Arc the Lad II / Arc Arena Character and Item Development FAQ This FAQ is copyright 2003 by Paul Sche. No part of this document may be altered. Distribution of this document is free of charge and may not be included as part of a transaction. Posting of this document, either in part or in its entirety in sites other than gamefaqs.com requires the consent from the author, whom can be contacted by email at email@example.com. Version 1.00 January 31, 2003-This is the first time I've written a FAQ. Although this is the first version, all sections are completed. However, feel free to email me if there is a mistake somewhere, or if you have some information to contribute (see the end of the FAQ.) Credit will be acknowledged to where it's due. Version 1.01 March 22, 2003-Added contents in section II-Arena Battles, section III- In Game Rare Items and section VI-Secrets. Information on obtaining Light Pole is contributed by Orlandu17 and is described in section III. Version 1.02 June 18, 2003-Added contents in section I-Item Modification Facilities, section II-Arena Battles and section VI-Secrets. Information on gaining control of human and summoned monster characters in the Arena Team Battle is contributed by Ed Perkowski. Version 1.03 August 22, 2003-Added contents in section V-Wanted Monsters Locations and Treasures and VI-Secrets. Corrected a mistake in section I-Item Modification Facilities. Information on obtaining Docsun's Ruby is contributed by Daniel Dainwood. Among the three games in the Arc the Lad Collection, Arc the Lad II has the unique property to convert saved data to and from the Arc Arena Monster Tournament. The development of characters and items is one of the most important aspects of the game rather than blindly leveling up by consuming copious amounts of Full Power Fruits, Rubies, and the Yellow Ribbon. Yet there are very little addressed in this regard. This is partially due to the planning of the game- that there are adequate challenges for those who seek them, but still allow casual players to complete the game and enjoy the full story by designing extraordinarily high level and HP limits, with easy ways to gain levels or parameters. Unlike in ATL I, each character can gain hundreds of levels in a very short amount of time by duplicating and using items that actually increase levels. There are not too many games that aim to satisfy players with such a wide range of caliber. It is natural to take the most obvious way out, but then beating the game would be trivial and I wouldn't be writing this. Instead, the purpose of this FAQ is to focus on the actual development of the characters. A character equipped with fully developed weapons and accessories, and completed training of all of the skills is easily a match for the same character dozens of levels higher, but poorly equipped and poorly trained. The 1P vs. 2P battle in Arc Arena is also only applicable to characters with limited levels and HP to compete since there is no way to finish a fight within the turn limit otherwise. Contents I. Item Modification Facilities- Combine Shop and Smith Shop II. Arena Battles- Team Battles, Tournament Battles, and Arena Prizes III. In Game Rare Items IV. Character Development, Deployment, and Optimal Equipment V. Wanted Monsters Locations and Treasures VI. Secrets Acknowledgements I. Item Modification Facilities During the early parts of the game, utilizing the combine shop is the best method of obtaining items with reasonable power and modification potential. Later on, however, many of these items will become obsolete and take up valuable inventory space. Thus, combined items that are obsolete should be removed from the inventory as the game progresses. However, these items are free of charge and can be sold for a handsome profit. On the other hand, having well developed smith shops is absolutely essential to unlock the true potential of weapons and accessories. Combine Shop The combine shops; both in-game and in Arc Arena, do not require special preparations to unlock options. Simply bring the necessary ingredients (they must be in your inventory, equipped items don't count) and choose to combine. Without considering a particular glitch, the opportunities of procuring most ingredients are listed below. (For information on the glitch, see the Secrets section.) IMPORT requires that the item be found in ATL I with the data converted into ATL II. Collect these items in the in-game Chongara Shop. Combined Item Ingredient First Available Location Spatha Kaiser Glove Arc Arena 3-team battle #3 Small Sword Yudo Village Native's Hut LightLong Sword EarthLong Sword Drop- see Rare Items section IceLong Sword Southern Tower 4F FlameLong Sword Arc Arena 3-team battle #15 WindLong Sword Balbalard S.R., lower left path. Falchion EarthLong Sword Drop- see Rare Items section Long Sword Gallarno's House (before defeating Slasher.) Taburl Crown Ax Yagos S.R. B2 Gale Bandanna Aldia Skyport (talk to hostage right after the first fight.) Silent Massacre Warpick Gruga's initial equipment Scimitar Arc Arena 3-team battle #4 Beam Ax FlameHand Ax Arc Arena 5-team battle #13 Drowned Ax Arc Arena 3-team battle #14 Dual Ball Light Flail Prodias East Shop- purchase Spark Flail Romalia Chimera Lab (Lieza and Gogen's scene) Assassin Dagger Dark Smasher Arc Arena 5-team battle #2 Gladius Arc Arena 3-team battle #2 Dual Knife Slasher After returning from Yagos Isle, in The morning following Shante's intrusion, check Shu's bed where Lieza slept before leaving the room or accessing the save diary. Defender Yagos S.R. B1 Magic Nail Brass Knuckle Zariban S.R. B5, path north to the guardian's force. Spirit Seed Steal from Balzack. Stone Boots Crush Boots Lost Forest (from the first screen in the forest, go one screen up and then one screen right.) Mirror Arc Arena 3-team battle #5 Dagger Boots Tri-Shot Arc Arena 3-team battle #13 Scale Legs Arc Arena 5-team battle #6 Dragon Boots Needle Shoes Palencia Tower 32nd floor Super Boots Past Misro- complete statue pushing puzzle. Salamander FlameSnake Whip Arc Arena 5-team battle #10 Scale Legs Arc Arena 5-team battle #6 Fibre Stick Wood Club Prodias East Shop- purchase Light Pole Drop- see Rare Items section Nuru-nuru Dropped by Mummy in Yagos S.R. Astral Pole Fibre Stick Combine-must have acquired the Light Pole (see Rare Items section) Studded Club White House, first door after sewers. Mirage Wand Change Staff Arc Arena 3-team battle #9 Purple Mem Grass Arc Arena Chongara Shop- purchase Extra Rod Scale Wand Drop- see Rare Item section Battle Stick Banza Mountains Micro Bomber Killer Sound Graunoln Tower Guard Romalia Inner City Double Moon Light Sickle Clenia Isle Clenia Shop- purchase Dark Weapon Graunoln Poisoner Arsenic Mask Clenia Isle Training Rock Poison Arc Arena Chongara Shop- purchase Antidote Nut Drop- various poison using monsters Elven Chain Wind Robe Arc Arena 3-team battle #11 Violet Necklace Arc Arena 5-team battle #8 Light Robe Decorator Clenia Isle Vacant House Cape Arc Arena 5-team battle #4 Ruby Arena Exchange- 4600 Seum Light Charm Earth Charm Arc Arena 5-team battle #5 Ice Charm Arc Arena 3-team battle #1 Flame Charm Arc Arena Tournament 14 wins IMPORT Wind Charm Arc Arena 3-team battle #8 Chaos Tanzanite Tanzanite Clenia Isle Training Rock Sleepless Card Arc Arena Tournament 10 wins IMPORT Sunglasses Arc Arena 5-team battle #3 Romancing Stone Romancing Stone 1 IMPORT Romancing Stone 2 IMPORT Romancing Stone 3 IMPORT Romancing Stone 4 IMPORT Smith Shop 1. Training the smith shops The two types of smith shops, Novice and Master serve different roles. The in game novice shop is located in Prodias and the in game master shop is located in Brakia. However, since the two shops are located away from each other and their individual accessibilities are often restricted by story flow, it is better to develop the ones in Arc Arena instead. After Lieza and Paundit joins you, the Arc Arena is available when these two characters are in your current roster in a save file, even after you have entered the final dungeon. The smith shops will not offer much variety at the beginning. The smiths must be trained to be able to provide additional services. To accomplish this task, repeatedly have them perform the task of raising item levels. (See bwong's ATL2 FAQ for more detailed description on developing the smith shops. I'm not the first to describe this procedure.) The well-known item duplication trick does not allow transfer of funds. However, you can duplicate items and then sell them for money. The first time Arc Arena is accessed, the most valuable item in your inventory is probably the Gale Bandanna, obtained after the first story battle. Duplicating this item and selling them will allow reasonably quick cash flow. You must then purchase a lot of cheap items, hundreds needed in total, and raise their levels to maximum before selling them to create inventory space. To save on funds, create a file for 2P and stock it with duplicated cheap weapons. Transfer them to your main file for 1P and raise the levels of these weapons to their max. Then load the 2P file to transfer more unmodified weapons and repeat the cycle. Continue until the desired options are unlocked, and SAVE your game to keep the developed smiths. The options you want to open up are the "Increase Max Level" for the novice smith and "Increase Off. /Def." For the master smith (There is an additional unlockable option for the master smith shop- Personalize, but it is more of a bane than a boon. Items personalized can neither be transferred, unless equipped on a captured monster other than Paundit, nor shared by other party members.) Once these two options are unlocked, which could cost a couple hours, you will be finally able to develop items to their full extent. 2. Development caps For each item in the game, there are three characteristics listed under information. The current level, the maximum level, and the primary parameter of the item (offense value for a weapon, defense value for an accessory or a consumable item) shown as a fraction: current value / value at max level. The effectiveness of the item is primarily governed by these three values. When the options in the smith shop are unlocked, each of these values can be increased for a fee, thereby increasing the effectiveness of the item. Development of an item, however, is often interrupted, as the item would be declared "maximum level reached." The message indicates that the item has been locked with at least one of the four development caps. These four development caps limit item development and are interconnected to each other in a particular pattern: a. Level cap- this cap occurs when the current item level equals the max item level. Further increase of item level is impossible. Incurring this cap also results in the addition of the Max Level cap. b. Max Level cap- further increase of the maximum level of an item is impossible. This cap is imposed if current level equals max level, or if max level equals 15. c. Max Off/Def cap- further increase of the maximum offense/defense value is impossible. For items with the description "Name + number", the cap occurs when the number equals 9. For items without a number description, there is still a fixed value that is more difficult to determine. d. Random cap- this annoying cap occurs randomly during a smith operation (either during "Increase Max Level" or during "Increase Max Off/Def and disables both options.) This is the cap that will test your patience. In short, cap a results in cap b, and cap d results in both cap b and cap c. The most logical sequence of item development (in Arc Arena) is therefore as follows: a. Develop the Max Level of the target item. Check after each operation. If cap d is incurred, go back to Sania and LOAD the game, if cap d is not incurred, go back to Sania and SAVE the game. Continue until the Max Level equals 14, and cap d is not in effect. That is, both "Increase Max Level" and "Increase Off/Def" are still available. Skip this step if the intended item already has its item level matching its max item level. b. Develop Max Off/Def to maximum, with cap c incurred. Check after each operation. If cap d is in effect, go back to Sania and LOAD your game. If cap d is not in effect, SAVE your game instead. To distinguish cap c from cap d, check after the operation for both the options to "Increase Max Level" and "Increase Off/Def." If the option for "Increase Max Level" is still available but the option for "Increase Off/Def" is not, the development cap incurred is cap c. If both options are not available, the development cap is cap d. As for items with cap a incurred (and therefore cap b also,) the only way to tell if you have reached the maximum is to repeatedly try. If a particular upgrade step results in a cap twenty times in a row, it is fairly certain that the maximum has been reached. c. Continue finishing the development for "Increase Max Level" and maximize the effectiveness of the item. It doesn't matter if cap d is incurred in this step. d. For certain items, the option to "Increase Item Level" will also increase a secondary parameter (i.e. Leveling up a Tanzanite may give additional status protection, leveling up a MagicIllusion Robe may increase its magic parameter bonus.) Perform the operation on this type of items and make sure that the secondary parameter has also leveled up similarly. To view the value of the secondary parameter, choose to equip the item on a character with a blank slot and note the bonuses. e. The entire procedure requires a large amount of Goz as well as time commitment. Obviously you should only modify one copy of one item at a time and later duplicate it. Since there are a wide variety of items, see the Optimal Equipment section for information on which ones to modify. The efforts for fully developing an item are well rewarded since most items will not grant parameter bonuses anywhere close to the maximum value when you first obtain them. Even the most powerful weapons such as the Corpse Edge (Atk+77 / Increase Offense on level-up,) Red Shoes +9 (Atk+74 / Range+2,) or Fabulous Sword (Atk+71 / Inflicts Confusion, Sleep, Poison, Darkness, Silence) only provide a small fraction of their full power if left undeveloped. However, don't wait for powerful weapons to appear before commencing development. During the opening scenes even though the weapons you can buy in Indigos right after Lieza joins are very weak, once fully developed they would serve you well until you acquire the Silver Noah. II. Arena Battles There are three types of battles in the Arc Arena. The team battles feature selecting characters in your party to battle arena teams using AI. The tournament battle allows manual control of your characters, but the battle is a test of endurance with no opportunity to replenish inventory during the battle since enemies do not drop items at all and monster capture is impossible. The 1P vs. 2P battle allows characters from two different save files to compete against each other. 1. Team battles There are two versions of the battles- the 3-team battle and the 5-team battle. The basic difference between the two is not the number of teams, but the selection of characters. The three-team battles only allow captured monsters to participate, while the 5-team battle allows anyone in your active roster to participate. Since the AI normally controls the actions of your team as well as the enemy team, there is no combat strategy involved. Rather, it is the type of characters and the equipment and abilities equipped that determines the outcome (a la FFVI coliseum.) Therefore, your goal is to assemble a team of monsters that even a moron can use to win. However, once you have unlocked the human and summon monster characters, controlling your own character becomes possible (see Secrets section), which is a good thing consider that the AI is not capable of using these characters, which are generally weaker but diverse in options. The recommendations to the earliest capture monsters for the roles of combatants go to the Freezy monsters found in the White House Sewers. Simply catch a single Freezy and keep it in your roster. Once you progress to the point where Lieza returns to Forles along with a few summon monsters, you will find the Power Fist equipped on one of them. This weapon, when fully developed, gives an attack bonus of almost 50 points. Simply equip this on your Freezy, enter the Arc Arena and duplicate the monster (until you have eleven.) For monsters lower than level 40, these are some of the most effective monsters to use in the team battles and will give you very high chances to win each fight in the 3-team battle. However, if absolute domination is your goal, you might want to hold off until you have a fully developed Meow Fang in your possession. The 5-team battle is trickier. Unless your human characters and summon monsters are extremely powerful (the enemy team matches your own levels, so equip powerful weapons and accessories rather than leveling up,) they will probably not be effective under AI control. Choose the first three teams to be Freezy armies (and Paundit) and hope to grab three winning rounds first. With the Meow Fangs, the attacks of your monsters (either physical or breath attacks) will be quite deadly. If you do not gain the three wins before your monster teams are exhausted, don't count on the human characters to save the day. 2. Tournament battles In this configuration, you can select a number of teams. But only the first team will decide how far you go. By the time you get to your second team you won't have anything in your inventory to support its members. The characters are to be manually controlled and attempt to survive as many enemy parties as you can use only what you can carry. Notice that if you have used a character in the team battles earlier, you would need to change their controls back to manual during the pre- battle menu. The best prize is offered if you can defeat 50 enemy parties. The limited inventory is the least of your concerns. Since each successive team surpasses the previous one by 4 to 5 levels, at later battles, the enemies will be around 200 levels above your own. Your physical attacks won't even touch them! You can't even afford to miss since there is a turn limit on each of the battles. Due to the difficulty of winning 50 battles, the choice of your starting team is extremely important. You should place all your bets on the very first team that you assemble and equip accordingly. The best choices to pick for the first team are Arc, Elc, Gruga, and Sania/Hemo-ji. Make sure that Arc, Elc, and Gruga have all learned L.3 Invincible. This skill grants the user invincibility against physical attacks and magical attacks. (The only attack that penetrates the Invincible skill is the bombardment of the Graunoln, encountered in the Greyshinne Border after Sania joins.) Elc learns Invincible automatically, but Arc and Gruga can add the skill once their levels are high enough, above 110 or so. Do not attempt this challenge if your levels are too high. (Pitting L.250 characters vs. a L.400 healer with over 1500HP? All the battle turns in the world won't get you anywhere.) Merely learning the Invincible skill is not enough, you must also train them to L.3. Simply relying on counterattacks will not get you far; you must be able to actively attack to finish each battle within the turn limit of twenty. Instead of using magic skills, it is recommended to also obtain L.3 Extract (which is not an option for Arc. Use another skill instead so pay attention to enemy elemental affiliations) along with a fully developed powerful weapon, a Romancing Stone (if you didn't convert ATL I data, or if the data doesn't contain all four fragments, forget about taking this challenge), and a Mega Revival Dust+9 equipped for each of the three characters. As for the fourth character, you can either choose Sania for her Transfer ability (works even for characters under the effect of Invincible) or Hemo-ji for its L.3 Chongara Bomb ability. Equip this character similarly as you can't afford to run out of MP during battles. For the arena selection, keep in mind that the enemies in later battles will always move before you do. Therefore you want to choose a wide arena without obstacles with your characters positioned as close to each other as possible. This way, after their initial move, you will be in range for the first act-L.3 Invincible. Follow suit for two turns of L.3 Extract over as many enemies as you can position in the effect range (for Arc, use the most damaging skill you have according to enemy element affiliations.) The fourth character either transfers turns to the character with the most damage potential (for Sania) or simply use L.3 Chongara Bomb over and over while retreating to the back corners of the arena (for Hemo-ji.) Even with these tactics, sometimes, the enemy party will include a healer (i.e. Gepettoh) who can heal damage and waste your turns. The best courses of action are 1) to damage the healer moderately, while severely damage another character not too close to the healer. The healer will be drawn to heal the severely damaged monster. This is your cue to finish the healer within the turn once and for all, or 2) cast Arc's Magic Shield on the healer and deplete its HP before Magic Shield wears off. Once you rack up 50 consecutive wins, simply allow your teams to be wiped out to exit the tournament. Be warned that each of your characters in the first team will probably have gathered 50 levels or so, making them extremely unbalanced in normal game play. So you might want to save this on a separate file and transfer the prizes to your earlier save instead to avoid the imbalance. 3. 1P vs. 2P This battle mode allows you to pit characters in a save file against those from another save file. The choice of characters is rounded down to the more inexperienced side. If both files have human characters and summoned monsters enabled, then the match will allow selection for any character. If at least one of the two files does not have that option enabled due to failure to complete the three-team battles, then character selection of both sides will be restricted to captured monsters only. The battle allows wager of an item, a monster, or nothing but pride itself before a match. The hidden feature of this battle mode, however, is the ability to control both parties at the same side. This allows the discovery of many hidden secrets (i.e. magic defense is determined by the base value of Mag. Ability only, because equipping Sania with a Magic Card and two Fabulous Rings do not reduce magic damage received.) Although your characters can't technically die, any action performed in the Arc Arena will not count towards the magic experience of the characters. No matter how many times you attack with or receive effects of magic skills, you won't be gaining any progress towards leveling up existing skills or learning new ones. 4. Arena Prizes Tempting as it may be to take everything in the warehouse, you only have a limited space to stash away any items or monsters you have won. The combine list in Section I include ingredients unlocked as prizes (Look up Billy Lee's Walkthrough/FAQ if you are interested in the full list of item and monster prizes.) Frankly, the majority of the item prizes are not worth a slot in your limited inventory space. The main reason for completing the 3-team and 5-team battles is to acquire the powerful Mega Revival Dust+9. Of course, once you finish these two challenges there is no reason to keep that army of Freezys. Including Paundit, you only have space for twelve monsters. So which ones should you keep? Since you're getting rid of your Freezys, there is no reason to keep any monsters that are worse off. You can complete the game with levels in the low 80s, without getting any HP bonuses or using the parameter enhancing items, even if you've converted data with all ATL I characters at level 60. Hence there is no reason to acquire monsters with levels higher than that. Remember that monsters cannot equip accessories, so the choice of weapons and MP capacity must be sufficient to ensure usefulness. Finally, the abilities of the monster should match the parameters and be useful right off the bat. (Monsters with skills depending on their magic ability need to have high Magic parameter and high MP. Monsters using mainly physical attacks need sufficient Defense and Agility parameters.) The top three monsters recommended are: 1. Chimera, L.68, HP 234, MP 121, Atk 50, Def 40, Mag 15 This is a flying monster with the Cure spell and the immobilizing Mesmerize Breath. Once you equip it with a fully developed Meow Fang, the power of both of these skills will quadruple in power. In addition, it has solid attack and defensive parameters as well as maximum reaction abilities to withstand enemy strikes. The various addable elemental breaths are useful to take advantage of the enemy elemental association. Even bosses can be taken care of with just a few breath attacks. If you run out of MP, simply fight a couple battles physically with the Styx equipped. 2. Arch Knight, L. 76, HP 276, MP 163, Atk 43, Def 40, Mag 20 A physical oriented monster capable of equipping a Sword. The short range is not really a disadvantage since it can use the Invincible skill. By equipping a powerful sword, it can charge a couple times in safety, move into range and avoid damage by invoking Invincible, and release the power on a boss to take it out in a single strike. The various immobilization skills are useful against regular enemies. 3. Arch Gargoyle, L. 60, HP 272, MP 162, Atk 35, Def 33, Mag 17 A flying monster capable of using spears, an indirect weapon type. Its HP levels are easily on par with monsters 20 levels higher. If you have converted ATL I data, this monster will not cause a level imbalance at all. In battlefields with out-of-the-way chests, this monster will be more than capable of retrieving them while dispatching enemies en route. Its usefulness increases, as more of its innate skills are unlocked. Changing the classes of monsters is not just a superficial distinction. It also affects which skills the monster will acquire after gaining sufficient magic experience. So you will get different skill sets depending on whether you kept the monster in its original class or changed to a different class. III. In Game Rare Items In Arc II, the best items in the game are not necessarily purchased or found in chests. Items with the highest potential for development are often dropped or stolen from monsters. Since there are well over 300 monster types and many of these treasures are rare drops, acquiring some of these treasures could take a considerable amount of effort. To maximize the chances of acquiring them, the first thing to do is to acquire the two accessories that have the description of increasing monster drop rate- the Unicorn Horn and the Shell. Take heed that although the description of the two items are identical, I suspect that they actually serve different purposes. Characters with both accessories equipped are far more likely to cause a rare drop upon a kill than characters equipping two copies of the same accessory. The sources of these two accessories are a) in-game Chongara's Shop if you have imported converted data, or in the Forbidden Ruins if you haven't or b) the Seum exchange in the Clenia and Misro Arenas. The listing price of the Unicorn Horn is 9000 Seum while the Shell will set you back 8200 Seum. Instead of accumulating the total of 17200 Seum, simply save a game with 9000 Seum, exchange for one item and save the game in a second file and transfer the item in Arc Arena. Load the game with 9000 Seum and exchange for the other item and transfer it again. This way, you can obtain both items without losing any Seum collected. Since there are only two slots for accessories per character (excluding captured monsters, who do not have accessory slots, and Diekbeck, who cannot equip any accessory other than Power Units) equipping both accessories will necessarily take up both slots, leaving the character vulnerable to status attacks, among other things. To partially compensate for this, it is useful to fully develop these two accessories, as they will each grant 30 points of defense rather than 7 if left undeveloped, before duplicating them for your active party. A rare drop is more likely to happen by a character equipping both the Unicorn Horn and Shell destroying a monster. Physical attacks seem to give a higher drop rate than area effect magic skills. The following chart is a partial list of rare item drops. Instead of just listing the monsters to kill for the drop, the locations are also noted. It is important to remember that the same enemies appearing in different locations drop different items. Skeletons in Ruin Town drop different items than those in Yagos S.R. or those in White House Sewers. Items stolen from a monster are marked with (S) preceding the monster name. Bounty monsters are not listed with their locations (see the section on Wanted Monsters for information on that.) Notice that some areas listed, such as the White House Sewers and the Romalia Chimera Lab, are scenario dungeons accessible before the two accessories can be acquired. In order to spelunk in these dungeons, you must transfer the accessories (and perhaps a few good weapons and captured monsters) to an earlier save file so you can retry the dungeon with these accessories equipped. Item Added Effects Location (monster example) [List of Weapons] Ancient Spear(1) Paralysis Lost Forest (Red Skeleton, Trent) Andel Claim Mag. Down (S) Gualde Backus Sword(2) Off. & Def. Down The Heap (Rabid Bat) Bear Flail Cause critical hits Training Rock (Wild Hemo-ji) Change Staff Fels Highland (Grim Stalker) Claymore (Add: Def. Down Belzack Magic Defense Wpn restore HP) Corpse Edge(3) Incr Off on Level-up Holn-Lieza's House(Death Druid) Crusty Pads Golgon Damocles Blade Incr MP on Level-up Nien Forest (Dark Hemo-ji) Dark Blade On atk, take dmg Southern Tower (Blue Phantom) Dark Smasher Rng. Down Alatos S.R. (Killer Wolf) Dark Stream Dabano Belladonna Death Crimson Sleep (Poison, Clenia Vacant House Silence, Confuse, (Arch Knight) Darkness gained as Item levels up) Dragon Claw Gia Drowned Ax Gravis EarthLong Sword Earth weak Gallarno's House (Necromancer, Blood Fiend) Yagos S.R. (Vampire Bat, Skeleton) Earth Slicer F.R. B53 (Iron Golem) F.R. B67 (Sword Eater) Elven Boots Incr Movement Romalian Tunnel (Mud Battler, Earth Devil) Fate Sword On atk, take dmg (S) Grovis FlameGrizzle Fang Anan Flats, Noyam Plain, Rutar Plain (Death Wizard, Soul Knight) FlameKnife (Add: Sleep, Banza Mountain (Mud Goblin) Magic Defense) FlameSnake Whip Azenda Highland (Poison Ivy) FlameWonder Card Dalcios Gale Edge Zanag Plains (Sphinx) Gladius (Add: Sleep Ruin Town (Skeleton, Magic Defense) Soul Flame) Gold Beak Water Shrine (Dark Paladin, Iron Golem) Past Water Shrine (Golem Master) Golden Dragon Incr Def. Ability Castle Ruins (Dark Wraith, Soul Flame, Shako) Past Castle Ruins (Black Knight) GroundKnife (Add: Sleep (S) Shamus Magic Defense) GroundWonder Card Temple Square (Master Mummy) Hyper Stick Brakia S.R. (SA-200, PA-200) Ice Saber Holn-bridge (Barbarian) IceSnake Whip Holn Chimera Lab(Great Dragon) Instant(4) Incr Off on Level-Up F.R. B2 (Rabid Dog) F.R. B19, B24 (Dark Fang) F.R. B21 (Hydra) F.R. B26 (Death Devil) F.R. B28 (Black Dragon) Iron Beak Past Saryu Tribe Ruins (Dwarf) Izuna Steal MP Houfion II (SA-100) Kaiser Knuckle Incr Magic Defense Quina Hill (Death Hound, Dragon Zombie) Light Pole Romalia Battleship (Demi Monk) The last battle before the Hanger, where five soldiers transform into monsters and attack. The drop rate is low so save right before this battle and you can try it over and over. It may take a dozen tries even with the Unicorn Horn and Shell equipped. Mad Builder Darkness (S) Garop Meow Fang(5) Incr Magic Ability Mt. Amaidar, Past Mt. Amaidar (Red Phantom) Past Touvil (Kobold, Super Hemo-ji, Wolf Zombie) Misro (Dark Wizard) Meow Shoes(6) Increase Agility Pyramid Entrance (Flesh Golem) Meow Sword(7) Increase Defense (S) Tianus Metal Balls Ruvag Woods, Razen Pond (Slime Bomber) Nicarus Forest (Werejackal) Metal Pads Shvaidel Miranda Ragi Mystic Knife Incr Magic Ability Madeta Hill (Poison Cloud, Earth Giant) Neutrino Blade Incr flying mons dmg Yagos S.R. (Mummy, Vampire Bat) Paralyzer Paralysis (S) SA-200SP Pity (S) Kish Scale Legs Darkness Menan Scale Wand (4) Raiden Ruins (Berserker) Salyan Desert (King Lizard, Acid Cloud) Scimtar Ruin Town (Robber, Fighter) Scorpion Boosee Silk Belt Incr Exp Pts received Gia Temple Attic (Mage Smog) Sixteenth Night Greyshinne S.R. (Living Armor, Ghost) Strong Spear Off. Down Palencia Tower I (Medusa Lizard) Styx Steal MP Queger Tri-Shot Houfion (Jackal, Werejackal) Whirlwind Edge Incr Movement Bishamon Wind Knife (Add: Sleep Salba Desert (Robber) Magic Defense) Wing Spear Kiba [List of Accessories] Blue Jewelry (9) Blue Phantom (Southern Tower) (S) Blue Phantom (Past Mt. Amaidar) BlackRobe White House Sewers (Skeleton) Chain Guard (9) Lich (F.R. B49) (S) Lich (F.R. B49) EarthRobe Gia Temple (Demi-Zombie) Green Jewelry (9) Golden Slime (F.R. B69) (S) Golden Slime (F.R. B69) Magic Guard(8) Incr Magic Defense Romalia Chimera Lab(Ghoulgoyle) Melody Cap(6) Increase Agility Romalia Chimera Lab(Ghoulgoyle) Moon Stone Random positive stat Zariban S.R. (Mummy Lord, Mutant Fly) Red Jewelry (9) Red Phantom (Oil Rig, Past Mt. Amaidar) (S) Red Phantom (Oil Rig, Past Mt. Amaidar) Senior's Wish Increase Defense Zanack Slayer Heavy Suit(4,9)(Add: Dodge, Frost Giant (Northern Tower, Magic Ability F.R. B59) Magic Defense) (S) Frost Giant (Northern Tower, F.R. B58) (S) Golgon 1. This is not the same Ancient Spear with the Poison attribute, which can be found in a treasure chest. 2. The Backus Sword comes already personalized by Tosh, therefore cannot be transferred between players. 3. Although both the Corpse Edge and the Instant are described to increase offense on level-up, the Corpse Edge is twice as effective. Tosh with neither equipped gains 9 points in 15 levels. With the Instant equipped, he gains 12 points in 15 levels. With the Corpse Edge equipped, he gains 15 points in 15 levels. Fractional bonuses do apply here. 4. The Instant can be found in the Oil Rig, and you can eventually purchase the Scale Wand and the Slayer Heavy Suit. But since the Instant has a high development potential and offense bonus, the Scale Wand is useful to combine, and the Slayer Heavy Suit can be modified to increase Dodge or Magic Defense, it is worth the efforts to get them as soon as possible. 5. Some items such as Meow Fang, Meow Sword, MagicIllusion Robe provide secondary bonuses that increase as the item levels up. The tricky part is that the bonus increment could be a range of fractions so it is important to take the effort to fully develop these weapons. My personal record for a fully developed Meow Fang is Atk+38, Mag+46. Any monster equipped with this weapon will have a killer breath attack, often reaching three to four times the normal power. 6. Meow Shoes increase Agi by 20. Melody Cap increases Agi by 10. Although equipping a Meow Shoes and two Melody Caps theoretically increases the Agi of a character by 40, the maximum agility for any character (base Agi + bonus Agi) is 51 as dictated by the game. 7. My personal record for Meow Sword is Atk+27, Def+32. This is not a very useful weapon. If you have a captured monster capable of using a sword and in dire need of extra Defense, however, feel free to use it. I wouldn't recommend using a physically inclined monster with weak Defense parameters at all, though. If you want to protect a monster, either use L.1 Invincible or equip a powerful weapon and kill any nearby enemies before they become trouble. 8. This Magic Guard is a type of shoulder protector, not the sword with the same name found in a treasure chest. 9. Although most of the items dropped are considered floor items, which are the rare drops of a unique item common to all enemies appearing in the same map floor. Some items, such as Red Jewelry, Slayer Heavy Suit, and various medicine, may be monster specific as they are dropped by, and often stolen from, the same monster types throughout the game. They sometimes take priority over the floor item of the area (i.e. Red Phantoms in Past Mt. Amaidar drop both the Red Jewelry and the Meow Fang, with a much higher rate for the former one), and that no other monster in the same floor drop these items (i.e. Red Jewelry is dropped by only Red Phantoms and Blue Jewelry is dropped by only Blue Phantoms, even though both types appear in Past Mt. Amaidar.) Medicine that counteracts a particular status ailment is usually dropped by an enemy that can inflict such a status. (i.e. Killer Wolf in Alatos S.R. can drop Rue's Medicine.) IV. Character Development, Deployment, and Optimal Equipment 1. Development The development of characters does not simply mean the process of level-up. Rather, the development of skills is the most important aspect of character development. The skills of each character also gains experience by using and receiving magic skills. Although the magic experience can be gained from using Full Power Fruits, Rubies, or the Yellow Ribbon, the increase is very small and by the time all skills of a character is unlocked, the character will be a hundred levels above the rest. A discrepancy in levels among characters in an active team places a serious threat on the weaker characters. Anyone who has converted the ATL I data with the original characters maxed out at level 60 will learn it the hard way. During the scene where your characters infiltrate the Romalia Chimera Lab, the prospect of having a level 60 Gogen and a level 40 Lieza with captured monsters of even lower levels facing off a level 60 Fake Tosh, or having to fight off six copies of Fake Tosh with weak characters is a very dangerous situation. (There are no save points in that facility! Once you lose a character or two the fight is pretty much over.) To develop the skills of a character fully without having to level up, arrange a party of five and enter the Yagos S.R. (any place in game with undead enemies is OK. But the low levels of threat of enemy attacks, proximity to a Skyport and the nearby village with free recovery spot make it the best place to do. Notice that I said in game. Battles waged in the Arc Arena do not allow accumulation of magic experience.) At the first battle, arrange the formation of your five party members in a cross formation and simply cast support magic, such as Ground Shield or Cure, over all five characters over and over. The undead enemies may attack and be countered. But since they cannot attack under the HP1 status, the battle does not end unless you take the initiative to attack. It may also be wise to keep Light aligned characters or characters equipping weapons with Light alignment away from the undead (preferably at the center of the cross formation) as their physical attacks bypass the HP1 condition. With the exception of Odon, all characters have eight innate skills and six addable ones. Some of the later innate skills, such as Iga's Cure spell or Elc's Invincible skill, are extremely important to learn. As for monsters, the skill set a monster acquires depends on its class at the time of acquiring a skill after collecting enough magic experience. Training the same monster in different classes will get you different sets of skills (until all skill slots are filled.) 2. Deployment All characters are not equal. This is especially important to remember in dungeons where a party of up to five characters is chosen at the entrance. If a character in the active party is not suited to handle the enemies and/or the topography of the battlefields in the dungeon, he will become a liability during battle. The game manual, and the strategy guide for that matter, does not describe the parameters clearly, so I will attempt to remedy this. Offense: This is the parameter that determines the basic physical attack power (base+bonus) as well as any physical skills, such as Extract. Actual damage is affected by target Defense, elemental associations, critical hit, and blocking by the target. Defense: This is the parameter that determines the reduction of physical damage (either from direct attacks or physical skills) received (base+bonus.) Magic Ability: This parameter determines not only the basic magic attack power, but also the basic magic defense. The most striking difference between the two traits is that the magic attack power is determined by base+bonus, but magic defense is determined by the base value only. Equipping weapons and accessories with the description of "Increase Magic Defense", however, can reduce magic damage received. The percentage of reduction is additive with a maximum of 62.5% reduction (i.e. cutting the damage received to just over one-third.) Take Diekbeck for an example, equipping Power Units with higher numbers will increase its magic attack power. But there is nothing you can do to augment its abysmal magic defense (except by casting Invincible or Magic Shield.) Notice that magic attacks also include the various breath attacks. Agility: This parameter also determines two different traits. Within a given battle turn, the order of commands for both allies and enemies is determined by base+bonus (maximum 51) for every participant in that battle. However, the response of a character (accuracy and dodging abilities) is determined by the base value only. Equipment with the description of "Increase Dodge Ability" can be equipped to augment this trait. Again using Diekbeck as an example, as the story progresses it will be increasingly difficult for Diekbeck to actually land a successful physical attack on its target. This will become painfully obvious in a certain sequence where Diekbeck becomes the only character available in battle. Since almost every story character is unique (except for Fujin / Raijin, and captured monsters) consider grouping characters into several categories for easier decisions: a. Healers: Arc, Poco, Iga (after learning Cure,) Lieza, Shante, Diekbeck (after acquiring Power Unit 19,) Kelack. b. Direct Physical Attackers: Tosh, Choko (regular form.) c. Indirect Physical Attackers: Arc, Iga, Elc, Shu, Gruga. d. Offensive Mages: Gogen, Sania, Fujin, Raijin, Choko (Akura form.) e. Resistant to magic: Elc (after learning L.2 or L.3 Invincible,) Fujin, Raijin, Choko (Akura form.) f. Weak against magic: Tosh, Shu, Gruga, Diekbeck. g. Immobilizing: Tosh (paralysis vs. 1,) Gogen (sleep vs. area,) Lieza (added skill,) Sania (added skill,) Fujin (added skill,) Raijin (added skill.) h. Specialized skills: Arc (recovers both HP and conditions,) Gogen (teleportation,) Lieza (capture monsters,) Shu (stealing,) Sania (sacrifice her turn to allow another party member to take an extra turn,) Diekbeck (can change abilities between battles,) Hemo-ji (full screen attack. The Chongara Bomb ability is so ludicrous that it is the only outlawed skill in the Clenia and Misro Arena matches,) Odon (change form, including assumption of a flying movement type,) captured monsters (various reasons- flying movement, HP1 protection, peculiar skill combinations, to name a few.) The trick to clearing dungeons without having to expend extra efforts to level-up is to assign appropriate characters for the job at hand. For example, during the assault on Graunoln, remember to assign healers and physical attackers in both parties. In dungeons with powerful mages (i.e. Warlocks in Alatos S.R. and Arch Mages in Romalia Inner City,) include characters resistant to magic and avoid those who are weak against it. In dungeons littered with obstacles or gaping holes, remember to assign flying characters. 3. Optimal Equipment The key to winning wave after wave of enemy onslaught is to minimize enemy character's moves and maximize that of your own. Therefore the choice of weapons should favor heavily on weapons allow for indirect attacks which prevents enemy counterattacks along with the added effects for causing immobilization to further reduce the number of their regular turns. In ATL II, the bosses are not immune to immobilizing status such as paralysis. Taking advantage of these effects will make for less hassle since most bosses have devastating attacks. Counterattacking is only possible if the attacker is directly adjacent to the target. For example, if both the attacker and the target are equipping spears, counterattack is possible if the attack is made on a square adjacent to that occupied by the target, but not if the attacker is one square away from that the target is on even though the attacker is still within range of the target's weapon strike. Of course, not every character can use indirect weapons. For these characters, it would be best that even though they must equip direct attack weapons, the immobilizing effect can sometimes cancel the enemy's counterattack. Indirect Weapons: The weapon types that allow indirect physical attacks are listed below. O denotes the position of the attacker; X denotes squares being targeted when the attacker aims towards the top of the screen. Type 1: X Attacks enemies from one square away horizontally or X vertically without risking a counterattack. O Spear, Short Sword, Gun2, Diek's Gun, Card Type 2: XXX Attacks enemies from a corner. Can attack two O enemies at once if they are separated from each other by one square without risking a counterattack. Highly effective against enemies attacking an ally from opposite sides. Stick Type 3: XXX Attacks enemies from even further away. Highly X effective against enemies lined up in a single file O or enemies surrounding an ally on three sides. Gun Immobilizing Weapons: Name Immobilizing Effect Type Power Paralyzer Paralyze Gun Lv15, Atk38 Ancient Spear Paralyze Spear Lv15, Atk41 Shadow Stitch Paralyze Short Sword (appears too late to be useful) Death Crimson Sleep (+ Confuse) Gun Lv15, Atk38 (Elemental) Knife Sleep Short Sword For ShineKnife, Lv15, Atk44 Fabulous Sword Sleep (+ Confuse) Sword Lv15, Atk71 Stone Boots Stone Kick (no potential for development) The Diek's Gun and Stick type weapons do not have a variety that feature immobilization properties. Note that although the Power Units are accessories equipped only by Diekbeck, these items are not personalized so transfer between two players in Arc Arena is possible. Bonus Items The weapon equipped by a character features bonus to its Atk parameter while a typical accessory features bonus to its Def parameter. The other parameters, however, are much more difficult to boost. Although the list of highly effective boosters is very short, it will take a lot of patience to locate some of the more elusive ones. The Power Units of Diekbeck are not included in the list. Agility boosters (10 or greater, additive, maximum value is 51 for base + bonus) Meow Boots Agi+20 Melody Hat Agi+10 Magic Ability boosters (10 or greater, additive) Meow Fang Mag+20 to +46 Fabulous Ring Mag+10 Movement Range boosters (additive, maximum stat increase is +2) Red Shoes Range+2 (personalized by Choko) Violet Necklace Range+2 Bravery Wings Range+1 (personalized by Elc) Elven Boots Range+1 Elven Chain Range+1 Whirlwind Edge Range+1 Status Protectors (prevents all status ailments except for Instant Death, which is preventable only by skills such as Invincible and Magic Shield. A couple fully developed Cure-All+9 is all you need.) Cure-All Book of Cravis Memory Necklace (personalized by Shante) Parameter Enhancing Equipment There are a number of special equipments in the game that offers additional parameter growth when the bearer levels up. These effects are generally redundant since it would be far quicker to simply duplicate items such as Power Nut or Reco's Grass, and use the copies on your characters, should you fancy them to be walking gods. (Just be warned that the game would be of little challenge if you choose to do so.) But for some people, having the highest stats at the lowest level possible is something to be proud of. The items with their enhancing effects are listed here (some of them requires a trip to the Smith Shop to add the item effect.) Hardly the Optimal Equipment for battle, their effects are only beneficial when the equipped character levels up. Necklace HP + 3 per level gained per item equipped Strengthen Fruit HP + 1 per level gained per item equipped Damocles Blade MP + 1 per level gained Unfire MP + 1 per level gained Corpse Edge Off + 0.4 per level gained Instant Off + 0.2 per level gained V. Wanted Monsters Locations and Treasures In ATL II, wanted posters are found in Hunter Guilds across the world. Aside from duplicating items of high resale values and sell the copies, completing bounties is the quickest way to amass a sizable wealth. However, most of the posters do not contain adequate information on the whereabouts of the monsters and absolutely no information on the items these monsters cough up. This section lists all items stolen from or dropped by the wanted monsters, many of which unique treasures, as well as the location of appearance. They are listed in alphabetical order with respect of the town with its wanted poster. Monster Stolen Drop Location (Ajarl) Dalcios Recover Fruit FlameWonder Card Razen Pond Gorgas Cheer Nettle (none) Nicarus Forest Kish Pity (none) Nien Forest third battle Grovis Fate Sword (none) Oil Rig blocked room near the top entrance. It is unblocked during the evacuation sequence (Elzark) Maios Bitter Leaf (none) Zariban S.R. third level Tasman Recover Fruit (none) Ishima Rocks Shvaidel Antidote Nut Metal Pads Salyan Desert Zanack Cheer Nettle Senior's Wish Raiden Ruins. [Stop the Desert Thieves II] (Gooz) Garop Mad Builder Earth Charm Banza Mtns. first side area Gigas Recover Fruit (none) Banza Mtns. fourth area in the main section Dabano Magic Apple Dark Stream Banza Mtns. first area in the main section Dreyper Recover Fruit (none) Banza Mtns. first area beyond the room to clear the tracks (Houfion) Gravis Bomb Drowned Ax The Heap. After the Romalia Chimera Lab is destroyed SA-200SP Paralyzer Rage Weaken Dust Houfion Resistance. After the soldiers followed Danny. Jackal Herb Tri-Shot Houfion. [Slay the Nocturnal Monsters] Dorarosh Tem's Grass Nuru-nuru Clenia Isle Vacant House. After acquiring the Silver Noah (Indigos) Aju Power Jelly (none) Sewer Shamus GroundKnife (none) Sewer. After defeating the fake Gallarno. Slasher (Shu unavailable) (none) Gallarno's House Main Auditorium Hoysler Nuru-nuru Nuru-nuru Salba Desert third area. After discovering White House Docsun (1) Jump Nettle (jewelry)(2) Indigos [Indigos Ruby Paralysis Apple Jewelry Robbery] Arc (can't fight him) (can't fight him) (can't fight him) (Misro) Gigmunt Full Power Fruit (none) Misro Arena. Talk to the person in front of the left statue ten times. Tosh Bomb (none) The Heap. During Shu and Tosh's duel. Negdus (none) (none) Misro Arena. [Monster in the Arena] The real Negdus is not in the first set. It has a black EXP bar rather than a red one. Queger Herb Styx F.R. first level (Morea) Dolgon Bronze Guard (none) Madeta Hill Golgon Slayer Heavy Suit Crusty Pads Madeta Hill Belladonna Cheer Nettle Dark Stream Amigue S.R. second level Darry Recover Fruit Nettle Amigue S.R. fourth level (Muhad) Darius Bitter Leaf (none) Kanara Desert Gualde Andel Claim (none) Tukae Cave Guadiras Cure-All Mint Balbalard S.R. second level (Palencia) Ragi Spirit Seed Miranda Raus Plain Kiba Herb Wing Spear Quina Hill. After acquiring the Silver Noah Shako (none) Golden Dragon or Castle Ruins. Green Mem Grass After acquiring the Silver Noah Diros (Shu unavailable) (none) Castle Ruins Basement Lab Gia Cure-All Dragon Claw Raus Plain (Paysus) Kido Herb (none) Anan Flats Bishamon Cheer Nettle Whirlwind Edge Rutar Plain Flame Brothers Magic Apple Magic Apple or Mt. Amaidar Strengthen Fruit [Monsters in Amaidar] Hell Spawn Magic Apple (Jewelry)(2) Anan Flats. [Play Cupid] (Prodias) Golza Jump Nettle (none) Ruin Town Abandoned House Leland Cheer Nettle (none) Ruin Town streets. After returning from Yagos Isle Boosee Power Jelly Scorpion Wastelands. After defeating fake Gallarno Balzack Spirit Seed Claymore Lost Forest. After discovering White House, go back and choose "Who are you?" Menan Tem's Grass Scale Legs Yagos Isle S.R. second level. After defeating the fake Gallarno Tianus Meow Sword (sword)(2) Gallarno's House/ Vacant House first door on the right wing (Ramul) Jad (Shu unavailable) Cheer Nettle Holn. After Gogen joins before reaching the village Balguli Recover Fruit (none) Fels Highland Dillinger Herb (none) Calmio Hill Gaucrow Neba-neba Speed Bottle Azenda Highland (1) Items stolen and won from Docsun depends on whether he steals the jewel before you steal from him. If you let him take the jewel from its display stand first, you can steal a Ruby from Docsun. It's one of the first level-up items you can get in the game. (2) The jewelry and the sword are nameless when received. Using the nameless jewel on a character add 0 levels and resets all experience gained towards the next level. The nameless sword may not even stay in your inventory. These are most likely dummy items not removed from the game. VI. Secrets 1. Combine Shop Credits This is a glitch in Arc Arena that gives credit for items yet to be acquired. Load a file for Player 2 and go to the Smith Shop to Combine. Browse through the combine list and you will discover that certain ingredients are highlighted even if you do not have one in your inventory, thus allowing you to combine as long as the other ingredients are in your inventory. 2. Bypassing HP 1 Protection The undead monsters in the game are protected by the HP 1 condition. This condition allows the monster to survive a normally fatal attack with 1 HP left. To bypass this condition, either a) attack physically using a Light aligned character equipped with any weapon (i.e. Gruga or Kelack,) b) attack physically using a character equipped with a Light aligned weapon (i.e. Fabulous Sword, ShineKnife, etc.,) or c) attack using a skill with Light attribute (i.e. Divine Judgment or Holy Breath, etc.) 3. Immobilizing Bosses The bosses in ATL II, even major ones such as Andel, are not immune to status ailments like paralysis. Therefore it is to your advantage to equip immobilizing weapons and use immobilizing skills to reduce the number of their turns. Many of the latter bosses have dangerous skills such as L.3 Death, which can be completely protected only by skills like Invincible or Magic Shield. Using such protective skills, however, pose a significant risk since the affected character cannot be healed by magic. Reducing the bosses' turns give them less opportunity to attack with such skills. As for stealing, I had no luck with any of them so don't waste your time and prolong the battle for that purpose. 4. Secret Shops There are a number of secret shops in ATL II that requires certain conditions to be met before the shop opens. Prodias: The shop in the second floor in the Smith Shop opens once the job "Exterminate the Weapons Thief" is completed. Simply go through the back door of the smith shop and go up the stairs. Turn left at the top of the steel ladder to enter. Palencia: The park shop opens only at one point in the entire game. After Elc awakens in the Sabatico Shrine, a certain sequence will have him traveling with Poco to the basement lab in the Castle Ruins. Once Poco gives you the Leaf Bead, use it to return to Sabatico Shrine. Talk to Kukuru and choose to return to Palencia and she will give you another Leaf Bead. Once you return to Palencia, do not exit town and do not enter any buildings. Head directly to the park shop and you will find it open. So you have missed that opportunity already... If you really want another Illusion Robe, complete the job "Find the Ancient Treasure II" and return to the old man in the bar who gave you the job. He will offer you Illusion Robe+0 in exchange for 1000 Goz. Silver Noah: After crashing into the Romalia Sky Castle, you can return to the Silver Noah anytime to recover without having enemies cleared to re-spawn (except for certain trap rooms.) The second floor of the Silver Noah offers the Combine Shop, both Smith Shops, Mother Claire (assuming you found her in the game,) and Diekbeck's experience dividing machine in addition to the Shop selling new items. 5. Diekbeck's Test The special job "Return the Sea Dragon's Egg" is offered in Ajarl only after the guild member notifies you in the Indigos guild backroom. To enter this room, you must retrieve the God Hunter Crest from the Prodias guild backroom once you have satisfied the merit requirement. Since the crest is neither usable nor can be equipped, only retrieve the crest after defeating Andel and before you enter Romalia Sky Castle, during the window of opportunity for the job. Once you take the job, you may safely discard the crest, as it no longer serves any purpose. Go to Yagos Isle to have the good doctor repair the submarine you got from the Oil Rig. When he tells you to return later, simply exits to the world map and reenters Yagos Isle. You may then board the submarine and search the ocean. During the search keep diving and if enemy subs approaches, prepare for battle and choose to evade their attacks. Keep diving until the shrine is located while disregarding the pressure alarm and choose to enter the Shrine. Enemies in the Shrine will demand that you hand over the egg. Listen to their reason and refuse each time they ask. Be aware that the high level slimes can use status altering breath attacks and the fearsome Death skill. But overall these are not difficult battles. The real challenge, however, starts once you complete the job. The first requirement is to obtain Power Units 00-18 (you don't have to keep all of them, but they must be removed from the Sealed Ruins.) Be prepared to reserve a dozen inventory spaces for Magic Apples (and perhaps another few for Strengthen Fruits.) Return to East Shrine via the submarine and include Diekbeck in your party. Inspect the door on the left and choose to accept the test as Diekbeck (it must appear as your map model. Cycle through your characters until it appears.) In the first few battles, keep Diekbeck in the back to conserve HP and MP and defeat the enemies with your other party members because there are three battles Diekbeck must complete on its own. Once you get to those three battles, there are basically two strategies to choose. If you decide to rely on L.1 Invincible (make sure you have the correct Power Unit equipped,) you will discover that it is very difficult for Diekbeck to actually land a blow. So you may end up wasting a lot of turns keeping up the Invincible skill. If you decide to use Diekbeck as an offensive mage, the enemies will be quickly dispatched but you may find yourself out of MP halfway through the test. Either way, put the Magic Apples to use when you need an MP boost and recover with Strengthen Fruits if your HP runs low. After you reach the Guardian's Force, prepare for the battle against Judgment, which is an easy battle as long as you don't position your characters in a straight line. This battle must include both Arc and Elc, but Diekbeck cannot participate. Once Judgment is defeated, Diekbeck will receive Power Unit 19, which invokes recovery spells and the highest bonus of any Power Unit. 6. Choko's Transformation Once you complete all of Choko's side quests (described in detail in Billy Lee's FAQs) and defeat Akura in the lowest level of the Forbidden Ruins, Choko can access the Stimulant skill and transforms into Akura form. There are a few interesting differences between the two forms. Aside from the obvious skill set difference (The Akura form cannot use any of Choko's normal skills and must rely on Vanish and the skills added from Mother Claire,) the less obvious differences include that the equipment Choko can equip in the two forms are different (i.e. Frey's Headdress can not be equipped in Akura form, but if you have it equipped before the transformation, it will still be equipped although the name of the item will gray out. Personalizing an item for Choko, however, will allow either form to equip.) Parameter wise, the Akura form features an increase in Magic Ability in exchange for reduced Offense and Defense, which will prove useful against enemies with high magic power. Also, despite the appearance, Choko's Akura form is not a flying character, and therefore cannot fly over open spaces or land on obstacles. It is interesting to know that all flying characters in the game have a Jump value of zero (even for Odon after using Transfer.) 7. Leaf Bead Crash This is another Arc Arena glitch, only not as useful as the previous one (at least I haven't found a use for it.) After acquiring the Silver Noah, return to Seirya and obtain the Leaf Bead from Kukuru to go to Palencia. Make a save file in the Inn and load this file in the Arc Arena. If you have developed the smith shop to unlock "Add Item Effect" you can select the Leaf Bead. The effect to add is "Warp to Touvil." Adding this effect will allow you to use the Leaf Bead from the menu in Arc Arena. However, the game will crash, presumably because there is no data of Touvil in Arc Arena. 8. Gogen's Leap As a human character, Gogen is one of the more versatile mages in the game as he can wield spells from the four elements as well as put enemies to sleep. Unfortunately, there's a handicap associated with him-His Jump level will not improve no matter how many levels he gain. To remedy this, make sure to duplicate Romancing Stone 1 and equip it on Gogen before you combine it with the other fragments. He is now at Jump level 2. Combining this increase in jump ability and his L.3 Teleport skill will allow him to cover an incredible distance during each turn, even on battlefields littered with obstacles. If you didn't convert the data from ATL I, or if you missed it, its too bad. Although equipping the Temporary Shoes sets his Jump level to 1, it is too shabby a weapon to prove its worth. 9. Team Battle Character Control Normally in Arc Arena, the 3-Team Battles and the 5-Team Battles are exclusively AI controlled. Once you unlock the human and summon monster characters but clearing all of the 3-Team Battles, you can regain control of the human and summon characters. If the team currently fighting, in either 3-Team or 5-Team Battle, includes one or more of these characters, simply wait until the AI has started to move the character (movement range appears on the map) but BEFORE an action has be chosen (target range appears on the map) by pressing start and select at the same time. If successful, a colored square will appear around the character and you have regained control of this character for the rest of the battle. Repeat this for each human/summon monster characters in your team. Captured monsters, however, cannot be controlled in this fashion. 10. Secret Floors in Palencia Tower During the second visit to Palencia Tower, in order to access the elevator to the top of the tower, a switch in floor 38 must be activated. However, if you continue turning on and off the switch, you will gain access to floor 77 (the ninth time you press the switch) and floor 44 (the 19th time you press the switch). There will be a message notifying activation of express elevator to the designated floor in each case. Floors 44 and 77 have no side rooms besides the main hall. Floor 44 features a single battle against eight monsters, but floor 77 holds six treasure chests including a few rare items such as the Book of Marin (personalized by Shu, improves success rate of stealing) and the Parade Coat (clothes for all characters except captured monsters, not very strong but can be duplicated and sold for a large sum). Be sure to access these floors before you reach floor 100 since the Palencia Tower will be inaccessible once the story progresses. 11. Odds and Ends There are yet still many secrets in the game undiscovered. Do the three colored jewelry (Red, Blue, and Green) serve any purpose? Does it make a difference if you've completed all jobs and collected every bounty? Many more secrets await discovery! Acknowledgements Thanks to Orlandu17 for the information about the floor items and the location of the battle with the Light Pole as a dropped floor item. Thanks to Ed Perkowski for the information on regaining control of human and summon monster characters in the Arc Arena Team Battles. Thanks to Daniel Dainwood for the information on stealing a Ruby from Docsun once he takes the jewel in the display stand. Arc the Lad Collection is developed by G-Craft and released by SCE Inc. in Japan. The series is localized and compiled by Working Designs. All work done on this FAQ is by the author, except for sources referenced in the FAQ to reduce redundancy.