Hey everyone, I bet I know the question that’s on your mind; what the heck is Paladin’s Quest? Well, Paladin’s Quest is a JRPG that was released on the SNES in 1993, one that I’ve come back to time and time again. The game has a distinctive aesthetic and an interesting story, but at the same time it is held back by an obviously lackluster translation that was all too common to games of that era. I am not a translator myself, but I do have access to some resources that will at least help us deal with some of the more odd naming localizations that Paladin’s Quest gave us. Speaking of odd localization choices, that title. As the thread gives away, the game was called Lennus: Memories of an Ancient Machine which fit because the game takes place on the planet Lennus and the plot centers around an ancient mysterious machine and figuring out how to stop it. Paladin’s Quest is decidedly less fitting as you are not playing a Paladin of any sort.
This is the main screen of the game. Very bare bones and it does not do a good job of preparing you for what you are going to see. If you click on the Demo option, you will have this!
And when this text box appears, you will also hear this!
Just listen to that. That is the regular overworld battle theme. It is awesome.
With that music playing, I definitely believe this is the kind of place where warriors cut dinosaurs heads off with ridiculously huge swords.
Note that while the opening refers to the town as Leyord, the rest of the game will call it Reiyold and we will yield to the majority. If the still image does not make it clear, the buildings are wavering as though we are looking through heat waves. The text explains that half the town died and the narration wonders if the town was betrayed by the immortals or if this was the anger of Lennus. Immortals, as you might guess, is supposed to be Gods but this is was 1993 and Breath of Fire II hadn’t happened yet so we’re not going to be seeing any mention of the word God in reference to clearly deific figures.
The text goes on to say that another event is about to threaten all of Lennus, vaguely implying a connection to half a town being destroyed for mysterious reasons, but that connection will require some work on our part to put together.
I included both screenshots here because this is something that happens a lot in the game; very very awkward sentence construction and use of space in the text box that can make it more difficult to understand what the game is trying to get across. Outside of this instance, I will not show this sort of thing off again.
Being a classic era JRPG, our big bad is of course, a powerful foreign dictator. On a personal note, I for the longest time misread Saskuot as Saskout and I don’t know what to do with that. The narration says his name is Zaygos and he’s going to do what no one has ever attempted in the history of Lennus.
Also at this point, the game now plays a different track to convey the ominous danger that Zaygos presents to the world.
We are shown a preview of the battle screens, which are first person as per Dragon Quest tradition, and Zaygos killing some guys with his powerful magic and thus bringing all of Saskuot under his control with barely any effort.
During this stretch, the following theme plays.
The people of Naskuot are just living their lives, unaware that despotic dictator wants to go two for two on the major land masses of the planet Lennus.
We know return back to the location of the great spiritualist Daicant, this time focusing on this tower here. The text box is obscuring it, but the tower is being supported by a point at an angle, really driving home just how fantastical and alien this tower is, even against everything else we’ve seen so far. The narration informs us that there is evil in this school as well.
Now the music starts, and we hear a steady sound not unlike a heart beat. It is very dark, but we can see some sort of strange machine. Possibly the titular machine, but only titular back in Japan.
That complete’s the Demo for the game. Next time, we’ll start getting into the main game and I hope I’ve done a good job stirring up interest.
I always liked how much this felt Moebius-inspired, and how it resists all the soft-shaded, blended colors the SNES could produce; it feels like it should be a Turbo-Grafx-16 game, but on the SNES, it makes it feel more mysterious.
I never went deep enough to learn if there’s an interesting mood to the story (I think tone is a more realistic expectation of an RPG of this era than characterization or theme (and all the better for it)); how does it feel distinctive to you?
@Daphaknee, glad to hear to hear that you are interested in seeing more updates! I will do my best to provide!
@BustedAstromech, its hard for me to put into words what I find so distinctive about this game, not without some serious spoilers about what is going to happen down the line. I will get more into those things as they come up in the let’s play.
@wourme, cool, awesome to see another fan of the game! I was not expecting that, so I neglected to put down a spoiler policy for the thread. clears throat. Please do not spoil anything that I have not already covered. This goes for everyone of course.
With all that being said, let’s start the LP proper!
When we start up a new game, we are first asked if we want to change the hero’s name. I’m not going to do that because my boy Chezni has such a good fantasy name that I would not take that from him.
Note that this is way before Harry Potter came out, so if the writers of the game were inspired by anything, they were probably inspired by Wizard of Earthsea more than anything else. Or some other story involving magic schools, there were plenty of those even before Harry Potter. The narration box goes on to say that when the potential for magic was found in Chezni, he was sent to the Magic School, which checks out.
We will be keeping a tally of how many wondrous misadventures transpire in the course of this game. I will take bets on what the final total will be!
As we fade in to this screen, a sound like a bell plays, the kind you would hear in school signalling the end of the period. For this area, this is our theme.
Very pleasant and peaceful and homey. I think I’d be content if I were hearing this in my hometown.
Less pleasant is our classmates surrounding us as soon as the teacher is gone.
The classmate on the bottom doesn’t think that we should get a big head just because of our talent at magic.
The student to our right wants us to really prove ourselves, and not on our homework.
The student on the top cuts to the chase; he dares us to climb the Tower of Gabnid and come back with the treasure that supposedly lies within. And to make sure that we do it, he wants us to go with Duke, the kid on our left.
Duke’s name would have been more accurately localized as Dukas, but this is far from the worst example of that sort of thing we’ll be seeing in this game.
Here we are given our first choice in the game and anyone familiar with JRPGs of the time will immediately recognize that this is a “but thou must” moment. If we say yes…
He tells us to make sure that WE are there and then runs off ahead of us. But if we say no…
Turns out the little guy is very pushy about things if he doesn’t get his way. Then he runs off and we are left to move around on our own. We will use this opportunity to talk to everyone we can, starting with our classmates who have successfully dared us.
The female classmate tells us why Gabnid is such a big deal; he brought magic to Lennus so without him, no magic school.
The student above us remarks on the oddity of us asking for information that we should really already know, before saying that while there are lots and lots of legends about Gabnid, he lived over 10,000 years ago so there’s no knowing the truth about them.
The third student clarifies that Gabnid had built the Tower of Gabnid and it was not, say, erected by his followers in his honor or something like that.
Upon leaving the room, we can go left or right. By going right, we find a storage room and in that storage room are two items for us to pick up.
Truncation on item names was common for this era of localized JRPGs, but it is really bad in this game and the total lack of any item descriptions means it can be very hard to figure out what you have. Fortunately, if you purchased a copy back in the day, it came with a poster that would have all kinds of information on all the items and spells and monsters and everything. Mind, this also means there are some late game spoilers on that poster as well, so there’s a bit of give and take on that. Fortunately, I can tell what each thing is as we obtain it so you don’t have to hunt down the poster.
The “Home Dor” is a Home Door, or in the original Door to the Road Home. By using it on the world map, we can instantly warp back to the last town that we were in. The Learn H on the other hand, is a Learning Hat, a piece of equipment for us. Sadly it does not have any special properties to increase experience or magic or the like, but better armor is still better armor.
Here is our main menu. It is more than a little clunky, and the truncation here can make it unclear what certain commands do. EQP is Equip, which manages not only what your characters have equipped, but also managing your inventory. STR is strength, which we can use to see our characters attributes, their equipment, and their magic development. Rank is for determining the order the characters are in the party, which affects how likely you are to be targeted in battle. I think, I’ve never actually confirmed this. MGC is magic and lets you do two things; reorganize magic in the battle menu, and use certain spells outside of battle. And when I say certain spells, I mean 6. The vast majority of spells are going to be used in battle. EXIT is for removing optional characters from the party to make room for more. Finally, SYS is System and lets us adjust stuff like text speed and what buttons do which command.
With all that out of the way, let’s go ahead and put on that Learning Hat! We go to Equip, select the equip option again, pick Chezni, and now we get this.
Right now we have nothing equipped on our head and a defense of 24. By putting the cursor onto the Learning Hat…
We gain three points of defense. We want our defense to be as high as possible, because protecting our HP is absolutely vital in this game.
After that we leave the storage room and go left to another room on the same floor. This room has more people we can talk to to get information on the world that we are in. The students in this class will inform us about the geography of Lennus (There is a land hemisphere and a sea hemisphere, the northern continent is Naskuot, the southern is Saskuot, and we are in Naskuot), the races of of Lennus (There are ten in total, five in Naskuot and five in Saskuot, relations between the north and south are bad, there used to be more races on Lennus, and the guy who tells us this is a Guud who lives next door in Ratsurk. They are big and hairy and have big horns too.), that there is some secret locked away in the Tower of Gabnid and the entrance was sealed accordingly, and that there is a storage room on the right that has some nice stuff for us to take.
After that we go down the stairs to the first floor and I realize that I had forgotten to show off the status screen.
Everyone, meet Chezni. Every character gets a portrait and a line of text that serves to give us an idea of what kind of character they are meant to be. In the case of Chezni, he wants to be the very best like no one ever was, and being 13 means that he’s definitely the sort of kid who would rise to the bait of a dare that puts his ambitions in question. Note also that he is of the Lafury race, which judging from his portrait means he’s the closest thing to a normal human in this world.
If we click on Ability…
We get to see all of our equipment and all of our stats. SP by the way stands for Speed, another very extremely important stat that we want to be as high as possible. Power and Luck are both nice, but not nearly so important. If we go back and click on Magic…
We see our spirits and how much we’ve developed each of them. Right now we only have fire, and it is so undeveloped that you can only just barely see the little bar for it. By clicking on our only spell, FireS, we get this.
Each spell has a short description like this, but there will be plenty of spell descriptions that will be vague, unclear, or just plain misleading. Also, in the original game, FireS was called Zuzan. All the spells from Lennus were like that, so I don’t envy the translators trying to change them into something more immediately understandable to American gamers. Even if the truncation does mean that a lot of the time they’re still really unclear.
Moving from that, the first room on the first floor has this guy here.
And indeed, if we talk to the Master, he will tell us that he is busy and has business in the neighboring town of Ratsurk. After that we go into the second room on the first floor and we can talk to the people in there.
He will explain to us that we need to read the Spirit Writings to gain new spirits that will grant us new spells.
I included all of this guy’s dialogue because I enjoy how aggressive he is about making sure we understand what a stupid country rube we are for thinking that MP is a thing. But yeah, no MP, all magic is cast using HP. Which of course means there is no magic for restoring HP, so we’ve got to manage our healing items very carefully.
But that will be for another update, because this ended up going longer than I expected. Next time, we’ll explore more of the surrounding environs of the magic school, meet up with Duke, and see just what is hidden away inside the Tower of Gabnid.
I played this as a kid and me and my friend got stuck on the puzzle in the black-and-white past where you need to stealth past a floating eye that moves twice as fast as you do. Literally spent hours on that puzzle, then gave up on the game forever. Looking it up more recently there doesn’t seem to be any particularly obscure trick to it, but I guess as 9-year-olds we weren’t the greatest at logic.
More recently I tried playing it again and couldn’t handle the amount of grinding the game expects of you, and gave up very early. Like many games from the era it would benefit from an “easytype” patch so I can enjoy all the art in a reasonable time, like Sega Ages Phantasy Star.
Casting spells out of HP is definitely the weirdest system in this game. It’s the only RPG I know of that did that for everything, and not just for a few types of dark magic. It adds to the alienness of the world that you’re vampiring off your own health all the time (I forget if there is any lore about how creepy that is).
Yeah, that puzzle is an absolute nightmare. Though when I was a kid, I actually reached my point where I couldn’t progress any further a fair bit before that.
Interesting that you bring up the grinding; I’m going to be attempting to do as little grinding as possible in this run. I know I’m going to have to do some grinding, but it should never be more than a level or two at a time. I’m sure I’m going to need a little luck here and there, and I know I’ve gotten lucky already, but I think that makes things more fun.
As I recall, there is no lore about anyone finding the HP for magic to be creepy.
Also, one last note, I forgot to provide a source for the name translations that I provided in the last post. Here is my source so that credit is given where it is due.
Now, last we left off, we were just about to leave the school building and talk to more people.
Relax Duke; going into the forbidden tower is a Wondrous Misadventure and we’re all about that!
She explains all about the boarding house and how they will even refill our medicine bottle for us. We’ll be getting into that more later, but for right now you have limited healing charges when you go out into the field. In addition, she calls us very brave but even brave people have accidents and she likes us so she doesn’t want us to be hurt before we become a great Spiritualist. Its always nice to have someone concerned about you like that, makes me feel wanted.
This is the boarding house, which is functionally an Inn for free that also restores our medicine bottles. The person on the left handles inn while the person on the right handles saving our game. For authenticity’s sake, I’ll be saving and not using save states.
If we say no…
And if we say yes…
All in all, the magic school is treating us pretty well. Granted, Chezni is an honor student, and they do tend to be treated better, even when they’re breaking the rules and stuff.
This guy thinks the ability to set stuff on fire with the power of your mind is boring so we can safely ignore everything he has to say.
This poor little kid just wants to go back to his mother back in Jurayn and wants us to speak to the headmaster on his behalf. We’ll get to that as soon as we can.
This guy goes on about how this beautiful girl named Midia is over in Ratsurk but she doesn’t come to the magic school and he accuses the headmaster of hogging her to himself. But what I want to draw attention to is this.
I feel entirely safe in saying that this line has been mistranslated to mean the exact opposite of what it should be. Anyway, this guy speculates about having a shot with Midia, but I think we can safely say he won’t have that chance.
Well, this guy is the one jerk in the Magic School. Sure, he’s just doing his job, but still man. Jerk move.
In any event, that’s everyone in the magic school that we can talk to, so now we need to go meet up with Duke; sadly we can’t enter the tower without him, so…
If we say no…
If we say yes…
When someone joins the party like this, it plays a little tune not too unlike what happens in Dragon Quest games.
Now let’s take a look at Duke.
Duke is one of the Saynol people, and his quote lines up with his pushy attitude so far. Still, he looks like a good kid. You’ll also notice that despite being one level higher than us, he has lower HP. If we take a look at the ability screen…
Contrasting against our boy Chezni, his base power is slightly higher but his club is inferior to our knife so he’s only barely better on attack than Chezni. His speed is one point higher, as are his Endurance and Luck. All in all, he’s only slightly stronger than us and that’s with a level advantage. Once we close that difference, we’ll be much stronger than him all around. Now for magic.
Unlike Chezni, he has the Sky spirit in place of the Fire Spirit, which gives him the BreakS spell, or Leran in the original Lennus. If we click on that spell, it helpfully informs us that it “Tears apart one enemy”. With that out of the way, we now enter the tower that is now unlocked with Duke in tow.
Doesn’t look too different from the school building so far, but the music has now changed to the dungeon theme, signifying that we are not where we belong.
And sure enough, it isn’t long before we get into our first random encounter of the game!
I apologize for the darkness, but the battle screen is only brightly lit for a moment at the start to display the name of the monsters you’re fighting (in this case, a Pakrat which the goof-off kid wanted to go hunting) and then it gets dark so you can see the battle menu. Nice thing about this battle menu is that you can do everything with just the D-pad. Very handy for getting through battles quickly and efficiently. Usually.
If we select the weapon option, we get our choice to use any piece of equipment that we have on us. Some of our equipment have special effects in battle, and this is also where we get to use the Mini Bottle that we have equipped. We can also use the Mini Bottle out of the main menu in the field, but we’ll wait until we’re actually wounded before showing that off.
In any event, we are not going to be attacking with any of our weapons. After all, we’re a magic prodigy, so we’re going to set this rat on fire with our mind!
As you might imagine, the more spells we obtain throughout the game, the more cluttered this screen is going to get. I therefore recommend regularly reorganizing your spells so that the ones you’ll be using most often will be available to you more quickly.
After choosing our actions in battle, we get this screen.
You’ll note that I’m having Duke defend. Right now we want to focus on having Chezni use his magic in every fight. See, in order to improve our magic, we need to use our magic. Its like Final Fantasy II, only much better implemented. In any event, this screen is very handy for double checking and making sure that you’ve made the choices you want to in battle. We have, so now we see what happens!
That is the FireS spell in action. Notice that Chezni’s HP has gone down 12 points; this is not because the Packrat attacked us (his attack animation involves shaking his head at us) but rather is the HP cost for casting FireS. By casting FireS, we do 20 points of fire damage to our enemy and kill him in one shot. For comparison, our Knife would only do 4-6 points of damage, and the Packrat can easily do 14 damage to us. So really, paying that 12 HP for our spell works out much better for us. We earn a small bit of experience and money and continue on our way.
A couple floors up, and suddenly the Tower of Gabnid changes by a lot. Very mysterious sci-fi stuff going on here. Makes me wonder just how magical our magic really is. Oh, and that object down in the lower left?
That is a treasure chest. Sadly, when you’re done with them they close back up as though you never touched them, which can make keeping track of whether or not you’ve opened a chest more frustrating than it should be. That won’t be an issue for this chest, but as dungeons get longer and more involved, it can be a problem.
After opening the chest, we take the elevator up, and find ourselves in yet another new area.
In addition, the music changes again.
The longer I spend in this place, the more I feel like this is a bad idea. Still, Chezni has no problem burning all the monsters to death in an instant. We ultimately end up in three encounters, including one against a Heliopod which I did not screencap here. I’ve had a rather bad habit of just playing through the battles and not screencapping as often as I should, so hopefully I’ll improve on that front.
After just three battles, we’ve already had visible progress on our Fire spirit, but we’ve got a long way to go before it is at full power. I should also note that in addition to our Fire rating increasing the damage of our fire spell, it will also increase our resistance to fire magic used by the enemies. This means that leveling up our magic improves both our offense and our defense at the same time. Another reason to always use your magic in every fight. This will save so much grinding time.
Our journey up the tower ends here, with some manner of control panel and some sort of machine attached to it.
While this is clearly not a door, the translators of the time were likely given less than zero context on what the player would be looking at. In that light, its a wonder any translation for games from this era came out coherently at all.
Naturally, the game can’t progress unless we say yes, so we do. There’s a lot of sparking and lights and flashing then then everything comes on.
Something then spooks Duke.
He runs off and leaves us all alone.
A darkness then oozes down the screen and we are brought onto the battle screen. There are flashes of light outlining something very big and scary looking, and then the darkness returns and we can barely see that it is there at all.
We use our trusty FireS spell that has killed everything in one-shot so far and…
One point of damage is not going to kill this thing. It lets us act on our own for a few rounds, then it opens its eyes, we are drawn down to its open mouth, and…
It breathes an explosion at us.
For over 3000 points of damage. And it has very evil eyes.
Welp. Chezni just died, so I think that’s a pretty good point to close out on the post. I guess that Midia girl is just going to have to pick up our slack or something.
We now get a bit of first person narration for the first and only time in the game. Also, Chezni survived an explosion to the face so I guess he’s a lot tougher than his level 1 stats have led us to believe. On top of all that, this theme is playing.
And then we switch right back to third person so I don’t know what’s going on anymore.
Well, we’re back outside the tower now. And no, we can’t go back up to the control panel again; the elevator no longer works.
Also, the rest of the school has been utterly destroyed and now the master is standing in our way. I do not see this going well for us.
It does not go well at all; it turns out everyone but us died when we activated the machine in Gabnid’s Tower. He tells us that we have unleashed Dal Gren and now the ancient machine will lead Lennus to total destruction. Also, the master can’t help us, we have to fix this mess that we caused by ourselves. As far as masters of magic go, you are not one of the better ones. You couldn’t just tap my forehead and give me endgame magic or something?
After talking to him he’ll step aside to let us by, but if we talk to him again…
He just tells us to get moving and find some way to stop the machine.
So we step outside, and are greeted by the title screen.
During this time a short bit of music plays and then stops, waiting for us to continue.
All in all, unleashing a giant hell beast that killed everyone we knew and being tasked with having to find a way to stop it is neither wondrous nor is it a misadventure. Thus, the Wondrous Misadventure tally remains at zero.
One thing I do want to not before going on was that I hadn’t appreciated talking to all the different NPCs at the magic school in my previous playthroughs, especially the ones outside the main building itself. They each come off as their own distinct person that you would find in your typical schoolyard story and taking the time to get to know them helps make their deaths a little more impactful.
We now find ourselves on the overworld map, and the theme of Naskuout starts playing.
Despite the weight of what we’ve done and what’s happened, the overworld theme is cheery and adventurous. It encourages us to keep going and explore the world. The soundtrack has been doing a lot of work for this game, and it will keep doing that as we continue on.
Now then, first thing we’re going to do is enter the neighboring town of Ratsurk. Hopefully the locals will be able to help point us on our way.
That section of ground beneath us is not glitched out; just beneath the surface there is vast and elaborate machinery. Odds are this is connected to that thing we activated in the Tower of Gabnid. Also, the same oppressive music from when we first woke up is playing again. This theme is our cue that something is wrong in town and we’ll have to fix it.
If we go into the building on the right…
He then goes on to say that the rope got cut last night, so we’re not going to be using this anytime soon. If we talk to the guy on the left, he’ll have this to say.
I’m sure Chezni wishes he could do just that, but that’s not the kind of game we’re playing.
Off to our right is the inn, in front of us is the item shop, and just above that is the weapon and armor store. If we go into the inn, there will be someone with something to say.
It would not surprise me if Chezni had been unconscious for a good long while before waking up from his explosion wounds. He goes on to tell us about a treasure chest on the eastern shore but now that the monsters are acting up he’s too scared to go after it. The game really wants us to know that there are treasure chests on the overworld map, and I like that. It helps reward exploration. Not that this chest will require any exploring, but it sets the right precedent.
This guy explains our medicine bottles in more detail; our Minibottle can hold 9 charges of medicine, each of which will heal for 300 points of damage. At this point that is a full heal, and each charge of medicine costs only 5 gold to refill. He urges us to not worry about overusing our medicine, and I will demonstrate that he is right.
Every item shop in the game carries the same stock; the Fl Dor is the Flight Door, or Door of Light in Lennus. Using it will let us exit a dungeon instantly. We will not be using that, because we want to fight our way back out of the dungeons to save on the grinding. The Pro Ball is a Protection Ball, or Ball of Warding; it reduces our encounter rate against weak enemies, and we will not be using those for the same reason. Still, if you are in a bad spot and you’re worried about not making it back to town before dying, you can use them.
After leaving the shop, we start talking to people around town.
If we answer no…
If we answer yes…
All in all, I don’t think this guy appreciates the severity of our situation.
This guy on the other hand sounds like he does appreciate the severity of our situation. Let us hope he doesn’t find out our role in it.
We go into the house nearest to the Rope Network Station and talk to the person inside.
This person asks if we want to hear their story, and if we say no they just call us cold. But if we say yes, then they tell us.
They go on to say that Fritz is a bit strange but he’s a good guy, and then they just say his name with their voice trailing off. I have a feeling that we’re going to be meeting this Fritz person and finding out just what’s so strange about him.
If that giant super monster was the one that kidnapped Midia…yeah, let’s hope that’s not what happened, because we’re not close to ready for that.
Over to the right is the bar, and we’re going to talk to some people in there.
This guy explains more about how using magic will improve your ability with the elements you use for your spells, and that by combining your different elemental spirits you get new spells.
The barkeep does not care for the minor. Understandable.
This guy and the guy on the lower left do not care for us either. Which is a shame, I’m pretty sure we could use some muscle.
This guy explains that we can’t change the equipment on any mercenaries that we recruit to help us out. This means that as the game goes on, earlier mercenaries become less viable since their equipment will no longer keep pace like it should.
And this guy explains that we can hire mercenaries in bars to help us out. Not in this bar, but future bars.
Over in the weapon and armor shop, we can choose to buy, sell, or walk away just like in the item shop.
Since I’m not using my Home Door, I’ll be selling it for 50 G, which will save me considerable time on grinding for cash. The chest on the eastern coast has another 50 G, so that means we’ll be able to afford everything that we need without having to get into any unnecessary fights. Nifty.
This building here is the magic store. We’re going to go in and get some magic.
Sp here stands for Sphere. And yes, that is an accurate translation; sometimes the weirdness of the game is just baked right in! I don’t remember to go over the new spells we’ve gained until a little later, so you’ll have to wait on that. The other guy is exactly the same and you can’t buy the same spirit twice. In later shops they will each sell a different spirit which works to give you second chances to gain a new spirit in case you missed one earlier.
Back outside, we talk to this guy.
If we answer no, he calls us pathetic for not having magic despite looking like a student of the magic school. If we answer yes, he says the Elder is looking for a hero too rescue Midia and we should go talk to him about that. And we will. Eventually.
In a different house, we can talk to someone who has some backstory for us.
This person explains how the whole village came together to raise Midia and all sorts of miraculous things happened and so she became the “protectoress” of the village. Now she’s been kidnapped and they are very sad.
We go into another house and talk to someone else for more new backstory.
Apparently something really terrible happened here 10,000 years ago and now its happening again and the whole planet is doomed this time. Really makes one wonder about the Tower of Gabnid and by extension Gabnid himself. Then again, who knows, 10,000 years is more than enough time for all sense of history to be lost in myth and legend.
Back outside, more people to talk to.
How odd could the livestock possibly be acting?
Hmm, they seem perfectly normal to me. I think that guy is just a little stressed.
Finally, we go to the Elder’s house.
He seems to be able to tell we’re a spiritualist just by looking at us, and the fact that we’ve got message is good enough for him. That’s something I like about this game; our ability to do magic is something that stands out to people and makes them want to ask for our help.
If we say no to his request to save his daughter Midia, he’ll say he misjudged us and call himself a poor judge of character. To progress, we’re going to say yes and he’ll tell us that people saw Midia being taken to Resutar Island to the southeast. The same island where Fritz is supposed to be.
Over to the right is another member of the household.
And up the stairs is one more person to talk to.
With that, we have spoken to everyone in town. But the update is not quite done yet. First, I now remember to actually show the new magic that we’ve obtained.
FireG, or Zuzomun, targets a group of enemies with Fire damage. It does less damage than FireS and costs more HP, but it is very worth it. Freeze, or Momulock, also targets a group of enemies and can paralyze the enemies. This can work on some early bosses, so if you take some time to grind up your Sphere spirit, you can make those fights incredibly easy. That said, since I will be avoiding grinding, I won’t be exploiting that. But if you ever wanted to make a boss sit there useless and futile, this is your chance.
All that being said, we will now be using FireG in every battle from now on to raise both our Fire spirits and Sphere spirits at the same time. Using just Fire or Sphere will not level those spirits up faster, and casting multiple times in the same battle does not increase the rate you level up either. So once I’ve cast FireG, I will be free to attack with my weapons. And speaking of which, I go to grab that chest with the 50 G, go back into Ratsurk, and return to the weapon and armor store.
I buy the Wooden Shield and the Wooden Boots, which together raise my defense by 14 points and my speed by 1. There is leather armor that you can get to replace your uniform, but I don’t think its worth getting the money for that small an upgrade. If we play our cards right, this 14 defense increase will keep us alive and happy.
Next time, we go to Resutar Island and see about rescuing Midia and making up for at least a little of our planetary scale screw up.
We head south from Ratsurk and on the way we find a statue. If we examine the statue, we get this.
It says that Sophie brought love to Lennus, Kormu brought courage to Lennus, and Gabnid brought wisdom to Lennus, and so the peoples of Lennus praise them and the immortals of Raiga. We’ve got a bit of a legend of zelda thing going on here.
Going down from there we enter Resutar island and to our left we see a treasure chest.
This is the Antidote Bottle, or Clear Bottle back in Lennus. We use this to cure poison, and what a coincidence, this island introduces the first enemies able to inflict poison! Poison does nothing in battle, but it will drain your health when walking around in the overworld, so this bottle comes in handy.
Like right here! As you can see, the first fight (which again I did not screencap because I am still figuring this whole let’s play process out) on the island very nearly killed me. Coming here at level 1 is incredibly dangerous and I would not begrudge you if you were to grind a level or two before coming down. No more than that though, each level will make you meaningfully stronger and as long as you keep using your magic your damage will rise more than quickly enough.
After healing and curing our poison, we go and check how our stats are. Compared to what we were at with level 1, we’ve gained 5 power, 4 speed, 2 Endurance, and 4 Luck. We also gained 26 HP. A pretty good level, though I would have liked endurance more than power, but the speed is the really important one.
We continue winding through the island, making sure to heal whenever our HP gets low, and then we enter a house on the island. Note that if you are right outside the door and are still injured, save the charge on your minibottle.
We could talk to the man right there, but there’s an item we can grab first.
The dagger is a two point increase in our attack power and while we are mostly using our magic, every little bit helps.
Now we go talk to the man and see what he knows.
This is Fritz it turns out. We explain to him about Midia’s kidnapping and he’s so impressed by our heroic gumption that it makes him feel better and want to help us.
Then he offers to get us something to eat before we go.
Uh, game? I uh, I think Chezni would have liked to have gotten to the table for that food. Despite that, our health is fully restored and that’s what really matters.
There are some explosions and these guys come in. Fritz’s response to them breaking and entering into his house?
That is understated, but the person back at Ratsurk did tell us that Fritz was odd so maybe this was what they meant.
We’ve entered into battle and we’ve learned something right away; Fritz can’t use magic. So instead, we will be using one of his weapons to attack.
He’s got a hat, boots, bow, leather armor, and a minibottle. The bow you may note takes up both hand slots, which is why I did not go for it back at the weapon and armor shop.
Our FireG here is doing 21 damage to all the Goblins, and Fritz’s bow does about 30 or so damage and is able to finish one off. Next round we attack with our weapons and win.
Chezni is like “Yep, it was definitely totally the goblins who only attacked with their horns, and not me, the guy who keeps setting things on fire with my mind. Absolutely.”
We run outside and the fire spreads to this line of trees and nowhere else. Man, it would be nice if forest fires were that polite.
Now that the trees are gone, we can move on. But before we move on we use Fritz’s bottle to heal Chezni and then we take a look at his status screen.
His sprite does not do him justice. He’s got a distinct look, and is apparently a Lubott. He’s also 35 years old and level 7, so definitely much more experienced than we are.
As expected, his stats are much, much higher than Chezni’s in every regard. His power and Speed are especially good, making him invaluable for taking out individual enemies in a hurry. With his higher defense and HP, we’re keeping him up front to absorb as many hits as we can manage.
Along the way to the cave, Chezni gets poisoned, so we heal that up and then go inside.
Immediately to our left is a treasure chest with a Home Door. Useful for if you’re in a hurry and just want to be on your way after we get done with the dungeon here.
In here we have an encounter featuring the Helioreds, a palette swap of the Heliopods back around Ratsurk. Palette swaps are always kind of annoying when they show up this early in the game, especially since I can never spell palette correctly the first time around. The important thing about the Helioreds is that they are the ones who can inflict poison on you. Also, we now have the underground fighting music in this place.
After that fight, Chezni gained a level.
3 Power, 6 Speed, 3 Endurance, and 4 luck. I don’t keep as much track of HP gains, since its always a value between 24-26, so the variations there aren’t nearly as significant. You can decide to save scum with savestates to try and get the best levels you can get, but I’m not doing that. Your average stat gain will be more than sufficient to carry you through the game.
100 gold is very nice for this point in the game, as that will save us a lot of grinding for cash later on.
The Constrics, contrary to what the name might suggest, do not paralyze you or anything like that. They instead have an attack that drains your health to heal themselves. It makes area attacks that don’t kill them in one hit a little unreliable, but I still feel this is the right way to go.
This is what it looks like when they drain our health.
Combined with our Home Door, we can use these to get out of the dungeon and back home right away if we so choose.
Fritz has managed to gain level, giving him 4 power, 5 speed, 3 endurance, and 3 luck. This will be much appreciated in just a moment.
Looks like we’ve caught up with Midia’s abductor. We talk to him, see if we can get him to let her go without having to fight.
Looks like we’re going to have to fight.
This is Alornso, or the Alorn Soldier in Lennus, and he can either attack with that big sword, or flap those wings on his hips to do a magic attack on our entire party. Said attack does 54 damage to Fritz and Chezni, while his sword does 30 or so. Chezni can try the Freeze spell to paralyze him, but without a lot of grinding its not likely to work. If it does, you are very fortunate and should take advantage of that by setting him on fire with the power of your mind. Fritz will either attack with his bow or use his healing bottle to keep himself and Chezni above 54 hit points which is death. The fight will take a while but is completely manageable.
And with the rocking boss music, the fight is more than just manageable, its fun!
And so with his dying breath, he name drops Zaygos. Which means that he had kidnapped Midia under his orders. Why would Zaygos want Midia? Well, we’ll have to dig into that later. Right now we have to meet up with her and see how she’s holding up.
But not before checking out our new stats after leveling up in that fight. 6 Power, 4 Speed, 3 Endurance, and 5 luck. As soon as we can get a good strong weapon, we can really take advantage of all that power growth. But for now, our dinky dagger will have to do. And our fire magic. Lots of fire magic.
This purple haired girl must be Midia. Let’s talk to her and find out for sure.
Yeah, this place is a rather crummy place, let’s ditch it. With that, Midia joins our party and we can see just what her capabilities are.
First, let us appreciate that Midia’s portrait art is very cute. Judging from that quote, she has become rather devoted to Chezni in very short order. We can only hope that Chezni will be a proper gentleman. Maybe Fritz can teach Chezni a thing or two?
Compared to Chezni, she has significantly lower HP and Endurance, slightly lower Power, but her speed is way higher. She is also equipped with a Paralysis Knife, which has a chance of paralyzing any enemy she hits with it, which goes very well with the higher speed and lower power. Now let’s check out her magic.
Her Earth spirit is incredibly high, but sadly we don’t really have the ability to properly take advantage of that just yet; AntiPS or Dadeth removes poison, while HealUp or Dadeketh removes all status conditions depending on how high her Earth and Light spirits are. Not that you’d figure that out from the ingame description, which just reads “Restore”. BoltS or Kekan does lightning damage to one enemy. For right now, all we are going to do with Midia is have her cast HealUp in every battle so that both her Earth and Light spirits increase, and then if there are still enemies left she can use BoltS, which does hit pretty hard.
And speaking of magic, let’s take a look at how Chezni’s magic is coming along.
We’ve made headway in Fire and Sphere, but we’ve got a long way to go. Good thing we’ve got plenty of game left to do it in.
Next time, we’ll bring Midia back home and see how this wondrous adventure closes out. Sorry, not a misadventure, not enough wacky hijinks or misunderstandings, so the Wondrous Misadventure Counter will stay at zero.