We don't always like being nonplussed

Friday, February 3, 2012

Ogre Battle Part 2: Warren Peace

Okay, we're back! We've met our hero, FLAIL, and his personal guard of Fighters and a Cleric. So now, we go to meet Warren at his castle for the final test.

It's a nice, simple map. A town, a Roshian Temple... and a few secrets. We're off!

Ogre Battle works like this: there's a bunch of towns, and you have to liberate them, with each map culminating in a boss battle where you liberate the shit out of the local governor and take his castle. You control the movements, construction, equipment, and basic tactics of your units, but never their actual actions in battle. That's determined by their position in the unit (front/back row determines the type and number of attacks, position affects what direct attackers can reach to hit) and their class. While you're doing all this, if you want the good ending- which I have no aspirations of obtaining -you have to watch their Alignment scores and your overall Reputation. Reputation is gained by sending units of a high ALI score to liberate a town. Alignment is gained or lost by killing enemies of higher or lower level than whichever character deals the killing blow. And while you're minding all that, you also have to watch your wallet, as all these soldiers have to be paid.

Sound complicated? Good! It is.

We liberate our first town! Afterwards we're asked if we want to draw a Tarot Card. Since they're insanely useful in battle, I usually say yes. They have effects both positive and negative when drawn as well.

We drew The Moon...

...so it is now night, and much closer to when the units get paid, which is every day at dawn. You draw income from the towns you've liberated, so the more towns you have at sunup the better off you are. Luckily, your hero doesn't draw a salary, so the command unit is pretty cheap.

Now we're going up here, because I've played this before and I know somebody important's waiting for us.

It's the town of Zeltenia, which is a name that shows up a couple times during the Final Fantasy Ivalice games too, all by the same director. (Final Fantasy XII translates it as "Zertinan," but I flailed FFXII in Japanese, and it's the Zeltenian Ruins there.) We pull The Star there, which raises the AGIlity of all members of FLAIL's unit by 1.

More importantly, we get Lanselot Hamilton, former retainer to King Gran Zenobia, who is eager to go out there, find the people who murdered his friend and king, and liberate them right in the face. We now have 2 units! But since deploying Lans costs money, he's going to sit in drydock for the rest of the stage while we take on Warren.

We stop off to liberate the Roshian Temple- where you go to get your people resurrected if you don't feel like paying the exorbitant price for revive items -and get The Fool, for +1 LUcK for the unit! It's also a crucial card for boss fights later on. Also, an item called Euros. Not the currency.

And now, Warren, and our first combat.

There are four tactics you can set for a unit, allowing them to do as much damage as possible, attack the character with the most or least HP, or target the unit leader. Leader's the tactic for stage bosses or preserving ALI. Not that any of this matters much now since Warren's alone. We should be able to take him...

...if my Warriors wouldn't keep MISSING. Usually the victor of a battle is decided by the amount of damage done, and the loser retreats, but with boss battles, it's kill the leader or lose. So we're thrown back... and the day turns over.

Ooh, profitable! Could be worse, then.

And is- he takes out my hero with the Nightmare spell, since he's sickeningly nice and thus very susceptible to Dark spells.

FUCKING HELL. That has never happened to me in all the times I've played Ogre Battle. Of course it happens when people are watching.

So we do the whole Goddamn stage OVER. We don't get whatever the hell Euros was, and different cards, but I do take the long way around and get the two hidden items.

That's more like it! Warren joins us, as does the rest of the Zenobian Resistance. Next, we'll inspect the troops.

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