Besides non-obvious paths for where to go next, another thing that old-school adventure and RPG games are known for is the triggers to advance coming down to “talk to a random person in a town”. In this case, coming to the new, nearly deserted village (Except for some new weaponry), the gate to the castle was closed. I also learned about an island called Techna, where I could learn about Satellite (Much like the Save Maia quest, this seems to be the second generation’s “Oh yeah THAT’S my overarching goal….” quest.). Walking across this new land to another village (With more new weapons, making me feel kind of stupid that I had bought more weapons at the previous town), I learned that in the village I had come from, a girl was being held in the castle against her will.
Wait a second.
I also talked to a guy who said he had opened the castle doors, but couldn’t save the princess.
Hey, remember that castle with the close gate?
Yep, it was open, but I only did a little bit of exploring before returning to Hazetak. This was where I bought the Royal Needler for a stupid amount of money (Seriously, I don’t think Sega expected you to be able to afford it at this juncture). Now, the Royal Needler does about 100 damage on enemies, can hit groups…and, unlike swords, is a one-handed weapon.
Naturally, this meant it was time to purchase a second one. Ayn can now wreck pretty much everything single-handedly, and with the new weapons that Mieu (Two Ceramic Claws, if I recall correctly) and Wren (A Laconia Shot..interesting that Laconia was the legendary metal in the original Phantasy Star, and here I’m getting equipment made from it in Generation Two out of three), wield, they can clean up what Ayn can’t finish off on his own.
Something that I finally found in the passage to the fourth area (Where the two new villages were) was some new equipment, and more specifically, some new armor. I did find a Laser Shot as well, but that was quickly obsoleted by the Laconia Shot I bought on the other side. I’ve barely bothered upgrading armor, preferring instead to upgrade my weapons and take a “Either enemies will die in one round or I’ll die in 3” approach to combat. With 2 Royal Needlers, somehow I think I’ll be okay.