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I used the bloody armor for Gabriele Celeste and the Queen, and also on the floor with life flayers. I couldn't be bothered to keep spamming revive items in those fights. But its not needed for most fights in the game.
Well I had to use 4x Bloody Armors against Limiter off final boss both the Barker and Mithril Eater boss.
The boss on floor 8 of the bonus dungeon else had that one eat my entire party at once for a game over.
I had the level 99 Funny Thieves floor 7 kill my entire party in 1 hit on earth mode hence the need for bloody armors on that floor.
As in I only used the cheap armor for late disc 2 on disc 1 its not needed.
Mithril eater only did like 6000 or so with his aoe blast. One healing star nearly tops that off. And he only got one of those attacks off before he died. Between Claude using normal combo w/Aeterna, Bowman spamming poison pills, and Dias spamming Chaos sword, it was a quick fight.
And Bowman does more DPS than Chisato by a huge margin. Bowman shines in high HP boss fights, after you get the boss stunned he stands there and spams poison poison poison poison poison pills!! That attack he has, neckbreaker is also underrated. Its a great attack for picking off mages, because he teleports directly above them, and hits regardless if there are mobs in front of the mages or not. I used that on him and poison pills. I preferred poison pills over explosion because they're non-elemental.
For live flayers - having a mage helps in that fight, if only to interrupt them from attacking long enough for Claude to sneak in a ripper blast and pick off several of them. The reason to use mages in SO2 is to hit-stun all the enemies on the screen. And in some fights that can save your bacon. Look at attack spells more as a defensive measure than an offensive one.
Well I had the mithril eaters only move not only do 7000 damage on earth mode but I had it used again before Healing Star triggered resulting in me being forced to Bloody Armor it since I couldn't stun/peep it for the entire fight.
But I never had any mage join but Rena but even with a Claude Opera Rena and Chisato/Bowman party I still have the Live Flayers etc still kill all 4 pc's in under 5 seconds into the fight.
With a Claude Rena Ashton Bowman/Chisato party and all but Rena with the Bloody Armors I still lost the battles as soon as Rena died in 1 hit.
I never could stun lock any boss at all so for me Tear Gas will outdamage Poison pills easily and even with the Aeterna (Eternal Sword) I still couldn't stun Mithril Eater for the entire fight on earth mode.
As for using a mage's attack spells as a defense for me that's useless I still had a Live Flayer kill Celine or Rena before the crappy Ray spell went into effect.
Hence for me to break this game its doing 9999 damage hits while being invincible towrards ALL damage.