Final Fantasy VII Command Only Challenge Copyright Acid Angel 13 2005 ver 1.50 CONTENTS****************************************************************** i INTRODUCTION ii THE RULES iii FAQ's iv HELPFUL TIPS v SETUPS/SUGGESTIONS vi ENEMY SKILLS vii WALKTHROUGH viii SIDEQUESTS ix THANKS x LEGAL STUFF xi VERSION HISTORY/AUTHORIZED SITES ************************************ i ******************************** INTRODUCTION I love this game... There is no way around it. After, what, almost ten years?, I can STILL play it every two months and not tire of it. I tell people if someone were to break into my home, steal EVERYTHING I own, minus one of my Playstation decks, my TV, and one of my copies of the game, I'd probably not notice. And, once I did notice, I simply would not care... Final Fantasy VII... Some people visit their families, hang out with friends. Cloud, Tifa, Aeris... They are my family. Barret, Red XII, Cid... They are my friends. I know, it's pathetic and sad; But, if it gets the point across, if it offers any insight on the impact this game has had, still has, always will have on my poor excuse for a life, then it works. Alas, a game that's been around so long, a game that has so many fans, has been explored, beaten, re-explored, and exploited to a point that a guy like myself can't contribute anything in its tribute. Until now. What you read now is my own attempt to contribute something to the Final Fantasy VII legacy. As with all of my guides (as of now, only one other exists; However, this will remain my policy ad infinitum), this guide was composed WHILE playing, so the information presented should be 100% accurate. Specifically, this guide was written using the notoriously inaccurate Bradygames Official Guide as sort of a roadmap, from which I laid out the basic strategies and events BEFORE I actually reached them during gameplay. These basics were then checked and revised as I reached the set points, therefore producing the unique and guide- specific information presented here. There are guides, FAQs, lists, challenges upon challenges for FFVII. In the case of the latter, this is simply another. Now, this game in its own right is not terribly difficult, so the term 'challenge' actually translates to "a reason to play this masterpiece again". For those of you who need a reason... !!WARNING!! THIS GUIDE ASSUMES YOU HAVE PREVIOUSLY COMPLETED THE GAME THERE WILL BE SPOILERS, AND THEY WILL APPEAR WITHOUT WARNING ************************************ ii ******************************** THE RULES i: Only Command (yellow) materia may be used. Prior to obtaining Command materias, only the default action commands 'Attack' and 'Item' can be used. Command materias include: -Steal/Mug -Sense -Enemy Skill -Throw -Manipulate -Deathblow -Morph -2x/4x Cut -Slash All/Flash -W Item -The materias W-Summon and W-Magic are Command type as well, but serve no purpose in this challenge. -The Mime materia cannot be obtained without a chocobo, and Chocobo Lure, an Independent (purple) materia, cannot be used. **NOTE**: There is ONE exception to this rule (and it isn't what you think), which may ONLY be used under extremely specific conditions for a very limited time. This will be laid out in detail later. ii: You may equip W-Summon/W-Magic if you choose, but why? iii: At the beginning of the game, Cloud has two magic materia equipped. The magic command MAY NOT be used, and these materia must be removed and trashed as soon as the option is available. Subsequent characters entering the party with materia must have said materia (minus Command type) removed and trashed. iv: Non-Command type materia CAN NOT be equipped and sold later for a profit. No Non-Command type materia is allowed in the materia bag at any time. Found materia must be discarded at the time of pickup. v: Just because you have W-Item, it doesn't mean you can use the W-Item cheat to max out potions and such in your inventory. Here's a hint: If it says "cheat" in the name, IT IS CHEATING!!! In the case a preparing to take on the Weapons, and during the Ruby Weapon fight, however, use of this cheat is acceptable... *********************************** iii ******************************** FAQS (that I made up) Q: Can this be done? A: Sure. In fact, probably with a relatively small degree of difficulty. The level of the challenge is based more on the level of the characters, so how hard it is is, ultimately, up to the player (that would be you.) Q: Is this challenge more difficult than (insert challenge title here)? A: As previously stated, the difficulty of this (or any other FF7 challenge, for that matter) resides with the player. In terms of comparasin, this challenge WILL get progressively easier as the game proceeds, if you choose to take advantage of all the game provides. In the beginning, you will be limited to Attack and Item, the default commands, and will be, essentially, playing a 'No Materia' game. Once you start building an arsenal of Enemy Skills (the only magic you will be allowed), the difficulty will drop signifigantly. By the time you acquire 2x(4x) Cut and Slash All, it's likely you won't notice much difference from a normal game. ************************************ iv ******************************** HELPFUL TIPS (or, Some Stuff You May Have Forgotten) i: Pick up AT LEAST three of the four Enemy Skill materias. Enemy Skill is the ONLY magic you will be allowed, and certain Skills, such as Big Guard and White Wind will be nearly essential for completing the game. ii: Remember, without Restore, Potions are your only way of curing until Enemy Skill comes along, and Phoenix Downs are like gold, since there is no E. Skill equivalent of Life. (CORRECTION: There is, in fact, an Enemy Skill version of Life- Life 2, specifically. Angel Whisper retores a KO'd party member to full HP, as well as restoring all HP to a non-KO'd member, and erases all status effects. However, as this skill becomes available so late in the game, the above statement remains, effectively, true.) Thanks to everybody who reminded me of this. iii: When learning a new Enemy Skill, remember that any materia having that particular skill on it will negate the learning effect on any other E. Sill on the same character. Confused? If Cloud is wearing 3 Enemy Skills, one of which has Aqualung, and he tries to learn Aqualung, the skill WILL NOT be picked up because Cloud already has it. In other words, spread out your Enemy Skills (pay attention to the guide; I will direct you on how to place materias when it comes time to get Skills in tricky situations.) iv: Save often. That's your only warning. *********************************** v ******************************** SETUPS/SUGGESTIONS This is sort of an extension of the Helpful Hints section. Basically, I will offer advice on how to use and who to equip with certain materias in order to help you advance. Mind you, these are simply MY personal preferences, and are in no way absolutely neccesary to complete this challenge. i. Keep an Enemy Skill on EVERY character in the main party (once you have enough, of course) ii. On that note, learn Enemy Skills AS SOON as possible, and keep all of your materias updated (i.e. all having the same magics available) iii. Steal vs Mug: Personally, I prefer Steal. It's a control thing; Basically, I prefer to be able to make steal attempts without causing damage, allowing me to try to steal until I get an item without fear of killing the enemy first. However, Mug is a great 'alternative' maens of dealing damage, as it always hit, unlike Deathblow. iv. 2x/4x Cut vs Slash All/Flash: Again, personal preference. I like 2x/4x Cut, because, though targeting is random in normal battles, in boss fights, it deals 4 hits to a single target. Since most or all bosses are immune to Instant Death attacks, the advantage over Flash is obvious. Also notew that Flash doesn't cause damage to bosses; Only Slash-All will. My advice: Have 2x/4x on your hardest hitting party member, Slash-All on another. v. Deathblow: The nature of Deathblow is random, however, unlike 2x/4x Cut and Slash All/Flash, it does not replace the 'Attack' command, thus making D.Blow an alternative to Limits. Almost essential if you plan on using Vincent for extended periods. vi. Keep the main party outfitted with the best weapons and armor. Because of the limited amout of materia allowed, number of slots should not be a concern. vii. Remember you are not playing a standard game; In fact, for the first portion of the game, you will be playing a No Materia game. This requires your levels to be slightly higher than the normal recommended amount until you have enough Enemy Skills to compensate. I will suggest gaining levels at certain points in the walkthrough, up to a recommended point, but they are only suggenstions. viii. Without Independent materia, you cannot use Chocobo Lure. Without that, you cannot catch a chocobo. Without the bird, you cannot get the Mime materia, and, without Mime, you CANNOT get a Master Command. The only exception is to earn one by defeating Emerald Weapon, or get a chocobo by killing Ruby Weapon. *********************************** vi ******************************* ENEMY SKILLS In this section, I will list the 24 Enemy Skills in the order they appear in the in-game menu. Below the list is a chart listing how to get each skill, and a rank describing its usefulness. -THE SKILLS Frog Song L4 Suicide Magic Hammer White Wind Big Guard Angel Whisper Dragon Force Death Force Flame Thrower Laser Matra Magic Bad Breath Beta Aqualung Trine Magic Breath ???? Goblin Punch Chocobuckle L5 Death Death Sentence Roulette Shadow Flare Pandora's Box The below chart is divided as follows: Name- Name of Enemy Skill, obviously Enemy- Enemy that uses it; Bosses are marked with (B) Location- Where to find the enemy Manip.- Y or N; Whether or not the enemy must be Manipulated; If there is a ?, I honestly don't know; If there is a -, the enemy is a Boss and cannot be Manipulated, or a special method must be used (see the * notes below) Rank- 0-5; How useful the skill is: 0- Absolutely USELESS 1- You won't miss it if you don't get it 2- You might use it once in a while 3- Fairly useful in certain situations 4- Pretty helpful to have 5- You can't live without it NOTE: Ranking is based on MY opinion. Don't send me hate mail because you hate Beta or use Dragon Force religiously. NAME ENEMY LOCATION MANIP. RANK Frog Song Touch Me Cosmo Forest N 3 Toxic Frog Temple of Ancients N L4 Suicide Mu Chocobo Farm area N 0 Trick Play Icicle Area N Magic Hammer Razor Weed Wutai ? 5 White Wind Wind Wing Whirlwind Maze Y 5 Zemzelett Condor Mt. Y Big Guard Beach Plug Costa Del Sol beach Y 5 Wolfmeister(B) Coal Train ? Angel Whisper Pollensalta Northern Crater Y 2 Dragon Force Blue Dragon Gaea's Cliff ? 1 Dark Dragon Northern Crater Y Death Force Adamantaimai Wutai beaches Y 1 Flame Thrower Ark Dragon Mythril Mine N 3 Dragon Mt. Nibel N Laser Bullmotor Desert Prison N 3 Dark Dragon Northern Crater N Death Claw Desert Prison N Matra Magic Bullmotor Desert Prison N 1 Custom Sweeper Midgar area N Death Machine Junon N Bad Breath Marlboro Gaea's Cliff N 4 Beta Midgar Zolom Midgar Swamp N 5 Aqualung Jenova LIFE(B) City of the Ancients - 4 Harpy Gold Saucer desert N Serpent Downed Gelinka N Trine Materia Keeper(B) Mt. Nibel - 2 Godo(B) Wutai Pagoda - Stilva Gaea's Cliff N Magic Breath Stilva Gaea's Cliff N 2 ???? Jersey Shinra Mansion N 0 Behemoth Midgar underground N Goblin Punch Goblin Goblin Island N 1 Chocobuckle Chocobo (Lv 4) Chocobo tracks -* N/A L5 Death Parasite Nothern Crater N 0 Death Sentence Bound Fat Bone Village N 1 Gi Spector Cave of the Gi N Sneaky Step Cave of the Gi N Roulette Death Dealer Northern Crater N 0 Shadow Flare Ultimate Weapon(B) above Cosmo Canyon - 4 Dragon Zombie Northern Crater N Safer Sephiroth(B) Northern Crater - Pandora's Box Dragon Zombie Northern Crater ? 4 *In order to get Chocobuckle, you must first encounter a Chocobo with a Level multiple of 4, give it Mimmet Greens, then hit it with L4 Suicide (impossible in this challenge) ?'s Magic Hammer- I'm not sure if you HAVE to Manipulate for this skill Big Guard (Wolfmeister)- Can Wolfmeister be Manipulated? Dragon Force (Blue Dragon)- I have NEVER managed to get Dragon Force from a Blue Dragon. Please, somebody tell me how! Pandora's Box- Usually, it is used as a Final Attack by Dragon Zombie. I'm also fairly certain it will NOT be used if you learn Shadow Flare from a Dragon Zombie. *********************************** vii ******************************* WALKTHROUGH Not a walkthrough in the traditional, hand-holding sense, here I will highlight specific points of interest through the quest, materia locations, and boss strategies. GAME START- MAKO REACTOR #1 Check the guard for potions. BOSS:GUARD SCORPION Use Limits when you get them and potions when you need to. Don't attack when the tail is up. You have 10 minutes. Save Jesse on the way out (you have to). Pick up a couple levels if you have time. SECTOR 8 I fight the guards, but you don't have to. SECTOR 7 Get some sleep and get the materia tutorial. Now you can finally drop your materia (do so!) Head over to the store and pick up some Iron Bangles. A few grenades wouldn't hurt either (10 or 20 should do). Upstairs, you can get a free ether. Pawn it for a few extra gil toward Potions and Phoenix Downs (focus more on the former than the latter). TRAIN RIDE After the alarm goes off, talk to these people as you move up the train: Car #1: The crazy old guy at the back of the car; He gives a Phoenix Down Car #2: The black guy at the front of the car closest to the screen for a Hi-Potion Car #3: There's a guy that randomly steals something from you. You have to chase him down if you want it back. SEWERS/SECTOR 5 REACTOR You can proceed to the Reactor, or backtrack a few screens to a door blocked by two guards. You can fight these guards over and over until you run out of Potions or interest. It's your call, but a few extra levels never killed anyone but the enemy. BOSS:AIRBUSTER Try to hit it from the back. Abuse the attack button and use Limits like they were free. SECTOR 5 SLUMS Save Aeris with the barrels if you like, but it may benefit you to make her fight. Afterwards, grab the package by the door in her house before you skip town. WALL MARKET Pick up some new equipment (don't waste gil on the new Aeris weapon, though), Hypers, and Hi-Potions, and get Cloud in touch with his feminine side. Whether or not the Don chooses Cloud is meaningless; In fact, not being chosen allows you to score a free Phoenix Down and Ether. Grab the Hyper in Don's room. BOSS:APS Have everyone hypered and unload Limit Breaks on it. If you managed to get Cloud's 1-2 Limit Cross-Slash, using it will paralyze the boss for several turns. Have Aeris use Healing Wind and chuck grenades. This clinically retarded boss will often damage itself with its Sewer Tsunami, so in theory you could simply keep your HP up and let it kill itself. SEWERS After slapping Aps, you snag your first useable materia- Steal! At this point, Tifa packs the highest dexterity rating, so it's a good idea to stick her with shoplifting duty. TRAIN GRAVEYARD Keep your eyes peeled for items; There's a lot of them here. Now that you have Steal, be on the lookout for these enemies: Deenglow- Little dragon-type creatures, they carry Ethers Cripshay- Pink beetle bugs, have Potions and Eligor- Looks like a cyclops in a chariot, has the Striking Staff, which will help make Aeris slightly less useless. Timothy Cannelora was nice enough to remind me WHY stealing Ethers here is important: They sell for a hefty 750 gil a pop, so 99 of them for sale easily scores you a small fortune early on. Thanks, Tim. SECTOR 7 PILLAR The Aero Combatants you fight on the way up carry Potions, one item you can never have too many of, so be sure the heist some. BOSS:RENO Reno has nothing, so don't waste a turn stealing. Blast him with Limits and normal attacks. When he uses his Pyramid attack, target the affected character. SECTOR 6 You can grab the Sense materia now or wait until you come back by after hearing about Aeris's sordid past as an underage call girl from her mom. WALL MARKET Get the batteries (300 gil) and climb up the "golden shiny wire of hope". SHINRA HQ Bust in the front; You'll need the EXP. MAKE SURE to check the bulliten board for the Turtles Paradise flyer- You only get two chances, so you'd better do it sooner than later. On your way up the tower, watch for these beasties: Moth Slasher- A robot with a rotating bottom piece, they have Carbon Bangles (get 5; One each for your current party, and extras for Aeris and Red XIII, who you'll be running into soon. SOLDIER 3rd- Guys with swords. They have the Hardedge, a new sword for Cloud. 60th FLOOR Fight the guards instead of sneaking by for EXP. 62nd FLOOR If you get the password on the first try, trash the materia. 63rd FLOOR Get the A Coupon (far left room) at least. It gives you a Star Pendant. If you get all three, flush the All materia. 64th FLOOR Rest, save. Spend 250 gil at the vending machine, then bang on it. 67th FLOOR Until you trigger the scene where Cloud looks in the JENOVA cell, you will be free to return to the lower floors. If you don't have a full compliment of Carbon Bangles or a Hardedge (or two, or three...), CAREFULLY run circles in the small area between the hall and the JENOVA cell to trigger random battles. This way you can head back to floor 64 to rest for free, and floor 1 to restock your potions. Try to get your level to 14 or 15 here. After you get stuck here, ignore the chest (it holds the Poison materia), save, and ride the elevator to a boss. BOSS:HO512 and SAMPLES Put Barret with Cloud and Red. Make sure someone has the Star Pendant on. Use Limits and normal attacks on the big guy (Cross-Slash will stun it), but do not use Red's magic. 68th FLOOR Pick up the Enemy Skill materia and trash Red XIII's Fire and All. Put Carbon Bangles on Red and Aeris and choose a party. You may want to pick up some levels for Aeris, and have Steal equipped on somebody. 67th FLOOR Do not go on before getting AT LEAST two Deadly Wastes; Steal them from Zenenes, four legged beasts. Try to get Cloud a full Limit Bar. BOSS:HUNDRED GUNNER Put everyone in the back row. Barret is the only one here that can reach the boss with standard attacks, so Red and Aeris will be twiddling their thumbs between Limits. BOSS:HELI GUNNER Again, only Barret can reach with normal attacks. Have Red and Aeris chuck grenades in between Limits. BOSS:RUFUS and DARK NATION Those Deadly Wastes I told you to get? Use them now. They target both Rufus and his pet, so if the first one poisons them, don't waste another. Use your Limit Break on Dark Nation; at level 15 one Cross- Slash will kill it. After that, toss grenades at Rufus; I did him in with three. 1st FLOOR You can run back up to the store and pick up supplies before triggering the cutscene by heading for the door. HIGHWAY CHASE Put Aeris in the party. Remember to set the party up in reverse order; Back row in front and front in back. BOSS:MOTOR BALL Use the escape buttons immediately as the battle begins to avoid taking back damage. Use Limits and Cloud's physical attack; Have the others use grenades. WORLD MAP Finally out of Midgar! Choose your party and head for Kalm. On the way, pick a few fights and steal stuff. Devil Ride- Looks like a big motorcycle, carries Hi-Potions Kalm Fang- Purple wolf looking beasts, they have Ethers Custom Sweeper- A robot with gun arms, has the Atomic Scissors weapon for Barret AND uses the Matra Magic Enemy Skill!! KALM Inside the Inn, upstairs, there is a cabinet in the upper left corner of the room. Check it, and you won't be able to reach the item. Check it again and again, and Cloud will get pissed and kick the cabinet, causing it to drop a Megalixer. There's plenty more to pick up around town, and you may want a second Steal materia to speed up theft attempts. WORLD MAP Make a party of Cloud, Barret, and Aeris. Get everyone to level 20 and make sure Barret has his level 1-2 Limit, Mindblow. Fill his Limit Bar before heading to Midgar Marsh. You can also learn Lv. 4 Suicide while you're out; Mu's, a little squirrel in a hole in the ground, use it. BOSS:MIDGAR ZOLOM Put everybody in the back row for this fight. Start by blowing away its MP with Mindblow. If you have any Deadly Wastes left from the Shinra Building, use them to try to poison it. After that, use physical attacks and Limits on it. Be warned, you may fight this 'boss' multiple times!! MYTHRIL MINE Ark Dragons, creatures that look like a flying bug of some kind, use the Enemy Skill Flamethrower. FORT CONDOR Agree to help, even if you don't actually do so. This will allow you to rest free in Fort Condor for much, if not all, of the game. By playing the minigame and winning the first battle, you get a Magic Comb for Red XIII WORLD MAP Enter the forests near Fort Condor and get Yuffie. While you search for her, steal from the Blue Impulse bird enemies to get a Boomerang. As soon as Yuffie joins the team, replace Aeris with her. Yuffie has a higher attack, a long range weapon, and her level 1-2 Limit (which you should get now) does the same thing as Healing Wind. Yuffie comes equipped with a new materia, Throw. JUNON HARBOR Make a party of Cloud, Yuffie, and Barret. Change Barret's weapon to a long range one and put the Enemy Skill materia on Cloud. Pick up some more grenades at the weapon shop, and head down to the beach. BOSS: BOTTOMSWELL Use normal attacks and Limits with Barret and Yuffie. Have Cloud use Enemy Skills or toss grenades between Limits. Bottomswell uses an attack similar to Reno's Pyrimid; The difference is, Bubble can only be destroyed by magic. Use Matra Magic for this, as it targets all enemies. If Cloud is bubbled, let him suffocate and revive him immediately with a Phoenix Down. Lastly, Bottomswell uses Big Wave as a final attack. Keep your HP above 150 to weather this attack. JUNON HARBOR Do the CPR event and rest. When Priscilla gives you Shiva, demean her by throwing the materia away right in front of her. JUNON Don't worry about the marching. After you get dismissed, do some shopping. Junon is divided into two sides, Upper Junon (where you start off), and Lower Junon (past the submarine tunnel). Depending on what you're currently carrying, the weapons here may be worth a look: -DON'T get the Mythril Saber for Cloud -The Grand Glove in Upper Junon is the best weapon so far for Tifa -If you missed the Atomic Scissors for Barret, Upper Junon has it -Magic Comb is Red's best weapon; If you didn't get it, the Diamond Pin in Upper Junon is the next best thing -If you didn't steal a Boomerang for Yuffie, Upper Junon has it (The Upper Junon weapon shop is down the alleyway with the blue light.) MAKE SURE to get the second Enemy Skill here!! Also note you can now buy Hi-Potions; Grab a few of those. Save at the Inn before reporting to the sendoff at the docks. The goal here is to get the President's Mood above 100; Doing so will net you a Force Stealer sword for Cloud. SHINRA BOAT Do what you do. Don't waste a Tranquilizer to move Yuffie; It's an All materia behind her. Once you can go below, take Cloud, Yuffie, and your highest HP party member and go. Give the Enemy Skill materia with Flamethrower on it to whoever has the lowest attack. In the holds, get the Wind Slash and equip it on Yuffie, the Force Stealer on Cloud, and the best weapon on your third member. BOSS:JENOVA-BIRTH Use normal attacks, Limits, and Flamethrower. Don't worry about its Stop magic. SHINRA BOAT Ignore the Ifrit materia JENOVA drops and exit. COSTA DEL SOL MAKE SURE to get the Fire Ring here; It's downstairs in the place for sale (the first door Cloud comes to). MT. COREL Fall through the train tracks and get the items. Ignore the Transform materia and remember to climb the mountianside near the bridge switch for 10 Phoenix Downs. NORTH COREL After Barret gets bitch slapped, leave town by way of the south exit to the world map. WORLD MAP Run around and gain levels, boost Limits, and raise 30,000 gil for a Lifetime Pass, then reenter North Corel and ride the tram. GOLD SAUCER Cait Sith joins the party with two materia equipped: Transform, which you should dispose of now; And Manipulate. You now possess one of the most powerful materia in the game. COREL PRISON Put that new materia to good use here and get Laser and Matra Magic on both of your Enemy Skill materia. Equip Barret with the best equipment you have. Set his Limit to level one. BOSS:DYNE Barret is alone here. Use Enemy Skills (Flamethrower works well) and abuse Limits. GOLD SAUCER CHOCOBO RACE Ignore the Ramuh materia and win the race. WORLD MAP !!DO THIS NOW!! Cruise around the desert surrounding the Gold Saucer until you encounter a Harpy (it looks sort of like a chimera). Learn Aqualung from it. From there, head back toward Costa Del Sol. On the beaches nearby, look for Beach Plugs (they look like squids or jellyfish). Manipulate one and learn Big Guard. Now drive the buggy into Costa Del Sol and stow away on the ship to Junon. From Junon go toward Fort Condor. In the grassy areas around Fort Condor you will find Zemzellet (an enourmous bird). Manipulate it and get White Wind. Next, head back into Mythril Mine and get Flamethrower on your second Enemy Skill. Now comes the hard part. Exit the Mines near Midgar Marsh. Save, heal, and put everyone in the back row. Equip one character with the Fire Ring and BOTH Enemy Skill materia. Enter the marsh and fight a Midgar Zolom. DO NOT Mindblow it. Cast Big Guard on your party, then get your magic carrying member's turn up again. This time use Laser to halve the Zolom's HP and make it stand up. From now on, DO NOTHING with the character holding the E. Skills! Have the other two carefully shave down its HP. At some point, the Zolom will kick one of your characters out of the battle (from my experience, it MUST do this, or it will not use Beta). When it is very near death, it will unleash Beta on the team, likely killing the non-Fire Ring equipped character. The one with the Ring will nullify the attack AND learn Beta on BOTH Enemy Skills. Finish the Zolom off and go back through Mythril Mines. You may now return to your regularly scheduled game... GONGAGA VILLAGE You can learn Frog Song from Touch Me's (little frog enemies) in the forest around Gongaga. BOSS:RENO and RUDE Use Big Guard. Limits and Beta make this a short fight. GONGAGA VILLAGE Pick up the Deathblow materia on your way out. COSMO CANYON Finally, some new weapons! Stock up and go learn about the Lifestream. CAVE OF THE GI You can pick up the Enemy Skill Death Sentence from either Gi Specters (they look like skeletons with spears) or Sneaky Steps (they look like dogs. Very @#$%ed up dogs). Sneaky Steps also drop M-Tentacles; You'll want these later. BOSS:STINGER This is a boss in the same sense that Midgar Zolom is; A regular enemy (or one you fight more than once) that's tough enough to be a boss. You will encounter no less than two of these huge spiders as you trek through Gi Cave. Use Aqualung, Beta, and Limits to finish them before they finish you. BOSS:GI NATTAK Throw an X-Potion at it. Run around the Gravity materia it leaves behind. NIBELHEIM Decide if you want Vincent or not. If so, put Aeris in the party and set her Limit to level 1. SHINRA MANSION Assuming you want Vincent, wander around and get into fights until Aeris has a full Limit bar, then go upstairs to the safe. Enter: RIGHT 36, LEFT 10, RIGHT 59, RIGHT 97 BOSS:LOST NUMBER Have Aeris use Seal Evil on it. If you got any M-Tentacles in the Cave of the Gi, use them to poison it, then hammer away with Beta, Aqualung, and Limits. At half HP, it will turn purple or red, depending on the last hit it took. -Purple form: If a physical attack takes Lost Number below half HP, it will turn purple. Purple form uses powerful physical attacks and has an extremely high physical defense. Abuse Beta and Aqualung. -Red form: If a magic attack reduces it beyond half HP, it will turn red and display high magic attack power and magic defense. Use Limits to finish it off. SHINRA MANSION Beating Lost Number will get you the Basement Key. Talk to Vincent downstairs. After that, enter the library, where Sephiroth will throw a Destruct materia at you (leave it on the floor), then try to leave. Vincent will join you. MT. NIBEL You can steal Gold Armlets from Dragons here. BOSS:MATERIA KEEPER This will be a long fight. Not because the boss is actually tough, though it can cast Cure 2 on itself, but because it takes its own sweet time to get around to casting Trine. Once it does and you've got yet another Enemy Skill under your belt, use Aqualung (not Beta; Materia Keeper absorbs Fire magic) and Limits to bury it. ROCKET TOWN Look at the rocket with the old guy to get the Yoshiyuki. BOSS:PALMER Same old story: Limits and Beta. WUTAI-SEE SIDEQUESTS SECTION GOLD SAUCER Stop by the Ghost Hotel and pick up some status curative items. You don't have to win in the Battle Arena to get the Keystone; However, if you do win, you get a Protect Vest and a Chocobo Feather. To stand a fighting chance, equip Cloud with the best gear, an accesssory that eliminates annoying status effects (I prefer the Peace Ring; It prevents Berserk, so you always have the chance to pick your actions),keep Big Guard up, abuse Beta, and try to hold your Limits until you absolutely need them, especially the last battle. TEMPLE OF THE ANCIENTS There's a lot of stuff to pick up here, but the two items of greatest interest are the Morph materia, located in the center of the rolling rock hall, and the Ribbon, found through door V in the clock room. DO NOT miss these items! You can also get knocked off the clock to get the Nail Bat, a wicked looking and brutally powerful weapon for Cloud. BOSS:RED DRAGON Put up Big Gaurd ASAP (for the Haste effect). If you have any poison inducing items, such as M-Tentacles or Deadly Wastes, left in your inventory, use them to poison the beast. After that, Limits and Aqualung; Avoid Beta, it will heal the dragon. Ignore the Bahamut materia it drops. BOSS:DEMON'S GATE This boss is fast! Use Big Guard immediately to speed up your party, then lay into it with Limits, Deathblow, and regular attacks. Magic causes pathetic damage to this guy. BONE VILLAGE You can pick up some new armor, including the somewhat useful Rune Armlets (2X growth in 4 slots), then dig up the Lunar Harp. It's on the top level near the tent. SLEEPING FOREST Leave the Kjata materia alone, but definitely grab the Water Ring, as it will prove very handy real soon. CITY OF THE ANCIENTS The third Enemy Skill resides here; Don't miss it! Also, be sure to get the Aurora Armlet from the back-center cave area (where the waterfall projector dealy is). Put the Water Ring on your strongest attacker, along with only the NEW Enemy Skill. BOSS:JENOVA-LIFE Put up Big Guard to protect the characters not equipped with the Water Ring. Make sure you let JENOVA cast Aqualung once, so you learn it on your new Enemy Skill (this way, if Aqualung kills the others, you still leave with it on the third materia), then hit it with whatever you like (except Aqualung, of course). The character packing the Water Ring is invincible in this fight, so take all the time you want. CORRAL VALLEY CAVE Get the Hypnocrown, it will make catching up that new Enemy Skill easier. Keep your eyes open for Boundfats (they look like yellow hedgehogs)- They have Death Sentence. ICICLE INN There's a Hero Drink in the house with the map. Grab it for later. GREAT GLACIER Just passing through... No need to fight for the Alexander materia. GAEA'S CLIFF Lots to do here. In the second "inside" section, when you come to the area with the four icicles hanging from the ceiling, get the Fire Armlet from the box on the right. In the room directly below this one, get into fights until you encounter a Stilva- it looks just like the Materia Keeper boss, only red, and it's going to hook you up with Trine for your new E. Skill, as well as Magic Breath for all three! Outside these rooms are two paths running parallel to each other. This is the best place to find Marlboros, and pretty much your only chance to get Bad Breath (and you're going to want it!) Further up the cliffs, you'll find a room with a Save Point and a pool that restores your HP and MP. In this room you can also find Blue Dragons (look like... Blue Dragons); They have the Dragon Force Enemy Skill. If you figure out how to get it, tell me, please, since I've never managed it (even in a regular game). Use the Save Point and equip your characters as follows: -On one, equip the Aurora Armlet AND the Fire Ring -On another, the Fire Armlet AND the Ice Ring (you did get it, right?) -On the remaining character (if you're using Yuffie, this should be her, so her Limit bar will fill), equip the Dragon Armelet. Now head down the hall. BOSS:SCHIZO Schizo's left head is Ice elemental, and the right is Fire elemental. What this means is that your two characters carrying the Fire/Ice armors and accessories will be nigh invincible, and your third party member will be taking half damage from most of Schizo's attacks. Now for the fine print: Schizo will also stomp and cast Quake3, which WILL hurt your guys, and killing a head will result in a brutal final attack that causes severe damage across the board. Use Trine, Aqualung, and Limits to beat Schizo into submission. If Yuffie is in the party and gets a Limit, save it for Schizo's final attack(s), and heal her with potions instead. THE CRATER Tifa joins you whether you want her or not. Put Fire protective gear on your crew before going too far. BOSS:JENOVA-DEATH Like LIFE, DEATH acesses only one element, and this time it's Fire. It also uses Silence, but, really, so what? With a Fire Ring and Fire Armlet equipped, two of your characters are invulnerable, so you could throw rocks at the damn thing until it dies, if that's your fetish. THE CRATER Sephiroth gets the Black Materia. Cloud freaks out. Weapons awaken. It's going to be one of those days all week... JUNON Hook Barret up with good equipment if you haven't been using him. Yuffie and dumbass Cait Sith are also forced into the party for a little bit, so make sure to equip them properly (you can always stick double growth equipment on Cait Sith and load him up with materia... At least then he'd serve sort of a purpose.) WORLD MAP Now that you have the Highwind, fly up north to the Chocobo Sage's place (it's a little house entirely surrounded by mountains) and talk to his chocobo for the last Enemy Skill, if you want it. Revisit everyplace you've been and update the two new E. Skills. You should be able to get everything but Laser and Bad Breath on all four. You can finish Wutai Pagoda now, if you want. Consider getting a third Steal materia. Once you're finished bombing around in your new ride, head down to Mideel to progress with the story. MIDEEL Usually, you'd get the Contain materia here. Isn't it nice to know you don't have to feed and play with somebody elses' chocobo to get a shiny rock? They got a lot of new stuff here, including weapons that are (finally) better than the stuff you've been picking up in treasure boxes, some of the better accessories (mainly the elemental rings, if you want more than one of each), and the Remedy items. Just remember all this crap (especially the weapons), will drain your pocketbook pretty quickly. If you're strapped for cash, you should get Cid's new weapon, and equipment for two others, not including Tifa, who's about to bail out on you. HIGHWIND Cid is elected new group leader. Make your party and equip them, then go after the Huge Materia. You can go to Corel or Fort Condor, your pick; I always go to Fort Condor first- It's closer and a quicker battle. FORT CONDOR This will be the easiest Fort Condor battle yet. Take the guys money, and when the minigame starts, DO NOTHING! Set the battle speed to max and wait for the enemy to reach the shack without putting up any troops of your own. This forces you into a fight with Cmd. Grand Horn. He's a pushover, and when you kill him, you get not only the Huge Materia and Phoenix (which you have to throw away), but an Imperial Guard armor as well! Plus you get to keep the money! COREL You have to go north out of town and follow the train tracks to the reactor. This will bring out the train, and you've got ten minutes to catch it and reach the locomotive. MATERIA TRAIN Each car has an enemy you must fight to proceed. There are four cars and the coal car. -CAR #4 You have to fight a single Gas Ducter. One or two Betas will do it. -CAR #3 Two Gas Ducters this time. A couple more Betas. -CAR #2 You'll fight a Wolfmeister here. Use Big Guard for the haste effect and Aqualung it. -CAR #1 The Eagle Gun guards this car. Use Big Guard again for the speed boost, then unload Limits and Trine to finish it quickly. You can steal the only Warriors Bangle in the game from Eagle Gun if you have time. -COAL CAR/LOCOMOTIVE There's a Shinra Attack Squad on the engine, but the guy you fight is laughably weak. Beta him and he'll go away. Now, just stop the train... COREL You'll get the Ultima materia if you stopped the train, but you can't keep it. You can also get Barret's Ultimate Limit, Catastrophie. MIDEEL Equip all the Steal materias you have, then go check on Cloud. BOSS:ULTIMATE WEAPON Throw up Big Guard for haste, then Steal from it to get a Cursed Ring. Ultimate flies away after a few round whether you get the ring or not, and this is your ONLY chance to get it. Why? The Cursed Ring gives a sick boost to all of the wearer's stats, with the slight drawback of causing Death Sentence on the character, which can be easily countered by casting Death Force on him/her at the outset of every battle. Put this bad boy on Cloud, along with a Gigas Armlet (STR +30), and you won't need to cast Death Force... If you manage to get the ring right away, hit Ultimate with Limits and Magic Breath to deal heavy damage. CLOUD'S SUBCONSCIOUSNESS Seriously, that's what Tifa calls it. Anyway, I hate this part; It's annoying and time consuming, but there's no way around it. Talk to the top Cloud first, then the left one... From there, the game will hold your hand. WORLD MAP With Cloud back in the party, the Gold Saucer is reopened. Now's a good time to get Omnislash (at least)... See the Battle Square section under Sidequests for advice. You can also get Tifa's Ultimate Limit in Nibelhiem, and the Key to Sector 5 now. UNDERWATER REACTOR Try to get Cloud's Limit bar full before you reach the Reactor core (the room Yuffie calls a crane game). BOSS:CARRY ARMOR This boss sucks. Horribly. It's about 12.5 times as hard if you come unprepared, so don't. Use Meteorain or Omnislash first thing. This should eliminate its arms; If not, pound it with Magic Breath or anybody else's Limit you may have ready. When both arms are gone, use your VERY NEXT TURN to get up Big Guard. Carry Armor will start blasting you with Lapis Laser, and will eat you alive without Big Guard protecting you. Just keep on it with Magic Breath and Limits until you finish it. SUBMARINE DOCK You can find Cid's triple growth Scimitar here. It's way back by the submarine. You can get the Leviathan Scales too, but you won't miss them if you don't. SUB BATTLE You start out right behind the Red Sub; Just lock on and fire all of your torpedoes up its rudder flaps. UNDERWATER The game tells you to go to Rocket Town; Ignore that fo now. Get back in the sub and retrieve the Huge Materia from the Red Sub by driving into it, then go find the Sunken Gelinka plane. Watch out for Emerald Weapon down here. CRASHED GELINKA Go through the door to the right of the Save Point first. This room contains the Double Cut materia, an Escort Guard armor, and Yuffie's Ultimate Weapon, the Conformer. You'll want to equip all of this stuff, as well as all your Steal materias again. Now go through the door to the left of the Save Point. BOSS:RENO and RUDE Steal, steal, steal!!! Reno has a Touph Ring (heh), and Rude has the amazing Ziedrich armor. Once you have these, Beta them into the ground. CRASHED GELINKA Past Reno and Rude you'll find the cargo bay. It's all messed up... Aside from a lot of tough enemies (which you can Morph for source items; Yuffie and her new Conformer make this a breeze), you'll find Cid's Ultimate Limit, Highwind. UNDERWATER You can now proceed with the game by heading over to Rocket Town, or you can follow the left wall from the Crashed Gelinka to an underwater cave. At the end of the cave, surface into a lake with a waterfall. PHS Vincent into the party (if you have him) and walk into the waterfall to meet Lucrecia, Sephiroth's mother. Leave and get into ten or fifteen random battles, then return for both Vincent's Ultimate Weapon and Limit. From this cave, follow the left wall again to another underwater cave, where you will find the Key to the Ancients. That's all you can do under the sea, so dock near Junon and fly over to Rocket Town. ROCKET TOWN If Cid isn't in your party, he will be in a minute. Equip him, and anybody else you have with Lightning protection, then head up the rocket. BOSS:RUDE Rude likes to use Bolt, but you're covered for that. Take out the Attack Squad guys so you can get to Rude, then steal another Ziedrich from him before you take him down. SHINRA NO. 26 You can get the Huge Materia by using the code O,,X,X (circle, square, X, X). Cid will accuse you of cheating if you get it on the first try. WORLD MAP Park the Highwind and run back in to Rocket Town. Talk to the old guy who gave you the Yoshiyuki before and you'll get Cid's Ultimate Weapon, Venus Gospel. COSMO CANYON Leave the Huge Materia in Bugenhagen's lab and fly back out to the City of the Ancients. CITY OF THE ANCIENTS Make your way to the back cave, where you found the Aurora Armlet. Since you already have the Key to the Ancients (you do, right?), simply keep talking to Bugenhagen to make the plot proceed. HIGHWIND Fly back to Midgar and land near the coast. Wait for Diamond Weapon. You'll almost have time for a nap... Equip Fire protective armor while you wait. BOSS:DIAMOND WEAPON Diamond has an extremely high physical defense, so use Limits and your most powerful Enemy Skills on it. You can steal a Rising Sun for Yuffie from it, but why? HIGHWIND You're supposed to go chcek on the Northern Crater, but if you want Cloud's Ultimate Weapon and a few extra Ribbons, fly over to the huge hole near Junon to start taking on Ultimate Weapon. As a side note, you may want to get Cloud's Limit, and one other charcter's (anyone with a multi-hitting Limit, preferably their Ultimate, will work) bars full first. ULTIMATE WEAPON-SEE SIDEQUESTS ANCIENT FOREST-SEE SIDEQUESTS NORTHERN CRATER The barrier is gone, but before you can go after Sephiroth, you have to save Midgar from blowing up. MIDGAR Ahh... Back into Midgar. The memories... The nostalgia... The smell. Once again you're in the sewers. Look for Behemoths here; They use the ??? Enemy Skill. Also, Crazysaws (they look just like Moth Slashers) Morph into Turbo Ethers. When you get to the sewer pipes, run toward the screen and head the wrong way for a good while to get the W-Item materia. It's right next to a Save Point; You'd have to be blind or stupid to miss it. On the way down (or back) you'll find a lot of chests holding Source items. When you get back to where you started and try to proceed, the Turks show up again. You don't have to fight them, but they have a lot of good stuff. BOSS:RENO, RUDE, and ELENA STEAL! Reno has another Touph Ring, Rude's got another Ziedrich, and Elena has a Minerva Band. Once they're cleaned out, Aqualung and Limits make quick work of them. MIDGAR SEWERS At the end of the tunnel, you can go back up to the Shinra Building. This lets you get Cait Sith's Ultimate Weapon from a locker on the 64th Floor (like you want it...). Those vending machines you kicked a long time ago will give you a Mind Source and a Speed Source, provided you DID kick them. Floor 63 has a chest holding Cid's Glow Lance, the shop on the ground floor has two chests with weapons in them, and this is your ABSOLUTE LAST CHANCE to read the Turtle's Paradise letter if you missed it before. After you're done here, go back into the sewers and backtrack to the base of the Mako Cannon. BOSS:PROUD CLOD The AP to difficulty ratio of this fight is extremely disproportionate, so come packing triple growth weapons if you need to grow materia. Put up Big Guard, then attack with 2x/4x Cut, Slash-All, and Aqualung. If you kill off the Jamar Armor, you can cause more damage, but it's not important. SISTER RAY There are two boxes near the stairs. Open them! GET THE MYSTILE!! At the Save Point, put Barret in the party and start up the stairs. You will come across a chest holding Barret's Ultimate Weapon, Missing Score (it's only there if Barret is.) You can then backtrack to the Save Point and remove Barret if you like, then go to the top of the stairs to reach the mainframe. BOSS:HOJO Hojo goes though three transformations, so he's almost three bosses in one. Almost... -HOJO Just attack Hojo and don't waste time on the capsule enemies. Magic Breath is great here. -HELLETIC HOJO If you skipped it in the first round, you'll want Big Guard up now. Start by taking out the Right Arm, then focus on the body. If you get a Limit, find an alternate means of finishing him off, if you can. If your whole crew hits Limit, it's all right to sacrifice one. -LIFEFORM HOJO Lifeform does not muck around. If you didn't get a full set of Ribbons (shame on you), you'll have to make good use of White Wind to keep on top of all the nasty status effects Lifeform can hit you with. As soon as he transforms, hit him with any Limits you have. This is sverely bad for his health, and a high powered Omnislash can take him out. However, if you fail to take him down in the first couple turns, or have no Limits available, you'll need to put Big Guard back up and hit him hard and fast with 2x/4x Cut and Magic Breath until you get a Limit. WORLD MAP If you haven't gotten Omnislash (or any of the Ultimate Limits), a full set of Ribbons, everybody's Ultimate Weapon, or all of that good stuff, now's a good time. Otherwide, it's time to get down to it. NORTHERN CRATER DO NOT MISS THE FIRST CHEST!! IT IS THE SAVE CRYSTAL!! DO NOT MISS THE FIRST CHEST!! Proceed down the crater until you reach the place where you can split up the party. NEVER USE THE SAVE CRYSTAL IN THIS ROOM. You stand a good chance of ruining your file and being trapped in the crater if you do. In this room, send Tifa RIGHT, and EVERYBODY else LEFT. At the next junction, send Cloud and his partners UP, and any remaining characters DOWN. Go through the path to the bottom of the cave. When you pop out in the area with the spiral of rocks in the center (the bottom of the crater), go counterclockwise, toward the green chest, and up to the cave opening. Go back up this side of the left path. Now, eventually, you'll come to a blue colored room with a mako waterfall in the background. Floating on a ledge is the Mega-All materia; If you intend to try taking on the Weapons, grab it by pressing the confirm button as you jump past it. You'll come back to the room with the big rock in it; Go out the top to the room where you first split up the party and go down the RIGHT path. The first chest on this path is the second Mystile-GET IT!! Also, along this path, you'll encounter Jezemeny's (they look like a woman in a swimsuit); Manipulate her and learn Angel Whisper. This is perhaps one of the most important Enemy Skills in the game: It revives a fallen ally, restores 100% HP even if the target is not dead, and cures any status effects! The ONLY thing that makes this spell less powerful than White Wind is it only hits one target at a time. Back at the bottom of the Crater, you'll meet up with any party members you sent down separate paths. Talk to all of them to get some extra items; Especially talk to Tifa, and she'll give you ANOTHER Mystile This is a good place to use the Save Crystal. Before going ANY further, make sure you're ready. EVERY member of the party you intend to take up against Sephiroth MUST have 7000+ HP. A level 2 Double Cut (4x Cut) for two of them, and a level 1 Slash-All (NOT Flash!!) is HIGHLY recommended, as well as a full set of Ribbons, and all three Mystiles. If you're ready, and don't want to tackle the Weapons, head down the center of the Crater; Otherwise, you need to backtrack out of the Crater. PLANET CORE You'll descend a series of platforms. Most of them have an Iron Man or a Draagon Zombie, each of them pretty tough customers. Just remember, you CAN run from these battles. Equip a Slash-All on Cloud on the way down, and 4x Cuts on the others. BOSS:JENOVA SYNTHESIS Put up Big Guard as soon as the battle begins. Attack with physical attacks and Limits, keep your HP up, and do not let Big Guard down. When JENOVA starts counting down, it's preparing to cast Ultima. Go all out and finish it before it can. BOSS:BIZARRO-SEPHIROTH Before the fight begins, you'll have a chance to set up your party(s). Make your first party the group you want to face the final boss, and give them the Mystiles, Ribbons, and Enemy Skill materia. Put Slash-All on Cloud (or your best attacker), and 4x Cut on the others. USE A HYPER ON CLOUD!!! He MUST be in Fury for the end boss, and you cannot do it in battle because of the Ribbons. If you have a multi-party setup, just do whatever with the rest of the guys; You'll be ignoring them anyway. The main party will be able to hit all of Bizarro's parts without the help. On to the fight... Slash-All and Aqualung will damage all of Bizarro's parts and kill off his extremeties quickly. Keep Big Guard up to minimize damage. Every time you kill off a part, you'll be asked if you're worried about the other parties; Pick 'not really' and continue the battle. Once you kill everything but the Core and Torso, the Core will start using Cure magic. Let Cloud get his Limit, and kill the Head with another character if it was revived, then use Omnislash on the Core and Torso. The Core will take 0 damage, but without the Head as an extra target, at least half of the hits from Omnislash should hit the Torso, and shoud be enough to take it out. BOSS:SAFER SEPHIROTH This is it: The final battle, and Cloud's going to win it for you. The others are just support. Safer's actions follow a specific pattern. While he's going through the motions, you need to be doing the following: First, put up Big Guard. During the next few turns, feed Cloud ALL of your Hero Drinks (at least three)- W-Item helps out here. Now, keep everyone at max HP (use Megalixers if you have to, but you HAVE to have one left...) You're waiting for Super Nova, which should be up shortly. When the animation begins, if Cloud's turn is up, switch to somebody else and open the Item menu. Select a Megalixer and jam on the confirm button. After Super Nova, two things should happen: First, the Megalixer should hit, saving you from Break (Safer's next attack); and, second, Cloud should have a Limit. Your next action should be Omnislash; Followed by revelling at how easy the last boss of the game is... *********************************** viii ******************************* SIDEQUESTS Stuff you don't have to do... WUTAI I advise doing this sidequest as soon as you are able, which is immediately after getting the Tiny Bronco in Rocket Town. Land on Wutai, and put Aeris in your party,as she is going to be your best method of healing. Put anti-poison accessories on your guys. Yuffie will take off with all of your materia, so get it back... On your way to Wutai, you will encounter Bizzare Bugs (they look like butterflies); Usually in groups of 3. Slaughter them mercilessly! They drop X-Potions, and by the time you reach town, you should have a nice collection of them. Once you actually get to Wutai, and begin chasing Yuffie down, you have to pick up an MP Absorb materia, which Yuffie promptly steals. Remember to ditch it once you get your pretty rocks back. After the Don makes his reappearance, pick up some Fire Veils and Swift Bolts from the item shop. Stop at the Save Point and PHS Barret into the party before heading up the hill. Set his Limit to level 1. DA CHAO Get Barret's Limit bar full. BOSS:RAPPS Blast it with Mindblow first thing. That takes care of its Aero 3 magic. After that, use those magic items you just bought and Limits. Corneo will be taking another trip to the pet cemetary soon enough. WORLD MAP PHS Yuffie into the party. You can roam the beaches noth of town until you find an Adamantaimai (it's a huge turtle)to manipulate and learn Death Force from. Head back into town and start back up Da Chao. When you run into a pack of Razor Weeds (they look like... Weeds), MAKE SURE you manipulate one and get the Magic Hammer Enemy Skill. Once you have Magic Hammer, you can go, or start another side quest by returning to Godo's house and entering the Pagoda. PAGODA OF THE FIVE SACRED GODS Only Yuffie can participate in the battles held on each floor, so give her your best equipment. If you are taking on this quest as early as you can, there is no need to complete all five floors; In fact, if you want a fourth full Enemy Skill, you CAN"T complete the trial yet. The goal at this point is to beat three of the bosses and acquire an Ice Ring BOSS:GORKI Cast Big Guard and then Magic Hammer it until it runs out of MP. After that, pound it with Limits and Beta. BOSS:SHAKE Put up Big Guard immediately, then use Limits and Beta. BOSS:CHECKOV Equip Yuffie with a Jem Ring before engaging Checkov. Use Big Guard, Limits, and Beta. Beat Checkov to get the Ice Ring. BOSS:STANIV Cast Big Guard. Normal attacks and Limits should suffice for this fight. BOSS:S. GODO It's probably best to come back later for the big dog. If you want Trine on the fourth Enemy Skill, you HAVE to wait. Once you have the Ribbon, Bad Breath on your Enemy Skill, and the last E.Skill materia, you'll be set to take him. Cast Big Guard first thing. Use Bad Breath next, then Limits, Beta, Aqualung, or Magic Breath. With enough patience, you can actually Magic Hammer away all of his MP to prevent him from casting Cure 2 (though he randomly casts it on Yuffie, so you may not want to do this). With Godo poisoned, your primary concern is just to keep Yuffie conscious. Get your licks in when you can, but let poison do the real work. GOLD SAUCER BATTLE SQUARE Requirements: Minimum fighter level 60 or 5000+ HP Dragon Armlet/Escort Guard/Zierdich/Mystile Ribbon Enemy Skills: Big Guard, White Wind, Bad Breath, Beta 400+ GP Recommended: Slash-All materia (normal battles)/Double Cut (lv.2) (Special battle) Steal materia lv.2 (for Mug) or Deathblow materia Enemy Skills: Magic Hammer, Magic Breath, Frog Song Items-99 EACH: X-Potion, Hi-Potion, Ether/Turbo Ether, Fire Veil, Swift Bolt, Remedy (or each type of status cure) -Note that for Turbo Ethers, 30 or so will do, less with Magic Hammer and normal Ethers as backup -Even with 99 Remedys, several of each type of status cure will help conserve Remedys First off, in order to participate, you must have GP, and plenty of it. The easiest, most reliable way to obtain GP is by racing chocobos... But you have no chocobo. The second best way, then, is the GP guy. He's a little guy in a green shirt that appears randomly at the entrance of the Gold Saucer, near the top of the screen by the tram. If you have a Lifetime Pass, you can simply run back and forth in and out of the Gold Saucer until he shows up, and he'll sell you GP at a rate of 1 GP to 100 gil. With thirty or forty grand lying around, you'll be all set. Next, without a stack of HP Plus materia, you need a decent amount of HP to last more than two battles. Mideel forest is a great place to boost levels, and to fatten up your wallet for thr GP exchange. As for the actual arena, there are several tips that can help in a Command only game, as well as a normal game: -Alway start the first battle with Big Guard, as the Haste effect will carry on through all eight fights. HOWEVER, if the first enemy set contains Jayjujayumes (little multicolored caterpillars), eliminate them FIRST, because they use Silk Thread, which causes Slow and cancels your speed boost. -In betwwen battles, you encounter slots displaying various debilitating effects, and some helpful ones. AVOID the helpful slots when possible (don't be afraid to try and get a Cure slot late in the string if you need it); They award almost no Battle Points. Instead, try to aim for Status effects, as your Ribbon will cancel them out, but you will still recieve the BP bonus. Also, in a Command Only game, try to get Broken Materias (minus, of course, yellow), since you carry no other type. -Watch out for Half HP/MP slots, they can be severe handicaps, especially if you get more than one. Broken Weapon and Armor can seriously hurt you, and Broken Accessory and Sealed Item can end you quickly, especially if you manage to get both. -Many battles can be won by casting Bad Breath, then recovering the lost MP with Magic Hammer. While the enemy is asleep, recover any missing HP with potions or White Wind, then simply wait. When the enemy wakes up, as long as the Poison effect is hurting it, cast Frog Song to put it back to sleep until it runs out of HP. Time consuming but effective. -Mug can be used to conserve Limits. It deals a good bit of damage and isn't random like Deathblow, plus you get to keep anything you steal. -ALWAYS go into the last battle with a Limit ready, even if you have to mess around in the seventh battle to fill up your bar. -If it's available (it usually is), try to hit the Break All Materia slot for the final battle. It gives a sick boost to your BP, and, with a Limit ready, you shouldn't need any other commands. **SPECIAL BATTLES** You don't have to fully complete the string, since doing so only gets you a useless (for this game, anyway) Final Attack materia. However, you should fight up to the third battle; The enemy is an Ochu, and you can Morph it for a Ribbon as many times as you like.] Alternately, you could simply keep a Morph materia on your guy and, in the event you meet up with an Ochu in the normal battle (it will appear in the last fight), you can Morph him there until you have enough Ribbons to satisfy you, and not bother with the Special Battle at all. BOSS:ULTIMATE WEAPON You have to fight Ultimate Weapon several times before it will die, and chase it down in the Highwind between battles. I suggest saving between fights, especially if you're taking him on at the earliest opportunity, because Ultimate likes to stop and engage at places that will force the plot to advance before you're ready for it to, namely the Northern Crater and Midgar. Ultimate Weapon isn't very ultimate, and it only stays to fight for a round or two before it chickens out and runs to another place. Stay right on its tail, ram it if you can (it'll find a new resting spot quicker if you do), and when it stops, drop to the ground, heal and save. That way you know where he is (if you manage to lose him, fly around randomly until you get him in your sights again; My experience is that, if you fly around at the point where the four corners of the world map intersect, you'll spot him pretty quick.) You can avoid unwanted plot advancement by coming into the first battle with Omnislash and another multi-hit, high powered Limit ready. At the onset of the first battle, select both Limits; Usually, only one will go off, but if you're REALLY lucky, the second activates too, before he flies away. If you get both, Ultimate will make a beeline for Cosmo Canyon. If you only get one, chase it down and nail it with the other Limit, and that should send it packing. Note that using this strategy will prevent you from stealing from Ultimate; In EVERY land based fight (your crew is on the ground), it has a Reflect Ring, and in EVERY air battle (your guys are on the Highwind), it has a Circlet. When Ultimate heads for Cosmo Canyon, it's ready to die. Land the Highwind, save, and pile ALL of your enemy skills onto one character. You'll want this to be your hardest hitter. Also equip them with a Reflect Ring (you'll have one from the JENOVA-Death fight.) When you engage Ultimate for the last time, you have one of two strategies to use: First, use ONLY the character packing the Reflect Ring to attack; Or, second, Sense Ultimate, then pick at its HP with everybody until it gets dangerously low, then use ONLY that one character to finish it off. When it goes, Ultimate will unleash Shadow Flare against the last person that hit it; Having the Reflect Ring on will bounce the attack back at Ultimate, and you will still learn Shadow Flare on ALL of your Enemy Skill materia! Ultimate Weapon will then blow up, opening the path to the Ancient Forest, and drop Cloud's Ultimate Weapon, the Ultima Weapon. With this, as well as Omnislash and the W-Summon materia, you can now access the Special Battles in the Gold Saucer Battle Square. ANCIENT FOREST With Ultimate Weapon out of the way, you can get to this place. It's kind of annoying, too (not nearly to the extent of Cloud's Subconscious), but for playing with the bugs and frogs you can pick up the Slash-All materia, a Minerva Band, and Cloud's Apocalypse, the only other triple growth weapon in the game. THIRD MYSTILE In the Northern Crater, when you reach the place where you can split up the party, send Tifa RIGHT, and EVERYBODY else LEFT. Proceed to the bottom of the left path, then go back up, and return down the RIGHT path. The first chest on this path is the second Mystile. At the bottom of the crater, meet up with your party and talk to anyone who didn't make the full trip with you. Tifa will hand over the third Mystile. 99 MEGALIXERS Yes, you too can have a full stock of Megalixers, WITHOUT the W-Item trick, and relatively easily, too. What you need is a turbo controller, an assload of gil, and a LOT of free time. Go to the Gold Saucer Wonder Square. In the first room, behind the GP exchange girl, is a fairly useless game called Wonder Grabber, or something similar. For 100 gil, this thing randomly dispenses Potions, 1 or 3 GP, or, if you're really lucky, nothing. Why would you waste your time with such a device? Because it also drops Megalixers every once in a while. What you do is set Cloud up in front of the thing. Now, rig your controller in such a way that the Confirm button fires continuously, and Up on the D-pad is held down. Put the controller down, shut off the TV, and go do something else for a LOOOONNNNGGGG time. It takes about eight hours for this sucker to eat 200,000 gil, but when you come back, you should have between 15 and 30 more Megalixers than you started with. With a million or so gil and a couple of days to spare, you'll have 99 Megalixers with pretty much zero work. THE WEAPONS If you're going to take on the two American Weapons, Emerald and Ruby, you need to do a lot of prep work first. You will need all three Mystiles (which means you must explore the North Crater before doing this), Omnislash, Highwind (if you want to use Cid, and you should), two level 2 Double Cuts, and a level 1 Slash-All, 99 Megalixers, and the Enemy Skills Big Guard, White Wind, Angel Whisper, and Bad Breath. Next, choose the party you want to face them with. Cloud is a no brainer; Yuffie and Cid are probably the best backup, but Barret or Tifa could handle the task. AVOID Red XIII and Vincent at all costs, and Cait Sith is utterly useless to begin with, so why would you even consider him? You want a party with multi hitting Limits, so set Yuffie to Limit Level 3 for Doom of the Living, or Barret to Limit Level 4 for Catastrophie. Once you've chosen your victims... Er, party... You have to beef them up. This means Level 99 (for HP) and maxed stats. The levels are easy- evrything gives you EXP., but the BEST place to do it is in the Northern Crater. Head down the left-up path, to an area with lots of water and yellow rocks, and look for a fight. It takes patience, but you're looking for two enemies in particular: Master Tonberry (looks like a turtle wearing a robe, with a star over its head), and Magic Pot (looks like... a pot?) When fighting the Mater Tonberry, STEAL from it for an Elixer, then kill it for 6000 EXP. When you come across a Magic Pot, you have to feed it an Elixer before you can damage it (they often appear in pairs, so a W-Item materia is a big help), then take it out for 8000 EXP. (each!) They're also worth 1000 AP each, resulting in a gain of 6000 AP for a fight with two of them and triple growth weapons. Another enemy to look out for is Mover. It looks like a little red bouncy ball, always appears in groups of three, and is worth 800 AP. A piece. That's 2400 AP per battle BEFRORE growth bonuses. Unfortunately, they aren't worth ANY EXP. Once your levels are peaked, head back down to the Crashed Gelinka (if you get your levels up first, this part goes faster). Give Yuffie the Conformer and a Morph materia. Now, this is the ONLY place in this walkthrough I'll allow a non- command type materia. In the hallway where the Turks appeared, and ONLY in that hall, you may equip Yuffie with the Mega-All for the sake of saving time. This is purely optional, so for a 'pure' Command Only game, you don't have to do it. Morph the enemis in the Gelinka for each of the different types of Sources. You can also visit the Ruined Reactor near Gongaga first; Near the reactor, you will encounter only one type of enemy, Heavy Tank, which Morphs into Power Source. This way, you can maximize your Strength first and reduce battle times further in the Gelinka. Make sure you boost EVERY stat on ALL three characters to 255. DO NOT factor in the bonuses caused by weapons, armor and accessories. You HAVE to be able to survive or dodge the Weapons' attacks, and it is IMPERATIVE that all of your characters can consistently cause maximum damage with ANY weapon; You cannot rely on Ultimate Weapons because their damage is related to their charcters- Cloud's Ultima Weapon deals damage based on Cloud's current HP, and will cause less damage as his HP falls. You should also be packing 99 EACH of the following items. In the interest of saving you time, you ARE allowed to use the W-Item cheat for this. The items are: Elixer Megalixer Turbo Ether X-Potion Caldron (you get one from the 4th course on the Gold Saucer Submarine game) Dazers (dropped by Bad Raps in the sunken Gelinka) At least ONE Ink item Once you complete this daunting and time consuming task, you should be set to take on the Weapons. I suggest going after Emerald first, as the Master Command (for Mime) will make Ruby a little easier. BOSS:EMERALD WEAPON Before going into battle, go into the Config. menu and set the ATB to WAIT. Set the Battle Speed as SLOW as possible. Get your Limits full on everyone, and equip them all with Mystiles, and Enemy Skill materias. Equip REGULAR weapons, NOT Ultimates (except Conformer). To avoid rearranging a lot of materia, Cloud's Enhance Sword has 8 slots, as does Cid's Dragoon Lance. Barret does not have an 8 slot regular weapon. Set Cloud's, Cid's and/or Barret's Limit to level 4, Yuffie's to level 3. Put Level 2 Double Cuts on two of them, and a Level 1 Slash-All (NOT Flash) on the other. Hyper all of your guys. When you're ready, ram Emerald with the submarine and prepare for the fight of your life. Use Big Guard on your first turn, then Bad Breath (Emerald can be Slowed). Use all of your Limits next. Eventually, Emerald will use Revenge Stomp. Use a Megalixer to recover; If you're using W-Item, toss back a Megalixer, then throw a Stardust or Fire Veil at Emerald. Use Angel Whisper if you lose anybody. Abuse Limits as soon as you get them. When you're done (I did it in six minutes, three seconds, according to the timer), you get an Earth Harp. Take it to Kalm and trade it for a set of Master Materia, of which you only want one. BOSS:RUBY WEAPON Prepare for battle by equipping your best fighter with a Mystile, his or her Ultimate Weapon (unless you use Cid, whose Venus Gospel deals damage based on Cid's current MP), the Master Command you got from beating Emerald Weapon, a W-Item, and, most importantly, a Ribbon and an Enemy Skill materia with Pandora's Box learned. Enter a random battle and kill off the other two party members, and get your Limit bar full again. At the outset of the battle, Ruby will bury his claws. Use W-Item to throw a Dazers at his LEFT claw (it will be on the RIGHT side of your TV screen), and one at Ruby himself. DO IT IN THIS ORDER!!! So far as I can tell, Ruby's claws cannot attack while Ruby is paralyzed. Paralyzing the claw first is like an early warning system. His claw will start moving first, but will be unable to attack. This is your cue to Dazers the claw and Ruby again. If timed right, Ruby will actually begin moving BETWEEN the first and second Dazers, meaning the item WILL hit him, but it will technically still be your turn, so he will be unable to act. On your next turn, toss a Caldron or a Dazers at the other claw, and an Ink at Ruby. Put up Big Guard next. By now, the Dazers should be wearing off. Throw another set at the claw and Ruby, then use Pandora's Box on Ruby's body. You should be able to cast it twice before you need to re-Dazers him. Continue to Dazers the claw and Ruby (only worry about the one claw) and cast Pandora's Box. When you run short on MP (or HP if your timing's off), Dazers Ruby and his warning claw, then use an Elixer to heal. When you do this, DO NOT try to continue the battle. Use your Elixer, then WAIT until his early warning claw begins to move. Immediately Dazers it and Ruby agan, then return to the Pandora's Box-Dazers cycle. Eventually, Ruby will pull up his claws. Dazers him again, and heal if you have to. On your next turn, use your Limit, then Mime it. You should be able to Mime it a second time before the Dazers wear off. Paralyze Ruby again, and go back to Pandora's Box. Use this cycle until he reburys his claws, then start the strategy all over again. If Ruby pulls up his claws and you don't have a Limit, just Dazers and Pandora's Box him. You see, Ruby Weapon has atrocious defense. Crazy defense. You'll deal about one-third damage with any attack... Except Pandora's Box, which ignores defense. If you run low on Dazers (and you will), use the W-Item cheat to get some more. This is a long ass fight, and you don't want to lose after investing a half hour or more into it. For winning you get a Desert Rose, which you can trade for a Gold Chocobo. You still have to rent a stable for it, though... *********************************** ix ******************************* THANKS Where I show a little humility... Squaresoft- For the finest installment of the best game series EVER. Jim at Mad Dog Tattoos, in Almont, Mi.- For the FF7 logo tattoo on my wrist. Squaresoft (again)- For THE perfect game. ************************************ x ******************************** LEGAL STUFF Final Fantasy and all related terms and characters are copyright Squaresoft. Final Fantasy VII copyright Squaresoft 1997. Bradygames Official Guide is property of Brady Publishing (though no actual content of said guide was used, I did mention it way back in the introduction, and there's no reason to get myself sued.) This guide is copyright Ryan Goss (Acid Angel 13), 2005. If you want to post this guide or parts of it, send me an e-mail for permission first. It'll only take a minute, and it's not like I'll say no. Well, I might... Also note that if you choose to do something stupid, like steal MY property (this guide), keep in mind I have this on my hard drive, as well as the handwritten original, and I WILL make your life hell over it. This guide may be distributed freely, in whole or in part, by any means. Any portion of this guide taken from the complete version must be credited to me. This guide is for FREE distribution, which means nobody (except me) may get any amount of money for it. Unless you sell it to your little brother for a penny- I guess I'd let that pass. To contact me for whatever reason, e-mail me at: Angel_Hammer13@Hotmail.com Use Final Fantasy 7 Command as the subject, or I'll toss it along with all the spam I get. Any corrections, revisions, additional strategy, or whatever, will be greatly appreciated and, if relevant, posted in further versions of this guide. What's more, I love getting e-mails about my work. If you send me a mail, even a nasty one, you WILL get a reply. If you don't I didn't get it. Check back with GameFAQs and look at the newest version of this guide to make sure you have my current address, and try again. *********************************** xi ******************************** VERSION HISTORY (or, Some Stuff You Probably Don't Care About) 9/14/05 Ver. 0.05-Decided to play FF7 again. Also decided I really wanted to contribute something for it. So I dreamed up this "challenge" 9/18/05 Ver. 0.80-Technically "beat" the game, as in killing Safer Sephiroth. The funniest thing happened in the "unlosable" fight afterward... Seph actually HIT me (I've NEVER seen his turn come up first), and it damn- near took me out (which would have been amusing in a peculiar, frustrating sort of way...) 9/29/05 Ver. 1.00-Finally took down the Weapons. It was the prep that took forever... 12/18/05 Ver. 1.50-Too long between updates, considering the volume of mail that fell on me over this guide. Added correction about Angel Whisper, reason for Ether theft in the Train Graveyard, and Enemy Skill section, which replaced the utterly pointless Character Evaluation section. AUTHORIZED SITES (or, People Who Didn't Rip This Off) www.gamefaqs.com is the ONLY site that will ever carry my work. If you find it anywhere else, it's stolen, and I'd like to know about it.