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Alastor15243

Alastor plays and ranks the whole series! Now Enduring: Three Houses

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2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

Nope, the Balthus paralogue has Monica's dad as a boss, being blackmailed by people who claim to have his daughter, and he clearly loves her a lot.

Ah DLC content...I have never been one to buy those on principle (barring the Fate's route split costs, but those had a very different feel them...)

 

2 hours ago, Jotari said:

One also has to take in the DLC context of the game in this one. The the baron is Monica's father is a reveal in the chapter. He spends the whole chapter talking about saving his daughter, but we only find out said daughter is Monica in his death quote. There is meant to be irony there, we're meant to know that Monica is already dead and that what he was fighting for was hopeless. And we're meant to know that because we already know who Kronya and Monica are. It's not a chapter that's set after part 1, but it's very much written as a chapter where the audience is expected to have played the game already.

That is a fair point, I am guessing the devs felt anyone invested enough to buy the DLC 6ish months after release probably played through the game once already.

2 hours ago, Jotari said:

I don't think if it had been implemented in the base game they would have been coy about Monica's identity like that. In terms of timing I think it makes the most sense in universe before Monica is found at all (where for a blind player playing with the DLC already released, the name Monica would be absolutely meaningless), though just after Kronya's been taken care of makes some amount of sense too (though the dramatic irony is lost a bit there as the baron should know as well as the player does that Monica is {probably} dead).

But they had the opportunity to integrate this DLC content into the main game in a way that makes more sense, like you suggested.

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Three Houses Day 25: Post-Chapter Cleanup

Alright, let's finish up the cutscenes before next free time and see how much time I have left afterwards.

Right, so, Chapter 6 finished off with Jeralt massively death-flagging himself by telling Professr to search his room in the event of his death, and after that, so begins Chapter 7... in which we do the Battle of the Eagle and Lion.

Yet again Dimitri is explaining to me shit I should already know. It's kind of hilarious how much they draw the player's attention to how unqualified the avatar is for their position, but does nothing to make it have any consequences, either dramatic or humorous.

And now they're saying that Manuela and Hanneman are going to sit out the battle, Manuela due to her injury and Hanneman to be fair...

...and yet Manuela insists that Professr participate. She has no issue with Hanneman sitting it out for her sake, but insists that Professr fight.

Frankly this feels idiotic. She's got a whole damned month to recover and she's already on her feet days later. There is no way she isn't going to be perfectly healthy by the time of the battle. So there's no reason for her to sit this out period. And yet if they were in a position where Manuela had to sit things out... why would they single out Professr to be able to participate with her class? Why not just have Manuela sit it out, or, and here's something interesting, maybe actually make this part of the challenge, where the avatar can't participate in this battle?

Of course, the latter isn't really an option, because I'm supposed to take part in the Battle of the Eagle and Lion because the writers think that'll make me feel something when it happens again after the timeskip for real. It won't, because again, thanks to the recruitment system, the odds you'll have to fight a student are inversely proportional to how much you've come to give a shit about them... but that's what they're going for. And having Professr sit the initial battle out might interfere with that. In fact, I think having Manuela and Hanneman sit this out might be deliberate, to make sure that the enemies you're play-fighting now are the same ones you're fighting for real later.

But seriously, this is just dumb, and it's a blatant instance of the narrative nonsensically bending over backwards to give Professr's house special treatment.

...Moving on...

I see green exclamation marks, which means I have paralogues I can do.

...Three of them.

Sylvain's paralogue, Ingrid and Dorothea's paralogue, and...

...Oh, would you look at that! It's Balthus's paralogue! The one I mentioned yesterday!

Looks like we'll have quite a bit to do next week. For now though...

...I want to tell a story.

A story of my first blind, ironman run of this game in Crimson Flower, and the ensuing rapid and painful descent into madness.

Now, as I've said previously, ever since the awesome time I had ironmanning Fates, I made a habit of ironmanning every new game to come out. So, so far I've done blind ironmans of Fates, Echoes (unsuccessfully), and Three Houses. If you count older games, this marathon has caused me to do blind ironmans of 3 and 12 as well (though 3 was sort of a failure too in a sense, since I did restart for a couple of things).

The reason I like to do this is because first off, a blind ironman is really fun for me when the game is built properly for it. But also, as I swiftly came to learn, it makes you hyper-aware of what is and isn't fair about the game's difficulty when the consequences for failure are raised so much.

What I didn't realize at the time was that when I started playing Three Houses, I was starting a blind ironman of the most blind-hostile, ironman-hostile game in the entire franchise.

Three Houses realized every uneasy thought I had been having about the turnwheel system from Echoes. While I can still hold out hope that the differing development teams are to blame, Three Houses still clearly operates as if the turnwheel was never intended as a “don't like it, don't use it” accessibility feature like phoenix mode or casual mode, as its defenders at the time maintained, but instead as a well-balanced special move that the player is expected to make full use of to succeed.

Because in Three Houses, as I said before... it's not “Don't like it? Don't use it” anymore.

It's “Don't like it? Go to Hell.”

Attempting a blind ironman of Three Houses is an exercise in masochism, if you are indeed skilled and unfortunate enough to somehow succeed. I shouldn't have. There are way more timelines where I didn't. And yet I did. And thus I was made to witness every last twist and turn of this horrific death march of paranoia, tightroping across Hanlon's Razorwire, unable to determine whether what I was experiencing was white-hot contempt, or deathly-cold apathy, for anyone who enjoys playing Fire Emblem like I do.

Three Houses does not care how it plays for people who don't use divine pulse. In what I can only assume is an attempt to make divine pulse feel more “exciting” and “cinematic”, the devs made sure that the player will feel the need to use it regardless of skill level. Three Houses has seemingly done everything in its power to make sure that even the best Fire Emblem player on earth would feel the need to use divine pulse at some point unless they got astronomically lucky. Three Houses doesn't care about challenging you, it just wants you to die.

I know what you're thinking: lots and lots and lots of unfair ambush spawns, right?

Oh. Oh you poor sweet naive child. You have no idea.

Three Houses is far more creative than that. In fact I think it's safe to say it's one of the elements of the game with the most creativity put behind it.

Three Houses is a game that, even ignoring Maddening mode, is willing to:

  • Spawn reinforcements in the middle of your turn in response to you moving one of your units or meeting some objective

  • Spawn reinforcements in response to previous enemies being killed, regardless of which phase this happens on

  • Just generally spawn reinforcements in far more massive quantities than any other Fire Emblem game I can think of

  • Take units marked as having 0 mov and then give them their movement back on enemy phase

  • Have units, on enemy phase, spontaneously change stats, mov, weapon rank, weapon type, class, and size before attacking you

  • Add new defeat conditions mid-battle

  • Create a fake fucking victory condition, and then summon tripwire reinforcements all over the map if you so much as attempt to fulfill it

I'd like you to just try to imagine the headspace of someone attempting to do a blind ironman of that. After experiencing each and every one of those mind-bending curve-balls and surviving them by a combination of 20% skill and 80% dumb, cruel luck. Seeing every rule it's willing to break just to fuck with you.

What wouldn't you think the game is willing to do after all that? What's left that's sacred? When the victory condition screen itself has violated your trust in the name of a cheap surprise, what remains to put past the game? What would be too cruel? What would be too weird? What would be too ridiculous? What would be too unfair?

The answer, of course, is nothing. The game has set a precedent that literally every stat, every unit, every single point of data about a map is liable to be re-written at a moment's notice on the devs' whims.

By the final stretch of the game, I was a paranoid wreck. Tiptoe-ing my army forward one unit at a time. Never, ever splitting up. Making sure I always had as many units as possible around to react to whatever madness the game decided to throw at me. Knowing a swift and merciless death could come at any time, in any form, for any reason. Holding my breath in dread of tripwire reinforcements even after I had killed the final boss.

It was the single most stressful gaming experience I have ever had. And that's to say nothing of the fact that by the second half of the game, you stop getting new recruits, so if any one of these things had gone wrong, as they all continuously threatened to, I would have suffered a permanent and grievous crippling of my army. If just one of those multiple consecutive 60-70% raging storm attacks had missed in Foreign Land and Sky, up to a third of my army would have died right then and there.

And the finally cherry on top of how unpleasant this was?

That was the only way the game knew how to be hard.

Those moments, those moments of scrambling to salvage the ridiculously unfair situations I was put in, are the only times I ever remember being challenged by this game.

That was my first run of Three Houses in a nutshell. Hours spent doing tedious busywork to give myself the best chance for survival, punctuated by brief and horrifying battles that I knew full well could kill me for no reason at literally any moment.

...I'm running out of time to proofread this, so I'm going to leave this here for today.

Stay safe, everyone.

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6 hours ago, Florete said:

This is just me, of course, but I actually did take a break after my first two runs (CF and VW) before jumping into my 3rd (AM), and it didn't do much. Then again, while I didn't want to accept it at the time, I was already getting bored of the game on my 1st route. I took a week off work starting the day of the game's release, and combined with a weekend I had about 9 days, yet I didn't even finish Crimson Flower in that time because I kept taking breaks because the game just wasn't holding my attention.

How do you skip Silver Snow, though? Do you just mean skipping the cutscenes? 

I meant more like not doing that particular route at all considering the chapters are not only mostly the same as Verdant Wind, but even has a chaptet missing.

I don't know about you, but I generally take breaks every now and then. By the time I finish a game (or reach the final boss in the main story of a Pokemon game), I generally spend 80+ hours. Playing something nine days straight would not only be just pure torture for me, it wouldn't give me enough time to finish a game either. Even with me currently playing Pokemon Shield, I can only last four hours at most, and to be honest, it's for the best.

I ended up taking an entire year to finish CF, although that was because I'm an adult with actual commitments, so it was more like one session per week, and mixing it up with other games.

Edited by henrymidfields

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4 hours ago, Jotari said:

Snip

You meme, but John Taylor Gatto (former Teach of the Year for the state of New York) has written some pretty damning works on the subject.

1 hour ago, Alastor15243 said:

tightroping across Hanlon's Razorwire

Perhaps it is mere stupidity- but I would not be so quick to rule out malice either.

1 hour ago, Alastor15243 said:

Holding my breath in dread of tripwire reinforcements even after I had killed the final boss.

>StalinMoment.mp4

To be honest, that would have been a pretty epic troll. A real Kojima moment. The first Strand-type dating simulator.

1 hour ago, Alastor15243 said:

And that's to say nothing of the fact that by the second half of the game, you stop getting new recruits

Which is not only ridiculous, but so out of line with Fire Emblem's traditions that it baffles one to think of how things ended up this way. There are already characters you could conceivably recruit without shaking up the story much, like Ladislava and Randolph (I only played Azure Moon, I don't know if they die on Crimson Flower or whatever, but the point remains). They were so focused on their precious monastery they couldn't give you a character who hadn't set foot in it before the timeskip. You rightly point out how you're likely to recruit the students if you care about them, but post-timeskip character would have suited their contrived tragedy goal even more, since you couldn't actually recruit them to other houses.

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3 minutes ago, AnonymousSpeed said:

Which is not only ridiculous, but so out of line with Fire Emblem's traditions that it baffles one to think of how things ended up this way. There are already characters you could conceivably recruit without shaking up the story much, like Ladislava and Randolph (I only played Azure Moon, I don't know if they die on Crimson Flower or whatever, but the point remains). They were so focused on their precious monastery they couldn't give you a character who hadn't set foot in it before the timeskip. You rightly point out how you're likely to recruit the students if you care about them, but post-timeskip character would have suited their contrived tragedy goal even more, since you couldn't actually recruit them to other houses.

I know! It's insane! There are so many characters who could have joined the party after the timeskip, but they're all contributing to the war effort offscreen or as NPCs!

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1 hour ago, Alastor15243 said:

I know! It's insane! There are so many characters who could have joined the party after the timeskip, but they're all contributing to the war effort offscreen or as NPCs!

Yeah that's dumb.

On your topic of false information.

I'm playing through Seteth and Flayn's Paralogue (Which I honestly like for how Seteth, the normally relatively calm character is absolutely furious during it.) and the game displayed the enemy as NOT trying to attack any of my units near the end of it, since I thought they were all fleeing (or at least the priests were) I wasn't worried...only for both of them to attack my units.

I checked just before ending my turn, they had NONE of the Combat stuff, no line pointing towards my units, no combat forecast, nothing.

This may be unpopular, but I'd rather have NO info (AKA just the Unit range of GBA Games) that I can consistently relying on, rather than ending up doing dumb stuff and having to  Divine Pulse because the game's faulty info made me think the AI would prioritize escaping over fighting.

Edited by Samz707

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1 hour ago, AnonymousSpeed said:

Which is not only ridiculous, but so out of line with Fire Emblem's traditions that it baffles one to think of how things ended up this way. There are already characters you could conceivably recruit without shaking up the story much, like Ladislava and Randolph (I only played Azure Moon, I don't know if they die on Crimson Flower or whatever, but the point remains). They were so focused on their precious monastery they couldn't give you a character who hadn't set foot in it before the timeskip. You rightly point out how you're likely to recruit the students if you care about them, but post-timeskip character would have suited their contrived tragedy goal even more, since you couldn't actually recruit them to other houses.

Meh. That's more just different heads from different regiments talking to each other. Hardly ridiculous compared to a tiny-ass size of what I can barely describe as a full size regiment somehow coming on top like Blazing Blade. I didn't even notice this until someone nitpicked it for me. Some things are bound to change, and I'd be happy to fucking get over it.

Edited by henrymidfields

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2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

 

Three Houses is far more creative than that. In fact I think it's safe to say it's one of the elements of the game with the most creativity put behind it.

Creative is a charitable way to describe it, most of these are things that happen in earlier game (or something similar to it), but just dialed up to 11 in Three Houses, and made worse by moronic design decisions.

 

2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

 

  • Spawn reinforcements in the middle of your turn in response to you moving one of your units or meeting some objective

Very similar to Birthright chapter 17, where visiting villages, one of the time honored side objectives of the series, instead spawns enemies in the middle of your turn.

 

2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:
  • Spawn reinforcements in response to previous enemies being killed, regardless of which phase this happens on

A lot like how the "stealth" mechanics of Path of Radiance chapter 10 work, but any combat (not simply killing) triggers the reinforcements on any phase.

 

2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:
  • Just generally spawn reinforcements in far more massive quantities than any other Fire Emblem game I can think of

Again, reinforcements are nothing new, Three Houses just dialed things up to 11.

 

2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:
  • Take units marked as having 0 mov and then give them their movement back on enemy phase

The only major difference between this, and earlier games is they tell you when units have "0 move".

 

2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:
  • Have units, on enemy phase, spontaneously change stats, mov, weapon rank, weapon type, class, and size before attacking you

Kind of like how the Path of Radiance/Radiant Dawn Laguz getting their stats changed when they transform on enemy phase, it is better telegraphed that they can do this in the Tellius games , although Path of Radiance's inconsistent stat boosts for transformation makes it still kinda suspect (plus the gains to move are extra mean...). Also there were times when a Boss switches who they are mid-chapter (although in earlier games its common for this to occur at times where its unlikely to impact the player, like Binding Blade chapter 12). Shadow Dragon not revealing the stat bonuses attached to dragon stones in any way seems kinda similar as well.

 

2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:
  • Add new defeat conditions mid-battle

Kinda like Ephraim being killed being added to the defeat conditions of Sacred Stones chapter 8 after turn 2, or keeping partner Tibarn alive in Radiant Dawn chapter 3-11 after you trigger his appearance by crossing an invisible line (and some of the crossbow enemies can one-shot him on this map).

 

2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:
  • Create a fake fucking victory condition, and then summon tripwire reinforcements all over the map if you so much as attempt to fulfill it

Radiant Dawn 3-E does lie about its victory conditions. It doesn't ambush you like THAT paralogue, but if you don't know the victory condition is lying to you, you will play differently, and might push further than you should...

 

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5 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

Three Houses is a game that, even ignoring Maddening mode, is willing to:

Hey, if you include Maddening you even get reinforcements from stairs while you stand on them (though I know of only on such case: AM final map). 

2 hours ago, Samz707 said:

On your topic of false information.

I'm playing through Seteth and Flayn's Paralogue (Which I honestly like for how Seteth, the normally relatively calm character is absolutely furious during it.) and the game displayed the enemy as NOT trying to attack any of my units near the end of it, since I thought they were all fleeing (or at least the priests were) I wasn't worried...only for both of them to attack my units.

While there is something to be said about TH conditioning you to rely on the leyline of aggression, thus making what I´m about to say kinda grey-area-ish, what about FE in general suggests that putting units blindly in range of enemies that can attack is a good idea?

Just cause it doesn´t tell you that it can happen doesn´t mean it won´t happen.

Though I´d be curious if that is some kind of bug or something - I have witnessed some cases where even the leylines were not accurate. Makes me think it might be some Civ6-refreshing kinda deal for the AI

48 minutes ago, Eltosian Kadath said:

Very similar to Birthright chapter 17, where visiting villages, one of the time honored side objectives of the series, instead spawns enemies in the middle of your turn.

The difference being the map looks ridiculous with only Flora on the map, which should set off some alarm bells as well as the first village having relatively weak reinforcements. And visiting a village is a far more deliberate than "cross the invisible line". 

 

Edited by Imuabicus

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8 hours ago, Jotari said:

I think they mean just not ever playing Silver Snow. As beyond the Rhea boss battle, it really doesn't offer anything at all.

 

3 hours ago, henrymidfields said:

I meant more like not doing that particular route at all considering the chapters are not only mostly the same as Verdant Wind, but even has a chaptet missing.

I don't know about you, but I generally take breaks every now and then. By the time I finish a game (or reach the final boss in the main story of a Pokemon game), I generally spend 80+ hours. Playing something nine days straight would not only be just pure torture for me, it wouldn't give me enough time to finish a game either. Even with me currently playing Pokemon Shield, I can only last four hours at most, and to be honest, it's for the best.

I ended up taking an entire year to finish CF, although that was because I'm an adult with actual commitments, so it was more like one session per week, and mixing it up with other games.

So for some reason I mixed up route names and was thinking of White Clouds. I was wondering how you skip the entire first half of the game. So yeah, if that question seemed odd, that's why.

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7 hours ago, Eltosian Kadath said:

Ah DLC content...I have never been one to buy those on principle (barring the Fate's route split costs, but those had a very different feel them...)

 

That is a fair point, I am guessing the devs felt anyone invested enough to buy the DLC 6ish months after release probably played through the game once already.

But they had the opportunity to integrate this DLC content into the main game in a way that makes more sense, like you suggested.

The DLC is integrated into the main game. It is a normal paralogue like any other and someone playing through the game after the release of DLC probably wouldn't even notice it is DLC if they bought it all at once. And I don't think the manner in which they went about writing it was a particularly bad way of handling it. Yes, it admittedly doesn't make sense from an inuniverse linear standpoint, but the way in which it's written, with him being Monica's dad is pulled off as a reveal, does do it's job for conveying an emotional reaction. A more standard paralogue for Balthus to get his weapon (or just letting him have it from the start to actually maintain continuity with Cindered Shadows) is definitely possible, but it'd also be kind of boring (well potentially boring, if they could make something exciting enough then great, but that's kind of hard for paralogues of this nature). I don't really blame the paralogue for the lack of sense, the paralogue had something it set out to do and accomplished it, it's more the main story for not considering the life of Monica as an extant one with people who would have cared for her and killing her off retroactively without giving any weight to the life lost.

5 hours ago, AnonymousSpeed said:

You meme, but John Taylor Gatto (former Teach of the Year for the state of New York) has written some pretty damning works on the subject.

Nah, man, it's actually a theme of the song. Roger Waters's grandfather was literally a coal miner, and his dad was a teacher (not that he ever knew either of them, but still, same cultural sphere and all).

Quote

Which is not only ridiculous, but so out of line with Fire Emblem's traditions that it baffles one to think of how things ended up this way. There are already characters you could conceivably recruit without shaking up the story much, like Ladislava and Randolph (I only played Azure Moon, I don't know if they die on Crimson Flower or whatever, but the point remains). They were so focused on their precious monastery they couldn't give you a character who hadn't set foot in it before the timeskip. You rightly point out how you're likely to recruit the students if you care about them, but post-timeskip character would have suited their contrived tragedy goal even more, since you couldn't actually recruit them to other houses.

There's also the dozens of named characters that make up the elaborate genealogy of the noble system who are name dropped but just plain never seen. It'd be so damn interesting to see Bernadetta's father as an actual character you're forced to work alongside (or in other routes kill).

 

 

Edited by Jotari

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3 hours ago, Samz707 said:

 

This may be unpopular, but I'd rather have NO info (AKA just the Unit range of GBA Games) that I can consistently relying on, rather than ending up doing dumb stuff and having to  Divine Pulse because the game's faulty info made me think the AI would prioritize escaping over fighting.

I kinda agree with you, but in a more extreme sense. I don't think AI information, like whether a unit will move, or who they will attack, should be available to the player, even if it was accurate.

 

1 hour ago, Imuabicus said:

Hey, if you include Maddening you even get reinforcements from stairs while you stand on them (though I know of only on such case: AM final map). 

To be fair, whether you can, or can't block reinforcements is one of those frustratingly obscure, and inconsistent features in the franchise. Its not even always consistent within the same game mode, for one example that comes immediately to mind, Lunatic Fates chapter 5 has unblockable reinforcements, but Lunatic Conquest chapter 26 reinforcements are blockable.

 

1 hour ago, Imuabicus said:

The difference being the map looks ridiculous with only Flora on the map, which should set off some alarm bells as well as the first village having relatively weak reinforcements. And visiting a village is a far more deliberate than "cross the invisible line". 

Don't get me wrong, Birthright used the concept in a way that was far better telegraphed, but Three Houses was still cheating off of Birthright's homework when they did the same sort of idea again. Plus the chapter immediately after that looks just as ludicrous with only Leo and his retainers starting on the map, with a completely different gimmick in mind...

Side note, I think the big problem with most of @Alastor15243's list of complaints there is less what they are, and more that they are so poorly telegraphed that blind play ends up treacherous.

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25 minutes ago, Eltosian Kadath said:

Side note, I think the big problem with most of @Alastor15243's list of complaints there is less what they are, and more that they are so poorly telegraphed that blind play ends up treacherous.

Honestly, no. That's obviously unacceptable, but what takes it beyond the pale is the sheer variety. The sheer number of different ways the game fucks you over sets a nigh-unbearable precedent that nothing is sacred and nothing can be trusted, not even the things they've already established. You mentioned things that ranged from very to vaguely similar from around half a dozen different games, but the kicker for me is that this one game does all of those things at once.

Edited by Alastor15243

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1 hour ago, Alastor15243 said:

Honestly, no. That's obviously unacceptable, but what takes it beyond the pale is the sheer variety. The sheer number of different ways the game fucks you over sets a nigh-unbearable precedent that nothing is sacred and nothing can be trusted, not even the things they've already established. You mentioned things that ranged from very to vaguely similar from around half a dozen different games, but the kicker for me is that this one game does all of those things at once.

I guess they decided to go back to that old FE7 commercial for ideas...

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I remember complaining about something along these lines earlier in this thread too. 3H updates victory conditions mid-map, and sometimes you're too far along to do anything in response to it other than using fucking Divine Pulse and basically playing the map over again. And I feel like this happened more times than it really should have, and it did not make the game any more fun or challenging, just irritating.

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9 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

Spawn reinforcements in the middle of your turn in response to you moving one of your units or meeting some objective

The evil part of me can’t wait to watch you play the Balthus paralogue because I know you’re going to tear it several new ones. Somebody say 5 fucking zone based reinforcements?

 

9 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

...and yet Manuela insists that Professr participate. She has no issue with Hanneman sitting it out for her sake, but insists that Professr fight.

Frankly this feels idiotic. She's got a whole damned month to recover and she's already on her feet days later. There is no way she isn't going to be perfectly healthy by the time of the battle. So there's no reason for her to sit this out period. And yet if they were in a position where Manuela had to sit things out... why would they single out Professr to be able to participate with her class? Why not just have Manuela sit it out, or, and here's something interesting, maybe actually make this part of the challenge, where the avatar can't participate in this battle?

Wait did you actually name your avatar “Professr”?

Because if so I respect that.

Anyway. Yeah this is a weird one. Made even odder by the fact that they let you kick the crap out of both Hanneman and Manuela in chapter 1. It’s not even like you fight them post timeskip anyway (aside from one paralogue that’s route exclusive) so they definitely could have put them in both Gronders.

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4 hours ago, Jotari said:

Nah, man, it's actually a theme of the song. Roger Waters's grandfather was literally a coal miner, and his dad was a teacher (not that he ever knew either of them, but still, same cultural sphere and all).

Ah, my mistake. I underestimated you and the song in that case.

5 hours ago, Eltosian Kadath said:

The only major difference between this, and earlier games is they tell you when units have "0 move".

While on a strictly technical level the game has been more transparent, on a psychological level it has spat burned your crops, poisoned your water supply, and put you through CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy). It has promised you one thing and then taken it away- you don't feel cheated when enemies behave in whatever manner when you don't know what they're doing. When the game says the enemies will do one thing and they end up doing another, you have essentially been lied to. Had the game said nothing, it would not have been a problem at all.

6 hours ago, henrymidfields said:

Meh. That's more just different heads from different regiments talking to each other. Hardly ridiculous compared to a tiny-ass size of what I can barely describe as a full size regiment somehow coming on top like Blazing Blade. I didn't even notice this until someone nitpicked it for me. Some things are bound to change, and I'd be happy to fucking get over it.

Sure, but as a game, the prime concern should be with the gameplay. Since Three Houses at least pretends like permadeath is supposed to be there, it should address the very real gameplay possibility that you will lose units in the second half of the game and need replacements for them. The particular characters don't matter as much as the fact that you get none.

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On 9/9/2021 at 4:03 PM, Alastor15243 said:

Anyway, this is one of my least favorite maps in the game. It's a mess of warp tiles, and unlike in Fates, the game doesn't tell you which tiles lead where. It's an annoying, winding maze that is also a rout map if you don't have Lysithea, and to top it all off, it's also the first chapter to properly introduce the bane of my fucking existence.

I genuinely don't understand why they couldn't use blue lines to show you where each one warps to. Like the red "aggro lines" from the enemies. That said, it's a weirdly-underused "single map gimmick" in a game that doesn't do so much of that.

On 9/9/2021 at 5:04 PM, Shadow Mir said:

Even on other routes where Lysithea isn't part of your initial roster? Anyway, I find the March Ring reason enough to go there.

You don't really need Lysithea here. If you have Sylvain, and his Lance of Ruin, the Knightkneeler art is nearly a one-shot. Just soften him up with gambits beforehand.

On 9/9/2021 at 4:03 PM, Alastor15243 said:

Surely, Rhea, surely the bullshit that's going to ensue with Monica, where nobody finds out the massive bit of deception going on here, isn't solely capable of happening because not one of the strip club's worth of boobs in your employ ever had the presence of mind to contact this kidnapped fucking child's next of kin?

"LMAO we thought she ran away, our b."

Once again. the Church's arrogance manifests as incompetence.

On 9/9/2021 at 4:03 PM, Alastor15243 said:

Ingrid's low magic is really starting to frustrate me. I wonder if there's any way I can fix that. The minimum base stats of the various classes are pretty shitty. Even if I promoted to warlock this very instant it would only award her +8.

I may have to ditch the idea of her being a dark flier if things don't improve.

Ingrid's Strength isn't all that much better, though. And Dark Flier gives her a damage boost via Black Tomefaire. Add in Fiendish Blow and Magic +2, and that's 13 free damage per hit. If she's doubling, she's probably gonna kill foes on Hard, even with a lackluster Magic stat.

On 9/10/2021 at 12:03 AM, henrymidfields said:

Admittedly you'll miss an S-support with Rhea, but Silver Snow has the same War Phase chapters as Verdant Wind, except one chapter missing and one changed somewhat. I'm a fan of Three Houses, but now I have the answers, even I think Silver Snow would just be a waste of time. I would just do Azure Moon and Verdant Wind, and just call it quits.

Silver Snow's one great point as a route was its endgame, but that honestly wasn't enough to salvage what was otherwise "Verdant Wind, but worse". I don't regret playing it, but it's at the bottom of my "routes to replay" list. Yes, even behind Cindered Shadows.

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Three Houses Day 26: Chapter 7 Week 1

Okay, enough of this dumb entry naming stuff, I haven't been able to come up with good names for this shit for ages. I'll just say where I am in the story like I do in the games with more concrete chapter systems.

Alright, let's go. Another month, another shipment of 3 intermediate seals I can buy. I use the first to make Dimitri a brigand, but I don't reclass him quite yet. Reposition is a really good ability I want him to learn in soldier first, especially since I don't have many soldiers in my army. Also, apparently his magic was so shitty that brigand boosted it by 2.

Second one was used to make Ingrid a mage. This boosted her magic by one, and fiendish blow will boost her offense further, so hopefully that'll be enough. I'll also make sure she has mag+2 equipped as well, for good measure.

...Yep, she already does, because she hadn't gotten 5 skills yet.

Right, I'll save that third seal for now. time to do the first exploration of the month. Then I'll probably do two battles next free time for paralogues, and... we'll see how things go from there.

I'm doing the fishing tournament quest, and Flayn tells me to show her any fish I catch... but there's no option to do so for the ones I've already caught, so I guess I have to wait for a golden fish to show up. I couldn't remember if that happens here or if the five-star fish I found were enough. Apparently it's the former.

Yep, found it.

...And it just gave me another Teutates herring. But I did it perfect, and that's something I got from a red catch!

...But apparently that was what she wanted...? Ugh. I kept going trying to get another golden catch, but 13 baits in (even after letting multiple fish bite each bait) I only got the one, so I checked just to be sure, and...

...Whatever, what do I get for this?

...Pure water and a fishing float.

Yaaaaay.

Got another battle quest from a generic female knight, guess we can do that at some point. They're never particularly interestingly-designed, but then, neither is a single formation in the main game, so...

Oh god, it's High Simp Lord Aelfric.

Oh, and another battle quest from another generic. Looks like we have enough to justify going on two battle weekends this month. Goodie.

The game doesn't tell you how many of any item you're buying you already have, but thankfully you can just max out your purchase and see how many they'll let you buy.

Honestly, I weirdly miss the comments characters used to make when you buy, sell and forge things in their inventories. Despite not being a fan of much of the cast, I still feel some of them would have some pretty dang amusing comments about Professr trying to sell their shit.

...Okay, I just discovered something pretty dang bizarre. So, when you walk into the marketplace during exploration, the marketplace music fades in mid-song, making me assume all this time that it's been playing continuously since you started exploration and you only start hearing it when you go in. Like calm and ablaze tracks, but different songs.

...Not so.

Go to the marketplace, go up the stairs a little and then run back... the music doesn't just briefly fade out and then seamlessly continue. It restarts completely... from the exact same mid-song segment every time.

Alright, we've got another love letter to deliver, this time from a female student with a DILF fetish apparently, because I'm pretty certain this is for Alois. ...Is Alois a single dad, or is this teenager just... shamelessly hitting on a married man, and citing his devotion to his family as one of the things that makes her want him?

Also, these are the laziest love letters I've ever seen. They're barely even a paragraph, and they're just repeating the “clues” we were given for who it's for!

Okay, so the special meal today, thankfully, is one of Flayn's favorites, so we can get her motivation up pretty easy without using resources, and now... some start-of-chapter sauna work.

...Okay, that is just not fair. While I managed to get both Professr and Felix refreshed simultaneously for that big +4, when I used the increase steam option on Sylvain, his meter instantly damned near filled up to green, while Professr's increased by, like, the high end of the “stay longer” option. Well, Professr has the big boost either way, so I guess I'm not gonna push too hard for simultaneous with everyone. Last time I tried that nearly everyone overheated.

Oh, looks like I got some supports for Professr. Let's go to these locations to see them.

So I run into Felix on the balcony overlooking the fishing pond...

...and the support conversation opens up in the training grounds. Seriously, why couldn't I have just met Felix there? That would actually make this “go to this place on the map to start the support conversation” thing actually feel like it has a point to it.

I just noticed that Felix's portrait's eyes are constantly looking away from you, off to the side.

But yeah, Felix's B support with Professr is basically just Felix talking about searching for his “hunger”, by which he means his reason to fight, to strive for victory above all else, something he says is superior to being like knights. I... think I'm getting a good sense of Felix's character, but there are still a few things that strike me as unclear.

And I was reminded about renown being a reward for quests when I saw it after reporting back about the love letter, and yeah, I just unlocked two of the four divine pulse uses they give you at the saint statues. I could'v gotten all four, but uh, since I hope to go as long as possible without using them, only doing it to avoid significantly wasting my time and yours, I'm not interested in getting that many more. I was mostly just trying to get past them, specifically for now to get the axe and bow training bonuses, which will be great for Sylvain and Dimitri, among others.

Alright, time for lessons, and...

Okay, so, usual stuff, but I also finally managed to get Ingrid to D in faith so she can start healing, and also I'm working on Flayn's budding talent in reason, because I'm pretty sure I want to make her a dark flier as well.

Alright, looks like I've got a support with Sylvain too.

And yeah, this is where he makes it clear that his main goal right now is having fun quite literally “screwing around” while he can before he's put in an arranged marriage, and that he genuinely believes that all those commoner girls he's been messing around with are opportunistic gold-diggers who just want to marry him for the major status boost, which is why he feels no guilt about emotionally manipulating them for sex. That is such an outrageously dark and misanthropic worldview that I'm surprised we didn't get a chance to push back against that more significantly.

And then... uh... this happens:

Sylvain: You know what? I'm a bit jealous. The whole time you were growing up, you never knew you had a Crest. You were free. Nobody pretended to like you. I kind of hate you for that... You were a spoiled brat who should pay for that Crest. Maybe I'll collect the debt.

He immediately says he was joking, but I'm kind of concerned as to what exactly he was implying with that “joke” in the first place. “Collect the debt” how?

Weekly student chore time:

Annette: Together is better!

Ingrid: Yes. Together!

...I don't think that's a deliberate combo line between them. If it is, it's the clumsiest thing ever. And yet as a random combo, it's kind of amusing.

Dedue just got one-two punch, Ingrid got heal, Flayn got hit and run and lance prowess 3... and that's it for today. Tomorrow I'm going to do a paralogue and a dumb quest battle, if I have the time.

Stay safe, everyone.

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On 9/6/2021 at 6:27 PM, Alastor15243 said:

...Ooh! The Duscur paralogue!

Oh, right. The paralogue. The paralogue for Dedue, the paralogue chosen especially to save Dedue, Dedue's paralogue. That paralogue?

I find this incredibly funny for some reason.

2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

...Okay, that is just not fair. While I managed to get both Professr and Felix refreshed simultaneously for that big +4, when I used the increase steam option on Sylvain, his meter instantly damned near filled up to green, while Professr's increased by, like, the high end of the “stay longer” option. Well, Professr has the big boost either way, so I guess I'm not gonna push too hard for simultaneous with everyone. Last time I tried that nearly everyone overheated.

Doesn´t the boost get reset if you mess up - I seem to remember having Prof ending on a high note with the secon last character, but then losing the bonus due to messing up the last student. 

2 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

Sylvain: You know what? I'm a bit jealous. The whole time you were growing up, you never knew you had a Crest. You were free. Nobody pretended to like you. I kind of hate you for that... You were a spoiled brat who should pay for that Crest. Maybe I'll collect the debt.

It was at this moment Sylvain found out, that Byleth does indeed have an E+ Brawling rank. 

What a thing to say to a mercenary.

Edited by Imuabicus

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7 minutes ago, Imuabicus said:

Doesn´t the boost get reset if you mess up - I seem to remember having Prof ending on a high note with the secon last character, but then losing the bonus due to messing up the last student. 

If you screw up and overheat? Maybe. But not if you get the full bonus and then undershoot it when you go back in.

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4 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

Alright, we've got another love letter to deliver, this time from a female student with a DILF fetish apparently, because I'm pretty certain this is for Alois. ...Is Alois a single dad, or is this teenager just... shamelessly hitting on a married man, and citing his devotion to his family as one of the things that makes her want him?

To be sexist towards both genders...that doesn't stop a lot of people.

 

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On 9/11/2021 at 9:15 AM, Shanty Pete's 1st Mate said:

You don't really need Lysithea here. If you have Sylvain, and his Lance of Ruin, the Knightkneeler art is nearly a one-shot. Just soften him up with gambits beforehand.

In other words, this sounds like something I can only really do on BL, because I have no intent on picking a female Byleth. EVER.

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21 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

...Okay, that is just not fair. While I managed to get both Professr and Felix refreshed simultaneously for that big +4, when I used the increase steam option on Sylvain, his meter instantly damned near filled up to green, while Professr's increased by, like, the high end of the “stay longer” option. Well, Professr has the big boost either way, so I guess I'm not gonna push too hard for simultaneous with everyone. Last time I tried that nearly everyone overheated.

sauna.exe

21 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

Also, these are the laziest love letters I've ever seen. They're barely even a paragraph, and they're just repeating the “clues” we were given for who it's for!

I don't believe we (the player) ever get to read the content of the love letters, just the quest clues associated with them. Unless there's something I'm missing.

21 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

Alright, let's go. Another month, another shipment of 3 intermediate seals I can buy. I use the first to make Dimitri a brigand, but I don't reclass him quite yet. Reposition is a really good ability I want him to learn in soldier first, especially since I don't have many soldiers in my army. Also, apparently his magic was so shitty that brigand boosted it by 2.

Reposition is great, especially on fliers, since they can occupy otherwise untraversable tiles. I'm currently loving it on Wyvern Hilda.

21 hours ago, Alastor15243 said:

...Whatever, what do I get for this?

...Pure water and a fishing float.

Yaaaaay.

I take it you didn't chat with the people around the pond? You can get items and weapons from many of them after catching a 5-star fish. Unfortunately, I think this is exclusive to the weekend of the Fishing contest.

19 hours ago, Imuabicus said:

Oh, right. The paralogue. The paralogue for Dedue, the paralogue chosen especially to save Dedue, Dedue's paralogue. That paralogue?

...Yes, that paralogue.

10 hours ago, Shadow Mir said:

In other words, this sounds like something I can only really do on BL, because I have no intent on picking a female Byleth. EVER.

That sounds like a "you problem". It's not my fault that you won't make choices that make for an easier playthrough.

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