Toggle Background Color
S01E03: Do Not Name Your Dark Order 'The Dark Order.'
So, before we get into the meat of this update I have a little story to tell and something to clear up.
Months back I joined the Aldorlea Games Discord. This was not unnoticed, since my welcome message had an immediate response. Someone recognised my username and asked if I was the one who did The Way and Master of the Wind LPs on this very forum. I said yes.
Cut to very recently and I've only checked that Discord very very infrequently for any announcements.
Not even 12 hours after I posted this thread I got @'d in a message in the Laxius series specific channel by someone (not sure if they was the same person as before) mentioning that I'd started this LP, with a link to it.
I want to be clear I'm not mad, annoyed or upset with that person, they actually saved me from tooting my own horn sometime in the future.
Anyway, since then I've been questioned on (and I defended myself) what I wrote in the OP by a few people there, including two of the moderators.
...Well, defended is a strong word. They've all been very nice, polite and understanding. The discussion, though, did make me realise I should be real clear on something that I might have muddled in the OP.
I -do- legitimately -like- this game in the overall, in spite of itself.
Yes, it has some wildly inappropriate stuff I would rather see removed, and it's kind of sexist and sometimes tries to be too edgy. The combat is ehh. It's bog standard RPGMaker 2k, which isn't great. But there are things I legitimately like about how it plays. I hope you'll also see why -eventually-, but its not so apparent at the outset. Even if you don't agree with me, I hope you can come to understand it. I've finished Laxius Power 1 one more time than I've finished Master of the Wind. 3 times. This will be the fourth. And there's been a number of stalled runs over the years.
The story does have some good ideas here and there too. Sadly, the characters, writing and execution typically fail those ideas.
Yes, I am going to ream the games ass on its missteps even though I am fond of it and you all are welcome to as well.
Annnd while I do strongly dislike Laxius Power 2, Laxius Power 3 is just a massive improvement over this game, and is the Laxius title I would say is the closest to being a... polished, well-done old school... JRPG/CRPG mashup. The closest. I think it still fumbles it a bit, but its a very admirable and ambitious effort.
Laxius Power 1 definitely has a lot of time, effort and love poured into it. Just in a kind of inept manner that does not look pretty.
I will make one last point though: No offense to Indinera and the people that genuinely think the story and characters are great, but to me it veers all too often into unintentionally hilarious territory by virtue of just having a lot of strange dialogue (even when the English improves), bizarre ideas and some odd and/or inept executions of common story tropes, -especially- in the Laxius Force trilogy.
I'd say its endearing because of that. I probably only got through the Force trilogy because of that, because boy howdy do I not like how they play.
If I sound really inconsistent, well. I did say my feelings on this series and game in particular are complicated. It's not helped by the fact that the games are all dramatically different in style, structure and tone (well, the Laxius Force trilogy is pretty consistent between games but the other 5...)
Anyway, immediately after leaving the Checkpoint, I encounter one of the Chanterless Woods enemies we've not seen yet.
Rough Hound. Again, nothing notable. It's worth 5XP.
Random says 'Whoa!' in response to this. He does this a lot. He says Whoa! At a lot of things you examine. Luci's bio had that line about her being easily impressed but that should have been in Randoms.
This happens if we try to enter the Forest Maze. Random's side quest/main plot senses are already so keen despite being a novice adventurer. Well, if you take the extremely mediocre and boring prequel 3 Stars of Destiny (one of only two Laxius games on Steam! The other is Fortress of Hell!) into account he's already had quite an epic and boring adventure.
When we examine this bush, just north of the other, Sarah does -not- provoke a small swarm of mosquito-bees.
Hahahaha why do you have to call them Big Cows.
If Coryool was not in the party, this could be a very dangerous fight (for a party that's still 50% level 1), but he's basically an ultra tank at this point, even with nearly no gear.
The fight goes pretty well for us anyway. Luci's Fire Tempest has a decent chance to blind and she always goes first right now, so that works well. Sarah's Sylph Fog also poisons and numbs. She didn't land any numbs, but I discovered that according to the manual that poison reduces SPD by half.
Hm! It appears Big Cow may be communists labouring to overthrow the monarchies! This is the start of one of the lengthy subplots of the game. One that indirectly leads to recruiting our second hidden character.
There's a bunch of dates and gibberish in the nearby book. This is another mistake Indinera makes a lot. Antic (probably meaning Antique?) where ancient would be better used.
The Big Cows have been trawling the bargain bin, it seems.
Coryool opens his mouth for the first time since we recruited him to be excited about 7 Beers.
Dej-- What? Why? I assume he means shit and not... something else. I guess that's not an outhouse right there?
Let's get out of here, and go check out Chanterless.
First things first. Let's check our mail in... Chanterless?
Indinera is fond of just giving out odd bits of trivia like this.
Apparently the guy running the Post Office knows Sarah by sight, since they were going to deliver a package to Rillia for her.
Niiice. And add the Sea Ring on top of these and Sarah's now the most powerful party-member.
We leave and head over to the house next door to the Post Office
There's no music in this house, just loud, constant, ticking from a clock. Every time we examine something gross, Sarah whines about it. That chest has an antidote in it.
That bottle of milk is curdled.
I believe Razor Sun is a powerful fire spell. Or non-elemental. One of the two.
Some kind of pot.
You talk to this old guy like 10 times, I wasn't counting, and his dialogue changes.
And you talk to him like another 20, 30 times...
This part feel like it took like 50 times or something. Eventually he asks if we said anything.
Luci tells off Random for using bad words in the same sentence as Yveen.
Uhm. I'll quote the rest of this event here but the screen turns blue and if Luci is to be trusted, Yveen appears.
That's it here. 5 MIND is nothing but that's fine for a short nothing event like this. Only takes a couple minutes of mashing Z.
I had to go out of my way to run into these guys. They go down easily.
You get pretty well-rewarded for it too. You can keep on running into these guys forever, so Random is either being merciful, or Marlon has a lot of merry men.
The local inn is also the general store. I grab fethers.
Hm. Maybe Buck was being serious.
Woo. Let's get outta here.
Damn. I sell a couple things and fight a couple encounters to buy two of these.
This renders us completely broke.
And so Random loses his shit.
I know just how to cheer him up.
North of Chanterless is this stump. By the way, that's Tamara the witch you can see over there.
Sarah notices the monsters first.
Guardians of the what.
Anyway, these three aren't that tough but the RNG can fuck you over with them. They can do a fair bit of damage but the real nastiness is their paralysis spell. Paralysis, I don't think wears out on its own. Or it lasts a fair while at the very least.
In my first attempt at this fight, Sarah got paralysed, then Luci, then Random, and then all three got KO'd and Coryool carried the fight by virtue of the fact they could not do jackshit to him. I still reloaded anyway.
The second attempt, we just completely bodied them and no one even got paralysed. They give 21XP and 160 GP each, so that's something.
A wooden plinth is no stone and anvil.
Everyone chimes in at this point. Luci basically says DUH YOU THINK THIS WAS GONNA BE EASY? Coryool says he'll do it if Random can't and Sarah rebukes Coryool.
Anyway, there's nothing else here and that effect remains on the plinth even though the sword is gone.
Our first relic. Random is now the most powerful member of the party again.
Well, let's get on with the story.
This town hall sucks.
Way at the back we find a meeting room. The Mayor is apparently pale with fright or worry, so Sarah asks the natural question.
What. That's not what you- Ah, fuck it.
Apparently a werewolf is holed up inside the church, as we already heard. They've locked it in, but think if they wait for help from Rillia it will kill again.
Yes, we will do the bad job for the 5,000 GP they are offering.
The party reacts with progressively longer 'Whoa's that have more and more exclamation marks until it culminates in Random revealing he has a terrible poker face.
I don't know, werewolves seem way too high level for novice adventurers.
This group would not inspire any confidence in me. But it's not like we're getting an advance.
The council tells us the Church is also infested with low-level 'demoniac' creatures and they wonder why that has happened all of a sudden.
The Mayor gives us the church key and recommends we speak to their best fighter, Rene.
Rene is an idiot.
Well, let's get started on our first dungeon.
Random is apparently a door slammer.
And an average statue enjoyer.
This ghost floats around the main hall but you cannot interact with it.
The main hall has four paths leading off, two to each side. Five if you count a locked... column... door thing.
These guys are nasty and we're somewhat underleveled at just level 3. They do forty damage on average and can poison, so they can easily take someone out quickly.
They can also cast Fresh Wave on themselves.
As opposed to the alive ones.
I don't know about the breast size obsession, Random. I'd have thought a slight figure would be what you'd like if you have an elf girlfriend. I guess anime and manga tend to have elves be extremely well-endowed though.
Worth 13XP and 5 GP.
Ah, here we are. So. SO. The Black Wolves and Stagnations hit pretty hard and the Blue Light can cast P-Blitz which did 110 damage to Sarah, which one-shot her. On my way out to rest at the inn and revive her, Random also got KO'd in another fight.
The dark bats seem to be comparatively harmless.
Dark Bat - XP 8 - GP 4
Black Wolf - XP 11
Blue Light - XP 11 - GP 20
Stagnation - XP 17
Random finally gets an attack. It costs 8 MP, which is exactly what he has right now. He can also cast Wave twice.
Luci also levels up. P-Flare is Pw=86 and 2H5M, so its a... a not-small improvement.
After I revive her, Sarah also levels and learns this. This is a HUGE improvement over the 50 Pw, 2H4M Wave, and it heals two status effects as well!
I never even cast Wave once yet!
We start exploring the right half of the map.
Argh! Alive skeleton! Luci's P-Flare does most of the work with a whopping 221 damage so it dies in one turn. Though, Random can already crit for 400 which is... wild.
It's worth 20XP and 55GP and always drops 'Antic Sword.'
Randoms power grows obscenely quickly.
Anyway, the right half of the church has what we need to progress. Of course it's 666. The rest is empty rooms you'll see shortly.
16XP and 30GP is the battle reward for a Heavy Strike from Random and a P-Flare from Luci slaying it in one turn.
The upper right path is just a room with the mimic thing we get no -real- reward for slaying.
The upper left path also only leads to a single room.
"Blah blah blah this is stupid cleric stuff" Random says.
Well. Free is free, I guess.
Enter the code into a weird box by these columns...
Luci says this means the villagers must be really scared of the werewolf, so I guess this is meant to be some kind of ward or something??
Coryool says he's not scared at all.
The what? Is that a thing?
Triggering FFVII flashbacks.
There's 510 GP in that crate though, we're really raking it in now. We're at 2018 GP just from this dungeon.
P-Freeze is Pw=86 2H4M... and for some reason it LOSES the silence status effect Freeze had, unless Indy just forgot to note it down.
P-Blitz is Pw=96 2H4M.
Anyway, we go through the door to the next level. And here I'd like to show off a map of this level that I found online. Someone called Wise Guy has the first half of Laxius Power maps on their site at : http://videoc.free.fr/laxiuspower/walkthru/walkthru/index.html
Sarah helpfully points out this place is full of water.
Zombies are the most common enemy type down here. Can run into them in the Church too, but only did once. They don't do much and often waste turns waiting and watching. But they are walls of HP compared to other enemies.
Worth 12XP and 40GP each, sometimes drop an Antidote.
Where's Rhue of Landorin when you need him? That beautiful mysterious anomaly of my heart. Or, well, even Shroud's magically charged jumps would do in a pinch.
Hmmm. Let's look at that statue. Maybe it has a clue.
This is probably a clue.
This miniboss isn't too tough. It has one attack called Ground Clouds that is sort of nasty. It hits Sarah for 20ish damage, Luci and Random for 50ish and Coryool for 1. And it has somewhat strong attacks and a decent amount of HP.
Eh. It's worth 45Xp and 500GP.
That's better than a clue.
Woo! Those other two crates are both mimics. With no rewards.
We'll need this place a long ass time from now. Sarah seems to be creeped out by it and not the 'demoniac creatures' for some reason.
One time use herb.
Two pathetically weak ghosts are hiding in the middle crate. They're not even worth the MP of the P-Flare that one shot one of them.
ANNIHILATED IN ONE TURN
11XP and 2GP each.
The 'stupid crate' only had 3GP in it.
Power up still more.
We back track to where the gargoyle was and go the other direction.
Luci immediately says COOL DIBS! It sounds like this thing should have been called the Ruby Rod too. Asmodeus' one. It's past the 666 code door even.
A thing can be holy to a dark god!
The last path has absolutely nothing so we return to the gate.
The gate doesn't open or anything, we just teleport to the other side.
Random says 'Be ready to die' at this guy he doesn't know anything about.
He's got a lot of HP, but he -is- some sort of samurai. The only other really notable thing about him is he drops a lot of GP.
So, he's worth 31XP and 530GP and sometimes a Sandwich.
After Random kills him, he's like 'Why was that guy even here.'
The werewolf is then spotted behind the throne.
And we give chase as he flees.
So here's the basement map.
Now we're in another area.
This only works once.
There's another crate with 67GP just north of this one. I want to point out that we entered the church with 0 GP and now have 4800GP.
A wooden statue terrifies Random.
These guys are nasty only because, seemingly at random, double hit, sometimes.
They're worth 13XP and 5GP.
Coryool gets a powerful move he can currently use only once.
Four zombies are stuff inside this crate and we receive no reward.
Nothing remarkable about these at all.
Giant Aspics are worth 13XP and 1GP.
... Poor Luci.
It is a big improvement though, no matter how sexily lowcut and thin it is.
The right half of a cave has a path leading to another part of the cave.
The barrel GP and this teaser chest are the only things of note in this smaller area.
It is otherwise a complete waste of your time. We head back to the main part of the cave.
Air Cone is deceptively good. Used on the right enemies (One with a MP pool), you can keep Luci in MP without using items.
We find another Trollish Gauntlet
Phoenix Shine is the revive spell. It's Pw=50 and 0H4M.
He is a complete cinch. Dies in one turn before doing anything.
Random cuts the head off and Sarah makes a fuss.
Then the cat chimes in, scaring Random.
Herasia somehow manages to communicate that he's detected a path under a boulder in the werewolfs den.
It's a big one apparently.
He meant that you wouldn't get stuck, dumbass!
Sarah starts going on about what treasures there might be in this hypothetical True Lair.
Anyway, the party ventures onward.
And here's the two river cave maps.
Hm. That looks like bad news.
Some of these guys are spinning around for some reason.
Grand Commandanter*. Indy changes his title as time goes on. Or he promoted himself.
So those two guys are meant to actually be Demons.
Anyway, the ritual immediately ends and the Dark Order begins tidying up the room. It's nice that they're so orderly and neat.
The party hides behind a rock and Random immediately falls asleep and Sarah has to wake him up. He lies and says he was thinking.
The priests and demons are gone.
Random says they'll just have to search the room because this needs investigating.
Random only just got that werewolf head and now he's already bored of it, his first battle-trophy/bounty/heroic deed and he's not even been paid for it yet!
Luci basically says no one would give a shit about demons and cultists -just because- they're called the Dark Order. Even though they're clearly evil by their name.
Randoms just happy to have the success be entirely theirs. Which is the kind of attitude only a RPG hero could reasonably take.
Anyway, YES THE FIRST DUNGEON IS STILL ONGOING. But this update is getting long as. So we'll cut it here. Next time, we'll do the last floor of the first dungeon, do some chores and then we'll finally be on to the much shorter but annoying second dungeon.