Leaving from Albrook

When you enter Albrook, you'll see that the Docks are finally accessible. They are your destination. Don't miss the Warp Stone hidden in one of the crates near the entrance. When you're ready, speak to General Leo. He'll advise you to rest. Shadow is about to join the party, so you may want to invest in a Blossom if you don't have one yet. To get this show on the road, stay at the inn (you're expected, so it's free). In the morning, return to the Docks and set sail for Thamasa. After some night time cutscenes, Shadow will officially join and you'll arrive on the south shore of Crescent Island. The first thing you should do is check Shadow's equipment and assign him an Esper, as he does not yet know any Spells.

Crescent Island

The local plains are filled with Baskervors. These strange-looking Monsters have no particular weaknesses, but aren't too tough to defeat with only 750 HP. Their attacks are fairly strong, and if they're the only Monster on the battlefield, they may counter attack with Sneeze. This knocks the attacker out of combat entirely, but it's more annoying than anything else. Baskervors are sometimes accompanied by Cephalers, octopus creatures that can use Tentacle for significant damage. They're easy to take out with only 420 HP and a weakness to Thunder, though their basic defensive capabilities are fairly high against both physical and magic damage.

Baskervors don't appear in the forests, possibly because they're afraid of the Chimeras that do. Everything they do is dangerous, from their powerful attacks and Frisky specials to their propensity to use Aqua Rake. By themselves, they use different tactics, including Blizzard, Fire Ball, and Cyclonic. This last one is the most dangerous, so try to cut through their 2,237 HP before they get around to it. They have no weaknesses, but don't resist any Elements either. If you're brave, you can try to steal a Hyper Wrist from one.


Thamasa is located northeast of the freighter's landing point. The Inn costs 1,500 GP (hold off on staying there for the moment, but grab the Fenix Down in the top barrel to the right of the building). All the other shops are open and offer some powerful new Weapons and Armor. The Item Shop has a standard array of goods, and you can find an Eyedrop in the middle barrel just right of it. It's a similar situation in the Relic Shop, right down to the hidden item (a Soft) in the bottom barrel next to the shop. DragoonBoots are for sale here for the first time, and this is the first time Sprint Shoes have been sold in a new shop in quite a while.

The Weapon Shop sells four different types of rods, none of which the current party can use. Your next two party members will be able to, however. You can also pick up the Stout Spear or Darts, though no one in the current party can use them. They'll both be nice upgrades when the appropriate Characters rejoin, though. It's a similar situation at the Armor Shop, which sells Tiger Masks for characters you left back in Vector. This is also the first shop that sells Gold Armor, albeit for 10,000 GP. If you like the idea of a Mag.Pwr bonus for Terra, the Mystery Veil is a fantastic upgrade over the Tiara. Another nice addition is the Gaia Gear, which absorbs Earth and offers the best Mag.Def of any body Armor you've seen so far. It's also pretty affordable at 6,000 GP.

Don't miss the Echo Screen found in the top barrel near the Elder's House in the northern part of town.

Strago and Relm

You'll quickly get the impression that the townsfolk here are hiding something. You can catch a few villagers in the act of using magic if you explore thoroughly. A mother almost casts Cure on her daughter right in front of you if you walk past Strago's House. A different child is practicing Fire behind the large blocked-off house to the east.

You are directed toward an old man in the northeast part of town. There's a Green Cherry in a barrel to the right of his house. When you speak to this old man, you get to name him (Strago) and his granddaughter Relm. She lets slip that they can use magic, but everyone just lets that slide. Still, the party is now suspicious and vows to investigate. After leaving Strago's House, immediately re-enter it and go upstairs to find a carefully hidden Relic. Walk around the small table on the left side, and search the wall to its left for a Memento Ring.

To advance the plot, stay at the Inn, where the innkeeper has dropped the price from 1,500 GP to 1 GP because you spoke to Strago. Be prepared when you rest, as you'll be roused from bed and have to deal with a short dungeon. You may want to remove Shadow's equipment, or at least his Esper, because he's about to leave the party again. Terra and Locke will follow Strago outside where the previously blocked-off building is now a roaring inferno. You get confirmation that the people of Thamasa truly can use Magic, though it's not enough to rescue Relm, who is trapped in the Burning House. Instead, Strago will join the party and the trio enters the fire.

The Burning House

Though it is technically true that Strago "knows magic," he has no normal Spells in his repertoire at first, so assign him an Esper immediately. He does know three Lores: Aqua Rake, Revenge, and Stone. Aqua Rake is essentially a Water/Wind-Elemental tier-2 attack Spell, though it can't be used against single targets. It will be very useful in the coming dungeon.

With the exception of the boss, every Encounter in this dungeon is with 3–6 Balloons. These are similar to Bombs in appearance, but act quite a bit differently. They may use Exploder on any third round, even if they have not been attacked. They won't use it as a normal counter, but if you hit them with a Fire attack (which they absorb), they can counter with either Exploder or their moderately powerful Flare Up special. Strago can learn Exploder from them, though he probably doesn't want to use it any time soon. Balloons are vulnerable to Ice and Water, and either Aqua Rake or Ice 2 should make short work of them. They are highly vulnerable to physical damage, though at 555 HP each it might not be practical to quickly take down groups of six with physical attacks.

None of the Balloon Encounters is actually random. If you touch any of the moving flames, you'll be attacked by three or (rarely) six Balloons. You're not on a timer, but you do have a limited amount of MP. Taking out the smaller Balloon groups efficiently is the key to getting through this dungeon. Using Spells on the larger groups shouldn't tax you too much. The first few rooms are straightforward enough, but eventually things get a bit more complicated.

The Second Hallway has two doors at the north end. The one on the left is a trap, and opening it will spawn four Balloons in a pincer formation. This will happen each time you open the door, so be sure to use the right door instead. The right door in the Third Hallway leads to a Fire Rod (which Strago should not equip), while the left door continues on to the Fourth Hallway. Once again the right door leads to treasure, in this case an Ice Rod that Strago should be able to one-shot Balloons with (from the front row, at least). The left door leads to a small Landing followed by a Large Room containing Relm and the boss, FlameEater.


As you might expect, FlameEater attacks mainly with Fire Abilities, specifically Fire and Fire Ball. It immediately summons four Balloons with Bomblet, and will call forth four more groups (of two, three, four, and two again) on a regular timer before summoning a Grenade. FlameEater will repeat the cycle at that point, but the battle is unlikely to go that long. You can and should take out the Balloons promptly with Ice 2, Aqua Rake, or similar Abilities. Ice 2 is somewhat preferable because FlameEater is vulnerable to Ice but not Water or Wind. Aqua Rake will still do some damage, though FlameEater is immune to every other element.

The main danger in this battle comes from FlameEater's counterattacks. It may counter any given attack with Fire 2, and will cast both Safe and Rflect on itself after it's been attacked six times. Once so protected, it will reflect Fire 2 and Fire 3 off of itself and onto the party. The only good news is that these Spells can't hit the whole party, but Fire 3 has a good chance of taking a weakened Character out. The best way to avoid all this is to dish out 8,400 HP worth of damage within six attacks, including the ones used to take out FlameEater's summoned minions. With Ice 2 and Morph or enough bonuses to Mag.Pwr, this is entirely possible. Otherwise, rely on physical attacks and the non-Reflectable Aqua Rake Lore to finish the job.

There is an entirely different strategy possible here. FlameEater has the "Wound at 0 MP" property, which means if it runs out of MP, you win. Repeated castings of Rasp can achieve this, though you face the same counterattacks as a traditional strategy.

Once the battle is won, the party will reform at Strago's House. Shadow will leave, and the trio have a new destination: the Western Mountains. Before leaving, make sure to update Strago's equipment. Gaia Gear will shore up his defenses nicely.