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YMMV / Bastion

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  • Anticlimax Boss: The Ura leader is extremely powerful and hard to kill... in the Stranger's Dream, where you're stuck with normal weapons and weathered 30 waves to get to him, plus he's got Queen Anne and a poison archer for backup. In the game proper, he's a pushover because you've got the insta-kill Battering Ram which murders him in one shot. Even in the Stranger's Dream, though, once you take down the archer, the strategy to kill him is as simple as "block, attack, roll back to keep Anne at a distance, repeat."
  • Awesome Music: Lots of it.
  • Demonic Spiders:
    • Lunkheads, leaping enemies with an armored face that do extreme damage if they hit you. The strategy to beat them is simple enough, getting them to obey a consistent leaping pattern to implement it is not. They're much easier once you get armor-piercing weapons, but a nightmare otherwise.
    • Anklegators, essentially moving spikes that pop up if you walk over them. They're easy enough to dodge at first, but their speed and reaction time increases with damage, and they send you flying if they connect.
    • Stinkeyes, flying bombs which are weak but actively shield themselves from ranged attacks except those that can be fired instantly. While their eyes are closed, only a weapon with a poison/bleed effect can do any real harm. Worse still is the giant sack enemy that spawns them and takes a lot of effort to kill.
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    • The hammer-spinning Gasfellas. They're tougher than all but the biggest gasfellas, have a huge hit radius because they spin, and you can't counter them like other enemies, just block them. They also give you very little time to use melee after they stop spinning.
    • Large Rattletails. Ranged attacks don't work half the time because they burrow underground to chuck rocks at you, they move around constantly when they are above ground to make melee much more difficult than it should be, and they almost always come in packs. The little ones, at least, die in a couple hits.
    • Ura warriors also qualify, since they teleport and move extremely fast. Not only that, they teleport when hit some of the time, which can actually allow them to hit you in the back with no warning. Finally, certain variants get a charge bonus, similar to the Kid when he's charging an attack, except this boosts their defense and attack speed with no downside.
      • Special mention has to go to the poison archers, who as the name suggests shoot poison arrows which drain health and inflict an Interface Screw. They also get the charge bonus, making them even harder to kill. For added annoyance, the Stranger's Dream sends four at once to kill you, plus two more down the line, the last being in the final level while fighting two boss characters.
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    • Everything becomes this with the idols on. Even the Goddamn Bats become murder machines if they can land a hit.
  • Enjoy the Story, Skip the Game: Most of the game's critical attention was focused on its art style, storytelling and narration. The gameplay received a more mixed reception.
  • Ensemble Dark Horse: Rucks. Ask anyone who hasn't played the game but at least knows about it what they know about the game, and they'll probably tell you about the gravelly-voiced Lemony Narrator.
  • Game-Breaker:
    • Werewhiskey, which gives 100% critical hit chance at 33% health. Combine this with Lifewine and Bull Brandy to maximize your survivability and it doesn't matter that you're constantly at critical health, because almost nothing in the game will live long enough for it to matter. This is especially true in the weapon challenges, which become much easier simply by falling off the edge enough to activate Werewhiskey's effect.
    • Using Leechade lets you heal by attacking enemies, but reduces the effectiveness of your Life Tonics...unless you're also using Bastion Bourbon, which lets you heal to full with Life Tonics and cancels out Leechade's detrimental effects. This was eliminated in later releases, however.
    • The Scrap Musket with increased knockback and double tap mods becomes a wonderful tool for knocking any damn thing that isn't rooted to the ground off the nearest ledge. Perfect the art of baiting enemies towards cliff edges and even Lunkheads and Ura soldiers don't stand a chance.
    • The Galleon Mortar. The game places it as the second-to-last weapon, but you are far less likely to blow yourself up with it than you are the Calamity Cannon (even with the increased blast radius upgrade), you can lob the projectiles over the enemies instead of the projectile exploding on the first thing it hits, and with the right upgrades you can fire off shots rather quickly. It does enough damage that most things will die in two hits, usually one hit for a lot of common enemies, and that's without upgrading its damage. It's basically an infinite hand grenade that takes a sec or two to set up. With a little practice, you can run'n'gun and nothing will touch you whatsoever, and if you get good at lobbing the projectiles in just the right way, you can lead enemies so that they get the thing right on their heads while they're chasing you.
  • Goddamn Bats: Squirts and Peckers are swarming weaklings that usually act as distractions for bigger enemies to clobber you. Miniature Rattletails also count. Peckers are far worse because Squirts are easily countered to death, while the bog-standard Peckers aren't (and the charging Peckers have an unusual timing to their counters that takes a bit to get used to, all while they're carving huge chunks out of your health.)
  • Good Bad Bugs: When you arrive after either saving or leaving Zulf, if you decide to do the Stranger's Dream, you will be able to jump and use the Battering Ram to fight.
  • Narm: "She's gonna need a little help with all them Peckers."
  • Nightmare Fuel: The Mushroom Samba sequence in Jawson Bog. Especially the scenes that call back to the opening of the game, as those scenes twist every line in the opening narration into a cruel Ironic Echo.
    Rucks: The dead welcome him with open arms. Kid pops them good. That a Survivor? No ma’am. It’s a lonesome ghost of a Gasfella. What do you say to a Kid who’s seen too much? I’m Zulf of the Ura. Pleased to make your acquaintance.
    Rucks: Kid wakes up... nah, I'm just foolin'. He sees what's left of the Rippling Walls, years of work undone in an instant. He sees what's left of Pyth, the bull. The gods...they're all undone. He sees what's left of his lifelong friend. His friend...he's come undone, too. He sees. What's left. Undone. Undone.
    • When The Kid returns to the Saloon, we even get a moment where Rucks seemingly turns malevolent: "He has the nerve to flash the Shield he stole. He’s a petty thief. The Security’s just going to have to straighten him out."
      • And when the fight ends: "Kid succeeds where the Calamity failed."
      • And if the player chooses to destroy the statue of the bartender: "Would you look at what he did to poor old Rondy the Bartender?"
    • If you fall off into the abyss during this sequence: "Kid can't fall no matter how hard he tries."
    • And if you die: "There is no way out."
    • There's also a dark touch added to the final weapon's upgrade material. Every other weapon's material is described as "Something X", such as "Something Greasy" or "Something Stringy". What's the Calamity Cannon's material? Something Wrong.
  • Self-Imposed Challenge: Activating the idols at the shrine gives your enemies new abilities in exchange for greater rewards. Naturally, there's achievements for playing through certain parts of the game with some or all of them active.
  • That One Boss: Queen Anne, the Anklegator. It starts off easy, but her speed increases as her health goes down, and the finishing hit takes split-second timing to pull off.
  • That One Level: Point Lemaign. Narrow platforms with Lunkheads at every chokepoint, Stinkeyes on the elevator portions, elevator portions that swarm you with enemies (especially the second one, which is flat-out ridiculous), all coming together to make a level that will have you pulling your hair out. And if you came in using idols? Yeah, just kill yourself, because they'll surely do it for you.
  • That One Sidequest: The Proving Grounds vary widely in terms of difficulty. Some, like the Galleon Mortar, you can conceivably pass on your first try. Others are only tricky (Breaker's Bow) or nearly impossible (Fang Repeater) until you get the appropriate upgrades or learn the right trick (War Machete). Then there's the Bullhead Shield trial. There's no upgrade that will help significantly, no trick to make it easier. Just your timing and luck. You'll need plenty of both. However, clever use of Spirits can make some of the more difficult Proving Grounds much easier; notably, the Bullhead Shield trial can be made easier using Lunkhead Liqueur (to return more damage when blocking with the shield), and any trials where dealing damage is an integral key to success (such as the Fang Repeater or Dueling Pistol trials) can be beaten more easily by equipping Werewhiskey and purposefully dropping to less than 33% health.


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