The Final Fantasy V Advance Walkthrough and Battle Tactics Guide
Version 1.3
Djibriel, October 2010

"The first system, dealt with, is known as the Godai or 'Five Great Elemental
  Manifestations.' The elemental codes, in ascending order are...

...chi "earth"...
      ...sui "water"...
            ...ka "fire"...
                  ...fu "wind", and...
                        ...ku the "void"... "

- unknown source

Contents

No number: Contents
           Foreword

 1.0     Version History
 2.0     Introduction
 3.0     Set-up of the document, and slang you're going to start recognizing
 4.0     Walkthrough
 5.0     Menus and Game Options: As boring as a concrete floor in math class
 6.0     Jobs
 7.0     Action Abilities
 8.0     Game mechanics; real quick, I promise
 9.0     iOS/Android Release additions and notes
10.0     Characters
11.0     Checklists for you Completionists
12.0     Credits

No number: Disclaimer

**********************************
 1.0     Version History
**********************************

- Version 1.3   (28/04/2014)
      Still going strong in this fine new year! The year 2014 saw the release
      of Final Fantasy V for iOS and Android devices with updated graphics and 
      slightly modified content. I have chosen to list all the changes in a 
      handy chapter and keep the text of the walkthrough itself focused on the 
      GBA game with the exception of some iOS/Android bits and pieces scattered
      throughout the document. I think this document can be used by both GBA
      players, who can easily skip the iOS bits, and iOS/Android players who
      will easily be able to identify what's different for them.

      An important caveat here is the following. The Super Famicom and GBA games
      were, while I was writing this document, always well-documented. Their
      battle mechanics were laid bare. The new release however, changed some
      things around, nobody so far has bothered to crack it open and I'm not
      going to do it. This means that any iOS bits and pieces are derived from
      playtesting only, an inferior method of gaining knowledge. This means that
      the knowledge may be incomplete or wrong, I can only say I did my best to
      check all the findings several times.

      Further alterations include:
      - Fixed some minor things in information behemoth 4.41.3
      - Changed two instances of "Killer Cannon" into "Chaos Cannon" in section
        4.57.1. Give instant-death explosions misleading names, why don't you.
      - I added a Monk/counter strategy to the Liquid Flame entry.
      - Added Attack and Multiplier information for (Strong) Attack monsters in
        section 7.10 (!Release)
      - Changed 'Specialty' to 'Special Technique' and 'Strong Fight' to 
        '(Strong) Attack', to better fit with the nomenclature used in-game.
      - Fixed some helm/helmet errors.    
      - Did a few runs where I tried to never die with any character. This helps
        bring into focus exactly what is useful to such a game and what is not,
        and what dungeons and encounters are particulary dangerous. The 
        resulting tips and tricks I've acquired have made their way into this 
        document. 
      - Added a few notes on running from certain battles where it is either
        impossible or all but impossible for those without !Flee, !Smoke or
        Teleport spells. 
      - Added a stat block for Vilia, the flower girl. 
      - Quelb's special dish involves the slaughter of sheep. 

- Version 1.2   (10/13/2011)
      In this exciting new though minor update, I made everything better! Here
      is how:
      - The boss strategy section on Leviathan was greatly expanded
      - Some info was added on Gilgamesh' character entry, since he became
        a playable character in Dissidia Duodecim
      - The Quicksave trick versus the Gil Turtle had a fatal flaw in it, and
        was subsequently removed since it doesn't work.
      - Rewrote the Dancer section since I took a longer look at the class and
        its options throughout the game.
      - Major breakthrough added in the Surgate Castle Sciences; the Inn
        is not usable as soon as you gain acces to Exdeath's Castle! This
        info was added for all of those people that like to sleep in dead
        king's guest chambers. You can stop e-mailing me about it already.
      - A few minor things: Regen works on the Undead, you can steal twice
        from Carbuncle, Berserk trumps "Entranced!", and some added info here
        and there about how special weapon properties interact with special
        attacks that work with those weapons such as !Mug, !Jump, etc.
        The write-up for !Bladeblitz and !Finisher were also expanded, and
        an imperfection in section 10.1 was corrected; Drakenvale is easily
        entered at the end of the game, so all monsters there are still
        to be found had you missed them earlier.

- Version 1.1   (06/15/2011)
      Everything that has a beginning, has an end. But everything that has a
      beginning also has an 1.1 update, and this is that update. Typos were
      fixed, and a superior lay-out for all walkthrough chapter headers were
      adapted. Some thing worthy of special notice:
      - A list of sailing encounters on the First World was added in chapter
        4.15.1
      - The hit routine of the Dark Arts' status ailment side-effect was
        discovered and consequently added (credits go to Deathlike2)
      - A mistake in the Minotaur strategy was fixed where I mentioned that the
        Counter support ability was disabled for the fight, while it is not.
      - Several creatures have physical attacks that you cannot Counter (and
        have some other zany behavior); this information has been added.
      - The Treasure Checklist in Section 10.3 now contains the treasures of
        the GBA-only content, completely mapping out Mr. Clio's monitored
        container contents.
      - Some shameful oversights in the sections about Omega Mk. II and Neo
        Shinryu were fixed. I won't say what they were.

- Version 1.0  (02/24/2011)
      Added the final three chapters detailing Omega Mk. II, Neo Shinryu and
      the Cloister of the Dead. The guide is done! At last I'm free! This is the
      first version to appear on GameFAQs.

- Version 0.95  (12/08/2010)
      Added Overworld encounters for the first few chapters of the game, added
      section 10.4, rewrote a few sections, added content on the Sealed Temple,
      Necromancer Job and abilities, littered the guide with 'funny' Scott
      Pilgrim lines, you know the drill.

- Version 0.9  (09/10/2010)
      Initial Release on the Collapse of Heaven and Earth, this is the document
      as it first appeared for the masses.

**********************************
 2.0     Introduction
**********************************

On the morning of April Fools' Day, 2005, I woke up in a sexual addiction
treatment center in a suburb of Philadelphia. Nah, I'm playin'. That never
happened to me.

This, oh reader, is a walkthrough for FFVA, and by that is understood the game
'Final Fantasy V Advance', not for instance the 'Florida Fruit & Vegetable
Association', who likely rued the day they opted for that specific
abbreviation.

You know, for a long long time, FF V was the black sheep of the series. Not that
hard to understand; though it was released in Japan as soon as December 1992 and
the ROM was distributed around that time as well (egads, both the internet and
emulation are older than you think!), people didn't know how to read moonspeak.
And even after its very first fan translation surfaced as early as 1997, written
at the time by individuals known as Shadow and David Timko, this was three years
after FF V's successor was released and the internet was still a relatively
desolate place. A tumbleweed rolls by.

The Great West first got its official look at FF V in the form of Final Fantasy
Anthology. 'Dis be 'round 1999. The PSX port was a horror to behold. A lot of
criticism concerning the translation roared quite justifiably, the load times
were bad, bugs weren't fixed, low music quality. Faris talked like a porn
actress pretending to be a pirate mocking her own background. The masses cried
in unison. A baby in the back burps in disapproval.

The official release never reached the West because it was deemed too
difficult. FF V never profited all that much from the emulation scene, even
though some kind of consensus has been reached over the 'standard' translation
patch for the Super Famicom version (DeJap's). Nobody ANYWHERE has EVER liked
anything ported to the PSX, so no surprise there. But at the very end, Final
Fantasy V was able to ride the wave all the other 8- and 16-bit Final Fantasy
games rode as well; the transition from console to handheld. Everybody was
bored with coding NEW games for the Game Boy Advance, so there you go. The
thing's 32-bit anyway.

Still emulation for a large part obviously, but Square-Enix had put a decent
amount of effort, thought and new content into the game this time. The extras
were actually kinda neat, the translation was handled as if Final Fantasy V was
an extra long and interactive episode of Futurama (spot-on as far as the
demographic was concerned) starring Philip J. Bartz and killing Movers while
bungee-jumping beats the crap out of killing Movers while wasting your life
away behind a controller and your third bag o' Cheetos that day.

Decent documentation hasn't existed until instructrtrepe, saw the FF V ROM for
what it was (kids, this was all pre-GBA); a largely uncharted landscape full
of monsters, treasures and nubile women. Now, we've got pretty much everything
we need; info, a canon translation, the interest of the masses.

This document you're looking at, it's a weird project. I started this in 2006.
Writing this, it's 2010. That's FOUR YEARS during which I've started the
project, abandoned the project, re-started the project, abandoned the project,
etcetera and ad infinitum. Every time I vowed to finish the thing this time,
re-read the document, made changes throughout, then forgot all about it again
in favor of Odinknowswhat. Working on these things is my passion, don't ask me
to explain it... but I can honestly say that without the continued support and
kind e-mails from around the world, I never would have pulled through on
finishing this, the Final Fantasy V Advance Walkthrough and Battle Tactics
Guide.

So, hat's off to you!

**********************************
 3.0     Set-up of the document, and slang you're going to start recognizing
**********************************

Slang:

Ctrl + F:

That most holy of combos, the road to salvation. Had enough of the ridicule of
those more adapted to today's lifestyle than you? Have you been bossed around
by the 'elite' for far too long? Don't take it out on the naturally superior,
but Physician, heal thyself: Ctrl + F is the search function. Learn to love it
like your long-lost little brother.

ST:

Single-target. It targets a single target.

MT:

Multi-target. It targets multiple targets, in most cases all.

A primary action ability is the action ability listed under 'Attack' and is
unique to a Job. The Thief's primary action ability is 'Steal', for instance.
You can't change primary action abilities. In this document, a (primary) action
ability is indicated with a '!' marked in front of its name.

A secondary action ability is what appears if you choose an action ability to
fill a character's empty ability slot. Secondary action abilities can be a
great or a horrible idea, depending on the mechanics behind it. Some Jobs
function better with a secondary action ability than the Job it came from did.
In this document, a (secondary) action ability is indicated with a '!' marked
in front of its name.

A support ability can be set, but won't appear in-battle. This is because a
support ability is either passive or reactive, not something you choose to do.
Counter lets you counter-attack physical attacks, for instance, or Vigilance
prevents back attacks.

Every monster has a !Special Technique, which can have any number of facets. At
the most basic, a !Special Technique is a modified physical attack, and
physical modifiers are used to avoid it if possible. However, a !special
technique can also merely set a status instead of dealing damage, pierce
Defense unlike normal physical attacks or be unblockable and thus not subject
to physical evasion. A monster's !Special is indicated by a '!' in front of its
name.

I make a distinction between four type of Jobs. This distinction is only
strictly relevant as far as equipment options go. Stat-wise there are often
similarities between Jobs in a selection.

Heavy Armor Jobs are capable of wearing Heavy Armor, Clothes, Heavy Helmets and
Shields. They generally have high Strength and high Stamina, making them
perfect for Front Row melee position. Heavy Armor Jobs include the Knight, the
Mystic Knight, the Berserker, the Dragoon, the Samurai and the Gladiator.

Clothes Jobs are capable of wearing Clothes and Light Helmets. They can be
considered melee units as well, though they tend to specialize in different
ways of helping the party. Their Strength and Stamina tend to be lower than
Heavy Armor Jobs, but they make up for it with higher Agility and special
skills. Clothes Jobs include the Thief, the Monk, the Ninja and the Ranger. The
Monk here is an exception to the expected stat lay-out, since the Monk's
Strength and Stamina surpasses even the Heavy Armored Jobs.

Robe Jobs are spellcasters capable of wearing Robes and Hats. They have weak
physical stats but specialize in their respective schools of magic. Robe Jobs
include the White Mage, the Black Mage, the Time Mage, the Summoner, the
Geomancer, the Bard, the Necromancer and the Oracle.

Hybrid Jobs are capable of wearing Clothes, Robes, Light Helmets, Hats and
sometimes Shields. They are those that combine magical properties with physical
utilities. Their stats are often mediocre across the board, with fewer high and
low points. Hybrid Jobs include the Blue Mage, the Red Mage, the Chemist, the
Dancer and Cannoneer.

Since the Mime and the Freelancer have broader equipment selections than any
kind of Job pool and they take on properties of the other Jobs, they cannot be
classified.

Walkthrough chapters are governed like this:

Location: The Location given is, where possible, the same as the location given
  in the menu when you're there. This is not a hard concept, I take :p

Opponents: Enemies encountered and/or fought, often with a (#) given to
  indicate their Bestiary entry. On occasion, opponents are fought that have no
  entry in the Bestiary; in that case, no number is given (-). Rare but
  possible is the situation where a monster is actually distinct according to
  the game itself, but both add to the same listing in the Bestiary. No
  distinction is made between the monsters in this case, as it would serve no
  purpose. An example is the Goblins you fight with Bartz alone as your first
  battle and the Goblins you fight on the Overworld Map a bit later; stats and
  dropped items   are different, but both add to the Bestiary listing of
  'Goblin' at #1. I will talk about the Bestiary in the walkthrough itself,
  guiding you towards a complete one; section 10.2 of this document contains a
  Bestiary checklist if you want to keep track.

Container contents: Any item that can be found when facing a chest, urn, barrel
  or similar container is given here. These are the items that count towards
  your Treasure %, with five exceptions: two Cottages in Tycoon Castle, a Blitz
  Whip in Jachol Cave, a Cottage in Surgate Castle you can only obtain when on
  Planet R and a Cottage you can find in Carwen, but only when on Planet R.
  These are also the five treasures Lone Wolf steals if you release him; these
  items are handled by a distinct event in the code. Section 10.1 of this
  document contains a treasure checklist if you want to keep track of these
  treasures; when following the document normally, you'll get all the treasures
  you'll need for that hard-earned 100% treasure hunter's super happy fun
  feeling.

Miscellaneous items: Any item that you can obtain through means beyond the
  silly container just-lying-around practice. These items include items given
  to you by NPCs, but mostly those items you can steal from enemies or those
  that are dropped by foes, either randomly or always. These treasures do not
  count towards your Treasure %

Blue magic: Any Blue spell you can obtain from the opponents listed in any
  given section, some will require !Control or application of the Confuse
  status.

Features: Anything noteworthy that didn't fit in the other categories, this
  mostly includes spells you obtain from NPCs or books and Pianos.

Final notice: there are three things any first-time player will want to be
aware of that should be considered throughout the game; the Bestiary (which has
no in-game effect, but people want it perfect), the treasure percentage (which
as a collector's game has no other effect than giving you the items that you
find) and how often you run, as fleeing powers up a blade called the Chicken
Knife and debilitates a blade called the Brave Blade. I'll keep you informed
about these ever-important issues throughout the document.

On with the show!

**********************************
 4.0     The Walkthrough
**********************************

Table of Contents:

 4.1.1   Prelude; the demolition of the Wind Crystal
 4.1.2   Prelude; the road to Tule
 4.1.3   Prelude; Faris Scherwiz
 4.1.4   Prelude; the lands around Tule
 4.1.5   Prelude; the town of Tule
 4.1.6   Prelude; the Wind Shrine and Wing Raptor

 4.2.1   The Wind Crystal Jobs
 4.3.1   Preparing for the Torna Canal
 4.3.2   The Torna Canal
 4.4.1   The Ship Graveyard
 4.4.2   The battle with Siren
 4.5.1   The lands of Carwen
 4.5.2   The town of Carwen
 4.6.1   North Mountain
 4.6.2   The battle with Magissa
 4.7.1   Home sweet home; Castle Tycoon
 4.8.1   The town of Walse
 4.8.2   Castle Walse and the coming of the second meteorite
 4.8.3   The golden warrior and the tower of Walse
 4.8.4   The fight with Garula
 4.9.1   The Water Crystal Jobs
 4.10.1  Karnak county
 4.10.2  The town of Karnak
 4.10.3  Ice to see you, Shiva
 4.11.1  The Fire-Powered Ship
 4.11.2  The battle with Liquid Flame
 4.12.1  Escaping Karnak Castle
 4.13.1  Three Fire Crystal Jobs
 4.14.1  En route to the Library of the Ancients
 4.14.2  The Library of the Ancients and the battle with Ifrit
 4.14.3  The battle with Byblos
 4.15.1  The Seven Seas
 4.16.1  The shores of Jachol
 4.16.2  The town of Jachol
 4.16.3  Jachol Cave
 4.17.1  Shores of Istory
 4.17.2  The town of Istory
 4.17.3  The forests of Istory and the fight with Ramuh
 4.18.1  The town of Crescent
 4.18.2  Crescent Island and the Black Chocobo
 4.18.3  Two Fire Crystal Jobs
 4.19.1  The town of Lix
 4.20.1  The battle with the Sandworm
 4.20.2  The Desert of Shifting Sands and Gohn, the Town of Ruin
 4.21.1  Ancient Ronka Ruins under Crescent Island
 4.21.2  Airship Exploitation; Prototype
 4.22.1  The Ancient Ruins and the battle with Adamantoise
 4.23.1  The cannons of the Flying Ronka Civilization
 4.23.2  The Flying Ronka Civilization
 4.23.3  The battle with Archeoaevis
 4.24.1  Meteorite 1; Karnak Meteorite
 4.24.2  Meteorite 2; Walse Meteorite
 4.24.3  Meteorite 3; Gohn Meteorite
 4.25.1  Right and Ready

 4.26.1  Alien World; Pao Island
 4.27.1  Galuf to the rescue; the first fight with Gilgamesh
 4.27.2  Escape to the Big Bridge
 4.27.3  The Big Bridge; the second fight with Gilgamesh
 4.28.1  The lands of Gloceana
 4.28.2  Regole
 4.29.1  The sealed castle of Kuza
 4.30.1  The power is yours; saving the planet one Moogle at the time
 4.30.2  The legacy of Mr. Moogle; Defiance
 4.30.3  The Moogle Village
 4.31.1  Castle Bal
 4.31.2  En route to Quelb
 4.31.3  The town of Quelb and Lord Kelger Vlondett
 4.31.4  Drakenvale
 4.31.5  The fight with Dragon Pod
 4.32.1  Ghido the Sage and Xezat Matias Surgate
 4.32.2  Surage Fleet; the third fight with Gilgamesh
 4.32.2  Xezat of Ice; the barrier tower
 4.32.4  The fight with Atomos
 4.33.1  The town of Moore
 4.34.1  The fight with Catoblepas
 4.35.1  Our brilliant leader: the great Sage Ghido
 4.35.2  The Great Forest of Moore
 4.35.3  The fight against the Guardians
 4.36.1  The fight with the Gil Turtle; get rich or die tryin'
 4.37.1  Castle Exdeath 1; ascension and the fight with Carbuncle
 4.37.2  The fourth fight with Gilgamesh
 4.37.3  The fight with the dark warlock Exdeath

 4.38.1  A second prelude; the fight with Antlion
 4.39.1  Mission statement
 4.39.2  Preparation for the Pyramid in the Desert of Shifting Sands
 4.40.1  The Pyramid of Moore; the Earth tablet
 4.40.2  The fight with Melusine
 4.41.1  Airship Exploitation: Planet R
 4.41.2  Airship Exploitation: They see me Odin', they hatin'
 4.41.3  Overworld Encounters: Planet R
 4.42.1  The Phantom Village
 4.43.1  The Island Shrine; the Wind tablet
 4.44.1  Fork Tower; the fight against Minotaur and Omniscient
 4.45.1  The sunken Tower of Walse; Famed Mimic Gogo and the 'final' shard
 4.46.1  The Great Sea Trench; the Fire tablet
 4.47.1  Istory Falls; the Water tablet
 4.47.2  Istory Falls; the battle with Leviathan
 4.48.1  The Secret Shards
 4.49.1  Taking the Black Chocobo; the battle with Bahamut
 4.49.2  Taking the Black Chocobo; the Phoenix Tower
 4.50.1  Wrapping Things Up; How to Kill Fiends and Mutilate People

 4.51.1  Interdimensional Rift; the Desert
 4.51.2  Interdimensional Rift; the Ruins
 4.51.3  Interdimensional Rift; the Forest
 4.51.4  Interdimensional Rift; the Cave
 4.51.5  Interdimensional Rift; the Library
 4.51.6  Interdimensional Rift; the Tower
 4.51.7  Interdimensional Rift; the Dimension Castle
 4.51.8  Interdimensional Rift; the Last Floor
 4.52.1  Facing the Void

 4.53.1  The Undeathables; Famed Mimic Gogo
 4.53.2  The Undeathables; Magic Pot
 4.53.3  The Undeathables; Omega
 4.53.4  The Undeathables; Shinryu

 4.54.1  The Sealed Temple; Unlocking
 4.54.2  The Sealed Temple; Arena
 4.54.3  The Sealed Temple; The Lethe Court
 4.55.1  The Dark Arts
 4.56.1  The Undeatables; Omega Mk. II
 4.56.2  The Undeatables; Neo Shinryu
 4.57.1  The Cloister of the Dead

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.1.1  Prelude; the demolition of the Wind Crystal
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Goblin (#1)

  Container contents:
  Phoenix Down

The intro is fairly long and pleasant to watch. God, don't you just hate it
when walkthrough writers go into detail about the intro? Then this happens,
then that happens, some dude gets his hand cut off, than there's an explosion
and the bad guy transforms...if you don't bother to watch the bloody intro, how
dedicated can the player be to a walkthrough, one might ponder?

Regardless, meet Bartz Klauser, young adventurer from the quiet town of Lix.
Romantically wasting his life away in what has to be the smallest forest of the
world, he is forcefully pulled into our collective attention when a meteorite
falls from the sky and crashes into the ground near Bartz. He quickly discusses
the situation with his best friend, the chocobo cleverly named Boko. Quickly
putting out the campfire (remember, only you etc.), Bartz races to the scene.

Welcome to controlling Boko on the Overworld. You could go north, but there's
nothing interesting there. Let's focus on the meteorite now. When you reach the
meteorite to the east, you'll dive right into Tycoon Meteorite. When you
approach the Big Rock of Falling Fire, Bartz will hop off Boko to ensure his
safety and carry on by foot. The first thing noticeable about the meteorite is
the fact that an unconscious girl is being taken away by two goblins. Obviously
that has nothing to do with the meteorite itself, but GOBLINS!

You get the jump on them.

This is your first battle, and your options are limited. There's a Broadsword
in Bartz his right hand, and it was designed to kill things. The Goblins are a
nuisance and you want them to die. The Goblins will punch you in the face when
you let them; luckily, they are no trouble whatsoever. Use !Attack to win! I
guess I could note that the left Goblin is in the Back Row, but since even with
the damage reduction it'll go down in one hit, it's not really important.

Like the chivalrous young hero protagonist that he is, Bartz rescues the girl
and calms her down. There's a chance to give Bartz a name now. I'll just call
him Bartz, but if you're the sort of person who takes an interest in the
age-old Butz/Bartz debate, be my guest.

There's confusion all around. Unknown to Bartz, the girl he has just saved is
Lenna Charlotte Tycoon, princess of Tycoon and (gasp) daughter to Alexander
Highwind Tycoon who is (gasp again) king of Tycoon. The good man went to check
out the enigmatic Wind Crystal since it doesn't appear to do a whole lot lately,
he's nowhere to be seen, and now there are meteorites. Before the story gets
too interesting, however, there's also moaning. Even if you decide to leave
with Lenna and tour the Overworld Map some more, there's no reason to do so. It
doesn't take a grade in anything to find somebody lying next to the meteorite.

It's an old man. The old man wakes up when you talk to him, but acts rather
confused. The cause seems to be amnesia. I'm sure we won't have to listen to
this guy's slowly unravelling and undoubtedly tragic past throughout the rest
of the game! The old man's name is Galuf. Now that everybody has regained his
wits, both the young girl and the old man tell Bartz they need to go to the
Wind Shrine, home of the Wind Crystal. Neither of them seems to have any
business there, but Bartz has only just met them so has no reason to stop them.
He lets 'em go, and the young girl and old man depart for a lifetime of
adventure. They save the world. The End. Would you like a chocolate-covered
pretzel?

There's a little side-objective for Bartz too, by the way: see that gigantic
dark all-concealing tree in the lower-right corner? There's a hidden passageway
towards a Phoenix Down. Make sure to grab it; these babies sell for 500 Gil and
have the power to revive fallen party members.

Reunited with Boko, you quickly find yourself on the Overworld Map again. You
can't return to the quiet little corner you started this game on, so you have
no choice but to go north, even though you know there's nothing interesting
there. This may very well be the most boring Final Fantasy out of...no, wait,
it's an earthquake.

In what I'm sure could have been a rather impressive action sequence hadn't
this been an early Super Famicom/PSX/GBA game, an earthquake commences, shrill
shrieks are heard in the distance and you're going to have to fight off two
teams of two Goblins with Bartz, while Boko leaps over tremors like it's
nobody's business. In the end, Bartz finds himself reunited with Lenna and
Galuf, who join the party.

With the road to Tule blocked, a town most probably required to pass through to
reach the Wind Shrine, the road to the Wind Crystal is also blocked. Damn it
all. Let's go north and see what kind of crazy plan we can cook up. It quickly
seems the plan is cave-related. Boko's wise enough to quit right there.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.1.2  Prelude; the road to Tule
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Steel Bat (#2), Devil Crab (#3), Stroper (#4)

  Container contents:
  Leather Cap

  Cave, level 1:
  35 % Steel Bat x 2
  35 % Steel Bat x 2, Devil Crab
  23 % Devil Crab x 2
  6  % Steel Bat x 3

  Cave, level 2 & 3:
  35 % Stroper x 2
  35 % Stroper x 2, Steel Bat
  23 % Steel Bat x 3
   6 % Steel Bat x 2

It's a cave. Like in most caves even in our world, there are bats, land crabs
and mutant plant creatures that try to kill you. Here's what you'll want to do
for utmost efficiency in killing them:

Lenna will always be the first to act due to her superior Agility. Take the
Broadsword from Bartz and give it to Lenna. Give Lenna's Knife she took from
home and give it to Bartz. Galuf stays naked in your party, like old men should
never do, but always do anyway. He'll have a 8 % chance of doing a critical hit
with each punch, actually landing a solid blow: [CRITICAL-LINK]

The monsters aren't very interesting yet so I'll just quickly name them and
what they do.

Steel Bats are flying bats. They attack physically, with !Claw (1.5 damage) and
the Vampire spell. The Vampire spell acts like this: it drains (max HP -
current HP) damage. That means that the more damage a Steel Bat has taken, the
more damage it'll do with Vampire. However, since you should be taking the SB's
down with one or two hits anyway, you should pay no attention to its existence.
Note that Vampire was supposed to deal only 50 % of that damage, but due to a
bug that slipped in with the GBA port, it heals the caster completely.

   iOS/Android: In the Super Famicom game, Vampire has the correct damage
   formula. In the GBA game, damage is doubled, healing the caster completely.
   In the iOS/Android the damage formula is correct, but now it will always miss
   verus Heavy targets. They can't get Vampire right, it seems. At least it's
   not as bad as Twilight. 

Stropers are entirely uninteresting. They merely fight and are silly.

Devil Crabs have 3 Defense, which is enough to make life a little annoying for
you. They attack physically and with !Pincer (Attack x 1.5).

Any slash with the Broadsword will dispatch a creature, but note that Devil
Crabs are the only ones with notable Defense meaning that they will nullify
Galuf's punches (unless he scores a critical hit) and survive a single Knife
slash. Strike Devil Crabs first and go for everything else second.

Let this be a moment to say that running from battle could be BAD. Don't allow
it. Why is this? Far, far into this game you may choose between two weapons, of
which the sword version loses power every time you run away and have run away.
Never run and it'll be one of the strongest Sword you'll ever find. Run a few
times and it'll be just mediocre. The alternate option powers UP when you run,
but you can always start running then if you believe that weapon to be the
superior of the two. Obviously, if you're already firmly rooted in the Brave
Blade versus Chicken Knife debate and have chosen your school, feel free to run
whenever you wish. Pansy. Personally, I find the no-running rule to be very
restrictive, and the time it takes to power up the alternative too long so I end
up ignoring both weapons and choose my fight or flight response in total 
freedom.

You could at this point return outside, but Bartz'll get on Boko automatically,
so we're still not allowed to wander the Overworld Map freely. Guess we should
continue. Once you enter the cave, Bartz will comment on the existence of a
recovery spring to the left of you. Go there to heal up from the pain you
received while fighting the Goblins. In the next room, the only path you can
follow will take you across a small cutscene, for this cave is not uninhabited;
a shady looking fellow checks his surroundings, notices nothing threatening and
pushes a button to grand passage for him. Before you gloat over your hiding
skills and follow him, be sure to grab the Leather Cap from the chest to your
left. It doesn't really matter whom you stick it on; ladies first?

Push the button like the other guy did to open the oddly snake-like door. Only
a few steps further you'll notice a ship sailing merrily merrily down the
stream, but how does it accomplish this feat without the wind blowing?
Mysteries abound in this action-packed cave! Let's continue.

Great. Now there's pirates.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.1.3  Prelude; Faris Scherwiz
**********************************

It all seemed so nice and cozy back when it was just one of the forces of
nature calling it quits for the day. You've spent the last few hours fighting
through packs of Goblins while the ground collapsed underneath you and chasing
the elusive road to this mysterious Tule through a cave filled with monsters.
And now there's pirates.

A cave filled with murderous thugs inspires Lenna to suggest making your
location known, while Galuf remains convinced this is an unnecessarily complex
path to certain death and suggests trying to steal the magically sailing pirate
ship.  And Bartz, let's face it, your hair day isn't that grand either. Poor
guy.

The only two pirates to be seen in the near vicinity of your party are both
sleeping, which is a huge plus. The right one wakes up for a moment if you try
and talk to him (you stupid!) but you can rest assured there are no lasting
consequences, like with unsafe sex.

Walk the plank the good way and enter the ship! Obviously you could just grab
the wheel and make a go for it, but it might be wise to check the entire thing
out before sailing to the horizon with it. Within the ship there are two doors;
the left one leads to a locked jail door leading to an empty jail, the right
one houses yet another sleeping pirate, mumbling about Syldra or something.
We'll deal with him later; time to make a run for it.

Trying to grab the wheel, Bartz notices he can't get the wheel to turn, and
while Lenna and Galuf are trying to figure out what's wrong with Bartz, they're
discovered. Lenna quickly reveals her royal identity since it seems like a good
idea to her; captain Faris Scherwiz seems more interested in her jewelry,
though. The pirates don't even have to TRY before forcing the entire party to
the ground, tied and ready to be locked up, so yay for the plot powers of our
heroes so far.

In the night: lamenting.

In the morning: action!

The prisoners are freed much to the dismay of Faris' crew, the order to sail to
the Wind Shrine is given and the secret behind the ship's ever-lasting sailing
powers is revealed to be a huge-ass sea...thingy, we only see her head. Her
name is Syldra. Time to get this show on the road, savvy?

Yeah, you'll want to tell the helpful first mate to buzz off. We're going to
Tule first. There's all kinds of neat stuff to do there. It's to the west. You
may choose to skip this entire section and dive into the Wind Shrine unprepared
(which still doesn't make it too hard) but there's really no good reason to do
so.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.1.4  Prelude; the lands around Tule
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Goblin (#1), Killer Bee (#5), Nutkin (#6), Stray Cat (#7), Gatling (#16), Big
  Horn (#17), Bandersnatch (#19)

  Grasslands near Tule:
  35 % Goblin x 3
  35 % Killer Bee x 2, Goblin
  23 % Nutkin x 3
   6 % Stray Cat x 4

  Grasslands south-east of Tule, near and in the forest:
  35 % Goblin
  35 % Killer Bee x 2
  23 % Goblin x 3
   6 % Killer Bee x 2, Goblin

First off, before you enter Tule itself you should be aware of the fact that
you're now on the Overworld Map without Boko, allowing you to fight random
encounters. Speaking of Boko, it appears that Bartz has forgotten all about his
best friend. We'll pick him up later.

You can fight Goblins on the Overworld Map now. They're of a slightly different
variety than the Goblins you defeated earlier; they'll rarely drop a Leather Cap
now. Note that both varieties will make the same Goblin appear in the Bestiary,
this being the more recent one. Goblin'll also randomly use a move called Goblin
Punch, of which I'll explain the details later. It's basically a normal but
unblockable physical attack with a few quirks.

Killer Bees fly and attack physically with Attack and !Needle, which shouldn't
be confused with the enemy attack Needle. !Needle inflicts 1.5 damage.

Nutkin are chewing on their nuts while skirmishing, so they slowly regain HP
during battle. Randomly a green 1 will pop up to indicate their incredible
recovery rate. One hit should kill them; they attack with Attack and !Incisor.
!Incisor never misses and ignores Defense, watch out!

Stray Cats merely attack physically, sometimes with !Tail. Unassuming.

Lands near Torna Canal:
35 % Bandersnatch, Big Horn
35 % Bandersnatch x 3
23 % Bandersnatch
6  % Gatling

The enemy Bandersnatch can appear if you land on one of the thin strokes of
land between Tule and the Wind Shrine. Bandersnatches are powerful creatures
that may deal anywhere between 60 to 100 damage with their normal physical
attacks and !Body Blow, their special technique. You'll want to brawl with them
a bit for the Bestiary entry if you care about those things, but later; they
almost one-hit kill you now unless you start leveling. Quite frumious, they
are.

Gatlings will normally just Attack, but if you hit them with an Attack of your
own they'll counter with !Needle, a more powerful physical attack. They'll
rarely drop Gold Needles.

Big Horns attack with Attack and (shocker) !Horn, which is a more powerful
physical attack. If you hit them with a Fire-elemental attack and they survive,
they'll use Flee immediately to leave the battlefield, but you don't have any
Fire-elemental attacks at this point.

This is the first time you're free on the Overworld Map to fight your own
battles the way you see fit. No doubt some guy has leveled to 99 right here.
Doesn't that knowledge make you feel great about yourself?

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.1.5  Prelude; the town of Tule
**********************************

  Container contents:
  100 Gil, 150 Gil, Ether, Leather Shoes x 2, Phoenix Down x 2, Potion x 2,
  Tent x 2

  Features:
  Piano

In the meantime: Tule! Check out Faris' equipment; he's got a Leather Shield on
him and a Dagger, a more powerful knife than the Knife. Give him the Leather Cap
you have and enter Tule. All the pirates will swarm into the Pub for the brew of
sunshine known as grog and Faris won't stay behind. On a side note, make no
mistake about the exceedingly disgusting nature of grog. Seriously, look it up.
Hey, at least it helps fight off scurvy.

Should you ever try to leave town, Faris'll automatically rejoin you using his
pirate senses.

The purple wizard-guy near the entrance of town wants to take you to the
Greenhorn's Club. It's a good idea (although you could've walked yourself);
it's on the southern-west edge of Tule. Claim your status as a beginner upon
entrance an you'll be granted passage. There's a lot of info given here, but
we're here for the treasure. I'm here for the info, remember?

The crate contains a Tent, the barrel contains a Phoenix Down and the grey pot
contains a Potion. The bottom green wizard mentions the existence of fake walls
and sure enough, there's one leading around the grey pot to the chest you
couldn't normally reach. It contains an Ether. The other chest contains 100
Gil. Time to go upstairs! Here's, a green wizard is standing over a chest,
claiming he has a gift for you. Opening the chest nets you a battle with a
Goblin! Kill it.

Miscellaneous note: the first time you talk to the green wizard guy here, he'll
say: "Inside this chest is a present from me!" and every subsequent time he'll
say: "A-hua-hua! Sometimes monsters hide in treasure chests. From now on, be
careful!". It doesn't matter when, or even if, you open the chest at all. Poor
old guy is probably as blind as a bat.

After the battle you'll get some Leather Shoes, which increase both your
Defense and Magic Defense by 1. All right! Time to get out. Talk to the
green-haired lady to open up the passage; mention you're no beginner anymore
when you're on the other side of the counter and she'll forcefully throw you
out. Good times :P

Time to explore town. In the barrel to the right of the Inn lies 150 Gil. To
the north, a few crates and barrels stand together. One of the barrels contains
a Potion and a crate contains a Tent. The big house to the far north belongs to
Zok, the man who built the Torna Canal and a personal friend of the king of
Tycoon. He doesn't seem to be home, however. To the far left of Zok's house
there's a bush between all the trees where you can find a Phoenix Down, and to
the far right is a crate over by the watermill which contains another pair of
Leather Shoes. Equip 'em. Let's enter the Pub now.

Faris is upstairs. One of the pirates mentions how he loves his captain, which
is odd, since he's a dude. And Faris is also a dude. And two dudes, in a
simplistic high fantasy setting like this one, that just don't fit.

On stage, there's a piano. Woohoo! You must play it. Long story short, if you
play all eight pianos in this game you unlock two more Songs for your Bards.
Short story long: [PIANO-LINK]. Anyway, the Girls Of Little Shame are in your
way. Sit down on the speshul seat to get them off stage and on your lap. For
free! Now, you can reach the piano. You suck. Let's go upstairs and sleep off
the shame.

Faris the hippie pirate captain beat you to it. Bartz decides to check in on
him. And then Galuf. And then they fall in love with the sleeping image of
Faris the hippie pirate captain. What's the rating on this game again? We
haven't cast a single Fire spell yet and the word 'flaming' already comes to
mind. Regardless, before things can escalate Faris wakes up and locks the door,
which seems like a good idea. Maybe some fresh air will do Bartz and Galuf some
good. Gets rid of all the pheromones.

Let's examine the shops:

Weapon Shop:
Broadsword           280 Gil
Rod                  200 Gil
Staff                200 Gil
 Buy one Broadsword and leave it at that. The Rod is only useful if you have
spells to cast and aren't going to use physicals anyway since it boosts your
Magic Power by a tiny margin (1). The Staff is only useful if you really,
really have no other choices. You'll get a free extra Broadsword in a very
short while, so don't feel bad for the final character with a weak weapon.
Have Galuf equipped with the Knife; since his Agility's the lowest of your
characters, he attacks the last and thus the least. Don't let the game's
Optimize function replace a Knife with a Rod; since their damage formulae are
different, the Rod will be useless while the Knife will be not useless.

Armor Shop:
Leather Shield        90 Gil
Leather Cap           50 Gil
Leather Armor         80 Gil
 What you're lacking in your inventory is three Leather Shields and three
Leather Caps. You can even buy three Leather Caps, but since you're finding one
for free in a little while, I see no reason to buy it here (although 50 Gil's a
joke, too).

Magic Shop:
Fire                 150 Gil
Blizzard             150 Gil
Thunder              150 Gil
Cure                 180 Gil
Libra                 80 Gil
Poisona               90 Gil
 I'll discuss them all when you get to use them, okay? I do suggest buying at
least the Blizzard Black Magic spell and the Cure White Magic spell so you can
cast at least one spell in both classes once you obtain the means to do so.
Blizzard is the best out of the three Black spells since it's the only one to
hit an elemental weakness in the next dungeon.

Item Shop:
Potion                40 Gil
Tent                 250 Gil
 The Item Shop, like many item shops in this game, does not make enough profit
to rent a building on its own; instead, it has to share with the Inn. Potions
heal 50 HP, Tents restore 1000 HP and MP, but only on the Overworld Map and on
Save Points. You'll get five Potions for free in a short while; another Tent or
two couldn't hurt, though.

We're done in Tule; let's go find that Wind Shrine all the cool kids are
talking about. Sailing on the Overworld Map, it's possible to approach the Torna
Canal that you pass on your way; the gates are locked, though. You can fight
its monsters in front of the gate (they're not at all quality gates, you see),
but there's nothing to gain for you so I don't suggest it.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.1.6  Prelude; the Wind Shrine and Wing Raptor
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Black Goblin (#8), White Serpent (#9), Moldwynd (#10), Mani Wizard (#11), Wing
  Raptor (#243)

  Container contents:
  Broadsword, Leather Cap, Potion x 5, Staff

  Miscellaneous items:
  Elixir (rare Moldwynd drop), Leather Shoes (rare Black Goblin drop), Rod (rare
  Mani Wizard drop)

  Blue spells:
  Aero, Goblin Punch

  Second floor:
  35 % Black Goblin x 2
  35 % White Serpent
  23 % White Serpent, Black Goblin
   6 % Moldwynd, Black Goblin, White Serpent

  Third floor:
  35 % White Serpent, Black Goblin
  35 % Moldwynd, Black Goblin, White Serpent
  23 % Moldwynd x 3
   6 % Mani Wizard, Moldwynd, Black Goblin

  Fourth floor:
  35 % Mani Wizard, White Serpent
  35 % White Serpent, Black Goblin
  23 % Mani Wizard x 3
   6 % Moldwynd x 3

The Wind Shrine is to the far north, surrounded by a little nice forest. Yeah,
the cute critters in it might attack you, but compared to the entities that
will be attacking you in the future it all seems harmless enough. Inside the
shrine, a delegation of Tycoon citizens is awaiting help. The scholar to the
left of the vial containing water from a recovery spring will give Lenna 5
Potions, which is nice enough of him. The vial itself will completely restore
your party when you drink from it. Upstairs, monsters have infested the rooms
and ol' Alex Tycoon's not coming back, so it's time to see if he's okay up
there.

Black Goblins attack with Goblin Punch and Attack, of which the former has been
mentioned before. I'll explain how it works exactly when you master the move
yourself. They rarely drop Leather Shoes, so you might want to stick around
fighting them until you've obtained two (more).

White Serpents have three attacks; Attack, !Tail (Attack x 1.5) and Entangle
which sets Paralyze for about two turns. Paralyze prevents a character from
taking actions, but it wears off eventually. White Serpents are weak to Ice-
elemental attacks, which might aid you in the future.

Moldwynd are demons of wind. They are able to cast Aero on a single target, a
Wind-elemental attack that deals around 70 damage. They can use Aero only once
without your aid (they lack the MP for more). They may also attack physically
with Attack and !Critical attack (Attack x 1.5). They rarely drop Elixirs. Aero
can be learned by Blue Mages later on in the game, but not now.

Mani Wizards attack physically with Attack and !Magic Stick, but will cast
either a Fire, Blizzard or Thunder spell on the entire party every third turn,
hurting for about 20 HP on all characters. They'll have depleted all of their
MP after a single spell, though. They rarely drop Rods. They are the only
creature in the game, aside from the solo-Bartz Goblins of the very first fight,
that are entirely incapable of dodging any physical attack; physical attacks
will always hit them, regardless of their hit rate.

On the second floor, there's a Tent in a chest and a door leading to a Save
Point. Save at the Save Point if you want and continue. It's a consecrated
circle, see? In this new room, there's a chest containing a Leather Cap to the
right and some stairs allowing you to continue to the left. Equip the Leather
Cap if you must and press on.

On the third floor, you can either walk all the way around or know that there's
a secret passage here; you can walk through the thin wall to get to the door on
the other wise. This left door leads to a chest containing a Broadsword; the
door to the right leads nowhere. Give this Broadsword to someone if it upgrades
their physical power; the Dagger is about as powerful as a Broadsword when the
wielder is level 4 and surpasses it on higher levels.

The big-ass bird guarding the stairs? Yeah, it needs to go. It'll attack you as
soon as you stand in front of it, but be sure you're fully healed as Wing
Raptor is fully capable of delivering big ouchies if you're not careful. I
kinda suggest reaching level 5 before tackling the feathered fiend as you get a
nice damage boost when you reach it and you can find Leather Shoes and Elixirs
in the meantime if luck is on your side.

Wing Raptor
Level: 1, HP: 250, MP: 25
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Potion (common)
Win: Phoenix Down
Status: Float
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Claw: Barrier-piercing
Special Technique Effect: Unblockable
Vulnerable to: Death, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk,
  Silence, Stop, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Claw, Breath Wing

You have no way of exploiting those status ailments, which is sad. You'll just
have to rely on physical violence, then. This is what Wing Raptor does:

Wing Raptor's signature move is Breath Wing, a Wind-elemental attack that deals
(25 % target's maximum HP) damage. Wing Raptor will either use Attack (33 %) or
Breath Wing (66 %) for two turns, after which it'll fold its wings over its
beak and stop attacking. It gains 20 Defense and 40% Evasion in doing so,
making any physical attack useless. Rods and Staves have the power to damage
Wing Raptor in this form, but you shouldn't attack him now, as he'll counter
any violence done to him by !Claw, as he clearly indicates:

"A fierce talon swipe will meet those when attack when its wings are closed!"

After it takes two turns, it'll revert back to normal and use a Breath Wing
attack to say hello.

At 250 HP, Wing Raptor takes nine attacks with a level 4 party before going
down. Sadly, that means it'll be able to take three rounds, during which he'll
close itself down. If your party is fully healed it is entirely capable of
taking in the worst case scenario of three Breath Wings. As long as you don't
attack during his defensive phase, you're good to go. If you leveled beyond
level 4, your Broadswords and especially your Dagger will do more damage and
Wing Raptor should go down before going defensive at all.

And you get another Phoenix Down. For that price, you'd expect them to be a
little more rare, no?

On the fourth floor, there's a hidden passageway to a chest containing a Staff.
It's in the lower-right corner. Staves deal weak magical damage which remains
equally powerful from the Back Row. Useless for your Freelancers right now.
The fourth floor contains the Wind Crystal.

Which is broken.

Shit.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.2.1  The Wind Crystal Jobs
**********************************

Upon discovery of the broken Wind Crystal, our heroes are left with precious
little time to think it over, as a whole lot of freaky stuff happens right then
and there. A sparkle from what we can assume is the Fire Crystal imbues Faris
with the Spirit of Fire, Courage. Lenna obtains the Spirit of Water, Devotion.
Galuf obtains the Spirit of Earth, Hope, while Bartz obtains the Spirit of the
broken Wind Crystal, Passion.

Once again, before anyone can discuss what exactly happened, a cracked and
tired voice calls towards Lenna. It's Alexander, and he's not looking too good.
He tells you what the immobile crystals could not and sends you on a quest to
protect the Crystals. The three remaining crystals are about to shatter
according to King Tycoon, and they need to be prevented from doing so. Before
the good King can continue however, a dark aura surrounds him and forcefully
removes him from the room.

The Crystal shards all hold the soul of a long-gone warrior of a certain class,
and by equipping the crystal shard (how exactly that may be done is left to
anybody's imagination) the Chosen Warriors may tap into the powers of these
warriors. The souls have no name except for the Job they represent.

For a quick tutorial on the Job system that is in any way superior to what the
game gives you, please go here here: [JOB-LINK]

For now, you'll want to know all about the Jobs you've been offered. I suggest
you take a look at section 6.0 for information about the Jobs and abilities.
Use these quick links to learn more about specific Jobs:

[KNIGHT-LINK]    [MONK-LINK]     [THIEF-LINK]

[WHITEM-LINK]    [BLACKM-LINK]   [BLUEM-LINK]

Abilities to possibly shoot for in the near future:

Learning (Blue Mage) only takes a grand total of 10 + 20 ABP. The !Check you
learn in the process is beyond worthless, but you'll want to be able to learn
Blue Magic spells without having to resort to creating a Blue Mage when the
offense clearly isn't there at that point of the game. Since !Blue is a
great skillset for both magically and physically inclined characters, it's
not a bad idea to slowly build towards that goal for all four. 

!Black level 1 & !White level 1. With 10 ABP each it takes very little effort
to learn the basics of one school of magic and put it on the other Job. More
than one healer is a good thing, and you don't want an entirely offensively
crippled character.

Barehanded. From now on, you have acceptable to good physical offense on any
character you choose regardless of what weapons you're carrying. Monk punches
are very powerful, and Barehanded can be used to increase Strength to da max
even when you're keeping your weapon. A related matter that fun for the whole
family: if you set Barehanded on a Blue Mage Bartz (known as the 'Triple B
combo') in the SNES and GBA game, Bartz will reveal a second face when 
punching an enemy! If you named Bartz 'Zaphod' just because of this, you are 
now AWESOME.

Other notes:

A White Mage without offense is a far inferior character than a Black Mage
without support spells. I suggest going for offense first, especially when
starting out.

The Monk learns Barehanded after only 45 ABP, giving any character the ability
to have the game's best Strength and great to decent 'weapons'. Giving a Thief
the Barehanded ability makes for a character with the highest Strength and
Agility stats in the game; a great combination available from the very start of
your ABP career!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.3.1  Preparing for the Torna Canal
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Steel Bat (#2), Devil Crab (#3), Stroper (#4)

  Container contents:
  300 Gil, Ether, Tent

  Miscellaneous items:
  Potion x8

  Blue Spells:
  Aero, Goblin Punch, Vampire

Instead of taking the Warp Stone behind the altar, why not just walk on down?
You'll earn some of those ABPs now, and it'll be fun. If you have a Blue Mage
installed in your team, be sure to learn the Aero spell from Moldwynd enemies
(uses randomly every second turn, only has the MP to cast it once) and Goblin
Punch from the Black Goblins which they'll use whenever wherever for unlimited
amounts of time since Goblin Punch doesn't cost any MP. I find it works best
to simply turn all four characters into Blue Mages for this so there's no
frustration when the enemies target the wrong characters. Flex your new Jobs a
little. All the way down, the Wind Shrine refugees will ponder the reason
behind the broken Wind Crystal; could it be that the machine that amplified the
Crystal's power was the cause?

On your new Blue Magic spells: Aero is a slightly stronger and Wind-elemental
version of your Black Magic spells. Goblin Punch is kind of odd. It basically
takes the weapon(s) the caster has, applies the normal sword damage parameter
and is non-elemental and unblockable. Also, when the 'caster' and the target
share a level, Goblin Punch its power is multiplied by 8 and becomes barrier-
piercing. In most cases just equivalent to a physical attack, but without a
damage penalty from the Back Row and no random variance bonus damage, which is
very slight. Blue Mages have almost no business in the Front Row when Goblin
Punch has been learned.

Using the pirate ship, you can sail to Tule. On the little peninsulas near the
gates of the Torna Canal you can fight Gatlings, Big Horn and Bandersnatch
monsters. Three Bandersnatch monsters give 300 Gil, 45 Experience Points and 3
ABP, so that's all right. They're kinda powerful though, so watch your step.
Monks are great if you're intent on facing them. 

In Tule, Faris will leave you again to go sulk in his room or whatever. The
lovey-dovey scene can still be accessed if you didn't earlier. You can now go
find the Weapon Shop if you wish to buy a Rod for your Black Mage(s) and go buy
all the spells in the Magic Store. They're all very easy to understand.

Libra checks a monster's Level, HP, Weakness and currently inflicted Status
Effects. Poisona removes the Poison status from a target. Fire, Blizzard
and Thunder are all similar except for their respective element. Buy them all;
you'll utilize all three of them if you carry a Black Mage around.

When you check back on Zok, he's home! Since the closest-by Crystal is the
Water Crystal in the country of Walse and the only route there is through the
Torna Canal, we need the keys. Never mind there's been rumors of a monster that
has been long-sealed by the now rapidly weakening power of the Wind Crystal, we
gots us some Water Crystal protection to do. Zok seems hesitant to give you the
key up to the point he claims he's lost the keys. A likely story.

In the night, it seems that Bartz' father has some Crystal-related backstory as
well. Zok's watching Lenna sleep in the meantime, but we can hardly blame an
old man's who is living alone. Zok slips Bartz the keys to the Torna Canal, as
to not let Lenna know for some reason or another. Time to go, regardless; hope
Faris is ready to say goodbye to his pirate buddies. It seems so.

After walking from the Overworld Map onto the pirate ship, there's a cutscene
to once again press the fact that shattering crystals is not a good thing.
Before we make haste in saving the world, it's time to visit some buddies of
us; Boko's still waiting for us near the Pirate Cave.

Have Syldra pull the pirate ship all the way to the south-east, where you'll be
able to touch land eventually. Walk up to the entrance of the cave, where Boko
is nowhere to be found. Chasing after him will net you more encounters with
some Steel Bats, which wouldn't have been too interesting hadn't it been for
your Blue Mage(s), who can learn Vampire here.

I've already explained the damage formula of Vampire: (max HP - current HP).
When your Blue Mage is severely damaged, he or she can restore him- or herself
quite nicely with a Vampire attack, and by its very nature the attack will be
relatively useful throughout the entire game so keep in mind the Blue spellset
has this power. In the Super Famicom release, Vampire deals (max HP - current
HP) / 2 damage. Vampire being twice as strong in the GBA game is a bug, but
since it's not our fault and it'd be silly to ignore the attack, never mind.

When you find the pirate hideout, there's a skull button to the left of the
entrance which opens a door to three chests containing a Tent, an Ether and 300
Gil. From one of the pirates walking around in the main room Faris obtains 8
Potions too. This guy wouldn't have been here if you came here before sending
the Tule pirates home. Boko is having its wounds treated too; have Bartz say
hello and leave the cave.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.3.2  The Torna Canal
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Sucker (#191), Octokraken (#192), Karlabos (#244)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Tent (guaranteed Karlabos drop)

  35 % Octokraken x 2
  35 % Sucker x 2
  23 % Sucker x 2, Octokraken
   6 % Octokraken x 2, Sucker

The monsters of the Torna Canal only attack females, as a Tule NPC was kind
enough to mention. However, for some odd reason this appears to include Faris
as well, so while Lenna will be glad to spread some of the violence I don't
think a pirate captain would like to be viewed as a woman by anything. No
matter; he gets to mercilessly slaughter the mysogynist squids so it's all
gravy. Another strange thing is that some powerful creature is known to be
sealed here. If you got a powerful, violent creature that you want to seal away,
the only man-made link between Walse and Tule is about the last place you'd
want to lock it up. Oh, well.

Suckers merely use physicals while sometimes using !Ten Arms, which is a
stronger version. They're weak to Lightning-elemental attacks, so the Black
Mages' Thunder spells take good care of them, killing them all in one hit even
when MT'd. They'll only target Lenna and Faris, and whenever both are dead,
they'll simply stop attacking altogether.

The same goes for Octokraken, but this one is a tad more dangerous; not only
does it not have an elemental weakness, it will also randomly use an attack
called Electrocute every second turn which deals about 70 damage to a single
(female) target. Take them out as quickly as possible and you shouldn't see it
in action. Its special is called !Eight Arms and deals 150% damage.

Obviously, the knowledge that only two of your characters are going to be hit
is an advantage. If you have less than four Leather Shoes, give them to the
Lenna and Faris. You could make both Lenna and Faris Knights and use !Guard
continuously while Bartz and Galuf clear out the field, but the monsters really
aren't dangerous enough to warrant extreme caution like that. Just keep an eye
on Lenna and Faris' HP.

The Torna Canal is the only passage to Walse, and it's a dangerous one. The
power of the Wind Crystal was used to seal away a specifically powerful
monster, and since the wind has grown weak monsters have been flooding into the
canal. Gosh, here's hoping we don't run into them! The entrance to the Torna
Canal lies to the south-east of the Wind Shrine, but honestly, it's not very
hard to find.

Bartz will whip out Zok's key and open the gates for you. Lenna's obviously
stupefied. Torna Canal, like so many ambitious young canals of our time, is a
straightforward sailing route. You might be humored to find that the Thief's
Sprint support ability and your normal dashing both work in tandem with Syldra
so you can sail twice as fast :P.

After a 45 degree turn downwards, a whirlpool will appear, apparently caused by
*gasp* the powerful creature that was sealed here by the power of the Wind
Crystal. Syldra's having trouble coping with the stream and succumbs to the
power of the vortex. Out comes the boogie man.

Karlabos
Level: 5, HP: 650, MP: 100
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Potion (common)
Win: Tent
Weakness: Lightning
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Feeler
Special Technique Effect: Paralyze
Vulnerable to: Stop, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Feeler, Tail Screw

Karlabos' most dangerous attack is called Tail Screw. It reduces the HP of a
character to a random single digit (0..9). Whenever this happens, a Cure spell
or a Potion is in order ASAP. Karlabos' !Feeler sets Paralyze, which can be a
nuisance if it touches your White Mage. Karlabos isn't a very difficult boss,
and unless you're slamming your head on the controller in a particularly bizarre
fashion the worst that can happen in this battle is a single character that
falls due to a Tail Screw/physical combo. Karlabos is a great, almost
insurmountable danger in self-inflicted single character challenges, but not
much to worry about in a normal game.

The Black Thunder spell is the prime damage dealer in this battle, while any
character with the Barehanded ability will make great use of it too. All other
attacks come far behind. Should a character with the !Blue ability find him- or
herself at level 5, Goblin Punch deals extreme amounts of damage, otherwise
Aero is the superior attack. You can Steal a Potion, which may not even be
worth your turn. You'll get a Tent after the battle.

It seems the tentacled tormenter it still alive, and even in its damaged state
it's much more powerful than Syldra. Dragging the water creature with it,
Karlabos leaves the ship alone... but without a means of transportation, the
pirate ship is as immobile as a rheumatic snail and without his best friend,
captain Faris Scherwiz is nowhere near as pro-active as he used to be.

The ship is merely floating along now...

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.4.1  The Ship Graveyard
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Skeleton (#12), Carcruthl (#13), Undead Husk (#14), Mindflusher (#15), Siren
  (#245)

  Container contents:
  990 Gil, Antidote x 2, Flail, Potion, Phoenix Down x 2, Tent

  Miscellaneous items:
  Bronze Armor (guaranteed (living) Siren drop), Bronze Shield (guaranteed
  (undead) Siren drop), Elixir (rare Carcruthl drop, rare Undead Husk drop),
  Flame Scroll (rare Mindflusher drop)

  Features:
  World Map

"A gathering place for ruined and scuttled ships... and a nest for the undead."

Waking up, the situation's looking grim. The uncontrollable pirate ship drifted
right into the Ship Graveyard, where bad things happen to good people. Hey, at
least you're fully restored from the fight with Karlabos earlier. You can
always go below deck to sleep, although Galuf's the only person who gets a
bed...

  Outside
  35 % Skeleton
  35 % Skeleton x 3
  30 % Carcruthl x 2, Skeleton x 2

  Inside first shipwreck, (partly) dry parts
  35 % Carcruthl x 2, Skeleton x 2
  35 % Skeleton x 3
  30 % Skeleton

  Submerged shipwrecks
  35 % Undead Husk, Skeleton, Carcruthl
  35 % Skeleton x 3
  23 % Skeleton
   6 % Undead Husk

  Partly submerged room just with Pitfall
  35 % Undead Husk, Mindflusher
  35 % Skeleton x 3, Mindflusher
  23 % Undead Husk
   6 % Mindflusher x 2, Undead Husk

  Shipwrecks after Save Point
  35 % Mindflusher x 2, Undead Husk
  35 % Undead Husk, Skeleton, Carcruthl
  30 % Undead Husk x 2

All the enemies you'll face here are Undead! This means that normally curative
attacks will damage them, life-restoring spells and items will instantly kill
them (unless they're Heavy), they'll almost always be weak to Fire- and Holy-
elemental attacks, they will absorb Poison-elemental attacks, they will have a
butt-load of status immunities and draining spells will have an inverse effect
on them; they'll heal the target and damage the caster. This means the White
Cure spell will damage the Undead while the Blue Vampire spell will heal them
while damaging its caster.

Skeletons are undead foot-soldiers. They attack using Attack and !Critical
Attack, they're weak to Fire-elemental attacks and may rarely drop a Dagger.
Daggers should at this point definitely outclass your Broadswords even though
the menu indicates they're weaker. Goblin Punch users should stick to
Broadswords; Knights that don't use Two-Handed should switch to Daggers where
possible.

Carcruthl merely use Attack. They're undead, look spiffy and are weak to
Lightning-elemental attacks. That about covers it. They rarely drop Elixirs.

Undead Husks are brutes whose bodies are as empty as their brains. Not only are
they undead like all the monsters are in the Ship Graveyard, they're also made
of stone; using a Gold Needle on them will instantly dissolve them by means of
a self-applied Vanish attack. They rarely drop Elixirs like the Carcruthl, but
are weak to Wind-elemental attacks such as Aero. They are the only monster in
this game that are incapable of avoiding White spells at all; which seems
strange since all White spells you have now are unblockable anyway. It must be
a Japanese thing, I dunno.

Mindflusher's !Lick deals normal damage but also adds the Sap status which
shaves away your HP while you stare at it. They may randomly drop a Flame
Scroll, an item that's completely useless to you at this time.

Monks are great here; if you have one or two characters who can case Cure,
you can easily punch your way through this place. 

The vertical plank next to the pirate ship leads to a seemingly uninteresting
rock. Waiting here for a second reveals two more stones however, opening
up a string of rocks leading to a chest containing a Flail. The Flail is one of
the few physical weapons for your White Mage. It's weak and White Mages should
NEVER have to go without offensive spells to cast, but it's back-row compatible
and it gives your White Mage something constructive to do when he or she is out
of MP or Silenced. For some moderately decent physical damage on the White Mage
(certainly better than you'll ever do in the rest of the game), combine Two-
Handed with the Flail. It works.

Track back and continue on to the right. You'll enter another derelict ship
which is filled with fog and spider webs. Go down the stairs (there doesn't
seem to be anything else to do). Before you pass through the door, the light
betrays the existence of a more hidden door which leads to a Tent. Get back and
pass through the door, where Faris will make a fuss about his clothes getting
wet. An odd vain streak he hasn't shown before, but what needs to be done needs
to be done.

Enter the water. There's a little chest you can stand on to get your head above
water, but without one of those stressing YOU HAVE THIS MUCH AIR LEFT bars
there's little point in doing so. Swim/walk down the stairs. Down here, there's
a chest with the classic pirate skull on it; examine it for 990 Gil. Continue
to find a split in the road; the above door leads to a room containing a
Phoenix Down (descend the stairs and try to maneuver to the chest, it's not
that hard) while the other door to more stairs. Continue.

There's a chest here containing a mere Potion, but also some stairs going up.
Finally! The water seems to end in this room. To the tile up-left from the
stairs exit is a broken piece of wood which collapses underneath you when you
stand on it. Don't do it. Exiting gets you to a room filled with old, moldy
food, four beds and some chests; the Chosen Warriors declare it to be a safe
haven so we can assume it is exactly that. Lenna gets some me-time to go dry
her clothes, and the boys are left to do the same. Faris doesn't want to
cooperate, Bartz and Galuf shrug it off as nonsense, and finally the reason
behind all the oddness is revealed.

If the flowing purple hair, infatuated pirates and fellow Chosen Warriors,
attacking Torna Canal monsters and huge chest hadn't already convinced you it
was the case, you now learn Faris is a girl. Good gosh. Washed into the hands
of the pirates one day, she pretended to be a boy. The amount of questions you
probably have at this point is enormous and never answered, so let's accept
this glaringly illogical plot twist and continue on. You all rest and get fully
restored by it.

The next room features a Save Point that you can use. When you taste sweet,
fresh air again you can go to the right or down; to the right is nothing, so
let's go down. There's a piece o' ship here with a door which you can ignore if
you want, but I really really suggest you don't. Let's get in there.

The first thing you'll see lying around is an object that's just a shade too
bright to be part of the scenery; it's a World Map. You'll notice later this is
a magical World Map which adapts to your current situation, but we'll get there
later. Grab it now. If you miss it here you'll have another chance to pick it
up in the future at another location, but why skip it now? Even further down is
a storage room with three chests containing two Antidotes and a Phoenix Down.
Here, Mindflushers and Undead Husks abound, both of which drop interesting stuff
and give 2 to 3 ABP in their formations, so if you want to Job-train, go ahead.
Time to go back up.

Continuing, there's what appears to be a dead end with a chest. Opening the
chest reveals the remainder of the ship, because that is a logical thing to
happen when you open chests. Walk up to the other end of the ship to see a
string of stepping stones that's just too perfect to NOT be the exit out of
here, so you can go prepare for a boss fight :)

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.4.2  The battle with Siren
**********************************

Something's not right here. Stella Klauser appears, mother to Bartz, and just
as Bartz is about to check up on the situation his body goes limp. King Tycoon
his appearance would have been more believable, but his presence in this
context is alarming as we already know that Stella passed away at some time in
the past.

Strangely enough, Faris seems extremely taken by the appearance of King Tycoon;
is there ANY normal thought process going on in that girl's head?

The system falls down a little when the illusion created for Galuf doesn't ring
any bells with him; amnesia, remember? Suddenly 'something' floats from the
limp bodies of Bartz, Lenna and Faris, which the suddenly appearing Siren
declares to be their souls. Bad shit! Galuf resolves the problematic situation
by slapping. You'd hate to be married to the guy.

Siren
Level: 2, HP: 900, MP: 200
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Nothing
Win: Bronze Armor
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Paralyze, Confuse,
  Berserk, Stop, Slow
Attacks: Protect, Cure, Libra, Thunder, Blizzard, Silence, Sleep, Haste, Slow

Siren (Undead)
Level: 2, HP: 900, MP: 200
Defense: 12, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Nothing
Win: Bronze Shield
Absorbs: Poison
Weakness: Fire
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy, Undead
Special Technique: !Venomous Clasp
Special Technique Effect: Adds Poison
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Darkness, Slow, Regen
Attacks: Attack, !Venomous Clasp

Siren works like this. She takes three turns, during which she will do this:

1st turn: 33 % each: Silence, Slow, Haste
2nd turn: 33 % each: Cure, Blizzard, Libra
3rd turn: 33 % each: Protect, Sleep, Thunder

Then, she'll turn into her Undead form, which is clearly visible due to the
text flashing across the screen and Siren herself turning red. In this state,
she'll also take three turns of attacking with either Attack or !Venomous Clasp
before returning back to 'normal'.

Siren is pretty much immune to your magical attacks in her normal state, so if
nobody needs healing this is where the Flail for the White Mage can come in
relative handy. Pound away with your Knights, Monks and Thieves and have your
mages...yeah, they're better off attacking too, it's just that they're nowhere
near as good as the more physically inclined Jobs. When Siren changes into her
Undead form, the fun's starting.

Undead Siren receives incredible Defense so your physical attacks become next
to useless. If you want characters without magical abilities to do *some*
damage, Potions inflict a constant 50 damage. The Fire spell is obviously the
most powerful spell you can cast on U. Siren, but Aero, Cure and Blizzard or
Thunder spells also work pretty well (in that order). Note that throwing a
Phoenix Down on Undead Siren will NOT kill her. Life-bringing items and spells
still kill Undead enemies in this game as it does in every other Final Fantasy
game, it's just that the trick doesn't work if the Undead target is also Heavy.

Since the Bronze Armor is an overall better and more expensive item than the
Bronze Shield I might just advise you to shoot for defeating Siren in her
normal state, but the difference is marginal.

For some trivia, Siren would later make a few appearances as a summon monster,
often focusing around setting the Silence status and/or dealing minor damage.
She's a bit sexed-up as one of your allies, though, and not quite as Undead and
creepy.

When you're done, you're done. It's over! Go do something now, go read a book
about airplanes. They can fly and are heavy. Oh yeah, and don't forget to cure
possibly Poisoned characters, their HP slowly drops to 1 while you're walking.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.5.1  The lands of Carwen
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Gatling (#16), Big Horn (#17), Tatou (#18), Garula (#20)

  Near Ship Graveyard and Carwen:
  35 % Gatling
  35 % Gatling x 2, Big Horn
  23 % Tatou x 2
   6 % Big Horn, Gatling, Tatou

  Forest around North Mountain:
  35 % Tatou x 2
  35 % Big Horn, Gatling, Tatou
  23 % Tatou x 2, Gatling
   6 % Big Horn x 2

When you exit the Ship Graveyard, you'll find yourselves on solid land again.
Your destination lies to the south, but the journey is not without its perils...

Gatlings will normally just Attack, but if you hit them with an Attack of your
own they'll counter with !Needle, a more powerful physical attack. They'll
rarely drop the Gold Needles you so sorely missed versus the Undead Husks.

Big Horns attack with Attack and (shocker) !Horn, which is a more powerful
physical attack. If you hit them with a Fire-elemental attack they survive,
they'll use Flee immediately to leave the battlefield.

Tatou are big ugly lizards weak to Ice-elemental attacks. That about covers it.
They drop Tents.

Note that on the small patch west of Carwen, you can meet Garula, a passive
massive non-aggressive tapir. Even though he doesn't attack you, he has a
Bestiary entry so you'll probably want to beat him up. The lovable oaf
appearing here could be considered a bug, since he should really just be found
in another area; take your chagrin over this fact out on the helpless creature.

Oh yeah, the walkthrough. Carwen's to the south; just stick to the coastal
line to the west and you'll see it no problem.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.5.2  The town of Carwen
**********************************

  Container contents:
  1000 Gil, Antidote, Frost Rod

  Features:
  Piano

Carwen is an entirely uninteresting black hole of a town, but at least they're
playing Harvest Hoedown, so that's a plus. Now I was just informed by Merriam-
Webster that a Hoedown is a kind of square dance; and here I always thought of
prostitutes whenever I came across the term. Yeah, it sure is funny having a
foreign writer...

Item Shop:
Potion                40 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Tent                 250 Gil
 Yeah, 's shtuff. You could buy some Eye Drops, and make sure to buy some Gold
Needles as the monsters in the upcoming dungeon have the power of petrification.

Weapon Shop:
Dagger               300 Gil
Long Sword           480 Gil
Rod                  200 Gil
Staff                200 Gil
 Your Knight(s) will really enjoy the upgrade in offensive power when you buy a
new sweet Long Sword for them. At least they're no longer carrying the weakest
sword in the game, eh? Your Blue Mages are less of a necessity to put a better
sword on, but you'll like the increase in Goblin Punch power.

Armor Shop:
Bronze Shield        290 Gil
Bronze Helmet        250 Gil
Bronze Armor         400 Gil
Copper Cuirass       350 Gil
Cotton Robe          300 Gil
 It's fairly straightforward as to what to buy for which characters.
Everything's flat-out better than Leather equipment so check your current Jobs
and give them their suited defensive upgrade. The only point of debate is your
Blue Mage, which I'd rather give a Copper Cuirass than a Cotton Robe. Even
though the Cotton Robe is better on statistics (+ 2 Defense and + 4 Magic
Defense to + 3 Defense and + 2 Magic Defense of the Copper Cuirass) the enemies
in this part will use physical attacks only so Defense is more important.

Magic Shop:
Fire                 150 Gil
Blizzard             150 Gil
Thunder              150 Gil
Sleep                300 Gil
Cure                 180 Gil
Poisona               90 Gil
Silence              280 Gil
Protect              280 Gil
 The new spells for sale here are Sleep for your Black Magic spellbook and
Silence and Protect for your White casters. There's no reason to skip them
here, especially since all three spells will be valuable to you in both the
near and the far future.

Take a nap at the Inn if you're so inclined to restore from your long journey
through the Ship Graveyard. Now, walk around town and work your Chosen Warrior
magic; talk to NPCs and find the hidden items. There's an Antidote in one of
the five barrels to the south of the Pub (this one: 0x000). A much more
important treasure is the Frost Rod. Stand in front of the Pub sign and walk
all the way down until you can't go any further; now, go left and down until
you reach the far bottom crate containing an Frost Rod.

The Frost Rod is one of the decent amount of weapons that give a damage
increase to a specific element. This one boosts Ice (you're kidding!) by 50 %,
making the Black Mage a superior offensive caster than the White Mage (since
the Black Mage can equip it) and making the Ice spell the superior attack
unless the target is weak to Fire or Bolt. Always keep track of what elemental
rod you're carrying and cast accordingly, as 150 % damage is really sweet.

The menu says that the Rod will sometimes cast the Blizzaga spell. This is
grade-A balloney! The Rod can be used as an Item from the menu (when held, open
'Item' and press UP, you must equip it) to release all the Ice magic from the
Rod and scatter a Blizzaga spell across the screen, destroying the Rod in the
process. Blizzaga spells are really powerful, but now that the Frost Rod is
still a luxury item it's not worth it to break it in combat.

Let's get the story rollin'. Talk to the green-haired lady to the south of the
Pub, who'll tell you what we already know; there's the Kingdom of Walse to the
south, a country amplifying the Water Crystal much like how Tycoon amplified
the Wind Crystal. If we don't stop them soon it might just break on us, so we
need to get there ASAP. However, we can't go by sea without Syldra or the wind.

And we can't go by land or sea...

Talking to the dock workers will have Bartz wondering about this constantly.

There's now another green-haired woman near the Pub who talks about her
husband. Enter the Pub. There's a new piano here! Play it, you still suck. If
you have someone with the Find Passages support ability (Thieves have this
ability inherently), you can see a hidden passage leading to a secret room to
the far left of the Pub's ground floor. In here, the top grey pot contains 1000
Gil. You can also get behind the bar this way, but there's nothing there for
you. Now, go to the top floor to find the man who raves about flying dragons.
He raves about flying dragons! It must be Tycoon's Wind Drake as all other Wind
Drake are extinct. A plan is quickly devised. Poisonous purple plants or not, we
must find the Wind Drake so that we can travel to Walse.

Make sure to drop by the Item Shop and purchase a few Gold Needle items.

Leave the town of Carwen and travel north to North Mountain where the Wind
Drake is supposedly residing.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.6.1  North Mountain
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Rock Slug (#21), Gaelicat (#22), Cockatrice (#23), Headstone (#24), Magissa
  (#246), Forza (#247)

  Container contents:
  Gold Needle, Phoenix Down

  Miscellaneous items:
  Power Drink (guaranteed Forza drop), Silver Specs (common Headstone steal),
  Whip (guaranteed Magissa drop)

  Spells:
  Aero, Flash

  Slope leading into first cave, second slope:
  35 % Rock Slug, Rock Slug
  35 % Gaelicat
  23 % Rock Slug, Rock Slug, Gaelicat
   6 % Gaelicat, Gaelicat, Gaelicat

  1st cave and 2nd cave:
  35 % Rock Slug, Rock Slug, Gaelicat
  35 % Gaelicat, Gaelicat, Gaelicat
  23 % Headstone, Headstone, Rock Slug, Rock Slug
   6 % Rock Slug, Rock Slug

  3rd slope (Purple flowers):
  35 % Cockatrice, Rock Slug, Rock Slug
  35 % Headstone, Headstone, Rock Slug, Rock Slug
  23 % Cockatrice
   6 % Cockatrice, Cockatrice

  4th slope (Magissa location):
  35 % Cockatrice
  35 % Gaelicat, Gaelicat, Gaelicat
  23 % Gaelicat
   6 % Gaelicat

  Summit (Wind Drake location):
  35 % Cockatrice
  35 % Cockatrice, Cockatrice
  23 % Headstone, Headstone, Headstone, Headstone, Headstone
   6 % Headstone, Headstone, Rock Slug, Rock Slug

Rock Slugs are boring. They do battle, and they're weak to Fire-elemental
attacks, including and solely limited to your Black Fire spells.

Gaelicats are the most prolific enemies on the mountain, and by their very
nature of being freaky sentient cats who try to employ leaves as primitive
wings, they are Floating, which is still of no concern to you. They may evade
your physical attacks, so if you have unblockable attacks to favor, favor them.
Their Special is called !Cat Scratch and is essentially the same attack as the
most powerful physical attack FF VI's Wild Boy Gau was able to perform. It's
much weaker here, though.

Cockatrices are the most dangerous enemies here, since they have a 33% chance
every turn to use (alongside Attack and !Dive which is merely a stronger
version of their physical attack) Beak. Beak sets the Petrify status ailment,
which renders the target unable to take action, unable to be targeted by any
'attack' that doesn't remove the Petrify effect, and is marked as 'defeated',
which means that the character in question won't obtain ABP or Experience when
he exits the battle Petrified, and that a team full of Petrified characters will
get you a Game Over. Cure Petrified characters with a Gold Needle as soon as
you can. You can steal them from the Cockatrices themselves, too.

Headstone are the most interesting enemies to face around here as they'll be
nice to you if you know how to work them. First off, they have common Silver
Specs on them. Silver Specs share the Leather Shoes its + 1 Defense and + 1
Magic Defense and protects against the Darkness status to boot. Why Leather
Shoes are always favored by selecting Optimum is a mystery as they are flat-out
inferior to the Silver Specs. Headstone aren't very dangerous so make sure to
Steal Silver Specs whenever Headstone and Thieves meet (obviously, four is
plenty). The other notable feature of Headstone is the fact it often tries to
use Flash while not having the MP to do so. Luckily, feeding them an Ether will
give them the MP to use Flash so your Blue Mage(s) can learn it. Know that the
Learning character needs to be affected by the spell in order to learn it, so
if you equip him with Silver Specs he won't be able to learn the attack. Oh
yeah, and they nullify Fire-, Ice- and Wind-elemental attacks, so Thunder is
the way to go.

If you have a Thief, there's no reason to skip on Stealing 4 Silver Specs at
this point of the game, and if you have a character who can learn Blue Magic,
be sure to use an Ether on one of the Headstones to have it cast Flash, as it's
a truly useful attack to be able to perform. Make sure that your character in
question isn't wearing the Silver Specs you stole, as he or she won't be able
to learn the spell if it has no effect on the character with Learning set.

This is a very simple and straightforward path leading up, alternating through
caves and slopes. The first room contains two chests containing a Phoenix Down
and a Gold Needle. Head south first for the Phoenix Down, then follow the other
path for the Gold Needle and the exit. After a slope and another cave you'll
wind up on a slope filled with purple plants which we have been warned about by
Carwen NPC; these little guys are poisonous. Indeed, stepping on them will set
the Poison status ailment on every character in your party, so avoid them at all
costs. If you take a wrong turn immediately heal up with your White caster's
Poisona spell. This is where those blasted Cockatrices start to show up, by the
way, so keep your eye out for Petrification.

You now pass through a cave with a Save Point. Use it, there's something
exciting about to happen. On the next slope, Lenna will spot her father's
Mythril Helmet lying on the ground and will be immediately shot by a poisoned
arrow when she tries to pick it up.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.6.2  The battle with Magissa
**********************************

Meet Magissa, a powerful sorceress of some sort who came looking for the Wind
Drake to kill it and sell its horn, together with her freakish mutant
'husband'. She blocks your path by letting a part of the mountain crash down,
but this isn't enough to stop Faris. She finds a way there and soon enough
you'll be facing the magical mistress herself.

Oh! Look at that outfit!

Magissa
Level: 8, HP: 650, MP: 200
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Win: Whip
Creature: Humanoid
Special Technique: !Critical Attack
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Silence, Stop, Slow
Attacks: !Critical Attack, Thunder, Drain, Fire, Blizzard, Aero, Regen

Forza
Level: 8, HP: 850, MP: 100
Defense: 3, Magic Defense: 5
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Potion (common)
Win: Power Drink (always)
Status: Float
Creature: Heavy, Humanoid
Special Technique: !Tackle
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk,
  Silence, Stop, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Tackle

Magissa attacks you with a specific set of spells, which go like this:

1st turn: 33 % each: Fire, Ice, Thunder
2nd turn: 33 % each: Aero, !Critical Attack, Drain

When Magissa has 300 Hit Points left or less, her first action will consist out
of calling her hubby. I'm not sure of a seven-foot elemental golem or whatever
the hell Forza is counts as a hubby, but surely any woman who takes a liking to
whips can be counted on to spend her life with some guy who listens to her
every command so even if Forza is humanoid, he's still dead on the inside. At
any rate, as soon as Forza has entered the battlefield Magissa's first action
is casting Regen on him. Afterwards, she'll continue with her normal spell AI
script.

Note that it is entirely possible to not see Forza at all if you manage to
shave off Magissa's remaining 300 HP before she is able to take a turn, in
which case you'll be screwed out of Forza's admittedly unimportant 100 % drop,
as well as his Bestiary entry.

Forza just uses physical attacks, either 66 % Attack or 33 % !Tackle, which is
150 % times as strong. His physical attacks are quite powerful, especially
!Tackle can hurt. Thieves and Monks had better beware.

How to take care of them? Magissa falls to the Silence status ailment, so any
White Mage or other character with the level 2 White command may cast it on her
to stop all of her spells. Forza is vulnerable to Sleep, so Black Mages or
level 2 Black casters may utilize that. The Blue spell Flash works on both
targets, and while Magissa won't suffer from it much in her magic-based
strategy the blinded Forza will suddenly be hitting a lot less effectively when
he grumpily wakes up from the you-induced Sleep status. A Protect spell on
those in the Front Row is also not a bad idea, especially the frail Thieves can
benefit.

After the vicious beauty and the beast have been dispatched, you'll obtain up
to two future-oriented items: a Whip from Magissa and provided Forza made a
showing, a Power Drink. The Power Drink is an item that can be consumed by the
!Drink command you'll gain access to later in the game and the Whip is a weapon
for the Beastmaster, a Job you'll gain access to later.

The Whip is the strongest weapon you have at this point, and it's made even
more powerful by the fact it deals the same amount of damage from the Back Row
and the fact it randomly has the additional effect of Paralyzing Magic
Beast-type creatures. You could switch a character to the Freelancer Class and
equip it right now, but you don't need this weapon at this time and it's
certainly not worth the loss of ABP being a Freelancer entails.

Check that menu description of the Whip, a reference to this:

 crack that whip
 give the past the slip
 step on a crack
 break your momma's back
 when a problem comes along
 you must whip it
 before the cream sits out too long
 you must whip it
 when something's going wrong
 you must whip it
 "Whip it" - Devo (1980)

You can look up the music video, but promise me to never look at it with a head
full of acid. Note that the Mythril Helmet has been added to your inventory.

Walking on gets you to a cliff where Hiryu, the last Wind Drake of this world
is resting. Lenna'll casually throw her life away to heal the Wind Drake, but
thankfully the Wind Drake has restorative powers previously not mentioned.
Silly Lenna and her silly antics, walking in poisonous flowers like that.
Bartz' acrophobia is subject to everybody's hilarity; remember to kill them all
when they least expect it

Some trivia here; "Hiryu" was, in the original Japanese game, the species' name
while no individual Wind Drake had a name of their own. Hiryu means "flying
dragon" in moonspeak.

You automatically take off. This is the Wind Drake modus transporti of this
game. The Wind Drake can't land in deserts, the sea, forests, mountains and the
handicapped zone. What you can do is fly a circle around Carwen to show
everybody the guy who tipped us off was telling the truth. Sure enough,
entering Carwen and talking to the guy reveals that he's swimming in
narcissistic him-love, but he'll do that even if you didn't flex your Wind
Drake so we are not to blame. Walse lies to the south. Engage!


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.7.1  Home sweet home; Castle Tycoon
**********************************

  Container contents:
  Cottage x 3, Diamond Bell, Elixir x 2, Ether x 2, Hi-Potion, Ashura, Maiden's
  Kiss, Phoenix Down x 2, Shuriken

  Miscellaneous items:
  Healing Staff

What you say? Advance the plot? Say now Nancy, that's dangerous thinking. We're
going to let everybody at Castle Tycoon know that Lenna is okay and that the
King is down and out for the moment. The awesome, awesome treasures that lie
waiting for you here could in theory have something to do with the fact I want
you to go there, but only in theory, as no amount of treasure could every
compete with character development! Fly south 'til you see a new town and a
castle; this is Walse, and we'll go here in the near future. Head west from
Walse by going north over the mountain range. Keep heading west over a desert
land mass, then head southwest until you find a gap in the mountains. You're
back at the start of the game! Fly in and follow the available path counter-
clockwise until you fly over the meteorite. You're done!

As soon as you enter the courtyard but before you enter the castle, I want you
to go find two super-hidden treasures. In the east wall lies a hidden passage
not even the Find Passages support ability detects. Pass through it to find a
hidden room of Castle Tycoon which contains two Cottages, which you can think
of as Supertents. Should you try to open these chests for the first time when
you have released Lone Wolf (you'll come across Lone Wolf later), you'll find
these chests to be empty. Trace back your steps to the courtyard and enter the
castle.

Entering the castle will get you a talk with the Chancellor of Castle Tycoon.
It seems nowadays' armies are having a tough time coping with all the monsters
that for some reason appear in greater numbers than ever. Partly out of a wish
to save the world and partly out of a stubborn refusal to officially take over
the throne, even for the time being, Lenna does not comply to the Chancellors
offer to stay home and rule over Tycoon. The night is an offer she can't
refuse, however.

In the night: could the bishounen shemale pirate captain Faris Scherwiz really
be a princess? She denies it all, but when you think of it it's really TOO
CRAZY NOT TO WORK.

When you wake, step outside and descend the stairs to find a Hi-Potion in one
of the grey pots. Cross the great hall of Castle Tycoon and ascend the right
wing to find the study, where old teacher hag Jenica mentions Lenna's sister
Sarisa, who disappeared at a young age at sea. Oh, the subtle hints! In this
room, a plethora of treasures in the pots and crates: a Cottage, an Ether, a
Phoenix Down and an Elixir. Leave this place.

When you find yourself in the great hall once more, enter the throne room and
enter the right door (to the left, it's just Lenna's featureless room and the
room of Alexander Tycoon, which you're not allowed to enter). Ascend the stairs
to find six grey pots, containing in various intensity: an Ether, an Elixir, a
Phoenix Down and a Maiden's Kiss. Ascend even further to reach the scenery of
the opening cutscene; the view sure is pretty up here, ain't it? Now, go back
down and go outside.

A guard previously blocking a passageway to the left of the entrance has now
moved a tile, giving you the freedom to explore it. You'll wind up in the
surprisingly empty Storage room, but your Find Passages support ability detects
a hidden passage! Even if you don't have it on you, that switch is too tempting
to resist. Flick it and enter the hidden passage you can now enter. Behold, the
Chancellor (did he lock himself in for you to find him?).

The Chancellor gives you the Healing Staff, a Staff which casts Cura on the
target when you Attack with it. It's a great free way of healing your
characters, but if your White Mage doesn't have offensive spells at his or her
disposal he or she really does become offensively impotent with this thing, so
you should decide if it's for you or not. The remainder of the chests contain
sweet-ass weapons including a Diamond Bell, a Shuriken and an Ashura.

The Shuriken can only be used by the !Throw command of the Ninja, so it isn't
of any concern at this point of the game. The Diamond Bell is, as its name would
apply, a Bell. Bells are odd weapons that randomly deal between 50 % and 100 %
of their normally calculated damage, depends on the wielders Magic Power and to
a lesser extent the wielders Agility and factors Magic Defense as opposed to
Defense, all this while being unblockable and not working when Silence is in
effect. End of story: hardly useful, and none of your current Jobs can equip
it, but it does deal the same amount of damage from the Back Row making it far
superior magical weapons than Rods and Staves.

The weakest katana is the Ashura. Don't let the word 'weakest' give an
indication of its current power, however. The Ashura is an incredibly powerful
weapon at this stage of the game, which has the current disadvantage of being
only useable by Freelancer class characters. Katanas use the 'basic' Sword
damage formula, which makes it about twice as strong as the Long Swords from
the get-go. To add sugar to the deal, all Katanas have the ability to randomly
inflict Critical Hits (which deal double damage and pierce Defense). This
particular Katana's CH ratio is 12 %. As much as it pains me to say it, I don't
recommend using it as you encounter nothing dangerous enough to need the Ashura,
hence the loss in ABP progress isn't worth using this awesome weapon for.

We're done here, but we had a blast. We've made a grand detour through both the
Ship Graveyard and Carwen, but we're finally ready. Let's fly to Walse now, it's
to the east.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.8.1  The country of Walse
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Gatling (#16), Big Horn (#17), Tatou (#18), Bandersnatch (#19), Garula (#20)

  Container contents:
  Silver Specs

  Grasslands and forests:
  35 % Tatou x2, Gatling
  35 % Big Horn x2
  23 % Gatling
   6 % Bandersnatch

Walse is a thriving town blessed by water so pure, monsters won't come near it.
This doesn't go for the creature Garula though, friendly big tusked teddybear
that it is. If you descend the stairs to the right of the entrance, into the
moat, and enter the house in the south-west corner of the town of Walse, you'll
find Silver Specs in the grey pot.

One of the frogs in the pond throws a sweet Muppets reference at you; maybe
this is just a town dude who is under the influence of the Black Toad spell?
Before debates start raging, let me assure you that the game proves you don't
have to possess a crystal shard to be able to cast magic (else the Magic
Shops'd be REALLY, REALLY hard-pressed to find customers).

Magic Shop:
Slow                  80 Gil
Regen                100 Gil
Mute                 320 Gil
Haste                320 Gil
Chocobo              300 Gil
Sylph                350 Gil
Remora               250 Gil
 Speaking of the Magic Shop, they're selling a brand new brand of Magic you are
at this point unable to wield. The first four belong to the Time Mage, the last
three to the Summoner. Man, this doesn't bode well for the continued existence
of the Water Crystal...at any rate, there's no reason to buy them at this point
so don't waste your Gil just yet.

Weapon Shop:
Battle Axe           650 Gil
Long Sword           480 Gil
Dagger               300 Gil
 The only new feature is the Battle Axe, of which the average damage output is
similar to that of the Long Sword on a Freelancer classed character and
inferior to one using a Whip. Regardless, you need to switch to the Freelancer
class when you want to use it, and it's not particularly grand, so don't.

Armor Shop:
Iron Shield          390 Gil
Iron Helmet          350 Gil
Iron Armor           500 Gil
Kenpo Gi             450 Gil
Cotton Robe          300 Gil
 Buy as you see fit. Don't forget that you found a Mythril Helmet back at North
mountain so buying a Iron Helmet may be pointless. The Kenpo Gi is your first
piece of armor with a stat boost: + 1 on Strength.

Item Shop:
Potion                40 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Tent                 250 Gil
 Make sure to dive into the Item Shop and buy a few Maiden's Kisses. There'll
be Toad status ailments soon. It's a funny thing you can buy kisses as an item
to carry with you; it could prove THE solution to that one well-meaning virgin
friend everybody seems to have.

There's nothing else to do here, so let's talk to King Walse and have this
stupid, stupid using the Water Crystal for the nation's welfare stopped.

...

I'd be like telling Mister President of about every freaking country in the
world that using gasoline is a big bad no-no, but whatever.

While there is no reason to walk on the Overworld map now since you can fly
between every location you want to visit, I want to point out that the
encounters here are identical to those around Carwen with the exception of the
lands surrounding the Tower of Walse to the North. Here, Garula appears, the
passive and friendly creature that walks in and out of Walse. You can beat him
up for free ABP (a single one!), but why not leave him alone?

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.8.2  Castle Walse and the coming of the second meteorite
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Elf Toad (#25), Ice Soldier (#26), Jackanapes (#30), Ice Commander (#248),
  Shiva (#249)

  Container contents:
  490 Gil, 1000 Gil x 2, Elven Mantle, Phoenix Down, Tent

  Miscellaneous items:
  Mythril Sword (common Ice Soldier steal), Frost Rod (guaranteed Shiva drop)

  Features:
  Lone Wolf

  Time Spells:
  Speed

  Summon Spells:
  Shiva

  Blue Spells:
  Moon Flute (in theory), Pond's Chorus

When you enter the castle, there's a double wooden door to the right of the
hallway and some stairs going down. Pass through the double wooden doors and in
the next room, go around the stairs going up to the stairs going down. There are
hidden treasures here, containing a Phoenix Down, a Tent and 490 Gil. Track back
to the main hall.

There's an invisible timer ticking here, people! No, not really, I mean
plot-wise. So let's say we forget about minor things for now and waltz right
into King Walse' throne room, slam our fist on the table and demand
discontinuation of the amplifying process of the Water Crystal. This aggression
will not stand, man.

King Walse: No.

As a male writer, I'm obviously not allowed to say this, but there's something
undeniably cute about King Walse. Maybe it's the fact he has no mouth, maybe
it's the fact he's literally draped in colorful, partly purple robes, maybe
it's that pink ball on his head or maybe it's just the way he raises his right
hand in his Hey Ho Let's Go stance, but to me he is jey-ust precious! He's like
a fluffy little pimp in that get-up.

   iOS/Android: They left me heartbroken with this new rendition of King Walse.
   He looks like what'd be left of Carrot Top if he grew a beard.

At any rate, there's a new meteor now, and here's hoping the falling meteors
have no causal relation to the shattering crystals. King Walse moves out with
some guards to check up on Walse Tower.

To recap: King Walse, king of the country of Walse whose only mentionable city
is called Walse, has left Walse Castle to check up on the Tower of Walse.

Enough with the Walse! Let's follow the King out. Since the three notable
features of Walse Castle are best left for a later time you can just walk out
of the castle, climb on the Wind Drake and fly to the meteor. I talk about the
meteor in the next chapter. If you must know about Jackanapes, the Summoned
Monster Shiva that is sealed in the purified water by the Water Crystal and
Lone Wolf the pickpocket, read on.

When you enter the castle, you can continue on, enter the double wooden door or
descend the stairs. For all three features, we must descend the stairs.

Going even further down will get us to the cells. To the far right is a
sinister old man, but on the left is where the action is happening. Lone Wolf
the famous thief asks you if you want to release him. You could do so, but
there are no upsides and only downsides to this. Once released, Lone Wolf will
roam the world again, causing a few items to be removed from chests when YOU
get there. These items include: a Blitz Whip and four Cottages, spread
throughout the lands. Especially the Blitz Whip is annoying to lose as the only
other way to obtain one is as a rare steal late in the game (as in: the Blitz
Whip will be long useless by then).

So don't. If you DO, however, you can enter his cell and check the grey pot,
which contains... nothing! In addition, the door will close behind you, forcing
you to wait in the locked cell for a while before the door opens again (by
itself, no less). Tight security these guys are running here. The blue-haired
guy on the far left also asks you if you want to release him, but when you say
"Yes" he'll get so excited he runs into the wall and passes out (which really
is funny to watch a couple of hundred times on a rainy day).

Get back up and find the other stairs going down in the upper-right corner. Let
me tell you something about the dreaded demon Jackanapes.

Jackanapes
Level: 20, HP: 666, MP: 5000
Defense: 50, Magic Defense: 50
Evasion: 50%, Magic Evasion: 50%
Steal: Elixir (rare), Iron Draft (common)
Win: Phoenix Down (rare)
Absorbs: Fire, Ice, Lightning, Poison, Holy, Earth, Wind, Water
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Moon Flute

Jackanapes always attacks from behind, so unless you have a Thief in your
party at the time (or somebody with the Vigilance support ability) you'll feel
the effects of that. J-man will attack physically and with !Critical Attack
(normal damage) and counter any damage done to him with a Moon Flute attack,
an MT attack that sets Berserk on your characters. Your Blue Mage(s) can learn
this move, but since you very likely won't be able to end this battle by a
means other than escaping, there's no way to learn it at this point.

Jackanapes, while not unbeatable in the full sense of the word, presents so
much of a hindrance that defeating it at this point would require incredible
amounts of leveling and luck. Jackanapes absorbs all elements, and since your
only non-elemental spell is the physical Goblin Punch, you'll have to rely on
physical attacks only to be able to damage this guy. Its 50 % Evade rating is
bad enough, but with 50 Defense any monster buys itself an insurance policy
that unless the attack in question is barrier-piercing, it's not going to leave
an actual mark. The only way to hurt Jackanapes at this point is by means of a
Critical Hit; the Fists have an 8 % chance (for God's sake, use Barehanded) and
the Ashura has a 12 % CH ratio, but that's all you have. And you just don't
have the HP and power at this point to rely on this. You'll be able to defeat
this guy later, but for now I suggest leaving the treasures here alone, which
contain the Time Speed spell for your future Time Mage(s), 1000 Gil, another
1000 Gil and an Elven Mantle.

Note: if you know this game and know damn sure you want the Chicken Knife
later, there's no downside to equipping a Thief with the !Flee ability and run
from every battle, thus obtaining the treasures easily. Normal running is not
as effective; Jackanapes will likely kill at least one character before you
manage to escape, and using a Phoenix Down for every encounter gets pricey very
fast.

The Elven Mantle is a nice Accessory which gives some nifty Elf-like stat
boosts, including a 5 % Magic Evade you won't see in the menu. Its real power,
however, is the fact that any character wearing the Elven Mantle will have an
extra hit determination check where a rough 33 % of any blockable physical
attack sent his or her way is stopped (with a spiffy cape animation, no less).
It's really sweet and in my eyes superior to current and most future Defense/
Magic Defense raising Accessories.

The final feature is the road leading to Shiva. You could prepare for Walse
Tower by learning the Blue spell Pond's Chorus here from the Elf Toads and
Stealing common Mythril Swords from the Ice Soldiers, but since you can do this
preparation in the first few battles of Walse Tower itself I see no reason to
go out of your way and do it here. Shiva herself is fairly difficult to defeat
at this point and you might as well do it later. She's hardly helpful to you
without a character being able to summon her in battle. Let's get to that
bloody tower already, thee punkster!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.8.3  The golden warrior and the tower of Walse
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Elf Toad (#25), Ice Soldier (#26), Ricard Mage (#27), Wyvern (#28), Pas de
  Seul (#29), Garula (#250)

  Container contents:
  Ether, Maiden's Kiss, Silk Robe, Silver Armlet

  Miscellaneous items:
  Flame Rod (rare Ricard Mage drop), Mythril Knife (common Wyvern steal),
  Mythril Sword (common Ice Soldier steal)

  Blue Spells:
  Pond's Chorus

  1st floor:
  58 % Elf Toad, Elf Toad, Ice Soldier
  42 % Ricard Mage, Ice Soldier, Ice Soldier

  2nd floor:
  35 % Ricard Mage, Ice Soldier, Ice Soldier
  35 % Ricard Mage, Ricard Mage, Ricard Mage
  30 % Elf Toad, Elf Toad, Ice Soldier

  3rd floor:
  35 % Wyvern
  35 % Ricard Mage, Ice Soldier, Ice Soldier
  30 % Wyvern, Pas de Seul

  4th floor:
  58 % Wyvern, Pas de Seul
  42 % Pas de Seul

  5th floor:
  35 % Pas de Seul, Ricard Mage, Ice Soldier
  35 % Wyvern, Pas de Seul
  23 % Pas de Seul
   6 % Pas de Seul, Pas de Seul

  6th floor:
  35 % Pas de Seul, Pas de Seul
  35 % Ricard Mage, Ice Soldier, Ice Soldier
  30 % Ricard Mage, Ricard Mage, Ricard Mage

  7th floor:
  70 % Wyvern, Wyvern
  30 % Elf Toad, Elf Toad, Elf Toad

  8th floor:
  35 % Wyvern, Wyvern
  35 % Ricard Mage, Ricard Mage, Ricard Mage
  23 % Ice Soldier, Ice Soldier
   6 % Wyvern

Elf Toads are weak to Ice-elemental attacks, so any Black Mage with the Frost
Rod should be taking them out easily. MT'd, the Blizzard spell isn't powerful
enough to kill them, not even with the Frost Rod. When an Elf Toad is alone, it
will randomly (33 %) start to use Pond's Chorus, which sets the Toad status.
Once your Blue Mage has been hit by the attack, you can kill it and you'll have
learned the Blue spell Pond's Chorus. Toad completely disables the enemy; it
stops special techniques, and physical attack and physical defense drops to 0.
It's nice enough, especially versus the boss we're about to face. Note that
the highest density of Elf Toads can be found on the very first floor, so it's
best to learn the spell there.

Ice Soldiers attack physically and randomly cast a Blizzard spell, but that's
nothing too threatening. What's really important here is Ice Soldier's affinity
for all things sword; not only will it rarely drop a Long Sword (lame), it has
common Mythril Swords (awesome) for you to steal, which are superior to your
current blades. You'll note the difference, especially with Two-handed, so make
sure to get one for every potential sword-wielder in your party.

Ricard Mages are arcane assholes. Here's what they do:

1st turn: 33 % each: Sleep, Slow, Stop
2nd turn: 33 % each: Cure, Drain, Attack

They are vulnerable to Silence, but casting Silence on them all just won't do
all the time so flat-out killing them before they get to the Drain spell is a
better strategy. The interesting thing about them is the fact they rarely (the
same old 1/16) drop a Flame Rod, which is simply the Fire-elemental Rod of the
Frost Rod you found in Carwen. They upgrade your Fire-elemental attacks by
50%, so stick to Fire when you've got it equipped. Note that Ricard is a French
alcoholic beverage, so you can picture these guys drunk if you want to. "Zut
alors! Dormez! Canalisation! Merde! *hickup*

Wyvern will just use Attack whenever, but not when they're alone. Oh, no. When
alone, they'll get all freaky and whatnot. In fact, they'll use Breath Wing, of
which the damage like with Wing Raptor will simply be 25 % of your maximum HP.
Is that a good thing? No. Kill them as soon as possible, but not before you
Steal one or more of those sweet common Mythril Knives they carry around. You
want those for your Thieves.

Pas de Seul is annoying. They have the most HP out of any creature here, and
their !Fin attack adds Poison. They're weak to Lightning-elemental attacks, so
Black Thunder spells work just fine. In keeping with the French Ricard Mages,
Pas de Seul means 'no one'. That's strange. Then again, it's a strange
game. 

Mount that Wind Drake of yours and go check out the meteor. Nobody's here and
there's nothing interesting going on. There seems to be a weird discoloration
on the very front of the meteorite however, which could indicate a hidden door
of some sorts; there's nothing you can do to open it now, however. Let's check
out Walse Tower, check out the entire militia of Walse surrounding it and all,
that'd be kinda impressive.

The entire militia of Walse consists out of two wounded soldiers eating dust.
It seems only three made it up there; holy beast-baby Garula that went berserk
and knocked the guards down, King Walse and an unknown warrior. Strangely
enough, should you fly the Wind Drake back to Walse now, Garula will be happily
prancing around with the little girl as always. It's a glitch in the Matrix!

The path is entirely straight-forward and without features until you cross the
body of King Walse. Still alive, but hardly. He urges you to continue and stop
Garula. It slowly becomes more and more apparent some force is consciously
pushing for the destruction of the crystals, but who could possibly care for
the death of this world? Could that being of darkness King Tycoon spoke off
have any power to influence our reality? Next to King Walse is a pillar in the
water overgrown with vines. This pillar can be climbed to reach a chest
containing a Silk Robe, a nice new piece of equipment for your mages.

The next floor houses a Save Point and a chest containing a Maiden's Kiss, an
item used for removing the Toad status ailment. It's not until the eight floor
that I get to mention something interesting again: these water-covered floors
house three patches of overgrown structure. Climb the left one to find a Silver
Armlet. Everybody but the Knight can equip it, but it seems to me that the
Thieves and Monks of your party need it the most (especially the Thieves). Fall
down the hole and climb the right patch. There's a chest with an Ether here.
Climb the stairs here to reach the Water Crystal.

Both anomalies wait for you near the - thank the gods - intact Water Crystal.
Garula is battling the mysterious golden warrior...and winning. In a few words,
it's explained that a being is controlling Garula, and that it by these means
seeks to destroy the Water Crystal. We MUST stop Garula before it can
accomplish this.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.8.4  The fight with Garula
**********************************

Garula always was a common sight around the Water Tower, being one of the
few monsters pure-hearted enough to stand the purified water. It's not this
creature's fault that it was the target of manipulation, but we can't stand by
and let the Water Crystal be destroyed.

Garula
Level: 3, HP: 1200, MP: 100
Defense: 7, Magic Defense: 4
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Hi-Potion (rare), Potion (common)
Win: Hi-Potion
Creature: Magic Beast
Special Technique: !Rush
Special Technique Effect: causes Sap status
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Toad, Poison, Darkness, Old, Paralyze, Confuse,
  Berserk, Silence, Stop, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Rush, Toad

Garula attacks physically, and he hits hard and fast. He may counter any damage
done on him by up to two physical attacks after he has reached 800 HP or less,
and his special technique !Rush adds the Sap status as well, which is a bad
thing. Garula has four weaknesses you can exploit:

- Being only physical in nature and never using anything else unless it's
  countering an attack makes it a sitting duck for any character who combines
  !Guard with the Counter support ability. With this combination, you can't
  lose since you take 0 damage, then counter-attack every time Garula tries
  something.
- The Whip you won from Magissa may Paralyze the creature, so if you're willing
  to have a character lose out on 5 ABP you can really cripple Garula.
- Flash, the Blue spell you may have learned from the Headstone on North
  Mountain. Setting Darkness on Garula will make all of his attacks miss 75 %
  of the time, which is a sweet deal. If you have Flash at your disposal, make
  sure to utilize it.
- Pond's Chorus, the insane new hype spell for every Blue Mage teenager works
  against Garula. Sure, the creature may cast Toad on itself to remove the
  status, but that's a turn he could've spent attacking, and it misses on
  occasion. Physicals from Toads do no damage, but sadly !Rush still inflicts
  the Sap status. To be extremely mean to baby Garula, cast Silence on him
  before casting Pond's Chorus; Silence stops the Toad spell from Garula so
  he'll be stuck as a harmless Toad.

Any combination of the above works like a charm. Remember that Garula is an
opponent that is most dangerous when attacked head-on. If you use a Cure spell,
and when you stop attacking the tusked terror, the barrage of attacks Garula
seems to deliver will suddenly decrease dramatically in number. Take advantage
of this. Garula can catch you off-guard, but you shouldn't let that happen. Any
character with the Cover support ability works great as meatshield for
unexpected Near Death characters, especially when paired with (you guessed it)
!Guard or Counter.

To be short, keep the initial damage to a minimum, Steal, cast Flash and
Silence, whack him a little, cast Pond's Chorus and go all-out. There's little
to worry about if you follow this strategy.

After Garula has been dispatched (you'll learn later that Garula is still
alive...are we actually going to KILL a boss one of these days?) the Water
Crystal will shatter. Gods, all this work for nothing, that's just grand. The
heavily wounded golden warrior will stumble to the exit in a vain attempt to
see the light of day before dying, and just before he collapses he makes it
known that he knows ol' Galuf. He proceeds to die, inconveniently blocking the
exit, thus constituting a fire hazard.

The Water Crystal shards shine a mysterious light. That's "Sparkle" for 'please
use me'. There are six shards, but one of them is blocked from your path. When
you pick up the five shards you can pick up at this point, Walse Castle starts
rumbling beneath your feat. There's a door, but before you can properly escape
the entire peninsula sinks to the bottom of the ocean. Great, we'll be the
Chosen Corpses in no time at all. Luckily, an old friend we believed to be gone
comes to the rescue; Syldra helps the Chosen Warriors out of the pickle they're
in with the last of his power. In a touching goodbye cutscene, Faris tearfully
bids farewell to her trusted companion, who has been a friend and ally for
years. The last cry of Syldra resonates in the souls of us all, and is almost
too good a representation of the now irrecoverable situation of the Water
crystal for us to bear.

We've got new Jobs! AWESOME!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.9.1  The Water Crystal Jobs
**********************************

One crystal shard went down to the depths, together with the Tower of Walse.
But five shards of the now-broken Water Crystal were saved, and they now
entrust you with five warrior souls of yore.

[BERSERKER-LINK] [MYSTIC-LINK] [TIMEM-LINK]

[SUMMONER-LINK] [REDMAGE-LINK]

The Berserker starts every battle with the Berserk status, and favors Hammers
and Axes in battle, both of which take only 25 % of the target's Defense into
account and vary wildly in their damage output. Berserkers are slow, and while
the Battle Axe is a but more damaging overall than, say, the Mythril Sword, the
fact that the Berserker randomly targets opponents in the Back Row, has
unpredictable damage output and misses every now and again, the Berserker is
not a good choice right now. The Berserk ability that the Berserker learns
after 100 ABP is a sound choice on Knights, Monks, Ninjas and other physically
inclined Jobs. If your Knight has learned Twohanded, switching to Berserker
isn't a bad idea; it's certainly the lazy man's choice (and boy am I lazy).

The Mystic Knight has some difficult mechanics behind it, so definetely check
out the link given above. Note that they take a turn to enchant their weapon
before they can be anything but an inferior Knight. They aren't as hot versus
random encounters, but are great boss slayers; especially with Twohanded does
the damage fly. The spells they can imbue their weapons with, come from the
Black and White list, the same you buy in the Magic Shops. The Mystic Knight is
surprisingly fast for a Heavy Armor kinda Job; they are outrun only by Thieves.

The Time Mage is just a Mage with a new school of magic; note that their Magic
Power is nowhere near as high as the Black Mage, and more comparable with the
White and Blue Mage. The spells you have right now are not very impressive,
but that'll improve soon. Slow doubles a target's ATB count between turns,
Haste halves it. Mute is a strange spell that makes it impossible for allies
and enemies alike to cast Black, White, Time, Summon spells, Spellblade effects
or use Bells. Blue spells can still be cast though. Mute will always work, but
some monster encounters (most notably boss battles) will not allow Mute to be
cast. In random battles, the Time Mages are best used for either Black or Blue
spells (if the action ability is set) or to cast Haste on your most powerful
physical attacker.

The Summoner is the one that can conjure up some Chocobo, some Sylph fey and
Remora fish; all spells you could simply buy in Walse. This is also the Job
that will be able to summon Shiva; the Summoner is generally the Job to go to
for mass-nuking of the battlefield with heavy multi-target elemental attacks.
At this point, the Summoner has three creatures to conjure. The Chocobo arrives
to perform a Chocobo Kick to a single target; it targets Defense rather than
Magic Defense and may miss due to Magic Evasion; there is an 8% chance that a
Fat Chocobo may appear to deal unblockable damage that targets Defense to the
entire enemy party. Sylph deals magical, unblockable damage to a single target
and heals the amount of damage done / 4 to all four characters; Remora use
Constrict to set Paralyze to a single target.

The Red Mage is the Jack or Jill of all Trades, Master of None (but Swanky
Hats). It's AWESOME now; the Red Mage is able to cast both Black and White
magic; only up to the level 3 spells, but that's not an issue right now. Do
note that the Red Mage's Magic Power is significantly lower than other Mages,
which also means his or her MP will run out sooner. It's capable of wielding
Swords and has a Strength bonus, but you'd better give him an elemental Rod and
cast spells from the Back Row.

If you have mastered level 3 !Black and level 3 !White, I'd personally shoot
for !Summon from the Summoner rather than !Time from the Time Mage as
especially Shiva can clean massive house and the Time Mage just fails to
deliver at this stage of the game. If you have magically-inclined characters
that have neither !White nor !Black to any large degree (focused on !Blue,
for instance), you wish to learn !Red instead.

Now that the overwhelming tragedies of the past moments have passed, there's
time to reflect on more practical matters. Where is Hiryu? Is it safe? Is it
alright? And where's King Walse, did he manage to escape Walse Tower while we
were going head-to-head with the possessed Garula or was he swallowed in the
raging waters?

On the Overworld Map, it seems the Wind Drake made it to dry land, but we
really couldn't expect anything else from a flying dragon such as the Wind
Drake. Flying the Wind Drake to Walse Castle and walking through the halls to
find the throne room and the subsequent quarters of King Walse teaches us that
yes indeed, the mangled monarch is still alive enough to breathe. He urges you
to travel to Karnak, where another Crystal is being amplified and where, as
news would have it, another meteor crashed, bad omens as they turn out to be.
However, where should we find the means to go there? Karnak lies to the far
west, across the mountains which are too high for the Wind Drake to pass over.
Problems abound.

A wandering Karnak soldier can be found in Walse Castle as well. He appears to
have waken up near Walse. He was investigating the crashed Karnak meteor. Maybe
there's a connection between the Walse meteorite and the Karnak meteorite? We
might as well check it out.

This is the time where you're told about the possibility of going back to
Castle Tycoon, but I already told you to go there. If you haven't yet, now's
the time, and I helpfully shift your attention towards said section, section
4.7.1.

A little foreshadowing: in the town of Karnak, you'll be able to buy the Fira
spell, which will be immensely helpful in the fight versus Shiva. You can
either try to take her on now, which is also quite doable with some preparation
(or, if you have one or more Flame Rods, broken Flame Rods), or go to Karnak,
work through the cutscenes there, return to Walse and easily knock her out cold.

That's funny because she's an Ice-elemental entity.

[SHIVA-LINK]

At any rate, fly the Wind Drake to the meteor and say goodbye to it, as you
can't bring dragons of 7"3 or higher into the meteor. Inside, there's a tile
that looks so psychedelic it either has to be a warp stone or something LSD-
related. It's not something LSD-related. Onto Karnak county!

If you have a Summoner and have already defeated Shiva, make sure to give the
Summoner a Frost Rod to deal 50 % extra damage with the Ice-elemental summon
monster's attack.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.10.1  Karnak county
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Aegir (#31), Zu (#32), Wild Nakk (#33), Grass Tortoise (#34)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Elixir (rare Zu steal and rare Zu drop), Turtle Shell (guaranteed Grass
  Tortoise drop)

  Blue Spells:
  ???

  Forests:
  100 % Wild Nakk x5

  West of the Forest:
  35 % Aegir x3
  35 % Zu
  23 % Zu, Aegir x2
   6 % Grass Tortoise x2

  East of the Forest:
  35 % Grass Tortoise x2
  35 % Zu, Aegir x2
  23 % Aegir, Grass Tortoise
   6 % Zu, Grass Tortoise, Aegir

Aegir are not very interesting other than the fact they have a Special Technique
called !Tentacle that adds the Old status. Take care of them with fast and
furious violence. The Old status gradually decreases all of your stats
(Strength, Agility, Stamina and Magic Power), but not your level. Also note that
while HP is normally tied to Stamina, in-battle modification of Stamina doesn't
affect your current or maximum HP total.

The massive Zu birds have over 849 HP. 850 HP, to be precise. They have a rare
(1/16) Elixir drop and an even rarer (10/256) Elixir steal, but since they have
nothing else you could potentially get one from every Zu you encounter. The
odds are 1/66 for every Steal attempt, though, now that you aren't yet boosted
by the Thief Glove accessory. Their special technique is just called !Critical
Attack, so you'd think it's just 150% damage; but it's a meanie in disguise
since the attack is unblockable and pierces Defense.

The Wild Nakk wolves that inhabit the woods have a 33 % chance to use the Blue
??? spell every odd round. Make sure to learn it here as there's no reason not
to; note that ??? won't get its name to appear when the Wild Nakks (or you) cast
it; it'll just look like an alternative physical attack. Wild Nakks are weak to
Fire-elemental attacks, so when you have a Fire Rod equipped MT Fire spells are
their demise. MT Fira spells don't require Fire Rods to be fatal, obviously.
Wild Nakks have some Magic Defense, so if the attack isn't barrier-piercing
it'll have trouble killing them. The Wild Nakk x 5 monster formation you'll
always encounter in the forest gives you 625 Gil, which is quite a hefty sum
for little trouble.

??? is a non-elemental attack which deals (max HP - current HP) damage. In
English, that means the more damage you've taken the more damage you'll do with
???. It's a fairly useless spell on the whole as you'd be better off trying to
recover by means of Vampire or a Hi-Potion should you find yourself in a
situation where ??? would be worth casting.

Grass Tortoises are merely notable for their glaring weakness to Ice-elemental
attacks (Blizzard, Blizzara, Shiva) and the fact they drop a Turtle Shell every
time. You'll find use for Turtle Shells in the future, but they are useless at
the moment. Don't sell them!

It's a straight-forward route all the way down to Karnak. The town of Karnak
and Karnak Castle are to the south-west, but you'll have to take a little
detour to the north-east to get there. When you reach Karnak, it seems it's
quite a little dictatorial community: passage to the ship is prohibited,
there's a big wall to hinder progress and passage to Karnak Castle is also
prohibited. Let's dive into town and hear what's buzzing.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.10.2  The town of Karnak
**********************************

  Features:
  Piano, and... I'm not giving anything away, but don't drop the soap while
  you're there...

What's buzzing is this: the wall is there to stop annoying scholars coming from
the Library of the Ancients who claim exploiting the Fire Crystal is, in fact,
bad. I'm sure the Queen will listen to US, no worries. We're a group of
unlikely heroes, why shouldn't she?

Don't forget to visit the Pub for some schmoozing with the locals and a fine
piano for you to play.

Furthermore, an NPC on the streets is boasting about the ridiculously
inexpensive weapons and armor Karnak has to offer. Let's dive into the shops
then, shall we? The Magic Shop seems closed for the day, but that doesn't mean
we can't take abuse of the new weapons and armor Karnak has to offer us.

Weapon Shop:
Mythril Knife        112 Gil
Mythril Sword        220 Gil
Mythril Hammer       262 Gil
Flame Rod            187 Gil
Frost Rod            187 Gil
Thunder Rod          187 Gil
Flail                195 Gil

Armor Shop:
Mythril Shield       147 Gil
Mythril Helmet       137 Gil
Mythril Armor        175 Gil
Silver Plate         150 Gil
Silk Robe            125 Gil
Mythril Glove        150 Gil
Silver Armlet        125 Gil
Okay, here's the deal. When you try to Sell something, nothing special happens.
When you don't and exit the screenor do anything or try to buy an item, you are
halted by the fact that Karnak guards carry you away, into Karnak prison. If you
buy something, the price that was listed will be paid and you'll obtain the
weapon in question. That Mythril Hammer is far and away the priciest item the
shops have the sell, so that's where the biggest discount may be obtained.

   iOS/Android: This incarnation of the game allows you to purchase more than 
   one copy of a selected item at this point. You can buy Mythril Hammers at a
   meager price of 262 Gil per mallet, then sell them back later for double 
   that amount to double your Gil pool. If you buy 99 of them, your profit
   equals 25938 Gil. A neat trick!

At any rate, you'll quickly find yourself in a jail-cell. Doin' your time (it's
a second or 15) will cause the white-haired guy in the jail next to you to walk
over to the wall and blow a hole in it. Talk to the guy to learn his identity.

You quickly learn several very important facts. Meet Cid Previa, an engineer
working for the country of Karnak. He used his knowledge to amplify the
crystals of Tycoon, Walse and Karnak for the good of us all, not knowing it
was, in fact, for the BAD of us all. Trying to prevent the Fire Crystal from
shattering like the Wind Crystal and Water Crystal, he was put in jail by the
queen of Karnak. And now he's here, being freed by the Karnak Chancellor as
- gasp thrice - a crack has appeared in the Fire Crystal. It's probably too
late, but they've finally started to listen to the voice of reason. Cid gets
you out of jail too. And you were just about to get a sweet prison tattoo...

Now what was this talk about werewolves earlier? A werewolf came out of the
meteor?

At any rate, Karnak Castle is open to your wanderings. Two points of interest:
the Fire Crystal is the driving power behind the Fire-Powered Ship and is
located in the basement of Karnak Castle. However, by the power of the same
inconveniently placed flames that stop you from reaching any of the chests you
see, nobody can access the Fire Crystal. The only way to reach it is through the
Steamship, but it's been overrun by monsters much like the Wind Shrine. Also,
Queen Karnak is nowhere to be seen, a fact overshadowed by the significance of
the cracking Fire Crystal but odd nonetheless.

When you try to leave the castle, the werewolf you've heard about a few times
tries to enter the castle but is quickly chased off. Why is it that odd and
mysterious characters appear always when one of those blasted meteors land?

Now, the shops in Karnak are open again for you to exploit, but the prices have
been  raised significantly due to the possible financial instability that looms
over Karnak. To compensate, the Magic Shop has opened its doors.

Weapon Shop:
Mythril Knife        450 Gil
Mythril Sword        880 Gil
Mythril Hammer      1050 Gil
Flame Rod            750 Gil
Frost Rod            750 Gil
Thunder Rod          750 Gil
Flail                780 Gil
 If all is well you should have all the Mythril Knives and Mythril Swords you
need, but if this is not the case, here's where you buy them. If you are
planning on using a Berserker in the next dungeon you should definitely buy
a Mythril Hammer, too. You don't have to buy anything else, as you shouldn't
need more Flails and there's no specific reason to buy Rods. You could break
Frost Rods versus the next boss creature for illegally huge amounts of damage
though, so if that's your cup of tea then buy one or two for that very purpose.

Armor Shop:
Mythril Shield       590 Gil
Mythril Helmet       550 Gil
Plumed Hat           350 Gil
Mythril Armor        700 Gil
Silver Plate         600 Gil
Silk Robe            500 Gil
Mythril Glove        600 Gil
Silver Armlet        500 Gil
 What's there to say about all this? Every character, no matter what Job he or
she is currently wielding, should get a near-full upgrade from the Armor Shop
in Karnak. Mythril Shields for everybody that can equip them, Mythril Helmet,
Mythril Armor and Mythril Gloves for the Heavy Armor class characters, Plumed
Hats, Silver Plate and Silver Armlets for the Clothes classes and Plumed Hats
and Silk Robes for your mages. It's very simply and very nice. For some reason,
this shop didn't start selling Plumed Hats until after the breakdown of the
economy. Maybe pimp hats are in high demand now that Karnak's legal job market
has crashed?

Magic Shop (Black):
Fira                 600 Gil
Blizzara             600 Gil
Thundara             600 Gil
Poison               290 Gil
Sleep                300 Gil
Fire                 150 Gil
Blizzard             150 Gil
Thunder              150 Gil
 The four new spells here are Fira, Blizzara, Thundara and Poison. If you have
little money left and don't really want to sell anything, buy Fira and Blizzara
and nothing else. Blizzara and Cura from the White Magic shop really are the
priorities for the next dungeon, and Fira is just really really helpful versus
Shiva. Fira, Blizzara and Thundara are simply stronger versions of the basic
elemental spells of the Black Mage; Poison is an ST attack that sets the Poison
status. On Spellblade, Fira and its brethren are stronger as well, but only
versus targets weak to the element. Poison Spellblade turns the weapon into a
Poison-elemental one; it will set the Poison status as well upon a successful
hit.

Magic Shop (White):
Cura                 620 Gil
Raise                700 Gil
Confuse              650 Gil
Silence              280 Gil
Protect              280 Gil
Cure                 180 Gil
Libra                 80 Gil
Poisona               90 Gil
 Cura and Raise are the priorities for now if you're low on money, else the
Confuse spell is one you don't really want to skip. Raise revives a character,
much like Phoenix Down; Confuse is an ST spell that sets the Confuse status,
which is useful to disable an opponent temporarily and/or learning certain Blue
spells.

Magic Shop (Time):
Gravity              620 Gil
Stop                 580 Gil
Haste                320 Gil
Mute                 320 Gil
Slow                  80 Gil
Regen                100 Gil
 Three new Time spells for you to buy: Gravity, Stop and Haste. Gravity deals
(current HP / 2) damage, but will miss when the target is Heavy. Stop sets the
Stop status; it'll last quite a while, but will be very quickly worn out if the
target is Heavy. Note that Gravity is a grand spell for an upcoming boss, so
don't pass it up!

Item Shop:
Potion                40 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Tent                 250 Gil
 If you're done and fully healed (that's what the Inn is for!), buy some Eye
Drops (especially if you don't have any Silver Specs), save your game on the
Overworld Map and head into the Fire-Powered Ship. It'll be fun and adventurey
there!

Oh, wait, no, there was still Shiva back in Walse Castle, and since she'll be
immediately helpful in the Fire-Powered Ship we should definitely get her. Trace
back to the meteor and eventually to Walse Castle. You could sleep at the Inn of
Walse to regain your health before doing so, obviously.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.10.3  Ice to see you, Shiva
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Elf Toad (#25), Ice Soldier (#26), Jackanapes (#30), Ice Commander (#248),
  Shiva (#249)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Frost Rod (guaranteed Shiva drop)

  Blue Spells:
  Pond's Chorus

[SHIVA-LINK]

Shiva is an Ice spirit sealed within the castle by the purified water of the
Water Crystal. How exactly a flexible matter such as water could ever be used
to seal anything is beyond any guess, though. Shiva is waiting for you in one
of the towers of the castle. Shiva, obviously, being a recurrent magical entity
throughout the series.

Enter the castle, descend to the lower floor and leave this room through the
door to the south. Outside, you have the option of walking into the water. Do
so. To the top, there's a waterfall. It's concealing the entrance to the water
tower of castle Walse, so enter in the middle to find it.

  Castle Walse Watertower:
  58 % Elf Toad, Elf Toad, Elf Toad
  42 % Ice Soldier, Ice Soldier

The enemies here are ones you've already seen earlier and know how to deal
with. Burn the soldiers, freeze the toads, steal some Mythril Swords if you
could use some cash.

Now, simply ascend the Water Tower until you reach what is quite obviously the
resting place of Shiva herself. The impossible green-flame energy sphere thing?
That's her, all-right. Interact with it to allow Shiva to speak for herself.
Naturally assuming you're wanting to dominate her, she attacks you. Before you
engage her, by the way, make sure that you have two characters in the Front Row
and two in the Back Row, regardless of their Job.

Shiva
Level: 11, HP: 1500, MP: 1000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Phoenix Down (rare), Hi-Potion (common)
Win: Frost Rod
Absorbs: Ice
Weakness: Fire
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Slow
Attacks: Blizzara

Ice Commander
Level: 4, HP: 600, MP: 200
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Mythril Sword (common)
Win: Heavy Sword (rare)
Absorbs: Ice
Weakness: Fire
Creature: Humanoid
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Toad, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze,
 Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack

Shiva is surrounded by a whole slew of Ice Commanders, too. These are all of
the same elemental type as Shiva, so they absorb Ice and are weak to
Fire-elemental attacks. You can steal Mythril Swords from them, and they rarely
drop a Long Sword after the fight, so they're basically just Ice Soldiers with
a different name, without the random Ice spellcasting and a whole lot more
durability. They're vulnerable to everything from Pond's Chorus, Flash, Sleep
to Poison. The fight isn't over until you've killed them too, so might as well
start attacking them now.

Shiva herself knows only two attacks, and they're both Blizzara. Every odd turn
she will target every character in the Front Row, every even turn she'll target
every Back Row character with it. It's that simple.

*****
Fira strategy
*****

How to deal with this? First, let loose with any status ailment-inducing
attacks you might have. The Blue Flash attack is a wise idea, as is an MT'd
Black Sleep spell. You likely won't hit all of the Commanders, but you'll be
glad to get some of the physical violence out of the way. If you have a Time
caster, the Slow spells works on Shiva but it's not very important. Now, power
up any Mystic Knights you might have with a Fira spell on their sword and get
the show started. Pick apart the snoozing and/or blinded Commanders first.
MT'd, it takes only two Fira spells to kill them, and that doesn't need a Flame
Rod. A slash with a Fira sword does a lot of damage, and with Two-Handed it's
almost an affront to God.

The same goes for Shiva. Keep yourselves healed (took me hours to come up with
this brilliant strategy, let me tell ya) and dish out the damage. If your level
is 11, a Blue Goblin Punch definitely hurts, and anything Fire-related is
obviously a good idea. Before long, Shiva'll be defeated and your Summoner will
obtain the power to summon Shiva.

*****
Non-Fira strategy:
*****

Without having gone to Karnak, you don't have the Fira spell yet, you can't
cast it on your swords and you haven't obtained the defense upgrade either, so
it's all a little difficult. Strategy is vital here. If you have Flame Rods and
aren't scared of breaking them, feel free to disregard all the text below, of
course... Before you engage, make sure the Front Row/Back Row ratio is 2/2, and
have a Blue caster and a White caster.

Start the battle off with Flash from the Blue caster. Don't attack yet, just
keep yourself healed. Now, hit the Commanders with Pond's Chorus (and possibly
Sleep spells to stall until you can hit them with Pond's Chorus). After Shiva
is surrounded by three toads, you've quickly eliminated the physical threat.
Now, start attacking Shiva. If your party is primarily physical nature at this
point, it' might be a good idea to clear out the Commanders first to remove the
Back Row advantage of Shiva.

If you don't have Flash and Pond's Chorus either you're probably either stuck
breaking Flame Rods or seriously looking at going to Karnak anyway, as while
I'm sure some asian dude could figure out a way to defeat Shiva without Fire 2
OR those Blue spells, I'm not going to try for you.

EDIT: Some asian dude sent me a way to defeat Shiva without Fire 2 OR those
Blue spells! Should you find yourself at level 11, Goblin Punch will deal 800%
damage, taking her out quite fast. All that's left is the Ice Commanders, but
a combination of Flash and Pond's Chorus should make them doable.

When you're done, time to get to Karnak. Try out Shiva versus the random
encounters there; Ice Soldiers will absorb Shiva's attack but that's all.

A thing to consider; a Mythril Hammer Two-Handed Berserker is capable of
killing a Jackanapes (this is due to the fact that Axes and Hammers only
consider 25 % of the target's Defense). So even if you don't want to flee, the
1000 Gil x 2, Speed spell and Elven Mantle are obtainable. It's going to cost
you quite a lot of Phoenix Downs and luck, though.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.11.1  The Fire-Powered Ship
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Crew Dust (#37), Poltergeist (#38), Defeater (#39), Motor Trap (#40), Liquid
  Flame (#251)

  Container contents:
  Cottage, Elixir x3, Green Beret, Moonring Blade, Mythril Glove, Phoenix Down,
  Thief's Gloves

  Miscellaneous items:
  Ether (common Motor Trap steal), Speed Shake (rare Defeater drop)

  Features:
  World Map

  Blue Spells:
  Flash, Self-Destruct

It seems the Fire-Powered Ship is sucking away the power of the Fire Crystal.
Stop the cause, and the Fire Crystal may yet be saved. It's time to quickly
dive into the Fire-Powered Ship and shut down the engine. Let's do it! You'd
think that with all the destructive technological genius of Cid, they simply
could have set off a bomb on the ship, but nobodies mentioning anything of the
sort. You may counter that the Fire-Powered Ship is, like, totally special and
needs to be preserved, but it's either a fancy boat or the benefits of fire for
the entire world.

  Bulkhead
  35 % Crew Dust x 2
  35 % Crew Dust x 4
  23 % Defeater, Motor Trap x 2
   6 % Crew Dust, Defeater x 3, Motor Trap x 2

  Bulkhead (Ramps)
  35 % Crew Dust x 2, Defeater, Motor Trap x 2
  35 % Poltergeist, Defeater, Motor Trap x 2
  23 % Crew Dust, Defeater x 3, Motor Trap x 2
   6 % Defeater, Motor Trap x 2

  Bulkhead (Thief's Gloves room)
  58 % Poltergeist, Defeater, Motor Trap x 2
  42 % Crew Dust x 2, Poltergeist

  Bulkhead (Lever room)
  35 % Poltergeist x 2
  35 % Crew Dust x 2, Defeater x 2, Motor Trap x 2
  23 % Defeater, Motor Trap x 2
   6 % Crew Dust, Defeater x 3, Motor Trap x 2

NOTICE: All formations with two Motor Traps will lack the Motor Trap enemies
when you encounter them. They will appear only when you have killed a sole
Defeater on the battlefield. When you kill one together with other enemies
(including other Defeaters), Motor Traps won't appear. If you kill the last
Defeater with a Counter attack, Motor Traps won't appear.

An NPC in Karnak talked about the Crew Dust and its tendency to cast Flash when
alone. 'Tis true. If you didn't manage to extract Flash from the Headstones,
here's where you'll definitely want to learn the attack. Crew Dust are weak to
Ice-elemental attacks so MT'd Blizzara spells and Shiva clean major house. Crew
Dust are also weak versus Wind-elemental attacks, but it's just that you don't
have any truly powerful Wind-elemental attacks right now. Two Aero spells will
take them down. They'll normally attack with physicals only, with the
occasional !Sap thrown in (causes the Sap status). Another fun thing about Crew
Dust is how they can't avoid Blue spells; they'll always hit. So eh... Flash
and Vampire will never miss or something, Aero is unblockable anyway.

Poltergeist absorbs Ice-elemental attacks but is weak to Wind. Its !Lick
attack, which sets Confuse, is really annoying so dispatch them quickly; Aero
really helps out. Normally Confused character will stick to physical attacks 
directed at your party, but Confuse may also cause !Black and !White casters to
cast spells at the 'wrong' targets. This makes characters with !Black somewhat
of a liability. 

Motor Trap only appears when a sole Defeater is killed. Motor Trap has several
interesting attacks. First, there's Gamma Ray, an ST attack that sets Stop on a
target. When hit by a Lightning-elemental attack such as the Black Thunder
spell, they'll cast Self-Destruct which deals the caster's current HP worth of
damage while killing the caster. Self-Destruct can be learned by those with
Learning set, but it's quite useless as a battle strategy.

Defeaters only attack physically. They're weak to Ice-elemental attacks. They
may drop Speed Shakes, items that can only be used by the !Drink command you
can't have yet. Take note that when you encounter a single Defeater or when you
leave a single Defeater on the battlefield and then kill it, it'll summon
Motor Traps to give you trouble.

In general, characters that can summon Shiva are great here since the ice
mistress will destroy any creature except for Poltergeist. Those who can cast
Aero are also handy, since ST Aero kills Poltergeists and Crew Dusts. Together,
they should breeze through the dungeon. 

Walk down the wooden interior of the Fire-Powered Ship until you suddenly
encounter the technic rooms. Here's where the monsters start appearing. When
you enter, you can see a white door; it leads to a chest containing a Mythril
Glove. Now, ascend the stairs and get up the stairs to the far left. It'll
eventually net you an Elixir. Now, get back down. In this room you can still
find a chest with a Cottage, and the only stairs you haven't used up to that
point gets you another Elixir. Now, leave through the other white door, to the
top-right of the room, to find an elevator. See the red switch?

On this new weird metal ramp, there's a Phoenix Down to the right. If you
haven't picked up the World Map in the Ship Graveyard you can find it here as
well. Also, another elevator.

Now, this is just getting needlessly complex! There's a pipe to the left of
you. Seriously, who designed this thing? Cid, obviously, but why did he go
bonkers during the process? A completely useless conveyer belt keeps you from
opening a chest, too.

Follow the pipe, white door, elevator, and now there are multiple options.
Here's what they all go to:

1   2   3   4

1: Takes you back to a point you've already been. Useless.
2: You'll want to take this one last, as it continues the dungeon.
3: Nets you the chest you couldn't obtain earlier. It's a pair of Thief's
   Gloves!
4: A new sub-area where you eventually find a Green Beret. Nice.

Get the Thief's Gloves first. Only Thieves (aside from Freelancers) can equip
these lightweight gloves; they add more Defense than the Silver Armlet and
double your chances of successfully obtaining an item with !Steal and !Mug.
You now steal with 80% succes rate! They make sure that the Thief itself will
forever be the superior robber, even if !Steal or !Mug is set on another Job.

Get the Green Beret (for your Thief/Monk/Red Mage/Blue Mage) by entering
pipe #4, then proceed to the right  and throw yourself down #2. Before going
through the white door, follow the stairs, flip the red switch and find a
spiffy new weapon for the Thief. The Moonring Blade deals the same amount of
damage from the Back Row and is powerful enough to remove the need for
Barehanded, so stick another ability on your Thief and put him or her in the
Back Row. The Moonring Blade has a substandard hit rate of 95%, which is one
of its few downsides.

Continue down the logical path. Don't step on the conveyer belt, you don't want
to go that way. The other white door takes you to a Save Point: use it!

This room is a final last switch puzzle before the boss, so have fun before it
gets too serious. The puzzle is easy; just flip every switch you can reach once
when you reach them, except for the very bottom one which takes care of you
wanting to return. There's a chest with an Elixir that you easily grab if you
just flip every switch once. Now, enter the white door to finally find the
engine in the Power Room.

Oh, so there's Queen Karnak! And she's not nice to you now! Gosh, after doing
stuff to King Tycoon and possessing Garula, that malevolent force we're trying
to stop sure likes to find itself some high-profile lackeys. At any rate, by
some logic I have yet to grasp, fire comes out of the engine and attacks you.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.11.2  The battle with Liquid Flame
**********************************

Yeah, there's no telling what happened here. Maybe Queen Karnak has awesome
Fire-manipulating skills and that's why she's being controlled, in turn causing
the flames from the engine to attack you. Maybe she was just a guard here and
the power from far beyond controls the fire, who knows. At any rate, there's a
flame monster to cope with now.

Liquid Flame (Human)
Level: 19, HP: 3000, MP: 100
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 15
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Win: Flame Scroll
Absorbs: Wind, Fire
Nullifies: Water, Poison
Weakness: Ice
Special Technique: !Rush: Barrier-piercing
Special Technique Effect: Unblockable
Vulnerable to: Death, Confuse
Attacks: Attack, !Rush, Blaze

Liquid Flame (Hand)
Level: 19, HP: 3000, MP: 30
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 30
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Win: Flame Rod
Absorbs: Fire
Nullifies: Water, Wind, Earth, Holy, Poison, Lightning, Ice
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Ray
Special Technique Effect: adds Paralyze
Vulnerable to: Death, Confuse
Attacks: Attack, !Fingertips, Fira

Liquid Flame (Whirlwind)
Level: 19, HP: 3000, MP: 50
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 15
Evasion: 30%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Win: Flame Bow
Absorbs: Wind, Fire
Nullifies: Water, Poison
Weakness: Ice
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: 1.5 damage
Vulnerable to: Death, Confuse
Attacks: Fira, Magnet

Here's the deal, and it's a very simple one. Every form will randomly use one
or two attacks, and will perform an especially nasty attack when you damage it,
after which it'll revert to another form. Here we go:

         Normal attacks:        Pre-change counter:
Human  - Attack, !Rush, Blaze   Blaze
Hand   - Attack, !Ray           Fira (ST)
W Wind - Fira (on itself)       Magnet

I don't believe we've been over the Magnet attack before; odd as it may seem on
an opponent such as this one, all that Magnet does is set the affected party
member in the Front Row. If it already was in the Front Row, no effect will
occur. Flame is like a Fire-elemental Breath Wing; it deals 25 % maximum HP
damage. When in Human form, Liquid Flame's special !Rush is unblockable and
ignores Defense.

Human   - 20 % Evasion
Hand    - 10 % Evasion, immunity to Ice-elemental attacks (including Blizzara-
          enhanced swords), is Heavy (Gravity doesn't work)
W Wind  - 30 % Evasion

Liquid Lame (LOL!) starts of in its human form. The entire point of this battle
is that every single time you damage Liquid Flame it deals an especially nasty
attack and changes form. Thus, you'll want to have as few hits as possible,
with as much damage output as possible. The Big Four when it comes to damage
are Frost Rod-boosted Blizzara spells, Frost Rod-boosted Shiva summons, Two-
Handed Blizzara swords and...Gravity! Gravity cuts the amount of current HP of
Liquid Flame in half, dealing up to 1500 damage when Liquid Flame is undamaged.
Note that Gravity doesn't work on the Hand form, as it is Heavy.

   iOS/Android: In this version, the Liquid Flame is always in the Back Row. 
   Booh. You'll find Blizzara Spellblade effects lacking in damage compared 
   to magical attacks. 

Note: Obviously there's the option of breaking Frost Rods versus the Liquid
Flame; while released Blizzaga spells do enough damage to utterly destroy
Liquid Flame in two hits, I don't think it's necessary in a normal game and
it's just going to cost you items/money which other strategies don't. If you
find yourself playing a single class challenge or something, it's a win ticket;
you can also simply change to a Time Mage, have it cast Gravity, absorbs the
first Blaze attack that will never kill anybody, then shatter an Ice Rod to
kill the flame.

Start the battle off with a Gravity spell, and heal up from the Blaze attack
that is its counter. Mystic Knights are faster than Time Mages, so you should
probably already have cast an Blizzara spell on any swords you may have wanted
to imbue. If the Hand was called (that bloody thing!), have a neutral physical
attack change it again (hey, your Clothes class character good for something
too!) and attack whatever the result is with a heavy Ice-elemental nuking. It
should be close to defeat now, so heal up from whatever damage you may have
taken and deliver the final blow.

There is no good reason to not have either Blizzara or Gravity, and that's
basically all you need (Two-Handed Blizzara swords and Shiva are variations,
really) so this pretty much the strategy you should follow. Two White or Red
casters are supremely useful to be able to restore HP as quickly as possible.
For some advanced FFVA science, note that the hand only performs weak
physical attacks. Since counter-attacks are never countered, a party full of
dormant Monks will counter this thing into oblivion while Liquid Flame will
never switch forms anymore.

Of course, you could simply rough it out without carefully planning your
violence; as long as you have the Cura spells to counter Blaze and Fira with,
you shouldn't be in too much trouble. In this case, I should mention the fact
that all parts are vulnerable to the White Confuse spell and that the W Wind-
form very easily runs out of MP, so you might want to sit there and wait for it
to run out of MP the first time you see it so you definitely have a brief
moment of rest when you encounter it in the future.

It's a toss-up what the best dropped item is; the Flame Rod is quickly usable
but is for freaking sale already, the Flame Scroll is a 200 Gil item you'll be
able to use in the near future one single time and it'll be a while before
you'll be able to wield the Flame Bow within a Job, at which time you'll easily
have the money to buy one. I'd pick the Flame Bow simply because the most
expensive item, but it's entirely up to you.

After the fight, we're hurried to go see the Fire Crystal. Funnily, if you
trace back your steps at this point and talk to Cid, he'll give no notion to
the fact that you've stopped the engine and urge you to, in fact, go stop the
engine ;) After having endless fun with the conveyer belts once tied to the
engine, I suggest you walk into the pipe and save the world already. Go on!

I suggest you simply stand helplessly by while yet another crucial pillar this
world is resting on crumbles before your very eyes.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.12.1  Escaping Karnak Castle
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Sergeant (#41), Sorcerer (#42), Cur Nakk (#43), Gigas (#44), Iron Claw (#252)

  Container contents:
  2000 Gil x3, Elven Mantle, Elixir x6, Lightning Scroll, Main Gauche, Ribbon,
  Shuriken

  Miscellaneous items:
  Elixir (common Gigas steal), Gaia Gear (rare Sorcerer steal), Mage Masher
  common Sorcerer steal)

  White Spells:
  Esuna

  Blue Spells:
  Aero, Aera, Death Claw

Well, that sucked all around, didn't it? It seems mysterious and quickly dying
friends appear whenever a meteor crashes, and they all know Galuf. The Fire
Crystal has shattered, and all we can do about the situation now is try to
escape the exploding Karnak Castle before we're engulfed in its destruction.

Here's the catch. There are plenty of chests, the contents  of which are
generally good. Most of them are guarded by monsters. There's a boss battle at
the end where you can learn one of the greater Blue spells in the game long
before the next chance arises, and if you are shooting for a perfect Brave
Blade you can't run from any battles either. And all we have is 10 minutes to
do it.

We need a plan.

First off, I'm just gonna go ahead and say it's entirely possible to simply
dash trough the halls of Karnak Castle, fighting every random encounter and
raiding every chest while still learning Death Claw at the end of it. But we
need a team to handle such a situation. Enter Team America! Here's an example
of what works remarkably well:

A Mystic Knight with Two-Handed
A Summoner with a Frost Rod
A Black Mage with Learning with a Frost Rod
A Thief with Barehanded

The Thief will go first and use !Steal, but will be able to deal damage in
longer fight. The Mystic Knight will go second and deal respectable damage;
Knights and Berserkers are too slow. The casters clean up the battlefield with
spells and Shiva.

I want to talk about encounters now.

  (Karnak Castle random encounters)
  70 % Sergeant, Cur Nakk x3
  30 % Cur Nakk

Sergeants will never attack you. They always accompany Cur Nakk and will cause
the Cur Nakk dogs to attack you by saying "You better bring it!". When you've
killed all Cur Nakk dogs, they will say "Can't you take a hint? Eat this!" and
get the hell out of there. Why Karnak soldiers would want to attack you in the
first place is a mystery, as Karnak enlisted your help; maybe they feel you've
failed them? They will very rarely drop a Silver Plate, but since you could
already buy them if you want them, it's no big deal. Note that you'll need to
kill them at least once for a Bestiary entry. The Sergeant you'll face at the
end doesn't count, as it's a different one.

Cur Nakk dogs heavily rely on Sergeants to damage you. They'll simply attack
physically on their own, but when their Sergeants tell them to attack you,
they'll use !Bite. When their Sergeant has been killed, they'll make a run for
it using Flee. You'll sometimes see a single one as an encounter; they'll
immediately use Flee, giving you 2 free ABP.

It is almost impossible to run from any battles here except with the Thief's
!Flee command, so if you run into a battle and don't have that ability, fight
it out. 

A lot of the chests in this section are guarded by monsters. They often contain
excellent treasures, and these chests do count towards your Treasure %. They
are guarded by any combination of Sorceror, Gigas' enemies and Cur Nakks.

Sorcerers, how I loathe thee. Next to physical attacks they have Confuse (first
turn) and Toad (second turn) to cast, but that's not it. Nay it's their great
potential as !Steal victims. Their common slot contains Mage Mashers, stronger
Knives for whoever wants to equip them. They also have a 33 % chance of casting
Silence on the target, hence their name. Sorcerer also have an awesome rare
Steal, which is the Gaia Gear. Gaia Gear won't appear in stores for quite some
time, and they have superior Defense and Magic Defense. In addition, they
increase damage done by Earth-elemental attacks (of which you have none now) by
50 %. Chances are 10/256 you'll get one from your !Steal attempt, though.

Cur Nakk dogs without Sergeants are mere cannon fodder. They'll simply attack
physically on their own, and Flee when they're alone. When they're encountered
leaping out of chests, accompanied by Sorcerers, they'll stick around and
attack normally as long as the Sorcerer is there; when bereaved of their arcane
ally, they'll hightail it out of there tail between their legs.

Gigas are the dungeon's most prominent enemies. They have a common Elixir for
you to Steal, feature almost every chest as a guardian and leave a Goliath
Tonic every time you kill one. When they're damaged they have a 66 % chance of
countering with a Aero spell on the entire party. Other attacks include Aera
(uses randomly every turn) and !Elbow, which is unblockable and barrier-
piercing. Elixirs are useful later on and this is the most easily abused source
in the game, so make sure to try and Steal from every Gigas you encounter. If
you're in luck, you might get to learn Aera from these guys, but don't sit
around and wait for it, you're on the clock.

Gigas' and Sergeants are the only who will be able to withstand a Frost Rod
Shiva casting when you've leveled normally (15 or higher), so focus Barehanded
punches and swords slinging on them before summoning the mistress of Ice. Steal
whenever you can, especially from Sorcerers as their Gaia Gear truly is
something to want. However, it's only a rare steal...

Now, the rare Steal really rears its ugly head. The chances of actually
stealing the rare item? 10/256. That's right. To illustrate how minor that
chance is, here's a scenario to visualize the entire deal. Imagine a soccer
field, right? A soccer field with 256 guys standing on it, enjoying their day
off from their hellhole job at Taco Bell or something. Now, suppose you were to
enter this soccer field and systematically, without remorse, start kicking
these guys in the nuts. Here and there, you leave 10 lucky individuals alone.
Now, after your job is done, you're panting from all the hard work near the
side-lines and you look on the field. What do you see? You see 246 men groaning
in pain, on their knees, on their face in the grass, asking their absent God
what they did to deserve this. Here and there, you can see one or two men
looking around and wondering what the hell just happened. That acne-infested
teenager you left alone because he isn't going to use his privates in the near
future anyway, standing knee-deep in an average amount of 24 full-grown, crying
men? THAT's your rare steal right there. Good luck with that.

You're automatically Dashing in this stage of the game, but that only goes for
the 'normal' dashing, the one that you could enable with the Auto-Dash ability
from the menu. If you have a Thief, you won't run any faster, which is strange.
Normally, the Thief's Sprint ability stacks with both B-button Dashing and Auto-
Dash, but since in this dungeon normal Dashing is set in stone, Sprint has no
additional effect.

There are plenty of simply great items to obtain while escaping from the
monsters here, so you'll quite simply want to have a !Steal option in your team.
The Thief's superior Agility makes sure he's the best for the job; be sure to
equip the Thief's Gloves too.

You get a 10:00 timer which starts to run as soon as you start to move. The
timer will freeze when using a menu in-battle, but only if you had Battle Mode
set to 'Wait' (check your menu). If you don't make it in time, the screen will
start shaking while a red glow envelops the background. It means that the castle
goes 'BOOM!' and it looks stunningly lame.

You fell down in a room with a pot. This contains water from a Spring of
Recovery, so if Liquid Lame busted you up you can quickly trace back and heal
up. You start the big race in a room with a Save Point, where you can Save.

The first room you dash through is the jail cells you were thrown in by Karnak
soldiers earlier. There are no random encounters here yet. The chest in the
left jail contains 2000 Gil and no monsters. The chest to the right contains an
Elixir and is, as are all Elixir chests, guarded by monsters:

  Sorcerer, Cur Nakk, Cur Nakk (common)
  Gigas (rare)

Karnak Castle ablaze random encounters:
70 % Sergeant, Cur Nakk, Cur Nakk, Cur Nakk
30 % Cur Nakk

This next room knows random encounters. To the right is a chest containing a
Shuriken, an item that you will soon be able to use. Don't miss it. It's
guarded by what appears to be a fixed Gigas encounter. The left chest is even
more vital as it contains a Ribbon. The Ribbon is pretty much the ultimate
helmet of the entire game. It raises Strength, Agility, Vitality and Magic
Power by 5 and protects against Death, Petrify, Toad, Poison, Darkness, Old,
Berserk and Silence. Downside is that only the Dancer Job will be able to equip
it (alongside the Freelancer), so in order to utilize it now would mean going
Freelancer, which hinders progress. This chest is guarded:

Sorcerer, Sorcerer(common)
Gigas (rare)

The next two rooms have no chests but do have random encounters. Continue to
the main hall of Karnak Castle.

There are five entrances/exits here. You come out of one. The one following the
carpet leads into the throne room, where you have nothing to see but random
encounters. The one leading out is one we don't want yet, so it's the two
doors. We'll want to enter both doors and raid everything behind it. Let's
start with the left one.

A room filled with chests of which three are closed. The left-most chest
contains 2000 Gil and is safe to open. Ignore the others for now. Exit using the
stairs to the top-left. You'll find yourself on the walls of Karnak Castle. Dash
to the stairway on the other side and descend to the chest. It contains an Elven
Mantle, and is guarded:

Gigas, Sorcerer, Cur Nakk (common)
Gigas (rare)

Trace back your steps until you're in the room where you left two chests alone.
Open them now: the other two contain Elixirs and are guarded by monsters. The
bottom one contains a fixed Gigas, the other one the following:

Sorcerer, Sorcerer (common)
Gigas (rare)

To the south is a door where you appear on a balcony that connects the left and
right towers. Enter the right tower. This part mirrors what you've just seen,
only there are four chests. The right-most contains a safe 2000 Gil, the other
one close to it contains an Elixir and is guarded by:

Sorcerer, Cur Nakk, Cur Nakk (common)
Gigas (rare)

While the other two ones also contains Elixirs. The top-left is guarded by a
fixed Gigas, the other one is guarded by:

Sorcerer, Cur Nakk, Cur Nakk (common)
Gigas (rare)

Taking the stairs, following the walls and descending to the chest will net you
a fight with:

Gigas, Sorcerer, Cur Nakk (common)
Gigas (rare)

Your reward will be a Main Gauche, a Dagger that will allow the wielder to
block 25 % of all physical attacks before even checking with the Evasion%. It's
a great equip for Jobs that don't need to boost elements but don't physically
attack either. Since it's such a powerful blade, it's about equal on damage
output when boosted by Barehanded Strength, as Barehanded punches. Since the
Main Gauche also gives the extra physical block and allows a Shield, it's a
superior option. Main Gauche, by the way, is French for 'left hand'. Now, 
trace back to the main hall. Before you leave, there are chests on either side 
of you. The left one contains the level 4 White Esuna spell, and is guarded 
by:

Sorcerer, Sorcerer (common)
Gigas (rare)

The right one contains a Thunder Scroll and is guarded by:

Sorcerer, Cur Nakk, Cur Nakk (common)
Gigas (rare)

Now, it's finally time to get out. You should have two minutes or so on the
clock. Make sure you have enough MP to last a few rounds, and make sure your
Learning character has it equipped. Now, get out and face what appears to be a
normal random encounter just when you're about to leave the castle.

Seargeant (Iron Claw in disguise)
Level: 0, HP: 1000, MP: 25
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Potion (common)
Win: Eye Drops (rare)
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze,
  Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Stop, Slow
Attacks: -

Iron Claw
Level: 39, HP: 900, MP: 150
Defense: 20, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Hero Cocktail (common)
Win: Silver Specs (rare)
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Toad, Mini, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep,
  Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Stop, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical, Death Claw

The Cur Nakk monsters are hardly different from their normal counterparts so I
won't list them here. Here's the deal: when you kill all Cur Nakk dogs your
party will notice something strange about the Sergeant:

Bartz: "This guy..."
Lenna: "He's no ordinary soldier!"
Galuf: "Show us your true form!"
Sergeant: "Hahahahaha! You wish to know my true identity? I am the famed bounty
hunter... Iron Claw! MORPH!!!"

At which point Iron Claw will reveal himself to be Iron Claw, a self-declared
great bounty hunter. He proceeds to change form. This process reduces his
maximum HP to 900, but any damage you did to him in his Sergeant form
surpassing his 900 HP will still be there. Iron Claw's Defense shoots up to 20
all of a sudden, (he's made of iron, after all) so physical attacks will kinda
stop hurting him as much. Iron Claw will then start pounding you into fine mist
with his physicals and the Blue spell Death Claw.

Defeating Iron Claw really isn't that big a deal; the problem is that you'll
have to wait for your Blue Mage/Learning character to get hit by Death Claw as
it's truly a nice attack to have. Death Claw is a single-target attack that
reduces the target's HP to a single digit and sets Paralyze. It's like super-
Gravity. As soon as you've bagged Death Claw (it may take a while, it's all
random), you can set something like Sleep or Stop on the guy and whip out some
magical attacks to kill him with. If you're really having trouble, scatter an
elemental Rod to instantly kill the fiend.

Note that it's possible to kill the Sergeant before he transforms, thus
screwing yourself out of the Iron Claw Bestiary entry. Once Iron Claw has been
defeated, quickly escape.

Karnak Castle now explodes. Five of the Crystal shards of the Fire Crystal come
flying to you, but only three land where you stand. The other two are nowhere
to be found. The three shards contain the Ninja, Beastmaster and Geomancer
Jobs.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.13.1  Three Fire Crystal Jobs
**********************************

If you want some in-depth explanation of the three new Jobs, you can check out
more info on the Ninja, the Beastmaster and the Geomancer here:

[NINJA-LINK]    [BEASTM-LINK]    [GEOMANCER-LINK]

For now, let me suffice by saying the following. The Geomancer's !Gaia ability
is great for mages, as it lets them magically attack with powerful damage
output without using MP. The Diamond Bell is worthless, so the Main Gauche is a
great equip for them. If you managed to steal any Gaia Gear, the Geomancer's
Earth-elemental attacks will be boosted by 50%.

The Ninja is awesome all around; their powerful Ninja Scrolls are only hindered
by the Ninja's low Magic Power. Stick !Blue or a high-level magic skillset on
the Ninja to raise it's Magic Power and make the damage really fly. They are
inherently able to wield two weapons; when you have a support ability that lets
them equip better weapons than Knives, you can increase their physical damage
output as well. Barehanded is a great support ability for them, but not to
replace their blades with punches. The highest damage output is obtained by
simply using Barehanded its Strength boost with the dual Knife capacities of the
Ninja. Note that Goblin Punch is based on menu-listed battle power, so Goblin
Punch will use the battle power of both weapons combined! Nice.

The Beastmaster is able to !Catch monsters who have 1/8 their maximum HP or
less. When a monster is caught, !Catch will chance into !Release, which turns
the caught monster loose on the battlefield for it to use a single attack. The
monster will use its own stats. Beastmaster's have a lack of offense in
general, so Barehanded is a great support ability. The Whip will have a 50%
chance of setting Paralyze to opponents with the Magic Beast nature. If you
want to use !Catch, the Blue spell Death Claw immediately puts the target
creature in a weakened enough state to make !Catch work. Repeated Gravity
spells from the Time skillset also works.

The Beastmaster will also learn !Control after a total of 60 ABP, which will
let you control a monster. If you return below deck of the Fire-Powered Ship
and use !Control on a Motor Trap, it is able to use Missile, a Blue spell that
deals 75% of the target's current HP damage. !Control is vital in learning a
few Blue spells in this game, so make sure to learn it if you want a full Blue
skillset. I would strongly advise you take the time to turn one character into
a Beastmaster right away and learn !Control ASAP. For various reasons, I advise
this character to not be Galuf. 

A few quick pointers on !Catch: physical attackers are your main source of
damage, as they will always use the incredibly powerful (Strong) Attack. It's 
real name is 'Attack', but a man's gotta differentiate when a man's gotta
differentiate. For other effects:

Mani Wizard     Death
Undead Husk     Break
Gaelicat        Float
Zu              Breath Wing       Deals 25 % max HP damage, Wind-elemental

Fun fact: Breath Wing always hits, and ignores every check except for elemental
ones. Four released Zu birds will tear apart any target, regardless of HP,
instant death immunity, Heavy nature, the works.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.14.1  En route to the Library of the Ancients
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Aegir (#31), Zu (#32), Grass Tortoise (#34), Silent Bee (#35),
  Mythril Dragon (#36), Dhorme Chimera (#58)

  Container contents:
  Flame Rod

  Miscellaneous items:
  Trident (rare Dhorme Chimera steal)

  Blue Spells:
  Aqua Breath, Transfusion

Cid must be thoroughly devastated. And once you visit him on the Fire-Powered
Ship, this seems to be exactly the case. The poor guy blames himself for the
creation of the machines and the subsequent destruction of the three crystals.
He flees from your sight before you can tell him all is okay. It'd be best to
seek him out.

Karnak city is a chaos with the sudden disappearance of the powers of Fire.
The wounded Queen Karnak is in the top floor of the Inn. Nightmares plague her.
A new weapon salesman has appeared in the Weapon/Armor Shop:

Weapon Shop 2:
Mythril Spear        790 Gil
Kunai                600 Gil
Whip                1100 Gil
Diamond Bell         500 Gil
Some new weapons for your new Jobs, basically, although none of them are very
useful at this point. The Mythril Spear isn't equipable by any Job you
currently have, not even the new ones. There's no reason to buy it, really. The
Kunai adds 1 point to your Agility, but as a weapon it's weaker than the Main
Gauche, the Moonring Blade and the Mage Mashers you could have stolen. Note
that it's a Ninja-only weapon. You already have a Whip, and the Diamond Bell
like almost all bells is worthless.

Cid can be found in the top floor of the Pub, but he doesn't really want to
talk to you. Hey, if he doesn't want to be helped, we can't do that for him.
And sad as it may be, there are more important matters to attend to. We've
still got a single Crystal left, and we have no idea where it is. Maybe the
Ancient Library has some answers for us; with the destruction of Karnak Castle
the path to the place was freed, and since Cid's grandson Mid lives there,
maybe we can send the lad over to Cid to do some cheering.

Don't forget to grab the Flame Rod on the western wall of Karnak, which you can
now reach due to the non-existence of the flames blocking your path.

Grasslands:
35 % Silent Bee, Silent Bee, Silent Bee, Silent Bee
35 % Zu, Grass Tortoise, Aegir
23 % Aegir, Aegir, Grass Tortoise
6  % Zu

Forests:
35 % Mythril Dragon, Silent Bee, Grass Tortoise
35 % Mythril Dragon
30 % Mythril Dragon, Mythril Dragon, Mythril Dragon

Desert:
Always: Dhorme Chimera

Silent Bee rarely uses Needle, a magical attack that sets either Dark or
Silence (equal chance). Unassuming in any other regard, but being blinded is
annoying. Aera on a single Silent Bee works great, as does a conjuration of
Shiva.

Mythril Dragon has great Defense and no elemental weakness, which makes them
quite hard to take down. When it has lost over half their HP (the maximum amount
of which is 600), it will use the Blue spell Transfusion the next turn on any
monster that isn't itself. It's special technique, !Tail, is unblockable and
pierces Defense, so watch out for that. You can steal rare Mythril Armor from
them, but you shouldn't waste time as you can simply buy them in Karnak too.
They very rarely drop Mythril Gloves, too.

Dhorme Chimera
Level: 23, HP: 1000, MP: 150
Defense: 20, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Trident (rare)
Win: Phoenix Down (rare)
Absorbs: Water
Special Technique: !Critical Attack
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack, Aqua Breath

Dhorme Chimera is the most interesting enemy right now. They live in the
desert, and are mentioned by a scholar in Karnak. They're supposed to be quite
frightening. They can either use Battle, !Critical (x 1.5) and the Blue spell
Aqua Breath. Since they have a Defense and Magic Defense score of 20 and have
1000 HP, you'll be hard-pressed to kill them quickly. I suggest you Save on the
Overworld Map and wander into the desert with a Blue Mage or the Learning
support ability equipped. Level 2 elemental Black spells hurt him relatively
badly, as do Axes/Hammers, Shiva and Released Grass Tortoises.

Make sure to learn Aqua Breath here. Aqua Breath is a crazy expansive Blue
magic spell. It's multi-target and NON-elemental. That's right, no Water
element there. What it does have it the fact it deals eight times as much
damage to Desert creatures. An upcoming boss battle will feature a creature of
this type, so you'll absolutely want to pick it up; you will return here when
your levels are a bit higher though, so you can postpone if you're so inclined.

Transfusion can be learned in the forests surrounding the Library of the
Ancients. The White Confuse spell can confuse the Mythril Dragon which will in
turn have a chance to cast Transfusion on a character with the Learning ability.
The Beastmaster's !Control ability is superior, obviously, as it allows you to
choose Transfusion's target at will, but you probably don't have it yet.

Now, enter the Library of the Ancients, where answers await.

Note: you could continue down south-west, where you could eventually enter the
desert there. Despite the fact the quicksand stops you from entering too far
you could net a random encounter or two. There's no point in doing so though,
so I won't mention them until you're forced to pass through.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.14.2  The Library of the Ancients and the battle with Ifrit
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Page 32 (#45), Page 64 (#46), Page 128 (#47), Page 256 (#48), Ifrit (#253),
  Byblos (#254)

  Container contents:
  Ether, Ninja Suit, Phoenix Down

  Miscellaneous items:
  Dark Matter (rare Byblos steal), Green Beret (rare Page 32 steal), Ninja Suit
  (rare Page 256 steal)

  Summon Spells:
  Ifrit

  Blue Spells:
  Aera, Level 5 Death, Magic Hammer, Moon Flute, Off-Guard

Everything's a mess lately, and the Library of the Ancients is no exception.
Cid's grandson, Mid, is missing, which is especially alarming since the books
in the dark halls of the Library of the Ancients have been taken over by
monsters increasingly often. In past times the Summoned Monster Ifrit would
burn books possessed by monsters, but for some reason he threw in the towel as
well. Our mission is to find Mid, as nobody else seems to be able to help us
out...

On the second floor is a pot containing water from a Spring of Recovery, and
all the way upstairs, near a furnace, three books await you. The left and middle
ones are tomes of ancient wisdom (or whatever) while the right book shows you
exactly what all this talk of possessed books is all about.

Page 32, Page 64 (common)
Page 32, Page 64, Page 128, Page 256, Page 128, Page 64, Page 32 (rare)

Page 32 looks like a living gargoyle of some sort, and wields the Blue Aera
spell. It has a Green Beret as a rare Steal, so if you have a place for any
more of them, try to go for it. Weak to Fire-elemental attacks like all pages.
It will use the Banish spell when Released, allowing it to possibly one-shot
the difficult boss at the end.

Page 64 is the most lethal of the four pages as it wields the Blue spell Level
5 Death, which immediately kills any character with a level divisible by 5. It
can also only be learned when the attack actually works, so if you find
yourself at level 16 you won't be able to learn it now. If you have a party of
level 15 characters, I suggest you go train outside until one or more (but not
all!) of your characters has reached level 16. Take the level 15 character(s)
in as Blue Mages and watch them get killed. Win the battle, heal up (or vice
versa) and you've gained knowledge over the thing. Page 64 has Silver Specs as
a rare Steal, which shouldn't excite you.

Level 5 Death in this dungeon works on both Page 64 and Page 128, but at 22 MP
it's a bit pricey to use often.

Page 128 fails to deliver in both Blue spells and rare Steals, and has none in
either category. As a common steal, however, it has an Ether, which is pretty
useful to carry around in a game where MP can see depletion. It can use Slimer,
which sets Slow and the Sap status. Weak to Fire, blah. 

Page 256 is obviously the grandest of pages. Every other turn, it'll use Moon
Flute on your party, which anyone equipped to do so will immediately learn. As
a Blue spell Moon Flute targets the own party, but Page 256 turns it against
you. As a rare steal, it has a Ninja Suit, which is equal to the Mythril Armor
in defenses but can also be equipped by Clothes classes, adds a respectable
single point to your Agility and isn't nowhere near as heavy. If you were to
!Control a Page 256, it can use Off-Guard, a Blue spell you can learn.
Off-Guard halves the target's Defense and Magic Defense, making upcoming
attacks more damaging. Not a vital Blue spell to be honest, but it can't hurt.

  Dark rooms:
  35 % Page 32, Page 64
  35 % Page 64, Page 32, Page 64
  23 % Page 64, Page 256, Page 32
   6 % Page 32, Page 64, Page 128, Page 256, Page 128, Page 64, Page 32

  Ninja Suit room and the room leading to it:
  35 % Page 64, Page 64, Page 64
  35 % Page 32, Page 32, Page 128, Page 128
  23 % Page 128, Page 128, Page 256
   6 % Page 32, Page 64, Page 128, Page 256, Page 128, Page 64, Page 32

  Other rooms:
  35 % Page 64, Page 128, Page 128, Page 32
  35 % Page 32, Page 64, Page 128
  23 % Page 128, Page 64, Page 256, Page 128
   6 % Page 32, Page 64, Page 128, Page 256, Page 128, Page 64, Page 32

Since you'll only be fighting one enemy at the time, any Berserker would be
glad to fight here. The Geomancer's !Gaia ability will often call up Ignus
Fatuus, which despite its random nature is Fire-elemental and will often kill a
page in a single shot. Setting !Gaia on a Black Mage or Summoner with a Flame
Rod will boost its power even further. Be sure to learn the three Blue spells
here, they're all grand.

Note that one Page calling another upon defeat is a counter-attack it has to
perform. When you prevent the counter-attack from happening, it'll be the last
opponent even if it's scripted to call more. When you kill an enemy with a
Counter attack, use !Catch to remove it from the battle or Release a Page 32
and have it cast Banish with success, no further enemies will be called.

Anyway, heal up at the pot and dive into the twisted maze that is the Library.
Shit, you can never find what you're looking for in these places, am I right?
This one's infested with demons too, so it's double the amount of nasty. As
soon as you enter, you find your path blocked, but when you push on you'll see
how the bookshelf makes way for you. Here's how to navigate through this room:

- Stand in the hole in the bookshelf you can reach
- Pass through the other two holes you can now reach
- Go up the ladder and go as far to the top-right as you can. The bookshelf
  should move
- Continue as far to the right as possible. More moving should ensue.
- Down the ladder. See the missing stone in the top-right corner? Use the
  action button to make way into the next room.

Aye-aye-aye, a limited field view! Also, random encounters. Find the Ether in
the chest to the right before you exit this room.

In this next room, you need to go down a ladder. There's a chest you can't
reach, a door and a ladder. The ladder doesn't seem to go anywhere, so let's
try the door. No luck; a rebellious bookshelf refuses to let us pass. The
ladder instead! Going up and pressing the action button sends us walking over
bookshelves towards a book. Heal up, open the book and meet Ifrit, the demon of
fire.

Ifrit
Level: 22, HP: 3000, MP: 1000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Phoenix Down (common)
Win: Flame Scroll (always)
Absorbs: Fire
Nullifies: Poison
Weakness: Water, Ice
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !High Kick
Special Technique Effect: adds Paralyze
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Paralyze, Confuse,
  Berserk, Silence, Stop, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !High Kick, Fira, Blaze

Ifrit used to burn books with demons in them; he is much feared by all those
sealed within the ancient tomes of this Library. But lately, he has become
dormant, and now the Warriors of Light must wade through the evil Pages. Ifrit
itself now offers you the use of its powers, but only to those that can avoid
being burned to a crisp...

Ifrit knows four different attacks, all of which will look familiar. Fira is a
powerful spell that at normal levels really cripples a single character and at
lower levels will kill one. Blaze is deals (max HP / 4) like it always does;
Ifrit's Special !High Kick will set Paralyze along with dealing damage, so
watch out.

The fiery fiend is weak to Ice-elemental attacks. Also Water-elemental ones,
but you can't take advantage of that right now. He also has a whole slew of
status vulnerabilities, but since he is Heavy some of them will only work for a
very short period of time, including Silence, Paralyze and Stop. Flash sets
Darkness for the duration of the battle though, so that really helps stop those
!High Kicks of his.

Mystic Knights can choose either Blizzara or Silence Spellblade effects;
Blizzara deals incredible damage obviously (especially paired with Twohanded),
but Silence Spellblade effects stop Fira spells. Both strategies will prove to
be incredibly effective. Frost Rod-boosted Blizzara spells or Shiva conjuration
deals large amounts of damage. If you are having trouble, use !Catch to get a
Page 128 on your side, it'll deal over 1000 damage in a single attack.

Confuse isn't worth it, really. It'll make him cast Firaga on himself, which
heals him by quite a lot. Make sure to avoid !Gaia, as the resulting Ignus
Fatuus will heal Ifrit. The confusing part will work, but as previously said,
he'll start healing like a madman so in all, just no.

After the fight, you'll gain 5 ABP, a Flame Scroll and the power to summon
Ifrit. Ifrit is a slightly more powerful and Fire-elemental version of Shiva,
basically. If you have any Summoners around, swap the Frost Rod for a Flame Rod
and start using Ifrit's Hellfire instead. Even though Ifrit is thematically
connected to defeating the encounters in this Library, Fira is actually both
more powerful and slightly cheaper on your MP...

With Ifrit as an ally, the bookshelf that impeded your progress earlier
suddenly remembers he needs to call his mother instead and lets you through.
Don't miss the hole you can pass through to obtain a Ninja Suit; it's awesome
for your Clothes class character(s), and is an upgrade from the Mythril Armor
as well.

Continuing will give you another dark room. The right exit will take you
nowhere, the left exit will take you almost directly past a chest containing a
Phoenix Down before taking you to the large hall. It seems we're almost to the
bottom, and still no sign of Mid.

In this next room, the final room, the path is pretty clear; push against the
bookshelf to make it move, go stand on the tiny ladder and press the action
button to make it move back. Instead of going out of the door, stand on the
other tiny ladder and examine the bookshelf; a book will pop out for:

Page 32, Page 64 (common)
Page 32, Page 64, Page 128, Page 256, Page 128, Page 64, Page 32 (rare)

The hole your fighting created takes you to a Save Point. Heal and Save up and
continue. You'll find yourself seeing Mid, who seems unresponsive. Also, a
horned demon comes to kill you!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.14.3  The battle with Byblos
**********************************

Byblos
Level: 24, HP: 3600, MP: 1000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 30
Evasion: 30%, Magic Evasion: 20%
Steal: Dark Matter (rare), Luck Mallet (common)
Win: Iron Draft (always)
Absorbs: Water, Wind, Earth, Holy, Poison, Lightning, Ice
Weakness: Holy, Fire
Creature: Magic Beast
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Paralyze, Berserk, Slow
Attacks: Battle, Armor, Confuse, Drain, Toad, Magic Hammer, Dischord, Web,
  Wind Slash

Byblos was once found near the Wind Shrine, some thirty years ago, and was
taken to the Library of the Ancients and sealed there after what we can assume
was a long battle with Ifrit. He's loose again now, so it's time to stop him.

1st turn: Web, Magic Hammer, Battle
2nd turn: Battle, Confuse, Wind Slash
3rd turn: Magic Hammer, Battle, Web
4th turn: Dischord, Wind Slash, Battle

Some new attacks here. Web sets Slow, easy as that. Magic Hammer is a Blue
spell that halves the target's MP. Wind Slash is easily Byblos' most dangerous
attack; it's a multi-target Wind-elemental attack that can hurt as much as 260
(Clothes characters) to 170 (Gaia Gear Magic characters).

When Byblos is hurt to the point of 800 HP or below, he'll start countering
your attacks. Any physical attack will be countered with a 33% Protect spell on
Byblos' self, any Magic attack will be countered with a 33 % Toad spell on the
caster and any other attack will have a 66 % shot at provoking a Drain spell,
which is quite nasty as it deals around 170 damage.

The two biggest weaknesses Byblos have are the Fire element and its lack of
Heavy nature, the latter of which can be exploited with Death Claw, Missile,
Gravity and a Released Page 32 its Banish spell. Banish will instantly kill
Byblos, Gravity and Missile will deal tremendous amounts of damage and Death
Claw will reduce Byblos' HP to a single digit. Note that it also adds Paralyze,
so if you kill Byblos when he's Paralyzed you won't get his little goodbye
speech. Some other things that work are a Beastmaster Whip's Paralyzing powers
(especially in tandem with Slow, which makes the status last longer) and
Remora's Constrict.

On the Fire-elemental weakness; Fira is stronger than Ifrit, even if the latter
is hyped a little versus Byblos. Twohanded Fira swords deal incredible amounts
of damage but are made less effective by Protect in the end. You have at least
one and possibly more Flame Scroll(s); Ninjas can Throw them for great amount
of damage, especially when a Magic-boosted action ability such as !Black 1 is
set on the Ninja.

You don't really need to learn Magic Hammer as it's not that good of a spell,
but if you want to here's it to learn. Don't frustrate your progress because of
it; you'll have plenty chances in the future, and you won't have a good reason
to use it before learning the spell is made possible by an easy random
encounter. You can try to Steal as well; a Mallet is pretty crappy, but Dark
Matter (although useless now) can be an item of great power in the future.

If you've killed Byblos un-Paralyzed, he'll say:

Arrrgh!
So, this is the end... but only for me.
Very soon, the master's seal
will be blown wide open!!!

If the final blow was dealt by Ifrit's Hellfire, he'll say:

Ifrit...!
The seal... You've...
Very soon, the master's seal
will be blown wide open!!!

We've fought against being controlled by the dark nameless entity, and normal
monsters so far. However, Byblos is the first powerful demon we face who is
actually supporting his 'master'.

When Byblos is ashes to ashes, dust to dust, Mid'll take you out of the
Library, only to abandon you in search of his grandfather. Let's follow him;
Mid mentioned how he could get the Fire-Powered Ship running again which
certainly would be useful for us.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.15.1  The Seven Seas
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Sahagin (#193), Thunder Anemone (#194), Sea Ibis (#195), Corbett (#196)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Lightning Scroll (common Thunder Anemone drop), Trident (rare Corbett steal)

  Blue Spells:
  Goblin Punch

When you chase after Mid and find Cid in the second floor of the Pub again, Mid
enters with you and slaps some sense back into the old man. Also, they storm
off to go fix you up some Fire-Powered Ship. Going up after them (there's a lot
or following Cid & Mid from now one, better get used to it) will further the
plot.

Galuf finally tells you the backbone of the story. The dark mage Exdeath was
sealed 30 years ago in this world by the power of the Crystals. Galuf was one
of the four people who did this. So the meteor that appeared at the start of
this game carried Galuf, the meteor near Walse tower sent the golden warrior
and finally the meteor near Karnak came with the Werewolf, all bent on stopping
the release of the seal on Exdeath.

Galuf passes out from the hard work of remembering. Alas, we've got ourselves
a Fire-Powered Ship to boss around. Let's take a look at the Map (R button)!

See the white dot to the South-West? That's Jachol, our first stop. We'll also
be visiting the South-Eastern crescent-shaped island. It's was named Crescent
Island by the Unoriginal People in the Sky.

On the seas, you will find yourself being attacked every now and again.
Lightning-elemental attacks are nice to have so Black casters will have a good
time. Note that while !Gaia was awesome all the time, it's not so hot on the
Fire-Powered Ship. Tsunami is just moderate non-elemental damage to all
targets, and Whirlpool reduces the non-Heavy targets to a single digit of HP.

Sahagin are fishmen, weak to Lightning. You can Control them to see Goblin
Punch, but you should already have it.

Sea Ibis only has 25 HP. They have crazy Evasion and Magic Evasion though,
so you'll want unblockable attacks to nail them. Shiva/Ifrit, Goblin Punch,
just some options for you. Another thing to know, by the way, is that
floating/flying enemies often are incapable of avoiding Aerial attacks. Aerial
attacks are Bows and Whips. Beastmasters will Whip them up good, is what I'm
saying. EVERY time.

Thunder Anemones suck because they absorb Lightning-elemental attacks. You
can't MT Thundara when they're around. They have no elemental weakness either.
They compensate for being stupid by dropping Lightning Scrolls all the time.

To the North-West, you may find Corbettes. They're mean mothers. They have 2800
HP, are weak to Lightning-elemental attacks and dish out mean physical attacks
and Breath Wing. Flash is a great spell to utilize against them, and using
!Control takes them right out of the battle. Gravity spells deal a lot of
damage, and Death Claw simply destroys them if it connects. They'll be able to
use Tailscrew when Controlled (also when used through !Release), so you can use
their own attacks against them.

While the allocation of these encounters across the Overworld Map is a complex
science the people of NASA only recently figured out, it's also extremely
unimportant to you. But, just for being thorough:

Image the Overworld Map divided into 64 squares in an 8 by 8 fashion. Each
square has a monster formation pack that you can encounter on the seas, even
when there is no water there for you to sail on. The monster formations are
distributed as follows:

  Monster Formatio Pack 0
  58 % Sahagin x3
  42 % Thunder Anemone x2, Sahagin

  Monster Formatio Pack 1
  35 % Sea Ibis, Sahagin x2
  35 % Sea Ibis x3
  23 % Sahagin x3
   6 % Thunder Anemone x2, Sahagin

  Monster Formatio Pack 2
  35 % Sea Ibis, Thunder Anemone x2
  35 % Thunder Anemone x2, Sahagin
  23 % Sahagin, Thunder Anemone, Corbett
   6 % Corbett x2

  Monster Formatio Pack 3
  35 % Sahagin x3
  35 % Sea Ibis, Thunder Anemone x2
  23 % Corbett x2
   6 % Sahagin, Thunder Anemone, Corbett

  2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3
  2 2 2 2 3 0 0 3
  2 2 0 0 0 0 0 3
  3 3 0 0 0 0 0 3
  3 3 0 0 0 0 3 3
  3 3 0 0 1 1 1 1
  3 3 0 0 1 1 1 1
  3 3 3 3 1 1 1 1

So, to be perfectly clear, in the top-left corner of the Overworld Map, you
will run into the monster formations found in Monster Formation Pack 2. You
will notice that Packs 2 and 3 (the more difficult Packs) tend to appear on
the edges of the Overworld, Pack 0 (the easiest Pack) is mostly encountered in
those bodies of water enclosed by land and Pack 1 (the Sea Ibis-heavy Pack) is
found around Crescent Island.

You won't naturally come across Corbett enemies when you just sail from
destination to destination. If you want to encounter them, just Quicksave
and sail along the Western edge of the Overworld map. Corbett can prove
especially formidable opponents at this stage of the game, as their physical
attacks are quite devastating and they have 2800 HP.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.16.1  The shores of Jachol
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Bomb (#49), Doublizard (#50), Bio Soldier (#51)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Battle Axe (common Bio Soldier steal), War Hammer (rare Bio Soldier steal)

  Blue Spells:
  Self-Destruct

  Darkgreen grasslands leading to Jachol:
  35 % Bomb, Bomb, Doublizard
  35 % Bio Soldier, Bio Soldier
  23 % Bomb, Bomb
   6 % Bomb, Bomb, Bomb, Bomb

  All light-green grasslands:
  35 % Bio Soldier, Bio Soldier
  35 % Bomb, Bomb, Bomb, Bomb
  30 % Bomb, Bomb

  Forest and dark-green grasslands on the peninsula:
  35 % Bomb, Bomb
  35 % Bomb, Bomb, Doublizard
  23 % Doublizard, Doublizard, Doublizard
   6 % Bomb, Bomb, Bomb, Bomb

Don't be deceived by your gut instinct or even prior Final Fantasy knowledge;
Bomb is not a Fire-elemental monster which is weak to Ice or something silly
like that. All it does is attack physically and use Self-Destruct on rare
occasions. You can learn it here if you somehow missed it/couldn't retrieve it
from the Motor Trap enemies in the Fire-Powered Ship.

Doublizards are weak to Ice-elemental attacks, as you'll find most lizard-like
and dragon-like enemies to be. They're kinda sturdy but generally unassuming.
When they turn around, exactly nothing happens; all that happens is that they
will use a Battle attack when they're facing you with their 'normal' face, and
when the turn around to attack with their lower face (the one they don't start
with, I mean... all this trouble to refrain from using the word "Ass-face" isn't
worth it) they'll use !Slip, which adds the Sap status.

Bio Soldier is the strongest enemy here and has the potential to be very very
dangerous. When they're with another Bio Soldier all is well, as they'll just
use Battle. However, when a lone Bio Soldier is damaged, it'll counter with a
Bio spell on the entire party, dealing over 200 damage to all characters. If a
Ninja or Monk hits twice and doesn't manage to kill the guy, this even means
TWO Bio spells. Avoid it at all costs. Another notable feature about the Bio
Soldier is its common Battle Axe and rare War Hammer. The former is the weakest
Axe/Hammer there is and could be previously bought in Walse, but the latter is
stronger than the Ogre Axe you could purchase in Jachol and might be worth
going for if you like Berserkers.

...

Doublizards go both ways.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.16.2  The town of Jachol
**********************************

  Features:
  Piano

Jachol's a town of adventurers, of which the armor and weapons are known
throughout the world. It's a village inhabited by descendants of the ancient
Ronka civilization, and many rare treasures are said to be found in the
surroundings. It's a good place for us.

Armor Shop:
Green Beret         2500 Gil
Ninja Suit          3000 Gil
Sage's Surplice     1000 Gil
 It's fairly straightforward here. Buy Green Berets for every character that
could benefit from one (remember: Blue and Red Mages also can equip it, so if
you are planning on using either one on a Magic character, you could want to
buy GB's for them). Ninja Suits for every Heavy Armor and Clothes class
character, and Sage's Surplice for the Magic characters. They're not as good as
Gaia Gear on the defenses, so you shouldn't buy them for characters that
already have Gaia Gear. Sage's Surplice grants immunity to the Silence status,
which is a nice feature for spellcasters on paper. Enemies will almost never try
to Silence you, though, and it won't stop Mute.

Weapon Shop:
Ogre Killer         3200 Gil
Coral Sword         2800 Gil
Mage Masher          900 Gil
Trident             2700 Gil
Ashura              5800 Gil
Silver Bow          1500 Gil
 Quite a few new and powerful weapons, but most of them are fairly redundant.
The Ogre Killer is stronger than any Mythril Hammer you might wield, but both
the War Hammer (rare steal from the Bio Soldier which roams near Jachol) and
the Death Sickle are stronger so you might not even want to spend your money
here if you do utilize Berserkers. Note how it says it's effective against
giant's... There are no giant-type enemies in this game! The Coral Sword is
simply a stronger sword for everybody who uses swords. It's Lightning-elemental
too. The Mage Masher is a weapon you should have in abundance by now, but buy
them for appropriate characters if you don't. The Trident is a Lightning-
elemental Spear, but without any Job to equip it there's no point.
The Ashura is still the best weapon you could hope to wield at this point, but
again, it's not worth switching to Freelancer for. The Silver Bow, finally, is
a fairly crappy two-handed Back Row weapon that no Job can equip.

Magic Shop:
Cura                 620 Gil
Raise                700 Gil
Confuse              650 Gil
Silence              280 Gil
Protect              280 Gil
Cure                 180 Gil
Libra                 80 Gil
Poisona               90 Gil
 Missed any White spells in Karnak? You can buy them here.

Item Shop:
Potion                40 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Tent                 250 Gil
 Well, you know. Same old.

The Pub houses several NPC's all talking about the Cave of Jachol to the north.
That's very interesting. There's a piano on the stage, which you should totally
play! This is the first time your performance is more than just some scales;
it's the first exercise from Le Piano Virtuose by Charles-Louis Hanon, but it's
basically still a fancy scale practice. But it has a name and it's in French,
and everybody knows French piano is better than regular piano.

Also, you can dance with the lady, but the subsequent scene is so
mind-numbingly stupid it just might wake you up from this dreamworld and make
you realize you're playing a game again. So don't.

There's very little to do in this town besides gathering up stuff for the Cave,
so let's go to the Cave. I hear there's treasure. It's handy to have some
Phoenix Downs handy; the monsters in the Cave of Jachol might decide to
randomly kill characters and you want to be prepared. Since this part is
optional, you can also skip it and wait for a moment where you can access
this dungeon through a short-cut, or until much much later when the treasure
is mostly useless but the danger is also gone. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.16.3  Jachol Cave
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Nutkin (#6), Skull Eater (#57)

  Container contents:
  Blitz Whip, Shuriken, Tent

Welcome to the Cave of Jachol. Here's what's going down. There are a few
treasures here, and random encounters of the bizarre kind. They're either Nut
Eaters (those Regen-squirrels you met around the Wind Shrine at the very start
of the game) and Skull Eaters. Concerning the latter, you either destroy them
with the very limited range of attacks capable of destroying them, or you'll
probably die hoping for them to use Flee rather than 1600-damage dealing
physicals.

65 % Nutkin x 3
35 % Skull Eater x 6

The Nutkins pose no threat whatsoever. !Kick is very efficient at dealing with
them in a single attack as it costs no MP. Whatever-you-have also works.

Skull Eater
Level: 32, HP: 1, MP: 100
Defense: 90, Magic Defense: 90
Evasion: 90%, Magic Evasion: 90%
Steal: Tent (common)
Win: Elixir (rare)
Creature: Magic Beast
Special Technique: !Front Teeth
Special Technique Effect: Unblockable, adds poison & confuse
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Toad, Mini, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep,
  Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Incisor, Flee, (summon 6 Skull Eaters)

The Skull Eaters are an entirely different story. They have exactly 1 HP, but
their defenses are both 90, meaning they're almost impenetrable. They will
'counter' any Magic spell they survive by summoning five other Skull Eaters
around them, effectively spelling your doom. Physically, they're incredibly
powerful; their Special !Incisor is both barrier-piercing and unblockable and
will deal around 1600 damage to a Front Row character. It's supposed to set
Poison and Confuse, just sets Poison in reality, but in all practical aspects
just kills a character in a single hit. Undeniably the best way to deal with
them is setting !Black 1 or !Blue or something that boosts Magic Power to a
Ninja and have that Ninja Throw a Scroll. It kills the Skull Eater, no questions
asked. If you consider this option too pricey or should you find yourself with
sharply limited amounts of Scrolls (which would be the case if you followed
this walkthrough faithfully), your other opion is !Gaia.

It'll either summon a Stalactite attack which kills the Skull Eater (it's a
very powerful attack) or use Ignus Fatuus, which will confuse it half of the
time. With a Flame Rod equipped, it may even kill it. If it uses !Incisor on
itself, it's dead. If not, it's Battle, re-directing Skull Eater's attention to
you without dealing any damage. Try again! Note that you won't get a listing
from a Skull Eater in your Bestiary until you actually kill one.

If you, for some reason, don't want to use !Gaia or !Throw, you can simply
outlast the Skull Eater with Phoenix Downs and Raise spells, since they'll
only kill one character maximum every turn. Every turn they have a 1/3 chance
of using Flee, so it's a waiting game this way. A costly one, since Raise is
MP-heavy and Phoenix Downs slam a hole in your wallet, but two White or Red
casters should suffice to keep your team alive throughout the cave.

One last thing about Skull Eaters; since a !Black or !Blue-boosted Ninja
scroll kills Skull Eaters, you can 'summon' five more Skull Eaters and kill
them all with a Ninja scroll, thus gaining more Gil and Experience from them.
A Thief outspeeds a Ninja and can hit with any straight damage attack from the 
!Blue skillset, summoning five grey critters while the Ninja finishes them
off in a single swoop. 

Also note that the Cave of Jachol is somewhat of an ABP goldmine, since the
Skull Eaters give 5 ABP and you'll see them often. This could be a good time to
learn, say, the Beastmaster's !Control. I suggest you make at least a single
character a Ninja; no punishment by any means, the Ninja gives a boost to your
Preemptive attack rate, which increases your odds of besting a Skull Eater prior
to it killing a character.

The skull switch next to the entrance does nothing now and is only meant to
open the entrance if you want to back-track. Pressing the other skull switch
pushes back a large rock wall, freeing the path to a line-up of skull switches.
Once you reach it, you could go pressing skull switches like some kind of
moron, but that's not the way to go. Simply wait, and eventually the 'true'
skull switch will be the only one not to disappear. Quickly press it before the
other ones come back (making the skull switch ineffective) and another path
opens. The door here is won't open, but there's a button in the opened chest
next to it to open it.

Crap, another opened chest even in this new room. However, all other chests
contain items! There's a Shuriken and a Tent in the two chests you can easily
reach to the left. Walk around to the third (and final) chest, and you may be
able to open it for a Blitz Whip, but only if you haven't released Lone Wolf
back in Walse Castle. If you have, the treasure will be gone.

The Blitz Whip has a 33 % chance of casting Thunder (it's a non-elemental
weapon by itself) so it won't paralyze creatures like the normal Whip does.
Still Back Row OK like all whips, and it's Battle Power equals that of the
Ashura (though damage output will be lower due to the Ashura's critical hits).
A Beastmaster with Barehanded and the Blitz Whip deals comparable damage to a
Monk of equal level punching in the Front Row.

This is all. You can climb out of the north wall to enter the Overworld Map
(possibly to use a Tent or to Save). Simply track back by logical means.
You have no business in Jachol either anymore, so let's get back on the
Fire-Powered Ship!

Now, sails to the south-west until you've gone around the continent and then
set sail for the south. You'll pass the map's edge and appear north; there's a
continent to your south-east (the far north-west corner of the map). And on
this continent, there is a town! It's Istory, town of waterfalls, another
summon beast, sheep and a new Black spell.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.17.1  Shores of Istory
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Black Flame (#53), Stone Golem (#54)

  Blue Spells:
  Dark Spark

  Light-green grasslands:
  Always: Black Flame, Black Flame, Black Flame, Black Flame, Black Flame

  Dark-green grasslands:
  58 % Stone Golem, Black Flame, Black Flame
  42 % Black Flame, Black Flame, Black Flame, Black Flame, Black Flame

Black Flames have a 50 % Evasion rating and a fairly high Magic Defense. Pair
that with their absorption of Wind, Earth, Holy and Poison (meaning !Gaia is
useless against them) and you've got some resistant cretins. They also wield
Dark Spark, a Blue spell that halves the targets level when successful. Next to
normal level-based Hit Rate checks, it can't be blocked by any means so it
works on any target once you get around to a possible horrible Hit Rate. The
way to go, if possible, is multi-target magical attacks that don't suffer in
power when multi-targeted. Black Flames can't avoid the effects of !Sing, so
Romeo's Ballad is quite effective in Stopping them if you already have a Bard
around. Flame Rod Hellfire performed by Ifrit is a good one, Aqua Breath is
expensive but successful, and especially the Ninja's scrolls work like a charm
(while Black Flame is weak to Water- elemental attacks, you'll probably only
have Thunder Scrolls in mass). Learn Dark Spark!

Now children, it is time to learn about Dark Spark.

Dark Spark halves the target's level and rounds down when the result isn't a
whole number. Dark Spark has a poor hit rate, but nothing is immune to it! Dark
Spark cuts down offense of the affected target obviously, but the target's level
is also affected when levels are checked for various attacks, such as Goblin
Punch, Level 5 Death, the works. Since Level 5 Death ignores Death immunity as
well as the Heavy nature, smart application of Dark Spark spell can net you a
two-turn instant defeat. In addition, if you didn't learn Level 5 Death earlier
because your level wasn't right at the time, know that you can also affect your
own level with Dark Spark, learning is now an option if you can take your level
to something that can be divided by 5.

Stone Golems are the opposite. They won't evade anything, but their Magic
Defense is through the roof (50) and their Defense is fairly solid as well.
The real kicker is their inherent Protect status that halves all physical
damage done to them, even those that would normally ignore Defense. They're
weak versus Lightning-elemental attacks, meaning Thunder Rod Thundara spells,
Lightning Scrolls, Two-Handed Coral Swords and things like that work really
well. Like all stone monsters, Stone Golem will die automatically when a Gold
Needle item is used on it, which is also an option. They make quite potent
lackeys as well; when Released, they perform Earthquake, an MT Earth-elemental
attack that deals around 600 damage.

You can, of course, prance into the forest, but I'll talk about all that
after visiting Istory.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.17.2  The town of Istory
**********************************

  Black Spells:
  Toad

  Songs:
  Romeo's Ballad

Welcome to the one-Starbucks town called Istory. There are a few sights to
behold, so let's scout around.

Armor Shop:
Flame Ring         50000 Gil
Coral Ring         50000 Gil
Angel Ring         50000 Gil
 If you're having horrible flashbacks to endless Gil-hoarding games such as the
original Final Fantasy, don't worry. You are not expected to buy any of these
at this time; if you've been leveling you may have enough Gil to buy one, but
you shouldn't as it will seriously cut your financial supplies you'll need in
the future. Fluctuation-buffers are the basis of any responsible financial
plan, I dare say! Just for kicks (or if you do decide to buy one of these right
now or in the near future, which wouldn't be unthinkable per se):

The Flame and Coral Rings concern themselves with elemental properties. The
Flame Ring allows you to absorb Fire-elemental attacks and nullify the effects
of Ice-elemental attacks. Water-elemental attacks will deal double damage,
however. Also, it grants 5 Defense, 5 Magic Defense and 5% extra Magic Block.

The Coral Ring is the opposite of the Flame Ring, kinda. It absorbs Water-
elemental attacks, nullifies Fire-elemental attacks and takes double damage
from Lightning-elemental attacks. Also, 5 Defense, 5 Magic Defense and 5%
extra Magic Block.

The Angel Ring has no elemental properties. Instead, it gives 10 (!) Magic
Defense, 5 Defense, 10 % extra Magic Block and protects against the Old and
Zombie status ailments. If you were to buy anything, I'd suggest this one;
while the status immunities probably aren't as useful as the elemental
properties (now), the sheer defensive properties of the Angel Ring as incredibly
useful in this stage of the game.

A hint: with a Flame Ring equipped any character with access to a Flame Bow or
a self-targetable Fire-elemental spell can now heal itself/any target with a
Flame Ring equipped. This is useful information in single Job challenges. Black
Mages will want them for a far easier time, and Archers can do it as well.
Flame Rings are a staple of a lot of challenges, as a lot of Single Class
Challenges are such can only be completed by getting four Flame Rings here.

Magic Shop:
Gravity              620 Gil
Stop                 580 Gil
Haste                320 Gil
Mute                 320 Gil
Slow                  80 Gil
Regen                100 Gil
 Yeah, whatever. You should be able to cast any of the above anyway. If you
haven't, here's where you can buy them again.

Item Shop:
Potion                40 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Tent                 250 Gil
 Normal items, but do note the hidden passage here leading to the back room!
There's nothing there, some item shop owners just like their privacy. These
guys live here, there are no normal houses in FFVA towns. You try bringing home
a girl and running a 24-hour Item Shop.

A little girl tips you off on a small surprise regarding the flowerbed. If you
touch all the flower squares, the middle one will open up, a frog will come
leaping out and give you the Black Toad spell. Sweet! Too bad it's not a
Spellblade spell, really...to be more accurate, the exact requirements for
obtaining the Toad spell are this:

Touch all x squares and then touch the @ square:

x0x
0 0
x0@

Nah, not really useful to know, but for trivia :P

The big happening of the town is the sheep pen. Seems even duller than where I
was born. The sheep in the bottom-right corner isn't a sheep at all, rather a
girl in a Beastmaster costume. The sheep in the top-left corner is angry with
the world and what it gives him, and rather than resorting to such gems as 'One
step closer' by Linkin Park, he decides to kick you over the fence... but only
if you talk to it from behind. Here, you'll meet a bard who teaches you Romeo's
Ballad if you answer his question with 'Yes'. You're not lying, after all.

Romeo here obviously referring to Shakespeare's play. Romeo was in love with
some wench called Rosaline, but promptly forgot her upon meeting thirteen-year
old Julia at some fancy dress party. He sneaks out and calls to his Julia on
the balcony. Long story short, everybody dies and it's all Cupid's fault. Best
to stay indoors and play video games instead!

   O, she doth teach the torches to burn bright!
   It seems she hangs upon the cheek of night
   Like a rich jewel in an Ethiope's ear;
   Beauty too rich for use, for earth too dear!
   So shows a snowy dove trooping with crows,
   As yonder lady o'er her fellows shows.
   The measure done, I'll watch her place of stand,
   And, touching hers, make blessed my rude hand.
   Did my heart love till now? forswear it, sight!
   For I ne'er saw true beauty till this night.

You can't perform Songs yet, I know. You'll be able to sing in the future,
though. You can do anything you set your mind to. No, I mean it. Really.

Now, go. There was an old man in the forest who can conjure up lightning. If
this mere fact doesn't infuriate you enough to seek him out and beat him up,
you haven't been taking your steroids. For preparation, equip Silver Specs on
every physical fighter and remove any Coral Sword of Trident you might have
equipped as they will heal the super-random encounter we're going to hunt down.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.17.3  The forests of Istory and the battle with Ramuh
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Mythril Dragon (#36), Black Flame (#53), Stone Golem (#54),
  Mini Dragon (#55), Ramuh (#255)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Dragon Fang (rare Mini Dragon steal)

  Summon spells:
  Ramuh

  Blue Spells:
  Dark Spark, Flash

  Pre-Ramuh smackdown odds:
  70 % Ramuh
  23 % Mini Dragon x 5
   6 % Stone Golem, Black Flame x 2

  Post-Ramuh smackdown odds:
  70 % Mythril Dragon
  23 % Mini Dragon x 5
   6 % Stone Golem, Black Flame x 2

The Mini Dragon formation is actually incredibly powerful, so even with the
preparations I'm going to give you it'd be wise to save up in advance.

Mini Dragon
Level: 22, HP: 1000, MP: 100
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 30%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Dragon Fang (rare)
Creature: Dragon
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Toad, Slow
Attacks: Attack, Frostbite

Mini Dragons can be encountered when chasing after Ramuh. They're the best
source for Gil and Experience Points in World 1, so it's no surprise they're
tough.

Mini Dragons will often simply use Battle, but have a 33 % chance of using
Frostbite every turn. It's a weak MT Ice-elemental attack without any special
properties, but coming from Mini Dragon's colossal 50 Magical Power and a
multiplier of 8 it'll leave a mark ranging from 120 (Heavy Armor characters) to
40 (Gaia Gear Magical characters). This seems bearable, but remember: there are
five potential casters every turn.

Mini Dragons have some pretty nasty defenses to overcome; while not quite as
high as Stone Golem's defenses, these guys come in groups of five and have 1000
HP, so it balances out. They aren't vulnerable to any kind of prominent status
ailment except for Toad and have no elemental weakness. A normally leveled Toad
caster will generally hit 2 or 3 out of the five Mini Dragons so keeping them
under your thumb with the Toad status isn't very easy (time-consuming mostly,
as you'll want to MT Toad on the group, than pick apart every non-transformed
dragon with Pond's Chorus or the spell). Catching one could be a good idea as
these babies cast Holy upon Release, which is damn powerful.

Again, multi-target magical attacks are the key. Aqua Breath, Thunder Rod Ramuh
(or Flame Rod Ifrit if you haven't obtained the lightning-elemental geezer yet)
and Ninja scrolls will decimate the little guys in three hits. Make sure you
get to use these skills, else you're pretty much dead already. They have a rare
Dragon Fang for Steal, but the odds are so low you'll actually score one I'm
going to assume you'll never ever get one.

Anyway, we're not here to play around. There's a random encounter in these
forests by the name of Ramuh. Fight him once and have him perform his final
speech to get him out of the way once and for all. There are ways around his
final speech (setting either Berserk or Stop on him will prevent him from using
the speech) which will make him appear after you've defeated him, but we're
going to assume you have no business doing something like that.

Ramuh
Level: 21, HP: 4000, MP: 300
Defense: 20, Magic Defense: 5
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: High Potion (always)
Win: Ramuh (always)
Absorbs: Lightning
Creature: Humanoid
Special Technique: !Rod
Special Technique Effect: Adds sap & aging
Vulnerable to: Death, Mini, Darkness, Berserk, Stop, Slow
Attacks: Battle, Thundara, Mini, Osmose, Flash, Electrocute, Lightning

Ramuh is the Lightning-elemental counterpart to Shiva and Ifrit, and the most
powerful of the three. He attacks with a barrage of Lightning-elemental spells,
and even his Battle command looks like it was performed by a Thunder Rod.
Electrocute is still very weak, but his Thundara spells hit hard; cast upon a
single target, it'll likely cripple if not kill the unfortunate target. I don't
think we've gone over Lightning before; it's basically Blaze/Breath Wing in a
Lightning-elemental jacket, meaning it deals (maximum HP / 4) damage to every
character. Flash is annoying as hell and can be learned by Blue Mages if they
haven't already from Crew Dust or a Blockhead. Silver Specs can protect your
physical sluggers; while the mages may avoid its effect due to their Magic
Evasion, those with Heavy Armor will almost surely get hit without Silver
Specs.

Note that the rare physical attack Ramuh uses is a very special one. It
provokes no Counter-attacks, nor does it dispel the Confuse, Sleep or Singing
status you should not have at the moment.

Ramuh has a few status vulnerabilities. Flash will work on him, Berserk
attempts by either the Kiss of Blessing (Maiden's Kiss + Revivify) or the
Bacchus' Wine (Revivify + Turtle Shell), and Stop by means of the Bard's
Romeo's Ballad. I'm talking about !Mix and !Sing here, neither of which you
have at the moment :/ If you have the Mini spell (if you've followed this
walkthrough you don't have it yet) then Ramuh can be shrunk, but he will
retaliate by casting the Mini spell on your entire party as well. Picking on
somebody your own size is an important combat ethos, after all.

However, the most glaring weakness Ramuh has lies in its lack of Heavy nature
and his vulnerability to the Death status. Since he's not Heavy, the Stop
status lasts a long time; and !Flirt, Gravity, Missile and Death Claw will
work; because of the latter, the Death Sickle's 33 % Death spell will kill it.
Releasing a Mani Wizard (Death) or a Corbette (Tail Screw) also works.

If you've been following the walkthrough, Death Claw is clearly your best bet,
but a combination of Slow, Stop and Gravity coming from your Time casters is
also a very effective strategy. On pure damage output, !Releasing any Mini
Dragon will result into an incredibly powerful Holy spell (around 2000 damage
in a single hit), Berserkers perform very well at this stage of the game and
!Black and !Summon spells, boosted with appropriate Rods, also get the job done
very nicely. If you haven't been drinking too much in the last couple of years,
you should remember me talking about the combination of Dark Spark and Level 5
Death; Dark Spark will reduce Ramuh's effective level from 21 to 10, turning
him into a valid target for Level 5 Death. It's a two-hit instant defeat combo
available to characters of all levels!

Ramuh: ...Ifrit? What are you doing here?

Ifrit: Lord Ramuh! I see you have become even more powerful. If you would lend
  that strength to us...

Ramuh: Ifrit! No need to say more. You and I have never been enemies!

After the fight you'll get a 'Ramuh' item. Maybe some summon beasts having an
item has a storyline purpose, but I bet it's just because the programmers
couldn't figure out how to unlock a summon beast right after a random encounter
battle on the Overworld Map. Anyway, use the item in the menu to watch it
disappear and unlock Ramuh for your Summoner.

We're done here. Let's sail to the South-East, where Crescent Island is
located. It's the crescent-shaped island. The innovation!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.18.1  The town of Crescent
**********************************

  Features:
  Piano

  Songs:
  Mighty March

The people and Jachol talked about how there was something underneath of
Crescent Island. When talking to the people here, it seems the soil is
especially fertile but strange noises well up sometimes, and there are
earthquakes. An inconveniently timed earthquake swallows up the Fire-Powered
Ship as well, stranding you on the Island. Let's look around. Some girl tells
you about the fact that rock-like creatures don't like Gold Hairpins; a
reference to Gold Needles, not the headgear!

Armor Shop:
Plumed Hat           300 Gil
Sage's Surplice     1000 Gil
 You shouldn't need to buy either, but if you find yourself lacking a frontal
lobe, this is your chance to redeem yourself.

Weapon Shop:
Flame Bow           2500 Gil
Frost Bow           2500 Gil
Thunder Bow         2500 Gil
Silver Harp          800 Gil
 Four weapons for Jobs you haven't obtained yet. You will soon, though. You'll
win an Frost Bow in a boss battle not very long from now, and there's a chance
you won a Fire Bow from Liquid Flame earlier. The Thunder Bow is the only one
of interest anyway, so if you want to utilize a possible archer-like Job, buy
that one. The Silver Harp is a horrible weapon. Rather than dealing physical
damage or even dealing physical damage depending on your Magic Power (like
Bells do), Harps simply cast a spell specially designed to be used by said
Harps. The notes coming out of the Silver Harp deal exactly 1/16 of the
target's current HP. Useless. Also requires two hands to be used.

Item Shop:
Potion                40 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Tent                 250 Gil
 I wonder how they make Maiden's Kisses. I wonder how you carry them in your
pocket. I also wonder if in the Maiden's Kisses industry of Final Fantasy V,
pretty young girls are fired for consuming a forbidden love, thus turning their
products tainted. In general, making out with a toad doesn't turn the toad into
something other than a toad, unless its one of those psychoactive toads, in
which case anything could appear to happen, from toads turning into princesses
to ATM machines demanding you feed it a stray cat.

In a house to the south-east, there's a bard living by himself. He'll teach you
the Mighty March, which sets Regen on all characters. Not all that good, but
can't hurt. He then urges you to play some tunes on his piano, but even though
you can (and should) play the piano here, it's apparently not good enough for
him to compose any new songs. The tune you play is the first March from his
three military marches, in D Major; it was originally composed by mister Franz
Peter Schubert for 4 hands (quatre-mains) and could thus only be played by two
players simultaneously.

Some dude mentions a Black Chocobo in the forest. Legend has that these
creatures are able to fly, which is a precious ability since we've lost our
freaking Fire-Powered Ship and we need to get out of this place.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.18.2  Crescent Island and the Black Chocobo
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Doublizard (#50), Bio Soldier (#51), Harvester (#52), Black Flame (#53)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Death Sickle (rare Harvester drop), War Hammer (rare Bio Soldier steal)

  Blue Spells:
  Dark Spark

  35 % Bio Soldier, Doublizard, Harvester
  35 % Harvester, Harvester, Doublizard
  30 % Harvester, Harvester, Black Flame, Black Flame

The only new enemy here is Harvester. His business in attacking you is unclear,
but he carries some neat weapons around. He has a common Silver Bow to Steal
(useless to equip now that you have access to elemental bows which are slightly
stronger, but great for selling) and will rarely drop a Death Sickle. The Death
Sickle is a great weapon. It's extremely powerful and has a 33 % chance of
casting Death which is an incredibly awesome side-effect that will even affect
some bosses. If you ever want to use one of those spiffy Berserker employees,
now's the time. Twohanded is Death Sickle's best friend, obviously.

The tiny forest to the south of Crescent? Enter the middle square and you'll
enter the forest. Here's the Black Chocobo. With Bartz, you get to catch it. If
you want to quit, you can always talk to your fellow teammates. The Black
Chocobo basically runs until it hits an object (the side, a tree, Bartz), then
randomly picks a direction it wasn't running to previously and starts running
that-a-way. Catching it isn't that hard. If Bartz was dead at this point, you
can enter the menu and see a party of one dead guy. 

It won't fly properly, though. Faris smacks two Crystal Shards out of the bird;
the two Crystal shards from the Fire Crystal we hadn't recovered yet! Finally,
the Bard gives us a way to utilize the two Songs we have learned. It's also
capable of equipping the crappy Silver Harp. The Ranger gives us a way to deal
with the Bows.

There's the Ranger and the Bard that have been added to your options. Both have
their void to fill in this game, so let's take a look:

The Ranger is another Job which is hard to classify, so I suggest you learn a
bit about what they are and how they perform. They learn !Animals after 15 ABP,
which is a great action ability for any mage to have. They're most notable for
their capstone ability !Rapid Fire, which is made of awesome.
[RANGER-LINK]

The Bard has low stats and very poor equipment options, but !Sing is really
awesome. Multi-target unblockable Stop status? Sign me up.
[BARD-LINK]

It takes only 175 ABP to learn !Sing, and it's an incredibly useful action
ability that functions almost entirely independant of stats so any Job can use
it effectively. The Ranger often struggles to match the damage output of other
physical damage classes; Barehanded provides a damage boost that puts an arrow-
happy Ranger on par with a Monk of equal level.

Now that you have the Black Chocobo, our direct mission objective is going to
the Library of the Ancients and talk to Cid 'nd Mid and complain about our lack
of modus transporti. However, first you should make sure that you've found a
Death Sickle if you have any intention of being awesome. Also, there's some
other things we can do before finding Cid 'nd Mid, and since the latter are
boring anyway, I suggest we do them first.

Note: never park the Black Chocobo in the middle of this forest, as you'll have
to catch it again :< Some like his dance upon capture, but there are also some
who use scotch as deodorant so some clearly don't know what's right and wrong
in the world.

This is an exceptional opportunity for you to revisit Castle Walse and brawl
with Jackanapes. There are two strategies you can follow. If you learned Level 5
Death at the Library of the Ancients, casting it versus Jackanapes will end the
battle in your favor by killing Jackanapes outright. If you lack Level 5 Death,
you can utilize Berserkers for a more troublesome but ultimately effective
run. Two-Handed is a big bonus, as is the Death Sickle or War Hammer. Go in with
a Berserker frontloaded with violent tendencies and a Thief to deflect Back
Attacks. Have a Time Mage cast Haste upon the Berserker(s). Wait and keep
yourself alive. After a few misses here and there, Jackanapes should be paste
on the floor. Now casually stroll around, opening chests like it's just another
day's work.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.19.1  The town of Lix
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Goblin (#1), Killer Bee (#5), Nutkin (#6), Stray Cat (#7)

  Songs:
  Alluring Air

  Surrounding forest:
  35 % Nutkin x3
  35 % Stray Cat x4
  23 % Stray Cat, Killer Bee, Nutkin
   6 % Killer Bee, Goblin

Let's go to the last town we haven't visited yet, the town of Lix. It's located
to the north-west of the Wind Shrine, is surrounded by weak monsters, forest
and mountains.

There are exactly three cutscenes centered around Bartz to be triggered here.
One is triggered when you sleep at Lix' Inn (which will cost you nothing). It
explains Bartz' history with his parents and explains why he is the adventurer
he is now. The cutscene will remove the "Memento" rare item from your inventory,
a rare item that serves no purpose. Another one is triggered when talking to the
scholar running around town, who is a childhood friend of Bartz. His fear of
heights (remember his reluctance regarding getting on the Wind Drake?) is
showcased. The most important one is located in Bartz' old house where a bard
now lives. A music box (the pink one) can be played, sinking Bartz into his
memories. After the scene concerning the death of Stella, you can talk to the
bard who'll teach you the Alluring Air, in my personal opinion the second-best
Song there is; it sets Confuse to the entire enemy pary at no MP cost.

Some claim the "Stella!!!" bit is a reference to A Streetcar named Desire.
Other sources claim the S-M-R-T smart line from Bartz' scholar friend was taken
from a Simpsons episode. Other sources still claim that the illuminati did
9-11. Believe what you will!

The other notable features here are the shops. The Item Shop is important
because due to Bartz being some kind of super-jock around these parts, the
merchant will cut his prices down by 50 %. Stock up on items if you wish, it'll
be especially useful when you want to play around with the !Mix ability in the
future.

Upstairs, there's more goodies:

Weapon Shop:
Kunai                600 Gil
Shuriken            2500 Gil
Flame Scroll         200 Gil
Thunder Scroll       200 Gil
Water Scroll         200 Gil
 Mainly just interesting due to the Scrolls that can now be bought in large
quantities. First time you get to lay your hands on Water Scrolls, too. In the
upcoming 'dungeon', most enemies will be weak to Water-elemental attacks, so
Water Scrolls are nice to have. Shuriken are great to have as well, but they're
very expensive. I'd say, buy 20 of each Scroll and two Shuriken, they'll serve
you well.

Armor Shop:
Green Beret         2500 Gil
Ninja Suit          3000 Gil
 The Armor Shop is also ninja-based, but this attire could've been purchased in
Jachol four score and five centuries ago.

Magic Shop:
Esuna               3000 Gil
 If you missed the status ailment restoration spell in the exploding castle of
Karnak, you can simply buy it here. It cures most status ailments, but not
spasms.

Item Shop:
Ether                750 Gil
Potion                40 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Tent                 250 Gil
 While most Item Shops across the world are identical, this one is different;
not only is everything only half-priced, you cannot buy Phoenix Downs here but
you CAN get Ethers. Maybe that whole Stella tragedy could have been averted,
had this loser been decent enough to offer Phoenix Downs like every other
normal Item Shop. Oh well, stock up on outdoor housing; this is the winter of
our discount Tents. That's Shakespeare humor for ya! This is a great place to
stock up on Antidotes, Eye Drops and Maiden's Kisses, all ingrediets for !Mix
later in the game. 

That's all, folks! Time to go to the Library of the Ancients. There, you'll
learn that building a new Fire-Powered Ship and searching the seas for the
Earth Crystal will have to wait for a while; King Tycoon was found in the
Desert of Shifting Sands, and if anything he should be more than able to tell
us something. If he's not being mind-controlled or something, obviously.

The upcoming boss battle features a creature with the Desert nature. It'll
cause Aqua Breath to deal 8 times as much damage. It you never learned the
spell from Dhorme Chimera, now's the time!

Get to the Desert of the Shifting Sands! Cid 'n Mid will chime the bells of
your demise. I mean, to summon the Sandworm.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.20.1  The battle with the Sandworm
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Sandworm (#256)

Sandworm
Level: 18, HP: 3000, MP: 10125
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Weakness: Water
Creature: Desert Creature, Heavy
Vulnerable to: Slow
Attacks: Battle, Gravity, Quicksand

Here's the deal. There are three Holes which Sandworm will regularly pop out.
Every time you hit a hole with a non-Magic attack, it has a 66 % counter rate
with a Gravity spell. The Sandworm in the meantime will use Battle and a move
called Quicksand. Quicksand is an Earth-elemental attack that will deal 60
damage to everybody and set the Sap status. Note that the physical attack the
Sandworm uses is like the physical attack used by Ramuh; it does not provoke
Counters, nor does it dispel status ailments such as Confuse or Sleep. Sandworm
is always considered to be in the Back Row, halving most physical damage
except for Bows, Whips, the Moonring Blade and Goblin Punch. 

MT magical attacks are the way to go. Aqua Breath deals 8 times as much damage
to Sandworm since it's a Desert creature. A normally leveled Blue caster will
take out Sandworm in a single attack. Releasing a Dhorme Chimera will deal
about 2300 damage, thoroughly crippling him (nets you counter-Gravity spells
though). Water Scrolls are very powerful, especially if the character using
!Throw has a mage's Magic Power, but they will provoke two Gravity spells as
well. Summoning Thunder Rod Ramuh deals good damage too, and doesn't evoke
counterattacks.

It's not that hard a fight. Keep Berserkers away from this fight; they'll
attack the holes most of the time. If your Death Sickle casts Death on a hole,
you'll get a chance of countering for both he physical strike and the added
spell, strangely enough.

When you're done, you've made a bridge. Excellent! *air guitar noises*

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.20.2  The Desert of Shifting Sands and Gohn, the Town of Ruin
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Bomb (#49), Doublizard (#50), Bio Soldier (#51), Dhorme Chimera (#58),
  Sandboil (#59), Desert Killer (#60), Sand Bear (#61)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Javelin (rare Sand Bear steal)

  Blue Spells:
  Aqua Breath, Self-Destruct

  Desert of the Shifting Sands:
  35 % Desert Killer, Desert Killer
  35 % Desert Killer, Sandboil, Sandboil
  23 % Sand Bear
   6 % Sand Bear, Desert Killer, Sandboil

  Grasslands between the Desert of Shifting Sands and Gohn
  35 % Bio Soldier x2
  35 % Bomb x4
  30 % Bomb x2

  Grasslands around Gohn
  35 % Bomb x2, Doublizard
  35 % Bio Soldier x2
  23 % Bomb x2
   6 % Bomb x4

  Patch of desert south of the Desert of Shifting Sands
  Always: Dhorme Chimera

Sandboil will rarely use Spore, an attack that Poisons a single target. It's a
desert-type creature like everything here and weak to the Water element

Desert Killer is undead, weak to Water-elemental attacks and a Desert creature
like logic would give us. They have the power to use Quicksand on their second
turn, but you should've disposed of them before that. They may also Flee before
you can kill them, but it's not bad.

Sand Bear is just a big lug whose Special !Right Claw can set Sap in addition
to dealing some physical damage. It's most prominent feature though is its rare
Javelin Steal. The Javelin is a Spear and the most powerful weapon you can have
at this point (even stronger than the Death Sickle). If you're a fan of the
Freelancer class, you may want to pick one up here. Sand Bear has no common
steal, so you'll get one eventually; the creature is vulnerable to every
status ailment with the exception of Mini, so Pond's Chorus will help you in
this fight greatly. Sand Bears are supremely powerful when caught, yielding a
most impressive (Strong) Attack. They'll always drop an Antidote upon defeat.

Ninja Water Scrolls are grand in this area; you could've bought them for 200
Gil a piece in Lix, and they instantly kill every random encounter here even
without you having to boost the Ninja's Magic Power. !Gaia will have a fair
chance of calling out Quicksand, which kills a target instantly. Sandstorm will
set Darkness, so it's not like that's a total waste. It is very difficult to
run from the encounters here except with !Flee or !Smoke. 

Right, Down, Down until you can't go further (you'll be moved one tile to the
left), then go left, down, there's the exit already in sight. You need to go
around a single sandstream and you're there.

You can find a Pyramid in the middle of the Desert of Shifting Sands, 'guarded'
by two omnious looking gargoyles. However, there's nothing you can do here, so
exploring the area will just get you some random encounters.

At the end of the line, you'll come across Gohn, Town of Ruin. Here, King
Tycoon will pop up every now and then, ever fleeing from your sight. You need
to 'find' him a couple of times before you can corner him.

First, you'll see him running away if you are trying to go up the stairs in
front of you as soon as you enter Gohn. Now,
there are three instances where you can see him. One is enough to proceed, but
you can go find all three if you're so inclined:

- South-east corner ruined house, to the left of the two green bushes
- North-east corner ruined house, when trying to pass through the hole in the
  wall
- To the far west is a staircase; if you approach it from the right, passing
  the thin leaveless tree

Now, try to go up the stairs in the middle of Gohn again, where King Tycoon is
waiting for you. The floor will cave in underneath you, and finally it is
revealed what we had already guesses: the pirate captain Faris Sherwiz is
actually Tycoon's long-lost heiress Sarisa Tycoon. Regardless, we need to
split. Find the transporter to move.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.21.1  Ancient Ronka Ruins under Crescent Island
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Crayclaw (#257)

  Container contents:
  Shuriken x2

  Miscellaneous items:
  Frost Bow (guaranteed Crayclaw drop)

  White Spells:
  Mini

Action sequence! Mid 'nd Cid fly the Black Chocobo to Crescent Island (no, you
dafts, not in the middle of the forest!) while you escape with your lives
intact from the broken teleporter room. When you can move again, you'll
eventually reach a door. Don't mess with it yet, but go down instead, around
the staircase.

There's a bedroom where you can rest a while (do so, there's a boss fight
coming up). Thought the left door, you can see three chests and a button.
Pushing the button won't remove the wall, though. What the hell? Buttons ALWAYS
remove walls, it's RPG tradition.

The button gives you a mission. Complete the following tasks in this order, as
indicated by every mission statement:

 Enter the bedroom and decline the option to rest up. The right-most flowerbed
 holds a new step:

 Take a look at the right-most notes on the table

 There are two urns in the left room. Examining the left one will reveal a frog
 who will stomp out a book.

 Damned lever again! Pull it to have the wall removed. Actually, you could've
 just declined the offer of Pushing the button to open up the option of Pulling
 the lever right there, but that was more fun.

The chests contain two Shuriken and the White Mini spell. This is likely your
first encounter with the Mini status; it changes the affected target's sprite,
sets Defense to 0, doubles Evasion% (but not Magic Evasion%) and physical
damage is sharply reduced. Now, go back to where you emerged on this level,
push the button to open the door (back in the forest, Cid 'nd Mid will fall
through a hole in the floor). Continue to find a Save Point, your old
Fire-Powered Ship (yes, you can enter the machine room and fight the monsters
there if you want to, possibly use your newly-learned !Control to get a Motor
Trap to cast Missile on you). Cid 'nd Mid will join you, get excited over the
ship since it has propellers and make it fly. Talk to Cid for some trouble.

Cray Claw
Level: 43, HP: 2000, MP: 500
Defense: 25, Magic Defense: 25
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Coral Sword (common)
Win: Frost Bow (always)
Absorbs: Water
Weakness: Lightning
Creature: Heavy, Magic Beast
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze,
  Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Stop, Slow
Attacks: Battle, Tailscrew, Slimer

Cray Claw is pathetic. He's got a glaring weakness to Lightning-elemental
attacks, so Thunder Scrolls, Two-Handed Thundara swords, Two-Handed Coral
Swords, Thunder Rod Ramuh and simple Thundara spells take him out in two or
three shots. He is vulnerable to the Death Sickle's random Death spell, can be
put to Sleep, can be Paralyzed by the Whip, can be Stopped by Romeo's Ballad,
Latch On and !Calm, you name it.

Note that when you don't exploit his weakness(es), it will suddenly become
painfully obvious that Crayclaw's defenses are fairly harsh for this time of
the game, so this might prove some kind of roadblock of a battle in certain
challenges. With a Guarding Knight present, Craw Claw can only hope to kill a
character with a combination of Slimer-induced Sap and Tailscrew, which is
quite a rare occurrence. At worst this is a slow battle, not a hard one.

With cheese biscuits ...and mashed potatoes?

After all's said and done, Cid 'nd Mid are geniuses and you have an airship!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.21.2  Airship Exploitation; Prototype
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Prototype (#56)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Dark Matter (guaranteed Prototype drop)

  Blue Spells:
  Flame Thrower, Missile

Now that you've got an airship, the world is your oyster! Here's a link to a
map with all towns and other features highlighted so you'll never have to 
get lost again:

http://www.cavesofnarshe.com/ff5/map.php?world=first
  
If you were to lazy to visit Jachol, Istory and Lix with the Fire-Powered Ship
or the Black Chocobo, now's the time. You're not getting any more reason to do
so than you have now. Note that there is now a shortcut to the Cave of Jachol;
land the airship on the small strip of grassland in between the mountains, and
you'll immediately find yourself near the treasures. Also, let's take a look at 
Prototype now, an enemy that's of great interest to you if you like to work 
with some of the more funky attacks. You need to have !Control to successfully 
defeat the thing without really going out of your way, though.

Prototype
Level: 23, HP: 5000, MP: 1000
Defense: 100, Magic Defense: 100
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Ether (common)
Win: Dark Matter (always)
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Petrify, Darkness, Berserk, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Missile, Flame Thrower, Mustard Bomb,
  Blaster

Prototype lives on the islands that lie between Crescent Island and the Jachol
region, on the ones with forest (among others). He's the only encounter here,
so you're bound to run into one. Prototype has 5000 HP, both Defense and Magic
Defense are 100, is Heavy, and is only vulnerable to Petrify, Darkness, Silence
and Berserk, all of which are either very hard to set or pretty worthless. He
has no elemental weaknesses to pierce those defenses either.

Why is he interesting and still defeatable? In addition to some physical
attacks, he may use Missile (cuts current HP by 75 % unless the target is
Heavy), Mustard Bomb (barrier-piercing non-elemental attack that also sets
Sap), Blaster (sets either Paralyze or Death) and Flame Thrower (an ST
Fire-elemental attack as strong as Aera). Your Blue Mage can learn both Missile
and Flame Thrower. He'll use both randomly, so just wait. Aside from his
incredible HP and defenses and level, his attacks aren't particularly lethal
(though Blaster may one-hit kill a character).

He also drops a Dark Matter every time he is defeated. The !Mix ability of a
Job you'll get in the future can use these items, otherwise very rare, to
create a Death Potion, an unblockable attack that sets Death. Since exactly 6
bosses are vulnerable to this attack and the Death Potion is far and away the
best way to exploit it, I suggest you slay at least five Prototypes (you'll get
one after a boss battle).

The key to defeat is to !Control him and have him use Self-Destruct on himself.
If, for some reason, you don't want to use !Control, you could Catch an Undead
Husk in the Ship Graveyard; upon Release, it'll cast Break, which has quite a
decent chance of turning the robot to stone, winning you the battle. Off-Guard
can put a dent in his defenses, setting him up for normal salvage; it's a bore
since 5000 HP is a lot, but it'll get the job done.

Flame Thrower on a Blue caster with a Flame Rod is the most powerful spell a
Blue caster has, and Missile is just a better Gravity spell. They're both good
additions.

He makes for a good !Catch as well, using Mega Flare to deal around 1000 damage
to all enemies on-screen. Getting one is probably more effort than it's worth,
though. If you must, you'll have to resort to fixed HP damage attacks to get
him weak enough. Get one or more Zu monsters !Released for 1250 damage for
every bird you set free. Whittle down the rest with Self-Destruct, ??? and/or
Vampire spells.

There! With Prototype, #56, slain you now have finished your Bestiary from
#1 to #61, having encountered and killed every creature so far.

Another note: With the new information regarding Lenna and Faris being siblings
and all, a new cutscene opens up at Castle Tycoon; as soon as you enter the
castle the Chancellor will once again offer you staying for the night, during
which a memory will be shared between Lenna, Faris and the player. You're not
really getting anything out of it, but it deepens character(s).

Finally, if you feel like training, a good place to do just that is one of
the many islands north of Crescent Island. You should find here only groups of
five Black Flames, all easily defeated with !Summon or Ninja Scrolls. They
cough up 870 Gil, 3 ABP and 362 Experience Points a character every time you
defeat such a group. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.22.1  The Ancient Ruins and the battle with Adamantoise
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Adamantoise (#258)

Remember Gohn, Town of Ruin, where you almost had a confrontation with King
Tycoon, south of the Desert of Shifting Sands? Fly near it (or approach the
location by foot, it's pretty much the same) and the entire town will, holy
freaking God, rise into the air. Trivia: the newly found desert houses
grassland enemies.

Let's ask Cid 'nd Mid what we should be doing now. It seems even the hidden
characters that the Ronka civilization is composed of nowadays have also
realized, at some unspecified point in the past, that the Earth Crystal is
about the shatter. Which is bad news, but logical enough. They landed the city
as to no longer burden the Earth Crystal, but it seems somebody under the
powers of Exdeath has initiated flight sequence again. We need to stop that,
but we can't reach the thing. Fortunately, the frontal lobes of Mid 'nd Cid are
active as always. There's crazy talk of Adamantite which can strengthen the
hull or whatever. Let's go find it, it's located in the Tycoon meteorite Galuf
traveled in.

When you open the Meteor, dive inside and remove the Adamantite from its
location, you've DOOMED yourself. Trying to exit will have a powerful foe
deliver woe onto thee. Stand your guard!

Adamantoise
Level: 20, HP: 2000, MP: 125
Defense: 25, Magic Defense: 5
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 50%
Steal: Iron Draft (common)
Win: Turtle Shell (always)
Weakness: Ice
Status: Protect, Shell
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Poison, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack

Adamantoise is an interesting enemy. He just attacks with a barrage of powerful
physical attacks, meaning he falls to the !Guard/Counter combo. He is
vulnerable to Ice-elemental attacks, but since he's not Heavy and not protected
from Instant Death attacks you'll want to nail him with attacks that take
advantage of that. However, note that every time a magical attack would
normally connect, it may miss versus Adamantoise due to his inherent Shell
status, which in this game does not only affect magical damage output but
actually reduces the Hit Rate of blockable magic attack by 50 %. Missile,
Gravity and Death Claw all work on the guy, but you'll have a hard time
actually hitting him with it. This also makes attacks like Flash, Poison and
Slow often miss.

Also, magical attacks that would normally cut straight through this guy's
defenses (Ice-elemental attacks) are still halved in damage, so even Frost Rod
Blizzara attacks will do around 600 damage. Two-Handed Blizzara Spellblades cut
a big gaping hole in his HP pool, though, even through Protect. If your level
is 20, Goblin Punch deals a lot of damage as well, especially coming from
Ninjas. 

Level 5 Death is Adamantoise's bane; it's unblockable and nails him in a single
shot. Basically, engage the boss with full HP on everybody, stick in the Back
Row, equip Main Gauches and Elven Mantles where possible and you should
prevail; you can't rely per se on sneaky tactics, but you should be fully
prepared to simply outmuscle the guy. Casting Protect across the board before
spending turns on offense will make absolutely sure you've got this fight
under control. If not, set !Guard on a Monk and there's no losing.

Fly back to the Catapult near Crescent Island so Cid 'nd Mid can get down and
dirty with your airship and the Adamantite you brought them. Meanwhile, you
rest up and replenish HP/MP like you should. In the morning: cannons! Bollocks.

You can now use the action button where ever you are on the Overworld Map to
either go up or down. Going up will allow you to face the flying ruins of Ronka
(why are they called ruins?). Note: the Thief's Sprint support ability can
speed up the ship. There are four small cannons here; face them to engage in a
battle.

Just for funsies, here's an example of one some focused builds you could have
at the moment, modeled after my own personal favorites:

LV 4 Knight
LV 2 Monk
LV 1 Berserker
Kills stuff dead with great weapons, Barehanded was used early on to boost
Knight damage and to give the Berserker an accurate alternative, now either
Two-Handed or Berserk is used to boost damage depending on my love for the
shield at that moment. Can change to Magic Knight in a jiffy versus bosses when
so wished.

LV 3 Blue Mage
LV 3 Red Mage
LV 2 Summoner / LV 3 Time Mage
LV 1 Geomancer
LV 1 Ranger
Magic cannon, shoots spells and healing when appropriate. Both skillsets can be
used on a Summoner or something from now on to boost damage. The Ranger is
there for !Animals, which uses Magic Power and can be used for healing and
miscellaneous effects.

LV 2 Monk
LV 2 Thief
LV 2 Ninja
LV 3 Blue Mage
LV 2 Beastmaster
Barehanded is used on Ninja, Thief and Beastmaster for extra damage, even if I
want their special weapons (Barehanded boosts Strength, thus damage). The
utility character. !Blue can be used on a Ninja to boost Scrolls and gives
Goblin Punch and Vampire.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.23.1  The cannons of the Flying Ronka Civilization
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Flame Thrower (-), Rocket Launcher (-), Soul Cannon (#259), Launcher (#260),
  Launcher (#261)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Dark Matter (guaranteed Soul Cannon drop)

  Blue pells:
  Flame Thrower, Missile

The two outer cannons each represent Formation A, the two inner cannons each
represent Formation B.

Formation A:
Flame Thrower (common)
Rocket Launcher x2 (rare)

Formation B:
Rocket Launcher x2 (common)
Flame Thrower x2 (rare)

The Flame Throwers will do nothing but use Flame Thrower, which is a Blue spell
you could've learned from Prototype earlier. You can't miss it here. The Rockets
will use either Missile or Rocket Punch. Rocket Punch is an attack that your
Blue Mage can't learn. It cuts down current HP by 50 %, but also adds the
Confuse status. Berserkers are nice against them; the Death Scythe and/or War
Hammer is powerful, and Berserkers are inherently immune to the Confuse status.
Knights with Berserk set can wield Coral Swords, which is also great as it
targets their elemental weakness. The Flame Thrower will always drop some Speed
Shakes; the Rocket Launchers will drop Iron Drafts. Both are consumables you
cannot use at this moment.

Deal with all of the them with Lightning-elemental attacks. Lightning Scrolls
(especially boosted by a magical skillset), and Thunder Rod Ramuh are the best
damage dealers as they are MT and don't suffer from MT penalties (like an MT
Thundara spell would), but Thundara and Coral Swords work just as fine, only a
little less fast. Two Ninjas with boosted Magic Power will take out these
weapons with Lightning Scrolls before the cannons can even move. Obviously, if
you have any Flame Rings you can absorb Flame Thrower, but it's one of the few
benefits of buying a Flame Ring, otherwise a fairly crappy decision at this
point.

When you're done, the Master Cannon comes out. Crap. You can engage in a fight
with it when you examine it. I strongly suggest you heal up entirely before
this fight and install one or more characters with the ability to cast up to
level 4 White spells. If this requires White Mages, so be it. Dealing
Lightning- elemental damage, and a lot of it, is basically what the coming
fight is about, so Two-Handed Mystic Knights, Thunder Rod Summoners and
combining !Throw with a mage's Magic Power are all very good to have. Level 5
Death is also a great benefit in the upcoming battle. !Gaia is useless, Wind
Slash will appear often and will do nothing since Soul Cannon doesn't take
damage from Wind-elemental attacks.

"Diffusion Beam Cannon: Online!"
"Laser Crosshair Brightness: 20!"
"Safety Lock: Offline!"
"Barrel Pressure Rising!"
"Blast Shielding Activated!"
"Energy Cells 128 % Capacity"
"Firing!"

Wave Cannon.

Soul Cannon
Level: 36, HP: 22500 (effectively), MP: 1000
Defense: 5, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Potion (common)
Win: Phoenix Down (common)
Nullifies: Water, Wind, Poison
Weakness: Lightning
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Slow
Attacks: Wave Cannon

Wave Cannon is a nasty attack. It deals maximum HP/2 damage to all characters
and sets the Sap status too. If you don't heal between Wave Cannon attacks,
you will die the next time. Soul Cannon itself will give a message every turn
and will eventually use Wave Cannon right after "Firing!", as detailed above.
After it's initial warming routine, it'll only take three turns to get ready
for another Wave Cannon attack:

"Diffusion Beam Cannon: Online!"
"Barrel Pressure Rising!"
"Energy Cells 128 % Capacity"
"Firing!"

Soul Cannon has two unnamed smaller cannons on its back, both with an effective
HP ratio of 800. I'm saying effective in all cases as neither the Launchers nor
Soul Cannon itself will live to see the full extent of its potential; when
reaching a certain HP ratio, they will self-terminate with an explosion.

The Launchers will attack with an unnamed attack called Valiant Attack which is
a missile set to destroy half your current HP, also setting the Old status.
It's really kinda nasty and will probably get you twice before you can take
them out. You can take them down in what probably will be two MT Lightning-
elemental attacks or the Blue Level 5 Death spell. Whatever, !Release a
Prototype for Mega Flare, see if I care. Make absolutely sure to take them out
first. Now, it's time to face Soul Cannon.

It's basically just a race against time, that's what this is. Which is why Slow
is such an asset in this battle. Characters being able to combine a Thunder Rod
and/or a mage's Magic Power with the !Throw ability are the best damage
dealers, so set either a spelllist on a Ninja or !Throw on a pure caster. Two-
Handed Mystic Knights with a Thundara Spellblade are very strong as well. Set
!Spellblade 1 to a Ninja, cast Thunder on both Knives and watch the damage fly.
A good combination is a Time Mage with either level 3 Black or level 2 !Summon
(!Summon is better). Slow and Haste can prove very useful, and Thunder Rod
spells hurt pretty bad as well. If you're having trouble still, !Catch a few
Sand Bears and unleash them for 2200 damage a hit, or buy a few Thunder Rods
and break them in this battle for similair damage.

You'll probably take a single Wave Cannon to the face even if you're decent on
the preparation, which isn't too bad. if you choose your Job and ability
combinations poorly, you might find yourself taking more, which is. The
combination of steadily decreasing HP, characters whose stats have dropped
dramatically with the Old status (even a short while in the status takes a
toll on the Old characters) can prove an effective strategy for the opponent
if you don't have the pure power of survival.

In a lot of challenges, this is a tremendous roadblock of a battle since damage
won't be high enough for you to take out Soul Cannon before you take quite a
few Wave Cannon attacks to the face. A lot of Elixirs have been spent across
the world in this battle, count on it. In a normal game though, it doesn't
matter what your history on Job usage is, four Ninjas with sufficient Lightning
scrolls will win you the battle easily.

After the fight, you'll get two High Potions (from the Launchers) and a Dark
Matter, one of the three !Mix items you won't be able to utilize yet.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.23.2  The Flying Ronka Ruins
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Ra Mage (#62), Ronkan Knight (#63), Stone Mask (#64), Enchanted Fan (#65),
  Lamia (#66), Archaotoad (#67), Hydra (#68), Ghidra (#69), Archeoaevis (#262)

  Container contents:
  5000 Gil, Ancient Sword, Cottage, Elixir, Ether, Golden Armor, Golden Shield,
  Moonring Blade, Power Ring, Shuriken

  Miscellaneous items:
  Dark Bow (rare Enchanted Fan drop), Lamia's Tiara (rare Lamia steal), Dragon
  Fang (rare Hydra drop), Killer Bow (rare Ghidra steal)

  Blue Spells:
  Flash, Aera, White Wind, 1000 Needles, Pond's Chorus, Level 4 Graviga

  First floor:
  35 % Ra Mage, Ronkan Knight
  35 % Ronkan Knight, Ronkan Knight, Ronkan Knight
  23 % Ra Mage, Stone Mask, Ra Mage, Stone Mask, Stone Mask
   6 % Ronkan Knight, Ronkan Knight, Stone Mask, Stone Mask

  Second floor:
  35 % Ra Mage, Stone Mask, Ra Mage, Stone Mask, Stone Mask
  35 % Ronkan Knight, Ronkan Knight, Stone Mask, Stone Mask
  23 % Enchanted Fan
   6 % Enchanted Fan, Enchanted Fan

  Third floor:
  35 % Enchanted Fan
  35 % Enchanted Fan, Enchanted Fan
  23 % Enchanted Fan, Ronkan Knight, Ronkan Knight
   6 % Lamia

  Fourth floor:
  35 % Enchanted Fan, Ronkan Knight, Ronkan Knight
  35 % Lamia
  23 % Lamia, Stone Mask, Stone Mask, Stone Mask
   6 % Archeotoad, Archeotoad, Archeotoad

  Fourth floor (with button opening path to Archeoaevis room):
  35 % Archeotoad, Enchanted Fan, Lamia
  35 % Hydra
  23 % Hydra, Ra Mage, Ronkan Knight
   6 % Ghidra

  Fifth floor (all but Archeoaevis room):
  35 % Lamia, Stone Mask, Stone Mask, Stone Mask
  35 % Archeotoad, Archeotoad, Archeotoad
  23 % Archeotoad, Enchanted Fan, Lamia
   6 % Hydra

  Fifth floor (Archeoaevis room):
  35 % Hydra, Ra Mage, Ronkan Knight
  35 % Ghidra
  23 % Ra Mage, Ronkan Knight
   6  % Ronkan Knight x 3

It's one of those typical break-point dungeons! There is nice and elusive
equipment, some of the Blue spells are very nice (especially White Wind... White
Wind, I love you) and the monsters are tougher than anything you've seen so
far. As for strategies, it's nice to have the following. You can Steal two nice
items, though they are a rare steal. !Gaia will often use either Wind Slash or
Sonic Boom, both of which are very useful. Wind Slash especially has great
offensive capacities versus everything but the Enchanted Fans and the Ghidra
enemies. !Animals will have a decent (40 %-ish) percent of summoning a
Nightingale which heals a decent amount for no MP cost. The other results are
also helpful. Having a character summoning Animals all the time will pretty
much take care of the defensive aspect of the dungeon.

Ra Mages cast level 2 elemental spells: Fira, Blizzara and Thundara, always on
the entire party. You can set Silence, and they're quickly disposed off with
physical attacks. They may rarely drop an Elixir, though their common Steal
Sage's Surplice is less than stellar.

Ronkan Knight are meatshields and fairly proficient at it as well. They'll
often survive a single shot of even your most powerful attacks and while they
don't cast any lethal spells their physical attacks, especially !Sling, hurt
when absorbed in succession. A common Hi-Potion Steal is worth a shot, they're
pretty good at this point of the game. They're vulnerable to Mini, which
completely shuts them down; in addition, they have 20% Evasion but cannot evade
Aerial attacks so Whips and Bows will never miss.

Stone Masks attack physically only and will never use Flash normally, unlike
their Headstone counterparts. They'll be able to cast the spell when Controlled
though, so if you still haven't learned the attack this is another opportunity.

Enchanted Fan is a feast for your party. They're annoying to fight due to the
fact they absorb what's pretty much your best attack at this point - !Gaia's
Wind Slash - but they make up for it in resource potential. First off, they
randomly drop Dark Bows, which are stronger Bows for your Rangers which sets
Darkness 2/3 of the time when possible. Second, they'll often use Aera, so if
you didn't pick up the Blue spell from either Page 32 OR Gigas, here's where
you can hardly avoid it. Lastly but most importantly, Enchanted Fans wield the
mighty White Wind, a healing spell for your Blue Mage which heals the entire
party for the amount of the caster's current HP. You'll need to Confuse or
Control them to have them cast it on your Learning character(s), but since
it's one of the most useful Blue spells in this game, it's worth it. If you
miss it here, it'll be a really long time before you get to learn it again,
so make sure to grab it here.

When attacking with a Dark Bow, the screen will flash every time, as it would
had you scored a Critical Hit. No CH was scored, though; it's all part of the
Dark Bow's weapon animation. The screen will flash regardless of the Dark Bow
setting Darkness (66%) or not (33%).

   iOS/Android: The Dark Bow seems to be a lot less effective. I can't explain 
   the numbers behind it since I don't know those numbers. 

Lamia also has two fabulous prizes for you, though both are harder to obtain.
There's the Blue spell 1000 Needles, which causes 1000 HP damage regardless
of the target's defensive properties. However, since it's an offensive spell
there's only one way to learn it; by means of the Beastmaster's !Control.
Have the Controller force the Lamia to cast 1000 Needles on your Learning
character, revive him/her and you're good to go.

The second one is an awesome piece of headgear: the Lamia's Tiara. It's got 1
more Defense than the Plumed Hat, 5 more Magic Defense, 5 more Magic Evasion
and raises the character's Magic Power by 3. It also boosts the success rate
of Sword Dance coming out of the !Dance ability, but since you have no access
to it yet it shouldn't matter at this point. It's but a rare Steal though, and
if you take a moment to think back to the horror of obtaining Gaia Gear and/or
the Javelin, this'll be just like it. Lamia, on the offense, will try to use
Entice on your male characters (she'll see through Faris' deceptive clothing
and never target her) to set Confuse and may !Slap a person as well, which
sets Paralyze.

   iOS/Android: Lamia won't discriminate between characters with Entice and 
   may target both men and womenfolk. 

Quick note on 1000 Needles; not even regarding the fact that 1000 damage is
quite decent at these levels, the spell will ALWAYS work. This means that it's
a great way of damaging those pesky unkillables; Skull Eaters, Prototypes,
Jackanapes, you name it.

Archeotoad is pretty much an Elf Toad on steroids. Weak to Ice-elemental
attacks like other lizards. It'll randomly use Pond's Chorus, so you can learn
it if you haven't earlier; just make sure you've got some Maiden's Kisses lying
around. An unassuming enemy.

Hydra is the light-greenish multi-headed dragon. It's more or less Lightning-
elemental; it absorbs the element and may use Lightning every even turn.
Remember Lightning, the max HP/4-damage dealer much like Blaze and Breath Wing?
Hydra's are remarkably sturdy but pose little threat overall as their attacks
aren't all too powerful. They can drop a rare Dragon Fang, but for you sanity's
sake, don't try to farm here. Level 5 Death works nicely to take them out in a
single shot.

I'm going to tackle Ghidra in a special way, because there are so many things
notable about it. It's a very strong monster that holds treasure.

Ghidra
Level: 26, HP: 3000, MP: 1000
Defense: 20, Magic Defense: 5
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Killer Bow (rare)
Win: Phoenix Down (always)
Absorbs: Ice, Lightning, Poison, Earth, Wind, Water
Status: Reflect (always)
Creature: Dragon, Undead
Special Technique: !Rush
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Darkness, Old, Paralyze, Berserk, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Rush, Poison Breath, Lightning, Level 4 Graviga

- Ghidra absorbs all elements except for Fire and Holy. In addition, it is
  inherently Reflective. Damaging a Ghidra calls for physical attacks, Flame
  Thrower or 1000 Needles. Be careful with weapons that cast random spells
  (Mage Masher, Blitz Whip, Ancient Sword and most importantly the Death
  Sickle) as those spells will be Reflected onto your party. Also note that a
  Ghidra CANNOT be Controlled. The Ghidra is Undead, so you can use Hi-Potions
  to damage it. This dragon is the worst nuisance on the beach!
- Ghidra will use physical attacks, Lightning and Poison Breath, an MT Poison-
  elemental attack that may set the status ailment. Its power is more or less
  random as it can deliver between 10 and 100 % of its full potential.
- When a Ghidra dies, it'll cast Level 4 Graviga, a Blue spell which reduces
  the current HP of every struck target by 75 %. However, it'll only hit
  targets whose level is divisible by 4, so if your Blue Mage wants to learn
  the attack it better have an appropriate level. The Ghidra will not use the
  attack if it is Paralyzed or Berserked when it dies.
- You can Steal a rare Killer Bow from Ghidra; it's an even better bow than the
  Dark Bow which has an 8 % chance of flat-out killing the target. Good luck on
  that one.
- The Ghidra is vulnerable to Paralyze, so a Whip or the Remora spell can halt
  it while you're pounding on it. Make sure to keep track of its HP though,
  since if you want to learn Level 4 Graviga the Ghidra shouldn't be Paralyzed
  upon defeat. Darkness also works. Since it's not Heavy, you could try to use
  a Phoenix Down or Elixir to either kill or cripple it; an Elixir used on an
  Undead target will have a similar effect to Death Claw, but without the
  Paralyze. Also note that when the Phoenix Down is turned into an attack, it
  will suddenly become blockable; Ghidra may resist its effects, but never
  those of the Elixir. Missile is a great way of damaging the Ghidra; Gravity
  will bounce off Reflect, so don't try it.
- The Ghidra is difficult to deal with. Approach with caution.

If you manage to learn Level 4 Graviga, note that it works on Ronkan Knight,
Enchanted Fans, Lamias as well as Stone Masks. Level 4 Graviga deals (75% of
the target's current HP) to those non-Heavy targets with a level divisible by 4.
Sweet! If the target's level if divisible by 4 but also Heavy, the attack
animation will play out but the target will receive 0 damage.

Pass through the first room. On the second level, there are invisible stepping
tiles. They're entirely logical as you can see where they start (where the
grassy bits aren't there), but you can use the Thief's Passage ability to
actually see them. There's also a chest containing a Golden Armor. Finally, we
can get our Heavy Armor characters in actual Heavy Armor again!

On the third level there's a chest you can reach only by some less-than-logical
stepping tiles. It contains an Elixir; I kinda recommend the Passages ability
here. Cross to the other side of the room to see three exits here. Ignore the
first you could've accessed, we'll take that one last. The one leading into the
middle of a wall takes you to a Save Point. Go to the far right (chest with
Phoenix Down on the way!) which takes you to a chest with a Golden Shield.
Equip it if you can (30 % Evasion, it's almost as good as an Elven Mantle now!).
Get back to the split. The remaining one is the one to take.

The path takes you quite easily to a new chest containing a Hi-Potion in the
end. Another split now; there's a door and a stairway. The stairway takes you
to treasure! The treasure room has trap holes in it:

   x
  x x
 x   x
   oo

x = chest
o = hole

The chests contain from left to right 2000 Gil, a Shuriken, an Ancient Sword,
another Moonring Blade and a Power Ring. The Ancient Sword has a 33 % chance of
casting Old (sets the ailment) while the Power Ring simply raises Strength by
3. It's not really that noticeable (maybe a damage increase of 10 %) but it has
superior Defense to your current Armlets.

Get back and go through the door. It's all straight-forward for a while until
- confound it all - another split, at Level Five. The stairs go to a Save Point,
where you can use a Tent and Save up.

Note that here on Level Five, where the random encounters roam, you have your
shot at finding a Ghidra. The odds are a mere 6%, though. Exclusive to the
GBA game is a trick that you can use. When you Quicksave and then reload the
game, you'll have secured the pattern of random encounters for the next few
turns. The first battle here will contain the semi-rare 23% formation, the
second will feature the ultra-rare 6% formation. This way, you can be sure to
fight Ghidra every other turn if you're so inclined, by Quicksaving after every
Ghidra. This trick holds true in every situation, but since this is the first
time you have any business actually seeking out the rarest encounter, I wanted
to talk about it here.

Anyway, there's another split. The stairs take you to two chests, one
containing an Ether and one containing a Cottage (a superior version of the
Tent that simply refills HP and MP back to full rather than heal 1000 HP and
100 MP).

Now, trace back and get into the only other lead you have, which'll take you to
King Tycoon and some monster. A winged snake-monster. That don't go together at
all in real life!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.23.3  The battle with Archeoaevis
**********************************

Didn't really think this one through, really. So King Tycoon gives you an order
and you readily comply; however, being a guardian of the Earth Crystal isn't
Archeoaevis an ultimately positive force to you? Oh well, logic was never your
strong suit. How's killing monsters with BELLS going for you lately?

Archeoaevis
Level: varies, HP: 8900 or more, MP: up to 10000
Defense: (varies), Magic Defense: (varies)
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Win: Hero Cocktail (always)
Absorbs: varies, Weakness: varies
Status: Float
Creature: Heavy or Nothing (varies)
Special Technique: varies: effects vary
Special Technique Effect: effects vary
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Slow
Can't Evade: Aerial
Attacks: Battle, !Sap, !Wing Attack, !Tail, !Claw, !Tusk, Breath Wing, Frost,
  Blaze, Lightning, Maelstrom, Entangle

Archeoaevis is a monster that switches elemental properties. The only way FF V
is capable of performing this feat is by switching monsters altogether. You
won't see it happen, but let me assure you you've killed five monster by the
time you've given Archeoaevis his face full of damage. Every subsequent
incarnation has lower Defense but higher Magic Defense than the previous form.
Archeoaevis changes forms in this order:

     To change: Absorbs:        Weak:   Special T.:     Magical attack used:
1st: 1600 HP    None            Wind    Sap             Breath Wing
2nd: 1600 HP    Ice             None    Poison          Frost
3rd: 1600 HP    Fire            None    Darkness        Blaze
4th: 1600 HP    Lightning       None    Paralyze        Lightning
5th: 2500 HP    None            None    Confuse         Breath Wing, Frost,
                                                        Blaze, Lightning,
                                                        Maelstrom, Entangle
!Sap: Sets Sap
!Wing Attack: Sets Poison
!Tail: Sets Darkness
!Claw: Sets Paralyze
!Tusk: Sets Confuse

To simplify a little, you'll have to deal at least 8900 HP damage before you've
destroyed the serpent altogether. And you'll find that Archeoaevis is a
difficult bastard to hurt...

First off, Archeoaevis has quite a lot of Defense and Magic Defense. You can
keep track of its HP and know at all moments which elements aren't absorbed. By
always boosting the spell cast, Summoners and Black Mages can deal around 800
HP damage with -ra spells and elemental summons. Since the first form is weak
to Wind-elemental attacks, Aera can be used for some decent damage, as can the
!Gaia ability when it conjurs Wind Slash. After it loses its elemental edge, it
becomes worthless.

When the first four Archeoaevis' have been destroyed, the creature will appear
to die, but revive in an instant. This is the final version; Defense is
actually mediocre as opposed to high in this form, but Magic Defense is soaring
so lay off any spells. This thing croaks after 2500 HP. He can use all four of
the elemental MT spells the previous forms could use, but adds Maelstrom to the
list. Maelstrom is an attack that reduces the target's HP to a single digit,
much like Tail Screw. The problem is that it's MT. Be sure to heal up ASAP from
Maelstrom. Entangle is annoying but not all that dangerous. !Fang sets Confuse,
which is a nuisance. The final form is vulnerable to Level 5 Death, so if your
Blue Mages are sick of 1000 Needles, this spell will get the job done nicely.

The big damage dealers are Released monsters (Ronkan Knights attack for over
1500 damage, Mini Dragons cast Holy for about 2000 damage, Sand Bears inflict
2200 HP worth of pain), but these can only be used once and I'm not assuming
you've got four powerful monsters stored just for the occasion. Another option
that depletes your resources is Throwing Shuriken; they're more powerful than
1000 Needles, and this fight really is the best fight to use them in. Speaking
of the attack, 1000 Needles is a great way of dealing damage as well. You'll be
hard-pressed to reach this number with most other skillsets, it's unblockable
and is never absorbed. Still another good way to cause damage to all forms of
the ArcheoAevis is the Water Scroll, since it will never be absorbed. 

The most useful tip I can give you, though, is the Berserker. Barrier-piercing
properties, anyone? Normally, he'll deal anywhere between 300 and 800 damage
with the Death Scythe and between 200 and 600 damage with the Ogre Killer. You
can double that with the obvious Two-Handed support ability; were you
considering anything else on a Berserker anyway? Support a Berserker with a
Death Scythe held with both hands with a Haste spell and it'll be able to take
down Archeoaevis by itself. A thing of beauty, say true. For variety's sake,
the first form can be struck with a Dark Spark to set its level to 10 so that
Level 5 Death will work, but it'll just cause the second form of Archeoaevis to
appear like normal.

If you're able to let your party revolve around the aforementioned Berserkers,
install one or two Cura (preferably also Esuna) casters and you're set. Heal up
Darkness should it hit your Berserker(s). Slow isn't all that useful as it's
dispelled every time you 'kill' an Archeoaevis, so just keep focused on healing
your main offense. Clothes characters are best off throwing Water Scrolls;
Archeoaevis will never absorb Water-elemental attacks and their physical
attacks are useless anyway. Should your Clothes characters be able to use
!Blue, 1000 Needles is by far the best attack option. The same goes for Mages;
next to healing, 1000 Needles is the strongest attack you can use. If the spell
isn't learned, -ra spells when you know they won't be absorbed help out. Any
Heavy Armor character that misses both Two-Handed AND a Death Scythe or Ogre
Killer should bow his head in shame and revert to the Knight for damage output.
It'll suck.

A gimmick strategy consists out of taking advantage of unintended behavior
of counter-attacking. Archeoaevis will not counter Counter-attacks, and thus
will not call its next from when killed by a Counter-attack. Four Monks with,
say, !Blue will be able to keep themselves healed with White Wind and wait
while Archeoaevis provokes counters with its physical attacks. When the final
blow is dealt, Archeoaevis will fall immediately after 1600 HP. You can start
this strategy on all of his four appearances to to prevent the subsequent forms.
All forms will appear in the Bestiary regardless of their appearance.

For you troubles, you obtain no item worthy of mentioning; a Hero Cocktail
normally, but a Goliath Tonic (1st form), Power Drink (2nd form), Speed Shake
(3rd form) or Iron Draft (4th form) if you went with the counter route described
above.

   iOS/Android: You'll gain all five potions at the end of the fight. 

King Tycoon heads off, cackling maniacally. This whole part of the game
is more predictable than a Friends episode. With the notable exception
obviously of that one time Ross slept with Rachel. I mean, oh my god.

Know that once you've followed King Tycoon into yonder room, you won't be able
to come back to a LOT of places for a long time with all four characters, some
of them permanently. If you have any business left in this world, I suggest you
attend to it now; take a quick peek at section 4.25.1 for more information.

The cutscene is long and disastrous. To recap: Like we could have expected,
King Tycoon has been under Exdeath's control ever since he disappeared from
the Wind Shrine at the very start of our quest. He has likely been used as a
vessel for Exdeath to seek out information about the one remaining, hidden
Earth Crystal. Before Exdeath manages to kill you using Alexander Tycoon's
body, a young girl enters the scene. Krile, granddaughter to Galuf, enters the
flying ruins of Ronka using a meteorite. And even though her infantile
spellcasting has released Exdeath's hold over Alex, the Earth Crystal still
shatters. Bollocks.

Exdeath, after its imprisonment of 30 years comes, zaps you a couple of times
to demonstrate its power. It then leaves for its mission; return to Galuf's
world which it left 30 years ago and take control over it. The Crystal shards
remain under the evil influence of the dark mage. Alex sacrifices himself to
save the shards and eventually bestow upon you the all-but final Jobs of the
game. Then, the Ronka ruins crumble, having lost their power source.

Escape is of the essence.

The new Crystal shards contain Dragoon, Samurai, Chemist and Dancer. For more
information, check up on their listing in the Job section:

[DRAGOON-LINK] [SAMURAI-LINK]

[CHEMIST-LINK] [DANCER-LINK]

The Dragoon uses Lances, weapons that cannot be wielded with two hands (an
oddity, if you ask me), but can do double damage with the !Jump ability,
inherent to the Dragoon. It has the oddity of being the only meatshield Class
that removes itself from the battlefield to attack, making it a rather poor
damage sponge. However, it has its own build-in double-damage feature, so
you're free to put !Blue or something on there. The most powerful weapon you
have at the moment is the Javelin, and the Dragoon is the only Job capable of
using it. Javelin Dragoons using Jump deal tremendous damage, but you should
really halve the perceived damage since the Dragoon wastes a turn setting it up.
At reasonable levels, a Ninja with Barehanded and two good blades deals more
damage per turn, but the Dragoon is still extremely capable and is better
equipped to deal with high-Defense enemies since the damage is done in one
single blow rather than four lesser ones, as is the case with the Ninja.

The Samurai right now equips Katanas, which is awesome. Katanas inflict
critical hits like Barehanded punches sometimes do; the downside of Katanas
over Swords is that !Spellblade cannot affect them. The Samurai's !Zeninage
ability costs money, but deals sickening amounts of non-elemental and purely
level-based damage. But it costs money, at a rate of:

50 * !Zeninage user's level * (# of targets attacked)

The Chemist is an odd utility Job that cannot equip Rods and has trouble
dealing damage; after 60 ABP it'll learn the !Mix ability, which grants you
access to all kinds of powerful attacks, buffs, debuffs and other game-breaking
techniques that break the game. !Mix is the best skillset ever. At the very 
least it gives you the ability to power up Phoenix Downs into Resurrection
potions, which revive a fallen ally with full HP and MP. You can use the Blue
spell Transfusion to restore a caster's MP back to full, then use a Resurrection
potion to heal the Transfusion caster back to full HP and MP. You'll never have
MP issues again!

The Chemist itself gets double mileage out of Potions, Hi-Potions and Ethers, 
presumably because the Chemist is the only Job that understand you need to put 
them in your mouth. Since the Chemist can double its maximum and current HP 
with the Goliath Tonic, !Blue is a good action ability since ???, White Wind 
and Self-Destruct use HP to calculate effect.

The Dancer has poor stats, and !Dance is random. Its most notable features
includes a 25% or 50% chance of performing Sword Dance, which is a basic
physical attack at 400% its normal power. Tthe Dancer can equip the Ribbon to 
compensate for its poor stats, and the Lamia's Tiara increases the chances of 
!Dance its most powerful outcome, Sword Dance, from 25% to 50%, but it's either
the Tiara or the Ribbon so choose wisely.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.24.1  Karnak Meteorite; the fight with Titan
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Titan (#264)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Gaia Hammer (rare Titan steal)

  Summon spells:
  Titan

While the girls mourn over their deceased father, Galuf decides to return to
his world. A three-man party is left behind to find a purpose in a dying world.
It takes but one quick land anywhere on the Overworld Map to convince the trio
to disregard Galuf's words.

Now that the former King of Tycoon, Alexander Tycoon has died, a new cutscene
has opened up at Castle Tycoon. Entering the castle will have the chancellor
ask you if you want to spend the night again; in the night, there's character
development and all that jazz.

Cid 'nd Mid should know what to do. Traveling over to the Catapult will inform
you of the fact they're traveled to Tycoon Meteorite to return the Adamantite
to its former place. Or, you could just travel to Tycoon Meteorite right away,
they'll be there even if you don't read the letter they've left behind.

A new mission presents itself, courtesy of Cid 'nd Mid: travel to the
meteorites of Walse (the one the golden warrior traveled in), Karnak (the
werewolf) and the one which crash-landed near the ruined city of Gohn (Krile's
meteorite) and let Cid 'nd Mid work their mojo.

All three meteorites hold their own kind of trouble, so be sure to prepare. The
next order is kinda important to follow, so listen well. The monster we'll face
to obtain the power of Karnak's meteorite knows a powerful Earth-elemental
attack we can protect ourselves against by allowing ourselves to Float. And how
would we go about doing that? There are two options. Confuse a Gaelicat and it
might cast Float on your party. Control one and make sure it does :) Also, if
you have played around with your new Chemist enough to have gained the !Mix
ability, Mix an Antidote and Maiden's Kiss to create Levisalve, which sets Float
on a single character.

Now, travel to Karnak Meteorite.

Gadzooks! It turns out this meteorite has been swarmed by monsters! Yoink! Up
to us to clear out the fallen wishing star. Inside is the nest of the summoned
monster, which is the reason I brought you here in the first place. Make sure
to Save on the Overworld Map, and bring a Thief.

Titan
Level: 1, HP: 2500, MP: 2000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Gaia Hammer (rare), Potion (common)
Win: Hi-Potion (common)
Absorbs: Earth
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical Attack
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Paralyze, Stop, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack, Earth Shaker

Titan is a muscle-head, obviously. Physical attacks aren't your main concern,
and while Earth Shaker can deal around 500 damage to all characters, you should
have been able to circumvent all this drama with Gaelicats or Levisalve. A Time
Mage on your side really helps you out by setting Slow and Stop on Titan,
though Stop won't last long.

Nothing is super effective against Titan. 1000 Needles is probably your most
powerful attack; three thousand needles and Titan is dust. Setting !Black 1
or !Blue or something to a Ninja throw a Scroll is also most powerful. Magical
attacks deal more damage than physical attacks, but Stamina helps to survive
Earth Shaker attacks when you're earthbound. This is a great moment to !Release
something most bodacious, like a Sand Bear or Mini Dragon. Chopping the giant's
head off with a Berserker's Death Sickle is, as always, a solid strategy as
well; Berserks have HP to spare, which is another plus.

Remember the Berserker with the Death Scythe? Titan's Gaia Hammer is even MORE
powerful. It has 15 more Battle Power (30 with Two-Handed), deals the same
amount of damage from the Back Row (even though it doesn't say so) and has a
25% chance of using a Earthquake attack, which is an MT Earth-elemental attack.
Coming from the Berserker's Magic Power (which should be around the
neighborhood of 1) it'll deal around 500 damage to all; this could potentially
be doubled for a character with a Mage's Magic Power. A Berserker helped out by
!Summon... what will they think of next? Note that the Gaia Hammer boosts
Earth-elemental attacks by 50 %.

An important note to make is that you shouldn't shoot for the Gaia Hammer
unless you'd like to explore the options it brings. Since Titan has a common
steal as well, there's only a 5/128 chance (more or less 3,9%) that a Steal
attempt that brings you an item will bring you a Gaia Hammer. Even with an
emulator's Quick Save feature, that's a lot of reloads on average. You'll get
a Gaia Hammer no problem later in the game.

Titan's Gaia's Wrath attack, in the meantime, deals a LOT of Earth-elemental
damage to everything that's not Floating. Gaia Gear you may have equipped and
the Gaia Hammer which you are VERY unlikely to have equipped on a Summoner both
boost its power by 50 %, making it a tremendous force surpassing every other
alternative.

Next meteorite: Walse?

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.24.2  Walse Meteorite; the fight with the Purobolos
**********************************

  Opponents: Purobolos (#263)

  Blue spells:
  Self-Destruct

All seems well until Purobolos descend from the heavens. The name of the beasty
remains a mystery; could be spanish for 'pure borons', with boron being a
chemistry element. More like 'pure MORONS', amirite. I like to think it stands
for 'pure bollocks', a post-modern auto-reference of significance. And ridicule.

Purobolos
Level: 22, HP: 1500, MP: 100
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Eye Drops (rare), Potion (common)
Win: Potion (rare)
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Berserk, Silence,
  Stop, Slow
Attacks: Battle, Arise, Cura, Self-Destruct

A decently leveled Summoner with Gaia Gear wielding Titan's power can take out
all six Purobolos in a single hit. I'm not counting on you having that, though.
Purobolos' can be very, very annoying. Every time one is killed, it revives all
deceased comrades with full HP. With 1500 HP and the ability to cast Self-
Destruct every single turn, you'll want to deal with them very quickly. So,
there's basically two approaches:

The Silence status prevents a Purobolos from casting Arise when dying. It is,
however, very difficult to set the ailment and deal sufficient damage at the
same time. It's a shame the Mute spell has no effect in this battle.

The best way to deal with the Purobolos is by dealing damage to all targets.
Clothes characters can throw Scrolls, which are even better when a spell-list
is set to the character to boost its Magic Power. Gaia's Wrath deals around
1100 damage (1700 when boosted), but beware; every Summoned monster attack
makes a Purobolos cast Cura on itself, healing for about 200 HP. Aqua Breath
deals around 800 damage as well. THE way to kill all Purobolos in a single hit
if you're sick of them is the Samurai's !Zeninage; a level 25 character deals
over 5000 damage to all targets. It'll cost you about 7500 Gil though, and it's
really not necessary. I'd go with a Scroll followed up with Gaia's Wrath or
something like that, works like a charm and doesn't cost you nothing except for
a single Scroll.

There is an oddity with the Gaia Hammer in this battle; only the Purobolos that
is hit with the weapon will cast Arise upon death; if the MT magical Quake
triggers, the other Purobolos will not counter, meaning no Arise. Bugged, but
it could prove handy.

I wonder where Cid 'nd Mid have Gohn? OMG pun intended. It's below the Desert
of Streaming Sands, remember?

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.24.3  Gohn Meteorite; the fight with the Manticore
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Manticore (#265)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Dragon Fang (common Manticore steal), Wind Spear (rare Manticore steal)

  Blue spells:
  Aqua Breath

Cid 'nd Mid are taking an awfully long time. Turns out there's a monster
involved. Who'da thunk it?

Manticore
Level: 19, HP: 3300, MP: 1000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Wind Spear (rare), Dragon Fang (common)
Win: Phoenix Down (always)
Absorbs: Ice
Creature: Magic Beast
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Silence, Stop,
  Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack, Aqua Breath, Frost

The Manticore isn't all that tough; physical attacks combined with Aqua Breath
(300 damage to all) and Frost (250 to all, but adds Sap) isn't too bad, but
know that these attacks can kill those with few Hit Points in two hits. The
best way of dealing with the Manticore is exploiting its lack of Heavy nature
and status vulnerabilities. The Dancer's !Flirt ability can cripple the
creature easily. The Blue spells Missile and Death Claw work, as do the Gravity
and Stop spells from the Time spell book. And hey, you've still got a
Two-Handed Berserker with the Gaia Hammer or Death Sickle itching for business.

Since the Manticore is vulnerable to Death and Petrify, you could Catch a Mani
Wizard (Death) or Undead Husk (Break) to take care of it; the Death Sickle's
random Death spell will also do it in.

There are two items you can steal from the Manticore. The Wind Spear is a new
Spear, but the Javelin you could have obtained from the Sand Bear is quite a
lot better and the odds of you getting a Wind Spear are terrible. There are no
enemies that are weak to Wind that you encounter before you can buy the Wind
Spear in stores, so the elemental edge is also non-existant. The Dragon Fang is
a Mix item so inherently inferior to a new weapon, but it's probably the first
one you'll get your hands on and it expands your Mix movepool.

The Manticore shouldn't pose you with much troubles. It does, however, pose you
with a Phoenix Down.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.25.1  Right and Ready
**********************************

When all has been said and done, the warp spot to Galuf's World is on the
peninsula south-east of Tule. But before you go, let's take a look at
everything we could've gotten so far and see if we haven't missed anything.
None of the spells are missable, and it's no big deal if you miss any. 

White spells:
Cure, Libra, Poisona, Silence, Protect, Mini, Cura, Raise, Confuse, Esuna

Black spells:
Fire, Blizzard, Thunder, Poison, Sleep, Toad, Fira, Blizzara, Thundara

Time spells:
Speed, Slow, Regen, Silence, Haste, Gravity, Stop

Summon spells:
Chocobo, Sylph, Remora, Shiva, Ramuh, Ifrit, Titan

Blue:
Aqua Breath     Level 5 Death   Level 4 Graviga Pond's Chorus
Flash           Moon Flute      Death Claw      Aero
Aera            Flame Thrower   Goblin Punch    Dark Spark
Off-Guard       Transfusion     Vampire         Magic Hammer
Self-Destruct   ???             1000 Needles    White Wind
Missile

Songs:
Mighty March, Romeo's Ballad, Alluring Air

While the spells listed above are not missable throughout the game, the three
Songs are. Get them now, or miss them forever. 

Pianos:
Tule, Carwen, Jachol, Karnak, Crescent

Special treasures:
Those in the Cave of Jachol
The treasures guarded by Jackanapes

Past this point, you will never be able to return to Walse Castle to collect
the treasures guarded by Jackanapes, so get 'em now.

Noteworthy items:
The Iron Shield, Cotton Robe and Kenpo Gi all become unavailable forever past
this point. If you've never bought any but want a full item list at the end of
the game, travel to Walse to buy what you lack in your inventory.

Bestiary (30%):
Normal enemies: #1 - #69
Aquatic enemies: #191 - #196
Boss enemies: #243 - #265

Have you gotten enough Dark Matter items from the Prototypes? There's no such
thing as too many of them, you know. Scrolls you can always buy in Lix; it'll
be a while before you can buy them again. If you plan on using !Mix-a-lot,
YOU'D BETTER LIKE BIG BUTTS, I mean, I suggest you stock up on Turtle Shells;
they are one of the ingredients of Succubus Kiss, what'll probably by your main
attacking move coming from Mixing.

Also, if you want to buy Rings in Istory, it's certainly worthy of
consideration. You'll have to fight extra to afford new equipment in the next
parts of the game, but especially an Angel Ring is a worthy addition to any
team. I'd advise against it as you don't actually need one at any time and it
obstructs you from going on when you should, but it's up to you. Scrolls to
Throw are also nice to have in bulk as it'll be a while before you can buy them
again; especially Water Scrolls and Lightning Scrolls are nice.

Seatbelt? Tray table in locked and upright position? Got your towel? Then, as
German-born theoretical physicist Albert Einstein once said: Let's roll.

Three heroes leap into the unknown...

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.26.1  Alien World; Pao Island
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Pao (#70)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Tent (guaranteed Pao drop)

Okay, so it's not really called Pao Island. It doesn't have an actual name, but
it's an island full of Pao monsters without any other features. You think of a
name, brainiac.

There's nothing to do here. You can just walk around. There's Pao in the
forests, Pao on the grasslands and Pao in the marshlands. Every small minute,
no matter what you do, Lenna will suggest setting up a Tent. Never take girls
camping, lemme tell ya, all they want to do is cuddle. Save now, and prepare
Bartz for a solo battle.

Actually using a Tent gets you a cutscene where Lenna and Faris are 'abducted'
and Bartz is attacked by an aptly named 'Abductor'.

Abductor
Level: 22, HP: 1500, MP: 2000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Gaia Gear (rare)
Win: Ether (always)
Status: Float (always)
Can't Evade: Aerial
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Confuse, Berserk,
  Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Hurricane

This is a battle you can lose without getting a Game Over; you'll want to win,
though, for a sweet Ether and a Bestiary entry. Since you'll be fighting alone
and Abductor knows Hurricane (which it can use every turn), your objective here
is to counter that somehow. There are plenty of ways.

A Monk with !Guard or Knight with Counter will net you victory, but anything
that allows Bartz to heal is grand enough; the !Blue skillset gives access to
Vampire, which will almost never miss. !Time's Stop and Gravity spells are
great ways around the fight; Stop will last a long time. That's just for
winning the battle, though; if you want a shot at that rare Gaia Gear, a Thief
is a necessity. Barehanded, !Mix, !Blue, !White, !Red and !Time all include
ways of really screwing this guy over.

The Abductor may use Hurricane on the very first turn, dropping Bartz' HP down
to a single digit. NEVER take the first turn; you'll want to be able to
retaliate immediately should Hurricane make an appearance. Keep your eye out
for Hurricane, heal up when it comes and keep damaging the Abductor until it
dies. Show that demon what the Bartz of War is all about.

If you win, you'll get an Ether for you troubles, a Bestiary entry for Abductor
and a chest containing...poison gas. Crud, you lose.

If you lose, you'll just get taken away by the Abductor. So no Ether for you,
and no Bestiary entry for Abductor either. Crud, you lose.

Trivia: if you win the battle, you get to walk around. Notice how the unlit
campfire is one of the very few 2D objects in the game.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.27.1  Galuf to the rescue; the first fight with Gilgamesh
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Tarantula (#71), Shell Bear (#72), Gilgamesh (#267)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Spear (rare Shell Bear steal)

  B2:
  35 % Shell Bear
  35 % Tarantula x 2
  23 % Shell Bear, Tarantula x 2
   6 % Tarantula x 4

  B3:
  35 % Tarantula x 2
  35 % Tarantula x 4
  23 % Shell Bear
   6 % Shel Bear, Tarantula x 2

It seems Exdeath had a lot of followers waiting for it on Galuf's World.
There's a castle and there's an army of monsters, and you're in the middle of
it, being held hostage in a jail cell. Resistance is useless. Not even Bartz'
Superman reference helps out here.

Galuf appears not to be the type to be impressed by terrorists. He rushes to
the castle on a Wind Drake's back, leaving his army behind to rescue his
friends Rambo-style. Wait, there's Wind Drakes on this planet as well?

When you're able to control him again, he'll be by his lonesome in a dungeon
with random encounters. They're fit for the situation though, so extremely
easy.

Tarantulas are weak to Ice-elemental attacks, but with 200 HP they won't live
through anything anyway. They may use Web which sets Slow, but only if you let
them live to allow them. They always drop Potions.

Shell Bears are a bit bulkier at 380 HP, but you should still be able to kill
them with whatever you use. They have a rare Spear for stealing, which is
horrible. It's an even weaker weapon than the Mythril Spear (the weakest Lance
you can have at the moment) but it's unique so you'll probably want one. If
you don't get one now, you'll lose out on the opportunity to obtain one forever,
but we can wait until we get our teammates back.  Luckily, Shell Bear has no
common Steal item so just continue trying until you've got it. You can cast
Toad or Pond's Chorus to make life easier on you in the meantime.

The only door you can enter leads to a Save Point, which you may choose to use,
or not use, it's up to you. If you press on, you'll end up in an apparantly
featureless room. The water on both sides functions as a Recovery Spring, but
Galuf starts out fully healed anyway. This first area is devoid of monsters.
Basements 2 & 3 have Shell Bears and Tarantula's in them, but they shouldn't be
much trouble. At the end of B 3, Gilgamesh waits for you.

Gilgamesh
Level: 26, HP: 11500 (effectively), MP: 2000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Nothing
Win: Elixir (always)
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Mini, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks:

A short introduction of Gilgamesh is in order, I believe. Gilgamesh set the
tone for upcoming Final Fantasy games; a recurring villain that's more of a
comic relief than anything else. Gilgamesh himself would later appear in other
Final Fantasy games, switching between a powerful adversary or ally wielding
legendary weapons or an incompetent but fierce warrior who wields cheap and
useless imitations of said weapons. Surprisingly enough, Gilgamesh is one of
the very few characters in the Final Fantasy games that's supposed to be a
single entity; his appearance is often justified by 'traveling through
dimensions'. Anyway, at this point Gilgamesh is at the starting point of his
long career, and but a lackey to his master, Exdeath.

The purpose of this fight is to damage Gilgamesh slightly to that he runs away.
However if you actually manage to 'kill' Gilgamesh, you'll get an Elixir! If
you want to get it, you'll need either !Time or !Blue, providing you got Death
Claw. For winning the battle, just !Time will get the job done quickly enough
as Gravity prompts him to escape immediately. The Mini status makes him 
completely harmless. Just with damage, you only need to deal 1500 HP damage to 
him, his defenses are absent and his attacks are nothing to worry about. A Main 
Gauche and Elven Mantle both help, but are not necessary. For Clothes Galuf, 
anything with Counter works, and Heavy Armor Galuf has the power of the 
Berserker on his side. You can't really lose.

Note: unlike other monsters, Gilgamesh will make a showing in your Bestiary
even if you don't kill him directly.

If you're going for the kill, know that Gilgamesh will use Flee as a counter to
any damage he takes damage past the initial 1500 HP. Since Death Claw won't 
actually damage, just set his HP to a single digit, he won't respond with 
escape; follow up Death Claw with any ol' damaging spell and you're good. 
Alternatively, cast Slow on Gilgamesh and Haste on yourself. Wait for Gilgamesh
to take a turn, then cast Stop on him. Quickly cast a succession of Gravity or 
Missile spells 'til he's in killing range, then finish him off.

Better keep him in the back of your head. Because next time? He'll be deadly
serious next time.

At any rate, Galuf liberates his friends (don't worry, they're all still
equipped with equipment and Jobs) so you can get out. You can once again Save
at the Save Point. It's time to get back to Galuf's Castle and regroup, so
we'll have to cross the Big Bridge Galuf followed on Krile's Wind Drake.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.27.2  Escape to the Big Bridge
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Devilfish (#73), Treant (#74), Strapparer (#75)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Elixir (rare Strapparer steal)

  Blue spells:
  Dark Spark, Death Claw, Transfusion

  Grassland:
  35 % Strapparer x3
  35 % Strapparer, Treant, Devilfish
  30 % Strapparer x2, Treant x2

  Forests:
  Always: Treant x3

  Marshlands:
  Always: Devilfish x3

This is Galuf's world, which is actually quite similar to Bartz'. There are
swamps here, can you believe it? Swamps yield great results with !Gaia, as an
attack called Bottomless Bog may appear. Bottomless Bog kills everything by
being an unblockable Death-setting attack (fails if target is Heavy).

Devilfish are weird fish-like creatures that reside in swamps. They absorb
Water-elemental attacks and are weak to Lightning-elemental ones, like most
aquatic creatures. When Confused or Controlled they can use Transfusion, so you
can learn it from them if you haven't learned it earlier. They can attack
physically or by using Digestive Acid (remember, that annoying non-elemental
attack which sets Slow and Sap?).

Treants cast Berserk on themselves and allies to make their physical attacks
stronger. For your Blue Mages this is a shame, as every second turn they can
use Death Claw. If you never learned it from Iron Claw, now's your chance.
They're weak to Fire-elemental attacks. You cannot use !Control for Death
Claw, sadly.

Strapparer are bizarre creatures entering our world through a rift in reality.
This, however, doesn't make them very powerful. They randomly use Dark Spark,
so you can pick that up if you haven't earlier, and you can Control them to
gain access to the Death Claw spell. They have Elixirs (rarely) for stealing
and are weak to Lightning-elemental attacks but absorb Fire-elemental attacks.

Whatever you do, there's nothing to really to do but to get to the Big Bridge
to the West of Castle Exdeath. Ramuh makes short work of most encounters here,
as does !Gaia when walking in swamps.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.27.3  The Big Bridge; the second fight with Gilgamesh
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Merrow (#76), Flying Killer (#77), Little Chariot (#78), Neo Galura (#79),
  Gilgamesh (#268)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Trident (rare Gilgamesh steal)

  Blue spells:
  Goblin Punch, Aera

Welcome to the Big Bridge! That theme you're hearing is world-famous for being
kick-ass, so try not to find it to awesome. You might get 'mainstream'. The Big
Bridge houses monsters you'll only find when touching a certain tile on the
bridge. All tiles except for the introductionary one (the one that causes Galuf
to give his warning) are randomly turned 'on' and 'off' so you could cross a
tile which could get you monsters without getting any monsters.

  X: Exit
  1: Little Chariot x 3
  2: NeoGalura
  3: Merrow x 3
  4: NeoGalura, Merrow x 2
  5. Little Chariot x 2, Flying Killer x 2 AND Little Chariot x 3
  6: Flying Killer x 3

   ***
  ** **: Midsection, Gilgamesh battle
   ***


         X
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        5..
        ...
        ..5
        ...
        ...
        ...
        44.
        ...
        ...
        ..2
        ...
        ...
        .3.
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        .4.
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ***
       ** **
        ***
        ...
        ...
        .6.
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        45.
        ...
        ...
        .5.
        5..
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ..4
        ...
        ...
        ...
        .3.
        ...
        ..2
        ...
        ...
        ...
        111
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
        ...
         X

X: Exit
1: Little Chariot x 3
2: NeoGalura
3: Merrow x 3
4: NeoGalura, Merrow x 2
5. Little Chariot x 2, Flying Killer x 2 AND Little Chariot x 3
6: Flying Killer x 3

 ***
** **: Midsection, Gilgamesh battle
 ***

I'd hate to sound less then interested in the monsters here, but the thing is
they're rather boring. All of them attack physically only with the exception of
Little Chariot, which randomly uses Mustard Bomb, which does about 300 damage
and sets Sap. Neo Galura rarely drops Water Scrolls, but no other items of real
interest appear. You can Catch none of them, would be a point of interest if
you're interested in those kinds of points of interest. Ninja Scrolls and
Summon monsters are both able to clean house quickly and efficiently. All
monsters here are unique to the Big Bridge, so make sure to meet them all now
for a full Bestiary.

Taking that most Buddhist of all approaches, the middle road, will net you the
most encounters here. NeoGalura is often missed; keeping to the right of the
Big Bridge, below the Midsection, will quickly bring you into contact with the
troublesome tapir.

Gilgamesh
Level: 28, HP: 6500, MP: 1000
Defense: 14, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Trident (rare), Hero Cocktail (common)
Win: Wizard's Hat (always, in theory)
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Old, Berserk, (*Silence), Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack, Jump, Haste, Protect, Shell, Goblin Punch,
  Aera, Electrocute, Wind Slash

Gilgamesh certainly buffed up this time. Contrary to popular legends, you can
NOT Steal a piece of Genji equipment from Gilgamesh this time; you'll have to
do with the normal Hero Cocktail or the rare Trident.

Gilgamesh will normally attack with physical attacks, Goblin Punch, Aera and
Wind Slash. Wind Slash is by far its most powerful attack, dealing just shy of
400 damage to all characters. When he's gotten enough of a beat-down and has 
but 2500 HP left, the next hit he absorbs will cause a counter consisting out 
of a demented little speech and the casting of Protect, Shell and Haste, all 
nasty enough in their own right. He'll start using Jump after that. On enemies,
Jump is a physical magic attack; its deal physical damage insomuch that it deals
with the target's Defense, but its power comes from the caster's Magic Power. 
It's unblockable, by the way, and Elven Mantles won't help. The Protect status
will, however.

When you "kill" him, he'll use Flee, robbing you of the Wizard's Hat you
otherwise would have obtained. He's immune to both Paralyze and Stop, so
there's no avoiding it this time.

The strategy to follow is easy. Put together a damaging team that can take a
Wind Slash and heal up from it. Casting Mute in this battle will prove very
beneficial, since the Haste/Protect/Shell combo really turns Gilgamesh into a
nuisance. You can turn your Mages into Blue Mages so you can still attack and
heal. 

The Ancient Sword is capable of setting Old on the guy, which helps out in
the long run. You can wait for a bit until Gilgamesh' level to lower to 1. 
Mages should stick to 1000 Needles or (when Mute was neglected) boosted Gaia's 
Wrath, support all allies with Haste, cast Slow and possibly cast Mute before 
Gilgamesh increases his potential. In the original Super Famicom game, Gilgamesh
was vulernable to the Silence status, so you could use that.

Gilgamesh doesn't have any weakness to exploit, so damaging him at this stage
of the game where everything but !Zeninage is more or less balanced out is
kinda difficult. His attacks aren't that dangerous though, so you'll win the
fight for sure.

When you're done, there's the second part of the Big Bridge. Make sure you meet
all monsters here if you want that perfect Bestiary.

When you're almost to the other side, the forces within Castle Exdeath and its
four Barrier Towers put up the barrier, a destructive force which surrounds
Castle Exdeath and forcefully blows away anything that is hit by the barrier.
The Light Warriors just aren't quick enough.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.28.1  The lands of Gloceana
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Tunneller (#80), Birostris (#81), Fairy Orc (#82), Devourer (#83), Mandrake
  (#84)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Holy Water (common Fairy Orc steal)

  Blue spells:
  Transfusion

  Eastern Grasslands:
  58 % Tunneller x 2
  42 % Tunneller, Birostris x 2

  Marshlands:
  35 % Devourer, Fairy Orc x 2
  35 % Devourer, Tunneller x 2
  30 % Mandrake, Devourer x 2

  Forests:
  70 % Birostris x 5
  30 % Tunneller x 2

  Grasslands near Regole:
  35 % Fairy Orc x 3
  35 % Fairy Orc, Tunneller, Birostris
  23 % Birostris x 5
   6 % Tunneller x 2

We've been misplaced in space and are currently residing in Gloceana. It's a
long hike through monster-infected marshlands to civilization, and the kind of
civilization we'll find once we get there is a mystery.

Tunnellers can use Dischord to halve your effective level for the duration of
the fight. That's about the extent of their powers. Birostris' will use
Transfusion on occasion unless they're alone ,like their palette swaps; we've
been over this. The Devourer and Mandrake enemies will just attack you
physically and throw some yucky goo your way; either Digestive Acid (Mandrake)
or Slimer (Devourer). Note that Devourers absorb Lightning-elemental attacks,
so your first instinct (zap aqua-things) is wrong. Mandrakes are weak to
Fire.

The most interesting enemies are the Fairy Orcs. If they're struck with a Cure
spell, they'll heal the entire party with a Curaga spell. You can write
fanfiction on why they do that; I'll proofread that for you no problem. In
addition, if they find a character dead, they'll use Paraclete to raise it as a
Zombie. Neither of these things should happen to you, but knowing is half the
battle and the sooner we can get rid of these things, the better.

You can obtain Holy Water from these creatures, which cures the Zombie status.
It's not very likely you'll need to recover from that status anytime soon,
but Holy Water is an interesting !Mix reagent.

It's not hard. Just walk all the way to the East. Stick to the Marshlands where
possible; you'll definitely have an awesome !Gaia advantage there as Bottomless
Bog will just kill the entire enemy party every time it appears.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.28.2  Regole
**********************************

  Features:
  Piano, endless 100 Gil machine

Welcome to Regole! It's a small town surrounded by monsters on every side. As a
solution to this problem, Regole has developed a secret weapon: alcohol.
Regole's beer appears to be legendary. Speaking of 'legendary', to the south
lies the sealed castle of Kuza, which houses the Twelve Weapons used in a
forgotten war. Let's check it out. For now, the Inn Keeper gives us a free
night, so let's take a rest. There's a cutscene.

Now, exploit capitalism.

Magic Shop (White):
Blink               3000 Gil
Shell               3000 Gil
Esuna               3000 Gil
  You could've obtained Esuna earlier. Neither Blink nor Shell is vital for
anything, though both are nice to have. Blink sets two Images on a single
target, like the Ninja's !Image ability. Shell cuts magical damage and magical
hit rates in half. They're both very good, even if they're not needed in the
literal sense of the word. If you're short on Gil, I suggest you skip these 
spells for now; they are beneficial afterthoughts to strategies at best.

Magic Shop (Black):
Drain              3000 Gil
Break              3000 Gil
Bio                3000 Gil
  These spells are all awesome. Drain isn't all that damaging but could be
useful for your Black Mage; it makes for an awesome Spellblade effect, though;
it simply heals the Mystic Knight(-wannabe) for whatever damage is dealt to the
target. Don't strike Undead creatures, though. Break sets Petrify, so when you
know what's vulnerable it's a great one-hit KO move. Again, you'll be surprised
how often I'm going to advise Break Spellblade from now on to circumvent level-
based hit rates; physical attacks are much easier to connect. Bio's just a
stronger and Poison-elemental spell for your Black Mages. It's stronger than
your boosted -ra spells and ignores Magic Defense almost entirely, so buy it.
You'll be able to boost it in a short while ;)

Magic Shop (Time):
Comet               3000 Gil
Slowga              3000 Gil
Return              3000 Gil
  The Time Mage finally gets some serious use! Comet is the first offensive
spell the Time Mage obtains. What it lacks in power and dependable nature (it's
power is rather random), it's non-elemental nature and the fact it ignores the
Reflect status makes it a decent attack. Slowga's just MT Slow. Return is
awesome. It allows the player to completely restart a battle, everything about
the obtained results erased. This can not only save you when things are looking
particularly grim, it's most popular use lies in obtaining rare Steals every
time from now on as even one-time only monsters can now be fought until you've
gotten what you want. This way, not obtaining rare steals is nothing but proof
of your weakness. A second purpose in casting Return could be to re-roll the
formation; Pre-emptive and Back Attacks chances are calculated again, allowing
any party with the Return spell to circumvent Back Attacks completely if
they survive the first round to cast the spell.

Weapon Shop:
Orichalcum Dirk     3400 Gil
War Hammer          6400 Gil
Ashura              5800 Gil
Sleep Blade         5600 Gil
Wind Spear          5400 Gil
Dark Bow            3800 Gil
Dream Harp          1600 Gil
Chain Whip          3300 Gil
  These new weapons, though all-round new and powerful, won't really mean much
to you at the moment. The Sleep Blade is nice, but most people will be using
Samurai or Dragoons at the moment. The Orichalcum Dirk is nice for Thieves and
Ninjas, the Wind Spear is an increase for your Dragoons if you haven't stolen
a Javelin and the Chain Whip is, thankfully, a new Whip with Paralyzing
features. All other weapons are more or less useless now. You've - if everything
went well - already obtained an Ashura and one or more Dark Bows. The War Hammer
is weaker than both the Death Scythe and Gaia Hammer and the Dream Harp flat-out
sucks. Dealing 1/8 current HP damage and adding Sleep. Pshw. New Weapons should
be your last priority with your Gil.

Armor Shop:
Golden Shield       3000 Gil
Golden Helm         3500 Gil
Green Beret         2500 Gil
Wizard's Hat        1500 Gil
Golden Armor        4000 Gil
Ninja Suit          3000 Gil
Gaia Gear           2000 Gil
  Everything's peachy here. The only two things that stand out are the Wizard's
Hat and the Gaia Gear. The former shouldn't be bought if you have Lamia's
Tiaras as even though they have 1 point extra Defense, they're inferior in all
other areas. The Gaia Gear is awesome; if you haven't stolen them from
Sorcerers when escaping Karnak castle, you can finally get them. They boost
Earth-elemental attacks, oh yes they do, and Titan will benefit greatly from
it.

One important thing to now realize is that by combining the Gaia Gear and a
!Summon ability high enough to summon Titan, ANY Robe and Hybrid Job can
perform as a very powerful mage. This is an excellent opportunity to train
those Jobs that normally lack this ability, such as Bards, Chemists, Dancers
and White Mages. Remember, Magic Power will be upgraded together with the
!Summon ability. The Dancer will even be able to replenish MP by itself due to
!Dance's 25% Mystery Waltz performance.

Item Shop:
Hi-Potion            360 Gil
Potion                40 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil

Ether               1500 Gil
Holy Water           150 Gil
Cottage              600 Gil
Goliath Tonic        110 Gil
Power Drink          110 Gil
Speed Shake          110 Gil
Iron Draft           110 Gil
Hero Cocktail        110 Gil
  The Item Shops on this planet are notably superior to those on Bartz' old
planet. Hi-Potions can now be consistently used by everybody, you can buy Holy
Water (useful for !Mix) and the five liquids consumable by the Chemist's !Drink
command are purchasable as well. If you wanna know how good they are, try out
[DRINK-LINK]. I don't really recommend anything, just buy some Holy Water since
you won't have a lot of it, and stock up on what you need more of.

There's a little girl between both shops who has lost her Ribbon. You can talk
to her by using the secret passage in the Armor Shop, but she can't be of any
use to you now. People are valued by their possessions!

At the Pub, you can get on stage to Dance 4 Gil! 100 Gil isn't that much,
though. If you've got Find Passages on you, you'll be able to see the secret
passage which leads to the game's sixth piano. Play it to improve your piano
skills; the song played is a bit called 'Beautiful Dreamer' by Stephen Foster.
The biggest asset this town has to offer, though, is its awesome selection of
new spells and equipment. If you lack the money to buy everything you want,
training is of the essence, young padawan.

That's all, folks. I'm bored, let's travel south. You'll come across a castle!
You were warned about this castle...

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.29.1  The sealed castle of Kuza
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Tunneller (#80), Birostris (#81), Fairy Orc (#82), Devourer (#83), Mandrake
  (#84), Kuza Beast (#85), Shield Dragon (#86)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Elixir (rare Kuza Beast drop)

  Blue spells:
  Transfusion, ???

  Marshlands:
  35 % Devourer, Fairy Orc x 2
  35 % Devourer, Tunneller x 2
  30 % Mandrake, Devourer x 2

  Forests:
  70 % Birostris x 5
  30 % Tunneller x 2

  Grasslands near Regole:
  35 % Fairy Orc x 3
  35 % Fairy Orc, Tunneller, Birostris
  23 % Birostris x 5
   6 % Tunneller x 2

  Grasslands south of the sealed castle of Kuza
  35 % Mandrake, Tunneller, Birostris
  35 % Fairy Orc, Tunneller, Birostris
  30 % Kuza Beast

  Grasslands east of the sealed castle of Kuza
  35 % Birostris x 5
  35 % Tunneller x 2
  30 % Kuza Beast

The Kuza Beast looks very, very intimidating right now. It has massive damage
potential, too; it uses the Blue spell ??? every turn, and with 5000 HP that
turns out to be a one-hit KO attack very quickly. There are few ways to
circumvent the Kuza Beasts from ripping you interesting new ways to bleed.
!Control is the obvious one. Kuza Beasts can also be petrified, so a Break
spell or Break Spellblade effect takes him out in a single shot. If you don't
damage the Kuza Beast it'll never damage you, so there's plenty of time to set
up your Mystic Knight. Kuza Beasts are not Heavy, so Death Claw + anything is a
good strategy as well.

If you enter the castle, make sure you have either !Control, !Flee or !Smoke
set on a character, since the following enemy encountered here is almost 
impossible to either defeat or manually run from. 

Shield Dragon
Level: 29, HP: 19999, MP: 20000
Defense: 40, Magic Defense: 25
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 50%
Steal: Gold Shield (rare), Mythril Shield (common)
Win: Golden Shield (rare)
Status: Reflect, Protect, Shell
Creature: Heavy, Dragon
Special Technique: !Hard Hit
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Knock Silly, Zombie Breath, Flee

When you've entered the sealed castle, its halls are derelict. But all is not
silent in the halls of the dead; guarding the relics of old, the ancient
weapons of yore, are Shield Dragons. They've got quite a bit of Defense and
Magic Defense, have an inherent Protect, Shell and Reflect status and attack
with a lot of force. Physical attacks are bad; it's Special !Knock Silly sets
Confuse. It may also use Zombie Breath, an MT non-elemental and random-damage
attack which sets Zombie on every character it kills. There're but two ways to
deal with a Shield Dragon. You can either run from them or Control them.
Controlling them allows you to use Blaze on themselves for 4999 damage every
time. After four Blaze attacks, the Shield Dragon should only have 3 HP left;
something a physical in the back should be able to take care of.

Fun fact: !Catch one and it'll use Almagest, an MT Holy-elemental attack. It's
not incredibly powerful coming from Shield Dragon (around 750 damage), but it's
this game's final boss trademark attack; only this cretin and some other random
enemy uses it when Released. Fairy Orcs absorb it, since it's Holy-elemental!

Jumping Jehosaphat!

The twelve weapons have been petrified by the millennium they haven't been
touched. Still, they represent a powerful force of good, and their names should
sound familiar to most players.

Excalibur               Knightsword
Assassin's Dagger       Knife
Sasuke's Katana         Ninja Blade
Holy Lance              Lance
Rune Axe                Axe
Masamune                Katana
Yoichi's Bow            Bow
Fire Lash               Whip
Sage's Staff            Staff
Magus Rod               Rod
Apollo's Harp           Harp
Gaia Bell               Bell

Galuf's enthusiasm is touching, but there's really nothing here but dusty and
once-powerful museum pieces. Let's get out of here and travel further, down
south and east. You'll be able to meet Kuza Beasts on the grasslands south of
the Sealed Castle.

Note that between Bestiary entry #86 (Shield Dragon) and #88 (Blood Slime, an
enemy from the upcoming dungeon), Bestiary entry #87 will be empty for a long
long time from now on, possibly worrying completionists. Don't worry,
completionists. The void in your Bestiary and life will be filled eventually.

Eventually, you'll stop encountering monsters altogether, and you have but to
go east to enter a forest.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.30.1  The power is yours; saving the planet one Moogle at the time
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Blood Slime (#88), Acrophies (#89), Moogle Eater (#90), Lesser Lopros (#91),
  Tyrannosaur (#269)

  Container contents:
  4400 Gil, Phoenix Down

  Miscellaneous items:
  Elixir (rare Tyrannosaur drop)

  Blue spells:
  ???, Vampire

There's a Moogle a-treehuggin' nearby, but as soon as you talk to the Moogle,
he'll make a run for it and fall down a hole. Lenna's big heart for everything
non-human makes another appearance and the crew decides to follow the Moogle
and pull it out of its own problems. Welcome to the Underground Waterway.

Note: you could also NOT talk to the Moogle and leave the forest at the other
side. However, this'll just get you to a large desert surrounded by grassland
and forest. While helping the Moogle creates another location in this part of
the Overworld Map, it's not yet there. The two enemies you can meet in the
desert, Cactus and Sandcrawler, are not worth your specific attention at this
time and place in your life.

"I pushed my soul - into a deep dark hole - and then I followed it in..."

  Main cave:
  35 % Blood Slime x 3
  35 % Moogle Eater, Acrophies, Blood Slime
  23 % Lesser Lopros
   6 % Blood Slime x 6

  Small pathway:
  35 % Acrophies x 4
  35 % Moogle Eater x 2
  23 % Lesser Lopros x 2
   6 % Lesser Lopros

*A* battles:    Moogle Eater x 2    OR Acrophies x 4
*B* battles:    Acrophies x 4       OR Moogle Eater, Acrophies, Blood Slime

Whenever you get into the water in this cave, there are set tiles you're swept
past which WILL trigger a battle every time you pass it. Walk into the water,
and the current will sweep you onto a new piece of dry land. In the meantime,
there's an *A* fight.

The Acrophies are the most dangerous opponents since their physical attacks
often come in waves of four are quite painful, especially their special
technique called !Pincer. Level 5 Death or a helpful summoning of Ramuh takes
them out right away.

Moogle Eaters are just stupid squids that don't really know how to take damage
or dish it out. The kind of enemy that brings a tentacle to a gun fight.

The Blood Slimes cannot avoid ANY spell. No, seriously, try it. It's a shame
the unblockable Ifrit takes them down in a single hit, else it'd be something
to take advantage of. They're inherently Poisoned, but you won't notice since
Poison stops taking effects when they're dead, which should be about 2 seconds
into the battle. They can randomly use Vampire, but only when they're alive
(which they are almost never). Since they're dying all the time, I'm assuming
they live from sucking blood from the other monsters here?

Lesser Lopros' have high defenses, are immune to the Poison elemental and can
randomly use Breath Wing and Frost to make life difficult for you. To counter,
use Fire-elemental attacks and the Toad status.

The best way to deal with every single encounter here - except for the Lesser
Lopros - is a boosted Judgment Bolt. It will kill everything in a single hit
and isn't as harsh on your MP as Titan is. Lightning Scrolls also function 
properly. Acrophies are the most dangerous enemies here, as they have quite 
some Defense and are physically powerful; Level 5 Death works on them. If you 
have !Summon and/or !Blue set, Lesser Lopros succumb to Pond's Chorus and Level 
4 Graviga spells. Having a Thief or another Job with the Vigilance support
ability helps prevent Back Attacks, which can be devastating when it's four
Acrophies pinching your ass. 

On the next dry bit, you've but one options: walk into the water again. Two *B*
battles, a new current, a new piece of dry land.

Here, there's a chest containing 4400 Gil. You can take two paths here; the one
to the left and the one to the right. Should you go with the left slope, you'll
fight an *A* battle and a *B* battle and appear in front of a small pathway
where Lesser Lopros are abundant. You can take it to the main exit with a
Phoenix Down chest. Should you go with the right slope, you'll fight a *B*
battle and then an *A* battle and another bit of dry land before you have to
fight another *A* battle. There's the Phoenix Down chest again.

At the end of this rock formation, you'll find "Mr. Moogle" cornered by some
Undead Horror. Approach to face the thing.

Tyrannosaur
Level: 29, HP: 5000, MP: 1000
Defense: 20, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Golden Shield (rare), Nothing (common), Win: Elixir (rare)
Nullifies: Ice
Weakness: Fire
Creature: Dragon, Undead
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack, ???, Poison Breath

The Tyrannosaur isn't that hard, rest assured. It's got a big head, a lot of
teeth and no flesh to speak of, but that's about it. It'll attack physically
every turn, with Attack and !Critical Attack. Every non-magical attack will be
countered by either Attack, !Critical Attack or the Blue ??? spell, which
you'll definitely want to avoid. It'll kill a character rather quickly into the
battle.

When hit by a Wind, Earth, Water or Holy-elemental attack, it'll counter with
Poison Breath on the entire party, but that's not too bad since you have no
reason to attack the Tyrannosaur with any of those elemental attacks in the
first place. The omni-counter takes preference over the counter to the
elemental attack counter, so only the truly Magical elemental attacks will
provoke Poison Breath; Aero and Aera will; summoning Titan will, Jumping with a
Wind Spear, Throwing a Water Scroll and !Gaia's Wind Slash won't.

   iOS/Android: They changed Tyrannosaur's Poison Breath counter to react to 
   Magic spells: !Blue, !White, !Summon, !Time and !Black. The element of the
   attack no longer matters. If the attack doesn't provoke Poison Breath, it
   provokes the Attack/!Critical Attack/??? counter. For this reason, don't
   use spells and stick to throwing Phoenix Downs or setting Berserk with a 
   Bacchus' Cider (Holy Water and Turtle Shell) to circumvent the Poison Breath
   counter. 

The bane of this thing's semi-existence is any reviving item. Since its Undead
but not Heavy, a Phoenix Down may kill it. Note that when the effect is
inverted, it becomes susceptible to hit rates and thus may miss; Elixirs remain
unblockable, so they'll reduce Tyrannosaur's HP to a single digit without fail.
Tyrannosaur is equally vulnerable to the Samurai's !Iainuki, Gravity spells,
Blue Missile and Death Claw spells, the Dancer's !Flirt, you name it. Should
you want to go with some straight damaging attacks, boosted Fira and Flame
Thrower spells and Fira Spellblade work like a charm.

If there's anything to watch out for in this battle, it's the possibility of
??? appearing, which will likely kill a character, though it may miss due to
Magic Evasion. To avoid this, stick to magical attacks; !Time, !Blue (but not
Aera!), !Summon (but not Titan!), !Black and !White will never provoke
counters, and with only physical attacks to worry about (which can be stopped
by Darkness as well), it's not a dangerous fight. In the end, it'll rarely drop
an Elixir.

This guy shouldn't be too much of a bother. When the Moogle is free to move,
he'll show you the way to something. The message is clear, though; don't wander
into the desert. 'Kay.

Whatever you say...

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.30.2  The Legacy of Mr. Moogle; Defiance
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Cactus (#92), Sandcrawler (#93)

  Blue spells:
  1000 Needles

  Encounters:
  35 % Cactus x 3
  35 % Sandcrawler
  30 % Sandcrawler, Cactus x 2

Onto the Desert! I'm sure there's untold riches. Maybe that love interest for
Bartz we're all still waiting for. Or maybe not, but a Moogle is a white and
hot -pink bat/mole hybrid, and I'll be damned if we're ever going to take
advice from it. It says so in Das Kapital. Also, the Cactus and Sandcrawler
enemies that appear in the desert are unique to this location. I dunno about
you, but I have trouble sleeping if I know I'm heading for an incomplete
Bestiary. Note that none of the random encounters here can be escaped from, not
even with !Flee or !Smoke. 

Cacti are the far less dangerous critters you'll encounter here. They attack
physically and are weak to Water-elemental attacks. You can Control them into
using 1000 Needles; if you missed the spell against the Lamia monsters you can
pick it up here. They're weak to Water-elemental attacks, so a Water Scroll
should definitely come in handy versus them. They've got a Heavy nature, by the
way, which is surprising for an unassuming opponent such as the Cactus. They're
Desert creatures as well, so Aqua Breath deals eight times as much damage; if
you've never done 4000 damage before, now's your chance.

Sandcrawler
Level: 29, HP: 15000, MP: 1000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 5
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 50%
Steal: Tent (rare)
Win: Power Drink (always)
Creature: Desert, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze,
  Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Maelstrom

The real threat are the Sandcrawlers, thankfully never appearing with more than
a single Sandcrawler in a single battle. They have 15000 HP, which is thrice as
much as that of the Tyrannosaur you faced a minute ago. Every turn they may use
Maelstrom to lower your party's HP to a single digit. They're powerful on the
physical attacks as well. They're hardly undefeatable, though. Control one and
you've bought a ticket to victory. Petrify works so Break and the Break
Spellblade effects will be able to take one down no problem. A Death Potion can
kill one, as can the Death Sickle's random Death spell. I'd just go with what
the Mystic Knight can offer you (Break Spellblade effects, for the slow people)
as it's the most reliable. Aqua Breath, by the way, will deal a LOT of damage
as well (around 4000 or beyond, depending on level and Magic prowess), so...

Anyway, there's really nothing here. It's something for your Bestiary, these
things don't appear anywhere else. Now, go find that place where Mr. Moogle
went off to. The hairball must be around here somewhere. From the west-southern
most corner, take one step to the east and up 'til you enter the Moogle
Village.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.30.3  The Moogle Village
**********************************

  Container contents:
  1 Gil, 10000 Gil, Cottage, Dancing Dagger, Elven Cloak, Ether, Phoenix Down

As soon as you enter, the Moogles scatter like wild. You can't exit either;
some frenzied Moogle will always run past you, blocking your path. There's
three trees here with a door; the right-most one is accompanied by Mr. Moogle.
In the meantime, there'll be Moogles running around at set intervals. Mr.
Moogle invites us over for tea 'nd biscuits. Also, treasure.

When you're done here, the Moogles will have magically understood you're not
there to maim their cute little faces and will just walk around. Yes, they all
say "Kupo!". In the middle treehouse, there's a Moogle Suit you can wear; in
the left-most house there's a locked chest. Wearing the Moogle Suit will cause
the nearby Moogle to get his groove on. Love is bought with merchandise, as in
all cultures. There's an Elven Cloak inside, which in my case is always good
news. If the sheer horror of a perfect Moogle costume lying around in a tree
and you wearing it is lost on you, please remain in your basement forever.
That's some weird Ed Gein shit right there. I mean, what else are a bunch of
Moogles in a forest going to make a Moogle Suit out of? Branches? Sand? Or
MOOGLES?

On the Dancing Dagger; it has a 50 % chance of using !Dance as opposed to the
normal physical attack. These dance effects are affected by gear that boosts
the chance of Sword Dance appearing, so combining the Dancing Dagger with a
Lamia's Tiara will work nicely. Whether it's a good idea to equip the Dancing
Dagger is a toss-up; average damage output improves a little, but it becomes
less dependable. It's a fun thing anyway, and if you're not using Attack
it gives some stat boosts. Also note that the Dancing Dagger will never let the
wielder dance when !Mug or !Focus is used. Official artwork depict the Dancing
Dagger is a weird three-bladed knife in a W shape. 

When you've raided the Moogle Village of its contents, talking to Mr. Moogle
will get you out of there through a long and interesting cutscene.

Fun fact: Krile appears to have the Power of Heart, rounding out the Planeteers
in this game nicely.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.31.1  Castle Bal
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Objet d'Art (#99), Abductor (#270)

  Container contents:
  Angel Robe, Hero Cocktail

  Miscellaneous items:
  Great Sword, Lamia's Harp, Power Armlet (rare Aductor steal), Twin Lance
  (rare Objet d'Art steal)

  Time spells:
  Teleport

  Blue spells:
  Death Claw, Vampire

...Don't push it, kid. Here in Bal, bad jokes like that will get you
PUNished...

Castle Bal's your chance to regroup, come up with a plan versus Exdeath and
take a rest you've truly deserved. It's a tense situation though; monsters
under Exdeath's banner are surrounding the castle and Bal's army is ever
shrinking in size. But let's focus; there's some nice options for you to
exploit. When you're done with the cutscene (props for the translation),
there's a chest containing a Hero Cocktail and a secret passage leading to a
chest containing the Teleport spell the NPC soldier is talking about.

The left-most building in the courtyard takes you to the shops!

Weapon Shop:
Orichalcum Dirk     3400 Gil
War Hammer          6400 Gil
Ashura              5800 Gil
Sleep Blade         5600 Gil
Wind Spear          5400 Gil
Dark Bow            3800 Gil
Dream Harp          1600 Gil
Chain Whip          3300 Gil
  If you declined to buy some weapons in Regole, you can pick them up here! But
they won't be stellar.

Armor Shop:
Golden Shield       3000 Gil
Golden Helm         3500 Gil
Green Beret         2500 Gil
Wizard's Hat        1500 Gil
Golden Armor        4000 Gil
Ninja Suit          3000 Gil
Gaia Gear           2000 Gil
Gauntlet            3000 Gil
  You may think this is the same as before, but 'tis not! The Gauntlet is new.
It's an accessory for Heavy Armor characters; it adds some more Defense than
the Mythril Glove, but it's not that good if you have Elven Mantles to spare.

Item Shop:
Hi-Potion            360 Gil
Potion                40 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil

Ether               1500 Gil
Holy Water           150 Gil
Cottage              600 Gil
Goliath Tonic        110 Gil
Power Drink          110 Gil
Speed Shake          110 Gil
Iron Draft           110 Gil
Hero Cocktail        110 Gil
  This is all identical to the shops in Regole.

Take the stairs up. On the wall here, there's stairs downwards, but they're
blocked from your vision by the tower. Just walk to the right. Take the stairs
all the way down. The NPC here is has some good advice and there's a chest
containing an Angel Robe. No longer "Physician, heal thyself" applies; the
Angel Robe can only be worn by the Chemist (and Freelancers, obviously) and
protects the wearer against the Poison element and status. The Angel Robe also
gives 25 % Magic Evasion, which is actually unrivaled in the entire game as far
as a single piece of equipment is concerned (the Aegis Shield works
differently, mind). The Angel Robe looks like a traditional white nurse's
uniform. 

See the button behind the counter? You can push it from behind to open up a
door in the wall. So THAT's how those merchants always get to those places! If
you stand in between them, they'll forcefully throw you out of their business.
Also, they'll give you a Lamia's Harp, a weapon that deals 3/16 maximum HP to
non-Heavy targets and sets Confuse. You have no business with the thing since
it deals poor damage and you can MT Confuse with Alluring Air, but the thought
is nice.

You can enter the moat surrounding Castle Bal in the bottom-left corner. Enter,
go to the left, ignore the button and go all around the castle. On the far side
of the moat in the bottom-left corner, a Great Sword has fallen in the water.
Grab it. It's super-hidden and no part of your Treasure %. You can return by
pushing the button.

In Basement 1 of the main building, there's a Save Point. Going further into
the depths of Castle Bal will get you in a featureless room with but one point
of interest; the random appearance of enemies.

  70 % Objet d'Art x 2
  30 % Objet d'Art x 5

Objet d'Art enemies are "stone warriors with souls full of malice" as the game
describes them at a later point of the game. They attack physically and cast
the Break spell, but only have the MP to cast it once. When hit by a Gold
Needle, they'll disappear by using Vanish. They've got 3300 HP and are weak to
Lightning-elemental attacks. You can learn Death Claw from them, but only when
you Control one and use an Ether on it to increase its MP. Another big selling
point of these opponents is the Twin Lance. It's a rare steal but quite the
awesome weapon. It's 20 Attack Power better than the Orichalcum Dirk and hits
TWICE every time, actually more or less doubling it's normal damage output. It
can only be used by Thieves, Ninjas and Freelancers though. When used with
!Focus, or !Mug, the Twinlance will hit only once. If you've got the stomach
for the time investment needed, they'll turn a Ninja with Barehanded into a
straight-up murder machine. I'm talking four hits of 700 damage each.

The x 2 formation gives off 4 ABP, the x 5 formation gives off 8 ABP. In
addition, they can be easily defeated by Level 5 Death, which kills them all.
Objet d'Art enemies are often used to train; not for Experience as they hardly
give any, but simply to obtain such top-tier and usually late-game abilities
such as !Doublecast, !Rapid Fire or Dual-Wield. I won't count on you doing this
as it by no means is necessary and it seems wasteful of one's precious time,
but if you want to do it, it does help out tremendously.

On the top floor of the main building, Krile is in distress. The Wind Drake
that helped Galuf rescue Bartz 'nd the lot has overstrained itself in said
mission. Never mind the current political situation (you know, the WAR thing)
or the practical impossibility of sneaking past Exdeath's armies, everybody
agrees on the fact that playing for veterinarian to an admittedly useful drake
takes priority.

As soon as you're done toying around with the flying statues of death, you can
go talk to the soldiers guarding the gates. King Galuf will order them to open
the gates, which they'll do for you. It'll net you a battle with a SINGLE
Abductor, the apparent entirety of Exdeath's stationed demon horde.

The fight versus this guy is hardly worthy of description; he can use Vampire
and Hurricane, so watch out. Vulnerable to Stop and Confuse, not Heavy. You can
Steal a rare Power Armlet if you want one, you'll be able to buy those in a few
minutes. Death Claw is probably your best bet, otherwise send in a Time Mage
to cast Stop and Demi amidst some physical action. The guy has only 2500 HP. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.31.2  En route to Quelb
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Aquathorn (#94), Weresnake (#95), Kornago (#96), Cursed Being (#97)

  Blue spells:
  Pond's Chorus

  Marshlands
  58 % Cursed Being, Kornago x 2
  35 % Weresnake x 2
   6 % Cursed Being x 2, Weresnake, Kornago

  Southern Forests:
  42 % Cursed Being x 2, Weresnake, Kornago
  35 % Kornago x 3
  23 % Cursed Being, Kornago x 2

  Eastern Marshlands:
  35 % Cursed Being, Aquathorn
  35 % Kornago x 3
  30 % Weresnake x 2

  Western Marshlands:
  35 % Aquathorn
  35 % Kornago, Werensnake, Aquathorn
  30 % Aquathorn x 2

I should probaly give a description here...

Aquathorns are conscious, swamp-dwelling plants that attack anything that comes
close for sustenance. They can attack physically and have a 33% shot at using
Slimer, which ensnares a character and slowly dissolves its body. That's just
a creepy way of saying it sets Slow and Sap! When you Catch one, you get to see
it cast a Death spell upon Release. Where does this pure hatred of life
channeled into the purest example of dark arcane arts come from? Mysteries of
an alien world... They absorb Water-elemental attacks and have a weakness to
the Lightning element, befitting of their aquatic nature.

Weresnakes are nothing special, except for the fact they're inherently
Poisoned. You could cure it for them with an Antidote or somesuch, but they'll
still try to kill you.

Kornago toads are just super-delicious, but also quite murderous. They run away
when they have less than 300 HP, which normally wouldn't be a problem since you
could just let them; later on though, you'll want to Catch at least one of
them. They're not Heavy and vulnerable to Paralyze, so Death Claw works like a
charm when trying to obtain one; Stop and Sleep can also disable them. They
will randomly use Pond's Chorus every turn as a stepping stone to their
combined ambition to turn the world into a world of warty hides, long tongues
and edible legs.

It is not stated how or why Cursed Beings are cursed, and if this curse has
anything to do with them walking on their hands. Maybe they're just trying to
turn that frown upside-down? They're unassuming physical footsoldiers, but
don't let a character fall in battle when they're around; they'll use Danse
Macabre to raise him or her as a Zombie. A freaking ZOMBIE, man.

Lightning-elemental attacks clean house versus the Aquathorns and Cursed
Beings, !Gaia's Bottomless Swamp still kicks major ass in the marshlands and
any Blue or Time caster can help in subduing a Kornago enemy for the greater
good.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.31.3  The town of Quelb and Lord Kelger Vlondett
**********************************

  Miscellaneous items:
  Kornago Gourd, Potion x24

  Songs:
  Requiem

It seems we can just pass though the town. We're in a hurry, so let's just get
to that gate and return later when things have quieted down. No such luck; upon
further inspection, the gate is closed. Kelger, leader of Quelb and former
Warrior of Dawn should be able to help us.

Strangely, the entire town appears to be closed. Shops are closed, the Inn is
closed and nobody seems to be around. The only house open to us is the big'un,
but there's nobody there. Enter and leave, and you'll hear a voice stopping
you.

Lord Kelger Vlondett perhaps never was the strongest warrior amidst those of
Dawn, but his fiery spirit knows endurance unheard of, and his lust for
righteousness, though simple in nature, has made him a force of light to be
reckoned with. In his old age he has weakened, but even the slightest fragrance
of a connection to Exdeath prompts Kelger to test the new Light Warriors in the
person of Bartz. His Lupine attack fails to deliver.

Dorgann Klauser, father to Bartz Klauser, turns out to be the one who has
taught Bartz to deflect the alien Lupine attack. Dorgann's name is all too
familiar to both Warriors of Dawn...

When all is said and done, get on the move. The shops here have some excelling
material to offer.

Weapon Shop:
Orichalcum Dirk     3400 Gil
War Hammer          6400 Gil
Ashura              5800 Gil
Sleep Blade         5600 Gil
Wind Spear          5400 Gil
Dark Bow            3800 Gil
Dream Harp          1600 Gil
Chain Whip          3300 Gil

Kodachi             5100 Gil
Killer Bow          5000 Gil
Poison Rod          1500 Gil
Shuriken            2500 Gil
Flame Scroll         200 Gil
Water Scroll         200 Gil
Lightning Scroll     200 Gil
  Most that can be bought here could also be purchased earlier, so I won't be
discussing it. The new Kodachi is useless; it's weaker than the Twin Lance even
if the latter hadn't hit twice, and has no special effects. The Killer Bow has
that 8 % chance to one-hit KO a non-Heavy target, which is nice; if you never
obtained a Killer Bow earlier (could've stolen one from Ghidras), I suggest you
pick one up now. Official artwork for the game depicts the Killer Bow as a 
crossbow, by the way. The Poison Rod is the Rod that boosts your new Bio spells
by 50%. If you plan on using Black Magic in the near future, definitely get
one or two Poison Rods. The Scrolls are also for sale again; Flame Scrolls will
serve you the best in the next dungeon.

Armor Shop:
Golden Shield       3000 Gil
Golden Helm         3500 Gil
Green Beret         2500 Gil
Wizard's Hat        1500 Gil
Golden Armor        4000 Gil
Ninja Suit          3000 Gil
Gaia Gear           2000 Gil
Gauntlet            3000 Gil

Twist Headband      3500 Gil
Power Sash          4500 Gil
Power Armlet        2500 Gil
  Nothing new here but some equipment for Clothes characters. Just buy whatever
you need; both the Twist Headband and Power Sash have some nice stat boost and
are better on defenses than your old gear, so simply upgrade. You already got
a Power Armlet (maybe even two if all went well); you'll want to stick to
Elven Mantles, so disregard its existence.

The Magic Shop sells no new spells, so I won't bother listing them; they're
identical to Regole's selection.

At the Inn, you can get your hands on 'Quelb's finest dishes' which completely
restore you. You'll have to sit at the table for the werewolf offering you this
meal to go get them. He gives you 8 Potions and an after-dinner service for the
first three times. Beware though: every time you order a dish, a sheep grazing
outside will vanish. Oh well, no ewes is good ewes, I always say.

Item Shop:
Hi-Potion            360 Gil
Potion                40 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil

Ether               1500 Gil
Holy Water           150 Gil
Cottage              600 Gil
Goliath Tonic        110 Gil
Power Drink          110 Gil
Speed Shake          110 Gil
Iron Draft           110 Gil
Hero Cocktail        110 Gil
  Wolves are selling items at the Inn, how amusing. You'll be able to see the
Poison status appear a lot in the next dungeon, so unless you plan on bringing
a character capable of casting Poisona, make sure you have a surplus of
Antidotes to un-un-unpoison.

In the top-right corner of the town, three werewolves are a-praying for your
safe return. While their crude and animalistic religious devices are amusing,
one of them teaches you the Requiem Song which is completely worth the slightly
embarrassing rite. Requiem is an MT non-elemental barrier-piercing magical
attack that's over FOUR times as powerful as something like a Fira spell. It
only hurts creatures with an Undead nature, though. In Drakenvale, the two most
dangerous random encounters are Undead, so bringing one or two characters with
the !Sing ability wouldn't be a bad idea. Due to bad stats and poor equipment,
Bards are generally a pain to keep around; Drakenvale is a place where they're
really useful, so now's your chance!

You can mess up their ceremony by standing in front of them, btw. You can
deflect their little routine so that they'll run into walls 'nd stuff, it's
really awesome :P

An old man is searching in a well for a frog. If you go outside to !Catch a
Kornago, you'll make him happy. As you know, Kornagos tend to Flee when they're
weak enough to be caught, but they're not Heavy and vulnerable to Paralyze so
Death Claw is awesome to both weaken and incapacitate them. If you approach the
old man with a Kornago in your 'inventory', he'll offer a bargain; your Kornago
and 10000 Gil for his Kornago Gourd. I'd take it; the Kornago Gourd is a heavy,
heavy jar which occupies an Accessory slot. Rather than 1/8 maximum HP, the bare
minimum to catch a monster with !Catch is 1/2 maximum HP with the Kornago Gourd
equipped. If you don't have the 10000 Gil to fork over, no matter; this well,
this old man and Kornago toads will always be here. It's no part of your
Treasure% either, so no worries there.

When you're done in Quelb, it's time to travel to Drakenvale, where the dragon
grass awaits your arrival.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.31.4  Drakenvale
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Drippy (#100), Lycaon (#101), Bone Dragon (#102), Poison Eagle (#103), Zombie
  Dragon (#104), Golem (#271), Dragon Pod (#272), Dragon Flower (#273), ??? (-)

  Container contents:
  5000 Gil, 7000 Gil, Bone Mail, Cottage, Hypno Crown, Phoenix Down, Wind Slash

  Miscellaneous items:
  Dark Matter (rare Zombie Dragon steal), Dragon Fang (guaranteed Zombie Dragon
  drop), Elixir (guaranteed Dragon Pod drop), Hayate Bow (rare Poison Eagle
  steal), Golem (guaranteed Golem drop)

  Summon spells:
  Golem

  Blue spells:
  Magic Hammer

  Caves:
  35 % Zombie Dragon
  42 % Zombie Dragon, Poison Eagle, Drippy
  23 % Bone Dragon x 2

  First two slopes:
  35 % Drippy x 2
  35 % Lycaon
  23 % ??? --> Lycan x 5
   6 % Lycaon x 5

  Bridge slope:
  35 % Bone Dragon, Drippy x 2
  35 % Poison Eagle x 2
  23 % ??? --> Lycan x 5
   6 % Lycaon x 5

  Bone Mail slope:
  35 % Golem, Bone Dragon, Zombie Dragon --> Lycan x 5
  35 % Poison Eagle, Drippy
  23 % ??? --> Lycan x 5
   6 % Lycaon

  Dragon grass slope:
  35 % Golem, Bone Dragon, Zombie Dragon --> Lycaon x 5
  35 % Bone Dragon, Poison Eagle, Lycaon x 2
  23 % Bone Dragon x 2
   6 % Lycaon

Drakenvale is home to many mysterious creatures; undead dragons are but a grim
memory of Drakenvale's former glory as the roost of the Wind Drake populace,
its critters are aggressive but never a picture of health and among the slopes
of Drakenvale climbs a monster of mud and stone, the Golem. It is a place of no
return, rugged cliffs once dominated by a dragon population now in decline. And
somewhere, possibly, grows the dragon grass...

??? is an odd encounter you won't be able to do anything with; this is the
Golem we'll truly meet later. For now, he simply recognizes you as a threat
(what, like you wouldn't mindlessly attack him), get in a physical attack and
immediately Flee.

Drippies are Pao palette swaps. They're like pigmy Berserkers, I dunno. You can
Control them into using Magic Hammer on a character with Learning if you didn't
pick the attack up from Byblos. They may even use it normally on you, aside
from normal physical attacks and !Axe, which is just a bit more powerful.
They're little threat and not that interesting. They're weak to Poison-
elemental attacks.

Lycaon attack in great numbers. They're weak to Fire-elemental attacks, so Fire
Scrolls and Ifrit's Inferno both help clear them out. They may drop Holy Water,
but that's about it.

Bone Dragons are one of the two more formidable opponents Drakenvale houses.
Undead Dragons, they're weak to Fire-elemental attacks and may use Bone, an
attack that's entirely like Hurricane; it drops a single character's HP to a
single digit. Their !Tail sets Paralyze when they attack with it, but there's
nothing you can do about that. They're not that hard to defeat; Requiem is a
very potent weapon when facing these things, as are attacks such as Gravity and
Missile.

Poison Eagles have only 100 HP, but evade a lot of attacks. Anything that's not
normally blockable will help, such as spells, !Aim and Ninja Scrolls. They will
swoop down and set Poison with their !Claw special. You can rarely steal a
Hayate Bow from them; they have no common steal so that's nice. Goblin Punch
and !Aim can help target the elusive birds of prey; they can't evade Bows and
Whips either, so Beastmasters and archers are in luck.

The Hayate Bow is actually really powerful at this stage of the game; it's a
shame it had to go toe-to-toe with the Twin Lance surfacing as an option for
Clothes characters, as that's a battle it loses. It has a 25 % of performing
!Rapid Fire, which basically makes the Hayate Bow attack four times in a row at
half strength while disregarding the opponent's Defense. It's also unblockable.
Basically, for a little randomness you get more power.

Zombie Dragons are the hardest enemies you face here; they are Undead Dragons
like Bone Dragons yet more sturdy; they have 4590 HP, which is a lot. Next to
physical attacks, Zombie Dragons may use Poison Breath if the battle drags on
(if it's allowed to take three turns, actually), so try to prevent that. Check
your Chemists totally ignore damage done by Poison Breath, by the way. Crank
that Angel Robe. Zombie Dragons are not Heavy, so you could take advantage of
that; they are vulnerable to Paralyze and Sleep, so that stops them; Requiem
deals a lot of damage, as do Fire-elemental attacks. They have a rare Dark
Matter for you to steal, and no common item. Paired with a guaranteed Dragon
Fang drop every time you kill one, facing Zombie Dragons is a Mix user's
slightly erotic dream.

On the whole, there are quite a few powerful attacking methods you can employ
here. Requiem will deal around 2000 damage to the Bone and Zombie Dragons; give
a Bard a Mage's Magic Power to increase damage done (or set !Sing to a Job with
much magical aptitude). A Ninja with two Twin Lances can deal around 2500
damage when all four hits connect, using !Gaia on the slopes may result into
Cave-In which is extremely powerful. The Hayate Bow is fun to sling between
1000 and 2000 damage from the Back Row. You can't really go wrong, though take
into account Drakenvale is simply a very handy place to level or even master
the Bard Job in; in the future !Sing is an awesome ability while Bards are a
bad idea due to low HP, all-round horrible stats and poor equipment options.
Berserkers are not very handy, since they may mess up your encounter with
Golem and the Dragons. 

A note on every ??? formation and formations including the Golem opponent: when
property defeating a Golem, Bone Dragon, Zombie Dragon formation all these
formations will be replaced by Lycaon x 5.

It's a straight path through Drakenvale for the most part. Just follow the
trail! There's a small grotto containing a chest with 5000 Gil in it when you
first enter Drakenvale; loot it and press on on the slopes. You'll go past a
chest containing a Cottage before you get to a big bridge. Cross it, it's what
it was made for. There's a small cavern pathway before you come across a slope
with bones scattered around the place. There are two items of interest here; a
Bone Mail hidden in the bones just beneath the second dragon skull you see, and
the illustrous Golem, Bone Dragon, Zombie Dragon monster formation.

The Bone Mail falls in the 'Clothes' category, and it gives vastly superior
Defense and Magic Defense to anything you have at the moment. It allows the
wearer to absorb Poison-elemental attacks and protects against the Poison,
Darkness, Old, Confuse and Berserk status ailments. This, however, comes at a
great cost. A character wearing the Bone Mail becomes Undead in every sense of
the word; what would work on Undead monsters now works on Bone Mail wearers.
Spells such as Cura and Nightingale deal damage rather than heal, Death spells
and Death Potions instantly restore a Bone Mail wearer to full health and
revival items kill one instantly. In addition, when a Bone Mail character
actually dies due to HP loss, there is NO way to revive him or her since
revival items stopped working. To make the picture complete, Bone Mail wearers
obtain some properties the game designers felt were more or less inherent to
Undead creatures; a characters wearing the Bone Mail will take double damage
from Fire- and Holy-elemental attacks and Regen can't be set.

It's difficult to say if the Bone Mail is fit to replace 'normal' equipment. In
any normal fight where you're not planning on healing by any means next to the
Blue White Wind spell, the Bone Mail will simply grant you extreme defense,
additional magic defense and a whole slew of status immunities. However, in
boss fights you'll want to be able to cure, and a disability to revive
one-fourth of your cast is a bad thing. Personally speaking, I know you'll get
by fine without the Bone Mail and I'm just annoyed to see a random Nightingale
hurt a character, but there are many who disagree with that statement and the
Bone Mail will from now on ALWAYS be equipped by Optimum so you'll have to
decide for yourself.

When you've found the Bone Mail, you can see a cave. Enter the opening to find
yourself in a room with a skull button you can't reach and something that
looks like a door you can't open. Go stand between that door and the skull
button and the 'door' and take two steps to the right to tumble down a hole!
Geomancers will trigger the trap without falling, but you'll want to go down
that hole. Open the chest, enter the door, push the skull button, go back and
leave the other way and exit. There is now a slope to continue your journey
through Drakenvale.

But first, that Golem battle.

Golem
Level: 3, HP: 2500, MP: 1000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0, Magic Evasion: 0
Steal: Gold Needle (common and rare)
Win: Golem (always)
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk,
  Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: -

Bone Dragon
Level: 37, HP: 3000, MP:500
Defense: 40, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Absorbs: Poison
Creature: Heavy, Dragon, Undead
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Darkness, Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop,
  Regen
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Bone

Zombie Dragon
Level: 37, HP: 4000, MP: 1000
Defense: 20, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Absorbs: Poison
Weakness: Fire
Creature: Heavy, Dragon, Undead
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Darkness, Old, Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop,
  Regen
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Vampire, Poison Breath

This is a strange battle; note that all three monsters are different from the
ones you saw earlier; the two Dragons are Heavy, have no items on them, the
Bone Dragon has a different special technique (the generic !Critical Attack
rather than !Tail, and it doesn't set Paralyze either) and the Zombie Dragon is
the only Zombie Dragon ever that could use Vampire.

Here's the deal. Even though Golem is a non-human creature like the rest of
Drakenvale's inhabitants, that doesn't mean that sometimes, just sometimes,
ugly humanoids have feelings too. Anyway, these undead dragons are attacking
Golem as soon as you find them, and Golem asks for your help. If you manage to
kill them before Golem dies, he'll be grateful as a fistful of nearly-drowned
kittens and drop you the 'Golem' item, which you can use to teach your
Summoners how to utilize Golem's mighty protective prowess. If you fail,
however, you'll just have to try again; he'll still randomly appear as the ???
creature and versus the two dragons.

Golem's biggest enemies are Bone Dragon's Bone (which reduces his 2500 HP to a
single digit, and it CAN work), Zombie Dragon's Vampire which it may use every
third turn, and your random or MT attacks. Lay off the !Gaia; you don't want a
Cave-in raining down. Don't ever bring a Berserker in this fight. Focus attacks
on the dragons. It might even be a good idea to protect Golem; the Protect and
Blink spells or a Dragon Kiss potion (Mix a Dragon Fang with a Maiden's Kiss)
protect respectively against physical attacks sent his way and Bone (Dragon
Kiss gives Golem a Heavy nature, so Bone will never connect). Flash is a great
Blue spell to use; it may blind all three, causing the Dragon's attacks to miss
often.

Requiem is THE best attack to use in this battle as it will deal massive damage
to both dragons but won't hit Golem. As long as you've got the ability to use
Songs, Romeo's Balled sets Stop on both dragons as well. The Bone Dragon is
vulnerable to Petrify, so you might want to take advantage of that fact. These
dragons are tougher than usual, having more HP and defenses; they shouldn't be
able to kill Golem before you can save him, though. You can Confuse all three
of them with Alluring Air; but since confused opponents will start attacking
each other, all you'll accomplish is that the Dragons will randomly attack each
other in addition to attacking Golem randomly. Note that unlike most special
battles, you can both Catch and Control these two Dragons to remove them as a
threat from the battlefield.

If Golem falls, the Dragons will take a turn to turn around and will start
attacking you; the Zombie Dragon will now start to use Poison Breath, and the
Bone Dragon will use Bone much more often. If you kill them now, no worries;
you can meet the Golem + two undead Dragon formation again, as if nothing even
happened and you never failed in the first place. If at first you don't
succeed, it never happened!

Stop the Dragons, Protect or possibly heal the Golem, and you should have
little trouble. Kill the Zombie Dragon ASAP, as Vampire can be extremely lethal
to Golem.

So what does the one-armed bandit do? His attack is called Earthen Wall and it
protects you from every physical attack sent your way. Golem's hand of mud and
clay shoots forth from the earth to absorb physical attacks, but only stops
those coming from the enemy. However, Golem can only take so much punishment
before the effects of Earthen Wall wear off again; the amount of HP damage
Golem can take before disintegrating equals (the summoner's level + 20) * 50.
You can put up Golem's Earthen Wall when it has been taken down, but you can't
'refresh' the thing; if Earthen Wall is still in effect, summoning Golem will
do nothing.

Continue!

Enter the next cave, and go left to find two chests containing the Wind Slash
Katana and the Hypno Crown. The Wind Slash has a 12 % chance of performing a
Gale Cut attack instead of a normal physical strike and boosts Wind-elemental
attacks (!Blue, !Gaia and the Wind Slash's own Gale Cut attack contain this
element). The Hypno Crown is another heavy piece of equipment (how slow do we 
want our Beastmasters to be?) which about doubles the chances of the !Control 
ability to work. Every Job can equip it. Note that both items are one-of-a-
kind in this game.

Trace back your steps and take the other path. It takes you past a chest with a
Phoenix Down and an entry to a Save Point. Use it and take the other exit.
Here's one final slope (the Golem, Bone Dragon, Zombie Dragon formation appears
here as well, so if you haven't found Golem now's the time) to take you to the
purpose of your visit to Drakenvale; the dragon grass. If you're looking for
some kind of preparation and you're traveling with a Beastmaster, try catching
a Bone Dragon; it's Bone attack will serve us well in the upcoming battle.

You've got to be kidding me.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.31.5  The fight with Dragon Pod
**********************************

"Grass isn't supposed to attack people!"

The last Wind Drake of Lenna's world is still alive as far as we know, but the
last Wind Drake of Galuf's world is dying as we speak. Things aren't looking
too hot for the Wind Drake race as a whole, I'd say, and that's partly because
of this vile thing; the dragon grass mutated. Maybe this is what Darwin meant,
but that doesn't make it a useful thing to have happened. We still need the
dragon grass no matter how big and powerful it grows, so let's see if we can
cut down this thorned rose.

Dragon Pod
Level: 33, HP: 12000, MP: 1000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 40
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Win: Elixir (always)
Creature: Humanoid
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Stop, Slow
Attacks: -

Dragon Flower (all five)
Level: 31/33/35, HP: 100, MP: 1000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 50
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 30%
Win: Phoenix Down (rare)
Special Technique: varies
Special Technique Effect: varies
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Toad, Mini, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep,
  Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: !Silver Powder / !Poison Powder / !Darkness Powder /
  !Paralyze Powder / !Confuse Powder

It's a silly battle, trust me. Dragon Pod does nothing but sit there and remain
fairly sturdy what with its 12000 HP and soaring Magic Defense. In the
meantime, every turn it takes it summons Dragon Flowers. These little things
attack physically with their damaging special techniques, and are arranged
thusly:


5          1
 4   3   2


1: Silver Powder: Unblockable, ignores Defense, sets Old
2: Poison Powder: Unblockable, ignores Defense, sets Poison
3: Darkness Powder: Unblockable, ignores Defense, sets Darkness
4: Paralyze Powder: Unblockable, ignores Defense, sets Paralyze
5: Confuse Powder: Unblockable, ignores Defense, sets Confuse

All Dragon Flowers have a mere 100 HP, so any attack will kill them; with their
amazing Magic Defense though, magical attacks will have to hit hard to do
anything besides 0 damage. When you have to manually MT the spell, it's
unlikely it'll do anything. Ifrit and its brethren will do little damage as
well; Titan manages nicely, though, especially when boosted by Gaia Gear. !Kick
is the supreme way of dealing with the Dragon Flowers; it takes no MP, kills
everything that it hits and hits always, since Dragon Flowers have no Evasion.

Defensive options a-plenty, though. A Bone Mail character will only take
effects from !Paralyze Powder and Golem's Earthen Wall will stop all these
attacks completely. Setting Berserk on the Dragon Pod (either by Mixing a Kiss
of Blessing or Bacchus' Cider) causes the Dragon Pod to start attacking but will
stop him from resurrecting the Dragon Flowers constantly. !Recover, the
Chemist's third action ability, cures all the status ailments that can be set
by the Dragon Flowers from the entire team for no MP cost. I always struggled
to find an actual use for the Chemist's later action abilities, so if there
ever was one, this is it...

The Dragon Pod, though having a lot of HP and Magic Defense, lacks a Heavy
Nature so there are a LOT of things to cripple this thing quickly. The Killer
Bow's special effect, a Death Potion (Phoenix Down + Dark Matter), the Blue
spells Missile and Death Claw, it all works. If you want to kill this thing
with Harps, the Lamia Harp deals 32.5% current HP damage to it. When you
Release a Bone Dragon you could Catch right here in Drakenvale, its Bone attack
will drop Dragon Pod's HP to a single digit. Releasing an Aquathorn will have it
cast Death, which may kill Dragon Pod instantly as well. After a Dark Spark, 
the Dragon Pod becomes vulnerable to Level 4 Graviga... hey, a boss battle 
use for Level 4 Graviga! 

Simply summon Golem at the start and you're pretty much set, all the rest is
just especially quick. You get an Elixir for your troubles.

Random note: according to the game data, both the Dragon Pod and Dragon Flowers
would be under the effects of Regen. This is because plants absorb nutrients
from the ground, causing them to regrow leaves in a matter of seconds. But
they're not under the effects of Regen, due to a bug.

If you need anymore ABP or Dragon Fangs, you can hike back down; the Time spell
Teleport instantly takes you to the foot of Drakenvale as well, but walking back
means more Dragon Fangs for you. Now, travel all the way back to Castle Bal.
There's nothing of interest in Quelb. You'll have to take a detour through the
moat of Castle Bal to actually enter, but that's a quick thing. Everybody needs
to break into his own house every now and then, right?

Right?

If you're walking back to Bal Castle, and you feel like Catching an Aquathorn
since they cast Death upon release and the next boss is vulnerable to that
status ailment, then by all means grab one. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.32.1  Ghido the Sage and Xezat Matias Surgate
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Cure Beast (#115), Land Turtle (#116)

  Container contents:
  5000 Gil

  Time spells:
  Float

  Songs:
  Swift Song
  
Even when rushing upstairs to get the Dragon Grass to the Wind Drake you'll
hear the rustle of the NPC's; Krile's not feeling too well. Also, we hear that
King Xezat Surage has opened an attack on one of the four Barrier Towers that
upholds the barrier protecting Castle Exdeath; we'll check later. Now's the
time to heal the Wind Drake and head Krile's call; visit Ghido the Sage.

As far as the dragon grass feeding procedure goes: everybody's stupid in the
head but in the end it's all right so no biggie. Geez-oh-pete!

Now that you have a wind drake to ride, you can fly all over the world. The
features you can actually access are limited though. If you want to take a look
at what this dark world has to offer, here's a map:

http://www.cavesofnarshe.com/ff5/map.php?world=second

Take the Wind Drake to the cave to the north-east of Drakenvale. You can scout
around the Overworld Map (no new monsters) but as soon as you enter the cave
itself, Exdeath decides it hasn't been quite enough of a bastard and submerges
the entire island. Oh well. We could travel back to Castle Bal, but Krile's
still telling us Ghido is calling. Disregard that, let's go find Xezat and see
if we can be of any help there.

To the west of what once was Ghido's Cave lies Surgate Castle.

  Around Surgate Castle, several new enemies appear. Grasslands:
  35 % Land Turtle
  35 % Cure Beast, Land Turtle x 2
  30 % Cure Beast x 4

Cure Beasts are crazy. They look after everything that's not them; every even
turn, they'll cast Cura on every target but themselves. They're not too
powerful when it comes to restorative magic though, so no worries. They rarely
drop Elixirs, which is something to look forward to. They're altruists all
around, these bunnies.

Land Turtles are your source of Turtle Shells in this world, which is nice to
know if you're employing the Mix outcome of the Succubus Kiss. They're weak to
Ice-elemental attacks like all lizards, and will always drop the lusted-after
Turtle Shells. They merely attack physically, so no worries there.

The enemies really aren't that interesting. Enter Surgate Castle. Nor the gates
nor the guards are being very responsive but by pressing the button (isn't it
the purpose of a castle to keep people OUT?) the gates open. Inside, there's
magical fun and adventure! Everything starts in the Throne Room. Seems like
King Xezat is a bachelor.

The stairs in the top-left corner take you outside, on the walls. There's only
one way to go, past some scholars. They've got an ancient book called the
Sealed Tome, but half of it is missing. In the Library of the Ancients, there
was a nameless book of which only half was present; maybe there's a connection?
Alas, it doesn't matter. Downstairs is a cranky librarian (comes with the job,
I suppose). There are three books and many more shelves. The books:

Weird Ronka
Register of Monsters
Forbidden Book

A-C     D-F     G-H
I-K     L-N     O-Q     R-S
T-V     W-X     Y-Z     *nothing*

When not carrying around a book, Bartz will look for an ass magazine in the
left part of the A-C shelf. Oh well, nobody's blaming you; one of your girls
dresses like a man and the other wouldn't recognize an ass if she sat on one.
Anyway, put the three books where they belong and the librarian will open up a
new passage. If you screw up, you can leave the room and re-enter to see them
scattered around again.

In this room, a book gives you the tip of combining !Lance with a mage. I never
found this very useful as MP isn't that much of a problem and I'd rather go
with more diversity (!Mix can drain MP just fine, thank you), but it never was
my place to disagree with in-game information. Also, books are stupid and only
sissies read them. Continue to a room with a lot of stuff. One of the stuff is
a chest containing 5000 Gil. Leave through the door and cross the courtyard to
find another door leading to another room of useless junk and a single chest,
this one containing the Float spell, ever-so-useful for avoiding Earth-elemental
attacks. Trace your steps back to the Throne Room.

The bottom-left stairway takes you to Xezat's room, where a book containing the
Swift Song lies. An odd location to say the least; if there is one place where
you'd rather not be too swift, it's the bedroom... You'll learn it upon
inspection. The Swift Song slowly increases your Agility while your Bard is
singing; he or she will stop singing when struck by a physical attack. Note
that Agility is used when determining damage from !Throw (not the Scrolls), the
Diamond Bell and Tinklebell and the Chicken Knife, so those will get a damage
boost.

The final stairway takes you down to the shops and Inn of Castle Surgate.

Weapon Shop:
Great Sword         3400 Gil
Heavy Lance         6400 Gil
Osafune             5800 Gil
Poison Axe          5600 Gil
  You haven't got any Heavy Lances yet, but the Javelin you might have stolen
from the Sand Bears in the Desert of Streaming Sands is a tad stronger and
equally non-elemental. The Poison Axe is a non-elemental Axe stronger than the
Death Sickle but weaker than the Gaia Hammer; it has a 67% chance of finishing
a physical attack with the Poison spell; not what a Berserker is generally
about, status ailments. The Osafune's simply the strongest Katana to date, it's
not as funky as the Wind Slash, though. Buy whatever you think you need; none
of these weapons are all too impressive or useless.

The Armor Shop sells no new items, and the Magic Shop sells no new spells.

When you're done, sleep at the Inn and take the Wind Drake to Xezat's fleet.
Take a look at the World Map. See the south-eastern continent? This is the one
where Castle Exdeath is found. To the east of this continent, Xezat has began
his assault, as the continent is said to be relatively unprotected from that
side. Fly there. There are fourteen ships, but only one of them is large enough
for the Wind Drake to land on.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.32.2  Surgate Fleet; the third fight with Gilgamesh
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Gobbledygook (#105), Gilgamesh (#274), Enkidu (#275)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Genji Gloves (common Gilgamesh steal)

  Blue spells:
  Goblin Punch, Missile, Death Claw, Aera, Vampire

The reunion between Xezat and Galuf is warm, but the situation is grim. Even
though Xezat's attack is a bold one, Exdeath's situation is stable and strong
and all the goodwill and rest in the world isn't enough to help out in this
battle. Xezat offers the quarters of his flagship, and you should definitely
take him up on his offer. Once you rest (you could still take the Wind Drake and
travel around this world), you'll be rudely awakened by an attacking force.
Seems the army of Exdeath still has enough steam left after the fights versus
both Bal and Quelb.

Talk to Xezat to get the party started.

There's a total of three Gobbledygook monsters running around Xezat's flagship
and one waiting for you at the nose of the ship. Fighting them isn't all that
helpful, but I suppose it's nice versus Xezat's soldiers or something. They'll
attack physically and may randomly use Goblin Punch; they're vulnerable to all
status ailments, including such gems as Mini and Toad. When you've defeated the
Gobbledygook standing still, you'll get a cutscene where Xezat defeats one of
his own but gets slapped around by the monster called Enkidu. Back to you,
Freddy. The path is open for you to face Gilgamesh for a third time. Make sure
you're able to steal, as a unique item is about to be presented to you.

Gilgamesh
Level: 31, HP: 8888, MP: 888
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Genji Gloves (common)
Win: Golden Shield (always)
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack, Death Claw, Missile

Enkidu
Level: 29, HP: 4000, MP: 1000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 20%
Steal: Green Beret (common)
Nullifies: Earth
Status: Float
Creature: Humanoid
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack, Aera, Missile, Wind Slash, Web, Dischord,
  Vampire, White Wind

"Ahhh...blue, blue skies and the rolling sea! It's days like this that get you
high on life! But you, sirs, are harshing my buzz!"

This is a fairly straight-forward battle. Gilgamesh does his thing; all of his
attacks randomly pop up. When he hits 6000 HP, his next action will consist of
summoning Enkidu, his legendary companion who will promptly restore him with
White Wind. At that point, the battle becomes a tad more serious as there's now
two targets attacking and casting spells, but there shouldn't be that much
trouble. Enkidu doesn't have that much on an AI script either; all of his
attacks are random as well. Note that he's Floating and thus nullifies Gaia
Hammer's Earthquake attacks and Titan's Gaia's Wrath; in a shocking turn of
events, Enkidu CAN evade Aerial attacks even though he's Floating; with 20%
Evasion rate, they'll still land most of the time, though.

"I see you're leisurely as ever, faithful sidekick!"

"The old man gave me some trouble."

"Ho? Let's return the trouble...and make it double! Come on!"

Golem's Earthen Wall helps out nicely in this battle. Make sure to Steal one of
the things Gilgamesh is famous for within the game; the first piece of Genji
Equipment. The Genji Gloves are unique insofar you won't get a second pair of
them; ev4r. The Genji Gloves grant superior Defense and protect against the
Toad and Paralyze status ailments. Still not superior to the Elven Mantle in my
book, but you never did find more than three at this point so there's still
some poor heavily armored sap left with a Gauntlet or something silly like
that.

Oh yeah, Gilgamesh. Pound on him. You can set Slow on both Gilgamesh and Enkidu
to lessen their amount of attacks. You can actually successfully Control
Enkidu! This way, he can use a physical attack and Hurricane, which doesn't
work on Gilgamesh but does work on Enkidu himself. You can have Enkidu
Hurricane himself and add a second attack to get rid of the beast-man.

Boosted Bio spells and Titan's Gaia's Wrath (also boosted) are pretty much your
most potent magical attacks. If you have a Ninja with two Twin Lances, he'll be
unrivaled in damage output. Heavy Armor characters get the short end of the
stick here; they'll need to be Berserkers with the Two-Handed ability to deal
enough damage (though it'll surpass all other attacks if it gets the maximum
power in), but every time Earthquake appears it'll be a fairly weak attack
which won't even hit Enkidu. Without Twin Lances, your Clothes characters won't
be that awesome; you'll want to resort to the Hayate Bow, Barehanded or !Throw.

If you kill Enkidu before Gilgamesh, the latter will give a little speech
before ending the battle.

"Enkidu! Faithful sidekick! I trust you can take care of the rest! Faithful
sidekick? ...Enkidu? Hey! Sidekicks are NOT to ditch the hero!"

You can use a combination of Dark Spark (once) and Level 5 Death to kill
Gilgamesh before Enkidu manages to arrive in the first place, which the game
never anticipated; Gilgamesh' sprite will be gone, but his voice will appear
and give the above "Enkidu! Faithful sidekick!" speech to and about nobody in
particular. Fun stuff, but you lose out on the Enkidu Bestiary entry if that's
something you care about. Releasing an Aquathorn, Mixing a Death Potion,
using the Killer Bow and having it trigger the instant-kill or having a Death
Sickle pull off its random Death spell also work here. Finally, the Berserk
status prevents Gilgamesh from summoning Enkidu at all; !Mix a Holy Water with
a Turtle Shell to create a Bacchus' Cider, and throw the fizzy drink at the
painted face of Gilgamesh to inflict the status. It also works on Enkidu if
you start brewing the cocktail after Enkidu appears. 

At the end of the fight it almost looks like Gilgamesh gains the upper hand,
but the Wind Drake and Xezat combine efforts to help you out of your pickle.
It's time for a counter-attack on one of the barrier towers; now that we know
Exdeath is aware of our location, there's no day like Today. You can rest if
you want to. When you're done, the left room in the flagship's interior is
where Xezat is waiting for you.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.32.3  Xezat of Ice; the barrier tower
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Neon (#106), Magnetite (#107), Reflect Knight (#108), Traveler (#109), Level
  Tricker (#110), Gravitator (#111), Ziggurat Gigas (#112), Red Dragon (#133),
  Yellow Dragon (#134), Atomos (#276)

  Container contents:
  9000 Gil, 18000 Gil, Blood Sword, Gold Hairpin

  Miscellaneous items:
  Reflect Ring (rare drop from Reflect Knight), Partisan (rare steal from
  Zigguart Gigas), Coral Ring (rare drop from Yellow Dragon), Flame Ring (rare
  steal from Red Dragon), Dark Matter (guaranteed Atomos drop)

  Blue spells:
  Flash, Time Slip, Level 2 Old, Level 3 Flare, Level 4 Graviga, Level 5 Death,
  Off-Guard

  Ground floor, 2nd Floor:
  35 % Neon
  35 % Traveler, Neon x 2
  23 % Reflect Knight
   6 % Traveler, Reflect Knight, Magnetite

Note: since the Barrier Tower is such a vertical challenge, its contents are
best listed in a floor-by-floor fashion. I will give encounters and monster
descriptions as they become relevant.

I've always found this area one of the more challenging locations the games
offers; it's not so much that the monsters are difficult, it's just that
there's no all-round way of dealing strong damage to all opponents. Titan is
powerful but doesn't hit Travelers, Ziggurat Gigas' and Magnetites. Twin Lances
are powerful ST damage dealers but sometimes miss. Reflect Knights take little
damage from physical attacks and reflect magical ones. Bleh. Hey, at least
there's a lot to find and learn here.

The plan here is simple. The barrier tower itself, obviously, is also protected
by a barrier. Not a magical one though; an electric barrier. Xezat attacks the
generator to lift the electric barrier and expose the antenna; when that
happens, you destroy it. In the meantime, you can keep in contact through the
Whisperweed. Now, Xezat takes off; you can return to the submarine at any given
time if you so please (you get back to the flagship where you can find the Wind
Drake, but there's really no reason for you to do so).

Onto the monsters!

Neons are silly. They respond to physical attacks with the Flash spell, so
don't. They don't have an elemental weakness, but Titan has little problems
with them and they don't have a lot of HP regardless. They're NOT weak to Ice-
or Wind-elemental elemental attacks, mind, unlike the Crew Dust you faced in the
Fire-Powered Ship.

Magnetite are agile little bastards that use the Magnet attack to pull any
character into the Front Row. They're not too dangerous but just damn difficult
to dispatch. They nullify Earth-elemental attacks so Titan's a no-go. They're
weak to Lightning-elemental attacks; Ramuh's boosted Judgment Bolt works like
a charm, as do Lightning Scrolls.

Reflect Knights are annoying; they're quite sturdy on the Defense and have an
inherent Reflect ability. Gaia's Wrath is the key to their defeat. Other
magical attacks that ignore Reflect (Succubus Kiss, Judgment Bolt, Aqua
Breath) also work. Note that Comet and Drain ignore the Reflect status as well.
They rarely drop Reflect Rings, which are grand to pick up. I suggest you get
four of 'em if you can be bothered; in many challenges, getting four Reflect
Rings is a must.

Travelers are silly witches that float over Gaia's Wrath like it's nothing.
They randomly use Time Slip, an ST attack which sets Old and Sleep on a
target. Your Blue Mages can learn this attack; you could wait for a lucky hit
from Traveler's random AI script or simply Control one. They rarely drop Dream
Harps: AWESOME (kidding).

The best thing about boosting Earth-elemental attacks? It's done by robes! So
you can boost Gaia's Wrath AND Ramuh's Judgment Bolt. You should do just that.
Whenever Magnetites appear, summon Ramuh to kill them off, it's really the best
thing to do about them. Gaia's Wrath to deal with Reflect Knights, Neon
thingies and Level Trickers you'll see later. All the rest you'll have to do
with physicals. It's not that hard, just takes a little longer than you're used
to.

The second floor houses a Save Point. Continue up. There are two chests here;
one in your path and one you'll have to go around for. The latter contains a
Blood Sword but is protected by either a single Red Dragon or two Yellow
Dragons, both of which are powerful enough to give specific strategies for.

I'd personally go for the Red Dragon in order to learn Level 3 Flare and get a
guaranteed Flame Ring. Make sure one of your characters' levels is divisible by
3, otherwise trying to learn Level 3 Flare will be a wasted effort. You can use
Dark Spark and/or !Mix potions that raise level to manipulate a target's level
into becoming divisible by 3. Also note that you can run from these battles; you
won't get the item from the chest, but you CAN steal items, run and fight the
enemy again. This means unlimited Flame Rings if you so desire! You'll be
forced to shoot for a Chicken Knife, but the thing's more powerful anyway :/
Before you open the chest, make sure you're fully healed as Red Dragon can open
with an Atomic Ray attack before you even get to move; it can deal up to 650
damage to all characters, and double that to a Bone Mail enthusiast.

Red Dragon
Level: 30, HP: 7500, MP: 1000
Defense: 12, Magic Defense: 8
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 5%
Steal: Flame Ring (rare), Hi-Potion (common)
Win: Elixir (rare)
Absorbs: Fire
Weakness: Ice, Earth, Water
Creature: Dragon, Undead, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Death, Poison, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop,
  Regen
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Atomic Ray

Red Dragon: Not only is the Red Dragon a formidable foe, you'll also want to
learn Level 3 Flare from it and probably want to obtain a Flame Ring, meaning
you'll have to get in there with !Mix, !Control and Learning for Level 3 Flare
and !Time and !Steal for the Flame Ring. The Red Dragon can use Atomic Ray to
do anywhere between 400 and 600 damage (around 1200 to a Bone Mail character)
to all targets. It's got a lot of HP and its physicals are brutal. It's Undead,
so the Requiem is very powerful, and it's weak to Ice-, Water- AND
Earth-elemental attacks so Blizzara Spellblade effects, Gaia's Wrath and the
Gaia Hammer all deliver a lot of damage. You can Stop them as well. Control the
Red Dragon. Steal and cast Return until you've got the Flame Ring you want. Now,
we'll want to learn Level 3 Flare. It will need to bounce back onto a Learning
character from a Reflect barrier, which we can only set at this stage of the
game by the Mix outcome Dragon Defense (Phoenix Down + Dragon Fang), or
!Release a Neon and have it use Reflect on a character with a Reflect Ring,
thus setting Reflect on the Red Dragon. When Reflect is set on the Red Dragon,
have it cast Level 3 Flare and revive the fallen. You may want to use !Jump or
!Hide to have some character(s) survive if all characters could be hit by the
attack; dealing over 2200 damage, it WILL kill.

Yellow Dragon x2
Level: 38, HP: 8500, MP: 1000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 5
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Thunder Rod (rare), Ether (common)
Win: Coral Ring (rare)
Absorbs: Lightning
Creature: Dragon
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Death, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Lightning

Yellow Dragons: They're easier for three reasons; they're not Undead, so the
Death Sickle can dispatch them. They're not Heavy, so Missile, Gravity and
Death Claw all work. Also, you don't really want anything from them but death,
so you don't need to fiddle around. You'll definitely want to bring Control
into the battle. Romeo's Ballad can Stop both, which is very helpful. When
Controlled, they can use Hurricane on one and other (which works). You'll want
to work fast with Yellow Dragons; their successive Lightning attacks are very,
very nasty. They'll use Lightning when Released too, so you'll want to Catch
one or both for the boss at the end of the tower. You're lucky if you can take
a Coral Ring from this fight as a rare drop, but don't count on it.

The Blood Sword is a Knightsword that drains HP, but it has an abysmal Hit
Rate (25 %). Knightswords can only be equipped by Knights, if you must know. In
addition, the damage formula used by the Blood Sword is not the normal Sword
damage formula which depends on your Strength and the target's Defense, but
it's the same one used by a normal Drain spell; the damage done by the Blood
Sword depends on the wielder's Magic Power and the target's Magic Defense. In
addition, it ignores Row! You could set a Mage's Magic Power to the Knight for
increased damage, but then you'd have no way of making it hit often. You can
combine it with !Aim to make in unblockable, which allows your Knight to
restore around 500 HP every attack. !Rapid Fire also makes the blade get a
perfect hit rate and unlike normal weapons the damage done isn't halved per
strike! I'm not counting on you having the ability yet. Since the Blood Sword's
listed Battle Power is quite impressive, it makes for a great Goblin Punch
sword; the Blood Sword's boost to Magic Power will come in handy for those with
a Blue spelllist. Mainly, the Blood Sword is just a novelty weapon.

The Flame Ring makes the wearer absorb Fire-elemental attacks, nullify Ice-
elemental ones and take double damage from Water-elemental attacks. They grant
superior Magic Defense than everything you have at this point and even superior
Defense to the sissy Power Armlets your Mages were stuck with when it came to
Defense. Flame Ring versus Elven Mantle is a tough one; I'd still go with Elven
Mantle since I'm a sucker for physical evasion (especially on mages) but the
Flame Ring certainly has its merits. Fira, for instance, becomes a superior
form of healing to Cura when everybody is draped in Flame Rings; it's more
powerful and a Bone Mail wearer is also healed (the Flame Ring's absorption
overrides the weakness coming from the Bone Mail). In addition, Rangers with
Flame Bows can now function as healers for themselves...

  3rd Floor:
  35 % Neon x 3
  35 % Magnetite x 2, Reflect Knight x 2
  23 % Traveler, Gravitator
   6 % Level Tricker x 3

  4th Floor:
  35 % Traveler, Neon x 2
  35 % Reflect Knight
  23 % Traveler, Reflect Knight, Magnetite
   6 % Level Tricker x 2, Traveler

  5th Floor:
  35 % Magnetite x 2, Reflect Knight x 2
  35 % Traveler, Gravitator
  23 % Level Tricker x 3
   6 % Gravitator, Reflect Knight, Magnetite

  6th Floor:
  35 % Reflect Knight
  35 % Traveler, Reflect Knight, Magnetite
  23 % Level Tricker x 2, Traveler
   6 % Gravitator, Reflect Knight, Level Tricker

Level Trickers will attack physically and use Level 4 Graviga every turn. If
you missed it earlier, pick it up here. Also, Level 5 Death and Level 2 Old are
in its Control menu, so if you've got the levels to learn either, please do.
You'll need to make the attack bounce off Dragon Defense (Dragon Fang +
Phoenix Down, sets Regen, Protect, Shell and Reflect), but then you're in
business. You can also Release a Neon; if it casts Reflect on a character with
a Reflect Ring, the Reflect spell will bounce off to a random enemy.

Another example of Exdeath's monster horde, Gravitators are wizards which
employ, you know, gravity-based attacks. Whoever came up with the idea that
gravity equals percentage-based damage should be hit. Anyway, you'll want to
kill them before their Gravity and Graviga spells are becoming too much of a
bother. Not interesting. Rarely drops Gaia Gear.

Up you go! The monster formation packs change all the time, but nothing you'll
really notice. You'll go past a chest containing 18000 Gil on the 6th floor, you
can't miss it. A brief cutscene will disrupt your steady climbing on the 7th.

  7th Floor:
  35 % Traveler, Gravitator
  35 % Level Tricker x 3
  23 % Gravitator, Reflect Knight, Magnetite
   6 % Ziggurat Gigas

  8th Floor:
  35 % Traveler, Reflect Knight, Magnetite
  35 % Level Tricker, Traveler
  23 % Gravitator, Reflect Knight, Level Tricker
   6 % Ziggurat Gigas, Magnetite x 2

  9th Floor:
  35 % Level Tricker x 3
  35 % Gravitator, Reflect Knight, Magnetite
  23 % Ziggurat Gigas
   6 % Ziggurat Gigas x 2, Magnetite

Ziggurat Gigas are the most formidable opponents the Barrier Tower has to
offer. They may use Hurricane whenever they feel like it, use Off-Guard to
lower your defenses and their physicals are quite brutal. You can rarely steal
a Partisan from these guys. They have no common steal, so it's a doable option;
you can disable them with Confuse, Stop, Sleep, Darkness, everything except
for Toad and Mini. If you never learned Off-Guard from Page 256 in the Library
of the Ancients, you can do so here. The Partisan is a good bit stronger than
the Javelin and the most powerful one-handed weapon you have at the moment,
should you want to give your Freelancers some love.

On the ninth floor, take the left door before going through the right one. Here,
another chest is guarded by either a Red Dragon or two Yellow Dragons. Again,
make sure you can survive a Red Dragon's initial Atomic Ray (around 650 Fire-
elemental damage) before opening the chest, or it's an instant Game Over. If you
got everything you wanted from the Red Dragon earlier (four Flame Rings and
Level 3 Flare), try going for two Yellow Dragons here. Catch one or both, and
maybe you'll get to take a Coral Ring home.

Coral Rings are similar to Flame Rings, only their elemental properties differ.
Coral Rings allow you to absorb Water-elemental attacks, nullify Fire-elemental
ones and make the wearer weak to Lightning-elemental attacks. While overall
less useful than the Flame Rings, there will be a fight in the future for which
four Coral Rings nothing short of a necessity.

The contents on the chest consist out of Gold Hairpin. This helmet can only be
worn by Mages. It adds no Defense and only 2 Magic Defense, but it has a rad
special property: the MP cost of spells cast by a character with the Gold
Hairpin equipped is cut by 50 %. Especially Summoners can take advantage of
this treat as Titan is rather heavy on the MP.

  10th Floor:
  35 % Level Tricker x 2, Traveler
  35 % Gravitator, Reflect Knight, Level Tricker
  23 % Ziggurat Gigas, Magnetite x 2
   6 % Neon

  Top Floor:
  35 % Gravitator, Reflect Knight, Magnetite
  35 % Ziggurat Gigas
  23 % Ziggurat Gigas x 2, Magnetite
   6 % Neon x 3

There's a Save Point on the 10th Floor, use it to Save. When you arrive at the
top floor, Xezat will contact you again. Things darken a little then.

"You think it'll be that easy? Think again! Now pay...with your blood!"

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.32.4  The fight with Atomos
**********************************

Atomos
Level: 41, HP: 19997, MP: 10000
Defense: 14, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 20%
Steal: Flail (rare), Ether (common)
Win: Dark Matter (always)
Status: Haste
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Sleep
Attacks: Gravity, Graviga, Slowga, Old, Comet

Atomos is a bastard, but not too tough of a fight when you see past the fact he
can kill two characters in a single round regardless of your defenses. But he
won't do it very often. Honest.

Whenever all four characters are alive, he'll cast Comet once or twice.
Whenever a character is down (petrified works too, though there's no reason to
cast it on yourself and Atomos certainly won't do it for you), he'll pull them
in his direction. When directly in front of Atomos, he'll use an attack called
Wormhole to remove them from the battlefield. In the meantime, he'll use some
minor Time magic spells but none of them are too threatening. Old is annoying,
quickly heal with Esuna; Slowga is the worst, set Haste to override the status
if possible.

There are three things you can do. First off, Atomos is vulnerable to Sleep, so
cast the Sleep spell, cast Time Slip or utilize Sleep Spellblade effects to
take advantage of the fact. Since the magical attacks miss on occasion, the
Spellblade strategy is best. In addition, pounding the ever-living crap out of
Atomos works as well: you should be able to kill him off before he uses
Wormhole once. If you don't think you're going to make it, revive the fallen
character and hope Atomos kills another party member this time. Since Atomos is
Hasted the entire battle, he moves quickly. Haste is theoretically removable,
but Atomos is immune to Slow (which would remove Haste) and you can't cast
Dispel yet.

A somewhat nice strategy that works is using Dark Spark to lower Atomos' level
to 20, then use Level 5 Death to kill the thing in a single hit. Dark Spark
won't hit often, though.

Bio spells are very powerful, as is Gaia's Wrath. Dual Twin Lances and a Two-
Handed Berserker deals significant damage (might wanna give him a Poison Axe
rather than a Gaia Hammer; the former doesn't have the annoying tendency to
deal out that weak Earthquake attack). A Ninja with two Twin Lances backed up
with Barehanded is a menace in this fight, you'll love it. The Mix outcome
Succubus Kiss also deals a LOT of damage (in the neighborhood of 3000), so
that's nice. Releasing a Yellow Dragon I told you about deals 4999 damage,
which is enough to warrant the use of a Beastmaster. Barehanded helps the
dominator out when he's made his first impact.

Keep Atomos snoozing, deal your damage and you'll easily live through this
fight. For a bit of trivia, Atomos made a re-appearance as a summon monster
later in Final Fantasy IX and was even given an appearance in a CG video (it's
massive and destroys windows).

While the mission objective has been reached, it's the end of the road for
Xezat of Ice. And so, another Warrior of Dawn falls...

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.33.1  The town of Moore
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Cure Beast (#115), Land Turtle (#116), Dechirer (#117)

  Container contents:
  Main Gauche

  Features:
  Piano

You've got the liberty of sea-travel again, and rest assured the submarine
grants access to a few places hitherto out of your reach. If you take the
submarine to the surface and walk over the Exdeath's Castle, you'll find
Xezat's troops there. The door is locked and unbreakable, so no progress past
this point yet. Maybe Sage Ghido knows something?

Note that the Wind Drake touched land close to the now-exploded Barrier Tower,
with the fleet gone and all. If you ever want to visit some old locations,
you can use the Wind Drake; none of the locations I'm going to discuss now
are accessible with the Wind Drake.

There's a few locations you can visit. You could travel to Surgate Castle and
hear the rage and sadness of its inhabitants, but it doesn't help you. You
could take the Wind Drake who waits for you on shore to Quelb and inform
Kelger, but all you bring is sadness.

Kelger: I see... Xezat has fallen...

No, we set out to find Ghido a while ago, and now is the time to approach him.
Krile's still urging us to go, so he must somehow still be alive; perhaps the
cave took an air bubble with it while it sank, who knows. Maybe it's a sea
turtle? However, there's a few things to be done before finding Ghido. We
should go to Moore, western-most white dot on the World Map. If you travel
east, you may pass a big dark crack in the sea floor; you cannot interact with
it now, but 'tis of significant importance.

Around Moore, there are forests filled with new random encounters!

  Forests:
  35 % Dechirer x5
  35 % Cure Beast, Land Turtle x2
  30 % Cure Beast x4

  Grasslands:
  70 % Dechirer x5
  23 % Cure Beast x4
   6 % Land Turtle x3

The Cure Beasts and Land Turtles were already swarming the grasslands
surrounding Surgate Castle, so those aren't new. Dechirer (French for 'to tear
up') absorb Lightning and fall quickly to Level 5 Death. When you Catch them,
they produce a Level 3 Flare spell, but you can't learn Blue spells from
Released monsters.

The town itself is so good, so blessed, so majestic that the word 'Mooregasm' is
not unheard of in certain circles.

There's little to do here; it's just a town covering its awesome new equipment
and spell selection. There's a Main Gauche hidden in one of the barrels left of
the Pub; just for evasive purposes, but still a decent blade. Know, by the way,
that two Main Gauches do not stack as far as physical evasion is concerned.
Speaking of Pubs, there's a Piano here! Play it! What you hear now is probably
the most famous piece of music played in the game, it being the Alla Turca by
Mozart.

"A piano virtuoso indeed!!! ...After a bit more practice, anyway."

Weapon Shop:
Air Knife           3400 Gil
Elven Bow           6400 Gil
  The Elven Bow, if you have one or more Hayate Bows, is incredibly useless in
every sense of the word. What IS of note, though, is that the Elven Bow has a
15% chance of inflicting a Critical Hit, hitherto unheard of with Bows. This
does not make it better than the Hayate Bow, but it is neat. The Air Knife, is
awesome. Why? Because it boosts the thus far nigh-unboostable Wind-elemental
attacks! This is especially good news since we're not far from obtaining
Aeroga, the strongest Blue Wind-elemental attack. Buy them for your Mages and
Clothes characters, they'll like them. I'm not sure what makes an Air Knife an
Air Knife, though. Maybe the blade is made out of air, but I guess that would
just make it a handle.

Armor Shop:
Diamond Shield      6000 Gil
Diamond Helm        7000 Gil
Tiger Mask          5000 Gil
Sage's Miter        3000 Gil
Diamond Armor       8000 Gil
Diamond Plate       6000 Gil
Luminous Robe       4000 Gil
Diamond Armlet      4000 Gil
  Not much to say here, really. There's upgrades for everybody. You decide if
you want to keep the Lamia's Tiaras or take up on the Sage's Miter. The latter
has more Defense, the former more Magic Defense, gives a slightly greater Magic
Power boost and protects against Confuse. I'd say go with the Tiara. Diamond
Armlets should be useless amidst all the Genji Gloves, Elven Mantles and Flame
Rings.

Magic Shop (White):
Curaga              6000 Gil
Reflect             6000 Gil
Berserk             6000 Gil
Blink               3000 Gil
Shell               3000 Gil
Esuna               3000 Gil
  This is so sweet. I know you're excited. Buy them all, and use them with
gusto. Curaga is, when MT'd, just a stronger Cura. ST, it will simply restore a
character's HP back to full. When Curaga is cast on an Undead target, it will
see its HP reduced to a single digit. Reflect causes a bunch of spells to
bounce from the affected target to the other party. Both offensive and
beneficial spells, that is. Most of the spells you can cast are vulnerable to
Reflect; chapter 8.1.20 lists them in detail. Berserk just sets Berserk. If Gil
is an issue, Curaga and Berserk are more important than Reflect, but see what
you need; you can already set both Berserk and Reflect with !Mix.

Magic Shop (Black):
Firaga              6000 Gil
Blizzaga            6000 Gil
Thundaga            6000 Gil
Drain               3000 Gil
Break               3000 Gil
Bio                 3000 Gil
  The new 3rd tier spells all transfer to Spellblade as well. As Black Magic
these're just very powerful. You can ditch the Poison Rod for the rest of the
game and switch back to the weaker ones which boost the primary elements. On
Spellblade effects, the elemental spells are a bit different from the others;
when the target is vulnerable to the element and not Heavy, the Spellblade
effect will simply kill the target in a single hit, disregarding damage output.
If you're short on Gil at this point, consider getting only one of the level 5
spells here; as far as weaknesses in the upcoming parts goes, there really
isn't much difference.

Magic Shop (Time):
Graviga             6000 Gil
Hastega             6000 Gil
Old                 6000 Gil
Comet               3000 Gil
Slowga              3000 Gil
Return              3000 Gil
  Especially Hastega is nice, as it sets Haste to all character. Graviga
reduces the HP of a non-Heavy target by 87.5 %. Old sets Old! Get the others
anyway if you have Gil to spare, which is unlikely at this point.

Item Shop:
Hi-Potion            360 Gil
Potion                40 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil

Ether               1500 Gil
Holy Water           150 Gil
Cottage              600 Gil
Goliath Tonic        110 Gil
Power Drink          110 Gil
Speed Shake          110 Gil
Iron Draft           110 Gil
Hero Cocktail        110 Gil
  You may want to Mix some Death Potions in the future, so make sure you're not
short on Phoenix Down. In addition, if you want to detour for another Summon
spell, you'll see some petrification action, so more than a few Gold Needles
won't hurt. Seriously, the petrification will be all over the place.

This town's a hole. Get out. Now, get in yo' submarine and travel to the north
where a new summon monster is waiting.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.34.1  The fight with Catoblepas
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Cure Beast (#115), Land Turtle (#116), Dechirer (#117), Druid (#176),
  Ironback (#177), Catoblepas (#281)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Angel Ring (rare Druid steal), Catoblepas (guaranteed Catoblepas drop)

  Summon spells:
  Catoblepas

  Blue spells:
  Dark Spark

"Well, I was up there, and this huge eye started glaring at me! It's amazing I
made it back alive!"

With the submarine, travel to the northern-most white dot on the World Map. You
should find a cave here; take the submarine there to find yourself in the Sea
Floor Cave.

  Sea Floor Cave:
  35 % Druid x 3
  35 % Druid, Ironback
  30 % Ironback x 3

There are two kinds of enemies here. Druids are magical adepts; they can slow
you down with Web and weaken you with Dischord. They can also use Magnet and
Image, an attack that makes them evade the next two physical attacks
altogether. Their most dangerous attack is Encircle, which removes a character
from battle. They have a rare Angel Ring steal, which is part of the reason
you're here. You can Control them to have them cast Dark Spark on you if you
wanna.

The Ironbacks are massive beasts with incredible physical force and impressive
defense. They should be weakened with Toad, Sleep, Flash or the like
immediately. Their elemental weakness is Ice, so take advantage of that. They
have an extremely strong !Release attack, so get one or more. A single Released
Ironback one-shots the boss we're here to face; they're extremely easy to catch
with a Kornago Gourd character and a single casting of Level 4 Graviga. Flash
and Pond's Chorus cripple them easily, as does Death Claw.

The Angel Ring is much more of a protective Accessory than the elemental rings
are. Superior Magic Defense by far, superior Defense and immunity to two of the
most crippling status ailments in the game, Old and Zombie. Nice. I suggest it
as THE Accessory at this point in the game, surpassing the elemental rings,
Elven Mantles and Genji Gloves.

This is a great place to train. The encounters yield impressive ABP totals and
the encounters are easily defeated when you're properly set up with Lv. 4 
Graviga and/or Titan summoning. I heartily recommend a Thief, both for the
ability to avoid devastating Back Attacks from Ironbacks as well as that rare
Angel Ring. Ideally, you leave this place with four Angel Rings and a !Caught
Ironback, but getting all those Angel Rings can be hard, boring work and they're
not essential until far later in the game. 

  Northern Lake Forest:
  35 % Catoblepas --> Dechirer, Land Turtle, Cure Beast x 2
  35 % Dechirer, Land Turtle, Cure Beast x 2
  30 % Dechirer x 5

  Tiny bits of grassland:
  35 % Land Turtle
  35 % Cure Beast, Land Turtle x2
  30 % Cure Beast x4

Back on the Map, there's nothing there. Sure, a Chocobo forest, but the only
Chocobo present is a female, so we can't ride her.

That's not the kind of logic I grew up with, amiright guyz?

Guyz?

... the thing we're looking for is Catoblepas, a random encounter. You'll
randomly encounter it.

Catoblepas
Level: 38, HP: 5000, MP: 500
Defense: 20, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Phoenix Down (rare)
Win: Catoblepas (always)
Creature: Dragon, Heavy, Magic Beast
Special Technique: !Rush
Special Technique Effect: Paralyze
Vulnerable to: Poison, Stop
Attacks: Battle, Drain, Evil Eye

Here's the eye! It's a pig. The pig is dangerous. It'll randomly attack
physically and cast Drain, but its biggest annoyance is its Evil Eye attack,
which it directs against everything that deals HP damage to it. The Ribbon
protects against Petrify, but that's about it. The best you can do is prepare
with Gold Needles.

Summon Golem to protect against physicals. You can't really do anything about
his Drain spell other than draining his MP, which a few successive Magic
Hammer spells can accomplish. Drain deals around 300 damage, so you can
easily outheal it. Even then, Evil Eye still lurks.

You can simply skip to whoever deals the most damage to this guy. When
Catoblepas counters this attack with Evil Eye, quickly restore the softness
with a Gold Needle or Esuna with one of the three back-up characters. You
won't lose this battle.

Another option is casting Poison on his and simply waiting. He'll attack you
all the while, but after 16 turns he'll definitely be dead and Evil Eye never
made an appearance.

Releasing an Ironback will deal anywhere between 5400 and 6000 damage,
instantly killing Cato. This is useful! I suggest Catching another Ironback for
the future. The next boss fight won't really need an Ironback, but being able
to dish out that kind of damage at whatever level really is kinda useful.

   iOS/Android: Released Ironbacks only deal around 2700 damage. Also, Drain 
   deals somewhat more damage, around 500. So your best bet is sucking up the 
   Evil Eye attacks, are buffing and healing with everybody except for a Ribbon-
   wearing powerhouse, possible summoning Titan or casting Aeroga or a level 5
   Black spell. 

Anyway, you get the Catoblepas item after the battle. It teaches your Summoner
to summon him in battle. It's simply an ST Petrify-inducing attack like Break
was, but Catoblepas' Demon Eye is more accurate, ignores the Reflect status and
looks cooler. It's also much more MP-costly.

When you're done (also with the Angel Rings?), it's really really time to go
visit Ghido. He's waiting for us and Krile's headache probably bothers her.
It's right there in the middle of your World Map.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.35.1  Our brilliant leader: the great Sage Ghido
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Dark Aspic (#113), Metamorph (#114)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Staff of Light (rare Metamoprh drop)

  Blue spells:
  Pond's Chorus, Aeroga, Flash, Vampire

  First room, B2, B3:
  35 % Metamorph (Shiva, Cait Sith, Elf Toad)
  35 % Dark Aspic x 2
  23 % Metamorph (Ifrit, Wyvern, Enchanted Fan)
   6 % Dark Aspic x 4

  The first room with hidden passages (officially still B3):
  35 % Metamorph (Ifrit, Wyvern, Enchanted Fan)
  35 % Metamorph (Shiva, Cait Sith, Elf Toad)
  23 % Dark Aspic x 2
   6 % Dark Aspic x 4

  All others:
  35 % Metamorph (Shiva, Ifrit, Ramuh)
  35 % Metamorph (Ramuh, Crew Dust, Zombie Dragon)
  23 % Metamorph (Ramuh, Crew Dust, Zombie Dragon)
   6 % Dark Aspic x 4

Dark Aspic attacks physically and may use Vampire to restore lost HP. A Flame
Scroll or Ifrit's Inferno should take them all out. They're not that
interesting.

Metamorph just sits there and takes abuse until he transforms into one of the
three different forms that particular Metamorph you're facing can morph into.
He'll use an attack based on his form and then revert. The attacks are these:

Shiva:          Blizzara
Cait Sith:     !Catscratch (unblockable, pierces Defense)
Elf Toad:       Pond's Chorus
Ifrit:          Blaze
Wyvern:         Breath Wing
Enchanted Fan:  Aeroga
Ramuh:          Lightning
Crew Dust:      Flash
Zombie Dragon:  Zombie Breath

M. won't keep his Wind-elemental weakness when morphed. Metamorph may rarely
drop a Staff of Light, but only when you kill him in his 'normal' form. Make
sure to try and learn Aeroga from Metamorph's Enchanted Fan form; it's the 3rd
tier Wind-elemental spell and the Blue Mage's most consistent means of powerful
damage output in the game. Boosted with Air Knives (or the Wind Slash katana),
they'll rip Metamorphs to shreds. Be wary of the Zombie Dragon form; Zombie
Breath can deal up to 950 damage and turns all that it kills into Zombies
(unless the target is protected by Angel Rings). 

   iOS/Android: Metamorph is mistakingly in the Back Row in this game, so 
   you'll find most phyiscal attacks lacking. A Dragoon can !Jump with a Wind
   Spear hits a weakness, but mostly just stick with !Gaia, which will summon 
   the powerful Cave-in most of the time. 

The Staff of Light deals a little Holy-elemental damage and has the ability to
cast the Holy spell when used as an item. It breaks when releasing the light
inside. The Staff of Light is the best option for the White Mage easily, and
has use on Time Mages and Chemists since it boosts Magic Power. I find myself
going for physical evasion (Main Gauche) instead, but your experiences may
differ.

Get a Ninja and have them Throw Flame Scrolls; you no longer worry about Dark
Aspic encounters. Those who can summon Ifrit will also do, but make sure the
conjurers are wielding a Flame Rod. What's left is the Metamorph. The Air Knife,
Dragoon's Wind Lance and the Aeroga spell are your ticket to Wind-elemental 
attacks. Note that strangely, the Samurai's Wind Slash katana is, itself, not 
Wind-elemental. The random Gale Cut attack is, however, and the katana can be
used to boost Wind-elemental attacks such as Aera and Aeroga. Any character 
using the Geomancer's !Gaia has a shot at Wind Slash, which can also be boosted 
by the Air Knife. When picking a random number between 0 and the !Gaia user's 
level, any result between 21 and 50 will net you Wind Slash. Since the other 
attacks are also useful (Will o' the Wisp may set Confuse on Metamorph, 
Stalactite deals solid damage), !Gaia is a good action ability here. The most
straight-forward strategy is just learning Aeroga ASAP here, then having two
characters cast it on Metamorp before he changes into something grizzly. 

Just walk on until you come in a room with one full chest, four empty ones and
a lot of closed doors. Taking a heavy stone out of the middle chest closes the
door you came through, but putting it any of the empty chests opens another
one.

1   2
  5
3   4

Take the stone from #5 and deposit it in #1. Walk into the newly opened door,
push the button to open a new path and return. Take the stone from #1 and put
it in #3. Continue to find yourself in what appears to be a dead end. There's a
hidden passage to the south which is not of the kind you do or do not see with
Find Passages; you'll see the thing when you get near. It leads to a skull
switch; flip it open a new passage leading further down into the cave. Down
here, a few caves are connected with the same kind of passages, you'll see them
easily. Spelunking, that's what you're doing now.

It continues like this for a while until you see a turtle in a pond. Diving in
will take you to see the great Sage Ghido, old and wise leader of this world's
resistance versus Exdeath.

"By the briny beard of Neptune!"

Note that Guido's derogatory tone is absent from the original game, and was
implemented for fun by the GBA remake team; it was not a bad choice.

When you've taken the Guardian Branch with you, you can return to the
submarine. If you have yet to obtain a Staff of Light or have another reason to
linger, do so. Else, you can cast Teleport to find yourself in the submarine
again.

The Forest of Moore, strangely, is near the town of Moore. I took you there
earlier, so I won't discuss Moore again. If you feel the need to read up again,
go back to section 4.33.1 or something. This is a good time to purchase things
you lacked the finances for earlier.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.35.2  The Great Forest of Moore
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Mini Magician (#118), Galajelly (#119), Mammon (#120), Imp (#121), Wyrm
  (#122), (Crystal) (#277), (Crystal) (#278), (Crystal) (#279), (Crystal) (#280)

  Container contents:
  2500 Gil, 4900 Gil, 9500 Gil, Ether, Phoenix Down, Cottage, Goliath Tonic,
  Morning Star, Elixir, Aegis Shield OR Flame Shield, Ash, Flametongue

  Miscellaneous items:
  Ash (rare (Crystal) drop), Dragon Fang (rare Wyrm drop), Elixir (rare
  (Crystal) steal)

  Blue pells:
  Lilliputian Lyric, Aera, Aeroga, Aqua Breath

  Entrance:
  35 % Galajelly x 3
  35 % Galajelly x 2, Mini Magician x 2
  23 % Mammon x 3, Mini Magician x 2
   6 % Mammon x 2, Galajelly x 2, Mini Magician

  Middle part:
  35 % Mammon x 3, Mini Magician x 2
  35 % Mammon x 2, Galajelly x 2, Mini Magician
  23 % Imp x 2
   6 % Imp, Mammon x 2, Galajelly

  Roots:
  35 % Wyrm
  35 % Wyrm, Mini Magician x 2
  30 % Mini Magician x 6

  Final part:
  35 % Imp, Mammon x 2, Galajelly
  35 % Imp x 2, Galajelly, Mini Magician
  23 % Wyrm
   6 % Wyrm, Mini Magician

The Great Forest of Moore is the birthplace of Exdeath, and a dark maze of
intelligent trees. Tree spirits may open paths for you, but you'll need to find
them first. And even with the Guardian Branch, there are many creatures in the
forest who don't take too kindly to strangers.

Mini Magicians must never be Confused, as they will cast spells such as Return
(hassle) and Mute (bad for you). They may randomly cast Lilliputian Lyric, a
Blue spell, similar to Pond's Chorus, which sets Mini. Well, why not. You can't
Control them for it, so you'll have to wait and be patient. They will use it
every third turn. You can have your White Mage heal Mini with the Mini spell or
use the so-far useless Mallet.

Galajelly absorbs every element except Wind, and has crazy Evasion ratings.
Aero spells are powerful enough, even MT'd, to kill them. !Gaia attacks always
off them too, even Leaf Swirl. They have an attack called Rainbow Wind that
sets both Darkness AND Silence, rendering a character incapable of both
physical and most magical attacks.

Mammon, like the Treants you saw earlier, like to cast the Berserk spell on
themselves. Their physical onslaught is not very scary, and they are weak to
Fire-elemental attacks.

Imp! I hate the Imp. They are fairly sturdy since they have no elemental
weaknesses and have 2000 HP. Also, they may cast Confuse on characters, which
is annoying. Especially versus the Imps it is nice to be able to inflict Stop
or Confuse status all the time. They are not very interesting at all, they
just suck.

Wyrms may look intimidating, but are not so. Physicals to disregard? Breath
Wing very rarely? Puh-leaze. You and me, we eat these babies for dinner and
then some. It is a Dragon.

I've got a great strategy 4 u. All the monsters here are vulnerable to Romeo's
Ballad, so have one character who can !Sing use it at all times. Have the other
three attack, preferably with options that don't consume anything. Consider
!Gaia as an easy way of dealing damage for the mages without using MP; though
considerably weaker in terms of damage output, you'll suffer from *very* few
hits in the Great Forest as long as you keep Romeo's Ballad up, so the speed of
the battle isn't that important. Blue magic comes in read handy versus
Galajelly encounters; Titan is a powerful attack versus all the other enemies
here.

This is a long-ass walk through the park for you, so if you are adamant about
Black Mages and Summoners, prepare to use Ethers and the like. If you possess
the !Mix ability, using a Lilith's Kiss (Ether + Maiden's Kiss) will restore
all the MP a target has (Imps top the chart with 200), or simply !Mix a Turtle
Shell and a Potion to create a 80 MP restoring Ether. Flame Scrolls are handy
versus Mammons and, coming from sufficient Magic Power, able to kill Mini
Magicians in a single hit as well.

Enter the forest. Dead ahead is a chest containing 2500 Gil. To the right is a
tree with a hole in it; this is where a tree's spirit can be found. Next to the
three is a chest with an Ether. Get the Ether and interact with the tree go
gain passage. Beneath the tree's roots, you travel to a new part of the forest.

Going up, bending to the right for a few tiles, you'll come across a chest with
4900 Gil. Keep to the top edge and walk to the right to find a Phoenix Down
in a chest surrounded by flowers. Continue following the top border to the
right, but pass up a tree with a hole in it and continue. Eventually, there's
a chest with 9500 Gil. Now, return to the spirit tree and open the new
passageway.

You clearly see a chest when you surface; it contains a Cottage. All the way to
the right is a chest containing a Goliath Tonic. Go all the way up from there
and find a special Save Point, which you might need by now. From there, go to
the left, up and a little up again; there's a chest with an Elixir. Now, go all
the way up and stick to the right side until you encounter a chest with a
Morning Star. This is some kind of super-Flail; it deals physical damage and
combines with Two-Handed. It's for everybody who uses Staves. Even with
Two-Handed, damage isn't impressive. Now, go to the left.

Suddenly, a disaster strikes. There's not really anywhere you can go. There's a
chest here containing an Aegis Shield. If you wait for a very slight while,
you'll be able to pick up a Flame Shield instead. Neither picking up the Aegis
Shield nor the Flame Shield has any influence on your Treasure %.

The Flame Shield gives 7 Defense, 40 % Evade, 5 Magic Defense and allows the
wearer to absorb Fire-elemental attacks.

The Aegis Shield gives only 5 Defense, 33 % Evade, no Magic Defense and merely
protects against the Petrify status ailment. However, the Aegis Shield make a
similar check to magical attack as the Main Gauche does for physicals. 33 % of
any blockable magical attack misses a character with the Aegis Shield equipped.
There is no such thing as 'unblockable' when it comes to the Aegis Shield;
especially if you have Flame Rings, the Aegis Shield is probably the better
choice.

If you pick the Aegis Shield or not, eventually a Moogle will pop up. Drop down
and wait until the fire has raged out. You can restore your HP/MP in the water.
Go up to see the disastrous results of Exdeath's forest genocide. There's the
chest again; you can pick up the Flame Shield now if you didn't pick the Aegis
Shield earlier.

  Burned forest:
  35 % Galajelly x 3
  35 % Galajelly x 2, Mini Magician x 2
  23 % Mammon x 3, Mini Magician x 2
   6 % Mammon x 2, Galajelly x 2, Mini Magician

Simply go to the left now that leaves and shadows are no longer blocking your
vision. Get some Ash from a treasure chest. Ash can be Thrown, but it'll do
pathetic damage and has no other use (at least, in the Super Famicom and PSX
versions; it can be used with !Combine in FFVA). To the south there's an exit
which'll take you to the Overworld Map. To the far left there's a Knightsword
called the Flametongue; it's a Fire-elemental sword that's actually rather
powerful. Note that a Knight with a Flametongue and a Flame Ring or Flame
Shield can heal him- or herself. Also note that these Knights should be in the
Front Row, as when they're in the Back Row they'll only deal 25% damage to
themselves :/

Pressing on to the north will get you to the Guardian Tree.

Enter, please.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.35.3  The fight against the Guardians
**********************************

?
Level: 77, HP: 7777, MP: 10000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 20%
Steal: Elixir (rare)
Win: Ash (rare)
Absorbs: its respective element, Nullifies: Holy, Poison, Lightning, Ice
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Darkness, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack, Firaga / Aeroga / Aqua Breath / Earth Shaker

This fight has four targets. They represent the elements of the crystals; each
target possesses a single element. This target absorbs that element and will
use an elemental attack accordingly when weakened. Below 3000 HP, the Fire
Guardian will cast Firaga, the Water Guardian will cast Aqua Breath, the Earth
Guardian uses Earth Shaker and the Wind Guardian casts Aeroga. All attacks are
always used on the entire party. The Guardians are laid out like this:

        Fire
Wind            Water
        Earth

I suggest you start the battle by casting Flash and Slowga until most enemies
are blinded and slowed. You can Summon Golem to turn yourself immune to their
physical attacks and Shell to protect against the magical ones when they do
appear. The Mix outcome Dark Sigh (Eye Drops + Dragon Fang) sets Darkness 
disregarding their evasion, but I feel it's a waste of a rare and valuable
Dragon Fang. You can cast Float to avoid Earth Shaker and Mix an Ether with 
some Eye Drops to gain a Resist Fire potion that will make the afflicted 
character absorb the Firaga spells. Now, you're set to destroy them without 
having to worry too much. Take your time and select one target at a time before
moving on to the next.

The key to their defeat lies in the lack of Heavy nature and vulnerability to
the Death status. The Mix outcome Death Potion (Phoenix Down + Dark Matter)
instantly kills a Guardian. Death Claw also works, although the Guardians' high
level will make sure Death Claw will often miss. Missile and Graviga are
spells that will deal a great amount of damage to these things, but expect a
powerful attack coming your way before you can kill them. The Shell status
helps reduce this danger by a lot. 

The fight isn't too hard, you can just maneuver yourself in a situation where
you'll be VERY killed VERY quickly if you don't watch out.

In the end, it seems we've made a bit of a slip-up there. Exdeath arrives to
assume domination of the crystals of this world; the very crystals we've
granted it access to. Krile comes to rescue us from Exdeath's torment only to
find herself as a target of Exdeath's force as well. In a display both heroic
and foolish, Galuf fights back the power of one of the crystals, shattering it.
The effects of this act will have to be seen; for now, Galuf faces Exdeath,
alone.

Galuf will never die in this battle, though he'll remain at 0 HP for most of it.
If he gains HP back, you'll see the Sap status in effect, which is continuous
throughout the battle. If Galuf uses Self-Destruct, Transfusion or TNT (a !Mix
outcome), the battle will end automatically. Exdeath will have to take 7000
damage before it'll get angered and casts the three ultimate spell from the main
magic schools: the Black Flare spell, the White Holy spell and the Time Meteor
spell. After that, damaging Exdeath three times will end the battle.

   iOS/Android: Self-Destruct will not end the battle. I have not tested this 
   yet, but I would assume neither will Transfusion and TNT. 

...



And thus, Galuf Halm Baldesion fell, and so did the world weep.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.36.1  The fight with the Gil Turtle; get rich or die tryin'
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Undergrounder (#98), Gil Turtle (#282)

  Miscellaneous items:
  10 Gil, 20 Gil, 40 Gil, 80 Gil, 160 Gil, 320 Gil, 640 Gil, 1280 Gil, 2560 Gil,
  5120 Gil, 10240 Gil, 20480 Gil, 40960 Gil

It's a harsh transition between Galuf's demise and the order of everyday, but
as so often the world does not stop to mourn a single death. Exdeath must pay,
but there's more to do. Mainly, since the end of the next dungeon will mean a
BIG change in your options, this section is an overview of what you can still
do here. There's a side-quest to be done which cannot be done later but is so
special it's not like normal side-quests. Basically, all you get from it is a
LOT of Gil, and the only thing you have to do is punch a turtle.

I shouldn't forget to mention that this turtle is an undead demonic Testudine
with the strength of a thousand evil armies and almost impenetrable defenses.
It's also poisonous. Most parties won't be able to defeat it, and even if you
followed everything I've told you so far. Gil Turtle is an extremely powerful
opponent which requires you to utilize special tactics to take him down.

Should you want to travel between Castle Bal and Castle Exdeath, you could take
the Wind Drake and make a detour over Drakenvale and Quelb. However, a more
direct route takes you through Gil Cave, of which the entrances lie east of
Castle Bal and south-west of the Big Bridge. Here, only Undergrounder's appear;
giant centipedes which attack with physical attacks and Earthquake, an MT
Earth- elemental attack which you can avoid with Float. Level 4 Graviga can be
used to quickly put a dent in all Undergrounder's HP, then finish with
whatever.

In the middle of the path under the mountains is a pathway downwards which
eventually curls upwards to a door. There's a bit where you can't see your lead
character, but as soon as you can see him or her again, every tile will award
you with Gil! Every step will get you twice the amount the previous tile
rewarded you with. None of these pieces o' gold count towards your Treausre %.
However, only the sun is free these days and for every step you take there's a
chance Gil Turtle will attack you. He'll only attack you when you pick up Gil,
so on the way back he won't make a showing. But oh, when he does make a
showing...

Gil Turtle
Level: 57, HP: 32768, MP: 8000
Defense: 40, Magic Defense: 55
Evasion: 40%, Magic Evasion: 40%
Steal: Potion (rare), Hi-Potion (common)
Absorbs: Water, Wind, Earth, Poison, Lightning, Fire
Nullifies: Holy
Weakness: Ice
Status: Protect, Shell
Creature: Undead, Heavy
Special Technique: !Turtle
Special Technique Effect: sets Darkness, Poison and Confuse
Vulnerable to: Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Turtle, Earthquake

Gil Turtle's AI script is simple and effective. He's fast like greased
lightning and attacks physically every turn. When damaged by whatever, he'll
counter with !Turtle, which deals the same amount of brutal physical damage and
sets Darkness and Poison. He counters every attack you send flying at him with
two !Turtle attacks. When defeated, he'll use an Earthquake attack which deals
around 3500 damage to the entire party. If you're not Floating, you die. Cast
Float beforehand, I suppose.

The strategy here depends a little on luck. His weakness is Ice, and that's
what we'll have to exploit in order to defeat the thing. Boosted Blizzaga
spells and Blizzaga spellblade effects are your best options on the offense;
Requiem and Level 3 Flare also deal damage though quite a lot less. The key to
your protection is the fact that whatever Gil Turtle is throwing at you,
however, intimidatingly powerful, are simply blockable physical attacks. Also,
Gil Turtle's fast and will decimate you if you're loitering, but his true
strength is his dual !Turtle omni-counter. This means that you can relatively
safely boost your own strength in the meantime.

Equip Main Gauches and Elven Mantles; you've got two of the former and three of
the latter if you picked up everything so far. Evasion is far superior to
defense in this battle. The White Blink spell and the Ninja's !Image ability
both grant the affected character the prospect of dodging the next two physical
attacks, and Golem's Earthen Wall stops his attacks as well. With Golem, a few
images and your own enhanced evasive abilities, Gil Turlte will get in precious
few hits. A Knight will protect all characters that are crouching down. With
!Guard set, it will catch all of Gil Turtle's attacks and take no damage. If
you give the Knight your Bone Mail, it will become immune to !Turtle's status
part as well. 

Set up the above and cast Hastega. Now, have every character capable of dealing
significant damage do so. If a character is not capable of making a large
impact (say, you've made a Time Mage with !Summon to support the party) just
use Defense rather than deal a little damage, as Gil Turtle's counterattacks
aren't worth it. Keep healing, reviving and damaging and you should be able to
outpower Gil Turtle.

Note that once you leave the area behind the door, the tiles reset. Again, the
first tile contains 10 Gil, the last tile contains 40960 Gil and Gil Turtle may
appear whenever it feels like it. Infinite amounts of money, sure, but one trip
gets you 81910 Gil which already is a all the Gil you'll be spending in the
future so there's really no good reason to do it all again.

Kelger: "Xezat...and Galuf... It seems I am all that remains of the Dawn
Warriors... How ironic - the oldest and weakest of we four is the only one who
still lives..."

Ghido will also have some pricess advice for you if you bother to seek him
out at this point:

Ghido: "Exdeath is returning to his castle. Defeat him before it's too late!"

In Castle Bal, everybody dislikes Exdeath. This is because it killed their
king. The same goes for Surgate Castle, where all the soldiers mourn the
death of King Xezat. Since so many wounded soldiers return from the siege on
Exdeath's Castle, the Inn is needed as a hospital and you can't use it.

If you never entered the Sealed Castle of Kuza, and you take your team there,
a bug will occur: the doesn't take into account that Krile replaced Galuf
in your team, so Galuf will still talk about the history of the castle.

Like I said, at the end of the next dungeon comes a big change for you. Make
sure you got the following; if you miss some stuff and care to see if you can
still get it, please do.

White:
Blink, Shell, Esuna, Curaga, Reflect, Berserk

Black:
Drain, Break, Bio, Firaga, Blizzaga, Thundaga

Time:
Float, Teleport, Comet, Slowga, Return, Graviga, Hastega, Old

Summon:
Golem, Catoblepas

Blue:
Aqua Breath     Level 5 Death   Level 4 Graviga         Level 3 Flare
Level 2 Old     Pond's Chorus   Lilliputian Lyric       Flash
Time Slip       Death Claw      Aera                    Aeroga
Flame Thrower   Goblin Punch    Dark Spark              Off-Guard
Transfusion     Vampire         Magic Hammer            Self-Destruct
???             1000 Needles    White Wind              Missile

Songs:
Requiem, Swift Song

Pianos:
Regole, Moore

The spells, Songs and pianos are not missable. Catoblepas can be forever lost,
and Golem will be much harder to track down in the future than he is now, so
make sure to obtain both allies. 

Noteworthy items:
Those Staves of Light that are a rare drop from Metamorph are something to
consider; past this point it's a rare steal from a boss and then it's all over
as far as Staves of Light go. Best to get one now if you don't have it yet.

Special treasures:
There's really not that much you could have left behind. Found the treasures
in the Moogle Village? Collected enough Dragon Fangs for the upcoming
dungeon? Did you ever get the Kornago Gourd? Obtained the Swift Song and all?
Stolen enough Twin Lances?

Bestiary (52%):
Normal enemies: #70 - #122 (exception #87), #176 and #177
Aquatic enemies: -
Boss enemies: #266 - #282

Necessary items:
This is a good time to invest in a load of Gold Needles and Lightning Scrolls
both of which can be bought in Quelb. They'll be both be useful in the future
and this is the last place you can buy them before you come across that future. 

Just for funsies, version 2, here's an example of one of my teams at the
moment:


LV 5 Knight
LV 2 Monk
LV 1 Dragoon
LV 4 Samurai
LV 1 Berserker
LV 2 Ranger
LV 2 Mystic Knight
LV 3 Blue Mage

Still mainly a heavy armor kinda guy, but Bartz is branching out into the
world. A Ranger dip for !Aim, and I got !Blue for him. Goblin Punch and his
HP-based attacks work well on a slow, strong hitter; Goblin Punch is
unblockable when accuracy is of the essence. The Dragoon and Mystic Knight are
more or less wasted ABP to be honest, as they don't teach anything funky they
can't do better themselves.

Eventually, Bartz will have to learn !Rapid Fire, Dual-Wield and master Monk,
Thief and Oracle and he is working on NONE of those things at this point. Oh,
well.

Lenna:

LV 3 Black Mage
LV 6 Time Mage
LV 5 Summoner
LV 3 Blue Mage
LV 3 Red Mage
LV 2 Geomancer
LV 2 Chemist
LV 1 Ranger
LV 2 Dancer

Does things from the Back Row with Magic Power. Maxed out Summoner early so for
the rest of her career, she's got the option to maximize Magic on herself.
!Dance is 50% Magic-based, as is !Mix on some very rare occasions. What could
be missing here is !Sing, I suppose... Working on Black Mage at the moment,
which explains the arbitrary stop at LV 3 there.

In the future lies the dreaded path to !Dualcast, but learning to master the
four schools of magic comes first.

Krile:

LV 4 White Mage
LV 6 Black Mage
LV 5 Time Mage
LV 1 Summoner
LV 3 Blue Mage
LV 3 Red Mage
LV 2 Chemist
LV 1 Geomancer
LV 3 Bard ***
LV 1 Ranger

Another spellslinger, Krile has !Sing instead of !Summon 5. Mastered Bard even,
but it was an accident, I promise. Working White Magic here... with the
exception of !Summon 5 not a single magic skillset take precedence over another
since if you want a magic skillset, you just become the appropriate Job and set
another one to complement it.

She'll be a !Dualcaster like Lenna in the future, but not now.

Faris:

LV 2 Monk
LV 5 Thief
LV 4 Ninja
LV 2 Ranger
LV 3 Beastmaster

A short list, but most ABP disappeared into the Ninja class for Dual-Wield. Not
quite there yet since I refuse to go out of my way for it, but being a Ninja is
not a punishment. Faris walks around and either has !Control or Barehanded,
depends on the dungeon. She walks around as a Thief until I know I've got all
items I want.

Like Bartz, Faris will become a !Rapid Fire, Dual-Wield monkey for me; she's
getting there already, so I basically traded using Heavy Armor Jobs on Bartz
NOW for reaching limit-breaking abilities earlier. I stand by that choice.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.37.1  Castle Exdeath 1; ascension and the fight with Carbuncle
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Twin Lizard (#123), Blind Wolf (#124), Hellraiser (#125), Reflect Mage (#126),
  Magic Dragon (#127), Black Warlock (#128), Adamantite Golem (#129),
  Bandercoeurl (#130), Iron Fist (#131), Blue Dragon (#132), Red Dragon (#133),
  Yellow Dragon (#134), Imp (Ex) (-), Oiseaurare (Ex) (-), Jackanapes (Ex) (-),
  Abductor (Ex) (-), Carbuncle (#283), Gilgamesh (#284), Exdeath (#285)

  Container contents:
  8000 Gil, 9900 Gil, Diamond Shield, Elixir x 2, Ether, Fuma Shuriken, Ice
  Shield, Hayate Bow, Icebrand, Kotetsu, Partisan, Twin Lance

  Miscellaneous items:
  Spear (rare Shell Bear steal), Reflect Ring (rare steal from Reflect Mage,
  common steal from Carbuncle), Power Staff (rare drop from Black Warlock),
  Judgment Staff (rare steal from Black Warlock), Beast Killer (rare steal from
  Iron Fist), Flame Ring (rare steal from Red Dragon), Excalipoor (guaranteed
  Gilgamesh drop), Genji Helm (common steal from Gilgamesh)

  Spells:
  White Wind, Aeroga, Off-Guard, Level 2 Old, Magic Hammer, Moon Flute, Level 3
  Flare, Lilliputian Lyric, Pond's Chorus, Time Slip, Flash, Doom

  Ground Floor behind Save Point:
  35 % Bandercoeurl, Blind Wolf x 2
  35 % Iron Fist x 2
  23 % Red Dragon, Blue Dragon
   6 % Red Dragon

  2nd Floor:
  35 % Twin Lizard x 2
  35 % Blind Wolf x 5
  23 % Reflect Mage, Blind Wolf x 2, Twin Lizard
   6 % Reflect Mage x 3

  3rd Floor (illusion):
  35 % Blind Wolf x 5
  35 % Twin Lizard x 2, Blind Wolf, Hellraiser
  23 % Reflect Mage, Blind Wolf x 2, Twin Lizard
   6 % Reflect Mage x 3

A TASK OF H E R O E S

As soon as you enter, the armies of Surgate lie defeated before you. None of
them posed any challenge to Exdeath. However, your powers have improved
greatly since the last time you got whipped by a band of pirates, so you
shouldn't count this situation as proof you stand no chance either. In the
basement, Shell Bears and Tarantulas still roam the place. If you never got
that Spear from the Shell Bears, get one now or lose it forever. That water
past the Save Point can still function as a Recovery Spring, which might aid
you. If you go up, new monsters will start appearing. Ready for this?

The Twin Lizards you encounter here are exactly like their counterparts you met
near Jachol and on Crescent Island all these millennia ago, only a bit stronger.
Weak to Ice-elemental attacks, no special properties.

Blind Wolves are inherently affected by Darkness; they are, in fact, blind.
However, they do manage to land a hit on occasion, and when the hit in question
is their !Tusk attack it'll set Darkness on you as well. They only have 900 HP
and are weak to Fire-elemental attacks; any serious attempt at multi-target
violence will kill them, especially a conjuration of Ifrit.

Hellraisers are restorative bunnies like the Cure Beasts you encountered
earlier. However, they will simply attack physically until they die, at which
point they'll cast Arise on a random target that isn't them. When the target in
question was Dead, they'll be revived with full HP. If not, Arise will do
nothing. Hellraisers can be Silenced, Stopped, Paralyzed and Berserked to
prevent Arise from being cast.

Reflect Mage use Fire, Fira, Blizzard, Blizzara, Thunder and Thundara on
themselves. These attacks are weak, and the Reflect Mages themselves are frail.
Just don't try to attack them with magical spells that bounce off. Also, make
sure never to Confuse them (which basically means, never whip out an Alluring
Air) as the Reflect Mages will now start casting Slowga and Thundaga on the
enemy party, which bounces off unto you. Gaia's Wrath and physical attacks are
grand versus them. They have a rare Reflect Ring steal, which is a much more
reliable source than the Reflect Knight's rare drop. Make sure to get at least
two of them. An upcoming boss has two far easier Reflect Rings for you to take,
and you can take them before really needing them. Stealing them from Reflect
Mages is quite easy, since they have no common Steal item; Time Slip disables 
them for the duration of the fight and bypasses Reflect when cast, as does Mute.

This dungeon is awesome, seriously. A lot of interesting and tough monsters,
and all Jobs (much like the flying ruins of Lonka) are pretty much balanced so
there's no quick way to defeat the opponents. In addition, all enemies here give
really notable amounts of Experience and ABP so you may actually want to go for
abilities such as !Rapid Fire and Dual Wield.

Heavy Armor characters will notice that the Dragoon and Berserker both didn't
get any better since you left Bartz' homeworld; you're still wielding the Gaia
Hammer, and the Partisan is not much more powerful than the Javelin you stole
before you even got a Dragoon in the first place. This makes them noteably
less powerful than the Knight (whose Icebrand and Flametongue swords can be
swapped around mid-battle for elemental might) and the Samurai catches up just
before the final boss of this dungeon.

Mage characters will see !Black re-appearing as the ultimate offensive force.
Titan is still very useful for crowd control, Golem is a good idea even versus
some random encounters (such as fighting dragons) and Catoblepas sees a few
uses in the dungeon.

Going up will get you to the second floor. Two chests here; the left one
contains an Ether, the right one a Diamond Shield. Both should be pretty
useless by now.

On the third floor, you'll run into a dead end. An old friend helps us out,
showing us the true form of Exdeath's castle. Gross. The Warriors of Dawn are
dead.

  3rd Floor (illusion lifted):
  35 % Twin Lizard x 2, Blind Wolf, Hellraiser
  35 % Twin Lizard x 2
  30 % Reflect Mage x 3

  4th Floor & 10th Floor:
  35 % Magic Dragon
  35 % Magic Dragon, Twin Lizard, Reflect Mage
  23 % Magic Dragon x 3, Hellraiser, Blind Wolf
   6 % Black Warlock

Magic Dragons are neat. They're sturdy (having 2900 HP) and cast three Blue
spells you may not have at this point: Aeroga, Off-Guard and Level 2 Old. Learn
all three if you haven't. Magic Dragons are weak to Poison- and Wind-elemental
attacks, so Bio and Aeroga (both can be boosted) kill them off relatively
quickly. Level 3 Flare and Level 4 Graviga also work like a charm. Beware:
Aeroga can deal over 500 damage to a single target. 

Black Warlocks are your source for neat staves, and are quite dangerous in
addition. They have a rare Judgment Staff you can steal, and drop a rare Power
Staff when killed. They largely use annoyer tactics when they're not alone;
Confuse, Drain, Stop and Slowga is what they'll cast in addition to using
physical attacks. When alone though, the Black Warlock will tap into its
darkest arts and start using Death, Break and Banish. Banish sets Death, by the
way, to non-Heavy targets. These vile mages can be Confused, Stopped and
Silenced, all of which is a good idea; Level 3 Flare can be used for damage.

You really want that Judgment Staff; it's a better weapon than the Staff of
Light since it boosts Magic Power by 3 instead of 2, and it can be used as an
item to cast Dispel. When used in this fashion, it does NOT break, effectively
giving you access to the Dispel spell through this Staff. It can be used to
remove the inherent Protect and Shell status on Gil Turtle, making hurting it
two times as easy. The Power Staff sets Battle Power to 0 and casts Berserk
instead of dealing damage. Mildly useless. When Stealing, Time Slip, Sleep and
Stop can be used to keep the Black Warlock subdued and not have it cast instant
death spells all the time.

On the fourth floor, there's a metallic switch on the wall you'll need to flip
in order to get to a chest containing an Ice Shield, the best normal defensive
shield so far. It equals the Flame Shield in every way, though it absorbs Ice
rather than Fire (big surprise there). Better for random encounters than any
other option, though I'd still go for Aegis Shield versus bosses. This is also
the first floor you can encounter Black Warlocks.

5th Floor, 11th Floor:
35 % Black Warlock x 2
35 % Black Warlock x 2, Reflect Mage
23 % Adamantite Golem, Hellraiser x 3
6  % Adamantite Golem x 2

Adamantite Golem are what you'd expect. They attack physically with great
strength and take hits well. They're weak to Lightning-elemental attacks
(which is odd; Adamantite in our world equals Diamond, and Diamond equipment
halves damage done by Lightning. Oh well, shucks if I care) and can be
instantly dispatched by a Gold Needle like all stone-based monsters. They make
this dungeon's best Catch/Release monster for random encounters as well,
performing a powerful physical attack.

On the fifth floor, there's a hidden passage that is nothing but a shortcut.
Featureless in all other regards.

6th Floor, 12th Floor:
35 % Adamantite Golem x 2
35 % Adamantite Golem, Black Warlock, Reflect Mage
23 % Bandercoeurl x 2, Black Warlock
6  % Bandercoeurl, Blind Wolf x 2

Bandercoeurl...hey, did you know that the Coeurl is a fictional alien race of
predators created by the late science fiction novelist A. E. van Vogt
(1912-2000)? It's true. Within the Final Fantasy series, they're feared for
their spellcasting abilities, most notably their tendency for Death-setting
attacks which they employ with their large whiskers. These Bandercoeurls don't
have visible whiskers, but they DO have the Blaster attack they can use. This
attack targets a single character and either sets Paralyze (good) or Death
(bad). They're weak to Fire-elemental attacks.

The sixth floor has lava! You can access the chest containing an Elixir without
much problems, but to get to the hidden chest containing a Hayate Bow you need
to cross the lava. The Geomancer's Light Step ability or casting Float on the
entire party will save you from pain and ridicule. Get into the lava at
whatever descenscion that's closest to you and get into the bottom-right
corner. There's a hidden passage taking you straight to the chest.

7th Floor:
35 % Bandercoeurl, Blind Wolf x 2
35 % Iron Fist x 2
23 % Red Dragon, Blue Dragon
6  % Red Dragon

You've met the Red and Yellow variety (probably), but the Blue Dragon is a new
one.

Blue Dragon
Level: 38, HP: 6900, MP: 1000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 5
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 30%
Steal: Cottage (rare), Dragon Fang (common)
Win: Dragon Fang (rare)
Absorbs: Ice
Nullifies: Earth
Status: Float (always)
Creature: Dragon
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Berserk, Silence, Slow,
  Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Frost, Ice Storm

This Ice-elemental dragon has no elemental weaknesses but uses and absorbs
Ice-elemental attacks. Frost and Ice Storm are both powerful MT Ice-elemental
attacks, and the Blue Dragon may also attack physically. With 6900 HP, it'll be
a while before you can kill it with straight attacks. Ice Storm is an
extremely powerful attack that can deal around 550 damage to all characters,
and Frost will deal around 250 damage to all characters while setting Sap.
Your Ice Shield makes one character absorb that damage, and Flame Rings will
negate the damage as well.

The Blue Dragon is vulnerable to Death, Petrify and Stop and lacks a Heavy
nature, so while you can keep them at bay with Romeo's Ballad and the like,
Break, Break Spellblade effects and Catoblepas' Demon Eye can instantly kill
them. Break Spellblade effects are best, since Blue Dragons will avoid many
blockable spells sent their way. You can steal common Dragon Fangs from them.

The Red Dragon was a powerful guardian of two Barrier Tower chests earlier, but
now that they're random encounters they haven't weakened in the slightest.
You'll be a bit more fit to take them on head-to-head, but they can still pose
a good amount of problems. If you haven't learned Level 3 Flare yet, a
combination of !Control and the Reflect spell (see the Barrier Tower section
for more info) can net you the spell. Boosted Blizzaga spells are extremely
powerful versus the Red Dragon, else Requiem and Gaia's Wrath also get the job
done. As you should still know, they attack with physical attacks and Atomic
Ray, an MT Fire- elemental attack.

Iron Fists simply attack physically and may counter your Attacks with a 33 %
chance of using !Counter, which is unblockable, ignores Defense and sets HP
Leak, so don't let them. They're kinda weak for all their bad-assery when it
comes to looks. They also take double damage from the big three, Fire, Ice and
Lightning. You can rarely steal Beast Killers from these cretins, stronger
Whips for your Beastmasters. Beast Killers always deal a critical hit to
creatures with the Magic Beast nature, which include (in this dungeon) Twin
Lizards, Blind Wolves, Hellraisers, Rage, Magic Dragons, Bandercoeurls and
Carbuncle.

The seventh floor: a mini-game! But first, know that from the 7th to the 9th
floor, you'll be encountering the elemental dragons. You can't really do
anything against the Yellow Dragon's Lightning, but the Flame Ring absorbs
Atomic Ray and nullifies Frost and Ice Storm, so you should swap to those if
you have the items. As for abilities and such, !Sing, !Control and !Summon are
all grand.

Anyway, there are two chests here, one path you'll need to take to continue,
and walls. Stand on the skull tile to send the bridge hurrying across the hole.
Press the action button to stop the thing. When you hit a wall, a monster comes
out! The left chest contains an Icebrand (an Ice-elemental Knightsword) and the
right chest contains a Kotetsu Katana. Both are nice to have. Note that the
Icebrand can be used in tandem with an Ice Shield to heal a target.

1 2   3 4

1: Abductor or Imp
2: Oiseaurare or Abductor
3: Jackanapes or Abductor
4: Abductor or Imp

Note that these are not the exact same monsters you encounter someplace else in
the game; Oiseaurare, for example, won't have that awesome rare steal you'll be
able to get later, nor will any fight you complete here make an addition to
your Bestiary. They perform much like their counterparts, though. Should you
want to walk back, standing on the skull tile on the other end will instantly
put the bridge in the right position for you to walk over.

There's a Save Point here, leading you to a room where dragons roam. There are
powerful creatures you'll definitely want to prepare for. !Control is awesome,
and equipping Flame Rings helps protect against Blaze, Frost and Ice Storm. To
the right is a hidden passage leading to a chest with an Elixir, to the left is
a chest with 9900 Gil.

8th Floor:
35 % Adamantite Golem, Black Warlock, Reflect Mage
35 % Yellow Dragon
23 % Red Dragon
6  % Red Dragon, Blue Dragon

9th Floor:
35 % Iron Fist x 2, Black Warlock
35 % Yellow Dragon x 2
23 % Blue Dragon x 3
6  % Adamantite Golem, Hellraiser x 3

Yellow Dragons lack elemental weaknesses, but also the Heavy property. Make
sure you can exploit this weakness, as the fact they can continuously spam
Lightning is a recipe for disaster (though those with Diamond equipment will
only take half damage). Throw Death Potions, Dark Elixirs, Death Claw, Missile,
!Flirt, Graviga around like it's nobodies business. Romeo's Ballad can Stop
them, which is nice. Yellow Dragons make a grand !Catch versus the final battle
of this dungeon, by the way; Lightning deals 25 % maximum HP, and the boss has
quite a lot of it. If you can pick up a Coral Ring after the fight that'd be
grand, but in my opinion shooting for four Coral Rings is simply too bothersome
(fighting Gil Turtle so you can buy four later is less of a bother).

The ninth and tenth floor will have you alternating often. This is where Iron
Fists start appearing. They have a rare Beast Killer Whip for stealing, a Whip
which may randomly Paralyze the target (like so many Whips) but will also
always deal a critical hit to Magic Beasts, making them quite powerful. Go up
and down again to find yourself in a room full of lava. Again, Light Step or
Float are a must here. Walk to the far right and go up the stairs to grab the
chest containing 8000 Gil. Go back and go up the other stairway open to you.
To the left lies a field with skull tiles, rigged with trap floors. The
Geomancer's Find Pits is the only thing that allows you to spot them before you
tumble down.

    2
   xxx
  x00xx
 xxxxxxx
1x0x0xxx4
 xxxxx0x
  xxx0x
   xxx
    3

1: Entry point
2: Warp tile to Carbuncle
3: Tile to re-connect passageway
4: Chest with Twin Lance
0: Trap floor

To the far right is a chest containing a Twin Lance. If you want to continue,
take the bottom skull tile; if you want to get your hands on a new summon
beast, take the top one. You'll be warped straight to Carbuncle, whose form
may surprise. If you have less than four Reflect Rings, send in a Thief! Make
sure that you can heal and have a Mystic Knight or Summoner ready to inflict
the Petrify status. 

"I'll join you - if you're stronger than me. Come on, show me what you got!"

Carbuncle
Level: 44, HP: 15000, MP: 10000
Defense: 50, Magic Defense: 50
Evasion: 70%, Magic Evasion: 50%
Steal: Goliath Tonic (rare), Reflect Ring (common)**
Win: Turtle Shell (rare)
Nullifies: Earth
Status: Float, Reflect (always)
Creature: Heavy, Magic Beast
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Petrify*, Toad*, Mini*, Poison*, Darkness, Old*, Sleep*,
  Paralyze*, Confuse*, Silence, Stop*, Slow
Attacks: Cura, Fira, Blizzara, Thundara, Bio, Stop, Confuse, Break, Banish,
  Death

*: only when in healing form
**: you can steal succesfully from both forms

Carbuncle will cast any of the Black -ra spells for three turns... on himself.
Since these spell bounce off, they'll hit one of your characters instead. After
three offensive spells, he'll turn into another monster. Not that you'll see
this happening; he just does. This other form - I'll call it his healing form -
will cast Cura on himself with rather pitiful effects. In this form, he stops
Floating, his Reflect barrier is gone, he's weak to all elements and vulnerable
to a LOT more status ailments (as described above). The turn after Cura, he'll
change back into his normal, hard-to-damage self and he will start casting
three more offensive spells. When below 10000 HP, he'll cast Bio, Stop and
Confuse. When below 3000 HP, he'll cast Break, Banish and Death, easily the
most dangerous spells he could use.

Here's the deal. Carbuncle is almost impossible to damage by any large extent.
His Defense and Magic Defense both are extremely high, he has no elemental
weaknesses, is immune to Titan's Gaia's Wrath and is inherently Reflective.
However, his healing form is when the getting's good. He'll drop a lot of
status immunities, his Heavy nature and his Reflect status His defensive and
evasive properties will plummet; he'll just keep 10% Evasion and a bit of
Defense.

You'll just have to sit back and heal and buff up when Carbuncle is in his
offensive mode. Casting Shell on all characters really helps. Flame Rings
protect against Fira and Blizzara, so that's a good thing. Silence Spellblade
effects will keep Carbuncle from casting spells, but since his Evade is rather
high you might want to combine !Aim or !Rapid Fire with !Spellblade to make
sure it hits. You can take the opportunity to steal a Reflect Ring from the
fiend.

When Carbuncle has cast Cura, act quickly. If you got the options available to
you, Carbuncle should never reach his offensive state again. Since Carbuncle's
healing form is another monster altogehter as far as the game is concerned,
you'll also be able to nab the items of the healing form Carbuncle, which
include another common Reflect Ring and a rare Goliath Tonic.

Missile, Graviga, Death Claw and Dark Elixir all work all of a sudden. You can
use Romeo's Ballad, Alluring Air, Stop or Sleep to prevent Carbuncle from ever
leaving this weakened state. Now, pound on him. Break and Break spellblade
effects end the battle instantly. Now that Carbuncle lost his Heavy nature and
has gained a weakness against all elements, Spellblade effects of Bio and the
-aga spells also kill him instantly. A Dark Elixir or Death Claw followed by
the slightest of attacks kills him. Boosted -aga spells deliver massive damage.
The battle should be over as soon as you saw Cura appear.

Carbuncle, as a Summon, will set Reflect to all allies; note that Carbuncle is
a level 4 Summon spell, so those with level 3 !Summon won't be able to
conjure him.

When you're done, descend. You'll get onto another skull warp tile. Get back to
the skull tile platform, avoid the pitfalls, stand on the bottom tile and
continue.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.37.2  The fourth fight with Gilgamesh
**********************************

There's a Save Point here, which you'll want to use. On the eleventh floor,
there's a prominent chest in the middle of the room. If you try to open it,
you'll be forced to fight Gilgamesh again. If you don't, you can avoid the
battle, but you'll also miss out on the three pieces of Genji equipment you
haven't obtained yet. I'd definitely open the chest. Not now, though; to the
right is a stairway going up to two chests containing a Fuma Shuriken and a
Partisan (lame). To continue, pick the chest (or not) and walk up the stairs
only to be halted by the general of Exdeath's army (or not).

"Enough expository banter! Now we fight like men! And ladies! And ladies who
dress like men!"

Gilgamesh
Level: 53, HP: 55000, MP: 2000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 15
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 30%
Steal: Gauntlet/Nothing* (rare), Hi-Potion/Genji Helm* (common)
Win: Excalipoor (always)
Status: Float
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack, Dischord, Lilliputian Lyric, Dancehall Daze,
  Flash, Hurricane, Pond's Chorus, Time Slip, Rocket Punch

*: When morphed

That's a LOT of HP Gilgamesh has, but know that he'll have written has own
death sentence once he starts yappin', which is starts when you have dealt
around 13000 HP worth of damage. Gilgamesh' strategy relies mostly on setting
annoying status ailments and weakening you while attacking with physical
attacks. He'll use all attacks more or less randomly, so I won't bother listing
his exact AI script.

Summon Golem's Earthen Wall and cast Hastega to push the battle considerably in
your odds. Wearing Bone Mail or a Ribbon really helps in this battle as they'll
stop most everything Gilgamesh uses to annoy you. You CAN'T steal the Genji
Helm just yet; this'll come later.

If you're looking for a good way to damage Gilgamesh, boosted Black -aga spells
are by far the best way to damage Gilly. Dual Twin Lances also get the job done
nicely. Your Heavy Armor character(s) will have to sit back and be happy with
dealing less damage; Two-Handed Icebrand or Two-Handed Greatsword with Drain
Spellblade effects are probably your best options.

After taking enough damage, Gilgamesh will start talking. You can actually stop
dealing damage now; he'll go through his lines every turn now, adding insult to
injury every time. In the middle of his speech, he'll transform into his eight-
armed ultra form and attack you with one of the twelve weapons from the Sealed
Castle of Kuza, the Excalibur. Now that Gilgamesh is morphed, go for the steal!
He's got a common Genji Helm this time. Keep defending and healing until what
turns out to be a common enemy takes care of the fight.

The Excalipoor is an odd weapon. It has 100 Battle Power, yet deals 1 damage?
The truth is that the Excalipoor is actually a very weak weapon, dealing 1
damage every hit. However, its power when used with Goblin Punch or when
Thrown is the listed 100, so for both you could utilize the weapon. A 100
Battle Power Goblin Punch or even a 200 Battle Power Goblin Punch (with
Two-Handed) isn't that powerful, though; when paired with Barehanded to boost
Strength, it does become a fair force to be reckoned with; another option would
be a Knight with !Blue. The Genji Helm is just a very good helmet that also
protects against the Mini and Confuse status ailments.

Continue. On the 13th floor, an unlucky number, does the dark mage Exdeath try
to destroy yet another world by breaking its foundations. Its goals are
unknown, but the effects of its actions are not. It has caused the deaths and
destruction of more things precious than your heart can manage to sum up. It
must pay; this must be the end of his conquests; it must be destroyed.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.37.3  The fight with the dark warlock Exdeath
**********************************

"Believe what you wish. Simple-minded fools such as yourselves could never hope
to understand my motives. It matters not. I will tolerate no more
interruptions!"

Exdeath
Level: 66, HP: 32768, MP: 32768
Defense: 25, Magic Defense: 25
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 85%
Steal: Judgment Staff (rare), Elixir (common)
Nullifies: Poison
Weakness: Holy
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Vacuum Wave
Special Technique Effect: 150 % damage, adds the Sap status
Vulnerable to: Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Vacuum Wave, Dispel, Bio, Firaga, Blizzaga, Thundaga, Doom,
  Level 3 Flare, Haste, Gravity, Meteor, Reverse Polarity, 100 Gs, Blaze,
  Earth Shaker, Hurricane, Zombie Breath

Exdeath will be a supreme test of your strength and wisdom; its HP is by far
the highest of any enemy you've had to defeat so far, and its attacks vary
greatly. Its broad array of attacks are employed when it starts off. You've
seen most of them, though Exdeath uses them with great effect. Doom is a Blue
spell you can learn from the fiend; it sets a timer on a target of 30 units. 
When the countdown reaches 0, the target dies. Doom doesn't work on Heavy 
targets. Opponents defeated with Doom yield no Experience points or dropped
items. 100 Gs removes the Float status. Zombie Breath is an MT barrier-piercing
non-elemental attack which, should it kill any of your characters, turns it
into a Zombie. If the character is wearing an Angel Ring or is otherwise
protected against the Zombie status ailment, he or she will just die. So,
y'know, good news there.

The effects of Doom are annoying, and there's no way to get rid of it. It's
possible to defeat Exdeath before the timer runs out, but you'll need to be
powerful indeed. Setting Haste on any person with a Countdown will halve the
number (setting Slow will double it), but that shouldn't stop you from using
Hastega. If you really want to learn it now, Return is a good spell for that;
since Exdeath will cast Doom 66% of the time on his first turn but almost never
later in the battle, you could simply cast Return until he has cast Doom on your
Learning character. Alternatively, you could cast Return until Exdeath starts
off with a physical attack to circumvent Doom altogether.

When Exdeath hits 16000 HP (around halfway), it'll get more offensive but also
more linear. It'll use physical attacks, !Vacuum Wave and the -aga spells only,
though it'll often take two actions in a row. In this stage, a combination of
Golem's Earthen Wall or the Image status and the Reflect status completely
nullify all of its attempts of damaging you.

When reaching 7000 HP, it'll seriously weaken and stop taking two actions in a
row; as a last resort, it'll try his hand on the ultimate Time magic, Meteor.
This is an extremely powerful attack that hits four times four random targets
on your side for powerful barrier-piercing non-elemental damage. Reflect status
is ignored by Meteor.

An interesting point is that Exdeath here was supposed to have inherent Regen
set, but it isn't active in this battle. Its regenerative abilities are even an
important plot point if you remember the reason he was sealed in Bartz' world
in the first place; oh well.

There are a few tactics you can use. Heavy Armor characters, I'm sad to say,
won't be all that useful in this fight. Their physical attacks will cause
Exdeath to cast Dispel more often than is necessary. Their damage will be sub-
par. Mystic Knights with Dual-Wield or Two-Handed can cast Drain on their
weapons and become self-sustaining throughout the fight. !Blue is a worthwhile
ability on Knights and such; White Wind and Goblin Punch benefit greatly,
Vampire, Dark Spark and Off-Guard are nice benefits as well.

Yes! Mages are the best in this fight. Boosted -aga spells deal around 2000
damage. When you have a party covered in the Reflect status (Reflect Rings or
Caruncle's Ruby Light) you can cast the spell on all four targets. 3000 damage
divided by two (due to MT casting) but bounced off to Exdeath four times (due
to there being four targets) equals a lot of damage. This also works with the
Blue Aeroga spell, only even boosted this'll get you 1500/3000 damage-ish.

Anybody with the !Mix ability also is able to deal a lot of damage, and this
one doesn't depend on the Reflect status. First, drink a Goliath Tonic. If you
lack the !Drink command, you can mix an Elixir with a Dragon Fang for the same
result. Now, mix a Dragon Fang with some Holy Water to produce the Holy Breath
attack, a Holy-elemental attack that deals as much damage as the caster has at
that point. Your characters temporarily bloated amount of HP paired together
with the fact Holy Breath deals double damage as it's Holy-elemental... again,
around 4000 damage. This works best on those with high Stamina, so Monks are
ideal for this. !Mix also grants you the ability to revive fallen characters
completely healed (both HP and MP) by combining a Potion with a Phoenix Down,
and completely heal themselves with a Succubus Kiss (Turtle Shell + Maiden's
Kiss). !Mix really rocks, never forget it.

Clothes characters can keep themselves busy in this battle, sure. First, the
Beastmaster's !Catch ability allowed it to capture a Yellow Dragon before the
fight. When released, its Lightning attack will deal exactly 25 % of Exdeath's
maximum HP, being 8192. You could even - when you disregard the party ethics
I've been wanting you to follow - have four Beastmasters release four Yellow
Dragons for a quick win. Adamantite Golems are also very powerful. Dual Twin
Lances are quite efficient as well; set Berserk with the White Mage or through
!Mix and watch the damage fly. Exdeath has some Defense though; you can remove
some of it with Off-Guard or Turtle Soup (Mix an Antidote with a Turtle Shell).

NEVER SET SLOW, as Exdeath will retort with a Haste spell every time. Slow and
Slowga spells are out. You could theoretically, dunno, !Catch a Tarantula and
get it to use a Thread attack to set Slow and not have Exdeath counter it. In
addition, you can set Reflect on Exdeath, bounce the Slow spell from one of
your Reflective characters, have Exdeath bounce HIS Haste spell off his own
Reflect barrier onto one of your characters. Man, fun stuff.

Summon Golem for physical protection and Carbuncle for magical protection and
offense increase for -aga casters. Have your physical characters do whatever
they wanna do and cast -aga spells on all four characters to deal your massive
damage. Exdeath should be a walk in the park if you have the abilities to pull
this one off.

Anyway, Exdeath is one of the tougher battles you've faced so far, but nothing
extremely difficult. When you've defeated Exdeath, the three crystals of
Galuf's world shatter...

...


-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.38.1  A second prelude; the fight with Antlion
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Antlion (#286)

You appear outside of Castle Tycoon. The scenery has notably changed; the
meteorite is gone, but with a clear path you can no longer travel to the cave
you found when trying to get to the Wind Shrine so long ago. But these things
don't matter right now; Exdeath is gone and we're back home when we were told
we would never be able to return. How? At any rate, Castle Tycoon looks
inviting. Let's win some information there.

NOTICE: de-equip Lenna and Faris at this point.

Note that you can walk all you want on the Overworld Map; no enemies here.

The information bit'll have to come later; it seems both Lenna and Faris are
swept away by Tycoon's royal staff. A few moments later, both sisters are smack
dab in their thrones, dancers are dancing and you can't talk to either of them.
Their emotions at this point can only be called a mystery. Krile, however, runs
off to lament on the balcony, which isn't odd considering this entire situation
is bizarre.

Bartz gets the hots for Faris again. Don't even think about it. She's got some
battle scars, dude. If you wanna date Faris, rumor is you'll have to defeat
her seven evil ex-boyfriends, and they're ALL pirates.

Before you talk to her, you can go to the left door and enter the King's room
which you couldn't enter earlier. Here, you can see his diary, containing the
story of the day Sarisa refused to mount Hiryu. If you slept at Castle Tycoon
after Galuf left, you have already seen this cutscene and it won't show again.
If not, now's the time. The cutscene will only trigger if you already heard the
story about Sarisa from Jenica; the old hag can be found in the right wing of
the castle. If you never found the treasures here, you can do so now; but a
soldier blocks the pathway to where the Diamond Bell, Ashura and Shuriken were
stored, so you can't get 'em now.

After you've found Krile on the balcony, you have no choice but to leave with a
two-man party.

"Well, things worked out just fine in the end. What a relief! ...But something
about the sky seems kind of strange, don't you think? And it's only right above
Tycoon..."

"As legend has it, a thousand years ago, the skies over Tycoon were rent
asunder."

Before you can really leave, you're rudely informed by the fact a bridge over
the river to the south-west is finished. On the Overworld Map, walk to the
bridge and cross it (it's what it's there for). To the north lies the Pirate
Cave, where you'll find Boko. So you do. He's got a little family too; could it
be the female Chocobo from Northern Lake? Meh, not all species are nearing
extinction in this game.

...or aren't they?

Anyway, you find yourself on Boko on the Overworld Map. The thing here is that
Chocobo's are able to cross rivers. You can get off and enter Pirate Cave, but
there's really no point in doing so. There are no enemies either.

Take Boko to Castle Tycoon and past it, going north and west where possible.
The party's still going. You'll pass Torna Canal which lies to the north and
the peninsula which lies to the south. Eventually, you come across the town of
Tule. There's nothing new here for you to do but gather some information. Of
special notice is some guy mentioning a 'mutant turtle' has been spotted in the
cave to the west. This may be either Ghido or Gil Turtle...let's check it out!

When saying 'no' to the girl at the counter of the Greenhorn's Club, you'll get
a lesson in being a Freelancer. Also, the Mime Job is mentioned, which in the
pre-GBA versions was the last Job you could obtain.

If you missed the Piano here, make sure to play it. Or if you didn't miss it,
you can use it as an excuse to get the girls to dance for you.

When you're done, mount Boko again. Cross the river to find a small passageway
in between two mountain ranges. Now, you'll leave the Map. Take a few steps to
find yourself within a battle versus the Antlion, a giant insectiod monster
that lures foes inside his sand trap to weaken and devour them.

Antlion
Level: 34, HP: 8100, MP: 1000
Defense: 20, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Hi-Potion (common)
Win: Cottage (always)
Nullifies: Earth
Weakness: Water
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Old, Sleep, Berserk, Slow
Attacks: Battle, !Critical Attack, Digestive Acid, Dischord, Flee

After a powerful opponent such as Exdeath, the Antlion can be a surprising
annoyance. Since you fight it with only Bartz and Krile, you attack less and
your options are limited. Also, Antlion continues to weaken you slowly with a
combination of Dischord, Digestive Acid and physical attacks. When Antlion
dies, he'll use Flee to rob you of your Cottage.

Cast Berserk on Antlion. And Slow. And Old. And the rest, all status ailments
help. Time Slip is grand. But mainly just Berserk, as the status stops Dischord
from appearing and prevents Flee, giving you your well-deserved Cottage (and
3000 Gil!). Continuous and wise application of Sleep may also do the trick
(Spellblade never misses).

If Berserk from White, using the Power Staff or mixing a Bacchus' Cider (Holy
Water + Turtle Shell) isn't an option for some reason, you'll have to rough
things out. HP-based attacks and fixed damage attacks disregard level, so you
could always rely on those. Holy Breath (Dragon Fang + Holy Water) and Dragon
Breath (Dragon Fang x 2) after a Goliath Tonic both work very well, as does
1000 Needles. Aside from that, getting in one or two boosted -aga spells when
the caster isn't yet affected by Dischord does some real damage, as do dual
Twin Lances or a Thrown Water Scroll.

The fight's ultimately an easy one. After the fight, you'll have to wait a
while, try to grab the rope four times to re-enter the surface and find Faris
waiting for you.

Faris joined the party!

Know that a bit later in the game you can take Faris to the Pirate Cave for a
surprising yet awesome gift; this can't be triggered yet, though. Continue on;
there is nowhere you can go but to the cave. The mutant turtle turns out to be
of the friendly variety. Ghido explains...

Once upon a time, the earth was one. However, a dreadful evil bearing the name
Enuo. Enuo was able to control the Void, the ultimate power, the very
antithesis of existence. Though Enuo was defeated, the Void lingered, and the
people living on the planet were forced to split the world in two by splitting
the crystals in two. The two halves were sent far away from each other across
time, dimension and space. In between lies the Interdimensional Rift, where the
Void could be sealed away as it could not be destroyed; one cannot undo what
isn't. Exdeath's goal was holding control over the Void, and thus control over
the world. In order to do this, it needed to gain access to the Void in the
first place.

Anyway, it seems Exdeath tricked us. It also seems its plot powers still far
surpass that of our heroes, no matter how often we smack its ass in battle. At
that moment, the Interdimensional Rift that was sealed by the divided worlds
re-appears, no longer bound by its former cage. The Void appears right above
Castle Tycoon, just as it did 1000 years ago.

Ghido is a strong warrior, it seems.

"You think I sat around seven centuries munching on pizza?"

At any rate, not strong enough, and with Bartz, Krile and Faris he is blasted
out of his refuge to find himself near the Library of the Ancients. Here, the
scholars of the Library and the scholars of Surgate Castle have found each
other in chaotic times to combine the Sealed Tome.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.39.1  Mission statement
**********************************

Location: The Overworld Map
Features: Mana's Paean (Song spell)

Here's the deal. Our mission is twofold. One: Exdeath needs to be stopped. Two:
the Void needs to be dealt with. Exdeath has retreated into the
Interdimensional Rift where it is slowly learning to master the Void, but
according to Ghido we'll never make it to him as Exdeath isn't the only evil
creature that is and was. We'll need to harness the power of the 12 Legendary
Weapons, the very same that have proven to be able to defeat Enuo.

The book begins to speak...

"After Enuo's defeat, the weapons of legend were sealed within the Castle Kuza.
To break the seals, the four tablets must be assembled.

One rests alongside spirits of the past, blessed by soil...
One rests within an island shrine, kissed by wind...
One rests beneath the ocean's floor, engulfed by flames...
One rests beyond the river's torrents, protected by water...

Along with the keys to open the seals - the four tablets - are sealed our
servants. If the tablets are moved, our servants will awaken...

The ultimate spells of white and black...
The magic of time and space, Meteor...
The sea king, Leviathan... and the dragon king, Bahamut...

Present this book unto the gate and the way to the seals will be opened."

When all is said and done, the scholars have a lot of useful information about
this brave new world. On the roof of the Library, the right scholar can teach
you Mana's Paean, a song that will slowly increase your Magic Power in battle.
A paean is a solemn thanksgiving, in this case to the source of mana; in
return, this source bestows you with greater arcane might. Make sure to get it
now, you won't be able to learn this again at a later date.

If you haven't learned Level 5 Death yet, the Pages are still available in the
dungeon part of the Library; you can manipulate your level with Dark Spark if
your level isn't right. When you're done here, leave this place.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.39.2  Preparation for the Pyramid in the Desert of Shifting Sands
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Sleepy (#135), Triffid (#136), Hedgehog (#137), Python (#138), Shadow (#139),
  Elm Gigas (#140), Desertpede (#141), Bulette (#142), Slug (#154), Gloom Widow
  (#155), Mykale (#156)

  Container contents:
  Cottage

  Miscellaneous items:
  Dark Matter (rare drop from Desertpede), Death Sickle (rare Mykale steal),
  Healing Staff (common steal from Sleepy), Brave Blade OR Chicken Knife

  Blue spells:
  1000 Needles, Aeroga, Dark Spark, Off-Guard, Vampire

Walking around here may trigger encounters with all sorts of normal-like yet
strong critters. Since Overworld enemies generally aren't that interesting,
allow me to describe them as a whole...

Sleepies cast Sleep a lot, but have little HP. They have a common Healing Staff
for you to steal... not so powerful now, but interesting anyway. You can now
Dual-Wield them if you set Equip Rods on a Ninja. So awesome. Triffids attack
physically and cast Berserk on themselves. They are the only powerful !Catch
here, if you must know. Hedgehogs can be controlled into using 1000 Needles;
they'll never use it normally, but they will respond to any !Attack with a
Needle spell (the 50/50 Darkness/Silence one). They don't have the MP for the
1000 Needles attack, so use an Ether if you must. Pythons randomly use Vampire 
and Entangle when struck by a !Fight command, but they won't have the MP for 
the Vampire spell. Shadows attack physically, but can be Controlled for Vampire,
Off-Guard and Dark Spark. They don't have any MP though, so feed them an Ether
if you want to learn anything from them. 

Elm Gigas is the most dangerous one here; it may randomly use Aeroga, which
deals around 900 damage to a single target. It has a whopping 4170 HP as well,
which is quite a lot for a random encounters. Fortunately it's not Heavy, nor
are they immune to Break spells or Catoblepas' piercing gaze. In addition, it 
starts the battle snoozing; Sleep is set! Stick to magical attacks and you 
should not wake it up before you kill it. You can Control them so you can 
force Aeroga out of them for you to learn, but note that they won't respond to
your commands until you've lifted Sleep from them.

Random note: Elm Gigas is one of two creatures with removable Float! Use the
Judgment Staff to get rid of it (or cast Dispel, when later in the game). While
the Elm Gigas will retain his immunity to Earth-elemental attacks, it now can
be hit by Squirrel and Wild Boars from the !Animals command. Oh, the insight I
present thee... Anyway, use Missile, Graviga, Stop and other things of that
nature to kill Elm Gigas before he kills a character with Aeroga.

Slugs, Gloom Widows and Mykales won't start appearing until the forests around
Moore; the Mykales are interesting because they can teach you Aero, 1000
Needles and Lilluptian Lyric when !Controlled; in addition, they may randomly
use Moon Flute on the party. The rarely stolen Death Sickle is a sweet thing;
if you got bored waiting for the Harvester to drop one, here's your chance. The
Slugs may randomly use Slimer; the Gloom Widow's !Needle attack sets Paralyze.
The Slugs are weak to Fire, the Gloom Widows are weak to Water. Ninjas with
boosted Magic Power will have a field day in these forests. Level 3 Flare hits
all three monsters, and is supremely powerful.

North of the Library of the Ancients lies Castle Surgate! While mainly just
filled with confused NPCs, there is a single treasure here you can now collect
you couldn't collect earlier. Find the library lady and help her out once more
(the books and locations are the same as last time). Follow her, and go down
the stairs. Before you took on Exdeath, a purple-robed man was here, talking
about Catoblepas. Now that he's gone, check the crate positioned against the
wall in the back; it's a Cottage! If you released Lone Wolf, the crate will be
EMPTY! This Cottage is not taken into account when your treasure % is given.

Trivia: when looking at the left side of the A-C shelf now, Lenna will still
make an appearance.

Even further to the north lies Karnak; again, nothing here but NPCs talking
about how the world has changed, and about how Dwarves exist. Queen Karnak is
still bed-ridden at the Inn; if you missed the piano here earlier, now's your
chance... likewise for the Flame Rod in the barrel on the city wall.

West of the Library lies what once was the Great Forest of Moore. Burned down
by Exdeath and being pushed away by the mountains of a rivaling world, the
Guardian Tree is about the only thing still standing. The Desert has stopped
being annoying on the navigational side; a positive side-effect of the world's
decay. It's like a heritage. Before you enter the Pyramid, travel across the
desert to find the town of Moore.

In the desert, Bulettes and Desertpedes appear; Bulettes are quite physically
evasive. They have a powerful special technique called !Body Blow which is
unblockable, ignores Defense and sets Paralyze, so kill it quicky. Desertpedes
have relatively strong Quicksand attacks, but you'll only see it when you
Confuse or Control them, or Catch one for later Release. They rarely drop Dark
Matter, which is grand; kill them easily with Level 5 Death. Aqua Breath deals
800% damage to them since they're Desert creatures.

Here, the townspeople are shocked by the disappearance of the great forest, but
they're good-natured enough about it. There is still a piano here if you forgot
it earlier. Also, a haunted shed has been unlocked. Go around the Pub and enter
the shed on the blind side. Here, there's a hidden passage through the trees
even your Thief cannot see.

        x
        x
        x
      xxxxx
      x   x
      x   x
      x   x
  xxx x   x
  x x x   x
  xxxxxxxxx
    x x
    x x
    x
    x
    0

"Think you're brave? Take what's in the crate on the left. If you're a coward,
take what's in the one on the right."

The left chest contains the Brave Blade, one of the strongest weapons in the 
entire game. It's non-elemental and gives a +5 on Strength. However, every time
you run from a battle or use !Flee, !Smoke or the Teleport spell to escape, the
Battle Power of this weapon decreases by 1. Every time you have run in the past
has already affected this weapon, and actions taken after you've obtained the
blade will continue to affect it. Note that through !Throw or with Goblin
Punch, Battle Power will always be 150 no matter how often you ran.

The right chest contains the Chicken Knife. Its power increases by 1 every two
times you run or use !Flee, !Smoke or Teleport, to a maximum of 127. Since the
Chicken Knife's damage formula also takes Agility into account, the Chicken
Knife turns out to be even more powerful in a normal game than the Brave Blade.
Also, fleeing is never a problem anymore. The Chicken Knife gives a +5 on
Agility and has a 25 % chance of using !Flee rather than !Attack, escaping the
battle. With !Focus, !Rapid Fire, !Dance or !Mug, this will never happen; with
!Aim, it still can. Note that through !Throw or with Goblin Punch, Battle Power
will always be 1 no matter how often you ran.

I suggest you go for the Brave Blade if you want to feel like a righteous
bad-ass and go for the Chicken Knife if you want a truly convenient weapon to
have. If you go with the Chicken Knife, make sure to power it up; you can head
into the desert and use !Flee until you've maxed out the weapon. If don't want
to commit to either camp, the Brave Blade provides a solid Goblin Punch and
the Chicken Knife provides a sweet Agility boost. 

A Two-Handed Knight with a Brave Blade is simply monstrous at this point, as is
about any physical Job with the Chicken Knife (albeit, to a lesser extent).

Time to visit the Pyramid. Maybe we can buy mini-pyramids to decorate our
cottages, but let's make sure they're not mini-cursed.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.40.1  The Pyramid of Moore; the Earth tablet
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Objet d'Art (#99), Black Warlock (#128), Bandercoeurl (#130), Lamia Queen
  (#143), Rajiformes (#144), Ushtabi (#145), Archeosaur (#146), Zephyrus (#147),
  Mummy (#148), Aspis (#149), Mecha Head (#150), The Damned (#151), Grand Mummy
  (#152), Sekhmet (#153), Steel Fist (#181), Melusine (#287), Gargoyle (#288)

  Container contents:
  8000 Gil, 9000 Gil, 10000 Gil, 12000 Gil, Crystal Armor, Ice Shield, Cursed
  Ring, Flame Shield, White Robe, Dark Matter x 6, Elixir x 4, Gaia Hammer,
  Cottage, Black Robe, Black Garb, Gold Hairpin, Ribbon, Protect Ring

  Miscellaneous items:
  Judgment Staff (rare Black Warlock steal), Power Staff (rare Black Warlock
  drop), Thief's Gloves (rare steal from Sekhmet), Crystal Armor (rare Sekhmet
  drop), Lamia's Tiara (rare drop from Lamia Queen), Thornlet (rare steal from
  Lamia Queen), Dragon Fang (guaranteed Archeosaur drop), Kaiser Knuckles (rare
  drop from Steel Fist), Elixir (rare Zephyrus drop and rare Zephyrus steal),
  Twin Lance (rare Objet d'Art steal)

  Features:
  Tablet

  Blue spells:
  1000 Needles, Off-Guard, Dark Spark, Level 3 Flare, Aqua Breath, Aeroga,
  Missile, Flame Thrower, ???, Doom

"One rests alongside spirits of the past, blessed by soil..."

As you approach the Pyramid of Moore, the door remains closed. You were warned
that the slabs were protected by gargoyles, and sure enough they're here. They
seem largely inanimate though. Let this be a lesson to you! Spinster's tales!
Bolderdash! Humbug! AN UNDIGESTED BIT OF BEEF, A BLOT OF MUSTARD, A CRUMB OF
CHEESE, A FRAGMENT OF AN UNDERDONE POTATO! Also, as you examine the door, the
Gargoyles attack you.

Gargoyle (x2)
Level: 33, HP: 5000, MP: 300
Defense: 13, Magic Defense: 12
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 35%
Steal: Potion (common), Phoenix Down (rare)
Win: Hi-Potion (rare)
Absorbs: Holy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Vulnerable to: Death, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze, Berserk,
  Silence, Stop, Slow
Can't Evade: Aerial
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Transfusion

These Gargoyles are a nuisance, but not too much. The big thing you need to
remember is that if one has fallen and the other is yet to act, the first thing
it'll do revive the other one. So you either kill them both simultaneously or
you completely screw with their AI script. In the meantime you'll be pelted by
physical attacks like it's nobodies business.

This is an easy battle, so I won't insult your intelligence by talking too long
about the Gargoyles. I'd rather insult your intelligence by questioning the
existence of your academic degrees, lolol. Throw up Golem to stop the physical
attacks. Transfusion won't make an appearance except for 1 33 % chance every
fifth round, so you should just end the battle before they can use it. Flash
can stop their physical onslaught. If you're not sure you can take them out
with MT attacks, you could set Berserk on one and kill the other; they keep
coming back because they revive eachother, see. Sleep is a great way of
stopping their meddlesome attempts at killing you.

Like I said, either use MT attacks or use Berserk. Titan's Gaia's Wrath (whose
is it anyway?) is grand, as are MT -aga spells from the !Black selection. Boost
to your heart's content if you opt for this route, and keep your ST attacks in
check. Level 3 Flare works like a charm. Expect heavier pounding if you utilize
Berserk (you may even scoff at the White magic skillset and use a Power Staff
instead), but with Flash and Golem, there's still no need to worry at all.
Cheap? Sure, but you're the Light Warriors on a mission to save the world.
Being successful is just very important to us all.

When the guardian gargoyles have fallen and we have spent a page from the
Sealed Tomb, we may enter into that most ancient of places, the Pyramid of
Moore. This is quite a long dungeon, so bring plenty of items. The Gold Hairpin
for a Mage is a good idea, his or her MP will be is serious peril of reaching 0
otherwise.

Notice: after this dungeon and some other thing, your party will be once again
filled to the maximum of four. Some players like to keep their levels about
equal, or would rather clear the upcoming dungeon with four characters rather
than three to not miss out on ABP on that fourth party member. It is perfectly
doable to flee from every battle in the pyramid, avoid all chests (or at least
those with guardians), fill your team back up to four characters and return 
here. You'll be forced to face a few Aspis snakes, it is quite difficult
to avoid all roaming Mecha Heads and there's the Mummy x3 formation that 
you'll be forced to take on, but that's it! A Thief with !Flee will come first
every battle, it you're gone before the enemy'll know what happened. If you 
want to preserve your Brave Blade, it's obviously not an option. 

  First floor:
  35 % Lamia Queen x 2
  35 % Lamia Queen
  30 % Ushabti x 6

  Third floor:
  58 % Zephyrus (Dhorme Chimera, Ronkan Knight)
  35 % Lamia Queen, Rajiformes
   6 % Zephyrus (Adamantine Golem, Bio Soldier)

  Fifth floor:
  35 % Sekhmet --> Queen Lamia
  35 % Queen Lamia
  30 % Zephyrus (Ziggurat Gigas, Tunneller)

Note: once you've defeated Sekhmet once, the Queen Lamia formation will appear
70 % of the time

  Sixth floor:
  35 % Rajiformes, Ushabti, Lamia Queen
  35 % Lamia Queen, Rajiformes
  23 % Zephyrus (Adamantine Golem, Bio Soldier)
   6 % Zephyrus (Dhorme Chimera, Ronkan Knight)

  Seventh floor:
  35 % Ushabti, Ushabti, Ushabti, Lamia Queen
  35 % Zephyrus (Adamantine Golem, Bio Soldier)
  23 % Lamia Queen
   6 % Ushabti x 6

  Eighth floor:
  35 % Lamia Queen, Lamia Queen, Ushabti, Ushabti
  35 % Zephyrus (Ziggurat Gigas, Tunneller)
  23 % Lamia Queen, Lamia Queen
   6 % Ushabti x 6

I'll give a quick yet comprehensive lecture on the opponents here. Since this
is a pyramid, it's very old. All monsters therefore are either Undead or
unliving to begin with; all other residents long-since passed away (this with
the exception of its one unique inhabitant, the mystic Sekhmet). The abundant
Undead Lamia Queens are perhaps the most interesting as they rarely drop
Lamia's Tiaras, headgear you haven't seen since the Lonka Ruins. They can use
1000 Needles randomly every second turn, so make sure to learn it if your Blue
Mages still haven't. In addition, you can steal rare Thornlets from them. They
are quite useless, but rare all the same. The Undead Rajiformes has little to
offer except for needless violence and a weakness to Lightning- elemental
attacks, and the living Ushabti constructs can use both Dark Spark and
Off-Guard, though you'll have to feed them an Ether before they can actually
use it.

The most interesting encounter you can have is one with a Zephyrus, a small
fairy that summons other creatures to fight for her. These creatures can be
either an Adamantine Golem, a Bio Soldier, a Ziggurat Gigas or a Tunneller, but
a single Zephyrus can only summon two out of those four (this depends on the
possible monster formations for a given floor). They are all different monsters
than the ones you fought earlier. The only interesting difference besides
improved toughness is the fact that the Tunneller as summoned by Zephyrus may
randomly use Level 3 Flare. Whenever a monster is fighting for the Zephyrus,
she will try her best to buff the creature with recovery and other helpful
magic. Zephyrus are remarkably sturdy given their frail build and tend to evade
a lot of your blows, but Stop and Paralyze can cripple her quickly. It is
almost impossible to manually run from her, so if you're not interested in a
fight you'll have to use !Flee, !Smoke or Teleport spells. Note that none of 
the four creatures she may conjure add to your Bestiary.

The Requiem Song is a must-have for the Pyramid of Moore, as all Lamia Queens,
Rajiformes and all the Damned, Aspis and Archeosaurus monsters will suffer
greatly from its effects. Back !Sing up with high Magic Power. A second caster
is nice to have to deal MT Lightning-elemental damage to the Ushabti enemies,
but a Lightning Scroll will deal sufficient damage to one-shot them all every
encounter. Brave Blade wielders and Chicken Knife users, when powered up, will
deal great amounts of damage. The Pyramid of Moore can be a repetitive dungeon,
but it's not a hard one when you keep an eye out for your HP.

When you enter the Pyramid, there are two paths open to you to the left. You'll
want to take the left-most one first. Go up to find spikes popping up from the
floor. These damage tiles deal 1/24 maximum HP damage to your party and add the
Poison status, even to those wearing the Bone Mail! The Float status and the
Light Step ability circumvent this, but there's no need to resort to these
tactics. The are three buttons on the wall; pressing the left-most one and the
right-most one once will create a path for you through the spikes.

Your path will now be blocked by a sandstream. You have no choice but to cross
its path and be swept away. Below lies a chest guarded by four The Damned.

These opponents are durable and powerful, but they do nothing but physical
attacks which is a blessing. They're Undead like so many creatures in this
place, so Requiem hurts them a lot, if not outright killing them. They can
teach you the Blue Off-Guard and Doom spells; use !Control, feed the slave an
Ether, let it cast the spell you want. For your troubles you'll get another Ice
Shield. Across your path slither two Aspis snakes.

Go up and follow the path. You'll walk past the sandstream, now safely on the
other side. On the 2nd Floor, there are a few hidden passages your Thief can
spot. Two Aspis snakes are released here. When you leave this place, you'll
find a standing sarcophagus. When you stand in front of it, it will open and
out walk the Grand Mummy.

The Grand Mummy has 6000 HP and uses physical attacks and Dancehall Daze, an
attack that sets Sleep. He's weak to Fire-elemental attacks and isn't Heavy, so
he's really not that much of a pain to take down. A single boosted Firaga spell
does the trick, and a Two-Handed Flametonque Knight deals a lot of damage as
well. About the same as a Two-Handed Brave Blade Knight, tee-hee. If you came
back here with Apollos Harp, it deals great amounts of damage as well. You can
easily keep the thing at bay in the meantime with !Flirt, though the 
implications of that act may be a tad to grotesque for your taste.

When you're done, you can grab a Cursed Ring from a chest within the
sarcophagus. It's defensive properties are awesome, but it gives the wearer a
Countdown in battle. For random encounters, this shouldn't be a problem, and
equipping the Cursed Ring is actually a fairly good idea at this point if you
ask me. If you carry around any Bards or Dancers, frail as they are, a Cursed
Ring can really help them out here. For longer battles though, the status may
pose a problem. Now, track back to the entrance. Now you're here, there's
always the option of quickly leaving for a Cottage and Save.

Return and take the right path. Your path will be clear to you. You'll
encounter two more Aspis snakes on the 2nd Floor. The second floor is, by the
way, devoid of random encounters. On the 3rd Floor are three chests you can
grab, all protected by monsters. The left one contains a Flame Shield and is
guarded by The Damned x 4, the middle one contains a Dark Matter and is also
guarded by The Damned x 4, and the right one contains a White Robe and is
guarded by an Archeosaur (common) or an Archeosaur and two Ushabti (rare).

The Archeosaur has 9960 HP, can use physical attacks, !Claw (sets Poison),
Poison Breath and Zombie Breath. The thing is Heavy, a Dragon and Undead, so...
Boosted Firaga spells, Firaga spellblade effects and such are a good idea. If
you returned here after picking up Lenna and some other stuff, know that the
Apollo's Harp deals great amounts of damage to the Archeosaur as well. You
can even !Control the Archeosaur, which is a great idea; Archeosaurea don't
use Zombie Breath until the fourth turn, but it's best to make sure you never
see it appear at all. You can learn Level 3 Flare from him with the tested
Control/Reflect combo one so often can apply to learn Level 3 Flare. The undead
dragon will always drop a Dragon Fang post-scuffle, so that's a bonus.

The White Robe is awesome. Vitality and Magic Power + 3, increased defenses and
20 % Magic Block. Wear it, brothers and sisters. Note that Stamina increase on
equipment really doesn't do much; it doesn't influence HP, but it does boost
Regen healing.

To the right, you can see a stairway turning light and turning dark again. When
light, you'll slip off the stairs into the spikes, which like the ones you saw
earlier deal damage and poison you. Float and Light Step allow you to
circumvent the damage, but you'll slip off the stairway regardless.

On the 4th Floor, Mecha Heads roam the place rather than random encounters. I
suggest you clear out the room first. There's a total of 6 Mecha Heads (and two
Aspis that are released in the meantime).

Mecha Heads are machines that employ the standard machine attacks: Flame
Thrower and Missile, but also, Wave Cannon, Mustard Bomb and Reverse Polarity.
When any of your character use !Jump, the Mecha Head will force the character
to land with Interceptor Rocket. No special effects occur when you do manage to
land with Jump, so why Mecha Head takes special precaution to one of the weaker
attacks you can use at this point is beyond me.

Lacking a Heavy nature and being weak to Lightning-elemental attacks opens up
the possibility to take down Mecha Head with Thundaga Spellblade effects.
Boosted Thundaga spells also get the job done. Have a character Control the
Mecha Head, set up Thundaga Spellblade when he's not looking and strike from
behind (have the Mecha Head use ??? on himself). Failsafe strategy! Without
Control, you'll just have to absorb a few attacks; Stop works, so Stop and
Romeo's Ballad both help out. Thundaga cast by a Black Mage or by someone else
will just be devastating by itself, so you don't need to prepare if you don't
want to.

Anyway, when all is clear, go to the far left. Push a button to remove the
spikes leading up to the chest and release two Aspis. Kill them and open the
chest, which is guarded by an Archeosaur. It contains a Black Robe, which is
pretty much the best Robe in the Pre-GBA games. It's like the White Robe, only
doesn't invest in the useless Stamina department and boosts Magic Power by a
higher margin.

There are two sarcophagus' in the room. The two chests around the right
sarcophagus contain Elixirs. Opening the right sarcophagus releases a mummy.
You can fight it if you want. They're easy as long as you attack them
simultaneously; when alone, a Mummy may use Danse Macabre, which sets Zombie to
a single character which just plain sucks. Past the fight lies a chest with a
Thornlet, giving you the third and last piece of "evil" equipment. The Thornlet
grants the best Defense of the game and it gives an immunity to Sleep, though
it gives the wearer an inherent Sap status. The thing's a bad idea.

The other sarcophagus takes you further in, past another Mummy x 3 formation.
There's a Save Point here.

Sekhmet
Level: 41, HP: 6000, MP: 0
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 5
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 20%
Steal: Thief's Gloves (rare), Hi-Potion (common)
Win: Crystal Armor (rare)
Special Technique: !Sling
Special Technique Effect: Adds Darkness
Creature: Humanoid, Magic Beast, Heavy
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Old, Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Slow,
  Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Sling

On the 5th floor doth Sekhmet appear, one of the Brothers (though Sekhmet the
Egyption Goddess he's named for was, y'know a goddess). He's a formidable
warrior, and once you defeat him he won't appear again. The trick here,
however, is not defeating him until you really want to. He has a rare Thief's
Gloves steal, and by running away after you get it you can get as many as you
like. You'll need to use Return as he also has a common steal (Hi-Potion).
Obviously running is not an option for you if you went with the Brave Blade,
but sucks to be you then. Naw, just kidding: the Catch ability works on him,
and when caught he won't set the bit. In other words, Steal until you get the
Thief's Gloves (use Return), then reduce him to 3000 HP or lower and Catch him.
Get rid of Sekhmet on another random encounter, as his !Release is (Strong) 
Attack and it's capable of killing himself in a single blow.

Sekhmet is quite the brawler in the meantime, so don't underestimate him.
Darkness and Confuse are two handy status ailments to set on him, and he can be
Paralyzed or Stopped (the former with a whip too, as he's got a Magic Beast
nature so the Beast Killer is a beast killer). At level 41, a combo of Dark
Spark and Level 5 Death will net you victory as well.

"You may have defeated me, but my brother in the tower will - gahhh!"

For fun, Catch Sekhmet and !Release him later versus his brother :p

On this floor, you may also encounter the Zephyrus that summons Ziggurat Gigas'
and Tunnellers. These Tunnellers may use Level 3 Flare with which they deal
around 1000 damage. Halved by Shell, this is the first and somewhat safe
method of learning the Blue spell without dying from it or mucking about with
complicated !Mix potions and Controlled monsters. 

There are three paths you can take here. Go up to find two chests. The left one
contains a Dark Matter guarded by The Damned x 4. The right one contains a
Crystal Armor guarded by Objet d'Art x 5. Go back. There's a hidden passage
here that you can spot with Find Passages. You'll want to equip it temporarily
to see where you're going. There's only one chest you can reach this way. The
chest contains a Black Garb, improved armor for your Clothes character(s). The
chest is guarded by either:

Bandercoeurl x 2, Black Warlock or
Steel Fist x 3

You'll want to fight the latter, as even if you still really want a Judgment
Staff, you can get one later. The Steel Fists are powerful physical warriors
who counter every Attack command with !Air Fist, which sets Old and Sap. When
a Steel Fist is alone, it will display the message "Focusing energy..." and use
the powerful (Strong) Attack the following turn which will kill a character. If
you're really lucky, you get to take some Kaiser Knuckles with you after the
fight, which boosts Barehanded attacks. They have NO status immunities, so
setting Toad, Petrify or Death takes care of them easily enough. Their Magic
Evasion however is very high, so use !Spellblade or !Mix potions. They cannot
avoid Aerial attacks, so Whips and Bows will always strike true.

Barehanded punches are normally based off your Level and Battle Power.
However, with Kaiser Knuckles the Battle Power is inherently boosted by 50,
making Barehanded punches nice enough again. In addition, they boost Strength
by 5 and give more Defense than other Accessories (except for the Genji Gloves
and Cursed Ring). This is really great time for a Monk; Berserk really boosts
the damage.

Now, climb the stairway you have yet to explore.

On the 6th Floor, multiple sandstreams appear, but there are buttons within
reach to stop them. However, without a running sandstream you can't enter the
hole which leads you to some treasure chests. The first sandstream takes you to
a chest with a Dark Matter guarded by The Damned x 4. Get the chest and head
back. The second button stops the second sandstream, which would have taken you
to the Black Garb chest you picked up earlier. Next to the second button is a
door. Enter the door to find two buttons. The right one is the wrong one (oh,
irony!); it makes the wall throw you in the pit, onto the first sandstream and
further down. The left one makes the wall retreat to make way for four chests.
The two to the right contain 8000 and 9000 Gil; the two left ones contain Dark
Matters. Both are guarded by The Damned x 4. Anyway, the third sandstream gives
you nothing, so simply stop it and traverse it.

The 7th Floor contains more treasure, though you'll have to work for it. Pass
up on the stairway and enter the left door. With Find Passages, you'll
discover a long hidden passage which takes you to a total of three chests: a
Gaia Hammer (guarded by The Damned x 4), 10000 Gil and a Cottage. Now, get up
the stairway.

The tiles on the 8th floor switch around. Stand a while to observe which tiles
are 'safe' (which never disappear). If you drop down, you'll be able to open a
chest containing an Elixir. You'll want to fall at least once for the treasure.
The three chests in the room exist out of a Gold Hairpin, a Ribbon and Protect
Ring. Furthermore, you'll want to traverse the tiles to the right first. You'll
be able to open two chests. Dark Matter (The Damned) and 12000 Gil. Return to
the main room and exit on the left side. The two chests here contain an Elixir
and a last Dark Matter guarded by The Damned x 4.

On the stairway to the door in the middle, the light tiles slide you down. Take
care. On the 8th Floor, you'll able to finally obtain one of the four tablets.
You'll taken to the top of the Pyramid, where the Dragon King Bahamut will rise
beneath the peninsula where you left the airship to warp to Galuf's world.
Bahamut is the most powerful summon spell in the game; sadly, it appears you'll
still have to seek him out before you'll be able to call him forth in battle.
The airship also floats in your direction. Good news all around!

....surprised there's no boss, aren't you?

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.40.2  The fight with Melusine
**********************************

Heh.

You'll want to get to the airship, so head east. Walk through the patch of
forest to engage in a cutscene. Lenna has escaped the Void, which is awesome
news, but the effects of her time there are less then positive and things turn
for the worse very quickly. While you are incapacitated by a friend's powers,
Exdeath commands the Void to consume the Library of the Ancients, its scholars
and Ghido. After Exdeath has returned to the Interdimensional Rift to continue
its work on mastering the Void, Hiryu dives down in a kamikaze attack to rescue
Lenna from the demon that's possessing her. Success.

Melusine is one of the Eleven of the Rift, Exdeath's elite force of unstoppable
demons. Each a soul filled with malice, they were recruited with the promise of
a world ruled by demons. Locked away for a 1000 years, their madness, rage and
power are overflowing. Eleven Satanic rules of the Earth, Eleven the fool's
amount, Eleven the first of the Master numbers...

Melusine
Level: 29/33, HP: 20000, MP: 500
Defense: 90/0, Magic Defense: 0/90
Evasion: 10%/0%, Magic Evasion: 10%/90%
Steal: Leather Cap/Leather Shoes/Leather Cap/Leather Armor (rare)
Win: Maiden's Kiss (rare)
Absorbs: Fire/Ice/Lightning
Nullifies: Water, Wind, Earth, Holy, Poison
Weakness: Fire/Ice/Lightning
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Sleep, Paralyze, Confuse, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, Firaga, Blizzaga, Thundaga, Entice, Barrier Change

Melusine's "thing" is her Barrier Change attack, which calls into existence
another form of herself. HP is transferred, but statuses aren't. Elemental
properties are swapped around, and there's no set pattern as Melusine will call
forth a random other Melusine. Her AI script isn't that difficult; she will
simply randomly use physical attacks, use level 5 Black spells or switch to
another form.

Melusine has incredible amounts of Defense in all but one of her forms. Her
Magic Defense is normally 0, but since she nullifies all elements and she swaps
around her reaction to Fire, Ice and Lightning it's difficult to take advantage
of that. When her Defense is turned down to 0, her Magic Defense soars to 90,
so her 'weakness' becomes physical in that state; in addition to having 0
Defense, so will also become unable to avoid Aerial attacks such as Whips and
Bows.

Her first form is weak to Fire-elemental attacks, so if you know what you're
doing you can kill her before she even moves to another form. Two-Handed
Flametongue Knights are grand; when hitting a weakness, all attacks become
barrier-piercing, remember? Boosted Firaga spells also deal incredible amounts
of damage, especially when bounced off three characters unto Melusine. With
the Brave Blade or the Chicken Knife, you can set Firaga Spellblade effects and
watch the damage fly to sickening heights. You can lock Melusine in one 
weakness by setting Sleep; while her Magic Evasion is sky-high, you can use
Sleep Spellblade effects to affect her anyway. You can always check Melusine's
form with Libra spells or !Scan. If you detect no elemental weaknesses, this
means that Melusine will have 0 Defense, meaning physical attacks are once
again a very good option.

The battle is easy if you have what it takes. A combination of Golem and
Carbuncle completely shuts down Melusine's offenses, as does all-round
application of the Dragon Shielding Mix (Ether + Dragon Fang) combined with
Golem. If you focused on physical characters, this is an incredibly nasty
battle as you can hardly touch Melusine. The Poison Axe cut through her
Defenses nicely; the Gaia Hammer you're now bound to have is more powerful, but
the Earthquake attack will be a wasted turn. Non-elemental magical attacks are
quite rare, but 1000 Needles and Comet are safe (if relatively weak) bets at
all times.

Lenna joined the party...

Use a Cottage to bring back Lenna. In the meantime, while you're traveling to
the Sealed Castle of Kuza, Exdeath uses the Void it controls more and more to
erase the town of Walse and Castle Walse, the town of Istory, the Moogle
Village, and Bartz' hometown, Lix. Bartz throws a hissy fit. Jeesh, he's not
thrilled about all the side-quests or anything.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.41.1  Airship Exploitation: Planet R
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Shield Dragon (#86), Exdeath's Soul (#87), Slug (#154), Gloom Widow (#155),
  Mykale (#156), Frost Bull (#173), Istory Lythos (#174), Spizzner (#175),
  Nix (#197), Water Scorpion (#198), Vilia (#199), Gel Fish (#200), Rukh (#201),
  Sea Devil (#202), Stingray (#203)

  Container contents:
  Cottage

  Miscellaneous items:
  Death Sickle (rare Mykale steal), Dragon's Whisker (rare Stingray drop), Dark
  Matter (common Stingray steal), Rune Blade (rare Stingray steal), Dragon Fang
  (rare Istory Lythos drop), Judgment Staff (rare Istory Lythos steal),
  Defender (rare Sea Devil steal), Angel Ring (rare Vilia drop), Silver Specs
  (rare Vilia steal), Murasame (rare Rukh steal), Ribbon

  Summon spells:
  Syldra

  Blue spells:
  Moon Flute, 1000 Needles, Lilliputian Lyric, Aero, Mighty Guard, Goblin
  Punch, ???

  Songs:
  Sinewy Etude

Now that you've gotten the airship, there is a LOT of stuff you can do. I'll
give it to you in the most logical order, which isn't that hard. First off,
we're going to raid this entire place of all its little treasures we can find
without diving head-first in one of the deathtraps this game regards as
'dungeons'. The goodies:

- A powerful new Blue spell, Mighty Guard
- A Ribbon from an NPC from Regole and a Cottage found in Carwen
- A new song, the Sinewy Etude
- A new summoned monster, Syldra, found in the Pirate Cave
- Three weapons from the Sealed Castle of Kuza
- Rare stolen weapons including a Rune Blade, a Defender, a Murasame and a
  very rare Dragon's Whisker
- A new summoned monster, Odin, fought in Castle Bal

It's probable you've lost your marbles completely at this point. Where is
everything? Here's a map for you, whenever you get lost:

http://www.cavesofnarshe.com/ff5/map.php?world=combined

Where Tycoon Castle once was, the Void broke free of its 1000-year old prison,
at the same location it did one millennium ago. Don't fly the airship into it,
you'll get sucked into trouble you can't handle yet.

In the north-east corner of the World Map lies the massive Gloceana Desert. To
the west lies Regole. Remember the little girl whose Ribbon had gone missing?
She has found it again, and donates to your cause to fight Exdeath. It's
super-effective against instant death, Petrify, Toad, Poison, Darkness, Old,
Berserk, Silence, evil and breast cancer, I hear. Regole still offers the
pleasures of alcohol and dancing, should you be in need of some short-sighted
ways of dealing with problems. Also, a piano if you missed it earlier; it's
hidden in the Pub. Hidden pianos are the BEST pianos.

Now, in the south-east corner of the Gloceana Desert, Carwen lies. Here, you
can find a Cottage from a barrel you couldn't pick up earlier as an NPC was
blocking the path. It's right of the Pub, down at the docks, middle barrel. If
you freed Lone Wolf, you won't be able to get the Cottage here as the fiend has
taken it.

Also, one of the women (the one south of the Pub, between two bushes) here asks
you if you think she's pretty. If you answer 'yes', "she" will reveal his true
nature as a mimic and speed off. The person you just spoke was Gogo, master of
the simulacrum... his miming skills will astonish you. You'll meet him later,
have no doubt. In addition, the NPCs here are of the weirdest variety. One of
'em mentions how the odd mimic was planning on visiting the Tower of Walse.
THIS IS A PLOT HOOK. There is a piano here if you missed it before.

Northeast of the Desert of the Swirling Sands, in Surgate Castle, you can find
some scholars who escaped the Library of the Ancients. No matter, they're not
important. I mean, they're important in the sense that every human life is
unique and priceless like a beautiful snowflake and all, but they're not
directly relevant to our quest. If you didn't get the Cottage yet, now's the
time!

The long, thin stretch of land in the south-east corner of the Map has a slight
bulge in it. This is the former Crescent Island. Fly there to find the Minstrel
who offered to teach you new songs based on your piano skills earlier. If
you've played all seven pianos so far, your rendition of Mozart's Alla Turca
should impress him enough to compose the Sinewy Etude, a song which slowly
increases your Strength in battle. An etude, for those unfamiliar with the
player's side of music, is a piece of music written to make the player more
competent at his instrument; it's a kind of homework.

Also in Crescent: Mid! He's panicking, not confronting issues at hand and
generally unfit for military service should the opportunity present itself.
Whatever, let him be. He might find the personal strength to deal with his
personal demons. Probably not, though.

Take the airship to where Lix used to be, now a gaping black hole across the
coastline to the far north and a bit to the east. Alternatively, you can sail
to the very south-eastern corner of the World Map, or if you want to take a
look at chapter 4.41.2 of this document, basically anywhere where you encounter
monster formation pack 108 on the seas. Here, while sailing around, you'll
always encounter a Rukh bird (rarely with two Sea Devils). This bird has a rare
Murasame for stealing, a Katana which is stronger than your current Osafune and
with a very high critical hit ratio. Super-sweet and fun to use! The Sea Devils
have a rare Defender, a Knightsword with the Main Gauche's evasive properties;
it also casts Protect when used as an item without breaking.

The Rukh enemy has 9000 HP, which is a lot. Next to fairly powerful physicals,
it may use Breath Wing and even Zombie Breath. It is vulnerable to every status
ailment except for those that change form (Toad and Mini), so you should be
able to cripple it and then let loose with damage. !Control is a good command
in this battle; it's Breath Wing helps in defeating the massive avian.

In the very south-western corner of the World Map, more fun stuff is happening!
Here, you'll be able to encounter the following:

  42 % Nix x2
  35 % Gel Fish x4
  23 % Vilia

Nix are Sahagin upgrades, boring as hell. You can get Goblin Punch from their
!Control menu. Gel Fish are just jellyfish that washed aboard; they're weak to
Lightning and may use ??? through !Control; they're so physically weak they'll
always inflict 0 damage.

Vilia
Level: 27, HP: 19000, MP: 10000
Defense: 40, Magic Defense: 30
Evasion: 40%, Magic Evasion: 90%
Steal: Maiden's Kiss (common), Silver Specs (rare)
Win: Angel Ring (rare)
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical Attack
Special Technique Effect: 150% damage
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Toad, Mini, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep,
  Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack

Vilia may not look like it, but she attacks physically only and with great
force to boot. Golem will help you when you run into the floating flower girl.
The Gel Fish formation gives a nice 8 ABP, a single Rukh gives 8 ABP, when
followed by two Sea Devils it's 13 ABP, the single Vilia a whopping 25 ABP! Not
a bad place to look around for ABP without gaining levels, as nothing on the
wide seas gives you Experience Points. Vilia may drop a rare Angel Ring, but
between getting them from Druids and getting all the Gil you ever wanted from
Gil Turtle, that might not be something to swoon over.

Water Scorpions are all over the place; just sail around in any location but
the two I just gave. South of Moore is a piece of desert, for instance; west of
this desert lie waters that include a 65% shot at finding them. They just
attack physically, or may !Sting you to set Paralyze. Weak to Lightning! On the
ocean, imagine! Water Scorpions have a ridiculously high physical damage 
multiplier. That means that their physical attacks can be dangerous, but it
mostly means that they are proud bearer of the most powerful !Release Attack
you can collect on the Overworld Map; only one or two creatures in the final
dungeon can hold a candle to this little guy's mayhem. 

For more information on this subject of sea (or land) encounters, 4.41.2 has
all the info on overworked monster formations you could ever need.

You can spot Boko on the World Map as well. From here, you should be able to
find the Pirate's Cave. You can land in the little hole in the mountains for a
shortcut. Enter the cave where the pirates live only have Faris rush off to a
nearby shore. Syldra will appear, and with the help of Krile she'll give us her
power. Remember kids: friendship can only be measured in battle power. Man, I'm
so nihilistic I think Sartre was full of it! Syldra's Thunderstorm is a
massively powerful Wind-elemental attack which you can boost with the Air
Knife. It's now what Titan was when you first got him. Dancers, Chemists, Bards
and all those Jobs can boost the power behind it. It is the best. If you want
to have more Air Knives, you can buy them in Moore. Moore Air Knives!

Fly back to Tule. To the east and a bit to the north lies the Sealed Castle of
Kuza. The scholars of the Wind Shrine now inhabit the halls. With the tablet,
you can go to the room with the twelve weapons. As soon as you place the tablet
on the sparkling tile, the exit will submerge and you can pick out any three of
the twelve weapons sealed here. Before you reach the room of the Twelve
Weapons, though, you might encounter Shield Dragons or an enemy called
Exdeath's Soul, that elusive #87 you've been missing in your Bestiary for half
a game now.

  Encounters within Kuza, the Sealed Castle:
  58 % Exdeath's Soul
  42 % Shield Dragon

Exdeath's Soul
Level: 1, HP: 20000, MP: 20000
Defense: 40, Magic Defense: 45
Evasion: 50%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Win: Dark Matter (always)
Nullifies: Earth
Weakness: Holy
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy, Undead
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Death, Slow
Attacks: Attack, Death, Banish, Reaper's Sword

"I've got Exdeath's Soul, but I'm not Exdeath's soldier"
 - The Aevis Killers (2004)

These phantom spirits of a great and terrible mage (guess which one) have 20000
HP (!) and are immune to all status ailments. They are weak to Holy-elemental
attacks, are Heavy, Humanoid and Undead of nature and will either use physical
attacks or try to set Death by means of either Death spells, Banish spells or a
Reaper's Sword attack. Exdeath's Soul has a very high Evasion rating as well,
so damaging it is a chore.

!Drink + !Mix (Holy Breath) is very powerful. This is a random fight that may
call for boss tactics; Hastega, Golem and Carbuncle are not wasted luxuries. I
should note that Exdeath's Soul is immune to !Control, so no luck there.
Requiem can be very powerful in dealing with the fiend. Exdeath's Soul is not
a difficult fight per se since all of its attacks are ST (meaning you can
always keep reviving and dealing damage) and they miss often. In addition, 
Carbuncle and Reflect Rings bounce off Death and Banish spells, and Reaper's
Sword can be protected against with Ribbons. But it'll be a long fight. 
Apollo's Harp and the Sage's Staff, two of the sealed weapons you can take away
from this castle, deal great amounts of damage to this Soul. 

The Twelve Sealed weapons:

Excalibur               Holy-elemental Knightsword that's quite a bit more
                        powerful than all other options; unless you count a
                        fully powered Brave Blade. Adds Strength + 5
Assassin's Dagger       A Knife that has a 25 % chance of casting Death on its
                        target. 
Sasuke's Katana         A much more powerful version of a Main Gauche, this
                        baby lets you dodge 25 % of all physical attacks before
                        a Hit Rate check is made. Can only be equipped by
                        Ninjas and Freelancers. 
                        Stacks with the Main Gauche, meaning two separate
                        checks.
Holy Lance              A Holy-elemental Lance that adds Strength + 3. Second
                        only to a difficult-to-obtain Lance you'll get in the
                        very last dungeon. Only useful if you plan on using
                        !Jump. 
Rune Axe                An Axe with an AWESOME property that is slightly wasted
                        on the Berserker. It's damage is based on both Strength
                        and Magic Power. Grants Magic Power + 3
Masamune                A Katana with allows the wielder to start with a full
                        ATB bar every battle, allowing him or her to take the
                        first turn in every situation. Often inflicts a
                        critical hit, casts Haste when used as an item.
Yoichi's Bow            A powerful bow. Grants Strength + 3 and Agility + 3
                        It has a Critical Hit rating chance of 30 %
Fire Lash               A non-elemental Whip that randomly casts Firaga.
Sage's Staff            A Staff which boosts Holy-elemental attacks by 50 %;
                        deals eight times as much damage versus the Undead,
                        casts Raise when used as an item.
Magus Rod               A Rod which boosts Fire-, Ice-, Lightning-, Poison-,
                        Earth- and Wind-elemental attacks by 50 %. Deals Fire-,
                        Ice- and Lightning-elemental damage.
Apollo's Harp           Deals magical, non-elemental damage. Inflicts eight
                        times as much damage on creatures with a Dragon or
                        Undead nature. Important enemies it wrecks are 
                        Exdeath's Soul and Leviathan, and a bunch in the last
                        dungeon and bonus dungeon of this game. 
Gaia Bell               Has a 25 % chance of using Earthquake, boosts Earth-
                        elemental attacks by 50 %

It's hard to pinpoint the three best ones right now. The Gaia Bell inherently
fails, I'm sorry to say. The Fire Lash isn't that awesome in my opinion, though
if you plan on using a Beastmaster in the near future it's definitely an
improvement over the Chain Whip (though not as good as a Dragon's Whisker,
which you can obtain on the Overworld Map). The Assassin's Dagger is good for
two things: Battle Power and its random Death spell. Neither of them are
extremely impressive at this point in the game, but the Assassin's Dagger is
the most powerful weapon of the Mystic Knight for a fair bit into the future.
The Sage Staff is useful only for boosting the power of the Holy spell which 
you don't have yet, and for damaging Undead. I suggest you get the Staff with
the second tablet. Apollo's Harp deals incredible amounts of damage versus 
Undead targets such as Exdeath's Soul and the Archeosaurs and Grand Mummy you
may have seen in the Pyramid of Moore. It also deals this 800% damage versus
Dragons, a nature that can be set through the Dragon Kiss Mix potion.

The Rune Axe deserves a very special mention. It's already more powerful than
your Gaia Hammer, even without the Rune damage increase. For 5 MP (which the
Berserker isn't going to use anyway), 10 is added on its normal 71 Battle
Power. However, it's with the Multiplier that the Rune damage increase gets
freaky. Next to the normal Strength * Level modifier that's used, this value is
increased by a similar formula with Magic Power * Level. Should those stats be
the same, the damage output would double. On the Berserker, whose Magic Power
is extremely low, this is only a damage increase of about 6 %. Meh, still a
free 10 Battle Power regardless of that stupid formula, and the Rune Axe is
plain stronger than the Gaia Hammer and doesn't have that annoying tendency to
use Earthquake instead. Just know that in the future, when you get both
Strength and Magic Power equal (on a Freelancer, for instance), the Rune Axe
easily keeps up with a fully powered Brave Blade in damage output.

I'm fond of taking the Apollo's Harp, Sasuke's Katana and either the Magus Rod
or Yoichi's Bow at this point. If you, however plan on specifically using a 
Knight, Dragoon, Samurai, Beastmaster or Berserker their respective weapons 
really make them more useful then they are without them. The above are just 
kinda the best weapons for an all-round party in my opinion. 

When you're done, you'll see a brief scene of Exdeath sending some of its
ultra-demons out to get you. I'm sure we won't be having to face them
one-by-one at the end of certain ruins.

It's fun to see how the Holy Lance, Sage's Staff, Excalibur and Apollo's Harp
make dealing with Exdeath's Soul so much easier already. Set Haste to the
weapon's wielders and watch the damage fly.

Time to get a very useful Blue spell called Mighty Guard. Mighty Guard sets
Protect, Shell and Float on all party members in a single casting for only 72
MP, making it a supremely effective spell to have. Trouble is that you can 
only learn it by finding the Stingray enemy, which is a rare (6%) encounter
in a single location. Mighty Guard isn't essential right away, but it is very
important to have when going for the final dungeon. Mighty Guard starts to
become really handy prior to the fourth tablet, but I suggest you get it right
away. 

[STINGRAY-LINK]

To the south of the Gloceana Desert, there's a little piece of land sticking
out In its neighborhood, old-time enemies such as Sahagin and Thunder Anemones
appear. If you're not encountering them, you're on the wrong spot. There's a
rare 1/16 chance a monster called Stingray will appear.

Stingray
Level: 93, HP: 30000, MP: 1000
Defense: 60, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 40%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Rune Blade (rare), Dark Matter (common)
Win: Turtle Shell (rare), Nothing (common)
Absorbs: Water
Nullifies: Earth
Special Technique: !Fin
Special Technique Effect: Adds Poison
Creature: Heavy
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk,
  Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Fin

This creature is extremely strong and randomly drops a Dragon's Whisker, the
strongest Whip in the game. But this isn't the biggest reason we've come to
fight the fiend. When Controlled (you can Confuse it) it can use Mighty Guard,
a Blue spell which sets Protect, Shell and Float to the entire party at once.
It's awesome, and Stingray is its only source. Also, this creature has a rare
steal: the Rune Blade. It's a sword with the same property of the Rune Axe. It
does have a commons steal in Dark Matter (because ITS SMOOTH FLAT BODY BELIES
THE DARKNESS WITHIN), but you'll just have to cast Return a few times.

As an opponent, the Stingray is resilient but doable. It has 30000 HP. It's
getting crazier and crazier, huh? It is Heavy, sadly, and has no elemental
weaknesses. It can be Paralyzed (but it won't take long). Slow works, as does
Stop and Confuse. Never set Confuse, though, as Tidal Wave attacks on itself
will heal it for 8000 HP or so. Poison would be a good way of dealing damage,
you'll be facing the Stingray for a long time.

Now for the goodies! Mighty Guard sets Protect, Shell and Float on all allies,
so that's one of the best defensive buffs ever. The Dragon's Whisker is a
mighty Whip which will always deal a Critical Hit versus Dragons and will try
to Paralyze a target 50 % of the time. It is a better Whip than the Fire Lash
in my opinion. The Rune Blade is like the legendary Rune Axe, but since it is
a Sword (not a Knightsword, a normal one) it can be given to those that manage
to combine physical might with magical skills. Red and Blue Mages as well as
Mystic Knights will wield it with potency (compare with the Greatsword if you
must), while the best recipient is obviously a Knight with !Summon 5. Crazy,
crazy amounts of damage, comparable to a fully powered Brave Blade even. It is
easily the most damaging Sword for those not capable of wielding the
Knightswords, even though its listed Battle Power isn't too hot.

Important note: though the Rune Blade is a sweet deal on the Mystic Knight due
to the Mystic Knight's inherent Magic Power and Strength, the Rune Blade is
actually incompatible (!) with Spellblade magic. So it's a good deal for random
encounters (paired with Two-Handed, Barehanded or Berserk if you will), but if
you wanna use the saracen scourge for its Spellblade tactics in longer battles,
switch to another blade.

To the north, where Istory used to be, you can find three new critters for your
Bestiary. The Frost Bull attacks physically only, and runs when subjected to a
Fire-elemental attack (like its cousin, Big Horn). Spizzner is a mere Magic
Beast cannon fodder; reminiscent of the Sand Killers, the Spizzner is not
Undead. Istory Lythos may attack physically or use Frostbite; they have
impressive defenses and possess a rare Judgment Staff for you to take. Bio is a
good way of dealing with them; they're not weak to it or anything, but it cuts
nicely through their Magic Defense and is unblockable.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.41.2  Airship Exploitation: They see me Odin', they hatin'
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Nutkin (#6), Skull Eater (#57), Objet d'Art (#99), Odin (#290)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Flame Shield (rare Odin drop), Protect Ring (rare Odin steal)

  Summon spells:
  Odin

  Blue spells:
  Death Claw

That's enough. Spot the large light-green patch to the south-east of the Desert
of the Shifting Sands? Here, the Castle of Bal is located. Remember Jachol
Cave? Which ultimately led to some pointless little dent in the mountains? The
castle is now placed right on top of that place, so you can get to the locked
basement of the Castle of Bal through Jachol Cave. We'll want to go there to
obtain a new summon monster, Odin. There's no reason not to get him now, but
he won't become truly useful until a bit later, prior to the third tablet. 

[ODIN-LINK]

Travel through Jachol Cave. If you forgot how to, check back to section 4.16.3
(Jachol Cave). The Monk's !Kick is still a great way of dealing with the Nut
Eaters here. With your rising power, you may now survive a Skull Eater's
!Incisor (when its target is in the back row) and see him/her get Poisoned but
not Confused, unless the target is protected from Poison but not from Confuse
(doable only through the Resist Poison Mixture), in which case you'll get
Confused characters.

Now that you're in Bal Castle's basement, you'll encounter Objet d'Art again.
Level 5 Death kills all formations instantly; Thundaga is a straight-damage
alternative if you just want to kill things. Simply walk up to the orb thingy
that's supposed to represent summon beasts because Square was too lazy making
separate sprites for the three that feature the game. Talk to Odin and accept
two times to engage in a fight with the eight-legged harbinger of doom.

"It's your funeral..."

Odin
Level: 2, HP: 17000, MP: 500
Defense: 20, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 80%
Steal: Protect Ring (rare)
Win: Flame Shield (rare)
Absorbs: Holy
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Petrify, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze, Berserk, Silence,
  Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Zantetsuken

Odin! That's not his hair, that's his cape. He's wearing a helmet, how could
that be his hair? This isn't a rock musical about the anti-Vietnam movement,
this is a Japanese fantasy game. Notice how Sleipnir, Odin's horse, has six
legs.

The purpose of this fight appears to be testing the extent of your powers; how
much damage can you inflict in a minute? However, with Odin being vulnerable to
Petrify, all it takes is the setting of this ailment to end the battle. Though
Odin has spectacular amounts of Magic Evasion, he hardly has any Evasion so
Break Spellblade effects are easily your best option.

Odin has a rare Protect Ring steal. Though useful at this point, many people
make the mistake of thinking you NEED this opportunity to get four Protect
Rings in the game. This isn't true as an infinitely re-fightable enemy also has
a rare Protect Ring for stealing, but you won't fight it in a while so it's
technically better to grab one here. Note that Return won't reset the counter
Odin inflicts on you, so it's no guarantee you'll get one. I wouldn't go for
it personally, but you might be less lazy than I. 

Odin's physicals are extremely weak, but Zantetsuken is a very powerful attack.
It's a magical attack whose random non-elemental damage output isn't based on
level. It can deal anywhere between 400 and 1600 damage to the entire party,
and Odin can use it on his very first turn.

Shell helps, but you don't really have the time unless you can Mighty Guard it
up in a single go across the entire party. Since the White Berserk spell is
unblockable and Odin's normal physicals aren't that threatening, it might be a
good idea to cast the spell to make sure Odin doesn't kill your Break
Spellblade knight or dame. If you got any turns to spare but no access to
Berserk, the Sleep, Time Slip, Remora and Stop spells all hinder the guy for a
few seconds (Sleep-inducing spells for the rest of the battle).

Send in a Mystic Knight (not with a Rune Blade or Excalipoor!) and one or more 
Thieves with Thief's Gloves for maximum stealing attempts. Return does NOT 
reset the timer. This is retarded in every possible sense of the word, but it 
doesn't. You'll have to Save outside of Jachol Cave on the pre-GBA versions. In
the European version released later than the US version, they made Return 
affect the timer like it should have. Eventually, you'll have stolen your 
Protect Ring and you can finish off Odin with the Mystic Knight. If you're 
really lucky you might've gotten a Flame Shield here as well. If you're too 
late, Odin kills you after the battle. He can simply choose to kill you, since
he's Odin.

"Time's up! Better luck next time!"

Odin's Zantetsuken is the best summon attack ever. It's an unblockable attack
that kills anything it hits and disregards Death immunity. It does however
check for the Heavy nature, and as soon a single target on-screen has it, Odin
will use Gungnir instead, a non-elemental single-target attack which deals
damage based on your Magic Power and the target's Defense. If all enemies
on-screen are vulnerable to Zantetsuken, Odin may still use Gungnir (this
random chance is based on level) but since the Gungnir attack is powerful
enough on its own it's not too bad.

Rather than hiking back through Jacole Cave, you can also unlock the doors to
the Castle of Bal from the inside and walk out random encounter-free. You can
even pick up the Wind Drake (the lone one from Galuf's old World; the other one
killed itself to save Lenna, remember?) but since it can't land anywhere the
airship couldn't already take you, it's just a novelty thing.

Anyway, I will now take you to a secret on the Overworld Map. You'll get your
only vague hint on its exact location at some point later in the game, but
right now the advantages are too good to pass up and there's quite some
Crescent NPCs discussing a phantom village appearing the forest.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.41.3  Overworld Encounters: Planet R
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Goblin (#1), Killer Bee (#5), Nutkin (#6), Stray Cat (#7), Gatling (#16),
  Big Horn (#17), Tatou (#18), Bandersnatch (#19), Garula (#20), Aegir (#31),
  Zu (#32), Wild Nakk (#33), Grass Tortoise (#34), Silent Bee (#35), Mythril
  Dragon (#36), Double Lizard (#50), Bio Soldier (#51), Harvester (#52), Black
  Flame (#53), Dhorme Chimera (#58), Sandboil (#59), Desert Killer (#60), Sand
  Bear (#61), Weresnake (#95), Kornago (#86), Cursed Being (#97), Sleepy (#135),
  Triffid (#136), Hedgehog (#137), Python (#138), Shadow (#139), Elm Gigas
  (#140), Desertpede (#141), Bulette (#142), Slug (#154), Gloom Widow (#155),
  Mykale (#156), Frost Bull (#173), Istory Lythos (#174), Spizzner (#175),
  Ankheg (#184), Ammonite (#185), Landcrawler (#186), Sahagin (#193), Thunder
  Anemone (#194), Sea Ibis (#195), Corbett (#196), Nix (#197), Water Scorpion
  (#198), Vilia (#199), Gel Fish (#200), Rukh (#201), Sea Devil (#202),
  Stingray (#203)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Death Sickle (rare Mykale steal), Dragon's Whisker (rare Stingray drop), Dark
  Matter (common Stingray steal), Rune Blade (rare Stingray steal), Dragon Fang
  (rare Istory Lythos drop), Judgment Staff (rare Istory Lythos steal),
  Defender (rare Sea Devil steal), Angel Ring (rare Vilia drop), Silver Specs
  (rare Vilia steal), Murasame (rare Rukh steal)

  Spells:
  Moon Flute, 1000 Needles, Lilliputian Lyric, Aero, Mighty Guard, Goblin
  Punch, ???

Woohoo! Okay, you may want to skip this 'chapter', but I felt I needed to
include it anyway. In the previous chapter, I have detailed all noteworthy
exploits to be found the Overworld Map, but 'tis by no means an exhaustive talk
on everything to be found under the big blue skies.

The Overworld Map is divided 8 by 8 = 64 squares; each squares is filled with a
set of four possible monster formations for the sea, the grasslands, the
forests and the desert. I shouldn't have to explain that even though the game
has 'desert' encounters in a square filled with sea only, it is not relevant to
you since you can't access it.

Generally speaking, some things can be said about overworld encounters. Forest
encounters are the same as grassland encounters, except in places where old,
weak monsters from the first part of the game appear. To the north, grasslands
are inhabited by Spizzner, Frost Bulls and Istory Lythos monsters. In the
middle, you already faced encounters filled with Elm Gigas', Triffids,
Sleepies, Shadows, Pythons and Hedgehogs. In the south half, it's Slugs, Gloom
Widows and Mykales that roam the lands.

Centered, more or less, around the former location of Tycoon Castle roam a
large amount of 'old' monsters from when Bartz' world was still disconnected
from Galuf's world. Between these critters you can find Garula, who's
apparently still alive after fleeing Walse like a big hairy tusked Judas. Grass
Tortoises can be found at the grasslands on square F6, which is a great place
of farming Turtle Shells. At the grasslands of squares G2 and H5 and the
forests of H6, you can find the encounters from near Quelb before Exdeath
merged the two worlds; you can still find Kornago frogs here to trade for a
Kornago Gourd in Quelb.

So, here's the map:

  A1  A2  A3  A4  A5  A6  A7  A8
  B1  B2  B3  B4  B5  B6  B7  B8
  C1  C2  C3  C4  C5  C6  C7  C8
  D1  D2  D3  D4  D5  D6  D7  D8
  E1  E2  E3  E4  E5  E6  E7  E8
  F1  F2  F3  F4  F5  F6  F7  F8
  G1  G2  G3  G4  G5  G6  G7  G8
  H1  H2  H3  H4  H5  H6  H7  H8

And here are the monster formations for those squares. Each number indicates a
set of monster formations that is listed below.

Before you go hunting down in this impossible text document, allow me to give
you a beautiful HTML version of this map where you can highlight any given
square and see what lives there:

http://www.cavesofnarshe.com/ff5/finalworld.php

A1: 104 (sea)
A2: 89 (grass), 105 (sea)
A3: 106 (sea)
A4: 108 (sea)
A5: 109 (sea)
A6: 91 (grass), 104 (sea)
A7: 91 (grass), 105 (sea)
A8: 90 (grass), 106 (sea)

B1: 89 (grass), 108 (sea)
B2: 89 (grass), 159 (desert), 109 (sea)
B3: 90 (grass), 159 (desert), 104 (sea)
B4: 90 (grass), 105 (sea)
B5: 90 (grass), 159 (desert), 106 (sea)
B6: 91 (grass), 96 (desert), 108 (sea)
B7: 90 (grass), 94 (desert)
B8: 90 (grass), 95 (desert), 104 (sea)

C1: 105 (sea)
C2: 75 (grass), 106 (sea)
C3: 73 (grass), 108 (sea)
C4: 71 (grass), 109 (sea)
C5: 70 (grass), 104 (sea)
C6: 69 (grass), 96 (desert), 105 (sea)
C7: 67 (grass), 97 (desert), 110 (sea)
C8: 68 (grass), 108 (sea)

D1: 84 (grass), 109 (sea)
D2: 76 (grass), 77 (desert), 104 (sea)
D3: 74 (grass), 105 (sea)
D4: 74 (grass), 106 (sea)
D5: 64 (grass), 108 (sea)
D6: 0 (grass), 14 (forest), 109 (sea)
D7: 65 (grass), 104 (sea)
D8: 66 (grass), 105 (sea)

E1: 85 (grass), 77 (desert), 106 (sea)
E2: 82 (grass), 78 (desert), 108 (sea)
E3: 80 (grass)
E4: 81 (grass), 104 (sea)
E5: 3 (grass), 2 (forest), 159 (desert), 105 (sea)
E6: 6 (grass), 4 (forest), 159 (desert), 106 (sea)
E7: 86 (grass), 108 (sea)
E8: 109 (sea)

F1: 104 (sea)
F2: 83 (grass), 105 (sea)
F3: 82 (grass), 106 (sea)
F4: 83 (grass), 108 (sea)
F5: 10 (grass), 7 (forest), 109 (sea)
F6: 12 (grass), 8 (forest), 104 (sea)
F7: 86 (grass), 105 (sea)
F8: 106 (sea)

G1: 108 (sea)
G2: 45 (grass), 109 (sea)
G3: 80 (grass), 104 (sea)
G4: 81 (grass), 105 (sea)
G5: 106 (sea)
G6: 19 (grass), 108 (sea)
G7: 86 (grass), 159 (desert), 109 (sea)
G8: 104 (sea)

H1: 107 (sea)
H2: 106 (sea)
H3: 108 (sea)
H4: 87 (grass), 109 (sea)
H5: 45 (grass), 104 (sea)
H6: 87 (grass), 45 (forest), 105 (sea)
H7: 87 (grass), 106 (sea)
H8: 108 (sea)

These are all the possible monster formations to be found on the Overworld map:

(0)
35 % Goblin
35 % Killer Bee x2
23 % Goblin x3
6  % Killer Bee x2, Goblin

(2)
35 % Nutkin x3
35 % Stray Cat x3
23 % Stray Cat, Killer Bee, Nutkin
6  % Killer Bee x2, Goblin

(3)
Always: Goblin

(4)
35 % Gatling
35 % Gatling x2, Big Horn
23 % Tatou x2
6  % Big Horn, Gatling, Tatou

(6)
35 % Tatou x2, Gatling
35 % Big Horn x2
23 % Gatling
6  % Bandersnatch

(7)
35 % Bandersnatch, Big Horn
35 % Bandersnatch x3
23 % Bandersnatch
6  % Gatling

(8)
Always: Garula

(10)
Always: Wild Nakk x5

(12)
35 % Grass Tortoise x2
35 % Zu, Aegir x2
23 % Aegir x2, Grass Tortoise
6  % Zu, Grass Tortoise, Aegir

(14)
35 % Mythril Dragon, Silent Bee, Grass Tortoise
35 % Mythril Dragon
30 % Mythril Dragon x3

(19)
35 % Bio Soldier, Double Lizard, Harvester
35 % Harvester x2, Double Lizard
30 % Harvester x2, Black Flame x2

(45)
35 % Cursed Being x2, Weresnake, Kornago
35 % Kornago x3
23 % Cursed Being, Kornago x2
6  % Cursed Being x2, Weresnake, Kornago

(64)
35 % Sleepy x4
35 % Triffid x3
23 % Triffid, Sleepy, Shadow
6  % Hedgehog, Shadow x3

(65)
35 % Triffid x3
35 % Triffid, Sleepy, Shadow
23 % Hedgehog, Shadow x3
6  % Hedgehog, Sleepy, Triffid x2

(66)
35 % Triffid, Sleepy, Shadow
35 % Hedgehog, Shadow x3
23 % Hedgehog, Sleepy, Triffid x2
6  % Sleepy x4

(67)
35 % Hedgehog, Shadow x3
35 % Hedgehog, Sleepy, Triffid x2
23 % Sleepy x4
6  % Triffid x3

(68)
35 % Hedgehog, Sleepy, Triffid x2
35 % Sleepy x4
23 % Triffid x3
6  % Triffid, Sleepy, Shadow

(69)
35 % Python, Hedgehog, Triffid
35 % Python x2, Triffid x2
23 % Shadow x2, Triffid
6  % Shadow x2, Python, Hedgehog

(70)
35 % Python x2, Triffid x2
35 % Shadow x2, Triffid
23 % Shadow x2, Python, Hedgehog
6  % Python, Hedgehog, Triffid

(71)
35 % Shadow x2, Triffid
35 % Shadow x2, Python, Hedgehog
23 % Python, Hedgehog, Triffid
6  % Python x2, Triffid x2

(73)
35 % Elm Gigas
35 % Elm Gigas, Shadow, Python
23 % Python, Hedgehog, Triffid
6  % Python x2, Triffid x2

(74)
35 % Elm Gigas, Shadow, Python
35 % Elm Gigas, Hedgehog, Sleepy
23 % Python x2, Triffid x2
6  % Shadow x2, Triffid

(75)
35 % Elm Gigas, Hedgehog, Sleepy
35 % Elm Gigas
23 % Shadow x2, Triffid
6  % Python, Hedgehog, Triffid

(76)
35 % Elm Gigas, Hedgehog, Sleepy
35 % Elm Gigas, Shadow, Python
30 % Elm Gigas

(77)
35 % Desertpede x4
35 % Bulette
23 % Bulette, Desertpede x2
6  % Bulette x2

(78)
35 % Bulette x2, Desertpede
35 % Desertpede x4
23 % Bulette x2
6  % Bulette

(80)
35 % Slug x4
35 % Slug x2, Gloom Widow x2
23 % Gloom Widow x3
6  % Mykale x2

(81)
35 % Slug x2, Gloom Widow x2
35 % Gloom Widow x3
23 % Mykale x2
6  % Slug x4

(82)
35 % Gloom Widow x3
35 % Mykale x2
23 % Slug x4
6  % Slug x2, Gloom Widow x2

(83)
35 % Mykale x2
35 % Slug x4
23 % Slug x2, Gloom Widow x2
6  % Gloom Widow x3

(84)
35 % Mykale, Gloom Widow, Slug
35 % Slug x4
23 % Gloom Widow x3
6  % Mykale, Gloom Widow, Slug

(85)
42 % Mykale, Slug x3
35 % Slug x2, Gloom Widow x2
23 % Mykale x2

(86)
35 % Mykale, Slug x3
35 % Mykale, Gloom Widow, Slug
30 % Mykale x2

(87)
35 % Mykale x2
35 % Mykale, Gloom Widow, Slug
30 % Mykale, Slug x3

(89)
35 % Frost Bull
35 % Frost Bull x2
23 % Spizzner x2
6  % Istory Lythos x5

(90)
35 % Istory Lythos
35 % Frost Bull x2
23 % Spizzner x2
6  % Istory Lythos

(91)
35 % Spizzner x2
35 % Spizzner x3
23 % Spizzner, Frost Bull x2
6  % Istory Lythos

(94)
58 % Ankheg, Ammonite x3
42 % Ammonite x5

(95)
42 % Ammonite x5
35 % Landcrawler
23 % Ankheg

(96)
42 % Ammonite x5
35 % Ankheg, Ammonite x3
23% Ankheg

(97)
65 % Landcrawler
35 % Ankheg, Ammonite x3

(104)
58 % Corbett x2
42 % Nix x2

(105)
58 % Nix x2
42 % Nix, Water Scorpion x3

(106)
65 % Water Scorpion x2
35 % Corbett x2

(107)
42 % Nix x2
35 % Gel Fish x4
23 % Vilia

(108)
94 % Rukh
6  % Rukh, Sea Devil x2

(109)
35 % Rukh, Sea Devil x2
35 % Sea Devil x3
30 % Rukh

(110)
35 % Sahagin x3
35 % Thunder Anemone x2, Sahagin
23 % Sea Ibis, Sahagin x2
6  % Stingray

(159)
35 % Desert Killer x2
35 % Desert Killer, Sandboil x2
23 % Sand Bear
6  % Sand Bear, Desert Killer, Sandboil

Exciting stuff. Compelling and rich.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.42.1  The Phantom Village
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Weresnake (#95), Kornago (#86), Cursed Being (#97), Slug (#154), Gloom Widow
  (#155), Mykale (#156)

  Container contents:
  Thief Knife

  Miscellaneous items:
  Mirage Vest

  Features:
  Piano

In Crescent, you heard about villages appearing in the forest. Time to
investigate, it's not like we've got anything going on at the moment except for
that saving-the-world thing and the recent departure of all that we hold dear.
At our destination, we're going to go on an unholy shopping spree that dwarves
even our worst nightmares we have about taking our girlfriends into town; best
be prepared. If you want more Gil, I'd advise you to sail around in the lake
near Crescent, where Rukh enemies give you 5000 Gil and have a rare Murasame
for you to Steal and Sea Devils give 3000 Gil a kill and have a rare Defender.
Rukhs succumb to Sleep/Time Slip, Sea Devils can be quickly dispatched by Odin
or Thundaga spells.

  Grassland and forests near Crescent
  35 % Mykale, Slug x3
  35 % Mykale, Gloom Widow, Slug
  30 % Mykale x2

  Forests around the Phantom Village
  35 % Cursed Being x2, Weresnake, Kornago
  35 % Kornago x3
  23 % Cursed Being, Kornago x2
   6 % Cursed Being x2, Weresnake, Kornago

Kornago From Crescent, follow the streak of land to the south-west. The third
patch of forest is the one we want. Walk around, and about half of the battles
you encounter won't be a battle at all; it'll take you straight into the
Phantom Village, a town that was sealed - accidentally - within the
Interdimensional Rift together with the Void and all the vile demons a 1000
years ago. Today's lesson; when you're immortal, you talk like a douchebag...

This city is littered with hidden passages that you'll only be able to see with
the Passages support ability present. I'll take you through all its features.
First, find the Armor Shop.

Armor Shop 1:
Crystal Shield      2500 Gil
Crystal Helm       10500 Gil
Black Cowl          6500 Gil
Circlet             4500 Gil
Crystal Armor      12000 Gil
Black Garb          9000 Gil
Black Robe          8000 Gil
White Robe          8000 Gil
 All straightforward stuff, really. This town features the last shops where
you'll get better equipment, so make it count. You should have some Heavy Armor
that's equal to what's sold here. Black Robes are better than White Robes. The
Circlet is pretty much the first helmet for Mages that can best the Lamia's
Tiara; it gives as much Magic Power boosting and has quite a lot more Defense
than the Tiara.

The crate on the shop can be examined to open a path to the second Armor Shop.

Armor Shop 2:
Hermes Sandals     50000 Gil
Angel Ring         50000 Gil
Flame Ring         50000 Gil
Coral Ring         50000 Gil
Lamia's Tiara       2500 Gil
Angel Robe          3000 Gil
 If you stole everything you could've stolen so far, you have all the Angel and
Flame Rings you could ever use. In addition, you don't have a lot of use for
Coral Rings in the near future (though you'll want four end-game). Lamia's
Tiara can be found in the Pyramid of Moore, the Angel Robe is largely inferior
to something like the Black Robe. No, the grand item here is the Hermes
Sandals. What do they do? They grant the wearer inherent Haste, and this tidbit
makes them the best accessories in the game.

Protect Rings are awesome as all-round protective accessories. When the boss
fight in question features certain elemental attacks, you probably want to
resort to Flame or Coral Rings. For some characters, a Thief's Gloves, Kornago
Gourd or Kaiser Knuckles is needed for what you want to do. But the Hermes
Sandals, in my humble opinion, are what you should be wearing when you don't
have a specific reason to be wearing something specific. They allow you take
twice as many turns. You don't defend as well as you could be doing, but you
absorb far fewer hits, can react faster to a surprise attack and when a
character with Hermes Sandals is killed, they'll still have Haste when revived,
something Hastega can't do for you. Finally, these miracle shoes make the
wearer immune to Slow, Stop, Paralyze and Sleep. So good. 

Of course, for boss battles it's a viable strategy to take them off and equip
Angel Rings or Protect Rings because you know you're going to cast Hastega; if
dying is improbable, it's worth considering.

...anyway, if you have the Gil, buy four.

Now, leave the Armor Shop and find the Weapon Shop.

Weapon Shop 1:
Flametonque        10000 Gil
Icebrand           11000 Gil
Gaia Hammer        12800 Gil
Morning Star        7800 Gil
Rune Bow           10000 Gil
Kiku-ichimonji     14800 Gil
Partisan           10200 Gil
 New items include the Rune Bow and the Kiku-ichimonji. The former is useless.
Very, very useless. It's a Bow that sets Silence 1/3 if the time. And deals NO
DAMAMGE. Also, you can wield it in one hand? The Kiku is a stronger Katana than
the Osafune. If you picked up the Masamune earlier, or if you stole a Murasame
from a Rukh you can find on the oceans, this is useless to you. If not, grab
one. There's no specific reason you should buy anything else here.

Magic Shop 1:
Mini                 300 Gil
Toad                 300 Gil
Speed                 30 Gil
Float                300 Gil
Teleport             600 Gil
Chocobo              300 Gil
Sylph                350 Gil
Remora               250 Gil
 Presto, all the spells you could've found somewhere and could never buy in a
shop. This except the elementary summon spells, which you can no longer
purchase in Walse (since it's gone). Around the back is where the good stuff's
at. Walk outside and approach the shop from the left, in the back.

Magic Shop 2:
Arise              10000 Gil
Dispel             10000 Gil
Death              10000 Gil
Osmose             10000 Gil
Quick              10000 Gil
Banish             10000 Gil
 Some sweet moves are added to your arsenal. They're from the sixth and last
level of the Black, White and Time schools of magic, how could they not be
awesome? Arise recovers a KO'd character with full HP while Dispel removes all
positive magic effects from a target; you already had this spell at your
disposal if you had a Judgment Staff, but here it is legit. Death simply sets
Death on a single target while Osmose drains MP. Banish can instantly destroy
a non-Heavy target, but its hit rate isn't too hot. Its fluff indicates that
targets Banished are sent to the Interdimensional Rift, so that's something
fun. Quick is crazy; it sets the character casting it in some sort of time hole,
giving him or her two turns while the rest of the battlefield takes no action.
It's real great but also crazy expensive on MP; 99 MP plus two spells (or five
with !Dualcast) absolutely destroys your MP reserve. It is likely Gil is running
low now; the only truly useful spell you won't want to miss is Arise.

Item Shop:
Potion                40 Gil
Hi-Potion            360 Gil
Phoenix Down        1000 Gil
Maiden's Kiss         60 Gil
Antidote              30 Gil
Eye Drops             20 Gil
Gold Needle          150 Gil
Mallet                50 Gil

Elixir             50000 Gil
Ether               1500 Gil
Holy Water           150 Gil
Goliath Tonic        110 Gil
Power Drink          110 Gil
Speed Shake          110 Gil
Iron Draft           110 Gil
Hero Cocktail        110 Gil
 The item shop owners here don't believe in Cottages; they've been stuck in the
same town frozen in time for a 1000 years; camping gear outlets have really
suffered from it financially. They do, however, sell Elixirs are the downright
ridiculous prize of 50000 Gil. You can buy 833 Maiden's Kisses with 50000 Gil.
What'd you rather have, a refill on your HP and MP or enough booty for a
lifetime at your every convenience?

Find the hidden entrance to the Pub on the back side which'll get you after the
bar. One of the barrels contains a Thief Knife, a Knife with a curved blade
that uses !Mug instead of !Attack half of the time. You'll have to corner the 
bartender to get it. Leave using the stairs. The Thief Knife follows the same 
logic as the Chicken Knife in that it will not use !Mug with !Store, !Jump, 
!Dance.

Here, you'll encounter a challenge; travel around the world with Boko and
obtain a fabulous price. The price in question is a Mirage Vest, some Clothes
which is a bit less defensive than the Black Garb but gives the wearer a single
Image at the start of every battle, making him or her evade any single physical
attack which comes his or her way. It's very awesome, so I suggest you take the
tour. I'll talk about the tour later.

Continue. A townsman mentions there's a piano here somewhere. You walk past a
pot containing Life of a Recovery Spring. After this room, you'll find yourself
in a tunnel under the Phantom Village. To the right is a door that opens into
the Interdimensional Rift which is blown shut every time you open it. To the
far right is a stairway which leads you to the second Weapon Shop.

Weapon Shop 2:
Fuma Shuriken      25000 Gil
Shuriken            2500 Gil
Twin Lance         10800 Gil
Moonring Blade      1100 Gil
Flame Scroll         200 Gil
Water Scroll         200 Gil
Lightning Scroll     200 Gil
 Ninja stuff. The only thing you could take from this list is another Twin
Lance if you were lazy in the face of your forefathers. And Objet d'Arts, lazy
in their face too.

Head back into the tunnel, but instead go to the far left. Rather than hitting
a wall, there's a hidden passage. You can use your Thieves to see it. Ignore
the stairway you encounter for now, just push on until you reach the eight and
final piano. Sitting on your stool, you now play the opening of Arabesque
number one from Debussy's Deux Arabesques.

"You have mastered the piano!!! All others quake in fear at your superhuman
keyboard manipulation skill!"

Get your ass to the stairway you passed up earlier. Here, you can catch the
Black Chocobo! Grab it, you'll need it later to enter an area you can't access
by any other means.

Note: you can land the Black Chocobo in the middle of the forest west of the
Desert of the Shifting Sands, the forest that once was the Great Forest of
Moore. This prevents you from ever mounting the Chocobo ever again. This can
lock up your progress in the worst case and prevent you from ever reaching
certain area's in a mildly less bad situation. Bad idea, don't do it.

If you want to, you can fly the Black Chocobo to the great desert to the
north-east. Find the forest and roam around the sands. If you encounter a
Landcrawler, know that you can steal a rare Defender Knightsword from him.

Return to Crescent and visit the Bard there. Play Debussy's most famous
arabesque for the good man on his piano, and amaze the everlastin' coocoo out
of him. The Hero's Rime will increase your level during battle. Well, not
really. It just increases your level for purposes of damage calculation, but
your effective level for purposes of Goblin Punch, Level # Blue spells and the
like will remain the same, unlike levels gained through Hero Cocktails and
such.

Finally, fly the Airship to Boko. If you tour around the world, meet up with
the Airship again and fly back to the Phantom Village, you'll get your Mirage
Vest. Your tour will follow the following places:

Travel north-west 'til you reach Karnak, then go south to the best of your
ability until you see Surgate Castle. Further south lies Quelb; the townswolves
here have little interesting to say. Go south even further 'til you see Bal
Castle, then turn to the east for a bit until you can get between the mountains
to travel along the thin strip of land that connects the continent with
Crescent Island. Pass Crescent and go north until you reach the hole in the
earth that once was Tycoon Castle. From here, find Ghido's former cave again;
Ta-da! You have now traveled across the world! Go take the airship to collect
your spoils in the Phantom Village.

But there is one more thing you must do for me first.

Take Boko to Istory Falls. Go Eastwards now, past Tule, up past the Sealed
Castle, past Regole, all the way west until you encounter a collection of
connected rivers. Enter these rivers and scout until you find the waterfall.
Just behind the waterfall on the Map, in the middle, you enter the place. Take
one step forward to find the Magic Lamp. Details on this wondrous item can be
found in section 8.3.1. It's a very useful item, so make sure to swing by and
grab it. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.43.1  The Island Shrine; the Wind tablet
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Prototype (#56), Mecha Head (#150), The Damned (#151), Executor (#157),
  Oiseaurare (#158), Shadow Dancer (#159), Numb Blade (#160), Tot Aevis (#161),
  Covert (-), Pantera (-), Wendigo (#289)

  Container contents:
  9000 Gil, 12000 Gil, Beast Killer, Circlet, Crystal Helm, Dark Matter, Dragon
  Fang, Elixir, Ether x 2, Hi-Potion, Iron Draft, Protect Ring, Rising Sun

  Miscellaneous items:
  Mirage Vest (rare Oiseaurare steal), Dancing Dagger (rare Shadow Dancer
  steal), Ice Shield (rare Numb Blade steal), Aevis Killer (common Tot Aevis
  steal, rare Tot Aevis drop)

  Features:
  Tablet

  Spells:
  Level 2 Old, Level 3 Flare, Level 4 Graviga, Level 5 Death, Doom, Off-Guard,
  ???, Missile, Flame Thrower, Self-Destruct, Mind Blast

"One rests within an island shrine, kissed by wind..."

In the middle of the World Map there's a large sea. On the southern edge, you
can see an island which turns out to have appeared right in the middle of the
Big Bridge. The Island Shrine existed earlier, but surrounded by mountains you
had no way to enter it. Now, the path is open.

Guarding the doorway are two Gargoyles. You've fought them earlier, so you know
how to deal with them. Remember: Yes to Berserk, no to Holy! Excalibur and the
Holy Lance are out. With Syldra at your side, Faris' old buddy is without a
doubt the easiest way of clearing out the battlefield against these grey
guardians; boosted by Air Knives, Magus Rod or possibly even Wind Slash or Rune
Chime, the post-mortem plesiosaurus deals great amounts of damage.

  All rooms leading to first pipe and switch room:
  35 % Executor
  35 % Executor x 3
  23 % Oiseaurare x 2
   6 % Tot Aevis

  Rooms the pipes lead to:
  35 % Shadow Dancer
  35 % Executor
  23 % Tot Aevis
   6 % Oiseaurare x 5

  2nd Floor and 4th Floor:
  35 % Shadow Dancer, Executor, Oiseaurare
  35 % The Damned, Oiseaurare
  23 % Oiseaurare x 5
   6 % Tot Aevis

  3rd Floor:
  35 % Oiseaurare x 2
  35 % Executor x 3, Oiseaurare
  23 % Executor
   6 % Tot Aevis

  5th Floor and 7th Floor:
  35 % Numb Blade x 2
  35 % Shadow Dancer, Executor, Oiseaurare
  23 % Tot Aevis
   6 % Oiseaurare x 5

The Damned hid in Pyramid of Moore chests all the freaking time, but they're
loose now. What's the deal with The Damned, anyway? They went to Harvard. They
practice law in prestigious New York firms. They're undead pests, vulnerable to
Level 4 Graviga. All this is common knowledge. But deep inside, what really
makes them tick?

Executor enemies will use every level-based Blue spell, ranging from Lv. 5
Death, Lv. 4 Graviga and Lv. 3 Flare to Lv. 2 Old. The Flare variant was
slightly problematic to obtain earlier, so you may want to learn it here. All
these spells can be Reflected, so that's a good way to defend yourselves if you
find your team vulnerable to the Death or Flare attacks. Level 3 Flare itself
is a great way to get rid of Executors if you want to give them a bun out of
their own oven. If you want to avoid death at all costs, it is possible to
learn Lv. 5 Death here by having only one character without Reflect Rings, and
having that character equipped with the Bone Mail. Lv. 5 Death, provided this
character has a suitable level, will only heal the character. 

Oiseaurare is the source for Mirage Vests, as you can rarely Steal one from
these enemies. They may appear in large large numbers, so you should have no
shortage of tries. Mirage Vests are great in combination with Hermes Sandals,
as you'll end fights before the Image status can be challenged twice. "Oiseau
rare" is french for 'rare bird'. Considering Oiseaurare is neither a bird nor
infrequent in the slightest, this is a case of dadaist humor not often found in
Japanese video games. They can cast Confuse spells on the first turn; Lamia's
Tiara, Ribbons, the Genji Helm and Bone Mail protect you from auto-mutilation.

The Mirage Vest sets a one-time Image status to the wearer. The Blink spell and
the Ninja's !Image action ability both set 2; the Mirage Vest just sets one. In
quick battles such as random encounters, they grant physical immunity to some
extent; they battle'll likely end before a character is hit twice. In longer
battles, a bug may be exploited; Mirage Vest's Image status is re-loaded every
time equipment's switched in-battle; send a Thief's dagger from the Right to
the Left Hand, the Image is back. Try it out, amaze your friends! Note that by
switching equipment in-battle, you also lose the powers of Resist Fire, Ice,
Lightning, Poison, Dragon Shield and Elemental Power. Nobody cares!

   iOS/Android: The reloading of the Image status upon tinkering with 
   equipment is fixed in this version. In addition, the Resist (element), 
   Elemental Power and Dragon Shield will also remain. 

Tot Aevis
Level: 47, HP: 33090, MP: 1000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 60%
Steal: Ether (rare), Aevis Killer (common)
Win: Aevis Killer (rare)
Absorbs: Wind
Nullifies: Earth
Status: (Always) Float
Creature: Heavy, Aevis
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Confuse, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Beak, Breath Wing

Tot Aevis is a fatass. It has 33090 HP, and is both Heavy and protected from
Death attacks. It has no elemental weaknesses, but absorbs Wind. You will be
fighting these things for a while. As a common steal, it has the Aevis Killer
Bow, which always scores a Critical Hit on the Aevis type (big birds). Why
would a big bird have its own death warrant with it? The questions of life are
hard questions to answer indeed. Tot Aevis may set Petrify with Beak, attack
physically and use Breath Wing. Since Tot Aevis strikes hard, Golem is a great
way of keeping you Not-Death, the preferred state. As you can see the Tot Aevis
is vulnerable to the Confuse status, but don't inflict it since Breath Wing 
heals Tot Aevis for 8272 HP when turned on itself. When you're done, you GET
NOTHING. You LOSE. GOOD DAY, SIR. Except possibly another Aevis Killer. For
this reason, it is entirely understandable if you just run from these birds.

The Aevis Killer is far more powerful than the Hayate Bow, and is a decent
alternative to Yoichi's Bow seeing as how Tot Aevis enemies appear here and are
such a humongous drag. Aevis Killers suffer no abnormal miss chance, so setting
Berserk with this Bow will not make it miss. That's a good thing to know.

Shadow Dancers will attack physically, but may also use Dancehall Daze to
inflict Sleep on a single target. They have a rare Dancing Dagger for stealing.
There is no reason why you should want one, but they're fun and you had only
one so far.

Numb Blade samurai have a rare Ice Shield for stealing! They're great in Knight
Single Job Challenges, help out against the boss fight of this place and are
generally good to have. Now that the exciting stuff is out of the way, the Dumb
Blade sets Paralyze with !Mineuchi. See! The !Mineuchi which the Samurai Job
learns after 10 ABP IS supposed to set Paralyze. I told you. These samurai have
no other special features. Syldra cleam them up good.

Being able to use !Steal successfully is a great thing in this dungeon, so
you'll probably want a Thief around. Chicken Knife + !Mug is a great idea you
might wish to employ. Syldra boosted by an Air Knife is exceedingly powerful at
the moment, so use it for crowd control. What's left is the challenge of the
Tot Aevis, so rise to meet it. Buff spells and an Aevis Killer are great
weapons. Since this fight takes so long, you might even find use for the buff
Songs from the Bard. Prepare against Confuse spells by Confuse-resistant
equipment or Reflect Rings that also help against the Executor's spells (but
remove the Thief's Gloves as an option).

Push through the heavy doors of the Island Shrine to find another apparently
featureless room. With Find Passages, you can see a hidden passage to the right
which takes you to a chest containing 12000 Gil.

The next room will take you to a pipe, which will suck you in. Here, in the
room with the switches, two treasures are hidden from you. On the wall to the
left, one tile above the bottom-right tile, you can find a Hi-Potion. In the
bottom-right corner, on the right wall, you can find an Iron Draft. Useless
items, but they're there and if you miss them you'll have to cry yourself to
sleep, I suppose.

Switches behave as follows:

Up/Up = Back to the entrance
Up/Down = Takes you to a chest containing an Elixir
Down/Down = Takes you to a chest containing 9000 Gil
Down/Up = Takes you further in.

Raid both the Elixir and 9000 Gil chests before pressing on; get back to the
switches room, flip the left one down and the right one up and get into that
inviting tube. Here, there's a chest containing either Covert or Pantera. Both
monsters are exclusive to being a monster-in-a-box in this chest, so you'll
never be able to defeat both on the same file (though you can see both by
opening the chest and running away a few times). Neither has a Bestiary entry,
so no worries there.

The Covert is a red-clad ninja who may attack physically or use either Wind
Slash or Blaze. It has 7000 HP. When you kill him, he'll go "Illusion" and
summon two of his kind before passing away. Since they overlap perfectly, you
won't see the first one die and the other two appear. Now, you'll have to fight
two Coverts but you'll only see one on the battlefield. After you've killed the
other two, the Covert will say "That's far enough!" and die. Golem is nice.

The Pantera is a super-Coeurl. It attacks physically and may randomly use
Blaster, which sets either Paralyze or Death, 50-50 chance. Sadly, the Pantera
battle is bugged. See, what was supposed to happen was this. When you allowed
Pantera to live for two turns, it would summon two images of itself. 
"Illusion!" One of them would randomly be the 'real' Pantera and take damage.
However, rather than starting this switch-eroo, the Pantera's will actually 
self-terminate as a first turn after multiplying.

   iOS/Android: With a functioning Pantera battle. You'll see Pantera summon 
   two images. Once you've seen which target takes damage, you know which one
   to attack. Firaga spells are very powerful, since Pantera is weak to Fire-
   elemental attacks. Pantera won't start using Blaster until after he summons
   the images, but Carbuncle or Reflect Rings bounce off Blaster attacks so
   no worries there. You cannot run from either the Covert or Pantera battle,
   though. 

Regardless of its guardian, you'll get a Rising Sun for you trouble, which is
basically an upgraded version of your Moonring Blade, a Thief- and Ninja-
specific weapon which deals the same amount of damage from the Back Row. It is
not a bad weapon, but is badly outperformed by the many other great weapons
you've obtained (magic-boosting ones, Chicken Knife, Assassin's Dagger). It is
also Aerial, so it will always hit those monsters that cannot avoid Aerial
weapons, which includes most Floating enemies. You'll want a Thief in here
anyway, and coupled with the Strength coming from Barehanded, the Rising Sun
will deal respectable amounts of damage.

Continue for a Save Point. Welcome to the 2nd Floor. To the left, you can find
a chest with an Ether. To the right, a secret passage detectable by a Thief
will lead you to a chest containing a Crystal Helm. Both are useless. In the
middle of the room is a chest containing either a Mecha Head or a Prototype.
The former is one of those mechanical menaces you found in the Pyramid of
Moore; the latter was the undefeatable thing you Controlled and Self-Destructed
for Dark Matters back in World 1. For whatever reason, bring a Mystic Knight;
the Mecha Head will instantly fall against Thundaga spellblade effects, and the
Prototype is vulnerable to Petrify, so Break Spellblade effects kill it
instantly. You'll get a Protect Ring for your troubles; the third one if you've
been following so far. Press on.

The third floor will place you directly for a door. Get in and grab the chest's
contents, a Beast Killer Whip. Lame! We got those a century ago, but it is
still a good Whip if you never got the Dragon's Whisker. On the rest of the
third floor, some trap halls exist which drop you down to the second floor.
Evade them with the Geomancer's Find Pits to protect you from ridicule from
your peers. Float does not work agains pitfalls. Note that the third floor can
pride itself on supreme Oiseaurare density, so if you're Mirage Vest hunting,
here's the place to be.

The fourth floor is featureless.

The fifth floor has two chests; another Ether and a Dragon Fang. If you
approach these chests directly, you'll find pitfalls instead; go around to grab
them and proceed. There are pitfalls around the exit.

The sixth floor is another Save Point.

The seventh floor has two chests: a Dark Matter to the left and a Circlet to
the right. In the middle, however, another tablet lies. This is the tablet that
will release the most powerful White spell and most powerful Black spell to you
in the form of entrance to Fork Tower. Cid, like Mid told you in Crescent, is
trapped underneath the tower, so we could both augment our own power and help
a friend in the meantime.

Oh yeah, and there's a boss battle. Wendigo, one of The Eleven of the Rift is
here to pull off two things Pantera could never hope to accomplish. First, a
successful trick of invulnerability and deception. Second, sweet bloody
victory.

Wendigo
Level: 7, HP: 20000, MP: 8192
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Dark Matter (common)
Absorbs: Water
Nullifies: Earth
Status: Float (always)
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Sleep, Slow
Attacks: Attack, Confuse, Mind Blast, Hurricane, Frost

I'm not sure what Wendigo stands for. A blue-ish apparition of a naked man with
a club and something strange on his forehead. He's like Dr. Manhatten, but a
bad guy.

The Wendigo has four bodies, but only one of them is vulnerable to harm. At
every time he takes HP damage, he'll jump to a random body and set his current
HP to all four targets. For the fake targets this doesn't matter since they're
invulernable to harm, but it ensures that Wendigo has only 20000 HP, and any
damage you do in whatever body he's in will count down on the same 20000 HP.
Whenever you use an MT attack (even those that deal no damage, such as Flash),
all three decoy bodies will retaliate with Frost. An exception here is the Wind
Slash katana's Gale Cut attack, but that's not exactly a solid strategy basis.
The switching of bodies doesn't start until you first hurt Wendigo, so the
first strike will always land. This makes it a decent idea to, say, release a
Bulette at the start of the battle to hit for a lot of damage. In this initial
attack, the Wendigo body with the MOST damage taken is the one that from that
point on will be the 'real' Wendigo's HP that's jumping across blue naked
bodies.

The Wendigo may randomly use an attack called Mind Blast. This magical attack
is non-elemental and barrier-piercing and sets both Paralyze and Sap. It's a
Blue spell that'll be of use later on; it's very cheap, both Paralyze and Sap
can hardly ever be set by your characters and since it's non-elemental, it's
never absorbed. It IS Reflectable, though. It's a Blue spell! If you're set on
learning it, don't use Carbuncle. His other attacks are not as noteworthy;
Hurricane misses very often due to Wendigo's low level, as does Confuse. His
attacks look like the Fire Lash, even though he carries a spectral club. How
delightfully eccentric!

The Wendigo's attacks are few and weak, so it's just a battle against the
annoyance of having to target up to three targets before you hit the right one.
Flame Rings and the Ice Shields you can steal in this very room both nullify
and absorb the Frost attack; in the Ice Shield's case, Sap will still be set.
Mind Blast (also, Confuse) can be reflected, so Carbuncle is a good idea. That
and Golem, and you're a long way to winning the battle. If you're not one for
games, apply Resist Ice (Mix a Phoenix Down with some Antidote) or Ice Shields
to everybody, then let loose with your best MT attacks, likely boosted Syldra
and/or !Zeninage. If you'd rather play it 'fair', it's best if you have some
power behind your blows; having a Bard buff you during the battle is not a bad
idea, specifically since you got the Bard's Best Song In The World not too long
ago. Single-target boosted Black -aga spells are also quite powerful.

Another status ailment you can set is Sleep. Sleeping fake targets will not
retaliate with Frost attacks, nor will Sleeping 'real' Stalkers jump to other
bodies. If you set Sleep to all targets at the start of the battle before
dealing any damage and provoking the body-switching, you can just unleash
powerful MT magical attacks to all four opponents.

When the Wendigo is Wendigone, you gain the Second Tablet, you can return to 
the Sealed Castle and you can pick three more Legendary Weapons. For the next 
dungeon, Sasuke's Katana may prove useful due to its blocking nature while 
Yoichi's Bow is a powerful physical weapon that allows the Back Row. Since the
Holy spell becomes available before you obtain the next Tablet, the Sage Staff 
is another good option. Note also that the Mirage Vest is a godsend in the 
Fork Tower; might want to get at least one (you'll get one from that NPC in 
the Phantom Village) before you continue. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.44.1  Fork Tower; the fight against Minotaur and Omniscient
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Goblin (#1), Mani Wizard (#11), Bandersnatch (#19), Ricard Mage (#27), Tiny
  Mage (#162), Chrono Controller (#163), Flaremancer (#164), Dueling Knight
  (#165), Iron Muscles (#166), Berserker (#167), Minotaur (#291), Omniscient
  (#292)

  Container contents:
  Defender, Ether, Hi-Potion, Wonder Wand

  Miscellaneous items:
  Flame Shield (rare Dueling Knight steal), Healing Staff (rare Chrono
  Controller steal), Blitz Whip (rare Flaremancer steal), Kornago Gourd
  (rare Omniscient steal)

  White spells:
  Holy

  Black spells:
  Flare

"The tower of strength is the one on the right. Cast spells if you will; won't
help in a fight."

"The tower on the left is the magic path. Even if you've got muscles, enemies
just laugh."

Flawed poetry describing cardboard means of gaining power; how neat does it
get? The Fork Tower is located on Crescent Island, or what once was Crescent
Island I guess. It's thing surrounded by a desert so small it's pretty much
just a pile of sand. There are two towers on this thing. The left one is the
Black Tower; every enemy here will rip you apart the moment you attack with
anything but Magic attacks, so you have little choice. The right tower is the
White Tower, where muscles mean awesome and spellcasting is for little fairy
boys.

First, you'll have to split your party into two parties. It would seem only
logical to send two characters to each end of the tower. Know that once you
have a Reflect Ring, the entire Black Tower is a walk in the park. It's the
Tower of Power that can get you a little trouble, so you could choose to split
1/3. At any rate, neither of the two towers are very hard and only the guardian
of the Holy spell presents some actual challenge, so you decide.

The Black Tower of Magicks is to the left, the White Tower of Prowess is to the
right.

Black Tower:

  Exterior regions, 5th Floor and 8th Floor:
  35 % Tiny Mage x 2
  35 % Chrono Controller
  23 % Tiny Mage x 4
   6 % Mani Wizard x 3

  2nd Floor and 6th Floor:
  35 % Tiny Mage x 4
  35 % Chrono Controller x 2, Tiny Mage
  23 % Flaremancer
   6 % Mani Wizard x 3

  3rd Floor, last exterior region and 9th Floor:
  35 % Flaremancer
  35 % Flaremancer x 2
  23 % Flaremancer, Chrono Controller, Tiny Mage
   6 % Ricard Mage x 3

  4th Floor and 7th Floor:
  35 % Flaremancer, Chrono Controller, Tiny Mage
  35 % Tiny Mage x 2
  23 % Chrono Controller
   6 % Ricard Mage x 3

White Tower:

  Exterior regions, 5th Floor and 8th Floor:
  35 % Dueling Knight
  35 % Iron Muscles
  23 % Dueling Knight x 2
   6 % Goblin x 3

  2nd Floor and 6th Floor:
  35 % Dueling Knight x 2
  35 % Iron Muscles, Dueling Knight
  23 % Berserker
   6 % Goblin x 3

  3rd Floor, last exterior region and 9th Floor:
  35 % Berserker
  35 % Berserker, Iron Muscles, Dueling Knight
  23 % Berserker x 3
   6 % Bandersnatch x 3

  4th Floor and 7th Floor:
  35 % Berserker x 3
  35 % Iron Muscles
  23 % Berserker
   6 % Bandersnatch x 3

You start in the Black Tower, so let's talk about the wizards here first...

The Tiny Mage is the White Mage of the Black Tower; it casts only White magic,
making its only actually dangerous attacks Confuse. Normally, Mini would be bad
to you, but since it only affects physical attributes and you'll be casting
Magic anyway, never mind. The spells the Tiny Mage uses include: Cura, Confuse,
Shell, Mini, Libra, Dispel. When struck by a non-Magic attack, it will
retaliate with a single Encircle attack, removing one of your characters from
the battlefield. Don't.

The Chrono Controller is the Time Mage of the Black Tower. The spells it can
cast are: Graviga, Slow, Regen, Float, Gravity, Comet, Slowga, Old, Banish and
Hastega. Of these, the only really bad one is Banish, it won't use it until its
fourth turn so you should've long since dispatched them by then. When struck by
a non-Magic attack, it will counter with a Meteor spell, which is bad business.
Should you want to steal one of its Healing Staves, note that Steal causes a
Meteor counter. The Chrono Controller can be Silenced, so use that to your
advantage.

The Flaremancer is the Black Mage and the most dangerous opponent of the Black
Tower. It's one of the four demons the Necromancer Job can summon later in the
game, where it uses a Flare spell. It can cast Fira, Blizzara, Thundara, Bio,
Break, Firaga, Blizzaga and Thundaga. When struck by a non-Magic attack, he'll
counter with two (Strong) Attack physical attacks doing 9999 damage. The
Flaremancer has a rare Blitz Whip you can steal. Useless, but if you really
want to go for one you'd best Berserk the Flaremancer before attempting to
touch the creature's possessions as it'll counter your !Steal attempts.

Mind if I don't discuss the Ricard Mages and ManiWizards? Merci.

With Reflect Rings, no attack will ever touch you. Make absolutely sure to
never, never use anything that's not !White, !Time, !Black, !Summon, !Red or
!Blue on the opponents here. If you're not interested in fighting these guys,
it is almost impossible to flee manually, so use Teleport spells or the action
abilities. You should quickly rush to the top. The path is very 
straightforward; on the fourth floor you'll find an Ether; on the seventh floor
you'll find the Wonder Wand.

The Wonder Wand will cast the weakest White spell (Cure) and work it's way up
from there, skipping Libra, up to Holy and Dispel. It'll even cast these spells
if you haven't bought or found them yet. When done with all White spells, it'll
start with Black spells from Fire to Flare and Death. When prepared right, this
Rod can fire off Firaga, Thundaga, Blizzaga and Flare in four subsequent turns,
even when the character wielding the Rod is Silenced, can't cast any magic due
to Mute or has no MP. The Wonder Wand also casts Return when used an item
without breaking, so in the very very few battles where Mute is present from
the get-go, you can still cast Return with the Wonder Wand. Note that there is
only a single byte that governs what spells are 'up' for casting for any given
Wonder Wand; should you get another one (which is possible), the list of spells
is shared between Wonder Wands. To make it even more clear; Dual-Wielding
Wonder Wands will get you two subsequent spells, such as Cure with the right
hand and Poisona with the left hand.

When your character(s) is/are at the eight floor of the Black Tower, it's
almost time for the switch. NOW is your chance to equip and prepare for the
boss of the Black Tower! When you're at the top of the Black Tower, you'll skip
to your party in the White Tower. So, time to discuss those!

The Dueling Knight is the only enemy that will respond to you using Magic; the
White Tower is far more lenient when it comes to the rules. When struck by
Magic, the Dueling Knight will say that Magic is forbidden and counter with
four physical attacks you'll easily survive. The Dueling Knight also has a rare
Flame Shield you can steal; getting up to four in your inventory is an
unnecessary luxury, but there is a battle where Fire resistance is very
important and you may not want to muck about with Flame Rings in that battle.

Iron Muscles is big, fat and stupid. It hits. Kill it.

The same goes for Berserker, though they can be more easily forgiven for their
silliness since they rarely drop Death Sickles.

Mirage Vests, Hermes Shoes and powerful weapons will get you through this
location easily. Yoichi's Bow, the Gaia Hammer and the Dragon's Whisker/Fire
Lash are powerful weapons which deal as much damage from the back row. You
almost can't run from these guys, so use !Flee or !Smoke if you want to. 

The White Tower mirrors the Black Tower in lay-out. On the fourth floor you'll
find a Hi-Potion, and on the seventh floor you'll find a chest containing a
Defender, a new Knightsword. The Defender tends to see little air-time since
it's likely you already have either a fully powered Brave Blade or the
legendary Excalibur, but the Defender is actually a very decent weapon. You
could've stolen them earlier from Sea Devils or Landcrawlers, but here it is
lying around in a chest. It has the same inherent 25 % evasive abilities the
Main Gauche has, it has a very solid Battle Power and it casts Protect when
used as an item without breaking.

At the top of the White Tower, you can fight Minotaurus, the brother of Sekhmet
and the guardian of the ultimate White spell, Holy.

Minotaur
Level: 37, HP: 19850, MP: 0
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Fuma Shuriken (rare), Leather Shoes (common)
Absorbs: Water, Earth, Holy, Poison, Nullifies: Earth
Creature: Heavy, Humanoid
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Holy

The Minotaur attacks physically only. Within the battle, the effects of Mute
will be set so you can't cast Magic versus the Minotaur. Key here is the
protection from physical attacks. The Mirage Vest is a great asset, as is the
Knight's !Guard and Cover abilities. As always, the !Guard/Counter strategy
ensures your victory as Minotaur will not be able to damage you. The Defender
is a grand equip in the fight; you can 'cast' Protect with it while it would
otherwise be more difficult and require the !Drink or !Mix ability.

With the Magic Lamp, you can summon Golem which is a blessing in this fight.
The !Image ability also helps a lot as you can use it to nullify up to two
attacks. The Wonder Wand, in addition to the Defender Sword, allows you to set
Protect on a character, which is definitely a plus. You might want to equip the
Wonder Wand anyway so you can try to get the Fuma Shuriken from the Minotaur.
Should that be the case, I suggest a Red Mage with a Lamia's Tiara equipped;
when you don't need the Wonder Wand, you can equip the Dancing Dagger and
attack physically, dealing about 3000 damage. If you have a Rune Blade, that's
an easier option to consider. Finally, consider the Chemist. It has the ability
to set Protect and Haste and can double its HP, and can heal 1000 HP with a
Hi-Potion. If you have action abilities that allow a Chemist to do some kind
of worthwhile damage, such as Barehanded, !Throw or Equip Bows, you'll be
good to go. 

The Minotaur is a tough fight since its attacks are powerful and you don't have
a full party, but since all of his attacks are relatively easily countered you
can defeat him without much trouble. When Minotaur dies, he'll cast Holy but
lack the MP; with an Ether you could've allowed him to actually cast the spell;
it doesn't do over 1000 damage to a single target.

Within a second or 5, you'll have to interact with the red sphere to engage in
a fight with the Omniscient, or else Fork Tower will explode in a fashion
similar to how Karnak Castle would have exploded if you let the timer run out.

Omniscient
Level: 53, HP: 16999, MP: 30000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 8
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Kornago Gourd (rare), Potion (common)
Weakness: Wind
Status: Protect, Shell, Regen
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Old, Paralyze, Berserk, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Cure, Libra, Silence, Mini, Cura, Confuse, Reflect, Fire, Blizzard,
  Poison, Toad, Fira, Blizzara, Thundara, Drain, Bio, Firaga, Blizzaga,
  Thundaga, Slow, Regen, Haste, Float, Gravity, Stop, Graviga, Return, Flare

Omnisicent the all-knowing arcanist randomly casts any of the above spells. Of
course, there's a certain pattern to it, but it's not of any importance. When
Omniscient hits 4000 HP, his attack pattern changes and he won't cast anything
but 5th tier Black magic, which deals over 2000 damage to a single target. Upon
defeat Omniscient will cast Flare.

When wearing Reflect Rings you'll be immune to all of the wizard's attacks,
disregarding Drain. This, however, does not guarantee your victory as
Omniscient's Regen status will keep him healed from his spells that will
reflect off you. His weakness to Wind-elemental attacks cannot be exploited
with !Gaia, but Aeroga and Syldra's Thunderstorm - boosted, naturally - really
hurt him. If you can cast Dispel, you can remove his Shell status to double
your damage output, but since Omniscient shouldn't be able to hurt you at
all, it's not very important. 

The thing to this fight is the Kornago Gourd. There are only two of them in
this game, and this is the second. Every non-Magic command is countered by a
Return spell by Omniscient. Every non-Magic command? Nah, just for the occasion,
and because you've finished your plate like a good boy for the past three
years, Square made an exception and you get to use !Steal without having him
use Return. So, a Thief with !Blue or !Summon (a Thief can equip the Air Knife)
is awesome to bring into the battle. The Reflect Ring takes priority over the
Thief's Gloves so you might find yourself missing a few Steal attempts, but
eventually you'll wade through all the Potions and get your Gourd. Note that
using the Judgment Staff to 'cast' Dispel will cause Omniscient to counter with
Return.

If you lack Reflect Rings, by the way, you can set it with Reflect, Carbuncle's
Ruby Light and Dragon Defense (Dragon Fang + Phoenix Down), but you'll have to
make sure it stays in the fight as non-inherent Reflect tends to fade off after
a while.

The fight with Omniscient isn't a difficult one, and when it's all over Fork
Tower fades from this existence to pass into another. The Catapult, restplace
of the airship, is now freed so we can free Cid.

Holy is a massively powerful spell, and your only source of Holy-elemental
damage. Its power can be boosted by the Sage's Staff and the Rune Chime, the
latter which you probably hadn't have access to (it's a rare drop in the final
dungeon). Flare is non-elemental and therefor weaker than boosted -aga spells.
It does almost entirely disregard the target's Magic Defense, and looks pretty
spiffy. They're also Spellblade effects. Holy is just like Firaga and the
like, but Holy-elemental. Flare adds 100 to the blade's Battle Power and
let's the attack use only 25% of the target's Defense; Flare is the only
Spellblade effect that simply powers up the blade (significnatly!) without
having to check for elemental properties.

When you're done, the Tower has disappeared and the Catapult is open once
again. Fly your Airship into it to find Cid. Down in the stairs in the room
with that button that opened the hole all that time ago. Cutscences,
cutscenes.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.45.1  The sunken Tower of Walse; Famed Mimic Gogo and the 'final' shard
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Moldwynd (#10), Elf Toad (#25), Jackanapes (#30), Crew Dust (#37), Bomb (#49),
  Black Flame (#53), Prototype (#56), Dhorme Chimera (#58), Enchanted Fan (#65),
  Treant (#74), Birostris (#81), Drippy (#100), Dark Aspic, (#113), Lamia Queen
  (#143), Famed Mimic Gogo (#297)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Thornlet (rare Lamia Queen steal), Gold Hairpin (rare Famed Mimic Gogo steal)

  Blue spells:
  Lv. 2 Old, Lv. 3 Flare, Lv. 4 Graviga, Lv. 5 Death, Missile, Flame
  Thrower, Self-Destruct, Time Slip, Moon Flure, Aero, ???, 1000 Needles, Aqua
  Breath, Magic Hammer, Death Claw, White Wind, Aero, Goblin Punch, Dark Spark,
  Pond's Chorus, Lilliputian Lyric, Flash, Transfusion, Aeroga, Vampire

NOTE: At the end of this submerged tower, you'll quarrel with an opponent over
the a crystal shard, but you don't actually (have to) beat him in order to
obtain it. In fact, Famed Mimic Gogo is quite unbeatable... but not entirely.
If you want to defeat this thing, you should not dive into this dungeon now but
wait until the very end of the game. If this is your madness, you can already
sneak a peek at how this will be accomplished: [GOGO-LINK]

Enter the Catapult. You'll find Cid trapped in a spinning wheel. Mid appears
from nowhere, even though he has no actual means to reach the Catapult. And
just because it seems to be theme for today, they decide to mess with your
airship for no apparent reason at all. When all is over and you're grown past
the fact they actually re-used an old cutscene, you can scoot. Faris suggest we
try to find the third tablet which lies under the ocean's floor, but we have
other things to do.

Underwater, you will find four dots catching your attention. The one in the
middle of nowhere is the location of the Third Tablet, but we're going to let
it slide for now. The western-most sparkle is just the location of the lake
near Moore, which you once used as your only entry point. The north- western
dots is the location of the Fourth Tablet, but we're going to ignore that one
as well!

Just south of Karnak, you can take the submarine to a hidden cavern where Mr.
Clio the Psychic lives. He'll give you useless info, but it's fun. His name is
not from Japan (he's nameless in the original game), but a reference to Miss
Cleo, some self-proclaimed psychic shaman woman from the States.

Remember the place where I told you you could find Stingray? Beneath the vast
Gloceana Desert, you can submerge the airship to find the sunken Tower of
Walse. It still holds one of the crystal shards of the Water Crystal, and we
need all the help we can get versus Exdeath and its minions. Let's dive in!

When you leave the Airshupmarine, you'll get a timer of 7:00 minutes. If you
run out of breath, you die! This is not something that should happen. No
worries, it's not very hard. All the monsters here have been rendered black, so
there's no telling who or what they are. However, I've listed them!

  Top Floor:
  42 % Traveler, Jackanapes, Moldwynd
  35 % Level Checker, Prototype
  23 % Bomb, Wild Nakk, Lamia Queen

  Nineth Floor:
  42 % Enchanted Fan, Goblin, Black Flame
  35 % Dhorme Chimera, Drippy, Treant
  23 % Elf Toad, Mini Magician, Crew Dust

  Eight Floor:
  42 % Birostris, Magic Dragon, Dark Aspic
  35 % Elf Toad, Mini Magician, Crew Dust
  23 % Traveler, Jackanapes, Moldwynd

  Seventh Floor:
  42 % Bomb, Wild Nakk, Lamia Queen
  35 % Traveler, Jackanapes, Moldwynd
  23 % Enchanted Fan, Goblin, Black Flame

  Sixth Floor:
  35 % Enchanted Fan, Goblin, Black Flame
  35 % Level Checker, Prototype
  30 % Birostris, Magic Dragon, Dark Aspic

 Fifth Floor:
  35 % Birostris, Magic Dragon, Dark Aspic
  35 % Dhorme Chimera, Drippy, Treant
  23 % Bomb, Wilk Nakk, Lamia Queen
   6 % Enchanted Fan, Goblin, Black Flame

  Fourth Floor:
  35 % Bomb, Wild Nakk, Lamia Queen
  35 % Elf Toad, Mini Magician, Crew Dust
  23 % Level Checker, Prototype
   6 % Traveler, Jackanapes, Moldwynd

  Third Floor:
  35 % Level Checker, Prototype
  35 % Traveler, Jackanapes, Moldwynd
  23 % Dhorme Chimera, Drippy, Treant
   6 % Elf Toad, Mini Magician, Crew Dust

  Second Floor:
  42 % Dhorme Chimera, Drippy, Treant
  35 % Enchanted Fan, Goblin, Black Flame
  23 % Elf Toad, Mini Magician, Crew Dust

  First Floor:
  35 % Elf Toad, Mini Magician, Crew Dust
  35 % Birostris, Magic Dragon, Dark Aspic
  23 % Dhorme Chimera, Drippy, Treant
   6 % Level Checker, Prototype

The only enemy really worth nothing specifically in this context is Prototype.
Unless you have !Control (so you can make it Self-Destruct) or any means of
setting Petrify (Break, Break !Spellblade, Catoblepas), you are in a for a long
long battle you don't have the time for. Have one of the above. !Rapid Fire
cuts through its defenses nicely as well, but doesn't work quite as fast.

There is one new enemy as well: the Level Checker. It checks your level, then
disregards than information and drives into walls. Seriously, it does not
modify its level-based attacks at all, it's just curious or something. Search
can be Reflected! Nobody cares. It may rarely drop an Elixir.

It's interesting to note how every enemy, though seemingly randomly selected,
is the stereotypical tutor of a Blue spell. Not all Blue magic can be learned
here, but a great deal of spells you could have learned so far are present here
if you missed them earlier. The ones that are missing are Doom, Roulette,
Aeroga, Off-Guard, Mind Blast and Mighty Guard.

You know where to go! Fight through unseen enemies from the past. If you use
the 'Read Ahead' support ability here, which you probably don't have since you
must've waited for a good amount of chapters before you entered this Sunken
Tower to get the Job that teaches it, you don't encounter any enemies if you
just stick to the shortest path. On the fifth floor, a chest is closed.
Goodies? No, but you are able to restore your Air supply, setting the timer
back to 7:00.

At the first floor, you can find the final shard! A cryptic message appears
when you want to take it. "Yes" will do nothing. "No" will get you in trouble.
Before you answer "No", take some time to reflect on the fact you are about
to receive 50 ABP for free in this fight. You can send in any Job and you won't
have to worry about performance at all. The exception here being Berserkers,
you shouldn't bring those. You shouldn't bring them to lots of things; weddings,
job interviews, furry conventions. Novice Chemists can go from 0 to 50 ABP on
the Job, learning Pharmacology and !Mix in the process. Amateur Samurai can
learn !Zeninage in this fight, 

Famed Mimic Gogo
Level: 77, HP: 47714, MP: 60000
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 30%, Magic Evasion: 99%
Steal: Gold Hairpin (rare), Leather Armor (common)
Win: Tiger Mask (rare)
Nullifies: Water
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, (Strong) Attack, Holy, Flare, Meteo, 
  Maelstrom, Ice Storm, Aqua Breath, Frost

This is a very simple battle to win, since you don't have to do anything! Gogo
urges you to mimic his movements, and if you remain passive like him, he'll
eventually remove himself from the battlefield.

Famed Mimic Gogo, for all his outlandish attire and speech, is one of the most
difficult opponents in the game. If you provoke him with a physical attack
(including !Steal), he may either counter with a normal physical, !Critical
Attack or (Strong) Attack, which will kill a character. If you use a spell on 
him, even if it is benificial, he will counter with either a Holy, Flare or 
Meteo spell, which are all very powerful.

If you deal 14714 damage to him and survive to see it, he will become strongly
agitated. "You uncultured boors! Know you nothing of an artist's soul? Cut!
Cut! Stop TRYING to mimic! Start over, recenter, and begin!" Then, he will cast
Meteor thrice in a row and kill you with powerful attacks. You are not equipped
to handle this fight at all right now, so this is a Game Over for you.

Just do nothing! You could attempt to Steal that Gold Hairpin if you want, but
note that Return does not reset the global timer of drowning so you don't have
infinite attempts.

For the purposes of this walkthrough, I'm going to return here later with
better equipment options just to defeat this guy. You probably shouldn't, but
it's pretty much the same as you could do without the Mime Job no problem.

If you win, you get the Mime Job! The Mime should really just be seen as an
alternate Freelancer. Like the Freelancer, he obtains stats and inherent
support abilities of mastered Jobs. There is a differce, though. Freelancers
can equip every piece of equipment in the game and have two ability slots.
Mimes can equip almost every shield and piece of armor and accessory (even such
travesties as the Thief's Gloves and Angel Robe) except for the Ribbon set. On
weapons, the Mime can equip only Knives, Rods, Staves and the three weapons
the Thief and Ninja can use (Moonring Blade, Rising Sun, Twin Lance). I find
the Mime a better congregation Job for mages, but the Freelancer better for
physical attackers.

[MIME-LINK]

When you're done either getting the Mime shard or leaving it there for future
brawls with Famed Mimic Gogo, you're done here. Let's get out.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.46.1  The Great Sea Trench; the Fire tablet
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Unknown (#168), Unknown (#169), Unknown (#170), Unknown (#171),
  Unknown (#172), Triton (#293), Nereid (#294), Phobos (#295)

  Container contents:
  Water Scroll, Dragon Fang, Ether, Phoenix Down, Flame Ring,
  Kaiser Knuckles

  Miscellaneous items:
  Beast Killer (rare Unknown (spore2) steal)

  Time spells:
  Meteor

  Blue spells:
  Doom, Transfusion, Flame Thrower

"One rests beneath the ocean's floor, engulfed by flames..."

Do you remember when I talked about the white sparkle in the middle of the
ocean? The one you could see on the Submarine map? Go there! It's the Great Sea
Trench, the location of the Third tablet. I will not talk about Gargoyles, but
they are there. Before you enter this dungeon, make sure you can summon Odin
or have the Magic Lamp in your inventory. If you don't have Odin yet, take
a look at:

[ODIN-LINK]

All the enemies here are called Unknown. What, did you think I wouldn't know
the enemies here? I know everything.

  B2:
  35 % (blob) x 2
  35 % (blob), (worm) x 2
  23 % (worm) x 4
   6 % (spore2) x 3

  B4:
  35 % (worm) x 4
  35 % (blob) x 2, (worm)
  23 % (spore1), (worm), (blob)
   6 % (spore2) x 3

  B4 (back room):
  35 % (spore1), (worm), (blob)
  35 % (spore1) x 3
  30 % (spore2) x 3

  B5:
  35 % (blob), (worm), (skeleton) x 2
  35 % (spore1), (blob), (skeleton)
  23 % (spore1) x 3
   6 % (spore2) x 3

  B6:
  58 % (skeleton) x 3
  35 % (spore1), (blob), (skeleton)
   6 % (spore2) x 3

  B8:
  35 % (blob) x 2
  35 % (blob), (spore1) x 2
  23 % (spore1) x 3
   6 % (spore2) x 3

All enemies here start with Protect set; though you can remove it with the
Dispel spell or using the Judgment Staff as an item, your means of dealing
damage should be magical in nature anyway.

Unknown (blob) looks like a fat...thing sliming. It's the biggest one and weak
to water. As a reaction to every !Attack, it will remove a character from the
battlefield and kill itself with an attack called Possess, but your character
will be fine when the battle is over though missing out on ABP. It may use
Slimer.

Unknown (worm) is also sliming, but it also looks like a worm. They use
Digestive Acid and Slimer. Ukh.

Then there is Unknown (spore). There are two types. Those that come in trios
will revive each other if one or two are down. The initially surviving
member(s) will then attempt to use Delta Attack, but they normally lack the MP.
They should be taken out with MT attacks, which are vastly superior in this
dungeon anyway. You can steal a rare Beast Killer Whip from this variety. The
other version of Unknown (spore) is boring and will just attack physically and
use Spore to set the Poison status. Sometimes, because this game hates you,
three of these enemies will be of the boring variety. You can test out if you
can steal a Beast Killer by killing one and see what happens. I've called the
boring one (spore1) and the also boring but Whip-carrying one (spore2).

The most sturdy opponent here is Unknown (skeleton). They like to use the Doom
spell all the time, setting a timer which will kill at 0. Blue Mages can learn
this attack.

All the enemies here are weak on Magic Defense, have high Defense and inherent
Protect and are Undead. Boosted Syldra summoning and Requiem are very powerful
MT attacks to deal here. The Sage Staff and Apollo's Harp will deal a LOT of
damage to a single target, killing it instantly. Blades, Knives and Swords
probably shouldn't be used here unless they are the Holy Lance or Excalibur;
but even they will run into Protect. Mostly just stick to two characters
chanting Requiem and have the other two twiddle their thumbs with Jobs that
you want to grow. 

Welcome to B2! We can't stop here, for this is bat country. There are enemies
and a chest containing a Water Scroll. Square, this is FAKE treasure. We don't
want this! Continue.

B3 features a single Save Point, which is great, I guess.

B4 has skeleton buttons. A lot of them. You'll need to press the first, but not
the second in order to continue lave-free (or at all). The Geomancer's Light
Step and the Float status circumvents lava damage, if you forgot. In the back
room, there are a lot of skeleton buttons to choose from. The are all traps!
Except for the one in the top-right corner, that is the one that creates a
path. Go back to the slightly higher plateau and go up to witness the new path,
leading to a chest containing an awesome Flame Ring.

If you descend the stairs out of this room, you will meet lava. You could care
less about the lava, or you could return and press the second button you
passed. It will drop you a level down, but safely on the ground.

B5. There are pits of lava you could've fallen in from B4, and a staircase
leading down to B6. Don't forget to open the chest here, it contains a Dragon
Fang. AWESOME. Unknown (skeleton) starts to appear here.

B6 has more lava and more rocky pathways, but this time you can't avoid going
through the lava. There are chests as well for you to open: Ether and Phoenix
Down. It is all clear to us now. This is the dungeon of SUCK.

B7...leads to a door? With Dwarves? Dwarves!

Welcome to the great Dwarven Kingdom!

The Armor and Weapon shop here is the same guy. When called from the front or
back, he'll sell armor. From the sides, he'll sell weapons. The selection here
is quite excellent...but it's the selection from the Phantom Village. Had I not
been this much of a spoil-sport, this is the first time you would have seen
these items. Now, they are useless.

Rallybo is digging a tunnel. Likely out of pure frustration over being called
like a children's game from Mexico. He'll point you to the location of the
Phantom Village. So there it was!

When you're done with the people of small stature...little people...I mean, the
vertically challenged...Dwarves. When you're done with the Dwarves, you can
exit into a lake free of encounters. There is a small dent in the bottom wall
you see can be used to recharge the Magic Lamp! It'll flash regardless of the
Magic Lamp recharging or not, but never more than once without you leaving and
entering. Such trivia!

At what we can call B8 or something, the second chest you see contains Kaiser
Knuckles. But you can't get it. Nyah-nyah. There are buttons on this floor, a
lot of them. Most are fake. The one to the far right isn't, though, and opens
up a pathway to a chest containing the Knuckles.

You could have gotten them earlier, but the chance was almost non-existent.
Barehanded punches are normally based off your Level and Battle Power.
However, with Kaiser Knuckles the Battle Power is inherently boosted by 50,
making Barehanded punches nice enough again. In addition, they boost Strength
by 5 and give more Defense than other Accessories (except for the Genji Gloves
and Cursed Ring). They are for your Monk to use.

Pressing the other three buttons in this room disarms the trap behind the other
chest, so when you open it, the door just opens. The chest was empty, but we
can rise again to B7, where the Third tablet is already waiting for us.
However, Exdeath's guardians are ever-present, and the three little piggies are
all on our case.

These three creatures were recruited as one, one of the Eleven of the Rift.
Together with Wendigo and another, unknown demon, they were more than anxious
to escape the Interdimensional Rift after a thousand years. And now, here they
are...

Triton
Level: 37, HP: 13333, MP: 10000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 25
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 60%
Steal: Elixir (rare), Gold Needle (common)
Win: Power Drink (rare)
Absorbs: Fire
Weakness: Ice
Creature: Undead
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze,
  Confuse, Stop, Regen
Attacks: Attack, Blizzaga, Ice Storm, Frost, Delta Attack

Nereid
Level: 20, HP: 13333, MP: 10000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 25
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 60%
Steal: Elixir (rare), Gold Needle (common)
Win: Protect Drink (rare)
Absorbs: Ice
Weakness: Fire
Creature: Undead
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze,
  Confuse, Stop, Regen
Attacks: Attack, Firaga, Flame Thrower, Delta Attack

Phobos
Level: 39, HP: 13333, MP: 10000
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 25
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 60%
Steal: Elixir (rare), Gold Needle (common)
Win: Goliath Tonic (rare)
Absorbs: Poison
Weakness: Earth
Creature: Undead
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze,
  Confuse, Stop, Regen
Attacks: Attack, Bio, Rainbow Wind

What? They are babies that go Oink and are named after moons. Make up your
mind! What are these? They are demons from the Interdimensional Rift, they
don't have to make sense I guess. They have little swords and capes as well.
This is likely some sort of crazy Japanese reference to Hero Babies or the
like, I dunno.

This fight is the three Unknown (spore) fight on crack. All three targets are
Undead and NOT Heavy, so you can kill them any way you like. Raise spells,
Phoenix Downs, Curaga, all that jazz. However, if one of them falls, the others
will revive him with full HP and a Delta Attack will take place. This is not
good.

They are Undead, so Requiem works great. None of the targets absorb Syldra or
MT Thundaga spells, so go with those. You'll want to damage all targets equally
to avoid revival, so Titan's Gaia's Wrath is a no-go. Don't attack physically,
not even !Kick (as Nereid will take half damage).

Carbuncle can help you avoid a lot of attacks should it come to that. Firaga,
Bio and Blizzaga are Reflectable, as well as Delta Attack. Combine with Golem
and/or Mighty Guard for a lot of protection.

For a cheap victory, Odin's Zantetsuken or the Samurai's !Iainuki can instantly
end the fight by killing them all in a single shot. You can !Flirt with the
mutant babies (but you won't want to), you can cast Curaga (ST), Graviga, Death
Claw or Missile on them all then finish them off with Syldra, your choices are
endless.

When you're done, you get the ultimate !Time spell, this being Meteo. It is
basically a non-elemental attack, only it attacks four times. It is very
powerful on a single target, but wasteful on multiple ones. It deals random
damage as well, and every shot is affected gravely by Magic Defense so low-
powered blows may even get you 0 damage. I'm making it sound bad, it's not.
It's just random.

When you're done, learned Doom, got every treasure, there is no reason not to
Teleport out. I should not have to remind you that you can take three more
Sealed Weapons from the relevant castle. Now that you have Holy, the Sage's
Staff becomes an attractive option for White Mages and Chemists, Time Mages and
Red Mages with Holy spells.

It's time to find the last of the four tablets, the one hidden behind Istory
Falls. For this dungeon, it is highly have the Blue spell Mighty Guard. If
you don't have it yet, take a look at:

[STINGRAY-LINK]

Take the airshupmarine to river leading up to Istory Falls, both located
to the north-west. Now, land in the sea just south to it, and submerge your
vessel. Somewhere here (the map indicates this with a white dot) lies the
entrance to a cave on the Sea Floor where Ironbacks and Druids still roam.

  Sea Floor Cave:
  35 % Druid x 3
  35 % Druid, Ironback
  30 % Ironback x 3

You can Catch Ironbacks for a great one-time Release attack and steal Angel
Rings from the Druids, but you already knew that. This really is the best time
to get them, since Zombie will be thrown around in the future and you will
want to be able to protect yourself from it. Angel Rings can be purchased for
a whooping 50000 Gil in the Phantom Village, or you can invest the time by
Stealing and Resetting until you get at least three (you'll find one in a 
chest later in the game). When you reach the surface, you're in front of a 
piece of desert.

  Desert:
  35 % Desert Killer x2
  35 % Desert Killer, Sandboil x2
  23 % Sand Bear
   6 % Sand Bear, Desert Killer, Sandboil

Hey, old encounters! So that Javelin you can only obtain by stealing it from a
Sand Bear is not missable, that's possibly good news. When you're done playing
in this sand pit, walk over the other end of the desert to reach the entrance
of the strange coiling caves behind Istory Falls.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.47.1  Istory Falls; the Water tablet
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Mercury Bat (#178), Coral (#179), Aquagel (#180), Steel Fist (#181), Alchymia
  (#182), Red Dragon Toad (-), Hydra Toad (-), Ghidra Toad (-), Tonberry (#183),
  Leviathan (#296)

  Container contents:
  12000 Gil, Turtle Shell, Ether, Air Knife, Goliath Tonic, Rune Blade, Protect
  Ring, Phoenix Down, Reflect Ring, Enhancer

  Miscellaneous items:
  Man-Eater (rare Alchymia steal), Mirage Vest (rare Tonberry drop), Kaiser
  Knuckles (rare Steel Fist drop), Reflect Ring (guaranteed Leviathan drop)

  Summon spells:
  Leviathan

  Blue spells:
  Vampire, Aqua Breath

"One rests beyond the river's torrents, protected by water..."

Welcome to the cave behind the Waterfall! It is said that the road to
Shangri-La the land of milk and honey, could be found behind a waterfall. But
there's something even better in this cave. Stronger weapons! Take one toke of
Istory Falls' sweet fragrance...

One toke? You poor fool! Wait till you see those goddamn bats.

  Entree room, second room:
  35 % Mercury Bat x 3
  35 % Aquagel x 3
  23 % Alchymia, Red Dragon Toad
   6 % Tonberry

  B2:
  35 % Mercury Bat x 5
  35 % Aquagel x 2, Coral x 2
  23 % Alchymia, Hydra Toad
   6 % Tonberry

  B3:
  35 % Coral, Mercury Bat x 2
  35 % Steel Fist
  23 % Steel Fist x 3
   6 % Tonberry

  B4:
  35 % Coral x 4
  35 % Steel Fist, Mercury Bat x 3
  23 % Alchymia, Ghidra Toad
   6 % Tonberry

  B5:
  35 % Aquagel
  35 % Steel Fist x 3
  23 % Alchymia, Red Dragon Toad
   6 % Tonberry

As an erudite reader may have predicted, this is bat country. Mercury Bats have
very little HP (500) and use Vampire. Their !Claw Special Technique adds the
Old status, but these fights should be over quickly. Aquagel will attack
physically with quite some force and is weak to Lightning-elemental attacks. 
Coral is pretty much the same, though it may rarely use Spore to Poison a 
target. Now on to the interesting enemies!

Steel Fists are a drag. They counter every !Attack with !Air Fist, which sets
Old and HP Leak. They may randomly drop Kaiser Knuckles, which is a good thing
if you ever want four Monks or something. They are immune to NO status
ailments, but their Magical Evasion is fairly high. Sleep Spellblade and !Mix
potions such as Toad's Kiss (Maiden's Kiss + Dark Matter) can help you out.
Odin's Zantetsuken looks at level, never at Magic Evasion; he's a great way of
finishing any Steel Fist encounter you... encounter.

Alchymia will always be accompanied by a toad. If you let her be, she'll dispel
the Toad status of the monster, revealing it as either a souped up Red Dragon
(no elemental weaknesses, no rare Flame Ring steal) or an improved Hydra (may
use either a powerful Tidal Wave attack or Poison Breath). If you kill the
froggy before she can reveal its true nature, she'll start casting Death spells
on you. Take her out from the back row with spells such as Flare. She has a
rare Man-Eater for you to steal. A Man-Eater Jump attack will kill her in a
single hit! Note that the Dragon Toads do not affect the Bestiary.

The Man-Eater is a Knife only useable by the Dancer. In addition, it functions
more like a Lance; it is incompatible with Spellblade and deals double damage
with the !Jump attack. Man-Eaters will always deal a Critical Hit versus
Humanoid targets, being twice as powerful and ignoring Defense. A Dragoon with
equip Ribbon (which also allows the Man-Eater) or a Dancer with !Jump is great
fun. Official artwork depicts the Man-Eater with a nasty serrated blade. 

Those frogs, by the way, can be changed BACK into frogs easily; in addition,
you could lift the curse yourself if you want to.

The Tonberry makes its first Final Fantasy appearance in this game, in this
very cave. How cool! It's the rare encounter in all rooms; this demon's power
is enough to bring death with just one blow. Tonberries have 39393 HP, slowly
walk over to you and stab you in the face when they reach you. Seriously, they
use three !Knife attacks in a row, and it'll demolish you. !Knife is
unblockable, barrier-piercing and incredibly powerful. Tonberries are Humanoid
and not Heavy, so despite their dangerous nature they can be easily dispatched.
They are immune to Instant Death and Petrify, but Odin's Zantetsuken, !Iaiuki,
and !Flirt are ways to stopping the tiny fiend. If you lack the ability to
exploit its lack of Heavy nature, the Blink spell grants you immunity to its
murderous attacks. They may rarely drop a Mirage Vest.

This cave is filled with enemies weak to Lightning-elemental attacks, so those
who can summon Ramuh, cast Bolt 3 or toss Lightning Scrolls will have a field
day here. !Summon 4 is nice to have whenever Tonberry makes an appearance. 
Since Alchymia has an interesting rare steal and since Back Attacks can be
dangerous due to the powerful pouding of Aquagel enemies, a Thief is a great
addition to your team in this cave. 

The gargoyles. Goyle their gars good with Berserk and with not-Holy spells.

Upon entry, you'll find a cave overflowing with water. You can use the stairs
to ascend and the waterfalls to descend. There are three chests here,
containing a Turtle Shell, Ether and an Air Knife, all of which are mildly
useless but not entirely so. Find the door to continue. You'll get to go either
left or right. Go right.

B2 is where the good stuff's at. Walking down will get you to a chest
containing a Goliath Tonic, but you can't miss the 'hidden' pathway to a chest
with a Rune Blade. Rune Blade! You could've gotten one from a Stingray, but
this is less effort. Rune Blades are awesome. Put them on Mystic Knights and
Red/Blue Mages with !Dance and a Lamia's Tiara for great effects.

Leave the water and go left. Enter the water, leave the water. Go up to find a
chest you can't get since there's a waterfall blocking your way. In the Super
Famicom (Japanese SNES) game, you needed a Thief to get it. You'll be able to
run with the B button, though, so there's no need. Good gracious, it's a
Protect Ring! It's the fourth. To the bottom-left is the exit.

B3 houses a single pathway, two chests (Phoenix Down, Reflect Ring) and a
single exit. It leads to a Save Point!

B4 is dark as the ocean's floor. You'll want a Geomancer (or a character with
the Find Pits ability) here, since there are a few snares here and there that
will drop you to B5. It's annoying when you still have business here. In the
room you access in the middle of B4, a chest contains an Artemis Bow.

The Artemis Bow is an accurate Bow without Critical Hit features or stat
boosts. Altogether inferior to Yoichi's Bow, it does always inflicts a Critical
Hit on Magic Beasts, making it a solid alternative when facing them. There are
no Magic Beasts here, though.

In the larger room of B4, the bottom-left chest contains 12000 Gil and the
upper-left one has an Enhancer, the most powerful Sword (not Knightsword) when
speaking Attack Power.

The Enhancer is the Sword for those Jobs that want to equip a Sword but not
really attack with it. If you favor support or magical mayhem over physical
damage, the Enhancer is better than the Rune Blade. Blue Mages will like it
better, likely. In addition, if you want to use the Mystic Knight for
Spellblade, the Enhancer's were it's at.

Go down to B5 now. There are three chests here. Always press the buttons next
to the chests first, else you might get spiked on the surrounding traps. There
is a Fuma Shuriken, a Titan's Axe and an Aegis Shield. The Titan's Axe is the
most powerful Axe ever. It's far more powerful than a Gaia Hammer. However, it
does not ignore row, so when your Berserker picks a target in the back, it'll
deal halve damage. The second Aegis Shield is AWESOME.

In the middle of this room is a cave which grants you access to an Artemis Bow,
which is more powerful than Yoichi's Bow and deals critical damage to Magic
Beasts, but will otherwise never inflict a critical hit nor give any stat
boosts. You decide.

The bottom-left chest containing the Titan's Axe had two spikes surrounding it.
Push the button and they'll disappear. You'll have to jump down in one of those
holes... to find the Fourth tablet! When you walk away though, a demon sent out
by Exdeath halts you. Before swords are drawn, though, one of the Eleven of the
Rift turns to face the Sea King, Leviathan.

So, now there's Leviathan.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.47.2  Istory Falls; the battle with Leviathan
**********************************

Leviathan
Level: 37, HP: 40000, MP: 2000
Defense: 25, Magic Defense: 15
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 70%
Steal: Nothing (rare), Elixir (common)
Win: Reflect Ring (always)
Absorbs: Water
Nullifies: Earth, Fire
Weakness: Lightning
Creature: Heavy, Dragon
Special Technique: !Tail
Special Technique Effect: Adds Sap
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Tail (sets Sap), Entangle, Aqua Breath, Tidal Wave

Leviathan, the Sea King, a promise made to you by the Sealed Tome. You can skip
him here no worries; exiting the dungeon and returning will have you find him
waiting for you for all eternity. He's an adamant fellow! Leviathan's attacks
are simple and brutal. Tidal Wave will deal around 800 to all targets, and he
can use it twice in some turns. 1600 damage to a character will likely
kill it, so you're either sporting Coral Rings, have a Goliath Tonic applied
or, most likely, have Shell active. Entangle still sets Paralyze. Aqua Breath
is non-elemental and will punch through Coral Rings, but will only deal
between 200 and 300 damage to non-Shelled targets.

It's essential to be able to withstand a dual Tidal Wave attack. Mighty
Guard is the best defensive option, but applying Shell through other means
is fine and dandy. Sufficiently capable !White casters can cast Shell, and
you can use !Mix to create a Dragon Defense potion (Phoenix Down + Dragon
Fang). Any character with a Coral Ring will just absorb Tidal Wave, so no
Shell is needed. Those characters with Shell active will need to keep their
HP above 750 to be able to withstand Leviathan's most powerful onslaught;
Golem, Protect and Image are additional protective measures you can apply.
One last great defensive mechanism is the Goliath Tonic. Chemists can be turned
into damage dealing machines with Equip Harp + Apollo's Harp, !White level 6
paired with a Sage's Staff or !Black 5 to cast Thundaga. 

Also consider Leviathan's counter-attacks. Every Magic spell may provoke
a Tidal Wave attack 33% of the time. Every other attack, damaging or not,
may provoke a 33% Entangle attack. If you're not careful with your spells,
you could see more Tidal Waves than even your Shelled characters can
handle.

Since Leviathan is a Dragon, Apollo's Harp really hurts the thing. A Berserker
with Two-Handed and a Titan's Axe is very powerful as well, as is casting
Thundaga off four Reflective targets (or just on Leviathan). You have a lot
of offensive and defensive options. Thundaga Spellblade is something to
consider as well.

For your optional troubles, you get a guaranteed Reflect Ring and a powerful
Water-elemental Summon spell, Leviathan.

Leviathan, as an attack, is very powerful, obviously a fair bit more powerful
than Syldra. However, there is the thing of its Water element. There is NO
piece of equipment in the game that boosts Water-elemental attacks.
Non-boosted, it comes out weaker than boosted Syldra. If you, however, use the
Mix Elemental Power (Eye Drops + Holy Water), Leviathan will be the most
powerful summon attack in the game.

When you're done, you can Teleport out (or take the waterfall in this very
room). Grab the last three of the Legendary Weapons, walk out and go watch the
cutscene.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.48.1  The Secret Shards
**********************************

  Features:
  Oracle (job), Cannoneer (job), Gladiator (job)

Since we are in GBA land, we'll also get to go to the Bonus Dungeon!

"I heard there was an earthquake down south! We can only hope that no one was
hurt... No one knows the cause of the earthquake... I wonder if some
underground volcano erupted. If only we had a submarine, we could go take a
look, but..."

All the way down south, in the seas near the forest of the Phantom Village, you
see some bubbly action going on. It's a new Great Rift in the sea! If you take
the submarine above it, you'll get sucked in. All you have to do is take the
three new crystal shards of unknown origin, watch the cutscene, and get out.

The Oracle gives you generally useless abilities and can only equip Staves and
Robes. Combine with !White for best effects. The Oracle has the highest Magic
Power bonus in the game, so master this Job for great results. Never mess with
!Predict; only the Japanese could make use out of it. If you do want to mess
around with !Predict, be my guest. Damage done is independent of level and
Magic Power, but it is boosted by elemental boosting weapons. Since it features
a large array of elements, it is best used by those wielding the Rune Chime
(and to a lesser extent, the Magus Rod).

The Cannoneer is a Job that teaches you how to use !Open Fire and !Combine two
presumably gunpowder-related techniques. Both commands operate on level alone,
and on neither Strength nor Magic Power. The elemental results of !Open Fire
are affected by elemental boosts, though, meaning that !Combine works best with
those with access to Rods or the Rune Chime.

The Gladiator has the best stats of any Heavy Armor Job, combining the highest
Strength (tie with Monk) with Agility as good as the Ninja's. It lacks Stamina,
though and therefor HP, though. !Finisher has a solid chance of inflicting 9999
elemental damage every shot, and this chance increases while you level in
Gladiator. Even if you fail, you often inflict a Critical Hit with the weapon
you're carrying. The Gladiator can equip Knightswords, Swords, Axes (but not
Hammers?), Knives, Bows and Shields, so I'm sure you'll find something you'll
like.

[ORACLE-LINK] [CANNONEER-LINK] [GLADIATOR-LINK]

It really is too bad that the Cannoneer's !Combine takes 500 ABP to learn, as
it really is a sweet ability; the Gladiator's !Finisher takes only 100 ABP, but
since it gets better with Gladiator level even that ability cannot be learned
properly with a Gladiator 'dip'. All three of these Jobs, to make their time
worthwhile, require a serious effort.

Before you go on to the next chapter of this walkthrough and the game, seek out
the merchant! You can find him in Karnak, Crescent and Bal Castle; in all
cities, he'll stay at the Inn. Buy all the Blitzshot you can carry; you don't
really need the other two.

On a peculiar note; if you travel a bit to the east under water from the
new Great Rift, you'll encounter the mysterious monolithic Mo'ai. It's
somewhat of a recurring Easter Egg in the Final Fantasy series; it appeared
earlier in FFIV. On the MOON.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.49.1  Taking the Black Chocobo; the battle with Bahamut
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Rock Slug (#21), Gaelicat (#22), Cockatrice (#23), Headstone (#24), Ankheg
  (#184), Ammonite (#185), Landcrawler (#186), Bahamut (#298)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Defender (rare Landcrawler steal), Dragon Fang (rare Bahamut steal,
  guaranteed Bahamut drop)

  Summon spells:
  Bahamut

  Blue spells:
  Flash, Aqua Breath

I've been to the desert on a bird with no name...

Check your map and see where you parked your Black Chocobo. Take it to the
great desert to the north-east. Ignore the tower to the south-west and head up
until you find North Mountain.

In the desert, you may find a few new enemies! Ankhegs are reminiscent of the
Undergrounder of the Gil Cave; centipedes that use Quake attacks. They do not
absorb Earth-elemental attacks like their lesser brethren, and are weak to Ice.
Ammonites are mere cannon fodder. Of special note is how neither the Ankhegs
nor the Ammonites register as Desert dwellers; Aqua Breath will not go medieval
on their asses. Level 3 Flare hits these critters nicely, though.

Landcrawlers only appear to the south of the desert. They have 22000 HP and may
use Maelstrom; an MT attack that reduces the target's HP down to a single
digit. They have a Special Technique called !Crush, which sets Confuse; watch
out for that. They are vulnerable to Death and not Heavy, so Odin, the Death
spell and other things of that nature help out. Landcrawlers are immune to
Petrify, unlike the Sandcrawlers you could've seen earlier. They have a common
Ancient Sword and a rare Defender for the Stealing, if you're still interested
at this point.

Ascending the Mountain should be easy. The enemies haven't upgraded since the
last time you came here, so something like !Kick should kill everything. The
purple flowers are still poisonous, but now you can use Float or Light Step to
trample all over them. Bahamut will use an Earth-based attack, so if you for
some reason lack the Float spell, you can Control or Confuse a Gaelicat to have
it cast Float for you. Use the Save Point. At the summit, where you once found
Hiryu, the Wind Drake, you now face a prize you were promised back when you had
but a single tablet: Bahamut, god-king of dragons.

Bahamut
Level: 99, HP: 40000, MP: 10000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 5%, Magic Evasion: 33%
Steal: Dragon Fang (common and rare)
Win: Dragon Fang (rare)
Nullifies: Earth
Status: Float (always)
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Silence, Slow, Stop
Can't Evade: Aerial, Song
Attacks: Attack, Aqua Breath, Mega Flare, Poison Breath, Zombie Breath,
  Maelstrom, Ice Storm, Lightning, Blaze, Earth Shaker, Atomic Rays, Frost

Bahamut has a large array of elemental MT assaults, some of which are more
painful than others. Blaze and Lightning basically do the same thing (max HP/4
damage), and the other attacks are just magical attacks you should protect
yourselves from with Mighty Guard (or, lacking that, Shell). Of special notice
are Maelstrom and Mega Flare. He will use his powerful attacks depending on his
current amount of HP:

< 40000: Mega Flare
< 35000: Atomic Rays, Frost
< 30000: Blaze, Earth Shaker
< 25000: Aqua Breath, Lightning
< 20000: Maelstrom, Ice Storm
< 15000: Poison Breath, Zombie Breath
< 10000: Mega Flare

Maelstrom is just a pain in the neck. Shell status and Aegis Shields will make
it miss often, but it's a dangerous move when it connects as it'll drop your
character's HP to a single digit. Mega Flare will deal over 2000 damage to all
targets. You must either make sure he never gets to use it, or make it bounce
off from the Reflect status. Bahamut will start using Mega Flare when he has
10000 HP or less, so that's doable. When reflected from four targets, he'll
deal 9999 damage to himself, ending the battle right there.

Defensively, calling on Carbuncle or Reflect Rings is not a bad idea; Mega
Flare and Atomic Ray are helped out by it, and you can cast Firaga and the like
on yourselves for increased damage output. Ice Shields help against Ice Storm,
Frost, Atomic Ray and Blaze; they're grand. Bahamut, when undamaged, will only
use physical attacks, Atomic Ray and Frost. When suitable protected from these
attacks by a combination of Golem and Ice Shields/Flame Shields/Dragon Shield
(the Mix potion), you can start buffing if you like since you're immortal.
Shell is good (Mighty Guard is quicker), Dragon Kiss helps against Maelstrom.

Bahamut is NOT a Dragon, sadly, so Apollo's Harp, Dragon's Whisker and Dragon
Cannon (!Combine) are out. Useful tactics include Hastega, Mighty Guard, Golem
and Carbuncle (that order, where applicable), then have a Hasted character
continuously use Romeo's Balad to keep Bahamut's heart at ease while you
slaughter him. Big damage dealers include Two-Handed or Berserk Brave
Blade/Titan's Axe/Rune Blade wielders, !Gaia's Cave-In (which won't appear all
the time), Sword Dance with a powerful weapon (wear a Lamia's Tiara), you name
it. If you deem it unfair that Bahamut is not a Dragon, you can make it so
(number one) with the Dragon Kiss (Dragon Fang + Maiden's Kiss) and exploit his
faux Dragon nature.

Bahamut is the strongest summon spell in the game! It's barrier-piercing and
non-elemental, and thus not capable of being boosted. It's about as powerful as
boosted Syldra, but not as powerful as boosted Leviathan. Boosted Leviathan is
a hassle though, what with the in-battle preparation and all.

As you can see, we now have all spells except for two. We're missing a single
Blue spell (if you kept up) and a single Summon spell. Let's get them!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.49.2  Taking the Black Chocobo; the Phoenix Tower
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Ankheg (#184), Ammonite (#185), Landcrawler (#186), Lemure (#187),
  Partenhope (#188), Cherie (#189), Kuza Beast (x) (-), Soul Cannon (x) (-),
  Liquid Flame (x) (-), Bandercoeurl (x) (-), Magic Pot (#190)

  Container contents:
  5000 Gil, 10000 Gil, 15000 Gil, 20000 Gil, 25000 Gil, Phoenix Down x 4, Aevis
  Killer

  Miscellaneous items:
  Defender (rare Landcrawler steal), Reflect Ring (common Lemure steal, rare
  Parthenope drop), Ribbon (rare Lemure steal), Rainbow Dress (common Parthenope
  steal), Coral Ring (rare Parthenope steal), Hermes Sandals (rare Cherie drop),
  Red Slippers (common Cherie steal), Elven Cape (rare Cherie steal), Protect
  Ring (rare Soul Cannon (x) steal)

  Summon spells:
  Phoenix

  Blue spells:
  1000 Needles, Pond's Chorus, Roulette, Flash, Aeroga, Lilliputian Lyric,
  Time Slip, ???

The Phoenix Tower is the place where dragons come to die. It is a 30-story
building where succubi of multiple origins hound your steps and even the walls
are bent on your destruction. Sounds like fun?

Here's the deal. Most floors will have no visible route upstairs, so you'll
have to walk around the main pillar and search the wall there. You'll basically
go round and round. The exit will always be both left and right of the middle
tile, but one of the stairs is guarded while the other is not. There is a fixed
pattern here; I'll give it to you. The guardian is random, but note that the
four monsters are NOT the same monster you encountered earlier. They are
improved ones. Note that these creatures do not affect your Bestiary; if you
missed Bandercoeurl earlier, you can't pick it up here.

Examining the wall is great with characters with !Black, !Spellblade or
!Combine, as the three main elements can be put to great use here.

The Bandercoeurl is weak to Fire-elemental attacks and may randomly use a
Blaster attack, which either sets Paralyze or Death. It is also a Magic Beast,
so Artemis Bow/Beast Killer wielders, rejoice!

Liquid Flame is weak to Water- and Ice-elemental attacks, and may use either
Fira, !Ray and Blaze. !Ray will set Paralyze. It will heal itself with Firaga
every second out of four turns, but you shouldn't let it come to that.

The new and improved Soul Cannon is most noteworthy because of its rare Protect
Ring steal. If you missed the one on Odin, you'll only have three. Not that
Protect rings are the most awesome of Accessories, but they are the most
defensive overall. Soul Cannon is weak to Lightning-elemental attacks and may
use either Missile (75 % current HP damage), Wave Cannon (50 % maximum HP
damage to all) and Gamma Rays (sets Stop).

The Kuza Beast has no elemental weaknesses, but is a Magic Beast (also, Heavy)
so you could take advantage of that. Kill the Kuza Beast quickly, as it can use
the ??? Blue spell that can be very powerful considering Kuza Beast's 10000 HP.
A Berserk spell helps; those physical may still pack a punch, but they're
nowhere near as dangerous as ??? spells.

   iOS/Android: These wall encounters' sprite is halved because the game 
   decides to halve all monster sprites. This is fun where you bring your own
   monsters in with !Release and later !Oath since their spirtes are halved 
   as well. 

  1st - 4th Floor:
  94 % Lemure, Parenthope
   6 % Parenthope, Cherie

The random encounters are all female demons with great items and no status
immunities that you can't run from. Dancers or those with Ribbons equipped will
have a great advantage as they nullify their many status-related attacks. 
Angel Rings also help out, since the most dangerous attack used in this 
building is Danse Macabre, which sets Zombie. Two-Handed or Berserk weapons 
will often kill a target, and the Man-Eater will also prove to be very powerful
(use either !Jump or equip Ribbons on a physically resilient Job). Romeo's 
Ballad and especially Alluring Air are very awesome. The ladies will often use
status ailment attack on themselves, giving you all the time in the world to 
strike with Syldra and the like. A Dancer with an Air Knife and abundant Syldra
conjuring will be a great addition to your team. None of the ladies are Heavy, 
so Odin performs miracles here.

Lemure is a Humanoid that attacks physically and uses Spore to Poison. When
targeted by !Attack, it may respond with either Hug (restores HP to full, sets
Petrify) or Pond's Chorus. Carries both Wall Rings and the awesome Ribbon! At a
later point in the game, we will be advised to not let its beauty blind us to
its sins. Lemures IRL are palm-sized monkeys with the big eyes for the night-
seeing; they ain't beautiful, but I'd pay good money to see it commit sins.
Note that those Reflect Rings sell for 10.000 Gil a piece. That's easy money!

Parthenope is a Humanoid that attacks physically and randomly uses Roulette to
kill a target on the battlefield. Roulette does that. You can learn the attack
with Learning and/or Blue Mages, but since its effects are the same when cast
by both the enemy and you - and you're probably not too happy when you see the
spell cast - you should never ever use it. Parthenope carries the Rainbow Dress
and a rare Coral Ring, which is ironic since the original Parthenope from Greek
mythology drowned like it was going out of style.

Cherie is the most dangerous opponent. Normally it'll just use Dancehall Daze
to set Sleep and random physical attacks, but when struck by !Attack it may use
Danse Macabre to turn you into a Zombie. Thriller! Thrillah nights.... Common
Red Shoes for stealing, and a rare Elven Cape we'd have killed for earlier in
the game. Cross your fingers for a Hermes Sandals drop; even if you don't want
to use it, it sells for 25000 Gil. 

               Lemure         Parthenope      Cherie
Common Steal:  Reflect Ring   Rainbow Dress   Red Shoes
Rare Steal:    Ribbon         Coral Ring      Elven Cape
Rare Drop:     Lamia's Harp   Reflect Ring    Hermes Sandals

The Rainbow Dress is a Dancer-only piece of equipment that's great on Defense,
protects against Confuse and boosts the Sword Dance rate of !Dance and the
success of !Flirt, much like the Lamia's Tiara. Dancers should use it over the
Black Garb, but if you have a Mirage Vest to spare it's a toss-up. The Red
Shoes also boosts !Dance/!Flirt in the same way and have more Defense than the
Protect Ring. No Regen and no Magic Defense to speak of, though. Protect Ring
still wins unless you want to employ !Dance and want to keep your Ribbon and
Mirage Vest. Since the Rainbow Dress is exactly that, a brightly coloured dress,
you wonder how Bartz looks in it. Probably a bit like Freddie Mercury. 

Ascend the stairs! First, I'll give you the total lay-out of the entire tower,
for those people who are just interested in avoiding the monsters and know
about the rest already:

1st Floor:  Left stairway is safe
3rd Floor:  Left stairway is safe
4th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

7th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
8th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
9th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

12th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
13th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
14th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

17th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
18th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
19th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

22nd Floor:  Right stairway is safe
23th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
24th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

26th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
27th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
28th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

For the rest of you good sirs and madams:

1st Floor:  Left stairway is safe
3rd Floor:  Left stairway is safe
4th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

Every fifth floor will hold two urns, or vases, or what you want to call it.
One will contain treasure, the other will house a Magic Pot encounter! It'll
guard a treasure, but the real gem is the fight itself...

Magic Pot is designed to be fairly unbeatable. It has 65255 HP, maximum Defense
and Magic Defense, 95 % Evasion, 99 % Magic Evasion, is Heavy and immune to all
status ailments. Inherent Protect and Shell, immunity to !Control and !Catch.
The Mute status is set across the fight, so spellcasting is out. All it will
ever do is demand Elixirs and completely restore its HP with a nameless move
that graphically resembles an Elixir.

Every Elixir you feed them will have them run away 33 % of the time, setting
you up with 100 ABP. Some will claim that you're best off using !Mime to
duplicate Elixirs, but why would squander the awesome 100 ABP on the Mime,
which teaches you nothing except public ridicule? If you feel you want to be
holding on to your Elixirs for the most, use the Wonder Wand as an item to cast
Return regardless of the Mute status.

I suggest you take the opportunity to give ABP on Jobs that are not nearly as
good as the abilities they gave you. Red Mages, Rangers and Dancer come to
mind. One thing I like to do is use the total of 500 ABP you'll obtain through
Magic Pots in this dungeon to master the Berserker Job for those focusing on
spells. By mastering the Berserker Job, you'll have unlocked a very respectable
Strenght and Stamina score for those characters when you switch them to the
Freelancer Job, and you won't have had to dabble in physical Jobs except for a 
grand total of five fights. You can do as you like, however.

If you wish to one day actually destroy a Magic Pot, I advise you to leave one
alone for now; if you are a better man or woman than you are now, you could
take one of with a few very specific set-ups. If you're curious how that could
be accomplished, or to see if you could already pull it off, take a gander at

[POT-LINK]

5th - 8th Floor:
94 % Parenthope, Cherie
 6 % Cherie, Lemure

On the fifth floor, the left urn contains 5000 Gil, the right urn is a Magic
Urn protecting a Phoenix Down underneath. The sixth floor has an open
staircase.

9th - 12th Floor:
94 % Cherie, Lemure
 6 % Parenthope, Cherie

7th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
8th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
9th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

On the tenth floor, the left urn contains 10000 Gil, the right urn is a Magic
Urn protecting another Phoenix Down. The eleventh floor has an open staircase.

13th - 16th Floor:
94 % Lemure x 3
 6 % Lemure, Parenthope

12th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
13th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
14th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

These Lemure x3 formations are truly great places to bring a Thief. Assuming
you take three Reflect Rings from them a fight, that's 30.000 Gil. You'll have
all the elemental rings you want in no time at all. On the fifteenth floor, 
the right urn contains 15000 Gil while the left urn is a Magic Pot. It's 
sitting on... a Phoenix Down! The sixteenth floor has an open staircase.

17th - 20th Floor:
94 % Parthenope x 3
 6 % Cherie, Lemure

17th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
18th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
19th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

On the twentieth floor, the left urn contains 20000 Gil while the right urn is,
in fact, a Magic Pot! It protects a Phoenix Down. The twenty-first floor has an
open staircase.

21th - 24th Floor:
94 % Cherie x 3
 6 % Parenthope, Cherie

22nd Floor:  Right stairway is safe
23th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
24th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

With almost every encounter features three Cherie enemies, who have a 1/8
chance each to drop Hermes Sandals that cost you 50.000 Gil a pair, you
might want to fight a few battles here.

This 25th floor houses the final Magic Pot of the game! The right urn houses
25000 Gil, while the left urn is a Magic Pot protecting an Aevis Killer. How
original! If you ever want to kill a Magic Pot, skip the one you can find here.
In a shocking twist of events, the floor above an urn floor does not have a
visible stairway!

25th - 29th Floor:
94 % Lemure, Partenhope, Cherie
 6 % Lemure, Parthenope

26th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
27th Floor:  Left stairway is safe
28th Floor:  Right stairway is safe

On the twenty-ninth floor, the hidden staircase is right in the middle. On the
top of the Phoenix Tower, a touching (and interactive) cutscene awaits you. The
choices you make for Lenna's past are irrelevant for the eventual outcome, so
I'll just let you go on with it.

Phoenix is a powerful MT Fire-elemental attack, but you may not want to use it
just for that; at 99 MP, it's very costly. The target you select is the target
of an resurrection spell that restores both HP and MP back to full; the flames
of rebirth that purge the battlefield are just a bonus. With Transfusion,
you can keep restoring eachothers MP pool forever, so that may be a good way
to fix the 99 MP issue. 

You will find your party completely restored. You can use Teleport to travel 
back down the Phoenix Tower in an instant.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.50.1  Wrapping Things Up; How to Kill Fiends and Mutilate People
**********************************

Remember, there is no such thing as 'needed'. To my knowledge, single Job
challenges have all made it to the end (all Berserkers, a single White Mage,
there is no limit to the amount of self-depravation mankind is capable of), so
you really don't need anything. However, the following things are awesome to
have or, if not, to shoot for from now on:

The Ninja's Dual-Wield is great for those characters that focus on weapons.
Remember that Knights and Gladiators can use the Defender as a second weapon to
score some physical evasion, and the Ninja can use Sasuke's Katana for that
purpose. The Main Gauche is too weak to consider now. !Rapid Fire is your
best option versus single targets.

You should have all spells. This is not that big a deal except for Blue for
which a full list really isn't necessary to have a full list of (Doom and 
Roulette are quite useless). The Mighty Guard spell will come in real handy in
the upcoming ordeal. Make sure to pack at least Arise and Hastega.

Bestiary (79%):
Normal enemies: #87, #123 - #190
Aquatic enemies: #191 - #203
Boss enemies: #283 - #298

You could've chosen to neglect obtaining the Mime Job and avoid facing Famed
Mimic Gogo just now; if so, you will have an explainable hole at #297.

Just for funsies, version 3, here's an example of one of my teams at the
moment:

Bartz:

LV 6 Knight ***
LV 4 Monk
LV 1 Dragoon
LV 5 Ninja ***
LV 4 Samurai
LV 1 Berserker
LV 2 Ranger
LV 6 Mystic Knight ***
LV 3 Blue Mage
LV 3 Cannoneer ***

Bartz can punch, slice and stab with whatever weapon he sees fit. Due to the
attention going to obtaining !Combine, !Rapid Fire isn't here yet. Bartz can,
however, set Dual Wield to any Job he chooses, and use !Spellblade 6 when he so
chooses. If he needs an MT attack, needs to set a status or exploit a Creature
Type, !Combine is there. !Blue is also present for when I want to.

Lenna:

LV 1 Ranger
LV 6 White Mage
LV 6 Black Mage
LV 6 Time Mage
LV 5 Summoner
LV 3 Blue Mage
LV 3 Red Mage
LV 2 Geomancer
LV 2 Chemist
LV 3 Bard ***
LV 2 Dancer

Lenna has mastered !White, !Black, !Time, !Summon and !Blue and can mix and
match spelllists however I see fit. She lacks !Dualcast at this moment, but is
almost there.

Krile:

LV 3 Thief
LV 1 Ranger
LV 6 White Mage
LV 6 Black Mage
LV 6 Time Mage
LV 5 Summoner
LV 3 Blue Mage
LV 4 Red Mage ***
LV 2 Chemist
LV 1 Geomancer
LV 3 Bard ***
LV 2 Oracle

Due to Krile being around in the Pyramid, she has somewhat of an ABP edge over
Lenna. She's the same, only she has mastered !Dualcast and is, therefor, more
or less done as far as spellcasting goes. Thief and Oracle levels mark the
start of her ability score optimization.

Faris:

LV 7 Monk ***
LV 6 Thief
LV 5 Ninja ***
LV 1 Berserker
LV 4 Ranger ***
LV 3 Beastmaster
LV 1 Summoner
LV 3 Blue Mage

Berserk was learned; it's a great booster for Monk and Ranger. Faris has
learned to Dual Wield and use !Rapid Fire, but lacks !Spellblade as far as that
ancient time-honored broken combo goes. The funky Summoner level is there for
boosting the Berserker's Gaia Hammer and Rune Axe :p The Thief is about ready
to be mastered; with Monk present, all that's left is mastering Oracle for best
stats across the board.

If you take the airshupmarine to Mr. Clio the psychic friend who lives in a
pineapple under the sea south of Karnak, he *should* tell you that you obtained
68% of all treasures if you followed this walkthrough faithfully. If you chose
to let a single Magic Pot live to pound its whacky face in in the future, that
number will be 67%, so don't be alarmed.

Anyway, what you might possibly need before entering the Rift and putting a
stop to Exdeath's destructive plans once and for all are items. Ninja Scrolls
can be bought in the Phantom Village, you can get ammo for !Combine in either
Karnak, Crescent or Bal Castle and all other items should be lying all over the
place.

When you're ready, you know where to go. The Void, bane of all that is, opened
up over Castle Tycoon. The Void ripped itself free from the constraints of the
Interdimensional Rift, a place created when the world was divided to conquer
the Void. Here, in this alien place, Exdeath has retreated, working
relentlessly to command the Void even further. Within the Interdimensional
Rift, an unknown number of demons and other evil creatures have been locked
away, all promised freedom by Exdeath.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.51.1  Interdimensional Rift; the Desert
**********************************


       ...



                                      ...







                        ...




  Opponents:
  Dhorme Chimera (#58), Ankheg (#184), Ammonite (#185), Landcrawler (#186)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Defender (rare Landcrawler steal)

When the thousands of evil creatures were sealed away 1000 years ago, those
that governed this monumental process did not exactly cut with a surgeon's
precision. Large parts of the lands were sealed away as well; among them a
large desert.

"The desert was the apotheosis of all deserts, huge, standing to the sky for
what looked like eternity in all directions"
 - King Stephen of the Dark Tower

  35 % Ammonite x5
  35 % Ankheg x3
  23 % Landcrawler
   6 % Dhorme Chimera

The Ammonites, Ankhegs and Landcrawlers are creatures you already encountered
around the Phoenix Tower; the Dhorme Chimera is a creature you faced when
traveling between Karnak and the Ancient Library, and again around the Ruined
City of Gohn. These should be news to you; Level 3 Flare hits all but the
Chimera, and Odin can strike them all as well. The Landcrawler is sturdy, but
not Heavy.

The path of this first part of the Interdimensional Rift is very linear. Sand-
streams indicate we are truly no longer on our own planet; the Desert of the
Shifting Sands has fallen silent, but these streams are apparently not tied to
the Crystals of either world. A single wall and an eventual door tell us that
whatever this location once was, it was inhabited by the Ancients.

When you reach the door, Exdeath bids you a warm welcome... you've defeated
Melusine, the Wendigo, Triton, Nereid and Phobos already, and watched another
sealed demon be defeated by Leviathan. Seven of the Eleven of the Rift are
left, each more malicious than the next: the monstrous mage Azulmagia, the
beholder Catastrophe, the wicked fey Calofisteri, the tome demon Apanda, the
terrible creature Twintania, the king of the dark castle Halicarnassus and
finally the immortal, Necrophobe. They will do everything in their not
inconsiderable power to destroy you, so tread carefully...

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.51.2  Interdimensional Rift; the Ruins
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Ronkan Knight (#63), Stone Mask (#64), Enchanted Fan (#65), Lamia (#66),
  Archeotoad (#67), Ghidra (#69), Grenade (#204), Baldanders (#205), Death
  Dealer (#206), Level Checker (#207)

  Container contents:
  Blood Sword, Cottage, Dark Matter, Elixir x2, Ether

  Miscellaneous items:
  Rune Chime (rare Baldanders drop), Angel Ring (rare Baldanders steal), Flame
  Shield (rare Grenade steal), Elixir (rare Level Checker drop)

  Blue spells:
  Self-Destruct, Roulette, Aeroga, Level 5 Death, Level 4 Graviga, Level 3
  Flare, Level 2 Old

"My name is Enuo, king of kings: look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay of that colossal wreck, boundless and
bare. The lone and level ruins stretch far away."
 - a Russian poem

Few facts are mentioned about the Ancient Ronka civilization, though we know
that 1000 years ago they were the ones to conquer Enuo with the twelve now-
legendary weapons and that a branch still existed until a short time ago, when
the Ronka city was forcibly lift up in the air to hasten the shattering of the
Earth Crystal. And now, we encounter a part of their culture in the Inter-
dimensional Rift; what does this portend?

  Chain drop-off, first room:
  59 % Grenade x2, Death Dealer
  35 % Baldanders, Level Checker
   6 % Ghidra

  Three chains room
  35 % Level Checker x4
  35 % Baldanders x2, Grenade
  23 % Baldanders, Level Checker
   6 % Enchanted Fan, Ronkan Knight x2

  Third room
  35 % Level Checker x2, Grenade
  35 % Death Dealer x2, Level Checker, Baldanders
  23 % Level Checker x4
   6 % Archeotoad x3

  Exit chain room... three whole tiles!
  35 % Baldanders
  35 % Death Dealer x4
  23 % Baldanders x2, Grenade
   6 % Lamia, Stone Mask x2

As you can see, every rare formation is a blast from the past; formations from
the flying Ruins of Ronka, in this case. This is something you'll see more
often in the other area's of the Interdimensional Rift as well. I will not
discuss these simple monsters.

The Grenades will simply attack physically, but beware of casting spells; any
Blue, White, Black, Time or Summon spell will be countered by Self-Destruct.
They are vulnerable to all status ailments except for the sprite- altering
ones, so use it to your advantage. You can nab a rare Flame Shield if you can
Steal.

There are Enchanted Fan upgrades here, and they're called Baldanders. They may
randomly use Aeroga every turn, so beware; halt their assault with any status
ailment you can think of as they won't be immune. They're great with the items;
common Turtle Shell steal, rare Angel Ring, rare Rune Chime drop!

The Rune Chime is the best weapon for Freelancer mages, as it boosts both the
elements of the Magus Rod (Fire, Ice, Lightning, Poison, Earth, Wind) but also
Holy. This makes it the best option for anybody combining !Black and !White, or
using !Combine or !Predict. In addition, its damage formula functions like an
Axe; it works when Mute is in effect (as opposed to the Diamond Bell) and deals
half damage from the Back Row. When a Freelance mage has the Strength of a
Monk, the Rune Chime will even be a formidable physical attack! Note that Mimes
cannot equip the thing, so that's too bad for them.

Death Dealer is a Heavy Humanoid, halting clever Odin usage right there :(
They'll use Roulette all the freaking time, which blows. Silence, Toad and
Berserk stop this nonsense.

Level Checker is a creature you could've encountered earlier, in the sunken
tower of Walse. It checks your level, then disregards that information and
drives into walls. Seriously, it does not modify its level-based attacks at
all, it's just curious or something. It will then cast either Level 5 Death,
Level 4 Graviga, Level 3 Flare or Level 2 Old on the target it used Search on.
Search can be Reflected! When Level Checkers are tricked into casting the
spells on each other, only Level 2 Old and Level 3 Flare will do something. It
may rarely drop an Elixir. At 5000 HP and no elemental weakness, they can
linger... fortunately they're not Heavy, so Odin takes care of your problems.

All things here are vulnerable to Confuse and Stop, so anyone with the !Sing
ability can really help out. Odin can kill everything except those blasted
Death Dealers, which is another thing to remember. Boosted Syldra cleans major
house when Odin would just throw his lame Gungnir. If you walk around with
Reflect Rings, you'll be protected from Level Checkers and Baldanders' Aeroga;
Bone Mail helps against Roulette (the attack will fully heal the 'undead'
target). Mostly though, I find it works best to have two Air Knife characters
summoning Syldra while sporting Hermes Sandals. They'll have obliterated every
encounters in this dungeons before they can cast whatever. 

Hop on and off the chain to lower yourself into the ruins. The room you enter
contains a few chests; an Ether to the left and a Cottage to the right. Pass
through two doors and find two more chests containing an Elixir and some Dark
Matter. Leave the room.

This new room takes you to three ever-revolving chains; the right-most one
takes you to a chest containing another Elixir. Ignore the middle one and take
the left-most chain to get to the exit of this room. If you wish to obtain one
or more Rune Chimes, this is the room with the highest odds of running into
Baldanders, so there you go.

The third room has you facing two stairs; take the right stairway to see a
chest containing a Blood Sword. Take the other stairway to find another
revolving chain; it'll take you out of these ruins and into... the Phantom
Village?

You can't talk to the NPCs, or draw hilarious genitalia on their faces or
anything, so that's a bore. You can't shop, sleep in beds, do anything. You can
drink from the grey pot with healing water though, so you're fully restored!
Keep on going; you can't play the piano, you can't take the Thief Knife (since
the bartender blocks your path), you can't even interact with the crate in the
Armor Shop to open up the path to the second Armor Shop. Boring, boring. Leave
this place only to find yourself in the forest... not too surprising, since the
Phantom Village in the timestream also rested amidst the trees.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.51.3  Interdimensional Rift; the Forest
**********************************

  Opponents:
  White Flame (#208), Moss Fungus (#209), Farfarello (#210), Calofisteri (#300)

  Container contents:
  Dragon Fang, Enhancer, Ribbon, Lillith Rod

  Miscellaneous items:
  Elixir (rare White Flame steal), Lilith Rod (rare Farfarello steal)

  Blue spells:
  White Wind, Pond's Chorus, Lilliputian Lyric

"Midway upon the journey of our life
 I found myself within a forest dark,
 for the straightforward pathway had been lost.
 Ah me! How hard a thing it is to say
 What was this forest savage, rough and stern,
 which in the very thought renews the fear."
 - Dante Aligheiri's Inferno

It is said that evil beasts were sealed into the Rift; right along with the
forests and caves they were living in! Oh, my...

  35 % White Flame x2, Moss Fungus, Farfarello
  35 % Moss Fungus x3
  23 % Moss Fungus, White Flame x4
   6 % Farfarello x5

White Flames are much more easily taken care of than their palette swap
brethren, luckily. All they do is absorb Holy, so beware. Third and fourth
turns could theoretically be spent on White Wind, but they're dead by then.
1600 HP isn't much.

Moss Fungus is said to grow on the graves of poisoned people. They're weak to
Fire-elemental attacks and Water-elemental ones; Leviathan works out nicely.
They attack physically, but beware: !Knock Silly sets Confuse. They can also
employ Web and Spore to set Slow and Poison. If you use !Lance on one, they'll
have a 66% shot at countering with Rainbow Wind, so eh... don't use !Lance.
Let's be honest here; have you ever used !Lance?

Farfarello are tiny little trickster wizards that either drain your resources
with Drain or Osmose or sing a happy little tune, either Pond's Chorus or
Lilliputian Lyric. They come with inherent Protect, so physical attacks aren't
your route; strong MT magical attacks are better; they're weak to Bio spells.
You can steal a rare Lilith Rod, but you also find one in a chest here.

Leviathan slays all encounters in a single Tidal Wave. Make sure to protect
against Confuse; you can use a Lamia's Tiara, Rainbow Dress, Red Slippers, Bone
Mail or the Berserk ability. Ribbons do NOT protect against Confuse! Mirage
Vests also make sure you dodge at least one !Knock Silly, which is generally
all you need before you get a Leviathan in there.

Like in the Great Forest of Moore, your vision is impaired. Unlike the Great
Forest of Moore, teleportation magickx will do you no good; the Teleport spell
won't work here. Don't worry, I'll guide you through.

Your vision is impaired, like it was in the Great Forest of Moore. You have
an additional disadvantage though; you cannot use Teleport to flee the scene
(though in-battle Teleport is fine). Behind the first large tree you encounter
on your path, you can find a chest which contains a Dragon Fang. When you press
on further into the forest, you'll find a field; stick to the left and you'll
find a chest containing a Ribbon. If you never stole one, this is your fourth
one. Hey, status immunity across the board! Go down and find a chest with an
Enhancer. Go up again, leaning to the right and you'll find the chest
containing the Lilith Rod.

The Lilith Rod performs an attack similar to the !Flirt ability; when the
strike is successful (you'll see a purple hit animation on the target, never
works on a Heavy target), the next turn of the target will be spent doing
nothing. Any equipment that boosts !Dance and !Flirt also increases the success
rate of the Lilith Rod. 25% of the time, the Rod may follow up with an Osmose
attack. It's such a weird thing. Waving your 'rod' around usually doesn't charm
anyone, let alone fungus. The Lilith Rod doesn't function with !Jump, !Mug,
!Rapid Fire or !Focus. 

   iOS/Android: The Lilith Rod seems to function a bit differently in this 
   version, using !Flirt around 66% of the time and casting Osmose 33% of the
   time. 

A narrow passageway to the right takes you to a tree with a hole in it. A tree
spirit from the Forest of Moore? And sure enough, one comes out to open up a
passageway between its roots. But before you can press on, it seems not all
tree spirits are helpful. Appearing from between the roots is Calofisteri, one
of the Eleven of the Rift.

Calofisteri
Level: 68, HP: 18000, MP: 1000
Defense: 50, Magic Defense: 30
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Reflect Ring (rare), Plumed Hat (common)
Win: Diamond Plate (rare)
Creature: Humanoid, Magic Beast, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Old, Silence, Slow
Can't Evade: Song
Attacks: Drain, Poison, Bio, Cura, Protect, Esuna, Shell, Reflect, Regen,
  Haste, Old, Stop

Hey, another naked chick in the forest! But this one is blue... As a corrupted
guardian spirit of the woods, Calofisteri is a subtle warrior. Her AI script
changes when you have Reflect or when she has Reflect. When neither you nor she
has the reflective barrier up, she will cast either Stop, Old or Reflect (which
may provoke her to cast more damaging spells off her). If the blue wonder
has Reflect set but you do not, she will cast Bio, Poison, Old and Stop on
herself to do damage and disable; she may also randomly cast Reflect again,
which bounces off her own Reflect barrier, thus setting the status on one of
the characters (which in turn allows her to start buffing herself). If you have
Reflect, she will start casting Cura, Protect, Esuna, Shell, Regen and Haste on
you to give herself beneficial statuses; these can all be removed with Dispel,
Reflect or not.

Whenever she takes damage, she will counter with a Drain spell; aside from the
very rare Bio spell, this is her only way of dealing damage. At around 350
damage, that's bad news for the naked blue chick in the forest.

Since so very few of her spells actually damage you, simply make removing her
buffs and debuffs with respectively Dispel and Esuna a priority. She has no
particular resistances, so aside from a Protect, Shell or Reflect she may put
up, damaging her is not a problem. Since she is both a Humanoid and Magic
Beast, the Man-Eater, Beast Killer and Artemis Bow all punch right through to
the heart of the matter. Silence Spellblade, Slow or Romeo's Ballad and setting
Old and Poison aren't all that necessary, but since Calofisteri is obviously 
used to playing with her prey, it might be fun to do the same to her before you
show her that annoyer tactics are neither fun nor productive in the long run.

Or, you know, set Haste and Berserk on an archer with the Artemis Bow and
have yourself a well-deserved trip to the bathroom, take a drink out of the
fridge or call your parents for a minute. It'll be over when you get back to
the screen. 

When you're done here, passing beneath the tree will take you to a cave.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.51.4  Interdimensional Rift; the Cave
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Drippy (#100), Lycaon (#101), Poison Eagle (#103), Zombie Dragon (#104),
  Metamorph (#114), Orukat (#211), Great Dragon (#212), Achelon (#213),
  Golem (#271), Omega (#311)

  Container contents:
  Coral Ring, Angel Ring

  Miscellaneous items:
  Dark Matter (common Orukat steal), Dragon Fang (common Great Dragon steal,
  rare Great Dragon drop), Turtle Shell (common Achelon steal), Staff of Light
  (rare Metamorph drop), Omega Medal (guaranteed Omega drop)

  Summon spells:
  Golem

  Blue spells:
  Flame Thrower, Flash, Vampire, Magic Hammer

"And they shall go into the holes of the rocks, and into the caves of the
earth, for fear of the Light Warriors, and for the glory of their majesty, when
they arise to shake terribly the earth." - Isaiah

  First room
  35 % Orukat x4
  35 % Achelon x3
  23 % Great Dragon
   6 % Zombie Dragon, Poison Eagle, Drippy

  Waterfall room
  35 % Orukat x2, Achelon
  35 % Great Dragon, Achelon, Orukat
  23 % Achelon x3
   6 % Golem, Bone Dragon, Zombie Dragon --> Lycaon x5

  Third room
  35 % Great Dragon
  35 % Orukat x4
  23 % Achelon x3
   6 % Metamorph (Ramuh, Crew Dust, Zombie Dragon)

First off, note that in the second room of this cave, Golem can be found if you
missed his rocky ass in Drakenvale earlier. It's the rarest encounter there. If
you did manage to register that you recruited Golem, that rare formation will
be contain five Lycaon cats.

Orukat are the evil blobs of eyes, rising to meet your determined stare. Their
gaze may petrify; they can use Evil Eye when alone, which sets Petrify. They
have wonky elemental attributes (absorb Holy, weak to Water and Earth) but have
a common Dark Matter steal so that's all good. This is the easiest Dark Matter
source in the game, and given its beneficial nature when used with !Mix or
!Combine, farming them is a good thing. Just lay off the Excalibur, Holy Lance
and Holy spells.

Great Dragon is neither Dragon nor Heavy. Boo! Fraud! It uses Blaze and Flame
Thrower alongside physical attacks to damage, and may counter any non-spell
(!Black, !White, !Time, !Blue or !Summon) with an Earthquake attack. Setting
Float is easier than treading carefully around his humongous ass. You can steal
common Dragon Fangs from him... open wide buddy, here comes the tooth fairy's
evil twin brother, and he don't leave no coins... (unless you use !Zeninage).
Weak to Water as well.

Speaking of evil twin brothers, meet Catoblepas'! He's called Achelon. Attacks
physically, counters damage with Evil Eye, done. Common Turtle Shell for
stealing, and nobody knows why or how.

This is an easy dungeon! Set Float to make sure the Great Dragon's Earthquake
attack fails, and summon Leviathan to wash away all your troubles. All three
enemies here are weak to the element. Thieves are nice to farm !Mix and
!Combine consumables; the Aegis Shield and Ribbon protect against the Evil Eye
attacks you shouldn't encounter at all. The Great Dragon will probably survive
a single Tidal Wave; just do whatever to it to finish it, it's not Heavy and
vulnerable to Mini and Toad.

Descend the stairs to find yourself in the main room where water streams down
the rocks. The random encounters here'd better be careful! Continue to find an
entrance. Go past it, and stand under the waterfall to the right. Go up to find
a hidden entrance to a chest containing an Angel Ring. Nice! Head back, and
find the entrance again. Go in it! That's the purpose of an entrance. You can
also skip it and slide down the waterfall in the back, but you'd miss out on a
Save Point and a chest. You see a thing of darkness down below; we'll get
there.

Find a chest with a Coral Ring, go down to find a Save Point. Cottage and Save
up, then appear out of the entrance to find a timeless weapon without a soul,
OMEGA. You can try to defeat it now, but you'll need some specific strategies
(in short, !Rapid Fire, Dual Wield and !Spellblade 5 to 6 in a single
character). If you want to fight the technological abomination, you can do so:

"The roiling skies let loose a vile beast without a soul; Omega was its name."

[OMEGA-LINK]

In a normal game, you're more likely to want to pass it up right now, it's in
no way mandatory. If you never face the thing, you'll never engage it. Flee
past it to reach the exit of the cave and... a library?

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.51.5  Interdimensional Rift; the Library
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Apanda (#299)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Ash (guaranteed Apanda drop, rare and common Apanda steal)

  Blue spells:
  Magic Hammer

"At other times he would pass an entire day in the great hall of the library,
leafing through manuscripts as if seeking nothing but his own enjoyment
(while, around us, the corpses of monks, horribly murdered, were multiplying)."
- ancient text on the historical murders at the Library of the Ancients

It's an eeeeevil library, mind. I think both religious and anti-religious
zealots would agree that books can be very dangerous. We've already experienced
this fighting the possessed tomes in the Library of the Ancients... again,
those Ancients. What comes next? Page 512? Page... 1024?

First, examine the two books on the shelves. The right one talks about Omega
and Shinryu, one of which we've already encountered. They were more powerful
even than the legendary weapons twelve, thus more powerful than the Enuo we've
been hearing so much about. Exciting stuff. The left one talks about Gigaflare
and how it leaves the caster defenseless. If we could learn Gigaflare, we'd
certainly be wary... but we can't, 'cause we have no more room in the menu to
list it.

The book on the table triggers a dimensional switch, but its guardian Apanda,
one of the Eleven of the Rift, jumps out to stop you from ever observing its
effects. But hey, if it thought we'd never get this far he must be a poor judge
of strength. Buddy, have we got the surprise for you...

Apanda
Level: 59, HP: 22200, MP: 1000
Defense: 23, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 30%
Steal: Ash (common & rare)
Win: Ash (always)
Weakness: Fire
Creature: Magic Beast, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Berserk, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, Protect, Confuse, Drain, Magic Hammer, Wind Slash, Web,
  Dischord

This guy has a relation with Byblos, the first servant of Exdeath we ever did
defeat, the one that came into Bartz' world together with Exdeath, fleeing
before the Warriors of Dawn. What this demon is, is unclear. However, the
combat behavior of Byblos and Apanda is similar and Apanda also shares a fear
of Ifrit. Maybe this guy's, like, Bizarro Byblos or something. Let's examine!

It will attack with all sorts of magical attacks to complement simply punching
you in the face 'til you bleed; Confuse, Magic Hammer, Wind Slash, Web and
Dischord may all appear. Dischord is bad, but you could counter with a !Mix
that raises level. Hi-Potion + Dragon Fang equals Dragon Power, which raises
level by 20. Any magic attack (again, !Black, !White, !Time, !Summon and !Blue)
may provoke either Drain or Toad as a counter; any other damaging attack may
provoke either Drain or Protect. Quickly within the fight, Apanda will have
Protect up. Drain will do around 600 HP, already a fair bit more powerful than
Calofisteri's Drain.

Even though Ifrit is one of the weaker Fire-elemental attacks we can conjure up
at this point, Apanda has a severe phobia for our ally. When summoned, he will
cause Apanda to turn the other way and cower in a corner.

"Gah, Ifrit! Scary!"
*tremble*

The next turn, Apanda will find the courage to turn around, use Panacea, and
resume the battle, only to cower again when Ifrit is summoned once more. This
way, you never really have to battle Apanda at all; summon Ifrit and pound upon
the terrified thing 'til it stops moving. Firaga spells are supremely powerful,
as is Firaga Spellblade, the Flametongue and the like. Another strategy is
simply setting Berserk and let Golem, Mighty Guard and/or Blink take care of
the rest.

Panacea is the Greek goddess of curative medicine; named after her is a
mythical medicine that is supposed to cure all ailments. If you want to cure
Apanda's fear of Ifrit permanently, setting Berserk or killing it senseless
both get the job done nicely.

When Apanda has fallen, you've engaged the dimensional switch. Wonder where we
turn up now? Too bad you can't use the bed here to rest in.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.51.6  Interdimensional Rift; the Tower
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Ninja (#214), Dragon Aevis (#215)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Artemis Bow (rare Dragon Aevis steal)

  "Believe it or not, I'm walking on air.
  I never thought I could feel so free.
  Flying away on a wing and a prayer,
  Who could it be?
  Believe it or not, it's OH MY GOD NINJAS ARE EVERYWHERE GET THEM PLEASE HELP"

  - Joey Scarbury, 528 b.C.

  35 % Dragon Aevis x2
  35 % Ninja x2
  23 % Dragon Aevis
   6 % Dragon Aevis, Ninja

This is a very straightforward part without any chests, only two new enemies. A
Thief or character with the Find Passages support ability can see where to go;
even blind, it's easy since you won't fall off.

Ninjas are not Humanoid, so don't even bother. They're killing machines. When
struck with !Attack, they may counter with Image to avoid the next two physical
blows altogether. They attack physically, sometimes with !Yagyuu's Strike which
sets Sap. Yagyuu is this famous Japanese samurai or something, possibly famous
for setting Sap with his sword strikes. They're vulnerable to Petrify and Death
and are not Heavy, but have incredible amounts of Evasion (70%) and Magic
Evasion (90%) so taking advantage of those weaknesses is difficult. Petrify 
Spellblade effects paired with !Aim or !Rapid Fire help out, as does Odin (but 
it won't execute Zantetsuken when a Dragon Aevis is present). Level 4 Graviga 
also works and never misses. They may rarely drop the expensive Fuma Shuriken!

The Dragon Aevis' are not Dragons, but they ARE Aevis. So the Aevis Killer helps
out here. They're Heavy as well, so Odin can't even solve this one for you.
They attack physically and use Breath Wing, which is a concern; none of the
major status ailments work except for Petrify, so Catoblepas should be called
forthwith. They're also weak to Water, so Leviathan might be a better solution
for you. You can get a rare Artemis Bow from them; hey, why not. They're very
powerful versus Magic Beasts. They also drop Dragon Fangs all the freaking
time, which is great. When you Catch them, they'll use Breath Wing upon
Release. That's a really sweet attack to use in the final battle of this game,
so if you want to you can Catch one or more here and store them for later
usage.

There's one direction you can go in. Go in that direction until you reach the
Dimension Castle, the halls of which are filled with an exhaustive amount of
treasure and danger.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.51.7  Interdimensional Rift; the Dimension Castle
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Mythril Dragon (#36), Mini Magician (#118), Galajelly (#119), Mammon (#120),
  Blind Wolf (#124), Hellraiser (#125), Magic Dragon (#127), Red Dragon (#133),
  Yellow Dragon (#134), Sword Dancer (#216), Death Claw (#217), Fury (#218),
  Yojimbo (#219), Iron Giant (#220), Ramuh (#255), Azulmagia (#301), Alte
  Roite (#302), Jura Aevis (#303), Catastrophe (#304), Halicarnassus (#305),
  Twintania (#306)

  Container contents: Thor Hammer, Hermes Sandals, Man-Eater, Rainbow Dress,
  Red Sandals

  Miscellaneous items:
  Enhancer (rare Sword Dancer steal), Thor Hammer (rare Death Claw steal),
  Cursed Ring (rare Fury steal), Reflect Ring (common Fury steal), Murakumo
  (rare Yojimbo steal), Titan's Gloves (rare Azulmagia steal), Dragon Lance
  (rare Jura Aevis steal), Aegis Shield (rare Halicarnassus steal), Elven
  Mantle (rare Halicarnassus drop), Tinklebell (rare Twintania drop), Flame
  Shield (rare Twintania steal)

  Summon spells:
  Ramuh

  Blue spells:
  Death Claw, Level 3 Flare, Dark Spark, Off-Guard, Goblin Punch, Mind Blast,
  Aeroga, Doom, Roulette, Aero, Level 2 Old, 1000 Needles, Level 5 Death,
  Level 4 Graviga, Mighty Guard, Vampire, Lilliputian Lyric, Flash, ???, Aqua
  Breath, Aera, Flame Thrower, Pond's Chorus, Missile, Magic Hammer, Time Slip,
  White Wind, Self-Destruct

"But I am not in heart to describe beauty, for when I had seen the view I
explored further. Doors, doors, doors everywhere, and all locked and bolted.
In no place save from the windows in the castle walls is there an available
exit. The castle is a veritable prison, and I am a prisoner! "
  - memoire of an unlucky interdimensional traveler

That's a lot of stuff, isn't it? This is the final area of the Interdimentionsal
Rift before we dive into the very Void itself. Halicarnassus rules the 
Dimension Castle, and four of the Eleven of the Rift are still alive. Throw 
open those heavy doors and meet your destiny.

  Ground floor, including wing towers
  35 % Sword Dancer x2
  35 % Death Claw x2, Sword Dancer x2
  23 % Iron Giant
   6 % Magic Dragon x3, Hellraiser, Blind Wolf

Sword Dancers are the graceful footsoldiers of whatever civilization was
imprisoned together with the Dimension Castle. They can attack physically, use
!High Kick (which is more powerful) and Danse Macabre, which sets Zombie to a
single character. Angel Rings help protect against that (but Ribbons won't),
and note that any status ailment can work on them (including Toad, which just
stops the possibility of Danse Macabre). Humanoid, not Heavy. You can nab some
rare Enhancers from them, sweet swords for your Blue Mages if you don't plan
on using !Attack at all and the best enchantable blades for Mystic Knights.

Death Claws use Death Claw all the freaking time. They're notable since they
can't be Controlled, I guess; weak to Water, not Heavy, so those with Leviathan
and Odin can choose how to kill them. They have a rare Thor Hammer for you;
you could get one now; you'll find one in a chest here as well.

Iron Giants are the second-worst Giants. They attack with powerful physical
swings from that grand blade of his, and uses Rocket Punch to deal 50% current
HP damage and set the Confuse status. When struck with an !Attack, he'll
counter with a powerful !Takedown, so don't do that 'cause !Takedown is
unblockable and ignores Defense, making it quite potent. They look very
intimidating, but they are vulnerable to Death and Petrify and are not Heavy,
so take advantage of that fact rather than trying to plow through their 18000
HP.

Throw open the heavy doors, and meet your destiny. Here, in the main hall, are
seven exits. You appeared out of one. Another one is a staircase in the middle
of the room going up, but the doors there are closed. Going around the
staircase will have you find the stairs going down to the basement, but we'll
get there later. To the left, the visible door leads to an otherwise
featureless little room packed with spears you can't pick up. The other one
takes you outside, to a small tower. Here, in a chest, you can pick up a Thor
Hammer, which is a bit less powerful than the Titan's Axe but Back Row OK and
therefor better versus random monster formations. It is also an Aerial weapon;
you actually throw this thing around, much like the weapon of the comic book
hero Thor. Or so I've been told; comics are for total geeks.

Go back to the main hall. To the right, the visible door gets you nowhere like
the other one, so go outside. Another small tower houses a chest containing
Hermes Sandals. Go back to the main hall, and circle around the staircase to
find the stairs going down to the basement.

In the basement, there are no random encounters. There are quite a few NPCs
running around here though. To the left is Azulmagia, one of the Eleven of the
Rift. To the right, Catastrophe the beholder is holding a girl captive;
Catastrophe is another one of the Eleven, though apparently loathe to work
together with Azulmagia (or the other way around). A total of six old men are
locked away in their cells as well. What a mess.

Walk to the left first. There's a chest there you can't reach yet, but there's
also Azulmagiavwaiting for you. The towering fiend is optional, but nets you
a new item and a Save Point, so why not? He's a righteous detective, this one,
inquiring into your business like a nosy no-good. Good boys don't lie; but
good guys also get punished in the Dimension Castle. Proclaim your heroism
and face Azulmagia, monstrous mage of the Eleven of the Rift.

Azulmagia
Level: 57, HP: 27900, MP: 50000
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 70
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 33%
Steal: Titan's Gloves (rare), Elixir (common)
Win: Black Cowl (rare)
Weakness: Poison
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable: Darkness
Attacks: Doom, Roulette, Aqua Breath, Level 5 Death, Level 4 Graviga, Level 2
  Old, Level 3 Flare, Pond's Chorus, Lilliputian Lyric, Flash, Time Slip, Death
  Claw, Aero, Aera, Aeroga, Flame Thrower, Goblin Punch, Dark Spark, Off-Guard,
  Mind Blast, Vampire, Magic Hammer, Mighty Guard, Self-Destruct, ???, 1000
  Needles, White Wind, Missile

Azulmagia uses Blue Magic, like, a lot. I mean, like all the time. He's telling
us he can quit whenever he wants, but we can tell he's not too sure himself
anymore. Azulmagia lacks a few Blue spells, though! Moon Flute and Transfusion,
Azulmagia doesn't know and doesn't care about. But the attacks Aeroga, 1000
Needles, Level 3 Flare, Aqua Breath, Magic Hammer and Self-Destruct are Blue
spells Azulmagia never got his ginormous hands on, and he'll be more than happy
to test them out on you should he learn them in the process of this battle...
In addition, there's the Titan's Gloves to think about, unique in this game as
a rare steal from this guy only. You miss them now, you miss them forever, so
take a Thief and Return caster in there.

When you use any of the Blue spells I mentioned earlier on him, he'll learn 
them from you and change his AI script accordingly.

Normal AI Script:
33% Dark Spark, 33% Off-Guard, 33% Mind Blast
33% Doom, 33% Roulette, 33% Level 2 Old
33% Level 5 Death, 33% Level 4 Graviga, 33% Mighty Guard
33% Lilliputian Lyric, 33% Flash, 33% ???
33% Aera, 33% Flame Thrower, 33% Missile
33% Time Slip, 33% Death Claw, 33% White Wind

Learned Level 3 Flare!
66% Level 3 Flare, 33% Dark Spark
66% Level 3 Flare, 33% Off-Guard
66% Level 3 Flare, 33% Goblin Punch
66% Level 3 Flare, 33% Mind Blast
(return to normal AI script)

Learned Aeroga!
66% Aeroga, 33% Doom
66% Aeroga, 33% Roulette
66% Aeroga, 33% Aero
66% Aeroga, 33% Level 2 Old
(return to normal AI script)

Learned 1000 Needles!
66% 1000 Needles, 33% Level 5 Death
66% 1000 Needles, 33% Level 4 Graviga
66% 1000 Needles, 33% Mighty Guard
(return to normal AI script)

Learned Vampire!
66% Vampire, 33% Lilliputian Lyric
66% Vampire, 33% Flash
66% Vampire, 33% ???
(return to normal AI script)

Learned Aqua Breath!
66% Aqua Breath, 33% Aera
66% Aqua Breath, 33% Flame Thrower
66% Aqua Breath, 33% Pond's Chorus
66% Aqua Breath, 33% Missile
(return to normal AI script)

Learned Magic Hammer!
66% Magic Hammer, 33% Time Slip
66% Magic Hammer, 33% Death Claw
66% Magic Hammer, 33% White Wind
(return to normal AI script)

Learned Self-Destruct!
Self-Destruct
(ashes to ashes, dust to dust)

Phew! I'm not normally a fan of direct AI transcript, but since you may want to
learn a Blue spell or two here, the specific circumstances of their appearance
may be relevant for you. Azulmagia's quite absent-minded, that much is true;
when you teach him a Blue spell, then teach him another Blue spell, you can
teach him the first Blue spell again! He'll regain his enthusiasm for the spell
as well.

If your level allows you to dodge Level 3 Flare, teaching him that spell is the
safest for you. If that is not an option, the Magic Hammer routine is also a
great one. Aggravating Azulmagia into using Aeroga or Vampire is a bad idea;
Aeroga deals about 1800 damage, and Vampire and the ??? spell in that list are
very dangerous on a creatures with over 20000 HP. Another neat thing to
consider is Reflect + Level 3 Flare; everything in that part except for Goblin
Punch is Reflectable, Level 3 Flare hurts Azulmagia and Dark Spark and
Off-Guard are super-duper when they connect on Azulmagia.

People may tell you to use Self-Destruct to end the battle! Possible, it does
work, but you'll lose out on ABP for a single character as Azulmagia will take
a character with him when he explodes for maximum damage. 

Azulmagia has a lot of attacks, some of which are very dangerous. Throw up
Mighty Guard and Hastega. Shell will reduce damage dealt and reduce the hit
rate of status ailment spells as well. Cast Magic Hammer or possibly Level 3
Flare, and the battle is yours. Bio Spellblade is very powerful. Bio is not a
very powerful spell, so that Poison-elemental weakness is much better exploited
with Mystic Knights. Set Berserk for added effects; if you have one or two
casters to heal and clear bad effects, possibly boost levels or stats through
!Sing or !Mix, a Mystic Knight can take Azulmagia down by itself.

Titan's Gloves are a *bit* better than Kaiser Knuckles for those not punching
Barehanded; they have better Defense, boost Stamina (for Regen) and protect
against Mini. Oh, joy. They can only be equipped by Heavy Armor Jobs, and they
decrease Agility and Magic Power by 5. They're not that great an item. They're
unique though!

There's a Save Point here now, so that's beneficial. Do your thing with it,
then look around to see what's the buzz. You can engage the old men through
the bars if you must. This way, you don't have to open the door and can
nicely pick them off at your leisure. These jokers have rare Dragon Lances you
can steal, and can start with an Encircle attack. I suggest a Thief and two
characters capable of casting Return if you want to make sure you get a Dragon
Lance from at least one of the battles.

Alte Roite
Level: 58, HP: 6000, MP: 1000
Defense: 45, Magic Defense: 60
Evasion: 70%, Magic Evasion: 60%
Steal: Holy Water (rare), Potion (common)
Win: Healing Staff (rare)
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Berserk, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Encircle

Oh... my aching back!

This is probably a mistranslation of 'Alte Leute', German for 'old people'.
Just 'cause there's six of them, doesn't mean they're not serious business.
They'll attack physically, which ain't too bad, or use Encircle 33% of the time
to remove a character from the fight. That blows, and you can't really stop it.
Berserk works, but you don't wanna set it 'cause after defeating the old man,
he transforms into the creature you're probably here for: the Jura Aevis! If
you set Berserk, kill him with a Counterattack or use Chaos Cannon to kill him,
he won't transform. If you use a Gold Needle on Alte Roite, it seems he is
cursed with a petrified spine; he'll return the favor by healing himself
completely, then go on attacking. Craziness! His Evasion and Magic Evasion is
through the roof, as is his Magic Defense and to a slightly lesser extent his
Defense. Bio and Flare punch through nicely, as does Holy. After 6000 HP...

Alte Roite reveals his true form!

Jura Aevis
Level: 61, HP: 15000, MP: 1000
Defense: 35, Magic Defense: 30
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Dragon Lance (rare), Turtle Shell (common)
Win: Dragon Fang (always)
Absorbs: Wind, Lightning, Ice, Fire
Nullifies: Earth
Status: Float
Creature: Aevis
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Old, Paralyze, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Breath Wing, Blaze, Lightning, Maelstrom,
  Entangle

Blast, he became a lot harder. On the upside, he lost his Heavy nature, which
is absolutely the path to his destruction. You want this thing to appear
because it has a rare Dragon Lance for you. Dragon Lances are the strongest
Lances in the pre-GBA era, and the key to the defeat of some very nasty
critters. You can also get them later in a random encounter, but this thing is
here now! His many HP-based attacks are a pain, but you can keep him busy with
Paralyze; Whips and the Remora summon help out there, as well as Mind Blast.
Slow also helps. Since his level is 61, the Dark Spark/Level 5 Death combo
works; but since he isn't Heavy anyway, you might want to forego this
bothersome technique and just cast Banish or summon Odin instead.

Especially if you plan on defeating the Magic Pot and the Famed Mimic Gogo
later, obtaining Dragon Lances is very nice. However, with every Return spell
you cast you'll have to plow through another old man; waiting for the Crystal
Dragon later may be quicker farming.

The three old men in the bottom jail cell were running around a chest
containing a Rainbow Dress; the three old men in the other one guarded some Red
Slippers.

Now that you have all the Dragon Lances you'll ever need (or not), time to
move on! If we are to continue, we'll have to get past the beholder,
Catastrophe. You can't open the door, but you may gaze into Catastrope's Evil
Eye.

Eyes to see you...

Catastrophe
Level: 71, HP: 19997, MP: 19997
Defense: 40, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 15%, Magic Evasion: 33%
Steal: Cottage (rare), Elixir (common)
Win: Gold Needle (always)
Absorbs: Earth
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Old, Paralyze, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, 100 Gs, Evil Eye, Earth Shaker

Catastrophe is not intelligent enough to put up a decent fight like, say,
Azulmagia; C. packs the punch, but doesn't know how to deliver it. He'll attack
randomly with physical attacks, stare at you with his Evil Eye to set Petrify
to a single target or use Earth Shaker to deal anywhere between 900 and 1100
damage across the board. He won't even counter stuff, but he will get mad at
you if you cleverly avoid his Earth-based attacks with Float; he'll stop
attacking and use 100 Gs to pull you down to the castle's floors.

So, you know, casting Float every turn will have him use 100 Gs every turn, and
YOU still have three other characters for the damage department. In addition,
you could even set Float outside of battle, then waltz in there with Reflect
Rings; 100 Gs reflects, so you just won the battle right there as Catastrophe
won't ever attack again unless you Dispel your own Reflect/Float status. A
single character with the Reflect Ring/Float thing will have Catastrophe
fixated on pulling him or her down, so the other three can use all those other
Accessories you like so much.

Aegis Shields and Ribbons protect against Evil Eye, but if you let Catastrophe
attack, Evil Eye really isn't the worst of your problems; Earth Shaker is very
powerful and can take you down fast unless you Curaga or White Wind it up every
single turn following it. Since Catastrophe doesn't have any elemental
weaknesses, crippling status immunities or exploitable natures to take
advantage of, just throw out your most powerful attacks. His level is 71, so
after a successful Dark Spark he becomes vulnerable to Level 5 Death. Something
to remember!

Look at that. Eye haven't seen such an easy fight in ages, but it's not polite
to stare. Ah, enough with the eye puns, it looks more like an evil spud
anyway.

Receive your Kiss of Blessing from the girl. What's a girl like that doing in a
place like this? Don't ask her, she'll think you're hitting on her. When you go
up, you'll find yourself outside!

  Outside
  35 % Death Claw x2, Sword Dancer x2
  35 % Fury x2, Death Claw
  23 % Yojimbo, Ninja
   6 % Ramuh --> Mythril Dragon

If you let old man Ramuh wander the forests near Istory all those chapters ago,
you can find him here, outside, as the rarest encounter. Else, a Mythril Dragon
takes his place.

Furies are supermages that are able to cast two spells every turn; normally,
they'll combine either Death, Berserk or nothing with Stop, Drain or nothing.
When alone, they get especially mad at you and combine two -aga spells or
combine either Silence, Toad or Mini with Comet, Slowga or Bio. That's a lot of
spells. They're weak to Water, so Leviathan kills them easily; they're Heavy,
so there's no easy getting rid of them. Silence, Death and Petrify do work when
Leviathan is not as your disposal, though. If you want more Cursed Rings for
who knows what, get 'em from these guys.

Yojimbo's !Wring sets both Poison and Darkness; an annoying combo. It was
supposed to set Paralyze, but it doesn't. These ronin carry a Murakumo as a
rare steal, a stronger Katana than the Masamune; it lacks any special features,
though. Set Mini or whatever, who cares how you beat them as anything goes :p

Ignore the door you first see and walk over the left wing of the Dimension
Castle. You'll find yourself in an apparently featureless room, but Thieves
know better; there's a passage to the right. Go in, follow the trail until you
reach the hitherto unreachable chest containing a Man-Eater. If you didn't use
Thieves, these are a total of three Dancer-only pieces of equipment you see for
the first time. Trace back your steps, and enter the second floor or the
Dimension Castle.

There are no random encounters here in the throneroom, but if you descend in
the middle of the room, there will be random encounters in the staircase. Flip
the switch to open the doors; these doors will be closed again once you leave
this room, so unless you forgot something on the other side there's little
point in going through the heavy wooden doors.

  Staircase
  49 % Iron Giant, Death Claw x3
  35 % Death Claw x2, Sword Dancer x2
   6 % Yellow Dragon x2

The throne has but a single seat... a lonely king, this castle has. If you try
to go to the exit once, you'll be pulled onto the throne; twice, and
Halicarnassus of the Questionable Gender appears to kill you. Well, y'know,
he/she tries. If you wanna be a smart-ass, cast the Toad spell on all
characters not equipped with a Ribbon or Genji Gloves; you'll understand how
this helps out when the battle starts.

Halicarnassus
Level: 97, HP: 33333, MP: 5000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 66%
Steal: Aegis Shield (rare), Staff of Light (common)
Win: Elven Cape (rare)
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Mini, Darkness, Old, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Haste, Shell, Dispel, Holy, Ribbit,
  Reverse Polarity, (Strong) Attack

King Queen of the Dimension Castle will start the battle with the Alchymia's
Ribbit attack, toggling the Toad status on all party members. Those not
protected by the Ribbon or Genji Gloves will find themselves looking small,
green and delicious in the eyes of strange old men in Quelb (also, the French).
Those who entered the fight as a toad will find themselves restored. Sweet!

Halicarnassus will muck about for quite a few turns, using physical attacks and
the odd buff (Haste or Shell), Reverse Polarity or Dispel, but every seventh
turn will be a Holy spell cast at a single party member, which will either hit
Reflect or kill the target; it does about 9500 damage (half that with Shell in
place). After the Holy spell, Ribbit is used again; Toad's not cured from the
first attack will now be restored (and vice versa). The last thing to know is
that Halicarnassus hates third parties entering into the arena; Summon magic
will be punished by (Strong) Attack, which kills a character.

This is an easy battle; Dispel can be used to remove Haste and Shell if they
give you pain. Don't use Summon Magic. An odd status vulnerability of
Halicarnassus is Mini; though with his/her level being 97, it is almost
impossible to set. !Combine a Mallet with any type of shot and you'll have a
straight 75% chance of inflicting the status; note that (Strong) Attack is not
affected by Mini's debilitating effects. Also good is using !Mix to put
together an Eye Drops and a Dragon Fang; the resulting Dark Sigh sets Darkness,
really hindering the physical onslaught. Silence can be set, but lasts only a
while; Silence Spellblade is an option, but only debatably better than, say,
Flare Spellblade.

   iOS/Android: With Dark Sigh no longer unblockable, another way of setting 
   Darkness would be the Dark Cannon, !Combining Ash with some gunpowder. 

With his/her Holy spell being the only intimidating factor of the battle, you
could summon Carbuncle to help out; since Halicarnassus is not the target of
this summon spell, he/she won't counter. Black spells bouncing off four targets
is always a sweet deal; just be careful Dispel doesn't remove one of the four
barriers.

If you never got a Staff of Light, here's your chance; it's still not really
missable in the real sense of the word if you pass it up here, but waiting for
the rarest encounter to drop a rare drop is not a lot of fun. The Aegis Shield
is a great thing to have!

Behind the throne room, there is a back room with only some stairs going to the
top of the castle. There's a unique encounter pattern, though!

  Back room
  35 % Iron Giant
  35 % Death Claw, Fury, Sword Dancer
  23 % Iron Giant x2
   6 % Red Dragon

  Summit of castle
  35 % Sword Dancer, Fury x2
  35 % Death Claw, Fury, Sword Dancer
  23 % Yojimbo x2
   6 % Mammon x2, Galajelly x2, Mini Magician

At the top of the Dimension Castle, the last guardian between you and the Void
makes itself known; Twintania, the most terrible weapon of mass destruction the
Void has ever sealed within. He's nowhere near as sexy as his name implies.

Twintania
Level: 39, HP: 50000, MP: 10000
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 16
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Flame Shield (rare), Phoenix Down (common)
Win: Tinklebell (rare)
Weakness: Water, Holy
Creature: Magic Beast, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Atomic Ray, Ice Storm, Mind Blast, Wind Slash, Tidal Wave, Mega Flare,
  Giga Flare

Twintania is a right bastard. He'll attack with powerful MT attacks; Wind Slash
and Atomic Ray ain't that powerful, so forget about those. Mind Blast is a neat
trick of Twintania's; unlike any other foe or character in this fine game, he
can MT the thing, setting Paralyze to all four characters (unless protected by
Genji Gloves or Hermes Sandals). Ice Storm is just powerful stuff. He'll start
with two turns of either Atomic Ray, Ice Storm or a physical; then he'll use MT
Mind Blast, followed by two turns of Wind Slash. THEN, he charges Gigaflare,
but first I want to talk about his counters.

Twintania may counteract any magical attack (this means anything coming from
!Red, !White, !Black, !Time, !Blue or !Summon) with Mega Flare; any other
attack can provoke a 33% shot at Tidal Wave, which deals impressive Water-
elemental damage. Coral Rings help out against those, but it's probably
easier to not provoke the counter at all. 

Book of Magic, Volume 14: "The secret of Gigaflare... When storing power for
this magic, you become utterly defenseless for a moment... Casters, be wary."

When Twintania starts going for Giga Flare, he'll change into another monster.
Check this statblock for the changes:

Level: 30, HP: (as first form), MP: (as first form)
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Titan's axe (common)
Win: Murasame (rare)
Weakness: Water, Holy (as first form)
Creature: Magic Beast (no longer Heavy)
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Toad, Darkness, Silence, Slow, Stop

First off, note that Twintania became vulnerable to instant death through Holy
Spellblade, Odin's Zantetsuken, Death spells, Banish spells, Death Claw, the
works. In addition, Toad can be set! Since Twintania also changes items you can
steal and he drops, there's something to consider. The normal Twintania may
rarely drop a Tinklebell; it's the only one in the game, so you'll likely
salivate all over the idea of getting one even though it's not very good.
However it's also likely you'll want that second Titan's Axe; it's the only
second Titan's Axe in the game! So you'll likely want to

a) have Twintania change form and steal a Titan's Axe
b) survive Gigaflare somehow
c) kill the normal Twintania and hope for a Tinklebell

So, how to survive Gigaflare? You can set Toad, which causes Gigaflare to do
nothing. After another turn, Twintania's normal sprite which suddenly appear in
place of the toad; this signals the normal Twintania's return. Kill with
violence.

If you can set Shell and can take a punch of about 1550 HP on one or more
characters, you can survive Gigaflare straight up; Goliath Tonic may help out
if it's necessary. Without Shell, Gigaflare deals over 3000 HP damage, which is
too much for you (unless, again, Goliath Tonics).

When fighting Twintania, keep on the defensive on the first two turns as Ice
Storm is quite powerful and there is no need to swallow a Tidal Wave or Mega
Flare. When Twintania's signaling the Gigaflare attack; Steal! Then, set Toad
or brace for impact, whichever option you chose. When the normal Twintania is
back, pound for great justice (also, possibly a Tinklebell).

Since Twintania is weak to both Water and Holy, damaging him needn't be a
chore; your best bet is probably summoning Carbuncle and spamming spells; if he
counters with Megaflare, he'll just hurt himself (Megaflare is reflectable).
Another option is equipping Coral Rings across the board and going with
anything BUT spells; you'll keep yourself healed throughout the fight due to
Twintania's torrents.

The Tinklebell... the Gaia Bell functions like a Back Row OK Hammer, the Rune
Chime like a Rune weapon (such as the Rune Blade). The Tinklebell is the only
other bell besides the Diamond one that actually functions as a bell; it deals
unblockable, non-elemental magical damage from the Back Row and doesn't
function when Mute (but not pre-set Mute) is in effect. There you go. Feel
happy with it? You're not using Geomancers, it's not powerful and it doesn't
aid in spellcasting so nobody wants to hold it.

When you're done, walk on up and scroll on down to read the final chapter of
this long and epic struggle.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.51.8  Interdimensional Rift; the Last Floor
**********************************

  Opponents:
  King Behemoth (#221), Crystal Dragon (#222), Necromancer (#223), Gorgimera
  (#224), Mindflayer (#225), Crystelle (#226), Belphegor (#227), Mover (#228),
  Gilgamesh (#307), Necrophobe (#308), Barrier (#309), Gilgamesh (#310),
  Shinryu (#312), Exdeath (#313)

  Container contents:
  Elixir, Fuma Shuriken x3, Ragnarok

  Miscellaneous items:
  Elixir (common Necrophobe steal, Blood Sword (rare King Behemoth steal),
  Dragon Lance (rare Crystal Dragon steal), Bone Mail (rare Necromancer steal),
  Aegis Shield (rare Gorgimera steal), Main Gauche (rare Mindflayer steal),
  Rising Sun (rare Belphegor steal), Ice Shield (rare Belphegor drop),
  Genji Shield (common Gilgamesh steal), Thief's Gloves (rare Necrophobe
  steal), Reflect Ring (rare Barrier steal), Genji Armor (common Gilgamesh
  steal), Dragon's Whisker (rare Shinryu steal), Dragon Seal (guaranteed
  Shinryu drop), Wonder Rod (rare Exdeath steal)

  Blue spells:
  ???, Transfusion, Mind Blast, Flash, Roulette, Mighty Guard, Level 2 Old,
  Level 3 Flare

"That is, for Zen Buddhism, the term,

     E
          M
               P
                    T
                         Y

     does not refer to any particular

                                        STATE

Rather, it seems that Zen understands 'Empty' as something like

     THE
       ARDOR
          OF
         BE-ING

that guarantees the perpetual appearance and disappearance of whatever is."

 ...

Hey, it's the last floor. Here is where the Void is sealed. Crystalline islands
are floating in a vacuum. This is the center of the Interdimensional Rift,
where the most powerful and most evil creatures were sucked in. Best be on our
guard; this is where Exdeath is waiting for you, confident you'll never even
reach it while it gains ever-increasing mastery of the powers of all-consuming
nothing.

THIS is where all vile beings go that fall victim to Banish spells. This place
is so far removed from the normal world, your Teleport spells fail to take you
back now; you'll have to walk to the eldritch teleport zone you arrived with.

Best be on our guard.

  First floor:
  35 % King Behemoth
  35 % King Behemoth x2
  23 % Crystal Dragon
   6 % Belfegor, Belfegor

King Behemoth are towering... well, they're behemoths. As if they were living
embodiment of the deadly sin of sloth, they won' do a lot normally; every third
out of four turns, they'll attack physically, which is admittedly quite
painful. These creatures are dangerous because of their counter-attacks; every
spell is countered with a Meteo spell, every other damaging attack is countered
by either a normal physical or !Critical Attack, which deals 150% damage.
They're weak to Water-elemental attacks, but it shouldn't concern you; you'd
rather not damage these things. They've vulnerable to Death and Petrify, and
are not Heavy, so Break Spellblade effects, Catblepas, Odin or even Death Claw
(Paralyze stops the counter-Meteo) is the answer to the problem they pose. 
Odin is probably not wise though, since whenever he chooses the spear over
the sword, King Behemoth will counter with a Meteo spell. They may rarely drop
a Twin Lance and you can steal a rare Blood Sword from them, but I can't 
imagine you're swooning over either one at this point of the game.

Crystal Dragon is likely this dungeon's most formidable opponent. Sitting at
17500 HP, absorbing Fire, Ice, Lightning and Wind-elemental attacks, Heavy, the
works. It has Regen set when it starts the battle as well. It attacks with
Breath Wing 66% of the time, else the shiny dragon will attack physically at
which it is quite proficient. It's major weakness is Death, which it is
vulnerable to; With 50% Magic Evasion, it's difficult to set though. Death
Potions are awesome naturally, but you may not have !Mix or the resources to
toss one at every Crystal Dragon that crosses your path. If you can't set
Death, it's still a Dragon; Apollo's Harp, Dragon Lances and Dragon's Whiskers
really help out. Speaking of Dragon Lances, it's this monster's rare Steal; if
you find yourself lacking them after the Jura Aevis encounters, this is your
only place to find them.

Oh yeah, you can remove their Float status with Dispel, like with the Elm
Gigas. So useless... At least it'll remove the Regen status as well.

Belphegor is not as dangerous as the King Behemoths and Crystal Dragons, but
dangerous nonetheless. They attack physically only, no problem. They're Magic
Beasts, so the Artemis Bow kills them dead; as does Level 5 Death by the way,
they're level 55. They may rarely drop Ice Shields and have rare Rising Suns
if you want more than one. They're not Heavy, destroy them any way you like
(but not Earth-elemental attacks, it heals them).

On this first floor you should have both a single character being able to
summon Odin and another one being able to chuck Death Potions. You'll breeze
through easily on your way to Exdeath.

On the first floor, you'll find yourself in a wide, open space. It's a crystal
island floating in space, but luckily there's breathing possibilities. There's
a chest you can see containing a Fuma Shuriken. Also, a familiar face might
just be resting in the middle of an eldritch warp zone...

Gilgamesh
Level: 59, HP: 37000, MP: 0
Defense: 0, Magic Defense: 35
Evasion: 5%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Genji Shield (common)
Win: Rune Bow (rare)
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Slow
Attacks: Attack

Note: obviously, if you didn't open the Excalipoor chest in Exdeath's Castle
back in the day, Gilgamesh was never banished to the Interdimensional Rift and
he won't be here, nor will he make any other future appearance. This is basic
causality, no need to get worried.

That stat block is merely for curiosity; note that you'll likely never get to
see the Rune Bow drop. Gilgamesh is frightened, and in his panic attacks all
monsters in sight to drive them away. At first, he will not recognize you:

Have at thee, vile beast!
Take this!
Rahhh!

After taking away over 7000 HP, he'll pause for a moment to reflect on his
position and recognize you. He'll blather for a while, then run off to the
exit, into the Dimension Castle. Gilgamesh seems to have no ill intent now that
his master Exdeath has betrayed him by banishing him here.

Before starting his exit speech, you'll want to get his Genji Shield, the only
location for one in this fine game. It's the Shield with the best Defense in
the game and protects against Paralyze and Mini, so it has that going for it.
Note that since Mini doubles Evade%, combining the Mini status with a Genji
Shield will give the character perfect (99%) Evade. Since the Genji Shield
protects against the status, set Mini first (or outside of battle), then
apply Genji Shield.

Note that it's possible to kill Gilgamesh here; you'll have to deal him over
30000 HP damage between two of his turns. An example of accomplishing this
would include Slow, using a Dragon Kiss to set the Dragon nature, then have two
Dragoons Dual-Wielding Dragon Lances use !Jump. You'll get 15 Gil and a rare
Rune Bow for your trouble, and you affect *nothing*; Gilgamesh will still leave
for the exit after the fight is over.

  Second floor:
  35 % Necromancer, Gorgimera
  35 % Gorgimera x2
  23 % Belphegor x2
   6 % Mover x3

Necromancers totally suck. They attack physically half the time, but nobody
cares about that; no, they use an attack called Zombie Powder the other half of
the time, and that's just an unblockable attack that sets Zombie. Not even
Ribbons protect against Zombie, only Angel Rings do. Best to take them out of
the fight ASAP; !Control helps, as does any status ailment as long as you
manage to land it past their Magic Evasion of 50%. They're Undead, so Requiem
really hurts them. The best way to slay them, I find, is Break spellblade
effects since it bypasses the Protect and Shell counters they employ. Apollo's
Harp is another option. They have a rare Bone Mail for you to steal; you can 
do some nice things with a party draped in Bone Mail so getting three extra 
isn't a bad idea if you want to go into the bonus dungeon later. 

Gorgimera attack physically normally, but resort to MT magical attacks when
they're alone. Atomic Ray, Frost and... Electrocute. You remember Electrocute?
From the Octokraken, when you were level 5 or something? Who still uses this.
Gorgimera, this is the FINAL DUNGEON. Focus. Gorgimera is not Heavy and weak to
Water, so Summoners can choose between Odin and Leviathan. Check this; they
have a rare Aegis Shield for you to steal! You want an Aegis Shield on every
character not Dual-Wielding and you likely don't have enough, so take your
chances here.

Movers are where it's at, since they give you 150000 Gil and 199 ABP when you
kill them. They're difficult to take down though; this is not so much a fight
where you brawl for survival, more like a race to see if you can kill them
before they run from you. Movers have 10000 HP, are Heavy and Undead and are
immune to both Petrify and Death. They're weak to Fire-elemental attacks. To
kill them, Requiem, Flame Scrolls, Firaga and the costly Phoenix can really
help out. If you Control one, it'll be able to use Transfusion, killing it
(while restoring a character). Slowga works fine; they don't have a lot of
Magic Evasion and you really want to keep them from acting as long as possible.

If you leave them alone, here's what will happen. Movers don't do anything,
except one of them will use a Delta Attack or a physical attack, and the
formation will switch. The new formation will just be three Movers; 'new'
Movers will have a current HP based on a random Mover alive at the time of the
shift. Bug? Possibly, it certainly seems strange. Anyway, when a Mover gets a
turn now, it'll just terminate the battle; no ABP or Gil for you.

Anyway, where you really wanted !Mix on a character the previous floor, you'll
really appreciate !Sing on this one; Requiem works great versus both
Necromancers and Movers and can set Stop to both Gorgimera and Belfegor while
you wait for Odin to come (or your other characters to kill them with damage).
Since so many nice things can be stolen here, a Thief is a sweet deal; you'll
want to master Thief on all characters anyway for that awesome Agility, and
that 199 ABP Mover formation really helps out in that direction. Equip all the
Angel Rings you have, you'll want to face Necromancers without having to worry
about Zombie Powder. 

The path for you to take is quite obvious. You'll come across another chest
containing yet another Fuma Shuriken, and a chest with an Elixir in it. Notice
how you pass a root on your way? Exdeath's influence can already be seen.

  Third floor:
  35 % Mindflayer, Crystelle x2
  35 % Mindflayer x4
  23 % Crystal Dragon
   6 % Belphegor, Crystelle x2, Mindflayer

Mindflayers are the intelligent demons with an appetite for minds, which they
extract with Mind Blast. Their hearts must be blacker than black for them to
only live here. They're very annoying to kill, since they have no elemental
weaknesses and are Heavy. They have no status immunities, but a Magic Evasion
of 66%, which is quite high. Break Spellblade effects + !Bladeblitz takes them
all out, but I dunno if you have it. They'll randomly attack with physical
violence or Mind Blast and will counter any damage done with a 66% shot at Mind
Blast. Mind Blast is Reflectable, so if the Paralyze is getting you down,
Carbuncle can help out. The Genji Shield, Genji Gloves and Hermes Sandals make
a character immune to Paralyze, so those help out.

Intermezzo: we are later told that the Mindflayer's magical strength is nothing
to make light of. Not terribly inclined to respect authority of any kind, here
is a list of magical power jokes and insults:

"Hwah! You tentacle-faced losers couldn't Mind Blast your way out of a paper
bag filled with magic!"

"I'll have you know I've got half a mind to stab you right in the tentacle!
Unrelated query; could I have the other half back?"

"Mind, your own business", a support group for hapless Mindflayer victims.

"Fighting these fiends is a no-brainer!"

"Don't hate the Flayer, hate the game!"

We will now return to our normal schedule.

Crystelle is a sentient piece of the landscape. I guess, I dunno. It absorbs
all elements, has an Evasion of 50% and a Magic Evasion of 30%, has 50 Defense
but 0 Magic Defense. It also has 3 HP. Goblin Punch, Sylph, !Aim, it's easy.
You can Catch one for it to use Mighty Guard upon Release, but Blue Mages can't
learn anything from Released monsters so that's just interesting for when
you're doing a challenge of some sort.

On this floor, Mindflayers are your biggest conern; boosted Syldra and
!Zeninage are quite adept at taking them out. Summoners are also great versus
the Crystelles; Sylph makes short work of them while healing you a bit as a
fringe benefit. Any person with !Mix can help against the Crystal Dragons that
re-appear on this floor.

This next floor has you pass a stairway leading down to a chest. This is where
Shinryu has its lair, a dragon too powerful even for the Ancients with the
Legendary Weapons to subdue. It was sealed here ages ago, and now guards a
chest with the Ragnarok, a sword more powerful than even Excalibur. I do not
talk about him now, rather would have you best him at a later date; if you want
to grapple with the God-Dragon now, here's your destiny:

[SHINRYU-LINK]

Continue up above to find a chest with... a Fuma Shuriken! Press on, ever on,
to the nearest warp zone. This is a straightforward part of the game, lemme
tell you. Near the chest, there is a branch of a great tree...

  Fourth floor:
  35 % Crystelle, Necromancer, Mindflayer
  35 % Gorgimera, King Behemoth
  23 % Belphegor, Crystelle x2, Mindflayer
   6 % Mover x3

Here, those with !Sing can Confuse the Mindflayers and seriously harm the
Necromancers and Movers; those with !Summon can summon Odin to kill Gorgimeras
and King Behemoths as well as destroy Crystelles. Break spellblade effects can
be used versus all enemies except the Movers and the Crystelles. 

Roots are intertwined throughout the crystal, and you are walking to the source
of this overgrowth... to the left of of this room is a bright green light,
which is guarded by the most powerful and last surviving member of the Eleven
of the Rift; the immortal, Necrophobe... Send a Thief.

Necrophobe
Level: 66, HP: 44044, MP: 10000
Defense: 50, Magic Defense: 50
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 75%
Steal: Thief's Gloves (rare), Elixir (common)
Win: Luminous Robe (rare)
Weakness: Fire, Ice, Lightning, Poison, Wind, Earth, Water, Holy
Status: Invulnerable
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Vacuum Wave
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5, Adds Sap
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Vacuum Wave, Death, Hurricane

Barrier (x4)
Level: 44, HP: 8800, MP: 300
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Reflect Ring (rare), Hi-Potion (common)
Nullifies: Earth
Status: Reflect (always)
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Death, Petrify, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Firaga, Blizzaga, Thundaga, Flare, Holy

Necrophobe is an invincible target. He'll never take damage or any effect from
anything, and you cannot target him manually. Any attack that will randomly
select a target will also target Necrophobe, but it will never do anything.
Things that randomly target an enemy include:

!Rapid Fire
!Release
!Animals
!Gaia
!Call
!Oath
 Berserked characters
 The Meteor spell
 Reflected spells

Any of these attacks may randomly target Necrophobe and thus have no effect at
all. MT effects will always include Necrophobe, but will have no effect on
Necrophobe. Okay, I think we understand each other on the subject :p

You'll have to deal with the Barriers that make Necrophobe invincible. They are
Heavy and have no elemental weakness, but vulnerable to both Death and Petrify.
Summoning Catoblepas (possibly twice with !Dualcast), Chaos Cannon, Break
Spellblade effects plus !Rapid Fire and Death Potions are all perfectly usable
ways of inflicting either Death or Petrify without having to worry about
Reflect. Of course, 8800 HP isn't that much if you don't want to worry about
setting status ailments; a few Thunderstorms from Syldra, a !Zeninage if you
must, and they're gone as well.

In the meantime, the Barriers will cast Flare and Holy spells at each other;
they'll hit you for around 1000 damage. There are four of these spells coming
your way without having time to heal in between, so that wave is going to hurt.
Mighty Guard cuts the damage in half, see if you can get it up before it's too
late (which is, coincidentally, the same thing your girlfriend demanded last
night, pa-dum tsss). Every even turn, they MT one of the Black -aga spells,
which sends four half-powered versions of that spell to random party members.
Looks exciting, but probably bad for your health.

When the Barriers are gone, Necrophobe will remain invulnerable until he starts
talking about now he's really mad and you're going to regret this, at which
point Necrophobe himself starts attacking, starting with a Flash. Necrophobe
attacks twice every turn, with powerful physicals or !Vacuum Wave, which also
sets Sap along with even more physical pain. Necrophobe may rarely use
Hurricane to drop a character down on his or her knees, and very rarely a Death
spell may appear. It should be no surprise that the Protect and Image status
and Golem's Earthen Wall are a great help in this part of the battle.

   iOS/Android: Necrophobe will use Hurricane on all four members of your 
   party in this version, making it far more dangerous. 

In the meantime, Necrophobe is open to your violence and theft; a rare Thief's
Gloves could be nice. He's weak to all elements! Holy spells, high elemental
Spellblade effects, -aga Black spells, Syldra or Leviathan, it's all very, very
powerful. Note that you'll want to chip away no more than 9999 HP every attack,
since when Necrophobe takes damage and is at 9999 HP or below, you'll possibly
gain the help of an enemy turned friend...

Gilgamesh
Level: 93, HP: 55000, MP: 60000
Defense: 35, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 30%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Genji Armor (common)
Creature: Heavy, Humanoid
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None

Few relevant stats, as you can see. If you skipped the Excalipoor chest in
Exdeath's castle all those moons ago, he obviously won't be here now and you'll
have to reduce Necrophobe's HP down to 0 just like any other battle. If not,
here he is... As soon as Gilgamesh appears, Necrophobe becomes invulnerable
again; a clear sign that this is Gilgamesh' battle, not yours anymore. Do know
that this is your small window of stealing the only Genji Armor in the game;
don't pass it up. Necrophobe will attack Gilgamesh twice before deciding Flare
might be the best way to finish him off; at which point, Gilgamesh will
retaliate with a glorious sacrifice.

Note: There have been reports about Gilgamesh not showing up even when all the
known conditions are met. At this point, I have not been able to verify this or
discover the cause, if in fact present at all. Information or save states are
greatly appreciated. We live in the interactive age, after all. Write your own
chapter in Djibriel's walkthrough today!

The Genji Armor is the most physically resilient Heavy armor in the original
SNES game, protecting against Confuse and Toad to boot. A sweet deal, and the
final part of your steadily growing Genji set.

When all is done, you find the last Save Point of the game. From now on, it's
simply a straight march to our destination; Exdeath.

With Movers as the rare encounter here and the mass amounts of ABP to be found
here, this is the place to, y'know, what do you youngest call it? Grind, farm,
'max it up', really 'get into it', etcetera. At some point in the future, you
really have everything you want for your characters; they needn't get that
elusive Three Stars above their head as a Freelancer, but mastering Thief, Monk
and Oracle maximizes stats. !Rapid Fire, !Spellblade level 6 and Dual-Wield are
great for all physically inclined characters; mastering !White, !Black, !Time,
!Summon and !Blue are great for all arcane specialists, and make sure to reach
!Dualcast for maximum potential. Whenever you load Quicksave data, the second
battle you'll see will be the Mover formations; you'll be masterin' Jobs like
someone really adept at masterin' Jobs.

If you're a bit lazier, I find that casters get away nicely with mastering
the Berserker and Bard for Strength/Stamina and Agility. The stats are not
optimal, but the ABP investment is less steep. Physically inclined characters
will like Monk and Thief, but can get away easily with something like Blue
Mage if you must give them a respectable Magic Power. 

For a more in-depth analysis, please check out [FREELANCER-LINK]

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.52.1 Facing the Void
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Exdeath (#313), Neo Exdeath (#314)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Dragon Lance (rare Neo Exdeath steal), Murakumo (rare Neo Exdeath steal),
  Ragnarok (rare Neo Exdeath steal)

It was over thirty years ago that a tree used to seal countless evil spirits
gained self-awareness. This composite soul terrorized an alien world until four
brave man, known as the warriors of Dawn, chased the vile creature to our
peaceful world. Once there, it could not be destroyed, but was sealed with the
power of the Crystals, the four elemental pillars of the world. They were the
fundament of all life, but an unthinkable four-fold cataclysm happened, and the
creature that made himself known as Exdeath escaped to return to its world of
origin. It developed a plan to gain control over the ultimate power to exact
its dark judgment on all its enemies. It was to be a successful plan. But it is
the fate of the world that warriors stand up in the face of destruction time
and again; the Ancients versus Enuo, the warriors of Dawn thirty years ago and
now you, here, in the Interdimensional Rift.

When you approach, the prelude to this final chapter takes place. Castle Bal,
Faris' pirate crew and their hideout, Coco, Cid 'nd Mid and the Catapult are
all sucked into the Void, effectively removing all allies you had back at
Planet R. Exdeath traps you into the Void as well, but unexpected help arrives.

When it is over, you are free to customize your character for the final
confrontation with Exdeath. You could also leave Exdeath now, travel back to
the eldritch warp point that connects the Last Floor to the Dimensional Castle
and Teleport out of the Interdimensional Rift. In doing so, something funky
happens:

Space warps and distorts...
Time climbs upward...

And you are delivered to a time period just before Exdeath's final wave of
onslaught. Bal Castle, the Pirate Hideout and the Catapult are all still
there, and if you return to Exdeath he'll make his speech again. Anyway, it's
time for that final showdown.

Freelancers and Mimes are likely what you want, as ABP gain doesn't matter
anymore, and these two Jobs (likely) have awesome stats, great equipment
options and (likely) a few useful inherent abilities. If not, Summoners, White,
Time and Blue Mages, Mystic Knigths, Ninjas and Samurai make the best base
classes due to useful inherent action abilities.

Ribbons are a must. Exdeath will throw around a large array of status ailments,
so Ribbons are great. Favor Magic Defense over Defense; Aegis Shields are
incredibly awesome and are to be applied unless Dual-Wield is very important to
the set-up of your character. !Blue, !Mix and especially !Sing are very awesome
support abilities for buffing; !Summon, !Spellblade and !Combine are very
potent offensive capabilities.

Exdeath
Level: 77, HP: 49001, MP: 30000
Defense: 35, Magic Defense: 25
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 15%
Steal: Wonder Wand (rare), Phoenix Down (common)
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Slow
Can't Evade: Aerial
Attacks: Attack, Flare, Holy, Meteor, Doom, White Hole

THIS is the Entropic Adversary's true form; its humanoid form was always a
shell, a mask. It seems that the power of the Void is something that's not
quickly harnessed; Exdeath is as of yet incapable of using it in a fast-paced
battle.

Exdeath will use but two attacks; a physical attack and White Hole, a single-
target magical attack that sets both Death and Petrify to a single character.
Characters that have protection from either status ailment nullifies the entire
attack; that means those with Ribbons and Aegis Shields are safe, but also
those equipped with Bone Mail. With !Mix, you can put some Holy Water with some
Phoenix Down to create a Lifeshield, that grants the affected character
immunity from Death-setting attacks, including White Hole. Since White Holy
takes 99 MP to cast, destroying Exdeath's pool of MP by means of Dark Ethers
(Mix some Ether + Dark Matter) and Lilith's Kisses (Mix Ether with a Maiden's
Kiss) can eventually put a stop to White Hole forever and also stop the
damaging spells Exdeath will start casting as the fight continuous).

This is the perfect moment for you to buff yourself to the skies; physical
attacks are quite powerful but easily nullified with Blink spells, Golem's
Earthen Wall and Mighty Guard. White Hole shouldn't have any effect if you
listened to my advice; if White Hole does manage to affect a character, the
two-turn revival process is admittedly bothersome. Use Lifeshield to protect
against White Hole if you did send a character without proper protection up
there.

!Blue gives you Mighty Guard, the ability to take only half damage from both
physical and magical attacks, while giving the characters vulnerable to White
Hole increased odds to avoid the attack. This is extremely helpful. !Sing gives
you the ability to set Regen on all those not equipped with a Protect Ring;
Hero's Rime increases your level over time, greatly increasing your offensive
power; Mighty March isn't normally so great, but with Stamina pumped like
awesome it'll heal about 300 HP every time; not bad at all. !Mix gives you the
ability to raise your level through Dragon Power (Potion + Dragon's Fang), mix
up your own Goliath Tonic (Elixir + Dragon's Fang) to double your HP. Elemental
Power (Eye Drops + Holy Water) is great to set on those that can use !Combine,
!Black or !Summon; normally you'd want to use weapons that boost elements, but
if you know you'll take care of that within the battle, that opens up the
possibility to equip a weapon such as the Defender, Sasuke's Katana, Enhancer
or Man-Eater; weapons that provide passive benefits that don't include
elemental boosts.

Since Exdeath has no elemental weakness but also close to no Defense or Magic
Defense, you can simply dive into your strongest attacks. !Rapid Fire,
especially when combined with Flare Spellblade effects and/or Dual-Wield, is
especially powerful. Note that the Man-Eater deals critical damage to Exdeath,
but cannot be enchanted with Spellblade effects. With !Dualcast, you can cast
two spells simultaneously; post-Elemental Power Leviathan summoning is most
powerful; Meteor strikes four times and is independent from your level; the
higher your level is (or boosted) the likelier it is that Meteor does less
damage than a single 'normal' spell. Exdeath cannot avoid Aerial attacks, so
Whips, Bows, the Rising Sun and Thor Hammer will never miss. You know, it's a
tree. You miss trees, you did a bad thing trying out for this whole world-
saving business.

When Exdeath starts taking damage and is pushed beyond 30000 HP left, it will
resort to the raw power of the Black and White school of magic; Flare and Holy
will start making appearances. Both are extremely powerful; they'll deal around
2300 damage, which is probably enough to one-hit kill any character not
protected by the Shell or Reflect status. In his final 10000 HP, it'll start
casting Meteor; this is easily its most dangerous attack, especially versus
those with low Magic Defense. 

And then, after 49001 HP, Exdeath loses control. Like Enuo before it, when
faced with the warriors with the Legendary Weapons, the Void turns against
those who foolishly attempts to control the uncontrollable, and it envelops
Exdeath...











           ...










                                                   ...










                          ...










                                                I am Neo Exdeath!

        All memories... dimensions... existence...

                     All that is shall be returned to nothing.

                                          Then I, too, can disappear...

                ...forever!!!







Neo Exdeath (Vacuum)
Level: 81, HP: 50000, MP: 65000
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 25
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 76%
Steal: Murakumo (rare)
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Vacuum Wave
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Vacuum Wave, Comet, Meteor, Malestrom, Almagest

Neo Exdeath (Dragon)
Level: 83, HP: 55000, MP: 65000
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 75%
Steal: Dragon Lance (rare)
Creature: Dragon, Heavy
Special Technique: !Vacuum Wave
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Paralyze, Silence, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Vacuum Wave, Dispel, Comet, Meteor, Maelstrom, Grand Cross,
  Almagest

Neo Exdeath (Magic Beast)
Level: 67, HP: 55000, MP: 65000
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 19
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 80%
Steal: Fuma Shuriken (rare)
Creature: Magic Beast, Heavy
Special Technique: !Vacuum Wave
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Petrify, Darkness, Old, Silence, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Vacuum wave, Comet, Meteor, Maelstrom, Almagest

Neo Exdeath (Humanoid)
Level: 86, HP: 60000, MP: 65000
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 10%, Magic Evasion: 66%
Steal: Ragnarok (rare)
Creature: Humanoid
Special Technique: !Vacuum Wave
Special Technique Effect: Attack x 1.5
Vulnerable to: Poison, Darkness, Silence, Slow, Stop
Attacks: Attack, !Vacuum Wave, Firaga, Blizzaga, Thundaga, Flare, Holy, Dispel,
  Comet, Meteor, Aeroga, Delta Attack, Maelstrom, Almagest

The abomination that calls itself Neo Exdeath has no place in this world; but
what the hell is it? It seems to be a combination of all that was sealed in the
Void at some point; evil creatures, dragons, seductive succubi, warlocks, all
driven to fulfill the philosophy of the Void, if any; all must become none. And
so we become complete, for the five great elemental manifestations are Wind,
Water, Earth, Fire and Void...

Neo Exdeath is composed out of four targets, which you can think of as
completely separate entities. Though some sprite-related tricks have been
accomplished to make it seen this is a single composite being, all four targets
have different stats, different attacks and different weaknesses to exploit.
All four targets are rather slow and have big gaps in their AI script where
they do nothing, so they won't take as many turns as most creatures, nor will
they act on every turn that's presented to them; when they do act, though, they
have the capacity for great destruction. When only a single target is left out
of the four, that target will assume the consciousness of the other three
targets and continuously attack with most of the powerful spells available to
the four targets as a whole.

The front target points to the front-most and largest creature, that of the
muscular man with the red horns and the painted face. This creature is the only
one out of the four targets without a specific nature, and since it is the one
most fond of using physical attacks including !Vacuum Wave, I have dubbed it
(Vacuum). It will use physical attacks only normally until it dies or is the
only one left, but I'll talk about Neo Exdeath's desperation attack after
discussing all four parts. (Vacuum) is vulnerable to Slow and Darkness mainly
(Stop doesn't last long, Silence doesn't hinder him); Slow is best set with
Slow Cannon from !Combine; Darkness is best set with the unblockable Dark Sigh
(Eye Drops + Dragon Fang). After a successful Dark Spark spell, it'll becomes
vulnerable to Level 5 Death as well; but getting Dark Spark to work on a level
81 target with 76% Magic Evasion is nigh-undoable.

   iOS/Android: Dark Sigh is no longer unblockable, but if you produce a Dark
   Cannon attack (Blitzshot + Ash), you'll have a flat 75% chance of setting 
   the ailment versus all targets alive. 

Behind (Vacuum) is (Dragon); the pointer here indicates the snarling red
demon's face on a coiled body. This creature is the one responsible for the
lines "The laws of the universe mean nothing!" and the Grand Cross attack.
Grand Cross inflicts one out of 18 effects: it can inflict Death, Petrify,
Toad, Mini, Poison, Zombie, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk,
Silence, Stop, Slow, Doom, Sap or reduce a target's HP down to a single digit
(but not when the target is Heavy). Stop has a twice as big a chance of being
set as any of the other 16 effects. The Ribbon stops most of the more dangerous
ones, including Death, Petrify, Toad and Berserk; there's still plenty of nasty
stuff to be set. If Grand Cross fails to set a randomly select status ailment,
it won't try to set something else; you'll often see Grand Cross do nothing on
characters sufficiently protected by Ribbons or Genji gear. Besides Grand Cross
(Dragon) may also use Dispel very rarely as well as Meteor, which just sucks.
Meteor doesn't make an appearance before (Dragon) is brought down to 15000 HP
or below though. The Dragon's Whisker, Dragon Lance and !Combine's Dragon
Cannon are all quite powerful versus this specific target, as is the Apollo's
Harp.

Far in the back row, hiding below where the marker indicates a human skeleton,
is (Human), the spellcaster of the four. Whenever a powerful spell is seen on-
screen, you have this guy to blame for it. It may use any of the powerful
spells from !Black, !White and !Blue, but also Delta Attack to set Petrify;
where all other monsters needed two other casters to perform this thing,
(Human) can do it whenever it isn't alone, regardless of surviving allies.
(Human) is quite notorious for being NOT Heavy, opening it up to all kinds of
silly shenanigans. !Flirt, !Iainuki, Odin's Zantetsuken, Antilixir, it all
works (provided it gets past the impressive Magic Evasion). Odin won't normally
use Zantetsuken since there are other, Heavy targets on the field; from the
Magic Lamp though, he will. Odin will appear to affect the entire thing, but
the remaining three targets will pull Neo Exdeath back together. Another
especially humorous attack here is Banish, which may work; you will, while
fighting in the Interdimensional Rift, throw a part of a solid behemoth of
creatures into the Rift. It makes no sense! Anyway, Odin from the Magic Lamp is
really the only unblockable attack that destroys non-Heavy targets you have;
Doom from !Blue or !Condemn will put an unblockable timer there. Sure, it'll
take a while, but it WILL kill. And hey... a use for !Predict of all things!

(Magic Beast) is the last and most dangerous of the four targets, as this is
the one that can use Almagest. The pointer here leads to an undead ram-like
creature, grinning like an idiot. Almagest is a multi-target Holy-elemental
attack that also sets Sap; it will deal around 1800 damage to all characters,
assuming no Shell status or them blocking the attack with an Aegis Shield. This
is by far the most powerful attack Neo Exdeath has; take care with it. Since
it's a Magic Beast, the Artemis Bow and the Beast Killer Whip deal double
damage, but that's a triviality; (Magic Beast) is vulnerable to the Petrify
status ailment! This means that it can be taken out of the fight in a single
attack, but setting Petrify is, as always, tricky business when the target has
such a high level and Magic Evasion. Catoblepas is more accurate than Break,
but master is always application of Break Spellblade effects, then sticking the
affected blade into the smiling creature's gullet.

At some point, you will have reduced these four targets down to a single
target. Out of murderous desperation, Neo Exdeath will use this target as a
conduit for all its power; all AI scripts for all four targets are the same
when it's alone. It will take two actions on each turn, and each can be a Comet
or Meteor spell, Attack or !Vacuum Wave, a Maelstrom attack or Almagest.
Luckily he'll always use Maelstrom as a second attack out of two turns.

So, destroy destruction itself! (Magic Beast) must be the first to go, since
Almagest is so dangerous. Apply Break to your blade, then swing it; Catoblepas
and Break spells will have a chance of hitting if you lack !Spellblade. Then,
destroy (Human) with Odin, an Antilixir (Elixir + Dark Matter) or Doom. If you
have !Mix, (Eye Drops + Dragon Fang) Dark Sigh helps against (Vacuum); if you
don't have it, don't bother. Properly gimped, it is time to inflict damage upon
the creature. Since Neo Exdeath becomes so much more frightening once it only
has a single target left, it is best to divide the damage across (Dragon) and
(Vacuum) evenly; MT attacks are best. Slow Cannon can help in reducing the
amount of attacks coming your way; Slowga has a lesser chance of hitting but is
an acceptable substitute. If your team is mainly geared towards single-target
attacks or is, due to !Rapid Fire and Meteor spells, not really suitable to aim
its violence, (Dragon) is much more dangerous than (Vacuum) so that evil red
unicorn must die first.

The fight with Neo Exdeath can definitely one of the toughest fights this game
has to offer, but since you have so much time to prepare you should be well-
guarded, buffed left and right and ultimately suited to destroy the bane of all
existence. From two Goblins to this monstrosity, Wind's Quest has brought Bartz
far...

When the gruesome battle is over, you are free to watch the cutscenes. If any
of the character was Dead, Petrified or a Zombie at the end of the fight, they
will lack the strength to left the Void by themselves, and they will be absent
from the period of time narrated by whoever is the narrator. Krile will be
the narrator when everbody made it out alive, Bartz will be the narrator if any
one of the girls has fallen, and Lenna will be the narrator when Bartz was
left behind. Faris is almost never the narrator, likely because she can neither
read nor write. Yar!







                                      Ygg
                                       d
                                       r
                                       a
                                       s
                                       i
                                       l

                     What miracle is this? This giant tree.
                        It stands ten thousand feet high
                 But doesn't reach the ground. Still it stands.
                          Its roots must hold the sky.



                                       O



You have become the one that is the victorious person. Everybody is happy for
you. Life, however, goes on. Moments of bliss are fleeting and temporary. In 
the next chapters, I will first describe two optional superbosses and how to 
kill two other 'enemies' that were not meant to be killed. Later, I will start 
talking about the Sealed Temple and the Cloister of the Dead, the bonus content
they added for the GBA and iOS/Android games. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.53.1  The Undeathables; Famed Mimic Gogo
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Famed Mimic Gogo

  Miscellaneous items:
  Gold Hairpin (rare Famed Mimic Gogo steal)

Between what once was the very end of the game and all the bonus material, I
would like to take a minute to tell you about the four creatures so difficult
to defeat, they are simply harder than Neo Exdeath. Omega and Shinryu are the
easier of the four, while Magic Pot and Famed Mimic Gogo were simply never
created to be defeated in the realm of combat. Strangely, it seems that the
game designers adhered to the concept that not all problems can be solved
through violence. This, as I'll demonstrate, is an urban myth.

In Carwen, some cross-dressing thing fled from your gaze after transforming into
YOU. That ain't cool. Normal people would have followed the person earlier, 
would have done nothing for a while, then got the Mime shard and continued 
playing. Normal people, who probably have loads of friends, play an instrument,
got a special someone. BUT WE'RE NOT NORMAL PEOPLE. THIS THING WILL DIE NOW 
BECAUSE WE'RE SPECIAL.

[GOGO-LINK]

Famed Mimic Gogo
Level: 77, HP: 47714, MP: 60000
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 20
Evasion: 30%, Magic Evasion: 99%
Steal: Gold Hairpin (rare), Leather Armor (common)
Win: Tiger Mask (rare)
Nullifies: Water
Creature: Humanoid, Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, (Strong) Attack, Holy, Flare, Meteor,
  Maelstrom, Ice Storm, Aqua Breath, Frost

Famed Mimic Gogo, for all his outlandish attire and speech, is one of the most
difficult opponents in the game. If you provoke it with a physical attack
(including !Steal), it may either counter with a normal physical, !Critical
Attack or (Strong) Attack, which will kill a character. If you use a spell on 
it, even if it is beneficial, Gogo will counter with either a Holy, Flare or 
Meteor spell, which are all very powerful.

If you deal 14714 damage to Gogo and survive to see it, it will become strongly
agitated. "You uncultured boors! Know you nothing of an artist's soul? Cut!
Cut! Stop TRYING to mimic! Start over, recenter, and begin!" Then, it will cast
Meteor thrice in a row and kill you with powerful attacks. You are not equipped
to handle this fight at all right now, so this is a Game Over for you.

There is another thing to consider, and that is the fact that this fight is
bugged. When Gogo starts the Uncultured Boors speech, it'll lapse into saying
that and cast Meteor, which is good. Well, not good, but that's the way it was
meant to be. Then, it'll say it again! And cast another Meteor. Then a third
Meteor, will all kinds of useless speech at the end that's not meant to be
there:

Dragged into another dimension!
Odin: All right, that's far enough!
Turning to stone...
Can't escape!
Countdown to Pestilence...4
KO'd!
Countdown to Eruption...5
KO'd!
Level halved!
KO'd!

Next two turns are 'normal' in that they do what they're meant to do: a
consecutive Maelstrom, Ice Storm and Aqua Breath combo, followed that next turn
by a consecutive Frost, Ice Storm and Aqua Breath combo. This sounds nasty, but
you need to realize that by this point you have either killed Famed Mimic Gogo
already or have failed. After these attacks, FMG will try another Meteor, but
it'll be followed by all the garbled text. Loop from there.

   iOS/Android: They fixed the bug here. FMG will cast three Meteor spells in
   a row, after which it use Maelstrom, Ice Storm and Aqua Breath. The third 
   turn will feature Flame, Ice Storm and Aqua Breath. It makes little 
   difference.

See, the trick here is to defeat Famed Mimic Gogo really quickly and brutally.
The fatal commands must have been given to the character and unstoppable in
nature when you do actually see the 'uncultured boors' speech in the first
place. Options to kill the Famed Mimic include:

- Get a single character with !Rapid Fire, !Spellblade 6 and two of your most
 powerful enchantable blades in the game. Enter the fight and start buffing
 that character with Dragon Potions (Mix a Potion with a Dragon Fang) to boost
 his level. If you deal around 6000 damage per strike with a Flared Up Rapid
 Fire Attack, you got the fiend.

- Use only attacks that circumvent counters! This is taking advantage of bugs,
 but if it works for you, it works for you. 3 Reflected character + one
 character to absorb, then cast the appropriate spell (Firaga or Blizzaga) on
 yourself. Chaos Cannon (Combine Blitzshot with Dark Matter) also doesn't
 provoke counters.

- Mix a Dragon Kiss (Dragon Fang + Maiden's Kiss) to set the Dragon nature to
 Famed Mimic Gogo. Now, have five Dragon Lances and use !Jump with them. At
 least one will have to Dual-Wield. The Dragon Lance will deal 9999 a hit,
 killing Famed Mimic Gogo on the fifth one.

If you really have no shame, Famed Mimic Gogo has a rare Gold Hairpin; if you
must have it, you can cast Return until you get it; note that the Return spell
doesn't Return your drown timer.

If you win, you get the Mime Job!

[MIME-LINK]

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.53.2  The Undeathables; Magic Pot
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Ankheg (#184), Ammonite (#185), Landcrawler (#186), Lemure (#187), Partenhope
  (#188), Cherie (#189), Kuza Beast (x) (-), Soul Cannon (x) (-), Liquid Flame
  (x) (-), Bandercoeurl (x) (-), Magic Pot (#190)

  Miscellaneous items:
  Defender (rare Landcrawler steal), Reflect Ring (common Lemure steal, rare
  Parthenope drop), Ribbon (rare Lemure steal), Rainbow Dress (common Parthenope
  steal), Coral Ring (rare Parthenope steal), Hermes Sandals (rare Cherie drop),
  Red Slippers (common Cherie steal), Elven Cape (rare Cherie steal), Protect
  Ring (rare Soul Cannon (x) steal)

  Blue spells:
  1000 Needles, Pond's Chorus, Roulette, Flash, Aeroga, Lilliputian Lyric,
  Time Slip, ???

The above block of text is identical to the one used for the Phoenix Tower on
your first run; obviously most of the container contents have likely been taken
by this point. Only a single Phoenix Down or Aevis Killer is hidden beneath
that most impish of encounters, the Magic Pot. Truly a crazy, crazy gimmick
fight, it is not even meant to give you a Game Over if you piss it off (as was
the case with the Famed Mimic). Attacking the Magic Pot is like bashing your
head against a wall, made of titanium, itself backed up by other walls made of
titanium that are cheering it on not to give up. Underwater. Well, you get the
idea. But have no fear, I'll help you. I'm from the Netherlands, we're experts
on 'Magic Pot'. 

If you left one alone, now's the time to kill it, for it CAN be done! Search
out the Black Chocobo you tamed, and fly it to the forests to the east of the
great desert between North Mountain and the Phoenix Tower. Descend the Chocobo,
walk over to the Phoenix Tower, and start climbing to the vase you left the
Magic Pot in.

[POT-LINK]

Magic Pot
Level: 91, HP: 65255, MP: 50000
Defense: 255, Magic Defense: 255
Evasion: 95%, Magic Evasion: 99%
Steal: Hi-Potion (rare)
Win: Elixir (rare)
Status: Protect, Shell
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Slow
Attacks: (full heal)

Here's the thing. The battle starts with Mute set, so !Black, !White, !Time,
!Blue (unlike in normal Mute, where Blue spells still work), !Sing and
!Spellblade are out. Things that do work are !Condemn, !Predict, spells cast by
using an item (such as Masamune's Haste or Fire Rod's Firaga), !Call, the Magic
Lamp and all Bells; as far as the Diamond Bell and Tinklebell go, that's
definitely an inconsistency. Apollo's Harp also works.

Magic Pot uses (full heal) every turn; it shares an animation with the Elixir,
and fully heals the Magic Pot back to 65255 HP. Magic Pot has ridiculous
Defense, Magic Defense, perfect Evasion and Magic Evasion, a level of 91 and is
weak to no elements or status ailments. It is the perfect roadblock of a
battle.

Mute is set, so the characters can't speak, sing or chant; but if nothing can
come out, stuff can still go in! Increasing the level of a single character is
the key to Magic Pot's defeat. !Sing can't be used, so Hero's Rime is out;
!Mix Potions or Hi-Potions with a Dragon Fang to create a brew called Dragon
Power, which increases the character's level by 20. With a one or two
Dual-Wield !Rapid Fire attacks between its turns, this thing must go down.
Since both Slow and Haste can be set during the battle, you can get in more
than just a single attack.

Now, for the specifics! Obviously, Dual-Wield !Rapid Fire is a must. !Rapid
Fire allows us to always hit and pierce Defense. Sadly, Protect is still up,
and we can't cast Dispel to remove it. Using the Judgment Staff as an item gets
the Job done, and the Wonder Wand can even cast Dispel if you don't have a
Judgment Staff and are reluctant to fight Istory Lythos creatures for one.

With Protect down, it's time to start buffing. Keep creating Dragon Power and
stack them up on your designated kill machine. Using the Masamune in-battle
lets you set Haste to the character. You can also set Slow to the Magic Pot;
while theoretically you could, dunno, Release a Gloom Widow to use a Web
attack, the chances it'll hit are astronomically small. No, you'll want to
!Combine some gunpowder with a Turtle Shell for a clean 75% shot at setting
Slow.

With Magic Pot Slowed and unProtected, you're pretty much done; use that one or
two !Rapid Fire and you're done! An alternate strategy has you set the Dragon
nature through Dragon Kiss and have your superwarrior wield two Dragon Lances
or a Dragon Lance and a Dragon's Whisker. Every connecting attack with these
weapons will deal twice as much damage; you'll hardly need to boost your level
if you have these weapons preset. Apollo's Harp and Dragon Cannon deal some
damage if you're short on it, but you shouldn't be.

Congratulations are in order; you've accomplished nothing you couldn't have
done by simply feeding the guy. It's like you beat up the homeless man that
always hangs around the mall just so you can tell your friends you could, like,
totally do it. Man, you're so punk, Avril Lavigne called me to get her your
number. She wants to make out with you for hours and hours.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.53.3  The Undeathables; Omega
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Drippy (#100), Lycaon (#101), Poison Eagle (#103), Zombie Dragon (#104),
  Metamorph (#114), Orukat (#211), Great Dragon (#212), Achelon (#213),
  Golem (#271), Omega (#311)

  Miscellaneous items: Dark Matter (common Orukat steal), Dragon Fang (common
  Great Dragon steal, rare Great Dragon drop), Turtle Shell (common Achelon
  steal), Staff of Light (rare Metamorph drop), Omega Medal (guaranteed Omega
  drop)

  Summon spells:
  Golem

  Blue spells:
  Flame Thrower, Flash, Vampire, Magic Hammer

"The roiling skies let loose a vile beast without a soul; Omega was its name."
- Thousand-year-old book

Omega is not a coincidental weapon of mass destruction; it is as orchestrated
one. Once, we learned that Galuf came from an 'alien' planet; now we know that
the two worlds were one and there is not such thing as alien. Except for the
two creatures that came here from above, the dread machine Omega and the dragon
Shinryu. When the warriors wielding the Twelve Legendary Weapons defeated Enuo,
they were unable to destroy this eldritch machine. But we have a fair shot,
because not only is Omega a walking atom bomb spelling death for all that it
encounters, it is also lonely at night.

[OMEGA-LINK]

Omega
Level: 119, HP: 55530, MP: 60700
Defense: 190, Magic Defense: 150
Evasion: 95%, Magic Evasion: 90%
Win: Omega Medal (always)
Absorbs: Fire, Ice, Poison, Holy, Earth, Wind, Water
Weakness: Lightning
Status: Reflect, Shell, Stop (expires)
Creature: Heavy
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Slow, Stop
Can't Evade: Song
Attacks: Flame Thrower, Atomic Ray, Delta Attack, Blaster, Rainbow Wind,
  Wave Cannon, Maelstrom, Earthquake, Search, Rocket Punch, Mustard Bomb,
  Encircle

Omega is a murder machine, and it was designed to be very good at it. This is
the AI Script Omega was coded with:

- 33% chance of either Atomic Ray, Delta Attack or Blaster
- Wave Cannon
- 33% chance of either Rainbow Wind, Flame Thrower or Atomic Ray
- Wave Cannon
- No interrupt:
  33% chance of either Delta Attack, Blaster or Wave Cannon
  33% chance of either Maelstrom, Earthquake or Rainbow Wind
- Search (save target until end next turn)
- 33% chance of either Rainbow Wind, Flame Thrower or Atomic Ray (on Search
  target)
- Wave Cannon
  (loop)

Counterattack to all HP damage:
- No interrupt:
  Target: Random target
  33% chance of either Rocket Punch, Rocket Punch or Mustard Bomb
  33% chance of either Rocket Punch, Rocket Punch or Encircle

See what I did there? By directly listing the AI Script, I not only displayed
the relevant information in the clearest manner possible, but it also acts as a
reminder of Omega's mechanical nature. Form and Fuction baby, form and
function.

So any attack that deals damage will cause two counter-attacks; Rocket Punch
will set Confuse to all characters without protection against the ailment
(Lamia's Tiara, Rainbow Dress, Genji Helm, Genji Armor, Bone Mail), Mustard Bomb
will kill a character and Encircle will remove a character from the battlefield
for the rest of the fight.

Search will save its target, and Omega will exclusively deal with this target
until the end of its next turn. If Atomic Ray is the next attack, it will only
be fired at the Search target; if any counter-attacks are provoked in the
meantime, they'll all home in on the Search target.

Omega will wait for a small margin of time before starting its onslaught; it'll
start with a Stop status that'll quickly expire. But you can re-set it if you
want! Omega may be the most powerful creation of all, but it has never known
the love of a woman. It KNOWS this. Exploit this weakness in the circuits that
make up his heart with Romeo's Ballad, which stops the eldritch machine in its
tracks. Despite Omega's stellar level and Magic Evasion, Romeo's Ballad will
never miss. Know that the small duration op the Stop status is less than the
time it takes for Omega to reach a new turn, and it's also shorter than the
time a single Hasted character takes to reach a new turn, so a single Hasted
Bard is not enough to keep Omega at bay. Two should do the trick, but Romeo's
Ballad overlaps; if you have both Bards sing righter after each other, Omega
will still get some turns. You'll have to find a flow in which you can spread
out the two timers, but I can't tell you how to do that; you'll have to
experience it.

Omega's got an inherent Shell up, so even barrier-piercing attacks will deal
less damage than you'd expect. Its inherent Reflect barrier stops what probably
is anybody's fight tactics when facing this thing; Thundaga spamming. Sappy
poetry is all well and good, but it will only delay the thing. We need to
destroy it, and that is where !Spellblade comes in. THE solution to the Omega
problem is Thundaga Spellblade paired with Dual-Wield !Rapid Fire. Set Thundaga
Spellblade effects on the sword, unleash !Rapid Fire, win the battle.

A single character can do this. For maximum potency, equip the Omega Slayer
with a Ribbon (protects against Delta Attack), Bone Mail (protects against
Blaster's Death) and a Flame Ring (protects against Atomic Ray and Flame
Thrower). The other three characters will need to keep Omega busy while your
Slayer sets up the Spellblade effect; characters that can Sing Romeo's Ballad
and wear Hermes Sandals are a good idea; White Mages can respond quickly with
Curaga, Arise and Esuna as well, so take your pick there.

When your Slayer is set, unleash !Rapid Fire. You'll kill Omega in a single
turn. Good for you! As they say, it is better to have loved and lost then to
have never loved at all and be killed in a waterfall cave for no clear reason
whatsoever.

Above strategy is not the only one; a party draped in Flame Shields (a rare
steal from Grenades in the Ruins), Ribbons, Bone Mail and Reflect Rings can
withstand most attacks Omega can dish out, and cast Thundaga on the own party
in return; White Wind can heal Bone Mail wearers between the Wave Cannon
attacks and Rocket Punches that will not Confuse, but will damage. This is a
messy, uncertain tactic, but a viable one; Slow Cannon will help out here, as
it's the only way of setting Slow to something with a level of 119 and a Magic
Evasion as high as Omega's. Carbuncle can help out as well; it reflects Delta
Attack, Blaster, Atomic Rays and Search (Search!). Something awesome: if you
Reflect Search to itself, it'll attack itself the next turn :p

You now receive 50000 Gil, 100 ABP and a Badge! Congratulations.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.53.4  The Undeathables; Shinryu
**********************************

  Opponents:
  King Behemoth (#221), Crystal Dragon (#222), Necromancer (#223), Gorgimera
  (#224), Mindflayer (#225), Crystelle (#226), Belphegor (#227), Mover (#228),
  Shinryu (#312)

  Container contents:
  Ragnarok

  Miscellaneous items: Elixir (common Necrophobe steal, common Crystal Dragon
  steal), Blood Sword (rare King Behemoth steal), Dragon Lance (rare Crystal 
  Dragon steal), Bone Mail (rare Necromancer steal), Aegis Shield (rare 
  Gorgimera steal), Main Gauche (rare Mindflayer steal), Rising Sun (rare 
  Belphegor steal), Ice Shield (rare Belphegor drop), Dragon's Whisker (rare 
  Shinryu steal), Dragon Seal (guaranteed Shinryu drop)

  Blue spells:
  ???, Transfusion, Mind Blast, Flash, Roulette, Mighty Guard, Level 2 Old,
  Level 3 Flare

"The dragon Shinryu came upon (Omega's) heels. Not e'en the legendary weapons
twelve were able to subdue these evil beasts. Inside the Rift the demons were
interred; so should they stay until forever's end their names to stay unspoken
evermore."
- Thousand-year-old book

Omega paced back and forth inside its cave, either incapable or unwilling to go
beyond its prison. But a machine is easily confined, a dragon adapts.
Especially God-Kings of dragonkind, those are like wicked smart. So the
Ancients, who could not defeat Shinryu, had to put him in a chest. Y'know, to
seal him away. It's like a mystical chest, hidden away in the darkest corners
of reality. The also put a really good sword in the chest. Some argue that
hiding ancient treasures somewhere along with unspeakable evil is a great way
to let dumb-ass adventurers actively seek out the treasures, releasing the evil
in the process. But what were the Ancients to do? Just let the sword lying
around in some treasure chest NOT guarded by a God-King of Dragons? That's not
how the Ancients roll.

[SHINRYU-LINK]

Shinryu
Level: 97, HP: 55500, MP: 51000
Defense: 60, Magic Defense: 60
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 95%
Steal: Dragon's Whisker (rare), Dragon Fang (common)
Win: Dragon Crest (always)
Absorbs: Holy
Creature: Heavy, Dragon
Special Technique: !Critical
Special Technique Effect: None
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Berserk, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Attack, Roulette, Level 2 Old, Level 3 Flare, Mighty Guard, Ice Storm,
  Atomic Ray, Lightning, Maelstrom, Demon Eye, Poison Breath, Tidal Wave,
  Zombie Breath

Shinryu starts his battles off with a Tidal Wave of enormous magnitude; it
deals over 8000 damage. That means that every character not equipped with a
Coral Ring or in a stroke of luck protected by an Aegis Shield (33 % chance) is
now dead. Tidal Wave - or any other Water-elemental attack - will not make an
appearance for the rest of the battle, so even though you'll want at least two
characters with a Coral Ring, you don't need to have them across the board; as
long as you're prepared to fully revive any character not protected at the
start of the battle. !Summon 5, !White 6 and !Mix grants access to full HP
recovery.

Important note: Shinryu will have to get a turn before it can use Tidal Wave; a
character with a Masamune or sufficient Agility and the Hermes Sandals can
outspeed the God-King of Dragons to do stuff like set Berserk before this wave
comes crashing down. More on Berserk later.

The first turn can mean either Maelstrom, Attack or Roulette. Roulette may kill
a character; Maelstrom can be very dangerous; Shinryu's high level means
Maelstrom is quite accurate and will often hit. Curaga is great way of
countering its effects; Arise can counter Roulette.

The next turn means either Ice Storm, Atomic Ray or Lightning. Lightning ain't
too bad, it's just 25 % maximum HP damage. Those equipped with Coral Rings will
take double damage though; watch out for that. Atomic Ray and Ice Storm are
both really powerful. Atomic Ray will be nullified by Coral Ring characters,
but Ice Storm will kill everybody; Ice Shields can protect against this, as can
Resist Ice potions (Mix a Phoenix Down with some Antidote) or Dragon Shielding
(Mix a Dragon Fang with an Ether); Dragon Shielding also helps against any
Atomic Ray and Lightning attacks Shinryu may unleash at a later instance.

If you're still alive by this point, Shinryu'll get serious. Third turn is a
double-turn; first one is either Maelstrom, Attack or Roulette like it's first
turn, then either Mighty Guard, Level 2 Old or Level 3 Flare. Level 3 Flare
either kills or does nothing; Mighty Guard is a nuisance which you can Dispel
with the spell or the Judgment Staff.

The fourth turn is another double-turn, and the last unique one before Shinryu
loops its AI script. First turn is a 66% shot at Attack or Evil Eye which sets
Stone to a single character, then either 66% Attack or Poison Breath which
deals Poison-elemental damage to all; compared to stuff like Ice Storm, it's
not as nasty, this meaning it doesn't kill you outright. After this fourth
turn, e.a. the second double-turn, it doesn't use Tidal Wave but just picks an
attack out of the first turn again.

When Shinryu hits 20000 HP, it'll let loose with a one-time Zombie Breath
attack. So, y'know, watch out for that 'cause it kills you and turns you into
Zombies.

There are two strategies. You can either Berserk Shinryu; in its rage, it'll be
a far easier target and can either be completely nullified or just be
outmuscled. The Berserk spell is a simply infallible way to enrage the dragon;
calling its father a 'fat, flatulent git' is not quite as effective but twice
as fun. Another strategy is pile up enough super-effective damage quick enough
that Shinryu is dead before he realizes what's going on. Both are popular and
effective, so you can take your pick.

Setting Berserk to Shinryu is easy, as the White Berserk is spell is
unblockable and it lasts forever. The Power Staff can duplicate its effects, as
can the !Mix outcome Bacchus' Cider (Holy Water + Turtle Shell). Now, Shinryu
will unleash a simple physical attack each turn; when it lands, it will kill a
character. If the character charged with setting Berserk is given the Masamune
as a weapon, he or she can move before the Tidal Wave. Golem and Mirage Vests
can combine to grant a lot of missing physicals even before Evasion kicks in.
With !Mix, you can set Darkness with a Dark Sigh (Eye Drops + Dragon Fang),
it'll never miss. Going in with three character who are near-death and a
character with !Guard gives you immunity as well. You could even just keep up
with Shinryu's death count and revive any character that falls. Basically,
Shinryu was dead in the water as soon as Berserk was set; the rest is just
being fancy about it.

   iOS/Android: Again, with Dark Sigh useless your best bets lie with Dark 
   Cannon or the Dark Bow. 

If you want to let Shinryu go about its business like normal, you'll need to be
more careful. Shinryu is a Dragon; an archaic strategy would have you acquire
six Dragon Lances from assorted Crystal Dragons right here in the Void, set
Dual-Wield to three Dragoons and !Jump for joy. This is possible, but not
necessary.

A character with the Quick spell (!Time 6) and Apollo's Harp can deal
comparable damage, since Apollo's Harp is so effective against dragons. Giving
a Quick spell to a Dragoon with a Dragon Lance is also a great idea; you'll
give the Dragoon two !Jump attacks in the time-pocket you create with Quick, so
you'll get the same result without having character disappear from the
battlefield, the Dragoon will still have a Shield, you'll only need a single
Dragon Lance for that character and you're not giving Shinryu time to utterly
annihilate you, as he so often does. So with but a single Dragon Lance, you
already got four extremely powerful hits. Dualcasting Flare, Meteo or Bahamut
is also as effective as usual, since Shinryu lacks a Shell status (unless he
gets Mighty Guard up).

With enough Agility and inherent Haste status, you can have all characters act
before Tidal Wave appears; give Quick to all, and you can take out Shinryu no
problem without Coral Rings at all. A risky venture, but hey, that's us. Danger
is our middle name.

You get a Dragon Seal for your trouble, and a Ragnarok. Following this
walkthrough, you could've stolen Ragnarok swords from Neo Exdeath; this is your
most likely source, though. It's not as good as a fully-powerd Brave Blade, but
doesn't lock you into a no-run game. The Dragon Seal is useless. Hooray!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.54.1  The Sealed Temple; Unlocking
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Nutkin (#6), Blue Dragon (#132), Red Dragon (#133), Yellow Dragon (#134),
  Mecha Head (#150), Chrono Controller (#163), Flaremancer (#164), Vilia (#199),
  Rukh (#201), Sea Devil (#202), Stingray (#203), Grenade (#204), Level Checker
  (#207), Dragon Aevis (#215), Sword Dancer (#216), Death Claw (#217), Fury
  (#218), Yojimbo (#219), Iron Giant (#220), Gorgimera (#224), Mindflayer
  (#225), Crystelle (#226), Belphegor (#227), Mover (#228), Mini Satana (#229),
  Assassin (#230), Soul Eater (#231), Behemoth (#232), Dark Elemental (F)
  (#233), Dark Elemental (I) (#234), Dark Elemental (L) (#235), Exoray (#236),
  Dinozombie (#239), Gil Turtle (#282)

  Container contents:
  Blastshot x 3, Buckshot, Blitzshot x 2, Cottage, Dark Matter x 2, Elixir x 2,
  Ether, Fuma Shuriken, Iron Draft, Mace of Zeus, Power Drink, Turtle Shell,
  Vishnu Vest

  Miscellaneous items:
  Blitz Whip (common Flaremancer steal), Murasame (rare Rukh steal), Defender
  (rare Sea Devil steal), Rune Blade (rare Stingray steal), Dragon's Whisker
  (rare Stingray drop), Flame Shield (rare Grenade steal), Artemis Bow (rare
  Dragon Aevis steal), Enhancer (rare Sword Dancer steal), Thor Hammer (rare
  Death Claw steal), Cursed Ring (rare Fury steal), Reflect Ring (common Fury
  steal), Murakumo (rare Yojimbo steal), Aegis Shield (rare Gorgimera steal),
  Main Gauche (rare Mindflayer steal), Rising Sun (rare Belphegor steal), Ice
  Shield (rare Belphegor drop), Grand Helm (guaranteed Gil Turtle drop)

  Blue spells:
  Doom, Roulette, Level 5 Death, Level 4 Graviga, Level 2 Old, Level 3 Flare,
  Pond's Chorus, Lilliputian Lyric, Death Claw, Aeroga, Flame Thrower, Mind
  Blast, Mighty Guard, Self-Destruct

Hey, kid. Wanna go do some GBA-only bonus content? It's way hard.

As far as items go, I find four Hermes Sandals a must for random encounters.
I would highly recommend using four characters equipped with these Haste-
inducing winged boots; they give inherent Haste and make you look most moxious.
There will be a boss that loves to spam Zombie all up in your face; having
four Angel Rings will be a tremendous help in preventing those Zombie Powder
attacks from having any effect. Since that time-tested combo of !Spellblade
and !Rapid Fire will be called upon a few times, having at least two out of
the Excalibur, 150 Battle Power Brave Blade and a Ragnarok will be a blessing
as it'll give your !Rapid Fire user of choice two very strong weapons to
!Spellblade !Rapid Fire with.

As far as abilities go, things are more difficult. Having Monk/Thief/Oracle
mastered for all four will help everybody survive hits like a champ, move as
fast as they can and perform wizardry with utmost effect. Read Ahead, the
Oracle support ability that sharply reduces random encounter rate will also be
a blessing. You'll run mad, MAD, if you don't have it. Monster encounter rate
is similair to what you've seen so far, but the battles take longer to win
so it becomes a big big hassle to move from one side of the room to the next.
Next up, buffs are very important. Mighty Guard is a must, Hastega is a must,
Golem and Carbuncle are a must. Have all of these things.

A good strategy would be to have a single dual Knightsword Freelancer with
!Rapid Fire and !Spellblade, a single dual Katana Freelancer with !Blue,
!Combine or !Mix (take your pick) and two Mimes with !Dualcast and two
magic spelllists of your choice. Stick a Ribbon on the Freelancers, Gold
Hairpins on your Mimics. You'll get four turns before the enemy even acts;
very few enemies can withstand a focused !Rapid Fire, Zantetsuken or dual
Syldra (whatever applies).

Ready? Super-ready?

Travel to the new boiling Greater Sea Trench. That's your pathway to all that
juicy GBA-only content! You picked up the three new Jobs here earlier, but
couldn't open the other two doors at that time. With the defeat of Neo Exdeath,
it seems nothing really changed. The final fight with Exdeath is located in
a temporal mini-plane that stands outside of reality as we know it. He destroys
towns, and you can still return to them; you kill his ass, he's still alive.
But this pathway was still opened! Push the skeleton button to move the
entire cave to a new, unknown, location. You can no longer move to the
airshupmarine, but you can enter the door to the left. The middle door is
still sealed by the mysterious power of the programmers not wanting you to go
there.

It's a Save Point and then it's you entering the Sealed Temple.

  Sealed Temple:
  35 % Sword Dancer, Fury, Death Claw
  35 % Sword Dancer x 2, Fury
  23 % Grenade x 5
   6 % Dragon Aevis x 2

   iOS/Android: There's different monsters for this first area in the iOS 
   game. I'm not going to do a whole rewrite especially for it, so if you 
   must know what Mini Satanas and Assassins mean for you, Ctrl + F them. 
   
  iOS Sealed Temple:
  35 % Mini Satana
  35 % Assassin (Image)
  23 % Red Dragon, Blue Dragon
   6 % Assassin, Assassin (Image)

The Sealed Temple starts off light with a few monsters you already know. Don't
cast spells on Grenades unless they're fatal (Zantetsuken works), Furies are
Heavy but are weak to Water, like the Death Claws. There are three ways into
the Sealed Temple. The big heavy doors are locked. The Sealed Temple, in a
shocking turn of events, is actually sealed. We'll spend the rest of this
chapter working towards opening those doors, no kidding.

We'll enter the left door first to obtain some treasure, then return to
this place. Walk down and enter the left door to enter the "Dungeon".

  Sealed Temple - Dungeon:
  35 % Sword Dancer, Fury, Death Claw
  35 % Dragon Aevis x 2
  23 % Red Dragon, Yellow Dragon
   6 % Mini Satana

You'll encounter more Dragon Aevis' here (which are vulnerable to Petrify and
weak to Water-elemental attacks), encounter some old elemental dragons and
very rarely encounter your first new enemy, the Mini Satana.

This is one of the Satanas that lives in the Sealed Temple. It smells a little
worse than your average Satana, unless all of your Satanas are Mini Satanas,
in which case it smells exactly as bad as your average Satana.

Mini Satanas will either attack physically or cast the Reflect spell on
themselves. Once Reflect is set, they'll start casting Thundaga, Sleep and
Confuse spells on themselves, which obviously bounce off onto you. When
Thundaga hits, it'll deal truly massive amounts of damage (neighbourhood of
3000) and likely kill a character. They're Heavy and protected against all
relevant status ailments including Death and Petrify, so you'll just have to
duke it out. They've got high Evasion, Magic Evasion, and Magic Defense, but
Defense is 0 so !Aim with any strong weapon is a great way of picking them off.
The Artemis Bow deals critical damage. Since Mini Satana is alone right now,
!Rapid Fire is a good way of dealing with them. !Control also works wonders,
but a Hypno Crown takes the place of a Ribbon so you decide if that's for you.

There are hidden passages in the Dungeon, so a Thief or Freelancer/Mime who
once mastered Thief will be a great help. Starting at the entrance, simply
walk to your right to find your first hidden passage. Enter and follow it to
find a chest containing a Blastshot. You can continue to your left through
another hidden passage to a chest containing a Buckshot. Having found these
two marvelous treasures, simply return to the entrance of the Dungeon and
leave this place. You can take a quick look, if you want to explore the
Dungeon still, at the Archeodemon locked in the middle jail. We'll have to
deal with him later.

You just left the Dungeon and are back at the top of the Sealed Temple.
Since the middle door is still closed, open the right one. You now find
yourself in the "Corridor".

  Sealed Temple - Corridor:
  35 % Sword Dancer x 2
  35 % Grenade x 5
  23 % Blue Dragon, Yellow Dragon
   6 % Assassin, Assassin (Image)

You need to know some stuff about these Assassin dudes. When you run into
one, there's just a single monster. This Assassin knows how to use !Yaguu's
Strike, which sets Sap. It has 10000 HP. When you kill it, it'll summon an
Assassin (Image). You won't see anything change on-screen, though. This new
Assassin will use !Wring instead, which sets Darkness and Poison (or Paralyze
if the target is protected from both Darkness and Poison). Assassin (Image)
is identical to the normal Assassin except for the fact it will counter !Attack
with the Image attack 66% of the time where the original Assassin will only
do so 33% of the time. !Rapid Fire, especially with a Man-Eater, will quickly
dispatch the blue-robed ninja killer.

Walk down the hallway in the Corridor. When you get the option to go down
south, ignore it; there are two warp points there to take you to a new
location, but we'll get there later at a more opportune time. Continue to
the left to find the entrance to the Hall of Souls.

  Ruined Shrine - Hall of Souls:
  35 % Mini Satana, Flaremancer x 2
  35 % Mini Satana, Fury x 2
  23 % Mini Satana x 2
   6 % Dark Elemental (F), Dark Elemental (I), Dark Elemental (L)

The Hall of Souls is overrun by new enemies; Mini Satanas appear almost
always, while the rare encounter is filled with Dark Elementals. You may want
to abandon !Rapid Fire for more focused attacks; the Artemis Bow works well
with !Aim on these flying fiends. The Flaremancers were previously found in
the Black Tower, where physical attacks were forbidden. They'll still
murder you when you use anything but a magical attack; !Summon works really
well in killing Flaremancers with possibly Reflected Mini Satanas on the
field. I highly recommend Reflect Rings equipped across all four characters,
as all encounters here will use magical attacks.

There are three different kinds of Dark Elementals. All have 5500 HP, Heavy
nature and all resist all relevant status ailments including Death and
Petrify. All three will randomly use Aeroga on a single target and White Wind
to heal all Dark Elementals. There's a (F) one that is weak to Fire, will
randomly use Firaga and absorbs Ice and Lightning. There's an (I) one that
will use Blizzaga, is weak to Ice and absorbs Fire and Lightning, and there's
a (L) one that will randomly use Thundaga, is weak to Lightning and will
absorb Fire and Ice. If you strike a Dark Elemental with an elemental attack
(Fire, Ice or Lightning only) that they aren't weak to, they'll counter with
a corresponding level 5 Black spell (so Dark Elemental (F) counters Ramuh
with a Thundaga spell, etc.). If you've got Reflect Rings on, they can't
really hurt you. You can check their weakness with Libra, !Scan or just
by seeing what spells they cast. They got no Magic Defense at all, so Syldra
just destroys them.

You are in the Hall of Souls! Walk down a bit to see a hidden passage to
your left. If you don't got the goods to see one, get a Thief. Follow this
hidden passage until you're in a normally visible corridor again. If you go
up, you'll just walk into a pitfall eventually, so go down and collect the
treasures; two Blitzshot items. You can't get anywhere else without falling
down a pitfall, so retrace your steps through the hidden passage until you're
at the start of the hidden passage again.

Walk down a bit 'til your in the middle of the cross intersection. Walk to
the right to see another hidden passage. It leads to two chests with two
Blastshot items. Treasure here really blows so far, I'm sorry. Anyway, it's
time to walk back to the intersection and walk south this time. We're leaving
this Hall of Souls into... the Hall of Doubt.

  Ruined Shrine - Hall of Doubt:
  35 % Mini Satana x 2, Chrono Controller
  35 % Dark Elemental (F), Dark Elemental (I), Dark Elemental (L)
  23 % Dark Elemental (I), Dark Elemental (L), Dark Elemental (F)
   6 % Dark Elemental (L), Dark Elemental (F), Dark Elemental (I)

Dark Elementals all over the freaking place. Reflect Rings are a must, and
summon Syldra whenever you want to.

You are now in a cave-like area called the Hall of Doubt. Which way to go?
Choices, choices. Going to the right will have you meet a dead end, so go
to the left. You come across an Ether, and then a skull button! Press it to
visibly move the rock that impeded your progress. Go back to the entrance
and walk to the right, past the rock you moved. Walk up to the other skull
button and pass it on the right side to find a chest with... a Mace of Zeus.
A new weapon! The Mace of Zeus looks like a Staff, but damages like a Flail.
You only equip Staves if you want to boost Holy with the Sage's Staff, and the
Mace of Zeus doesn't do that. It has no purpose at all, sadly.

Return to the second skull button and push it to move the big rock back to
its previous location. You're cut off from the entrance now, but you can get
to another chest with some Dark Matter. Awesome. Get back to the second skull
switch. You can ignore it, since we'll just pass it on the left side to find
a hole in the ground. Get in there! You are now in the Hall of Watchmen.

  Ruined Shrine - Hall of Watchmen:
  35 % Mecha Head, Level Checker x 2
  35 % Mecha Head x 2, Level Checker
  23 % Mindflayer x 3
   6 % Exoray x 5

Those Mecha Heads aren't Heavy, so Zantetsuken them in pieces, as with those
Level Checkers. Mindflayers still suck, but Reflect Rings protect against
all of Level Checker's attacks as well as the Mindflayer's Mind Blast and
the Firaga attacks of those new enemies here, the Exoray.

Nobody likes Exoray. There are five different types, but they only really
differ in their !Special Technique. They all got 5500 HP, are Heavy but
are not protected from Death and are weak to Fire. Each turn they attack
either physically (at which they're really proficient), use their !Special
Technique (which includes a Paralyze, Poison, Darkness, Aging and Confuse 
variety) and a Firaga spell, which deals fatal amounts of damage. If you let 
a single Exoray live and then damage it, it'll re-spawn three destroyed Exoray
Respawned Exoray counter HP damage with a 33% shot at Zombie Powder, which
sucks like there's no tomorrow. Especially because you're wearing Reflect
Rings, not Angel Rings. Take Exoray out with Firaga spells, !Combine's
Flame Cannon (Blitzshot + Flame Scroll) and Flame Scrolls quickly does away
with them; for longer battles, Ribbons and Golem help against those pesky
!Special Techniques.

Anyway, Hall of Watchmen is where you are now, and there's no known way
back. Going up will take you to an NPC whose pride and joy is all-purpose
softener, curing Petrification even beyond a Gold Needle's reach. That'll
be really useful exactly never. You should absolutely talk to him, or else
a quest won't progress later and you'll have to backtrack. To the right lies
a warp point to some place you have no business going to yet, so go to the
left, where you'll enter Titan's Grotto.

  Titan's Grotto - B2:
  35 % Behemoth
  35 % Behemoth, Yojimbo
  23 % Gorgimera x 2
   6 % Dinozombie

You've only seen King Behemoths so far. While conventional RPG wisdom
dictates royal versions are always superior, these 'normal' Behemoths pack
a stronger punch. They never do anything but counter any kind of HP damage
with either a normal physical attack or the 150% damage !Critical Attack.
When you slay them, they cast Meteor. You can circumvent this nasty business
with setting either Poison or Sleep. Let the Behemoth snooze with either
Time Slip, Sleep Spellblade effects or the Sleep spell, then kill the
Behemoth with magical attacks. No counters, no Meteor!

That Dinozombie! It's Heavy, Dragon, Undead, immune to everything but weak
to Holy-elemental attacks. It may use Bone, Poison Breath and the ever-aweful
Zombie Breath, but Zombie Breath only on every third turn. Quickly kill it
with the Apollo's Harp, Sage's Staff or repeated Holy spells, it'll go down
quickly.

You'll want to take those Reflect Rings off now, as they're useless here.
!Blue is great here because of Time Slip for the Behemoths and Missile for
the Yojimbo and Gorgimera enemies. !Summon works wonders to deal powerful
magical damage and to summon Odin on those Gorgimera encounters.

You can really only go one way here until you have the option of going down
some stairs. Go there for an Elixir, then go back up and follow the path
further into Titan's Grotto B1. Before you go though, make sure to use !Catch
on a Behemoth in B2, and then not Release it. You'll need one in a story
event; it's like that Kornago Gourd gig back in Quelb, only mandatory for the
completion of this dungeon. Speaking of the Kornago Gourd, it'll make Catching
the Behemoth much easier.

  Titan's Grotto - B1:
  35 % Iron Giant, Gorgimera
  35 % Yojimbo x 2
  23 % Iron Giant, Yojimbo
   6 % Dinozombie

On B1 there are no new enemies, but also no Behemoths. Did you get one? You
really should've. You can only go one way, and that's passing the waterfalls
towards a chest containing the Vishnu Vest. Vishnu the preserver, great god
of the Hindu, bestowed these Clothes with superior Defense and Magic
Defense as well as halving Fire-, Ice- and Lightning-elemental damage by
50%. Nice armor, 'tis. We've exhausted all options on this side of the
Hall of Watchmen. Let's get to that warp point! Travel back through Titan's
Grotto and cross the Hall of Watchmen towards the warp point. Choose to
warp. Welcome to the River of Souls. It's eh... I don't really know why
there is a river of souls. Souls aren't made of water.

  River of Souls - B1:
  35 % Soul Eater
  35 % Soul Eater x 2, Skull Eater x 2, Nutkin x 2
  23 % Soul Eater, Skull Eater x 5
   6 % Nutkin, Soul Eater x 4

  River of Souls - B2:
  35 % Rukh
  35 % Belphegor, Crystelle x 2
  23 % Vilia
   6 % Mover x 3

  River of Souls - B3:
  35 % Sea Devil, Rukh
  35 % Belphegor x 2, Crystelle
  23 % Stingray
   6 % Mover x 3

There were squirrels that ate nuts, okay. Then there were squirrels that
ate skulls. Nasty, but doable. Now, they eat souls. The blue ones eat souls.
They're harder than the other two obviously. They've got 7000 HP and there's
no way to one-shot them, though you can put them to Sleep. They'll attack
physically with quite some force and they may use Drain, Osmose and Death
Claw. Their Special !Incisor sets Confuse, so watch out for that. Sometimes,
you'll find a single Nutkin, and after its demise four Soul Eater appear.
Surprise!

Skull Eaters fall quickly to stuff like Mind Blast, Bio, 1000 Needles,
anything that pierces Magic Defense mostly. Ninja Scrolls and !Combine
attacks kill them right quickly, leaving Soul Eaters at the mercy of your
!Rapid Fire barrage. !Control is real useful in this dungeon as Rukh,
Soul Eater, Vilia and Stingray are all powerful monsters that appear by
themselves. Enemies here aren't particulary dangerous. It's the season for
Hermes Sandals!

You are warped near the entrance to the River of Souls; going up will take
you to the Sealed Temple's "Dungeon" area, but we don't want to go there.
Let's take a look at the River of Souls. Walking into the water will have
you taken away by the current to another location, so it's important to
know which way you're going. I'm here for that.

Ignore the first staircase into the water and walk to the left. Take the
second staircase into the water, and you'll be swept onto another platform.
To the far right (ignore the option below) you'll see a chest with an
Iron Draft. Go back to the split and go down below; there's a staircase here.
Take it and the water'll take you to another chest with a Power Drink. We're
stuck on this platform and there's no staircase, so drop down the hole to
B2.

To the left is another chest, this one containing a Dark Matter. Go down the
staircase here; the water'll take you to a new platform. A bit to the
left is a new chest with a Turtle Shell (a lot of reagents in this dungeon!)
Walk up 'til you see a path to your right. Ignore it, and go to the left,
up and around the water until you see four staircases here. Which one, which
one? The second one from the left is the one you want, as it'll take you to
the lone island in the middle with the Elixir chest. Get it, walk down the
staircase and you'll find yourself on a platform to the right. Go up and arch
to the right to find your path blocked by a purple turtle. Cast Float on the
team, then face it.

Gil Turtle
Level: 57, HP: 40000, MP: 1000
Defense: 50, Magic Defense: 60
Evasion: 50%, Magic Evasion: 60%
Steal: Turtle Shell (rare)
Drop: Grand Helm (always)
Absorbs: Water, Wind, Earth, Poison, Lightning, Fire
Nullifies: Holy
Weakness: Ice
Status: Protect, Shell
Creature: Undead, Heavy
Special Technique: !Turtle
Special Technique Effect: sets Darkness, Poison and Confuse
Vulnerable to: Slow, Regen
Attacks: Battle, !Turtle, Earthquake

This Gil Turtle is slightly different than the original one, but it don't
matter much. A bit more HP, its defenses are slightly higher, that's about
it. The same stategy you could've applied versus the original Gil Turtle
still works here. For a longer description, please check out section 4.36.1

For now, it will probably do to mention how you should cast Dispel or use
the Judgment Staff to remove the inherent Protect (and Shell) from the Gil
Turtle, then enhance two swords with Blizzaga Spellblade effects and let
loose with !Rapid Fire. It'll kill the fiend easily. In the meantime, do
whatever. !Rapid Fire with the Sage's Staff, cast Quick and play on Apollo's
Harp two times, cast Blizzaga on the thing, I don't care. This should be
an easy battle with all the Golem, Mighty Guard, Mirage Vests and what have
you. Make sure that Float is up (through Float or Mighty Guard) to avoid that
final Earthquake attack when Gil Turtle's fat ass hits the ground.

When you're done, you get a Grand Helm. It's got a bit more on Defense than
the Genji Helm, but doesn't protect against statuses. It's no option now
that you're draped in Ribbons, but if you ever want to switch to a Heavy
Armor Job again, it might be for you.

Anyway, continue down the hallway to find B3 of the River of Souls. This is
a good place to find a Dragon Whisker, since the Stingray enemy appears an
unprecedented 23% here. 

To your right, you can find a chest with a Cottage. To your left, a long
narrow path with nowhere to go but further down. When you press on, you'll
encounter a split; to the left you'll meet a chest with a Fuma Shuriken just
after a turn up north; pick up that chest, then continue. You'll walk up to a
man standing there. He'll challenge you to go catch a Behemoth. But you
already did! He releases the seal on the main door back at the start of this
whole ordeal, where the real evilly evils lay waiting for you.

Walk back to River of Souls - B2. Continue on B2 while sticking to the right
and later as far up as you can and you'll easily spot the entrance to B1.
Walk to the right and never enter the water 'til you come at the spot where
you were warped to in the first place, which is also where you can leave the
River of Souls and enter the "Dungeon" part of the Sealed Temple. Simply
walk around the jail cells towards the entrance here to find yourself out on
top of the Sealed Temple.

I think it's time you headed back to that airshupmarine for a quick rest,
Save and a new chapter...

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.54.2  The Sealed Temple; Arena
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Blue Dragon (#132), Red Dragon (#133), Yellow Dragon (#134), Mecha Head
  (#150), Grenade (#204), Level Checker (#207), Moss Fungus (#209), Great
  Dragon (#212), Achelon (#213), Ninja (#214), Dragon Aevis (#215), Sword
  Dancer (#216), Death Claw (#217), Fury (#218), Yojimbo (#219), Iron Giant
  (#220), Gorgimera (#224), Mindflayer (#225), Mini Satana (#229), Assassin
  (#230), Soul Eater (#231), Behemoth (#232), Dark Elemental (F) (#233), Dark
  Elemental (I) (#234), Dark Elemental (L) (#235), Exoray (#236), Duelist
  (#237), Dinozombie (#239), Claret Dragon (#240), Ironclad (#241), Grand
  Aevis (#315), Archeodemon (#316)

  Container contents:
  Apocalypse, Blastshot, Blitzshot x2, Buckshot, Cottage x4, Dark Matter x4,
  Elixir, Ether x2, Fuma Shuriken x2, Gladius, Hero Cocktail, Holy Water x2,
  Hyper Wrist, Kagenui, Longinus, Phoenix Down, Royal Crown, Sorceror's Mantle,
  Turtle Shell, Water Scroll

  Miscellaneous items:
  Flame Shield (rare Grenade steal), Artemis Bow (rare Dragon Aevis steal),
  Enhancer (rare Sword Dancer steal), Thor Hammer (rare Death Claw steal),
  Cursed Ring (rare Fury steal), Reflect Ring (common Fury steal), Murakumo
  (rare Yojimbo steal), Aegis Shield (rare Gorgimera steal), Main Gauche (rare
  Mindflayer steal), Earthbreaker (rare Ironclad steal), Fairy Bow (guaranteed
  Grand Aevis drop), Chaos Orb (guaranteed Archeodemon drop)

  Blue spells:
  Level 5 Death, Level 4 Graviga, Level 2 Old, Level 3 Flare, Death Claw,
  Aeroga, Flame Thrower, Mind Blast, Vampire, Mighty Guard, Self-Destruct, ???,
  White Wind, Missile

You can open the doors into the main room of the Sealed Temple now, called
the "Arena". Note that the common Assassin encounter here features an (Image)
version only, and the rare Assassin encounters features both like normal.

  Sealed Temple - Arena:
  35 % Mini Satana
  35 % Assassin (Image)
  23 % Red Dragon, Blue Dragon
   6 % Assassin, Assassin (Image)

Walking into the Arena, you'll soon come across two options; you can take
the top route or the bottom one. The top route will take you to a dead end,
so take the bottom one. Walk around until you can reach a chest containing
a Dark Matter, enter the hidden passage left of the chest for a Hero Cocktail.
Now walk south of the Dark Matter chest to find another chest with a Holy
Water and a passage leading further in.

There are two options here. There's a hidden passage which takes you to the
Gladius (a Holy-elemental Knife that boosts Agility a bit). If you're working
with Freelancers, you won't use it. Get back through the hidden passage and
walk north, where your progress is impeded by a statue. You can't even try
to use a Gold Needle on it. Make sure to interact with it, though, else you
won't be able to solve its mysteries. We'll need that multi-softener after
all! Whodda thunk it. There was this NPC in the Hall of Watchmen who had it,
remember? We'll need to go there again. Leave this place and return to the
outside of the Sealed Temple.

Enter the right door, into the "Corridor". At the split in the Corridor, walk
south towards the two warp points you never used. The left one will take you
to a part of Titan's Grotto you haven't been to yet. You'll appear next to
a chest with some Dark Matter in it. You can only walk to the right from
here, then take the stairs down for an Elixir. Walk towards the waterfall to
your left, and let it sweep you down to the level below you, where you can
find the entrance to B2. Here, simply follow the path down 'til you appear
in the Hall of Watchmen.

In the Hall of Watchmen, go north as soon as you can to find the NPC you
need. He'll be more than happy to give you his invention (as long as you
interacted with the statue), but it'll only last 5:00 minutes when he takes
it out of the Tupperware or something. So you gotta get to that statue in
under 5 minutes! Piece of cake with Read Ahead, don't worry.

From the NPC, walk to the right and take the warp point there. It'll take you
to the River of Souls B1, but just go up and leave that place to find yourself
in the "Dungeon" of the Sealed Temple. Simply walk to the left and around
the jail cells to leave it, then enter the big doors in the middle. You'll
remember this place, so just walk to the statue and use the softening serum,
but only when you're prepared...

Grand Aevis
Level: 97, HP: 42000, MP: 20000
Defense: 60, Magic Defense: 40
Evasion: 30%, Magic Evasion: 20%
Steal: Cottage (rare)
Win: Fairy's Bow (always)
Absorbs: Fire, Ice, Lightning, Wind
Status: Float
Creature: Heavy, Aevis
Vulnerable to: Slow
Attacks: !Wing Attack, Blaster, Breath Wing, Evil Eye, Maelstrom, Paraclete,
 Poison Breath, Zombie Breath, Zombie Powder

Dark Elemental
Level: 74, HP: 5500, MP: 10000
Defense: 70, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Hi-Potion (rare)
Win: nothing
Nullifies: Fire, Ice, Lightning
Creature: Heavy
Vulnerable to: Slow, Stop
Attacks: Aeroga, White Wind, Self-Destruct

Grand Aevis is very difficult to deal with. First off, he's very very fast,
so he'll keep up with you if you're Hasted and will double-turn you if you're
not. Second, he'll throw a barrage of attacks at you that are difficult to
defend against; all of the attacks listed above with the exception of Paraclete
he'll use randomly. Few straigth-damage attacks as you can see, but both
Maelstrom and Breath Wing are very dangerous, let alone Zombie Breath. Ribbons
will protect against Evil Eye. Angel Rings will help against Zombie Powder
which is otherwise unblockable, so I advise you wear them.

Then, there's the Dark Elementals. They're different from the random ones
in that they have no elemental weakness and won't react to elemental spells.
They'll just sit there and randomly use White Wind and Aeroga. When they're
both destroyed and Grand Aevis suffers HP damage, they'll be revived with
full HP. They're bad news because they heal Grand Aevis with White Wind all
the time and they're the Grand Aevis' defense against !Rapid Fire as with
them around !Rapid Fire will often target the Dark Elementals, and Grand
Aevis will be in the back row halving most physical attacks.

There is no quick victory here, you'll just want to set Slow and then be able
to nuke Grand Aevis in the back while at all times you're able to counter
attacks sent your way. You start the battle out with Angel Rings most likely,
not Hermes Sandals, so it's likely you'll get your first turn while you've
suffered already. Slow Cannon works wonders; you can't really set Slow with
conventional attacks since Grand Aevis has such a high level and Magic Evasion.
Masamune-wielders will get a turn prior to everybody else, so use that
knowledge to your advantage to get either Slow Cannon or Mighty Guard up
before anything else happens on-screen. Flare and Holy are the supreme
spells to use; they ignore Grand Aevis' Magic Defense and are powerful and
targetable.

!Rapid Fire is generally a waste, since there's those Dark Elementals on-
screen most of the time. !Rapid Firing an Aevis Killer will take care of the
back row issue and will always deal critical damage to the Grand Aevis. You
could deal decent amounts of damage if you get Flare Spellblade effects
going on and find yourself in a situation where you get Grand Aevis alone.
Dark Elementals take a lot of damage from boosted Syldra, !Combine attacks
such as Holy Cannon (Hero Cocktail + Blitzshot). You get a Fairy's Bow for
your trouble, the strongest Bow there is. It has a 12% chance of casting
Confuse on the target; quite useless.

When you're done, follow the path until you you find the exit. Go up and find
the chest with an Ether in it before you leave this place, then leave this
place. You have entered the Heart of Ronka.

  Heart of Ronka - Treasure Room:
  59 % Exoray x 5
  35 % Iron Giant x 2
   6 % Ironclad

Exoray will be your most frequent encounter here, and since the Iron Giant
can be Zantetsuken'd really the only encounter to worry about. They're
weak to Fire, so !Combine Flame Cannon (Flame Scroll + Blitzshot) and Firaga
takes care of them quick. If you find yourself to be slow, Reflect Rings
help against the Exoray's Firaga spells.

You very rarely run into Ironclad, an Iron Giant upgrade. It's Heavy and
immune to everything. It's got very potent physical attacks obviously, as
well as Rocket Punch and Hurricane. Summon Golem versus this guy, as every
kind of HP damage will be countered by either a normal physical or the
barrier-piercing, unblockable !Takedown. With 22000 HP, it's best to make
sure you attack as few times as possible. !Rapid Fire's nice, but provokes
two counters in a row so beware. You can steal a rare Earthbreaker, the most
powerful Axe there is, but I'll talk about it when you find one.

In the Treasure Room, you'll find four chests from the get-go: Ether x 2 and
two Fuma Shuriken. Go south and find a Dark Matter and a Cottage where the
path splits. Go south for a Cottage, a Blitzshot and the Sorceror's Mantle,
a cloak that halves all elemental attacks in damage and adds 10% Evasion and
20% Magic Evasion. Stick to your Hermes Sandals. Get back to the split, and
walk to the right for two Holy Water items. Walk south and head into the
B1 level.

  Heart of Ronka - B1:
  35 % Mecha Head x 2, Level Checker
  35 % Mindflayer x 3
  30 % Exoray x 5

Here, you only find a chest featuring the Kagenui, the strongest Ninja blade
which attempts to cast Stop 20% of the time. The Kagenui has something to
do with pinning your opponent's shadow to the ground or whatever. It adds to
your Agility and is Spellblade OK, so you might want to equip it. Now, get
back to the Treasure Room, get to the split and walk to the left, where you
find a Blitzshot and a Phoenix Down and can now enter B1 from the other side.

You can walk to the right, but you'll just reach the Kagenui chest from an
unapproachable angle. Go south to find a heavy stone / chest puzzle similair
to Ghido's submerged cave.

  1   2
    5
  3   4

Take the stone from chest #5 and deposit it in #1. Enter the opened door and
find a Blastshot and a Buckshot. Return and deposit the stone in #4. The
leftmost door opened now; pick up Hyper Wrist. The Hyper Wrist boosts
Strength by 5 and Battle Power by 10, but won't give Battle Power to weapons
that have none (Rune Bow, Power Staff) or that work with magical attacks
(Rods, Harps). Put the stone in chest #3 to further your journey into B2.

  Heart of Ronka - B2:
  42 % Exoray x 5
  35 % Mindflayer x 2, Achelon
  23 % Iron Giant x 2

In B2, you'll see a chest to the right immediately. It's a Cottage, go get it.
You'll find a rotating chain lift that you encountered earlier in the
Ruins section of the Interdimensional Rift; climb down to enter the Warp Zone,
which is nowhere near as handy as the Warp Zone in that classic Mario game.

  Warp Zone:
  35 % Mecha Head, Level Checker x 2
  35 % Moss Fungus x 3
  23 % Exoray x 5
   6 % Moss Fungus x 2, Mindflayer

Right and then up will take you to a warp point that'll take you to the
start of the Sealed Temple, but we don't want to go there. No, you'll want
to go down and then walk to the right to find a total of five rotating
chains you can choose from. All but the left-most one will take you at some
point in a series of rooms connected with hidden passages. Best to take the
second from the left, walk into the hidden passage to the left and follow
it to a chest containing an Apocalypse, a Knightsword even stronger than the
Ragnarok. Good stuff for your !Spellblade !Rapid Fire monkey. Return to the
Warp Zone and take the left-most rotating chain out of the five to B2. Enter
the small hidden passage to your left at B2 and go all the way up. See that
long staircase, flanked by statues to your left? Go down that staircase to
find yourself in the Abyssal Falls.

  Abyssal Falls - B1:
  35 % Duelist x 5
  35 % Assassin, Assassin (Image)
  23 % Great Dragon, Dragon Aevis
   6 % Soul Eater x 3

Duelist appears as a single brawler, but after every !Special Technique he'll
change into a random other Duelist. HP is carried over, status ailments
are not. The purpose of this all is that a single Duelist will appear to
have five different Special Techniques:

!Left Jab (150% damage)
!Air Fist (sets Old and Sap)
!High Kick (sets Paralyze)
!Elbow (Unblockable and barrier-piercing)
!Body Slam (Unblockable, barrier-piercing, adds Paralyze)

Duelist has 15000 HP and is a Human. Any HP damage is countered by a 33% shot
at (Strong) Attack, which deals 9999 damage and kills a character. It's best to
use !Rapid Fire with one or more Man-Eaters; instant kill, no fuss. Berserk
can also be set to circumvent the (Strong) Attack threat, but it will boost
Duelist's already impressive physical might.

Walk to the right of the massive waterfall and then go down. Keep sticking
to the right as much as possible, and you'll be passing two chests containing
a Cottage and the Royal Crown. The latter is interesting because it features
5% Evasion and truly superior Magic Defense and 10% Magic Evasion. Freelancers
will want a Ribbon or Gold Hairpin still, but if you turn back into a Job that
cannot equip Ribbons and can't benefit from Gold Hairpins, the Royal Crown is
a sweet helmet every Job can use. You can find a staircase going down to B2
south of the Royal Crown chest.

  Abyssal Falls - B2:
  35 % Duelist x 5
  35 % Great Dragon, Dragon Aevis
  23 % Mini Satana x 2
   6 % Dark Elemental (I), Dark Elemental (L), Dark Elemental (F)

Go down two stairs until you see an opening protected by a magic barrier.
This is the path leading into Neo Shinryu's Roost, we'll get there later. To
the right here, you can find a staircase leading down in the the Treasure
Room of the Abyssal Falls.

  Abyssal Falls - Treasure Room:
  35 % Duelist x 5
  35 % Assassin, Assassin (Image), Yojimbo
  23 % Assassin, Assassin (Image), Ninja
   6 % Claret Dragon

Take the Dark Matter x 2, Turtle Shell, Water Scroll and Cottage. Why they
made a Treasure Room for these is unknown. Go back up to B2 and walk to the
left, past the blocked entrance to Shinryu's Roost. A waterfall is blocking
your way; it'll always sweep you downwards. You can open a chest for a Coral
Ring here. The button briefly stops the waterfall from flowing, but you'll
need to Dash after pressing that button to pass the waterfall before it
starts flowing again. If you made it, you find yourself in the Hall of
Tranquility. No monsters here, just a Save Point and a pale, yellow-eyed
NPC who tells you what's up:

There are three more enemies to go after. There's Omega Mk. II to the left,
there's Neo Shinryu to the right and there's Enuo to the south. But your
progress to Enuo halted as of yet; you need to defeat Archeodemon first. He's
all the way at the start of the Sealed Temple! No worries, we won't have to
travel far. Up north in the Hall of Tranquility, go get the Longinus, the
strongest Lance of this game. Go Save, then make the journey home.

Pass through Abyssal Falls B2 and then B1. You're back at the Heart of Ronka.
Go up the long stairway flanked with statues, then go back south in the
parallel hallway 'til you see the rotating chain lift to your right. Go down
to enter the Warp Zone. Walk to the right and then up to find a warp point
leading to the start of the dungeon. You're back! You can go rest and save
at the Airshupmarine if you want to. It's the left door we want, leading to
the "Dungeon" part of the Sealed Temple. In the middle jail, the Archeodemon
is waiting for us. Equipped as we are with the jail key, we can open 'er up
and face the music.

Archeodemon
Level: 17, HP: 50000, MP: 62000
Defense: 80, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Phoenix Down (rare)
Win: Chaos Orb (always)
Absorbs: Fire, Ice, Lightning, Poison, Holy, Earth, Wind, Water
Status: Protect (always)
Creature: Heavy, Magic Beast, Undead
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Slow
Attacks: Flare, Holy, Meteor, ???, Curse, Drain Touch, Giga Flare, Mega Flare

Don't worry, with proper preparation he won't rip much. Archeodemon is a vile
thing, an Undead abertation that uses Dark Arts. He's a monster, allright.
He's got a few "things". Thing 1 is that he uses Flare, Mega Flare and Giga
Flare. Flare and Giga Flare deal around 2300 to non-Shelled targets, the
latter to all charactes on-screen. Mega Flare does around 2000. Remember that
Flare and Mega Flare can be Reflected, but Giga Flare cannot; also note that
Giga Flare will not be accompanied by a weakness in defense like it did with
Twintania.

Thing 2 is how he's difficult to damage. The bastard absorbs all elements
and will counter any non-Magic attack with a Death spell focused on itself,
meaning full HP restoration. You could set Reflect on the Archeodemon to
prevent Death from landing, but you'll still have to deal with the Death
spell coming your way (not ideal) and Archeodemon's inherent Protect and
massive Defense.

Archeodemon will start the battle with Drain Touch, a GBA-only attack that
will feature your Dark Arts skillset in the future. Second turn, it'll cast
Flare. He'll then go all "Focusing Power" like, wait for two turns and then
cast either Mega Flare (66%) or Giga Flare (33%). He'll keep looping this
until he's damaged below 20000 HP, at which point he'll start randomly
casting Flare, Holy and Meteor spells, through in a random Hurrican attack,
Death spell or Drain Touch, spend every fourth turn Focusing Power, then
waiting a single turn before using either Giga Flare (66%) or Mega Flare (33%).
In the meantime, he'll counter any non-Magic attack with a Death spell
focused on himself and any Magic spell with either Curse (33%), the Blue ???
spell (33%) or nothing. He will not counter when he's Focusing Power.

Drain Touch is a HP draining attack that is about twice as strong as Drain,
will never miss and in a shocking turn of events does NOT have inverse
effects on the Undead, so you can drain HP from them and Bone Mail wearers
without problems. Curse sets a random status ailment out of Toad, Mini,
Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep, Confuse, Berserk, Silence and HP Leak; Ribbon
-wearers will be well-protected.

Archedemon has no weakness as such; he's Undead so Apollo's Harp and the
Sage's Staff can be used to great effects, but he'll counter with Death so
it's a no-go unless you set Reflect. I wouldn't really advise you go ahead
with that strategy though. Your biggest asset in this battle is the !Time
skillset. As a single creature with 0 Magic Defense, Archeodemon is a prime
target for Meteor spells. Everybody who can cast Meteor can also cast Quick.
I'd suggest four characters with !Time 6, paired with !Dualcast where possible.
Sling Meteor spells after Meteor spells after the guy. The only drawback is
that Archeodemon may counter with either Curse (will likely have no effect)
and ???, the latter will kill a character when it lands. Since Meteor hits
multiple times, Archeodemon may counter up to two times. Since Archeodemon
will use no physical attacks and all of his attacks pierce Magic Defense,
the only thing you could want from equipment is stat boosts and Magic Evasion;
Angel Robe (25% ME) and Black and White Robes (20%) are superior in this
department. You'll avoid a lot of ??? attacks equipped with these, especially
with Shell up.

So! Get in there, cast Mighty Guard and then either cast Quick/Meteor/Meteor
or Meteor/Quick/Meteor/Meteor/Meteor/Meteor. Gold Hairpins are handy here, as
this strategy is MP-heavy. Flare is also an option instead of Meteor, but
it'll come out weaker. !Combine's Slow Cannon isn't an option, as the Death
counter will also remove Slow. When Archeodemon manages to get in a lucky
??? attack, revive and continue. Archeodemon should never really get into
"Focusing Power", as he should be dead before he gets there.

When you slay the fiend, the warp point leading into the Lethe Court will
be opened up to you. Leave the "Dungeon" to go outside, then enter the
big door in the middle. In the "Arena", walk towards the Heart of Ronka,
go left at the first split, go down until you encounter the chest puzzle,
put the stone in the bottom-left chest, go to the left in the Heart of
Ronka, find the large staircase flanked by statues, go down into the
Abyssal Falls B1 and later B2, where you must go to the right and Dash after
pushing the skeleton button to stop, drop and roll behind the waterfall.
In the Hall of Tranquility, go Cottage and Save and prepare for the Lethe
Court.

Take the warp point below the NPC.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.54.3  The Sealed Temple; The Lethe Court
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Great Dragon, (#212), King Behemoth (#221), Crystal Dragon (#222), Assassin
  (#230), Behemoth (#232), Dinozombie (#239), Claret Dragon (#240), Ironclad
  (#241), Hades (#242), Guardian (#317), Launcher (#318), Launcher (#319), Wave
  Cannon (#320), Enuo (#323)

  Container contents:
  Elixir, Mutsunokami, Robe of Lords

  Miscellaneous items: Earthbreaker (rare Ironclad steal), Cursed Ring (rare
  Hades steal), Bone Mail (rare Hades drop and rare Enuo steal), Crystal Orb
  (guaranteed Guardian drop)

  Blue spells:
  Doom, Roulette, Flash, Flame Thrower, Dark Spark, Off-Guard, Mighty Guard,
  Missile

  Lethe Court - The Shadowed Gate
  35 % Ironclad
  35 % Assassin, Assassin (Image), Dinozombie
  23 % King Behemoth, Behemoth
   6 % Hades

Here be dragons, watch out. I mean 'dragons' here metaphorically, there are
not really dragons here. Ironclad, Assassin and Dinozombie require Golem
and powerful attacks. King Behemoth isn't Heavy, Behemoth is vulnerable to
Sleep. Hades is new. He's not a good boy.

Hades
Level: 97, HP: 33333, MP: 10000
Defense: 30, Magic Defense: 40
Evasion: 50%, Magic Evasion: 60%
Steal: Cursed Ring (rare)
Win: Bone Mail (rare)
Absorbs: Poison, Weakness: Holy
Creature: Undead, Heavy
Vulnerable to: Slow, Stop
Attacks: !Sickle, Death, Flare, Dark Spark, Doom, Roulette, Curse, Deep
 Freeze, Meltdown, Almagest, Reaper's Sword

It seems Azulmagia was only a single example of a race of giant Blue Mages.
Hades has 33333 HP, is Heavy, Undead and immune to everything you'd like to set
on it. It uses Black spells (Flare, Death), Blue spells (Doom, Roulette,
Dark Spark), Dark Arts (Deep Freeze, Meltdown, Curse) and two impressive
monster attacks: Reaper's Sword and ALMAGEST. That thing uses Almagest, you
just lost over 5000 HP on the entire party. The only things that can protect
you against that are Aegis Shield (33% nullify), Sorceror's Mantle (50%
damage), Shell status (50% damage) and the Force Shield (nullifies). Whatta
guy. Deep Freeze and Meltdown both inflict sufficient damage to kill the
character it targets, unless it's protected from Ice (Deep Freeze) or Fire
(Meltdown).

Kill these things ASAP. You can't use !Control or !Catch on these guys,
which is a pain. Quick + Apollo's Harp, all the Holy spells you can throw
at it, stuff like that. Hades counters Magic with either Flare (33%) or Death
(33%) and non-Magic with !Sickle (33%), so Carbuncle prior to Holy slaying
might be a good idea. Also note that Hades is not fickle with that !Sickle
and will leave quite a mark.

The path here is crystal clear. There's a chest with a Mutsunokami (strongest
katana with a 50% (!) critical percentage) and an Elixir. Find the eldritch
warp point. YouŽll be transported to another part of the Shadowed Gate;
nothing to do here but find the next eldritch warp point. Another part of
the Shadowed Gate here; there's the next warp point to the left of you, which
leads to the Stairs of Destiny.

  Lethe Court - The Stairs of Destiny
  35 % Ironclad
  35 % Crystal Dragon x 2
  23 % Claret Dragon, Great Dragon
   6 % Hades

Bend to the right and follow the stairs unil you find the Robe of Lords, a
Robe with truly superior Defense, Magic Defense and Magic Evasion (24%). No
special properties. Get back to the entrance of the SoD, then go to the left.
You'll meet a sparkle.

Guardian
Level: 97, HP: 55000, MP: 60000
Defense: 40, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Blitzshot (rare)
Win: Crystal Orb (always)
Absorbs: Lightning
Creature: Heavy
Vulnerable to: nothing
Attacks: Gravity, Graviga, Off-Guard, Atomic Ray, Delta Attack, Electrocute,
 Encircle, Reverse Polarity,

Wave Cannon
Level: 97, HP: 22000, MP: 55000
Defense: 20, Magic Defense: 0
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 0%
Steal: Blitzshot (rare)
Absorbs: Lightning
Creature: Heavy
Vulnerable to: nothing
Attacks: Wave Cannon

Launcher x2
Level: 97, HP: 20000, MP: 50000
Defense: 10, Magic Defense: 10
Evasion: 0%, Magic Evasion: 10%
Steal: Blastshot (rare)
Absorbs: Lightning
Creature: Heavy
Vulnerable to: nothing
Attacks (Left one): Missile, (Valiant Attack), Rainbow Wind, Rocket Punch
Attacks (Right one): Flash, Missile, (Valiant Attack), Mustard Bomb

Guardian! Throwback to FFIII for the SNES? Who knows. The Guardian will
feel like this dungeon's easiest boss fight, but it still a nice challenge.
The Guardian has three additional animus' built into it. There are two
Launchers that simultaneously attack you and protect the Guardian itself, and
there is the Wave Cannon front panel that does nothing until it's ready to
fire, at which point it performs a double Wave Cannon attack. You're either
having one or more character in the air with !Jump, or you've lost your
battle as double Wave Cannon deals 100% of your maximum HP and inflicts Sap
just for the hell of it. The Guardian itself is immune to attacks until you've
destroyed both Launchers, at which point you can start damaging it.

You'll start the battle being attacked by the two Launchers and the Wave
Cannon front panel starting its countdown. The Launcher on top is capable
of using the nameless (Valiant Attack), which is a missile attack which cuts
current HP by 50% and sets Old. In addition, it may use Missile, Rocket
Punch and Rainbow Wind. The other Launcher can use (Valiant Attack), and
Flash, Missile and Mustard Bomb. Both Launchers have 20000 HP; every first
turn is (Valiant Attack), every second turn is one of the other options.

The Wave Cannon goes like this:

DIFFUSION BEAM CANNON: ONLINE
LASER CROSSHAIR BRIGHTNESS: 20
SAFETY LOCK: OFFLINE
BARREL PRESSURE RISING
BLAST SHIELDING: ACTIVATED
ENERGY CELLS: 128% CAPACITY
FIRING - (dual Wave Cannon)

You'll want to destroy both Launchers and the Wave Cannon, then pound on the
Guardian itself. The Guardian itself won't start attacking until it's
Launchers have been destroyed, at which point it'll start off with a Delta
Attack. Three more attacks can be performed, after which Guardian will have
repaired both Launchers. When those are back, it'll turn itself invincible
again.

Ribbons, Bone Mail and Angel Rings are what protect you from the weakening
effects of (Valiant Attack). Ribbons are best, since they also help against
Delta Attack, Flash and Rainbow Wind. The most important target to focus on
is the Wave Cannon, as that's the countdown to Game Over part of the machine.
In the meantime, you'll take percentage-based damage, but with all them Ribbons
on yer head, you won't suffer a lot. Next up, time to take out the Launchers.
!Dualcast Holy and Dual-Wield Flare Spellblade effects are very powerful in
this fight. Once when the Launchers are gone, Guardian will be a lone target.
Time to bust out !Rapid Fire, !Dualcast Meteor, stuff you know and like.

For your troubles, you'll get a Crystal Orb. It'll give you +5 Magic Power,
superior Magic Defense and 12% Magic Evasion, once more proving there are
tons of ways to be inferior to Hermes Sandals.

Ascend for the final showdown. Lethe Court - The Void is bereft of any
random encounters.

The story of Bartz, Lenna, Krile and Faris mirrors the story of the Dawn
Warriors 30 years ago, but it also mirrors the story of mysterious group of
warriors 1000 years ago. These warriors took up the Twelve Legendary Weapons
(which takes at least fourteen hands) at faced a terrible mage called Enuo.
Enuo was immortal, but traded away his immortality for even greater power;
power over the Void. It is said that Enuo was slain by the Twelve Legendary
Weapons, leaving the Void behind. But it seems that Enuo's evil is not easily
destroyed...

Enuo
Level: 97, HP: 60000, MP: 65000
Defense: 100, Magic Defense: 30
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 120%
Creature: Heavy
Vulnerable to: Slow, Stop
Attacks: Protect, Shell, Berserk, Holy, Poison, Bio, Firaga, Blizzaga,
 Thundaga, Flare, Osmose, Regen, Haste, Slowga, Graviga, Meteor, Aqua Breath,
 Aeroga, Pond's Chorus, Drain Touch, Deep Freeze, Meltdown, Evil Eye, White
 Hole, Grand Cross, Giga Flare

This fight is actually two fights in a row. There's the first fight with
Enuo, which is difficult. Then the Power of the Void increases, after which
a refreshed Enuo will attack you again with inherent Protect and Shell with
a few very dangerous attacks.

Enuo starts with two tentacles that aid him in his endeavors. These tentacles
are invulnerable and not normally targetable, but random-target attacks such
as !Rapid Fire and the Meteor spell may still hit them. The tentacles cannot
be removed from the fight and cast spells and perform other attacks as well as
Enuo does. The tentacles are responsible for the buff spells that may appear
during the fight, as well as the rare Grand Cross and Giga Flare attacks.

I highly advise four Freelancers for this fight. Since so many status-
ailments will be thrown around the battlefield, Ribbons are a must and Mimes
cannot equip them. After the Power of the Void increases, Enuo will start to
use Danse Macabre fairly often, and you really don't want that to have any
effect. Angel Rings are a must-have accessory for this season's fashion
anyway!

The majority of Enuo's attacks are reflectable so it's tempting so summon
Carbuncle ASAP. Make sure you get Mighty Guard before you do this though;
certain spells (Aqua Breath, Meteor, the Dark Arts) will still hit a target
with Reflect set, and you'll want the Shell status on the entire party to
protect yourself against those attacks. Mighty Guard is vulnerable to Reflect,
so you can't cast it after Carbuncle has arrived. Not having Reflect is also
an option if you want to keep the option for Curaga open. ST spells may kill a
character though, even with Shell applied. Dude, it's ENUO. He murders Light
Warriors for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

After Enuo has taken about five turns, one of the tentacles will always use
Grand Cross, which may even harm those with a Ribbon equipped should it
decide to set Confuse, a Countdown 'til Death or HP to a single-digit level.
When Enuo makes like a chameleon and starts taking on the colour of the ever-
changing psychadelic anime background, you know it's coming. After about ten
turns of Enuo action, the same tentacle will unleash a Giga Flare attack, but
it'll deal around 2000 damage to non-Shelled targets so it's no biggie
(relatively). Again, Giga Flare is heralded by Enuo's colour-swapping madness.

Since Enuo has two fake targets, !Rapid Fire and Meteor will only hit 33%
of the time. The Holy spell, boosted by either the Sage's Staff or a Rune
Chime, is a very powerful and consistent means of damage output. Boosted
level 5 Black spells are also quite powerful. Flare Spellblade effects can
make weapons like the Ragnarok and Apocalypse very powerful, and when they
do land they inflict a massive beating.

In conclusion, for the first fight I advise at least one !Blue caster for
Mighty Guard and emergency White Wind spells at least two !White casters for
Curaga, Arise and mostly Holy spells (!Dualcast is really nice) and all
characters equipped with Ribbons and Angel Rings. !Time is a nice asset for
Hastega and Quick. You may even wish to employ somebody with !Mix to use
Goliath Tonics on the party in preparation of increased Void Power. !Combine
can be good for Slow Cannon if you find Enuo's quantity of attacks unbearable.

The Power of the Void is increasing!

There is now more of nothing. Or possibly the nothing is more powerful. Enuo
is truly powerful. Socrates said: "The only true wisdom is in knowing you know
nothing." and Mark Twain said: "Against the assault of laughter nothing can
stand." The Buddha said: "To live a pure unselfish life, one must count nothing
as one's own in the midst of abundance.". So our foe is a truly wise altruist
who has moved past frivolities. Don't think this is all talk about some
philosophical abstract either. As Voltaire said, a witty remark proves nothing.

Enuo
Level: 97, HP: 60000, MP: 65000
Defense: 100, Magic Defense: 30
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 120%
Steal: Bone Mail (rare)
Status: (Always) Protect, (Always) Shell
Creature: Heavy
Vulnerable to:nothing
Attacks: !Dimension Zero, Holy, Flare, Meteor, Level 3 Flare, Level 4 Graviga,
 Level 5 Death, Drain Touch, Deep Freeze, Meltdown, Almagest, Grand Cross,
 Danse Macabre, Reaper's Sword, White Whole, Hurricane, Mealstrom

Enuo has restored its HP back to 60000 HP, and with inherent Protect and
Shell set, removing it will be quite a chore. On the upside, Enuo has done
away with the two tentacles, which means !Rapid Fire greatly increased in
accuracy. On the downside, it'll only deal half damage compared to the first
round.

When Enuo has regenerated himself, he'll start off with a brutal double-turn
which may feature !Dimension Zero, Meteor or Almagest (equal chance) followed
by either !Dimension Zero, White Hole or Maelstrom. If Golem was up, he
could have taken a single !Dimension Zero. When all that is past and you're
still standing, Enuo is now done with you. He'll cast according to the
following loop:

- !Dimension Zero, Meteor or Almagest
  !Dimension Zero, White Hole or Maelstrom
-  Flare, Holy or Delta Attack
-  Almagest (66%) or Grand Cross (33%)
-  Drain Touch, Deep Freeze or Meltdown
-  Level 3 Flare, Level 4 Graviga or Level 5 Death
- !Dimension Zero
   (loop)

Enuo even has interesting counter-attacks! Whenever he suffers damage, he'll
counter with either White Hole (33%), Danse Macabre (33%) or nothing. Every
even time he is damaged, he counters with Reaper's Sword (33%), Hurricane
(33%) or nothing. Reaper's Sword kills any character without a Ribbon. White
Hole kills and petrifies any character without a Ribbon. Danse Macabre sets
Zombie to any character without an Angel Ring. See why you want those items?

Enuo is difficult to damage at this point, as all damage is halved. You
cannot remove Protect or Shell, and Enuo is now immune even to Slow. It's
a true slugfest, this fight. There are a few attacks that will prove much
more powerful than the others. Above and beyond the competition is !Rapid
Fire with Flare Spellblade effects applied. Second, when !Finisher calls for
an elemental attack, the 9999 damage will not be affected by any kind of
damage inhibitor, but this is a 50% chance at best. Should you have a !Mix
user with doubled HP from a Goliath's Tonic, any mix that deals (current HP)
damage will be quite powerful compared to other powerful attacks. Some
examples include Holy Breath (Holy Water + Dragon Fang) and Dragon Breath
(two Dragon Fangs). Finally, Needle Cannon will deal 3000 damage. This is
not a lot, but it's still probably more than normal magical attacks and
since Slow Cannon is a such a help in the first fight, it's not unreasonable
to assume that you have !Combine around.

If you failed to bring the Angel Rings, you'll have a fun time removing
Zombie from characters only to find yourself stuck with low-HP characters
while Enuo rains destruction upon your sorry ass. If you failed to equip
Ribbons on certain characters, please enjoy them going down almost
continuously. If you did both, it's still a decent fight Enuo puts up;
Almagest is powerful, !Dimension Zero is powerful, a stray Level # Blue spell
may fuck you up completely. Only a combination of Mighty Guard, Goliath's
Tonics for everybody and prime numbers on your level will truly keep you
safe.

When Enuo falls, he falls hard. There's an earthquake in space, then there
are explosions in space. Worst. Final. Battle. Ever. Note that while this
battle is very reminiscent of the battle versus Exdeath, Enuo does not
respawn after you kill him once.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.55.1  The Dark Arts
**********************************

When you awaken, you find yourself near a crystal shard. Since all other
options are prohibited at the moment, pick it up. Prisoned within the shard
is the deliciously evil spirit of an ancient Necromancer 'hero'.

The Necromancer equips Rods and Knives, Hats, Robes and Armlets like any
typical mage-type Job, and all of his Dark Arts are based off the
Necromancer's Magic Power. He's got comparable Magic Power to a Black Mage;
quite decent and just a bit lower than the Summoner and the Oracle. What's
noteworthy about the Necromancer is his Strength (a small bonus compared to
vanilla Freelancer) which is completely useless and his Stamina, which is
very high for a Robe-type; higher even than the Knight! Not quite the luxury
you might imagine, though...

The Necromancer is inherently quasi-Undead, sort of. He takes damage from
all kinds of healing attacks; Cure/Cura/Curaga, Nightingale, all types of
potions, you name it. Drain attacks such as Drain, Vampire and Drain Kiss
invert when the target is a Necromancer. He is in all regards like a
regular Undead creature or like a character wearing a Bone Mail, but there
is one very important difference; the Necromancer's reaction to revival
items, spells and attacks. They'll never kill a Necromancer when one is
alive; they'll just set HP to a single digit. If Necromancer is down, you CAN
revive him or her; Arise will set HP to full, Phoenix will set HP and MP
back to full, you name it. This is an important benefit over Bone Mail-type
of turning Undead.

The Necromancer can therefor be healed by: White Wind, using draining moves
WITH the Necromancer, using draining moves ON the Necromancer and simply
reviving the Necromancer when he's down and out.

The Chaos Orb is an Accessory that raises Fire, Ice and Lightning-elemental
damage by 50% and gives inherent Regen and some Magic Defense. This frees
up a weapon for another purpose than elemental boosting, so you'll probably
want to end up with a Main Gauche unless you set a "Equip X" support ability
for who knows what reason. But it's not that good. Main Gauche gives 33%
an additional physical evasion check. By using a Protect Ring and a Magus
Rod, you've got the Air- and Poison-elemental boosted, more Magic Defense,
way more Defense and better Regen healing, I'd say you can forget all about
that Chaos Orb.

Dark Arts are sweet. Their main purpose is to blanket the enemy party in
powerful elemental mayhem that kills. Drain Touch, Dark Haze and Curse are
just to have a bit of fun. All elemental spells are equally strong; Dark
Flare piercies Magic Defense like Flare does and Doomsday is just the
strongest attack. If you boost elements, the more easily acquired elemental
attacks are way stronger than either Dark Flare or Doomsday, so when you
learn Hellwind you already learned the best attack the Necromancer will
ever use!

For more information on the Necromancer, take a look at [NECROMANCER-LINK]

It is now time to travel the lands to collect all of the Dragonballs. I mean,
all of the clues that uncover the location of the Holy Grail. I mean, the
Dark Arts. There's a Mindflayer right in front of you to kick things off!

Drain Touch
Anyway, there's a Mindflayer patiently waiting for its demise at the hands
of a Necromancer. Set !Summon or !Black on the Necromancer and kill the
Mindflayer with an attack coming from a Necromancer. You just learned Drain
Touch, an unblockable HP-draining attack almost twice as strong as the Black
Drain spell. A fun note about the Drain Touch attack is that it's the only
HP-draining attack that does not invert effects on an Undead target. If you
fail to kill the Mindflayer in an adequate manner, you can either seek out
another Mindflayer in the Interdimensional Rift or confront a The Damned in
the Island Shrine.

Hellwind
Push the button to leave this place. Take the airshupmarine to Bal Castle and
enter the basement, where Objet d'Art roam the place. Have a Necromancer cast
Level 5 Death or a boosted Thundaga spell to kill one or all living statues.
You just learned Hellwind! It's Air-elemental (boost with Magus Rod or Air
Knife) and sets Petrify on whatever is strange enough to both survive the
damage onslaught and is vulnerable to Petrify. Behemoth Kings or something,
whatever. You could also choose to hunt down a Stingray for Hellwind.

Note: there are five Dark Arts that combine elemental damage with the chance
of a status ailment being set. The elemental damage is unblockable, but the
status ailment isn't. The status ailment is set when the target is vulnerable
to the ailment and when a random number between 0 and 99 is smaller than the
target's Magic Evasion%. So versus a target with 75% Magic Evasion, Hellwind
and its kin will inflict their status ailment 25% of the time.

Evil Mist
Only a short walk to the north of Castle Bal lies Quelb. Pass it up and enter
Drakenvale to the north. In the caves you can find a Zombie Dragon. Kill it
with a Phoenix Down of Hellwind spell and you'll learn Evil Mist, the Poison-
elemental version of Hellwind that, gasp thrice, sets Poison to whatever it
doesn't slay outright. Nothing worth caring about is specifically weak to
Poison, but it's a fun spell to use regardless. Evil Mist can also be learned
from the Unknown (blob) from the Great Sea Trench.

Dark Flare
Hey, one of the two 'ultimate' Dark Arts! Go to Kuza Castle and heal up. Make
sure you got no problem dealing with either Shield Dragons nor Exdeath's
Souls. The latter is the one we're hunting. If you run into one, remember it
has 20000 HP and that you'll want to get the final blow for your Necromancer.
Hellwind works wonders. Dark Flare pierces Magic Defense and is non-elemental;
not as powerful as boosted elemental attacks but a bit more powerful than
non-boosted elemental attacks. If you have Bahamut blow up the place, it's
more powerful than Dark Flare but a bit more costly on your MP. You won't see
much use for Dark Flare in practice unless you want to clear the place of
Crystelles or something.

Dark Haze
Where did you park your Black Chocobo? I always leave mine near Phantom
Village. Anyway, go seek it out and travel to the forest near North Mountain
and the Phoenix Tower. Dismount your Black Chocobo and enter the Phoenix
Tower. Scout around for a Lemure and kill it with some Hellwind to learn
Dark Haze. Dark Haze deals no damage, but is simple a blockable spell that
sets both Confuse and Old. Exorays from the Sealed Temple can also teach
you Dark Haze.

Meltdown
In that very same Phoenix Tower, you get to encounter Liquid Flame randomly
when you search the walls for stairs going up. If you encounter one, kill it
with some repetitive Evil Mist and Hellwind spells to learn Meltdown, the
Fire-elemental one. It's ST only, though, which makes it inferior to Hellwind.
It may set... Sap. Honestly? You could also learn Meltdown from Claret Dragon,
though nobody will want to.

We still got four more attacks; Deep Freeze (ST Ice-elemental attacks that
sets Stop), Chaos Drive (MT Lightning-elemental attack that sets Paralyze),
Curse which sets all kinds of status ailments to a single target and Doomsday,
the ultimate Dark Art. All four spells can only be learned in the Sealed
Temple, so now it's time to get those Dark Arts to you quickly.

You're on the Overworld Map presumably, so it's time to get back to the
Sealed Temple and kick Omega Mk. II technological teeth in and follow that
succes up with Neo Shinryu's destruction. South of the forest where the Phantom
Village is located, you'll see the trench. You'll automatically enter the
strange place when you submarine your way down. The NPC that initially told you
about the Necromancer Job is still there, randomly spewing out hints on the
monsters that can teach you Dark Arts.

You need to press the skull button to get to the other plane, location or
dimension, whereever it is you're going. When you've done so, you can enter the
Sealed Temple to the left.

I'm going to give you real quick directions to the Hall of Tranquility, from
where you can start your mission to kill the last two baddies of the game.

- From the start of the Sealed Temple, walk south and enter the middle doors,
  the ones you had to unlock earlier.
- In the Arena, stick to the outer wall until you reach the middle chamber
  where you fought the Grand Aevis. Go up and follow the path until you reach
  the stairs going down, and follow them into the Heart of Ronka's Treasure
  Room. If you meet any Assassins along the way, you can learn Deep Freeze from
  them if a Necromancer kills them. If you meet any Mini Satanas, they can
  teach you Chaos Drive.
- In the Treasure Room, go south 'til you reach the first split, then walk to
  the left, then south again to reach the Heart of Ronka, B1. If you meet any
  Exoray, your Necromancer can learn Dark Haze from them.
- Walk to the south until you reach the chest puzzle. Put the heavy stone in
  the bottom-left chest and enter the door that opens. Follow the path into
  B2.
- Walk a bit south and to the left, past the rotating chain lift. You see
  the long staircase; find the entrance and descend the staircase down into
  the Abyssal Falls B1.
- Go down 'til you reach B2.
- In B2, walk to the left until you find the waterfall that blocks your path.
  Make sure you can Dash out of battle, then push the skull button and run
  past the waterfall while it's disabled. You can then continue into the Hall
  of Tranquility.
- The teleport zone below the NPC will take you to the Lethe Court. In the
  first room, you have a 35% chance of finding an Ironclad, which will teach
  you Curse when you kill it with a Necromancer. The rare encounter is Hades,
  which will teach you the most powerful Dark Art, Doomsday.

Deep Freeze is an ST Ice-elemental attack that may set Stop and Chaos Drive is
an MT Lightning-elemental attack that may set Paralyze. Curse may set any one
of the following status ailments: Toad, Mini, Poison, Darkness, Old, Sleep,
Confuse, Berserk, Silence or HP Leak. Since it picks one prior to checking for
status immunities, it's completely useless. Doomsday is a very powerful attack,
but it does not pierce Magic Defense like Dark Flare does and is often less
powerful than Dark Flare, let alone boosted elemental spells.

When you're done, get back to the Hall of Tranquility and Cottage up, since
we're going dumpster-diving into Omega Mk. II's lair. Enter the pyramid to
the left. You'll find yourself in the Incubi's Path. Oh man, why can't we
ever find ourselves in, I dunno, the Chocolate Cake Path?

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.56.1  The Undeathables; Omega Mk. II
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Mecha Head (#150), Necromancer (#223), Mini Satana (#229), Medusa (#238),
  Dinozombie (#239), Omega Mk. II

  Container contents:
  Ash x2, Blitzshot x2, Dark Matter x2, Demon's Rod, Elixir, Hero Cocktail,
  Holy Water

  Miscellaneous items:
  Force Shield (guaranteed Omega Mk. II drop)

  Blue spells:
  Flame Thrower, Missile

  Dark Arts:
  Chaos Drive

Time for some Rage against the Machine.

  Tomb of Memory - Incubi's Path:
  35 % Dinozombie, Mecha Head
  35 % Medusa, Mini Satana
  23 % Medusa x2
   6 % Dinozombie, Necromancer

This is a very simple stroll through the pyramid park. By that I mean that the
directions are easy. Patrolling around the scene are... Omegas. There is no
narrative explanation for this. Omega is supposed to be a one of a kind
creature. Maybe all of these are cheap duplicates, made in Taiwan and all that.
They're equally effecive as the real deal though.

I highly suggest destroying all the Omega machines prior to exploring the
rest of the cavern. For detailed explanation, try [OMEGA-LINK], even though
you probably know how to handle him. You kill one of these by setting Thundaga
Spellblade effects to a Dual-Wield !Rapid Fire character. Hermes Sandals on
that guy or girl help out. Don't attack him in the meantime, he'll just
counter. Don't forget to equip a Ribbon on your !Rapid Fire cannon, else Delta
Attack or Blaster may seriously hamper your plans for Omega domination.

Every Omega gives you 100 ABP, and you only need a single specialized character
to take out Omega within two rounds. Something to think about. Do note that
when you try to level up Oracles or something, they won't be able to equip
Ribbons and may fall to status ailment attacks.

There are six Omega machines running around here, the lot of which contributes
a total of 600 ABP and 300000 Gil unto your party.

In the meantime, you may encounter monsters randomly as well, and Medusa enemies
are new. They are quite frail for Sealed Temple monsters, standing at a mere
7500 HP. They use Entice a lot, which sets Confuse. Earlier Lamia-type enemies
only targeted male characters with the move, but these girls appreciate beauty
in all its forms. They counter damage with a 1/3 chance at Evil Eye, which may
set Petrify on those characters not equipped with a Ribbon.

Rainbow Dresses are good in this place, since Ribbons don't protect against
Confuse but Rainbow Dresses do.

When you've cleared the floor of Omega copies, it's time for treasure! Start
at the entrance and see the hidden passage to your left. It contains Ash.
Return to the entrance. Go up and stick to the right wall to come across another
hidden passage which leads you to a chest containing an Elixir. Return to the
main chamber. Ignore the exit for now and continue to find the chest with a
Demon's Rod. It's a useless piece of crap that randomly casts Death but doesn't
boost any elements.

Now, you see the exit to your right. Go there!

  Tomb of Memory - Decedent's Path:
  35 % Necromancer, Archeosaur
  35 % Mini Satana x2
  23 % Medusa, Lamia Queen x2
   6 % Dinozombie

Right at the start, go all the way up to find a button. Push it to remove the
magical barrier that kept you from visiting Neo Shinryu. But first things
first; bionic bros before dragon hoes is what I always say. Get back to the
entrance. You see a hidden passage to your right, but don't go there; there's
just a pit that'll take you to the River of Souls, and nobody goes there
anymore. Go to the left to find another button you can pass up; it'll create
a sandstream that sweeps you back to the main chamber of the Incubi's Path.
The button in the far right will open up a passage in the Incubi's Path, so
push it, then push the button you just passed up, to the left. Find the newly
opened door, then enter.

  Tomb of Memory - Iniquity's Path:
  35 % Dinozombie, Medusa
  35 % Dinozombie
  23 % Medusa, Mini Satana
   6 % Medusa x3

A lot of hidden passages here. Find the one to the bottom-right, then follow
it to come across a chest containing some Dark Matter. Follow it further for
some useless rooms and a Blitzshot chest. Return to the start of the hidden
passage. Now, go to the left where you previously went right to find a chest
with a Hero Cocktail (watch out for the hole!) go into the hidden passage to
the left of the chest to reach another chest with some Dark Matter. You have
now raided this floor fully, so drop down any hole you please. Let's pick one
right here.

  Tomb of Memory - Throne Room:
  35 % Medusa, Necromancer x2
  35 % Dinozombie
  23 % Medusa x3
   6 % Dinozombie

This is the weirdest Throne Room I've ever seen, mostly because there is no
throne. You find yourself near a chest containing some more Ash. Go north for
a new chest featuring a Blitzshot. The top button will open up a door so you
can continue. Also press the other one. Slide down the tiny slippery slope
and continue to the right; do ignore the second slippery slope as you'll be
stuck and will have to walk back. To the bottom-right, there is a chest
containing a Holy Water. Up, there's a door you opened with that other button
just now which takes you to another button. This one opens up the door in the
middle, which leads to... Omega Mk. II.

Omega Mk. II
Level: 97, HP: 65000, MP: 60000
Defense: 200, Magic Defense: 200
Evasion: 100%, Magic Evasion: 100%
Steal: Elixir (rare)
Win: Force Shield (always)
Absorbs: (Fire, Ice, Lightning), Poison, Holy, Earth, Wind, Water
Weakness: (Fire, Ice, Lightning)
Status: (Always) Reflect, Shell
Creature: Heavy
Vulnerable to: Slow, Stop
Attacks:

When you took Omega down, maybe somebody somewhere was looking at you. We
are not alone. Omega was a perfect killing machine, with only two weakness.
An emotional weakness to Romeo's Ballad, but you can't change a soul. Then
there was Thundaga Spellblade !Rapid Fire, which functions like a Five Point
Palm Exploding Heart Technique. And this is what was upgraded.

Omega Mk. II has some higher stats than its prototype, most notably higher HP.
Its AI script is mostly identical, with the exception of his new software
which allows it to respond to !Rapid Fire.

- First turn only: Barrier Change
- 33% chance of either Atomic Ray, Delta Attack or Blaster
- Wave Cannon
- 33% chance of either Rainbow Wind, Flame Thrower or Atomic Ray
- Wave Cannon
- No interrupt:
  33% chance of either Delta Attack, Blaster or Wave Cannon
  33% chance of either Maelstrom, Earthquake or Rainbow Wind
- Search (save target until end next turn)
- 33% chance of either Rainbow Wind, Flame Thrower or Atomic Ray (on Search
  target)
- Wave Cannon
  (loop)

Counterattack to Fire, Ice or Lightning element when its currently weak
against it:
- No interrupt:
  Barrier Change
  (change to either Fire, Ice or Lightning weakness)

Counterattack to !Rapid Fire:
- 33% chance of (Full HP heal), Encircle or nothing
  (since !Rapid Fire hits multiple times but may only provoke two counters at
  most, this counter is executed twice)

Counterattack to all HP damage:
- No interrupt:
  Target: Random target
  33% chance of either Rocket Punch, Rocket Punch or Mustard Bomb
  33% chance of either Rocket Punch, Rocket Punch or Encircle

So he functions like Omega, but when you hit it with an elemental attack that
strikes its weakness, it changes form into any of its three forms. It's either
weak to Fire, Ice or Lightning. When !Rapid Fire is used and it's not fatal,
Omega Mk. II  may either respond with Encircle (bad) or a nameless full HP
restorative move. I guess it has something to do with nanobots, I dunno.

So the mission here is to set up either Firaga, Blizzaga or Thundaga spellblade
on a Dual-Wield character. That takes at least two turns, and Omega Mk. II
is wicked fast. Second, we need to know which element we want and make sure
we don't provoke a Barrier Change before the properly applied elemental is
unloaded upon Omega Mk. II's sorry ass.

Reflect Rings across the team protect against Delta Attack, Atomic Ray and
Search. In addition, you can cast Libra on one of your characters to find out
Omega Mk. II's current elemental weakness. Flame Rings on everbody is possibly
an ever better option since you absorb Atomic Ray and Flamethrower and you can
still cast Curaga and Mighty Guard, but you'll have to have !Scan if you
want to discover how to hurt Omega Mk. II since you can't target Omega Mk. II
with Scan spells. 

With either Flame Rings or Reflect Rings combined with Ribbons and Float, all
that can really hurt you is Wave Cannon. As long as you use nothing but !Rapid
Fire, the regular counters won't appear. With at least two characters with
either Curaga or White Wind (Curaga is not an option with Reflect Rings), you
can simply outlast Omega Mk. II's attacks. If you can check its elemental
weakness, apply the relevant one and let loose with !Rapid Fire. If not, you
can just try 'til you get it right. It's possible that Omega Mk. II survives
the first !Rapid Fire, but if it's of the proper element the Barrier Change
counter will take precedence over the Encircle/full heal counter. You can then
attack it with the proper !Rapid Fire a second time, thus ending Omega Mk. II.

Flame Rings with !Scan is really the best. If you bring Omega Mk. II to
near death with a good !Rapid Fire, then heal it a bit with a wrong !Rapid Fire
it may respond with a full heal or Encircle, which could remove your !Rapid
Fire character from the fight. If you go in with Reflect Rings, Flame Thower
plus Wave Cannon may kill a character, also bad news.

   iOS/Android: !Scan don't work! It's Reflect + Libra for you, since that 
   does work.

You get a Force Shield out of the deal. It's got superior Defense and nullifies
all elemental attacks, which is just grand. No, really, it's super-awesome.
Imagine nullifying Holy, Almagest, Firaga and all that. I highly suggest you
use it if you have any Shieldbearers in your party; it's a good combo with the
Mirage Vest. The downside of the Force Shield is its lack of Evasion; during
a random encounter, you're unlikely to absorb more than a single physical hit
on any character, and the Mirage Vest will allow you to dodge it.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.56.2  The Undeathables; Neo Shinryu
**********************************

  Opponents:
  Shield Dragon (#86), Blue Dragon (#132), Red Dragon (#133), Yellow Dragon
  (#134), Great Dragon (#212), Dragon Aevis (#215), Crystal Dragon (#222),
  Claret Dragon (#240), Neo Shinryu (#322)

  Container contents:
  Ash x2, Blastshot, Blitzshot x2, Elixir x2, Flame Scroll x2, Lightning
  Scroll, Maximillian, Phoenix Down, Ribbon, Ultima Weapon

  Miscellaneous items:
  Artemis Bow (rare Dragon Aevis steal), Dragon Lance (rare Crystal Dragon
  steal)

  Blue magic:
  Level 3 Flare, Flame Thrower

  Dark Arts:
  Meltdown

We can't stop here. This is dragon country.

  Entryway:
  35 % Red Dragon, Yellow Dragon, Blue Dragon
  35 % Great Dragon, Dragon Aevis
  23 % Shield Dragon x2
   6 % Crystal Dragon

You should be familiar with all enemies here. All enemies here with the
exception of Great Dragon and Dragon Aevis have the Dragon nature, so Dragon
Lances, Apollo's Harp and Dragon Cannon (Blitzshot + Dragon Fang) inflict a
lot of damage. Shield Dragons can be problematic. !Rapid Fire with one or more
Dragon Lances will help dispatch them quickly. Crystal Dragons are best
dispatched with Death Potions. Flame Rings can help you throughout the dungeon;
Red Dragon's Atomic Ray, Blue Dragon's Frost, Great Dragon's Blaze and Claret
Dragon's Flame Thrower are all absorbed or negated.

Make sure to have Float set, we'll have to cross some lava before we're done
here. Having mastered a Geomancer on a single character and using him or her
as a Freelancer or Mime will also do the trick. Actually using a Geomancer
will have such negative impact in-battle you're better off just soaking up the
lava.

First off, let's go up a bit and then continue to the right. Pass the skull
button for now, and go up and to the right to reach a chest containing an
Elixir! Now, it's time to raid the Treasure Room before we push on towards
Neo Shinryu. The Treasure Room is below us. Push the skeleton button you
passed a few seconds ago to fall to the floor below.

Treasure Room
35 % Red Dragon, Yellow Dragon, Blue Dragon
35 % Shield Dragon x2
23 % Crystal Dragon
6  % Claret Dragon

You fall one a long stretch of stone. If you go to the left, you'll wind up
in a place where you can ascend to the Entryway, but we just got here! Enter
the lava lake by going right and finding the stairs leading into the molten
rock. In the middle is a large platform with ten chests waiting for you. In it
(from top-left to bottom right): a Flame Scroll, a Lightning Scroll, a 
Maximillian, some Ash, another Flame Scroll, a Phoenix Down, a Blitzshot, an 
Elixir, a Blastshot and some more Ash.

The Maximillian is mostly a better Genji Armor, as it gives more Defense and
Magic Defense. It doesn't protect against any status ailments like the Genji
Armor does, though.

Return to the thin stretch of rock you landed on, and go counter-clockwise
this time around. When you can leave this place do so, since there's nothing
more to be found here.

When you return to the Entryway, you'll find another skeleton button on this
very rock island. Push it to connect a small chest-carrying island to a more
accessible location. Leave this island by entering the lava and go to the right,
where you can eventually (a bit up) find a staircase up the rock formation to
the right. Find the chest to the bottom (Blitzshot) and simply backtrack,
ignoring the island with the skeleton button and sticking to the outer wall.
You'll pass that closed chest. When you can leave the lava at the far left,
do so. You should recognize this location, you've been here before. To the
south-east, the chest is waiting for you. It's a Ribbon!

We've taken all the treasure here. Remember where you just got out of the lava?
Get back in there and go back to the far right, sticking to the outer wall.
When at the far right you can get out of the lava, don't do so. Pass the
staircase and go further north, where you can find an entrance into Shinryu's
Roost.

Shinryu's Roost
35 % Red Dragon, Yellow Dragon, Blue Dragon
42 % Claret Dragon
23 % Crystal Dragon, Dragon Aevis

It's unlikely you'll fight many battles here, since all you'll have to do here
is walk straight on 'til you reach the CHEST. You should prepare for the CHEST,
since its contents may surprise you. Or not, since there's a Neo Shinryu in
there and now you know that.

(Neo Shinryu) (Attacks, always Invulnerable)
Level: 97
Status: Invulnerable (Always)
Attacks: Attack, !Critical Attack, Mute, Mighty Guard, Almagest, Blaze, Breath
 Wing, Earthquake, Ice Storm, Lightning, Maelstrom, Poison Breath, Tidal Wave,
 Zombie Breath

Neo Shinryu (Counter-attacks, toggles Invulnerable)
Level: 97, HP: 65000, MP: 60000
Defense: 100, Magic Defense: 100
Evasion: 20%, Magic Evasion: 120%
Steal: Elixir (rare)
Absorbs: Holy
Creature: Dragon, Heavy
Vulnerable to: Darkness, Silence, Slow
Attacks: Meteor, Doom, Giga Flare, White Hole, Zombie Powder, (Fake Image)

Neo Shinryu doesn't kiss nice. He's a real bad-ass kind of dragon. He goes
from 0 to murder in under 8 seconds. If your having a really shitty day, it's
this thing's fault somehow. Don't fight him. This is HIS game, and the only
way to win is not to play. Or play really well I suppose, that also works. But
he's way difficult, you should know that. He's the mostest difficult. This
dragon makes the Dalai Lama say very bad words.

Okay, here's the thing. Neo Shinryu has a lot of attacks. A lot of them will
kill you. By healing and reviving alone, you can't outlast him and still deal
sufficient damage. So the defensive strategy doesn't work. At the same time,
Neo Shinryu has this shtick where he randomly cancels out your attacks. In
addition, he has three dummy targets, which will randomly absorb your randomly
targetted !Rapid Fire and Meteor attacks (among others). So the offensive
strategy also doesn't work. What does work? The super-defensive and the ultra-
offensive strategy! More on that after the break.

First I want to talk about Neo Shinryu's random negation of your attacks. This
is what will happen. First off, Neo Shinryu has three dummy targets; we've seen
this douchebaggery before with Enuo, among others. It severly cripples your
chances with !Rapid Fire to the point where !Attack has a higher average
damage output due to all the missing !Rapid Fire will do. This also means that
the Meteor spell, !Released monsters and other random-target attacks will have
a 75% chance of striking a dummy target.

Second, Neo Shinryu itself will randomly troll you out of well-deserved damage
output. Here's how that happens. Forget about two of the dummy targets, they're
not important now. There are two Neo Shinryu enemies. One is the one in charge
of attacking every round; this one is immune to damage, always, so it's
essentially a third dummy target that also attacks. It's invulnerable like
Necrophobe when surrounded by his Barriers, or like an invisible dummy target.
Second, there's the Neo Shinryu that is in charge of counters; this one toggles
its invulnerability states every turn, and it moves like greased lightning. You
won't be able to keep up or track his turns; to your inferior human naked eye,
you'll never know if this Neo Shinryu is vulnerable to damage or not until you
try. Neo obviously does not take turns when a character has just cast Quick, so
during those two turns Neo Shinryu is either vulnerable to both attacks or
immune to both attacks. When wielding two weapons, either both strike a
vulnerable target or neither; this goes for !Jump with two weapons as well.

So, since the vulnerable part of Neo Shinryu toggles its invulnerability at
every turn, it can be said to have a 50% chance of letting your attacks inflict
damage. A random-target attack must face its three dummy targets and thus
has only a 12.5% chance of inflicting damage. When Neo Shinry is vulnerable,
it has a 25% chance of connecting, but the player won't have this information
until it first sees damage appear. If you fight Neo Shinryu a couple of times
in a row like yours truly did, you'll get a knack for the flow of this battle;
you see an attack deal no damage, you wait a bit and then unleash hell for a
great chance of finding Neo Shinryu vulnerable.

So in conclusion, there are four targets, only one can ever be damaged and this
target toggles its invulnerability every turn. Cute!

Neo Shinryu, having set up these defensive perimeters, will do the following.
It'll start off with Mighty Guard, which cuts down any hits you DO land by 50%.
A Judgment Staff or Dispel spell is needed to counter. Then, the following
AI script will loop:

- Maelstrom
- 33% chance of either Ice Storm, Ice Storm or Blaze
- Zombie Breath
- 33% chance of either Earthquake, Earthquake or Lightning
- No Interrupt:
  Attack
  Attack
- 33% chance of either Poison Breath, Poison Breath or Breath Wing
- Curse
- 33% chance of either Tidal Wave, Tidal Wave or Almagest
  (loop)

When you bring Neo Shinryu down to 15000 HP or less, it'll cast Mute and switch
to physical attacks only.

- No Interrupt:
  33% chance of either Attack, Attack or !Critical Attack
  33% chance of either Attack, Attack or !Critical Attack
- No Interrupt:
  33% chance of either Attack, !Critical Attack or Nothing
  33% chance of either Attack, !Critical Attack or Nothing
  33% chance of either Attack, !Critical Attack or Nothing
  (loop)

Note that all of these attacks are executed by the continuously invulnerable
Neo Shinryu. The Neo Shinryu you hurt will never attack, just toggle its
invulnerability and employ counter-attacks. When struck by !Rapid Fire, it
may counter a 33% chance of either Zombie Powder, Doom or nothing. Since
!Rapid Fire is most inaccurate already and there's no room for Angel Rings in
our set-up, that means !Rapid Fire is pretty much the worst attack to use
versus Neo Shinryu ever. Any other damaging move may provoke a 33% shot at
White Hole, but with Ribbons in place it will have no effect.

When you kill Neo Shinryu, it'll have two last aces up its sleeve; Giga Flare
and Meteor. It'll cast both, in that order, as a final counter-attack. These
attacks are not as strong as most of NS' attacks, but should still be in the
back of your mind when you're approaching Neo Shinryu's demise. Giga Flare
deals about 1500 damage to a non-Shelled party.

It all looks fairly managable, but until you've seen the terrifying competence
and speed that accompany these attacks, the dread will start. Luckily for you,
we at Djibriel Enterpresis have constructed not one but two strategies to
employ. They've done studies, you know. 15% of the time, they work EVERY time.
We guarantee it.

Dragoons Execute Airborne Tactics Hopefully (or D.E.A.T.H.):

Neo Shinryu is a Dragon. The 'strategy' here is to set up four characters with
Dual-Wield and two Dragon Lances, Hermes Sandals, !Jump and !Time 6. You cast
Quick, then launch your terrified combatants into the air. Due to Quick, you
won't have to suffer ATB increase while your character plunges screaming towards
his or her doom. There's a 50% chance that landing will deal a lot of damage.
If so, you can !Jump again. If not, your next !Jump will fail as well, so you
might as well cast Hastega, heal or revive if necessary. Cue the next character!
You can have one character not use Quick so he or she is in the air when Giga
Flare/Meteor appears. Also note this front-loaded team can use Dispel by
equipping the Judgment Staff mid-battle.

This is a high-risk, high-reward strategy, and likely the cause of the
infuriating "Lolz Neo Shinryu is 2 Ezy" shout-outs across the internet. Note
that this strategy requires a lot of Dragon Lances and characters knowing
!Time 6, !Jump and Dual-Wield, which is not at all the case for everybody.
In addition, you have straw for defenses here, so Neo Shinryu will rip you some
interesting new holes when he gets the chance. He'll get those chances a lot.

Chemists Outlast Wyrm's Endless Rampage (or C.O.W.E.R.):

The polar opposite of the strategy listed above, this turtle-like defensive
strategy is almost sure to work and demands much more reasonable parameters.
The basic idea is to postpone offense until you're so hopped up on buffs that
you can casually trade blows with Neo Shinryu. Since his arsenal is so
incredibly diverse, that requires a lot of buffs. Enter with Coral Rings
and Ribbons. The Force Shield will be a tremendous benefit; have the character
most adept at buffing (ideally a !Time/!Mix Freelancer) equip it. Ice Shields
for the others, they will nullify Ice Storm and Blaze. Since Defense and Magic
Defense mean almost nothing in this fight, the Mirage Vest is a great equip.

!Blue and !Time are just incredibly useful here, but !Mix is without a doubt
the most important skillset. !Blue is only used for White Wind and Mighty
Guard. !Time is used for Quick, Hastega and, in a pinch, Float. !Mix is used
for these things:

Potion        + Ether          X-Potion
Potion        + Phoenix Down   Resurrection
Ether         + Dragon Fang    Dragon Shielding
Elixir        + Dragon Fang    Goliath Tonic
Maiden's Kiss + Dragon Fang    Dragon Kiss

Right. From the get-go, Ribbons are in place to protect you from White Hole
(a counter) and most everything that Curse has to offer. With Ice Shields and
Coral Rings, you've also taken care of Ice Storm, Blaze and Tidal Wave. Dragon
Shielding helps to absorb Blaze and Lightning. Goliath Tonic helps survive
damage from Zombie Breath, Breath Wing and Almagest. Dragon Kiss gives immunity
to Maelstrom.

Try to keep Mighty Guard up at all times; it reduces damage by a lot and its
Float prevents a Game Over from Earthquake. Second, Goliath Tonic is top
priority. The doubled HP will stay with you even if you fall, which you will do
a lot. Dragon Shielding and Dragon Kiss protect you against 2 out of 8 turns,
these being the Ice Storm/Blaze turn and the Mealstrom turn. Note that your
Force Shield character doesn't need Dragon Shielding.

Reviving (and curing Zombie) should always take priority over healing, healing
should always take priority over buffing. You will gradually gain more and
more turns during which Neo Shinryu performs an attack you can just ignore.
Make no mistake, you will die all the time. But you can always revive with full
HP and MP, and those that have both !Time and !Mix can revive two characters
in one turn. Your Force Shield character can only die from physical attacks. All
buffs except for Mighty Guard will remain with the character even when he or
she dies.

Eventually, you will have a party with massive HP, Shelled across the board.
Only physical attacks, Breath Wing, Tidal Wave and Almagest will still leave
a mark, but they can be healed with White Wind. Stray physicals may still kill
a character even with Protect and Goliath Tonic active, but they're quickly
revived. It is now time for offense!

It will be a slow process, since you really only have !Attack to work with.
Give Apollo's Harp to a Quick caster; Dragon Lances work okay even without
!Jump. Since Neo Shinryu has 100 Defense, anything that doesn't automatically
score a Defense-ignoring Critical Hit will not leave a mark. 20% Evasion may
randomly be a hindrance for Dragon Lance wielders. Again, the Judgment Staff
can be used to remove Mighty Guard from Neo Shinryu.

When all is said and done and Neo Shinryu dies an unimpressive working class
death, an Ultima Weapon is yours! It's the BEST weapon. It's even a normal
Sword, so Blue Mages, Mystic Knights and Cannoneers can use it as well. It's
a sword with the power of destruction. Contrast this to the Derrida Weapon,
which only has the power of deconstruction! What a blade!

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 4.57.1  The Cloister of the Dead
**********************************

Wanna take your ridiculously overpowered gear and go take on antagonists from
the past, no fight of which is even nearly as challenging as those you've
already won? Ofcourse you do! You built up a staggering amount of hate, I can
tell. Let's kill things dead that previously we had slightly more trouble
killing dead.

Assuming you're still standing near the battered body of Neo Shinryu, here's
to get to the Cloister of the Dead. Exit Shinryu's Roost. Walk through the
lava in a couter-clockwise fashion, sticking to the outer edge, 'til you've
completed a half circle and can get out. A bit to the south-west, you can
exit Shinryu's Lair.

In the Abyssal Falls, simply walk up all the until you reach the Heart of Ronka.
In the Heart of Ronka, walk up the stairway, then turn the turner and walk
down 'til you find a rotating chain elevator. Get to the Warp Zone, where at
the top you can warp to the entrance of the Sealed Temple. Exit the Sealed
Temple, 'cuz we're done here forever now. There's a Save Point here as well.

In the ??? cavern with the NPC, you can just waltz into the middle door and
begin your 'trial'. You could go out into the real world (I mean the real world
within the game, obviously) to buy/farm some more !Mix or !Combine reagents if
you want, but it probably won't be necessary.

The bosses here are upgraded versions of the ones you fought earlier. Imagine
having fought a four-year when you yourself were four years old. Also imagine
that at your current age you meet this guy again, but now he's SIX years old.
Assuming your name is not Stephen Hawking (if so: mad propz!), this scenario
should end with a weeping toddler and some free candy. This is pretty much
how the Cloister of the Dead plays out, only minus the candy. Since I do not
wish to insult your intelligence, I will not bother to list stat blocks or
real strategies for most of these opponents, since they are by far easier than
most random encounters in the Sealed Temple. If you are curious about these
monsters, please consult the Algorithm FAQ at GameFAQs, it's quite good.

Some things that you may be interested in to know:

- All monsters in the Cloister have neither item for stealing nor dropped
  items.
- All monsters have identical AI scripts to their former selves, with the
  exception of a select few small upgrades (Cure -> Curaga)
- All monsters add to your Bestiary entry, even though they are different
  monsters. If you missed Necrophobe or Jackanapes earlier, you can now list
  their old formes in the Bestiary with the new enemies. The new enemies have
  no seperate Bestiary entry.

Suffice to say that a single !Spellblade/!Rapid Fire character and three
utility characters is the way to go. !Blue, !Mix, !Summon and !Combine all have
some merit. I like to send in characters with Ribbons, Mirage Vest and Hermes
Sandals, it's a great all-round set-up.

First wave:
                     HP:
Wing Raptor          12000
Garula               10000
Siren                14000
Forza, Magissa       16000 (Forza), 13000 (Magissa)
Gil Turtle           40000

- Have you ever exploded in a whirlwind of steel to kill a bird? If not, here's
  your chance. !Rapid Fire kills the Wing Raptor unless you're sporting
  Mythril Swords. When you spare it for a few turns and it turns into its
  defensive stance, you can humiliate it just as easily since !Rapid Fire
  ignores Defense.
- You rule, Garula drools. It's very much like the Wing Raptor fight, only
  now it's a tapir. It's vulnerable to Toad and also everything.
- Siren can cast Curaga and Thundaga rather than Cure and Thunder, but is
  otherwise the same. You can use !Rapid Fire to destroy her, or wait until
  she turns into Undead Siren and THEN use !Rapid Fire to destroy her.
- Magissa has upgraded spells like Siren did, Forza is present when the battle
  starts and Magissa's first turn is spent on an MT Regen spell, a feat no
  other foe or character is able to duplicate in the entire game. This battle
  may take more than a single turn since there's two targets, but they do not
  pose any threat.
- The wave ends with Gil Turtle. Blizzaga !Rapid Fire kills the turtle in a
  single hit when you remove Protect with the Dispel spell or Judgment Staff.
  If you decline to remove Protect, using Blizzaga !Rapid Fire twice is a good
  alternative. Watch out for Earthquake at the end, have Mighty Guard or Float
  up.

Second wave:

Preparation: one character with !Summon is really nice for the last fight of
this wave.

                     HP:
Liquid Flame         13000
Soul Cannon          30000 (Soul Cannon), 12000 (Launcher x 2)
Purobolos            6000 (x6)
Minotaur             24000
Triton/Nereid/Phobos 18000 (all three)

- Liquid Flame has the same three-form shenanigans he did when summoned by
  queen Karnak, and has the same resistances in these forms as he did back
  then. Only this time, it just means nothing. !Rapid Fire is more like !Rapid
  Extinguish in this case. Get it? Since Liquid Flame isn't Heavy, any touch
  of Blizzaga Spellblade effects will kill it instantly.
- The Soul Cannon takes a long while to charge, during which a Thundaga !Rapid
  Fire is to be executed. For funsies, you can cast Level 5 Death to destroy
  the Launchers; their increased level took them to level 50. You get 10
  Experience Points here.
- With all these targets, !Rapid Fire may not be all that effective. Or is it?
  Silence Spellblade effects makes sure these guys don't revive fallen
  comrades. A quicker solution to the Purobolos problem is to carpet-bomb
  the lot with !Combine attacks; !Summon will make them cast Curaga on
  themselves, which sets their HP to full. Zantetsuken just kills them, though.
- Versus Minotaur, Mute is set. So you can !Rapid Fire in blissfull silence.
  The Assassin's Dagger is an instant-kill versus this guy, but nobody
  cares. He didn't put any of his Essence Point in MP either, so still no
  Holy spell upon defeat.
- If there's some strange pigs in your neighborhood, who ya gonna call? If
  your answer was "Ghostbusters" rather than Odin, you're not being practical.
  Sure, Odin has none of the comedic genius of Bill Murray, but you can't
  argue with his effective brand of ultra-violence.

Third wave:

Preparation: Two or more !Time casters are really great, since the fourth
fight is Archeodemon.

                    HP:
Byblos              12000
Tyranosaur          22000
Dragon Pod          20000 (Dragon Pod), 3000 (Dragon Flower x 4)
Archeodemon         50000
Apanda              35000

- Byblos isn't Heavy and weak to Fire, so Firaga Spellblade effect kill him
  instantly.
- Tyranosaur isn't Heavy and weak to Fire, so Firaga Spellblade effect kills him
  instantly. You know, like Byblos? You'll have an easier time provoking
  its Poison Breath counter with the plethora of Holy-, Earth-, Wind- and
  Water-elemental attacks you can employ at this stage, but since you can also
  kill it instantly there is no reason to bother.
- Dragon Pod isn't Heavy and vulnerable to Death; a Death Potion (Phoenix Down
  + Dark Matter) kills it instantly. Needle Cannon (!Combine a Blitzshot with
  a Gold Needle) deals 3000 to every target on-screen, which is enough to
  kill all Dragon Flowers. An easy fight.
- Archeodemon is exactly like the fight in the Sealed Temple, and much more
  dangerous than any other fight in this or previous wave. The same strategy
  applies as when you faced it earlier; spam Meteor 'til victory. For more
  information, check the relevant section. This really is the only challenging
  fight in the entire Cloister.
- Apanda is a cakewalk. No seriously, all the hardship involved in walking
  down a hallway of cake is about as difficult to stomach is this fight is to
  win. Apanda loves fire in the face, no matter where it comes from. Is this
  burning an eternal flame? No, because the fight takes a few seconds.

Fourth wave:

Preparation: Not much this time.

                    HP:
Manticore           13000
Adamantoise         18000
Jackanapes          6000
Calofisteri         24000
Twintania           55000

- Manticore isn't Heavy or immune to Death. We now know for whom the bell
  tolls.
- Adamantoise starts with inherent Protect and Shell. A Judgment Staff makeover
  removes these effects, setting Adamantoise up for Blizzaga Spellblade death.
- Jackanapes has monstrous Defense and Magic Defense and absorbs all elements,
  making it immune to everything except what you were going to use anyway,
  this being !Rapid Fire. With 6000 HP, it's no fair fight. Lacking !Rapid Fire,
  two Needle Cannons also take care of Jackanapes.
- Calofisteri has almost no offense, so you can just pound on her with whatever.
- Twintania has no elusive item drops for you this time, so you can just wait
  until it charges for Giga Flare, then summon Odin, throw a Death Potion,
  cast Banish, etc.

Fifth wave:

Preparation:

                    HP:
Omniscient          23000
Wendigo             30000
Sandworm            18000
Atomos              25000
Halicarnassus       44444

- Omniscient will cast Return after any damaging attack that's not Magic, so
  that means we'll have to use Silence Spellblade !Rapid Fire. Omniscient is
  weak to Aeroga and Syldra's Thunderstorm. So there.
- Flare Spellblade attacks will deal massive damage to Wendigo, but lay off
  the !Rapid Fire unless you want to eat up to three Frost counters. You'll
  guess wrong quite a few times, but Wendigo doesn't really hurt you in the
  meantime and it doesn't take a lot of effective hits to bring the Wendigo
  down. Mighty Guard helps to keep Hurricane ineffecitve.
- Sandworm is very weak to Aqua Breath, but it will no longer kill it in a
  single display of bubbles. Aqua Breath does not provoke Gravity spells from
  the holes, so stick with it 'til the Sandworm falls. If you lack !Blue,
  Flare Spellblade effects deal a lot of damage as well.
- Atomos is vulnerable to Sleep; Sleep Spellblade effect !Rapid Fire will
  take care of him quickly. His Comet spells are much easier to survive as
  well, so you need not play the one-man-down game anymore.
- Halicarnassus gets angry when !Summon is used on him, so don't. All else
  is fair game; Flare Spellblade !Rapid Fire is most effective. Since Holy
  may appear, Carbuncle or Mighty Guard can be used to prevent a death.

  Final wave:

Preparation: A summoner is nice, and !Combine will really help out as well.

                    HP:
Crystals            15000 (x4)
Melusine            24000
Catastrophe         33333
Azulmagia           40000
Necrophobe          55055, 12000 (Barrier x4)

- The Crystals are not Heavy, so one Zantetsuken is all it takes. Death Potions,
  Banish or Chaos Cannon are alternatives.
- Melusine starts off weak to Fire, so if you make sure the first hit you land
  on her is a Firaga Spellblade !Rapid Fire, you'll have a OHKO on your hands.
- Catastrophe will employ Earthquake when nobody is floating, and 50 Gs when
  you are. Carbuncle can be used to repel 50 Gs easily while you pile on the
  damage.
- Azulmagia is weak to Poison-elemental attacks. Bio Spellblade !Rapid Fire
  takes him down in a single flurry.
- Necrophobe is the final battle in the Cloister of the Dead. While your !Rapid
  Fire monkey can choose any of the high-end elemental Spellblade effects
  (Firaga, Bio, Holy), Chaos Cannon be used to instantly destroy most, if not
  all, of the Barriers. Remaining Barriers can be killed with Death Potions,
  Catoblepas or whatever, as long as you remember that they are Reflective.
  When all four Barriers are gone, wait until Necrophobe takes a single turn
  (he'll cast Flash), then !Rapid Fire for great justice.

"I see you've returned safely... I assume that means you have defeated the
monster hordes, correct? Then I bestow upon you this token extolling your
triumph."

Received "Medal of Smiting"!

... and so the FAQ reader and Final Fantasy V Advance player lived happily
ever after, having been briefly diverted from the inevitability of his or
her death by the collection of this "Medal of Smiting", a fictional trophy of
no value.



                                   THE END!



**********************************
 5.0     Menus and Game Options: As boring as a concrete floor in math class
**********************************

Start menu:

New Game: Starts a new game.

Load Game: Loads any of the up to four games you've saved in the past. To
indicate what games they are, the location of saving, playtime, amount of Gil
and party status is given. When the game has been finished (i.e. the Super
Famicom and PSX final boss has been defeated and the ending has played) a white
star is present after 'File'.

Extra: These obviously only exist in the Advance release. They contain the
Bestiary and Music Player.

- Bestiary
The Bestiary allows you to see the stats of all normal monsters in the game,
including bosses. You can select any of the four save files you currently have
to view all monsters once killed at the moment of saving. A percentage is
displayed right to 'Monsters slain' to indicate your progress. Completely
filing the Bestiary bestows no in-game benefits, though a 100% FFVA Bestiary
has been known to function as a powerful aphrodisiac (not really).

Every listed monster has three stars which disappear when you've seen their
stats. They all have a number and after the name you can see exactly how many
of this species you've killed. Press action to view the monster's stats,
elemental properties, nature and status immunities.

In-game menu:

Job: Allows you to select a character for Job switching; after you've picked a
Job you'll be automatically sent to the Ability menu to select an action or
support ability, which you can skip by pressing B. You are then transported to
the Equip menu where you are either assigned 'Optimum' equipment or left to
equip your character yourself (depending on your preferences).

Ability: Allows you to select a support or action ability without changing the
Job. You are then transported to the Equip menu where you are either assigned
'Optimum' equipment or left to equip your character yourself (depending on your
preferences). Action abilities are indicated with exclamation marks (!). You
can naturally only choose abilities that you have earned, with the exception of
!Attack and !Item which are inherent to all Jobs but the Mime and which are
given automatically as options when you obtain the Mime Job.

Item: You can view your inventory here, and use restorative potions to heal HP
and remove status ailments. Tents and Cottages can only be used on the
Overworld Map or on Save Points. 'Sort' automatically sorts out your equipment
by type, a feature not present in the original SNES game. It uses the following
list:

Potions
Drinks (for !Drink and !Combine)
Reagens (for !Mix and !Combine)
Shuriken (for !Throwk and !Combine)
Gunpowder (for !Combine)
Knives (also Man-Eater)
Ninja Blades
Swords
Knightswords
Lances (also Twin Lance)
Axes/Hammers
Katanas
Rods
Staves (also Flail and Morning Star)
Bows
Harps
Whips
Bells
Moonring Blade/Rising Sun
Shields
Light Helmets
Hats
Heavy Helmets
Clothes
Robes
Heavy Armor
Gauntlets
Armlets
Shoes
Rings
Misc. Accessories

There are also Rare items, with nothing but a narrative purpose.

Magic: You can select a character and have him or her use Magic spells provided
they are capable of casting them; the proper Job or action ability must be set.
You can cast the following spells from the menu; Cure, Poisona, Cura, Raise,
Esuna, Curaga, Arise, Dispel (can only remove Float), Toad, Float and Teleport
(which warps you to the beginning of a dungeon if you're in one; if not, the
spell can't be used).

Equip: You can equip your equipment with Equip! Optimize will only look at
listed Attack when determining weapons, and only at Defense when looking at
your Head, Body and Accessory slots. Since you may want equip weapons or armor
for other purposes, and because weapons have different damage algorithms, the
'Optimum' choice may not be the best.

Status: Allows you to look at all relevant information of a character with the
notable exception of Magic Evasion, the hidden stat. Equipment weight is listed
on the second screen, as is any monster you may be carrying around due to
!Catch.

Config:

- Battle Mode set to 'Wait' will have monster stop acting when you're picking
  through your menus. Their ATB bar will not fill, they will not execute
  attacks. Helpful, but removes a sense of urgency that may be contributing to
  your gaming experience.
- Battle Speed determines the pause between you selecting your command and your
  characters executing it, and gives you more time to choose options when
  Battle Mode is set to 'Active'. The Speed spell appears to alter this setting
  for the duration of the battle, setting it to about 5, easing the flow of a
  tough battle if your Battle Speed is normally set pretty low.
- Battle Message governs the time battle messages will fill the screen
- Command Settings 'Standard' is what you're used to; Short will let every
  conceivable action be governed by a single button push, customizable if
  you're so inclined.
- ATB Gauge 'On' lets the game show you its naughty ATB Gauge; if 'Off', it'll
  display maximum HP along with current HP in that space.
- Reequip tells the game what to do when you change Job and/or Ability; apply
  'Optimum' equipment without your intervention, or you doing all the work.
  Early in the game, Optimize has no drawbacks; later, you may want to think a
  bit about your favorite set-up.
- Cursor Position set to 'Remember' is great if you're lazy and have one-trick
  ponies for characters. It lets the game remember the last place the cursos
  was one the previous turn, so that it stays on !Kick, !Zeninage or !Item,
  however you please. It'll even remember an option out of a subset menu, such
  as Syldra from !Summon.
- Auto-Dash lets you run all the time; you'll still have to press B for the
  Thief's Sprint ability, it won't automatically do that even if you have a
  Thief or another character with the Sprint ability.
- Window Color lets you change the Window Color, Einstein.
- Bestiary lets you see all your victims; their number slain, their name, most
  of their attributes (not Magic Evasion though, of their possession of a Heavy
  nature if applicable, neither inherent statuses).

Quicksave: lets you quicksave a game; the save file is removed when you load it
once, so you can't retry things from a quicksave file. Something quirky with
this game is how it forces you into a set pattern of monster formations; the
23% one first, the 6% one second. This allows you to quickly scout out elusive
monsters if you want to fight them; handy versus Stingray, Tonberry, Movers,
things of that nature. A bug it is, so feel dirty if you use this.

Save: Normal Saving.

In the original SNES game, there were also options to set Sound to Mono or
Stereo, you could have greater control over the function of the various buttons
and you could play the game with two players, assigning any of the characters
to either controller.

THE END

**********************************
 6.0     Jobs [JOB-LINK]
**********************************

Jobs will become available throughout the game. When in a Job, a character will
gain ABility Points, or ABP. By gaining ABP, the character unlocks an ability
learned from that Job, but only for him- or herself.

Setting a Job will change the stats of the character. What is absolutely vital
to understand is the concept that leveling does not in any way raise stats or
enhance compatibility. A level 50 Bartz raised as a Monk all the time will make
as good a Black Mage as one raised as a Black Mage all that time. HP is changed
along with a different Stamina value (since Stamina governs HP) and MP is
changed along with a different Magic (Power) value (since Magic governs MP).

Unlike Freelancers, Jobs will have a limited equipment pool. A Knight can equip
Swords and Knightsword, but not Harps. A White Mage can equip Robes, but not
Heavy Armor.

Jobs can have inherent abilities that are set no matter what. A Monk will
always have Barehanded and Counter, a Mystic Knight will always have Magic
Shell.

Mastering a Job will unlock the stat boosts (but not penalties!) and most
inherent abilities of that Job (if any) for the Freelancer and Mime Jobs. When
Bartz masters the Monk Job, he will have the Monk's Strength, Agility and
Stamina as a Freelancer, but not the Monk's abysmal Magic Power. In addition,
he will gain Counter and Barehanded as inherent abilities, but not the HP
boosting support abilities. Note that stat boosts do NOT stack. Once you've
mastered Monk, mastering any other Job will not further boost the Strength
of your Freelancer. 

Some action and support abilities not only allow a character to execute a feat
it would not normally be able to; some also raise stats to pass along the stat
of the Job the ability came from. The Knight's Equip Sword support ability also
gives the character the Knight's Strength (but only if it were higher than the
original Job's Strength). Abilities that grant a spell list often increase
Magic Power while equipment options often increase Strength and Agility.

Below is a list of all the Jobs and their statistic adjustments. I grouped them
according to equipment options, which is a good indication of their intended
role. Heavy Armor, Clothes and Hybrid Jobs are subsequently listed from highest
Strength to lowest Strength; the Robe Jobs are listed from highest Magic to
lowest Magic. Since HP and MP are directly governed by respectively Vitality
and Magic Power, those values are not given.

                Str.  Agl. Vit.  Mag.   ABP needed to master:

Heavy Armor:
Gladiator       26    14    3   -14     700
Knight          23     1   20   -14     710
Berserker       21   - 9   25   -23     500
Samurai         19     2   19   -12     820
Dragoon         18     5   15   -12     600
Mystic Knight   14    14   14     1     680

Clothes:
Monk            26     1   26   -23     700
Ranger          16    12    1   - 5     600
Ninja           15    14    3   -10     690
Beastmaster     13     1    8   - 3     460
Thief            1    16    2   - 6     635

Hybrid:
Cannoneer        9     6    6     4     500
Blue Mage        8     1    3    23     350
Red Mage         8     4    6     8    1159
Dancer           5     5  -10   - 5     400
Chemist          2     3    6   - 4     630

Robe:
Oracle         - 9   - 1  - 4    36     520
Summoner       -10   - 1  - 1    33     750
Black Mage     - 9        - 2    31     730 
Necromancer      4     1   21    29     750
White Mage     - 7     1         25     580
Time Mage      - 5     2  - 3    24     530
Geomancer        4     2    4    24     175
Bard           - 8     8  - 9    11     175

Note that characters have slightly different statistics compared to each other.
The difference is minor, though, and if you want to use this knowledge to
minimize weak points or maximize strong points is entirely up to you.

                Str.  Agl. Vit.  Mag.

Bartz            3     1    3     1
Lenna                  2    1     4
Galuf            2          4
Faris            2     3    2     2
Krile                  4          3

Bartz' stats synergize well with Jobs with high Strength and Vitality, which
includes Heavy Armor Jobs. Lenna has the highest innate Magic Power of the five
characters you get to control, Galuf has the highest Vitality of the five and a
bit of Strength, so he leans towards Front Row physical positions as well.
Faris has the highest all-round stats with a peak in Agility, so she is your
Joker. She is best with Knives, Bows and Whips though, as well as the !Throw
command. Krile has both the highest Agility and additional Magic Power, so she
maximizes damage output from spellcasters.

Table of Contents:

 6.1     Knight
 6.2     Monk
 6.3     Thief
 6.4     Dragoon
 6.5     Ninja
 6.6     Samurai
 6.7     Berserker
 6.8     Ranger
 6.9     Mystic Knight
 6.10    White Mage
 6.11    Black Mage
 6.12    Time Mage
 6.13    Summoner
 6.14    Blue Mage
 6.15    Red Mage
 6.16    Beastmaster
 6.17    Chemist
 6.18    Geomancer
 6.19    Bard
 6.20    Dancer
 6.21    Necromancer
 6.22    Oracle
 6.23    Cannoneer
 6.24    Gladiator
 6.25    Mime
 6.26    Freelancer

I will talk below about how action and support abilities work. If an action
ability opens up a menu with multiple choices or the action ability itself will
randomly do any number of things, section 7.0 will have it listed.

I will also talk about how a Job will perform through the game in a manner I
hope you'll find unbiased. Since it's impossible to tackle a Job as a whole,
I'll look at it from three sides: the Job itself (and how it may perform with
other abilities), the abilities it teaches (and how useful they can be on other
Jobs) and how it affects the Freelancer (and Mime) Job. This is to circumvent
ratings without meaning; giving the Red Mage a high score disregards how bad it
sucks, giving it a low score ignores !Dualcast, giving it a medium score
reflects neither.

Finally, there is the "position in optimal play" section. It is mostly what
I have come to use that Job for after several dozen playthroughs. Please don't
judge that number. Don't feel disheartened if I say how your favorite Job has
no place in my games. Doing things differently is a lot of fun, and almost
every combination of Jobs and abilities is effective enough to win you the
game. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.1    Knight [KNIGHT-LINK]
**********************************

"Valiant warriors who protect allies low on HP."

Stats:
Strength:    + 23
Agility:     + 01
Vitality:    + 20
Magic Power: - 14

Can equip: Knives, Swords, Knightswords, Shields, Heavy Helmets, Clothes,
  Heavy Armor, Gauntlets
Freelancer gains: Cover, Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus

!Attack
!Guard
 ----
!Item

 10 ABP  Cover
 30 ABP !Guard
 50 ABP  Two-Handed
100 ABP  Equip Shield
150 ABP  Equip Armor
350 ABP  Equip Swords

Cover 10 ABP Support ability
 A character with Cover will absorb Battle and Special Techniques meant for
other characters, but only characters that are crouching down (having 12.5 % of
their maximum HP or less). If the character in question has Petrify, Zombie,
Death, Sleep, Paralyze, Confuse, Berserk or Stop set, or is off-screen, Cover
won't activate.

!Guard                  40 ABP   Action ability
 After using !Guard, the character will not perform any action but to sit
there, guarding. The guarding character will not take any direct damage from
physical hits, though the Sap status caused by the physical hit will still
damage the character. Counterattacks are still activated, so physical attackers
can be completely locked down by a combination of !Guard and the Counter
support ability.

Two-Handed              90 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Will raise any character's Strength to base Freelancer Strength + 13. In
addition, Swords, Knightswords, Axes/Hammers and Katanas, in addition to those
weapon groups, the Staff, the Flail and the Morning Star may be held in two
hands, doubling damage done. No shield can be equipped while this support
ability is active.

Equip Shield           190 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Shields can be equipped.

Equip Armor            340 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Heavy Armor can be equipped. This only includes armor, not shields, heavy
helmets or gauntlets.

Equip Swords           710 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Will raise any character's Strength to base Freelancer Strength + 23. Also,
Swords and Knightswords can be equipped.

As a Job:
The Knight is the first heavy armor Job you get, and will not get outclassed at
the physical powerhouse department. The Knight has the highest Strength in the
original installment, and you won't be getting to the slightly more powerful
Gladiator in a long long time. The only heavy armor Job with more Stamina is
uncontrollable and slow. The Knight is the only Job that is able to equip the
powerful Knightswords and is the only heavy armor Job with a support ability
that helps out the team. The combination of Cover and !Guard can provide
immunity to physical attacks for the entire team, provided the other three
characters are all crouching down. The Knight is simple, really, but good at
what it does.

Taught abilities:
The Knight is the essential starting point of any heavy armor characters.
Two-Handed helps out Berserkers, Samurai, Mystic Knights and Gladiators alike.
The Equip Knightstuff abilities will only find meaning it you multiclass
outside of the Heavy Armor Jobpool, and if you're sure you won't need extra
options in a boss fight or dungeon, Equip Shields can really rank up a mage's
survivability, but only later in the game where Shields have a stronger
impact. Ninjas can benefit from two Knightswords, and the Strength boost
comes in handy as well. !Guard is useful on Monks to make units physically
invulnerable while still doing damage (through Counter). Cover is a triviality
late-game where the Mirage Vest, Mighty Guard and Golem make sure physical
attacks are not very dangerous in general. It can be handy when you're
forced to revive a character with a Phoenix Down or Raise spell; they'll be
vulnerable before they're healed further, and Cover provides them with
efficient protection. In the end, Two-Handed only increase the damage potential
of other Jobs I'm not terribly impressed with, so I often play games where no
characters gets to be a Knight. 

Freelancer gains: 
Nice Strength and Stamina bonus (though not as high as the Monk's). While 
playing like a pro, Cover should never kick in at all, though as a safety net 
it's better than nothing. A Mastered Knight turned Freelancer is better at it 
than a Knight due to equipment choices such as a Ribbon and more Magic Power 
to utilize a Rune Blade.

Position in optimal play:
Probably nowhere, though if you learn the Monk's Counter you can make it face
certain behemoths that can only attack physically. If you are uncertain about
your offensive build, Cover has a role to play in places where enemies can
combine single-digit HP-setting attacks with physical attacks, such as the
forests filled with Treants, Drakenvale and the Dimension Castle where Death
Claws may appear. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.2    Monk [MONK-LINK]
**********************************

"Masters of hand-to-hand combat who intuitively counterattack."

Stats:
Strength:    + 26
Agility:     + 01
Vitality:    + 26
Magic Power: - 23

Can equip: Light Helmets, Clothes, Armlets
Freelancer gains: Counter, Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus

!Attack
!Kick
 ----
!Item

 15 ABP !Focus
 30 ABP  Barehanded
 45 ABP !Chakra
 60 ABP  Counter
100 ABP  HP +10%
150 ABP  HP +20%
300 ABP  HP +30%


!Focus                  15 ABP   Action ability
 Forces the character to wait one turn, only to strike with twice the power of
a !Attack command on the next one. !Focus removes the weapon's random
spellcasting and special abilities, though Spellblade effects will be in
effect and critical hits (including MP-driven ones) will work normally.
Weapons that deal damage based on Magic Power, such as Rods and the Blood
Sword (not Staves) will work normally, but won't get the damage boost.

Barehanded              45 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
Barehanded gives the character base Freelancer Strength + 26 and greatly
increases the potential of the Fists weapon (the one you use when you have no
weapon equipped).

!Chakra                 90 ABP   Action ability
 Heals the user with a 30 base power healing spell and also removes Darkness
and Poison. Cannot be used on another target than the caster.

Counter                150 ABP   Support ability
 For every successful physical attack, a character equipped with this ability
has a 50 % chance of retaliating with a physical attack. Since counter-attacks
are itself never countered, this can be used to circumvent counter-attacks,
monster calling and bit setting of various kinds. Certain bosses use
physical attacks that cannot be Countered. All weapons work normally when
used in a counter-attack, but weapons that randomly perform a command (Thief
Knife, Chicken Knife, Gale Bow) will never do so, and the Twin Lance will
only attack once.

HP +10%                250 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Increases maximum HP by 10 %

HP +20%                400 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Increases maximum HP by 20 %

HP +30%                700 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Increases maximum HP by 30 %

Other features: !Kick
 !Kick is the only Action ability in this game that is not actually learned by
the Job that uses it, making !Kick Monk-only. It deals multi-target physical
damage to the enemy party as if it had delivered a single unarmed blow to all
targets. The Barehanded support ability and the Kaiser Knuckle accessory boost
the power done by !Kick, but equipped weapons will be completely ignored.

   iOS/Android: !Kick ignores Row in this version and but not boosted by 
   Kaiser Knuckles.

As a Job:
The Monk is on-and-off the most powerful Clothes Job. The Monk has the highest
Strength AND Vitality of the game and is very cheap to equip as he uses no
weapons whatsoever. What he lacks on pure Defensive armor he makes up for with
a very high amount of Hit Points. !Kick is a nice MT physical attack that in a
shocking change of pace can NOT be learned and be put on another class. The
inherent support ability of the Monk, Counter, is nothing to scoff at; 50 % of
all physical attacks that strike the Monk will be countered with a !Attack
command.

Taught abilities:
!Focus is not generally useful as it takes twice as long to deal twice as much
damage. In addition, no random spellcasting, so it seems you generally lose
out. However, !Focus will never let a random command butt into the attack, so
the Chicken Knife can be used without fear of fleeing and the Dancing Dagger
can be used without seeing Mystery Waltz for the umptienth time. Barehanded is
one of the greatest things ever, though. Barehanded is the support ability that
turns your otherwise incredibly weak Fists into weapons to be feared. Your
Fists themselves become more powerful the higher the character's level is.
Barehanded also imbues the character with the Monk's Strength (+ 26) so any
character given the Barehanded ability will make as much use out of it as the
Monk itself. You needn't even throw your weapons away; Barehanded will make
sure you swing that blade with much more fury than before.

Freelancer gains:
The Monk is awesome here. The Monk gains the highest Strength and Stamina
increase of any Job on the market, and inherent Counter to boot. If you want
super-Freelancers, you can't let the Monk slide. Note that the HP bonus 
abilities need to be equipped.

Position in optimal play:
At the very start of the game, where their combination of high HP, Barehanded
and Counter make them dominate the battlefield. Obtaining the Ninja Job spells
the end of the Monk era until the very last parts of the game, where you will
probably want their stats. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.3    Thief [THIEF-LINK]
**********************************

"Expert bandits who espy secret passages and foil back attacks. They can sprint
  by holding the B Button."

Stats:
Strength:    + 01
Agility:     + 16
Vitality:    + 02
Magic Power: - 06

Can equip: Knives, Light Helmets, Clothes, Armlets, Moonring Blade, Rising Sun,
  Twin Lance, Thief's Gloves
Freelancer gains: Find Passages, Sprint, Vigilance, Artful Dodger,
  Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus

!Attack
!Steal
 ----
!Item

 10 ABP  Find Passages
 20 ABP !Flee
 30 ABP  Sprint
 50 ABP !Steal
 75 ABP  Vigilance
150 ABP !Mug
300 ABP  Artful dodger

Find Passages           10 ABP   Support ability
 There are hidden passages in walls, and this ability allows you to see them
clearly. There are also invisible stepping tiles at some location which appear
to fall under this catagory.

!Flee                   30 ABP   Action ability
 This ability allows you to escape immediately from any battle you can escape
from. It does simply count as having run away, so the Brave Blade and the
Chicken Knife are affected.

Sprint                  60 ABP   Support ability
 Allows you to run in dungeons. It is needed to get a single chest in this
game, and it's useful in timed situations. Also, once you're used to running
and you stop doing it, your brain feels like it's going to explode. Arguably
the only support ability to actually make your characters weaker as as opposed
to your sanity, as they won't benefit from it.

   iOS/Android: Sprint now works on the Overworld map. It also helps when you
   travel by ship, airship, submarine, Chocobo and Wind Drake. 

!Steal                 110 ABP   Action ability
 Attempts to steal an opponent's item.

Vigilance              185 ABP   Support ability
 Turns any Back Attacks you might've otherwise encountered into normal
situations, even fixed Back Attacks. 

!Mug                   335 ABP   Action ability
 Attacks and steals in a single attack. When using !Mug, no weapon will ever
have a special effect or cast an additional spell.

Artful Dodger          635 ABP   Support ability
 Gives the character an Agility of base Freelancer +16.

As a Job:
Boy, the Thief really sucks as a melee unit. Thankfully, that is not what the
Thief is about. The Thief has really poor Strength for a Clothes Job, and the
bad Stamina doesn't help his case. If you want to make a Thief a damage dealer
or capable healer, make sure you give him an ability that both gives him
offensive options and raises the proper stat for it: Barehanded and any
spellcasting skillset comes to mind. You will, however, return to the Thief
every now and then as even though he can pass !Steal on to other Jobs, those
Jobs won't be able to equip the Thief's Gloves. If you want to steal, you'll
want a Thief, no exceptions.

Taught abilities:
The Thief teaches you how to be a Thief, but poorer. !Steal and !Mug's item
producing qualities won't work as well without a pair of Thief's Gloves.
Vigilance can be a vital support ability when you want to avoid casualties of
any kind; physical hitters obtaining a Back Attack can pound mages into the
ground faster than you can blink. Artful Dodger can be used to let Berserkers 
take the first turn, but that's about it.

Freelancer gains:
There is some use to sticking to the Thief past some boss fights with rare
items, though! The Thief has the highest Agility in the game, meaning that
you'll want to master it for Freelancer stat optimizing. Vigilance and Sprint
certainly don't hurt; a Back Attack can be very painful. Freelancers with the
!Steal ability are better Thieves than Thieves, since stats are better.

Position in optimal play:
There are many great rare steals in this game, but ultimately you can safely
ignore most of them except for the Reflect Mages'/Carbuncle's Reflect Rings, 
Oiseaurare's Mirage Vests and probably rare Angel Rings from Druids and 
Baldanders unless you want to farm Gil. Another exception is the Genji 
equpiment set obtainable from the many Gilgamesh encounters. Thieves are great
when escaping from Karnak Castle due to the many Elixirs and rare Gaia Gears. 
In areas with powerful monsters such as the Sea Floor Cave, the dragons in 
Exdeath's Castle, Istory Falls and the Dimension Castle. Finally, a quick Thief
with !Flee helps in obtaining Jackanapes' treasures early. For most of the
game you can designate a single character as the Thief and learn up 'til
Vigilance, but at the end of the game you will want to master Thief with all
four characters for that Agility bonus. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.4    Dragoon [DRAGOON-LINK]
**********************************

"Dragon knights who specialize in jumping and lance attacks."

Stats:
Strength:    + 18
Agility:     + 05
Vitality:    + 15
Magic Power: - 12

Can equip: Knives, Lances, Shields, Heavy Helmets, Clothes, Heavy Armor,
  Gauntlets
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus

!Attack
!Jump
 ----
!Item

 50 ABP !Jump
150 ABP !Lance
400 ABP  Equip Lances

!Jump                   50 ABP   Action ability
 Allows the character to use a Jump attack, causing it be jump into the air and
remain off-screen for a period of time about equivalent of a turn. It will then
land with an unblockable physical attack that's like an !Attack, only Row has
no effect, special effects and additional magic spells won't be used. Critical
hits (including MP-driven "critical hits" and auto-critical hits due to Nature
exploitation) may occur at normal odds. In addition, Spears (including the
Twin Lance), the Man-Eater and the Judgment Staff and the Staff of Light (due
to a bug) will deal double damage. Spellblade effects will be applied through
!Jump. Weapons that deal no damage and instead produce a spell (Harps, Wonder
Wand, Healing Staff, etc.) will do nothing in tandem with !Jump. Rods may
miss even with !Jump; Lilith Rods will apply their special effects, but may
also miss. The attack Interceptor Rocket is specifically designed to stop
Jump attacks.

   iOS/Android: !Jump takes only 10 ABP to learn, and also allows double 
   damage with the Twin Lance as well as allowing both hits to land. 

!Lance                 200 ABP   Action ability
 This ability is an unblockable magical attack that drains both HP and MP from
a single target.

Equip Lances           600 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Gives the character base Freelancer Strength +18, and allows the character to
equip Lances. While the Twin Lance is technically a Lance, it doesn't fall
under this catagory, nor does the Man-Eater (you might've been confused by their
illogical Jump bonus).

As a Job:
 The Dragoon is, more than any other Job, good at surviving. It takes fewer
hits then the others due to !Jump, and it shares its impressive armor options
with fellow heavy armor Jobs. Other heavy armor Jobs can take Two-Handed to
double damage, the Dragoon must Jump, which means that the Dragoon will be away
for half of the battle and the battle will be longer. Neither of these things
bode well for more frail units. I can give the best impression by calling the
Dragoon the only egoistical heavy armor Job there is. If this is a good trait
to have for a meatshield is something you must decide for yourself. I find the
best Dragoons to be those that defy the very thing that makes them Dragoon and
start to Dual-Wield Lances on the ground or cast Blue or Summon spells with
the aid of Air Knives.

Taught abilities:
Lances are just inferior choices to Knightswords (which are powerful) and
Katanas (which have critical hit possibilities), so the only reason to equip
them is !Jump. Equip Lances on any Job inherently lacks !Jump, so it's useless
on anything but a Dragoon-themed Freelancer. !Jump is useless without Lances,
so the same generally goes for that. The two classes that can benefit from
!Jump are the Gladiator (the only other Job that can wield a Lance) and
technically the Dancer with a Man-Eater, but that combo works better with the
Dragoon as a base Job and the Equip Ribbon ability. The Twin Lance used by
Thieves, Ninjas and Mines also deals double damage through !Jump, but since
it'll hit only once as opposed to twice through !Jump, it's kind of a moot
point. !Lance is a bit useful, I guess, on mages. !Mix replenishes MP as well
though, and has infinite amounts of miscellaneous options as a side dish.

Freelancer gains:
The Dragoon has inferior stats to other Jobs and no inherent ability is passed
on. You can safely ignore the Dragoon if you want to end up as a Freelancer.

Position in optimal play:
Nowhere. 

   iOS/Android: You will want to learn !Jump with the meager 10 ABP that 
   takes for all potential Thieves and Ninjas to pair with Twin Lances. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.5    Ninja [NINJA-LINK]
**********************************

"Stealthy fighters who excel at surprising enemies and can wield two weapons at
once."

Stats:
Strength:    + 15
Agility:     + 14
Vitality:    + 03
Magic Power: - 10

Can equip: Knives, Ninja Knives, Light Helmets, Clothes, Armlets, Moonring
  Blade, Rising Sun, Twin Lance
Freelancer gains: First Strike, Dual-Wield, Strength bonus, Agility bonus,
Vitality bonus

!Attack
!Throw
 ----
!Item

 10 ABP !Smoke
 30 ABP !Image
 50 ABP  First Strike
150 ABP !Throw
450 ABP  Dual-Wield

!Smoke                  10 ABP   Action ability
 This ability allows you to escape immediately from any battle you can escape
from. It does simply count as having run away, so the Brave Blade and the
Chickenknife are affected.

!Image                  40 ABP   Action ability
 Sets Image (2), causing the character to avoid two physical hits without fail.

First Strike            90 ABP   Support ability
 Doubles the chances of running into a Preemptive strike.

!Throw                 240 ABP   Action ability
 Opens up a menu which allows you to Throw a large array of weapons. Ninja
Scrolls depends on Magic Power, thrown weapons (including Throw-only weapons
such as Ash, Shuriken and Ninja Stars) are simply an incredibly powerful
physical strike that depends on Level, Strength and Agility. When an item is
thrown, it will be gone from you inventory. Thrown weapons ignore all aspects
of the weapon throw, as well as Row and element. !Throw is also unblockable.
For more info on !Throw, see [THROW-LINK]

Dual-Wield             690 ABP   Support ability
 The character is able to wield a weapon in each hand. Obviously this doesn't
work with Two-Handed weapons, such as Bows and Harps.

As a Job:
I want you to answer this serious question. Have you ever seen a ninja in any
video game that wasn't better at everything than the other characters? The
Ninja as a Job has it all. Decent Strength, great Agility and inherent First
Strike and Dual-Wield. The damage potential is already there, you needn't
really stick anything on there to make it work. Equip (weapon) can be a great
support ability since Knives aren't the greatest thing, but that's just
overkill. A magic skillset to boost the Ninja's Magic Power to mage levels is
also incredibly effective to make Scrolls very powerful. In this scenario,
it's a damn shame that the Ninja has no way of boosting the elements.

Taught abilities:
!Throw is divided in the physical apartment and the magical one. The Ninja is
THE best physical thrower as no Job combines Strength and Agility quite like
him (Ranger and Mystic Knight come darn close). However, the truly deadly
potential of !Throw lies in its Scrolls. A Lightning Scroll is about 2.5 as
powerful as Ramuh, but damage generally comes out about equal due to the
Ninja's only crappy stat, Magic Power. Stick !Throw on a Mage, equip an
elemental Rod of your choosing (Fire or Lightning) and watch the sickening
amounts of damage fly.

!Image has potential it can hardly live up to. With a party full of !Image
users, you can effectively make your entire party immune to physical attacks.
However, it comes at the great cost of an ability slot so that probably won't
be the case. In addition, while self-applied Image is great, it's not good
enough to, again, warrant an entire slot. Had it been a Scroll to Throw it
would've made the perfect preparation attack, but as it stands you either need
to find a physical-only boss or don't bother.

Dual-Wield is double damage at the cost of a shield, like Two-Handed. The big
difference is that this works with any weapon (unless it requires two hands).
On Thieves, Dragoons, Beastmasters and Dancers, this can greatly improve their
damage output. Actually Dual-Wield and Two-Handed are very similar. When both
can be used, Dual-Wield is more reliable (as it make two Hit Rate checks and
can hit with either) as Two-Handed is slightly more powerful most of the time
since the most powerful weapon is often unique (meaning the other hands needs
to 'settle' for a less powerful one).

Freelancer gains:
Awesome! First Strike is a good thing and the Ninja gives a very decent
Agility boost, but Dual-Wield is where it's at. It is a required component for
the most powerful physical combo in the game and is just great all around.

Position in optimal play:
Ninjas are the go-to Job for non-mages. As soon as you have learned both
Barehanded and !Blue, you can choose at any time to have a physical Ninja or
one who has greatly boosted Scrolls and an unblockable Goblin Punch to offer. 
You will spend a lot of time with Ninjas, and you won't hate it. Dual-Wield is
essential for some late-game monsters such as Omega and several GBA-only
opponents. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.6    Samurai [SAMURAI-LINK]
**********************************

"Master swordsmen whose keen reflexes allow them to intercept and deflect enemy
  attacks."

Stats:
Strength:    + 19
Agility:     + 02
Vitality:    + 19
Magic Power: - 12

Can equip: Knives, Katanas, Shields, Heavy Helmets, Clothes, Heavy Armor,
  Gauntlets
Freelancer gains: Shiradori, Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus

!Attack
!Zeninage
 ----
!Item

 10 ABP !Mineuchi
 30 ABP !Zeninage
 60 ABP  Shiradori
180 ABP  Equip Katanas
540 ABP !Iainuki

!Mineuchi               10 ABP   Action ability
Deals normal !Attack damage, disregard special effects and doesn't allow for
special effects. It also does *not* dispel Controlled, Confuse and Sleep
status, making it the only physical attack that is able to circumvent this. 
It is an improperly coded command that does not function like it should.

   iOS/Android: !Mineuchi functions properly in this game. It deals 50% 
   !Attack damage and sets Paralyze, trading power for stopping attacks. 
   Since Paralyze only lasts for a significant time on non-Heavy targets and
   !Mineuchi takes up an entire ability slot that could've been filled with 
   !Blue, !Summon or a support ability that increases physical damage, I 
   can't think of a situation where !Mineuchi is more helpful than other 
   options. Verdict: blows. 

!Zeninage               40 ABP   Action ability
 !Zeninage is an INCREDIBLY powerful physical attack. I mean, really. It far
surpasses anything but the very late-game vintage set-ups, is non-elemental and
unblockable. The only downside is how it costs you money. It's (50 * level * 
enemies attacked). There are no battles in this game that are not equally 
easily won without spending a hefty sum, so I never use it. It's often used 
versus Neo Exdeath, though, since Gil is no longer an issue at that point and 
physical characters lack any other means of dealing massive amounts of MT 
damage. 

Shiradori              100 ABP   Support ability
Before 'normal' Hit Rate calculations begin, the character has a 25 % chance of
dodging the attack anyway when this ability is equipped.

Equip Katanas          280 ABP   Support ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Strength + 19 and allows them to equip
Katanas.

!Iainuki               820 ABP   Action ability
 This unique attack is a true gamble. It's a multi-target attack that attempts
to kill all targets immediately. It has a 85 % Hit Rate but also takes into
account the level factor all magical attacks do. It will never work on Heavy
targets.

As a Job:
 The Samurai wields the most impressive weapon of all. His MIND. Just kidding,
he wields Katanas. The Katana the normal Sword's damage formula and is
compatible with Two-Handed, but aside of all that Katanas simply tend to be
strong. The best thing they've got going is the fact they have critical hit
rates. This makes the Samurai the Heavy Armor Job with the best average damage
output. It's really a damn shame Katanas and !Spellblade don't go together. The
Samurai has inherent Shiradori and thus avoid more physical attacks than other
Jobs. I don't even consider !Zeninage as it's this game auto-win button. His
stats are decent. Strength a bit below the Knight and Berserker, but his weapon
selection make him the more dangerous one anyway. The Wind Slash Katana boosts
Aera for the short time the Samurai does not yet have the option to wield an
Air Knife. 

Taught abilities:

   !Zeninage is not an ability, it is a sin.
   !Zeninage is not an ability, it is a sin.
   !Zeninage is not an ability, it is a sin.
   !Zeninage is not an ability, it is a sin.
   !Zeninage is not an ability, it is a sin.
   !Zeninage is not an ability, it is a sin.
   !Zeninage is not an ability, it is a sin.
   !Zeninage is not an ability, it is a sin.
   !Zeninage is not an ability, it is a sin.
   !Zeninage is not an ability, it is a sin.

!Mineuchi is bugged and useless. !Iainuki is slow, unpredictable death versus
many honorless opponents. These are useless, and there are no other abilities
learned. None that are not a sin, I mean. Unless you want to use !Zeninage,
there is little reason to progress as a Samurai for the duraton of the game.
Equip Katanas might be fun on a Ninja, but than again, almost everything is.

Freelancer gains:
Inherent Shiradori is nothing to scoff at, but that's about it. There is no
stat that the Samurai improves better than other heavy armor Jobs, so for a
Freelancer the Samurai offers little but the action abilities it learns.

Position in optimal play:
Non-existent; time spent as a Samurai is generally wasted ABP. When the 
Masamune makes an appearance, the Samurai can be used to do things before the
monster has had a chance to move. This will probably be fleeing or setting up
a certain buff or debuff. With Hermes Sandals present, this is never actually
necessary. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.7    Berserker [BERSERKER-LINK]
**********************************

"Always berserk in battle, these feral warriors sacrifice commands to gain
  attack strength and power."

Stats:
Strength:    + 21
Agility:     - 09
Vitality:    + 25
Magic Power: - 23

Can equip: Axes, Hammers, Shields, Heavy Helmets, Clothes, Heavy Armor,
  Gauntlets
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Vitality bonus

(no commands, acts automatically)

100 ABP  Berserk
400 ABP  Equip Axes

Berserk                100 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Sets the Berserk status in-battle. This makes the character uncontrollable but
increases physical damage done by 50 %. This also makes the character immune to
Confuse. The character does not start acting until it would normally be able to
select an attack.

   iOS/Android: Due to the improved ATB system, those with the Berserk ability
   can act independent of the rest of the team. In addition, a change has 
   been made to the Berserk status. Berserked character will no longer attack 
   a random target, but will attack monsters in a set order. It seems they 
   will attack Front Row targets first. This is somewhat of a buff to the 
   Berserker class and characters with Berserk, since attacking Back Row 
   targets halves damage done with most weapons. 

Equip Axes             500 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Gives the character base Freelancer Strength + 21 and, don't be fooled, it
DOES allows the character to equip both Axes AND Hammers.

As a Job:
The Berserker shines early in the game. With great amounts of HP and great
Strength, the Berserker can deliver extreme amounts of damage when given the
Two-Handed ability. Remember, no Action ability will actually work on the
Berserker (outside of giving stat boosts). The Death Sickle which is obtained
late in the first world is an extremely potent weapon. Combining the Gaia
Hammer with an action ability that raises Magic Power is also extremely potent,
and since it's Back Row OK will never suffer from row penalties. When the
worlds change, you start to gain more and more control over your battle
situation and both you and the opponents can create more and more special
effects on the battlefield. The Berserker is too easily fazed; its great damage
output can now be equalled by other (mainly magical) Jobs and the lack of
control becomes an extreme hindrance.

Taught abilities:
Berserk is a useful ability if you favor defense over offense, as opposed to
Dual-Wield and Two-Handed, it increases damage without decreasing defense. The
loss of control is something you'll have to keep in mind, though. Since you'll
often curse at your Berserked unit for attacking a unit in the Back Row for
lesser damage, Berserk is best set when facing single targets or when wielding
weapons that deal the same amount of damage from (and to) the Back Row. Axes
and Hammers are unique weapons as they only take 25 % of the target's Defense
into account, making them able to cut through high-Defense enemies and deliver
more damage on the whole; they're not very impressive otherwise since they do
no deliver Critical Hits or work with Spellblade, and equip Axes is therefor
a poor ability to set. A fun exception is the Rune Axe; a mage with with the
Equip Axes support ability will deal tremendous amounts of damage with the
Rune Axe. Just make sure your axe-wielding magician doesn't quickly die in
the Front Row. 

Freelancer gains:
It is a GOOD thing the Freelancer doesn't pick up auto-Berserk, as that would
make mastering the Berserker a liability. As for stats, the Berserker gives
great Strength and Stamina, but not as good as the Monk. Nothing to see here,
is what I'm saying. Mastering the Berserker is a fast way of gaining a lot of
Strength and Vitality, and some don't want to have Counter on their end-game
characters. If you don't want to spend time to master the Monk class and gain
the Counter ability in the process, spending some time with the Berserker in,
say, the Phoenix Tower may be what you want. 

Position in optimal play:
If you don't want to master Monk with all characters, master the Berserker
with the five Magic Pots in the Phoenix Tower. You won't have to use this
animalistic maniac for more than five battles. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.8    Ranger [RANGER-LINK]
**********************************

"Nature-loving archers who can call on local wildlife for aid."

Stats:
Strength:    + 16
Agility:     + 12
Vitality:    + 01
Magic Power: - 05

Can equip: Knives, Bows, Light Helmets, Clothes, Armlets
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus

!Attack
!Aim
 ----
!Item

 15 ABP !Animals
 45 ABP !Aim
135 ABP  Equip Bows
405 ABP !Rapid Fire

!Animals                15 ABP   Action ability
 Calls forth a random woodland friend to aid you in battle. For more info on
!Animals, see [ANIMALS-LINK]

!Aim                    60 ABP   Action ability
 Performs a !Attack command, but unblockable. Rods may still miss. Cannot be
used when affected by the Darkness status ailment.

Equip Bows             195 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Gives the character base Freelancer Strength + 16 and base Freelancer Agility
+12 and allows the character to equip Bows.

!Rapid Fire            600 ABP   Action ability
 Allows the character to attack physically four times, but the multiplier is
halved and Defense isn't taken into account. !Rapid Fire cannot be blocked, and
additional spells and special effects won't come into play. The third and
fourth strike of !Rapid Fire provoke no counters, nor do they dispel Sleep,
Confuse or Controlled.

As a Job:
The Ranger has good Strength for a Clothes Job, but low Stamina. This is
countered by the fact that the Ranger can remain in the Back Row. He's quite
poor against magic attacks for this reason, as he has neither the HP nor the
magical robes to withstand them. The only thing that makes a Ranger stand out
as a Job is the ability to wield Bows and the ability to strike with unerring
accuracy. Bows are not very good, lack impressive special abilities and their
damage is really hard to boost since it requires two hands. Without !Aim, you
will see that their accuracy is also pretty bad, this being only 70 % for most
Bows. The most powerful Bows for their time are the Hayate Bow when stolen in
Drakenvale and the Artemis Bow when wielded versus Magic Beasts, which makes
them quite potent.

Taught abilities:
I can be quick about Equip Bows, 'cause it sucks. Bows without !Aim miss a lot.
There is no reason to especially want them. If you want damage potential on
White and Time Mages, equip an offensive magic skillset. Other Jobs are better
served by better physical options such as Barehanded or Dual-Wield. There's a
few niche scenarios (the Artemis Bow really does pack a great punch versus
Magic Beasts, and has a non-bad Hit Rate so that's good on Thieves or
somesuch) where you can use those two anyway, though. !Aim on other Jobs is
often a triviality as well, since Bows are about the only weapons to miss
often anyway. Except Axes and Hammers, but you can't !Aim with a Berserker, so
the Gladiator is the only Job (wielding both Axes and Bows) that could negate a
present miss chance. The Blood Sword is another notable oddity where !Aim could
prove useful, as is the Mystic Knight. In many battles, you'll want the Mystic
Knight to simply set a status (Break Spellblade is the best example) at which
point the Mystic Knight's damage output is irrelevant but his Hit Rate is
important. 

!Animals is very sweet, actually. Those few that deal damage will run off
Magic Power, so !Animals is best utilized on a Job with high Magic Power. With
only 15 ABP needed to learn the command, it's a great secondary action ability
for Black Mages and Summoners since they already can deal great amounts of
damage.

!Rapid Fire is where physical attacks get broken. The attack becomes
effectively twice as powerful, is unblockable, ignores Defense and has no
random effects. With Dual-Wield, that's eight attacks. !Rapid Fire works
together with !Spellblade. !Rapid Fire is the best physical-related ability in
the game and you can't pass it up. For this reason, the Ranger is not a
forgotten Job but a very popular one.

Freelancer gains:
Nothing, really. No inherent qualities and no stat boots worth mentioning when
you compare them to other options. Freelancers are best employed as physical
attacks though (since Mimes are better casters), and you'll want !Rapid Fire
for them.

Position in optimal play:
Spending time as a Ranger is mostly something you endure until you learn
!Rapid Fire. Packs a good punch versus Calofisteri and Apanda with the Artemis
Bow. A quick dip for !Animals is also defendable, but not necessary. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.9    Mystic Knight [MYSTIC-LINK]
**********************************

"Able to enchant swords, these magical warriors automatically cast Shell when
  HP is low."

Stats:
Strength:    + 14
Agility:     + 14
Vitality:    + 14
Magic Power: + 01

Can equip: Knives, Swords, Shields, Heavy Helmets, Clothes, Heavy Armor,
  Gauntlets
Freelancer gains: Magic Shell, Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus,
  Magic Power bonus

!Attack
!Spellblade
 ----
!Item

 10 ABP  Magic Shell
 20 ABP !Spellblade (level 1)
 30 ABP !Spellblade (level 2)
 50 ABP !Spellblade (level 3)
 70 ABP !Spellblade (level 4)
100 ABP !Spellblade (level 5)
400 ABP !Spellblade (level 6)

Magic Shell             10 ABP   Support ability
When the character reaches Near Death status (12.5 % maximum HP or less), a
Magic Barrier will be immediately cast, setting Shell on the character, halving
magical damage done and halving the Hit Rate for magical attacks.

!Spellblade 1           30 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Strength + 4 and base Freelancer Magic
Power - 9 and allows the character to cast up to level 1 Sword Magic. For more
info on !Spellblade, see [SPELLBLADE-LINK]

!Spellblade 2           60 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Strength + 6 and base Freelancer Magic
Power - 7 and allows the character to cast up to level 2 Sword Magic.

!Spellblade 3          110 ABP   Action ability
Gives the character base Freelancer Strength + 8 and base Freelancer Magic
Power - 5 and allows the character to cast up to level 3 Sword Magic.

!Spellblade 4          180 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Strength + 10 and base Freelancer Magic
Power - 3 and allows the character to cast up to level 4 Sword Magic.

!Spellblade 5          280 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Strength + 12 and base Freelancer Magic
Power - 1 and allows the character to cast up to level 5 Sword Magic.

!Spellblade 6          680 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Strength + 14 and base Freelancer Magic
Power + 1 and allows the character to cast all Sword Magic.

As a Job:
The Mystic Knight has surprising stats for a heavy armor Job, as its Agility
and Magic Power are higher than you'd expect. He ranks quite high in Agility
compared to other Jobs (second!) and he even gets a tiniest of Magic Power
boosts over a Freelancer. His Strength and Stamina, obviously, suffer. Strength
is comparable to Clothes Jobs and Stamina, while high, is bad compared to other
heavy armor Jobs. As a melee tank, he is good enough but bad compared to
similair options.

The Mystic Knight doesn't hit as hard as the other Jobs and needs to spend a
turn casting a spell on his weapon before he can be anything but a weaker
Knight. This turns out great for boss fights and bad for random encounters, to
put it bluntly. Two-Handed is a great support ability to boost his damage, at
the expense of a Shield, and Equip Sword puts him on the level of the Knight.
The Mystic Knight has a long stretch in the game - between Castle Bal and the
fourth tablet - where he lacks impressive physical damage because all the good
swords are Knightswords he can't equip, leaving him with Knives he can't hold
with two hands. 

Taught abilities:
Magic Shell, of course, is useless even as a free support ability; there's no
way you'll want to give up your single ability slot for it. !Spellblade as an
ability is half-decent, but not awesome. A Knight with !Spellblade will be
better than a Mystic Knight. However, you'll really want a support ability such
as Two-Handed or Dual-Wield to increase damage so you'll wind up returning to
the Mystic Knight anyway. Ninjas really benefit from Spellblade by the way,
since Knives are affected by !Spellblade and they have inherent Dual-Wield.
In latest parts of the game as well as the GBA-only content, !Spellblade
becomes very important since you can one-shot several powerful enemies by using
!Rapid Fire with two weapons imbued with an element that enemy is weak against.

Freelancer gains:
Magic Shell, technically, but you shouldn't need to see it. The stat boosts are
nothing to write home about either. The best physical attacker contains a slot
for !Spellblade 6 however, so you'll want to master Mystic Knight regardless.

Position in optimal play:
A complete chore. Their !Spellblade is really useful versus Kuza Beasts, 
Sandcrawlers, Blue Dragons, Carbuncle, Odin, Mecha Heads, Azulmagia, King 
Behemoths, Omega and Necrophobe, but they lack any real punch most of the time.
Train these guys in areas where your Summoners or Bards clean house, and make
sure to learn !Spellblade 5. Then you're finally done with them. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.10   White Mage [WHITEM-LINK]
**********************************

"Priests who use white magic to heal and protect allies."

Stats:
Strength:    - 07
Agility:     + 01
Vitality:      00
Magic Power: + 25

Can Equip: Staves, Hats, Robes, Armlets

Freelancer gains: Agility bonus, Magic Power bonus

!Attack
!White
 ----
!Item

 10 ABP !White (level 1)
 20 ABP !White (level 2)
 30 ABP !White (level 3)
 50 ABP !White (level 4)
 70 ABP !White (level 5)
100 ABP !White (level 6)
300 ABP MP +10%

!White 1                10 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 15 and allows the character
to cast level 1 White Magic. For more info on !White, see [WHITE-LINK]

!White 2                30 ABP   Action ability
Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 17 and allows the character
to cast level 2 White Magic.

!White 3                60 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 19 and allows the character
to cast level 3 White Magic.

!White 4               110 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 21 and allows the character
to cast level 4 White Magic.

!White 5               180 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 23 and allows the character
to cast level 5 White Magic.

!White 6               280 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 25 and allows the character
to cast all White Magic.

MP +10%                580 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Maximum MP increases by 10 %.

As a Job:
White Mages suck! Boo! No, seriously, it's easy to miss how bad they are, but
they are. Here's how. They have quite a bit less Magic Power than, say, Black
Mages or Summoners. In addition, they can equip neither Rods NOR Knives.
Throughout their career, the White Mage cannot boost Black spells or even the
powerful Wind-elemental attack of the Summoner. Not counting the very end where
through a single Staff the White Mage can boost the Holy spell, you will always
be better off sticking White magic on a Black Mage or Summoner. There is a
small window during with Titan is your most powerful spell; since the White
Mage can equip Gaia Gear, he can boost like everybody else. You should use this
time to train your White Mages, since !White is a handy spell list to have. 

Taught abilities:
!White is quite potent, and thus the White Mage is redeemed. Buffs are often
trivial, but healing of HP and status ailments is useful and raising the fallen
even moreso. What can I say? You'll want a spot for !White versus bosses. When
the Blue spell White Wind can be learned, the White Mage's healing hands become
somewhat less important, but its buff spells such as Shell and Image become
more potent. At the end of the game, the single offensive White spell, Holy, 
makes a grand appearance. The only two weapons to boost its power are a Staff 
and a Bell, thus making the Time Mage, Red Mage, Chemist, Geomancer and Oracle 
the best Holy casters. Otherwise, !White just runs off Magic Power, so powerful
mages make powerful White mages.

Freelancer gains:
Nothing, really. MP + 10% needs to be set and is inferior to the similar MP
+ 30% anyway. The only stat is really raises is Magic Power, at which it is not
very adept compared to other Mages. !White 6 is awesome to be able to set to
Freelancers and Mimes, though.

Position in optimal play:
Try to decide if elemental boosting is relevant for the dungeon you're about
to face. If not, it's probably a great time to train your White Mages. You
will want to learn how to cast !White 6. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.11   Black Mage [BLACKM-LINK]
**********************************

"Wizards whose powerful black magic strikes fear into enemies."

Stats:
Strength:    - 09
Agility:       00
Vitality:    - 02
Magic Power: + 31

Can equip: Knives, Rods, Hats, Robes, Armlets

Freelancer gains: Magic Power bonus

!Attack
!Black
 ----
!Item

 10 ABP !Black (level 1)
 20 ABP !Black (level 2)
 30 ABP !Black (level 3)
 50 ABP !Black (level 4)
 70 ABP !Black (level 5)
100 ABP !Black (level 6)
450 ABP MP +30%

!Black 1                10 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 16 and allows the character
to cast level 1 Black Magic. For more info on !Black, see [BLACK-LINK]

!Black 2                30 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 19 and allows the character
to cast level 2 Black Magic.

!Black 3                60 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 22 and allows the character
to cast level 3 Black Magic.

!Black 4               110 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 25 and allows the character
to cast level 4 Black Magic.

!Black 5              180 ABP    Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 28 and allows the character
to cast level 5 Black Magic.

!Black 6               280 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 31 and allows the character
to cast all Black Magic.

MP +30%                730 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Increases maximum MP by 30 %

As a Job:
The Black Mage has great Magic Power (second only to the Summoner and late-game
Oracle) and the ability to wield Rods. You've won right there! The Black Mage
has everything you'd want from him. I don't know what to say about him! The
Black Mage is better at healing than the White Mage if you give him White
spells, and since he has offense built-in the Black Mage can be boosted by,
say, Equip Shield, !Lance, !Animals, whatever half-decent utility option you
can think of. Just don't try to give weapons to the guy, it's not what he's
here for.

Taught abilities:
The Black spelllist is quite excellent throughout the entire game. The three
elements the Black Mage specializes in are the three most popular elements to
be weak against and are easily boosted as well. It's too bad the ultimate Black
spell, Flare, is non-elemental and cannot be boosted, meaning it'll fall short
of boosted 'lesser' spells. Black spells have a problem with Reflective
enemies, but they are rare indeed.

Freelancer gains:
Nothing again, really. Not the highest Magic Power, no inherent abilities.
MP + 30% is quite useless as well.

Position in optimal play:
You'll want to learn !Black 6, and that's no chore since these guys can equip
Rods. Their usefulness peaks just past Karnak and Moore, since they get to 
buy powerful new spells there. Don't take Black Mages or other characters with
!Black into the Fire-Powered Ship or the Great Forest of Moore, or have them 
face Byblos or Rocket Launchers, since while Confused they make attack your
party with powerful magic spells. Lamia's Tiara or Reflect Rings help prevent
this nonsense. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.12   Time Mage [TIMEM-LINK]
**********************************

"Masters of space and time, these mages easily bend all dimensions to their
  will."

Stats:
Strength:    - 05
Agility:     + 02
Vitality:    - 03
Magic Power: + 24

Can equip: Knives, Rods, Staves, Hats, Robes, Armlets

Freelancer gains: Agility bonus, Magic Power bonus

!Attack
!Time
 ----
!Item

 10 ABP !Time (level 1)
 20 ABP !Time (level 2)
 30 ABP !Time (level 3)
 50 ABP !Time (level 4)
 70 ABP !Time (level 5)
100 ABP !Time (level 6)
250 ABP Equip Rods

!Time 1                 10 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 14 and allows the character
to cast level 1 Dimension Magic. For more info on !Time, see [TIME-LINK]

!Time 2                 30 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 16 and allows the character
to cast level 2 Dimension Magic.

!Time 3                 60 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 18 and allows the character
to cast level 3 Dimension Magic.

!Time 4                110 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 20 and allows the character
to cast level 4 Dimension Magic.

!Time 5                180 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 22 and allows the character
to cast level 5 Dimension Magic.

!Time 6                280 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 24 and allows the character
to cast all Dimension Magic.

Equip Rods             530 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Allows the character to equip Rods, Staves and the Flail & Morning Star.

As a Job:
The Time Mage performs as a lesser Black Mage; Magic Power is lower by a fair
bit and !Time has trouble dealing damage, meaning that you're stuck setting
something like !Black or !Summon as your secondary ability. The Time Mage can,
however, equip Rods and thus have enough damage potential as long as you make
sure they can cast spells to deal damage in the first place. You won't be
disappointed by the Time spellist, though their worth is far more clear in
longer battles where buffs and debuffs make the difference.

Taught abilities:
Equip Rods, to start with that, is worthless. It would be needed if there was a
Job with respectable Magic Power and elemental options that would otherwise
lack any means of boosting elements. There is no such thing. A Ninja or
Beastmaster could stand to boost Scrolls and Released monster attack, but the
Ninja is better off with an ability to boost Magic Power and the only monsters
worth Catching and Releasing are those who use the non-elemental (Strong) Attack
anyway.

!Time is a great skillset to set on Black Mages and Summoners, as it gives them
buff and debuff options next to violence. Since such a large part of !Time
doesn't depend on the caster's Magic Power or elemental boosting, !Time is the
only skillset that works well on any Job; Monks could use it and be glad they
did. Even Comet and Meteor function independent of the caster's Magic Power
score. !Time's most potent spells, Meteor and Quick, are tremendously costly 
MP-wise, so Gold Hairpins are to be used when possible. 

Freelancer gains:
Nothing. Magic Power isn't too hot, other stats don't do anything and the Time
Mage has no inherent abilities. !Time is a great second spellist for a Mime,
though; together with !Dualcast and either !Black or !Summon, !Time is an
essential cogwheel in the Magical Mime Machine of Massacre.

Position in optimal play:
Learn !Time 6 with your mages. It's all about Haste and Slow in most battles,
and Reset in a select few such as the Exdeath battle in Exdeath's Castle and
possibly some battles where you want to Steal Angel Rings or Mirage Vests. 
Time Mages are also optimal versus Archeodemon, whose bane is the Meteor spell.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.13   Summoner [SUMMONER-LINK]
**********************************

"Sorcerers with the ability to summon magical beings and harness their power."

Stats:
Strength:    - 10
Agility:     - 01
Vitality:    - 01
Magic Power: + 33

Can equip: Knives, Rods, Hats, Robes, Armlets

Freelancer gains: Magic Power bonus

!Attack
!Summon
 ----
!Item

 15 ABP !Summon (level 1)
 30 ABP !Summon (level 2)
 45 ABP !Summon (level 3)
 60 ABP !Summon (level 4)
100 ABP !Summon (level 5)
500 ABP !Call

!Summon 1               15 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 17 and allows the character
to cast level 1 Summon Magic. For more info on !Summon, see [SUMMON-LINK]

!Summon 2               45 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 21 and allows the character
to cast level 2 Summon Magic.

!Summon 3               90 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 25 and allows the character
to cast level 3 Summon Magic.

!Summon 4              150 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 29 and allows the character
to cast level 4 Summon Magic.

!Summon 5              250 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 33 and allows the character
to cast all Summon Magic.

!Call                  750 ABP   Action ability
 Calls forth a random Summon monster that you've obtained for no MP cost. Call
may use any attack; Odin will use Gungnir when Heavy targets are present, Fat
Chocobo may appear and Phoenix may revive a character if it randomly targets a
Dead character.

As a Job:
The Summoner goes toe-to-toe with the Black Mage the entire game, sometimes
surpassing it and sometimes falling behind it a bit. Better at crowd control
versus stronger ST attacks. Various defensive options versus offensive status
ailments. As a Job, the Summoner has a bit higher Magic Power and was the most
powerful caster until the Oracle was invented. Summoners can equip Rods as
well, so nothing to wish for there. The Summoner is awesome.

Taught abilities:
The offensive spells are awesome. Titan can be boosted with Gaia Gear and thus
by White Mages. Syldra can be boosted by a Knife and thus by any Job except the
Monk and White Mage. Golem and Odin are just great as additional options next
to straight violence. !Summon is a great offensive ability for those that lack
offensive options, generally better so than !Black. Thoughout most of the game,
having two !Summon casters summon the most potent Summon beast at that point
will clear the battlefield. This may become a burdon on your MP though, so the
Gold Hairpin can be helpful. 

!Call is not very practical in serious fights, but it's fun and it's free. Just
note that !Call does not boost Magic Power in any way, so it's best to use
!Call on Black Mages, Summoners and Oracles.

Freelancer gains:
The highest Magic Power boost in the old games and only the second-highest in
the GBA release, the Summoner gives a hefty boost to spellcasting shlobs.

Position in optimal play:
Easily one of the most important Jobs in the game, since !Summon helps train
a lot of Jobs otherwise devoid of any real damage potential. In the Super
Famicom game obviously necessary to master because of the Magic Power stat,
in all other releaes unnecessary to master since !Call is irrelevant. In
general, dual Ifrit summoning on the first world, dual Titan summoning on the
second world, dual Syldra summoning on the third world and dual Leviathan
summoning in the Interdimensional Rift is a key to winning most random battles
of the game. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.14   Blue Mage [BLUEM-LINK]
**********************************

"Mages with the ability to learn monster's special skills."

Stats:
Strength:    - 08
Agility:     + 01
Vitality:    + 03
Magic Power: + 23

Can equip: Knives, Swords, Rods, Shields, Hats, Light Helmets, Clothes, Robes,
  Armlets
Freelancer gains: Agility bonus, Vitality bonus, Magic Power bonus, Learning

!Attack
!Blue
 ----
!Item

 10 ABP !Check
 20 ABP  Learning
 70 ABP !Blue
250 ABP !Scan

!Check                  10 ABP   Action ability
  Displays target's current HP and maximum HP. Due to a bug, it won't display
elemental weaknesses like it was supposed to.

Learning                30 ABP   Support ability
  In order to learn Blue Magic after a battle, the struck target needs to have
the Learning ability equipped.

!Blue                  100 ABP   Action ability
  Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 23 and allows the character
to cast all Blue magic the party has learned up to that point. For more info on
!Blue, see [BLUE-LINK]

!Scan                  350 ABP   Action ability
  Displays a target's current HP, maximum HP, elemental weaknesses and
currently inflicted status ailments.

As a Job:
As the only Job to combine both Learning and the ability to cast Blue magic,
you'll find yourself switching to them on occasion. However, the Blue Mage's
Magic Power isn't very impressive for a Mage, Goblin Punch works better on
characters with higher Strength and White Wind, ??? and Self-Destruct work
better on those with much Vitality. Since Blue Mages can equip Rods, setting a
high !Summon or !Black spelllist is a great way to give even more offense to
the Blue Mage; with healing, buffs and debuffs, the Blue Mage already has all
the utility he'll ever need.

Taught abilities:
!Blue is a great ability that can deal magical damage, HP-based damage,
Strength-based damage and various buffs and debuffs, so there really isn't any
Job that uses it much better than others. An interesting and important note is,
though, that the Air Knife boosts the Wind-elemental attacks; everybody can
equip the Air Knife except for the Monk and the White Mage, so it's easy to
boost the element. A downside could be that learning Blue spells when they
become available can be a true hassle sometimes. With only White Wind and
Mighty Guard, !Blue is also a superior choice to bring into any given boss
battle, let alone all those other Blue spells that you can use to make the
game cry. For more, see [BLUE-LINK]

Freelancer gains:
Learning, but by the time you switch to Freelancers you probably no longer need
to learn anything. Stat boosts aren't impressive either.

Position in optimal play:
Aqua Breath kills the Sandworm.
Level 5 Death kills Jackanapes, Adamantoise, Soul Cannon's Launchers, 
 ArcheoAevis' last form and Objet d'Art enemies.
Dark Spark in combination with Level 5 Death kills Ramuh, Gilgamesh #3, Atomos,
 and Sekhmet.
Death Claw cripples Byblos, Ramuh, Manticore, Kuza Beasts, Tyrannosaur, the
 Dragon Pod, Yellow Dragons and the ? crystal guardians
Goblin Punch and Missile greatly help out most physical attacks by providing
 Back Row OK unblockable damage with the weapon they are wielding as well as
 percentage-based damage that often is more powerful than their physical attack
 versus non-Heavy targets. 
Mighty Guard and White Wind are great boons in all boss battles, and Mighty
Guard is a superior method of setting Shell, which more or less required to 
survive Neo Exdeath's Almagest. 
1000 Needles is a unique attack that punches through all defenses, allowing
 you to easily damage such cretins as Jackanapes, Skull Eaters, Ghidra, 
 Archeoaevis and Gilgamesh #2 after his power-up.

!Blue screws over more boss battles than any other ability. You don't have to
strain too much to learn all Blue spells, or even the good ones at the first
opportunity. Death Claw from Iron Claw or Level 3 Flare from Red Dragons isn't
at all necessary. Just go out of your way to learn White Wind and Mighty Guard.
I would strongly advise letting all four characters learn !Blue at some point.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.15   Red Mage [REDMAGE-LINK]
**********************************

"Versatile mages, versed in both black and white magic.

Stats:
Strength:    + 08
Agility:     + 04
Vitality:    + 06
Magic Power: + 08

Can equip: Knives, Swords, Rods, Staves, Hats, Light Helmets, Clothes, Robes,
  Armlets
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus, Magic bonus

!Attack
!Red
 ----
!Item

 20 ABP !Red (level 1)
 40 ABP !Red (level 2)
100 ABP !Red (level 3)
999 ABP !Dualcast

!Red 1                  20 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 2 and allows the character
to cast level 1 White and Black Magic.

!Red 2                  60 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 5 and allows the character
to cast level 2 White and Black Magic.

!Red 3                 160 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 8 and allows the character
to cast level 3 White and Black Magic.

!Dualcast             1159 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 8 and allows the character
to cast level 3 White and Black Magic. In addition, this ability allows you to
cast two spells in a single turn from the Red spelllist as well as any !Black,
!White, !Time and !Summon spell your character is able to perform.

As a Job:
The Red Mage seems a jack-of-all-trades, but is actually the greatest mage as
long as you give him higher-level spells and the Magic Power that comes with
it. The Red Mage may be able to equip Swords, but without Shields, Heavy Armor
or decent Stamina, you'll want to play him as a pure caster. As a caster, he
lacks the Magic Power to be truly effective. His ability to wield Rods and
Staves makes him a worthwhile recipient of a spellist which boosts his Magic
Power to great levels, though. A Red Mage with !Summon has all the strengths of
a Summoner, but more Stamina and up to eighteen additional utility spells.

The Red Mage does not learn any spell of a higher level than level 3, meaning
that after the first third of the game, the Red Mage falls behind in power even
more harshly without multiclassing. Keep his offense up to date with something
like !Summon and he'll play as the greatest caster ever, but since you get no
short-term reward of leveling as one, it's likely you'll abandon him in favor
of upgrading spellists of other casters or learning other abilities.

Taught abilities:
The !Red spell-list levels twice as slowly but gets you both White and Black
spells to cast. This is great in the first world, and being able to throw
around status ailments and Raise is still a great boon to any caster even when
the damaging and healing spells fall behind in power. !Red 3 is a great ability
to have during the first world. The cost here is that any time spent with the
Red Mage will, past that point, seem like a waste since you'll want to have
access to level 4 spells and higher on other Jobs, and you threw away 160 ABP
for a short term benefit. 

!Dualcast is what makes mages great. You'll want this so bad, people often
don't have any idea what to do with the Red Mage and still suffer through
999 ABP just to get the ability for their Summoners. !Dualcast is undeniably
awesome, though learning the ability need not be a chore. !Summon or !Black,
boost the element(s), you're as good as any Black Mage or Summoner itself.
Reaching !Dualcast takes almost 1200 ABP, which is about 50 % of what a 
character normally obtains throughout the game without grinding. You decide
if you think it's worth it. 

Freelancer gains:
Stat gains across the board, technically, but they're overshadowed by other
Jobs. !Dualcast is key to the magical mayhem that can be unlocked end-game, so
get it.

Position in optimal play:
Spending any time with the Red Mage other than with the express purpose of
learning !Dualcast at the end of the game is suboptimal. Learning !Dualcast
is a great chore with a great pay-off. It's certainly optimal to get it, but
I would only advise using the Red Mages around the save point just prior to
the final Exdeath / Neo Exdeath confrontation, where Movers roam. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.16   Beastmaster [BEASTM-LINK]
**********************************

"Trainers whose open hearts and strong wills allow them to capture and control
  enemy monsters."

Stats:
Strength:    + 13
Agility:     + 01
Vitality:    + 08
Magic Power: - 03

Can equip: Knives, Whips, Light Helmets, Clothes, Armlets
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus

!Attack
!Catch / !Release
 ----
!Item

 10 ABP !Calm
 50 ABP !Control
100 ABP  Equip Whips
300 ABP !Catch

!Calm                   10 ABP   Support ability
 Sets Stop, but NEVER works on creatures with a Magic Beast nature.
Unblockable. This is a bugged command, as the intention obviously was to affect
Magic Beasts only.

   iOS/Android: !Calm works properly now and sets Stop to Magic Beasts. 

!Control                60 ABP   Support ability
 Allows the character to control the mind of an opponent, making it fight for
you.

Equip whips            160 ABP   Support ability
 Gives the character 37 Strength and 25 Agility and allows the character to
equip Whips.

!Catch                 460 ABP   Support ability
 Allows the character to catch and subsequently release monsters to remove and
attack monsters on the battlefield. For more info on !Catch, see [CATCH-LINK]

The Beastmaster revolves around three major things which distinguishes the Job
from any other. First off, there's the Whip. Whips are often fairly powerful,
always Back Row OK and either cast an additional spell or attempt to Paralyze
the target. This is awesome, though damage output is often sub-par compared
to weapons that focus on dealing damage only.

!Control is one of the greatest abilities the game has to offer, and you don't
even need to be a Beastmaster to make use of it. Control lets you control a
monster. This keeps them from attacking you (which is more useful the stronger
the creature is) and lets you pick an attack from their Control attacks and set
a target for it. This is most useful for learning elusive Blue spells, but
there are monsters that are undefeatable by normal standards if it hadn't been
for !Control. The dragons in Exdeath's Castle are a prime example. The Hypno 
Crown, available to Mages and Clothes Jobs, boosts the success rate of 
!Control.

!Catch as an ability will likely never venture outside of the Beastmaster's
grasp, since it is made so much better by the Kornago Gourd, an Accessory only
that Job can equip. The Mime and Freelancer can make use of !Catch though, in
specific circumstances. !Catch basically comes down to you hunting down a
monster somewhere, going through the trouble of bringing it down to its knees,
Catching it (thereby losing its dropped item and Exp. gain), then keeping it
around until you can Release it versus a boss for major damage. It's a great
cannon, but a pain to keep loaded.

The only thing the Beastmaster does that is not sweet is !Tame, which is just
irrelevant. It's bugged; it was supposed to work on Magic Beasts, but now all
it does is NOT work on Magic Beasts and work on everything else. It sets Stop
for a very small period of time; you cannot properly keep a target subdued with
!Calm. Since the Stop spell is already around when you get this ability, and
since Stop is so much better in every way (longer duration, affects every kind
of target), !Calm is useless.

Position in optimal play:
Learn !Control ASAP with one character that is not also your designated Thief,
then forget about the Beastmaster until you need !Catch on three occassions.
Catch a Kornago to trade for the Kornago Gourd, !Catch an Ironback to defeat
Catoblepas in one shot and !Catch a Behemoth in the GBA and iOS/Android games
to get past that one NPC that desires one. I could see maybe Catching a 
Yellow Dragon versus Exdeath, but that's it. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.17   Chemist [CHEMIST-LINK]
**********************************

"Apothecaries who can mix powerful brews, and gain twice the benefit when
  drinking potions and ethers."

Stats:
Strength:    + 02
Agility:     + 03
Vitality:    + 06
Magic Power: - 04

Can equip: Knives, Staves, Hats, Light Helmets, Clothes, Robes, Armlets, Angel
  Robe
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus, Pharmacology

!Attack
!Drink
 ----
!Item

 15 ABP  Pharmacology
 30 ABP !Mix
 45 ABP !Drink
135 ABP !Recover
405 ABP !Revive

Pharmacology            15 ABP   Support ability
 Doubles the amount Potions, Hi-Potions, Ethers and Ether Dry items heal.

!Mix                    45 ABP   Action ability
 Allows the character to mix two items from your inventory to perform a move
that can range from healing and defensive options to damaging and debilitating
effects. For more info on !Mix, see [MIX-LINK]

!Drink                  90 ABP   Action ability
 Allows the character to drink one of the five Drinks you can find and purchase
in the game, gaining a variety of positive effects from them. A character with
the !Drink ability can only target himself with the Drinks, not other
characters. For more info on !Drink, see [DRINK-LINK]

!Recover               225 ABP   Action ability
 Removes Darkness, Poison, Mini, Toad, Silence, Confuse, Paralyze, Sleep and
Old status ailments on all characters. Was supposed to cure Petrify, but
doesn't.

!Revive                630 ABP   Action ability
 Revives all dead allies with 6.25 % their max HP at no MP cost.

As a Job:
The Chemist is probably the best self-buff unit in the game. Any worthwhile
battle can be started with setting Haste and doubling HP, even increasing level
if you want to. This comes at the cost of poor equipment options, though.
Merely Knives and Staves means you can only really boost Syldra and Holy at the
end of the game. Massive HP is useful for powerful Holy Breath and Dragon
Breath !Mix attack and certain Blue spells such as White Wind, ??? and
Self-Destruct as well. The Chemist is best used as a support character; the
healing/reviving backbone of a party that just never seems to die.

Taught abilities:
Pharmacology is trivial mostly, though 1000 HP healing is great in the second
third of the game. !Drink is a great self-buff ability that gives extra oomph
to all classes since doubling your HP with a Goliath's Tonic is just great.
!Drink also works like a charm on any character with Barehanded, since damage 
done with Fists is depended on level much more than other weapons' damage is. 
!Recover and !Revive are two commands you shouldn't need to use; though MT, 
you can the same thing ST in a skillset so much more versatile.

The kicker, obviously, is !Mix. !Mix is the best ability in the game, really.
It can revive and heal better than !White, has better buff possibilities then
anything ever and can deal a LOT of damage as well. There are downsides,
though. Mixing things is a bother since you need to scroll through your menu
all the time. In addition, it consumes items, and the more potent !Mix outcomes
uses the three items you'll only find as monster drops, this being the Turtle
Shell, the Dragon Fang and the Dark Matter. Especially damage-dealing Mixes
will always use these rare items. !Mix doesn't care about elemental boosting,
and has but a few attacks which run off Magic Power, so the difference between
Jobs you put it on is small. Chemists themselves are great since after a
Goliath Tonic, Dark Breath, Dragon Breath and Holy Breath are twice as
powerful. !Mix also features what is easily the best way of draining MP from
enemies, so it has this on Robe Jobs as well. I suggest learning !Mix with all
four characters; it doesn't take long, and the potential benefits are amazing.

Freelancer gains:
Chemist's stats are not very good. Pharmacology isn't very hot end-game, but if
you for some reason mastered Chemist early, then switched to a Freelancer,
1000 HP Hi-Potions are nice.

Position in optimal play:
Learn !Mix with all four characters, then forget about the Chemist. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.18   Geomancer [GEOMANCER-LINK]
**********************************

"Harnessing the power of their surroundings, they easily avoid pits and floors
  with damaging effects."

Stats:
Strength:    + 04
Agility:     + 02
Vitality:    + 04
Magic Power: + 24

Can equip: Knives, Bells, Hats, Robes, Armlets
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus,
  Magic Power bonus, Find Pits, Light Step

!Attack
!Gaia
 ----
!Item

 25 ABP !Gaia
 50 ABP  Find Pits
100 ABP  Light Step

!Gaia                   25 ABP   Action ability
 Can produce up to four different attacks depending on the current background
and the level of the user. For more info on !Gaia, see [GAIA-LINK]

Find Pits               75 ABP   Support ability
 Spots loose tiles in advance as opposed to tumbling down into them.

Light Step             175 ABP   Support ability
 Damage done by out-battle traps, spikes and lava are nullified for the entire
team. Statuses set are also circumvented.

As a Job:
Horrible. HORRIBLE! It's only useful stat is Magic Power, at which it is not as
potent as Black Mages and Summoners, more along the lines of Blue and White
Mages. It gets a little Strength and Agility boost, both of which mean noting
to it. It cannot equip Rods or Staves to boost spells. Its inherent abilities
are useless. It gets a theoretical saving grace in the Rune Chime which boosts
all elements except for Water, making it a grand !Black and !Summon user. This
is late-game, though. Very late-game, when you don't want to use Geomancers
anymore.

Taught abilities:
!Gaia is great, the others stink. !Gaia is a great ability as long as you
realize that it does not boost Magic Power and should be set on Jobs with high
Magic Power. !Gaia uses powerful attacks when you first get it, but the attacks
used are hardly upgraded. !Gaia is a thing of the past when you get to the
later stages of the game. Find Pits and Light Step are both abilities that can
be ignored if you have the Float spell present. In other words: get !Gaia,
get out.

Freelancer gains:
Find Pits and Light Step! Nothing to speak of.

Position in optimal play:
Waste of ABP, really. Float makes their support abilities worthless. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.19   Bard [BARD-LINK]
**********************************

"Musicians whose dulcet tones soothe savage beasts...or kill them."

Stats:
Strength:    - 08
Agility:     + 08
Vitality:    - 09
Magic Power: + 11

Can equip: Knives, Harps, Hats, Robes, Armlets
Freelancer gains: Agility bonus, Magic Power bonus

!Attack
!Sing
 ----
!Item

 25 ABP !Hide
 50 ABP  Equip Harps
100 ABP !Sing

!Hide / !Reveal         25 ABP   Action ability
 Runs away from the fight, becoming untargetable by any attack. While hiding,
no other action can be taken but to eventually return to the battlefield with
the !Reveal ability.

Equip Harps             75 ABP   Support ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Agility + 11 and base Freelancer Magic
Power + 11 and allows the character to equip Harps.

!Sing                  175 ABP   Action ability
 Allows the character to sing all songs learned by the party up to that point.
For more info on !Sing, see [SING-LINK]

As a Job:
Those stats! So painful. The Bard must have the blues. The worst Magic Power of
any Robe Job in the game. The second-lowest Stamina and therefor HP. The Bard
takes hits like a dusty old marshmallow, has horrible equipment options. Harps
are all useless except for Apollo's Harp, and only then versus Dragons and
the Undead. The Bard has got to be the worst Job in the game, the !Sing
skillset not counted. Offensively completely inept and unsuited for
traditional means of gaining offense (since no Rods and horrible survival
rates in the Front Row), the Bard should only be used for learning !Sing in
Drakenvale, the Pyramid of Moore and the Great Sea Trench where the Undead are
plentiful (thus learning !Sing and mastering the Job) and subsequently 
discarded to put !Sing on better Jobs. 

Taught abilities:
!Hide can be abused by having Zombie characters on the battlefield. !Hide your
remaining character(s) and have your invincible Zombies clear the field. Since
they'll only attack allies, you'll need Reflect Rings on them and weapons that
randomly cast spells, such as the Blitz Whip or Death Sickle. The spells will
be re-directed to the enemy, and you win! Beyond that, it's really just a
gimmick command. I find Equip Harps is actually useful since the Apollo's Harp
can deal peerless damage versus Undead and Dragon bosses, and those you target
with a Dragon Kiss. Since the Apollo's Harp 'attack' is actually a spell, a
Harp-wielding Summoner will be much more proficient with it than a Bard ever
will. !Sing is just a great debuff command. I do not much care for the stat-
increase Songs outside of the final Exdeath battle, but Requiem and the
Stop/Confuse songs are very useful in large stretches of the game. !Sing is
great on everything.

Freelancer gains:
No stats to speak of, no inherent abilities. Nada

Position in optimal play:
Switch to at least one Bard in Drakenvalse, the Pyramid of Moore and the Great
Sea Trench. Combine with an action ability that raises Magic Power and watch
the Requiem damage fly. Over the course of these three dungeons you should
master the Job and learn !Sing. You'll want at least one !Sing user by the end
of the game. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.20   Dancer [DANCER-LINK]
**********************************

"Fighters whose smooth moves confuse enemies, leaving blood on the dance
  floor."

Stats:
Strength:    + 05
Agility:     + 05
Vitality:    - 10
Magic Power: - 05

Can equip: Knives, Hats, Light Helmets, Clothes, Robes, Armlets, Man-Eater,
  Ribbon, Rainbow Dress, Red Slippers
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Agility bonus

!Attack
!Dance
 ----
!Item

 25 ABP !Flirt
 50 ABP !Dance
325 ABP  Equip Ribbons

!Flirt                  25 ABP   Action ability
 When successfully struck by Flirt, the enemy will replace the attack of the
next turn with a text message displaying "Entranced!". The Lamia's Tiara,
Rainbow Dress and Red Slippers double the chances of !Flirt working
successfully. Never works on creatures with a Heavy nature. The Berserk
status trumps "Entranced", and a target struck by both effects will simply
attack as if !Flirt hadn't been used.

!Dance                  75 ABP   Action ability
 Randomly chooses one out of four dances and executes it. The Lamia's Tiara,
Rainbow Dress and Red Slippers double the chances of Sword Dance appearing, and
remove the possibility of Tempting Tango altogether. For more info on !Dance,
see [DANCE-LINK]

Equip Ribbons          400 ABP   Support ability
 Allows a character to equip the Man-Eater, Ribbon, Rainbow Dress and Red
Slippers.

As a Job:
What's worse than a Mage without Magic Power? A rogue without Strength or
Agility! The Dancer has horrible stats; it's the only Job that loses more
stat points than it gains compared to a Freelancer, and it has the game's
lowest Stamina and HP. You won't get far with !Attack, and !Dance invites
the Dancer to take the Front Row; a risky gambit with so few HP to spare.
Without a useful support or action ability, the Dancer will be quite the
liability. You can either take advantage of Sword Dance, or work with the
fact that the Dancer can boost Earth- and Wind-elemental spells. If you want
to go with a Sword Dance set-up, it's advised to get a Lamia's Tiara at
the Ronka Ruins and supplement with Equip Bows/Whips/Axes to allow for
the Back Row. !Summon and !Blue need no explanation. All fun stuff aside, this
is one Job you can forget about in an optimal playthrough. 

Taught abilities:
!Flirt is a cute little stall option to stop anything not Heavy dead in its
tracks for a single round. I like it in a party with Berserkers or other
damage-heavy Berserk fighters; stall the enemy, let the others do the damage.
!Dance needs equipment that increases Sword Dance likeliness to be effective,
and only Mages (who lack the Strength) have those in the Lamia's Tiara. I do
find some use with Red and Blue Mages with !Dance, a Lamia's Tiara and a Rune
Blade, but that's a rare and late-game option. Equip Ribbons is nice on a
Dragoon since the Man-Eater accidentally doubles damage on Jump, opening up a
Dragoon with a Ribbon and a Man-Eater as a viable choice. It may also be
viable on a Ninja, who can already do a lot of damage due to inherent Dual-
Wield, and Black Mages and Summoners who have all the offense they need, as
long as you can boost elements.

Freelancer gains:
Nothing. Freelancers can already equip Ribbons, which are awesome. !Dance is
not very useful if you have more consistent means of dealing damage, and
!Flirt pales in comparison to the horrible things you can do to non-Heavy
targets in skillsets such as !Blue or !Mix.

Position in optimal play:
Useless, forget about it. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.21   Necromancer [NECROMANCER-LINK]
**********************************

"Dark wizards who are masters of the undead, and have no fear of the Dark
  Arts."

Stats:
Strength:    +  4
Agility:     +  1
Vitality:    + 21
Magic Power: + 29

Can equip: Rods, Hats, Robes, Armlets, Chaos Orb (unique effect)
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus, Magic Power
  bonus

!Attack
!Dark Arts
 ----
!Item

 15 ABP !Oath
 30 ABP !Dark Arts (level 1)
 45 ABP !Dark Arts (level 2)
 60 ABP !Dark Arts (level 3)
100 ABP !Dark Arts (level 4)
200 ABP !Dark Arts (level 5)
300 ABP  Undead

!Oath                   15 ABP   Action ability
 Calls forth a random demon as if used through the !Release command. For
more information, see [OATH-LINK]

!Dark Arts 1            45 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 13 and allows the character
to cast level 1 Dark Arts. For more info on !Dark Arts, see [DARKARTS-LINK]

!Dark Arts 2            90 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 17 and allows the character
to cast level 2 Dark Arts.

!Dark Arts 3           150 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 21 and allows the character
to cast level 3 Dark Arts.

!Dark Arts 4           250 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 25 and allows the character
to cast level 4 Dark Arts.

!Dark Arts 5           450 ABP   Action ability
 Gives the character base Freelancer Magic Power + 29 and allows the character
to cast level 5 Dark Arts.

 Undead                750 ABP   Support ability
Turns the character Undead. Similair to the effect of the Bone Mail, but
there are differences. Draining spells except for Drain Touch are inverted,
most healing spells and items deal damage instead. On living characters with
the Undead support ability, reviving spells and items set HP to a sinlge digit.
Character with the Undead support ability with Death set can be revived
normally.

As a Job:
 The Necromancer has the right stats, the right equipment options and the
right action ability. Its Magic Power is comparable to that of the Black Mage,
which is quite decent. Strength is irrelevant on a Necromancer, but the lack
of Agility penalty is nice. It's Stamina that is surprising; comparable to
that of a Knight! Ofcourse, healing can be a problem for the Necromancer, so
the additional HP is hardly unnecessary. The Necromancer has Drain Touch to
restore a bit of its HP, and White Wind can do it. Otherwise, you're stuck
'til the Necromancer bites the dust, at which point you can use revival spells
and items. Since the Necromancer is only available at the end of the game, it
has to compete with strong Freelancers and Mimes that can Dualcast powerful
Summon magic to outdamage the Necromancer while having more HP and not have
that pesky Undead property to consider. Still, if you've got no room for
!Dualcast, the Dark Arts outmuscle Black and Summon magic in the damage
department. Strongly consider one or more !Blue casters to complement the
Necromancer; White Wind is truly the best way of keeping the Necromancer alive.

Taught abilities:
!Oath is completely useless. Even the most powerful attack (Flare) barely
hits 1300 damage which doesn't cut it late-game. Undead can be used to protect
a character from Death spells and draining attacks. No enemy in the game will
use these attacks with such frequency and potency to require the Undead
support ability; it's a good thing it's not inherent on the Freelancer/Mime
after mastering the Necromancer. What the Necromancer brings to the table is
Dark Arts, simple. It's a great skillset to put on any Job with the ability
to equip Rods or even Knives (Hellwind is great).

Freelancer gains:
All four stats are boosted by the Necromancer, but none of them any higher
than other Jobs. Undead is NOT inherent to the Freelancer after mastering
the Necromancer Job. You get nothing here.

Position in optimal play:
Too little, too late. Technically useful to combine any weapon that boosts
Air-elemental attack with Hellwind for training purposes, but you're pretty
much done with the game by this point. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.22   Oracle [ORACLE-LINK]
**********************************

"Soothsayers who can predict natural disasters - and direct them at foes."

Stats:
Strength:    - 09
Agility:     - 01
Vitality:    - 04
Magic Power: + 36

Can equip: Staves, Hats, Robes, Armlets
Freelancer gains: Magic Power bonus

!Attack
!Condemn
 ----
!Item

 20 ABP !Condemn
 50 ABP !Predict
150 ABP  ABP Up
300 ABP  Read Ahead

!Condemn                20 ABP   Action ability
 Ten spells from the White and Black school can be cast for no MP cost, but
with a timer that depends on the Oracle Job level of the caster. Doesn't work
on Heavy targets. For more info on !Condemn, see [CONDEMN-LINK]

!Predict                70 ABP   Action ability
 Randomly does stuff depending on the caster's last digit of MP and the
target's last digit of HP. For more info on !Predict, see [PREDICT-LINK]

ABP Up                 220 ABP   Support ability
 Gives the character 150 % normal ABP gained after a battle.

Read Ahead             520 ABP   Support ability
 Sharply decreases random encounter rate.

As a Job:
 The Oracle has the highest Magical damage output in the game! Sadly, this
feature is immediately gimped by the fact it needs another action ability to
really damage anything. Also, it cannot equip Rods or Bells. It has really
crappy stats on the physical side but all you really need to do is give the
Oracle !White 6 (Holy) or !Summon 5 (Bahamut/Leviathan) and you won't regret
using one.

Taught abilities:
!Condemn is just REALLY crappy. It doesn't take any MP, never misses and can be
used regardless of Silence, Toad or Reflect on the target. On the other hand,
even the fastest timer of 10 increments is too slow. The only mildly useful
feature is Doom, which kills when the timer reaches 0. It's like a Death
Potion, only it sucks. Theoretically best used on a Summoner with the Magus
Rod, but in practice best used not at all. Read Ahead is nice if you want to
explore dungeons as unhindered as possible; it's more a gameplay feature than a
strategic support ability, much like Sprint and Lure.

!Predict deserves its own paragraph. It's only useful in the longer battles, as
it won't execute at all in shorter battles. You can really only use a 'safe'
prediction 40 % of the time and its power is quite random. The sheer ingenuity
of the ability intrigues me, as well as the fact you really need to have no
friends at all to learn how to use this command. I feel this ability stinks,
but it's fun to toy around with it. If you must use it, it's best used on a
character with a broad selection of elemental-boosts, so those with Rods or the
Rune Chime will work. Note that damage comes from level only, so Magic Power is
irrelevant; a Monk could do it as effectively as an Oracle.

Freelancer gains:
The highest Magic score in the game; Freelancers who want all the high stats
will want to master this.

Position in optimal play:
Train your mages until you master this Job. The action abilities are borderline
useless, but Read Ahead makes the Sealed Temple much more bearable. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.23   Cannoneer [CANNONEER-LINK]
**********************************

"Tinkerers with the know-how to combine items into weapons both beautiful and
  destructive"

Stats:
Strength:    + 05
Agility:     + 05
Vitality:    - 10
Magic Power: - 05

Can equip: Knives, Swords, Shields, Hats, Light Helmets, Clothes, Robes,
  Armlets
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Agility bonus

!Attack
!Open Fire
 ----
!Item

 50 ABP !Open Fire
150 ABP  Exp Up
300 ABP !Combine

!Open Fire              50 ABP   Action ability
 Performs a non-elemental, unblockable attack against a single target that will
attempt to set a random status ailments (Darkness, Poison, Confuse or Death).
For more info on !Open Fire, check [OPENFIRE-LINK].

 Exp Up                200 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Increases the amount of Experience Points gained by the character with Exp Up
set by 50%.

!Combine               500 ABP   Action ability
 Allows the character to combine a Buckshot, Blastshot or Blitzshot item with
another consumable to perform a multi-target attack which can various
elemental, status-inducing or miscellaneous properties. For more information on
!Combine, check [COMBINE-LINK].

As a Job:
The Cannoneer is quite decent. His main selling point as a Job is !Open Fire,
which does damage comparable to a normal Attack coming from a Job that was
meant to use !Attack. This situation gives the Cannoneer the added bonus of
being able to take the Back Row and equip weapons that he doesn't need to
attack with but otherwise help him out, such as the Main Gauche. In addition,
the random status ailments will prove to be useful, and !Open Fire is even
unblockable, so there's that bonus as well. The Cannoneer does, however, lack
the true Oomph of other Jobs, and its damage output is difficult to increase.

Taught abilities:
!Open Fire is a great action ability for Thieves, Bards and Dancers; it's a
Back Row OK damage option that acts independent of Strength or Magic Power and
is well-suited for support of less offensively-inclined Jobs. Exp Up shouldn't
really see much use; level-grinding isn't very effective in this game, partly
due to your ability to raise Level in-battle. If you must have a Master File
with level 99 characters, this ability will be a godsend to you. The real gem
of the Job is obviously !Combine; it's fairly damaging, resources aren't
generally an issue and it provides the party with a way to set several status
ailments without taking normal magical hit algorithms in account. Like !Open
Fire, !Combine uses neither Strength nor Magic Power and is thus equally
effective regardless of stats; the elemental attacks are affected by elemental
boosts though, so !Combine is more effective on those characters with Rods,
Staves or the Rune Chime.

Freelancer gains:
The stats aren't interesting, but !Combine is a solid option even for
Freelancers in some battles. Mastering the Cannoneer won't be too much of a
chore.

Position in optimal play:
!Combine is a great ability to deal 3000 damage to all targets, and the flat
75% to inflict status ailments is great versus Halicarnassus (Mini) Neo
Exdeath (Slow) and Enuo (Slow) whose level and Magic Evasion make sure other
means of setting the ailment or status will likely fail. One character mastering
the Cannoneer Job is enough. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.24   Gladiator [GLADIATOR-LINK]
**********************************

"Skilled warriors who can master any blade."

Stats:
Strength:    + 26
Agility:     + 14
Vitality:    +  3
Magic Power: - 14

Can equip: Knives, Swords, Knightswords, Lances, Axes, Bows, Shields,
  Heavy Helmets, Light Helmets, Heavy Armor, Clothes, Guantlets
Freelancer gains: Strength bonus, Agility bonus, Vitality bonus

!Attack
!Finisher
 ----
!Item

 30 ABP  Lure
 70 ABP !Finisher
150 ABP  Long Range
450 ABP !Bladeblitz

Lure                    30 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
 Sharply increases random encounter rate.

!Finisher              100 ABP   Action ability
 Performs either a 9999-damage elemental attack of the character's Crystal
spirit, inflicts a Critical Hit with the equipped weapon if possible, or
fails. The odds of these three possibilities depend on the Gladiator Job level
obtained by the user. For more info on !Finisher, see [FINISHER-LINK].

Long Range             250 ABP   Support ability (needs to be equipped)
Allows the character to deal full damage with the equipped weapon(s) from the
Back Row, regardless of the weapon.

!Bladeblitz            700 ABP   Action ability
 Performs a physical attack with the equipped weapon on all enemy targets. All
strikes are affected by target's Evasion and Row modifier; the damage done is
only 75 % of !Attack's damage. Row modifiers are ignored if the weapon used
ignores Row modifiers. Random spellcasting and replacement functions
will be ignored, though all versions of critical hits may appear normally.
MP-driven criticals will subtract MP once for every target struck.
Elemental properties are applied as they would normally be. The Lilith Rod
will apply the "Entranced!" effect to all non-Heavy targets it strikes.
!Bladeblitz cannot work with weapons that cast spells, such as Harps and the
Wonder Wand.

As a Job:
The Gladiator certainly is unique; it has the highest Strength of all Heavy
Armor Jobs, and ties with the Monk for game's highest Strength altogether.
Impressive Agility as well, but the Gladiator has crap Stamina (and thus HP)
for a Heavy Armor Job and is therefor not well suited to take hits, especially
magical ones as he has neither the HP nor the Magic Defense to survive them
well. The Gladiator's got the most impressive !Attack command of the game; he's
able to equip a wide variety of weapons which allows him to exploit nature
weaknesses of Dragons, Magic Beasts and Aevis creatures whenever he encounters
them. In addition, he's a great character to put !Aim or !Jump on when giving
the relevant weapon; he's a more powerful archer than the Ranger, and a better
Jumper than the Dragoon. Giving the Gladiator either a Bow with !Aim or a Lance
with !Jump also boosts his survivability, since he becomes Back Row OK. The
Aegis Shield is a supreme choice for the Gladiator as it'll cover his big
weakness, this being magical attacks.

!Finisher is a gamble that is not always well evaluated; Courante's FAQ, for
instance, advocates !Finisher against everything as soon as you get it. 9999
damage regardless! The odds of this attack are 50 % at best though, and when
adequately prepared and normally leveled, it is often easy to match the average
damage output as well as maintain a level of certainty. But it's hard to go
wrong with !Finisher, as it'll deal that much coveted 9999 damage elemental
attack every now and again, and it looks awesome.

Taught abilities:
Lure is a game feature, useful for grinding or when you're searching out a rare
encounter or something. I have trouble finding a good use for Long Range; the
only Jobs that necessarily holds the Front Row and would do well to go to the
back are the Thief, Ninja and Dancer, which may as well learn !Summon 5,
!Open Fire or Equip Whips/Equip Bows by the time you actually get the
Gladiator. Now, !Finisher obviously works as well on any Job as it does on the
Freelancer, and is a great option to give Thieves, Bards, Chemists and Dancers
a shot at some really decent damage. !Finisher works best when Gladiator is
mastered, obviously. !Bladeblitz isn't too hot; it's better to take out targets
one a time with a strong elemental attack or strategic status ailment; throwing
damage around is for Summoners, not physical attackers. Break Spellblade +
!Bladeblitz is a fun combo though.

Freelancer gains:
If you want perfect stats on your Freelancer you'll have to master Monk anyway,
so that perfect Strength isn't an issue. I wouldn't put !Finisher on a
Freelancer with the existence of !Spellblade and/or !Rapid Fire either, and
there are no inherent abilities the Freelancer assumes from the Gladiator.
Useless to master, but fun to use.

Position in optimal play:
None, really. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 6.25   Mime [MIME-LINK]
**********************************

"Skilled mimics who can copy allies' actions perfectly"

Stats:
Strength:    maximum + 26, Monk/Gladiator
Agility:     maximum + 16, Thief
Vitality:    maximum + 26, Monk
Magic Power: maximum + 36, Oracle

Can equip: Knives, Rods, Staves, Shields, Heavy Armor, Clothes, Robes,
  Moonring Blade, Rising Sun, Twin Lance, Angel Robe, Thief's Gloves

Can possess these inherent qualities: Cover, Barehanded, Counter, Find
Passages, Sprint, Vigilance, Learning, Magic Shell, First Strike Dual-Wield,
Light Step, Shiradori, Pharmacology

!Mimic
 ----
 ----
 ----

999 ABP !Mimic

!Mimic                 999 ABP   Action ability
 Copies last ally's move without expanding resources.

As a Job:
The Mime is neither a 'normal' Job nor like the Freelancer. It's really
confusing if you're lacking in brainsmarts. The Mime shares the Freelancer's
ability to take the best of all Jobs; when you mastered the Monk Job, the Mime
Job will have its good stats and inherent abilities, just as the Freelancer
will. This gives the Mime potentially awesome stats and all the nice inherent
abilities you grew to love during the rest of the game. It is somewhat 'gimped'
compared to the Freelancer in equipment options, but since it can equip Rods,
Staves and Shields, the Mime has all equipment a spellcaster could ever want.
In addition to great equipment options (it really only misses the Rune Chime),
it has THREE ability slots to fill rather than two; !Attack and !Item will be
added as options as soon as you get access to the Mime Job, and you get to
choose three abilities. Among the options here are !Dualcast and two schools of
magic. The Mime is the best spellcasting Job in the game, hands down.

Taught abilities:
Sucks. !Mimic is nice on occasion; you could have a character perform an
expensive !Dualcast (double Bahamut or double Meteor), then using !Mimic on all
until whatever bothered you is dead, but that's a boring, inflexible and cheap
tactics that isn't going to make the game fun anytime soon. Beyond 'hit the
ultra-kill button again without using MP', !Mimic isn't too hot.

!Mimic:
- Mimics (Defend)
- Mimics !Call by releasing a random Summon Beast, not the same one
- Mimics !Animals by conjuring a random woodland friend
- Mimics !Jump attacks when the Jump is made; a landing isn't considered
  something to Mimic
- Mimics !Zeninage by using up Gil just like using the command itself
- Mimics !Item, !Mix, !Throw and !Combine without using any further items
- Mimics counterattacks due to Counter and Magic Barrier
- picks the same target when possible, but retargets if the mimicked target is
  not available anymore
- targets self when the mimicked attack automatically targets self (such as
  !Guard, !Spellblade, etc.)

Freelancer gains:
There's the thing, right. Nothing, as the Mime itself gains stuff from other
Jobs.

Position in optimal play:
None. Less experienced playe