Hi-ho, Hi-ho…

Why do they have a Rogue? There aren't any doors to unlock...

Why do they have a Rogue? There aren't any doors to unlock...


I mean, the Fairy kind of makes sense, as there are a number of damaging-floor areas, and the Dwarf makes sense as this is the only area I’ve seen which uses the special ability to break rocks, much like the Hunter and tracking in the Wood of Ruins. The Warrior works everywhere as almost everything can be melee’d to death, but the Rogue? There are no pickable locks!

Guaranteed weapon?

Guaranteed weapon?


I’m not sure how I managed to miss this every single time I visited the area previously, as it’s mentioned on the map and all, but the chest here is a guaranteed weapon; later on, there’s a chest with a guaranteed piece of armour for whoever opens it, too. They’re both similar to those two chests in the Volcano, but they contain pathetic stuff.

The area's puzzle for the bonus multiplayer treasure

The area's puzzle for the bonus multiplayer treasure


The multiplayer puzzle for this area is interesting; it’s the only one I found that actually depends on some semblance of skill. If you take the glinting item at the end of the pier, it collapses, leaving whoever took it floating across the lake towards a waterfall. The other player has to hop across the rocks in the water so the first player doesn’t get pulled off the raft with the camera, and make it to a switch that lowers a bridge in time for the first player – with the key – to jump to that. Falling in the water loses the key.
I’m not sure what’s in the chest. Unlike the one in the Old Palace, there’s no chance of a single player somehow managing to complete this, as there’s nowhere safe to leap without the bridge, and you can’t reach the rocky outcroppings if you’re on the raft.

This makes less sense than the rest of the floor.

This makes less sense than the rest of the floor.


You’ve heard me rant about this floor before; the one with the bottomless pits. This thing, whilst a nice-looking method of transportation over an inexplicably-deep small body of water, makes no sense as something that would be built in a mine. Where the threat of demons or cave-ins is great enough that they don’t need the risk of drowning on top of it.

Looks like its not just available from the Volcano, after all...

Looks like its not just available from the Volcano, after all...

Incidentally: hey, looks like I hadn’t necessarily visited the Volcano before, anyway.
Not that I got anything from finding it there.

So the baby dragon is still a baby...

So the baby dragon is still a baby...


Odd death animation, though. I can’t remember if any other bosses do the same. I know the Troll erupts in a fountain of blood, and that no other boss does that, to my recollection.
Hum. I wonder if all bosses have unique death animations? I suppose I’ll have to go check, now.

Loot

Water Necklace
Water Necklace [Accessory]
[Int.14, Water.24]
[All]
Wearer is protected by the powers of water.

Minotaur Horn
Minotaur Horn [Accessory]
[Str.32]
[All]
Said to give the bearer great strength.

Resist Cloak
Resist Cloak [Accessory]
[Def.12, MDf.24]
[All]
Cloak that protects against magical attacks.

Pandora's Box
Pandora’s Box [Object]
Brings both hope and despair.
(? ? ?)

Misty Pendant
Misty Pendant [Accessory]
[All]
Mysterious locket with misty swirling surface.

Who knows what the Misty Pendant does; no stats, no defense, no elemental affinity… its description fits, at least. It’s probably one of the ‘protects against [status]’ accessories that never mention what they do. Likewise Pandora’s Box; the description is not illuminating and I don’t really want to open it.
The other items I picked up today were, happily, much more obvious in their usage. Mostly. The Water Necklace naturally boosts your defence against water-element attacks, but also has an unmarked boost to Intelligence, making it a fair pick for magic-users when not going to the Volcano, though you should have better things by this point. The Minotaur Horn provides a hefty boost to Strength, and would be great for anyone planning on melee, whilst the Resist Cloak gives a small boost to Defence, and a larger boost to Magic Defence.

Item of the Day

Earth Tiara
Earth Tiara [Accessory]
[All]
One of a pair of tiaras created long ago.

I said I’d get it.
And it only took… how many reloads? Ten? Twenty? At least four passed-up Robes of the Elder, at any rate. I’m very lucky there’s that savepoint sitting nearby. Almost as if they expected people would want at least one item from that chest.
The Earth Tiara is, like the Misty Pendant and the Pandora’s Box, another of those ‘what on earth does this do?’ items. It has no stats, not even any points towards defence. I stumbled over the use of the thing by accident; it, and presumably the other tiara, the one I never found, provide defence against certain elements. Rather than do this conventionally, through elemental affinities, it just… nullifies a sizeable portion of the damage from certain elements. Get both Tiaras and wear them, and… I don’t know. Might make you invincible to any form of elemental damage. Might clash and do nothing. Who knows.
I consider this one to be the more useful of the pair, as it works on a certain optional boss and it’s the only one I ever tracked down, anyway.

Advertisements

The Troll (Beaten)

Well, that was surprising. When you do 200 damage a hit, the Troll goes down surprisingly quickly.
I don’t have much else to add, though. I’ve already run through the Abandoned Mine before, and there’s nothing different this time, aside from being about 25 levels higher and finally beating the Troll.
Oh, yeah. Once you beat the Troll, the standard exit-portal appears in the middle of the room, in the convenient portal-sized non-dip.

Loot

Silent Box [Object]
Odd music box.
(Casts Silence 10% dest.)

Magical Stone [Object]
Soothes the spirit.
(MP to max. 25% Dest.)

Blessed Ring [Accessory]
[At.8, Df.8, Mat.8, Mdf.8, Holy.4]
[All]
Blessed and engraved with holy symbols.

Queen’s Circlet [Accessory]
[Int.8, Df.4, Mdf.4]
[All]
Beautiful circlet from ancient times.

Magical Stone and Silent Box are destructable items, and very good ones at that. Silence – a Fairy spell – shuts down enemy casters. In places like the Old Palace, where casters are quite numerous, this can be lifesaving. Like Sheep Lute, there’s only a 10% chance this item will be destroyed with each use, so barring bad luck it’ll last a while.
Magical Stone, on the other hand, is half a portable, reusable Elixir. Though MP restores itself so long as you’re not casting, it can be very frustrating and perilous running out of MP in the middle of a boss battle. Magical Stone refills your MP entirely, but destroys itself 25% of the time, so you’re not likely to hold on to this one as long as the Silent Box.

I’m seeing a theme in that last chest before the Troll… Queen’s Circlet is an okay accessory, but there are better things out there… unless it also does something unrelated to stats.
Better things, like the Blessed Ring, perhaps. 8 points to all defence and attack stats, and a slight increase in your Holy attribute, make this a decent accessory for general use, if you know you’re not going to head to a place where being Holy is a weakness.

Item of the Day

Elixir [Object]
Legendary medicine.
(Completely restores MP and HP)

Well, Elixir is certainly well-known, since Final Fantasy use it for the exact same purpose. Sometimes they even wake (or kill) the dead, to boot. You all know this one.
One of these days, I’m going to make a game and put Elixir as the status cure-all, rather than the cure-absolutely-everything-including-wounds. Or have it just restore a middling amount of MP. Other games have done it.

I suspect the Elixir is the reason the ‘Elexier’ in the Palace of the Immortals is how it is. But it’s just as confusing; I never found an Elixir the first time I played through this game, so I always assumed ‘Elexier’ was a typo.

Spell of the Day

Thunderbolt
MP: 45
Command: ∆ O ∆ ∆ O (∆O)
Blasts of lightning attack the foes.

Another of the fifth-level 45MP elemental attack spells, Thunderbolt is the upgraded form of Lightningbolt. As such, it deals much more damage than Lightningbolt, and produces three bolts instead of just the one – two at 40~ degrees, and one straight ahead.
Roughly. Again, Thunderbolt is a spell that’s difficult to predict precisely, though you know generally where the bolts will go. Compared to Lightningbolt, the damage it deals is vaguely sickening; I only cast it four or five times against Troll before it died, and its minions fell apart on the second cast.
As with Explosion, this spell should be cast from the commands, rather than assigned to the casting button; it’s a little more awkward to cast that way than Explosion, but the game sometimes reads the command for Lightningbolt if I mess up Thunderbolt, so… it’s not always a total loss, hm?

The Abandoned Mine (2) – The Ruins Within the Earth

So, what ARE these things supposed to be?


I think that might be a beard…

Heavily-armoured antisocial sword-waving dwarves?

At any rate, back on Underlevel 5…

I never get tired of killing that thing.

So, foolery aside, this is the gate to the further underlevels of the Abandoned Mine. Though the real ‘part two’ of the Abandoned Mine doesn’t really begin until you go down to the next level, as soon as you pass through the gate, you’ll be facing stronger enemies than demonic centipedes, or whatever it is about to jump me in that picture.

Underlevel 6 is more or less a repeat of the action back on Underlevel 4; travelling between disconnected floating rocky paths via magic hovering platforms. There are at least three chests distributed around the area, too, including another chance at a Luck Talisman.
There doesn’t seem to be much in the way of random monsters here; most of the enemies I encountered were guaranteed, already-there ‘spawns’, so they’re going to be there, whether you like it or not. The upshot is that it’s safe for you to wait between fights, if you’re having problems.

So, whilst the 6th underlevel has water and floating rock paths, and crabs, the 7th has a raised path of ice above a floating path of rock.
And bears. Falling off the ice path – which isn’t slippery, happily – can be troublesome here, as sometimes instead of falling into the abyss, dropping off the ice path will instead deposit you on the lower, rock path, necessitating a walk back to the beginning of the icy route. Icy boulders block portions of the lower route, so you have to switch between the icy and rocky paths to get through. Also, the random spawn is back, so you have to contend with more monsters if you hang around too long.
Pushing a couple of iceblocks around will let you at a chest, if you have the patience for it, but as you also need to do that to access the way to the next area, it’s difficult to miss unless you don’t check past the exit.

I like the second part of the Abandoned Mine, but I really can’t tell what the miners managed to dig into, here. The water is a stretch to accept in the first place, but the ice goes a bit beyond that. The swinging baskets don’t make that much sense, either, though they are a reasonably safe spot to rest on.

If there’s any (non-boss) enemy I hate here, it’s the red ogres; they’re almost entirely immune to Fire, and take low damage from anything else besides. They can deal a lot of (Evil) damage with each attack, and can soak a lot of damage before they go down. Facing these are usually more trouble than they’re worth, and they have a habit of spawning at dead ends from the 8th underlevel onwards.
The other enemies in the area aren’t as bad; blue slimes can do an appreciable amount of damage if four are trying to digest you at the same time, and green wisps can only a little less health than the red ogres, but the bears can’t knock you onto a lower ledge you’ll have to backtrack from, so they’re now just a negligible threat.

Underlevel 9’s path is mostly linear; you do have to switch between different levels of platform, via the somewhat-fun giant springs, but the path you should take to proceed is pretty obvious. All the branches are either very short dead-ends, or lead to treasure and are dead-ends.
You also need to dodge falling icicles at times. They’re smaller than the boulders way back at underlevel 1, so they’re much easier to avoid even if the game doesn’t make it clear where they’re actually falling.

There’s a portal on underlevel 9 that takes you down to the boss zone, ‘The Ruins Within the Earth’. It’s a fair walk to the arena for the boss fight, from where the portal places you, and enemies will spawn on the way there; common spawns include red ogres, green wisps, and the new… green ogres, which have larger axes and a weakness to wind element stuff, but more HP than the red ogres.
Nicely, there’s a chest on the way to the boss. Don’t miss it, as it’s a long walk back. Also, if you turn left, rather than right, on entering the central area, you’ll find a savepoint. I recommend using it.

Fun fact:
This was the boss that lead me to discover the, uh, ‘trick’ under my name (Rebecca) in holypriest’s brilliant Item List at GameFAQs.
You know, the one that blatantly abuses Blaze & Blade’s tendency to let spells, other projectiles, statuses and, most importantly, NATURAL HEALING, continue when a controller removed – or set to Dual Shock mode, too modern for Blaze & Blade to detect – whilst everything else freezes in place.

Yeah, The Troll was one of the worst bosses I fought as an Elf. I got very lucky with a later boss that should have been much worse, somehow managing to pick up the one accessory that nullified most of its attacks.
Enough about that one. For now.

The Troll begins with two green ogres as minions. It has a fairly small arena, fitting in a single screen when the camera is fully zoomed out, and is surrounded by deep water. This is a very hectic fight, as you need to keep an eye on (…and kill) the two green ogre minions, but you really don’t want to get hit by some of the Troll’s attacks, either.

Attacks:

1. Normal attacks from the Troll can deal a lot of damage; he can deal up to 60 points a hit.

2. The Troll can leap forward to attack you, which can stun you for a moderate length of time; usually enough for it or something else to hurt you again. This attack will also knock you back a short distance, and deal a small amount of damage, but both of those are negligible compared to the chance of being stunned.
You can see this one coming, but it’s difficult to get out of range since the Troll moves pretty quickly during it, like most ‘charge’ attacks. Don’t get stunned.

3. The Troll can uppercut you, too; this attack will deal low damage, and throw you back, but I don’t know whether it has the same chance of stunning you as the charge does, as well.

4. The Troll has the usual boss Def./Att. debuff skills, with approximately the same range as the Baby Dragon. These are impossible for me to tell apart, and the effect might just be random anyway, but… getting your defence lowered is very bad, naturally, as it tends to result in hits of 70+ damage.

Many deaths, maaany deaths.
Many-many-one deaths, to be precise. I suspect Troll may be easier for a melee class with better armour, but for a caster it’s pretty bad, and any character should probably bring along a few healing items, just to see you through the minions.
Due to the small size of the arena, and the sheer aggressiveness of the Troll, 90% of the time it’s just not possible to stay out of range and cast from a distance. Any spell that requires you to stay still – anything that takes maintenance, but also anything with a long casting time – is a bad idea. Lightningbolt or anything with wind-element on it would be a good idea, as the green ogres are weak to it, and the Troll isn’t resistant. Spark Bullet isn’t a good idea because even at that short a time spent casting, the Troll is likely to catch up with you, and 15 or so damage isn’t worth it compared to 50 on the Troll and 70 on his minions.
Surprisingly, if you can get the Troll to back off for ten seconds, Magic Ray is good for wiping out the green ogres. With the minions gone, if you need HP or MP, you can run in circles directly away from the Troll; that seems to be just about fast enough to avoid everything the troll does. It’s also usually better to drop off the platform rather than get hit by any of his attacks, as both will give you short-lived invincibility, but falling causes less damage. Just be careful, as it is possible to get stunned whilst jumping off, and stunning persists once you arrive back on the platform.
It’s a little cheap, but once the minions are down, probably the best thing to do as a caster is hang around on the bridge from the entrance and keep the big dumb Troll walking against the edge of the main platform, to the side, and to jump off and away if he works out how to approach you, hopefully geting him caught against the edge of the bridge instead. He tends to beeline straight for your character, so it can give you a much-needed chance to rest.

AUGH. Nine deaths and I still can’t beat it. I’m taking a break for the day.

Item of the Day

Healing Robe
[Df.36, Holy.20]
[Pri,Sor,Fai]
A life-saving robe which heals its wearer.

The description really isn’t kidding; this robe does heal its wearer, and as a result it is life-saving. More times than I can count, it has kept me going in boss fights with only a pair of Healing Pins to go on.
Up to the Troll, anyway. Wearing the Healing Robe restores 1 point of HP each second, approximately, regardless of what you’re doing at the time. Provided you can stay outside your enemy’s reach for long enough, you can survive anything (that doesn’t kill you outright).
Incidentally, Materials do affect armour; the Healing Robe only naturally has 20 points of Holy element to it, yet mine has 3 points of Light and 2 of Earth to it… matching the effect of Materials on my weapon. As soon as I get enough Fate Coins, I’m buying Material Magic for this thing.

Spell of the Day

Blizzard
MP: 16
Command: X ∆ X X
Innumerable ice crystals hail down upon the foes.

A medium range water-element spell that affects a very wide area, but moves slowly, and takes slightly longer to cast than other spells of the same level. Technically piercing. Notable enemies possessing this spell include Dark Elf on your first encounter in Old Palace, and Kraken at the Ruins in the Lake; Kraken’s variant is larger than the one you and the Dark Elf can cast, so watch out for it.
Blizzard is another of the three third-level 16MP elemental attack spells, along with Blaze and Lightning Bolt. I have to say Blizzard is my least favourite of the three; it’s the slowest to cast and start once the animation begins, and seems to be the weakest, dealing the least damage unless used against something with a weakness. However, as it is the slowest-moving spell of the three, it has the highest chance of hitting enemies multiple times with a single casting, and can be especially devastating to water-weak enemies.