final fantasy X-2 (HD Remastered)
  playstation 3 walkthrough

During the opening sequence, you are introduced to Rikku (from FFX) and Paine (a new character) in Luca’s stadium, two years after the original FFX.  Something is amiss on stage and the girls step in to fight.  

BOSS:  ???, Goons x2
During this tutorial battle, pick commands based on your characters’ initial job class - these are determined by the Dresspheres they are wearing: Rikku is wearing the Thief DS and Paine is wearing the Warrior DS. Get used to the new ATB system - you can’t sit and ponder options anymore - battles are dynamic. Have Rikku steal from all three while Paine attacks. Not too big a deal.

When you take control of of Rikku on [Dock 1], grind through weak enemies until Rikku learns ‘Pilfer Gil’ (a Flim-Flam command) and Paine learns ‘Sentinel’.  When you reach [Dock 2], look for a big Moogle crouched behind crates on the left.  Examine the Moogle to restore your HP/MP (even if you don't need to) then continue to the next dock.  After a brief scene, two sidekicks corner you and the real Yuna shows up to help.

BOSS:  Logos, Ormi
Have Rikku steal their accessories and Pilfer Gil, while Paine and Yuna attack. Work on eliminating Logos first, since he acts as a healer for the pair. Yuna’s starting job class is Gunner - select ‘Trigger Happy’ and mash R1 to rapidly shoot bullets.

Upon defeating the pair, the trickster you've been chasing reveals herself as Syndicate leader, Leblanc.  The girls retrieve Yuna’s First Steps Garment Grid (GG) and the upcoming battle shows you how to use it.

BOSS:  Leblanc
During this job-changing tutorial, press L1 to switch Yuna from Gunner (ranged) to Songstress (bard). Use Darkness Dance from her abilities list to blind Leblanc. With the affliction in place, Leblanc will resort to weak Thunder spells. Have Rikku steal Silver Bracers from Leblanc while Paine attacks. Re-instill Darkness Dance as needed.  Mission Complete!

Chapter 1 - Aboard the Celsius         

After the scenes in Luca, you’ll gain control of Yuna aboard the airship Celsius, home base of the Gullwings. Talk to all of your crewmates on the Bridge, including Paine and Rikku (sitting in the co-pilot’s chair).  Speak with Buddy (navigator) to receive an Al Bhed Primer and speak with Brother (pilot) to get 3x Al Bhed Primer - collect 26 primers to fully learn the Al Bhed language. If you’re playing the HD re-release of FFX-2, Brother also gives you the Festivalist Dressphere.

Speak with Shinra (the airship’s whiz kid) to view game tutorials, dossiers, the bestiary, and to watch all treasure spheres collected.  Specifically, watch the Journey’s Start sphere now and read the tutorial on Garment Grids to acquire the Vanguard GG.  Shinra will also explain the “Creature Creator” system for those playing the HD re-release of FFX-2. Note that wining the Standard Cup in its Fiend Arena will earn you the Psychic Dressphere.

Leave the Bridge and you’ll find a Save Point in the hall leading to an elevator.  Use it to restore the party’s HP/MP and to save your game data. Visit the other floors: Deck, Engine Room and Cabin.  There’s nothing happening on the Deck at the moment, but you can loot four chests inside the Engine Room to get 4x Potion, 3x Remedy, 4x Phoenix Down and an Ether.  Note that all chests in Spira replenish at the start of each chapter.

On the Cabin level, talk to the Barkeep (a Hypello) to purchase items and to ‘Rest’.  Make sure to rest on the airship at least once per chapter to add % completion.  As you head towards the elevator, Brother tells you to report to the Bridge; go there to trigger a scene. A map of Spira pops up, listing 15 areas the Celsius can fly to.  At the moment, travel is limited to Mt. Gagazet - click “Go” to begin the Mission “Sphere Hunt”.

Chapter 1 - Mt. Gagazet

Watch scenes on the [Upper Tier] of Mt. Gagazet’s Floating Ruins then follow Rikku and Paine to start a ‘Climbing and Jumping’ tutorial - hold Circle while moving to jump across gaps, and press Circle when near a ledge to climb. Drop down to collect a Yellow Ring then climb back up and continue following the girls.  You’ll start encountering random enemies here so use the Save Point below in case something goes wrong.  Step on the elevator platform and press the wall button to ride down to [Base].

After a shaky landing, hop down ledges and jump across the western gap to reach a chest containing an Elixir. Jump back across and climb up ledges near the broken pillar.  On top, the girls encounter Leblanc and her two henchman again.

BOSS:  Leblanc, Logos, Ormi
Steal Leblanc’s Tiara then take her out before she hastens her crew with Love Tap. Have Songstress inflict Darkness Dance to severely lower the trio’s accuracy, and use Warrior’s Power Break to reduce physical damage they impose.

After the battle, a timed mission starts (“Outrun the Leblanc Syndicate!”), giving you 6-minutes to reach the peak before they do.  The timer stops during battles and while browsing menus, thankfully.  Start by heading east. Go around the fallen pillar to get a Mega Phoenix then climb up the pillar and head west. Jump over the gap and enter the upper [Passage] to force a fight.

Inside, go north to a 3-way intersection. Activate two switches (east and west) to lower a pillar then drop down into the pit to collect a White Ring. Climb out and jump over the gap. At the next intersection, head east, jumping and climbing, until you reach an exterior ledge with a Red Ring. Re-enter the ruins and backtrack to the intersection. Once there, proceed north. Climb several ledges to get out to the upper [Base]. 

Follow the circular path west for another forced battle. When it’s over, you'll be standing on a broken pillar.  Climb the rubble on the left and head east along the lip of the ruin to find a chest containing a Star Pendant.  Now return to the broken pillar and follow it upward until a scene takes over, showing Leblanc’s crew dangling from a ledge.  If you reach this spot before time expires, you’ll find a Muscle Belt chest perched above your rivals.  Use the Save Point then ascend the eastern stairs to face a big mechanical spider.

BOSS:  Boris
If you learned the Warrior’s Armor/Power Break abilities, use them to halve Boris’ strength and defense. The Songstress’ Darkness Dance will further hurt its offense. After that, just bash the crippled bug with your swords and heal with potions. Boris has two attacks you cannot avoid even when he’s blinded. The first is Sticky End (inflicts Stop) and the other is where he swallows you. Just follow the strategy above to defeat him with ease.

Upon completing the mission, you receive the Gagazet Sphere. Leave the chamber to automatically board the Celsius.

Back on the Bridge, speak with Brother and choose to “Comfort him” (adds %). View the sphere with Shinra (called ‘Zanarkand’s Prime’ in his menu) to receive the Black Mage Dressphere. Buddy alerts you to ‘hotspots’ in Besaid and Zanarkand (a third ‘hotspot’ will appear in Kilika after clearing those two areas).  Before tackling any storyline missions, explore the rest of Spira.  Each location’s level of difficulty (1-5 stars) corresponds to the party’s current level, therefor it changes as you gain more EXP.  This guide reflects the order I chose to get 100% completion; feel free to visit areas in any order you wish:

*** Besaid Island STORY MISSION
* Kilika Island Scene / STORY MISSION
* Luca Scene, Mission (“Behind the Scenes”), Mini-Game
*** Mi’ihen Highroad Scene, Treasure
**** Mushroom Rock Road Scene, Mission (“Foggy Fiend Frenzy!”)
* Djose Temple Scene
**** Moonflow Scene, Mission (“Shave the Hypello”)
* Guadosalam Scene
**** Thunder Plains Scene, Treasure
***** Macalania Scene, Mission (“Follow That O’aka!”)
**** Bikanel Desert Scene, Mission (“Can You Dig It?”)
* Bevelle Scene
**** Calm Lands Scene, Side-Quests (Bridal, Publicity), Mini-Games
**** Mt. Gagazet Scene
**** Zanarkand STORY MISSION

After beaming down from the airship, you’re deposited on the Kilika Docks.  Jump across boats near the Save Point to get an Ether and Mana Tablet and look for more chests containing 2x Eye Drop, 2x Antidote, and a Phoenix Down as you walk along the docks.  There’s a shop on the left side, though it mostly sells the same wares as the Celsius.  Talk to the woman on the s/e dock (near some kids) about the Squatter Monkey problem in the woods - this triggers a quest later on.

In the [Residential District], climb the stairs and approach the left hut to witness a scene between Dona and Barthello, whom you may recall from FFX.  Go inside and chat with Dona then nab 1,500 Gil from her upstairs balcony.  Explore the rest of the district to find more chests containing a Lunar Curtain, Star Curtain, Light Curtain and 2x Holy Water.

On the n/e end, talk to the man peering through a camera.  Ask to use it and view Youth League Headquarters being built across the bay. Chat with him again in Chapters 3 & 5 to get a unique accessory. Ignore the guards at the gate. The man in the boat below will give you a ride back to the docks if you don’t feel like walking.

When you first enter the Calm Lands, Rikku explains that it has become an amusement park of sorts, with three hover stations offering different mini-games: Lupine Dash, Sky Slots, and Reptile Run.  Two companies (Argent, Inc. and Open Air) are competing for customers here - both companies have representatives posted in front of the hovers.

Publicity Campaign:
To start this ongoing side-quest, speak with one of the hover representatives (it doesn’t matter which one you choose) and agree to help spread the word about their company. To rack up PR points, talk to people everywhere you go using the Square button. Pick from a list of phrases to pique interest in the company.  If your pitch fails, you’ll have to wait until the next chapter to talk to the same person again. At a minimum, earn 400 PR pts. before returning here in Chapter 5.  Here's a list of people and best pitches to use:

The hover stations also offer rides for a fee and sell credits that can be traded for items (1 credit = 10 gil). If you can afford it, buy 500 credits and trade them for a Charm Bangle - invaluable for its ‘No Encounters’ ability.  Explore the Calm Lands for chests containing an Ether, 2x Chocobo Feathers, and a Phoenix Down. Visit the Travel Agency in the center to restock items and to start another ongoing side-quest.

Marriage Campaign:
Talk to the man on the right and agree to help find a wife for his shy son. Similar to the PR Campaign, press Square while talking to people in Spira and select a phrase to pique their interest in the young man. His father will reward your match-making skills in Chapter 5.  This quest is not required for 100% completion but you’ll want to finish it for the prize offered.

The old Monster Arena to the east is closed; it will serve a different purpose later on. Exit the Calm Lands via the n/e corner to arrive at a [Bridge]. The northern route leads to Mt. Gagazet (plus a chest with 2x Potions) and the eastern ramp leads down into the [Gorge].  Below, you’ll find a Save Point and a Phoenix Down to the eastThe cave opening on the left will be familiar to FFX players; ignore it for now. Here's a list of people you can pitch for both PR and Marriage Campaigns, along with best dialog choices to use:

BESAID = 30                                                                                     Option to Choose (PR / Marriage)

  • Lady outside s/e tent                                                          2 / 3                  CH3 - Lady will be inside s/e tent
  • Man inside s/e tent                                                              1
  • Shop owner in s/w tent                                                       5 / 3
  • Woman walking her dog                                                    4 / 4
  • Keepa inside n/w Crusader tent                                        1                       CH5 - Keepa will be on beach
  • Boy running around temple w/girl                                     3
KILIKA = 30 / 35                                                                               Option to Choose (PR / Marriage)
  • Guy talking to lady near ferryman (dock)                        5                       CH3 - Now guy in red shorts, upper east dock
  • Guy in blue shirt on s/e edge (dock)                                4
  • Guy with green shirt at Residential entrance                   4                       CH3 - Now with blue shirt guy / CH5 - holding balloons
  • Guy with blue shirt pacing lower west side                      5                       CH3 - Now with green shirt guy / CH5 - holding balloons
  • Guy standing near Dona’s hut, upper right                     5                       CH5 - Now holding balloons below Dona’s hut
  • Lady in blue below east bridge stairs (Residential)         2 / 3                  CH5 - Now standing on bridge
  • CH3 - New woman on upper east dock                          5 / 1                 
LUCA = 40                                                                                        Option to Choose (PR / Marriage)
  • Lady sitting alone on bench (stairs)                                  3 / 2                  CH3 - Standing on stairway bridge, left
  • Lady sitting w/guy on bench (stairs)                                 5 / 3                  CH3 - Standing on stairway bridge, right
  • Boy standing near balloon cart                                         4                       CH3 - Running and waving arms on Bridge
  • Person in brown sitting on far left bench                           5                       CH3 - Now man in yellow tunic walking by Bridge
  • Male with yellow mask walking up Stadium stairs            3                       CH3 - Now man in yellow tunic, walking by Stadium
  • Lady sitting on top bench at Stadium                               2 / 2
  • Lady with red hair walking past Dock 3                            4 / 2                  CH3 - Now standing with others on Bridge       
  • Guy in white on Dock 3                                                       1                       CH3 - Now wearing white cap on Bridge
MI’IHEN HIGHROAD = 70                                                                Option to Choose (PR / Marriage)
  • Lady in blue at Lord Mi’ihen statue (sound end)            1 / 1
  • Other lady at Lord Mi’ihen statue                                     2 / 5
  • Guy standing in east alcove                                              3
  • Female Al Bhed standing near hover                               4 / 2
  • Guy standing near east hover in Central                         2
  • Guy sitting on cliff near Agency                                        1
  • Lady sitting inside Agency, on left                                     2 / 4
  • Man sitting inside Agency, on right                                   3
  • Lady in yellow on Newroad bridge                                   4 / 1
  • Boy standing near Mushroom Rock gate                         5                       CH3 - Not there
  • Guy in purple on Oldroad path                                         2
  • Lady south of Oldroad save point                                     4 / 1
  • Top guy sitting at end of Oldroad                                     1
  • Bottom guy sitting at end of Oldroad                               3
DJOSE TEMPLE = 40                                                                         Option to Choose (PR / Marriage)
  • Lady in yellow near Save Point                                          3 / 4
  • Female Al Bhed outside dig tent                                       1 / 5
  • Man talking with old guy on left                                         2                       CH5 - Sitting outside dig tent
  • Female Al Bhed pacing on bridge                                    3 / 5                  CH5 - Standing near Highroad
  • Guy in green, on bridge                                                      5                       CH5 - Walking in circles
  • Guy in yellow, on bridge                                                     4
  • Guy in orange, on bridge                                                   1
  • Woman in purple on bridge further south                         3 / 5
MOONFLOW = 25                                                                           Option to Choose (PR / Marriage)
  • Female Al Bhed just west of Djose fork                              3 / 1                  CH2 - Unavailable during mission
  • Kid wearing gas mask near Save Point                             5
  • Kid standing near South Wharf shoopuf stairs                  5
  • Woman standing (low) on North Wharf                            5 / 4
  • Old lady near Guadosalam entrance                              1 / 5
GUADOSALAM = 25                                                                        Option to Choose (PR / Marriage)
  • Kid with helmet sitting near Inn                                          1                       CH5 - Now standing in line at Tobli’s office
  • Innkeeper (data peddler) inside the Inn                          2
  • Hypello outside Tobli’s east office                                     3                       CH3 - Now standing near locked door to the west
  • Chubby customer in Item shop                                         4
  • Shopkeeper in Item shop                                                   2
MACALANIA = 10                                                                            Option to Choose (PR / Marriage)
  • Guado standing east of Save Point                                   1                       CH5 - no longer there
  • Guado in east campsite, north of lower Spring                4                       CH5 - no longer there

Arriving on the staircase separating Mi’ihen Highroad from Luca, the Mission (“Behind The Scenes”) starts. As Yuna recalls her last visit to Luca, walk downstairs into the [Square] and a man directs you to come over. Talk to him near the balloon cart to begin a goofy task that Yuna must do alone.  While dressed in a giant moogle costume, hand out 10 balloons to folks in the square:

  • The woman dancing near the balloon cart
  • The kid looking at the statue
  • The person in brown on the far west bench
  • Two women on the bench near the statue
  • Two men seated in the n/w corner
  • The man standing at the café door
  • Two men seated inside the café - press X to open the window below the TV screen

After handing out the 10th balloon, you receive the Healing Wind GG.  Watch a few more scenes to end the mission and automatically return to the airship.  Beam back down to Luca to actually explore the city.  Go downstairs and jump over the left banister to reach a chest containing 2x Lunar Curtain. From the Square, head south.  Cross the long bridge (northern offshoot leads to Luca’s theatre; don’t waste your gil buying video clips and music used in the game). 

When you reach the front of the [Stadium], enter the basement on the right for a scene with Rin (from FFX). He tells you about a mini-game you can play in Luca, called “Sphere Break” and gives you an Al Bhed Primer. Use the Save Point here then enter the basement on the left. Ask the little beaked fellow inside to explain the Sphere Break rules to get a starter set of coins (five each): Helm CoinsZurvan Coins, Coyote Coins, and Flan Coins.  Play a practice round with him or challenge other players in the basements if you wish.

When ready, leave the Stadium and head east to [Dock 5] to find the Thunder Spawn GG tucked behind some crates.  Apart from the PR/Marriage campaigns, that's it for Luca at the moment.

Whether you beam down from the airship or take the stairs up from Luca, you’ll arrive on the [South] end of Mi’ihen Highroad.  After a brief scene, start heading north.  Although you can pay hover pilots to take you to various parts of Mi’ihen, make the journey on foot so that you don’t miss anything.  Fight enemies and scour offshoots for chests - along with many items, you’ll find 500 gil, a Circlet, and Iron Bangle.  Speak with everyone you pass, especially the Al Bhed woman standing near three small machina in [Central] - chatting with her now triggers a %-critical event in Chapter 4.

At the halfway mark, you'll find a Save Point outside Rin’s Travel Agency, which sells accessories and items. Continue north from the Agency onto [Newroad], collecting more chests as you go.  When the path opens into a clearing, ignore the n/w exit leading to Mushroom Rock.  Instead, veer s/e to explore Mi’ihen’s lower [Oldroad] section.  It’s a good place to rack up EXP. Just before reaching the Save Point, you’ll see a tiny monster wander by - yet another important event to witness.  Pitch more PR folks as you walk to the very end.

Arriving at Mushroom Rock, move forward to see Logos and Ormi walking by.  Follow them until some Youth League members stop you.  When asked, say you remember Yaibal (even if you don’t) and accept his challenge.  Before following Clasko (from FFX), head north and enter the alcove on the left.  Step on the stone pad to ride up to a chest holding 1,000 Gil.  Return to the [Ravine] entrance and speak with Clasko about his love for chocobos. Afterwards, enter the Ravine to start the Mission “Foggy Fiend Frenzy!”

Ride up and follow the winding path, killing any fiends that get in your way.  Areas with dark fog hide tougher enemies so be prepared.  Continue to tail Logos and Ormi, dropping down into the crevasse when they do, and moving towards the red arrow on your mini-map.  Below, nab a Turbo Ether and further along, look for chests containing a Phoenix Down and Hi-Potion.

Use the Save Sphere then go through the hole behind it. After cornering Ormi and Logos, you receive Crimson Sphere 9. Examine the ornate door in front of you - it will open once you’ve acquired all ten Crimson Spheres.  On your way out, you’ll bump into Maroda (from FFX) who explains that the sealed entrance leads to the Den of Woe.  When the scene ends, backtrack out of the crevasse and continue along the upper road to a lift pad.  Ride up to meet Elma and complete the mission, earning you the Heart of Flame GG.

Before riding the big elevator platform up, head south to a chest containing a Favorite Outfit accessory. Ascend and move forward to [Youth League Headquarters].  There’s a Save Point here and a narrow path on the right leading down to a Restless Sleep GG chest. After collecting it, hop back up and approach the big tent to trigger a scene with Lucil, another Chocobo Knight from FFX.  Speak with her twice to learn about Nooj, the Youth League’s leader, who is indisposed at the moment.

Speak with the old man sitting to the right of the tent; FFX players will recognize him as Maechen, the long-winded scholar. Listen to all of his ramblings without interrupting (DO NOT press any buttons) and agree to shake his hand when he’s finished - this event is critical to achieving 100%.

Re-board the Celsius and immediately beam back down to Mushroom Rock Road.  Talk to Clasko, who is sulking on the right.  Allow him to board the airship when he asks.  Back on Celsius, you’ll find Clasko in the Cabin’s upper bedroom, reeling from motion sickness.  Talk to Clasko then return to the Bridge.  Speak with Shinra to view the Crimson Sphere you just found - it’ll be listed as ‘Crimson Report 1’ under his Treasure Sphere menu. 

Beam down to the Save Point in front of Djose Temple. Grab a Phoenix Down to the west then stand in line at the registration tent.  Move up as people thin out and, once inside, tell the man behind the counter that you want to dig.  Now enter Djose Temple to meet Gippal, leader of the Machine Faction, who will give you an
Al Bhed Primer.  Before following Gippal, enter the [Living Quarters] on the left to collect an Echo Screen.

Leave the Temple and head south until you find Gippal. During the scene, tell him "We're sure" to get the Letter of Introduction that allows you to dig in Bikanel. Continue south on [Pilgrimage Road] to nab 2x Potion.  Further south is a fork leading to Moonflow and Mushroom Rock.  Lest you trigger an event out of sequence, use Djose’s Save Point to re-board the Celsius.  Having received the letter from Gippal, a new ‘hotspot’ will appear in Bikanel Desert (see entry, below).

Starting on the [South Bank] of Moonflow, head east to trigger a scene with Tobli, the little man dressed in red.  Agree to help find his assistant. Go south until you hear someone cry out for help. Talk to Tobli’s assistant (a Hypello) near the chocobo cart. Agree to escort him back to Moonflow to begin the Mission “Shave the Hypello?”

Stay close to the cart as it wheels along the road.  Every so often, waves of bandits will try to steal trunks off the cart.  Press X to tag them before they reach the cart or chase them down to retrieve a stolen trunk. Defeat the bandits and make sure all five trunks make it back safely with the cart to get full % completion.  In doing so, Tobli gives you the Gun Mage Dressphere, Helios Guard GG, and a Circlet.

Heading west from the Save Point, you’ll find a Shoopuf that you can ride to reach Moonflow’s [North Wharf].  Apart from PR/Marriage folks to talk to, nothing is happening there at the moment; continuing north takes you the entrance of Guadosalam.

In Guadosalam, you’ll discover Seymour’s old house is now a [Chateau] controlled the Leblanc Syndicate.  Currently, goons prevent you from entering.  Hike up to the Farplane in the s/e corner for a scene.  Although you are barred from entry here, too, the event adds % completion. On the upper left side of Guadosalam, you’ll find a locked door (just note it for later) and in the center, a shop selling decent wares. The s/w exit leads to the Thunder Plains.  Travel there on foot or fly by airship when you’re ready.

Watch a scene as you arrive on the [South] end of the Thunder Plains and count your blessings that you no longer have to dodge lightning bolts while here.  Use the area to gain EXP and collect treasure - as you head north, look for chests holding 3x Echo Screen, 2x Potion, and a Black Choker.

There’s a Travel Agency in the center of the plains (n/w exit), as well as a Save Point. After shopping and saving, proceed to the [North] half of the Thunder Plains. Look for three more chests on this end containing a Phoenix Down, 2x Grenade, an an Ether.  During random encounters, bold chocobos may appear - later, you’ll be able to catch and train them.  For now, continue north into Macalania Woods.

Arriving on the south end of Macalania Woods, move forward to hear Bayra, the wise harpist from FFX, mention that the woods are dying.  Do not follow him up the crystal path yet; first, head east past some Guados (and Bevelle soldiers), veering south when you can to reach the [Spring]. Approach the water for a scene with Donga (a drummer) then backtrack to the Save Point.

Now follow the crystal path up and around to [Lake Road], collecting a Turbo Ether along the way.  When you reach the road, take the s/w offshoot into [North Woods]. Proceed along the tree branches, fighting random enemies, until you find the little horn player, Pukutak.  Now backtrack to [Lake Road] via the branches and take the n/e offshoot to the other side of the [Spring].  Once there, approach Tromell Guado (from FFX) for a scene.  When it ends, speak with Tromell four times to get Paine’s special Full Throttle Dressphere and the Unerring Path GG.

After this, return to Lake Road and head n/w to reach Macalania’s Travel Agency. Approach the Al Bhed in front to initiate a scene, during which you’ll receive an Al Bhed Primer.  O’aka (merchant extraordinaire) arrives and quickly dashes into the woods.  Grab a Hi-Potion from the chest next to the Agency then return to Lake Road to find O’aka.  Follow him to start the Mission “Follow That O’aka!”

Head south, moving along the branches until you spot O’aka hiding behind a big tree.  Press X to reveal him then continue to give chase.  Try to speak with O’aka further south and he’ll run off again.  In the [Central] woods, grab a White Ring from the chest and continue down to the Save Point.  Once there, you’ll see O’aka heading east. After passing the Bevelle guards, veer north into a small campsite.  Press X near the left edge to finally nab O’aka. Choose to hide him on the airship and you’ll receive the Ice Queen GG.  Mission complete!

Back on board the Celsius, you’ll find O’aka selling his wares in the Cabin.  Keep buying items from O’aka until you’ve paid off his entire 100,000 gil debt. Do so before Chapter 3 starts - it’s required for 100% and well worth the effort.

Beam down to Bikanel for a scene.  When it ends, follow Rikku across the dunes, fighting random enemies, until the girls pass out. Upon waking, you’ll be inside the Machine Faction’s [Excavation Camp] and receive an Al Bhed Primer.  This is as far as you'll get without the ‘Letter of Introduction’ (received from Gippal in Djose).

Assuming you have the letter, approach Rikku and Paine to learn that a giant sandstorm makes it impossible to leave camp.  The chest on the left is locked, but there’s a vendor next to the Save Point if you want to buy supplies.  Ask the hover pilot if you can dig; apparently, you can’t fly anywhere without Nhadala’s permission.  To prompt her arrival, speak with two guys next to the pilot.  When Nhadala shows up (a blonde Al Bhed), give her the Letter of Introduction to start the Mission “Can You Dig It?”

Ask the pilot to fly you to the [Western Expanse]. A tutorial explains how the digging mini-game in Bikanel works:  When you arrive at a site, a timer will start. Yellow X’s on the mini-map denote mission-critical items and white X’s mark spots where treasure, gil, or enemies reside. A yellow square shows the hover’s location. Apart from finding the sole item related to this quest, I suggest you avoid all digging in Bikanel until Chapter 5. Frequent digging affects a certain boss later on and makes 100% completion impossible.

For now, just dig up the part Nhadala wants (press X on the yellow spot) and get back to Picket (the little drone) at the hover within 60-seconds. When you return to camp, Nhadala gives you the Still of the Night GG (plus an Elixir and salary), officially ending the mission.  Approach the Save Point for a brief scene, then beam aboard Celsius.

Whether you arrive from the airship or enter on foot from Macalania, you’ll start out on the south end of [Highbridge]. Ignore the shuttle on the right and walk straight through to [Central].  Head west to trigger a scene introducing Baralai, leader of the New Yevon movement.  

When you regain control, enter [New Yevon Headquarters] and head north through the creepy lobby.  Hop onto the floating shuttle to ride to the upper floor.  Talk to Baralai on top to receive a Tiara.  That’s all you can do in Bevelle at the moment; you’ll be spending a great deal of time here later on.

When you arrive at the [Mountain Gate], watch a scene with Kimahri (Yuna’s loyal friend) and Garik, expressing concern that two Ronso youths are missing.  When given a choice, tell Garik you’ll “take care of Lian and Ayde”.  Afterwards, speak with every Ronso in Gagazet (including Kimahri twice) using only the responses below. All of the Ronso are gathered at the Mountain Gate, except one:

Kimahri "You have to learn to deal with these things!"
Female next to Kimahri "Leave it to the Gullwings!"
Male Ronso pacing "I can imagine how you must feel..."
Female standing on the right "I'm sure you're right."
Another male Ronso pacing "I will never forget their sacrifice."
Male Ronso on the left "I wouldn't forgive them either."
Ronso inside ‘Fayth Scar’ cave "A change for the better, I hope."

Your responses affect an event later on, and whether or not you receive a certain Dressphere in Chapter 5.  Use the teleport pad to quickly reach the lone Ronso in the [Fayth Scar] cave - or go there on foot to gain EXP and AP.  Either way, there are no treasure chests on the [Mountain Trail], nor inside the cave.

Chapter 1 - Besaid (hotspot)

Arriving at a Save Point just outside [Besaid Village], walk down the hill for a scene with Wakka, Yuna’s old friend.  When it ends, explore the village. A woman in the s/w hut sells items; if you ask her about ‘rare finds’ she’ll mention one costing 900,000 gil. You can get this item (Besaid Key) for free in Chapter 3, so don’t waste your money. The chest (and bonus area) it unlocks will be covered later.  For now, enter the middle hut on the right to find Lulu, another old friend, who has some interesting news to share.

After the scene, chat with Lulu again in her (and Wakka’s) hut and agree to stay the night.  In the morning, speak with Lulu outside to learn that Wakka has wandered off into some cave.  Agree to look for him and the Mission “Where’s Wakka?” starts.  People in the village offer clues on where to find the cave and how to unlock it using a 4-digit code.  Red squares on your mini-map point to areas where key numbers are found (the four numbers are random for each playthrough).

To get the 1st number, leave the village and walk up the path to the [Promontory].  Press X to examine the ruined shrine at the fork and write down the number that appears on screen.  When you reach the [Ancient Road], climb the broken pillar on the right and press X to get the 2nd number.  Write it down and move on.  As you approach the waterfall, drop down from the left side of the bridge to reach a chest with 2x Chocobo Wing.  Climb back up and continue along [Waterfall Way] to the next screen.

Halfway down the circular path (formed by a collapsed dome), veer left to find the cave door.  Note its location and hop down to the [Beach].  Move south then backtrack slightly to reveal a kid standing near the left cliff. Climb up and examine ruins above the child to get the 3rd number.  Before hopping down, jump across greenery on the right to reach a hidden alcove with two chests containing 1,000 gil and a Hi-Potion.  Return to the child and drop down to the beach. Climb the cliff past the dock to get the 4th number.

With all codes in hand, return to the cave door you passed earlier. Input the 4 numbers in the order shown on top of the screen to unlock it.  Enter the [Cave] and talk to Wakka, who mentions an old sphere he’s been looking for.  When the scene ends, explore the small cave.  To the right is a switch that requires another 4-digit code (related to the Besaid Key mentioned earlier).  Ignore it and head north.

Check the western offshoot for a chest with 2x Potion then follow the main path to a set of pillars.  Hop across the gap to a Save Point.  Use it before examining the sphere pedestal up ahead.

BOSS:  Flame Dragon
The boss is immune to fire but weak against ice, so have a Black Mage start casting that, while a Songstress uses Darkness Dance causing all of the dragon's physical attacks to miss. Your final character can be your power hitter, either a Gunner or a Warrior. If you acquired Restless Sleep GG, Bio is also quite helpful.

Upon beating the boss, you get the White Mage Dressphere. Return to Wakka at the cave to view the Besaid Sphere you just found (it's called 'Treasure Sphere' in Shinra's menu).  Watch scenes that follow, earning you the Protection Halo GG for Mission Complete!  

Arriving in Zanarkand, the girls discover that the once-sacred city has turned into a cheesy tourist attraction. A new Mission (“Claim the Treasure Sphere!”) starts right away.  A female attendant prevents you from moving forward, so climb the mound on the right to find Isaaru, a former summoner from FFX.  Tell Isaaru you remember him (even if you don’t).  After he leaves, proceed north to the [Dome].

Inside, you’ll overhear three kids talking about a password (‘key’). The lady on the left sells items if you need any; otherwise, just follow the kids until a scene occurs.  Tell Pacce you remember him when asked (he was Isaaru’s guardian in FFX).  Pacce and his little pals are sphere hunters, known as the Kinderguardians. Move on, fighting visible Goons, as you traverse the Dome ruins. One mentions another password (“mon”).  At the fork, head east to snatch up a Mega Phoenix then proceed north. After another forced fight or two, collect a Phoenix Down and enter the Dome [Corridor].

Go straight through the hallway, passing lots of empty chests and tourists, and enter the [Cloister of Trials].  There are no floor puzzles to solve this time.  In the larger chamber, you’ll see Pacce’s gang in front of an open chest, delighted at finding the ‘treasure’ and a couple of monkeys sitting on the altar.  If you examine the monkeys, you’ll discover they have names (Terran and Max). A ‘heart’ pulses over one their heads and the other one flees.  This event offers clues to a side-quest you’ll be completing later on.

For now, ride the center platform down to a Save Point. After using it, enter the [Chamber of the Fayth] to find Cid.  When speaking with Cid, say "You bet I do!" to set up events in Chapter 3.  After the scene, talk to the plump guy on the left and watch as a bunch of ‘named’ monkeys scamper by (some steal your gil, btw).  Enter the [Great Hall] and raid several chests to collect 3x Remedy, Ether, Elixir, Hi-Potion and Phoenix Down.

Walk upstairs and enter [The Beyond] for a scene.  Move forward and you’ll hear a voice call out.  When prompted, say, “Is that you, Isaaru?” to earn the Heart Reborn GG. Afterwards, walk down the northern stairs to reach a hidden [Treasure Chamber].  Fight random enemies as you jump and climb your way through the long, linear passage.  Approach the sphere podium at the end to trigger a scene… and a boss.

BOSS:  Guardian Beast
Like earlier bosses, use Songstress’ Darkness Dance. The Black Mage will play a key role here since this boss is weak to all elements. Hit it with Warrior’s Mental Break then let loose with magic spells.  Have Paine work as your attacker while Rikku steals with Thief. Switch her to Songstress after that, and switch Yuna to Gunner or Warrior if you need more offensive power.

With the mission completed, you receive a Sphere Fragment and return to the Celsius for more scenes. To find the other half of the broken sphere, a new ‘hotspot’ appears in Kilika.  No choice but to go there…

Back on the dock, use the Save Point then move forward until a scene occurs. When it ends, approach the gates to be introduced to Nooj, head of the Youth League, as he addresses a crowd of supporters.  The mission (“Awesome Sphere Heist!”) begins.

Enter [Kilika Woods] to find Yevon soldiers blocking residents from passing through. To get by them, you have to find another route.  Also, if you spoke to the woman on the dock who complained about monkeys, you can catch some of them now.  Keep your ears pealed and whenever you hear chattering, stop and press X to catch a Squatter Monkey.  There are 13 total hiding in the woods, so catch as many as you can while here.

As for the main mission, use the nearby Save Point then head west.  At the fork, you’ll notice some people running across the upper log.  Follow them, using the lower right path.  At the next intersection, go north.  When you reach the dead end, choose to “peek through the bushes” and listen to guards discussing passwords.  Keep listening when given the choice.  The information you gain will come in handy shortly.

Return to the intersection and head east to the water’s edge.  Once there, go south and press Circle to jump onto the big tree trunk leaning over the water. Above, you’ll get a nice view of Kilika and a Megalixir. Hop down and head north now, to another Save Point. Use it before approaching the guards on the stairs.  Here, you have a choice:  Either fight waves of guards or choose correct passwords to earn rewards.

For the peaceful approach, count the total number of guards at each post.  If it’s an even number, say “Craven Monkey” and if it’s an odd number, say “Carved Monkey”.  As you move up the stairs, counting becomes more difficult (some guards arrive late, the camera shifts around, etc.). Here’s a cheat:

1st wave = Craven Monkey
2nd wave = Carved Monkey - earn Hi-Potion
3rd wave = Craven Monkey - earn Ether
4th wave = Carved Monkey (twice) - earn Turbo Ether

If you get all passwords correct, you earn the Menace of the Deep GG at the top of the stairs.  Move forward for a scene…and a boss.

In addition to regular attacks, the boss uses Blast Punch that tears off half of your max HP and induces Delay. If hit with his Haymaker, expect a near-kill from it. Have White Mage cast Protect on everyone followed by a steady stream of Cure. Warrior’s Power Break will lower Haymaker's damage, and Armor/Mental Break will increase your offense. Songstress’ Darkness Dance will temporarily blind the boss, gaining you just enough enough time to heal or steal.

After defeating the boss, the Gullwings snatch the Awesome Sphere, completing both the mission and Chapter 1.  Save your game when prompted.

After a scene in the hall, speak with Shinra and choose to view the Awesome Sphere.  Doing so earns you another Al Bhed Primer. Approach Brother to continue the conversation.  Before choosing which faction to give the sphere to (New Yevon or Youth League), go to the Engine Room and raid newly-filled chests holding 4x Remedy, 5x Phoenix Down2x Ether and 8x Potion.

If you met the three musicians in Macalania Woods during Chapter 1, you’ll find them in the Cabin hallway. Speak with Daraya (the drummer) to start a little mini-game.  Push the musicians into the elevator, one at a time. After doing this, a cutscene occurs on the ship’s deck.

When you regain control of Yuna, return to the Bridge. Tell Brother you've made a decision. Two new ‘hotspots’ appear on the map in Mushroom Rock and Bevelle.  Where you decide to go affects the rest of the game:

When choosing between Mushroom Rock or Bevelle, be aware of the consequences:

Mushroom Rock:  This means you’ll side with the Youth League, which is the only way to get 100% completion. A Chapter 5 sidequest becomes available, but you lose access to Bevelle in Chapter 2 and most of Chapter 3. You cannot get two Garment Grids in Chapter 2 nor a sphere in Chapter 3.

Bevelle:  This means you'll side with New Yevon. Choosing this faction makes 100% completion impossible. However, you will be able to get the Blood of the Beast GG and the Shining Mirror GG during a sidequest in Chapter 2. You lose access to Youth League's HQ in Chapters 2 and 5, and cannot get a sphere in Chapter 4.

Beam down to the chosen area for a scene with the faction’s leadership. Upon returning to the Celsius, the crew finds Leblanc’s Sphere, confirming that she ripped you off while you were gone. To retrieve the stolen treasure sphere, you need to sneak into Leblanc’s chateau wearing disguises. A new ‘hotspot’ appears in Guadosalam and the Mission (“Strip Search”) begins.

During your initial visit to Guadosalam, approach Leblanc’s [Chateau] only to be turned away (the event adds to % completion).  While here, gather intel on where to find 3 Syndicate Uniforms.  Speak with residents to learn where the Syndicate has gone to:  Djose, Mt. Gagazet, and Bikanel.  

Near the Save Point, enter the Inn on the right. Ask the man behind the counter if he has “any data” for sale.  If you have 10,000 gil to spare, agree to buy a clue from him to start a lucrative mini-game.  The clue he gives you will point to certain person interested in the data you received.  Press Square to talk to residents - if you find the right person within 3 tries, you earn up to 10,000 times your original investment.  The faster you find the person, the bigger the reward.  If you don’t find the correct person after 3 attempts, the dealer keeps your 10,000 gil. The dealer only sells data once, so save your game in case you want to try for a bigger payout:

Clue Location and Person Gil
"He is someone loafing about indoors" The Hypello inside Tobli’s production office 25,000 Gil
"…someone interested in joining the Syndicate" Woman in brown/green next to the Chateau 40,000 Gil
"I haven't the slightest clue what this guy is doing" The Hypello endlessly pacing outside 50,000 Gil
"It is a woman" Woman east of Tobli Productions entrance 70,000 Gil
"It was someone rather young, yes" Woman with red bandana on n/w end 30,000 Gil
"It's a guy sitting down" Kid wearing helmet outside data shop 50,000 Gil
"It's someone by the entrance to town" Man near the Thunder Plains exit 60,000 Gil
"It's someone near the door that will not open" Man in the blue bandana in southwest 50,000 Gil
"It's someone right next to a door" Man west of Tobli Productions entrance 30,000 Gil
"It's someone sitting…what he's doing there?" Man with blue shirt in northwest 40,000 Gil
"It's the last person you'd expect, no question” The Data Dealer himself 100,000 Gil
"The guy you're after is just sitting around” Man in red shorts outside the data shop 30,000 Gil
"The person is a woman" Woman in green in northwest 25,000 Gil
"This guy's in a place you wouldn't expect" The shopkeeper in item shop 90,000 Gil
"This individual can be found indoors" The chubby man in the item shop 30,000 Gil
"This man bears himself with confidence" Man wearing brown cap outside data Inn 30,000 Gil

Whatever profit you made, use it towards paying off O’aka’s debt on the airship (see ‘gil-trick’ below).

Chapter 2 - Aboard the Celsius

After gathering clues in Guadosalam, talk to Barkeep and choose to ‘rest’ (adding to %).  Now reduce O’aka’s debt to zero using the profits you received from the data dealer game.  Once he’s free of debt, O’aka will sell items at a deep discount aboard the airship.  Buy his entire stock then re-sell the stock to Barkeep at a profit.  Amass unlimited gil this way (buying from O’aka and selling to Barkeep) for the remainder of the chapter.

When ready, return to the Bridge and pick a destination.  Avoid story mission locations for now and re-visit all other areas first:

* Besaid Island Mission (“Run the Gunner’s Gauntlet!”)
* Kilika Island Scene
* Luca Scene, Mini-Game
** Mi’ihen Highroad Mission (“Cuckoo for Chocobos!”)
* Mushroom Rock Road Scene (or) Mission if you sided with New Yevon
* Djose Temple STORY MISSION
* Moonflow Mission (“YRP, the Scalpers Three!”)
*** Guadosalam STORY MISSION - after finding 3 Syndicate Uniforms
* Thunder Plains Scene, Mini-Game
** Macalania Mission (“Track Down the Troupe!”)
** Bikanel Desert STORY MISSION
** Bevelle Scene - differs depending on who you sided with
** Calm Lands Mission (“Clean Sweep”), Side-Quests (Bridal, Publicity), Mini-Games
** Mt. Gagazet STORY MISSION
** Zanarkand Side-Quest (“Operation: Monkey!”)

When you beam down, you’ll find the Aurochs gathered near the Save Point. Chat with them for a scene, during which Beclem arrives. Accept his challenge to start the mission “Run the Gunner’s Gauntlet!” Ask Beclem to explain the rules:

The idea is to score points by targeting creatures that attack you on the road.  Lock on with Circle and press X to shoot at them using the gun Beclem provides.  Each time you eliminate a creature, a chest appears.  The chests contain various types of ammo, which you select using the R1 button.  Shoot down as many creatures as you can without getting attacked to build up chains. Chains earn bonus points. If you get attacked too often, you ‘die’ and must try again.

For this course, score more than 500 pts. and meet Beclem on the beach within 7 minutes to earn ‘Mission Complete’ and the Enigma Plate GG. You can replay the Gunner’s Gauntlet as many times as you like. Hone your skills to win even better prizes, such as the Mortal Coil GG and Adamantite accessory.

After the mission, you automatically return to the airship.  Beam back down to Besaid to collect any chests you missed.  At the waterfall bridge, drop down to collect a Wall Ring.  On the beach, climb up to the ruins and jump across greenery on the right to get 1,500 Gil and 2x Hi-Potion from the secluded alcove.  Inside the cave, follow the western offshoot to nab 3x Potion.  Advance PR/Marriage campaigns here, too.

When you arrive in Kilika, watch a scene with Dona on the dock then hop over the boats to collect a Turbo Ether and 2x Mana Tablet. The rest of Kilika is blocked at the moment, so just return to the airship.

Arriving in Luca, go downstairs to trigger a scene with Shelinda, who is now a news anchor!  Watch her broadcast (press R1/R2 to switch camera angles) and during Yuna’s interview, answer however you like.  When it ends, Shelinda gives you the Covetous GG.

The Sphere Break mini-game is still available in Luca’s stadium if you care to play; otherwise, walk upstairs and hop over the railing on the left to collect 2x Light Curtain on your way back up to the Save Point.

Whether you beam down or arrive from Luca, DO NOT enter the Travel Agency until you’ve explored every region.  On the south end, open chests containing a Muscle Belt, 1000 gil, 3x Phoenix Down, 3x Antidote, 3x Potion, Silver Bracer, and 3x Holy Water.  Speak with people on the road to advance PR/Marriage campaigns, too.

Collect 3x Eye Drop from a chest behind the Agency then explore the remaining [Newroad] and [Oldroad] sections.  In addition to more PR/Marriage folks to pitch, there are several chests to raid with 3x Phoenix Down, 2x Grenade, Ether, 2x Potion, 3x Echo Screen, and 3x Soft.  After thoroughly exploring, return to the Travel Agency and save your game.

Enter to find a girl talking about chocobos.  When she leaves, go outside and talk to her at the cliff overlooking the ocean.  When Calli asks if you remember her, say yes (even if you don’t).  Agree to help Calli catch a chocobo to begin the mission “Cuckoo for Chocobos!”

Head south and let Rikku take the lead.  While following, step on some yellow feathers but don’t stray too far from her. At certain points, Rikku will stop and ask if you want help.  Decline her offers (say, “Not this time”) and just continue the pursuit until a scene takes over.  While Rikku and Paine cover two sides of the road, Yuna’s job is to catch the overgrown bird. Move down the road to find the chocobo and start a mini-game.

When the chocobo is facing you, watch its head movements to determine which direction it’ll go - left, right, or center.  Use the d-pad to pick a direction (or X for center) and tag the bird before it runs by.  Chase it down and repeat the process. Correctly tagging the chocobo 4 or 5 times ends the game - but intentionally miss at least twice to witness two key scenes with Rikku a bit later.

After tagging the chocobo enough times, it dashes away.  Follow Rikku and Paine to the search area marked with a red circle on your mini-map.  Watch a scene there then move on to the next search area.  At some point, you’ll see Rikku slipping off a tall dome and landing on her butt (one of the %-critical scenes).  Eventually, Paine mentions finding a better way to catch the stubborn creature. 

Head further south and speak with the Al Bhed hover pilot twice. When she offers to catch the chocobo for you, say, "Please, yes!"  Watch the scene that follows, during which Calli runs into trouble.  Return to the Travel Agency and save your game.  Proceed north to see Calli trapped by a giant creature below.  You have 3 minutes to reach her, so start moving.

BOSS:  Chocobo Eater
Chocobo Eater will attack the girl with the most HP and casts various elemental spells. Silence the boss and apply Breaks to render its offense useless. Chocobo Eater is particularly vulnerable to fire so exploit that.  If the boss begins to charge for "Tired of [character]", use Sentinel or Protect the party beforehand - casting Slow on the boss really helps, too.

After successfully rescuing Calli, you receive the Selene Guard GG. Mission complete! Do not press any buttons during the ending scene - watch Rikku dash across the bridge as a hover approaches (the second %-critical scene). When it’s over, you’ll be back aboard the airship.

Immediately return to Mi’ihen Highroad.  Speak with Calli and Clasko, who are standing near the chocobo at the Travel Agency.  Invite them both onto the airship, along with their feathered friend!  You’ll find them in the Cabin. Once Clasko is on board with the chocobo, a new ‘hotspot’ appears in the Calm Lands.

NOTE: A ‘hotspot’ only appears here if Clasko joined you on the airship in Chapter 1 (from Mushroom Rock) and re-boarded with Calli in Chapter 2 (from Mi’ihen Highroad). This guide assumes that is the case…

As soon as you arrive in the Calm Lands, Clasko mentions his true calling.  Allow him to leave and watch as he dashes off towards the old Monster Arena on the east side.  Choose to “Follow him.” Speak with Clasko at the entrance. Agree to clear out fiends residing in the ruins to start the mission “Clean Sweep”.

Inside the [Facility Ruins], move forward to a Save Point. After using it, explore each stall for fiends. Some are illusions that disappear when touched; others are real.  To distinguish between them, know that all ‘fake’ fiends are looking in the direction of the ‘real’ one.  Save after each battle, in case your party faces a Queen Couerl (its instant KO ability can easily wipe out your party if you’re not careful).  After defeating five real monsters, locate Clasko near the Save Point.  Defeat three Blue Elementals hiding in the lowest stall to complete the mission, earning you the Alchemist Dressphere and the Highroad Winds GG

Re-enter the facility to find a little chicobo stationed in the lowest stall. Examine it and choose “Hey Clasko” to have him appear.  Speak with Clasko to bring up a “Chocobo Ranch” menu offering various tutorials. He’ll give you some Gysahl Greens and Pahsana Greens to help you get started.  Below are some helpful tips:

Chapter 2 - Chocobo Ranch
To catch a chocobo, fight random battles until one appears.  Feed it Gysahl Greens while defeating fiends that accompany it. Once it’s alone, feed it ANOTHER Gysahl Green to catch it. All chocobos you catch automatically go to Clasko’s Ranch.  There are 3 types of chocobos: Bold, Normal, and Timid

The Ranch can accommodate 14 chocobos (one stall remains empty until Chapter 5).  If you catch more than that, Clasko will start releasing some. The northern stalls are for ‘Runners’ and the east/west stalls are for your ‘Reserves’. To rearrange them, pick “Change Roster” in Clasko’s menu.

You can dispatch up to 4 Runners at any one time to search for treasure. Check in with Clasko after fighting 7 random battles to make sure they all returned safely.  Runners are less likely to flee when the Ranch is filled to capacity.  They are also less likely to flee if you send them to areas best suited to their temperament:

Bold = Calm Lands / Djose
Normal = Besaid / Moonflow / Macalania
Timid = Kilika / Thunder Plains / Bikanel

When your Runners return, feed them Pahsana Greens to restore their ‘Heart’ before sending them out again.  Some chocobos can be raised to higher levels (max. Level 5) - release chocobos that cannot level up to make room for better ones.  To raise chocobos, feed them Nutritious Greens.  Clasko will restock different types of Greens based on the ratio you select:

Pahsana Greens = for restoring ‘Heart’ and raising chocobos to Level 2
Mimett Greens = for raising chocobos to Levels 3 & 4
Sylkis Greens = for raising chocobos to Level 5.

Clasko will have a fresh supply of greens after you’ve fought at least 7 random battles somewhere. Note that Gysahl Greens are only used for catching chocobos.  To get more, pick ‘Junk Food’ in Clasko’s menu.  If you’re going for 100% completion, you must catch at least one chocobo before Chapter 3 starts.

When ready, explore the rest of the Calm Lands.  At the Travel Agency, you’ll bump into the two Ronso youths, Lian and Ayde, that ran away from Gagazet.  Speak with them to trigger a scene, and don’t fret when they leave - you’ll catch up with the pair later.  Check in with the father to see how well you’re doing in his Marriage quest and do the same with whichever PR company you’re helping.  Also, there’s a little ‘chicobo’ standing at the entrance to the Travel Agency that offers shortcuts to the Ranch from now on.

In terms of treasure, fetch 2x Ether (s/w), 2x Chocobo Wing (n/w), and 2x Phoenix Down near the Agency. Two more chests, each with Phoenix Down, are found in the Calm Lands’ Bridge and Gorge regions.

Chapter 2 - Mushroom Rock - Youth League
When you arrive in Mushroom Rock, head north to get a Hi-Potion and 1500 gil in the upper alcove then approach the Ravine entrance for a scene with Yaibal. When it ends, enter the [Ravine] and speak with the two escorts that arrive.  Ride up and follow more escorts north, until you get a message from the airship alerting you to sphere activity in the area. 

Immediately drop down into the lower crevasse (where you chased Logos and Ormi earlier).  Make your way over to the sealed door beyond the Save Point.  Watch a scene with Nooj at the Den of Woe to receive Crimson Sphere 7.  If you fail to get this sphere now, the Den of Woe will remain locked forever and you can kiss 100% goodbye.  On your way out, raid three chests to get an Ether, 2x Turbo Ether, and Phoenix Down

Back on the upper Ravine path, keep following the escorts until you reach a couple of Drowsy Ochus. Either walk by slowly or fight them - your choice. Ride the stone lift up and get a Shining Bracer from the chest behind the elevator platform.  Upon reaching [Youth League HQ], hop down the eastern path to find a Mythril Bangle.  Back on top, approach Elma for a scene.  When it ends, chat with Maroda then return to the airship. Make sure to view the report contained on Crimson Sphere 7 with Shinra.

Chapter 2 - Mushroom Rock - New Yevon
Follow the red arrow on your mini-map until a scene occurs. The Youth League will not be happy to see the Gullwings, so just enter the [Ravine] to start the mission “Who Needs an Invitation?” Defeat waves of soldiers as you move through. Drop down into the lower crevasse and head north to the sealed door beyond the Save Point.  During a scene at the Den of Woe, you receive Crimson Sphere 7.  Return to the upper path and continue fighting Youth League soldiers until Elma and her boys stop you.

BOSS:  Elma, 2x League Warriors
Take care of the League Warriors then focus on Elma.  After Hastening herself, she’ll use physical attacks and Thunder spells, along with Sleep or Slow. Dispel Elma's Haste if you can and remove any afflictions with Esuna. To lower her offensive power, apply all Breaks (Power/Magic/Armor) and just slash away.  Elma can be put to Sleep, too.

After the battle, ride the stone lift up. Before approaching the elevator platform, get a Shining Bracer from the chest behind it. Watch a scene at the elevator to earn a Kinesis Badge, along with the Shining Mirror GG for Mission Complete. 

From the Save Point, head east to [South Bank] and speak with little Tobli. Agree to sell concert tickets for him to begin the mission “YRP, the Scalpers Three!”  If you helped Tobli earlier, the baseline price for each ticket will be 500 gil (double if you ignored him).  Either way, sell 10 tickets to people in the Moonflow and keep any profits above the baseline.  Here’s a list of folks that will buy tickets at a premium and what they’re willing to pay:

South Bank Woman wearing red bandana 1,500 Gil
South Bank Road Female Al Bhed at south exit to Djose 1,500 Gil
South Wharf Woman standing near the Save Pt. 1,500 Gil
South Shoopuf Young man sitting on the stairs 1,500 Gil
South Shoopuf Man in the southwest corner 2,000 Gil
North Shoopuf Lady standing on n/e ramp 2,000 Gil
North Shoopuf Kid to the right of a Hypello 2,000 Gil
North Wharf Woman standing here 2,000 Gil
North Bank Road First man on the roadside 1,500 Gil
North Bank Road Man talking to elderly lady 2,000 Gil

After selling the 10th ticket, you automatically return to Tobli.  In addition to earning maximum profits (12,500 gil), Tobli gives you a Muscle Belt and the Seething Cauldron GG. Mission Complete!

At the Save Point on the southern end, you’ll see an Al Bhed technician kneeling in front of a lightning tower.  Speak with him twice and agree to help calibrate towers to start an elaborate mini-game.  Equip a Charm Bracelet (if you have one) to eliminate random encounters while completing this rather horrible task.

Each tower will be marked with a green square on your mini-map.  There are five towers in the southern plains and five more in the northern plains. To calibrate a tower, walk over to it and press X.  One of your girls will then step forward to complete a button-pushing sequence. If you correctly match 30 button groups within the time limit, the tower is calibrated. You are only allowed 3 screw-ups, and the button sequences get much harder (and faster) as you progress.

- For Rikku, press the button displayed on screen before it blinks off.
- For Paine, three buttons fall from top of the screen; press one that flashes before it hits the ground.
- For Yuna, memorize a button sequence and repeat it.

The 10th tower, on the western bank, has to be calibrated remotely - and Yuna must press buttons in reverse order. After successfully calibrating at least five towers (and attempting all ten), go the the Travel Agency in the center of the Thunder Plains and speak with the Al Bhed technician inside.  He rewards your hard work by giving you the Samurai's Honor GG.  If button mashing is your thing, feel free to re-calibrate towers as often as you like.  Doing so leads to better treasures later on.

Before leaving the Thunder Plains, speak with Cid (his location will be marked on your mini-map).  During the scene, Cid will apologize for what transpired in Zanarkand earlier.  Naturally, pick up all the new chests, too.

From the Save Point in [South Woods], walk up the branches to find Tobli’s assistant, the Hypello, waving his arms.  Talk to him and agree to find more missing musicians.  Make your way over [Lake Road] and take the n/e exit into the [Spring]. Speak with Bayra (the harpist) at the water’s edge to start the Mission “Track Down the Troupe”.  To find the musicians, look for rings of butterflies.  There are two right here in the Spring - one to the west and another to the south.  Step through both rings to reveal two of the five musicians. Now return to Lake Road and head s/e. 

Follow the crystal path until you see another butterfly ring.  After a forced battle, step inside the ring to reveal Donga (the drummer). Watch a brief scene then collect a Silver Bracer from the northern offshoot. Keep heading west, down to the Save Point. From here, head east and veer south to the lower [Spring].  Step inside the ring of butterflies to reveal Putatak.  After a brief scene, you’ll be transported back to Bayra. DO NOT speak with the harpist yet - there is still one more musician to find.

Return to Lake Road and head south into the woods.  Keep moving along the branches until you see a ring of butterflies floating above the path. Jump through the ring to land on the lower path and reveal the final musician.  Now return to Bayra in the upper Spring.  Speak with him to receive a Haste Bangle and end the mission.  Do not board the airship when asked (say “no”).

Return to the Hypello at the base of the crystal path to get the Bitter Farewell GG. Look for an Icy Gleam chest in the woods and nab 2x Hi-Potion from a chest near the Travel Agency.

If you sided with the Youth League, the only thing you can do is fight hostile Yevon soldiers on the [Highroad].  You’ll be booted out of the city as soon as you reach the door and deposited on the road between Calm Lands and Macalania.

If you sided with New Yevon, head north towards [New Yevon HQ].  Speak with Pacce at the entrance to receive a Cat's Bell accessory.  That’s about it.

Beam down and head through the [Dome].  Along the way, pick up every chest you see - ones that were previously empty are now filled (16 total).  Speak with Isaaru in the Dome’s [Corridor] to start “Operation: Monkey!”  Though tedious, it’s a %-critical side-quest.

The idea is to pair up monkeys with similar names. There are 24 monkeys spread across 6 different screens, so you’ll be moving back and forth a lot.  Start by finding ‘Birch’ in [The Beyond] - he’ll have hearts popping out of his head.  Press X to pick him up and carry him around until you find his mate, ‘Sequoia’.  Repeat the process 12 times until all monkeys are paired up:

Pair # First Monkey Location Second Monkey Location
1 Birch The Beyond Sequoia Chamber of the Fayth
2 Spring Great Hall Autumn Cloister - entry room
3 Dusky Dome - corridor Dawn The Beyond
4 Rosemary Great Hall Thyme Cloister - elevator
5 Terran Cloister - elevator Skye The Beyond
6 Minni Great Hall Maxx Cloister - elevator
7 Summer Chamber of the Fayth Winter Dome - corridor
8 Peke Cloister - elevator Valli Chamber of the Fayth
9 Canis Great Hall Felina Dome - corridor
10 Arroh Cloister - elevator Quivrr Dome - corridor
11 Golde Chamber of the Fayth Sylva Dome - corridor
12 Luna Dome - corridor Sol Great Hall

Mission complete! You’ll get a Soul of Thamasa accessory for playing Cupid. Now on to finding those Uniforms…

Chapter 2 - Djose (hotspot)

When you beam down, enter Djose Temple to collect 2x Echo Screen in the n/w room. Go outside and nab 2x Phoenix Downs behind the registration tent, then head south down [Pilgrimage Road], grabbing 3x Potion from a chest on the bridge. At the 3-way intersection, head south until a scene occurs, starting the Mission “Two Birds, One Stone”. Battle Goons along the [Highroad] until you spot a glowing sphere on the ground.  Pick it up to get Yuna’s special Floral Fallal Dressphere and a scene showing the arrival of your pals, Ormi and Logos.

BOSS:  Ormi, Logos, Fem-Goon
Ormi still uses basic attacks and Pirouette Pitch, plus a new move, Concussive Shock, that hits everyone for unblockable damage. Logos will toss bombs causing Darkness and Silence, plus his new Roulette move can instantly kill someone. The Fem-Goon mostly uses elemental magic. Take her out first, then focus on Logos, since his skills can greatly impede your offense. Use Darkness Dance to cancel their regular attacks if they become a nuisance.

After completing the mission, you obtain a Syndicate Uniform and automatically board the airship.

Chapter 2 - Bikanel Desert (hotspot)

When you arrive in Bikanel, speak with the hover pilot, then Nhadala, then the pilot again. Choose to fly to the [Oasis] to begin the Mission “Water We Doing Here?” Once there, walk over the water to find Rikku's Special Machina Maw Dressphere, as well as your buddy, Logos.

BOSS:  Logos, 2x Fem-Goon
Logo’s arsenal remains the same. If you open this fight with Reflect on your party, it will bounce back the Fem-Goons' magic spells - they will probably end up killing themselves.  Have White Mage Esuna anyone hit with Logos’ bombs (or toss curative items) and cast Protect on the party while two Warriors fight.

With the mission completed, you receive a Syndicate Uniform and the Hour of Need GG.

When you arrive, speak with Kimahri twice and talk to the other Ronsos - all but one are gathered at the [Mountain Gate]. Pick these responses to set up future events (and add to % completion):

Kimahri "You have to figure this out on your own."
Female next to Kimahri "He does seem very tired."
Female Ronso on the right "And what of the Guado?"
Male Ronso pacing "Maybe the Guado really are to blame."
Garik "What if the Guado retaliate?"
Male Ronso on the left "Then ... there won't be anyone left to fight."
Another Male Ronso pacing "Please, try to think about it some more."
Ronso near ‘Fayth Scar’ "They should take better care of the mountain."

The teleports are not working at the moment, so start hiking up the [Mountain Trail]. There are no chests to find, so just keep going past the [Prominence] opening to the [Fayth Scar] cliffs.  Watch a scene as you enter, starting the Mission “Spring Into Action!”

Climb up the ledges in front of you.  On top, head east, past the cave opening, towards a floating pillar. To get the chest on top, walk SLOWLY while pressing Circle to jump onto the pillar. Collect an Elixir then jump back onto the path.  Enter the [Fayth Cave] and proceed to a group of stones you need to hop across. Veering east while crossing the stones takes you to a ledge with a Hi-Potion chest.  Return to the stones and head north now to exit the cave.

Outside, climb the ledges on the right and you’ll see a Fem-Goon running past a Save Point. DO NOT FOLLOW HER into the cave (kiss 100% goodbye) - instead, climb higher, using ledges to reach the summit.  On top, jump over the western gap and walk slowly while holding Circle towards another floating pillar. Collect a White Cape then jump back across and head east into a small cave with Phoenix Down perched on a boulder.

Back outside, climb ledges on the right until you reach an opening in the rocks (further east leads to a dead-end).  Pass through to trigger a scene in the [Hot Springs] during which the girls find another Syndicate Uniform.  When the scene ends, move forward to a Save Point.  After using it, head west to meet up with the Fem-Goon and her cronies.  Thrash them then climb more ledges to face Ormi.

BOSS:  Ormi
Ormi's noticeably more buffed up, but that's the main difference. Open with Warrior’s Power Break and White Mage’s Protect then all you have to worry about is his Concussive Shock move. Blind him with Songstress’ Darkness Dance, further weakening his offense. From there on out, it's a simple grind.

For completing the mission, you earn the Stonehewn GG and board the Celsius automatically.

Chapter 2 - Aboard the Celsius

Once you’ve obtained all three Syndicate Uniforms, you get the Bum Rush GG and ‘Mission Complete’ for the overall goal.  To continue the main storyline, pick Guadosalam as your next destination.

Back in Guadosalam, approach the [Chateau] to initiate a scene.  Pick “Okay” to change into uniforms, thus starting the Mission, “Faking and Entering”.  Watch scenes inside the Chateau.  Wait for Leblanc to go upstairs then enter the lower door.  Move through the [Living Room] to find Logos and Ormi chatting in back.  During the scene, you (disguised as a Fem-Goon) are told to visit Leblanc upstairs.

Leave the room and go up to Leblanc’s [Private Quarters]. Approach her to begin a ‘hot/cold’ mini-game that involves giving Leblanc a massage.  A 3x3 grid represents her ‘back’ and the idea is to find spots offering the most pleasure.  Leblanc will comment if you’re way off the mark (blue), getting warmer (green/yellow), or right on target (red).  Using the d-pad, find as many red hearts as you can in 15 turns to rack up points. Once you hit red, the grid resets; your ultimate goal is to score 32 points or more.

Regardless of how well you did, Logos and Ormi arrive after the massage, ordering you to check on the ‘switch panel’ downstairs.  Return to the Living Room and examine the blue pedestal on the left to open the door next to it.  Inside the [Hidden Passageway], the girls finally shed their uniforms…and immediately get caught.

BOSS:  Ormi, Fem-Goon, Dr. Goon
This time, Ormi uses Huggles (three-hits) and Supercollider (removes 1/2 of your current HP).  Both cause Delay, making him a more considerable threat. The Fem-Goon and Dr. Goon haven't changed.  Opening with Protect is a good idea. Use Darkness Dance and Stat Breaks to cripple Ormi. Don’t be shy about healing often.

After the battle, head north, fighting random enemies, until you reach a Save Point. Use it then enter the door up ahead to find a chest - it will contain either a Heady Perfume or Gold Hairpin, depending on how well you did during the massage. Leave the room and head east to another door.  Enter and pick up the orange sphere on the bedside table.  After the girls watch it, you receive Crimson Sphere 10…and another fight begins.

BOSS:  Ormi, Logos
Take out Logos ASAP to stop his Roulette move, which he now uses every 4th turn.  In addition to possible KO, Roulette causes a host of status ailments.  Immediately Esuna any petrified character, before Ormi shatters them with Supercollider. Open with Protect and hit both bosses with some Stat Breaks.  Use Darkness Dance to blind them, or put them to Sleep if you’re using a magical offense.

After Logos and Ormi flee, leave the room and head north to a T-intersection.  Climb the wall here and you’ll see two pits in front of you.  Drop down into each pit to find “Security Override” Switches 2 & 3.  Press both then climb up and approach the wall at the end.  When spikes emerge, jump across both gaps and let the wall push you onto a ledge.  There, on the right, you’ll find “Security Override” Switch 1.  Deactivate it then hop down to return to the spiked wall corridor.

Jump across the pits again and push the “Security Door Manual Override” button on the now-dormant wall to open a passageway on the left.  Enter and move forward to a metal door with a heart emblem.  Examine the door to trigger a scene inside.  The entire Syndicate arrives to fight this time.

BOSS:  Leblanc, Ormi, Logos
This fight will be tough and you can run into some trouble if you're not careful. Take out Logos first because he has the lowest HP and instant KO ability with Roulette. By taking him out, you also negate the Syndicate's special delta attack. Cast Protect on the girls then work on taking out Leblanc.  Finish off Ormi last, since his attacks are the weakest out of the three.  Have White Mage Protect and Shell the party, Warrior hit targets with Stat Breaks, and Songstress casting Darkness Dance. Dispel any buffs Leblanc puts on her party and take out each target, one at a time.

Watch scenes that follow, earning you the Reassembled Sphere and Healing Light GG for Mission Complete! The group watches the sphere and learns about Vegnagun, Bevelle’s secret weapon.  Afterwards, you’ll be prompted to save your game.  Do so.  (Don’t worry about the visible chest during the scene, you’ll get it later.)

Back on board the Celsius, now with Leblanc and Co., a new ‘hotspot’ appears in Bevelle.  No choice but to click “Go” and continue the storyline. Your allegiance will influence upcoming events.

If you sided with the Youth League, expect to fight Yevon soldiers as soon as you arrive on [Highbridge].  Either way, mission “Infiltrate Bevelle” starts. Use the Save Point and talk to Barkeep, who beamed down in case you need items.  Move forward, fighting waves of soldiers (or not), as you pass through Central and enter [New Yevon HQ].

From the lobby, head east to a stone platform.  Stand on it to lower a wall elsewhere.  Return to the lobby and head west now, to find the lowered wall. Climb up and drop down into a room with two floating pedestals. Examine the lowest pedestal (s/e corner) to alter the central lift’s destination. Return to the entrance and head north to automatically ride the shuttle down to the [Trials].

FFX players will immediately recognize the Trial’s electric pathways.  Equip poison resistance to reduce damage from fiends lurking down here. Move forward to the intersection and head east to find chests on two offshoots.  Both contain 3x Remedy. Now, head west to another intersection. Take the southern slope down to a chest with 3000 gil.  Proceed north, up to the next level.

On top, go west to find a chest with 4x Hi-Potion then move east to find two chests containing 8x Potion and 4x Phoenix Down.  Hop on the shuttle at the end of the path to ascend to the next level.  Walk upstairs and continue heading east into the [Antechamber]. Open a chest near the back wall to acquire a Chocobo Feather and use the Save Point.  Barkeep will be standing here, too, if you need to restock items. 

When ready, go through the doorway on the right to trigger a scene, during which the group jumps down into the [Restricted Area].  There’s no mini-map to guide you through this circular area, so pay close attention to your surroundings. Approach the ledge in front of you to see some security towers activating below. Head south and examine a pedestal that offers hints on how to disable the security system.

Now talk to Leblanc, who suggests using a chain to slide down to the towers.  Go north and press X in the right corner to jump off the balcony and slide down.  Move forward and two machina guards force a fight.  After defeating the pair, you’ll get a quick overview of the circular room. There are six towers total - 3 have dimmed lights and 3 have blue lights.  Number the towers 1-6, with Tower #1 being the one you’re standing in front of.  Moving clockwise, disable Towers #1, #3, and #5 (those with blue lights) as follows:

Press X to examine Tower #1 and fight the machina guard that appears. Once defeated, a plate emerges from the center pit, forming a stair.  Do the same with Tower #3, forming another stair in the center.  Now move around to Tower #5 and disable it.  This time, you have to fight a boss.

BOSS:  Precepts Guard
The Precepts Guard uses uses a host of spells (Drain, Osmose, Demi, Bio, Slow, and Death). In its Oversoul form, it adds Magic Catalyst to boost its spell damage. The boss usually opens with Death, so quickly revive the person KO’d. Put Shell on the party and blast it with Warrior’s Magic Break to reduce its spell power. Using a Reflect tactic works to bounce back its spells. While Reflected, toss potions to heal since you don’t want to bounce back curative magic.

After defeating the Precepts Guard, you’ll get a Regen Bangle and a third plate emerges from the center hole.  With the top three stairs now locked into place, you can hop down and enter the sanctum… BUT you’ll miss out on getting a rare Ribbon accessory, plus some other goodies.  I highly recommend sticking around.

To access the Ribbon chest, you need to release three more plates in the center, then rotate them to reach the lowest doorway. Start by disabling the three towers you bypassed - Towers #2, #4, and #6 - each has a pair of dimmed lights that turn red when the tower is touched. Press X to examine Tower #2 and fight the machina guard that appears. Once defeated, a plate emerges in the center, forming a step.  Same procedure for Tower #4 (defeat the machina and release a step).  Now disable Tower #6 and a new boss arrives.

BOSS:  Georapella
Georapella uses top-notch elemental magic on the entire party, as well as Osmose to steal your MP.  Cast Shell and hit it with Magic Break repeatedly. In its Oversoul form, it uses Power Catalyst to boost its Strength over time, so hit it with Power Break.  Use the Reflect tactic to bounce back its spells, if you like.  Keep Pray and Hi-Potions flying around.

After defeating Georapella, you’ll earn a NulTide Ring and the final plate will pop out in the center pit.  Walk over to the pit and you’ll notice that the bottom three plates are stacked on top of each other.  You need to rotate them to form a spiral path.  Here’s where it gets fun…Circle around and look at how the towers are lit - you’ll see 2 red, 2 blue, and 2 dimmed lights:

  • Dimmed = Can be turned red, dimming two others.
  • Red = Selects the plate you want to move.  The top three are locked in place so just ignore them.
  • Blue = These are the two boss towers; they incrementally rotate the selected plate, either left or right.

So, no matter how you look at it, you’ll have to fight either the Precepts Guard or Georapella multiple times to get the bottom three steps positioned correctly.  The good news is, each time you battle them, they’ll drop another Regen Bangle or NulTide Ring (both profitable to sell), plus the EXP they offer will have your party ridiculously leveled up. In fact, you can grind here for as long as you like.  Should you face Precept Guards’ ‘Oversoul’ form, try stealing a Recovery Bracer from it - thus gaining ‘auto-regen’ status early in the game.

You can save your game at any point by walking back up the chain behind Tower #1. Note that three other chains lead to balconies with guarded treasure. Climb them to collect a Glass Buckle, Pearl Necklace, and 500 gil.  After saving, slide back down the chain to Tower #1 and start rotating the bottom three step-plates.  Although there are many ways to proceed, here’s one method:

Defeat the boss at Tower #1 (blue) three times to set the middle plate correctly, then move up one tower (#6) and change its dimmed lights to red.  Move up to the next tower (#5) and defeat the boss four times here to set the bottom plate correctly. Move to the next dimmed tower and change its lights to red.  Move to the next blue tower and fight the boss there until the top plate is finally set to its correct position. When all of the steps are rotated to form a spiral, hop all the way down and pass through the bottom doorway to reach an outer balcony containing the Ribbon chest.  Having officially cleared the area, hop up three plates and enter Bevelle’s Labyrinth.

Inside the [Labyrinth], you’ll be fighting random enemies without a mini-map to guide you. Climb the pillar up ahead to collect 4x Ether then proceed to an intersection.  Look for a chest tucked under the ramp holding 4x Remedy then head east.  Stand in front of the gap until a shuttle arrives. Hop on and ride across to an outer balcony with a chest containing the Downtrodder GG.  Ride the shuttle back and return to the intersection. Go west now. Climb onto the right pillar, followed by the left pillar, to extend the path. Cross over to the next area.

Watch a scene inside the [Gaol] room.  When it ends, collect 5x Phoenix Down from a chest in the n/w corner.  Ignore the western path for now; instead, head south from where Logo and Ormi are standing to reveal a big, purple switchplate on the ground.  Stepping on it stops the Gaol machine.  Step on the plate again to restart Gaol and watch how its piston arms move up and down.  Stop the machine when the arm with the upper doorway is facing towards you (the piston will be lowest on the left, where the gap in the wall is). When done correctly, Yuna will react differently.

Walk over to the gap and jump onto the lowered piston. Climb up the arm to start a mini-game, “Gaol From Afar.” The idea is to have Rikku operate the arms while Yuna explores balconies stacked behind the machine. You can only call to her when Yuna is standing safely on one of the balconies.  Before giving out commands, take a tour around the arms to see where they lead. On the east end, you’ll see an open doorway on Level 1 (bottom). On the west end, you’ll see a chest sitting on Level 3 (top).

Make your way over to the west side and jump onto the middle balcony (Level 2).  Press Square to call out to Rikku and watch as Gaol’s arms move up and down.  Have Rikku stop when the left-rear piston rises the highest and the right-rear piston is in the middle.  Walk over to the middle arm, hop on, and go across the top arm to reach the Level 3 chest, which contains a unique Bloodlust accessory.  While standing on Level 3, call out to Rikku to get the machine moving again.

This time, wait for the left-rear piston to be highest and right-rear piston to be lowest.  Walk across the arms and hop down to the lower right doorway.  Open the chest inside to get a unique Wring accessory.  To get off the machine, have Rikku start moving the arms.  When both rear arms are at their lowest position, tell her to stop.  Make your way over to the front piston’s edge and simply jump down to rejoin the party.

Head west and enter the second part of the [Labyrinth].  Approach the wall up ahead to lower it, revealing a room containing three shuttle lifts.  To access the Dressphere at the end, ride them in the following order:

LEFT = Ride up to a Hi-Potion chest; step on two blocks to activate switches; go far south to drop down
MIDDLE = Ride up and climb onto the block to activate a switch; ride the shuttle back down
RIGHT = Ride up and and head west, returning to the shuttle room
LEFT = Ride up and then ride back down on the same left shuttle.
MIDDLE = Ride up to a new room; step on the block to activate a switch; ride the shuttle back down
LEFT = Ride up; go north and take the 4th shuttle up even higher

Use the Save Point on top.  If you activated all of the switches correctly, a complete path should have formed on the left side.  Follow it down to a chest holding the Dark Knight Dressphere, possibly the best in the game.  Equip it now if you like, and follow the path on the right until a scene takes over.

BOSS:  Baralai
Baralai is extremely fast. Along with physical attacks, he uses Absorb (steals HP/MP), Osmose, and Demi (-25% current HP). He also uses Drill Shot as a counterattack that will kill anyone low on health (it can be learned by Gun Mages).  Open with Protect and Shell, and have Songstress cast Darkness Dance to blind him. Other than that, revive anyone killed by Drill Shot and Esuna anyone inflicted with Stop. As for offense, use Dark Knight’s Darkness and Warrior’s Power Break.

Watch the scene that follows then go back and save your game again.  Move forward into [Limbo] to face a more formidable boss, and one of Yuna’s old friends.

BOSS:  Dark Bahamut
If you want the best results in this battle, make two of your party members Warrior and start walloping him with Power Breaks, Mental Breaks and Armor Breaks. By the time he tries his Megaflare Overdrive, his regular attacks should do almost nothing to you. The third member should turn into a Thief using all Star and Lunar Curtains on hand. These cast Protect and Shell on the entire party.

Watch the scenes that follow, ending both the mission and Chapter 2!  Save your game when prompted.

Scenes continue on the airship showing new ‘hotspots’ in Spira. Press Circle to exit the map screen. As usual, delay going to storyline areas and visit all other locations first.  If O’aka was on board and you paid his entire debt, you’ll get a message saying he’s departed for Macalania.  If he’s still in the Cabin, do not enter Macalania before eliminating the remainder of his debt.

Examine the blue disk next to Shinra’s station. He explains that it’s a CommSphere - a device that allows the crew to communicate remotely. Throughout Chapter 3, Shinra will tag along to install CommSpheres in the places you visit (in some areas he installs more than one).  To get 100%, all Commspheres must be installed before Chapter 3 ends.  Before flying off, raid newly-filled chests in the Engine Room (6x Phoenix Down, 3x Ether, 5x Remedy, and 4x Hi-Potion) and choose to ‘rest’ in the Cabin - another 100% thing.

Return to the Bridge and speak with Buddy to select a new destination. Visit Djose after going to Mushroom Rock but BEFORE doing the story missions in Besaid and Kilika - it’s a %-critical scene and easily missable:

* Besaid Island STORY MISSION, Mini-Game
* Kilika Island STORY MISSION
* Luca Scene, Mini-Game
* Mi’ihen Highroad Mission (“Machina Mayhem!”)
* Mushroom Rock Road Scene
* Djose Temple Scene / STORY MISSION - after 1st two hotspots
* Moonflow Scene
* Guadosalam Scene
* Thunder Plains Scenes x3, Mini-Game
* Macalania Scene, Mission (“Secure the Agency!”)
* Bikanel Desert Mission (“The Cactuar Connection”)
* Bevelle Scene / Side-Quest (Crimson Sphere 1)
* Calm Lands Mission (“Tourist Trap”), Side-Quests (Bridal, Publicity), Mini-Games
* Mt. Gagazet Mission (“Battle Blockade”)
* Zanarkand Scene

If you sided with the Youth League, this area will be marked as a ‘hotspot’.  Either way, move towards the [Ravine] entrance and you’ll see Shinra trying to plant a CommSphere there.  Talk to him and watch as he dashes off past the blockade. Approach the blockade for a scene with Yaibal and Lucil.  When it ends, head north.  Take the stone lift up to a chest containing 2,000 Gil

Now head to Djose Temple on foot to trigger a 100%-critical scene with Gippal. Take the n/e path out of Mushroom Rock to get onto Djose Highroad.  Follow it all the way up to the temple.

Arriving from Mushroom Rock, get 3x Hi-Potion from the chest on [Pilgrimage Road] and get 3x Phoenix Down in the chest near the Save Point.  Approach Gippal at the temple’s entrance to trigger a scene.  When it ends, he’ll give you an Al Bhed Primer.  Shinra's CommSphere will be installed here later...

When you arrive, crowds are gathered for Luca’s Sphere Break tournament, sponsored by Rin! After the scene, you'll be given 20x Coins to use in this math-heavy mini-game. Talk to the beaked fellow standing next to Rin for a breakdown of the rules. To advance in the tournament, you need to beat 3 different people, and cannot lose more than three matches.  Press X to challenge people.  If they are willing to play, you’ll see a screen showing their level of difficulty (based on number of turns and points quota).

For your first two matches, challenge people that are relatively easy to beat.  For example, the old man sitting on the [Bridge] and the guy walking around in the [Square].  After two wins, save your game at the top of the stairs.  For your third match, challenge the woman sitting on the bench on the left side of the Square.  Turns out her dog is the true player. You will have 15 turns to meet the 40 pt. quota - unless you are a math genius, beating pooch will be tough.  The goal, however, is not to win this match but to earn a Garment Grid.

During the dog match, keep an eye out for border coins with the ‘Item’ trait; when one pops up, use it in a chain to get the White Signet GG!  After getting the GG, intentionally lose…just sit back and let time expire.  Save your game again.  Now find an easy player to beat, like the blonde guy leaning against the n/w wall in the Square.  After your third victory, you automatically face the champion… oh my, it’s our little whiz kid!

For the tournament win, you’ll have 15 turns to meet the 50 pt. quota, even tougher than the dog.  Like the dog, look for border coins with the “Item” trait and use one in a chain to get the Treasure Hunt GG.  To actually win the match, make use of 2-coin echoes, and just hope that there aren’t too many ‘core break 1’s played. If you beat the champion, you'll earn the Lady Luck Dressphere.

On your way upstairs to the Save Point, get 3x Lunar Curtain from the chest in the left bushes.  Also, Shinra’s CommSphere is installed near the Luca Café, so you’re good to go.

As soon as you enter Mi’ihen Highroad, you are given a challenge.  Accept and Mission “Machina Mayhem!” starts. There are 13 machina that have gone wild, and two teams (yours and the Al Bhed’s) are competing to destroy them. An on-screen tally keeps track of each team’s score.  Simply put, destroy at least 7 machina tandems so that the other team has no chance of winning.

Locations of the wild machina are marked with green squares on your mini-map. Just run up and press X to instigate a fight. The targets are spread over all parts of Mi’ihen. On [Newroad North], press Circle to jump over to the little machina on the mound.  As you head down the path to [Oldroad], look for a lady staring at the cliff. Press Circle to jump up to another machina on a ledge.  As soon as the 13th tandem is defeated, a scene occurs.  For winning, you receive 10,000 gil and the Undying Storm GG for Mission Complete.

Beam back down to Mi’ihen to collect any chests you missed and to advance the PR/Marriage campaigns.  Make sure Shinra installs two CommSpheres in this region - one near the Travel Agency (which sells new wares) and another on a ledge in [Newroad North]. Shinra will be crouched on the road near that one.

From the Save Point, head east to [South Bank] and watch as Shinra installs a CommSphere on the lakefront. Speak with Tobli twice to trigger a scene involving his next big concert idea. Work on PR points while here.

In Guadosalam, examine the door on the n/w side - it’s still locked, but you’ll get a scene there.  Shinra will place his CommSphere just outside the door. Afterwards, enter the Chateau and watch a scene in the [Living Room] with Logos and Ormi.  When it ends, go upstairs for a scene with Leblanc in her [Private Quarters].  Return to the Living Room for another scene with Logos and Ormi, during which they tell you about a sphere they found.  On the back wall, both doors are now open, so enter the [Hidden Passageway].

Follow the passageway to the Save Point, fighting random enemies along the way. Head west into the room with that chest you couldn’t access earlier. It contains a Tetra Band accessory. Before leaving the room, climb the crates on the left and follow the narrow balcony over to a chest holding Crimson Sphere 4.

Return to the Save Point and head east now. Enter the bedroom up ahead for a scene with Logos and Ormi. After watching their recordings, you receive Logos' Sphere and Ormi's Sphere. Examine the orange orb on the right dresser to get the Gaol Sphere.  Maechen suddenly arrives and the scene continues. Talk to Maechen afterwards and agree to listen to his entire story, which is much more revealing.  Make sure to watch the Crimson 4 report when back on the airship.

Chapter 3 - Thunder Plains

The Al Bhed technician will greet you at the [South] entrance if you haven’t calibrated all of the lightning towers yet.  Shinra will be there, too, installing another CommSphere. Speak with Cid on the west side of the southern plains. The scene counts towards % completion. Collect chests as you move through to get 5x Echo Screen, 2x Hi-Potion, and a Safety Bit

In the [North] plains, raid more chests to get 3x Phoenix Down, 2x Dark Grenade, and 3x Ether. Speak with the two Ronso youths standing inside the n/w shelter (marked with an X on your mini-map) to initiate a scene.  When Lian and Ayde ask where to go, choose to send them somewhere - ideally, “Kilika”.

When you beam down to Macalania, you arrive in front of the Travel Agency and a Mission (“Secure the Agency!”) immediately starts.  Win six consecutive battles without fleeing; all are against random enemies. Upon completing the mission, you receive a bucket of drops along with the Pride of the Sword GG.  The scene continues inside the Agency, where you get the Berserker Dressphere and an Al Bhed Primer.  If you paid off O’aka’s debt, he’ll arrive to try and settle his account. Later, the shop reopens under his control. If you failed to pay off his debt, O’aka will never open a shop here and you’ll miss out on his great inventory.

Either way, leave the Travel Agency and pick up an X-Potion from the chest on the left. One of Shinra’s CommSpheres is installed nearby.  Enter [Lake Road] for a brief scene with O’aka then take the n/e offshoot to the [Spring].  Speak with each of the musicians walking around (3 total) then examine the ‘amorphous gel’ that appears to acquire the Howling Wind GG.

Return to [Lake Road] and use the s/e offshoot to get onto the crystal path. Pick up a Gold Bracer as you head down to [South Woods].  At the bottom, you’ll see Shinra installing another CommSphere near the Save Point.  Follow him up the branch into [Central] woods to collect a NulFrost Ring.

When you arrive, Nhadala asks you to establish diplomatic ties with the local succulents.  Her assistant, Benzo, speaks ‘cacti’ and accompanies you as a translator. Ask the pilot to take you to [Cactuar Nation].

Once there, you’re introduced to Marnela, a giant cactus and matriarch of the group. During the scene, pick "That makes perfect sense!” Afterwards, speak with Marnela to start an ongoing mission (“The Cactuar Connection”) that requires you to find ten little Gatekeepers that have strayed from home.  Chat with Marnela to learn that cacti mothers emit waves of light when awake and offer clues on where their children have run off to.  Ones that are awake will be marked with a green square on your mini-map.

Ignore the glowing cacti near the sealed door.  Instead, locate the first Gatekeeper’s mother. Press X and have Benzo translate for you.  Lobivia’s mother hints that her child was last seen heading north from [Oasis].  Of the 10 Cactuars missing, 6 can be found during Chapter 3.  Each time you find one, a silly mini-game starts. Win or lose, the cactuar will cooperate.  Escort it home to Cactuar Nation, then ask the next mother for a clue.  Rinse and repeat.  Here are the names and locations of the 6 Gatekeepers you can find now:

1 - Lobivia Bikanel in Oasis, near the water
2 - Toumeya Besaid on the Beach, sitting near the shore
3 - Lobeira Guadosalam in Hidden Passageway room, stuck in a chest
4 - Areq Calm Lands on Bridge above gorge, riding a chocobo with #5
5 - Arroja Calm Lands on Bridge above gorge, riding a chocobo with #4
6 - Islaya Thunder Plains In North plains, admiring a stone near lightning shelter

You’ll be able to find the remaining Cactuars in Chapter 5 (a ‘hotspot’ stays in Bikanel until you’ve completed the mission). As for Shinra's CommSpheres, one is installed in Cactuar Nation, and the other is installed in the Al Bhed’s excavation camp.

If you sided with the Youth League, Shinra places a CommSphere at the end of [Highbridge].  You can’t do anything else here.

If you sided with New Yevon, Shinra installs his CommSphere but you can do a few more things. Approach [New Yevon HQ] and watch the scene that unfolds. When it ends, you’ll automatically return to the Celsius.  Beam back down to Bevelle and go all the way through the [Labyrinth] to where you fought Dark Bahamut.  Speak with Pacce here for a scene. Choose "Go for it!" to get the Blood of the Beast GG.

From the airship, you can either beam down to Clasko’s Ranch or the Travel Agency.  At the Agency, Shinra places a CommSphere next to the chicobo at the entrance.  Peruse new wares and chat with the hover reps to see how far you’ve gotten with the PR campaign. Round up chests in the field to receive Spring Shoes (n/w edge), Mega-Phoenix (east), and 3x Ethers (south cliff).  Next, go to the [Ranch] and enter the northern stalls to see that Shinra places another CommSphere on the floor (say hi to your chocobos, too).  Speak with Clasko to get a fresh supply of greens before leaving. 

Now take the n/e exit to the [Bridge]. Open a chest near the Gagazet bridge to get a Hi-Potion, then take the eastern slope down into the [Gorge]. Below, you’ll find a group of people gathered at the cave entrance.  Before talking to them, collect 2x Mega-Phoenix from a chest to the east.  Use the Save Point then approach the cave to trigger a scene involving some missing tourists.  Agree to help find them to start the mission “Tourist Trap”.

Inside the [Cavern of Stolen Fayth], FFX players will be familiar with its myriad of offshoots and alcoves.  There are 15 tourists stuck in the cave.  The goal is to find them and escort them back to the entrance. Some are willing to go back in a group; others have eccentricities you must pay attention to.  Be aware that the cave is filled with monsters, too, so you’ll have to deal with that as you walk back and forth. Here’s the fastest way:

From the entrance room, follow the path then veer east into an alcove with Person #1.  Say, “Follow me” to get them to tag along.  Continue north to find Person #2 collapsed on the ground.  Have him follow then proceed to the next intersection. Have Person #3 follow then veer west to see a man run by.  Backtrack south to catch up with him (Person #4) then escort the group back to the cave entrance. Once there, the four people you rescued give you Energy Cores 1 & 2 plus the Besaid Key (remember that item costing 900,000 gil?).  The Energy Cores restore power to certain teleport pads - more on that later.  For now, resume your search.

Go north, back to the intersection where the guy ran by.  Once there, head east into an alcove with 3 tourists, as well as a White Ring chest.  Ask Persons #5, 6, 7 to follow you then head west. At the next intersection, go north to find 2 more tourists as well as a Blue Ring chest.  With Persons #8 & 9 in tow, escort the group back to the cave entrance.  Once there, the grateful tourists give you Energy Cores 3 & 4. Six more to go…

Again, head north, returning to the 3rd intersection.  Check the eastern nook for a lady and have her follow (Person #10). Proceed west to the next intersection and go west again into what appears to be a dead-end.  Press X in the corner to reveal Person #11. Continue n/w to the end where two kids are huddled near a teleport pad. Ask them to follow you (Persons #12 & 13) then escort the group back to the entrance to receive Energy Cores 5 & 6.  Before resuming your search, go outside and talk to the man on the right to get Energy Core 7.

Re-enter the cave and use the teleport pad to warp to the back room where the kids were.  Once there, press the d-pad to face east and hit X to warp to a [Hidden Chamber].  There, you’ll find a Lightning Gleam chest along with Person #14.  Ask the tourist to follow you then use the teleport pad to warp back to the entrance.  Once there, the man gives you Energy Core 8.

Teleport to the back chamber once more and use the d-pad to face west. Press X to warp to another [Hidden Chamber].  Inside, collect a Wall Ring and Person #15.  Escort the final tourist back the entrance.  Remain in the cave and warp to the back room again.  Heal your party then step on the teleport pad and face north. Press X to reach Yuna’s old mercenary friend.

BOSS:  Dark Yojimbo
Yojimbo is immune to most status changes, so just pound him with physical attacks. Dark Knight's Darkness ability works really well here, even though it saps some life out of the user. Make sure you have some Mega-Potions ready after Yojimbo uses Zanmato, which reduces the party's HP and MP to 1. When you see him raise a hand in front of his face, Zanmato is coming up next. If you can, equip everyone with anti-Poison gear. Knock Yojimbo silly and eventually he'll go down.

Watch the scene that follows, during which you return to the entrance. Mission complete! For saving all 15 tourists and defeating Yojimbo, you receive the excellent Tetra Master GG. The team automatically re-boards the Celsius.  If you return to Dark Yojimbo’s chamber, you can collect a Star Bracer.

When you arrive at the [Mountain Gate], you’ll see Shinra place a CommSphere right away. Approach Kimahri to trigger a scene. He will give you the Trainer Dressphere if you’re prior conversations boosted his confidence. Choose "Let's go" to start the mission “Battle Blockade”.  The goal is to stop Garik from starting a war with the Guado.  Hike all the way up to the [Fayth Scar] on foot, passing several Ronsos along the way.

Once there, go left and enter the [Mountain Cave].  Move upwards through the cave (the offshoots offer nothing but EXP) and use the Save Point on top before exiting. Watch a scene on the [Summit] with Garik. Your earlier conversations with Ronsos affect how this boss battle unfolds.

BOSS:  Garik, Ronso Youth x1 or 2
Garik starts by casting Mighty Guard on himself - Dispel it right away. He can also blind you and inflict Curse. The Ronso Youth(s) rely on magic so just attack physically to take them out. Equip a Gris-Gris Bag to immunize you from Curse, forcing Garik into using only Bane Lance. Have a Songstress keep up Darkness Dance, making all of their attacks less likely to connect. If Garik uses MP Blowout, toss Ether to replenish MP or just remain physical.  Keep a White Mage handy for healing.

For avoiding war, you earn the Wishbringer GG and Mission Complete!  Make sure Shinra installs another CommSphere in the [Hot Springs] area.  As a reminder, it’s above the Fayth Scar, beyond the n/e cave.

When you arrive in Zanarkand, Shinra places a CommSphere at the south entrance.  Make your way through the [Dome], collecting chests as you go.  The woman selling items has expanded her inventory.  Speak with Isaaru in the [Corridor] to trigger a scene. If you skipped the “Operation: Monkey!” mission in Chapter 2, do it now. Last chance.  Round up the remaining chests, too.

Chapter 3 - Besaid (hotspot)

To continue with the main storyline, beam down to Besaid.  Follow Buddy and Shinra into the village.  Speak with Lulu in her hut then go outside to trigger a scene with Shinra testing out his CommSphere. Go the Temple and speak with Beclem to start the mission “Protect Besaid Temple!”  Enter the [Trials] and fight fiends as you descend.  Before approaching Wakka, pass through wall symbols on the right to get 2x Mana Spring from a chest.  Watch a scene with Wakka near the elevator pad then enter the [Chamber of the Fayth] to face Yuna’s beloved Aeon.

BOSS:  Dark Valefor
While Valefor's regular attacks are physical in nature, her overdrives (Energy Ray and Energy Blast) are magic-based. Have a Warrior use all Break abilities, while others use whatever class causes the most damage. The defensive and offensive rating of the Dark Knight will definitely come in handy here, as Valefor tends to ‘smash’ whoever attacks most. Keep a White Mage on stand-by to heal.

After a few scenes, the mission concludes and the crew returns to the airship. Beam back down to Besaid to finish up some business.  Talk to Beclem at the Save Point if you want to play the Gunner’s Gauntlet mini-game. You'll find a Moon Bracer below the waterfall bridge, and on the secluded beach, two chests with 2,500 gil and an X-Potion.

The main reason you’re here is to use the Besaid Key you acquired (hopefully) during the “Tourist Trap” mission in Calm Lands. Assuming you have it, enter the Temple and use the key to unlock the chest in the [Monk’s Chamber] on the right.  Inside, you’ll find a Search Sphere that acts as a dowsing rod while in Besaid. Now talk to the man in the [Nun’s Chamber] on the left.  Tell him you’ve been to the cave and he’ll mention 4 new ciphers to find. 

Leave the Temple and press Circle to activate a signal.  Dig in spots where the signal is strongest (full red bar) to uncover little CommSpheres.  Use them to find 4 (randomized) code numbers hidden in the island’s landscape:

  • Dig behind the village huts on the left / Zoom in to the roof of the temple / Write down # on green orb
  • Dig under pole across from Save Point, near left Blitzball player / Zoom in to cliff top / Write down # on green orb
  • Dig near a pole before reaching bridge / Zoom in to ledge above east waterfall / Write down # on green orb
  • Dig on cliff overlooking water, east of cave / Zoom in to distant palm tree top / Write down # on green orb

Once you have all the numbers, enter the [Cave] and head right.  Examine the wall button and input the 4 code numbers to raise the wall. Follow the new path to a chest with 3x Ether then proceed to the top of the waterfall.  Head west along the upper ridge and collect the Raging Giant GG at the end. On your way back out of the cave, feel free to collect 2x Hi-Potion from the western offshoot.

If you’re hunting Cactuars, catch #2 (Toumeya) on the far end of the beach.  Escort it home to Bikanel and pick up your next clue from a cacti mother.  Before going to Kilika, fetch Cactuars #3-6 in Guadosalam, Calm Lands, and Thunder Plains.  Taking care of this now makes things easier later on.

Chapter 3 - Kilika (hotspot)

Beam down to Kilika’s dock and hop over the boats to get an Ether and 2x Mana Tablet.  Raid other chests containing 3x Antidote, 2x Phoenix Down and 3x Eye Drop.  DO NOT enter Dona’s house before talking to the cameraman in the n/e corner of the [Residential District].  Use his camera to see that construction is progressing across the bay.  Raid nearby chests to get 2x Lunar Curtain, 3x Holy Water, Star Curtain, and 2x Light Curtain.

Once you're done in town, save your game.  Enter Dona’s hut to trigger a scene.  When she leaves, go upstairs to nab 2,000 gil from her balcony.  As you exit Dona’s house, you’re given a choice to rush the gate. Say, “You bet I am” to start a mini-game.  The idea is to dash through when the guards aren’t looking, using the R1 button to toggle three points of view.  Dona will distract the guard on the right. Wait for the guard on the left to open the gate for a resident, then quickly press X when Dona’s guard is looking the other way.  He turns his head towards the gate often, so take your time.  You only get one shot at it.  If you pass through undetected, a Bushido Lore chest will be waiting for you.

Either way, Dona tells you to use the treetops to get past blockades in the [Woods]. When you regain control, check all three offshoots for scenes at the barriers. When you return to the narrow path under the log, a scene takes place.  Follow Rikku and Paine across the branches and up the stairs.  Fight a few elite soldiers as you ascend to the [Temple]. 

At the entrance, mission “Pest Control” starts.  There’s a traveling merchant here if you need items.  Shinra, brave lad, will be here, too, installing a CommSphere.  Use the Save Point inside the Temple before riding the lift down to the [Trials].  As soon as you pass through the door, a Daeva attacks. Watch a scene with Barthello, and when it ends, approach the blue flame for another Daeva battle.  Pass through and fight three more demons as you extinguish blue flames on the left, right and center walls.

Two more Daevas wait in the next room.  Defeat them to eliminate another barrier.  As you walk down the steps, look for a small orange sphere on the floor.  Pick it up to receive the Samurai Dressphere. Go upstairs to meet up with another old friend of Yuna’s.

BOSS:  Dark Ifrit
Black Mages can thrive here, since the boss is weak to ice magic. Dark Ifrit absorbs fire and attacks with fire, so equip anything that protects against that element. Warrior’s Mental Break and Power Break also help reduce damage sustained. If you have a Dark Knight or a Thief that can also heal, use them for double-duty.

With another mission completed, watch scenes on board the Celsius.  If you already finished the storyline mission in Besaid, a new ‘hotspot’ appears in Djose.  Delay going there, as it will end the chapter.  It’s very important that you revisit Bevelle to pick up a 100%-critical sphere.  So critical, in fact, it should be listed as a hotspot…

When you enter Bevelle, you’ll catch a glimpse of GIppal up ahead.  Let’s go see what he’s up to.  If you’re aligned with the Youth League, you can proceed to [New Yevon HQ] without any interference this time.  Once inside, ride the center shuttle up and go through the door to reach a terrace overlooking Central.  Talk to two priests pacing here to get a Hypno Crown and Electrocutioner. A shuttle on the right can be set to 'direct mode' to bypass the Trials - ignore it and go back inside Headquarters.

Ride down to the lobby and head west into the room with two pedestals. Examine the lower pedestal (s/e) to reset the central lift.  Return to the lobby and hop on the shuttle to ride down to the [Trials].  Raid six new chests containing an Oath Veil5,000 gil4x Remedy9x Potion5x Phoenix Down, and Hi-Potions as you retrace your steps back to the Restricted Area. (If you need a refresher on how to get there, refer to Chapter 2’s Bevelle section.)

When you reach the [Antechamber], you’ll see Gippal again briefly. Use the Save Point and nab 2x Chocobo Feather from the chest before dropping down into the Fayth hole.  In the [Restricted Area], slide down the chain.  If you took the time to get the Ribbon, all the security towers are still set to how you left them.  If you did not get the Ribbon, now’s your chance.  Random enemies have moved in and the upper balcony chests have been restocked.  Climb chains behind three towers to get a Beaded Brooch, Faerie Earrings and 800 gil.

Hop down three center plates to re-enter the [Labyrinth]. Collect chests for 5x Ether and 5x Remedy, and at the intersection, head west.  Climb both columns to extend the path and move forward into the [Gaol] room.  The n/w chest contains 6x Phoenix Down. Nothing is gained by riding the Gaol arms again. Take the western path into the 2nd part of the [Labyrinth], lower the wall, and enter the room with three shuttles. Ride the left one up to a chest with a Remedy.  Assuming you got the Dark Knight Dressphere earlier, just reset the two blocks so that you can ride shuttle #4 (north) up to the Save Point.

Proceed down the hall to trigger a lengthy scene, where many secrets are revealed.  As the girls listen in, a giant Malboro attacks.  Though not technically a boss, I’ve added it here in case you’ve never fought one.

BOSS:  Malboro
Dark Knights that have mastered anti-status skills (or anyone wearing Ribbon) will have the best shot at surviving if the boss uses Bad Breath, which causes every possible malady. It also uses Squirt to inflict four Breaks on your girls, so the longer you take to kill it, the more damage you'll receive and less damage you'll be causing.  You can inflict Breaks on it as well, thus making the battle a tad easier.  Just keep attacking mercilessly - hopefully, it’ll be dead before Bad Breath strikes.

More scenes follow. When you regain control, grab Crimson Sphere 1 off the ground in front of you - it’s the main reason we’re here.  Trek back to the Save Point to beam out.  Make sure to watch ‘Crimson Record 1’ with Shinra once you’re back on the airship.

Chapter 3 - Djose Temple (hotspot)

When you’re ready to end the chapter, beam down to Djose Temple.  Watch a scene outside (acquiring an Al Bhed Primer) then start the mission “No Way, Djose!”  Enter the [Great Hall] to see that Shinra has installed a CommSphere there.  In the western [Living Quarters], nab a Remedy then go upstairs to enter the [Trials].

Fight random enemies as you move forward and jump across the gap to get a Stamina Spring. Ride the circular platform up. On top, head north and collect a Wristband. Push the five pedestals into slots - one releases the electric barrier to the south; the others cause battles.  With the barrier gone, enter the [Cloister] for a brief scene and another encounter with a Dark Aeon.

BOSS:  Dark Ixion
Dark Ixion uses powerful Thunder-based spells and has high evasion. Coming into this battle with NulShock Rings is a good idea.  Casting Shell and Protect on everyone will be really helpful. Use Break abilities to cripple Dark Ixion. Have Black Mages cast water-based spells to deal high damage. Heal when needed.

For completing the mission, you earn the Unwavering Guard GG.  Watch the scene that follows, adding Crimson Spheres 2 & 3 to your collection.  When you gain control of Yuna, run around a bit. As soon as she says, “I’m all alone” mash the X button like crazy until you hear FOUR whistles - If you fail here, you cannot get 100% nor see the ‘perfect’ ending (yes, there’s more than one).  Either way, Chapter 3 ends.  Save your game.

After some scenes on the Bridge, head towards the elevator for a brief scene with Rikku.  Loot the Engine Room chests to get 7x Phoenix Down3x Turbo Ether6x Remedy, and 8x Hi-Potion and then rest in the Cabin. After resting, speak with Paine on the upper [Deck] to learn more about her past.  Return to the Bridge for more scenes, during which you’ll get an Al Bhed Primer.  

Speak with Shinra to bring up his new CommSphere Network tab, showing CS beacons placed all over Spira. Four areas are functional right now. Connect to all of them (press R1 to zoom in/out, and use the d-pad to pan left/right):

% - BESAID - Zoom in on Wakka’s hut and chat with him when he walks out
% - KILIKA - Dona carries the CS to her house; chat with her there
% - MUSHROOM ROCK - Speak with Yaibal when he arrives / If you sided w/New Yevon: CS in ocean; Shinra comments on shoopuf underwater
% - BEVELLE - Speak with Maroda when he arrives (transmission ends if you sided w/Youth League)

Speak with Buddy afterwards for a lengthy scene, during which a new ‘hotspot’ appears in Moonflow. When the scene ends, speak with Paine about the “Hymn of the Fayth” (another 100% thing).  Before dashing off to Moonflow, view records contained on Crimson Spheres 2 & 3 and watch new CS transmissions with Shinra.  

Chapter 4 - CommSphere Scenes, Part 1

Of the many CS scenes available right now, view all with % noted.  Some scenes randomly repeat; others offer clues that are relevant to later quests.  Some take a while to unfold, so be patient (pan or zoom to help trigger events).  Save Mi’ihen Highroad for last, since it is more complex:

0 - Watch two children play hide & seek
0 - A dog investigates the Commsphere
% - Wakka emerges from the tent and talks about the baby; keep watching until he leaves the village
0 - The Aurochs practice Blitzball and Yuna chats with them
0 - One Auroch hits Keepa by accident and runs off
% - Pan to the left to see Beclem chastising the Aurochs
0 - Look away from Blitzball practice and wait for a ball to hit the CS; Shinra complains

0 - Dona’s window; pan right and zoom in; Dona enters and chats about meeting Lian & Ayde (if you sent them to Kilika)
0 - Dona chats about local politics
0 - Dona takes a nap; zoom in to hear her mumbling about Barthello
0 - Dona’s empty room

% - Zoom in on temple entrance; chat with Barthello when he arrives and accidentally breaks the CS
0 - Picture is distorted; Shinra comments that the CS is broken

0 - Shelinda interviews a female citizen
0 - Shelinda interviews a male citizen
% - Shelinda interviews a man on docks who mentions upcoming Blitzball season
0 - The CS experiences technical difficulties; Shinra comments

0 - If you sided with New Yevon:  CS tossed in the ocean, ending all transmissions
0 - If you sided with Youth League:  Zoom in on left guard’s face to annoy him
0 - If you sided with Youth League:  The guard chats about why he joined Youth League
0 - If you sided with Youth League:  The guard is sarcastic
0 - If you sided with Youth League:  The guard brags that Youth League is prepared to fight
0 - If you sided with Youth League:  The guard mentions Lucil
0 - If you sided with Youth League:  The guard sits down

% - Al Bhed technician approaches and tells you they’re holding firm - get an Al Bhed Primer
0 - Technician enters and relays rumor about a powerful fiend in Bikanel
% - Technician enters and tells Yuna the hole she fell through is being excavated
0 - Technician speaks with Al Bhed female (on the right) about shortage of parts in Bikanel
0 - Female Al Bhed tries to recall a password involving a talking cactus - get an Al Bhed Primer
0 - Female Al Bhed steals the CS to fix her machine, ending further transmissions

0 - Pan right to see a Hypello enter; Yuna asks where Tobli is but the Hypello doesn’t know
0 - Three Hypellos practice for the show; one comments
0 - Three Hypellos practice and wave arms
0 - Three Hypello enter and have a silent conversation (randomly repeats)

% - Ormi comes out and tells Yuna that Leblanc is looking for Nooj; he re-enters Chateau
0 - Guards walk around and a Hypello enters from the left (randomly repeats)
0 - The guards chat about Leblanc’s disappearance; Shinra comments
0 - The guards discuss why they joined the Syndicate; Yuna and Shinra comment
0 - Fem-Goon enters Chateau and waves (randomly repeats)

% - Pan right to catch a chocobo with Shinra’s new ChocoPorter device
0 - Catch a chocobo near the tower; Shinra comments that his device is fritzing out
0 - Transmission becomes dark and distorted

% - The musicians appear and talk about the dying woods then disappear
0 - If you stopped Garik: Two Guado enter, indicating that war was avoided (the scene repeats)
0 - If you did not stop Garik: Ronso youths enter and start a war (2 scenes)

0 - If Al Bhed still run the shop: Al Bhed woman tells you she’s leaving due to fiends - get Al Bhed Primer
% - If O’aka’s debt was paid: O’aka comes out and chats with Yuna (zoom in to entrance each time)
0 - If O’aka’s debt was paid: O’aka comes out and moans about having no customers
0 - If O’aka’s debt was paid: O’aka comes out and mentions someone has been gone a year
0 - If O’aka’s debt was paid: O’aka tries out a sales pitch
0 - If O’aka’s debt was paid: O’aka tries a sales pitch in Al Bhed
0 - If O’aka’s debt was paid: Wantz enters on right and frets about how long he’s been gone
0 - A Flan slithers by (randomly repeats)
0 - A Barbuta attacks the shop (randomly repeats)
0 - A Barbuta attacks the shop while a Flan slithers by (randomly repeats)
0 - Nothing happening outside the shop (randomly repeats)

% - Zoom in on Nhadala; she chats about the fiend in the desert; Shinra comments (funny!)
0 - Picket flies around while workers dig (randomly repeats)

% - Zoom in on Marnela; Yuna realizes it’s silly to talk to the cactus without Benzo
0 - The cacti chatter in the desert (randomly repeats)

% - If you sided with Youth League: CS shot at, ending all further transmissions
0 - If you sided with New Yevon: Captain scolds his guards for letting Maroda get away
0 - If you sided with New Yevon: The Kinderguardians beat up some soldiers and escape
0 - If you sided with New Yevon: The Kinderguardians admire the CS and chat with Shinra

0 - Watch customers coming and going (randomly repeats)
0 - The unmarried man stands up and walks over to the back; his father comforts him
0 - The father hides 50,000 gil in a chest behind the Agency then returns to his post
0 - A fiend attacks and eats the CS, ending further transmissions; Shinra comments

0 - If you DIDN’T catch a chocobo:  Clasko sulks in an empty stall
% - If you caught a chocobo: Clasko runs in and talks to the chocobo in its stall
% - If you caught a chocobo: Clasko tells Yuna he’ll take good care of her chocobos
0 - If you caught a chocobo: Clasko returns with runaway chocobo, hoping Yuna doesn’t find out
0 - If you caught a chocobo: Clasko pets the chocobo (randomly repeats)

% - Pan over to Kimahri; Yuna chats with him about upcoming concert
0 - Kimahri’s female companion gives him a back rub (repeats)

% - A Ronso soaks in the spring, comments and moves to a new spot
% - A cactuar appears in lower right corner briefly; Yuna comments as it dashes off
% - Tobli emerges from the spring; trips when girls spot him and runs off
% - Zoom in to see that the bobbing heads are a huge group of Hypello; they emerge and leave
% - Shoopufs bathing; zoom in as one approaches and Shinra comments
% - A man swims alone; Yuna comments
% - Buddy gets a back massage from Barkeep >> Scene follows on board the airship
% - O’aka tries more sales pitches; Shinra comments
% - Wantz spies on girls bathing; falls when he gets caught
% - Isaaru, Maroda, and Pacce reunite; kids nod and wave at CS
% - Lucil and Elma discuss Clasko; Lucil leaves
% - Zoom in on Maechen as he tries to teach a monkey; Maechen eventually leaves
% - If you caught a chocobo: Clasko wants to bathe with it; chocobo runs off
% - Cid, Nhadala, and Rin discuss the Al Bhed’s future; Rin eventually leaves
% - Dona bathes alone and is upset by it

0 - Tourists gathered at the entrance

Of special importance is the Commsphere on Mi’ihen Highroad.  The first time you connect, Rin walks out of the Travel Agency and asks Yuna for help in solving the mystery behind the machinas going wild. Using 8 cameras installed along the Highroad, gather clues in each area - press R2 to switch between them.  Note that CAM 7 will only be available if you watched Shinra place the Commsphere on the ledge after “Machina Mayhem!”  When you see suspicious activity, press Circle to have Rin come and investigate. For the best outcome, examine cameras (and call on Rin) in the following order:

CAM 3: Ruins A machina appears from behind ruins Rin finds footprints
CAM 4: Newroad A group of people gathered on road Rin sees something fell in ravine - Level Up
CAM 5: Hover Crash Site Three machina approach wrecked hover Rin finds injured man
CAM 7: Shinra’s 2nd CS Empty ledge Rin finds nothing unusual (which is okay)
CAM 2: Back of Agency Calli messes with panel on left Rin is curious why she ran away
CAM 1: Front of Agency Chocobo Eater enters and chases birds Rin comments on fiend activity
CAM 4: Newroad Chocobo Eater chases hover Rin comments - Level Up
CAM 1: Front of Agency Pan left to find Rin near injured man Rin assures you that he’ll help the man
CAM 2: Back of Agency Tilt up to roof and watch as man hammers Rin sees man fall off roof; has enough clues

Once Rin says he has enough information to go on, press Square to end the transmission. Rin will share the results of his investigation in Chapter 5.  Although there are five possible suspects to pin the blame on (Chocobo Eater, Rikku, Calli, Prophet, or Rin), the scenario above guarantees that Rikku will be named the culprit - which is good for %.

After dealing with CommSpheres, speak with Buddy to fly directly to to Moonflow. As soon as you arrive, the mission (“Where’s Tobli?”) starts.  Beginning on [South Bank Road], move forward until a scene occurs. Debt collectors are pursuing Tobli and you must catch him before they do. 

When Tobli emerges from his hiding spot, join the pursuit, heading north. At [South Wharf], talk to the men and watch as Tobli dashes off again.  Backtrack south until you spot Tobli running out of the bushes.  Further south, Tobli speeds by on a hover.  Head north to find the crashed hover stranded near the water. Go west and ride the shoopuf across to [North Wharf].  From here, head west onto [North Bank Road].  Follow the road until a scene takes over.  When it ends, approach Guadosalam to finally catch up with Tobli.

Mission Complete! For helping Tobli escape his creditors, you earn the Black Tabard GG.  Scenes continue on board the Celsius with Tobli dispatching his Hypello crew to help spread the word about Yuna’s concert.

After rescuing Tobli, DO NOT enter the Cabin yet.  First, check all of the Commspheres again - ones that offer % are noted:

% - Zoom in on Beclem to start a conversation
% - Zoom in on Wakka & Lulu’s hut; chat with both until they leave
0 - The Aurochs chat with Yuna, while a Hypello stands nearby
0 - The Aurochs do a mock interview with Wakka
0 - The Aurochs do a mock interview with Wakka, again
0 - Wakka paces restlessly (randomly repeats)

% - Zoom in on Dona as she practices apologizing to Barthello; Hypello arrives (left) and mentions the concert
0 - Dona stands near the window; practices chastising Barthello; Shinra comments
% - Dona ties the CS to a balloon and sends it to the Temple
% - Barthello receives the CS; Yuna chats with him and, overcome by emotion, he shatters the CS

0 - Shelinda promotes Yuna’s concert
0 - Luca Goers run laps on the stairs, as Logos runs through frame (randomly repeats)
0 - Luca Goers run laps in the Square while a Hypello dances (randomly repeats)
0 - Hypellos gather citizens on the Bridge to promote the concert (randomly repeats)
0 - Poor reception - transmission ends

0 - Empty store front if you already finished Rin’s investigation

MUSHROOM ROCK - only available if you sided w/Youth League
% - Lucil turns around and tells Yuna that she’ll try to stop the war
% - Yaibal arrives and Yuna convinces him to go to the concert
0 - Yaibal eventually arrives and tells squad they are going on a special ‘mission’
0 - Guard on the left complains that everyone is leaving
0 - Guard whines about wanting to go to the concert
0 - Guard is gone; a Hypello dances as Lucil watches (randomly repeats)

* - no scenes if CS was stolen (otherwise, scenes repeat from earlier)

% - A Hypello won’t let Elma take chocobo on the shoopuf; zoom in to chat with Elma
0 - A Hypello reports on promotion efforts then a shoopuf smashes the CS; Shinra comments

% - Ormi arrives and chats with Yuna about the concert
0 - Fem-Goon talks to guard and enters the Chateau
0 - Two Fem-Goons discuss the concert and Leblanc
0 - Two Fem-Goons discuss whether they should hijack the concert; Shinra comments
0 - Guard and Fem-Goon debate who is classier, Yuna or Leblanc; Yuna comments
0 - Ormi comes out and poses for CS (randomly repeats)
0 - A Fem-Goon waves at the CS and enters the Chateau (randomly repeats)
0 - A Hypello tries to speak with the guards but is ignored (randomly repeats)

0 - Hypellos gather people for the concert

% - Zoom left and the musicians appear, wishing Yuna well for her concert; transmission abruptly ends
0 - Pukutak appears, waves goodbye and vanishes
0 - Donga appears, beats his drum and vanishes
0 - Bayra appears with the other two, woods become dark and they all vanish; flash cuts follow
0 - Two Guados stand near an Amorphous Gel (randomly repeats)

% - If O’aka’s debt was paid: O’aka arrives and asks Yuna about the concert; he departs for the show
0 - Fiends attack the shop; pan right and wait for a Hypello to encounter them; he runs away
0 - A Flan slowly slithers by the shop (randomly repeats)
0 - A Barbuta attacks the shop while a Flan slithers by (randomly repeats)
0 - A Barbuta attacks the shop (randomly repeats)

0 - Chat with Nhadala about the desert fiend; watch as an explosion destroys the CS; Shinra comments

% - Zoom in on Marnela; Yuna asks Shinra if he can talk to cacti; Benzo arrives and translates; Shinra comments
0 - Shinra comments that the sandstorm broke the CS

* - If you sided with Youth League: CS was destroyed / If you sided with New Yevon: Hypello chats with guards

* - no scenes if CS was eaten (otherwise, scenes repeat from earlier)

0 - If you caught a chocobo:  Clasko pets the chocobo in its stall (randomly repeats)
0 - If you caught a chocobo:  Clasko is knocked down by the chocobo (randomly repeats)

0 - If you stopped Garik: Garik approaches and talks about how to unite Ronso youth
0 - If you stopped Garik: A Ronso youth enters from left and tells Kimahri he’s going to the concert
0 - If you stopped Garik: The CS is covered in snow; move it, and a Ronso gal will partially clean it off
0 - If you stopped Garik: Kimahri takes an oath to protect the Ronso
0 - If you stopped Garik: Female Ronso approaches and comments on Kimahri’s wisdom
0 - Garik approaches the CS and remarks on the future of Ronso youth
0 - Kimahri’s female companion gives him a back rub as Ronso walks by (randomly repeats)

* - An empty pool, unless you missed scenes earlier

% - Pan right to see Isaaru with a Hypello; he chats with Yuna about the concert
% - Isaaru chats with Yuna about Bevelle’s problems
% - Pan left to find Isaaru laying on the ground; he questions staying in Zanarkand
0 - Isaaru is gone; a Hypello and three ladies dance at entrance (repeats)

After dealing with the CommSpheres, save your game in the hallway then ride down to the Cabin.  As soon as you enter, a mini-game starts.  Rikku is practicing her dance moves for the concert and wants Yuna to join in.  A tutorial tells you to follow the beat of the music and press buttons as they appear on screen.  To earn the most points, completely ignore that advice and have Yuna dance like a crazy woman - mash all buttons as fast as you can until the rehearsal ends.  Prizes are awarded based on how well you did: 0-49 = Pearl Necklace / 50-99 = Safety Bit / 100-149 = Sublimator / 150+ = Shmooth Shailing

If you won the Shmooth Shailing accessory, know that it immunizes you to everything including Death (it’s a super-Ribbon basically). The drawback is that you're perpetually Slowed unless you equip Auto-Haste.  In any event, return to the Bridge after the rehearsal.  Speak with Buddy when you’re ready to fly to the Thunder Plains.

As soon as you arrive, the Mission “Concert Clean-up” starts. Apparently, a monster has crawled out of its hole and the girls have to defeat it before the concert can begin.  To find it’s lair, just follow the red arrow on your mini-map. Feel free to pick up chests first:  In the southern half, you’ll find 6x Echo Screen, an X-Potion, and a Glass Buckle. In the northern half, get 4x Phoenix Down2x Petrify Grenade, and Turbo Ether.

When ready, go to the n/e end of [South] plains and speak with the Hypello outside to heal the party.  Enter the [Fiend Haunt] and move forward to an intersection.  Go east to get an X-Potion then return to the intersection and head west.  Move past some loose stones on the right, and go all the way north for a chest containing a Haste Bangle.  Now return to the stones and climb up.  Hop across the gap to reach a 4-way split.

At the split, you’ll see the boss sleeping on the far end of the cave.  First, head east to pick up 2x Phoenix Down then return to the intersection and go north, dropping down onto the lower path.  Re-orient yourself when the camera angle changes and climb the n/e rocks to reach a chest containing an Elixir.  Now climb the n/w rocks and jump across to engage the boss.

BOSS:  Zalamander
In addition to regular attacks, Zalamander uses Flame Breath (hits all) and Tail Smash (removes 25% of max HP and Delays). Cast Protect/Shell and use Darkness Dance to blind the boss. Zalamander has high magic defense so hit with physical attacks or use Samurai’s Sparkler to inflict ranged damage. The boss is also vulnerable to Berserker’s Eject (as well as Thief’s Steal Will and Trainer’s Kogoro Strike) - use any of those skills for an easy victory. 

After the battle, open the chest it was guarding to get a Black Ring.  Exit the dungeon the same way you came in.  Watch a scene outside for ‘Mission Complete’ as the crew automatically returns to the airship.

Chapter 4 - Airship & Concert

CAUTION. The events below must be done in a certain order to get 100% completion:

When you regain control on the Bridge, immediately speak with Rikku to hear her say, “I’m getting kinda nervous…”  After that, talk to the rest of the crew in the following order: Brother (twice) > Buddy (twice) > Paine (once) > Shinra (once) > Rikku (triggers a scene)

If you don’t trigger a scene after talking with Rikku the second time (for example, if one happens earlier), you might want to reload a previous save.  Either way, Tobli arrives on the Bridge. Talk to him and choose: "On with the show!" to start Yuna’s concert.  Sit back and enjoy the fully-rendered sequence.

After the concert (sniffles), watch a scene in the Cabin then return to the Bridge.  Save your game in the hallway before entering.  Maechen is there with another story to tell.  When it ends, DO NOT talk to Shinra - first, go down to the Engine Room to chat with Leblanc and her sidekicks.  During the scene, you receive Crimson Sphere 5.  Now return to the Bridge and speak with Shinra to initiate several scenes…and to end Chapter 4.

When you regain control of Yuna, go to the Cabin and ‘rest’.  Upon waking, you’ll overhear Brother talking to Barkeep. Listen in from the balcony. When Brother leaves, walk downstairs to meet Barkeep’s new lady friend, Darling; she opens a ‘Pet Shop’ and remains on the airship from now on (along a few more chocobos).  The Pet Shop allows you to rename pets used with the Trainer Dressphere you received from Kimahri.

Go to the Bridge for a scene, wherein the crew ponders which ‘hole’ to jump into to reach the Farplane.  DO NOT talk to anyone yet - first, go to the Engine Room and walk to the very end of it.  On your way back, Buddy arrives and tells you how he came to acquire the Celsius.  How much of his story you hear depends on your completion percentage - you can only hear the last part on your 2nd playthrough. After Buddy leaves, raid the new chests to get 7x Remedy, 4x Turbo Ether, 8x Phoenix Down and 4x X-Potion.  Return to the Bridge afterwards.

Brother has come up with a list of Farplane entry points and will remain stationed in the center awaiting your reply throughout Chapter 5 - just ignore him, there is so much left to do before ending the game.  View the Crimson Sphere 5 report with Shinra then speak with Buddy to see that all locations now have ‘hotspots’ next to them.  To achieve 100%, you need to get ‘Episode Complete’ in each of these locations - in some areas, more than one ‘Episode Complete’ is required.

DO NOT visit Zanarkand last - another % thing.  Also, avoid going to the Calm Lands until you’ve rounded up all remaining PR points in Spira. Apart from that, visit areas in any order you wish:

* Besaid Island Scene, Mini-Game
* Kilika Island Scene
* Luca Scene, Mini-Game, Mission (“Follow That Moogle!”)
* Mi’ihen Highroad Scene, Side-Quest (Fiend Colony)
** Mushroom Rock Road Scene, Mission (“Youth League Tournament”)*, Side-Quest (Den of Woe)
* Djose Temple Scene, Mission (“Masterpiece Theater”)
* Moonflow Scene
* Guadosalam Scene
** Thunder Plains Mission (“A Fallen Genius?”), Side-Quest (New Cave)
** Macalania Scenes x2
***** Bikanel Desert Mission (“The Last Cactuar”), Mission (“Showdown in the Sands”), Mini-Game
* Bevelle Scene, Side-Quest (Via Infinito)
* Calm Lands Scene, Side-Quest (Ruin Depths), Mini-Games
** Mt. Gagazet Scene
* Zanarkand Scene

After a scene at the entrance, you get ‘Episode Complete’ if Isaaru is gone, the tourists are gone, and the monkeys are happy.  Maechen will arrive in Zanarkand to complete his story, too, if you shook his hand way back in Chapter 1. Agree to listen once again.  Round up chests in the [Dome] for 3x Dispel Tonic and 4x Phoenix Down. If you still see Isaaru in the ruins, you will not be able to get an ‘Episode Complete’ in Bevelle.  Either way, the Cloister is now closed.

Wakka approaches with good news when you arrive.  Enter the village and chat with Wakka and Lulu at the Temple entrance.  When the scene ends, leave the village and head towards the beach.  On your way there, drop down from the bridge to pick up Yuna’s special Twilight Rain Dressphere.  Inside the [Cave], you’ll find 4x Ethers on the eastern path (if you raised the wall) and a Mega-Potion at the end of the western offshoot.

When you arrive on the [Beach], head over to the dock and speak with Beclem to get the War Buddy Sphere.  After he boards the ship, return to the village. On your way, check the secluded beach alcove to get 3,500 Gil and 2x X-Potions. At the [Prominence], Wakka will catch up with you.  After watching the sphere together (FFX players will recognize its significance), continue down to the village.

If you still want to play “Gunner’s Gauntlet”, talk to Datto near the Save Point; otherwise, watch more scenes in the village and bid farewell to Besaid.  Episode Complete!

In Kilika, do the usual sweep of chests around the [Dock] to get an Ether, Remedy, 2x Remedy2x Mana Tablet, and 3x Phoenix Down.  If you already captured 13 Squatter Monkeys in the woods, talk to the woman on the s/e dock to receive the Chaos Maelstrom GG.  If not, return to her after you’ve done so.

Watch a scene with Dona as you enter the [Residential District]. When it ends, you’ll be inside Kilika Woods. Take the n/e path over to the water’s edge and press Circle to climb up the tree trunk.  Open the chest on top to get an Arcane Lore accessory…and if you’re hunting Cactuars, you’ll see #7 (Chiapa) hopping up and down next to it. Tag the green fellow and escort it home to Bikanel after you’re done here.

Return to ground level and head north. Start climbing the stairs until a scene takes over, showing Dona and Barthello’s long-awaited reunion. When it ends, you get ‘Episode Complete’ along with the Tricks of the Trade GG and automatically re-board the Celsius.

Beam back down to Kilika to collect chests in the [Residential District] that contain 3x Star Curtain, Dispel Tonic3x Light Curtain, and 3x Lunar Curtain. The chest on Dona’s balcony holds 3,000 gil.  Note that Cactuar #9 (Bartchella) will be prancing around in Dona’s living room eventually.

If you spoke to the cameraman on the n/e end during Chapters 1 and 3, talk to him again. View the building across the bay to see that construction is finally finished. When he asks if you want to tour it, say “Definitely!”  As seen through his blurry lens, ride over on the ferry and explore the west side for a chest containing the rare and awesome Invincible accessory (equips Break-Damage Limit).  Tag the kid running around on the right to get 5x Georapella Coins before riding the ferry back to town.

Once there, make your way through the woods and up to Kilika Temple.  Collect an Ether, X-Potion, and Mega-Potion at the entrance, and explore both [Living Quarters] to get a Megalixir, Regen Bangle and Wall Ring. Enter the Temple’s [Cloister] to corral chests holding a Cat’s Bell, Wizard Bracelet2x Ether, and 2x Turbo Ethers

You arrive in front of Luca’s [Stadium] to learn that Bitzball season has finally begun.  Say, “Let’s play!” to bring up a tutorial that explains the rules. FFX veterans should know that Blitzball rules are different this time around. There is no penalty for declining to participate in the mini-game.

When ready, head over to the [Square] and climb the eastern stairs. Grab 3x Light Curtain from a chest on the bridge then go over to the Save Point.  Once there, move south to the railing for a scene. As Yuna reflects on her past, a little moogle appears…and the mission “Follow That Moogle!” begins.

Go downstairs and catch the adorable creature to prompt another memory. Follow the moogle to the [Bridge].  After seeing a memory there, find the moogle on [Dock 2], just left of the Stadium. Approach it near the ship to trigger a scene - and to end the mission.  Episode Complete!

When you arrive, follow the n/e branches around to collect a Snow Ring then backtrack to the Save Point and walk up the crystal path. Collect a Rune Bracer from the northern offshoot and proceed down to [Lake Road]. Enter the n/e [Spring] and talk to the person standing near the water to trigger a scene. When it ends, take Lake Road up to the Travel Agency.

Watch a scene at the entrance.  If O’aka owns the shop, you get ‘Episode Complete’.  If the Al Bhed still own the shop, you’re out of luck.  Either way, collect an Elixir from the chest then enter the Travel Agency.  The Al Bhed sell mostly junk - however, if O’aka owns the shop, you’re in for a real treat.  Both he and Wantz sell some of the best accessories in the game.  When finished with your shopping spree, use the Save Point inside then return to Lake Road.

Follow the crystal path back down to the Save Point.  On the bottom, head east. Veer south into the lower [Springs] to trigger a scene with Yuna recalling a ‘special moment’ that took place here.  Approach the water to earn a second ‘Episode Complete’ and the Ray of Hope GG.  The crew returns to the airship afterwards.

Watch a lovely concert in front of the Chateau, during which Tromell thanks Yuna for helping the Guado.  When he leaves, enter the Chateau for a brief scene then visit Tobli’s production office on the east side of town.  Inside, you’ll find a chest.  Its contents depend on how well you did in previous missions for Tobli.  I got Kaiser Knuckles.  The item shop sells new wares if you care to peruse and the Inn’s data dealer will mention four secret dungeons rumored to exist in Spira if you ask him for any new data. When ready, walk back down to the Chateau to find Tromell standing next to the musicians.  Speak with him there to get ‘Episode Complete’ and to automatically re-board the Celsius.

Beam back down to Guadosalam to find Tromell standing next to that locked door on the n/w end. Speak with him to finally gain access to the room. Inside, a young Guado will give you the Tempered Will GG if you met Lian and Ayde on the Thunder Plains in Chapter 3 and sent them somewhere.  When the scene ends, open two chests to acquire Baralai's Sphere and a Tetra Bracelet.  Make sure to watch Baralai’s Sphere on board the airship - it’s file is called ‘Yevon’s Secret’.

Head east to [South Bank] where you’ll see a concert taking place…on a shoopuf.  Speak with Tobli and choose to “go on stage’.  During the performance, shift camera angles (press R1/R2) or just sit back and relax.  When you’re ready to hop off the shoopuf, press Circle.  Joining in earns you ‘Episode Complete’ and the team returns to the airship automatically. (You will not get Episode Complete if you skipped any of Tobli’s missions or lost any luggage off the cart.)

Chapter 5 - Djose Temple (pt. 1)

From the Djose Temple entrance, head south to collect 2x X-Potions on [Pilgrimage Road]. Walk back up and enter the [Great Hall] to prompt a scene with the Machine Faction describing an Experiment they’re working on.  If you avoided digging in Bikanel, the mechanical creature will start at Levels 1/1/1 (reflecting its current Attack/Defense/Special parameters). Agree to take on the Experiment to begin the mission “Masterpiece Theater”.  Inside the [Trials], you face the Experiment right away.

BOSS:  Experiment (1/1/1)
When fighting the Level 1 Experiment, all it can do is physically attack. Cast Protect on everyone, then have a White Mage Pray and/or heal while two Dark Knights spray Darkness on the boss.  Samurai’s Sparkler works well, too.

Having trashed the poor thing, you now need to find five Repair Manuals and a bunch of Assembly Parts to get the Experiment up to Levels 5/5/5.  After learning this, you receive an Al Bhed Primer and the party returns to the Great Hall.  Three of the five Repair Manuals are here in Djose; the other two are elsewhere:

  • HOW TO REPAIR WITH SOUL - From a man sitting on the floor in Djose Temple’s living quarters.
  • REPAIRING FOR DUMMIES - From 3 monkeys behind sign-up tent at Djose. Hit X when they all jump together.
  • THE SPIRIT OF RECYCLING - From a guy in Djose Temple's upper Trials. The password is MARNELA.
  • EVERYMAN’S REPAIR MANUAL - From a machina on Mi’ihen Highroad, near Mushroom Rock entrance
  • THE ABC’S OF REPAIRS - Inside a chest within the Calm Lands Ruin Depths (secret dungeon).

Enter the n/w [Living Quarters] and talk to the man sitting inside to get Repair Manual #1.  The chest next to him contains 2x Remedy.  There’s a console in the n/e [Living Quarters] that lists how many Assembly Parts you’ve found so far.  Any parts you dig up in Bikanel will be applied to the Experiment automatically.

Leave the room and go upstairs to the [Trials].  Pick up a Mana Spring from the chest behind the elevator pad then ride up.  Speak with the man in back and when asked for a password, say “MARNELA” to get Repair Manual #2 (if you’re wondering, the password was hinted at during one of the CommSphere scenes). Grab a Soul Spring from the lower chest then go upstairs.  Poke around behind the machine to find a hidden Power Wrist chest. Enter the [Chamber of the Fayth] to find a Hyper Wrist chest as well.

Leave the temple afterwards.  Outside, you’ll find three monkeys behind the registration tent.  Stand in between them and press X when all three jump at once.  When successful, you receive Repair Manual #3. You’ll be returning later to fight the Experiment at its highest levels (see Djose - Pt. 2 for details).

Chapter 5 - Mi'ihen Highroad (pt. 1)

As soon as you arrive on Mi’ihen Highroad, you’re told that Rin has completed his investigation. Agree to accompany his assistant back to the Travel Agency. Go outside to initiate a scene, during which Rin summarizes the clues you gathered in Chapter 3 (via CommSpheres) and announces the culprit.

If you followed this guide, Rikku will be pinned as the guilty party, earning you the Ragnarok accessory and free chocobo rides from now on.  If anyone other than Rikku is named, you forfeit 100% completion.  Pinning Rikku, Chocobo Eater, or Calli earns you ‘Episode Complete’ - the other two suspects (Rin and Prophet) do not.  No matter how it turns out, you automatically board the airship when the scenes end.

Beam back down to Mi’ihen Highroad to complete your exploration.  Moving south to north, round up new chests (too many to name) and examine every machina you pass - one of them will give you Repair Manual #4 for the Djose Experiment - more often than not, it’s the machina standing near the Mushroom Rock gate. 

Two treasures require the use of a Chocobo.  Ask any hover agent to let you ride one and trot north past the [Newroad] bridge.  Look for a yellow feather on the left side of the path. Press X while standing on it. After a few seconds, you’ll be offered a choice.  Say, “Am I ever!” to have your chocobo leap up to an otherwise unreachable chest.  Collect 5x Phoenix Down then exit the screen. Now return to the exact same spot. Although the feather is gone, waiting there again will eventually bring up a choice.  Say “Am I ever!” and watch as your chocobo hops down to a second chest.  This time, it contains Paine’s special Victor Primoris Dressphere

There’s a secret dungeon you can open in Mi’ihen after visiting the Calm Lands.  See Chapter 5 - Mi’ihen Highroad - Pt. 2 below.

Chapter 5 - Calm Lands (pt. 1)

If you achieved PR Level 5 (400+ points) for one of the hover companies, you’ll see a scene showing the rival companies facing off in the field as soon as you enter the Calm Lands.  If you don’t see this scene, your chance at getting ‘Episode Complete’ is gone.  Assuming you earned enough points, Tobli enters and merges the two companies, forming a new one called ‘Calm Skies’. A new hover attraction opens: Gull Force (if you helped Open Air) or Feed the Monkey (if you helped Argent, Inc.).  When the scene ends, you earn ‘Episode Complete’ and automatically board the airship.

Beam back down to the Calm Lands.  If the PR companies merged, talk to folks on the left side of the Travel Agency to get a Calm Lands Free Pass allowing rides at no charge. All hover attendants have upgraded their inventory, too. Depending on the company you helped, you can now purchase the Disaster in Bloom GG (Open Air) or Flash of Steel GG (Argent) - listed as ??? in their prize menus - however, each costs a whopping 200,000 credits.

While at the Travel Agency, speak with the father looking to marry off his son.  Depending on points earned, you’ll see 0-5 women arrive. With at least 70 pts., the grateful father gives you a Speed Bracer.  Also, if you watched the CommSphere scene showing the father hiding a chest behind the Travel Agency, open it now to swipe 50,000 gil.  Afterwards, speak with the father.  If you’re honest about taking it, he’ll reward you with a Sword Lore accessory. 

Round up new chests in the field and walk down to the Gorge. Enter the [Chamber of the Fayth] and head north to Yojimbo’s room. Along the way, pick up a NulFrost Ring and NulTide Ring from two chests.  Step on the teleport pad in back and warp to the east and west alcoves to find chests with a Defense Bracer and Electrocutioner. Finally, warp to Yojimbo’s chamber to get Yuna’s special Aurora Rain Dressphere.

There is a second ‘Episode Complete’ you can earn in Calm Lands by unlocking a secret dungeon inside Clasko’s Ranch (see Calm Lands - Pt. 2 for details). For now, send any low-level Chocobo to Bikanel so that it opens the Central Expanse for digging - it’ll likely run away after unlocking the site. Also, raise a Normal or Timid Chocobo to Level 5 then send it to Mi’ihen Highroad.  After it returns safely, Clasko will tell you the Chocobo uncovered a new cave in Mi’ihen.  

Chapter 5 - Mi'ihen Highroad (pt. 2) / Fiend Colony

If your Level 5 Chocobo discovered a new cave in Mi’ihen, return there and you’ll see green fog next to the [Oldroad] Save Point.  Step through the fog to enter the [Fiend Colony] dungeon.

Chapter 5 - Mi’ihen Fiend Colony
While in the dungeon, there’s no mini-map to rely on.  Open the chest up ahead to bring up a tutorial.  Using bombs of various sizes (S/M/L), you must blow up walls to advance. Press Square to access your explosives and fight random enemies in the dungeon to restock your supply. Yuna's skirt often flutters when near a destroyable wall. You can also bomb sheer walls to uncover random treasure - look for black or white smudge marks. Know that if you leave the colony, all walls reset.

Start by blasting two walls in front of you to reveal a 4-way split. Go north and blast two more walls to uncover a Mega Phoenix chest.  Return to the 4-way split and head west now.  Blast through the wall at the end and proceed around the corner. Hug the left wall until you find a spot where Yuna’s skirt flutters.  Blast through to get a Black Tome.  Return to the main path and destroy the wall at the far right end. Move forward to a T- intersection. On the left, you’ll see five chests - all empty.  Use these chests as a marker to orient yourself. 

Examine the sheer wall in front of you, looking for a good spot to blast (slightly to the right). Pass through and approach the back wall. Veer east a few steps and blast the left wall to uncover a White Tome chest.  Return to the T-intersection and head all the way east now. Destroy the wall at the end. Go through the hole and follow the left path over to a particularly sturdy wall.  Blast it to reach an Elixir chest.  Now return to the empty chests and destroy the wall directly behind them. Pass through and find a spot on the left wall where Yuna’s skirt flutters. Create a hole to reveal a new path. Go around the corner to emerge in a long hallway. 

Within the long hallway, there are many spots to bomb. Hug the right wall until Yuna’s skirt flutters. Blast it and kill monsters that attack.  Move up a bit and blast the wall again to create a hole. Destroy a second wall in this offshoot to get an Elixir. Return to the long hallway and hug the left wall now - four spots cause Yuna’s skirt to flutter.  The first two lead to fiends.  The last two wall blasts uncover chests with a Mega Phoenix and Elixir.

Ignore the north end (leads to a fiend) - instead, hug the right wall again, looking for a spot midway where Yuna’s skirt flutters. Blast through and move to the n/w corner to destroy a particularly sturdy wall. Ahead of you are four stalls in a T-shaped opening. While standing at the intersection facing the stalls, blast the wall directly to your right to uncover a Sword Tome chest.

Now enter the far left stall and destroy the back wall to get a Turbo Ether.  The two middle stalls lead to fiends.  Enter the far right stall and blast the back wall to emerge in a new hallway with visible gaps in the floor.  Move forward to the T-intersection and head west. Hop across the first gap and destroy the wall on your immediate right to get an Arcane Tome. Jump across the second gap and blast through two more walls to find the boss.

BOSS:  King Vermini
Equip your party with something that guards against sleep and absorbs fire damage.  With those equipped, you've already won the battle.  The boss has a large amount of HP to whittle down. The lower his HP gets, the more he’ll use Holy and Flare spells. Equip a Black Ring (Gravity Eater) to take care of Demi.  You can also use Samurai’s Magicide to deplete its MP, causing the boss to rely on weak physical attacks.

Upon defeating the boss, you receive the Font of Power GG and automatically return to the Save Point outside.

As soon as you beam down, the mission “A Fallen Genius?” starts.  Apparently, Shinra’s gizmos are causing fiends to suck energy from the lightning towers.  Systematically go through the Plains, defeating each Rhyos that is feeding on a tower.  Each one leaves a chest behind; the contents are based on how well you did in the calibration mini-game.

After ridding nine towers of Rhyos (5 to the south and 4 to the north), Rikku will comment that the lightning isn’t stopping.  A new red marker appears on the mini-map.  Head s/w to the edge of the water and press X to reach the 10th tower. Agree to “Check it out” and face the boss that guards it.

BOSS:  Humbaba
Humbaba will open the battle by using Mighty Guard on itself.  Dispel it immediately. Equip Thunder-absorbing accessories or cast Shell on everyone. Use Dark Knights or Samurais, and assign one to act as support/healer. Pound the hell out of him and heal fully every other round.  Have a Thief steal all MP to eliminate Humbaba’s second Mighty Guard usage.  Note that he casts Meteor on your party when he dies, which does around 3000 damage per un-Shelled character, so make sure that someone can withstand the barrage before you finish him off.

After defeating Humbaba, you earn the Valiant Lustre GG…and ‘Mission Complete!’ The Al Bhed technician arrives and mentions that a hole has appeared in front of the tower.  Say, “Yup in the hole’ to enter it.  (Don’t worry about the chest - you’ll be coming back to get it.)

During your first trip through the [Cave], ignore the pink squares on your mini-map; your immediate goal is to find Cid.  A red arrow marks his location. Expect lots of random encounters with machina down here; if they become too annoying, equip a Charm Bangle.  Start by moving forward (east) to a T-section.  Go south and follow the long path to a jagged intersection.  Take a quick jog west then head south.  Move east when you can, and finally north to find Cid collapsed in the hallway.  While chatting with him, another boss attacks.

BOSS:  Machina Panzer
This boss comes equipped with three little drones.  Use Dark Knight's Darkness to wipe them out in one hit.  The big guy is a total pushover, despite having better stats than the previous boss. Slow it and use Warrior’s Break abilities to reduce the physical damage it causes. Have a White Mage apply Protect and on standby to heal. 

Completing the mission earns you an Al Bhed Primer and Episode Complete!  Cid automatically returns to the airship with you.  Back on board the Celsius, ride up to the [Deck] and try to talk to Cid as he heads for the elevator.  Go to the Bridge for a scene with Cid and Brother.  Finally, talk to Cid in the Engine Room to end this bit of business.

When ready, beam back down to Thunder Plains and return to the 10th tower, which is now glowing. Open the chest next to the Al Bhed technician - it will contain a Ribbon if you were fortunate enough to calibrate all ten towers in Chapter 2. Before re-entering the cave, equip a Charm Bangle - without one, the math puzzles you’re about to solve will be insanely hard. Buy one in the Calm Lands if you need to, it’s that important.  Also, grab a pen and paper.  They, too, will prove critical.  Once you’re all set, talk to the Al Bhed technician and tell him you would like to enter the cave.

Chapter 5 - Thunder Plains - New Cave
Upon entering the [New Cave], data appears on screen: Top left = Current wall # (no data yet) / Bottom right = The next wall # you need to find. Move forward and two chests will appear.  One contains a tutorial and the other, a clue.  When offered, go through the demo to get a feel for the puzzle. Here are a few tips:

  • You can press Square up to 3x to view information on screen - it’s better to write everything down
  • Yellow text on screen refers to Wall Numbers (Top = Current wall / Bottom = Next wall)
  • White text on screen relates to Key Numbers (Top = 2nd Key for current wall / Bottom = 1st Key for next wall)
  • When you examine a wall, you’ll be prompted to input a Wall Code (sum of Key Numbers 1 & 2)
  • After opening a wall, two more chests appear - pick one to get helpful information, or nothing
  • Key Numbers can be anything (amount of gil earned, the sum of two previous wall codes, a single digit, etc.)
  • Red marker on mini-map will always point to the next wall you need to open.
  • The order of walls never changes - if you examine a wall out of sequence, they reset, so be careful

When you touch a wall that asks for a Code input, do not add top and bottom white #s that are shown on screen - add the top # shown, and the PREVIOUS wall’s bottom # together. As soon as you touch the a wall, the bottom # changes, so write down everything, including the Codes that you input at each wall.

If you are wearing a Charm Bangle and get a clue like: “Battles fought since entering the cave” or “Amount of gil earned…”, the number you would enter is zero. As you move through the cave, explore offshoots for chests.  The chart below shows the order of walls and treasure to find - it does not offer solutions since each person’s game is different:

Wall 3 Key #1: bottom # at entrance
Key #2: (get from tutorial chest)
En route to Wall 10 get Diamond Gloves Wall 3 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 10 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 3
Key #2: top # at current wall
En route to Wall 11 get Hyper Wrist and Mystery Veil Wall 10 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 11 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 10
Key #2: top # at current wall
En route to Wall 5 get a Talisman Wall 11 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 5 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 11
Key #2: top # at current wall
  Wall 5 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 1 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 5
Key #2: top # at current wall
En route to Wall 8 get Nature’s Lore Wall 1 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 8 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 1
Key #2: top # at current wall
  Wall 8 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 12 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 8
Key #2: top # at current wall
  Wall 12 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 13 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 12
Key #2: top # at current wall
  Wall 13 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 9 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 13
Key #2: top # at current wall
  Wall 9 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 6 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 9
Key #2: top # at current wall
  Wall 6 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 7 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 6
Key #2: top # at current wall
En route to Wall 14 get Paine’s Corpus Invictus Dressphere Wall 7 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 14 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 7
Key #2: top # at current wall
  Wall 14 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 2 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 14
Key #2: top # at current wall
  Wall 2 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 15 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 2
Key #2: top # at current wall
En route to Wall 16 get Salvation Promised GG Wall 15 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 16 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 15
Key #2: top # at current wall
  Wall 16 Code = (sum of Keys)
Wall 4 Key #1: bottom # given at Wall 16
Key #2: top # at current wall
  Wall 4 Code = (sum of Keys)

Well done!  If you visit the cave a third time (and redo the entire wall exercise with fresh numbers), you’ll receive the Force of Nature accessory after unlocking the 16th wall.  It’s worth it.

When you arrive at the [Mountain Gate], watch a scene between Kimahri and Garik. Talk to Kimahri afterwards to continue the scene, during which Lian and Ayde return from their journey.  Afterwards, hike up the [Mountain Trail] - or use the teleport - to find Kimahri and Garik conversing near the top.  Once the scenes end, you get ‘Episode Complete’ along with the Sacred Beast GG.

Back on the airship, return to Mt. Gagazet. This time, the party arrives in front of the [Fayth Scar]. Climb up ledges, moving north, to find the Ronsos gathered in front of Kimahri’s new statue.  Talk to Lian and Ayde there to receive the Conflagration GG.  If you’re hunting Cactuars, you’ll find #8 (Erio) sitting on the [Prominence] cliff between the Mountain Trail and Fayth Scar.  Escort him back home to Bikanel to pick up your next clue.

Back in [Cactuar Nation], the situation is getting worse as Marnela tries to keep fiends at bay. Continue “The Cactuar Connection" mission by finding and escorting home the remaining Gatekeepers.  As a reminder, here are their locations:

1 - Lobivia Bikanel in Oasis, near the water
2 - Toumeya Besaid on the Beach, near the shore
3 - Lobeira Guadosalam in Hidden Passageway room, stuck in a chest
4 - Areq Calm Lands on Bridge above gorge, riding a chocobo with #5
5 - Arroja Calm Lands on Bridge above gorge, riding a chocobo with #4
6 - Islaya Thunder Plains In North plains, admiring a stone near lightning shelter
7 - Chiapa Kilika Woods on treetop cliff (climb eastern trunk tilted over water)
8 - Erio Mt. Gagazet on the Prominence cliff, between Mountain Trail and Fayth Scar
9 - Bartchella Kilika in Dona’s house

After delivering the 9th Gatekeeper to [Cactuar Nation], talk to the 10th one’s mother (green square on map).  Benzo translates that her little Frailea is nearby.  Speak with Marnela afterwards and pick: “We’ll look for him” to start a concurrent mission, “The Last Cactuar”.  With the sealed ‘cactuar’ door now open, enter the new area.

Inside [Cactuar Hollow], use the Save Point then proceed through the hall, fighting random enemies, until a scene takes over.  Defeat the Heavy Sallet that appears (you’ll face it multiple times in the hollow). While not technically a ‘boss’, this creature took a fair amount of time to defeat and so is mentioned here.

BOSS:  Heavy Sallet
The boss is a tank, with ridiculously high Defense, which actually increases the longer you fight it. You can try to ‘Eject’ it or, failing that, Slow it and Blind it.  Dark Knights and Samurais work well since their attacks ignore armor rating.  Black Mages are best, since the boss has no magic defense to speak of.  If Samurai has learned Fingersnap, use it to return Heavy Sallet’s defense to normal levels, which it will then start ramping up again.  Heal as necessary.

After beating the big helm, move forward to an intersection.  First, head north, hopping across ledges to reach a chest with Ether.  Return to the intersection and head east now, dropping down into a sandpit. During this timed event, you’re supposed to dash through the tunnel before the rising sand consumes you.  In truth, you’ll miss getting chests that are perched on several columns if you run straight through.  Allow yourself to be swallowed by the sand and you’ll be deposited back at the intersection where you can simply start over again.

Collect nine chests in the sand tunnel before dealing with the 60-second rule: Faerie Earrings, Mega Phoenix, Hi-Potion, Megalixir, Mute Shock, Twist Headband, Ether, Phoenix Down, and Beaded Brooch.  At the end of the tunnel, climb up the boulders on the right then jump across to the left stack.  From there, jump north to get over the wall before time expires.  When successful, proceed down the hall until you meet up with Frailea, the 10th Gatekeeper.  After getting Frailea to cooperate, you receive the Covenant of Growth GG. While escorting the little Cactuar home, a big boy arrives to stop you.

BOSS:  Jumbo Cactuar, Cactuar x2
In my opinion, Jumbo Cactuar is a breeze compared to those Heavy Sallets.  The boss will hasten its crew at the start, making direct hits miss. Use two Dark Knights to sweep them with Darkness and have a White Mage heal after the little ones use their 1,000 Needles. When the little guys fall, it's just a grind against the Jumbo Cactuar, who will use non-lethal Demi and eventually Flare to strike your party.  If you put Reflect on your party, the big fellow will eventually kill himself.

After defeating Jumbo Cactuar, you get ‘Mission Complete!’ and regain control back at the intersection, with the team fully healed.  Return to the Save Point at the entrance and use it before leaving the hollow. Outside, the ten Gatekeepers join forces to repel fiends descending on Cactuar Nation.  During the scene, Marnela asks for your help once again.  Agree to start a new mission “Showdown in the Sands” and you’ll be offered a choice to return to the airship.  Say, “Yes” so that you can prepare for the upcoming boss.

Return to Bikanel once the party has reached Level 45 or higher. As soon as you arrive in camp, the demon everyone has been so concerned about attacks. Start with two Dark Knights on a grid providing maximum strength and a White Mage equipped with Ribbon and the Ragnarok (if you have it). 

BOSS:  Angra Mainyu
This is, without question, the toughest boss you’ve faced so far. Your White Mage must keep the party healthy, protected, and alive while your Dark Knights repeatedly use Darkness (this is pretty much all they will be doing). The boss will constantly revive its other 2 parts and fully heal itself, so expect a long battle.  Its deadliest attacks are Perdition's Flame and Flare, which will likely kill the person hit. Tawrich (the left arm) uses Bloody Breath to inflict a host of ailments. Your Mage will be fine with Ribbon, while the Knights will be blinded and silenced. Ignore these ailments since Dark Knights will neither attack nor cast magic.  Just keep slamming the boss with Darkness and have that White Mage work overtime to maintain the party.  With the Ragnarok accessory equipped, your Mage will never run out of MP.

After the battle, the boss drops a Ribbon and you earn the Mercurial Strike GG along with Mission Complete! …and Episode Complete!

If you already visited Djose Temple and beat ‘The Experiment’ at Levels 1/1/1, feel free to do some digging in Bikanel - otherwise hold off on digging until you’ve gone to Djose. Assembly Parts for the Experiment are marked with yellow X’s and can be dug up in any expanse.  To open the [Central Expanse], send a low-level Chocobo to Bikanel (preferably one that you don’t need) - it will open the area before running away.

Unlike other excavation sites in Bikanel, you’ll be riding a Chocobo while digging in the [Central Expanse].  In addition to yellow X’s marking Assembly parts, dig on white X’s to get several Al Bhed Primers as well as the Desert Key that allows you to unlock the chest back in camp. Open it to receive the Horn of Plenty GG.

Finally, return to [Cactuar Nation] for a scene with Benzo (adds to %).  When it ends, speak with Marnela and watch as she re-seals the Hollow now that all little Gatekeepers are safely back with their mothers.

Chapter 5 - Calm Lands (pt. 2) / Ruin Depths

To get the second ‘Episode Complete’ for Calm Lands, you must find a special chocobo trapped underneath Clasko’s Ranch. To open the [Ruin Depths], three Bold Chocobos at every level must be dispatched to the Calm Lands.  In other words, send three Level 1 Bold Chocobos out.  Once they return safely, send three Level 2 Bold Chocobos out, etc. Repeat the process until three Level 5 Bold Chocobos return safely to the Ranch.  Once they do, Clasko informs you that a new dungeon has been discovered.  You can initiate this scene by sending any type chocobo out to an area - the important part is the LEVEL of chocobo you send out. For a step-by-step procedure, do the following:

01)  Capture at least 3 Bold Chocobos that can each be raised to Level 5 (often found in Kilika, Bikanel, or Thunder Plains).
02)  Assign three Lv.1 Bold Chocobos as your Runners. Fill in the other stalls with Reserves.
03)  Dispatch three Lv.1 Bold Runners to the Calm Lands.
04)  Fight 7 random battles, then return to the Ranch and SAVE before talking to Clasko. 
05)  Talk to Clasko and make sure that all three Runners made it back safely.  If any ran away, reload. 
06)  Raise three Lv.1 Bold Chocobos into Lv.2 Bold Chocobos.  Assign them as Runners.
07)  Dispatch three Lv.2 Bold Runners to the Calm Lands. Don't forget to restore their Heart! 
08)  Fight 7 random battles, then return to the Ranch and SAVE before talking to Clasko. 
09)  Talk to Clasko and make sure that all three Runners made it back safely.  If any ran away, reload. 
10)  Raise three Lv.2 Bold Chocobos into Lv.3 Bold Chocobos.  Assign them as Runners.
11)  Dispatch three Lv.3 Bold Runners to the Calm Lands. Don't forget to restore their Heart! 
12)  Fight 7 random battles, then return to the Ranch and SAVE before talking to Clasko. 
13)  Talk to Clasko and make sure that all three Runners made it back safely.  If any ran away, reload. 
14)  Raise three Lv.3 Bold Chocobos into Lv.4 Bold Chocobos.  Assign them as Runners.
15)  Dispatch three Lv.4 Bold Runners to the Calm Lands. Don't forget to restore their Heart! 
16)  Fight 7 random battles, then return to the Ranch and SAVE before talking to Clasko. 
17)  Talk to Clasko and make sure that all three Runners made it back safely.  If any ran away, reload. 
18)  Raise three Lv.4 Bold Chocobos into Lv.5 Bold Chocobos.  Assign them as Runners.
19)  Dispatch three Lv.5 Bold Chocobos to the Calm Lands. Don't forget to restore their Heart! 
20)  Fight 7 random battles, then return to the Ranch and SAVE before talking to Clasko. 
21)  Talk to Clasko and make sure that the Lv.5 Runners made it back safely.  If any ran away, reload. 
22)  Dispatch three Lv. 5 Bold Runners once more to the Calm Lands.  Fight 7 battles and return to the Ranch.
23)  When you enter, Clasko tells you that hidden ruins have been discovered underneath the Ranch.
24)  Drop down into the ‘Ruin Depths’ - entrance is marked with a green square in between the stalls

Chapter 5 - Ruin Depths
Inside the [Ruin Depths], you’ll find a complex series of paths that require a lot of climbing and jumping. There are many chests down here and many enemies to fight, including random encounters with the Ultima Weapon. If any give you trouble, equip a Charm Bracelet so that you can focus on getting through the maze-like paths.

Start by moving forward to a T-section. Head east to a chest containing 2x Turbo Ether.  Return to the main path afterwards.  Although it doesn’t look like it, the dungeon is actually circular, so no matter which offshoot you take, you’ll eventually return to the central hub. The trick is that some paths are one-way only…meaning if you drop down prematurely, you’ll have to go the long way around to get back to the center.

As for treasure, there are 15 chests total - key finds include a Cat’s Bell, Wizard Bracelet, Mythril Bangle, and AP Egg. The main reason you’re here, though, is to find a chocobo being held captive by a boss.  From the center path, keeping moving northward until the camera angle shifts to an overhead perspective. Continue north to what appears to be a blank wall.  Touching it reveals a familiar-looking foe.
BOSS:  Anything Eater
The boss has Auto-Reflect, so any magic cast on it will bounce back onto your girls.  It uses this feature to cast Flare as well.  Shell and Protect the party, then bash it with physical attacks. Or, cast Reflect on yourself to play the same game.  Equip Angel Earrings or use Dark Knight’s Deathproof to prevent KO from its ‘smack’ move.  Regain lost MP with Ethers when it uses Osmose. As usual, keep everyone’s health up and the chocobo-eating monster will fall in no time.

Upon winning, examine the wall where the boss was standing, causing it to rise.  Beyond is a T-shaped corridor that seems empty on both sides.  The reality is, there are four more walls ABOVE this corridor that need to rise - two on the left side of the ruins and two on the right side of the ruins.  Paths to these walls are lined by tall columns, each leading to a chest when risen. The four wall chests contain 2x Shining Gem, Pixie Dust, Rikku’s Special Machina Reactor Dressphere and “The ABCs of Repair” (Repair Manual #5) for Djose’s Experiment.

After raising all five walls, return to the middle corridor and head north again, back to the spot where you fought the boss. Touch the wall beyond to trigger a scene with Clasko. Rescuing the Awesome Chocobo earns you the Higher Power GG and a second ‘Episode Complete’ for Calm Lands.

If you revisit the Ranch, you’ll find the Awesome Chocobo in the top stall.  If you send it off to explore Spira, return later to find a chest full of goodies in its stall. You can also ask the Amazing Chocobo to support the others.  In so doing, there’s a small chance Runners will return with the Mounted Assault GG or Strength of One GG if if you send them out with less than full Heart.

Chapter 5 - Djose Temple (pt. 2)

Return to Djose Temple and give all Repair Manuals you found to the technician upstairs. Once you’ve dug up enough Assembly Parts in Bikanel, fight the Experiment again at its highest levels (5/5/5). 

BOSS:  Experiment (5/5/5)
At Level 5 the boss is plenty tough, with several harsh attacks that target your entire party. Immediately revive anyone hit with Lifeslicer.  Gun Mages can learn Annihilator - the only chance to do so, btw. Once the boss uses it, it resets its attack pattern. Toss items to cast Regen, Protect, and Haste on the party.  Offensively, use Samurai’s Sparkler and Dark Knight’s Darkness (or any other skill that ignores defense) to penetrate its shell.

Winning earns you Magical Dances Vol. II and a well-earned ‘Episode Complete’ for Djose.  The Magical Dances volume fills in an empty slot on Yuna’s Songstress Dresssphere.  The crew returns to the airship after.

When you arrive in Bevelle, head towards [New Yevon HQ} for a scene with Maroda. Afterwards, you receive the Scourgebane GG as well as ‘Episode Complete!’  Enter Headquarters and head east to find Pacce and the Kinderguardians standing next to a blue floor symbol. Use the nearby Save Point before standing on the symbol, which teleports you to the [Via Infinito] cloister.

Chapter 5 - Bevelle - Via Infinito
Starting on Cloister Level 0, move forward to trigger a scene with an unknown individual. When he leaves, pick up Crimson Sphere 6 and choose to watch it.  While inside the Via Infinito, DO NOT skip any scenes if you’re going for 100%. Charm Bangles are useless here - expect a long grind, with foes getting progressively harder. Your party should be at Level 80 or higher before venturing down all 100 floors.

Make use of the blue teleport pads on every level.  Stepping on them fully restores the party’s HP/MP and allows you to leave the Cloister - however, return journeys will send you back to Floor 0, 20, 40, 60, or 80, depending on where you exited from. For now, move forward, defeating both random enemies and visible ones, until you can drop down to the next level.  Some floors require you to solve a simple puzzle; others just have a hole you can jump into. Every trip through the same floor is unique, so you're pretty much on your own.  When you reach Floor 20, face the first of five bosses in the Via Infinito.
FLOOR 20 BOSS:  Aranea
The big spider has a predictable pattern, normally attacking 4 times, then spurting the party with Gooey End, which causes Stop. Equip something that prevents Stop or immediately Esuna the affliction. Begin the battle by casting Mighty Guard (or Protect and Shell). As usual, using Darkness from Dark Knights whilst healing with Curaga or Mega-Potions works well. Or have Berserkers use Eject (or Thieves use Steal Will) to try and end the battle quickly.

Upon defeating Aranea, you receive Crimson Sphere 8 - which, if you followed this guide, will be the last one!  With all ten Crimson Spheres in your possession, you can finally unlock the Den of Woe in Mushroom Rock.  Feel free to leave now - or keep grinding down 80 more floors to earn 100% completion. At the very least, try to defeat the boss on Floor 40 to receive a Cat Nip, Moon Bracer, Speed Bracer, Shining Bracer, and Recovery Bracer.  If you make it all the way down to Floor 100 and defeat the last boss, you’ll get Iron Dukes plus a well-earned trophy…and the second ‘Episode Complete!’ for Bevelle.

FLOOR 40 BOSS:  Black Elemental
The boss specializes in magic and boosts this stat while fighting. Offensively, it casts Flare, Ultima and Absorb (Drain/Osmose combo).  It can also Berserk your gals so be careful. There are a number of easy ways to defeat it. You can Eject the boss, drain its MP, Reflect its magic, or Bribe it with 65,000 gil to make it flee.  If Yuna is wearing Mascot, she can Moogle Beam it to death.

FLOOR 60 BOSS:  Concherer
This guy is nasty - with higher HP, Defense, and Magic Defense which it then doubles with Auto-Shell and Auto-Protect. Offensively, it uses Megaton Press (essentially KO), and Gunk (lose all MP and get poisoned).  For this battle, a physical offense is pretty much required, and set-up is pointless, since you'll be re-instilling it every time Megaton Press comes around. Expect an insanely long grind since you'll end up reviving someone every few turns. Once again, Dark Knight's Darkness pierces through its defense. Just have a White Mage dish out constant healing, keeping the Knights alive.

FLOOR 80 BOSS:  Chac
Among the many ugly things this boss dishes out is Heaven's Cataract, which hits everyone and lowers all stats. Stony Glare will instantly Petrify you regardless of any protection you’re wearing. It can also poison you and steal MP.  The boss is luckily vulnerable to Ejection via Berserkers or Thieves’ Steal Will. Alternately, try hastening three Thieves and chaining attacks, preventing the boss from pulling off anything.  Either way, keep an eye out for everyone’s health and pound away.

On Floor 100, you'll end up fighting two consecutive bosses. Before taking them on, check your equipment and garment grid set-up since you won’t be able to swap in between fights. One strategy is to start off with two Dark Knights and a White Mage, all using the Valiant Lustre GG.  Equip Break HP Limit accessories, plus Mythril Bangles, Crystal Bangles or Regal Crowns - and have a good stock of Soul Springs on hand.

FLOOR 100 BOSS: Paragon
The boss uses Big Bang and Genesis, both unblockable, that hit all for 10,000+ HP loss.  If it starts out with one of those, you’re screwed.  Paragon’s normal attacks will drain HP, cause Poison, Itchy, and Confusion. It will also counter any black or white magic used against it (except Holy/Dispel) with either Demi, Supernova or MP Absorb. When the battle begins, throw up Star Curtain and Mighty Guard to quickly get Protect, Shell, and Haste on everyone. After, start grinding away at its HP with Dark Knights’ Darkness supported by an Alchemist using Mega-Potions. When it has 75% remaining HP, you'll see Dispel. This will hit one of the girls; if you cast Reflect or toss a Star Curtain quickly enough, you'll see Dispel again, elemental that’ll bounce back on the boss. Eventually, the boss uses Final Impact, after which you should use Full Life and then a Megalixir. IT's basically a loop from there.

FLOOR 100 BOSS: Trema
One more boss to go, and one of the hardest in the game. Expect to see a host of spells (Demi, Flare, Ultima, and Meteor). If you survive that, just wait for the boss’s 9-hit combo attack, plus three others causing Poison, Stop, and MP drain. When the fight begins, cross Valiant Lustre GG gates to give your party a Defense +40 boost per gate. As you move back to Dark Knights and a support role, toss Soul Springs until Trema is out of MP. From there, you only have to contend with its physical attacks, which are less threatening. Keep in mind that Trema's stats are max’d so you still have a way to go. Darkness from your Dark Knights will pierce through. Just keep the healing up and you'll do fine during this lengthy battle.

When you arrive in Mushroom Rock, use the stone lift in the northern alcove to get a Mega-Potion and 2,500 gil.  Afterwards, approach the [Ravine] entrance for a scene with Elma and Lucil. What happens next depends on who you sided with - New Yevon or Youth League:

Chapter 5 - Mushroom Rock - New Yevon
Enter the [Ravine] and make your way up to the [Youth League HQ] elevator. Get 3x Turbo Ethers and two chests with Elixirs in the lower ravine, too.  Upon reaching the large elevator platform, open the nearby chest to get Rikku’s Special Machina Booster Dressphere. As a New Yevon supporter, that’s as far as you can go…

Chapter 5 - Mushroom Rock - Youth League
If you’re aligned with Youth League, speak with Yaibal and choose, “You bet!” to begin the Mission ”Youth League Tournament”. To win the tournament, fight seven battles in a row. Just follow Lucil and defeat opponents stationed on the upper part of the Ravine. After beating four waves of challengers, heal your party. The final three battles are consecutive, ending with Lucil herself.

BOSS:  Lucil
Be careful, you might get owned by her - Lucil is fast and tough. She relies heavily on items, including Lv3 gems that cannot be reflected. Her most dangerous move is Harbinger, which adds Doom on anyone not wearing Ribbon.  Doom KOs in 3 turns so revive when necessary. Offensively, Samurai’s Sparkler works well - really, anything ranged that’s faster than her.

After winning the tournament, you get ‘Mission Complete!’ plus a boatload of drops.  Watch a scene outside Headquarters, showing Lucil boosting morale in Nooj’s absence.  When it ends, you get ‘Episode Complete!’ and automatically re-board the Celsius.

Beam back down to Mushroom Rock and make your way up to the big elevator platform.  South of it, open a chest containing Rikku’s Special Machina Booster Dressphere.  Ride up to Headquarters and take the eastern path down to a chest with a Crystal Bangle.  Inside [Youth League HQ], the war room is now open.  Speak with with Lucil on the balcony to receive Nooj’s Sphere. Make sure to watch it on the airship - it’ll be listed as ‘Deathseeker’ in Shinra’s treasure sphere menu.

If you found all ten Crimson Spheres and viewed their reports aboard the airship, you can now unlock and explore Mushroom Rock’s Den of Woe. Return to the [Ravine] and drop down into the lower crevasse.  Explore offshoots for chests containing 3x Turbo Ethers and 2x Elixirs as you move north towards the Save Point. Once there, SAVE YOUR GAME before examining the sealed door beyond. Place all of the Crimson Spheres in their slots to open the [Den of Woe].

Chapter 5 - The Den of Woe
Head towards the red arrow on your mini-map, defeating shadow enemies along the way. When you reach the square-shaped room, make sure Yuna is fully prepared as she will have to fight the first two bosses alone. Move forward to trigger an unsettling cutscene, during which your allies lose control.

BOSS:  Rikku
Rikku is not to be taken lightly - she’s speedy and attacks often, using both bombs and physical strikes.  Warriors’ Breaks work against her so exploit that.  Slow her, or put her to sleep then nail her with magic spells while she’s dozing.  Heal after sustaining 3 or 4 hits to make sure you’re ready to take on the next boss.

BOSS:  Paine
Paine has higher HP but is far less agile so exploit that.  She’s vulnerable to Warrior’s Breaks oddly - plus you can put her to Sleep, Slow, Confuse, or Berserk her - so many choices. Offensively, cast Protect before doing anything. Like the previous battle, heal after sustaining a few hits to make sure you’re ready for the next boss.

After coming to their senses, Rikku and Paine join Yuna in fighting three consecutive bosses.

BOSS:  Baralai
Baralia is noticeably tougher than when you faced him in Chapter 2. At the start, use three Thieves to prevent Stop and have your girls steal all of his MP so that he cannot use Regen or Mighty Guard on himself.  After that, cast Protect on everyone to reduce damage from his Drill Shot (major gravity-based damage). Have a White Mage heal and cast Dispel should he manage to pull off Mighty Guard.  As usual, Dark Knight’s Darkness proves effective offensively.

BOSS:  Gippal
Gippal pounds you physically and causes various status maladies. Protect and Shell everyone to reduce damage. Bring in three Dark Knights to pound away at him. If he casts Silence, they will not be affected by it.  Heal according to the damage you’re sustaining and have a White Mage boost overall stats before facing the last boss.

BOSS:  Nooj
Nooj uses a fixed attack pattern - lots of shots followed by Greedy Aura, which causes damage based on the girls’ HP/MP. White Mage is a must during this fight, casting Protect, Shell, Regen, and healing throughout.  Hasten the party as well.  The boss is susceptible to Breaks, so hit him with those. Nooj will start using Lightfall when his HP falls below 75% and it will likely kill anyone hit by it. Revive fallen comrades immediately.  Bring in heavy hitters (Samurais and Dark Knights) to finish him off.

Winning the long battle earns you a bunch of nice drops including Magical Dances Vol. I (for Songstress) and the Supreme Light GG for another ‘Episode Complete!’

After earning ‘Episode Complete’ in all 15 areas (excluding bonus dungeons) AND if you shook Maechen’s hand in Chapter 1, you’ll see a scene on the Bridge with the girls receiving the coveted Mascot Dressphere.  Note that each girl needs to learn Warrior’s SOS Protect ability to have the Ribbon slot appear on Mascot.

Either way, take care of ALL remaining business in the world before going to the Farplane, as you will have few opportunities to leave once you get there.  When ready, talk to Brother and choose an entrance (I selected “Bevelle Underground” since it seemed most fitting to the storyline - similar layouts all lead to the same place). One chest can be found in each area:

  • BESAID TEMPLE - Path has floating stones that may send you back a bit (2x Mega Potion chest)
  • KILIKA TEMPLE - Avoid Flame Geysers on path - repeated contact sends you back a bit (Mana Tonic chest)
  • DJOSE TEMPLE - Solve ‘Stepping Stones’ puzzle to extend the path (2x Turbo Ether chest)
  • BEVELLE UNDERGROUND - Straightforward grind down spiral path (Elixir chest)
  • CALM LANDS GORGE - Use blue teleports and avoid flames on path (Shining Gem chest)

Chapter 5 - Road to the Farplane

Move down the twisted path, fighting harsh random enemies, as you head towards the large circular platform.  Before jumping onto it, equip ice protection or anything that adds fire to your physical attacks.

BOSS:  Dark Shiva
Shiva absorbs ice and is weak to fire. She’s faster than other Aeons, so some of your physical attacks may miss. Her Heavenly Strike attack also inflicts Stop, so equip everyone with a Ribbon or Kinesis Badge to prevent it. Offensively, inflict Warrior’s Breaks while Dark Knights, Samurais, or Berserkers dish out the heavy stuff. Have one girl switch between White Mage and attacker, providing healing and Shell support when needed.

After defeating Dark Shiva, a Save Point will appear. Use it before continuing your descent.  When you reach the next big platform, prepare the girls well, for the upcoming trio is a doozy.

BOSS:  The Dark Magus Sisters
Focus all of your attacks one one sister (Mindy, ideally, since she attacks most) to prevent the trio from using their Delta Overdrive.  If Thief learned Spare Change, toss about 300,000 gil on Mindy for an instant KO.  Once you have taken her out, the fight becomes much easier. Deal with with Cindy next, saving Sandy for last.  None of them can avoid Dark Knight’s Darkness so exploit it.  Mostly, it’s their speed and evasion that’ll have you turning grey. If you have trouble landing hits, toss gems.  They won’t do huge elemental damage but they will connect 100% of the time.

Once you finish off the sisters, the platform you were fighting on crumbles. Hop back up to SAVE YOUR GAME. Continue deeper, and equip Ribbon(s) before stepping on the last big circular platform.

BOSS:  Dark Anima
Anima is easier than the Magus Sisters in one regard - it's slower.  Shaving down its 36,000 HP is the real issue. Use Dark Knights, Samurais, or Mascots and continually attack.  Toss X-Potions or Mega-Potions to heal. Anima’s Pain causes status ailments on the entire party, so use Remedies on those without Ribbon protection. Fully heal before Anima uses Oblivion - it’s magic-based, so Shell will help augment the damage it causes to the entire party.

Defeating Dark Anima earns you the Immortal Soul GG.  Watch a scene with Leblanc’s crew in the [Farplane Abyss]. When it ends, DO NOT USE THE PORTAL on the left side of the flower field.  Use the Save Point on the right to return to the airship. This is your only chance get the Megiddo GG (allows you to cast Flare and Ultima), which adds % completion.  Skip the next part if you just want to end the game…

Chapter 5 - Return to the Celsius / Other Roads to the Farplane

Back on the Celsius, speak with Shinra for a scene then go anywhere else on the ship (rest or shop). When you return to the Bridge, you’ll find that Brother and Buddy are missing. Ride up to the Deck and eavesdrop on their conversation.  When the scene ends, you get an Al Bhed Primer if you’re still missing any. Enter the Cabin for a scene with Cid.  Pick either response when given a choice.  Now go to the Bridge to see that Rikku is missing.  Speak with her on the upper Deck for a final scene.  If you have trouble viewing any of the scenes aboard Celsius, your % is too low.

To obtain the Megiddo GG, you must reach the Farplane Abyss portal (where Leblanc’s crew is waiting) using ALL FIVE routes:  Besaid, Kilika, Djose, Bevelle, and Calm Lands.  The Djose route involves a puzzle; the others are straight-forward.  So…repeat what you just did in Besaid four more times knowing that you will not have to face any more bosses.

While traveling the [Road to the Farplane] via Djose Temple, you’ll notice the path abruptly stops.  To extend it, hop onto the west-most stone to ride over to a ledge.  Examine 3 stones in front of you to bring up a puzzle: Push the left stone to Spot 3 / Push the right stone to Spot 1 / Push the middle stone to Spot 2.  Hop back onto the main path and head east, jumping across new stones that allow you to descend.

After descending five times to the purple platform where you fought Dark Anima, a scene will unfold showing Yuna obtaining the Megiddo GG.

Chapter 5 - Farplane Abyss

When you return to the [Farplane Abyss] flower field, talk to Leblanc (she sells items if you need any). Use the Save Point, then step on the orange mist and choose “Yes” to continue onward.  Note that you can get through the Heart of the Farplane in one of two ways. One is mentally challenging (“Brains”) and the other is physically challenging (“Brawn”) - both methods are described below.  Pick whichever one suits your style.

Chapter 5 - Heart of the Farplane (Brains method)

When you emerge from the portal, you'll be facing a keyboard with a blue floor glyph on the left.  Step on the glyph to hear 3 notes played (So/Mi*/Re*).  Play these notes in the correct order on the keyboard to remove the electric barrier on the right.  Another keyboard is to the n/e, past a Megalixir chest. 

For this one, you must find three glyph pads with notes while avoiding electric currents that zap you when you get near them. Wait for the electricity to pause then dash through.  The first pad is on the n/w path (2 notes), the second is on the lower right path (1 note), and the third pad (1 note) is further south.  After hearing all the notes, walk over to the n/e keyboard.  Play them in the correct order (Do*/Ti/La/So) to deactivate Barrier #2.

For the third keyboard, step on three more glyphs spread out on n/w, lower east, and upper east paths. Or, just head north to find the third keyboard near a chest with 3x Turbo Ether. Play this set of notes (Fa/Mi/Fa/So/Do) to deactivate Barrier #3.  Hop onto the main path and move forward until you find Gippal. During the scene, you receive Paine’s Sphere

When the scene ends, a mini-game called “Scaling the Heights” starts - here, you must recreate the entire melody you just learned by stepping on a bunch of floating stones in the correct order. Press X to hear the melody and watch as different stones light up.  Press Square to back out of the tutorial screen and use the nearby Save Point.  Notice two taller stones flanking the Save Point - one to the LEFT and one to the RIGHT.  Both will be used to solve the musical puzzle.  Green squares on your map indicate which stones play notes when stepped on.

Starting at the Save Point, climb onto the left stone to rise up a bit.  When it stops, hop to the right - three notes are played.  Hop right again, to rise up a bit more.  Jump north twice to hear two more notes.  Now hop back down to the SAVE POINT.  Once there, climb onto the right stone to rise up a bit. Jump onto northern stone to ride over to a bigger one - this one plays a note.

Return to the SAVE POINT and climb onto left stone again. When it stops, jump left twice and ride up.  When this stone stops, jump to the right to hear one note.  Jump left and the stone you previously used will float even higher.  Jump over to a chest with 2x Mega Phoenix, then jump up to hear two more notes.  Use the lower stone to float down. Jump south then north to immediately float back up. When the stone stops, jump left twice to hear one note. 

Drop down to the SAVE POINT and use the stone on the right to ride up once again. When it stops, jump onto the southern stone to reach another, which plays two notes.  Finally, head left onto a circular platform that plays all notes in the order stepped on.  If you messed up the order, a very powerful foe arrives (refer to Azi Dahaka boss section, below).  If the melody is played correctly, the final barrier deactivates, allowing access to Vegnagun. 

Chapter 5 - Heart of the Farplane (Brawn Method)

After emerging from the portal, let the scene finish then make your way north, and north only - wait for electric security beacons to detract then dash through. When you try to pass through the large, rotating barriers, a formidable boss stops you. You must beat Azi Dahaka THREE TIMES to access Vegnagun.

BOSS: Azi Dahaka
Azi will make you cry for weeks if you don’t come prepared; fortunately, there are some tricks you can use to beat him. If you have a lot of gil, Spare Change him to death with Samurai - or Eject him - making it one of the quickest victories ever.  If neither method is at your disposal (or both fail), you might want to invest in music lessons… Immediately apply Protect, then heal the party anytime HP dips below 50%.  If you have Light Curtains or Chocobo Wings, use them. Have two girls blast him with Dark knight’s Black Sky, Samurai’s Sparkler, or Warrior’s Excalibur. Revive anyone KO’d with Bated Breath. If Azi recovers HP faster than you can damage it, I suggest giving up, as you may be too weak to kill it.  Unlike most boss battles, you can Flee this one if all else fails.

After the first battle, continue north for your second encounter with the boss. Use whatever strategy worked the first time to defeat Azi. Take advantage of the nearby Save Point, then jump onto the floating stone to your right.  When it stops, jump on the *lower* of two stones on your left.  When this one stops, head left twice. Walk to the middle of the circular platform to engage boss Azi a third time.  Use whatever worked before.  If you successfully beat the boss three times, the final barrier de-activates and access to Vegnagun is granted.

Chapter 5 -Vegnagun

Whichever method you chose (brains or brawn), you arrive at the exact same spot.  Move forward to trigger a scene.  When it ends, approach the massive machine.  Lots of jumping again, but the path is linear.  On top, watch a lengthy cutscene and when it ends, head back down to the Save Point (jump right twice to reach it). 

If you managed to fight the Oversoul of every enemy in the game, RETURN TO THE AIRSHIP ONE LAST TIME to get The End GG, which is by far the best.  This is it… so spend time preparing for the big showdown with Vegnagun before climbing back up.

BOSS: Vegnagun's Tail
The tail starts things off with a powerful sweep that hits all characters for about 1000 HP. Heal up then go to town with physical attacks. The tail’s laser focuses on one character, and doesn't deal a lot of damage.  Since this is the first part of the boss, it is the easiest to defeat. You should be able to toast it quickly.

After destroying the Tail, climb higher to take on the Arm…

BOSS: Vegnagun's Arm
The Arm includes several orbs that can only be hit with ranged attacks or magic. Thing is, you don't need to kill those off to beat the Arm, so ignore them. Use three Dark Knights and you won't have any trouble here. The orbs periodically cast spells on you (or the arm), but none of their actions should hinder your progress.

After defeating the Arm, go back and use the Save Point ONE LAST TIME before the final three (consecutive) battles.  Equip against Poison and Petrifaction.  When you’re ready to finish the game, jump up the discs to find your allies struggling with the Core. Step in and close the deal…

BOSS: Vegnagun's Core
The boss’ arms cast support magic, so use Dark Knight (or Samurai) to clean their clocks in one or two hits. A couple swipes of Dark Knight’s Darkness will take care of both bulwarks, and deal hefty damage to the Core as well. Once the bulwarks are gone, hit the chest with everything you’ve got. The arms will regenerate eventually; just repeat the same technique.

After dealing with the Core, the party’s HP/MP is fully restored…and the 4th battle begins.

BOSS: Vegnagun's Head
For this boss, you have to eliminate the Redoubts before you can target the Head. Use Dark Knight’s Darkness to destroy them quickly.  Eliminate the tusks next to prevent Vegnagun’s most powerful attacks.  One they’re gone, blast the Head until the Redoubts regenerate - kill them off again with Dark Knights, and repeat the process.  Know that if you fail to kill the Head within 80 turns, you’ll automatically see the BAD ENDING scene and get ‘Game Over’ regardless of % completion. 

After the battle, Yuna’s attempts at persuasion fail.  By now, her fate is already decided…

Shuyin uses a fixed attack pattern - one physical hit followed by a familiar ‘overdrive’ move. Heal after each small strike, and attack each time the boss uses one of the four overdrives.  For a bit of poetic justice, end with Yuna as Songstress.

Chapter 5 Complete!  Hang onto your controller, though…there's still more to do.  As soon as you see Yuna walking in the field of flowers, give your X button the mash of a lifetime.  If all requirements for ‘perfect ending’ were met, the Fayth will ask a question. Choose “Yes!” to view a bonus scene in Besaid after credits roll.  Or choose “It's better this way” for a bonus scene in Zanarkand after credits roll. 

Either way, watch the wrap-up sequence. Let the end credits go to the very end to see one final scene. Whether it’s the ‘perfect’ ending or one that is less so, CONGRATULATIONS on finishing the game!  Press X on ‘The End’ screen to bring up stats showing your current game's %, number of times you've beaten the game, and levels your gals finished at.  Press X again to advance to the [New Game-Plus] data creation screen.  Choose “Yes” to create a ‘New Game+’ save file.  

New Game+ Features

When you replay FFX-2, load your [New Game+] file to start at Level 1 retaining all Gil, Accessories, Garment Grids (except First Steps), and Dresspheres (including abilities learned) that you acquired during earlier playthroughs. O’aka begins with a 1000 gil debt if you payed off his full debt the first time.  All regular items remain in your inventory, except Gysahl Greens.  Al Bhed Primers are the only key items retained.  You also carry over completion % from the last time you played - allowing for better (or different) choices this time around.

Things that DO NOT carry over include chocobos, crimson spheres, repair manuals, PR points, mini-game credits, coins, tower calibrations, etc. - pretty much any item or task related to a quest needs to be redone.




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