Monday, October 19, 2020

Trials of Mana, Part 9 - Sorceress

Chase the moon.

Our next objective is to take out all of the God-Beasts, which can be fought in any order. I usually start with the Water beast. Going for something a bit different this time and going through them "backwards" from the SoM order. Dryad's zone is first up.

This place is interesting because the game basically turns into a side-scroller for a bit here.

This dungeon is full of sexy bees. It's noteworthy because it might be the most "Mana-like" dungeon in the game.

The side-scrolling later involves some fun platforming as you leap from shroom to rock platform and back.


...damn, I already used the "AH, JESUS" up. Here's Mispolm, the God-Beast of Wood.

Well, they're called "Benevodons" now because you can't say "God-Beast". Riesz continues to dominate the thumbnails. I have to say, this fight was the hardest of the eight 'Beasts on my first playthrough of Trials of Mana, and was the last one I fought. Now, fighting him first, he's the easiest. These things really do scale up as you defeat more of them, so it might be wise to fight Wood and Moon first. They're the ones you're least likely to have a weakness-attack for.

Speaking of Moon, here's Chartmoon Tower. It has a bit of a resemblance to the Fanatic's Tower from Final Fantasy VI.

The tower looms.

This is a much better dungeon than it was in the original SD3. It's got a lot of floors and a lot of enemies (that commonly drop ??? Seeds, getting some of that out of the way if you aren't already at third-tier classes).

The werewolves in question are accompanied by vampires, which feels like something that'd happen in the original Final Fantasy Adventure.

At the top is the massive God-Beast of Moon, Dolan.

This is a fierce battle. His AOEs are punishing, especially for a low-level group, and he doesn't really have weaknesses.

The battlefield being so large also makes it difficult to counter his super-attacks once they start to "assume formation".

Check out Angela in front of the moon there. If it didn't have the number it'd make for a hell of a shot. Let's see what I can do.

There we go, going to go back in time and put this at the top of the post. Annnd, done. Though you've already seen that, as the future is your past. So is this, actually. Damn.

The Shimmering Ruins are the home of the God-Beast of Light, and they're a sprawling, badass temple in this version.

Didn't get any real shots of the dungeon for how lengthy it was, but here's Lightgazer. This fight can either be super drawn-out or easy, depending on how much Dark-element damage you have access to.

Not only does Lightgazer look like a Zelda boss, it's also worth noting that he has a gigantic Kamehameha wave.

Here's the fight. It's a thing that happened.

I find another Lil' Cactus lurking in some snow. This diabolical fiend is EVERYWHERE.

Annnnd another. It's time to wrap up the Lil' Cactus hunt.

Here's the final Lil' Cactus that I found. This is probably the easiest one to miss in the entire game. He's on the other side of Stonesplit Gap, the place we couldn't cross before. There's no reason to ever hoof it back here during the normal game unless you're exploring, since you take cannon travel to the other side before. It's sorta like in Dragon Quest 2 when you can go back into the north tower and find the Dew Yarn. You don't have to, and might never even think about it.

That's all 50 Lil' Cactus sightings. Getting them all rewards you with some insanely good stuff, like an ability that gives the entire party two special attack charges at the beginning of any given fight. This makes it far easier to spam special attacks, like Kevin's completely overpowered AOEs.

Next up, the Fire God-Beast is located in that volcanic area from earlier. This is another good place to grind ??? Seeds if you still need them, as Captain Ducks commonly drop them.

Xan Bie is the God-Beast of Fire, and he's...odd. What is he? A bird head?

Most of this fight consists of taking out these machines that generate AOEs.

Xan Bie himself pulls a Valvalis and goes full tornado. Not only Valvalis, but also...

...he channels the Son of Sun from Chrono Trigger and summons a circle of fire spirits.

This fight is a snap with strong ice attacks...and a snap in general. One of the easier God-Beast fights.

Gusthall is our next stop. The room where we had our initial class change is now home to...

...Dangaard, the Wind God-Beast and my favorite easily. It's the closest to the Mana Beast of the original game.

This fight is tremendous, between the music and the overall look. They realized the music to its full effect here.

Unfortunately, it isn't that difficult of a fight. This is one fight that could have gone on for ages and it wouldn't have been a problem. Here's a clip of my fight from a previous playthrough, as you can see Hawkeye dishing out punishment.

Next up on my "work backwards" run of the elements is Earth. The Earth dungeon is full of Babbles.

This area is really cool, with crystals and stones and so forth. It also has poison-element enemies, because poison is sorta rolled into earth in this game. That makes a lot of sense. Usually poison is its own element in games.

Here's Giga Gaia's universal twin, Land Umber. I'm still convinced that both Giga Gaia and this guy were extensions of the original plan for SoM's missing Earth Gigas fight, which they didn't have the memory to pull off in that game.

We know SoM had around 40% of its boss fights cut, going off of developer comments and orb placement in the later parts of the game. We don't really know what most of them were, but it's pretty safe to say the Earth Gigas was one of them.

This remake's version of Giga Gaia is another big, bombastic, fun fight.

Question is...when do we get a Chrono Trigger remake?

Here's the fight. I'm not trying to have Riesz dominate the thumbnails.

Next up: Ice dungeon. Every one of these God-Beast dungeons has a ??? Seed in a chest, as well as enemies that drop them after you've defeated at least two 'Beasts.

Also worth noting: Every God-Beast dungeon also has an elemental resistance ring that halves damage from the boss. Getting all eight of these is important, and luckily most are hard to miss. After the three playthroughs of the game that are necessary to see all of the final bosses, you should have a full set of 3 rings for every elemental occasion. Though by then your characters will be so OP that you won't need 'em anymore.

Here's Fiegmund, a giant lizard from hell.

He's like the Super Shredder version of a Sahagin.

Here's the fight. Normally I fight this guy first, so he's a bit stronger than usual being last.

With all of the seven available God-Beasts defeated, the search for the 8th begins. Its location changes depending on who you're playing as. Each pair of characters has a different final area(s) and the Dark God-Beast sets up shop near the beginning of them.

Still not sure what's up with Ancient City Pedda, or why you're able to make the past version of it appear by taking a nap. Are your characters going back in time? No, because the rest of the world is still normal. It's just this one area where you're stepping into the past. No doubt a little bit of Chrono Trigger that got on its twin.

This is a very cool-looking area, and the last town that can be used as a home base. It goes right into the final areas.

Hawkeye's hipster ancestor tells us that the Darkstone is in the Jungle of Visions. Much like Thanos, we're off to get the last stone we need right out of its forehead.

This jungle is where you'll find ??? Seeds in abundance if you somehow still need them. Obviously in the latest playthrough of SD3, this was the ONLY place where I was able to get them. This area only comes into play for Kevin and Charlotte. For example, Duran or Angela will go to the Crystal Desert instead.

Dryad shows up with her weird creepy hip-sways. Get outta here, Dryad!

Green Rabites are the latest and strongest version of the deadly Rabite family.

Here's Angela unleashing Dark Force, which looks just like Magus' Dark Bomb in this version. It's easily my favorite attack spell in this remake.

This Black Rabite statue warps you to fight the game's postgame uberboss, the Black Rabite. Unlike the original version, any party can fight him (not just ones led by Duran/Angela). This statue appears in every final dungeon. Said boss is stronger than anything else in the game, even the new postgame boss, and got a significant upgrade from the original SD3. We'll get to that, though.

Speaking of Duran, popping over to one of my other files we can see the coolest thing about Duran: His swords are very distinct from one another, and some of them look awesome. He's probably my least-favorite character to play as overall, since he's a bit slower and clunkier than the other fighters and lacks magic attacks. However, as the only two-handed sword user, he has the best-looking weapons.

I'd like him more if he was the only selectable character, in his own game. I could see the main character of a Final Fantasy Adventure remake controlling just like Duran here.

Hot on the heels of finding the last Lil' Cactus, I find my 200th treasure chest in one playthrough to knock off another trophy. This might well be the most difficult trophy to get, since the game only has around 250 chests and you need to get over 200 in one single run.

1 comment:

  1. Woods of Wandara might be my favorite place in the game, though that's a pretty hotly contested category.

    I went for so many ??? during this part of the game.

    Poison and earth being together can also be seen in Scarmiglione in FF4.

    When you sparkle that much the thumbnails come to you.

    I don't remember if I got that treasure trophy, but I'd like to think I was thorough enough to get over 4/5th of the chests in the game.