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Secret Dungeon Guide by Jessica

Version: 1.0 | Updated: 07/31/99

Written by and owned by: Jessica

douceviolette@yahoo.com

completed July 31, 1999
Version 1.0
                    
Some opening notes: No work is entirely one person's efforts. Thanks go 
out to darkfenrir, and my husband, Silent Cooking Master for all their 
help in the creation of this walkthru. I'd also like to express my
appreciation to Enix and tri-Ace for creating this wonderful console
RPG.

You may realize as perusing this walkthru that I recommend certain
characters more than others. The explanation is simple, I always play
with the same team: Rena, Dias, Claude/Bowman, and Ashton. However, I
fully advise you to experiment and use the team you're most confident
and comfortable with. If you have any suggestions on a Killer Move or
character who works effectively against a boss, please do not hesitate
to write and tell me! :)

Finally, this walkthru was created using Galaxy Mode (that means
everything is HARDER than usual), so my descriptions of monster may
sometimes seem a bit exaggerated in terms of difficulty.

                       ****Bonus Dungeon Walkthru****

This walkthru is a basic guide to help navigate and solve the various
trials in the bonus dungeon featured in Star Ocean: Second
Story. The bonus dungeon offers 13 challenging and treasure filled
levels to hack your way through. Unless you are very confident in your 
team, I do not recommend trying this dungeon until you are well into
the 90's level wise. Simply for the fact that in all 13 levels, not a
single save point exists. Only two escape portals are featured in the
latter levels as well, so use caution when entering.

Accessing the bonus dungeon is a multi-step, though not too
difficult task. On the last save point before the final boss in Fienal 
Tower, simply save your file and then proceed to leave. Take your
Synard to Fun City and enter the fighting arena, but NOT in Private
 Action. In the stands on the furthest side of the arena an elderly
Nedian is standing. Speak to him and he will offer to send you into a
virtual Expel fashioned of your memories. Pick the top answer twice
and you will be transported to Arlia. Note the purple penguin "Vern
Vern" standing behind you as you enter Arlia..he is a vital key to
returning to Expel. Simply speak to him and pick the second choice:
You silly Vern Vern. He will become infuriated and "bump" you back to
Nede. This way you can travel between both worlds at your
leisure. Now that you've reached Expel, leave the town and you will
find your Synard waiting for you! Board the Synard and head for a
large desert island in the southwest portion of the map (press Start a 
few times to access an entire view of the overworld map). You will see 
a pyramid-like building on the island's peninsula. Land near the
pyramid and enter.

Welcome to the Cave of Trials.

                   ------Level 1: Heraldic Ruins------ 

My only bit of warning about this level is that you avoid the room
with with a square of red tiles like the plague until you've cleared
out Levels 1-9. In this room you will see the floor has light
filtering through cracks between the tiles. If you walk over the
leftmost portion of this cracked area four times, the floor will
deteriorate and you will plummet to Level 9. However, even if you
manage to wade through the monsters and defeat the boss you cannot
return to the previous levels since the door to Level 8 MUST be opened
from the other side. So the only alternative left is to finish out the
Cave or to re-load.

That being set aside, the only strategy I would recommend with the
monsters here are to make sure you keep those Warlocks busy. An
efficient spell caster will do the trick nicely. The Living Armors can
pose a problem for your fighters, as they can turn their defenses very
high (they will glow in "rainbow" colors) and can only be struck from
the back. Magic will never effect them either, so make sure you have
at least one good fighter in your party at all times.

Item of interest: Link Stock 

The Link Stock is a precious item that becomes useful if you plan on
equipping a Link Combo accessory. With this,  you can "steal" Killer
Moves from the Link Stock without having to steal them from your allies. A
must for any warrior :)

Boss: Darkfeather 

Darkfeather is a succubus-like creature that can give you trouble or
fall rather easily. She is accompanied by two weirdknights who are
easily defeated, and should be first thing. Attack wise, she doesn't
have a large variety. She can cast Daemon's Gate, which causes
moderate damage to decently protected allies. She also has three
primary physical attacks: a slap, a swooping dive, and a projectile
that resembles a wing or fan. When she moves around or stops and waves 
her hand, you'll have trouble hitting her. If you can manage to
knock her unconscious (indicated by yellow stars that circle her head)
you should be able to keep a steady flow of hits going. Using multiple 
hit Killer Moves such as Dias' Illusion, or Ashton's Sword Dance help
tremendously. 

Your prize for a victory is access to level 2 and a pair of bunny
shoes! Bunny shoes are very useful in this dungeon as well as with the 
final boss, as when equipped they allow your characters to run with
lightning speed across the battle field. They also boost your STM
level by 80 points.


                      ----Level 2: Love Alley----

Love Alley presents the player with a rather strange puzzle to
solve. Near the entry stands a large stone tablet with some rather
vague clues written upon it that weave the story of a great love story 
between several people. Rotatable statues placed throughout the level
correspond to each person and must be rotated so they face the person
they love the most. The solution is as follows: 

Milene faces Luke (south)
Luke faces Milene (north)
Feria faces Luke (east)
Yufie faces Lloyd (south)
Lloyd faces Cistina (east)
Sharon faces Yufie (west)
Cistina faces away from all (south)

Monsterwise, this level offers a few challenges you will want to be
aware of. First there are the Giants, gorilla beasts with extremely
powerful attacks and surprising speed if you haven't acquired a few
pairs of Bunny Shoes yet. The Weirdaxes have a very swift attack that
will bother even the fastest-hitting fighter, so do use caution when
proceeding from statue to statue.

Item of Interest: Purity Leaf

The purity leaf, though not a very important item, is nice if you want 
to cook up some powerful meals with the Cooking Specialty. As far as I 
know, you cannot buy it anywhere but you CAN reproduce it.

Boss: Bloodgerell

This boss is a real pushover, and is accompanied by four
Huntingels. Bloodgerell can stone you, so be protected adequately. All
of these monsters can multiply and will if left idle or when they
weaken. Also, these monsters will all attack by throwing projectiles,
but seem to be knocked out easily. 

For this easy victory, you will receive passage to level 3 and a
Seraphic Garb. This is a nice piece of armor to equip on characters
who stay hurt more often than not. As HP goes down, the defense rate
of your ally will go up. This seems to work, so I highly recommend
using it.

                      ----Level 3: Single-path Cave----

This level can become quite frustrating, unless you have a very keen
sense of picturing the layout here or you draw a map. The idea is
simple: to open the door to the boss, you simply have to visit every
room without repeating a room twice. There are several solutions that
will work; here is mine.

>From the main entry, you will want to head out the rightmost
exit. Head right again, then down, then you will want to go left three 
times, up three times, then right three times, the last room having a
hallway that turns downward. After exiting this downward turn, you
will proceed left twice and then down and that should open it up!

Fighting will grow steadily more difficult from now on, with few
exceptions. Speed will become the most important element in the levels
to come, and this one is no exception. The battle with several
Lesserdemons can be deadly, as they move very quickly and can leap
upon a character, biting him or her for severe damage. Try controlling 
a good fighter, making sure to move in, strike and then run before a
pack of demons descend and attack.

Item of Interest: Slayer's Ring

The Slayers Ring is a most wonderful accessory, especially if you
prefer to conserve Killer Moves. When equipped it allows you to
execute several strikes on your opponent with only one push of the X
button. This seems to render the opponent unconscious quite often,
which is useful in any battle you may incur during your travels.

Boss:  Dreamshades

This fight features three Dreamshades, hourglass creatures that
possess the ability to stop all movement of your allies on the
field. This can be extremely dangerous, as the Dreamshades will take
the opportunity to attack your frozen characters. Problems will
definitely arise when the Dreamshades begin to use Dream Peace in
succession, leaving you helpless for several seconds. Try to force
your magicians to cast spells with short charging times, as to keep
the enemies busy. This will not only soften up the Dreamshades, but
will also allow your fighters to finish them off with ease. 

You will also be permitted to enter level 4 and receive a rather
useless item, the Magical Drops. This is an in-battle item that is
supposed to have a similar effect as Dream Peace, though personally I
never had successful use with this one.

                     ----Level 4: Dancing God Altar----

In this level, the Cave of Trials introduces an old trick handed down
from the days of Zelda 1 on the NES--invisible doors in walls. Near
the entry, you will see two boxes placed in what appear to be sealed
rooms. Fear not, simply approach the middle of each wall from the
bottom and press against it, you will hear a chiming sound and will
walk through the wall. Claim your treasures and then head right. You
will see a thin wall separating two large rooms; again, press near the 
bottom area of the partition and you will slide to the other
side. Pull the switch and then head back to the room with the treasure 
boxes and the fighting man. Now the sealed door is open, head inside
after confirming which character has Music Talent Specialty of Level
10, if not battle and level up until you acquire enough SP to master
Music Talent. Upon entering you will meet the Dancing Goddess who will 
ask you to select a character to play a song for her. Pick any
character whose Music Talent has reached Level 10 and she will be
delighted. (Note: This is also a good way to learn what instrument each 
character is best at playing, as they will play their favorite for the 
Goddess). If you have won her over, she will give you the Illusive
Shamisen, one of the two "hidden" instruments in the game.

Punkponks, a difficult version of the infamous rabbit monsters with
boxing gloves, are the primary foes you will encounter throughout
level four. They raid your party often, and can be difficult to defeat 
since they can reject your fighters very easily. Occasionally they
are joined by Huntingels, so this level is rather boring with
battles. 

Items of Interest: Illusive Shamisen and Extinction

The Illusive Shamisen is a neat little instrument because it features
two very powerful songs. The first, "The Green Gale", increases your
AGL rating by when played, though the difference is hard to tell at
times! :) The other song, "The Secret Power", will be the one you'll
want to play when building weaker allies. It temporarily raises both
HP and MP during the next battle, with a quick Fairy Heal or Cure All
you can have your allies on 9999 HP easily, as well as having 999 MP
with a few blackberries. 

Extinction is a very powerful spell for Leon that you will also
discover on this floor. Though it costs 90 MP, the power it packs
allows this spell to live up to its name, causing an average of over
9000 damage points per use. However, you will only be able to claim
this treasure if you are adventuring in Claude's scenario, otherwise
you will see the message "This is useless to us" when you open the box.

Boss: Miel 32

Defeating the Miel 32 should pose no particular difficulty, with a few 
fast and aggressive fighters in your team. Normal hits and the
Slayer's Ring, Meteor Ring, or Gale Earring make a deadly combination
against the ant-like missile shooter. Although its HP is quite high,
Miel 32 is alone and so keeping it busy comes rather easily. Your only 
prize for victory is passage to level 5.

                      ----Level 5: Lady's Revenge----

This level tries to sprinkle a bit of humor into the Cave of Trials by 
introducing you to Puffy, an egotistical and clumsy lady that roams
this floor. You meet her very early into the level, where she sends
some rather confusing signals towards the party. She asks you to guess 
her name and then asks what of three objects suits her best. For
perfectionists, choose "Puffy" as her name and "A Beast" for the
second answer. Regardless of the answers you choose, she will summon
the Weirdbeast to torment your party. You will soon discover even your 
most deadly spells and Killer Moves only register one point of damage
at a time. Unless you desire spending hours and hours chipping away at 
his over 3 million HP, just run away and both Puffy and Weirdbeast
will exit. You will meet Puffy later on, in a situation that should
seem familiar to you (note Rena's comment). Help the damsel in distress 
and she'll run off again, dropping a claw-like weapon called the
"WeirdSlayer". Hmmm...sounds useful, eh? After a bit more exploration, 
you will find Puffy yet again turned disgracefully towards the
wall. Talk to her and find out the Weirdbeast has escaped with the key 
to level 6! Now head towards the beginning of the floor, and in an
empty room you will see Weirdbeast. Defeat it, and you will receive
the Red Lotus Gem, the key to the next level down.

The beasts that lurk on level 5 have incredible fighting power and can
destroy your team in the the blink of an eye if you're caught
offguard. Lady Quimirias, a hybrid of woman and spider, can teleport
across the battlefield and will attempt to trap fighters amongst
them. They seem to block quite a bit of your hits too. Dragonaxes have
a very rapid and deadly strike that can down even the most speedy ally
in a few blows. Use caution when proceeding and try the "hit and run"
method for both of these adversaries.

Items of Interest: WeirdSlayer and Seraphic Garb

The WeirdSlayer not only serves as the key to killing the Weirdbeast,
but it also makes a fantastic weapon for Chisato. It will also kill
almost all the monsters you will encounter with the name Weird in
their names except the WeirdDevil from level 8.

You'll find another of those great Seraphic Garbs here, don't waste
this great piece of armor.

Mini Boss: Dreamshades

Same exact fight as before, just follow the same strategy you did the
first time :)

Boss: Weirdbeast

This has to be the EASIEST boss fight ever. Equip the WeirdSlayer on
either Rena, Bowman, Chisato, or Precis and after one hit, the Weirdbeast 
will be no more. 

                     ----Level 6: Burglar's Nest----

Weary warriors will welcome this level, as it features one of the two
escape points. The only "puzzle" to solve is a simple flick of a
switch. Eventually you will enter a room filled with several gray
statues of FunnyThieves, simply examine the statue in the lower right
corner of the room and choose to push the switch. Piece of cake, as
Rena would say :) 

Having the FunnySlayer will allow you to take advantage of those
MetalFunny soldiers you will run into. A FunnySlayer can be acquired
beforehand by helping out a lost scholar you will find originally in
the mining town of Salva after a certain point in the game. (Though I
am not sure yet of exactly the point when you first see him, sorry)
This lost scholar will ask you for directions to Herlie. In Salva,
tell him to go North and he'll exit quickly. Next, you will find him
in Mars, still lost and needing directions. This time, give him
instructions to go a little further east. However, you will not find
him in Herlie upon your next visit. You will have to cross to Lacour
and enter Hilton, the port town, to find our navigationally challenged
scholar. Tell him to get on the return boat and he'll leave you once
again. Follow him back to Herlie and enter the hotel. In the middle
room of the left hallway, you'll find him and he will thank you for helping
him and reward you with the FunnySlayer! When equipped, it will defeat 
those speedy MetalFunnys in one hit, as the WeirdSlayer does with the
Weirdbeast. 

Person of Interest: Santa

Occasionally, when you enter the statue room of level six, you will
find the Santa merchant. His wares will empty your wallet quickly,
though he sells some useful items that will aid you greatly in your
adventures such as the Tri Emblem, a far more powerful version of the
Tri Emplem accessory. Go Home Frogs are useful as well, for leaving
the Cave of Trials quickly. However, they will only allow escape from
the Cave of Trials. The Santa's Boots are more a novelty than anything,
and a darned expensive one! When equipped it will randomly give items
after staying in a hotel, not too useful but you may receive a few
good items from it. If you're in dire need of those unusual metals and
stones, Santa sells those as well.

Here is the Item list complete with prices, take a look and you'll see 
just how pricely his wares are!

Moonite:         1,500 fol
Orichalcum:      10,000 fol
Meteorite:       5,200 fol
Mithril:         15,000 fol
Damascus:        6,400 fol
Rune Metal:      7,000 fol
Green Beryl:     500 fol
Sapphire:        800 fol
Ruby:            400 fol
Star Ruby:       10,000 fol
Crystal:         500 fol
Sage's Stone:    50,000 fol
Diamond:         9,000 fol
Rainbow Diamond: 14,000 fol
Santa's Boots:   10,000,000 fol
Tri-Emblem:      5,000,000 fol
Go Home, Frog:   300,001 fol

Boss: FunnyThief Lv 99

This is a multi opponent fight, with only 2 dangerous enemies to worry
about. The three FunnyThieves in brown clothing will die fast, so do
not worry about them at all. Concentrate on first defeating the
Dreamshade and then with a FunnySlayer equipped, finish the Funny
Thief Lv 99 with one swift blow. The trick is to execute a successful
strike, which may or may not prove difficult. FunnyThieves move very
rapidly and swing thief swords with equal speed, and can wreak havoc
on a lone fighter if he strikes first.

For winning, you will receive a FunnySlayer, and passage to both the
Escape point and level 7. When you use the Escape point, you will be
automatically transported to the entry room on level 1. 

                      ----Level 7: Goddess Altar---- 

Nothing too difficult in navigating through this level, just make your 
way through, taking caution of the dangerous battles you'll most
likely encounter. Far into the east wing of this level, you'll find an 
item called the "Cracked Gem" in a treasure box located in the room
with the invisible door. This is the key for opening the door, however 
in its present state it will not do. You must use the Metalwork
Specialty to transform it into a Red Lotus Gem. I, being the careful
type, always exit the dungeon and save before, though I'm not sure you 
can fail. Once the Red Lotus Gem has been completed, talk to the stone 
tablet next to the altar with the pedestal. Then, place the Gem upon
the pedestal to open up the door leading to the boss. 

This level features probably the most lucrative battle for gaining
experience, especially if you have made a few Extension cards (an in
battle item that grants twice the experience points after battle). In
one particular fight, your party will be raided by several FunnyThief
Lv99's; though a challenging battle (even with a FunnySlayer
equipped if you're not careful), with an Extension card you
will receive a whopping 600,000 exp! To make an Extension card, use
the Art Specialty; Celine tends to make these quite often. You can
even reproduce them if you wish. The other monsters in this level can
be quite frustrating to conquer. Robinfakes will bombard you with
arrows from long distance, Last Avengers will victimize lone allies,
and Meigus will cast Noah to drown you all. The disadvantage will
probably be that with the FunnySlayer equipped, the battles will grow
longer with the other enemies due to its low attack rating. The key to
this level: Proceed with Caution.

Item of Interest: Bunny Shoes

Another pair of those oh-so-coveted greaves lie within the Goddess'
Altar. Trust me, in the levels to come you will need them, so make
good use of every pair of Bunny Shoes you have so far acquired.

Boss: Mithril Eater

Not the most aggressive boss, the Mithril Eater should remind you of
the Barker monster found in the Milne Mine on Energy Nede. The Mithril 
Eater has only one attack "Lost Patience" that is devastatingly
powerful, even to highly protected allies. He doesn't seem to use this 
attack very often, especially if you manage to keep him
unconscious. Just keep hacking away, and of course, if you have them
use multi-strike Killer Moves OR the Slayer's Ring and plain old
regular hits. You'll gain 60,500 experience and 60,000 fol.

The Million Staff will come into your possession after settling the
score with Mithril Eater, as well as passage to Level 8. This staff
will boost your magic power by an incredible 800 points! The even
better thing is that Noel can equip it, making his magic attacks and
healing many times more powerful than ever before! I know a lot of
players don't care for the Noel character (even if I personally seem
to prefer him to Rena, but that's another issue...;). Celine can equip
this wonderful mage's weapon as well.

Stats for Million Staff

Attk: 800
Hit:  80
Mag:  800
Stm:  30
Luc:  30
Crt:  40

Special effect: Converts 1/5 of damage from spells into user's own MP.

                         ----Level 8: Food God---- 

Hmmm..this level only features one enigma to dissolve, but it's one of
the strangest around. At one point, you'll come upon a wall with a
chubby face of a demon painted on it. Examine it, and the "Food God"
will ask you to feed it the dish that's the most delicious. I still
haven't exactly figured out how this one works. Eventually, after
feeding it so many times, the herb Mandrake will appear in the list of 
foods available to feed the "Food God". Offer the Mandrake and you'll
find out who was consuming all that food--it was Puffy! Though not dead,
she's not feeling up to par due to the poisonous Mandrake she just
downed. (Serves her right, I say "grin"). This will open the door
leading to the boss.

Monsterwise, this level is sort of a breather after the horrors of
level 7. The hardest fights will be those against the piggish dog
creatures called Poigers. They are often accompanied by a Dreamshade,
which of course poses the threat of using Dream Peace, so try to
defeat the Dreamshade first and then concentrate on slaying the Poigers.

Item of Interest: Special Tuna and Million Staff

The Special Tuna is one of the more useful foods in Star Ocean: Second 
Story. It replenishes your HP and MP by 70%. Good when you're out of
everything else and you need some heavy recovery.

If one isn't enough, how about two? Yes, on this level there is yet
another Million Staff to add into your inventory. Same stats, same
selling price.

Boss: Erysin Beast

The Erysin Beast is one of those nasty worm creatures that can eat one 
of your allies and suck the lifeforce right out of him or
her. Although there is only one, the "E-beast" has an enormous number
of HP and will take quite a while to bring down, and if you don't
knock it out, mostly likely it will begin to block your hits. 

A Gelatin Steak will be your reward for slaying the Erysin Beast. A
decent piece of meat the restores 60% of an ally's MP outside of battle.

                        ----Level 9: Sealed Coffin----

This level, will at first seem rather odd, as you will not encounter a 
boss your first time though. Simply explore for now, getting the
treasures scattered on this level, and then exit directly to level
10. You will return to this level later on, and find out the true
purpose of the Sealed Coffin.

Robinmaster, a stronger version of Robinfake, resides on this
simplistic floor. Just as her counterparts, the Robinmasters will
pummel you with arrows from a distance, and tend to block attacks and
then quickly counterattack. Cockatrickings can stone you with their
missiles, so be sure to protect yourself adequately. Nothing too very
dangerous here, if you allocate your allies amongst the opponents well.

Item of Interest: Valiant Boots

A nice pair of greaves, if you don't mind sacrificing the speed of the 
Bunny Shoes. If you're going to have a fighter in the back, (example:
Dias throwing Air Slashes from afar) these will suit that ally
nicely. For sticklers on matching armors, these are a MUST for
completing that FANTASTIC Valiant ensemble. :)

Boss: Wise Sorcerer

The only real danger in this battle will be the three Dreamshades that
accompany the Wise Sorcerer. Be sure to defeat them first, and then
conquering the lone wizard should be a fairly hassle-free task. You'll
gain the incredible, legendary Levantine Sword. What's more, despite
being only one sword, Ashton can equip it just as Dias and Claude can! 
Perhaps a bit lazy on the part of the game designers, but you won't
hear ME complaining ;)

Stats for the Levantine Sword

Attk: 3,000
Hit:  50
Guts: 50
Stm:  50
Crt:  50

Special effect: Grows in power as the user is in danger

                        ----Level 10: Decision Point----

Note: From this point on, the battling reaches the level of extreme
difficulty, and certain battles will seem impossible to win until your
allies have attained levels in the late 100's. Be sure to level up
appropriately, and equip the BEST armors, weapons, and accessories
possible.

As the name implies, you will be asked to decide what path you take to
reach the end of this level. You will notice a square drawn on the
floor separated into 16 tiles, stepping on the tiles will open certain
doors. However, revealing a yellow or red tile will lead you to a
"poisoned" room that will drop your HP while you traverse inside
it. Total exploration of these rooms depends on the combination of
tiles you step on. For the easiest path, begin in the upper right
corner tile, and take two steps left, then take two steps downward,
one left, and then go down again. This path is relatively short, and
allows you to avoid any of those "poisoned" rooms. However, you will
not collect any treasure following this path. Eventually you will
come upon the room containing the staircase to Level 11, if you have
Ashton in your party you will want to claim the treasure box before
heading down. It holds the secret Killer Move tri-Ace. Now, when you
try to descend the stairs, a robot will ambush your party.

Note: If you wish to avoid unnecessary fights for the moment, just
follow the basic path to level 11. Immediately after you complete the Cave of
Trials you will have the opportunity to collect all the boxes free of
monsters and will all the doors opened.

Robots and worms are the name of the game here. There are several
types of the ant-like missile shooting robots that vary dramatically in 
difficulty. The silver/lavender Miel128's will be the easiest to
defeat by far. Mindflayers can be aggravating, as they shoot missiles
that drain your MP with lightning speed. However, the pinkish
Liveflayers will be deadly. Not only are they very quick to move, they 
shoot missiles in nearly impossible to dodge spray. Timing, speed, and 
luck will save you in this case. The ClubGunners aren't nearly as
dangerous, however their Multiple Terror can mean instant death even
with 9999 HP. Ghastricgels, the black worms, will gulp up allies
quickly if the Dreamshade that often travels beside them gets the
chance to throw a Dream Peace or two. So all in all, this level boasts 
some of the hardest regular battles in the entire game.

Item of Interest: Killer Move tri-Ace, Meteor Swarm, Bunny Shoes,
Funny Slayer, Million Staff, Valkyrie Boots, Valiant Boots

Note: All items of interest, barring tri-Ace, are located in "poisoned
rooms".

tri-Ace (yes, spelled exactly the same as the company who created Star 
Ocean: Second Story), will become a useful Killer Move to equip for
those long battles where close-range fighting can be fatal. However,
only Ashton can use tri-Ace, so Opera fans, you'll have to miss out on 
this one :) A bit expensive to use, costing 45 MP per use, this
powerful KM has Ashton invoking the power of "the Almighty Tria" to
"overthrow all the enemies!" Few monsters will be able to block this
one, as it damages all enemies present on the screen and with high
numbers. Probably one of my top three favorite KM's in SO: SS. (The
other two are Dias' Air Slash and Ashton's Sword Dance). But I'M not
biased towards swordsmen :D

Meteor Swarm, a celestial spell for everyone's favorite treasure
hunting witch Celine, matches Leon's Extinction in terms of power, and
in length of endurance. Costing 80 MP, this one works quite
effectively despite the long casting time, which players who use
Celine often should be used to. :>

If speed is your need, then rejoice! The third pair of Bunny Shoes
lies within your grasp. (Did that sound a little too Noel-esque?)

For your leveling-up convenience, a third FunnySlayer to add to your
weaponry. Take this one to level 7 when you feel the need to fry some
Funnies.

Three is the secret number on level 10, you'll find the third of
those amazing Million Staffs here to power up those mages.

Valkyrie Boots will suit any lady warrior who desires the maximum in
defense. These will work nicely for Celine or Rena, as being both
magicians, will stay in the backlines without a dire need of the Bunny 
Shoes' speed.

The last of the power items you'll collect in this most generous level 
is a secondary pair of Valiant Boots.

Boss: Geo-guardian

This fellow should seem familiar to you from the Fields of Power and
Courage. However, a steady stream of hits from your fighters will keep
him locked up for the entire battle. If you catch him early enough, he
most likely won't even be able to get a single attack off, making this
battle somewhat of a breather after the long trek through level 10. He
has two primary attacks Release Punch and Smash lash, and if you do
not defeat him fast enough, he will transform into a small robot that
will constantly use a potent laser attack called "Extermination".
Geo-guardian, being a good sport, will christen you "Most Powerful in
the Universe" as a nifty little bonus for defeating him :)

You will receive a Valiant Guard for defeating Geo-guardian. This
shield gives a nice boost to your AC rating, and all male characters
can equip it, so it's quite nice for Noel and Bowman who cannot equip
some of the stronger mails.

                         ----Level 11: Dragon's Den----

An extremely short level, with no puzzles, traps, or mysteries to
solve. However, there is the second of the two escape points here,
which will feel a blessing after the long and gritty battles you may
have endured.

Another challenging level, featuring the likes of those nasty
Ghastricgel worms, WeirdMages (which can be downed with a WeirdSlayer
equipped in a single blow) who will send Explode spells in your
direction, as well as HellMaster, a Shin-like demon armed with
Spoiling and Word of Death. Occasionally, you'll be raided by a single 
Owlbear, who resembles the Geo-guardian very much.

Boss: Dragon Tyrant

Though it resembles Synard more than a dragon, the Dragon Tyrant can
be one of the more irritating bosses to battle. First, he floats,
which can cause problems for striking outside of using Killer
Moves. His powerful breath not only does severe damage, but it also can 
stone your allies, so be prepared. This is an excellent place to test
out the tri-Ace Killer Move. It will allow Ashton to stay a fair
distance from the Dragon Tyrant, while your other allies keep him
busy. Projectile Killer Moves will be the way to go, but be sure to
watch your MP as this battle can grow long depending on how often the
Dragon Tyrant blocks. 

In addition to a Valiant Guard, you'll learn the last Skill 'Float'
for defeating the Dragon Tyrant. With this skill, you will be able to
pop the enemy into the air with your regular strike, which can be
either helpful or harmful depending on what exactly you're
fighting. If nothing else, you won't have that empty space bothering
you at the bottom of the Skills list anymore. :D

Note: From this point on, when you re-enter the Cave of Trials, you
will be asked if you would like to travel with only one companion
along with the main character. This becomes necessary for entering
level 12, but otherwise it doesn't serve much purpose except of course 
fighting is harder and escaping can be easier.       

                      ----Level 12: Hall of Warriors----

Accessing the door to this level will put a heavy strain upon two
unlucky warriors; for you have to brave the dangers of the Cave of
Trials with only the main character and one additional party
member. High levels will be useful, not only for the obvious reason of
surviving, but also for increasing your chances of a successful escape
if you find yourself facing an overwhelming battle. Escape formation
should help out, should such an unexpected battle arise. Use the same
pattern on the tiles for level 10, Decision Point and then quickly
make your way through to the boss.

The monsters here are exactly the same as those in level 11, so
proceed with caution.

Items of Interest: 2 Battle Suits, Valkyrie Guard, and Bunny Shoes

The Battle Suit is very similar to the Valiant Mail, the only
difference being it bestows less of a Guts bonus than the Valiant
Mail. However, anyone can equip this fine piece of armor, which gives
it a bit of an advantage. It also sells for a sky-high 26,000,000 fol!

The Valkyrie Guard is the woman's equivalent to the Valiant Guard, and 
just as the Valiant Guard, any woman can equip it for a nice boost in
AC value.

The last of the Bunny Shoes found in the Cave of Trials, allowing you
a full set of these speedy greaves for an entire fighting party of
four.

Boss: Phoenix

The Phoenix, even with only two party members, shouldn't hassle you
all too much if you keep him a safe distance. Try using Killer Moves
that throw long distance and high-reaching projectiles, such as
Ashton's Hurricane Slash, or Opera's Alpha on One. With luck and good
timing, the Phoenix will be thrown back and knocked unconscious most of
the battle. Spell casters should try to stay in the back, helping with
occasional attack spells, or perhaps boosting the stats of your
fighter. Phoenix doesn't have all too many attacks. There is Master
Attack, which will cause the heaviest damage. He can heal himself with
Cure All and attack with Magnum Tornado if left untouched. Either way,
the Phoenix doesn't have nearly the HP of the average boss, so victory
should be no problem.

As a reward, you'll receive a vital key to completing the Cave of Trials, and
accessing the deadliest swords in the entire game: the Holy Farwell
Sword. Not only powerful in its own right, if you take it back to
level 9, the coffin that lies there will open and reveal the boss that 
was lacking before. (See the walkthru for level 9 for more details on
the boss). 

Stats for the Holy Farwell Sword

Attk: 1,900
Hit:  70
Mag:  70
Crt:  15
AC:   70

Note: Just as the Levantine Sword, Ashton will be able to equip this
one as well.

Note: From this point on, a full party of four can be taken to level
12, so worry not. The Phoenix, being a..well phoenix bird, will return 
to challenge you again and again, though at times he takes longer to
come back than others. I highly recommend you re-group with your
remaining allies before proceeding back to level 9. You will have to
acquire the Levantine AND Holy Farwell Swords to open the door to the
final layer of the dungeon, so returning will almost be mandatory anyhow.

                     ----Level 13: Holy Nest of Angels----

Nothing too difficult in understanding this level. You'll want to pull 
the levers that you'll find in the wings that branch off from the main 
room. There are a few treasures to pick up along the way, but be
careful not to trigger any unwanted battles in those empty "spaces"
you'll find in the treasure box rooms. Though they perhaps seem to
hold some hidden object or switch, they are basically traps to give
you battles.

Not exactly a great variety of monsters lurk in the final level of the
Cave of Trials. SoulMasters, yet another form of wizards, will
probably be the foes you encounter most often, and will cast
Extinction on your party if not kept busy. Hell-Servant, cousin to the 
Phoenix bird, will probably bring the most troubles to your party. Not 
only does it boast a high amount of HP, the Hell-Servant moves quite
quickly and will block many attacks. It can cast MeteorSwarm as well
as using the ever-agonizing Master Attack. Rock-demons will blast your 
party to the netherworld with "Lost Patience" should you fail to keep
them unconscious for too long. However, with a Discovery Card you may
be able to receive a Valkyrie Armor from it randomly, so it's worth
trying the fight if you're strong enough.

Item of Interest: Valiant Guard, Valiant Mail, Angel Armband, and
Silver Trumpet

Same Valiant Guard as you previously have received, so waste not the
opportunity to equip it.

The Valiant Mail is another great armor for warriors who want to maximize AC
ratings. Gives a bonus of 60 Guts as well.
 
The Angel Armband will become a must should you wish to challenge the
secret form of the final boss or the Iselia Queen, as it protects you
nicely against every element. Star-elemental spells such as Southern
Cross and Meteor Swarm will even heal the ally wearing this one, which
has obvious advantages by far. Specified stats are as follows:

Hit:  60
AC:   60
Avd:  60
Guts: 60
Luc:  60

The Silver Trumpet is the secondary "hidden" instrument in the game,
and offers two rather unusual tunes to compose with it. The first,
titled "The Evil Power" allows you to summon the darker side of
Gabrie, Iselia Queen. Do not summon Iselia unless you have an
extremely strong team, plenty of revival items, and a whole lot of
patience. She has 3.3 million HP to drain, and her attacks are more
deadly than her alter ego. The second song is "The Melody of the Gods"
and has a similar effect to using the Orchestra Super Skill,
increasing the chances of a successful item creation even without the
necessary talents.

Boss: Gabrie Celesta

The ultimate keeper of the final level of the Cave of Trials is an
angelic being, Gabrie Celesta (perhaps a reference to "Gabriel"
Indalecio's name in the Japanese version). As you might expect she's
quite a formidable opponent, but victory isn't as impossible as you
might assume. Keeping her busy will be the top priority, which can be
accomplished by tossing her around in a multi-strike Killer Move. She
can cast Noah, Foehn and Star Flare, and boasts quite a few physical
attacks. One is a cross-like projectile that will drill an unaware
ally to a quick death. She also throws a disc-like object that whirls
around, and seems to track allies which makes it very hard to
avoid. She will also fly around the room protected by a circular
barrier, which should remind you of the Warlocks from level 1, so try
to keep an eye on her whereabouts at all times. The strategy I
employed was to run in beside her, execute a multi-hitter KM and then
run away and dispense the necessary items. She has a fair amount of
HP, 1,000,000 in all but this goes surprisingly fast if you don't worry 
about draining those points rather than keeping her occupied.

This victory will leave you going home loaded down with
treasures. You'll receive yet another Holy Farwell, and she will
entrust you with the Silver Trumpet. Not only that, the treasure box
behind her carries the Angel Armband, on of the best Accessories in
Star Ocean: Second Story. As a nice little bonus, you'll get your
chance to explore the entire dungeon free of monsters, all doors open,
with heroic music to take your "victory lap" in. Take this opportunity 
to collect any items you left undiscovered. You will note the escape
points are temporarily disabled, but when you return to the dungeon
they will be re-activated. The option to travel as two will no longer
be available on your next visit as well.

copyright 1999.



                               





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