Board 8 > To gain +3 to inspiration, BCT plays Tales of Berseria. *spoilers as I go*

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Peace___Frog
12/28/21 10:49:15 PM
#51:


Eleanor hell yeah

(No further commentary, thank you for the write ups)

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Alanna82
12/29/21 11:04:18 AM
#52:


AFAIK Nebraskon was held this year, at least my husband said it was. Christina Vee has also been to that one.
I live in Nebraska, so the volleyball thing earlier in the topic made me sad.

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BlueCrystalTear
12/30/21 11:07:32 PM
#53:


Alanna82 posted...
AFAIK Nebraskon was held this year, at least my husband said it was. Christina Vee has also been to that one.
I live in Nebraska, so the volleyball thing earlier in the topic made me sad.

Anime Milwaukee is going on in 2022 after taking 2021 off (I think they did a couple of virtual panels). I don't think I'll be able to go since I'm exempt from masks (sensory overstimulation caused a severe panic attack) so I'm going to ask them to roll over my ticket to 2023. They'll most likely oblige because I'm "looking out for the safety of the congoers."

Keep in mind this was our first title and Nebraska has won five, but so sorry it had to be at your expense. I would have been devastated if the girls couldn't pull it off. That playoff run was the most magical sporting thing I've seen since the Packers' last Super Bowl. Only this time I was so invested in the players. Dana, Sydney, and Grace had a mission from day one.

Peace___Frog posted...
Eleanor hell yeah

(No further commentary, thank you for the write ups)

First off: You're welcome.

tbh, the most fascinating character at present. It's a breath of fresh air to have an open henchwoman as a party member. Instead of a turncoat/spy or someone playing both sides, the party gets someone to manipulate into changing sides. I like how a "do-gooder" archetype is working for some VERY vile people. I'm looking forward to seeing her turn when she finds out:
1) That Artorius himself caused The Opening so he could later close it and brand himself a hero
2) That Artorius has no care for whatever sacrifices are necessary - ESPECIALLY someone like Eleanor
3) That the Abbey is responsible for whether people are happy or miserable via dictatorial subjugation
4) Whatever the hell Innominat really is

She already knows the Abbey smuggled and dealt an opiate to make money off dying addicts. She's starting to see Velvet and Rokurou as people and malaks as equals, but you can't cure xenophobia overnight. She also knows that the Abbey doesn't like her aligning with daemons to survive. She's not actually a traitor, but perception is reality: The fact that the Abbey branded her as such is willing it into reality. She feels caught and that will only worsen. She wears her emotions openly, which shows weakness, and fails to see others' perspectives. If someone's different than her, they must be wrong. I foresee that changing in the near future, since she's going to have herself a growth arc that's going to rid her of the hypocrisy of her wanting to do good despite her innate xenophobia, a sadly common trait in modern society.

It seems like they're taking turns being fascinating, though Magilou and Bienfu are ALWAYS fascinating. This party is the deepest and most consistent since Abyss (see above for Eleanor):
Velvet is a badass. She thinks logically and doesn't like wasting time. Turning her into a therion has rendered her sense of taste useless. She's out for blood for the death of her brother - a clearly traumatic event that caused her personality to change dramatically. She will stop at nothing to achieve her goals and has no regard for consequences others pay. She's clearly suffering from depression and it's unclear what she does to alleviate it. With her, respect is earned, and once you betray her trust, that's it.

Rokurou is a troll. He's so subtle with how he needles people, and yet it always works. It's miraculous how his ancestor came from Japan and brought the Bushido code with him. He's a typical samurai who's loyal, kind, and protects the weak. He's stubborn and laser-focused on his objectives, plus repays his debts in droves. He's very attached to his reject Stormhowl and would give life and limb to retrieve it. His rivalry with his brother is spectacular, so I'm glad Shigure got to live so they can fight another time.

Magilou is borderline insane in the most glorious way possible. She's an incredible storyteller, one for embellishing details and emoting the parts of WOE. She's a self-proclaimed witch, saying witch stuff like "Eye of newt and mushroom spore. Tender parts of prickleboar!" She messes with people, whether intentionally or not. It's unclear HOW she became a witch or how she could repossess malaks. She felt very betrayed by Bienfu and doesn't feel she owes debts to people. She's traveling for the fun of it - or so it seems. I'm curious if she's paired with a villain that isn't Eleanor. (Oscar isn't paired to anyone...)

Laphicet is a freed slave who doesn't understand how autonomy works, and is learning to make his own decisions the hard way. He's learning how to have feelings. He's learning how to live for himself and what there is out there. He's also a navigational enthusiast who loves his gadgets and his books. He's good-hearted and loyal and really appreciates Velvet for severing him from Villain Teresa. He also has insane amounts of malak power - enough to challenge a god, which is why Artorius wants to kill him.

Eizen is the least complex so far. He's a malak who's the First Mate of a feared pirate crew and has connections all over the world. He's scouring the seven seas to find his Captain, and wants to kill Melchior for his involvement in that disappearance. He's a thinker and enjoys sharing stories over a pint. He insists on being a puglist since it's the most pure. He has a "Curse" that may just be coincidence. I don't really have much else to say. He's kinda forgettable, in large part because of how strong the other five are.

I will update my thoughts later in the game and at the end of it, of course.

Not much of an update today, which is why I thought I'd do all that instead. Just went through the marsh. Here are a few points:
-It took a bit to activate it, but I learned Annihilating Crash. We finally get a cool Mystic Arte with a cut-in instead of the little Level 1 ones. Since those activate so often, I can see why they're abbreviated. But I really prefer the fucking awesome stuff like Indignation, Fortune's Arc, Ancient Catastrophe, etc.
-Juggling skunks with Artes is FUN! (...poor things.)
-I happen to like this "Charlie's Angels" winquote. Also the one where Magilou talks about hers "getting as long as she wants it." So... her doll is a dildo?
-Why are Dire Foes and Code Reds so weak? The Abbey's scared of them... why? Just take 'em out!

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Alanna82
12/31/21 2:50:45 PM
#54:


Eleanor is my husbands favorite character.

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MysteriousStan
12/31/21 4:35:56 PM
#55:


Eleanor might be my least favorite Berseria character? Which isn't a slight to her at all but more says a lot about how much I love Berseria's cast!
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BlueCrystalTear
12/31/21 9:32:43 PM
#56:


We'll see how I rank everyone at the end of it. I have a lot of development to see still. It'll be tough matching Abyss's group, which has four who are incredibly strong, one who's great, and one who sucks. I think you can probably guess who that last one is.

I learn about dual-layered barriers and hope those are some sort of maze-type thing. I really miss there being puzzles in games like this, because just hitting switches to progress is boring. Eleanor is skeptical about the Reaper's Curse affecting coin flips... and about Laphicet seeing the compass as proof of manhood. I don't buy that last part, either, but apparently something about malak wavelengths affects things like that. It's different than science in the world I live in, that's for sure. And Eleanor's skepticism and ignorance is getting her to snitch to the Abbey. She also wants to steal the coin because it's a priceless object that she regurgitates facts about, including that it bears the picture of a prior Tales villain, Dhaos.

Apparently "ugly" is enough description to help Laphicet know what flower he's looking for. It's so subjective... as is "deceitful coexistence." Eleanor is starting to realize that there's common ground between her and the others. She also tells Bienfu that no, they're not married... LOL, this never gets old! And there's a lot of overlap despite this being a bunch of misfits. The group also shares common enemies, which is precisely why this bunch is traveling together. Selfish coexistence, eh? They're all self-serving, yet their goals overlap. It creates an interesting dichotomy that makes for a good party. ALSO: Magilou's doll looks like a Minecraft creeper, which makes this little winquote sketch with Laphicet and Eleanor all the funnier xD

I've been keeping Magilou in my party solely for the winquotes. I've also kept Eleanor in because her Inspiration cures paralysis, which I've been afflicted with a lot in this area. Laphicet starts to sync with his compass after I beat up two very weak thugs, and that's a sign that there's some really weird stuff happening around here. Velvet thinks it's the daemon. She's probably right.

At any rate... I'll see you all next year!

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BlueCrystalTear
01/03/22 10:57:42 PM
#57:


Bowl games down.

Other shit down.

Here we go.

I immediately enter what's blatantly an arena and end up in a fight with a boss called Mr. Bugglesworth. Magilou is spot-on with these names! We beat the crap out of it and Laphicet, despite seeing what it really is, wants to keep him. Boys will be boys. Velvet relents after seeing his eyes and destroys the barrier, but it's still confusing why the Abbey would keep it alive - perhaps since it would let them monopolize sale'tomah flowers? Perhaps this flower makes an opiate just like vermilion ore? Velvet breaks the barrier and we collect the flowers, which are a pretty purple color paired with brown that's... not really all that ugly, honestly. I've seen uglier.

Eizen also confronts Eleanor on her Karening about doubting the Reaper's Curse. He's lost forty-nine men in three years. That's a LOT for a ship that has a crew of like 15 pirates. The turnover rate is higher than Target. Eleanor does more sketchy stuff by asking about what kind of daemon Velvet is, and suddenly realizes that Velvet could maybe cure daemonblight since they turn human after she eats their souls. The problem is that they often die because of it, and I find it interesting that Eleanor is so curious about this. It lends credence to the idea that she's Niko from the early game. I also see that both her and Laphicet have green eyes, which are different than their earlier counterparts' brown... makes me think that would have been induced by wizardry that changed their mana signatures.

Laphicet thinks the bug is a new species, which leads to an incredibly dumb argument between Rokurou and Eizen about whether it's a stag beetle or rhino beetle, and I'm like... it's a fucking beetle. Does it matter what adjective there is? Geez, guys! I find out that sale'tomah tastes incredibly numbing in all the wrong ways, and... sadist Magilou made Bienfu drink it for her. My, she's mean, but I love her for it. Also, the two goons I KOed earlier are talking about us... and a wanted malak in Lothringen. I also run into Zaveid, who taunts Eizen into pursuing him with Aifread's trinket and "pointy-beard." Whether that's Aifread or a villain, I don't know... until I get back to town, when Laphicet says Benwick said it was Aifread. Interesting. So he "just found" that but... is baiting Eizen with it? And Zaveid's the wanted malak, eh? I have no idea what foolishness Eizen is getting into.

The rest of my playtime tonight was all weapons management and expeditions to Teepo Island (BAZONGAS!)... and B8NFLL draft stuffs whilst playing and checking in on my friend who's having a rough time.

I did leave to the port and get some poetry from Magilou about frogs croaking in the ocean, which was amazing. Apparently Vortigern was a waste of money since the continents are drifting together, which is obviously a Zestiria reference since I'd presume there's ruins there instead. Nice of them to give some lore for the 10% of players who actually enjoyed Zesty. I would give that game a chance, but... I hear Sorey is insufferable, Rose is a "Mean Girl," the rest of the cast is shoveled aside, the gameplay prohibits a good story, and playing through it makes one want to gouge their eyeballs. I heard Hideo Baba was fired for ruining the game to make Rose the heroine because he was fucking her seiyuu. Is that true? Or just a rumor?

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BlueCrystalTear
01/06/22 12:13:56 AM
#58:


Benwick immediately blasts us for not following Eizen, because Zaveid is being lured into a trap by Melchior. During this scene:
1) Eleanor shows that we will definitely have to kill her later if things keep up the way they are - but how do we sever Laphicet from her? Her loyalty is with the bad guys still. She's a blind, useless puppet.
2) Velvet is pretty sure that Captain Aifread is why Eizen got so worked up, and we're going to save him... unless of course Aifread is the bait and is really in on the plan.
3) Velvet is sharp and kind. Eleanor... actually isn't. Calling Velvet "daemon" like it's discriminatory when she JUST FUCKING SAVED YOUR LIFE is... not good. She's still a xenophobe through and through.
4) Benwick's voice acting isn't that convincing tbqh... and Laphicet's is awkward here, but I think that's deliberate. It's worse than it was when he first turned up, however, so if the idea is for him to sound more and more normal...
5) Eleanor's face when she took the sale'tomah juice was GREAT. Her reaction in the skit afterward was, too... as was Velvet forcing it down Magilou when she deserved it. The sweet taste of revenge for exposing secrets to an enemy. Eleanor outright lied to us about her end of the deal, after all.

Now there's the point of the filler quest: To lead us to the REAL quest here, to the Tower of Terror Lothringen we go!

Laphicet calling Magilou out for traveling with us even though she doesn't care... I think she actually does since this group is so fun for her! It's for the lulz. Eleanor continues to show her ignorance and xenophobia. I really don't like her right now, but she's got that growth arc starting. We also get info from the weapon dealer's wife that Zaveid knew we'd follow him. Intriguing! Also intriguing: Eleanor outright saying that you can't really work with someone until you understand their thoughts and feelings. ELEANO, a xenophobe, said this!

Magilou gives us a tour of, y'know, just being one of the geysers. Embellishing as usual. Love her for that. (I believe her that crabs or octopi can be shot out of there - and boy is this beautiful). We then catch up with Eizen and he explains that he was trying to "cure" the Reaper's Curse. Aifread set him straight: You can't cure it, but you can find your way in life with it and weather the storm. And that's why Eizen signed aboard and became first mate. However, Velvet hears a spy... Zaveid was listening in... and him and Eizen both act like stubborn meatheads regarding each other. It would benefit them to work together. I mean, that's what I'd try to do, and the asshole would simply reject me because I'm not like him. People are... people.

Eleanor tells us that the Tower of Lothringen (probable LOTR reference, obvs) is a training ground of sorts for initiation. The Abbey discriminates by assigning a class based on one's mana signature and innate abilities, and she gives us the usual bullshit of people "joining the Abbey to protect people from daemons and save the world." When, uh, reality is the opposite: People need protection from the Abbey's tyranny and the Abbey is destroying the world. I really hope I get to kill her if she doesn't change. She's the xenophobic Karen even still, and she blames her issues on us "deviants." Take a look in a mirror, sweetie. Maybe you SHOULD take your own advice and try to understand us. Because you're not really trying. We're at least trying to understand Zaveid and his motives but don't have enough information yet. Eleanor affirms my suspicions by saying that Aifread should've rejected Eizen on the basis of the Reaper's Curse, not trying to understand why someone like that would be taken in. She may present herself as a nice girl, but she's deeply vicious and evil... and may not be aware of this.

I get to the tower - it's tall! - and the trap isn't even hidden. It's so obvious. Eleanor is also so obvious with her prying that Eizen calls her out - YES - and then tells her Aifread vanished a year ago. Went to fight Zaveid apparently and by the time Eizen figured it out, there was a pendulum and the remnants of a fight. Melchior took him out of Azkaban not long after. Eleanor was investigating a huge amount of casualties when Melchior told her to stop - he was so obviously hiding something. Eleanor would be stupid to not question her superiors at this point, and yet she still questions us instead.

I see someone being crucified as I approach the center. The bait, likely Aifread. Eizen goes up to chat and they seem like old friends... until Eizen lies and says he wrote to his little brother... who doesn't exist. Turns out bad guy Melchior was conjuring some illusions. Another one - some babe with a parasol (a Zestiria character, I think?) - shows up and is shot by Zaveid... which causes Melchior's female malak to turn into a wyvern. The two guys follow suit and Melchior blames the Reaper's Curse. Zaveid chases after the bad guy while we get stuck on cleanup. Eleanor openly wonders why an exorcist would create a daemon... just how indoctrinated is this xenophobic Karen? For fuck's sake, EXORCISTS CREATED DAEMONS TO BEGIN WITH. We take out the beasts but Zaveid saves the last with his Siegfried gun, thinking we're cold-hearted killers... but, uh, Melchior commandeers the power of the gun for himself and we all run after the bastard. Zaveid is impulsive and sees no regard for consequence. There's no point in "saving" something that will only kill many later. This is exactly why I thought Velvet should've killed Villain Teresa when she had a chance, for example. Kill one monster now, save thousands of people later.

Melchior gets away, but Zaveid tells the story of how he and Aifread had a fight for the ages - and that Zaveid was trying to capture him for the Abbey. But Aifread handed Siegfried over when Melchior showed up... and now Zaveid wants to get the gun back to him. Sadly, Aifread probably isn't long for the world now that Melchior got what he wanted out of him thanks to Zaveid's stupid impulses. He showed his hand and paid the price. He says he won't kill... but maybe he needs to learn that sometimes, you have to. It's like Tear said in Abyss: "It's not like I'm killing people because I want to!"

Henchwoman Eleanor is VERY torn here. She defends Melchior as "an exemplary man" even though he's pure evil and just turned a malak into a daemon because she was regaining consciousness. She went from saying "If you want to save Aifread, join us!" to Zaveid to... defending bad guys. She thinks the Abbey is infallible. Typical xenophobia. "We are perfect and everybody else sucks." What a Karen.

After a detour through the East Laban Tunnel that only amounted to a few items, I head back to Reneed. Theory is that the gun amplifies Zaveid's malak powers... and that malaks amplify Melchior, who's certainly a coward. There's a skit about parasol girl, who I only got a brief glimpse at but she made Eizen hesitate... and then I get crazy gossip theories out of Velvet and Eleanor. Okay then.

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Mewtwo59
01/06/22 1:16:16 AM
#59:


I don't know if they intended you to have played Zestiria beforehand, because a lot of the stuff in that last segment is either something you'd already know from Zestiria or it references something from Zestiria. In fact, Lothringen is a returning location from Zestiria, but it's known as Lohgrin there.

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BlueCrystalTear
01/06/22 12:13:18 PM
#60:


I would guess they did intend on having me play Zestiria first, given how I was pretty much expected to understand malakhim from the beginning. They should've made the two games interchangeable - you could play them in either order... or skip Zestiria entirely like I probably will.

AFAIK Zaveid is in Zesty but I may be wrong on that. I'm not quite sure how long malaks live. For all I know, they could be eternal unless killed by a slave-driver exorcist. Would have been nice to get some lore about that. I don't remember seeing any books about that in the cathedral library when I infiltrated the place. Maybe because the Abbey doesn't know anything other than "They're our slaves because they're magical beings that we're still superior to, which means we can use them."

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skullbone
01/06/22 2:15:14 PM
#61:


As someone who played Zestiria first (and actually enjoyed it more than Bersersia) I think you should give it a try after Berseria.

I know I'm in the minority for actually liking Zestiria but maybe you'd like it more after playing Berseria.

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BlueCrystalTear
01/06/22 8:48:31 PM
#62:


skullbone posted...
As someone who played Zestiria first (and actually enjoyed it more than Berseria) I think you should give it a try after Berseria.

I know I'm in the minority for actually liking Zestiria but maybe you'd like it more after playing Berseria.

I may do that. I'll run a poll here...
https://strawpoll.com/qbxj7ju4c

Keep in mind that it won't be as thorough since I have Zestiria for PS3 as opposed to PC. And, of course, the two "Yes" options will be combined; it's just that there's a second question branching from that choice.

Back to playing...

Thanks to Magilou recognizing Meliodasian script, Laphicet makes a new friend in the village - a boy his age that's just into history books, Videl. And Velvet misremembers things before... Videl sequesters us at the inn to return the favor when some of the goons start looking for us. Odd that Eleanor doesn't sell us out. Whose side is she really on? Because this would be an opportunity to return to the villains... though probably at cost of her life. Velvet would kill her in a snap. That's probably the only reason why.

Videl tells us about Omega Elixirs, which were a thing in the Dark Period. He gives us one ingredient for it and will work on translating the rest.

In between weapon-making sessions, I go out and beat the crap out of some enemies... and get to see Eleanor's Lost Fon Drive for the first time. Another awesome Mystic Arte!

Something something class 4 islands... the Abbey just warns people "DON'T GO THERE!" because they're too afraid to deal with the problem themselves. The people seem to be developing distrust for the Abbey here because the Abbey acts like Team America: World Police and has ulterior motives that aren't actually protecting people. It's good that they're opening their eyes but it's sad that they have to suffer because of the bullshit - it's not like they can do much like they can IRL.This world does not have an Internet, after all, so the Abbey controls information from one continent to the next.

For no reason at all other than "Tales sidequest," I find myself back at Kurogane's forge.... and there's some Long Dau Dust here for Videl. Yes, I saw it on the world map. I'm glad I didn't have to go on a wild goose chase for it. I get it back to Videl... turns out he wants the elixir as a cure for some disorder he has. Poor guy. "Videl" means "to live" and "Laphicet" means "one who lives." Ancient Ispanian, perhaps?

I clear the Class 4 island like it's nothing and note that Videl's next ingredient is over by Hellawes, which no longer has a functioning port thanks to the bomb Dyle set off there. But... that's about it for now. I got things to do tonight.

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Peace___Frog
01/06/22 11:17:44 PM
#63:


Having only played berseria, i read through a synopsis of zestiria and other than the mentions of zaveid, there was nothing that apparent of much importance related to berseria.

Perhaps the synopsis was too high-level and actually playing the game makes the connections apparent.

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Mewtwo59
01/06/22 11:37:00 PM
#64:


There's something there that's very much important to Berseria, but it's a massive spoiler so I won't go into much detail other than saying that the synopsis must have been extremely high-level if it didn't mention that.

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BlueCrystalTear
01/07/22 11:20:40 PM
#65:


Okay, after a mostly-unnecessary detour that only served to extend the game's length, I can *finally* see Grimoirh. This arc was mostly filler and the scene at Lothringen could've happened anywhere, especially since I have a feeling I'll be returning to that tower eventually... possibly in Zestiria if I play it. We'll see. I'd like more than three votes >_>

On the way to Yseult, Laphicet is learning more about women that he probably doesn't have the foggiest about. And THEN I get an Eleanor monologue... where she's starting to see the Abbey for the evil it truly is. And hearing Artorius that the knowledge isn't for her... would a peace-loving religious order really obfuscate such things? Rokurou interrupts and Eleanor says her mother and friends were all killed by daemonblight ten years prior, and all she has left is her mother's hand mirror. This is why she's so xenophobic... not realizing she's being used by the guy who caused daemonblight in the first place.

There is no further bullshit and I finally arrive in Yseult. Let's see what kind of company Miss Magilou keeps! I see a pengyon... aka dinner to Eleanor. Magilou does an impression of Grim that doesn't help. And Laphicet is still... confused about women. I love this. A "grown noblewoman" is as vague as "ugly flowers" and he eats it up. Will this be a trend? He asks Magilou about her expression of feelings and this is too deep for her, so she just says they broke.

I like this place. It's very... tropical and relaxing, with no single-digit temperatures like here. The history is troublesome, given how Midgand invaded Southgand using the lumber they'd traded for. Seems like they like fun - "Shenanigand" as a nickname sounds like my kind of place. The biggest flaw is they're up Artorius's butt because, well, they don't know about certain goings-on. Yet. I talk to the priest at the cathedral as Laphicet and instead get Magilou's menagerie of inanity... and she starts flirting with him. He has NO IDEA what to say. Turns out she was fucking with him. Magilou style. I am IN STITCHES. What a prank! He so wanted her, XD! I change to Eleanor... and get Rokurou. Okay, on-screen does not matter. Rokurou can't think of anything. This judgmental priest tries to get him to repent for using his swords. And Rokurou accuses him of being too vague for people to understand, and gets HIM to confess that sin instead. I am AGAIN laughing. This is awesome.

I ask around and nobody knows Grim. She probably keeps to herself in a little hut by the sea. From what is said about young people leaving, something tells me this place isn't around in Zestiria... or is markedly different. A shame. Also shameful: Magilou being serious about goofing around... and then we see Villain Teresa and her baby brother Oscar. We eavesdrop about Oscar's deployment to Palamedes. We'll have to kill him there, probably. He's not very useful to the plot despite his generic JRPG protagonist design (again, I like that he's a villain despite his clear archetype). Teresa unwittingly gives us info about a daemon in Haria and the need to boil the water. But Big Sis just keeps acting like Big Sis. Velvet relates pretty well, having had a little brother and experiencing the same overprotective emotions. And... Eleanor is suspicious as fuck. Nobody trusts her. Laphicet kind of does despite dwelling inside Eleanor - when he can see and hear what she does, but not sense emotions (and he doesn't sleep next to her). He notes how she's different when she sleeps and likes her with her hair down. She also says she's changing her opinion about malakhim... Velvet doesn't believe her. Again.

I find a guy cowering under the rafters about FRUIT WARS. He, uh, likes watermelon, and not in the usual way. He's avoiding this rite of passage to adulthood because he doesn't want to be pelted by melons and coconuts, fearing for his life. Maybe this place isn't so great. The adults call the kids "weak" but they had softer fruit back then. And Velvet convinces him to stand up for himself and tell them to stuff tradition... or go back to poranges. The only other interesting sidequest is the Amenoch bit - the Abbey is "converting" people. Reminds me of a church I know. People can believe whatever works best for them, so dictating them otherwise is barbaric. Yes, I just said that the Catholic Church was the barbaric institution, not who they'd labeled as barbarians. Haria doesn't seem attached to the Abbey at all, so perhaps Grim is there...

A souvenir vendor says he saw Grim, who... is actually a Normin. I knew that since I'd seen her picture on the VA list (Elizabeth Maxwell), but still. When Velvet grills her like it matters (how does it, anyway?), Magilou says that spies are everywhere. Bienfu says Normin essentially power up the abilities of others as opposed to manipulating natural forces. He also dislikes the "common spirits" name because, well, that makes them sound too banal and everyday. Makes sense. So does him crying when Rokurou needles him about it. This party's so fun in even the most random of things.

I up the difficulty to Intense and... I see no difference, even against the Dire Foe. I'm still beating the crap out of everything. Also, EIZEN learns Resurrection... here I thought that'd be Laphicet! I keep back-and-forth between the armor shop and battles because I want that +1 to BG for +5 equipment. The Dire Foe drop here is useless - a 1% increase in drop rates if you have under 100? Come on. I almost never have under 100 equipments even though I purge it constantly. That's how rapidly they already drop. I also use this opportunity to replenish my Katz Souls, seeing as recent chests - including the Class 4 islet - sapped my stockpile. There's this amusing scene where Laphicet asks where babies come from and I can't help but giggle when the girls try to divert the subject... and Eleanor undermines our talk about how much pengyons care for their eggs by saying she enjoys eating them. So you kill the parents and eat them and eat the eggs too? Yikes. I prefer NOT to think my bacon once had a face, thankyouverymuch. A rappig's a rappig and that's all I need to know.

Grim sics a giant lizard on us, which we promptly whomp. No comments thereafter - we cut right to the chase. Grim was an upperclasswoman at witch school, which is where Mags knew her. And the party handles this interaction very badly. Very, VERY badly. Velvet threatens her with the sword and Grim says "Do it." Velvet has a lot of anger in her eyes but she's smart, so she knows she can't lose her only lead on... whatever the hell it was we needed translated. It's been too long since I got it because of the filler arc. Velvet should've offered a deal: "Tell you what. If you have a job for us, we'll do it, and in exchange, the only price we ask is translation. Sound fair?" Grim would be more agreeable to that. What she does agree to is Laphicet's enthusiasm: He wants to learn the tongue for himself because he loves learning... and wants to be useful to Velvet, because she's given him autonomy. Grim will read it for him.

There's a fantastic skit where 1) Bienfu suggests Grim lawyer up to sue the shopkeeper, 2) Grim threatens to mount and stuff Bienfu to sell at a high price, scaring him away, and 3) Eleanor slips up and gets grilled by Grim, too. I am already VERY afraid of crossing Grim. She's one tough customer and nothing gets by her. I like her.

I clear the area and fight against a Code Red Harpy and - guess what? - IT'S AN ACTUAL FUCKING CHALLENGE! I beat her my first go, but it's a struggle, and Eizen having Resurrection certainly helped a lot. That's what I'm talking about! I wish more fights were slugfests like this, I really do, because nothing else on Intense is giving me that. In fact I took out 3-4 enemies at once.... which says something.

That's more than enough for now. Tomorrow, to Haria!

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BlueCrystalTear
01/08/22 10:34:13 PM
#66:


I think the Bienfu Bounce part got cut, but I played that game for a good chunk of time. Didn't quite get any prizes for the "Normal" mode and decided to come back later, since I tired of it. The keyboard works a little better than the controller with this. But you gotta take it a little at a time.

And now I hope for more fights like that harpy. But first... I spent eons trying to manage my equipment. Again, that potentite from the Dire Foe is 100% useless, as a 1% increase is nada especially if it'll never spawn. I'm keeping some older stuff in stock just in case I need an innate skill from it doubled. Doubtful, but you never know. This takes over half an hour, because there's so damn much and I want to make sure I don't lose out on things. I'm too much a perfectionist.

Eleanor claims to be able to "see beyond the surface" but Velvet thinks it's a load of bull, given how xenophobic Eleanor acts. She has that "us vs. them" mentality through and through... and Velvet doesn't like her for it. I explore this place - there's a looming darkness on the horizon. It's very laid-back right now and right along the waves, but something just feels off. The daemon that the villains mentioned earlier lurks nearby... and people here don't trust the Abbey. I have a bad feeling this place is about to get wiped out in some capacity, and they Abbey will use it to further grasp control with the "SEE? This is what happens when you don't follow our lead." bullshit. When we all know that it's the Abbey's fault for leaving people behind. Fuck the Abbey.

Also odd: This place claims to not have many visitors... yet they have an inn. That's a JRPG thing, I guess. Surprised it's not just like a Bed & Breakfast type of household where the mayor or whoever hosts any visitors that happen to drop by. It's just a speck of the map for now, but... we'll see. I also find a boy who talks about choconito gels - chocolate and fish oil, eh? - and putting them in toilets. Well shit! He's certainly thinking humorously, but he doesn't want to grow up to be a buzzkill. Y'know, the Eleanor "LAY DOWN THE LAW - MY LAW" type. I like this continent, honestly, because the people seem more relaxed and fun than the uptight garbage world I live in. I'm... introspecting quite a bit, aren't I? But that's one thing a good JRPG does, and this is a good JRPG.

After finding the last two Katz souls I needed to open the damn chest here (I need to stock up on those), I rest at the inn. There's... only one room, plus a gathering hall. Odd, but... JRPG. Laphicet calls Grim "teacher" which she likes a lot more than "ma'am" - I wonder if the Japanese version was "sensei" or "senpai." In town, I go talk to everyone. Rokurou is glad Laphicet is finding his calling as a cunning linguist. A townswoman hates Villain Teresa for coercing people to give up their traditions of worshiping Amenoch in favor of Innominat, and finds the Abbey barbaric like I do, nice. Another guy mentions Palamedes is Amenoch's temple, which is where Teresa's thug brother Oscar is, alongside the village priestess (and her heir, most likely). Eleanor's self-righteousness believes what Villain Teresa says and recognizes that Velvet would expend anything to achieve her aims... just like Artorius, honestly. Biggest difference is that Velvet is more openly ruthless and less likely to kill if unnecessary. Velvet and Magilou discuss the Abbey's intentions with a hostile takeover... where we'll have to take out that trash.

As Eizen said, Avarost requires intuition to decipher... Grim and Laphicet somehow decipher a passage about eggplants and tomatoes to say "The Nameless Empyrean." This is hilarious at the same time it is important. I forget exactly what this book was, just that we stole it by chance. Been too much game since then. Grim says it's a book of children's counting songs - the religious kind. The drawing looks like a phoenix-like monster among the world's islands... apparently the earthpulses are his lifeblood? The "heads" - the therions - are connected through those earthpulses. Wanna bet that Palamedes houses one of these? We gotta cut it off. I also wonder if Velvet, who's also a therion, inherited the power from something she destroyed at the game's opening. And I still don't know why she didn't figure out that Artorius murdered Celica - and their baby - too. Laphicet suggests that, since the sigil was in the forest... his pet beetle is a therion, and that's why the Abbey was keeping it locked up. Same goes for the thing in the villa's basement. We decide to go check out Palamedes, but are stopped by the innkeeper's daughter... who thinks it's official Abbey business because Eleanor. She pleads to help find the priestess Mahina and her daughter, Kamoana, who she's friends with. A sidequest after re-entering the village indicates that the innkeeper's daughter put Kamoana up to this and doesn't want her friend to die because of her... :/

Velvet interrogates Eleanor about her motives, and Eleanor opens up saying she wants to know what the hell is going on and why Artorius won't tell her anything. She's not sure what she's gonna do when the truth inevitably comes out. And Rokurou dismisses Velvet being a therion as jargon, since that was what Artorius labeled her. Bienfu has this rant about how Velvet and Eleanor are complete opposites, which is hilarious at the same time it's wrong. They're a lot more similar than one might think, which is why they fight: They're both stubborn as hell. Their similarities are just as relevant to their sparring as their opposing philosophies.

I continue through this beautiful area, again going back to town just once to grab some things (knowing this town may not be there when I return). There's... not much here. Cutting coral forming the caves... Bienfu fainting from smelling the bug juice... Magilou punking Laphicet with innuendo-ridden book statements and a subsequent "Waifu Fight" (this one was amusing)... Bienfu writing poems, apparently (Magilou can't always be taken seriously though)... HOLY SHIT HOWLING DRAGON THAT IS THE AWESOME I EXPECT FROM MYSTIC ARTES...

I use the warp pad at the end to go back to town and trim down my again excessive amount of equipment... I'm gonna be here a while. Next time (probably Monday): Oscar dies.

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BlueCrystalTear
01/10/22 1:12:29 AM
#67:


After making sure all my equipment made sense - I counted 175 items in there AFTER cleaning out the excess, yikes - I proceed to the temple. Obviously not playing long tonight but my thing ended earlier than anticipated.

When I arrive at the temple, I see some goons lying around the entrance, either dead or KOed. Seems like the high priestess is putting up a fight. I then hear a daemon eating other goons. This place doesn't seem very large, however. The goal is to save the priestess and her daughter, find out what's going on, and kill Oscar. I enter and... it's an underwater temple. Amazing how they could build this. Eizen says stone blocks in the shallows allowed the area to dry up so they could dig out of devotion for Amenoch. Eleanor isn't sure if that theory works, since it would be too laborious. Velvet stops caring and urges us to keep going, since it honestly doesn't matter how they built it, just that they did. In this case, I agree - the theory stuff is fascinating, though, and I'm glad it was included. Vesperia would never.

Velvet also worries that Amenoch will be here, but Eizen says this was built by humans so it's unlikely that an actual Empyrean would be here, and that their existence is that of legends. Innominat is a special case. But if the other four exist, they may be on our side against Innominat. One can hope! Artorius wouldn't stand a chance.

Deeper in, I find I need to dry a chalice of water to open the path, Zelda-style. Or really just "Push the A button" style, which is far lamer. Would it kill them to make an actual PUZZLE? I bump into the daemon, which seems to be Mahina. Eleanor has an odd reaction to this, and after we beat the crap out of her (weak-ass sub-boss), Eleanor wants to execute her... until Laphicet stops it. None of this makes any sense. Laphicet says Daemon Mahina is still looking for her daughter and is overprotective even still. Eleanor shows her barbarianism by saying that daemons "lose all empathy and love" and continues to say things that directly contradict the reality in front of her. Velvet and Rokurou still have feelings. Eleanor is cold and very xenophobic.

Rokurou thinks that eight-headed dragon Innominat isn't an Empyrean, since it's not a malak. We think of ideas to fight such a thing, and Laphicet thinks to get the heads all tangled together. If only. We find a door with gems matching the chalices. I have to turn them all on to open the door? Okay. That warp pad will come in handy. (I also wasted a chain encounter where I ended up facing a Dire Foe afterward... UGH, bad luck! All that for no payoff.) It takes me a bit to find the gemstone for the final chalice - that's more "fetch quest" than "puzzle" - but I solve it without really thinking much. Just looking. I then release a sealed energy. I don't wanna wait, so... in I go tonight!

There's a creature. A therion that's not a beetle (per prior theory), with a girl trapped in its mouth. It's not as scary as it thinks it is. Velvet just stands there as the thing ricochets off the barrier. Laphicet's tears indicate that, just as with Warg Forest, it's an Earthpulse. I take the therion down, and it's a little tough actually! Mahina comes to rescue her daughter trapped inside... did nobody notice? Eleanor, ever the piece of shit, charges at Mahina and kills her. Like a badass, Mahina uses her last breath to let the therion consume her to free her daughter. Kamoana is still a therion and can't be cured, sadly. Eleanor starts crying, realizing she is a cold-blooded monster who took this poor girl's mother from her, no different than the daemons she hates so. She is abhorrent and inhumane. The Abbey made Kamoana into that therion, what with their self-sacrifice. Another villain shows up - Oscar - and Eleanor demands to know what's going on. Oscar says Eleanor doesn't need to know and that nothing should trouble her since it was a "necessary sacrifice." Oscar starts some diatribe and Velvet dispatches him with a quick blow. I don't think he's dead enough for my liking. Eleanor accuses Velvet of having no compassion, which makes me LOL since Eleanor has less than zero herself. Velvet's intention was to make an example out of Eleanor while destroying the barrier. Karen deserved it.

Kamoana is hysterical but Eleanor tries to say "your mommy's watching over you." Velvet leaves Oscar there, not wanting our Karen friend to be any more hysterical. I think Oscar's who she's linked to. OOH, what if they dated or something? Even so, he treats her as inferior. All of a sudden she has feelings, but they're entirely selfish. What a fucking baby. She's a hypocritical, xenophobic "Mean Girl" Karen, and is the epitome of everything I hate. I move through the dungeon and this "malevolence" is getting stronger. Whatever that was supposed to be. Something to do with daemonblight, right? And therions? The Abbey's doing, of course, for controlling people. This is also apparent in the sky outside the temple.

I end for the night right outside of Haria, where I expect to enter tomorrow to see it on fire or something.

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NBIceman
01/10/22 10:14:23 AM
#68:


Want to let you know I'm still reading this - just been sick and busy the last few days and haven't felt much like typing up thoughts. Glad you're still enjoying the game!

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BlueCrystalTear
01/10/22 11:38:43 PM
#69:


NBIceman posted...
Want to let you know I'm still reading this - just been sick and busy the last few days and haven't felt much like typing up thoughts. Glad you're still enjoying the game!

Thanks, I was gonna ask if anyone was still reading this. I want to know people care, else why would I?

I am definitely still enjoying it. I like that Eleanor is a hypocritical asshole, which is refreshing for a waifu archetype. She seems irredeemable at this point, which is the perfect catalyst for her starting to accept her immorality and that the root cause is the Abbey. I played a LOT today jsyk... had to condense this but it's still two posts.

The reason I think Haria will be destroyed is how the story was presented. The way they have "old fashioned" beliefs will make them a target, and there was a certain ominous feel from the start that only exponentially increased when this malevolence thing happened. I'm still not quite sure what that is. The synopsis says: "The therions devour malevolence, which is then absorbed by Innominat to fuel his resurrection." So the reason the malevolence is breaking out is because we defeated the therion and all that's left is Kamoana, so she can't absorb the rest and return to therion form. The Abbey made Kamoana into that therion to sacrifice her for their nefarious purposes. Villains like Artorius, Teresa, Oscar, and Eleanor better be remembered as vile human beings by the time Zestiria comes around. Eleanor's acceptance of her hypocrisy is going to hinge on her recognizing it first. She's the most salvageable of the villains, but she kind of has to be. She's a party member.

I enter Haria and, unsurprisingly, the town is nothing like before. While it's not ablaze, the people are in a trance. The malevolence is too dense for Grim to keep reading... and the people start turning into daemons, unable to resist. The Abbey has once again brought about daemons, including the innkeeper's daughter. The energy spilling from their bodies causes daemonblight. We'll need to talk about what exactly daemonblight is, but we gotta run now. We leave town with the place intact but.... yeah. We ain't coming back.

I take out a Dire Foe after a chain battle and somehow get 195 grade AND master 17 pieces of equipment at once. Like WHAT HOLY SHIT MUCH WOW. Also wow: I reach the final area of the ship exploration! Am I ahead of schedule? I haven't been booting up the game just to play with that or anything. I've just been doing it when it gets back. Same as Xillia 2 with this mechanic (which was with Rollo). I also notice Eleanor isn't saying anything in the menus, a nice little detail.

Entering Yseult, I purge some weapons. This a good while. I had like 250 in there. That's like... 42 things per character or 10-ish per slot, yeesh! I look around... the people are clueless about what's going on, and we're not warning them because that's the Abbey's job. I also see the innkeeper's daughter here 4x... so they couldn't even use a unique model for her. Kamoana is missing her mom, and Eleanor and Laphicet manipulate her saying that her mom would be sad if she got eaten by a daemon. Eleanor still doesn't have the guts to admit that she's a heartless murderer, especially to the child of her innocent victim. There's more info about global cooling here - gotta wonder if this place is iced over in Zestiria or something. Would be... interesting.

At the harbor, Velvet grills Eizen about malevolence and Grim says it's "malak taboo" - and that they don't tell humans for their own protection. Eleanor wants to know the truth so she can stop lying to herself. The bombshell is that daemonblight isn't real - all humans are daemons, and if the malevolence in one's heart overflows, they transform. Not surprising, as I'd wondered what the heck caused it. Magilou knew this, and says it's the darkness, the sin inside one's soul. This sounds like reality: People are naturally evil and must learn to suppress that evil. If they don't, they become bullies who are as xenophobic and unaccepting as Eleanor. People like Eleanor generate malevolence. And this exposes people's true, rotten cores. The Abbey perpetuates the lie to control people, to get them to hold what little dignity they have. As expected, Eleanor thinks this is a lie. She may rival Anise for most awful person in a Tales party. The ability to see daemon forms (instead of hysterical people) and malakhim was caused by The Opening, which triggered greater resonance in all of humanity. Sounds about right.

Like I said before, therions eat the malevolence so the villagers can contain it; when Kamoana was removed, they all showed their true forms. Velvet doesn't seem to care about more daemons... if they're all trending that way regardless, what's the big deal? The plan is to defeat Innominat to end this whole "malevolence" thing... but more importantly, kill the wretched Artorius. Velvet doesn't care what she has to sacrifice. The bastard must die.

Eleanor starts crying, recognizing that she too is a daemon - the very thing she hates so. Unbelievably, Kamoana, a THERION, tells Eleanor her mommy's watching over her, too. This gets to her. It's awesome. Grim says malakhim don't produce malevolence, but external malevolence is a toxin that can make them daemons. This is why murdering a vessel makes malaks daemons, since the intent to kill is malevolence. And the prison had enough to begin with. Malevolence is produced by human emotions; in other words, the Seven Deadly Sins. This must be what the eight heads represent. The seven sins are each connected to Innominat itself. However, I don't see any plot justification for this. It would be a natural connection since that's what corrupts humanity as it is.

Next target: A return to the villa in Loegres. Interesting, since Henchwoman Eleanor was ordered to bring Laphicet there. Is she still working for her fellow assholes? After wiping the floor with a Class 4 island, I get a scene on the ship where Eleanor kills the mood with her introspection and subsequent sharing of her hand mirror with Kamoana. Poor thing can't bear to look at her new form. She wants her Mommy. This reminds Eleanor of herself when she lost her own mother. She is the same thing to Kamoana now. However, Eleanor handles this with maturity... and by partially disrobing to show a huge gash on her chest. Geez, you had to show Laphicet your bazongas!? Eleanor encourages her and says nobody will be scared. This, coming from a xenophobe...!? When Velvet interrupts, Laphicet and Eleanor deny anything happened. Velvet doubts it, but would never guess that Laphicet saw bazongas for the first time.

Grim says she thinks therions are forever reborn so long as one that can serve as a conduit for Innominat's power exists. But if we remove them from earthpulse spots and protect them from the Abbey, the Abbey can't get their way, and new ones won't be reborn. Since we have three therions and only one can defend themselves (Velvet), we need a hideout. The prison might be a good place - would the Abbey ever expect there? Tabatha may have a good idea.

(con't)

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BlueCrystalTear
01/10/22 11:38:57 PM
#70:


Velvet reiterates that negative press covfefe will only cause confusion and panic, which serves as a distraction. Nobody knows what we look like aside from the Abbey higher-ups. But people in Zeksom know that we're responsible for Hellawes, Vortigern, killing Gideon, Lothringen (though the Abbey's lying that the wyverns were ours, to cover their asses), and probably other things too. I also learn that the Van Eltia was "cursed" but it was because she was Eizen's previous vessel... and nobody knew it until the Advent enabled them to see him. (Also, would it kill the shops to scale with my level? I have no use for this old equipment in Zeksom...)

Eleanor gets put in her place when she scolds the gang for assassinating Gideon for information. You can cut it with the self-righteousness, honey. We killed the head of the snake, an operation smuggling and distributing an opiate. We helped people. I thought your philosophy was "sacrifice one for the good of many" was it not? That's what we did. Only instead of killing innocents, we killed the guiltiest person there was. Does that not make us better than you? I'm also laughing at all the "Coo" jokes. Poor Velvet will never live that down.

In Loegres, a soldier tells me to enhance my equipment... uh, I take that seriously, thank you. The Abbey is lying to people about daemon attacks to make themselves look good... Magilou getting angry about this dancer Majelu having a similar name (and Majelu's teacher dismissing Magilou as irrelevant and nothing to concern herself with) is pretty awesome. In fact, I was already thinking Velvet would be a perfect straight man for a comedy troupe when the skit part started. Magilou may actually be Magillanica, a magician who most likely had greater resonance and used malaks to perform tricks to make her look telekinetic. Not sure how many y/o Magilou is. She's a big question mark, that's for sure. (I also see people trashing Eleanor in their ignorance. The Abbey's doing, of course.) Velvet also tells off some Karen for saying she's part of the "many" who outweigh the individual. LOL.

Like my first thought was, Tabatha suggests the Titania Prison for a hideout, since the Abbey hasn't had contact with it lately. She also says that the fiend in the villa has been relocated, and her people are checking into it. Velvet says she'll complete the escort mission in exchange for that information. Nice. Since the tavern is taking too long, Eleanor is conflicted. Was Laphicet really the best person to have watch her? Because if she betrays us now, we're screwed. We catch her before she can go off, and Magilou mentions "the bad guys" TO ONE OF THEM xD. Velvet didn't ask ??? who he is, but I have a sinking feeling I know this person, possibly from many hours of game time ago. Eleanor acts more like in-law; Velvet more like outlaw. "HOW DO YOU NOT ASK WHO YOU'RE ESCORTING?" and Velvet says that's inviting too much trouble. The smell of this man - and his hunting hawk - is somehow familiar.

Magilou demolishes a Dire Foe in another monster encounter (113 Grade + nine items mastered) with GOOD GRIP, another pretty sweet Level 2 Mystic. Nice! I return to Zeksom to see Round 2 of Benwick vs. the Contact, who's gouging prices continuously. Soon as I think we're probably not going to be docking here for a while, a wave sweeps across the area and hypnotizes everyone. Velvet shakes Benwick but the other guy somehow had his heart changed. I gotta wonder if our "guest" is responsible. Velvet suspects Artorius up at the Throne. The escort mentions "The Suppression." That must be event #3 after The Opening and The Advent. We need to get out of here before Artorius tries any more crazy rites. So we do.

Turns out our guest is Prince Percival il Mid Asgard, the heir to the throne. I'm willing to bet he's trying to escape the Abbey's assassins. That's why he can't go back. He's a pretty laid back, do-what-you-want-with-me kind of guy. He also calls out Eleanor on consorting with the underworld. Seeing a Karen get called out never gets old!

I end at the prison island. Who all are we going to keep here, I wonder? (I also am wondering if we'll return to Velvet's hometown later on...)

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BlueCrystalTear
01/11/22 2:56:15 PM
#71:


Ah yes, I was taking some screenshots to share but forgot to upload them. Not that they're a big deal here tbqh >_>

Entering Velvet's old digs, I find a wounded thug collapsing. Eleanor asks her if she's alright as she dies. A "headless knight" has returned. She's apparently not referring to Kurogane. Also there's a giant ape man on the loose! Thankfully it's just one of the weak enemies from over by Loegres, but... it means that the Abbey never quelled the riot. Venomization may have occurred to produce strong daemons that were too powerful to control. Perhaps they were trying to breed weapons. Velvet may have been one of those. And it's quality of souls over quantity, and Eleanor is in denial about that.II Eleanor continues to be overprotective of Kamoana, already showing that she recognizes her hypocrisy and desire to be better.

For some reason, the Turtlez is here. Eleanor switches from taking his side to calling him a criminal. Nice to have a shop. Magilou explains to Eleanor that Velvet incited a riot to escape.. Rokurou and Magilou came along, since they were the smart ones. I also learn here that herbs never regrow; if the ones that I picked here at the start of the game haven't regrown, they never will. Sadly there's no mention of the spot where Velvet and Rokurou first met and she informed him that she'd seen his sword in the stash downstairs. Or Magilou's incredible introduction. I soon realize there's nothing to be seen anywhere, really, so I press on. Mr. Headless Knight isn't any stronger than the regular enemies around here and he goes down. We find out that there's an earthpulse point at the bottom of the prison... and when Eleanor asks if it housed a therion, all eyes are on the obvious. Velvet spins the story nicely and anonymously, with an epic punchline that still surprises nobody. Rokurou realizes that, without the therion to consume malevolence, the prison went out of control and the Abbey abandoned all ye hope within.

Karen continues to defend Artorius, even with Velvet omitting the most horrible detail of Artorius causing the Opening by sacrificing his own wife and unborn child just so he could later heroize himself. Seriously, fuck you, Karen. Velvet gets in her face and spits in it. It's so nice to see a horrible person be a punching bag, since sometimes they get away with it. This one isn't. Velvet doesn't mind being asked about her connection to Artorius, that he was like a brother to her after marrying - and later murdering - her sister. Why hasn't Velvet connected those obvious dots yet? I'm thinking the game will be like "HUGE PLOT TWIST HE KILLED CELICA TOO!" but, uh, based on the cross in the sky (Christian symbolism, anyone?) recurring and her having died that very night.... one can conclude something quite obvious. This should have been revealed already, much like the daemonblight explanation should have been earlier too. (I'm at 66 hours already because I'm typing these notes as I go as well as IMing people, so that timestamp is irrelevant.)

Eizen confirms how wrong my theory about Niko being Eleanor was; it was pretty outlandish of a stretch but I've seen crazier twists. I like playing around with dumb ideas and seeing if I get those right. Transformation into a daemon is incurable and cannot be reverted except by death.

Karen insists we go back to help Kamoana, and the TRUE headless knight is causing havoc there. We beat him - it's an actual boss fight - and Percy's hawk turns into the therion from the villa! It's his pet, Griffin, who is more than happy to help finish consuming the venomized decor. It seems as if Griffin accepts this alliance since it's with the other therions. Percy says he's not a person, but an institution, and he just wants to be free with his bird buddy. Logical. He cites being whipped for simply scratching his back, because a prince cannot be human and must present himself in blah blah blah. Like WTF. Is he not supposed to excuse himself to take a shit, either? He's a human being and has to do what he has to do. LET HIM BE HUMAN. Just like Percy wants Griffin to just be a bird... even if it means malevolence overtakes the capital. I must wonder how Tabatha and company will respond. They may relocate without the therion there. We now have four, at least... and a potential hostage, which the prince is okay with.

I finally get to fucking save after an hour and a half. FINALLY.

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Murphiroth
01/12/22 11:31:19 AM
#72:


Toitlez are the best. The inexplicable accent kills me.

I'm still reading these btw! Good writeups too, I just don't specifically have anything important to contribute.
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Mewtwo59
01/12/22 12:57:58 PM
#73:


Herbs do regrow. The way they work is that they're linked to you picking another herb, so they'll regrow as soon as you pick that specific herb. They probably don't mention this mechanic so you don't abuse it.

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BlueCrystalTear
01/13/22 12:15:10 AM
#74:


\Murphiroth posted...
Toitlez are the best. The inexplicable accent kills me.

I'm still reading these btw! Good writeups too, I just don't specifically have anything important to contribute.

I was tempted to type "Toitolez" and now I will. That accent is indeed hilarious. Poor guy has to deal with sadists like Velvet and Magilou as customers.

And thanks. I'm doing the best I can! :)

Mewtwo59 posted...
Herbs do regrow. The way they work is that they're linked to you picking another herb, so they'll regrow as soon as you pick that specific herb. They probably don't mention this mechanic so you don't abuse it.

Thanks for that intel - it's good to know. That's likely the least abusable way to handle it, since finding 8-9 herbs to cycle through is too time-consuming for the payoff. If they grew back after 20 hours of gameplay, someone could leave their console on overnight to farm. There are probably guides for best routes but I won't need them. I'm doing just fine. At any rate, play time!

Talking to the gang around the prison...
1. Rokurou and Kurogane are both plastered up the walls. Truth serum at its finest. Velvet can't drink since she's only 19 y/o.
2. Dyle goes full Troyzan and says "THIS IS MY FUCKING ISLAND!" Okay, maybe I exaggerated just the same. He didn't actually say that (nor did Troyzan). The pirates are loving this place - their own pirate fortress!
3. Laphicet and Grim are trying to interpret things again... and it's wild. "Midriff" (Eleanor's?) can be read the same as "poranges are nommy." XD
4. Eizen wants to stir the pot to see if any info about Aifread shakes loose in the Abbey's chaos.
5. Magilou says being unoccupied is being busy. And she's with us because it's entertaining. This existential quandary resonates with me. What's the point of living if all you do is work? Being unoccupied is less of a hassle. Magilou also wants to see how the bet turns out. Not much money on the line though...

I expect having to find Eleanor in this maze and fight monsters, but the game tells me where she is on the map and the monsters are all dead, not even a straggler. Boring! The music is mellow and pleasant, and kind of reminds me of the song "Beauty and the Beast" for some reason. The credits version. Was someone on a Disney Renaissance kick? I'm looking at you, Sakuraba.

Atop the watchtower, I'm curious if Karen's gonna jump with all the self-doubt and denial she's going through. Instead she admits she was a xenophobe, and that daemons and malakhim are just as human as she is. She was a blind, ignorant twit, and a coward. She can't live like that anymore, and she's not suicidal, even with the game's stupidly dramatic step back. The next morning, she opens up about Artorius tasking her to take Laphicet to the villa. And now she's rejecting the Abbey's orders. While she believes Artorius's vision will benefit everyone, she can't support his methods. She's going on a journey within herself, to find answers. A journey to reject her past Karen self and maybe be a better spy. Guess I can stop calling her Karen. (Surprised she doesn't get a new outfit to symbolize this change of heart. Would be nice if I had something viable that wasn't the disappointing swimwear.)

Skits galore! Guessing this is the end of Act 2 and I'm unlocking all these. It was excessive...
1. Eleanor apologizes for plotting behind Laphicet's back, and he says he knew on a hunch, plus Velvet was watching her like Griffin. Eleanor can't process that Velvet figured she was up to something like that. Eleanor says Laphicet is a better person than her. It's nice to see. She's cognizant of the horrible person she was and is exhibiting growth.
2. Velvet is a good cook even though she can't taste food. She's doing what Celica taught her. (I've been sharing the love with cooking, depending on what status condition I need to protect from.) Velvet stirs memories of Celica, so... are we about to find out the obvious truth that I knew from the moment Laphi was sacrificed? That cross in the red sky was WAY too distinctive to forget.
3. Re: Ship exploration... Something Terror Island. Is that the final destination when I hit the max level? Magilou got SHOT DOWN.
4. Rokurou grills Bienfu about Magilou, who really truly is a dark witch. Bienfu tells a story... just like Magilou would, embellishing details for imagery, with a punchline of strawberry jam mixed with soy sauce and liquor. Then he realizes she doesn't cook him anything that he loves because she's abusive. Poor guy.
5. Laphicet got some Royal Perfume. People had used perfume to mask their reekiness because plumbing was inadequate and baths thus spread disease.
6. Velvet and Rokurou are both fine with the idea of converting this prison. It's for business though: Renovate it into a fort with escape tunnels for the sake of escape tunnels. A guy can dream, right? Eizen is fun. Velvet not so much.
7. At the makeshift inn, Laphicet looks at a cartography/oceanography book. Eizen gives a guy talk about adventure and things he finds cool. Sounds like me. I can talk about Tales for a few hours without tiring. I rest again and get a SECOND skit about his reading... and Dyle appears in a skit image! This is about dinosaurs... our dinosaurs. Laphicet goes all kid-in-a-candy-store. So does Rokurou. Guys will be guys.

We FINALLY get to Velvet's old, er, apartment and Laphicet says he thinks he can use this point as a conduit to find the others. One ritual later, he's found a few big ones - he can detect size - and a new one is to the west. Kurogane laments a need for better materials, like orichalcum... some is in a sunken ship somewhere, maybe, but there's no way to know where it is. Oh, we'll find it, alright. A pirate mentions how hard it would be to escape Titania, which explains why the ship crashed at the start of the game, and Rokurou is amazed we're still kickin'. Best part is Dyle complaining to Kurogane, who ALSO has a skit sprite, about being errand boy. Their insults are great.

First earthpulse I target is in the deep sea. Probably the shipwreck with orichalcum on board. Hello, obvious. Eizen somehow has Fujibayashi's Rod. Hmm... Sheena or Suzu? Never played Phantasia. Triet loaches... Colette collates collections... yup, it's Sheena's rod. Eleanor knows how to work a fishing rod, which surprises me. Eizen is a master, which doesn't. Magilou used Bienfu as bait for a whale once... yeesh, but not surprising. While fishing for fish therions, Laphicet gets, uh, horny. This is bizarre and Velvet shuts it down fast. We get a bunch of useless attachments; I find many of them as tacky as Velvet does. All I have equipped are Velvet's hat and Eleanor's earrings that somehow use up all the space. Laphicet calls Velvet out for thinking he's her brother so much, but this is interrupted by Velvet fishing up a cracked pot that... contains four octopi. How? They're weak as fuck. We get back to the spat but then zombies come out. This thing is a.... portal for weak enemies? Someone named Grune (Legendia Grune? Never played that either.) made this pot eons ago. But it's actually a daemon. Eizen says not to smash it, Rokurou asks if he can slash it... and follows with Form Zero. Sweet timing. This unlocks additional enhancement levels for weapons, yay!

Reaper's Curse talk... Laphicet is dejected, but Velvet encourages him and calls him Phi. She's trying to distinguish him from her brother. She wants to accept him for him. Phi suits him... except when you think of that annoying thing from Skyward Snore. As expected, orichalcum ore turns up. Could the game have been any more obvious? Phi feels more welcomed now. And I feel like stopping for the night.

Before I can, we get back to the ranch... and nothing happens.

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BlueCrystalTear
01/14/22 11:30:40 PM
#75:


Quick notes from Titania:
1. It's nice how they have back-up quotes for the ship exploration when Eizen's not in the party.... [addendum later: Actually they're new ones for Part 3 to go alongside Eizen's, now that Eleanor and Phi are mor open.]
2. Eleanor is clearly on our side now, since she's trying to conjecture what each location to house a therion had in common, aside from obvious things like the barrier. Perhaps Velvet should use her brain for that as well. I can't think of anything, since the Warg Forest was naturally occurring and above ground. Palamedes was coastal so it can't be at the centers of landmasses.
3. "I Spy" nonsense... Kurogane getting the orichalcum, which will hopefully be enough... Magilou responding to Velvet's threats with extortion... Eizen sending letters to Zestiria Girl and pinching Rokurou and Phi for reading... Toitolez disappearing... eavesdropping on eavesdroppers... Grim grilling Eizen about being a pirate despite sinking in water... Eizen being extraordinarily particular... Mags going from explaining how Phi having a name gives him humanity to demanding a nickname, only to reject all of Velvet's ideas (HILARIOUSLY)... Japanese-style octopus ink pasta... the pet is apparently a drone beetle, but the guys are all stubborn about it... the Reaper's Curse obliterating three trick coins Kurogane made... Grawky (Griffin) dropping huge things onto the ship... just stuff happening. Not much to write about it all.
4. Another easy Class 4.

We get to Zeksom and a Bloodwing tells us to go to Stonebury, since a strong daemon was spotted at the Aldina Plains near there. Eizen has trust issues with the Bloodwings since they seem to know everything about us, including our movements, yet we hardly know much about them. I also get the "Magi & Vel Comedy Routine" which is... improv for someone with absolutely zero experience with comedy. This is what Magilou gets for trying to coerce Velvet into this. I hope this sidequest continues, because this would be a very disappointing end to it otherwise. At least we got Bienfu's first crush story, and Magilou breaks the bad news to him that she never really loved him... and Bienfu calls out her for being a sadist before Eizen shuts them down.

I get to weapon-stripping and FATAL PROCESSING ERROR

REBOOTING...

FUCK FUCK FUCKITY FUCK FUCK

Sorry about that. Fucking BSOD. Uhh, where was I?

Right. I had saved right before getting rid of some weapons and +6ing. Something about an architect's apprentice building his own town that is probably completely irrelevant to anything I'll find in Berseria, since it's another Zestiria cross-reference. Gotta wonder what all was planned before Berseria and what wasn't, or if they just went and did all this lore stuff in response because they felt like Zestiria's world was quality even if the game was received poorly. Well, Japan may have liked it, but they have odd taste sometimes. I still don't get why they rank Emil, an utterly terrible excuse of a character, up there with greats like Luke and Yuri.

After a pit stop in the capital to do more weapon stuffs with the junk I pinked up along the way (juggling four birdy things at once is fun!) - I also noted a commoner telling the story of Eleanor murdering Mahina in cold blood like the daemon she is - I make my way toward Stonebury. I also do the serving mini-game with Eleanor, so she's no longer in her villain uniform. I get an "Exorcist Uniform" outfit for her as well but there's no helmet, oddly. WHY NOT? It would be great for a second playthrough if I wanted to not have to look at her face when she's still a Karen. I also fail this mini-game as Eizen. I also find that Magilou can talk to dogs in a well-hidden sidequest. Magilou just quotes dog-related adages, so part of me thinks it's just dog hooey because, c'mon, it's Magilou. It almost seems like she's been planning this for years. Like... can humans not coexist with both dogs and cats? Still, she amuses me. It also amuses me how I can just walk around this place and not have to kill 500 thugs every single time. Like... are we not the most wanted people by the Abbey yet?

Eleanor looks ridiculous holding her spear in the waitress outfit. She also says she's gotten used to Phi's powers. Velvet... doesn't like it still. And Magilou says something about "Fuschie Cass" aka "Thing" being Bienfu's "true name." So THAT's the Fuschie Cass reference that confused me at some point! And Phi is... very worked up about this. Apparently a malak divulging that's basically trusting someone with their lives. I don't get it since it's not like PII or anything that could compromise them, unless there's something I missed. This is a name given to a malak by their vessel in a pact. If anything, one would think that their malak birth name would be the PII here. Also, there's a dragon above.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=spm5-SXo4Do

Phi directs us to the top of a nearby mountain. I also note that, as I go along the way, Velvet no longer uses Annihilating Crash. I have no idea how to explain this. I am not doing anything differently.I test some things out on Galles Lake Road East while opening chests there and I'm somehow able to get it off there. Maybe it's related to enemy level and them guarding? IDK. It's very uneven. At any rate, I climb the mountain - seems like this was formed by earthpulses criss-crossing, which makes it perfect for a therion to perch atop. Velvet also explains Alabastergrass to Eizen. This group as a bunch knows something about everything. That makes them LETHAL.Magilou isn't convinced of this, because we're trying to fight a big freakin' dragon, who's no small fry like the wyverns.

At any rate, I clean up this route as best - no problems with the peacock cock cock cock oh wait cocks don't have cocks - I can before saving outside Stonebury for the night.

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Mewtwo59
01/14/22 11:41:55 PM
#76:


The whole true name thing is kinda poorly explained anyway. Eizen has one (and it's one that his sister is familiar with if the letter is anything to go by), even though he's never made a pact with a human. I suppose he could've given it to himself, but the game never goes into detail about that.

And yeah, the game is a little prone to crashing on PC. It happened to me a couple of times, but I luckily never lost anything important.

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BlueCrystalTear
01/15/22 2:41:16 PM
#77:


Good to know that it's not just me. I wasn't expecting a BSOD in the middle of gameplay, but thankfully I only lost five minutes since my prior save. Not a big deal. If I'd lost an hour... yeah that would be aggravating.

As for the true name thing, yeah, that weird name at the end must have been Eizen's, and that's probably why he was so protective of that letter. I take it Zestiria girl being his sister is something I would know about if I played ToZ, but I can see the familial resemblance anyway, so no worries about that. I'm not quite sure how malaks breed or anything like that, and it would be fascinating to learn it. The more of those details you examine in the game proper, the better experience the player will have. You don't want to dismiss things as irrelevant or you end up with something like Vesperia, where the world-building is too simplified.

Playing just a bit...
1. Phi's "It worked! HUGE SUCCESS!" makes me think "This was a triumph."
2. Kids in the village talking about creating jeweled purple eggs... I highly doubt egg yolks change color depending on what a hen eats. An egg is simply a chicken's period, after all.
3. Blah blah blah equipment management Part 1
4. The architect's apprentice makes it pretty blatant that this place is VERY different in Zestiria - it's not a mere pioneering town, it's a bustling metropolis there. Possibly with a bell tower that's... a rock? Okay.
5. The town was called "Stoneberry" because of the abundance of stone and berries, but the spelling changed to look more like that of a town (Stonebury sounds like a place in Connecticut tbqh). The radishbell potato is highly toxic right now, but they're breeding them. In a thousand years or so, they'll only have enough poison to keep bugs away and keep the potatoes ripe for breeding. She also mentions something from the Survivor 42 trailer: "Potatoes have skin. I have skin. Am I a potato?" (Okay, she came CLOSE to making that adage.)
6. Blah blah blah equipment management part 2

I have a headache. I think I need to go lay down for a bit... may or may not play later. We'll see.

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NBIceman
01/17/22 11:19:03 AM
#78:


Okay, my life has finally calmed down so here's a bunch of pithy quick-hitter thoughts on stuff that's happened since last I commented.

Laphicet thinks the bug is a new species, which leads to an incredibly dumb argument between Rokurou and Eizen about whether it's a stag beetle or rhino beetle
One of the best skits in the game tbh. "Beetledom? More like beetle-dumb."

Zesty. I would give that game a chance, but... I hear Sorey is insufferable, Rose is a "Mean Girl," the rest of the cast is shoveled aside, the gameplay prohibits a good story, and playing through it makes one want to gouge their eyeballs. I heard Hideo Baba was fired for ruining the game to make Rose the heroine because he was f***ing her seiyuu. Is that true? Or just a rumor?
Rose's problem is less that she's a mean girl and more that she's a Mary Sue... And I never use that term. She's actually one of the more actively likable characters in the game personality-wise; unfortunately her very existence ruins the narrative.

The Baba thing is technically only a rumor, but there's no small amount of smoke there.

I am already VERY afraid of crossing Grim. She's one tough customer and nothing gets by her. I like her.
Grim is one of my favorite NPCs in the series. Glad you're having fun with her already.

Entering Yseult, I purge some weapons. This a good while. I had like 250 in there. That's like... 42 things per character or 10-ish per slot, yeesh!
Berseria's equipment system is a mess. Zestiria's is worse still. I know Tales likes to innovate on its gameplay with every entry, but I think Vesperia's equipment/skill system is where they topped out and I kinda wish they'd just stuck to that one and made small tweaks to it.

Magilou says being unoccupied is being busy. And she's with us because it's entertaining. This existential quandary resonates with me.
Magilou is basically a bunch of existential quandaries coalesced into physical character form... A character that also happens to be the party troll. It should be a really obnoxious and heavy-handed combination, but her dialogue is so legitimately well written that she's awesome instead. And the best is yet to come!

Someone named Grune (Legendia Grune? Never played that either.)
You're not missing much IMO, but some people really love its cast for reasons I don't quite get.

Mags going from explaining how Phi having a name gives him humanity to demanding a nickname, only to reject all of Velvet's ideas (HILARIOUSLY)
Velvet being really terrible at naming or nicknaming anything is a nice endearing, understated character quirk I've always enjoyed from her.

I've got more high-level thoughts on recent plot developments etc. as well, but since I'd have to delve into spoiler territory for that I guess I'll hold off. No reason to make this post look like a CIA document on the off chance anyone else reading through the topic had some bizarre interest in seeing me wax about Berseria's themes.

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BlueCrystalTear
01/17/22 8:36:54 PM
#79:


NBIceman posted...
One of the best skits in the game tbh. "Beetledom? More like beetle-dumb."

Yeah, the insults were great. We need more insult-fests like that.

Rose's problem is less that she's a mean girl and more that she's a Mary Sue... And I never use that term. She's actually one of the more actively likable characters in the game personality-wise; unfortunately her very existence ruins the narrative.

The Baba thing is technically only a rumor, but there's no small amount of smoke there.

Well Emil is a Mary Sue too. I described him in another topic as "fifty shades of self-insert fanfiction where a weakling Mary Sue can transform himself into an infallible badass, meets all his heroes, and gets a waifu voiced by Laura Bailey who gets wet at the sight of him." You may remember where. Is Rose as bad as that? And tbh it wouldn't surprise me if Bamco fired Baba because of substantiation to that rumor.

Sounds like Zestiria is skippable if I want to bail. The poll is still only 2-1 in favor of me giving it a chance. I may do that but if I bail after 6 hours, don't blame me lol.

Grim is one of my favorite NPCs in the series. Glad you're having fun with her already.

She's deadpan in the funniest way, and, like Velvet, would make a good "straight man" in a comedy routine. Elizabeth Maxwell (again, who I met at a con) does a fantastic job selling it and makes her gold with the rest of the party. I hope for more antics that make her personality shine even further.

Berseria's equipment system is a mess. Zestiria's is worse still. I know Tales likes to innovate on its gameplay with every entry, but I think Vesperia's equipment/skill system is where they topped out and I kinda wish they'd just stuck to that one and made small tweaks to it.

Yeah, they like to change things with every entry so things don't get stale. I couldn't tell you how many agonizing hours I've spent managing equipment. Being OCD, I have to ensure the things I junk are useless to me. Like sometimes I'll equip weaker things for a +6 to get the extra soul at +20 overall. I get what they were going for but the inventory and components are just a disaster zone. Vesperia's equipment skill-learning system is indeed way better. This may be in the same vein, but you have way too much inventory to manage and the only real way to come by parts is by junking old weapons... plus each weapon only has one skill instead of potentially 3. I like that, once you've learned it, they double up. So if you learn a Slow Ward's 40% resistance and leave it equipped, your resistance is 80%. Useful.

Magilou is basically a bunch of existential quandaries coalesced into physical character form... A character that also happens to be the party troll. It should be a really obnoxious and heavy-handed combination, but her dialogue is so legitimately well written that she's awesome instead. And the best is yet to come!

She's incredible, since most characters like her are obnoxious. Erica Lindbeck is a huge part of why I love her, because she does a fantastic job becoming Magilou. She's great at trolling. Rokurou is also a troll, only he's way more subtle with it than Magilou; and it's great that there are TWO trolls here. Magilou is consistent entertainment. She's very similar to Pascal in Graces, only she has more story to her and her targets are less of trolls themselves (Rokurou is similar to Malik tbh). She's also the only one who makes the winquotes here interesting.

Velvet being really terrible at naming or nicknaming anything is a nice endearing, understated character quirk I've always enjoyed from her.

This helps humanize her more. Having little quirks like that makes the player appreciate her more. A good JRPG party needs those things. Like... Tear's modesty and overreaction to any comments about her body.

I've got more high-level thoughts on recent plot developments etc. as well, but since I'd have to delve into spoiler territory for that I guess I'll hold off. No reason to make this post look like a CIA document on the off chance anyone else reading through the topic had some bizarre interest in seeing me wax about Berseria's themes.

Please keep posting them as I get there! I have been watching quite a bit of football this weekend, so I didn't get to play much. I spent about 40 minutes finishing up my equipment management - even going out of my way a little to take some frustration out on a few monsters - but that's all I had time for.

Today is similarly limited. Pureland Wine being yet another probably Zestiria reference... a villager mentions Zaveid staring the dragon down... and then I run into Zaveid in the inn, drinking a bottle of Thorny Forest. Not sure how he could afford that, based on what the old guy outside mentioned. I at first thought it was Sleeping Princess, which would be even MORE expensive. Eizen just wanted to leave him alone, and to distract him, the Bloodwing informant approaches us. She says it only nests on rainy days and, as if on cue, a rain machine activates. Geez. She also says the dragon may be the source of the storms. The villagers won't like if we kill it, then, because it's what lets their crops prosper.

I exit the village and a Katz that looks like Mieu wants to pawn off a geoboard off on someone who can use it. And we were the ones who came to mind after all the help we've been to them. Sweet! Apparently, Normin have a Normin Name, a true name, and a casual name all at once... how bizarre. They kinda discovered and perfected this technology, but Fuchsie Cass doesn't quite inspire confidence here. He won't even say his Normin Name because it's a title of what they're good at... so is he only good at, say, banging? His name is... Normin Breyve. Uhhhh, that does not compute. He chickened out the moment he heard Magilou call him out. LOL.

I surf around a bit and beat up another bunch of weak enemies as I cross the plain. I save for now at the mountain save point... I'm gonna watch Monday Night Football as long as it entertains me, and then maybe I'll be back here.

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Peace___Frog
01/18/22 12:09:25 AM
#80:


Fuck yeah finally got the board

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BlueCrystalTear
01/18/22 12:42:47 AM
#81:


Well so much for MNF entertaining me.

The dragon's not a therion, so we turn back until Eizen and Eleanor each do something stupid. Eizen wants to take this huge thing on, and then Eleanor yells at him that it's a dumb idea... promptly alerting the dragon to our presence. OOPS! Zaveid interrupts the fight, only to take a fist from Eizen... and he's protecting her with his life. She knocks him away and flies off. Apparently, this is... someone they both know? It was a malak who became a dragon, tainted by malevolence. Phi bemoans potentially becoming a dragon... or Eizen becoming one as well. The Abbey's controlling their malaks by stripping them of consciousness, which is interesting. Velvet doesn't give a shit about any of this and tells Eizen that if he drags us into another dragon fight like this, he's gonna become one himself.

The rest of my playtime is - you guessed it - bouncing back to Stonebury to buy a little more Quartz stuff and then managing my equipment more. Seriously, did they not recognize just how nightmarish this is? You are overloaded with equipment and can't even navigate the menu because of how much crap is in there, and you need to make sure you've learned the skills before getting rid of old stuff. And you may want to keep something weaker because of its random bonus skills and/or because you can make it a +6 to get more souls. It's like they didn't give any thought to any logical outcome. Because...
1. Someone does nothing and just equips any new toys they get. They never learn skills and have so much crap that they can't manage any of it from an early point in the game.
2, They spend hours like me just trying to make sure everything's okay, sometimes even resetting because they ran out of Odorless Fluids (which are so tough to get).

Like which of these did they WANT me to do? Did they WANT me to just let things sit in there when they tell me I should be upgrading? Like what?

...anyway that's all for tonight. More tomorrow.

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BlueCrystalTear
01/19/22 12:41:45 AM
#82:


I take the road back to Loegres and I'm almost out of Odorless Fluid. The game's board says you can reduce the difficulty to make the no-skill weapons more likely to spawn. Many weapons I get on my way back to Zeksom, but only ONE has no innate skillz. Like WHAT. How am I supposed to upgrade stuff? Le ugh.

The Toitolez is waiting at the gate (hence "skillz" above) and he has a letter for Eizen that's the kind of crap you see Twitter thugs spitting out. Eizen crumbles it up and doesn't care, because he's a pirate - so what? People hate him 'cuz they ain't him. There's also talk about noh dollz - Empyrean statuettes that are actually magical and may counteract the Reaper's Curse, but are very hard to find. Whatever, it's just fetch quest stuff. Eizen also confesses the lady he writes to is his sister, so hey, it wasn't a spoiler!

There's a skit where Phi asks why the pirates were fighting over catz vs. dogz and it predictably turns into an argument. Magilou narrates like it's Homeric poetry and obviously likes catz, preferably black. Eizen likes squirrelz, Rokurou finds dogz more annoying but hates that Shigure likes catz, Eleanor is a dog person, and Velvet says dogz since "they don't betray you." She's more like a cat herself. Keeps to herself a lot. Never wants to play for long and only does it to entertain you. Bienfu thinks he's entitled to Bienfu people, but probably just wants some lovin' again.

I beat up a Class 4 to farm weapons but NONE OF THESE are skill-less. Like how can I upgrade weapons without necessary parts? UGH! Even the easiest difficulty makes weapons have skills, however useless the +5 to Focus is at this point. It's obnoxious. I switch the difficulty back and give up. This weapon system is the worst part of the game.

Back at the ranch, Phi is... pushing himself a little too hard in sensing earthpulses. I am afraid this means he'll die, giving his life because he overexerted himself. Stubborn self-sacrifice may not be for the greater good if you're not there to see that the fruits of your labor will succeed. How many times has Y character died at the end to achieve the goal? You can't die SOONER - dying along the way makes you a nameless NPC.

I noticed this at the port, but it's not an anomaly: The chests refilled themselves. Perhaps this is due to me messing with the difficulty. I go around Titania to grab some of this. This place is so needlessly convoluted. At least put in warp pads or make it feel complete, like a Suikoden castle. Those tend to be pretty huge (I've played I, II, and V) but they're packed with people. This is empty. Empty like my life. It's depressing to move around in for so long. It's also lacking Odorless Fluid, but... I do get a Balmy Fluid and Mellow Fluid that I have to throw out. Like seriously, this lazy weapon system gets worse and worse. I playtest and what comes from a chest is pregenerated based on the difficulty. So I can't save scum. UGH.

I get to the pit to find Eizen telling Phi to not overwork himself. He explains - and Velvet doesn't seem to overhear this, which is strange since the game from her perspective - that malakhim bestow divine grace upon humans who pray to them, but this has sadly become abnormal because - you guessed it - the Abbey stripping them of consciousness to use as slaves. Velvet asks where we're going next, and Phi says Hellawes. Aww yeah, I've wanted to go back there and see... what's been done with the place.

I see a scene between Kurogane and a pirate about some spinning death machine that doesn't have an off switch. Uhhh... okay. That's kind of an important thing to forget!! Anyway, the plan is to be cheeky bastards and smuggle in relief supplies for the disaster we caused. So long as Dyle doesn't come with, we can get in, since the reports indicate the Abbey doesn't have many thugs there. Phi realizes that Artorius wants to divert people's prayers toward Innominat to grant it strength, which is why he herds the sheeple to do that... and they listen. As someone who realized her xenophobia and hypocrisy, Eleanor doesn't like this. Too much power in one place. Bienfu also sends Phi a letter to give him the experience, which was very nice of him. Reading it aloud to glorify himself, he remarks about having called Magilou fat, and her punishment of hanging him upside down in the cold so he becomes a normincicle has me laughing. Magilou/Bienfu is one of the best relationships of the game tbqh. We don't see enough of them together.

Dyle's not coming since he stole some beer bound for Hellawes, good - they'll recognize him. Kamoana runs crying to Eleanor about a nightmare where her Mommy said she didn't want such an ugly little girl. Eleanor blows obvious smoke up her ass and it doesn't work. Eleanor is thinking hard, knowing her sin caused this poor girl to be like this. Velvet embraces Kamoana and lets the kid cry it all out until she falls asleep. We get to Hellawes and, at the place we first beat the crap out of Eleanor, she's still moping about Kamoana. We eavesdrop on some Abbey goons - one of which is very "IDGAF" - talking to the shipping guild captain we double-crossed. They're mad there's no exorcist in charge, but the goons go "lol too bad we goez north" and they're off. Must be a therion up there. Who's Medissa, by the way?

Hellawes immediately provides ONE Odorless Fluid. In a chest! Well, 1 > 0, but I need nine more right about now. The townspeople are calling Velvet "Calamity" - the Abbey probably dubbed her that, but she'll take it. She wants to look into Medissa because that could prove fruitful. The port looks like it wasn't destroyed at all. Lazy devs. They could re-do the port area. They did that way back in Symphonia. It looks perfectly fuctional, even though the people are spoiled and greedy. They also hate us a LOT. Even though we didn't do anything - it was Teresa's doing.

Confessional time! Eizen is called upon for having the Reaper's eyes, but, since Eizen IS the Reaper, one death glare scares the priest shitless. Eizen tells this story about a beautiful painting that turned out to be a forgery and... all he wanted to repent for was stealing 100 gald from his sister to buy it. Uh. I make ten times that in a single battle, so... okay. Should've been 2,000 gald - a lot to a kid. Phi gets a turn, but he's so young that he only has little boy stuff. He poured salt on a slug, but it was sugar in the salt shaker and... it was brutal. The ants devoured it! And then he poured sugar water down the ant hill and... yeah. Little boys. The pastor said that when he was 8 y/o he did the same thing. Nice.

After some weapons management (two more Odorless Fluids from the shop!), I call it a night. Next time: Asking around about some things. They miss Villain Teresa but hate us, so... we'll see what they spill.

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BlueCrystalTear | You're living your own life. You're you.
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Mewtwo59
01/19/22 2:23:25 AM
#83:


BlueCrystalTear posted...
Eizen also confesses the lady he writes to is his sister, so hey, it wasn't a spoiler!

Yeah, I kinda forgot that it was a while before Eizen actually revealed that. But you're right that anyone who played Zestiria would already know it. Or at least, they'd know Eizen is that Eizen when the illusion of his sister shows up in Lothringen.

BlueCrystalTear posted...
The port looks like it wasn't destroyed at all. Lazy devs. They could re-do the port area. They did that way back in Symphonia. It looks perfectly fuctional, even though the people are spoiled and greedy. They also hate us a LOT. Even though we didn't do anything - it was Teresa's doing.

Yeah, but Symphonia actually had a budget. You'll find that this game didn't, if you haven't already realized it yet.

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""Love" is making a shot to the knees of a target 120 kilometers away using an Aratech sniper rifle with a tri-light scope." HK-47
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NBIceman
01/19/22 10:27:42 AM
#84:


Well Emil is a Mary Sue too. I described him in another topic as "fifty shades of self-insert fanfiction where a weakling Mary Sue can transform himself into an infallible badass, meets all his heroes, and gets a waifu voiced by Laura Bailey who gets wet at the sight of him." You may remember where. Is Rose as bad as that?
Well, when I did my giant Tales character ranking, I had Emil at #90 and Rose at #94, one spot out of last place. Now, granted, Emil got a little bit of that bump because I at least find him enjoyable to play in combat, but I do think Rose is still a worse character, if only due to circumstance - Rose single-handedly and completely ruins Zestiria's worldbuilding in multiple ways, which was the one part of the game that was actually promising before she showed up. Everything she does works out for her, her actions dont have consequences, and the rest of the party all treats her as infallible. The rules of Zestiria that apply to literally every other character simply don't to her. AND it's all so obviously forced that even if you aren't previously aware that development of the game was entirely overhauled midway through to give her this starring role, you'd probably suspect it.

Emil just has the, uh, good fortune to be in a title that was doomed no matter what kind of character he was, so I don't find his failings quite as egregious in comparison. But we're talking about two bottom-six characters in a series with over one hundred now (without even counting Japan-only games).

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