Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Tactics Ogre, Part 3 - Curator of Discord


Before continuing, check out Tactics Ogre, Part 1 and Tactics Ogre, Part 2. Things happened involving political intrigue and near-unwinnable fights. Almost all of it took place in the rain, and it's a wonder Denim hasn't caught pneumonia.

Dragons start popping up with high frequency in the last quarter of the game. These things are even more irritating to take down than the golems are.

This lone dragon looked pretty recruitable. It didn't attack my characters and kept to itself while I fought the enemy forces. Unfortunately I didn't have anyone who could recruit a dragon. Besides that, a dragon wouldn't really fit too well into my ninja-oriented plan of attack. Like Goldberg going to ROH.

Here's the newest Dark Knight. His character portrait is... weird-looking.

An integral part of my attack strategy is DUNDUDUDUN, HOB VAN DAM!'s area-effect strengthening dance. I'd often use that before having my Ninja Death Squad charge the enemy.

They don't. ...They Don't.

A shot of a particularly brutal battle, as I'm having more than a little trouble handling dragons.

Everybody Hates Denim

Not sure if I mentioned this side-area already. It expands as you get farther in the game, and the first area is a great spot to level-grind if you find that necessary.

And here's another optional area. This is definitely the biggest one.

It's officially the undead epicenter of the game, and pretty unique-looking.

I win the first battle handily, but that's enough for me. This place goes on and on, from what I understand. I wouldn't be surprised if it had dozens of stages. I guess this is for people who realllllly want more Tactics Ogre after they finish the game, as if New Game Plusing other possible storylines wasn't enough. Personally I can't imagine running through the POTD, given that I barely got through the ten or so stages of the Hanging Gardens with my sanity. But more on that in a bit.

Hobyrim was a pet project for much of the latter half of the game, and it's good to see him get to the point where he's strong enough to run with the Ninja Death Squad.

This is an ideal formation for his strength-buff. Those strangely Space Jockey esque golems don't have a chance.

That's right, the Lune Knights are now Team Bring It. They should have taken our heroes out while they had the chance.

Finally, Denim goes head-to-head with Lans Tartare. This is the battle, right here. Speaking of the Chariot... the ability to turn back time at will in this game is really useful (and saved me during the final battle), but it almost seems like cheating.

Of course, Denim wins, and Lans flees. Here's his sister, frowny as usual. She, of course, joined the NWO somewhere in here. This post is full of wrestling references.

I say the nicest things possible, and she kills herself. That's just great. If you make the right dialogue choices, she'll join you instead, but clearly the dialogue that seems like it'd help isn't what she wanted to hear. You know, I really liked her in the Playstation version of this game when she was cute and non-frowny, but in this version? Eh. Whatever.

Denim is somber at this point.

HOB VAN DAM dishing out strength buff power.

At this point, a lot of new abilities unlock on the skill screen. 10000 points, though? That's pretty excessive, even for immunity to a stat. Given the limited number of skill slots, you wouldn't even be able to make use of many of these. I guess they're here to blow points on in the postgame. The only one that I could see being any use at all, at least with my style of playing, is Stoneproof. The bane of my existence in this game is Petrify, which has caused me to lose more than one battle.

Meanwhile, at Heim Castle, Lans officially tells Brantyn that the Dark Knights are done with him.

Next thing we know, Barbas leads a faction of DKs to turn on Lans. This is like when the NWO split up. Does this mean the new group is DK Wolfpac?

The Lord class. This is an awesome class, but it takes ages to level up. Definitely yet another thing for the postgame, if you're going to roll with it. Me, I've got too much of a backlog to do much more than finish the game.

DK Wolfpac lays down the law to Brantyn. And speaking of...

It's about time we took this guy on. He's formidable, but no match for Team Bring It.

The Hanging Gardens ::thunder rumbles:: comprise the final "dungeon" of the game.

After getting the sword Lombardia (which is useless to me, as Denim isn't a knight), it's on to the grand finale. The game kinda screeches to a halt here, though.

The Hanging Gardens are a cool idea; ruins in the sky. A couple of battles up here would have been rad. Unfortunately, what you get are around ten meaningless battles in a row with random jobbers, adding 3-5 hours to the game at a point where I was just about ready for it to be over.

After a long, painful slog, I reach the end of The Hanging Gardens. Ye Gods.


In any case, I quickly trounce Andoras and their minions, then pin down Barbas and Martym at the Hell Gate. If you've played Ogre Battle, you know this place is bad news.

They're literally the only Dark Knights left. Not even any jobbers. I guess the point of The Endless Garden was to more accurately simulate fighting AN ENTIRE ARMY. Well, it succeeded.

The penultimate battle of the game is rough, considering it's against a mere pair of foes. Both are extremely tough, Denim starts in the middle of the field by himself, and you're only allowed to bring four comrades. It's still nowhere near as stupidly difficult as that Vyce battle was, though.

Team Bring It emerges victorious, barely. As you can see, my team was 60% demolished.

A bunch of arcane stuff starts happening. This can't be good...

BEHOLD! It's the final boss, the Dynast-King. He's all demonic now. Wonder what Catiua would have to say if she were here for this battle.

The final battle is absolutely brutal, and starts with Dorgalua cloning your entire force. Given that my force is a death machine, this is bad news for me.

After scaling back on my overwhelming offensive superiority just to be able to survive my own onslaught, I squeak past the clone army. That's just the first half of the battle, though, and the tough part is being in good enough shape to take on Dorgalua himself.

He has a deadly summon spell that causes huge damage to everyone in a given area, and when he's charged up enough to use it you need to be sure none of your characters are bunched up. That's the key to winning here.

Still, I had a rough time with this, and had to use the Chariot Card a few times.

BOOM! Team Bring It is victorious. In celebration of my victory over the final boss, let's look at some of the hotter tarot cards in this game.

 Oh baby!

I don't know what she's doing, but I've never wanted to be the top of a wheel more in my life.

And on that classy note, the ending.

A new king is crowned. I hope it isn't that insufferable twit Joffrey.

::high-pitched scream occurs::

Nope, it's Denim. What a tweest!

Credits roll, and that's that. Given that my path through the game was full of sad happenings, I'm surprised that the ending isn't awf-

-moments after this post-credits scene, a guy ran in (we'll call him Booth Oswald Sirhan) and SHOT DENIM.

Well, that... was even more sad of an ending than Final Fantasy Tactics'. No one will accuse these games of being cheery, I'll say that.

That's another game in the can. Tune in tomorrow as I revisit a little-known NES shooter reknowned primarily for its strangeness.

Also, any series fans who find this should check out Resistance Line, the most in-depth blog for Tactics Ogre that you'll find anywhere.


  1. When you make crappy choices, you get a crappy ending!

    The Palace of the Dead is a hundred floors, though you can skip around (you can in the Hanging Gardens as well).

    1. I didn't make crappy choices! I made "good guy" choices throughout, and those choices seemed to consistently give me the worst route. Note: Don't be a "good guy" in this game. I should have known something was awry when my goodness got rewarded with that ridiculous Vyce battle.

    2. Mostly referring to you letting Catiua die. You'd have gotten a good ending if she had lived.

  2. Came here for your Flower review, stayed for the Tactics Ogre playthrough. Your commentary is gold!

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