Part 131: Characters - Rydia
Name: Rydia of Mist
Rydia was once a little girl who lived in the Village of Mist with her mother. One day, two knights from Baron slayed her mother's summon and burned down her village before attempting to abduct her. In desperation, she summons a creature, causes a massive earthquake, and collapses. She is saved by one of these knights, who protects her from other Baron soldiers. She soon learns to trust this knight, Cecil.
After the ship the party was on was attacked by Leviathan, the creature swallows Rydia and takes her to the Feymarch, where the summons live. There, she hones her Black Magic and learns to summon more creatures. She ages rapidly while in the Feymarch due to the way time flows there, and by the time she returns to the party to save them against Golbez, she had become a woman in the short time she was gone. She stays in the party for the rest of their journey, up to and including the final assault on the moon and the fight against Zemus.
Now, a catastrophe has hit the Feymarch, petrifying all the summon monsters. Rydia lost all her summons, and now she has to fight to protect the Underworld crystals and to regain her summoned monsters.
To be added as the game progresses. If you're really curious, she ends up with the same ones as FF4. No new summons, no removed summons.
Equipment: Whips, Rods, Daggers, Bows
Best Stats: Intellect, Spirit
Rydia's mostly about magic offense. While you can go out of her way to make her a decent physical attacker, it's not recommended due to her low Strength and Stamina. Her Intellect is among the highest in the game, and she can use that to deliver serious damage in her magic.
Rydia can use rods, which boost her Intellect and can cast spells of their own, or use Whips, which can paralyze enemies and are fully effective from the back row. However, I'd suggest the former, as Osmose makes MP issues irrelevant, and Rydia will probably do more damage even with a L1 spell like Fire than with a Whip attack.
She has access to all Black Magic, including the three elemental spells, status spells like Sleep and Stop, and other useful attack spells like Bio, Flare, and Meteor. Her summons give Rydia more variety, from healing with her surprisingly good Spirit stat, to draining HP, to a variety of elemental damage spells.
Essentially, it'd be foolish not to focus on Rydia as a magical attacker.