Previous Thread:http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/2531177/Archive:http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Joker%20QuestEquipment FAQ (Updated with GOLGOTHA):https://pastebin.com/9wTGPTcqOblivion's Husk (Updated with SIGNS OF THE RIGHTEOUS):https://pastebin.com/5Bs9QgfYPlayer List:http://pastebin.com/rRSM6LgWEpisode Guide (All credit to Watashiwa & an unknown Anon):http://pastebin.com/xuZNynTMYui IF scene (Adult content):http://pastebin.com/8CSEVSXBTwitter: https://twitter.com/JokerQuestOPRecap:F̣̭̳o̩͔͞r̹̰ ̭̯̥̼̱̖̕i̼̥͍̥̣̩̯͡n͕͙ͅ ͈̻͍t̳̤͕̳̙̤h̙̟̞̮͕a̤̹̗͙̪t ͈̭̦͜s̸̖ḽ̷̙̣̞̰ee̡̬͖̯͓̰͔p̷͈̱̫͈̙ ̤͢o̠f͎ ̮̯̼͓͍͈͜d͘e̮̺̩̰a͙̖̘̝tͅh̗̞̩͎,͎͇̜͕͈ ̢wh̥̘at̷̤̠ ̪̬d͍̮̠̠̝̱̪r̯̖̳͇e̺a̗m̮̖͕̙̱s͚̼͓͈̰ ̰͍̮͉̻̰m̳̭̫̘̝͍̱a̯̗y̵͇ c̳̳͢ͅͅo̴̜̟̪̺̼͔m̞̹̻̯e̶̱̠̫̩?̹
>>2613202Aww yeah, time for RED JOKER, CHOP!
After the first few years, there were some who no longer sought to escape, who saw the opportunity that arose from their circumstances. They existed in totality, in forms no longer subject to the grinding passage of time. With an unlimited amount of time to tinker, to experiment, as they wandered out into the dark.And so they did. Living in total darkness, never sleeping, never resting, they changed - growing strange, growing wyrd. Lost on the plains of endless night, there were those you found that believed themselves to demons. They said that they had come in from the outer dark, that the humans who had once occupied their bodies were all gone now. And then they tried to kill you.**The gates of the city have been breached. The vast, burnt-out hulks of the ruined war machines have been dragged from the shattered gates, for the predators to enter in state.There are more of them than you would have assumed, at first - wolf-shadows in the smoke, beneath the flame-light of the tortured sky. The eerie corospant that flickers against the city's highest towers has kept the encroaching gloom at bay, but when night finally falls - as it must - there may never be a sunrise to dispel it.You hear sounds that might be brazen horns, brassy, gleeful, blown without the need for breath. The pall of debris from the warhead's detonation lingers, like a storm-front, distant echoes of the vast explosion rolling through the streets."Jesus," Kazuya breathes - His voice fighting not to shake. "...I thought we got *all* of them-"SEPIA PRISON's pitiful refuge is a charred remnant, now. The aberrant thing, put to the fire, has collapsed upon itself - it burst and burned, when the Immolator seared into it. But through the mismatched screens that flicker with white static, you can see the reavers gallop into the city on their warped steeds - hear, distantly, the clatter of hooves...And another sound. A worse sound. A scraping scurrying, utterly unnatural, with no mortal analogue.Hands. Thousands of left hands, each one sculpted from metal, from pitted stone, from strange and aberrant materials. They crawl forward, twitching and clenching, a wave of orphaned limbs. Scooping and searching, palms raised - with fingers splayed - as if sniffing the air. (Continued)
>>2613221The reavers have brought their kin. The streets are broad enough for them to ride abreast, and they seem to exult in this: Hooves strike sparks from the flagstones and roads beneath. There is a giddy gaiety to their motions, a kind of delight in ruin - As if it amuses them to be, once again, amongst the comforts of home.All the better to destroy it.You glimpse something that moves on a scuttling spider-chassis of eight legs, great arms thrown wide as if in celebration. It rotates towards what may have been a shopfront, flame units spewing forth vast gouts of flame-And now fire sobs through the cyclopean remains of windows, hot enough to sear through stone, leaping upwards in flickering tongues."There's even more of the fuckers," Daegal says, leaden dread to his words. "-All this, just for us? Why can't the bastards leave us alone?"[ ] "They're bored. We're the entertainment."[ ] "...I don't think they're after us. I don't think they knew the city was here, either."[ ] "It's VOVOID. He's driving them forward." [ ] "You're right. They *shouldn't* be doing this - They know something that we don't."[ ] "No. Look carefully: It's more than just one group. They aren't just after us."[ ] "It doesn't matter. We need to get out, now, before they reach us."[ ] "Search the room. SEPIA was here for centuries, he wouldn't have been idle."[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2613226[ ] "No. Look carefully: It's more than just one group. They aren't just after us."[ ] "Search the room. SEPIA was here for centuries, he wouldn't have been idle."(Great to have you back again, OP!)
>>2613226>[ ] "No. Look carefully: It's more than just one group. They aren't just after us.">[ ] "Search the room. SEPIA was here for centuries, he wouldn't have been idle."Look out for vantage points. If they come in our direction, we could snipe the bigger ones with our railgun.
>>2613226>[X] "They're bored. We're the entertainment.">[X] "Search the room. SEPIA was here for centuries, he wouldn't have been idle."
>>2613226>[ ] "You're right. They *shouldn't* be doing this - They know something that we don't.">[ ] "Search the room. SEPIA was here for centuries, he wouldn't have been idle."
>>2613352>>2613358>>2613363>>2613369> [X] "No. Look carefully: It's more than just one group. They aren't just after us."The group is too large. Larger than your initial pursuers. Vovoid can't have mustered these forces by himself - And not just for you. Through the flickering screens, cycling at irregular intervals, you glimpse stranger sights.Here, frenetic dervishes that whirl through the breached gates, spirals of constant motion. Some of them take flight, spiralling upwards on wings of jetair and flame - raptor-masks glowing with swollen light, arcane technologies or great wings bearing them aloft. You hear, tinnily, hunting shrieks and howls of delight, as they soar between the towers in a ragged flock - Riders on the nightwind, studded with cruel ornaments and cannibalized trophies.There, an orderly procession - quite different from Vovoid's cackling riders - toiling forward beneath ragged banners. A blinded eye, a writhing knot of worms, strange and twisted symbols that send a thrill of nausea coursing through you-"God," Daegal says, thickly. He turns away. "-God, I can't watch this any more..."They have totems with them, the remains of former enemies - or simply victims - rendered limbless and thrust aloft, like broken mannequins. The tremors that shiver through them could be - at a distance - mistaken for the wind, as they twist and writhe in a futile agony that will never end.> [X] "They're bored. We're the entertainment." > [X] "You're right. They *shouldn't* be doing this - They know something that we don't."Yes. But it's not only that.Even if they know who - Even if they know what you are. Two stragglers can't be worth all this. They wouldn't have mustered their forces simply to pursue you to the end, no matter how bitter it might be.Perhaps - Maybe they were already bound for the city. Perhaps you were simply unfortunate enough to be in the way. And yet...It feels like you're missing something. Some crucial piece of the puzzle, something you can't quite place...(Continued)
> [X] "Search the room. SEPIA was here for centuries, he wouldn't have been idle.""Search the...? An - Joker, we have to get out of here-"Kazuya. Hurry.To his credit, he merely hesitates for a moment - And then he's backing away, in the flickering light of the mismatched screens. He swears, under his breath, as he stumbles into one of the adjoining rooms - SEPIA PRISON must have smashed holes in the dividing walls, to make the space entirely his own. The music, far beneath you, is a distant pulse. You can hear the creaking of the high-altitude wind."-What are we looking for-?" Daegal says - He's rummaging through crates, tapping at shelves, scavenging through the debris of centuries with increasing frustration. There's a brittle crash, as he overturns a table - emptying weird baubles and strange technological trinkets across the ground, his pace accelerating with each moment. You kick aside an emptied-out helmet, turned - long ago - into a mournful and hollow skull. You can feel time slipping away, as you rummage. The room is laden not just with the remnants of long-ago kills, but with every kind of inexplicable salvage available - You turn up cracked quartz crystals, drained of all charges. Something that might be a compass, now broken and pointing in no direction in particular. A device that resembles a light bulb, with a hilt shaped to fit a Player's grasp...When you grip it, it lights up, with a pallid blue radiance. A torch, then.There must've been something of a pack-rat in SEPIA's nature, to acquire all this junk-No. That's uncharitable of you. He never gave up hope, not even at the very end. Until the very end, he was still looking for something - anything - that could have helped them.(Continued)
>>2613489The sounds are closer, now. A shadow - so fast it may have been imagined - sweeps across the building's facade. You're beginning to think that this may have been a mistake. There's too much. It's not possible to separate the useless from the curiosities, the unlikely from the simply arcane. If SEPIA had left them here, they must have lacked any immediate use - or they must have eluded his best efforts to put to use.You find a wooden box, a face - sculpted in marble - shuttered within. It may have been a reliquary, a piece of heaven sealed away from the gaze of the unworthy, if not for the extra eyes set within the milky stone."Fuck-!"Odd idols of porphyr, strange and somehow unwholesome to the touch-No. An hourglass, the bulbs so distorted and recurve that - in some places - the ruby sand flows *back*, in open defiance of physics. It looks like it's been shaped from glass, but when your gauntleted fingers tap against it, it rings with the chime of metal-on-metal.A mirror, little more than a fragment of glass set in black steel. When you tilt it, the face you glimpse is an alarming one - It's your face, a face left a world and a lifetime away. The semblance is so lifelike, you reach up involuntarily...Only to discovered the hard, affectless prow of your helmet's visor.No.(Continued)
>>2613535"Joker-"He's found something. You set the mirror down, and turn to face Daegal as he emerges from the side-room, frantic but somehow triumphant. "Look," he says, his gauntlets flexing against something that looks like a sheet of hammered steel - grey, lustreless, somehow filmy. The surface is scarred by gouges that glisten a neon green, etched in oddly regular lines through-Something clicks."-It's a map," Daegal says. "Anon, it's a map. There was a whole *shelf* of these-"He manipulates something, and micro-fine filaments - hair-thin threads of orichalcum - deploy. Like mercury along a channel, a line of light runs along the schematic plan - It reminds you, vividly, of raised veins and swollen capillaries under the skin, bumps and ridges suggesting buildings and streets-But it doesn't make sense to you. You're not sure how Daegal is reading it - how he's understanding it, intuitively. The display simply doesn't register on your mind. You don't think he knows how he understands it, either. [ ] "Can you get us underground?"[ ] "What's the fastest way to the center of the city?"[ ] "Is there an armory? Weapons? Anything we can use?"[ ] "We need some form of transportation, if we're going to stay ahead of them. Can you find anything?"[ ] "Find us the nearest exit out of the city."[ ] "Is there a place we can lie low? Somewhere they won't find?"[ ] "We're taking this one with us. I'll destroy the others."[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2613590>[ ] "Is there an armory? Weapons? Anything we can use?">[ ] "We need some form of transportation, if we're going to stay ahead of them. Can you find anything?"
>>2613590>[ ] "Is there an armory? Weapons? Anything we can use?">[ ] "We need some form of transportation, if we're going to stay ahead of them. Can you find anything?">[ ] "Find us the nearest exit out of the city.">[ ] "We're taking this one with us. I'll destroy the others.""Unless you think we should take another."Let's arm up, maybe find a tank and then get the fuck out of the city.
>>2613604I'm going with this.
>>2613600>>2613604>>2613622He's silent, for a moment - Lost in a fugue of concentration. The edges of the map bristle with gold filgree, becoming gilded, ornate, baroque. Tiny glyphs flicker in Daegal's optics, as he processes the information, amber light glowing where the tips of his fingers make contact with the display.> [X] "Is there an armory? Weapons? Anything we can use?""There's...something." Low, hushed now. "About five blocks away. It's not far - If we hurry, we can reach it on foot-"> [X] "We need some form of transportation, if we're going to stay ahead of them. Can you find anything?"The map shifts, in his grasp. The line of light splits, forks, like circuitry. "Ah, hell-" Kazuya mutters, under his breath. He doesn't sound happy."-Look." He tilts the map so you can see it. It's a confusion of arching lines, some of which come to abrupt ends, with dull nodes along the channel. "Whatever hit this place, it hit it *bad*. There's one route, but...Joker, it only takes us further *in*."He traces the map with a finger, as if trying to will a path into existence. "I don't think it understands me. I'm asking for...I don't know. Vehicles, I guess. But it doesn't seem to recognize that-"> [X] "Find us the nearest exit out of the city.""I...Huh."Kazuya's about to say something, then catches himself. The path becomes a straight channel, diverting only occasionally. "It says - The nearest exit is *forward*. There are gates in the walls, but who knows which ones the bastards are using...If they're advancing, our best bet is to stay ahead until we can find one that isn't blocked." The Joker's Memory pulses, as if in echo. Forward, it seems to murmur. Never stop.It resonates with something here, something within the city's heart. Like a compass's needle, swayed from true north towards a greater source.> [X] "We're taking this one with us. I'll destroy the others.""Yeah. If they get their hands on one...Then we're really in trouble."A pause - Though he's acutely aware that time is running short. "Joker - What's the plan?"[ ] "We hit the Armory first. It's worth the detour."[ ] "We wait for them to pass us, then we'll circle around back."[ ] "We have to stay ahead of them. We have a lead, we better make the most of it."[ ] "We find the nearest gate, then we get out of here."[ ] "No vehicles, then? At least something's still up. We'll get to that station, then we'll take it to wherever it goes."[ ] "We head further in. I think...something *wants* us to go there."[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2613708>[ ] "We hit the Armory first. It's worth the detour.">[ ] "We head further in. I think...something *wants* us to go there."
>>2613708>[ ] "We hit the Armory first. It's worth the detour."[ ] "We head further in. I think...something *wants* us to go there.""The Joker's Memory is picking something up in the center of the city."
>>2613708>[X] "We hit the Armory first. It's worth the detour.">[X] "We head further in. I think...something *wants* us to go there."
>>2613718>>2613727>>2613718Guns, then adventure. Our priorities are straight in the absence of waifus.
>>2613713>>2613716>>2613718>>2613727> [X] "We hit the Armory first. It's worth the detour."> [X] "We head further in. I think...something *wants* us to go there."Daegal draws a rasping fascmile of a breath, one he doesn't need. You can tell - even without words - that he wants nothing more than to be out of this place as soon as possible...But that isn't a solution, merely ignorance of the inevitable.> [X] "The Joker's Memory is picking something up in the center of the city.""It's...It's telling you that? You're sure?" he says - And there's an odd note in his voice. Something that might be fear, something that might be hope. He turns his head, looking to the side...As if weighing something, asking himself if he should-He exhales, static buzzing over his speakers."All right," Kazuya says. "All right.""Just-" Uneasy, now. "...I hope you're right, Joker."He's already moving towards the door, as you make for the distant shelf - the maps, in their unaltered configuration, stacked neatly in place. It occurs to you that these items are irreplaceable; the knowledge of how they were made is long gone, as are the creators.But perhaps it's better this way.CHAGAN's kill-markers glow a toxic green, whorls of emerald fire coiling around your arm. The template of your Triskelion Launchers is etched in the same eerie light, shifting and reconfiguring...Until the blunt smoothbore muzzle of the Havoc Launcher replaces the limb. You take aim, and fire twice. The subsonic thump of Maser Grenades being launched echoes hollowly within the room, as you step out and into the corridor. The brief, blinding flash of radiation fills the chamber in your wake - But by then, there's no-one left to see it.(Continued)
>>2613781The vast towers - alien and familiar at once - cast long, slanting shadows across the streets, like pieces of an interlocking puzzle. The bruised sky sheds a sickly light, as you emerge from Sepia Prison's lonely refuge - the eerie silence that held sway across and above the city shattered at last, by the anti-music of the damned. Even here, you can hear the crackle of flames, the trod of distant feet - As Daegal fumbles with the precious map, looking down at it, their progress brings to mind a fluid: Something dark and glossy, flowing and running, a dark something that finds in every street, every passage and road the quickest unbroken route by which to find their own ends.A shroud of vapour hangs over the city, the foggy aftermath of destruction. Overhead, things wheel and caw - darting between the tilting, teetering shells of buildings. Their bent black girders remind you, unpleasantly, of the gibbet-frames you glimpsed in Sepia's jury-rigged screens...Things creak, in the wind. Crane hoists squeak. Things fall, and flutter softly or land hard, or skitter and bounce like loose rocks in a ravine. It is as if time, so long-denied, has begun to move in this space one more.You recall IXION's frozen moment, sealed like a beetle within amber...(Continued)
>>2613901Distance is uncertain, here. You stay close to the buildings, straining every sense to listen for pursuit. Daegal's Argus Sensor is dimmed to a passive hum, but you can tell that he's frustrated by the maze of buildings - There's too much metal, too much charge, too much distortion. Too much of everything. Even the sounds are far-away, like the echo of someone else's war...You advance, almost blind, into the gloom. Any source of light would be like sending up a beacon, a signal flare. The devastation of all sides is disheartening, adding to the precarious sense that the city totters on the edge of a greater fall than the one it's already endured: Buildings have sagged into each other, or fallen into the street in great rivers of tumbling rubble. All glass has been broken, the joists and beams and roofs turned to dark, barred windows through which anything might peer.It feels like you're being watched."Shit," Daegal breathes, looking up at the ruins of a fallen tower - cutting off the street as surely as an avalanche. You could climb it - But you'd be exposed, out in the open, for the far-off hunters that circle like vultures. He glances at the map as if it's betrayed him."We'll have to go around," he says, glancing left, then right - He nods to you, as he points to a nearby alley. You can tell that he's deeply, deeply unnerved by the fundamental knowledge that you're being hunted, that you're actively being pursued...He manages five steps into the alley, before you're upon him. You pull him into the shadow of a slanting wall, the hum of your armor fading to nothing. For a moment, you think you might have left it too late-But then the first of the crawling hands scuttle past, moving with a spider's skittering gait across the road. Over the Dirac channel:"Shit, I didn't even see-"*Quiet*.(Continued)
>>2613943There, behind their hideous familiars. Shapes - You count four. No, five. Advancing, in loose order, behind a wedge of hands. One is a towering figure, head-and-shoulders above you, a second set of arms protruding from his torso plating - his primary limbs so vast, so buckled with myomer muscle, they push against the ground in an ape's knuckle-walk. υ-GERYON, comes the blurred flicker on your HUD. The one behind it is hunched, with something strange about that ivory silhouette - With a too-long barbed lance in one hand, a grinning skull-faced buckler in the other that it lofts high, shielding a torso that squirms with intricate and obscene carvings. μ-DULLAHAN, your sensors read, fighting to resolve the blurred tangle into decipherability...One more. SAXE CAPGRAST, swathed in a mantle of red. Things squirm beneath violet plating, his helm half-melted, like the blurred faces of a die - suggestive of too many terrible things to process at once. He holds, of all things, a great book.Three of five. You can't see the other two, not yet.[ ] Let them pass by. [ ] Hit them now.[ ] Wait for them to pass, then hit them from behind.[ ] Find another detour. [ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2613999(Gentlemen, I note that - as far you can tell - they haven't seen you yet. They're in the street right next to the alley you've taken shelter in.)
>>2613999>[ ] Wait for them to pass, then hit them from behind.Give them short glimpses on shroud decoys to get them into a choke point, then fire Rubicante's entropic shot and hopefully clip three guys with overpenetration. Followed by EXEC_SWARM, as well as using EXEC_DISRUPT on SAXE CAPGRAST.Then charge with with Golgotha, together with Kazuya, and commence the fight under a FORTRESS MODE dome to keep the sound to a minimum.
>>2613999>[ ] Let them pass by.We don't really have any silent methods of handling this and the moment we make a commotion things will escalate FAST.
>>2614028 If they haven't seen us, DON'T FUCKING ATTACK.
>>2614030>>2613999>Let them pass by, but be ready for a fight. Slip by when they pass.
>>2614034We might also want to go deeper into the shadows and use the same shroud trick we used on the bomb to disguise us as a pile of rubble.
(Gentlemen, my apologies - It's extremely late, and I'm exhausted. However, I'll continue tomorrow at the first opportunity. Good night and God bless - I'll see you again very soon.)
>>2614075To you as well!
>>2614075Seeya soon. And thank you :)
>>2614030>>2614032>>2614034You go still. You do not slow your breathing, or tense in anticipation of discovery - You simply go rigid, a crimson statue. Old instincts die hard. You realize, belatedly, that your free hand is clamped over the mouth grille of Daegal's helm - Though the crackle of a speaker, however muted, would be enough to draw the attention of the stalkers.KOSCHEI draws past, in the street. Something with a glittering constellation of spined shoulders and a necklace of doll's-heads, adamantium bones set in tarnished silver. A death-shroud flutters from the haft of a great flail, the links clattering and rasping as they slither against the ground underfoot.You wait. You stay down and quiet, about ten or twenty longer than feels right. You wait with the patience of a corpse, the patience of stone. And after what seems like an eternity, an eternity in which suns could have been born and gone out again, in which civilizations could have arisen and receded, a last lone silhouette drifts past, black against the grey. From your position, you see little of it - Something illuminated by an awful light that seeps up from its vast gorget, that moves with the landslip rumble of mountains falling.THOUSAND HANDS.The orphaned hands, like spiders, skitter dizzily before it, in its wake. They shuffle and scramble, capering with childlike glee. As it passes, they applaud.The sound of one hand clapping. The sound Daegal makes - over the Dirac channel, mercifully - is filled with such terror, it is barely a human sound. (Continued)
>>2620801But they pass. And then there is silence, nothing stirring beyond the alley - Except for the fog, flowing and eddying, growing thicker by the moment."God," Daegal says, the almost-speech of Dirac communications. "If they'd seen-"He leaves the sentence unfinished. Some things are too awful, perhaps, to contemplate.Kazuya. The map."Wha-"The map.He fumbles with it, as if he's never seen it before in his life, then - And it might be the hardest thing he's ever done - nods ahead. Not much further now.Not much further at all.**The trail takes you past a row of - what might have once been - shophouses, winding through a narrow passage between the towering slabs of rough-hewn monuments. The city's coherence, such as it is, is crumbling: It is as if something within this amaglam of cities past and present fiercely resents the intrusion, and seeks to bewilder the invaders.That, of course, includes you.The path - picked out by the amber light of Daegal's filaments - ends abruptly, before a double-storey terrace house, one of many. It is the most mundane thing you have seen since your descent - to see the walls scarred by eons of erosion, the windows blown-out into pitiless chasms, is somehow disquieting.At your side, Kazuya stiffens - "Oh, no," he says, bleakly. There is distress in those two words, a distress that bleeds through the emotionless rasp of his speakers. He is staring past you, at the number plaque (scarred by still legible) on the front door of the unit."No, no, no...It can't be-"[ ] "What is it?"[ ] "...Is this the place? It doesn't look like an armory."[ ] "What did you see?" [ ] "We have to go in. We can't stay out here."[ ] "Kazuya, what's wrong?"[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2620816>[ ] "What is it?"He recognizes the house, doesn't he?"It might look like a real place, but it isn't. The map pointed here, right?"
>>2620816(My apologies, gentlemen - Today was a full workday, and I'm exhausted. I'll respond tomorrow, once I get back.)
>>2620816>[ ] "What did you see?" >[ ] "We have to go in. We can't stay out here."
>>2620816>[x] "What did you see?" >[x] "We have to go in. We can't stay out here."
>>2620823>>2620829>>2620838>>2620867> [X] "What is it?"He knows this place, but you do not. The numbers on the plaque mean nothing to you - the place no more familiar than any other on the street. > "It might look like a real place, but it isn't. The map pointed here, right?""I...Yeah," Daegal says. "Yeah."But he's not longer looking at the house. He's looking at you - As if he's waiting for something, some cue.He shakes his head - "...Not a real place," Kazuya echoes. "It's not...It's just - Anon, I mean - For a moment I thought it was..."There. That hesitation again, waiting for something from you.> [X] "What did you see?" And now he stares, stricken."You-""...You mean you don't remember?"(Continued)
>>2623176It's our parents house, isn't it?
>>2623176The last word hangs in the air like an accusation, in the empty street. At the edges of perception, beneath lightless street lamps, the fog continues to swirl. The mist is thick enough to conceal anything and everything, as your gauntlet finds the handle, gives it a twist.> [x] "We have to go in. We can't stay out here."The door opens, too smoothly. There is no creak of wood, no screech of rusted hinges. It glides open, as if on oiled hinges. Beyond is a flat, lightless darkness - Like a plane of solidified midnight, the lightless depths of an ocean.You can see nothing of what might lie beyond.Daegal is still standing, still staring. Hushed, now - His body language stilted, almost hostile."Anon..." he says, taking a slow step back. "You really don't know where we are, do you...?"[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2623176> "Of course I do. But it's not really my house, no matter how much it looks like it."
>>2623184"Just what do you expect me to say, Kazuya? No matter what you think this place is, it can't be. This is a different world."
>>2623181>>2623186>>2623202> "Of course I do. But it's not really my house, no matter how much it looks like it."He exhales, a static-laden rasp. A fleeting shudder of relief courses through him, there and then gone. Kazuya passes a hand over his helmet, some of his tension from earlier draining away.> "Just what do you expect me to say, Kazuya? No matter what you think this place is, it can't be. This is a different world.""No, it's not that," he says. "For a moment, I just thought..."Daegal hesitates, then goes on. "-It's just...I'm glad it's nothing. I mean, of course you'd say that. I don't know - I don't know what I was thinking."He looks away, down at the map in his hands. Golden filgree - twisting vines, constellations - blossom at the edges of the hammered steel, as he consults the shifting surface one final time. "...It's through here. I'm sure of it."(Continued)
>>2623226Well this is worrisome. Hopefully getting through it on a lie won't immediately fuck us over.
>>2623226You take a step forward, into the dark-There is a slight thump at the base of your skull, a bass beat in the rhythm of the universe. It reverbrates - Deep and sonorous. Painful. A headache ripples out to encase your skull, your vision shimmers. For a moment, there isn't *one* door in front of you, but a myriad of them-Disorientation twists through you, sharp and sudden. Blue light floods everything.Blink.Fleeting impressions, first-Underfoot - dark green marble. Tall lancet windows of stained glass, weird, writhing light beaming through them. The walls-Around you, huge mechanisms turn and whirr. Brass gears, many meters in diameter, lock teeth with others of their kind, turning in smooth and uniform perfection. Smaller cogs rotate rapidly, humming as they whirl. There is the clatter of iron pistons, copper valves opening and closing with automated regularity-"What-"Daegal's voice sounds very small, in all the vast space. "...How can this be here?" he says. "How can all this-"You grasp, immediately, what he means. The room is vast, a vaulted chamber that extends upwards and outwards into infinity. The ceiling is so high overhead, all you glimpse is the suggestion of humming machinery, oscillating and thrumming with an eternal momentum...It is far, far larger than the house you just entered.(Continued)
>>2623241And before you-There is a towering portal. A gate, black and glossy - framed by chattering machinery, built from blocks of titanic stone. It is the single realest thing in all this swarming emptiness, like an anchor that holds it all together. It is sealed at its centre by a great golden circle, hovering glyphs cycling in a slow, eternal rotation. Right before it sits a raised pedestal, bearing an ornate keyboard of brass and jet - A single glowing screen set beneath the complex, ever-shifting equation."Damn," Kazuya breathes, awed. "That's - That's the way in?"He takes a step forward, eyeing the overlapping tiers of keys and tiles and stranger devices, with the air of a pianist about to begin a recital. "Shit, that's - I don't even know where to..."And abruptly, Daegal laughs. Or rather, the machine approximation of a laugh, as he glances over his shoulder at you."...You know - If we still had that warhead..."[ ] "Can you get the gate open?"[ ] "If only."[ ] "I'd say we put it to a better use."[ ] "No time for that. Step back - I'll use the axe."[ ] "You say that, but I don't think it'd have made a dent."[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2623252>[ ] "I'd say we put it to a better use.">[ ] "Can you get the gate open?">"Maybe I can do something."It being placed in Anon's home shouldn't just be a coincidence. This place might have some intrinsic connection to the Red Joker. See if anything reacts to us, our mark, or the Joker Memory
>>2623252(Gentlemen, my apologies - I need to turn in for now, but I'll continue tomorrow.)
>>2623202>He exhales, a static-laden rasp. A fleeting shudder of relief courses through him, there and then gone. Kazuya passes a hand over his helmet, some of his tension from earlier draining away.Nice save.>>2623252>[ ] "You say that, but I don't think it'd have made a dent.">[ ] "Can you get the gate open?""Work your magic on the controls. If it's not working, we can still use force."
>>2623261Why can't he remember the name of his own house?
>>2624891I think Anon lost more than we thought the first time arriving here.
>>2624891Maybe we just didn't read the hints, which in turn made it canonical that he doesn't remember.However, remember the last time we were home?It was an apartment building. This is a house.I guess the theory that Anon is an orphan is true. His parents probably died in the event that drew him into hell. And then he spent one hundred years there, barely remembered being human and then entered an orphanage and later got his apartment.Which makes it very plausible that he barely even remembers. It was literally more than a century ago that he last saw the house.
>>2625089It's a flat in a completely abandoned building, too. He lives like a robot.
>>2627390It was one of the very first things that tipped me off that the story was going to be darker than I first figured.The sterile description of the apartment and it's location did not paint the picture of a healthy soul.
>>2623261>>2623348> [X] "You say that, but I don't think it'd have made a dent."> [X] "I'd say we put it to a better use."Daegal gives the gate a contemplative look, as he draws closer to the podium. "Maybe," he says, dubiously. "Maybe."> [X] "Can you get the gate open?"> [X] "Work your magic on the controls. If it's not working, we can still use force.""I can try..."He doesn't sound particularly hopeful, even as he takes his place before the controls - His hands hovering over the keyboard, like a pianist about to begin a concerto. With a deep breath, one he doesn't need, Kazuya begins to hit keys, the clack clack clack echoing hollowly within the chamber.The rotating equation trembles. Parts of it glow, incising alterations to the calculations. Complex algotithmic paradoxes shift and warp, resolved or blossoming into new lines of contemplation entirely-You don't know how Kazuya is doing this. You don't think *he* knows, either. It operates below the level of conscious perception, like a flash of intuition, as he manipulates controls he's never seen before to unlock a code that defies description. A tiny constellation of blue stars - little sapphire pinpricks, cnnected by a network of dim glowing filaments - blossoms within the golden circle, lines of light jagging forth as they array themseles along the surface of an invisible sphere. Like a star globe, a planetarium.The equation isn't in two dimensions. It's in three.The code undergoes mitosis, blossoming outwards into an actuality sphere - Parts of it glowing blue, subtly altering itself as it cycles through various permutations, so elaborate that tendrils of itself unfurl in waving fronds, like the petals of a flower. As Kazuya finds the interfaces, going through the motions, you hear him swear under his breath. "This isn't...What is this?" he mutters, sounding fascinated and almost resentful. "-How's *anyone* supposed to get this open, ever? They never heard of keys?"He glances back over his shoulder - "Joker, I'm not sure how long this might take-"Time is the one thing you don't have.(Continued)
>>2636390>>2623261> "Maybe I can do something."Something about this place...A key.Within the Helix Gauntlet, the Nihl Sphere is a dead orb of clouded quartz. A blinded eye.But you have something else, too. You reach for the Joker's Memory, the glyph - the mark - carved into the white marble shedding a crimson radiance of it's own. It seems like a single solid piece, the lines you glimpsed in that alleyway faded to nothing. If you could-The Joker's Memory suddenly gives, in your hands. A grinding, jerking movement that feels deeply and profoundly wrong. Planes of movement that shouldn't be possible. Stone intersecting wtih stone, passing through stone. And light flashes bright - A bloody crimson illumination, some indefinable *something* pouring forth. Something wrenches at the inside of your head."Wha-" Kazuya looks up from the keyboard, in alarm. "Joker, wha - Holy shit!"The equation glows red, too. It glows with a furious heat, as if fresh from the forge. Something catastrophic is happening, beneath that merciless, mutilating glow - the ground trembles underfoot, the slow grind of machinery in the walls taking on an urgent note, moaning and chattering with internal distress. There is a screeching, squealing din as the mechanisms begin to slow down, gears faltering, cogs decelerating-Daegal wrenches himself back. "What did you do?" he says - "What did you *do*?"[ ] "Get down."[ ] "It's working, isn't it?"[ ] "I'm not sure-"[ ] "This might have been a mistake."[ ] "We don't have the time. This is the only way."[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2636481Shit man, didn't expect an update this early.>"We don't have the time. This is the only way.">"Get down."
>>2636481Well this update caught me off guard.>[ ] "We don't have the time. This is the only way.">"If this works, then good. If not, at least we won't have any reason to stick around for longer than necessary."
>>2636481>[x] "It's working, isn't it?">[x] "Get down."
>>2636481"Just doing the same thing I always do: Put random keys into random holes.">[ ] "It's working, isn't it?"
>>2636481>[x] "We don't have the time. This is the only way."Whatever it's doing, it's leading us somewhere and that's never wrong
I think OP fell asleep waiting.
>>2637233>>2637327>>2637417>>2637891>>2638015> [X] "We don't have the time. This is the only way."Daegal looks away from the rotating equation - the symbols glowing red-hot, now, their internal radiance bright and furious - to the Joker's Memory, in your hands. "But that's - You don't know what it might've-"> [X] "It's working, isn't it?""Yes - I mean, no! That's not the poi..."> [X] "Get down."The equation - holographic gold turned forge-fired steel - explodes. It seems to leap into the air, right off the great gate, buckling as it does so. It shreds apart, as though it's been struck by some immense weight - Or as if a short-fused grenade has been detonated within.Shrapnel - the fragments of words - bounce off the walls, the ceiling, the grinding machinery. They rain to the ground around you, with a sound like smashing glass. Chips of not-quite-real substance - like melting ice - riochet from the devastation, clattering to the ground in twisted scraps.Your autoreactive talons dig into the ground, finding purchase, and you ignite the Sinistral as you turn into the face of the blast. A shard - particularly large, the size of a dinner plate - strikes the shield's solid light and deflects away, smoking gently against the floor as it begins to eat into it.The explosion knocks Daegal flat. He picks himself off his hands and knees, shaking his head to clear it. The lectern has overturned, the keyboard wrecked and mangled - sparks spit from the ruptured casing, the screen cracked and dead. (Continued)
>>2638364Flickers of electrical discharge - angry red sparks - dance along the cold adamant gate, leaping up in bursts of illumination, coiling around it like kudzu. An almost-silence descends, the hush that follows a detonation."I-""...I think you broke it," Daegal says, uncertainly. "Whatever you did, you broke it for good-"A beat.There is a thump. A series of rattling clanks. A chattering sound, a chirring, a cackling, tickling hum. Around you, the machinery starts up again. Gears begin to turn, cogs begin to spin.Pins unlock. Interleaved discs of metal separate, as great mechanisms disengage, as the gate splits down the middle. With ponderous glacier slowness, the gates swing outward.The chamber beyond is unlit, though your low-light optics are sufficient to make out its dimensions. The architects of this place made no allowances for human tolerances of comfort, requiring none of their own. And it is vast. The size of a football field, with walls of smooth, cold granite. The roof is, roughly, fifty meters above your head. The floor is paved with slabs of glossy, almost pearlescent stone, so tightly laid that not even a sheet of paper can be slipped between them. Static, or something like, bristles the atmosphere. Some invisible, harnessed force is at place here, keeping the wonders within inert and suspended. Vast assemblies of weapons - all suffused in the faint, barely-perceptible glow of the fields that sustain them - are here. Forests of swords and spears. Devices of strange and surreal make. The product of eons.Daegal goes silent. You feel that he might be on the verge of speaking, but the scale and ingenuity of what you're beholding - it defies description. None of them, you note, are secured. Any and all of the things here - They were meant to be used.(Continued)
man daegal is being so fucking whiny
>>2638438You cannot help but notice the gaps, the blank spaces, where more items should be. This place, it appears, was not spared whatever conflict raged within and without the city's walls. But was it looted, or did the defenders arm themselves in this vault? And if this what remains...-What did they take?Kazuya's footfalls echo hollowly, as he pads forward - slowly, cautiously, as if he expects something to leap out at him. Tentatively, he reaches up to lift a great spear free, from where it stands suspended by a gravity hook-It pulls loose, in his gauntlets. You can see, from the way he holds it, that the balance is extraordinary.And, quietly - "...There's - thousands of them," Daegal says. His voice, fractured by static, is almost a whisper. "Jesus. You could outfit an army...(THE FORGE: https://pastebin.com/C5ZkTYqY )[ ] "It wouldn't be the first time."[ ] "...I think they did, Kazuya. I think they had to."[ ] "Take what you need. We can't stay."[ ] "See if you can find another way out of here."[ ] "Something terrible happened here. No - This place is a terrible thing. An atrocity."[ ] "...I don't think it was good enough, in the end. Whatever happened to the city...I don't think you can fight it. Not with weapons."[ ] "Kazuya - I think these Relics were made from Players. Like, they were forged from them."[ ] "This place...It's like the Hollow Sun, or the Holophusikon."[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
We ought to get best boy equipped with something defensive. What should we get for ourselves?
>>2638458Dude, he's in a desperate situation and his buddy approaches everything by smashing his face through walls.He has every right to be terrified about the chances of fuckups, as well as the fact that it's apparently working.
>>2638463(Gentlemen, my apologies - I had to leave for most of the day. While I need to turn in for now, I didn't want to leave you hanging. I'll continue as soon as I get the opportunity.Note that the list is not exhaustive, merely what appears to be immediately useful. Sorting through the equipment would take weeks.)
>>2638463>[ ] "Kazuya - I think these Relics were made from Players. Like, they were forged from them.">"We take what feels right, then find a way out of here."
>>2638463>[ ] "It wouldn't be the first time.">[ ] "Take what you need. We can't stay.">[ ] "This place...It's like the Hollow Sun, or the Holophusikon.""Let's look for utility gear. Maybe there's a jetpack or bike in addition."...And now to actually look at the equipment list.
>>2638466You have given us a candy store of an arsenal. Sleep well you amazing OP, and take care.
>>2638463Is it just me, or does all of the stuff here appear to be cursed? A lot of it seems self-destructive to use, or ethically murky.
>>2638470I think we should keep quiet about them being made from Players. Knowing that won't be good for Kazuya's sanity.
>>2638470Agreed, actually.I think we should just take what we need and say what we can to assuage Daegal's fears.
>Orgel>Giving Kazuya Codebursts but potentially costing him SAN points>Meridian Blade>Giving Kazuya minor FOREBODE but a bad conscienceI assume these fucking things are still self-aware and mindbroken into fulfilling their function. Wish we had the nuke now, just to destroy the armory afterwards.>Parasite weaponsMight be nifty in a pinch. Maybe if we upgrade the Athame path.>Seeker>Minor Argus SystemWell, we'll certainly take one of those.>Familiars>Potentially less shitty interceptors>Can be charged via booster while we are travelling the wastelandHoly fuck.>Shield generatorWe can't give the inertia field away, so this looks like something for Kazuya... He will become a fucking fuckyou tank.>DeodandsThose could make for a nice trap... Or a good way to learn about the battle that was waged in this city.Should we maybe look at a few recordings once we are done arming ourselves? Or at least store some for later use.>TRIGONHoly what nigger. This is basically the endgame nuke, but would require us to have thrice as much HP and more control over encroachment first.>Notably, the VITAE BOOSTER is compatible with the TYRANT BURST SYSTEM (albeit with slightly less energy efficiency.) However, the VITAE BOOSTER has an optional auxiliary system meant to augment the Booster's primary functions. Not sure if a second meter bar is a good idea.>BlutsaugerOk, now it sounds much more worthwhile.>LUMENAlways nice to have.A bit like proto NIHL-spheres.>MIMETIC AEGISFuck yeah.>ENSEMBLELooks like a nice asshole option. Or a good way for essence farming. Fortify a position, then call on the correctors.>LOGOSAnother "fuck you" option.>EDINOROGGood against cowardly fucks.And now I remember that relic attunement upgrades are a thing.
>>2638528>Deodandsis that the in-universe version of Dark Souls Bloodstains?
>>2638528Could Daegal be equipped with Trigon? All of those upgrades on it seem to work with Daegal's capabilities. Also, I like the Maggot Revolvers as our new sidearms. Thoughts?
>>2638528I'm not sure, but does the Vitae Booster replace the cobalt booster or does it come as an additive?Because either way, I think we should cop that one and the Mimetic Aegis at minimum.
>>2638463>Meridian Blade Could be useful, but Omen works well enough for us so far. Kazuya might find them more useful with his talent for swords.>Maggot Revolver and Parasyte RifleWouldn't mind one of those.>OrgelMaybe to Kazuya. No way in hell are we giving up the Emulator Module.>Seeker Guns>Familiars>Aegis>EdinorogA definite YES.>Phase shieldGive to Kazuya. Make him even more obscenely durable.>DeodandsCould be useful for a quick getaway if we get caught in an ambush or to ambush someone else.>Trigon Obscene. I'm against using it now, but it'd be nice to keep it around in case we're really willing to go all or nothing or get upgrades that makes the price more tolerable.>Vitae and BlutsaugerI'd be up for it. Our Cobalt Booster is pretty damn fucked up and we don't know when we'll get a chance to fix it, so it's probably wise to switch it out.>LUMENWe can definitely find a use for these.>EnsembleMaybe we can fuck over everyone else in the city by using it and throwing it away before making our exit.>LogosGood for dealing with big targets or if we need to ruin a small army's day.
>>2638544It's most likely a replacement.And I seriously would not want to remove free energy in favor of another Meter mechanic. Blutsauger is nice, but only if we are alone. And I don't see why we'd ever split apart in the Black.Aegis is a no-brainer, though.>>2638537>Could Daegal be equipped with Trigon? All of those upgrades on it seem to work with Daegal's capabilitiesYou mean aside from the fact that it's a very traumatic procedure to go through and that the encroachment might fuck up the pure nature of his frame?Remember when the Hollow Sun wanted to kill us because of lachryma? I don't think giving the Sun's owner encroachment would be a good idea.>>2638569I would stock up on Meridian Blades of various shapes. Who knows, maybe we will be in a situation where we really need to do melee or maybe we'll need to arm someone else.We be able to combine Ensemble, Logos and Lumen.Fire Ensemble in the armor, move through a hidden passage to the borders of the city, then use Lumen and Logos to mow through correctors while we make our getaway.I agree with most of your points. Good thinking about our booster's damage status, but I'm still not sure whether replacing it is a good idea.In combat it will likely increase our power regeneration, but between fights we'll lose access to free power. Which includes sprinting away from environmental hazards and shit.Plus, the TYRANT BURST isn't exactly niche gear. We'd likely make more use of it and Blutsauger, as long as we aren't alone.
>>2638569What chapter describes our Cobalt Booster being damaged?
>>2638463>[ ] "And yet an army was still not enough to stave off the tragedy that happened here.">[ ] "Take what you need. We can't stay in this forge for long. They would've likely heard the gears. And the explosion.">[ ] "About time we get some new gear. half of my shit is either damaged or busted.>[ ] "Kaz. a fair warning. Some of these relics have severe drawbacks that'll make you regret picking up. Take what feels safe to use."For Kaz, We toss him:>Meridian blades>Phase Shield>a LUMEN relic (I'm assuming there are multiple copies of LUMEN in the Armory)>Dual Phase Shield (If Kazuya doesn't have a Field Generator equipped)>Aegis (We need to give Kaz a the equivalent of a spell shield Just tell him to try and not use codebursts.)Things that Joker is definitely taking:>Lumen>Maggot Revolver and Parasyte Rifle>Seeker Guns>Familiars>Aegis>Edinorog>>2638478They're more for surviving the BLACK. they're perfect for Joker if he is to wander around the black for a good century solo. But we're just visiting the black, not moving to live in the Black. And Kazuya's still a Red/Black World noob in level and life experience. >Deodands>dark souls bloodstains mechanicUseful for Traps . But I think Kazuya (our current navigator with a functioning map) will lose tons of SAN points from reliving multiple phantom deaths using the dang cube. So if we're taking it, Joker's the one that'll do the trap baiting. >LUMENOh hey! Lanterns! Joker and Kaz can hold one apiece!>Vitae BoosterI hope it's additive. Having it replace the Cobalt Booster will be such a bitch. Still a substitution for Cobalt booster. >Logos>a weaponized BRRAAAAAP Tuba Cannon that fucks up reality.Jesus. A good relic to use for Stalling pursuers. Not healthy for the local reality fabric though. But useful for forcing our pursers to stall and carefully navigate the fucked up place that Logos shot.
If we ever get back to the hollow sun and get to enter it without being shot at... What would happen if we threw TRIGON, KURA, SCYLLA, TEMPEST SCRANDER, and SKYSHAPER into the relic grinder?
>>2638463holy fuck, it's like christmas again. Wait...imagine....if we integrated the Forge's weapons with the Hollow Sun's industries and army, we'd be unstoppable. We have the Joker's Memory to access the Forge, Daegal's the Lord of the Hollow Sun, this could be our game winner right here>[x] "It wouldn't be the first time.">[x] "Kazuya - I think these Relics were made from Players. Like, they were forged from them.">[x] "This place...It's like the Hollow Sun, or the Holophusikon."Remember we're only seeing the remains of a war that occurred here, there's nothing to tell us which side won. As for which items to take...>Maggot Revolvers>Seeker Guns>Familiars>Lumen>Ensemble>EdinorogDual-Phase Shield sounds good, considering our Inertia Field isn't much, but I feel like we dont have much in the way of kinetic weaponry nowadays. I can't decide whether to take Vitae Booster or not, it has 200% charge but we get 170%+10% per round with Cobalt, and if you take Vitae then you must take Blutsauger, and that's a pretty hefty Encroachment cost... I'd say no for now. Can't see what Deodand is useful for, I'm not understanding much from the brief description. I'm also not sure on Aegis, take a look at how much the Codebursts cost in Cobalt, and that's with the Helix's 20% discount....I think? Either way, imagine taking just 10% of that cost as Encroachment, that's a lot just by itself. Ensemble could be good for drawing Corrector Hordes as a distraction against enemies, and if we ever get back to the Red, we could pretty much turn anywhere into a Hive, good for farming essence and such. Maybe we could just let them duke it out and capture the last one standing and have another Corrector petAnyways, the problem is Encroachment, everytime we get in a fight lately we end up racking Encroachment and there's no real way to eliminate it other than waiting for it to passively decay from our system. And seeing how it fucked Rook up after he obviously took on more than his HP%, I'd say we avoid anything that heavily builds it up unti we either attune ourselves better with Lachryma/Athame or regen Health faster. Unlocking the lachyrima abilities have been amazing so far but for now it's still very dangerous for constant use.As for Kazuya, he can definitely use the Meridian Blades, Lumen and Edinorog. Does Encroachment even apply to him? Wonder what'll happen if he uses those weapons...
>>2638463Tossing in a vote for the Vitae Booster + Blutsauger. Way more useful than the Cobalt Booster is at the moment.Also if we can take Trigon with us without equipping it that'd be nice too.
>>2640252Oh, and a Familiar on each leg. Not too much Meter leeching, not in the way of anything important.
>>2640269That is an unintentionally hilarious mental image.
>>2641059What you don't strap steel hawks to your legs?
>>2641806It's like the Leg Vulcans in Gundam. It's a weird-ass place for weapons.
>>2639234A weapon to surpass Metal Gear?
(Gentlemen, to clarify: The VITAE BOOSTER and the BLUTSAUGER are replacements for the COBALT BOOST and TYRANT BURST system respectively.Yes, you can wear FAMILIARS on your legs. There are multiple lanterns (i.e. LUMENs) available. Unfortunately, the TRIGON is too large to be transported.To clarify, the Seeker Guns are kinetic weapons, but they fire at extremely high velocities. They're physical projectiles. When activated (and they can be set to time-release) DEODANDS project their visions to either the holder, or to valid targets in the rough vicinity.This place generally seems to lack utility gear, but there's a vast profusion of weaponry. There doesn't appear to be any vehicles.)
>>2641969Yeah drop the Cobalt and Tyrant Burst for their edgier counterparts. Then there's two Familiars, both the Maggot Revolvers and the Rifle, Seeker Guns, Edinorog, a Lumen and Deodand for Joker.Meridian Blades, Dual Phase Shield, Aegis, and a Lumen and Deodand for Daegal.That is, if Daegal can even use equipment with an Encroachment penalty.No Trigon because the 50% HP cost can get fucked.
>>2641980Ah, and a couple Familiars for Daegal too.
>>2641969>Unfortunately, the TRIGON is too large to be transported.Is it possible to secure it to pick it up later?
>>2641984(Not in this case. It's about the size of an average Player, and doesn't compress itself the way the Hand of Midas did.)
>>2641986Guess we have to give up on it then. Between the cut to max HP and double Encroachment cost the thing is almost guaranteed to get us BAD ENDED in the very next encounter we have.
>>2638470>>2638471>>2638528>>2638544>>2638569>>2639274You lift an iron lantern from where it hangs, the pale, ghostly radiance flaring to life in your grasp. It casts strange, overlapping shadows, as you walk between the racks - the Relics glinting darkly upon their frames, where they do not hand, suspended. Dozens of them. Hundreds. Hundreds upon hundreds, stretching away into the distance as the light sweeps across them. How old are they, lost in deep time? Centuries? Millenia? Every weapon thousands of years old, but perfect as the day it was made. > [X] "It wouldn't be the first time."Daegal nods, soberly. "Yeah," he says. "Yeah.""If we'd had these when we were at the Diadem..." His voice trails off, and you know he's still plagued by the unanswerable question - Did the other make it out in time? Is Natsumi still alive? What's happened to the rest of the city?Sometimes, there *is* no answer. Sometimes, all you can do is to move on.> [X] "Take what you need. We can't stay."You don't know how long they'll take to find this place. Once the novelty of the experience has faded - Then they'll begin the search in earnest. They'll be exacting: After all, they'll have all of time to uncover the city's secrets.All the time in the world, and more.Daegal takes down a longsword, and sweeps it twice. The balance is - Like all the others - perfect. He takes down a curved sabre, half the length of the longsword, almost the same weight. He examines the gleam that runs like water along their edges - fresh and keen, no nicks - and spins them through his fingers. There is an exuberance in the motion. As if, in spite of everything else, he can't help but take a certain joy in merely holding two priceless blades. It reminds you of better days, of swinging sticks at each other, slaying ninjas in the ruins of the world. And then he turns the motion into a liquid flurry that transforms the blades into arcs of barely visible silvery flickers, and the lethal grace of that action brings you back to the here and now. Perhaps you're more sentimental than you think.There is a mechanical hum, a whir, as the weapon array on your back blossoms like the petals of a flower. The vault is filled with a dizzying profusion of weapons, an arsenal to deal death to - and made from - all kinds of foe. This one chamber - echoing in its vastness - could take a lifetime to explore and fully catalogue. You don't have time for that. You choose by the simplest means - Weighing each one in your hands, for a heartbeat, and gauging the killing potential it holds.(Continued)
>>2642013> [X] "And yet an army was still not enough to stave off the tragedy that happened here."Daegal stops, mid-swing. He looks back at you. "...I was wondering about that," he says, serious now. "The city...It's been emptied out. I don't think Sepi-" Kazuya's voice hitches, but he goes on. "...I don't think Sepia was originally here. I mean, the original inhabitants - There was a siege, I know that. But what happened to all of them?"His autoloader cycles, within him - Blue lights flickering in his optics. "Why didn't they come back? And if the other side won - Where did they go?"The subarms of your weapon array reach out, grasping a brace of Maggot Revolvers, loading them in place with distinct clicks. The lantern's light flickers, as you take your hands away - tiny chirring clacks and hums lingering as avian drones fasten their magnetized talons on greaves, like elaborate ornaments. They stir, briefly, their eyeslits glowing with the blue light of the Cobalt Booster, before they sink into a kind of slumber, waiting for the call to arms.> [X] "This place...It's like the Hollow Sun, or the Holophusikon."You remember. The Black Tri-Stars, the wall of weapons within the Holophusikon...But this place is as different from the clean, clear - somehow regal - lines of that twice-lost fortress, as it differs from the baroque industrial efficiency of the Hollow Sun. Kazuya's never seen either place, but he nods in agreement. "Kouichi would've loved-" he begins, then catches himself a moment too late. He looks away, abruptly engrossed in prising paired Seeker Guns from their cases. The weapons cycle up to power, as he hefts them experimentally - lines of silver light trailing along the seams. The silence lingers, as you reach up for the Cobalt Booster's cracked orb. Something's jammed in the mechanism - There's a brittle crunch as you turn the manual release, phantom echoes of weakness playing through your limbs as the secondary reactor slides free. The swirling lines of the Vector Trap's hypersphere engulf it, folding it away from the here and now - The hole it leaves in your torso, as you detach the scatter-gun, is about the size of doubled fists.The Vitae Booster is quite another thing entirely. Flaring ribs of adamant rivet themselves in place, as it slides home - Twisting, once, as it clicks into place, your chest armor folding up around it. For a moment, bewildering sense-echoes play through your mind - the salt tang of the scalpel, the iron hit of blood - as red floods through the conduits and the power-lines...Better.(Continued)
>>2642033Not far away, Daegal stiffens, momentarily, as an Aegis-inset amulet clamps itself in place. There is something insectile about the way it clings to him, like a spider's skittering legs - Echoing the momentary discomfort you feel, as you lock your own in place.Here - the vast bulk of the LOGOS, swallowed up by the Vector Trap. The single stake of the EDINOROG, your gauntlet finding the ivory grip. Twin Seeker Guns, joining the rest of your arsenal. Daegal's form flickers - once, then again - as he triggers his shield generator's phase-shift. Kinetic to energy, back again, ghostly streamers of light bleeding from the nexus on his back, dragging across his armor. He reaches out - Like a mime in an invisible box - to try (and fail) to touch the inside of the translucent field that sheaths him.The lightless, lethal bulk of GOLGOTHA at your back seems to make all other blades redundant. But you draw a chopping machete and a needle-sharp estoc from their resting places, all the same - a false warmth pulsing within their hilts, as they come to life in your hands. There's something inherently brutal about them, as you feint a swing, then riposte with a killing thrust - Your gauntlets moving blink-fast, with an eerie speed that echoes thought. Not for the first time, you wonder what wars - other than the very last one - they were meant for. "-Not a good match?" Kazuya says, as he wanders over. Ornate ravens, wings furled, ride on his shoulders. They give him a regal air, as if he's been crowned...Then he ducks his head, and the moment passes."Here," he says, as he lifts a mace in his hand - metal fingers clacking on the silver-threaded haft. The head, unusually, appears to be fashioned not from steel, but from black stone - Crystal flecks shimmering beneath the stone's surface, like a miniature cosmos. "...I found this."[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2642059>"Put it to good use."We've gotten everything we want or can afford to take from this place. Better be on our way now. Wonder if we can rig this place to self-destruct before we leave.
>>2642059Hold it for a moment and see what it does. Pass it back if it would be more suitable for Kaz.By the way OP, how come the Meridian Blades and the relics Kazuya picked out don't undergo any changes when in contact with his armor like the Condemner do?
>>2642059>[x] "No thanks, I've got enough"Let Kazuya have a nice toy for once, can't hog all the loot ourselves, but check it out and see what it does. Besides, he's better at melee than we are
>>2642084(He can't enhance living things, and he has to be wielding them. Simply carrying them isn't enough.)
>>2642092Interesting. Thanks OP.
>>2642097(No problem. I'll continue tomorrow, as I must turn in for now.)
>>2642033>The hole it leaves in your torso, as you detach the scatter-gun, is about the size of doubled fists.Oh, so that machine back then didn't install the Booster, but rather the booster slot.That's interesting.
>>2642072Seconding.>>2642059Get a Meridian Spear.That was Natsumi's specialty, right?Fire EXEC_HARROW onto TRIGON. Just in case one of those fucks activates the thing and tries to follow us.So now we got a fuckyou axe as well as increased efficiency of physical boosts.I think the Black might be telling us something.Can the NIHL sphere eat the essence cores of Meridian Blades?Also, don't forget to take the ENSEMBLE and a few Deodands with us.
>>2642092Speaking of enhancing things, we should try running a few of these things through CHAGAN. I'm sure at least a few of these things can be altered.
>>2642059Can we use the Joker's Memory to see if there's anything Joker related here?Also, hold the hammer and see what happens.
>>2643437I am this poster but what >>2642229Said
>>2642059Can we give the kinetic shield module to Daegal and take the dual phase module for ourselves? Orichalum is highly resistant to energy and as a close combat guy, i think the kinetic field would suit him more.Also can we take Orgel as well?
>>2643437>>2642217>>2642072What these anons said
>>2644249Kinetic shield is one of the two modes of the DUAL phase shield.But yeah, almost forgot the Orgel.Wouldn't want to get rid of our emulator module, but maybe Kazuya is interested.If nothing else, we should keep it with us at least. Could come in handy later.Maybe a crafting-type player can build something interesting with an auxilliary brain.
>>2644252I meant lets give daegal the intertia field and we take the dual phase shield. We're lighter and not energy resistant, especially after losing cobalt booster, while the intertia field will suit the melee fag
>>2644249(It's a dual-phase shield. Like the Armory Guardians, he can alternate between kinetic or energy shielding mode.)>>2642229(You'll need a few upgrades before CHAGAN can manage that. The Relic is currently at Level 1.)
>>2644270Can we use the Jokers Memory to look for past red joker material? Is there some way to tell if the vitae booster is Red Joker related?Also, can we give Daegal the kinetic interia generator and swap it with the shield generator? Can we take orgel too? Can familiars be switched on/off but still worn?Does upgrading athame lessen the damage encroachment can cause/increase our tolerance for it?Also guys, i still think power 2.5 is the best upgrade we can get next, followed by golgotha or athame
>>2644278(I'll address the first one in my next post. No, you can't remove the Inertia Field Generator. You can swap, but one disables the other. You can take the Orgel with you, and Familiars can be turned 'off'. It's unlikely that you'd want to, however.Among other things.)
>>2644282In that case can we take some extra familiars for our arms and just store them in the vector trap for now? Also, please take Orgel with us. Thanks OP
>>2644270Just to clarify: The Meridian blades(any variation), Maggot revolvers, Parasite rifles, and the Seeker guns aren't explicitly stated to be relics yet every other item in the forge IS- Does this mean the items I mentioned simply too high a level for CHAGAN to process despite not being relics, or did you simply mean for us to assume ALL items from the forge are relics to begin with?Furthermore:Can we have DAEGAL reach into the arsenal beacon and slap a void anchor down here? I get that our primary goal is to follow the joker memory, but this place is too valuable for us to simply leave be. We don't really have any reliable ways to destroy this place and ensure nothing can be salvaged and used against us... I mean short of building enough meter for the singularity cannon, but even then it wastes way more time than we have currently.Maybe the best course of action isn't running away? What if we can make the area safe? Could we not use the ENSEMBLE to kite correctors into our stalkers, forcing a confrontation that we can mount an ambush against? We've got too many enemies piling up in our backlog, I think we stand to lose more by retreating now. I don't want to get pincered by VOIVOID and god knows what else trying to scramble out of the city. But if we're smart about this we can thin the ranks. Maybe get enough levels in GUARD and ATHAME attunment that TRIGON won't murder us just for putting it on?
>>2644285I wholeheartedly say no to using Trigon.
>>2644285(They're all Relics. At present, the CHAGAN is limited to different 'modes' for the first tier of your Meter weapons. It'd take a while for it to apply to other items.)>>2644285(He's not carrying one. He received the Arsenal Beacon after the shield went up, and he's been using the Hollow Sun's mass-production weaponry, generated by enhancing the Beacon to produce temporary copies.)
>>2642072>>2642084>>2642088Your hand closes around the haft. > RELIC ACQUIRED: ULTIMATUM> Chased in silver, with a head fashioned from pitch-black stone - mined from the core of the Black - ULTIMATUM reflects some element of those lightless depths. When the maul's disruption field is activated, the sparks of black lightning that crackle across the surface belies ULTIMATUM's potency - Upon a direct impact, a blow from the mace has a chance to temporarily blind a target, shorting out sensors and overloading optics. > ULTIMATUM is a Meridian Weapon, and subject to the same properties.> "Put it to good use."Kazuya nods, gripping the mace in both hands - And then he locks it to his armor, with a snap of magnetic force. (VITAE BOOSTER: 160%)The Vitae Booster glows, with emberous light. Violet flame ignites, at the fingertips of your gauntlet - drawing together, sketching a symbol in fire. You fling it away, contrails of scorching flame momentarily blackening your armor - When your spiralling mark connects with TRIGON's gibbet-breastplate, there is a searing hiss, like a brand being quenched.The furious glow lingers, scattering motes of itself around the silent Relic, casting a long, glowering shadow in sharp relief. And then it fades, to the dullest glow - only barely visible. There. Now, you'll know.If any of them give themselves over to TRIGON - At least now, you'll see them coming. (Continued)
>>2644306> Get a Meridian Spear.> Get the OrgelThe rest of your salvage is an afterthought, as you make your way between the rows. Here, you pull free a spear of dully gleaming alloy - There, you lift the ivory shape of ORGEL free from the suspension field that seals it away. Tiny contrails of red light swirl around them, as the Vector Trap folds them away into virtual space. You know, deep down, that you'll never find this place again. What you collect now will have to last a lifetime. Paired Familiars stir from the perchs, as you pass your hands across them - They, too, dissolve, drawn away into storage. Your iron lantern hangs at your belt, as you reach for the Joker's Memory. It's led you this far - You can still feel the pull, subtly altered now.What were you supposed to find...?The forest of weapons appears to go on forever. Long corridors of blades, thickets of spears, walls of darkly gleaming revolvers. But there's something out of place, something missing. Your footfalls make soft metallic sounds against the ground, as you're drawn towards-There. A broad area, a dozen meters wide, beneath the vaulted ceiling. Here, the first signs of damage show - the ground is scorched with burns, scraped with shrapnel and the pockmarks of gunfire. An almost-perfect disc, the damage ending beyond its bounds."...Is this it?" Kazuya says, hushed. "Is there where we go?"You're positive.There is a thrum, under your feet - the red light of the Joker's Memory welling up from the joins of the cube. It is answered by the radiance that ignites at the circumference of the circle, as everything around you surges upward-No. You're descending.Smoothly, without a sound, the platform lowers. Down. Further. Deeper. The black walls - without seam or join - blur into a fluid darkness, with only the shifting light from far, far above letting you know how far you've gone. Overhead, the light shrinks to the size of a long-forgotten moon. Then a coin's-width.A pinprick.Gone. And then the only light are the Lumens you both carry - Joined, a moment later, by the rippling glow of the Condemner's flames, as Daegal draws his sword. It's more for comfort than anything else, you can tell; the ghostly radiance of the iron lanterns are spectral, unnerving. "Where-" Kazuya winces, as his voice echoes. He tries again."...Where are we going-?"[ ] "I don't know. But be ready."[ ] "Wherever these weapons were made, I suppose."[ ] "As long as it takes us away from Voivoid, I'll consider it an improvement."[ ] "Somewhere bad. I can feel it."[ ] "What does the map say?"[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2644320>[ ] "I don't know. But be ready.">[ ] "What does the map say?"
>>2644320>[X] "I don't know. But be ready.">[X] "What does the map say?"
>>2644320To confirm, did we take ENSEMBLE and a bunch of DEODANDs?Thank you
>>2644330(Yes, you took ENSEMBLE and one Deodand each.)
>>2644320>[ ] "I don't know. But be ready.">[ ] "What does the map say?""Maybe it's where the good gear is. Maybe that good gear is self-aware and hostile. Let's wait and see."
>>2644325>>2644326>>2644336> [X] "I don't know. But be ready."Daegal nods. Both of you are loaded for bear, now - But his hand goes, instinctively, to the Immolator. He doesn't draw it - He just wants to reassure himself that it's there. You can tell that he's shaking, slightly. The long, endless day is taking a toll on him.> [X] "What does the map say?""Wha - the map. Right-"He lowers the Condemner, fumbling around for the map - Then he catches himself, and the Vector Trap's hypersphere boils around his raised hand, the map slotting neatly into his grasp. Kazuya unfurls the sheet of hammered steel, looking down at it-A moment passes. Another."I-"Daegal looks up, tilts the map so you can see. It's blank."Joker-" And now he's beginning to sound really scared. "-We're off it."> "Maybe it's where the good gear is. Maybe that good gear is self-aware and hostile. Let's wait and see."He doesn't answer, too occupied by staring into the rushing dark on all sides - It's as if he's expecting something to leap out at him, something to-(Continued)
>>2644338The light changes. The Lumen's radiance no longer plays off solid walls on all sides, filtering outwards into a wider gloom. The shift is so subtle, it takes you a moment to notice."...Is this it?"It's a passage, wide enough - At first glance - for a platoon to march abreast. Your swaying illumination plays out mounded lumps, shapes rounded and angular. The same scarring - the damage you've noticed before - is even worse here, so ferocious that it blurs and deforms the smooth face of the wall. Black granite pillars rise to a shadowed height, the light strong enough to give only an impression of a domed ceiling. Above - the suggestion of iron poles, jutting from the upper reaches...You take a step forward-Your foot hits something hard, but yielding - Something that rolls away from your boot. A split-second later, the same sound comes from your side, as Kazuya's leading foot kicks away an oddly-shaped piece of debris, which slides into something else.On the cusp of a premonition, you look down.It is a hand.The passage is filled, knee-deep and wall-to-wall, with the blasted corpses of Players. (Continued)
>>2644365>The passage is filled, knee-deep and wall-to-wall, with the blasted corpses of Players.Sounds like a former Joker was making a last stand.
>>2638463>The LOGOSPlease tell me it's a Sousaphone.
>>2644365Some are still covered in glinting fragments of armor. Many more are rusty steel skeletons, held together with shrivelled, rotting scraps of myomer musculature. Others are just loose collections of pieces, half-scattered across the floor."Oh shit!" Kazuya's voice rings out, as he staggers. "Oh shit-"It's different from the graveyard of machines, from Sepia Prison's refuge. The sheer level of ruin wrecked in this place tells of extraordinary levels of violence, point-blank and relentless. As you pick your way forward through the charnel mess, a pattern begins to emerge-A force, descending into head-on gunfire. An incredible, inhuman level of resistance. Pushing forward, inexorable - Advancing over the bodies of the fallen, hoisting them up as shields to give weight to the unstoppable rush...Limbs off. Heads removed. Bodies slumped. The carnage is spread thick across the rippled and furrowed ground. Whatever remains is mummified in sundered armor, left to dessicate in the near-lightless gloom. You reach down, seeking what you already know must be there-On a shoulder guard - Carved and burned and sculpted. The same symbol from above - the abjuration against evil.The Red Joker was here.(Continued)
>>2644383Slightly ahead - the ground, raised, rippled. Fused. Strangely clear of obstructions. The walls, curling inwards in odd shapes, in almost-organic fronds and runnels. Ash sifts into the air, as charred armor breaks underfoot with a brittle crunch.There are shapes fused into the walls. Perhaps instinct had sent them fleeing and scurrying in those last moments, pressing themselves into corners, ducking under makeshift cover-As if it could save them from the all-erasing fury of a Fusion Annihilator at full charge.After all, he'd already left the axe behind.Were they shielding him, until he could fire? Was that why they'd charged?The rippling wake of destruction is visible, even now. A long furrow where the alchemy of devastation has transmutated the ground into something strange amaglam, alloyed with the melted remains of Players.Daegal stares ahead, as he picks his way between the fallen. It's that, or look down."Is this - Is this what it was like?" he says. Then, wonderingly-"...How do you - How did you live with it? After seeing something like...this?"[ ] "Sometimes, all you can do is to keep going. I just...carried on."[ ] "You helped me. You, Natsumi, Akira."[ ] "I don't know. Not really."[ ] "Naoya said...He said, nothing human could have. He was wrong."[ ] "I tried to forget. For six years, I tried."[ ] "One day at a time, Kazuya. One day at a time."[ ] "The only way I could. Head down, and inching towards the light."[ ] FreeYOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2644399>[X] "Sometimes, all you can do is to keep going. I just...carried on.">[X] "You helped me. You, Natsumi, Akira."
>>2644399>[ ] "I don't know. Not really.">[ ] "Sometimes, all you can do is to keep going. I just...carried on."
>>2644399>[ ] "You helped me. You, Natsumi, Akira.">[ ] "One day at a time, Kazuya. One day at a time.""It helps having something to fight for."So this is the owner of Golgotha, who also unlocked the icon ability. Are both his or did he use Oblivion's Husk for the icons?
>>2644401>>2644404>>2644410(Gentlemen, I hate to stop here, but I have to rest for now. I'll continue - most likely tomorrow - once I have the opportunity.)
>>2644399>[ ] "I tried to forget. For six years, I tried.">[ ] "This armor frame that I wear changed hands many times. Kaz. Each passing of the Red Joker's torch to its next successor, a tragedy.">[ ] "Seeing scenes like this, always leaves a bittersweet taste in my mouth.">[ ] "My successors failed to stop their personal world from ending. And yet, they succeeded in passing the torch to someone whom they believed in. >[ ] "Naoya said "Nothing human could have lived with seeing the horrors of the black. He was wrong.>[ ] "The Red Joker was "The Red Joker" sure, but Each Red Joker was 'never alone' in the fight. They always have someone to believe in. And they, him.">[ ] "The Red Joker who fought here, the one who forged the axe on my back, did all he could to help them survive to see the light of another day. They repaid the favor. >[ ] "These players, they believed in him. They sacrificed themselves knowing that he would carry on in their stead what he's been trying to do for them. To survive and carry on their memory. >[ ] "You helped me. You, Natsumi, Akira.">[ ] "'One day at a time, Kazuya. One day at a time.' it's a timeless adage that works well in anyplace. but in my humble opinion that 'one day' is really stretching it.">[ ] "This place would've been a goldmine of "black comedy" jokes if it weren't such a dreary black hole of despair and madness."I wanna crack a relevant joke to make Kazuya laugh and remember that he's still human in the core. All I could think of are "black comedy" puns/jokes. We may be the Red Joker, but we still have a sense of humor. It's proof of our humanity.
>>2644574jesus christ dude
>>2644574This whole post is autistic, but even that aside cracking a joke in this sort of place and situation actually makes Joker sound more like a sociopath.
>>2644575too autistic? can't help it. JQOP gave us a [ ] Free option. I'm putting it to good use. Besides, JQOP can pick and choose which greentext option he'll include in the next update.
>>2644574Dude, what the fuck.>>2644584If we went with that write-in, we could follow it up by killing Kazuya and taking TRIGON.Maximize the edge and melodrama.
>>2644399>"This is the Black, Daegal. Nothing is normal here, nothing's the same. It's always this bad but never exactly like this, gradations of awfulness. The Red was different because I could leave and despite the horror, it could be beautiful. I had you, Natsumi and Akira with me and I even made allies. But the Black is new horror after new horror. A trash can, a toilet of utter rot the size of a world. Naoya said to me once that nothing human could survive down here and he's not entirely wrong.If you take in all of this filth, you can't help but get sick of it. Get sick *with* it. That's why I just survive. I put one foot in front of the other, I carried on. I survived until I could live. If I could do it alone, you and I will do it together, Brother."
>>2644399>[ ] "One day at a time, Kazuya. One day at a time.">[ ] You helped me a lot, man. You still do... >[ ] "...sweet-ass loot sure helps the grind, too, so there's that." >[ ] Attempt to crack a joke in this sand-blasted hell hole to alleviate tension.
>>2644860>[ ] Attempt to crack a joke in this sand-blasted hell hole to alleviate tension.Can you at least pretend to be a human being with a shred propriety? Out of all the points in the quest worth joking in, this is among the worst.
>>2644881My post was more of a joke in line with the posts prior, it wasent meant to be taken seriously unless the OP decided to write it in. Also, I'd like to point out that Joker is almost assuredly and completely insane, so I feel like cracking a joke at a poor time wouldn't be completely out of line, especially in the Red. I'm probably wrong, though.
>>2645089Oh yeah, let's reassure Kazuya that he wasn't just seeing things and that we actually are not quiet human while we are walking together through hell for an eternity.No way that can go wrong.
>>2644399>[ ] Free>"Spite, plain and simple. The world presses down and tries to break me. I tell it to go fuck itself and keep going."
>>2613202You know, as I was taking a walk today a few ideas occurred to me. No.1 - Look at how Golgotha differs in appearance to how its described in Oblivion's Husk,>The impaling axe is a massive thing, a two-hander with a long, balanced handle. It is a flat, lightless black - haft and grip engraved with complex, weaving patterns, recalling circuitry. It is single-bladed, with a great spike at the other end - a single glyph worked into the curving crescent blade- That sensation of familiarity, the world blurring and buzzing, buzzing at the edges-compared to >A great executioner's axe of red iron, nicked and pitted by a thousand butcherings, GOLGOTHA is an exceptionally vicious weaponSo clearly, Golgotha is missing some ability we'll have to unlock to get.2, The Vitae Booster has adamantine fingers and glows with a deep red and also serves as a precursor to the Cobalt Booster, making it old. Not only that - >aking the form of a red-glowing sphere, with adamant fittings - reminiscent of grasping skeletal fingers - to conduct the power.which is quite similar to the Carnifex given it also has steel admant fingers built into it and also focuses on physical enhancement. Also, when we put it in, that taste of blood is generally associated with Joker gear. I think the Vitae Booster may have always been Red Joker gear.Finally, I'm wondering, can we use Draw Forthe to repair gear? Like, can we fix some of our relics or weapons using Lachryma to reinforce them? Multiple enemies use lachryma at multiple points and here in the Black, it's the only resource that's always on tap so could be a good idea? We wouldn't have to RESUPPLY then either.Also, I'd just like to note this too>There are usually two Jokers per deck, often noticeably different. For instance, the United States Playing Card Company (USPCC) prints their company's guarantee claim on only one. More common traits are the appearance of colored and black/non-colored Jokers. At times, the Jokers will each be colored to match the colors used for suits; there will be a red Joker, and a black Joker. In games where the jokers may need to be compared, the red, full-color, or larger-graphic Joker usually outranks the black, monochrome, or smaller-graphic one. If the joker colors are similar, the joker without a guarantee will outrank the guaranteed one. With the red and black jokers, the red one can alternately be counted as a heart/diamond and the black is used to substitute clubs/spades. The Unicode for playing cards provide symbols for three jokers: red, black, and white.So, it seems likely that there really are two Jokers, the Red Joker and the White Joker, with the Black Joker having been manufactured by the Black Cardinal (White Joker + Nihil Sphere + The staff thing) when he tried to make the dead Kotone into a Player to revive her but instead brought a whole chunk of the Black with him too.
>>2648176We honestly barely used draw forth at all, since it just didn't seem a viable option due to Lachryma being a bitch. I'd really like to see Joker being less susceptible to it.Say, if we happen to escape, and get back in the real, how would all of you feel about contacting Red World Mengele and see if he can raise our resistance/ make Lachryma depend options less expensive?
>>2648182I think Athame does that actually. If you read it's description>ATHAME: Your growing attunement with the Athame allows you a level of control over Lachryma, at the risk of physical and mental corruption. >DRAW FORTH: When this ability is activated, you tap a source of Lachryma in the vicnity - and subsequently absorb it, in order to rapidly regenerate from damage. This action requires you to remain in physical contact with the Lachryma you're drawing upon, with the rejuvenating effect taking place while the 'charge' remains in your system. While this allows for HP recovery, your armor's compromised immunity means that you suffer from encroachment proportionate to the quantity absorbed in this fashion; the higher your encroachment value, the higher the penalties suffered. If your ENCROACHMENT percentage ever exceeds your current HP, your Essence Core is likely to suffer terminal corruption. Your ENCROACHMENT percentage gradually decreases over time. This ability can be used with any source of Lachryma.It's Athame which describes how ENCROACHMENT effects us and it's Athame which also describes how we use it. I think if we boost Athame, we'd actually gain both a new power and control our tolerance for ENCROACHMENT because if you've noticed, other plays seem to be able to use Athame a loooot fucking better than we do and way more regularly. This is likely because they aren't actually made/designed to absorb/use Athame like the Red Joker obviously is, considering how often other Jokers seem to use it and how Oblivion's Husk, again and again, has descriptions, abilities and more that hint that the Red Joker is deeply connected to the Black.That's why for our next level up I say we go Athame or POWER/DAMAGE next and then get Golgotha after that. With the amount of equipment we have now that uses Athame, it would massively increase our ability to fight/heal/use our booster. It'd probably overhaul our combat style as much as a POWER boost would.This is also why I think we shouldn't get CHAGAN for the time being. It's a great power and incredibly useful but it's tied to one limb and even then, both Athame would allow us to repair CHAGAN quicker if it gets lost but also by improving/unlocking more base weapons, we have more weapons we can put through CHAGAN too.Athame/Power, Golgotha, the one we didn't get, chagan would be how I'd level up Joker. With the way we're built now, damage is fucking king and literally feeds into our Booster, our Meter, our Health. It's p.great. Getting RESUPPLY is the sucker's option.>>2644399If half the essence in the Black is spent on healing us after every time we kill a Player, does that mean we only get half exp per a kill? Also about the Merdian Blades, does it drain 25% essence if it makes the killing blow or if it was used at all/equipped? Can we use Blutsaugen to heal in anyway?
>>2644404>>2644401>>2644410>>2647756> [X] "I don't know. Not really."> [X] "Sometimes, all you can do is to keep going. I just...carried on."Yes. You grasped the simple, essential truth faster than most: That no-one was coming to help you. That the world as you had known it was gone, and that the only one who could save you was yourself.You remembering running. Fleeing. Moving on, constantly, teaching yourself the discipline for it. Not to get comfortable, not to succumb to what seemed inevitable. But that was all.There is no secret to you, no grand mystery. Just-> [X] "One day at a time, Kazuya. One day at a time."Days become weeks become months become years. Until all that remains is an eternal now, where you are present. To continue, to see the next day - and the next - and the one after that.That was what kept you going. > [X] "Spite, plain and simple. The world presses down and tries to break me. I tell it to go fuck itself and keep going."At times, this purgatorial existence seemed designed to inflict punishment. You couldn't starve, but you could feel the pangs of hunger and thirst - until, at last, you learned to ignore them. Not sleeping was the worst. You didn't need to sleep, but you still needed to dream. A nightmare of eternal wakefulness. That was what broke so many, in the end - the loss of illusions. The inability to imagine anything other than totality, the plains of silence swelling to engulf all else.And yet-And yet, you endured. Even at the end, when they took your legs. Even when you were scrabbling at the black sands, dragging yourself forward one fistful at a time. You remember how the sand itself was hot enough that it burned off the dust-shroud you'd wrapped around yourself to conceal weeping mechanisms, hot enough that your makeshift robes began to smolder.Even when you heard them closing in.And then the sound, the azoic flash, the blast that split the air like distant thunder. The splayed column of searing light, roaring forth - Blasting them apart like ash in a gale. Hearing their screams as they bathed in raw flame, as they writhed and thrashed and became less than nothing.The low hum of servoes, the Red Joker's long shadow - Weary, but somehow indomitable - falling across yours...In the end, you found a way to save yourself, after all. (Continued)
>>2648404> [X] "You helped me. You, Natsumi, Akira."> [X] "It helps having something to fight for."And, after everything-They were the ones who taught you how to be human again. In a sense - In a way - you were fortunate. They were your anchor, in the long, long mourning that followed. Not quite a life, but a living. But something remained, despite it all. Something circling, without ever seizing hold.And now, in a darkness so profound that you may as well be blind-The past has found you again."I...didn't know," Kazuya says. Quiet, now. "I thought - I knew something had happened. Nat-chan knew it, too. But...Nothing like this."He looks up. "-I could never have imagined this. Never."His optics flicker. "And now Akira's gone, and Natsum-" Daegal stops. "...We can't - We can't leave her alone again. Not knowing."Silence blossoms. It lingers, as you make your way forward. There is a strange sensation of familiarity, of walking in the footsteps of another. The crush of bodies becomes tighter, until it's nearly impossible to avoid stepping on the brittle remains of the dead. You see - In the LUMEN's ghostly light - the vast, gouging wounds left by the Plasma Caster, fired at nearly point-blank range. So close the blasts went through multiple Players at once.There, further to the right - scattered limbs, a tight severing focus. Torsos are rent in half, the edges rippled where metal melted and re-set. The Joker's Memory throbs in your grasp-Not much further, now.And you see-(Continued)
>>2648454The light in the antechamber seems opaque, as if stained brown by smoke. It is a vast space, like an arena - the ground tiled in cream stone. There is a great flight of steps, like the processional advance to a temple, the walls draped in banners. You advance through the cool darkness under a grand arch, into the courtyard beyond - A wan radiance sheets through slots in the roof, though you know you're too far underground for any natural light to penetrate.Around the edges - alcoves, podiums, plinths, displays...A battle of titanic proportions has taken place here. Where the dead numbered in dozens before, they number in hundreds here. The jumbled corpses cover the endless floor into infinity. Looming above them, like islands in the sea of bodies-"Those-" Daegal says, faintly. "...Those aren't Players..."No. You've seen them before, at the beginning of all this.Armory Guardians. Four of them, blasted and ruined. Weapon-mounts smashed, pockmarked by gunfire, cored by energy blasts. The cone of radiance dances across their hulking, ruined forms - Like primordial leviathans beached on some distant shore. Astral tracers swirl faintly, rising like fireflies from one toppled form - Bent forward, sensor-cluster angling towards the ground, great limbs slack as if praying.(Continued)
>>2648491Kazuya's ahead of you, now. In his hands, his iron lantern gleams with spreading filgree - the light going from pale white to amber, a honeyed glow. He sweeps it from left to right, as the beam widens, swirling distortions dancing in the ray as he points it over - almost through - one of the fallen, past the bowed sensor-cluster head."I see something," he says - Turning back. "Doors...They look like they're a meter thick. But they're open-"And-And you feel-(FOREBODE activated)The world slows. Your senses accelerate, a cold surge racing up the base of your endosteel spine, deep down. You feel the power in your limbs, in the suddenly-warming, suddenly active flex of the myomer muscle in your armor's inner skin. You feel the throb of the reactor against the small of your back, as it yields full power.HP: 101.47%VITAE BOOSTER: 150%ASSAULT SHROUD: 150%METER: 31%ENCROACHMENT: 13%YOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2648530Oh shit.Set off the familiars.Try to see if the enemy lights up on the Seeker gun's display.Shit, I have no more ideas than these.
>>2648516"Dodge and get ready, Daegal!"Put the Vitae's augmentation to work and add in the jets to get out of danger. Prime the Familiars, have Omen ready to strike and try to draw a bead on the enemy with the Seeker Gun.
>>2648540(To clarify, you're charging both Familiar from your Vitae Booster?)
>>2648543I thought the scene where we first equipped them was meant to imply that we used the Cobalt Booster to charge them before we replaced it with the Vitae Booster, due to them coming to life for a moment.If not, then let's use a different approach.>>2648541Omen is a good idea. We have no idea what kind of enemy we are facing, so we shouldn't rush in yet. We need to get a measure of our opponent first.We don't even know if this hostile is unable to reason. Might be an actual person who is ambushing us for safety.So let's stay safe and look at what we are facing first.Use the shroud's afterimages while we are moving.
>>2648553Third, but lets not use shroud yet.
>>2648540>>2648541>>2648543>>2648553Ember-heat seethes through your limbs. It pulses from the core of your being, through jointed endosteel and electrodrivers, spiking raw force through you-> "Dodge and get ready, Daegal!"Daegal doesn't hesitate. He simply drops flat, like a puppet with strings cut. He hits the ground, LUMEN bouncing from his grip, as he claws for the Condemner -There is a flash, as if the air has become solid. As if light has become hard. Killing fire, igniting in cracked optics. Your Assault Shroud boils with afterimages, swirling around you in a haze of distortion - bleeding phantom Jokers that evade and sprint and flit in every direction at once.A blur, in the gloom. Surging into the light. Dancing blue sparks of electric charge. A huge claw swings across, talons extruding outwards on calipers. It misses Daegal by a hand's-breadth, discharging with a loud bang like a crack of thunder. The blow smashes the nearest wall to flinders, hurling forth fist-sized chunks of debris with bulleting force.OMEN is in your hand - red light jagging through the fibers of your limbs, as a flash of premonition surges through you. You leap, pushing off from the ground so hard it cracks, as the gloom lights up with twin plumes of plasma flame. The scattershot blast of dual Plasma Casters hurl forth tongues of scorching muzzleflash, the cohered blasts erupting in twin fireballs- A false dawn blossoms. The uneven craters left by the blasts glow red-hot, as stone burns. Smoke wisps upwards, like a haze of incense, as a violet aurora swirls. Previously-dormant systems are aggressively powering up, dual-phase shields igniting, upper limbs unfurling and catching the light. Under arcs of electrical provocation, the mimetic alloys of the carapace shift from the appearance of hideous, cataclysmic damage to something that swells with furious strength.The Armory Guardian continues to grow, wreathed in electric flame, bristling with blades. The sensor-cluster heat beams with furious light, the incandescent glow of the Guardian's Booster echoed by the seething arc of the photonic halo that springs to life above it. Thick fingers crunch open, blooming to reveal the ports of Induction Blasters-And - like a flag of rebellion - the Red Joker's mark flares to life on the Armory Guardian's carapace, red and angry, as quad Plasma Vulcans open fire.(Continued)
>>2648611You hurl yourself to the side. It's all you can do, OMEN's tachyon blade burning with emerald radiance, the Sinistral flaring on your left arm as the implacable gunfire begins to roar towards you, ripping into the floor. There is a grind of servos, as the Armory Guardian swings its vast head towards you - Plasma fire shredding the Player corpses underfoot, filling the air with a haze of superheated fluid and chips of metal. Stonework splinters. So do the bodies of the fallen."Joker-" Daegal begins, as he struggles to his feet. "It's been modified-"The roar of missile launch drowns out his words. From the Armory Guardian's back, Triskelion Launchers spin to life - Jetair and flame erupt, a half-dozen rockets boiling towards you in curving arcs. The first tracers find you, as you dodge and weave to evade - The Abruption Jets flinging you away, as your shield takes the first impact. A stray bolt sears your leg, your HUD flashing with damage indicators - But the looping chains of gunfire cut out, as the first missiles passes through the swirling corona of the shield. Green, now. Not violet.Your HUD lights up with the indicators of target-lock, of rockets accelerating towards you on their first and final flight. Behind the shield, you glimpse the Armory Guardian's firing ports blossom with concentric red circles, motes of radiance gathering...Not Induction Blasters at all. Fusion weaponry.Fusion Annihilators.HP: 92.11%VITAE BOOSTER: 140%ASSAULT SHROUD: 132%METER: 36%ENCROACHMENT: 8%YOU HAVE CONTROL
>>2648647Pay for the Volcano Cannons and aim for the Fusion Annihilators. Tell Kaz to swap to energy shield and block with Adamant. We can burn it down as we disable one system at a time.
>>2648647So now it's in kinetic shielding mode.Get dual plasma casters. Shroud Decoy.Try to aim for one of its joints. Use Booster to stay in motion.If we get fired upon again, power up Sinistral to take on the plasma property.>>2648659What volcano cannons?
>>2648659we don't have fusion annihilators>>2648647So it's a Red Joker armed Armory Guardian. I suggest Golgotha equipped, activate Blutsauger, go for the legs. Activate Triskelion launchers and blow it the fuck up.Alternatively, take out our own Fusion Annihilator and start charging while we try to Abjuration Jets behind it and use Catelopras to take out its legs.
>>2648659And fire two missiles to try and detonate the ones fired at us.
>>2648676>>2648679The ones in the Husk. 30 meter and 25% encroachment. They are armor piercing and count as both damage types. Perfect to burn this thing down with
>>2648679>>2648681Guys, are you fucking drunk?The thing just fired its kinetic weapons, switched shield modes and is now charging an energy weapon.It's blatantly immune to kinetic attacks right now.>>2648690>The ones in the Husk.We need to level up to activate new Husk items. They are a type of level up reward.We currently have Golgotha, Forebode and Fatalism.
>>2648647Tell Daegal to aim for the cannons with energy weapons and use Ultimatum to bust it up if it switches to anti-energy. Meanwhile, keep moving, prime Familiar and send them to attack the cannons and shoot the Guardian with the Tau gun. Also, with so many corpses around, we might use Orthrus to teleport away from the blast at the last moment.>>2648679>I suggest Golgotha equipped, activate Blutsauger, go for the legsYou do realize that it has an anti-impact field on and Blutsauger will fuck over Dageal more than it, right?
>>2648700(To clarify, you only have Forebode and Fatalism. You haven't purchased Golgotha yet, which would upgrade the Relic.)
>>2648708Feck. Lets get close and fire double Casters at its Fusion weapons then. Boosted Casters. But also fire a couple of missiles to try and take out the ones it fired.
(Gentlemen, my apologies - It's extremely late, and I need to turn in for the night. I'll continue as soon as I have the opportunity.)
>>2648706>>2648700Aight so just use a plasma caster and catrelopras then. Both are energy weapons.
>>2648816>CatoblepasI feel like that'll have a very minimal effect on a mechanical giant unless we hit something critical (which is up to the dice then). The Havoc Launcher's maser grenades might work better at taking out it's weapons and systems.
Could Golgotha cut through shielding?
Guys, it's a machine, not a player, I don't think Blutsauger will be worth it, do they even have Essence?Seems Daegal has some technical abilities since he could detect it was modified. Maybe we can disable it and have him hack it. Fighting it in this area underground seems like recipe for disaster, plus it has substantially better weapons (our own!) than your normal AG so it probably won't be worth taking on.Let's activate Sotto Voca, it should be effective since it has lots of munitions and energy weapons and use the Crisis Arm to batter it. We could try closing in fast with the Abruption Jets before it finishes charging. Use the Assault Shroud for more afterimages as distraction and if possible bring up the Sinistral, hopefully it works and can resist a blast of high energy plasma. I also suggest using Harrow on it in case it has cloaking properties, and since it's clearly been modified by the previous RJ, maybe it'll recognize our ID and mark? And lastly, if AG cores do have essence, it might be worth disabling by grabbing it and using leech instead. It's a good thing it's not at full power, so give hacking it a thought.>>2648848With enough force, it'll overload it, I imagine.
>>2649587Sotto Voca is a fantastic call and an excellent way to fuck this guy up. I still think Catrelopras on the legs would be a good call too and maybe plasma caster but sotto voce is a must.
>>2648700Wait, what? Plasma weapons are energy weapons! It's been firing plasma weapons, then it switched to missiles. Violet is kinetic, green is energy.
>>2648647>And - like a flag of rebellion - the Red Joker's mark flares to life on the Armory Guardian's carapace, red and angry, as quad Plasma Vulcans open fire.Wait, if it's a Red Joker custom model, shouldn't there be some way to make it recognize us as its master?
>>2650096Nah, it's been made by a Red Joker to guard loot. I doubt we can override so lets just go for the kill.Hasn't killing Armory Guardians always given us neat upgrades anyway? And since it's essence powered, we'll get juice for hurting it I think.
>>2650013Going back to the original Armory Guardian fight, violet was definitely the color of anti-energy. However, anti-kinetic was azure-blue and not green, so that's curious.
>>2648647So it was made by the dude who saved us, most likely.How about sending it this:I̴̥̱̳̙̣͎d̫̼̺̥͞é̳͖̠̱͓̜n̰̬͟t̺̩̫ͅi͉͔̼̹͎̗t̸y̢͔̪̩͉͎̥̻:̛̠̜͉̙ ̪R̺͍̳͈e̯̗̺̖̻͈d̬͝ ̴̩̣̭͈J̩̭̼̹o̶̙̠͈̯͕ͅk͇͉̠̣e̝̪̦͟r̷̜̯͔͇͓̰̝̬̰̬̞̟̥͓͞C̢̞̫̮̩̝o̱̳̞̝̻̳̯m̛̘̥ma̠͈̳̥̳̪͝n̮̪̙̙d̶:̸̟̝̙̖̱̳ ̛̞̰̩S̯̯̳̟̱͍h̩̻̥̘̘u͓̯̥̟̮t͉͇̮ ͚̳D̠͕̱̫̫̱̀o̤̥͈w͈̮̘̘n̖͇͇͓Worst case, nothing will happen.>>2649587Have you missed the part where it's melee attack was blindingly fast?>>2650013Rereading the post:- We get attacked in melee- We counter with Plasma Caster- Armory Guardian powers up its shield (violet) and possibly activates myomer hypertrophy (We should look at the Red Comet's upgrade guide)- It boots up some more, fires plasma vulcans (energy)- It fires missiles (kinetic)- Before the first missile leaves the shield, shield changes to green- Now it's charging Fusion AnnihilatorsSo I assume it's currently in energy mode, but intends to switch once it has charged up.Let's fire dual chain mines while it's charging. They should latch onto the fucker quite well.Shortly before it fires, blast a few maser grenades at its feet, where they'll be encased by the kinetic shield if it switches mode.Let's give it a catch-22.Once it fires the Fusion Annihilators, go with Plasma Casters, active evasion and charged Sinistral if we do get hit.This reminds me, is the Sinistral still damaged?
>>2650392If what you say is correct, then I cancel my vote >>2648706 here.Instead tell Daegal to immediately go at it with Ultimatum while we use a chain mine and the Railgun. Be ready to dodge the blast or teleport with Othrus (assuming we can swap with corpses like we did with Calcite).
>>2650392>>2650431Also, prime the familiars and send them out. They will likely have enough room underneath the shield to assault it.>ultimatumWhich weapon are you referring to?
>>2650821>Which weapon are you referring to?The fucking maul we JUST gave to Daegal.It's right here >>2644306The thing fucks up sensors and optics, so it should be effective against the Armory Guardian.
>>2650431>>2650821Have Daegal use Ultimatum while we use Sotto Voce, hit it in the legs with Catrelopras and then in the face with a plasma caster.
>>2650833>Sotto VoceIt's currently in anti-energy mode if I read the situation correctly.Sotto Voce is effectively a microwave.It also consumes a fuckload of booster.>>2650831Oh fuck.Yeah, if we want to disrupt it, it makes sense. Obviously not the best choice for pure damage, though.
>>2650833We just concluded that the Armory Guardian switched to Anti-Energy while it's charging up its FAs. Everything you suggested falls into the Energy category and thus will currently be useless.However, if you really want to fry the thing, then Maser Grenades will likely work. Just set them to detonate upon command and let them land inside the shield before letting a rip.
>>2650835I think actually IS anti-energy right now> A stray bolt sears your leg, your HUD flashing with damage indicators - But the looping chains of gunfire cut out, as the first missiles passes through the swirling corona of the shield. Green, now. Not violet. So I'd say we can either use Golgotha to fuck it up by going for the legs while Daegal smashes the Ultimatum into its face, or we can use Nova Cannons on the Fusion Annihilators its charging; aren't they highly unstable anyway?>>2650840Yeah I just noticed that myself. Green is anti-energy, violet is anti-kinetic.>>2650835I don't think there's a need to use Disrupt yet, we have space and we can use Disrupt if the Nova Cannons don't blow up the Fusion Annihilators.
>>2650842I honestly don't want to get anywhere near the damn thing with our paltry defenses. Better keep at a distance and try to fuck the FAs.
>>2650844We're a lot faster than it and a lot harder to hit. Our best chance is to get close and rip it up I think. I think standing back opens us up to way too much of its fire power.
>>2650392(To clarify, the Plasma Casters were fired by the Armory Guardian. It appears to have been refitted to incorporate your inherent - Meter and conventional - weaponry.)
>>2653068OP, it seems like the thread is autosaging.Just so you are aware. We are on page ten.
>>2653524(No worries. I'll open up a new thread when I continue.)