[top] Final Fantasy IV - Game Plus Tips

Version <#version> 1.4  2008, 2009, 2010 Bill Pringle, all rights
reserved.


    [toc] Table of Contents

    * Introduction <#intro>
    * Differences from Original Game <#diffs>
    * What Carries Over <#carry>
    * Abilities Overview <#abilities>
    * Critical Points in the Game <#critical>
    * Obtaining Rare Items <#items>
    * First Time Through the Game <#first>
    * Second Time Through the Game <#second>
    * Third Time Through the Game <#third>
    * Maximizing Stats <#max>
    * Optional Bosses <#boss>
    * Thanks and Credits <#thanks>
    * Version History <#version>

The purpose of this FAQ is to help you take full advantage of the Game
Plus feature for the DS remake of Final Fantasy IV. This includes tips,
suggestions, etc. on how to make the second and third time through the
game much easier than the first time, allowing you to sit back and enjoy
the game more.

The very first time you play the game, you start the same as in previous
versions of this game. However, once you have completed the game, some
of the stats and items from your previous game(s) are retained when you
start another game. You may restart the game twice, which means you can
play the game a maximum of three times on a given game save. The section
What Carries Over <#carry> gives a complete description of what is
retained for what I am referring to as "Game Plus". This term has been
used for various games, and each time it means something slightly
different, which has caused some confusion. For example, for Chrono
Trigger, game plus means that your HP, MP, (most) items, and money are
retained. For Radiata Stories, certain skills are retained, and former
friends are remembered. Radiata Stories game plus also allows you to
continue the game, enter a bonus area, or start a new game. For this
game, however, Game Plus starts pretty much the same each time with the
exception of certain skills and items which are listed in the section
mentioned.

There are lots of good FAQs on this game that can help you get through
the first time (including the Official Strategy Guide from Brady). (You
can even use an original SNES guide!) What I haven't found, however, is
one that tells you how the second and third time through the game is
different than the first time. Although the actual game is the same, you
will find the subsequent times through the game are much easier, and so
your strategy is less important. However, your goal during the second
and third time is to create a final party during the third time through
the game that is powerful enough to take on the optional bosses. That is
why I wrote this FAQ.

For example, the strategy for boss fights changes, depends on what
abilities your characters have equipped. Each time you play the game,
your party can get more abilities, so you can equip them on different
party members. By the third time through the game, you will find you can
beat many of the bosses using Auto-Battle, provided you have set your
party up correctly.

The Introduction <#intro> provides a description of the various sections
of this FAQ. This will help you determine what sections of this document
are of most interest to you. The original intent of this FAQ is as a
supplement to a good walkthrough (and there are plenty of those.) It
points out some things that your walkthrough might not mention (like the
Critical Points in the Game <#critical>) for the first time through the
game, but also gives hints on how to modify your approach during the
second and third time through the game. As I said, it did not start out
to be a comprehensive FAQ, but then again my "Radiata Stories Recruiting
Guide" started out as a supplement, and eventually evolved into a
complete FAQ. This may happen here as well. Stay tuned.

Top <#top>


    [intro] Introduction

Final Fantasy IV was the first real Final Fantasy game I played when it
was released for the Super Nintendo system as /Final Fantasy II/, and
got me hooked on the Final Fantasy series. The game has been released on
several platforms relatively unchanged until the DS remake. The fact
that a game this old can be brought out again with only minor tweaks and
be quite popular is credit to a great series.

This document can be found in two forms: an HTML (web) page at
http://BillPringle.com/games/ffiv_gameplus.html
<http://billpringle.com/games/ffiv_gameplus.html>, and as a text file on
http://www.gamefaqs.com/. The HTML page will probably be updated more
often, and tend to be the latest version. The HTML web page will include
hyperlinks, so you can click on a link to find the appropriate section.
The text file was created by the FireFox browser, which inserts
hyper-links inside angle brackets (<like-this>). To find that location
with a text editor, use the search feature to find the target name in
square brackets ([like-this]). The link inside angle brackets will
always start with a pound sign (#), indicating that the target is on the
current page. The square brackets won't have that pound sign. For
example, to find the target of link <#intro>, search for [intro]. If you
are going to have an electronic copy of this FAQ, I recommend that you
get the HTML version instead of the text file. If you have any
questions, comments, etc. you can send me an e-mail to wrp103@gmail.com
<mailto:wrp103@gmail.com?Subject=Comments_FFIV_DS>. I get a lot of spam,
so make sure you include "FFIV" or "Final Fantasy IV" in the subject
line, or it might get deleted without being read.

This document is organized as follows:

Differences from Original Game
    If you are familiar with the original game, this section can help
    you understand the differences in the remake. If you aren't familiar
    with the original, you can skip this section. 
What Carries Over
    This section explains what sections of the game are preserved during
    subsequent times through the game. 
    When you end the first game, you will have a chance to save again.
    This save can be used to start a new game with some of your items
    and accomplishments from the first game preserved. Your characters
    start off at their initial levels, and your money and most of your
    items are gone. When you finish the second time, you can save again,
    and use that for your third and final run through of the game. 
Abilities Overview
    This section describes the abilities, how you get them, and how they
    can be used. 
    During the game, you may obtain a number of items which have the
    power to grant abilities to members of your party. You can choose
    who to give them to, but once they are learned, you can't change it
    (or unlearn it.) For most of these items, you can get them each time
    you play the game, which means that you can have up to three
    characters gain that ability. 
Critical Points in the Game
    This section identifies where decisions must be made and/or
    preparations made before proceeding. Failure to do this can result
    in you not being able to get the augments you want. 
    For example, just before a character leaves your party, you will
    want to take off any equipment they have, especially if they have
    some of the bonus equipment, or you might end up losing some rare
    items. 
Obtaining Rare Items
    This section suggests ways to get the rare items that are carried
    over - apples, drops, and tails. Apples allow you to increase the HP
    of a character; drops increase MP; and tails can be exchanged for
    special armor and equipment that carry over between games. By
    obtaining these special items during the first time through the
    game, you will make the second and third time through much more fun
    (and easier.) 
First Time Through the Game
    General suggestions about your first pass through the game. It is
    not intended to be a complete walkthrough, but rather what you
    should keep in mind during your first time. 
Second Time Through the Game
    Guidelines for the second play through. Again, not a walk through as
    much as the big picture. 
Third Time Through the Game
    The differences between the second and third time through the game. 
Maximizing Stats
    How you can maximize your party. This is needed if you plan to take
    on the optional bosses. 
Optional Bosses
    This section discusses the optional bosses created for the remake:
    how to find them and how to fight them. 
Thanks and Credits
    Those who provided help with this guide. 
Version History
    The change history for this document.

Top <#top>


    [diffs] Differences from the Original Game

Graphics
    The first obvious difference from the original game is the graphics,
    which are much better. I don't care for the fact that Rosa and Rydia
    look more like sluts than they did in the original game, but I guess
    that is to be expected. The voice overs is another addition. I
    normally play games with the sound turned all the way down, so that
    wasn't as big a thing for me. (Although I noticed that they
    pronounced many of the names different than I had thought they were
    pronounced.) 
    The game has several new cut scenes that provide additional
    back-story information. You see events with Cecil's father and
    mother, as well as what caused Golbez to turn towards the dark side. 
Auto Battle
    This is a handy feature that eliminates a lot of the button mashing
    you would otherwise need to perform. The Abilities menu allows you
    to customize the battle menu, which are the commands that you can
    issue during a fight. You can also specify an /Auto Battle/ action,
    which can be any ability that the character has: an attack, an item,
    or a magic spell (including summon). 
    Pressing the *X* button during a fight toggles Auto-Battle. When the
    next fight starts, the Auto-Battle mode is the same as when the
    previous fight ended. You won't use Auto-Battle a lot during the
    first time through the game, but can use it extensively during the
    second and third times. 
Ability Augment Items
    Characters can gain additional abilities by using special items.
    Some items are automatically obtained at certain points in the game,
    while other items can only be obtained by giving ability items to a
    specific character. Each character can equip up to five abilities,
    one of which must be "Items". Some abilities are passive, while
    others must be activated by selecting the ability from the battle menu. 
    This topic is covered in more detail in the Abilities section
    <#abilities>. 
Tails and Armor
    Instead of a single rat tail, several dragons drop tails which can
    be traded in for special armor which can carry over through to the
    next game. 
    This topic is covered in more details in the Rare Items section
    <#items>. 
Map Completion
    Maps are filled in as your party travels about. As the maps of
    dungeon floors are completed, you gain items. When you complete all
    the maps, you gain the /Treasure Hunter/ ability. 
Namingway Quest
    In the remake, Namingway has a bigger role. Rather than him allowing
    you to change the names of your characters like he did in the
    original version, He keeps changing his own name in different
    situations. He will ask you to find an item or to do a favor for
    him. As you complete each side quest, you earn a prize, and he will
    show up later under a different name. You can only complete each
    Namingway side quest once. 
Wht
    Wht is a special Eidolon that Rydia can summon to fight in her
    stead. Unlike other eidolons that perform a single attack, Why keeps
    on fighting during the battle. 
    There are several mini-games you can play using the fat chocobo to
    increase Wht's statistics. Also, there is a special ability you can
    get from Namingway that is affected by how many times Wht is summoned. 
Fat Chocobo
    During the original game, the fat chocobo stored your items. For the
    remake, you aren't limited to how many items, so instead the fat
    chocobo keeps track of the Wht minigames and game statistics (like
    the Bestiary). The Fat Chocobo can be talked to at certain locations
    and can be summoned using gysahl greens in chocobo forests. 
    There is no whistle in the remake. 
Optional Killer Bosses
    Like some other Final Fantasy games, there are near-impossible
    optional bosses for those of you who are in need of a severe
    challenge. I recommend that if you want to try these bosses, you
    wait for the last time through the game. 
Game Plus
    The other big difference is the purpose of this FAQ - the Game Plus
    system. At the end of your first play through, you have the option
    of saving your game. You can then load that saved game to start the
    game over with certain things carried over. You can play a total of
    three times through the game. Your characters start over with their
    stats, but they keep certain special abilities they accumulated in
    previous games. These abilities allow you to gain additional
    abilities during subsequent times through the game, as well as allow
    your characters to increase their stats much quicker than the first
    time through. 

Top <#top>


    [carry] What Carries Over

The following carries over to the next game:

Map completion statistics
    When you first enter an area, the only part of the map you can see
    is the area near you. As you move around, you can see more and more
    of the map. Once you have exposed part of a map, it will be
    available each time you enter the area. This includes the locations
    of chests, so during subsequent times through the game, as soon as
    you enter an area, you will see what chests are available, and which
    ones have been opened during this time through the game. 
    This implies that the items you get for completing a map can only be
    collected once. This should only happen during your first time
    through the game, but if you somehow mess up and not complete a map,
    you can do so during the next time through the game, collecting the
    item. 
Extra Abilities learned from items, along with any unused items
    Once you give a character an item to learn an ability, they retain
    that ability through all future playings of the game. This affects
    what ability items you gain from a character during subsequent run
    throughs. For example, you need to give Edward two augments in order
    to get his two - Salve and Hide. You should give him two abilities
    during your second time through the game (not the first time).
    During the third time through the game, you will get another copy of
    his abilities even if you don't give Edward any abilities durng that
    run through, since Edward already has two abilities. 
Rare Items - Tails and their Armor, Apples and Drops
    I recommend that you get a complete set of equipment from tails
    during your first play through, so you can take advantage of the
    superior armor during subsequent times through the game. 
    I also recommend that you don't use any apples or drops until the
    last time through the game. Of course, if you are close to maxing
    out on drops then you should use them so they don't go to waste. 
    If you are using the onion and adamant equipment, you will probably
    have no trouble taking out enemies. You can probably use auto-battle
    during all but the hardest boss battles. Where you want to beef up
    your characters will be if you try to take on the optional bosses,
    which I would recommend you do during your third time through the game. 
Fat Chocobo statistics
    Any scores from the fat chocobo mini-game are retained. Also, the
    bestiary is kept. This is helpful because there are some bosses take
    on several forms during a battle. You have to make sure you don't
    defeat them too fast so that you can include their new form in the
    bestiary. If you are careful during the first time, then you can
    just blow them away during subsequent run throughs, since the other
    forms are already in the bestary. 
Dark Matter
    Edge can steal Dark Matter from Zeromus. This can then be used
    during a later play through to summon one of the optional bosses. 
    If you take out Zeromus before Edge steals the dark matter during
    the first time through the game, make sure you equip onion gear and
    have everyone defend while Edge steals during the second time
    through the game so that are sure to get to fight the optional
    bosses during the third time through the game. Once you have the
    dark matter, you can finish Zeromus. 

Top <#top>


    [abilities] Augment Abilities Overview

Augment abilities serve several puposes: (1) they provide abilities to
the characters who learn them, (2) they affect what abilities you get
from other characters, and (3) they affect what statistics increase when
a character levels up from level 70 and 99. (Their stats increase by a
fixed amount up to level 70, regardless of what abilities they have.)

Some abilities are earned if you gave a certain character one or more
abilities. Since abilities carry over, so if you give a character an
ability during the first time through the game, you will get the
resulting abilities three times - one for each time through the game
(since the character already has the required number of abilities during
the second and third time through the game.) If, however, you don't give
abilities to a character until the second time through the game, you
will only get two copies - during the second and third time through the
game. You can't get all abilities the first time through the game, so
you might want to think about which abilities best suit your fighting
style.

I used Auto-Battle through most of the game, especially the second and
third time through. I was often able to beat bosses using auto-battle
during the second and third time rather than whatever strategy I needed
during the first pass of the game. Normally, I had the following
abilities equipped. Since /Items/ is required, I don't list it in the
battle menus.

Cecil
    Auto-battle: /Attack/, and then /Kick/ when available
    Battle menu during the first game: /Kick/, /White Magic/, /Counter/,
    and /Draw Attacks/ 
    Battle menu during the second and third times: /Kick/, /Counter/,
    /Level Lust/, and /Gil Farmer/ 
Rosa
    Auto-battle: /Pray/
    Battle Menu: /Pray/, /Dualcast/, /Omnicasting/, and /Fast Talker/.
    (/Piercing Magic/ equipped when needed.) 
Rydia
    Auto-Battle: When young: /Defend/ until stronger, then
    /Item->Equipped Rod/ (or /Summon->Wht/ while leveling up) 
    Battle menu when grown: /Attack/, /Summon/, /Fast Talking/, and
    /Limit Break/ (last time) 
Kain
    Auto-battle: /Attack/, then /Kick/ during the last time
    Battle Menu: /Attack / Kick/, /Jump/, /Darkness/, /Phoenix/ 
Edge
    Auto-battle: /Steal/
    Battle menu: /Attack/, then /Kick/ second and third time, /Steal/,
    /Reach/, /Counter/ 

The above list reflects my personal battle style. If you used items or
magic more, you might want to set them up differently. You notice that
only Cecil, Kain, and Rydia are attacking during /Auto-Battle/. Once
Edge steals an item, you can turn off auto-battle and let him fight, or
you can do like I usually did and just let him continue to try stealing
(he doesn't do that much damage anyway.) One of the reasons I kept
auto-battle on is because it gave Rosa a few more times at /Pray/. My
party was almost always at 100%HP, with maybe Cecil down a few MP points.

Each ability will increase certain character stats by a fixed amount
every time a character levels up between 70 and 99. In order for a
character to take advantage of this bonus, the ability has to be
equipped at the time of level up. This means that when a character is
between levels 70 and 99, you should equip them with abilities that will
give them status boosts rather than your normal preferences. If you are
having problems defeating enemies, you can equip optimal abilities most
of the time, but then switch to the bonus abilities just before they
level up. Once a character reaches level 99, you can equip them however
you like. You might want to rearrange abilities as each character maxes
out some of their stats. See the Maximizing Your Stats <#max> section
for more details.

Here are the augment abilities, what they do, and what you should do
with them:

????'s Love
    You can only get this ability once in the game. Namingway will give
    it to you as Lovingway. (Remember that the Namingway side quests can
    only be done once because it carries over between games.) 
    This ability boosts the strength of the party by the number of times
    that Rydia has summoned Wht. Lovingway will ask you for the name of
    somebody special (whose name is not more than four characters), and
    the ability will be given that name. 
    The level up boost for this ability is 10 HP, 5MP, and then 1 for
    every other stat. This is the best boost you can get (along with
    Limit Break), so use it wisely. You probably want to put it on
    somebody who won't be getting /Limit Break/. Since I gave /Limit
    Break/ to Kain and then Rydia, I gave this one to Cecil. 
Adrenaline
    You get this ability from Cid, provided you gave him at least two
    augments before entering the Dwarf Castle underground (probably
    during the first time through the game). 
    This ability doubles attack power whenever the HP of the character
    is critical. 
    The level up bonus increases strength by 1.
Aim
    Rosa comes with this ability, and is the only person who can use it.
    It increases her accuracy with a bow. Since I normally have her
    /Pray/, I don't tend to equip her with a bow, and so I don't use
    this ability. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Analyze
    Cid comes with this ability, which lets you examine the stats of the
    enemy. You can get a copy from Cid after the Falcon has been modified. 
    The level up bonus is 1 intelligence.
Attack
    Everyone comes with this ability, although I usually replace it with
    /Kick/ when possible. 
    The level up bonus is 10 HP and 1 strength.
Auto-Potion
    You get this from Rosa when she is sick in Kaipo. 
    This ability causes the character to use potions when damage is taken. 
    It is pretty much a useless ability, which means you want to give it
    to characters in order to get their abilities. This first time
    through, give it to Palom or Porum so you can get their augments.
    The second pass, give it to Edward so you can get Salve and Hide. 
    The level up bonus is 10 HP and 1 stamina.
Bard Song
    This ability allows you to sing various songs that can affect your
    party or the enemy party. You get it from Edward even if you didn't
    give him any abilities. Tellah is a good candidate for this ability
    during your first play through so that you can get his abilities,
    plus it has some decent effects, but Tellah will run out of magic if
    you use it too much. Give it to whoever you want during subsequent
    games. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Black Magic
    Several mages possess this ability. There is no item to let another
    character learn it. 
    The level up bonus is 5 MP and 1 intelligence.
Bless
    You get this from Fusoya when heading for the final battle. Once you
    have cast it, the party gradually recovers MP during the battle. 
    The level up bonus is 1 spirit.
Bluff
    You get this from Palom if you give him at least one augment. This
    ability greatly increases black magic damage. 
    The level up bonus is 1 intelligence.
Brace
    This ability greatly increase defense. You get it from Yang if you
    gave him at least two augments before he stops the cannons in the
    Tower of Babil. 
    The level up bonus is 10 HP and 1 stamina.
Counter
    If a character with this ability equipped is attacked physically,
    they will counter-attack using the first battle command (usually
    Attack). 
    If you have /Kick/, then make it the top ability in the battle menu.
    This will cause the character to attack all enemies any time they
    are hit. If you also add /Draw Attacks/, you can cause serious
    damage to enemies. 
    Make sure you get this each time through the game. Equip it on
    Cecil, Edge, and Kain (in that order). During your last playthrough,
    have all three equipped with /Kick/ and /Counter/, and you will
    probably finish most enemy parties in a single turn (taking little
    damage in the process). This doesn't help against magic attacks. 
    The level up bonus is 1 strength and 1 stamina.
Cover
    Cecil is the only character to have this ability. He will protect
    any character who would otherwise get a near-fatal attack. 
    The level up bonus is 1 stamina.
Cry
    This ability will reduce the defense of the enemy when used from the
    battle menu. You get this ability from Porom if you gave her at
    least one augment before she gets stoned (or broken). 
    The level up bonus is 1 spirit.
Curse
    This ability will reduce all the stats of all enemies when used from
    the battle menu. You can get it on the Mount Ordeals Crossing after
    fighting Scarmiglione. 
    The level up bonus is 5 HP, 1 strength, 1 stamina, and 1 spirit.
Darkness
    This ability will cause more damage at the cost of some HP. Cecil
    comes with it, and Edge can steal it from Odin. Put this on Kain to
    greatly increase the damage when paired with /Jump/. 
    The level up bonus is 10 HP, 1 strength, and 1 stamina.
Draw Attacks
    This ability causes all enemies to focus physical attacks on this
    character. Use it with /Counter/, and especially /Kick/ to cause
    serious damage. The other time you want to use this is if you have
    weak characters in your party, such as when Rydia and Edward first
    join your party. 
    You are given this ability by King Giott. 
    The level up bonus is 1 stamina.
Dualcast
    This ability allows a character to cast two magic spells (including
    summons) during one turn. You can get this ability if you give at
    least one ability to Palom or Porom, and at least two abilities to
    the other. 
    If you use this ability often, you probably want to use /Prayer/ or
    /Bless/ often, or be near some free healing source. 
    The level up bonus is 5 MP, 1 intelligence, and 1 spirit.
Eye Gouge
    This ability inflicts /Blind/ on enemies. You can get one augment
    from Namingway when he is in the Lali-ho Pub after he has become
    Puddingway. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Fast Talker
    This ability reduces the time it takes to cast magic spells. You get
    it from Tellah if you have given him at least two augments. 
    Give this to Rydia first, and then Rosa. If you like to use Edge's
    magic, you can give the last copy to him. 
    The level up bonus is 5 MP and 1 intelligence.
Focus
    When you use this ability during a battle, it will build up attack
    power for a future attack. Each time you focus, your next attack
    will cause more damage. You can focus up to three times, dealing
    about 2, 3, and 4 times the normal damage of an attack. 
    This ability is very handy when fighting a boss who counters
    physical attacks. By reducing the number of attacks, but increasing
    the damage of each attack, you can avoid the effects of the counter
    attacks. The other approach is to combine /Darkness/ and /Jump/ with
    Kain. 
    The level up bonus is 10 HP and 1 strength.
Gil Farmer
    This ability causes you to gain more money after each fight. You can
    get this ability from the membership-only club in Troia. The
    membership card to get in is very expensive (100,000 gil), so get
    this during your first time through the game so that the other two
    times are free. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Hide
    This ability removes the character from the battle, preventing them
    from encountering any damage after they are removed. They can
    receive damage before the ability is executed, however. 
    You can get this ability from Edward after the Dark Elf fight if you
    have given Edward at least two augments before boarding the boat at
    Fabul. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
HP +50%
    This ability increases the HP of a character by 50%, but not more
    than 999. 
    You get this ability from a soldier on the Castle Baron roof after
    finishing the Tower of Babil. 
    This ability only makes sense during the first time through the
    game, and maybe at the very start of subsequent times. If you have
    /Level Lust/ equipped and the Adamant/Onion equipment on, you won't
    really need this ability. 
    The level up bonus is 10 HP.
Inferno
    This ability allows a character to inflict serious fire damage. If
    you previously cast /Whirlwind/, you will do extra damage because
    that ability leaves the enemies weak against fire attacks. 
    You get this ability from the Eblan Cave after fighting Rubicante. 
    The level up bonus is 5 MP, 1 strength, 1 speed, and 1 stamina.
Item Lore
    This ability increases the effects of using an item, including using
    an equipped weapon, such as a elemental rod or a healing staff. 
    You can get this ability in Kaipo after defeating the Antlion. You
    probably want to wait until you get Porom and Palom in your party,
    and give it to one of them so you can get their abilities. They are
    so weak at the start, they will do more damage with an item instead
    of an attack. 
    The level up bonus is 1 intelligence.
Items
    Everyone has this ability, and they are required to have it in their
    battle menu. It allows you to use items during battles. I personally
    almost never use this, but there are others who like to use it. The
    choice is yours. 
    The level up bonus is 10 HP.
Jump
    Kain comes with this ability, and he is the only character who can
    use it. Kain spends a lot of time in the air, and then comes down
    with a very strong attack. If you combine this with /Darkness/, you
    can get even more damage. 
    The fact that Kain is in the air has advantages and disadvantages.
    The advantage is that he is hit less often. The disadvantage is that
    group cures seldom help him, and even if you target him
    specifically, there is a chance that he will be in the air, and your
    spell will be performed on somebody else. 
    The level up bonus is 10 HP, 1 strength, and 1 stamina.
Kick
    This causes the character to attack all enemies, rather than one
    enemy. The more enemies, the lesser the damage, but the total damage
    is more than what you would do to a single enemy. This is one of my
    favorite abilities, and I highly recommend it. I recommend that you
    replace the /Attack/ command with this command whenever it is
    available. 
    You can get this ability from Yang in the Syph Cave, provided you
    gave him at least one augment before entering the cannon room in the
    Tower of Babil. Give this ability to Cecil, Edge, and Kain (in that
    order.) 
    The only time you want to replace this ability with /Attack/ is for
    certain boss fights where you need to take out enemies in a certain
    order. During my third time through the game, I had this ability on
    Cecil, Edge, and Kain. I also had /Counter/ equipped. I routinely
    took out enemy parties using Auto-Battle, and even some of the boss
    fights, such as the Delta Sisters. By the second or third time
    through the game, you can ignore most of the strategies for boss
    fights, and just pound them into the ground. This is especially true
    if you are using the onion equipment. 
    The level up bonus is 1 strength.
Last Stand
    This ability will increase the defense of a character when their HP
    is low. Although that sounds good, in reality I never really used
    it. By using /Draw Attacks/ you can prevent weak characters from
    taking damage. In that case, it only makes sense to give it to Cecil
    (or whoever you have /Draw Attacks/ equipped on. Since you only have
    five slots (four, really, since you are stuck with /Item/), why
    waste a battle menu slot for something that you will seldom use? In
    other words, this is a great ability to give to someone else so that
    you can get their abilities. 
    You get this ability from Tellah if you gave him at least one augment. 
    The level up bonus is 10 HP, 1 strength, and 1 stamina.
Level Lust
    This is another great augment for the second and third time through
    the game. It causes the entire party to gain additional experience
    for battles. Obviously, you want to put this on Cecil during the
    first time through theh game and keep it until you have everyone at
    level 99. Equip it during subsequent run throughs, and your
    characters will level up quickly, which will reduce the amount of
    time you spend leveling up. 
    You can get three copies of this ability, but you only need the
    first one, since the entire party benefits when only one person has
    it equipped. So the second and third copies are good candidates for
    giving to characters in order to get their abillities. 
    You get this ability in the Hummingway Cave on the moon. 
    The level up bonus is 1 strength.
Limit Break
    This ability allows a character to exceed the damage limit of 9999.
    Give this ability to Kain first, and then to Rydia. Kain's /Jump/
    command often hits 9999 during the later parts of the game, and
    Rydia's /Summon/ commands can easily go over that limit. 
    You get this ability by completing the game, which means you can
    only get two copies (at the end of the first and second time.) 
    In addition to being very useful, it has a great level-up boost (10
    HP, 5 MP, plus 1 for all other stats.) Take advantage of this by
    equipping it when you are between levels 70 and 99, even if your
    attacks are not doing that much damage because you are using kick
    instead of attack. 
    The level up bonus is 10 HP, 5 MP, and 1 for all other stats.
MP +50%
    This allows a character's MP to be 150% of its normal value, up to a
    limit of 999. As with the corresponding HP ability, this is only
    useful during the fist time through the game. If you have /Level
    Lust/ equipped, their MP will go up significantly, and you will have
    less of a need for magic, since more of the fighters will be using
    /Kick/. I used this ability on Rydia so that she could summon Wht
    more often while I was leveling her up. 
    You can get this ability in Mist after you have been in the Underworld. 
    The level up bonus is 10 MP.
Ninjustu
    Edge is the only person who has this ability, which gives him access
    to Ninja magic. When playing the original game, I used this ability
    more often, but almost never used it for the remake version. It
    depends on your own personal fighting style. Since /Pray/ recovers
    HP and MP, you can actually use it more often during the remake. I'm
    not sure why I don't use it; maybe because it isn't needed that much. 
    The level up bonus is 5 MP and 1 intelligence.
Omnicasting
    This ability allows you to target all characters for spells that
    would normally target one. This is a great ability, since it allows
    Rosa to cast haste on the entire party with a single spell. 
    You can get this ability from Fusoya, if you gave him at least one
    augment before finishing the Tower of Babil. Give your first copy to
    Rosa. 
    The level up bonus is 5 MP, 1 intelligence, and 1 spirit.
Phoenix
    This is an interesting ability. If a character with this ability
    equipped dies in a battle, then any party members who have been
    killed off are resurrected, with their HP restored to the percentage
    of this character's MP. Give this to Kain. Since he is often in the
    air, he is frequently the last character to be killed off. And,
    since he can't use magic, he is pretty much guarenteed to have 100%
    of his MP, which means your entire party is revived to 100% of their
    HP. When this happens, revive Kain, restore his MP, and you are all
    set to continue. You could give the second copy to Edge. 
    You get this ability if you gave Fusoya at least two augments before
    defeating the CPU in the Tower of Babil. 
    The level up bonus is 2 spirit.
Pray
    Rosa is the only person who has this ability. In the original game,
    it would restore some HP. In the remake, it also restores some MP.
    It doesn't always work, but it usually does, and it doesn't take any
    MP. 
    I make this ability Rosa's Auto-Battle command. It helps keep the
    party at full health and full MP. After a battle, I might have Cecil
    heal the party, and Rosa will usually fill up his MP during the next
    battle. 
    The level up bonus is 1 spirit.
Reach
    This ability allows the character to do as much damage from the back
    row as from the front row. (Typically, attacking from the back row
    causes less damage.) This ability is useful for weak characters who
    use physical attacks, but you want to have them in the back row to
    lessen their damage. (Typically people in the front row take more
    damage than in the back row.) This ability is great for Edge,
    especially when he first joins the party. 
    You can get this ability in the Developer's Office behind the Lai-lo
    Pub. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Recall
    Using this ability might allow the character to use a random spell
    they have "forgotten." It doesn't work that often. The main use for
    this augment is to give it to a character so that you will get their
    augments. 
    You get this ability from Tellah. 
    The level up bonus is 5 MP and 1 intelligence.
Safe Travel
    Equipping this ability disables random battles. This can be very
    handy under numerous circumstances:

        * If you have taken serious damage, you can equip this and then
          move to the nearest save area.
        * You can open all the chests in a dungeon, avoiding all but
          enemy ambushes and boss fights, equip what you found, and the
          go through the dungeon.
        * If you are trying for rare items, or traveling through an area
          with very weak enemies, you can avoid minor battles that take
          up time. You can't avoid boss battles with this ability.

    You get this ability from Namingway after you got /????'s Love/ from
    him on the moon. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Salve
    This ability causes items to target your entire party with an item
    rather than a single character. It is the item equivalent of
    /Omnicasting/. 
    Since I don't tend to use items, I usually give this to somebody so
    I can get their augments later. If you use items, consider pairing
    it with /Item Lore/ and/or /Auto-Potion/. 
    You can get this from Edward if you gave him at least one augment
    before boarding the boat in Fabul. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Steal
    Only Edge has this ability. He might be able to steal an item from
    an enemy. He can steal at most one item. Some enemies can have one
    of several items stolen. If you also have /Treasure Hunter/ equipped
    by someone in the party, the chances of getting the rare items
    increases. 
    I often have this set as Edge's Auto-Battle command. Partly because
    you can sometimes get good items, but also because he seems to get
    better over time. I will often turn off auto-battle and have the
    other party members defend during the fight when I'm trying to steal
    something from a boss. Once the item is stolen, I can resume the
    normal battle strategy. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Summon
    Rydia is the only character with this ability. At the start of each
    game she has the same minimal summons. She will learn additional
    summons by defeating eidolons with your party. There are a few
    exceptions - some spells can be learned from dropped items. Those
    abilities carry over between games. 
    Summon magic is some of the most powerful spells in the game.
    Consider equipping Rydia with /Fast Talker/, and /Limit Break/ as
    well. If you are doing a lot of summons, you should also be doing
    /Bless/ and/or /Pray/. 
    The level up bonus is 5 MP, 1 intelligence, and 1 spirit.
Throw
    Edge is the only character that has this ability. It allows him to
    throw certain weapons, causing significant damage. The items thrown
    cannot be recovered. You mainly want to use this during the end of
    the game. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Treasure Hunter
    Having this ability equipped increases the probability of getting a
    rare item stolen or dropped. Actually, it increases the probably of
    any item being dropped, but it is most useful when trying for rare
    items. 
    You get this ability when you complete 100% of the maps. As soon as
    you get this, you should start trying for rare items, especially the
    adamant/onion equipment from rare tails. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Tsunami
    This ability allows the character to perform a high-damage water
    spell. Depending on your fighting style, use this for offense or to
    obtain additional augments. 
    You can get this ability from the Ancient Waterway after defeating
    Cagnazzo. 
    The level up bonus is 5 MP, 1 strength, 1 stamina, and 1 intelligence.
Twincast
    You get this ability from Palom and Porom. You actually get it from
    the Elder, but it was their spell. It takes two characters to cast
    this spell, and they both must have enough MP. Typically this takes
    a long time, so it isn't always that useful. 
    The level up bonus is 1 intelligence.
Upgrade
    This ability allows the character to use an item to cause elemental
    damage. 
    You can get this augment if you gave Cid at least one augment before
    entering the dwarven castle. 
    The level up bonus is 1 speed.
Whirlwind
    This ability allows the character to inflict a powerful wind-based
    attack on all enemies. It also leaves the enemies vulnerable to a
    fire-based attack. Whirlwind followed by Inferno makes a good
    one-two attack. 
    You can find this augment in the crystal room of the lodestone
    cavern after defeating Barbariccia. 
    The level up bonus is 5 MP, 1 speed, 1 intelligence, and 1 spirit.
White Magic
    Rosa comes with this ability. Cecil learns this after he becomes a
    Paladin. Rydia has it as a young girl, but loses it when she grows
    up. Tellah and Fusoya can use it as well. It allows the character to
    cast healing spells. Rosa can also cast /Holy/, which is a powerful
    offensive white spell. 
    The level up bonus is 5MP and 1 spirit.

Top <#top>


    [critical] Critical Points in the Game

Have you have ever been following a walkthrough, when something like
this happens: "Enter the next room", and so you enter the next room.
"But before you enter, ..." Oops! Now you tell me! Well, this section is
designed to eliminate those problems.

There are several places where you need to do something or you will miss
out on resources. These are usually just before a character leaves your
party for the final time. Before they leave, you want to unequip them
(especially if you have the adamant / onion equipment on them), and you
might want to make sure they are given however many augment abilities
they need for you to receive their augments. (You probably don't want
Edward's abilities the first time, but only the second and third times.)

As mentioned earlier, this document is not intended to be a complete
walk through. There are plenty of those out there, and the one I
recommend is by SBAllen on GameFAQS. That particular walkthrough is
pretty good at warning you about what is coming up (like when to unequip
characters when they will be leaving the party) but there are some
places where you still might mess up. This section covers each of these
critical points in the game, suggesting what you want to do at each point.

Start of the Game
    As soon as you leave Baron Castle, you should save your game. (You
    don't really want to go through the beginning again, do you?) What
    you do at this point depends on which pass through the game. 
    The first time through the game, spend some time leveling up your
    characters. You will be losing Kain shortly, so concentrate on
    Cecil. How long you spend doing this is a matter of taste. I tend to
    see how much experience I am getting, and then see how far before
    somebody levels up. I then calculate about how many battles that
    will take, and decide if I want to wait that long. You can use
    potions or stay at the Inn, whichever you prefer. 
    The second and third time through the game, put Adamant Armor and
    Onion equipment on Kain. Cecil can't wear any of that equipment
    until he becomes a Paladin, so you are stuck with what he has. Equip
    Cecil with /Kick/ as the default attack and as Auto-Battle. Also
    equip /Counter/, /Level Lust/, and /Gil Farmer/. It won't take long
    to get Cecil up to a decent level. You don't need to worry about
    Kain, his armor will protect him. The use of /Gil Farmer/ isn't
    necessary, since you probably won't be buying as much equipment as
    during the first time, so when you have enough money, equip /Draw
    Attacks/ instead. 
Before You Enter Mist
    Unequip Kain before you enter the town, especially if he has the
    Adamanite and Onion equipment. 
When You Get Rydia
    Rydia is very weak when you first get her, so set her /Auto-Battle/
    command to /Defend/ (or /Brace/ if she has it). If this is the first
    time through the game, save after each battle. Remember that you
    can't use the inn at Kaipo, so use potions or tents. 
    If this is not your first time, equip /Draw Attacks/ on Cecil to
    prevent Rydia from getting hit. 
Before Entering Kaipo
    You are going to get into a boss fight as soon as you enter, so make
    sure Cecil is at a good level. Save before you enter the town. If
    you lose the fight, reset the game, level up some more, and try
    again. This will only be an issue the first time through the game. 
When Rydia Joins
    Don't forget to find Rosa in the NE part of town. 
    If this is your first time, be careful of Rydia since she is very
    weak. Spend some time leveling her up. Equip her with /HP +50%/ if
    she has it. Save often, and run if you encounter a sand worm. 
    If this is not the first time, equip Rydia with adamant and onion
    armor. Don't bother leveling up until you get Tellah. Equip Tella
    with adamant armor and spend a little time leveling up. (Remember
    you are going to get Edward soon, and he is weaker yet. That is
    where you will do serious leveling up.) 
Damcyan Castle
    Unequip Tellah before entering the castle. You don't have to give
    him any augments just yet; he will join the party again later. 
    This is a great place to level up after you get Edward, since you
    can restore HP and MP for free in the castle. You can take the hover
    craft to either the Antlion cave or the entrance to Mount Hobs to
    level up faster, and then return to the castle and heal. 
Fabul
    Save before entering. If you lose the boss battle, reset the game
    and level up some more before trying it again. 
    Before you board the boat, unequip everyone except Cecil. 
    If this is your second or third time, consider giving Edward two
    augments so you can get /Salve/ and /Hide/. They aren't worth
    wasting any augments during your first run-through. (I recommend
    that you give Edward augments during the second pass, but you can
    wait until the third if you want.) 
Mysidia
    The first time through the game, make sure you buy the Paladin
    equipment. For the second and third times, you will be able to use
    the adamant and onion equipment. 
    Spend some time leveling up Palom and Porom before starting up Mount
    Ordeals. There is a Chocobo forest south of the entrance that has a
    white chocobo there. Let Porom heal the party when needed, and when
    she runs low on magic, talk to the white chocobo to refresh her MP. 
    Once Cecil becomes a Paladin, save your game and stay in the area
    until he gains several levels. When you think he can make it down
    the mountain, consider spending some time near the chocobo forest to
    level up some more. If you have /Safe Travel/, you can use that to
    come down the mountain safely, and then level up near the chocobo
    forest, but I would still recommend you fight a few times on the
    mountain before doing that. 
Baron Castle
    After you fight Baigan, go back and save. Before you enter the
    throne room, unequip Palom and Porom, even though you have a boss
    fight coming up. Also make sure you have given them a total of three
    augments - one augment to one of them and two augments to the other.
    (It doesn't matter who got one or two augments.) 
    Go back to the Ancient Waterway and get /Tsunami/
Troia
    Make sure you talk to Edward before you leave to fight the Dark Elf.
    If you don't, you will die. Also make sure you take off metalic
    armor. If you are on your second or third time, the onion equipment
    is not made of metal, so it works perfectly fine. (I think that
    adamant armor is metal, so equip the onion armor. If you don't have
    onion armor, you might try adamant armor.) 
Tower of Zot
    Remember that you can only go through this dungeon once per game.
    Make sure that you complete all the maps during your first play
    through of the game. If you care about the Beastiary, make sure you
    fight all available enemies. 
    Before entering the locked room, unequip Tellah and make sure you
    have given him at least two augments so you can get his later. 
Agart
    Once you enter the underground, you will be there for a while. Make
    sure you finish any business you might have before going in. 
Dwarven Castle
    Make sure you unequip Cid before entering the castle. If this is
    your second time through, you should give him at least two augments.
    Also make sure that Cecil and/or Rosa can cast /Libra/ (white magic)
    before entering. This will be important when fighting Golbez. 
    Find the pot near the western entrance to the castle, where you can
    get free HP/MP restoration. As you can guess, this is a great place
    for leveling up. 
    Rydia's whip not only does reasonable damage, there is a decent
    chance the enemy will be stopped, which makes the rest of the fight
    trivial. 
Tower of Babil
    Another dungeon you can only go through once per game. The first
    time through the game, make sure you map out everything before you
    enter the cannon room. If you care about the bestiary, keep track of
    who you have fought. 
    Unequip Yang before you enter the canon room. Also make sure you
    have given him at least one augment during your first time through
    the game. This will allow you to get /Kick/, which is an augment you
    don't want to miss. 
Underground Side Quests
    Don't miss out on side quests, which will let Rydia gain some really
    good summons, and allow you to get some additional augments. 
    *Sylph Cave* ? make sure you visit Yang. 
    *Passage of the Eidolons* ? visit Wht's home, and fight /Asura/ and
    /Leviathan/. 
Sealed Cave
    Make sure you save your game before entering the crystal room during
    your first time through the game. The Demon Wall can be tricky, and
    might take you several tries. During the second and third times
    through, it is much easier. 
    On the way out, unequip Kain when you are near the entrance. 
Overworld Side Quests
    There are a number of side quests you can do at this point, some of
    which require a follow-up underground. 
    Talk to Yang's wife in Fabul, then visit Yang again in the Sylph
    Cave, then tell his wife what happened. 
    Get /Inferno/ from the Eblan Cave. 
    Give the rat tail to the collector and get adamantite, then take it
    down to Kokol so you can get the Excalibar. 
    Visit Troia, buy the membership card in the pub, and get the /Gil
    Farmer/ augment. 
    Go to the Lodestone Cavern and get /Whirlwind/ from the crystal room.
    Visit the king in his chambers at Baron Castle after you have
    visited the Passage of the Eidolons so Rydia can learn /Odin/ and
    Edge can steal /Darkness/. 
Mysidia
    Make sure you finish any outstanding business before you go to the
    moon. You will not be able to do anything on the earth until you
    finish the Giant of Babil. 
Moon
    There are a number of things to do on the moon: 
    *HummingwayAbode* ? get /Level Lust/. 
    *Crystal Palace* ? pick up Fusoya before you try to beat Bahamut. 
    *Lair of the Father* ? this dungeon and Bahamut are tough. Get in
    the habit of teleporting out of the dungeon, healing in the Lunar
    Whale, saving your game, and go back in the dungeon. You might
    consider using /Safe Travel/ to cut down on fights. If you get
    killed off by the Behemoth or Bahamut, level up some more. 
Giant of Babil
    If you examine the crystal in the Lunar Whale, a series of cut
    scenes will end you up in the Giant of Babil. This is another
    one-time dungeon: if you miss anything, you can't go back and do it
    once you beat the boss. 
    After you finish the four elementals, go back and save your game.
    Before you proceed beyond where that battle took place, unequip Fusoya. 
    Once you get your final party assembled, take time to set up
    abilities, equipment, etc. 
Finish up the Earth Side Quests

        * Get Excalibur if you haven't gotten it yet
        * Get /Piercing Armor/ from Wht's house
        * Get /HP +50%/ from Baron Castle

Lunar Subterrane
    If this is your first time, when you get to the bottom of this
    dungeon, you should have completed all the maps and get /Treasure
    Hunter/. When this happens, start working on your tails and rainbow
    pudding. You might consider using /Safe Travel/ to map out the
    dungeon without having to worry about the more difficult enemies at
    this time. Once you have adamant armor and onion equipment, they
    will be much easier to take on. 
    You can start at the bottom save area of the Lunear Subterrain to
    get the red and pink tails. Then move to other locations and collect
    all of the items. 
    I strongly recommend that during your first time through the game,
    you take the time to get a complete set of Adamant and Onion
    equipment by stealing complete sets of all the tails. Yes, I know it
    is a pain, but it will make life so much easier not only at the end
    of the first game, but all through the second and third times
    through the game. See the Items <#items> section for suggestions on
    how to do this easier. 
    Make sure you have Edge steal *Dark Matter* from Zeromus. 

Top <#top>


    [items] Obtaining Rare Items

There are several rare items that will carry over to the next game. Most
of them are gotten by fighting dragons (the pink tail you get by
fighting the flan princess.) The easiest / quickest way to do this is to
use Sirens, which will immediately start a fight with some monster,
depending on where you use it. Make sure you equip /Treasure Hunter/ to
double your chances of getting rare items. (Unfortunately this is still
very rare - about 4%).

Gold and Silver Apples
    These items increase the maximum HP of a character. Gold apples
    increase it by 100, while silver apples increase it by 50. Gold
    apples are very rare, but you will probably find quite a few silver
    apples while trying to get rare tails. 
    Gold apples are hard to come by. There is a slight chance that the
    gold dragon might drop one, but there is no sure way of getting
    them. Silver apples, on the other hand, are much easier. While
    trying for tails, the dragons dropped silver apples more often than
    tails. I ended up with 90 silver apples, and then didn't worry about
    getting any after that. 
Soma Drops
    These items will increase the maximum MP of a character by 10.
    Fortunately, several augment abilities will increase MP while
    leveling up between levels 70 and 99. I had no problems maxing out
    MP on most characters without using soma drops. 
    Dark Sages have a slim chance of dropping a soma drop. 
Rare Tails
    As with the original game, you can exchange a rat's tail for adamant
    ore. With the remake, you can exchange other tails for special
    equipment that carries over to the next game. Since the tail drops
    are so rare, and the dragon encounters are also rare, the best way
    is to use a siren to initiate a fight in a place where you will
    probably end up fighting a dragon. Since sirens are expensive, you
    probably want to reset the game if you don't find a tail within some
    number of battles. How many is up to you, but I typically reset the
    game after 10-15 battles (5-10 when I started running out of money).

    Red Tail
        Dropped by Red Dragons
        From the bottom save in the Lundar Subterrane, go down one floor
        and use a siren. Reset your game if you don't get a tail by some
        number of fights. 
        Exchange for an Onion Sword. You only need two of these (Cecil
        and Kain)
    Pink Tail
        Dropped by the Flan Princesses
        From the bottom save in the Lunar Subterrane, go up two levels,
        and enter the room right next to the stairs. Make sure that
        Cecil has the crystal mail equipped, since it will prevent him
        becoming beserk. Cecil should have white magic equipped. When
        the rainbow flans cast beserk, have Cecil use /esuna/ on Rosa.
        Have Cecil kick and Rosa /pray/ until the fight is over. 
        Exchange for Adamant Armor
        This is the best armor in the game, and the hardest to get. All
        five party members can wear this, and many of the temporary
        party members can wear this as well. (In fact, some of the
        temporary characters can only wear adamant armor, not the onion
        equipment.) You can take time to collect these now, or spend the
        next couple games levelling up charactes when they join. 
    Blue Tail
        Dropped by Thunder Dragons
        Enter Passage of the Eidolons and go down one floor, then use a
        siren. Reset your game if you don't get a tail after some number
        of fights. 
        Exchange for an Onion Shield. You only need two of these (Cecil
        and Kain).
    Green Tail
        Dropped by Green Dragons
        Stand outside the entrance for the Sealed Cave and use a siren.
        Reset your game if you don't get a tail after some number of
        fights. 
        Exchange for an Onion Helm. Collect all five of these.
    Yellow Tail
        Dropped by Yellow Dragons
        Take a step inside the Path of the Eidolons and use a siren.
        Reset your game if you don't get a tail after some number of
        fights. 
        Exchanged for Onion Gloves. Collect all five of these.
    Black Tail
        Dropped by Armored Fiends
        Enter Lair of the Father and go down one level, then use a
        siren. Reset your game if you don't get a tail after some number
        of fights. 
        Exchange for Onion Armor. Collect all five of these, even if you
        have the adamant armor. They are a life saver in the lodestone
        cavern when you are after the Dark Elf. 

Summoning Items
    These items allow Rydia to learn new summoning spells. You only need
    to get these items once, and it isn't worth using sirens. Just
    wander around getting into random encounters until the item is dropped.

    Bomb
        Dropped by Balloons and Dark Grenades
    Cockatrice
        Dropped by Cockatrices, Helldivers, and Fledgling Ruks
    Goblin
        Dropped by Goblins and Lil Murders
    Mindflayer
        Dropped by Mindflayers

Dark Matter
    You can steal this from Zeromus during the final battle.
    It allows you to summon one of the optional bosses.

Top <#top>


    [first] First Time Through the Game

The first time through the game will be the hardest, and take the
longest. Like many Final Fantasy titles, if you take your time and don't
rush through the game, taking all the side quests, you should have no
problems getting through the game. By collecting items that will carry
over, you can make the remaining times through the game much easier.

There are plenty of walkthroughs available that will help you get
through the game the first time. This FAQ concentrates on subsequent
times through the game. Having said that, here are some suggestions on
things to do during your first pass that will help you during subsequent
times through the game.

Use Augment Abilities
    The augment abilities provide some great features, so take advantage
    of them. The walkthrough by SBAllen makes suggestions on what items
    to give to what characters and when. During subsequent walkthoughs,
    you can use a second and third copy of the item to other characters. 
    You can make fights easier by equipping Cecil with the /Kick/ as the
    top ability, along with /Draw Attacks/ and /Counter/ abilities. What
    this does is cause all physical attacks to be made against Cecil.
    Since he has /Counter/ equipped, he will perform the default (first)
    attack, which is /Kick/. This means that every time any enemy
    performs a single attack, Cecil will attack all enemies in return.
    (This doesn't work with magic attacks.) 
    Have Rosa /Pray/ for /Auto-Battle/, and have it available on her
    battle menu as well. For the remake, /Pray/ not only gives HP to all
    party members, but it also gives them MP as well. 
Complete all maps
    Make sure you complete all of the maps so that you can get the
    /Treasure Hunter/ ability during the first time through the game.
    This will make it easier to collect rare items. Once you have
    completed all the maps, you can work on collecting tails to get a
    complete set of onion/adamant equipment. 
    Be especially careful while in one-time dungeons because once you
    have leave the dungeon, you will not be able to go back and finish
    anything you might have missed. 
Collect complete sets of Onion/Adamant Armor
    Get enough tails so that you can trade them in for a complete set of
    armor for your final party. Make sure you get five sets of Adamant
    Armor, since most (if not all) of the people who will be in your
    party during the course of the game will be able to wear Adamant Armor. 
Don't use apples and drops
    Don't use any of the gold or silver apples, or any of the soma drops
    during the first time through the game. The only exception would be
    if you got over 90 silver apples while trying for rare tails. Rather
    than losing them, use any that you gain over 90 to beef up your
    weakest characters. 

Once you have the /Treasure Hunter/ ability, you want to collect tails
so that you can build your armor collection for not only the end of the
game, but for the next two times through the game. The easiest way to do
this is to buy as many sirens as you can afford. What you are going to
do is use sirens to fight the enemy that drops whatever tail you are
looking for. Decide how many sirens you are willing to lose while
looking for the tail. (I usually picked 5-15 sirens, depending on how
rich I felt or frustrated I was.) If you don't get a tail after too many
attempts, then reset the game and start over. Sirens are too expensive
to just burn through them. If you run low on funds, wander around the
moon getting into random battles to make money, probably under the lunar
surface. Many of the dragons actually drop silver apples more often than
they do tails. What I would often do was save after a silver apple as
well as a tail. I eventually stopped this when I had over 90 silver
apples. If you want detailed steps, here they are:

    * Save the game near where the appropriate enemy can be found.
    * Calculate at what number of sirens you will reset the game.
    * Equip /Safe Travel/
    * Go to where the enemy can be found
    * Use a siren and fight the enemy
    * If you get a tail, go back outside (if needed), save, recalculate
      your siren limit, and then return to where you were
    * If you did not get a tail, look at how many sirens you have left.
    * If you haven't reached your lower limit on sirens, use another one.
    * If you have less than whatever limit you set for sirens, restart
      the game

This will take a long time, and I can understand how some of you might
not want to spend all this time. Just remember that the more of the
final equipment you have, the easier the next time through the game will
be. What I often did was play the game while I was doing something else.
I would use a siren with auto-battle turned on, and then put the game
down. While doing whatever else I was doing, I would check the game
every so often. If it was over, I would either save if I got a tail, use
another siren, or reset the game if I had used too many sirens.

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    [second] Second Time Through the Game

This should be the easiest time through the game, requiring almost no
extra time leveling up. Assuming you got the adamant / onion equipment
during your first pass, you can equip all of your characters with this
equipment (at least the adamant armor can be worn by virtually all
characters.) The big exception is Cecil when he is a dark knight at the
very start of the game. There will be only two times when you will need
to level up will be for Cecil - at the very beginning of the game, and
when he becomes a paladin. In both cases, if you have /Level Lust/
equipped, it will go much faster than it did during the first game.

From the start, equip Cecil with /Kick/ instead of /Attack/, and also
equip /Counter/, /Level Lust/ and /Gill Farmer/. Set his Auto-Battle
command to /Kick/. This will cause your party to gain levels and earn
cash quickly. It will also cause Cecil to attack everyone any time he
gets hit. If you don't take everybody out after one kick, you will
probably take them out during the second one.

While Cecil is a dark knight, he can't wear onion or adamant armor; you
will have to wait until he becomes a palidan. However, all of the other
party members will be able to at least wear the adamant armor, and
sometimes other things. Obviously, anyone who will be in the final party
can wear them, but many (if not all) of the other characters can take
advantage of them as well. Just make sure you unequip them before they
leave the party.

At the very start of the game, equip Kain with Adamant Armor, and the
Onion equipment, including the Onion Sword. (Make sure you unequip him
before you enter Mist.) You are stuck with Cecil's default equipment
since he can't wear any of the onion or adamant equipment, but by Cecil
kicking instead of attacking, you should be able to have short battles.

When you get Rydia, spend a little time leveling her up. Set her
auto-battle to defend. With /Level Lust/ on Cecil, it shouldn't take too
long. You should also equip /Draw Attacks/ on Cecil so that Rydia
doesn't get attacked. (Use this same trick whenever you get a new
character with low levels.) Get Tellah and spend some more time leveling
him up. Equip Tellah with the healing staff and set Tellah's auto-battle
to the item "Healing Staff". This will perform a heal similar to
/Prayer/ during these battles (without restoring MP). Don't spend a lot
of time on these two characters, since you are going to get Edward soon.
As soon as you can get through the battles, get to Damcyan to get
Edward. Once you have Edward, take more time to level your party up.
Since you can get free healing at the Damcyan castle, this is your best
chance to level up.

Once you get Yang, you now have some serious attack power. With both
Cecil and Yang performing /Kick/ attacks, and adamant/onion equipment on
everyone, you should make short work of most enemies. If you are having
some problems on Mount Hobbs, go back to near Damcyan and level up some
more. Of course, make sure you remove all their equipment before
boarding the ship.

Palom and Polom can use the onion equipment, so they will fair pretty
well. Don't bother buying the Paladin equipment, since Cecil will be
able to wear the adamant and onion equipment once he is a Paladin. Equip
them with the fire rod and healing staff, and set their auto-battle
command to those items. Since you need to give them each one augment,
and one of them a second one, consider giving one of them the /Item
Lore/ ability, which will increase the attack or heal. Spend time near
the chocobo forest leveling up. You can use magic to heal your party
after battles. When you run low on magic, talk to the white chocobo.

Once Cecil becomes a Paladin, equip the adamant armor and other onion
equipment. It will only take a few battles to gain a fair number of
levels, so stay near the save area until you think you can get down the
mountain. Again, with the good equipment, you shouldn't have too much
trouble. When you get down off the mountain, spend some time near the
chocobo forest leveling Cecil up. (As you can tell, I like to level up
for free. ;^) By the time you have Cecil levelled up, you should have no
problems with the rest of the game.

There is no need to try to max out your stats during this time through
the game. Save that for the third time.

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    [third] Third Time Through the Game

This is your last chance through the game. This is when you want to max
out your statistics <#max>, use up the apples and drops you have been
accumulating, and try out those optional bosses.

You will start the game the same was as you started the second time,
except that you will be able to distribute more abilities to your party,
which will make it even easier. Imagine having Cecil, Edge, and Kain all
using /Kick/ and /Counter/. The battles will be incredibly short!

Once you get your final party for the last time, you can concentrate on
maxing our your stats. When they get to level 70, equip abilities on
them so that their stats will max out by the time they reach level 99.
Put on the final equipment to see how much they need to level up. Once
every character has been maxed out, it is time to put on their real
abilities and go after the optional bosses. These bosses are what will
make the third time different than the second.

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    [max] Maximizing Stats

Between levels 1 and 70, each character increases according to a
predefined pattern. Nothing can be done to affect the stats for an
individual other than using apples and drops to increase HP/MP, using
the HP/MP + 50% ability, or using equipment to temporarily increase stats.

Between levels 70 and 99, however, each character increases their stats
according to what abilities they have equipped. Each ability has a
predefined set of stats bonuses, which are cummulative. If two abilities
each increase a given stat by 1, and both are equipped by a character,
that stat will increase by 2. The walkthrough by SBAllen provides a
detailed method of maximizing the stats of your final party, although
there is an easier way to do the same thing.

Remember that your final party will be equipped with Adamant armor and
Onion equipment. These items increase the stats of your characters.
Since all stats max out at 99, you don't need to have all stats at 99,
but rather at the difference between their stats with the armor on and
99. Check the stats at level 70 to determine what needs to be increased
to max out their stats by level 99. For example, if a stat is 70 with
their armor on at level 70, then they only need to increase that stat by
1 each time to reach 99. If, however, another stat is 45, then that stat
needs to be increased by 2 each time the character levels up.

You can rearrange your abilities as a character maxes out some of their
stats. For example, once a character has a strength of 99, then there is
no reason to keep any ability that increases strength, unless it also
increases another stat that still needs increasing. Once the character
is all maxed out, then you should equip whatever abilities match your
fighting style.

The stats bonuses for abilities can be found at
http://ff4.wikidot.com/stats-increase, which is available under the
Creative Commons License. The table below is adapted from that web site:

Augment 	HP 	MP 	Str 	Spd 	Sta 	Int 	Spi
????'s Love
Increase strength based on Wht summons 	10 	5 	1 	1 	1 	1 	1
Adrenaline
Double attack when HP is low 	  	  	1 	  	  	  	 
Aim
Seldom miss with bow (Rosa only) 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Analyze
Learn stats of enemy 	  	  	  	  	  	1 	 
Attack
Normal fight command 	10 	  	1 	  	  	  	 
Auto-Potion
Automatically use potions when damaged 	10 	  	  	  	1 	  	 
Bardsong
Sing songs that affect party or enemies 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Black Magic
Attack magic (no augment) 	  	5 	  	  	  	1 	 
Bless
Gradually replenish MP of party 	  	  	  	  	  	  	1
Bluff
Doubles intelligence 	  	  	  	  	  	1 	 
Brace
Stronger form of defense 	10 	  	  	  	1 	  	 
Augment 	HP 	MP 	Str 	Spd 	Sta 	Int 	Spi
Counter
Counter-attack when physically attacked 	  	  	1 	  	1 	  	 
Cover
Protect weak party members 	  	  	  	  	1 	  	 
Cry
Decrease defense of enemy 	  	  	  	  	  	  	1
Curse
Reduce stats of all enemies 	  	5 	1 	  	1 	  	1
Darkness
Lose HP to increase damage 	10 	  	1 	  	1 	  	 
Draw Attacks
Takes all physical attacks 	  	  	  	  	1 	  	 
Dualcast
Cast twice in one turn 	  	5 	  	  	  	1 	1
Eye Gouge
Blinds all enemies 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Fast Talker
Reduce time to cast spells (including summons) 	  	5 	  	  	  	1 	 
Focus
Increase attack power (up to three times before attack) 	10 	 
2 	  	  	  	 
Gil Farmer
Increase money earned 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Augment 	HP 	MP 	Str 	Spd 	Sta 	Int 	Spi
Hide
Removes character from battle 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
HP +50%
Increase HP of character by 50% (but not more than 999) 	10 	 
  	  	  	  	 
Inferno
Attack all enemies with strong fire attack. 	  	5 	1 	1 	1 	  	 
Item Lore
Increase the effect of items in battle. 	  	  	  	  	  	1 	 
Items
Use items (required battle command) 	10 	  	  	  	  	  	 
Jump
Attack from air with higher damage (but slower) 	10 	  	1 	  	1 	  	 
Kick
Attack all enemies 	  	  	1 	  	  	  	 
Last Stand
Defense of character increases when HP is low. 	10 	  	1 	  	1 	  	 
Level Lust
Increase amount of experience gained. 	  	  	1 	  	  	  	 
Limit Break
Remove 9999 damage limit. 	10 	5 	1 	1 	1 	1 	1
MP +50%
Increase MP of character by 50% (but not more than 999) 	  	10
  	  	  	  	 
Augment 	HP 	MP 	Str 	Spd 	Sta 	Int 	Spi
Ninjustu
Ability to use ninja magic (Edge only) 	  	5 	  	  	  	1 	 
Omnicasting
Ability to target all with spells that normally only target one.
  	5 	  	  	  	1 	1
Phoenix
When this character dies, any characters already dead are
revived. 	  	  	  	  	  	  	2
Pray
Usually replenishes HP and MP (Rosa only) 	  	  	  	  	  	  	1
Reach
Same damage from rear row than front row. 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Recall
Possibly remember forgotten spell. 	  	5 	  	  	  	1 	 
Safe Travel
Eliminate random encounters. 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Salve
Use items on entire party. 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Steal
Sometimes steals item from enemy. 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Augment 	HP 	MP 	Str 	Spd 	Sta 	Int 	Spi
Summon
Call eidolons during battle. 	  	5 	  	  	  	1 	1
Throw
Ability to throw items at enemy. (Edge only) 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Treasure Hunter
Increases chance to obtain rare items. 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Tsunami
Attack all enemies with strong water damage. 	  	5 	1 	  	1 	1 	 
Twincast
Perform powerful combined attack with another character. 	  	 
  	  	  	1 	 
Upgrade
Use items to change elemental damage of weapons. 	  	  	  	1 	  	  	 
Whirlwind
Inflict wind-based damage on all enemies.
Leaves enemies weak against fire 	  	5 	  	1 	  	1 	1
White Magic
Perform cure-based magic (no augment) 	  	5 	  	  	  	  	1
Augment 	HP 	MP 	Str 	Spd 	Sta 	Int 	Spi

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    [boss] Optional Bosses

I suggest that you take these folks on the third time through the game.
You can only fight one of them if you have stolen dark matter from
Zeromus, so you can't do it the first time through the game. These
bosses become available for the second and third time through the game.
If you beat them during the second time, I'm not sure why you would want
to play it a third time. Remember, you will have additional augments
available during the third time, which would make it easier to win.

Max out all your characters and stock up on your favorite items. Make
sure you have the best armor on, and take time to think about what
abilities you want equipped. You probably want one or two characters to
have Phoenix equipped.

Here are the optional bosses and how you can fight them:

Geryon
    You have two choices for fighting this boss: either on Mount
    Ordeals, or where you fought the four elementals in the Giant of
    Babil. Hit the *A* button at either locations to start the fight. 
    If you have complete sets of the adamant / onion equipment for all
    characters, most of his attacks will do little if anything. (I told
    you it was worth getting those items, didn't I? ;^) 
    Geryon will use gas attacks, so having ribbons and/or onion
    equipment will help somewhat. You might also think about using
    cursed rings to nullify parts of the attack. Elemental attacks heal
    him, so be careful what you equip, and what spells you use. I
    suggest you fight this boss on Mount Ordeals, since you can save the
    game, walk a few steps and try to beat him. If you fail, reload the
    game, adjust your equipment and/or strategy, and try again. 
    This is the easier of the two optional bosses. As long as you have
    adamant / onion equipment, you should be able to beat him without
    maxing out your characters. In fact, since you get about 100K gil
    and 160K experience, this is a great way to level up and make money
    at the same time. You can fight this boss as often as you want. 
    Cast Cry and Bless at the start. Haste the party and slow Geryon.
    Once that is done, have Cecil and Edge hit, Kain jump, Rydia summon
    Bahamut, and Rosa pray. Between Bless and Pray, Rydia will only lose
    a few MP each time she summons. I actually had her hit with her whip
    and she did about the same damage as Edge, so if she gets low on MP,
    just have her hit and have Rosa pray to recover MP. If their HP gets
    low (like after Maelstrom), I had Rosa cast Curaja on all, and then
    Holy on Geryon (I had Dualcast on, which is why I needed the second
    cast.) I could beat him consistently with their stats maxed out, but
    with HP less than 5000. I suspect you could beat him without being
    maxed out, so if you need to level up and/or make lots of money,
    give it a try. The most it will cost you is a trip up Mount Ordeals. 
Proto-Babil
    You might have noticed something different about the moon than
    previous versions of the game: there is a face on the surface. It is
    near the upper central section of the moon. Hit the *A* button when
    you are looking at the man on the moon, then select /Dark Matter/. 
    Save your game before you start the fight, and expect to reset the
    game a few times. Unlike Geryon, Proto-Babil will kill off
    characters with a single hit for 9999, so make sure you have Phoenix
    equipped and hope for the best. I'm not sure if the secret is
    strategy or luck. 

Top <#top>


    [thanks] Thanks and Credits

Top <#top>

Thanks to the following people

    * Square Software and Square Enix - for a great game
    * SBAllen - for a great walkthrough
    * http://ff4.wikidot.com/stats-increase for stats bonuses
    * Matthew A. Rivera - for feedback about Game Plus
    * frank pirrotta - for stating that adamite is not metalic
    * Aaron - for catching Edward instead of Edge stealing dark matter

Top <#top>


    [version] Version History

16 Oct 2010 - Version 1.4
    Fixed typos 
22 Dec 2009 - Version 1.3
    Clarified what "Game Plus" means for this game. 
    General clean up and copy edit. 
19 Sep 2010 - Version 1.3
    Mentioned that adamite might not be metalic.
5 May 2009 - Version 1.2
    Added contact information
26 Oct 2008 - Version 1.1
    Added bonus stats to abilities section.
    Added more detail.
17 Oct 2008 - Version 1.0
    Added reasonable content for all sections.
Oct 2008 - Version 0.1
    Initial version

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