The Pointy Hat is a mystic headgear in Final Fantasy XII that boosts the wearer's Magick Resist by 6 and Magick Power by 2, and in the Zodiac versions, MP by 16. It is the third weakest mystic hat in the game, but available since the beginning as a steal from the desert wolves, and so could be the player's first mystic hat.
In the original PlayStation 2 version, the Pointy Hat is sold for 300 gil in Barheim Passage before obtaining the Treaty-Blade, Rabanastre after leaving Barheim Passage, Dalmasca Westersand after the Leviathan but before obtaining the Treaty-Blade, Nalbina Fortress, Bhujerba, and Dreadnought Leviathan. It is also rarely stolen from Wolf anywhere, and from the Alpha Wolf on the Dalmasca Estersand. These enemies are available since the start of the game, and Vaan starts with Steal, meaning a lucky player could procure the Pointy Hat early on.
The Pointy Hat is sold for 300 gil in Barheim Passage, and afterward also in Rabanastre and Nalbina Fortress. It is found as a treasure in Barheim Passage's Op Sector 29 (75% chance to appear, 40% chance for gil, 50% chance the item treasure is the Pointy Hat without the Diamond Armlet equipped), and Op Sector 36/37 (80% chance to appear, 30% chance for gil, 50% chance the item treasure is the Pointy Hat without the Diamond Armlet equipped), Phon Coast's The Vaddu Strand (always appears as part of the unusual treasure formation), as well as in the Trial Mode Stage 4 with the Diamond Armlet equipped.
The Pointy Hat is the third weakest mystic hat, giving 6 Magick Resist and 2 Magick Power, as well as 16 MP in the Zodiac versions. Mystic armor offer magick-related bonuses that affect all types of magickal actions, from casting black magick to damage an enemy, to casting white magick to heal the party. Magick Power is also a factor when determining damage dealt by katana, staves, and maces.
In the Zodiac versions, White Mage, Red Battlemage, Black Mage, and Bushi can equip it. If the player starts Vaan, Balthier or Fran in any of the aforementioned jobs, the Pointy Hat can be worthwhile. In the original version, party members can wear any equipment piece and the HP-boosting light armor and Strength-boosting heavy armor are likely better suited in this early point over mystic armor.
The hat can be rarely stolen from the wolves on the Estersand, and Vaan starts with Steal, and so it is potentially available early and the preceding mystic hats, Cotton Cap and Magick Curch, could be skipped in favor of the Pointy Hat. In The Zodiac Age version, the player can also try their hand at the Trial Mode at any time and bring the spoils to the main game, and so they could reach Stage 4 to open the treasure there with the Diamond Armlet (itself a treasure in Stage 1) with just Vaan, or possibly with Vaan and Penelo when she joins in the early game.
Behind the scenes
The Pointy Hat appears in the Vaddu Strand treasure formation in the Zodiac versions, whose placement and contents are unusual compared to other treasures in the game, including items like Teleport Stones and Braid Wool not normally found in treasures. This is a clue that this set of treasure chests holds a secret. Taking the first Japanese character/syllable of each treasure going east to west produces portions of the Japanese names for Great Crystal, Pharos - First Ascent, and Skyferry, the locations of the three strongest invisible weapons and shield: Gendarme, Great Trango and Seitengrat, respectively. The hint is lost in the English localization of the game.
Pointed hats have been a distinctive item of headgear of a wide range of cultures throughout history. Though often suggesting an ancient Indo-European tradition, they were also traditionally worn by women of Lapland, the Japanese, the Mi'kmaq people of Atlantic Canada, and the Huastecs of Veracruz and Aztec (illustrated e.g. in Codex Mendoza). In modern context, pointed hats are associated with witches and wizards from popular culture.