May 09, 2013

Dragon Quest IV - Alena on Me


One would think that it would be tough to top the sheer awesomeness of having a mofo like Healie along for the adventure.  On one hand, that is totally correct as Alena's companions are akin to unshaven balls (so far).  On the other hand, Alena has access to the casino where a metal babble shield can be won, amongst other prizes.  But I'm getting a little ahead of myself here.  Princess Alena of Santeem Castle is a tomboy who desires freedom, excitement, and the chance to prove her strength and bravery.  The king forbids her to leave the castle so she does what any rebuked protagonist would do — kick a section out of her bedroom wall and plummet to sweet, sweet freedom.

♪ Can I kick it?... Yes you CAN! ♫

As she makes her way onto the world map, Alena discovers she's not as sneaky as she thought.  Two of her mentors, Cristo the chancellor and Brey the wizard catch up with her and lend their help instead of just dragging her back to the castle.  Despite their lofty titles, neither of them are packing much in the magic department and in melee they are teh sux as well.  Well, at least they soak up some damage, which is pretty much all you lousy meatsacks are good for anyway.

Okay, but I'm only allowing it because Cristo
comes with the Heal spell, which reminds me
of Healie, even though I've never met him.

So the big deal about Alena's quest is that she's a girl doing this decidedly manly endeavour, even though she's far tougher than Brie and Crisco combined.  A good number of NPCs can't resist rubbing this in her face every chance they get.

Hmm... you're a soldier, yet I'm about
to cave your motherfucking face in.

Alena's first big task is to help out the small village of Tempe.  An evil Bad has ordered the town to bring him virginal young femmes every so often or he'll destroy the town.  Instead of going to the king (you know, the dude who is obligated to protect his vassals and serfs), the townsfolk just sit there in despair until Alena womans up and offers to kick some pedo ass.

Alena's actually more upset at his, like, omg,
totally terrible fashion sense and stuff.

The people of Tempe as so impressed by Alena's badassness that they suggest that she go to the city of Endor to destroy a hilariously undefended shield generator.  Or wait.  Maybe it was to enter the largest and most prestigious tournament in all the lands.  Yeah, definitely the latter.  On her way to Endor, Alena and the gang stop off in the small village of Frenor where — wouldn't you know it? — another crazy adventure happens.  It seems the princess has graced the tiny hamlet with her presence and... wait a gosh-darned moment... why, Alena is the princess!  Uh-oh, I smell some Three's Company-esque hijinks about to go down.  Just as Alena approaches the fake princess and her entourage, whu-whu-WHUT?!, the phony princess is captured by a band of scalawags!  Team Alena assembles and gives chase but are quickly outpaced by the rapscallions.

Dammit, Brey, come on!  Pump those
100-year old legs!  DO IT PUSSY!

Of course, the kidnappers get away.  The only solution, and I mean ONLY solution, is to delve into a nearby cave and get the Golden MacGuffin that is the kidnapper's ransom.  Bursting with confidence, Alena and gang quickly clear the dungeon and get said item.  Alena meets the 'nappers at midnight at the old graveyard and make the exchange.  The phony princess is glad to be free and gives Alena a key item and then starts off to join her companions.

What?  You'll join your... Oh!... oh, I'm so
sorry you didn't realize that impersonating the
princess is an offense punishable by death.

Enroute to Endor once again, the crew takes a detour to check out a desert bazaar which may just have some nice items to purchase.  Unfortunately, the trek is starting to take its toll on Brey, who has decided to die every couple of fights.

Don't act like you don't know by now!

With Cristo keeping his healing hands on Brey the whole time, they all finally manage to check out the bazaar.  True to the rumours, there is some very nice pieces of equipment and Alena and Cristo get first pick for obvious reasons.  As one would expect from a market held in a desert, it is very spacious and most of the merchants take advantage of that fact.  I say most because of one clown who has completely encased himself in tables and merchandise.  It's so bad that he's still there during the chilly desert night.

I don't know if he's dead or just
sleeping, but either way, I lol'ed.

Whilst browsing the bazaar's many wares, Alena is approached by a guard from Santeem who informs her that she must return to the castle immediately as her father is in trouble.  With a simple toss of a Wing of Wyvern, Alena is warped back to Santeem Castle.  Rushing through the castle courtyard, tears begin to form in her eyes as her imagination runs wild with what could have possibly befallen her beloved father.  Poison?  Disease?  Some kind of curse or hex?

Just a hoarse throat?  Christ, get 'em
some Buckley's™ and be done with it.

Of course, it's not just as easy as popping down to the chemists and getting a package of lozenges.  Nope, gotta get the non-mass-produced Birdsong Nectar which is, yep, in a nearby tower.  After soothing her father's irritated throat, Alena learns of the king's terrifying and recurring dreams about monsters from the Evil World entering this world and destroying it.  Alena just rolls her eyes at the senile old bastard but because of those dreams, the king gives her his blessing to "travel the world and see what's happening".  Alena instead goes to Endor, like she originally planned before her pappy interrupted her with his puerile bullisht, to take in the tournament.  She gets there a couple of days before the tournament starts, however, and decides to take a full tour of all that Endor has to offer.  And by that, of course, I mean spending an ungodly amount of time in the casino pursuing the dream of owning a Metal Babble Shield.

Gulp... er, maybe she'll settle for a
handful of Wizard's Blings instead.

There are three different types of games to be played, which will be detailed in the next posting.  I'm fairly certain that this chapter ends after the tournament but it is a mystery as to how long Alena will spend in the casino.  She's caught the gambling bug big time and Brey and Cristo are total enablers.  During her first ten minutes at the casino, she managed to triple her initial investment and started having the audacious thought that she just might be able to get that blasted shield in the end.

♫ I'm going to make it after AAALLLLL! ♪