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Shadow gamer
Jul 24, 2008

I PASSED UP A BARGAIN

Lotish posted:

Are we officially further than the TotalBiscuit LP now? I don't remember seeing him fight Basanda.

edit: I got my SA account to comment in TB's LP. Looking at my reg date I realize I've been waiting almost six years to see the end of this game. God. drat.

TB's LP is what brought me to LP... So many waste hours.

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Bloodly
Nov 3, 2008

Not as strong as you'd expect.

quote:

This is a dirty, damnable lie, and I have seen men executed for less.

You're talking to someone who did it both at end-game and when you get him. He was comparable in ability to most physical members.

Glazius
Jul 22, 2007

Hail all those who are able,
any mouse can,
any mouse will,
but the Guard prevail.


Fun Shoe

I suppose Basanda was hiding the fact that without her the Titan would go berserk, but we really couldn't have left her alive.

inthesto
May 12, 2010

There is a point where we needed to stop, and we have clearly passed it.

BUT LET'S KEEP GOING AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS!


Part 33: Training Time!



First order of business is to rearrange the entire army. All the losers who have been warming the bench are going to get a shot at redeeming themselves today.







We pick up some mithril weapons for everybody to get their ATT up to an acceptable level. It doesn't need to be terribly high, and with all the levels they're lacking, their stats look quite bad. This will be fixed soon enough.




Penn, on the other hand, is still a piece of poo poo. He's not even going to get a real accessory, but hold the Elbesem Orb instead. Sadly, he's best off this way.



One of the doors in the previous fights leads onwards with the plot. This is not that door. Instead it's a bonus dungeon. I won't be doing the entirety of it today; only the first section. It is, however, the most important section.




All this map has is a single enemy that I could wax in a single attack if I wanted to.



Or not.



But hey, they've got completely poo poo stats, easily low enough for everyone but Penn to wipe them out in a single hit. The best part? They fork over 49 experience on death until about level 9 promoted. Even after that, you can reasonably hit level 11 promoted off the skeletons, which is only a level or two behind the regular crew, which makes for easy stat comparison.




On the other hand, because Penn is so far behind in levels, he has to use the Elbesem Orb in order to do damage. Without being able to one-shot the skeletons for a while, training up Penn is a very slow process. Luckily, the AI doesn't prioritize Penn as a target for some reason. It would much rather beat on Masqurin or Synbios, who can tank their unusually high critical rates with ease.



Even though the skeletons only do 1 damage per hit, they have something like a 25% chance to critical for 8 or 9 damage. When I'm too lazy to send Grace over to heal someone, it means somebody dies eventually.



Luckily, Justin died at a convenient point where Penn hit level 20 unpromoted. Notice how his stats are still complete crap.

Also worth mentioning is that stat growths tank after level 10 unpromoted. Levels 11 – 20 before promotion will almost never get points in every stat, and will sometimes give you completely empty levels. Naturally, Penn got empty levels on 18, 19, and 20, doing a great job of wasting my time.



However, I do finally get Penn up to level 11 promoted after three hours with fast forward on my emulator. This was a wonderfully dull way to spend my Saturday afternoon. For reference on how bad that attack stat is, it's comparable to Masqurin and Noon. The highest attack on the army is Horst, who beats him by 23 points.

Anyway, remember how I said there was a better grinding point for Masqurin's ranks in rods? While I was training up all the benched characters, I brought in Masqurin and Eldar to train up rods and swords, respectively. The skeletons in the bonus dungeon make perfect fodder for this exercise. Rather than explain it myself, I'll let the Shining Force Central forums do the talking for me:

quote:

Although there're only three levels for skills, there is a hidden parameter. If we call this parameter P: 
P< 70 means level 0 
P> 70 means level 1 
P> 150 means level 2 
P= 250 means level 3 and will not increase anymore 
When unpromoted P can't exceed 150, so any extra effort doesn't count and only lv2 special attack can be used. 

How P increases: 
Using item=0 
Counter attack=0 
Healing and status magic=1 -no matter how many people the magic is cast on. 
(Quite unfair for healers) 

Now about attacking: 
It's calculated by opponent's HP and the damage(D) given. 
D=0 -> P=0 
D= 1~20% of enemy HP -> P=1 
D=21~40% of enemy HP -> P=2 
D=41~60% of enemy HP -> P=3 
D=61~80% of enemy HP -> P=4 
D=81~100% of enemy HP -> P=5 
Attack with magic or using items can also be calculated this way. 
If attacking more than one enemy at one time, only the largest number will be added. 
That is to say the greatest increase you can get from one movement is 5. 

In other words, the greater percentage of an enemy's HP you do, the faster your weapon rank goes up. Masqurin beating on Wilmer for 1 HP a turn was a terrible and slow way to do it. Whacking each skeleton for full HP every turn? Much faster. I got everyone to rank 3 in their respective weapon as a result, with Eldar getting rank 3 in swords as a bonus because I just happened to have an extra mithril sword courtesy of Wilmer.

Now then, let's take a look at how everyone turned out.

The Core: These characters are the core of our army and are not going anywhere




Synbios is a no-brainer, and even if he weren't, I wouldn't have a choice. The phoenix sword is giving him some good resistances, and his stats make him a real threat. You can actually see the power of the spells in the second tab, and his base affinity with lightning is so high that his Spark is actually stronger than Noon's before any supports come into play.




Dantares and Cybel are just as monstrous as ever. With Dantares caught up, Cybel is just a point or two behind in attack and defense once you compensate for differences in weapons and levels. While Dantares is strictly superior, Cybel is still one of our best characters.




Nothing spectacular on the stats, but Grace gets to stay due to her being the only dedicated healer. The steel tiara we bought is really doing work to her defense and luck stats, not that she needs the latter. And holy hell, look at the damage on that Thanatos!




Masqurin's raw stats are pretty weak, but that's not why we keep her around. Funnily enough, her Phoenix is actually not much stronger than Synbios': The phoenix sword is giving him high magic bonus, so the only difference without supports is their base fire affinity, where Masqurin barely wins. However, Masqurin has a much larger MP pool plus Noon's support to work with. For the curious, the power on Blaze 4 is 57 (a much better damage to MP ratio, but bigger numbers on bosses is just more satisfying) and Spark 3 is 43.




Noon is packing some serious defense thanks to the life ring and the wendigo wand. His spell set is much more oriented towards single target damage, as Wendigo 2 has a power of 73. Unfortunately, he doesn't have Freeze 4 yet, so he can't deal amazing single target damage otherwise. Soul steal does have a chance of instant killing an enemy, and Spark 2's power is a measly 28 compared to Masqurin's 34.



Not much to say here. A brick that also tend to get his poo poo ruined by magic. Obright is intentionally missing for a reason.




Irene has lackluster stats, but they're good enough to punch enemies when needed. The real reason I'm keeping her around is Resist 2, which is going to be invaluable for the upcoming fights. Also, look at how pathetic the power on Tornado 3 is. Shameful, I say.



Hayward is tied for second-highest attack and has amazing defense on top of that. Before we sing too much praise for him, remember that he's getting an extra 12 defense from his weapon and accessory together. Without those, his defense is just tied with... Obright. And he has more HP than Obright. This is why Obright is currently missing from the core line-up.

The Wildcards: These characters are either lacking in a specific dimension, or are largely redundant with another character in the core unit, hence relegating them here. For the most part, none of these characters are bad, but they're 11th or 12th slot characters. And wouldn't you know it, we have three slots that need filling.



Adjusting for levels and weapons, Justin is tied with Hayward in attack if not actually slightly better. The real difference is in the defense and HP. Even just looking at base stats, Justin is missing a bit of durability. The terrain penalties for being a centaur don't matter with what little is remaining of the game, thankfully.



Inferior attack and defense to Horst, which is why we keep warriors around. His extra 2 HP doesn't mean squat when magic and element swords are going to wreck either of them. While axe criticals do more damage than mace criticals, I could easily toss Obright's weapon to Horst to take care of that problem. The fact that Hayward's defensive stats are comparably better than Obright's is kind of embarassing. Not a bad character, but he's lacking anything special to secure his spot on the team.



Kahn's physical stats are superior to Irene's, even while three levels behind, but that's not the reason we keep monks around. Slow and Support are nice spells, but not necessary. His abysmally low MP pool also badly restricts his utility as a character. He gets some pretty cool criticals and can work as a second fiddle to Grace and Irene, but he's far from top tier material.



Wow, talk about a bad character. His attack is barely any better than Kahn's, which is pathetic for a dedicated attacker. Not terribly durable, and his high movement with non-existent terrain penalties is largely irrelevant by the time you get him. Doesn't even get a good support like Ratchet.



Ratchet doesn't have much to brag about either. He's sporting some of the worst offense by a fair margin, and his defenses are on par with Justin's. His ability to switch between a melee/ranged and a pure ranged weapon is hardly relevant, and none of his criticals do anything interesting either. The only saving grace here is the support, but it's far too late to farm that.




Hagane has the better offense of the two ninjas, but it's still bad. Sleep has worn out its welcome, and soul steal is nice but Hagane's luck is so crap that I don't care about it anymore. The katana criticals cause status effects, but eh.




Murasame has trades physical stats for better spells. As I've mentioned, slow and support are nice, but unnecessary. It's just even worse that he doesn't even have the rank 2 versions like Kahn does. While Hagane and Murasame both pack useful dual supports, they come in too late to make any use of them.

The Rejected: Come on, you know what's going here



Surprise! Eldar's looking pretty good, but this is her with the shiva sword equipped. If we switch her back to the zero wing, she'll lose 3 attack but gain 4 defense, which is probably the better way to have her equipped. However, despite the fact that she's fairly powerful in this run-through and her flying status is invaluable, I have my own secret reasons for sending her to the bench. I promise it's completely plot-related and has nothing to do with her performance.





It's voting time again!

We've got our core nine characters, which leaves us with three slots left over. Pick the three characters you want to see go into the main army, and the three with the most votes gets to stick with Synbios and company for the rest of the game!

NEXT TIME: Finishing up the bonus dungeon

Serifina
Oct 30, 2011

So... dizzy...


I'm gonna vote for Justin, Frank, and Ratchet.

This is mostly because I feel like they're neater than the others.

Hoss Corncave
Feb 13, 2012


Send Justin, Ratchet and Murasame to the main army.

Frank's movement is useful, Obright is strong against Silver Knights and I managed to get lucky with Hagane's Soul Steal last time I did that battle.

Also, I know you haven't mentioned them yet, but hire Twiggy, because Kahn won't cut it as a dedicated healer.

Zanzibar Ham
Mar 17, 2009

You giving me the cold shoulder? How cruel.


Grimey Drawer

We already have 2 knights, a gladiator and a master monk, so I'll vote for Frank, Ratchet, and Hagane.

Shitenshi
Mar 12, 2013


Obright, Hagane, and Kahn.

ChrisAsmadi
Apr 19, 2007
:D

Kahn, Hagane and Obright.

alcharagia
Apr 23, 2008

YOU'RE NOBODY


Penn.

Ardeem
Sep 16, 2010

There is no problem that cannot be solved through sufficient application of lasers and friendship.

Man, I don't think I've ever seen Obright turn out that badly before. Anyway voting for Justin, Ratchet, andHagane

Shiki Dan
Oct 27, 2010

If ya can move ya toes ya back's fine


Obright, Murasame, and Justin just because of the nature of the final battle and I'm giving you a break since this battle gave me so much trouble when I first played.

marshmallow creep
Dec 10, 2008

I've been sitting here for 5 mins trying to think of a joke to make but I just realised the animators of Mass Effect already did it for me


Serifina posted:

I'm gonna vote for Justin, Frank, and Ratchet.

This is mostly because I feel like they're neater than the others.

I'll support this vote.

Losem
Jun 17, 2003

Practicing shooting fundamentals.

Hoss Corncave posted:


Also, I know you haven't mentioned them yet, but hire Twiggy, because Kahn won't cut it as a dedicated healer.

I don't believe you can hire any of the mercenaries if you get all the characters. They are only there to fill out the roster if you miss a hidden/optional character like Noon, Ratchet, Frank ect.

I say Frank, Ratchet, and Hagane.

Aces High
Mar 26, 2010

and then we'll have pancakes to celebrate and I'll be like EURGNOMEHREUGN.



Eh, let's go with Murasame, Justin and...Ratchet

Nephrite
Aug 18, 2006
[img]https://forumimages.somethingawful.com/images/newbie.gif[/img]



Lipstick Apathy

Isn't Penn useful because his supports give a Luck Bonus as well as something else? Well, useful in a relative sense.

Bloodly
Nov 3, 2008

Not as strong as you'd expect.

Losem posted:

I don't believe you can hire any of the mercenaries if you get all the characters. They are only there to fill out the roster if you miss a hidden/optional character like Noon, Ratchet, Frank ect.

I say Frank, Ratchet, and Hagane.

You're allowed one if you have all the characters.

KataraniSword
Apr 22, 2008

but at least I don't have
a MLP or MSPA avatar.
I am my own man.

Nephrite posted:

Isn't Penn useful because his supports give a Luck Bonus as well as something else? Well, useful in a relative sense.

Penn is never useful. If I have to spend eighty years grinding up a character from the bottom of the shitheap, I want a Bleu, not an Adam.

Let's go with "Team Unique Class": Justin, Ratchet, and Frank.

inthesto
May 12, 2010

There is a point where we needed to stop, and we have clearly passed it.

BUT LET'S KEEP GOING AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS!


Quick update with the current standings:

Ratchet 7
Justin 6
Frank 5
Hagane 5
Obright 3
Murasame 2
Kahn 2

I'll leave voting open for another day or so while I prepare the next update that's nothing but talky bits, so the party doesn't matter. The leaders seem fairly clear at the moment, but if there's some kind of insane tie at the end, I'll leave it to a sudden death vote.

vibratingsheep
Nov 2, 2013

Fudou, Gunzou. The Face of the Franchise Killer. 2004.


In the interests of mobility and Ninja Technique, I vote Justin, Frank, and Hagane

AsInCoolAsA
Feb 25, 2011


Ratchet, Frank, Justin
Range is pretty nice for the last few battles.

inthesto
May 12, 2010

There is a point where we needed to stop, and we have clearly passed it.

BUT LET'S KEEP GOING AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS!


Part 34: I lied, it's more words




There's several ways out of the catacombs. This is the wrong one.




This is the right one, as we'll be interrupted before we can exit.

The Imperial army has taken control of Aspia Castle! If you proceed, you will be trapped like rats! When the Imperial army raided the castle, we managed to sneak out in the chaos. Then we hid inside the ruins.

Have you, by any chance, seen Algernon, the son of Tristus?

If I remember correctly, the commander of the Imperial army, Prince Arrawnt, kept him nearby.

It seems Algernon is being kept in their custody to keep the Malorie army at bay. That way, they can take out the Republican armies one at a time. An ingenious plan.

In that case, we have no choice but to battle fair and square against the Empire and the Titan by ourselves.

It seems so. But wait, if we play our cards right, we may be able to make the Titan work for us. Now that Basanda's dark power is no longer controlling it, the Titan doesn't care about the Empire or the Republic. If we can take advantage of that, maybe... If I remember correctly, in the ruins.. Isn't there a passage that leads to the stone bridge in front?

If you go this way, take the stairs there and take the road ahead, you can get to the bridge. But do you think you can battle the Imperial army and win?

With the help of Basanda's hint, we may have an opportunity to win this battle. Let's go, Synbios.



When we try to go forth again, we're interrupted again.



Come on, Dantares. The lightning in prison wasn't that bad.

Yes. I was in prison in Malorie Castle. I'm Fynnding, a birdman.

Why have you come to stop us from retaking Aspia Castle?

We must not forget about Lord Tristus. He knows Wilmer has been defeated and has returned to normal.

That's some awful translating right there. Tristus was never brainwashed or anything; simply kept in the dark by his general.

That means Lord Tristus plans to invade Aspia, even if it means sacrificing the life of Algernon.

That's why I came to warn you. He's already made his decision, and is trying to find a way to implement it. I came to Aspia to get information. What the hell is that thing in the moat?

So, it really is there. The Titan truly does exist.

I didn't just see it. I was attacked by it! What's even stranger is that the Imperial army is split up into two regiments. They are standing on both sides of the moat.

The Imperial army is split into two? That's even better for us.

I figured I'd be safe as long as I stayed at the center of the bridge, so I was hovering there for a while. And then...? What did you say? What do you mean “better for us”?

Did you hear that, Synbios? The Titan doesn't seem to react very quickly. We may be able to win!

I'm not sure what makes things so good for us, but I should give you the message I received from Tristus. He wishes to have a military strategy meeting with Lord Synbios and his army in regards to regaining control over Aspia. He would like you to go to Malorie Castle as soon as possible.

He wants us to return to Malorie right away?

If we don't go back right away, Lord Tristus may abandon Algernon and advance his army. I'm begging you!

It is all very possible. Knowing him, Lord Tristus may decide he can't leave things up to us. If we don't get back there quickly, he may start mobilizing his army.

As long as you understand. Alright, I guess my work here is done. I must hurry back to Lord Tristus.

I guess we know what to do. We must return to Malorie at once!

This is really a ton of jumping through hoops to save just one kid. If his dad is willing to sacrifice him to win the war, who are we to argue? Tristus and Margaret can make another nephew for Synbios anyway.



Lady Margaret, please feel at ease. Your brother has proven himself in battle, and has become a great general.

I can never feel at ease. With Synbios being so reckless, like going to Aspia all by himself.

It is either this, or risking Algernon's life with a frontal assault.

I appreciate your intention to rescue my son Algernon. But for all that, following our father's death in Flagard, I... I can't bear to lose my little brother too.

What Margaret is trying to say, is your father Lord Conrad was not the kind of man to take uncalculated risks.

That's funny, because he didn't seem to calculate the risk associated with hiding away money in his city when the risk was his entire country falling apart.

If it was me, that would be one thing. But Margaret can't bear the thought of something happening to her brother. However, if Duke Palsis, Lord Conrad's trusted advisor, travels with you, you must have some chance of victory.

This is a bit ridiculous, considering Synbios has beaten five separate generals (Franz, Spiriel, Garzel, Fafhard, and Braff) and two high priests of Bulzome. The idea that anyone is afraid for Synbios rather than of him doesn't make sense anymore. The funny thing is, if you go around and talk to random NPCs, most of the public acknowledges Synbios as a strong general with an elite army at this point.

To be honest, in this situation, there really is no other choice. Important lords and generals of the Republic... all defeated or betrayed. This seems like the only option.

According to Fynnding, Aspia Castle is occupied by the Imperial army with units on both sides of the moat. In addition to the soldiers... Now that the Bulzome Sect is involved, the Titan patrols the moat. In this dire situation, is there any hope of regaining control of that stout castle?

Lord Tristus, a man renowned for his bravery shouldn't say such cowardly things. The Empire is no match for us...

So, should I advance my army into Aspia, abandoning the life of my son Algernon?

No matter how brave the Malorie army may be, against the Imperial army and the Titan, there is no hope! I would not consider it wise for you to advance your army and risk your son's life for a hopeless cause.

If that's so, what should we do? Or are you saying it's impossible to regain control of Aspia, Duke Palsis?

I have a plan.

While we were in the ruins, Palsis spoke of implementing the... Is that what you're talking about?

With Basanda gone, the Titan will both Imperial and Republican troops. Do you remember my saying that? That would appear to be the case, judging by the information of Fynnding.

Because of that, the Imperial army is split. Half on either side of the moat.

I see. The Titan views both armies as enemies. But we must still defeat them both.

It seems the Titan appears when people cross the moat by the stone bridge. We can take advantage of that!

Using the Titan to defeat the Imperial army. How is it possible to pull that off?

I see. The Titan is slow enough that if we pretend to rescue Algernon, we can lure the Imperial units onto the bridge.

And we can fight a weakened Imperial army with the help of the Titan.

Right, but if the horrid thing appears, it will attack not only the Imperials, but you as well!

We will use water to defeat the Titan.

:thetris; Use water to defeat...? What do you mean by that, Palsis?

We will send a second battalion to open the spillway on the dam. The force of the water will destroy the Titan in the moat.

What a brilliant idea. Even the Titan can't withstand the immense force of the water when it is released from the dam!

What about the decoys? They can hide behind the wall of the bridge, but how will they know when the water has been released?

We'll send a smoke signal when we release the water. If they hurry, they will be safe from the water's fury.

There is another Imperial unit on its way, but they are still far south of Storich. I recommend we hurry, Tristus.

I wouldn't worry about those reinforcements. Their general is probably too busy worrying about what his dad thinks of him to be competent in any measure.

I entrust you with the future of our Republic, Lord Synbios. Wrest control of fair Aspia from those Imperial swine!

I know quite a lot about the dam, so I will guide you to it! Leave the release of the dam and the smoke signal to me.



And there's our last character. However, he was left out of voting due to the fact that he can't actually participate in any fights other than the parallel side battle during the last fight. It's confusing, but you'll see.



Not a bad idea! Since we've recruited everyone there is to get in scenario 1, we can only pick up one mercenary.






It's the same four classes as the characters from Creed's Mansion in Shining Force 2. If we wanted to be smart and safe, we'd pick up the Karna the priest Twiggy the monk. However, we're going for cool points and picking up Tyrin Piper the mage instead.

Amusingly enough, Elric is just as useless as his namesake from Shining Force 2. There are zero sword enemies on the map where he'll show up, and his extra movement just isn't useful compared to Dongo's axe.



Wait, what the hell, Fynnding? Those are terrible stats. What the hell are yo-



Oh, much better.



And for the final piece of preparation, we're going to boost Fynnding's critical and luck as much as possible. Those of you who have played this game before know what I'm planning.

NEXT TIME: The bonus dungeon, for real!

inthesto
May 12, 2010

There is a point where we needed to stop, and we have clearly passed it.

BUT LET'S KEEP GOING AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS!


The Shining Force: Part 5


Wandering beastman who fled the Empire as a child. Became an ally of Synbios after being impressed by his determination.
Pros: High movement
Cons: Bad stats, bad weapon choices
Support: Counter Up
Thoughts: What on earth is going on here? After the likes of Zylo and Gerhalt, Frank is absolutely terrible in comparison. His attack and defense stats are lackluster, his choice of weapons doesn't do much to help his poor stats or give him useful criticals, and his only advantage of high mobility is mostly useless by the time you get him. He doesn't even get a useful support. Easily one of the worst characters in Shining Force 3.


Rogue ninja from the distant west where the ninja organization “Momochi” resides. Joined the Synbios army after they were able to see through his disguise.
Pros: Higher physical stats of the ninjas, decent support spells
Cons: Stats still mediocre, low MP
Spells: Sleep, Soul Steal, Attack
Support: Magic and Counter Up
Thoughts: Ninjas have curiously gone from being do-it-all monsters to utility characters with modest stats but swiss army knife capabilities. Hagane is the more straightforward of the two ninjas, though learning Soul Steal and Attack is nothing to be sneezed at. Even though he comes with a dual support, including the incredibly coveted Magic Up, he comes in too late for it to be of any use. Ninja stats are just a little too spread out to be really good in Shining Force 3.


Ninja investigating the Bulzome Sect and the Vandals on orders from Duke Palsis of Lookover. Joins the Synbios army after gaining some very important information.
Pros: Better MP pool of the ninjas, learns Slow and Support
Cons: Even worse physical stats than Hagane, joins extremely late
Support: Magic and Counter Up
Thoughts: Pretty much everything I've said about Hagane also applies to Murasame. Not a bad character, but joins too late with not enough specialized power to be a real contender. Useable if you want, but you don't miss much if you skip him.


Birdman whose mission to save Aspia led him to join the Synbios army. Previously served Lord Tristus of Malorie.
Pros: Starts with rank 3 rapiers, higher defense of the birdmen
Cons: Lower attack than Eldar, Not A Real Character
Support: Evade Up
Thoughts: Considering Fynnding joins you when there's literally only the bonus dungeon and one fight left, it's no surprise that all he does is act as the ersatz commander for a side battle. You can't even bring him into the bonus dungeon. If you compare stats side by side, he's the defensive birdman, trading a few points of attack for some extra defense when compared to Eldar. Not that it makes any difference in any dimension.

Nephrite
Aug 18, 2006
[img]https://forumimages.somethingawful.com/images/newbie.gif[/img]



Lipstick Apathy

Dealing with "it" the way you're planning to is really the only way to deal with the complete bullshit the game throws at you.

inthesto
May 12, 2010

There is a point where we needed to stop, and we have clearly passed it.

BUT LET'S KEEP GOING AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS!


For all the complaining I've heard for Fynnding's fight, I never found it hard. The bonus dungeon is a free handout for leveling everyone up to 11, and even if you don't send any healers to the bench, you can just load everyone up on healing drops. For an extra easy time, send Horst and Obright to the bench.

Bloodly
Nov 3, 2008

Not as strong as you'd expect.

quote:

That's funny, because he didn't seem to calculate the risk associated with hiding away money in his city when the risk was his entire country falling apart.

The money went out as fast as it came in, and that money was used to aid the rest of the Republic, without which the place likely would have fallen.


quote:

You can't even bring him into the bonus dungeon.

Blatant lies, you can get him and still do the bonus dungeon-if I recall, you either never get locked out, or it only locks out after getting the Justice Sword.

Shitenshi
Mar 12, 2013


Since this is essentially a patched JP version and not the official US version, are you going to try and use your characters to legit kill the Titan before unlocking the dam?

Ardeem
Sep 16, 2010

There is no problem that cannot be solved through sufficient application of lasers and friendship.

Shitenshi posted:

Since this is essentially a patched JP version and not the official US version, are you going to try and use your characters to legit kill the Titan before unlocking the dam?

He's playing a patched US version, and unless they changed it since the last time I looked, that still doesn't work.

geri_khan
May 16, 2009

Fucking blocks... I'm gonna climb the shit outta you!


... was the entire scene with Tristus and Margaret in the original translation? I don't remember this stuff at all.

Glazius
Jul 22, 2007

Hail all those who are able,
any mouse can,
any mouse will,
but the Guard prevail.


Fun Shoe

Do those mercenaries join the Force or just give you an extra character on the next map?

inthesto
May 12, 2010

There is a point where we needed to stop, and we have clearly passed it.

BUT LET'S KEEP GOING AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS!


geri_khan posted:

... was the entire scene with Tristus and Margaret in the original translation? I don't remember this stuff at all.

It must be in the original version, since this patch just fixes up a bit of grammar and not much else. Also, Algernon is a plot device that remains relevant until the end of the game, so.

Glazius posted:

Do those mercenaries join the Force or just give you an extra character on the next map?

They're extra characters for a specific map that you can't use otherwise. Because I got all the characters in this scenario, we can only hire one, but if you miss enough characters, you can hire all four. These pseudo-characters will become more and more prevalent as we get to the next two scenarios.

inthesto
May 12, 2010

There is a point where we needed to stop, and we have clearly passed it.

BUT LET'S KEEP GOING AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS!


Part 35: No dialogue this update!



The votes are in! Ratchet, Justin, and Frank have wiggled their way into the main army, taking the places of Obright, Eldar, and Hagane. This is going to make Fynnding's fight a bit rough, but I know how to come in prepared.




Oh yeah, all these stat boosters I've been stockpiling? I think it's time to finally use them. In total, I had 2 lucky cookies, 3 bright honeys, 1 power wine, 2 protect milks, 1 quick chicken, and 3 cheerful breads. I have no idea if using these items pre- versus post-promotion matters in this game, but it's not like I needed the stat boosts any earlier, so why risk it?

+2 HP
+2 HP
+2 Movement
+2 HP, +4 Agility
+5 MP
+2 Luck
+3 MP
+2 Luck
+7 Defense
+4 Attack




Back to the bonus dungeon. No reason to really dawdle around in the first map, so we clear it out in one turn.





Synbios walks through a gate, which slams shut behind him. The first time this happens, he tries to run out the way he came in, but afterwards he just figures out to proceed. Nice little touch there.




Second map is a bit trickier. While the enemies are still easily killed in one hit and fork over a bit more experience, they all have status effects attached to their criticals (paralyze, slow, confuse). On top of that, accessing the boss is a spiral staircase sort of thing. Without Eldar or Fynnding, this means a long climb to the top that is going to constantly get blocked off by respawning enemies.



Like so. This hell hound in the corner had me tied up for about three turns, because I could never kill it on somebody's go with enough time for Cybel to walk past it. The respawning on these maps is strange and I'm not entirely sure how it works, but suffice it to say that the game checks for respawns multiple times per turn and spawning doesn't use up a monster's action, so you can kill the same monster spawn several times in a turn and still get blocked by it.



Once we get Hayward over the speed bump, things go pretty smoothly from there. With a flier, though, this could have been another map finished in one or two turns.



Some real enemies this time! Lizardmen and cerberi aren't tough, but they'll do more than one damage per hit. Griffons are fairly new enemies capable of pain, and as for this boss...



This guy's looking similar to one of Basanda's minotaurs but with +7 DEF and +60 HP. That's no joke, right there.




While the common enemies aren't too dangerous in and of themselves, the fact that they can do actual amounts of damage plus the fact that they respawn infinitely means I don't want to take this fight slowly. It's best to get aggressive, plug the spawns that are close to your starting point, and then bum rush the giga breaker. Once again, the enemies here give much more experience than their normal versions, so this is a decent place to grind up to level 15 or so, but that's unnecessary.





But the nice thing about this mini-boss is he doesn't have nearly as much HP as the real bosses in the game. Especially because we get complete HP and MP refills after each fight.





And that's all she wrote.



We've got a pretty tiny map this time.




The blue dragon is the blip off to the side. While it can put on some physical damage, it's a flier and we're packing three archers. The high wizards look dangerous with their spell sets, but they have strange AI patterns and are generally content to sit and do nothing while you beat them into submission.




The boss, however, is a bit scary. The HP meter doesn't enter ??? territory until >600, and the skull mage has a cool one thousand. He packs Soul Steal 2 which is just a gently caress you from the RNG waiting to happen. His other relevant spell is Tiamat 2, the dark element summon which is also the most power spell in scenario 1. On top of the, the bastard regenerates 15 MP each turn, so there's no hope of burning out his MP and then jumping into the fray. It's not easy getting through this fight with zero casualties.




It is, however, possible. Resist 2 is an integral part in doing it. If you form your army correctly, you can actually catch everyone in a single cast. Unfortunately, I can't do it on the first turn here thanks to that stupid bridge. The other thing to keep in mind about buffs in this game is that casting a buff on somebody who already has it doesn't cause the spell to fail like it did in previous Shining Force games. It merely resets the timer, so you don't have to meticulously plan your formations around getting the most out of your buffs, which makes this fight quite a bit easier.



First thing the skull mage does is try to blast us in one hit.





Resist plus the buddy system means that Tiamat 2 doesn't actually hurt all that much. If we use the buddy system and make sure every character has at least one adjacent ally, we're under zero risk of getting wiped out in one shot.



Just to prove I wasn't kidding about the functionally infinite MP thing.



At one thousand hit points, bringing down the skull mage takes some time. Once again, we're quite lucky this is a map that's sparse on the enemies, because I couldn't imagine taking this guy on as the boss of the last map.



The blue dragon is pretty drat huge and hits for some serious damage, but if we only have to worry about two enemies, it's not a problem.




Horst moves forward to take care of the wizards before they can cause any problems with Spark 3. While I generally have Resist up the entire time, it's still extra damage I don't want to deal with. Especially if they heal the boss. I've never seen them do it, but that's mostly because I kill them as quickly as possible every time.




And the drat skull mage has magic resistance to boot! Not that I'm complaining about 55 damage, but in retrospect, it would have been much smarter to cast Blaze 4 rather than burn up all my MP so quickly for marginally more damage.




That's a bit better. I'm guessing the skull mage is mostly packing fire resistance.



Wait a second, where the hell is he aiming?







After Dantares and Cybel finish the first wizard, I'm taking no chances and blasting the second one as soon as possible. This also connects Grace to the two knights, protecting them from a stray Tiamat.



Now that all the not-so-trash mobs are gone, it's a question of keeping everyone packed together, healing as necessary, and beating away at that life bar.





Except that Tiamat isn't the only spell the skull mage uses. Soul Steal 2, as mentioned, is an instant kill spell with an area effect. It's nice that when it misses it still deals some damage, so your turn isn't completely wasted. With the magic resist of everybody boosted, the damage is trivial.



Unless, of course, this happens.





Time to reset and start the battle over! Like hell I'm redoing that second map.



Second try. Synbios walks right past the skull mage and makes sure the other enemies have short life expectancies.



Without any affinities and my magic resistance boosted, the enemy's Spark 3 is hilariously impotent.



Blue dragons also have an ice elemental critical, but with all the magic resistance I'm slinging around, it's actually far less dangerous than their regular attack. You lucked out this time, Cybel!



All the damage that the people who busted past skull mage is taking gets fixed up with a single cast of Aura 2. Having elemental affinities in this game is awesome, especially when it affects your healing.



Irene takes no chances and refreshes everybody's resistance.



Even in a solo cast, Tiamat can't wipe out Frank in one hit. It would have killed somebody with fewer HP, but I'll take it.



Minor note, we can't pop open this chest during the fight. It only opens after we win.




Grace and Hayward finish off the dragon, and now we're almost ready to take down the skull mage.



There, now we're completely ready.





Only one turn later, and we've already taken the skull mage into visible HP range. As I've commented in the Shining Force 2 Challenge Mode LP, you don't really know how much damage you're capable of doing until you're forced to.




For some reason, Frank has weapon advantage over the skull mage. I don't know why either.






Another turn later, and he goes for the Soul Steal 2 again. Thankfully, he doesn't kill anyone whose supports I care about. Irene also is no longer important, since the boss is currently down to about 225 HP. Yeah, when you focus the entire army on a single guy, the hit points disappear quickly.




Grace also gets weapon advantage, but that's no surprise since ankhs seem to get advantage of undead and other unholy stuff.



Enough of this. Let's just get it over with.




Not a bad haul. Too bad money doesn't matter anymore, and this is a horribly, harrowing way to farm experience.

The justice sword has one point of attack over Synbios' current phoenix sword. It also trades the fire/ice/wind elemental resistances for lesser resists in light/dark, and swaps out the phoenix summon for a new critical skill. Honestly, I'll skip it since the summon is far more valuable.



While the skull mage is a good deal harder than the real final boss, the final fight as a whole is much more difficult than this one.



Now this baby is the real prize. It gives the holder access to Tiamat, which I've already mentioned has the highest base damage in the game. It also grants +5 defense, +1 movement, and +2 luck. The luck is great for better chances on Soul Steal, which Noon has. Not to mention, Noon's dark affinity is only slightly worse than his ice affinity, and Tiamat is dark elemental. The problem is that Noon has specialized in wands due to Wendigo.



Oh, who am I kidding. I'm not above grinding weapon ranks on those useless skeletons in the first bonus map.



Hahaha, just look at that loving base power.






And some more bonus weapon ranks because I was getting bored while grinding for Noon.

NEXT TIME: End game!

Nephrite
Aug 18, 2006
[img]https://forumimages.somethingawful.com/images/newbie.gif[/img]



Lipstick Apathy

I'm happy you'll be moving on to the next game soon, because it's such an amazing step up in terms of graphical and general quality from this one.

Hoss Corncave
Feb 13, 2012


Nephrite posted:

I'm happy you'll be moving on to the next game soon, because it's such an amazing step up in terms of graphical and general quality from this one.

And you get to see the best characters in the game.

inthesto
May 12, 2010

There is a point where we needed to stop, and we have clearly passed it.

BUT LET'S KEEP GOING AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS!


Part 36: The Titan of Aspia

Before we pull the trigger on the next fight, it's time to do some last minute housecleaning.








We also buy out all the rings we previously hocked and a bunch of healing drops.



I also had a pair of brave apples lying around, which give an instant level up when you use them. Both of them go to Kahn, who will be needing the extra MP he gets from them.



The water from the dam is the key to protecting the moat and defeating the Titan. I'm sure the Imperial army is guarding the site. Be extremely cautious as you proceed with your mission.

Once we release the water, we'll send up a signal. Make sure you don't miss it. The success of this mission depends on our teamwork. To be safe, let me give this to you.



If you retreat for any reason, use that and I will return here.

Let us proceed as well, Synbios.

The whistle isn't an actual item. It merely covers the plot hole of “How does Fynnding know if Synbios casts Egress?”



Onward, to victory.




It seems the Titan is at the bottom of the moat. If it were to get out and run amok, the capital would be doomed.

Hey, I see someone back there!



Oh come on, that's all you're going to hit me with?

Aren't you Synbios?



When you defeated Basanda, we were unable to cross the moat, but it seems there is a secret entrance.

We've slipped past your defenses and beaten your ace! We'll take back Aspia next, right after we defeat you!

Even without Basanda I will crush you Republicans and take my true place as Emperor! And I'll even keep my promise to Tristus if he keeps his!



Even without the Titan, we far outnumber you. You can't win, let alone rescue your precious nephew! As soon as the Synbios army moves, close in and intercept them! Until the Bulzome reinforcements arrive, we can't draw in more forces from the reserve. We must hold them back!

Just as I thought. Prince Arrawnt will sacrifice his army to prevent us from rescuing Algernon.

He thinks he needs the ransom to prevent the Republican armies from unifying. He hasn't seen through our ploy!

Hold on until Fynnding's signal, and keep casualties to a minimum. Understood? We're relying on you!

Elsewhere:




They arrived, ignorant that Prince Arrawnt sent us here, on a tip from Basanda. And now they will die! Prince Arrawnt was skeptical, so our force might be small, but it's more than enough to handle scum like you!

As expected, a unit defends the dam. However, we should be able to handle this with the remainder of our force. Crush the defenders on the dam! We must release the water to help the Synbios force in their battle!






So, we've got two concurrent battles. The main army is stuck on a bridge with a small pack of enemies on either side. Fynnding and the reserves have to wind through some cliffs to get to the boss and kill him. Both fights feature silver knights, bow knights, sorcerers, and gigas breakers – all stuff we've seen before.

If you're unaware of the reserve fight coming up, then Fynnding's battle is a complete ordeal that requires some hardcore cheesing. However, I'm in the know, which is why I spent time leveling everybody off of those skeletons in the bonus dungeon. As a result, the reserve fight is not too hard, though serious enough that it merits stocking healing drops.



And Piper the mage shows up! He only has a monster's stat sheet, but he comes packing a few healing items and a good set of spells. While he's no Masqurin/Noon combo, he's got some legitimate firepower. As for the other mercenaries I could have hired, the second best tends to be the dwarf since he packs an axe and this fight is littered with lances. Twiggy the monk is decent due to healing, but lacks much offense, and Elric the knight is just awful since there are no enemy swords and the gigas breaker has an axe.



The enemies at the south end of the bridge are much more aggressive, so it's best to clean them out first. It's three silver knights, two bow knights, and a gigas breaker.




Mopping them up isn't much of a task.




As I pointed out in the last update, I switched Ratchet over to shells. The shell we grabbed in the deals section of Malorie has an extra point of attack over Ratchet's anchor, along with the increased range. Ratchet's attack stat is still in the dumpster, due to poor selection of weapons.

The short of it is that every weapon has a scaling bonus, giving you extra points in attack depending on how many ranks a character has in that weapon. Starting weapons have the low scaling bonus, whereas most mithril weapons have the high scaling. The problem is that Ratchet can only equip anchors and shells, and there are a grand total of zero weapons in those classes that get the high scaling bonus. As a result, Ratchet misses out on +4 attack that everyone else gets easily, dumping him as the lowest damage character on the team by a fair margin.

The range on the shells is more useful than the fact that anchors count as axes, too. We'll be sticking Ratchet as a dedicated archer for this fight.




First thing Fynnding's army runs into is a griffon with a pair of silver knights to follow it up. Considering I have Fynnding, Eldar, Hagane, and Murasame in this group, all those lances spell trouble.



The enemy sorcerers lack any kind of bite. This is Freeze 3, for the record. Noon's cast would triple that damage.





These are enemies we've been grappling with since the start of the chapter. Since they're several fights old by now, they're not doing dangerous amounts of damage.



Frank, on the other hand, is still terrible.



Back with Fynnding, Hagane takes care of business by successfully sleeping both knights. After that, picking them apart is child's play.




The enemies on the north end of the bridge fall in, and Masqurin greets them with a hefty Spark 3. It wipes out two of them and leaves the other three limping.




Which Noon finishes with ease.



The best non-mages go to take care of the southern end of things. In three turns, the Synbios battle is pretty well under control.



The gigas breaker has a lot of beef to him, but can has zero tricks. It's just a matter of whittling down that HP.




Well then, Piper. He's not Noon and you have no supports, but that's still some good damage! Hard to argue with this.



And with Murasame finishing off that second silver knight, Fynnding is now at zero risk of getting swarmed by enemies. Magic, ladies and gentlement.




Meanwhile, Synbios' level 3 critical barely matches Noon's Freeze 3 for damage. Mages in this game really are insane.



Okay Penn, this is your one shot. Let's see what you've got.




I... can't really argue with a penguin that farts fire. Those stats may be crap, but Penn has redeemed himself just a little bit.




On our fourth turn, a guest shows up so Synbios and company don't get too comfortable.



I like to think it's raising the roof.

Ah, you have shown yourself, Titan Warrior. Now, the Synbios army must retreat as well, or face annihilation!

So what if the Titan is here! Before you run away, return Prince Algernon to us!

What? Are you trying to destroy yourselves? Troops, I command you! Until Synbios retreats, we must hold the field!






The Titan behaves a lot like the golem. It cycles through three attacks. The first is seen here, Boomerang. It will attack an entire row of the map, enemies and allies alike.





The second is Hammer, which will attack all units in a 3x3 square. I believe both Boomerang and Hammer are physical damage, so nothing to be terrified of.





The last is X-Spark, which has massive range and area of effect, though it behaves like a summon in terms of damage. Due to the nature of the map, X-Spark isn't much to worry about, as it's difficult to have an isolated character.



It's also possible to strike back at the Titan, and it occupies a 3x3 space, you can set up quite a few people to beat on it. The problem is that it has a boatload of hit points, and in the US version, you can't actually kill it. After a certain amount of damage, you will disable its arms, getting rid of the Boomerang and Hammer attacks, but who wants to deal with X-Spark every turn? In the Japanese version, if you toast all 6000 of its hit points, the Titan will die and drop 3000 gold that you're never going to use.

But I know how eager everyone is to see the end of the game, and so let's not waste our time doing that.



The enemies at the southern end respawn, but aren't very aggressive. If we stick around the titan, then it takes them two or three turns before they decide to run up and attack. As long as Grace and Irene can keep healing damage from the Titan, we're at no real risk.



Fynnding and company continue to plow through. Even the odd enemy critical here and there doesn't slow them down. Level 11 with mithril weapons and a few healing drops is plenty to get through this battle without a sweat.



Piper's Blaze 1. Not bad!



How does the titan stand up to a dark dragon?



Well enough. If only Tiamat had another pair of heads.



Dantares' critical against the titan is funny, because it involves him galloping across water.



But the thing has really high defenses. Even if I had the option to kill the titan, it would be a total slog that wastes all my resources.



Picking up that life ring from the item shop was a good move, as Masqurin really needs that extra defense.




The special critical from the mace we picked up for Horst a while ago. 170 HP all gone in one go, god drat.



Penn can't hit worth a poo poo without criticals.



But two or three turns after the titan shows its face, Fynnding and company have made it to the gigas breaker with minimal hiccups. Now, the easy way to do this would be to keep the rest of the army idle while Fynnding flies up to the gigas breaker. Fynnding starts with rank 3 in rapiers, and the level 3 critical is an instant kill. Just save before Fynnding attacks and reset until you get the instant kill, and the map is over in a jiffy. But I'm not lame, and this fight really isn't all that difficult.



Even with the weapon advantage, the master ring (which gives +10 critical), and the shine rapier (which gives another +5 critical), I never actually got a critical. If you noticed, I gave Eldar a master ring too, to help trigger zero count from her wing. Oh well, nothing wrong with beating the guy the olda fashioned way.



Eldar still hits relatively hard.



And the abundance of sword users means we rip apart the gigas breaker quickly.



On the other side of things, X-Spark is hilariously impotent when you've got a ton of people huddled together.



In true hero fashion, Fynnding finishes off the gigas breaker.




However, on this occasion we need the power of a tsunami! So, we must bend the rules... Here we go!





The dam opens, and a rush of water pours out.



Now, we worry about Lord Synbios' force. I'll hurry over to Aspia Castle. Follow as fast as you can!



Yes. It sounded like victory.

Oh ho! It seems Fynnding and the others were successful. Very successful! Get everyone to safety, Synbios. Hide behind the embankment of the bridge before the flood hits!

I now have until the end of the current turn to cram everyone onto the north end of the bridge. Anyone who's out in the middle will get swept away and die. If Synbios is out there? Yeah, you have to do everything over.

Take a guess how I know this.



Naturally, before the turn ends, Ratchet gets caught by a Boomerang. Whatever Ratchet, you suck and we won't need you in the next fight.





And down goes the Titan!



The Titan... said to be unequaled in might... and my Imperial army... have been wiped out?

That's right, Prince Arrawnt. We used the Titan as a decoy to bring you here!

I see. By compromising the dam... The smoke signal we saw earlier.. drat, I've been tricked!

Surrender and cede control of Aspia, Arrawnt, and I'll let you live!

I'll never surrender. My strongest troopers are still intact, and reserves will arrive in a matter of minutes! Once I destroy you and the rest of the Republican scum, I can usurp my father's throne and get rid of anyone who would rule in my place. Neither my father, nor my brothers will be able to stop me.

Prince Arrawnt has lost it. He not only wants to stop the Republic... He wants to destroy anything that gets in his way, including his family. The dark power must be twisting his mind.

NEXT TIME: The real final fight!

vibratingsheep
Nov 2, 2013

Fudou, Gunzou. The Face of the Franchise Killer. 2004.


What was Arrawnt's Japanese name, again? Was it Arrogant? Would anyone actually miss Prince Arrogant if he was gone?

Also, please put Mirage Dance Party gif somewhere convenient to find, I feel like sword raving right now

Bloodly
Nov 3, 2008

Not as strong as you'd expect.

quote:

In the Japanese version, if you toast all 6000 of its hit points, the Titan will die and drop 3000 gold that you're never going to use.


There's a catch you (possibly) missed. If I remember my reading right, the Elbesem Orb is supposedly required after the arms are taken out to damage it further.

Van Dine
Apr 17, 2013



vibratingsheep posted:

What was Arrawnt's Japanese name, again? Was it Arrogant? Would anyone actually miss Prince Arrogant if he was gone?

According to a quick search, his Japanese name was "Aroganto". So yes, he was Prince Arrogant. What sort of parent gives their kid a name like that?

inthesto
May 12, 2010

There is a point where we needed to stop, and we have clearly passed it.

BUT LET'S KEEP GOING AND SEE WHAT HAPPENS!


vibratingsheep posted:

What was Arrawnt's Japanese name, again? Was it Arrogant? Would anyone actually miss Prince Arrogant if he was gone?

Also, please put Mirage Dance Party gif somewhere convenient to find, I feel like sword raving right now

I added it to the OP, but I'll put it in this post too:



And yes, Arrawnt's original name was Arrogant. There's some real dead giveaways in names, such as Domaric -> Dominate, Crewart -> Cruelty. There's more, but they'd be spoilers for scenario 2.

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Ardeem
Sep 16, 2010

There is no problem that cannot be solved through sufficient application of lasers and friendship.

Van Dine posted:

According to a quick search, his Japanese name was "Aroganto". So yes, he was Prince Arrogant. What sort of parent gives their kid a name like that?

That'd be Emperor Dominant, who hates his kids.

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