Part 34: Lil' Adventures VPhew, that was a lot of story nonsense that just happened. It's been a long time since we got a chance to stop and check in with all the Final Fantasy people we've met along the way. We actually haven't done a Lil' Update since Chapter 16.
The reason for that is because the Intervention Quests basically evaporated around that time. This quest is the only new one to open up since the start of Chapter 17, but that's not enough to fill a Lil' Update.
Chapter 21 has solved that issue in a major way. 14 new Intervention Quests are now available plus the one that's been sitting around since Tometown. This is gonna take some time to work our way through.
Lil' Update 5 Highlights - In One Ear and Out the Other
Oh! Wasting no time, I see. You're going down! Hrrraaah!
Wha--! You lunatic!
Sorry! I thought you were a Mirage. Last I heard, there was a real dangerous one prowling the area.
You're the only danger here. Do you always lunge at strangers without thinking?
I said I'm sorry! So! Let's roll. Uh, where you headed?
Hm? You say that as though you actually believe I'll let you come along with me.
Well, of course I am. A dangerous Mirage is on the loose in this forest. It's not safe to be wandering around by yourself!
What a hero. You know, I'm perfectly capable of handl--
So! It's settled! I'm Snow. And you?
Oh lord, I've known people like this. Just popping up out of nowhere and following you without taking the hint that you really don't want them to.
...Celes. You know, it's rude to in--
Celes, huh! I like it! Okay, off we go!
Well, according to the villagers, the thing's supposed to be some kind of colossal beast. Somebody's got to step up and do something about it.
And you let them talk you into hunting it? Ugh...
BAAAAAARTZ! Show yourself!
What was that?!
I have you now! Bartz! ...Huh?
What have we here. So you're that Mirage everyone's talking about. Oh yeah. You look like trouble to me.
Well, you're done scaring the villagers! I'm putting you down right now!
Nice try! You'll need more than an extreme makeover to pull the wool over Gilgamesh's eyes! Oh, I see. I'll bet it was you that set that vicious monster on me before!
Any last words?!
Listen to you. It's like you're having separate conversations! Hey! Giglamesh, right? Do you think that monster that attacked you could have been the...
I have awaited this day a hundred years! It's over, Bartz!
Your reign of terror... is over!
Uh... First of all Lann, you need to pay better attention to people's names. Second of all, Giglamesh-- has he even noticed that he's fighting against us now?
I don't think the-so.
Poor Celes. She's surrounded by idiots on all sides...
So we're fighting Gilgamesh again. Not really much of a difference from the last time we fought him. He has all the same tricks as before, including Haste and Mightiest of Swords.
Except that Excalibur can hit way harder than in the story fight.
During the fight, I try out Behemonster. We've had him for a while but I haven't shown off this XL Mirage yet.
One of Behemonster's main abilities is Meteor Counterstance. It puts Behemonster in a counter state where he'll retaliate against attacks with the Meteor spell (at AP cost, which is 5).
It's a good ability if you put the time into Behemonster to properly level him. Behemonster also has great physical attack potential.
That's what happens to Mirages that misbehave! The villagers want you gone, so tough luck!
Huh? Sorry? Villagers?
Juuust STOP! Listen, Snow!
Huh?! What are you doing?! Don't tell me you're on his side!
Would you just settle down?! Listen when people talk to you! Hey, buffoon!
Earlier you mentioned that some vicious monster attacked you, right? What did the thing look like?
Um... I suppose that I would describe it as a colossal beast. But it met a quick end at the hands of Gilgamesh and his mighty blade!
Snow, do you see now? That dangerous Mirage is gone. And you, Gilgamesh... This isn't the person you've been looking for. His name's Snow. Not Bartz.
Whoooa! So Bartz is someone else?! I just knew that something was off!
Awww, that was my bad, Gargle-musher! Man! You totally had me fooled there.
Ha ha ha! I like your style! You may not be Bartz, but you're just as worthy an opponent!
I had the wrong guy, but you put up a good fight! I like your style!
Do they even hear each other?
Bros, you say? Bros... I like the sound of that!
Maaan, the two of us must have been destined to go head-to-head today. Do you think we, like, knew each other in some past life?
Nooo... Not that I remember.
Then, have you ever been a frog?
Nooo... Not that I remember.
They deserve each other.
Good stuff. I don't even have commentary for that one. That was just... something else.
Anyway, from this point on the Intervention Quests will mostly have to do with everyone dealing with the Cogna threat. These all get dumped in your lap at once during Chapter 21. I don't think any of them are in a chronological order, so we'll just start from the top and work our way down.
Lil' Update 5 Highlights - Mobile Suit Gundam Chocobo
Oh! Well, hello there, Bartz. What's the matter?
It's Boko! He's been choco-napped! It's gotta be Hyperion! He and his gang are up to no good again.
Noooo! Boko! Boko is a good boy. We need to go save him.
Oh, yes, well... So tell me! How was Boko choco-napped again?
Well, ya see, I was kind of taking a nap, so I'm not entirely sure how it all went down. But suddenly, I could hear Boko kwehing. He sounded unmistakably hostile, just like when we faced that black chocobo.
Wow. But I'm quite certain I would have sensed it if Hyperion was still around. Which can only mean it must have been something else...
Bartz, Boko's in big trouble! We have to go in now!
Huh? What?! Chocolatte, how do you know that he-- Hey! Wait up!
The hell is that thing?
What in the... Oh! Master!
What the?! This chocobo can talk?!
[???]: Huh? What're you talkin' about?
Choco-boco-leeen-- agh, no. Don't you see, Bartz? It's being translated by--
Huh? Hey, just hold on a sec. Isn't that the same chick that was sitting on your head? Whoa! That thing was alive?!
Of course it is. You've seen it move, haven't you? I mean, it sits on Chocolatte's head, but you must have noticed it breathing and shifting around up there during the Hyperion thing.
[???]: Hey, pay attention.
Uh, yes, well... You could say it's alive, buuut... It's more like I live with it, so...
What does that mean, exactly? Is it like a parasite?
Oh, right. The big shiny chocobo on wheels.
[???]: Hmm. This chocobo seems to be pretty intelligent. Makes you wonder why he bothers carin' so much about his human owner. He oughta be completely ashamed of himself. And I had such hopes that he'd be a prime specimen when we mecha chocobos populate this world.
Mecha Chocobo is voiced by Melissa Fahn in English and Misaki Kuno in Japanese.
Wait, hold on, mecha chocobos? Populate this world?
[???]: For far too long now, this world's chocobos have nuzzled up to you humans. Isn't that the most ridiculous thing you've ever heard?
Hold on a second... now that I have a closer look... is... is there a Moogle piloting that thing?
Isn't that normal? Humans and chocobos are-- I mean, take me and Boko. We've always survived by helping each other out.
[???]: Hmph. What you call "helping each other" I call "subjugation." Everyone knows chocobos are smarter than humans. It's time for Grymoire's chocobos to welcome the Cogna and become this world's dominant species!
What are you talking about?! Boko would never want something like that!
That's right! And the same is true for all the chocobos out there!
Me? I'm not lowering anything! The chocobos of this world are already perfectly happy without your help.
[???]: You think being enslaved by humans... is happiness? What a heaping load of phoenix down.
I mean, he has a point. Chocobos are the horses of the Final Fantasy universe. People use them for transportation, as cargo haulers, presumably as food, and sometimes we eugenically inbreed them while force feeding them growth hormones and then racing them for sport.
Not that I've done that last part of course. Just a general example.
[???]: I've heard enough. Boko here is comin' along with us. You made a big mistake spyin' on us! Now you're gonna pay the ultimate price!
It's not spying when you go and blab it all over the place!
Tama, you should make yourself a robot too! Made of genuine tamamantium alloy!
No, I think you should the-be the robot.
Good idea. If we did that, then we could dismantle him whenever he gets out of line. Right?
Dude, you're scaring me!
Mecha Chocobo is not hard at all. On top of crippling Thunder and Fire weaknesses, it also has relatively low HP. One Thundara from Optimus shaves off 3700 HP.
Its physical attacks only dish out about 500 damage, which is nothing at this stage.
The only thing to watch out for if you somehow are having trouble is that Mecha Chocobo will cast Berserk on itself when its HP gets low. Berserk locks it into physical attacks, but it boosts the damage dealt. Mecha Chocobo also has an ability that boosts speed when in Berserk state.
None of that really matter though, since it will likely be knocked out shortly after trying to pull that. This quest really feels like one that was supposed to show up way earlier. It's very easy and you only get like 25k EXP, which isn't much at this point.
Boko! You okay, buddy? I missed you too.
Ugh... I can't believe they wanted to rule the world with Cogna-fied chocobos! What a nightmare! That no-good Mecha Chocobo!
There was clearly a Moogle inside that Mecha Chocobo. Why the hell was a Moogle trying to make the Chocobos a master race?
Yeah. I guess that explains Hyperion. I betcha that he must've been Cognified by those scoundrels too.
I can't even imagine... Aaah! Oh no, yes I can!
Ah! Oh, uh, let's just say... Oh, hey, you know what! I've really got to get back to the shop!
Do you realize what this means?! I may have just found the one chocobo that can speak our language... Huh? ...Hey! Wait for me, Chocolatte!
We get a Mecha Chocobo memento from this, which means that Foozles has an upgrade to finally spend that SP on.
While we're checking out Mirages, here's a few new ones that Biggs and Eyevan have gotten access to recently.
War Machine (and Death Machine) are references to Warmech from FFI. Warmech was a strong enemy that only had a 3 in 64 chance of spawning in one specific area of Flying Fortress.
It had an ability called Nuke (or NUCLEAR originally) that dealt massive non-elemental damage to everyone, routinely got preemptive strikes on your party, and had stats that rivaled the final boss.
It was also supposed to regenerate a bit of HP every turn, but regeneration was bugged in the NES version of FFI.
War Machine's color scheme is based on Warmech's colors from FFI's remakes, while Death Machine's color scheme is based on Warmech's original NES appearance.
That damage doesn't look impressive by today's standards, but I assure you that it is terrifying by FFI standards. Back in the FFI days a 600HP total was end game, not what you started with when you first popped the game in. Your healers probably had like 300-400, tops.
On the plus side, if you managed to beat the bastard you got a ton of EXP and Gil.
Lil' Update 5 Highlights - The Best Laid Plans
Hey, are you all right?
[Villager]: Uh... yes. I think so. I can't thank you enough?
What about the dude just off to the left getting surrounded?
Man. Since when did Grymoire get so grim, anyway?
Just gonna leave him to his fate? That's cool.
Aw, don't sweat it. Things'll work out. The two of us can handle anything!
[Bahamutian Soldier]: Either way... I know just what to do with him.
Please tell me you didn't come here to start your nonsense again.
Gotta admit, this is becoming a little too much.
There's a time and a place, okay? Right now I'm busy dismantling these doohickeys.
Bartz! I have awaited this day a thousand years!
Did you just add a digit?!
You're not getting away without a duel this time! Don't you want to defeat those...uh...
Coggaboddle-noggabog-daboggawa-- What? You mean the Cogna? So you know a way to beat them?! Yes! Then what are we waiting for?! G-mesh, I must've had you all wrong!
Ha ha ha! I can't believe that it was as easy as he said! Now that I have you alone, we can get our clash on! BARTZ!
Huh? Who's "he"? Do you know a way to stop those machines or don't you?
I just told you what he said I should if I wanted you to play along. Now let's get right down to the main event! True, I may not remember the finer points... But today is the day I finally pick that bone with you that I'm fairly certain I have!
Huh? What?! But I haven't had a chance to settle the score with Bartz!
[Bahamutian Soldier]: Silence! He'll meet his demise at my hands!
Hold on a second. Why the hell would you bother luring him all the way out here you idiot? The town you were in was overrun with Cogna! Why lure someone you want to ambush out of advantageous gloomy urban territory and into bright open neutral territory!
[Bahamutian Soldier]: Once they hear I defeated a Champion, my rise to greater glory is all but assur--
Haven't you ever heard of keeping your word? You promised I would get to fight Bartz one-on-one.
Whaddaya know... So that's the story. This Fed-head played you like a fiddle, Gilgamesh.
[Bahamutian Soldier]: Time for you to die!
Aw man... Once I've wiped the floor with these guys, you're in for an earful!
Agreed. They definitely have it coming to them this time!
This battle is against one Bahamutian Soldier and two Brothertaurs which--
Nevermind. This battle is against a Bahamutian Soldier that will desperately try and knock your stacks down only to most likely fail. He is capable of doing some decent damage, but he's really not much of a threat, even if he did still have the Brothertaurs with him.
If so, then consider me grateful. We would've had a hard time with that on our own. Now... as for you! How could you let him fool you like that?!
I'm sorry... When he approached me, he seemed so keen on helping me find you. I was at my wit's end. I couldn't think of any other way to get you to fight with me.
Aw, come on. Why are you so fixated on fighting me in the fir--
AGAIN! YOU HAD PLENTY OF POTENTIAL HOSTAGES IN THE CITY! WHY THE FUCK DID YOU TRUCK THESE TWO ALL THE WAY OUT HERE!?
What? No! When did he--
That's a great question. Why the hell did those two villagers not just book it as soon as Bartz started fighting him?
[Bahamutian Soldier]: If you're truly a Champion to these people, then you'll lay down your arms at once! Now, do as I say--
What are you waiting for? Shake a leg!
I want to point out that Gilgamesh looks away and the villagers and Bahamutian Soldier just kind of stand there for like 3 seconds before the villagers start to run.
[Bahamutian Soldier]: How DARE YOUUU!
You are just so bad at your job.
You just got Gilga-blocked. Bartz. Take the villagers and get out of here!
Just go! This is my mess to clean up! A shame this is good-bye... Now I will never know the joy of dueling you! Hrrraaaaaah!
*After a pause, Bartz, Boko, and the villagers tear ass out of there*
Ooh, I have awaited this day a million years! BARTZ! This time we settle things once and for all!
Huh?! Heh. How many zeroes do you think you can add before that sounds ridiculous?
Now! What do you say you and me get our fiiight on?!
Uh, no thanks. I'm gonna pass.
Ha ha ha! Boko, let's scram. Giddyup!
Oh, those scamps. Ha ha ha...
Seriously though, chill out with the Gilgamesh appearances for a bit.
Let's do two more interventions and call it an update. The next one is all about Eiko.
Lil' Update 5 Highlights - Test Your Might
I know, Fenrir, you can sense it too. If it's making my horn act up like this, then it can only be a Mirage with some kind of connection to my tribe. We'd better go check it out.
Oh man, that thing looks sweet.
What is it? You don't mean to fight us? Fenrir. Get ready!
Sure seems that way.
It used to be that every the-summoner was the-symbolized by their horn.
Huh, I didn't know that. So Eiko must be descended from an ancient line of them.
So then what about Rydia and Yuna?
Elefenrir has an absurd weakness to Holy. It has Blaze, which is a multi-target fire attack, but that's really about it.
...Okay, except for that move. That's going to be worth watching out for.
Outside of whatever the hell that was, Elefenrir also has Dark. Blaze is the only thing that can hit multiple targets though, so fall back on the typical strategy of having one stack focus on healing when necessary.
Hey, is there a reason you called out to us like that? Huh? What?
Is that the Mirage talking? Wait... I know this voice...
[Elefenrir]: Eiko. These are dark times. And Grymoire faces a terrible crisis. The world will soon have need of the power our tribe possesses, and the Mirages who answer our call.
You mean like right now? Because right now would be a good time to bust out power and Mirages.
"The Mirages who answer our call"? What do you mean? Are there others out there besides Fenrir?
[Elefenrir]: You share a connection with many Mirages. You must find them. Join their power with yours, and wield it well. The future is yours... May it be bright...
Fenrir... Know who that was? That had to have been one of my ancestors' Mirages. Come to think of it, Grandfather once told me... after I celebrate my sixteenth birthday, I would be able to form bonds with many different Mirages. But now, I need to focus on the things I can accomplish in the present. After all, I've still get a long, long way to grow!
Grymoire's in danger... And if it needs my tribe's power-- the summoners' power-- then I'll share it with you. Reynn, Lann.
This is a reference to FFIX. Eiko's grandfather told her not to leave the village until she was 16, and there was an Eidolon that took the form of a Mog that watched over her. Seems kind of weird they wouldn't use a Moogle for this quest, although I guess they needed some way to get Elefenrir worked in.
Another sweet moment of Final Fantasy character references. Thankfully this one wasn't locked behind some stupid BS mini game.
Finally, we'll end things with a "hideous affront to all that is good". That seems like a nice way to ruin that previous moment and avoid ending on a heartwarming note.
Lil' Update 5 Highlights - I've seen enough hentai to know where this is going
*And then we immediately flashback*
Squall! ...No, he's out on a mission too.
I'll take this one.
Terra? Are you ready for it?
Yes. If you need my help, I can fight.
Okay then. But, be extra careful, please. Something feels... off about this one. One witness said, "I can't believe a freak of nature like that even exists." I'm quoting that word for word.
A Mirage that's too hideous to be true? I see...
*Back to the present*
You can handle this, Terra. Come on.
Oh lord no...
Wh-who are you?
How the hell did you get into this game?!
Ultros is voiced by Sam Riegel in English and Masaya Onosaka in Japanese.
Ultros is a reappearing gag character/boss, similar to Gilgamesh. He first appears in FFVI as a recurring boss (you have four battles with the thing over the course of the game) and tries to eat the party on multiple occasions only to be defeated in hilarious manner.
He also makes... suggestive comments towards the female party members. He's made some other appearances since then, although not to the level of Gilgamesh.
If you're wondering why Ultros is an Octopus despite only having seven tentacles, it's because when he was brought to 3D for his XIII-2 appearance, the designers decided to model him that way as a reference to FFVI. Before you fight him in FFVI, the party defeats one of his tentacles, so his contemporary design gives him seven tentacles as a reference to him losing one to the VI party.
(Hold on! Is this the Mirage from the reports?) Hey-- someone has been causing trouble around here. Is it you?
[Ultros]: Ohhh nooo, I would never! Buuut, I know the crook you're after. Oh, what a fiend! How's this: why don't I help you out and show you the way to his lair?
No, Terra. Not "really". Don't be stupid!
[Ultros]: Oh, I'd love to!
Seriously, how did you work your way in here?
Hm? What did you say?
[Ultros]: Uhhh, nothing worth repeating!
[Ultros]: Oh, it'll still be a ways.
*Some ill-advised walking time later*
Listen... could you tell me where you're taking me?
[Ultros]: Geh heh, geh hee hee hee! Uh, why, somewhere that you and I can have plenty of fun together, of course!
What?! Then this whole time, you've been lying to me?! You really are a nasty Mirage. But this is it. You're through!
[Ultros]: Daaah! All right, ya got me, I might have told a fib. But no, I'm not the nasty McNast you're hunting for, I swear!
It doesn't matter. You deceive people for who knows what awful purposes... Never again!
[Ultros]: Whyyy youuu... Fine! Be that waaay! Didn't want to keep up the act anywaaay! You wanna know who's been inking up a stink in this neighborhood? Ultros has. Ooh, shocker! Geh hah hah hah hah! Huh? What's wrong? Tell me, does that make me a bad octopus? Sorry, so sorry!
It's pretty sad, yeah.
Yup. She's much too the-gullible.
One day it's gonna be her undoing, I'm afraid.
[Ultros]: No no, you've gotta believe me, I'm actually a really nice guy-- uh, octopus-guy-- actually, I'm just an octopus.
What? Really? Oh, well why didn't you tell us that sooner?
Wait, what part of him looks "really nice"?
Huh? W-well, no part of him, duh!
Lann, tell me he didn't trick you too.
We-we have an octopus to fight!
Ultros is not particularly threatening, but only because he's on his own. He has access to Tsunami (basically Waterga) as well as Mind Blast (possible confusion and oblivion). If you're using items to heal the status ailments, then make sure to get rid of confusion first. If you get rid of Oblivion then the confused stack/Mirage will have access to its abilities and could wind up pulling god knows what against you.
He mostly sticks to standard physical attacks, but if you somehow wind up getting both of your stacks confused, then you could be in some trouble.
At least you learned a valuable lesson: Always judge a book by its cover. Your time is valuable. Don't want to take the chance that you might waste it on a shitty book.
Anyway, we get an Ultros Memento for that quest, if for some unholy reason you want one on your team.
That's it for now. Five quests have been taken care of, although beating that last one caused another one to take its place, so we still have 11 more to go (at least for now). We'll go ahead with one more Lil' Update and then maybe take a brief trip back to the plot as a break from the... well, break.