Previous Part: Darkness and Light

Storyline text and attempted translations from...


Kakkara Environs

Let's give Charon's Ferry another try. After securing power from the Light Seed, we find the ferry attended by what appears to be a Porobin Foot.

And functionally is. Weapons pass right through it, for whatever reason, but if you get close enough for targeting without stepping onboard, magic can kill it. This has no meaningful effect; the ferry activates on approach and will still work as usual.

: Greetings......
 Welcome to Charon's Ferry......
 Going to the Moon Temple......
: Inside the temple is endless space......
 Don't blame me if you get lost...
Welcome to Karon's ferry.
Next stop: Moon Palace.
There's a lot of nothing
in the palace. Don't get
: It's dangerous to rock the
 boat, so keep still...
The boat's a bit unsteady.

After a short wait, the ferry reaches the far dock.

Charon: I'll wait here for you......
 assuming you come back safe...
KARON:I'll...wait here!

月の神殿 Moon Temple MOON PALACE

The Moon Temple is just ahead. Here we find a new monster, the Siren Grell (Marmablue), which is a floating jellyfish-like creature that likes to cast Absorb to steal MP. With any luck, they'll target The Boy, who doesn't have any to begin with. Inside, "Roses and Spirits", the sad town music, plays instead of anything you'd normally expect in a Mana temple, and there's just a nondescript starfield instead of a floor or other architecture. A U-shaped formation of purple flames marks the exit. The starfield loops forever in all directions, and there's little in the way of landmarks to help navigate. Siren Grells also appear here and there.

After wandering for a while, we come across a crystal orb. This one responds to Will o' Wisp's magic, and there's only one spell in that category that can even target the orb. One Saint Beam (Lucent Beam) later, the endless starfield fades out to be replaced with a more traditional temple interior, with violet flames and magenta stained glass. "Prayer and Whispers" plays, and the starfield area will no longer appear when trying to enter the temple.

To reach the orb quickly, just go up until you reach a Siren Grell, then left until you reach another, and the orb is just above that one.

The next room is the inner sactum already. "Eternal Recurrence" plays inside. The seed rests on its altar, and a glowing figure stands in front of it.

I am the moon spirit Luna. Long
have I awaited your arrival.
Now, I shall lend you my power.
Mana is rapidly being lost from
the world. Let us hurry!
LUNA:I, Luna the moon
 spirit, have awaited you.
 So sad this place has
 grown...but enough!
 Take with you my powers!
 GO! Mana is fading...
   精霊ルナの力をえた!    Gained the spirit Luna's power!   Gained Luna's powers!

The Girl gets a spell that boosts attack power at the expense of evasion, one that guarantees critical hits for the next few attacks, and a saber spell that gives life leech (just be careful not to hit any undead/demon enemies with it). The Sprite gets Absorb. Also two other oddball spells with little practical purpose, but Absorb by itself is more than worth it, giving The Sprite effectively unlimited MP in the field. Just don't cast it on incorporeal enemies.

"Prayer and Whispers" now plays, and all that's left to do here is to gain the seed's power. It reacts much as the others did, its glow a bright yellow:    

 種子と聖剣が共鳴した!  The seed and Holy Sword resonated!  Received the Seed's power!

Mana Energy is now 7.

The monsters outside the temple remain, curiously. Flammie won't come pick us up here, so we need to take the ferry back.

Charon: Oh, leaving already?
 Such a rush you're in......
KARON:Leaving so soon?
カロン「またおいで‥‥ Charon: Come again...... KARON:Come again!

From this point on, I recommend leveling The Sprite's spells in the field, draining magic from enemies as needed. For The Girl, my preference is to head to the Wind Temple, where there's quick and convenient restoration right there in what's technically a combat area, giving full magic experience.

For anyone who may be struggling with the Moon Temple, Charon also offers a hint upon leaving without solving the puzzle:

: From the looks of things,
 that didn't go very well......
: This apparently used to be called
 a "planet arium" long ago......
 but it's not actually that big......
: There ought to be a crystal orb
 somewhere. You should have
 tried searching carefully......
 You don't look too happy.
 This is just an ancient
 Look carefully, and you'll
 find a crystal orb...

Having ぷらねたりうむ (planetarium) set off in brackets and written in hiragana instead of the standard katakana representation (プラネタリウム) is suggestive of parroting a word as a special term without understanding its significance.

マンテン山 Manten Mountain Lofty Mountains

Another temple with no sign of a sage. Let's try back here once more.

: Hey! Keep out!
 His Sageness is away.
『No way!
: Sage Jach has gone to the
 Tasmanica Republic.
 An easy trip on his flying carpet!
: What? The Republic? It's the coastal
 castle a little ways west of here.
JEHK:Go away!
 The Sage is out!
All:What luck...
JEHK:Sage Joch has left
 for Tasnica. The Republic's
 to the west of here.

We probably should have seen that coming. Is the sage ever here?

タスマニカ共和国 Tasmanica Republic TASNICA

After we secure power from the Moon Seed, soldiers no longer block the entrance, and what's more, a familiar figure awaits us inside.

 みんなも みちがえるほどだよ。
「いま てわけしてさがしている
Gemma: [BOY]!
 You've really toughened up!
 Almost beyond recognition.
[BOY]『What's going on?
Gemma: Well, a spy from the Empire
 has infiltrated the castle.
: We're in the process of splitting up
 to search. He's said to be out for
 the king's life. You be careful, too!
 I hardly recognized you!
[BOY]:What's up?
JEMA:There's an Imperial spy
 in the castle. He's after
 the King! Beware!

Gemma wanders off on his own, leaving us with a number of useless soldiers.

「スパイはどこだ!? : Where's the spy!? Where's the spy?

If he's after the king, maybe the throne room? The castle has a relatively intricate layout, but it's fundamentally just a big loop, with a bedroom and the throne room through doorways from a large chamber with a wide carpeted stairway. The king is inside, with a pair of slightly less useless soldiers.

へいし「国王をおまもりするのだ。 Soldier: We'll protect the king. GUARD:I'm watching the King.

Everything seems fine until we approach the king.

 ムッ!さては スパイだな!?
King: ......and who are you?
 Mh! You must be spies!
 Spies! Help me!
Soldier: Come along quietly!
 How dare you target the king's life!
King: Aiiee, what are you doing!?
 Kill them, already!
KING:Who are you?
 You must be spies!
[BOY]:Wait a minute...
GUARD:Silence, spy.
KING:Take them away!

Well, that escalated quickly. Gemma enters before anything else can happen.

Gemma: Wait! You're not the king!
 Look, he has no shadow!
 He's not the king..!

In a bit of lack of attention to detail, the king (?) does, in fact, have a shadow throughout the scene. The game may not be able to remove it.

The king (?) turns away.

: ......ku, ku, ku, that's Gemma for you!
 My plan was to possess the king and
 surrender to the Empire outright...
: But now that I'm exposed, I'm not left
 with much choice. Take that!
KING(?):Ha! Using the king,
 I could have ruined this
 But...I've failed.
 Take THIS!

Gemma and the soldiers vanish.

『What have you done with them!?
: Ku ku ku, they're probably wandering
 around by the castle entrace for now.
: That's time enough to eliminate the king!
『As if we'd let you!
[BOY]:What've you done?
KING(?):They're probably at
 the castle entrance!
 Think I'll have YOU
 destroy the king!
[BOY]:Think again!

A boss battle suddenly starts. The Dark Stalker is essentially a souped-up Ninja, with Antimagic (Dispel Magic) to clear our buffs and charge gauge, Ice Saber instead of Flame Saber, the ability to sink into and quickly move around in the shadows instead of ineffectively hiding behind a screen, and a signifigantly higher tendency to swap weapons (which also makes the saber spell mostly pointless).

Dark Stalkers will appear as ordinary enemies not much further into the game, so this battle shouldn't pose any particular difficulty.

Although the king also remains in the room during the battle, there's no point in trying to talk to him...

王は気を失っている‥‥ The king is unconscious...... The king's unconscious.

...until after dealing with the enemy. The boss music fades out.

『Your Majesty! Your Majesty!!
King: ......ugh! ...what the?
 Wh-what happened!? ......
Sir...Snap out of it!!
KING:...oooh...where am I?
 What happened?

After a cut, Gemma and a larger group of soldiers are back in the throne room. "Seaside King" resumes.

Gemma: You've done well! Your Majesty!
 The people with the Holy Sword that I
 have spoken of dealt with the assassin!
JEMA:Well done! Your
 Highness! The Mana Knight
 has beaten the spy!
: Oh, is that what happened!?
 That was a close one......
King: I was quite worried when I heard
 from Gemma that a child had drawn the
 Holy Sword, but you just might......
: Ah, I know, I'll give this to you!!
KING:I can't believe such
 a thing could happen.
KING:I was worried when I
 heard some kid had the
 sword, but now I'm not.
 Allow me to give you this!
剣のパワーが アップ! Sword's power up! Got Sword's Orb!

Gemma has more to say.

 だが [BOY]よ、
Gemma: You've all improved quite a bit!
 But, [BOY], it's still too soon to relax.
: Skill alone does not a hero make!
 The important thing is to attain
 true courage. Understand?
JEMA:You have learned much,
 but you can't rest yet.
 You still have to learn
 what true courage is.

Everyone nods.

: The Empire has begun to move, to the point
 of targeting the Republic's king directly.
 They're close to reviving the Mana Fortress!
: I must set off at once to hinder the
 Empire's movements wherever I can.
 You all need to hurry, too.
: Meet Sage Jach as soon as possible,
 and attain true courage! Stay strong!
 If the Empire is being this
 aggressive, it means they
 almost have the Fortress.
 I'm off to fight the Empire
 wherever I can.
 You must now find the Sage
 Joch. From him you'll learn
 true courage.

He leaves. Might as well talk to everyone.

King: Gemma travels all over the world
 to continue research on the power
 of Mana.
KING:Jema's studying the
 power of Mana.
: The Dark Stalker......he must be
 quite a skilled wielder of the
 dark sword......
Something evil about that
Dark Stalker...
: Tasmanica Republic and Pandora
 Kingdom in the Gaia Lowlands are
 allied nations.
The Republic and Pandora
are allies.
: Our country was originally a naval power,
 but Mana phenomena have made the
 seas too stormy to set sail.
: Instead, we're using the land-based
 Sandship in the Kakkara Desert to keep
 watch on the Empire's movements.
 We used to have a strong
 navy. But now only our
 sandship is in service.
: Sir Merelia had a simply terrible
 reputation as a knight captain,
 but lately he's been a changed man.
Meria's really making a
name for himself.
: We're keeping our eyes open so no
 more imperial spies can infiltrate us!
No more Imperial spies'll
get in here!
: Sir Gemma used to be the leader of
 the knights, but he gave up the title
 of his own accord.
: It must have come as a shock when
 his rival, Sir Serin, passed away in
 the previous war.
Jema was the commander of
the King's troops. His best
friend was the hero, Serin.
When Serin fell in battle,
Jema stepped down and never
fought again...

With the immediate crisis over, soliders throughout the castle are back on standby, and a number of civilians have also appeared out of somewhere. Some have interesting backstory or help fill us in on what's going on in the world now.

: Damn that Vandole, aiming for His
 Majesty's life! That's inexcusable!
The Emperor's after our
: Is a war going to break out? We're on the brink of war.
: It seems the emperor has left his castle.
 Are they finally making their move?
What's the Emperor up to?
: Even His Majesty himself admits to
 Sir Gemma's preeminence.
: He made a fine rival for Sir Serin, the
 legendary knight who played a large
 role in the great war 15 years ago.
Jema's still the realm's
finest warrior.
His only equal was the
legendary warrior, Serin.
: Lemurian Castle is like a big city. This castle's like a big
: After Sir Serin let the people take refuge
 in the castle during the war 15 years
 ago, everyone ended up living here.
Serin, our hero taught us to
live in the castle. We all
moved in 15 years ago.
: A legendary ancient continent is said
 to be sunken beneath the coral reef.
: The Empire's objective is apparently
 to make the continent surface.
: The seeds in the various temples
 act as a seal on it.
A sunken continent rests
under the coral.The Empire's
trying to raise it.
Only the world's Mana seeds,
which seal the continent,
stand in their way.
 やぼうを そししなければ!
: We must keep the Empire's ambitions
 of world conquest in check!
We'll smash the Empire!
: The Empire can attack, but this castle
 won't go down quick or easy!
The Empire'll never take
this castle!

Others react to us directly, though only the first line seems like it might be important.

: ......I feel as though I've seen your face
 before...... is it just my imagination?
Hey, haven't I seen you
: You saved the king?
 Wow, that's so cool!
Hey big boy! Heard you
saved the King..!
Girl: Ooh! It's a little shrimp!
[SPRITE]『Mh! You're more of
 a shrimp than I am!
GIRL:A tiny little sprite!
[SPRITE]:YOU'RE the tiny one.
: Yay, it's the Holy Sword hero
 peoples. Yay!
Hey everybody, it's the
Mana Knight! Hey!

And one is a victim of inadequate proofreading in the English version:

: This is the busiest place in the castle! You're in the heart of theca

In the same room as the above is an invisible passage in the southeast of the main area that leads around the edge of the room. A few other areas have passages similar to this, but this one is unique in that it actually goes somewhere, to a merchant on the eastern side of the bridge above.

Curiously, although the Tortoise Mail and Gold Bracelet the merchant offers aren't sold anywhere else, neither of them is even the best stuff sold here, and what you should already have from the Gold City outclasses his entire inventory. The bracelet at least provides protection against petrification, for what it's worth.

Speaking of local curiosities, the game has an unused line (part of an unused event that would have fully restored the party and offered a save prompt):

Instead of an inn, have Tasmanica's
specialty, the Fizzy-Fizzy Drink!
Just a sip will revitalize you!
Drink this medicine!
It'll fix ya right up!

We'll finish out the area with a soldier found near the entrance.

「マナの力が共にあらんことを‥! : May the power of Mana be with you...! Mana's power is waning...

The mistranslation is understandable; あらん (aran) looks like a negative form of a verb. However, あらんことを (aran koto wo) is a rather ceremonial-sounding equivalent to ありますように (arimasu you ni), using a fairly uncommon archaic volitional form. This line calls to mind similar religious blessings, like 神の御加護があらんことを (kami no go-kago ga aran koto wo, may God/the gods bless/protect/favor you). An even closer parallel is the line フォースと共にあらんことを (FOOSU to tomo ni aran koto wo), the Japanese rendition of "May the Force be with you" from Star Wars.

マンテン山 Manten Mountain Lofty Mountains

Note that you must finish the Darkness Temple before this scene will occur. As I previously mentioned, it's an interesting bit of non-linearity in the storyline. The Light Temple, Moon Temple, and Tasmanica events chain into each other in that order, but the Darkness Temple has no preconditions beyond being able to reach it, and isn't required for anything until this scene. If you've been putting it off for whatever reason, you'll just be told the sage is there until you clear it.

It's starting to seem pointless, but we should probably check back here once more.

: Hey! Keep out!
『He's not here again!?
: Sage Jach is in the sage's cave
 on the mountain.
 A short walk for ground-crawlers!
JEHK:Hey! Get out of here!
[BOY]:Not in, AGAIN?!
JEHK:His Sageness will
 see you.

The sage's cave... as in... here? Is this some kind of joke? A wizened old man with a fancy staff and long gray head and facial hair appears.

「ワシはそのでしの ジーコ。
: Look, the old man over here
 is the Great Sage Jach.
: I am his disciple Zico.
JEHK:Before you sits his
 reverence, Joch!
 I'm his desciple, Jehk.
(はい いいえ)
Jach: ZXYNDRA, QR...
Zico: Master Jach speaks an
 ancient language.
: To translate, a corridor of trials
 for the heroes lies beyond.
: So, if you can overcome what
 lies in its depths, you will
 attain true courage.
: Give it a try?
 (Yes   No)
JEHK:Master speaks in the
 old tongue!
 Allow me!
 You must undergo a test.
 Conquer the ones within,
 and you'll find...courage.
 Will you try?
   (Yes  No)

We'd better agree. Declining does nothing except making us listen to that again when we're finally ready to continue.

: Righto, you take care, now!  Right. Good luck...

A passage deeper into the cave opens up to the side. Aside from a few Siren Grells, the passage introduces two new enemies. The Grenade Bomb (Nitro Pumpkin) may cast Sleep Flower, Burst, or Countermagic (Wall), and also has uncommonly high defense power, making it abnormally difficult to kill, though it isn't especially dangerous otherwise. The Shapeshifter (Shape Shifter), on the other hand, can turn into any of several different enemies, some of which don't otherwise appear until after we have significantly better armor, and can inflict frightening amounts of damage at this point.

A party wipe at any point during the trial does not result in a game over, but instead returns us to the sage.

Zico: Gah hah hah, what's this?
 You're such weaklings!
: Even His Sageness says your
 training is yet lacking. Better
 try again some other time!
JEHK:What's wrong with you?
 Your training is not yet
 complete. Try again!

The path is fairly linear, though it has a few short side branches that dead end. You'll need to use the Axe repeatedly to cut through stalagmites, and the Whip once to cross a gap about halfway through. Given how problematic the enemies here are, it may be best to just rush past them and to the far end as quickly as possible. Some of the Shapeshifter's transformations may drop advanced armor, but I'm not convinced they're worth the trouble.

Zico: Now, it's finally time.
 You pass if you win against them.
 Good luck.
JEHK:It begins. Win, and
 you pass the test...

Suddenly, we're attacked by... ourselves? Sort of, anyway. They have a different, more grimdark sort of coloration so that it's easy to tell them apart, but otherwise look the same, act much the same as computer-controlled characters, and have versions of the same starting weapons. They'll even use an onslaught of the same charged weapon attacks we can use, but that's all. No magic or anything similar. Speaking of which, even our most powerful magic barely scratches them, so we'll have to use weapon attacks, too.

Twinkle Barrier (Lucid Barrier) trivializes the battle, and with good armor, that might not even be necessary to keep them from doing any damage. And although most magic can't hurt them directly, Energy Ball (Moon Energy) works nicely to add damage indirectly by ensuring critical hits. Additionally, Evil Gate can hurt them, because it ignores magic defense, but its high MP cost makes it suboptimal.

Each doppelganger, upon defeat, nods as though in approval as it fades away. Leaving after overcoming all three returns us directly to the sage's chamber.

『We finally beat ourselves!
 Huh? Where's Master Jach?
We won! Huh? Where's Joch?

The old man is indeed gone. Zico steps forward.

Zico: ......well done. The path ahead will
 be difficult indeed if the three of you
 do not join your hearts as one.
JEHK:Well done! When you
 put your hearts together,
 nothing can stop you!
: The essense of the Holy Sword will show
 its strength naturally when courage,
 wisdom, and love become one......
 You will master the Sword
 by joining courage,
 knowledge and love.
: I am the real Jach.
 That old man was just an illusion.
 I am Joch. The old man was
 an illusion.
『What!? Then you could have
 just helped us sooner!
[BOY]:Why didn't you help
 us SOONER?!
Jach: Yes, but I have little doubt that you
 could not possibly have overcome
 yourselves as you were at the time.
: You would have been unable to accept
 my words as more than mere words,
 failing to understand their import.
JOCH:You weren't ready yet.
 Your ears could hear,
 but not your heart.
: I have been waiting for you to grow,
 and waiting until your awareness of
 yourselves as heroes had been born.
 I waited for you to find
 your inner strength.
: Now, go. Emperor Vandole is making
 his move to bring the continent on
 the ocean floor to the surface!
 Go, now. The Emperor seeks
 to raise the sunken land...
: The continent where the Mana Fortress
 sleeps lies beneath the Mana Temple of
 Wood, found on a small coral island.
 Atop the coral you'll find
 the Tree Palace. Below lies
 the Mana Fortress.
: It seems that its barrier has just
 been breached by something evil.
 Hurry! There's no time!
 Something evil seeks the
 seals. HURRY!

He heals the party at this point. Well, that settles our next destination, at least.

木の神殿 Wood Temple TREE PALACE

The barrier that previously blocked entry is gone, and inside we find Emperor Vandole with Shiek and Faunach.

: Ku, ku, ku, I thought you were
 about due to arrive. But I won't
 let you interfere!
EMPEROR:So glad to see you!
 You're going to like this.
: The ancient continent said to have sunk
 long ago will surface once we break
 the seals of all the world's temples!
 The ancient continent will
 surface once I've broken
 all the palace seals.
: The seals of temples across the world
 are already broken. This will be the last.
 Then the Mana Fortress will be revived!
 Once I break this last
 seal, the Mana Fortress
 will rise!
: It's a shame I won't be able
 to show you. Ku, ku, ku...
 Now then, who will handle this?
 Too bad you won't be
  Who wants the job?

He looks at the other two. The one with the deep purple color scheme steps forward.

Shiek: Your Majesty, please leave
 them to me! Go on ahead to the
 altar with Faunach!
SHEEX:I owe them one
 since the Republic!
 Leave it to me!

Emperor Vandole and Faunach continue ahead, leaving Shiek to confront us alone.

: In the Tasmanica Republic, you
 proved to be quite a hindrance!
『That Dark Stalker from then!?
 You're the Dark Stalker?!
: But you are no match for me transformed!
 Behold my true power!
SHEEX:Behold! Have a taste
 of my true power!

The scene shifts into a featureless square boss arena, and "Crisis" starts up as usual. Shiek has apparently turned into a giant monsterous... something... with an enormous toothy maw on the top of a globular body supported by two spikey legs that end in sizable tripod-like feet.

Shiek: Haaa, ha, ha! Mere children
 cannot hope to defeat we who have
 gained the powers of the netherworld!!
『What!? You mean the emperor, too!?
SHEEX:Ha! The underworld
 gives us its strength.
 I'll squash you!
: But of course! To control the world,
 we made a pact with the netherworld
 and were gifted with power!
SHEEX:The contract we signed
 with the underworld gives
 us control of THIS world!
: And we're reviving the Mana Fortress
 so that no human can possibly
 oppose us!
 To keep humans under my
 control, we're reviving
 the Mana Fortress!
「おまえらはここでねむれ‥‥ : Take your final rest now......  Now your time is over...

If you check the status screen during the battle for whatever reason, you'll find that Mana Energy is now listed as 0, and the seven seeds found so far all display in a dull, lifeless color, presumably to indicate that their seals have been broken. Much like when the Water Seed was stolen, Mana Energy functionally remains 7, so you still get a magic/effect bonus of +49 and can raise magic levels up to 7 as usual.

The Mega Xorn (Aegagropilon) will protect itself from spells with Countermagic (Wall). It can also cast Burst and Sleep Flower for significant amounts of damage and annoyance, respectively, and can get fairly spammy with both. The creature can also leap across the arena or roll around as a ball and cause more trouble that way. Party members will sometimes take damage just by touching the main body, which doubles as its vulnerable point, so long-range weapons are the way to go. Spells will also work after dispelling Countermagic with Antimagic (Dispel Magic), except that the Mega Xorn tends to recast it immediately. It does eventually run out of MP, which of course also disables its other spells, but has enough to start with that it will take a while for that to happen.

I suspect that it has an attack with no visible animation, and that's why touching it sometimes hurts but other times has no effect. In any case, stand back.

As with the doppelgangers, I'd recommend using Twinkle Barrier (Lucid Barrier) to block physical damage and Energy Ball (Moon Energy) for guaranteed critical hits. A steady stream of Antimagic will help keep it distracted while compelling it to waste MP recasting Countermagic. Better yet, The Girl can reliably sneak in a spell right after The Sprite dispels, and by staggering when they cast, The Sprite can follow her spell with Absorb (Magic Absorb) to eliminate its MP more quickly, or an offensive spell for damage. It's Wood element, so has no weaknesses or relevant resistances.

On that note, Mega Xorn uses level 7 spells, so if Shade is below level 7, it will take more than one Antimagic to completely dispel its Countermagic.

『やったー! 『All right! Way to go!
ヤリのパワーが アップ! Pike's power up! Got Spear's Orb!
Shiek: N-no, this cannot be...
SHEEX:I can't believe this!

After the battle, we find ourselves back in the temple where we were before.

Did the boss fight happen in some sort of pocket dimension? With netherworld power involved, it makes as much sense as anything.

『Is the altar above here?
 Let's hurry!
The stage's just above us.
Let's go!

After the battle, an eighth Mana Seed, this one forest green but just as dull and lifeless as the others, appears in the Mana Energy section of the status screen.

Upstairs, we find the altar room, but the seed is already spinning on end.

『The seal is broken!
 Are we too late!?
The seal's melting!
We're not going to make it!

And nothing happens.

『だめだ!共鳴しない!! 『It's no use! They won't resonate!! No good! It's too late!

An anthropomorphic tree appears at the base of the altar.

「きけんよ!はやくにげて! : You're in danger! Flee, quickly!   Get out of here, NOW!

"Soul of the Night" begins playing as we approach the tree.

: I am the wood spirit Dryad......
 The seals of all the seeds in the
 world have now been released.
: The continent sleeping beneath this
 temple will rise shortly! Please, get
 away from this island at once!
I am Dryad, the tree spirit.
The seals on the World's
seeds have been broken...
DRYAD:The continent that
 sleeps beneath this palace
 will soon rise. Leave now!
『きみはどうするの? 『What about you? [GIRL]:What about you?
Dryad: I was unable to protect this
 temple... I will remain here......
DRYAD:I wasn't able to save
 this palace...I'll go
 down with it!
[SPRITE]『Fool! What good's
 staying here do!? Come with
 us, and protect Mana!
[SPRITE]:Idiot! What will
 that serve? Come!
 Help us save Mana!
Dryad: ......but can the likes of
 me do anything......?
 I can't use much magic......
: My Mana spell has been sealed
 by a man called Thanatos. I'm
 sure I won't be any help......
DRYAD:Thanatos sealed my
 "Mana" magic. I won't
 be of much help...
[GIRL]『Never mind that!
 Come on, let's go!
[GIRL]:Don't worry!
 Let's go!
[BOY]『さあ!はやく! [BOY]『Come on! Hurry! [BOY]:Hurry!
Dryad: ......*sob*...... I don't
 deserve your...... Thank you.
 I'll do what I can......
 I'll do what I can.
 精霊ドリアードの力をえた!  Gained the spirit Dryad's power!   Gained Dryad's powers!

Dryad disappears, and the screen rumbles menacingly.

Whoa! O-oh no!!
It's started surfacing!
We'll escape on Flammie!
Oh, no! It's rising!
Call Flammie!

From atop Flammie, we see a large landmass rising out of the coral reef. The music when flying around has changed to track 28 暗黒星 (Dark Star), an ominous tune that portends war. Now that the continent has settled into place, we can land back at the temple, where "Dark Star" continues playing. It's now on top of a large structure rising out of the ground. Monsters are all around, and Gemma has arrived, too.

 も ぐんたいがかけつけた!
Gemma: [BOY]! You're here!
 The continent on the sea floor where
 the fortress sleeps has now surfaced!
: Troops have rushed to this continent
 from the Republic to secure the fortress
 before the Empire does!
: It seems there's an ancient city underground
 beneath this grand temple. It doesn't look
 like we'll get inside without going through it.
: Emperor Vandole seems to be working
 with the netherworld. There are already
 monsters everywhere, even underground!
: Although it appears the Holy Sword is
 not yet in perfect form, we may need
 its power to stop the emperor......
: We'll stay here to prevent reinforcements
 from the Empire! You head after the
 soldiers that already went inside!
JEMA:[BOY]! The sunken
 continent has surfaced.
 The Fortress is there!
 I've brought troops here
 to keep the Empire from
 taking the Mana Fortress.
 There's an ancient city
 under this Grand Palace.
 We must get into it!
 Emperor Vandole is working
 for the underworld. This
 place is full of monsters!
 Though your sword isn't
 fully powered, you need
 it to stop the Emperor!
We'll fight off the Imperial
troops here. You catch up
with those soldiers!

Trying to use the main entrance is indeed pointless, as the way in has been cut off.

『It's no use! We can't get in now!
 We'll have to look for another
 entrance somewhere else!
We can't go any further!
Look for another way!

Meanwhile, Dryad has given new spells to both The Girl and The Sprite, but each gets only two instead of the usual three.

The Girl gets Countermagic (Wall) to reflect spells (though be warned that it also reflects helpful magic) and Revive (Revivifier) to raise fallen allies. The Sprite gets Sleep Flower and Burst, which isn't a self-destruct spell despite how it works when some enemies use it. Burst has the most raw power of any offensive spell in the game, but can't take advantage of weaknesses, and it will need to be leveled up to reach parity with the spells you've had for longer.

In short, Dryad's spells are very situational, and it's going to take a while to build up their levels. There are reasons to get those levels anyway, though.

水の神殿 Water Temple WATER PALACE

If the Empire raided the world's temples, maybe we should check in on Luka. Sure enough, the seed is spinning on end and there's no sign of her nearby. However, there is a small basement that seemed pointless earlier, and further investigation finds her locked inside a room down there.

『Lady Luka! Are you all right!?
Luka: Oh! What I've been through!
 How utterly outrageous!
: That lot from the Empire showed
 up, shut me in here, and broke
 the seed's seal.
: With the seeds' seals broken
 before the Holy Sword is revived,
 there is nothing we can do......
: Waiting for a miracle to happen may
 be our only remaining choice......
[BOY]:Luka! You okay?!
LUKA:Yes, but what a mess!
 Some Imperial thugs came,
 locked me up, and broke
 the seed's seal.
 You can't restore your
 sword if they break the
 seal you put on the seeds!
 Nothing else for me to do.
 I'm just hoping for a
Luka: I will continue to believe in
 and pray for a miracle...
LUKA:Miracles happen...
 Never give up hope..!

She never does go back upstairs or resume healing and saving, though, and gets locked in again if you leave and come back. Seems like another oversight.

風の神殿 Wind Temple WIND PALACE

It would make sense for something to have happened here, too, but the only difference from before is the seed itself.

However, there is an unused condition lurking in the game data. If the variable that handles event progression in the Wind Temple is set well beyond any value it ever actually reaches, the music changes to "Holy Intrusion" and the old sprite gets different dialog:

H-how terrible, the Empire's
monsters are inside the temple!
The Empire sent monsters
into the palace!

Even by modifying the variable, though, that's all that happens. Anything more was either removed or never implemented to begin with. The other five temples just have their seeds in the unsealed state, without any lingering unused events at all, though they're all unoccupied anyway, so that's more understandable.


Other than the sage's trial, this whole chapter of the story feels weirdly abrupt and abbreviated. If armor progression is any indication, you were originally meant to go to Tasmanica after Mandara but before reaching the Gold City, so I could imagine seeking their help to breach the island. Possibly to reach the Moon Temple, too. Perhaps there would have been some forced back and forth, similar to the Salamander and Fire Temple event?

This is wild conjecture based on very little, but what if it went something like this: You first try to reach the Light Temple and fail to get very far, but find Wisp along the way. At that point, you're redirected to the Moon Temple, and have to convince the Sandship to ferry you across the Celestial Sea, or else stow away as it goes there on its own. After securing the temple, the Sandship receives an emergency message to return to Tasmanica, and brings you along. Then a more fleshed-out version of the Dark Stalker event occurs, and poses more of a threat thanks to happening earlier on. As thanks, and because Gemma is no fool, Tasmanica then helps you break into the Golden Isle, and Tasmanica's armor actually comes in handy instead of being outclassed before you can even get it.

Speaking of Tasmanica, early screenshots and promotional material despict a drastically different version of it, with around twice as much island, a walled town outside the castle itself, and some surrounding wilderness areas besides. It seems that housing everyone in the castle was another last-minute handwave.


After that, the main point of uncertainty is when you would have been given the ability to fly. Right before the sage's trial? As a reward for clearing it? It's possible the aerial escape from the Empire was what got you airborne all along, but maybe it was originally meant for the Golden Isle. Or perhaps the events at the castle would have come after a successful raid on the island, giving the anti-Imperial forces a victory to make the sham peace talk seem more plausible.

That would also make the Empire going around breaking all the seals fit into the timeline of events more cleanly. Recall that when confronting the Emperor in his castle, he says they're heading to the temples, but nothing actually comes of that until quite some time later, after overcoming the sage's trial. It would make more sense for the castle encounter to come just before the events in the Wood Temple instead, perhaps with some side trips to attempt to stop them elsewhere first, which would also make Luka being locked up in the basement more meaningful and explain the traces of unused events at the Wind Temple.

To be continued...

Previous Part: Darkness and Light

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