August 07, 2011

Final Fantasy - Two Down. Two To Go.

It turns out that Astos had been in disguise and sent us to retrieve the Crown from the Marsh Cave.  He was tickled pink when we brought it back to him.  Showing his true colours, he quickly engaged us in combat.  Perhaps it was the levels and items we gained while in the Marsh Cave or maybe it was that the Crown didn't have any special powers but Astos didn't last long.  Maybe if, instead of sitting on his ass in an empty castle (oh, sorry, there are bats), he did a push up or three, he would have had a chance.

The party prepares for his pummeling.

After reducing Astos to a grease stain, we got Matoya's Crystal for her and she gave us Herb and then kicked us out.  The Elf Prince was awoken with Herb and gave us the Mystic Key.  I liked how, even though the prince had been laying there for five years, he was still cool with just chillin' on his bed.

Don't want to stretch your legs or something?

Getting this key meant some backtracking to open up doors that were previously inaccessible.  Just a few places, both in towns and dungeons.  If the Mystic Key would have been found later in the game, it would have been more annoying, but Final Fantasy places it at a perfect time in the overall game.  All the areas still have the same monster difficultly, so checking all the places doesn't take much time.  Giving some dwarf the TNT I found in Coneria Castle opened us up to the vast stretches of the ocean.  We could now access any of the islands or continents on the map.  Of course we sail about twenty tiles west and dock in the port that's there.

After a couple more find the MacGuffin quests, we were finally ready to tackle the Element of Earth, Lich.  Finding our way down wasn't a problem.  We do plenty of fleeing and we're carrying 99 Potions of Heal around somehow.  The battle with Lich was a letdown.  I don't think he made to the end of round two.  Now, when I used to play this as a teen my regular M.O. on rpgs was to level grind in an area until I could buy all the weapons, armour, and spells the area had to offer.  I expected most battles to be easy since my party was always so far ahead of the curve.  Playing under these new rules, I was hoping that by avoiding purposely level grinding that the old classics would give the challenge my non-teen mind craves now.  Eh, maybe I'm just exploring too much.

What happened, Lich?  You used to be cool.

Going after the second Element, the fiery Kary, proved to be a little tougher as I ran out of Heal Potions just before reaching her (was exploring on the way) and had to walk all the way back out.  The second assault we went straight for her and she fell as quickly as Lichie did.

What happened, Kary?  You
used to be coo...err.. hot.

After her demise, we catch rumours of a Floater stone being held in an ice cave conveniently nearby.  After missing the chance to screenshot for a "You've found a floater!" joke, we used the stone to raise the sweetest ride the Final Fantasy universe has to offer, the Airship.  No monsters.  Just kickin' back with the wind rushing past and sippin' on a 40 of Heal Potion.  Funk it, as far as I'm concerned, we've already won.

Shen seeing his true love for the first time.