Part 77: CH72: SolomusCH72: Solomus
OK first things first I'm going to talk a little about the experience system in Tales of Graces. While I don't know the exact formula, the experience you get from monsters seems to be determined by your relative level.
Like that - those are the same enemies at different levels. Experience doesn't seem to be directly affected by difficulty level, but if it moves the enemies into a different band of levels (I'm not sure how far you have to move to get "out of band") it can go up or down a lot.
: So before fighting Solomus, we turned in a whole bunch of inn requests, in case the rewards came in handy. Some of the latter ones were a little strange...
: Asbel, something's coming!
At full HP he's another 999,999hp wonder. He's got NO weaknesses, which is kind of annoying.
He's another copy of the Illusionist from the Coliseum.
...aaaaaand I may have forgot to equip Pascal's damage reduction title.
EXCEPT OH FUCK KILLING FIELD.
I'd need to check, but I'm pretty sure that's hitting way harder than Emeraude 2.0's was. Not hard enough to trigger any reduction titles though(even Cheria's doesn't kick in below 500 damage).
He's got something like Gentleeel's "run up and swim around" thing, but he seems to just belly flop.
Oh, and he also summons Fakes.
This first one got annihilated before I noticed it was there.
Ah, my least favorite spell.
A better look at the fake. Too bad for the first one spawning in on Cheria's high-end B-Arte! Apparently a Fake is a chest-dwelling rabbit of some kind.
: Um... Who are you?
: ...Ohmigosh! Grandpa?!
: Yeah, it's my grandpa!
: Well, not by blood.
: Grandpa raised me and Fourier all by himself. It's good to see you again, Grandpa!
: Ho ho ho!
: Excuse me, but do you know where we are?
: This is a space that I created in order to craft the Gentleman.
: You mean that creature we just fought?
: Indeed. That's why I had you collect the materials I needed for its construction.
: Um yeah, but I think we just killed it. Is that all right?
: Oh heavens, yes. I'll just think up something else! That's why I'm here, after all! Here, I know. I'll give you something you'll like. Go ahead and take your pick!
You get to chose from the key ingredient in the ultimate versions of the three types of armor: male, female, unisex. IMO the unisex one is the best, balanced defensive stats are best.
: Well, I guess we'd better get going, huh?
: Are you sure, Pascal?
: Oh, sure. Grandpa isn't going anywhere. ...Right?
: Correct. The enclave is too small for my taste!
: Well, Fourier and I are doing great, so don't you worry about us.
: All right. You just keep doing what you love, then.
: You too, Grandpa! See you again soon!
: You know, I can see how you would've been raised by that man.
: He seems like a good guy.
: Well, you know. He IS my grandpa!
Anyway, way back in the past around update 50 or so, we stole some fur from the Rockgagong and the researcher who took it said we needed to give it a smackdown to teach it not to be a dick to humans. So we're going to do that.
This title gives Cheria a special ability: it adds any damage she takes to the next attack she makes that connects.
: So Pascal came up with some crazy scheme to have Cheria use a modified version of what they did to the Fodra Queen, basically use time manipulation to snap back an attack. Everybody else hung back to grab her and pop in a Life Bottle if things went south.
: They even set the Eleth Mixer to make her MORE vulnerable to attack. As if being smashed by a foot bigger than your house isn't enough! I think she was being hit 8 times as hard or something, it was nuts.
: So of course Cheria goes in and does it because she's always willing to help out with crazy stuff to benefit others.
OK, so what we're doing here is pretty simple. Remember how with really good timing you can hit an Eleth Burst right as you die to come back to life?
Now remember what that title does?
Now remember that bosses can't have more than 999,999hp.
Anyway, enough screwing around. I've dualized this enough to make it valuable enough to enter the final level of the Zhonecage. You also have to defeat all previous levels and the three Chroma dragons, but hey they're pretty easy by this point.
Don't watch all of that. Instead just watch the first fight and the last fight. No matter how much the stats are in my favor (I'm 15 levels higher for the last video) the damn lizards will still kill me if I fuck up, and it's still taking everything I have.
So anyway this is the dragon level. All dragons, all the time. Even the lizard back there is also a dragon.
OK so I'm pretty sure the lizards are actually from Battletoads or something. Rather than attacking like a not-designed-to-fuck-you-over monster, they just run at you and deal damage if you touch them. Note that I forgot to equip Asbel's reduction title here, so he's getting hit for full.
So if you watch the dungeon video all the way through, you'll get used to seeing stuff like this.
But I don't die, because fuck that lizard, I'm giving him no satisfaction. EVER.
Anyway while I'm here I level everyone to 200. This is the maximum level for me, but bosses can be a bit higher. Solomus here is 215, for example.
: This was it. The heart of the Zhonecage.
: Are you Solomus? Um...we've come to... Well, you see...
: We're here to stop you from destroying the world.
: Oh, and I need the lapcomp back, y'okay?
: I am the one designated Solomus. Master and architect of the Chroma Dragons which bind the valkines cryas. Thou may reclaim thy toy; Amarcian dabbling in ancient wisdom no longer amuses me.
: Solomus. Why are you trying to destroy the world?
: Thou art as a child filled with questions, and yet you understand nothing. I seek only to save this world.
I am the Satellite Defense System which rules the aquasphere and Ephinea. Lambda has broken the chains of bondage and even now runs free over the world. It is my sworn province to stop this threat by whatever means I deem necessary.
: Your protection will destroy us all!
: I must gather more eleth here. Just you wait. I shall slaughter the feeble animals that live on the surface.
: Your plan ends here and now! And by these hands!
: You would do best not to underestimate us.
: There's nowhere left to run!
: I would not deign to flee such as thou.
: Prepare yourself, Solomus!
Soooo. Solomus has only two weaknesses, Human and Dragon. I brought Asbel and Cheria to hit the Dragon weakness, while Sophie and Richard hit the Human one. Richard obviously has to be played by Malik because we technically don't have him, but why is Hubert Sophie? Well, mostly for the Accuracy. Sophie never got her "100 hit combo" title before I got bored with that and thus has no +1 accuracy on level up skill. Thus, she's about 100 or so accuracy behind where she could be, and something like 300 behind Hubert. Solomus's evasion is a lot lower than Reala's, but it's still enough that it matters a lot. I need to build the longest combos I can to maximize the whole "hitting all the weaknesses in one combo" damage bonus.
Solomus himself is mostly a melee fighter. He has three spells, but he'll cast them each once, ever.
Also his melee combo is long like a Lord of the Rings: Extended Edition marathon.
But you know what? I can do some long combos too, and mine are way way longer. This is the first of four Eleth bursts I get, all of which are enhanced by the book of Awakening, thanks to my 5500 or so Eleth capacity.
So I just shaved off 20% of his total HP in one combo, no big.
Holy Lance comes out at I think 75% HP. It's not going to wipe you out.
Also he splits off 3 clones. The three clones in theory also have his "three spells" deal, but I don't see them cast all of them very often. Apparently if they get interrupted they won't try again.
Since Solomus can totally beat us to death if we don't outnumber him, these guys gotta go. In theory he'll reabsorb them eventually, but I've never seen that happen either because fuck letting them stick around.
Yeah like this, this can happen. Their Holy Lances were a bit better timed than the main Solomus's.
It's sort of a race between them wiping us and the Eleth Burst saving us. Note that Cheria is too busy getting triple-teamed to use the Life Bottle on me.
Whew. Basically I blow them all up during the Eleth Burst.
Good thing too, because I might have been fucked if any were there for the Eleth Break.
Because the copies do everything the original does.
So that's really 67716 damage.
At about half he does Indignation.
So the 50% damage reduction titles are really good. The only title I even consider using over them for "real fights" is Cheria's casting speed boost titles (I'm not sure which one provides the biggest boost).
Anyway we've gotten him most of the way down now. And used 3 Eleth Bursts so far, but we're by no means safe.
This is probably the spell he uses with the best chance of wiping you. His clones don't normally get to cast it because they die too fast.
Yeah Richard's "new" spells were the spells Solomus uses.
And then he splits. Thank goodness for that nearly full Eleth Burst meter.
Eleth Burst Four.
Suck Mystic Arte and die.
OK, here's the last "fun" part. Below 10% HP he counters any item use with Shining Gate (one of the Mystic Artes Fodra Queen uses) which will 100% one-shot the party. You know, because this game is hilarious that way.
So I blow him up first Eleth Burst 5 motherfucker. Book of Awakening doesn't have enough Eleth left in the tank but it'll only take 12 seconds anyway.
Make that 8-ish.
Too bad I'm maxxed out on levels
: Solomus, ultimate Humanoid of the Ancient Amarcians, had been defeated.
: Thou hast...defeated me. The very thought fills me with dismay.
: What are you so afraid of?
: With this, Lambda's strength grows ever greater. It may now be too great for even thee to defeat.
: What are you talking about?
: I gathered the surface eleth in this place so as to prevent Lambda from absorbing it. I slaughtered countless animals and claimed their eleth. Livestock, monsters, beasts... Nothing was spared.
: Oh my gosh...
: But, Lambda is now our frie-MPH!
: Ssssh Asbel. I don't think we want to tell him that right now. Play along like you're trying to defeat Lambda.
: Got it.
: Wait. So if you were trying to stop Lambda, we just made a terrible mistake. We never should have fought you!
: Solomus is wrong, Asbel. The only reason this happened is because the system went all kooky. Now we have to restore it to its original state.
: How do we do that?
: Oh hey! That's it!
The lapcomp should totally be able to reboot this place! Look at you, Sis! Your little invention is gonna save the world!
Okay, here we go!
: Huh...? What... What have I been doing...?
: You did it!
: I sure did!
: Wait, what's that?
: It's a chick in her underwear!
: S-Sophie! Don't look!
: What's wrong?
: It's...uh...not for children!
: Oh, she's kind of hot.
: I've seen better!
: Hey, guys? I think that's something Frederic was looking at.
: The old man's got taste.
: Eeeeew! Grandpa!
: Ohmigosh, he's got like 600 more pictures on this thing!
: THIS is why he borrowed the lapcomp?!
: You are never to touch the lapcomp ever again! Do you hear me?
: Cheria? He's a grown man.
Think about it from his perspective, and just-
: Don't you dare try to keep that picture!
: Urgh... M-My head...
: Y-Yeah... Mine hurts, too...
: Now that Solomus is back to normal, the eleth levels are dropping. It looks like we won't need to worry about it affecting us anymore.
: Well, it looks like our business here is done!
: Come on, Frederic. Let's go home.
: My apologies, Lord Asbel, but...
: You see, even as we speak, Solomus is beginning to gather eleth anew.
: What? Why?
: If humans wish to continue in peace, the Terma Ten must live on in some form. For the time being, Frederic and I will need to move between here and the surface.
: ...I guess. Just be careful!
: Thank you, Cheria. So, then, as you can see, I will be needing the lapcomp back...
: ...Nice try.
: Well... I guess we should be off. We still have lots to do.
: OK, so let me see if I've got this straight. Solomus is seeing Lambda out and about is going to go into "try to kill Lambda mode" after a certain amount of time until he manages to destroy Lambda.
: But he can't destroy Lambda. He's not made to annihilate him like I was, so he can't do any better than force him into dormancy again and again.
: If only we could do something to convince him we've beaten Lambda. Then I could get him to let me put him into diagnostic mode and maybe fix his faulty... everything. Wow, that guy was put together in such a hurry. The only thing that works is the preservation function.
: I have an idea. I'll go to Fodra and have a talk with Lambda about this. Asbel, Sophie, you come too.