We don't always like being nonplussed

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Ogre Battle Part 5: Oh No, We Leveled Up!

Night has fallen in Sharom, and it's quiet. Too quiet. The attacks have ceased, and everyone's resting up for the next part of the conflict. We're going to have to advance soon, and then things will get hairy, as the next town to occupy is very close to the castle, which means a shorter walk for enemies to attack. This will have to be a concentrated effort.

Kamui the Beast Tamer is leaving the Roshfallian Temple unattended in order to hunt down some secrets for me. He finds a hidden item in the middle of the lake, and then heads to the southeastern corner of the map for more treasure-hunting. There's one more secret town to find, but I'm going to have to time that carefully- if I take it before the others advance, the entire might of the enemy army will be brought to bear on Kamui, and gryphons are hardy, but not THAT hardy.

Meanwhile, a Witch and octopus have attacked the shop town.
Witches are extremely dangerous, as they get two shots at stunning the unit, and stunned characters miss a turn. If she's a crack shot with her Stuncloud, we may not get a chance to respond. But, we luck out. The first turn she only stuns the Cleric, who can't do any damage anyway, so we get some good licks in and the back-row Octopus only gets one hit. So we repel her- for now.

Meanwhile, the stream of enemies on the front has been renewed before we were ready to move. We could engage them in a moving battle, but town is much safer, and this early in and since Kamui's still busy, safety's the name of the game. We'll fare better once the sun rises anyway.

See the skull and crossbones? That's the mark of a unit with a dead leader; as I mentioned yesterday, they can only limp back to base and get the Witch rezzed, so the shop town is safe again for a while. Back at the front, Ellis the Valkyrie's unit levels up, so I move her back a touch to give somebody else a turn. Kamui doesn't find the hidden treasure I'm probably misremembering, so we start sneaking him along the bottom of the map to find the hidden town. Hidden towns are an easy find: roads that go nowhere, rectangular empty spaces... they're not all easy to spot, but most of them leave hints at least.

Shortly thereafter everybody has levelled up. There's nothing left for it but to advance before our ALI starts taking hits.

Guess where the hidden town is!

Back at the front, Lanselot takes on an attacking unit. I let one of his Fighters finish a lower-level enemy Fighter... and sure enough the Fighter's ALI drops to 46. Not good. So we get a move on, and change Lans' tactics to "Leader." We'll retreat if we have to- a dead leader means the enemy can't take the town even if we do. Sammy the Knight retreats from a battle to avoid dying and making me spend 2K Goth on a Revive. Did I mention that killing enemies increases Charisma and retreating drops it? Because both of those are true. Samurai Landis' unit takes the lead and levels again. Uh-oh.

Yes, this is a game where leveling up can cause you GREAT CONCERN. Forced to kill weaker opponents, Sammy's Amazons are dropping in ALI, becoming numb to the horrors of war. But we've got to hold this town no matter what, and prepare for Lanselot's arrival.

Kamui's found the hidden town, and before payday too! Now he can proceed to the front, since Beast Tamers don't have a lot to lose from a low ALI. Lanselot takes out a Valkyrie unit leader, levels up AGAIN, and retreats. It's time to face down the boss. He has to face the same Valkyrie a few more times, and she keeps getting resurrected, so he ultimately has no choice but to wipe out the unit. Fortunately, his Wizards do most of the killing- their ALI is just fine being low.

And then he reaches the castle.

This is Uther/Usar the Betrayer, murderer of King Gran Zenobia, Lans' best friend and ruler of the land.

They have words. And the battle is joined.

Uther is a Berzerker, so he's out in front- an easy target. Even so, let's make sure we ace this son of a bitch on the first try.

The Fool has a unique and very useful ability in battle.

It makes all enemies but a unit leader retreat. Awesome for boss fights.

Short, short boss fights.

Victory, and a big pile of money, is ours! I wish we'd been able to let the day roll over and collect even more, but them's the breaks. Ogre Battle's a game of resource management, and among the resources you get to manage are virtue and time.

Next: The Wind Caller.

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