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I Can Count to Nine: A Journey through Dragon Quest - Part 3

Looking back, I don't know why I said "early 2011" is when we finished these playthroughs. In actuality, the project took us about ten months.


Dragon Quest III (SFC)

Week Seven

DQIII is so awesome. You beat Baramos after a quest easily as long as II's, head home and the victory fanfare starts up and everything before the real villain shows himself. Nope, you're not done yet; you've got to make your way through Alefgard one more time, doing all the same stuff you did in the first game.

*Recruited a Merchant just long enough to found a brand new town, which eventually produced the Yellow Orb.

*Fought the Orochi in a fiery cave to save Zipangu and retrieve the Purple Orb. I know we did this way out of sequence, but the Orochi is a really devestating boss if fought earlier.

*Brought the fight to Baramos, or as we like to call him, Frog Face. It took a few tries, but we managed to beat him at level 33 with cunning use of Stopspell.

*In Alefgard, we got the sun stone, rain staff, and harp again en route to obtaining the rainbow drop. We also awoke Rubiss, the goddess who created Alefgard, at the top of Rubiss tower. Other highlights include doing the swamp cave again for no good reason, playing Pachisi at Kol to obtain the Gringham whip, and digging around in horse crap to find a chunk of Orichalcum, which you have to sell to a certain merchant in order to buy the best sword.

*At level 38, we changed Amy's class to Sage, thus resetting her level to 1 and cutting her stats in half. In the long run, it's really helpful. Sages are the best class in the game and only obtainable using the Zen book.

*Visited the dragon castle back up in the world of III to get the Ball of Light, an item that makes Zoma a LOT weaker.

*Got far enough into Zoma's castle to loot its treasures - most importantly the sage rock, which heals everyone in-battle for free and can be used infinitely - and left. Did some grinding and our party now awaits the final charge. Levels are 43, 42, 42, 32 (Amy reset her level to become a Sage, as mentioned above).


Highlights from the Imperial Scrolls of Honor:
*Chancellor at Aliahan: The King can't help you right now; his ass is glued to the throne.

King: It's true! If you bring me some solvent I will recognize you as a hero!

*For some reason we laughed ourselves silly over an idea we came up with about "Momma Baramos". Think Baramos's sprite with a grey afro, a polka-dotted dress and angular old lady glasses.

*Baramos: I will feast on your innards!

Trinity: You bastard! This is for my father, Ortega!

Barmos: Who? Oh, you mean the guy who fell in a volcano? That was great! But seriously, your innards. Give me a second to tie my bib on...

*To continue their quest, the party had to jump in a big hole (called Gaia's Navel - they say the land below is the land of darkness, but it sounds to me like the land of lint). If you go there before defeating Baramos, you're told that it goes straight down into hell...

Us: So... are we in Hell now?

NPC: Welcome to Alefgard...

Us: Argh! We are!

*In this version the towns have some really lame names. "Domdora" instead of Hauskness is okay I guess, but "Ludatorm" instead of Tantagel? Are you freaking kidding me?

Greeter: Welcome to Ludatorm!

Trinity: Ludatorm? That's dumb. Give me a minute to think of something better...

Greeter: Well, Ludatorm is named for Luda, our founder, who first figured out how to keep monsters at bay using...

Trinity: ...okay, I got one. You're "Tantagel" now.

Greeter: What? B-but... for generations, we...

Trinity: It's Tantagel or we aren't going to kill Zoma.

Greeter: W.... Welcome to Tantagel. ;_;

More highlights:

*Amy learned Transform! She can now transform into other party members.

Amy: Hey, check this out!
[turns into Trinity]
Amy: I'm Trinity, son...DAUGHTER of Ortega. I'm a girl, dammit!

Trinity: Oh geez. Do I really look that mannish?
[Amy turns into Isaac]
Amy: Hey guys. I'm not creepy at all, honest. Now hold on while I put on this fursuit and sniff everyone and everything in sight.

Isaac: I'm not gonna lie; I'm so turned on right now.
[Amy turns into Milo]
Amy: Trinity, be careful! And stop walking that way, it's not ladylike. My moustache demands it!

Milo: Cease that mockery this instant! You don't know how to handle the power of the Stache.

*Actual ingame quote: "So, Sexy becomes Sage... I think it's terrible, but it can't be helped."

*We got all the equipment that doubtless becomes the Erdrick equipment, but Trinity's best armor nonetheless turns out to be... the 95 small medal reward, the Sacred Bikini. That's right, she's going to march up to Zoma, save two worlds and become immortalized as Erdrick, all with barely a stitch on. Ain't nobody calling her a boy now. I like to think she got called a boy one too many times and just snapped. Milo is horrified, of course.

*Trinity: So let me get this straight. Instead of giving us what we need to go save the world, you're going to make us go get some arbitrary "proof" that anybody could conceivably get, thereby screwing us out of said means to save the world?

Old guy: Well, it sounds crude when you put it like that...

Trinity: Man, I hope you teach your descendants better than this.

*Tragically, the party got to Zoma's castle just in time to see Ortega (by the way, he got this far by himself? And without any of that rainbow drop nonsense, either. Ortega needs no rainbow bridge, he briskly hops between continents.) lose his life in battle against King Hydra, the first of Zoma's guardians. The great hero's last words are that he only regrets not having been there for his child... Zoma is going to pay. Stay tuned.

Week Eight

Three down, six to go.

For the record, Thieves are really, really useful. They're always auto-stealing stat seeds, and their sniff and seek out abilities make finding every last hidden goodie in the game a cinch.

*Stormed Zoma's castle and quickly dispatched the minibosses, including King Hydra and a Baramos recolor.

*Used the ball of light to downgrade Zoma from the daunting Razzle Dazzle Blue Raspberry flavor to the more manageable Screaming Orange Blast flavor.

*Gave that rapscallion what for. What for, I say! Won the game at a max party level of about 43.

Highlights from the Imperial Scrolls of Honor:
*Somebody in Alefgard says that their ancestors "migrated through Gaia's Navel." That sounds gross without even thinking about it, but once you do... Alefgard is descended from people who decided to jump into a big hole. This explains so much.

*Zoma busts out another "It is I." What is it with villains and bad grammar?

*King of Luda.... TANTAGEL: You have defeated the Archfiend! You will forever be known as Loto!

Trinity: ...Loto? Man, you people really do suck at naming things. Whatever, I'm just glad it's over with.


King: Do you remember what we were going to call the hero?

Chancellor: Well, I remember they didn't like "Loto"...

King: Okay, how about... Erdrick, then.

Chancellor: Doesn't that sound kind of... misleadingly male?

King: Wait, are you saying that wasn't a man?

Chancellor: *sigh* Never mind, your majesty. Erdrick it is.


And so, Trinity and her friends defeated Zoma, bringing peace to two worlds and delivering light to the dark land of Alefgard. Victory, however, came with a price. In the wake of Zoma's defeat, the hole between the two worlds closed, stranding the four heroes away from their home forever.

Her job done, Trinity found she had lost whatever taste she ever had for glory. She disappeared during the festivities in Tantagel, and when someone thought to search for her they found her sword, shield and armor left in her room at the Inn. These items would become treasured relics that would play important roles when darkness again shadowed the land of Alefgard.

Little is known about the rest of Trinity's life. After spending years as a wanderer, she eventually found a home in Alefgard and bore a child, whose descendants' stories have already been told. Her true name would eventually be forgotten by the ages, but her achievement would always be remembered. And everything that came before, and everything that came after was owed to the heroism of Trinity, the great Erdrick...

...The first Dragon Warrior.

Note: The Super Famicom version of III adds a bonus dungeon made up of rooms from the rest of the game. At the end you fight the dragon god Shenlon, who will grant you one wish each time you beat him, something that would eventually become a recurring element in the series. You can get an extra Pachisi track here, or bring Ortega back to life if you're broken up about his pointless death. It's also reminiscent of Dragon Quest character designer Akira Toriyama's comic book Dragon Ball.
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About tim333one of us since 5:53 PM on 12.11.2007

Regarding my 1001games project: There's only one deadline. I haven't hit it yet!

I'm a 90s gamer and Sega kid for life. I like platformers, adventure games and JRPGs. I'm not that into first-person shooters or sports games.

I spend more of my time playing older games than new ones. I do have a PS3 now, though, and I like buying games on PSN. I like the Wii and have a ton of games for it. I'm encouraged by some of the stuff out on Wiiware - to me, games like Bit.Trip Beat are more appealing than the "triple-A" titles coming out on the HD consoles.

Some of my all-time favorite games are Sonic 3 & Knuckles, Dragon Quest III, Heroes of Might and Magic III, The Curse of Monkey Island, and Dance Dance Revolution.