Part 21: B. Sign of the Four
Since we're basically going through the final preparations before all out war with Dhaos, I think now's a good time to take a look at our party.
On the one hand, Cless is probably overlevelled for this part (pretty much everyone is really) but I'm not used to doing this bit without his next base arte. Maybe this time I'll end up using something other than Arcane Artes for a change... eh, I'll just use different ones instead.
Also note the Gungnir here; it's not thematic or anything. I'm not using the Moon Falx because a certain something coming up soon absorbs Light attacks. Fight and Holy Symbols are logical enough; increased damage output and effective immortality. I'd be using a Mental Ring instead of the Fight Symbol to help alleviate some of the TP costs but Mint mastered Fruit Juice a long, long time ago (along with every other recipe I have).
Not giving Cless any Red Sages yet has led to some interesting realisations; Mint having a higher HP being one of them. Huh. Yes, I know she has a Black Onyx equipped and that boosts it by 30% but I didn't expect it to give her an edge.
Not much interesting equipment wise, but ignore the Princess Shawl. That's getting replaced by the second Holy Symbol from the Tower of the Zodiac. Given her 73 defence, she's actually the least squishy member of the entire party somehow (even Cless with his far superior equipment only has 70). And, hell, that 891 exp to a next level's gonna be bugging me; she learns a new arte at level 35.
...Also, goddamn that Luck is insane.
Klaus is Klaus. Lack of any decent armour so far gives him the lowest defence but the Black Onyx helps alleviate that a bit. Not much else of interest since he has the least amount of possible equips (his inability to use any hand equipment hinders way more than you'd think). Giving him the other Mental Ring in place of the Moon Crystal make help with TP costs too but, eh, the +30% helps enough.
Still lagging behind a bit but it's only by three levels now! But she'll get to 32 after everyone else reaches 35. At least there are ways to help her catch up very easily that we'll get to before too long. Nothing of interest really, shame too.
It doesn't get much use, at least from me, but I kinda like Vacuum Slash even if it has an unnervingly long attack animation. It's cheap enough and effective enough to warrant using right now if you have nothing you explicitly "need" to use. I'd have Phoenix Storm there and Roaring Kick in the no direction slot but still 3 levels off the latter.
Even if it doesn't stun the target, Toy Hammer still delays things even if its just for a moment (plus it doesn't have an overly long animation that requires you to sit there while it does things). More useful than it sounds. I could probably disable Heal at this point and it wouldn't make a difference but it's there just in case, I guess. Recover could be disabled but the AI is smart enough to not use it unless needed anyway. Silence is the same; the AI won't bother with it unless the target is a spellcaster (and not immune to it).
Sylph, Undine and Efreet are still sorta useful. Gnome decidely isn't since it only hits once; Sylph hits four times, Undine hits twice and Efreet fifteen times (though for just under 100 damage a piece). Maxwell is the best bet for now being non-elemental, possibly multi-hitting and the second most kickass Spirit. Luna being the first, but, again, something coming up absorbs Light so she's benched.
The first six are all outdated at this point, so they're not needed. Tractor Beam just flat out sucks and is useless against the one thing it might be a bit of a help for, and Ray is light elemental so it gets disabled much like Luna. Ice Tornado, Eruption, Thunder Blade and Cyclone all hit within an AoE of varying sizes as is, nothing can absorb or nullify them all and they hit multiple times each aside from Thunder Blade. And Thunder Blade deals over 1000 damage without weakness abuse anyway so it doesn't need it.