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Let's Play Golden Sun: Dark Dawn
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Let's Play Golden Sun: Dark Dawn:

 1 spiritsunami, Wed, 24th Nov '10 4:54:36 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
With the US release of Golden Sun: Dark Dawn just a few days away, I'm taking this opportunity to put in a claim for a playthrough topic. As this is a brand new game, this thread will obviously be spoiler-heavy, and those who did not play the first two games will have even more to look out for. Now, we will be working under two assumptions. The first is that Camelot fixed that exploitable random number generator, and thusly we will not be munchkinning to colect rare items. (Besides, it can only be done properly if you're powerful enough to kill the enemy before they can get a move in, so probably not the best thing to do while still playing through for the first time.)

The second is that the old codes for changing the entire party's names do still work. This means we've got 8 names to create—first party of four is three males and one female; second party is two and two. Yes, that means you're voting on names. And this thread is running across two forums, so vote totals are not as they appear. Voting ends...well, I guess when I get the game, I'll tell you to stop. I'm picking it up the first day it's out, which is Monday, November 29.

edited 24th Nov '10 8:40:13 PM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 2 spiritsunami, Thu, 25th Nov '10 4:41:12 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Ouch. Stonewalled on both sides.
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 3 spiritsunami, Tue, 30th Nov '10 3:31:11 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Okay, so we don't get to rename anyone but the main character. I input my own name and begin.

We start with a rather long recap of the history of Weyard, how Alchemy was sealed and how 30 years ago, the Warriors of Vale saved the world by lighting the Lighthouses, and how they are both praised for their efforts and blamed for all the troubles that unleashing Alchemy has caused. Mostly, stuff we already knew from the first two games. It's probably not a bad idea that they're recapping, though, because it's been seven years since the last game came out and there will be plenty of new fans, as well as old ones who need a reminder of what happened.

Finally, we get to some new exposition, about how even though Vale is gone, Isaac and Garet still watch Mt. Aleph from nearby Goma Plateau, and also train their children to be warriors.

The first conversation begins, and there's a prompt for me to click on it on the touch screen. I learn that by tapping on names in conversations, I can add data on those people to my encyclopedia. I click on my own name and learn that I am a promising Earth Adept, just like my father was when he started his adventures 30 years ago, and also that just like Isaac, I am a person of few words but strong convictions. Yes, we haven't even gotten to control our character yet, and already they're hanging lampshades. Glad to see Camelot hasn't lost their sense of humor.

In the same conversation, I gain entries on Mount Aleph, the Golden Sun, Alchemy, Angara, Weyard, Sol Sanctum, the Wise One, Isaac, Garet, Psyenergy Vortexes, the Mourning Moon, Vale, Soarwings, Karis, Tyrell, and Ivan. Fun fact: Apparently, the Wise One is a Philosopher's Stone. As for the ones that aren't recappy, psyenergy vortexes are distortions in space that suck the elemental energy out of the world—and from Adepts—thought to be an aftereffect caused by the Golden Sun event; the Mourning Moon was a particularly devastating psyenergy vortex that ravaged central Angara. Soarwings are a device that Ivan invented that allows their wearer to glide upon the winds. Karis and Tyrell are Ivan's daughter and Garet's son, respectively.

We get our first chance to input an emotion, regarding Tyrell taking the soarwing and going up on the roof. The choices are smile, [lol], sad, and...well, this forum doesn't seem to have a sufficient emoticon, but the fourth choice is anger. Neither of the smiling ones are right, but I'm not really sad or angry, just disappointed. It looks like Tyrell is just as hotheaded as his father. I pick the angry option, but apparently it wasn't Tyrell I was talking to at the time, so it ends up with me getting mad at Garet for being concerned about Tyrell up on the roof. I manage to get a little control, but before long, the conversation starts up again. When can I save this damn game?

I go up to the roof, where I'm told to go talk him down. This time I choose the happy face, expressing my confidence that I can do it, but again I'm misconstrued, this time as egging him on. Damnit, it's easier to express myself properly in a dating sim. And...he takes off. We get entries on Psyenergy and Adepts. As Tyrell drops to the forest, I express concern with a sad face...wrong again.

edited 30th Nov '10 3:35:45 PM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 4 spiritsunami, Tue, 30th Nov '10 6:32:12 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Upon finally gaining control of my character, I get put through a number of forced tutorials, including saving, putting on equipment, etcetera. Karis actually puts the cap on my character, which I think is extremely cute. I knew I'd made a good choice with that fic, even if I got teased a bit for starting a fanfic for a game that wasn't even out yet. But that aside...I manage to get a few choices correct, and we find Isaac and Garet talking behind our backs. Karis gets incensed, and the adults comment that she's awfully fiery for a Wind Adept. (Again, looks like I did well with the characterization.) I finally get to battling. The first couple of enemies are weak enough that regular attacks do the trick. Karis seems to be getting a lot of criticals. She's also quicker to master her weapon, whatever that means. Then we encounter a movable pillar and get another forced tutorial, despite the fact that I initiated the use of Move without prompting—and this was commented on. Upon first encountering a group of three enemies, I look for multi-target Psyenergy. I...have none. My only Psyenergy are Cure and Growth. Karis has Whirlwind, though, and it takes the entire group out in one hit, before I can even move. Sweet. We get through Goma Plateau and enter the Tanglewood, at which point Isaac and Garet are quite concerned. We finally decide to enter, and Isaac decides to let me continue to lead, despite the possibility of tougher enemies. They offer to jump in if things get out of hand, however, though I won't be controlling them. Also, they decide to lend the two of us some Djinn, and then ask me if I know how to use Djinn. I say yes, at which point... they show me the goddamn tutorial anyway! By this point, I'm getting to my destination, and my battery light has already been showing low for much of the car ride, so I save as soon as the tutorial ends and turn the game off.
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
I was also a little amused/irritated at how no matter what emoticon I chose, the characters always thought I was being contrary.

This whole prologue's pretty lengthy. I think it was just over an hour before I got to set foot on the world map.

edited 30th Nov '10 7:29:32 PM by ComicX6

 6 spiritsunami, Wed, 1st Dec '10 12:16:55 AM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Reasons why I shouldn't Let's Play handheld games: my tendency to play under the covers at night. Isaac and Garet gave more suggestions, some of which were actually decent. They didn't need to do anything until the boss, a Tangle Bloom, at which point Isaac unleashed Flint in addition to the Djinn we'd already unleashed. Then we summoned Cybele to finish it off. Awesome. Anyway, once Tyrell was rescued, we recovered the broken soarwing and headed off to get some rare items to fix it. Isaac and Garet were going to just send me and Tyrell, but of course Karis managed to talk her way onto the team. waii Flint comes out and says that Isaac sent him to protect me, and I soon manage to pick up Forge as well. Then we go to the Psyenergy Training Ground, a series of tests that vaguely resemble the story of the first two games. After previous "enemies" (That is, painted signs) merely needed to be hit with the Fireball Psyenergy, however, the final one turned out to be a real battle. Presenting...the Dim Dragon! Yes, the final boss of Golden Sun: The Lost Age has been reduced to a bunch of boards painted to look vaguely menacing. How is it even going to attack? Well, it's made of wood, so it should be weak against Fire. I have Tyrell use Fireball while I use Flint and Karis attacks with the new bow I bought her at the store. Oh...now I see the side view, and it turns out there are also some gears in this thing. Its "claws" seem to be spring-loaded. So it's actually this awesome medieval machine, like they used in the plays to make gods appear. And...upon one attack, Karis manages to master the bow's Double Shot ability. The girl's a natural at fighting. The dragon uses Gasping Breath. Turn two, I have Karis boost us with Forge while the other two attack. I then crit with the short sword, dealing 33 damage. This could be good... Turn 3, Karis attacks, I summon Venus, and Tyrell summons Mars. The dragon uses Scary Jinx, which is ineffective. Turn 4, more straight-up attacks, and we bust up the machine, bringing the party to Level 5 and teaching Tyrell Starburst. Also, Nut get. Wait...Now I must choose between two chests! I choose the one on the left and get the Gate Card, which is apparently a fairly important item. I wonder if this was another one of those meaningless choices and I'd get the Gate Card either way, or if there's something else I need to get by challenging the course again and picking the one on the right.

edited 1st Dec '10 12:19:38 AM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 7 spiritsunami, Wed, 1st Dec '10 9:06:27 AM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
I moved on to Carver's camp and save a little boy from a Psyenergy Vortex and watch a scene where Carver crosses the gap with the help of the Grip Psyenergy. I then get another Djinni, Chill, and end up going to Carver's Lumberyard, which provides a shortcut back to the settlement. It looks like something isn't right, though, so I explore the Lumberyard a bit more, and find the tablet for Zagan. Sweet! I then find a Mars Djinni on the map, which turns out to be Fever, and continue on to the Konpa Ruins, finding the Venus Djinni Flower at the gate. The ruin provides a series of tests in theme for each adept. I find an Elven Shirt, which I give to Tyrell because he's so damn slow, and then I find the Grip Crystal and use it to help claim the Jupiter Djinni Jolt, which revives an ally. I then enter the cave below the ruins, and find a chest with an Elven Rapier, which I take for myself. I start to turn back, thinking I've hit a dead end, but soon find that the way back is a dead end. Since my last save was inside the cave, I turn off the game for the night.

edited 2nd Dec '10 8:48:36 PM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 8 spiritsunami, Wed, 1st Dec '10 9:25:19 AM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Ack. Yeah, how did I miss that obvious path onwards? tongue Let's blame it on the fact that it was nearing 5 AM and I hadn't slept at all. Before another enemy can challenge me, I get to a cutscene where Kraden is talking to a man (?) named Nowell. No, wait, it is a woman, and apparently she's Rief's sister. Rief's there, too, and like an idiot, he approaches the vortex. Kraden says he heard the sound of a machine starting when the vortex pulsed. Then they notice the machine near our position, and Nowell offers to investigate, only to be shot at. Kraden finally notices us, but three menacing soldiers are closing in! Boss battle time! Oh, hey, I get to "speak"! (Speech bubble: "!!!") Stealthy Scout x3 appeared! I have Karis cast Plasma while I use Flint on the left one and Tyrell uses Fever on the same. Two of them use a powerful attack called Stifle Shot that also lowers agility, and the third uses a psy grenade to sap our PP. Time to use Forge and Flower, along with another Plasma. Luckily, two of the three choose to not attack. I have Karis use Fresh Breeze to heal Tyrell and me some more while both of us unleash Zagan. Agh, they have herbs! I cure Karis while she and Tyrell continue to attack the center one. Oh no, too late! Karis is down, and we're out of Psyenergy! I use a Psy Crystal while Tyrell uses a Bramble Seed. They merely use herbs and a useless Psy Grenade (remember, they're quicker than us now). ...HOLY SHIT THAT BRAMBLE SEED WAS STRONG! Only the one on the right, who had yet to be the focus of an attack, remains. I aim Spire at him and have Tyrell use Fever. Now my agility's back to normal, so I Spire for the win before he can go any further. I get a psy grenade of my own, and I grow to level 11. Cutscene begin...OH NOES RIEF IS MISSING!
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 9 spiritsunami, Wed, 1st Dec '10 10:09:26 AM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
A shadowy figure appears. And then a second, who says he does know Kraden, unlike his ally...hmm, care to take a guess? It looks just a tad like Alex. Probably-Alex asks me if I've been entrusted with the Glyph Book. I respond with angry-face. They appear, and the first shadowy figure is identified as Blados. Alex is identified only as "Masked Man", though Kraden seems to recognize his voice. Rief is to be left at one of the two exits, tied up and easy prey for wandering beasts. We are to search the South Exit. A complicated log-rolling puzzle, and then two of Blados's men use dynamite to collapse the entrance to the cave we were just in. Tyrell calls him out on the trap, but Blados insists we're free to go. When asked why he's here, he says, "Is it a crime to come say goodbye? We're just here to see such GREAT warriors off." I think I like this guy's moxie. We leave, like he tells us to, and then we see a hopping crate. We open it, and sure enough, Rief is inside. Blados comes to taunt us again, and reveals that he's been ordered to let us live until we've played our parts. I don't like the sound of that. Blados leaves, and Rief joins the party. We head south to Harapa, winning a sleep bomb in a battle with some pixies. We get a Magic Rod for Karis and a Witch's Wand for Rief, then upgrade to Leather Armor for me, a Circlet for Karis and an Open Helm for me and Tyrell, and Travel Robes for Rief and Karis. Back at the weapons shop, I buy a Hunter's Sword for Tyrell. I then revive Karis and check out Rief's Djinn. Just one, Sleet. I move Chill over to him. We enter a fortune-teller's tent, and make Nhamu, fortune-teller of the distant future, collapse in fear. Awesome! Once again I get lost, though I manage to find the Mars Djinni Cinder. I switch it with Forge, since Karis already has Jolt. (In case you've lost count, we now have three Mars Djinn, two Venus Djinn, two Mercury Djinn, and only one Jupiter Djinn. Finally, I try leaving the city through another exit, and it triggers a cutscene that tells us to go to the mountain town of Passaj. No points for guessing how it got its name.
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 10 spiritsunami, Wed, 1st Dec '10 11:01:28 AM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
We pick up the Venus Djinni Bark on the way to Passaj, then fire up something called an Alchemy Forge. Passaj and the path leading up to it are filled with a floating stone called zol. We meet the Passaj elder, Bogho, and suffer through some hilarious misunderstandings. We're now on a fetch quest to retrieve the Sol Mask from the Ouroboros Labyrinth. (By the way, you can get some hilarious spell-checker results on these names. "Djinni" brings back "Dinnie, Dinning, Jinnah, Djibouti", while "Ouroboros" brings back "Corroborates, Corroborators, Borobudur, Corroborate"—but when I misspelled it "Ourobouros", it brought back "Troubadours, Osbourne, Bourgeois, Bourbons". Sounds like a wild night.) Tasked to go to Ayuthay to talk to a man named Amiti, we take a shortcut down the mountain and...I save and turn off, because the out-of-game me is HUNGRY!!!!!!!!! Also, battery running low again.

edited 1st Dec '10 11:02:04 AM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 11 spiritsunami, Thu, 2nd Dec '10 4:54:00 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
I head towards Ayuthay, but am able to get nowhere, so I head to Kaocho instead. Two Djinn are visible, but one of them I can find no route to and the other is blocked by an NPC that won't move. Upon entering the palace, I meet Chalis, who commands soldiers awfully similar to those that Blados had. Very suspicious... Her affiliation with Blados is soon confirmed. King Wo thinks we're here to help him. Tyrell asks me what idiots these guys are for thinking that. I respond with angry face, trying to get angry at him, but he misunderstands me as being angry at the Kaocho. (You idiot, play along! We'll double-cross those villains later.) We then gain permission to enter Ayuthay. Ah, such idiotic villains...Tyrell again misunderstands my intentions and mouths off to the king...again. Then we get sent through a trap-door into the dungeon. TYREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEELL!!!!!!!!!!!!

edited 2nd Dec '10 5:01:39 PM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 12 spiritsunami, Thu, 2nd Dec '10 5:34:13 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
The path out of the dungeon was almost stupidly straightforward—I think Sol Sanctum had tougher puzzles. I then leave for Ayuthay and enter, picking up some stat-boosting items on the way. I give the Apple to Karis, who has the lowest attack, and take the Cookie myself since I probably need the PP more than Tyrell. The Kaocho generals are real pricks, so I don't mind going against them. I get to the innermost sanctum and play the tree flute in front of the magic tree, which obviously belongs to the Virola genus. When we come to, we talk to Amiti, who I hope will give me the ability to attack twice per turn. He offers to take us to King Paithos, and that's all for tonight, because A. the Eagles game is starting, and B. I gave my sister a new DS game for Chanukkah tonight, only it turns out she's misplaced her own DS, so I might as well let her borrow mine.

edited 2nd Dec '10 7:43:00 PM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 13 spiritsunami, Thu, 2nd Dec '10 8:11:31 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
We follow Amiti, on railroad tracks, and talk to Paithos. We learn that Amiti is King Paithos's nephew, and that Amiti's mother, Veriti, was a Mercury Adept and also that she's dead. We also learn that everyone in Ayuthay, including Amiti himself, was led to believe that Amiti was an immaculate conception, but that this is not actually the case. Then we learn that it wasn't Veriti who restarted the Alchemy Well, but rather, it was Amiti's father, a powerful Adept. And...he was very mysterious, and left before anyone could really get to know him; only Veriti ever really saw his face. ALEX, YOU MAGNIFICENT BASTARD! The conversation continues, and after a discussion in which we learn that the Alchemy Well needed the Luna Mask to work, and that the Well's true potential can only be unlocked with the help of the Forge, we get the Lens of Truth Insight Glass—or rather, a quest to find it. It's in the Water Temple, submerged in Lake Hylia the Temple of Barai, submerged in Barai Pond. (Wait, the Lens of Truth was in Kakariko Well! Stop mixing your metaphors, Camelot!) Amiti joins the party. (Hmm...this father of his sounds like an awfully good person. Golden Sun Wiki doesn't give any conclusive answers as to who his father is, but suggests that it could just as easily be Piers as Alex.) Anyway, we get voices about a Sand Prince, then get a warning on a sign: "Here sleeps the Sand Prince. Beware the royal guardian if you cannot prove yourself in battle." Sounds like it's time for another boss battle! We find a strange rock, and the items menu pops open, so I play the tree flute and talk to the Sand Prince, who says he must test me.

edited 2nd Dec '10 8:24:58 PM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 14 spiritsunami, Thu, 2nd Dec '10 8:37:52 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Bark, Fever, Forge, Sleet. Go time. He uses a regular attack. Next turn, I have Karis attack normally while Tyrell summons Kirin, I use Flint, and Rief uses Chill. Another attack hits Rief, so I utilize Flower and Fresh Breeze, while Tyrell, with his boosted Fire Power, uses Heat Wave and Rief summons Nereid. Sand Prince uses Eruption on Rief, and it nearly takes him out even after all the healing. I use Cure Well on Rief, as well as a Ply because I expect him to be damaged again on the Sand Prince's turn and Rief is slower than the Mercury Adept, while Karis uses Wind Slash and Tyrell uses Fireball. I guessed wrong, as he targets Karis. Summon Cybele, use Forge, Volcano, and a regular attack from Rief. Cure on Karis, Fresh Breeze, Fever, and Sleet. The entire party is hit by an Earthquake...but Rief's hit finishes it, and does so in style! That's gonna be an EXP boost! Also, a level-up for Tyrell, Karis and myself, and Karis learns Healthy Wind (WE NEED MORE JUPITER DJINN!) while Tyrell gains Nova (meaning I'm no longer the only one who can hit five).

edited 2nd Dec '10 8:47:55 PM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 15 spiritsunami, Sat, 4th Dec '10 6:32:09 AM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
We enter the temple and start raising and lowering water levels. I learn that Arid Heat, the psyenergy that Tyrell learned using the item we got for beating the Sand Prince, is not just a utility Psyenergy, and furthermore, it has stronger derivatives. This makes him the most powerful psyenergist we have right now. What? The temple is fairly short, and we easily get to the end. I expect another "test", but instead, the Insight Glass just chooses its wielder. Yes, it choose its wielder. It's Amiti, who hasn't actually been a member of the party yet. We get to see it in action and it reveals the obvious, that the way to get out of the chamber is with Whirlwind. However, it soon reveals something far more useful—how to get the Djinni we saw on the way over there. Tyrell shoots a Fireball at it, which knocks it down and makes it angry. We defeat it, adding it to our crew. We now have...1 Jupiter Djinni and 3 Djinn of each of the other three elements. DAMNIT I WANT JUPITER DJINN! We return to Ayuthay, and Amiti stands up to his uncle and insists on coming along with us, and then something remarkable happens—Amiti's outfit is actually commented upon. He leaves us temporarily to change into something more suitable for adventuring, especially given that our next destination after the Ouroboros is way up in the mountains.

...Wait. The chest with the note in it, I understand, but...what about that other empty chest? Is there something hidden that I could've found if I'd looked with the Insight Glass? Ah crap...
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 16 spiritsunami, Sat, 4th Dec '10 8:01:17 AM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Amiti joins the party. He's a level 14 Aqua Knight, equipped with three Mercury Djinn: Mist, Mellow, and Claw. After confirming that the empty chest was really empty, I exit Ayuthay, and run smack dab into Ku-Tsung and Ku-Embra. They're strong, and Karis goes straight down after a gunpowder bomb does heavy damage to everyone except Amiti, so I have Tyrell use Cinder while I use Bark to shield my party. It doesn't work, though. I use Flower and Mist while summoning Tiamat on the next turn. Ku-Tsung heals with a rice ration while Ku-Embra uses fireworks, further confirming that Kaocho is supposed to be ancient China. Okay, time to go for broke. Cybele, Arid Scorch, Boreas! It works, though before it could strike, Ku-Tsung hit Amiti so hard that it nearly brought him down, impressive considering the fact that Amiti's got ridiculous HP. Paithos comes out and declares Ayuthay's superiority to Kaocho, and Tyrell and Karis warn him that it's dangerous to be haughty right now. Then the generals get tied up and taken prisoner. I return to Ayuthay to heal, then head onward to Kaocho. I try to gain some Insight on how to get the two Djinn, but find nothing to help me get the Venus Djinni. However, speaking to the NPC blocking the path to the Mars Djinni leads to Amiti suggesting that his abilities may be able to help. It appears to show a picture of the dumpling I received from beating the Generals, but I'm unable to get to my items while Insight is on and speaking to the NPC again only triggers Amiti's suggestion. We enter the cave, and Amiti automatically uses Insight to reveal that we need to use the Tree Flute to enter the Ouroboros, so I drain the water and play the Tree Flute to reveal the entrance.
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 17 spiritsunami, Sat, 4th Dec '10 9:18:29 AM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
No enemies ambush me, so it looks like it'll be all puzzles for awhile. I get Ixion Mail, then read some glyphs that say, "SNAKES THAT FLICK THEIR WICKED TONGUES EXPOSE THEIR WEAKNESS: A RECKLESS TASTE FOR FLAME." Or in layman's terms: "Shoot a Fireball at the oddly-colored statue." Even so, I'm momentarily startled when said snake actually shoots its tongue out across the path. Finally, some enemies appear—Salamanders, two of them. I also encounter my first Mimic! Finally, a lone enemy...RAGNAROK! As well as regular attacks from Tyrell (critical) and Karis and a Diamond Dust from Amiti. I then send regular attacks at the defending Mimic, and the first attack of turn 3 wins it. Prize: Psy Crystal. More tongues, and Tyrell gets the Vulcan Axe. And is that? SCORE! How are we going to get it though...oh. Move apparently works on a diagonal now, from good distance and technically straight through two walls. Three moves later, the statue is knocked off the platform, but...that's not going to be tall enough to serve as a platform to bridge the gap. HELP! I WANT THAT JUPITER DJINNI! Insight says! Huh...the snake statue had two Psyenergy symbols, Move and...Growth? No, apparently just move, but...oh. IDIOT! The statue is also there to provide a stopper! I push the Zol block over and Whirlwind it up again, double-hopping over to the Jupiter Djinni. Battle time! It's over quickly, and Karis gains the Jupiter Djinni Vortex. I then send Surge (the Mercury Djinni from the temple) over to Amiti in exchange for Mist, which I then give to Rief. So finally, everyone has Djinn only in their own elements...and Karis is the only one with only two Djinn. I move along, continue to descend, find more runes... "THE SNAKE WILL AWAKEN WHEN THE WIND BLOWS. ONLY THEN MAY THE JENEI CLIMB TO SOL." So, Whirlwind the turbiney-thing. Got it. This triggers a shortcut to the top, where the Zol has turned into a snake-shaped staircase. Sol Mask get! Then an enemy appears and is easily defeated, and Tyrell learns Flare Storm. I continue to poke around Kaocho in hopes of figuring out how to get to the Djinn, and end up stumbling upon another sidequest, receiving the Grandmother's Gift, to be delivered to a man in Sana. Vaguely remembering that there was something I couldn't get to on the ascent, I take the long way up to Passaj. Wait...no, that's wrong. There wasn't anything I couldn't get. I take the short path. Now, to power up the Alchemy Forge! And in the process, open the Passaj armor and weapons shops for business.

...Whoa. Passaj becomes a walled city, and the entire Ayuthay region becomes fertile. Harapa also gets a lot wetter. Bogho and Baghi come out to greet us afterward, and are surprised to see Amiti, and then Amiti gets a surprise of his own. Apparently, we somehow never mentioned to him that we were the children of the Warriors of Vale. Also, Bogho gives us access to Passaj's vault, and any treasures we may find. He also tells us to speak with the elders before we leave. Also, upon entering the weapons/armor shop, we get a free zol ring. It boosts agility, so I give it to the slowest member of our party, Amiti. It turns him into the quickest member of our party. I buy Karis a Psyenergy Rod, then upgrade the party's armor. Before going to the Craggy Peak, I check out the changes in Harapa, only to find that I still can't get anywhere. We enter the treasury and get a Hard Nut, a Prophet's Hat, and a Vial. I use the Hard Nut on Karis, who also gets the Prophet's Hat. Trying to return to the meeting area only gets me another message that entry is prohibited, so I head on to the Craggy Peak. However...the cloud is utterly useless, because it's too fluffy and misty. We learn of the Ice Queen Stone, a counterpart to the Sand Prince Stone, which will likely teach Frost/Tundra/Glacier. Amiti gets another message from the Sand Prince, mentioning a woman who escaped from her gemstone who is hiding in a labyrinth, hoping to never be found. Looks like we've got an Ice Queen who needs to be...Defrosted. YEEEAAAAAAAAH!

And now we're being sent to...Harapa. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARGH!
Baghi: Who was he talking to?

Tyrell: We found a man who was really a gemstone in Ayuthay, and only Amiti can hear him. You've really got to keep up better, Baghi.

Rief: He put up quite a fight before he came along with us, however. So I bet this queen won't come quietly either.

edited 4th Dec '10 9:24:49 AM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 18 spiritsunami, Sat, 4th Dec '10 12:20:29 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Once again, it comes down to "I'm an idiot." Anyway, I was on the go when I fought this battle, so no play-by-play; suffice it to say that it was the usual "use Djinn, summon Djinn" strategy. I even had to use both Jolt and Spark, as Karis and Tyrell went down at separate times during the battle. Then we met Nyunpa, the monk of Fuchin Temple, who had been trapped by the Ice Queen. We also picked up some new armor, and the Mercury Djinni Serac. I'm glad Serac's on board, but we're back to being imbalanced (or, alternatively, balanced, as we now have 15 Djinn and 5 members).

It was nighttime in Harapa when we exited, so magic barriers kept us trapped in the town; luckily, getting out was as simple as resting at the inn to bring on morning. We ascended the Cloud Passage. Tyrell asked how we were supposed to steer the cloud, and Bogho mentioned the wind, so Karis said she'd do her best to blow us across the sky. Sounds like a plan to me. wink A huge gust of wind then took us to the Cloud Passage, where we dodged odd thunderclouds (I really hope they weren't sadistic enough to hide treasure in that godforsaken maze) and eventually made our way to the top of Craggy Peak, which was abandoned. Tyrell confirmed the lack of inhabitants by pointing out that he couldn't smell any food, and Karis said we should ignore Tyrell. Growth helps me get up a ledge, then Grip pulls me across a gap, and after Move reveals a passage, I decide to go up further with another Growth before entering. This brings me to a tablet with runes that say "WE ARE GONE, BUT YOU MAY HARNESS OUR POWER TO FIND THE WAY FORWARD." Seeing as how I've used two Growths, a Move and a Grip so far, I'm guessing they're a society of Venus Adepts. Naturally, entering the cave I find only a small room with a wind turbine.

I then go back down, use Grip to turn a dial around to match up the pictures, and cross over to the center of the picture, which becomes an elevator taking me to a chamber decorated with the twelve signs of the Zodiac, or rather what they represent. The lion (Leo) and the water jug (Aquarius) are lit up, while the other ten pictures are not. The reason soon becomes evident. There are also twelve doors in this room, each with a picture above them, and only the Lion and Water-Bearer rooms are currently open. I enter the Aquarius room and find enemies; two Dirges and a Faery. I try out some new Psyenergy, such as Coldforge (middle level of Cold Snap, the psyenergy that the Ice Queen Gem taught) and Clay Spire. I soon find myself at a dead end, unable to use Grip to turn the path for some reason, so I move over to Leo's side. It's a straight shot to the back, where a tablet says that only flame can sate the lion's hunger. Tyrell feeds the lion, which starts some gears moving and opens the Gemini door. There was a lion logo in the Aquarius room, too, so I head back there. No change, though, so I head over to Gemini. My cryptic clue is "Each twin seeks the other for comfort." The hell?

edited 4th Dec '10 12:46:13 PM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 19 mmysqueeant, Sat, 4th Dec '10 12:41:53 PM from Essairrrrcks
I'm A Dirty Cowboy
I'm interested in this...but...

could you break up your writing into paragraphs a bit please?

It's hard for me to read this at the moment.

 20 spiritsunami, Sat, 4th Dec '10 12:44:11 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Oh, G-d, one of these. I push one statue, and the other moves as well. It's a mirror puzzle; hence all the random holes in the floor. I push them around until they get to the end. The camera seems to hover over Libra's door, but no new doors are unlocked; I can only assume that this means Aquarius is now traversible. It isn't. I return to Gemini to see if I can get a clue, and get nothing; I return to Leo, and nothing's changed. Insight only says that Grip is needed in Aquarius. Finally, I try Gripping at an angle that I could've sworn I'd tried before, and it actually turns it in the right direction. I fireball the chest out of the lion's mouth, then enter the back of Aquarius and receive the message, "Lift the jug high and receive the bounty of rain." I find it better to give than to receive, so I Douse it, and the statue rises up and dumps out the water into a pool around it, opening both Virgo and Libra. (Maybe Libra had a double trigger? It would make sense, seeing as how it represents Balance.) I then claim the contents of the chest. It's Spiked Armor...um, wasn't that an endgame drop in the first game? It looks a little weaker, but not much. Then again, we have been facing Gryphons, which unmodified were a Crossbone Isle midboss...though I'm guessing it's just weakening old enemies. Tyrell's the obvious choice, which means taking off the Elven Shirt and turning him into a slow-ass...except the Elven Shirt is still stronger than Karis and Amiti's current armor, so I give Amiti the Elven Shirt and Tyrell the Zol Ring. Sure enough, Tyrell's now the quickest in our party. Damn, that Zol Ring is a Game Breaker! What are its actual stats...Agility x1.8. It nearly doubles agility. That is crazy. Time to save and turn off.
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 21 spiritsunami, Sun, 5th Dec '10 6:14:52 AM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Meh. A lot was done during time when I was unable to get to a computer. I solve a bunch more moon logic puzzles and get through, with Sagittarius providing the final puzzle and creating a handle to grip back outside. I get Sveta to join the party, and damn, is she good! And then she leaves, taking most of my best Jupiter Djinn with her. Still, I've got the entire party four Djinn each, which means Rief's back in the active party due to Wish. Also, I've got the letter from Briggs, and will be possibly taking on a quest to save Eoleo.
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 22 spiritsunami, Tue, 7th Dec '10 2:35:54 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
I finally get some more playing done, saving frequently because I could be forced to turn the game off at any moment (playing while waiting for the dentist to see me). I go to Port Rago, solve some puzzles, pick up the Mercury Djinni Coral, and talk to Briggs. He sends me to an elder named Tret (not mentioning the part about Tret being a tree) and also gives me some Hermes Water. Also, Piers's name was mentioned a lot in Port Rago, including by Briggs (who also was able to recognize me due to me apparently having Jenna's eyes.) I then go to Saha—wait, wasn't that where I was delivering that package? (Nope, that was Sana, upon checking this thread.) I find a Jupiter Djinni in the well, but can't get to it yet. I also learn that Kolima has a dream tree, only it's causing nightmares now. I go through a passage in the well to get to Kolima and start investigating. The buildings are, in fact, trees, and on the second floor of the item shop, I find someone who takes me to the Dream Tree. Wait, I'm not finished exploring Kolima yet! I turn off and redo everything I'd done in Kolima. Also, I can't help but shake the feeling that I might be overleveled, as the regular enemies I face seem to be no trouble at all. Kolima also houses the last member of the band needed to play Arangoa Prelude to get Sveta back, but he won't leave until he sees the Mountain Roc. I find the Venus Djinni Garland up in the trees, but his ability actually involves healing, not knocking enemies down. I finally finish exploring the rest of Kolima, but find that the path to Kolima Forest is, in fact, open. So what do I do first? Look for Tret in the forest, or try to save the Dream Tree?
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 23 spiritsunami, Tue, 7th Dec '10 3:00:32 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Saving the Dream Tree involves being fed Dream Leaves and sleeping on the ground outside the tree. When we "wake", we get sucked into a portal at the base of the tree. I'm guessing we're still asleep. A large lizard thing is watching us, and he smashes the ground behind us to trap us. Wait, that Psyenergy looks like it might be what we need to get that Jupiter Djinni in the well! And...it does it again. We manage to create a path back to the entrance by pushing a pillar into the water, then move along, running into a pair of Chimera Mages. I decide to use some of our damaging items on them. They end up surviving. Soon afterward, I get confirmation that I'm not overleveled. Also, the geography inside this tree is not linear. No, wait, it's just that most of the rooms look the same on the map. Useful thing this map, by the way; makes it easier to find hidden doors. I drain the water from a pair of rooms, move some logs so I can get to a chest when I refill it, then drain it again and reposition the logs again to move on. Up to the second floor!
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 24 spiritsunami, Tue, 7th Dec '10 5:12:56 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
Huh. No wonder this damn thing has been running out of batteries so quickly—it turns out that it was the charger that is problematic, not my GBA SP. On another note, why is it that the SP charger is the only one that we can still find? There should be four chargers in this house—the SP Charger (which is compatible with the DS), the one from my original DS, the one from my sister's DS, and the one from my replacement DS. (I lost the original in early 2006, and with it a copy of Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones and Super Mario 64 DS. I replaced the former rather quickly, but never did replace the latter—and despite the game's age, a pre-owned copy still costs $30 at GameStop. Seriously?) I continue on with the DS still hooked up to the charger, so I can watch it and make sure it's charging. On the second floor, I solve an especially tough log-rolling puzzle involving freezing and melting some puddles/ice pillars, and get the Mars Djinni Glare—which means that for the time being, we are once again trailing in Jupiter Djinn. Moving on, I push a pillar off a ledge to the first floor, then drop down a slide to quickly get there myself. I drain the water again, only to find that the pillar in its current location cannot be pushed—which is bad because its current location makes it impossible to get onto, period. It's not even a dead end—it's absolutely nowhere near any platforms. I try again to find a route onward, but all of the grippable stalgmites are out of range.

...

Well, shit. Never would've guessed that one. Casting Insight near the puddle that controls the water drainage reveals two Psyenergy symbols—Arid Heat and Cold Snap. I freeze the water and move along easily, with that pillar I pushed over providing quite useful. As usual: Baka.
Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
 25 spiritsunami, Tue, 7th Dec '10 5:27:51 PM from Right here, Right now
The Sage of Boredom
I grab a Giant Axe and give it to Tyrell. Now's probably as good a time as any to give an overview of what my team's equipment is.

Chad (I put my own name in, remember?)

Weapon: Sword of Dusk

Body: Planet Armor

Arm: Dragon Shield

Head: Warrior's Helm

Feet: Knight's Greave

Karis

Weapon: Assassin Blade

Body: Faery Vest

Arm: Bone Armlet

Head: Prophet's Hat

Feet: Leather Boots

Tyrell

Weapon: Giant Axe

Body: Spiked Armor

Arm: Knight's Shield

Head: Viking Helm

Feet: Leather Boots

Ring: Zol Ring

Rief

Weapon: Grievous Mace

Body: Muni Robe

Arm: War Gloves

Head: Mythril Circlet

Feet: Leather Boots

Amiti (not in active party)

Weapon: Frost Wand

Body: Kimono

Arm: Silver Armlet

Head: Guardian Circlet

Feet: Leather Boots

I'm going to have to remember where the store that actually sold boots was located, because I'm getting a new party member on my next trip to Belinsk...Back on the second floor, I have to melt the top of the ice pillar in order to get by, thawing the water below. I then continue to grip onwards and head back down a new staircase, pushing a pillar into the water to provide a shortcut backward. I then find myself back in the lizard room. I think this dungeon's almost over...

Edit: Also, I hate the formatting of this forum. Doesn't allow for single line breaks.

edited 7th Dec '10 5:29:40 PM by spiritsunami

Q: What Pokémon is good at treating colds? A: Cyn-Day-Quil®
Total posts: 43
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