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  #481  
Old 11-29-2017, 01:25 PM
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Diego tries to finish off this final archer, but isn't quite up to the task as the weapon triangle rears its ugly head.



Fortunately, Darius has him covered.



That just leaves this jerk, who we stab...





...drops some rocks on...



...and stab again.



Well, maybe you shouldn't love so many evil shit-heels. Or be one.



I'll refrain from any obvious jokes about his father's name out of respect for the soon to be deceased.



Kane is gone, and no one cares, least of all our heroes, but he did drop his rad sword! I'm pretty sure that I forgot to equip it afterwards. >_<



Oh right, there were Crimson Armor units on this map. Six of them, I guess. Who knew?



Next time: Vandal Hearts continues to demonstrate that it doesn't know what a beach is.
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  #482  
Old 11-29-2017, 01:42 PM
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Vandalier Ash vs. T.G. Cid: whoodwin
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  #483  
Old 11-29-2017, 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Westerhof View Post
Vandalier Ash vs. T.G. Cid: whoodwin
I think that would depends on what equipment Cid has. And whether he has Night Sword. And if the Mighty Sword skills would work on Ash's V equipment (I would assume not). And also what other abilities Cid has.
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  #484  
Old 11-30-2017, 07:37 AM
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Vandalier Ash vs. T.G. Cid: whoodwin
Hrm. It would entirely depend on positioning, I think! In a close-quarters slugfest, it'd be a stalemate at first, since Ash can completely heal himself to full every turn, but eventually Cid would get a Stop, KO, or Doom proc to stick and that would be it. That being said, Ash does have a pretty impressive movement range, so he'd probably be able to keep away from Cid, in which case he could burn him down in a few turns with infinite range Plasma Waves. And if they started out on opposite ends of a battlefield, then Cid would never ever get close.

Also, if it's comparing which of the two would do better versus a group of opponents, then there's absolutely no contest.
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  #485  
Old 11-30-2017, 09:49 AM
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Orlandu does come with Auto-Haste, so don't count him out just yet. Of course, if the Haste status existed in VH, Ash would be able to use it, but Orlandu never has to re-apply it.

More broken than the Calculator, though? Vandalier gives Calculator a run for its money, for sure, but I don't think it's a clear contest, since Calculator gets infinite range on every spell and doesn't have to worry about MP costs. The big advantage to Vandalier is that it could easily solo Worker 7. Good luck pulling that off with a Calculator.
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  #486  
Old 11-30-2017, 06:14 PM
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This question has made me think about how Ash and crew would fare against Ramza and crew. I think in general FFT characters can be more broken than VH characters but VH characters would hit hard against the FFT lower HP and have more HP compared to the damage that FFT characters can do. Also, the FFT team would be outnumbered by the VH team but the FFTers do have more reliable* lockdown methods.

*Maybe. I'm not sure how the mechanics of the two different games would mesh together.

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Hrm. It would entirely depend on positioning, I think! In a close-quarters slugfest, it'd be a stalemate at first, since Ash can completely heal himself to full every turn, but eventually Cid would get a Stop, KO, or Doom proc to stick and that would be it. That being said, Ash does have a pretty impressive movement range, so he'd probably be able to keep away from Cid, in which case he could burn him down in a few turns with infinite range Plasma Waves. And if they started out on opposite ends of a battlefield, then Cid would never ever get close.
Damage Split and Move+3 say hi.
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  #487  
Old 11-30-2017, 07:39 PM
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Heck, Item is all the FFT crew really needs. We haven't seen much death on JBear's side of the field, but I'm guessing there's no such thing as a stash of 99 Phoenix Downs. The lowly Chemist in FFT is already broken -- we don't need to break out the Chantage for this one.

There are several ways we can pit a relatively low-powered FFT unit against Vandalier Ash. If we assume Plasma Storm isn't reflectable, near-zero Faith will still stop it, so you'd only have to deal with Ash's melee attack and infinite regeneration. That calls for a Faith-independent lockdown solution, and what better than Mimic Daravon for that? Give our unit best compatibility with Ash and let one of the most derided skillsets in the game do its work. We'll still need to do damage without waking Ash, and with such a low Faith requirement, there's really only one woman for the job.

That's right: Rafa is our anti-Ash unit.

Reis would work too but is way less classy
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  #488  
Old 11-30-2017, 08:42 PM
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Heck, Item is all the FFT crew really needs.
True. Downs + Elixirs + all of the other potions is a lot of healing to have to burn through. But not an infinite amount.
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  #489  
Old 03-09-2018, 12:26 PM
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Hello there, everyone, and welcome back to Let's Play Vandal Hearts! Just to remind everyone what's going on: Ash drew the holy sword of legend, Vandal Heart, and then underwent the final Trial of Toroah to become the holy warrior of legend, the Vandalier. Then he broke the game in half, almost single-handedly storming Forth Gareth and finally putting Kane out of our collective misery, wiping up the remaining forces of the Crimson Guard in the process.

We join our heroes on the march back to the imperial capital of Shumeria, back where this all began, to put a stop to Dolf and his ambitions.

Oh, and before we get started, here's a reminder of a quote from earlier in the game that I'm sure will be of no importance and that you should probably just ignore:

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"He who wields it, if there be doubt in his heart, will be cursed. The wielder could become a puppet of evil, spreading pain... But you Ash... You could... You could do it..."


A "beach", apparently.



I think it was that large red person?

(I'm not sure why the game gives sprites for these lines, since I think the implication is that they're disembodied voices.)



Honestly, these scenes work better without the doofy Vandalier helmet, when you can see the anguish on Ash's face.



I mean, I'm pretty cool with that last one? That guy sucked.



Well this is embarrassing.



"No, really... I'm fine. It's nearly time for us to link up our forces with Clive."

Ash quickly changes the subject. I guess everyone is content to ignore the sudden unprompted shouting.



We should really find a scout or something. This just keeps happening.



Welcome to Cobalt Beach, the game's last filler battle. It only has a few of them, all told, so I'll forgive it. Also, it might well be the easiest battle in the game, even if you're not rocking a holy avatar of destruction.



There are 3 chests in plain sight, and a whole lot of boulders just begging to be rolled. Well, they can just keep on begging, because we're not touching them. Boulders don't give XP, after all, and I see a bunch of walking bags of XP on the other side of that hill.
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  #490  
Old 03-09-2018, 12:29 PM
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Darius kicks off the festivities by one-shotting this bat. Believe it or not, the four bats on the periphery (now three) are the most difficult opponents in this fight by a fair margin.



Dolan smashes open the closest chest and prepares to get chewed on by a bat.



Ash could, of course, solo this battle with a couple of Plasma Waves, but the last thing that he needs is more XP, and we don't need his help. He picks a nice spot on the top of the hill to watch from as the rest of the squad files in behind him.



Plan "counter-attack the bat" has hit a bit of a snag, as Dolan has been paralyzed (you can see the yellow text hiding behind that big 32). This might be a concern if he weren't a living wall of metal.



These boulders are talking!



Sara jogs back to help Dolan, who wastes no time in paying this bat back a favour.



Zohar is ostensibly softening up the enemy ranks with a salamander here, but trust me when I tell you that they are plenty soft already. He's just snagging some XP for himself so that the physical fighters don't hog it all.



I have a daring plan in mind, so Huxley tags Amon with a Mystic Shield before he charges right into the heart of the enemy formation. He also kills a dude while he's there, because why not?



The archers try to pick off a couple more from atop the hill, but then Darius has to go an make a liar out of me by leaving this one clinging to life.



I am pretty sure that this daring plan is perfectly safe, especially with Amon under the effects of Mystic Shield and standing on a prairie space, but I'm still a bit nervous, so I end the turn by having Diego move up and waggle his rear in hopes of drawing a bit of heat away from Amon.
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  #491  
Old 03-09-2018, 12:32 PM
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Here goes nothing!



lol





Yeah, I think we're fine.



One of the enemy soldiers obligingly strikes at Diego, and it has a bit more heft to it, but is still of no real concern.







So yeah, Amon is apparently a one-man army now, and this fight might be just a tad under-tuned. That said, it's fun to just run roughshod over the enemy forces once in a while!



More honeyed words from Kane.



Dolan lives here now. Wave goodbye to the LP audience, Dolan!




There were some enemies here. Now there aren't.



Amon rushes ahead and collects this rad-sounding axe! Shame that it doesn't have a rad image to match! It looks... thoroughly mundane.
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  #492  
Old 03-09-2018, 12:34 PM
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The enemy ranged units decide to make Diego their punching bag this time, since he's the most injured.



It kind of tickles.



Ash, I am increasingly convinced that you might not, in fact, be "fine".



You can still open a chest, though! Straight to the depot it goes!




I hope you didn't blink.



More money. Sure, why not?



Eleni finally says what everyone must be thinking.



This probably isn't good.



Ha, I like that last one. Good kid.





Um. This is probably also not good.
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  #493  
Old 03-09-2018, 12:35 PM
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Hi there...



You eyes seem... greener and... more glowy than I remember

If you compare those two shots, you might notice that his shield is also pulsing with a dim light that comes and goes.





Listen Ash, I know that the Sorcerers haven't been pulling their weight as much lately, but running her through with your glowing magic sword seems like a an overreaction.



Yes, Mr. Lambert, everyone's a traitor.



Clive just strolls on up by himself. Was he just watching the rest of us fight from the sidelines?



Ash seems to have some helpful suggestions about what we can do. Let's just table that for the moment...







Okay, fine, we'll talk about it now. Yeesh.



This is some very good advice.





Very good advice that Clive completely fails to take.



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  #494  
Old 03-09-2018, 12:38 PM
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It's not all bad news, though, as the sight of Clive bleeding out at his feet seems to have shocked Ash back to his senses.



Disagree!



Wait, is he blacking out or flashing back?



Phew.



Just to remind everyone, since it's been quite a while, Arris the Sage was the fellow who was credited in the game's intro with leading the revolutionary army that took down the monarchy and established the republic of Ishtaria, after which he mysteriously vanished.





This feels somehow familiar. But who is this dashing fellow?



It's Clive! Who... apparently remembered a bit of this scene before he showed up somehow? Look, that's not important. What is important is that Clive's goatee has apparently been hiding a handsomely square jaw.



"Listen to me Clive! This is part of a plan to ensnare Arris the Sage!"





We are then treated to a frankly ridiculous barrage of sword sound effects, followed by an over-the-top scream. It sounds like foley of six people simultaneously dicing a dozen watermelons with dull cleavers. I love it. Check it out for yourself!



"They were just using me to sabotage the new government... After I discovered the truth, I tried to make an announcement. But the person that deceived me had already been killed in the war... I said nothing for fear of derailing the peace process... And so the truth has not been spoken until this day..."



Looks like we're getting a death bed confession. It's not clear from the screenshots, but Clive's pretty much full body heaving here, struggling for breath. It's honestly pretty upsetting to look at!



I guess that, uh, won't be an issue any longer.



Although Zohar thinks it might not be too late?
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  #495  
Old 03-09-2018, 12:42 PM
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Huh. This genuinely surprised me on my first playthrough.



Um... he almost killed you too. I think he might have a point?



Oof, those eyes in that last shot, though. Eleni has no time for any of Ash's bullshit.



How about using concern for my squadmates?

(Seriously, though, we're proper fucked if Ash stays benched. Ignore me, Ash!)



Wait, what? What dying wish? Huh? The game has made no mention of this previously!



And I guess it's not going to now, because the conversation has moved on! I'm chalking this one up to a translation error either now or earlier, because no more mention is made of this supposed dying wish.



Then Ash plays the same ocarina solo that he played much earlier in the game. I made a gif this time!



He index fingers are like tiny metronomes.



And that's that! I guess we're to assume that Ash is no longer a risk to turn all demonic on us now that he's got his daddy issues sorted out. Let's hope so!

Speaking of daddy issues, if this game has a unifying theme, I think that might be it? So much of this game revolves around the conflicts that the various characters have with their fathers. First and most obviously is Ash, whose father died a traitor's death when he was a child, and who looked to Clive as a surrogate father. Then there's Eleni, who has no memory of her father (although we met her grandfather not long ago), but whose relationship with her adoptive father (General Magnus) drove much of the early game. Next is Diego, who was estranged from his merchant father, although that relationship looks to have been repaired somewhat after his father had second thoughts on killing all of us, so yay? And lest we forget, the main antagonists for much of this tale were a father and son pair, each of them jockeying to be the most awful.

Finally, well, there's at least one more prominent father-son revelation waiting in the wings before this story concludes...



We got a badass axe! I guess one reason to have at least one Dragoon around is so that we have someone to give it to!



This lets Dolan pull ahead of Clint a fair bit. In a world where God-King Ash didn't exist, that would be a pretty beefy AT score!



Well, we're finally here.

Next time:

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  #496  
Old 03-09-2018, 12:48 PM
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Um. This is probably also not good.
You can tell the game isn't built to factor the possibility of Ash being a Vandalier, because the next screen isn't the entire world cracking in half.
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  #497  
Old 03-26-2018, 01:17 PM
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Hello there everyone, and welcome back to Let's Play Vandal Hearts! When last we saw our heroes, they were on the march to the Imperial capital of Shumeria, to join up with the rebel army and hoping to put an end to the inexplicably apocalyptic ambitions of Dolf. To aid in that, Ash had recently acquired the legendary sword, Vandal Heart, and wielding it forced him to confront his inner demons, both figurative and literal, as he grappled with daddy issues. He was almost lost, but then was shocked back to reality when he ran his mentor and surrogate father, Clive, through with the sword. (He got better, though!) And, more importantly, Clive revealed to Ash the truth about his father, the man who had been branded a traitor but actually gave his life defending the man who gave birth to the Republic, Arris the Sage.

With a righteous heart finally free of doubt, Ash and his companions are finally about to set foot in the imperial capital and put and end to this crazy plan, this video game, and this Let's Play!



But... one little bit of house-keeping first.



I finally remembered to equip the sword that Kane dropped a couple of updates ago! It's a thoroughly mediocre upgrade, courtesy of a thoroughly mediocre human being. Now onwards to the capital!



Just like the last time we were here, the streets of Shumeria are crawling with Crimson Guard. But these guys in the purple are new...



Well, I don't approve of their public slaughter policy, but I do approve of their Crimson Guard killing policy...



One of the solider flees in our direction. Unlike every other soldier wearing that armour that's run at us with a sword, we don't attack this one.



"...holed himself up in the great temple 3 days ago. He said something... about a magic ceremony to destroy the rebel army... After that, powerful monsters appeared and nearly wiped us out! This country is finished!"



After giving his report, he continues running away without even waiting for us to respond. Always ready to kill the innocent, but also ready to flee at the first sign of actual trouble. The Crimson Guard, ladies and gentleman.



That sounds just bullshit enough to be plausible, Zohar!



Oh good, I've been looking forward to killing you. Incidentally, unlike his previous appearances, he didn't visible warp in or anything, so I guess he's just been patiently standing there this whole time?



"...to what heady heights a man may climb have he but the will and the power! Teacher, I'll not allow you to stop me from my dream!"

So, to summarize, Xeno is sort of person to break out unbearably pretentious dialogue at this juncture, and the sort of person who literally wants to watch the world burn just to see if someone can do it. So the very worst, in other words.



Two men enter, one man leaves.

Nah, we'll just be killing everything, like we always do.
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  #498  
Old 03-26-2018, 01:20 PM
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Welcome back to Shumeria! That's quite a lot of enemies! I'd almost be concerned, if I wasn't driving around an avatar of destruction.



Two conspicuous manholes means two hidden treasures. We won't be using either item, but I'll be damned if I'm going to stop just short of collecting the final two hidden items in the game.



Lots of new nasties for this battle, as well as the Dark Mages that we all know and love. The Mega Guards are just the latest golem upgrade, and the M. Cannons are their ranged equivalent. I love the cracked surface on both portraits.



You've gotta love how "Bahamut"s are just a regular enemy. "Hey, we need another cool-sounding dragon name!"



Xeno has a couple of new spells at his disposal. Hopefully he'll oblige us by casting both so that I can show them off! (Spoilers: he doesn't. A real jerk, right to the last.)



Now, if you're doing this battle normally, you'll want to slowly advance, picking off the enemies a few at a time, being careful not to move too far and trigger too many at once.



We have a Vandalier. We're not going to be doing this battle normally.



Since Ash is about to rudely wake up the entire battlefield, which includes entirely too many mages, I have the squad flatten themselves along the back wall.



I think we all know how this goes at this point.



Xeno and the mages (there's a mage recoiling in pain behind that Bahamut in the second shot) can weather the sorcerous storm without too much difficulty.




The rest of the battlefield, and the Mega Guards in particular, have a great deal more difficulty.
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Old 03-26-2018, 01:22 PM
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I know, Sara! I'm excited too! It feels like it's been years!



Squad dad Dolan lays down some battlefield wisdom.



So that happened. You all have as much information as I do here. Is this about marriage? Sex? Going steady? Maybe Sara is going to let Amon borrow her kick-ass tonfa.



The entire enemy formation advanced as far as they were able, but no enemy formation exists that can advance fast enough to stop a Vandalier. This second blast crippled every non-caster on the battlefield, and killed the Mega Guards outright.



It turns out that the casters aren't resistant to arrows, though.



Darius isn't able to reach any of the mages, unfortunately, but he and Grog take out their frustrations on a couple of Bahamuts. This is entirely unnecessary since my Sorcerers are about to start clean-up, but I wanted to splash a bit of XP around (although it hardly matters at this point).



Eleni wipes the battlefield clean of the remaining opposition in a fiery tide. There's not even anything left for Zohar to blast.



So he just stands behind her. I have all of our casters advance, in hope of drawing spells from the enemy mages. Everyone else continues to cower behind, since a concentrated barrage of spells could still easily take out one of our melee combatants.
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Old 03-26-2018, 01:23 PM
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The enemy mages oblige and ping Zohar and Eleni for negligible damage.



This lone remaining ranged attacker tries to snipe Ash from the other side of the fountain, but he's having none of it and blocks the shot with his shield.



Speaking of blocks, this Bahamut annoyingly blocks Sara's otherwise deadly counter-attack after lightly cooking her.



After that, Xeno finally wades in and joins the fray with a cast of a new spell.





He just tosses a glowy ball that condenses.



It hits a large area, but is otherwise not much stronger than the Dark Mages' spells. That said, don't take Xeno lightly-- this would do a great deal of damage to most of my other units, and his single-target spell might well be capable of killing Dolan outright.





All sorts of battlefield confessions happening today. Don't you folks ever talk on the march?
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  #501  
Old 03-26-2018, 01:25 PM
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A quick cast of Ultra Healing from Huxley is all it takes to complete erase the last enemy turn...




...and then we set about erasing the last enemies.



That cannon unit on the far side of the fountain is almost able to escape our wrath, but it's still in Salamander range, even though single-target attacks are not the most efficient use of the spell.



As a quick aside, it was at about this point that I noticed something that I'd never taken note of before: the chimneys have animated smoke rings rising out of them! You can see one to the left of this options menu at two different states as it rises. Delightful.



Oh, and there's still an evil warlock or something. Whatever. CHIMNEYS.



This is the last turn (only turn 4, for anyone keeping count), so it's time to go rooting through the sewers for phat loot before I end things. Sara throws another Gold Axe on the pile. I've never sold a single one of the game's items, by the way. We have overflowing coffers and a pile of unsold gold and rare ores.



Since Sara has nothing better to do, it occurs to me to show off a spell that I don't think we've seen. Mystic Energy boots a single character AT & DF for entirely too much MP.






It's purty to look at, though.



At the other manhole, Huxley digs up some robes that are identical to the ones that he's already wearing. Talk about bad mojo! rimshot
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Old 03-26-2018, 01:37 PM
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With that out of the way, it's time to end this. Darius quickly brings Xeno to within an inch of his life.



And then, because I think it's appropriate, we finish the fight with his teacher whacking him over the head with a stick.



It was a hell of a whack.

(Check out the rad broken-mask portrait.)



Xeno left his wand behind, which might be exciting if caster weapons in this game weren't all literally whacking sticks.



I am 100% tapped out of jokes to make about our money situation. We just have all of the money. All of it. I could never possibly spend it all, but the game keeps throwing more at us anyway.



Dolan looks genuinely despondent here. Just inconsolable over us killing some jerk warlock who was trying to bring about a literal apocalypse.



Grog knows what's up, and just hurriedly moves the conversation along.



Next time: The final battle! Please look forward to it!
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Old 03-26-2018, 01:38 PM
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Nah, I'm kidding. We're doing this shit right now! I've waited too long to put an end to this to put things on hold for another month! I've got a full head of steam and this Vandalier train ain't stopping for nothin'!

As you might expect, saying "Not yet" dumps you back to the world map for a last chance to visit the shops and what-not, but we're all ready to go now. Technically I've deprived you all of a shot of me equipping the Rune Wand, but it's a tiny incremental upgrade to one mage's physical attack strength, so you ain't missing nothing.



I never trusted that face. Not even once. Just look at him!



I think you just answered you own question, Ash.



I mean, that does sound pretty bad-ass...



Dun dun DUN.

I promised everyone one final twist, and one final daddy issue, and this is both!



I'm really going to miss those interoobanglipses.



"But he was used and thrown away like a lump of coal... His place in history was forgotten even as the people enjoyed the prosperity that was hard won with his blood! I vowed I would take revenge on those people who forgot him! It was then that I met Xeno and learned of the Flame of Judgement..."

So, in summary, Dolf is destroying everything that his father spent his life fighting for as a way to honour his memory. Seems like an evil mastermind might have given that one a bit more thought.



Dolf and Xeno: both huge assholes.



And both prone to pretentious turns of phrase.



You tell him, Ash!

"Though this world may be wicked, life itself is precious! Good and evil, love and hate. Each man contains the potential for both. You would exterminate mankind for their sins? I would fight the Gods themselves to save them!"



How to spot a villain 101: they say things like "sanctimonious whelp".



Spoiler: He can.
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Old 03-26-2018, 01:41 PM
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More than most fights, trying to end this one early by going straight after Dolf would be a very bad idea.



Welcome to the Great Temple, the site of our final battle! If you don't have a Vandalier, this fight can be pretty tough, as you're channeled up the middle through a long uphill slog as you're pelted with ranged attacks from all sides. Good thing that we have one!



Pfft, Dolf doesn't even have a weapon, or any attack magic. What's he going to do, hug us to death?



Everyone not named Ash fans out and flattens back. A couple are hunkering down behind torches to avoid ranged attacks.



Everyone named Ash nukes the entire map for ridiculous damage.





The enemy opens with a couple of long-range blasts at my Sorcerers.



I could have easily parked the rest of the squad out of range of everything, but I didn't want Ash to have all the fun. Besides, we've never seen these things attack!



First, holds out those weird glowing sticks horizontally.



Then it twirls them at me. It's hard to see the tiny number in that second shot, but it's 83, which is pretty beefy, and almost half of Clint's health bar.



His counter-attack reduces it to rubble.



I appreciate one last "nice" attack to close out the Let's Play.



Dolan seems somewhat less appreciative.
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Old 03-26-2018, 01:42 PM
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The Bahamuts file forward next to take their turn, and they're not yet weak enough to fall in a single blow. In fact, the second one blocks Dolan's counter-attack entirely.



It's nothing that the archers can't clean up, though.



Everything else files forward down the stairs, onto the killing floor. Let's clean this up, shall we?





We didn't even need Zohar's help. It's the start of turn 2, and the only enemies left alive are Dolf and a pair of dark mages.



Clint and Dolan move towards the centre, and Sara cozies up between them to unleash a Healing Wave.



We're not able to reach the enemy mages this turn, but I have the fliers advance on both flanks.





They each tag one of our sorcerers a second time, but there's nothing left to follow up on their efforts.



Even Dolf has thought better of this, turning tail and running back on to the dias.





Man, we really did a number on him, and we weren't even trying. This is just him healing collateral damage.



Diego and Amon clean up the mages to start turn 3, and now we're just down to Dolf.
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Old 03-26-2018, 01:45 PM
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Huxley drops an Ultra Healing down between the Sorcerers to get the full squad back to 100%, although it's hardly necessary.



Perfectly symmetrical formation is go!



I want to give my bank rank a chance to catch up, so I back up a bit and tighten the formation as Dolf advances down the stairs, still taking care to keep everything entirely symmetrical by class.



No, my symmetry! Dolf really is a monster.



This first exchange goes very much in our favour. Dolf ain't nothing.



OW. I WAS WRONG.

This is the kind of damage that Dolf can do to someone without a legendary suit of armor. And just to remind everyone, he is currently bare-handed.



Still, he's already down to 81 HP, so Dolan is able to finish him off without giving him a chance to counter-attack again.



Oh dear.



This seems sub-optimal.



Well, Dolf isn't bare-handed anymore! Now he's got a bunch of holy armaments of his own!



Two avatars of destruction, squaring off. Who will emerge victorious?





lol.

This is the final form of the game's final boss, and Ash almost just one-shot it, and then blocked the counter-attack.

Guys, have I mentioned that the Vandalier is broken? No? Guys, the Vandalier is broken.

It's kind of cool that Dolf can materialize his golden sword and shield out of thin air, I guess.



Sara, bring us home.



Music to my ears.

(And, again, check out the bad-ass death portrait.)



Lots of money that we don't need for killing Dolf. In fact, we got paid for it twice; once for each form! Now that's value!
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Old 03-26-2018, 01:46 PM
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Are you sure? He still sounds alive to me. Better give him a few more stabs, just to be sure.



"Revenge for your father. I understand you better than you know... But after revenge is taken, nothing remains but a painful scar... Dolf, you can begin again. With you genius you could do much to help rebuild this country."

Ash. Ash, buddy, no.



"Help this country?! You still do not understand... This country was headed for annihilation anyway! I am merely accelerating and purifying the means of its destruction..."

See, Ash? This guy sucks.



One last giant ellipsis for the road. Never change, Vandal Hearts.



Come again? You lost, bud. Go out with dignity.



Um.

Could you... could you not, though?






This seems bad.

On the plus side, Dolf is dead!
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Old 03-26-2018, 01:47 PM
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Our current plan seems to be to stand around and look at it.



Zohar, the alternative is a literal apocalypse. Try to keep things in perspective.





With a scream, Ash goes plunging into the explosion.








Um.



Good question!






Oh dear.


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Old 03-26-2018, 01:48 PM
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It's at this point that Vandal Hearts' famous ending theme, Burning Sorrow by Jadranka Stojakovic, cuts in. It's pretty good! You should all give it a listen.




Back to democracy! Everything will be better forever!








Uplifting.





We're treated to the character art from the instruction booklet drifting by at this point.

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Old 03-26-2018, 01:52 PM
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Character epilogues! Most of these feature entirely unnecessary animation. This one slowly pans around Dolan.



The credits for the game are interspersed with the character stuff. It's a nice way to end things.

Now that Burning Sorrow is finished, the audio switches to a nice medley of all of the game's other music.



Man, I could have had a mounted archer?




Clint: Still boring.




I am so sad that Deigo ended up behind a desk. The camera is steady for this shot, but it has an animated moth slowly flying from right to left.



This apparently doubles-up as Darius' ending, since we don't hear any more about him.




Man, a lot of these folks looks pretty unhappy with where they ended up! Sara's animation is the bakery logo going out of focus and her face comes into focus. Gotta love those 4 identical loaves of bad CG bread.




Man, yes! Apparently these two were having all of the fun for everyone else! When I first saw this, I thought I was looking at a sequel hook, and I was excited. I still kind of am! I would play the shit out of that! Regrettably, none of the sequels ever returned to this game's characters.



NERRRRRD




Ah, so it's Eleni that's been narrating. She's a few years older now, and has let her hair grow out!




It sounds like she's just as bored as everyone else.




The sound of a certain ocarina song that we last heard a couple of updates ago quietly drifts in.





And... scene.



That's it! The rest is left up to our imaginations! That said, it's pretty easy to put together what happened here. When Ash sealed the flames and disappeared, the vortex that appeared was identical to the one that swallowed him up and threw him to the end of time earlier in the game. And just like last time, he evidently returned a few years after he left. Honestly, it feels like a bit of a missed opportunity that the party never encountered an older version of Ash when we were there previously. Like, they could easily have modified the image slightly and teased something with this cloaked fellow at the bar.

All we're left with is this weird bad CG image of a couple of suits of armour holding comically large swords and facing some kind of venerated piece of wall with a rune on it. None of that seems obviously significant to me, but let me know if I've missed something!

We do get one extra tiny bonus, though, for having done all of the optional content unlocking the Vandalier:




I'm a master!

So, the take away here is that no one does the bonus stuff in Vandal Hearts because they want to unlock the secret ending. Cute touch, I guess, but in most games of the era, the expectation would have been an unlockable bonus scene where you actually get to see Ash and Eleni's reunion or something. Oh well.

And that's it! It's over! Join me in the next post for some wrap-up thoughts.
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