V1.00 A guide on how to beat Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia on hard mode using Shanoa with a level 1 cap - without using a cleared save. _____________ _____________ _______________ __ ___/__ / / /__ |__ | / /_ __ \__ | _____ \__ /_/ /__ /| |_ |/ /_ / / /_ /| | ____/ /_ __ / _ ___ | /| / / /_/ /_ ___ | /____/ /_/ /_/ /_/ |_/_/ |_/ \____/ /_/ |_| ______ ________________________ ______ ___________________________ ___ / / /__ |__ __ \__ __ \ ___ |/ /_ __ \__ __ \__ ____/ __ /_/ /__ /| |_ /_/ /_ / / / __ /|_/ /_ / / /_ / / /_ __/ _ __ / _ ___ | _, _/_ /_/ / _ / / / / /_/ /_ /_/ /_ /___ /_/ /_/ /_/ |_/_/ |_| /_____/ /_/ /_/ \____/ /_____/ /_____/ __________________ ________________ ____________ ___________ ___ /___ ____/_ | / /__ ____/__ / __ __ \__ | / /__ ____/ __ / __ __/ __ | / /__ __/ __ / _ / / /_ |/ /__ __/ _ /___ /___ __ |/ / _ /___ _ /___ / /_/ /_ /| / _ /___ /_____/_____/ _____/ /_____/ /_____/ \____/ /_/ |_/ /_____/ _______________________ __ ____/__ |__ __ \ _ / __ /| |_ /_/ / / /___ _ ___ | ____/ \____/ /_/ |_/_/ By: Micskill Copyright 2008 Michael Redding. Micskill@gmail.com Table of Contents (any part of the guide you want to go to, press ctrl-F and type in the key to the right in the search dialogue box, for example try KAL1 which will help you find the Kalidus Channel section without having to scroll around the guide. The table of contents KAL1 will pop up on the search first, simply click 'find next' and you will jump to the appropriate section of the guide.) ============================================================================= Versions ------------------------------------------------------------ [VER1] Forward ------------------------------------------------------------- [FOR1] Relevant equipment--------------------------------------------------- [EQP1] General Strategy ---------------------------------------------------- [GEN1] Breakpoints --------------------------------------------------------- [BRE1] Ecclasia ------------------------------------------------------------ [ECC1] Monastery ----------------------------------------------------------- [MON1] Ruvas Forest -------------------------------------------------------- [RUV1] Kalidus Channel ----------------------------------------------------- [KAL1] Minera Prison Island ------------------------------------------------ [MIN1] Lighthouse ---------------------------------------------------------- [LIG1] Return to Kalidus Channel ------------------------------------------- [KAL2] Tymeo Mountains ----------------------------------------------------- [TYM1] Misty Forest Road --------------------------------------------------- [MIS1] Skeleton Cave ------------------------------------------------------- [SKE1] Things to do with Double Jump --------------------------------------- [JUM1] Tymeo Mountains Revisted -------------------------------------------- [TYM2] Somnus Reef --------------------------------------------------------- [SOM1] Giants Dwelling ----------------------------------------------------- [GIA1] Tristiss Pass ------------------------------------------------------- [TRI1] Things to do with the Treasure Hat ---------------------------------- [HAT1] Oblivion Ridge ------------------------------------------------------ [OBL1] Argila Swamp -------------------------------------------------------- [ARG1] Mystery Manor ------------------------------------------------------- [MYS1] Dracula's Castle - Castle Entrance ---------------------------------- [ENT1] Dracula's Castle - Library ------------------------------------------ [LIB1] Dracula's Castle - Underground Labyrinth ---------------------------- [LAB1] Dracula's Castle - Barracks ----------------------------------------- [BAR1] Dracula's Castle - Mechanical Tower --------------------------------- [MEC1] Dracula's Castle - Arms Depot --------------------------------------- [ARM1] Dracula's Castle - Return to the Library ---------------------------- [LIB2] Dracula's Castle - Forsaken Cloister -------------------------------- [FOR1] Dracula's Castle - Final Approach ----------------------------------- [FIN1] Final Thoughts ------------------------------------------------------ [THO1] Credits ------------------------------------------------------------- [CRE1] Legal Notices ------------------------------------------------------- [LEG1] ============================================================================= VERSIONS [VER1] Version .05: 1/7/09 - Decided to do another FAQ following my Pacifist Niko Guide (located here - http://www.gamefaqs.com/console/xbox360/file/933037/53480). I hammered out most of how the guide should be written such as equipment prerequisites and critical item pickups for each area. Version 1.00: 2/16/09 - All areas completed including Dracula's castle, with the exception of the big cavern and training hall which are optional. Since is the first public release, please email any errors or omissions to Micskill@gmail.com ============================================================================= FORWARD [FOR1] Hard mode level 1 combines the insane difficulty of an NES era Castlevania game and combines it with the length of today's modern games. Without saving or emulation, this challenge would be impossible. Prepare for a lot of frustration, some of which I hope to mitigate by providing you with (among other things) equipment setups that allow you to survive at least one hit, as well as pertinent glyphs for each area that you traverse. Despite my advice, you will have to master finger gymnastics on the insanely small DS in order to beat this game. Power leveling is obviously not an option, but farming for gold and stocking up on health items is something you can - and will - do throughout the game. Prerequisites: Beat the game once. This unlocks hard mode, as well as the level one cap. Buying items via the DS wi-fi shop mode is forbidden. The file used must be a 'clean' file, meaning it has to have no previous data. ============================================================================= RELEVENT EQUIPMENT: [EQP1] Before each new area I will devote some text to ideal equipment that will help Shanoa on her quest. Glyphs, equipments and the health items that I ended up using should all be here. At the end of each zone I will also note all the items, glyphs and equipment that are critical to pick up before you progress to the next area. I'll also detail some strategies for new enemies encountered in an area, such as the enemy attack patterns and ideal glyphs to use against them. ============================================================================= GENERAL STRATEGIES AND INFO: [GEN1] The following pieces of advice apply universally in most phases of the game. The information that is lower in this section tends to be more item specific. SAVING: Save often. You can (and will) die repeatedly, so make sure you save after beating an area or getting a key item. Magical tickets can help here if you get an item and need to save. MAPS: Use the maps from Darth Nemesis located here (http://www.gamefaqs.com/portable/ds/game/945837.html) either on a monitor or printed for reference. It will be much easier to follow my directions with these maps at your disposal. You can do without them if you need to, but it's easier to handle if you can visualize where the save points and critical items are located. This faq will make frequent references to these maps in the form of Y-axis followed by the X-axis (such as C4). MONEY: Candles drop money if you are maxed out on hearts. The gold ring increases the amount dropped. Hitting candles while having full hearts will result in a gold drop. Without any gold rings, farming these candles for money generally will net you 750 gold per minute, which is fantastic early. You can also slide into candles on the ground which is better than standing and swinging. A jump-swing is equally viable since there is no recovery for midair attacks. INFINITE GOLD: Once you get two gold rings and the Inire Pecunia glyph, you can get rich quick in the Tymeo Mountains at J8. When you have the gold rings equipped and the Inire Pecunia glyph activated, each candle will net you 1000 gold as long as Shanoa's hearts are fulThe way it is done is to double jump and kick off the candle repeatedly. You can easily achieve 80,000 gold per minute this way. Using this method you can power up the Miser Ring to its fullest potential in about three hours. FARMING: Some enemies drop an item or glyph that is critical for Shanoa's quest. In these situations it can help to boost your luck via accessories at the expense of other stats, such as the fool ring or lucky clover. It isn't a bad idea to leave your DS on a few nights so your playtime is increased due to the Fortune Ring. The Fortune Ring (found late in the game) will give +1 luck for every hour of playtime. BACK DASHING: Pressing the left trigger will make Shanoa flip backwards faster than she can run normally. It will also interrupt any recovery animation from your glyphs. You will probably find yourself back dashing frequently in this challenge, even if you never used it previously. SLIDING: This attack - down and jump - is a quick slide that does minimal damage to enemies. Useful for getting under enemies that normally would hit you if you simply ran forward. Sliding is a necessary move to progress through the game and get certain treasure. MIDAIR CANCEL: Swinging in midair right before you land will cancel the recovery animation, which means you can attack again immediately when you land. DEFENSE: isn't nearly as useful as it was in a normal game, since having a strong attack hit you is devastating. One caveat: if having a high enough defense means you can survive one more hit than you would be able to normally, that is a huge advantage. I will detail the optimal equipment setups for each area and boss. STAT INCREASES: I will treat all HP, MP and heart upgrades as critical for progressing in this game. You can absorb glyphs to increase your overall element stats, but this isn't really a viable way to get through the game if you value your time. ENEMY ITEM DROPS: Highly dependent on luck. The Thief Ring also helps quite a bit if you get one later. The one hardest drop that is required for this FAQ is getting the Raw Killer Fish, which took me less than thirty minutes with the luck setup that I had at the time. RARE TREASURE: Some treasures respawn when you reenter an area. Occasionally, you will see these treasures sparkle. This is known as a rare treasure. Each area has four different items (some three) that contain a rare treasure. This faq will outline which of these rare treasures are necessary. Most of Shanoa's rare treasure hunts will occur once she gains the Treasure Hat, which greatly enhances the chance of a rare treasure appearing. KICK OFF WITH LEAP STONE: Once you get the leap stone, after double jumping, you can press down and jump to stomp downward. If you hit an enemy you'll do a token bit of damage and bounce off, able to jump again in midair. This is a good way to get to higher places (stomping off an enemy), or avoid taking damage if there is an enemy below you. EMPEROR RING: Acquired the second time around in Tymeo Mountains. Any time you are injured and need to use a health item, equip this first temporarily and eat or drink a health item to double its effect. This will help you save gold and health items. JUSTICE RING: This ring gives you a physical (striking or slashing) bonus depending on how many enemies you have killed. The consensus would appear to be that the maximum bonus is +34 to strength, or +1 to strength for every 3000 kills. Also from the Q&A from gamefaqs, oblivion and Riliyks note that the room with many Skeleton Friskies in the Skeleton Cove is the best place to get many kills at room C5. I have come to the conclusion that they are correct, and the frisky room is the best way to rack up kills. You can net about 80 killers per minute here, which means you can get +1 strength for every 37 minutes devoted to killing Skeleton Friskies. This FAQ will assume you don't max out the Justice Ring. MISER RING: This ring will increase your intelligence (and therefore magic-based damage) depending on how much gold you have. It generally takes a little more than 2 hours to get to 99,999,999 gold - which is the max - using the gold farming trick above to full power this ring, and this FAQ will assume you are willing to do this. A fully powered Miser Ring will grant +34 intelligence - a massive boost. Shanoa will acquire two of these rings in Dracula's castle, which makes the remaining portion of the game much easier. FORTUNE RING: If you probably want to utilize a powered up fortune ring, which requires a high playtime, to simply keep your DS on and plugged in while you sleep to achieve this. This item is available fairly late in the game however. ============================================================================= BREAKPOINTS [BRE1] Difficulty breakpoints: At certain points the game becomes easier even though the monster difficulty is being ramped up through your progress. These breakpoints come in generally two flavors, getting much better items than what you have currently and rescuing villagers that increase the total amount of consumable items you can carry. An exception is the Treasure Hat, it doesn't help much on its own but helps Shanoa get rare treasure for immediate use or for quest items. Here is a list, some of which have more significance than others. Rescuing Jacob on the first trip to the Kalidus Channel, giving you access to meat from the town. Rescuing Abram from Minera Prison Island and completing his first quest (for potions) Obtaining the Strength Ring by defeating the Tin Man at the end of the Minera Prison Island makes the next couple areas much easier Obtaining the Magician Ring from the Kalidus Channel makes the subsequent areas much easier Rescuing Aeon from Minera Prison Island and completing his first - and subsequent - quests for easy consumable items (very, very optional) Obtaining the Justice ring from the Monastary (after getting the Ignis glyph to clear out the blocks) - If you choose to power this up, it makes the subsequent areas much easier. Obtaining the treasure hat from Daniela: After capturing some art at the Tristis Pass, getting the Treasure Hat makes rare items pop up much easier, which will allow Shanoa to complete many quests. Completing all of Aeon's remaining quests - More consumables then you should ever need for any area or any boss, makes the rest of the game a breeze. obtaining two gold rings and Inire Pecunia - No more money problems, as you can buy as many consumables as you can carry, and when you get the Miser Rings from Dracula's castle you will dish out about four times as much damage as you normally would if those Miser Rings are fully powered (9 million plus gold). Miser Ring - This is gamebreakingly powerful once you max out on gold, which increases the power of the ring (described under gold farming above). You can actually get two of these, which I recommend in my faq. Between these rings and completing Aeon's quests, the rest of the game is a cakewalk. Rapidus Fio - This passive glyph found soon after the Miser Rings in Dracula's Underground Labyrinth allows Shanoa to avoid most confrontations due to her tremendous speed. It also is quite an asset for many boss battles. ============================================================================= THE MAIN STORLYINE: Fire up your DS and get crackin. Start a new game on a fresh file (NOT a cleared game) , choose character Shanoa on hard, level one cap. ECCLASIA [ECC1] PREREQUISITES: Nothing. Barlowe will provide you with your first glyph - the rapier. CONSUMABLES: you have two potions but don't use either of them. CRITICAL PICKUPS: none. OVERVIEW: You can skip the scrolling text at the beginning, but after that you still have to go through the dialogue with Albus and Barlowe. Once Barlowe teaches you how to fight, he'll pit against a couple skeleton heroes (no drops). Don't mess around here because you will die in two hits. Duck under the their ranged attack and get in close enough so that one of your rapier swings will hit the skeleton but not close enough for his sword to hit you. They have a distinct back-and-forth shuffle pattern, they won't really advance on Shanoa so it is easy to find the sweet spot where you can hit them and they can't hit Shanoa. You do have a couple potions but you don't want to waste them here. After they are dead, advance and save. You can go back to the training room and pick up record five if you have good taste. Record one is in the only vertical room in Ecclesia as a hidden chest in the upper-left. ============================================================================= MONASTARY [MON1] PREREQUISITES: Have your rapier glyph equipped in both X and Y slots. CONSUMABLES: none needed, but you start with 2 potions which I recommend you do not use at this point or it will make things much harder for the next area. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Before moving on to the Ruvas Forest, make sure you have obtained the heart max up in secret passage by the room where the ghosts and banshees are (E11), the HP max up at F5, and the MP max up at C7. Also critical pickups are the Secare and Ascia glyphs. If you have less than three pieces of meat I recommend getting more via common loot in the treasure chests the closest of which is at K10 from the entrance. It took me 2 potions and five pieces of meat for the Ruvas forest in my first run. OVERVIEW: Again, you will likely die in two hits from any enemy - which is a common theme for a lvl 1 hard game. Two glyphs to keep an eye out for are the Ascia glyph (the throwing axe) and the Secare (the sword) glyph. The sword glyph especially, while a bit slower than the rapier, is very useful since it will hit things above you - such as bats or bones thrown at you in an arc. If you don't have the Secare glyph by the time you get to the boss, there are plenty of bone scimitars in the final hallway right next to the second save point. Once the glyph appears quickly clear out any zombies and absorb it before it fanishes. Remember you can backdash to interrupt your attacks if you are about to get hit, which is especially useful with the aforementioned bone scimitars. It is worth it to activate the first teleporter on the ground level and then go back and save at Ecclesia so you don't have to crawl back out of the dungeon after defeating the first boss. In addition to the two glyphs, obtaining the HP, MP and heart upgrades are essential. It is recommended you go to the nearest save point after obtaining a glyph or upgrade even if it means backtracking. I did some testing and the armors combined did very little for me, only reducing damage between 2-5 depending on the enemy. Nevertheless, if you can get the sandals and cotton hat without much trouble, it may save your life in this area or in Ruvas Forest. As a general rule for the Monastery, it is best to kill the enemies in your path instead of trying to jump over them, except for the enemies that respawn. Remember, any area that has a candle is a source of challenge-free money as long as you have the maximum amount of hearts, such as C7 - which also happens to be close to a save point and teleporter. You can also stock up on hearts at this location before doing battle with the boss. BOSS - ARTHOVERTA: This guy isn't too difficult compared to the dungeon crawl, especially with a save point next door. Once it starts rolling use your Magnes glyph and hang out near the ceiling until it stops rolling around. If Arthoverta moves his claw out backdash immediately. The web attack can be similarly dodged by back dashing and then jumping straight up. MONASTARY MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: BAT (no drop): some of the vertical rooms have them spawning infinitely from the opposite side of the screen you are on. They will spawn and have the same flying pattern if you stand still, so it is fairly easy to get a read on how they move. Generally in the same vertical rooms there will be also bats that hang out on ceilings that are difficult to locate until they start moving. Remember where they are for next time if they wreck you. ZOMBIE (rotten meat): These spawn infinitely and drop rotten meat, which you shouldn't eat. One hallway -the last one- in particular before second save point spawn twice as many zombies and has five skeletons to boot. Don't be afraid to use up hearts via glyph combinations at this point. If you get this far and think you are going to die, it isn't the worst place to use up a health item. SKELETON (no drop): They throw bones at you when you get into a certain range. Swing three consecutive times then backdash. The Secare glyph will probably hit the bones before they hit you as well. GHOST (no drop): They fly around until they lock in on you, at which point they will stop moving for a second then streak towards you. Just hit them. BANSHEE (no drop): Hit them three times before they scream. They have 3 HP so don't worry that you do one damage per hit. Axes or sword glyphs are effective. BONE SCIMITAR (Secare glyph): Takes about four strikes. It'll telegraph it's swing briefly, but you have to hit backdash immediately before you get hit. The Secare is a common drop and worth obtaining. AXE KNIGHT: (Ascia glyph, copper ore) a bit tougher than most. It'll show where it intends to throw the axe so you easily decide to duck, jump or simply hit them. The axe glyph is a good drop to grab as well, you can farm the first room to get one since the Axe Knight is the first enemy you'll see in this dungeon. Definitely a good candidate to use a glyph union on if you are in a pinch. This is the first opportunity to pick up copper ore, but the ore is an infrequent drop. BONE ARHCER (Arcus glyph): It'll backtrack from you constantly. I will duck and knock his bow before firing, but the arrow itself moves very fast. If you are too close you may be able to jump over the archer. ============================================================================= RUVAS FOREST: [RUV1] PREREQS: I used two Secure glyphs (and the glyph union) throughout this area, but the axe glyph Ascia may have a place here as well even though it eats up a lot of MP. The consensus seems to be that this is the most challenging part of a hard mode level 1 game at this point, so if you can beat this you've already beaten arguably the hardest area. Hopefully you still have those potions. CONSUMABLES: I required the two potions that Shanoa starts with and five pieces of meat. Your mileage may vary CRITICAL ITEMS: none really, you can get the Macir glyph now or come back for it later before the giant skeleton boss. OVERVIEW: This area is quite a challenge. The old NES Castlevania games are difficult, but I don't remember any particular part from the older games that were more difficult than this. Hopefully you have the Secare glyph because that is the only weapon I used in this area. In any case, there isn't any new treasure that you must have like the Monastery. This level consists of three horizontal hallways outdoors. First Hallway: I prefer to run and gun in the first part. If you take a hit too soon you can simply die and reload. Normally I would make it through this point taking but one hit (or using to glyph unions) about a fourth of the time, which was acceptable to advance with. If you do take a hit, it is worth it to eat 2-3 pieces of meat or a potion. In fact, you can use all your health items as long as you survive this level. Go ahead run forward and jump over all enemies (or slide in the case of Nominons). There are a couple Unes, try to remember where they are when you see them as there are only two. You can slide through them as well, which I do frequently with the second Une. If the situation gets extremely hairy, feel free to use a glyph union with Secares (two swords) to clear up the screen. Second Hallway: Bats, skeletons and axe knights rule the roost here. Take it slow and eliminate everything that comes your way. A bat will fly at you every five seconds. Using the Secare glyphs, simply duck and swing every time one gets in range. If there is a situation requiring movement, you can slide backwords a couple times and duck or jump over the bat. Once you reach the halfway point in this hall, the bats will attack you from the back. They'll start attacking from the left when you reach the second axe knight. If you've made it this far, feel free to use a glyph union if things get scary as well as any health items you have remaining. Third hallway: Medusas will kill you if you get touched by one - either by health loss or by being turned to stone and tapped by another enemy. Fortunately they are not as quick as the winged guards or as hard to detect as bats. I think the run and gun strategy doesn't fly here, it is better to kill things as they come and systematically avoid any risk/damage. There are five Unes that are very problematic in this hallway, but you can see them by a ball of green pixels on the ground before the sprout and do damage. If you inch forward you will also see them coming a mile away. In my opinion it doesn't matter if you use all your consumable items at this point, because soon you will have access to the village shop. RUVAS FOREST MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: NOMINON: Nothing special here, smack it twice with Secure to end it's misery. If it locks in on you either slide forward or back dash to avoid - depending of course on the other enemies in the vicinity. WINGED GUARD: Found in the first hallway. Generally not worth attacking since it takes two hits. They are big and difficult to dodge, but up to three can appear on a screen. Just keep running. Sorcerer: Summons zombies to stumble at you. You can absorb his glyph while he is casting, but I haven't found it very useful. Just jump over him, touching his glyph doesn't damage you. Takes a few hits to kill. UNES: Very annoying as they aren't very visible. You can sometimes see them on the ground as a cluster of green pixels, but generally it's best to memorize where the two of them are in the first hall, and inch forward in the last hall. One hit will kill these. NECROMANCER: ignore and jump over it. You can absorb the zombie summon if you are feeling bold, I couldn't do it due to other enemies entangling me. MEDUSA HEAD: They are all yellow and will stone you if you touch them, which will result in your demise 90% of the time if the damage doesn't kill you. The good news is they aren't as erratic as bats or as fast as winged guards. ============================================================================= KALIDUS CHANNEL (KAL1) PREREQUISITES: Secure glyphs in both slots again, any armor you have. CONSUMABLES: I didn't use any health items for this area (I used them all in Ruvas Forest), but you will be able to purchase them soon if you need them. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Make sure you free Jacob (B12) so you can buy health items from Wygol Village. Nothing else is needed from the Kalidus Channel at the moment. The first three hallways are cake compared to the Ruvas Forest. Once you reach the middle at B14 you will find Jacob and a ticket to return to the village, which Isn't a bad if you want to buy some meat immediately. Now you can farm candles for money which can be used to buy meat - a very awesome proposition. There is a save point right after you free Jacob. The last three rooms are a bit more difficult, but still doable with using any health items. It's best to swim under water and smack up the merman three times to get them out of your face and jump over the needles since they take a long time to leap out of the water. Don't forget you can use a union glyph if things get crowded. Farm the candles near the save point (and then save) if you don't have enough hearts. The third and final hallway has a single merman and nothing else to hit you. KALIDUS CHANNEL MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: MERMAN (meat, zircon): Once you get close to them they start jumping up and down vertically out of the water. You can jump over them on the way down or wack them until they die. Drops are hard to get since you can't swim underwater yet. NEEDLES (salt) Don't jump on them. You can go under water and stab them if you would like, but you can't get their drop since it just falls underwater. SEA STINGER (no drop): These will fly out of the water at you at an ar. They'll angle their stinger upward slowly before they attack. You can jump over them if timed right or go under water to kill or avoid them. They can attack from the left or the right, so don't hang out near the edges of the screens. ============================================================================= MINERA PRISON ISLAND (MIN1) PREREQUISITES: Backtrack to the Ruvas Forest to get the Macir glyph from the first hallway. Run and gun through until you see the statue, and then use the Secure glyph union to clear out everything on the screen. Now hit the statue and quickly absorb the Macir glyph and use a magical ticket to get back to town. Equip the Macir glyph on both slots. Also equip the best armor you happen to have - you can buy some from Jacob if you desire (I didn't and don't recommend it). The Secure and Ascia glyphs are useful after the boss at the beginning. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: I used four meats and two potions in this area. The potions and some meat I purchased after rescuing Abrab, which is necessary to buy the potions. CRITICAL PICKUPS: MP up (H18), HP up (J18), heart max up (F24), Sage for later(common treasure), Hasta glyph (drop from spear guard), Cabriolet (H15), Abram trapped at K26, strength ring from the tin man at G32 Make sure you save before progressing. OVERVIEW: in a deviation from tradition, a boss comes before the dungeon. BOSS - GIANT SKELETON: He is weak to striking so use the Macir glyph. He will advance on you from the right and take swings at you if you get close enough. You can jump and hit him twice before he takes a swipe at you. If he kicks he will stand there for awhile letting you hit him a few times. Make sure you fling yourself over his head if he goes past the second Magnet-block-thing or you will get hit trying to get over him. Once he is on your left, get ready to fling yourself passed him again since he will scoot back toward you quicker. You will die in a couple hits, so don't get hit. It takes about eighty normal swings to kill this guy, but four glyph unions (you should have 60 hearts maximum) will put a big dent in his health. Save after he dies. In the next hallway you can farm spear guards for the spear glyph (which is useful) or just jump over them while avoiding the spotlights. Use a union glyph if you want to clear out the axe knight instead if need be since Shanoa has a difficult time jumping over these. More of the same in the next room, spear guards and spotlights. If you alert the evil force just jump up and down until you have room to slide under it. After reaching the vertical hallway continue to the right to reach the save point. There is a spear guard below you that you can safely kill until it drops its glyph Hasta (after saving of course). I started using this glyph in most situations at this point when he dropped it due to its superior range. Drop down and head over to the hallway to the right. Beware: the spear guards can attack you from below or above you with their spears. The axe glyph Ascia is a good option for this room and the rooms like it. You can reach the upper level with a simple jump from the ledge on the left near the edge of the screen. Grab the Cabriolet and don it. There is another treasure and most importantly, an MP up at the end of this hallway. Go back and save at the previous spot, or use a ticket if you need more health items (I haven't bought or used any more up to this point since the dreaded Ruvas Forest). Now go to the upper hallway and use Ascia to deal your enemies on below you (there is treasure on the upper floor). If a bone archer knocks an arrow run away from it and you should be able to time a jump over the arrow shot at you. The is a ring of the high priestess in a breakable wall in the next vertical room at G18 but I didn't think it was worth sacrificing your already extremely low attack. There is another treasure at the bottom of this vertical passage. Continue to the east. Past the outdoor bridge there is another vertical passage and an axe knight. Beware: There are some ledges that might surprise you in the middle of the room. There is a spear guard at the bottom of this room at J21 which will probably stab you if you don't expect it, which I found pretty lame being a couple rooms away from the teleporter. It's worth eating some meat in between the save point and the teleporter since due to the distance between the two - I ate one. Actually you may as well not hold back since it doesn't take too long to save up for more meat. The next hall starting at J20 is dangerous due to the first sighting of the invisible man. Make sure you have 30 hearts for two union glyphs to dispatch of him easily, as well as more than half your HP so you can take a hit. Killing the spear guard shouldn't be a problem for you at this point. Once you see the invisible man throw of his cloak hit just use two eligible union glyphs, preferably the sword or axe glyph since they arc - the invisible man will start out attempting to jump kick you in the face. If you are near death after defeating him don't panic, there is an HP up on the left side that will replenish your life. Drop down and go to the screen on the left to find a teleporter which you can use to go to the beginning of the prison, exit the area and save at the village. After saving, go back to Minera Prison and teleport back. Around K19 there will be some guillotines, more than I remember being in a normal game. Some are faster than others; it pays to wait for an optimal situation. Sliding also helps, I recommend using the spear glyph Hasta glyph to clear out enemies, just hit the bone archers four times consecutively and you shouldn't have to dodge their arrows. The part where there are three guillotines is hard to handle, hopefully if you get you will be knocked forward past the last set. It is also possible (optimal even) to step in between to guillotines, is the only possible way to get passed the three guillotine set as far as I can tell. Next At K21 you'll run into Albus. Absorb the Dominus glyph and move on. If you come back to this room afterword you will encounter the creature, which is very painful to kill without utilizing four glyph unions and a couple attacks OR Dominus Hatred before he reaches you. In the next hall there will be some blades swinging from side to side, memorize their distance and patterns and jump over them accordingly. There are also some spiky coffins that are seemingly in the background, if you walk past them you'll get killed. You can jump over them or slide passed them, sliding is usually safer due to the blades swinging. Collect the money bag and move to the screen to the right and rescue Abram. The next save point isn't close. If you have acquired sage from one of the common chests you may want to ticket back to the village and stock up on some potions or meat. Whether you get more consumables or not, go back and make your way up. Feel free to farm hearts or money where you rescued Abram as well. There is another invisible man in the next hall. Don't mess around, just kill him with union glyphs and use health items if necessary. There is another Creature here, try to get close enough to him and make him use his attacks in order to slow him down before he pins you against the wall. I found the Hasta (spear) glyph to be the most useful. Use all your hearts up as well, I had enough for two more union glyphs. Dominus Hatred is a good option against this enemy as well if you are having trouble killing him before he traps you against the wall. Next is another vertical passage, run in and straight forward to get below the shot of a skeleton archer. You can nail all these guys safely with your axe glyph. After the bridge the last thing standing between you and a save point is a spear guard, which you can kill with any union glyph or hang out and wait for him to get in range of your axes. He shouldn't throw a spear but if he does exit the screen or jump over it if you are feeling bold. Go ahead and save, but don't forget grabbing the heart max up at F24, you should save after that as well. The next hall has the usual assortment of spear guards complicated by a couple demons. After saving you shouldn't be too rattled, but the combination does pose a challenge. I recommend a couple union glyph doses to alleviate the situation. Don't forget the cat or the treasure, use the spear or even better the axe glyph to take out the remaining spear guards. The upper level is a bit safer because you have more room to jump if you need to. The next room presents an archer, but it can't hit you from the ledge that you are standing on right next to the room entrance. Take your time getting around this guy and use the teleporter to get to a save point in the village. After you return, go down and grab the sickle glyph, then move to the hall to the west. The electricity shouldn't be difficult compared to what you have been through. Like with the traps earlier, watch the pattern and react accordingly - you can take one hit without dying. Once you absorb Vol Fulgur, run back to the teleporter and save at the village. After you return to Minera Prison, go to the hallway to the right and equip the axe glyph to deal with the demons. You as well use up some hearts via union glyph since the exit is very close. If a spotlight locks onto you before you get halfway through this hallway you'll probably have to run back and return, since it is impossible to jump over the tin man enemy without the double jump relic. Once you exit the area, go back to the village and save. Before progressing to the lighthouse, assign Dominus Hatred to one of your glyph sleeves. Go back to Minera Prison at the eastern exit. Return to the room with the spotlights and demons. Clear out the demons with the axe glyph like before, and swap to the Dominus Hatred setup. Avoid the spotlights until you reach the fourth one from the right, and let it spot you. Immediately after you see him appear, sprint to the right while spamming Dominus Hatred as MP allows. It should go down before it hits you without you having to utilize any tonics. After that be sure to duck before the tin man shoots you, then slide close to it and use any glyph to destroy it, which may take awhile since most glyphs do 1 damage per hit. Once it dies go to the middle of the room at G32 and grab the strength ring. I recommend equipping it, but remember if you use a magic based attack it pays to remove the ring since it lowers your intelligence. MINERA PRISON ISLAND MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: EVIL FORCE: (no drop): don't touch the spotlights or this will come out. It doesn't drop anything and you can't level up so there is no purpose in fighting these. SPEAR GUARD: ( ): They will swing at you if you get close so utilize the ol' hit and back dash if he raises his spear. The tip of his spear doesn't do damage if you touch it while the spear guard isn't swinging but he may charge forward and stab you at any moment without any visual clues. Sometimes they will raise their spear vertically which is a sign they may hurl it at you, so be prepared to jump if you are far away. INVISIBLE MAN (no drops): this guy will wreck you if you aren't quick. Make sure you have more than half HP so you can take a hit. You can either soak up a hit and run past him and drop down to the next area, or hit him with a couple union glyphs which still means you will probably take a hit. The first time I encountered him I tried to get the HP but died since I was too slow, the second time I used the axe union glyph twice which felled him, but he still nailed me. THE CREATURE (no drops): Equip the spear glyph hasta, use the union attack four times and swing a couple more times to drop this guy. Good luck beating him without 60 hearts. DEMON (no drops): throw axes at it will dodging its attacks. TIN MAN: (???, ???) run away while firing of Dominus hatred. Three hits will break him down, then duck and slide up to him, crouch, and hit him for about a minute until he falls with any glyph of your choice. ============================================================================= LIGHTHOUSE (LIG1) PREREQUISITES: The Strength ring makes this much easier. The Ascia glyph is the weapon of choice for this boss. Also ensure you have the Magnes glyph equipped. You should also have 168 max HP, 100 max MP and 70 max hearts at this point in the game. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: 2 potions, 4 meat CRITICAL PICKUPS: Luminatio at B5, freeing Eugen at Q6, serpent scale relic at Q5. Again, make sure you save before going to the Lighthouse. OVERVIEW: A boss-only area, and he is no pushover. Move to the right and use the Magnes glyph to get over the spikes. Move right and make your way upward until suddenly... BOSS - BRACHYURA: Two hits generally will kill you, barring consumable health items. These ledges you can pass through, so sliding is not an option. Continue jumping up until you get to the top, then hang out in the upper right, crouch, and start flinging axes at this beast. None of the attacks hit you except for the bubbles, if he points his mandibles in your direction that means he is going to start spitting bubbles at you. If this happens drop down, duck, and keep throwing axes. Occasionally a bubble can tag you here and poison you, so make sure you don't have four axes on screen at once or you won't be able to pop it before it touches your face. Once the bubbles are done jump back up and resume throwing axes - making sure of course you are hugging the wall on the right. Alternatively, if he starts spitting bubbles you can also run to the opposite side. Once you do enough damage (after about a minute of axe-throwing) it will turn red, at this point you should run to the left and drop to the lower left. Let it hit the ceiling a four times until it breaks. His third swing at the ceiling seems to be unavoidable. I suppose that's why I needed the health items I used. Continue upwards after Brachyura breaks the ceiling. When you get to the next ceiling, hug the upper left ledge and start throwing axes again. If he starts blowing bubbles drop down and hit them before they touch you or use the Magnes glyph to fling yourself to the opposite side, which I think is more difficult. Another common situation - if he brings a claw up to your face, stops and then retracts the claw, drop down. After he slams the claw where you were standing, jump back up. Before going red, If you are hanging on the lower left ledge he will slowly move his claw towards you and tap you with it, so jump to the higher ledge if you notice this happening. Let him smash the ceiling a couple more times and continue you upwards when it breaks. Almost done. Jump upwards and use the Magnes glyph when necessary. Stick to the upper left ledge unless he puts a claw in your face, signaling that he is about to strike. Drop down and jump back up after he hits the left wall. Also drop down if he begins to blow bubbles. Other than those situations, never stick around on the lower left ledge as he will hit you repeatedly. Keep throwing axes when Brachyura permits you. If you find yourself on the lower ledge dodging the bubbles, using your hearts is a good idea. I used four Ascia union glyphs, but if you have a couple milk items that will give you enough hearts for a fifth one if you are so inclined. Remember, the upper left ledge should be your default position unless he blows bubbles or is about to strike up there. When he gets red, stay on the upper left ledge and crouch. Three hits later and he'll break the ceiling. Use the Magnes glyph to fling yourself upward quickly. Once you reach the highest point, jump through the whole in the roof and press the down button to activate the elevator which will crush Brachyura. After he is defeated, take the elevator back to the top. Go to the right or left and use the Magnes glyph to get to the highest point of the lighthouse. Absorb Luminatio at B5, then fall or take the elevator back down. Go to the right and rescue Eugen, and then grab the serpent scale relic on the way to the exit. Go back to the village and save. Eugen's first quest is to obtain three iron ore, which is one of the common drops back at the Kalidus channel. Since you have the serpent relic allowing, go ahead and return there now. ============================================================================= RETURN TO KALIDUS CHANNEL (KAL2) PREREQUISITES: Strength ring, Ascia Glyph, Luminatio glyph, serpent relic, iron plate, iron leggings (obtained from the village after you get some iron ore) CONSUMABLES NEEDED: a couple pieces of meat was all that I needed due to the abundance of exits and saves, not to mention an HP max up. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Saving Monica at K12, three heart max ups at C4, D20, and H17, hp max ups at C22 and F17, MP max ups at D20 and J9, and the magician ring at K8, Sapphire at G20, Grando glyph from the sea demon (first appears at F17), Fortis Fio at F9 OVERVIEW: It is best to return to the upper parts of this area to grab some of the essentials, then progress to the lower parts. Return to the upper left entrance. Make sure the serpent relic is activated, then explore under the underwater from left to right. You'll find the heart max up first at C4 and a killer fish, which has a drop you need for a later quest. The drop doesn't come easily however and your luck is abysmal without items, so I recommend coming back for this later. Continue to the right and nab the MP max up at C16 and the HP max up at C22. I also recommend exiting and reentering the area until obtain three silver ores from the common treasure at C10. You may already have a iron ore from a previous treasure pickup to make this a bit easier. Once you have three iron ores, go back to the Village and talk to Eugen He'll give you some money and unlock the iron plate and iron leggings, armor I finally recommend you buy. Once you are equipped with your new armor and the new max upgrades, save and enter the Kalidus channel from the lower right, an area you haven't explored. The Ascia glyph and the strength ring can deal with most enemies efficiently except for the fish heads. Don't miss the heart max upgrade at H17 (there will be needles which could obscure your view of the treasure chest) before you reach the first teleporter. Once you reach the teleporter and activate it at H20, move to the screen above that. This screen is full of fish heads, and I recommend ignoring them for now and swimming up and moving left to the closest corridor on the left and go for the HP up at F17. Some fishheads will block your path so break out the Luminatio glyph. You can hit the jump button and avoid being hit by the top most fishead while hitting them with Luminatio. You will run into a sea demon soon after which has pretty much the same pattern as the old regular demons, just throw some axes at it. You can also absorb it's ice glyph Grando, which I recommend for later. Returning to the difficult vertical hallway with all the fish heads at F20, once again switch to the Luminatio glyph and throw out a couple glyph unions to quickly eliminate the fish heads guarding the sapphire - which is needed for a quest later. Continue up and go to the hallway on the left. Axe away at the anemic octopuses and swim left. Go up and to the right hallway next (D17) while ignoring the fishheads. Axe all the Gelsos here first. Be careful not to hit the bomb-thingie, if you do reenter the screen. Push the bomb device next to all the boulders and hit it to blow them up. On the right past a breakable wall you will pick up a heart max and MP max up at D20. You can also continue upward and go back to familiar territory. I recommend exiting, saving and possibly restocking at the village if need be. You can reenter the Kalidus channel from the upper right and go back the way you came which is faster than entering from the lower right. Backtrack and progress to the southwest. Once you get to F15 you'll encounter some Gelsos and a Forneus, which is also weak to slashing - aka your axes. Once you wreck them continue to the left and you'll reach a save point. Go left to a vertical corridor and swim to the top to encounter four merman and a treasure drop. Returning to the vertical corridor, go down a floor and move to the left while having the Luminatio glyph equipped. There will be quite a few fishheads that a Luminatio union glyph or two should handle easily. Fortis Fio will be in a treasure below them, which is an okay passive glyph at this point since your only other option is Magnes. Continue to the room to the left and clear out the Needles and Gelsos. Move the exploding barrel around until it floats up to the blocks. You can exit and enter the area here at any time, which is much faster than starting again from the lower right. There is also a warp to your left. After blowing up the blocks and activating this warp, return back to the save point that you were at recently and continue to the southwest. You will run into the Scutum glyph which I don't think I ever used. Keep going southwest, mowing through your enemies with Ascia the axe glyph or Luminatio if there are Fishheads. After another couple screens you will reach the final exit on your left with an iron ore right above it if you still need some for Eugen's quest if you didn't get the iron ore earlier. Go back to town and save as well as replenish your hearts and life, then return the Kalidus channel from the lower left entrance. Move to the right but down instead of up. You'll encounter the sunken ship, where you will find the last MP up at J9, a lot of money, an emerald, a mouse (keep this in mind for a quest later), other assorted common or rare treasure and a couple new enemies. Both the skull spider and specter are easiest to kill with Luminatio. At the bottom to the left there is the magician ring between two candles that you must duck to obtain - get this before moving to the right so the skull spider doesn't respawn. Then move to the room to the right and rescue Monica. Use a ticket to get back to the village for minimum hassle. The Magician ring is great for magic attacks, having the strength and magician ring equipped will net you more attack points overall than not having either. Having rescued Monica you can start fulfilling her quests, which is a great idea, but I prefer the iron armor over the dresses at this point. You can purchase the dresses and use them depending on the situation if you wish. MORE KALIDUS CHANNEL MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: MERMAN revisited (meat, zircon): underwater they aren't as dangerous in my opinion. Hit them a couple times and they die with slashing glyphs. Sometimes they spit fire at you, which is kind of odd considering they hang out underwater. FISHHEAD (Salt): Luminatio is the way to go here. The fishheads will part their mouth slightly before they shoot their ranged shot at you, but you shouldn't be on a horizontal level with it at any point. DARK OCTOPUS: Kinda slow. Throw some axes at it or otherwise kill it with any slashing weapon. Sometimes it releases a cloud of ink, which you shouldn't be close enough to worry about. KILLER FISH (????): the swim around horizontally. Throw some axes at it or otherwise dispose of it with a slashing weapon. Not very dangerous, but has a drop you want for a quest. Come back for this when you have items that improve your luck and improve rare drops. SEA DEMON (GRANDO GLYPH): It moves like the normal demons and also falls quickly to a few axes. Utilize the glyph union if you feel like you have too. Don't forget to absorb Grando, it will be useful later. GELSO (no drops): little squid guy homes in on you. Stab it with something a couple times before it touches you - may as well go with Ascia since that is the safest and most usable glyph for this area. These respawn but you can hear them coming. SPECTER (no drops): run away while throwing out Luminatio and it will fall. Luminatio union glyph also does the job quick. Skull Spider (???, ???): Very fast and can poison. Nail it from above with Luminatio where it won't pose a threat. ============================================================================= TYMEO MOUNTAINS (TYM1) PREREQUISITES: Luminatio is the choice glyph for this area. I also highly recommend dumping your strength ring and equipping all intelligence increasing equipment, such as the magicians ring and the Sequined Dress from Monica, the villager you rescued recently. You should have enough cotton thread - five, but if you don't have them you can get cotton thread anywhere from the Monastery up until the Kalidus channel (which has a better chance of dropping cotton thread) in the common chests. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: I used about four potions and six meats, CRITICAL PICKUPS: MP up (H6), Empress Ring (C23) OVERVIEW: A straight run from the lower left entry to the upper left. Most of this area is inaccessible to you currently. There is one warp worth activating and other than the save point near the lower entry, you will be doing a straight run without reprieve. For this reason I recommend maxing out your health items, using a ticket to escape a jam just means you have to do it all over again. Remember to equip Luminatio and intelligence increasing items. Starting from the lower left you'll be assaulted by crows, medusa heads and winged guards. The winged guards and medusa heads you can you can dodge and ignore, but the crows stay on screen and keep flying at you. I recommend a fire-and-forget strategy where you shoot off Luminatio balls and concentrate on dodging your enemies. You can climb all the way up and to the right to save if you like, although the getting down from there without getting hit is a bit trickier than starting from the lower entrance. Moving left you'll find a couple Rock Knights. A couple Luminatio glyph unions and a two-three normal attacks will take them out. The Luminatio balls usually will break the rocks before they hit you, but be prepared to jump over them if one is tossed at you. Continue left until you see a treasure. Stay on top of this area where you can't be hit by the Nightmare running around below you and kill it with Luminatio, which can take about a minute since it blinks in and out of existence. After it dies progress left but beware of the falling stalagmites - back dash to the right when one starts to fall. After they are all down, jump on them and go up. There are quite a few Skull Spiders here, which hurt you a lot and do damage. Fire away with Luminatio while standing on the far left where the first skull spider can't reach you, then progress upward. Stay on the sides where the spiders can't reach you, and don't forget about the breakable with the wall to the left at N2 for the Empress ring, which I recommend equipping. Be careful for the spiders on the way out, you will probably take a couple hits here. Head up and to the right. Make sure Magnes is equipped on the right trigger. This room is terrible. You have to use Magnes to traverse the spikes will yellow medusa heads (100% stone) fly around. In my opinion it is a crap shoot, it took me four tries to get past this part. However, I have noted that if you are 'chasing' the medusa heads, it reduces the likelihood that one will appear from the right in your face. It also seems to help to not fully charge Magnes, which gives you some degree of control over where you are flinging Shanoa. Go up if you manage to get by the medusa-spike room. Most of this stuff is the same as what you have encountered previously on your way up, and you should still have more than enough health items to navigate it. Don't forget saving Laura on the right at K9 and activating the teleporter on the left at J7. When you get to the top go left (the area to the right requires double jump which you don't have). The forest area has a very dangerous enemy. You can get the MP up at H6 or wait until you've secured the upper left exit and return for it later. One enemy that will one-hit kill you is the Cave Troll. It is best to try and lure it to the right and have it jump around on the branches, then run under it to the left, and don't look back. It has a big range with its tongue so beware. Sliding can help. Once you make it past this place, go back to town and save!! OPTIONAL: I recommend going on a silk thread run. Go to Laura who you just rescued and give her a Lapis Lazuli - you should have at least a couple. If not you can get one from a common chest drop in the Kalidus channel. After that quest, buy two Lucky Clover accessories, which combined with the Sequined Dress should push your luck to 10. This will help rare treasures appear. With this equipment setup, return to the lower left entrance of the Kalidus channel and go back to the sunken ship towards the lower right at K9. There are three chests that respawn here, and with the luck setup you have now generally one rare treasure will appear every two visits. Sometimes you'll get more rare treasures in one trip, and of course sometimes you will get none a few times in a row. After grabbing the loot use a ticket and sell off the useless stuff (such as iron, lapis lazuli etc) and buy more tickets if need be. The rare treasure you want is five silk threads and should take you a little over an hour. I couldn't find any gold rings at all doing this even though I got one in my normal game run, but if you find one more power to you, it will make your money runs -much- more efficient. CROW: Jump over them as they swoop by. They may go off screen but beware, they'll be back. ROCK KNIGHT: Rock Knights have quite a few hit points but aren't really dangerous. Hit their rocks before the rocks hit you or dodge them. It is almost impossible to jump over the Rock Knights without getting hit due to the way they arc the boulders that they throw. A couple glyph unions and some regular attacks is the quickest way to dispose of them. NIGHTMARE: Stay on the high ground and hit him with Luminatio as it runs by. Kid stuff. CAVE TROLL: Beware - this guy can one hit kill you at full HP. Try to get in a position where it is constantly jumping around above you as you race under it. If you feel like you have to kill one, don't hold back - use up all your hearts and utilize attacks that don't put you at risk, usually magic attacks that aren't straightforward - such as Luminatio. ============================================================================= MISTY FOREST ROAD (MIS1) PREREQUISITES: Grando, Luminatio, intelligence raising equipment such as the magicians ring and hopefully the Corset dress if you got five silk threads and completed Laura's quest. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: Bring max meat and potions, you'll probably need them. I drank six potions and ate six pieces of meat. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Vol Macir... I guess... You can also attempt to get cashmere threads from rare drops with a luck setup, but I came back and did this later. OVERVIEW: A straight shot from right to left, I found it to be one of the more difficult areas at this point in the game. After entering the room to the left, you will be immediately confronted by a Grave Digger and two bitterflies. Launch some Grando spikes and eliminate them, try not to hit the grave digger yet because he'll come at you and complicate things. When your MP regenerates fully, attack as fast as you can with Grando. Duck when he throws his shovel, and when he gets close to you and attempts to kick, jump straight over him. If you get kicked you'll probably be launched off the screen and have to start over. Continue to the left. There will be a couple Specters which you can kill or ignore, and another Grave Digger which should be easier to deal with since you have more room to work with. In the next room a Black Fomor will come at you. Take it out with Luminatio or Grando, if it attempts to cast a spell simply absorb the glyph. Umbra is actually pretty good against Bitterflies but I stuck to Grando. Keep going left where you'll find another Gravedigger. On the next screen you'll find Vol Macir and more aerial opponents and a werebat on the left. Jump over any bats that are summoned, and take her out with Grando or some axes. The next room has a dangerous enemy, and since it has a crazy amount of HP I recommend just sliding into it and using the invincibility time to run past it, neither Enkidu nor the White Dragons have any drops. You'll see more of the same as you continue to the left, the enemies shouldn't surprise you anymore. Hopefully you'll have enough health items to get by, this is the last screen. Once you exit go to town, save and restock on health items. MISTY FOREST ROAD MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: BITTERFLY: Weak to slashing but I prefer using Grando with intelligence improving equipment. Two hits of Grando will take them out. They'll vanish and reappear close to you, usually above you. GRAVEDIGGER: I prefer Grando with the gravedigger as well since you can keep your distance. He throws shovels at you at a certain distance, simply duck to dodge. He'll lunge forward with a kick at Shanoa when he gets close enough, but he telegraphs it so you see it coming. You either back up or jump directly over him if timed correctly. SPECTER: Grando is still effective if he isn't too far above you. Otherwise use Luminatio. Easy to dodge, just don't let him touch you. BLACK FOMOR: Grando works fine here, if it attempts to cast a glyph just absorb it, which will net you the Umbra glyph. It's also weak to Luminatio. ENKIDU: A very tough creature to take down. The easy way is to slide into it and take some damage then kill it from behind - or just keep going without killing it since it doesn't drop anything. Weak to slashing. WHITE DRAGON: Moves around erratically and shoots fireballs at you. Weak to Luminatio, usually falls to a couple Luminatio glyph unions. These dragons are harmless if they aren't facing you. ============================================================================= SKELETON CAVE (SKE1) PREREQUISITES: Striking weapons work well here, such as Vol Macir from the previous area. I prefer intelligence items and Luminatio however since you can hit multiple enemies from different places without getting close. The Cabriolet helmet should be available from the store. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: Nine Meats, nine potions. CRITICAL PICKUPS: MP max up at E11, Leap stone at E2, George at E2. After obtaining the leap stone: Heart Max Up (B14), HP Max Up (C2) OVERVIEW: As the name implies, there are many skeletons in this area, all of which are weak to striking weapons and light magic. I prefer Luminatio due to its versatility. Once you enter the first room to the left there will be a few Frisky Skeletons. Duck kill them as they jump over you, try to be quick because some Dullahans will be marching at you soon, which means you have to jump over them. After they are disposed of, continue to the left and you'll see some Bone Pillars right after a treasure you can't reach at the moment. The fireballs are difficult to dodge because they are so fast. A sneaky way to dispose of them is to inch forward after you pass the treasure. Once they appear on screen stop moving forward they shouldn't be firing at you. Now turn around and jump straight up. When you hit the apex of your jump fire a couple Luminatio attacks and you should hear the Bone Pillars getting hit as the lights circle around. Once the Bone Pillars are all destroyed, progress to the left. In the next room are some Friskies and a dangerous blade master. Lure the blade master out and deal with him before advancing. You can utilize a couple Luminatio+Vol Macir glyph unions to take him out or jump over him and run past him. If you do kill him, you can then destroy the Bone Pillars and the skeleton above you and grab the treasure, but it isn't really worth it to take these measures unless it is a green rare treasure. After dropping down the next room you will encounter some Winged Guards and Skeleton Heroes. There is a candle to the right which I recommend farming until you have 70+ hearts if you have less than that. Generally the swirling movement of Luminatio will protect you from the Winged Guards although you may have to adjust your position. The Skeleton Heroes swing and shoot a magic projectile at you which you can simply duck to avoid. Don't head left now because you need the double jump ability to get the HP up at C2. Make your way to the right and kill any remaining Dullahan's, hopefully some died from your earlier Luminatio attacks. In the next area, kill the Dullahan that approaches from the left and then kill off the Skeleton Rex and white dragon safely with the ranged advantage of Luminatio. Try to grab the hearts if the dragon drops some. After dropping down to the next area you will be immediately put to the test by three Bone Pillars on the right. Take them out with a couple Union Glyphs of Luminatio + a physical weapon union attack. Clear out all the Bone Pillars on the level below you as well so you can get to the treasure. There are more Bone Pillars to the left - inch forward until you can barely see them like the first time, turn around a fire off Luminatio shots, they shouldn't shoot at you if done correctly. In the next room there are a couple Skeleton Rex enemies. Use your remaining hearts on glyph unions to take out the first guy, then just use Luminatio while jumping and backdashing from the last Rex. By the end of all this you may have used up all your health items, which is fine because the boss is quite killable without taking any hits. Save in the next room. MAN EATER: It will emerge from below so don't stand in the center of the room. Fire off Luminatio while keeping your distance from the tentacles. The lower tentacle in particular is nasty because it will appear from below the ground where you may not expect it. If the tentacles stop moving, that means they are about to fire off a projectile blast, so back off and put yourself out of harm's way. If the stops and pauses and moves up briefly, it is going to slam down to the ground soon. One final thing to watch out for are small bouncing red things which may be hard to detect. They can be killed by your shots though and it I best to knock them out when you notice them. Generally you should fire off Luminatio while jumping and scooting backward until you are about to be cornered, at which put you should slide under the boss when the tentacles allow you. You will die in two hits so use health items if you have them. Consistent shots from Luminatio will take this guy out in a little over a minute. After getting the Leap Stone and saving warp back to town, replenish hearts and save. Now return to the Skeleton Cave. Grab the Heart Max Up near the beginning at B14 then make your way to the far left. In C5 there are many Friskies and a Skeleton Hero. You can use some hearts here but I recommend running to the left to the lower part so the Skeleton Hero won't hit you with his ranged attacks when you duck. There are a lot of Friskies but they are harmless since they will jump over Shanoa. Fire off Luminatio attacks from this sweet spot until they all die. SKELETON CAVE MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: SKELETON FRISKY: Simply duck and beat it with a striking weapon or Luminatio. They will jump over you, so don't attempt to jump over them. DULLAHAN (Vol Confodere): They march forward towards you and are also weak to Luminatio. They'll lunge forward and stab at Shanoa when they get close enough but it is very easy to dodge since they cock their hand back before stabbing. Back dash or jump over them if this happens. They occasionally drop the next rapier upgrade, which is a decent straightforward slashing glyph. BONE PILLAR (no drop): These guys shoot fire at you when you are on their level horizontally. The fireballs are fast but you can hit them with a weapon. Using a light glyph with a striking or slashing weapon union attack (such as Luminatio and Ascia) will kill them in a couple hits. Sliding into a fireball won't hurt you, which is a good way to get in close without getting hit. The easy way to kill them, however, is to get them partially onscreen where you can barely see them but they aren't shooting fireballs. Face the opposite direction and jump straight up. Fire off a couple Luminatio shots at the peak of your jump and you should hear the Bone Pillars barely getting hit. Keep this up until the stack is gone. BLADE MASTER (no drop): Fast creatures. It can come at you in a variety of ways. If it back dashes it will strike forward right after, which you can back dash yourself to avoid. It will also jump towards you sometimes or slide at you occasionally. If the Blade Master is not in an attack animation, it will block your attack automatically making this opponent quite durable - it also has 200 HP. I recommend ending it quick with a couple glyph unions. SKELETON HERO (no drop): Shoots a magic projectile when it swings, which you can duck to avoid. Weak to light and striking, just like everything else in this area. ============================================================================= THINGS TO DO WITH DOUBLE JUMP [JUM1] OVERVIEW: There are a few things you should do once you can double jump. Things to do: Acquire the Fool Ring from the Monastery, rescue Aeon the chef from Minera Prison Island, grab some Rue from the Misty Forest, and explore the remainder of Tymeo Mountains - which will have its own section. Saving is still a great idea often. Before anything, however, buy the battle boots from the item shop. Every bit of strength helps. MONASTARY: Return to the monastery and make your way to E4, where you will find the Fool Ring, which improves luck at the cost of all other stats. MINERA PRISON ISLAND: Start from the left entrance and make your way to the middle. You are a bit tougher than the first time around but you will still die quickly if you are careless. Once you rescue Aeon at B21, check and see if you have salt. If not, set yourself up for max luck. You should be able to have 14 luck with the Sequined Dress, Fool Ring and Lucky Clover. Get Ascia back out again and go to... KALIDUS CHANNEL: You don't need double jump for this, but because you have some decent luck items, now is a good time to return here. Enter from the upper left spot. Go from left to right killing all the needles bobbing in the water. I netted three salt items in five runs from the three screens from the entrance to the save point. There is also a Killer Fish directly below the upper left entrance if you want to try for the Raw Killer Fish drop. Once you have the salt give it to Aeon, now you can by Corn Soup and Minestrone with the potions and meat you already have access too. MISTY FOREST ROAD: Enter from the left and proceed to B7. Don't kill the specters here, double jump from the right ledge and press down+jump to kick off a Specter. Grab the Rue and ticket out of here. Give the Rue and Sage (you should have at least a couple) to Abram. Now, we must return to the Tymeo Mountains which is a longer task than the previous ones. ============================================================================= TYMEO MOUNTAINS REVISITED (TYM2) PREREQUISITES: Intelligence items and another dose of Luminatio. Grando is also useful for some situations. Equipment wise I recommend the Corset Dress, Cabriolet headgear, Magician Ring and Empress Ring. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: I used at least a couple potions here, bringing that all you can carry is always recommended. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Emperor Ring (C23), Crimson Mask (G15), Moon Walkers (F14), Pneuma glyph (G20), Marcel (B25), Ruby (H26), HP Max Up (H26), Heart Max Up (E18), Ignis Glyph OVERVIEW: Starting from the upper left entrance we'll make our way to the remainder of Tymeo Mountain. When you reach E16 you there is a split and you can go either low or high - I recommend low first. Come back via the upper left entrance. Kill the spiders, utilize your new downward kick if you are about to land on one. Two Luminatio hits will kill. When you reach the Cave Troll lure him out and slide under him when he jumps high. It will be a tight squeeze but you should make it. Go back to H8 and jump over the gap instead of going down - unless you haven't activated the teleporter at J7 make sure you do so now. Continue up and to the right, dodge or kill everything in your way. Once you reach E16 go down instead of across the broken bridge to the right, beware the Rock Knights below you however. Don't forget the room to the left at G15, you can grab the Crimson Mask there. If you are using physical weapons go ahead and equip it. If you are primarily using magic such as the fantastic Luminatio, keep the Cabriolet on your head. The Yeti will be below you but just ignore it for now. When you get the camera you can take a picture of it for money later. When you get to the bottom go to the corridor on the right, which happens to be your only option. Once you enter this room don't move forward an inch. Some Nightmares will gallop at you but hold your ground. Break out Grando the ice spell at when you hear galloping fire off four shots. You will kill them before long. Advance forward until you encounter a Fire Demon. He has the same artificial intelligence as the other demons. Before you kill him, absorb the Ignis glyph when he attempts to cast it, then kill him with Grando. Continue to the right and activate the second and final teleporter. You can ticket back to town if you need more health items. Return to this point through the previous teleporter if you go to town. Otherwise, north you go! Go up and to the left before the Nightmares hit you. Magnes to the top and absorb the Pneuma glyph. It may take you a long time because you have to be pixel perfect using Magnes to swing to the edge of the right ledge. Position yourself somewhere between Northwest and West, make sure you are at close to full strength and release. Hold up immediately after launching, you shouldn't have to jump or adjust in any way. When this is done you may want to consider ticketing back and saving because it is not a fun task to repeat. Whether you took a ticket back to town or warped back, you should now go East from the I21 location. Stick to the left entrance edge and kill the Nightmares with Grando again. In the next room there are two Fire Demons but you can just run past, sliding through the second one before he fully materializes. There are a couple more skull spiders in the next room, one above and below you so be careful. Luminatio should do the job. Go up a little more and acquire the HP Max Up at H26. There is a breakable to the right of the HP Max Up with a Ruby, which you'll need to complete the quest for Laura. Go left and up the vertical hall with the Winged Guards, and definitely save at E23. Continue Upwards and avoid or kill the crow. Jump over the bridge and save Marcel. Exit to the right, go back to the village and save. Talk to Marcel to get his camera, and then to Laura to complete her quest and give you access to more accessories. Return from the same exit at the upper right when you are ready. Going left from C24, you will be gunning for the Emperor ring at C23, Heart Max Up at E18, and finding another cave troll in the vicinity of C21 to take a picture of. Sometimes he just stands there, jump close to him until you are on the same parallel level and use the camera. It will make a sound that sounds like success and you will get photo 1. Go down to D20 and go to the right. There may be some Scarecrows bouncing around but they are pretty easy to handle with any attack. When you reach the dead end at C23, duck near the ledge up there, where you will acquire the Emperor Ring. Any time you need to use a health item, equip the Emperor Ring and use it. This will help you conserve those items. Continue to the left and feel free to use up hearts on enemies you've dealt with before. Grando and Luminatio should still be your bread and butter. Work your way underground until you get to E18 where the Heart Max Up is. Once you get this, your work here is done unless you want to take a picture of that Yeti at H16. Use a ticket and go back to the village. One more backtracking task now that you have Ignis. Go back to the Monastery. Go back to F2 and use Ignis to destroy all the blocks, which is easy with an Ignis glyph union. Now destroy all the blocks. It is actually possible to do this with Luminatio by double jumping and getting very lucky, but I haven't been able to reproduce it since my first playthrough. Once all the blocks are destroyed you will get the Justice Ring - be aware it could take you ten minutes. Grando is good for the blocks at the end. Note that the Justice Ring only increases strength... And slowly, +1 STR for every ~3000 kills. This FAQ assumes you don't farm kills to power the ring up. TYMEO MOUNTAINS MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: BOULDERS: Jump over them, preferably use the branches to avoid them completely. OWL: Weak to slashing, Ascia works great due to their swooping motion. I used Luminatio with INT boosting items however. Either way they have medium HP (69) but do get knocked back when hit. YETI: Once you attack the Yeti, it will run away. Don't worry about killing it. Later, take a picture of it for money if you want. FIRE DEMON: Weak to ice attacks such as Grando. If this guy attempts to cast, simply absorb his glyph - which is what you should do to get the Ignis glyph anyway. ============================================================================= SOMNUS REEF (SOM1) PREREQUISITES: You should have 248 max hitpoints, 150 max magic, and 120 max hearts, otherwise you missed something and should take the time to find whatever you missed. Equipment wise, I recommend the same intelligence boosting equipment (Corset Dress, Cabriolet headgear, Magician Ring and Empress Ring), but instead of Luminatio, Ignis is the glyph of choice. For the boss, it is best to have the Crimson Mask, Reinforced Suit (which you will find later), Battle Boots (from Jacob), the Strength Ring, the Justice Ring, and the old Arcus Glyph (although Vol Arcus works well when you find it too. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: Potions, meat, minestrone and corn soup are all recommended. I ended up using all my potions and meat before the boss, and some of more meat and potions during the boss battle. I also forgot to utilize the Emperor Ring to increase the power however, so you will probably be able to get by with less. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Heart Max Up at L8, MP Max Up at I10, HP Max Up at J19, Anna at G5, Serge at B15, Reinforced Suit at H8. OVERVIEW: You will start on the upper left portion of the map. Key stopping points include the MP Max Up at I10, Anna in a breakable wall at G5, and then the Heart Max Up at L8. After the save point in the lower middle section is a boss, after which you will find the HP Max Up at J19, and finally Serge in the breakable wall at B15 before exiting. After entering the Somnus Reef, head east. Blast your way through the Merman and Balloons, and don't wait too long because there is a Decararbia roaming around and will get in your face quickly if you don't move. It is actually better just to run forward and jump into the water and deal with this thing quickly. In the next room you will encounter a new enemy, the Edimmu. It is fairly easy to kill with Ignis, but the Balloons and another Decararbia makes things annoying. You can take a hit or two and plow them, or fight it out... and probably take a hit or two anyway. Activate the teleporter at B7 before going down to the next area. There is a random treasure on the right and a Sea Demon. At the bottom of this vertical hall there is $2000 and another Sea Demon, which I opted to skip. Go to the right and you'll encounter more of the same. Keep a lookout for rare treasure - I found a Tasty Meat on my first run luckily, which is needed for a quest that nets you better consumable health items. There isn't a whole lot that will surprise you in the next three zones just rush through and use health consumables as necessary. Remember to pick up the MP Max Up at I10, the Reinforced Suit at H8, which also happens to be close to Anna through the breakable wall at G5. There will be a couple rooms where you will encounter the enemy known as Saint Elmo. With your equipment, you should be able to destroy these in one Ignis shot. Once you make it to the teleporter at K6, I recommend ticketing out and restocking on health items (I went through almost all my meat and potions here). Once you are ready, reenter the Somnus Reef and go back to the original teleporter and enter it. Go east, but don't forget the Heart Max Up near the bottom at L8. Save at the save point, and then equip the following: Head: Crimson Mask Body: Reinforced Suit Legs: Battle Boots Accessory 1: Strength Ring Accessory 2: Justice Ring (even if it gives you only +1 STR) Glyph 1: Arcus Glyph 2: Arcus You can also use Vol Arcus in two different slots via the glyph sleeve to switch to when the situation presents itself (when Rusalka is at a 45 angle from you). BOSS - RUSALKA: Generally, two hits will kill you. I ate up almost all my meat and potions (but no other food) during this battle. I preferred Arcus even over Vol Arcus (if you choose to get it). Essentially get close enough to Rusalka to get her on the screen and start firing away. She'll get close to and stop for a moment, at which point I recommend backing off. Two attacks you are likely to encounter are the hair snap (which comes out fast), and the wave slash - where she cocks her hand back and slaps forward, which has a longer range. Backdash can help here for either attack, but the wave slash may connect anyway. Once you get cornered, double jump over her and continue to shoot arrows from a distance. At some point, maybe even at the beginning of the battle, Rusalka will summon some stalagmites from the ceiling which can hit you. After that they serve has a shield for her final attack, where she yells and summons a mighty wave in the background. If you don't run under the stalagmites summoned earlier, you will die. The big rock shields are also destroyable, which isn't a big deal as long as you have one behind you at all times. Keep firing away with Arcus, and back away half the screen when she flows towards you and slows to a stop. She shouldn't last much longer than five minutes. After she falls, go back to the intelligence equipment setup with Ignis as the primary glyphs. Don't forget to save in the previous screen. If you have less than ten consumable health items I recommend stocking up on more back at the Village. Return to the Boss room and continue to the East. When you enter a larger sea cavern, you will run into more Saint Elmos, which you can kill in one Ignis shot or simply avoid. Continue to the right. There are a couple treasure chests in the lower section guarded by a Edimmu. Unless you notice them sparkling (a rare treasure) it probably isn't worth the trouble to open them. At J19 you will get an HP Max Up, which will fully heal you if you were damaged. Exit J19 and swim up. There will be three more Decarabias which should fall easy to the Ignis glyph. Go up, and then to the left. There will be a Edimmu in your face which you may be able to slide under, if not you will get damaged and poisoned. Shouldn't be a big issue since Shanoa should have plenty of health items. Continue without killing it - no items or EXP. More of the same here, Decarabias crawling around making Shanoa's life annoying. Ignis saves the day again since that glyph can hit things above you. Continue up. When you reach C16, go up and to the room on your left to save Serge at B15. You won't be able to do anything with Anna and Serge at the moment until you rescue their mom. Once he is saved go to the right while avoiding the Saint Elmos. There are a flew Edimmus below you swimming around but they can't get out of the water. Once you exit, go back to town, restock on consumables and save. You will need Vol Ascia for later, so return to the Somnus Reef at the this exit and grab Vol Ascia at C19. It is somewhat hard to absorb with all the enemies so I recommend saving first to be safe. SOMNUS REEF MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: Balloon ( ): Ignis will dispose of this enemy quickly enough - four hits at this point of the game. The spores that are released may block your shots so try to be quick about it. Ascia works well due to balloons slashing weakness and the angle of the axe arc. Merman 42 ( ): Tougher than the original Merman.... Still shoots fire. Blast it quickly with Ignis (or your weapon of choice) and move on. Decarabia ( ): Crawls along the floors and walls. It will fall quickly to Ignis, but its mass can be quite a hindrance to Shanoa's quest. Edimmu ( ): Flows around annoying you. Blast it in the face with whatever glyph you have, probably Ignis or Axcia. Saint Elmo ( ): These come from the edges of the screen and respawn indefinitely. With the equipment setup you have currently, one Ignis will kill one of these. If they stop moving they are probably homing in on you, and will zoom at you at an increased speed. ============================================================================= GIANTS DWELLING (GIA1) PREREQUISITES: Here I would advise to fall back on the usual intelligence setup with Ignis as your primary glyph. Luminatio also works well here, most enemies are weak to light and/or fire. Vol Ascia is needed for the boss, found in the Somnus Reef. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: All you can eat menu again. Potions, meat, minestrone and corn soup are all fantastic. I used........ Also bring plenty of uncurse potions for the Ectoplasms. I ended up using all my potions and meat. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Daniela at C8 OVERVIEW: You'll start on the West end and progress to the right. A save point and a villager - Daniela - are near the beginning. Other than that, it is pretty much a straight shot East until you reach the boss and get another piece of Dominus. Keep in mind however there are no teleporters, so it is pretty much a straight shot through this zone without going back for consumable items. After entering the Giant's Dwelling, go right. There will be a room with ectoplasms floating around and a big Skeleton Beast. The beast has an item you may want later, the Barbarian Helm which adds +5 to strength, but it is a very difficult drop with the luck items you have at the moment. I would advise that you slide into the Skeleton Beast and after taking damage, immediately slide again to get by him with minimal hassle. The Ectoplasms you can easily run or slide under, just don't jump. In the next room is your first Ladycat, which you should kill with a Ignis Union easily. There is a breakable bring on the upper left that will grant you the Temperance Ring, which actually is only marginally useful compared to the Empress and Magician Rings you have currently. I'd say don't bother equipping it, maximum damage is more important in this author's opinion. Continue to the right. This is a bigger room which has ectoplasms, a Ladycat and a couple new enemies - automation ZX26 and a Miss Murder. The Miss murder is invisible but luckily has a very slow attack with her scissors. Avoid (or kill) them all the enemies and progress up and to the left to get to the save point at C5. If you want Vol Falcis from the Miss Murder you can kill her over and over while retreating to the save room to heal. Either way, after saving head right while avoiding the ectoplasms. You may as well grab the Caprine since it is on the way but you will probably never wear it. In the upper right is the villager Daniela at C8, which has some good stuff for you later. Go back out, down and head right. In the next room you will encounter a Curse Diva. She will go down quick to Ignis before doing anything if Shanoa is quick enough. If the Curse Diva attacks, blue flames will appear and rain downward. Continue outside to the east for another Curse Diva and Ladycat, both of which are easy to kill with Ignis (four hits each about). In the next room you will find an assortment of zombies and skeletons that await you in graves. Once again Ignis saves the day with its directional attack. Double jump on the ledge in the upper right before continuing and duck to reveal some black drops in a secret chest (D12). Upon reentering the structure at D13, there will be an Automation ZX26 that Shanoa can kill or jump over. The next room is tough - it has a mixed bag of enemies including Ladycats, Curse Divas, and a Miss Murder. Play at safe and destroy them instead of rushing past. In the next room is a Skeleton Beast, which you can slide through and take a hit like the first one, or kill it with Ignis since there are no Ectoplasms to disrupt your jumping. If you can have multiple fireballs hitting per cast consistently, Shanoa can drop the beast well before it corners you. In the next room, stay low and go right if you want the Vol Secare glyph at D20, a better version of your sword glyph. One advantage of taking the thirty seconds to do this is, upon reentering, to kill some of the Ladycats above you with Ignis without fear of retaliation. Work your way up killing enemies as they become aggressive, and use the Ignis glyph if you become overwhelmed. The next room is full of ectoplasms, so take it slow with Ignis or Luminatio to make it by unscathed. There is one final ectoplasm guarding a save point in a vertical room. After saving lies Goliath, so equip the following before proceeding just like with the previous boss. Head: Crimson Mask Body: Reinforced Suit Legs: Battle Boots Accessory 1: Strength Ring Accessory 2: Justice Ring or Temperance Glyph 1: Vol Ascia Glyph 2: Vol Ascia BOSS - GOLIATH: Weak only to slashing, Shanoa ought to get to work with on this boss with Vol Ascia. Typically it will be open to retaliation after any of its attacks, but you should be firing off axes any time it isn't attacking you. If you attack from the ground, the axes you throw will hit Goliath twice. The most common attack from this boss is the windup punch. Goliath will lean his torso back and start winding it's arm, then pound it forward causing the ground to spike up in your direction. Double jump backwards as far as you can once you see this start to happen, the reach of the spikes are half a screen long. Another common attack is the spring attack, where Goliath crouches briefly and jumps towards Shanoa. Dodge this by sliding under him or risk getting hit by the aftershock. Soon in the battle Goliath will strike the ceiling, causing the ceiling to collapse with wood. Dodge them while making your way to one of the edges of the room, since the wood won't fall down there. If a wood piece threatens you, throwing an axe will destroy these collapsing beams as well. Getting hit is no catastrophe, but will result in a little over 100 damage. Later in the battle, Goliath will crouch as though he is going to jump at you, but don't get near him until he actually leaps, or he will grab Shanoa. The attack that is most dangerous, however, is the death march. Goliath will stomp towards you at a faster speed than he usually walks, and if you get cornered he will pummel you to death with little invincible time in between hits. What Shanoa must do is walk forward to where the most recent Goliath's stomp lands and duck right in front of it. If done correctly Goliath will step right over Shanoa doing no damage. If Shanoa gets hit she will lose a significant chunk of life, about 180 damage. Failure to at least attempt oing under the Goliath during this march will result in almost certain death from his fist when Shanoa gets backed up against the wall. This battle is somewhat length (five minutes) and required the equivalent of three potions to complete from me. After defeating Goliath, talk to Albus and absorb the Dominus Anger glyph. Before moving on, talk to Daniela and make sure you have the Sketchbook. It wouldn't hurt to do her first quest as well, which is quite easy. Go back to the Lighthouse and use the elevator and later Magnes to reach the top of the Lighthouse, then use the Lighthouse to get the Lighthouse Art. Return to Daniela and receive her next quest - 'Important Resting Place'. Now you can proceed to the Tristiss Pass. GIANTS DWELLING MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: ECTOPLASM (Uncurse Potion): Flies around erratically, weak to light (your Luminatio glyph). If it hits you, your magic will drain via curse, so make sure you have uncurse potions SKELETON BEAST (Barbarian Helm): Tough dude to take down. At this point it is probably best to try and slide past it while taking a hit or two, but once you get some more luck items it is probably worth it to try and farm this guy for the helmet. Light and Fire are his weakness, glyph unions of either can do a lot of damage. When he leans back to strike, double jump straight up. LADYCAT: ( ) These are actually light resistant, so break out Ignis to light them up. AUTOMATION ZX26 ( ): not much hit points, but it is easier to jump over them. MISS MURDER ( ): Weak to light, but with only 66 hitpoints you can probably use most glyphs just fine. Backdash or jump over her scissors and strike back with whatever you have. CURSE DIVA ( ): Four Ignis shots to kill as she is weak to fire. If she gets off her blue flame attack, they tend to rain straight down so don't be under her when this happens. ============================================================================= TRISTIS PASS (TRI1) PREREQUISITES: Strength Ring (for Vol Ascia) and Magician ring (for Ignis), as well as the relevant intelligence and strength builds that you should have had previously. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: Everything you can carry, which at this point should include potions, meat, minestrone and corn soup. I used all my potions, meat and some corn soup with the Emperor Ring (for double healing) without having to return to the village for more health items. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Heart Max Up at N22, HP Max Up at P16, MP Max Up at C3, Onyx at O19, Chariot Ring at G11. If you don't three silver yet for Eugen's quest, you can exit and reenter at the beginning to search for silver at M30, which is a common treasure. Later, you may want to farm the same treasure for the Traver's Hat or a Diamond once you have the Treasure Hat to help rare treasure appear. Waterfall Art for Daniella at Q22, the Inire Pecunia glyph at D5 and the Vol Grando glyph at L21 are also all necessary. The Thunder Demon encountered later in the area has Fulgur which Shanoa can absorb will the demon is attempting to cast it. OVERVIEW: Shanoa will make her way to the waterfall a third of the way through the area, and after drawing a picture for a quest and rescuing Irina, you will have the option of ticketing to town and taking care of a few loose ends. After these are taken care of, continue back to Tristis Pass and navigate the fairly linear area until reaching the western exit. You should retain the strength setup from the Goliath Boss battle for the first section. Enter from the East entrance and move West. There will be some Arachne spiders Balloons. There is also a random treasure here where you can grab some silver if you don't have three ore already, and perhaps later to get the Travelers Hat. Continue West to a broken bridge and a Balloon, jump over the bridge and activate the teleporter at L27. Now go down and avoid all the enemies, including the lizard which is a pain to kill. At O29 on the right is a save point which I recommend using. Continue to drop down ignoring the enemies and go to the room to the left. Now switch to the intelligence setup if you intend to fight the next two Giant Skeletons: Head: Garbo Hat Body: Corset Dress Legs: (any) Accessory 1: Magician Ring Accessory 2: Empress Ring Glyph 1: Ignis Glyph 2: Ignis You can kill The Giant Skeletons (same as the boss) with an intelligence setup and some well placed Ignis shots, or you can slide into them giving Shanoa temporary invincibility and sliding away. This works on both Skeletons but you have to be fast. The treasure here is actually a Mimic which is tough to dodge and kill, especially if the two Giant Skeletons are alive. Simply walk by the treasure without opening it. The second skeleton you can double jump over as it will bend over backward and amble towards you. In the next room is the Tristis waterfall at Q22. Use your sketchbook to get the art for Daniela. Now jump up on the platforms and make your way to the source of the ice - Vol Grando. This is fairly easy to absorb after flinging yourself as hard as you can with Magnes. When coming down the waterfall hold left and jump at the right moment to get the Heart Max Up at N22. A screen lower is a breakable wall with Irina (which will open up her quests as well as her children's quests). Below that is a random treasure. If Shanoa crouches at the waterfall, it will reveal a secret chest with the Lover's Ring. At this point I you can use a ticket and go to town to clean up some loose ends (search for LOO2). Once you are finished with these loose ends, or if you feel like doing them later, progress to the left. If you decide not to do the loose ends, I still recommend backtracking to the save point because the next area is dangerous. Equip Magnes for moving on. The next room has a plethora of Medusa Heads and bats with a line of spikes across the bottom. Use Magnes to swing westward, hopefully not getting nailed by anything that results in a spiky death for Shanoa. Wait for the first two-three enemies to pass by before attempting. Magnes does offer Shanoa some maneuverability but this mostly comes down to luck to get by. Pull Shanoa back to the Southeast and launcher her to the upper left three times to get by this hallway. Generally every attempt out of four will result in success. Once you go up to the next area, an Armored Beast will be directly to your left. If you get on the ledge to the upper right, none of the Beast's attacks can hit you. Kill it at your leisure with Ignis or Vol Ascia. Go to the next room to the left and get the treasure for a Max HP Up at P16. Killing the dragon is optional. Go back to the right and double jump over the armored beast (this particular ledge doesn't afford the same protection) and stomp downward if necessary. The vertical hallway to the right as a bunch of ectoplasms, dispose of them from below safely with Luminatio. There is a breakable wall here with an Onyx - which combined with a diamond (rare treasure drop in the Tristis Pass) will complete Laura's third quest that will ultimately help magic damage output. Continue up and go left. You will encounter a Lizardman on the bridge with a random treasure. Jump over the Lizardman but beware the respawning Altairs flying from left to right. They will swoop in on you as they close in, so jump over them when this happens. Continue up, shooting the Altairs as needed while avoiding the lizards. After the third Lizardman, there will be a save point on the left. After saving, continue up and in the next vertical area, ignoring the white dragon and Arachnes on the right. There will be a teleporter to the right. After this is activated, you have the option of going back to the village restocking on health consumables. Go left. Shanoa will emerge back outside. There are two random treasures that may be worth grabbing if either is rare. Go up and to the left, beware the Balloon and Owls. The Owls you can farm at this point which will result in a glyph to absorb which will help Shanoa with a quest from Serge. Lure the Lizardman down, and kill him from below as he strikes foolishly into the air (he can't seem to drop down a floor). Continue to the next area. Here there will be more Owls and a Thunder Demon. Be sure to absorb its glyph Fulgor as it is casting it before killing it with Luminatio. The Chariot Ring is at G11 underground -which is a great compliment to the strength ring - below Vol Hasta, the lance glyph. If you triggered Anna's first quest, you will also find Tom the cat here in one of the tree branches with all the owls. Come back for the cat later if you haven't. The next area just jump past the owls and the Thunder Demon, which Shanoa can run through if she doesn't hesitate. There are some random treasures here as well. In the next area, You can gun it for the exit ignoring the Lizardman and the owls and return for the MP up at C3 and the money glyph (Inire Pecunia), or get them now. An advantage to exiting the area first is that when Shanoa returns, she can use a ticket to get back to town. The Lizardman is harder to avoid, lure it out of the cave and then jump over it. Ignis glyph unions can work well here with all the Owls flying around. Getting out is a bit harder, you can try to kill the Lizardman or accept a hit and run past it. Ignore all the owls when running for the exit. Save at the village and restock on health consumables. TRISTISS PASS MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: ARACHNE ( ): Runs around on the ground, weak to slashing and fire. Will poison you if it touches you. It will occasionally launch some green goo at you in an arch, which you may never see happen if Shanoa is quick to kill. You can also double jump over them though they may take a short leap backward when Shanoa jumps. GIANT SKELETON ( ): Break out Ignis or Luminatio and chisel away at his HP. If he bends over and comes at you quick double jump over this guy. You can also slide into it, take a hit, and keep sliding to get by him quickly. MIMIC ( ): A monster disguised as a treasure chest. It slides across the ground but will over extend if you jump over it. Easier to flee than to kill it as it has no weaknesses and a sizable chunk of HP, but if you must kill one I recommend glyphs that don't require Shanoa to be on the same horizontal level as the Mimic, such as Luminatio. LIZARDMAN (???, ????): These guys are very annoying to kill, perhaps even more so than a Mimic. They only will take damage if they are charging at you, otherwise Shanoa's attack, even magical in nature, will be blocked by their shield. It is advisable to simply avoid these enemies. You can attack from a different horizontal plane as well. If a lizardman rushes you, simply jump over the reptile. Weak to slashing and fire, so Ignis or Vol Ascia will work well here. ARMORED BEAST (????): Weak to fire and slashing with a moderate amount of HP. It will occasionally leap at Shanoa, slide under to avoid. If you get on a ledge above this beast you can kill it without fear of retaliation. ALTAIR ( ): Flies horizontally from left to right or right to left, spawning from the side of the screen that Shanoa is farther away from. Easy to kill with fire or slashing. If this eagle-like creature slows to a stop, it is about to swoop in on Shanoa so be prepared to jump. THUNDER DEMON (Fulgur): When the Thunder Demon is casting, Shanoa can absorb its glyph netting you with Fulgor and also preventing damage from coming her way. Same patterns as the other demons, just dodge its kicks and kill it with Luminatio, which it is weak to. ============================================================================= THINGS TO DO WITH THE TREASURE HAT (HAT1) TRISTIS PASS Return to town and talk to Anna to receive your first quest from her if you haven't done so already. Now go to the enter the Tristis Pass from the left entrance and venture to E12 to find Tom. Return Tom to Anna to net some Black Drops, and then activate her second quest - Mice Make For Good Eats. After that is done, talk to Daniela and give her the Waterfall Art (also found in the Tristis Pass at Q22 if you haven't drawn it already) and she will give you the Treasure Hat. Now we are gonna do some treasure hunting. Equip the Treasure Hat and go back to the Kalidus Channel. KALIDUS CHANNEL: First we need a couple gold rings if you don't have any, so make sure you have the Treasure Hat on. Luck equipment also helps but not much with treasure, it is up to you if you want to sacrifice power for luck. A luck setup is recommended especially if you haven't completed Aeon's second quest (I've Never Eaten That) and don't have the Raw Killer Fish item to give him. Enter the Kalidus channel from the lower left and go to the Sunken Ship to the lower right. Kill anything in your way, especially the Killer Fish if you see any if you need the Raw Killer Fish item. In the bowels of the Sunken Ship are three random treasures. Now that you have the treasure hat, rare treasure will appear twice as often, and this will ultimately help you get those Gold Rings. Grab the mouse from the sunken ship as well. Here is a sample setup for both Raw Killer Fish and making rare treasures appear. Helm: Treasure Hat Body: Sequined Dress Boots: any Accessory 1: Fool Ring Accessory 2: Lucky Clover With two gold rings, farming gold is much easier. When you get the gold increasing glyph later in the Tristis Pass, the income gets even better. You can farm gold anywhere there is a candle as long as you are maxed out on hearts, but the best place is in the Tymeo Mountains at J8. Once you come back to this place, you can stomp on the candle repeatedly for quick cash. Once you have two gold rings and the Raw Killer Fish (or you can wait like I did, for better luck equipment such as the Ribbon when attempting to obtain the Raw Killer Fish), the next treasure you want is the Blow Ring and five pieces of Cashmere Thread. Give the mouse to Anna and receive some Heart Earrings and activate her final quest - Tom and Jewelry. Now go back to the Misty Forest Road. MISTY FOREST ROAD With the same equipment setup from above, start from the left exit and make your way right. Now that you have double jump it should be easier to run by enemies. At C9 there will be a hopefully rare chest with either cashmere or a blow ring. Either way, teleport out with a ticket and come back until you get what you need. Once you have five cashmere threads you can complete Monica's quest and unlock the best dresses from Jacob. Now to complete Anna's final quest, Tom and Jewelry, which will net you a fantastic luck item. Be sure you still have the Treasure hat on and return to the Tymeo Mountains. TYMEO MOUNTAINS Enter from the upper right entrance. At D21 and D22 are two random treasures. The item you are looking for is Chrysoberyl for Anna. Fight your way through the crows and skeletons and open those treasures. If you don't get the Chrysoberyl, use a magical ticket and try again. It took me six attempts before I got what Anna needed. Once you return the Chrysoberyl to Anna, talk to Laura, and then Anna again, you will receive the Ribbon. The Ribbon will in turn make getting the raw killer fish much easier back at the Kalidus Channel. KALIDUS CHANNEL Make sure you have the best luck equipment on such as the fool ring, clover and ribbon and enter the Channel again from the upper left. You can achieve 24 luck with these items and the Sequined Dress. Drop into the water and kill the Killer Fish at C4 until you get the raw killer fish for Aeon to complete I've Never Eaten That, which will give you access to more health consumables from Jacob. It took me about ten minutes of farming Killer Fish before I got their drop. Activate Aeon's final quest, which is Can't Cook Without Ingredients. Now go to the Somnus Reef (with the Treasure Hat back on). SOMNUS REEF Enter the reef from the upper right entrance and make your way to F16. Hopefully you'll obtain the Tasty Meat for Aeon sooner rather than later, use a ticket if you don't get the right item. I was lucky enough to get the Tasty Meat on the first run through the Somnus Reef, but I imagine it shouldn't take more than ten to fifteen minutes. After giving the meat to Aeon, you'll have access to Meat, Potions, Corn Soup, Minestrone, Ramen Noodles, Killer Fish BBQ, Ramen and Thick Steak. Between all those consumables and an infinite source of gold, Shanoa pretty much has zero excuse for dying (except for certain bosses). We are almost done with the side quests - go back to the village and talk to Laura to receive her third quest. Now go to the Tristis Pass again if you don't already have a diamond. TRISTIS PASS You should already have Onyx from O19 at the breakable wall, but if you don't start from the right entrance and use the teleporter at L27 to reach that area quickly. For the diamond, enter from the right entrance again with the Treasure Hat on and farm the random treasure at M30 for a diamond. The travelers hat is also a decent find if you happen to get one. Return the Onyx and Diamond to Laura to end A Heartwarming Accessory which will give Shanoa access to good intelligence improving equipment for her head. Go back to Wygol Village. WYGOL VILLAGE With all those quests out of the way, Shanoa can finally get some shopping done. Buy the following items: (which shouldn't be hard with all the money that you can get with the gold rings). Max out on all the consumables you have access too. Additionally, you can grab all five pins and two copies of each ring (Onyx, Diamond, Emerald, Sapphire and Ruby), the Wedding Dress, Silver Leggings. Now we can move on to the Oblivion Ridge. The equipment isn't nearly as important as the consumable health items however, I ended up not even using it, but I bought it since gold was so plentiful. When farming for gold, you shouldn't need more than 1,500,000 gold to last you for all the consumable items throughout the game, but you should max out on gold eventually at 99,999,99 so the Miser Ring will be fully powered when you obtain it. ============================================================================= OBLIVION RIDGE (OBL1) PREREQUISITES: The Ignis glyph is still the way to go with the following equipment: the Traveler's Hat, Corset Dress, Empress Ring and Magicians Ring for maximum intelligence. Vol Grando is the best glyph against the boss Gravedorcus. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: I would bring everything that you can carry, I ended up eating all the Minestrone, Corn Soup and potions on the boss battle alone. CRITICAL PICKUPS: The Hermit Ring at B2 and Sapiens Fio at B14 OVERVIEW: The Oblivion Ridge is a relatively small area. Shanoa will start from the right and make her way to the left until she runs into a save point. A boss battle is nearby halfway through the area, followed by more enemies in a straight run five more screens to the West. Starting from the right, you'll encounter Lizardmen, a Skeleton Beast, and Altairs that occasionally drop Flea men. Advance to the left and blast the first Lizardman point blank with Ignis before the Altairs show up. After that there is a Skeleton Beast, which you can stick around and kill (possibly with some Ignis unions) or slide into it and take a hit, and then slide past it. If you use the Ignis Union you can back dash immediately so Shanoa doesn't remain immobile. In the middle of this screen is a Werewolf, which is dangerous considering all the Altairs swooping around. Kill it with a couple Ignis unions or take a hit and keep running. As long as you keep moving left without dancing around too much, Shanoa won't take too many hits (maybe go through ten health consumables.) In the next area you can drop down and go to the area to the right and save at C16. Once that is done go back out where more Altairs are flying around. The glyph Sapiens Fio is at B14, which requires a double jump - downward stomp on one of the Altairs to reach. Blast the statue and quickly absorb the glyph before an Altair or Flea man ruins Shanoa's day. Go back and save while swapping Ignis with Vol Grando. BOSS - GRAVEDORCUS: This guy usually rooms around underground. Activate your new glyph Sapiens Fio and blast away with Vol Grando. With the intellect boost from that glyph, you can easily achieve 80+ damage. The boss will fall in about fifty hits. Any time you see dust appearing under you get out of the way. Sometimes Gravedorcus will jump out of the sand and arc over Shanoa, so don't jump when this happens. Occasionally this boss will spit out spikey balls which can also be destroyed with Vol Grando. If you a fin approaching you, run backwards until Gravedorcus leaps over you (the ceiling is too low to jump over this attack). One attack you may see occasionally is the poison gas cloud - drink the anti venom if this nails Shanoa. Finally, beware the blocks that come out from time to time as Gravedorcus will occasionally smash them in your direction, which isn't easy to dodge. The union glyph with Vol Grando takes too long and isn't cancelable, so don't use it. On the same vain, be cognizant of your MP usage, generally you will be almost out of magic after four consecutive Vol Grando volleys. This isn't an easy fight by any means, but with all the consumable items you have access too, you should be able to win this war of attrition. With your health at a max of 288, Shanoa can survive two hits. After the boss is dead, return to the save point or use a magical ticket if you want to replenish your consumable health items. After the boss, go back to using Ignis as your primary glyph but keep using Sapiens Fio at all times to boost your intelligence. The next room has a new enemy that looks like a plant shooting spores called a Stone Rose as well as another Lizardman and Werewolf. Use union glyphs to take care of the situation quickly if you have the hearts. Beware if the Lizardman hits Shanoa it may knock her back into the boss room. There is a breakable wall on the left end of this room at C9 if you still need one for Laura's third quest. The next area is more of the same, a bunch of Werewolves and Lizardmen, as well an Armored Beast. Ignis will mess your enemies up quickly. If you are in danger of taking a hit you can double jump over most attacks, and Shanoa can do the downward stomp to avoid landing on an enemy. Keep moving West until you reach the chapel and Shanoa will run into Albus. After a short scene, don't forget there is a breakable wall to the left with the Hermit Ring, which you should equip over the Empress Ring. Ticket back to town, restock on consumables and save, then have a chat with Barlowe. He will direct you to Argila Swamp. OBLIVION RIDGE MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES FLEA MAN ( ): They hop around erratically but are quite easy to deal with using most glyphs including Ignis. They do pack a punch however, they can hit for over 100 HP. ALTAIR ( ): some of these will fly by and drop a Flea Man, the other ones swoop in on Shanoa. You can either jump over them when they swoop, or slide under which is usually a better option. Ignis or a slashing weapon seem to work well if you want to kill one. WEREWOLF ( ): This guy is also weak to fire. He is pretty fast so some Union Glyphs with Ignis is a good way to take care of this guy quickly if you don't have room to double jump over him. Don't forget you can interrupt your union glyph by backdashing without sacrificing any damage output. STONE ROSE ( ): Once again Ignis is the glyph to use. Blasting the plant about four times with Sapiens Fio will do the job, or using a Ignis union is a good way to kill it and the spores that it spits out. ============================================================================= ARGILA SWAMP (ARG1) PREREQUISITES: Ignis again as the primary glyph with the intelligence setup described for the Oblivion Ridge - the Traveler's Hat, Corset Dress, Hermit Ring (instead of the Empress Ring) and of course the Magicians Ring. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: I ate a lot of Minestrone and Corn Soup here, but not much else. CRITICAL PICKUPS: None. OVERVIEW: A straight shot from right to left with many enemies in the way. With all the consumables you have, this should still be a breeze. Shanoa will enter the swamp from the right. Don't forget to activate the intelligence glyph Sapiens Fio. Her first opponent will be a Jersey Devil, which flies around and breathes fire. Jump up and blast it and move on. There will be more Devils and the ground will become swampy, which constrains Shanoa's movement. Using up your hearts for Ignis Unions is recommended while they are still grounded. There will also be a man-creature called a Chosen Une, which is easy to handle with Ignis. Farther left are more Chosen Une's and a Une-like enemy called a Mandragora. The Mandragoras self destruct but can catch Shanoa in their sacrifice, so kill it fast with Ignis or be far away when it screams. There will be an Owl Knight on the next screen ready to meet Shanoa. It is fire resistant, so switch to a glyph like Vol Grando if you wish to kill it. The swamp will make backdashing less viable, so either duck or jump over its attacks. More Chosen Unes will be in your way as you continue left. Jump over them (stomp downward if one appears below you) or fire away with Ignis. The final hall has the most enemies of all sorts. Power through it using Ignis primarily (accept for the Owl Knights, of which there are three evenly spaced out). There will be some Mandragoras in the swamps near the beginning, a Jersey Devil in the middle and plenty of Stone Roses close to the end. Use up any remaining hearts here. Shanoa is likely to take some damage so use the consumables as needed. Once you escape the swamp, go back to the village, restock on consumables and save. ARGILA SWAMP MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES JERSEY DEVIL ( ): Starts out on the ground and leaps into the air. It is weak to Ignis and slashing, but with the equipment you have Ignis is the better bet. This beast will occasionally spit fire at Shanoa if you jump close. If you see or hear it flap it's wings three times, it is about to swoop at Shanoa incredibly fast, so be prepared to double jump. CHOSEN UNE ( ): Blast this guy point blank with Ignis (its weakness) for best results. You can also simply double jump over this enemy. MANDRAGORA ( ): This Une-like creature simply self destructs after emerging from the ground. Kill it quickly or don't be near it when it screams. OWL KNIGHT ( ): These guys sport an owl on their shoulder which is easy to kill. The Knight itself however is resistant to fire, so either jump over him or use a different glyph. The Owl Knight will telegraph its attack, which is a short ranged swing of its sword which is possible to duck under. ============================================================================= MYSTERY MANOR (MYS1) PREREQUISITES: Intellect setup as before (the Traveler's Hat, Corset Dress, Hermit Ring Magician Ring) and Vol Luminatio (which Shanoa will acquire soon) for most enemies accept the White Fomors. Sapiens Fio should be active at all times. Make sure you also have obtained all the HP Max Upgrades, putting your HP at 288. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: I used about half of all the consumables I had here, most of them (especially the thick steak) on Albus. After restocking, I used about a third of all my consumables on Barlowe. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Vol Luminatio from a new enemy called a White Fomor that flies around, Vol Umbra from the dark room at D2, Dominus Agony from Albus at D10 OVERVIEW: The last area before Dracula's castle. Shanoa will venture into the manor and fight her way through some enemies new and old until she reaches a save point. Afterword she will obtain Vol Umbra which will be used against Albus to end him. Shanoa will be challenged immediately upon entering the area by a White Fomor and a Mad Butcher. Stay still and let the White Fomor cast Vol Luminatio and absorb it, the Mad Butcher won't attack if it isn't provoked. Once that is done you can kill the enemies or double jump over the butcher and keep moving. In the next room is a single Fleaman which is easily disposed of. After the Fleaman, the next area is full of Mad Butchers. They are easy to avoid completely, but are also killable with four Vol Luminatio shots per butcher. Be aware they like to sprint off the ledges, so watch out for them above you. There is a Mimic (fake treasure chest) in the middle, just ignore it and jump up on the ledges. Continue up and to the left. In this hall of the manor is a White Fomor and an Evil Force. The Evil Force is easily killed by four Vol Luminatio shots, and the Fomor you can run past or kill with Ignis. The following room is somewhat difficult. You will be immediately engaged by an Evil Force on your horizontal axis, and a couple White Fomors flying around. The problem here is that the Evil Force demands your attention while the White Fomors fire away at Shanoa with their Luminatio glyph. You will probably hit a couple times here, dispose of the Evil Force and sprint onwards. Go down and to the left unless you want to grab the gold ore at C9 or Ink the cat at B6. Once you drop down to the next area you will encounter two White Fomors. Blast them out of your way and move to the right in order to save, which is insurance against the spikes when you go back for Vol Umbra at D2. Return here after saving and quickly move to the left to the dark room. Keep an eye on the spike movements to discern where there are obstacles. Ducking is necessary for some parts so Shanoa won't get nailed. Sliding also helps. Sometimes you can use the moving spikes to jar Shanoa westward. You should still have plenty of health items if need be, but dying isn't a big deal due to the save point. After you absorb Vol Umbra the room will light up. If you aren't comfortable with guiding Shanoa back, you can use a magical ticket and take the long way back to Albus. Oncec you return to the save room, reactivate Sapiens Fio (which goes away after saving) before entering the blue door. BOSS - ALBUS: Even With Vol Umbra, this is still a moderately difficult battle. He is pretty quick and likes to jump and slide around a lot. Vol Umbra usually will hit Albus multiple times as he tends to run into the eye of the storm. One annoying attack is when he yells something like "VERITICAL SHOT" and two swirling bullets will fly at you. Generally it is avoidable by double jumping while standing close to Albus. This attack will hurt if it hits, generally about 200 damage. However, the attack that is most likely to hit you is when Albus simply points his gun at you and fires, which is difficult to see coming if you are shooting at him with Vul Umbra. Ducking when you are in this range is a good move in case he does this, although he will duck and shoot you if he sees you ducking. The good news here is that if you see him duck you can tell he is about to fire, and you can jump over easy enough. If you attempt to jump over Albus he tends to jump kick with fire feet, but as long as you double jump over him he usually won't connect. Albus will occasionally use his newfound ability to cast glyphs, I've seen him cast Grando followed by an Ignis shot. He also has his own unique glyph he can cast which is essentially a huge ball of energy, which is a fatal shot if it connects (no invincible time when hit). If you are quick you can absorb it or double jump over it. Albus will eventually fall after about 40 direct hits from Vol Umbra. Using your hearts on union glyphs is a good idea in conjunction with regular shots. I used all my thick steak, minestrone and potions in this battle. Once Albus is dealt with, go back to town and rebuy all the consumables that you used. Don't forget to save. Get out Vol Luminatio and have a chat with Barlowe at Ecclesia. BOSS - BARLOWE: First things first, activate Sapiens Fio. Vol Luminatio isn't exactly a quick glyph, but you can fire it from a far and let it home in on Barlowe. The most dangerous attack by far is the book of ice. If he opens his book downward he is about to shoot ice at the ground, so double jump right as you see the ice start to branch (and not a second sooner!) or you will freeze and subsequently die by the lightning attack he follows up with (you can't use any items). I have once broken the ice by jamming all the buttons and the directional pad in all directions, but it is pretty hard to do. Another dangerous attack is when you see him summoning a glyph, which is Globus. The easiest way to avoid it is to absorb it when you see him begin to cast, otherwise two dark balls will bounce around the room and Shanoa is likely to take at least one hit. The third most dangerous attack is when Barlowe shields himself with electricity and starts bouncing around the room while laughing maniacally. I had some good luck by running to the corner and ducking, but usually get hit once. When Barlowe starts summoning many books, that indicates he is going to start flinging fire at you. Running under him and double jumping to avoid the remaining fire books. After Barlowe loses a certain amount of HP, he will start teleporting around and kicking you from alternate directions. Double jump and move away from the direction he is attacking from. This battle is hard but unless you get nailed by the ice attack (essentially a 1-hit kill), it is unlikely you will run out of all the consumables you have. This battle is similar to the previous boss battle in that it takes about forty hits to defeat Barlowe. After Barlowe is defeated, restock on health items and save. Now for the seventh inning stretch - Dracula's Castle. MYSTERY MANOR MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES WHITE FOMOR ( ): flies around while occasionally casting Vol Luminatio, which can be absorbed. If it successfully casts the glyph, it will home in on Shanoa. The White Fomor will occasionally teleport when damaged, usually behind Shanoa. It is weak to darkness but Shanoa can Kill it with any glyph you fancy, Ignis works okay. MAD BUTCHER ( ): This guy stands around with a chainsaw until you get close or damage it. He will then roar and charge Shanoa. Easy enough to double jump over, or you can kill it your new glyph Vol Luminatio in four shots with the intelligence boosting glyph. ============================================================================= DRACULA'S CASTLE - CASTLE ENTRANCE (ENT1) PREREQUISITES: Vol Luminatio, Ignis, your best intelligence equipment setup (perhaps the same you used against Barlowe), the support glyph Sapiens Fio. You should also have the following stats: Max HP: 288 Max MP: 170 Max Hearts: 140 CONSUMABLES NEEDED: I used up a lot of potions, especially when farming the treasure for a couple Miser Rings. Your mileage may vary, but since gold shouldn't be an issue you might as well bring everything you can carry. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Miser Ring x2 at S12 (random rare treasure), Heart Max Up at U12, Thief Ring at S12 (random rare treasure), Tasty Meat at T14 if you didn't get this previously. OVERVIEW: A short journey through the castle entrance where Shanoa will encounter some new beasts, picking up the Heart Max Up along the way. There is a save point that will make the journey easier, and more importantly a couple Miser Rings in a random treasure which will make her quest much easier. If you are using DarthNemesis' maps, note that his grid includes lower case letters as well since the vertical axis has more than 26 'units'. If I make a reference to his map, take care to notice if the letter is upper or lower case. Enter the Castle and make your way inside to the right. After entering a couple of the gates you will finally be inside, where you will encounter your first Peeping Eye and Blood Skeleton, both of which are weak to Vol Luminatio. Pelt them from a distance to be safe, unless you want to rush through which is also perfectly viable. The Blood skeleton can't really die, so run past when it crumbles into a pile of bones. In the middle of this hallway is a Gargoyle that breaks off a pedestal in the background. It isn't really weak to anything beyond striking weapons, it is easiest just to keep running past this guy. The Gargoyle is fairly easy to kill with Ignis or Vol Luminatio however. In the next room is a Fleaman and a Peeping Eye. Deal with these any way you see fit, but be aware there is a Black Panther (resistant to light) at the edge of the screen, and if it is hit it could make the battle more difficult. Ideally the Fleaman and Peeping Eye can be taken out with Ignis (which won't hit the Panther) and the Black Panther can be isolated, and taken out with four well placed Ignis shots - each attack connecting with all three fireballs. These cats can do some damage so a Union Glyph is a good idea here. Continue to the right to find a save point. After saving, go back out and up to the left, beware the Fleaman that will attempt to drop onto Shanoa. A Black Panther, the Peeping Eye from before will respawn, and another Fleaman will block Shanoa from the Heart Max Up at U12 - You may as well utilize another Ignis Union since your hearts will be replenished soon. Return to the right and save, and then go up and to the right. There is a vertical chamber here with three harmless Blood Skeletons. Kill them or simply run pass. There is also a Tasty Meat in a breakable ledge for Aeon's last quest if you didn't get one previously. PUT ON THE TREASURE HAT before entering the room to the upper left at S13. Run to the left and dispatch the single Black Panther and open the treasure (which will hopefully be a Miser Ring) on the left. Beware the Peeping Eye. No matter what the treasure is, use a magical ticket to go back to town. Restocking on health is a good idea as usual. At this point you will be dedicating the next hour or so farming for two Miser Rings at the S12 location, or where you just got that previous treasure. It isn't difficult to run past most enemies on the way to that location. Unfortunately, using the save point and restarting if the treasure isn't what you want doesn't seem to work (the game generates the same treasure each time). Once you get the two fully powered Miser Rings however, you will find that Shanoa does almost 6 times the damage as she did without the rings. With these two rings under your belt (or on your fingers) you still can't disregard the enemies elemental weaknesses, but you do have some more flexibility on which glyphs you can use - aside from striking and slashing glyphs, which are unaffected by the Miser Rings. For the remainder of this area (and faq) I will mostly assume Shanoa is utilizing Ignis, Vol Luminatio and soon Nitesco however. Return back to the save point in the Castle and go back up to the same room the Miser Ring is obtainable at S13. Go up and destroy or jump past the Black Panther and Peeping Eye. In the next hallway there are quite a few ghouls and a Black Panther, destroy them or double jump / stomp past them and move on. The next area has two Black Panthers and a Peeping eye, which can be a nuisance due to the vertical nature of this room. The Black Panthers that aren't facing you can be ignored and jumped past. Up and to the right you'll find a hallway that has an assortment of ghouls, Blood skeletons and two Peeping eyes - all of which can be jumped over (and stomped on if one appears below you). The Peeping Eyes generally take too long to wake up to impede your progress. Moving to the right will take you to the next area, the castle's library. CASTLE ENTRANCE MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: PEEPING EYE ( ): Weak to light, but is also reasonably killable with Ignis. It will fly around annoying Shanoa, and will get stunned briefly if it is hit. The 'tail' usually can't hit Shanoa but it is still best not to let this thing get directly above you. Shanoa can blast these things quite a couple times before they wake up too for some cheap damage. BLOOD SKELETON ( ): Stumbles toward you like the normal old zombies, but they never stay dead permanently. Double jump passed them or blast them with Ignis or Vol Luminatio, then run passed it. GARGOYLE ( ): These reside in the background until Shanoa gets close enough. They make do some damage if you run directly in front of one. Weak only to striking glyphs but aren't resistant to any other glyphs beyond lightning (which you should rarely use anyway). They can be annoying but aren't particularly hard to dodge unless other enemies are impeding Shanoa. BLACK PANTHER ( ): Pretty much like a Ladycat as far as A.I. is concerned, but can take and deal more damage. Still resistant to light, so break out Ignis and use a Glyph Union for quick results. More dangerous than most enemies at this point do to its quickness. ============================================================================= DRACULA'S CASTLE - LIBRARY (LIB1) PREREQUISITES: Vol Luminatio, Ignis, your best intelligence equipment setup (which should now include two Miser Rings) and the support glyph Sapiens Fio. The Thief Ring is quite useful for farming Draculina. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: Everything you have left from the previous entrance, which should be close to max (perhaps all the potions used but not much else) CRITICAL PICKUPS: L12 for HP Max Up, H13 for MP Max Up, activating the teleporter at I12. OVERVIEW: A journey up the library, grabbing the HP and MP Max Ups before a "battle" with Wallman. After exiting the Castle Entrance area at P14, progress upwards, dodging and blasting the two Peeping Eyes with Ignis or Vol Luminatio. In the next room to the left are more ghouls and a Black Panther. You can kill them all with Ignis (perhaps a Union Glyph) or run and double jump/stomp over them. When you reach the next room at N12, you will encounter a creature known as Draculina, which is weak to fire and light. I recommend using your new Thief Ring and Ribbon to farm Draculina for the Stephanie headwear. After that, reequip your usual intelligence items (Corset Dress, Stephanie helm, two Miser rings) and work your way up killing the Peeping Eye in your way. At L12 you will find a HP Max Up which is easy to double jump to. After going to the next room to the right, blast the two Black Panthers with Ignis, and go up. In the next room is a Draculina on your left. Before going up, be aware you will have to double jump soon over a Tin Man - the same one as all the way back at the end of Minera Prison. Two hits may kill you. You can kill it if you feel like it but it is much easier to double jump over it, and move on. Go up to the next area and immediately run to the right and save. After saving, this room contains a White Fomor (easy to kill with any glyph due to your Miser Rings), a Black Panther, and a Draculina up above. There is also a teleporter on the left that you should activate at I12, which also gives you the opportunity to return to the Village and get more consumable health items. The boss Wallman is up and to the right. BOSS - WALLMAN: This guy is very easy if Shanoa still remembers how to absorb a glyph. The wallman will throw out some bombs that tick down and explode only horizontally and vertically, Bomberman style. Find a safe place to absorb, and this boss will die. If you damage it a few times it will also drop a super potion. A couple safe places (depending on where the Wallman throws his bombs) is on top of the red block or blue block. Now that you have the Paries glyph, you can pass through walls. In the next room you can obtain Melio Confodere, which you will probably never use considering you have the Miser Rings at your disposal. Use a ticket to get back to town and restock on health items. After saving, return to the regular entrance of the castle and make your way to S15. There is an HP Max Up at S16 after you pass through the wall. Keep moving to the right, defeat the Blood Skeleton in the next room and drop down to the next area. Move to the left and jump over and/or destroy the ghouls and Black Panther. Drop down and deal with the three Peeping Eyes. The second one comes from the right and may get the jump on you since the distance between Shanoa and the bottom of the screen is very minute. After reaching the bottom, go to the right, Shanoa will run into the Underground Labyrinth. LIBRARY MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: DRACULINA ( ): This creature is weak to both Fire and Light (as most are in the castle). It tends to fly directly above you, which forces Shanoa to 'juke' Draculina by moving one way while she moves a different way so you can jump and attack it without getting hit. She will occasionally direct a bat to attack you, which can complicate things, but is also killable. An important item you probably want to grab is the Stephanie for your helm slot, which helps magic damage. ============================================================================= DRACULA'S CASTLE - UNDERGROUND LABYRINTH (LAB1) PREREQUISITES: Vol Luminatio, Ignis, your best intelligence equipment setup (which should now include two Miser Rings and the Stephanie helm) and the support glyph Sapiens Fio. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: Everything you have left from the previous area. I ended up eating four thick steaks for the boss Blackmore and a few potions/meats/soups for other times when Shanoa got dinged up. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Vol Ignis at B11, Nitesco (first obtainable at W19 when you encounter the first Nova Skeleton). Nitesco is both has both light and fire properties. Later in the area, Mercury Boots can be found at d23, which I think are better than any defense improving leg wear until Shanoa gets Rapidus Fio. Felicem Fio is a passive glyph that can improve Shanoa's luck at j37. Right at the lower entrance at i41 is the terrific glyph Rapidus Fio, which greatly increases Shanoa's movement speed. OVERVIEW: A trip to the bowels of the castle, with perhaps a brief stop to b11 to get Vol Ignis among other glyphs, as well as a Heat Max Up after a boss battle with Blackmore. Keep in mind that even though this area is quite long, there will be a couple opportunities to save and restock on health items. After entering V19, drop down and encounter your first Nova Skeleton. After it attempts to blast you by summoning a glyph, absorb it to gain Nitesco, which is one of the better glyphs in the game. Fire Nitesco in midair for maintain Shanoa's mobility, or backdash to break her out of the firing animation if you shoot on the ground. Keep going down and you will encounter a Polkir, which is also weak to flame (Ignis or Nitesco works well). Lower still is another Nova Skeleton. In the next area you have the option of progressing to the left at Z18 or dropping down and then going left at a19 (which does have a random treasure). The lower area has two Gurkha Master's enemies that fall easily to Nitesco and Shanoa's Miser Rings. If you choose the above passage, Shanoa will have to deal with a Nova Skeleton and two Gashidas. The Nova Skeleton can do some mean damage and is hard to dodge due to the flat nature of the room if given time to unleash its glyph. The Gashidas are also quite dangerous as they can stone Shanoa. However you way you make your way to b15, continue to the left to get the glyph Vol Ignis after dispatching the Polkir. The flames should be fairly easy to dodge, especially compared to the dark room with the spikes at the Mystery Manor. Note that when jumping over the first block, you have to continue over and drop or Shanoa will get nailed by the horizontal flame behind her. Once Vol Ignis is absorbed the flames will dissipate. Backtrack to the previous room and destroy the Polkir and three Nova Skeletons on your way down. In the Hallway to the right are two more Gurkha Masters. It should be rare for your enemies to get an attack off since your damage output is so high with your equipment. Continue to the right and kill two Gashidas and another Gurkha Master. Jump up and go to the right to find the Mercury Boots at d23 guarded by a single Polkir. Go back down, kill the Gurkha Master on the right again and drop down to the right before the Gashidas engage Shanoa. Descend downwards and kill the Polkir and Nova Skeletons. Make sure you activate the teleporter h22, which also gives Shanoa the opportunity to restock on consumable items. Below the teleporter is a save point. To the right is a hallway with a Polkir, followed by a boss battle. BOSS - BLACKMORE: Well... if you have made it this far and you don't have a problem with using the items that you have earned (Miser rings, Thick Steak...) this battle shouldn't be much of a problem. Nitesco or Ignis seemed to work well for me. The biggest threat that may kill Shanoa is Blackmore's breathe attack. If you see Blackmore's shadow crouch down and open his maw wide, that means he is about to shoot a beam right near the ground. Luckily, like most 2D games, the answer is jumping straight upward. Another similarly animated attack is if you see Blackmore's form tilt back and he opens his mouth upward, and you should expect meteors of shadow to assault Shanoa. Oddly, I've had good luck just standing still for this. If Blackmore loses quite a bit of health, he will tilt back, and then tilt back again for a full meteor-shadow assault, which you will have to move forward to avoid. As for the other quick less dangerous attacks for the Medal oriented folk, this guy tends to lean back before striking - and once he does strike (which you should jump over) Shanoa should duck under the next swipe which is coming, but then jump again to avoid the very quick follow up attack. Blackmore may repeat the last two physical swipes ad infinitum. At the end of the day, you should be jumping and firing with Nitesco as often as Shanoa's MP allows. Any time she takes two hits, you should eat a steak. If the shadow meteors make an appearance, be sure that Shanoa is at full health or she will probably die upon contact with said meteors. After less than a minute of Nitesco assault, Blackmore will die. Not a lot of fanfare compared to Barlowe or Albus, but still dangerous if you aren't careful. After Blackmore is dead return to the earlier save point before, continuing to the right and wreck the two Nova Skeletons (or jump over them). Eliminate the Polkir in the next area, jump up and keep going right when given the opportunity. There will be short series of Polkirs and Nova Skeletons, but eliminating them before they shoot their destructive blasts shouldn't be difficult with Nitesco and the overpowered Miser Rings. In the next room, go down and kill the Fleaman. Destroy the ground with Ignis or any other glyph that can target the floor. After dropping down, go to the room to the left and get the Super Potion. Break the wall to the right and get out the Paries glyph to pass through the wall. After grabbing Felicem Fio (passive glyph that improves Shanoa's luck) break the wall to the right and continue. After using Paries again, go up and destroy the Nova Skeleton and Gashida, and either kill or jump over the remaining Nova Skeleton. Before exiting absorb Rapidus Fio, the glyph that greatly enhances Shanoa's movement speed. Note that by doing this, you free up the legwear slot for anything that helps Shanoa's maximum defense instead of using the Mercury Boots. Exit the Castle, save and restock on health items in the town. Since you were farming the treasure chests earlier, you should now have enough gold ore to complete Eugen's final quest (if you haven't done it earlier), granting much better leg armor and body armor if you don't mind sacrificing magic power through Shanoa's dress - the Miser Rings are the bulk of your damage output from here on. You will now have the option to visit either of the secret areas, which isn't really necessary. Reenter the castle from the lower secret entrance or the main castle entrance and teleport to the room before you fought Blackmore, which is probably slightly faster. Return to h35, or the same place where the Fleaman was guarding the secret breakable floor. Continue back upward to the top, destroying all the Nova Skeletons in your path. At the top, go to the right and encounter your first Red Smasher which is guarding a Heart Max Up at e37. After getting the Heart Max Up, backtrack to h30, or the vertical hall you were in shortly after defeating Blackmore. Go straight up, unless you want to take a short journey to the left in order to get the Lapiste glyph at c27, which I found useless. The Nova Skeletons shouldn't pose much of a threat to you at this point with all the practice Shanoa has had killing them. The next area is another vertical hall. You can drop down and destroy the breakable wall to the left for a White Drop if you wish, (it helps your Nitesco damage!) but beware the Nova Skeleton guarding it. Continue upward to the next area and you will encounter your first Hammer Shaker. Activate Rapidus Fio and double jump over him, or blast him to oblivion with Nitesco before he swings his hammer. In the next area there will be a push-able block in front of you, but don't shove it off quite yet or it will break (it respawns if you reenter the room). Drop down and push the other block first to raise the water level, then jump back up and push the other block in the water to raise the water level further. Now you can jump out of the water onto a ledge. The next hall contains another Hammer Shaker, either jump over it (with Rapidus Fio) or destroy it quickly with Miser Ring - powered Nitesco. The next Vertical room has five (!) Polkirs that can occasionally flood the screen quickly. Swap out Nitesco for Ignis if you are having trouble hitting them. Enter the door and Shanoa will find herself in the Barracks of the castle. UNDERGROUND LABYRINTH MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: NOVA SKELETON( ): When you see the glyph being summoned, you are about to be blasted in the face by a massive beam. Either absorb it or get out of the way. Easily killable by fire or light. POLKIR ( ): Weak to fire, so use Ignis or Nitesco. If you see it trace a line towards you, get out of the way quick or prepare for some big fire damage. GURKHA MASTERS( ): Resistant to fire so use Nitesco or Vol Luminatio. These guys will lean back before throwing their swords so be prepared to back off (ducking doesn't work). GASHIDA ( ): These monsters are not weak to any magical glyphs, so simply blast away with Vol Luminatio or Nitesco. If you see it shake its head and tilt it upward, it is about to spit a gas that will turn Shanoa to stone. That attack combined with its leap can be quite lethal. Note that the other attack is the aforementioned leap, which can be dodged by going under Gashida, but it is probably safer just to run backwards. RED SMASHER ( ): Weak to striking and lightning, but resists fire. Note that Nitesco still does full damage. Similar to Gurkha Masters but with better stats. Fire off Nitesco will back dashing to end him quickly. Beware - on its death animation it will throw one of its blades, which can hit Shanoa, so duck or jump over this as it can take away two-thirds of Shanoa's life (almost 200 damage). HAMMER SHAKER ( ): Resistant to fire, but Nitesco still works here since it doesn't resist light as well. One attack is the legs kicked outward, which he tends to do if you get in his face. The more dangerous attack is the hammer smash, which has a range of half the screen and will easily take two-thirds of Shanoa's life. Kill him before he swings with this because you may already be backed into an area where you can't dodge it. If you have Rapidus Fio, you can easily double jump over him if it is activated. ============================================================================= DRACULA'S CASTLE - BARRACKS (BAR1) PREREQUISITES: Nitesco, two Miser rings. Anything else is up to you, but I opted for mostly intelligence boosting equipment (Stephanie helm, Corset Dress, Platinum Leggings and Rapidus Fio for the support glyph). CONSUMABLES NEEDED: You can get away with having half of what you normally could carry, but you will probably have much more than that as long as you restocked after the Blackmore battle. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Heart Max Up at R28, HP Max Up at R36, MP Max Up at U34, OVERVIEW: Shanoa will travel mostly Eastward, as there is nothing to the West that warrants her attention. After entering the Barracks, the strongest lance glyph (Melio Hasta) will be in your face, so you may as well grab it even though you won't ever use it. Jump up and handle the impotent Nova skeletons, stopping off to a room on the right to save. After saving, go up again and to the East. Defeat the Nova Skeleton and go up (the area outside to the right has a Blade Master and Hammer Shaker guarding a random treasure if you are interested). On your way up two Tin Man creatures will block your path. They are much easier this time around and will fall quite readily to the Miser Rings + Nitesco. If you have Rapidus Fio and are very fast, you can race past them however on your way up. When you reach the red door to the left, ignore it and go up. After a some more Nova Skeletons (which shouldn't be too shocking at this point...), a Devil will drift down to Harass Shanoa. You should be able to blast it into oblivion before it gets an attack off since it is weak to light. Make sure there isn't a wall behind you just in case though, they can take about a third of Shanoa's life depending on her armor setup. Go up and to the left to find an unguarded Heart Max Up. Blast the Devil that respawns and continue to the East. Don't be distracted by the clouds racing by on the castle walls, as you have a Blade Master (remember those?) and a Red Smasher to contend with. They both can be blasted at the same time with Nitesco although occasionally the Blade Master will try to slide tackle you. Keep going to the East. Upon reentering the Castle, A reptile called a Lizardman Blade will greet you. It is very fast (keep Rapidus Fio on!) but seems to have trouble going to different floors, so lure it to the edge if you don't think you can kill it with Nitesco fast enough. If his sword is out, it will come at you extremely quickly, much faster than say the Hammer Shaker's hammer. After the reptile is beaten, go right until you reach a dead end, which is actually a breakable wall that leads into a small chamber at R36 that contains a HP Max Up. Return to the previous room and kill the Lizardman Blade again, then drop down and defeat the Nova Skeletons. There is also a breakable ledge with green drops which you may accidently run into if you have Rapidus Fio activated, as it does miniscule damage to all objects including breakable walls. Continue downward, destroying the two Lizardman Blades along the way (or sprint by them with Rapidus Fio). At the bottom of this screen there will be two unavoidable Blade Masters on the left (assuming you want that treasure), which are killable with three hits from Nitesco. The treasure in question is a MP Max Up. Exit this area to the right. The next hallway (which is actually outdoors on top of one of the castle walls) consists of two Blade Masters with a random treasure in the middle. Duck and shoot them to avoid getting slide tackled. They tend to retreat backward when shot at but not quite enough to get out of the range of Nitesco. The next castle wall has one Lizardman, which you should be able to dispatch before it can fully get its sword out by firing two consecutive Nitesco shots. Back inside the castle you will be confronted by a Gurkha Master. Kill it and keep going right into the next room. Here you will battle both your first Imp and Bugbear. Both are easy to kill as they are weak to Nitesco (the Imp will die in one hit, the Bugbear two hits if you are using the suggested setup). Go down a bit and to the left to find a teleporter, which should be utilized to restock on consumable items at the town, not to mention saving. After returning to this teleporter, continue down if you are interested in grabbing the Valkerie Mail, which is great for physically oriented weapons that you will never use. Backtrack back upward past the teleporter to U42. Go up and destroy the Blade Masters that attempt to impede Shanoa's progress. In the next area, there will be an assortment of enemies that include a Gurkha Master, a Blade Master, an Imp and a Lizardman Blade in that order which can all easily be dealt with using the Nitesco Glyph. There is a breakable wall in the upper left if you want an accessory you will never use, which is the Moon Ring. Go back and kill the Lizardman Blade and enter the glowing red door to the right, which happens to be the next area. BARRACKS SPECIFIC MONSTER STRATEGIES: DEVIL ( ): Weak to Light, Nitesco saves the day again. Blast it before it can get an attack off. If it pulls a claw back to swipe, get off the Devil's horizontal plane or risk getting hit by the wind force (60ish damage). Physical damage can do almost twice that, so don't let the Devil touch you either. LIZARDMAN BLADE ( ): Weak to fire, Nitesco works here too (five hits with my setup). This guy is very fast so try to stay off any ledge he happens to be on if you aren't in a position to kill this reptile fast enough. The swipe of the sword can take about a third or almost 100 HP from Shanoa, and the sword comes out very fast and with medium range (a fourth of the screen real estate). IMP ( ): Easy to kill, but if grabs Shanoa she will go crazy firing off glyphs and sprinting around uncontrollably, which may easily get her killed in this hard mode level 1 challenge. They can also swoop down and do quite a bit of damage, around the 140 range. When you jump, jump again in midair quickly as this annoying creature tends to put itself off your horizontal level. You can also switch to Vol Luminatio for quicker results as the shots will home in on the Imp. BUGBEAR ( ): More or less identical to the Peeping Eyes, but its tail is certain to do damage if it touches Shanoa this time around. It can do a token amount of damage upon hitting Shanoa with its electric tail or eye. Weak to light, two Nitesco shots will kill if you have my setup on. ============================================================================= DRACULA'S CASTLE - MECHANICAL TOWER (MEC1) PREREQUISITES: Again, the key glyphs are Nitesco, two Miser rings. Recommended: Mostly intelligence boosting equipment such as the following: Stephanie helm, Corset Dress, Platinum Leggings and Rapidus Fio for the support glyph - which also renders Shanoa immune to hits from Medusa Heads if she is moving since the Medusa Heads have only one hitpoint, and the shield generated from the Rapidus Fios glyph will kill them before they hit Shanoa. Magnes will also see quite a bit of use here before reaching Death. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: I ended going through quite a few smaller HP consumables such as potions, meat and corn soup with a Minestrone mixed in. The spikey area with Medusa Heads preceding death caused me to use a Thick Steak as well. I ended up eating three more steaks when battling Death. CRITICAL PICKUPS: HP Max Up at L49, Sinestro Custos at G46. OVERVIEW: Back into down into the castle we go, First making our way up to deal with Death (a boss) then backtracking (via teleporter) and progressing down to the next area. It is a bit tricky with quite a few rooms that require Shanoa to use the old Magnes glyph combined with spikes and medusa heads. After entering the Mechanical Tower, Shanoa will be confronted by a Gurkha Master and an Imp. Don't let any Imp grab you or it may march you to your doom. Two more Imps and a Hammer Shaker will soon follow out here. In the next room to the right, there will be a couple Lizardman Blades as well as the Vis Fio buff glyph that raises your strength, which probably won't be of use to you if you are relying on the Miser Rings. Continue upwards and you'll run into another Lizardman Blade and another couple of Imps. Go to the top right if you want to save. Keep in mid this save point at P50 because you will return here later. Reenter the room, defeat the Imps and Lizardman, and race to the left. Get out Magnes. Making your way up the moving magnetic fields is pretty easy compared to what you have experienced previously with all the Medusa Heads, bats and other annoying respawning enemies. You should be able to take three hits before dying at this point as well. In the next area is a Imp and a new robot enemy called Automation ZX27. It has a glyph that lets you break spikes, which is crucial for the Fortune Ring (increases luck), but I didn't bother getting either because there aren't really any new items necessary to beat this game compared to the equipment you have now. The ZX27 is easy to kill with any non-physical glyph, and doesn't really attack aside from marching towards Shanoa. The next area can be dangerous as there are two consecutive Lizardman Blades, a Bugbear floating around and many Medusa Heads floating around everywhere. Now that you have Double Jump and Rapidus Fio, you should have the mobility to avoid them without getting hit, which you can do or just kill the Lizardman. Double jump upward and continue to the next room. Break out Magnes again and launch yourself upward using the magnetic fields. Medusa heads will complicate things but you have a decent amount of HP so you won't necessarily die if you get hit by a Medusa Head and land in the spikes (the spikes seem to only do damage once upon hitting them before you can shake free). There is Valkerie Mask here too, which will probably sit in your inventory unused since It boosts strength and not intelligence. This area is kind of rough but I made it out getting stoned only once and not landing in any spikes - it is less of a crap shoot than previous situations earlier in the game. In the next room, jump up and wait for the rotating magnetic fixture to get in position to launch Shanoa with Magnes. After going up and to the right, there will be yet another spiked room with Medusa Heads. Three Medusa Heads can appear at one time here from the direction that happens to be the farthest entry point to another room from Shanoa. Aim Shanoa to the upper right so she doesn't land in the spikes when you run into the next magnet. Before using the next magnet, make sure you break the wall to the right and obtain the HP Max Up at L49. After launching higher, there will be a moving magnet. If you want, there is the Heart Cuirass in a treasure to the left. After getting it (or not) use the moving magnet to get higher still. I used a thick steak here because I landed in the spikes after slamming into a Medusa Head. Go to the right if you are interested in getting the Death Ring. If not, skip the next paragraph. This next room will be flooded by Medusa Heads, but since there are no spikes this room is less dangerous than the one before it, and you also don't need Magnes here. Note that the Medusa Heads have only one HP, so if you are running around with Rapidus Fio the shield will destroy them before coming in contact with Shanoa. Continue upward and go left to find four Bugbears. Kill them and then break the wall to the left to find the Death Ring. Once you get the Death Ring (or if you decide you don't want it, which is perfectly fine as I also didn't end up using it), return to K47 and go left this time around. The next room is hard as up to four Medusa Heads can appear on screen at once, but if you are patient you can sling your way upward unscathed. Again, getting hit and stoned here and falling into spikes shouldn't be fatal, so be quick with the food consumption. In the next hall is a beast that is similar to The Creature, but with better stats. Double jump over it with Rapidus Fio activated or blast it to oblivion with Nitesco + Miser Ring combo. Keep running to the right until you reach the teleporter, which you can use to restock and save at the town. Get out Magnes again and make your way upward after you return to this section of the castle. Don't launch Shanoa directly up and to the right or she will brush up against some of the spikes, hurting her. It is better to launch straight up then double jump closer to the next magnet. At the top is a save point on the right followed by a big blue door that contains.... BOSS BATTLE - DEATH: Keep Nitesco out for this battle. Death will constantly summon miniature scythes to hassle Shanoa, which are destroyable. I recommend keeping Rapidus Fio activated, for as long as Shanoa is moving her shield will protect her from the scythes floating around, just like with the Medusa Heads. The first attack Death launched against me was three glowing black balls in a triangular pattern, which circle death while expanding outward. Get far away so you can time the balls movement, which makes those balls easier to avoid. Getting hit results in a bit over 100 damage. The attack I saw next from Death is when he summoned six large Scythes, three on each side stacked on each other, that closed in on Shanoa. The way to avoid this is to double jump straight up and go in the direction opposite of Death - the smaller scythes won't touch Shanoa due to Rapidus Fio. Throughout the fight, if you stand directly in front of or under Death, he will take a swing at you with his personal scythe. It shouldn't land since however since Rapidus Fio makes Shanoa so fast. If you do get hit be prepared to eat a steak or other item, as Shanoa will take easily more than 200 damage. As long as you are consistently blasting death with Nitesco (and perhaps utilizing glyph unions), this battle shouldn't last more than ninety seconds if you have two fully powered Miser Rings. Easy compared to the boss battles preceding Dracula's castle, I only needed three steaks here. After Death is dead, go to the left and absorb the glyph Sinestro Custos. After getting the Sinestro Custos glyph, return to town with a ticket and restock on health items (and save of course!) Teleport back to W42 and make your way back to the save point at P50, and then drop down and go right to enter a vertical hallway. Drop down but don't drop all the way to the right (which I did since I had Rapidus Fio activated) or you may land on some spikes, which will eat up almost half of Shanoa's life at this point. Continue to the left. Enjoy the moonlight on your way Westward. You can get out the ol Magnes glyph to swing over the spikes or keep Rapidus Fio on and leap over it, and do the same with the next set of spikes. To the right you can eventually make your way east, down and then west to obtain the Morbus glyph (by using a lighting glyph to activate the two machines) but you will never use it, I didn't bother personally. If you do get it, backtrack to U46 (where you will be standing if you opt not to get the Morbus glyph) then go left to the next area. Continue to drop down until you get close to the bottom of this vertical hall, as there are spikes in the lower left part. There is also a random treasure here and no enemies. Go right after reaching the bottom. Here is another insanely fast Lizardman Blade, so either double jump over it with Rapidus Fio or dispatch it quickly with Nitesco. There is also an Imp and Bugbear beyond the reptile. Continue to the right. Next a Gurkha Master and Red Smasher will contest Shanoa. Either double jump over or destroy them, don't forget that the Red Smasher will throw his blade after being defeated. As you continue left another Lizardman Blades will block you, which you actually have to kill if you don't want to take a hit. Drop down and break out the Magnes glyph to get up to the next ledge. There will be yet another Lizardman Blade as well as a random treasure. In the next room is a mix of enemies that include a Lizardman Blade, a Bugbear and a Hammer Shaker, all of which you can leap over or destroy easily. To the left is more of the same, a couple Bugbears and an Imp. You will soon run into the red door that leads to another area, the Arms Depot. MECHANICAL TOWER MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: AUTOMATION ZX27 ( ): Marches toward Shanoa slowly, resists only physical glyphs. Blast it with Nitesco. Drops a rare glyph that turns Shanoa into a robot that is immune to spikes, which is needed if you are interested in getting the Fortune Ring. REBUILD ( ): Usually easy to double jump over or run under if it tries to jump into you, especially with Rapidus Fio activated. It will fall quite quickly to sustained Nitesco fire however, so you can kill it if you want. Don't get hit as it can do some decent damage quickly to Shanoa. ============================================================================= DRACULA'S CASTLE - ARMS DEPOT (ARM1) PREREQUISITES: The same key glyphs are Nitesco, two Miser rings. Recommended: Mostly intelligence boosting equipment such as the following: Stephanie helm, Corset Dress, Platinum Leggings and Rapidus Fio for the support glyph. Dominus Hatred is also a good glyph for the boss until the last phase. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: I ate the equivalent of four thick steaks on the way down to the boss Eligor, and I then another four thick steaks, all my Minestrone, Curry, Corn Soup and Potions were needed to defeat him. CRITICAL PICKUPS: HP Max Up at Y42, Arma Custos at d46. OVERVIEW: Traveling back down into the lower reaches of the castle before facing off against Eligor and procuring the Arma Custos glyph, which is necessary to progress in the game. After going through the red door, Shanoa will immediately be assaulted by a Bugbear. Ignore it by jumping over to the hall to the left. In this hall there will be a Gurkha Master and a Hammer Shaker, both easy to annihilate or fly past with Rapidus Fio. In the room past the hall, there is another Hammer Shaker and an HP Max Up (putting your max HP at 388). Jump past the Hammer Shaker and Gurkha Master on the way out, or kill them if you wish. When you reenter the vertical area with the Bugbears, go down to the bottom, they are quite easy to avoid before waking them up. Once you get to the bottom, you can go to the right if you want the Melio Scutom glyph, or the best shielding glyph available, which is guarded by a Spectral Sword. You will probably have to kill the sword or risk getting hit while attempting to absorb the glyph (which I never used anyway). Further to the right is a random treasure guarded by a Mad Snatcher. After getting the Melio Scutom glyph (or if you opt not to) progress left to a44. A Gurkha Master, a Red Smasher and a Hammer Shaker will all be in a line waiting for Shanoa. If you decide to kill them instead of leaping over them (Rapidus Fio should be activated for this), remember that the Red Smasher will hurl his sword upon his demise. Note that if you really want the Melio Culter, the last knife glyph, you will have to kill all three enemies. Shanoa will never use it however, so don't feel as though you are missing out if don't get it. In the next room is a Rebuild, which is easiest to jump over via Rapidus Fio, but running/sliding under him when he jumps or simply killing him (with Nitesco) are also quite easy to do. Prepare to backdash in case the Rebuild attempts to knee Shanoa. In the next room Shanoa will run into a Great Knight, the first one in the game. This one is too big to jump over even with Rapidus Fio, but is still about as easily to kill as the other larger enemies. Nitesco still works here, so blast the knight about eight times and he will fall. Behind the Great Knight is another new enemy, the King Skeleton right next to the Melio Falcis glyph, which is another physical glyph that Shanoa probably will never use. The King Skeleton also can't be leaped over, and while sliding into him and taking damage just to get by (a strategy you have perhaps utilized before), with Nitesco and the Miser Rings it makes more sense to just destroy the giant skeleton. In the next screen there will be an area leading down with a couple Mad Snatchers around. Make sure that you activate the teleporter to the left, and it is advisable to make your way back to the village to restock on consumable health items for the upcoming boss. After returning to the teleporter, progress to the right. Another Great Knight/King Skeleton combo will await Shanoa, simply blast them from afar with Vol Luminatio or Nitesco if you want to end them sooner. Further to the right on the next screen, a hallway with two Spectral Swords await. With Rapidus Fio you can run/slide under them, but killing them is just as easy and quick as long as you have those Miser Rings. After this hallway, there is another vertical chamber with a couple Mad Snatchers hanging around. Go down and to the left to save. There is a breakable ledge with a Mint Sundae right before the blue door to the right, in which you will find... BOSS BATTLE - ELIGOR: This boss is actually somewhat challenging, even with the Miser Rings. Note first that two hits will kill generally Shanoa, so don't be shy with those health items. I found Dominus Hatred to be the most efficient way to kill this boss. If you have all the HP Max Ups, or 388 Max HP, you can fire off three Dominus Hatred shots which will still allow Shanoa to take a hit and not die. I recommend eating an item before you keep attacking with Dominus Hatred to minimize the risk of death. I got hit about fifteen times in this battle, which required me to use a good deal of health consumables. Eligor has five 'parts' that can be destroyed - Two red orbs on his knees, two crossbows that fire from his thighs, and a red orb on his head. Once Eligor bucks you to the right, the battle will start and this boss will alternate between attempting to stab you and firing the crossbow at you. The sword stabs are easy enough to dodge, but do 200+ damage on contact, like every other attack. If confronted by the crossbow, it will start shooting down but rotate to fire progressively higher until it fires horizontally to the right, ending that particular assault. The bolts are easy enough to dodge if you time the arrows (which are also breakable by any attack). Dodge the bolts and sword will firing of Dominus Hatred, and remember to replenish Shanoa's health after three shots. Ideally the right crossbow will break before the beast rears its front legs, at which point Shanoa must run under and stand directly under Eligor. At this point any remaining crossbows will take aim at Shanoa as the beast walks back and forth. Any time one of the crossbows is damaged, it will revert to aiming straight down instead of taking aim at Shanoa. This is one of the few situations where Rapidus Fio is not a great idea, since there is very little wiggle room under Eligor. Destroy the right crossbow with Dominus Hatred if it isn't already destroyed, then focus on the left crossbow. Eventually this boss will leap upward, granting Shanoa the opportunity to run under its left hooves, which she should do even if the crossbow remains. Now the idea is to avoid the remaining attacks from behind Eligor, while destroying the red orb on the left leg. If the crossbow on the left thigh is still around make sure you destroy it at this point. After a perhaps six shots, the orb will be destroyed and Eligor arch its back allowing Shanoa to mount it. Switch to Vol Luminatio at this point, and hang towards the butt-end of Eligor, as it is hard to dodge the sword and elbow attacks that occur if you get too close to the head. Jump up and fire off Vol Luminatio at the head as magic power allows. Remember to consume health items if Shanoa gets hurt, which she likely will. After a minute of sustained Vol Luminatio Eligor will finally fall. Not a pretty way to kill the boss, but Dominus Hatred works. When it is all said and done, Eligor will slam into the right wall and give Shanoa an incline up to the next room, which has the Arma Custos glyph. After that is absorbed, use a ticket to get back into the village and restock on all the health items used. Don't forget to save. When you return to the castle, teleport to the upper left in the library, or I12. ARMS DEPOT MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: SPECTRAL SWORD ( ): Resistant to fire but Nitesco still works due to its light element. The sword is somewhat fast when it gains momentum and covers a large part of the screen with all the swords and shields flying around. If you have Rapidus Fio activated, you can easily sprint by it before it starts spinning the blades and shields. You can also blast it with the glyph of your choosing except for Ignis (powered by the Miser Rings of course). MAD SNATCHER ( ): The Mad Butcher equivalent with better stats. This one is weak to fire and light, so Ignis, Nitesco or Vol Luminatio all work fine. Kill him before he starts sprinting at you (although he isn't particularly fast now that you have the speedy Rapidus Fio working for you.) GREAT KNIGHT ( ): This is an enemy that is really difficult to avoid, jumping over it is very difficult since its weapon tends to knock Shanoa back. However, as long as you have the Miser Rings from awhile ago, this one is a pushover, just like everybody else. Blast it with Nitesco or any glyph that you are comfortable with, it doesn't resist any element. When it swings, Shanoa can also crouch right in front of its feet as the weapon goes over her head. This guy is really slow but does quite a bit of damage if it lands a hit. KING SKELETON ( ): Impossible to jump over, but not really dangerous considering the equipment you have. This one generally just stumbles towards you slowly, but if you see it grab its axe with both hands it is going to swing soon, so run away or back dash. It is likely you will never see any attack is the King Skeleton will fall quickly to Ignis, Nitesco or Vol Luminatio. ============================================================================= DRACULA'S CASTLE - RETURN TO THE LIBRARY (LIB2) PREREQUISITES: The same key glyphs are Nitesco, two Miser rings. Recommended: Mostly intelligence boosting equipment such as the following: Stephanie helm, Corset Dress, Platinum Leggings and Rapidus Fio for the support glyph. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: a handful of minor health items, I got dinged up about four or five times during this part. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Dextro Custos at R22 OVERVIEW: A straightforward journey from the upper left teleporter to R22 to pick up Dextro Custos, and then a minor amount of backtracking in order to eventually reach N35. After returning to the Castle Library via teleporter at I11, return to the point where you killed Wallman and use the Paries glyph to get through the wall. In the next room is a Draculina and a Tin Man, both easy to jump over or kill. In the next room to the right, drop down and then move left a bit and drop down again while avoiding the Black Panther from the right that may make an appearance. In the next hall kill run by the Peeping Eye and make your way to the right, where there is another Black Panther that you can leap over or destroy. In the next vertical hall, there are a couple Draculinas on either side of Shanoa, so drop down the middle to avoid being hit. After landing at the bottom, go to the screen to the left. After passing by a room that has nothing noteworthy, continue to the left. Double jump to the left with Rapidus Fio activated and destroy the wall behind the Draculina if you are interested in getting the Refectio glyph or the Hanged Man Ring. Refectio would be kind of good if Shanoa had access to it before being rich enough to buy all the consumables she could carry. Anyway, after getting those items or skipping them, return to the previous room at L19 and make your way down. There will be a couple mad butchers that you can kill easily with Nitesco, but if you are quick enough you can drop down to the next hall without bothering with the butchers. This next area has two Tin Men rolling around below a ledge Shanoa is standing on. You can have Shanoa double jump to the left with Rapidus Fio activated and then drop down to the next room, or you can manipulate there movement so they overlap, making it easier to drop down without getting hit. Using Nitesco powered by the Miser Rings will make short work of the tin dudes if you decide to kill them. Upon dropping further down, Shanoa will find a couple Draculinas on either side which are easiest to kill with Vol Luminatio, but really almost anything works. In the next bigger-than-usual room are a few Mad Butchers, which you can jump past as they start up their chainsaws, or kill them if you choose. The next hall is kind of tricky as it has two back-to-back Tin Men that immediately come at you as you enter. The quick and easy way is to make sure Rapidus Fio is activated and double jump past them, or drop down quickly and blast them with the Miser Powered Nitesco. The next vertical hall contains a couple Mad Butchers, which you can ignore while dropping down. There is, however, a breakable ledge in the upper right behind the higher Mad Butcher that contains a health item that you may be interested in. After dropping down, go to the left into the feast room. In the delicious room, Dextro Custos will be floating above what appears to be a fish on a plate. After retrieving the Dextro Custos Glyph, Shanoa should have all three Custos glyphs needed to progress. You should now make your way back to L21, which is a couple rooms to the right of where Shanoa had the option of breaking the wall to get the Refectio glyph and the Hanged Man Ring. If you are low on consumable items, Shanoa should probably use a ticket to get back to town and replenish those items. If you take this route, go back to the castle after saving and teleport to the upper left portion of the library again, and make your way to L21. If you feel good about Shanoa's health situation, backtrack to L21 the way you came. Most of the strategies on the way down are viable on the way up. Actually, with Rapidus Fio activated, you don't really have to engage in any enemies except for the first Mad Butcher on the vertical hallway up. Once you get back to L21, or the fork where you could go right or left, go right this time around. This hallway contains a White Fomor and Draculina, which I recommend killing this time around (Nitesco works great as usual). The reason is that while the enemies that include a Tin Man, another White Fomor and another Draculina are avoidable, if you are using Rapidus Fio you are very likely to run right into the Tin Man's axe while attempting to flee the first two enemies. Killing them all is safer and easier this time around. The next room is a vertical hallway that contains a couple Draculinas and a peeping eye on both sides of the chamber. Simply drop down and activate the teleporter to the left, which you can utilize to get back to town and fill up on more health items if you are inclined to do so. After returning to the castle, teleport back to N26 and progress to the right through the glowing red door. (no new enemies the second time through the library.) ============================================================================= DRACULA'S CASTLE - FORSAKEN CLOISTER (FOR1) PREREQUISITES: The same key glyphs are Nitesco, two Miser rings. Recommended: Mostly intelligence boosting equipment such as the following: Stephanie helm, Corset Dress, Platinum Leggings and Rapidus Fio for the support glyph. Also needed for this part is the Dextro Custos glyph (found at R22), Arma Custos (d46) and Sinestro Custos (G46) - all three of which you should have already. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: This area is pretty short, I used two potions and two pieces of meat. CRITICAL PICKUPS: None OVERVIEW: A quick shot through a couple hallways to the right, followed by a vertical chamber up to the next area. After entering the Forsaken Cloister, reactivate Rapidus Fio (it goes away when entering a different area) and note the Cave Troll on the right. Those things are kind of difficult to avoid even with Rapidus Fio, so I recommend blasting it with Vol Luminatio or Nitesco. The next room has another Cave Troll, Nova Skeleton, Bugbear and another Cave Troll at the end. Destroy them all as they come, jumping past them isn't really viable in this narrow hallway. The next area has the Custos room, where Shanoa needs to equip the three Custos items and attack each head with them (including activating the support glyph). A glyph Union does nothing here, so if you don't have any hearts that isn't a problem. Remember to reequip the previous glyph setup up once the lift is lowered. The area above includes a couple respawning enemies that float around, which include Medusa Heads, Gorgon Heads and Winged Guards. Remember that if you have Rapidus Fio activated - which you should - the Medusa and Gorgon Heads will be destroyed if you are moving and you touch one of them. When you reach the top, go to the left and save. There is a breakable ledge at the top of this place with a health item right outside the save room too. Now go through the red door on the right for the Final Approach. (no new enemies for the Forsaken Cloister). ============================================================================= DRACULA'S CASTLE - FINAL APPROACH (FIN1) PREREQUISITES: The same key glyphs are Nitesco, two Miser rings. Recommended: Mostly intelligence boosting equipment such as the following: Stephanie helm, Corset Dress, Platinum Leggings and Rapidus Fio for the support glyph. The Dominus glyphs, which you already have, will be used against Dracula's final form. CONSUMABLES NEEDED: For some reason I kept getting nailed by the plethora of Lizardman Blades, so I used a lot of Minestrone and potions. The Cave Trolls also did a number on me requiring me to feed Shanoa some steakums. CRITICAL PICKUPS: Volaticus at G27, a Heart and MP Max Up both at E28, another Heart Max Up at D36 and another MP Max Up at D35, generally in that order. OVERVIEW: Shanoa will make her way up and then later to the left in order to get the flying glyph Volaticus at G27, then backtrack and continue upward to end Dracula's reign of terror. After entering this area, Shanoa will immediately encounter a Devil, Imp and Lizardman Blade in quick succession. Because the area is so narrow, jumping over these guys isn't really a good option. Don't let the Imp grab Shanoa or it could mean her death by running into the Lizardman Blade. Blast them all as they come with your Miser Ring-powered Nitesco. If you have Rapidus Fio activated, these guys shouldn't be able to touch you as you blast them. Continuing upward, there will be a few more Imps, which you can blast with Vol Luminatio or Ignis if you want an easier time killing them. In the next room to the right, Kill the Imps and jump on the ledge to the upper right. Beware the Lizardman Blade's sword as it may go through the floor and hit you from below. (There is a random treasure below guarded by two Lizardman Blades if you wish, but you should have gotten everything you needed from the rare chests a long time ago). Continuing upward, Shanoa will encounter another Imp and Lizardman Blade before the next hallway to the left. This hallway consists of two Spectral Swords that aren't really avoidable, so either kill the main sword or destroy the shields and blades floating around below it and sprint by with Rapidus Fio activated. The next room has a single Blade Master, which is easy to jump over (it only leaps backward when Shanoa attacks). The next room to the left is somewhat dangerous, as there are six Cave Trolls running around. This time through, you can ignore most of them and kill the ones on the ground level as you run to the left. Each troll with the Miser Ring - Powered Nitesco can be killed in five hits, but Vol Luminatio is probably safer. The next room to the left has a Lilith, which is just as easy to kill as to jump over. The next room is a bit harder, as a couple Final Knight blocks Shanoa's path. Shanoa can't jump over them, but they are fairly easy to kill with Nitesco or Vol Luminatio if you want to keep your distance. Beware the ranged attack that comes from the ground if they slam their axe into the ground. In the next room, drop down to grab the MP Max Up. Go to the left and absorb the Volaticus glyph, which should be easy even with the Winged Skeletons flying around. After absorbing Volaticus, equip it on the R-slot and activate it. Fly straight up through the hole in the ceiling and blast the Bugbears while flying around. There are some drops and the Sun Ring on the left, but more important is the MP Max Up and Heart Max Up on the right. Backtrack to the room with the Final Knights and reequip Rapidus Fio when you get there. After killing the Final Knights, make your way back to the bigger room with all the Cave Trolls. Use Vol Luminatio to eliminate them all on your way up (three shots to kill them if you have those Miser Rings). The next room contains a Devil, so eliminate it quickly with Nitesco or Vol Luminatio before it gets an attack off. Continuing to the right, Shanoa will encounter two more Final Knights that should be killed as they aren't really avoidable. The next room contains a Bugbear, Lilith, Automation ZX27 and a Devil at the top, which are easier to kill than avoid - even with Volaticus or Rapidus Fio activated. After you get by those goons, go left to the next room where a Bugbear and Blade Master appear to be frozen in time - until you get close or attack them that is. On the ground floor there is a Lizardman Blade, another Blade master and a second Lizardman Blade, with a Bugbear at the end to complicate things. Remember the Blade Masters like to crouch slide towards Shanoa occasionally. Destroy them all with Nitesco as you approach. The next room to the left has an unguarded Heart Max Up. After destroying the monsters in the previous area, make your way upward. On the second ledge there is a Devil, dispose of it before it can attack. Above that there is a breakable ceiling where you can find the World Ring. If you want it for some reason (the Miser Ring is so much better!) put on Volaticus and use Ignis to break open the ceiling, where there will be four Blade Masters. Nitesco penetrates their defense, but Vol Luminatio may be a better option if you want to fly around and avoid them. Whether you get the World Ring or not, go back down and to the right to find the last teleporter. Activate it, go back to town, restock on all the consumable health items, and save. Upon returning to the last teleporter at C40, fight your way back to the left by killing the Blade Master, Jumping over the Devil (have Rapidus Fio activated), and killing the other Blade Master blocking your way to the left. Break out Paries when you get to the broken stairway, drop down and push through the wall to the right. Navigate the walls to get the MP Max Up, and then do the same to the walls on the right to get the Super Potion. After those items are obtained, bust out Volaticus and fly up and to the left. Save at the save point before battling with Dracula. Ideally Shanoa will have 388 Max HP, or this battle could be more difficult. BOSS BATTLE - DRACULA: After the dialogue, activate Rapidus Fio. Nitesco is a decent option but I preferred Vol Luminatio since it let me focus on dodging and did more damage per hit. An important note: Dracula has zero tolerance for Volitacus, he will instantly shoot you down with a fire attack from the ground that is only avoidable by approaching Dracula, eventually at which point he will uppercut Shanoa. Dracula only takes damage if you hit him in the face. While you are blasting him, you will notice Dracula attack then teleport repeatedly. The most common attack you will see is the barrage of small fireballs. As long as you have Rapidus Fio activated, you can sprint back and forth and the fireballs will dissipate upon contact. If you choose not to use Rapidus Fio, you will dodge and destroy the fireballs, such as firing Nitesco while crouching. Another common attack is the high-low giant fireball combination, where Dracula will alternate firing high and low. The most obvious and easiest way to dodge these is to duck under the high fireballs and jump over the low ones while scooting back occasionally to account for the fireballs' acceleration (be careful not to slide!) Another attack that is a bit more difficult to dodge is Dracula's green version of Dominus Hatred - Dracula will reappear and launch the green plasma upward. The plasma will target Shanoa before it reappears, but once it does it goes straight down so it is quite dodgable. Shanoa will fall in three hits or less from any of these attacks, so heal her as needed. You will get some free hits as Dracula appears as well as during his attacks, so jump twice and hit him once on the way up and on the way down (four times total), and perhaps a couple other times if you get the opportunity during his attacks. After about a minute of constantly attacking Dracula, he will alter his set of attacks. First he will unleash the purple form of Dominus Hatred, where he will blast purple plasma into the ceiling, which will then target Shanoa as each individual blast will consecutively fall towards Shanoa - all of this while Dracula marches towards you. Running back and forth with Rapidus Fio works fine here, but if you get too close to Dracula he will attempt to axe kick Shanoa, so if you are cornered double jump over him (he won't uppercut you anymore). The next and most dangerous attack is when Dracula summons the bats. They will flow in a wave motion, so you have to scoot around to avoid getting hit. If Shanoa does get hit, she won't get knocked back or receive any invincible time, which means the subsequent hit will kill her a tenth of a second later. A way around this -which I utilized - is to use Volaticus, which will piss of Dracula and make him use his ground-blaze attack, which is may hit Shanoa (unless you move towards him) but is better than dying. Not quite as obviously dangerous is the hounds of hell attack, where Dracula will summon some shadowy wolves that run around and will keep running around until Shanoa destroys them, which can really make things hectic. As he summons them, be sure to hit them as they are appearing with Vol Luminatio, one Luminatio shot will destroy these hounds. You may get hit by a different attack when you are almost done cleaning up the hounds, but it is worth it to make sure they don't further assault Shanoa. After shooting Dracula for another minute or so, he will eventually vanish as he as apt to do, but upon reappearing he will grab Shanoa and absorb her life force. After two 'absorptions', Shanoa will almost be dead, so quickly eat a steak or equivalent from your inventory. Upon the third absorption, Dracula will drop Shanoa and she will crumple to the ground - but she will still be alive as long as you ate some food. Note that you will have to reactivate Rapidus Fio if you get hit by this attack. Whenever you see Dracula vanishes, which usually happens when you leap over Dracula, double jump towards one of the walls immediately. Dracula tends to vanish when you double jump over him. After another minute of sustained attacks on Dracula, and he will start jabbering for a bit. When Dracula is done talking, get out all three Dominus glyphs and do a glyph union to take him out for good. Congratulations! I ended up using all my steaks and a handful of other consumables, but your mileage may very. Enjoy the remaining dialogue (at least until you are forced to see that close up of Shanoa smiling and crying). FINAL APPROACH MONSTER SPECIFIC STRATEGIES: LILITH ( ): Easy to avoid or kill (weak to light). It drifts around on the ground, occasionally blowing Shanoa a kiss (hot) which will do damage unless you destroy the heart, which Rapidus Fio can also destroy of Shanoa is moving around. FINAL KNIGHT ( ): Unlike the Great Knight, there isn't really a safe way to get in close and deal damage. It is best to fire from afar with Vol Luminatio or Nitesco. If he slams his axe down, beware that a black shockwave will blast from the ground towards Shanoa. A Good deal of HP but not a big deal since Shanoa has those Miser Rings. ============================================================================= FINAL THOUGHTS [THO1] The Shanoa hard mode level one cap with a clean file is very difficult. However, once you have access to a decent amount of consumable items, the game becomes much more manageable. Top it off with the game breaking Gold Ring + Miser Rings combination and you can make a strong case that this game gets easier the farther you get. Still, this particular challenge isn't for the timid. ============================================================================= CREDITS [CRE1] 1. Darth Nemesis' awesome maps for reference. His maps make it easier to articulate locations in this faq, and was immeasurably useful for my own progress in this challenge. 2. Thanks again to Darth Nemesis for his quest guide, also on gamefaqs. 3. Another thanks to Darth Nemesis for his item guide. Without his work, the hard mode level one game is a much more painful undertaking. 4. Thanks to Sephirosuy for the tip in his FAQ on how to get a lot of gold quickly. 5. Thanks to TheVoid1 for explaining how luck effects rare drops and rare chests 6. To Gamefaqs for letting me use their legal templates and hosting my FAQ. 7. Claude Martins for his 'Speed' ascii art, found on this ascii generator website - http://www.network-science.de/ascii/ ============================================================================= LEGAL NOTICES: [LEG1] All trademarks and copyrights contained in this document are owned by their respective trademark and copyright holders. This 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. Copyright 2009 Michael Redding. Micskill@gmail.com</p>