Saturday, March 1, 2014

Romancing SaGa III #11 - The Greatest Show

HARID... in Everquest Paladin form! The desert hound is equally noble in three dimensions.

Next stop, the Rotten Sea Ruins. Oddly enough, this is also how Native Americans refer to the nether-regions of TV pundit Ann Coulter.

"BWORGH" says the Green Dragon Ruler. That's right, time for yet another rematch. THIS TIME, though, I brought reinforcements. THIS TIME... I brought crabs. Er, a crab. And he is fearsome.

Undine administers QuickTime, which turns out to be an extremely useful spell. Causes everyone to go first every turn, rather than at random times. No more heals landing too late to save someone. Fixes the primary thing I hate about the turn-based system. Downsides? It takes ALL of her MP, and there's no way to restore it within a fight.

It's still a blisteringly tough battle, and after my entire party gets annihilated aside from Harid, he launches one final attack...

...and BY GOD it's over. I was literally one hit away from losing. Moments like this are why I like RPGs. As for the dragon, it was worse than either of the two Abyss Lords that I've fought. Not sure why, but it's the strongest of the dragons.

Journeying on, our heroes are interrupted by "The Greatest Show" by Insane Clown Posse.

Our heroes may be busy saving the world, but they certainly have time for The Greatest Show. Tickets start at 10 G.

Most people don't like these Oddities!

This isn't The Greatest Show at all! I was deceived!

Later that night, our heroes sneak into the tent to see what the deal is. Turns out, it's a captive fairy that the nefarious proprietors were showing off.

"Kooloo-LOOMPAH!" says the fairy as we set him free to prance about the meadows.

And then we're suddenly ambushed by the Soul Sucker. This is a boss fight, but it's clearly one I was supposed to do much earlier in the game... because Harid wins in one slash. The tables have turned, and I'm no longer too underpowered to win anything. ...I'm too overpowered for everything except endgame foes, so any regular bosses I stumble upon now will be trivial. This makes me long for more linear game progression.

Freeing the fairy is important for getting to the Fire Gate later, so this isn't without a point. But first, I have another gate to get to...

Here's Julian. Remember him? He wants to join, but at this point I don't really have any room for anyone new unless they're super-useful. And somehow I doubt he'll be anything more than another generic blank-slate character like Ellen.

Here's another blast from the past, Mikhail. He doesn't offer to join. His path seems completely different from the rest of the cast in that he has a kingdom to rule rather than roam around. I wonder if the game really is different if you play as him. Regardless, I needed to talk to him before the game allowed me to pass through the mist room. Now that he's spoken to, suddenly the room will lead somewhere.

Next, I climb this particularly cool-looking red mountain to find Gwaine, a dragon who can help us take down Byunei the Wind Abyss Lord. It's either that or fight Byunei with just my party, at a disadvantage. This is the kind of nonlinearity I like, a clearly-defined choice. I go with Gwaine since it'll be much easier.

Here is the noble and wise Gwaine.

Our heroes hop onto his back and we TAKE FLIGHT. Awesome.

...and run smack into Byunei. No dungeon? Doesn't look like it. Check out these great monster sprites. It's quintessential mid-90's Square.

This is a two-on-one fight, with Gwaine and Harid on the right and Byunei on the left. Harid and Gwaine do a combined 6000 damage a round with their dual techs, so I think I made the right choice.

Maybe there would have been a dungeon had I hoofed it here with the party and skipped Gwaine.

Harid drops a leaping sky-slash on Byunei!

Byunei has a great name. I wonder if he/she is like a Pokemon, and only says his/her name when it attacks.


And we have a winner. That was the easiest Abyss Lord, thanks to the assist from Gwaine.

Harid seals the gate... WITH HIS BLOOD. That's three out of four, almost done.

At this point I return to the mist room and check out Byunei's dungeon. I would have indeed had to fight through here had I skipped Gwaine.

Here's the one reason to go here regardless. I'm not sure, but I think this is the strongest attack spell in the game. It takes three people to cast, and I haven't quite figured out how it works yet.

Tune in for the final episodes of this series in the near future. In the meantime, be sure to leave a comment below.


  1. Julian and Mikhail take you back to the time when this game had a plot!

    1. Something about the devil king child being born every 10,000 years and a solar eclipse that kills all life on the planet.

      Peter Venkman: "Everyone getting all of this?"

  2. Really liking your commentary. Thanks for showing me a game I didn't know existed until now!

  3. Gwaine is The Man. It's awesome to have a game where you fight a dragon while riding another dragon.