Playthrough: Bravely Advancing

Bravely Default II Box Art

Hello and welcome to The Starlight Megaphone’s playthrough of Bravely Default II, a JRPG released worldwide on the Nintendo Switch on 26 February 2021, in both physical and digital versions that are identical in terms of their content.

Bravely Default II is, despite its title, the third game in the Bravely Default series, following the Nintendo DS releases of Bravely Default: Flying Fairy and Bravely Second: End Layer. Like the first two games in the series, Bravely Default II is exclusive to a Nintendo console.

Earlier games in the Bravely Default series included poorly-received attempts by Square Enix to insert microtransactions into their full-priced titles: for example, the original Bravely Default had a time-altering mechanic which required many real-life hours to recharge, but gamers could buy (with real money) instant recharges of that ability. Thankfully, the ability was almost entirely unnecessary. The second Bravely Default game signalled Square Enix’s wise decision to retreat from that approach to game design, and was more conventional.

However, both preceding Bravely Default titles did make use of online connectivity, although the degree to which it improved the game remains debateable. In the original title, players could exhange boss battle fights, and assist one another in developing one’s virtual home town, which leads to the increased availability of items, weapons, accessories, magic spells, and similar equipment.

Spend your BP bravely, but be careful lest you default!

The Brave and Default battle modes make a return in this latest entry, with players earning BP (brave points) during battle which they can spend in order to take a turn, or bank in order to unleash several actions in a single turn. In fact, players can even spend BP that they do not have–but, should the enemy survive the assault, then the player will find himself in arrears, forced to ‘Default’ (basically ‘defend’) for several turns until they earn back sufficient BP to make it possible to again act. This gameplay design is one of the better features of the series, as it allows the party to spend themselves into negative BP on the first round and thus deal massive damage against normal monster encounters, safe in the knowledge that they will beat the monsters in that first round and thus never have to ‘pay back’ the negative BP, which resets to 0 after every battle. This reduces the amount of time spent on random encounters without removing them entirely, ensuring that a long-standing and classic game mechanic of JRPGs is preserved without unduly interrupting or slowing down gameplay.

The Job system gains further refinements.

In addition to the Brave/Default battle system, the Job System of previous Bravely Default games makes a return, now augmented with additional mechanics. The original game’s refinements were well beyond the standards of classics such as Final Fantasy V, being on par with the system of Final Fantasy Tactics or Octopath Traveller. However, the addition of new jobs and skill mechanics makes this latest entry even more appealing for job system afficionados, especially as the Bravely Default series routinely includes classic Final Fantasy jobs (or essentially analogus versions of them) along with entirely new jobs never before seen in a Square Enix game, some of which are quite clever and useful.

Extensive character development and apocalyptic plotlines are traditional parts of the Bravely Default series.

Use the comment thread below to discuss your approach to the game, challenges you have faced, secrets and new content you have uncovered, and any aids you are using in your playthrough. Do you feel that Bravely Default II (and the Bravely Default series) is still engaging and driving JRPG development forward? Or do you believe that it is too restrained or stuck in the past? Do you find the linear direction of the storyline helpful in making your way through the game, or too restrictive? What sorts of changes would you make to the game? What features would you add, remove, or change? Do you enjoy the soundtrack, art style, and voice acting? Tell us all about it and join in our discussion below! We will select some of the best comments, each week, for our podcast discussion.

Ominous characters could be friends or foes.

The aim in this playthrough is to complete the entirety of the game in about two months, ending by 1 May. Instead of milestones, we encourage you to play at your own pace–but please keep us updated about your thoughts and progress as you play the game. This will help to sustain our discussion, and will let us know when it is time to close our site playthrough.

Please join in with us and comment about your experience! The playthrough time frame is intended to allow anyone and everyone to participate, regardless of speed of play or familiarity with the series. Comment and tell your friends!

Without further adieu, we invite you to join The Starlight Megaphone’s staff members and readers in Bravely Advancing, our Bravely Default II playthrough!


  1. I started playing at midnight. As I hoped, starting from the beginning is so far way more engaging than the demos. I’m still in the prologue, but having a great time. I’ve switched to Japanese voice acting, but I do that with any game I can to try and see what I can pick up of the language. From what I can tell (which is admittedly not much), the acting is pretty cheesy in Japanese too.

    I like that despite all it shares with the 3DS games, it also feels like it has a fresh gameplay identity.

  2. @Ethos: I am absolutely loving it, and I have been thoroughly enjoying the VA. The main character’s voice reminds me of Tidus, and Sloan reminds me of Maechan. I’m thirty minutes in and I have encountered:
    Sloan (Shakespearean)
    Dag (Australian)
    Seth (American)
    Elvis (Scot)
    Adelle (Welsh)
    Gloria (British)
    Selene (Nordic).

    Dag said ‘fair dinkum’ and I laughed out loud. He sounds just like Shane Warne!

  3. @Caspius – I played until my eyes got so heavy that I dropped my Switch on my chest. I did expect to enjoy it, but I’m also relieved that I was right!

  4. I’m on my way to what I presume is the sand land from the demo now. I’m really enjoying the game like I thought I would. The fact that they give you an overpowered guest party member right at the start reminds me of the gameboy saga games. I loved Dag’s fun lines and the main party characters all seem interesting and fun as well.

    I’m hoping to see some interesting jobs with unique mechanics like guardian or exorcist from Bravely Second. I am excited to see what is next.

  5. Dag is 100% SiliconNooB with a pompador.

    I did all the quests that I could do in the starting town and I’m on my way to the S-town from the first demo (Savrola? Salonia?).

    I’ve been playing it docked, and I have noticed momentary hitching/slowdown at times, and the Switch fans do run continually. The game is version 1.0.0 but I hope that we can get an optimisation patch.

    The game itself looks beautiful, though. The towns are simply gorgeous and I love how the camera works with interiors and rooms.

    The menus are great, too, although I’d like to see a list of quests by number, including completed quests. It would be helpful to know what I’ve done in addition to being able to work out what I’ve missed.

  6. @Caspius – I was just thinking that about the quests. Very confused that such a list doesn’t exist.

    In case anybody’s wondering, the single handed controls are excellent. I use them often while playing Pokemon to snack and game and it’s very impressive how well-implemented everything is with BD2 as well.

    This isn’t new to this entry, but I do love the Job costume designs.

  7. I just got the Asterisk in the Underground Reservoir and I’m already so excited about the job combinations available.

  8. End of the prologue hurts! Wah!

    (I mentioned on the podcast that I thought that I had missed Quest 10, but it turned out that it was on the world map, and I bumped into it when I was on the way to Savlon.)

  9. The game really is beautiful. I was kind of ambivalent about the style before release but in action it is really appealing.

    I’m getting ready for a rematch with the final boss of chapter one. The fact that they can heal with an attack made my party’s damage per turn too low to really win. I’m leveling my other physical fighter in the vanguard job to get the heavy earth damage attack. It seems like a lot of the monsters and bosses in this chapter are weak to earth which had made that attack invaluable.

    I really like the job that you get from the underground reservoir boss. The job has a lot of useful attacks and passives in addition to its unique mechanic.

  10. @LC11: The demo looks like a cute JRPG, a further development of the BD formula. But the real release, in practise, is like playing a game set in the illustrations of a beautiful fantasy tale or an elaborate pop-up book. Towns, in particular, are a feast for the eyes.

    This is the sort of angle that Squeenix should be pursuing with all their might. They cannot keep up with other companies on the bleeding edge of photorealism and special effects. But when it comes to making beautiful classic games, they are still in a class by themselves.

    Drop the FF7 Remake project. Instead, rebuild FF6 in the Octopath Style! Kill the FF7 mobile games. Instead, create FFXVI in a Xenoblade/BotW Switch game! Etc.

  11. I’m not sure what everyone else is doing, but before I activated any other jobs, I switched everyone to Freelancer and made sure that I mastered it. The two JP-increasing abilities together increase JP earned by 70% That’s massive and worth the time spent.

    I finally mastered Freelancer for all four characters in the ruins south of Savalon (fights there can give around 50+ JP per battle). I’m at the save point in that dungeon right now.

    I’ve done every quest I can find so far (up to no. 20 or so), and my party is L.14. Apart from all mastering Freelancer, Seth is a Rank 6 Vanguard, Gloria is a Rank 5 White Mage, Elvis is a Rank 8 Black Mage, and Adelle is a Rank 7 Monk.

    What’s everyone else’s approach so far?

  12. Later losers! Catch you all on the flipside!


    Back in Savalon, chasing down the water crystal, but time for bed. More tomorrow after work, I hope!

  13. I loved Orpheus!

    I only bothered to grind for the first JP increasing ability with everyone so far. I am around Level 18 and my party is:

    Seth- Beastmaster(7) / Monk(7)
    Gloria- Bard(9) / White Mage(8)
    Elvis- Black Mage(11) / White Mage(7)
    Adelle Beastmaster(7) / Vanguard (9)

  14. Unlike my typical inclinations, I haven’t been grinding jobs or levels for the sake of grinding them yet. I’ve been switching jobs at a whim and really enjoying the playstyle so far.

    For the moment, I’m using Xel (Seth) as my warrior type, Gloria as my mage, Adelle as my brawler, and Elvis as my variety pack with a focus on abilities. At the moment it looks like this:

    Xel – Thief/Vanguard
    Gloria – Black Mage/White Mage
    Elvis – Beastmaster/Bard
    Adelle – Berserker/Monk

    Despite not necessarily aiming to max out at jobs at the moment (although the game at one point says “level 12 and beyond” which implies that they’ll open up more later, or maybe have some sort of prestige option?) I have maxed out Gloria’s White Mage, Elvis’ Black Mage, Xel’s Vanguard, and Adelle’s Monk.

    I like that the game hints at or implies good fits for characters and jobs but that choice and experimentation is still the king.

    At first I wasn’t into how much of a marathon the boss battles are, but after I had to restart my first boss fight (to gain the Berserker asterisk) and all I did was switch up my jobs and didn’t grind a moment and I had a much easier time, I’m more on board.

    I really like the focus on making this game play like an adventure. Although you can get rich enough for plenty of items, it can start to feel dangerous out there and the map only gives you so much information before you have to actually go out and look and the dungeons have no map at all and I’m a fan of both those choices. I do wish that the overworld didn’t have the Blue Dragon angle issue in which it’s very rare for me to be able to see more than a few steps ahead of me. I don’t think being able to see more of the map visually would take away the sense of exploration and adventure and I’d rather see more and have some pop-in if that was the reason for the decision.

    I’m still not a big fan of the visuals, but it’s simply a preference because I do agree that playing the game over time makes you feel inside of it and the storybook comparison is a good one.

    I said this before, but the more job costumes I see the more I love them, especially how tailored to each character’s personality they are.

    All in all, I am having a great time. Like we were talking about in Discord, it really makes me feel like a teenager again. I’ve got my monitor up by my mattress and I’m excited to open the menus and tinker. It’s been since, what, FF12 that I’ve felt like this for a console game?

  15. @Ethos: “I do wish that the overworld didn’t have the Blue Dragon angle issue in which it’s very rare for me to be able to see more than a few steps ahead of me. I don’t think being able to see more of the map visually would take away the sense of exploration and adventure and I’d rather see more and have some pop-in if that was the reason for the decision.”

    I do agree. My guess is that there was an intention to try to hearken back to the old ‘top-down’ view of a world map, without actually going all the way in that direction, but the result feels a bit like a camera issue instead. The vertical range needs more play, so that I can depress the camera and see what is ‘ahead’ a bit better.

  16. I just got the gambler job from a quest in the gaming hall. I’m excited to try it out.

  17. If you haven’t been making use of the old lady and her borrow-boat, I strongly recommend it. When I get done playing for the night, I go see her and ‘set out’ on an adventure. Then I put the system into sleep mode. The max ‘adventure’ length is 12 hours and usually it’s that long or longer until I can turn the system on again.

    When I speak to her again, I get a list of events some of which are associated with treasure and BY FAR the most common reward is JP orbs, which give you free JP. You can imagine how useful that is!

  18. Also @Ethos: “Like we were talking about in Discord, it really makes me feel like a teenager again.”

    This. 👆🏻

  19. Oh I’m definitely sending those ships out. My Idle Game habit has trained me well to maximize such things.

  20. Finally! Began playing last night and I love it already! Played this morning too and got completely wrapped up in it. And as always I’m slower than molasses, even slower than my usual self with Bravely games. I get so wrapped up in filling out menus and buying every item and exploring and fighting and jobs… I have made it to the map and looking for treasure chests lol.

  21. @Winter – Despite my earlier comments, now that I’m running into more trouble from regular battles, I’ve returned to my more typical style of playing which is a lot like you describe.

    Speaking of, thanks for the tip LC11. For whatever reason I didn’t check the gaming hall when I went to do the second round of quests at Savalon. Optional jobs is another excellent part of this series!

  22. I quite like the card game!

    Once I won all the cards from the other two players in the gambling hall, it was easy to crush Scarlet or whatever her name is. I don’t know if I’ll play a lot more of it unless there are more jobs to get by doing so.

    I was pleased to see Orpheus make a return with more of his genuinely LOL lines. ‘Don’t hate the player, hate the game!’

    I’ve finished the waterway and all quests so far. In addition to Freelancer, my characters have mastered their current jobs (Van, Whm, Blm, Mnk) so it’s about time to add a Beastmaster, Gambler, and Bard into the mix!

  23. I like the card game as well! I imagine that it will be like the card game in FFIX in which I’ll have aspirations to play more than I actually do.

    The sewers/institute was giving me a lot of trouble and the asterisk holder at the end DESTROYED me, so I’ve been going back and doing some exploring and grinding. I enjoy that each area has a completely unique dungeon just for sidequests so far. Also, in lieu of a maxed Freelancer job, I’ve been making great use of the food which really does help with JP quite a bit. Plus, with all these jobs, two slots for JP Up and Up is just too expensive!

  24. Made it to Wiswald. IT’S CLEYA! Seriously, this game is properly excellent: it is like playing for the first time the best bits of all of the best RPGs that I’ve ever played.

    Despite the storybook setting, the storyline does not pull any punches. It’s a violent and bloody little game, with a plot straight out of Final Fantasy Tactics.That’s another good thing!

    At first, I thought that the voice acting was “alright”, but now I think it is properly good. There are some lines that work so much better when delivered out loud, such as when Truff asks (improbably) for some schnitzel with jam, and Seth responds “Well, that’s… specific.” I actually laughed out loud. This game has had me laughing out loud quite a bit along the way, but it is also very serious at times.

    I messed around a bit with the bard, beastmaster, and gambler jobs, but didn’t like any of them, so my party is Seth (Bar/Van), Gloria (Whm/Blm), Elvis (Blm/Whm), and Adelle (Thf/Mnk). I’m playing on Normal and none of the bosses have killed me so far, although they do push me a bit. I think I may be a bit over levelled–L.21 now–so that may be part of it. I am also being thorough about doing all quests and collecting all chests.

    I haven’t been lucky enough to kill a Wiki-wiki yet, but I’ve been close. The damned things run away!

  25. I just finished the Wiswald section which was delightfully dark. The battle against the shieldmaster boss took forever but I guess that is to be expected with a defense based boss. The final boss was really fun to fight though and a really fun character.

    I ended up giving into the temptation to use the money throwing skill with gambler a few times against the bosses. It seems to do a (high) defined amount of damage regardless of defenses and such. I haven’t been able to kill a Wiki-wiki either but I think that specific attack could do it. I removed gambler for the moment though because there were some enemies that would charm the gambler and they would use the money throw attack against my party every time.

  26. Does anyone know if the game has to be running for the boat idle mechanic to work? That is, could I start the exploration and then quit the game (possibly play something else), and then relaunch the game with that time counting? Or does the game have to remain launched?

    So far I haven’t closed the game–I just go to the Switch menu and then put the system to sleep without quitting the game.

  27. I haven’t actually tested, but I’ve used my Switch for other things and my impression is that the boat does not continue to explore when I’m using other software.

    I really didn’t expect to like or use the Bard, but because it saved me when I was underleveled in the Berserker fight, I’ve come to love it as an Elvis staple.

    The Beastmaster is a job that’s like the card game. I like and appreciate it and I had a good time using it, but it’s not going to see a lot of play time. I had Gloria using it for the 20% MP discount passive, but then…

    The Red Mage! I never care about Red Mage! Maybe I’ve missed other games starting to move in this direction, but I love that it provides other elemental magic and a different style of healing as opposed to just learning the basic spells. It really feels like a unique identity and Gloria looks outstanding in her red coat. I can’t get enough of these asterisk designs.

  28. @Ethos: I know I’ve played another game where Rdm has air/earth/status magic when the Blm has ice/fire/thunder, but I can’t recall what that was. FF XIV maybe? Or maybe even FFXII? That sounds about right. Certainly in FFXI the Rdm’s {Enhancing Magic} was more important than the damage spells themselves: apart from MP recovery, he could enhance weapons to deal elemental damage on strike, which was very useful for {Skillchain}.

  29. Either way I’m into it. I’ve given the Red Mage many chances, but this is the first time that I’m enjoying it.

    And I’m having a much easier time with the bosses now. It didn’t take much grinding so it makes sense to me that if you maxed out everybody’s freelancer job in chapter one that you’d be in a good spot. This is a game I might even play on Hard mode on a later playthrough when I’m more familiar with everything that’s to come so that I can feel really in charge of my combinations.

  30. I am considering switching it to Hard Mode now, because so far the boss fights have been the only moments of sincere challenge (more of the endurance than the strategy variety of challenge). I have a friend who has been playing it in Hard Mode, but he has been doing it by spending lots of time using the Forage command with the battle speed maxed out, and then using the items he finds to basically buff his party up. I don’t think I’ll do that (it seems a bit cheap to me), but it’s something worth considering if anyone is struggling!

  31. The game has to be running. I accidentally left a different game running before going to bed once and didn’t get the time credit.

    I also really like how the red mage is has different magic and healing spells.

  32. I’m coasting now that I’ve started battling and exploring more, but I don’t mind having it be easy for the time being, I’ll feel it out.

    I’ll say this in defense of the Beastmaster: I really like that it’s a shared beast pool and with the Beast Whisperer ability I can build up a huge backlog of Beasts and then pull out the class at some point down the road to unleash the zoo upon some poor asterisk holder.

  33. I’m looking to start up my playthrough today! I’ve got a bit more of FFIX to finish up first. I’m very near the end with 91 cards out of 100, and all the side content apart from Ozma done. Play time on FFIX is 66:12 now.

    My first impressions or thoughts of Bravely Default II from the demos are; something doesn’t quite click for me in terms of art style. The 3D models remind me of quite bland DS era RPGs.

    The menus and graphic design are terribly made. I thought the Bravely games on 3DS had such nice slick minimalist menus and in this one they have poor contrast and design. For example the red text and numbers against dark backgrounds just doesn’t jump out clearly to me. I do have a red green colour deficiency, but still…

    I’m looking forward to starting it up and hopefully changing some of my worries about the game.

  34. I still prefer the look of the 3DS Bravely Defaults in general and in the menus, but as somebody who was also unimpressed by the visuals in the demo, it is absolutely a different experience while playing it. The style makes more sense when playing the game properly and the menus provide an excellent amount of detail and I haven’t thought negatively at all since I started my own file in the game proper.

  35. I quite like the names in this game, all of which make me smile in some way.

    Halcyon, which means happy and prosperous, as in the idiom ‘halcyon days’.

    Savalon, the sunny desert, has a name like Savlon (an antiseptic cream applied to burns, amongst other things).

    Wiswold, a portmanteau of wis (as in Wizard) and wold (a forest, woods, etc.). Although I have a juvenile imagination and continually think of wis as in wizz, urine: ‘Piss Woods’.

  36. Then, the characters!

    Elvis. I mean. Elvis! He’s a noble in the game, and of course Elvis was The King!

    Bernard, which everyone pronounces in the weird US midwest way of ‘berNAHRD’ instead of ‘BERnerd’. Also, Bernard is so peculiar!

    Anihol, whose name is a lot like Animal, appropriate for a beastmaster.

    Castor and Pollux for OBVIOUS reasons.

    Dromed, in the desert, which makes one think of DROMEDARY, a desert camel.

    And GALAHAD, which also needs no explanation!

  37. I have a theory developing that at some point in this story, the party is going to have the ability to affect, change, or revisit the past.

    There are many things which suggest this, storywise, but one very noticeable thing is a scene in Savalon with Prince Castor, who is interrupted by a messenger enquiring (at least so he claims) what he will be wearing.

    Castor thinks the request a silly one, and with his brother Pollux out of the picture, it doesn’t really matter. But imagine that request comes from the (future) party, travelling back to swap out Pollux with Castor at that point, and needing to ensure that the one twin can impersonate the other.

    It’s the sort of thing we’ve seen in other games, including something not wholly unlike it in DQXI. I wonder if that’s what will happen–one way of addressing all the troubling deaths in the storyline, too.

  38. @Caspius – Nice observation! Such a theory would fit with the first game as well which had the last section dedicated to replaying the same moments in time over and over and over again. There’s certainly the sense that very little of the true nature of this world has been revealed to us. Or at least those of us who are still around Wiswold or just beyond.

    Not sure if you caught that Elvis’ last name is Lesley as well.

  39. @Caspius – Also I forgot to point out how much I liked your succinct little sum-up: “It’s a violent and bloody little game”

  40. @Ethos: I think I may have to revise that ‘little’ lest it be confused for ‘short’ when I mean more that it is compact (but not at all in a bad way).

    I missed Elvis’ last name, but that is another LOL moment right there!

  41. When I had a choice of which dungeon to do first in Wiswold, I went with the Institute, so now I have the Red Mage asterisk. Like all of the job costumes in this game, it’s a really significant departure from what I expected it to look like, but I like it a lot.

    I know I am very over levelled now: the whole party is L.26 and my Seth Van/Bar absolutely wipes the floor with anything I encounter. One Level Slash kills just about everything on the screen, and one cast of cure brings back to life lost. It’s a massive powerhouse mastering those two jobs.

    The fact that he does so much damage allows me to pretty much do whatever I want with the other characters, so I’ve been mastering all the other jobs as they suit me. Now that I have RDM the party is:

    Seth (Van/Bar)
    Gloria (Rdm/Whm)
    Elvis (Rdm/Blm)
    Adelle (Rdm/Thf)

    Red mages ahoy! ;)

  42. I’m about to fight the final boss of chapter 3. All the boss fights so far in the chapter have been really enjoyable.

    Red mage only gets better when you master it and get the specialty that double casts every spell for no additional cost. I switch my mages to Red Mage for almost every boss battle.

  43. Still in prologue over here, but having a blast!! Been slending considerable time grinding and cutting grass to get money to buy everything in the first shop. Doing all quests I came across both day and night. I finally moved on to Vale of Sights, but I think I’m just going to google and see what rare monsters are in the first area before I move on and if I can do any of them yet.

    I adore this game!!! Haven’t had this experience with a game in a long time! Maybe since XC2. It draws me in and I want to explore and know everything!

  44. I just finished chapter 3 and the game really only seems to be getting better and better in my opinion. There was a section near the end of the chapter that was reminiscent of FF6 and the ending hyped me up for what the next chapter holds.

  45. @LC11: The fact that the RDM 2nd speciality is double-cast makes me EVEN MORE EAGER to max out everyone’s RDM job class immediately.

  46. Made it to Endor or Endorse or Andoria or whatever it is. I don’t think I’ll use Pictomancer very seriously. I have mastered Shieldbastard (or whatever) on Seth, so he has Van, Bar, and Shd to switch around as needed for just the righr balance of damage/defence.

    I mastered Rdm on the other three, and also mastered Rng on Adelle. I know that, when I hear ‘ranger’, I think ‘1920s eveningwear with a black lace veil.’ So I’m glad the devs picked up on that!

  47. I take back what I said about Pictomancer–it makes a great subjob for Whm, as a means to better assist in combat!

  48. I’m about 6 hours in and past the prologue now, taking my time and doing all the side quests I can find, and really enjoying it so far!

    Some of the optional battles and the first few bosses had a good amount of challenge so far, but I can imagine the more jobs I unlock the easier it might get.

    The polish is amazing. All of the noises and effects in the menus work really nicely and much better than I thought they would look. I love that distance blur effect.
    The only graphically poor thing for me is some of the character models, they look a bit soulless, and at time quite poorly made. It’s like they took a 3DS game and polished it up for a switch release. Some of the textures don’t look quite good enough on this level of resolution? I’m no expert on this stuff.

    There’s no quest log? Just coloured pips floating around? That irks me slightly.

    The music and voice acting seem amazing.

    Also, Elvis. I’m Scottish and finding him so funny, even down to his blatant alcoholism stereotype.

    Also @Winter-dont spend too long grinding too unnecessarily; I 100% completed both Bravely games on 3DS and found you’ll often get a job or combo of skills later that will make it much easier to grind exp, pg or JP. But I know from previous playthroughs that’s your style!

  49. Also, I can’t remember if I mentioned about the colour and graphics. I work as an optometrist and have a red green colour deficiency. So it’s an area of interest to me in games.
    If I miss out on a quest or something because I don’t notice the difference between blue and white speech bubbles and narrowly miss out on 100% of the quests I’ll be annoyed.
    It is more the red numbers and things I’ll struggle with but I don’t know why they made the quest indicator so subtle, why not change it to a question mark? I think they had something easier in the 3DS games.
    It’s 2021, why do games not take this into account? Ishihara first published his famous colour vision test over 100years ago by this point!
    Sorry for the rant and second post 😅

  50. @Berserk:

    The quest tracker is in the Travelogue. It only tracks active quests, so once you complete them you won’t see them there anymore. And, if you have more than three active quests, you can choose which ones will have their pips display on the screen. That’s pretty good, although I really would like a list that includes completed quests, so I can better see if I have missed one.

    The freelancer job includes JP boosting abilities. Together, they take three of your ability slots, but you don’t have to have them equipped unless you are levelling a job class (the only thing for which you need JP). I’m not sure if Ethos realised that when he said that they take up too many slots. I have six or seven jobs mastered on every character now, and I don’t level jobs that I don’t intend to use, so a lot of the time my characters are fully mastered and don’t need extra JP, so I don’t need those abilities equipped.

    About side quests: make sure that, after story events, you go back to places that you have been, both day AND night–lots of new quests becomes available. Also, press the R stick to get into “panoramic mode” when you are in town, and you will see the blue “…” quest indicators pop-up (non-quest speech bubbles don’t show up in panoramic mode, so you won’t be confused). It will even display when the quest NPCs are inside of buildings, unless those buildings count as a separate zone: e.g. the castle in Halcyon, the place/dungeons in savalon, the institute/slums in Wiswold, &c.

    I just reached Rimedhal, and WOW that is dark. I have also been thoroughly enjoying the Dag & Selene sidequests, watching them trying to do the same quests as the party. It’s a great ‘alternate perspective’ and is really developing them as characters.

    @Ethos: The optional salvemaker job (obtained in Endorsia) doesn’t use those collectible items as components, so it’s looking increasingly like they’re just for selling.

  51. Those collectable items are just for selling.

    The Rimedhal storyline is pretty dark indeed.

    Pictomancers passive at level 9 is fantastic. I combined it with pressure points from monk and am doing around 1900-3600 damage per (single) attack. Being able to perform skills that cost 1 BP for none is great. Daub is a pretty nice status effect that I found some use for against enemies that have a lot of physical or magic resistances.

  52. Ranger does a load of damage. It gets a boost for consecutive actions, plus a second specialty that returns bp on crit. You can pair it with a beastmaster ability that increases damage 10% per brave used and it shines.

    My most useful job combo has been Van/Bar. Seth does about 5K damage to all enemies with Level Slash, and the cost for that is about 1k life–Gloria heals that with a single cure. Most battles last one attack from him, which really speeds things along. I mastered Shieldbastard only for the ability that makes equip in hand increase rather than decrease speed (to get Seth’s turn to come up faster).

  53. One thing I keep meaning to mention is that I love, Love, LOVE how they have handled the world map music: The piece of music itself is fantastic, but every time you go to a new area of the world the arrangement of the track changes–the core tune remains the same, but the instrumentation and harmonies shift to suit the area: e.g. Rimedhal’s version, being snowy, has sleigh bells and a pan-flute-like melody. It’s a lot like FF9’s repeated remixing of The Place I’ll Return to Someday. Brilliant move.

  54. Pictomancer surprised me (like many jobs in this game that I would normally ignore). So creative to have it such that you can cast the abilities on yourself for free as buff versions.

    @Caspius – You beat me to it! I was coming on here to talk about the music which I haven’t mentioned yet. I’m not particularly impressed by the music overall. It’s all very well suited to the areas and usually starts off strong, but each piece tends to not really say much more than its opening phrase. That’s typical of most video game music, but still a disappointment. The exception is the overworld music! I was just appreciating the different arrangements. And not only do they suit each area’s theme, the theme grows darker in tone to match the growing dark tone of the game and what I still expect to be a major turning point after all four crystals are gathered.

    I’m still having an absolutely wonderful time and I am really enjoying leveling up tons of different jobs even if just for passive ability flexibility (MP Saver stashed away in Beastmaster’s level 10 slot isn’t going to elude me!) but two small disappointments:

    -I was so excited to enter Glynn’s dream but was disappointed when it was literally the exact same area without even any new enemies. Understandable to not be able to design a whole new area and enemies for a sidequest, but still too bad.

    -I miss the Adventurer as the save points! That strange man and his fox had so much more personality than the glowing red orbs, so I’m curious as to why they made that change.

  55. Oh, and to clarify, the JP Up and Up requiring 2 slots is just a neurotic thing for me. I don’t like swapping my passives around a lot. I choose my five and only change one when I plan to so so semi-permanently. There’s no good reason for this beyond letting my brain have some harmless irrational things to hang on to for diplomatic purposes.

  56. @Ethos: I love the music! Each area makes me go ‘hmm, this is my favourite yet!’ I’m just leaving Rimedhal now… it’s my favourite track (yet)!

  57. Also, I have Beastmaster mastered and MP is so plentiful (and other abilities work better at maintaining mp) that MP cost reduction doesn’t even get a look-in.

  58. I wish there was a button to temporarily turn off icons during the zoomed out perspective. I’m in Rimedhal this very moment and I just want to gawk at the incredible art of the place in its entirety. The towns really are visual masterpieces.

  59. @Ethos: That’s another thing where I keep thinking ‘wow, this is the best yet!’

  60. The Salvemakers second specialty is the ultimate monk crossover:

    All item effects are increased when the user is empty-handed. Any effects earned from compounding will also be intensified, and the BP cost of all abilities will be reduced by one.

    Yowzayowza, this is on top of a bunch of abilities that already strengthen items, too.

  61. I really love all the powerful combinations that allow for so many different playstyles. I had slowed down a little at the Salve Maker boss fight but I’m right back into being super hyped to play, so I look forward to making a lot of progress tonight.

    (69th comment!)

  62. The plot twist in Rimedhal actually shocked me. It’s a sign of my investment and I’m into it.

  63. @Berserk I know 😅(But thank you still) I played the first Bravely. My playstyle is definitely not efficient. But even when I know it’s not I just have too much fun in the first area to move on 🙈 I finally did though. In chapter one now and getting close to 15 hours. About to enter a ruin dungeon.

    Still loving it. Feels like we have been waiting for a game like this for years! I feel like a kid!

    Square Enix baffles me to no end. They proudly churn out crappy mobile stuff like it’s gold and completely disregard anything fans have to say about direction of their most well known franchise. Then suddenly with their other franchise they want to ask us for direction and release an amazing game like this! And you think to yourself oh did they learn? But nope next breath they announce some mobile again. Wish I could read their minds sometimes. 😅

  64. Square Enix baffles me to no end. They proudly churn out crappy mobile stuff like it’s gold and completely disregard anything fans have to say about direction of their most well known franchise. Then suddenly with their other franchise they want to ask us for direction and release an amazing game like this! And you think to yourself oh did they learn? But nope next breath they announce some mobile again. Wish I could read their minds sometimes.

    It’s because different factions within Square Enix are led by different people with different approaches. Bravely Default, Octopath Traveller, and Project Triangle Strategy are headed up by Tomoya Asano, who seems quite humble and eager to please customers, which is why he’s so responsive to criticism.

    Unfortunately for us the people who hold the most power within Square Enix are out of touch and arrogant losers like Tetsuya Nomura, Yoshinori Kitase, and Shinji Hashimoto, who worked on a handful of legendary games back in the 1990s, but have only ruined games since then. At least Nintendo only has one Miyamoto, whereas Square Enix has three of them!

  65. ^ Oh, and also Motomu Toriyama – you can add that complete turd in human clothing to the list of Square Enix dead weight that gets treated as royalty!

  66. A reminder, I think, that even in a hollowed-out husk of a great company, like Square Enix, there are still people who believe in and love great, classic, JRPGs.

  67. Finally killed a pair of ‘Big Wiki-Wiki Bird’ in the Dragonmaw cave. Gave about 150jp each and probably about 3,000pg

    Dragoon jump did a ton of damage to them, and Elvis using stonega with RDM mastered (doublecast!) wiped them out.

  68. Chapter 3 is just so good.

    I had only the faintest suspicion about PLOT TWIST! Now this feels even more like a part of the Bravely Default universe.

    Gwydion reminds me of the White Dragon from Lunar Silver Star or Gramps in XBC2, although sadly Gwilym isn’t quite as comical as Nall!

  69. Also, I just had my first software crash in the Hall of holies, at the end of the party chat that is available as soon as you enter.

    Hurray for autosave!

  70. The boss battle to get the fire Crystal, against the Oracle asterisk, was the biggest pain in the arse I have encountered in the game so far. The boss has a ‘Counter Any Ability’ passive which gives BP when triggered. He responds by using Bomb Arms (2000 fire damage to the whole party). He will also reflect the whole party, making it harder to cure. So, that’s fun!

    I got around the curing problem by using Spiritmaster, which can summon a healing spirit to bypas reflect, and can cast regen, which pretty much kept me at full hp most of the time. I had to be pretty creative with using multiple BP at times in order to keep everyone turning over.

    The trick is not to be bogged down playing defensively, because you’re giving the boss BP anyway. So keep landing very strong attacks – but NOT weak ones, because those give him BP and he can counter with more bomb arms or Stop.

  71. I breezed through the first 90% of that boss battle three times and then he, well, you described it best.

    I got by that last push of his by saving up the Spiritmaster’s special for those sweet auto-revives.

    Can I mention that I love the Spiritmaster job?

  72. Spiritmaster saved my butt in that fight, along with Dragoon (can’t hit Adelle if she’s in the air). I had just switched to Swordmaster on Seth and I regret that I did so, because it was bloody useless, as was Elvis with Rdm/Blm. But I managed it, although at one point I was down to Adelle only in critical hp, and at several other points only Gloria (Spiritmaster 1hp lifesaver is amazing) and Adelle.

  73. I love that this thread has made me take a second look at jobs I looked past.

    I looked past ranger but It makes my free pressure points strategy even better. I’m doing 5000-7100 damage when performing it 4 times in a row now.

    I beat the Oracle fight the first time because I just happened to have something equipped to Adelle that negated fire damage and two other party members took half fire damage. It was pure luck I had those things equipped.

    I just beat Adam who was a really rough fight. I was able to win through things like Freelancer’s stand ground specialty, Spiritmaster’s spirited defense specialty, re-raise, and the noble sacrifice passive. The goal being to make it as hard as possible to actually get all four party members down at the same time as possible.

  74. So … I was in the desert ruins exploring the dungeon. Was heading back to town to restart the ship exploration. Warped back to first town. And well. Now I’m strangely finding myself by the besch in the first area using fish treats and fighting battles for jp lol. Having too much fun in this game. Getting close to 20 hours and still in chapter 1. Can’t fault them for not giving my moneys’ worth with this game xD

  75. I forgot to mention that I really like the throwback to FF6/WA/Suiko3 at the end of Chapter 3 when the game gives you three storyline paths to follow!

  76. I was having a ton of trouble beating the next major boss after Adam. This was until I realized that I had mastered enough classes with everybody through the 1.7X JP boost that main-classing freelancer would give everyone an around 150 point boost to all stats because of the specialty. That and godspeed strike which was doing around 10000 damage per attack and then another 10000 damage a little while later like an echo. The boss music had a throwback to part of a bravely default one boss track which was fun.

    I also liked the 3 different path section. I decided to go in a reverse world tour eventually ending up back where the adventure started.

  77. I like all the battle music so far and I love when games switch the main battle music partway through the game, so I’m a fan all the way through.

    I went to Savalon first and am doing a sidequest that’s too tough for my party right now in an attempt to level up a little.

    I’ve been curious to see what the tipping point for that Freelancer ability would be. Also curious about the similar Beastmaster stat buffs I’ll get especially because I have Adelle capturing beasts frequently with the passive ability.

  78. I started out the three paths with Halcyon, because I like King Vern. And I was not disappointed because Lonsdale is a brilliant, General Leo-esque character.

    I appreciate that the Big Boss music is special for Lonsdale. This game continues to delight at every turn!

    My party at the fight is L.51:
    Seth (Van/Bar)
    Gloria (Spi/Whm)
    Elvis (Rdm/Ora)
    Adelle (Drg/Rng)

    It’s trivially easy to max any job at this point. There’s a Sprite miniboss outside Hydragenea Hills which gives 250jp a fight and respawns every time you reenter the zone. I can kill it in the first round before it can even act and with both JP boosting abilities, that’s 425jp per battle. At 4x battle speed I can master a job from L.1 in about 10 minutes.

    With that said, I am 95% certain that this game is going to expand the levels that jobs have. There are several clues to this (e.g. ‘raising a job to 12 or beyond…’)

  79. I love Lonsdale. He has at least two more quests that highlight him.

    My boss fight party is usually:

    Seth (Fre/Thf)
    Gloria (Spi/Whm)
    Elvis (Rdm/Slv-Mkr)
    Adelle (Fre/Thf)

    Whereas during random battles my fighters are sub-classing monks for pressure points and the mages sub-class White Mage and Salve-Maker. The main class is whatever job I am trying to max out.

  80. I absolutely crushed poor Lonsdale. I think I must be way ahead of where the game expects at this point. All enemies have been running away from me for the past twenty hours.

    On to Savalon, where things seem to be–at first, anyway–somewhat less dire.

  81. I like that Savalon kept up the tradition of including a murder mystery section of the game. After having trouble with most of the bosses, that’s no longer the case. The Savalon boss was no problem and had even less of a problem with the Wiswald boss who Adelle was doing 9999 a hit to with no counters.

    Also, I don’t remember a life before the Spiritmaster class and I don’t want to remember such a life.

    I’m not grinding jobs yet and I’m enjoying just leveling them naturally and occasionally using the JP orbs to push a job to the max when I’m not having the best time with it.

    @Caspius – I made that observation way back in the beginnings of this thread! –
    “Despite not necessarily aiming to max out at jobs at the moment (although the game at one point says “level 12 and beyond” which implies that they’ll open up more later, or maybe have some sort of prestige option?) I have maxed out Gloria’s White Mage, Elvis’ Black Mage, Xel’s Vanguard, and Adelle’s Monk.”

  82. @Caspius – I imagine those broken stone archways will come into play around the same time.

  83. I’m about 12 hrs in and slightly stuck at the Beastmaster asterisk boss in the underground reservoir.

    Seth (BLM/FRE)
    Gloria (WHM/FRE)
    Elvis (BLM/FRE)
    Adelle (BLM/MON)

    I grinded everyone’s Freelancer to lv9 so far for the JP up and will max them out if I can.
    This party I set up to take out this boss battle. Silence immunity on everyone, and it worked well dampening a lot of the damage incoming and avoiding counter attacks. It’s worked well until the Darude Sandstorm phase where she pulls out a sandworm monster, where I then die quickly. Might need more support like the Bard for buffs.
    I like to experiment with different setups..but I do feel bad I’m so far behind and will struggle to finish the game in the playthrough. Any tips for this Beastmaster Anihal?

  84. Finally beat her for the Beastmaster asterisk! I actually used poison to kill her indirectly while I sat back, healed with Cura, Treat, saved up some defaulted turns and took out the minions with single target magic. Quite a hard boss! I’m sort of surprised I had that much of a problem with it though.

  85. I also had issues with that boss. I ended up with only Adelle alive when I won the battle. That and the next boss battle were ones I found hardest until the final bosses of chapters 4 and 5.

  86. I’ve been struggling to find any free time for a few days as I cope with work, but I’m essentially caught up now so tonight and all day tomorrow I will have time for some progress! I’m going to be sorting out Savalon tonight!

  87. I’m in the battle with ??? in Savalon and I just want to reiterate how much I love the different tiers of battle music. Takes me back to FF4/6 with their battle, boss, ultraboss, final boss schema. It is a wonderful audio cue to know ‘this isn’t just a boss! It’s more!’

  88. Adelle on Shadow/Thief using Godspeed strike is just incredible. 20k per attack!

  89. In the Flying Fortress, approaching level 60 with about 60hours on the clock (including lots of needless grinding and idling time). Strong ‘end of game’ vibes but it feels far too soon! I feel like I’ve hardly played at all even though the clock says 60h!

  90. Between Godspeed Strike and Amped Strike, poor Adam didn’t have a chance. I absolutely destroyed him.

    On to Chapter 5!

  91. @LC11: Yep I just mastered Hellblade on everyone precisely for that passive.

  92. Godspeed strike is ridiculously overpowered. Even more so when you equip the passive from hellblade that lets you do more than 9999 damage. I’ve hit up to around 50k damage off of one godspeed strike attack with the appropriate passives to support it.

  93. After completing the quests in Chapter V, I’m in the Crystal resting place. Now THIS feels like a final dungeon. And yet it feels all too soon! I want there to be much, much more . . . !

  94. Ah! I hope it’s just a fakeout! I’ve actually been strangely busy and haven’t been playing much at all except for bits and bites before I fall asleep, so I’m just in the first dungeon in Holograd. Looking forward to see where I fall in the scale of the Adam fight.

    Speaking of playtime/leaving the game idle, I wish I had gotten into the habit earlier of using the home button as my pause button. That way my boat picks up minutes and my clock would not erroneously read 95 hours.

  95. Crikey appears in the mid-19th century as part of the long British tradition of blasphemy-referencing slang. It was not specifically Australian, but rather a general lower- and working-class bit of slang. It is still used in Britain today (more commonly up north, I suspect), although it is (to Americans at least) often identified with Australia.

  96. I’m at Savalon. My lord this game is gorgeous. I kept the early party set up as Ethos did. Gloria as WHM fits. I’m used to the old early FF set ups Tank, DD, WHM, BLM from top to bottom. Gloria in the 2nd slot throws me off. I looked around for a reorder menu selection, didn’t see one. It’s ok, I’m fine with it. Music is top notch. VA is good but I find Elvis’ accent distracting, it sounds scottish but he uses crikey alot. I hope SN can clear this up for us

  97. Winter! There are like 40 jobs in this game! 🤣

    Another commentator said that later on the jobs will become a lot easier to master, and that is right. There’s not much reason to try and do all of that upfront, and it’s going to really bog you down because you get new jobs pretty quickly.

    I posted a comment awhile back about how easy it is to master jobs once you can start quickly killing those elite monsters that are out in the world. Don’t worry about it right now, because later on you’ll be able to master jobs in 10 minutes instead of after hours of grinding on random monsters on the beach!

  98. I finally have an update that isn’t “grinded jp at the beach fighting multiple fishes”. Well actually my update is just that, BUT! I mastered all my jobs until now for everyone and am actually ready to move the story along! 25 hours and just in chapter one. It’s probably a bit exessive even for me, but I just couldn’t stop thinking of those unmastered jobs when I did the ruin dungeon.

  99. Once you enter the very final chapter of the game two quests open up that give you four accessories that double JP/exp gain. I was able to go from level one in a job to ten in one chain battle.

    That said it is fun to hear about Winters unique play-style, It is really opposite mine which makes it interesting to read about.

  100. I know I just I don’t know couldn’t really focus on the story until it was done xD

  101. That said it’s not only bad that I’m so immersed in the gameplay in this one. I struggled a lot getting through the first Bravely and I think I did too little with the jobs and to explore them.

  102. I’m up to chapter 2 now with roughly 20 hours of playtime. Does it count towards play time if it’s on sleep? I don’t think so because I’ve done a few 12 hour expeditions with the boat for items.

    I’m enjoying the game but maybe one flaw is thats theres slightly too many sidequests. It breaks up the momentum of the game and has really slowed my progress down. Probably that’s my fault due to not finding enough time to sit down and play. I find I’m 70% doing side quests/dungeons and party chat, and 30% doing main quest and probably only have a few sessions of a few hours per week. I’ll try to up it and play more!

    Also the game seems to throw you into boss battles without too much warning. I wasn’t expecting the Gambler boss battle after doing all the card game stuff. Thankfully I beat that one first time eventually. I didn’t appreciate the first battle with Galahad though. I was trying for ages to poison him and find a way to do any sort of damage. Turns out you can’t beat that battle :/

  103. Had an amazing morning session. I love this game so much. I love that rare monsters have rare drops and that I can take them down now and don’t have to wait until after I have beaten the game to do extra stuff. Got the first rare monster rare drop today. The dagger.
    Went into the Underground water dungeon and found another rare monster. It went down easily si I think I’m heading back to see if I can take Coral Emperor too. Then farm for their rare drops.

    I also got beastmaster :) That is a job I’m excited for!

    This is definitely giving me the same type of experience I had with Xenoblade Chronicles 2. It took me 200 hours to beat maingame because I didn’t want to. Just had too much fun doing all the game offered. I didn’t really think a game would hit me in that way again. But there is so much to do all the way here.

    The underground waterway dungeon was beautiful too. I didn’t expect that. I expected sewers and they are rarely beautiful and yet developers seem to have decided they are essential xD

  104. @Berserk – Sleep mode does not count towards playtime!

    @Winter – Good point about the creative waterways. It really is gorgeous down there. Even though Gargan Roo from ff9 is a creative take on the traditional “sewer” level, it’s still pretty unremarkable to look at most of the time. And I say that you just play how you want to play! Who cares if there’s more efficient methods later, if you’re having a good time playing the way you’re playing, then keep it up! It reminds me of when I used to level up Dagger so that she could use some of her summons before she loses them. It’s completely pointless and takes forever, but I have no regrets. It was just fun to do.

  105. I love it :D Usually with playthroughs I would try to push the story to keep up, but this game is too precious to me to rush. It’s definitely not efficient, but it’s a blast :D And it’s likely the next game to give the same emotions will be XC3 and that’s probably a bit away still. Though maybe not as far as I feared <3

  106. I think I will have the time to finish BD2 this weekend, if I can stay ahead of my work. Maybe! It depends on how long it really is!

  107. I definitely have that feeling of not wanting my play-through of BD2 to end. I think I’m right before the final dungeon but I am going around trying to make sure I’ve done every piece of content possible. I’ve found a few quests in tricky places like the ends of dungeons and obscure places on the map.

  108. Wow!

    Finishing up mastering beastmaster while watching tv tonight and actually found two more quests in the first city! Quest 12 and 14 I think. I should have kept count lol.

  109. Also you cannot steal rare items at all unless you have the requisite THF passive equipped. It does not increase steal chance either.

    Thief is one of my disappointments with BD2. They really crippled the steal command. 😕

  110. Mug is a passive: it has to be equipped for you to use it, even when you have the job selected and are mastered.

    I would say that the steal success rate is significantly lower than that in Final Fantasy IX. I had a very fast character, Adelle, with a very high aim rate as well, and she struggled to steal anything even from monsters well below the party level. I would use 4 BP per round to steal, and I would be lucky if it worked once per combat, let alone get the rare items.

    Thief is still her sub job even here at the end of the game, but because of Godhand strike, and not because I’m interested in stealing items.

  111. It feels like an upcoming bossfight here. Fingers crossed it’s the Thief Asterisk so I can begin to fill out the steals in Monster Lore.

  112. The steal rate is abysmally low in this game even with Thief Gloves equipped (15% success boost). Your best bet is to learn Mug and just hope that you get things that way because trying to do it with the steal command is really poor.

  113. Learn mug don’t you learn all abilities when you master a job or does it not have anything to do with the job? Is it even lower than the rate in FFIX? Anyways makes for a good companion to tv shows.

  114. I guess I will just have to be patient then. Will have mug equipped. Everything is below my level now I think except rare monsters in the area I’m in. Will see if that makes any difference. If not patience it is! I’m in no hurry really I just want to gradually fill out the bestiary.

  115. Yes! That’s the second specialty of the shadow job. I hadn’t considered trying it with Thief, although that is my shadow sub job, so I’ll try it out when I get home and see if it works.

    I know that it works with the steal BP ability of the Thief class, because that always works now. But, that has a percentage in the description, it’s 50%, and the normal steal command does not.

    Will report back once I’ve tested a few things, including whether that shadow specialty works with the mug passive.

  116. I think if you use the Freelancer ability to increase luck you can be more successful stealing and capturing monsters. There is also a job much later in the game that has 2nd specialty that guarantees that any ability effect with a percentage chance of occurring will be triggered. So I think you can get guaranteed steals and ailment infliction off of it.

  117. I don’t think it’s too bad really. I got both items from the first rare monster and from a few random enemies before battery ran down again. I guess I might compare with farming mmo drops and be a bit too lenient lol. Have all four chars set to thief and use lucky charm to increase and have mug and the other thief ability that was useful.

  118. So I’ve done some testing and the results are not going to make anyone happy.

    The Shadow 2nd specialty (Guaranteed Results: guarantees an ability with a percentage effect to trigger at a cost of 40mp) doesn’t work on Steal. I was using my mastered Shadow with Thief subjob and Steal was still almost always unsuccessful.
    Guaranteed Results also doesn’t guarantee that Mug (sometimes when you attack you will try to steal as well) will (a) trigger or (b) be successful when it does trigger. Sometimes Adelle used Mug, and sometimes not. Sometimes Mug stole an item, and sometimes not.
    However, Guaranteed Results may have had an effect on Magpie (25% to steal rare item when stealing), guaranteeing that IF Steal is successful, THEN the 25% chance to steal the rare item becomes a 100% chance. So if you want rare items and only rare items, that may be useful.

    Don’t forget that you can use Mug with Magpie. Then, your attacks that (1) trigger Mug and then (2) successfully Steal will then (3) have a 25% chance to steal a rare item (or maybe 100% if you have Guaranteed Results). But the chance to trigger Mug won’t be affected, nor will the success rate of Steal.

    Unfortunately the only way to increase the rate of Steal success still seems to be Thief Gloves (15% boost).

    Hopefully this helps someone!

  119. Guaranteed Results does work on some things. I’m not suggesting it doesn’t. In fact it seems to make Magpie work 100% of the time when Stealing is successful, but it absolutely doesn’t guarantee that Stealing will be successful, or that Mug will trigger. You’re welcome to try it yourself.

    I think this is because Guaranteed Results only works on abilities that have a flat percentage to trigger/activate. Steal and Mug trigger based on character stats, not on a flat percentage like Magpie or (apparently) Status Infliction.

    That’s probably why Luck+ boosts the success of Steal–that stat is probably key to the success rate.

  120. I tried out stealing with abilities and specialties that increase luck like the 2nd gambler specialty and it seemed to increase chances of stealing. That said I have no hard proof of this, it just seemed like it was succeeding more often.

    I tried out a lot of different ailment inducing moves with guaranteed results and as long as the enemies were not immune they seemed to activate the specialty and work 100% of the time.

  121. Credits rolling.

    I sort of saw that ending hinted at a few points, but still…

    I understand there’s an extensive post-game, so I’m hoping this is a DQXI-esque thing!

    Also, did anyone else notice the Soul of Thamasa (attack magic boost) item? I appreciate the FF6 reference!

  122. ‘The party recover the crystals.’ YOU ARE KIDDING ME I SPENT HOURS PUTTING THEM THERE AND THEN IT JUST SAYS ‘lol nvm’

  123. And I can now confirm that the Job Limit can be lifted!

    There are ‘trials’ for each job (those stone archways) which once defeated raise the level cap to 15 and make new super abilities possible: e.g. Freelancer (which job upgrade you get for free) has a new passive ability ‘doubles the potential effects of all stat boosts received’.

  124. It’s not really finished–the credits are a sort of misdirection because you could leave the story there but I don’t think anyone would (like in DQXI). When you load up the save file, the game continues.

    Everything is still there, which makes sense because there were still lots of blanks. Also the old monsters (the game says) are now ‘different’ in the trial dungeons. So they may have new entries, but I’m not sure.

    Loads of new quests are available as well.

    (I haven’t seen Dag and Selene for a long time. I hope they are all right.)

  125. Congrats on finishing!! :D

    Do you still have your entries in the monster book/items/gear or do they reset?

  126. Thank heavens! They were a delight but, after a couple little catch up quests where I saw them moving along and developing, they disappeared from the story. I’m glad the devs didn’t forget about them! Hopefully, Orpheus, too… 😏

  127. Dag and Selene are definitely still alright. Their quest chain continues past ending one.

    I think you are right about what guaranteed results affects.

    I found Freelancers mimic to be real useful. It really lowered my MP use by a lot. That and the Beastmaster level 14 passive that increases physical attack by 50% if you use 3 or more BP in the same turn.

  128. @Winter: No, I mean it’s like in DQXI where the game ‘ends’ somewhat wistfully, but you can then load up your save and continue the story and do things differently so the plot goes in another direction.

  129. There is no option for new game plus at the first “ending” when the credits roll. That’s probably only after the true second “ending” of the game. But I’m not there, so I can’t confirm or deny it yet.

    It’s like DQXI: The storyline ends, and you save the world, but it’s not the happiest possible ending. And then when you load up your save file, your party has the option to do things differently – but that substantially extends the game, just like in DQXI where you go back in time and prevent all the bad things happening, leading to an extra third of the game

  130. Will do! If people say they are playing new game plus, then I would assume there is.

    I forgot to scan Dag the first time, so I would also like the chance to fix that!.

  131. Do I meet Dag again as a boss? I hope so because apparently I didn’t examine him!! Urk!

    Does that mean that there isn’t a new game plus then but rather postgame?

  132. Hmm. People says it has a new game plus that even carries over bestiary on message boards. That’s odd. Wondering if I have locked myself out of a 100% bestiary.

  133. That means I probably haven’t locked myself out then. Would suck to fill out everything and have that questionmark standing lol.

    Please let me know when you finish postgame if there is a NG + :)

  134. Such things bugs me to no end if a game grabs me enough to do everything. Which is rarely really. But to restart now isn’t tempting either. I’m almost 40 hours now. Still in chapter 1, but mastered everything so far and quite a bit done on beastiary and drowning in money.

    Having more fun with this game than I have had since XC2 and the summer I spent 120 hours 100% Final Fantasy I. This reminds me of that a lot. Strange how some games grab hold of us like that and some doesn’t. I can’t really say why this is different from many other great rpgs.

  135. Tactics Ogre did that to me. It became a obsession. Complete all paths, gather all named characters, get all the classmarks, fill in the Warren Report, and finish the two post game dungeons. I would like to say it’s my favorite game of all time. I think it came at a right time for me. That’s a story for later

  136. I’m about 25 hours in and in Wiswald woods and have hit a bit of a difficulty spike somehow. I’ve managed to master freelancer on everyone so far, and working on my next jobs.

    Oh, previously when I went all casters it was more tailored to that specific boss, because I think she countered physical attacks with the Sandworm attack. Normally I have a balance of Tank, healer, magical DPS and Physical DPS. But I’ve found it’s quite inconsistent to get good damage going against enemies.

    I’m now quite stumped by the mushroom enemies in the forest as they drain your MP and counter with spore to summon new enemies. I usually end up finishing battles scraping through with no MP. So I’m considering going to all melee fighters for this dungeon until I see what the boss is going to do.

    Quick question, when you have a choice in Wiswald to go to the forest or magical institute does that lead to different asterisks that you might be able to get the corresponding one of later? Like in the previous Bravely games?

    You guys are so far! Loving reading your comments to see how much there is to this game.

    Also really sad to hear about the website closing down! It’s been great content over the years! I’ve listened in since the old days of and always enjoyed it! I’ll try to be more active on the discord with you guys

  137. Caspius is right. Life comes at you sometimes and things change. Recently my life changed, where i couldn’t listen to the podcasts as much as I’d like. I like to think readership is staying steady, but not growing. I found the site by looking for reviews on Star Control 2. I’m sure the site never reviewed it, but I stayed here anyway. I read the majority of the news, reviews, and listened to the podcasts since about ep 250. I wish I had engaged with the site before these last 2 years. I mean I was a reader since 2012, thats 6 years before engaging with the site. I’m sorry I didn’t before then. Discord is where most of the engagements is now with most communities nowdays. Sites like TSM and old school forums are fading away. It happens to them all. I frequent Gamefaqs and The Scholars(Rot3k) still. I know the site closing is still off some but it feels like the end.

  138. @Berserk: You have to do both paths, one after the other, so it doesn’t really matter which you do. If you go to the Institute, as soon as you’re done you’ll have to go to the Forest, or vice versa. I was worried, too!

  139. @Jack: That’s about right. We have had a stable core readership for a long time now, but not a lot of new readers. These days, new readers in video game media don’t really seem to come to ‘websites’ as such: they’re all invested in glitzy (but often pretty unsubstantial) streaming ‘entertainment’ more than reporting or analysis.

    That’s why I think focusing on what our readers really like (like this playthrough: over 150 comments already!) is best for everyone, without the need to keep maintaining a site that is less and less the best sort of venue for the conversations we want to have. This thread is fine, but wouldn’t a chatroom/conversation be easier to manage? Now that Discord allows threaded replies(!) in-chat, it looks extremely promising.

    In addition, the Discord channel costs nothing to operate and people can ‘boost’ it with their Nitro subscriptions at no cost to them. It has built in streaming for both video and audio, and that means that we can do some of the things we most enjoy doing (podcasting and streaming games on occasion) without having to engage in the really time-consuming and clunky work that is necessary to set that up for the website. In turn, that means we can do MORE of those things, because there’s less logistical time needed to arrange them.

    I’m really optimistic about the move to Discord (which will be happening in stages). Paradoxically, it should give us more freedom to do the kind of content we enjoy because it will require less working time in order to make those things possible. Please, stay tuned!

  140. I’ve finally gotten back to it!

    Part of my delay this time was the fact that my partner tried out the game. She has limited experience with JRPGs so I wasn’t sure how she was going to like it, but she’s just finished up the Bernard fight and going strong.

    Meanwhile I laid waste to Adam with no trouble at all. He did beat me the first time, but I went with the “kill him faster” approach and wiped him out in no time flat.

    I don’t know why I ignored the Salve-Maker for so long, Gloria is keeping my party in tip-top shape better than ever.

    On to the many sidequests of Chapter 5 now. I was relieved that I was enjoying the game just as much coming back to it after a small break.

  141. Pretty much spent all evening filling out bestiary for the ones I have encountered so far. The hardest part I have found isn’t stealing so far, but items dropped. It takes some time to get both.

  142. Oh, my gosh. It never even occurred to me that the items stolen and the items dropped might be different. What a pain!

  143. I keep getting slammed with new work, and it’s terribly frustrating. I haven’t been able to play any BD2 in days. :(

  144. They have different slots in the bestiary.

    Aw :/ Hope get some time in soon.

  145. I FINALLY have some free time for a few hours today so here’s hoping I can make some progress in Bravely Default II!

  146. I have too much going on. I’m still on chapter 1. I’m on the final stages of the move. The friend I’m taking care of is in the hospital. I’m Trying to buy new truck. Trying to clean up both places. Arghhhhh.

  147. Made it to Ending 2! Same deal as Ending 1… reloading and on to Chapter 7!

  148. Re. Collectibles, do NOT sell Oberon gems. You need 20 of them for a quest in Chapter 6. :)

  149. Good catch! I had around 55 Oberon gems when I got to that point because I was grinding on the Sprite miniboss you mentioned earlier so I didn’t even think about it.

  150. It took me about 20 minutes to get another 20 from that miniboss, so if anyone did sell them, it’s not a really big deal.

    I’ve got the last asterisk now and am just about ready for the final boss!

  151. Continued to work on my bestiary this week. Today the grizzly finally dropped the monstrous fang! It was sitting tight on those xD

    Getting close to 50 hours now!! Insane! Still having so much fun. I’m close to having filled out beastiary so far, but still a little ways to go on item drops.

  152. THE END!
    Final party was L.72 and the final boss was really, really easy, even though I didn’t so any of the Halls of Tribulations.

    Final Party:
    Seth: Vanguard/Bravebearer
    Defensive Offence, Unshakeable Will, Sub-Job Specialty 2, Fast Hands, Surpassing Power

    Gloria: Spiritmaster/WhiteMage
    Magic Critical, Revenge, Solar-Powered, Lunar-Powered, Sub-Job Specialty 2

    Elvis: RedMage/Oracle
    Magic Critical, Revenge, Solar-Powered, Lunar-Powered, Sub-Job Specialty 1

    Adelle: Shadow/Thief
    Critical Amp, Dual Wield, Thrust and Parry, Surpassing Power, Revenge

    I loved the last boss fight and the ending. I’m not ashamed to say I shed a few tears–I want there to be more! Luckily there’s a NG+!

    What a GREAT game! Top fav!

  153. Yes. After you beat the final boss and watch the Ending 3 credits roll, you end up back at the game menu, and there is a new option called “continue”.

    After you continue, you watch a short additional ending cut scene, and then you can save a clear file. You are then notified that new game + is available, and you can create a new game + file from the main menu.

  154. Thank you!! It’s one thing reading it, but it’s good to have it confirmed from someone you know who has played it.

  155. The final boss really is very easy. I thought there would be another phase but no. I ended up doing the fight again just so I could listen to the entirety of the final boss song. The fight was still really enjoyable and I loved the events within the final boss fight and the ending.

  156. My time with the game has been slowing down to a crawl now unfortunately.
    I’m still on chapter 2 and about to go into the hidden studio in Wiswald after having beaten the three guys for Ranger, Red Mage and Shieldmaster.
    I’ve been busy in real life with work and viewing houses. And Monster Hunter Rise just released so I’ve been playing a lot of that.

    My progress is about 35 hours in, and my levels are about lv31-35. I’ve not been trying to master everything, but I’ve been looking for major skills to work towards. Godspeed Strike and the Beastmaster normal attacks hit all enemies are two really strong skills so I’m trying to get them on most of my chars. Thief is mastered on everyone after figuring out the rare enemy grinding. Once you get their rare drops you can equip them on your guys and make the process much easier the more you do it. I found having 8 main gauches a good logical stopping point for grinding the first flower rare enemy. (Enough to have everyone dual wielding them) The Defenders didn’t seem to drop so readily from the next one. Maybe I didn’t get so lucky.
    Looking to progress the story. I find now that I have a good few damaging skills I can make more progress quickly. I don’t think I’ll manage to finish the game during the playthrough, but it’s been fun! I’ll attempt it! I managed to 100% complete FFIX a bit late after the previous playthrough. Does Bravely Default II look quite difficult to 100% complete? Without spoiling too much. Worrying that the bestiary, card binder and side quests will be a big headache to keep track of if any are missed

  157. I don’t know that I would say BD2 looks difficult to 100% complete, but it looks VERY time-consuming. There are hundreds and hundreds of monsters, each with separate steal common/rare and drop common/rare items if you desire that data (although simply scanning monsters for the bestiary entries is not so bad). If you miss a missable boss or NPC, you will have to restart the game in New Game+ in order to get it.

    I completed all 100 side quests on my first playthrough and didn’t find that to be too onerous, in fact.

    As for the card binder, I’m not even getting into that. Nooooooope!

  158. Difficult no. Time consuming yes. And I’m all here for it :D

    Steal seems not an issue. All mine are freelancers (now about level 40, but I don’t think that has inpacted stealing) all with thief sub class. Been working on Bestiary and always get everything stolen in one battle. Just lucky charm every one and go crazy with brave and steal. It’s the item drops that are time consuming I believe. Swordsman sure isn’t letting go of that sword easily xD

    In chapter 1 still, lacking swordsman, vishno and wiki-wini only for the monsters so far in the game. 55 hours. I have found using the treats helps. You fight multiples in a row and it has dropped faster.

    Does Bernards Mansion become unavailable? I might leave Swordsman and come back daily for a grind. Eventually it will drop.

    Can’t believe this playthrough is coming to an end soon!! The play asia thing with SaGa Frontier is bugging me a bit. I’m going to have to double dip probably. oh well.

  159. Wait… card binder?? There is a cardgame and collectible cards with it? See ya all in 300 hours xD

  160. It’s been a double-edged sword that my partner is so into the game! I love to have somebody to share it with, but it means that my time with it has been limited. Just finished up Chapter 5 sidequests last night and made my way to the dungeon which I will assume will lead to the first ending. It’s still so easy to slip into it. The pacing of the jobs really does keep the cycle fresh. This is one game I’m not worried about not completing.

  161. It’s Saturday!!! Dang I missed so many things today. Vacationmode makes all days the same.

    Anyways since last week I have gotten Gambler job. Mastering it now. Actually entered chapter 2 so that’s something lol. Having a blast. 70 hours now and incredibly hard to put down! I just think I’m going to play ten minutes and before I know it it’s an hour and a half xD Still filling out bestiary. Latest crazyness is getting 99 of everything. No idea why. It looks pretty though xD

    Oh and the card game… oh the card game… It reminds me of Othello and I love it!

  162. @Winter: You just missed out on getting your update on the podcast! XD

  163. Also, the weapons stay in your weapon log in the encyclopaedia, even if you sell them. So you don’t need to have everything in your inventory! As long as you get it once, it’ll be in the log.

  164. I know it stays in the log. I want the pleasure of seeing 99 of everything all the way down lol.

  165. Saturdays lately… xD

    Well not too much different. Just been farming rare monsters and buying items and filling out bestiary xD Party is around 60 now 😊

  166. Today is the LAST day of our Bravely Default II playthrough! Comments will not be closed immediately, but this post will be removed from the feature banner as we move on to our SAGA FRONTIER playthrough.

    Post your final updates below! 😄

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