Part 27: BF22 Castle Karona
In central Karona, beyond Amatorium Square, the Imperial Army had dug in and were ready to confront the Royal Army.
The Valkyrie Aegina was waiting in the center of Rosamil City at the front line, while Court Sorcerer Eudy and her cannons were in the rear. Gulcasa, the Emperer of Carnage himself, took up position at Castle Karona.
The Royal Army stormed through Amatorium Square and approached Castle Karona, hoping to rescue Yggdra.
We're in. So now what?
We should defeat the forces in the center of the city.
She's the only thing standing between us and the castle. Let's go, everyone!
I won't let you pass!
She's got a decent average for stats this time, but we've faced worse. We need to worry about her turns, though. With her high Tec, and immunity to counters, she might be a problem.
Thankfully she has low Luk, so we don't need to be choosy to take her item. Even Durant can claim it.
At her side are these two Assassins, 1,2,3,3, and two Hunters, 2,2,3,2. Nothing special, either way, but we do have to worry about the time effects that come into play. It's day right now, so the Hunters have a strong advantage. The Assassins, likewise, would be annoying at night. If you can prevent being attacked by them, though, you shouldn't have to worry much either way.
The entire area around the Town is marked as Town tiles, too. Mistel would get the terrain advantage for much of the fighting around Aegina.
But before we do anything, let's checkout this nearby town.
What's going on?
Girl: It hurts! Waahhh!
Was it something you ate? Let me see...
Young Man: Yoink!
Hey! Get your hands off me! Argh...
Young Man: I can't believe you fell for that! Seeya!
Hey, wait! That rotten little thief... This is intolerable!
Time to summon a Golem, I guess, and crush the town underneath it...
But yeah. Visit this village, and you lose a random item.
Let's reset, and not do that.
Instead, we'll take Gravity Chaos, and throw Milanor into the fray. This mission starts off with pretty tight quarters, and you're a decent walk away from the town. It's hard to get a decent union in the first turn, and I don't want to wait until evening to attack.
Gravity Chaos, and its curse, should deal with Milanor's increasing battle penalty. And according to the predictions, only Aegina and the last Hunter will be much of a challenge anyways.
The first Assassin goes down without a fight.
Milanor doesn't do much of an opening charge against Aegina, but takes a powerful counter anyways.
Gravity Chaos would wipe out her whole party, but that would just open us up to a Revolution. It would be hard to ensure a victory after that, so instead we'll wait with Gravity Chaos fully charged.
As soon as Milanor's last flunky goes down, we'll let Gravity Chaos go. It'll will bring the fight down to a 1-1, but won't have the annoying damage transfer which makes Revolution so dangerous.
Aegina uses Revolution anyways, but since there's nobody to kill with it, it's harmless. Regardless, it makes the fight easier. Aegina loses the 3 levels in combat advantage from losing all that Rage. Between that and the curse, Milanor wins.
He takes out the next Assassin, and defeats both Hunters. Their higher Gen keep them in the map, though.
Durant will run up to start the next round of attacks.
We have no time to deal with you! Open the way immediately!
You have some nerve, mocking me!
Out of my way! We don't have time to mess around!
You have some nerve, mocking me!
Pretty straightforward here. Durant leads the charge, and Milanor and Mistel clean up the Hunters.
I didn't think this through very well. Milanor didn't need to be here to be part of the union. If Aegina was merely cursed, Milanor should walk out of this fine. I forgot to take into consideration Aegina's Gauntlet, which blocks counters.
Milanor loses 400 morale for that mistake. It was still a close fight.
Durant and Mistel both overcome the Block Counter, and claim victory. Aegina is down to 1038 morale.
Pushing back with the same union, and Aegina falls to Durant in the first clash.
The town is ours to liberate, but we have a bunch of extra movement left over. Why waste it?
Milanor heads up to the Northwestern corner.
The door's locked... Let's see if that key works. Aha! It's open.
With that out of the way, Mistel can retake Rosamil City.
As an aside, if you visit that village just above Durant, you will trade the Hero Badge for an Insect Cage. You need that cage, and the Nestle Bouquet later on to get an item. Since we don't have the bouquet, this isn't an option. Instead, we'll keep the Badge.
Hey, is that...!?
But this is the end of the road! You'll die here, scum!
We beat him, and it's bye-bye to the Empire, right? Now's our chance! Let's go! That cannon up ahead could be trouble.
We'll stop the cannon first, and then vanquish Gulcasa!
Gulcasa, still recovering from the beating we gave him in Paltina, isn't all that threatening here. He still has his Scythe advantage, and Genocide, but his stats in general aren't very high. His Atk is exceptionally dismal.
At his sides are 2,2,2,1 Fencers, and 2,2,2,1 Knights. Milanor and Durant will both do quite well.
Eudy, guarding the cannon, is looking almost typical. 4 Tec will break anyone's Gen at the moment, but her Atk is pretty lame. Her glasses give her a similar effect Nessiah's Etherion gave him. Her Rage bar will fill very rapidly, so we should expect to see 1 or 2 Flame cards per encounter.
Her Witch entourage are all 2,2,3,3 in some ways more deadly than Eudy herself.
By bringing Milanor all the way north before we reclaimed Rosamil, we have a head start here.
We can see the cannon blast range here, too. It's mostly protecting the path to Gulcasa. Since it's night, we don't have to worry about it either way.
How nice of the Empire to not blast the citizens of Rosamil in the conflict against Aegina.
Durant runs up to the safe zone near Milanor, and Mistel will start fighting against the Witches. She has the best chance against them, thanks to having no weapon disadvantage.
We'll deal with the increasing battle penalty by being plain stronger than the Witches, especially with Eudy's 1 Atk.
Oblivious Dawn will come in handy against Eudy, to stop her unending barrage of Flame cards.
As for the other Witches, Flame is ineffective against Mistel's 4 Gen.
Mistel goes 4-0. The regular Witches all survive with around 1000 morale.
Mistel handles the first two counterattacks with no issue, and even eliminates the second Witch.
The third Witch manages to pull a victory, though.
By the time Eudy's turn comes around, the battle penalty is just too high to deal with. It's a close fight, but Eudy wins 0-1.
Milanor will sneak through the cannon range, and wait in the safe zone in the Southeast.
Mistel finishes off the lone Witch.
Next turn, during the cover of night, Milanor will engage Gulcasa's forces. Durant can help from the alley, safe from the cannon.
Despite Gulcasa's lower stats, he is still a difficult encounter. We'll use Gravity Chaos to even the odds. Durant's 4 Tec will easily break Gulcasa's 3 Gen, and deal some damage in the process. We just need to have Milanor deal with his clash quickly enough, so there's time to hit Gulcasa before he uses Genocide.
And that's not a problem.
Gulcasa still manages to use Genocide, but in his cursed state Durant will not put up with it. He takes a huge bite out of Gulcasa's morale.
Holy shit! Durant is on the administering end of a critical hit.
The rest of the forces prove no challenge, and one Fencer is eliminated entirely.
With our remaining movement, Mistel will move into the Witches' attack range. She can't use Gravity Chaos, but she should be able to win 2 clashes unaided.
But first, Gulcasa's men attack. With Gulcasa so late in the union, he'll assuredly have enough Rage to use Genocide immediately. Depending on how the charge/counter go, it may be a little trouble.
Durant evens the numbers at the start.
Ok, nevermind. With 2 Atk, and a curse, Gulcasa is just a pushover.
And with that, Milanor reaches 5 star Atk.
The Witch leads the union against Mistel, and Mistel walks away with 2 victories.
Eudy manages to get a Flame off on Mistel, and leaves her with a burn. Regardless, Eudy falls to 2983 morale.
Shield Barrier has enough Mov to get both Milanor and Durant into safe areas.
But it's not quite strong enough to take out Eudy. The Fort GEO bonuses really makes encounters drag on.
Eudy tries to attack, and Mistel takes her out.
We have a couple items to collect, now, and we want to take out Gulcasa this turn. Steal should do the trick.
Ooooh... It's dangerous to leave this here.
One step is enough to bring Mistel to this cannonball, which was underneath one of the Witches.
It's also enough to bring her here.
Is it locked? Let's use the key we found!
Now Milanor can go visit the Emperor.
How did this get here...?
If you visit this tile during Noon, you'll find a Morning Gown instead a slightly different item.
Hey, Emperor of Clownage! Come and get me!
Pretty much my favourite line in the game.
Hmph! I'll get you!
And this should provide the finishing blow.
We also steal his item, for shits and giggles. He would've dropped it regardless.
We did it! We beat Gulcasa! That sure was easy, though... What's going on here?
Hmm? His hair... Esq. Milanor!
What is it?
This man wears a wig! This isn't Gulcasa! It's a decoy!
What!? So he was just here to buy some time?
This bodes ill... We must search the castle at once!
Have you found the Princess yet?
We've looked everywhere, Sir, but we haven't seen her...
Where have they taken her...!?
Durant! This old man says he saw her. You're not joking about this, right? Tell us everything.
Old Man: I think Princess Yggdra was inside.
What then? Where was the carriage headed?
Old Man: It went east from here...
East from here... Lost Aries, the Land of Ruin!?
What about it?
Beyond the Gate of Atonement lies a scaffold... I fear they plan to execute the Princess!
Are you going to Lost Aries? The way there leads through Marduk Woods.
Is that bad?
It's a deep forest... You'll face a difficult journey.
Please... take care of Russell.
Of course. We won't let anything happen to him.
I'll be fine, Flone. Stay healthy for me here, okay? We'll help build a truly peaceful land when I return...
I'm ready, Milanor. Let's go.
Gauntlet: Stats aren't bad, and Block Counter is always nice. Only lasts for 1 map, though.
Elegant Spear: Nice stats up, and you gain +2 Exp per encounter. Great item if Durant or Nietzsche were lagging behind, especially when used in a level they can do a lot of work themselves. 2 maps.
Mirage Coat: A little boring, but in a level where you expect combat losses, the Gen and Geo bonuses will stop a lot of that fast.
Sorcery Glasses: There might be a bit of a tradeoff in stats, but you can often line it up so Atk -2 has no negative effect. Gauge Fills is pretty nice. 1 map.
Evening Dress: Overall you're looking at the Night . The loss of Tec is less important than the Night advantage. 3 maps.
If you got the Morning Dress instead, you get -4 Gen, +4 Tec. Noon . The stats are better, overall, but Day missions are less common than Night, in general.
Cardinal Cloak: 2 stat increases, but Void Fire is the best elemental defense you can have. Lasts for a good 3 maps, too.
Disfigured Dud: Yeah.
O proud Spirit of the forest... Lash out with thy thorny vines. - Dryad, Nymph of the Woods
Ivy Whip: Pfft... The Tec+3 damage and All Ace look nice, but there are only 3 forest maps in the game. One of them is optional. The other 2 are non-combat missions. Add that with low movement, and you have one of the worst cards in the game. Thanks, Flone.
I remembered this mission being worse than it was. Hmm.
Anyways, your only 2 objectives are to defeat Aegina to liberate the town, and then to defeat Gulcasa. Eudy is entirely optional.
Vs. Aegina This is pretty straightforward. Her entire group is impossible to counterattack, so make your charges count. Mistel is good, thanks to her Town . And any other melee is good against the Archers, but Milanor will have problems against Aegina. The number of archers makes it difficult for your spell caster to get into the action early.
Vs. Eudy If you choose to fight Eudy, you have to make sure to not waste too many turns, and too many power cards. In general, only Milanor is strong enough to overpower their weapon advantage. Russell can also be a good choice, with his Yashamaru equipped. Rosary and Roswell both work, thanks to their weapon neutralities. Rosary has the benefit of Void Fire, too. Mistel has the same weapon neutrality, but may lack the stats. If you didn't get Eudy's noble glasses outside of Karona, then she'll still have them now.
If you are going for it, try to bring 2 units in against Eudy, while 2 head for Gulcasa. It takes a lot of movement get through the cannon range, so try to make a lot of headway at night as well.
Otherwise, you can skip Eudy entirely. If you run a character at a time, you can wait at the safe zone near Gulcasa's troops. Wait until Night, and you can make a big union to make a larger foothold in his territory.
Vs. Gulcasa He's not the threat he was last time. His stats are low enough that you can easily kill him before or during Genocide, especially while cursed. You can steal his cloak early, to bring down it Gen and Tec as well. If he's not cursed, try to get him into the union early, so you have some combat time before Genocide.
If you took Roswell, his Warp can really come in handy here.
There is a ton of movement you can save by warping through some of the dead-space. You only get an item stolen if you stop on the town you can keep warping right past it if you need to.