Battlefield 3: West Orlando, or: The Game gets Serious
See what I mean? I just wasn't in the right mood to play this game for some time.
No matter. On with the update!
Milanor's old friend Kylier destroyed a key structure at the Jaws of the Wolf, which blocked the Imperial Army's pursuit. Thanks to her, Yggdra and the others were able to escape the Black Knight Leon and safely reach Orlando Plains.
Once there, they found the Royal Cavalry under attack by the Imperial Court Sorcerer Eudy, with only Durant's unit remaining...
Battlefield 03: West Orlando
(Durant's unit is north of Yggdra and Milanor's position, surrounded on all sides by Imperial soldiers.)
Norn Borderline: Check Point!
Handu River: Check Point!
- Milanor: Uh-oh... That's your main force? They're not looking so good.
- Yggdra: I don't believe it... It was quite sizable (sic) before...
- Milanor: Well, they won't hold out much longer. What's the plan?
- Flunky: Boss! We're back!
- Milanor: So, how's it look out there? Well, there's a bunch of grass, some trees, and a big lake, but that's not important right now.
- Flunky: The Royal Army is nearly sunk. But the 3rd Cavalry is still putting up a good fight...
Just in case you've never played an SRPG before and don't know what green units mean. Of course, if you've never played an SRPG before, I don't know what you're doing playing Yggdra Union
W. Orlando Plains: Check Point!
- Yggdra: The 3rd Cavalry... That's Durant's unit!
- Flunky: They're doing their best, but they're short on manpower. We might be able to help if we hustle.
- Milanor: Alright... All men, to battle! We've got to get there while there's still an army to meet!
- Young Knight: Tch... We're surrounded...! I don't know why they even bothered not using Durant's name here, given that the player and the characters are already well aware of who he is.
- Magician: We've got you now! You won't last forever, so you might as well give up now. If you surrender, I'll spare your lives.
- Young Knight: Surely you jest! A Royal Knight never surrenders! If you never give up, you can't possibly lose! We will give you one last chance to withdraw.
- Magician: Well, aren't we brave? Good luck, tough guy... you'll need it. Get them! Finish off what's left of the Royal Army!
- Rendezvous with Durant! (Move everyone next to Durant)
- If Yggdra, Milanor, or Durant dies...
- If you use up all your cards...
There's still nothing to do on the preparation screen, but I do have a couple of things to mention:
- Yggdra's class is listed as "Sword Maiden". Naturally, she hits things with her gigantic holy sword the size of a Greyhound bus.
- The map you're given is next to worthless. Here's why:
- It only shows the area that the map comprises at the start of the battle. This almost always changes, frequently several times in the same fight.
- It gives next to no information on your enemies. You can see which forces belong to which commander, and what gender each unit is, but you can't see what the individual units are. This includes your units, the positioning of which is kind of important.
Anyway, I do exactly the same thing I did last time, choosing all my cards and starting the map.
- Flunky: Boss! The enemy can use magic!
- Milanor: Keep your guard up, guys! If we don't join up with the Royal Army, we're in trouble... Actually, I went through most of Normal mode without using Durant. The other spear user's good enough.
Naturally, the first thing that happens, before I'm given a chance to do anything, is that the Imperial forces get a surprise round. They use it to attack Durant with a nearby knight, who just barely defeats Durant before chopping off an ultimately insignificant amount of morale. You're technically on a timer to meet up with Durant before he goes down, but he can take care of himself.
Furthermore, the designers were evidently too frustrated by the Riovannes Rooftop battle
to subject the player to annoying escort missions, because NPC forces never do anything.
At any rate, Milanor currently has a knight and a fencer next to him, with another knight preventing me from attacking either of them. Eudy's forces are a non-issue for the moment, content simply to watch the carnage.
I use Steal to send Milanor up to the knight in my way, then attack. The knight takes quite a bit of damage, but he had enough morale to survive. I move Yggdra up too because I need to put her next to Durant to win this part of the fight.
On the enemy's next turn, they attack Durant again with the same knight, who loses but doesn't die.
On my turn, I have Milanor attack the knight with Banshee's Cry. He does a critical hit, winning the fight 8-0 and killing the poor sod. I also move Yggdra up to a fencer directly west of the knight who Durant's been murdering. Sadly, he wins against her.
On my next turn, I have Milanor introduce the knight Durant's been fighting to the benefits of a good old-fashioned Revolution. There are no survivors, but the fencer moves into the guy's place, and the other fencer hits Milanor for a decent bit of damage.
My next turn sees Yggdra getting some revenge on the fencer who crushed her earlier by way of Mind Change. With him dead, I move Milanor back to force the last fencer to commit suicide on Durant's lance. Durant accepts his resignation from life.
The force that was attacking Durant is now officially wiped out. There's one more knight, but he's only there because every force needs a commander. He can't actually be killed, either, thanks to his Morale Protect status; it leaves him with one morale no matter what.
I don't think I need to document what card I used to move Yggdra and Milanor next to Durant and finish this part of the fight up.
Rendezvous! -Joined allies!-
Strategy succeeded! -Successfully rendezvoused with Durant!-
- Milanor: We did it! 3rd Cavalry, your reinforcements are here!
Acquisition! -Help has arrived!-
- Royal Soldier (Knight): Who are you!?
- Flunky: Whaddya mean, who are we!? We're here to save your bacon!
- Royal Soldier (Knight): Help...? You're allies!?
- Milanor: I'm Milanor, the leader of these lovable scamps. Who's Durant? Well, you'd want to look for the guy with a unique portrait.
- Young Knight: I am he. Brave thief, what is it you ask of me? As is frustratingly common, your profession in fiction can be determined entirely by your attire even outside of the tourism industry.
- Milanor: I'm here to return something you lost.
- Yggdra: Durant!
- Durant: Princess!? You're safe...!
- Yggdra: These men saved me... It is good to see you unharmed as well.
- Durant: That I am... However, my ranks have been somewhat thinned.
- Yggdra: ............ I would hate to see the thoughts of people who think multiple ellipses are good punctuation.
- Durant: Fortunately, my pride as a Royal Knight has suffered no damage! This line is hilarious when you consider how Yggdra Union handles damage. Princess, this is for you.
- Yggdra: This is... the White Phoenix! The Fantasinian flag...
- Durant: The White Phoenix stands for justice. I'm pretty sure there's no J in there, Durant. You are the throne's sole heir... the Kingdom's last hope... The Royal Cavalry shall fight alongside you to the end! We are at your command!
- Yggdra: ...B-But... What should I...? Come on! If that Marth idiot can lead an army, so can you!
- Milanor: You want what's yours? Then, there's only one thing to do...
- Yggdra: ...I understand. To defeat the Empire that took our homes and families... To bring peace back to our kingdom of Fantasinia... I hereby form the Royal Liberation Army!
- Royal Soldier (Knight): Long live the Princess!
- Durant: I will fight for Paltina until I breathe my last! (Durant joined the party!)
(Card get: Ace Guard)
- Durant: Bronquia has placed a blockade on Paltina, our capital. Expect a lot of this sort of thing from Durant. It comes with the territory of being the only party member outside of the main cast with an active role in the story. However, they have not yet attacked the eastern regions... We should retreat to the east and regroup.
- Milanor: Sounds about right. We're short on manpower.
- Yggdra: I understand. We shall make for the east, then.
- Royal Soldier (Knight): Princess! The Imperial Army is giving chase! Their lead force is Eudy's sorceress unit! This is the one time Eudy leads anything in the entire game. She prefers to fight battles she isn't going to lose, you see.
- Milanor: Tch... They don't make it easy for us, do they?
- Yggdra: Durant...?
- Durant: Princess, in order to safely advance east... We must attack our pursuers to prevent them from following.
"The enemy force is to the west. However, they are not east of us. Therefore, we should go east. Getting rid of the pursuers might be a good idea, too."
Durant's supposed to be the Royal Army's strategist. I'm just not feeling it, though.
- Milanor: He's right. If there's enemies ahead, we could be caught in between.
- Yggdra: Very well. Let's engage them here!
- Milanor: We all on the same page? Good... Now, let's get 'em!
Near the Spring: Check Point!
- If Yggdra or Milanor dies...
- If you use up all your cards...
Midstream: Check Point!
- Magician: They won't escape me! I was so close... If it wasn't for those meddling thieves...
- Imperial Soldier (Fencer): Magister, they seem to have taken refuge up ahead!
- Magician: I see. Hurry, everyone! If we let them escape, then it was all a waste of time!
- Imperial Soldier (Fencer): Yes, Magister!
- Milanor: Ha! Look at that formation!
- Durant: Their haste is their undoing... They couldn't stay together.
- Milanor: Now's our chance. This should be a piece of cake!
- Durant: Esq. Milanor, please take care of the Princess. I'll—
- Yggdra: No. I'll fight with you.
- Milanor: Don't worry about her, Durant. She can handle herself.
- Yggdra: That's right.
- Milanor: It'll speed things up, too. You know what else would speed things up? If you would just STOP TALKING!
- Durant: ...Very well. Please be careful, Princess.
- Yggdra: Thank you, but you need not worry. Onward!
. This is the first place where I can use Unions, where multiple characters attack during the same turn. Basically, each unit has formation line thingies that extend two spaces away from them in a cross pattern (diagonal for guys, and a straight cross for girls), and any allied units within the formation are dragged into battle with you. If one side outnumbers the other, the side with fewer units will have to endure repeat battles where their units take penalties.
I'll explain it better in a mechanics update. For now, though, let's look at Durant's stats:
- Gen: 3.0
- Atk: 3.0
- Tec: 2.0
- Luk: 1.7
And here's his maximum stats:
- Gen: 6
- Atk: 5
- Tec: 4
- Luk: 2
Durant's abilities are the standard for knights, and they are as follows:
- Road advantage
- Bridge advantage
- Weakness against Griffon Riders
- Forest disadvantage
- Holy attack Up (from equipment)
In addition to the Holy Up effect, Durant's Paladin Lance is boosting his Gen and Atk by a full point each.
Anyway, on with the battle. My units are all bunched up in a corner, with Durant leading against a knight who's in union with another knight on a bridge.
Yggdra is in union with Durant, set to fight said knight.
Naturally, I want to move her out of the way. I use Steal, moving her a space west, right next to a tree.
Kokori Woods: Check Point!
- Yggdra: What are these...? They're quite abundant here. (Item get: Kokorinut) Mmm, they have a pleasant scent.
I then move Milanor a square up, to Yggdra's former position. Both he and Durant crush their opponents, but the bridge knight lives through the ordeal. I then move Yggdra around to the left side of the tree, where...
Bushes: Check Point!
- Yggdra: Oh! What was that...!? (Item get: Trap) That was dangerous... Someone could have been hurt!
So now I've got myself a Trap. Admiral Akbar would...actually be totally indifferent to that. I move Milanor east, in union with Yggdra, to help protect her from the fencer right next to her.
Eudy, brilliant tactician that she is, moves her units randomly, then moves the bridge knight off the bridge
, allowing Milanor to slay him with ease.
Slain! -A warrior has fallen.-
- Imperial Soldier (Knight): Th-This can't be...!
Also, bridge knight was the enemy commander for all non-magic forces on the map, so they all die with him. Way to go, Eudy.
I proceed to select Revolution, which is used to move Durant to where the bridge knight died. He takes the man's Medallion, then takes up a position upon the bridge. I move Milanor into his union, then have Yggdra proceed south with the one remaining point of movement.
I also battle save, just in case.
As expected, the witch who attacks cannot get through Durant's bridge advantage with her whopping 1 Atk. She brought a friend, but Milanor chopped her up almost effortlessly.
For my next turn, I choose Banshee's Cry, which has the important quality of having enough movement to get Durant to the next witch while also allowing Yggdra to visit a nearby house. This cannot be done at night, and it's evening this turn.
Nomad Village: Check Point!
- Hunter: Say, that's some fine fur you've got there. Give it here, and I'll make you something good. (Item changed: Fur to Fur Coat)
As a side note, this game contains both "town" and "village" terrain. I refuse to believe that this wasn't done specifically to screw one particular character over.
The next witch, alone due to Eudy's incompetence, falls easily to Durant's lance, but hangs on with a bit of morale.
The enemy turn goes poorly for Durant, but he has enough Gen that it doesn't really matter. Eudy also takes the bridge I was planning to use, but I use Sanctuary to kill her last backup witch. This forces her to move forward, where she notices Yggdra...
- Magician: Huh? You're...!?
- Yggdra: We won't be stopped here!
Eudy proceeds to killdoze her way through Yggdra and Milanor, but Yggdra levels up off of it.
- Magician: I've got you now!
- Yggdra: No... the battle is far from over...!
- Magician: I can't let you go wherever you please, can I?
On my next turn, I bring out Sanctuary. With it, and using Milanor and Durant as meatshields, Yggdra is able to eke out a win.
- Magician: Don't think I'll go easy on you!
- Durant: No... The battle has just begun...!
- Magician: Tired already? It'll only get worse from here on out!
After that, I move Yggdra back one space. Eudy once again dominates, but I subsequently use Banish to move Durant on to the bridge. Turns out I didn't need to, though, because a lucky counter from Yggdra gives her enough of an advantage to win when Eudy strikes her.
I then use Mirage to move Milanor next to Eudy to flank her.
- Magician: You mean... They were waiting to ambush us!?
- Milanor: Get ready!
Eudy does not get through the subsequent battle. She takes Yggdra down a notch, but Milanor puts her in her place.
Pull Back! -Time to regroup!-
- Imperial Soldier (Fencer): Magister Eudy!
Justice Prevailed! -Defeated the Imperial Army!-
- Eudy: We're overpowered... I hate to do it, but we have to retreat. Well, I still think this is the most dangerous fight in the game. I'd say we're about even.
- Royal Soldier (Fencer): The Imperial Army is retreating!
- Durant: Princess, shall we give chase? This coming from the guy who suggested we not charge right into the Bronquian main force.
- Milanor: No time! Looks like another company's moving in!
(Some valkyries appear north of the Royal Army's position.)
Grasslands: Check Point!
Reinforcements! -Help has arrived!-
- Protective Guard: Commander Aegina! Magister Eudy's unit is...! Yes, these units are called "Protective Guards". Also, they're all valkyries.
- Aegina: Tch... We were too late. Hey, it's the lady from the first map! If you think it's weird that she got all the way around here...wait. The explanation will arrive in about a million billion years. They seem to be nothing more than a loose band of rabble... Destroy them, men! Charge!
- Defeat the Valkyrie Aegina!
- If Yggdra or Milanor dies...
- If you use up all your cards...
- Yggdra: Are they a pursuit unit as well?
- Milanor: Probably. We should deal with them while we're at it. Let's show 'em what we got!
Fortunately, Aegina's unit is significantly less dangerous than Eudy's on account of being armed with swords. One of them immediately kills herself with Durant's spear, demonstrating kindergarten-level tactical knowledge.
As usual, I lead with Steal, which is used to move Durant forward to another valkyrie. I also take Eudy's Ruby Staff, which she dropped because Milanor killed her. That thing made her quite dangerous, I'll tell you that much...
Yggdra then moves into Durant's union. When she goes aggressive she does holy damage, which valkyries are immune to, but they also do holy damage in Rage mode, so I'm not worried.
Aegina herself has a Flamberg, which I'm not going to try to get. Only Milanor can make her drop it, and she's stronger than him.
Durant kills the valkyrie he was attacking without Yggdra having to do anything. This is basically his mission, honestly. There are two bridges to abuse, then you fight a bunch of sword users.
On Aegina's turn, she moves up to Durant.
- Aegina: The Royal Army... I won't let you escape!
- Durant: We will give no quarter and expect none. Loonies are better anyway.
- Aegina: Can you fight as bravely as you talk, knight of the Kingdom?
As expected, Aegina can't take Durant in a fair fight. Her last mook nearly took Yggdra down, though.
- Durant: Surrender, and we will spare your lives.
- Aegina: I haven't fallen so far that I want the enemy's pity!
Some Banshee's Cry-brand awesomeness ensues, taking Aegina down to a sliver of morale. Yggdra's down to 527 herself, though, so I move her out of the way.
It doesn't matter to Durant, who takes down the rest of Aegina's forces on his own and levels up.
Justice Prevailed! -The Valkyrie Aegina was annihilated!-
Pull Back! -Time to regroup!-
- Aegina: What? How!? They're not even real warriors...
- Protective Guard: Commander Aegina! It's dangerous to remain here!
- Aegina: Tch! Very well... Withdraw! (Aegina's unit leaves the map.)
The quick clear bonus requires you to finish in 32 turns. I took 38. Still, Durant got MVP and an extra small star of Tec.
I also get Eudy's card, Flame. It has 1350 power and 7 movement, and its skill is moderately useful.
- Yggdra: ...We made it...
- Milanor: You're not bad with a sword, y'know that? That's barely a sword. It's more like a giant steel wedge with a hilt.
- Yggdra: I was just desperate...
- Milanor: Still, we can chalk up the Liberation Army's first win.
- Durant: Plus, we've bought ourselves plenty of time. Let's use it well and get some distance between us and here.
- Yggdra: As you say.
Music this update:
That fight could've gone better. I won't pretend to be an expert on this game, but I can say that the fight with Eudy here is one of the most utterly cruel things this game does. She's a rod user at a point when you have no rod users of your own. She's also armed with a weapon that makes her attacks in Rage mode stronger, effectively doubling her time in Max mode. Yggdra, who has Block Counter due to her Silk Corset, needed a significant battle penalty just to break even against her without plenty of luck.
By comparison, Aegina is barely a speed bump. Barring a critical hit, she is not going to defeat Durant. Yggdra and Milanor will have to be more careful, though. Side note: Don't count on elemental immunities if Yggdra's second in line to fight. She may well face a valkyrie in Max mode instead.