2. General hints and tips
The suggestions written in this page will be more clear as you play the game and understand what they actually mean.
Abbreviations, Names and Synonyms
When I say "Throwable Items" I mean the category of weapons that fall under the "Throwable Weapons" group. These are the throwable items associated with the Grenade Box. Most of these items are Grenades, or grenade-like items like Molotov Cocktails. For this reason, Grenade and Throwable Item can be synonymous with each other, and synonymous with Throwable Weapon.
You will learn this as "special vocabulary" of the Story walkthrough page, but just to be clear: "Pistol character" is an abbreviation for "Pistol-wielding character". If I say "perform a Machinegun Hero Action", this means "perform a Hero Action with the character who is equipped with the Machinegun".
"Rubies" is the name given to the money value of this game.
For info on the meaning of the following words, check the Basel page: Terminals, Terminals Effect, Terminal Effect Net, Elevator/Core Lift, Special Battles, Energy Hexes (A--J), [Color] Energy Hexes.
The name of some dropped items (and also those of a couple of Custom Parts) contain letters of the Greek alphabet. In particular, they can contain the letters "alpha", "beta" or "gamma". I will write these letters respectively: [Alpha], [Beta] and [Gamma]. This should help you find them in the page with the CTRL+F function (it's easier to type this than typing the character for Greek alphabet letters).
The Bezels are those orange "things" in the bottom-center part of the battle screen. They're explained in-game as you play. The various amounts of Bezels you have represents your "Bezel Gauge", alias "Hero Gauge", and it allows you to perform Hero Actions. The official name is "Hero Gauge" anyway.
"AP", "MC" and "HP" Rounds stand for Armor-Piercing Rounds, Metal-Coated Rounds, Hollow-Point Rounds. They are all special rounds used with the Magazine Case.
Some enemies' names contain the abbreviations "HG, MG, STG". They stand for "Handgun", "Machinegun" and "Shotgun". This is also true for some of the items for your characters: "HG High Barrel" is a High Barrel (a Custom Part; you'll learn what these things are when you play) specific for the Handgun. A "MG High Barrel" is specific for the Machinegun instead. You don't use a Shotgun, so there's nothing like STG High Barrel, but anyway.
"Pistol" is a synonym of "Handgun" in this walkthrough.
You can change the on-screen character by using LB/RB while playing. This is usually only a matter of preference to display your favourite character.
In the fights, by default your characters will act in the same order as they are in your party. The standard order is Vashyron, Zephyr and Leanne. Since most (if not all) the fights should start with the Machinegun attacks, the first character of your group should be the one wielding the Machinegun.
Vashyron should be the Machinegun-wielding character. The reason for this is that he learns useful skills for the Machinegun earlier than the other characters (more details about this in the Gameplay Mechanics page).
One of the things you learn in the early phases of the game is that the random encounters and boss fights will usually have one or more Leaders that you can kill to eliminate the entire group of enemies in front of you (the non-Leaders will flee once all the Leaders have been killed). There are two reasons NOT to perform a Leader Assault in regular fights.
First of all, although you can receive the spoils of the enemies that flee, the chances of them dropping items as they flee are considerably lower than those of them dropping items if you eliminated them directly.
The second reason is that if you eliminate the non-Leaders first, then you are bound to deal more damage. I mean, if there's a group of three enemies with one Leader, and they all have 100 HP each, of course you will deal more damage if you kill them all (100+100+100) than if you kill only the Leader (100+0+0). The Experience Points you get (the points required to level up your characters) are directly proportional to the amount of damage you deal. For this reason, a quick Leader assault means getting less Experience Points in a fight, and therefore is usually a bad idea.
There are two situations where a Leader Assault is recommended though: if the enemies are too strong or simply not worth the time to killing one by one, a Leader Assault is a preferred option.
There are several opportunities to level up, farm materials and Rubies in this game. We will analyze them better in the Gameplay Mechanics and especially in the Story walkthrough page as they come by, but here's a quick summary if you don't want to read it all/just want to have an idea:
- From Chapter 6 a trick allows you to get pretty much infinite Rubies. With infinite Rubies it'll be possible to get infinite Hand Grenades very easily
- From Chapter 16, the mission target "Elderly Man" allows you to level up the Machinegun in no time. Once killed, this target can't be respawned. You can however flee from the fight and repeat the process until you reach the maximum level (100) with the Machinegun for all your three characters
- From Chapter 16, the Arena fight of Rank 50 allows you to level up the Pistol and Throwable Items very quickly. This fight can be repeated as many times as you want
The customization opportunities can vary during the course of a playthrough. Major upgrades for the weapons should be done in Chapters around Chapter 7 and then again around Chapter 14. More details are provided in the Story walkthrough page.
There are items that allow you to increase the EXP obtained and the Item Drop Rate. These items are prizes that you can obtain from the Arena, and are respectively called EXP Trainer and Lucky Charm. These items are accessories that will stack their effect if you equip more of one of them on a character. Some Terminals can also boost the amount of EXP gained/items dropped by the enemies.
Some particularly rare items can be only obtained in limited situations. For example, the Scrapped Missile HP item is an item dropped by bosses/monsters found only once in a quest and in the Arena. Despite this, all the items dropped by unique monsters of the Arena (those that you can fight only once, such as the Rank 5-3 monster, the Rank 10-3 monster, the Rank 15-3 monster, and so on every +5 Ranks) *can* be farmed since you can usually destroy secondary parts of the enemies (without killing the enemies), exit the fight, and then fight again to repeat the process and farm what you want. The situations when this is worth doing are actually very scarce, and the previous example (the Scrapped Missile HP) is probably the only important "rare" item that you should bother farming before killing all the possible enemies that give you opportunities to farm. For a simple and average player who doesn't want any particular customization (while still getting an excellent, if not best, setup), it's actually not necessary to farm them at all. Still, you've been warned: some items may not be farmable forever.
There is no need to worry about leveling up earlier than these suggested moments, provided that you know how to play the game.
Getting More Bezels is Important
You should do all you can to increase your Bezel Gauge. The three ways of obtaining more Bezel Shards (four Bezel Shards give you +1 Bezel for your gauge) are:
- Playing through the story. Every Boss Fight earns you a Bezel Shard
- Open up specific Treasures on the World Map
- Win specific Special Battles on the World Map
The first is self-explainatory, so you can't do much to anticipate or miss them. As for the Treasures on the World Map, it's strongly advisable to check the maps provided in the Basel page of this walkthrough to see where the Bezel Shards are hidden (if there are Bezel Shards at all, that is). Once you locate a Bezel Shard, do what you can in-game to obtain it as soon as possible.
Then we have Special Battles (they are optional fights that start being available from Chapter 3). Some of them will earn you a Bezel Shard if you manage to win. The Special Battles earning Bezel Shards are usually the hardest of all, so pay attention and be careful before engaging these fights (save the game: you can't flee once you engage the fight!). The other Special Battles aren't particularly important, since they either earn you a Perfect Aid or a "Doll" item that can be traded for items that aren't anything special. It's still a good idea to fight them all to get extra experience of course.
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