And thus, the game is finished.
Going up the Warlords’ Tower, the “boss” actually wasn’t at the top level, but one level lower. Though I still had to go to the highest floor first because one of the enemies there had the key to the room. In the boss room the Castellan was just about to execute someone. The game didn’t let me prevent it, but thanks to the SoulWrought sword I ended his existence rather quick, seems the sword spoke true with regards to being able to cut the indestructible armor. The room behind the Castellans’ remains contained a chest with the Dark Slag that I quickly put into the Coffer. Since I had previously already unlocked the teleporter in Fire Mountain, travelling to the Anvil of Dawn was pretty swift. In theory, this area can be done rather quickly, depending on how fast one figures out the invisible maze, but I actually had to restart it completely because I seemed to have bugged out the teleporter that was supposed to get me to the last puzzle room. Instead, since I apparently went into the teleporter a little early, I was transported to the outside of the area, where I had to ENTER the area again through the front door to EXIT it before I could continue… weird. It kept doing that even after I did everything else in the area. In the end I loaded an earlier save that I had from before I went to the Anvil of Dawn and went through that part again, avoiding the teleporter at first. This time I arrived in the correct room, solved that puzzle and was able to continue on to the final area.
Well what a coincidence, the Warlord (who didn’t quite look like what I expected, I mean his armor didn’t quite give me the “leader of a great army” vibe… but ah well) was waiting for me, right there at the end, offering me a place at his side as a general, should I return the Dark Slag to him. While I get that the devs wanted to give the player a choice, doing a U-turn at THAT point would not make ANY sense for the character in the game, in my opinion. And obviously, if you decide to return the Dark Slag to him, the Warlord kills you on the spot. I went ahead and had a look at both the “good end” and the “good, but sad end”. The difference is there because in order to destroy the Dark Slag, you have to hurl yourself into the Anvil of Dawn which, obviously, has rather fatal consequences usually. But since the game has some ways to prevent it, if you have the necessary item and spell, you survive and return from your successful mission to be praised as a hero.
Conclusion: Decent game, though a bit lacking design- and implementation-wise, in my opinion. Not too short, not too long, managed to keep me entertained enough at least.
Next time I’ll most likely be writing about my Xenoblade Chronciles 2 progress.