Part 44: Update -XXXVI- Frustrating FishingBefore we do absolutely anything, I want to get something out of the way.
Update 36 Highlights - Watch me suffer
This. This total garbage needs to be shown and then thrown out the window as soon as possible.
This stupid minigame comes to us courtesy of the Maxima add-on. During the post-game, if you go to the beach in Besaid and run to the end of the pier, you can find Noctis from FFXV sitting there. Examining him gives us the option to join him for some relaxing fishing.
Fuck this minigame. I made my displeasure with this known in the thread while I was wrapping up my first HOUR of playing this pile of shit.
At first glance, it doesn't seem too bad. It's just a matter of hitting the right buttons when they show up and sometimes the button will have to be hit more than once. You start with 35 seconds and gain 1 second for every shark you reel in.
It starts off easy enough. You're just hitting X/Y/B in different orders depending on when they show up. I actually breathed a little sigh of relief during the first 10 seconds or so. "Okay, this isn't so bad. It's going to get faster, obviously, but this seems doable." I thought to myself, clearly forgetting the torture that fishing minigames inflicted on my LP predecessors, like TheDarkID, who subjected themselves to playing them in order to complete everything in the game.
Once the timer has gotten down to about 20 seconds, the problems start to arise. For the first 20 or 30 seconds of real time the buttons are X for Lann, Y for Noctis, and B for Reynn. The only purpose of this is to establish a motor memory in you so that the minigame can proceed to fuck with it later.
After the warm up, the game starts throwing the A button into the mix. This means that you need to constantly be fighting muscle memory, because the button could be an "A" when you were expecting an "X" for example. Your twitch reflexes will likely react before your brain even processes what the colour/letter it is. The early portion of the minigame establishes "Left button/X/Square is for Lann, Middle button/Y/Triangle is for Noctis, Right button/B/Circle is for Reynn." But then every now and again "A" will show up and throw a curve ball. You can't slow yourself down either, because if you take too long to press the button then it's a Miss.
It also brings in the "more than once" button press mechanic that it mentioned. Just as a note, when the game says "pressed more than once" it does NOT mean "mash the button you see". It just means that you press the button you see and you won't reel in a fish. The button or buttons that follow can be completely different from the one that showed up before it. You may need to hit 2 buttons before you get the fish or 3, depending on how big it is. Mega Sharquals and Mega Nightsquals take more to reel in but give more points.
What they do not do is give you more time corresponding to how long it takes to reel them in. You only ever get 1 second for reeling in a fish. So even if Lann has been trying to reel in one fish for 5 seconds, you only get 1 second when it gets pulled in. So if you fuck up the last button in a 3 button reel then too bad! No points for you and you've wasted a shit ton of time that you cannot afford to waste.
But wait! There's more!
The buttons need to be pressed in the order they appear as well. If you fuck up and hit the wrong one first, then you fuck up ALL of the ones on screen.
So, how could this possibly get worse? There's a little bit of RNG involved! Yay!
You need 10,000 points to "beat" this minigame (in the sense that you get the main reward for it). You see the 9,600 I got in the screenshot above? I only fucked up twice in that attempt. 18 Sharquals, 12 Nightsquals, 16 Mega Sharquals, 2 Mega Nightsquals.
My successful attempt? 10,300 and the same number of fuck ups. 22 Sharquals, 10 Nightsquals, 8 Mega Sharquals, and 7 Mega Nightsquals.
This is the Sharqual which got me to exactly 10,000 points. By the time that the 1 second was actually applied (the time bonus gets added to the clock once the "Time +1.00" notification disappears, not when it first pops up), I had exactly 2.00 seconds left on the clock.
I'm assuming the game will always have a minimum of 10,000 points available, but whether it's exactly 10,000 points or 10,600 seems to be left to to the whims of the game. Maybe you have some wiggle room of 2 or 3 misses, or maybe you need an absolutely flawless run. Who knows! Fun stuff.
If/when you manage to get 10,000 points, exclamation points will appear above everyone's heads. You are then given an extra 10 seconds to reel something in. Lann, Noctis, and Reynn are all pulling, so whatever it is must be huge.
The one mercy the game gives you is that you can mash buttons for this portion. Of course there's a good chance you won't figure this out right away because you've been conditioned not to mash buttons up to this point and there's no way you want to risk screwing up at this point. I tried to look up tips for beating this before I even came close to 10,000 points. If I hadn't, and I got to this moment and then failed because I didn't realize I could mash then I think there's a good chance I would have put my fist through my monitor.
It turns out to be Leviathan, which will tack 10,000 points on to your score for absolutely no reason because the score is meaningless.
And there you go. There's your true reward. The game gives you remedies or half-Mega Potions (restores a lot of HP) as pity prizes when you lose, but this is ultimately what it is you're aiming for.
Noctis is voiced by Ray Chase in English and Tatsuhisa Suzuki in Japanese. Not that it really matters, since the only voiced lines he has are a few words/noises during the fishing minigame.
Noctis is from FFXV. He's the Prince of Lucis, although that stops meaning a whole lot in the opening couple of minutes of the game since Lucis is quickly invaded and largely destroyed. XV revolves around his road trip to meet and marry his fiancee as well as learning how to be more kingly. He has the power to use Armiger, which allows him to summon 13 different weapons that were once used by former Lucian kings.
After heading out on his road trip, he and his travelling buddies (the other main characters of XV) learn that Lucis was invaded by the Niflheim Empire, who destroyed the place and swiped the Crystal. Noctis proceeds on a journey to collect all of the Royal Arms by visiting the tombs that house them. He also gathers the ability to summon various Astrals (summon monsters), such as Titan, Ramuh, Leviathan, and Shiva.
Unfortunately, Noctis' journey isn't all fun and good times. Over the course of the game, his fiancee is killed, his friend Ignis sacrifices his eyesight in order to protect him, he's tricked into shoving another friend (Prompto) off a moving train, and his kick ass car gets destroyed. Oh, also he gets sealed with the Crystal for 10 years while the world goes to shit and then wakes up only to sacrifice himself to stop the villain.
But mostly the car thing. He is also very fond of fishing, but I refuse to go into detail about that because of the garbage I just had to go through. Just know that it is the explanation for that minigame and his ties to it. We'll talk more about Noctis once XIII's cast is complete, because XV was originally meant to be part of XIII's universe and the people in the thread have declared XIII to have an EU entry.
Noctis Champion Jewel Ability
Final Fantasy XV Music: Veiled in Black
And that's it! It took me 40 attempts at that stupid minigame, slightly over an hour, all for a Noctis Champion Jewel that I'm basically guaranteed to never use outside showing off his single special move.
You want to know what the biggest slap in the face is about this whole thing? I can learn to deal with the fact that the minigame is frustrating and garbage and that I'm bad at it because I don't have the reaction time of a caffeine addled teenager anymore. I did this to myself. I'm the one that accepted the request to LP this game and I'm the one that decided to do the Maxima version knowing full well that I'd have to do a bunch of completionist crap in order to show everything off. That's all on me.
No, the biggest slap in the face is the fact that after designing all those shitty minigames from the base game; after making a patch to one of the worst minigames with content locked behind it, specifically to try and make it just a tiny bit less bullshit; the developers went right ahead and made one that was just as frustrating as Sandstalker.
I'm done. I never have to play that minigame again. Let's just put this terrible nightmare behind us and move on to stuff that's at least interesting to look at, if nothing else.
We've got a lot of bonus stuff to get through before the Secret Ending, although it actually won't take very long in terms of updates. There are a few Mirages left to pick up, so let's quickly swing around and grab them before we move on.
The first one is hiding up behind the Crystal Tower, in a Murkrift that's new to Maxima.
You need to hop in the airship and fly up to Crystal Tower. It's level 65, but that's nothing at this point of the game. Make sure you have Mirages with good toppling abilities, though. We're going to need to knock down a stack to get this new one.
Ah, it's the regular Chocobo version of Mecha Chocobo. I'm guessing this was the end goal for Mecha Chocobo? Turning regular Chocobos into little Iron Man Chocobos?
Anyway, you just need to use Fire attacks to create a capture chance. Unfortunately, Mecha Choco is in a stack. The best course of action is to take out the two regular Chocobos first (they can use Cure). After that, focus on knocking the stack over. You can then try and take out Mecha Chocobo before capturing Mecha Choco, or you can just go right for Mecha Choco.
With that done, we need to take a quick trip back to Castle Exnine.
You'll start on the Chainroad right next to the entrance to the castle. When you get in, use the Dark Crystal on the far right to travel to the end of the dungeon.
You need to go all the way back here. This is the door we went through in the Bad Ending, where we fought Brandelis and Lann sacrificed himself.
Go to the left and out to the big deck. There is now a Dark Crystal in the distance.
Take the right path in the new area and you'll run into this Syldra looking thing.
Elasmos has the irritating capture condition of needing to be dealt a lot of damage at once to create a capture chance. As with Ultima Weapon, a basic Gravity spell won't be enough to trigger it. There are a bunch of ways to accomplish this, but honestly, I found it easier to just beat Elasmos here and then transfig into it later. With the leveling spots available to us, it would take less time than trying to set up buffs and debuffs to get this right.
Here's the generic Syldra. We can get actual Syldra from the Coliseum, but it's level 90, so I'll be saving that for the final cleanup.
There are some Mirages in the Coliseum that I want right away though.
These become available in the post-game. These four item rewards are needed to unlock two Mirajewel slots each for Lann and Reynn. The bottom two fights (plus another one that is currently out of frame) are special in a different way though.
Because we can get the Cranberry Knights from them!
Moogiepie needs to have magical enhancements used on it (so stuff like Reflect or Shell), Best Boy Cactaur Conductor needs to be inflicted with Evasion Down. The Werebats have a move that can do this called Ultrasonics, so there's an easy way to pull it off.
Tonbro is a bigger issue. He also has the "Deal a lot of damage at once" condition. However, at this point in my recording I had a way to make that happen.
Macho Man has an interesting combination of abilities once he's properly leveled. Revenge Blast is from the Behemoth line, but it's a skill that carries across all forms. It's power rises as HP falls.
He also has an ability called "Last Stand", which allows him to survive an otherwise fatal hit with 1 HP. You can see where this is going.
Snap into a Slim Jim!
This is more than enough to trigger the capture chance.
Unfortunately, the three Cranberry Knights are unique Mirages and therefore cannot be renamed, but they will still be a big help. Master Tonberry has an ability called Sharpened Knife which always deals a critical hit, when it manages to hit that is. You can make a build for him where you pour every blank space on his board into Accuracy Up++ to make the attack more likely to hit. By boosting Critical Damage, it is possible for Master Tonberry to somewhat reliably deal 20-30k damage every turn.
Meanwhile, Master Cactaur as an ability called Perfect Dodge, which is similar to a counterstance and allows for assured dodges of attacks. Master Moogle's special ability is Love Serenade, which boosts defence and magic and can take effect multiple times.
Anyway, with that done, it's time we get cracking on our completion checklist. First of all, we're going to get the EX Dungeons out of the way.
These were part of the base game. The dungeons are different areas of previous dungeons pieced together with super tough Mirages. The location is listed as ???, but online you'll probably see them referred to as (from right to left) EX Dungeons A, B, and C.
No matter how you plan to tackle these, make absolutely sure you enter EX Dungeon A first.
At the very start of EX Dungeon A, there's a chest with an EXP Boost mirajewel in it. You'll want to slap that on Lann or Reynn and never take it off, because you'll be doing a lot of grinding from here on out.
That's the most important item in these dungeons. The other items are helpful, but not nearly as important.
These dungeons are all mishmashes of previous dungeons, so I won't be going over them in detail. We're going to blow through these quickly since there are no new trash mob Mirages and no new locations.
One helpful tip about these dungeons: Get Death. A lot of the Mirage Stacks in these dungeons are very susceptible to Death, making them easy pickings.
Speaking of getting particular skills, Anamika will sell some of the best ones in the game (including Death) for Arma Gems once you have purchased everything from her (all Medals and all Jewels). You can also get stat seeds like Magic++ or Dark Resist Up.
Some of these skills cost a lot of Arma Gems, but enemies in the EX Dungeons will drop them fairly regularly. You can also sell Arma Gems for 50k each, which will provide you with all the money you need.
None of this was particularly necessary in the base game. However, with the addition of Maxima all of this will be a godsend for fine tuning your Mirages in preparation for the super bosses.
Back to EX Dungeon A. The second area of the dungeon is Windswept Mire. There is a treasure chest over by the sand bar where we went to fight Malboro Menace way back when.
Area 3 is Saronia Docks. You can see an Adamantoise lurking in the back there. He is an optional fight and one that I heavily suggest saving until you get to the best grinding spot.
If you do want to take him on immediately, then you just need to take that cannon in the foreground and then trigger the Weight Switch (Weight of 10 and Water Resistance of 100).
Adamantoise is a brick wall. Imprisming him is the better route, but you'll need an ability that inflicts Defence Down. If you plan to fight him head on, then it's best to spam Gravity until he gets to the point where you can chip away the last little bit. He has permanent Shell and Protect, so even hitting him with Ice Spells will only barely dent him (Reynn's Blizzara was only dealing out 455 damage).
In terms of offence, Adamantoise sticks to physical attacks to the tune of 3,000 damage a hit.
If you manage to beat him (or capture him), there are two chests behind him containing a remedy+ and a mega-ether.
Area 3 has a chest near the start (down the really long path to the right of the first clearing), but it turns out to be a Mimic.
Other than that, there is a chest with 3 X-Potions in it opposite the Mimic path. There's also a save point here which you should definitely take advantage of. Because the path south of the clearing has:
Dark Shiva, apparently.
None of the Shivver stack Mirages can be captured, so just focus entirely on beating them. You can either dump on the stack itself using Fire or Light, or you can knock it apart and pick off the Small and Medium Mirages to leave Shivver by herself.
Shivver stack hits for about 3k in damage with physical. Outside of that, she has the same selection of skills as the regular Shiva line. How dangerous that is to you depends on your Ice resistance.
Beating them gets us the mementos for all three forms.
We also get Girl's Diary Entry 11. This is the point where Reynn and Lann realised they fucked up royally and have lost complete control of the situation.
That is incredibly creepy looking...
Your warning is noted. Thanks description people.
On to EX Dungeon B.
Area 1 is the Mako Reactor and has a chest right next to the entrance with a mega-potion in it. Opposite of that is a chest with a mega-ether.
Area 2 is the bottom of the underground prison. The dead end (where the path to Mist Dragon was) has a phoenix pinion in a chest.
Two floors up there are a pair of chests with 3 flash bombs and 2 lightning spellstones. You have to keep running along the catwalk to the opposite side of the ring.
Going up the next set of stairs after those chests will lead to Area 3, which is the Train Graveyard.
When you get to the first clearing, go right and zap the machine, then run up the train car to another platform with two chests on it. They have a megalixir and an Arise mirajewel (Arise is better Rise/Phoenix Down).
After that, zap the machine for a shortcut back to the clearing. You eventually see two chests on a platform way in the background. One is a Mimic Jackpot and the other has 3 war gongs.
Area 4 is Crystal Tower. There's a save point right before the boss, so make use of it or else you'll have to go through this whole place again.
If you go all the way to the bottom of the staircase first, you'll find two chests with 4 haste stones and a mega phoenix.
The boss for EX B is a Rairamuh Stack. Same as with the Shivver Stack, you cannot catch these. Use Fire, Ice, Wind, or Light. They have a weakness to earth as well, but flying/floating enemies can't be hit by most earth attacks (since they are flying). Earth Spellstones are some of the only things that work (Earth is a terrible element in this game).
Once again, we get mementos for each of the three mirage forms. We also get Girl's Diary Entry 12.
I'm not sure where the strange place is that the twins' wound up. Besaid? That's the continent directly below Nine Wood Hills. It's not the fake Nine Wood Hills, since we'll see later that the twins' escape from this place. They also still have their memories here.
I kind of like this look for the Ramuh line.
EX Dungeon C, let's do this. We're almost to the best spot for grinding.
Area 1 is the Pyreglow Forest, but there are no chests here. To avoid needless dead ends, go down at the first path split, then keep going down as far as possible before taking a right. From that point on, just keep running down.
Area 2 is the Mountains.
Keep following the path down until you see a Flutter point off to the right. There is a chest over there with an Agility++ mirajewel in it.
Area 3 is Castle Exnine. There's a chest right near the start with dream powder in it. Shortly after that is a chest with 6 potions, which... really? Potions? At this stage of the game?
Then there is a chest with 3 hi-potions in it beyond that. Come on guys, this is all worthless at this stage.
Then there is a chest with 2 X-Potions after that. At least these are actually useful.
After that, a chest with a mega-potion. Then 5 ethers. Then 4 hi-ethers. 2 turbo ethers. A mega-ether. Elixir. Finally, a megalixir. This place has a ton of chests, only half of which are of any use. They are all on a linear path, so you can't miss any of them.
Area 4 is Valley 7. There is a Chill spot right near the start. It leads to a chest with 3 fire spellstones. Continue along the main path and keep going left when you get to a split. There's a chest at the bottom of the ramp that has a phoenix pinion in it. Then go back to the split and continue north.
Keep going North and you'll reach the Save Point along with the boss. You can probably guess what it will be.
You know the routine by now. Hit it with Ice or break up the stack first, it's up to you.
Girl's Diary Entry 13 shows Reynn quickly losing her mind at the realisation that the two of them are straight screwed.
And here is the Gleefrit line. I don't really have much to say about it.
Clearing EX Dungeons A, B, and C will cause EX Dungeon D to appear. Honestly, I recommend throwing on the Stealth Mirajewel or getting a Mirage with the Flee ability and just torching through this place as fast as humanly possible. The best grinding spot in the game lies at the end of it.
Area 1 is the Chainroad (inside the chain). There's nothing here, so just keep going south.
Area 2 is the top portion of Big Bridge (the area where we fought Gilgamesh). Once again, no treasure here. Just keep going south.
Area 3 is Phantom Sands. No treasure. Keep going south.
Area 4 is the Watchplains. Stay on the main path and don't take any of the side routes since there's no treasure.
Area 5 is Nether Nebula. Still no treasure.
Area 6 is the very first place we saw when we got to Grymoire. There is a chest in this area, although it's all the way at the end.
It's Girl's Diary Entry 14. Let's see what it has to say.
So the twins' go on the run, having realized that Mom and Dad were possessed by alternate dimension demons and aren't just cosplaying as part of an elaborate plan to teach them a lesson.
Head a little further south from that chest to arrive at:
The prime grinding location. There are three main mobs in this area which show up regularly and are easily dealt with for massive EXP payouts. One consists of six Chocochicks, another is a group of six Mu, and the other is a stack of Chocochick/Babyhemoth/Behemoth and 2 Mu. There are other mobs that consist of a mix of tougher enemies, but the three I just detailed are the important ones.
The stack mob is the toughest of the three to take out, but they still aren't a big threat (Death works on the stack). The Chocochick and Mu mobs can be dealt with through -aga spells or Ultima. The EXP payout for these groups (with the EXP boost on) is 170-200k and it can take only a few seconds to finish a fight.
If you slap on the Lure mirajewel and run in circles (while passing through the save point, thereby providing you with infinite AP restoration) you can easily go from level 60 to level 90 in about an hour or so. You can swap your Mirages from the save point, so this is also an amazing place to grind for the Legendary Caretaker trophy/achievement (if you care about that). Legendary Caretaker requires you to master 100 unique mirage boards.
Anyway, make liberal use of this spot. You have to be completely prepared for what's past that Dark Crystal.
You're going to need whatever help you can get. Remember that Gundam looking thing that almost got through the portal before the League of S showed up and pulled the summoners out? Well, it's here now.
Update 36 Highlights - XG Boss Fight
Whoooa! Don't say another word! This thing is RIGHT where it's supposed to be.
Reynn just stopped a world much the-bigger than this one from imploding.
XG is not a joke. It rocks about 140k in HP and doesn't have any elemental weaknesses to exploit.
It has an attack called Raigeki which deals about 2000 damage. I believe it's Ice based, since Reynn's Shivalry stack absorbs the damage.
Basic physical attacks can hit for over 3000 though.
I want to point out that my team that is pictured here is between levels 87 and 90. With the proper stacks focusing on resisting XG's attacks (Fire and Ice mostly), you could do this at level 80 or slightly lower.
Flaming Hell is a multi-target attack which will fuck you up if you are weak to Fire (as Reynn's stack is).
XG also seems to be somewhat resistant to Gravity. I think Gravity only shaved off 1/8 of XG's health as opposed to 1/4. Gravity still helps (dealing about 7k-8k damage on the first cast), but it's not quite as effective as it normally is against really high HP/Defence bosses.
Then there's his special attack.
It hurts, even with resistance.
Don't be afraid to pop megalixirs in this fight. You can get more. X-Potions will do for health, but refilling AP at the same time is the major benefit. You could also use Elixirs if only one stack is in need of saving.
Kishin can critical as well, so that's fun.
Beating XG grants 200k, 2 Arma Gems, and a Megalixir. We also get Girl's Diary Entry 15 as well as XG's eldbox.
XG is a reference to Xenogears, a game that Squaresoft released in 1998 and has promptly thrown in the closet.
The game was pitched to be Final Fantasy VII by creators Tetsuya Takahashi and his wife Kaori Tanaka. It was rejected for that, proposed as a sequel to Chrono Trigger, but then ended up becoming it's own thing. It's a bit of a cult hit, but the second half suffers from severe time crunch and budget limitations. The second half of the game is basically just various characters recounting the plot in cutscenes.
Tetsuya would go on to co-found Monolith Soft and create the Xenosaga series as kind of a successor to Xenogears. Kaori Tanaka would later leave (or was let go, no reason was given for her departure) during the development of Xenosaga Episode II.
XG's design is based on Xenogears (the titular robot, not the game), which was the ultimate Gear in the game. All of XG's moves are based on Xenogears moves as well. Raigeki and Kishin are properly named, but Flaming Hell seems to be a renamed Kosho X. Kishin appears to be a combination of multiple moves though, since that axe kick to an explosion is similar to the Goten X ability and not part of Xenogears Kishin attack.
The "you-know-who" that the description is talking about is likely Kunihiko Tanaka, who was the character designer for Xenogears.
This is the final entry. It seems to recount what happened to Lann and Reynn to send them to fake Nine Wood Hills. From what I gather, Lusse used the weapons that Rorrick created to seal Brandelis in a pocket dimension (this is the place where we first saw him and is what the Four Keys/associated Pleiad were maintaining). Lusse then managed to use Rorrick's powers in combination with her own to create Fake Nine Wood Hills in a last ditch effort to save Lann and Reynn after getting taken over by Pellinore and Segwarides. Rorrick's powers weren't used correctly, so Nine Wood Hills was basically just a pocket world removed from time's flow with just Lann and Reynn existing in it.
Lusse and Rorrick apparently wanted help in saving the twins, but Enna Kros decided not to stick her nose into it and instead just let things be.
The question is, where did this log come from? It seems machine-like. It can't be Enna Kros, Lusse, or Rorrick, because they are referred to by code names and not in first-person. It isn't Segwarides or Pellinore, because it doesn't fit their speech patterns. It definitely isn't Brandelis, because he is also referred to be a code name (Subject 4). We also know that it isn't Hauyn, because she was sealed in the Prism and left in some kind of time stasis for a hundred years (she also calls Lusse "Lady Lusse", so it's doubtful she would have started calling her "Subject 2").
Questions and questions. Maybe we'll get some answers... in a future update. The next update will have us blasting through the hidden dungeon of Maxima, possibly doing the last Intervention Quests (the Maxima ones), and then getting to the bottom of whatever the hell that portal is in Crystal Tower.