Part 31: .hack Outbreak - //Update 07 - Cubia, Round 2//Update 07
Greetings everyone. Because there's currently a small coating of snow and ice outside and I have literally nothing better to do at 7:45 AM, here's another update. Also, y'know, because this update is short as hell. It's "only" 70 images, not counting talking heads.
Today we're gonna tackle the Anti-Existence. The Enemy. We're gonna tackle the other recurring boss in these games that aren't the phases. Let's get started, eh?
So, hey, a level 62 area means we're finally gonna face new enemies!
I've always had a soft spot for the "horde of insect" enemies. Even as far back as those flies in Diablo 2's desert levels. I just like the concept!
Also these guys are fucking stacked HP-wise. They have more health than the past two data drained phases, and have more health than the upcoming boss.
They're also only level 60 enemies. It's a subtle indication that the gloves are starting to come off - we're just about 2/3 done with leveling and we're facing enemies that are halfway to the HP cap!
Speaking of levels, here's the latest from the party. I'm fairly certain that Balmung is forced into your party for this bit. Not that it matters - he's more than capable of holding his own in a fight! Going by the stat numbers, he's more magically inclined than Blackrose, with a couple more points of defense.
She's whipping his ass on defensive stats, however - at a three level disadvantage, no less. Her equipment is also less up-to-date than his is. Basically, Blackrose is much, much better than Balmung in nearly every way. He's no slouch, but she's simply better.
Now, I was celebrating about new enemies. But the game is also a master of trolling. Look at the map layout for the floor. Very few enemies in general, and only one between us and the way down.
It's not even that exciting an enemy. Kite's blades cut it to size and that's that.
Now, when I was streaming this, what, 6 months ago? I was freaking out in this dungeon. I knew what was coming and I was dreading fighting it. So I may have overcompensated a bit and filled up on consumables.
Second floor is no more exciting than the first. The big room was empty, and the only monster portal contained another of those dark dragons we just fought.
Finally the third floor, which was completely devoid of all life whatsoever. There's something really -feeling about this dungeon. Like the developers couldn't be bothered to make a major boss dungeon exciting or even remotely challenging.
What are you up to, Lios?
: Damaged data?
: What's this?
: I think she wants to say something...
An earthquake happens before anyone can talk to Aura.
Also Kite gets attacked by suspiciously familiar purple-blue roots.
This fucking amazing track starts playing for the Cubia boss fight. It's totally worth a listen. Come to think of it, the track that plays from the start of the cutscene until Cubia appears is also pretty awesome.
For all that I will bitch about the gameplay, .hack had some really great music on its soundtrack.
: Huh? Wh - what is it?! Something like that exists?!
: It's... it's that thing again!
: It's big... too big! Can we defeat it?
: It's... growing!
So, Cubia. ...Again. Nothing about this boss has changed. It has the same patterns it had back in Mutation.
First the core comes out, and it's resistant to a type of damage - in this case, physical.
Then the core starts spawning Gomoras. Kill the Gomoras and the core will retreat.
Also thanks to the marvel of screenshots and frame-advancing, you can peer at what's inside the core!
Then Cubia will attack with one of its super skills.
Eventually we'll kill the core. That's where the fight ended last time. We're... not as lucky this time.
No. See, Cubia's gimmick is that each successive time you fight it, it gets another core. Also take a very good close look at that core. What's inside it? It looks familiar...
Anyway, skipping ahead 20 minutes...
Cubia starts dying when we kill the second core. The next time we fight it, in Quarantine, we'll have to kill three cores.
I did a pretty in-depth coverage of Cubia back in Mutation. So if you need a refresher, you'll want to re-read that. It's Mutation's 5th update!
Hm. Looks like Lios was watching us fight Cubia. I wonder what he's up to.
: Hey... by any chance is Cubia trying to stop you from meeting her?
: After what's happened, that's what I think... but it always runs away. I don't get that part.
: But... what happens if I meet Aura? Why does Cubia want to stop that?
: How should I know! Think about it yourself!
: So, what is it?
: I'm telling you, I don't know!
: I see...
Jesus Christ, Blackrose. Kite and Balmung were asking perfectly cromulent questions and you jump down their throats for it. What crawled up your ass all of a sudden?
Anyway, the party gates back to an empty Carmina Gadelica.
: The infection is getting worse. We can't keep fighting on scattered like this...
: What do you mean?
: You do realize it's Lios right?! Are you insane?
: Lios wants to restore this world as well. I'm sure he'll lend us a hand.
: I agree with you.
: I'm pretty sure Lios won't help us.
: Yeah, well... he's got his corporate side that won't let him say yes easily, but...
: We need the information within CC Corp. itself too.
: The question is whether Lios will accept Helba.
: Yeah, that's the tricky part.
: Oh, all right.
: Summon? How?
: Just watch.
: Actually, the problem is what to do after they're summoned.
: Did you say something?
I love this scene. It's so small, so easy to overlook and yet it's so important. They recognized a problem, realized they needed a solution and hashed out a workable solution to that problem. It's the party's first steps of moving to being an active force instead of a reactive one!
Future Bay 21, hm? Movie theater and shopping area, hm?
.hack//Liminality Vol. 2 - In the Case of Yuki Aihara posted:
It's been 11 months ago that I did Liminality 2 and I still really fucking hate Yuki. This also means that I was really wrong about the timing of those events, because the news story is obviously referring to them.
Yeah, the party really needs to get Lios on their side quickly. The simple act of fighting Cubia caused those blackouts. Not data draining, just fighting.
But not as food right? I love Kite's responses so much!
That was short and relatively painless!
NEXT TIME: we'll see just what Blackrose's scheme to get Lios and Helba together was, and we'll also do some of those sidequests. See y'all then!