Suikoden : Part 5
1 : 2 : 3 : 4
You may wonder why on earth PUGGY!!! needs yet another blacksmith. Well, each one can only sharpen the weapons to a certain limit. So the matching gay blacksmiths get progressively less sucky in order of recruitment. I guess the game designers were trying to prevent someone from sharpening the crap out of the weapons as soon as the first blacksmith is recruited. But still, you have to admit that the concept of matching gay blacksmiths is pretty silly.
As in the Village of the Elves, PUGGY!!! makes his way to the biggest house to talk to the village chief. You can tell this guy is important by his long, curved horns and his thick, bushy beard. Um...not the same kind of beard as Linkolas has. He also has a character portrait for some reason. He seems surprised to find humans and elves "hand in hand" and I guess I would be surprised, too, if it weren't Linkolas and Gremio.
Linkolas asks the Chief of the Dwarves for a favor. The chief makes a sarcastic reply, so Valeria uses her assets to try to further the conversation. She asks if the chief has ever heard of the Burning Mirror. As it just so happens, the Burning Mirror is a dwarven treasure. "[Kwanzaa] Rosman has gotten hold of the blueprint, and is planning to burn down the forest," Valeria explains calmly. "Ho ho! That's very funny. I hope all the elves are killed. Ho ho!" the chief laughs. I would call him a dick, but I think the elves pretty much asked for it here. For some reason PUGGY!!! and the others still want to help them. I guess they're just more
stupid noble than I am. Linkolas practically throws a tantrum over this. "Besides, do you expect me to believe that one of you sluggish humans really succeeded in stealing a blueprint from us?" the chief scoffs. I get that the dwarves are supposedly all that and a bag of chips when it comes to technological inventions, but how fucking hard is it to figure out how to build a giant mirror? Blueprints, my ass.
But in this moronic universe, the only way Kwanzaa could possibly have accomplished this terrible task is to indeed have filched the plans from the dwarves. "It's true. A fellow called Kage stole the blueprint," Valeria insists. What are the chances that some other ninja thief could be named Kage? It has to be the same guy as before! Only working for the Imperials this time, because he's one of those rare ninjas who work for whoever has the coin. The only way the dwarf chief will believe that this Kage fellow -- a stupid, oafish human -- broke into the vault is if PUGGY!!! and the others break into the same vault and bring back an item.
The item in question is a "Running Water Root," a creative name for a fake penis. Gremio can't wait to get his hands on it, though he'd much rather break into PUGGY!!!'s vault. So at least this little side trip won't be in vein...I mean vain.
|'So we had to build that penis statue out in the country.'
The party leaves the village and heads north to the vault. It looks like a bank vault set into the side of a mountain, for those of you less perceptive folks. The door is not locked, and just inside, a single guard blocks access to the staircase. "The Chief has filled us in. This vault can't be opened by a stupid elf," he scoffs...right before he steps aside. Wow, I can totally see how hard it is to break into this vault -- it would clearly take a team of skilled professionals.
PUGGY!!! descends four staircases, fighting random battles all the way. In the next room, he finds himself face-to-face with three levers. Pulling them makes certain blocks open on the path forward. I'm sure this puzzle would be so hard to solve, but what the dwarves don't realize is that PUGGY!!! has in his sweaty little hands a magical item known as the Parchment of Mystical Foresight. Or as us mundanes call it, a GameFAQs walkthrough. This allows him to pull the levers in just the right order -- which happens to be in order from left to right. PUGGY!!! feels gypped. He hopes no one sees the way his hands linger just a little too long on the hardened shafts, but the ever watchful Gremio can't help but notice. And daydream a little.
After descending three more sets of stairs, PUGGY!!! finds himself in a maze. Curses! Except that it's fairly straightforward. I mean, cripes, if I can find my way through a maze without needing the guide, you know any old moron can do it. PUGGY!!! becomes uneasy at the obscenely simple "puzzles" and wonders if perhaps his magical parchment has left out some truly horrible ordeal, like a room where they must have sex with women to pass.
Out of the maze, PUGGY!!! sighs as he finds yet more stairs. The dwarves probably think their vault is safe due to thieves dying from tediousness. But he and Gremio are determined to
play with retrieve that pesky Running Water Root so that they can probe each other save those wonderful and kind elves from burnination.
I don't feel like counting the staircases, so let's just say that PUGGY!!! went down fifty billion. His next "ordeal" is a room with numerous floating platforms that don't always go where you would expect. There are, like, eight platforms, so again with the half-assedness. Stairs, stairs, stairs. Another fucking maze. Christ. At least in FFX-2, you can tell why most of the areas (not to mention everything else) are thrown together -- more time to program the boobies. What is Suikoden's excuse for this crap?
|What is Suikoden's excuse for this crap?
At last, PUGGY!!! reaches a chamber with two switches, eight oversized LEDs, and a stone tablet that reads -- and I kid you not -- "Fiddle dee diddle dee piddle dee doo." I have no God damn clue what this has to do with solving the puzzle. The words "piddle" and "doo" may simply indicate the contents of the game designers' skulls. Luckily, PUGGY!!! doesn't have to lose his mind trying to find some sort of meaning in this, as he simply consults his magical parchment in order to figure out how to light up the LEDs in order. When he does, the locked vault door opens. Victory!
PUGGY!!! steals the remainder of the treasure in the vault before heading forward to find...more fucking stairs. Cait Sith in a cardboard box. After what seems like an eternity, PUGGY!!! reaches the dungeon boss. Hey, where's my damn save point? The game designers forgot it back on the mountain, I guess. Assholes.
The boss is named Gigantes, which would likely arouse PUGGY!!!, Gremio, and Linkolas, except for the fact that it's two upper bodies, joined at the waist, thereby missing all the good bits. One half is a buff old man, and the other is, of course, a bright purple demon. Luckily for the game designers' well-being, this dude goes down faster than a drunken Gremio at a Penis Castle men's-only party. Gigantes is the last remaining obstacle to the Running Water Root...except for more stairs. I kid. If there were more stairs, I wouldn't be finishing this recap, as I would be locked in a padded cell screaming about green bandanas and evil dice games.
PUGGY!!! wraps his hands around the long, flesh-colored root, then walks forward and retrieves the item out of the treasure chest. To save what remains of my sanity, I use an Escape Talisman rather than retrace my steps back through the vault. Just thinking about what would happen if I didn't have an Escape Talisman in my inventory is enough to haunt my dreams for the next month.
Back in the Village of the Dwarves, they return to the chief's house to rub his face in their victory. Since he's not a complete and utter dickweed, he grudgingly agrees to help them. It just so happens that the dwarves have another secret treasure that can destroy the Burning Mirror. It's called the Firewind Cannon. And if it's a giant ass that blasts rancid gas, I'm turning off this game. Although the cannon is greatly treasured by the dwarves, it doesn't actually exist yet. See, if it actually existed -- which would make sense -- they could use it to avert tragedy right this second, and no one would end up aaaaaaaangsting. Then it wouldn't be a Suikoden game. But I'm getting ahead of myself again.
For some unexplainable reason, Linkolas thinks that Tom will believe his story now. Why? Why would he think that? What possible sense does that make? They got the dwarves, who the elves hate and mistrust, to build a cannon. Wow, that'll sure convince him! Especially since they have no proof beyond their word, which he was so willing to believe before. But I can't move the story along unless I follow Linkolas's retarded suggestion, so with my eyes rolled into my cranium, I head back to the Dwarf Trail.
PUGGY!!! doesn't get very far into the mountains before some "Fuck! We're All Dead!" music starts up. To the west, they see a still background wallpaper of a burning forest and a red sky. Since this is a Suikoden game, I'm quite surprised that we made it this far without someone burning the crap out of something. Gremio and Valeria are all, "DURR! What is that?" because they have the brains of a walnut. A few moments later, the party realizes that it's Linkolas's village. The humans all try unsuccessfully to act like they're upset. Linkolas simply breathes, "Too late," although I'm suspicious that he is saving up for a huge drama queen tantrum later.
The group gets to wind their way back through the Trails of Vomit. When they reach the Village of the Elves, the previously green tree is now completely charred. I know it's supposed to be all tragic and crap, but it kind of makes me snicker. Speaking of humor, the little pop-up window that appears whenever PUGGY!!! enters an area now reads "Burnt village of the Elves." That's comedy gold right there. I don't think that was the game designers' intention. Although the little village avatar showed the entire tree, albeit blackened, the only remaining portion of the tree in the village proper is a burnt stump. Broken buildings lie scattered about and the rope ladder is in disarray.
Valeria and Gremio make some more empty statements about how horrible this is. No one buys it. "Our efforts were…" Valeria begins. Linkolas can hold in the drama no longer. "That's right. In vain. All of our efforts were in vain." He throws his arm over his face with a flourish. "But why? Why? Please tell me, Master PUGGY!!!. What good were our efforts? Why did this happen? We did our best! I was insulted and abused, but I fought on. And yet…yet…" I recapped that verbatim because I was sure you wouldn't believe me about the level of drama otherwise. Sweet freaking lord. Even Gremio starts to tell Linkolas to get off the cross because he needs the wood, but Linkolas isn't done with his pity parade.
He holds out his spritely hand with something sparkly in it. "When everything was over, I planned to give this ring to Sylvina," he whines. Now everyone knows he's totally playing it up. "Now this ring has no hand to adorn. It's useless now." He throws it on the ground, hoping that everyone is totally feeling sorry for him and will leave 500 comments in his whiny livejournal entry in the near future.
Incidentally, if I don't sound absolutely thrilled over Sylvina's demise, that's only because I know the game designers are going to muck it up for me. And I don't despise her enough to delude myself, unlike other game characters that the fucking game designers CAN'T LEAVE DEAD.
|'We must never again forget to buy lube.'
Gremio cannot resist the sight of such a fabulous and sparkly piece of jewelry just lying in the dirt. Unable to control himself, he rushes forward to pick it up. Linkolas glares at him for stealing his thunder, but Gremio doesn't get the hint. Desperate to one-up Linkolas's drama, he solemnly states, "[Linkolas], this ring is your hope. And you must never give up hope. With just a little bit of hope, you can survive, live on. And that goes for humans as well as elves." Some "inspirational" Yanni music swells in the background. Suddenly, the rest of the party bolts toward the Dwarf Trail to add to the vomit. Gremio and Linkolas have a little moment. Just as they're about to kiss, PUGGY!!! loudly clears his throat. Gremio is all, "Uh…let's go back to Penis Castle." He also says something inane about preventing any further tragedies. Yes, there will be no more tragic incidents in the Suikoden series. Ever.
With one final promise to follow through on destroying Kwanzaa Rosman's genocidal ass, Gremio finally shuts up. And that's as good a place as any to end this recap. Next time, PUGGY!!! faces off against the first of the Great Generals. That would be Kwanzaa, in case you weren't following. Will PUGGY!!! win or will this be the shortest video game ever? It's a cliffhanger!