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  -Part 1 :: [02.13.02]
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"So now the gang is smaller than ever and stuck in this abandoned castle, South Window is enemy territory, soldiers from South Window are being forced to fight for Highland (according to Apple) and Barry still can't get any. The situation is truly dire."
     -Sam, Suikoden II Part 7




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Chrono Cross : Part 3
By Jeanne
Posted 07.15.02
Pg. 1 : 2 : 3
It's been over four months since I last wrote a Chrono Cross recap, so forgive me if I've forgotten what was going on. As far as I recall, our scantily clad friend Steve was going to help Cronabe break into Viper Mansion. The reason escapes me, but it must not be that important if I don't remember it.

According to the guide, there are three different paths to get into the mansion, and the one you choose determines what characters you can get during the game. Yes, I know that's such an incentive to choose the right path -- the characters are just so interesting.

I decided to go with the path nearest and dearest to my own heart -- the one that involves the makeup-wearing, transvestite-ish rock star, Nikki. Cronabe, Gandy, and Biotch head over to his ship, where, as before, no one can find him. Just then, Miki, the jiggling dancer walks in the door and announces that she also lost Nikki. He went into the creatively-named Shadow Forest and Miki couldn't follow him in because of the knights guarding the entrance. "Besides, I really didn't want to be in that creepy forest on my own," Miki tells us, because we couldn't figure out the exact creepiness quotient from the name of the forest. They beat us over the head some more with the fact that Nikki is, indeed, in the Shadow Forest which, indeed, leads to Viper Manor.

Hey, let's annoy Jeanne by playing the 'damsel in distress' card again!
 

I have a feeling that my party members, who are unknown to everyone there and have no business whatsoever being backstage, will randomly be asked to help. It turns out that I'm right. I guess there's something inherently trustworthy about mute teenagers and pink gay dogs. Miki says that she'll distract the guards so Cronabe and Co. can sneak into the forest and find Nikki. Oh, what a devious plan.

Cronabe and the others head over to Shadow Forest. There's no cutscene of Miki distracting the guards, but perhaps that's just as well. The forest is dark (duh) and creepy (duh) with lots of enemies (duh) and treasure chests (duh), and ethereal music in the background (duh). Hey, I just thought I'd describe it. It's not my fault they made it clichéd.

After traveling through the forest a bit, Cronabe and Co. stumble upon a strange man facing off against a weird yellow octopus thing. The game designers tried to fool us by labeling the strange man as "Man", but we're smart enough to know he's Nikki. He wants the yellow octopus to listen to his song, which goes "Ohhh oooh oooh...Sweet sister of mine...." Get it? Hell, even I get what it's a parody of, and I'm about the least knowledgeable pop music person in the entire world. The yellow octopus fails to respond, which annoys Nikki. "Dammit! It's hopeless....," he says. Then he jumps up onto a ledge and runs into the next screen -- I mean, into the next part of the forest.

When Cronabe and the others follow him, they find Nikki cornered by these two weird-looking demon guys with spears. Nikki says "Dammit! I can't fend them off alone...." and lucky for him, there are some random people standing nearby to help them. That would be Cronabe and friends, in case you haven't been following. The spear guys keep swinging their spears at Nikki as Cronabe and the others approach. It's probably one of those deals where you could just stand there indefinitely and nothing would ever happen, but I decide not to test that theory.

Nikki actually helps out in the fight.....with his guitar. Well, if Biotch can use a frying pan, I don't see why a guitar would make any less sense. After the battle, Nikki says nothing. He just jumps off the ledge into the stream and walks into a cave behind a waterfall. I mean, it makes sense. A yellow octopus doesn't respond to your song, you get attacked by spear-wielding demon men, you're saved by a couple of teenagers and a large pink dog -- what else can you do but go into a cave behind a waterfall.

Poor Gandy is slower than the rest of us. "Who'th that...?" she wonders. Cronabe, Gandy, and Biotch follow Nikki into the cave. In addition to our favorite makeup-wearing rock star, there is another octopus-like creature -- this one blue.

Gandy is fed up. "The reatht you could do ith thank uth!" she bitches. Ha ha -- get it? She's a FEMALE DOG and she BITCHES? Oh, never mind. Nikki proves he has the qualifications to work for the psychic hotline when he asks, "You're off to the Viper Manor, right? Take me with you." Gandy finally figures out who he is because of a poster she saw in Termina. Try TEN MILLION POSTERS in Termina. Poor slow gay dog. Nikki wants to get into Viper Manor because he thinks his sister is there. I don't know if this is supposed to be a big revelation or not, but we don't really care. Nikki offers to tell them a secret if they allow him to join the party. A secret, huh? How could I say no to that? "Rockin'!" Nikki says when Cronabe accepts his offer, because he's a rock star and stuff.

Remember how we all (including the less intelligent among us) figured out who this random guy in the forest was? Well, he just now announces that he's "the rockin' bard, Nikki!" Wow, I feel so smart now. He asks if Cronabe wants to hear a song, and all the choices are variations on "no". Nikki is upset. Get used to this -- it's a running joke.

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