Part 36: The Man Who RemembersPart XXXVI: The Man Who Remembers
Welcome to Part 2 of overtime. We begin in Marksburg. I coyly noted that we may not be done with character chapters in this game, and this is why we begin in the bridge between worlds. For the EX chapter to open up, you have to finish all of Jude and Milla's chapters, and have entered Canaan. Which, of course, means you can turn around right after entering Canaan and start this. It's a nice story and you get a cool arte for Jude at the end of it. Let's roll...
I take it you guys have something to do with it.
Ivar, what happened with Spirius?
Exactly what I expected. I got canned.
Sorry to hear that.
So I've decided to return to Nia Khera. I missed communing with all the critters there anyway.
Well, I mean, as far as standing in our way and being in the way of the party, either in this game or Xillia 1, you're pretty shit at this whole "Agent" thing. But, no need to be a jerk about it, and at some level you do have to feel bad for him.
Save your pity. This is humiliating enough already. Jude, I swear I'm going to figure out my mission in life. That's the only difference between you and me. You've already discovered your purpose.
Until you discover yours, would you watch over Nia Khera for me?
Of course I will, Lady Milla. We're family.
He seems to be in a better place.
Yeah. I'm happy for him.
Yes? Oh, dear. I understand. I will formulate a plan to deal with this at once.
What is it?
Fort Gandala's golems have gone berserk. Several of them are advancing on Sharilton as we speak.
The golems are headed toward Sharilton?
Driselle's in danger!
Why'd they go berserk?
The fort was struck by a massive tornado.
A tornado? Another side effect of nixing the schism, I take it?
Most likely. Spirit climes have become unstable throughout Rieze Maxia.
They had deployed the golems hoping to divert the tornado's course. But the artes controlling those monster machines may have been disrupted by the sudden magnetic shifts of the tornado.
Even the new golem model?
I'm afraid so. Its engineers apparently saw the tornado as an opportunity to test its abilities.
And its ability-limited mechanisms?
Primary and back-up governors were installed. Unfortunately, the spirit channeler controlling those governors was killed by the tornado.
So chances are they're no longer operational. Hmm... Milla, I want to stop them. I could use your help.
Ludger, we should lend a hand. Golems are no run-of-the-mill monsters.
Well, jumping into action right away will increase Gaius and Rowen's affections, but hey, Ludger hasn't thrown down with a golem, and the Xillia cast (sans Muzet / Gaius) have. Might as well see what they have to say about them.
They're synthetic monsters developed by the Rashugal military. They can only function within a particular spirit clime, yet they are indestructible while inside it.
So the only way to defeat the golems is by altering the clime around them using spirit boosters.
Ludger, Jude, Milla, and Rowen will go to Sharilton to inform Driselle.
Understood. We'll establish a local command center and a last line of defense.
Everyone else come with me to the Talys Highroad. We'll split up to scout the golems' progress.
I'll lead the way.
I'll round up the boosters we need.
Everyone runs off except the Driselle Four...
We'd better hurry.
And hurry we did...
There's no time for that!
Another fade... Not too many of those left to go.
Rogue golems are rampaging toward Sharilton?
We're preparing to intercept them. As for you, my lady...
Order the self-defense force and coalition of merchants to blockade the Talys Highroad immediately. Tell them... Tell them it's becasue of tornado activity. No need to start a panic. Send a message to all merchant groups in the vicinity to return to the city. Explain that House Sharil will compensate them for any damage.
The soldiers run off... Driselle's certainly come a long way as Lady of Sharil. Incidentally, I mistook who her deceased relative, Clive, was. I said he was Driselle's husband, but I misremembered that whole bit from the first game. Clive was her brother.
Splendidly done, Lady Driselle.
I couldn't agree more.
You honor me, King Gaius.
What's the status of the golems?
They've split in three groups: left, right, and center.
We've secured three boosters, so we can send out three teams.
The central group had a golem we've never seen before.
It's a new model.
A new model?
Yes. It's an enhanced golem capable of manipulating all four elements: earth, water, fire and wind. Milla may be the only one of us capable of meeting that threat, thanks to her ability to command the Four Great Spirits.
Are you serious?!
Wasn't the development of these sorts of weapons banned under the ceasefire agreement?
I proposed developing them in secret.
I gave my approval.
Why would you do that?
Ludger's a jaded man, but he's learned a few things from this long, long experience (9 months, as of this writing...). Gotta be realistic here, and Rowen and Gaius will appreciate you keeping the politics in mind.
Elympios is more than a litlte mightier. They're packin' military airships and spyrix weaponry.
I suppose Rieze Maxia must make a show of strength if it's to negotiate on equal footing.
I'm not one to believe might makes right.
But those who repudiate power often become its victims.
Wielding power you can't control can make you its victim, too!
That... I cannot deny. Perhaps today's incident will serve as a cautionary tale.
Regardless, we're gonna have an international incident on our hands if we don't stop them before things get serious.
I have devised a plan of action that takes into account everyone's respective combat abilities. Milla, I'd like you in the central team to battle the new golem model. Ludger, Jude, and myself will use a booster to support you.
Alvin, Elize, and Leia will make up the left team.
Can I count on you to handle the booster?
Wouldn't be the first time!
Gaius, I'd like you and Muzet to deal with the golems on the right wing.
Of course. This is my responsibility.
Nothing the two of us can't handle.
Driselle, prepare an evacuation plan for the city. Odds are on in a hundred it will come to that, but you should be ready.
I will do what you ask. But knowing you guys, I'd lay the odds at one in a million.
Let's move out...
Hey, Jude? It's me.
Ivar? What's going on?
The local critters found something interesting on the Nia Khera Hallowmont.
Sorry, Ivar, we've got an emergency on our hands right now.
What's going on?
Take a guess...
Lady Milla is going up against a multi-elemental golem?! So this is destiny... I understand, Jude. To the Talys HIghroad!
Huh? What do you understand?
Ivar hangs up...
We don't have time. We better get moving.
Probably unimportant... But it's Ivar, so who knows. What I do know is that visibility is not great. Let us proceed with caution.
Y'know, there might be a point in the game where the Golem could *possibly* be dangerous, but after defeating all the EX Monsters, yeah... The Golem can shift elemental strengths / vulnerabilities, blah blah blah. After a few moments...
He'll throw out this change and become completely invulnerable. Might be a problem...
What? Now there's two new golems?
Ugh, bloody hell! I should ahve known they would build more than one!
What'll we do?
Yes! Do something!
This is becoming a thing for Ivar... Dropping in from a wyvern is also how he showed up one time in Xillia 1.
I'm here to save the day!
It can be! It's Maxwell.
You have one of those booster-majigs. That's all you need to make it, right?
A Maxwell spyrite!
But would you really be able to control a Maxwell spyrite?
Ludger lands back near the party...
Heck if I know. But hey, that's Jude's job, right? I'll buy you some time!
Sure I can. But the message doesn't seem to make all that much sense. "Muster they will and prove thyself, for it shall serve as the contract that binds us."
Prove yourself? I wonder what we're supposed to do.
Well...Jude's the cautious type, and maybe we should be, too.
No, I'm sure I can handle it. I know that I can make the spyrite work for us!
A future for both
So we're going back into it. But now, we have a new toy to play with: Jude's Maxwell arte. Maxwell is basically the exact same thing as Muzet / Milla's Elemental Shot, but it has one gimmick with it. To use it, you need to have Jude's Special skill activated.
To use it, fire Maxwell as Jude while in Over Limit, and hold X. Don't do it after a Linked Arte, or you'll throw out Jude's Final Fury. As a note, you can launch Mystic Artes without being Linked to someone, but there's really no point in activating Mystic Artes through this method.
Jude's Mystic Arte will be replaced by Maxwell's old chestnut, Meteor Storm. It is super worth it? Not particularly, actually. Most of your most powerful enemies will be in 4-1 fights, or variations thereof. So Meteor Swarm's advantage, that it hits every enemy on the field, is negated in that case. As usual, you're in general better off when you focus as much firepower as you can on a single target. Anyway, it's nice-looking, at least.
In any case, the Golems just have an added step, hit them with Maxwell or Elemental Shot to open them up for Power Combos. Otherwise, they'll be invulnerable to everything.They'll stay briefly vulnerable after one of those artes hits them, but you'll know it when you start doing 0 damage again. Anyway, it's still an enormously simple fight, made easier by the fact the damage you were able to do against the first Golem carries over into this one.
As you might guess, I am *enormously* overleveled for this fight, and thus, I am bereft of interesting things to say about it. Well, strictly speaking, at the level I was when I recorded this video, I wasn't overleveled. I was using my alternate playthrough to record this, since the first recording did...not end well. However, my Tales weapons are more than making up for any level deficits with these guys. I will say the Elementals both enemies drop are pretty handy as accessories.
The spyrite is too much for him!
I'm on it! We'll wrangle this thing together!
No... It's not a matter of controlling it... We need to get in sync... We need to...find a way...to communicate...
Ah... Interesting. So you do understand. Very well. Then prove yourself to me!
What do you mean by "prove yourself"?
"Muster thy will and prove thyself, for it shall serve as the contract that binds us."
It's the same message as the spirit code...
"It's called the "Hymn of Proof". It's supposed to be about longing to see someone."
Well, I mean make up your own mind how much Song 4 U is about longing to see someone. Personally speaking, I didn't know they took "If It's For You" from the song itself, but hey, not like the first time the Tales series has done something like that.
"Milla Kresnik had a wonderful singing voice. It's said she sang with such passion that even Lord Maxwell fell under her spell."
Choosing L1 is definitely the correct one, because it increases various characters' affections (one of the last times in the game you can raise affection via choice), whereas R1 drags the scene out a bit longer, but... I mean, we can't give them all the answers, can we?
The Hymn of Proof?
Could that even be possible?
It is entirely possible. Some speculate that singing started out as a form of prayer to higher powers.
Maxwell, did you seek "proof" the very first time you were summoned by a human?
The Milla Kresnik who first summoned Maxewll... She was known as the singing handmaid.
Then perhaps we should sign the Hymn of Proof passed down to her descendants... Jude.
Jude and Milla start humming it...
Is it the "proof" that you sought after?
*shakes head* No. It is nothing more than a song. Just a song that was composed on the spot by a young girl named Milla Kresnik. And the words?
I suppose you could attribute the loss to humanity's hubris. But at the same time, the melody has persisted through the ages. I take that as a measure of sincerity.
What is the song about?
I ask you the same question. Tell me, Jude Mathis. What words would you choose for this song?
*thinks* Lyrics fit for both humans and spirits.
Heh heh heh. How modest. That girl, MIlla Kresnik... Unlike you, she was far more forceful. She sang about how she wanted to see me, and talk to me, and how she'd yank out my beard if I didn't show up.
What a painful thought.
It was like a little ditty for children! There was nothing fancy or elegant about it at all. But it did have a line about how she'd give me all her mana if I came out to see her... In that sense, you could say it was like a love song as well.
I'm just as determined as she was. I can assure you I will make my version of hte song come true.
Jude's like "Little too much information there...
It seems that unusual human beings such as yourself, somehow show up every few hundred years or so. And to make things interesting, a spirit who believes in him or her appears as well.
Maxwell, at the end of the day, what is the "proof"?
You should know that better than anyone else, Maxwell.
It is the hearts of men.
You did it, Jude! You managed to wield a Great Spirit spyrite.
This is all thanks to you, Ludger.
Ahem. And to me, of course!
I see... All this itme, I already had my "proof" without even knowing it. Congrats, Jude. You've finally done it.
No. We have only taken the first step.
Gaius and the others should be all finished by now. Let's go ahead and make our way back to Lady Driselle's.
Guess that's settled... There's a skit that pops up just after this scene for your consideration, then we're headed back to Driselle's for the last scene of the EX Chapter. I guess Ivar and Balan got their own rides.
The Trouble With Spyrites
There was never a doubt in my mind.
Forgive me for worrying you so, my lady. The concern in your eyes is obvious.
Everything's going to be okay, Driselle!
We smashed those golems to smithereens!
So you even subdued the new model. Very good work.
Jude and Ludger persuaded the spyrite of Maxwell to help.
Are you serious?
One more fade to black...
Wow, Jude, that's amazing!
And quite a scoop, huh?
Well, sure, but that's not why I'm so happy.
Who knew that song would prove to be the key to spyrites.
Well, in Maxwell's case, at least. Spirits are more like humans than we think. I bet each spirit requires its own "proof" to gain its trust.
Spyrites sound like such a hassle.
Well, they are! Look how much trouble Jude's had with 'em.
You don't deserve to use spyrites with that attitude!
Take it back, Ludger!
I suppose this leaves Origin's Trial as our final obstacle.
If we want to protect this world and its people...then it's time we make our way to the Land of Canaan!
I assume chronologically, this took place sometime after Julius' death, but this is kinda undermined by what you have to do to make this bonus chapter show up. See, the way everyone's talking, and by what Bisley is doing right now, we don't have a moment to lose, and indeed, when we do show up in the final area of Canaan, Bisley's on the ropes. Xillia 2 has nasty case of the RPG Time Bubble, where the plot sets up the final battle as a point of crisis. If we don't move our ass, the world comes to an end. Lots of games that are not RPGs also do this, come to think of it.
However, I'm going to go off on a limb and say Xenosaga I has perhaps the most egregious case I know of this, staying in-genre. The final dungeon of the game is a space station that is about to crash into a planet, which you've been trying to reach all the game. The point of the final dungeon is to basically sabotage the space station and not, you know, have it crash into the planet. But, of course, once you arrive, you are free to bugger off and do whatever you want. It's pretty silly when you think about it.
But enough silliness, we've got the bonus dungeon to start going through. When you get here, you'll get a skit to introduce things. First off, let's begin by going to that purple hexagon. Let's take a look at our options...
We seem to be missing a couple... That's because of the first of the Darkness' gimmicks. You cannot bring any character who is below level 8 affection with you into the dungeon. HOWEVER, you can bring them along if said character below level 8 affection has a Bond of Shadow equipped. You'll recall we got one of those at the end of the game, before we started the post-game. Don't try to cheat the game, however. If you enter a character with a Bond of Shadow, taking it off any point will cause that character to be ejected from the dungeon, and you being permanently down a buddy. I would not advise doing that.
At this point, any characters who are not at level 8 affection or close to it are probably not going to get there, just because there are very few affection choices left. So unless you want to use Linked Artes to very slowly grind affection, Friendship Potions are your best bet for getting over the line. In any case, you'll find out quickly why you need to make choices.
After you've selected your party, you'll get a message that says "Amidst illusion and shadow, go forth and strive to return the light. Shouldst thou accept this task and be victorious, thine efforts shall be duly rewarded. Thy task is as such: shalt touch one of the three floating lights. Second, thou shalt touch all of the three floating lights. Third, thou shalt touch the lights in the following order: lantern, candle, torch."
Then you'll get dumped into this hub area. Now, there are 9 different doors in this hub area, one representing each of the characters you can bring here (however, as usual, Ludger is mandatory and the door directly ahead of him is always open). The doors are only open if the character it corresponds to is in the party. For example, Ludger is in the middle, Gaius is in the SW, Elize is on the lower east platform, Jude is in the top right, Milla in the top left. Basically, each character's "partner" character (like Gaius for Muzet, Alvin for Leia, etc.) will be on the opposite side of the hub area.
Now, what did it mean when it talked about floating lights? Well...
In the hub areas, and the two stages (I'll get to those), there are three floating objects: a red lantern, a blue candle, and a green torch. If you get those three objects in order, you'll get this message...
"Obtained 1 Gold DIce! Obtained 1 Silver Dice!" Or maybe just 6 Ancient Bells. The Ancient Bells are an Illusionary Darkness-only currency used to buy some...interesting skins from a special shop that's only open in the Darkness. Now, as long as you collect even one floating light, there's a chance of getting Gold and Silver Die, but that chance is significantly increased by getting all 3 lights in-order. Let's talk about the first stage...
But first, since I didn't record any of it, Gold and Silver Die are used for Poker. A Silver Die, while it's active, will guarantee you draw at least one Joker. A Gold Die, will guarantee you're dealt at least a Flush (sometimes it's a Straight Flush). Can make Poker grinding a lot less tedious, all in the name of getting more Friendship Potions and Royal Feasts. Why you want to get your buddies up to max affection...next time.
The first stage type: the Desert. In the Desert, the game gives you a certain enemy to kill, and a certain amount of time to do it in. Time elapses almost everywhere, except when viewing the map if you need a breather or a pause for whatever reason. If you do not defeat the required number of the target enemies, you fail and get kicked out of the dungeon, back to the starting area before you chose your party. This also happens if you get a Game Over at any point. The dungeon just tells you to piss off and come back when you're stronger, or whatever. In addition, you do have to finish the final battle by the time limit. Starting a battle with 30 seconds on the clock and taking a minute to finish it will cause you to fail.
Now, also in the Desert, the enemy you are told to kill does not go by their name in the Bestiary. You're supposed to infer what the game is referring to. For example...
The Shadow Devil, being targeted here, is the "Wicked Centaur". Simple enough. Also, speaking of battles, all of the enemies drop the rarest crafting materials, the kind of materials needed for the best of the best equipment. Trouble is, even with the 2x item drop multiplier from the Grade Shop, the drop rate is extremely low. You'll want to have all of your major combat members equipped with Hunter's Monocles throughout, which gives the character who delivers the killing blow a +30% chance of getting their victim's item(s). Just remember to switch to something more useful during boss battles.
Oh, and before each dive into the Darkness, it would be wise to double up on Spicy Chicken Rolls (+80% EXP after a battle), and Creamy Beef Bowls (+50% Gald and EXP after a fight). Might as well maximize your gains. If you've defeated all the EX Monsters, though, you're not going to be getting many levels here, though. Level 200 is the max level, and it takes an absurd amount of time to get anyone on the team to that milestone.
Now then, once you've chosen a path and completed the first stage, you'll fight your first boss. Every single mid-boss is a character related to that character. So, Nachtigal on Rowen's path makes perfect sense. The only characters who are exceptions are Jude and Milla. On Jude's path, Milla is the mid-boss, and on Milla's path, the reverse.
So, you can tell how fun it was to record this dungeon as me. Here's the full mid-boss line-up. Jude: Milla, Milla: Jude, Alvin: Presa, Elize: Jiao, Rowen: Nachtigal, Leia: Agria, Gaius: Wingul, Muzet: Maxwell, Ludger: Julius. Also, after each, the path character will speak about the shadow character fought, and those comments will be on the tail end of each battle video. There were recording problems with both Shadow Jude and Milla, so I am afraid those videos are lost. You honestly aren't missing a whole bunch.
Without exception, the mid-bosses are significantly easier than the final boss on each path...
Notice Alvin's Squall Shot is only doing 1 damage. This is another of Darkness' gimmicks: unless a character is linked with another, all of their attacks will only do 1 damage. It's all about teamwork...
Once you've defeated the mid-boss, you'll get thrown into a second hub area. This hub area has different enemies for materials, and also a chance to choose a different path. Since the goal of Illusionary Darkness is to defeat every single boss, I would advise keeping things simple and staying on the same path. So off we go...
Platforms! The goal here is to pass through 3 illuminated hexagons to activate the final warp that'll take you to the boss. Now, the illuminated platforms are randomized, and you'll frequently need to change columns. You can do so by jumping down from platforms, and places you can jump are indicated by those little horns on the side of a hex. It's pretty tedious, but hey. This is just one of those tedious bonus dungeons the Tales series is oh-so-well known for. I will say, though, in terms of design, Nifelheim from Symphonia is the worst. That dungeon *sucked*. Abyss' bonus dungeon was just boring, but Nifelheim was offensively bad, only barely redeemed by a nice final final boss in the PS2 / 3 versions of the game.
Now Phantasia, the big bonus dungeon of the game, The Depths of Moria, was actually really good. Sure it was dark as shit and had some really annoying encounters, but it had actually had a hidden boss of its own...and you know what? It was honestly not that great of a dungeon, but it had some neat treasures and stuff, and it wasn't just balls-out tedious like Illusionary Darkness is. Best I can say about this place is, the final secret boss is pretty cool, and directly leads into the Big Bad Final Final Boss of Tales of Xillia 2. That fight is really cool, actually, and *almost* worth the time wasted here.
Oh yeah, and when it comes to gathering the three floating lights, I honestly wouldn't even bother trying to do it on platform levels. Just wastes too much time remembering the order + getting to the appropriate lights + where the lights even are.
And the final boss for each path? Why, a mirror fight against that character. Now, as you might expect, they are enormously more powerful than anyone in your party, and are a *huge* threat. Some more-so than others, but Rowen is definitely one of the most dangerous, just because of all the status effects he throws out. Anything that can cut down on status effects, like Laurels (one can be found in a treasure chest in a hub area, they cancel all negative status effects), you're going to want to use here. Anything that reduces damage is basically useless, since these shadows do a *ton* of damage anyway, and a few thousand damage reduced is probably not going to make a huge difference. Confusion is an especially nasty status effect to get hit with.
Anyway, here's the line-up! Jude, Milla, Alvin, Elize, Rowen, Leia, Gaius, Muzet, Ludger.
If I had to choose a top 3, I'd probably go Milla, Gaius, and Muzet, not necessarily in that order. Milla gets top-billing because she can activate Undine and heal a ton of damage, and naturally, it's always right when a single combo could probably destroy her... Anyway, you have Shadow Milla to thank for my most recent recording disaster. Also, none of these fights are pushovers. Like with Siennabronc EX, there is absolutely no playing around with this bunch. Also, in the last update, I had a screenshot where Gaius was mocking someone (it was one of the phantom cat screenshots). Shadow Milla was who he was referring to (screenshot was taken shortly after I finished that boss). Again, I don't know if I'd agree with him on that one.
As for Shadow Muzet, again, she's difficult because she's a spellcaster, meaning she can throw around status effects like crazy, and you can't combo her. The reason I was throwing so many Elemental Hymns at her is because of the Stone possibility. It actually worked out decently well, but it's a real hard fight. The first Shadow [Player Character] defeated gives you a skit when you return to the starting area.
As a final note, you do not refight the mini-bosses if you go down the same path, for material grinding or whatever (different monsters will appear in certain paths), but you do refight the shadows. However, winning or losing, as long as you've won before, doesn't matter after this. Because if you win, and you have more shadow bosses to defeat, you'll just get thrown out of the dungeon again, as you march ever-closer to the truth behind the darkness. If you lose, you'll be down the experience and Gald for winning, but the same happens.
So let's switch gears again until that's done! When I arrived in the Xian Du coliseum, I got a short skit (that becomes available in the post-game) where the party talked about a new rank being established at the coliseum, but the way this rank is unlocked is a bit...unclear, let's say.
How do you unlock the different ranks at the Coliseum?
Novice: Automatically unlocked upon reaching Xian Du.
Advanced: Finish Chapter 12, and complete Novice Tag three times.
Elite: Finish the game, and complete Advanced Tag three times.
You must leave Xian Du to get a skit which will make the Elite ranks available.
Note that the characters used are irrelevant; any characters can be used, including just the same ones repeatedly.
Novice: Complete Novice Tag, and beat the following Elite Monsters:
Scorpactus, Veywind Eye, Heavy Claw, Greater Demon, Radiant Horn, Moralzamm, Graddic Claw, Bluetaur
Advanced: Finish Chapter 12, unlock Novice Party, and beat the following Elite Monsters:
Ghastly Stump, Arrow Folzam, Veywind Stinger, Krudis Eye, Exoplasma, Hammerzamm, Wind Racer, Dark Teagle
Elite: Finish the game, unlock Advanced Party, and beat every Elite Monster except Siennabronc.
You must leave Xian Du to get a skit which will make the Elite ranks available.
Yeah, good luck figuring that out without internet. And that's not even all the Coliseum has to offer!
Anyway, the reason you want to do this is for the highest-tier of weapons and armor to be available at customization, AND, do you remember that weird old guy in the Nala Lava Tubes / Felgana Mine who was saying he doesn't want to do business with anyone who hadn't proved themselves in the coliseum? The Elite Tag Battle is what he was referring to. The difference between the two is Tag Battle is for any two characters of your choosing, and Party Battle is for a regular 4-member party to do battle with all the Elite Monsters, and a few friends. But don't worry, they're all significantly weaker than they used to be. This is yet another grind, but hey, that's the name of the post-game. I've got a video for an Elite Tag Battle and an Elite Party Battle. Good times.
The final battle will always be against a party member + important NPC. Once again, GameFAQs to the rescue. The following spoiler is really something you'll want to avoid, if you want to keep the identity of the cameo characters secret until next update. This for those who know the truth.
GameFAQs, again posted:
Ludger: Wingul + Random Party Member + Bisley (Beat Wingul within 6 minutes)
Jude/Leia: Nachtigal + Random Party Member + Cless
Elize/Rowen: Celsius + Random Party Member + Mint
Milla/Muzet: Agria + Random Party Member + Rutee
Gaius/Alvin: Jiao + Random Party Member + Stan
It all depends on who you chose as your first party member.
For the Ludger hidden boss, unless you're getting lucky with enemies bunching together, it's pretty hard to get this without using the Devil's Arms. Actually, let's talk about those, while we're in the neighborhood.
In many Tales games, starting with Symphonia, there is a special class of weapon that you get through small sidequests or hidden bosses, or some combination thereof. In Symphonia and Abyss (and Xillia 1), they are called the Devil's Arms, in Vesperia, the Fell Arms, but the concept is always the same. Defeating more and more enemies as a specific character will increase the power of these weapons. In Symphonia, for example, the game has a hidden counter that keeps track of the number of enemies a certain character has killed. Their Devil's Arms stats are powered up in proportion to their kill count. But to prevent this from being too broken a mechanic, you usually had to do something to "unlock" their power, namely defeating a super boss that, if they aren't the hardest fight in the game, they're not too far from the border.
Well, Xillia 2 does have the Devil Arms, and you get them by completing an Elite Tag Battle run with that character in the party. They all have names like Forzex, The Destroyer, or Brandung, the Howling or likewise. I forget a lot of them. Anyway, aside from that there's no other hoops you have to jump through to unleash their true power. The one catch with them? As long as a character is using them, they take 2x the damage from enemy attacks, and that can kill you real fast. But likewise, when a character has maxed out on kills, their P. and A. ATKs are at 9999, more than twice the power of the Tales weapons. As far as LPing goes? I'll probably never use them. They're just too broken after three playthroughs of kills and their power going up so damn much. Just wouldn't be any fun, y'know?
Now, Ludger? He gets a set of weapons called the Alliance Arms. He'll get the Alliance Guns and Hammer from the mailbox, after paying off a certain amount of money, and the Alliance Swords (they're called something else I also can't recall at the moment) from the coliseum. Now, the power of these weapons goes up with the number of Linked Artes Ludger participates in. Other than that, no negative effects. As you might expect, this effect is also very broken after a few playthoughs. Will also not be using these, for previously stated reasons. Just, y'know, for the record.
One final note: wrapping up an ancient sidequest. Once you've acquired all 100 Kitties, talk to the batty cat lady again.
Actually, I think some of these cats might not even be mine, but oh well. No need to get catty at a time like this! And as a special treat, I'll give you some hints about where you can find three great treasures! The first is located "underneath where sits he who rules the snowbound keep, sealed by Maxwell's hand." The second is located "beyond the most narrow crevice under the land where a magnificent frog dwells." The third is located "at the foot of a shining tree by a river that runs between daytime and nighttime."
She doesn't say anything special once you've gotten all three, so let's grab all of them, shall we?
First, "Snowbound keep" and "sits he who rules", should be your key phrases for the first item. Obviously referring to Gaius' throne itself. Forget which Kitty Item you get here. There's a hat, a pin, and something else. Not really important.
For the second clue, "Magnificent frog" is the key word here. We've encountered a lot of "narrow crevices" on this ridiculous journey of ours, but only one location connects one of those with a marvelous frog: the Tatalian Abyss. This one is a corner of B3F, so feel free to nab it by crawling through and scooping it up.
And finally, the one common thread for all the clues in the third riddle? "Shining tree", "river", and "through daytime and nighttime"? Only Brauner Highroad, just outside of Fennmont, fits all three. The areas closer to Gandala are in the daytime, nearer to Fennmont is night. Brauner does have a river, as seen in the distance, and it also has shining trees. The one in front of Ludger holds the final Kitty Item.
And that's a wrap for this busy update. Next time, another action-packed update as we finish Illusionary Darkness, the bonus boss at the Xialen Woods Temple, and the True Final Boss of Tales of Xillia 2, in the final regular update!
Update 36 alternate scene compilation
Final victory compilation video
Of course, a ton of end-battle quotes I got but didn't record or forgot I had, ton more I couldn't get because I didn't have the DLC costumes...it goes on. Ultimately, you have to draw a line somewhere, y'know? Especially when you're near the end of a long LP and you're kinda wanting it to be over. The Tag Battle and Skit videos have added victory quotes I wanted to bring along for the ride appended at the end of the them.