Chapter 3: Dungeoneering, Terraportation, and Random Video Game References
The girls are now confident enough to try out a few of the bulletin board quests they read earlier. They head to a tower called the Neo-Geo Front to take on "Speedy Blue Shadow", where the blue shadow had last been seen attacking people.
The interior of the tower is dressed up with futuristic lights that don't seem to have much function other than looking cool. The dungeon is one long, snaking corridor, with a few twists or turns, and only one room where the boss should be. Neptune learns that if they complete their mission quickly enough, they'll receive a nice monetary reward and have their time placed on Planeptune's high score list. (In other words, this generally means skipping all of the battle animations by jamming on the L2 button.)
IF managed to locate a waist part for a "Grand" processor unit. Neptune puts it in her inventory, hoping to find the other parts in other dungeons later.
The boss at the end is a wolf called the "Blue Shadow", which doesn't put up much of a fight. Compa gains a level that she otherwise missed out on when she was knocked out by the witch, and IF picks up a technique called Spectral Edge, and can also use Antidotes (even though they haven't run into any monsters that can use poison yet).
- Enemies: Dogoo, Pixelvader
- Treasures: None.
After completing that quest, they collect their reward of 1000 credits for completing it in record time, and then head back to the Evil Cave to help Director Yuzawa out with his "Soaring Development Fees" problem.
The cave is populated with weak Dogooeys and Pixelvaders, but one of the rooms has a rune that summons a Clione, which is far and away tougher than anything the girls have fought so far, despite its fragile appearance. Killing it proves very lucrative, as it gives out enough experience for all of the girls to level up almost instantly.
- Enemies: Dogooey, Pixelvader
- Treasures: One, with 3 bottles of Gelatin
They only get an "A" rank for this mission, but still get 700 credits from Yuzawa from a job well done. (The first time I did this, I got the lowest "E" rank because I hadn't bothered to skip the battle animations. I probably would have received an "S" on this one if I hadn't gone after the Clione.)
After they leave the dungeon, they stop to listen to Hi-Five Radio, hosted by 5pb, the radio idol. She gets a pair of call-ins from Director Yuzawa (addressed as "Yuzarin"), thanking Neptune and her friends for helping out. He also asks 5pb to offer his feedback on his latest title, now that he has enough Gelatin Cells to to complete his project.
Neptune stops to check out some of the parts that IF picked up from the dungeons they explored. The Grand Heart parts sacrifice some of the Purple Heart parts' strength and speed
for defense and resistance to Earth-elemental attacks
. They also replace Purple Heart's butterfly-like wings with a pair of hulking golem hands.
The Four Lands and Sky Harbors
The four floating landmasses orbit towards and away from one another. The Sky Harbor is used for people to travel between the lands when they come close together. When Neptune's party arrives at Planeptune's Sky Harbor, she wonders if she's supposed to take a big leap of faith to reach the other landmasses. "Why not slap on some overalls and a red hat while you're at it?
" IF jokes, before telling her that they actually use a bridge to cross between them (which is just a short dungeon) whenever one is nearby.
What Is This Big Machine?
A big machine is seen on a recycling truck. Is it antique furniture? Nope. It's a jukebox. An elderly man comes out and tells the girls that the jukebox is beyond obsolete, and has to be thrown away since they don't make parts for it anymore (much like his company, who used to make its living selling jukeboxes).trivia
He waxes nostalgic on the music that he and "kids his age" used to listen to before returning to work. He guesses that it'll probably be fixed by the time they even forget it exists.
Everyone is a Master
The crew arrives at another game company's storage in time to witness the masterful stacking skils of the employees. They watch in awe as a group of loaders transport different-colored and different-shaped boxes into a truck, trying to organize them so that they all fit inside without leaving any gaps...except for one long, thin gap on one end of the truck. Remind you of anything?
Everyone passes by and watches a mysterious group of fighters on the street destroying random objects. One group is attacking flying barrels, while another set (which Neptune refers to as "road pugilists
", and include a sumo wrestler and a cute Chinese girl with really big thighs) are wailing on old, beat-up cars with their bare hands.
It's unusual for IF to accept a bounty job alone. As she realizes how helpful a party can be, she hears a scream from nearby. When IF goes to investigate the scream, she gets tackled by a cheerful girl wearing a red dress and a golden dragon wrapped around it. The girl, who calls herself Red*
, takes one look at IF and declares that she's going to be her first "wifey" before suddenly going off to look for more.
After her short ordeal with Red, IF returns to Neptune and Compa, and they go to check out the new quests on the bulletin board together for new quests.
Keeping Peace and Order
Client: Planeptune Resident
There are more monsters, but less manpower to deal with them. Please help get rid of the monsters in Planeptune! It's simple. Just go to the ruin and take down five Jakis.
Recommended Level: 6 [Party Level: 6]
This quest takes the group to the lower level of the Sealed Ruin to find their bounty. The Jakis are large, club-wielding brutes who love to dish out damage, but aren't very strong when it comes to magical defense. They find the Leg parts for the Grand Heart CPU, which seem to come easier than finding the Jakis they're actually supposed to be hunting.
- Enemies: Pixelvader, Jaki, Imp, Dogoo
- Treasures: Character Badge
Client: Planeptune Defense Force
We want you to defeat ten Dogoos in the tower. Be careful though. I have a feeling something else really powerful exists in the tower besides the Dogoos.
Recommended Level: 6 [Party Level: 7]
For this one, they head off to the second floor of the Normal Tower. Neptune wonders why they chose to hold the mission on the second floor of the tower rather than the first, and Compa tells her that it's because the second floor appears to be a breeding ground for the slimy buggers. They come away with a Head piece for the Grand Heart Unit, but IF demands that they double-check the room to make sure they didn't leave any treasures behind.
- Enemies: Dogoo, Pixelvader
- Treasures: Two, with a total of 8 bottles of Reflex
Before they decide to exit Planeptune, they see a strange request on the quest board:
Giant Bull Awakens*
Client: The Sanctified
The Big Buffalo at the Sealed Ruin has awakened. We can't risk it coming near town. Could someone go take care of it?
Recommended Level: 7
Neptune's party heads off to the middle section of the ruin to go after it. Compa spots another Clione, and the girls have little trouble disposing of it. During their battle, Compa notices that the Clione doesn't seem to take much damage from fire bullets, so she switches to earth bullets to make the battle go faster. The "magic bullets" from her syringe also seem to be more effective compared to Neptune and IF, since her abilities lean more towards ranged combat than melee attacks.
Just before they reach the boss, IF locates a hidden treasure chest containing a bamboo sword, which somehow has more striking power than the iron katana Neptune purchased from Amazoo before they went dungeon-hunting. Their target is a large, armored bull that can occasionally hit hard enough to paralyze its target, causing their attacks to fail. Compa is hit by this early on, but it wears off quickly enough to get her back in the battle. She also notices that her earth bullets have no effect on the creature, which gives Neptune an idea. Using the parts of the Grand Heart CPU she'd assembled thus far, she transforms, offering herself a good deal of protection against the Big Bull's attacks.
- Enemies: Pixelvader, Dogoo, Imp
- Treasures: Two, with a total of 17 bottles of Reflex
With nothing left to do on Planeptune (for the party's level, anyway), they listen to some more praise from the populace on Hi-Five Radio before they make their first big leap...
(Note: There isn't any English-language voice acting for Red's and 5pb's skits, but those same scenes have fully-voiced dialogue if you switch the voices to Japanese. What's up with that?)