Update 11: Trumpeting Intensifies

So... Lanzon, correct?
What are those...bubbles floating around you? Are they a magic of some sort?
I suppose you could describe them as the result of magic.
Necromantic magic, to be exact.
And who are you, Ms. Bizarre Two-Toned Hair?
I'm glad you asked! My name is Princess Iseria, third of seven--
Hohohoho! A princess, don't make me laugh. You hardly look the part! You look more like that wannabe-Herbalist!
...This garb is storied and sacred. Perhaps you'd like to retract that comment?
We're ghosts. What could you possibly do to us?

Are we not going to observe the mammoth and find a way around it?
Doing some requests'll be a better way to ease you in.
We need to take care of them anyway.

As you enter the designated area, you sense the presence of something nearby and look around.

Nnnnnnnope, nothing to our left.

Caterpillar to our right, though.
As you do so, you find your attention caught by a lone caterpillar monster, sitting silently as if staring at you.
Very well, then. The requester wants silk thread, correct?
That's what he said, yeah.
Very well then. All we have to do is--

Hey! Do not move before we're done planning!
But before you can come up with a plan of action, the caterpillar begins to leave. You recall Thaddeus's request: there should be some silk threads back at the monster's nest. In which case, following this caterpillar may lead you to the silk. You should probably chase after it.

This special Crawler actively avoids us, and is running to a position up and to the left.

Hah! Cornered.
So, uh, I gather that our plan is to just beat up the caterpillar?
It's just a caterpillar. We were able to kill one before we toppled Golem.

Having followed it for quite a ways, you finally catch up to stopped caterpillar. Is this its nest? As you're wondering this, you suddenly become aware of an intense bloodlust coming from behind you, and turn around.

I haven't seen this much lack of self-preservation instinct since B decided to cross me.
At least I'll finally have other poor souls to suffer the eternal torment of being joined to A in death...

There are even more caterpillars like the one you followed!

Even the original caterpillar seems to be glaring at you with malice in its eyes. This was all a trap meant to lure humans like you into their nest! But still, this is their nest. Once you've dealt with them, you can obtain the silk and complete your request. In which case, there's no reason to retreat! You draw your weapons and prepare for battle!

En guarde, caterpillars!

We're initially thrown into a fight with just one Crawler. However, within four turns...

We're fighting four of the things at once.

There's actually not that much to say about the fight itself, but I feel like comparing different damage outputs:

Gram with level 9 Target Arrow (175% damage).

Iseria with level 9 Chain Shock (200% damage per hit).

And Lanzon with level 4 Fire Bomb (141% INT damage).

Basically, Iseria's individual Chain hits hit for about the same as everyone else (slightly above, really), but she also had the advantage of being able to hit multiple times per turn if she has other setup. Her only setup for Chain Shock right now is Gram (since everything Gram herself can do is stab damage), but loading up on some Shock Jars or other party members capable of dealing volt damage helps.
Boy! I sure do love CHAIN!!
A couple of turns later...

What an exhausting annoyance.

Even at level 20, four Crawlers could be a little bit of a threat, especially if you're relying on a dodgetank.

All the caterpillars slain, you let out your breaths and sheathe your weapons. After making sure there won't be even more reinforcements, you think back to your original objective. According to the client, the silk should be somewhere in the nest. You should investigate the area.
Incidentally, if you finish the battle before all four Crawlers join in, the rest will flee.

You begin your investigation of the caterpillar's nest.
...Okay, I know the ghosts made fun of it, but serious question: how does your hair do that two-tone thing?
I'm not sure. Why doesn't yours?

Having split up to search different areas, Lanzon suddenly lets out a voice.
Over here, loves.
They found a giant hole hidden by the brush. No doubt this is the caterpillars' burrow. With its owners gone, there no reason not to enter, and you quickly find the silk you're looking for.

(Obtained Silk Thread!)
Let's take this back to Thaddeus, shall we?

Thaddeus: Ah... Could it be you've gotten the Silk Thread already?!
Yep. Here y' go, dear.
Thaddeus: Oh, thank you so much, now I can finally make the dress, Mia will absolutely love it--
Wait, Mia? That's your...fiance, right?
Thaddeus: ...E-excuse me, I got a bit carried away. Aha, erm, Mia is my fiance's name. I've always been considered "scrawny," even for a Lunarian, but she's not bothered by it at all. Oh, she is such a kind woman...
As interesting as that is, shouldn't you, I don't know, be off to get the dress made?
Thaddeus: ...E-excuse me again, I'm sure you're not interested in your clients' private lives. This should be a time of celebration! Aha, ahaha, ha. Aha. In any case, now that I have the materials, I think I'll be heading for the craftsmans district to find a tailor to draw up a design for the dress. My thanks again. I left your reward with the proprietor, so you'll need to talk to her for it. If you'll please excuse me...
Ah, to be young once again. He reminds me of Adrian all those years ago, hah.
Pardon, but who is Adrian?
My wife. Any time I wasn't looking after my brothers and sisters or doing farm work, she was at our doorstep, eager to go do something.
Did she travel here with you?
...Ha, I wish she could've.

It seems you've completed Thaddeus's request. Good work. I'm glad to see you can now handle these tough monster-hunting requests without even batting an eye. But if you want to go even further, maybe you should be taking more of my requests? *chuckle* Well, take your reward, and know that you've earned it. Thanks.

(Obtained 3 Therica As.)
(Obtained 3 Therica Bs.)

I had Sasha learn Labyrinth Search Skills just for some extra coverage for that skill.

Poison Bomb now has 285 base poison damage.

I had Gram learn Hawk Arrow since she'll need it for the hawk specialization in the future.

Poison Smoke now has 145 base poison damage, and multiplies poison infliction chances by 1.31x.

Can we observe the mammoth now?
Looks like we've got another request we should take care of. Something about sneaking up on...a scorpion...FOE...
At least the threat of a violent death by a stinger bigger than your heads should keep you on your toes, hohoho.

Easy enough.

You've successfully approached the scorpion without being noticed! Taking care not to startle it, you hold your breaths and carefully take out the Painless Syringe and stab it into the scorpion's tail. It begins to fill up with some bodily fluid from inside the scorpion, and as the name implies, it seems to cause no pain as the monster doesn't notice you. Once you've obtained enough fluid, you withdraw the full syringe.

While we're here, might as well look at this event too.
You arrive at the spot that the explorer marked on the map. However, you can't see anything that looks like treasure.
This is the vaguest possible treasure map. Ugh...

At that moment, Lanzon starts to point at the ground.
Right there.
They tell you that they can feel a faint trace of mana from that direction. Reaching the obvious conclusion, you all take out whatever weapons and tools you're holding and attempt to dig through the hard rock...

This is a Feats of Strength check--the event stops if you don't have it.
The ground may be strong, but Iseria is stronger.
After a little while of digging, a box peeks out from under the soil. Careful not to damage it, you remove the soil around it and bring it up. Based on its elaborate ornamentation there's no doubt in your mind that this is a box of treaure. As you reach out to open it...

If you had to resume the event from the previous Feats of Strength check without someone that knows Detect Magic, you'd get into a fight with some Alarm Cicadas after the last bit.
However, Lanzon stops you.
I know a monster alarm when I see one.
...But you can't see it. That's the point.
A figure of speech, Magda dear.
As an expert in magic, they can tell that this box has been set with a magical trap. Probably to deter thieves. If it had been opened carelessly, it seems it would have sounded a monster-attracting alarm. After closely examining the box and muttering to themselves a bit, Lanzon pushes in one of the decorations like a switch, and the box smoothly opens itself.

(Obtained 2 Lunarian Silver Coins.)
(Obtained Zepharia Silver Coin.)
It's full of rare silver coins! You have a quick celebration before putting them into your pack and returning to exploring.

Digging up treasure

You found a treasure box and, after dealing with the trap, successfully obtained the treasure.

Welcome back. Looks like you completed the request safe and sound. I'll deliver that toxin to the Royal Library's medical laboratories right away. And with the client guild's member saved, those explorers will be able to finally get back to adventuring too. Ah... Thank goodness...
You were really worried about one guild out of who-knows-how-many exist in this town?
Did you perhaps think we might fall prey to the scorpion?
Oh, no, I had full confidence in your success. It's just, you know, I've known the kids from that guild since they were first starting out. It's just such a relief to see them all safe and sound again. Oh, don't take that the wrong way: I do worry about you kids too. You may be skilled, but you'll always be rookies to me. I suppose I'm just the worrying sort. ...Anyway, I hope you don't mind me adding my own contribution to your reward. Really, thank you from the bottom of my heart.

(Obtained Corsica.)
Corsicas (+9 DEF, +21 MDEF) are made from 1 Blackened Claw (Giant Spotted Dog rare) normally.

I have Iseria level up Chain Fire to 3, since that can get another activation off Fire Bomb.

Lanzon learns Gourmet because he chews through TP real quickly, and doubling the amount restored by food'll help with that.

Now are we going to observe the mammoth?
YES. And please, for the love of the gods, at least call it Oliphant. It's less confusing.

As you continue through the rocky mountain, you come across a familiar figure surrounded by unpacked bags. Wihout thinking, you call out to him.

Huh? Oh, heya Nameless. What brings you around these parts? ...Oh wait, you're explorers. Duh.
I'm more curious what you're doing here. It's not every day you find your average shopkeeper just up in the Labyrinth.
Now me, I'm just your average businessman doing business with people exploring the Labyrinth. Trying to hook a few more potential regulars, if you catch my drift? Of course, you can buy something too if you'd like. Maybe it's fate! And let me tell you, I'm practically giving you this stuff for absolutely free*!
Absolutely free, eh? Couldn't hurt to look.

...Ceric. I dunno if you're naive or just very, very shrewd, but we'll take AS MANY AMRITAS AS WE CAN.
Holy SHIT Ceric why are you so fucking generous.
*only metaphorically free.
We're given a choice between three purchases: I buy 36 Amritas, which fills up our pack to capacity. After this, Ceric notes that our bag is full, and leaves.

THIS IS A ONE-TIME EVENT! If you want to stock the fuck up on Nectars and Amritas at a ludicrously cheap discount, this is your only chance to do it!

I actually have to drop off half of the Amritas at the inn, since our pack literally has no space otherwise.

Hm, didn't we have a challenge from the guard to take care of?
...Crap, yeah.
Yes, yes, we know, you want to get the Oliphant stuff over with.
Au contraire. I wish to spend as long as possible studying the magnificent beast!
As long as it doesn't get us killed, I suppose. Before that though, Iseria, dear, the guards.
As you arrive at the designated location, you see a few dozen soldiers gathered. One man, most likely the commanding officer, approaches you and begins to speak.
So you're Nameless, huh? First, I should thank you for accepting this sudden request. ...There's been talk lately about all the up-and-coming explorers in Aeolis. Some are even saying there's no need for soldiers anymore, what with the explorers protecting the country. I'm well aware that none of this is your fault, but us soldiers have our pride too, you know. Which is why we put out that crazy request for a contest.
Having said all this in one breath, the soldier stops to clear his throat before continuing.
The rules of the match are simple. We'll see who can defeat the most monsters on this floor without leaving. We can start whenever you're ready, but be careful, defeat so much as a single monster after we start and we'll consider the match official, so if you leave the floor after that we won't let you redo it. We're already ready, so just give us the word. You can even go back to town first, if you like.
Let the challenge commence!
All we have to do is fight enough battles to have killed 15 monsters and we'll get the maximum reward. I set an autowalk path in that small area to our right and let it run until I get into a battle.

Cliff Goat

HP: 278
STR: 43
INT: 37
VIT: 29
WIS: 32
AGI: 39
LUC: 39

Damage Resistances:
100% 100% 100%
100% 150% 100%

Disable Resistances:
50% 100% 100% 50% 100% 150% 150%
100% 100%
100% 100% 100%
Cliff Goats are our first exposure to panic, the second most dangerous ailment in the game (formerly the first until petrification got reworked). One Cliff Goat isn't a big deal, but multiple can be dangerous, since one panicked party member in a random encounter is workable, while two or more is dangerous.

(Received 2 Triangular Kitten Ears, 1 Chipped Goat Horn.)
Unfortunately, nothing of interest happened in that one particular fight.

A flying manta ray that can survive out of the water?!
Yes? Is that abnormal?
YES. Allow me to study it for a while...
She's got sparkles in her eyes...


HP: 525
STR: 52
INT: 41
VIT: 41
WIS: 33
AGI: 25
LUC: 45

Damage Resistances:
100% 150% 50%
100% 150% 50%

Disable Resistances:
100% 150% 100% 100% 150% 100% 50%
100% 100%
100% 100% 100%
Rockfishes serve only to annoy you with arm binds and then hit decently hard with normal attacks. Remember that arm binds are more dangerous for your party than in last games, since a decent chunk of support skills (namely Herbalist healing skills) use the arms now.

Uncoil your tail at once!

How I wish I could've studied it further...

(Received 1 Brown Feather and 1 Skyfish Tailfin.)
And then the turkey died from Poison Smoke.

At 10 enemies defeated, we get this message.
With that latest battle, you've defeated more than 10 monsters. At that moment, you see a smoke signal shoot up from another area of the floor.
Um, should we go help with th--
As you wonder if it's a distress signal or something, the guard behind you angrily interrupts your thoughts.

That's just a message from the squad. We don't need you worryin' about us, so just fight your own fights.
Seeing that the guard refuses to give any further explanation, you resume your hunt for monsters.

At 15, we get one final event.
With that latest battle, you've defeated more than 15 monsters. Once again, you see a smoke signal in the sky, probably some sort of message for the guard accompanying you. His face looks almost sorrowful as he silently gazes at it. A little while later, he turns to speak to you.

That's it. It's over. That just now meant they can't keep this up any longer. The long and short of it is that you guys won. Who knows what the townsfolk will say about us after this...
Continuing to mutter to himself, the guard slowly walks away. If you like, you could say something to him.
So what if they say the guards're pathetic? Prove them wrong. Get stronger. That'll show 'em that they can rely on you guys, eh?
You explain that all they need to do is get stronger and people will forget all about those doubts. The guard turns to face you with a look of surprise before immediately breaking into a laugh.
Ha ha ha! Yeah, it sure would be great if we could be as strong as you explorers. Yeah... You guys may have stolen a win this time, but we're still in the fight! How could we have let ourselves get so shaken by just some idle gossip...?
That's the spirit.
The lone guard nods with a satisfied look on his face before apologizing.
Sorry about this whole thing. And thanks for going along with it. I knew when I started this job that I'd have to be prepared for whatever people might say... Plus, I'm only doing this in the first place because I love my country... Or at least I thought I was. If it took all this to remind me of something so obvious, then I guess I'm just another greenhorn.
Despite his self-deprecation, his face is much brighter than it was a little while earlier.
Nameless, allow me to thank you once again. I'll be praying for your safety in the Labyrinth. I'll leave the reward at the bar, so go pick it up when you can. Now, if you'll excuse me.
Thanking you once again, the guard leaves. With this, the request is complete! All that's left is to report it at the bar.

Welcome back, everyone. Good work on that competition with the guards. You won, right?
But of course.
*chuckle* Not bad. But even the losers were looking pretty satisfied when they gave me the reward. I guess it's kind of like you lost the battle and won the war... Except you also won the battle? Anyway, thanks. Here's your reward. You've earned it.

(Obtained 2 Bronze Ingots!)
We get a larger EXP reward and an extra Bronze Ingot for getting to 15 monsters killed. Forfeiting or killing less than 10 monsters lowers the EXP reward.

I have Sasha learn Self Study to boost her WIS, since low magic defense is a pretty big flaw with Earthrun characters.

Hawk Arrow now deals 103% damage on the primary hit, and 369% on the hawk splash hits.

Poison Smoke now has 190 base poison damage, and increases poison infliction chances by 1.34x.

New floor means new junk.
Crossbow (+40 ATK, +36 MATK, WIS Up 1, Bronze x3) is made from 2 Skyfish Tailfins (Rockfish normal).

Hairband (+14 DEF, +13 MDEF) is made from 1 Skyfish Tailfin (Rockfish normal).

Goat Earring (Immunity to panic) is made from 2 Chipped Goat Horns (Cliff Goat normal).

Arm Guard (Immunity to arm binds) is made from 1 Skyfish Tailfin (Rockfish Normal).

Panic Gas (50% base chance to inflict panic on all enemies) is made from 1 Chipped Goat Horn (Cliff Goat normal).

Tanglethread: Head / Arms / Legs (60% base chance to bind all enemies' heads/arms/legs) is made from 1 Skyfish Tailfin (Rockfish normal).

And some forging. I had to use Bronze Ingots for Lanzon's Megalith 5006, since we, obviously, don't have more of Golem's normal drop in stock.

You have once again set foot in the territory of the enormous monster. Looking around, it appears that the Oliphant has hidden itself somewhere deeper in the room. Your mission from the Council is to find a way around it and continue further into the Labyrinth. You proceed with caution as you step further into the room.
The Oliphant room is fucking gigantic, so I map it out first. Note that random encounters are disabled in it.

There's also extra corner rooms.
As you approach a grassy area, you notice several large shapes gathered there. While you instinctively place your hands on your weapons, upon closer inspection they appear to be a species of gentle zebu cattle. Apparently they live in rocky areas by moving from place to place to graze on what little grass grows here. There appear to be both nursing calves and mother cows in the herd, so, if you're careful not to provoke them, you may be able to get some milk.
Stand aside, kids, let an old farmhand take care of this.
...Uh, how many years has it been since you last did farm work?
Hoping to obtain some supplies for the trip, you begin to approach the cattle. However, upon hearing your footsteps, the herd is spooked and begins to panic! Gram desperately tries to keep them in check while the rest of you milk the cows.

Gram now has a black eye for their troubles, but at least you got the Milk, somehow.
Oof. I've gotten rusty.

(Obtained 4 Milks!)
You can bypass the damage if someone in the party knows Animal Husbandry.

Wild cattle

You found a herd of wild cattle and, despite some injuries, successfully got milk from them.

Another point into Chain Fire.

As you climb the steep trail, you hear the cry of a bird. Instinctively, you stop and look around for monsters when you notice a gathering of wildfowl with large wattles. If you sneak up on them, you may be able to get some meat. But wild birds like these are sure to be cautious, so you'll need a skilled hunter.

Luckily you have Iseria with you. They step forward with a confident look on their face.
Allow me.
Moving silently and hiding their presence, Iseria approaches one of the birds and takes it down in a single blow with a large knife. It's quite a large animal, but they proceed to dress it with impressive speed. In a blink of an eye, what was once a bird is nothing but a pile of meat, which you place in your bag to cook later.

(Obtained 5 Animal Meats!)

Wildfowl hunting

You discovered some wildfowl and made use of your hunting skills to obtain some meat.

Lanzon learns Self Study to boost his INT.

Anyway, yes, Oliphant.
The previously hidden Oliphant has shown itself once again, perhaps detecting your presence. The sheer might of it seems incomparable to any monster you've faced before, and you highly doubt you could take it. Find some way to take advantage of the terrain to get past it!
Are you quite certain we shouldn't fight it? Not even for a minute or so?
If you want to get gored by those tusks, be my guest.

Oh jeez, that thing's quick.
Thanks to its enormous size, the Oliphant crosses a huge distance for each step you take! Overall, it seems to move twice as fast as you. In other words, if you move in a straight line it will definitely catch up to you. So what can be done to prevent this? You'll need to consider this as you make your next move.
Uh... Let's just...try to get to that rock, I guess...


Anyone that's played EO3 or EO4 might recognize that music--yep, it's The End of the Raging Waves again. It's used for every single postgame boss; contrast with previous games, which either entirely used Scatter About (EO2, EO3 excluding SQ bosses, EOU) or a mixture that involved Scatter About (EO1, EO4, EO2U). Basically my point is that Scatter About is gone, and thank fuck for that.

Oh, right, Oliphant. I'm sure this thing could be taken down with some smart planning, right?


HP: 35753
STR: 130
INT: 103
VIT: 121
WIS: 112
AGI: 99
LUC: 112

Damage Resistances:
75% 75% 75%
100% 100% 125%

Disable Resistances:
25% 50% 25% 75% 50% 50% 50%
0% 10%
50% 25% 25%
Honestly with its low hit-rate gimmick it's one of the easier postgame bosses.
That's a nice team...

(King Press.)

Perhaps that was less an attack, and more a show of strength...

Let's just get out of here before that thing warms up.

At this point I've just accepted that I've messed up, so I topple the rock that way for later.

As you sidestep the Oliphant, it slows itself down to face you. Apparently, its size makes it difficult for it to change direction. You'll need to remember this rule as you plan your moves.

Some fancy footwork later, and the rock has forced Oliphant to turn a bunch.

Far less time-consuming than Salamander or Wyvern.
Uh... Normally you would knock down the rocks before you trigger the chase. The room is basically designed as a big circle with some rocks to knock down in its way, so honestly it's not much of a puzzle.
You've safely managed to slip past the Oliphant, and can probably proceed further into the Labyrinth from here. You should report this method to the Council next time you return to town.
Hah... Hah... Gods, that was worse than being chased by an FOE...
What a majestic beast the Oliphant was! Oh, what I'd give for more time to study it...
I suppose compliments are due: the ancient society that found the Oliphants certainly knew how to pick effective war animals.

I open this shortcut and go back to town.

...I guess Remus wants to talk about cooking first.
What an intriguing phenomenon... Just place it in this sack and...wait? Such unconventional wisdom is truly what I'd expect from nomadic traditions...
Are we...interrupting something, Lord Remus?
Oh, Nameless. What brings you here today?
What were you talking to yourself about just now?
Perhaps you're already aware of this, but it was news to me. It's a technique passed down among certain Brownie circles. As it was told to me, a traveling Brownie was storing his milk in a hide sack while crossing the desert. Several hours later, his thirst had grown, so he reached for the sack, but the liquid had coagulated into something new.
That...does not sound good. "Coagulation" is generally not a term I want to hear with regards to nutrition.
He was surprised, but his thirst commanded he taste it, and he found it was delicious! Through trial and error, the Brownies he told of this experience managed to recreate the concoction, which they've called Honey Yogurt. Just place some Milk in this Custom Leather Bag, wait for several hours, then mix in olive oil and honey before heating. I hear it's very delicious- I feel certain you'd love to have some on your travels.
As skeptical as I am, we might as well give it a try.

(Obtained Honey Yogurt!)
(Obtained Custom Leather Bag!)

From what this sounds like, you've managed to agilely skip past the Oliphant, and find a route to the next floor...meaning we'll be able to further our exploration of the Labyrinth.
Yep, that's the gist of it.
Thank you, Nameless. I knew you'd be able to accomplish this. The Council has nothing but praise for your efforts, and I have a reward to present you.

(Obtained 3500 en.)

...That said, the more research I did, the clearer it became precisely how monstrously threatening this Oliphant is. Your route is good enough for now, but in the future we may need explorers who can remove it entirely. I'm hoping you'll grow into explorers of that caliber.

Bunker doesn't really work all that well when I have both Gram and Lanzon in the party, but I might as well level it up in the absence of anything else to do. Level 4 makes the Bunker have 95 DEF.

Hawk Arrow's first hit now deals 106% damage, while the hawk splash does 357% damage.

Poison Smoke now has 235 base poison damage, and multiplies poison infliction chances by 1.37x.

That'll do for now. Next time: 8F proper.
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