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Music: Voyage To Tomorrow (Hitoshi Sakimoto)

Chapter 22: Destruction 2

Well, let’s jump back into the fray.

This is our first encounter with Brain Overload, which as mentioned earlier prevents us from putting afflicted pilots on the attack or defense teams.

For Megumi, we’re going to unlock and equip her Forced Cooling Device and Multi-Lock Missiles. We’re also going to upgrade her Arm-Mounted Pulse Lasers to +1 (Number Fired +1, POW +4) and Multi-Lock Missiles to +2 (Number Fired +0 to +6, POW +2 to +4).

We’ll also be upgrading Hijiyama’s Demolisher Blade (Number of Attacks +2 to +4, POW +3 to +6), Leap Attack (Lock-on Distance +0 to +80, Lock-on Range +0 to +60), and Rush Attack (Number of Attacks +0 to +1, Setup Movement +0 to +50) to +2 each.

Tomi gets her Main Battery Heavy Railgun unlocked and upgraded to +2 (POW +0 to +100, WT 6s to 5.8s). She also upgrades her 6 Multi-Launching Rapid Cannons to +1 (Number Fired +0 to +1, POW +0 to +7).

This is the team we’ll be using for this battle. Ogata, Hijiyama, Ryoko, Kisaragi, Yakushiji, and Amiguchi. I didn’t even notice the bonus objective requires Kisaragi to be on the strike team, that was just a stroke of luck on my part, heh. Anyway, let’s get to it.

Video: Destruction Wave 1-3

Music: (VALINE) (Yoshimi Kudo)

It’s basically just a huge crane, though, right?

The plasma cannon’s what you need to watch out for. Sentinel armor doesn’t stand a chance against it.
But it’s just a big dumb crane! Why’d they put all the weapons on it?
Once they started facing resistance, they updated their designs. Trying to match our own force.
Wait, you mean those things only have weapons because the Sentinels showed up?
Maybe, but we can still take them down… At least, we probably can…

How do you know that, Megumi…?
They’re coming. Be careful. We’re toast if we don’t win here, right? So… let’s get out there and fight back.

Quick word of warning: I actually reloaded after my first take of this fight because I got a D rating! Four of my pilots almost died and the terminal defense was below 50%! This is actually the first moderately challenging fight in that you have to think at all about what you’re doing.

Let’s start with the classics, though. Shinonome’s Sentry Guns will be pretty useful.

As you can see in the top-right, this battle is a little unusual in that we start with a pretty massive horde already spawned in addition to more enemy drops.

Those drops largely come in the form of more Hi-Quads outfitted with missiles and plasma cannons to attack anything nearby, so watch out.

Multi-Lock Missiles aren’t great for taking down Hi-Quads. They’re just too weak and barely scratch their armor. However, they’re pretty well-used defensively to shoot down missiles while also attacking anything near the Hi-Quads.

We’re gonna get some use out of Megumi’s Shield Matrix, even if it only lasts for 6 seconds. I’m not actually sure if it’s even possible for enemy attacks to penetrate these shields while they’re active. They’re pretty strong, is what I’m saying.

Hijiyama and Ogata’s main goal at the moment is running around and using Demolisher Blade to break the several active Hi-Quads open and feast on the tasty Meta-Chips inside.

Ogata, unfortunately, is largely stuck using Leap Attack here to move around and sweep up ground enemies because of bad placement on my part.

During all this, Tomi is firing off railguns. They’re not much use against the Hi-Quads, but they can at least get the enemies around them pretty well.

And Hijiyama gets another one.

At some point in the chaos, a horde of Drillflies appears. They’re going to be the primary threat for the rest of the battle, and will take more than a few Multi-Lock Missiles and railguns to eliminate. We fly in Shu and Megumi to take them down, but they’re at risk from the missiles being fired.

Ryoko can at least fire off some Multi Rocket Launchers from a distance to soften them up, though. They’re still firing off their own missiles at the same time, however…

I’m fine…! It’s not as bad as it looks.
Come on… Just don’t be a hero, all right?

This is a warning message, which will play whenever a Sentinel’s HP becomes critical. They’re unique to each character, but they’re pretty short and to-the-point.

Anyway, let’s use this Shield Matrix on Shu to keep him from needing to withdraw.

One of our main priorities now is protecting the rest of our pilots from missiles, if only to preserve our S rating by not taking too much Sentinel damage. Railguns, rapid cannons, and Multi-Lock Missiles all serve a purpose there.

Ogata and Hijyama’s job now is just to take down the two remaining Hi-Quads.

Unfortunately, I make a critical error by not paying attention here and accidentally Leap Attack Hijiyama directly into the path of some incoming missiles! Oops! Thankfully, Shu is nearby and can just use Multi-Lock Missiles to get rid of them.

The Drillfly swarm is almost gone at this point.

Hijiyama and Ogata also manage to destroy the last two Hi-Quads in a third of a second. Nice sync, boys!

And no more Drillflies!

We take down the last G-Moler with Ryoko’s Heavy Knuckles to end the fight.

Dammit, the whole city’s on fire…

We have evacuation measures in place, but they’re far from perfect. And the efforts still lack direction. We tried to reach out to governments and financial institutions through Shikishima… for all the good that did.

We’ve got kaiju signals popping up nearby another terminal…
We got tons of civilians over there, thanks to all the highways being backed up.
Come on, Miwako… Please tell me you didn’t take a bus… Hey, maybe we could send a drone out to check on Miwako?
On it. Worth a shot, anyway… Hope my mom and dad made it out. I told them exactly what to do…

It’s always a little funny when you see the MVP and it’s a 2nd-gen who did very nearly nothing getting boosted by all the kills their Sentry Guns got.

Oh, Ryoko got a new Pilot Skill.

Music: Voyage To Tomorrow (Hitoshi Sakimoto)

We’re going to upgrade Ei’s Demolisher Blade to +2 (Number of Attacks +2 to +4, POW +3 to +6) and his Rush Attack to +2 (Setup Movement +0 to +50).

We’re also going to increase the Meta-System to Level 5 and the Score Multiplier to Level 3.

Finally, Gouto gets Shield Matrix, which exhausts our Meta-Chip supply. Time to go get some more!

This is the skill Ryoko just unlocked, by the way.

And with that, we head once more into the fight.

Video: Destruction Wave 1-4

Music: (VALINE) (Yoshimi Kudo)

What, these wheely guys? Are they really that bad?

Its entire body is filled with RDX. Once a target’s within blast range, the whole kaiju detonates.
A single Drum Mine self-destructing could cause incredible damage to our Sentinels.

True. If we knock them away just before detonation, that could wipe out a whole swarm of kaiju at once.
We use their own weapons against them…! But is it really going to be that easy?
Now you’re talkin’. We’ll give ‘em a taste of their own damn medicine.

These are Drum Mines. They’re not actually mines because they’re not fucking stationary, they just explode like mines. By the way, you know that devious strategy the team devised a second ago? Yeah, ignore that. We’re just gonna rush these things down as quickly as possible, and if by accident we pull that off once or twice, so be it.

Drum Mines do appear to have a pesky quirk, visible in the fight video, of occasionally catapulting themselves over to the nearest Sentinel, but they don’t have enough HP to make this a credible threat. The one time I noticed this happen in the video was one rushing over to Juro at about 1:51 remaining on the fight timer, but it got instantly deleted by two Sentry Guns firing at the same time.

We start with some Sentry Gun placement, natch.

And some Flare Torpedoes, why not?

One mistake I make in this fight is moving Iori around too much because I forgot what her skill does and misremember it as having something to do with being near Ei.

Whatever, she takes down the last enemy herself. Wait… the last enemy? Already? Geez. That fight was dirt simple.

Dammit… Hope everyone got out okay…
It’s never easy to see your own home up in flames… I know this must be hard.
We’re fighting to defend our homeland… We knew going in we wouldn’t come out unscathed.
Even if we win this fight, how many people are we gonna lose? Goddammit, is any of this city even gonna be left!?
Get ahold of yourself, Ogata! If we lose here, nobody makes it out alive.
Even if it ends up tearing this city apart… What else can we do but fight back?

One cute thing about these scenes: pilots who have Brain Overload aren’t in their Sentinels.

Wait, Miura is the MVP? Huh. A bit surprising, but if you review the footage it makes sense. Despite the message about knocking them back, long-range Sentinels are pretty well-equipped to take down Drum Mines quickly and efficiently. That plus the Sentry Guns meant our 1st-gen pilots might at well have not shown up, because they couldn’t even make it to the Drum Mines to kill them.

Three new skills. We’ll check those out when we get back.

And those are the skills we unlocked.

Well, that wraps up this edition of Destruction! What next?

Juro Kurabe
Iori Fuyusaka
Megumi Yakushiji
Natsuno Minami
Yuki Takamiya
Shu Amiguchi
Keitaro Miura
Tomi Kisaragi

There's also:

Takatoshi Hijiyama (Locked behind Ogata)
Ei Sekigahara (Locked behind Natsuno)

The poll is here.