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Final Fantasy XII
Power Walkthrough / In-Depth Information
Version 1.2
Last updated December 13, 2006
Written, edited, and compiled by Arthellinus and many others
Copyright (c) Arthellinus (arthellinus@yahoo.com) 2006, all rights reserved.

===============================================================================
Legal Stuff
===============================================================================

This FAQ is for personal use only and is not to be reproduced for any other
reason. It CANNOT be placed neither in part nor in its entirety on any website
other than the following:

http://www.gamefaqs.com/

or otherwise distributed publicly without advance written permission from the
author. Use of ANY part of this guide on any other website or as a part of any
public display is strictly prohibited, and a violation of copyright.


===============================================================================
Contents
===============================================================================

0. Notes for Versions 1.2 and Up .................................... [000]

1. READ FIRST ....................................................... [010]

2. Speed Power Walkthrough .......................................... [020]
a. Assumptions (ALSO READ FIRST) ................................. [02a]
b. Early Power-Leveling .......................................... [02b]
c. Blitzing, Part 1 .............................................. [02c]
d. Zodiac Spear and Other Goodies ................................ [02d]
e. Blitzing, Part 2 .............................................. [02e]
f. Catching Up ................................................... [02f]
g. Clearing Draklor .............................................. [02g]
h. Balfonheim and Beyond ......................................... [02h]

3. Tips and Tricks .................................................. [030]
a. The Big Glitch ................................................ [03a]
b. Other Helpful Hints ........................................... [03b]
c. Rare Item Details ............................................. [03c]
d. Character Stats ............................................... [03d]

4. Analysis [040]
a. Weapon Speed .................................................. [04a]
b. Weapon Damage ................................................. [04b]
c. Character-Weapon Proficiencies ................................ [04c]

5. Changelog / Version History ...................................... [050]

6. Credits .......................................................... [060]


===============================================================================
0. Notes for Versions 1.2 and Up
===============================================================================

- The previous version of this guide (1.11) disappeared from gamefaqs.com. As
this is a resubmission, I have decided to modify this document quite a bit
and strip it down to its essentials.
- The Version History has been removed from the front of the guide and moved to
the end, merged with the Changelog. I felt that the previous format produced
unnecessary clutter.
- I have removed both the Auto-Leveling section (formerly 3a) as well as about
half of Section 4 (primarily dealing with weapons). These sections are dealt
with much more thoroughly in the Negalmuur Auto-Leveling Guide and the Game
Mechanics FAQ (at gamefaqs.com). I will, however, leave the bulk of my own
weapons analysis research for your perusal, although you can get a good
rundown of it in maltzsan's Game Mechanics FAQ.
- I have moved past Final Fantasy XII, so Version 1.2 will be the last "major"
update for this guide. I am grateful for all of the feedback that I have
received, and I had a lot of fun writing this. When I do decide to write an
FAQ, I usually try to focus on coming up with something different from all
the standard things that are usually covered in other guides. Hopefully, I
will have the opportunity and motivation to do more of this in the future.
- Finally, if anyone wants Version 1.11 (with all of the stuff that I took out
of this version), I have uploaded it. You may obtain it at:

http://www.geocities.com/arthellinus/final_fantasy_xii_in-depth_1.11.txt



===============================================================================
1. READ FIRST [010]
===============================================================================

Q: Aha, you missed something!
A: It's likely. This guide still has quite a few holes. Feel free to e-mail me
if you want, I will give you credit if I haven't already made a note to
myself to add or fix something. You'll just have to trust me on this one.

However, I WILL NOT necessarily accept all suggestions. For example, if you
write to tell me that you can steal the so-and-so weapon from Monster A even
though your current weapons (if you follow this guide) are either much
stronger or about to become much stronger, I will not bother to put it in
because it will not make that much of a difference. While I certainly
appreciate as much constructive correspondence as possible, please make sure
that you have methods that are clearly more effective before submitting
them.

Q: Who should use this guide?
A: This guide is for people who want to do a completionist run through Final
Fantasy XII in as little time as possible. It involves maximizing efficiency
in terms of leveling and acquisition of high-rank items and equipment. This
guide also has a large chunk of miscellaneous bits of useful and/or
interesting information about various nuances of the game.

However, be aware that this guide does NOT actually tell you how to do or
get everything in the game. This guide is supposed to act as a companion
piece to whatever real full walkthrough you are using.

Q: Who should NOT use this guide?
A: This guide is NOT NOT NOT NOT NOT NOT NOT NOT for anyone who is looking for
a traditional walkthrough that takes the player step by step through every
single area and task in the game. I do not recommend that first-timers or
casual players use this guide because it contains a lot of methods that can
grow tedious very quickly, and if you are playing the game for the first
time, it really ruins the experience and also takes most of the challenge
out of the game. Unless, of course, doing the kind of stuff described in
this guide is EXACTLY why you play RPGs.

Q: Spoilers?
A: Location spoilers, I suppose. And "name" spoilers, maybe. But no plot
spoilers.

Q: What can I expect in future updates?
A: More outside contributions as I receive them. The walkthrough is more or
less set in stone barring any significant revelations. The focus from
Version 1.00 on will be on the supplementary sections.

Q: Why won't you respond to my e-mail regarding how to beat (so and so)?
A: See first two questions. Do NOT come to me if you're having trouble with a
boss if you're playing through the game regularly. There are other resources
for that. The strategies that are listed in this document are VERY specific
and are the exceptions, not the rule. I will ONLY respond to questions that
actually pertain to the context of this guide. Use proper judgment if you
have a question and make sure that it really warrants a response from me.

Q: Can you tell me how to do/get (this and that)?
A: If it's not in the guide, it's not in the guide. There are already several
excellent walkthroughs that cover how to get everything in the game in great
detail. Again, what is here is very specific and circumstantial, and if I
don't mention something, it is for the purposes of this document irrelevant.

Q: Haven't I seen a lot of this stuff before?
A: It's likely, but isn't a compilation nice? I do give out proper credit, of
course.

Q: How do I get the Zodiac Spear?
A: In order to gain easy access to the Zodiac Spear (Attack +150), one of the
best weapons in the game, you must NOT open certain treasure chests. They
are listed as follows, in CHRONOLOGICAL order.

1. At the southern end of Rabanastre Lowtown, do not open the chest that
sits in front of Old Dalan's house.
2. In the Rabanastre Palace Cellar, do not open the treasure chest(s) that
sit in the southeast corner of the map. There are either one or two
chests that may appear there. Do not open anything in either case. To be
specific, do not open the chest with the Elixir in it (on your left as
you approach the southeast corner), but that chest is not guaranteed to
show up. Just play it safe and don't open anything you see in the
southeast.
3. In the Nalbina Dungeons, do not open any of the treasure chests that
appear in the room where you get the map for the area and regain your
equipment (Confiscatory).
4. At the eastern-most section of the Phon Coast (Vaddu Strand), do not open
any of the 16 chests that are there. This step is irrelevant, because if
you are going to follow the walkthrough in this guide, you will obtain
the spear way before you ever reach the Phon Coast.

The Zodiac Spear will be in a treasure chest in the Necrohol of Nabudis. For
more details, consult the appropriate section of the walkthrough.

Note that I said EASY ACCESS. There is another way to get the Zodiac Spear,
but it involves a treasure chest elsewhere late in the game (Henne Mines
secret area) that has a 10% chance of appearing, 10% chance to contain an
item, and if it does hold an item, 10% chance that the item is the Zodiac
Spear, making your effective probability 0.1% each time you try to respawn
the chest. The exact location of this chest will not be dealt with here;
look elsewhere for that.

Q: How do I get to Nalbina Fortress?
A: I REALLY don't understand why people are having trouble with this. No, you
do NOT have to cross the Nebra River. Take the eastern exit out of Yardang
Labyrinth in the Estersand. That's it. No more questions on that, please.


===============================================================================
2. Speed Power Walkthrough [020]
===============================================================================

Or is it a power speed walkthrough?


---------------------------------
2a. Assumptions (ALSO READ FIRST) [02a]
---------------------------------

As you are reading this, I am making the following assumptions:
- The reader understands ALL game basics. If you don't understand Quickenings
or anything like that, learn what you need to on your own. You should not be
reading this guide yet if you are not FULLY comfortable with the game's
mechanics. I will NOT respond to e-mails that ask basic questions regarding
Gambits/Quickening/etc.
- The reader has a good general idea of how to spend LP beyond whatever
specific recommendations are made in this walkthrough (e.g. focusing mainly
on augments and getting only whatever equipment/magick licenses are
necessary).
- The reader completes clan hunts with some regularity in order to obtain
rewards and unlock higher-level hunts.


------------------------
2b. Early Power-Leveling [02b]
------------------------

[Timeframe]
After the Rogue Tomato hunt and before breaking into Rabanastre Palace.

[Objective]
Level Vaan, and Vaan only, on his own to approximately Lv 25-30. Acquire some
good equipment and monographs along the way. Since all of your other party
members join permanently at Vaan's level plus one or two, and Balthier and Fran
are counted to join permanently as soon as you get them, this is really your
best timeframe to maximize the benefits of the level carry-over.

[Locations]
Dalmasca Estersand, Dalmasca Westersand, Giza Plains.

[Notable Items and Events] (hereafter listed as [Notables])
Rod/Iron Sword, Leather Shield, Bronze Helm, Bronze Armor, Kotetsu, Gladius,
Hunter's Monograph, Warmage's Monograph.

[Procedure]
I'll just mention this up front. Complete the Thextera hunt whenever you feel
comfortable doing so. Also, join Clan Centurio as soon as it's convenient.

I want to take a moment to credit freakazoidz for being the "original" (well,
on GameFAQs anyway) FFXII power-leveler. However, the approach I outline here
is very different from his.

Anyway, make sure Vaan is alone when you do this. You can do the Giza Plains
event with Penelo and wait until she leaves before doing all of this stuff.
People say it's easier to farm LP with Penelo in the party. That's fine, but it
most certainly is not easier to level, and in the long run, the levels matter
more, since you're going to amass LP fairly quickly anyway if you're
overpowered and one-shotting everything in your path.

Okay, first of all, let's get a good weapon before we do anything. This entire
paragraph is courtesy of x3mgame@gmail.com. Head into the Estersand. Kill some
stuff to buff up a level or two if you think you're a little on the weak side,
exploring the Estersand as you do so. Go to the Sand-swept Naze (two screens
south of the South Bank Village) and don't touch any treasure chests. Take the
southeastern exit. You will end up in a small area where there's a save point.
Save your game and head back to the Sand-swept Naze. Now move to the SMALL
CLIFF that juts out slightly a little east of north-center. There might be one
treasure chest here. If you see it, open it. There's a chance that you'll
receive a Rod (+30 rod). If you don't get it, or if you don't see the chest
(which happens 9% of the time), reload your game and try again. Keep doing this
until you get the Rod.

Remember that we are STILL IN THE ESTERSAND. The blue save crystal I am
referring to is in the small area known as Passage Entrance.

For some cold, hard numbers, the target chest has a 75% of appearing, a 60%
chance to contain an item, and a 50% chance for the item to be the Rod. Your
net probability is 22.5% for each time you reset the area.

If your patience runs out, that's okay, just keep going for now.

Now we can get down to business and one-shot most of the stuff that comes our
way (if you didn't get the Rod, it'll take two rounds; no big deal). Stay in
the Estersand and chain Wolves. Lots and lots of them. Make sure you don't kill
indiscriminately because you want the chain for the loot. Money is hard to come
by and you want to make as much as possible. Spend all LP on moving closer to
the Quickening licenses in the accessories corner (upper right section). You
can also head to the Giza Plains and kill Hyenas without breaking your chain,
because Wolves and Hyenas are the same class of monster. However, Wolves are
far more plentiful. Up to you. Thanks to Gavin B. for reminding me about the
Hyenas.

Once you have 2000 gil, head to Nalbina Fortress. Purchase the Bronze Helm and
Bronze Armor to bolster your defenses. Buy the Leather Shield as well. It will
be of use later. If you did NOT get the Rod, buy the Iron Sword here when you
can. It'll cost another 1200 gil (for a total of 3200).

Now, I do not recommend killing the Ichthons along the coast of the Banks of
the Nebra (as originally suggested by freakzoidz) for an extended period of
time. It IS a good way to gain a few levels when you're weak, but eventually,
you're going to want to switch your focus to LP. While Ichthons give out much
more experience compared to Wolves, they are only a temporary fix. We want to
reach our Quickenings on the License Board as soon as possible, and to do that
we need LP. So kill a few Ichthons to gain some levels quickly, then go back to
chaining Wolves for LP and loot. Thanks to hellfire185@gmail.com for making me
clarify myself here.

Once you have two Quickenings (or MQs), switch your LP spending to augments.
From Steal, head down and go through First Aid, Poach, Traveler, Shield Block,
Battle Lore, and +100 HP. You don't have to do this immediately, but it's the
easiest path to dive into the augments section (since the Gambit licenses are
just empty spaces at the moment). You can pick up your third Quickening next to
the +100 HP license, but I again don't recommend this because you don't need
three MQs right away. You should save it for one of your other party members
to access it easily. Instead, go for the last Quickening in the upper right.
But again, don't fret over this now. This is long-term stuff.

Getting back on track, you can stop chaining Wolves once you have two MQs. If
you want to mix things up, head to the Westersand and fight there.
dwm042@email.com suggests killing Cockatrices one screen north of the Galtea
Downs. Move two screens away and come back. Anyway, it's up to you.

You should be Lv 10-12 at this point (after some Ichthon killing and a lot of
Wolf chaining). Now get out of the Estersand and head to the Giza Plains. In
the southwest section (Starfall Field) there are two Lv 20ish Werewolves
stalking around. There is a save point east of that area in the Crystal Glade.
Keep your distance from the Werewolves and head for the save point. Save your
game and get ready to beef yourself up. A lot.

Now target one Werewolf with an MQ. Try to combo 3 Red Spirals. This will
trigger Inferno and likely a) kill the targeted Werewolf and b) severely damage
the other. The second one will immediately rush you, so run, run, or you'll be
well done, until you reach the save point. Take a deep breath and head back to
Starfall Field. Wipe out the other Werewolf with an MQ. This whole process nets
you roughly 2400 Exp and 4 LP. At Lv 10-12 your levels should start to jump up
after each round.

By the way, I had you learn two MQs just in case. If you must use White Whorl,
then by all means, use it.

Note that sometimes Inferno won't be enough to kill the first Werewolf if your
level's on the low end. If that's the case, you just have to hit and run twice
before finishing the job on your third trip.

When you've rested at the save point after killing your first two Werewolves,
run east to the South Bank and then two screens west back to Starfall Field.
The Werewolves have respawned. Now it's just an increasingly mindless cycle,
with intermittent level-up music. Yay.

Keep doing this until you're Lv 20-25. If you're lucky, you'll have gotten a
Kotetsu (+50 katana), or even multiple ones. If not, you will eventually,
you've got a lot of Werewolves to go through and the odds favor you. Anyway,
having just one is fine. At this point, you should have learned the Shield
Block license I mentioned earlier. Time to get another weapon.

Go back to Nalbina and buy the Blind spell, and learn it via the License Board.
Head to the Westersand and start killing Wolves there. Once you've killed 20+
of them, go to the southwest exit of the Galtea Downs, which leads you to a
small, isolated area. The Lindbur Wolf should be here. De-equip your Kotetsu
and equip your Leather Shield for defense. Keep casting Blind until it hits.
You may need to run in and out to heal while you are doing this. Once the
Lindbur Wolf is blind, kill its minions and then proceed to steal. Eventually,
you will get the Gladius (+45 dagger)! Waste the Lindbur Wolf with your
Kotetsu, or with the Gladius you just stole.

By the way, I want to thank AmanoJ for confirming my suspicion that a flashing
chain number is NOT an indicator of when a rare monster appears. I had left the
tidbit on here about having your chain flash to get the Lindbur Wolf to spawn
because it is more or less a true conditional in this case, but in general, you
should NOT make this correlation.

Werewolves are much easier to kill now since they are weak to Wind (inherent in
your shiny new Gladius), so you can just whack them with regular attacks. You
can continue to level up as much as you want. I recommend hitting around Lv 30.
This process should not take longer than 9-10 hours if you've been doing
everything correctly.

Some of you might be wondering why I didn't tell you to go get a Gladius early.
If you want to, by all means, go ahead. It'll speed up your werewolf-skinning
if you manage to steal the Gladius at a low level (and survive). My method is
merely safer and lessens the frustration when you do go after the Lindbur Wolf.
It's not necessarily more efficient in this case, but that really depends on
how lucky you are in terms of stealing the Gladius. Just a mild disclaimer.

Go back to Rabanastre and unlock all of the Forgotten Grimoires:

- 18000 gil -> Hunter's Monograph, enhances loot from beasts/avions
Speak with Gatsly in the Muthru Bazaar after completing the Thextera hunt.
- 19000 gil -> Knight's Monograph, enhances loot from giants/insects
Talk to any weapon merchant more than 30 times.
- 20000 gil -> Warmage's Monograph, enhances loot from amorphs/undead
Read the hunt bulletin board more than 20 times.
- 21000 gil -> Mage's Monograph, enhances loot from fiends
Talk to any magick merchant over 25 times.
- 22000 gil -> Scholar's Monograph, enhances loot from constructs
Talk to any armor merchant more than 15 times.
- 22000 gil -> Dragoon's Monograph, enhances loot from dragons/plants
Read the hunt bulletin board more than 40 times (you can save this one for
later if you want to differentiate between Scholar's and Dragoon's).
- 25000 gil -> Sage's Monograph, enhances drops from elementals
Talk to any merchant over 100 times (this doesn't take much additional effort
after unlocking all of the other ones).

It's unrealistic to want to buy all of these now. You should get either the
Hunter's or Warmage's Monograph immediately, since you should have enough money
to afford one or the other. If you have enough left over, get the other one. If
not, make the other one the next one you get. Get the others in any order you
want, but generally the Sage's Monograph should be obtained last, since you're
not going to be chaining elementals anytime soon (or ever).

Whew, now to actually advance the story! Unless ...

OPTIONAL: You can head into Zertinan Caverns and chain Slimes to pick up a
Winged Helm (+13 MDef, +5 Str, +3 Spd) or two (or six), or you can use MQs on
Dive Talons in the Westersand to pick up Burning Bows (+63 bow), but this is
really overkill and ultimately not efficient. The Dive Talons might have been
if you could use regular attacks, but since it's a flying monster you'd have
to spam MQs again, and I bet you're sick of that. Remember, that's what this
guide is about. Efficiency. Let's move on.


--------------------
2c. Blitzing, Part 1 [02c]
--------------------

[Timeframe]
Between and including Rabanastre Palace and the Tomb of Raithwall.

[Objective]
Get through these areas as quickly as possible. There are optional pit stops to
level further and gain lots of money, but they are entirely that: optional. Go
through the Barheim Key sidequest.

[Locations]
Garamsythe Waterway, Royal Palace of Rabanastre, Garamsythe Waterway (again),
Nalbina Dungeons, Barheim Passage, Dalmasca Estersand, Rabanastre (again),
Bhujerba, Lhusu Mines, Dreadnought Leviathan, Rabanastre Westersand, Ogir-Yensa
Sandsea, Nam-Yensa Sandsea, Tomb of Raithwall.

[Notables]
Francisca, Flowering Cactoid hunt, Nidhogg hunt, Demonsbane(s).

[Procedure]
Race through the game up until you exit the Barheim Passage into the Estersand.
If you got a Mage's Habit from a Mimic in Barheim, that is a big plus. If not,
no big deal.

After you head back to Rabanastre, everyone will leave and you will have Vaan
by himself again. Now that you have Gambits to play with, as well as the
Protect spell, you can go back to killing Werewolves, which will be REALLY
easy. You can chain them with impunity at this point. However, Balthier and
Fran do not gain any experience with you, so they will not have any extra
levels you add here once they rejoin (which is almost immediately, in terms of
story progression). Basch, however, has not yet permanently joined (again, he
will almost immediately), so he does reap the benefits here. Do what you want.

Note that you can also head back into the Garamsythe Waterway and beat up on
Gigantoads and Malboro Overkings, which individually give more more experience
than the Werewolves, but you cannot efficiently defeat them with regular
attacks like you can Werewolves. Therefore, I do not recommend this method for
leveling. HOWEVER, you can do this for other reasons ...

Credit here goes to branflakecereal@gmail.com. You can obtain a Francisca (+89
axe) from the Bazaar right now by selling off Wind Magicite x6, Malboro Fruit
x4, and Pointed Horn x2. Wind Magicites are dropped by Dive Talons in the
Westersand. Malboro Fruits are dropped by the Malboro Overkings in the sewers.
Finally, Pointed Horns can be dropped by the Lizards in the sewers. The axe
costs 10350 gil. You can only get one of them, but it's a huge boost for where
you are in the game and doesn't take too long. ramza723@yahoo.com gets thanks
for catching my error here (I originally said Gigantoads instead of Lizards).

While we're here, take up the Flowering Cactoid hunt and complete it if you
haven't done so already. Take the flower you get to Dantro's wife in the South
Bank Village.

Next up are Bhujerba and the Lhusu Mines. Big money to be made here. The second
bridge in the Lhusu Mines has skeletons popping up en masse. Once you've mopped
them up, run two sections away and come back. Chain as much as you want here.
99 Bone Fragments sell for 19107 gil. I will say that money is not that
important right now. If you kill everything that comes your way, you can buy
what you need to buy. As you will see, this only includes key accessories and
enough armor to get by (skimping on armor is possible because we will focus on
obtaining some killer weapons). The other Monographs generally don't make
themselves worth it this early on (although now you understand why I told you
to get the Warmage's). However, if you want to put your mind at ease and farm
until you've bought up all the Grimoires, I won't blame you.

Once you touch down in the Westersand after the events on the Leviathan, go
back to Rabanastre and sign up for the Nidhogg hunt. Take a detour and ride an
airship to Bhujerba. Make sure you choose the leisure craft option. Aboard the
airship, buy a bunch of Teleport Stones. Traveling will be much easier from now
on. Complete the Nidhogg hunt in Bhujerba. Thanks to dwm042 for catching this
slip-up of mine (I originally said Nidhogg was in the Nam-Yensa Sandsea, oops).
Anyway, hold on to that Great Serpentskin.

In addition, you should complete the Rocktoise hunt in Bhujerba while you're at
it. If you've been doing hunts diligently up to this point, your clan rank
should have upgraded to Rear Guard, which means that you can now purchase
Teleport Stones from the Clan Shop in the Muthru Bazaar. Thanks to M.W. for
this tip.

Now, keep going until you reach the Tomb of Raithwall. With your high levels,
you may be tempted to try your luck with the first Demon Wall. He's not exactly
a pushover, but he's pretty close. Just use your Kotetsu(s) and Gladius and MQ
it to oblivion at your leisure.

Once you defeat the first Demon Wall, kill the second one as well. Activate the
side stairs in the area of the first Demon Wall by examining the area where the
Demon Wall was and then save your game outside at the Gate Crystal. Now take
those stairs all the way to the back. Go all the way down until the two paths
converge. There is a 70% chance that there will be a chest here. If there is,
there will be a 22.5% chance that it holds one Demonsbane (+59 sword). You can
fight through all of the Tallows, or just grab the chest and run. If the chest
isn't there or if you don't get the sword, reload your game and try again. If
you run out of patience, then don't worry about it. The Demonsbane is merely
temporary and will become obsolete once we get out of Raithwall. However, the
fun part is that the chest respawns, so you can grab the Demonsbane, run back
to the save point, save, reload, and try your luck again ad infinitum/nauseum.
Get as many Demonsbanes as you want. If nothing else, they sell for 3000 gil
each. Normally I wouldn't go into such detail on an optional item, but if you
feel entitled to some reward for power-leveling to beat the first Demon Wall,
then ...

One other note, courtesy of civicized@hotmail.com. The Tallows can drop
Broadaxes (+59 axe), if you want any of those. Like with the Demonsbanes, you
don't have to do this, for the purposes of this guide. Due to the Francisca
discovery that was mentioned earlier, this tip is now somewhat obsolete in the
context of this guide, but I will leave the credit here.

Let's assume you obtained one Demonsbane and move on. Well, what are you
waiting for? Clear Raithwall.


----------------------------------
2d. Zodiac Spear and Other Goodies [02d]
----------------------------------

[Timeframe]
After returning to Rabanastre from Raithwall and before going to Jahara.

[Objective]
Defeat the Bomb King (and exploit it for gil). Grab the Zodiac Spear from
Nabudis. Get the Barheim Key and steal one or more Deathbringer(s) from Ithuno.

[Locations]
Rabanastre, Nalbina Fortress, Mosphoran Highwaste, Salikawood, Necrohol of
Nabudis, Dalmasca Estersand, Barheim Passage.

[Notable Items and Events]
Thief's Cuffs, Golden Amulet x6, Zodiac Spear(!), Barheim Key, Deathbringer(s),
other stuff in Barheim (optional), Loxley Bow.

[Procedure]
Read this section IN ITS ENTIRETY before you decide on what to do. You'll see
what I mean.

First, go back to the Estersand. Complete the chain of events that unlocks the
ferry for your usage and ends with Dantro's wife informing you that the
Serpentskin you gave her (you still had it, right?) will speed up her mystery
guest's recovery. I will not detail the sidequest here; it is well-documented
elsewhere. Thanks to dwm042 (again) for pointing out that you can't do this
until after you come back from Raithwall.

If you sold the Great Serpentskin for some reason, all is not lost. However,
you might not be able to do the Barheim stuff (see end of section) until a
little bit later in the game (i.e. after some more story events).

Okay, now back to the main task at hand. Head back to Rabanastre. Make
ABSOLUTELY sure that all six characters know Libra, Protect, Shell, and as
many HP augments as possible. This is the trickiest part of the game, but it
doesn't take a genius to see that once this step is complete, the rest of the
game is a breeze.

I recommend that every character have around 2000 HP. To be on the safe side, I
also recommend that you have a healthy supply of Phoenix Downs (maybe 30 or so)
because you'll be using them. Purchase the best armor available in Rabanastre.

When everything is set, go to Nalbina Fortress. Approach the two guards that
block the Mosphoran Highwaste entrance and listen to their babble (hmm, those
names look kind of familiar, no?). Speak to July nearby and hear her end of it
before heading over to Gurdy and renting a chocobo. Now run at the guards again
and pretty soon the way to Mosphoran will be open (and you can eventually get a
Salamand Halcyon from July the next time you see her, which will be when you
reach Archades and go to the Magick Shop). Stay on the chocobo and race through
Mosphoran Highwaste to the Babbling Vale. Save your game and approach Luccio,
the merchant. He has Thief's Cuffs and Golden Amulets for sale. Buy 1 Thief's
Cuffs and 6 Golden Amulets. This sets you back 30000 gil, but doubling your LP
gain for the rest of the game is not a bad trade-off, wouldn't you say? If you
don't have 30000 gil, you should at least have 3000. Just buy the Thief's
Cuffs.

Run through the rest of Mosphoran and into the Salikawood. Head straight for
the Gate Crystal in the middle. Save your game. The Bomb King is one screen
away from you. Put on your game face and head north. The Bomb King will start
out with some minions, so get rid of those first. However, once you've done so,
pull back out to the crystal. The little ones won't be there when you go back
(unless you reload your game or teleport out), so let's consider our options.

If you equip the Thief's Cuffs, you can steal Bomb Shells from the Bomb King.
The best part is, you can steal, exit, re-enter, and the Bomb King's stash will
have renewed itself instantly! Bomb Shells sell for 896 a pop, so you can
easily stand to make 80000-90000 gil in an hour. If you didn't have enough
money to buy the Golden Amulets, definitely stay here and grab enough Bomb
Shells to sell off so you can afford those. Otherwise, it's up to you how
greedy you want to be. Be aware that if you leave the area (to sell your loot
or whatever), the bomb kids will be back, so you should kill them off again
first thing.

However, if you want the Zodiac Spear, you're going to have to kill the Bomb
King. So when you're satisfied with the fatness of your wallet, take a step
back and examine your characters.

You should still have one or more of each of the following: Kotetsu, Gladius,
Demonsbane. Equip as many as you can. As far as your characters go, make sure
that you have at least four characters that know MQs. This shouldn't be an
issue by now, but it's the bare minimum if you want to be safe, and for those
four, it is preferred that at least three of them have attained their Level 2
MQs.

Once your characters are set up, rush in. Hack away at the Bomb King until it
starts to call for help (reviving the little Bombs). This usually happens with
50% to 60% of its health remaining. When you see this, immediately start your
MQs. Sometimes your chain won't kill it immediately. If this happens, you must
not allow the Bomb King to stick around for much longer, since it will cast
Renew to heal itself completely, so swap out one character for your fourth
character with MQs and start another chain, hopefully one that will do enough
damage to finish it off. Obviously, if you have more characters with MQs, you
can repeat this process up to two more times.

That was the hard part. Now for the fun part. Retreat to the save point again
and rotate all of your characters around so that every single one of them has
an active Libra/Protect/Shell. Save your game. Now, reform your party so that
it has only one member.

Run through where the Bomb King previously stood and take the left branch. Keep
heading west and you will enter the Necrohol of Nabudis. This area is filled
with deadly traps and difficult enemies. With your level of equipment, it is
stupid to pick fights in here. That's not why we came, anyway.

Avoid all traps and run from all the enemies. In the first area, keep heading
west while searching for the exit. This is the hardest area to get through,
since Baknamys are extremely aggressive. When you lose a character (and you
will), swap out another one, but ONLY one. This guarantees maximal
survivability. Once you reach the second area, stop to revive, heal, and
recast Libra/Protect/Shell on everyone. Keep running, this time heading
northeast. Eventually you will reach Cloister of the Highborn, the central area
and home to what is for the most part the strongest weapon in the game.

Make a right from where you come in and then the next left. You should be
heading down a corridor heading north. Take the first left; this room should
have sixteen treasure chests in it if you left the right chests alone earlier
in the game. The Zodiac Spear (+150 spear) is in the second chest from the left
in the row closest to you as you enter the room. You will likely have Elvorets
on your tail, so grab the weapon and get out of there. Backtrack through the
first two areas and exit out to the Salikawood. Make your way all the back to
the Gate Crystal. Congratulations!

Take a deeeeeeeeeeeep breath ...

By the way, you can head back into the Necrohol if you're particularly
desperate for Ethers. The Baknamy Merchant sells them at 222 gil each, which is
a great price. Refer to sephirosuy's map for the location of the shop. Keep
in mind that you should come back here later for Magepower Shishaks,
Maximilians, Telekinesis, and Scathe. The first three are available after
Giruvegan, and Scathe is available after the Pharos at Ridorana.

There are a couple of other things we can do, and they're actually kind of
optional, since you flat out don't need anything else to blast on through, but
you should now be able to get the Barheim Key from the South Bank Village in
the Estersand. Talk to Dantro's wife and then head on back around her hut. Her
former patient will give you the Barheim Key. Head to Murmuring Defile to
re-enter the Barheim Passage. Make your way to the Gate Crystal in the middle
of the map.

The credit for this following tidbit goes to goldeneye86. I have more or less
paraphrased (rather minimally) his initial write-up.

Go south one screen. Follow the bending tracks to the right. Take the left path
when the tracks split again. In the next area (Special Op. Sector 5), run past
the Silicon Tortoise and keep going until you see a rock on the right side of
the tracks. On the far side of that rock there will be a chest. If there are
two of them, the silver-looking one is Ithuno. If the silver chest is not
there, reload your game. Examine the silver chest to provoke Ithuno. Let it
chase you all the way back to the entrance of Special Op. Sector 5. At this
point, just keep stealing until you get a Deathbringer (+90 sword). If you need
to heal, go back one screen and heal before returning (Ithuno will still be
there, like the Lindbur Wolf). Don't move back two screens or you will reset
the area. Once you've obtained your Deathbringer, head back to the Gate Crystal
and save your game. Now quit and reload. Repeat the entire process if you want
another one. Rinse and repeat as many times as you like.

goldeneye86 was also kind enough to inform us that you can obtain some very
strong armor from enemies deeper within, or get them through drops. I've looked
through GameFAQs and done some research on my own, and I've compiled the
following as high-powered equipment you can collect in addition to
Deathbringers:

- Dragon Mail (+53 Def, +8 Str) from a chest. Credit GnatB:
Head to the West Annex, which is the zone south of Barheim Passage/The Zeviah
Span, and east of Barheim Passage/Terminus No. 7 Adjunct.

Looking at the map of that section, there's a large area to the east, a
fairly small section to the west, and a thin path that connects the two. The
Dragon Mail is in a chest at the tip of the southwestern "peninsula" of the
large east part. Like most chests, it may or may not be there, and it may
contain the armor, a Knot of Rust, or some gil.

- Cleric's Robes (+37 Def, +9 Mag) from a chest. Credit GnatB:
The Cleric's Robes is in that tiny little bit of the Zeviah Span that's only
accessible from the West Annex.

- Gigas Hat (+38 MDef, +530 HP) as a rare steal from Dead Bones.

- Celebrant's Miter (+50 MDef, +6 Mag, +5 Spd) from a chest. Credit Kimber Boh:
To get the Celebrant's Miter, go to the Zeviah Span, the long, crooked
elevated train track area. The main span there is fractured in the center,
where the train tracks are. The chest with the Celebrant's Miter is on the
SOUTH side (using the auto-map) of the fractured train tracks. The NORTH side
of this chasm has a chest which is always a Mimeo.

- Francisca as a rare drop from Mimeos. Get more of these here if you want to.

spirit_guy_25 has provided me with a nice map for the armor locations:

http://www.geocities.com/arthellinus/barheimchests.jpg

I also don't think it's entirely necessary to get everything because the Zodiac
Spear and Deathbringers are good enough at making the game much easier already.
No matter how good your armor is, the enemies are not going to die any quicker.
I don't see this as an indispensable step, but it's hard to deny that you can
get some incredibly potent stuff here while you're hunting for Deathbringers.
Just be aware that the enemies within are fairly powerful. The area with the
Dragon Mail in particular has a ton of high-powered undead. It may take some
time before you are comfortable surviving here (you could also formulate a
strategy similar to how you ran in to get the Zodiac Spear). However, all of
this takes time that you don't really need to spend. Remember, you'll STILL
need to farm LP so that you can actually use all of this stuff.

***NOTE***
I do realize that if you go into Barheim FIRST and try your luck at getting
Dragon Mails and such, you'll have a much easier time with both the Bomb King
and the Necrohol. However, you'll have to survive Barheim instead. It's up to
you to decide, since I'm not going to rearrange everything because I'm lazy.

Finally, if you want a decent ranged weapon to round out your offense, complete
the "Viera Rendezvous" (or "Viera Lover") sidequest in Rabanastre, which pretty
much consists of running around for 5-10 minutes (minimal effort). Again, you
can check the strategy guide (which erroneously reports that you have to visit
Jahara first; you don't) or any other full walkthrough for details. You'll get
a Loxley Bow (+51 bow), which is fairly nice.

Now your weapons will be unstoppable for quite some time. You might be thinking
something like, "Great! Now time to grind until my PS2 breaks!"

However ...


--------------------
2e. Blitzing, Part 2 [02e]
--------------------

[Timeframe]
From the Zodiac Spear events to Archades.

[Objective]
Blast through everything with your superpowered weapons through to Archades.

[Locations]
Giza Plains, Ozmone Plains, Jahara, Golmore Jungle, Eruyt Village, Henne Mines,
Paramina Rift, Mt. Bur-Omisace, Stilshrine of Miriam, Rabanastre (optional),
Mosphoran Highwaste (optional), Salikawood, Phon Coast, Sochen Cave Palace,
Old Archades, Archades.

[Notables]
Yoichi Bow, Embroidered Tippet x3.

[Procedure]
You heard me.

Why? Because this guide is about efficiency.

We want to get our hands on the Embroidered Tippet as soon as possible to
maximize the amount of experience obtained. Since your party's levels should be
in the mid to upper 30s, you should have little trouble getting through this
portion of the game with the Zodiac Spear and, if you bothered to get them,
your Deathbringers.

The only thing I want to make note of is what you can do after clearing the
Henne Mines. The -ra spells (Fira, Blizzara, Thundara) will be available at
Eruyt Village (as well as Golden Amulets, but you have those already, right?).
This is a good time to head back to Rabanastre for a hunt. If you've been doing
hunts on a regular basis, the bill for White Mousse (Rank V) should be up.
Doing this hunt right now will net you a Yoichi Bow (+76 bow), which is very
useful. The fight is not hard; you have the Zodiac Spear and Fira does a
ridiculous amount of damage to the mark. Now, technically you could have done
this hunt immediately after Raithwall. I put it here because Fira makes the
fight that much easier (I'm talking about 2000 damage per blast).

Otherwise, just make your way to Old Archades. Don't run from fights COMPLETELY
since you can always use more gil. Just fight whatever you see along the way,
while taking the most direct path to your next destination. Take shortcuts if
you can. For instance, you can just teleport from Mt. Bur-Omisace to the
Salikawood with zero hassle. Also, you can give the wayward chocobo north of
the Hunters' Camp a peck of Gysahl Greens and ride it all the way to the Gate
Crystal in the Tchita Uplands. If you don't have any Gysahl Greens, go kill
some Black Chocobos on the Ozmone Plains, or just buy them during an airship
ride (much like how you got Teleport Stones, of which you should still have a
healthy supply).

You can steal Embroidered Tippets from Coeurls in the Tchita Uplands (with
Thief's Cuffs). Thanks to Shane G. for pointing this out. However, I still
recommend that you keep on going until you reach Archades.

Once you arrive at Old Archades, buy some Embroidered Tippets if you don't have
three already. But don't go running off just yet! I recommend that you complete
the events in Archades, which will grant you access to the Gate Crystal. Now,
we can finally have some fun.


---------------
2f. Catching Up [02f]
---------------

[Timeframe]
After accessing the Gate Crystal in Archades and before reaching the Draklor
Laboratory.

[Objective]
Do everything you've been skipping, and doing it very easily. Accumulate lots
of levels and money. Acquire Fomalhaut, as well as most of the requirements for
Ultima Blade.

[Locations]
Anywhere, but specifically Golmore Jungle, the Feywood, Lhusu Mines Site 9,
Dalmasca Westersand and Zertinan Caverns.

[Notables]
Fomalhaut, Gnoma Halcyon x1, Adamantite x1, Death Powder x2, Adrammelech,
High Arcana x4.

[Procedure]
Buy the best armor you can afford in Archades, as well as the Aeroga spell, and
go do whatever you need to do. Hunts, Monographs, all that good stuff. However,
I will focus on the locations I singled out. By the way, just to remind you,
your active members should have Embroidered Tippets equipped at all times,
except when taking down hunts and bosses. Switch to Golden Amulets then. As for
your reserve members, they should have Golden Amulets on all the time.

- Golmore Jungle
With Lente's Tear, enter the southernmost section. Clear out all of the
Coeurls and Hellhounds (and Diresaur) and you will find your second massive
skeleton spawning locale! You can easily manage a 90-chain before having to
exit the area. When you come back, you'll have to kill all the Coeurls, etc.
all over again, but it's worth it. These suckers (the skeletons) give out
950+ Exp each (with three members, and not counting the Embroidered Tippet
effect) and are MUCH easier to kill than any other enemies that give a
similar amount of experience. Just make sure to have a Blindna or Eye Drops
gambit handy, since they use Flash very often. Also, a Grave Lord will
sometimes show up during your skeleton chain. He shouldn't be too bad with
the Zodiac Spear, and the Deathbringer's KO effect works on him. The Sturdy
Bones and Burgeonets dropped make for nice cash, as well. My advice is to
stick around here until you're around Lv 45.

Thanks to gen_esis@yahoo.com for reminding me that you can Phoenix Down these
guys to make things very easy. I don't recommend doing this for the whole
time since you need to spend a bit of gil restocking, but this is efficient
for the first few levels' worth of skeletons. After that, just stick to
attacking regularly to save money, since you should need no more than one
round to take out each skeleton after a few levels. Of course, you can also
cast Cura/Curaga/Raise on them as well. Thanks to koalainusa@hotmail.com for
notifying me of my negligence.

You might be wondering about the Coeurls here. I told you earlier that you
can steal Embroidered Tippets from Coeurls. So right now you might be asking
me why I didn't tell you to simply come here and steal them immediately when
you first gained access to this area. My answer is that according to the
strategy guide, you CANNOT steal Embroidered Tippets from THESE Coeurls. They
must be the ones in the Tchita Uplands. However, we all know that strategy
guides are far from error-free. Please let me know if you absolutely,
positively know that this information is wrong, and I will reconsider some
things if it is indeed incorrect.

- The Feywood (by the way, the music here is great)
Enemies here are a lot harder and only give marginally more experience than
the Golmore skeletons, but the drops here are ridiculously good. In fact, I
will now introduce you to Kairi's "200000 gil in 20 minutes" guide, with
minor editing:

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This requires Lente's Tear. You need this so you can enter through the magic
barriers in the Golmore Jungle. Head south in the Golmore Jungle until you
get into Feywood. Once you get into Feywood, you will be in "The Feywood /
Walk of Flitting Rifts". There are two southern exits; you will want to take
the western one, which is "The Feywood / Walk of Dancing Shadow". Head all
the way south and then to the east, so and zone into the next area, which is
a safe zone with a blue save point crystal. This map is called: "The Feywood
/ Antiquity's End".

When you moved past the southern part of "Walk of Dancing Shadow", you
probably killed a few of the Mirrorknights. These are the guys that you will
be chaining. Locate and get a general sense of where they are, and what you
will be doing is circling the southern part of this map killing all the
Mirrorknights. I prefer to do a clockwise run, starting at the bottom of the
map and going around. Below are the spoils:

Mirrorknights - CHAIN x95

Windslicer Pinion x99 = 113652 gil
Mirror Scale x7 = 13664 gil
Wind Crystal x46 = 7360 gil
Aries Gem x3 = 450 gil
Mirror Mail x19 = 76950 gil
----------------------------------
Total profit = 212076 gil
Total time = 23 minutes

Your time may vary, since my guys are at Lv 68, but when I originally posted
this I was only Lv 50, which is plenty good enough to kill these guys.

(By Kairi)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

- Fomalhaut
Complete the Antlion hunt. The Killer Mantises that swarm you along with the
Antlion can be nuked with Aeroga, since they are weak to Wind. Afterwards,
return to the Lhusu Crystal and save your game. Head back to the place where
the Antlion was. Hopefully there is a chest at the back of the room, and
hopefully it contains Fomalhaut (+50 gun). No Diamond Armlet is needed. If
you don't get it, just reload and try again.

- Ultima Blade
Enter the Westersand while there is a sandstorm. Locate the Gnoma Entite in
the middle section, one screen north of the entrance to the Zertinan Caverns.
Equip the Thief's Cuffs and commence stealing from the Entite. Once your
steal is successful, run towards the western exit and re-enter. The Entite,
which you made hostile, will be neutral again. Furthermore, if what you stole
was NOT a Gnoma Halcyon, you can simply try your luck by stealing again. If
you don't get it, exit and come back, and the Entite will be neutral again.
Repeat this until you get your Gnoma Halcyon. It is one of the ingredients
for Ultima Blade, which we want as soon as possible.

Now for the Zertinan Caverns. Complete the Marilith hunt if you want. Find
the save crystal, which is two screens away from the Athroza Quicksands (if
the minimap becomes blurry, you're in the Athroza Quicksands, so turn around
and get out of there immediately). Now save your game. If you feel pretty
good about your chances (and you should), head into the Athroza Quicksands
and meet Adrammelech (since it's a flying creature, it's a good thing you got
Fomalhaut, right?).

NOTE: It will be worth your while to try to steal High Arcana x4 from the
Esper so you don't have to worry about getting these later. You need 6 of
them for the Tournesol, and you can get 2 for free (see Section 3d). You can
steal from Adrammelech, exit, re-enter to steal again, and repeat the process
until you have enough. The High Arcana is a rare steal, so this might require
some patience, but this is better than having to go out of your way later.

After you've had your way with the Esper, make your way to the western end of
the caverns. There are Bogeys located in both Drybeam Cavern and Darkened
Wharf. Kill these guys until you get two Death Powders. If you were lucky,
you might have stolen one from Ahriman in the Sochen Cave Palace. If so, you
only need one more here.

Finally, complete the Darksteel hunt and you will obtain one Adamantite, so
only one more is needed before the Ultima Blade becomes available. You can't
get it just yet, however.

NOTE: I am aware that there are Adamantitans in the Barheim Passage. However,
according to the strategy guide, these Adamantitans do NOT drop Adamantite
(this is much like my earlier note about the Coeurls in Golmore). Of course,
I'm as skeptical of the strategy guide as the next guy, but I have heard no
news of this being disproven yet.

Don't spend TOO much time leveling. There are better places still. Do what you
need to and let's move on.


--------------------
2g. Clearing Draklor [02g]
--------------------

[Timeframe]
After accessing Gate Crystal in Archades.

[Objective]
Clear Draklor Laboratory.

[Locations]
Draklor Laboratory.

[Notables]
There are none. Just clear Draklor.

[Procedure]
Did I mention that this section just tells you to clear Draklor Laboratory?
This should really take no more than 10-15 minutes, not including cutscenes.


-------------------------
2h. Balfonheim and Beyond [02h]
-------------------------

[Timeframe]
After reaching Balfonheim.

[Objective]
Break open the rest of the game.

[Locations]
Everywhere there is to go.

[Notables]
Everything you haven't gotten yet.

[Procedure]
Could I be more vague? Well, yes ... but barring the best places to level in
the game and one other thing, I leave the rest up to you. I'll make mention of
things worth mentioning.

- Ultima Blade, Finale
Once you can access Cerobi Steppe, you can kill the Adamantitans for the
second piece of Adamantite you need. Alternatively, return to the Phon Coast
and begin the Rare Monster Trophy sidequest. Your very first target,
Thalassinon, has an Adamantite ripe for plucking (stealing, in other words).
Once you have it, congratulations. This is the earliest that you can obtain
Ultima Blade (+118 greatsword). Now you have the Zodiac Spear, Ultima Blade,
and Fomalhaut immediately after you first arrive at Balfonheim. Not bad.

- Leveling to 60-70
Head into the Nabreus Deadlands and find the Gate Crystal (careful, there's a
Crystalbug you have to get rid of first). From the crystal, go south into The
Slumbermead and hug the northern edge of the area. You will see a path that
winds around the back of the second rock you come across that is unmarked on
the map. Follow this trail and you will end up in The Fog Mutters. Keep
moving west and you will enter a small area called Overlooking Eternity.

This is the third and ultimate mass field of skeletons. You can generally
wipe out about 40-45 of them per visit. Return to The Fog Mutters and then
come back, and we have ourselves a party. It has been documented by both
myself and others that with Embroidered Tippet equipped, you can gather about
1200000 Exp (that's 1.2 million) in an hour. The numbers speak for themselves.

That's great, you say, but looking at some other numbers, it would still take
a long time to get your levels REALLY high. Oh well, it can't be that easy,
right?

Right?

- Leveling to 99, Minimal Effort Edition
Go whoop on some Espers if you haven't already. In fact, you could have
chosen to skip the Deadlands altogether and come straight here if you met the
necessary requirements. I'm talking, of course, about the secret area of the
Henne Mines, which you can only unlock after you gather 10 or more Espers AND
complete the Mindflayer hunt. Thanks to goldeneye86 for reminding me about
the Mindflayer.

Naturally, it would be easiest to defeat everything but the three hardest
ones, which are Chaos, Ultima, and Zodiark, so that is what I recommend. And
of course, you can't even reach Zodiark before unlocking this area anyway.

If you don't want to wait that long (i.e. until after the Pharos, since you'd
need Hashmal and Famfrit), you pretty much have to beat Chaos and Ultima
first. Neither is particularly difficult at Lv 70, although you should make
sure you get Telekinesis before you fight Chaos, since the Attack command is
sealed for that fight.

Regardless, if you do some quick counting, you'll realize that this area
cannot be accessed until after you clear Giruvegan and obtain the Treaty-
Blade.

So do your thing however you like and then speak with Geomancer Yugelu in
Jahara to open up this area (he's across from the shop). Before entering this
extremely dangerous place, you must have the following:

- Arise
- Curaja
- Disable OR Sleepga, although Sleepga is preferred
- Bubble
- Protectga
- Float

Faith, Hastega and Shellga are nice, but not necessary.

Teleport to the Henne Crystal. Now cast Protectga, Bubble and Float on your
whole party and start running through Phase 2 Dig (east of where you fought
Tiamat). Head straight all the way to the end, where a Gizamaluk is duking it
out with a couple of Abysteels, and grab the map. You might have to fight the
creeps, but the bats should be weakened and the Gizamaluk is pretty easy. Now
open up the map and locate Pithead Junction C. This is where you want to go,
so keep running all the way until you get there, refreshing Float as is
necessary.

Take a breather for a minute once you reach Pithead Junction C. This is a
very suspicious four-way junction with a blue-red gate switch. The suspicion,
of course, stems from memories of about twenty Jelly enemies dropping down on
you when you hit the switches in other areas of the Henne Mines.

Here, you get to deal with about twenty Lv 65ish Abysteels when you hit the
switch. But that's GOOD news for us. Why?

- Abysteels are undead and therefore can be damaged by healing spells.
- Abysteels are weak to Disable (credit leeboo1211) AND Sleep (credit Garbo).
- At Lv 65, Abysteels give out 3000+ Exp each. That's when you have three
party members. That's without factoring in Embroidered Tippet.

So basically, Disable/Sleepga + three waves of Curaja = tens of thousands of
experience in about 20-30 seconds. The actual numbers come out to something
like 3 million per hour. Believe it!

Of course, keep Bubble and Protectga up at all times because even one bat can
still kill a vulnerable character. However, once your gambits are set, you
don't really have to do much of anything. With your Warmage and Headhunter
augments active, the rate at which you regain MP by beating up on Abysteels
is utterly ridiculous, so MP is essentially a non-issue.

If you want to play it extra safe, buy three Demon Shields from the shop in
Nabudis and equip all of your characters with measures. This will give them
+65 to Evade, so the bats will barely touch you. You can even reasonably risk
not using Disable/Sleepga, although the damage still piles up very quickly if
the bats do hit you. By the way, Abysteels drop Demon Shields themselves, and
you can sell a bunch of them for a huge chunk of cash.

The first time you flip the switch, it will turn from blue to red. After you
kill the Abysteels, take the east exit. Make the first left (it isn't very
far) over to another area. Now double back and head back to the switch room.
Hit the switch again, which makes it go from red back to blue. The Abysteels
come down again. Mop them up and then hit the switch, turning it red again.
Now exit out east, take the first left, return to the switch room, and so on.
Very, very fast.

Well, I can't think of a better note to end on. Happy trails and all that. I
hope that by following this guide, you will be able to do everything in the
game in MUCH less time than if you simply progressed through it normally.


===============================================================================
3. Tips and Tricks [030]
===============================================================================

------------------
3a. The Big Glitch [03a]
------------------

The big glitch in Final Fantasy XII is as follows:

1) During a chain, if the player successfully petrifies an enemy of a different
type that, when defeated normally, would break the chain, the chain will not
be broken once the different enemy type turns to stone. In addition, any
loot dropped by this enemy will match the quality of the loot being dropped
by the chained enemy. For example, if after chaining 60 Hyenas, the loot
being dropped is Level 4 Chain loot (represented by a large golden ball),
petrifying a Wildsnake mandates that any loot dropped by the Wildsnake will
also be of the Level 4 Chain type (i.e. also a large golden ball).
(Credit: ??? <- someone let me know so I can assign proper credit)

2) Furthermore, after the petrified enemy is vanquished, if the player moves
far enough away (e.g. one minimap screen away from its original position),
the petrified enemy will immediately respawn upon returning, without
requiring that the player move two screens away and back.
(Credit: Garbo)

To make a long story short, if you're hunting for those Snake Skins on your way
to get the Tournesol, you can chain a bunch of Hyenas before petrifying the
Wildsnake in the Toam Hills in order to get multiple Snake Skins at once.


-----------------------
3b. Other Helpful Hints [03b]
-----------------------

- Chaining Rare Monsters
Yes, you can chain rare monsters. Obviously, this refers to non-trophy rare
monsters, and more specifically, this only applies to monsters that show up
only as a matter of chance, meaning you don't have to specify certain
conditions like killing x number of monsters of a different type. This is a
good way (good being relative, since it's all still rather painful) to
obtain Grand Helms and Yagyu Darkblades, since those two pieces of equipment
are RARE drops from rare monsters. For details, it's just easier to refer to
my notes on the Yagyu Darkblade, which is in the next sub-section.

- Stealing from Neutrals
If you steal from a neutral enemy (thus making it hostile) and move one
screen away, the enemy will be neutral once you re-enter. Its stash will
also be intact again! This makes stealing those Halcyons from various Entites
much easier, although it's still pretty annoying. I have already referred to
this trick earlier in my discussion of the Ultima Blade.

- Stealing from Rare Trophy Monsters
Since trophy monsters do not reappear once you kill them, and since some of
them have very good loot for stealing, if you need more than one of what they
hold, steal from them, return to a save point, save, reload, steal from them
again, return to the save point, etc (of course, you need to keep at it until
they show up again). This is particularly useful when you are farming
ingredients for the Tournesol.



---------------------
3c. Rare Item Details [03c]
---------------------

This is for all of you lunatics out there who need one of every piece of
equipment or one of every item or something to that effect. Lunatics like me.
This section also contains strategies to obtain SOME of the high-rank Bazaar
trades. I say SOME because I will only discuss the ones where there are various
degrees of shortcuts in obtaining them. The listings in this section are in
ALPHABETICAL order.

When I discuss rare monster in some of the loot-obtaining tricks, I will NOT
go into details on how to actually make them appear. There are other great
resources for that.


Eksir Berries
~~~~~~~~~~~~~
You can return to the place where you got the Eksir Berries before reaching
Raithwall (northeast section of the Nam-Yensa sandsea, where the blue save
crystal is) at some later time. The plant there will have flowered again, and
you can pick some more Eksir Berries.


Elixirs / Hi-Ethers
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
With a Diamond Armlet equipped, many regular treasure chests (that normally
give you insignificant items or amounts of gil) have a 10% chance to reward you
with either an Elixir or a Hi-Ether. Roughly speaking, if you walk around
opening everything in some of the late-game locales while wearing a Diamond
Armlet, you have a chance to get an Elixir or Hi-Ether roughly one out of every
ten chests. The Feywood is especially good for this; almost all of the chests
there hold Elixirs at a 10% chance with Diamond Armlet. Needless to say, this
is also an excellent way to boost your stockpile of Knots of Rust.


Grand Helm
~~~~~~~~~~
The Tower on 88F of the Pharos Third Ascent drops this (rare). You probably had
to fight it on your first trip up. Go back to the Pharos and return to the top.
You can take a bunch of lifts to skip through most of the First and Second
Ascents, but you have to crawl through the entire Third Ascent. It won't take
too long, though.

Now that you're at the top, save your game. Take the looooooong trek back to
the 90F elevator and return to 88F. The Tower won't be here, so take the way
stone to 79F, where you'll end up on the other side of the room with the map
urn for the Third Ascent. Now teleport back to 88F. Keep doing this until the
Tower shows up. Now, if you fight it where you stand, it will fall over the
edge when it dies, essentially putting it "out of bounds". It will NOT drop
anything if this happens. Therefore, because it seems to prefer to target your
leader, move around behind it. This will turn it around. If it doesn't turn
around, manually take control of each of your characters and move all of them
behind the Tower so their backs are against the edge. Now it will fall fully
onto the platform when it dies, enabling it to drop an item.

Once it falls, teleport to 79F again. Turn your gambits off. Run through 79-80F
and run through the entire Third Ascent again back to 88F, skipping all fights
along the way. Unfortunately, you have no choice, because you need to move two
areas away, but the doors enclosing the map urn area are one-way, so once you
teleport back down to the Second Ascent, for example, and return, they will be
closed again, so you can't just go back the way you came. It only takes an
extra minute or two anyway.

The annoying part after coming back to 88F is the shuffling back and forth to
79F using the way stone until the Tower shows up again. However, this is the
only way to chain Towers. Keep going until you get your Grand Helm(s) to fill
out your collection.

In my opinion, though, the Magepower Shishak is better anyway, because you get
a +5 boost to Magick Power at the expense of -1 Magick Defense and -1 Strength.
I'd take that.


Grand Armor
~~~~~~~~~~~
You can get Grand Armors from Helvineks in the Necrohol of Nabudis. To get a
Helvinek to appear, you must kill six Oversouls. The Helvinek will appear after
you kill the last Oversoul. Oversouls show up randomly in the Necrohol, so just
spend some time there to get them to appear. (I know, I know, I said I wouldn't
provide details on how to make rare monsters appear. Well, I guess I feel
generous about this one.)

IndigoSage describes a wonderful trick in order to obtain the Grand Armor,
although he says that he did not originally devise it. In any case, thanks to
IndigoSage for bringing it to my attention. It turns out that you can actually
chain Helvineks, possibly due to some glitch in the game that may or may not be
effective only on the Helvinek, the Darkmare family, or enemies that can
teleport in general (like Bogeys and Oversouls). At the very least, I tried to
pull off the following trick on non-teleporting enemies and it didn't seem to
work.

Anyway, in order to chain Helvineks, kill your six Oversouls and then lure the
Helvinek that pops up to the edge of the screen (as in, to the line separator).
If you kill it and exit the screen BEFORE the Helvinek completely collapses and
you get the Exp/LP indicator on your screen, the Helvinek will IMMEDIATELY
respawn once the next screen loads (essentially following you), with full
health and its bounty replenished for your convenience. You have about two
seconds to grab the loot and exit the screen after each kill, so you'll need to
do some juggling with your party.

Set one of your characters up to be the main attacker. Set another character to
have a high defense and set a Self -> Decoy gambit for this second character.
Turn gambits off for your third character and take control of him. Now, let
your other members do their thing. With the character you have under control,
push up against the Helvinek at all times and nudge him so that he's as close
to the line as possible. Once the Helvinek falls, push up against him some more
and leave just as you grab the loot.

Sometimes the Helvinek will teleport a few steps away. If he doesn't have much
health left when he does this, forget about the loot and concentrate on keeping
the chain alive. Watch for the chain number to appear and leave immediately.
There's no point in risking your chain in this case. Make this a general rule
of thumb. If you're cutting it close, choose the chain over the loot.

Naturally, you should clear the area of any other enemies before you go to work
on the Helvinek. I find that shuffling between the second and third screens
(counting from the Salikawood entrance) is the best. There's a wide staircase
there and you have plenty of room to work with.

But is the Grand Armor worth using? It provides +61 Defense and +12 Strength.
The Maximilian provides +58 Defense, +1 Magick Defense, +9 Strength, and +6
Speed. I'm going to give the nod to the Maximilian here, unless you really are
dying to have that extra +3 Strength. Here are the various combinations for
Magepower Shishak/Maximilian/Grand Helm/Grand Armor.

Heavy Armor 9 ........... +58 Def | +40 MDef | +20 Str | +5 Mag | +6 Spd
Heavy Armor 10 .......... +61 Def | +40 MDef | +24 Str | |
Grand Helm/Maximilian ... +58 Def | +41 MDef | +21 Str | | +6 Spd
MPS/Grand Armor ......... +61 Def | +39 MDef | +23 Str | +5 Mag |

As I've said previously, I greatly prefer the Magepower Shishak to the Grand
Helm (and it should be obvious why), where as the Maximilian vs. Grand Armor
comparison is a bit harder to call. I'm still attracted to the boost to Speed,
but it's up to you.


Koga Blade / Iga Blade
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
There is only a 50% chance that the treasure chest inside the Pilgrim's Door in
the Sochen Cave Palace (you know, the waterfall puzzle) holds the Iga Blade.
Otherwise, you get the Koga Blade. Although you can obtain a Koga Blade from
the Cockatrice sidequest, there is no obvious alternative method to get an Iga
Blade. If you missed out on the chest and you really want an Iga Blade, it is a
rare drop from Bogeys in the Zertinan Caverns. Interestingly enough, Koga
Blades are also rare drops, but from the much tougher Ash Wyrms (Mosphoran
Highwaste, Great Crystal Upper Layer).


Sagittarius
~~~~~~~~~~~
The Sagittarius is the best bow in the game. Buy this from the Bazaar for 60000
gil by selling off Sagittarius Gem x4, Beastlord Horn x3, and Moon Ring x3.

> Sagittarius Gem
+ Steal from Shemhazai.
+ Rare steal from Slime (Zertinan Caverns), Oiling (Stilshrine of Miriam),
Hecteyes (Henne Mines). These are a snap to get from Oilings. Go to the
Stilshrine of Miriam and head to the Ward of the Sword-King (one screen
west of the blue save crystal). Clear out all of the enemies there (Blood
Gigases and usually a Darkmare). Now just hang around and wait near the
southern end of the north-south corridor for a minute or two. Keep your
field of vision south (towards the colossus). Scour the area again to
check for respawning enemies (and kill any you find). Return to your
waiting spot and wait around some more. If you start to move again, you
SHOULD see a new passage on the minimap open up on the west side, around
the central part of the corridor (off the southernmost wall section to
the west). Take this new passage and go up the stairs. Head all the way
to the end and cast Float before you leave the stairs, since there is a
Berserk/Confuse trap waiting for you. Now exit the stairs at the top and
immediately double back. Now, as you head down the steps, Oilings will
drop down en masse. PETRIFY these guys. The trick works. After you've
petrified them, start stealing with Thief's Cuffs. Using the petrify
trick will grant you an unlimited supply of Oilings on these stairs until
you have enough Sagittarius Gems. By the way, if you return to the area
up top (with the Berserk/Confuse trap), there is a chest with a 50%
chance of holding a Shell Shield.

> Beastlord Horn
+ Drops from Humbaba in the Mosphoran Highwaste. The petrify trick works on
these guys as well! Chain Worgens around the Highwaste before using the
trick on the two Humbabas in the southern portion of Summit Path (near
the Estersand entrance). These guys are your prime targets because there
will be little clutter once you clear the other enemies in the area,
which should be just Worgens. Easy pickings.

> Moon Ring
+ Reward for Ring Wyrm hunt.
+ Drops from Ash Wyrm (Mosphoran Highwaste summit after Exodus is defeated,
Great Crystal Upper Layer). You can try your luck with the Ash Wyrm at
Mosphoran, but there is only one there and you can't chain or petrify it.
It's easier to wait until you gain access to the Great Crystal Upper
Layer. Referring to sephirosuy's map on GameFAQs, the best place to fight
the Ash Wyrm is the four-way junction north of the Capricorn Gate. Kill
the first one, then head south and east (past the Capricorn Gate) and
return to the junction to find another Ash Wyrm to continue your chain.


Scorpion Tail
~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The Scorpion Tail is the best melee breaker (axe/hammer) in the game. Buy this
from the Bazaar for 60000 gil by selling off Scorpio Gem x4, Wyrm Bone x3,
and Charged Gizzard x3.

> Scorpio Gem
+ Drops from Gargoyle Baron (Giruvegan). If you want to chain, use the area
just past the first blue save crystal (the screen where you eventually
encounter the Tyrant). Double two screens back towards the entrance to
reset the area.
+ Steal from rare monster Larva Eater (Great Crystal Upper Layer, XIII and
XIV way stones).

> Wyrm Bone
+ Drops/steal from Skulwyrm (Zertinan Caverns, Great Crystal Upper Layer).
These are pretty easy to get. In Zertinan, Skulwyrms appear west of the
Athroza Quicksands (where Adrammelech is).

> Charged Gizzard
+ Drops/steal from Thunderbug (Henne Mines). For the quickest method to get
them, head one screen east from the Gate Crystal. Circle around to the
southwestern corner of that area. There should be two Thunderbugs there
(remember, they're mimics). Steal from them and kill them, then run back
up north to where you fought Tiamat (two screens away), which resets the
area. Now rinse and repeat.


Stone Shot
~~~~~~~~~~
These is the best gun ammunition in the game. Buy this from the Bazaar for
15000 gil by selling off Libra Gem x3, Mirror Scale x2, Tyrant Bone x2.

> Libra Gem
+ Drops from many enemies that also drop pelts (Wolf Pelt, Quality Pelt,
and so on). To be more specific, you can get them from Tartarus (Feywood,
north of the save crystal) and Ose (Great Crystal), for example.

> Mirror Scale
+ Drops from Mirrorknights (Feywood). Mirrorknights have already been
detailed in the walkthrough as a great way to make money, so getting
Mirror Scales should be no problem.

> Tyrant Bone
+ Drops from Wild Saurian (Dalmasca Estersand).
+ Steal from Pylraster. I recommend that you do this. Teleport to the
Pharos Gate Crystal. If you accepted the Pylraster hunt, your mark will
be just outside the tower. Exit, steal from him, re-enter the tower, exit
again, steal again, etc. It's a semi-rare steal, but it shouldn't take
too long.


Tournesol
~~~~~~~~~
The Tournesol is the strongest two-handed sword in the game and has the unique
property of having a higher combo rate than any other greatsword. Buy this from
the Bazaar for 600000 gil by selling off Serpentarius x3, Empyreal Soul x3, and
Gemsteel x3. As you examine the following lists, I highly suggest that you
repeatedly steal from rare trophy monsters when you can, since they will be
GUARANTEED steals. Refer to Section 3c, "Stealing from Rare Trophy Monsters",
for details.

Regarding these first three "primary" ingredients, you can buy them from the
Bazaar more than once. You should be able to infer this since, for example, I
have said that you need Gemsteel x3, yet I have only provided two ways to get
Gemsteels. Anyway ...

> Serpentarius
+ Obtain from Montblanc when you control all 13 Espers.
+ Steal from Zodiark.
+ Buy "Jewel of the Serpent" at the Bazaar after selling High Arcana x1,
Snake Skin x4, Serpent Eye x2 (see info on secondary items below).

> Empyreal Soul
+ Obtain from Montblanc after reaching the "High Guardian" clan rank.
+ Buy "Jewel of Creation" at the Bazaar after selling High Arcana x1,
Soul Powder x1, Wargod's Band x2 (see info on secondary items below).

> Gemsteel
+ Obtain from Montblanc when you control 8 Espers.
+ Buy "Matchless Metal" at the Bazaar after selling Scarletite x1,
Damascus Steel x2, Hell-Gate's Flame x2 (see info on secondary items
below).

As for the secondary items:

> High Arcana
+ Obtain from Montblanc after reaching the "Paragon of Justice" clan rank.
+ Obtain from Montblanc when you control 4 Espers.
+ Drops from rare monsters after obtaining Canopic Jar.
+ Rare steal from any Esper. As I have detailed in the walkthrough (Section
2f), it is easiest to repeatedly steal from Adrammelech until you have
enough. Credit to JonathanEyoon for making me aware that you can run from
Adrammelech.
+ Buy "Life Crystal" at the Bazaar after selling Arcana x10, Feystone x1,
Soul of Thamasa x2.
* Arcana
: Drops from any regular monster after obtaining Canopic Jar.
* Feystone
: Steal from any Entite.
: Steal from any Crystalbug.
* Soul of Thamasa
: Reward for Deathscythe hunt.
: Drops from Oversoul (Necrohol of Nabudis, random).
: Steal from rare trophy monster Ishteen (Barheim Passage, The Zeviah
Span).

> Snake Skin
+ Drops/steal from Wildsnake (Giza Plains Dry, Toma Hills). This is the
ONLY place that I know of where there's a Wildsnake, and there is ONLY
the one that is there. I suggest that you either run through the nomad
camp to the east and then back again to make it respawn or chain some
Hyenas and then use the petrify trick.

> Serpent Eye
+ Reward for Marilith hunt.
+ Drops from Basilisk (Feywood, any area south of Redolent Glade where you
fight Rafflesia).

> Soul Powder
+ Reward for Ixtab hunt.
+ Drops from Etem (Henne Mines secret area).
+ Steal from rare trophy monster Vorres (Necrohol of Nabudis, Hall of the
Ivory Covenant).

> Wargod's Band
+ Drops from Leynir (Nabreus Deadlands). There is a group of three just
north of the Gate Crystal. You can chain them, move two areas south past
the crystal, head back and chain some more. Sometimes a fourth or fifth
Leynir will run over from the western part of the area. Don't be in a
rush to head over there yourself, since two Baknamys are in the way.
+ Steal from rare trophy monster Victanir (Nam-Yensa Sandsea, Yellow
Sands). Unlike for other rare items, I don't really recommend that you
opt for the stealing route with Wargod's Bands. Chaining Leynirs is
pretty painless and will give you quite a bit of experience as well as a
large chunk of gil after selling their drops.

> Scarletite
+ Drops from Emeralditan (Nabreus Deadlands).
+ Steal from rare trophy monster Aspidochelon (Cerobi Steppe, Feddik
River).

> Damascus Steel
+ Drops from Bune (Pharos).
+ Steal from rare trophy monster Bluesang (Cerobi Steppe, Crossfield).
+ Steal from rare monster Anchag (Paramina Rift, Karydine Glacier).

> Hell-Gate's Flame
+ Drops from Cerberus (Feywood, areas north of the save crystal). Tartarus
and Cerberus are the same family of monsters, so you can use both to
chain if you want.

Phew. Pretty ugly, ain't it?


Yagyu Darkblade (YD for short)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Complete the Antlion hunt and head to the Phon Coast after unlocking the
Ancient Man of Mystery hunt (you should wait until you're Lv 65-70 because of
the ramp up in difficulty). Don't accept the hunt just yet. Now, at the Phon
Coast, near the western end of the Hunters' Camp, there will be a Bhujerban
who apparently fell from Bhujerba and (...) survived. Anyway, pick up the Site
11 Key next to him and teleport to the Lhusu Crystal, which you should have
passed on the way to Antlion. Now unlock Site 11 and make your way to the
Lasche Span.

Of course, if you've already done the hunt when you read this, then whatever.
If you accepted it but haven't completed it, you'll have to fight a battle just
west of the Gate Crystal before you move on. Make sure you steal the Genji
Shield (after the mark is down to 40% health) and Genji Gloves (after the mark
is down to 20%) during this fight. You won't complete the hunt here. When you
do go to complete it (much deeper into the mines, past the Lasche Span), make
sure you steal again at these intervals during the second fight for the Genji
Helm and Genji Armor. But I digress.

At the Lasche Span, you should see two Lv 60 Aeronites (very tough) and
possibly Bombshell. Bombshell is the guy we want. If you don't see him, skip to
the next paragraph. If you do see him, kill him but do NOT kill the Aeronites.
This starts your chain of Bombshells. You can adjust your gambits by setting
your target to Foe: water-weak. If he drops a YD, then you are one lucky son of
a submariner. If you kill Bombshell and he doesn't drop it, retreat to Site 9
(two screens away) via the shortcut that you should have opened (i.e. the upper
entrance) and return. If Bombshell is there, repeat the process. If not, read
on.

Now run straight through the Lasche Span to Site 5. Turn off your gambits and
start holding down on your analog stick without changing the camera. This means
that you will start shuffling back and forth between the Lasche Span and Site
5. Do this for about half a minute to one minute (you might as well find
something else to do while you're doing this). Head back to the Lasche Span and
run through it. I can virtually guarantee you that the Bombshell will be there
again. Lure it towards one end of the screen (so that the Aeronites will
hopefully leave you alone) and turn on your gambits again. Kill it and your
chain will go up by 1 ...

It took me 2 hours and 21 minutes before he dropped 3 YDs all at once on the
27th try. I hope you have better luck than I did. However, I did not start
following my own method until around the last half hour or so. I estimate that
it takes about 5 minutes to kill one Bombshell, head to Site 9, come all the
way back and then do the entering and leaving thing for a bit.

Here's the explanation. After the enemies on the Lasche Span are completely
reset, which involves moving two screens away, the Bombshell has a chance of
spawning every time you enter the area. You can exit and re-enter until he
shows up. Once he DOES show up, he will NOT disappear if you move one screen
away. If you move two screens away, he MIGHT disappear because you've reset the
Lasche Span again. Hopefully, this makes sense.

So basically, if you keep exiting and re-entering, Bombshell will show up
eventually. Once he's there, he'll stay there.

Now that you know this, you can chain any non-trophy random-spawning rare
monster you want. Of course, the only other one you really need to bother with
is the Tower in the Pharos, which I covered above. Also, you can't really apply
this method to chaining Towers anyway.

Note that I chose to run in and out of Site 5 instead of Site 11 because Site 5
loads much faster, for some reason.


Zodiac Escutcheon / Brave Suit
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
(in reference to sephirosuy's Great Crystal Upper Layer map on GameFAQs)
The treasure chest behind the Taurus II gate holds either a Zodiac Escutcheon
or a Brave Suit. My advice is to definitely go for the shield. The one in
Barheim is horrendously annoying to get, where as the other Brave Suit in the
Henne Mines secret area is a guaranteed reward from a chest that has a 25%
chance of appearing, which isn't too bad.



-------------------
3d. Character Stats [03d]
-------------------

Here is a breakdown of stat growth for the party members, taken from the
strategy guide. These are base stats and do not take into account Quickening
cartridges or augment licenses. The abbreviations should be obvious.

Vaan
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| LV | HP | MP | St | Ma | Vi | Sp |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| 1 | 82-84 | 25-27 | 23 | 20 | 24 | 24 |
| 10 | 282-316 | 40-51 | 28 | 24 | 27 | 25 |
| 20 | 645-742 | 62-89 | 33 | 28 | 31 | 26 |
| 30 | 1111-1293 | 84-127 | 39 | 33 | 35 | 28 |
| 40 | 1552-1814 | 111-176 | 44 | 37 | 39 | 29 |
| 50 | 2257-2650 | 134-217 | 50 | 42 | 42 | 31 |
| 60 | 2878-3387 | 156-255 | 55 | 46 | 46 | 32 |
| 70 | 3230-3802 | 172-282 | 61 | 51 | 50 | 33 |
| 80 | 3637-4281 | 188-309 | 66 | 55 | 54 | 35 |
| 90 | 4192-4938 | 199-325 | 72 | 60 | 57 | 36 |
| 99 | 4818-5681 | 204-330 | 77 | 64 | 61 | 37 |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----

Balthier
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| LV | HP | MP | St | Ma | Vi | Sp |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| 2 | 99-103 | 20-22 | 25 | 17 | 24 | 24 |
| 10 | 277-311 | 32-41 | 29 | 20 | 27 | 25 |
| 20 | 630-725 | 51-75 | 34 | 24 | 31 | 26 |
| 30 | 1084-1261 | 71-109 | 39 | 28 | 34 | 28 |
| 40 | 1513-1768 | 95-153 | 44 | 32 | 38 | 29 |
| 50 | 2198-2581 | 115-189 | 50 | 36 | 41 | 31 |
| 60 | 2803-3299 | 134-223 | 55 | 40 | 45 | 32 |
| 70 | 3146-3702 | 149-247 | 60 | 44 | 48 | 34 |
| 80 | 3542-4168 | 163-271 | 65 | 48 | 52 | 35 |
| 90 | 4082-4808 | 173-285 | 71 | 52 | 55 | 37 |
| 99 | 4691-5531 | 177-289 | 75 | 56 | 58 | 38 |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----

Fran
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| LV | HP | MP | St | Ma | Vi | Sp |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| 2 | 85-89 | 25-27 | 23 | 18 | 20 | 23 |
| 10 | 256-288 | 38-49 | 27 | 22 | 23 | 24 |
| 20 | 594-685 | 60-88 | 32 | 26 | 26 | 25 |
| 30 | 1029-1199 | 83-127 | 37 | 30 | 30 | 27 |
| 40 | 1440-1684 | 110-177 | 42 | 34 | 33 | 28 |
| 50 | 2097-2464 | 134-218 | 47 | 39 | 36 | 30 |
| 60 | 2677-3151 | 156-257 | 52 | 43 | 40 | 31 |
| 70 | 3005-3538 | 172-284 | 57 | 47 | 43 | 32 |
| 80 | 3385-3985 | 189-312 | 62 | 51 | 46 | 34 |
| 90 | 3902-4598 | 200-328 | 67 | 55 | 50 | 35 |
| 99 | 4486-5290 | 205-333 | 71 | 59 | 53 | 36 |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----

Basch
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| LV | HP | MP | St | Ma | Vi | Sp |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| 3 | 138-145 | 19-22 | 26 | 21 | 20 | 23 |
| 10 | 306-340 | 28-37 | 30 | 23 | 22 | 24 |
| 20 | 673-772 | 46-68 | 35 | 27 | 25 | 25 |
| 30 | 1146-1330 | 64-99 | 40 | 31 | 28 | 26 |
| 40 | 1593-1858 | 86-139 | 46 | 35 | 31 | 28 |
| 50 | 5307-2706 | 105-172 | 51 | 39 | 34 | 29 |
| 60 | 2937-3453 | 122-203 | 56 | 43 | 36 | 30 |
| 70 | 3294-3873 | 132-225 | 62 | 47 | 39 | 31 |
| 80 | 3706-4359 | 149-247 | 67 | 51 | 42 | 33 |
| 90 | 4269-5025 | 157-260 | 72 | 55 | 45 | 34 |
| 99 | 4903-5778 | 161-264 | 77 | 58 | 47 | 35 |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----

Ashe
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| LV | HP | MP | St | Ma | Vi | Sp |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| 3 | 100-106 | 31-34 | 22 | 22 | 24 | 23 |
| 10 | 253-284 | 43-54 | 26 | 25 | 26 | 24 |
| 20 | 589-679 | 66-94 | 31 | 30 | 29 | 25 |
| 30 | 1020-1189 | 89-135 | 36 | 35 | 33 | 26 |
| 40 | 1428-1671 | 117-186 | 42 | 40 | 36 | 28 |
| 50 | 2081-2445 | 142-220 | 47 | 45 | 40 | 29 |
| 60 | 2656-3127 | 165-270 | 52 | 50 | 43 | 30 |
| 70 | 2982-3511 | 182-298 | 58 | 55 | 47 | 32 |
| 80 | 3359-3955 | 199-327 | 63 | 60 | 50 | 33 |
| 90 | 3872-4563 | 210-344 | 68 | 65 | 53 | 34 |
| 99 | 4452-5251 | 216-349 | 73 | 69 | 57 | 36 |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----

Penelo
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| LV | HP | MP | St | Ma | Vi | Sp |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----
| 1 | 65-66 | 36-37 | 20 | 18 | 23 | 24 |
| 10 | 244-275 | 51-62 | 25 | 23 | 26 | 25 |
| 20 | 570-658 | 73-100 | 30 | 28 | 30 | 26 |
| 30 | 989-1153 | 95-140 | 35 | 33 | 34 | 27 |
| 40 | 1385-1621 | 123-189 | 40 | 38 | 38 | 29 |
| 50 | 2018-2372 | 146-231 | 45 | 43 | 41 | 30 |
| 60 | 2577-3035 | 168-270 | 50 | 48 | 45 | 31 |
| 70 | 2894-3407 | 185-297 | 55 | 54 | 49 | 32 |
| 80 | 3259-3838 | 201-325 | 60 | 59 | 53 | 34 |
| 90 | 3758-4428 | 212-341 | 65 | 64 | 56 | 35 |
| 99 | 4321-5096 | 217-346 | 70 | 69 | 60 | 36 |
---- ----------- --------- ---- ---- ---- ----


Alternatively, here's another way to look at it. For the equals signs, the
character that is listed first holds a slight edge when considering stats at
ALL levels.

HP: Basch > Vaan > Balthier >> Fran > Ashe > Penelo
MP: Penelo = Ashe > Fran = Vaan >> Balthier >> Basch
Str: Basch = Vaan > Balthier > Ashe > Fran > Penelo
Mag: Ashe = Penelo > Vaan > Fran > Basch > Balthier
Vit: Vaan = Penelo > Balthier > Ashe > Fran > Basch
Spd: Balthier > Vaan > Penelo = Fran = Ashe > Basch

As previously mentioned, there are ways to permanently increase stats via the
License Board.

Battle Lore: +1 Str (x5) = +5 Str
Magick Lore: +1 Mag (x5) = +5 Mag
HP Augment: +50, +100, +150, +200, +500 HP = +1000 HP
MP Augment: Max MP doubles after 2 MQs obtained, triples after 3 MQs obtained.
Implicit Augments: Swiftness (x3) and Spellbound effectively increase relevant
Speed and Vitality parameters respectively.


===============================================================================
4. Analysis [040]
===============================================================================

Filling in this section will undoubtedly require a lot of tedium, as well as
messing with numbers and statistics. I'd like nothing more than to be able to
do it on my own, but I DO have other priorities. Also, even if I end up doing
all of these tests myself (which I wouldn't bet on), it would be nice to have
another set of tests to make sure that the data is consistent. Any help with
this stuff would be greatly appreciated.

There is quite a bit of math here. I think the explanations I have provided
should be clear enough for those of you who have an interest in this stuff. DO
NOT write me to ask me to explain any of this stuff if you don't understand it
UNLESS I have VERY OBVIOUSLY neglected to spell something out.


----------------
4a. Weapon Speed [04a]
----------------

Here, I used a stopwatch to time the time it takes for the bar to fill up for
physical attacks using each weapon type. I started once I saw "Attack" being
displayed and timed it to stop once I saw the damage being dealt.

Anyway, here are the results for each weapon type. Stats to keep in mind are:

- Speed stat for the character doing the trials is at 35.
- All three Swiftness augments learned.
- Slowest battle speed.
- Average times rounded off to two decimal places.

I'll group them by what I think are the significant separations. The weapons
listed under one particular group should be considered to have equivalent
speed, although I will list the specific numbers that I obtained. The weapon in
parentheses is what I used to test each different type.

> Class I (Fastest)
Dagger (Zwill Crossblade) / 2.17 seconds average (10 trials)
Ninja Sword (Koga Blade) / 2.21

> Class II
Spear (Zodiac Spear) / 2.43
Unarmed / 2.47

> Class III
Pole (Whale Whisker) / 2.61
Katana (Masamune) / 2.61
Axe (Golden Axe) / 2.62
Greatsword (Excalibur) / 2.64

> Class IV
Crossbow (Gastrophetes) / 2.76

> Class V
Rod (Holy Rod) / 2.87
Measure (Caliper) / 2.87
Mace (Zeus Mace) / 2.88
Staff (Cloud Staff) / 2.89
Hammer (Morning Star) / 2.91

> Class VI
1H Sword (Deathbringer) / 3.26
Bow (Sagittarius) / 3.28

> Class VII
Hand-Bomb (Volcano) / 3.49

> Class VIII (Slowest)
Gun (Fomalhaut) / 4.43

The speeds seem to hold for all weapons of each weapon type. Obviously, the
Wyrmhero Blade is an exception, but I haven't gotten it yet.

Comment: I was very surprised at how slow one-handed swords and bows were. It
seems that in the overall scheme of things, bows aren't very good. But it's
still too early to say for sure.

To calculate new times based on the different speed settings in the Config
menu, use this formula:

(Time shown above) x (0.87)^n

where "n" is a number corresponding to the setting intervals. n = 0 for Slow,
and n = 5 for Fast. Again, I am referring to the Config menu. If you just want
to know what things will be like on the fastest setting, take the numbers shown
above and multiply by 0.55.

If you have no Swiftness augments learned, your new results will be 10/7 times
the numbers shown above. The multiplier could also be 100/73, since I'm not
sure if Swiftness is cumulative, but it shouldn't make that big of a
difference, especially since I'm sure most of us use the faster speed settings.
I will go with 10/7 as the multiplier for now.

Here is a chart that separates and extrapolates the data for the different
settings. You will likely be most concerned with the last two columns. All
numbers are times in seconds.

------- ------------- ------ ------ ------ ------
| Class | Weapon | S/NS | F/NS | S/AS*| F/AS |
======= ============= ====== ====== ====== ======
| I | Dagger | 3.10 | 1.70 | 2.17 | 1.19 |
| | Ninja Sword | 3.16 | 1.74 | 2.21 | 1.22 |
------- ------------- ------ ------ ------ ------
| II | Spear | 3.48 | 1.91 | 2.43 | 1.34 |
| | Unarmed | 3.53 | 1.94 | 2.47 | 1.36 |
------- ------------- ------ ------ ------ ------
| III | Pole | 3.72 | 2.05 | 2.61 | 1.43 |
| | Katana | 3.73 | 2.05 | 2.61 | 1.44 |
| | Axe | 3.75 | 2.06 | 2.62 | 1.44 |
| | Greatsword | 3.77 | 2.07 | 2.64 | 1.45 |
------- ------------- ------ ------ ------ ------
| IV | Crossbow | 3.94 | 2.17 | 2.76 | 1.52 |
------- ------------- ------ ------ ------ ------
| V | Rod | 4.10 | 2.26 | 2.87 | 1.58 |
| | Measure | 4.10 | 2.26 | 2.87 | 1.58 |
| | Mace | 4.12 | 2.26 | 2.88 | 1.58 |
| | Staff | 4.12 | 2.27 | 2.89 | 1.59 |
| | Hammer | 4.15 | 2.28 | 2.91 | 1.60 |
------- ------------- ------ ------ ------ ------
| VI | Sword | 4.65 | 2.56 | 3.26 | 1.79 |
| | Bow | 4.69 | 2.58 | 3.28 | 1.80 |
------- ------------- ------ ------ ------ ------
| VII | Hand-Bomb | 4.99 | 2.75 | 3.49 | 1.92 |
------- ------------ ------ ------ ------ -------
| VIII | Gun | 6.32 | 3.48 | 4.43 | 2.43 |
------- ------------- ------ ------ ------ ------

S/NS = slowest battle speed, no Swiftness augments
F/NS = fastest battle speed, no Swiftness augments
S/AS = slowest battle speed, all Swiftness augments
F/AS = fastest battle speed, all Swiftness augments

* = column of original data



-----------------
4b. Weapon Damage [04b]
-----------------

Before we get into any numbers, let's lay out the basics as they are provided
by official documentation. Each weapon type depend on certain factors in
determing how much damage is done when it is used. I would like to credit Aeana
from GAF for originally posting a general damage formula from the FFXII Battle
Ultimania, which has been helpful in my quest to come up with a coherent
general damage formula.

First, let's define some variables for usage in our formulas.

D = net damage done
x = the attacker's weapon's Attack rating
y = the target's Defense rating
y' = the target's Magick Defense rating
r = randomness factor, defined by the Ultimania to have a MINIMUM value of
1 and a MAXIMUM value of 1.125
r' = randomness factor, defined by ffsky.com to have a MINIMUM value of 0
and a MAXIMUM value of 1.111
z = cumulative status modifier, takes a default value of 1 with no statuses
in effect
STR = the attacker's Strength
MAG = the attacker's Magick Power
VIT = the attacker's Vitality
SPD = the attacker's Speed
LV = the attacker's Level

Now let's designate the different types of weapons. These groupings are
fundamentally different from the ones for weapon speed, even though there are
also eight of them.


==================== ===================================================
| Weapon Type | Damage Formula |
==================== ===================================================
| Group 1 | |
| > Swords | |
| > Greatswords | |
| > Spears | |
| > Rods (except for | D = (x*r-y) * [1 + 1/256 * STR * (LV+STR)] * z |
| Healing Rod and | |
| Rod of Faith) | |
| > Crossbows | |
| | |
-------------------- ---------------------------------------------------
| Group 2 | |
| > Poles | D = (x*r-y') * [1 + 1/256 * STR * (LV+STR)] * z |
| | |
-------------------- ---------------------------------------------------
| Group 3 | |
| > Maces | D = (x*r-y) * [1 + 1/256 * MAG * (LV+MAG)] * z |
| | |
-------------------- ---------------------------------------------------
| Group 4 | |
| > Katanas | D = (x*r-y) * [1 + 1/256 * STR * (LV+MAG)] * z |
| > Staves | |
-------------------- ---------------------------------------------------
| Group 5 | |
| > Daggers | |
| > Ninja Swords | D = (x*r-y) * [1 + 1/218 * STR * (LV+SPD)] * z |
| > Bows | |
| | |
-------------------- ---------------------------------------------------
| Group 6 | |
| > Axes | |
| > Hammers | D = (x*r'-y) * [1 + 1/128 * STR * (LV+VIT)] * z |
| > Hand-bombs | |
| | |
-------------------- ---------------------------------------------------
| Group 7 | |
| > Guns | |
| > Measures | D = (x*r)^2 * z |
| > Healing Rod | |
| > Rod of Faith | |
-------------------- ---------------------------------------------------
| Group 8 | |
| > Unarmed | INCOMPLETE |
| | |
-------------------- ---------------------------------------------------


Note that if you do a test run and average out the damage done by a string of
hits using one weapon type, you will see that the value of r averages out to
around 1.0625, or exactly halfway between the minimum and maximum values.

What's left? Well, we can go over the values that z might take on. These are
cumulative, so effects stack. For example, if the attacker has Bravery and the
target has Protect, the value of z would be 1.3 * 0.7 = 0.91.


========================= ========================
| Status in Effect | Value of z |
========================= ========================
| Bravery (attacker) | 1.3 |
------------------------- -----------------------
| Berserk (attacker) | 1.5 |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Critical* (attacker) | 2.0 |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Focus< (attacker) | 1.2 |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Adrenaline@ (attacker) | 2.0 |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Petrify (attacker) | 0.1 * (time remaining) |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Elemental Enhancement | |
| (attacker) | 1.5 |
| - e.g. from Staves | |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Protect+ (target) | 0.7 |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Last Stand$ (target) | 0.5 |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Sleep (target) | 1.5 |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Oil (target) | |
| - vs. Fire Magick only | 3.0 |
| | |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Petrify (target) | 0.1 * (time remaining) |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Elem. Weakness (target) | 2.0 |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Resistance (target) | 0.5 |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Immune (target) | 0.0 |
------------------------- ------------------------
| Absorb (target) | -1.0 |
------------------------- ------------------------

* Refers to a critical hit by a ranged weapon.
< Bonus damage at full HP (license).
@ Bonus damage at critical HP (license).
+ Shell if the attacker is using a Group 2 weapon.
$ Defense boost at critical HP (license).


Credit maltzsan for finding these formulas and translating them from:
http://bbs.ffsky.com/ShowJH.aspx?ID=9583

The preceding charts are accurate according to tests that I have performed,
which have been rather numerous.

However, I shall not neglect to give special thanks to rmdsc for coming up with
a different formula (after collaborating with my data) that actually also fits
the data pretty well. His effort definitely deserves recognition.


----------------------------------
4c. Character-Weapon Proficiencies [04c]
----------------------------------

Now that you know how much damage physical attacks do, you might be wondering
who is best at what weapon. Well, wonder no more. Let's revisit our character
stat tables. HP and MP are not considered because they are irrelevant. New
columns detailing the base modifiers for each weapon type have been added.
These columns are labeled "BM#", where BM stands for "base modifier" and the #
designates the weapon group in question (as denoted from the charts in

Section
4b). I will arrange the new tables in terms of LEVELS so you can effectively
compare characters. The first table will be at Level 10, since that is the
first level at which all six characters can be compared without ambiguity.

When I say "base modifier", I am referring to the factor in the damage formula
that depends on a character's base statistics. For example, in the case of
Group 1 weapons, the base modifier is:

BM1 = [1 + 1/256 * STR * (LV+STR)]

Obviously, you want the highest BM value as possible. There is no BM value for
Group 7 weapons, and no damage formula has been finalized for Group 8 weapons,
so there will be no BM7 or BM8 columns. Also, BM1 and BM2 are identical. I have
kept the distinction for organizational purposes.


Physical Damage Modifiers by Level
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Lv 10 | St | Ma | Vi | Sp | BM1 | BM2 | BM3 | BM4 | BM5 | BM6 |
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Vaan | 28 | 24 | 27 | 25 | 5.16 | 5.16 | 4.19 | 4.72 | 5.50 | 4.55 |
| Balth | 29 | 20 | 27 | 25 | 5.42 | 5.42 | 3.34 | 4.40 | 5.66 | 4.69 |
| Fran | 27 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 4.90 | 4.90 | 3.75 | 4.38 | 5.21 | 3.98 |
| Basch | 30 | 23 | 22 | 24 | 5.69 | 5.69 | 3.96 | 4.87 | 5.68 | 4.25 |
| Ashe | 26 | 25 | 26 | 24 | 4.66 | 4.66 | 4.42 | 4.55 | 5.06 | 4.16 |
| Pen | 25 | 23 | 26 | 25 | 4.42 | 4.42 | 3.96 | 4.22 | 5.01 | 4.02 |
------- ---- ---- ---- ---- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------

======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Lv 20 | St | Ma | Vi | Sp | BM1 | BM2 | BM3 | BM4 | BM5 | BM6 |
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Vaan | 33 | 28 | 31 | 26 | 7.83 | 7.83 | 6.25 | 7.19 | 7.96 | 7.07 |
| Balth | 34 | 24 | 31 | 26 | 8.17 | 8.17 | 5.13 | 6.84 | 8.17 | 7.27 |
| Fran | 32 | 26 | 26 | 25 | 7.50 | 7.50 | 5.67 | 6.75 | 7.61 | 6.25 |
| Basch | 35 | 27 | 25 | 25 | 8.52 | 8.52 | 5.96 | 7.43 | 8.22 | 6.65 |
| Ashe | 31 | 30 | 29 | 25 | 7.18 | 7.18 | 6.86 | 7.05 | 7.40 | 6.43 |
| Pen | 30 | 28 | 30 | 26 | 6.86 | 6.86 | 6.25 | 6.63 | 7.33 | 6.36 |
------- ---- ---- ---- ---- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------

======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Lv 30 | St | Ma | Vi | Sp | BM1 | BM2 | BM3 | BM4 | BM5 | BM6 |
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Vaan | 39 | 33 | 35 | 28 | 11.51 | 11.51 | 9.12 | 10.60 | 11.38 | 10.40 |
| Balth | 39 | 28 | 34 | 28 | 11.51 | 11.51 | 7.34 | 9.84 | 11.38 | 10.25 |
| Fran | 37 | 30 | 30 | 27 | 10.68 | 10.68 | 8.03 | 9.67 | 10.67 | 9.17 |
| Basch | 40 | 31 | 28 | 26 | 11.94 | 11.94 | 8.39 | 10.53 | 11.28 | 9.56 |
| Ashe | 36 | 35 | 33 | 26 | 10.28 | 10.28 | 9.89 | 10.14 | 10.25 | 9.36 |
| Pen | 35 | 33 | 34 | 27 | 9.89 | 9.89 | 9.12 | 9.61 | 10.15 | 9.25 |
------- ---- ---- ---- ---- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------

======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Lv 40 | St | Ma | Vi | Sp | BM1 | BM2 | BM3 | BM4 | BM5 | BM6 |
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Vaan | 44 | 37 | 39 | 29 | 15.44 | 15.44 | 12.13 | 14.23 | 14.93 | 14.08 |
| Balth | 44 | 32 | 38 | 29 | 15.44 | 15.44 | 10.00 | 13.38 | 14.93 | 13.91 |
| Fran | 42 | 34 | 33 | 28 | 14.45 | 14.45 | 10.83 | 13.14 | 14.10 | 12.48 |
| Basch | 46 | 35 | 31 | 28 | 16.45 | 16.45 | 11.25 | 14.48 | 15.35 | 13.26 |
| Ashe | 42 | 40 | 36 | 28 | 14.45 | 14.45 | 13.50 | 14.13 | 14.10 | 12.97 |
| Pen | 40 | 38 | 38 | 29 | 13.50 | 13.50 | 12.58 | 13.19 | 13.66 | 12.69 |
------- ---- ---- ---- ---- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------

======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Lv 50 | St | Ma | Vi | Sp | BM1 | BM2 | BM3 | BM4 | BM5 | BM6 |
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Vaan | 50 | 42 | 42 | 31 | 20.53 | 20.53 | 16.09 | 18.97 | 19.58 | 18.47 |
| Balth | 50 | 36 | 41 | 31 | 20.53 | 20.53 | 13.09 | 17.80 | 19.58 | 18.27 |
| Fran | 47 | 39 | 36 | 30 | 18.81 | 18.81 | 14.56 | 17.34 | 18.25 | 16.29 |
| Basch | 51 | 39 | 34 | 29 | 21.12 | 21.12 | 14.56 | 18.73 | 19.48 | 17.23 |
| Ashe | 47 | 45 | 40 | 29 | 18.81 | 18.81 | 17.70 | 18.44 | 18.03 | 17.02 |
| Pen | 45 | 43 | 41 | 30 | 17.70 | 17.70 | 16.62 | 17.35 | 17.51 | 16.50 |
------- ---- ---- ---- ---- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------

======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Lv 60 | St | Ma | Vi | Sp | BM1 | BM2 | BM3 | BM4 | BM5 | BM6 |
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Vaan | 55 | 46 | 46 | 32 | 25.71 | 25.71 | 20.05 | 23.77 | 24.21 | 23.27 |
| Balth | 55 | 40 | 45 | 32 | 25.71 | 25.71 | 16.63 | 22.48 | 24.21 | 23.06 |
| Fran | 52 | 43 | 40 | 31 | 23.75 | 23.75 | 18.30 | 21.92 | 22.71 | 20.81 |
| Basch | 56 | 43 | 36 | 30 | 26.38 | 26.38 | 18.30 | 23.53 | 24.12 | 21.50 |
| Ashe | 52 | 50 | 43 | 30 | 23.75 | 23.75 | 22.48 | 23.34 | 22.47 | 21.42 |
| Pen | 50 | 48 | 45 | 31 | 22.48 | 22.48 | 21.25 | 22.09 | 21.87 | 21.01 |
------- ---- ---- ---- ---- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------

======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Lv 70 | St | Ma | Vi | Sp | BM1 | BM2 | BM3 | BM4 | BM5 | BM6 |
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Vaan | 61 | 51 | 50 | 33 | 32.21 | 32.21 | 25.11 | 29.83 | 29.82 | 29.09 |
| Balth | 60 | 44 | 48 | 34 | 31.47 | 31.47 | 20.59 | 27.72 | 29.62 | 28.16 |
| Fran | 57 | 47 | 43 | 32 | 29.28 | 29.28 | 22.48 | 27.05 | 27.67 | 25.66 |
| Basch | 62 | 47 | 39 | 31 | 32.97 | 32.97 | 22.48 | 29.34 | 29.72 | 26.90 |
| Ashe | 58 | 55 | 47 | 32 | 30.00 | 30.00 | 27.86 | 29.32 | 28.14 | 27.01 |
| Pen | 55 | 54 | 49 | 32 | 27.86 | 27.86 | 27.16 | 27.64 | 26.73 | 26.07 |
------- ---- ---- ---- ---- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------

======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Lv 80 | St | Ma | Vi | Sp | BM1 | BM2 | BM3 | BM4 | BM5 | BM6 |
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Vaan | 66 | 55 | 54 | 35 | 38.64 | 38.64 | 30.00 | 35.80 | 35.82 | 35.05 |
| Balth | 65 | 48 | 52 | 35 | 37.82 | 37.82 | 25.00 | 33.50 | 35.29 | 34.02 |
| Fran | 62 | 51 | 46 | 34 | 35.39 | 35.39 | 27.10 | 32.73 | 33.42 | 31.02 |
| Basch | 67 | 51 | 42 | 33 | 39.47 | 39.47 | 27.10 | 35.29 | 35.73 | 32.43 |
| Ashe | 63 | 60 | 50 | 33 | 36.19 | 36.19 | 33.81 | 35.45 | 33.66 | 32.49 |
| Pen | 60 | 59 | 53 | 34 | 33.81 | 33.81 | 33.04 | 33.58 | 32.38 | 31.67 |
------- ---- ---- ---- ---- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------

======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Lv 90 | St | Ma | Vi | Sp | BM1 | BM2 | BM3 | BM4 | BM5 | BM6 |
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Vaan | 72 | 60 | 57 | 36 | 46.56 | 46.56 | 36.16 | 43.19 | 42.61 | 41.84 |
| Balth | 71 | 52 | 55 | 37 | 45.65 | 45.65 | 29.84 | 40.38 | 42.36 | 40.71 |
| Fran | 67 | 55 | 50 | 35 | 42.09 | 42.09 | 32.15 | 38.95 | 39.42 | 37.14 |
| Basch | 72 | 55 | 45 | 34 | 46.56 | 46.56 | 32.15 | 41.78 | 41.95 | 38.47 |
| Ashe | 68 | 65 | 53 | 34 | 42.97 | 42.97 | 40.36 | 42.17 | 39.68 | 38.48 |
| Pen | 65 | 64 | 56 | 35 | 40.36 | 40.36 | 39.50 | 40.10 | 38.27 | 37.57 |
------- ---- ---- ---- ---- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------

======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Lv 99 | St | Ma | Vi | Sp | BM1 | BM2 | BM3 | BM4 | BM5 | BM6 |
======= ==== ==== ==== ==== ======= ======= ======= ======= ======= =======
| Vaan | 77 | 64 | 61 | 37 | 53.94 | 53.94 | 41.75 | 50.03 | 49.04 | 48.63 |
| Balth | 75 | 56 | 58 | 38 | 51.98 | 51.98 | 34.91 | 46.41 | 48.13 | 46.50 |
| Fran | 71 | 59 | 53 | 36 | 48.15 | 48.15 | 37.41 | 44.82 | 44.97 | 42.66 |
| Basch | 77 | 58 | 47 | 35 | 53.94 | 53.94 | 36.57 | 48.22 | 48.33 | 44.41 |
| Ashe | 73 | 69 | 57 | 36 | 50.05 | 50.05 | 46.28 | 48.91 | 46.21 | 44.98 |
| Pen | 70 | 69 | 60 | 36 | 47.21 | 47.21 | 46.28 | 46.94 | 44.35 | 43.98 |
------- ---- ---- ---- ---- ------- ------- ------- ------- ------- -------

BM1 = [1 + 1/256 * STR * (LV+STR)] (1H Swords/2H Swords/Spears/C-bows/Rods<)
BM2 = [1 + 1/256 * STR * (LV+STR)] (Poles)
BM3 = [1 + 1/256 * MAG * (LV+MAG)] (Maces)
BM4 = [1 + 1/256 * STR * (LV+MAG)] (Katanas/Staves)
BM5 = [1 + 1/218 * STR * (LV+SPD)] (Daggers/Ninja Swords/Bows)
BM6^= [1 + 1/128 * STR * (LV+VIT)] * 0.5 (Axes/Hammers/Hand-bombs)

< Except for Healing Rod and Rod of Faith.
^ The 0.5 is used to compensate for the fact that Group 6 weapons have
the potential to deal essentially 200% base damage, due to the 1/128
factor. Thus, comparative BM6 values are one-half of actual BM6 values.

It is interesting to see that at low levels and with equivalent Attack ratings,
Group 5 weapons are actually the most effective (highest BM values). This is
due to the fact that the weight factor is 1/218 and not 1/256. Therefore, Group
5 weapons are better than they initially seem. Nevertheless, their BM values
drop off as Speed growth slows to a crawl.

So now if we rank the characters by the values shown:


Overall Weapon Proficiencies
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Again:
Group 1 = Swords, Greatswords, Spears, Rods (except for Healing Rod and Rod
of Faith), Crossbows
Group 2 = Poles
Group 3 = Maces
Group 4 = Katanas, Staves
Group 5 = Daggers, Ninja Swords, Bows
Group 6 = Axes, Hammers, Hand-bombs

==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| Lv | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 | Group 4 | Group 5 | Group 6 |
==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| 10 | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Ashe | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Balth |
| | 2-Balth | 2-Balth | 2-Vaan | 2-Vaan | 2-Balth | 2-Vaan |
| | 3-Vaan | 3-Vaan | 3-Basch | 3-Ashe | 3-Vaan | 3-Basch |
| | 4-Fran | 4-Fran | 3-Pen | 4-Balth | 4-Fran | 4-Ashe |
| | 5-Ashe | 5-Ashe | 5-Fran | 5-Fran | 5-Ashe | 5-Pen |
| | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Balth | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Fran |
---- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------

==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| Lv | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 | Group 4 | Group 5 | Group 6 |
==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| 20 | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Ashe | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Balth |
| | 2-Balth | 2-Balth | 2-Vaan | 2-Vaan | 2-Balth | 2-Vaan |
| | 3-Vaan | 3-Vaan | 3-Pen | 3-Ashe | 3-Vaan | 3-Basch |
| | 4-Fran | 4-Fran | 4-Basch | 4-Balth | 4-Fran | 4-Ashe |
| | 5-Ashe | 5-Ashe | 5-Fran | 5-Fran | 5-Ashe | 5-Pen |
| | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Balth | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Fran |
---- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------

==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| Lv | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 | Group 4 | Group 5 | Group 6 |
==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| 30 | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Ashe | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan |
| | 2-Vaan | 2-Vaan | 2-Vaan | 2-Basch | 1-Balth | 2-Balth |
| | 2-Balth | 2-Balth | 2-Pen | 3-Ashe | 3-Basch | 3-Basch |
| | 4-Fran | 4-Fran | 4-Basch | 4-Balth | 4-Fran | 4-Ashe |
| | 5-Ashe | 5-Ashe | 5-Fran | 5-Fran | 5-Ashe | 5-Pen |
| | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Balth | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Fran |
---- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------

==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| Lv | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 | Group 4 | Group 5 | Group 6 |
==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| 40 | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Ashe | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Vaan |
| | 2-Vaan | 2-Vaan | 2-Pen | 2-Vaan | 2-Vaan | 2-Balth |
| | 2-Balth | 2-Balth | 3-Vaan | 3-Ashe | 2-Balth | 3-Basch |
| | 4-Fran | 4-Fran | 4-Basch | 4-Balth | 4-Fran | 4-Ashe |
| | 4-Ashe | 4-Ashe | 5-Fran | 5-Pen | 4-Ashe | 5-Pen |
| | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Balth | 6-Fran | 6-Pen | 6-Fran |
---- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------

==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| Lv | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 | Group 4 | Group 5 | Group 6 |
==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| 50 | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Ashe | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan |
| | 2-Vaan | 2-Vaan | 2-Pen | 2-Basch | 1-Balth | 2-Balth |
| | 2-Balth | 2-Balth | 3-Vaan | 3-Ashe | 3-Basch | 3-Basch |
| | 4-Fran | 4-Fran | 4-Fran | 4-Balth | 4-Fran | 4-Ashe |
| | 4-Ashe | 4-Ashe | 4-Basch | 5-Pen | 5-Ashe | 5-Pen |
| | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Balth | 6-Fran | 6-Pen | 6-Fran |
---- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------

==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| Lv | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 | Group 4 | Group 5 | Group 6 |
==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| 60 | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Ashe | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan |
| | 2-Vaan | 2-Vaan | 2-Pen | 2-Basch | 1-Balth | 2-Balth |
| | 2-Balth | 2-Balth | 3-Vaan | 3-Ashe | 3-Basch | 3-Basch |
| | 4-Fran | 4-Fran | 4-Fran | 4-Balth | 4-Fran | 4-Ashe |
| | 4-Ashe | 4-Ashe | 4-Basch | 5-Pen | 5-Ashe | 5-Pen |
| | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Balth | 6-Fran | 6-Pen | 6-Fran |
---- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------

==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| Lv | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 | Group 4 | Group 5 | Group 6 |
==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| 70 | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Ashe | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan |
| | 2-Vaan | 2-Vaan | 2-Pen | 2-Basch | 2-Basch | 2-Balth |
| | 3-Balth | 2-Balth | 3-Vaan | 3-Ashe | 3-Balth | 3-Ashe |
| | 4-Ashe | 4-Ashe | 4-Fran | 4-Balth | 4-Ashe | 4-Basch |
| | 5-Fran | 5-Fran | 4-Basch | 5-Pen | 5-Fran | 5-Pen |
| | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Balth | 6-Fran | 6-Pen | 6-Fran |
---- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------

==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| Lv | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 | Group 4 | Group 5 | Group 6 |
==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| 80 | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Ashe | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan |
| | 2-Vaan | 2-Vaan | 2-Pen | 2-Ashe | 2-Basch | 2-Balth |
| | 3-Balth | 2-Balth | 3-Vaan | 3-Basch | 3-Balth | 3-Ashe |
| | 4-Ashe | 4-Ashe | 4-Fran | 4-Pen | 4-Ashe | 4-Basch |
| | 5-Fran | 5-Fran | 4-Basch | 5-Balth | 5-Fran | 5-Pen |
| | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Balth | 6-Fran | 6-Pen | 6-Fran |
---- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------

==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| Lv | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 | Group 4 | Group 5 | Group 6 |
==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| 90 | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan | 1-Ashe | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan |
| | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 2-Pen | 2-Ashe | 2-Balth | 2-Balth |
| | 3-Balth | 3-Balth | 3-Vaan | 3-Basch | 3-Basch | 3-Ashe |
| | 4-Ashe | 4-Ashe | 4-Fran | 4-Balth | 4-Ashe | 4-Basch |
| | 5-Fran | 5-Fran | 4-Basch | 5-Pen | 5-Fran | 5-Pen |
| | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Balth | 6-Fran | 6-Pen | 6-Fran |
---- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------

==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| Lv | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3 | Group 4 | Group 5 | Group 6 |
==== ========= ========= ========= ========= ========= =========
| 99 | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan | 1-Ashe | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan | 1-Vaan |
| | 1-Basch | 1-Basch | 1-Pen | 2-Ashe | 2-Basch | 2-Balth |
| | 3-Balth | 3-Balth | 3-Vaan | 3-Basch | 3-Balth | 3-Ashe |
| | 4-Ashe | 4-Ashe | 4-Fran | 4-Pen | 4-Ashe | 4-Basch |
| | 5-Fran | 5-Fran | 5-Basch | 5-Balth | 5-Fran | 5-Pen |
| | 6-Pen | 6-Pen | 6-Balth | 6-Fran | 6-Pen | 6-Fran |
---- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---------


Note that since Group 3 weapons depend only on Magick Power, you can also use
the Group 3 listings to determine the mage rankings for your characters at each
ten-level interval.

In terms of chart movers, it seems like Basch does very well at low levels
before eventually being overtaken by others in half of the weapon categories.
The other four characters hold pretty steadily throughout. If you need cold,
hard proof of Vaan having the best overall stats in the game, look no further.

Poor Fran. She has the unenviable distinction of being the only character not
to be in the top 3 in ANY of those charts.

But ultimately, how much does all of this equate to in terms of numbers? If you
look at the differences between values, you can calculate the net effect by
taking some differences and multiplying by the basic (x*r-y) factor (difference
between attacker's weapon's weighted Attack and target's Defense). If we're not
discussing lopsided fights such as one between a Lv 99 character wielding a
Zodiac Spear and a Lv 4 Wolf, you can probably expect (x*r-y) to take on a
value of somewhere between 30-100 on average for all but the most unbalanced
match-ups.

Consider a fight between a Lv 99 character wielding the Zodiac Spear (Attack
+150 Group 1 weapon) and Omega Mk. XII (Defense +38). Your (x*r-y) value is
121.4, assuming that you use r = 1.0625 (or the "average" r value). Let's
compare Vaan (Str 77) to Penelo (Str 70).

Vaan: 121.4 * BM1 at Lv 99 = 121.4 * 53.94 = 6548.32 base damage points
Penelo: 121.4 * BM1 at Lv 99 = 121.4 * 47.21 = 5731.29 base damage points

Difference = 817.03
Average = 6139.81

I think most would agree that this is fairly significant. Just to make sure
that this isn't a fluke, let's do another contextually appropriate example.
Let us now use as the test weapon a Demonsbane (Attack +59) against Mateus
(Defense +21) at Lv 30. Our weapon is still classified as Group 1. Our new
(x*r-y) value is 41.69. Let's again take the difference between the largest and
smallest BM values, which are Basch's and Penelo's.

Basch: 41.69 * BM1 at Lv 30 = 41.69 * 11.94 = 497.78 base damage points
Penelo: 41.69 * BM1 at Lv 30 = 41.69 * 9.89 = 412.31 base damage points

Difference = 85.47
Average = 455.05

These results also does not take into account the value of z (status modifiers
like buffs) or bonuses to Strength via the Battle Lore licenses or equipment.
Both factors will amplify the difference between the resultant BM values. In
the case of Battle Lores/equipment, even though the disparity in Strength would
remain the same, the fact that the actual Strength values go up would make a
difference in the calculations.

Just to really see this, let's return to Lv 99 and compare Vaan to Fran, both
wielding the Masamune (Attack +93, Group 4 weapon) against the Hell Wyrm
(Defense +32). Assume the following for both characters:

All Battle Lore augment licenses learned ....... +5 Str
All Magick Lore augment licenses learned ....... +5 Mag
Magepower Shishak equipped ..................... +11 Str +5 Mag
Lordly Robes equipped .......................... +5 Str +15 Mag
Total .......................................... +21 Str +25 Mag

This improves our base statistics to:

Vaan: 98 Str, 89 Mag
Fran: 92 Str, 84 Mag

Let's add in both a Bravery and Berserk effect for the hell of it, so z = 1.3 *
1.5 = 1.95. Now ...

Vaan: BM4 = [1 + 1/256 * STR * (LV+MAG)] = 72.97
Fran: BM4 = [1 + 1/256 * STR * (LV+MAG)] = 66.77
Both: (x*r-y) = (93*1.0625 - 32) = 66.81

Vaan: D = (x*r-y) * BM4 * z = 66.81 * 72.97 * 1.95 = 9506.50
Fran: D = (x*r-y) * BM4 * z = 66.81 * 66.77 * 1.95 = 8698.76

Vaan does almost 800 more points of damage per hit. If we're talking about
Masamune + Genji Gloves, which combos at an insane rate, think about the number
of hits that you get in over the course of a minute or two and multiply that
number by 800 to get an estimate of the difference in damage ...

So yes, I do think that the significance is there, even though the degree of
significance obviously varies given different mixes of (x*r-y) and BM values.

But in the end, unless you're REALLY obsessed with stuff like this, there is no
reason to lose sleep over it. Some of the differences in BM values are REALLY
REALLY small and make several of the separations essentially negligible. The
biggest thing it might affect is your psyche and sense of aesthetics when you
look at the stats and wonder why Fran is so gimped. But hey, you can still give
her Masamune + Genji Gloves and go to town on everything in sight (like I do).
The game isn't hard enough to warrant overly serious consideration of any of
these numbers. In other words, you should in no way feel restricted by all of
the crap you see up there. If you want Penelo to be your main fighter, then
have at it!



===============================================================================
5. Changelog / Version History [050]
===============================================================================

All names taken from Final Fantasy XII listed in this document are copyrighted
by Square-Enix.

Below are the details for updates that I deem significant (as in, excluding
minor syntax/formatting changes). Listed in parentheses besides each update
is the section which was updated. Updates are listed in the order in which
they appear throughout the guide.

12/13/06
Version 1.2 (3, 4)
- Eliminated Version History.
- Added Section 0. This will, in all likelihood, be my last major update for
this guide.
- Removed Auto-Leveling subsection (formerly 3a).
- Removed some analysis subsections (formerly 4d-4f).

11/15/06
Version 1.11 (1, 2b, 2d, 2f, 3d)
- Added in details on how to get the Zodiac Spear if you opened the wrong
treasure chests. (1)
- Made a clarification about fighting Ichthons at the very beginning of the
walkthrough. (2b)
- Threw in a note on how to steal multiple Deathbringers from Ithuno. Also
linked to a map of the armor locations, courtesy of spirit_guy_25. (2d)
- Added in notes on how to obtain High Arcana easily in both the walkthrough
and the notes for the Tournesol. Thanks to JonathanEyoon's input. (2f, 3d)
- Added method to chain Helvineks for Grand Armor. Thanks to IndigoSage for
this info. (3d)
- Various other little things.

11/14/06
Version 1.10 (2c, 3a, 3d, 4c)
- Fixed the error regarding the early Francisca (Gigantoads -> Lizards). Thanks
to ramza723@yahoo.com for this. (2c)
- Inserted documentation on the auto-leveling method in Miriam, developed by
Crimson Skys. I wasn't going to do this, but goldeneye86 convinced me that it
would be nice for completion's sake. You can thank him for that. (3a)
- Made a note on the renewable nature of Bazaar ingredients for Tournesol.
Also added in details for Stone Shot and Scorpion Tail. (3d)
- Added in Masamune damage comparison. (4c)

11/13/06
Version 1.05 (2c, 4, 6)
- Added a small tidbit on the Rocktoise hunt and Teleport Stones at the Clan
Shop. Thanks to M.W. for this. (2c)
- Added final (I think) version of damage formula, as well as values for status
modifiers. Credit maltzsan for the majority of the content in this section.
(4b)
- Added in a new section detailing character proficiencies with different
weapon types. (4c)
- Added a stand-alone credits section. (6)

11/12/06
Version 1.00 (1, 2b, 2c, 2f, 2h, 3c, 3d, 4a-4c, 4e)
- Updated the Q&A to reflect the evolution of this document.
- Minor correction about amount of Exp Hyenas give. Thanks to GreenDave for the
heads-up. (2b)
- Made some changes to notes on the Lindbur Wolf. (2b)
While we're on this, I want to give a shout out to AmanoJ for his studies
into the proper significance of a flashing chain number. As I have thought
for quite some time now (although I've never bothered to test it), you should
not make the assumption that a flashing chain number causes a rare monster to
appear. For more details on what its proper meaning might be, visit the
GameFAQs FFXII boards and put "mystery of the flashing chain number" into
Search.
- Added in method to obtain Franciscas after exiting Barheim for the first
time. Thanks to branflakecereal@gmail.com for this. (2c)
- Added in some notes on Embroidered Tippets and Ultima Blade. (2f)
- Minor addition to Leveling to 99 section. (2h)
- Added info on Sagittarius. (3c)
- Added in Character Stats section. (3d)
- Made corrections to Weapon Speeds that should've been made from the start.
Also tidied things up a bit and added in a comprehensive chart. (4a)
- Began filling in the Weapon Damage section. Thanks to Aeana from GAF for
originally posting the information from Ultimania. Also, shout out to rmdsc
for making big progress towards the results in this section. (4b)
- Cleaned up comments on the Masamune and Tournesol. (4c, 4e)

11/09/06
Version 0.95 (2b, 2d, 3b, 3c)
- Made some corrections regarding the Rod at the start of the walkthrough.
I threw in some percentages for the appropriate chest. I also added back in
the Iron Sword and Leather Shield as a backup. (2b)
- Added in details on how to obtain high-level armor in Barheim after you
obtain the Barheim Key. (2d)
+ Dragon Mail and Cleric's Robes, courtesy of GnatB.
+ Celebrant's Miter, courtesy of Kimber Boh.
+ Gigas Hat and Francisca.
- Added Stealing from Rare Trophy Monsters section. (3b)
- Alphabetized rare items stuff. (3c)
- Added in details on Tournesol. (3c)
- Other minor errors fixed throughout.

11/08/06
Version 0.90b (2b, 2e, 4e, 5)
- Upgraded the beginning of the walkthrough (Rod instead of Iron Sword/Leather
Shield). Thanks to x3mgame@gmail.com for the great advice. (2b)
- Added a tidbit about Hyena chaining (carry-over from Wolf chaining). Thanks
to Gavin B. for the reminder. (2b)
- Threw in the note about using Raise against the Golmore skeletons. Thanks to
koalainusa@hotmail.com for this. (2e)
- Added some interesting thoughts about Tournesol and Masamune in the weapon
ratings section. (4e)
- Created changelog (yay for circular reference). Thanks to Dave G. for
suggesting that I clean things up. (5)

11/07/06
Version 0.90a (2c, 2e, 3b, 3c, 4a-4e)
- Outside contributions inserted into the walkthrough.
+ Made corrections on the location of the Nidhogg hunt, as well as on when
the Barheim Key sidequest becomes available. Credit goes to
dwm042@email.com. (2c)
+ Also made a note on how to get Broadaxes in the Tomb of Raithwall. Credit
goes to civicized@hotmail.com. (2c)
+ Note on the availability of Embroidered Tippet before Archades. Credit goes
to Shane G. (2e)
+ Note on leveling in the Golmore Jungle (using Phoenix Downs). Credit goes
to gen_esis@yahoo.com. (2e)
- Added new section to focus on weapons.
+ Moved all existing weapon sections there. (4a, 4b)
+ Added new sections. (4c-4e)
- Added Stealing from Neutrals and Grand Helm sections under Miscellaneous.
(3b, 3c)

11/06/06, 11/04/06
Version 0.85, Version 0.80
Thanks to:
- freakazoidz for the original power-leveling method.
- redmem for reposting the aforementioned method.
- goldeneye86 for the early return to Barheim and getting Deathbringers.
- Kairi for the moneymaking tip in the Feywood.
- leeboo1211 for the first mention of Abysteels and their weakness to Disable.
- Garbo for Sleepga vs. Abysteels and the petrified respawning glitch.


===============================================================================
6. Credits [060]
===============================================================================

Here is a filtered credits section.

Author
- Arthellinus

Contributors
- Aeana
- AmanoJ
- branflakecereal@gmail.com
- civicized@hotmail.com
- Dave G.
- dwm042@email.com
- freakazoidz
- Garbo
- Gavin B.
- gen_esis@yahoo.com
- GnatB
- goldeneye86
- GreenDave
- hellfire185@gmail.com
- IndigoSage
- JonathanEyoon
- Kairi
- Kimber Boh
- koalainusa@hotmail.com
- leeboo1211
- maltzsan
- M.W.
- ramza723@yahoo.com
- redmem
- rmdsc
- Shane G.
- spirit_guy_25
- x3mgame@gmail.com

Special Thanks
- maltzsan
- Garbo
- rmdsc, EiEi, thrakkemarn, and everyone else from the "Damage from non-STR
based weapons" thread on GameFAQs
- sephirosuy
- Kouli
- CJayC

Enter supporting content here