Part 52: Mission 20 (Minerva Route) - Descending Angels
Here we are at the Minerva path. Quatre has returned to the Top Aces list, but Im surprised to see Zechs here.
Had nearly 300k after the last battle, so that went straight into boosting all our Supers with more of everything (theyll need it for this next mission). Dont forget to give the lesser-used squaddies some love if youre going to field them.
Ignore the picture above because Rey and Luna are going to be deploying as event units along with Shinn the game just doesnt tell you, see. So, well be going like this:
Tetsuya/Tetsuya (I had to)
Wasnt expecting much from this mission since Z1s version of it was a cakewalk, but, oh, boy
Off we go.
: Hm hmm ?
: Stella! Youre awake!
: Th-This is
: The hospital. You were very hurt, so we brought you here.
: Hurt ?
: You really dont remember ? Sorry, Stella You went through so many awful things
: A-Aah I was No ! I dont I dont want to die!
: Youre safe, Stella! Theres nothing here to hurt you! And you wont die, because because Ill protect you!
: Protect me ?
: Yeah, I promise! I wont let anything scare you again! I swear Ill protect you!
: Youll protect me Shinn
: You remembered me, Stella?!
: U-Urgh my head hurts
: S-Sorry! Dont worry about any of that right now! Youre safe here, so just rest and get better
: Will I see you again ?
: Of course! Ill come visit you later, absolutely!
By the mess hall, Shinn relates that Stellas in the process of getting better bit by bit. Thats a relief to Chizuru, who hopes shell be getting off JUDAs hospital soon enough. From what the doctors told Shinn (that he could understand), her cardio-pulmonary function is dependent on a drug to work properly, but they think theyll find a way around that before long. Thank you all a ton - I mean it, Shinn says. You guys have done so much for us since the battle of Berlin.
Speaking of Berlin, Jun wonders what the Archangel could be up to right now. Kosuke figures they might be immobile as, ruse or not, they took quite a bit of damage during Angel Down. That theyre safe is good enough, but Shinn hopes to see them later: he never even got the chance to thank(!) Kira for what he did.
Shinns conversion to Christianity aside, Rey comes in looking for him. No, its not time to set off just yet; rather, Durandal is set to arrive real soon, having apparently sped up his timetable to see him and Shinn.
Kuraras rather jealous that theyve a boss thats so in touch with his subordinates (unlike Team D), and it all shows Kouji how serious Durandal is about this. It might be a bit excessive for someone in his station, but it tells that he wants to bring an end to this Logos business today.
Zechs can understand why: Logos has been tormenting the Colonies from the shadows since before OZs creation, so Durandal likely has a long list of grievances with them. Whatever the case, his arrival means we need to start getting ready for battle, so Tetsuya tells everyone to get their game faces on. Shinns already there, thinking about Stella: Ill give this everything I got, and create a world where people can live in peace !
Shift to Heavens Base, Djibril is fuming that Durandal has the BALLS to send a message demanding the bases immediate surrender and the extradition of all Logos people. HAH! An Alliance officer asks what to do, since ZAFT has already surrounded the place. Theyre waiting for a response, apparently.
What kind of idiotic question is that? Why in blazes would Djibril even think of talking to those people?! Have the troops attack and destroy ZAFT now, now, now! What, are they going to fight to the death, then?!
Yes! They must fight! FOR OUR PURE, BLUE WORLD!
: Hello there, Captain. Im so sorry to impose on you so suddenly and on the verge of battle, no less.
: It has been a long while since we met face-to-face, Chairman. But dont you think its rather careless of you to come to Earth in person?
: Perhaps. But the truth is I have something I wanted to give Rey and Shinn myself.
: You have?
: Our latest models, the ZGMF-X42S Destiny and ZGMF-X666S Legend. These units could well be said to have been made especially for you two.
: For us ?!
: Both are state-of-the-art pieces of weaponry, each far and away superior to the standard Mobile Suits. But I am certain the two of you will be capable of making excellent use of them.
: Yes, sir. Thank you very much.
: What is it, Athrun? Is something wrong?
: Chairman, isnt the development of new models forbidden by the Junius Treaty?
: I am well aware that this goes against it, yes.
: Then why? What do you have in mind that youd do that?
: Our current enemies extend beyond the Darius. There are foes, like Logos, that threaten the world as a whole and we will need to fight them.
: Our current situation shifts by the hour, so, if were to safeguard the lives of every human, Im afraid this is not the moment to hesitate to act. All this is done in the name of those who desire peace.
: And, truth be told, I wanted a new unit made for you as well, but we hadnt the funds to make it happen. I hope youll understand.
: Very well
: Besides that, I d also like you two to take this. From this day onward, Shinn Asuka, Rey Za Burrel, you are members of FAITH.
: Were FAITH?!
: Wow! Thats amazing, you guys!
: So now the Minerva, alone, has five FAITH members aboard Thats something, alright.
: Stand tall, Shinn, Rey You defeated the Archangel and Kira Yamato, and deserve every praise.
: Whats the matter, Shinn? Seeing you with that face saddens me too.
: B-But, it wasnt just the two of us who
: Of course, of course. But you should consider this appointment to also be due to your various achievements thus far.
: Youve faced hardships far beyond the scope of your original mission, and Im certain there will be more to come. I have high hopes for both of you.
: You honor us. And we swear well answer your trust in kind !
: Excuse me, Chairman, but weve an emergency!
: Did something happen?
: The Heavens Base forces launched a preemptive strike against our troops!
Gohs pissed with the Alliance what the hell are they trying to pull with this attack?! Theyre gonna PAY FOR THIS! Were going to attack Heavens Base right this goddamn minute!
Anna understands that hes mad, but maybe he should calm down a little? How could he be calm?! If they arent open to dialogue, then pulling our punches wont get us anywhere! Ichitaka sees his point but OUR ALLIES ARE DYING! WE CANT AND WONT LET THEM RUN AMUCK ANYMORE!
So, Goh gets on the mic and yells to Talia that we need to launch now, screw the timetable. Ichitaka doesnt understand why he suddenly started going ballistic like this
Mission 20 (Minerva Route) Descending Angels
: Hmhmhmm, did you seriously expect to conquer Heavens Base with a force like that?!
: ?! That Mobile Suit it cant be!
: Heero youre here!
: I-Its the Wing Zero ! Whats that Gundam doing here ?!
: Hrk ! Any enemy gets destroyed its as simple as that! After him!
: Y-Yes, sir! Troops, engage and destroy the Wing Zero! Dont let him near Heavens Base!
: (He got my info, it seems but I still have my own mission to carry out. Sorry, but I cant afford to hold back.)
: Hand over Relena!
Kill everything, dont lose Heero. Like with the previous mission, evasion decay will seriously bite him in the ass if you send him into the enemies, so just hang back and let them come to you.
Wing Gundam Zero (Heero Yui)
Attack Combo L1
Zero System (Activates over 130 morale, grants +20 to evasion an accuracy, +10 to everything else)
Squad Bonus: Accuracy +5, A rank in Air
Heeros a Gundam protagonist, so you know hes good (though it is hardly Heeros strongest outing). The Wing Zero hits hard, is dodgy/accurate and has great range, but its chugs quite a lot of EN. The lack of Hit & Away is less than ideal, mind, so save him one of those.
As a bonus, the Wing Zero also comes with a MAPW attack, but it has a rather awkward AoE certainly not as easy to use as the regular spin-to-win MAPW he usually gets. All in all, Heeros as reliable as ever (Midorikawa would likely burn Banpresto to the ground if he was ever bad), but hes certainly not our best Real.
So, we pull him back a bit and wait.
First wave of Windams and Daggers move in, though most stay put.
Nothing else gets in range.
Our people come in, Talia and Arthur very confused to see that the battle is still ongoing. How, when intel said all ZAFT troops had been destroyed? Then we catch sight of the Wing Zero and Zechs knows whats up: Heero, as usual, decided to face the enemy by himself (rash as it might be) to save Relena.
Indeed, Ichitaka recognizes the Wing from the videos of the battle at Libra, but Luna is more focused on that trying to take on Heavens Base by himself bit. This goes way past being rash, and straight into madness!
Meaning were all like peas in a pod here! I like this guy! Hyouma proclaims. Quatre also quietly spots Trowa up ahead, still risking his life for his mission well need to deal with him appropriately.
Shinns shocked to also find the pilot of the Wing Zero fighting here, but Luna reminds him to keep moving. Hell be a sitting duck if he stands still like that. Shinn nods and says hes fine more importantly, since shes picked up the flying Impulse Gundam, shell need to keep an eye out for attacks from below as well.
Dont let Shinn and the Minerva get shot down either. Now, this game hasnt really been a challenge thus far, but I definitely felt a spike in the difficulty curve here. For one, youre missing about 40% of your team (including some of your strongest guys), theres a decent amount of water in this stage and the AI is particularly fond of taking a dip, and, lastly, Djibril is sending out a cavalcade of bulky mooks with huge MAPW attacks.
All in all, it means things are going to be slow and actually a bit dangerous to your people. The difference in numbers makes it a lot easier for the AI to swarm and beat your guys either by evasion decay or by sheer attrition, so youll want to be careful as you advance.
Prioritize any MAPW unit thats close by to get them off your hair, be very mindful of your SP and EN usage, and, again, advance slowly and steadily.
And, by the by, Dearka is actually available for deployment I just didnt notice it until it was too late. You can set him into a squad before launching your guys.
Destiny Gundam (Shinn Asuka)
Hyper Deuterion Engine restore 25% of max EN every turn
Squad Bonus: Crit rate +10, mobility +5, A rank in Air
Legend Gundam (Rey Za Burrel)
Hyper Deuterion Engine
Squad Bonus: Armor +100, ranged weapons power +100, A rank in Space
And here we have two excellent additions to our team. Shinns Destiny is pretty much a direct upgrade to everything the Impulse had (especially since, in this game, the other packs were attacks), while Reys a straight-up ranged attacker.
The Destinys about one of the outright strongest Reals in the game (mostly Alto, if you dont consider Iczer-1 solo as a Real), and the addition of Double Image makes an already pretty hard to kill pilot essentially invincible. Its got good range, power and the EN Regen makes everything it has very spammable.
The Legend Gundam is an odd one. You could make a case for it being THE best mook sweeper in the game provided youre in space. You see, its DRAGOON weapons (regular and MAPW) can ONLY be used in that terrain, so it is a bit limited when youre on land. You can get around that on ONE terrain by assigning him someone with a terrain rank-boosting Squad Bonus, but covering both land and air at the same time wont fly, unfortunately.
Mind you, its second strongest weapon is only 200 points weaker than the DRAGOON (cheaper too), so youre not losing much by way of attack power but you only really use Rey in L to go crazy with his Zeorymer-esque MAPW and blast away dozens of mooks. The weapon is very expensive at 120 EN, but the EN regen and squaddies can mitigate that nicely.
First order of business is getting our folks to shore, meaning weve to cut through the first wave. Remember to save your SP, so hug Heines command aura and have Shinji/Ichitaka take point.
Oh, yes, the non-flying Daggers will likely all be underwater. Because fuck you.
Laplace Wall and A.T. Fields still roll all over Alliance mooks. Do be careful with the Zamza-Zahs as their claws WILL go right through them, though.
Ichitaka and Shinji have both taken a kill, so lets see if Aoi can keep that up.
Kouji, Hyouma and Athrun each take a surviving squaddie, while the Tetsuyas finish Heines work.
Following up on Zechs.
And Heero cuts down the one Dagger that survived Rei.
Hyouma, as always, is very attractive to the AI. He takes three kills, while Ichitaka takes two.
And this one decides to tangle with Aoi.
Better for her.
Ichitaka pops a nice chain attack by our southern flank, cutting three mooks down to half HP.
Up top, while Kouji and Athrun each one shot a leader, Shinji takes aim at the latters leftovers.
Bam. Aoi and Talia clear up rest of the north flanks first wave.
Shinn and Luna can clear up after Ichitaka.
I really enjoy how K and L decided that, for Shinns Destiny Gundam cut-ins, theyd just make him ALL MAD, ALL THE TIME.
The Tetsuyas and Rey nab a couple of weakened Daggers nearby.
Go away, Trowa!
The back row starts coming in, with the front Zamza-Zahs trading blows with Shinji and Shinn. In the meantime, whatever was still alive down south dies to Ichitaka and Hyouma when the enemys down to fifteen squads, the plot kicks in.
Its ANOTHER batch of Alliance Troops complete with something Shinn recognizes from Berlin: 5 Destroy Gundams, led by a crazy-as-hell Sting. If anything, hes having the time of his life and calls out to everyone for a fight.
Trowa silently looks on at the fate of the Extended, those born to fight: made to lose their memories, addicted to drugs, and forced out into the battlefield without so much as time to be sad for the friends theyve lost. In a way, they are no different from how we used to be, he sighs.
Misato warns those who havent fought them before of the superlative firepower the Destroys have, but Shinji sees a silver-lining: these are clearly the enemys ace in the hole, so if we can stand up to them, victoryll be ours.
This whole battle comes down to this, so Goh tells everyone to SEND THOSE WHO SIDED WITH LOGOS STRAIGHT TO HELL! Talia slowly confirms, and Durandal, seeing Gohs condition, has an idea of whats going on and dreads the thought.
Shinn and Luna get pestered a bit, weakening three mooks, while Ichitaka and Shinji take, respectively, one and three Daggers/Windams that try to be clever.
Maybe Ive been spoiled by Seven Swells and Meiohs, but the game really isnt playing ball with MAPW setups for me.
At least thats some damage on Trowa, plus a dead mook.
Couple kills for Heine and Anna here; up top, Kouji and Mira do the same.
Get rid of these things ASAP or theyll all blast you.
: Im sure the Chairmans plan is to pave the way towards peace with this assault
: So why am I so ill at ease? Am I the only one feeling that somethings off ?
Aoi finishes it off, and Ichitaka bags one himself below.
Setting an Iron Walld Hyouma and Rei over here to try and bait the enemies attention.
Back south, Tetsuya and Shinn hunt Daggers.
This would probably be a bad time to mention that I forgot Trowa had a MAPW.
Most people here can take it, but not Jun/Boss.
While we slooooowly start chipping away at the incoming mob of Zamza-Zahs, Ichitaka does his job as a distraction perfectly thats four kills for him.
Not enough to save Jun from getting dropped, though. Oh, well. Athrun can handle himself.
I dont understand why it didnt go for Hyouma when hes right there, but this Daggers choice wasnt really any better.
Were now at the eye of the hurricane, and Trowa needs to go. Well converge on him and work our way out, prioritizing Sting and the Zamza-Zahs since they have the morale to MAPW us the Destroys dont (yet). When dealing with the latter, follow the same focus-fire strat as we did back in Berlin.
The Daggers and Windams themselves are either down to flying solo or weakened, but therere still plenty of them. You should be careful when sending folks forward because theyll be all too happy to converge on Talia if given the chance. Do note that Sting has Support Defend L3 and will happily cover Trowa if hes nearby (like he is now), so plan on only your squaddies attack hitting him.
The strategy here isnt really any different what weve been doing, so let me spare you the tedium and fast forward!
: Come, Gundam. I cant allow anyone to know about me.
: Have it your way, nameless soldier ! Ill face you with all I have!
: (Theres no point in prolonging this )
: Im detecting several issues across all systems, likely due to faulty maintenance. Unable to continue fighting retreating.
: (That explosion was self-inflicted Heh, ever the meticulous man.)
: This is your base and youre still blasting the whole damn area?!
: Letting these guys go on would just give us Berlin 2, and Im not taking it!
: So you had mass-produced these things and kept them tucked away, eh ? You probably shot first cause you figured winning would be easy, but you thought wrong! Were not getting dropped by these!
: Hrgh! GODDAMN IIIIT! I swear Im killing all of you next time!
: Uurgh, that useless worm! Are we ready to leave yet?!
: Yes, sir! Weve just finished our preparations!
: Good, because I cannot allow myself to be captured here! Well have to abandon Heavens Base!
: Youre wasting everyones time carrying on this fight and I use the word loosely. Try as you might, your plans will fail!
: Hmph, say whatever you want, but youll be coming along with us, Vice-Foreign Minister Darlian!
: (Heero )
: The enemys ranks are confused ? Did something happen?
: A coded message? Djibrils escaped with Relena from Nameless Clown
: Heero, this is !
: Hm. Only the five of us know this transmission code. It has to be from Trowa.
: Then its clear what we should do. Go! Well handle this!
: Alright. Take care of it.
*Heero starts flying out the area.*
: The winged Gundam Earths enemy Die !
: GET AWAY FROM HIM!!
Well see this attack properly in a sec.
: Pilot of ZAFT
: Get going! Youre also trying to save someone, right? Then you better make it happen!
: Apologies, and thank you. Ill go on ahead.
: Alright, now the rest of us just gotta keep pushing through this!
: Right on!
: Round two with these things. Id rather not pit power against power with em, though
: Dont worry about it Ive got our generator 100% wrapped around my fingers. We can handle a head-on approach.
: If you say so, Im game. Well take them as we always do up close and personal!
Behold Shinns MY FAMILY IS DEAAAAAAD attack!
: The EVA might just be able to hold against an attack like that ! And, in that case, what I can do is !
: Radar is clear of enemy troops!
: Has Djibril been found yet?
: Our forces are searching the adjacent area, but his whereabouts and that of Vice-Foreign Minister Darlian are unknown.
: As for the Logos members left within the base, they are currently being arrested.
: So they snuck out the base right under our noses? Ive to give them props for pulling that off.
: Not the time to be impressed, Kurara!
: So weve brought the base down, but this is all far from over
: Still, now that weve arrested several of Logos leadership, their capacity to act as they have has been severely undercut. Id say weve made some major progress today.
: But the fact remains that Djibril escaped. We must figure out where hes scurried off to
: Yes, youre right
Couple of convos we missed here:
: Were finally taking the fight to Logos, and giving the world Gil dreams of a chance to be born !
: And Ill readily do anything within my power to make it so!
: Heheheh A new model, eh? Heres hoping youll be fun to kill!
: That unit They did to all of you what they did to Stella?! Stop this! Theyre messing with your memories to manipulate you!
: Cut with your bull, man! Who gives a damn about memories?!
: I only need one thing to win: the Destroy! You LOTUS might be strong, but it wont save you!!
: How How can you do this ? Logos ! Youre gonna pay!!
: Im a proud ZAFT Red, too ! So Ill stand and fight even against this awful MS!
: Alice, Im taking in as much of their beam attacks as we can! Keep an eye on how much damage were getting, alright?
: Roger that! Though I wish I could use that technique again today. Id make fighting them at least a bit easier
: Dont even think about that! We can do just fine with our current bag of tricks!
: Life was busy enough being the Chairmans messenger boy/bodyguard, and now I have to take part in sieges too .?
: Yeesh, I bet things wouldve been a whole lot simpler if I was still working with Yzak!
Cut to the Archangel, theyve gotten word of the Alliances defeat and Djibrils escape. Having lost Heavens Base, Lacus and Waltfeld see only one place for the guy to take shelter: Orb. From there, hell likely set out towards place and they figure ZAFT is aware of this.
Miriallia sees that war is about to return to that country, and while Murrue wants to do something about it, the Archangel still needs some time to complete its repairs. Lacus seems to have an idea, though, and asks Kira to accompany her into space.
You see, she has some new strength to give him though she understands how hed be loath to take it. Kira, however, says its fine: If its that strength thatd help me keep everyone safe, then I
While Ichitakas fuming over Djibril slipping through our fingers, Mira sighs at how disgraceful the guys showing himself to be for someone whos been manipulating the world into war for all this time. Anna had hoped this wouldve put an end to the conflict, but it looks like well have more to do still.
On the flip side, Hyoumas impressed with how Shinn helped the Wing Zeros pilot today. That was some real quick thinking, Sakuya nods. That guy was fighting to save someone, just like I did, Shinn mulls. When I thought of that, I realized I wanted to help him... just like Kira Yamato helped me save Stella.
Tetsuya Kouji laughs at how much Shinns changed over this he was a whole lot more standoffish, difficult to approach, before. Way Quatre sees it, he wasnt the only one to change for the better: every single one have been changing, bit by bit, as weve come to open up and understand one another.
Now if only mankind as a whole could change like this, Mira ponders
Shinns taken the time to approach Zechs and asks if hes fine with not going with the Wing Zeros pilot when he had the chance. Why does Shinn think that? Well, Relena is his sister, no? And someone like Zechs obviously has some amount of freedom to act however he wants to.
Relena has long since drifted out of my reach, Zechs answers. Right now, Ive dedicated myself to simply putting out the fires of war. Noin says the best we could do is leave Relena to Heero and focus on our own mission. Moreover, being able to act with freedom doesnt mean doing whatever you feel like doing thatd be quite the mistake, Noin figures.
Youre FAITH now, so youve also been given a lot of freedom to exercise. But keep in mind: that status is to be used responsibly, lest imprudence make it backfire, Zechs warns him, and Shinn understands what hes getting at. Hell try and be mindful of how he acts with his newly given leeway.
As for Relena, Zechs is of course worried about her. But he still trusts that Heero will rescue her.
Finally, Kirikos put in a call to the Minerva: shed like Goh to come back to Dannar Base on the double. Goh protests that this is hardly the time for him to run back home, but Kiriko shushes him, saying that were racing against the clock here.
JUDAs just sent over the report for his periodic exams and its not good: Gohs Insania Virus infection has taken a turn for the worst. The results show that he could have a full-on Rabid Syndrome outbreak at any second!