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Maximum Ambrosia Guide by Archaeopteryx

Version: 1.0 | Updated: 06/06/06

Persona: Be Your True Mind
Sony Playstation
Snow Queen Quest: Maximum Ambrosia Guide
Version 1.0
Written by Archaeopteryx (shisochou@gmail.com)

Note: A shorter, more picture intensive guide to the Maximum Ambrosia route 
could be found on my weblog; the URL is: 
http://shisochou.livejournal.com/83910.html

Correspondence with me could be made by either e-mailing me at the address 
above, or (preferably) by posting a comment at the above URL (anonymous posts 
are allowed).  

DISCLAIMER

This guide is based on the Japanese version of Persona, because it is the 
only version in which the Snow Queen Quest is kept intact; said scenario was 
officially removed from the English version of the game.  As such, for the 
sake of consistency, I am using the names from the Japanese version, and I am 
approaching the guide as if the reader is playing the Japanese version of the 
game.  The tips here can apply to the US version as well (if, say, you're 
accessing the Snow Queen Quest with a Gameshark), but keep in mind that most 
of the names listed here, especially the names of items and spells, are 
wildly different from those in the US version.  There are some tips here 
(such as those pertaining to fusion) that are not well known amongst the 
English-speaking community, so this mini-guide may potentially be useful even 
for those with no desire to play the Snow Queen Quest.

INTRODUCTION

This mini-guide was written on a whim, while replaying Persona 1.  There's 
very little information available in English regarding the Snow Queen Quest 
in the first game, and I hope to change this somewhat.  This is NOT meant to 
be a full fledged walkthrough or a comprehensive guide to the Snow Queen 
Quest (though it may eventually evolve into one, if time and motivation 
permits).  Instead, the purpose of this guide is to give pointers on how to 
complete the Snow Queen Quest doing the so-called "Maximum Ambrosia" route; 
it will get you as far as clearing the Thanatos Tower, which is really the 
essential step in getting all five Ambrosia.

ABOUT THE SNOW QUEEN QUEST

As most fans of the game know, the Snow Queen Quest was removed from the US 
version of the game.  There are various conspiracy theories regarding why it 
was removed, but suffice to say that it is not accessible in the US version 
through normal means (keyword of course being "normal", more on this later).  
A common misconception about the Snow Queen Quest is that it is merely a 
short side-quest that takes less than ten hours to complete, but nothing 
could be farther from the truth.  It is, in fact, a completely different 
means of finishing the game; it has its own storyline, which is standalone.  
The Snow Queen Quest, as a separate storyline, has every bit as much variety 
as the Sebec scenario; just like the "normal" Sebec quest, the Snow Queen 
Quest has its own "good" and "bad" ending, depending on your actions.  There 
is a bit of freedom regarding which characters can fight alongside you in the 
Snow Queen Quest; Yukino (US name: Yuki) and Ayase (US name: Alana) are 
mandatory, while you have a choice Brown (US name: Brad), Ellie (US name: 
Ellen), and Nanjou (US name: Nate) to fill up the fourth and fifth slots; 
each optional character has his or her own sets of dialogue for the duration 
of the quest.  Moreover, there are characters that exist only in the Snow 
Queen Quest (such as the guardians of the three towers).  It is also NOT 
short; just like the Sebec scenario, expect to spend a good 50-60 hours to 
complete the Snow Queen Quest, and more if you're the type who aspires to 
completeness.  

The Snow Queen Quest also provides the one of the most difficult challenges 
in modern RPG history: The Maximum Ambrosia Route.  The Snow Queen Quest is 
no walk in the park, period, but attempting the Maximum Ambrosia Route in the 
Snow Queen Quest is only for the truly masochistic fans of Persona; if you 
have completed it, you can justifiably say you are a master of this game.  

And this is the purpose of this document.  Think of this as a mini-guide; 
it'll get you past the Thanatos Tower, and after that, you're on your own.  
Besides, as you'll find out, the other two towers are a CINCH if you do the 
Thanatos Tower first. ;-)

THE PREMISE BEHIND THE "MAXIMUM AMBROSIA ROUTE"

The main purpose of the Snow Queen Quest is to obtain all twelve pieces of 
the mirror, and ultimate save your teacher, Saeko-sensei (Ms. Smith).  The 
mirror pieces are scattered throughout three towers: in order of increasing 
difficulty, the three towers are Hypnos Tower, the Nemesis Tower, and the 
Thanatos Tower.  Now, if you were playing the Snow Queen Quest for the first 
time, you'd realize that if you stuck your nose into the wrong tower (like, 
say the Nemesis or Thanatos Tower), you'd likely die from all the powerful 
demons that lurk inside.  In fact, you're warned beforehand about the 
difficulty of each tower.  So most people play it safe, and complete the 
towers from the easiest to the most difficult, specifically in the order 
Hypnos --> Nemesis --> Thanatos.  

But it is possible to complete the towers in the order Thanatos --> Nemesis -
-> Hypnos.  Now, this will mean that, upon entering the Thanatos tower, your 
characters will be encountering demons that are at a level up to two times 
higher than yours, and you'll be in a dungeon with a number of annoying 
effects that make it difficult even for a high level party (for example, upon 
entering the Thanatos Tower, one of your characters, Main or Yukino, will 
lose the ability to summon a Persona).  However, if you plan ahead, if you 
know Persona's game system inside and out, if you are able to exploit the 
individual strengths and weaknesses of each Persona you summon and each demon 
you encounter, and if you've completely mastered the art of negotiating with 
demons, it is entirely possible to complete the most difficult tower first.  
It's just very, very, very, VERY hard.  (Did I mention it is difficult?  I 
cannot stress this enough.)

This is where "Ambrosia" comes in.  It's a type of item that exists only in 
the Snow Queen Quest, and the number of Ambrosia you are able to obtain 
depends on the order in which you complete the towers.  The following chart 
shows the different possibilities in which you could complete the towers, and 
the number of Ambrosia you can obtain for each route:

Route 1: Hypnos --> Nemesis --> Thanatos
After completing Hypnos Tower: 0 Ambrosia
After completing Nemesis Tower: 1 Ambrosia
After completing Thanatos Tower: 1 Ambrosia (total: 2)

Route 2: Hypnos --> Thanatos --> Nemesis
After completing Hypnos Tower: 0 Ambrosia
After completing Thanatos Tower: 2 Ambrosia
After completing Nemesis Tower; 1 Ambrosia (total: 3)

Route 3: Nemesis --> Hypnos --> Thanatos
After completing Nemesis Tower: 2 Ambrosia
After completing Hypnos Tower: 0 Ambrosia
After completing Thanatos Tower: 1 Ambrosia (total: 3)

Route 4: Nemesis --> Thanatos --> Hypnos
After completing Nemesis Tower: 2 Ambrosia
After completing Thanatos Tower: 1 Ambrosia
After completing Hypnos Tower: 1 Ambrosia (total: 4)

Route 5: Thanatos --> Hypnos --> Nemesis
After completing Thanatos Tower: 3 Ambrosia
After completing Hypnos Tower: 1 Ambrosia
After completing Nemesis Tower: 1 Ambrosia (total: 5)

Route 6: Thanatos --> Nemesis --> Hypnos
After completing Thanatos Tower: 3 Ambrosia
After completing Nemesis Tower: 1 Ambrosia
After completing Hypnos Tower: 1 Ambrosia (total: 5)

As you could see here, routes 5 and 6 allow you to obtain maximum number of 
Ambrosia.

What are Ambrosia?

In the final dungeon of the Snow Queen Quest, you can exchange your Ambrosia 
for any of the fusion items needed to create the Ultimate Personae for your 
party.  These items are:

Rosetta Stone: needed to fuse Lv. 62 EMPEROR Amen Ra (for Main)
Buffalo Beats: needed to fuse Lv. 57 EMPRESS Durga (for Yukino)
Stuffed Deer: needed to fuse Lv. Lv. 59 MAGICIAN Freyr (for Ayase)
Amber-spotted Glasses: needed to fuse Lv. 60 JUDGEMENT Yamaoka (for Nanjou)
Victory Rune: needed to fuse Lv. 54 JUSTICE Tyr (for Brown)
Contract of Judgment: needed to fuse Lv. 62 JUDGEMENT Michael (for Ellie)

On top of getting Ambrosia, changing the order in which you complete the 
towers results in some dialogue changes.  If you do manage to complete the 
Maximum Ambrosia Route, congratulations.  You're a bona fide pro.

SNOW QUEEN QUEST IN THE US VERSION?

While the Snow Queen Quest has been dummied out of the US version, it is 
apparently possible to access it via Gameshark.  I've never tried it myself, 
but reliable sources tell me that it is NOT translated (instead of text, 
there is just garbled letters or something similar).  I don't know the code, 
so don't even ask.  Google is your friend...

Because it is technically possible to play the Snow Queen Quest in the US 
version through these means, this guide should still be of some assistance to 
you.  Just remember the names are different.

MAXIMUM AMBROSIA GUIDE, PART I: BEFORE TRIGGERING THE SNOW QUEEN QUEST

Play the game as normal until you cleared the hospital, and Ellie has joined 
your party.  Since there are five members in your party now (You, now 
referred to henceforth as "Main", Nanjou, Mark, Yukino, and Ellie), use this 
opportunity to contact demons and gather as many spell cards as possible.  
You need to do this before reaching the Araya Shrine; once you enter the 
Shrine, Mark and Nanjou will leave, giving you fewer options with which to 
contact demons.

I'd suggest at least getting cards from the following demons:
-Yousei Jack Frost
-Yousei Pixie
-Majuu Cait Sith
-Gedou Chinbira
-Gedou Slime
-Yama Nacht Kobold
-Youki Ihika
-Yuuki Gaki
-a few cards of the demons of the Shiki variety (Zombie-san, Zombie-kun, 
etc.)

Before heading to the shrine, you may want to head to Joy Street Mall and try 
your luck at the casino.  The weapons available in exchange for coins are 
even better than the ones you'll find later in the frozen school.  (Note: If 
you're using an emulator, and you want to cheat, take advantage of save 
states to rack up as many coins as possible: play poker on the machine; after 
winning a hand, you'll have a chance to play double or nothing with the "Big 
or Small" minigame.  If you save before each draw, and reload every time you 
don't win, you'll have a million coins in no time.) Don't go the Sun Mall; 
the items available for exchange are not as good as those at Joy Street.  
Remember, do all this before entering the Shrine; once you enter the shrine, 
there's no turning back, since you'll be forced to go to the school.

After entering the Shrine, Mark and Nanjou will take off, leaving just you, 
Yukino, and Ellie.  Before heading to the school, use this opportunity to 
level-up.  (You could level-up before the shrine, of course, but with only 
three party members after the shrine, the process will be a lot faster.)  I 
suggest leveling up until Main's Persona level is at 20; you'll get a "free" 
level-up when you fight Toro later, and this will leave you at level 21, just 
enough to be able to summon MOON Lilim.  If you get up to level 21 (and thus 
level 22 after the fight with Toro), you'll be able to summon STAR Janus, 
which is also an excellent Persona, but it is not quite as essential to 
success as Lilim.

To make the level-up process quick, keep using Main's Seimen Kongou Persona 
until he is able to use Maha Garu.  After this set up your battles such that 
Main uses only Maha Garu, while Yukino and Ellie both defend.  (To streamline 
this process even further, use the replay auto option in battle, and turn off 
the window animations.)  With the Maha Garu spell, you'll be able to plow 
through most enemies quickly, and you'll be up to level 20 before you know 
it.  Just concentrate on building Main's levels; don't worry about Yukino's 
or Ellie's levels becoming disparate from yours.  (In my game, I was at level 
20, while Yukino and Ellie were both only at level 14.)  They'll leave you 
once you enter the school anyway, and once they rejoin you after starting the 
Snow Queen Quest, you'll find their levels even with yours.  When assigning 
points to the main character at level-up, it is a good idea to bump his AGI 
as much as possible; this will help him act quickly in battle.  Try to 
increase his LUC, TEC, and VIT as well, but focus your points on AGI.  STR 
won't be a very important parameter, since much of your success will depend 
on magic, and not physical attacks.

Keep in mind that Yousei Pixie reflects wind, and Youma Nacht Kobold absorbs 
magic, so Maha Garu is useless against them.  You should have their spell 
cards by now anyway, so if you encounter them while trying to level-up, you 
can avoid fighting them by simply contacting them (they may give you an item 
or money as well).  This can save you some time.

TRIGGERING THE SNOW QUEEN QUEST

Once you have reached level 20, enter the school.  Yukino and Ellie will 
leave your party.  While exploring the school, complete the following steps 
to trigger the Snow Queen Quest:
1. Talk to the female student in room 2-4
2. Go to the library and talk to Akuma-kun (US version: Kain)
3. Head to the drama club room by the gymnasium and talk to the club members.
4. Head to the student council room on the third floor and talk to the 
student council president
5. Head to the principal's office and overhear the conversation between Hanya 
and Oishi.  Talk to both.
6. Head to the storage room near the gymnasium, and choose to open the box 
you find inside.

Now you have triggered the Snow Queen Scenario.  Head to the corridor, where 
the hole is located, and watch the events unfold.  You'll find yourself in 
the frozen school.

PART III: BEFORE ENTERING THE THANATOS TOWER

Next you will need to determine who you want as your fourth and fifth 
character, since Yukino and Ayase are mandatory.  It's a matter of personal 
preference, but Ellie is highly recommended, because she has good 
compatibility with some of the  Personae you may want to use in this scenario 
(such as JUDGEMENT Phaleg, etc.).  As for the fifth party member, it's a 
toss-up between either Brown or Nanjou.  Brown, in my opinion, has better 
offensive skills, particularly because he can use machine guns.  Nanjou, on 
the other hand, is better at successfully contacting some of the more 
annoying demons you'll encounter in the Thanatos Tower (like Kuchisake).  In 
the end, I usually choose Ellie and Brown as my fourth and fifth party 
members, mainly because after playing the Sebec Route so many times, I'm sick 
of constantly having Nanjou in the party anyway.

Here is how I set up my party in battle:
1   2   3
  4   5

1: Main, 2: Brown, 3: Ellie, 4: Ayase, 5: Yukino 

Nanjou should take over the fourth position if he's in your party.  You could 
switch Brown and Ayase's places; in front and center she'll have greater 
range for her whip attacks (and her gun will actually have a use), but you'd 
lose Brown's good range for his spear and machine gun attacks.  Ayase also 
has pretty low HP compared to Brown, and it may be dangerous to put her in 
range of the demons' physical attacks.

With five party members, head to the cafeteria, where you'll have an 
encounter with Toro's infamous Penis Demon; Ayase's (and Brown's, if he's in 
your party) Persona abilities will awaken here.  You'll also get a free 
level-up, so you should be at level 21 now.

Before going to the Velvet Room, it is a good idea to head to the Casino and 
rack up some coins.  Use the aforementioned poker tips to get around 15000-
20000 coins.  The items available in exchange for coins are mostly stuff you 
could add during fusion, and you'd want the items at the end of the list, 
which are mostly magic-bearing stones that would add new spells to the 
Personae you fuse.  I suggest picking up at least two shakunetsu no sekiban 
(which adds Megidolaon), and experimenting with some of the other stones.

Go to the Velvet Room and create some new Personae for your characters.  I 
went to the Velvet Room at New Moon, as moon phase has an effect on the 
resulting Personae.

There are my suggestions.  Definitely fuse the first two; the rest are 
optional.
1. Lv. 21 MOON Lilim (Yuuki Gaki X Gedou Chinbira)
Lilim is THE must have Persona for the maximum Ambrosia route, and is the 
reason why I suggest people should get to least level 20 before triggering 
the Snow Queen Quest.  Lilim absorbs magic, and it reflects status attacks.  
Also, being Evildark, Lilim is not affected by the instant death spells used 
by a number of the tower's denizens.  Its only weakness is against holy based 
attacks (such as Hama), but other than this a character equipped with Lilim 
is very likely to survive most of the battles in the dungeon.  To make Lilim 
more powerful, add a shakunetsu no sekiban during the fusion process: this 
will allow it to use Megidolaon when it reaches rank 2, which, combined with 
its naturally strong magic defensive qualities, makes Lilim virtually 
unstoppable.  I gave this Persona to Main, but it is compatible with any of 
the male characters.

2. Lv. 11 PRIESTESS Amenouzume (Yousei Jack Frost X Majuu Cait Sith)
Though Amenouzume is weak against physical attacks, this Persona does provide 
strong magic defense.  Even more importantly, it is the only Persona at this 
early stage of the game that can cast a mass healing spell (Media) at rank 1.  
Since healing items are mostly useless in the Thanatos Tower, you need this 
Persona.  A note about the recommended demons used in fusing this Persona: 
make sure to have Jack Frost in the first position, and Cait Sith in the 
second position; this way Amenouzume will be able to use the Maha Bufu spell 
(she'll learn it when she reaches rank 2).  This effect is not cumulative, 
however; and Amenouzume will not learn Maha Bufu if you used any of the 
magic-bearing stones during the fusion process (it'll learn the spell given 
by the stone instead).  Give this Persona to anyone except Yukino.

3. Lv. 16 HERMIT Fuutai (Youki Ihika X Shiki Zombie-san/Zombie-kun, etc.)
Fuutai, like Lilim, can reflect status attacks, such as those that cause 
charm, sleep, etc.  To make this Persona more useful, I gave it a Senkou no 
Sekiban (Flash Stone) so it could cast Maha Jiodyne.  I gave this Persona to 
Brown, but it is most compatible with the female characters (Ayase, Ellie, 
and Yukino).

4. Lv. 14 MAGICIAN Urvasi (Yousei Pixie X Yama Nacht Kobold)
Urvasi can reflect ice-based attacks, and its Bufula and Maha Bufu spells are 
useful, particularly if you don't feel like adding a magic-bearing stone 
during fusion.  Its magic attack power is also quite high.  In my game, I 
added a shakunetsu no sekiban during fusion, so it could cast Megidolaon.  
Give this Persona to Ayase if you choose to fuse it.

5. Lv. 18 JUDGEMENT Phaleg (Yuuki Gaki X Shiki Zombie-san, Zombie-kun, etc.)
What makes Phaleg very useful is its ability to void virtually all magic 
spells, except for those of a "dark nature", such as Mudo.  It can also use 
Medirama, a powerful healing spell that affects all party members, but it 
will not learn this until it reaches rank 4.  In other words, you'll need to 
be able to survive several battles before being able to take advantage of 
Phaleg's healing abilities, unlike PRIESTESS Amenouzume, which cast Media at 
rank 1.  Still, it's a very useful Persona.  As always, adding a magic-
bearing stone will give Phaleg a powerful offensive spell to complement its 
healing abilities.  Ellie is most compatible with this Persona.  

6. Lv. 22 STAR Janus (Gedou Slime X Shiki Zombie-san, Zombie-kun, etc.)
A very strong Persona with good offensive magic spells from a variety of 
elements; its ability to use spells of contradictory elements, such as earth 
and wind (Magna and Maha Garula), as well as holylight and evildark (Eien no 
shiro and fumetsu no kuro) is not only useful, but befitting to this two-
faced god of Roman mythology.  The only problem with this Persona is that it 
is level 22 (one level higher than Lilim); in my game, I fused this Persona 
before entering the Thanatos Tower, and then gave it to Yukino in the Velvet 
Room in the tower itself (after, of course, her Persona abilities were 
restored and she had reached level 22).  In my game, I added a touma no 
sekiban during fusion, so Janus could cast Maha Bufudyne at rank 2.  This 
Persona is most compatible with your female party members.

As stated earlier, I made sure to fuse my Personae during New Moon.  The moon 
phase during which you fuse your Personae affects a number of factors, and in 
particular, the Persona's desperation attack.  In the case of Lilim, for 
example, if you use the combination of demons listed above in the fusion 
process, viz. Yuuki Gaki and Gedou Chinbira, fuse them at New Moon, and give 
the resulting Lilim Persona to a character with which it has high 
compatibility (like Main or Brown), Lilim will have a desperation move that 
(at a 25% probability) completely restores the character's life if his HP is 
reduced to 0.  This special ability is potentially useful in the Thanatos 
Tower, when dying is a common occurrence.  Using the demon combinations 
suggested above, you could get this desperation move for Fuutai, Phaleg, and 
Janus as well.  Of the other recommended Personae listed above, the 
desperation moves for Amenouzume and Urvasi depend on the order in which you 
fused the constituent demons.

(Feel free to contact me if you want more detailed information about Persona 
fusion, such as the effect of demon order in fusion, the effect of the phase 
of the moon.  There are a number of intricacies regarding Persona fusion that 
are not covered in any of the English sources currently available, and to 
compile them all here is outside the scope of this mini-guide.)

After visiting the Velvet Room, do some shopping.  After leveling up, you 
should have tons of cash.  Make sure to outfit everyone with at least the 
strongest hand weapons and guns (as well as ammo) available.  Armor is not 
quite as crucial, as you'll be able to purchase very powerful armor in the 
Thanatos Tower itself.  Go to the pharmacy and stock up on chewing souls (to 
restore SP; this item is not affected by the Tartaros effect) and some of the 
status restorers (such as Dis-Poison).  A hangonkou or two (or more) will be 
helpful as well; these items can be used in battle to restore any fallen 
comrades.

THE THANATOS TOWER

Upon entering the Thanatos Tower, you'll meet the tower's guardian, Yuriko.  
You'll be in a room with two candles, and in order to continue you must blow 
out one of them.  If you blow out the left candle, Main loses his Persona 
summoning abilities; if you blow out the right candle, Yukino loses hers.  
Since Main is most likely the one with the Lilim Persona, blow out the right 
candle, and force Yukino to go Persona-less for a while.  You're then able to 
explore the Thanatos Tower.
 
Before continuing, I would like to compile a list of things that make the 
Thanatos Tower extremely annoying:
1. You automatically start the dungeon with one character (either Main or 
Yukino) out of commission.  Since without a Persona, one's magic defense is 
zilch, any character who loses a Persona-summoning ability essentially 
becomes dead weight; he or she could do nothing other than physically attack.  
One hit from any magic spell, and they're dead. 
2. Any character who dies in the dungeon loses his or her Persona summoning 
abilities as well.  As such, it is extremely important to try and keep your 
characters alive.
3. To ensure that it's difficult to even keep your characters alive, a number 
of the demons in the Thanatos tower have either a.) instant death attacks, or 
b.) extremely powerful offensive magic spells that affect the whole party.
4. The loss of a Persona ability triggers what I call the "Tartaros Effect"; 
while this effect is on, healing items only restore a minimal amount of HP.  
5. Any character who lost his or her Persona ability could have it restored 
by venturing into a certain room in Tartaros.  The entrance to Tartaros is 
only on the second floor of the Thanatos Tower; if you're on the sixth floor 
and someone died (and thus lost the ability to use Persona), the only way to 
retrieve this power is head back down to the second floor and into Tartaros.
6. The demons in Tartaros range from level 32 and up.  Even if you completed 
the Hypnos and Nemesis Towers first, chances are the enemies in the Thanatos 
Tower are STILL stronger than you.  
7. Because of the high levels of the demons, you cannot receive spell cards 
from any of them if you start the Thanatos Tower first.  You must therefore 
master the art of contacting beforehand to make them happy or interested in 
you in order to avoid battle; if you make the demons angry (and thus give 
them an extra turn in battle), you'll likely die.
8. There is a time limit.  Exceed the time limit, and game over.  More on 
this below.
9. There are no proper save points anywhere.  Only continue points.  More on 
this below.
10. Like the other towers, once you enter the Thanatos Tower, you can't leave 
for any reason.  You have to clear the tower or die trying.

So, are you sure you still want to go on?

If so, the first thing you want to do is make your way straight to the only 
Augustya Tree in the dungeon, which is located on the second floor.  Like 
most of the other Augustya Trees in the Snow Queen Quest, the tree here can 
only make "continue" files, which are deleted each time you use them.  The 
best way to get around this is to copy your continue files to another memory 
card as a backup, and make sure to always have such a backup file available 
before restarting the game.

After finding and creating a continue point at the Augustya Tree, you'd want 
to make your way to Tartaros, the entrance of which is also on the second 
floor.  Once you're in Tartaros, you'll be able to enter a room in which 
Yukino's Persona (and that of anyone else's, whose Personae wielding 
abilities have been lost) is being sealed.  The first challenge is making 
your way to the second floor alive, particularly when all of the demons are 
stronger than you.

The first part of the Thanatos Tower, i.e. getting to the Augustya Tree and 
making your way to Tartaros, relies a lot on luck.  If you are very lucky, 
you'd only meet demons that you do stand a chance against in battle, even at 
relatively low levels (such as Datenshi Eligor).  Most battles, however, 
usually involve meeting some of the more annoying denizens of the tower, like 
Akuryou Kuchisake, which has an instant death attack.  You would also want to 
avoid, as much as you could, the possibility of allowing any of the demons 
you encounter to have a free turn to attack you.  Sometimes this is not 
avoidable (such as when you're attacked from behind), but if you fail at 
contacting any demons successfully, there may be a chance they'll get an 
attack in before you, so be careful.  

On the first two floors, until reaching the continue point and Tartaros, it 
is a good idea to negotiate your way through most of the battles.  If you're 
adventurous, you could try fighting some of these demons, but err on the side 
of caution, and know the demon's weaknesses before throwing your characters 
into battle.  

A note about contacting demons: When contacting demons in the Thanatos Tower, 
the trick is trying to avoid fighting as much as you could; in other words, 
you do NOT want to make the demons angry.  At the same time, you do not want 
to just make the demons happy; in many cases, the demon will just stick its 
tongue out at you and continue fighting.  A good way to ensure that the demon 
leaves is to elicit both anger and joy in the demon, until both parameters 
have reached their maximum (both are flashing), and then eliciting joy in 
your final attempt at contact; this confuses the demons and they'll most 
likely leave the battle scene entirely (be careful, however, because the 
demon may hit you and cause some damage before leaving).  If you elicit 
interest from the demon, it is also a good way to avoid battle.  Since you're 
at a low level, you cannot get spell cards from any of the demons, but the 
demon should respond positively if you ask it for an item.  You also have a 
good chance in obtaining experience points in this manner.

There are at least three enemies which you really want to look out for, at 
least while your party is still weak:
Akuryou Kuchisake (use Brown's Pick Up or Nanjou's Sarcasm to contact)
Youki Yakshini (use Main's Persuade to contact)
Kijo Arachne (use Ellie's Scary Story or Nanjou's Sarcasm to contact)

These enemies all have either instant death attacks, or strong physical 
attacks that effect the entire party.  At this point, it is best to exercise 
caution and not try to butt heads with them in battle.

The Thanatos Tower, like many of the dungeons in Persona, is designed such 
that you'd have to walk a great amount of its surface area to get from one 
point to another.  On the first floor, walk in a general counterclockwise 
fashion until you reach the stairs to the second floor (which is near the 
southwest corner of the room).  On the second floor, head north, then 
immediately make a turn eastwards when you reach the second intersection; 
you'll know you're going in the right direction if you find the ticking 
clock.  The Augustya Tree is located to the east of the clock (from the 
clock, you'd have to head south, east, and then north to find the Augustya 
Tree); the entrance to Tartaros is almost directly south of the tree.  When 
you reach the Augustya Tree, make a continue file (and copy it, as stated 
earlier), then head to the entrance of Tartaros (you'll know you're there if 
you find yourself in a room with a Cerberus).  Once you're in Tartaros, head 
a short direction westwards, and you'll find a room with Yukino's (or Main's) 
Persona.  If any characters died en route to Tartaros, their Personae will 
also be sealed here.  Talk to the mirror images on the wall to restore their 
Persona abilities.

With everyone's Personae back, the Tartaros effect is temporarily broken; as 
such, healing items that restore HP can be used with full potency.  However, 
if anyone dies, their Persona abilities will once again be sealed in 
Tartaros, and you'd have to go back to this same room to restore their 
abilities.  Tartaros also has a number of rooms which contain shards of the 
mirror; however, you're likely still too weak to survive most of the enemy 
encounters at this point, so exit Tartaros for now.  Once you're outside 
Tartaros and back in the Thanatos Tower, head back to the Augustya Tree and 
create another save file, then head northwards to the third floor.

On the third floor, if you head westward, you'll find a Velvet Room and a 
healing fountain (Trish charges 6000 yen for her services); if you head 
southward, you'll find a Rosa Candida armor shop and a weapons store.  (In my 
game, I first headed to the Velvet Room and gave my STAR Janus Persona to 
Yukino.)  Use this area as a base to level-up and gain cash.  At the very 
least, try to get enough cash to outfit everyone with the strongest body 
armor for sale at the Rosa Candida  shop.  In the case of males, this is the 
Jagd Armor, for 54000 yen, and for females, this is either the Parade Armor 
for 28080 yen, or the Dawn Armor (Akatsuki no Yoroi) for 30960 yen.  At the 
weapons shop, make sure to at least buy an Avenger for both Main and Brown, 
and Cupid bullets for everyone (it causes Charm Status, forces enemies to 
attack each other).

Make sure not to level up too much, because there is a time limit to this 
dungeon.  I did test this out by leaving the game on for a few hours; when I 
came back, I got a message from Yuriko basically saying "Ha ha ha, time's up.  
Game Over!", so a time limit definitely exists in the Thanatos Tower.  
According to Japanese sources, the time limit for the dungeon is three hours, 
but this is only the time you spend wandering the dungeon itself, and not the 
time you spend in battle, in the shops, on the status screen, etc.  At one 
point you will hear chimes ringing alongside the clocks as you wander the 
tower.  My hypothesis is that the chimes you hear signify a halfway point, 
and in my game it occurred as I was wandering through Tartaros for the 
missing mirror pieces, and after outfitting my characters with decent armor 
and weapons, and bringing them up to around level 30.  I was still able to 
clear the tower without any problems, so I think the time you're given is 
pretty generous.  

Once your party members are strong enough to withstand a few battles, head 
back down to Tartaros and begin collecting mirror pieces.  There are four 
mirror pieces to be found in Tartaros, all in four different rooms.  There is 
a "dark area" in Tartaros where you can't see where you are going, and the 
corridors within this pitch black area split into three paths.  You'll find 
one mirror piece in the northeast corner of Tartaros; to get here, take the 
north path (turn right or northwards when you first enter the dark area).  
There's another mirror piece to be found should you take the path heading 
west; to get here, enter the dark area from the east, turn left, and then 
turn right.  You find the room with the mirror shard when you head 
northwards.  There are two mirror shards to be found off the southern path.  
As you exit the dark area from the south, head to the southwest corner, where 
you'll find a chest with one mirror piece.  Head far north from here and find 
the room with the fourth mirror piece; you'll have to purchase it for 5000 
yen.  (There are numerous other rooms with treasure chests as well in 
Tartaros; many of them contain useful fusion items, but a number of them are 
also trapped.)  Once you have the four mirror pieces head out of Tartaros and 
back into the Thanatos Tower.  

When you reach the third floor, use whatever money you gained while searching 
for the mirror pieces to buy more armor (leggings, helmets, shoes, etc.) for 
those who need them.  If you have any extra money left, buy a Ghebard M2 
Rifle for Ellie/Nanjou and a Slavehunter shotgun for Yukino.  Continue on to 
the fourth floor; the dungeon from hereon is long but relatively 
straightforward.  On the fourth floor, do not miss the room on the southwest 
corner, there are of treasure chests here with a new sword for Main/Ellie, a 
Longinus spear for Brown, and an Oniguruma for Yukino.  The southeast corner 
of the fifth floor has a room with four treasure chests, including the 
Answerer sword for Nanjou.  

When you reach the sixth floor, you'll find yourself in a room with two 
treasure chests.  Yuriko will appear, and play another game with you; she 
tells you she has hidden a mirror shard in one of the treasure chests; if you 
choose the correct chest, you get to keep the mirror piece, if you choose 
incorrectly, there's a stiff penalty.  The chest with the mirror piece is the 
one on the left.  Do not open the chest on the right; if you open it, Ayase 
will lose her Persona summoning abilities (which you could only get back by 
heading all the way back down to Tartaros), and what's worse, you'll 
permanently lose the opportunity to obtain that mirror piece.

When you reach the seventh floor, you'll encounter the boss of the tower, 
Thanatos and its six tentacles.  If you were able to survive this far, you'll 
likely find the battle with Thanatos refreshingly easy.  The tentacles and 
the main body have different strengths and weaknesses.  Three of tentacles 
are weak against elemental attacks (fire/ice/wind/earth), and absorb non-
elemental attacks (such as Jio, Megido, etc.), whereas the other three 
tentacles are the opposite, absorbing elemental attacks and weak against non-
elemental ones.  The main body is weak against physical attacks.  Be careful 
of its Hell Eyes attack, which could kill off multiple party members.  Take 
out the tentacles first with the appropriate magic spells (Megidolaon, Maha 
Bufudyne, Maha Jiodyne, etc.) then concentrate on the body.  Make sure to 
have one character casting Media or Medirama each round.  If you have the 
Avenger equipped on both Main and Brown, you'll find their attacks quite 
useful.

After defeating Thanatos, read Yuriko's narrative, and you have officially 
cleared the Thanatos.  And pat yourself on the back, you have completed one 
of the most difficult challenges in RPG history, in my opinion.  You'll 
receive three Ambrosia for completing the Thanatos Tower first; you'll 
receive one each after completing the Nemesis and Hypnos Towers.

Now you are free to continue the Snow Queen Quest as normal.  If you go into 
Demon Mountain, you'll find the top floors open, so you can level-up here by 
fighting the monsters you had met in the Thanatos Tower.  (Interestingly 
enough, the doors leading to the lower levels will not be open yet, since 
access to them is apparently specific to which towers you have cleared.)

And with this, my job here is done, as a walkthrough for the rest of the Snow 
Queen Quest is outside the scope of this guide.  Remember, once you've 
completed the Thanatos Tower, the Hypnos and Nemesis Towers are pretty easy, 
and there won't be any major challenges until the final dungeon.  Until then, 
enjoy completing the remainder of the Snow Queen Quest, while being able get 
all five ambrosia, and thus being able to summon the ultimate Personae for 
all five characters.

-eof-

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