More Dragon's Den Edit
Save the game after killing Red, and switch to Party 1. Follow the same path 2 took to where Red Dragon was, but instead of walking up the stairs, go south instead. Take the east path when you arrive at a junction, and keep on moving that way until you hit a wall. Ignore the switch here and go south to find a near-purposeless Teleport Stone in a chest. Run back to the switch and step on it to clear the path near you of that stray rock, then switch to Party 2. Guide them along the same path that Group 1 took, and run up the newly opened passageway onto the pressure pad. Take up Party 1 again, and take the right path, the one that was just opened. Take this pathway all the way onto a new screen (Looks like the inside of the Zone Eater), then turn left at the next intersection and walk along until you see a door that leads to the second save point room. We don't need it, seeing how we left Party 3 behind at the last one, but it doesn't hurt anyone.
Time for Party 2 to move. Take them north into a new screen, and move them around in a backwards C shape until they come to a dead end. Then switch back to team 1. From the save room, exit and go left to find a door that leads out to a new area with a bridge spanning two nearby ledges. Run west to find a switch that the other guys at the dead end can leap across. Get a hold of them, take them over, then switch back. With your stronger team now in possession, return to the last cave you were in (where the save point room was), run down the stairs, head east along the new path across a bridge. Hop across two chests at the bridge's end, then follow the path around to jump across the second chest, but in a northerly direction this time. When you reach land, you'll have two options consisting of a westward march along another bridge, and a doorway that leads to a dead end. Walk on the bridge, then save. Why? People-pushing train conductors, that's why.
Avoid the first guard by jumping down onto his bridge while he's over on the west end, then walk down the stairs on the right. They take you back to the stepping stone chests, where a Celestriad awaits you in a closed box. Yaay! I only ever got one! This means a lot if you brought more than one mage along with you in the team. Head back up to the pushy guys in green, and let one shove you over the side. Ahh, memories....
The place we land in is infested with boss monsters, each represented by a blue flame. We have to fight through each of them to get back to the upper floor, and every time you get pushed off, you'll be forced into fighting them again. I sent you here because these are unique enemy monsters that each fill out a slot in the bestiary, and they can't be fought elsewhere. That, and I'm responsible for taking photos of these things for the wiki, so duty personally lead me here. Nope, no treasure or abilities to be found down here, just five monsters who never did anything to harm you. If you don't like killing things just for the hell of it, then I guess you came to the wrong place. Follow the path until you come across the first blue flame. You can save if you like, but the chances of you dying here are probably less than having the entire team contracting Smallpox.
|Boss Fight: Earth Eater|
Earth Eater has only one move normally, unnamed attack. It's actually extremely powerful (1600 and up damage on one person), but not the big issue here. The true problem is his counter, a Megaton Punch that he will always use when attacked by anything. Cast Quick followed by a few Ultimas to end his life before he can mangle you with his incessant countering.
You could use the Master Scroll+Fixed Dice combo also, but that relies mostly on good fortune. Guess it doesn't matter that much - we do have arise after all.
That sucked pretty hard. Wonder if the next one will be any better? Run along the path until you find a four-way split in the path, and take the northeast one to find our next target.
|Boss Fight: Malboro Menace|
A little harder this time, but still falls under the Easy umbrella. This measly guy will spawn two Malboros after dying, and then another four after those two die. Kill all seven of them, and you win. But don't worry, this fight still isn't that hard. Each incarnation can use Bad Breath, which will only be a problem if all four people are affected by it. Diabolic Whistle is similar, dealing four random status effects to the team like Phantom Train once did. This fight is made painfully easy if you came with Ribbons on everyone, mostly because every Malboro's strength lies in its ability to inflict enough ailments on you to completely stop you form taking action against them. These guys do have Blaster though, which they can use to counter any attack that hits them 33% of the time. That's probably the worst thing they can do to you. Cast a few Ultimas, and they die like everyone else caught in the blue wave of energy.
Return to the intersection, and take either of the south paths - they both lead to the same blue flame.
|Boss Fight: Gargantua|
It can use Evil Eye to slow, a physical attack with high damaging output, and Graviga. It's also got Quake, but since he has next to no magical power, it will do jack shit. Ultima it until dead. Won't be long.
Continue walking the path you're on, which merges with the one that the Malboro Menace could found on. Number 4's hanging around the northwest part of this intersection; let's go have a little chat with him.
|Boss Fight: Dark Behemoth|
The big bad Behemoth kicks things off with Mighty Guard, as if that would make any difference. Then he spends theremainder of the battle attacking and heaving for impressive damage. The only thing worth worry is his Meteor (or Ultima), which he casts upon his death. Cast Reraise on the entire team to survive the spell, and you'll do just that when you're through Ultima-ing him.
Take the northeastern path from the intersection to find the fifth and final boss of the floor. Are you ready for the hardest battle yet? Prepare to be disappointed.
|Boss Fight: Abyss Worm|
I don't even want to bother with this bullshit. He's a bit like Gargantua: plenty of cool attacks, but no magic power to back it up. So weak that even the regular enemies here could kick its ass. Which they probably do.
Take the path all the way to the exit, depicted as a ray of light shining down from the ceiling. It takes us back up the bridges again, just before the chest stepping stones. Jump across to where the shoving men are, and save the game. We don't want to wind up down there again, right? At the first jump, go as far west as you're allowed, and wait for the green guy to walk as far right as he can go. Once you're safe to the far left, jump on the next section of bridge, and save again. We want to go right this time, and after that, you'll come across two patrolling conductors in a row. This is the last one you ever have to do, but it's probably the hardest to pull off. Disregard the upper one of the two bridges, as it goes nowhere. We need to jump onto the closer bridge, run to the left, and jump on the smaller one below it to work around the patrolling guard. Once you do that, you can jump on the bridge to the south and head up, putting this nasty avoidance business behind us.
Take the Elixir from the chest, walk up the stairs, and turn right to find more stairs. At the top, take the X-Ether from the chest and continue along the prescribed path to your right. It takes us to a rather large tower, and at its crest is the next member of the dragons eight. Been a while, hasn't it? Before you decide to fight it, put ribbons on all of your characters, and have Party 3 save the game again. Place everyone in the back row, make sure someone on the team knows Rasp or Osmose at the very least, and walk up to the guy.
|Boss Fight: Skull Dragon, Second Encounter|
Let's get one thing straight off the bat: the HP doesn't matter. Skull Dragon will regenerate like a real zombie when his HP is completely removed, so that isn't the way to kill him. Instead, we must blast away 14,000 points of MP to truly kill the beast. Under any other circumstances I'd give this battle an easy rating, but it takes a long time to get through all that MP with just Rasp and Osmose. If you tried the rasp/osmose technique already on such enemies as Magic Master, then this should be a snap. That guy had 50,000 MP, and Skull Dragon has less than a third that amount.
Skull Dragon is still the king of status ailments, and uses Disaster, Bio, and Will o' the Wisp like he did the last time in Kefka's Tower. He also has the new 'Fear' ability, which inflicts zombie, and Level 5 Death - but you already know what that does. If you have those ribbons I asked for on everyone, and if no one has a level divisible by 5, then Skull Dragon can barely hurt you at all. Only Bio and a physical can do much damage to you, and even then it's not a fearsome amount. Float your way to victory with a barrage of Rasp spells, and also Osmose when your MP starts to run dry. Doesn't sound too hard, right? Just be sure to heal often, since Skully counters most spells that target him with a physical attack that can exceed 1500 HP on the right person.
The Skull Dragon has been slain!
Took ya long enough! For killing the skeleton dragon, we get the Scorpion Tail, Gogo's best weapon. Some stairs also appear, allowing us to walk back down to the area before the pushy green train conductors. Run back over the chests to the save point on the other side of the room, and walk through the left door to the room where Party 2 is still waiting after all this time. Getting bored there, huh fellas? Run right from the door, then north (past the weight which does nothing when pushed onto the switch, but you might want to do it anyway in case it opens something up) to find a door that's been unblocked by the death of Skull Dragon. Before moving through it, continue to the right and examine the area between the two lava pools. This will allow you access to the next dragon. Now take the path previously blocked by a seal of darkness, which takes you to an area with different furnishings to the ones we're accustomed to in this dungeon, kind of like the interior of a castle.
The path splits in three here, with the left leading to a Magus Robe, and the right leading to dragon number... I've lost count.
|Boss Fight: Holy Dragon, Second Encounter|
Holy Dragon makes itself independent by "calling on heavenly aid" and having Curaga as a bloody counter, one cast of which can heal him for 6000. That means that we either have to outdo the boss's healing rate by hitting for over 6000 HP in a single attack (possibly more, since he as auto-regen as well) or we can take the cheap method of casting reflect on him so that every cast of curaga will bounce onto one of our party members. Now which should I choose...
Like everyone else, Holy Dragon will attack with a potent arsenal of overpowered attacks: Holy and Saintly Beam are both holy-based attacks, one doing high damage to one person, the other doing similar damage to the team. Minerva Bustiers, the Paladin Shield and Cat Ear-Hood are the only items that can absorb/resist this element, so having at least two of the mages here really does help. Heavenly Wrath is just an amplified physical attack, and Heartless Angel... boy, these bosses love a bit of Heartless Angel, don't they? The obvious path you should take after getting hit with that is an immediate Curaga, but there's always the danger that HD will cast Saintly Beam right after using it, which means that there's not a chance in hell that you can survive it. Hope that you won't have to see it, but since you should be saving with Party 3 after and before every battle, it shouldn't matter if you get killed anyway. Simply load up the game, and try again.
Holy Dragon doesn't have a weakness, so you know what that means: Ultima. I'm getting tired to death of typing it in, but that's generally the only stratagem we have. Cast the strongest spell at one eightieth the cost, and watch your enemies die before your eyes. The medium rating's really only a courtesy, since there's a mild chance of us being killed here.
The Holy Dragon has been slain!
And we get Cyan's ultimate Katana, the Zanmoto, and the Holy Seals are removed, and I'll see you on the next page.