Daily Archives: May 4, 2010

The Elite Four wall

Well, I gotta come clean. The Elite Four, more specifically the first member of the league with his/her psychic-themed Pokemon, completely pwned me. Of my six Pokemon I’m currently using, only three are over LV. 40, which seems to be where the Elite Four’s Pokemon start out at. Plus, psychic attacks had my Ho-Oh eating dirt fast, and it’s my strongest fighter at this point.

So you know what that means, right?

Time to grind.

I don’t have a huge problem with this because grinding in Pokemon HeartGold is relatively simple and easy not to pay attention to. What do I mean? Well, you basically find the cave or spot of grass with decent leveled Pokemon, equip the Pokemon you’re not using as your lead-in with the EXP share item, walk around until you get into a fight, spam your hardest attack, repeat until you run low on health or PP, heal up at the closest free healthcare center, and then do it all again. You can also watch TV during all of this.

No, what bothers me more is this severe spike in difficulty. Because if the first member of the Elite Four is trouble enough, you then have to take on three more without a chance for free healing and such. That means…I need all six of my ‘mon in great shape, most likely around LV. 50 to LV. 60. Oh boy. That’s a lot of experience to go around. Or maybe I can get by earlier than that. I will most certainly try, as I really just want to “beat” the game and open up more paths on my Pokewalker (wow, that’s kind of a sad goal).

And I dunno…given the length of the plot and major storyline events, I don’t expect many players to reach the league battle with extremely high level pocket monsters. Maybe one or two, but not a full team. Unless they played previous games before and just loaded in their super powerful team and whooped some major butt. But then phooey on them. It’s us newcomers meant to suffer.

So we’ll see. I’m definitely at a standstill currently. Maybe I can get through them with just four strong ‘mon or maybe I can see if anyone is willing to trade something good my way. The problem, naturally, is I have nothing great to give back, unless HeartGold exclusives count.

Slaying dragons and taking names

Let’s talk about this Achievement I unlocked last night from Dragon Age: Origins, with some light spoilers:

Dragonslayer (30G): Defeated the dragon guarding the Urn of Sacred Ashes

So, the Urn of Sacred Ashes quest is one of the major story-driven quests you can take on whenever you want once you’ve completed the shitstorm at Ostagar. I ended up doing it as my second quest after handling things at Redcliffe, and various forum posters frequently mentioned TO NOT RING THE GONG ON THE MOUNTAIN TOP UNLESS YOU ARE READY FOR A CRAZY BATTLE. I’m paraphrasing there, but the all caps aspect is 100% true. Hmm okay. So I didn’t ring said gong, as I was just a very low level at the time (and playing on Normal difficulty), and then completely forgot about that cutscene where the dragon flew overhead and roared. However, I still got the Urn of Sacred Ashes so…uh, the dragon kind of failed that “guarding” part. Oh well.

But after the Landsmeet, you’re basically told to do anything else you want to do because once you head to Redcliffe again, you’ll be entering the point of no return. Eep. So, last night, I instead ran around to do some more sidequests sitting idle in my questlog, and then remembered the gong. Seeing as my mage was a level 18, and Shale, Alistair, and Morrigan were level 17s, I figured we had a decent shot of taking down a dragon.

And we did, obviously, but it was still a pretty grueling battle. I can only imagine that frustration and heartbreak one might feel taking this dragon on too early in the game. There’s some really great animation work here though, which I hadn’t seen a lot of before because it’s mostly been fights with small-time enemies like bandits, darkspawn, and wolves. The coolest part of the battle happened at the end when Alistair (who I was not controlling) leaped atop the dragon’s head and swung deep with his electrified axe, striking the killing blow. Not sure if that’s scripted or not, but either way, it made the win all the more awesome.

Got some killer loot, too.

With this done, there’s nothing else so major that I want to do before heading for No Return City. Lots of sidequests are still incomplete, but none of them interest me currently, and a couple are based in Redcliffe, meaning…they are impossible to finish at this stage. Woo. So I’m gonna gather my army, try and smooch Leliana one last time, and make a final stand against the darkspawn. For Ferelden!