If you read any of the reviews for The Last Story as it was released in Europe, you might have noticed the lack of multiplayer coverage. Whatever the reason, staff at Operation Rainfall in Europe have played through and come up with extensive coverage for those who are curious about the forgotten mode.
If you missed ‘Part I,’ you can read it here: Going Online with The Last Story, Part I.
In part two, we’ll take a look at the cooperative mode of The Last Story.
The aim of The Last Story’s co-op is for players to work together in taking down an endless hoard of enemies as well as vanquishing the main boss that accompanies the playing field. As with the ‘deathmatch’ mode, co-op supports up to 6 players, however you are restricted to just playing as the 7 main heroes: Zael, Dagran, Syrenne, Calista, Yurick, Lowell and Mirania.
Again, as with the ‘deathmatch’ mode, the weapons and equipment you are using in the main story will also be used in the co-op mode. The item pick-ups also return, aiding you in the fight.
The co-op mode has 5 different stages to play on. Lets have a ganders at them in more detail:
Kraken: The battle takes place inside a waterlogged cave; you’re fighting against a multi-tentacled Kraken monster. Not only do you have to put up with the Kraken’s tentacle attacks, but also the power beams that shoot from its mouth causing massive rocks and rubble to fall from the ceiling. Furthermore, it can use magic to inflict ‘Death*’ on you (*a countdown appears above your characters head, if it reaches zero you are dead) and Gurak warriors appear to try and slow your progress down. Deceptively tricky.
Last Cocoon: The Last Cocoon is a monstrous beast that can take on 2 forms and summon multiple enemies to hinder your progress in slaying it. Its first form walks sluggishly around the stage, on its hind legs, swiping at any nearby players and shoulder-charging any distant players. It can also throw multiple spears at you, causing major damage. Its second form is a lot more difficult to deal with as it moves onto all four limbs and starts running around the stage, knocking over anyone that gets in the way. Throwing bombs in its path can slow it down, but it doesn’t last for long and is soon rampaging around the stage again. All the while, Gurak enemies appear, including a Witch that summons a life-depleting spell that covers the majority of the stage. Probably one of the hardest co-op stages in the game, and you will need to put together a decent team to succeed.
Nebirous: This is the most unique out of all the co-op stages. The boss is Nebirous, a giant floating mirror-type thing. The actual stage is set in a Haunted House with many rooms and corridors to explore. Nerbirous is protected by a magical shield, which can only be destroyed by using silver arrows against it. Once the shield is gone you can attack to kill the boss. The silver arrows are scattered throughout the stage, so you need to find them to enable you in completing the stage. However, the stage is also home to Skeleton Archers that shoot ‘Paralyse Arrows’ at you, which can seriously hinder your progression. If you get the right team together this stage can be a breeze.
Muruk: Set in the same stage as Last Cocoon, Murk can be equally as difficult if you don’t have the right team together. A giant beast walks around on all fours, belly flopping on top of players to cause massive damage, and in some cases instant death, but that’s not the trickiest part of this boss. Every so often it will curl up into a giant ball and roll around the stage at lightning speed, followed by changing its element form into either fire or ice. A good team would include Yurick and Lowell, as they have the abilities to counteract Muruk’s magic. Even though there are no smaller enemies to deal with on this stage, the boss itself can make it frustratingly difficult.
Atar: Set in a huge coliseum-type stage, this final co-op level is by far the most epic. You’re fighting Atar, a giant dragon of a boss. Its attacks are relentless: dive-bombing players, shooting electrical beams that cover the whole stage, poison blasting and many more. It varies attacks from being airborne to on the ground, making it vital that you have a mixture of magic users and close combat weapon users on your team. However, just when you think you have the upper hand on Atar, a second giant dragon appears, causing all sorts of havoc. Certainly the most epic co-op stage, and you get a great sense of achievement IF you manage to beat it.
A nice video of Co-op mode against Muruk:
New weapons, items and materials.
One of the coolest aspects of the online multiplayer is the amount of new weapons, items and materials you can receive. Doing well in either mode can reward you with new weapons that are not available in the main game. However, you are able to take your newly acquired weapons into the main story and level them up accordingly.
Deathmatch mode can also reward you with ‘Special Dyes’ that can give your characters a slightly new aesthetic look. These can range from fluttering butterflies, a divine halo glow or even musical notes that rock out around your character.
CO-OP mode can reward you with exclusive materials that are needed to level up your weapons and equipment. This can then make you a formidable player when you return to the online world.
Unfortunately, The Last Story does not use Nintendo’s Wii Speak peripheral. Instead you can communicate with other players by assigning words and phrases, spoken by all the main characters, to your controller’s d-pad. You can communicate either in the online lobby or during the actual gameplay.
The amount of dialogue to choose from is staggering, with many humorous and surprising phrases to use. However, from my own personal experience, I found that some players like to abuse their dialogue, both in the lobby and in game. This can get beyond annoying, but thankfully there is the option to turn the voices off.
While The Last Story’s online modes are slightly hindered by the Wii’s online service drawbacks, it is still a very impressive mode that will have you returning to the online battlefield on numerous occasions. I would say it is definitely up there as being one of the best online Wii games.
Whilst European players are unable to play people in South East Asia, they’re able to play those in Australia. This could be down to both territories using the PAL system. Hopefully when The Last Story is released in North America, they will be able to join the fight with the rest of the world. It will be worth it.
Excited to fight together when The Last Story ships in America? Comment below!