A full text walkthrough for the Terrain of Magical Expertise RPG! Because why DON’T we have one of these already?!
Table of Contents
Setting the Stage
The year is 2020. COVID-19 is running rampant, and without a vaccine, the best way to slow it down is for people to minimize contact with others. Most folks around the world are stuck in their homes, only leaving their property when absolutely necessary. Human activity the world over has decreased noticeably and the consequences of this will be… surprisingly positive, actually. When was the last time you saw a photograph of San Francisco that wasn’t enveloped in a thin veil of smog? With the world in such a slowed down and otherwise dire state, many begin to turn to fictional worlds that exist on the internet.
Perhaps the most popular of these is the Terrain of Magical Expertise. Here, players are given an incredible range of customization for their avatar’s appearance and combat abilities, and this strange world is vast, mysterious, and enchanting. Grand adventures and heart-pounding competition await all who arrive!
But sinister forces are at work in this game. And you, a White Hat hacker, have been hired to stop them. Choose your combat style carefully, and be ready for anything, ESPECIALLY if it breaks the rules of the game…
Welcome to TOME.
Gameplay and Controls
The Terrain of Magical Expertise, or TOME, is a role-playing game. You take on the role of a mysterious white hat hacker who has been hired to fight against the despicable actions of black hat hackers who are plaguing the popular in-universe online game of TOME. If you’re wondering what the difference is between a white hat hacker and a black hat… well, you ever watch Star Wars? Think of hacking as being able to use the Force. White hats are like the Jedi, black hats are like Sith. While a white hat does what they do to promote order and protect the vulnerable, black hats hack and manipulate systems for power, money, or fun.
Unlike most traditional RPGs, there is no experience or leveling system in TOME. Instead, improvements depend entirely on the equipment you use, the techniques you learn, and your own skill at playing the game. Practice and patience will be your best friends in this game!
The game can be played with a keyboard or with a gamepad. Use the arrow keys, D-Pad, or joystick to move your character on the map and the selection cursor in menus and combat. Use the WASD keys and gamepad front-face buttons to choose your actions during combat. Use Z/Enter to confirm selections, X/Escape to cancel or go back, and C to bring up the menu when you’re not in combat, or use the appropriate buttons on your gamepad.
There are two primary aspects of gameplay: Overworld exploration, and combat. The various maps you explore in the overworld are presented in isometric fashion, but if you’re like me, you’ll be happy to know that the controls for the game aren’t also turned at an angle. Up is still UP, not up and to the left or to the right. Moving diagonally means pressing two direction keys at once (or moving the control stick in that direction if your’e on a gamepad).
Whilst in the overworld, you can interact with objects and NPCs (non-player characters) by using the Z or Enter keys on your keyboard. Z/Enter also allows you to confirm selections. The X key lets you cancel selections and exit menus. The C key brings up your player menu, where you can use items, view your Power-Ups, change game options, or even return to the title screen. For gamepads, use the face buttons to confirm or cancel selections, and the Start button (“+” on Nintendo Switch controllers) to bring up the player menu. Keep in mind that this won’t pause the rest of the game, so you could still get dragged into battle by a wandering monster!
Combat in TOME is turn-based, and uses the WASD and arrow keys. The game itself provides a much better tutorial than I could here, but I’ll give it my best shot.
Whenever it’s one of your characters’ turns, you’ll have four options to choose from: Strike, Items, Magic, and Strategize. To use them, press the appropriate key or gamepad button. You only have 30 seconds to make a decision, though!
The D key is used for your basic physical attack. Hit the key, use the arrow keys to select your target, then hit the D key again to execute the attack. Your character will move to the space directly in front of the target and strike! Further, if you press the D key just before you hit the enemy, you can turn your attack into a multi-strike combo.
The W key opens your Items menu. Use the arrow keys to select an item, then press W again to confirm your selection. If the item only affects a single character or enemy use the arrow keys to select the target, then press the W key one more time to use the item.
The A key accesses your magical abilities. Use the arrow keys to choose your technique, hit A to confirm, and if you need to choose a target, arrows to select and A to execute. Make sure you read the instructions for each technique carefully! Making full use of any magical attack will require specific button presses, and sometimes proper timing as well.
Finally, the S key opens your Strategize menu. For most playable characters, you’ll only have three options: Defend, Scan, and Flee. As always, use the arrow keys to select and the S key to confirm. Hitting Defend puts that character into defensive position for one full turn, which reduces all incoming damage until it’s that character’s turn again. The Flee option is exactly what it sounds like: Your party attempts to flee the battle. It won’t always work, though, and personally, I just try to win every battle I get into anyway (more money that way). The third option is the most useful one in my opinion: Scan. This lets you take a look at your enemies’ elemental alignments. their stats, and even any immunities to status ailments. The best part is, it doesn’t take up your turn! If you’re quick, you can quickly come up with a plan for dealing with your opponents using this info and still do something with that same character that turn!
As always, the face buttons equate to the WASD keys. The top face button is W, left is A, bottom is S, and right is D.
There is a FOURTH option in the Strategize menu that is only available to the White Hat Hacker, and that is the Hack ability. There are only three options at the start of the game, but you’ll gain more as the story progresses. Debug is the one you’ll use the most throughout the entire game because you’ll be fighting against several black hat hackers who have no qualms about cheating. For example, the first group of hackers you face, the Trouble Makers, have scripts they can use that make them untargetable in combat or can force opponents into defensive position permanently. Use the Debug option to put an end to their shenanigans!
If you use any other hacking abilities, though, it can cause damage to the integrity of the in-universe game’s code, reducing it by 50%. I don’t know what happens if code integrity reaches zero, but I bet it’s bad. Use the Debug feature to restore 25% of code integrity.
Combat Tips and Tricks
Combat in TOME follows the “Rock-Paper-Scissors” trend of elemental strengths and weaknesses. There are five elemental affinities in the game: Crystal, Infernal, Natural, Technical, and Neutral As Kirbopher explains in the game, this is just a fancy way of saying “Ice, Fire, Wood, and Electricity”. Each of these elements is strong against one and weak against another, and each element also has a unique status ailment associated with it. Neutral is the only affiliation which has no strengths or weaknesses. As for the others, Crystal beats Infernal, Infernal beats Natural, Natural beats Technical, and Technical beats Crystal.
There are four status ailments in the game, each one associated with one of the four elements. “Encased” freezes the target, making them unable to move during that time, but the ice can be broken with a strike. (I don’t think you can attack your own teammates, so no luck breaking it yourself without an item.) “Cursed” damages the target at the end of each of their turns, though it’s a relatively small amount, making this ailment the most tolerable of them all. “Flower” turns the target into a flower that can only Strike, Scan, or Defend. You also cannot use multi-strike combos while you’re a flower. Finally, “Paralyzed” lowers the targets speed and defensive power, and also has a chance skip the target’s turn. I personally find “Flower” to be the most useful of all these when it comes to dealing with troublesome opponents. It doesn’t discourage you from attacking them like Encased does, and reduces their offensive power to a single Strike.
All status ailments last for three of the affected character’s turns, and they all go away at the end of the battle.
You can defend while you’re being attacked. Before an attack hits, press the S key or the bottom face button on the gamepad to temporarily place that character on the defensive. It won’t work against every attack, though, and multi-strike combos can still get some full-power hits in, even if you time it correctly. Still, this is something you should absolutely master.
When executing physical attacks, pressing the Strike key just before the attack hits the enemy will let you execute a second attack. Brawler class fighters, however, can execute up to SIX strikes in a single attack! Start pressing the Strike key rapidly before the first hit lands!
Your MP, or magic points, are collectively shared by your entire party, so you have to manage it wisely. There are two ways to recover MP during battle: Items, and physical attacks. For every strike you execute, you regain 1 MP. This is why I find Brawlers to be the most useful of the three classes. They can recover up to 6 MP for the party with multi-strike combos!
There are a lot of interesting combat mechanics you’ll encounter as you venture through TOME. One is the Trap. There are various kinds of traps. The most annoying one in my opinion is Dirt Knap. The user sets a trap on the space in front of them, and anyone or anything who steps on that space has their attack canceled and they are afflicted with the Flower ailment. Not all traps will cancel incoming attacks, but the most annoying ones do.
There are also various kinds of barriers. Some simply prevent damage for a single hit before breaking. Others might reflect projectiles back at their origin.
You should watch out for anyone and anything that uses portals. If a portal is placed in front of an enemy, use close-range attacks. If it’s placed on the ground in front of them, use long range attacks. You’ll end up taking damage if you don’t follow this advice.
One last thing: When fighting against hackers, make good use of your own hacking abilities! As I said, Debug is your best friend for these fights. Don’t feel bad about using any of your other hacks against these cheaters either. For example, the Input_Lag hack will prevent the target from hitting you with multi-strike combos. These hackers are cheaters and need to be stopped, so do whatever you have to in order to win against them.
Actually, one more thing, and this is probably the most important one: There is NO WAY to pause the game during combat! The game will proceed with or without you, so make sure you don’t have anything else to do in real life before picking fights!
Introduction: Creating Your Character
When the game begins, you’ll be greeted with brief cutscene, followed by a computer screen. Read the emails and reply to “Yuno Hu”, then get ready to build a character! Unfortunately, it’s not as exciting as it sounds.
Your first option is going to be to select your race. You can choose humanoid, animalistic, cybernetic, or morphological. The thing is, this has ZERO impact on gameplay itself, so pick whichever one you like best! Unfortunately, this is going to be all you can do with regards to customizing your character’s appearance. It sucks, I know, but that’s the way it is.
Your next choice will be your combat class. You have three options: Brawler, Spellcaster, and Weaponary. Each one focuses on specific statistics, and your choice will also affect what moves you can learn.
Brawler: Gains a Speed stat bonus, can execute up to six strikes when using physical attacks (rapidly press the Attack button!), and your first offensive magic technique will be an attack-all style attack. Remember that Brawlers can also execute up to six Strikes in a single turn if you time your button presses correctly, and while these strikes are pretty weak in terms of damage, the true power of the Brawler is their ability to quickly recover MP for the party.
Weaponary: Weaponaries focus on direct physical combat and gain a bonus in their physical Attack and Defense stats. Your first magical attack will be a single-target strike. Weaponaries prefer to deal as much damage as possible to wipe out enemies quickly.
Spellcaster: Spellcasters are kind of a mix between Brawlers and Weaponaries. They can still only execute up to 2 physical attacks, but their stat boost is in Magic Attack and Magic Defense, and your first magic attack will be an attack-all style technique. Spellcasters focus on using powerful magic to win combat.
I find myself using strategies that focus on magic, supported by physical attacks to regain MP. This might scream “Spellcaster” to most, but I personally recommend going Brawler. Once you get the hang of hitting your targets multiple times, you’ll find that regaining MP is a lot easier and you can use your magic abilities more often. However, this isn’t the only way to play the game, and I encourage you to find your own preferred style!
Following your Class will be your Elemental Alignment. You have five options to choose from: Crystal, Infernal, Natural, Technical, and Neutral. If you’ve ever played Pokemon, and I’d bet dollars to doughnuts that you have (I certainly have!), then you should know that these elements function in a similar manner. As Kirbopher will state in the game, these are just fancy names for Ice, Fire, Wood, and Electricity, and each of those four beats the next in the order listed. Crystal beats Infernal, Infernal beats Natural, Natural beats Technical, and Technical beats Crystal. So if your character is a Natural element, you’ll take extra damage from Infernal attacks, but less damage from Technical attacks, and you’ll take normal damage from Crystal, Natural, and Neutral attacks. Neutral has no advantage over any other element, but it also has no elemental weaknesses.
After you choose elemental alignment, you’ll be asked to choose two magical techniques. The first will have an elemental alignment as well, and will be an offensive move. If you chose Weaponary, your options will be single-target hits that can deal tremendous damage if executed correctly. If you chose Brawler or Spellcaster, your options will be attack-all techniques. In either case, the only real question is, what element do you want this attack to have?
Your final selection will be your support technique. No matter what your previous choices were, you’ll always have the same five options.
Total Relax: This heals all party members, and if you tap the Magic Button when the ring reaches the white area in the circle, it will also switch everyone to defensive position until their next turns! A very useful technique for those who like to outlast their opponents.
Life Light: Rapidly tap the Magic Button to fill the meter and increase its healing power. The downside to this technique is that you cannot use it on yourself, so it’s completely useless if it’s just your character in the party.
Magic Hat: Channel the spirit of a nameless Pharaoh to protect yourself from harm! (I’m also a Yu-Gi-Oh! nerd, shut up.) Press the Down arrow key at the right moment to nullify all damage to your character for a full turn (which means until it’s your character’s turn again).
Reflect Mirror: You’ll be tasked with pressing five keys in sequence in a limited amount of time. If you succeed, a magical mirror is created that will reflect a single projectile back to its user and doubling the damage it would have dealt to you! The mirror will disappear after one full turn, or if it does its job.
Trap Box: Press the Down key when the meter has filled to create a trap in the space in front of your character for a full turn. Any enemies who step on that space to attack you will be damaged instead!
After all of the important stuff is out of the way, just pick your character’s name (I went with “White-Hat”), and you’re good to go! If you’re wondering what my build is for this walkthrough, I chose Brawler, Natural, Clover Cutter, and Total Relax.
Now it’s time to enter the magical world of TOME!
First Login: The White Hat Hacker Hits the Scene!
The first area you arrive in will be a Balancenter within the Zen Hub, the central area of TOME. Four NPCs surround the entry point, though they don’t really have a lot of terribly useful information. One is supposed to tell the time, another tells you the date, yet another tells you which teleports lead to which areas, and the last one just names and describes the area you’re in. Talk to some of the other players if you like- it’s useful if you want some lore or to get early hints for upcoming objectives- and then head to the Telepillar with the green tiles around it. But as you do, someone calls out for you to wait for them…
Enter Alpha! He will be your first companion. As the two of your converse, you’ll have different chat options to select, but I don’t think they have too much of a bearing on the overall story. Sometimes your choices will have immediate consequences, such as whether or not you get to fight other players, but I’ll let you know as they come up. Anyway, you and Alpha will form a party and then be “ambushed” by his friend Kirbopher. I use quotation marks because, well… it’s not really much of an ambush if you’re screaming at the top of your lungs, is it?
Time for your first battle! There are no consequences for losing this battle, and no rewards for winning either, so feel free to skip this little bit of the walkthrough if you like. Kirbopher is aligned with the Technical element, so that makes him resistant to Crystal attacks, but weak to Natural attacks. He won’t deal a significant amount of damage to Alpha, but if your character is Crystal-aligned, Kirb’s magic attacks will HURT because of their Technical alignment. If you chose a Natural attack during character creation, use it to deal heavy damage to Kirbopher. If you chose the Crystal attack, don’t bother with it for this one. Whatever you chose, though, alternate between magical and physical attacks to keep your MP up while dropping Kirb’s HP. He’s not a terribly difficult fight even if you don’t know what you’re doing.
After the battle will be another conversation, Kirb will head to the next area. Follow him (you can stop at the sign with the bird creature Tsuntori perched atop it for a visual guide of the controls and a dumb pun based in Japanese) and go through the cutscene for some additional story. You’ll find Flamegirl speaking with one of the game’s mods about some troublesome players pulling weird stunts, but the mod is unable to really do anything without proof or reports from other guilds. The best he can offer is to keep an eye on these players. Following some more exposition, Flamegirl will take off to deal with another problem, and Kirb will offer to give you a brief tutorial of battling in TOME. You don’t have to take him up on it, but if this is your first time playing the game, I highly recommend going for it because it’s one more battle you can use to practice your button-pressing. Sounds silly and a bit sarcastic, but I’m actually being 100% serious here. After some practice, you’ll get the hang of turning physical attacks into multi-strike combos, and you’ll begin mastering your various magical techniques. You especially want to practice with Alpha’s “Orion Shield” technique. The easy part is filling the meter and getting those two strikes in. The HARD part is getting Alpha to catch the darn thing when it comes back so he can use the “Shield” part of the technique’s name. I haven’t quite gotten it myself, but it IS possible. After the tutorial, Kirb will take off to help Flamegirl and you and Alpha can go do some exploring of your own.
In the next area, you’ll find a little village with a healing station (it’s the big hot tub that Alpha points out), a save point, and a couple of NPCs. Talk to them if you like, but definitely hit the hot tub before moving on so you can warp back to it if you are defeated in battle. The enemies you’ll find here are called Foliroach. They’re Natural-aligned, so Alpha’s Vulcan Fist attack is super effective against them. Fight ’em and earn yourself some money (called Netti in this game) and maybe a few items if you like. They’re stupid-easy to beat. Just be careful as they can inflict the Flower ailment on you!
You’ll meet and fight a few other players along the way. Once you’re close enough, they immediately challenge you to a fight. Make sure to use your Scan ability to check their elemental alignments! Make a habit of checking the ailment immunities as well! You won’t have to worry about this right away, but trust me, you will soon enough. The first of these is a lone swordsman. He’s not really difficult to beat. Stick mostly to physical attacks and keep trying to master the Orion Shield. Once you beat him, open the treasure chest behind him for a Crimson Fruit and 5 Netti, then step onto the telepillar to warp to the next area.
You’ll be ambushed by two more players almost right away. One of them is Natural-aligned, so knock his block off with Alpha’s Vulcan Fist. The other guy is Neutral, but he’s also a Brawler so he can land multiple hits when he uses Strike. Focus on the Natural dude, and once he’s down switch to the other guy until he falls too.
There’s a new enemy here called a Ballug. They actually have a pretty funny weakness: If you block when they curl up and try to bowl you over, they’ll bounce off of you and land on their backs, and they’ll have to use their next turn to right themselves.
Eventually you’ll encounter a kid who walks across your path… from out of bounds. When asked about this, he panics and runs off. Give chase into the next area! There will be a fork in the path, so head down to find a treasure chest. You’ll eventually encounter the archer kid again, along with one of his two companions. Once the lovably over-the-top Nylocke appears, they’ll run away again. When Nylocke leaves, follow the path left, up, and around to find a chest with 10 Netti in it. The new enemy here is the Sixteenbeet. The most annoying thing about these guys is how fast and unpredictable their movements are on the overworld, but they’re pretty weak otherwise. Head back and follow the path Nylocke took and fight the next set of players. One is Crystal-aligned, and the other is Natural. Be careful of the latter’s Counter Cut! If you try to attack him at close range, he’ll damage you instead!
Two more players await you in the next area, an Infernal and a Technical. They’ll mess with your stats, and the Infernal can curse you, so be on guard! After you beat them, look for a treasure chest hidden behind a large mushroom as it contains two Heavenly Chimes! Fight another player, hit the hot tub in the village, grab the three treasure chests, and save your game. Head to the next area, nab another chest, and confront the Trouble Makers!
Meet the Trouble Makers: Rockoon, Archy, and Skeight. They’re no ordinary players as they have hacked their Strategize menu to be able to execute scripts that let them cheat in the game. They can make themselves untargetable, or they can paralyze Alpha. Use the Debug function to deal with these shenanigans.
Thing is, the REAL victory condition for this battle is to counter their hacking. Use the Debug command each time they try hacking the game. Whenever you use Debug, you’ll have to play a minigame stylized after old arcade games like Pong, Frogger, or Space Invaders. Succeed three times and Rockoon will try to hack YOU… and fail. The Trouble Makers then flee from the battle!
After the battle, Kirb and his guildmates will arrive to confront the Trouble Makers again, but they log out before anything can really be done about them. After this, Flamegirl will invite you and Alpha to join her guild, the Dandy Alliance. Congratulations on completing your first romp through TOME! But don’t let your guard down. From here on out, the battle is on!
Old Friends, Bitter Rivals
A new day, a new adventure! The hacker checks their email, but bear in mind that replying to one will cause the game to send you into TOME, so hold off on that if you want to read all three emails. When you’re done, reply to Alpha’s email to log in to TOME. Talk to the other players in the Zen Hub (there’s always something interesting or useful to glean from them), then use the Edodes Woods telepillar to meet up with Alpha and Kirb. After a brief conversation, both of them will join your party.
Follow the path, open the treasure chest for a two Crimson Fruits (basic healing item), and hit the hot tub so you can warp back to it in case you lose a battle. Save your game too! There’s another chest with two Mana Twinkles in it (basic MP restoration). In the next area, you’ll fight a couple of players and Kirb will continue giving tutorials. The animalistic player is Crystal-aligned, so use Kirb’s Technical attacks to take him down quick. The other is Neutral, but she has a Natural-based attack that can deal significant damage to Kirb, and which hits all opponents.
After the battle, take the leftmost path to a small village. There are two treasure chests here, and one is partially hidden behind a house. Behind the OTHER house, however, is a mysterious cube item. Grab it, then head back and take the other path to the next area.
In the next area, take the upper path to a treasure chest, then follow the lower path around to another pair of players. In this battle Kirb will teach you about status ailments. The Infernal player can Curse you, which deals damage to the affected character at the end of each of their turns, for the next three turns. The Natural player will hit your character with the Flower ailment. All you can do is single-hit Strikes, Defend, and Scan for the next three turns. Focus on the Natural player and use Alpha’s Vulcan Fist against her, then take out the Infernal player.
When you reach another fork in the road, follow it to the right to find a treasure chest. Go back and go left to fight two more players. These guys are Crystal and Technical aligned, and this battle will teach you about the Paralyze and Encase ailments. Paralysis lowers your speed and defense, and has a chance to skip that character’s turn. Encase just outright skips the affected player’s next three turns, but they can be broken out of the ice if an enemy hits them with a close-range attack. Like with Cursed and Flower, these ailments last three of the affected character’s turns.
Use Kirb’s Technical attacks against the Lovecraftian player to take them out quicker. If you have a Natural attack, use it against the guy in the purple armor. After the battle, nab the chest for another Heavenly Chime, then head to the next area for a bit more dialogue, then hit the last telepillar to go to the Edodes Woods hub area to meet up with Flamegirl and Nylocke.
Flamegirl will give you the rundown of the first regional event of the Campaign of Champions, as well as why the guild has been having so much trouble. Nylocke will volunteer for a solo mission, so Flamegirl will join your party and take you to Jacksonii Jungle.
Once you arrive, Flamegirl will give you four Power-Ups and you’ll be given the opportunity to learn how to use them. I suggest taking the tutorial, but for a quick rundown here: Power-ups are color-coded, and often give stat boosts. Green numbers indicate an increase in that stat, while red numbers indicate a decrease. All characters also have two utility slots that hold the purple Power-Ups. You’ll find some that give you immunities to status ailments, others which decrease the cost of your magic, and all kinds of others. Hit up the Equipment Stall and give your new Power-Ups to yourself and Alpha, then head to the left to grab a treasure chest and use the save point. Finally, head back left and down to go to the next area.
Hit the healing station and then go on. You’ll find some treasure chests here, as well as some ant-like enemies that are Infernal-aligned. They’ll try to drag you into battle by jumping at you, but they always jump at where you ARE, so just move out of the way to dodge ’em if you don’t feel like fighting them. Be sure to check both branches of the path to get the treasure chests before fighting the next set of players. The running fox is Natural-aligned, and the creepy one is Crystal. Use Alpha and Flamegirl to take out the runner and have Kirb go after the other one. There’s a treasure chest beyond these players with a Power-Up inside.
Don’t hit the Telepillar just yet, though! There’s a stone path beyond it that leads to another treasure chest with another Power-Up inside. Grab it, then head back to the telepillar.
In the next area you’ll be introduced to Pawneeko the traveling merchant. Stop by and pick up some items if you like, then head down to the ruins-like area. Explore it and grab all the treasure chests you can. There are two sets of players to fight here. The first is a team of all Natural-aligned players, so have Flamegirl and Alpha deal out the brunt of the damage. Take out the cactus dude first because he can inflict Paralyze. The cloudy boy should be next because not all of his attacks are Natural, and he can deal some heavy damage. Keep an eye on Kirb, though. Since he’s a Technical element, these guys can deal some big damage to him.
The next set of players has one Neutral, one Crystal, and one Natural. Have Flamegirl and Alpha take out the tornado-ape (Natural) while you and Kirb try to get rid of the big bug (Crystal). Be careful, though! He can enshroud himself in a mist that freezes any character that tries to attack him at close range! The ghost cat can also turn herself invisible, making her immune to damage for several turns.
The next area has a treasure chest, a healing station, an Equipment Stall, a cutscene, and another set of players to fight. Take out the Neutral character first because she can heal her party members for around 15 points. Help Kirb take out the Crystal character as well since he can Encase your party members. Leave the little guy for last. Go back to the healing station, then grab two more treasure chests before moving on.
This next area is a tricky one because there are some enemies that are disguised as environmental elements. The ones that will attack you have black outlines. Steer clear of them if you don’t want to fight them. There’s a treasure chest in the top-most corner of the main area. Grab it then maneuver your way to the next telepillar.
The next area consists of several ruins and contains two treasure chests (one is partially hidden from view behind that first archway), a friendly NPC, a healing station, and an Equipment Stall. The area after this one has a save point. USE IT. There’s an extremely tough battle coming up, so you may also want to grind for some Netti and go back to see Pawneeko as well.
When you reach the end of the area, your party will be blocked from claiming a relic by the Cast ‘O Dreams. Who then proceed to pick a fight with the Dandy Alliance.
Not only is this the boss fight of the chapter, but you’ll also be learning about Team Attacks. Hope you have plenty of Heavenly Chimes handy because you’ll need them! SaturnDiva can team up with SnowWhyti to deal a devastating Crystal-based attack that hits everyone and can instantly knock out Flamegirl. Asterologist and Sniperyda can also team up for a Crystal-based lance attack against a single player. Team Attacks take up both players turns, which is supposed to be the offset to their power level.
Diva is a Technical element, Snow is Crystal, and Sniperyda and Asterologist are both Neutral. Take out Snow first to prevent any further team-ups with Diva, then focus on Sniperyda. Both Diva and Aster can put up barriers that reflect projectiles, so watch yourself. Diva should be your third target. It’s a hard fight, but you can win!
This battle signals the end of the chapter.
Tales of the Terrain: The Mystery of Luteus Labyrinth
You’ll be teaming up with Nylocke in this chapter. He’s a Crystal-aligned Weaponary. One of his magical attacks strikes at all opponents at once, while the other can potentially deal heavy damage to a single opponent and has a chance at freezing the target. He’s especially helpful to have around if you’re fighting Infernal opponents.
When the chapter begins, the hacker goes to a website called D-Buggers, where other hackers congregate and talk. The message they read is from someone who has figured out a few tricks of their own, but then got hit by some particularly nasty hacks. After that, the White Hat checks their email.
Before embarking on your next mission, Nye will give you a tour of the town and show you the important stuff. You won’t be able to access the arena just yet, but you should definitely go to the Training Dojo to acquire a new technique. The Dojo Master will let you try out all of his techniques beforehand, so practice with each one before choosing the one you like most. I recommend getting either Bomb Rush or Twisty Top. The former lets you throw up to eight bombs at random opponents, while the former can inflict up to seven hits against a single opponent. Once you’ve made up your mind, fight the Dojo Master, win, and learn your new trick. When you’re done here, pay the shop a visit to top off your supplies, then use the Equipment Stall to rearrange your gear, and finally head to the telepillar in the middle of town to embark on an epic quest with NNNYLOCKE! DRAGON OF THE COLD STEEL!
Nylocke will offer to tell you the history of TOME. Well, the in-game history, anyway. It’s actually quite entertaining, and somewhat informative, at least when it comes to explaining the lore of the game and its mechanics. After this, follow the path to the next telepillar and grab the chest before warping to the next area. Here, follow the path to another chest and then to a trio of Infernal players. Nylocke and your new ability should make short work of them. I recommend taking out Doctoragon first because of his healing capabilities.
After beating those Infernal players, navigate through the giant lilies carefully because two of them are actually monsters in disguise. Remember, look for the black outline! Grab the treasure chest at the end and warp to the next area.
The NPC at the start of the next area will give you a hint about how to discover the secret of this area. If you’re having trouble, here’s another hint: Ramps you can go up on will have tufts of grass at the bottom. If you don’t see that, then you aren’t actually at the bottom of the ramp. Anyway, continue ahead and fight two more Infernal players, then go up the right-most ramp and navigate around these giant lilies, taking care to avoid the disguised monsters, as a chest with a Power-Up inside awaits you at the end. Head back and grab the other treasure chest hidden behind the lily in the left corner, then go to the other ramp.
See those three treasure chests? Now see how that ramp doesn’t have any grass at the bottom? Yeah, that’s what I was talking about earlier. There’s a way to get to those chests, but it’s on the other side of the area, so follow the path until you’re ambushed by a disguised enemy. There’s no way to avoid it, unfortunately, but it’s not a difficult fight. Head down the next ramp to a hidden area that leads to the three treasure chests you saw earlier. Loot ’em, then head back. Go all the way down the yellow path for another chest, then continue onward to a pair of Neutral-aligned players. Take ’em out and move ahead.
Use the healing station here, then hit the Equipment Stall to see if you’d like to make any changes to your or Noe’s gear (you should equip that Bronze Pendant for a little extra Netti after each battle), then save your game. Navigate around some more stink flowers (and fakes!) to find a couple of NPCs and Pawneeko the traveling merchant. Buy some items if you like, then go get ambushed by a couple of players. Kaptainman is a Crystal element, while Fulgurren is Technical. If you have an advantage, make use of it to take one out quickly. In either case, just focus on one, then take out the other. There’s a treasure chest hidden behind a cluster of mushrooms after these guys, so nab it and then warp to the next area.
In the next area, however, will be a boss battle of sorts.You and Nylocke will be challenged by the Infernal Demonking! He’s a tough one too. I think you can avoid the fight… but where’s the fun in that? Hit him with your new technique (unless you chose the Natural attack) and Nylocke’s Stalagmite Stab technique. Demonking is immune to Encase, so you’ll just have to focus on dealing damage. Be sure to replenish your MP whenever you can to keep up the pressure, but don’t forget to heal yourself as well! Demonking has a whopping 200 HP, so he’ll take a while to beat, but he CAN be beaten!
If you lose, Demonking will revive you both. But if you win, he’ll tell you the secret of Luteus Labyrinth. Before you do anything, though, it would be wise to return to the previous area and use the healing station. After that, head to the
Lost Woods labyrinth and heed Demonking’s instructions for taking the secret path. (In case you get lost, just follow the footprints on the ground.) If you do, you’ll meet T-Bones and Grounda, a pair of dino-themed players. Use your dialogue options to pick a fight with them, because victory will net you some new Power-Ups!
Grounda is Infernal-aligned, so she’ll be easiest to beat first. You absolutely want to take one or the other out as quickly as possible because the two of them have a deadly Team Attack. Focus on Grounda using Nylocke’s Stalagmite Stab and your own non-Natural attacks. Once she’s down, you can work on T-Bones. Once the battle is over, check behind one of the farthest treasure boxes for another mysterious cube, then head back out. You’ll be taken back to the start of the maze Reenter, and this time follow the forest sprite. If you get caught in battle, don’t worry because the sprite will reappear once the battle is over.
At the end of the sprite’s path, you’ll find a friendly NPC, a save point, and an Equipment Stall. Take advantage of the stall and the save, then proceed to the final area of the maze where you’ll find… Trouble.
You’ll be joined by a new character, Gamesoft, whom you briefly met when you first arrived at the start of the maze. She’s Neutral-aligned and has some powerful abilities. However, your opponents are the Trouble Makers, and Rockoon has a new trick up his sleeve: He’s taken advantage of a glitch in the game itself to fuse with the Shadowbeast mini-boss. No hacking required either. While he’s in this state of flux, you’ll be unable to damage him. You’ll have to Debug him, which will lock him into either the Shadowbeast or his own body. When you do, you’ll have to press the down-face key in time to lock him down.
However, don’t be intimidated by the Shadowbeast or Rockoon’s glitched-out fusion with it. Instead, focus on taking out Skeight because he has a type advantage over Nylocke. Make use of Gamesoft’s Reprogram ability to turn your enemies into Flowers, take out Skeight, and then focus on either Archy or Shadow/Rock. I recommend Archy because his Star Arrow attack deals a lot of damage, and seems to ignore defensive positions.
When the battle is over, Rockoon will put two and two together and figure out that you’re a White Hat hacker, which is how they lost. After they peace out, Gamesoft will also leave, but fortunately, this won’t be the last you see of her. Nye will receive a message from Flamegirl and the two of you will head back to Versicolor Village. It turns out Flamegirl found the last relic you guys need to enter the regional event! WOO! Save your game and come back for the next chapter!
Secrets of Edodes Woods – Enter the Slime Siblings!
Log in and head to Edodes Woods. You’ll meet up with the guild in Versicolor Village, where you’ll learn that Alpha, Kirb, and Flamegirl have all learned new techniques! Alpha can now use the Poseidon Wave, a Crystal-type attack that hits all enemies. Kirbopher now has Defibrillators, which can revive a fallen ally in combat. Flamegirl can now call up a Campfire which will heal your party for several turns. Flamegirl will take you to Chief Bitopio’s castle to register your guild for the event.
Once you’re in the castle’s courtyard, you’ll see a LOT of other players. A few you’ll recognize as players you’ve fought already, but there are also several that you’ll fight later on in the next area. Not really important now, but I thought it fun to mention. Flamegirl will get the Dandy Alliance registered, and then you’ll have the rest of the day to do pretty much whatever you want. You might notice Pawneeko rockin’ that yin-yang style in the corner. This one only sells two items, and both are really expensive: A Rainbow Cube (1000 Netti) and a Power-Up that makes its user immune to all status ailments (6000 Netti! WTF!). Probably not worth it to try to buy ’em, though.
If you didn’t learn a new technique from the Dojo in the last chapter, go do that NOW. Once again, I recommend getting either Bomb Rush or Twisty Top. There’s another Pawneeko in the village who sells Power-Ups. I recommend farming some cash at the arena, which I’ll cover in more detail in a moment.
Near the town’s save point is a player by the name of Completeboy. He’ll give you some hints as to the locations of several Rainbow Cubes hidden throughout Edodes Woods. If you’ve been following this guide, you’ll have already picked up two. Just in case, however, I’ll list the locations here.
- Fimicola Field -> Sector A: In the final section, near the last telepillar
- Repandum Riverside -> Sector Z: Behind a mushroom house
- Luteus Labyrinth -> Sector M: Behind a treasure chest at the end of the hidden path
- Jacksonii Jungle -> Sector K: In the final section, partially hidden behind some ruins
- Jacksonii Jungle -> Sector S: Lower floor, between some stone blocks
In the meantime, you might as well go through each area and grab any treasures you missed on your initial runs. You can also head to the Battle Arena to do battle against players you’ve fought against in the woods. You can go solo, or you can recruit other members of the guild to join you. Get a party and equipment setup you like going for you and then challenge Dangerous Species. They drop 26 Netti upon defeat, the most out of anyone you can fight at the arena. I recommend bringing Alpha, Kirbopher, and Flamegirl. Alpha and Flames can handle Sunwulong while you and Kirb take out Scorpiocite. None of the other fights are really worth the effort since Dangerous Species gives you the most moolah. Also, don’t worry about conserving MP. Everything refills automatically after the fight is over, so go ham on your enemies!
There are two sections that are worth mentioning that you haven’t explored yet: The first is Luteus Labyrinth, Sector R. This place is home to Muscaria Mansion, which is infested with enemies called Sumthindarq. It’s a pretty brutal side-quest, and not really worth attempting at this stage as the Sumthindarqs can deal a lot of damage even when blocked, and they tend to gang up on you, forcing you into back-to-back battles. Sure, you only ever fight one at a time, but at this point, that’s more than enough to get your face beaten in, even when defending properly. Best wait until your next free-roam day.
Buuuut, if you DO decide to take on the mansion, here are couple of things to know: First, while Sumthindarq itself is Neutral, all of its attacks are elemental. Problem is, WHICH attacks have which element is randomized from fight to fight, so be sure to guard against all of ’em! Second, Sumthindarq can actually disappear and reappear on the map, and they ALWAYS show up close to where you are, sometimes even right on top of you. This is what I meant when I said they gang up on you. Fortunately, there are a finite number of these guys on each floor. Make sure you give your best gear to your character. Having “Health Plus” and “Magic Minus” can make things easier as well. I think the best class for taking on the mansion early is Brawler, but only if you have the Total Relax technique. Together, these two can help you outlast every Sumthindarq that attacks you, even if you have a weakness to one of their attacks.
There’s treasure on every floor, starting with the 2nd. Grab each chest as you reach every new floor. The 2nd floor chest contains a “Gold Pendant” Power-Up which increases your post-battle Netti by 3. Floor 3 gives you a “Magic Minus” which reduces the cost of the equipped player’s spells by 1 MP. The 4th floor will give you “Reaching Zen”, an incredible Power-Up that makes its bearer immune to ALL status ailments! The final floor has a Rainbow Cube, which will seem… underwhelming. However, the cubes are related to a hidden boss battle, so just bear with it, I guess. On the far wall is a not-so-secret passage which will take you outside behind the mansion itself.
The other section to note is Jacksonii Jungle -> Sector S. Not only is another Rainbow Cube hidden here, but there’s some nifty treasure AND a hidden hacker battle. Give yourself the “Bronze Pendant” and “Health Plus” Power-Ups and then head to Jacksonii Jungle -> Sector S.
There’s only one way to go when you enter the area. As you move forward, you’ll see a couple of other players walk across a body of water, and our little White Hat will use their own skills to do the same. Walk to the top-most corner of the reservoir and go down the stairs that you find there. Go all the way around to the other side and you’ll find the Rainbow Cube that Completeboy mentioned. Nab it and head back to where the hackers disappeared and use the telepillar. Move along to the next telepillar to a third area where you’ll find your quarry. Pick yourself a fight and get ready to do some hacking!
Doubling and Splat are both Neutral-aligned Brawlers. Doubling will disable your Strike ability while Splat will disable Magic. Don’t worry about fixing that up just yet, though. Instead, hit ’em both with Input Lag so they can’t beat you down with multi-strike combos. Be sure to use Debug to cleanup the code after each time, though! I used this battle to figure out what happens if you let code integrity drop to zero. The game performs emergency cleanup, but you now have a chance of your turn being skipped for the rest of the match.
With the slime siblings slowed down, you can now safely use Debug to free up your Strike and Magic abilities. Both of ’em can reuse their hacks to disable your abilities again, so take out Doubling first. This way you can keep recovering MP with physical attacks. If you took my advice and equipped Health Plus, then you’ll pretty much be invincible for the rest of the fight once you’re down to one opponent. Clean up the goop and you’ll be awarded 151 Netti and a “Magic Minus” Power-Up, which reduces the cost of all your magical abilities by 1 MP!
After the fight, head upward and grab the contents of three treasure chests that await you at the end of the area: A “Cold Heart”, a Lunch Box, and a second Bronze Pendant! WOO!
I suggest heading back to Versicolor Village and gearing yourself and few other party members up for some rounds at the Arena. Farm yourself some Netti from Dangerous Species and buy yourself some new items, such as Power-Ups from Pawneeko or supplies from the item shop.
When you’re done, go into your menu and use the Log Out function to end the chapter.
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