We’re going to go ahead and post this on August 8, Infinity Day. Turn the number eight on its side and you get the symbol for infinity. Nifty, isn’t it?
Previously on Wild Arms 3: Our intrepid Drifters crossed the land far and wide to find a clue for something to do. They eventually settled on helping some lost woman destroy an ambiguous magical artifact in random ruins.
Filled with monsters like these.
And puzzles that can be solved with bombs like this.
So fun fact: on the PS2 playthrough, I have not found a single migrant seal yet. If you are in this situation, at about this point in the game, monster encounters start eating off about a third of your ECN per cancelled fight. This means A. you should find migrant seals, and B. I’m going to be doing a lot of useless fighting. Not like I need the levels!
Treasure chests are frequently rigged to explode in this dungeon. Also beware of poison traps dropped by those insects from the tail end of the last update.
Hey! A door that requires a duplicator key! Let’s give it a try.
ARM upgrades ahoy!
The “reason” you unlock this treasure room is the Heart Leaf, which will prevent depression. Aside from wanting to dodge depression to make sure your party doesn’t blow all their gella on comfort chocolate, depression is also a status effect in Wild Arms 3 that is basically mute. Magic and special actions are fueled by force points, and depression apparently means you are too sad to use any force. I wonder if this ever comes up in the Star Wars universe…
This dungeon is mostly boring hallways punctuated with the occasional trap/puzzle. So it is a Wild Arms 3 dungeon.
There is a switch at the end of a narrow bridge and two pendulums. Hm…
Approach the switch, and Claudia will interrupt your stroll at what is a most inopportune location.
She pulls the switch…
And you better move out of the way fast. She was just trying to help, right?
Typical architecture here: one doorway is a treasure room, the other is the way forward.
Always enjoy a treasure room.
Or don’t, because one of the treasures is our first “overworld” trapped chest.
It’s a mimic! The bane of adventurers for decades!
Mimics are not all that special in Wild Arms 3. No instant death attacks, or special tricks to “stealing” treasure, or whatever…
But they do hit hard…. Er… Uh… Let’s look at that in a game where we haven’t cheated to Level 99….
There we go. That mimic used its typical physical attack, and Clive was knocked dead for more than his maximum HP. Note that Clive has the second highest HP count in the party.
Anywho, Mimics are a pain at this point in the game, but quickly become out-leveled when they appear in later dungeons. This is probably the most difficult Mimic fight in the game if you tackle it specifically when you first arrive.
And, for the record, your reward is a pair of duplicators. That is worth a thousand dead Clives!
Plodding right along.
Quick puzzle. It hasn’t been required yet, but Jet’s boomerang will “fall” when hitting a wall. So hit the wall over the switch, and the boomerang will drop onto the switch, opening the nearby door. This happened, like, a thousand times in Wild Arms 2.
Oh! That’s that bug thing using its poison attack. You want to bring a lot of antidotes to this dungeon, because these bee dudes are everywhere.
Then again, they are likely to keep you stocked…
Well this room looks like fun. Probably not a good idea to touch that psychedelic muck down there.
Just gonna stand there next to the switch until we walk over and talk to you, eh?
She steps on the switch… and you know what happens next. Note that walking is not enough here (as you can see), you must break into a sprint if you don’t want to wind up in the toxic, health-draining drink.
Always a reasonable excuse with some people…
In case that trap really did you in, the next room has VIT-restoring gems.
Claudia has nothing to do with this one! Hit the switch to proceed in this room, and these marching blocks will attempt to push you into a pit. Use a bunch of bombs really fast! Or don’t, and you’ll just have to repeat the room after regrettably dropping into a hole.
Proceed a little further, and we’ll find a block that does not react to literally any tool we have in our repertoire. Guess we will come back later.
I’ll get past you one day, door!
This is like the bomb puzzle at the front door (see the beginning of this update), but with double the targets.
Drop your bombs between the pyramids, and all will be well.
Next area requires a quick boomerang switch.
If you think Claudia "leaving" the party is a good thing, I have got some NFTs to sell you.
Woman, every time you open your mouth, we get smashed or poisoned.
Stabbed. That was the one trap we were missing here. Despite Claudia claiming the path is safe, you must dash through here to be fine.
And we are at… wherever here is supposed to be. It’s an end.
This is not her goading you into a trap so much as being generally unnerving.
You are supposed to touch that gem next to Claudia, but attempting to leave will get a “but thou must” from the leader. Different party members offer different comments…
And some are thicker than others.
Finally taking the gem will generate some beam trap that will slice over another chunk of HP. This trap appears to be unavoidable, but you can snag that gem without harm if you slide your character a little over to the right before hitting X. I don’t know if this is intentional…
The artifact is going to be inside an iron maiden, isn’t it?
Clive has had enough (lasers to the face).
“Which death trap tipped you off?”
At least two party members thought this was a trick from literally the start of this…
“It occurred to me sometime around when we were pulling spears out of Gallows’s butt.”
There was other evidence! You’re not good at this!
So Purple Lady was possessing Claudia! And Gallows has the least appropriate/best reaction!
OH SNAP. CLIVE NO YOU DIDN’T.
Is that a “blade you wielded” pun?
Oh! Clive with the cutting commentary.
Lady, you are talking to the single most stylish member of our party. Our distant second place contender went to get a burger and got mistaken for The Grimace.
Clive gonna get afterschool special on yo ass.
Clive! What the heck?! We thought Virginia was your metaphorical daughter! Nobody knew you had a literal daughter!
Robed Woman does not take rejection well.
That’s gonna be a boss fight.
So this is a bit of an amusing one.
No advantages for you here, just four against one.
Robed Woman will attack Clive and only Clive. She is pissed, and Clive is going to bear the brunt of her Eliminate Scanner. As long as you keep Clive alive and healthy, she’ll just keep hitting him. After Clive dies, however, she will switch to a more powerful attack called Inhalator, and will likely wipe out the rest of the party in short order.
So just have Virginia keep Clive awash in heal berries, and have everybody else attack. If Clive goes down, let Jet accelerate and use a reviving item.
And that should do it. Her traps were more deadly than she could ever be.
There is no way “Panakeia” isn’t a mistranslation of “Panacea”. In WA3, Panakeia is this mystical (well, technically scientific) goop that keeps these goobers alive. We’ll hear more about it later.
And she teleports away… Or… not. Apparently we beat her so bad, she can’t get away.
But she can still possess the unconscious Claudia!
Come to think of it: was there ever a reason Robed Woman needed Claudia as part of this plan at all? Like, no one met either woman before this point, so the whole “helpless damsel” routine would have worked with just, “oh help I’m a scared lady in robes in these big scary ruins.” You were overthinking it, Robed Woman.
Anywho, away she goes.
And why did she reveal herself a moment ago, too? Can she only use her powers when she is in full purple-mode?
Right. Right. Overthinking it. Let’s just follow her.
Maybe save before heading through that door, as we have an old friend ahead of us.
Janus has the same complaint about Robed Woman as Slickster last update. Does he genuinely believe this, or just saw how that comment got under her skin before?
Janus is happy to see us, though.
Face says angry, but emote says happy to see you’re alive.
Legally, if you are a ghost, you have to tell someone you’re a ghost. It’s one of those boo laws.
And then Janus gets crushed by a giant falling rock. Again.
Or he activated his morpher just in time.
Flashback to between the seconds to illustrate exactly what happened in the coolest way possible.
Janus “Lovecraftian Horror” Cascade.
Weird thing I will note: Janus is wearing his exact same outfit as a Sahagin. Except! For reasons that cannot be explained by science, his shirt has now become a belly shirt, and he is showing off a little scale-ab there. The jacket comes down to the same point on his model, so it’s not just because he got a little more mass up top. This tells us one thing: the designers of Wild Arms 3 were horny for mer-folk.
But the party does not care for our fishy friend.
This was the same “oh no” effect from when the spear appeared back at Ka Dingel. Guess Janus is our first for-real demon in the game… Or at least his weapon is…
Or his soul? Someone’s soul? Whatever. It is a bad sign when gods don’t like something.
Woo! Front row seats to the apocalypse!
Let’s get up close and personal.
We’ve never fought Janus before!
So there is a very particular pattern to this fight. On one round, Janus will use Negative Rainbow. Under normal, non-powered up circumstances, this would deal major damage to the whole party.
But then you’ll learn the trick of this fight.
Janus religiously switches between Negative Rainbow one round, and then a simple physical attack the next. So if you defend literally every other turn, you will be safe.
There’s that Soulcalibur. Janus apparently lost his ARM in our final human battle, so none of his old techniques appear at all. Also fun bit of trivia: Janus was previously using moves that belonged to Ashley of Wild Arms 2, but is now using Negative Rainbow, which was the super attack of Zeikfried/Siegfried of Wild Arms 1. It’s kind of funny, as Janus now has even more in common with Ashley, a dude that was secretly possessed by a final boss and could transform into a different, more powerful “demon” form. So I’m sure this Siegfried connection is just a coincidence.
And either as a concession to this being the second boss fight in the dungeon, or as a storyline “excuse” that will be stated shortly, Janus doesn’t have that much HP for a boss battle.
It is over quickly, and Janus will take the typical sore loser stance of blaming it all on lag.
The Baselard is an accessory that will give one character the ability to “cancel” a movement without an FP cost. This could be useful on your chosen emergency healer.
Oh. The whole thing wasn’t just an elaborate trap. There really was a reason Robed Woman wanted to get through these ruins.
Robed Woman still wants blood, but Janus of all people cautions against further violence. Janus!
“Lemme have a little fight. As a treat.”
Janus, did cowardice come with your new gills?
Oh, typical villain motivation of wanting closure. Now it all makes sense.
Janus continues to be the bane of all human resource departments.
Somebody finally got their teleporter working.
Oh. Claudia. Right.
Guess we were in there for a while. Time for a quick campout.
“You’re a dad? Funny story: I hate dads.”
“Oh no! Janus has gained all the powers of a demon, and is going to destroy the world. Apropos of nothing, my wife would hate that.”
“The other day, I found a bonus heal berry in my cereal. And Clive here has a wife and kid. Will wonders never cease?”
Janus is alive/fishy.
He tried to kill you all, so he is still the same on the inside.
I do appreciate that the guardians don’t seem to have a clue on how to communicate to the party beyond general vibes. Makes sense for eternal gods that reside in some kind of other dimension.
Janus gets no respect…
“A medium is kinda like a vehicle or a go-between…We’re all connected to the guardians by it. So the fear expressed through the medium is that of the guardian’s, and…the guardians represent the power of Filgaia. Which means that whatever scares the guardians, is a threat to the planet itself. And from what we know, there’s only one thing that threatens this planet…”
Virginia cannot hide her enthusiasm at fighting real mythological monsters.
And, if you haven’t noticed, there isn’t exactly an army of powerful humans ready to meet a demon threat head on…
“So, this is why we were entrusted with the mediums and let loose over Filgaia! I turned my back on my lineage and destiny of priesthood so that I could be free…But all I’m doing is playing a part in Granny’s whole scheme!”
Her “whole scheme” is a “plot” to save the world, so maybe you could be a little less egocentric about it.
“Face” is a relative term here.
I understand feeling manipulated by a controlling family member, I really do. But, ya know, world saving.
Oh! The mediums heard us talking smack, and started glowing.
The glow shoots into the sky and off in some direction. Guess we have a lead on our next mission.
How about “go southeast”.
Yeah, it sucks being a videogame protagonist. Go have a Bioshock about it.
“I think it was partly fate that brought us together in the wasteland. And I’m really grateful for it. But the thing is, I don’t want to entrust every decision to it. What I trust more is you guys–the bond we share together. And the mediums are a bond that connects us with Filgaia. I want to trust this bond and take action.”
Let’s trust mystical gods trying to save the world! Not strange women in ruins!
“You guys, I really want to fight a demon so bad!”
We were kind of aimless after we thought Janus was dead, but now that we have a Janus to fight…
And here is our flimsy excuse for why we don’t recruit maybe at least one other person with an ARM to defend the planet.
Has she been unconscious this whole time? Should somebody check into that? A doctor? Have we seen a doctor outside of Clive’s opening?
I’ve played JRPGs before, Clive.
Apparently we walked a little bit from the ruins for that little rest, and we’ll take Claudia home next update. And after that, I am going to guess “southeast” is in our future…
Next time on Wild Arms 3: One game’s unstoppable super boss is another game’s speedbump.