The big problem with my letting this thing go so long between issues is that I tend to forget things. Like when NPCs tell me where the next town is. I had to go to VGMaps and look it up, and once I did, I remembered that somebody from last time told me that Marse was right up the coast of the same continent as Bakku and Linze. Which is not to say that I did not benefit from the mistake. I could probably use an extra level or two for my characters, and most of them got one while I was diddling around in what must be the Fargo Islands
And it brings up one of those things that I'll probably spend years and years meaning to write something about, too, in that a lot of the other RPGs like this that I've played have had world maps of some sort to consult in the game, especially starting around the time that games like, say, Breath of Fire, Final Fantasy 4, and this one came out. Of note, the last two on that list don't actually have in-game maps. It's just that I never really felt like I needed one for FF4.
But anyway, the game at hand. After finally getting to Marse, it's time to find Brandt and his girlfriend. We know we're in the right place when we get to the shrine and find Brandt's girlfriend there, saying she's all worried about the guy, because their wedding is coming up in the next couple days and he's still at a place called Loire Island. Maybe Laguna's family is from there?
Turns out, though, it's not just that Brandt's liable to be late for his own wedding because of his research. There's also pirates hiding out at Loire Island, according to one of the many pleasure-cruise ship captains hanging out at the port in Marse. The inference we're supposed to make here is that the pirates have our buddy Brandt and we're going to have to rescue him and get him to his wedding in order to get his help in gathering the Alumina and fixing our ship.
Naturally, knowing me, I'd go and end this issue the same way I started it, by getting lost simply because the directions were a little screwy this time. There are three islands we'll have to visit to finish this fetch quest here: Elba, which is pretty much straight north of Marse, Loire, which is northeast of town, and Ulupp, which is southeast of town. What makes that confusing is that the guy who told us about the pirates also told us where the islands were relative to the town said north, east, and south, which wasn't exactly right, but forgivable, I suppose, given the layout of the islands, relative to the continent.
And it's still no excuse, really, because this should have been easy enough to figure out anyway. You see, Loire Island is the one with the big-ass cave on the island and a pirate ship parked by the shore. But because I've spent so much time screwing around on the other islands, I'm going to have to end this here and pick this up next time, when we go to Laguna's Island.