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    Fishing Guide by Ishamaelxx

    Version: 2.1 | Updated: 12/31/06 | Printable Version | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    Final Fantasy XII
    	
    ----------Fishing Guide--------
    
    By:  Ishamaelxx   (no_h@hotmail.com)
    
    This guide is written and compiled by Ishamaelxx.
    
    You may not copy or reproduce it under any circumstances except for personal,
    private use. It may not be placed on any web site or otherwise distributed
    publicly without advance written permission. Use of the guide on any other
    web site or as a part of any public display is strictly prohibited, and a
    violation of copyright. Let me know before you want to use it, as I would
    like to know where you plan to post it.
    
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
    So basically this is my first guide about anything, which means essentially 
    that it won’t be pretty. However, I’ve done my best to make it organized 
    and inclusive. This work stems from the multitude of questions that I’ve 
    seen on the message boards about various aspects of the fishing game. Since 
    Lu Shang’s badge, which is the ultimate reward for this side game, is required 
    to obtain the much sought after wyrmhero blade, I thought this may be a 
    well-received attempt.
    
    
    Version history:
    1.0 December 19, 2006 (basic outline of guide)
    1.5 December 20, 2006 (guide completed for the most part)
    2.0 December 20, 2006 (fixed major formatting errors)
    2.1 December 31, 2006 (error in King of Nebra command, and possible treasure
                           in bottle hunt pointed out and corrected)
    
    Future Updates:
    Plan to add command movement, potential commands, and perfect fishing rewards 
    with probabilities…eventually.
    
    Table of Contents: 
    (use search feature to look for part ending in ‘xx’ to jump to section)
    
    
    Availability (Availxx).............When side game becomes available
    
    Introduction (Introxx).............Things you should know before beginning
    
    Beginnings (Beginxx)...............Obtaining the first rod through upstream
    
    Bottles (Bottlexx).................The great bottle clue hunt
    
    Matamune (Mataxx)..................The great cursed rod
    
    Finale (Finxx).....................Landing the River Lord
    
    Thoughts and Mysteries (Thouxx)....Things I’m still pondering
    
    Credits (Credxx)...................Credits (duh!)
    
    
    
    ...............................................................................
                                      Availability
    ...............................................................................
    Availxx
    
         The fishing game itself becomes available after you visit Draklor 
    Laboratory. However, you must have done the Cactuar Family side quest as well. 
    It cannot be completed however, until you finish both the Patient in the Desert 
    side quest for the Barheim passage key, and defeat Gilgamesh.
    
    
    ...............................................................................
                                      Introduction
    ...............................................................................
    Introxx
    
          The fishing game is basically a test of controller knowledge, finger 
    dexterity, and reflexes. There are six opportunities to catch either a fish or 
    an empty bottle in each go. Quite simply, all you have to do is enter the 
    sequence of buttons that float across the screen either horizontally or 
    vertically. If you’re too slow, or make a mistake, the fish is lost. Also, 
    there are five different areas you can fish in, with the potential rewards 
    becoming greater for each one. These areas are as follows:
    
    1. Downstream
    2. Midstream
    3. Upstream
    4. Hidden Shoals
    5. Den of the River Lord
    
    The first three areas can be accessed immediately after reaching Balfonheim. 
    For the last two though, you will have to do some serious trekking about to 
    obtain the mysterious Matamune rod.
    
    ...............................................................................
    Beginnings
    ...............................................................................
    Beginxx
    
    
         To begin the game, speak with Ruksel on the west dock in South Bank 
    Village in Dalmasca Eastersand. He mentions that he wants to take up fishing, 
    but doesn’t have a rod. Teleport from their to Balfonheim and head to the area 
    with the Aerodome. Talk to the fishing enthusiast in this section twice, then 
    run down to the entrance of the Aerodome without entering. When you return to 
    the spot where the enthusiast was, they will be gone, and the Muramata rod 
    will be propped up against the wall where they were. Return to Ruksel and 
    speak to him again to initiate the game.
    
    Downstream	
    
         The only area available when you begin is the Downstream region. This 
    area is very easy with short, basic commands, so it’s a good opportunity to 
    get yourself familiarized with the aspects of the game, and you should have no 
    trouble getting perfects after a couple tries. Also, the commands only move 
    from side to side across the screen, so you don’t have to waste time looking 
    for where they’re going to appear. Multiple perfect scores are required to 
    unlock Midstream, but they don’t necessarily have to be consecutive.
    
    Midstream
    
         Midstream is a little tougher, as the shoulder buttons come into play 
    and the commands start to appear at the top or bottom of the screen as well. 
    Also, the commands are a bit longer, so you’ll have to be faster to get them 
    all. Once again, obtain enough perfect scores, and the next area will become 
    available. In this case, Upstream.
    
    Upstream
    
         Upstream is just a continuation of the previous two areas, with the 
    exception being that the commands are much more likely to be five buttons 
    instead of four. To reach the next area, perfect scores only play a role in 
    that they are required for you to obtain the Cactoid Compact. However, you 
    also have to be using the Matamune at this point, or you can fish forever 
    without getting it.
    
    ...............................................................................
                                       Bottles
    ...............................................................................
    Bottlexx
    
         Here’s where the workload starts to pick up. The first thing you need to
    do is make sure that you’ve completed the Battle on the Big Bridge Clan Hunt. 
    Defeating Gilgamesh is not only a challenging and rewarding experience in and 
    of itself, but also the key to unlocking the rest of the fishing game. I’ll 
    explain exactly why later, so for now, just go beat him, and make sure you 
    steal since it’s the only place you can get those wonderful Genji Gloves.
    
         Now then, after you’ve finished him off, you’ll notice that some of the 
    bottles you catch while fishing will be different colors. There are five 
    total, and when viewed in your key items menu, each displays a different 
    cryptic message for you to decode. 
    
    
    Blue Bottle
    	
    Clue:     Truth lies just beyond falsehood, CDZCKZMCRANZS
    
    Explanation:     Sounds like babble? Think of each letter as a lie, and the 
                     truth lies just one letter beyond…In other words, the next 
                     letter in the alphabet is the right one. Do this for each 
                     letter, and you end up with the clue DEADLANDS BOAT. Where 
                     is this you may ask. Well the answer to that should be 
                     obvious: Nabreus Deadlands. The specific area is a little 
                     harder to pin down, so I’ll share it as well. Look in the 
                     Echoes of the Past area in the southeast corner. There is 
                     a mostly sunken boat with a faint glow emanating from within. 
                     Examine this glow and the bottle shatters, netting you an 
                     X-Potion and a Wanly-limned message that says only 
                     “River…unde…o”.
    
    
    Green Bottle
    
    Clue:     Skip on stones to far banks shore, by skipping stones return once 
              more.	SSADLNIAKLADHAUETDNREA
    
    Explanation:     More gibberish? Not really. This is one of the easier clues 
                     to figure out. Simply start at the beginning and write down 
                     every other letter. When you reach the end of the line, go 
                     back through it backwards, still skipping every other letter, 
                     and the clue should come out nicely as 
                     SALIKA HUT NEAR DEADLANDS. The particular hut that you’re 
                     looking for is in the center of the Piebald Path in the 
                     Salikawood. Check the faint glow in the entrance and the 
                     bottle shatters, netting you a Green-hued message that says 
                     “Forest…rgro….w”.
    
    
    Red Bottle
    
    Clue:     Foothills rise in mountains’ shadow. NhIiQsTUrEe
    
    Explanation:     Again, a little thought should provide the answer on this one.
                     Simply separate the capitalized letters from the others and 
                     then it’s a simple word scramble. In case you suck at those, 
                     or simply can’t be bothered for the time, the answer is 
                     QUIET shrine. Now if you’ve really been exploring at all you 
                     should remember where all the different shrines where in the 
                     game...right? Well if you can’t, they were in the Mosphoran 
                     Highwaste, and the particular one that you’re looking for 
                     happens to be in the northwest corner of the Babbling Vale 
                     area. Again with the faint glow and exploding bottle. (It’s 
                     a wonder they never cut themselves with all this shrapnel 
                     flying about). Anyways, their non-cut luck holds and you 
                     receive a Holy Mote and a Vermillion Message, which reads 
                     “Fire…undb…h”.
    
    Yellow Bottle
    
    Clue:     Dragons stir among the eaters of the wind. 1 2 - - 5 - 7 - 9 -
    
    Explanation:     A bit more cryptic this time around, but I’m sure good ol’ 
                     Sherlock would have gotten it right away. Why you ask? Simple 
                     logic, of course! Where was the first place the you 
                     encountered dragon type enemies on a regular basis? Think 
                     about that one and you should come up with the same answer I 
                     did, which was Cerobi Steppe. Upon arriving there, it should 
                     become readily apparent what the “eaters of the wind” are 
                     (windmills...but you knew that...right?) Anyways, the rest of 
                     the clue simply tells you which windmills should match up, 
                     and by that I mean their status of on or off. If you choose 
                     to have #1 on, the obviously all others listed should be on, 
                     and the windmills represented by a ‘-’ should be off. Now if 
                     you haven’t touched the windmills to this point (and there was
                     no reason to beyond curiosity), then simply head to windmills 
                     #2, 3, 5, and 8. Switch their current status, whether on or 
                     off. When you fix the final one, the exploding thing happens 
                     again and you receive only an Auric Message reading, 
                     “Ash…ridge…e.” (of course the most annoying one doesn’t give 
                     you any other reward…it’s almost like the treasure chests of 
                     the game in that sense)
    
                     seraphfene emailed me and claims she recieved a Hi-Ether upon
                     completing the windmill puzzle. While I don't recall having 
                     ever recieved anything for it, it's possible that I just have
                     a bad memory.
    
    Black Bottle
    
    Clue:     Easy as a, b, c, so count yourself luck. 
              19-12-21-9-3-5-7-1-20-5-18-1-20-19
    
    Explanation:     It’s like those encoders you got in cereal boxes when you were
                     a kid…or at least like when I was a kid. Regardless of your 
                     age, write down the alphabet, and match the letters up with 
                     the numbers 1-26 (1 and A being the start of course…). 
                     Afterwards, just pick out the letters you need to end up with 
                     the clue SLUICE GATE RATS. These crazy guys are hanging out 
                     around the sluice gates, which are of course located in the 
                     Garamsythe Waterway located beneath Rabanastre. Look for the 
                     little critters scurrying around the south side of the room. 
                     Follow them to the hangout spot by a faint glow. Examine it 
                     for one last ballistics message, an Elixir, and an Onyx 
                     Message. This message reads, “Darkness…eton…e.”
    
    
    
    ...............................................................................
                                         Matamune
    ...............................................................................
    Mataxx
    
         Now you just have to put it all together! At this point you should have 
    five more messages with the following clues:
    
    River...unde...o
    Forest...rgro...w
    Ash...ridg...e
    Darkness...eton..e
    Fire...undb...h
    
         The first five words can be used to determine order, since they’re 
    complete, and ultimately unrelated to the location clue. Now a River flows 
    through the Forest, which catches Fire, leaving behind only Ash and Darkness
    ...at least that’s how I saw it. If someone has a better explanation, feel 
    free to email it to me. Now then, arranging the messages in that order to 
    connect the middle, then end portions of the clues leaves you with the 
    following: unde/rgro/undb/ridg/eton followed by o/w/h/e/e. This last part is 
    missing a letter, which makes it a little cryptic, but if you put it all 
    together, you should end up with the clue underground bridge to nowhe’r’e. Now 
    where have you seen a bridge underground the doesn’t really go anywhere? But 
    of course, Barheim Passage.  Head into Barheim, following the same path you 
    did to reach Zalera. When you reach the end of the Zeviah Span, go ahead into 
    West Annex, then stop immediately. If you look on your map there is a little 
    section of Zeviah Span that can only be reached by going into West Annex. So 
    hang a U-turn, but make sure you’re going into the area slightly to your left, 
    back on the main part of the bridge and not the part you just left. Now simply 
    approach the rubble at the far end and watch the magic happen. Now you know 
    why you had to beat Gilgamesh first don’t you?
    
    
    ...............................................................................
                                        Finale
    ...............................................................................
    Finxx
    
         With the Matamune safely in hand, head back to the Estersand and Ruksel. 
    Select the Upstream area and start fishing up a storm. After what sometimes 
    seemed like an eternity and innumerable perfects, you are finally rewarded 
    with the Cactoid Compact. This item allows you to access the Hidden Shoals 
    area, and you’re now only one step from the big one.
    
    Hidden Shoals
    
         The commands here aren’t all that different from those of upstream 
    (in fact, some are the same). What makes it more difficult in my opinion is 
    the appearance of an additional cactoid each time you input a command 
    correctly. These things will always be in the corner of your vision, and will 
    distract and annoy the crap out of you. Once you learn to ignore them though, 
    the area is pretty easy, and you simply have to keep getting perfects until 
    you receive the Cactoid Commendation. This bad boy opens up the Den of the 
    River Lord.
    
    Den of the River Lord
    
         This is it. The fish depicted in every drunken fishing story since the 
    beginning of time. The King of Nebra has an eight-button long command that is 
    difficult to complete when it appears side to side, and nearly impossible from 
    the top or bottom. In addition to this, you have to catch him nine times 
    before you can land him and reap your well-earned reward. However, the 
    upswing of this is that you don’t have to catch him in one trip, or even get 
    all nine in a row. Also, in my game his command has always been the only one 
    to appear until I get him for the ninth time, so at least I know what’s 
    coming. I’ll go ahead and post his command, since it’s better to just memorize 
    and practice putting it in quickly. When you finally do land him, you get the 
    Lu Shang’s Badge, the ultimate reward for this lengthy side quest.
    
    King of Nebra:
    
    R1, L2, Up, Square, R2, L1, X, Right
    
    
    ...............................................................................
                             Thoughts and Mysteries
    ...............................................................................
    Thouxx
    
         I’m not sure if it’s necessarily the number of perfects you get that 
    opens up a new area. It seems like it may be that you have to catch a certain 
    number of each type of fish. If this is true, then the perfect score theory 
    would lend itself weight simply because you catch more fish when you catch 
    them all...?
    
         Also, perhaps the key to getting the Cactoid Commendation isn’t perfect 
    scores, but getting a certain number of cactoids out there cheering for you. 
    Once again, a perfect score would only mean more cactoids, and thus reaching 
    said goal faster...?
    
    
    ...............................................................................
                                      Credits
    ...............................................................................
    Credxx
    
    Thanks to Square of course for another great game.
    
    Thanks to Brady Games for their guides, which help me when I’m having a 
    stupid moment. Also, this is where I got the commands and statistics for 
    each area.
    
    Thanks especially to Gamefaqs.com for the last 8 years. The help I’ve gotten 
    has been tremendous and unparalleled in it’s quality.
    
    Thanks to the reader, you’re the reason this is here.
    
    Thanks to my GM, for finally giving me a day off, so I could finish this.
    
    Thanks to seraphfene for pointing out the possibility of treasure during the
    yellow bottle puzzle.
    
    Thanks to jamescroc for pointing out my error in the King of Nebra command.
    
    And I suppose thanks to me, for all this typing.
    
    ================================================================
    Copyright © 2006 by Ishamaelxx
    All rights reserved.