Final Fantasy IV: The After Years Ceodore Solo Challenge Guide Version 1.00 Copyright 2012 Kenneth B. Fletcher (aka Charpig) Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org All trademarks and copyright contained in this document are owned by their respective trademark and copyright holders. This guide may not be posted on other web sites or publicly displayed without express written permission of the author. It may only be used for personal, private use. It may not be used in any way to make a profit, and the content of the guide may not be altered in any way. Any violation of these conditions will be considered copyright infringement. I take no responsibility for anything that may happen as a result of using my guide. Introduction One of the more famous challenges of the original Final Fantasy IV was to beat the game with only Cecil. I wanted to see how his son Ceodore would fare in the sequel. I played through his tale and the Final Tale using only Ceodore. I was pleasantly surprised at the results. I was actually able to beat the Ultima Weapon and Shinryu, and most of the other bosses as well! There was only one mandatory boss I was unable to beat, and that was Ahriman. But aside from that, Ceodore is perfectly capable of beating the endgame by himself. So, that brings me to this guide. I am basing this off of the PSP version of the After Years, but it should apply to the Wii Ware version as well. The only difference is that the Wii Ware combined Ceodore's and Kain's Tales into one, the PSP version keeps them separate and adds a challenge dungeon for Ceodore. When writing this guide, I assumed that the reader has beaten the After Years at least once, so the player will be familiar with the game's basic mechanics and story progression. The player should also know how to progress through the game's dungeons, and where the treasures are located. As such, this guide focuses mostly on battle strategies for Ceodore. The rules for this challenge: First Rule This challenge only applies when Ceodore is available. Only Ceodore can be used to attack enemies. No one can heal or use buffs on Ceodore, except Ceodore himself. All other characters must be KOd by the end of each battle. Obviously, this means band techniques are forbidden. Second Rule In the final dungeon, Ceodore is the only character allowed in the party. All other characters must stay behind at the Lunar Whale. The only exceptions to this rule are when certain characters are required to be in the party in order to progress the story. Cecil, Golbez, and Rosa are allowed in the party when it comes time to fight the Dark Knight. Rydia is allowed in the party for the battles with Ashura, Leviathan, and Bahamut. However, Ceodore must do all the work during the battles. Third Rule Items may be ported from other tales. For my run, I did port over Adamantite from other tales and got Ceodore a full set of Adamant equipment. In the future, I may see how it goes without Adamant gear. But for now, the Adamant gear is allowed. Even with a full set of Adamant gear, battles are still sufficiently challenging. Fourth Rule Regarding Silver and Golden Apples, and Soma Drops, only ones found in chests may be used. They are not allowed to be farmed from enemies. It defeats the point of the challenge to get Ceodore to 9999 HP, as he should rely on his natural HP growth. Exception to the Rules There is only one exception to the above rules, and that is the mandatory boss fight with Ahriman in the Depths. It seems impossible to win that fight with a solo Ceodore, even at Level 99. So, for that fight and that fight only, I will allow the use of additional characters. General Tips Take full advantage of attack items, especially Spider's Silk. Spider's Silk affects all enemies, and stacks up to four times. Not only that, Spider's Silk ignores Reflect! In the After Years, there is unlimited inventory space, so don't be in a rush to sell items. Also, take full advantage of Ceodore's spells, when he learns them. Blink and Haste, in particular, make fights much easier. There are some enemy formations that are just too difficult for Ceodore to handle on his own. Don't be afraid to run from them if they appear. I will call most of them out in the walkthrough, but there will be times when you will have to use your own best judgement. In many cases, equipment that provides status protection or elemental resistance is far better than equipment that simply has high defense power. I haven't found a single use for Ceodore's Awaken ability, so don't use it. All it does is leave Ceodore in single digit HP, even if you finish the battle before it wears off. Be prepared to gain several more levels than in normal play, especially in the early game. You will probably get a Game Over several times during this run, so don't get discouraged. If you have not done so, do all the other tales and get all the Adamantite from the challenge dungeons. In the Wii Ware version, there was a glitch that allowed the player to get infinite Adamantite. That glitch has been fixed in the PSP version, but it only takes 8 pieces of Adamantite to fully outfit Ceodore with Adamant equipment. Unlike in the original Final Fantasy IV, level ups are fixed all the way to level 99. So, there are no worries about losing stats upon a level up. Pay close attention to the moon phases. The moon phase changes every 30 minutes or after resting with an inn or tent (Tents do not revive KOd allies, though). The Waxing Moon (White Magic up, Black Magic down) phase tends to benefit Ceodore the most. The Waning Moon (Attack up, Special down) can also benefit Ceodore, but it also powers up the enemies. The New Moon (Special up, White Magic down) is bad for Ceodore, and should be avoided. The Full Moon (Black Magic up, Attack down) is very bad for Ceodore if facing spellcasters, but can be used to play defensively against strong physical attacking enemies. A good time to level grind is while waiting for a bad moon phase to change to a good one. Fighting during an advantageous moon phase is just as important as being at a high level. Rare item drops may occur, but I wrote this guide without taking advantage of them. I tried to make all of my strategies as non-chance based as possible. Walkthrough The Adamant Isle Not much to mention here, as Ceodore is on his own anyway for the first dungeon. Don't buy any of the equipment in Mythril, just take the stuff off of Biggs and Wedge. Biggs and Wedge are only with Ceodore for the first room, then they rejoin after the boss fight with the Sandworm. The first real challenge in this playthrough comes from the 2 Belphegors that attack on the airship. Ceodore is completely outclassed in this battle, at least at first. To win this fight, I leveled up Ceodore to 16. It sounds daunting, but doesn't take too long. By this level, Ceodore learns Cura and gains a Defense Multiplier due to having a shield. No matter what, the party will always start the fight in the front row. Have Wedge move the party to the back row while Biggs kills himself and Wedge off with Fira. While being in the back row makes Ceodore miss quite a bit, it also makes the enemies miss quite a bit. When Ceodore gets low on health (less than 150 or 100 HP), use Cura. I did this fight during the Waning Moon phase, to make things go a little faster. But you may want to do this in another phase, so the Belphegors don't do quite as much damage. Once one Belphegor goes down, the fight becomes much easier. If you are still having trouble, you could remove some of Ceodore's heavy equipment to increase his Evasion (for example, replace the Iron Gloves with the Ruby Ring). If the enemies can't hit him, they can't hurt him. If all else fails, then Ceodore needs to go up a few levels, and try again. He should gain an Attack Multiplier or two, significantly increasing the damage he deals. Once the Belphegors are beaten, control switches to Cecil. Ceodore can use all of Cecil's equipment, except for the Kingsword. But, Cecil might need his equipment for his battles. At least remove the Lustrous Shield during the battle with Bahamut. Complete Cecil's section, and control switches back to Ceodore. Mysidia and the Devil's Road If you removed any of Cecil's equipment, give it to Ceodore. The Hooded Man has a Power Armlet that Ceodore can equip as well, increasing his Str. The Large Shield can be equipped as well, but I like the Lustrous Shield better, as it boosts Ceodore's Spr and reduces damage from undead enemies. The other equipment that the Hooded Man has cannot be used by Ceodore. Go to Mysidia and recruit the two mages. At the shop, buy Gaia Gear for Ceodore. Even though the Sage's Surplice found in the Devil's Road is stronger, the Gaia Gear blocks Gradual Petrify, very useful for some battles. During battle, the Black Mage should kill everyone off but Ceodore with Level 2 spells. Ceodore should run from the Yellow Jellies (and any other flan enemies). Even though you could defeat them with attack items, you would have to keep buying them, and flans just aren't worth it. If Ceodore encounters a Lilith, kill her with Cura spells, as she does not counter against them. The enemies here should give quite a bit of EXP for a solo character, especially Lilith. I got Ceodore to Level 24 by the end of Devil's Road. Also, don't be afraid to make more than one trip through Devil's Road if Ceodore is too weak at first. If he needs to rest, just go outside Mysidia and use a Tent (remember that Inns revive KOd members). There is also a Save Point halfway through the road. Back in Baron Go to the armory and buy an Iron Sword, Pointed Hat, and Iron Shield (if you do not have the Lustrous Shield). I suggest equipping Ceodore with mage style equipment rather than knight style equipment. Although mage equipment has lower defense, it gives better magic defense, and more importantly, better physical evasion. In this solo challenge, physical evasion is very important. Go to the item shop and buy as many Hi Potions, Spider's Silks, and Tents as you can afford. Hi Potions restore a solid 500 HP, much more than a Cura spell at this point. Spider's Silks aren't necessary right now, but they will be useful later. Baron will become Ceodore's base for the rest of his tale, so he can always return later when he has more gil. Get the Key of Baron from Cid's daughter and enter the Waterway. The Waterway has stronger enemies, but they also yield more EXP. Equip the Gaia Gear before opening the chest with the Black Lizard in it. That way, he won't be able to petrify Ceodore. This chest yields the Coral Sword, which will teach those pesky water enemies a lesson. If Lilith appears, you can just use a single Hi Potion to kill her, conserving MP. Run from the Baron Guards, at least until Ceodore can beat them in a single hit. Otherwise, they will counterattack by shrinking Ceodore, which is not fun. I advise to keep Ceodore in the front row, to maximize his attack power. Putting him in the back doesn't really seem to help reduce damage, at least not until his Defense Multiplier rises. Don't waste a Tent at the Save Point, because after the events at Baron Castle, both Ceodore and the Hooded Man are restored to full health. This, of course, means you have to kill off the Hooded Man again. The Chocobo Forest southwest of Baron is still there. It has a useful White Chocobo that restores MP. Mist Cave Beat the Centaur Knight at the entrance, and go in. Make sure that Ceodore is at least Level 25, so that he knows Float. He should be getting close to Level 30 by now. Cave Bats aren't too hard to beat, as they only attack with Bloodfeast. Plus, they tend to give good EXP. Ogres can hit pretty hard, so heal if need be, even during battle. I suggest running from Mindflayers, Cait Siths, and Hell Needles. Before fighting the Tunneler, make sure to cast Float on Ceodore, to avoid its Earthquake attack. Use a Spider's Silk on the Tunneler to slow it down, then just attack it. Heal with Hi Potions, as they are more reliable than Cura. After getting through the Mist Cave, congratulations! You've completed Ceodore's Tale with just Ceodore! If playing the Wii Ware version, skip ahead to the Kain's Tale section. If playing the PSP version, there will be an extra Challenge Dungeon for Ceodore. Of course, we aren't shying away from it. Ceodore's Challenge Dungeon (for PSP players only) To access the Challenge Dungeon, go back into the Mist Cave, go through the door, and talk to Namingway (or Challengingway, whatever). Ceodore should be at least Level 30. Make sure to keep the Gaia Gear equipped, to avoid the Stone Gaze of the Ice and Black Lizards. It is prudent to run from any battle in which Ceodore is ambushed or attacked from behind, unless it is an easy formation to beat. Heal Ceodore to full HP after each battle, as the enemies in here are quite tough for Ceodore's current level. Most of the chests could be skipped over, but I advise getting the one with the Mythril Sword. It is guarded by a Lamia. It will confuse Ceodore after every attack, but she will usually attack Ceodore again before he can hurt himself. It's not too difficult, despite not having a Headband. Run from Mors, as it is impossible to beat them. They heal themselves to full after every attack, so Ceodore cannot win until he can beat them in a single hit. Skuldiers can be tough to handle, but not impossible. Hi Potions are effective against them, since they are undead. Always run from Steel Golems. They will put Ceodore to sleep with their physical attacks, and then beat the HP out of him. If you get ambushed by a Steel Golem, you will most likely die. It shouldn't happen too often, but at least there are two Save Points in the dungeon if you need to reset. Vs. Adamant Golem Ah yes, the Big Boss of this dungeon. First, be in any moon phase except Waning Moon. Then, heal Ceodore to full HP and place him in the back row. Set his equipment to give him the highest Defense possible, then enter battle. Use 4 Spider's Silks on the Golem (the highest they stack up to). The Golem will move closer twice. The third time he moves closer (he will "practically be on top of you") he will unleash a brutal three hit combo. If Ceodore is not in good health, he is toast. If Ceodore is in the Waning Moon phase, he is burnt toast. So, be sure to heal Ceodore before the three hit combo, and have him defend. Afterwards, the Golem will be stunned, allowing Ceodore to attack vigorously. Move Ceodore into the front row to maximize his offense, as the Golem will not attack during this phase. When the Golem regains his footing, he will attack again, so move Ceodore back to the back row. The Golem is fairly easy once you have his pattern down, but don't get cocky. I first beat the Golem at Level 36. This fight becomes much easier at Level 40, when Ceodore learns Blink. After the fight, Ceodore gets a random treasure from the chest. The treasure is determined as soon as the dungeon is entered, so don't bother trying to reset at the save point within the dungeon. Keep at it until he gets the Adamantite. I wouldn't worry about getting the other treasures, as more powerful equipment will be found in Kain's Tale. Ceodore can level up to 50, but it's not necessary since he still has Kain's Tale to go. I ended his tale at Level 44. Kain's Tale Import the data from Ceodore's Tale and get started. After blowing through the section with Dark Kain, you will gain control of Ceodore again. There isn't much to be found at Mist, except for a Blood Sword. The Mist Cliff shouldn't be too hard, but keep that Gaia Gear on Ceodore in case he encounters Ice Lizards or Medusas. There is a section where Ceodore falls off, and you have to find him with the Hooded Man. Hopefully, he can get to Ceodore without any random encounters, because he will get slaughtered by the enemies, being at only Level 15. Once Ceodore is reclaimed, resume his rampage. Don't forget to pick up the Sleep Blade. At Kaipo, buy the Fire Brand and equip it on Ceodore before resting at the inn. You may buy some armor if you wish, and some status recovery items. At the inn, 3 Zombie Infantry attack, but they are easily beaten with the Fire Brand. Waterway I would leave the Sleep Blade on Ceodore for this area, since quite a few enemies are resistant to Fire. Blaze Toads can turn Ceodore into a toad, so run from them if an ambush occurs. After each story event, the Hooded Man is revived, so kill him off again. The chest after the save point contains a Mythril Golem, but it should be no match for the Sleep Blade. The reward from the battle is the Ice Brand. Before entering the second half of the dungeon, make sure it is the Waxing Moon phase. Also, do not put any elemental armor on Ceodore, as it will make him weak to the opposite element, and the boss uses both Fire and Ice spells. Against the boss, use a Spider's Silk to slow down all of its parts, then attack the head. Once the head is beaten, the whole body disappears. If Ceodore has reached Level 47, he will know Haste, so use that to gain an advantage. Vs. Dark Kain After the events at Damcyan, the party returns to Baron with Cid. A battle with 3 more Zombie Infantry occurs at the gate. After the battle, go back to the world map and save. The next battle must be done with the Hooded Man, who is really Kain Highwind. Revive Kain to full health, and put the best armor on him. The weapon doesn't matter, as he will be given the Dragoon Lance. It is possible to beat Dark Kain with regular Kain at base level (15). For the first part of the battle, Kain simply needs to survive. Use a Spider's Silk on Dark Kain, and just use a Hi Potion after every one of his attacks. In the second part of the battle, reapply Spider's Silk, and also use Hermes Sandals on Kain. Dark Kain alternates between using regular attacks and jump attacks. Again, heal after every attack, as it only takes two hits to kill a Level 15 Kain. As far as offense, hit Dark Kain with jump attacks. They do impressive damage, even being at such a low level. Dark Kain will fall to his knees when low on HP, just like a player character would when near death. It took me a few tries to win with a base level Kain, but it can be done once the pattern is learned. After Dark Kain is beaten, go to the throne room, and Kain's Tale is complete! Note: Keeping the Hooded Man at Level 15 until he becomes the Holy Dragoon is actually beneficial, as the Dragoon has much better HP and MP growth rates. If you were to level up Kain later, he would get much more HP and MP than he normally would. However, his other stats will be unaffected. Note that base level Kain actually knows a spell that he doesn't have enough MP to even cast. Kain's Challenge Dungeon After the tale is over, the party will be Ceodore, Kain, Rosa, and Cid. Get into a battle, KO Kain, Rosa, and Cid, then head into the Challenge Dungeon. I hate to say that Ceodore will get rubbished by the enemies here, even if he is at max level. So, he will be running away most of the time. However, Ceodore will want to open the chest with the Adamant Golem. It's the exact same as in the earlier Challenge Dungeon, but this time around, Ceodore is much stronger, so he should be able to win and score another piece of Adamantite. Don't even think about going into the lower floors of the dungeon. The Mini Satanas, Warriors, and Thunder Dragons will have Ceodore for dinner. It is impossible to beat the Curse Dragon with a solo character, as he will put either instant death or Doom on him (neither status has any protection at this point). So, we will be forfeiting one piece of Adamantite. After getting whatever treasures you can, max out your supply of Spider's Silks at Baron and buy any other items you would like. Ceodore can easily be trained to Level 50 (the current maximum level) by fighting the enemies outside of Baron. He will learn Curaga in the process. Semi-Final Stats for Ceodore If you want an idea of how strong Ceodore will be, these are his stats at Level 50: Name: Ceodore Level: 50 Job: Red Wings Max HP: 2893 Max MP: 297 Strength: 48 Agility: 38 Stamina: 38 Intelligence: 22 Spirit: 48 (38 base, +10 with equipment) Attack: 9 x 99 Precision: 92% Defense: 7 x 32 Evasion: 54% Magic Defense: 3 x 17 Magic Evasion: 24% Equipment: Ice Brand Mythril Shield Priest's Miter Sage's Surplice Ruby Ring Now, why did I give Ceodore such seemingly poor equipment? Because he needs Magic Defense for fighting the Mysterious Girl. Ceodore doesn't get a chance to change his equipment between fighting Cecil and the Mysterious Girl, and Cecil is easy while Blink is in effect. The Final Tale Okay, now it is time to move onto the Final Tale. For the first part, while still on Earth, you will be controlling Edge's team most of the time, so Ceodore will not be involved. But Ceodore will still have a number of interesting fights, including a duel with his dad. And, once we get to the moon, Ceodore will get a chance to show what he is truly made of! Time to fulfill your Lunarian destiny, Ceodore! Stuff with Edge's Team While controlling Edge, I suggest you get all 21 Small Tails and trade them in for a Blue Tail, a White Tail, and a Gray Tail. If you have tails from other chapters, hold on to them too. Also, be sure to find the Ribbon. If you got the Adamantite from the other chapters, you should have 9 pieces (and we only need 8). The team should also buy X-Potions from the Namingway in Baron. There will be a one-on-one fight between Kain and Cecil, but it is scripted. For the scene when Ceodore's party fights Cecil, just cast Blink on Ceodore. It is such a short battle that it's not worth it to KO the other party members. When it comes time to assault Castle Baron, unequip all the useful items from Edge's team. Either be in Waxing or Waning Moon phase. Vs. Cecil and Odin During this battle, KO Rosa. It doesn't matter if Kain, Edward, or Cid are KOd, as they will not be used in the next battle. Ceodore should protect himself with Blink while he attacks Cecil. After a few hits, Odin comes to his senses and knocks out Cecil. But the real battle is yet to start. Vs. Mysterious Girl Ready for a real boss fight? First, equip the Defender and Aegis Shield on Ceodore (gotten from the Lunarian's Tale). If you do not have those items, just equip the strongest gear in your inventory. Use Spider's Silk on the girl, and Haste on Ceodore. In the meantime, the other party members should KO themselves, shouldn't be too difficult with the level 3 spells from Rydia and Golbez. Once Ceodore is buffed with Haste, cast Reflect. The Mysterious Girl casts level 3 spells that will bounce right back in her face. However, Reflect does not protect against the Leviathan or Bahamut summons, so be ready to heal with X Potions. When Ceodore is protected by Reflect, just attack, attack, attack! The best phase to enter this fight is Waning Moon, to increase the strength of Ceodore?s attacks. And, since the Mysterious Girl only uses magic, there is no backlash. Ceodore should be able to win the fight before the girl casts Meteor. To The Moon Once on the moon, the party will be just Ceodore, which is exactly what we want for this solo challenge. Equip Ceodore with the Ribbon. As for armor, I think the Luminous Robe is best for now, and the Level Band to help Ceodore gain levels. The Defender is the best weapon for now, but we'll find stronger weapons soon enough. You may wish to sell off all the stuff that Ceodore cannot equip. For one, the inventory will be much easier to manage, and for two, it helps get more gil towards buying Elixirs later on. Of course, you may have already ported over quite a few Elixirs from the earlier chapters. But, hold on to the attack items, Spider's Silk, and other buffing items. Also, don't sell anything that Ceodore can equip, as you never know when a seemingly weak piece of armor will come in handy. Use any Apples or Soma Drops on Ceodore, and set off for the Subterrane. A word of caution: Spider's Silk and other spell items can no longer be bought, so don't go crazy with them. Only use Spider's Silk once per boss fight, and if you can afford not to use it, then don't. Save it for the bosses that need to get hit with it the maximum of 4 times. First Boss, Baigan Be advised that the Ribbon does not protect against Paralysis, so it is still a good idea to run from the Coeurl family. The first wave of enemies shouldn't be difficult, even for a solo character. It won't take long for Ceodore to run into Baigan, which is a forced battle. Use a Spider's Silk to slow down all three of his parts, and protect from his physical attacks with Blink. Destroy the left arm, then hit the right arm once or twice (don't destroy it). After that, attack the main body until it dies. The remaining arm will self destruct, but since it is weakened, it shouldn't do enough damage to kill Ceodore. If Baigan casts Haste, slow him down again. After the fight, Ceodore will automatically rest at the save point and be fully healed. Second Boss, Magus Sisters Now, it is possible to skip some of the Final Fantasy IV Legacy Bosses, but I am going to cover them anyway. Plus, it is beneficial to defeat the bosses so you can make use of their save points. First off, let me say that the Magus Sisters were much tougher than I expected them to be. They are very fast, and their spells hit like bricks, even during Waxing Moon! The first move should be to slow down all three of them, then Haste Ceodore. Don't waste MP casting Reflect, as the sisters attack by reflecting their own spells. As in the original game, it is best to take out the middle sister with the scythe first. Once she is gone, this battle suddenly becomes very easy. The scythe girl counters with some surprisingly hefty physical attacks, so always be ready to heal. Note: It should be common sense by now to use Spider's Silk on the boss first, Haste with Ceodore, attack and heal when needed. I won't repeat this basic strategy for every single boss. Third Boss, Dr. Lugae and Barnabas If Ceodore doesn't have the Ribbon, this fight is nearly impossible. If he does have the Ribbon, he should be able to steamroll these two. Cast Blink to protect against Barnabas (he gets two attacks in one turn) then go all out. Take out Barnabas first, as he will self destruct if you take out Lugae first. Dr. Lugae's status ailments should fail, and he will sometimes heal Ceodore. I guess the good doctor is crazy after all. The next bosses are the Eblan Royals, but they won't attack Ceodore. After he kills one, they will simply disappear without giving any EXP. Be sure to get the Light Sword and White Robe on the way down to Scarmiglione's section. I will just call him Scar for short. Scar, Fiend of Earth For Scar's section, it is best to equip the Light Sword, as it is effective against undead enemies. Also, two rooms to the left of the save point, there is a Dragon Shield AND a Protect Ring! Ceodore can equip them both, so have him do so. If Ceodore runs into a Behemoth, it might be a good idea to run. Although Behemoths can be easily beaten with Blink, it has to constantly be re-applied, and they have a good deal of HP. Anyway, I leave it up to the reader's discretion whether to fight or flight. The skeleton enemies can cast Death, but the Ribbon should block it. However, Dinozombies can still paralyze with their physical attacks. After touching the crystal, Ceodore will be attacked by four Skullnants, which can easily be curbstomped with the Light Sword. Then, he faces Scar himself, who summons 6 Revenants. Scar counter attacks with Thundaga, so cast Reflect before attacking him. After Scar is zapped into submission, he turns into his true form and attacks Ceodore from behind! But, Scar only uses physical attacks and no counters, so as long as Blink is up, this fight is easy. Cagnazzo, Fiend of Water In Cagnazzo's section, run from any White Dragons. They can cast Slow on Ceodore, reduce his HP to 1 with Maelstrom, and counter attack everything he does. The other enemies shouldn't be too tough to deal with. Then, we get to Cagnazzo, who can be considered a roadblock boss. The problem is not surviving Cagnazzo's attacks, it is actually killing him, which you will discover for yourself. Before you challenge Cagnazzo, put on equipment that raises Str, Int, and Agi. Examples are Aegis Shield, Pointed Hat, Power Armlet, and so on. Also, there should be some Blue and White Fangs available in the inventory. Go into battle during the Waning Moon phase, and have the Ice Brand equipped, since that is Cagnazzo?s weakness. I don?t know how a turtle can be so fast, but Cagnazzo will outspeed Ceodore unless he is slowed down with several Spider?s Silks. Ceodore should cast Haste, as always, and use Blink to block Cagnazzo?s attacks. Cagnazzo sometimes counters with Hold. It will usually miss, but if it hits, Ceodore will be paralyzed for a while. Fortunately, it can be Reflected. When Cagnazzo raises his water barrier, blast him with a Blue Fang for good damage. The toughest part of the battle comes when Cagnazzo is low on health. He will retreat into his shell and heal himself repeatedly for 4096 HP! Physical attacks do very little damage to Cagnazzo. The only means Ceodore has of inflicting decent damage is with a White Fang, and even that may not do enough to overcome Cagnazzo?s healing. So, that is why it is best to have equipment on that raises Int. My Ceodore was Level 60 when I squeaked past Cagnazzo. This is about the only way to beat Cagnazzo without cheating on the solo challenge, so I hope you held on to your White Fangs! Next up is the Fiend of Wind, whose name I have shortened to Barb. Barb, Fiend of Wind Once the turtle roadblock is cleared, continue on to Barb's section. I suggest running from Thunderbirds, as Ceodore will likely not be able to beat them in one hit. They counter attack by using Stop on Ceodore, then they will zap him. Even with lightning resistant equipment, Thunderbirds and Green Dragons deal high amounts of damage. Soon, Ceodore will come face to face with Barb. All Barb will do in this fight is turn into a tornado, and counter with Tornado and Ray. As long as Ceodore has an Aegis Shield or Ribbon equipped, he's got nothing to worry about. However, he will deal very little damage to Barb, so this fight will take a long time, even if in Waning Moon phase. But Barb won't do anything else, not even make a physical attack! (Either I discovered a glitch, or she is really that stupid.) Tornado can never kill you. You could put Blink on Ceodore to be on the safe side, then Berserk him with a Bacchus's Wine (bear in mind the Ribbon prevents Berserk, so if you want to do this, remove the Ribbon first). If playing the PSP Version, turn on Auto Battle to speed this up. She yields the Gungnir lance, which is effective against flying enemies. It will certainly teach those pesky Thunderbirds and Blood Bats a lesson. Even the Blood Eyes will easily be slain. Rubicante, Fiend of Fire Heading into Rubicante's section, you may notice that the enemies are giving a lot more EXP. This is good, so keep those levels coming! A lot of enemies here are from the lower section of Kain's Challenge Dungeon, and they gave Ceodore a tough time before. But, now he is a lot stronger, and can easily beat them. Before the fight with Rubicante, equip the Ice Brand and make sure fire resistant armor is equipped. (Dragon Shield and Protect Ring should have Ceodore covered.) Also, I suggest being in Waning Moon phase, like with the previous Fiends. Rubicante's Firaga spells and Glare will take a toll on Ceodore, so be ready to heal frequently. When Rubicante closes his cape, don't attack him. Not only will a lot less damage be done, but he will counter with Firaga. When low on HP, Rubicante will cast Firaga on himself to heal (interesting strategy), so hopefully you can power through that. He isn't nearly as bad as Cagnazzo was, because at least your physical damage won't be reduced. Note: Some players may think of using a Cursed Ring in conjunction with the Dragon Shield to absorb Rubicante's fire attacks. While this does indeed work, bear in mind that all of Ceodore's stats are reduced by 15, and he may not be able to keep up with Rubicante's healing at the end of the fight due to decreased strength and agility. The CPU If you want to get Leviathan and Ashura, you need to have Rydia in the party. The interdimensional elevator in Rubicante's area is the last one before the summons, so if you want them, go back and get Rydia now. Rydia can simply be left in KO. The machine enemies are fairly easy to beat and give tons of EXP, Ceodore can easily gain multiple levels before leaving. Use the Save Point and have a chat with Uncle Golbez. Then, face off with the CPU. Take out the Defense Node, then attack the CPU. The Attack Node doesn't do much damage, but its damage adds up during the fight, so don't relax your guard. All the CPU does is just cast Reflect on itself. Since it is considered to be in the back row, damage will be reduced to it. Obviously, it is best to enter this fight during Waning Moon. Leviathan and Ashura The next area resembles the Sylvan Cave, with its damaging floor. Fortunately, Ceodore has Float. Unfortunately, the regular enemies here are very aggravating. I ran from most of them. The Selene Guardians will beat the stuffing out of you, and the Dark Sages can cast Tornado. To make matters worse, you can no longer use Embrace to get healed! In After Years, if you are immune to Petrification, the attack will miss rather than restore you to full HP. And back attacks seem to happen a lot more frequently in this area. But enough of my ranting. For Leviathan and Ashura, it does not matter what order you beat them in, but you do need to beat them both in order to advance. If Rydia is with Ceodore, they will return to her as summons. If not, they will be utterly destroyed. For the first Eidolon, you simply have to beat it down. But, for the second Eidolon, Rydia must be alive so it can recognize her, otherwise the fight will continue endlessly. Leviathan should be a very straightforward fight, but Ashura is much tougher. She will repeatedly cast Curaga on herself. Slow her down and cast Reflect on her. That way, Curaga will bounce into Ceodore. Ashura will counter attack, so keep Blink on. Also, Ashura gets smart and quits casting Curaga when Reflect is active, so you can't rely on that for healing. Reflect wears off rather quickly, so be prepared to recast it multiple times. You may even have to use a Hi-Ether to restore MP if the fight drags on long enough. The Dark Knight After the Eidolons are dealt with, you will come across a Save Point and an interdimensional elevator. Go back to the Lunar Whale and get Rosa, Cecil, and Golbez. If Cecil and Golbez are not in the party, the Dark Knight will automatically whip Ceodore, giving him a Game Over. (Rosa is optional, but I like Golbez, and don?t want him to die.) Fight the Dark Knight until he reduces everyone?s HP to 1. Cecil blocks for everyone, preventing certain death. Next, you will fight the Dark Knight with just Rosa and Golbez. After a while, Ceodore joins in. During this part, KO Golbez and Rosa, and beat the crap out of the Dark Knight. Cecil will block a Dark Wave for Ceodore. In the final part of the fight, it will just be Cecil and Ceodore, with Ceodore's HP reduced to 1. Heal Ceodore to full HP and kill off Cecil. This part of the fight should be a curbstomp battle, since the Dark Knight's physical attacks do very little damage. But, occasionally he will bust out a Dark Wave (which does absurd damage) or Black Fang (which reduces Ceodore's HP to 1). Be ready to heal when this happens. After Ceodore beats down the Dark Knight like the punk that he is, he gets Excalibur. Sweet, huh? Now, return to the Lunar Whale and drop off Cecil, Rosa, and Golbez. Note: Only Cecil and Golbez are required for this part, but if Rosa and Ceodore are not with the party, Golbez will die a permanent death. Brave Little Adamant Boy Now, Ceodore can use the Interdimensional Elevator and go to the place called ???. Here, he can trade in colored Tails for cool stuff, and best of all, trade in the Adamantite for the Adamant set of equipment. It only takes 8 pieces of Adamantite to fully outfit Ceodore, but I had an extra piece, and picked up an extra set of Adamant Gloves. With the complete set, Ceodore is resistant to Fire, Ice, and Lightning, and immune to just about all statuses. Plus, the equipment gives good stat increases, has high Physical (and Magic) Evasion, and has unmatched raw defense power. Ceodore should pretty much be unbeatable, huh? Note: The description for the Adamant Armor is a bit vague. In case you are wondering what statuses it prevents, it prevents Pig, Petrify, and Poison (according to the FF Wiki). Note 2: If you want to use only the Adamantite found in Ceodore and Kain's Tales, you will have 2 pieces. That is enough to get Adamant Gloves. Since the Gloves prevent Paralyze, they should be obtained. Otherwise, it will be nearly impossible to win the final fight without them. The Depths On the first floor, there is a Namingway where one can buy Elixirs. Buy as many as you can afford. There is also a save point, a healing tile, and an interdimensional elevator. A cheap tactic that I often use is to warp back here when I need to heal and save. The majority of random encounters will be very easy for our brave little Adamant boy, Ceodore. I fought most of these battles in Waning Moon, to increase Ceodore's attack power and make things go by more quickly. Most enemies will miss Ceodore with their physical attacks. However, some enemies can still put the hurt on him, so don't underestimate them. The Adamant Gear doesn't block Tornado completely, but it should miss most of the time due to the equipment's high Magic Evasion. Dark Sages only use Tornado when they are alone, so always take them out first. When Ceodore reaches the fifth floor, he will start encountering Chaotic Knights. Run from them, as they will use both Tornado and Doom, even when in a group. Also, on the fifth floor, we meet up with the Legacy Bosses from the very first Final Fantasy. They are not required battles, but they give quite a bit of EXP. I'll just give general strategies for each: Lich: Cast Float beforehand to avoid his Earthquake. Also, cast Reflect to counter his Bio spells. Excalibur does insane damage to Lich. Marilith: Confuse should be no threat, but watch out for her Fire spell. Although it can be Reflected, she is healed by Fire, so I advise against it. Kraken: Similar to Marilith, but uses Ice spells instead. When low on HP, he will charge up a Tidal Wave, but doesn't do too much damage. Tiamat: Doesn't seem like much of a threat at first, but she can use Maelstrom, so be ready to heal from that. I beat her before she could use it, though. Ceodore was Level 76 after trashing these Legacy Bosses, just to give an idea of his level. Continue down to the ninth floor, where we can encounter the Final Fantasy II Legacy Bosses. On this floor, Ceodore might encounter Malboro Menaces, who can cast Doom. As a side note, Doom can be Reflected, but as it costs 30 MP, it's not worth it in random battles. With Excalibur, Ceodore can actually deal damage to Dust Mousses. It's best to fight the Final Fantasy II Legacy Bosses during the Waxing Moon phase, since they use powerful Black Magic. King Behemoth: He only uses physical attacks at first, but at the end of the battle he will cast Meteor. Make sure Ceodore is in full HP, or you might get lucky and have Meteor miss. Iron Giant: He only uses physical attacks and Crush, but the Adamant Helm blocks Crush. The Iron Giant is also much slower than the other bosses, so it is easier to keep pace with his attacks. Although the Iron Giant has Meteor, he only uses it as a counter to magic attacks, and since we aren't attacking with magic, we will never see it. Astaroth: She uses mostly high level spells, including Flare. They can all be Reflected. Beelzebub: Definitely the toughest of the four. He is very fast and has the level 3 elemental spells, as well as Flare and Tornado. He is also a wily opponent, as he casts Blink and Haste on himself. Keep Reflect on at all times, and just keep attacking. Unlike the original Final Fantasy II, Beelzebub does not absorb any element. After these bosses, Ceodore was Level 82. If he runs into any Wicked Masks or Protophases, run from them. Also, Crystal Dragons should be fled from. They are very hard to beat with a solo character. On the 12th floor, we can fight the Final Fantasy III Legacy Bosses. I suggest fighting the Two Headed Dragon first, as it drops the Holy Lance. The Holy Lance can be used as an item to cast.....Holy! It is very useful for Ceodore. Unlike the first two sets of Legacy Bosses, these ones are not optional. They have to be defeated for the teleporter to the next floor to work. Two Headed Dragon: It alternates between using a physical attack and a level 3 spell. Once it gets low on HP, it just uses two physical attacks in a row. Echidna: With Reflect, this battle should be curbstomp. However, Reflect doesn't block Quake, so cast Float before the fight. Cerberus: Yet another curbstomp battle, thanks to Reflect. It will slaughter itself with its tri-elemental attack (though sometimes it throws a physical attack in there too). Ahriman: This guy is simply impossible to beat with Ceodore alone. He always goes first, and casts Doom, which always hits. So, go back to the Lunar Whale, get your party, and beat this guy. Trust me, I tried very hard to win with only Ceodore. I even got him up to Level 99, and still couldn't do it. But after this fight, the solo challenge will resume. If anyone has somehow managed to solo this fight, though, let me know. Now, the Final Fantasy V Legacy Bosses are up next. Shinryu can be beaten with solo Ceodore, but I gave him his own section at the end of the guide. I haven't been able to beat Omega yet, so he will be ignored. Fortunately, Gilgamesh and Atomos are easy. Gilgamesh can be skipped, but Atomos must be defeated. Gilgamesh: He has a lot of tricks up his sleeve, but most of them should be useless against the Adamant Gear. When he gets low on health, he casts Haste, Protect, and Shell, then starts using Jump. Gilgamesh will also heal himself, but Ceodore should be able to overcome that by repeatedly attacking. Atomos: Atomos does nothing but cast Meteor. But, it will usually miss, and even if it does hit, it doesn't do too much damage. Once you have dealt with Atomos and his Meteor spamming ways, get ready to face the Final Fantasy VI Legacy Bosses. Ultros: Cast Float to avoid his Earthquake. The Tentacle attack does little damage, but in the second part of the fight, Ultros uses level 3 attack spells. Ultros is healed by all elements, so don't Reflect them. For this reason, attack with a non elemental weapon. Phantom Train: He always gets a back attack on Ceodore, plus he may cast Doom as his first move. If he does this, reset until the train uses only a physical attack instead. The treacherous train may also cast Doom later on, so always have Reflect on to protect yourself. Furthermore, Reflect will protect against its Holy spells, which it is weak to. Its Wheel attack does the most damage, but Blink will block it, since it is a physical attack. The Phantom Train sometimes counters with Wheel, so don't go crazy attacking it. For this fight, Ceodore should have the Holy Lance. It may take you a few tries to get past this cheating choo-choo. You will wish that you had Sabin around to suplex it. Unlike in Final Fantasy VI, you can't kill it just by using a Phoenix Down or Elixir (believe me, I tried!). Deathgaze: Deathgaze is encountered randomly on the 16th floor. He will always cast Death, but the Adamant Helm blocks it. Deathgaze also casts level 3 spells and counters with physical attacks. He runs away after a few turns, but his HP is not healed, so he can be worn down over several encounters. The Holy Lance is the best weapon against Deathgaze. His physical attacks are surprisingly powerful, so don't be surprised if healing is needed. The only reward for beating Deathgaze is to teach Dualcast to one of the Mysidian mages. Ultima Weapon: This guy is as tough as they come, but he can be beat. Be sure to slow him down the maximum of four times, and cast Haste on Ceodore. Reflect can be used against Flare, and Float allows Ceodore to laugh at Quake. The Ultima Weapon also has a very strong physical attack. It may be wise to use a Lunar Curtain. Although the Reflect from it will wear off over time, its physical nullification effect lasts for the entire fight. Now this covers defense, but as far as offense, this fight will take a good while. Ceodore has no option but to keep whaling away at it. Make sure that several Elixirs are in inventory for this marathon battle. In the second part of the fight, Ultima casts Haste, Protect, and Shell on himself and prepares to cast Meteor. If you cast Reflect on Ultima, the spells will bounce into Ceodore instead, but he will still ready Meteor. Meteor will hit like a truck from outer space, so use an Elixir, and slow Ultima down again if he Hasted himself. Then, Ultima will start using Tornado and Laser. Fortunately, both can be Reflected. Also, as Ultima loses HP, Laser does less and less damage. Eventually, Ultima will fall, and Ceodore gets the Ultima Weapon! Now, Ceodore is ready to challenge the Creator. Vs. Bahamut On the 25th floor, there is a save point and interdimensional elevator right before Bahamut. Go back to the Lunar Whale and get Rydia. At the start of the battle, the Mysterious Girl will cast Meteor, most likely killing off Rydia. But Ceodore should survive. Only Bahamut can be hurt during this battle, but if Ceodore casts Reflect, the girl's spells will bounce into Bahamut. This won't affect Quake, though, so make sure Float is active. This fight should be able to be won before Bahamut uses Megaflare. Once Bahamut returns to Rydia, deposit her back on the Lunar Whale, and get ready for the final challenge. Vs. The Creator While the Creator certainly isn't as difficult as the Ultima Weapon or Phantom Train, he is by no means a pushover. The first part of the battle is easy, his Drain and Osmose should be nothing. The second part of the battle is also easy, as all he does is counter with Binding Glare, which will have no effect (provided that Adamant Gloves are equipped). The third part of the battle is where things can go south. The Creator will cast Holy and Meteor repeatedly. Put Reflect up to at least protect against Holy, and heal between attacks. In the fourth part of the battle, there will be a scene in which the Crystals are restored. Use one of the Crystals to be able to hurt the Creator. Slow him down to the maximum of four times, then cast Haste. When the Creator uses Black Hole, it will dispel your Haste, but not his Slow status. His attacks can deal a ton of damage, even with Adamant Armor on. Fortunately, he will be slow enough that Ceodore can use an Elixir between attacks, and then get in a few hits. It is almost comical when the Creator tries to cast Toad, Mini, or Pig. After this fight, all that remains is to escape. Reverse your formation, since the Creator repeatedly attacks from behind. But, he will never do more than 1 damage. Afterwards, Ceodore can pat himself on the back! He made his family and Captain Biggs proud. Final Stats for Ceodore Name: Ceodore Level: 99 Job: Red Wings Max HP: 6364 Max MP: 602 Strength: 99 (72 base, +27 with equipment) Agility: 81 (51 base, +30 with equipment) Stamina: 88 (58 base, +30 with equipment) Intelligence: 49 (29 base, +20 with equipment) Spirit: 83 (63 base, +20 with equipment) Attack: 18 x 228 Precision: 99% Defense: 16 x 154 Evasion: 90% Magic Defense: 6 x 55 Magic Evasion: 63% Equipment: Ultima Weapon Adamant Shield Adamant Helm Adamant Armor Adamant Gloves Last Thoughts Ceodore certainly has his limitations, but he did quite well in this solo challenge. Having Haste, Blink, and Reflect is a blessing. Story wise, he is a wimp, but gameplay wise, he is not a wimp. The roadblock battles for Ceodore are the 2 Belphegors in the first tale, Cagnazzo, and Ahriman. I'm sure that it is also possible to do a solo challenge with many other characters, but I'm not going to do that right now. I might try to beat Omega with Ceodore solo, but I'm not gonna bust my head against the wall. However, I did manage to beat Shinryu (see below): Ceodore vs. Shinryu This fight requires the use of a Cursed Ring (a rare drop). It is also important to have the Ultima Weapon for two reasons. One, it boosts Ceodore's agility, and two, it is non-elemental, so Shinryu doesn't resist the damage. So, I simply replaced the Adamant Gloves with the Cursed Ring, and went at it. I fought in Waning Moon phase, to increase Ceodore's attack and most importantly, reduce the damage taken from Shinryu's Tidal Wave, his opening move. After Tidal Wave, Shinryu always casts Doom, so put up Reflect right after Tidal Wave. Shinryu then casts Protect and Shell on himself, then goes through various abilities, then cycles back to Tidal Wave and Doom. Before attacking Shinryu directly, slow him down with 4 Spider's Silks, and cast Haste on Ceodore. Blink helps too. Always keep Ceodore's HP at full with an Elixir, because you never know when Shinryu will put out another Tidal Wave. Also, when Shinryu dies, he casts Meteor. The Cursed Ring is necessary because if Shinryu uses Thunderbolt in the early parts of the battle, it will always do 9999 damage. But with the Cursed Ring, the damage gets absorbed instead. Shinryu is a boss that can be beaten with conventional tactics, as long as his attacks can be survived. The Ragnarok obtained from beating him is a ripoff, as it is actually less powerful than the Ultima Weapon. But, the real reward is the satisfaction of beating Shinryu with Ceodore. Note: Shinryu is also known as Lord Dragon or Nova Dragon, but he is called Shinryu in the game he is from, Final Fantasy V. Contact Information If you have any questions about this guide, or any suggestions on how to improve it, then you may email me at this address: email@example.com I request that you put "Ceodore Solo Guide" in the subject line, or else I will likely ignore it. Credits Square Enix for making Final Fantasy IV and its sequel GameFAQs for accepting this guide Storm Hunter for his Solo Cecil guide for the original Final Fantasy IV. It is what inspired me to do this challenge for Ceodore. The Final Fantasy Wiki, for more specific information on the Adamant Armor. I thank anyone who has taken the time to read this guide.