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Let's Play Pokemon Snakewood! Chapter 13 & 14

Posted December 14th, 2018 at 3:46 PM by Rainbow Chara X
Updated December 14th, 2018 at 3:47 PM by Rainbow Chara X
Tags lp#1

(Part 2 and 3)

Future Dan Says: The reason the chapters are split up like this is because even I know better than to subject someone through a three-chapter post. That's like, 300 images without a break.

Chapter 13 - His Worthiness
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Spoiler:



Now that we're at the spontaneously snow-covered Shakya Monastery, let's go talk with some of the monks here.



"We live in fear. One Sage per generation is allowed to use his powers to defend the Monastery, and that one is Izumii. If he should fail, we will all die."

Jesus, that's laying it quite a bit thick for one person to defend the entire Monastery. Of course, I can kind of understand a normally pacifistic sect not using their powers to fight. However, self-defense is a pretty good excuse to stop the Monastery from falling apart.

I mean, they all have Pokemon and train with them, so... I don't know.



"These statues are of Barqesh, the man who revealed the Ultimate Truth of reality into the world."

... I'm not one for questioning worldviews but this sounds like complete donkey dookey.



By Barqesh, he means the strange yellow monster in front of us. Well, the statue of him, anyway.

Okay, serious question. How the hell did the monks put up their monastery here so quickly? Wasn't this literally only a few years after the events of Gen 3? I find it really hard to swallow that they managed to build this entire site and have "generations" of Sages in that timespan.



"Magma became glassy ice, and the Ice-type Pokemon came to live here. Because our sect believes that the cold is necessary for the attention of enlightenment, we came here too."

So they are nomads. However, that still raises more questions than answers them.

A volcano in a tropical region like Hoenn will not just suddenly freeze over after it erupts because it's not a cold enough environment to warrant it.



"E-e-e-eh... That monster in the desert has been working with the Demons. They bring the ice that destroys the land, and the monster that brings the sand that blights the soil."

... So the Frost Demons are the real reason why Mt. Chimney froze over. Alright, I'll take that explanation. I don't really care, let's just get through this.



... Hello, unfortunate name number #6.

I wonder what he sells.



Oh, he's Snakewood's equivalent of the Herb Shop. I would buy these if I had a grudge against my Pokemon, but they're one of the few things I actually like in this. So nope.



"The Sage rotates slowly on his own axis, despite being seated in the lotus position. He is truly a powerful monk."

Interesting, to say the least. I like it when the Pokemon world has these kinds of trainers.



There's also this, but the Poke Center does a much better job at many other things. This is just here for novelty, I guess.



Fancy set-up. He must be the elder, then.



"You must help us, young one! Please, go forth to the desert, and destroy the foul monstrosity that our brother Izumii is currently attacking."

: "So the person chosen to use their powers to protect the Monastery, who is apparently more skilled with psychic powers than I ever could be, needs my help? What the hell would I even do?"

: ("... Jack, brattah, you do realize that we're here right?")
: "Yeah, Reggie, but everybody says I'm the one that has the powers. They never credit you guys for some reason. I mean, yeah, I know some moves but I'm completely out of my league with this."
: ("I don't really mind as long as we protect you, but the lack of respect from these people sure is getting on my nerves.")
: "Yeah, it's getting really annoying. Anyway, let me check something."



"You don't understand what they're saying. It's in some old, forgotten language."

I'm glad Cutlerine is at least making an effort to make these people seem mysterious.



Anyway, Ambes, let's go. We're going monster hunting in the desert.

: ("W-wh-what!? Jack, you can't be serious! I'll get slaughtered out there!")
: "You're in no real danger. I know this for a fact."
: ("A-alright, I believe you.")



The land is coming apart at the seams!

That glitch is honestly really freaky looking.



... The monster was an Aerodactyl. It's... cool, I guess? Oh and look, he actually changed the overworld sprite! This man is so hot and cold about the quality of his work, I swear.



"For many days I have laboured, using my magics to seal off the beast that Famine summoned here to destroy the land and form the desert. I drove it into this corner, and by sheer willpower I am keeping it there. But I fear I cannot hold out much longer... Go forth, young warrior, and defeat this abomination of the land!"

Yo, that's actually pretty badass. For a regular human using only magic, he did an impressive job fighting this thing.



Let's rip it a new one!



OH MUK IT'S A SHINY!

Sure, it may be like the Red Gyarados of this hack but there goes the plan of fighting this guy. I have a feeling he would live longer switching loyalties to Jack.

Ambes, you're up.

: ("Jack, are you insane!? This guy is LEVEL 40! You're going to get me killed!")



: "... You were saying?"
: ("I-I-I... Wow! That nearly gave me a heart attack!")
: ("But damn, that was cool!")
: "All in a day's work."



His name shall be Helmaroc because I have no adequate answer beyond Zelda reference.



"You - you defeated the monster? Your power is great indeed, young one. I can finally return home. Thank you for your great kindness."

: "It was nothing, really. I mean, it wasn't even that hard..."



"Aha! You have defeated the Aerodactyl. But there are still dark forces at work here. The demons still hold the peak of the mountain. I must ask you to destroy them for me. When you return, go to the Tower. At its peak, I shall wait for you."

Alright, let's go do just that. I'm up for blasting some demons.



Now that we have the clearance, we can go into the mountain. I wonder what's in store for us?



I'm not impressed by all of this blue. I am, however, impressed by an easy to use healing spot.



[Current audio in-game: Of course]

Gen 3 has some of the best songs period. Gushing about the music aside, I should mention that I really do like the iced over setting even if the only explanation is "Frost Demons did it".



Oh no, Inquisition members. But hey, at least they're fighting the visually dissonant Frost Demons for us!

There's nothing in that house, by the way, so don't bother looking.



You know, when I asked what was going to be here, I didn't want to hear "The Deadly Seven."

And to think this was going to be a good day.



"As if you never beat me, here's... Mikov!"

Yes, like everybody wanted to see you guys again. Why does the Inquisition keep these guys around?



He has two Glooms and this Vileplume, but Ace dealt with them easily.



(Bobov): "Onions! Pears! Gasoline! What's the answer to my riddle? Find out - after the battle!"

NOBODY CARES YOU LUNATIC




Ambes, psyduck him up!
: [Cracks knuckles]





Atta boy.



Oh and Tohru had to handle the Steelix because you're bonkers if Ambes is going up against that thing.



: "You are SO not funny."

Preach it, Jack. I'm sick of this muk too.



"Oh! Jack! It is I, Sage Izumii! I came here to fight with you, in thanks for your help in the desert. Go on, I'll hold them off!"

This man deserves my respect as a badass.



"Here I am, folks! Time to rumble with the Gunkmeister!"

: "You changed your personality again?!"

It actually kind of physically hurt writing out that line for Gunkov. He has two Kenchira, but they're no big deal.



Why couldn't that have actually been what happened?



Okay, this is just dumb. Next!



At least these fights aren't long, but god damn it why these guys again?



He was trying to act like Yoda. Yeah, like any of this is going to stop Jack from beating their asses.



You poor, poor muffin.



AAH WHY ARE YOU HERE AGAIN

bellamine blast the thing already



My garden of psyducks to give is completely barren. Let's just move on.



Oh hey, look, something that isn't a migraine the Deadly Seven!



"Go back to there you came from or I'll destroy you!"

: "Fufufufu... What an amusing thought. You think you can destroy me? Let me show -"


Chloe: "A civilian? Get back! This is an extremely dangerous situation!"

I thought she would have recognized Jack just from how much trouble he's caused?



"Demon, I won't let you take innocent lives! Prepare to be cast into the Aby--"

[Chloe is flung back a few paces]



"Pathetic. And here I was thinking that you might prove an interesting opponent. You Taoists are all nothing to me."

So he beat a Taoist just like that. How the hell are we supposed to fight him?



"You defeated Alicia, even weakened as you were by my crippling sandstorms. You are a formidable foe. I shall fight you when I am better prepared."

[Famine teleports away]

... What. He beats Chloe like it's no big deal, but runs away from Jack almost instantly? Famine is the biggest coward in the entire hack!

The story sets him up to be like this badass with a ton of control, yet everything with him ends in a major anti-climax! Like come on, Cutlerine.



"Hm? Aren't you the kid who's been messing with our people along with Gleis?"

: "Yes. You're the bad guys, Gleis and I are the good guys - that's how it works."

I would say this is awfully black and white for Jack but after what he had to go through in the Inquisition Base, I don't hold it against him for adopting this mindset at all.



"Don't you know he's up to?"

: "He's fighting the Four Horsemen and their zombie legions... Right?"

Chloe: "True, but not for the reasons you think. He's serving another master. A darker master than even the Horsemen and their ally Meteor. That master is also launching an invasion of Hoenn in the east, and Gleis is the spy sent to destroy the western forces from within."

: "That's crazy!"

So Gleis is a bad guy? Maybe? I don't know how reliable Chloe's information is.


This is a really complicated story, jeez.



"A strong trainer like you - we need your help! Before you arrived, that demon said something about him being angry that his sister had been defeated. That was you, wasn't it?"

: "... Yeah. I defeated Pestilence."

Chloe: "You see? No one else in this region could have done that. We need your strength!"

:"I don't know... Gleis has helped me out a lot."

Chloe: "Has he? What has he actually done?"


("And come to think of it, he lied when he told me I would find answers in New Mauville.")

Jack, you idiot, he's the one that teleported you back to New Mauville out of the Inquisition Base. Also, he's the one who gave you Rock Smash.


Then again, aside from that, he hasn't actually done anything to help.

: "I guess you're right."

Chloe: "Really? Fantastic! I'm glad you realize that! Look, I have to go but I would appreciate it if you would drop by my house later."


You can tell him just asking this is giving him a giant cold sweat.

Chloe: "Oh no. The base you invaded was our secondary base. I live in our main base, north of here in Fallarbor. Well, see you!"

[Screen fades to black, followed by Chloe disappearing]

Well, that was a fun exposition dump. Makes me curious who the real bad guy is in all this. You know, aside from the obvious overlord looming over our heads.



"Oh! Thank you so much for your help! The demons and those odd government people have left. On behalf of the Sangha, I declare you a pure soul. If you so choose, you may now enter the sacred Shakyamuni Tower. Well, farewell!"

[Izumii walks off]

Aw snap, we're worthy now.



If you tried to go into that tower before this, you would get kicked out by a booming disembodied voice, so I don't blame Jack for being scared of it this time.

Shakyamuni is another name for Buddha, which is appropriate for the Monastery.



Take us back, babe.

: ("As you wish, Jack. Although you could have just walked down.")


"This is the Shakyamuni Tower. Only the truly worthy may climb it and grace our elders with their power."

I'm pumped already. Let's go inside.



[Current audio in-game: ... The first part of the title theme?]

... Interesting choice of music. That said though, the song doesn't last very long. It just cuts out and nothing else plays, which sorta proves the title screen theme isn't a good idea for an area theme.



: "Of course."

These Sages are pretty cool, all things considered.



You could even say... ice cold.

... Yeah, that was horrendous.


Isn't that why Jack is here? That he's a "pure" guy?



Oh hey, he has a Claydol. Not that it's much of a hassle, but that's some delicious EXP coming our way.

I also neglected to mention that all of the Sages have the Rival Battle theme, which is cool and all but the fights tend to end really quickly thanks to how fragile the Sages' mons are.



I have nothing to really say other than these guys are really easy. I can understand why Izumii is the only one that's capable of protecting the Monastery thanks to everybody else's set-ups.



"An odd man came by earlier, looking for the Chikuwa Salesman who lives on the top of the mountain. Inconveniently, he left his armor here, and since we are sworn to peace, we can't use it. You may as well have it."

Came by where? In the Tower or in the Monastery in general? Also, bullmuk, you guys train with Pokemon to use them to fight with Jack.



It's just the Focus Band under a different name but thanks anyway.



"You're getting close now! Soon, you will meet our Elder. But first..."

... This guy noticed me from beyond the graves. That is not an event, either. That's actually how he chooses to fight you!

These guys really are psychic!

Introduction aside, he's nothing special.



[Current audio in-game: Suicune battle theme]

"Ah! Greetings, Jack. Once again, allow me to thank you for helping us with our problems."

I like this guy already.

: "No, it's fine. Just doing my job. By the way, you haven't heard anything about my the Pokemon Champion, have you? I heard he was last seen in the desert area."

Elder: "Landon? Yes, he found the Aerodactyl in the desert. He tried to catch it for us, but only managed to weaken it. I should think that is why you were able to defeat it."

Wait, he weakened it? As in, he actually knocked it down a few levels? So what Jack just caught was actually the toned down version? Christ.



Doubftul, considering he's the Champion and you're still in the mid 30s range in terms of overall level.

: "Do you know where he went?

Elder: "I believe he went to the east, to get back to Ever Grande and try to get the help of the Elite Four."

... Guys I want you to imagine this. The Elite Four vs. the Four Horsemen. It would be dumb as hell, but it would also be amazing.



"One more question - what is with those arms I can see behind you?"

Elder: "Oh! You can see them? You must have the second sight. Those arms are my psychic power. They are invisible to most people. Now, I believe I promised you a battle. If you win, I shall make a gift to you!"

: "You're on!"

That's actually pretty cool. I mean, the game is going to have to give us a plot progression item for this but I can tell it's just going to be rad.



OH GOD

We bask in the presence of Wobbuffet, the destroyer of worlds. His immense health combined with his counter-attacks can and will annihilate you. If this was anybody other than Reggie, the primary debuffer of the crew, it would have gone down south fast. He also tries to screw you over with Destiny Bond, so if you're not careful you're going to be out one mon no matter how well you performed.



Reggie puts him in his place with relative ease, however. The elder is honestly one of the best opponents so far because he's not messing around and you shouldn't either.



JESUS CHRIST, HE HAS A CELEBI!

How in the world did the Elder get Celebi? One of the rarest Pokemon behind Mew? Alright, that's it - the elder is one of the best trainers in the game.

This guy's pretty tough too, because even with a 4x weakness, he only took a minor amount of damage from Leech Life.



... Despite that, Celebi went down easily too. It's not even like a contest - Reggie ripped through both of them in no time flat. You're a killer, my rastafarian Parasect.



"You have defeated even my Celebi, the Pokemon of Time. You are mighty indeed. Take this as your reward."


Yellow Vespa? What is that? Let me look it up.



OH DAMN THIS IS WHAT WE GOT





"That was a gift to the Monastery from Gym Leader Haruko. She has a lot of them. Apparently, they can go very fast - fast enough to scale mudslides."

Ooooooh. Let's use it when we get out of the Tower!



Aw, here we go.





YEAAAAAAAA BOI

Yes, the Yellow Vespa is the replacement for the Mach Bike in this. Rad. It's also another reference to FLCL if I'm not mistaken.

Before we go down the road to plot, however, let's make our way back to Mt. Chimney.



... What the hell is that yellow thing in the corner there?



Oh, it's a... merchant? I... Okay, let's buy a Chikuwa.

EDIT: It took me a while to notice, but this thing is actually Don Patch from Bobobobo. One of my friends brought it up to me and I was just like "no way."



... Oooh. That'll be very useful.

By the way, Chikuwa are a real thing. They're a Japanese tube food made out of fish surumi, salt and other such things. Since they replace the Lava Cookie from the original game, I'm buying a lot of them.



Yeah, you needed the Yellow Vespa otherwise or you couldn't get past the mudslide right there.



: "Dude, a ton of people I've passed through in just today alone have tried to fight me to 'regain their strength'. It doesn't go down well, man."



: "Yeah, I'm sorry but I'm not a good practice partner. I can refer you to a Poke Center just down the path here..."



If Famine, your master, runs away from me the way he does because he's not strong enough, then you don't even have a snowball's chance in hell.



I would jump in to help, but that can wait a bit. See you for part 3.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Team setup:

(Reggie, , Level 32, has Leftovers, /) - Is chilling like a baller
(Bellamine, , Level 35, ) - "Although I don't trust that Chloe girl, I'm impressed by how complex this is turning. Stay on your toes, everyone."
(Ambes, , Level 30, ) - "I can't believe Ice Punch has become so useful..."
(Zagon, , Level 31, has Plus Band, ) - Is overwhelmed by the plot
(Ace, , Level 36, has Anadrin Talon, /) - Came back from extensive training
(Tohru, , Level 32, /) - "I'm not sure if I can follow these turn of events but as long as I have opponents to crush, you won't hear a complaint out of me."

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Back-up Team:


(Benedict, level 18, /) - * is spinning on its own axis *
(Alice, , level 12, ) - "... So Gleis is a bad guy, meow? I'm not sure who to trust aside from Jack, really."
(Jeanne, , level 18, ) - "This is getting kind of scary, really. A master that's more powerful than the Four Horsemen? I don't think I really want to know."
(Krusha, , level 12, /) - Is sitting alongside Cherry
(Ballin, , level 14, /) - "Guys, is it just me or is this adventure getting a bit... ridiculous?"
(Pumbloom, , level 14, ) - Is blushing heavily from the talk he had with Ambes
(Letro, level 15, /) - "DIFFICULTY SPIKE DETECTED. PROCEED WITH CAUTION."
(Cherry, , level 12, /) - "So, your name is Beatrice, is it?"
(Beatrice, , Level 26, /) - "Yes. It's a beautiful day, isn't it?~"
(Shine, , level 12, ) - "... Ambes took down an Onix with his fists. Wicked."
(Spark, , level 12, ) - "He really is the coolest brother we've ever had!"
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Chapter 14 - The Horseman of War
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Spoiler:



No time to waste, let's jump straight into the action.



Chef: "GOOOOOOH!"

[He disappears]

Oh damn. Why didn't we think of that?



"Those chefs are tough, aren't they? But they're easy to kill without their Munchlax and Kirlia protecting them. Care to battle me and get your strength up?"

: "You're on."



Jemima, huh? Let's just see this "Zangol".



AWWWWWWW YEAH

Zangol evolves from Zangoose at level 55, but let's not let the obvious hax distract us from this. Zangol is one of the best Fakemon in this entire hack, bar none, thanks to an excellent Attack stat and a cool design. This Zangol in particular knows Mega Kick, which will probably leave everything in a crater stained with blood so bring your best.



: ("Bring it on.")


Perfect.

[Ace used Wing Attack!]





It's decided.

(By the way, this is why Ace was such a higher level than everybody else. He kept getting one-shotted by Mega Kick, and I could not accept it. So I kept at it until everything was just right.)



: ("Good game, Zangol.")

I am speechless at how cool this was.



"You're really strong. I don't think you even needed to fight me. Well, I'm off."

You're goddamn right.


[Current audio in-game: Route 113]

hnnng gen 3 has so many good songs

Let's see what this "Blighted Way" has in store for us. You would think the snow would fall here too, but nope.



... Uh-oh. That's not a good sign. Seriously, who is the sick skunt going around and decapitating everything?



Oh no, this one's alive!

(well, as alive as a zombie can be)



UGHHH THEY'RE BACK

Remember what Letro said back in Chapter 13's team-setup? Difficulty spike ahead? Well, guess what?

This entire psyducking area is filled with Eye-Eyes. That, and they've gotten much deadlier than before because they have access to Ice Punch, Psychic, Sweet Kiss (confuses) and Lovely Kiss (puts you to sleep). If you don't bring a good Fire or Bug type, this place is going to be Ninth Circle of Hell for you.





Even though Tohru is being a total beast right now, he can't last long in these conditions. Let's retreat for a bit.



Jeanne, you're up.

: ("Wow Jack, really? I'd be happy to go with you!")


[Commence giant grinding session that took me three hours]



Fire Pump is essentially Flamethrower under a different name (only has 8 PP unfortunately), and due to Ninetales being a Stone Evolution, she has to learn it as a Vulpix. I don't care - now that she has this along with Sunny Day, she's going to be an utter nightmare.

You ready, Jeanne?

: ("Of course, Jack! Let's do it!")




Now let's melt some ice.

: ("With pleasure.")


Oh no, whatever shall I do.



: ("I let you off with a light roasting.")

Oh Jeanne, you're a doll.



: ("You, on the other hand, might require a bit more than embers.")

Yeah, no kidding. This Eye-Eye is like the strongest of them all. I would have like quit the game if Jeanne wasn't able to beat it.



Eleven level difference? What's that? They're both level 41 to me.



: ("... My flames... are nothing compared to what awaits you, monster... good riddance.")

holy hell this was down to the wire

Like just look at that. Everybody is getting their chance to shine in this episode and it's glorious.



I'm not so desensitized that I'd ignore a man in need.



Hahahaha.

This isn't even a warm-up.



: "Everybody gets one."

Now all Jack needs is a Spiderman mask.



Of course it is.



There was a Max Ether in the spot Jack is facing, but I didn't screencap it. Sorry.



"Halt, civilian! Fallarbor has been requisitioned by the Inquisition as our headquarters!"

That's a mouthful.



Yes, good. Less Hombone.



Oh psyduck. Zagon's down. I guess that's what I deserve for not bringing Tohru out.



But Jeanne decides to take the revenge shot anyway.



"Wait! You're that strong kid, aren't you? Damn, the Boss will kill me..."

Damn right.

Now let's stop messing around and go to Fallarbor already.



There's Inquisition everywhere.


And I do mean

EVERYWHERE.

But hey, this is the first real shop we've been to in a while so I can't really complain.



: "What's good, my man?"

They sell Super Repels and Revives. Hallelujah.



"Hello, Jack. Glad you could make it. The chefs and heads didn't make the journey too hard, I hope?"

: "No, it was okay. There were a couple of tough heads but otherwise it was fine."

Silly Jack, they were all tough. If Jeanne wasn't there, you literally could not have won.

Chloe: "Good. Well, I'll get out of your way. You can find me later at my house. And..."

: "Yeah?"


"She said she'd heard you'd be here. Her name was --"

: "Alicia?!"

That woman never leaves us alone, I swear.

Chloe: "Yeah, that's her! Well, see you around."

[Chloe leaves the Poke Center]


: "... If Alicia is here... that might not be a good thing. Oh screw it, I have time to kill."



Yes.

This is really a mini-game where Jack can partake in a drinking contest between these Inquisition footmen. It's luck-based whether he wins or not, but the reward is sweet.

"Jack swallowed the Magmar Whiskey with aplomb, with nary a sign of drunkenness. What a drinker!"


"Jack felt a little woozy after what Magmar Whiskey... It's strong stuff."

The effects of the alcohol shows the more you go on. Like one of these guys can actually ralph their lunch all over the table.



"Jack drunkenly steals the wallets of the two Inquisition footmen!"



You know, for all of the muk Jack gets throughout this entire adventure, this is wonderful karmic payback.

[Jack falls down from all of the alcohol he ingested - only to be brought back later by Bellamine]

: ("Jack, don't do that. You had us going.")
: "... Sorry about that. I just sort of need a break from all of this madness, you know?"
: ("I understand, but destroying your liver isn't the right way to do it.")
: "It was a one time thing - I'll never do it again. Let's just get out of here."



"No it isn't."

Footman #1: "Uh, yes it is."

This is the Move Tutor's house, by the way. He was apparently one of the people that were eaten by the zombies. God damn it.


OH MUK, HE'S PACKING!

[Jack ducks and covers]

"Is it checkmate now?"

Footman #1: "O-okay, that's not checkmate..."

I find this bit kinda funny, actually.



"The citizens of Fallarbor were all devoured some time ago. It's very sad, but it gave us this spot to move our main base to - the Island of Calm is too weird for us to stay there long. Otherwise we end up like -"

: "The Deadly More-than-Seven?"

Footman: "Yeah. [Shudders]"

So the Island of Calm is what drove the Deadly Seven insane? Watch this get contradicted spectacularly later on.



Let's go inside the (former) Contest Hall already.



"This area is about as secure as we can make it, but we're all still afraid we might face death at any moment. Literally."

... Literally?


"Jack!"

: "Alicia! What are you doing here?"
: "I... rethought my allegiances. I've decided to abandon the Horsemen. I'm going to help you!"
: "That's great! So, can you please tell me exactly what is going on?"

: ("... Oh please, don't tell me you're going to fall for th--")


: "What?!"
: "Hear me out. We were partners, both working for Lord Gravetric - the ruler of the Underworld. He was deposed by the Four Horsemen. We fought against them at the Lord's side, but in the end we couldn't win. They collapsed your house on us. I got out alive, but I thought you were dead. I had no choice but to work for the Horsemen."

... So Jack worked for the bad guy?



"So I lost my memory when the house collapsed on us..."

: "That must be what happened."

: "But why didn't Prof. Birch tell me any of this?"

: "He didn't want your family and friends to worry about you, or try to stop you in your work."

... So we worked for a dark overlord with the edgiest title and Birch didn't want to stop us from doing so. This smells like utter horsemuk.

: "I see... It explains how everybody knew me. And where does Meteor fit in?"
: "You and he had a contract. The Dragons would fight alongside us against the Horsemen in return for you persuading Lord Gravetric to release his daughter from prison."
: "This is getting really weird. Meteor has a daugher in prison?"
: "Yes. She tried to break out of Underworld and into this world - something that only Deathcallers and the Lord are allowed to do."

I have a very sinking feeling this contradicts some established Pokemon lore. Even if it isn't, it feels so out of place and dumb considering the setting.

: "I see... so what do we do now?"
: "I think you know that the Four Horsemen are engaged in combat with Gleis and his forces in the east. Those forces are the zombie rebels that still serve Lord Gravetric. We have to stop the Four Horsemen here, so that no more of their lives are lost!"

My interest in this story is waning steadily.



: "The Horsemen are using Meteor Falls as their base of operations. We need to infiltrate it and take them down."
: "Okay!"

Jack, not even your optimism can save this. I'm sorry.



"When you are ready, come and find me. It'll just be like old times!"

[Alicia walks offscreen]

Well, that was a massive plot dump. Let's just get out of here.



Let's go visit the Fossil Maniac's house.



"Fuahahaha! My brother, now dead, was once a Fossil Maniac. He dug out a maze of tunnels. Can YOU find your way through the catacombs to find the treasure I have hidden within? Fuahahaha!"

... A maze? Well, let's try it out.





For the love of everything that is good and decent in this world, NO NO NO

You're essentially walking in the dark for this entire thing, and the worst part is that this place is frankly enormous. I swear to god I started to panic when I got a fair amount in because I was scared that I couldn't find the exit. As far as I'm concerned there is no map for this.

If the Fallarbor theme wasn't playing, I would have lost my mind a long time ago.



By some divine act, I managed to find to find the treasure in a short amount of time. It was not worth it.

Cutlerine, you're too much of a troll with this game I swear.



Inquisition grinding is always good.



"This tree is made entirely from painted diamond. The Hombone won't be cutting this any time soon."

Oh, what a shame.



Free Riesen if you want one. Let's go drop by Chloe's house like we promised.



"Jack! Good to see you. Let me get straight to the point: I have a favor to ask you."

: "Yeah?"

Chloe: "The Four Horsemen. I know, are using Meteor Falls as their hideout. We are going to storm it."

: "Seriously?"

Chloe: "That's right. You and Alicia are going to go in first, since you're way stronger than any of us. Find your way straight to the Horsemen and take them down. The full force of the Inquisition will be behind you to protect you two from the zombies they'll summon. Just get to the Horsemen. If I can spare anyone, I'll send you back-up."

: "It won't be necessary. Alicia and I will handle this!"

He sure is faithful regarding Alicia. Never does it cross his mind that she might not be telling the truth.



: "Yeah?"

Chloe: "Don't listen to the Deadly Seven. They'll only drive you insane."

: "Oh. Er, okay."



[Fade to black]

Well, that advice would have been a lot more useful a few chapters ago.



... Yeah, that's actually good advice. Don't do that.



Also, say hello to a new badass. Valor will be part of the wrecking crew from now on.



"We all only use the Rock type, because it symbolizes a cold heart and ruthlessness, which we need to kill the zombified corpses of former friends and family."

... Wow.

That's a legitimately cool idea. I mean, it's a powerful meaning that could be better utilized in a story that's not batmuk insane.



* Discussion intensifies *



"Come on! We've got to stop the Four Horsemen, for our Lord and your revenge!"

Revenge? I thought I was here to kick ass without bias.



I love Meteor Falls, especially in the Hoenn remakes. I swear, if this hack didn't take place in Hoenn it would be nigh-unplayable for me. I'm just sayin'.



Oh no, it's the bruh zombies!



[We walk past with little effort]

Well, that was certainly intense.



"I'll see you on the lower floor. That's where the Horsemen will be."

[Alicia walks off]

Fun thing to note: There are no wild encounters in the area we are in right now for some reason.



Cool. This would be hella rad if we had like an Aggron or something but as far as things go, it's just less space in the TMs pocket.



Hey, why is Alicia beside Famine and Pestilence like that?



[Current audio in-game: Heavy Rainfall theme]

"Alicia, help me bring them down!"

...

: "Haha..."
: "Fufufu..."
: "Hahahahahaha!"
: "Fufufufufufufu!"

*OVERLY EXAGGERATED GENERIC VILLAIN LAUGH*





"... Oh! Wait. Oh no. Alicia?"

: "Watch who you call Alicia, brat."
: "Alicia?!"
: "I am no more Alicia than you. There never was any Alicia. I am War, one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse."



: "Yes! Everything was a lie. Everything I told you, from the moment we met in Oldale. We created the character of Alicia, lied about your past, in order to lure you here."

... Well then. We've been duped this entire time.

: "But... but... why?"
: "The leader of the forces in the east wanted you. So we stopped him. We faked your death, but before we could recover your body, you woke up and went with the damnable Birch. So I disguised myself as a human. Slowly, I gained your trust, and now you are here. And now you cannot escape."
: "It's all been... a lie..."
: "Indeed it was. We even placed subconcious messages that told you Alicia could not be a Horseman. My little sister told you in Verdanturf that she was the sole female member of the Four Horsemen, for example. All lies."

Poor Jack.



"Why does this dark lord of the east want me?"

: "We don't know. It is Meteor's duty to find out. His daughter was punished heavily for his straying to Dewford."


: "That bit is still true? Meteor's daughter has been locked up?"

: "Of course. How else would you control a dragon? They're far too temperamental and hot-blooded to be controlled without such brutish methods."

Wow, that's a side of Famine I didn't need to know about.

"So I'm a victim, Meteor's a victim. I guess there's only one person I can trust around here aside from my Pokemon. I don't need your help, Alicia - or War, whatever you call yourself."


[Theme changes over to the Psychic Encounter theme but I feel this scene would go better with Live-A-Live's main theme instead]

"I'll end this zombie war and find my brother! I'll free Meteor's daughter and restore Hoenn to all of its former glory!"

This man has a will of iron and the heart of a lion.

: "Quite a speech for a little kid like you -"



... I... thought he was older?

: "Whatever. The point is, you don't stand a chance. Meteor didn't. Chloe didn't. Nor your brother."
: "I do."

Oh, Jack being a badass here makes up for every awful moment we've had so far.


: "I'm being serious. With the help of my Pokemon, I've defeated foes Chloe couldn't. I'm stronger than her. I defeated your corrupted Aerodactyl, Famine, when my brother couldn't. I'm stronger than him. And I defeated Meteor. I'm also stronger than him. Do you understand? I'm the strongest in Hoenn. Chloe told me so, and I can see it's true."

: "Perhaps. But we are the strongest in the universe. If you think you can take us on, I shall be your first opponent! I won't hold back - I intend to kill you!"

Let's settle this once and for all.



[Theme I would choose for this encounter: Young Nobleman of Madness]

... Oh boy. Now that she's dropped the Alicia persona, Horseman War is probably the most dangerous opponent so far and appropriately so. I love this final encounter - like top ten best legitimate fights in the entire game. It's something that's been developed ever since the start of the game and even though it's honestly not that big of a surprise, the way it was handled makes this final fight with War all the sweeter when you actually kick her ass.

If you can, level grind a bit before coming to Meteor Falls because Alicia/War is rocking some really high level Pokemon and all of them, even the weakest one, are lethal.



Her first mon is this Sableye. She'll try to fake you out with Protect and critical you with a Shadow Swipe (which is Ghost type, so watch out). Despite the threat, though, Sunny Day-boosted Jeanne managed to burn it into a pile of ash.



... Gigawolf sounds pretty badass. I wonder what it is?



It's Zoroark! Watch out for this crude dude!

Gigawolf is probably the biggest threat up War's sleeve. She's fast, strong and comes with Earthquake. In Snakewood, Gigawolf is the final evolution of Mightyena at Max Happiness - so that gives me some horrifying ideas as to how this thing came to like Alicia so much.

(In hindsight, I should have really gotten one for myself.)



Even Tohru, our premier fighting type, nearly died from her. Don't underestimate Gigawolf!



Banette was a cakewalk, but that's only because Ace and Bellamine were here.



Oh dear god.

Another demon ready to rip us in two. If this were Gen 6, I don't think we could handle fighting a Mega Gengar. Thank the ever loving lord that Reggie paralyzed her, otherwise we would have gotten into a giant Hypnosis trap.



Super tank Dusclops is now a reality. And by god, if I wasn't the debuff kind of guy, this would have been a nightmare.



... Perfect.



Confuse Ray + Sunny Day-boosted Flamethrower + Burn = See ya, ho!




Sneasel can evolve into Weavile in this hack, which is pretty cool. That said, though, Weavile is just as blistering in here as it is in the normal games. Watch your guard.



Even with a 4x weakness, she still chopped a large amount of Tohru's health out. But that doesn't matter because we've kicked Alicia's ass once and for all!







[Fade to black, followed by Rock Smash SFX]


...


What is that overworld sprite

: "What? We're expanding! It is natural, dear Death. We need to -"

: "SILENCE. YOU ARE NOT INTENDED TO INTERFERE WITH THE WORKINGS OF THE HUMAN WORLD. FOR THIS TRANSGRESSION, YOU SHALL BE PUNISHED. FOR NOW, RETURN."

: "No!"
: "No!"
: "No!"

[Fade to black followed by the other three Horsemen disappearing]


Oh my god his sprite is literally a skull on a black traffic cone.

: "I AM COMPLETELY IMPARTIAL. I COME TO ALL IN THE END. MY BROTHERS AND SISTERS ARE TRANSIENT, WEAK AND CORRUPTIBLE. I DO NOT HAVE DESIRES. HOWEVER, I HAVE ONE TASK. YOU ARE A PART OF THEIR PLAN. YOU MUST BE ELIMINATED."

: "Ah! Wait... Um... Bye!"



[Jack runs off to the side and jumps into the pool of water]

... did we just



... WHAT THE PSYDUCK!

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Team setup:

(Reggie, , Level 33, has Leftovers, /) - Is currently unconscious
(Bellamine, , Level 36, ) - "... Did we just outrun Death?"
(Jeanne, , Level 36, ) - "This is getting a bit too silly for my tastes."
(Zagon, , Level 33, has Plus Band, ) - Is scratching her head, very lost as to what just happened.
(Ace, , Level 37, has Anadrin Talon, /) - "I guess we just defied Death. I'd take any explanation to make this cooler, to be frank."
(Tohru, , Level 36, /) - "... I don't even care anymore."

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Back-up Team:

(Benedict, level 18, /) - * hops up and down *
(Alice, , level 12, ) - "... I am soooo confused, meow. I just hope Jack doesn't get hurt!"
(Krusha, , level 12, /) - Is slack-jawed at what just happened
(Ballin, , level 14, /) - "Yep, we've officially reached dumb."
(Pumbloom, , level 14, ) - Is hoping for Jack to come back to the Poke Center safely
(Letro, level 15, /) - "CANNOT CALCULATE LOGIC OF PLOT - CRITICAL ERROR! BEEP BOOP BZZT!"
(Cherry, , level 12, /) - "... You're not so bad, Bea."
(Beatrice, , Level 26, /) - "You're a charmer yourself, Cherry~"
(Ambes, , Level 30, ) - "... What the heck just happened?!"
(Shine, , level 12, ) - "I have no idea, Ambes."
(Spark, ], level 12, ) - "It was cool though."
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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