Both Anya and Byakuya routes are now finished, so I can finally move on to the third and final route, the Invisible Kingdom. This route wasn't added to the game until a couple weeks after release - when you choose it, it warns you that you're meant to have played both the other routes first to enjoy it properly. I paid another 2000 yen to unlock it, bringing my total for this game to 8460 total. I really wonder how this whole DLC thing is going to go over in the west. Anyway, I spent way too long trying to design a new Kamui for the last route, but couldn't find anything I liked, so I ended up just choosing the same male Kamui design I used in Anya. I really can't stand any of the other haircuts for him. I made his secondary class Knight, since I figure I may need the defensive skills. Difficulty is Hard + Classic (permadeath), I really want to try sticking with it this time since I have some practice with the game now.
So let's hop right back in at the decision point in Chapter 6. The Anya and Byakuya siblings all call out to Kamui to join them, and Kamui explains that he can't betray either of them. The Anya royalty are his raised siblings and he considers them family, and his Byakuya siblings are his real family and pretty cool folks too. Ryouma and Marx won't take his waffling for an answer though, and a battle breaks out between the two sides over who gets to take Kamui home. Kamui looks on while his siblings from both countries fight each other and wants to get them to stop - Aqua walks on over to him and proposes a plan. God damnit, we are not listening to another of Aqua's plans, we saw how that turned out in the Anya route. Well, her brilliant plan this time is that we should attack some regular soldiers from both the Anya and Byakuya armies - that way our siblings would have to stop fighting each other and pay attention to us. Really, Aqua? REALLY? Yes, really. We are really doing this. Felicia shows up on the battlefield and frantically asks Kamui and Aqua which army we're attacking, we tell her 'both', much to the poor maid's surprise. We attack both sides, and not surprisingly, it ends with both Ryouma and Marx yelling at us about how we've betrayed their country and will be killed on sight if we show our faces again while we run for our lives.
If all your friends jumped off a bridge, would you jump too? Kamui's answer is yes. With nowhere to go and being wanted outlaws in both Anya and Byakuya, the three of them decide to believe Aqua when she tells them that there's a special safe place they can go to, and all they have to do to travel there is jump off a bridge that hangs over an endless cliff. She can't tell them more than that, just 'trust me'. Well, in for a penny, in for a pound, right? Kamui agrees, and poor Felicia also follows behind as the three of them jump headfirst off a bridge. They fall for what seems like miles until they teleport completely safely into a mist-filled grassy area, which Aqua reveals to be the Invisible Kingdom. You can't speak about the Invisible Kingdom outside its borders or else you'll evaporate, which is why she couldn't tell them specifics earlier.
The ruling king of the Invisible Kingdom is named Hydra - this is the god King Garon was praying to all the time in the Anya route, if you recall. Aqua's father was the previous king before Hydra killed him, and her mother is a woman named Shenmei - again, we learned in Byakuya route that she was Garon's second wife. So now it makes sense why Aqua acted weird in both routes when Elise called her sister - she's not blood-related to any of the Anya royalty through her father or mother, she's actually the rightful princess of the Invisible Kingdom. Hydra has been turning the people against each other and brought the kingdom to ruin, and now he's pulling the strings outside in Anya and Byakuya too in order to destroy those countries as well. Our conversation gets interrupted by some of the ghostly warriors attacking us, and we meet Gunter, who also ended up here from when Ganz dropped him off the same bridge we jumped off of. He's glad to see us, and joins up.
We resolve to get Anya and Byakuya to work together to focus on the real threat of King Hydra in the Invisible Kingdom, but there's a major problem - like mentioned earlier, you are not able to speak of the Invisible Kingdom while outside it or else you'll die. So they have to try to convince both sides to trust them without explaining the reason. Also, there's a time-limit: we only have until the next time the skies change. It seems that every few dozen years, the dark skies over Anya and the bright skies over Byakuya switch sides, and at that time the entrance to the Invisible Kingdom opens and closes. We head towards Byakuya first to try our luck there, and run into the top general, Yukimura. He is incredibly not happy to see us and doesn't believe us for a second - it seems that in the chaos after Kamui ran away, Ryouma went missing and Takumi got taken captive by Anya. A fight ensues and we beat them down without killing them to get us to listen, but Ryouma's ninja retainer Saizou is still pissed and tries to self-destruct to take everyone out with him. Suzukaze and Sakura run in and stop him, saying that they believe Kamui, and they calm things down. We tell them to meet up for some cliff-diving by the bridge on the given sky-changing date if they choose to believe us and we head off, with Suzukaze and Sakura joining our party.
Next up is an almost completely re-used scene from Byakuya route where we attack some Nosferatu and they end up being people from the wind tribe - again, it's the Anya royal advisor Macbeth's doing, and again we go fight the wind tribe to test our strength and convince the village elder, same as last route. Rinka joins up with us here, helping convince Fuuga that we're not lying, since she's the daughter of the fire tribe's chieftain. Fuuga sends us off with the brat Tsukuyomi again, and we head off towards the neutral country of Izumo to learn more about Kamui's sword - the wind village elder Fuuga mentioned that it is said to 'even be capable of killing a god', so maybe it can work against Hydra. Oh good, I was worried I might end up playing a JRPG that didn't involve killing any gods for a minute here.
Hard Mode + Classic is going alright so far - it forces you to be very careful. Unlike Anya route though, I can grind as much as I want, so there's no danger of realizing you built the wrong characters or one of them hogged too much experience, so I'm just taking things slow and making sure to raise everyone I can. We recruited Lv.1 peasant girl Mozume again (she's recruitable in all three paths near the beginning) and I've been raising her into a bow-user, she's actually ridiculously strong if you take the time to level her up thanks to her unique skill that gives her higher growth rates. Right now she and Kamui are my main sources of firepower while the other support them - with endless grinding I can go pop out the child characters for any of the men in my party whenever I want to, I'll try to do that when I can so I can give some of the ones I never tried before a shot.
Random JRPG blogging about the games I'm currently playing.