When we last let off Cloud had just joined Avalanche proper and Tifa joined them on their next bombing mission. Looks like terrorism at its finest.
After writing so highly of the training system last week, I skipped over it entirely and moved on. Again, another benefit of classic game design: not being forced through a training mission.
Once again, we’re off to bomb yet another of the Mako reactors. It’s a good thing that Shinra is painted as this horrible big business company as I’d be concerned with blowing up the equivalent of a nuclear reactor in the middle of a densely populated city. Oh well, a few hundred lives for the good of the planet is a small cost, right?
I guess it’s logical enough to have this section be a repeat of the previous one. After jumping off the train and running through the tunnels, Cloud and gang find themselves back in the same a new Mako reactor. (Are the trains just covered in gore after each day? With the amount of creatures hanging out in these tunnels I’d imagine this would be maintenance headache.)
Another flashback sequence and another bomb set. Since there was no timer this time, I wasn’t entirely sure if I had actually placed the bomb this time. (The lack of a clear objective display hurts. I know the game opens up a bit after this but it’s no Skyrim, and remembering what was going on just after taking a break can be difficult.)
PLOT INTRIGUE. Fat, white, evil dude runs big electrical/paramilitary company that is draining the planet and blah blah blah whatever. I’m finding myself starting to glaze over the text dumps. Thankfully Shinra’s president seems bored of the exposition too and drops a giant robot on our heroes.
This fight is the first time I’ve noticed that there’s a positioning mechanic. It’s an interesting boss fight for that, but also a difficult one as I was dumb and decided to not waste potions on healing my team assuming that on level up they’d regen back to full. (Certainly not a good assumption to make and I should have noticed that sooner.) Whoops. Guess that gives good context for why cloud was too weak to pull himself back up once the bridge collapsed. That or he was a tad overdosed on the ten or so potions Barret threw at him during the fight.
I don’t even really know how to describe this entire scene. We’re reintroduced to Aeris again, who convinently was tending to a group of flowers that happened to cushion Cloud’s thirty foot drop. There’s the start of a relationship between the two, a dude walks in and watches for a for a few minutes, then a hilariously uncoordinated chase ensues through the backroom of the church. Cloud attempts to push barrels down while yelling at Aeris to run, with no effectiveness (I couldn’t push one of the barrels, and even the one that did fall seemingly phased through another of the soldiers.)
After taking Aeris home I reached the end of the hour play session. There seems to be something that Cloud (and perhaps Tifa and Aeris) know that the player doesn’t yet, or perhaps I’ve missed some of the story. It’s becoming clear to me that there’s still quite a bit more left to go until I get to the world map proper; hopefully it’s only an hour or so away, as the plot is starting to loose me.