Time to resolve the mini-drama between Alto and Sopra. Sopra is crushed back at base that Alto would leave them, and Xird gives her a shard of the lapis he used his gravity magic on to save the country leaders earlier as a good luck charm to cheer her up before it's time to go try and resuce Alto. Meanwhile at Amadeus HQ, Asuwad and Libra are trying to get Alto to match her Leivaria song magic up with Libra, who is also capable of using song magic. It seems they only needed one of the two of Sopra or Alto, Libra can provide the other half of the song. Alto is a bit mentally broken at this point, both because of Libra's song and also just normally, thinking that it's too late to go back at this point because she chose this path freely. Pretty sure she didn't sign up for world destroying, though.
Anyway, we crash their party and Asuwad and Libra are waiting with their song magic and monsters. Alto pulls Sopra aside for a duel to decide which of them is better once and for all, while Libra and her monster hordes face the other 5 members of our party. One of the bonus conditions here is actually to NOT kill Alto, so I had Sopra mostly just run circles around her and buy time while the rest of my party cleaned up Libra and her monsters. After we win though, Asuwad and Libra bring out their trump card by finally getting Alto to match her song with Libra's. The song is too powerful and everyone can barely move, and Alto is also made to stab Sopra against her own will by its power. We manage to retreat back to our floating base with an injured Sopra to reform our plan. Sopra's life was saved thanks to the charm Xird gave her earlier, he was able to use his gravity magic on the lapis to slow Alto's stab so that the wound wasn't as deep as it otherwise would have been.
While our team is thinking up ways to mentally resist that song's power so that they can attack a second time, Alto is having a panic attack about stabbing Sopra and wanting out - Asuwad reveals that he's also a Conductor and he tunes her so that her power is amplified with Libra's, and the area they're in suddenly starts generating areas of cursed Dark Desert and countless hordes of monsters. Violet muses that they've probably got their hands on the lapis of darkness and are using its power too along with the Leivaria. No time for more planning, we run in to try and stop them and extract Alto one more time and beat down Libra and her monsters again.
Libra has lost a lot of her scare value by this point, it's just yet another fight with her and her monster hordes, after which we grab Alto and try to escape with her in tow. She falls off our floating city though, and Sopra dives after her. With their songs, the lapis from earlier, and Xird's gravity magic they manage to get pulled back up to the city and we make a run for it before everything crumbles. Everyone makes up and that whole subplot is wrapped up. I guess it would have been the other way around with Sopra doing mostly the same things that Alto did if I had chosen Alto. Anyway, Alto joins our party finally, and I think I've got all player characters at last.
One unexpected guest does arrive in our floating city - a single huge monster. Monsters shouldn't be able to get into here thanks to Aqua's protective magic, but somehow this one did. When we beat it down, it turns out that it was actually the murderer guy from Hisoka's country from earlier, Razi Sole, who turned into a monster. We're not sure quite how this happened, but it seems like the Amadeus folks can control people (like when Razi stabbed Xird earlier and Alto stabbed Sopra just now), so now we're afraid they might be able to turn them into monsters too with Leivaria's song. Anyway, can we please just kill this guy already? Just drop him off the edge of the ship or something.
Our next objective is to save each country from the horde of monsters unleashed earlier. It's unknown what happened to Asuwad and Libra after their song magic failed, but they still produced a pretty huge amount of rampaging monsters. For some reason, only certain countries are being attacked while others are being ignored entirely. In the most urgent need of help are Hisoka and Rana's home countries - Hisoka's doesn't have a strong leader right now since until recently Razi Sole was the leader and he was just recently deposed. There's a huge monster group headed there, so we make it our first priority. Second stop will be Rana's hometown, where the leader there is an 11 year old boy who can't get the other tribes to respect him so they won't come support him from the monster attacks. They only support people who have proved themselves in battle, so they won't come save an 11 year old because he can't fight. What a bunch of dicks.
First stop: Hisoka's hometown. The town is in bad shape, monsters have overtaken almost all of it, but the military cop who arrested Razi Sole from earlier is leading a resistance in the library. He's determined to protect the library's knowledge if nothing else, and we carve a path through the monsters to get to him and then to get back out after helping thin the monsters' numbers. Next up we check in on Rana's home country and things are in bad shape, so we're headed there next to help out Kalakala, the 11 year old kid leading it. Hopefully we get to smack around the other village elders a bit for expecting a kid his age to fight against monsters. Before that, though, Xird collapses and everyone carries him to Aqua's blessed water to rest up. Everyone has been mentioning that he looks worse than usual for the past few chapters, seems his curse is accelerating and even Aqua's magic is losing its ability to keep it in check.
I'm glad the story finally started moving a bit, even if it's still nothing special. At the same time though, the gameplay is starting to get really stale. One thing had some potential to spice things up - once we rescued Alto, events start popping up where they can hear the voice of the lapis telling them where the other halves of our idols' score sheets are. I went and retrieved the second half of the sheets for Hisoka, Palsh and Aqua. After getting the second half, they learn a new special song magic attack. Disappointingly, the attack animation is exactly the same, it's just a new short song clip for each. I also liked the first songs better than the new ones in all 3 so far. I had that same complaint with Stella Glow - the first songs were mostly better than the second ones in my opinion. Seems it will be the same case here. No transformations or anything else so far, either. It's a shame because the gameplay is getting really repetitive. Sing at the start of the battle until everyone has 300 LP, dump song magic on enemies, clean up, repeat. With my characters at around Lv.70-72 I imagine I'm probably getting close to the end, though.
One thing I did find funny is that Aqua's second song magic can be used to heal allies in addition to harming enemies, but the attack animation is still the same as before- her sending a water shockwave exploding all over her targets. It's the most painful looking cure spell I've seen.
Random JRPG blogging about the games I'm currently playing.