Tuesday, January 10, 2012

TEXT PLAY: Final Fantasy 4 (SNES, 1991): Issue #16: JMShearer Opens Caves And Shit

I probably should have put a name from the party in the title, but I'm not sure how well the reference to Jory Caron's fan mail show would have worked if I had.

Plus, this cave is more like a sadistic version of Pee-Wee's Play House than anything, and I'm not sure how to make a title out of that without attracting a slightly different kind of audience.

But seriously, this cave is a real pain in the ass. There's one level that has an entire wall of doors that don't go anywhere, which would be bad enough if every single door in this dungeon weren't booby trapped. No, really, every door here is booby trapped and will literally attack the party when they try to use them. But I'm still going to open them all, just for completion's sake, because I usually try to get as much as I can anyway.

I don't usually open all the Trap Doors in the game because half or two thirds of them just go to little empty rooms. Maybe those rooms had things in them in the Japanese “hard mode” version of the game, but footage of that is kind of hard to come by, from what I understand. The rest just go to potions of one sort or another and weapons and armor that we've already got the next upgrade for.

Beyond that, the only things really of note about the Trap Doors is that they have a one-hit kill called Disrupt, which they use after doing something called “search” so that we can tell who's going to get hit by it, which means that having lots of Life potions is almost a must; and that if their HP gets critically low, they turn into some other kind of monster, with full HP for whatever that monster is. Most often, almost exclusively in this run, that other monster was a Manticore. The one I decided to wait to do until my way out turned into a Yellow Dragon, and I do believe another possibility is Green Dragons.

But it seems that booby trapping all but two of the doors in the place with monsters wasn't enough security for whoever sealed the cave. Plus, this is a video game, so we can't have a critical moment without a boss fight involved at some point. Remember the trash compactor scene in Star Wars: A New Hope? We're going to have to fight a possessed version of one of the crusher walls. It's not a hard fight if the party is capable of hitting the wall hard and fast. Otherwise, it'll crush everybody and/or turn them into stone. But really, it's not so hard if you've saved all the throwing weapons you've gotten for Edge by this point and have the Virus spell for Rydia and decent weapons for everybody else.

Unfortunately, it's a hike back out, but the regular monsters in the cave are, by and large, no big deal. But there's a reason we can't just use an exit spell to get out. Kain's still being controlled by Golbez a little bit, and he jacks the crystal from Cecil when they get to the cave's main entrance. So Kain's out for the time being, but he'll be back before we know it.

The next step is to go to the Dwarf Castle, where King Giott tells the party to go to Mysidia. Turns out the Elder there is trying to wish a giant, space-faring airship back to life. This ship is called the Big Whale, not that it really matters. There's a free inn and a Fat Chocobo aboard this new ship. We'll need those things because we'll be going to the moon in a bit. Cid puts a big drill on the Falcon so we can dig out of the underground at Agart.

But once we've done that, we're going to hold off on going to Mysidia for a tad. We've got a few more side quest items to deal with first, in Side Questing Across the Underground, part two. Stay tuned!

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