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Read the FAQs for a trick or two about battle that I won't bother mentioning here. Remember though, that if Max dies, you'll return to the last town in which you saved , and lose half of your gold. You'll keep experience and items earned in battle, however. The names of the battles were invented by me, the number of enemies in each battle was taken from Col. G. L. Sicherman's FAQ and the strategies, and difficulty, are all my own work.
Battle 1: The Ancient Shrine
|Rune Knight (mini-boss)||1|
Winning Conditions: Nighty-night Rune Knight!
Strategies: As it is the first battle, This battle is not too tough. Follow the directions in the walkthrough (with regards to getting Gong) before you fight. Use everyone to fight but cast Blaze with Tao and heal with Lowe and Gong when necessary. The Goblins are passive and tend not to attack you unless you're right next to them. Use this to your advantage.
Be careful when you approach the Rune Knight because the Dark Dwarves will go after you. They do more damage than Goblins and have high defense. The Rune Knight is even stronger and has high HP, but his defense is only slightly higher than that of the Goblins. Watch out for him, however, as he is quite aggressive. Killing the Rune Knight wins the battle.
Battle 2: The Return to Guardiana
Winning Conditions: Defeat all enemies or enter Guardiana with Max.
Strategies: This should be an easy battle if you levelled up on the first battle, and even if you're only at 1 - 2, you should still win without much difficulty. At the beginning, the terrain is bad so there will be a few turns where nothing happens. Just approach your enemies keeping your force close together with Hans, Tao, Ken and maybe Max going ahead of everybody else to slaughter the goblins. Hans fights well in the forest and you gotta use that loser for something. Tao is also useful as she may already have Blaze 2 if your levels are high, which is good against the goblins because they are bunched together.
Your leader can protect the others, but I doubt you'll need him to because Goblins are weaklings and will barely hurt you. After taking care of the Goblins, move up to the Dark Dwarfs with the whole force and take 'em out. The Rune Knights are extremely harmless in this battle because of a little trick. Hans and Ken (And Tao's Blaze spell) all have a range of two so have them stand across the river from the Rune knights and bombard them. They won't attack you cause you're not next to them, and they are not programmed to move until you cross the bridge. This is the first of many examples of this game's pathetic AI. Killing every enemy or entering Guardiana with Max will steal the day.
Battle 3: The Road to Alterone
Winning Conditions: Kill all the enemies or enter Alterone with Max.
Strategies: Unfortunately, this battle is quite a bit tougher than the first two. The Giant Bats will attack you from the river area, while the Dark Dwarves will mount an attack on you right away. Send a few people to take out the bats, while the rest of the force takes out the dwarves. Watch out, however, as the bats, while almost as puny as Goblins, can put to sleep with their attacks. (Not to mention, half the time you miss them. Aargh! Tao! Front and Center!!)
When finished, move your entire force up as a group and go after the Rune Knights and the bats that cowered to the top of the screen. Watch out for the knights, as they are still very dangerous and seem to like ganging up on a single character. Make damn sure that no one important falls asleep because of the bats. Win this battle by killing all the enemies or by entering Alterone with Max.
Battle 4: The Battle of Alterone
|Dark Mage I||1|
Winning Conditions: Slaughter then all!
Strategies: This battle is still a bit tough but is easier than the last one. Early on, the Giant Bats will go after you. Slaughter there wimpy behinds and continue on with the fight. Move up a bit, and the Dark Mage and the Snipers will taunt you by going into a position where you can attack them with ranged attackers but they'll have the advantage. Remember that Snipers have arrows and Dark Mages can cast Blaze 2 fourtimes before running out of MP. Ignore them for now, and take them out later.
Two Rune Knights will charge you. Kill them, but heal if anyone is hurt after you defeat them. The other 2 knights guard the bridge you need to cross to progress. Take them out with long-range attacks as they won't move to attack you, and you can kill them with nary a scratch. Continue towards the remaining enemies who will be all bunched together. Hit them with Blaze 2s from Tao and use physical attacks to finish 'em off. Again, watch out for the Snipers and especially the mage. Killing all the enemies wins this battle.
Battle 5: The Road to Manarina
|Dark Mage I||3|
Winning Conditions: Kill everything or enter Manarina with Max.
Strategies: This outdoor battle can really be a doozey towards the end. Luckily the beginning is extremely easy and just consists of bats and dwarves guarding a bridge. Take 'em out, but be careful to not be put to sleep by the agile bats. Move up through the desert (which is excruciatingly slow) and take out the Snipers. As you approach Manarina, you'll have 4 Zombies and 3 mages to deal with. Zombies are extremely strong with high defence and the ability to poison. I'm sure you're already sick of Dark Mages.
Anyways, use a couple Blaze 2s on the Zombies, as they are weak against fire and take out the mages with physical attacks while being careful to protect Max and your weak characters. It might also be advantageous to not allow your characters to make horizontal or vertical contact with one another so that the Dark Mages can only target them one at a time with Blaze 2. This strategy is important any time you face multiple magic users in a small area of a battle field. DON'T FORGET IT. Win the battle by reaching Manarina with Max or by sending your enemies to an early grave.
(Personally, I'd give this battle a difficulty rating of 9/10... Why, you ask? Well, I admit that the beginning is easy, but the end is ridiculously difficult.
Battle 6: The Cavern of Darkness
|Skeleton I (Mini-boss)||1|
|Dark Mage I||4|
Winning Conditions: Rattle the Skeleton's bones!
Strategies: The beginning of the battle consists of a couple zombies guarding a passage. Kill them with Blaze and physical attacks from strong characters. Afterwards continue across the bridge and you'll fight some Giant Bats, Snipers and a Dark Mage. Take them out with Blaze 2s, attacks and Anri's Freeze 1 or Blaze 2 (if she has already learned it). Next, you'll run into 3 Dark Mages which is very dangerous if they get you before you get them. Don't let them do so, and use your magic defense formation, and you should be able to kill them without much trouble.
Now you still have Mr. Bones left to deal with. Use Blaze 1 to annihilate him. but try not to use physical attacks unless it's absolutely necessary. The Skeleton is even stronger than those darn Zombies, but never moves (a problem it shares with many bosses). Killing good ol' Mr. Bones wins wins this fairly challenging battle.
Battle 7: Rumble in the Tent
Winning Conditions: Snap Marionette's strings!
Strategies: Don't let the unimpressive number of enemies fool you. This is definitely the hardest battle so far, and easily one of the toughest in the whole game. The bats fall easily and give you just about no experience so you can ignore them unless they make you feel sleepy. The puppets look like pushovers but they have Freeze 1 and Ominous Incantation. (10-15 damage!!). Get rid of them! The Mannequins aren't too bad because all they have is poison, which is weak and easily treatable. The Dire Clowns are almost as tough as Zombies so be careful.
Now, after you take out the henchmen, it's time for Marionette. She is HARD. Watch out for her Freeze 3 with can hit up to 5 characters for 14-18 damage, usually killing them in one hit. Remember to keep Max FAR, FAR away from her! For more tips on how to beat her, read my Boss Strategies section, but don't forget the magic defense formation.
Battle 8: Church of the Living Dead
Winning Conditions: Give that Ghoul some ghastly treatment!
Strategies: Once again, bad things come in small packages. This tough battle only has 10 enemies. You'll notice that Max starts away from the rest of your force. Move him towards them as soon as you can or he'll perish rather quickly, costing you the battle. Since the undead baddies here are extremely strong but weak against fire, Blaze 'em to death and protect your mages, as they are the key to victory. Don't worry about the Zombie IIs because they have the same stats as Zombie's, but give you more gold and much more EXP. After taking out the enemies, go after the Ghoul with a barrage of physical and magical attacks. The Ghoul is basically a Skeleton on steroids, but it can put you to sleep. Watch out! Killing the Ghoul gets you out of this evil Chapel and into Chapter 3.
Battle 9: The Rocky Quarry
|Master Mage (Mini-boss)||1|
|Dark Mage II||2|
Winning Conditions: It's mage mashing time!
Strategies: This battle can be fairly tough, but if you won the last two, it shouldn't be much of a problem. You'll run into with a couple of skeletons early on, which are easily dealt with now that you got better weapons. After that you'll fight some Dark Priests, which are pretty weak but can heal and some, Dark Elves, a more powerful archer, but with poor defense. Go after the elves, being careful not to stand 2 squares from them, and take out the priests. Continue down and you'll fight a few more wimps before dealing with the powerful Lizardman and the dangerous Master Mage. Take 'em out but watch out for the Master Mage because he has 33 attack and can cast Freeze 2. Kill this evil wizard and victory is yours.
Battle 10: The Road to Pao Bridge
|Dark Mage II||2|
Winning Conditions: Bridge or massacre...your choice.
Strategies: This is an easy battle. Just move up and take out the enemies. Watch out for the Pegasus Knights, who are quick and fairly strong, and use Zylo to his full potential because the terrain here slows almost everyone down but gives him a BIG advantage. Kill all the enemies or have Max reach the bridge to win.
Battle 11: We'll Cross that Bridge When We Come to It...
|Silver Knight (Mini-boss)||2|
Difficulty: 6/10 (or 1/10)
Winning Conditions: As insulting as it sounds to the might of your Force, you must kill that puny Silver Knight on the far side of the battle field.
Strategies: This battle isn't as difficult as you'd think. Basically, you should just wait about a gazillion turns for the Laser Eye to kill the Dark Priest and the 3 Lizardmen. After that, charge the bridge and go after the Laser Eye quickly while taking out Pegasus Knights that get in your way. Kill the Laser Eye or just go past it and then defeat the boss, the Silver Knight that's the farthest from where your characters start the battle. Again, watch your position regarding the Dark Elves. I don't know why the heck the Silver Knight's boss because he's actually the wussiest enemy in the battle. Alternatively, you can ignore almost everything in this battle, and kill the Silver Knight with Balbaroy right away (assuming you're using him).
(Shivers: Gonna put in my personal strategy: Take your five strongest characters, including at least two characters that can attack from two spaces (Ideally Anri and Tao if they're strong enough to afford a hit or two from the dark elves without too much damage), and send them forward. There's a tongue of land where you and the archers can attack each other. Have the two long-rangers take out the archers while the other three take out the Priest/lizardmen/Peg. Knts. Then, pull all 5 onto the tongue of land, where the Laser Eye can't hit you. If you're using Balbaroy (and/or Amon) that's a freebie... they can hover out of the line of fire. If your levels are a little low, have a couple of the NEXT-strongest characters pull forward to help out with the first bunch of enemies. Just make sure you leave enough time for them to fall back, because the idea is to avoid being hit. Then, once the LE has fired, have everyone charge forward as fast as possible and take out the rest of the enemies. The laser eye takes 5 turns to charge, and fires on the sixth. However, if you dont want to be counting that, I'd suggest turning the [usually annoying] battle message on. It gives you a countdown so you know when to hide.)
Battle 12: General Elliot's Last Stand
Winning Conditions: You can figure it out on your own...I hope.
Strategies: This battle is not that hard. Move across the prairie and take out the Pegasus Knights and the Lizardmen. One of the Lizardmen is very strong and will give you a Heat Axe. It is recommended that you fight this battle at least twice to get 2 Heat Axes so that Gort and Luke will each have one when promoted. It pays off big time! Anyways, continue on by taking out the Silver Knights and the Dark Priests. You'll be left with an Artillery, Elliot and a Dark Priest.
Kill the Dark Priest and the Artillery (realizing that the Artillery is an archer type and can only attack from 2 squares). Finally, surround Elliot with as many characters as possible so as to limit the effectiveness of his ability to automatically restore 15 HP per turn. For obvious reasons though, don't use Max against Elliot himself unless absolutely necessary. Oh yeah, upon replaying the game, I've found out that Elliot can move.
Battle 13: The Wimpy Fortress of Balbazak
|Artillery I (Mini-boss)||1|
Winning Conditions: Kill both the door guards.
Strategies: Just annihilate everything, Egress to do it again, and gain a ton of levels. This is an extremely easy battle with enemies that give a lot of EXP (except the Dark Priests). The only threats to the force (and the only reason this battle did not get a 0) are the Hellhounds, as they occasionally breathe fire which can hurt you between 9-13. The Hellhound and the Artillery guarding the doors are the bosses.
Battle 14: Rumble in the Shipyard
Winning Conditions: If you can't figure it out, give up now.
Strategies: This guy's even easier than Elliot. Just annihilate the enemies, and exploit the fact that Balbazak never moves. Seabats are weak versions of Pegasus Knights, yet they give TONS of experience for some reason.
Battle 15: Lost at Sea
Difficulty Level: 0/10
Winning Conditions: It's more challenging to lose than it is to win...
Strategies: This battle doesn't need strategy because it's so pathetically easy. Just kill everything. If you really want strategy, split your force in two and have each side fight on one half of the ship.
Battle 16: The Fellowship of the Ring Reef
(Shivers: And I thought I made bad jokes.)
|Master Mage (Mini-boss)||1|
Winning Conditions: Mash that mage again!
Strategies: This battle is more challenging than the last, but it's still a cinch. Just divide your characters and slaughter the insanely weak enemies. Kill the mage to win.
Battle 17: Sailing Away to Prompt
Winning Conditions: Obliterate: (Verb) To wipe out or destroy completely.
Strategy: See Battle 15 except that wimpy monsters appear during the battle (reflected in the enemies section of this battle). Just a warning that the enemies are about much stronger next chapter, so don't sit on your rear end and expect to breeze through the rest of the game.
Battle 18: Road to the City of Dragons
|Durahan I (Mini-boss... And shouldn't that be Dullahan?)||1|
|High Priest I||1|
Winning Conditions: All your mistranslated enemy are belong to death.
Strategy: This one is more challenging than it looks, but is still relatively easy. Head through to the rough terrain towards the enemies guarding Dragonia, but be careful, as enemies will magically appear to block your path. The Worms and Artillery II are pathetically weak, but the Golems have good defense and the Master Mages still have deadly spells. Win by defeating the Durahan guarding Dragonia or by entering Dragonia with Max.
Battle 19: Am I Kane or am I Cain?
|Kane / Cain (Boss)||1|
|High Priest I||2|
Winning Conditions: Mistranslated boss have no chance to survive make his time.
Strategy: Although Kane himself is deadly, many of the enemies do not pack much of a punch. The Gargoyles are harmless, the Golems do not cause much damage despite their defense and even Master Mages are showing their wear, though their Freeze 2 is still brutal. Don't be lulled though, as Kane has 2 Durahans and a Master Mage to protect him, as well as a High Priest to heal him. When you finally get to Kane and his little posse, kill the High Priest first, kill the Master Mage afterwards, and then kill the Durahans.
With his defenders out of the way, Kane should be less deadly. But watch out for his high attack power and his Desoul magic which he can use through his Dark Sword. For safety reasons, keep Max FAR away. Eventually, you will win with a coordinated effort from your entire force.
Shivers: On a recent replay, I discovered something that makes this entire battle a cakewalk. Before he moves, Kane DOESN'T replenish HP. Huge oversight, but it means you can drop Lyle or an archer down with the Elven Arrow, take out the master mage, and then just zap Kane a hundred times, so long as you don't move anyone up the steps.
Battle 20: The Endurance Trek
Winning Conditions: Survive the trek by killing all the enemies or entering Skull Castle.
Strategy: As the lame name suggests, this is one LONG battle, unless you have Guntz, Kokichi, Balbaroy and/or Domingo! (Guess why) Although many of the enemies present are pretty much cannon fodder, the Bowriders have fairly high attack power and the Belials can screw you over with a couple of nasty Bolt 1 spells. The terrain is also bad, but this makes the battle more long that it is hard. hard. Keep it up and you'll eventually reach Skull Castle.
Battle 21: Misfortune of the Fortune Teller
Winning Conditions: The title of this battle says it all...
Strategy: Without Mishaela, this would be one of those relatively easy battles. Most of the enemies are weak, although the Belials, the Master Mages (which can Freeze 2 you 4 times in a row because of their positioning), and even the Bowriders can cause problems if you are not careful. Take out Misahela's flunkies quickly and then proceed with caution towards her.
When you reach Misahela, watch out for her Bolt 2, and use the Power Ring on the character attacking her, as only one character can hit her from one square away. Obviously, archers, flyers and mages help a lot as you can hit with more than one character at a time, which makes her HP recovery far less annoying. Just remember to get the Sword of Light only after you've opened every other chest, otherwise the chapter will end and you will miss out on some nice items.
Battle 22: The Trail to the Tower
Winning Conditions: Kill big dumb barbarian.
Strategy: This is another battle in rough terrain that also introduces some deadly new enemies. Pretty much all enemies here can be dangerous except for the Durahan II and Belials. The Torch Eye is especially deadly, as it has an attack range of 2 and can hit for around 20 HP of damage regardless of your defense. The wyvern has lower attack power but features a more powerful version of the Hellhound's Flame ability, while the Jets are fast (duh) and packs some decent attack, good defense, and above average magic power. The big, slow, strong Minotaur guarding the Tower of the Ancients is the boss here and you should be able to come through if you are well-levelled or plan an intelligent strategy.
Battle 23: The One Tower
|Demon Master II(Mini-boss)||1|
Winning Condition: Whip that Demon Master good...
Strategy: Ah, dreaded "climbing the tower" battle found in both this game and its sequel. (Shivers: And the original, and the gamegear games.... It seems to be a set feature in this series.) Luckily, although still challenging, it is considerably easier here. Despite this fact, the battle is no creampuff. Every enemy here has a dangerous attack and is a worthy opponent. Thus, unless you have a wide variety of fighting styles, you are at a disadvantage.
The Demon Master, who is your target, is especially bad, as it has Freeze 3, and because of its positioning, it can often hit you 1 or 2 turns before you can even attack it. Unless you have good fliers and ranged attackers, you will only be able to use one attacker at a time. Remember to get the chest containing the Valkyrie, as you will be unable to obtain it after this battle.
Battle 24: The Chaos Theory
|Demon Master II||3|
Winning Conditions: Break Chaos' circuits.
Strategy: Don't let the enemies fool you: this boss battle is not difficult at all for one reason only: Chaos will come charging right at you. Chaos, although fairly strong, is a weakling compared to Kane (which is unacceptable for this stage of the game...imho). (Beware of his torch eye-ish laser attack though!) Therefore, he should fall within a couple of turns before many of the enemies can even touch you. Nevertheless, watch out for the Torch Eyes and don't get cocky and fight everything unless your levels are high are high. Otherwise, you may be overwhelmed.
Battle 25: Ramming the Gate
|Demon Master I||2|
|High Priest III||1|
Winning Conditions: Kill the Armed Skeleton Guarding the gate.
Strategy: This battle can be nasty. The Cerberi are like Wyverns except they cannot fly, Minotaurs should not be very intimidating anymore, and the Demon Masters and High Priest are placed in positions were they are not all that dangerous. The Horsemen are moderately powerful archers with horrendous defense, but the Armed Skeletons make this battle fairly challenging if you're not careful, as they are the strongest normal enemy you have faced up to now. They can attack from up to 2 spaces with a laser-like power that hurts for about 20 and they have 62 in attack power with their Great Axes. Just be careful and you should be able to win this battle but with some difficulty. This battle finishes Chapter 7.
(Shivers: Alternatively, you can be cheap, and send whatever flier(s) you're using straight down and over the water. Again, the AI is so stupid that if you hug the wall, no one will attack you until you've beaten on the Armed Skeleton for a round or two.)
Battle 26: Castle of Horrors
|High Priest II||2|
Winning Conditions: The monsters must do what they do best... (Drop like flies in a heat wave?)
Strategy: This one's a toughie. The Chimeras have excellent all around stats, can fly, and evade frequently. Take them out quickly with powerful people before they wreak havoc on your ranks. Watch out for their Firebreath as well. Blue Dragons are like Chimeras, only they are ice-based and significantly less dangerous. When you take them out though, watch out for the Horsemen backing them up. They can reach you but you can't reach them unless you have Lyle or a good mage. The Armed Skeletons are as dangerous as ever, but the High Priests and the Cerberi are far from worthy opponents. Take out everything cautiously and efficiently and you should get to King Ramladu in the next battle. (Shivers: Don't forget that fire and ice creatures are resistant to the same type of magic as they have, and weak against the opposite. EG, use Freeze on Chimeras, and Blaze on the Blue dragons. This should make this battle a BIT easier.)
Battle 27: Ramladau's Technological Trap.
Farewell the jewelled crown,
Farewell to the velvet gown,
Watch it all come tumbling down,
Goodbye to the Crown.
Strategy: There are two ways to beat this battle: The easy way and the fun way. The easy way consists of charging up and slaughtering Ramladu, whilst the fun way consists of busting up his robo-guards as they chase you. If you go the easy way, kill Ramladu quickly, as he recovers 24 HP per turn and has 93 attack!!!!! If you choose to kill the Robo-guards, Ramladu himself will cause a lot less trouble. Use Bolt 3 and powerful attacks to kill the robots, cast Aura 4 to heal your party to full power, and defeat Ramladu, being as careful as possible due to his high attack.
Shivers: This is the last good levelling battle. Chances are that you can take out about half of the robots before any of them get a chance to attack you, and they give good experience. Just go for the Torch Eyes first, of course...
Battle 28: Three Heads Are Better Than One
Winning Conditions: Topple Collosus.
Strategy: The beginning can be quite difficult, as Jets, Blue Dragons, and Chimeras will surround you from the air while Horsemen and Armed Skeletons will pepper you with ranged attacks. Once you manage to defeat the Blue Dragons and the Chimeras, this battle becomes a lot easier. The Jets are honestly not much to worry about anymore, the Horsemen often fall to one blow, and the Armed Skeletons are much easier to deal with if you destroy their back-up.
Colossus himself isn't too bad either. He consists of three heads which can move independently to different sections of the battlefield. One head casts Blaze 3, the other casts Freeze 3, and the only that cause any real trouble is the third which casts Bolt 3. Kill the centre head (the one that casts Bolt 3) to win the battle. (Shivers: Geez, talk about split personalities!)
Battle 29: Caller of the Dragon
|High Priest II||2|
Winning Conditions: Well, duh...
Strategy: This battle is all about strategy if you do not have Archers and Fliers to help you. First off, you should wait a couple turns for the Torch Eyes to position themselves. Move up towards Darksol with your characters, being careful to stop out of range of the Torch Eyes. When you reach Darksol, the worst is over, but the battle is still no walk in the park. Darksol has quite a few powerful flunkies around him and has a powerful attack of his own: Demon Breath, which can hurt a small group of characters for 30 - 35 points of damage.
Take him out quickly with powerful attackers and be careful not to get anyone killed, as you will not have an opportunity to heal before you fight Dark Dragon (unless you feel like challenging Dark Sol again). That fact alone makes the battle considerably harder. If you do have Lyle and Kokichi (or any inferior archer-flier combination), you can disregard most of what I just said, as this battle is a cakewalk. Just exploit the stupid AI and you can kill everything in this battle, with the exception of Dark Sol and the the two Blue Dragons around him, without even getting hit.
Shivers: Actually, even without fliers or archers, it's still fairly easy (I was playing a no-ressurection game, so all I had left was Max & Pelle; using the Chaos Breaker, I was able to kill almost every enemy without any reaction. In the entire battle, Darksol included, I suffered a grand total of 4 HP damage.Obviously, part of this was luck that DS didn't cast demon breath, but still...)
Battle 30: Return of the King
|Dark Dragon (Boss)||3|
|Armed Skeleton||2 ++|
Winning Conditions: Get out the Guillotine....
Strategy: See the Dark Dragon section of the boss guide.