The Let's Play Archive

Wild Arms Alter Code: F

by Krysmphoenix

Part 22: Literally destroying the world.

Last time we learned that despite defeating Mother, the Quarter Knights are still at it, and they created an artificial and evil Teardrop known as the Darkness Tear, which they are using to boost their own powers. We encountered Lady Harken in the Dragon Shrine, where she slew the Ocean Guardian Lucadia. However, now we can reach the Outer Sea, and find the Fallen Sanctuary.

...right after I pick up a new spell. This is Permanence Infinity, which causes all temporary buffs to last till the end of combat. Although I really like to damage race bosses, this will be essential for taking on the bosses that simply just have too much HP to damage race. Not to mention my damage race strategy isn't working anymore.

Harvey: On top of all that, you guys brought Mariel, and her herbal care. I owe you guys my life. Here. I keep a secret stash in my locked cupboard. Please accept this token of my gratitude.
Obtained [Duplicator!]
There is no real notification that this happens, but it's awesome anyway. Never say no to a free Duplicator. Although I have to question the use of keeping it in a locked cupboard...what if you lose the key to the cupboard? You could use a Duplicator to get in it...but the Duplicator is locked inside...

Also, all the shops have a new item now: the Teleport Gem. This item acts as a one-time warp to any city you've visited before. It really cuts down on the travel time. But I can already skip battles in the Outer Sea thanks to my Migrant Level, why would I need these?

Oh right, the monsters out here are rough and high Migrant Level will not protect you against Ambushes or worse, Danger. This Scylla is particularly nasty, because they use Maelstrom to hit the entire party.

I really have not shown the world map for a long time, so here you go. Where I'm at right now is Roesetta Town. To the far south is Devil's Playground, and the red dot to the west is the Fallen Sanctuary. The Northeast continent is the Adlehyde Continent, the Northwest continent is Arctica, with Court Seim just to it's south. The Southeast continent is the Baskar region. I'd like to point out that this world map has a stretch of terrain that extends from the Northeast corner to the Southwest corner. I can't sail through that anywhere. Makes navigating the oceans a bit tricky, and you have to constantly remind yourself that you wrap around.
...Man, what I would give for a good sphere-based world map in an RPG. I think it's a little sad that the only game I've played that had planets actually sphere shaped was Spore. The rest are flat maps that break the space time continuum.

Earl Immoral, he is Mr. Strangelove.

Ooookay... Anyway, this is Devil's Playground, the optional arena for this game.

It's divided into three Leagues, each with a turn limit for the entire thing. I don't mind the multiple leagues, but the turn limit is annoying. I prefer the original game's methods. Regardless, I'm not even going to waste my money attempting the Novice League quite yet, we'll get pound into the dust.

This is what I came here for. This makes eight.

Amanda: But the only thing I worship is Count Pegucchi.
I've never understood the nun fetish, because all the nuns I know are wrinkly old women. And I actually know a few nuns. That just makes this more creepy. Leaving now.

This is Puzzle Box #10, a two star box. It's on the same island as Devil's Playground. Make sure you do not miss this box and make sure you complete it. MAKE SURE YOU COMPLETE IT.

This makes Alter Parts appear in the chests that sometimes appear after battle. I think it even increases the odds of making those chests appear as well. Because all I'm giving Rudy is bullets, he needs these Alter Parts to keep up with Jack for random encounters.
...what the hell am I saying? I'm investing them all in Gatling Raid.

My harsh, but purifying power shall drive back the forces of calamity and chaos. For I am Aru Sulato, the Guardian of Ice. A blizzard of unimaginable cruelty I shall be to the disciples of evil.
Obtained Medium [Ice Crystal]!

Also like in the original game, there are Mediums scattered throughout the area that you can search for. Ice Crystal is this game's 50% FP Ice Elemental material.

Ha! Awesome. This is Hamado Hamedo (I renamed it after noticing the typo) just gives them the damage instead. That's what you get for attacking Cecilia, bitch!

Let me stand guard over Filgaia as the impregnable shield against falling stars. Though my light shines but faintly, I, Rigdobrite, shall answer should you convince me of your need...
Obtained Medium [Shining Star]!

This is Shining Star...probably Cecilia's best Material. Why? Because it only costs 25% FP and acts like an Extension to her spells, causing them to hit entire Groups with any of her spells. (It's useless for spells like WaveMotionBeam which already hit groups.) So that Rinse & Repeat? It goes on everyone now. I transfer over FP Advance from Jack to Cecilia so she can take advantage of this.

Two things I'd like to point out. First, the obvious, say hello to Alter Code: F's probably most infamous glitch. Randomly disappearing map terrain. This usually happens when you pick up an item on the world map...and if you're stuck in it you can't move. At all. Your only hope is to use a Teleport Orb to get out. I'm lucky this one didn't happen near me.
Second, Shooting Star is found where Photosphere used to be. That's why Asgard is here. Unfortunately you can only use him in the areas between Giant's Cradle and Court Seim.

Michael: He knew that it would be in a cabin in the woods to the southeast. I will never forgive the demons for this...
We have to talk to this kid in Court Seim to learn the location of the Forgotten House.

Forgotten House is through the mountains so you need Outer Sea access to reach it. On the way, I stumble on Puzzle Box 12, which gives a LVL Apple.

He left the hermitage to tell a truth to his grandson.

Curious... The building is abandoned, and there are a few animals we can talk to.
White Dove: My grandma said that the owner of this house used to be the ARM Meister. He was living with his son and was quite the traveler.
Lazy Dove: I'm too old to find my own food. It's such a chore. When the old man was living here, he would feed me some bread crumbs. Those were good days.

Well, let's read it.

Diary posted:

During my study of the artifacts of Ahnen Erbe, I ventured into the ruins past what used to be securely sealed. There I encountered a small life-form. Whether it was fate or simple curiosity, I do not know... But, I decided to show the small being to the outside world. As a researcher and explorer, I felt a bond with the life-form. I took its hand into mine and led it out of the ruins.
The chaos of war tempted us into using our alchemy skills for the purpose of manipulating the small life-form. The result of our forbidden knowledge lies before me now. The small life I had found in the ruins had been transformed into the ARM. I am overwhelmed by its transformation. Because the war had made us take desperate measures, I felt we had ignored the value of life by creating the ARM.
Through the years, the body we created grew just as a human does. I was stunned to realize that the creation felt physical pain and heartache. I was aware that this life-form had been designed to be a weapon. But I was compelled to wonder how a weapon could feel pain. I was perplexed by this discovery, but it motivated me to take action. If it was possible for the life-form to feel pain, couldn't it also be kind? I decided to teach the life-form the meaning of kindness.
If the weapon learns to be kind, will we still label it as a weapon? The answer remains to be seen. Based on my prediction, we will not wait long for the answer. I have started treating the life-form not was a weapon but as a member of my family. I will raise it as my grandson, so I suppose it needs a name. The name should contain meanings of both kindness and strength. That name shall be...'re joking, right? You're leaving out the name? Without telling us the name, we'll never be able to figure out what this life-form is and who it is referring to! This life-form could be anyone, it could be Rudy, Emma, Mariel, Zed, Zeikfried...
Someone in this game is a cylon.
No, I'm not going to spoil what is very heavily hinted like some other LPers. They are smart and they can figure it out own their own.

Anyway, the chest below gives us the Giant's Ocarina. The door with the giant Sun on it is locked...and we can't get through unless we have an 'identification object.'. Clearly the mystery to this building is not over quite yet. Maybe the life-form is sealed in there?

Alright, we can now summon Asgard anywhere! ...that isn't forest. Nor can he go through forests. But that's alright, because we can and all we need him for is to cross one shallow little river that I'm sure we could have just forded through with a pack of oxen and be just fine anyway.

And I stumble on yet another Puzzle Box. This is the 11th one. This one you have to make the blocks fall properly so it causes a chain reaction, but it's still a two star so it's pretty easy, and only gives us 5 Nectars

Fallen Sanctuary is just across this river.

Love, Courage, and Hope are stoned, only Desire is alive.

Not the kind of stoned, mind you. The falling down the stairs while carrying a cockatrice corpse kind of stoned. Anyway, welcome to the Fallen Sanctuary. The entire dungeon takes place outside, unlike the original game. It's also very open with lots of paths that loop around. Not to the degree that it has a practical design, but enough that it makes this dungeon really stand out. Also, I hate the trees here, as they constantly block the camera.

These boys again. They aren't that bad this time though. They still have Bright Blast, and they picked up Harmful Wave (light damage, chance of poison) and Reflect, but oddly enough they are easier because they dropped the ability to guard. Now whenever they use their (@[]@) attack, it does low damage because no one is guarding. Oh, and they'll randomly skip turns, although that didn't happen to me.

Hidden in a little cave here is the tool you need to get through this place because each room has an upper level and a lower level. With it came a Crest Graph and a Gimel Coin.. Hmm...maybe I should invest my Crest Graphs in getting all the elemental spells.

Jack obtained Fast Draw [Blade Pulse]!

Blade Pulse is a generally more powerful version of Strike Buddy. It only hits one target on it's own, but with Accelerator it hits ALL enemies. Supposedly it's also good against flying enemies, though I don't know about that. Still, against a single target with shit for Evasion, Strike Buddy will murder.

This is about all the Wind Staff does. Also, I just realized that all of Cecilia's staves are based on Virginia's Crests from Wild ARMs 3. They only added Magic Staff to allow animal communication, and just tweaked how the rest work. Not that I"m complaining too much, it works for puzzle solving.

...wait a second. The person who controls three minds and is entrusted with the Guardian's spirit...are they referring to the player here? What is with this sign?

Single target Blade Pulse in action, it's not that much. With Accelerator, the tornado is red and you get a birds-eye view of it hitting everyone. Oh, did I mention this is 20 MP? I need to get some grinding in. Anyway, these enemies are Ronway, and they like to jump...a lot. But they really are not that dangerous, only with a weak physical attack and two special attacks that only deal status effects (helpless and confusion). Not any worthwhile loot either.

Another one...I think this one makes even less sense.

I spend a Duplicator in this next treasure room, to get a PS Defense Up 3, which is actually worth it because anything above level 2 in this game is hard to find. Also a Gella Card and a Revive Fruit.

Well, I don't see any blue lights here. I'll keep an eye out for them...don't think I have any tools that work with blue lights though. Maybe the Wind Staff will help.

The best I got here are those orange VIT gems. I guess it could be red if you're a little colorblind. And what happened to it following Hope? I'm confused. apparently I need to use Radar on some crystals, but I've been doing that the entire time and haven't found anything. There aren't any crystals here except for the standard orange and white gems.

Yup, this puzzle again! This time the clues are even more cryptic, although random placing should let you figure out what you're supposed to do since you don't need to blow up any statues this time. I've already placed the Blue Courage statue in the East. They don't really describe it well, but you need to put Gold Hope to the North, so that Red Love can "follow" in the South. Then, you need to stand in the West to lower the gate ahead.

Before I mention that Booermang is here, these three...gargoyle things are each standing on a pillar like the one you can see that doesn't have a gargoyle.

Boomerang pops in on one of the gargoyles.
: How did you find us here?
: Luceid led us.

Luceid then appears on the fourth pillar. She is the fourth Guardian Lord after all. I love this bit of symbolism.
: If that is what you want. I will fight you and then annihilate the sorry Guardian who supports this world!!
: A fight to the finish! It's time to settle this!!

First thing I do is put Soft on everyone. Lady Harken showed that I really can't damage race bosses like I have been before, because that won't work at all. I need to use real strategy for once.

Killing Luceid was not part of that strategy because...

If Luceid is down, when she would normally act, Boomerang will use Flame of Desire. So if you feel like it, you can just take down Luceid every turn and she'll never act. This isn't that bad of a strategy because...

She has her own Material. This is Black Renegade, which the game actually explains how it works, oddly enough. Normally it doesn't do that to enemy attacks. Dark Renegade works dealing non-elemental damage to everyone (in this case, a lot) and deals more damage based on how many elemental break PS you have equipped. I can't find the formula, but I think each level you have in elemental breaks adds 0.1 to Luceid's TC of the attack. So I guess you could consider this attack Anti-Elemental?

Boomerangs also got a few new moves, although I get really REALLY lucky this time as he tries to hit Jack, and misses. Three times in a row. One new move is Boomerang Dynamic, which was also in the original game. It just straight up does a lot of damage, while this move you're seeing here is Shadow Stitch which in addition to dealing damage will also possibly cancel your action. That is, if Jack didn't use Accelerator first.

Cecilia uses Shining Star on Electrolytes quite a bit this battle just to keep everyone alive. Luceid will use Black Renegade once every third turn (killing her does not reset her internal counter, although killing her will make her skip using this) but I managed to defeat Boomerang before she could use it again. Rudy's falling back on the damage department again, because he needs to reload after every Gatling Raid. Fortunately, this ensures he has enough FP to use it again with Newton's Wrath.
: It's just as I suspected. You guys are surviving day to day and steadily making great progress. But when will you match my power? I allow you a future; it's my gift to you. But, it's also a gift for my own delight. You should cherish this gift and be prepared to sharpen your fangs... The next time we meet will be the last.
Boomerang drops 8500 EXP and 6000 Gella. Luceid drops 400 and 200, and we only killed her once. Cecilia's still lagging a bit in the EXP department, but I'm not too worried now. The next few bosses will be easier so I can toss a Lucky Card in there, and she's going to dominate random battles with Shining Star.

Aww...Boomerang is just lonely and want's someone to play with...
Ahem, anyway, after the battle, the party looks a little tired, though still in fighting shape. I would have appreciated if Boomerang at least showed some sign of fatigue to represent the fact that we just straight up kicked his ass. At least it looks like a draw right now.

: Letting you go? It's more like a death sentence. I give up... I will not exterminate the Guardian...
: It's about time!!
: West of Photosphere, on a deserted island, Alhazad has one of his labs. He must be researching weapons to battle the Guardians.
: Why are you telling us about it?
: Such a battle is not my style. It does not matter to me if you disrupt Alhazad's research... Besides, if you fight Alhazad, it will sharpen and build your strength. You need more time on the anvil.
Those two teleport away...god dammit, why do they always get to teleport!? I wanna teleport without spending 1000 Gella a pop!
: West of Photosphere... I bet horrible research is being conducted...

Evil isn't what has stolen our power, the weakness of heart is what has weakened our power. But, if you believe that our power will return some day... Hold the body of my will...
Obtained Event Item [Dragon Idol]
The three gargoyles now have shining blue orbs that we can take. They'll always give the messages in this order (so you'll always get this one first) but you'll get the Idols in whatever order you pick them up. An oddity, but it works.
If love, courage, and hope filled the minds of all humans, the world would never die. Remember, if the world wasted away, it would be because these disappeared from the minds of those who live here. If you believe these qualities will return to the minds of all humanity, then you believe in my will...
Obtained Event Item [Lion Idol]
This is the middle statue, the one Boomerang landed on. Why Courage?
Shrine maiden and warriors, if the spark of your mind shines we will regain our power... Don't be frightened of love, don't misunderstand courage, and don't lose sight of hope. In your hearts, if you believe in yourself you will soon hold my power... When love shines, Raftina will answer... When courage shines, Justine will answer... When hope shines, Zephyr will answer...
Obtained Event Item [Goddess Idol]
After all of that, we get an Ark Scepter to teleport out.

Just showing where we are again. There are lots of little islands with either a tiny bit of loot or a Puzzle Box, but I really have not explored very many of them because they mostly aren't worth it and it's a bit of a hassle right now. For now though, our next task lies ahead of us: the Demon's Lab.

End of update status:
: Level 31 → 32
--ATK Bonus: 46 (Lv. 4)
--Bullets: 9 (Lv. 6)
--Hoarding 1 Alter Part.
: Level 31 → 32
--Obtained Blade Pulse
--All other Fast Draws mastered.
: Level 30 → 32
--Obatined Ice Crystal and Shining Star
--Obtained Infinity
--Hoarding 1 Crest Graph
Gella: 16951
Migrant Seals: 8
Ex. File Keys: 3/25
Fuck-Ups: 18

Version Differences:
Three arena leagues, like in Wild ARMs 3.
There is a lot more to the Forgotten House than it looks like.
Shining Star is amazing.
You get Ice Crystal much later in the game.

A Saying A Day
: (July 30th) Today's saying is that a cat's burp smells like fish. This is what Dan Dairam said, seeing many men who compare girls to cats. Cat's may be cute, but they still burp. And when they do, it doesn't smell cute. It smells like fish. If you just see only a favorable side, a Guardian will get angry with you. So be careful, the saying says.

Glazius posted:

Actually, Dan Dairam heard there was somebody who was collecting sayings, so he decided to troll the hell out of her.
: (July 31st) Today's saying is, 'don't knock on a stone bridge before you cross it.' In olden days, a stone bridge was a symbol of sturdiness, and if you say to knock on it, you're made fun of. But now, at various ruins, lots of fragile stone bridges are found. If they were hit, they'd collapse. It's dangerous to tap on a bridge, both in olden days and nowadays. Some things stay true, even if the reasons for them change.
: (August 1st) Today's saying is, 'do as Noble Red does in Noble Red's castle.' So, if you are asked to sing with a tone-deaf man, sing off-key with him. You may know it's off-key, but it shows respect for your host.
: (August 2nd) Today's saying is that poverty will keep friends away. If I think of reasons for this, I can come up with 20 of them instantly. What about you? If you can come up more reasons, you must know what poverty is, or you are simply a bad guy............

Next Time:

I'm sending out an S.O.S.

Guardian Roll Call:

Alu Sulato is the Ice/Snow Guardian, and also appears in Wild ARMs 2. He appears to be a man made completely out of snow and ice...and that's about it. Normally you get him after breaking the first Seal for Mother, but here you get him much later.

His Material is Icicle End and costs 50% FP like all other Elemental Materials. It basically creates HUGE spikes of ice that randomly pop out of the ground, then crumble out of the way for more spikes to rise up. Also note that Jane and Emma are there. I already said Emma was part of the final 6 party members, and a while ago said that Jane was as well. I recorded this using my almost 100% complete save from a while back. I edited them out the past several Guardian Roll Calls...I'm going not going to worry about it now.

Rigdobrite is the Star Guardian, and also appears in Wild ARMS 2. This fellow...just looks freaky. Rigdobrite has always appeared as a secret Guardian, meaning you just randomly find him on the ground or in a crater...which I think Photosphere was supposed to be but it didn't really show it very well.

His Material is Star Prism, and costs 25% FP. He flies through space, and shoots a blue laser at Cecilia, who then receives it and promptly casts a spell which affects an entire group or enemies or the active party. Awesome.