If I were four white mages, I'd never leave my room...
is, in FinalFantasyOne
, when you try to beat the game using, surprisingly enough, four white mages. It's considered the hardest party combo to beat the game with, and with some justification: white mages have little to no offensive skills whatsoever, except versus undead. Here are my thoughts on it and related parties:
- Four WhiteMage?s: As mentioned above, white mages have little in the way of offensive value. This makes actually killing enemies more an exercise in patience and cheese than anything else. Why? In FinalFantasyOne, unlike D&D, there is no 5% chance of hitting, regardless of armor class. Therefore, by repeatedly casting RUSE, INVS, and INV2, you can make your party impossible to hit. Then, you simply hold down the attack button and heal if the enemy uses magic against you. This strategy works well against most bosses from the Marsh Cave on, although until you get the White Shirt and Defense it is too expensive in magic to use against everyday enemies.
- Hardest battle: the wizards guarding Astos's crown. At this point, you don't have INV2, since you can't yet get to Crescent City. Therefore, you need to keep casting RUSE and INVS and hope that the wizards don't kill too many of your warriors before you become unhittable. Luckily, these wizards know no magic, so once you have become unhittable, killing them is simply an exercise in patience.
- Helpful Tactics: Besides the INVS trick, it is useful to level up after having killed the wizards, so that you can go to Crescent City and pick up some 5th level magic before the Earth Cave. The best place I've found to do this is in the treasure room in Astos's castle. The chests there are guarded by undead. You have a party of White Mages, armed with HARM spells. You figure it out.
- The final descent: The first time you go down, be very careful. Before you get Masamune, you don't have much in the way of offense, so fighting the fiends can be tough. On the other hand, you should have enough FADE to at least deal with the fiend of water. It is also helpful to use the White Shirt and Defense to make yourself unhittable, then use the Heal Staff and Heal Helmets to restore your HP to full after every battle, in order to save on magic. On the plus side, you have enough LIFE to keep on as long as least one Light Warrior survives, and you have EXIT once you get Masamune. Once you find Masamune, the second descent is easier, since your combined attack power has increased greatly.
- The final battle: For Chaos, because he uses so many spells, especially CUR4, the normal methods for dealing with bosses won't work. On the other hand, you now have a decently useful attack spell against him: FADE. Just keep casting until he dies, and hope he doesn't cast CUR4 when you are low on magic.
- Four ThieF?s: This game basically has three stages. In the first (up till about Earth Cave), you masquerade yourself as a party of four (weak) fighters, and learn to run away when necessary. Then, in the Ice Cave, you run continuously and never fight a battle that you can't avoid until you reach the Floater because you're basically pathetic. Then, after class change, you suddenly become decent again, so you can go back and (with the aid of FAST) complete the game, occasionally cursing the fact that you have very little in the way of healing. Luckily, the Heal * items compensate for this lack to a certain extent.
- Hardest battle: Well, not a battle really, but I found the hardest part of the game was the race through the Ice Cave to retrieve the floater. Between the cockatrices and the mages and all the other things that can kill you with a failed saving throw, and the fact that your damage-dealing capabilities at this point are woefully inadequate, I had to keep retrying this part several times before I finally made it through.
- The final descent: For the most part, there's not too much to worry about here. Use the Heal Staff and any Heal Helmets you may have to keep yourself healthy as you descend, especially before facing the fiends. Since you don't have any powerful healing and you can't raise killed characters, your best best against the fiends is FAST + an all-out attack to try to kill them before they kill you. Masamune and the second Katana help a lot. I lost one character against each of the last two fiends.
- The final battle: Depending on how many characters you have at this point, this battle could be really difficult or basically trivial. Just make sure that the last character in your party is the one equipped with Masamune, to protect your damage-dealing capabilities. With two characters, I had the first one cast FAST on the second and then attack (futilely) until he died, while the second attacked all-out. The first one died after about three turns, but I was able to kill Chaos before he killed me.
- Four FighTer?s: This party made EvilSouthie lose quite a bit of respect for his usual party of a fighter, a black belt, a white mage and a black mage. This group is likely the easiest of the fourclasschallenges. Admittedly it's a little expensive outfitting everybody, and you should throw away some of the armor so you'll be able to pick up treasure. And you can't revive characters, so you should build up levels a lot before the final descent. But other than that, this was quite easy. You can skip most of the time spent leveling up that people use for other parties. I spend a little time fighting at the elves for money, some time in the Giant's passage in the earth cave because I think it's fun, and after I got prorings I went back to the ice cave and leveled like mad. You take virtually no damage from physical attacks for most of the game until the enemies catch up to your armor. All four of your characters can do tons of damage. You have lots of hp. There really aren't very many problems with this group.
- My thoughts on this were similar, except that I didn't do any leveling beyond what I got normally from fighting through all the dungeons. But then, I rarely spend much time leveling up anyways (except before Marsh Cave and with exceptionally weak parties, and when I am trying to max out my stats just because. -- AlexWilkins
- Hardest battle: Um... I took two tries to get the floater, because a pack of mages ambushed me. That's about all that bothered me.
- It took me more, because I saved the game right before going in and I kept getting stoned by large packs of cockatrices and I only had 2 Soft potions. So I went back to Elf Town, bought like twenty more, and never used a single one. See, it Soft is not only a stoning antidote, it's also a repellent.
- The one monster who I didn't defeat was WarMech?. I ran into him the first time I was in Sky Castle, and he just tore through my party -- 200 damage per warrior per round kills just about anyone pretty quickly. His armor was good enough that I just couldn't seem to damage him (of course, I hadn't gone back for Xcalibur, either).
- Final descent: I didn't have any problems with this because fighters have 999 hp when they're level 50 (Incidentally, fighting the Eye in the Ice Cave repeatedly wearing ribbons, the Aegis shield, and prorings makes leveling very, very easy). They never went below 800 except for one hit from the Air fiend. A level 50 fighter with the Masamune does around 1,000 damage a round on average. It wasn't that hard.
- The only thing that could possibly hurt a party of four fighters in the descent are the sorcerers at the end, since ProRings? and Ribbons only seem to protect against the spell Rub, not against the side-effect of their attack. On the other had, being short one warrior (or two, or three) won't really be much of a hindrance against Chaos.
- Four RedMage?s: Four red mages provide the most balanced party of any of these challenges, since red mages are so versatile. I found the early and middle parts of the game to be somewhat easier than with a normal party, since basically your red mages can just imitate a normal party (with more healing, however). On the other hand, in the end game the red mages lose some of their power, since you can't use the most powerful spells, weapons, or armor (except for Masamune, of course). Still, quite easy, and probably the best choice for someone who wants to play a challenge game that doesn't require any changes in strategy from a normal game.
- Hmmm... on playing it through the second time, I realized I played much like I had a party of four thieves, except with a number of extra healing potions each time. For the most part, magic just isn't worth using, even though RedMage?s are much weaker in melee. You just need to use your HealStaff? and HealHelmets? more after each battle, and if a warrior dies, it's no big deal.
- Hardest Battle: I don't remember any particular difficulties anywhere. As I said, this is basically just like playing a normal game. The fact that any member of your party can cast LIFE makes it a lot easier.
- Final Descent: Just before my first trip back 1000 years, I got my party completely destroyed and annihilated by the most dangerous enemy in the FinalFantasyOne game: the dreaded PowerOffWithoutReset?. That's why I now play all my FinalFantasyOne on an emulator.
- Now, having beaten it on the aforementioned emulator, I will note that the final descent, while not as trivial as it would be with a party of fighters or black belts, isn't very hard either. I went down, got Masamune, saved, went down again, and killed Chaos. The only thing you need to worry about are parties of dragons (frost or gas) who get the first attack on you during the initial ascent. Most of the fiends, although annoying the first time through, are fairly easy once you have Masamune. FAST is very helpful, as are repeated applications of INV2. Chaos himself wasn't too bad, although it is annoying having only one character who can do a reasonable amount of damage. On the other hand, even dealing out only 200-500 points a turn, if Chaos can't hit you, you have plenty of time to cast CUR3.
- Four BlackMage?s: Similar to Four BlackBelt?s (below) in that you have a lot of offensive power but little defense. On the other hand, your offensive capabilities are somewhat limited by the number of spells you can memorize, so must dungeons will take multiple trips to clear. You do have slightly better defense, with the ability to equip gloves and the two ProCapes?. Also, enough Warps can duplicate the effect of an Exit spell, so you can retrieve Masamune before making another trip down to kill Chaos.
- Hardest Battle: Kraken in the Temple of Fiends. The first time you face her, she's weak against Lit3?. The second time, she isn't, and one attack will kill one of your characters. Even Chaos doesn't do that (in the ToF?, Tiamat didn't attack me either time I faced her). I faced her about 6 times, and only escaped once without losing a character. Basically, it's a matter of hoping that Nuke does enough damage to take her about before she gets it in her mind to attack.
- Honorable mention: Tiamat in the Sky Castle. I decided that the easiest way to take her, since she isn't weak against any of the elemental spells and I way only level 23 (no level-8 spells yet) would be to use FAST and TMPR to up the power of my Catclaw, then attack her. By the time I had inflicted about 200 points of damage, she had killed my first three characters and reduced the last one to 80 hit points. I decided 'to hell with it' and cast BANE. It worked. I was rather surprised.
- You mean BREAK, or whatever it's called? (obviously not BREAK...) I hear she's vulnerable to that, too...
- Supposedly she is vulnerable to BRAK, yes, but this time I did get her with BANE. I was severely cash-strapped at the time, so my only 7th level spell was ICE3. As a side-note, I did try to kill her with BANE and BRAK in the ToF?, but it didn't work in the first round and she didn't seem to pose any immediate danger so I just went ahead and killed her with Masamune.
- Final Descent: Much harder than any of the previous dungeons. I was level 23 the first time I entered the ToF? Revisited, two levels before I first received level 8 spells. I was level 43 when I finally defeated Chaos. The real problem is a lack of hit points combined with the fact that your only effective attacks against the fiends are NUKE and Masamune. Lich's NUKE stands a very good chance of killing a <L30 black mage; similarly with Kary's attacks. But you can't really use NUKE against them if you want to have any left for Chaos. Kraken is mentioned above; I did use NUKE on her. Tiamat just casts spells instead of attacking; because of this you have enough time to FAST up a mage to attack with Masamune. The first time I faced Chaos I had 3 mages left (lost one to Kraken). He had killed two of my warriors; I had inflicted about 1975-1990 points of damage (out of 2000) and was out of level 7 and 8 spells with my remaining character. Then he cast the most devastating spell in his arsenal: CUR4. The next time I faced him I didn't use NUKE against Lich or Kary, and I didn't lose a character to Kraken (she cast Ink and I killed her before she got a second turn), so he was fairly easy.
- Four BlackBelt?s: The best defense is a good offense. Really. At least you'd better hope so, because that's all you've got. On the other hand, in this case it's good enough. Frankly, four black belts make about as much of a challenge as four fighters did. Basically, any group of four or less creatures (excepting Chaos, but including the four fiends) will die in one turn at the hands of four attacking MasTer?s. If you reach 50th level, Chaos might fall in one round as well. And they're cheap to maintain. I've heard it said that the easiest party to win with is three black belts and a white/red mage, and I'm inclined to believe it. About the only bad thing about this party was having to restock on Cure potions after every dungeon.
- Hardest Battle: Astos, because it was the last battle I wielded a weapon in (before getting Masamune). I didn't realize that at that point I got more attacks bare-handed than I did with a weapon. Although I did get blind-sided a couple of times in the ice cave by Mages and Sorcerers.
- Side note: Eye farming is fun and easy, and much more profitable than looting musty old treasure chests. I mean, it's not as if you could use what's in them, is it?
- Final Descent: Basically trivial. I forgot to heal up before fighting Chaos and still defeated him without losing a character. Yawn.
Having now beaten all six combinations, I'm going to have to try something new. Maybe actually beat FinalFantasyThree. Or buy a PlayStation and try Seven through Eleven. Or maybe document exactly which pairs of chests are linked. -- AlexWilkins
For those of you who think this page doesn't present enough of a challenge, a new breed has arisen: the OneCharacterChallenge?. That's right, you get one character. One fighter, one black belt, one white mage... done by having the other three characters be killed in the first imp fight. All combinations are possible and have been done (at the very least, fighter, black belt, white mage and red mage have walkthroughs, so they've been done. Thief and black mage had a few doubters, but it sounded like they had been done by somebody). I'm doing the fighter challenge at the moment.
- Fighter has now been done. It isn't terribly difficult (I'd judge it as easier than four black or white mages, anyway); you just need to be paranoid about creatures that stun, paralyze, sleep, stone, or kill you instantly (even more than usual). The lack of power or versatility is partially compensated for by the fact that you gain levels extremely quickly and that the fixed loot from treasure chests is worth more (because it doesn't need to be divided between characters). Your lone character will thus be a decent bit more powerful than a single character from a four-character party at an equivalent point in the game. As a side note, I scummed levels for stats bonuses just because I wasn't sure how tough this challenge would be, but I don't think that that was truly necessary.--AlexWilkins
- After a large pause, one red mage has now been done as well. After you get the Masamune and FAST yourself, Chaos dies in four rounds. The most difficult fight in the final descent was actually the water fiend before getting Masamune; once you have that sword, everything becomes much easier.--AlexWilkins
- One black belt finished; very similar to one fighter except with less gold and more levels. Chaos died in three rounds (at level 45).
- One white mage finished. Not too difficult, though there are a few monsters which require application of specific spells (Astos and MUTE, for example). Oh, and you have to hope that Chaos doesn't succeed with SLO2, otherwise you can't do enough damage with one attack / round to kill him before he heals again, even with 9 castings of FADE.
- One thief finished. The first part of the game was really, really annoying--I had to level to 25 or so to defeat Astos. Once you get the floater, though, and class change, things become much, much easier--FAST, much improved attack (Ice Sword), and much improved defense (fire armor/shield, silver helmet). The extra hit points are nice, too, since you lack healing. Chaos was fairly easy--RUSE, RUSE, RUSE, FAST, attack, attack, attack (CUR4), attack, attack, attack (die).
Holy geez, something Alex actually updates! Hi former suitee! --N
Four white mages? It'll never work