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  -XS Main
  -Part 1 :: [07.21.03]
  -Part 2 :: [08.06.03]
  -Part 3 :: [11.22.03]
  -Part 4 :: [02.10.04]
  -Part 5 :: [07.14.04]
  -Part 6 :: [08.05.04]
  -Part 7 :: [10.12.04]
  -Part 8 :: [01.23.05]
  -Part 9 :: [05.24.05]
  -Part 10 :: [01.20.06]
  -Part 11 :: [10.12.07]
  -Part 12 :: [06.30.11]
  -Part 13 :: [02.17.12]

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"It's wearing a pink frilly nightgown, hot pink coat, bloomers, and capping off the lovely ensemble, a white chef's toque. This someone walks around the frog pond, sniffing the water and whining in one-word sentences about being hungry and wanting frogs. That's when I notice the huge lolling tongue. This is wrong on so many levels, I don't even know where to start. All I can think of is that this person would be the Grand Master at every GLAAD parade across the country, as soon as they figure out what side of the rainbow flag it's on."
     -Kelly, Final Fantasy IX Part 6

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Xenosaga : Part 3
By Sam
Posted 11.22.03
Pg. 1 : 2 : 3
As Shion runs through another door, we cut over to a different area, where Realians with guns and a bunch of A.G.W.S. are lying in wait to ambush any Gnosis. Virgil is in the back of the A.G.W.S. pack, in a fabulous lavender mech. They're all aiming for the turn in the hallway, because the Gnosis just couldn't go through the wall behind them and back attack everyone. But then again, they are highly stupid. Virgil randomly says, "Walkin' around like it owns the place." At his signal, the A.G.W.S. get in position to fire. Whatever it is they're aiming at, it's alone, according to Virgil.

Around the corner, the door opens, and out jogs Shion. Oh my God! Wouldn't it be a tragedy if these guys killed Shion, thinking she was a Gnosis? Where "tragedy" means "comedy"? As soon as Shion appears before them, the A.G.W.S. and Realians empty their clips at her. It would be such a glorious moment, but somehow not ONE bullet hits its mark. And she was a stationary target. Guys, I'm not even asking for death anymore! Couldn't you have at least caught her in the leg or something? C'mon, game designers, throw me a fucking bone here!

These guys have the aim of Stormtroopers.

Virgil growls when he sees a) who it is and b) that she isn't dead. "You. What the hell are you doing here?!" Shion looks up, quaking from head to toe, at the five or so A.G.W.S. and the dozens of Realians who very nearly killed her jiggly ass. I expect Shion to faint, or perhaps start crying. Instead, she glowers at Virgil and hollers, "What do you think you're doing? Those bullets could've killed me!" Virgil and I stare openmouthed for a moment. Even I didn't think she could be this short-sighted and self-centered. Hello, McFly! These guys are trying to protect FUCKTARDS LIKE YOU from the Gnosis! Virgil continues my rant and informs her that, for all they knew, there weren't any people left in this area of the Hoglinde. But there's no accounting for morons. Especially morons of Shion's caliber.

Shion, confronted with this very logical explanation, eschews it and screams at Virgil some more, because Lord knows HER problems are so much more pressing than his, what with them trying to save the crew and the ship and all. She whines extensively to this effect. "Here I am, getting attacked by Gnosis, I'm getting lost at every turn, and, and...Don't give me a hard time right now!" No. No no NO! No you DI'N'T, Shion! I didn't waste all that fucking time navigating the Hoglinde just for YOU to complain about getting lost! Kill her with your big gun, Virgil! For me!

For once, I'm glad to see a phallic object pointed at Shion.

Of course he doesn't kill her, even though it would be so in-character. Instead, he and Shion bicker back and forth a little more. Despite the annoyed people with guns all around her, Shion continues to cop a fucking 'tude. I sit at my desk and cry, because I just don't know if I can make it through this entire game if she's not going to shut up.

The exchange is cut "short" by a Gnosis--surprise!--coming through the wall. And then a little Gnosis comes up behind Shion! Wow, go them! I'll stop calling them stupid now. Very unfortunately, one of the Realians from the earlier lab scene knocks her out of the way of chalky death. He informs her of the location of the escape pods and tells her to get going. Shion tries to make the Realian guy come with her, but he's all noble and he doesn't want to hang around her anyway. Die, or escape with Shion? That's an easy choice. There's a big tragic fight scene with blood and gunfire and shit, punctuated by this inane conversation between the Realian and Shion. "Remember what we were made for!" he says, and he's holding her goddamn hand and everything. Jesus. "It's all right. This is what we were born to do." Shion doesn't like this explanation, and now she starts to cry. Realian Guy runs off, and Shion waves to his back, completely ignoring his admonition for her to LEAVE NOW.

Maybe it's just me, but if everyone I came across bent over backwards to help me get to safety, I wouldn't stand around in the middle of a deadly battle, talk to myself, wave at people, cry about The Cruel Nature of Death, and wallow in unwarranted self-pity. However, Shion is not me, and really, I'm quite thankful for that.

Leaving the battle behind, Shion runs deeper into the ship. We take a little break from her and return to the bridge, where Captain Moriyama is overseeing the losing battle in space. And things on the ship itself aren't looking too good, either. Most of the A.G.W.S. are out of commission, and as this is reported we see a couple of the Hoglinde's sister ships get blowed up good. The Captain confirms what we've learned about five times over by now: the Gnosis are after the Golden Penis Plate. I think it'd be funny if the Gnosis just decided to show up and do some killin' for the hell of it, with no ulterior motives. But I guess giant space whales and pointy monsters are more high-minded about these things.

The Captain suddenly notices that, hey, Jerkinov is nowhere to be found! We cut over to him, running through the ship in a spacesuit. Certainly not running away. Maybe he just needed a little extra oxygen to calm him down. Back to the bridge, and to the technobable-sprinkled action. Suddenly, a Gnosis flies right into the ship and the whole bridge explodes. I have to say, this part of the game is certainly satisfying my deep need for fiery, exciting explosions. It's like watching the Lethal Weapon movies, but the writing is even worse.

In the cargo bay, the home of the Golden Penis Plate that everyone is so concerned with, all his strangely calm and quiet. Jerkinov enters through a side door and removes his helmet. Strickland and his men inform Jerkinov that they've basically transferred control of the ship to the cargo bay, which is highly convenient, since the bridge was taken out five seconds ago. Good timing, guys. Jerkinov seems pleased enough, but Strickland isn't happy. He has a variety of confusing reasons for his objections to the plan, but Jerkinov stresses the importance of getting the GPP to Commander Margulis. We don't know why it's important, but we can be assured that it is. He orders Strickland and the boys to get into an escape pod and leave without him. Strickland doesn't like this much, either, because he doesn't want the Gnosis to kill his boss. "Listen, the Gnosis are insignificant!" Jerkinov yells. "They are nothing compared to what'll happen if IT awakes!" IT is awake, Jerkinov, and it would like to know why it's outfitted with blue hair, C-cups and tiny, tiny feet.

Jerkinov repeats his orders for them to escape, and cheeses it up a little by telling them they must survive, or "[his] death will be for nothing." What a drama queen. He descends to the floor of the cargo bay as Strickland and Co. salute him. A salute to Jerkinov: a melodramatic wanker for the ages. Sniff!

Back to Virgil's crew, still holding back the Gnosis. For some reason, Shion is still with them, or maybe they caught up to her. I don't know. But instead of running away, she insists on standing there in her knees-together-legs-apart stance, holding her hands over her ears, because if she can't hear the bullets, they won't kill her. "Damn it!" Virgil shouts. "Our weapons are useless..." At least someone figured it out. But you'd think they'd all know, since they have to develop a special weapon (KOS-MOS) just to fight them. Sigh. Doesn't anyone in this game pay attention?

One of the Gnosis launches a big explodey laser which obliterates most of the fighting force, but only knocks back our Important Characters Shion and Virgil. Shion drops her portable computer thing in the process. Virgil stands up and takes a look at the big gaping hole in the highbridge. He cries out the names of his fallen comrades, over whom another big ol' Gnosis is rapidly approaching them. Virgil is trying to think of a way to stop it, when his gaze falls first upon a dying Realian, then upon Shion. Ooh! Ooh! I know! Throw her to them as a sacrifice, and then run away! Everybody's happy!

Sadly, Virgil is thinking of something else. He grabs Shion's dropped computer and fires it up. Virgil, in order to let us know what he's doing, lets loose with an avalanche of exposition. The short of it: all those dying Realians over yonder have a last-ditch defense mechanism that can be controlled through computer units like Shion's. Which means Virgil is going to blow them up to get the Gnosis.

Now THAT is funny.

Oh, and also, that DME addict thing we heard about? It means Virgil likes to eat Realian brains.


Virgil explains all of this very calmly to Shion, like she isn't going to pitch a giant hissy about it. Dude, she overreacted when you were just talking bad about Realians. Now you want to explode them and then maybe dine on their gray matter. This means that Shion gets to go into Conscientious!Human!Mode. As Virgil starts puppeting the Realians, OMG What A Tragedy music starts up. "Stop it!" Shion cries out. "What do you think they are?" There's some rights-violation talk, which is largely a more urgent repeat of the argument Shion and Virgil had when they first met. Virgil quite rightly points out that since Shion knew about this function of the Realians, she very easily could have disabled it. But she didn't, because she's a hypocritical corporate pawn. And stupid. Have I mentioned that?

Realians start clawing at the Gnosis, getting ready to blow. Virgil, computer perched dramatically in his palm, wanks, "I am the conductor. And I intend to make full use of my orchestra." Dude, Virgil, I'm on your side. So when you say trite crap like that, it makes ME look stupid. Shion's screaming now, "Stop it! You have no right to play god with their lives!" Not that she plays god herself or anything. Wow, this is such a subtle commentary on modern-day cloning. So subtle, I didn't even notice the baseball bat to my temple!

How do you feel about Virgil eating brains?
That's so wrong. He should try some nice veal.
He'd go hungry on Shion, that's for sure.
What a great idea! All that protein is great for the Atkins diet!


"Using them as bombs...! I won't let you do this!" But he does it anyway. Kablooie! go the Realians. In all of Shion's whining, she of course didn't try to climb up to where Virgil is and physically stop him from carrying out his plan. No, the Shion Way is to yell until someone pays attention to you. Virgil is happily immune to her whiny crap. Unfortunately, it was really for nothing, since the Gnosis just leaps right through the explosion. I guess this one isn't afraid of fire like his brothers.

Well, all hope seems lost for Virgil and Shion. No one except KOS-MOS could possibly save them now. I guess all that's left is for Virgil to have a nice last meal of Realian cerebrum. Oh, but the medulla oblongata is the best cut. So tender. As the Gnosis approach, ready to make blackboard writing implements out of the pair, we'll end this recap. Oh, the suspense! Will KOS-MOS save the day? Will Virgil get to feast like a zombie? Will Shion ever shut up?

Yes, no and no. Oh well. Join me next time for some new characters and even more wang-tastic action!

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