|Say hi to the ozone layer for me.|
After he got back, he was understandably ticked off and transformed into a Gold Oni and attacked Pochi and I. While Pochi nipped at his heels, I hacked at his soft, golden body with my somewhat harder sword. He was still tough, but I was driven by an undying zeal to see people get their groove on and was eventually victorious. After I returned the drum to them, the townsfolk showed their gratitude by immediately hosting a grand celebration with endless dancing.
|The townsfolk knew that, without a doubt,|
Shen Nung would turn this mutha out.
With a smile on my face and a slight skip in my step, I left Kintaro and continued on my journey. Exploring a nearby network of caves resulted in another animal friend, this time a pheasant with no name. Like Pochi, he can also talk and fight but, unlike Pochi, he has a non-combative skill that allows him to find shiny treasures. With my new friend in tow, we made our way to the remote town of Urashima Town, not backing down from any encounters on the way. In addition to the (not often enough) extra attacks that my pals bring to combat, my latest sword has been fairly consistent in unleashing continuing attacks. Instead of just getting a critical hit like most RPGs, the continuing attack allows for two or three hits in a single attack (regular critical hits are still present but quite rare). When I start such a chain of devastating attacks, my companions cheer me on heartily and I hope one day to be able to achieve a four-hit combo on some poor bastard (hopefully a boss). Quite high off my battle prowess, we strolled into Urashima Town and rescued some old turtle being harassed by an oni boss. As a reward, we were taken to a undersea palace to partake in some dancing, some good eats, and receiving one of the Moon Princess's treasures, the Dragon Pendant Necklace.
|♫ Darling it's better, down where it's wetter,|
take it from meeeee! ♪
With all the good feels that the last two towns had given us, our merry band of three chattered incessantly amongst ourselves as we headed to the nearby Sky Wizard's tower to gain another magic spell. We came across the wizard on the first floor and he informed us that we'd have to defeat him three times in mortal combat. After each defeat, he'd retreat further up his tower, which has a few twists and dead ends. With no random encounters, though, this seemed quite pointless. Oh well, I got the ever-useful town-warp spell from him so the slight inconvenience was worth it.
|Dude, you forgot to stock your|
"dungeon" with monsters.
The next leg of our journey took us north to the snowy Netaro Town, which has a large river running through it's center. The single bridge connecting the two halves was blocked by a large fellow, also named Netaro, sleeping in the middle of it. One of the villagers said that Netaro likes sushi rolls, so I fed him a pile but he slept through it all. Another mentioned something about melting ice over him to wake him up in the past. Of course, I can't just go grab some snow. No, I've got to cross the ice fields, entering the ice tower, and kill the ice witch to get her ice icicle. Now, the ice fields are slippery and I was forewarned to grab myself some snowshoes, which cost me a whopping 3,000 golds. They worked well, however, and I was able to cross with ease. After reaching the other side, I switched back to my old shoes, seeing as they were more conducive to combat. In traditional Nung-manner, I forgot to put them back on when coming back across the ice fields but I wasn't prevented from entering like I expected to be. All that happens is that the directional controls are reversed; I just need to push "backwards" in order to go forward. Well, that certainly was a waste of three large.
|The laughably vast ice sheet that|
protects the elusive ice tower.
The ice bitch was as mean and nasty as one would expect a witch to be. Not only could she deal tremendous amounts of damage, but she could often freeze me for a round or two. It took a few tries but I eventually got lucky with a three-hit continuing attack and dispatched the weeatch. Grabbing the icicle, I left the tower only to have it immediately melt in my hands. Hrmmm. During all my travels, someone had mentioned that people used to carry icicles in drawstring bags but I had no idea where to get one. The only clue I had to go off was a rumour that one of the spell-giving wizards likes sushi (is there anyone in Japan that doesn't like sushi?). Revisiting all the previous wizards and attempting to stuff them with sushi rolls yielded no results. Was there a wizard that I missed? After re-searching the entire land accessible to me, I still came up dry. Thinking that maybe one of the townsfolk was a wizard in disguise or something, I went around to every person I could find, threw sushi at them and inquired:
Unsurprisingly, this also proved fruitless so I spent the next few days just hanging out at the inn and drinking copious amounts of oolong tea. Eventually, it clicked that since I had the maximum amount of items I could carry, I wouldn't be able to hold any more. I would have thought that since I'm giving the sushi roll first, then getting the bag, that that would free up the needed slot. It would have been nice the first time around to get a message saying that I didn't have room instead of giving the standard failure line. But I digress. The very first wizard I met had the drawstring bag I needed and I was soon back into the ice tower to re-kill the (thankfully) respawning witch. After almost of week of dicking around, I was finally able to awaken fat ass with the icicle and make my way to the second part of Netaro Town.
|It shouldn't, considering where I stuck it.|
After reaching the other side of Netaro Town, a thief named Ginji stole my Dragon Pendant Necklace and high-tailed it out of there. So now I was back down to just one of the five treasures I needed. Oh well, at least there was a whole new area to explore. A new area meant a new set of enemy encounters and the trend of strange and weird foes continued.
|Don't you ever touch a Peach Boy's radio!|
|How can you tell this game|
originated in Japan?
Yet another wizard was met although I did not need to beat him up to learn the spell he had to offer. This wizard just asked a long string of pointless yes or no questions where the answer doesn't actually matter.
|I can also count to potato.|
The battery of around thirty questions must not just be done once but twice (to show my endurance for banality). My reward was an upgraded healing spell which was great because I was tired of spamming the weaker version. Now I just need to find that thieving Ginji and get my necklace back. I know he's in disguise in one of these towns but I haven't been able to locate him yet.
|He wouldn't dare disguise himself as|
the Hudson Bee... would he?