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Chapter 3: Takatoshi Hijiyama 1

1944, huh…?

Music: LONER (Azusa Chiba)

The sooner I’m out of here, the better.

Someone’s changed the shifter’s access key, huh?

A young man runs up. As the girl turns, the holographic screens quickly disappear.

So you came after me, Hijiyama-kun.
This has to be some misunderstanding. You can’t be a spy, can you?
Hm… Sounds like the professor, all right.

Why did you run off? The military’s looking for you.

But you’re the professor’s daughter! You can’t be a spy—it doesn’t make sense!
Sorry to break it to you. I’m not his daughter. The real Kiriko Douji’s still over in Tokyo.

I don’t need to steal any secrets on the Sentinels.

Consider Kiriko Douji

(Professor Douji led the Sentinel Project for our efforts in the war. His daughter, Kiriko-san, came along with him, but… What does it mean if this isn’t her?)

Consider Sentinel

(Is she serious? She says she built the Sentinel herself, but…

…What happened to you?
That’s about what I figured you’d say.

Use Kiriko Douji on Kiriko Douji

Then who are you?
You wouldn’t believe me if I told you. Or maybe… This really isn’t about who I am. Maybe it’s just about what you feel towards me.

Use Sentinel on Kiriko Douji

You built them?
Yeah, that was me.

We are about… 45 minutes into this game, I’d like to remind everyone. Already just casually dropping shit most games would save for the end.

I drew up the designs in an editor. The I just had to send the order into an automated factory.

No, you’re probably just confused, that’s all…
I even implanted the linking component into your head.

I’m sorry, what?

Though you wouldn’t remember, of course. Anesthesia, and all.
When you came to the factory… You said you were there on behalf of the professor…
It was as good a cover story as any.

You’re kind of a simple guy. There’s something about you, though…

I’m saying… I’m gonna miss you.

This is goodbye.

That’s impossible…

If we move Hijiyama to the far left, we can examine these bushes.

She can’t have had time to run into the mountains. Where did Kiriko-san go…?

Music: Sneaking Suspicions (Kikuchi Yukinori)

He’s the one who snuck into the factory! There’s something fishy about him… But… If he’s working with her, then… He might know where she’s gone. I’ll hide behind a tree and see what he’s up to…

Something about this situation is just abjectly hilarious to me. Maybe it’s that Hijiyama here really is dirt simple and has no idea what the hell is going on, maybe it’s just the game making you physically move him behind the tree, and maybe it’s the big “Hide Behind Tree” text, I dunno.

Hey Hijiyama, you’re wearing bright white clothing! Maybe get down in the bushes a little at least?

Might still catch up if I’m fast. Coordinates read Sector 4, in the year 1984…

So you’re the spy… But there’s no escaping me now.
What are you doing here?
If I told you, you’d laugh in my face.

Geez, no one has any faith in our boy Hijiyama’s ability to understand.

Answer me, or I’ll do more than laugh at you!
…I’m going to time travel to another era.


Consider To Another Time

(He’s just playing games with me. “Time travel”? Really? This is reality, not some penny dreadful…)

I’m a big fan of this game’s writing.

Use Kiriko Douji on Suspicious Man

I knew it…
Though that wasn’t actually her, of course.
Is that really true? She said something along those lines, too…
…“She”, huh? Must’ve been pretty convincing, then.

Hey, you. Reading this. Don’t worry about it. I am telling you not to worry about it.

You’re just trying to confuse me…

Consider Tsukasa Okino

(This can’t be true, can it? Was the Kiriko Douji I knew… really a man? This “Tsukasa Okino”?)

Use To Another Time on Suspicious Man

Try a better story next time.
This “Kiriko Douji” of yours? He did it himself just moments ago. Escaped from here into the future.

I don’t have time for this. Step back. I’m going after him.

Yeah, he just said that, dude. Keep up.

Where? Show me.
You don’t want to get caught in this shift. Keep your distance.
Right, your “time travel.”

Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Music: LONER (Azusa Chiba)

And we’re suddenly 41 years in the future. Of course.

He knows you’d beat his ass, Wajima-san! Probably shittin’ his pants right now.
Turned tail and ran, huh?


Consider Yakisoba Pan

(Noodles stir-fried in sauce, enfolded in sweetened bread… I don’t trust much in this post-war world… But if there’s one exception, it’s my yakisoba pan.)

Listening to this English VA pronounce “yakisoba pan” gives me infinite life

Nearly knocked my friggin’ arm out of its socket.
You wanna apologize?
Oh, did I hit you? Sorry about that.
You’re sorry? “Sorry” don’t pay my goddamn hospital bills.

Oh! I’m wise to this scam! Kiryu’ll show up any minute now and wreck these guys, just hang back.

So? I don’t have money, if that’s what you’re after.

People been talkin’ about this guy. He’s the one who’s been snatchin’ all the jackets!
The hell? Wait, yeah… This guy’s wearin’ one of our uniforms.
Oh, so you know the guy who owned this? I don’t have any relatives around. I’m basically homeless at the moment. So the clothes and the cash were a really big help. He was a generous guy. Tell him I said thanks. Take care.

The delicious yakisoba pan flies out of Hijiyama’s hand as Wajima grabs him!

I didn’t even get a single bite…

You got a problem with me, buddy?
You’re the one who’s about to have a problem.

Sic ‘im.

L-Look, we’ll get you another snack, man!
I’ve got no mercy for people who waste food. Especially yakisoba pan.

I thought you called me out for a fight, Wajima.

And who are you? A friend of theirs?

I didn’t ask you to fight my battles, pal.

You’re that Jacket Snatcher. Hijiyama or somethin’…

I told them I didn’t need the help, but they wouldn’t take no for an answer.
Yeah, I’ll bet.

Don’t go picking fights you can’t win.
I’ve heard enough, douchebag. And you owe me a fight.

Well, you’re gonna regret it…

I guess you fit right in here in the ‘80s. Here I figured I’d have to check up on you.

I know that voice… and that face…!

I came for a fight, and I’m gettin’ one.

Music: Between The Lines (Kikuchi Yukinori)

He has to be close by.

That bastard kicked like a horse. Pretty tough for a thug. He almost had me for a moment there…

Nothing on the left side…

…nothing on the right.

Let’s try up the stairs, then.

“Kiriko” looks surprised briefly to see Hijiyama, but continues down the stairs.

Were you looking for me all night? Still as reckless as ever, huh?

Don’t try to talk around it.

I figured you’d be here soon, so. Got some breakfast for you, too.
Half a year I’ve been searching for you. Half a year, thinking of what I’d say to your face.
I got you some yakisoba pan… You didn’t get any yesterday, right?

*gulp* Look, th-that’s not the point!

We’re going whether you like it or not.
And if I say no?

Besides, you’re a man, aren’t you?

Use Tsukasa Okino on Kiriko Douji

Why do you wear women’s clothes?

You weren’t complaining when you confessed to me.

Heh. You’re kind of a dick, you know that, Okino?

(blushing) ……
I’m not exactly the picture of masculinity anyway. Better than trying to pass as some militant with a buzzcut.
So, why are you dressed like that now?

(blushing) U-Uh…
You’re a funny guy, Hijiyama-kun.

This lets me hide the fact that I’m even alive.

Use Kiriko Douji on Tsukasa Okino

Fun little detail: now that we’ve asked about his true identity, “Kiriko’s” identity has changed to Okino even in this Thought Cloud menu.

Even convincing everyone you were a girl…?
Professor Douji thought it’d be a good idea. See, he’s… Well, all Shikishima’s tech really began with him. Shikishima made incredible strides after the war. And a lot of that was thanks to his work. Though it didn’t hurt that I taught him about his future’s technology.
But why? Why would you make that deal with him?
…For the Sentinel.

Use Sentinel on Tsukasa Okino

It was an accident that it showed up at all. It was never meant to be there. I mean, come on. You’ve seen it. You think they could make that back in the 1940s? Even here in the ‘80s, it’s out of our league. That’s not human craftsmanship. It was made in the future, in an automated factory. Let me put it in layman’s terms: There was an incident, and it got broken. Our goal was to fix it there so it could fight again.
But wasn’t it meant to be used against the USA?
Then who or what was it made to fight…?

I have to get back, no matter what. If we can finish the Sentinel Project, we can win the war.
…You’re a good guy, but kind of an open book, you know that?
Say whatever you want. I don’t care who you really are anymore. Just get me home. I know about the air raids. And Okinawa, Hiroshima, Nagasaki… I can’t just let those attacks happen. I can’t let those people die.
So you did some reading in the history section. Between all the manual labor you’ve been doing, and your living conditions—or, well, lack thereof, you’re a lot more determined than I expected.
You’ve been keeping tabs on me…?

There’s something I still need to do. And that something is here in 1985. I just need you to wait until that’s finished. Actually, I’d really appreciate your help with it. It does involve you, after all. When it’s finally all over, then…

How’s that sound?

No, I… What I want is to go back to my own time.
If you’re sure.

My base is over there on the second floor.

I’m wearing the uniform. Where do you think?

Your yakisoba pan’s on the desk inside.

Wow, was that your stomach? You haven’t eaten anything since yesterday, huh? Go ahead. The door’s unlocked.

Stop being stubborn and go get some breakfast.

Welcome back, old friend.

Maybe he really was just manipulating me… Well, it is yakisoba pan. Not much I could do…

Consider The Uniform

(If he’s in that uniform, he’s probably going to school… But what’s he trying to accomplish there?)


Well, as long as I’ve got it…

The sauce is so sweet, yet so spicy…!

Hijiyama snarfs the entire thing down in two bites.

It won’t do me any good if he slips away. I might as well check my old school…

And so ends another prologue.

We’re now faced with another combat tutorial to break things up.

Music: (ISOLEUCINE) (Yoshimi Kudo) (Definitely listen to this)

“We will never stop until our foes lie dead.” I’m not about to forget my duty, Okino. Where to next?
Don’t get ahead of yourself. We’re not done here.

I’ll release some more drones to expand our search range.
Good. Leave the fisticuffs to me.

Jamolar? Is that what you call the big round ones?

A G-Moler is a Deimos built for excavation. It uses the spinning blades on its back to dig into the ground. They need to bore a path to the terminal. It’s the core of their strategy, and we need to stop them.
A slowpoke like that? All I need is one strike to take that one out.
They can withstand intensely high pressures and break through any rock. If you underestimate it, you’re the one who’s going to get taken out.

Yes… That’s the point closest from the surface to the terminal. But your Sentinel’s a 1st-gen, which means more mobility. That’ll come in handy here. Can you take out some kaiju on your way there?
I don’t have much choice. We’re going in.

This is important. The only way to restore EP besides defending is to defeat an enemy, which will cause the person who defeated it to regain a sum of EP based on the enemy type. The stronger the kaiju, the more EP you get back for killing it.

And before you ask, yes, this does encourage you to kill the strong ones in as few attacks as possible instead of wearing them down more slowly!

Despite that conversation, Hijiyama is fighting alone. What, Okino’s not cool enough for a Sentinel? Or too cool? Whichever?

Hijiyama’s in a 1st-generation Sentinel, which means he’s all about melee attacks. If it’s not directly in front of him, he largely can’t do shit about it. Thankfully, 1st-gen models have high mobility and speed, and a few of their actions let them move while attacking. One such skill is Leap Attack, which is exactly what you think it is.

Tackle is similar but slightly more powerful and much more hilarious—it lets him charge along a path set by the player, damaging and knocking away anything in said path. And the knockback means it can hit multiple times if you’re lucky!

Niiiiiiice. Let’s just take out the small swarm near the terminal now and finish them off.

A couple Rush Attacks (4 hits, 800 power each, 0 EP) from there should clean up any stragglers.

You’re that guy from before! What are you scheming? I won’t allow it!
Wait, Hijiyama-kun… Let him handle this.
Are you sure? He’s about to do something to the saucer.
It’s all part of the plan. Besides, there’s something I want us to try.
…Fine. I trust you.


The terminal has a few defense mechanisms in place. Now that we’ve got access to them, you should be able to command them yourself. Let the terminal attack the kaiju directly.
We can make the saucer itself attack them?

It’s kind of hard to tell anything’s happening in this shot, but the numbers are a good sign. We like the numbers.

The terminal forced a shutdown of designated targets within range.
That was amazing… Let’s fire off some more of those!
Don’t know if we can do that, but… we have a couple other tricks up our sleeve. Let me take a look.

Now, we just clean up the two remaining G-Molers and the mission will end.

All of a sudden, the terminal is surrounded by kaiju!

But another wave quickly shuts them down.

All the hostiles in range destroyed themselves. Like magic.
If we had that kind of weaponry, you should have told me! Why bother with the Sentinels when we have this?

Because giant robots are fucking cool, idiot!

It takes time to activate. And if we get taken out before it’s ready, then it’s all over.
It means… the terminal would be fully locked down. Nobody could ever open it again.
Is that… a bad thing?
This is Renya Gouto. You are one of the compatible pilots from Sector 5. Who are you communicating with?
I’d really rather not deal with this. Don’t tell him, Hijiyama-kun.

What, are they exes?

…No one. I’m fighting solo.

Gouto has no further questions about this!

…Sentinels are being activated in another location. No. 17 and No. 19… Just how many Sentinels are online now…?

Takatoshi Hijiyama is voiced by Kaiji Tang, who’s been getting a lot of work recently. You may be familiar with him as Ichiban Kasuga in Yakuza: Like a Dragon, or as Iwai in Persona 5. I like his voice a lot.