Part 11: The Woman Who LamentsPart XI: The Woman Who Laments
Milla's Shrine here has nothing to see (can't even go into the building). But there is an elemental ore point that gave me 30 orbs in the corner of the map, though. However, once you're done recovering from Chronos, time to hit the trails on the way to Nia Khera, this time from the opposite direction.
Hm...there's something off about this screenshot.
Oh yeah, it's Leia suspending herself in mid-air while she does basic attacks on that Treant. It looked extremely goofy once I realized what she was doing. Treants, by the way, are gigantic punching bags. It's really fun to just smack them.
Anyway, there's not a huge amount to do here out of the ordinary, so upon approaching the area exit...
Upon the defeat of the first little goblin enemy, a big one will show up. This is not a real fight, however. Simply defeat all the small ones, and the "battle" will come to an end.
Chromatus! Any time now!
Lousy time to get stage-fright!
Another timely intervention...but doesn't she look familiar?
This place is very sacred to us, you know. Outsiders aren't welcome.
That was the version of Milla from this dimension, right?!
Let's push on to Nia Khera?
But we've got a problem.
Isn't Ludger our ticket home to the prime dimension? If he can't transform anymore, then we're stuck.
So that's what was off... Well, if there's nothing else, might as well head to town to try to figure out what's different about this dimension's history. That was definitely Milla, though.
And press on I did...
Ludger! Hey, you big dummy. Don't make me worry like that!
Looks like everybody's okay.
Before we can get some quality time between siblings...
DODA, here. After analyzing coordinate deviation of the fractured dimension...we've determined there's a high probability it contains a Waymarker. If a Waymarker is found, its retrieval will become your top priority.
It would help if we knew what we were looking for, but I'll keep that mind, I guess...
We risked it all, but it seems things worked out.
What's a Waymarker?
They're clues to Canaan's location, all hidden in deeply fractured dimensions.
Leave the rest to me. I'm taking that pocketwatch.
Like hell you are. I guess Julius is just pretending that whole train incident didn't happen or something, or that we're in waaaaaay too deep to back out now. Go on, Ludger, R1 him.
Ludger has been worried sick about you this entire time, Julius. He's public enemy number one. He had to sign on with Spirius.
Well, Dillinger would probably wear a classy outfit like Ludger's. Checks out.
That true? I'm sorry. You leave Spirius to me, Ludger. You understand? You don't have to worry about a thing.
This is my daddy's watch!
Hand it over.
I told you! It's my daddy's!
No, it's not.
Yes it is! Ludger's watch and Daddy's watch got mashed into a single one!
Julius shows a bit of interest in Elle saying that...
Is she the one?
He looks ready to start something, but something about his left arm is hurting him.
Wait, do I know you? I'd remember such a motley crew.
I'll bet you're always hungry. C'mon.
Rollo?! Wait up!
We should follow them, Ludger! She might be the catalyst!
Oh man, having to turn our blades against Milla? Even with an Alternate Milla, that's asking a hell of a lot... Especially since the Milla from Xillia 1 is the ultimate Team Mom in JRPG history. May a thousand plagues descend on the house of any who dislike Milla Maxwell.
However, the rest of the team sans Alvin and Rowen take off after Milla, Elle, and Rollo...
After you, big bro.
I don't need a minder.
Yeah, well, you're getting one all the same. You just tried to attack Elle, for cryin' out loud. So now you have the honor of my constant supervision.
I feel so trusted.
After that scene, our next task is to go look for where those three went. You can talk to some of the folks here in Alt. Nia Khera, but there's no need right now.
At one point in Xillia 1, we had to get Milla her spirit powers back by finding these various elemental orbs around town. Their return here must mean the Milla of this dimension is significantly weaker than the Milla of the prime dimension. Let's just keep that in mind...
By the way, the weapon shop in town is carrying new and better weapons for Leia and Alvin. Both are pretty pricy (1990 and 2150 respectively). The choice is yours if you want to upgrade now.
This is the building where we want to go next. Let's see what kind of cook the Milla of this world is. Can't be worse than OG Milla...
Just so it isn't lost to the ether, if you talk to Rollo before starting this scene, he'll say "Meow~". Just for the record, you understand.
Hey, it's not our fault you're a speed-demon, kiddo.
R1 it is. No reason not to raise Elle's affection if we can help it, and the other choice won't do anything positive for us.
Fancy-looking feast you have there, Rollo.
Milla made it for us! It's super tasty! Right
Milla's really into cooking, but she says no one in the village will eat her food. I wonder how come?
What do you people think you're doing in my home?
Hey! The soup wasn't gross at all! Thank you!
Well, you must be eating some pretty terrible stuff if you thought my cooking was good.
I eat great stuff! My daddy makes all my food for me, and he's a super-duper good cook! He'll spend hours and hours making his special soup. He's the best cook ever! Yeah.
If it's that good, maybe I'll ask him for the recipe.
I can ask him for you, y'know, 'cause you fed me and all.
I'd like that.
My eyesight must be failing as I write this update, since something is off about Muzet today... Or Fractured Muzet, as the case may be.
Eww... You've been concocting that putrid human food again, haven't you?
You know full well how much that smell bothers me!
Jeez...considering the Prime Muzet's feelings toward Milla, we might have finally found our divergence catalyst.
What's going on with her eyes?
Forgive me, Muzet...
What're you doing?!
What in the world?!
Yeeeeup, Muzet is the target.
Muzet?! What was that?!
Quit your stammering! Anyway, it's time for me to be going.
You're done here, aren't you? You'd best leave before we return.
Was that the catalyst reacting to Ludger, perhaps?
You mean to tell me Muzet is the catalyst?
Yes, for a certainty.
If we kill Muzet, this world will disappear.
I wonder where those two were going?
I bet the villagers would know.
Let's split up and ask them.
Please take care of Jude. I don't want him involved in this.
I understand. He is in good hands. Jude. Elize. Why don't you join me?
Well, I can take a few guesses where they're headed, but I'll save it for now. Also, this is a good skit, you should watch it.
So the story of Muzet and Milla in this world seems to be that certain Elympions made it over the schism like in the prime dimension, but instead of a persistent nemesis of Rieze Maxia that stayed under the surface, they were gradually wiped out, along with their spyrixes, but at a heavy cost to Rieze Maxia and Milla.
Muzet, however, lost the use of her eyes but remains quite a bit more powerful than Milla. Also, it seems the Four Great Spirits, who Maxwell normally lords over, were nearly destroyed by Exodus, but managed to escape back to the Spirit Realm, where Milla made a brief pit stop in the first game but otherwise has not been seen in the Xillia games.
Most importantly, one of the old guys near the entrance to Nia Khera we took earlier this update says Muzet is up to something at the Nia Khera Hallowmont that she doesn't tell Milla about. Looks like we need to crash her one-spirit party. The Hallowmont is located next to Milla's Shrine, so we need to do a little backtracking, once you're prepared.
One thing I did to prepare was getting Fruit Salad (Medium), which raises P. ATK / DEF, and A. ATK / DEF by 10% for five battles. Pretty good meal, gotta say.
Back at the Spiritway, we have a couple skits. One in the first area and the other in the second. For this skit, both choices will raise an NPC's affection, with L1 increasing Julius' and R1 increasing Elle's. This skit also has a sneak peek into Ludger's love life, or lack thereof. Also, this skit reveals Julius is no match for Elle.
For this skit, L1 increases Julius' and R1 increases Bisley's. I went with L1, however.
Upon returning to the shrine...
A woman in trouble
I thought I told you to leave.
Yikes! However, Julius blocked the fireball.
What're you doing?!
She's holding a spyrix! It's our mission to destroy spyrix technology along with anybody who uses it!
We've really riled her up. So now what?
Fighting her is not going to make this any better, and it's not like anyone in the party has the heart to fight anyone who looks like Milla, even if it isn't the Milla we all know and love. Let's see how far deception takes us...
I'm the smooth talker. Leave it to me.
You'd lie to a friend?
Don't forget, she's going to disappear soon anyway. Hey, listen to me. There's something wrong with your sister. You know that, don't you?
With Muzet? That's preposterous!
Again, while "witch" may be one among many appropriate descriptors, the theme is "diplomatic" here.
Y-Yes... But that's my fault. She lost her sight because of me.
Alright, making progress with the talks here. The next step is to deflect blame away from her actions, whatever they were, and onto the real problem, even if she doesn't know what a "divergence catalyst" is.
You saw it too, right? That thing glowing in her body? There's no way you could've missed it.
That's a divergence catalyst. It possesses people and warps reality.
It's a bad thing, and we have to get rid of it!
...is what the catalysts really are, when you get right down to it.
An object that warps reality. It's just like a spyrix.
The two of you used to be inseparable, weren't you? Is she really the type of person would would smack her own sister like that?
Never! Muzet was always so kind! She lost her sight trying to protect me!
The sister I remember...
...was a different person.
Good thing Ludger here has the power to smoke out our catalysts and destroy them.
Ludger demonstrates the Chromatus for Milla...
Is that...the power of the spirits? If this "catalyst" is destroyed, will Muzet go back to normal?
I'd rather not blatantly lie, when we know the awful truth coming round the bend, but we should go with the safe, non-committal response.
Maybe once she's better, Muzet will finally compliment me on my cooking. All right, I'll help you until the catalyst is destroyed. My sister relies on sound and smell to get around. Eliminate those and she's dead in the water.
You sure about this?
*nod* Come. She should be at the top of the Nia Khera Hallowmont.
Can you do this?
Ludger is clearly worried...
Stop giving the kid so much grief, Julius. Sometimes you need to get your hands dirty.
Don't I know it. That's what worries me.
So even if it's just not the same, and can never be thus, Lady Dhaos has finally joined our party, finally reuniting in a gameplay sense, the original cast (however, Jude, Rowen, and Elize are not available).
Before continuing on to the mountain, make sure to set an Extractor for Milla (because this world does not have any spyrix-technology based items, so she doesn't have one at all), and all the skills you think she'll need. Milla is fun as hell to play as, so I'll be playing as her for the majority of this brief dungeon.
Also, after Milla joined the party I got all of her affection skits at once, because she's at level 10 affection in my alternate playthrough. I'm including all of them here. If you haven't finished this game, you'll understand why soon enough.
Make sure you pick up the Blessed Blade from just inside the shrine, on the back left wall of the place (there's also an improvement to Milla's starting armor and Soda Rice, which is +30% EXP for 3 battles). Other than that, the path to the mountain is exactly where it was in the first game: behind the altar in the middle of the building, there's a tapestry.
Examine it, Ludger will pull it down, and the door will be right in front of you.
Also, is that a Japanese character in the middle of the tapestry, and if so, does anyone know what it means?
The dungeon itself is mostly composed of tight mountain trails, as it should. There are a bunch of little openings in the rock walls for you to crawl through and find nice treasures, which you really should (including the Garnet ring, which reduces Fire damage by 50%, and will be an amazing help against this upcoming boss). Other than that, the path to the summit is almost a complete straight shot once you climb up this first vine.
Gameplay-wise, as I said, Milla is a ton of fun to play with. She's one of only three characters (as I was informed in the thread, Alvin also qualifies), that can hit all 9 elements on her own, a ton of her melee artes can hit equally well in the air or on the ground, she's plenty fast (though a touch slower than Swords Ludger), and she has a nice balance between HP and TP.
Her special ability is Spirit Shift. How it works is that Milla is technically a battle mage, with a huge emphasis on "battle". She has quite a few spirit artes, including Fireball, Wind Lance, Arrivederci (Wind spell), Rock Trine, and will learn quite a few more. To cast those artes as spells, hold circle when you're using them, and Milla was cast. But, if you just press circle once and don't hold the button down, you'll perform a Spirit Shift, and that spell will become a normal arte.
To give you an example from this screenshot, I have Fireball set on tilt left / right + circle. By using it like a normal arte, it became Flare Bomb, which does some nice Fire-damage and pushes enemies away. Another example is Wind Lance, which on its own is pretty useless, but Spirit Shifted becomes Wind Blade, which is a two-hit arte that can be used in air (like a lot of Milla's artes), and is one of a handful of artes that can forcefully get a downed enemy back into a combo. Very handy. Grave (Rock Trine's Spirit Shift) does the same thing. Splash gives Aqua Protection, which just throws out a few water orbs to surround Milla and stagger anyone who gets caught in them. It's eh.
Milla's support skill is Bind. When Milla and her partner are on opposite sides of the same enemy, there's a chance Milla could throw out a magical something and freeze the enemy right in their tracks for, let's say, five seconds. The odds are greater on certain types of enemies (flying foes get Binded all the time), but it can work on any type. It's not something that will probably make a difference in a difficult battle, but you never know.
Oh yeah, and she has a couple Dhaos lines for her special victory quotes: "If there is evil, it is in the hearts of men", and another one goes, if I recall correctly, "If you oppose me, you will face total annihilation!" or something very close to that. The first one is a weird case, because unless my memory of Phantasia is particularly foggy (it has been quite a few years since I played it, but I beat the game itself a couple times), the first time the player heard it, another character was saying it, but said character was quoting Dhaos.
Basically, I would say Milla's Dhaos costume is far and away the best of the DLC costumes.
Ooh, another skit. However, I must take issue with Leia's characterization of Prime Muzet as being bad in any way. She's awesome.
Ah yes, this feature. When you defeat a certain number of a generic monster (from the humble Alest Plant to the powerful enemies of the bonus dungeon), you'll get free SP points, that you only otherwise get from leveling up / learning new skills. I was actually curious why I had so many SP going into this playthrough. After I got this notification I finally remembered why.
And we've finally made it to the top of the mountain (after a save point. Be prepared, folks), and we've got a spirit to bring down...
Please... I've carried out my mission beyond your expectations. May I finally return to the spirit realm now?
Every night, my sister mutters things like this to herself.
Is she talking to your daddy?
I don't know. She refuses to tell me. Listen, I'll distract her, but it won't work for long. Hey...
What did I say about wandering beyond the shrine?!
But I was worried about you. What are you doing here, Muzet?
None of your business!
Why would you say that to me? You used to tell me everything!
I have nothing more to say to you, Milla! Now go home!
Tell me why... Tell me the reason you've been acting like this!
What they told me was true! You monster!
How dare you call me that, human!
Look out! Damn it!
Okay, so...this fight SUCKS. Coming off of Chronos, you might think you're a pretty tough guy, and if you've come this far on Moderate or Hard, you are, don't get me wrong. But the number one reason this fight sucks is because, even though Muzet has a very exploitable weakness (she's weak to Light, which the Blessed Blade always hits for), she's one among a few enemies in this game that can just ignore a combo when they want. In that, when you have a combo going, no matter how long it is, there's a chance she'll just teleport out of it. That's certainly her right, but makes this fight a total pain in the ass that few other bosses in this game can match.
Also, one more important note with Power Combos going forward, just so that it's on the table: enemies don't particularly like getting hit with the same element two times in a row. For example, my Ludger knows the arte Hungry Hunter, which is a Light-elemental Hammer arte. For whatever reason, the AI will nearly always break out a potential Power Combo if you start the combo using this arte, or artes like it (Hammer Toss, for example, which I use a lot). Bosses are more prone to this than normal enemies, so your best bet is to start a Power Combo of with a single-hit attack (Bubble Blast or Crossfire work perfectly. Both are Gun artes, and Water and Earth-elemental respectively), then diversify quickly. Just so you're aware going forward if bosses mysteriously break out of combos in the future.
Also, because of the previous cutscene you'll always start this fight in Chromatus mode.
This is an example of Bind in action, by the way.
This is a REALLY dangerous move, Force Mine. Muzet will throw out four mines in each of the four corners around her from when she used it. Considering the power of the move, anyone stepping on those circles will probably get KO'd. They'll go away on their own after 5 or so seconds, though.
The camera will do a quick cut to an enemy and a blue ! will pop up when a boss goes into Over Limit. Muzet is the first enemy in the game who can use a Mystic Arte against you, Black Hole. If she has a red ! pop up over her head, she's casting Gravity Well, and if anyone on your team gets hit by that, she'll probably throw out Black Hole.
Okay, this move, Flame Ring, bites the big one when it comes to this boss, and is by far Muzet's most dangerous spell. Flame Ring has no range whatsoever (it just summons a ring of fire around the caster that will almost certainly cause the Burn status effect to anyone caught in it), and yet the AI. Does. Not. Get that. It will rush right in and just kill itself. On one of my attempts, 3 members of my party were killed by a single Flame Ring. That was one of those, "Alright, we'll try again next time" kind of things.
Again, if Muzet breaks out of your combo, it's not necessarily because you did anything wrong. She just teleports away from combos whenever she feels like. It makes this fight singularly unpleasant.
Muzet is a nightmare on Hard. She's tough, but completely beatable on Moderate. This is only the second fight I've changed the difficulty for, because for god's sake this fight is annoying on Hard and just wasn't worth the completely insubstantial bragging rights I would have for beating her on Hard for the internet.
Strangely enough, on a previous attempt, this fight was the first time I successfully stole with Leia on my "real" playthrough. You can nab a Porange from Muzet. Awesome.
I don't need your pity. You putrid, pathetic, pitiful human! Just die! Die! Die!
Of course, we're headed down the same road regardless. But if only to make things a modicum of right, we're going to help Milla before taking her sister's life.
Ludger and Muzet briefly face off, with Muzet gaining the upper hand after knocking Ludger's lance away.
Don't you dare interfere!
You... You made me do this.
No human can harm me.
I'm not any human. I'm your sister!
Yeah... That's quite enough of this.
It's done. That's the fourth...
Well well. What might this be?
So the fractured dimension is kaput?
Leia notices the shiny thing Ludger is holding. Looks like it could hold some value, though I've been wrong before.
Is that the Waymarker to Canaan?
Ugh... What just happened?
What the hell's that Milla doing in our dimension?!
I knew it.
What happened to Muzet?! Someone tell me what's going on, already!
She's dead, Jim. Very, very dead. And so is everyone else you know...
Huh? Then where are we right now?
Our world. It's different from yours.
Quit talking nonsense. What about my sister?! She's back to normal now, isn't she?
Ludger shakes his head, but one *could* make the case she's back to normal. Not existing is normal for something that shouldn't have existed in the first place, is probably what Bisley would tell her in our situation.
I'm afraid the Muzet you knew is gone.
Along with the rest of your world.
Well, I do know one thing...
You lied to me, damn it!
Quit it! Ludger was just doing his job!
His job?! What sort of job involves destroying an entire world?!
Ludger, are you okay? I guess you destroyed the catalyst, right?
So you all made it back, too.
Yeah, we're fine. Elize and Rowen are with me.
Mission accomplished, guys. Let's regroup.
Milla follows along, but she's not an active party member at the moment...
Ah, so the shiny thing has a name. Finding these things is going to be a major goal of the plot from here on out. But, it's our only way to reveal the location of Canaan, so we'd be fools not to look for them in the first place.
While we're here, there's a chest that has a very respectable 8500 gald in it, which you'd be a damn fool to pass up on. Of course, don't forget this kitty, either.
Update 11 alternate choices compilation
Update 10 / 11 victory compilation