Before going off to see the Resistance, I upgrade my weapons downstairs for 1600 each...
Chain Whip to Flail of Hope
Claymore to Excalibur (!)
Rising Sun to Red Cleaver
Now to check the weapon stats and effects here...
Excalibur fits the bill of "holy sword" as it's strong against evil and undead enemies! The Flail of Hope also has the same effect.
The Red Cleaver is effective against insects, though.
Entering the HQ, the party looks crestfallen after the disappearance of Dyluck.
Krissie telling us not to give up hope means she has something in mind!
What!? The Emperor now wants a truce between the Resistance!? I am guessing that this might be a trap, knowing how these stories play out.
Krissie: "He's saying he wants peace!"
One of her Resistance members is open to hearing the Emperor out. Krissie sounds a bit optimistic at this move! Another member agrees.
Krissie decides that they'll listen to the Emperor. She offers us to go with her!
Krissie: "After this meeting, your journey will be over!"
The Resistance goes ahead of us.
I restock on more items and equipment.
A lady nearby tells us about the Empire's territories...
So probably Gold City's also part of the Imperial territories.
We exit north to the Imperial Castle.
I climb up to the western staircase, where a guard blocking the doorway greets us, telling us the Emperor's expecting our arrival.
The castle shows off its old-fashioned grandeur with some sinister architecture around the entrance.
Inside, it looks really gloomy...
The standards and the blue carpet aren't even trying to cover up the gloominess...
There's two staircases here. The guards blocking the west staircase point us east...
We continue the climb...
...to a stray room with a door.
We head inside...
I knew it!
There's a huge banquet set up in the hall, but no one's seated! In the far side of the room...
...there's the Emperor, in a suit of armor!
The guards surround us!
The Emperor vanishes!
The guards take us!
The Emperor's evil laughs echo as we get taken into a jail cell!
Krissie: "Oh! Emperor Vandole is a dog."
Speaking to a guard, he lets the party go! Hero demands that he let the Resistance free.
I don't think he's wanting to do that, Hero...
The guard shoves the party down a huge hole!
Into another Mantis Ant monster!
It's a Metal Mantis!
Hero's Excalibur isn't doing the trick here...I have Hero and Max swap weapons.
Metal Mantis unleashes a Fire Beam!
The Metal Mantis has no weaknesses, but he's a big leaper!
This boss keeps KO'ing Max!
Now he does a little dance and casts Gem Missiles on all of us!
The Metal Mantis now defends himself!
After one more Air Blast the fireworks begin! What an easy fight!
Let's see what our reward is: a Glove's Orb!
I see a platform or a teleporter leading up to the cells...
We made it back up, where a little yellow guy west of the teleporter awaits!
Nothing north, but I see a chest in the center of the room west of here...
We head down and get its contents: only 1000 gold!
Now we meet sludgy green eyed monsters called the Embermen! I can't tell whether they have two or one eyes though...
Up the stairs we go...
...and we're back at the prison cell!
Pressing the button on the right, I free the Resistance!
Krissie tells us the guards ran off to find reinforcements!
The statue knights flanking the door outside are Armored Men!
We trek down the stairs to the front of the castle!
It turns out they're not fans of fire magic...
We fight our way to the east wing of the castle...
Inside, there's a trio of Armored Men and a button that I think opens the cell ahead.
Pidge is now at level 3 with the Spear!
I switch her weapon to the whip.
The door ahead has two treasures: an Axe's Orb, and a Whip's Orb! They're also monsters-in-a-box, as Armored Men pop out after we open the chests!
If these are the best soldiers the Empire has to offer...
Inside the main hall, we have more enemies to take care of!
A Dark Ninja in red's here too, hmm?
We go up to the western staircase this time...
These doors must go to the Emperor's throne.
I turn back to the empty dining hall to recover, and check if there's anything I missed...nothing here.
Beyond the double doors...
We're now in an assembly or council hall of sorts, where two Dark Ninjas are holding up mirrors to hide themselves!
After fighting the ninjas, I press the button to reveal a door forward!
We avoid the ninja in the next room and go up the stairs.
So this is probably the living quarters we're in...
More Imperial tin men are around...
These guys are quick to dodge our attacks!
After speeding up Hero, Pidge is now leveled up to 2 in her earth magic!
Another set of guards to take care of, and another flight of stairs...
It seems we're back in the prison area of the castle...or not.
Hmmm, which warp point should we take?
I have to choose carefully since one of them might lead us back...
I go to the warp glyph from the east hall, leading us to the west part of the room.
I circle around to the west warp glyph...
...which push us back!
After taking care of the ninja nearby, we cross forward and head into the double doors ahead (the warp glyph doesn't stop us this time, fsr)...
...and into the throne room!
The Emperor and his minions minus Thanatos are present.
After the faint praise, Geshtar begs the Emperor for one more chance to take care of us!
Emperor: "...Why not? Finish them up and come to the palaces."
Everyone vanishes, save for Geshtar.
I feel a boss fight coming...
Geshtar, you have none!
And we get transported to the castle roof!
Other than the beautiful view beyond, we're now stuck with...
...another knight in a motorbike!
He temporarily KO's Hero and Pidge as he rides off to the other side of the roof!
I have Pidge speed Hero up, and as soon as he gets the enchantment, the biker knocks him unconscious again!
The Mech Rider speeds himself up too!
The Gem Missile seems to work on him, though!
The battle continues as we go left-to-right on the roof!
I switch Hero to the whip since the bow and arrow don't seem to work.
After speeding up Hero, his attacks against the boss connect more!
I also have Max slow down the rider, though I'm not sure that seemed to affect him...
The Mech Rider has new tricks in his arsenal as well: a Wave Cannon!
We've got him cornered for now...
He fires his second salvo, making its mark on Hero!
But after one Gem Missile, the fireworks show begins for the Mech Rider!
We get a Javelin's Orb!
But Geshtar, not happy that his second Mech Rider failed him, decides to destroy the castle!!
Hero: "We're finished!"