Wednesday, April 17, 2013

TEXT PLAY: Lufia and the Fortress of Doom (Taito, SNES 1993): Issue #04: Ship Out

I could really use a little game time right about now, and getting this ship is just the thing for it.
When we left off last time, we'd met a guy called Augro, who was the commander of the Lorbinean Army, who had come to the town of Treck to see what the deal was with all the delayed shipping that was going on between the two city-states. When Augro's ship is sunk by monsters who attack the harbor, Augro joins up with Lufia and the hero to retrieve a merchant ship that the monsters had stolen and taken to an island north of town.

There are a few good items to be found in the cave that connects the island to the mainland. Of these, probably the best is the Daze Ring, an accessory that at the very least increases the defense of whoever wears it. As the game progresses, we'll find other such items that also affect the strength of spells or improve attack against certain kinds of monsters, though I'm not sure if this one in particular is one of those.

Another important feature of this cave is that it's the first one in the game that features a room with healing tiles in the floor. There's one that restores MP and another that restores HP. In this case, the room was a bit out of the way with regards to getting through the cave to the ship, but it did serve handy for a bit of level grinding that helped me get through the battle on the island, because everyone gained a level.

Of course, another deciding factor was that I'd stocked up on battle items to use against the Goblins that had stolen the merchant ship. The Arrows, which give one low-level attack against a group of monsters, and the Mid-Arrow, which are a stronger attack against a single monster were the most useful of these.

With that in mind, I should mention something about the battles in this game that I think I might have left out before. All the enemies in a party of monsters are grouped, which is to say that if you run into a party of, say, three Kobolds and two slimes, for example, the three Kobolds will all be one group to attack, and the slimes will be another group. However, if the party is set up so that one slime is on one end of the formation and the other slime is on the other end, they're separate groups, which has a way of causing characters to miss if all the monsters in one group get killed and they were targeting that group. It's very much like some of the later Dragon Warrior games I played, back when I was still playing RPGs on the NES. Here's playlist I made of HCBailly's Dragon Warrior 3 LP a couple years ago to demonstrate the principle.

Anyway, once we get the ship back to Treck, the captain is so glad he offers us free passage between Treck and Lorbenia for life. I don't think we'll ever need it again after we go the first time, but it's been quite some time since I've played very far into this game, so I don't remember.

Once we get to Lorbenia, Augro goes off to try to talk his army into going up against the Sinestrals. As a matter of plot convenience, Lufia wants to go shopping at the dress shop since it was so hyped thus far in the game. We don't get any dresses out of it, but we do meet a little boy named Lou Shaia, who's the son of a guy called Professor Railey Shaia. All we hear about the father is that he's pretty much a traveling version of Doctor Insano, who goes around doing SCIENCE! and stuff, and decided to leave his boy at home because it was dangerous. We'll meet the professor eventually, but we've got like half or two thirds of the game to go before we actually get to that.

After Lufia and the hero spend the night at the inn, Augro shows back up and says that the Lorbenian army has decided to puss out of the battle for the world, just like the Alekian Army did, so it's up to our new green-haired friend to do the right thing and come with us.

From here, our next destination is Grenoble, which is indeed the name of a real city in France. It's kind of why I wanted to make that Saturday Night Live reference the first time I mentioned it. For as culturally influential as classic SNL was, at least here in the US, I'm surprised that clips aren't easier to find on YouTube.

But anyway, since we're headed off to Grenoble next time, we'll see you next time when we go to A Small Town In France.

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