SINoALICE is finally out and I’m excited to dig into that. For now though, let’s go visit Opera Omnia in my continuing gacha game journey in the fifth chapter, the Palace of Malitia.
We open with the goddess Materia pondering what Kefka’s deal is. She fully expects him to cause trouble because he’s a chaos clown, but she’s puzzled because he can easily do more than sending jobbers to fight our heroes. For now, Mog can only stand by the good guys and observe for her.
As usual, the group lands far away from where they’re supposed to be because it’s too dangerous. Bartz is happy to walk there and Zidane calls him out for being scared of riding on airships. Then Yuffie says that she doesn’t like them either and Zidane goes “haha you’re so right queen, walking is fine.”
After defeating a Marlboro, the gang finds Firion Final Fantasy II closing a small Torsion. As it happens, he’s working on behalf of the Returners, a loose group of heroes trying to close Torsions independently of Mog’s group. Terra believes that it’s probably her Returners, so Firion joins up to further their common goal and to reunite her with her friends.
The gang passes through some mountains. Yang reminisces to Cecil how they met while Yuna ruminates on her journeys as a summoner. Onion Knight, though still part of the group, is still pretty suspicious of Mog. Rem Type-0 and Vaan and Penelo also have a talk but I know about their games the least, so it kinda means nothing to me.
Anyway, speaking of Yuna, she manages to find Seymour, her fellow summomer, wandering around. However, these characters were pulled from before Seymour went mask off about being evil, so they’re fairly cordial with each other. As he takes his leave, Onion Knight – who’s also still insisting that Mog’s fishy – can tell that something’s up with him.
Seymour is at the titular palace and he comes across Shadow FF VI. Shadow for some reason can immediately tell that Seymour is actually a ghost, but he cares more about money than whatever’s going on. Seymour pays him money to tell him what he knows about their current situation, but whatever it is that Shadow tells him is vague, leaving who is essentially the main villain of FF X begging. Owned.
They also meet Laguna, who’s kinda just drifting around the mountains. He is really perplexed by the group, and honestly, surprised that he’s the first considering the amalgamation of weirdos in it. After taking a nice walk, he decides that it’d be nice to join the “costume party.” Also, I guess I forgot that there aren’t any proper Moogles in FFVIII, because he looks at Mog and pretty much goes “what the fuck.”
Zidane and Vivi also manage to find Steiner, who gets lost pretty much immediately. Now, seeing Steiner show up answers a question I’ve had since I started playing: does getting a character through the gacha mean they don’t show up in the story? As it turns out, getting a character through the gacha just means unlocking them early, I guess. Anyway, he sees that Bartz and Zidane are kindred spirits and he hates it.
The number of Manikin encounters have been rapidly increasing, so the gang’s wondering what’s up with that. Mog finally tells the gang about Spiritus, the rival god terrorizing Opera Omnia’s world, and while he gleefully rules over the replicas, he also has the power to control the real deals directly. Hope, thinking about the Fal’Cie stuff, hates the sound of that and Terra’s reasonably terrified of Spiritus recruiting Kefka to his side.
Eventually, the gang runs into Shadow, who warns them of Seymour’s dark nature. He had also been hired to save Terra from being controlled by Kefka (with this part making clear that this is just another mindjacking instead of being Terra from the beginning of the game), but seeing that she’s fine, he decides to ditch to continue pursuing more work. The whole time, Yuffie is talking about how cool the guy is as a fellow ninja in arms as if Edge isn’t already here. Or did I unlock him when I accidentally did the first chapter of Act 2? Can’t remember.
Eventually, the gang themselves manage to find Seymour. He’s kinda manic, accusing the gods of the Opera Omnia world of toying with everyone and accusing Mog to be sus. That said, he’s still alright with trying to kill the heroes. He summons some Manikins to fight, but Shadow shows up to help out, deciding that the goals of his client and Mog’s aren’t mutually exclusive.
Everyone goes on to fight Seymour and… it’s a sincerely hard fight? My man’s got dual attacks, Dispelga, and the ability to summon groupies. His boss theme is playing the whole time too, so this actually rules.
After beating him down, Yuna attempts to send Seymour (it’s an FF X thing), but he is suddenly pulled into a portal. Shadow, now on board with the team, speculates that he didn’t escape but was rather rescued by whoever deployed him into the world. Hm. Anyway, with him out of the way, the gang finally clears the Torsion at the center of the Palace of Malitia. Go team.
The next chapter, the Domina Wastelands, looks to be the last chapter of Act I, so hey! We’re making progress!