The Let's Play Archive

Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift

by Solumin

Part 7: There's no Mist without Dragons

Update 7: There's no Mist without Dragons

In This Update:
- Hunt for the Mutated Thunder Dragon
- The Yoda of Ivalice
- Assassins! Dragoons! Elementalists!


Last time, Samuel resolved to follow Cid's information and find the legendary wizard Lezaford. We then did a bunch of sidequests.

Today we're going to actually explore the Aldanna Range, where Lezaford is rumored to be.


But first a side quest.

A bunch of quests expired and now appear on the Other tab. Some will be back in a month (20 days), others in about a year.

This is another "look for the right glowy spot" quest. It'll get us some easy AP.

Pretty minor, as far as laws go. We aren't going to do much fighting, anyway.

This fight has a bunch of monsters that Samuel could learn abilities from.
Lamias (the two snake ladies) have Night, which puts everyone on the field to sleep.
Dreamhares teach War Cry, which boosts Attack.
Faeries teach a couple really strong healing spells.

Unfortunately, only the red Lamia actually knows an ability we can learn, and we can't control Lamias yet. There's no guarantee it'll use it.

This mission should be really straightforward, if this faery doesn't get in the way. Mischief means Meteorite, and it also knows Slow.

My plan is to take out that faery, then find the correct mushroom. Fortunately, we can try as many mushrooms as we like.

And immediately the faery proves my point.

OK, first obstacle down.

Ooh, nice. We can't buy these, remember.

Talf gets to try the first mushroom.

It was worth a shot.

Samuel's turn.
There's no negative effect from trying the poisonous mushrooms. No damage, no poison condition, no nothing.

The dreamhare puts Imino to sleep, but the lamia immediately wakes him up with Twister. Henri also took a hit for 82 damage here. Lamia are one of the stronger enemies in this part of the game.

Anyway, the battle continues on like that for a bit. Imino finally finds the right mushroom.

A pretty good haul.

And Nyno finally knows enough abilities to become a Hunter! This is the advanced Archer job, and it can be pretty powerful.


We continue from Baptiste Hill to the Aldanna Range, in pursuit of an angry, mutated dragon.

: Not fog... Mist. Pretty strong, too. Ach... Makes my stomach roil.

: Why do I get the feeling that when you say "Mist", you aren't talking about "mist".

: What, don't tell me you haven't heard of - *sigh* Mist is the root of all magick. It suffuses every person, creature, and object in the world. Even the sky above us. Normally it is too thin to be seen with the naked eye, but in some places...

: You feeling sick or something?

: I-I'm surprised you aren't! I'm not particularly sensitive to Mist, mind you, but when it's as thick as this...

: Shh! Something's up there!

From left to right: a Wolf, a Yellow Jelly, Gilmunto the Nidhogg, a Thunder Drake and another Wolf.

: What's up with those monsters? They look totally different from the ones we've seen so far.

: It's the Mist. At these concentrations, it affects creatures in unpredictable ways.

: Like making them incredibly tough and nasty looking?

: If you want to go back, the path's right over there.

: Wh-Who said anything about running away!? I admit, I'd rather have Cid here with us, though. Guess there's nothing to do but fight!

Again, we just have to kill Gilmunto. It's possible to reach this quest at around level 7, and if so you'll want to focus Gilmunto in order to win quickly. We're at the same level as the monsters, so we'll be able to take them all down.

This law by itself is not that bad. However, the drake and the jelly absorb thunder, and Gilmunto resists fire, ice and thunder. Black Mages are going to have a tough time here.

Nothing to do but start the battle, I guess.

Here's our starting position. The Wolves have already moved in.

Gilmunto is pretty slow. He spends the first few turns buffing the monsters with Dragon Force, which boosts Attack and Magick. This lets us focus on the other monsters for a bit.
Blue Mages can learn Dragon Force, but Gilmunto will never cast it on Samuel. We need a Beastmaster with the right skill, which we don't have.

Here's another annoyance: Absorb Damage. The monster is healed for 10% of every attack dealt to it. It's basically a soft 10% damage resistance.

Remember a few updates ago when this did 40+ damage? Wolves are much less scary when we're at the same level as them.

As usual, Lenolia lays down some crowd control. Stopping the thunder drake early is very useful, because it and the yellow jelly will try to heal each other.

Like so. The AI loves to heal itself while damaging you.

Unlike healing spells like Cure, Thunder can still miss, fortunately.

Talf is on backup healing duty. His Curas would heal for 60 - 70 HP, but he only knows Cure.

Here's how things look after a couple rounds. Gilmunto is moving in, the thunder drake is still asleep, and we're stuck in a big furball with the other enemies.

We're starting to build up some momentum. Even better, Gilmunto wasted his last turn by buffing this wolf.

Gilmunto finally catches up to us.

Adelle and Henri are working on Gilmunto, and the rest of the clan is focusing on the jelly and wolf on the left.

The jelly heals himself, attacking Talf and Lenolia in the process. It barely scratches Talf though.

The thunder drake is about to wake up, so this lucky critical is very welcome!

The drake wakes up at this point and immediately jumps into the fray.
Shockbolt inflicts Confuse (targets takes random actions) and Addle (target forgets all abilities).

Thankfully, it misses completely.

Gilmunto retreated and the last wolf is down, leaving us to focus on the drake for a bit.

We wear the drake down quite a bit, but Gilmunto steps in to heal it.

60 HP is one or two turns' worth of damage. Imino and Henri takes a solid 50+ damage themselves.

But a few turns later, the drake falls anyway.

That just leaves Gilmunto, who hits like a truck.
Don't worry, Lenolia gets away, and Adelle moves forward to stop Gilmunto from being able to reach her.

We already weakened Gilmunto a lot! 282 HP sounds like a boatload, but he moves so slowly that we're doing a lot of damage that he can't react to.

Gilmunto doesn't even get another turn before we vanquish him


??? - Do not approach that monster!

: Whoa... close one!

: Thank you for the timely advice, stranger.

: No, no, it is I who should thank you, lass. Since the monsters arrived, well, the Mist on the mountain has been most thick and vile.

: You live in these parts? You wouldn't happen to know a mage... a great wizard by the name of Lezaford? I'm looking for him... That's why we're here.

: Mage Lezaford... It has been some time since I heard that name. Many, many years. Surprising, indeed, that I should hear it from one so young, yes?

: You mean you know him? Can you tell us where he is?

: Can I tell you? ... Yes. Yes, I should think so. The one you seek is presently standing directly in front of you.

: Huh!?


Lezaford invites Samuel and Adelle to his home, which is the spooky cabin in the mountains we saw earlier.

: And your name is Samuel, is it? Your story is of much interest to me. Here, your journal.
First, let me say that I believe it possible for you to return to your own world. And, as you yourself have suspected... that journal in your hands is the key. That which is written within its covers is of utmost importance. Doubt this not!

First he was Obi-Wan Kenobi, now he's channeling Yoda.

: But all that's written in there is stuff that's happened to me already!

: Yes, and this is precisely why it is so vital! It is a living record of who you are. It is proof of your very existence. What is a life without words to tell its story? There is great power in words. The more words your story commands, the greater its power.

: So, when I go out and do things, the journal's power grows?

: Precisely, yes. Fill all the plain pages and the dormant magicks within will waken and spill forth! Harness that power, and you will surely find your way home.

: Wait, so you mean I have to go see things, and do things to fill the journal -- that's all?

: Simply put, yes.

: Well, great! That suits me just fine. I mean, I want to find my way home, sure... It's just, the more I see of this place, the more I want to see.
I was starting to get a little confused, to be honest. But, if adventuring around Ivalice is my ticket home, I'm all set. I can just keep on doing what I've been doing! I'll enjoy myself until this book's all full, then see what happens. Thank you, Lezaford. You were just the guy I needed to see.

: Know that the words within give strength not only to the book, but to you as well. And good travels.

: Thanks again. Well, I'm off! So long!

Samuel walks out.

: So, he's from another world? Guess there's no judging from appearances, is there?

: And how fare you, gifted one?

: Gifted? Me? Hmm. I admit, I'm not your average girl.

: (off screen) What are you doing, Adelle? Let's get back to Graszton, Cid's waiting for us!

: Coming! Great, he's in a good mood. Look what I have to deal with! Well, I suppose that's that. So long, great mage.

Adelle walks out.

The cottage is now properly named on the map.


The team heads back to Graszton.

: I see... So, fill those pages, and you can return home. The more I think on it... The more I realize how right I was to invite you into our clan.

: Heh, you think? Well, what to do next? There're still plenty of places I've never been to yet. And more than a few quests I wouldn't mind taking a shot at.

: What about bidding in an auction? It helps with quests and makes it easier to get around. Control of an area pays off in unexpected ways.

: Um, an auction?

: Ah, right. An auction is, well, where clans go to vie for rights to a particular region.

: When you have those rights, you pay less for word of quests at the pub. And it's easier to come by local wares. Believe me, it's worth your time.

: Huh, sounds like I can't go wrong then. A little clan-to-clan competition sounds like fun, too.

: Then stop yammerin' about it and give it a go. It's not to my taste, but it might not be bad for the clan.

: Then it's settled! You should know, it's not gil that wins an auction, it's clan points. That measure of the recognition you earn for completing quests. Which reminds me... There's a quest up now that might well earn us some points. A bit of a woodland bomb removal. Well? Snap to it!

Adelle exits.

Finally, it's time to start breaking the game for real! Next update, anyway. This update is going on long enough, though there's one last quest I want to take care of.

: Can't fault her for lack of enthusiasm. You get going after her, now. I'll be resting for some time still. You just do what you need to, and don't worry about me, y'hear?

: Cid... Why are you helping me?

: What's gotten into you?

: Er, nothing, it's just...

: I needed you, that's why.

: Huh?

: You're my kind of kid. Thought so since the day we met. And, well, you asked for my help. So I thought that's what I'd do. Nothing strange in that.

: You're a good person, you know that, Cid?

: Away with you, 'fore I change my mind.

: Heh. Thanks, Cid.

: Stop thanking me and get going! She'll be the one jabbering your ear off if you don't hurry.

: Right, I'm off!


This is a nice simple quest with a great reward. Kuraisle Boxwood is used in a lot of recipes for powerful weapons and armor.

And this mission unlocks one of the best jobs in the game.


Who better to ask about Judges than the mage who created them?

Basically, Judges are part of a great work of magick cast upon all of Jylland (the area the game takes place in). When one swears an oath to the Judges, you become protected by that great magick. It is entirely voluntary. The Judges and the oath are powered by magick from a place called the Wellspring of Magick.

A cheap and easy way to dump more lore on the player.


Having mastered Air Render, Henri is now training as a Dragoon.

Lenolia becomes an Elementalist, now that she's mastered Cura.
The spells of an Elementalist are not the strongest, but they come in the widest range of elements, allowing you to hit every weakness. Even better, they can also inflict status conditions.

The Healing Staff is passed to Talf.

Our new Thunder Rod (see below!) is equipped by Imino.

Now, on to the Rupie Mountains to help Veis, the Assassin.


A Speed Battle is a race to see who can kill the target first. It's honestly a bit stupid, since you're both dealing damage to it at the same time. It all comes down to who deals the final blow.

This law is stupid as hell. Moogles can't use any abilities, which includes the "Item" command. Only Attacking!

But with only 4 unit slots to fill, we don't have to worry about bringing Imino.

Our target is a Malboro King. He has plenty of condition-inflicting abilities, none of which a Blue Mage can learn. The Lifespring passive is a non-removable Regen buff. Finally, the Orb of Minwu makes it immune to most debuffs.

Unfortunately, my first attempt at this quest failed! 172 HP is not nearly as much as it may seem.

So let's try this again. The goal is to get Adelle to body block the Malboro King on the bridge while everyone else pummels it from afar. If we get all of our turns in a row, we'll take it down before Clan Bowen can react.

: There's our mark. *grunt* We don't get paid enough by half for this work. Watch yourselves!

: House Bowen. At a glance they take the measure of their mark. Their skill is plain. It is well that I chose them.

: Happy you're not disappointed.

: She's come to join your clan. Will you let her in?

Since we placed Talf first on the battlefield, he's the mouthpiece for the clan. This is one of the lines that depending on who your spokesperson is.

: She would join us, and you would have us take her. Not so simple, I'm afraid. What need have we of them as are weak and unproven, eh? I've better things to do than play at nursemaid.

: As you say. Then I must prove my worth. I will fell this mark before House Bowen. Perhaps then they will learn to measure friend with the same keen eye they measure foe.

: We've brought you this far. We won't leave you hanging now!

The AI will always do this first if they can. The Invisible buff prevents the unit from being targeted by any attacks. It fades as soon as they take an action.

Bowen himself beats us to the bridge. This isn't too bad, because the AI will almost always move. I expect him to leave the bridge after attacking on his next turn.

Even better, the Clan Bowen Gria is hit by Sleep and Slow, effectively putting her out for the duration of the fight.

Bowen's Illusionist is a cheating cheater. You see, illusions cost 28 MP to use. Instead of waiting around for 3 turns or using an item, this Illusionist has Blood Price, letting him use HP instead of MP to cast spells.
Nu mou cannot normally learn this ability! There's some speculation a new job for nu mou was cut from the game, and it would have learned Blood Price.

Expect a lot of Jumping.

Also expect a lot of missing.

The counter attack deals even more damage than the original hit, but this brings the Malboro King well within killing range for us. Thanks, Bowen!

And that's it! Locking down the gria really saved us there. And actually, Henri's missed jump worked out in our favor.
Every attack has a slight variance to its damage, usually +/- 10%. In this case, we got nearly +10% damage, just enough to kill the target.

: You fought well enough, now that we've had a look at you. I think you can handle yourself without a nursemaid. Right, then. Welcome to House Bowen!

: Well done, Veis!

Samuel's line here is, "Woohoo! Way to show 'em, Veis!"

: Thank you. But I could not have done this without your help. For you. A gift to lend weight to my thanks. Go with my best wishes, Clan Sawyer.

She's still invisible, by the way.

Assassin is a terrifyingly powerful job, though it's been nerfed somewhat since its FFTA heyday. It combines devastating conditions with strong damage and amazing Speed in one deadly, rabbit-eared package.

Yada yada, nothing too exciting.

We'll have an Assassin of our own before too long.


Thank you for reading! Join us next time when Clan Sawyer puts out a forest fire and dominates the auction house.


Shop update!

Another spear for Henri. That's 2 of the 3 elemental spears found already.

Yes! Another advanced rod. Our Black Mages can finally become Time Mages!

All those Storm Stones we got have unlocked a lot of thunder-themed gear for us. Judicer's Staff is pretty good thanks to Aero, one of the few wind-element spells. Of course, we don't have a Bishop yet.

This is worth it for Sneak Attack alone, which is a really strong ability.

The Chameleon Robe is cool because it absorbs Holy-element spells. We can use this to our advantage when we get Holy-damage spells.

Not everything we find is as nice.

The Ogun Blade teaches Wild Swing, which hits everyone around you. Not a very useful ability, in my experience.

We also can unlock our first gun (Riot Gun) and handcannon (Omnis Cannon). The abilities they teach aren't bad, but we haven't unlocked the jobs that can use these weapons. No point in using rare loot for them just yet.

We already have one of these. We don't need more.