good, but no special properties.
We already have one of these...
...but these are new. Both "increase the chance of being protected" and are decent pieces of gear, but only adult female characters can use them.
Like the previous ones, this pays 5000p, 1000sp, and a bun I'll never get around to using.
Next, the last of the elemental chambers.