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    Power-Up Guide by LBL

    Version: 0.3 | Updated: 02/17/04 | Printable Version | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    BY: LBL
    Copyright 02/17/2004.
    Version 0.2: 01/16/2004
    Version 0.1: 02/17/2000.
    Version 0.3: Generally fixed most of the "characters chances for 
    getting [X] talent" information.  Dispelled a couple of myths in the 
    Miscellany section.  Working on getting a complete endings guide.
    Well, nearly four years after this FAQs first release, and over six 
    years since I first started playing this game on my trusty SNES, it 
    finally happened: Star Ocean 1 is available to play in English form at 
    last.  In ROM form that is, with the help of DeJap's translation patch. 
    RPG enthusiasts finally get a chance to play one of, if not the last, 
    great RPG from the golden days of the SNES era.
    A little history about Star Ocean: the same group of programmers who 
    made Tales of Phantasia developed this game. They were called Wolf Team 
    back when they made ToP, but afterwards they branched out on their own 
    and called themselves Tri-Ace.  If you've played Tales of Phantasia, 
    you will immediately recognize the numerous similarities between ToP 
    and Star Ocean like spell names (Ray, Tractor Beam, Extinction, etc.), 
    the sound test menu, and the inclusion of a challenging bonus dungeon. 
    Weighing at a hefty 48-megs, Star Ocean was the biggest RPG made for 
    the Super Famicom (other than ToP), featuring extensive voice acting 
    and a special decompression graphics chip (which was why it took so 
    long to emulate the game correctly).
    As an RPG, Star Ocean is very fun, but hardly up there with the best of 
    the best. The game is very short, with about a 15-20 hour run through 
    max (even less if you know what you're doing). The story is hardly 
    anything to write home about. The challenge in the game is definitely 
    lacking. The endings, like it's sequel, are not rewarding. And in 
    general, the game definitely feels like a rushed project, especially 
    towards the end and the numerous amounts of bugs associated with the 
    game. But despite all this, Star Ocean is extremely fun. The unique, 
    fast-paced battle system is very enjoyable. The charismatic and truly 
    interesting characters are quite memorable. The item creations are just 
    a blast to experiment with on your own. And being such a short game, 
    the replay value due to the need to try multiple character combinations 
    and acquire the multiple character endings is very high. This is one 
    RPG where a replay is actually frequently welcomed and done. But I'm 
    sure you already know all about this, so onto the guide.
    Star Ocean's cast is crammed with personality and charisma.  Here I'll 
    give my assessment on each character's battle usefulness. Also included 
    for each character is the likelihood each character has of starting off 
    with a certain talent based on my experience. You can hold up to 8 
    characters, but you must have Ratix, Milly, Iria, and Ronixis in your 
    party in every game.
    Well, as the main character in the game, it's not surprising that he's 
    the strongest character in battle.  He moves extremely fast, has a 
    powerful attack that has both range and speed, plus he has the best 
    Killer Technique in the game: 7-Star Twin Slash. His Dragon Rage Ougis 
    (especially the Blue Dragon Rage because no enemies can absorb ice 
    elemental) are extremely useful for hitting all enemies on the screen 
    instantly, stunning the enemies for the other characters rush in and to 
    kill. Since Ratix can't be removed from the party, he'll most likely 
    end up with the highest level of all your characters and become even 
    more powerful than he already is naturally. So since you're always 
    stuck with him, you might was well abuse his superior battle prowess. 
    If during battle you switch manual control to a character other than 
    Ratix, he will just stand there, as he has no AI being the main 
    Originality: ALWAYS
    Sense of Taste: AVERAGE
    Manual Dexterity: AVERAGE
    Design Sense: AVERAGE
    Writing Ability: AVERAGE
    Rhythmic Sense: AVERAGE
    Pitch Sense: NEVER
    Love of Animals: AVERAGE
    Sixth Sense: AVERAGE
    Blessing of Mana: NEVER
    1. Air Slash
    2. Spirit Blast
    3. 7-Star Twin Slash
    4. Dragon Blast
    5. Blue Dragon Rage
     _/ MILLY KILIET _/
    The game's only, and thus best, dedicated healing character.  In a 
    normal play through, Milly is invaluable in boss fights because of her 
    supreme healing and status curative spells. However, if you power up 
    your characters to obscene levels, Milly quickly becomes obsolete 
    because your strong characters are plowing through all enemies and 
    bosses without the threat of getting damage in return. Thus Milly's 
    healing is unnecessary at that point, and her presence takes up a spot 
    that could go to a more offensive character that can help finish 
    battles even more quickly. But in this guide, Milly's usefulness is 
    still in tact because she can still do her job as a healer, status 
    curer, and enemy-stunner in the Gabrielle fight.
    Originality: DIFFICULT
    Sense of Taste: AVERAGE
    Manual Dexterity: AVERAGE
    Design Sense: AVERAGE
    Writing Ability: AVERAGE
    Rhythmic Sense: AVERAGE
    Pitch Sense: AVERAGE
    Love of Animals: DIFFICULT
    Sixth Sense: DIFFICULT
    Blessing of Mana: ALWAYS
    A very good fighter if you rely on her Killer Techniques, a mediocre 
    fighter if you rely on her normal attacks.  Iria's got average speed in 
    battle, but she's got a painfully slow normal attack where she runs up 
    to the enemy, pauses, then does a somersault kick. Not too much of a 
    problem when fighting normal enemies, but when you're fighting the 
    Gabrielle, such a slow attack is almost suicide unless Gabby was 
    distracted by another fighter. Iria functions best with her projectile 
    Killer Techniques done in rapid succession such as her Chi Fung Fist 
    and/or her Dragon Fist Ougi, because her other Killer Techniques leave 
    her too vulnerable when missed or blocked. Both those two projectile 
    moves come out really fast and keep her at a safe distance from the 
    enemy. Later, when she gets her Sakura-Zhang and Sakura Flash Ougi 
    techs, she can afford to get closer to the enemy, as both those moves 
    protect her entire front (Sakura-Zhang is the better one though, 
    because the kick at the end of Sakura Flash can be blocked thus leaving 
    her potentially vulnerable).
    Originality: NEVER
    Sense of Taste: AVERAGE
    Manual Dexterity: AVERAGE
    Design Sense: GOOD
    Writing Ability: GOOD
    Rhythmic Sense: AVERAGE
    Pitch Sense: AVERAGE
    Love of Animals: DIFFICULT
    Sixth Sense: DIFFICULT
    Blessing of Mana: ALWAYS
    1. Chi Kung Fist
    2. Dragon Fist
    3. Sakura-Zhang
     _/ RONIXIS J. KENNY _/
    One of the game's two attack mages, except unlike the stereotype of 
    most RPG mages, Ronixis is pretty good at physical attacks too.  In 
    fact, Ronixis' normal attack is very good and spam-worthy. Once you 
    power up your characters to Level 100+, magic users generally tend to 
    lose their usefulness, as fighting characters will do more damage, more 
    quickly. But spamming on Ronixis' powerful bows allow him to continue 
    to do very respectable damage from a distance, stunning enemies from 
    long range so that other up-close fighters can go in for the kill. If 
    Joshua is in your party, Ronixis can pick up the Elven Bow, which is 
    very useful in the first early fights against the Gabrielle to fend off 
    the Hound-Forms surrounding her.  He's not too useful in the later 
    Gabrielle fights because at higher levels he'll tend to cast spells 
    which heal her instead of harming her.  Pray that he starts off with 
    the Originality talent; if you're the impatient-type, I'd doubt you'll 
    be willing to sit through the whole long scenario on the Federation 
    Space Ship after resetting to see what new talents he's gotten (frame-
    skip or not).
    Originality: AVERAGE
    Sense of Taste: NEVER
    Manual Dexterity: AVERAGE
    Design Sense: AVERAGE
    Writing Ability: AVERAGE
    Rhythmic Sense: AVERAGE
    Pitch Sense: AVERAGE
    Love of Animals: NEVER
    Sixth Sense: NEVER
    Blessing of Mana: ALWAYS
     _/ CIUS WARREN  _/
    I guess Cius could be compared to Dias of Star Ocean 2; really powerful 
    but slow in battle.  Cius' regular attack is indeed strong with 
    excellent range, but unfortunately it's painfully slow.  Not as slow as 
    Iria, but definitely not as fast as Ratix's either.  His running speed 
    isn't good either, and it takes a while for him to run to an enemy when 
    most other characters have already probably dispatched of the enemies 
    already. His Killer Techniques are strong, but not incredibly useful.  
    His best techniques are probably Flash Whirl or Dragon Whirl; though 
    Spirit Blast is pretty darn useful as a ghetto Iria-like Chi Kung Fist.  
    All his other techniques are quite slow coming out and leave him quite 
    vulnerable when missed or blocked. Surprisingly one of the less useful 
    fighter-type characters in the game, but he's still passable in battle 
    if you like using him. Keep resetting the game right before getting him 
    until he has the talent Originality, or else it'll be pretty hard to 
    try to develop it later in the game.
    Originality: DIFFICULT
    Sense of Taste: DIFFICULT
    Manual Dexterity: NEVER
    Design Sense: AVERAGE
    Writing Ability: AVERAGE
    Rhythmic Sense: GOOD
    Pitch Sense: AVERAGE
    Love of Animals: AVERAGE
    Sixth Sense: GOOD
    Blessing of Mana: NEVER
    1. Spirit Blast
    2. Flash Whirl
    3. Dragon Whirl
    Ashlay cannot be in the same party as Cius and vice versa.  So if you 
    want one, you gotta give up the other.  Ashlay isn't particularly 
    useful in my eyes.  He starts off with significantly more HP than your 
    other characters, but the tradeoff is he has the lowest MP in the game.  
    Contrary to Ian Kelley's FAQ, I don't think he starts off light years 
    ahead of the party, rather his HP boost makes him last just a little 
    longer in battle. In battle, he's pretty good in the beginning, but 
    unimpressive in the long run. He's got decent speed, and his normal 
    attack is pretty well ranged and fast. He starts with 3 Ougis, but 
    unfortunately doesn't ever gain a single useful Ougi Technique.  The 
    best reason to recruit Ashlay in your party is for Ratix to gain his 
    three Dragon Rage techs he otherwise wouldn't have learned if Ashlay 
    weren't in the party to give Ratix the Dragon Ougi. Ashlay will only 
    give Ratix the Dragon Ougi if his Approval Rating for him is high 
    enough though, so keep that in mind. 
    Originality: GOOD
    Sense of Taste: DIFFICULT
    Manual Dexterity: NEVER
    Design Sense: NEVER
    Writing Ability: GOOD
    Rhythmic Sense: AVERAGE
    Pitch Sense: AVERAGE
    Love of Animals: GOOD
    Sixth Sense: GOOD
    Blessing of Mana: NEVER
    1. Blaze Sword
    2. Dragon Blast
    3. 7-Star Twin Slash
     _/ FEAR MELL  _/
    "Second best fighter in the game." That's the title usually given to 
    her, but I beg to differ. Rather, I'd say she has the second best 
    normal attack in the game, right behind Ratix's attack, but as for her 
    overall battle effectiveness, she's good, not great. Her normal attack 
    is what really makes Fear shine because she tosses 2 boomerang-like 
    swords at her enemies that can cover a very big portion of the screen. 
    But what keeps Fear from true greatness is that her Killer Techniques, 
    for the most part suck. The more useful ones are very similar to her 
    normal attack, but allow for the boomerang-swords to hit on their 
    return path. However some weapons already have the innate ability to 
    hit on their return path, making a lot of Fear's Killer Techniques 
    unnecessary. Fear's best tech is a toss up between Aqua Spread and 
    Galaxy God Breath. GGB is stronger, but seems to be blocked more often. 
    Both are relatively slow on release compared to some of the other 
    fighters. Her Ougi techs are even a worse lot, being very weak in 
    attack power (Sylvan Shot) or leaving her very vulnerable (Unholy 
    Terror and Victory Terror). And the ultimate reason she does not 
    deserve all the praise she gets is that, strength-wise, she is pretty 
    weak. A lot of the stronger enemies in the game will block or take no 
    damage from her Killer Techniques or Ougis, leaving her only with her 
    normal attacks to rely on. And towards the end of the game, a lot of 
    the other characters already have very strong Killer Techniques or Ougi 
    techs that are much more abusable than Fear's normal attack. Still, let 
    me stress that Fear is still a good character, because her normal 
    attack is very useful throughout most of the game.
    Originality: GOOD
    Sense of Taste: AVERAGE
    Manual Dexterity: GOOD
    Design Sense: AVERAGE
    Writing Ability: AVERAGE
    Rhythmic Sense: AVERAGE
    Pitch Sense: AVERAGE
    Love of Animals: DIFFICULT
    Sixth Sense: GOOD
    Blessing of Mana: NEVER
    1. Aqua Spread
    2. Galaxy God Breath
     _/ JOSHUA JERAND  _/
    Joshua is the other attack mage of the game, who is also part healer.  
    Joshua, like most RPG magic users, has terrible attack power and 
    defense to make up for his magic wielding abilities.  You'd think with 
    wings he'd be able to move a little faster on the battlefield, but 
    unfortunately he kinda just floats leisurely towards where ever his 
    destination is. This fact makes Joshua as good as dead if Gabrielle has 
    her sights on him and is closing in towards his direction. For the 
    Gabrielle fight, Joshua is good for 1) Allowing Ronixis access the 
    Elven Bow, 2) Casting Earth Grave to stun Gabrielle, and 3) Casting 
    Heal All when desperate healing is needed. After you power everyone up 
    however, like the other two magic characters, Joshua can't do the big 
    amount damage as quickly as the fighter-characters can, so in boss 
    battles he pretty much is dead weight. But he's still useful in some 
    normal battles if you level up his Motor Mouth skill so that he can 
    semi-instantly (when Motor Mouth works) stun all enemies on the screen 
    with a hit-all spell when necessary (usually at the beginning of 
    Originality: NEVER
    Sense of Taste: DIFFICULT
    Manual Dexterity: AVERAGE
    Design Sense: GOOD
    Writing Ability: AVERAGE
    Rhythmic Sense: AVERAGE
    Pitch Sense: AVERAGE
    Love of Animals: NEVER
    Sixth Sense: DIFFICULT
    Blessing of Mana: ALWAYS
    Probably the most underrated character in the game. Most people dismiss 
    her as trash without ever knowing how really strong she is in battle. 
    Her conditions on joining is a bit strange:
      1. If either Ashlay or Joshua is in your party, Marvel will
         automatically join
      2. If Cius is in your party, Marvel will not join
      3. If neither any other characters have joined your party (no Ashlay,
         no Joshua, no Cius, no Fear), Marvel will only join if Ratix
         chooses not to drink
    If Joshua is in your party, you have the option to permanently remove 
    Marvel from your party, should you desire you needed her spot for 
    another character. Well, let me put it this way: If you are using 
    Marvel to actually run up to the enemy and attack them with her regular 
    attack; you are not using Marvel. Marvel has horrible running speed, 
    her normal attack is pathetically slow and short-ranged, and her 
    strength is not gonna rock your world either. But, Marvel is the best-
    long range fighter in the game, and easily the most abuseable character 
    you have. Two words solidify her supremacy in battle: Hail Orb. When 
    you level up her Link Combo skill enough, (and use the Link Combo Range 
    Restriction cheat), you can have Marvel doing four successive Hail Orbs 
    from anywhere on the screen. What makes Hail Orbx4 so abuseable is the 
    fact that she tosses them out extremely quickly and has basically no 
    recovery time afterwards; and the fact that no enemy is immune or will 
    absorb its ice-elemental damage. Which means if you want, you can 
    constantly have a stream of Hail Orbs pelt an enemy and keep it from 
    ever moving. Let me repeat: HAIL ORBx4 WILL KEEP AN ENEMY FROM EVER 
    MOVING. Her Ougi Techs are very good too, but they cannot be thrown out 
    in quick succession like Hail Orbs can because she pauses after doing 
    each one. However, her Seven Star Ougi and Southern Cross Ougi are 
    instant, so she can also instantly hit all enemies to stun them if 
    needed (Her Galaxy Ougi tech is also instant, but the animation is too 
    long for my tastes). So don't be in such a hurry to dismiss Marvel 
    before seeing how truly over-powering she can be.
    Originality: DIFFICULT
    Sense of Taste: AVERAGE
    Manual Dexterity: AVERAGE
    Design Sense: AVERAGE
    Writing Ability: AVERAGE
    Rhythmic Sense: AVERAGE
    Pitch Sense: AVERAGE
    Love of Animals: GOOD
    Sixth Sense: AVERAGE
    Blessing of Mana: ALWAYS
    1. Hail Orb
    2. Seven Star
    3. Southern Cross
     _/ TINEK ARUKENA  _/
    Tinek is an interesting character. You don't hear much buzz about him, 
    other than he's a nerdy, but cool-looking werewolf. In battle, he's 
    really fast, probably tied with Perisie as the two fastest characters 
    in the game. But what he has over her is that his normal attack has 
    much longer reach than hers. Even better, it is a really fast normal 
    attack too (moreso than I originally gave credit for). His normal 
    attack is very spammable like Ratix's. As for Killer Techniques, they 
    are all really fast, but they aren't really bringing down the house in 
    terms of impressiveness and usefulness since the other characters can 
    do what he does, earlier. Hurricane Staff is cheap, fast, and effective 
    most of the time. Hailstorm is nice too for filling the screen with 
    snowflake crap; but unfortunately it's blocked a little more than it 
    should be. Tinek's Sakura-Zhang, although sharing the same name as 
    Iria's, is actually nothing like hers and is a decent speed projectile. 
    IMO Sakura-Zhangx4 is probably his best tech combo because he can spam 
    on it and have a ghetto Iria-like Chi Kung Fistx4 attack (ghetto 
    because it's slightly slower and not as MP friendly). 7-Star Rumble is 
    good and fast too for distracting the enemy while a strong fighter like 
    Ratix or Iria can run in for the kill, but it is blockable too.  The 
    problem with Tinek is that most of his special attacks can be blocked 
    and most of his moves leave him vulnerable to be hit when they are 
    blocked.  Tinek definitely excels more spamming his normal attacks in 
    battle and using his great speed to get around quickly.
    Originality: GOOD
    Sense of Taste: ALWAYS
    Manual Dexterity: AVERAGE
    Design Sense: AVERAGE
    Writing Ability: NEVER
    Rhythmic Sense: AVERAGE
    Pitch Sense: AVERAGE
    Love of Animals: DIFFICULT
    Sixth Sense: GOOD
    Blessing of Mana: NEVER
    1. Hurricane Staff
    2. Hailstorm
    3. Sakura-Zhang
    4. 7-Star Rumble
     _/ PERISIE  _/
    Perisie is the epitome of cuteness, as she is sickeningly adorable. 
    Although when you recruit her, she starts off at a measly level 5, with 
    precious little equipment and a penchant for dying quickly in battle, 
    with some quick leveling fighting the Gabrielle (the reason for this 
    guide in the first place), Perisie quickly rises to one of the better 
    fighters in the game. In battle, she is lightning fast; she and Tinek 
    can RTSD (rush that shit down) in seconds because both have the fastest 
    running speeds in the game. In contrast, while Tinek has the better 
    normal attack (range + speed); Perisie has a more abuseable and 
    damaging Killer Technique to be discussed shortly. To be honeset 
    though, most of her Killer Techniques are laughably lame but 
    irresistibly cute. However she does have one specific Killer Technique 
    that redeems her completely in battle: Charming Pose. Charming Pose 
    sends a semi-heat-seeking heart balloon to every enemy on the screen. 
    These hearts do serious damage if they hit and the best part is they 
    are unblockable. Even better, if the hearts don't touch anything, they 
    linger around the screen for quite a while before finally disappearing. 
    Maxing out Perisie's Link Combo skill and using the Link Combo Range 
    Restriction cheat, Perisie can do Charming Posex4 from anywhere on the 
    screen and fill the entire battlefield with multiple damaging cute 
    crap. The only downside to Charming Pose is that there is noticeable 
    start-up before she actually tosses the hearts out, so the best time to 
    actually throw them out is when Perisie is far away at the beginning of 
    battles. Perisie also has Prismic Dance, which heals all allies for 
    about ~2500HP, not bad if Milly or Joshua is not around. However the 
    healing is not instant since you have to wait for the "healing 
    sparkles" to disappear before HP is actually restored, so don't rely on 
    it in a pinch. As for her Ougi techs, they won't be much use for you 
    because they are pretty much worthless. Perisie does have one more 
    important fact about her: recruiting her allows you the opportunity to 
    get the Bunny Whistle item, which allows you to travel on the 
    "overworld" map without facing random enemy encounters.
    Originality: AVERAGE
    Sense of Taste: AVERAGE
    Manual Dexterity: AVERAGE
    Design Sense: AVERAGE
    Writing Ability: NEVER
    Rhythmic Sense: ALWAYS
    Pitch Sense: ALWAYS
    Love of Animals: GOOD
    Sixth Sense: GOOD
    Blessing of Mana: NEVER
    1. Charming Pose
    2. Prismic Dance
    The basic concept of making your characters extremely powerful is 
    continually fighting Gabrielles summoned by the Clarinet 2 song, since 
    winning that battle will give you an incredible amount of experience 
    points that will quickly raise your characters' levels to obscene 
    heights. Then you can use the Skill Points gained through each level up 
    to max out your character's Skill Menu (and all the stat boosts that 
    come with it) and item creation powerful weapons.  You can start this 
    process as soon as you reach Ionis (the town you meet Marvel). Of 
    course, there are some preparations first. Also keep in mind that I am 
    writing this guide with the assumption that you have just reached 
    Ionis; so basically this guide is how to Power Up as soon as possible.
    1. It's important that you not spend any Skill Points until you reach 
    Ionis (except for the 1 SP necessary to for Dash).  Also try to 
    purchase all the skills you come across. The Battle Skill set 3 from 
    Astral are really expensive, so you can skip them, but try to purchase 
    all others you come across.
    2. Ratix must have won the C Rank in the Tatory Arena. The 7-Star Ougi, 
    as well as the Trumpet you win from the arena prizes are very 
    3. It's really helpful if you've gotten the Dwarven Sword from the
    secret cave on Mt. Metox and mined out some ores (Orihalcon and 
    Mithril especially), but not absolutely necessary.
    4. Make sure you've grabbed the Rainbow Diamond in the pirate hideout.
     _/ 1. AUTHORING _/
    Creating an author. Make sure someone in your party has the "Writing 
    Ability" talent and at least 200 skill points to spare.  Now use 191 of 
    those Skill Points to raise this character's Writing skill to level 10 
    proficiency, so that you have level 10 Authoring proficiency. Then use 
    the remaining 9 points to gain level 1 proficiency in the skills: 
    Sketching, Musical Notation, and Performance.  If you have 6SP 
    leftover, gain level 1 proficiency in the skills: Mineralogy, Forging, 
    and Workmanship.
    Purchase 20 Research Pens (400 V) at the Item Store in Ionis.  And try 
    to write 7 Books on the Skill Sketching ("Soul of the Artist" books). 
    After you've gotten 7 "Soul of the Artist" books, go on to the next 
     _/ 2. DUPLICATING _/
    Creating an artist. Now you'll need to get money to fund all the item 
    creations you're about to undergo. First you need someone in your party 
    with the "Design Sense" talent, preferably someone who also has 270 
    skill points to play with. Use all 7 "Soul of the Artist" books to on 
    this character with Design Sense in order to raise his/her Art item 
    creation proficiency to level 7. If this character has extra SP left 
    over, use it to gain further levels of Sketching proficiency (it takes 
    270SP to get to level 10 from level 7).
    Now purchase as many Magic Colors (2000 V) you can.  If you can only 
    afford small amount (less than 5), I'd suggest you save before you try 
    to item creation in case all of the Magic Colors fail, you can reset.  
    Now use the Item Creation "Art" and duplicate as many Trumpets you can 
    (you won the Trumpet in the lower levels of the battle arena). Sell all 
    Trumpet duplicates except one and repeat the process until you have 
    enough money to purchase the Violin in Edcart (the previous town).  
    Now you can repeat the duplication process with the Violin and gain as 
    much money as you want. Use some of this money to purchase all the 
    instruments you don't already have.  This Violin-duplication-reselling 
    process will be THE method of gaining obscene amounts of money for the 
    rest of the game.
     _/ 3. MUSIC _/
    Creating a musician. Now have your author character try to write 7 
    books in both Musical Notation ("Music Encyclopedia") and Performance 
    ("Music for Beginners"); 14 books total.  These books are difficult to 
    write successfully, so keep purchasing Research Pens and trying.
    Ideally, use all 14 of them on a character with the both the talents 
    "Rhythmic Sense" and "Pitch Sense". If none of your characters have 
    both "Rhythmic Sense" and "Pitch Sense" talents, then use it on a 
    character that at least has "Rhythmic Sense."  If none of your 
    characters are rhythmically inclined (unlikely), you will have to wait 
    until you get Perisie (who always starts with both musical talents) or 
    another new character to join. The reason Rhythmic Sense is more 
    important than Pitch Sense is that in order to successfully write songs 
    for your instruments, you need to have the Rhythmic Sense talent.
    Now, assuming you used the 14 books on someone who at least has the 
    "Rhythmic Sense" talent (although ideally you should use it on someone 
    with both Rhythmic Sense and Pitch Sense), have this character (your 
    musician) try to write the songs Clarinet 1, Clarinet 2, and Violin 2.  
    Keep purchasing Creator Pens until you have written all three of these 
    musical pieces.  And be patient, as writing songs is one of the more 
    difficult item creations.
    Finally, if your musician character has only Rhythmic Sense, but not 
    Pitch Sense, now is the time to try to get them to develop their Pitch 
    Sense talent. Refer to the "Gaining Talents" part further in the FAQ. 
    It's important that one character have both Rhythmic Sense and Pitch 
    Sense because song effects only work when the character playing the 
    instruments have both musical talents; and ultimately you will need to 
    be able to successfully play the Clarinet 2 song to summon Gabrielle. 
    Assuming you now do have a character with both Rhythmic Sense and Pitch 
    Sense, continue on to the next section.
    This part is optional; you don't have to do it but it really helps. 
    First step is to make sure Marvel has the talent "Originality."  She 
    probably didn't start off with it, but that's okay. It's quite easy to 
    develop it through the Customize item creation; refer to the "Gaining 
    Talents" section further in the FAQ if you need detailed instructions 
    on how to develop her Originality talent. Basically you will be 
    duplicating 20 Rainbow Diamonds, and attempting to customize them with 
    Marvel while the Violin 2 song is being played.
    Assuming Marvel now has the Originality talent, have your author 
    character to write 7 books on the skill Workmanship ("Dwarven 
    Techniques") and use all 7 of those books on Marvel.  Then have Marvel 
    use 50SP to raise the skills Esthetic Sense and Functionality to level 
    1. This should give Marvel an overall Customize item creation 
    proficiency of level 3.
    Have your artist character duplicate 20 Rainbow Diamonds from the one 
    you found in the Pirate Hideout event.  Save the game, and have Marvel 
    continually use the Customize item creation on the Rainbow Diamonds 
    until she can make a Holy Orb. Only customize 19 times (you don't want 
    to use up the last one), and if she failed all 19 times, reset and try 
    again.  Eventually Marvel should be able to successfully make the Holy 
    Orb, which, with 900 ATK power, will make Marvel a powerhouse, this 
    early in the game.  And no, it does not automatically keep her Stamina 
    at zero forever, so don't worry.
    Creating a weapon-smith. This part is also completely optional. If 
    you've gotten the Dwarven Sword in secret cave of Mt. Metox, then this 
    part isn't necessary. However most likely you probably haven't even 
    attempted the Mt. Metox caves yet. Basically, in this section you'll 
    want to try to forge powerful weapons from the Smithing item creation.
    Have your author character write 7 books on the skills: Mineralogy 
    ("Minerals Lexicon") and Forging ("All About Weapons"). Use all 14 
    books on a character any character (previously I thought you need 
    Originality to succeed at Smithing but you don't).  This character will 
    now be your weapon-smith. Although unlikely, if your weapon-smith 
    character has any SP left over, try to gain some more proficiency 
    levels in Mineralogy to increase his/her Smithing item creation level.
    Have your artist character, duplicate 20 Long Sword +1 you found from 
    the Astral Cave boss (if you never beat the Astral Cave boss and thus 
    don't have a Long Sword +1, you'll have to make a Long Sword +1 from a 
    regular Long Sword + Damascus). Duplicate 20 Meteorites you've found in 
    a treasure chest on the way to the town Tropp.
    Purchase 20 Smith Hammers and save the game.  Have your weapon-smith 
    character try to forge a "Duel Sword" from a Long Sword +1 and 
    Meteorite. This particular item creation is very difficult to pull off 
    successfully, but it will be very helpful if it works. Give the Duel 
    Sword to Ratix. Ashlay can also use one, but I'd try to make a Mithril 
    Sword (Long Sword +1 and Mithril) for him instead since he'll be able 
    to customize the Mithril Sword later.
    Similarly, if Cius is in you party, you can attempt to make a Silver 
    Sword for him using a Claymore +1 and Mithril.  First make the 
    Claymore +1 using a regular Claymore and Damascus, then attempt to 
    forge the Claymore +1 and Mithril to make the Silver Sword. Cius can 
    customize the Silver Sword later.
    If you want to be really anal, you can attempt to make a Metal Fang for 
    Iria by forging a Knuckle +1 and Rune Metal. First make the Knuckle +1 
    by combining a regular Knuckle or Hard Knuckle with Damascus. Then 
    forge the Knuckle +1 with Rune Metal to make the Metal Fang. Ronixis 
    can customize the Metal Fang later to get Iria's best weapon.
    Just remember NOT to use up your last mineral (especially the 
    Meteorite), since you'll want to keep at least 1 copy around for easy 
    duplication. All you really need is a strong weapon for Ratix.  I 
    suggest after you've gotten 1 Duel Sword for Ratix to continue on.
    First and foremost, you absolutely need the 7-Star Ougi for Ratix, 
    found by having him win Rank C of the Tatory Battle Arena. Then raise 
    Ratix's "Edarl Style" skill to at least level 5 (the higher, the better 
    Assign the Killer Technique "Twin Slash" in one of his technique slots 
    and save the game.  Have your musician play the Clarinet 1 song to 
    summon 4 Black Slimes.
    In battle, have Ratix continually use the "Twin Slash" technique until 
    he learns the Ougi tech "7-Star Twin Slash."  It might be helpful to 
    put the other 3 characters on a "Protect Yourself" strategy. That way, 
    Ratix can kill the Slimes himself for maximum Twin Slash use. The risk 
    of doing this is that the 3 characters doing nothing have a far greater 
    chance of being killed (the Black Slimes are usually much stronger than 
    you characters at this point), but then again, this increases Ratix's 
    chance of gaining the Ougi Tech through Anger Explosions. Hopefully 
    Ratix will gain his Ougi Tech soon. Rest at the inn after the battle, 
    save, and try again. 
    This is what all the preparation has been done for.  This *WILL* be the 
    most difficult battle of the game, since you'll be fighting a very 
    powerful boss that you aren't really supposed to be fighting this early 
    in the game. You should be at around level 30 for Ratix to have a 
    decent chance; fight Black Slimes from Clarinet 1 if you're not. 
    Definitely bring Marvel into this fight if you've powered her up with 
    the Holy Orb. Ronixis equipped with the Elven Bow is also useful. 
    Duplicate 20 Resurrection Bottles (or buy 20 at Van I Il if you've been 
    there), duplicate 20 Liqueur Bottles (or buy them at Van I Il), equip 
    Ratix with the 7-Star Twin Slash Ougi Tech, buy 20 Blackberries, save 
    the game, and pray for victory.  Have your musician character 
    (remember, both Rhythmic Sense and Pitch Sense talents are necessary) 
    play the Clarinet 2 song...
    Gabrielle: 32000 HP
    Hound-Form (x3): 3100 HP
    I've found the "Lower Square" formation with Ratix at position #1 to be 
    the most useful formation for this fight. Gabrielle is *VERY* strong 
    and she basically will kill you with one hit from either: 1) the long-
    range swing of her staff or 2) the force shield she puts around 
    herself.  To compound this problem, her hits often petrify her targets; 
    so often you have to cure BOTH death and petrifaction after she hits a 
    character.  She comes with 3 Hound-Forms which, although are nowhere 
    near as dangerous as Gabby, are still problematic since they too can do 
    lots of damage to your characters at this stage in the game and can 
    paralyze your characters as well. This battle relies heavily on your 
    ability to quickly and efficiently switch manual control between all 
    four of your characters at any given moment; and of course it relies on 
    some much-needed luck.
    The strategy for winning this battle is having Ratix continually use 
    7-Star Twin Slash on Gabrielle non-stop, hoping that she becomes and 
    stays dizzy from the first two swinging hits. Most likely, the only 
    damage you'll inflict on Gabby is from the two fireballs that shoot out 
    at the end of 7-Star Twin Slash. The problem is that since Ratix will 
    probably be the only one who can damage Gabby, if she kills him, you're 
    basically screwed... and there's MANY ways for her to kill Ratix.
    7-Star Twin Slash eats up a LOT of MP, so you have to be constantly 
    keeping an eye out for Ratix's MP total. You will need to be able to 
    comfortable switch manual control over to one character (more likely 
    two characters) that will have to be constantly supplying Ratix with 
    Blackberries to keep his MP up.  Those Hound-Forms aren't going 
    anywhere either, so another character will have to be dealing with them 
    too. Listed below are the strategies I would use for the following 
    characters:  (Keep in mind that I'm writing this from the perspective 
    of just getting to Ionis, so Tinek and Perisie won't be included 
    because they can't be acquired yet).
    - Ratix: Basically run up to Gabrielle and do repeated 7-Star Twin 
    Slash. Hope that the first two sword swings dizzies her and that you 
    avoid her force shield/staff swings during the jumping portion of 7-
    Star Twin Slash. Each fireball shot at the end of 7-Star Twin Slash 
    should be doing around 1000-1500 damage; more if Ratix gets an Anger 
    - Iria: Have her use Chi Kung Fist to get rid of the 3 Hound-Forms as 
    quickly as possible. Then either manually have Iria run up to and use 
    Chi Kung Fist on Gabrielle (it does only 100-200 damage, but more 
    importantly it puts Gabrielle in hit-stun animation) or have her supply 
    Blackberries or status recovery items when needed.
    - Cius: If you have him with the Silver Sword, have him physically 
    attack the Hound-Forms until they're gone. Then have him supply 
    Blackberries or recovery items when needed.
    - Ronixis: If you have him with the Elven Bow, have him physically 
    attack the Hound-Forms until they're gone. Then have him constantly 
    casting the spell "Earth Grave" at the Gabrielle (again, it causes only 
    around 200-500 damage, but it puts her in hit-stun animation which 
    allows Ratix's attacks to land). Use Blackberries or recovery items 
    when needed.
    - Ashlay: If you have him with the Mithril Sword, have him physically 
    attack the Hound-Forms until they're gone.  Then have him supply 
    Blackberries or recovery items when needed.
    - Marvel: If you have her with the Holy Orb, have her physically attack 
    the Hound-Forms until they're gone. Then have her supply Blackberries 
    or recovery items when needed.
    - Joshua: Have him constantly cast "Earth Grave" on Gabrielle. Use 
    Blackberries or recovery items/spells when needed.
    - Fear: Have her physically attack the Hound-Forms. Use Blackberries or 
    recovery items when needed.
    - Milly: Have her constantly cast "Press" on Gabrielle or use recovery 
    items/cast recovery spells when needed.
    PROBLEM #1: The most common problem.  Gabrielle kills/petrifies Ratix, 
    while the other characters are trying to revive/cure him, Gabby runs 
    over to them and kills them. Nothing much you can do about it.
    PROBLEM #2: Also very common. The Hound-Forms kill off a character, 
    Ratix (or another character) gets an Anger Explosion right next to 
    Gabrielle, she hits and kills him/her as he's/she's getting angry. 
    Nothing much you can do here either.
    PROBLEM #3: Gabrielle undizzies and hits Ratix, leading to Problem 
    #1/#2. You can actually do something to alleviate this problem. 
    Basically have other characters that can do damage to Gabrielle 
    constantly attack her. Attacks like Iria's Chi Kung Fist, Ronixis' and 
    Joshua's "Earth Grave" spell, Milly's "Press" spell, and later Marvel's 
    Hail Orb all do pitiful damage to Gabrielle, but they all cause her to 
    go into that very important hit-stun animation. If you constantly 
    barrage her with these attacks, she'll stay in this hit stun-animation 
    indefinitely, and thus Ratix and hit her without threat of retaliation.
    It will be quite hectic constantly switching between characters and 
    controlling them characters at once, but you will just have to learn to 
    deal with the constant pausing. You have to be making sure Ratix is 
    constantly doing 7-Star Twin Slashes while making sure you're using 
    every opportunity to have the other characters do damage to Gabrielle. 
    PROBLEM #4: Ratix runs out of MP from doing too many 7-Star Twin 
    Slashes. As Ratix is waiting to get his MP charged, Gabrielle kills the 
    whole lot of them. This can be solved as well by having characters not 
    participating in damaging Gabrielle continually supplying Ratix with 
    Blackberries. Don't let Ratix's MP fall below 50 (75 to be safe). 
    Remember, if Ratix runs out of MP, he'll just stand there in front of 
    Gabby as good as dead.
    If you do manage to beat Gabrielle, you'll gain a LOT of experience and 
    gain several levels. Plus, Gabby sometimes drops Extravagant Swords 
    (720 ATK for Ratix, Cius, Ashlay, or Fear) or Extravagant Armors (60 
    DEF, 30 EVD for Ratix, Cius, Ashlay, or Fear). Rest at an inn, save the 
    game, and repeat the process. Once you've gained a few more levels, 
    this battle becomes much easier due to the following:
    1. Equipping the Extravagant Swords on Ratix and the other characters 
    allow them to finish the Hound-Forms with ease.
    2. Equipping the Extravagant Armor greatly reduces damage from the 
    Hound-Forms, but Gabrielle can still kill in one hit...
    3. Link Combo (make sure you go back to Astral and buy it if you 
    haven't already) allows you to do Ratix's 7-Star Twin Slash and other 
    characters' important Killer Techniques (Iria's Chi Kung Fist and 
    Marvel's Hail Orb) in succession without the pain of having to do each 
    one manually.
    4. Marvel's Hail Orb(x2/x3/x4) and Iria's Chi Kung Fist(x2/x3/x4) done 
    constantly in Link Combo can keep Gabrielle in hit-stun animation 
    5. After Ratix gains up to around level 40, the first two hits of 7-
    Star Twin Slash will damage Gabrielle, making it easier to beat her. 
    Plus he'll have enough MP to finish the battle without fear of running 
    out of Blackberry supplements.
    One more tip for the future fights: Do not level up the battle skill 
    "Flip." This skill allows fighting-type characters to sometimes run 
    behind an enemy and attack them in their backs so that the enemy can't 
    block. In normal fights, this is mildly useful. However in the 
    Gabrielle fight, it is dangerously annoying since at any moment Ratix 
    might stop his 7-Star Twin Slash barrage to try to run behind 
    Gabrielle, or Iria might stop her Chi Kung Fist barrage to do the same 
    thing. However there is a very real threat that Gabby can put up a 
    force shield while someone is trying to run behind her, basically 
    killing or petrifying the character attempting the "Flip" Gabrielle. 
    Later, in fights versus those Eye-type monsters that can petrify you, 
    you can face a similar situation of being attacked while trying to run 
    behind them. And since you cannot turn off skills like in Star Ocean 2, 
    it's better just not to learn "Flip" at all.
    Once you get into a nice, comfortable routine of killing Gabrielle 
    quickly, you can use all the extra SP you gained in those numerous 
    level ups to max out your skills, item create even stronger items and 
    accessories (Dream Crowns from Crafting for instance), finish the 
    battle arena with everyone to gain good armor (Mythril Mesh and Star 
    Guards), and go on a Violin duplicating spree to purchase Tri-Emblems 
    in Sylvant for all your party members.
    Each time a new character joins your party; he/she is randomly given 
    certain talents. The number of talents can range anywhere from zero to 
    a maximum of four. If that character didn't join with a particular 
    talent you had in mind, you can reset the game, acquire that character 
    again, and he/she will have a brand new set of talents. The only thing 
    you have to be careful about a character joining as an NPC (non-
    playable character). Milly during the beginning of the game, and 
    Iria/Ronixis during the rest of the game's introduction will officially 
    join the party (you can see them in character slots in the menu), but 
    they join as NPCs. This means you cannot check their status screen to 
    find out what talents they have. More importantly, this means that if 
    you save the game during a time when an NPC is in your party, when you 
    finally can check their status screen to see their talents, it won't 
    change if you reset the game. This is because their talents have 
    already been decided the moment they joined you. For these special 
    cases (Milly, Iria, Ronixis), you have to save the game before those 
    characters join your party as an NPC, in order for you to be able to 
    reset their talents should you need to.
    This section just tells you where to save the game so that if you get a 
    character and don't like his/her talents, you can reset the game and 
    he/she'll have new talents. Since most of you are playing the game on 
    emulator and thus can frame-skip, I have removed the time information 
    which used to show approximately how long the processes of "reset to 
    gain new talents" took if you skipped all dialogue as quickly as 
    possible. Most of them are rather short now, but Milly's, Iria's, and 
    Ronixis' are still quite lengthy, frame-skip or not.
    1. RATIX
    - Point: Start of a new game
    - Notes: Always starts with "Originality." Never acquires "Pitch Sense" 
    or "Blessing of Mana." If you plan to Power Up early following this 
    guide, the best talents Ratix should start off with are "Rhythmic 
    Sense," "Writing Ability" or "Design Sense," and optionally "Sixth 
    Sense" (because it is such a bitch to learn).
    2. MILLY
    - Point: Start of a new game (NPC rule, can't check her talents until 
    after she wakes up Ratix in the middle of the night) 
    - Notes: Always starts with "Blessing of Mana."  One of two characters 
    (the other being Marvel) that can learn all 10 talents with relative 
    ease, but make sure she starts with Sixth Sense though because it is so 
    hard to learn.
    3. IRIA
    - Point: On Mt. Metox, right before she beams down 
    - Notes: Never acquires "Originality" or "Blessing of Mana." If you 
    plan to Power Up early following this guide, it will be helpful if Iria 
    starts off with "Writing Ability" or "Design Sense," whichever one 
    Ratix lacks. Most likely Ratix and Iria will be your authoring and 
    artist characters because they are practically your first two REAL 
    characters, so it's helpful if they both start off with the correct 
    4. RONIXIS
    - Point: On Mt. Metox, right before he beams down (NPC rule, can't 
    check his talents until after the party sneaks back onboard Ronixis' 
    ship to time travel back into the past)
    - Notes: Always starts with "Blessing of Mana." Never acquires "Sense 
    of Taste," "Love of Animals," or "Sixth Sense." If you have the 
    patience, you should keep resetting until he gets "Originality" 
    (because you do not want to try to develop "Originality" through 
    Customization with him... or anyone).
    5. CIUS
    - Point: Outside of Hot, right after you saw him push the weapons 
    merchant against the wall
    - Notes: Never acquires "Manual Dexterity" or "Blessing of Mana." You 
    should keep resetting until he gets "Originality." Since "Sixth Sense" 
    is almost impossible to learn, it wouldn't be a bad idea to keep 
    resetting until you get both.
    6. ASHLAY
    - Point: Outside of Tatory, after you've talked to him and had Ratix 
    participate once in the arena
    - Notes: Usually starts with "Originality," "Writing Ability," "Love of 
    Animals," and/or "Sixth Sense." Never acquires "Manual Dexterity," 
    "Design Sense," or "Blessing of Mana."
    7. FEAR
    - Point: 1. Save before you visit Astral to gain the Astral Emblem
                [Cius or Ashlay is in your party]
             2. Save outside the southern entrance of Astral before you
                break Fear out of jail [neither Cius or Ashlay is in your
    - Notes: Never acquires "Blessing of Mana." As seen above, you can 
    acquire Fear two different ways depending on your party composition. 
    Point 1 is the "normal" way of getting Fear and happens when you have 
    either Cius or Ashlay in your party. Take extra note that even though 
    Fear joins your party temporarily if you have Cius in your party and 
    you can check her status screen at that time; Fear will actually get a 
    brand new set of talents when you get her permanently later on. Point 2 
    is if you decide to not to recruit Cius or Ashlay. You'll get to 
    recruit Fear much earlier than most people this way, however the 
    downside is Fear can never return back to Astral and thus can never get 
    her War God Ougi from the King when the party returns to collect the 
    Emblems. As always since "Originality" and "Sixth Sense" are so 
    difficult to learn, you might want to keep resetting until she starts 
    off with them. But unlike most characters, her Customize special weapon 
    is not her strongest.
    8. JOSHUA
    - Point: 1. Right before you meet him at the entrance of Parj Temple
                [Cius/Fear/only Ratix&Iria is in your party]
             2. Right before you meet him again and save him inside Parj
                Temple [Ashlay in your party]          
    - Notes: Always starts with "Blessing of Mana." Never acquires 
    "Originality" or "Love of Animals." Joshua will only offer to 
    permanently join your party at the end of Parj Temple if you have one 
    of the Astral characters (Cius, Ashlay, Fear) in your party. If your 
    party is lacking a musician, or lacking someone with "Rhythmic Sense," 
    Joshua makes a good candidate to keep resetting until you get some 
    musical talents.
    9. MARVEL
    - Point: Right before you enter Ionis for the first time
    - Notes: Always starts with "Blessing of Mana."  One of two characters 
    (the other being Milly) who can learn all 10 talents with relative 
    ease, but make sure she starts with Sixth Sense though because it is so 
    hard to learn. Marvel joins automatically if your party contains Ashlay 
    or Joshua. If you have Cius (but no Joshua), she will not join. If you 
    have none of the above, she will ask Ratix to join only if Ratix did 
    not get drunk at the bar. You have the option of removing Marvel 
    permanently from your party if you have Joshua in your party.
    10. TINEK
    - Point: Outside of Tatory right before you fight him in the arena
    - Notes: Always starts with "Sense of Taste." Never acquires "Writing 
    Ability" or "Blessing of Mana." Like most characters, it would be wise 
    for him to start off with "Originality" and "Sixth Sense" because they 
    are difficult to learn. You cannot lose the battle against him.
    11. PERISIE
    - Point: Right before you start a Private Action in Clatos Village
    - Notes: Always starts with "Rhythmic Sense" and "Pitch Sense." Never 
    acquires "Writing Ability" or "Blessing of Mana." Assuming you meet the 
    requirements for Perisie to join (have the Ocarina and an empty 
    character slot and Milly), you still can only initiate the Perisie's 
    recruitment private action during the "dead times" of the story plot; 
    meaning when your party has no specific mission. For instance, you 
    cannot initiate the private action during the middle of your quest on 
    collecting the continental Emblems. Therefore IMO, the best time to 
    recruit Perisie (and Tinek) is as early as possible: after finishing 
    the Trial Cave in Van I Il, but before talking with Sylvant's King 
    (which means if your party combination made Milly rejoin at Sylvant, 
    you gotta hike your butt all the way back to Clatos Village before you 
    step foot in Sylvant Castle after getting her). Like most characters, 
    it would be wise for her to start off with "Originality" and "Sixth 
    Sense" because they are difficult to learn.
    Here's how I would go about learning the talents. I am assuming that 
    you're using the Violin 2 song to help you develop your talents where 
    applicable (I'll note it for each one), because playing the Violin 
    greatly enhances the chances of developing new talents. Be aware of the 
    bug that's associated with the Violin in the "MISCELLANY" section of 
    the FAQ.
    - VIOLIN USE: Yes
    - Notes: With the exception of Milly and Marvel, it's usually in your 
    best interest to keep resetting the game until your characters start 
    with "Originality." If they don't start with it, they'll have to 
    develop it through Customize, and you'll usually have to forge the 
    (unduplicatable) customizable weapon through Smithing, which hardly 
    ever works. All leading to the conclusion that it's better for a 
    character to start off with "Originality," rather than develop it. Iria 
    and Joshua will never learn this talent.
    RATIX:   Starts with
    MILLY:   After creating a Magic Persia from Crafting using a Rainbow 
             Diamond, duplicate 20 copies and start customizing while 
             Violin 2 is playing
    IRIA:    Never learns
    RONIXIS: Customize Metal Fangs while Violin 2 is playing
    CIUS:    Customize Silver Swords while Violin 2 is playing
    ASHLAY:  Customize Mithril Swords while the Violin 2 is playing
    FEAR:    Customize Bloody Swords while Violin 2 is playing
    JOSHUA:  Never learns
    MARVEL:  Duplicate 20 copies of Rainbow Diamonds and start customizing
             while Violin 2 is playing
    TINEK:   Customize Spinning Spears while Violin 2 is playing
    PERISIE: Customize Neko Fangs while Violin 2 is playing
    - VIOLIN USE: Yes
    - Notes: Ronixis will never learn this talent.
    Use the Cooking item creation with any ingredient repeatedly while 
    Violin 2 is playing.
    - VIOLIN USE: Yes
    - Notes: Cius and Ashlay will never learn this talent.
    Use the Crafting item creation using any mineral (iron is the cheapest) 
    repeatedly while Violin 2 is playing.
    - VIOLIN USE: Yes
    - Notes: Ashlay will never learn this talent.
    Use the Art item creation with the Magic Canvas repeatedly while Violin 
    2 is playing. You could also use Magic Paint and try to duplicate 
    items, but Magic Canvas is cheaper and faster.
    - VIOLIN USE: Yes
    - Notes: Tinek and Perisie will never learn this talent.
    Use the Writing item creation for any skill repeatedly while Violin 2 
    is playing.
    - VIOLIN USE: No
    - Notes: Ratix will never learn Pitch Sense.
    Developing these talents is surprisingly easy. Go into the Music menu 
    of a character, select the second option "Perform," and play any song.  
    If he/she did not learn a talent, get out of the menu, SWITCH TO 
    ANOTHER CHARACTER, go into this new character's music menu, and repeat 
    the process until someone learns Rhythmic Sense/Pitch Sense. It's 
    easier if the song being played is "Trumpet 1," since it's the very 
    first song on the list at the top of the menu. You can do these all 
    these steps pretty fast if you're quick at pressing the D-pad and 
    buttons.  You'll never learn these talents through writing music, only 
    through playing instruments. Remember, you can't just stay on one 
    character's music menu and play songs. If you didn't learn a talent, 
    you have to go to another character's menu, and have that new character 
    play a song before you can go back to the original. Also, you do not 
    have to wait until the song is done before switching. You will learn 
    the talent immediately when you start playing a song if it happens, so 
    feel free to switch quickly if you did not learn either talent.
    - VIOLIN USE: Yes
    - Notes: Ronixis and Joshua will never learn this talent.
    Use the Familiar ability and attempt to make a purchase while the 
    Violin 2 is playing. The tricky thing is that you can only use the 
    Familiar ability outside on the world map, and only failed attempt per 
    screen. Furthermore, there's another restriction that you must move 
    pass 2 more screens before you can use Familiar again after failing the 
    first time. This makes learning "Love of Animals" more annoying that 
    most of the other talents. However, there is an ideal location for 
    learning this: Sage Rock Peninsula (or that's at least what I call it). 
    It's the peninsula on your way to Sylvant with 2 treasure chests at the 
    tip (one of which was a Sage Rock). From the town of Sylvant itself, 
    the peninsula is just a couple of screens west of the town's entrance. 
    The reason why this place is of particular interest is because the exit 
    of the peninsula screen and the next two screens are very close to each 
    other. Putting this information together with the restrictions on 
    Familiar, you can see that you can play the Violin 2 song while on the 
    peninsula screen, attempt using Familiar and making a purchase, let the 
    bird fly off the screen, walk down from the peninsula screen to the 
    next screen (1 screen passed), then quickly walk right to the following 
    screen (2 screen passed), then try the Familiar ability again. If you 
    do learn the talent, it will happen as soon as you confirm the "Call 
    Pigeon" after attempting to make a purchase at the "Familiar Shop" 
    - VIOLIN USE: ???
    - Notes: This talent is almost impossible to learn. You have an 
    incredibly slim chance of learning it when you change the enemy 
    encounter setting in your character's Scout ability. I believe that 
    once changed, you have to wait a while before you can attempt to do it 
    again, but I'm not entirely certain about that. Since this talent is so 
    difficult to develop, I suggest you keep resetting until your character 
    starts off with it if you truly wanted this talent.
    - VIOLIN USE: No
    - Notes: You can't learn this talent.  Milly, Ronixis, Joshua, and 
    Marvel will automatically start off with it.
    This trick is extremely useful because it negates the annoying range 
    restrictions placed on your fighting characters' Killer Techniques and 
    Ougi techs. To bypass the restrictions though, you need to have leveled 
    the Link Combo skill to at least level 2, so that you have more than 
    one "page" of Killer Techniques available.
    Equip any technique in the short and long slots on the "first page" of 
    your character's Killer Techniques menu. Go over to the "second page" 
    of your character's Killer Techniques menu and equip the desired 
    technique on the slot it normally can't be equipped on (since techs 
    done in combos do not have any range restrictions). For instance, 
    Ratix's 7-Star Twin Slash is normally a short-ranged attack only 
    (except in combos), so equip 7-Star Twin Slash in the LONG-range slot 
    of Ratix's SECOND page. Now go back to the first page and remove the 
    long-range killer technique that you initially put there before. Now 
    leave Ratix's Killer Technique menu completely and then return to it. 
    7-Star Twin Slash (which you had just put in the LONG-range slot of the 
    SECOND page) will now be in the LONG-range slot of the FIRST page where 
    it normally can't be placed!
     _/ 2. BUGS  _/
    If you've read Ian Kelley's FAQ, you'd know that using the Violin to 
    learn new talents will result in the game freezing if you pushed any 
    button while the "gained-a-new-talent" music is playing.  And you 
    probably also read that the way to avoid it is to wait for the music to 
    end before you push the "A" button to continue on.  But what Ian forgot 
    to mention was that you CANNOT BE STANDING INSIDE A TOWN, CAVE, OR 
    DUNGEON. If you tried to acquire a new talent while inside any town, 
    cave, or dungeon the game will still freeze even if you waited until 
    the talent music was over.  To avoid the bug, stand in the "overworld" 
    map screen (if you can call it that) if you want to use the violin to 
    learn talents.
    Resting at an inn or drinking from the healing fountain on Mt. Metox is 
    usually supposed to cure you of all status ailments. But occasionally, 
    if your character is inflicted with both the death and petrify status 
    (such as after a Black Slime/Gabrielle fight), the inn/healing fountain 
    won't cure that character to maximum health.  In such cases, you'll 
    have to use an item or spell to cure the petrifaction first, and then 
    rest at the inn/drink the water again.
    Sometimes the dungeon music will suddenly stop and repeat itself when 
    it's not supposed to. Nothing special about this bug. This is different 
    from the bugs associated with playing the game on an emulator, 
    discussed later.
    This happened several times to me when fighting the Gabrielle. 
    Gabrielle can move off into the top of the screen and not come back. 
    None of my characters had any attacks that could reach her, but she 
    could still cast Meteor Swarm on my party.
    When a lot is happening in battle, especially when you're constantly 
    bringing up other character's menus trying to manually control them. 
    Sometimes when you try to pull up a character's combat menu, it'll be 
    invisible.  Well, several times when this happen, I was able to go into 
    what appeared to be Marvel and Iria's magic menu!  There were no spells 
    listed of course, but it was an interesting bug nonetheless.
    I'm not sure if this is a regular bug or if it's just a problem of my 
    copy of Star Ocean, but my game files have erased several times, 
    resulting in me having to start over again. Just a warning. Of course, 
    this warning means nothing to the 99.9% of the people playing this 
    game, but to the 0.1% of us who have the cart too, well, be careful.
    Sometimes the music will stop suddenly. When this happens, be very 
    careful because the game might freeze. Reverting back to recent save 
    states might still reproduce the bug. I hear you have to revert back to 
    a normal game save to continue, or try to exit onto anther screen as 
    quickly as you can.
    Everyone has trouble with this part because the way Ian Kelley words 
    the solution to the puzzle is very difficult to understand. So here's a 
    more straightforward solution:
    Hit the switches in this order: 6, 4, 3 and the door in middle should 
         1     2     3     Door     4     5     6
     _/ 4. MILLY WHERE ARE YOU?  _/
    A point of much confusion for people is, "Why isn't Milly appearing in 
    Edcart like Ian Kelley's FAQ says she will?" The answer is: depending 
    on your party composition by the time you first reach Edcart, Milly 
    will either meet up with your party in Edcart (earlier) or Sylvant 
    (later). Ian Kelley used 2 party combinations to write his walkthrough, 
    but both of them resulted in Milly appearing in Edcart, therefore he 
    never mentioned the possibility that Milly could appear elsewhere. Here 
    are the possible party combinations by the time you reach Edcart and 
    where Milly will rejoin the group as result of them (Ratix and Iria of 
    course always included):
    1. CIUS ONLY: Edcart
    2. CIUS and JOSHUA: Edcart
    3. ASHLAY ONLY: Edcart
    4. ASHLAY and JOSHUA: Sylvant
    5. FEAR and JOSHUA: Sylvant
    6. NO ONE (just Ratix and Iria): Edcart
    Note that "FEAR ONLY" is impossible, because you must agree to go to 
    Parj Temple for her to stay with you (you can't skip Parj Temple), and 
    if you refuse to let Fear join after finishing Parj, Joshua will leave 
    as well. "JOSHUA ONLY" is also impossible because he will only offer to 
    join if you have an Astral character (Cius, Ashlay, Fear) already in 
    your party. Also keep in mind that if Milly rejoins the party in 
    Sylvant, you can never do her special PA where she gives Ratix the 
    "Charm" accessory. That will only occur if she rejoined in Edcart, and 
    apparently only if she has a high Approval Rating with him too (so buy 
    her that damn earring!).
    Is it really possible to kill the last boss in just 2 seconds? Of 
    course it is. Power up your guys to at around level 90 or higher you'll 
    know when they're gods). Bring Ratix, Marvel, Iria, and Perisie into 
    the fight, all in Free Form formation. As soon at the battle starts, 
    (using the Link Combo Range restriction cheat), make Ratix do 7-Star 
    Twin Slashx4; Marvel do Hail Orbx4; Iria do Sakura-Zhangx4 (or Sakura 
    Flashx4); Perisie do Charming Posex4. If all the attacks hit at the 
    same time and Jie did not put up his shield, he'll go down in a mere 
    couple of seconds.
     _/ 6. APPROVAL RATINGS  _/
    There are really only two ways to change Approval Ratings between 
    characters: 1) Private Actions and 2) in battle. IMO, Private Actions 
    have a much greater effect on Approval Ratings than battles do. I think 
    some Private Actions that lower AR between certain characters can do 
    unrepairable damage between the two. For instance, I think viewing the 
    Private Action in Tatory involving Joshua and Marvel's conversation 
    will utterly ruin any chance of a specific paired ending between the 
    two of them. And since the endings are based heavily on the final AR 
    ratings between characters, be very careful about not only what 
    decisions you take during Private Actions, but also which Private 
    Actions you end up viewing.
    In battle, you can raise AR between characters by using any type of 
    curative spell or item on a character; whether necessary or not. 
    However, I think the change is very small and won't have as much as an 
    effect that Private Actions do. Occasionally, when you do use a 
    curative spell or item on a character, the healed character will 
    actually give some sort of voice clip to indicate a sort of "thank 
    you," (be it actually saying "Arigato," "Thank You," or just a sigh of 
    relief). Not all characters thank each other though. Here's my 
    1.  RATIX: Thanks everybody
    2.  DORN: Thanks Ratix and Milly
    3.  MILLY: Thanks Ratix and Ronixis only
    4.  IRIA: Thanks everybody but Milly
    5.  RONIXIS: Thanks everybody but Milly
    6.  CIUS: Thanks everybody but Milly
    7.  ASHLAY: Thanks everybody but Milly
    8.  FEAR: Thanks everybody but Milly
    9.  JOSHUA: Thanks everybody but Milly
    10. MARVEL: Thanks everybody but Milly
    11. TINEK: Thanks everybody but Milly
    12. PERISIE: Thanks everybody but Milly
    This is mostly from memory, so I might have to update later with 
    corrections, but I do know Milly seems to be the most disliked 
    character, with Ratix being the only one who thanks her for any kind of 
    healing. Maybe everyone just takes her healing for granted? But looking 
    at it the other way, Milly's not giving her share of thank yous when 
    she's getting healed back either. Maybe she's just spoiled?
    1. Required Talents for Successful Item Creation
    Well one myth that has been dispelled is the need for Originality for 
    the Smithing item creation. Simply, it is not needed and it makes sense 
    why. All item creations/abilities that have a talent associated with 
    it, you can learn the talent through repeated use of that item 
    creation/ability. Repeated use of Smithing will learn you nothing. 
    Also, just try it out, characters that don't have Originality can be 
    just as successful creating powerful weapons as characters without it.  
    Here is a list of all the talents and what item creation/ability they 
    are associated with:
    1.  Originality: CUSTOMIZE
    2.  Sense of Taste: COOKING
    3.  Manual Dexterity: CRAFTING
    4.  Design Sense: ART
    5.  Writing Ability: AUTHORING
    6.  Rhythmic Sense: MUSIC
    7.  Pitch Sense: MUSIC
    8.  Love of Animals: FAMILIAR
    9.  Sixth Sense: SCOUT
    10. Blessing of Mana: ALCHEMY
    Notice that each TALENT is only associated with only one item creation 
    or ability.  Also take note when you back-to-back same item creations. 
    The game automatically cycles through only characters with the highest 
    proficiency and the correct talents.  All other item creations and 
    abilities (Compounding, Identifying, Smithing, Oracle, Training) do not 
    require any talents to be successful.
    2. Marvel's Holy Orb
    Another myth that has been circulating around is that equipping Marvel 
    with her ultimate weapon, the Holy Orb, will cause her Stamina to drop 
    to zero. This is false. What is really happening is that Holy Orb 
    carries with it a -10 stamina penalty. And since Marvel starts off with 
    only 10 STM, if you were to equip her with a Holy Orb right away, her 
    stamina will indeed drop to zero.  But this does not mean that anytime 
    you equip her with the Holy Orb her STM will fall to nothing. The -10 
    STM penalty quickly becomes irrelevant when you begin to level her up.
     _/1. Ian Kelley _/
    Obviously for writing (at the time) the only walkthroughs for the game. 
    I used his FAQs to get a lot of the Japanese Technique and skill names 
    with this guide's initial release. I also used his hiragana/katakana 
    charts back when I first played Dragon Quest 6 and Star Ocean back in 
    1997/1998. English patch or not, you still gotta give respect for the 
    guy who wrote the most comprehensive Star Ocean guide to date out of 
    the kindness of his own heart.
     _/2. Sherwin Tam  _/
    I kinda borrowed the format he used for the talent portion of his Star 
    Ocean 2 guide. I modified it a little, but I'll credit where I got the 
     _/3. GameFAQ message board  _/
    For being a helpful source of new information and gameplay help; 
    especially informing me about Fear and Joshua's recruiting conditions.
    Email me at lelbx@hotmail.com for any comments, corrections, 
    contributions, and all that kind of stuff.  Until Star Ocean 3 (comes 
    out in the US)...