Tag Archives: Musashi: Samurai Legend

Escorting Emma Emmerich is not very enjoyable

escorting emma emmerich

I remembered next to nothing about Emma Emmerich and her little side story involvement in Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty. I wrote next to nothing because, for some reason, I did recall her cute, chatty parrot. Just not her. I suspect this has more to do with how she throws a wrench into the game’s stealth-heavy gameplay rather than her somber life story and damaged relationship with big bro Hal. Plus, she’s completely dismissible, which is a shame since the game forces you to protect, only to watch, via a cutscene, as she succumbs to her untouchable fate.

See, after taking down the Twilight-loving Vamp yet again, you rescue her from a part of Big Shell that is beginning to flood due to explosions. That’s not really a problem for Raiden, who can swim as good as any otter these days. However, Emma is terrified of water after a traumatic experience as a kid, and she’s also been injected with something that makes her legs extremely weak, meaning Raiden has to carry her on his back while underwater, as well as pull her along when on dry ground. Yup, you are now an officially unpaid babysitter, and you need to get Emma over to the computer room at the bottom of Shell 1’s core; it’s not a far walk, but it’s a troublesome one nonetheless.

The underwater parts were not as tricky as I initially feared. You just had to memorize the path and make sure you went up for air more frequently than before because Emma’s got teeny tiny lungs. I ran into frustration in the sections of Big Shell where enemies were on patrol. First, I tried to sneak her past everyone, but kept getting spotted; the moment the enemy is on us, Emma just sits down and gives up, letting the bullets mix with tears of defeat. That meant I had to get down and dirty and simply murder everyone and everything (sky-high cyphers) just so we could creep leisurely from one strut to another. Ideally, it’s not how I wanted to do things, but sometimes you got to snap necks to ensure the weak-kneed make it out alive.

Oh, and there’s one part where a bunch of bugs are covering the floor and walls near an elevator. Emma refuses to go any further until the bugs are gone. You have two options: clear away the bugs with the coolant spray or knock her out and drag her body along. I did the former, but when doing some light research for this post, I found many “gamers” touting proudly and triumphantly that they knocked her lights out. For shame.

All of that naturally got me thinking about other escort missions, and how I really do loathe being put into the somewhat awkward position of the sole protector of someone who is more fragile than an ancient vase teetering on the edge of a wobbly desk. Here are a few standout examples of escorting gone wrong from other games I’ve played:

In BioShock, towards the end of the story, you have to escort a Little Sister somewhere. Not a problem, you think, given that these ADAM-wielding tiny girls are invincible at every other point in the game where you’ve encountered them. Except no–this Little Sister is special and can take damage from enemies. Strangely, she pays little attention to the chaos of bullets, lightning bolts, and Splicers around her, content in just walking around and stabbing corpses with her needle.

Musashi: Samurai Legend made you feel the weight of the escort mission. No, really. Every time you saved a Mystic–a kidnapped maiden who would, upon saving, help strengthen Musashi’s legendary sword–you had to literally carry her to the level’s exit. And still fight off bad guys. Sometimes you could use her as a weapon to push goons back, but it was often easier to dump her on the ground, clear the area, and then pick her back up again. Rinse and repeat a few more times. Yeah, way too unnecessary.

Now, I’ve only played Dead Rising 2: Case Zero and Dead Rising 2 across the whole franchise, but both of those games have survivors to rescue and bring back safely to your headquarters. Some of them are on a time limit, which is not a big deal, given that everything in these games is timed. However, these trapped bags of fresh flesh feature some of the worst artificial intelligence I’ve come across, and if you don’t babysit every single step they take they’ll most likely run themselves right into the middle of a horde and get themselves eaten to death. Similar to Mushashi: Samurai Legend, you can pick them up and carry them, but that leaves you with few options for clearing a walkable path. I think I ended up rescuing only 12 in Dead Rising 2 in the end. Not surprisingly, these problems also pop up in Dead Island.

G-Police is a game I don’t think I’ve ever gotten to write about yet on Grinding Down, but it is overdue for a GAMES I REGRET PARTING WITH feature soon enough. Let’s just say that piloting a slow-moving aircraft while protecting a slow-moving car on the ground as it obliviously drives to its destination while people shoot guns at it is not my favorite part of Psygnosis’ Blade Runner-inspired shooter.

Fable III, besides being a bad game, had a bunch of fetch quests in the form of escort missions. Basically, you’d be wooing someone, and they’d then want you to take them to a particular part of the world. Thankfully, once accepting to do this, you can fast travel to wherever is closest to this spot, and the person will also travel with you. However, you must now actually take their hand into yours and lead them down the path; when enemies show up, you must ensure that they don’t get hurt. It’s not terribly difficult, but it is terribly cumbersome, and the hand holding aspect is so glitchy that you’ll often break contact just going over a small bump.

Lastly, there’s a tiny section in VVVVVV wherein you have to escort a fellow comrade back to the teleporter. He’ll follow you when you walk on the ground, but comes to a halt when you flip up to the ceiling. This forces you to figure out how to move him along the path, without killing either of you. It’s a brief, but difficult–and extremely memorable–moment in a game all about moving swiftly from one platform to another.

Well, this post got long fast.

Do you like escort missions, and, if so, are you clinically insane? Tell me about your least favorite escorting scenario in the comments section below.


games I regret brave fencer musashi

In Brave Fencer Musashi, you could purchase action figures from a local store. They came in actual plastic packaging, and you could either leave them in the packaging or take them out and “play” with them, which basically resulted in watching them animate some stilted way. There were special action figures earned for rescuing all 35 palace members, opening every chest, or beating the game at a certain level, but there really wasn’t a point to the action figures. Just things to collect, look at, and store in your collection, boxed or unboxed. Something I clearly should have done with my copy of this game–keep it. Also, if I remember correctly, my copy came with a playable demo of Final Fantasy VII.

The story in Brave Fencer Musashi follows a young, cocky swordsman named Musashi who is summmoned to a parallel world to defend Allucaneet Kingdom from the Thirstquencher Empire and rescue Princess Fillet. His journey is primarily focused on obtaining the Five Scrolls, which enhance the powers hidden within his sword Lumina, as well as interacting with people from Allucanet and a nearby village. It’s a light-hearted coming-of-age tale brimming with puns, most based around food, and so I loved it as a wee one and miss it dearly as an adult regretting all the games he traded in. I mean, really, name me two other videogames rocking this many food-based puns, and I’ll give you the world.

It’s an action RPG, with combat happening in real time. The in-game world also plays about in real time, too, with a day/night cycle in place, which affects the time when stores in the village are open for business. In combat, Musashi has the ability to steal the special attacks from enemies and use them as his own, which is a fun rabbit hole to go down in that I remember going around to every enemy I could find, just to see how he’d use their powers. Naturally, some are better than others. Without those special moves, you are just using simple combos with your sword and the occasional special sword after gaining some of the Five Scrolls. It’s not a terribly difficult game, though I do recall some of the boss fights frustrating to the point of controller-shaking.

For some reason, I remember the village the most. I was so used to stores in my RPGs just always being open, ready to sell me stuff and buy my junk. Not quite so simple in the Allucaneet Kingdom, as the stores are operated by men and women, and they all live lives. They sleep and go for walks and open shop at specific hours, which one will quickly need to learn to stay alive. Such as the Breadshop/Bakery, open from 7 am to 7 pm and closed on Thursday. Or that the Toy Shop is open from 12 pm to 8 pm and closed on Wednesdays. It really felt like, to me, a real, operating village instead of something static and the same every time you visited like in Wild ARMs or Suikoden. As a kid that only barely understood schedules from school, this aspect blew my mind.

Recently, at Tampa Bay Comic Con, a man was selling a bunch of old videogames, and I saw Brave Fencer Musashi on his table for about $40, sitting next to a high-priced copy of Suikoden II. I looked on with a smile, but only that–I couldn’t do the deed. Maybe one day it’ll come to PSN as a digital download, but $40 is probably a bit too steep for me. Until then, I guess. Oh, and don’t bother with Musashi: Samurai Legend; it’s not the follow-up you are looking for.

GAMES I REGRET PARTING WITH is a regular feature here at Grinding Down where I reminisce about videogames I either sold or traded in when I was young and dumb. To read up on other games I parted with, follow the tag.