As I mentioned in my other topic, I've just finished Roron and taken the jetbike to Piata. There, I suffered some severe sticker shock. So I took a look at the weapon and armor lists at phantasy-star.net and it seems like most of the stuff for sale at Piata is the "top-of-the-line." For instance, once Amy equips the ceramic cape, there's not much else to buy. Or when Anna is dual wielding Laser-Slashers, she's got the best weapons money can buy for her. (And I know they're at Keuri, not Piata.)
Furthermore, around Piata, each encounter nets on average about 400 meseta, which is quite nice.
So what I've resolved to do is a grind to end all grinds. Basically, I am going to literally walk in circles around Piata and not progress any further in the game until 6 of my 8 characters are, as they say in the luxury car commercials, impressively equipped. Specifically:
2 Laser Knives (I had these already but I'll buy the Laser Sword at the end if I retain my sanity.)
Titanimet ($2300 more for 2 more points added to def over Titanigear? Sold!)
2 Laser Bars
Fibervest (that's the best she can do, it seems)
Laser Cannon (I've gotten this already and it owns.)
Silent Shot (I love the paralysis feature so much that I don't think I'll miss buying her acid shots)
Titanigear (I bought it in Zema. It would have been nice to know about the much much cheaper Silver Crowns)
2 Laser Knives
2 Laser Slashers
Everytime It's time to buy a new article, I'll Ryuka back to Paseo to get Shir on my team, since I'm not setting foot in a shop without her. So far she's only stolen a silver crown and a trimate, but anything's possible.
Also, in principle, I'd like to equip Kain and Shir, but they're not useful at this stage, and I'll need to do something with the gold I earn kicking ass for the rest of this game.
Well, after 8 hours and 3 minutes of gameplay (according to my Wii), I raised the 104200 (!) meseta necessary to give everyone the equipment listed above. This does not account for the money/time spent giving them the items I had already had at the beginning due to previous grinds, such as the Titanigears, Boots, and Laser Knives.
For the math geeks, this translates as roughly 13025 meseta per hour or 3.6 meseta per second. Perhaps the topic of a possible future FAQ would be to evaluate the best grinding areas based on optimal meseta per second?
If we extrapolate to determine how much time I theoretically would have spent to earn the 137930 meseta necessary to outfit all 6 of them completely, it should have taken roughly 10.6 hours. However, it certainly must have taken longer (I can't look at my game logs because part of the time I was actually adventuring) because I raised the funds for the initial equipment outside of Zema, not Piata.
Another way of thinking of this is that each of those Fire Wolf monsters gives 218 meseta. To equip my party as described above, I would have to kill around 633 Fire Wolves. How they are not extinct and how Piata is not overwhelmed by the stench of all the rotting carcasses is obviously a question the Genesis was not powerful enough to answer in a game.
Anyway, I'm looking forward to finally be able to get some adventuring in!
From someone whose played a lot of RPGs, and this one a couple of times, generally the best place to get money is in the next dungeon you're supposed to go to. It's safer near the towns, of course, but with Ryuka, Hinas, and the Visaphone, you're really not in any danger.
PS2, if I'm remembering right, tends to make the most expensive rarest monsters more or less common in the next area. Pretty much if your guys can handle the Head Rots, you can hold your own on Uzo for a while.
Keep it up! You've got a good team going.
Well, thanks to some skillful Hinas/Ryuka/Teleport usage, I haven't done any grinding since Piata, while still having enough money to equip everyone as I see fit. Unfortunately, I've attempted to get through Noah with a level 27 Rolf. (I know it's taken me a while but I set the game aside for a few weeks.)
I made it past the Demon guy pretty much by luck. All he did was posess my two weakest characters while Rolf and Rudo beat the snot out of him.
So I go back, save, then go through to Mother Brain, and get my butt kicked. Three times in a row. I can usually get Amy to cast Deban and Sashu just before she bites the big one, and then things just get worse from there. The way I see it, I have a few options.
1) Level up Amy so she can cast Gisar and Rolf so he can cast Megid. Also have Shir swipe a few Star Mists. After hours of effort, I finally get past Mother Brain and see the (possibly gratifying) ending.
2) Say "Screw it" and just watch the ending on Youtube.
What do you think I chose?
Anyway, I'm going to play the original Phantasy Star. I hear there's less grinding so it should be fun.
It depends on what you're satisfied with. Personally, I play games to play them, so watching somebody else finish, doesn't really cut it. On the other hand, I totally understand the no more grinding feeling.
You're levels are ok, but a little on the low side. My team, I just finished it tonight, was at 30, for Rolf, Rudo, and Anna, and 28 for Amy. There's a lot of luck in defeating with both Dark Force and Mother Brain, but Mother Brain's a lot more depenable.
I focused on Rudo and Rolf, as they had the HP to survive an attack without having to heal every turn. Amy and Anna hung on as healers for as long as possible, but I didn't give they special attention. Pretty much every turn they were alive was bonus.
In the end only Rudo was left, but only one of the party has to survive, so that's ok.
My Amy was almost out of magic, and I didn't have a full inventory because I went after Motherbrain and Darkforce in one go (there's something bugged up with my cart and it freezes if I try to get out with the Neisword). I'm sure with a properly set up party the battle would have been cleaner.
One of my biggest mistakes was wasting all that XP trying to train characters who I knew I wouldn't use in the endgame. I should have benched Hugh, and then picked Anna or Kain and stuck with one or the other.
But I remember when I was on the grade school basketball team, the coaches were required to give every kid at least 5 min of play, no matter how crappy they were, and I benefited greatly from this rule. So I empathize with Hugh and trained him out of pity. I do the same thing in the Fire Emblem games.
Anyway, storyline is good but, due to technical limitations, the delivery was a little flat. I remember the scene withe Darem being sad and at the same time a little silly. He just explodes and disappears. With better delivery, I might care enough to "earn" the ending.
20 years of technological advance have spoiled me :-P
Compared to modern games, PS2 has a very bare bones kind of delivery. I guess we were all supposed to fill in the blanks back then. The original Phantasy Star is one of my favorite games, however, so I tend to forgive the entire series for it's quirks.
PS2's ending is kind of odd, so you might want to check it out on youtube, just to see if it's worth the extra effort to finish it yourself. It sort of doesn't resolve, and some of the dialogue makes no sense, but it's also uniquely PS2 in that way. Until yesterday, I hadn't seen the ending for probably over 15 years, and about the only thing I really remembered about it was Hugh's bizzarely suicidal sounding statement (which I've always found funny for some reason.)
As a general note, during this era of RPGs, unless it's a Square RPG, don't bother leveling up all the characters, it's pretty much a waste of your time. This generally works in almost all RPGs, acctually, even today. You might, occasionally get stuck with an unleveled load you're forced to use, but it's rarely caused me a lot of problems. Square's the only one, I can remember, where the entire team is really important, and they'll nail you for not keeping the team leveled.
I beat the game a little over a month ago, and used everyone at the end. Of course I was playing it over the course of a few months (I actually wanted to beat it before the new year) so it wasn't such a big deal to me.
I think the deal with Darum was he had some dynamite (or maybe another type of explosive that would go off much sooner) with him, and he set it off. I feel a little better about that scene with this in mind. (It may indeed be obvious, but for the first time it seems like the explosion happens for no reason.)