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by bover_87

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FAQ/Walkthrough by bover_87

Version: 1.4 | Updated: 06/12/16

Final Fantasy IX

Version History

VersionDateNotes
1.406/12/2016
1.3302/22/2016
  • Improved Pinnacle Rocks table for better viewing on smaller screens
  • Minor typo corrections
1.3202/21/2016
  • Fixed mislabeled gate in Lindblum on Disc 1
  • Fixed typo in Desert Palace's directions
  • Added note regarding the non-PSX versions
1.3101/15/2016
  • Fixed a mistake in Lindblum's directions
  • Occasional minor corrections and additions
1.309/29/2015
  • Added missing Phoenix Down in Alexandria Castle on Disc 1
  • Added missing Gil to Treno header table
  • Added small note about Treno Thug upgrading his card deck
  • Correction regarding Ragtimer on Disc 2
  • Minor changes to some boss data tables
1.209/13/2015
1.107/19/2015
  • Corrected a mix-up with two jewel types/locations in Disc 3 Alexandria
  • Added information about using Night to Earth Guardian strategy
  • Occasional minor corrections and clarifications
1.0106/24/2015
1.006/14/2015Initial Release

Legal Stuff

This guide may be not be reproduced under any circumstances except for personal, private use. It may not be placed on any web site or otherwise distributed publicly without advance written permission. Use of this guide on any other web site or as a part of any public display is strictly prohibited, and a violation of copyright.

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All trademarks and copyrights belong to their respective owners.

Introduction

Final Fantasy IX is, as the name would have you believe, Square's ninth installment in the famous Final Fantasy series. Unlike the other PSX Final Fantasy titles, IX uses a number of throwbacks to the NES and SNES games (for instance, the battle system is heavily based on FFVI's, while the character "job" system resembles FFIV), as well as a more traditional medieval setting rather than a modern or post-modern one, and various references to all the Final Fantasy games made up until then.

On the other hand, FFIX brings plenty new to the table. The story and playable characters are all completely new, as is the setting. The game's excellent story, character development, and gameplay make it a contender for one of the best games in a series that already contains a number of classics.

Note that this guide is written with the original NTSC PSX version in mind. If you're playing a different version (that is, the iOS or PC versions), you may see some minor differences.

World/Field Map Controls

ButtonWhat it Does
CircleCancel button; hold with D-Pad to run
XOK button, talk, examine, interact, open chests
SquareChallenge NPC in Tetra Master; on World Map, summon Moguo to Save and/or Tent
TriangleOpen menu
D-PadMove around; if a choice is offered, use to select an option
SelectDisplays your location
StartPauses the game, stopping all timers
L1/R1On World Map, changes camera angle
L2/R2On World Map, changes camera angle

In-Battle Controls

ButtonWhat it Does
CircleCancel button
XOK button
SquareHold down to hide menu and HP/MP display
TriangleSwitch to another character with full ATB gauge
D-PadSelect option in menu
SelectToggle description of menu item
StartPauses the game, stopping all timers and ATB gauges
L1/R1Switch between single-target (ST) and multi-target (MT) (does not work with all skills)
L2+R2Hold down both to flee battle

General Strategy

  • Early- to mid-game, your focus should be on getting good equipment and teaching your characters their Abilities. Leveling is not particularly helpful until very late, when you'll have the ideal equipment for raising stats. If you master an ability, change out that piece of equipment for something better, preferably one that teaches another ability.
  • Watch out for missable items! FFIX has a lot of them, very often because of changing shop inventories. The walkthrough will tell you what needs to picked up when.
  • Early on, watch your MP. In some cases, it may be better to have your mage characters attack physically instead of casting spells.
  • Remember that your mages need good spells to be effective, so teaching Action Abilities is especially important to them. For your fighter-type characters, Support Abilities tend to take precedence over their skillsets.
  • Quina learns skills from enemies, so be sure to keep up with skills. None are missable, but some will become unavailable for long periods if you miss them.
  • Once you're able to select your party, in most cases you'll want a reasonably balanced party, both in terms of physical/magical prowess and offense/defense. There are exceptions, which are covered in the walkthrough.
  • In most parts of the game, you won't need to worry too much about status defense against random encounters. Early on, status attacks are very rare, while in most later areas only one or two defendable statuses are used.
  • Later on, you'll often find that there are no more abilities available in a given equipment slot for a given character. In these cases, either equip to boost stats (recommended), or just equip the strongest available piece.
  • Generally, the least important pieces of equipment on a character in terms of equipment strength are the arm slot and weapons for mages, so feel free to make sacrifices here (to defend elements, learn abilities, etc.) to improve your setup elsewhere.
  • Bosses in Final Fantasy IX tend to be rather strong, but they frequently have crippling status weaknesses. Be sure to take advantage of them (the walkthrough will list status vulnerabilities for bosses).
  • In most cases, Trances in FFIX aren't all that useful strategically (contrast to their equivalents in games like VII, VIII, and X). It tends to take a long time to build up your meter, especially early in the game. That being said, a Trance can greatly augment your power, so use it wisely once you get it. If you fill your Trance gauge and the battle ends before finishing the Trance, remember it resets to zero.
  • Most normal encounters have very few status protections, so feel free to throw around status attacks if you're having problems.
  • On that note, using Zidane's Sargatanas weapon with Soul Blade late-game is horribly broken. It inflicts Petrify with 100% accuracy (never fails barring immunity), instantly defeating nearly every normal enemy in the game. Note that you don't receive Exp, Gil, or Drops this way though (AP will still be awarded).

Walkthrough - Disc 1

Please insert Disc 1

This section will contain some spoilers. Many spoilers are covered in spoiler tags (like here--select the text to reveal it), however, due to the nature of the guide it's impossible to completely avoid spoilers, especially well after they happen, so read ahead of where you are in the game at your own risk.

For an abbreviated version of the walkthrough that only details things you can miss permanently, click here.

If you encounter any broken links/images/etc., please contact me as described here.

Note that tips for defeating normal enemies will be contained in the Enemy List, while bosses and special fixed encounters will be listed as they are encountered in the walkthrough.

Kidnap Mission

Planning the Heist

Items47 Gil, Potion
EnemiesMasked Man (boss)

When you start the game, enjoy the opening FMV.

Missable Item Alert #1

These alerts will appear throughout the guide, to inform you of missable items, skills, Key Items, etc. Pay careful attention to these when you see them. FFIX has a huge number of missables, including many that are not obvious until much later in the game.

What? We haven't even started playing yet and there are missable items already? Not quite, but there are a few related topics we need to cover right off the bat, so bear with me a minute.

First, you need to decide whether you're going for the game's ultimate Knight Sword, Excalibur II. If this is your first time playing, I advise ignoring it; it's very difficult to acquire, as you must get to almost the end of the final dungeon in less than 12 hours' game time. If you do want to get it, remember to try to shave off time whenever you can. Atomos199's Excalibur II Perfect Game Guide on GameFAQs gives detailed instructions on how to get the sword and still preserve a perfect game. If you're not going for a perfect game but just want the sword, you can use this walkthrough pretty well, just remember to try to shave time off wherever you can (skipping FMVs and sidequests, fast-scrolling through dialog, ignoring non-missable treasures that you don't need, etc.) Again, if this is your first time playing FFIX, don't try for the Sword; it takes a great deal of background knowledge, and you'll be able to enjoy the game's excellent story, sidequests, and gameplay by not chasing the highest fruit on the tree.

Second, on a similar note, if you intend to max stats, you'll need to play a very specific way from the get-go. Once again, if it's your first time don't bother trying for perfect stats; otherwise, if you're very patient and want to try, the PG Guide will allow you to do it all (except follow the story, heh) in one file. You can also find an overview of the topic of stat boosting here.

Finally, there's the question of treasure collection, and this starts from the second you gain control of your character. I'm not referring to rarities per se, but rather to regular treasures in areas that cannot be acquired past a certain point. FFIX tracks treasure collection, and missing too many items will cause you to miss out on a Key Item (the Rank S Medal) later in the game. If you're just doing a normal playthrough, this is fairly easy: just pick up items as they're indicated in the walkthrough. If you're going for the ultimate Knight Sword, the PG Guide will tell you what needs to be collected on arrival and what can wait for the endgame; for space and clarity reasons, I'm not going to go into detail about that in this guide.

After the scene, you'll be in control of a humanoid with a tail. Don't light the candle right away; we have some items to collect first. Go into the closet in the back of the room, and examine the left wall (where you see a field icon) for 47 Gil, and the right wall for a Potion. Once you have both, examine the table in the middle of the room for a scene. You'll be asked to name your character (Default: Zidane). This guide assumes you used the default names for each character, like most FFIX guides. The scene continues, after which there'll be a battle!

Boss: Masked Man

Masked Man

HP188MP223Level1
Exp0AP0Gil0
StealCommonPotionDropAlwaysNothing
UncommonWristCommonNothing
Semi-RareMage MasherUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeHumanCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
None
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
None

Your first battle came awfully fast! Fortunately, Masked Man is a pushover, so let's get down to business. Masked Man has three different moves: "Gwahaha" and "Get some!" for crap damage, and "Ow," causing him to fall over and miss his turn.

You'll notice every one of your four characters has the Steal command. The game is quietly nudging you to Steal, if you didn't notice. Mage Masher is especially nice (an improvement over Zidane's current weapon in every way), and Potion and Wrist are decent to get as well. So Steal all the items (keep in mind that FFIX does not prevent Steals after the first Item is stolen; it merely removes the stolen item from the list of available items) and then knock the stuffing out of Masked Man. If Cinna dies, don't bother reviving him; he's clearly the zero of the bunch (his damage is nothing short of pathetic) and not worth a Phoenix Down in any event.

Upon falling, the Masked Man drops...absolutely nothing. Bleh.

After battle, there'll be more scenes. When asked, if you feel bored you can tell them you're kidnapping Queen Brahne 50 times for a minor line of dialog, or just tell them you're kidnapping Garnet to continue. Watch the scenes.

Alexandria

ItemsZombie [Card], Potion, Potion, Lizard Man [Card], Sahagin [Card], Potion, Fang [Card], 9 Gil, Potion, 33 Gil, Goblin [Card], Potion, Flan [Card], 27 Gil, 38 Gil, Ether, Remedy, Phoenix Pinion, Eye Drops, 3 Gil, Potion, Tent, Ironite [Card], Goblin [Card], Fang [Card], Bomb [Card], Skeleton [Card], Goblin [Card], Fang [Card], 29 Gil, 92 Gil, 63 Gil

Alexandria Castle at night.After the spectacles, you'll be in control of a child-like character. If you stole a Wrist from Masked Man, feel free to equip him with it. Your current destination is the ticket booth in the screen to the north, but as you can see above we have treasure to collect, and while none of it is great, we need to pick up items to complete our file. You begin in "Alexandria/Main Street;" what follows is information on how to acquire all the goods.

First, run south to find yourself in a small entrance plaza. Examine the partially-offscreen object in the southwest corner of the area to find a Zombie Card. Cards are used for Tetra Master, a fun but mostly pointless card game; you can find more info about it here. Continuing on, behind the statue in the center of the plaza is a Potion. Run straight backward from the statue; obscured from view is a Lizard Man Card. Run west; enter the doorstep just to the north of where you entered to find a Sahagin Card. Return to the previous screen the way you came.

(Note: You can't leave Alexandria right now, so don't bother trying.)

As you enter, you'll see a rooftop immediately to your left. Run under it and examine the field icon to receive a Potion. Enter the house across the street, and examine the bed for 9 Gil and the table for a Potion. Meanwhile, the dresser on the top floor conceals a Fang Card. When you have both treasures, go back outside. Run north for a short scene, after which you should look for a group of three barrels of fruit; the southern one hides another Potion. When you have everything, move on to the next area.

After the scene, run towards the camera. In the grass on the right side you'll find 33 Gil, and on the left side a Goblin Card. Enter the building here, which turns out to be a bar. Examine the lower-right corner for a Potion, the barrel on the left hand side nearest the camera for a Flan Card, and the archway on the left-hand wall for 27 Gil. Talk to the patrons if you want, then leave and run to the next screen to the left.

This screen has no items, but there is an Item Shop in the door to the right. I don't recommend spending your money at the moment, but feel free to check it out. Examine the junk on the table nearest the camera to find 38 Gil (funny how the shopkeeper does not care whatsoever that you're stealing his money). When done, exit north.

If you followed everything correctly, you're now in a screen called "Alexandria/Square." To the east of where you enter are a Synthesis Shop and Weapon Shop, but both are closed at the moment. Go inside the southern-most of the two doors anyway--examine the workbench in the lower-left corner to find an Ether. Run through the doorway to the north (not the exit) and examine near the counter (very close to where you came in here) to find a Remedy. Congratulations, you've found probably the only two worthwhile items here! Return to the square when you're finished. You'll see a path leading north, but you can't access it. Instead, look to the west of the path for a wagon--examine it for a Phoenix Pinion, which is nothing special now but will come in handy much later. Also talk to Hippaul here to learn he's hidden three cards somewhere in town. In addition, you can do the Jump-Rope Mini-Game here. Doing it now will result in a special letter coming available, but you can do it later with no real penalty. It also has the Genji and Alexandria Cards for rewards, which can help a lot if you intend to play a lot of cards. It's rather frustrating though, so I leave the choice up to you. Ignore the ticket booth for now; when you're done, exit to the southwest.

The plaza where Mittens can be found.There's nothing in this screen, so just run to the next one. You'll find yourself on a street leading towards a church. Keep an eye on the door next to the church--when you see a little girl run out, run inside and grab the Eye Drops (in the corner near the table downstairs) and 3 Gil (by the bed upstairs), then return to the street. Ignore the church for the moment and run up the plank near the dock. Talk to the boy, and tell him you'll find Mittens (his kitten) for him. Enter the church, and examine the walls on either side to find a Potion and a Tent. Climb the ladder and pull the rope to receive an Ironite Card, Goblin Card, and Fang Card. When you're done, return to the entrance plaza (shown to the left) and "speak" to the kitten, then return to the area near the church and speak to Tom to receive a Bomb Card.

Now, go to the central plaza and speak to the ticket booth. Chew the fat if you want for some background information, then show your ticket for a scene. You'll receive a Goblin Card, Fang Card, and Skeleton Card. Head back towards the church, and on your way you'll see another scene. When you're sure you're ready to continue, tell the kid you'll be his slave. Say it's all clear, then quickly press X when you see a field icon pop up. He'll give you a Tetra Master tutorial, then you can play him if you want. Alleyway Jack doesn't have any real good cards, but he is a half-decent player, so try to practice a bit if you intend to play a lot. (If you weren't fast enough in the street, he'll just run away with some of your Gil.)

Return to the screen with the church. Follow Puck inside, then try to climb the ladder for a scene. The Moogle (named Kupo) will explain how Save Moogles work; they are your save points in this game. Ignore that rat-kid for a moment and speak to the Moogle after the scene. Select "Mognet" to learn about delivering letters, which is a useful sidequest throughout the game. Agree to do it and Kupo will give you a letter to deliver to Monty. Learn more here.

Missable Item Alert #2

Anytime you run across a Moogle, be sure to check the Mognet option until the Moogle says nothing new (they'll either say "I want mail!" or something similar, or just list off previous letters they've received). This way, you can ensure you receive and deliver all letters. Many letters (and some Moogles) can only be found during a specific period of time.

Save your game (don't bother burning a Tent right now), then follow the kid upwards. On the rooftops, cross the first two planks, then head a bit south and examine the bird's nest for 29 Gil. As you approach the third plank you'll be prompted to name your character (Default: Vivi). Continue northward, and from the ruined house, run further north, then west. Look for another bird's nest with 92 Gil (don't spend it all in one place, now). Return to the ruin and go south this time. Follow the path to yet another bird's nest, this one with 63 Gil. Now, to continue, from the ruined house go to the northeast, then follow the path east and north. When you reach Puck, there'll be a scene.

During the Play

ItemsEther or Elixir or Silk Shirt or Moonstone*, Phoenix Down, Elixir*, Phoenix Down, Phoenix Pinion
EnemiesKing Leo (boss), Benero (boss), Zenero (boss), Steiner (boss), Steiner (boss), Haagen (boss), Weimar (boss), Steiner (boss)

*Only if associated mini-game is completed with best result; otherwise, you'll receive a lesser item instead.

Watch the scenes.

Boss: King Leo, Benero, Zenero

King Leo and his lackeys.

King Leo's Data
HP186MP373Level1
Exp0AP0Gil0
StealCommonNothingDropAlwaysNothing
UncommonNothingCommonNothing
Semi-RareNothingUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeHumanCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
None
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
None
Benero's Data
HP28MP149Level1
Exp0AP0Gil0
StealCommonNothingDropAlwaysNothing
UncommonNothingCommonNothing
Semi-RareNothingUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeHumanCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
None
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
None
Zenero's Data
HP32MP149Level1
Exp0AP0Gil0
StealCommonNothingDropAlwaysNothing
UncommonNothingCommonNothing
Semi-RareNothingUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeHumanCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
None
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
None

As you should be able to tell, this is a staged fight. The only wrinkle with this battle is that the thieves no longer have Steal, but instead have SFX. SFX is to amuse a crowd on-stage, meaning it does no damage. (Final Fantasy veterans might notice that the names and animations of the spells are based upon ultimate magic from previous games.) Otherwise, there's not much to say. No one has anything to Steal, and none of the opponents are all that strong. Use SFX moves if you want to see them, but otherwise don't bother reviving Cinna if he falls and just defeat all the enemies with physicals to end battle (once again, no drops).

After battle, a sword fighting mini-game will take place; your performance will affect your reward. For more information, click here.

Missable Item Alert #3

Be sure to impress 100 nobles here. You'll win a Moonstone in addition to 10,000 Gil later. Moonstones are strictly limited in quantity, and the Gil never hurt anyone either. I'll let you know when it's time to collect your prize.

After the scene, you'll be in control of Zidane. Equip the Mage Masher if you stole it earlier, then run up the stairs for a bunch of scenes. You'll be prompted to name ol' Rusty as well (Default: Steiner).

After the scene, return to Queen Brahne and speak to her to receive your prize from the sword fight. If you impressed 100 nobles, you'll receive a Moonstone; otherwise, you'll get a lesser prize.

Missable Item Alert #4

Be sure to collect your reward (Moonstone!) from Queen Brahne. This is your only chance to do so, and especially if you impressed 100 nobles you don't want that to go to waste.

Return to the guardhouse (the one Zidane and Blank just came out of). Speak to the Moogle and pick Mognet to read a letter if you jump-roped, and be sure to save your game. Also search the guardhouse to locate a Phoenix Down. Now, it's time to look for the lost Knights of Pluto; for more information, click here. When you're done, speak to Breireicht (one of the Knights you need to find) in the spiral staircase of the tower (if you found all the Knights, speak to him twice to receive an Elixir), then ascend the rest of the way to proceed with the game.

After the scene, you're back to Zidane. Equip the Mage Masher if you didn't already (and assuming you bothered to grab it), then follow Garnet. In the next room, talk to Ruby, then run down the stairs for yet another scene. Afterwards, examine the wheel on the engine; turn it left and right to make chests with Phoenix Down and Phoenix Pinion, respectively, appear. Once you have both, exit left for a scene, and the showdown everyone's been waiting for!

Boss: Steiner

Garnet's Knight in Rusting Armor.

HP169MP523Level1
Exp0AP0Gil0
StealCommonLeather HatDropAlwaysNothing
UncommonSilk ShirtCommonNothing
Semi-RareNothingUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeHumanCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
None
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
None

Frankly, the most interesting part about this fight is that if you named Steiner something other than "Steiner," his name will be whatever you put. So, you could very well be fighting Assclown. Ahem...

Speaking of Assclown, that's exactly what Steiner is. He only has a basic physical attack that can only hit one at a time and is weaker than Masked Man and King Leo from before. As a matter of fact, he can't even OHKO Cinna, the ultimate fall guy. So go ahead and Steal that Leather Hat and Silk Shirt, then just whack Rusty a few times until the battle ends.

Watch the scenes.

Battle: Steiner, Haagen, Weimar

Steiner and his lackeys.

Steiner's Data
HP169MP523Level1
Exp0AP0Gil0
StealCommonNothingDropAlwaysNothing
UncommonNothingCommonNothing
Semi-RareNothingUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeHumanCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
None
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
None
Haagen's Data
HP34MP673Level1
Exp0AP0Gil0
StealCommonNothingDropAlwaysNothing
UncommonNothingCommonNothing
Semi-RareNothingUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeHumanCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
None
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
None
Weimar's Data
HP39MP721Level1
Exp0AP0Gil0
StealCommonNothingDropAlwaysNothing
UncommonNothingCommonNothing
Semi-RareNothingUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeHumanCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
None
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
None

Sir Rustalot is back for more punishment, and this time he brought help. Unfortunately for him, he brought utterly incompetent help. Seeing as how you're on stage again, no Stealing for you, so just kick their asses and move on. (If you want some laughs, attack Haagen or Weimar with Garnet or Vivi's physical.) Note that Vivi's Fire and Garnet's Cure can both be MT'd by pressing L1 or R1 when it comes time to target the spell. Either way, just defeat them easily and move on with life.

TIme for more scenes, then...

Boss: Steiner, Bomb

Steiner again.

Not much to say, the Bomb is untargetable and never attacks, while attacking or not has absolutely no effect on this scripted battle. So do whatever and the battle will end after three turns.

Watch the ensuing scenes.

Escaping the Mist

Crash Site

ItemsPhoenix Down, Eye Drops, Bronze Gloves, Wrist, Ether, 116 Gil, Ether, Rubber Helm, Leather Hat, Potion, Ether
EnemiesPrison Cage (boss), Prison Cage (boss), Fang, Goblin, Dendrobium, Baku (boss)

Upon landing, you'll see some scenes, followed by an introduction to the Active Time Event (ATE) system, used extensively in FFIX to show scenes away from the player character. Watch the ATE, then talk to the Moogle Mosco (no letters). North of the boxes near Mosco is a Phoenix Down which you'll want to take. You can't enter the Prima Vista at the moment, so go south instead (if you get any random encounters, Zidane should be able to handle them with his dagger, just be sure to keep yourself healed). Equip Zidane with the Moonstone if you have it, it'll teach Beast Killer, a great ability early on. Follow the path for a scene and a battle!

Boss: Prison Cage

Prison Cage.

HP513MP1,083Level2
Exp0AP0Gil0
StealCommonNothingDropAlwaysNothing
UncommonNothingCommonNothing
Semi-RareNothingUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeNoneCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
Fire
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
None

Prison Cage marks the introduction of Trance, FFIX's version of a Limit Break. Prison Cage will often Absorb from Garnet during its turns, and remember that if she dies it's Game Over, so have Steiner use a Potion on Garnet if it Absorbs twice. It also has a weak physical against Zidane and Steiner, which you can more or less ignore. Don't bother Stealing, Prison Cage has absolutely nothing. Just use Free Energy on it until your Trance ends or until it dies. Tidal Flame will OHKO Garnet, so don't use it if you have it. Oh, and if you were thinking of saving the Trance for a later battle...you can't. Trance never carries to the next battle, so if you get a Trance just blast your opposition with it while you can.

After the battle, there'll be a scene, and time for some more fun!

Boss: Prison Cage (Second Battle)

Prison Cage...again! Steal that Leather Wrist!

HP533MP1,186Level2
Exp0AP3Gil436
StealCommonBroadswordDropAlwaysEye Drops
UncommonLeather WristCommonPhoenix Down
Semi-RareNothingUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeNoneCard
Drop
Goblin
Elemental
Weaknesses
Fire
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
None

This battle proceeds similarly to the previous battle, with three major differences. First, unlike Garnet, Vivi will fight back, casting Fire on Prison Cage for around 80 damage every time he gets a turn. Second, Zidane no longer will have a Trance. Finally, the thing has some stuff to Steal. The Leather Wrist is especially useful, and the Broadsword isn't too bad either. So keep Vivi healed, Steal its goods, then finish this monstrosity with your physicals.

This is also your first experience with post-battle administravia (unless you got into random encounters before meeting the first Prison Cage). In this case, Prison Cage drops no Exp, 3 AP, and 436 Gil in addition to Eye Drops always and sometimes a Phoenix Down and/or Goblin Card. For more information about this, click here.

After the battle, you'll see more scenes, then you'll be back inside the wrecked theatre ship. Open the chest near Baku for some Bronze Gloves, then take the stairs down. Watch the ATE's, then open the chest left of the stairs for a Wrist. Talk to Blank if you want, then go into Vivi's room. Get the Ether from the chest and 116 Gil from the bunk bed, then talk to Vivi. Leave the room, then after the scene run past Blank to the next room. Grab the Ether from the chest to the south, then go downstairs. Here, find a Rubber Helm in the back part of the closet (or rather, what once was the closet), then go to the room to the south and pick up a Leather Hat from the chest east of where you came in here. Now, go back to the previous room and go east this time to find Baku. Take the Potion from the chest when he finishes talking. Make sure you're properly equipped (Mage Masher is especially important here), then speak to Baku and agree to fight!

Boss: Baku

Baku.

HP202MP1,285Level2
Exp0AP0Gil0
StealCommonHi-PotionDropAlwaysNothing
UncommonIron SwordCommonNothing
Semi-RareNothingUncommonNothing
RareNothingRareNothing
TypeHumanCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
Fire
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
Slow

The furry giant sure does love to fight, doesn't he? It'll just be Zidane solo, but you shouldn't have too much trouble.

Baku's attacks average about 30 damage per hit, though he will sometimes trip and lose his turn. The battle strategy is once again extremely simple: Steal the Iron Sword (Steiner will really want it), then just attack physically until Baku's HP hits zero. If you get low on HP (under 60 or so), use a Potion. Try to avoid a Game Over, remember you last save was quite a few major battles ago.

After the battle, go talk to Steiner, then grab the Ether chest in Steiner's closet and speak to Vivi. There'll be a scene explaining Swd Mag, then it's time to head outside. Give Vivi the Leather Wrist and Silk Shirt if you have them, they will give him his basic-level spells in the three main elements. Giving Steiner the Bronze Gloves and equipping Zidane and Steiner with Support Abilities isn't a half-bad idea either (Vivi has none available at the moment).

Outside the ship, Cinna runs a basic Item Shop, so stock up if you're low on Potions. Check Mognet, then save your progress and exit to the south.

Evil Forest

ItemsPhoenix Down, Continental Map [Key Item]
EnemiesFang, Goblin, Dendrobium, Plant Brain (boss), Plant Spider

From the ship, simply follow the linear path through the forest until you reach the screen where you fought the Prison Cages. There'll be a prompt for an ATE; view it for some FF nostalgia. After that, continue on until you find a Moogle, Monty. There's a spring here; use it to refill HP/MP, then save. Deliver your letter to Monty, then check Mognet again to see another letter. You can grind on baddies here if you really feel like it (and try to Steal a Tent or two from Dendrobium), but once you're ready, equip as many Silk Shirts as you have and continue onward. Pass through the next screen, then it's boss time!

Boss: Plant Brain

Plant Brain.

HP916MP1,431Level7
Exp0AP5Gil468
StealCommonEye DropsDropAlwaysPhoenix Down
UncommonIron HelmCommonPotion
Semi-RareNothingUncommonPotion
RareNothingRarePotion
TypeNoneCard
Drop
None
Elemental
Weaknesses
Fire
Elemental
Resistances
None
Status
Vulnerabilities
Berserk, Darkness, Silence, Sleep, Slow

The first legitimate boss of the game, this is one weird plant-thing. So what does Plant Brain do, exactly?

For the most part, it just spams you with Thunder spells, and these are the real threat here. Its ST physicals do moderate damage, and Pollen does damage with a chance of sticking your characters with Darkness.

The strategy depends on what you have available. If you have two Silk Shirts equipped (somewhat unlikely), Thunder will only hit for half damage, so defense will be much easier. If not, you can actually try throwing a Tent at it; Plant Brain will be fully healed, but there's a 50% chance of sticking it with Darkness and Silence (Poison will fail due to its immunity to the status), eliminating Thunder entirely and making its physicals miss quite often. Otherwise, you'll just have to heal if your HP gets low or you get hit with Darkness. Try to snag that Iron Helm, it's a nice defensive upgrade for Steiner at this point. Offensively, once you've picked its pockets, Fire Sword (deals around 450 damage) and Fire both do great damage. If someone is KO'd, Blank will show up, so you may actually want to attack until he shows up before trying to Steal, to give you two thieves. Later in the battle, have Zidane and Blank attack normally, Steiner with Fire Sword, and Vivi with Fire.

After the battle and scenes, there's nothing left but to run like hell. You may want to swap Blank's Silk Shirt for a Leather Shirt, to give you an extra Silk Shirt for your group. You'll encounter Plant Spiders, but they're not too tough. Once you reach the end of the road, there'll be more scenes, during which you'll receive the Continental Map Key Item.