Before we continue, one more banter to start things off.
Music: Beneath the Surface
Are you worried for the lad?
Of course. He's putting himself into danger, all for my sake.
He swore he would pay his debt.
I know, but...
His pride wouldn't stand for owing me anything, that's for sure. I just hope he doesn't get himself hurt.
...As do I. But whether you fret or not, he will do what he has set his mind to.
Tressa is concerned Ali might get himself in danger again, but Olberic has a point that there's not much point worrying about it when there's a job at hand.
I finally unlock the last two Divine Skills I'm missing. Bifelgan's Bounty is garbage, but Draefendi's Rage is really damn good.
As usual, going low-level, which means Therion and H'aanit. Primrose still has a banter to go through, but even then she's pretty low herself at this point.
The Grandport Sewers are, well, sewers.
I luck out and get a whopping two encounters this entire dungeon.
Even better, I land a 25% chance and grab a new foe.
Unbroken, but still, not great damage. Of course, I don't really have Tressa geared for ElemAtk. Regardless, I'd rather use her runes and save her BP for stuff like Hired Help or Donate BP.
The Legion Dagger isn't as strong as the Viper Dagger we have, but it's still a solid secondary dagger, and gives a sizeable Evasion boost, so I'm definitely not complaining when dagger has been one of my weaker weapon groups as of late.
This gives slightly over 100 to both defenses, with the usual evasion hit. It's a solid all-around late-game shield, outclassed a bit by a couple others but it's still gonna get some good use from me.
And this polearm is the fifth-strongest in the game and a large upgrade from our current gear with its 262 PhysAtk and large Crit boost. Very good find, and a solid haul in general for a dungeon.
This dungeon is pretty short for a Chapter 4 one, so let's get to the action.
Ugh... What a useless book. And to think I wasted all that precious time looking for it...
Music: Pure Evil
Don't tell me. You came to get the notebook back.
I told you to forget about it.
Important, you say?
Who wrote this book? Where did he or she come from?
Ignorance is bliss, little girl. Trust me.
It's been with me on my whole journey! It--
Save me the sob story, kid.
It's useless to me anyway. And because you're so attached to it...
Music: For Treasure
You've been nothing but a thorn in my side, so I'm going to nip you in the bud.
You stole my notebook, and now you're going to return it and let me walk away.
Video: Boss - Esmeralda
Music: Battle at Journey’s End
I promise, not all the final chapters have out-of-nowhere bosses introduced at the last minute.
Like the other Chapter 4 bosses, Esmeralda has some unique gimmicks at her disposal.
But first, we buff. I don't know which rune I'll transfer yet, I'm gambling I'll find a relevant weakness by the time it's Tressa's turn again.
Esmeralda is a physical-oriented boss, and she hits pretty hard. The usual strats for physical bosses work here.
Her main gimmick are her colored blades. They do a large amount of damage and will seal something, based on the color. Red seals the Attack command, Blue seals physical skills, and Violet seals magic skills. These last until you break Esmeralda.
At any rate, I do find a Light weakness, so I can gear appropriately.
Also she has a polearm weakness.
Patience is so unfair.
H'aanit's Divine Skill is a powerful bow attack on all foes. She doesn't hit the damage limit like Therion does since Therion's factors in the huge speed boost from the Viper Dagger. It's still respectable damage, though.
Especially with the Light Rune proc.
Patience is so unfair.
Esmeralda can change weaknesses after break, and adds more shields. The only consistent weakness she has, appropriately enough, is Wind.
Five Strikes will do five random physical attacks, and these are just nasty.
Leghold to buy time to rebuild my team.
This time she's weak to arrows.
Her final color blade is Black Blade. Each round, the timer goes down by one. When it hits zero, that character dies.
Breaking her also fixes this.
Eight shields is her max.
And a pretty unlucky roll with Five Strikes. It's OK, I'll manage.
After I get paid, of course.
Her final trick occurs after half health, where Black Blade Rush will inflict a death sentence on the entire party.
Poor H'aanit draws the short straw.
And as a final jerk move, Esmeralda can debuff your party's PhysDef.
She's one of the very few foes to have actual equipment as a steal. In this case, the Rune Knife has weak PhysAtk but good ElemAtk, which is kinda rare for daggers. More flexibility is always welcome.
I break Esmeralda right before Therion's set to die. Of course, this dispels the effect.
And it allows me to deliver the killing blow.
Hehe. I told you not to underestimate me. I'll take this.
Why would you go through so much trouble for a stupid book? It's just an old diary.
I hoped I'd find something to help make my dreams come true.
It seems Tressa has found that one treasure most important to her after all.
Music: Grandport, Center of Commerce
Fine, thanks. And you?
See for yourself.
I heard he was a wanted criminal, so I handed him over to the guards.
You really saved the day, Ali.
Well, that's to be seen. Did you get your book back?
It sounds like the showcase is starting.
Kismet trees are among the rarest in the realm. They're known to bring good fortune in marriage. This doll was made from the trunk of that tree. Alongside it comes a legend:
First the snowdrop gown, then the Nis tiara, and now this? I don't know how Mr. Wyndham decides!
Hah! I wish I had his problems. Instead, some of us have to sell our souls just for a chance at that prize money.
For the case of the various customers, I'm gonna use random sprites since there's no real denoted speaker. The voice samples suggest they're all male, at least.
Hehe. Hope you're not nervous. It's almost your turn. You've only got one chance to win the judge's favor.
This is it for Tressa. It's time to show the Wyndhams a valuable treasure and win over her customer.
...which is why she's going to take a different approach.
You can't be serious.
The eldrite is rare and beautiful, of course. But... I want to offer something my customer desires.
That's the kind of merchant I want to be.
There's something I want to give to Noa. Something I think she could truly treasure.
Hehe. You won't be disappointed.
Music: Grandport, Center of Commerce
After we pick up Ali's pocket change, we trigger the final banter of this chapter.
Are you nervous? Because you look it.
I've never done anything like this before. Not in front of so many people.
Then let me give you a trip, from one who's spent her fair share of time on stage...
Yes. You, the audience, everyone. A fish. And the hall is a vast ocean. Out in the ocean, with so many fish swimming around, no cares [sic] about any particular fish.
Wait... What do you mean, "teensy"!?
Anyway. That's what I do when I'm on stage. Imagine myself as a fish, swimming in the endless sea...
Fish, huh? Well, I'll give it a try... Thank you, Primrose.
Leave it to Primrose to find the goofiest solution to stage fright. It's also nice to see her actually help out Tressa for once.
This way, please.
And now we get to probably one of my favorite cutscenes in this entire game, as it's Tressa at her finest.
Video: An Anonymous Notebook
Here's hoping she won't disappoint.
Today, I brought something very special to me.
Music: Tressa, the Merchant
Sometimes I'd gaze out at the ocean and think to myself...
And then I came across this notebook. It was written by someone whose name I don't know... Someone who traveled across the world and wrote down everything about their journey.
I wanted to explore the world as a merchant and learn the trade as I went. And along the way, I met some unforgettable people.
After I moved onto the next town, I ran into an old acquaintance.
There, he taught me something very important.
Until I finally found it. What's truly precious to me...
I've written all about it here, in these pages.
And just like this nameless traveler allowed me to realize my dreams... I hope that my travels can help someone realize their own.
Tressa had the chance to get to know Noa, and thus knows what she truly desires. All the priceless trinkets and wonders of the world may have value to others, but Tressa believes she has the one item that her customer will truly treasure.
Does she have any idea where she is?
In all my years, I've never seen something so embarrassing...
Someone, get her off the stage.
...This didn't seem to work out as well as Tressa hoped, if the audience's reaction is anything to consider.
...But then, what they think doesn't matter. All that matters is her customer.
Did he just...?
Is he serious?
Pardon me, but... Are you absolutely certain?
I don't go back on my word. Now please, bring me that diary.
It turns out, Tressa nailed what her customer wanted, and has truly proven herself to be a true merchant.
Why did you choose this diary?
You see, my daughter...
Music: Enveloped in Kindness
But I could tell it was never enough. However, when this young merchant stepped onto the stage and spoke of her travels...
When I heard about your journey, Tressa...
My heart never wanted the story to end.
I hope this will suffice for your diary.
My customer has something she can treasure forever. That's more than enough reward for me.
I understand your sentiment, but I can't let you go without recompense.
I'd like to save it for then.
Understood. I'll prepare a memorandum. If you're ever in need of it, please do not hesitate to let us know.
Thank you, sir.
So Tressa is now a billionaire, except she doesn't actually have the money right now. A shame, all the things I could buy...
It feels kind of like a potential sequel hook, but who knows what they're going to do with the next game.
If you don't mind, I...
And I'd love to tell you all about it!
I've made up my mind, Tressa.
Just like you did.
And someday, I'll write my own stories in here. About my own journey.
And much as that nameless author inspired Tressa to start her own journey, Tressa has inspired Noa to do the same.
But what about that nameless author?
I must say, you put on quite the show there.
Thank you, sir.
Hoho, I suppose I should introduce myself. I dedicated many years of my life to creating something...
Mm-hmm. The writer was someone else, though.
Graham Crossford... So he's the one whose travels I've been reading about.
That name should sound familiar, as that's the very same man who saved Alfyn's life as a child. Small world, huh?
He was just about to head off on a journey. He didn't know where his travels would take him. So I told him he ought to keep a record of where he'd been.
But there wasn't anyone else's journey I wanted to hear about as much as his. Writing in a diary comes from the heart... And there was no one with a heart as great as his.
It was like you were in love with that notebook.
If you ever meet Graham, could you tell him something for me?
I don't have the heart to tell him about Graham.
Video: Going Home
Music: Bonds of Friendship
I've experienced so many things on this journey. It was filled with so many moments that can't be contained in a diary. I traveled and traded across the land and met amazing people along the way. And when I stood on that stage, I realized...
I can't wait to see the look on their faces.
How about you, Ali?
My father is waiting for me.
So, who's the better merchant between you two?
I'd like to think I am.
Next time we meet...
Music: Tressa, the Merchant
See, you're like a skystone...
And there goes Ali.
And with that, Tressa heads home.
Video: The Next Chapter
My journey isn't over yet.
She gave me this diary to fill with my own memories.
And someday, I hope to follow in her footsteps.
And that's it for Tressa's story!
Music: Tressa Motif
(Click here for larger version.)
It's time to move on to the next character, so go vote for them!
Next time, we explore the massive (and lucrative) city of Grandport, do a side story or two, and maybe even go back to some side dungeons I've skipped earlier. Depends really how I want to structure the next set of updates. Until then!