Things are finally starting to look up a bit for Kamui, and word is getting around Anya Kingdom that he's different from the normal royals. The only problem is daddy - whenever Kamui does something good, King Garon messes everything up by trying to get Kamui to do something evil or get one of his siblings to execute him. Really, the Anya siblings should all just kill Garon and have Marx take over the throne, things would be much easier. They don't seem to be in the mood to assassinate their dad though, so we've got to deal with his antics in the meantime. He keeps praying to some god named Hydra who is ordering him to drive Kamui mad with cruel missions and assignments.
In the meantime, Kamui is off to find the Rainbow Sage, who is said to be able to bestow power upon those who seek him out. Along the way we run into a lot of old friends. First, Aqua is being held captive by Byakuyua troops. We rescue her and find out that since Kamui's betrayal, Byakuya has been cracking down on anyone with any ties to Anya. Elise meets Aqua for the first time and is excited to have a new older sister, but Aqua doesn't seem to like Elise very much and Kamui gets the impression that she's not actually Elise's sister, although he keeps quiet about it for now. We also pick up a new sorcerer character, Nyx, in this mission. Nyx talks like an old woman despite looking young - I just got done playing Stella Glow with Hilda who had the same thing going on, this trope is pretty popular. After fumbling around I found an item that allows Kamui to change class to the one I chose at character creation, so now I'm finally a proud dark mage and not a weak sword-wielder! I wasted a lot of battles that could have been spent grinding Kamui's book aptitude up, but oh well. Better late than never.
With Aqua in tow, next up we head to a port city to catch a boat to get to the Rainbow Sage, but the port is under attack by Byakuya troops. Leading them is none other than Takumi, second royal brother on the Byakuya side. This map has a bunch of artillery that our units can use to blast enemy units from afar, very handy. Soon the enemy deploys some pegasus knights that threaten to overwhelm our position, but big-sis Camilla comes in riding her dragon with her retainers to save Kamui. Camilla is really, really strong. One thing I did remember from FE 6 and 7 was that it's best to try not to over-use these pre-promoted characters because they'll hog all the experience, and apparently Anya Kingdom version will not allow unlimited grinding to make up for it, so I had her only come out when necessary. We kick Takumi's ass and let him escape with his life, as usual.
We get to the village where the Rainbow Sage is said to be and surprise, he's up in a tower on a mountain that's said to be a real trial to climb. Also, Byakuya forces have taken him into protective custody, led by Byakuya royal older sister Hinoka. A fight ensues and we also chop through Rinka and Suzukaze on the way to reach her - once again, Kamui orders his forces to not take any lives, so we somehow manage to suppress Hinoka's forces without inflicting a single casualty on their side. I don't really know how our archers and mages are 'shooting to injure and not to kill' but apparently we are, somehow. We force Hinoka to retreat, but Suzukaze is so impressed by Kamui's determination to change Anya Kingdom from the inside that he betrays Byakuya and joins up with our party. This is kind of crazy because Suzukaze's older brother is one of Ryouma's main retainers - he's willing to throw away his brother and be a traitor for life for this? Okay, I guess. Also, I would have thought that some of the Anya folks would be a little suspicious of letting a Byakuya ninja join our party, he could easily slit Kamui's throat at night in base, but nobody says anything. Whatever. One good thing here is that Kamui clears up to everyone that his main reason for betraying Byakuya was for the sake of his Anya brothers and sisters - he makes it clear that was his primary motivation. I mentioned earlier that I wished he would have made that clearer at the time of the actual decision, but better late than never.
We reach the Rainbow Sage and Kamui asks for his blessing of power. The Rainbow Sage...tells Kamui that the trials he endured getting to the Rainbow Sage were the blessing, the power was inside him all along! Also, some stuff about being the key to a fire crest...wait, fire crest, fire emblem? I think I get it. Seriously though, this guy - it's amazing nobody's killed the sage is warriors regularly make the trip to him only to be told that the trip there was its own reward. Speaking of killing the sage, King Garon's right-hand man appears via illusion and orders Kamui to kill the Rainbow Sage. Kamui doesn't want to, but the Rainbow Sage is kind enough to end his own life instead, so mission complete for daddy! That was convenient. Tragedy strikes on the way back home to the castle though, as Elise falls ill to a disease that she caught earlier while we were looking for the Rainbow Sage.
There's a place nearby that we can get medicine to cure Elise's illness, but it's being guarded by Ryouma and his forces. This mission was interesting, previously we had a 'survive for X number of turns' mission against Takumi, but this time it's 'break through the enemy lines within X number of turns' or else Elise succumbs to her disease. We get more reinforcements, this time it's Marx's two retainers who join our party. Along the way we fight Ryouma's retainers, one of them is Suzukaze's older brother Saizou. I have Suzukaze deliver the finishing blow to him just to rub that Byakuya traitor salt in their wounds a bit more, but as usual they escape with their lives. Ryouma guards the spot on the map we have to break through and he's probably really scary to fight, but I just took out his nearby guards and then snuck right past him to clear the mission. Maybe Camilla could have taken him on, but the mission was so long I didn't want to risk losing someone and having to reset.
The home base stuff is interesting. There are missions (only one so far, but I'm sure more will come) where enemies attack your base and you defend it - your buildings provide you with bonuses and since you can control the layout of your base, you can try to set up good defensive positions. There's also a dungeon where you can use certain characters to capture enemies in battle and keep them imprisoned, possibly recruiting them into your party eventually. I captured some Byakuya spearman to test it out and had him join me, but I don't see much point in using generic characters when the named ones exist, since they get support bonuses and conversations with each other and I doubt generics do.
Some of my characters are getting closer to Lv.20 so I have promotions to look forward to. My support conversations have also been moving along - right now Kamui probably has highest affinity with Felicia, Elise, Nyx and Aqua. I'm not sure who I'll pair him with when it comes time to decide - probably not Elise for obvious reasons (or maybe not so obvious, since the game makes it an option), leaning towards Nyx or Aqua. It depends on if you get any bonuses from the spouse, like if Nyx would provide Kamui with bonuses to his spellcasting or not. Kamui also has a dragon orb that he can use to transform and attack from a distance, but Aqua warned him that if he used his power too much he might lose himself, so I'm thinking that might lead to a bad end if I rely on it too much. I might pair Harold (clumsy Captain Gordon foreigner stereotype looking guy) with Effie, and maybe Silas (knight childhood friend) with Elise. Not sure who to have Felicia S-rank with. I've got a shortage of male characters with support options right now since I don't use Zero or Odin much, but that'll probably balance out if/when Marx and Leon. I'm probably choosing all the wrong combinations for min-maxing but oh well, I'm just going with my gut this first playthrough. P.S. I'm going to just stick to calling the countries Anya and Byakuya kingdom, it's too confusing to keep switching names between the localized and original versions.
Random JRPG blogging about the games I'm currently playing.