Part 4: Sacred Cards, part 4/4Sacred Cards, part 4/4
Well guys, here it is. The Battle City finals and the grand finale to Sacred Cards. Get comfy, because there are only four duels left to be played, which means a LOT of cutscenes are incoming.
But first, we have another sidequest available! Around the time you get Obelisk, you can visit the Aquarium because...maybe your character wanted to cool off a little? I haven't a clue.
You'll encounter Mai Valentine being stalked by a movie star. This is Jean-Claude Magnum and he's pretty much the definition of a filler character. The anime just decided to randomly have this guy show up right before the finals. Not sure if the manga did that too. Here, at least, he's just a sidequest.
Mai decides to make us take out the trash, and just to increase the pressure, promises to marry Mr. Magnum if we lose.
No, that doesn't actually happen if you lose, losing just boots you back to your house and the game pretends it never happened.
Then why can't you just do it yourself, Mai? You're good at card games, right?
So we defeat Mr. Magnum and head back to the game shop. Everyone puts the locator cards together and finds that the finals are being held at a run-down stadium in town.
The finalists turn out to be me, Yugi, Joey, Mai, Kaiba, Marik, Bakura, and that totally friendly dude Joey met right before he was made into Marik's mind slave. Huh.
If you defeated Mr. Magnum, Mai rewards you with a card.
Hey, relax, Mai, I won't use it against you.
Correction: I CAN'T use it against you.
"Marik" is the last to arrive. That face is pretty intimidating, I'll admit.
As it turns out, Kaiba has decided to hold the finals atop a flying blimp for no other reason than he has the money to do it so he may as well. The first match is Bakura vs. Yugi.
What ever could you mean, Joey? Did Bakura manage to get all five Destiny Board cards on the field and win instantly?
Destiny Board vs. Exodia actually sounds like a fun matchup.
Oh yeah, Bakura has a Millenium Item, too. Bakura possesses the Millenium Ring, which has an evil demonic world-destroyer sealed inside of it. I'm dead serious. Actually, the Ring has a FRAGMENT of an evil demonic world-destroyer inside of it, and he regularly clashes with Yugi.
Luckily, Yugi has the spirit of an ancient Pharoah in his Millenium Item!
Ouch, sick burn. Actually, I did check Yugi's decklist. He has only FOUR pieces of Exodia. Which contradicts canon, come to think of it...
Yugi's packing a new monster here, though. It runs over Bakura very easily.
Its real name is Osiris, but 4kids decided to insert a shoutout to Roger Slifer, the Executive Producer of the English dub for the first season.
Know what, he did good work before he passed away two years ago, so I'll let this one slide.
Yes, the God cards can only be used by the CHOSEN ONES!
Wait. If Strings has Slifer in his deck (as he did in the anime) how did Yugi get it after we beat Strings?! Did he just happen upon Strings's body and just...take it?! That's looting!
Finally, it's our turn. We get to deal with the bad guy because of course we do.
Yugi points out, however, that those who own Millenium Items can tell each other apart, and this guy is most certainly not Marik.
No, his real name is Odion and he's pretending to be Marik. I haven't a clue why he needed to do that. Is the real Marik just not scary at all compared to Odion?
Assuming you even get to play it!
Odion doesn't fool around. This is where the game gets very difficult. He uses strong, defensive Rock monsters, which he can later tribute for either his God card, or another signature monster of his.
That monster is Mystical Beast Serket.
Which is Fairy-type.
A fairy. That's a fairy. Okay I know the fairy type was called "Angel" in Japan, but that's even LESS sensical!
Anyways, Serket has the ability to eat enemy monsters and absorb their attack points. Pretty impressive for one tribute.
Hey look, I have a Spell that destroys a monster, and another that revives a monster.
Yep! You should be careful, though, he has one mosnter capable of stealing his monster back. The Ritual monster, Relinquished, is in Odion's deck and it can steal one enemy monster.
Yes, I am fully aware Relinquished is a Ritual monster you'd normally need a Ritual spell to use. Odion does not care one bit. He can play Relinquished like a normal monster. He's the only duelist in the game to do that, in fact. Well, the player can do it too, I suppose.
Oh, did I mention the God cards can smite unworthy souls who dare play it? Why were they even created and why weren't they DESTROYED if they're so dangerous?
He didn't even get the chance to summon it in that duel, what are you talking about?
Odion gets struck by lightning, and the real Marik reveals himself.
"I'll give everyone really bad paper cuts!"
Marik just so happens to have his own super-powered evil side, created after Marik suffered some very contrived trauma as a kid. Now he wants to destroy the world because come on, that's just what these madmen do.
HE JUST TOLD YOU, GEEZ!
The next match is Joey vs. the real Marik. Why isn't he disqualified for entering under a false alias? I guess there was no rule against it...
Was saying the word "die" really out of the question here?
Marik reveals the third God, the Winged Dragon of Ra, and runs over Joey with it.
Joey falls unconcious and will remain that way until Marik is defeated.
You can wander around the blimp, and can find Marik about to stab Odion, but for some reason he backs off when you find him.
That just leaves these two. Seto Kaiba rather unceremoniously runs over Mai.
The blimp lands on an island formerly used by Kaiba Corporation as an HQ. It's been worn down over time, though.
Ooh, good one. The only thing more fitting is a tomb decorated with Link Monsters.
Inside the tower, we start the semifinal duel of the game. In the anime, there was a four-way Battle Royale to determine the matchups, but we can't do that with this engine of course.
Yugi upgrades his deck here with some great Spell cards, the fifth Exodia piece, and two three-tribute monsters you really DON'T want him to summon.
Unfortunately for him, I have so many powerful cards by this point he won't even get the chance.
We are awarded with the second God card. Let's take a look.
Slifer sucked horribly in the TCG, but here, he's, eh, okay. He can increase his attack by 1500 for every card in your hand, just in case you wanted to make an invincible God even more invincible. I guess it's cool to have an easy road to five digits of attack power.
Okay Kaiba, as long as you actually get your Ultimate Dragon on the field, everything should go smoothly!
Kaiba decides to up the level of awesome by creating a holograph of a gladiator arena for this duel.
Oh, just like the rest of the game, then.
Nice going, Kaiba. He falls unconcious too. It's really all down to us, isn't it.
The only thing standing between us and the ending is Marik.
It begins. Marik has a powerful deck with some of the game's best cards.
He has Ancient Lamp, which summons a strong, 1800-point Fiend to the field, which is further boosted by the Yami terrain. He has another 1800-point monster that can attack directly.
He has Harpie's Feather Duster and Monster Reborn - TWO copies of each in fact, despite the player being restricted to only ONE copy of these. He's cheating. And this is all before you factor in the Winged Dragon of Ra.
But you know what?
My deck packs almost twice the punch and has Obelisk, so it's not like the challenge is that much higher.
However, he has one bullshit card that can ruin your match if he draws it. This is Thousand-Eyes Restrict. Like Relinquished, it can steal an enemy monster. Unlike Relinquished, the stolen monster is powered up just to rub your face in it further. TCG players might remember needing to Fusion summon it, but nope, not in this game! Thankfully Marik tried to use it on the God card, who is immune to the effect.
Now, I could just finish him off with Obelisk right there, but I wanted to end Sacred Cards with a much bigger bang than that. Then I thought of something that would be outright amazing if I could pull it off. What was it, you ask?
Killing a God monster with a non-God monster. I picked up this card from Lumis earlier. The Masked Beast Des Gardius has 3300 attack points, making it the strongest two-tribute monster out there. And it's a Fiend, so this field pushes its attack points all the way to 4290 - HIGHER than the Gods.
Of course you can beat Ra very easily even if you actually let Marik summon it. For whatever messed up reason, Ra counts as a Machine monster, which means the Umi field spell WEAKENS him. The other two Gods don't have that problem, which really makes me wonder why everyone thinks Ra is powerful or dangerous, but what can you do?
How about not only killing it but reviving it to your side as well?! This is technically the only way you can control Ra, since the game ends as soon as you beat Marik. Why the game awards you half a million Domino for beating him is something I've pondered on occassion. Was a New Game Plus mode planned? That'd have been a good thing, the game has so little replay value without a multiplayer mode.
In addition to being weak in the Umi field, Ra's effect is by far the worst of all three: He reduces your LP to 1, then reduces the enemy's LP by however much you lost. If you're ahead in LP, you win instantly, but seriously? Obelisk at least doesn't leave you vulnerable to the Sparks spell! (Sparks literally just does 50 damage. If you kill someone with it it's rather hilarious.)
Kaiba and Joey wake up and presumably duke it out for the coveted Bronze Medal, Mokuba says "Thank-you" for once, and we head back to town.
Ishizu greets us when we arrive.
What? Hell no, they're actually pretty good if you play them right, I'm keeping them! They're safer with me anyways.
Yeah it's another "But Thou Must" moment, so no you don't get to keep them. Hopefully they don't turn to stone or something stupid.
Man, the attention to detail is incredible. They drew a whole portrait just for this one line of dialogue.
Everyone goes home after that, and we return to our normal lives. Would suck if another crisis decided to disrupt our boring routine, huh?
The credits roll, and we're shown mugshots that certainly won't be recycled in the sequel!
Why couldn't they hire him back for Generation 7? sob
This concludes Yu-Gi-Oh! The Sacred Cards. We still have a hell of a lot to get through.
Next time, we check out the four Gameboy Color Yu-Gi-Oh games, and then after that......the true Shadow Realm of gaming.