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Trials of Mana - Black Rabite Guide (Strategy and Tactics)

Written by Fruits Chinpo Samurai   /   Apr 27, 2020    


Guide on fighting, and beating, the Black Rabite on Hard (with analysis of each character's abilities).

Introduction



The Black Rabite is an optional boss that you can encounter toward the end of the final dungeon prior to the last boss fight (which dungeon depends on who your main character is). This is a difficult fight, and the game warns you with two prompts before you fight it, allowing you to turn back and set up correctly before facing this cute and dangerous critter.

If you're familiar with the original, fan-translated Seiken Densetsu 3 for the SNES, you may find that the Black Rabite is a bit easier in this game in most regards (doesn't directly heal itself and doesn't counter your spells / Class Strikes with lots of damage), although it is now healed by both Dark and Light elements (so don't think that having Lumina Saber is going to help here).

In my playthrough, I had Hawkeye (Ninja Master), Riesz (Starlancer), and Charlotte (Sage) and handily beat the Black Rabite on Hard, but I will fill in information about other characters and classes as I play more / do more research. I'm referencing the guides by Panda-senpai for information on the characters / classes I haven't played.

Some notes for reading this guide:

  • I'll abbreviate Black Rabite to BR from here on.
  • When I reference a character's ability, I will usually say [Ability Name] ([Stat] [training points needed]). For instance, Duran has Provoke (LUCK 4).
  • I'll use the term "Focus character" to refer to a primary damage dealer, who you'll control in this fight, and "Support character" to refer to an AI-controlled party member, who's duty is to keep you alive.

Where to Find the Black Rabite



BR is located near the next-to-final boss of each storyline, in the final dungeon. If you missed him on your playthrough, don't fret, as you can go back and fight him at any point.

For the Hawk/Riesz playthrough, you'll find BR in Dark Castle.



For the Duran/Angela playthrough, wait till I get there to see the screenshot.

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For the Kevin/Charlotte playthrough, wait till I get there to see the screenshot.

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After beating the final dungeon, you'll find a rabite statue at the entrance to the dungeon that will teleport you right in front of the BR fight.

For Hawk/Riesz, take Flammie to the Night Cavern, and you'll see this:



For the Duran/Angela playthrough, wait till I get there to see the screenshot.

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For the Kevin/Charlotte playthrough, wait till I get there to see the screenshot.

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Tactics



Helpful Tips:

  • Prevent BR from completing channeled spells.
  • Avoid Jumbonk, Dark Force, Dark Rain, and Stone Cloud, which will likely kill / petrify you. The other attacks hurt, but these are the most dangerous ones.
  • Remove Dark Saber (Stardust Herb or another Saber spell) from your attacker(s).
  • Kill the summoned demons.
  • Survive while whittling down BR's health.
  • Get behind BR and attack with crits.
  • You can use Class Strikes, Riesz's summons, and Angela's non-elemental spells to become invulnerable through BR's attacks for a short period.
  • Be sure to lock on (click with the right joystick) to BR to keep track of him as he teleports and jumps around.

Whenever BR starts channeling one of his three spells (you can tell because one to four channeling nodes will appear with purple health bars), prioritize destroying each of the nodes over anything else.

The first channeled spell isn't too painful. You still want to get rid of it if possible, but it isn't likely to kill you from full health.

The second channeled spell (the giant moon) is the most dangerous, and will leave your party with less than 20 health (it seems to ignore defenses). If BR follows this up with Eye Beam, it could be a full party wipe.

The third channeled spell doesn't seem to do that much damage itself (perhaps the damage lowers based on the number of nodes you manage to kill), but the four nodes are miniature BRs that can use several of his attacks (like the dangerous Jumbonk). Be wary of that as you kill them.



If there's a demon, kill it so you don't have the extra source of damage causing mayhem for the AI. There's enough time between summons that you probably won't encounter multiple demons at once, but it is possible.

Barrage Sting leaves a long, damaging vine that can stagger you if you walk through it. Note that it gets cast from both BR and his demons.



Dark Force and Black Rain both hit multiple times in large AoEs. If you're targeted, keep moving around until you see the aiming circle stop following you, then immediately dodge.



Jumbonk is likely his hardest-hitting attack. Fully buffed, overhealed, and in my 4th class, I was still getting 1-shot by this.



Stone Cloud is dangerous because it can petrify you, rather than because of the damage it deals. He seems to cast this immediately after Lava Wave a lot.



Evil Gate deals some damage, but not a threatening amount. Just be sure to dodge or use a CS, and take advantage of the fact that BR momentarily stops moving around during the attack.



Endless Chomp deals minor damage, so you should be safe to risk attacking BR if he's trying to munch on your allies - you might get hit, but it won't kill you. Don't bother using a CS to dodge this.



Eye Beam doesn't do much damage, but it will hit the entire field. Make sure to jump (use your weak attacks in the air to prolong your jump if you're having trouble timing it) or use a CS to dodge.



Lava Wave deals some damage and can burn you, which limits your vision - which can range from annoying to deadly, depending on how well you can read his attacks. The lava left over deals some damage, but doesn't seem to stagger you.



Lucent Beam is a series of 3 back-to-back line attacks. If he's targeting one of your allies, you can freely attack him. If he's targeting you, make sure to dodge all three attacks.



Psychic Blast and Supersonic deal some damage in an area, but you should have time to just run out of it.



  • During the fight, BR will periodically transition between Normal, Hard, and Spell mode.
  • Hard Mode gives him Armor, Attack Up, and Defense Up.
  • Spell Mode gives him Magic Atk/Def Up.
  • I don't think that Normal mode does anything.

Beyond those tips, I think that most of the difficulty in this fight lies in preparing a proper strategy - for that, look at the sections for each character to see what abilities are useful, and what roles they can fill in your party.

General Strategy / Abilities / Items



The biggest problem in my first few fights against BR was the fact that the AI cannot seem to both attack and avoid BR's attacks.

Eventually, I realized that if you set the AI's Tactics (on the Strategy page) to "Exclusively Protect", they were much better at surviving while still using certain support moves (stat boosts, Healing Light, and Twinkle Rain).

Also, since the AI's survival increased so much once they stopped attacking, I used Enigma (Hawk LUCK 2) on my Focus so that I wouldn't have to spend as much time dodging attacks that weren't directed at me. Other abilities, like Guard (Duran L-L STA 27) could function similarly to refocus attention onto particular party members.

If you're running a party with several characters who could fill either the Focus (primary DPS) or Support role (such as Light Duran and Light Kevin), and will be switching characters based as the other passively fills up CS gauge, make sure to set all 3 part member's AI to "Exclusively Protect".

In general, you want to pick abilities that A) increase healing, B) increase defenses, C) refill your Focus's CS gauge, and D) increase your Focus's damage.

I found that I was typically able to avoid the worst spells (like Black Rain), but that the AIs would still occasionally get stuck and die, so give your supports the accessories to halve Light and Dark damage. I think Black Rain and Evil Gate are more likely to kill a support than Flash or Light Beam, so give the Dark accessory to your primary healer.

Useful Items (note that some are replicated by spells, so you don't need them if you have access to the spell):

  • Chocolate / Honey Elixer / Poto Oil - for healing in a pinch. If you have Healing Light+ on a Support, you probably only need to devote one or two item slots for this.
  • Faerie Walnut - to restore MP.
  • Medical Herb / Marmpoto Oil - for removing Burn, Moogle, Shrink, and Petrification. If your party has Twinkle Light+, you probably just want the Marmpoto Oil.
  • Stardust Herb - to remove Dark Saber (which makes your attacks heal BR). Since BR either resits, ignores, or absorbs all elements, you don't want to be forced to resort to an elemental saber to continue dealing damage.
  • Moon Coin (?) - I don't have a way to tell if moon coins actually work on BR, but if they do, then being able to decrease his max HP will be helpful in shortening the fight.
  • Chobin Oil / Ton Oil / Dryad Icon - Various support items to increase your survivability.
  • Tezla Oil - Increases the rate at which your CS gauge fills, which can be helpful if you don't have a set of abilities to do that for you.
  • Shadow Eye or Bee Eye + Ghost Eye + Batmo Eye - lower BR's stats to both deal more damage and take less. These will expire over time, and BR occasionally buffs himself during his mode transitions, so make sure you have a full stack (or Dark Hawk).
  • Bulette Scale + Sahagin Chip + Drake Scale - Increase your team's offense and defense. You'll likely have to apply these several times during the fight, which makes Light Riesz a much more appealing option.

Duran Light-Light (Paladin)



Light-Light (Paladin):

  • His Locked Ability reduces Light/Dark damage taken (although I'm not sure if that only applies to him, or if it applies to the whole party), which appear to be the main elements that I took damage from BR.
  • Between access to a shield and high STA and SPRT, he can probably tank enough hits that you can leave the AI on a setting that actually allows him to attack, rather than just provide support.
  • Break Armor (STR 4) is a chain ability that lets your Focus get through BR's armored form, although it should be easy enough to break through normal methods.
  • Guard (STA 27) looks like it would help the party tank better if you fail to stop one of BR's channeled spells, assuming that it works for spell damage / for attacks that hit the whole party. If it does work the way I think, then it would make him a great Support - between Guard and Provoke (LUCK 4), most of the damage should be coming his way. That should make up somewhat for the fact that the Paladin only has single-targeting Healing Light.
  • Auto-HP Heal II (INT 21) and Heal (INT 27) are two chain abilities that can give your squishiest character more sustainability in the fight. Or him, if you're using Provoke (LUCK 4)
  • Damage CS Boost III (SPRT 27) can help some to fill his CS gauge, particularly if you're running a party with two Focus/Support hybrids that you swap between during the fight, as it lets his gauge fill even if he's not attacking.
  • Lucky Break (LUCK 2) should help you avoid stunlocks from certain dangerous spells, to either keep on fighting or (for the AI) to keep healing.
  • Survive (LUCK 12) is a chain ability to help out your squishiest character. Or him, if you have him set to attack and give him Provoke.
  • Cure (LUCK 27) is one of the many abilities in the game that I don’t trust the listed description of. I think that it would only cure status ailments on Duran when he heals, not on the character he actually heals (based on some experimentation with Safeguard (Charlotte Light LUCK 9) that showed that it only removes her stat debuffs). (Could someone confirm or deny this?)
  • Miracle (LUCK 27) will help to keep Duran alive in some of the nastier situations, as long as you're able to keep his HP moderately topped off.

Focus Rating: 7/10 - He's Duran, he bashes things in the face with a sword.

Support Rating: 7/10 – Guard + Provoke + Heal + Lucky Break + Survive + Miracle allow him to both draw aggro away from your Focus (enabling easier crits from back attacks), and Healing Light gives him something to do beyond just dodge all day.

Final Thoughts: The Paladin is the perfect image of a hybrid Focus/Support. Pair him with another hybrid Focus/Support and you can swap between the two as their CS gauges fill from their passive abilities.

As I said above, he should be able to shrug off a fair amount of abuse, so the AI should be able to fight as him pretty decently.

Compared to the Lord (a very similar class), the Paladin’s main draws are Guard, Heal, and Miracle, which effectively reduces the total damage taken by allies, and allows single-target heals to be worthwhile.

It looks like it would work well when paired with Charlotte (Recovery Break (INT 21) also effectively increases the party’s max HP), one of Kevin’s Light classes (which can also heal), and/or Ton Oils or whichever of Hawkeye’s Light classes gets the spell to increase max HP).

Duran Light-Dark (Lord)



Light-Dark (Liege/Lord):

  • His Locked Ability increases healing, which can make him a primary healer, particularly with Healing Light+ and Twinkle Rain. Additionally, Heal Upgrade (INT 27) helps him survive (from the description, I think it only applies to healing he receives, not how much he heals others).
  • Between access to a shield and high STA and SPRT, he can probably tank enough hits that you can leave the AI on a setting that actually allows him to attack, rather than just provide support - and while he does trade some of the Paladin's defenses for more attack, I think the Lord should be able to stand his own ground as the AI.
  • Break Armor (STR 4) is a chain ability that lets your Focus get through BR's armored form, although it should be easy enough to break through normal methods.
  • Attack Boost All II (STR 21) and Defense Boost All (STA 27) help your whole party.
  • Heal CS Boost II (SPRT 27) can help some to fill his CS gauge, particularly if you're running a party with two Focus/Support hybrids that you swap between during the fight, as it lets his gauge fill even if he's not attacking.
  • Provoke (LUCK 4) lets him draw aggro to himself, enabling crits from your Focus. As I said above, he’s got enough tankiness that he should be able to take that while still attacking and be golden.
  • Lucky Break (LUCK 2) should help you avoid stunlocks from certain dangerous spells, to either keep on fighting or (for the AI) to keep healing.
  • Survive (LUCK 12) is a chain ability to help out your squishiest character. Or him, if you have him set to attack and give him Provoke.
  • Critical Smash II (LUCK 21) is a chain ability that gives some debuffs to your main Focus’s crits (which shouldn’t be him, because he’s well suited to using Guard to draw aggro). Sadly, its spell damage that is the bigger issue with BR (except for his body slam, but that’s likely to 1-hit KO you regardless), but he does have some attacks that this helps with.
  • Cure (LUCK 27) is one of the many abilities in the game that I don’t trust the listed description of. I think that it would only cure status ailments on Duran when he heals, not on the entire party (based on some experimentation with Safeguard (Charlotte Light LUCK 9) that showed that it only removes her stat debuffs). 

Focus Rating: 7.5/10 - He's Duran, he bashes things in the face with a sword, but doesn't have anything fancy to contribute. Slightly stronger than the Paladin.

Support Rating: 9/10 – Provoke + Lucky Break + Survive + Attack Boost All II + Defense Boost ALL + Heal Upgrade allow him to both draw aggro away from your Focus (enabling easier crits from back attacks), and Healing Light+ and Twinkle Rain make him a full healer, while Critical Smash II can be put on another character to provide some debuffs to crits.

Final Thoughts: The Lord is the perfect image of a hybrid Focus/Support. Pair him with another hybrid Focus/Support and you can swap between the two as their CS gauges fill from their passive abilities.

As I said above, he should be able to shrug off a fair amount of abuse, so the AI should be able to fight as him pretty decently.

Compared to the Paladin, the Lord’s main draws are Healing Light+, Twinkle Rain, Attack Boost ALL II, and Defense Boost ALL. It looks like the Lord could either serve as your only needed healer (with fewer synergies than the Paladin has) alongside a pure Focus or a hybrid Focus/Support.

Duran Dark-Dark (Swordmaster)



Dark-Light (Edelfrei / Swordmaster):

  • His locked ability says "Weapon efficiency increased by 15%", which sounds like it simply makes him deal more damage with attacks. Helpful!
  • He gets Stone/Lightning/Ice/Flame Saber+, which you can use to overwrite Dark saber when BR casts it on you (for 50% damage, instead of -100%) if you don't want to use / run out of Stardust Herbs. He also has Leaf and Moon Saber, which aren't useful vs BR (he's immune), but maybe they're worth it against the summoned demons? (Probably not)
  • Counter (STR 2) helps him fill the Focus role better.
  • Break Armor (STR 4) is a chain ability that lets your Focus get through BR's armored form, although it should be easy enough to break through normal methods.
  • Lucky Break (LUCK 2) should help you avoid stunlocks from certain dangerous spells to keep on fighting.
  • Provoke (LUCK 4) is helpful if you want a second Focus to deal more crits, but Duran’s Dark classes might not have the defenses to take the hits this will cause while still fighting. It works much better on his Light classes.
  • Guard Saber (INT 12) is a chain ability with a confusing description (“Opponent’s saber magic and corresponding elemental damage decreased by 15%”). Does that mean that the character with this ability takes 15% less elemental damage (from spells and sabers)? Does it mean that the entire party gets that benefit? Does it only reduce spell damage taken if the enemy has a saber cast on them? (Could someone provide some info on what this actually does?)
  • Attack Saber (STR 9) and Attack Saber II (STR 21) offset the penalty of using his elemental sabers to overwrite Dark saber when BR casts it on him, but I think you'll still be doing a little less than full damage (just Attack Saber II makes you do about 75% of normal damage, I haven't tested with both). Fraction (INT 21) is a chain ability that has to do something, and the description ("Damage to enemy with moderate Elemental Resistance increased by 150%") makes it sound like it increases elemental damage to either neutral targets (in which case, it's not helpful here) or resistant targets (like BR). If it works with resistant targets, then these three ability combined should give something like +20% to +50% damage with an elemental saber, compared to normal attacks. (Could someone let me know if they figure out what this actually does?)
  • Concentrate (LUCK 21) and Flourish (LUCK 27) can help his damage. But since you still need to hit the target from behind to get a crit (could someone correct me if I'm wrong on this?), these are only moderate damage buffs. Since Flourish is a Chain ability, it could work if you had a second Focus to take advantage of the increased crit rate provided by Provoke on Duran.
  • Offensive Stance (STR 27) is either really good or really bad, depending on a variety of factors that I'd have to test with to determine (Does it lower just DEF, or also MDEF? Can he still survive a hit from various spells with this on?, etc)
  • Broken Lines (LUCK 9) helps up your damage if you don’t have Dark Riesz / Dark Hawkeye / the correct item to cause a Defense debuff.

Focus Rating: 8.5/10 to 10/10 - He's Duran, he bashes things in the face with a sword. He doesn’t have enough ways to fill his CS gauge or quickly eliminate summoned demons for me to rank him at a 9 (see the notes below about potential things that might change that).

Support Rating: 0/10 to 7/10 – There are enough factors about the Swordmaster that I’m not confident on the workings of that you’ll need to read my caveats below.

*Note: His Support Rating might be higher (+5/10 or so) if the combination of Attack Saber I & II + Fraction actually increases damage dealt above base damage. That would also increase his Focus Rating by +1/10, as it would allow him to constantly have Ice Saber up to quickly cut down the demons.

*Note: His Support Rating might be higher if Guard Saber works to protect one character (+1/10) or the whole party (+2/10) against BR’s spells.

*Note: His Focus Rating would be higher (+0.5/10) if Offensive Stance gives him enough of a boost in physical damage (without making him too flimsy) to make a noticeable difference in the fight.

Final Thoughts: His ratings fluctuate a lot, based on how little I currently understand about how the Swordmaster’s abilities work. Hopefully, someone can fill in some gaps.

Compared to the Duelist, the Swordmaster’s main draws for the BR fight are (assuming the Attack Saber I & II + Fraction combo works well) the ability to use elemental sabers for increased damage. It doesn’t appear that BR puts Dark Saber on your whole team, so the difference between Swordmaster’s multi-target and the Duelist’s single-target versions doesn’t seem particularly relevant.

Pairing the Swordmaster with Dark Hawkeye lets Hawkeye take advantage of Duran’s Provoke and Enigma (LUCK 2) + Flourish to get easy, high-damage crits. Hawkeye fills the gaps in the Swordmaster’s worst-case suite by using Water Diversion to kill the demons in 2 casts (which comes out pretty fast), and debuffing BR the whole fight.

If the Swordmaster’s full support suite works, then pairing him with any Focus or hybrid Focus/Support would make the fight go by pretty dang fast.

Duran Dark-Dark (Duelist)



Dark-Dark (Duelist):

  • His Locked Ability increased his Attack after defeating an enemy, which should work nicely with the demons BR summons. It’s really good if this stacks with Attack buffs from Light Riesz / items, but still OK otherwise. The Duelist also has a higher STR than the Swordmaster, but I’m not sure who deals more damage per hit between their raw stats, Locked Abilities, and class equipment.
  • He gets Stone/Lightning/Ice/Flame Saber, which you can use to overwrite Dark saber when BR casts it on you (for 50% damage, instead of -100%) if you don't want to use / run out of Stardust Herbs.
  • Counter (STR 2) helps him fill the Focus role better.
  • Break Armor (STR 4) is a chain ability that lets your Focus get through BR's armored form, although it should be easy enough to break through normal methods.
  • Lucky Break (LUCK 2) should help you avoid stunlocks from certain dangerous spells to keep on fighting.
  • Provoke (LUCK 4) is helpful if you want a second Focus to deal more crits, but Duran’s Dark classes might not have the defenses to take the hits this will cause while still fighting. It works much better on his Light classes.
  • Guard Saber (INT 12) is a chain ability with a confusing description (“Opponent’s saber magic and corresponding elemental damage decreased by 15%”). Does that mean that the character with this ability takes 15% less elemental damage (from spells and sabers)? Does it mean that the entire party gets that benefit? Does it only reduce spell damage taken if the enemy has a saber cast on them? (Could someone provide some info on what this actually does?)
  • Attack Saber (STR 9) offsets the penalty of using a saber somewhat, but wit
  • Attack Saber (STR 9) somewhat offsets the penalty of using his elemental sabers to overwrite Dark saber when BR casts it on him, but you'll still be doing a little less than full damage (I think it comes out to about 65%, but I’ve only tested with Charlotte’s Attack Saber II (Light-either STR 27)). Fraction (INT 21) is a chain ability that has to do something, and the description ("Damage to enemy with moderate Elemental Resistance increased by 150%") makes it sound like it increases elemental damage to either neutral targets (in which case, it's not helpful here) or resistant targets (like BR). If it works with resistant targets, then these two ability combined should give something like in the range of -10% to +15% damage with an elemental saber, compared to normal attacks. (Could someone let me know if they figure out what this actually does?)
  • Broken Lines (LUCK 9) helps up your damage if you don’t have Dark Riesz / Dark Hawkeye / the correct item to cause a Defense debuff.
  • Wound (STR 21) is a risky tradeoff, but probably works in your favor if you have a good healer (or two). Assuming, of course, that there isn’t some stupid interaction with his tier 4 power attack (the basic combo you get when unlocking his 3rd class) making multiple attacks that each cost 5% of your HP. (Could anyone clarify how this works?)
  • Rage (STR 27) means that you’ll be dealing max damage by the end of the fight.
  • Victory Heal II (STA 27) gives the Duelist the ability to heal a sizeable 20% HP each time he kills a demon, which might allow you to go without a healer altogether (granted, your allies will die, but eh. Embrace the dark side.), or make up for the extra damage he’s causing himself with Wound.
  • Flourish (LUCK 21) is a chain ability that would let a second Focus to take advantage of the increased crit rate provided by Provoke on Duran. Or slap it on the Duelist (without Provoke) and try to use normal maneuvering to get crits.
  • Forsake II (LUCK 27) gives the Duelist an impressive 20% chance to take 0 damage from any source. Helpful!

Focus Rating: 9/10 – He’s Duran, he bashes things in the face with a sword. Wound and Rage might actually bump his damage up enough that he can quickly dispatch the summoned demons, (which is my criteria for a 9/10 Focus Rating), while Victory Heal II and Forsake should help make up for the extra damage he’s causing himself (alongside your government sanctioned healer, of course).

Support Rating: 1/10 to 3/10 – If Guard Saber works to reduce damage taken from BR’s spells, then he can help protect someone else a little (giving +2/10). Otherwise, having Provoke lets another Focus get some more crits, so he’s not absolutely worthless at supporting your party. Just… mostly worthless.

Final Thoughts: The Duelist looks to be a melee power-house. He’ll deal damage fine, and actually has some good self-healing / damage avoidance.

Compared to the Swordmaster, the Duelist’s main draws for the BR fight are Wound, Victory Heal II, Forsake II, and (if it works for BR’s magic) Guard Saber II on himself. Unlike the Swordmaster, there isn’t an interpretation of Attack Saber that makes it work with Fraction to be better

Pairing the Duelist with Dark Hawkeye lets Hawkeye take advantage of Duran’s Provoke and Enigma (LUCK 2) + Flourish to get easy, high-damage crits. Hawkeye fills the gaps in the Duelist’s suite by using Water Diversion to kill the demons in 2 casts (which comes out pretty fast), and debuffing BR the whole fight.

Angela Light-Light (Grand Diviner)



Light-Light (Grand Diviner):

  • Her 2nd class’s locked ability is of questionable utility in this fight, and her 3rd does nothing.
  • Magic Recoil (STR 4) give a higher chance to stun enemies with spells. I don’t know if that works on BR, but it could help with the demons.
  • Spell Guard (STA 6) makes you take less damage if you get hit while casting.
  • Cast Resist I and II (STA 12 and 27) give a combined 50% damage reduction when casting. Which might mean she takes 50% less damage from all spells, or it might mean she takes 50% less damage while she is casting. I’m not really certain.
  • Limit Break I and II (INT 4 and 27) give her a combined +30% damage (or +25% for just Limit Break II).
  • Doppelganger (INT 33) is less powerful than the Archmage’s Glitter Dust (INT 33).
  • Move MP Saver (SPRT 12) reduces her mana cost by 30%, which combines with some combination of Reclaim I and II (STR 6 and 12) to let her use power attacks to recover a lot of MP rather than relying entirely on Faerie Walnuts. Bless (LUCK 9) also works, but has diminishing returns with Move MP Saver.
  • Elemental Reduction (SPRT 27) says “Opponent’s elemental damage decreased by 20%”, which should apply to most damage you take from BR.
  • Enigma (LUCK 4) means that the enemies will target her less, giving you more time to cast spells, and an easier time getting back attacks to crit with. Offense and defense in one package! Combine with Provoke (LUCK 4) on Duran to double that effectiveness (probably).
  • Pinpoint II (LUCK 27) gives her a good crit chance, which combines with Enigma for better damage.

Focus Rating: 5/10 – She can kill the demons easily, but will likely go through a decent number of Faerie Walnuts even with all of her MP reduction abilities, or will have to spend a good chunk of time spamming power attacks just to cast more spells.

Support Rating: 4/10 to 6/10 – She doesn’t have anything to give under AI control, but you can always cast her spells from the menu while controlling your Focus character to either kill of the summoned demons, or to just aid in your BR smackdown (although that does get into a bit of a micromanagement headache). If Elemental Reduction actually reduces the damage BR does with his spells to your entire party (rather than just her), that bumps her up to a 6/10.

Final Thoughts: This is just not the class to fight BR. Anything in here that is good is done better by either the Archmage or the Magus, unless Elemental Reduction applies to the whole party. Out of the context of fighting BR, this is a good class, though. At the very least, it’ll make getting to BR pretty easy.

Compared to the Archmage, the Grand Diviner’s main draws for the BR fight are Elemental Reduction and Pinpoint II – although the extra crit chance probably won’t add up to the same amount of damage the Archmage gets from Judge (STR 27).

Angela Light-Dark (Archmage)



Light-Dark (Archmage):

  • Both her 2nd and 3rd class’s Locked Abilities aren’t particularly helpful during the fight, but will occasionally make one spell deal more damage if you’re casting spells from full MP, or give you back a chunk of MP if you almost die. If only the two abilities had any synergy…
  • Magic Recoil (STR 4) give a higher chance to stun enemies with spells. I don’t know if that works on BR, but it could help with the demons.
  • Judge (STR 27) is a chain ability that gives +20% damage to boss monsters, like BR.
  • Spell Guard (STA 6) makes you take less damage if you get hit while casting.
  • Cast Resist I and II (STA 12 and 27) give a combined 50% damage reduction when casting. Which might mean she takes 50% less damage from all spells, or it might mean she takes 50% less damage while she is casting. I’m not really certain.
  • Limit Break I and II (INT 4 and 27) give her a combined +30% damage (or +25% for just Limit Break II).
  • Glitter Dust (INT 33) deals non-elemental damage, which should actually hurt BR. It might even interrupt BR’s spells (other than the channeled spells).
  • Move MP Saver I and II (SPRT 12 and 27) reduces her mana cost by 70%, which combines with some combination of Reclaim I and II (STR 6 and 12) to let her use power attacks to recover MP rather than Faerie Walnuts, potentially letting you go into battle with a different item. Bless (LUCK 9) also works, but has diminishing returns with Move MP Saver.
  • Magic Armor (LUCK 2) gives her a 15% chance to avoid most of what BR throws at her.
  • Enigma (LUCK 4) means that the enemies will target her less, giving you more time to cast spells, and an easier time getting back attacks to crit with. Offense and defense in one package! Combine with Provoke (LUCK 4) on Duran to double that effectiveness (probably).

Focus Rating: 7/10 – She has enough MP reductions that she should actually be able to cast Glitter Dust a bunch, and can easily kill the demons with Spike Freeze (INT 21).

Support Rating: 4/10 – If you leave her on “Exclusively Protect”, you can just have her fire off a spell whenever you need to kill a demon. Otherwise, she doesn’t provide any support.

Final Thoughts: This is the most mana efficient of Angela’s classes, meaning that it should be the least headache to pilot through the fight. It’ll serve you well in getting to BR, as well. She still probably isn’t as useful as a Focus character as a Duran or Hawkeye would be.

Compared to the Grand Diviner, the main draws for the BR fight are Move MP Save II, Glitter Dust, and Judge.

Angela Dark-Light (Rune Seer)



Dark-Light (Rune Seer):

  • Her Locked Ability gives her a 30% chance to avoid status effects, which is helpful in this fight (unlike most of her other class’s Locked Abilities).
  • She doesn’t have a non-elemental spell, and I’m pretty sure that BR is immune to status effects, so you don’t have much going for you here.
  • Magic Recoil (STR 4) give a higher chance to stun enemies with spells. I don’t know if that works on BR, but it could help with the demons.
  • Cheat (STR 27) increases damage by 20% if she’s over level 87.
  • Total Resistance (STA 27) is a chain ability that makes one character immune to status effects. Give this to someone with Twinkle Rain, since she already has 30% resistance.
  • Limit Break (INT 4) increased magic damage slightly.
  • Special Effect II (INT 27) deals 40% more damage to enemies with status effects. However, BR seems to be immune to them. If he wasn’t, you’d want to combine this with something like the chain ability Toxic (Hawk INT 4) that lets you poison enemies with power attacks.
  • Magic Armor (LUCK 2) gives her a 15% chance to avoid most of what BR throws at her.
  • Enigma (LUCK 4) means that the enemies will target her less, giving you more time to cast spells, and an easier time getting back attacks to crit with. Offense and defense in one package! Combine with Provoke (LUCK 4) on Duran to double that effectiveness (probably).

Focus Rating: 2/10 – She doesn’t have any non-elemental spells, and most of her damage buffs don’t apply to BR.

Support Rating: 4/10 – If you leave her on “Exclusively Protect”, you can just have her fire off a spell whenever you need to kill a demon. Otherwise, she doesn’t provide any support.

Final Thoughts: This is just not the class to fight BR. Anything in here that is good is done better by one of her other classes.

Angela Dark-Dark (Magus)



Dark-Dark (Magus):

  • Her Locked ability increases Magic attack by 20% for a while if an ally faints, which is, again, helpful, but not proactive.
  • Magic Recoil (STR 4) give a higher chance to stun enemies with spells. I don’t know if that works on BR, but it could help with the demons.
  • Spell Resistance (STA 27) keeps you from getting stunned out of casting (most of the time).
  • Limit Break (INT 4) increased magic damage slightly.
  • Wound Magic All (INT 27) increases her spell damage by 60-90% (depending on if it counts her as an ally) for 2% of each ally’s HP. Combined with a Healing Light+ healer, that’s some decent damage.
  • Ancient Curse (INT 33) is Pwr 600, the strongest spell available to her, and is non-elemental, too.
  • Damage MP Boost (SPRT 27) recovers 2% MP when you take damage. Helpful, but it won’t replace your need for Faerie Walnuts.
  • Magic Armor I and II (LUCK 2 and 27) combine for 45% chance to ignore BR’s spells!
  • Enigma (LUCK 4) means that the enemies will target her less, giving you more time to cast spells, and an easier time getting back attacks to crit with. Offense and defense in one package! Combine with Provoke (LUCK 4) on Duran to double that effectiveness (probably).

Focus Rating: 6/10 – Her spells are going to eat a fair chunk of mana, and they’re going to hurt her a bit, but they’re the strongest of anything Angela has.

Support Rating: 4/10 - If you leave her on “Exclusively Protect”, you can just have her fire off a spell whenever you need to kill a demon (just make sure to take off Wound Magic and Wound Magic All to keep her from being an HP drain). Otherwise, she doesn’t provide any support.

Kevin (W.I.P.)



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Charlotte (W.I.P.)



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Hawkeye (W.I.P.)



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Riesz Light-Light (Vanadis)



Light-Light (Vanadis):

  • Her 2nd class’s Locked Ability gives 1% to CS gauge each time she hits with a normal attack, which is useful if she’s your Focus, but the 3rd class’s Locked Ability doesn’t help here.
  • Counter (STR 4) buffs your strength by 10% (which stacks with buff spells) for a while after you get hit, which means it should be active the whole fight.
  • Attack Boost All (STR 12) gives your party 3% increased attack, which could add up. If you’re using her as support, she probably has the slots to take advantage of this.
  • Light of Guidance (STR 27) gives +7% attack to all allies while they’re above 50% HP (or maybe while Riesz is above 50% HP, it’s not clear from the ability). Regardless of how this works, it’ll be active most of the fight, unless you’re losing badly.
  • Interception (STA 4) reduces the damage BR does when targeting the player by 5%. Probably not enough to matter, since BR’s dangerous attacks are either doing way too much damage, or are stunlocking you.
  • Light of Refuge (STA 33) gives +7% defence to all allies while they’re above 50% HP (or maye while Riesz is above 50% HP, it’s not clear from the ability). The fact that it turns off once you start taking damage makes it a little less reliable, but you should use it anyways.
  • Stat Boost (INT 9) gives 8% increased stat boosts. Since this buffs Offense and Defense for the whole party, it’s useful to have.
  • Freya (INT 21) is basically an AOE CS as a move. It’s non-elemental, which is great, and it can probably cause BR to cancel some of it’s attacks/spells, just like CS’s do.
  • Auto-HP Heal All (INT 27) restores 1% HP to each ally every 10 seconds. That sounds like such a slow recovery rate that I can’t see the point of it.
  • Payback (SPRT 4) gives you 2% CS each time you get hit. Probably not enough to matter.
  • Protection / Mental Boost / Strengthen (SPRT 9) let you buff one ally at a time. You’ll need to cast it 9 times at the start of the fight, and another 3 times each time you have to use a Stardust Herb to remove Dark Saber. That sounds terrible, but if the AI is set to “Exclusively Protect”, it’ll save you the headache of applying those buffs.
  • Damage CS Boost III (SPRT 21) gives 7% to the CS gauge each time she takes damage. That’s a good chunk, but would be better if she had Provoke (Duran LUCK 2), in order to serve as a hybrid Focus/Support you switch to in order to unleash a heavy CS every now and then.
  • Oracle (SPRT 27) increases all stats when you use a CS, which is great if she’s your focus. Or redundant, if it doesn’t stack with the normal buffs she can give.
  • Forsake (LUCK 2) ignores damage 5% of the time. More helpful than Interception.
  • Pinpoint (LUCK 4) is a chain ability that increases one character’s crit chance by 10%, which might be consistent enough with Provoke (Duran LUCK 2) and/or Enigma (Hawk/Angela LUCK 2), if you give it to the Enigma-bearer.
  • Magic Smash (LUCK 9) is a chain ability that gives crits 30% chance to reduce Magic Attack and Magic Defense. Give it to the same person as Pinpoint, and now you don’t have to worry about Sahagin Scales to lower BR’s damage potential.
  • Bountiful (LUCK 12) increases healing item’s effectiveness by 20%, which can help with Poto Oil and Chocolate if you’re relying on those rather than someone with Healing Light+.
  • Extra Potent (LUCK 21) is a chain ability that reads “Also gain the status increase effect yourself”. If it wasn’t a chain ability, I’d be confident in saying that it means that Riesz applies any buff to herself, regardless of who she casts it on. As a chain ability, I’m suddenly hesitant about what it actually does, and I don’t know if the AI would intelligently utilize this ability if you use it. (Could someone help me understand what this actually does?)
  • Random Buff (LUCK 27) reads “Randomized status effect when stat is increased with move”. I briefly played with this (on an alternate save file) and couldn’t figure out what it’s actually doing. (Could someone help me understand what this actually does?)

Focus Rating: 5/10 - She doesn't have anything in particular here that makes her a good Focus, but Magic Smash makes whoever your Focus character is better. I actually down-rated her from a 7/10 to a 5/10 simply because, as your Focus, you'd have to manually cast all of the 7 - 9 single-target buffs every so often just to keep them active, since they have an expiration timer.

Support Rating: 8/10 - She provides a lot of support from the buffs, and the AI should be pretty good about keeping them active (although you might need to toss her some Faerie Walnuts to keep her mana up).

Final Thoughts: I'm trying to think of something good to say about the Vanadis, but I can't. Everything I want from it is handled so much more elegantly in the Starlancer.

Compared to the Starlancer, the Vanadis' main draws are Damage CS Boost III, Oracle and Random Buff. If you weren't required to spend so much time casting buffs and keeping them active, this would help make the Vanadis a hybrid Focus/Support. But the combination of single-target buffs and the fact that they expire just sinks that ship.

Riesz Light-Dark (Starlancer)



Light-Dark:

  • Her 2nd class’s Locked Ability gives 1% to CS gauge each time she hits with a normal attack, which is useful if she’s your Focus. Her 3rd class’s Locked Ability makes her buffs last until you have to use a Stardust Herb, which is nice – but would be MUCH more useful on the Vanadis, and apply some kind of balance (cast 3x the spells at the start, but never have to reapply them vs being able to apply buffs quickly but needing to reapply them). It confuses me, like many other things when comparing the two classes, but I’ll stop editorializing (unless someone can give me a good reason for why this is, in which case I’ll give you lots of internet points and eat my crow – and no, I don’t think having an AOE CS is a good reason; in fact, that feels misplaced to me as well, since it implies that the Vanadis is better against multiple opponents, which would make sense to apply to the class with the speedy buff application. Ok, now I’ll stop rambling. But I shudder to think what I’ll say in the Final Thoughts below..).
  • Counter (STR 4) buffs your strength by 10% (which stacks with buff spells) for a while after you get hit, which means it should be active the whole fight.
  • Attack Boost All I & II (STR 12 and 27) gives your party a combined 10% increased attack without any preconditions, which helps your Focus do more damage. If you’re using her as support, she probably has the slots to take advantage of this.
  • Interception (STA 4) reduces the damage BR does when targeting the player by 5%. Probably not enough to matter, since BR’s dangerous attacks are either doing way too much damage, or are stunlocking you.
  • Defense Boost All (STA 27) increases all allies’ defense by 7%, without any preconditions.
  • Stat Boost (INT 9) gives 8% increased stat boosts. Since this buffs Offense and Defense for the whole party, it’s useful to have.
  • Seraph (INT 21) is basically an AOE CS as a move. It’s non-elemental, which is great, and it can probably cause BR to cancel some of it’s attacks/spells, just like CS’s do.
  • MGC Boost All (INT 27) increases your party’s magic damage by 5%. Useful if you’re casting her summon or using Angela / Hawk.
  • Payback (SPRT 4) gives you 2% CS each time you get hit. Probably not enough to matter.
  • Protection+ / Mental Boost+ / Strengthen+ (SPRT 21) are the reason you picked Light Riesz to start with. They apply to the whole party at once, and never expire – so they only need to be recast if you use a Stardust Herb to remove Dark Saber.
  • MGC DEF Boost All (SPRT 27) Increases all allies’ magic defense by 5%.
  • Forsake (LUCK 2) ignores damage 5% of the time. More helpful than Interception.
  • Pinpoint (LUCK 4) is a chain ability that increases one character’s crit chance by 10%, which might be consistent enough with Provoke (Duran LUCK 2) and/or Enigma (Hawk/Angela LUCK 2), if you give it to the Enigma-bearer.
  • Magic Smash (LUCK 9) is a chain ability that gives crits 30% chance to reduce Magic Attack and Magic Defense. Give it to the same person as Pinpoint, and now you don’t have to worry about Sahagin Scales to lower BR’s damage potential.
  • Bountiful (LUCK 12) increases healing item’s effectiveness by 20%, which can help with Poto Oil and Chocolate if you’re relying on those rather than someone with Healing Light+.
  • Good Luck (LUCK 21) has a 30% chance of a buff increasing a stat by +15%. Which is one of the many things that’s weird about this class, ‘cause you’d think the thing that happens sometimes when you cast a buff would be on the class that’s casting lots more buffs… But otherwise, sure, if you have room, use it. I don’t have any idea how to tell if it’s working or not.

Focus Rating: 7/10 – She has nothing particularly noteworthy to add here, other than her decent attack (particularly once buffed). She isn’t tough enough to let the AI attack with her, but she’ll be fine if you’re controlling her yourself.

Support Rating: 8/10 – She provides a lot of support from the buffs, and the AI is pretty good about keeping them active, for when you have to wipe them to remove Dark Saber.

Final Thoughts: This is a great class, and provides a lot of power, either as a Focus or a Support.

Compared to the Vanadis, the Starlancer has everything going for her, other than the lack of a full-screen CS (which isn’t too big a problem, since she still has summons, and hers doesn’t delete your XP and lucre). Starlancer buffs only need to be cast once per fight, rather than 3 times every time they expire. Attack Boost All II and Defense Boost All don’t turn off when you take damage, unlike the Vanadis version, and the Starlancer has the MGC Boost All and MGC DEF Boost All, which Vanadis lacks entirely. Starlancer also has a chance to have better buffs (Good Luck) and to reflect debuffs which would wipe your buffs (Down Side), both of which the Vanadis compensates for with the poor-man’s version of multi-target buffs (Extra Potent) and whatever the heck Random Buff is supposed to do.

Riesz Dark-Dark (Fenrir Knight)



Dark-Dark (Fenrir Knight):

  • Her 2nd class’s Locked Ability is irrelevant to the BR fight, while her 3rd class’s Locked Ability means you don’t have to recast debuffs very often, which is only marginally useful.
  • Counter (STR 4) buffs your strength by 10% (which stacks with buff spells) for a while after you get hit, which means it should be active the whole fight.
  • Attacker (STR 27) is a chain ability that increases her attack by 30, and lowers her defense by 30. If you’re controlling the recipient, that’s probably a trade you can live with.
  • Interception I & III (STA 4 and 27) (the later version is a chain ability) reduces the damage BR does when targeting the player by 5% and 20%, respectively. While Interception I probably isn’t worth it, Interception III looks like it would pair well with one of Duran’s Light classes using Provoke.
  • Defense Help (STA 12) increases her defense by 20% when she’s almost dead, which is helpful.
  • Super Stat Down I & II (INT 9 and 27) increases the potency of your debuffs by 5% and 7% respectively. I don’t know why they’re chain abilities, though.
  • Hexas (INT 21) is basically an AOE CS as a move. It’s non-elemental, which is great, and it can probably cause BR to cancel some of it’s attacks/spells, just like CS’s do.
  • Down Time (INT 12) increases the duration of your debuffs by 50%, which is nice, but I could also live without it (since you’re only debuffing BR).
  • Payback (SPRT 4) gives you 2% CS each time you get hit. Probably not enough to matter.
  • Defenseless+ / Enfeeble+ / Weaken+ (SPRT 21) are your debuffs. They’re helpful, but probably not as useful as Dark Hawk’s debuffs. You can also reproduce these with items. The fact that they’re multi-targetted doesn’t matter in the BR fight, except for use with Stat Down CS Boost (SPRT 27) which makes each debuff give her 30% CS gauge if a demon is out (15% if only BR is on the field). (Again, I question why this is on the class that has non-expiring skills, but at least this works fine for filling up her CS gauge really fast during non-boss fights.)
  • Forsake (LUCK 2) ignores damage 5% of the time. More helpful than Interception.
  • Pinpoint (LUCK 4) is a chain ability that increases one character’s crit chance by 10%, which might be consistent enough with Provoke (Duran LUCK 2) and/or Enigma (Hawk/Angela LUCK 2), if you give it to the Enigma-bearer.
  • Magic Smash I & II / Critical Smash (LUCK 9 and 21 / 12) - Magic Smash I is a chain ability, but all three reproduce her debuffs, and thus aren’t important. (Unless someone can point out that they stack with Enfeeble / Weaken or with each other, in the case of Magic Smash I & II).
  • Bad Luck (LUCK 27) gives a 30% chance of decreasing a stat by an additional 7%. (Again, I question why this is on the class that with AOEs)

Focus Rating: 8.5/10 – Attacker gives her a leg up on her other classes, but at it’s heart, she’s a no-frills attacker after the first few moments of debuffing.

Support Rating: 6/10 – Given that you can reproduce her stat downs with items, and you only need single-targetting in the BR fight, she doesn’t provide as much support as her Light classes. Also, I’m not certain if the AI will automatically apply the debuffs (for the couple of times where BR buffs his magic during the fight).

Final Thoughts: Overall decent, although I would rather have a Starlancer and/or Dark Hawk, or even a Dragon Master.

Compared to the Dragon Master, the Fenrir Knight gets Attacker, Interception III, and Bad Luck. Given that I don’t know how to determine if Bad Luck applied (and thus when to recast the debuff if it didn’t), I don’t think the Fenrir Knight has much going for it (unless you want to use the higher INT and Hexas).

Riesz Dark-Light (Dragon Master)



Dark-Light (Dragon Master):

  • Her 2nd class’s Locked Ability is irrelevant to the BR fight, while her 3rd class’s Locked Ability gives her +20% attack while at full health. With a little prodding, your AI healer should be able to keep you topped off.
  • Counter (STR 4) buffs your strength by 10% (which stacks with buff spells) for a while after you get hit, which means it should be active the whole fight.
  • Interception (STA 4) reduces the damage BR does when targeting the player by 5%. Probably not enough to matter, since BR’s dangerous attacks are either doing way too much damage, or are stunlocking you.
  • Defense Help (STA 12) increases her defense by 20% when she’s almost dead, which is helpful.
  • Super Stat Down I & II (INT 9 and 27) increases the potency of your debuffs by 5% and 7% respectively. I don’t know why they’re chain abilities, though.
  • Down Time (INT 12) increases the duration of your debuffs by 50%, which is nice, but I could also live without it (since you’re only debuffing BR).
  • Jormungandr (INT 21) is basically an AOE CS as a move. It’s non-elemental, which is great, and it can probably cause BR to cancel some of it’s attacks/spells, just like CS’s do. It could apply poison, which is the only status effect that I could imagine working on BR (but I don’t think it does). (Could someone verify if any status effects work on BR?)
  • Payback (SPRT 4) gives you 2% CS each time you get hit. Probably not enough to matter.
  • Defenseless / Enfeeble / Weaken (SPRT 9) are your debuffs. They’re helpful, but probably not as useful as Dark Hawk’s debuffs. You can also reproduce these with items.
  • Stat Down CS Boost (SPRT 27) makes each debuff she applies her 15% CS gauge.
  • Summon CS Boost (SPRT 27) gives her 25% of her CS gauge when she casts Jormungandr, which seems pretty nifty.
  • Forsake (LUCK 2) ignores damage 5% of the time. More helpful than Interception.
  • Pinpoint (LUCK 4) is a chain ability that increases one character’s crit chance by 10%, which might be consistent enough with Provoke (Duran LUCK 2) and/or Enigma (Hawk/Angela LUCK 2), if you give it to the Enigma-bearer.
  • Magic Smash / Critical Smash (LUCK 9 and 12) - the first one one is a chain ability, but both reproduce her debuffs, and thus aren’t important. (Unless someone can point out that they stack with Enfeeble / Weaken).
  • Random Debuf II (LUCK 21) gives a 20% chance for a random debuff on each power attack hit. It would be nifty on any other class.
  • Opposite Effect (LUCK 27) is a chain ability that reads “Triggers opposite effect when stat is decreased with move”, which I believe means that if she debuffs attack, she’ll also buff her own attack. This works out pretty well to make her a good Focus character.

Focus Rating: 8.5/10 – Opposite Effect isn’t quite enough to kill demons fast enough for my liking to rate her at a 9, but it does it’s duty.

Support Rating: 6/10 – Given that you can reproduce her stat downs with items, and you only need single-targetting in the BR fight, she doesn’t provide as much support as her Light classes. Also, I’m not certain if the AI will automatically apply the debuffs (for the couple of times where BR buffs his magic during the fight).

Final Thoughts: Overall decent, but I would rather have a Starlancer and/or Dark Hawk.

Compared to the Fenrir Knight, the Dragon Master has Summon CS Boost and Opposite Effect, which means A) you get more benefit from casting your summon than the Fenrir Knight, and B) you get more from Opposite Effect than the Fenrir Knight does from Attacker.