Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep
The Cursed Coach spawns from Lady Tremaine and her two daughters' murderous jealousy, attacking Cinderella and the Grand Duke. It spawns after they discover that Cinderella's foot fits the glass slipper, so the Grand Duke (as an eyewitness) escapes the Cursed Coach and manages to warn Aqua of its presence. Aqua rushes to Cinderella's rescue, and Lady Tremaine and her two daughters are hit by one of the Cursed Coach's bombs raining down from the sky. Aqua then holds off the Cursed Coach, allowing Cinderella to escape.
The Cursed Coach is a large Unversed that resembles a warped version of the pumpkin carriage from Cinderella. Its main body is a large, dark orange pumpkin with a wide, crooked mouth with thin white lips and teeth. It has large black markings on it that seem to be its eyes at first glance, but the Unversed's actual (red) eyes are on the small grey stem of the pumpkin. The pumpkin has two thorny, pale yellow tentacles on the sides of its body that are tipped with pale yellow and blue flowers. Four black thorny vines curl into large "wheels" underneath the pumpkin. Both the Cursed Coach's false eyes and its actual eyes are set in sorrowful expressions and the Unversed emblem is displayed below its mouth.
In Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep Final Mix, the Cursed Coach receives a new coloration. Its body is now turquoise, its tentacles and "wheels" are a yellow-chartreuse color, its flowers are yellow and red, and its stem is black.
The Cursed Coach's name is a clear reference to its warped appearance. The coach is somewhat similar to the deformed pumpkin carriage from Cinderella III: A Twist in Time, which Lady Tremaine used to send Cinderella away from the palace, while Anastasia, disguised as Cinderella, married the Prince.
The battle against the Cursed Coach, as it is one of the earliest boss fights in the game, is designed to test the player's knowledge of Aqua's strengths and weaknesses. It is important to remember that Aqua favors magic over physical strength or speed. This means all abilities equipped to her should be magic-based for maximum damage. Aqua also will have access to Shotlocks, D-Links, and Command Styles, so be sure to use the extra power these special abilities grant wisely.
At the start of the battle, immediately Lock-On and close the gap between Aqua and the Unversed boss by using a fast-paced, long-ranged attack such as Barrier Surge, as this attack can hit three times in one use and is able to deal a significant amount of damage. As with most bosses, the player should then change to a hit-and-run strategy, utilizing Aqua's magical prowess to conquer the boss instead of physical might (magic will also allow Aqua to stay slightly out of the boss's attack range, preventing most damage while still hitting the Unversed). The Cursed Coach will attempt to escape Aqua by wheeling around the battlefield just out of attack range, so keep within range by using a chain of Cartwheels.
When the Cursed Coach begins to leap around the battlefield, it will create shockwaves each time it lands. These shockwaves have a relatively short range and should be dodged with Cartwheel or blocked with Barrier. After taking enough damage, the Cursed Coach will be stunned. The player can then use the command "Turnover", which will cause Aqua to flip the boss onto its back (the boss will drop much-needed HP prizes amongst other small rewards). This is the time to utilize physical attacks, especially those leading to Command Styles like Spellweaver. The player should exercise caution, however, as the Unversed will quickly gain its senses and begin flailing about wildly while projecting a dark aura in hopes of damaging Aqua. During this time, stay out of attack range and dodge with Cartwheel.
As the Cursed Coach's HP dwindles, it will open its large maw and attempt to suck Aqua in. This attack can be avoided if Aqua remains behind the Cursed Coach, but if she is captured, rapidly tap to escape. Physical attacks can be used here if one is cautious. Should the Unversed boss being to spin around the battlefield, simply Cartwheel to dodge. When the Cursed Coach levitates above the ground, it will use its deadliest attack, where it shoots numerous bombs at Aqua. Chain several Cartwheels together to avoid the boss, and do not attempt any offensive maneuvers whatsoever. Should the Cursed Coach spawn the Thornbites to distract Aqua, avoid them and remain focused on the boss, as defeating the Thornbites is only optional and does not provide a worthwhile reward. So long as the player heals when necessary and utilizes all special powers granted by Command Styles and the like, defeating the Cursed Coach will not be difficult.
Rematches at the Mirage Arena
The Cursed Coach returns in the Mirage Arena, fought in the Wheels of Misfortune match. Serving as the final boss after several waves of Unversed have been defeated, the Cursed Coach will utilize the same attacks as in its first battle with Aqua; therefore, the same strategies can be utilized to defeat it. The only differences in this battle will be the Unversed boss's greatly increased HP, the possible presence of any friends (if the player selects co-op mode), and the increased power of the player's attacks. Should the player choose to face the Cursed Coach as Terra or Ventus, they merely must change strategies to one that suits a particular character's strengths and weaknesses (recall that Terra favors brute strength, Aqua magic, and Ventus speed). Due to the player's greatly increased power and any help the player may get from friends, the Cursed Coach will be quite easy to defeat, clearing the Wheels of Misfortune event.
The Cursed Coach makes a last stand in the Villains' Vendetta match. The same strategies utilized in past battles can be used to defeat it. The player should make sure that their character is at a relatively high level, having their most powerful abilities equipped. This will not only ensure that maximum damage is dealt to the boss, but also that the player's character takes as little damage as possible. As always, remember Terra, Aqua, and Ventus's different fighting styles, make use of Command Styles and the like, and be sure to heal if necessary.
Notes and references