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    Speed Guide by DryHumper2

    Updated: 04/12/07 | Printable Version | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

         I love speed challenges. I had always tried to get through RPG's
    somewhat quickly after playing through them once or twice, but until the FF9
    12-hour challenge I had no concept of a full blown, balls-to-the-wall,
    insane dash for the finish line. There's no reward for it in this game, but
    it's fun.
         In DQ8 the speed challenge is different than in Final Fantasies. It's
    impossible to do a super-low level challenge. You don't have 9,999 limit
    glove and 7,777 lucky 7 attacks. You don't have elixirs and phoenix downs to
    1-shot the undead. You don't have tents, immobilize, and nihopalona-remedies
    to cripple enemies 40 levels higher than you. Elemental weaknesses only add
    25% more damage than normal, instead of 100%. You're going to have to level.
         I doubt you plan on using this guide start-to-finish. You probably just
    checked in out of curiosity to see the general strategy and find out the end
    time. But if you haven't done a speed challenge in this game before I'd
    suggest you try it. DQ8 has a lot of replay value, and this is a really fun
    way to take advantage of that. I don't really expect anyone to read and
    follow every word of this, but you might want to check in and compare
    strategies once in a while. See what I'm doing that you're not, or vice
         Acknowledgements: Alex's guide was a good reference for item lists and
    locations. I didn't use RedScarlet's guide much, but I did pick up one
    EXTREMELY valuable piece of information that I would have never figured out
    myself: you can switch equipment to anything else that character has in
    their inventory and it doesn't cost you a turn. The alchemy faq and items
    list were invaluable. The Mechanics guide was useful also. Most of all, I'd
    like to thank me for putting this wonderful guide together, and for being so
    For questions or glowing reviews, email me at intellectualdementia@yahoo.com
    For criticism or flaming, email me at talktothehand@yahoo.com
    Skip to any section by searching for its number in parentheses (1)
    1. Ready, Set, Go
    2. Having Fun Yet?
    3. Underleveled, Then Not
    4. Minimalist or Insane?
    5. The Galactic Edge of Probability
    6. Glad You Made It
    7. You Let Her Pick up the Staff?
    8. Strange Meets Weird
    9. Are We There Yet?
    10. Are We There Yet?
    11. Goal Times
                                First Things First:
         *The guide is geared toward getting a star next displayed next to the
    shortest possible time in your adventure log. There are different ways to do
    speed challenges, but here I am only dealing with one. Using metal slimes
    to do this completely changes the way you play the game, but for getting the
    best possible time metal slimes are necessary. Next time I might play
    through for speed without killing any of them. That would be fun too, but
    it's not in the same league time-wise. Both strategies are fine, they're
    just different ways to keep this game fun as long as possible.
         *This guide is written for people who've played through the game a few
    times. I'm assuming you know your way around, so I'm not giving directions
    for any of the simpler areas, and I only mention storyline stuff to make fun
    of it. The playstyle is spartan, so the guide is too.
    *I did NOT include the dragovian trials. Mainly because I haven't done
    them. I saved them for a later replay so I've still got something new to look
    forward to. Will this guide ever include them? If anyone actually cares enough
    to ask, them I'll probably cover them. In other words, no.
         *I don't list par times as the guide goes along. I'd rather let you
    think that you're just super and are way ahead of me (and you are just
    super). The times that I arrived at different points in the game are listed at
    the end. Personally, I wouldn't do any comparisons until the end. It could be
    de-motivating if you're behind and make you lose interest. Anyway, I probably
    just shaved off a bunch of time to make me look better than you. I'm the kind
    of guy who would do that, then tell you about it.
         *This challenge would have been a lot easier if the game had included
    a pause button. If you've played any other game released since 1984 then
    you're familar with the feature. For whatever reason, it's not there and
    there's no way to stop the clock. Start and select don't do it, and taking
    the disc out just makes it crash. Time even passes while your disc is
    skipping. Welcome to hell.
         *King Trode will be quite impressed with the speed of your progress,
    when he's not insulting your cowardice. Check what he has to say every once
    in a while.
         *Anytime there's dialogue you need to be slamming triangle nonstop. The
    only time you should slow it down is when you know there's a question coming
    that you have to answer yes to.
         *You can't use seeds like you normally would. Saving each time you get
    a good result takes 30+ seconds, and that adds up after a couple dozen
    seeds. It might seems like a good deal, but when you're dedicating your time
    to leveling you'll be gaining a level about every 3-4 recorded minutes.
    Consider how much this adds to your total stats (all 4 characters getting
    large boosts to stats, life and mp)and seed-squeezing doesn't look so good.
    You can still maximize seeds though, but you can't save after each one.
    Every time you return after saving and have some other reason to open the menu
    screen, start out by using a couple seeds. When you get 2 good ones in a row
    continue on with the game until the next time you would naturally be saving.
         *Early in the game you fight every battle. A bit later, you run from
    everything in sight. Fighting regular monsters, even when you can take them
    out in one round, is very inefficient compared to leveling on liquid metal
    slimes. You might think that because you're in the battle and you can win it
    in one round you might as well finish it quickly and get a little exp. The
    only time you should do this is when you are having trouble running from
    enemies in the area AND you can kill them very quickly. Otherwise, being in
    the battle screen is a sunk cost and you should do everything you can to
    minimize it.
         *If I don't mention an item you probably shouldn't get it. I skipped
    the majority of "freebie" (time-eating) items lying around towns and
    dungeons. This includes a lot of seeds, some equipment, and all mini-medals.
    I turned out alright. You will too.
         *Don't save too often, and only save when your necessary course takes
    you close to a priest. If you have to enter a building to save it takes
    almost a full minute. Try to minimize it, and only save when there's
    something ahead than can have enough negative variation to justify the time
    spent saving. When you do save, take a well-earned break. Go to the
    bathroom. Kill something and eat it. Read ahead and plot your course.
         *You will have to do practice runs that you don't save sometimes.
    Reading ahead in the guide helps, but sometimes it's complicated, or you
    messed something up, or had bad luck running from random encounters. There
    are times you will just have to make a preliminary run to get a firm,
    efficient course set.
         *Padfoot stacks with holy water. Holy water works by doing a level
    check against potential attackers and screening out anything lower level. It
    CAN help when you're in areas where you're about the right level, because
    some attackers will be lower than the average level in the area, but it's
    not great. Padfoot works by raising the counter that counts down toward
    random encounters. So even though it's not perfect protection against weaker
    monsters, it helps no matter how high the enemies are, and it helps a lot.
    However, there seems to be a lag when you apply it, because you often get
    attacked shortly after casting it. I think the counter is only given the boost
    when it is initially set after you exit a fight. Or it might just be
    multiplying a depleted counter so the effect isn't as big until the counter is
    set to full. Anywho, holy water and padfoot both have their place, and
    sometimes it's best to combine them.
    *If a boss has defense that is odd-numbered, you can sap/helm split twice,
    then sap again several rounds later to drop defense by 1. This will fully
    refresh the duration. If defense is even, sapping again won't do anything.
                (1)   *****--------Ready, Set, Go--------*****   (1)
         It begins. Ignore the two barrels and kill the slimes. An argument and
    opening credits will follow. When you regain control of your character,
    immediately talk to Yangus and sprint off towards the tavern.
         The town is full of goodies, but you can't have them. There's a few
    exceptions though, far more than there will be later on. Right now, small
    amounts of defense and herbs will make a big difference, so some of them are
    worth getting. The middle barrel on the west side of the tavern has a
    MEDICINAL HERB you should grab. Run in and talk to Kalderasha. Following
    this, rocks are thrown, favors are asked, noses are picked. Head towards
    Kalderasha's, and grab the LEATHER SHIELD in the well. It's a good
    investment time-wise. Equip it to Yangus. Since you've got the menu open,
    take the opportunity to put Yangus in front. Grab the MEDICINAL HERB and 7
    GOLD COINS in the pots in Kalderasha's back room (you need both, trust me),
    ignoring the cabinets. We're not getting the seed of defense behind the
    church because we're too good for that.
         When you wake up in the inn, head upstairs and grab stuff (HOLY WATER,
    CHIMAERA WING, PLAIN CLOTHES, MEDICINAL HERB). I wouldnt open the cabinets
    closest to the chest or the bag farther from the door, they just have a
    cypress stick and antidotal herb. Now go sell your plain clothes and buy a
    leather shield for Hero. You can only afford this if you got everything
    mentioned above.
         This is one of the few parts in the game where it isn't wasteful to
    move around the world map, since you don't have whistle yet and you need to
    level up. We're taking advantage of this mobility by going for the SEED OF
    LIFE outside town, and giving it to Hero as soon as you have to open the menu
    to heal someone. If you get caught by the unique monster you deserve your fate.
    Next head for the BOXER SHORTS north of there. You want to keep running around
    till level 5 without returning to Farebury, so it won't hurt to grab the 83
    GOLD COINS by the red tree. However, don't do the cheese errand. Hero's skill
    points go toward spears. Yangus puts his first 19 into axes, then starts on
    fists. As soon as Hero hits level 5, warp to Farebury and take a power nap. Buy
    some herbs and give them to Yangus. Don't buy any equipment. You can beat
    Geyzer as you are (I believe in you). Fight the slime knight on the way in.
                     *DUNGEON*   Waterfall Cave   *DUNGEON*
         Don't get the map. The CHIMAERA WING and LEATHER HAT are worth picking
    up, and since the third chest is right there, grab the MEDICINAL HERB too.
    Hero wears the hat, as soon as you have to open the menu to heal again. Believe
    it or not, we're getting the COPPER SWORD even though it's about a minute round
    trip. You need to be doing the extra fight it will cost you, and it makes the
    Geyzer fight go faster. It will also sell for 135g in a bit, allowing you to
    afford something very important.
         Fight Geyzer as long as you're at level 6. As you probably know, Hero
    is immune to curses. He has to be the psycho this fight since Yangus would
    be constantly losing his tension to curse. Yangus should heal every time
    someone is less than full. If he doesn't, a short string of bad luck can make
    this fight go surprisingly bad for an opening boss. Evac out.
         Chimaera to Farebury. Sell your sword and monster coin and buy a
    boomerang. Go talk with Kalderasha before he and his daughter mysteriously
    dissapear back into a Dostoevsky novel, then head out the main gate for
    Alexandria. You've outgrown the monsters here, so use your holy water. Ignore
    the path and cut across the most direct route. Get the SLIME EARRINGS.
                (2)   *****--------Having Fun Yet?--------*****   (2)
         Try to kill Bangerz and Mash, and go save for the first time. If you
    can scrape up 550 gold go buy a stone axe, but you probably won't quite have
    it, even after selling all your non-essentials. Read ahead and memorize the
    game plan, then restart.
         Cross the bridge and grab the grey pot on the left for a HOLY WATER.
    Head to Jessica's house, and go straight to the room with the mousehole.
    Grab the WAYFARER'S CLOTHES in the far cabinet right in front of the door.
    The brown barrel on the right of the maid (her left) has a SEED OF MAGIC.
    Pick up the leftmost barrel that covers the mousehole for 18 GOLD COINS.
    Munchie does his thing, then you do yours, then Bangerz and Mash do theirs,
    then you do yours again, this time with Bangerz.
         You probably have to sleep at the inn to keep the shop open, because
    the sun is most likely going to drop as you cross the bridge in town. It
    sucks, but if you need the gold and clothes in Jessica's house to afford the
    axe then there's nothing you can do about it that wouldn't waste even more
    time, except selling the slime earrings as you come into town. Once you buy
    the axe give it a name. Then take a minute to get to know each other, because
    it's going to be in Yangus's inventory until the end of the game.
                  *DUNGEON*   Tower of Alexandria   *DUNGEON*
         On to the tower. Skip the map, and dont forget to unlock the door. Get
    the SCALE SHIELD, skip the seeds, and wash your hands of this place after
    the cut scene. Evac + chimaera.
         If you have 350g, buy the armor for Hero. You can get it in Prospect
    too. Head to the Albert's, where Jessica gets so angry at her mom that she
    decides to start dressing like a common whore.
         I skipped buffalo bill. Definitely fight the family doctor (psyche up),
    and grab the chest by him. Also get the chest right outside Prospect. As
    long as you're fighting all random encounters, you should be 9 before you go
    into town. You can beat Khalamari at this level, but it depends on the luck
    of the draw with your turn order when he uses flame breath the second time, and
    in the round following it. You're going to have to level anyway, but if you
    wait till Peregrin you'll be leveling Jessica too (experience is not divided
    among members, so you'll get 50% more aggregate experience with her). You can
    also start working on the reinforced boomerang and level on the more economic
    guys there. Make your choice and buy the scale armor and shield for Hero, then
    put him in front. Don't buy the kilt. Get the SEED OF WISDOM next to the inn.
    It's in the rightmost BROWN barrel thats closest to the front. Get the grey
    pots there too, there's something worth picking up in them too (forgot what)
    since it's right there. When you sleep in the inn, grab the HOLY WATER in the
    cabinet. You're done.  (1:45 arrival)
         Khalamari looks straight out of disney, till the fight starts and he
    lays you out flat with flame breath. He always seems to start with that, so
    have Hero defend, or heal himself pre-emptively and hope he goes second. I
    think it might be pre-set for him to use flame breath again in the 6th or
    7th round. He's obviously limited on how much he can use it, so it might be
    pre-determined when he uses it again. If you're having trouble beating him
    check into that. If you can predict it, you can beat it. Anywho, Yangus
    should go to town with helm splitter while Hero plays healer. If you're
    having trouble you can try to get lucky with hatchet man. Yangus will also
    have to use herbs sometimes. I wouldn't bother psyching up because you can
    easily end up in a position where Yangus is forced to defend or risk dying.
    This should go without saying, but anytime someone has iffy hp's they should
    defend while someone else heals them. And if their life is so low that even
    defense won't save them, then all party members who have a chance at going
    first should heal them, even though some of it will be superfluous.
         Once you beat him, get back on the ship immediately. In the room with
    all the barrels, only go for the large collection of them on the right. They
    make a triangle shape. Start at the outside of each edge till you get to the
    SEED on each side, and leave the ones still in the center. Ignore everything
    else but the chest with the BRONZE KNIFE.
            (3)   *****--------Underleveled, Then Not--------*****   (3)
         There's a homeless priest who hangs out on the docks waiting for young,
    adventurous boys. Perfect. Go talk to him, then we raid. You probably want
    to restart, familiarize which items the barrels are in, and maximize a
    couple seeds. Grab the grey pot behind the armor shop for a LEATHER KILT,
    then the CHIMAERA WING in front of the shop. The brown barrel farthest back
    at the guy with the locked chests has a SEED OF DEFENSE, and a pot behind
    the weapons guy has an OAKEN CLUB you can sell. Sell the kilt, club, and
    your boxer shorts, and buy chain mail, then a scale shield for Jessia. If
    you can afford it, get a pointy hat and a couple chimaera wings to make
    feathered caps out of your leather hats. In the only building in town, get
    the IRON NAIL and SEED OF MAGIC, then head out.
         Start the reinforced boomerang and keep your tail between your legs all
    the way to simpleton. Go straight to Angelo, then warp to maella and keep
    the story moving. Save as you leave Maella, restart, and maximize a couple
    seeds (yangus is going to need MP soon, so use those up on him if you havent
    already). The boomerang will finish as you exit the abbey. While you're
    equipping it to hero, take his leather hat off and re-equip the bandana. Now
    make a feathered cap. If you haven't already, put Yangus back in front.
    Fight all the reasonable battles on the way to the abbey (skip Joe), and
    give Jessica the templar's ring.
                     DUNGEON?   The Ruined Abbey   DUNGEON?
         Get the IRON NAIL. Go back and take the stairs from the main room
    instead of the long way down the ladder. You're done.
         The Boss is the tricky part here. Get Jessica to level 10 before the
    fight, and put her points into whips. Normally I wouldn't fight much on the
    way to a boss because it drains MP. But this boss isn't an extended fight,
    although he's a very dangerous one since you're underleveled and in ghetto
    gear. Everyone psyches first round. If he doesn't summon help, psyche the
    next two rounds and Hero will take out the backup in one throw while yangus
    helm splits the boss. He's 2/3 dead now. If he summons help the first round,
    all attack the zombie(Jessica with crack) and you'll take him out. Leave the
    skeleton, because he'll just resummon them if you kill it. Jessica should
    heal, Hero will need to help also. Keep life very high because he can use
    sizzle twice in a row, and it will flatten you if you aren't full. Anyone
    with less than 26 hp's needs to defend or they have a good chance of dying
    (it WILL happen if you give him a few chances). But sometimes you take an
    even bigger loss by sacrificing a turn to use for defense. Play it by ear.
    I lost Jessica the first time and had to restart. You don't want her to miss
    out on the 780 exp.
         Skip the two barrels outside Francisco's building. Get to work on the
    thief's key as soon as you can. Run from the fights on the way back to the
    abbey. Save as soon as the storyline BS is over. Now that your party's
    complete, we can level some more.
         Restart after the save and maximize a couple seeds. Now warp to
    Simpleton. I sold my boomerang and rosary to scrape up enough for the 1700g
    spear, but you can buy the cheaper one in Prospect. The boomerang isn't
    really a big loss at this point because you're not gonna need it for
    leveling or bosses anymore, and the rosary sucks. Anywho, head for Riverside
    and run from everything. Save at Riverside but don't sleep there or you'll
    have to watch Angelo's 10 minute cut scene. Time to powerlevel.
    (2:56 arrival
         How much time you want to save here is up to you. The basic idea is to
    go straight down to the metal slime valley and kill one as fast as possible,
    then warp back and save. This is the first time you're going to HAVE to be
    wasteful.  Sure you COULD save only when the very first fight was a slime
    and you managed to kill it, but we're hoping to finish this game before
    we're old men and robots have taken over the earth. And really you couldn't
    even call that perfection. Why not two slimes in the first fight, or three?
    And even then you're theoretically wasting time by going back and saving
    instead of hoping for another three slime victory in the next fight, and then
         A realistic number to aim for is one slime every 4 minutes, including
    the time it takes to get back and save it. It's not too hard. I got a
    2-slime victory a couple times, and one time i killed one in the very first
    fight. If you go 4 or 5 fights without killing one, or have bad luck
    running, it's time to reboot. Restarting and getting back there doesn't take
    very long. Maximize your seeds one at a time here. Angelo's points are going
    into swords by the way.
         The exp here is good, but you should still stop as early as possible. I
    quit at 17. If I'd known how easy it would be to get to the next leveling
    spot I would have stopped at 15.
           (4)   *****--------Minimalist or Insane?--------*****   (4)
         We're getting fewer and fewer items, because levels take over for
    equipment at this point, and things like chimaera wings and herbs have been
    replaced by spells. However there are still some good investments around.
    Before you leave for Ascantha, take Hero's scale shield off, equip him with
    the leather shield that should still be floating in his inventory, and make
    a snakeskin whip. Holy water and padfoot, and head out. Skip the cows, we're
    not making white shields. When you get into town buy a bunch of holy water,
    but keep at least 40g. We'll be picking up a whopping nothing around town.
    Now go rest until evening and get the story moving.
         Don't try to zoom to Riverside until you've exited town and seen the
    cut scene. You don't need to talk to Emma's grandmother. Go straight to the
    cave. Holy water and padfoot will this make an uneventful trip.
                    DUNGEON?!!?   Wisher's Peak   DUNGEON!?!?
    The WIZARD STAFF isn't a bad grab, since it sells decently and you can use
    it for a magma staff that'll save time in the evil jessica fight if you dont
    have enough money for rockbombs. Take the right path that slopes gradually up
    the mountain. If you're like me you haven't even bothered to get Angelo a
    shield yet, so pick up the TEMPLAR'S SHIELD to boost his defense by 14 (spell
    reduction to boot). It's out of the way, but you're gonna be getting a lot of
    mileage out of it. We're done.
         Get through the pretty little storyline here and head out of Ascantha.
    I wouldn't save yet. Holy water and padfoot again, although you'll still
    have to fight a few battles on the way to Pickham. If you think we're
    stopping at Morrie's then I've taught you nothing.
         Pickham is a good time to save. You can get the seed of strength or the
    magic water, but they'll each cost you 17 seconds, and you'll get along fine
    without them. I skipped them because I'm hauss and have mountainous biceps. But
    if you think you'd make a cute girl scout then go ahead and grab them. Head to
    Brain's place. I wouldn't even bother with the 26 gold coins in the barrel, or
    the seed of wisdom at Brain's (wisdom sucks with our set-up since it doesn't
    affect healing and Jessica attacks mainly with twin dragon lash). Run back to
    the bar, then to Mitts, then to Dave's, then zoom outside, then to Red's, then
    to the dungeon.
                  *DUNGEON*   Swordsman's Labryinth   *DUNGEON*
         Beat the dungeon.
         For the boss, use acceleratle for first-strike healing, and keep hp's
    above 85 so his desparate attack can't kill you. Jessica only had 83 life
    when I was there, but she's in the back row so she'll probably be okay. He only
    seemed to get desparate for men, if you know what I mean (I mean he's gay).
    Psyche up with everyone but Angelo and he goes down fast.
         Evac and run to Red's, then warp to Pickham and talk to Brain. Zoom to
    Prospect. Use holy water and keep up your padfoot. Save at Hilltop. Be a man
    and skip the slime crown. Your orichalcum will be going toward a sage's
    stone anyway. You may want to do a few runs to Trodain if you get attacked
    too much or have bad luck running. Don't go to the church along the way,
    don't get the 600 gold in the shoreline chest.
                     DUNGEON...   Castle Trodain   DUNGEON...
         Take the main stairs up. Skip the map as always. Go left when you enter
    and get the key. Yes, you heard me. We're actually picking something up. Now
    get the templar's sword and equip it.  I skipped the gold bracer on the
    wall, even though one character is short an accessory and won't be getting
    one before the dhoulmagus fight. It's very unlikely to make any difference.
    Cut back and take the door on the other side of the balcony, then take the
    stairs slightly northeast of there. Face the opposite face direction the
    stairs come up in, and take the narrow path along the bannister to the
    hallway with the statues. From here you should be know the fastest way even
    without a map. Once you've gotten near the library area you can either try
    to get a slime or deal with library storyline bs, unlock the door, and go
    save. If you can get a slime within about two minutes and forty seconds
    you've saved time. If not, you lost the gamble. I didn't gamble. You could
    always restart and make the whole run again from Hilltop until you get a
    slime along the way, but I'd save your patience. You're going to need it,
    because it's powerleveling time again.
        (5)   ****--------The Galactic Edge of Probability--------****   (5)
         Get comfortable. You're not leaving here until Angelo is within 4700 xp
    of level 30. Every four minutes (that the game knows about) you'll be up
    another level. Some of your characters will be getting two in the early
    fights. Same speech as before: you COULD only save each time you rolled and
    killed a slime in the first fight, but remember that robots are eventually
    going to take over the earth and the PS2 will probably be your new master.
    Be realistic, but be aware of one thing: these battlegroups seem to be
    pre-set, and here's the good news: a metal slime will show up in the first
    fight way out of proportion to their normal appearance rate. This might
    sound like convenient superstition, but you'll see what I mean. I did
    testing with higher level guys using sets of 25 battles. When slimes didn't
    show up early, they often wouldn't show up for the whole 25 battles. When I
    started leveling these guys, a metal slime would show up in the very first
    fight about 20-25% of the time. When they didn't, they would often pop up by
    the third or fourth fight. Probably half of the slimes i killed up to 24ish
    were in the first battle. Just remember that showing up and sticking around
    are very different things for these guys.
         Lightning thrust and hatchet man are your only real chances. Every once
    in a great while you might take one out with twin dragon and metal slash,
    but I wouldn't bother. I didn't use either attack. They take longer than
    just defending, and if the slime plans on sticking around long enough to go
    down to those it's pretty unlikely that Hero or Yangus won't get it first.
         At first, aim to get one every 4 recorded minutes. It may record as 3
    minutes if you get one in the first fight and the minute your timer started
    on was pretty fresh. The PRACTICAL theoretical limit here is about one every
    3:40 - 3:45. The fight itself usually takes about a minute, including
    whistling, killing the thing, levelup messages, skill point distribution and
    fade in/out. The round trip to evac, zoom to hilltop, save, and get back
    through the library is about 2:40, assuming you eat the usual fight on the way
    through the courtyard and get away on the first try (it always happens just
    after you pass the thorn arch). You can use holy water to avoid this fight once
    you're high enough, but even if you save with it on the effect still goes away
    when you restart. It takes practically as long to use holy water as it does to
    run, and it uses a resource you'll need to replace later with money and
    purchase time.
         You'll have a pretty easy time at first because of how often slimes pop
    up right away. At level 27 I hit a brick wall. They just stopped. I saw one
    slime in about an hour and a half. I don't know why this happened, but I'm
    sure it wasn't just bad luck that my slime encounter rate dropped to less
    than 1/10 of what it had been. So I killed Don Mole and came back. It got
    better after this, but the 20-25% rate on slimes showing up right away was
    gone. You might need to take a break too.
         Once you hit 24 you can't fail to run anymore. You can change your
    strategy if you want. Instead of just saving when you kill one in the first
    three or four battles, you can hope another shows up in the next 2:40, and
    cut out travel time. Even if your first doesn't show up till the 8th fight,
    you can still get under the 3:40 line if you have good luck shortly after.
    Just know what time you started at, and if you've killed two and King Trode
    says it's less than seven minutes later then go save (remember that evac,
    zoom, and saving takes over a minute, but the cycle ends before you start
    return travel time).
         Using the double kill strategy, I got my average time down to about
    3:20. I once had a save where it was only 6 minutes (the starting minute was
    probably fresh and the real time was probably about 6:40), and the next
    couple were seven minutes. I wouldn't try to get lucky past the second.
    Remember that a sequence of three low-probability occurences is exponentially
    less likely to happen than two. I'm sure someone's gonna get finicky over my
    math here, but you get the point. If you have a run that was worth saving but
    you decide to keep pushing your luck, you're probably just going to end up
    hating yourself when you try to get lightning to strike a third time and it
    doesn't happen.
    You can have as many as 15 non-slime fights and still get a decent time
    using this strategy, thanks to no-failure fleeing and the very quick load-in
    time after you run. If you get a slime that you'd be marginal about saving by
    itself, see if you can get another one to appear in the next 2:40. It takes
    12-13 seconds to flee (loading time varies a little), so 5 fights is just over
    a minute. When I was marginal about saving the second slime I'd keep trying,
    but I never was able to get a third to show up in time. Getting a long chain of
    slimes to show up every 2:40 isn't going to happen, so don't try.
         You can always hope for perfection, but everyone has limited patience.
    Keep in mind that the absolute theoretical limit for a person acting rationally
    is about a slime every 2:20, and this might even be impossible if battle groups
    aren't 100% random (In most RPG's they're not totally random). 2:20 would only
    happen if your first two fights were slimes and you killed them. Because any
    reasonable person would save this, doing any better than 2:20 is not only on
    the galactic edge of probability, but also insane. So don't feel bad about 4
    minute kills. It may seem like there's a lot of time to be made up here, but
    there really isn't all that much if you plan on finishing this challenge before
    the whole robots thing goes down. Try to take it easy, and remember these words
    of  wisdom: "F*ck  it." Speak them at the right time and they will save you a
    lot of frustration.
               (6)   *****--------Glad You Made It--------*****   (6)
         If you're reading this and Angelo is within 4700 exp of level 30, then
    you made it. Make sure it's night when you finish your last slime, and head
    straight into the moonshadow window. A barely-in-the-closet moon god
    teams up with a singing horse, and the results are just fantastic.
         Sail straight to Seaview (you have to kill the serpent). I didn't time
    this to find out, but it may be faster to sleep there and make it daytime.
    Sabrecats attack at night, and even your high-leveled holy water doesn't
    screen them out. Nothing attacks during the day. It would be pretty marginal
    either way, as long as you get away on the first try. Stack padfoot with
    holy water if you go at night. Head straight to the Chateau, but then back
    right out and run to Baccarat. Once there, you can get the SEED OF DEFENSE
    outside the church, although I skipped it (remember that I'm hardcore). If
    you didn't save at Seaview, which you shouldn't have if you didn't sleep
    there, then save now. If you saved there don't save now.
         Go to the inn and sleep (twice if you have to) till evening is
    refreshed. You can pick up the RUBY OF PROTECTION since it's right there,
    but i skipped it because of my huge biceps. You have to go upstairs and
    overhear the conversation or Golding's men won't be on the island. While
    there, you can pick up the DANCER'S COSTUME. I'm too hardcore for that, but if
    you want to pick it up I think it might look very pretty on your girlish figure.
         When you step out of the inn, zoom outside of Baccarat to move your
    ship. Now get on it. Go straight for the dark ruins. Do what you have to do,
    and don't do anything else. Don't even fantasize about the platinum armor.
    You're fighting Dhoulmagus wearing port prospect's finest.
    Getting a sabrecat is a little better than break-even in my opinion. I
    timed literally all of the world-map running you'll have to do afterwards, and
    I think it's just enough that double movement speed will save a bit more time
    than it costs you to get the thing, and you get a leaf.
         After you've discussed the magic mirror, warp to Chateau. Lie through
    your teeth to gain entry. Once you've hijacked the cat, go straight for the
    tree. My first time playing through I didn't notice the path connecting the
    main road (before you hit the intersection that heads south to Argonia) to
    the tree. It's a good thing to know about in this situation, because if you
    don't take that bridge the tree will be long gone by the time you get there.
    As things stand, it will be ready and waiting. I give you permission to pick
    up the YGGDRASIL LEAF lying on the ground.
         Warp back to the chateau, get your bell, and ask the cat-lover why he's
    wearing a skinned leopard. Now head for the mystical pond. Although you don't
    have to return to the sage to ask about the mirror, you DO have to see the cut
    scene when you meet him at the pond. If you don't, there will be no sea dragon
    under the arches later on. And, in a particularly dirty trick on
    Squaresoft's part, sea dragons will be temporarily barred from random
    encounters. Might as well stop by there now. You can get the SEED OF SKILL,
    but if you don't plan what level you're going to win the game at then it's
    probably not going to do anything worthwhile. It'll just give you a skill
    you'd be getting in another few minutes of powerleveling later on, and
    probably a crappy one. I skipped it. I DID pick up the 1500 GOLD COINS though,
    and immediately grew one breast.
         Warping back to Baccarat might be faster here, since you'll hit random
    encounters in the mystical spring area even with holy water and padfoot.
    It'll be close either way. Our destination is the Desert Chapel by the way.
         Take one step inside when you get there, then turn around and head for
    the DRAGON SCALE along the southern desert wall. I know that looks out of
    character for me, but you're going to be leveling in the graveyard later, so
    you need to make the run toward the chapel. Since the dragon whip is going
    to add 100 dmg per attack on a sapped Dhoulmagus, it'll save time by cutting
    out a couple rounds. You're also going to have it quite awhile after that.
    Warp to the chapel after you get the scale, then run to Argonia.
         Save when you get there if you're not 100% familar with the fastest way
    to get through this. Head for the king. Go back out the main door to the
    throne room and up the steps from the hall with the portraits. Go up the
    next set of steps and into the blue-tiled room. You know what to do from
    here. Also, get the cloak of evasion and give it to Angelo. I know you're
    dreaming about a dark robe, and it might happen later on. Not now. Pick up
    the usual nothing around town, and get that good-natured ball of fun Charmles
    on his way to the hunting grounds. Finally, some decent company.
         Get the light shield on the way there if you want. I didn't, because I
    don't have a labia.
            *DUNGEON*   I'm sorry, dungeons just don't deserve intros anymore.
         Get the scale on the right, and make the whip. You can access the pot
    from the grounds. Don't psyche up for the lizards. Psyching once only
    increases your damage by 1.7, so it's actually a loss. Psyching twice is
    break-even, but you stand to lose your tension to their warcry. Psyching
    three times is overkill. For the boss, sap use sap and helm splitter and
    he'll probably have no defense after the first round. No healing here, even
    Angelo psyches. You can kill this guy in the fourth round. Oomph Angelo, and
    miracle slash in the same round Hero multithrusts (oomphed miracle slash is
    stronger than oomphed falcon slash). They should both have 3 levels of
    tension. Jessica and Yangus attack that round too, and he drops. You might
    get shocked out of your tension, but he still dies very fast.
         Angelo will hit 30, and you learn multiheal. This spell is the main
    reason we leveled so high at mid-game, although improved holy water screening
    and compensating for crappy gear were also in the back of my mind. Multiheal
    will cut the dhoulmagus fight time in half, a very significant saving since the
    combined fights will go at least 20 minutes if you don't have the spell.
         Deal with the storyline, then head for the treasure room. Get the first
    chest on the left, but ignore the second (it's a medal). Get the other two
    and equip them. Goodbye hairband. Now head out the treasure room, listen to
    poindexter, and head up the stairs. Go in the room on the left and grab the
    ELFIN ELIXIR out of the corner cabinet. Take the other door out to the
    roof, and warp to Seaview. Go straight for the sea dragon, then warp to the
         Once in the ruins, take the left door. If your whip didn't finish
    before you entered, evac out after you flip the switch and it should finish
    before you enter again. Take the most direct route, except to get the
    SAINT'S ASHES. Holy water and padfoot as always, and it should be pretty
         Not too hard. Angelo's multiheal won't always go first, so don't let
    anyone get too low. Thin air, multithrust, twin dragon, even falcon slash if
    it's safe. Take the clones out first. Lightning thrust might be better than
    multithrust for taking out clones fast, but then again it might not. That's
    why I never use it. Don't psyche. Remember, attacking is just as powerful
    if you don't psyche at least three times, and it's crazy to psyche three
    times against an ice-waver. You can spare the MP to attack every turn. The
    second fight is just as easy. I'm used to doing this fight at 25. Even with
    the best gear, three out of four guys usually need to be healing then,
    sometimes four (even if you manufacture the beloved cheiron's bow). This was
    a nice change of pace. One round I ended up with full life, so I was able to
    attack with all four guys for almost 600 dmg in one round, no tension.
    I'm used to 100 per round. Levels > equipment. Just make sure to sap and
    helm split, then uneqip the axe and use knuckle sandwich. DON'T let Jessica
    pick up the staff after Dhoulmagus is dead. Congratulations, the end.
        (7)   *****--------You Let Her Pick Up the Staff?--------*****   (7)
         Head straight for Arcadia, and deal with the Dominico stuff. Don't get
    anything. You can save after Dominico. If you know Rydon's tower by heart, I
    wouldn't even save yet. Get the stone sword. Don't pick up the leather dress
    in the Kranbartle's. Jessica will be wearing the cloak of evasion soon. Buy
    5 rockbomb shards on the way out, and give them to Angelo. Holy water
    doesn't seem to help here, but you should use it once you get into Rydon's
    tower. I skipped the elfin elixir nearby. The TITAN'S BELT isn't a bad grab.
         Rydon's is a joke compared to how complicated it looks. If you don't
    know it perfectly, do a practice run. You can memorize the route easily.
    Skip the regrowth ring, get the CHEIRON'S BOW (make sure to head rightwards
    when you come up the ladder that leads to Rydon, going left takes longer).
    Zoom straight to Alexandria from Rydon's (don't evac first) and holy water.
    Save before the Evil Jessica fight. If she uses kasnooze and shadow-summon
    too much you can lose a lot of time.
                               -----Evil Jessica-----
          Use helm split, then knuckle sandwich if you get her defense down
    twice. Don't kabuff. It's slow, unnecessary, and costs you a falcon slash.
    Plus you only have like 3 defense to multiply. Angelo should rockbomb when
    she summons. Usually he won't need to be healing after a summon round since
    she lost one of her direct damage turns. Rockbomb should take out 2 or even
    all 3 before they get to waste any of your time, and multithrust will finish
    the remainder. Once her defense is down all the way, knuckle and multi will
    be doing 250-300 per round if there's no shadows, and when it's safe you can
    add falcon for another 110ish. Psyche has no place here. You'll either lose
    it to kasnooze or have to blow it early to reapply helm splitter or to
    multithrust some potential rockbomb survivors. Restart if she summons or
    kasnoozes too much, or if helm splitter fails 5 times in a row like it did
    for me.
         Deal with the storyline BS once she goes down. Go straight for
    Dominico's, and you can pick up the LESSER PANACEA and HOLY WATER in the
    middle barrels, now that they're a little less out of your way (I didn't,
    biceps). Talk to Dominico in the dining room. David dies, Dominico falls to
    the ground and weeps, Yangus kicks him in the head, and you warp to
    Baccarat. Go straight for the mansion, and open up the dragon graveyard.
    Warp to Desert chapel and save. Try to guess what happens next.
         This time we're only getting a few fights, but they're going to be very
    good ones. I wasn't sure if all the invested time to run to the chapel and
    open the graveyard was going to pay off, since you can level on the very
    consistent metal slimes by Godbird's Eyrie once you can fly. Then, in my
    very first fight inside the graveyard, I got a metal king and two
    beelzebuzz. I netted 90k exp for three levels apiece. I'm actually kind of
    pissed about that, because now I can never complain about bad luck again. It
    can take a lot of restarting to get a beelzebuzz/king combo where the slime
    actually sticks around, but it's a massive payoff when this happens. Use
    acceleratle 3 times (maybe 4 when you're still at level 32). More is a waste
    of time. You have to kill at least half the enemies in the fight before
    they'll kerplunk, so get your agility first and kill a beelzebub when you're
    ready. Use holy water on the way back to the graveyard. It'll only save you
    one fight, but the load-in between fights is much slower here than in
         It can take a LONG time to get the right fight. It took me over 2 days
    to get my second 90k fight, probably 5 hours of playtime. And this after
    getting the perfect fight on my very first try. I don't understand probability.
    Once you hit 37 you can no longer fail to run, so you can just chain 2 slime
    fights if you're sick of waiting for the slime/fly combo. Remember, robots.
         Just get a few of these fights and you're ready to win the game. Holy
    water is back in prime form again, bosses won't take very long, and you're
    strong enough that crappy equipment is more a source of pride than a
    liability. You should have your level 10 weapon abilities too, maybe not yet
    for Jessica.
         Warp to Rydon's when you're ready and deal with the story. You have to
    talk to everyone in the room, including the dog, when you wake up at Marta's
    house. To get Maruk where we want him, frozen and dying in the herb grotto,
    you have to first talk to the guy down the hall from his room. Then go
    inside his room, open the back door, and take a step into the back room.
    Then you have to talk to the guy in the hallway again. Then go the back way
    into the item shop and talk to that guy. This is all necessary or Maruk
    won't be there.
         Holy water and padfoot work decently in the cave. The ICICLE DIRK costs
    about 9 seconds and sells for over 4,000, so I picked it up. I'm doing extra
    dumbbell curls to make up for it.
         Kill wolves, kill more wolves, and warp to Trodain when you're ready
    for the Pirate Cove (Cave). It's faster to save at Orkutsk after you warp
    back with Maruk, it's a shorter restart if you save at Hilltop after you get
    the ultimate key.
    A sobbing russian eskimo whose mother was just killed by a flying dog
    seems like the perfect place to start our next chapter.
             (8)   *****--------Strange Meets Weird--------*****   (8)
         The Pirate Cave (Cove) is simple if you skip everything except the BONE
    SHIELD and HADES HELM when you're on your way to the drained area. Equip the
    shield right away.
                           -----Ol' Captain Crow-----
         P-p-p-pirate g-g-ghost!
         *HAAAACCCCK* (sorry, clearing my throat).
         *HACK* (that time I was calling the writer a hack).
    This guy doesn't use ice wave much because he's such a tension whore, but
    he'll use it if you try to psyche up. What a whore. Just use helm splitter and
    sap the first round, then twin dragon, knuckle, multithrust, and add falcon
    when you can. Oomph on Yangus is a good gamble in the second round, once he's
    switched to knuckle. You don't have to defend when he's fully psyched if you're
    near full life. Not defending will cost you 1 extra multiheal if he uses thin
    air, which he usually does at full tension. Yangus can survive a direct attack,
    thanks to his new shield. Anyone else will likely die. If they go before him
    that round you only lose 1 attack + the kazing it'll take to get them back,
    which is only replacing the fullheal you would be using on Yangus if he was
    attacked. Better than all 4 guys losing an attack to defend. You only do 70-75%
    damage to him when he's fully psyched, but it's still a lot. He'll drop pretty
    fast. Once he does, Red marches up and pulls his mask off. It was old man
    Rivers trying to scare the locals away from his meth lab, and he'd have gotten
    away with it if it weren't for you meddling little sh*ts.
         Warp to Simpleton and sail straight for the X. Stay in the pathway or
    it'll dissapear. HW/PF on the way to Empycchu. Get the SEED OF SKILL on the
    way to the chief's building, and talk to him. Here you pretty much have to
    sleep at the inn to refresh daytime and save. You can grab the FUR PONCHO in
    the cabinet, but you don't need it.
         Try as I might, I couldn't get the shadow to give me a direct path to
    the eye. It usually makes it about midday, so I tried grabbing the seed of
    skill by Red's to pass a little time and then going to the rock formation,
    hoping it always appeared at the same of day and I could catch it just
    before it left for the eye-spot. Nope. I tried just waiting at the eye-spot.
    No luck. I tried other stuff too, but never could get the eye to appear
    without playing a little run-around game first. I settled for just resetting
    day and following it from morning, probably took 45-55 seconds longer than a
    direct run to the eye would have. Oh well, it might be unavoidable. Grab the
    MAGICAL MACE on the way.
         Now that you're in the dark world, get the 7 crystals and head straight
    for the evil Ganondorf's fortress on Dark Mountain. What?
         Go to Dark Empycchu and straight for the chief. [PREMIUM MOLD?].
    Save, then HW/PF on the way to Empyrea.
         Empyrea just wants to test you, by killing you. The fastest way to kill
    her is to use lightning storm with Angelo in the first round and everyone
    else psych up three times before attacking (boulder, kafrizzle, and
    lightning storm). This drops her. However, she will almost never let you go
    three rounds of psyching without an ice wave. She basically never uses it
    when you're not psyching, but she uses it almost every round when there's
    tension to be murdered. It can work, but takes many restarts. It doesn't
    take much more time to just kill her with unpsyched attacks. Lightning storm
    does 160-185, and she has very little life. She hits hard but dies fast.
         After she drops, some shoddy storytelling explains why she tried to
    test you to death. Although she's sending you off to fight a legendary
    demon, she neglects to restore any of the life and MP that she just cost you.
    Why are all the pretty ones so dumb?
         Memorize the eyrie before you do a final run. The GOLD NUGGET and DEMON
    WHIP are both fast pick-ups with good payoffs.
         Nothing complicated here. You can psyche this fight, and you may find
    out that you're not even able to reach super high tension yet. You have to
    psyche to high tension a certain number of times throughout the game before
    this is available. Lightning storms will take out his backup before they can
    attack, and he won't resummon them for awhile. I had Jessica oomph Yangus
    the first round while he was helm splitting. You don't want his defense down
    to 0 too fast, or he'll recover before Jessica can psyche three times and
    oomph herself. She hits for almost 2,000 afterwards. So just use helm
    splitter, then switch to knuckle when his defense is gone. As long as
    there's no backup and Gemon has no defense, Hero should multi instead of
    lightning storm. It's a much faster attack, and does almost as much damage.
    This isn't a hard fight unless you get really unlucky. If someone gets
    dropped by a desparate attack, just kazing them. Hopefully won't happen, but
    you haven't lost much time if it does, especially if they already attacked
    that round.
    After a gigantic boom, Empyrea flies up and and wonders why her baby is a
    smoking egg fragment. Tell her you were just testing him. If humor doesn't seem
    appropriate to lighten her mood, it's because you're not using enough of it.
    Explain to her that you understand mistakes like this are inevitable, but you
    really don't think you should have to settle for scrambled eggs when you
    ordered them overeasy.
    As it turns out, the stillborn child still has a trick or two up his
    sleeve. With his mother's tearful blessing he joins the party. Hope renewed,
    they soar off into the bright, grey sky. It'd be a Kodak moment if there were
    any color.
         LAnd in Tryan Gully and stick the demon whip in the pot with a saint's
    ashes. Then head straight for the priest, then for Raya. On your way to the
    DARKTREE LEAF, grab the ELFIN ELIXIR and the SLIME CROWN. You have some
    stuff to sell (magical mace, hades helm, gold nugget, icicle dirk,
    assassin's dagger), and can afford the mirror armor (adds 75 def) for Hero
    if you want it. Don't worry too much about the reflect effect. It's rare,
    and it won't affect omniheal. It's also nice against Rhapthorne if it actually
    procs. Don't buy the gigant armor because Yangus will get the dark robe in a
    bit. You can even afford the thinking cap for Angelo
    if you sell most of your unneeded stuff.
         Rest at the inn. You just fought 2 bosses in a row, and you're about to
    fight another. If you saved enough mp you might be able to skip the inn,
    which means skipping another bimbo rant from Medea. You'll probably need to
    though, unless you wanna use that elfin elixir you just picked up on Angelo
    or Hero. Get the leaf, and grab the YGGDRASIL DEW in the far left barrel.
    Get the STAFF OF ANTIMAGIC too. Equip the slime crown when you open the menu
    to use the darktree leaf. If you haven't used the seeds of skill from empycchu
    and Gemon yet, use them both on Hero. Jessica should have the yggdrasil dew,
    Yangus should have an yggdrasil leaf. As soon as you step out of the treasure
    room, use the darktree leaf and fly.
         Sometimes Leopold will be around the middle of the map and lead you ALL
    the way down to the bottom before he'll fly toward Savella. Consider it a
    first offer and respectfully decline. He won't fly towards Savella until
    he's a fair ways away from it, so it's actually good if he starts near the
    bottom of the map. Don't continue unless he starts in a decent spot and you
    don't have any run-around BS before he locks in on his course to Savella.
                            -----Evil Sir Leopold-----
         Jessica oomphs Yangus first round, while Yangus uses splitter. Hero and
    Angelo should use lightning the first round since his defense is full. You
    can use acceleratle in the 2nd round to guarantee responsive healing, but I
    got away without it. Jessica's next move should be to oomph herself while
    Yangus keeps splitting till you get his defense twice. His defense is even,
    so you can't extend the duration with another splitter later on. Hero
    multithrusts while Angelo heals. Hero may have to omniheal a bit. Once his
    defense is down, lay into him with knuckle. Jessica should twin dragon as
    soon as she's oomphed. Psyching with Jessica and Yangus isn't great. It isn't
    just warcry, it's also that his defense recovers fast. So when you're
    psyched to 50 there's a decent chance he'll be recovered and you'll have to
    blow your tension on his full defense, or lose turns at full tension while
    the unspsyched defense-killer tries to get off another 2 saps/splits.
    Casting sap with JEssica kills her tension btw, though it will fully lower
    his defense, and tension doesn't work with knuckle anyway. Restart if he
    warcries a lot and you get knocked down too much.
    Now that we've fought a pirate ghost, sailed a magical path through solid
    cliffs, entered a colorless parallel universe, survived assassination by a
    15-foot bird, killed her child, ridden a baby's soul to catch a flying dog,
    exorcised the demon possessing it, and gone a full week without trying to nail
    Jessica... I think this chapter has pretty well delivered on the name, and we
    can move on.
              (9)   *****--------Are We There Yet?--------*****   (9)
         No. When you regain control, talk to every person in the cell and it
    will fade out. When you regain control again, talk to Rolo and Jessica for
    another fadeout. Then talk to Rolo by the door. After you get on the ship,
    zoom to Simpleton (you can't fly directly from your ship). Don't save yet,
    just fly directly to Neos. As usual, I ignored everything in town. The seed
    of skill will supposedly be on the Dark Citadel.
         Easy, easy, easy. No life, no desparate attacks, pissant damage from
    kafrizzle. Just play it like the Evil Leopold fight, except frolick and skip
    around a little. It's over fast.
         NOW go save. Don't rest at the inn or Medea will start yakking. You can
    fill up your life right before Rhapthorne.You're going to have to do one
    familiarizing run through the citadel, even though it'll be pretty simple
    for us. We're not picking up much. Everything in here will be transported to
    Neos. It's faster to pick up whatever you want there, where it's all nice
    and clustered for you.
         Take the most direct route. You'll get to the part where there's a
    very tiny hallway with a closed door that leads to a room and an open door
    leading towards the main building. Go in the room and get the DARK ROBE out
    of the cabinet. Equip it and put Yangus in front. A bit later you'll get a
    chest right along the way with a SAGE'S STONE. Give it to Jessica. Don't
    forget to fill up your life at the big stone tablet right in front of you
    when you descend into the circular room. Ignore the cute little lightning
    bug on the throne. Where the hell is Rhapthorne?
         Oh. Well how was I supposed to know?
    Despite his size, this fight takes awhile. His desparate attack/kaboom
    combo is always good for a kill, and he does consistent enough damage that one
    multiheal per round often won't cut it. Angelo and Hero open with lightning for
    200 each. Jessica should oomph Yangus while he splits. I didn't need
    acceleratle, so you shouldn't either. It would be nice to have, but you would
    have to recast it after each icewave, on top of at least one oomph. Too much
    slowdown for a speed challenge. Ideally, you'll get his defense down twice and
    hammer away with multithrust, oomphed twin dragon, and oomphed knuckle.
    Realistically, you won't. Not a whole lot of the time anyway. But enough that
    it's a good strategy. When you're pulling this off you'll be doing 800 per
    round, using multiheal at the same time. Also, all the attacks are fast
         The strategy using fast-animation attacks is better. A double lightning
    round from Hero and Angelo with Jessica using sage stone might look nice,
    since it requires no sapping or oomphing. But you're taking at least 20
    seconds for two attacks that only do 400 dmg. Twin Dragon and knuckle do
    over 600 in about 9 seconds once you've got him sapped. Because he's sapped,
    you can sub multi for a faster attack that does almost as much average
    damage as lightning. And Yangus will be doing more overall damage with
    oomphed splitter than he would be with boulder (same dmg on full defense,
    more after lowering it once), which is what you'd be using if you weren't
    following a sapping strategy. So even the buildup towards a full speed sap
    strategy isn't bad. The only real sacrifice is using Jessica to oomph. You
    lose a kafrizzle.
         You're probably gonna lose a guy once. Kazing, no big deal. Use JEssica
    to sage stone on top of Angelo's multiheal when you're in danger. Omni isn't
    great because it usually goes after Rhapthorne, and you need to keep your
    life high for those frequent desparate attacks. So if you're low enough to
    need omni, you're low enough that you probably need a sage + multi before
    Rhapthorne has gone, in order to be safe. That will greatly reduce the
    amount of life that omni restores. However, if he's fully sapped and Jessica
    is oomphed, it's better to risk an omni + multi and let her twin dragon,
    unless you're really badly hurt. Restart if you have a lot of bad luck
    lowering his defense or get killed more than a couple times by those
    desparate attack/group attack combos.
         Ruin doesn't deserve to have his name in between 5 dashes. He's got a
    lot of life, but he's just not a boss. Lower defense (splitter only) and
    psyche like mad, except for Yangus since knuckle doesn't work with tension.
    Even Angelo can falcon between fullheals. Yangus and Jessica need oomph.
    Let loose at 50 with Hero and Jessica and he'll go down.
         Don't forget to equip your scourge whip when you regain control. If you
    want to save immediately afterwards, do it at Maella. You don't have to
    enter a door to talk to the priest, so you'll skip load-in time, and he's
    right on the way to an orb. I know damn well that you know damn well where
    all the orbs are, so that's all I'm going to say about orbs. Well, except
    that you should fly to Alexandria tower from Farebury rather than zoom to
    Alexandria, because damn holy water won't stop monsters in the damn overworld
    now. Don't get anything else lying around the world. You can beat Rhapthorne as
    you are (I believe in you). Veja Du?
              (10)   *****--------Are We There Yet?--------*****   (10)
         Yes. One more hour and you will be free. Are you going to miss me after
    this? I sure as hell won't miss you. But anyway, good luck and thx for
    reading. Now without further ado...
                 *****---------------          ---------------*****
                   *****-----------              -----------*****
                     *****-------                  -------*****
                       *****---      Rhapthorne      ---*****
                     *****-------                  -------*****
                   *****-----------              -----------*****
                 *****---------------          ---------------*****
         I know what you're thinking: intimidate. It doesn't work. You're just
    going to have to use the godbird sceptre. You can usually manage two prayer
    rounds in a row every time that you're able to start a round from full
    health, as long as nothing too awful happens. You might even be able to
    sneak in 3 if he's going easy on you. If you're willing to risk some
    restarts, you can just use omni for healing rounds while everyone else
    defends (as long as theyre not too low). It's faster than waiting for the
    casts from sage/multi, and Hero usually goes after Rhapthorne. You can
    afford to go all-out with sage + multi + omni since your MP is restored
    after the first fight, but it takes too long. This part is easy anyway.
         Once the shield drops, follow the normal sap strategy. His defense
    seemed pretty easy to lower. I never failed four times in a row like I did
    on little Rhapthorne. When he meditates, his next attack is going to be
    magic burst. I don't think he can use another damaging attack in the same
    round. So if he meditates and the round ends, use omniheal (which usually
    goes after Rhap) and everyone else attacks, as long as they have 265+ hp. If
    anyone is lower, have them defend. You'll hopefully end the round with full
    life, while doing some damage to him. He'll also have to waste a turn
    recharging his MP. If Hero goes first, then at least everyone will have full
    life before it hits, and you can sage or multi in the next round.
         He really doesn't have that much life for a quasi-end guy. Jessica's
    new whip rips him apart at about 450 per round once you've got sap and
    oomph. However, because he uses sleep and icewave fairly often, it can take
    awhile before his defense is gone and you have Jessica oomphed. You're going
    to have to play this one several times to get it done quickly.
    (11) Goal Times
    These are the time I made note of along the way. If you beat them I don't want
    to hear about it.
    1:10 Arrival in Alexandria
    2:03 Arrival in Peregrin Quay
    3:34 Finished leveling at 17, saved at Riverside
    4:34 Arrival in Trodain castle
    6:00 Arrival in Baccarat
    6:45 Warped to the ruins after killing the sea dragon
    7:40 Regained control after Jessica goes AWOL
    Conspicuous gap here. I think i might have erased one.
    10:10 Saved in Tryan Gully
    10:51 Saved after beating Marcus
    11:30 Saved at Maella Abbey before collecting any orbs
    12:39 Done and saved