After clearing the Airship battle, I felt I was really close to getting sea access, which was something I wanted to get done before I would have to take a break from the game (which did not last nearly as long as I had hoped it would. ; ;)
After expressing this to Xmode and Sakurato, they decided to come help me finish the last few fights leading up to Al'Taieu, namely the three NM fights in Bibiki Bay, Carpenter's Landing, and the Misareux Coast, before moving onto the fight against Tenzen. I also managed to enlist Thazienne's help with the NMs, and so, the four of us went on a tour of Vana'diel.
The NMs were all really easy to a 75 party, even with just four of us. The only really dicey one were the Tonberries in Carpenter's Landing, mostly because of Mijin Gakure and Astral Flow. However, Mijin Gakure can be avoided by killing the NIN (the main Tonberry) first, as it seems he will immediately Mijin Gakure as soon as any of his three helpers die. Astral Flow hurts, but it's not as devastating as say, Kirin's Astral Flow, so we just weathered it out by killing the SMN last. However, given that all three Tonberry helpers have the same name, it's a little difficult to tell which is which, although I soon found out that you can differentiate the Tonberries and their jobs through the weapons they hold:
Star Wand: SMN
All three can use their respective 2-hr abilities, too.
On the bright side, as if to forshadow what was to come, our actions evidentaly attracted the attention of those infernal Taru trio, who sent us death threats in what must be one of the more amusing lines in the game, ^^
After clearing all the prerequisite NMs, it was time to get ready for Tenzen! Getting additional help from Saiddict and Ladyrikku, we were raring to go kick some Samurai butt as NIN WAR WAR RNG BLM BLM. The strategy was simple- because we do not change areas, and that the fight against Tenzen was uncapped, all buffs follow on through to the battlefield from outside Sealion's Den.
Thus, everybody gradded their Opo-opo necklaces and slept to 300% TP. The plan would then be to open with a Slug Shot to Calamity for Impaction, letting Sakurato and I both MB Thundaga III, and then just continue with whatever damage we could do, 2hrs and all. Unfortunately, Thazienne kept d/c'ing while sleeping for TP, losing TP each time he reconnected, and so on a whim, we decided to just try and 5-man Tenzen instead. ^^
NIN WAR RNG BLM BLM ftw.
To be honest, I have no idea what happened, since it was over so quickly. One moment, we were in there, and I was spamming through the cutscene, the next moment, I was casting Thundaga III in anticipation for the skillchain, and then, Tenzen gave up. o.O My screenshots show that I landed the killing Thunder IV, and given how I usually open with Thundaga III, move onto Blizzaga III before moving onto Thunder IV, Tenzen must've gone down really quickly.
Heck, we knew to treat him like the Snoll Tzar, so all I saw was a whole bunch of pretty lights and 2-hour abilities go off. ^^
And just like that, I was in Al'Taieu, with congratulating cheers going on about me. ^^
I have to admit, I could only spend about fifteen minutes exploring sea before I got a little...dare I say, "seasick"? For some reason, the sight of me walking on water ala "you-know-who"-style was rather disorienting, not to mention having to look up and down for aggro at all times. I eventually came back and got my map, and now, the planning begins as to how to get the rest of TrueRune up to here. ^^
Thank you, Xmode, Sakurato, Thazienne, Saiddict, and Ladyrikku for the help!