The Let's Play Archive

Wild Arms Alter Code: F

by Krysmphoenix

Part 26: Rudy Got His Gun.

Last time we used Mariel to travel to the Elw Dimension (although I call it Elw Borea like the other games), met her older brother Vassim, the Elw who forged the Guardian Blade. He has agreed to forge another to integrate with Rudy to give him a new arm. To do that we need to find the Life and Evil Guardians, but the Life Guardian was in Elw Borea. Who knows where the Evil Guardian is...
Also, the Threat Level remains at Red.

They close ears, turn out eyes, so they forget fighting.
To find out where the Evil Guardian is, we return to Tarjon Village.

There is a house I missed where it looks like there are three elders sitting in the room. I'm not sure if they are actually the Elders of the village, but they might as well be in a room like this.
Flamel: The literature illustrates a Living Metal, the resulting product of alchemy. It was read by the Evil Guardian. This Guardian is said to live in secrecy, in search of the right human who could serve as his apprentice... There was a bond between us and the Evil Guardian, and we both shared a vast ancient knowledge... However, the Evil Guardian rejected our suggestion to transfer to the Elw Dimension once the Great War ended. He chose a life with humans in a decaying world.
De La Metalica huh? Knew that book was up to something. Looks like the Evil Guardian is there. But lets talk to the other two Elders.
Darres The Forest Prison is said to confine numerous monsters of different kinds of monsters from Filgaia. The monsters roam around the maze-like prison aimlessly, ready to attack anything in their way. I advise you to be well prepared. The Guardian of Life, Odoryuk, is also confined in the Forest Prison. We sincerely wish to rescue our Guardian from the prison... But, it is securely sealed with a spell, and there is no way for us to enter.
Don't worry, we already got your precious unicorn.
Lafleur We cannot trust the Holmcross... We know how vicious it can be... Perhaps your lack of such a memory allows you to welcome him as a member of your team. That is an advantage humans possess...the ability to forget their memories. The Holmcross was created to defend during the Great War 1,000 years ago, yet almost divided us... How can you trust the Holmcross boy to be a part of your team?
Rudy is still a Child of Filgaia.

Using the Hollywood Holy Wood Mound in Elw Borea will take us back to Filgaia. They both have the same intro text on both sides.

The Blood will inherit her strong will.
So time to return to the Abbey. This is basically the last time we have any reason to stay here for a prolonged period of time, so I'm just going ahead and linking to both versions of the song instead of alternating them.

Peleria is the girl with all the rumors around the Abbey, so we might as well see if she's got anything interesting.

Irena: I wonder why Curan Abbey became girls-only? Sigh... I long for hot sorcerers.
...don't know why I stopped in the kitchen.

Peleira: North of Curan Abbey is a terrifying thousand year old monster with nine tails!! It's trying to contaminate the lands of Filgaia with the poison it spreads!! Mmmmm, this story is hot, even for one of my gossipy tales!!
Since we didn't fight Mage Fox in the Tripillar, we can find it in the Killing Stone Cave which Peleira just directed us to. However, we can't reach it because it can only be reached by air...and we can't fly yet. Not to mention the enemies in there are tough, you're constantly taking damage, and Mage Fox is probably harder than the final boss of this game. So yeah. Not yet.

Right, let's finally read this.

De La Metalica posted:

This records how alchemy was practiced during the period of the Great War. Many ancient techniques are considered forbidden territory in today's world. For example, planting life into metal. If an unskilled sorcerer gained this book, the world's natural order could be overturned. For that reason, I sealed this book. If you would like to release the seal, obtain the key of knowledge. Then the essence of this magic book will be revealed...
Same old mysterious creepy book with forbidden knowledge that shouldn't be put in a public library...

Oh? What's this? This wasn't here before.

Fuck Up Count: 22! When you use different fonts, ACTUALLY CHECK TO MAKE SURE IT WORKS GOD DAMMIT!
...and what the hell was Trish doing reading a forbidden book anyway? Might as well bother her about it now.

Dammit this girl is going to unleash eldritch abominations upon us all! Why the hell am I collecting the Witch books for her again?
Trish: If you need to find the book now, I can tell you who borrowed it. It would be great if I could get the book back. It's long overdue. ... ... ... ... … ... Yes, this is the person's ID card. It was only supposed to be checked out for only one month... Here's his card. Please remind him to return it.
Obtained Event Item [ID Card]!
Alright, let's read this ID Card and see which girl stole our book full of forbidden magic.

...hoo boy. Looks like we're not quite done with Zepet just yet. The rabbit hole does deeper in this game. What was he doing at Curan Abbey anywa-- oh right, it used to be co-ed. Huh. Didn't know he was a Crest Sorcerer. Also, notice that's it's spelled Roughnight. I guess it's supposed to be Roughnight instead of Roughknight. I looked through the game script, and it looks like there are no matches for Roughknight. So I guess as long as it's unanimous and everyone on the staff agreed that it's Roughnight, this shouldn't count as a fuck up.

GOD DAMMIT GAME! I want you to succeed! Fuck Up Count: 23.
Also, Rudy's age is off by about a thousand years...and really? Cecilia's taller than him? Huh. Never noticed that.

At looks like I missed something. Something big.
If you see a sword that severs uncertainty and brings justice to evil, then shout my name in the heat of battle. I am the Guardian of Swords. My name is Equitess. All manner of fiends shall fall before me...
Medium [Sword Swipe] was obtained!

With a new Guardian in hand, it's time to find out just what secrets Zepet has been keeping from us. Using the ID Card on the sun thingie opens this door.

...hoo boy. Lots of books, and a strange machine. Machine first, then books.
Judging from the instruments and gauges on the cylinder drums, it must be from ancient times.
How...wonderfully vague. Although what amuses me is that they consider something like this to be from ancient times, when clearly to a normal person from Earth would consider something like that from the future. Oh Filgaia, never change.

Caution: Elw's Shrine: 1 posted:

The Elw's Shrine is a transport system made possible by transforming the body into energy form. However, as convenient as it sounds, it must be used with great caution. Considering the delicate nature of the device, overloading or transferring nonstandard objects must be avoided. In case of a malfunction, stop the operation immediately, and check the machine for defects.

Caution: Elw's Shrine: 2 posted:

The Elw's Shrine does not operate by electricity, but rather through a sort of spiritual tunnel. Because of its unique nature, it is not advised to use it with other devices for it creates a possibility of interference. The Elw's Shrine is equipped with adequate safety features, but it is not fool-proof. Thank you in advance for your cooperation in refraining from combining it with other transportation devices.
Define "other device" please? I'm a little concerned now. It sounds like the Elw Shrines might warp me to some scary place filled with randomly generated floors, incredibly tough monsters, an even tougher boss that I'm not sure is even possible to defeat, and the RNG staring at me the entire time.

The Decay of the World Tree posted:

It became apparent to everyone that the world was dying due to the war between the demons and humans. One day the Elw utilized their knowledge of alchemy to invent a device that would heal the world. It was called the "Yggdrasil System" named after a tree depicted in a myth in which the Yggdrasil Tree supported the world. The Yggdrasil System was supposed to work against the entropy of the world and to revive Filgaia... However, "Mother", leader of the demons, interrupted the operation and took control. "Mother" utilized the power of the "Yggdrasil System" to extend the demons lives. The monsters, which lurk throughout Filgaia are the result of the "Yggdrasil System".
The Yggdrasil System is another recurring feature of the Wild ARMs series, although it shifts slightly each time.

The Call of Merciless Moon posted:

Looking down on Filgaia from afar are the "Old Moon" and "New Moon". "New Moon" is a man-made celestial body also known as "Malduke". At the end of the fierce Great War, a few top ranking officials planned an escape route from Filgaia. Their new frontier was to be "Malduke". Malduke was equipped with weapons to strike the earth at any time with enough force to obliterate it. Ironically, Malduke had fallen into the hands of demons before any humans took control of it. Now known as the New Moon, the true history of Malduke entails a terrible strategy. it's in demon hands, but they aren't using it? ...why?

De La Metalica posted:

Despite being full of unknown and meaningless words, one can assume this text is about metals. Nonetheless, the demon literature is certainly not easy to decipher. If one wishes to comprehend the text and discover the power of demons, one would require some kind of a key.
Alright. This must be the real thing. Here we go! Freedom Key away!

I'm really not sure why Cecilia has a face. She's seen books float and turn pages before. Jack, on the other hand, this might be a new experience for him, so his face is justified.
The page turns as if it is alive. Instead of words, it displays a forbidden power. Consciousness slowly fades away, as some strange force opens the way into the unknown...

And then they get sucked into the book, which closes gently on the floor.

What's provided from the book? ...It depends on you.
--Music Selection: One, by Metallica
Welcome to De La Metalica, I hope you like glowing purple magic circles, because you're going to be staring at one. Constantly. You'll noticed I'm not using a Wild ARMs song here. The dungeon music here is one you're probably very familiar with already, and honestly this dungeon has got this song stuck in my head since I started this update, so now I'm putting you through it too. And to some degree, I feel like Rudy can sympathize with the lyrics to this song to a degree, although it'll make more sense later on.
And come on, the place is freaking called De La Metalica. I kinda have to. And yes I know it's Metallica with two L's.

You'll notice this place is rather strange. You can fall off the ledges into the abyss below, but because of the stone arches surrounding the path occasionally, you actually can't jump down. The only path is forward.
Also, because I can't find a better place to say it, I'll just put it here. De La Metalica has no random encounters. None.

You can jump down here though, and grab two chests. There's a gateway behind the camera that you can take. The chests give you a Crest Graph and the Repair Shop. So I guess you kinda do need to fall down sometime, even if you're not going forward.

The gateway of the lower area takes us back to this gateway in the first area. We didn't go forward, so we get sent back. This time let's try going forward without stopping.

...making a quick stop to nab some more loot. This potion berry and a PS Angel Quill 2. We're still going forward though, so it counts!

But it sends you back to the entrance of this room. This is normal. You just keep charging forward.

Well...I guess forward takes a left turn?


CHAAAAAAAARGE! Don't stop. Trust you feelings. Just keep plowing forward. No matter what.

Knowledge sounds good, Power sounds like a trap. Let's go to knowledge.

NOT THIS PUZZLE AGAIN! Seriously. In the original game this was the only puzzle that ever stumped me, because I was confused, and because the path forward was a distance away from the puzzle, I wasn't sure if I solved it right (having random battles in between didn't help) and it took me way longer than a puzzle should. I mostly remember playing it on the PSP in a place where I had no internet, so I had to solve it on my own. Normally I try to do that, but if a puzzle takes me more than a half hour, that's when it's become annoying.
But you're not here to see me whine about the original game, you're here to see me whine about this game. Functionally, the puzzle is pretty much the same. There are five bookcases on the left, and five chests on the right. I'm numbering the chests and books as One through Five, with One being the closest to North. First the books, starting with One, ending with Five.

Song of the Beginning posted:

Future of the world... Song of the beginning, song of life. Life is the future. Life is a great treasure. The future of the world, formed by many lives, seemed never-ending and nobody doubted it. Until 1000 years ago...

Future of the Three posted:

The future will be opened by life... But, the war that foreign lives caused, left a serious scar for the future. The Guardians and the planet weakened. The Elw couldn't stand the changes, and moved to a hidden village. Only the humans remain. However, humans closed their minds, and the future was no longer shining.

Two Worlds, Conflicted Lives posted:

The world is not alone. There is another world, foreign from ours. One we do not know... Encountering alien life created friction, and led to the war to end the future. And it was the violent, sad conflict of lives.

Four Great Guardians posted:

The Guardians support the powerless world... With the power they have left, they tried to do their duty. The Guardians are the essence of creation, sacrificing themselves to gather power, and using their body to save the world. Our world is the result of sacrifices. The people lost in battle, did they become a thread of hope for the future?

The Bell that Tolls at the End posted:

The future opened by death. However, because of conflict the world began falling into darkness. Injured, the world was close to death... did the bell ring to toll the end? None yet have heard the knell. If so, in the world's future, there must be some light. If future was closed by life, the key to open it must also be life. As long as life exists, the future will. Life is the future, and a treasure... If you are the right person, I will honor you with the magic key.
Right. First things first. If you've already gone through One, you might as well switch to For Whom the Bell Tolls right now. Because now that song is in my head. Second, each of the titles refer to a number, and these are the order we need to tackle the chests in.
The first book was the Beginning, so the first chest is first.
Second book was Three, so the second chest is third.
Third book was Two, so the third chest is second.
Fourth book was Four, so the fourth chest is fourth.
Fifth book was the End, so the fifth chest is fifth.

Now, the hard part...figuring out which chests we need to do what with. The only oddity with the chests is that the third chest is currently open, the rest are closed.
The first book is vague, and doesn't tell you what to do.
The second book mentions "will be opened by life" and "closed minds," which describes my mind right now. Also we need to close the third chest, since it's already open.
Third book is also vague, and doesn't tell you what to do.
Fourth book is also vague, and doesn't tell you what to do.
Fifth book mentions "closed by life" and "key to open," which makes it seem like we need to open the fifth chest.

I really have no idea if I just suck at this particular open/close puzzle, because I'm looking for the key words "Open" and "Close." It could be hinting at metaphorical closing and opening, but I really can't tell because I was frustrated with this puzzle the moment I learned they kept it in this game. You guys in the thread are welcome to try and figure out the true solution based on those hints, I just flat out can't. This puzzle has stumped me and will always stump me. To be honest, this is practically the only time a video game has ever made me admit flat out defeat. I've played roguelikes that have crushed my soul, and I've even beaten a handful but still can't beat most of the others. I plan on returning to those later. I may put the game down for months or years, but I do plan on returning to those. I may have lost today, but I will win one day. Not some day, but one day. This puzzle's the only time I've ever been forced to admit that I cannot win on my own, and I will never win without cheating.

TL;DR: the real answer is this:
Open the first chest.
Close the third chest.
Open the second chest. Then close it.
Open the fourth chest.
Open the fifth chest. Then close it. Then open the damn chest one more time.

The prize is this. The Savvy Key, which unlocks a bonus dungeon later on. So this puzzle's one saving grace is that it is 100% optional. Fuck it anyway. Fuck Up Count: 24. I get the impression that whoever translated those books were just paying attention to what the books said, and not the symbolic meaning behind it (as in the solution to the puzzle). I'll redact this if someone can prove that the books in the Japanese version were just as confusing, but my anger cannot be dissuaded.
Fuck. This. Stupid. Puzzle.

Start at 12 o'clock, keep skipping 3's, and toll 12 o'clock again.
Moving on...we have to backtrack to the two way passage next to the invisible walk way. Basically, now that we have "Knowledge," it's time to get "Power." The puzzle in this room is pretty simple. You're in a place with a giant spiral staircase with roman numerals on it. Since it says "for those resisting time" first, I took that to mean you have to go through this backwards to go back in time, but that was wrong. You actually need to go clockwise so you climb up the stairs. The second time you go through 12, you move on. A nice simple puzzle that only really takes two tries if you have an idea of what you need to do.

The next room has a weird block maze...whatever, let's just push these out of the way and plow through it--

Yeah. In order to progress, you have to put the blocks back exactly as you found them. The blocks are identical so I don't think you have to worry about putting them in out of order.

This puzzle also returns. I'll just transcribe the signs to save on screenshots. It says right off the bat we need to go through the red door. A wrong move I think will just take us back to the entrance of this room.

Room 2:

After gaining the Skill of will have the power of Demons. Which way will you humans proceed? The red gate, is the way of demons. The blue gate, is the way of humans. Choose the way you believe in...
Clearly the blue gate is our path.

Room 3:

Humans who visit the evil book 'De La Metalica'. What do you seek in this world? The red gate grants the power of Evil. The blue gate grants the magical power of life...
This one's a bit tricky, because if you want the Evil Guardian, you might think the correct door is red, but it's actually blue. We're here to save Rudy, after all.

Room 4:

Guardian Blade... Gaining unworthy power... What are you going to achieve? To open the future, take the red gate. To take away the future take the blue gate.

Room 5:

When people wield power they often speak of justice... But, what is justice? If justice brings power, take the red gate. If power is justice, take the blue gate.
So...where is the door for love being in my justice? Despite the two sounding identical, the correct path is red.

The game doesn't tell you what to do here, although all you have to pull out the Teardrop.

My trial is to test your knowledge. You have passed the trials that brought you this far. My secret evil ceremony, is now given to you. However, do not forget... Knowledge is power, not good or evil save for how your spirit guides it... With this ceremony... The care with when and how to use it is the real knowledge.
Obtained Medium [Hell Scream]!

Hmm, maybe the Knowledge or Wisdom Guardian would have been a better name for Duras than the Evil Guardian. Because here he just claims that although his power is don't have to use it for evil. Anyway, we get booted back to the Forgotten House.

One quick stop at a magic shop to pick up Gravitic Crush, and I remove Little Boom to get 1000 Degrees. Now Cecilia has all eight elemental spells at her disposal. This is very important, as you'll see why very shortly.

Also accidentally uncover Puzzle Box 16, which looks really weird and makes it a little hard to move around, but then again most of them do that so it balances out. This one gives Witch: Ep. 6 I'm missing 4 and 5 in-between; you have to find those at shops.

The encouraged heart always cure a scar.
Random jump cut back to Sinner's Studio...

: ... ... ... I pray that this time the sword I create will not be one of destruction, but rather one to protect the world. I shall recreate the Guardian Blade. In so doing, perhaps I can create hope for the future.

The implant surgery, which took over half a day, was a complete success. However... A week has passed since the surgery, and Rudy has yet to awaken...
Aww....we don't even get a dramatic forging sequence for the Guardian Blade? Laaaaaame.

There is something interesting about the way they handled this scene. Periodically the screen will fade to black, then fade back in, as if Rudy was gradually fading in and out of consciousness. There's just two problems with this. One: Rudy is currently in a coma so he can't be fading in and out. And two: when it fades back in, the conversation proceeds right where it left off, so you aren't getting bits and pieces of multiple're getting one with annoying fade in/outs.
: Brother Vassim?
: ... ... ... It was a flawless surgery. Mariel's herbal medicine is working well, and Rudy is recovering his strength. There shouldn't be anything wrong...
: Isn't he supposed to be up by now?
: Yes. If he's not awake yet, the only reason I can think of is that he doesn't want to be...
: Are you saying Rudy refuses to wake up?
: Rudy's been forced into facing the truth of who, or rather, what he is. This may be hard for him to accept. He might be hiding from this knowledge. He must decide on his own, whether or not this is something he can live with. If this is indeed the case, we'll just have to be patient and wait for him to awaken.
: Rudy... I wish I could talk to you...

After that, we get control of only Cecilia, so I take the chance to equip her with some PS to make her stand on her own. (I probably should have put Defense Up as well, but I didn't think to.)

To move on with the plot, just run up and talk to Rudy. You can wander around and talk to Jack, Hanpan or the others, but there really isn't much reason to since they pretty much just say the same things they said already.

Meanwhile, night settles on the Sinner's Studio...

And Cecilia just falls asleep at Rudy's bedside...
...wait a second? That's Vassim's bed, presumably. So where the hell are the other's sleeping?

: (...Or, am I still dreaming? No, I don't think so... This isn't my dream... I am in someone else's dream? )

Several kids run by ghost-Cecilia.
: Hurry, hurry! Over here!!
: (Rudy? I don't know this place... Am I inside Rudy's dream? )

: (That looks like Rudy, only much younger. This must be his childhood memory...? This is where Rudy ended up, after running away from reality... Am I trapped inside Rudy's dream?)
This is the reason I linked to One earlier. For those of you who don't know, One is based on a novel/movie called "Johnny Got His Gun" in which a young soldier in World War I when an explosion basically destroys his body. He can't move, he has no arms or legs. He can't see, can't hear, can't speak... basically suffers from "Locked-In Syndrome" in which a person is effectively paralyzed and has no senses, but is still conscious within their own mind.
In this scene, I like to believe that Rudy is suffering from Locked-In Syndrome, only one that has been voluntarily induced himself because he has not yet accepted the fact that he is a Holmcross; that he is a Demon. So he locks himself in his mind so he can't cause harm to those around him.

: Like Rudy?
: No! I will be a much stronger wanderer. And not with the Old Man, all by myself! All right! Let me show you what I can do. Don't get scared!!

: So you are saying that Rudy can't pick this up either? I guess we're even then.

Easy for Rudy. Don't even need the Gloves.
: Just kidding! Rudy's not like us. He's not one of us!!
: Didn't you know? Rudy has no mom or dad! Rudy's parents were monsters! I'm outta here!!
They run away, leaving Rudy all alone.

Cecilia see's Rudy walking up to her, tries to give him a hug, but then he phases right through.

Meanwhile, this is a familiar face.
: What's that? Why are you different from the other kids? Oh, I see... You're old enough to question that now...
: (This must be a memory of traveling with Old Man Zepet... This must be Rudy's comfort zone. In the memory of Old Man Zepet who protects him at all times... )

: You are the chosen one with the power which allows you to control the ARM. You don't understand? Oh, I'm sorry, Rudy... You understand how much it hurts when someone hits your head or when you fall, right? See, that is called a feeling. And you know your feelings are hurt when things are not going your way or when you are sad, right? And you understand why you don't wish that feeling upon anyone, right? Because you have a kind heart.

Cecilia stands behind like a stalker.
: See, being strong does not just refer to your physical strength. It refers to your inner strength as well...

Zepet's monologue to Rudy carries through a transition to his grave. I wonder if this was his last words to Rudy.
: (Rudy understands pain... ...I see it now... As a Holmcross, your creator bred a feeling of hurt into you to teach you about the power of heart.)

These four pictures yet again...

This is new.

Zeikfried walks up...

But Rudy runs in fear.

: (You're not a demon... You're one of us. ...You are Rudy Roughnight...)

And Cecilia still stalks him close behind. Interesting that now suddenly Zepet and Rudy are in color...
: You must have seen something really scary... Ha ha ha... Don't worry, Rudy, I can drive away all your sadness and hardship. I will always be here for you...
: (Have faith in yourself, Rudy. You need to wake up!)
: Rudy... Stay here with me. Do not listen to anyone else. Just listen to me...
: (Everyone's waiting for you, Rudy. Jack, Hanpan, Jane, Magdalen, the Captain, and Mariel... They're all waiting for you... And... I am waiting for you too... You're part of our team. You're one of us, remember? I understand that you would love to be with Old Man Zepet, but that is only a memory now! This is not where you are supposed to be!! Old Man Zepet is gone. I know it, and you know it too!!)

Fake Zepet stands up from the rocking chair, o glare at Cecilia.
: (What?! You're not Zepet?! )

Elizabeth: I'm Elizabeth, a Dream Demon. I feed on hearts, and this kid is mine.
: (So you are the one keeping Rudy from waking up!)
I prefer my version of self induced coma better. It's more dramatic...besides, where the hell did this dream demon come from anyway? I swear these things have a habit of showing up completely out of nowhere...
Elizabeth: Not gonna leave, huh? All right. If you want him back so bad, why don't you come and get him?

First, choice of music: This is a remix of the standard battle theme for Wild ARMs 3, although without the western guitars and whistling, it's hard to tell.
Second: Wooo! Catfight! Actually Elizabeth isn't a cat demon anymore, so I can't say that. They radically changed her fight. Instead of being a boss with high magic defense and lots of elemental resists that Cecilia would have a difficult time with, they turned her into a boss with weak physical attacks and a constantly shifting elemental weakness. At the end of every turn, she changes her weakness to something else. Unfortunately this makes it so that Rinse & Repeat won't work here to make the battle go faster.

You're better off using Newton's Wrath + Infinity to get a constant FP bonus that won't wear off over time to use Materials. I felt it a bit symbolic using Aqua Wisp here, Cecilia's first Material. You will need to heal throughout this fight, but Elizabeth is so weak that you only need to pop an Electrolytes or Potion Berry every once in a while. I suppose that's a good thing about that failed Rat Monkey grinding, at least I have a shit ton of Potion Berries. If you're really creative, you can use Life Flame, which costs 75% FP though, but it's free healing without an item or MP. I looked it up, and Live Horn has a Tech Constant of 5, and ignores RES and random variables, so Cecilia will always heal five times her Magic. Awesome.

Just keep it up, and Elizabeth becomes nothing more than a memory, 17600 EXP and 4500 Gella, and a Crest Graph. Yay more magic!

And now Rudy's whole world is collapsing around him. Nice job breaking it, Cecilia.
: Please, Rudy, you understand how to care for someone just as much as we do!!

...really? Now we're going back to this? This kinda came out of nowhere...
: (Why I disliked being treated as a noble. But, now I know... I know that
was just my way of distancing myself from everyone...)

: (If I want to be loved, I need to love someone first...)
...actually a pretty good revelation. I approve.

I am the Guardian of Love... I'm the light within a forgotten heart... Shrine Maiden of the Guardians... I have heard your prayers. ...Shrine Maiden... Why are you risking your life?
: At first, because I thought it was my duty as a Shrine Maiden. But now I know that is not so! I'm risking my life because I care for Filgaia, and everyone in Filgaia... And I care for Rudy...
Shrine Maiden, you understand love... If you wish for my hand to protect what you care for, then, in the name of love, call my name...
Obtained Medium [Love Charm]!

: Did all of that happen in my dream?
She then notices that the bed is empty.
: Rudy? Rudy!

Rudy's back, and he's got a new arm...and a new gauntlet thingie? That looks heavy...they must have made too much with the Guardian Blade. No... Rudy is the Guardian Blade now.

: What?! Rudy, you saw me in your dream? We must have had the same dream... … ... ... Do you remember me from the dream? Never mind, never mind! Do not try to remember! I just thought I'd ask...

: So... You really don't remember? ... ... ... It would make me so happy if I knew you remembered...
... Nope. This game is going to keep drawing out Cecilia's crush on Rudy.

At least it's not Alhazad killing the mood this time.
: I told you I heard something!
: Rudy! Man, were we worried about you! You all right?

Vassim and Mariel walk in as well.

: I have entrusted you with the Guardian Blade as your left arm. My question is... How do you intend to use it?
We get three choices here, affecting what kind of upgrade we get. And the descriptions for each one are painfully inaccurate, that I'm going to call Fuck Up 25 for all three as a whole. Again, if it turns out it's not Agetec's fault and it was this bad in the original, I'll redact it again.

: I will use it to ensure a bright future.
Tutorial: Twice as much damage can be inflicted on your opponent once the Force 'Lock-On-Plus' is gained. Also you can neutralize an opponent's physical attacks and any nullification power used against the ARM.
Not quite. Lock-On increases ATT by 25%. Lock-On-Plus increases it by 75% instead, and negates the chance that the ARM malfunctions against certain enemies. This one looks like the obviously powerful one, and would be a nice compliment to Gatling Raid.

: I will use it to achieve world peace.
Tutorial: Once 'Lock-On-Destroy' is gained, you will have a conventional Lock-On as well as Critical effect on every shot. The 'Critical' will defeat small opponents instantly, but it will not be effective against bosses or any nullified physical attack.
Again, horrible description. Lock-On-Destroy has a very high chance of inducing Blow Out! which is a special way Rudy and Jane can instantly kill enemies with a critical hit. Naturally it doesn't work against bosses, so it's more powerful in random battles.

: I will eradicate every threat.
Tutorial: With 'Lock-On-Active,' you will have the conventional Lock-On with twice the normal effect, and automatic reload. Also, you can counter attack 100% of the time, on every turn.
So much wrong with this one! Okay, the "twice the normal effect" actually means Rudy's Reaction doubles with Lock-On-Active. The automatic reload means after his action, he will always reload his ARM, whether he used a Shot or Cartridge. And of course, 100% chance of counter attack. At first glance, this looks like the weakest, but it's the best.
Remember how I said it reloads the ARM after using Lock-On-Active? He will reload after using Lock-On-Active + Gatling Raid, so you don't need to waste a turn defending for Rudy to reload. As well, the act of reloading gives Rudy a rather decent amount of FP (and a lot more with Newton's Wrath). Because he auto-reloads, Gatling Raid is also now compatible with Rinse & Repeat. We have just quadrupled Rudy's damage output with Gatling Raid.

: I wish to protect the world. (Continue with the game) || I do not wish to protect the world (Re-pick your upgrade) || Blood for the Blood Guardian! Bullets for the Bullet Throne!
: I haven't seen Rudy in such high spirits for a long time.
: We can't afford to let our guard down. I'm worried about the demons... They haven't tried anything in a long time. I've a bad feeling about this...
: They're bound to do something soon.
: I am going with them to Filgaia.
: But why? You could stay here with me. You'd be safe here...
: While you have your battles, I also have mine. I need to plant flowers in the wasteland.
: To Filgaia!
: Yes! We need to tell everyone how well Rudy is doing!
Let's call it a wrap for the update.

End of update status:
: Level 38
--He's back!
--And with an awesome new ability.
: Level 40 → 41
--All current Fast Draw's mastered.
: Level 39 → 40
--Learned Gravitic Crush and 1000 Degrees
--Forgot Little Boom
Gella: 34135
Migrant Seals: 10
Ex. File Keys: 4/25
Fuck-Ups: 25

Version Differences:
The annoying book puzzle is made optional. De La Metalica has no random encounters...for now.
Rudy IS the Guardian Blade
Elizabeth isn't a catgirl anymore. She's just some kind of gothic lolita now...which is probably just as bad.
Lock-On gets an awesome upgrade of your choice.

A Saying A Day
: (August 13th) Today's saying is that where there is light, there is shadow. If somebody wins, someone else loses. At the end of the day, it all balances out, the positives and the negatives make zero. Some people say this even means that when somebody picks a flower, somebody else will plant one. I disagree with those people, just to keep the balance.
: (August 14th) Today's saying is that up and down are equal. This saying is used often to teach math. It doesn't really make sense in any other context.
: (August 15th) Today's saying is, 'dress smartly where people can't see.' Being stylish is not for others, but for ourselves to enjoy. Of course, I followed the saying today. Do you want to know where? Okey, you don't want to know? I'll tell you anyway. My socks are marvelous.
: (August 16th) Today's saying is that Crest scholars don't know about the crests. People were saying that the crest scholars know only theories. They don't know practical crests. Various movements began, and Curan Abbey was built. It is dedicated to the practical crest. Sometimes people take insults and use them to inspire change.
: (August 17th) Today's saying is, 'love a lot, for life is short.' If you don't enjoy life when you can, you will regret it later, the saying says. But if you fall in love with the wrong person you might regret that too. I'm not sure I agree with this saying.
: (August 18th) Today's saying is that at the foot of the beacon, it is dark. A beacon looks very bright, so we approach, thinking that it is better than where we are now. But, when we reach it, it is dark and cold. Cute sea animals are playing quietly, though. Actually, it is kind of fun although it's dark.
: (August 19th) Today's saying is, 'union is strength.' This means that a group is strong. But, this can be taken as, 'seek a big tree if you need shelter,' which is wrong. Too many cooks spoil the broth. I don't believe in strength in numbers. Not so much because I think it's wrong, but because I am alone as a lover of sayings.

Guardian Roll Call!

Duras Drum has only appeared in Wild ARMs, as the Illusion or Evil Guardian, although his Rune in the original game was the Hades rune. Calling him the Hades Guardian probably would have worked a lot better than the Evil Guardian. Yes, I'm still angry about that.

His Medium is Hell Scream and his Material is Primitive Dark, which creates giant red and black explosions of darkness which fill the screen, cuts the audio for a second, then snaps back with the enemies taking damage. Spooky. Beyond that, standard 50% Darkness-elemental Material.

Equites(s) is the Sword Guardian, also appearing in Wild ARMs 5 as the summon linked to the Sword Medium. Equitess looks a lot different in this game, taking the appearance of a beast with a sword for a head. Equites is also the name of Raquel's ultimate weapon in Wild ARMs 4, and I think may be someone's ultimate weapon in Wild ARMs XF.

Her (going with Wild ARMs 5 here) Medium is Sword Swipe, and her Material is Genocide Edge, costing 75% FP. It has a chance to instantly kill non-boss enemies based on a weird formula. The formula is (Cecilia's Level) + 10*(Number of weak elements) - 5*(Number of resisted/nulled/absorbed elements) = % chance of instant kill. I think individual enemies will have their own resistances to instant kill attacks as well, although I don't know if it affects Genocide Edge.

Raftina is the Love Guardian Lord, appearing in Wild ARMs 2 and 3 as well. She usually looks like a goddess or an angel, and is probably the most human looking Guardian in the entire series.

Her Medium is Love Charm, and her Material is Affection Embrace, costing 100% FP. Affection Embrace is unique in that it is only one of three ways to restore MP in battle. Mariel had one with Magic Carrot, Emma has the other with Download, but it only restores her MP. Love Charm only restores Cecilia's MP as well, and it heals (Cecilia's Lv)% of MP every use.

Next Time:

But the Captain came back, the very next day. Oh the Captain came back, they thought he was a goner but the Captain came back, he just couldn't stay awaaaaaaaaay.....