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+++++++++++++++++ INTRODUCTION +++++++++++++++++

"The town of Midgar is under the tight grip of Shin-Ra, the infamous conglomerate. The Shin-Ra Electric Power Company has been exploiting the life force of the planet, destroying its' precious nature. Meanwhile, the underground rebel force with a mission, Avalanche, managed to blow up Makon Furnace No. 1. Their goal is to destroy Shin-Ra and stop their atrocities. It turned out that Cloud, one of the former Shin-Ra soldiers, helped the explosion. Can just a handful of brave soldiers save the life of the planet? Shin-Ra is much too big an enemy to fight against.

THE FATE OF THE PLANET IS ON THIS BATTLE."

So begins Final Fantasy VII's saga, set in a futuristic world where swords and sorcery are combined with guns and machinery. This FAQ is designed to guide people through the game, providing not only a walkthrough for the adventures contained on each disc but also information on basic gameplay, secrets and tricks, and more.

This FAQ is based entirely on the Japanese version of FF7. Therefore, some things in this guide may not apply to the English version of FF7 when it is released (presumably on September 7th, 1997). Furthermore, as the writer of this FAQ neither speaks nor understands Japanese, this guide is not 100% accurate. Although mistakes will be corrected in future revisions as soon as they are noticed, some parts of this guide are bound to be unclear on the subject or run the risk of supplying false info.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++
WALKTHROUGH - DISC ONE
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

(Note that the beginning of this game has been altered somewhat from the FF7 demo disc packaged with Tobal No. 1 and other FF7 demos.)

========================================================================= a. MAKORO POWER PLANT =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Potion x3, Phoenix Tail, Recovery materia, Assault Gun.

At the start of the game, you'll have 3 Potions, a Phoenix Tail, and an Ether. You can't equip Materia until you reach section 3b, by the way.

Once you leave the train, check the body of the closest guard twice to get two Potions. Then head north. You'll be attacked by some guards. Take them out with your sword (you may win a Potion for killing them) and then move left to go outside. Now, talk to your teammates (Biggs, Wedge, and Jesse), then name yourself and Barett. Make your way to the northwestern door, and head up in the next room to enter the heart of the power plant.

Talk to Barett, (who joins you) and then talk to each Avalanche member to open the doors. After opening the second door, head right to enter another chamber with a treasure chest (Phoenix Tail). Then, go back and enter the elevator (you'll have to talk to Jesse first). Press the arrow switch to activate it.

Work your way down to stairs and go through the door to the left. Then follow Jesse down the ladder. When he stops, search the area in front of him for a Potion (it's hard to see because of the steam). Climb down the cross the pipes, descend the nearby ladder, and take note of the Save Point before heading down the walkway.

Pick up the Recovery materia on the ground in the next area and set the bomb. An alarm will sound and you'll have to fight the boss, a huge scorpion-like machine.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: GAADOSUKOOPION (Guard Scorpion) LV: ?? HP: 800 MP: 0

Cloud's Sandaa magic works well. Don't worry about the boss' infinity- symbol-shaped ray and have Barett attack. When you've done enough damage, the boss will start to shake and Cloud will talk to Barett. From this point onward, don't attack the boss and heal yourself or simply guard until the boss attacks you. If you try to hurt it during this time, the boss responds with a damaging laser ray shot from his tail. A few more hits after it stops shaking and the boss dies. You'll get an Assault Gun when you kill it.

You now have ten minutes to escape from the power plant. You'll need to make your way back to the upside-down T-shaped entrance hall where one of the Avalanche members is waiting. (If you've played the demo disc, know that you don't need to 'search' for the other members; just talk to the one member waiting for you at the top of the stairs and ladders to make him jump over you and then get out. Since Barett gets a new gun after the battle, be sure to equip it. Also, talk to the other members to open the two doors on your way back.

========================================================================= b. MIDGAR CITY =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Potion.

After the Avalanche members blow up the passage, head up the stairs. You'll meet Aerith here, but she won't join you yet. Since Barett's gone, you'll have to fight the enemies here alone. There's a Potion. to the southwest of the circular structure (near the lampposts). Walk south. In this next part, you'll meet up with guards and have the choice of running (bottom choice) or fighting (top choice). After a few more encounters, Cloud'll jump onto the passing train and run into the Avalanche gang. After talking to them, walk to the 'front' of the screen and you'll jump off into another area. Talk to the people here and one of the members (Jesse) will show you a picture of the Makoro plant on the train's screen. Approach Barett and you'll end up going to the group's base.

========================================================================= c. AVALANCHE BASE =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: 1500 gil, Affect All materia, Ether.

Head west and go upwards. Talk to the kid by the fence, then head west again (there's a Save Point nearby, too). Talk to the people here, then check out the bar. At the top of the tallest building in the south- east is a bedroom. The kid here will let you spend the night for 10 gil.

In the bar, you'll meet Tifa, who is also a member of Avalanche, as well as Marin, who is supposedly Barett's daughter. After naming Tifa, Barett shows up when you try to leave and reveals the hidden base underneath the bar. Talk to Tifa, and then when you meet Barett the next morning, he'll give you 1500 gil. You'll also find that there is another Save Point in the second floor of the tall building, inside the huge cage. The man in the right corner of this room has a Materia by his feet (Affect All). Take it and a chest will drop down that has an Ether inside of it. You can learn about the game's mechanics from the people in here (if you know Japanese, that is :)) If you check the Main Menu, you'll see that you can use Materia at this point, and that Tifa has joined your party. In addition, the two buildings that were locked the other day are now open.

When you're ready, go back to the train station to prepare for Avalanche's next mission. If you like, you can go to the far right to enter a train yard, but there's not much of interest there.

========================================================================= d. RETURN TO THE MAKORO PLANT =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Ether x2, Potion, Tent, Titanium Bangle.

Board the train. When the timer appears after you talk to Tifa, go through each train car until Tifa jumps off one of the cars and you and Barett follow her. You'll end up in an underground railroad passageway. If you go south (towards the 'front' of the screen), you'll go through the same screen 5-6 times before coming to two guards who you can fight. When the battle's over, choose the bottom option to keep fighting or the top option to run away. You can fight the same battle over and over, so when you get tired of fighting, just pick the top option. An OK place to gain some experience, gil, and AP, if you think you'll need it. Anyway, it's a lot faster to just head north to where the green barrier is and go down the hatch to the west (examine it and choose the top choice twice). Pick up the Ether in the adjoining passage, climb down the two ladders, and talk to the Avalanche member in this area. Then go up the ladder near him to reach a room where Jesse is waiting for you. Take the Potion that's next to him and climb down the ladder on the left end of the room to reach a chamber where you can find a Tent, a Save Point, and Biggs.

Go up the ladder here to reach the Makoro Plant. The room you're in should be familiar. Slide down the pipe and then work your way back to the heart of the plant (where you set the bomb last time). After Cloud fiddles with the machinery, go back to the large room and climb up the stairs and into the elevator. This time, you'll ride it to a new floor. Grab the contents of the treasure chest (Ether) and then head to the left where there are three control panels. You'll need to hit your panel as the same time Barett and Tifa hit theirs (using the O button), so give it a shot. Instead of waiting for them to raise their arms, you'll have an easier time if you time it to hit your panel _just_ before they do. You can't use the panels if you didn't go back to the heart of the power plant. Afterwards, go through the opened gate (there's a Save Point here), and head north.

In the T-shaped room, you'll be stopped by a group of guards, and then meet the president of Shinra. After that, a helicopter and a hydrofoil- like machine show up. The Shinra president leaves in the helicopter, but the huge machine attacks you and your friends.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: EABASUTAA (Air Buster) LV: 15 HP: 1200 MP: 0

This machine turns to face (and attack) whomever hits him. So, if one of your characters is low on life, have the person on the opposite side attack to draw the boss' attention away. Be especially careful of his shockwave pounce--it causes tons of damage (but also increases your Limit meter quickly). Remember that even if his back is turned, he can use a weak machine gun attack on you. Use potions and the Recovery Materia to keep up your HPs and use Thunder as well as your Limit Break attacks to take this machine out. You'll receive a Titanium Bangle if you win the battle.

========================================================================= e. MAKORO CITY SLUMS =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Potion, Phoenix Tail, Protect materia, Ether.

After the battle, the boss will explode, sending Cloud off the walkway in the ensuing blast. When you awake, you'll find yourself in a church. Aerith is here, and you can name her after talking to her several times. Reno (of the Turks, a group of hired thugs that are currently employed by the Shinra) shows up afterwards with some guards. In the next room, Aerith falls down while trying to escape with Cloud. You now have the option of fighting the guards using Aerith or trying to bean the guards on the head with barrels on the upper floor (if you miss, you'll have to fight using Aerith anyway). Remember, she starts off in the back row, so to increase damage, make her move up by choosing 'Change' at the start of each battle (do this by pressing left, then the O button).

The correct order of barrels to drop is: the leftmost barrel (in the back), the far right barrel (in the back), and the far right barrel (in the front). Simply examine each barrel and choose the top option to drop it. This way, Aerith won't have to fight anybody. When Aerith meets you at the top of the chapel, she'll hook up with Cloud.

In the next room, climb up the second beam on the left and jump out of the hole in the roof. After you and Aerith make it back to ground level, head left to find a Save Point. To the northwest is a town. Be sure to meet the man in the pipe near the entrance. There are several stores here, including one that sells Materia. To the far, far right is a path that leads to Aerith's house and a garden. You can spend the night here once you've met Erumina, Aerith's mother. The next morning, look between the desk and the bed for a Potion and a Phoenix Tail. Then, sneak downstairs (or Aerith will make you go back to bed) and leave the house (you can do this by not touching the walls and not running, either). In the lower flower bed to the right, you can get a Protect materia and an Ether. There's another Save Point near her house if you need to use it.

Leave the town and go left to the hole in the wall. Aerith will be here waiting for you and will rejoin you. In the next location, work your way upward (by going across the hole-filled metal length, then down the iron beams and through the passage, then up the brown pipe and finally down the stairs and heading to the left). After Aerith leaves you at the playground, head right, then up to arrive at the Wall Market.

========================================================================= f. WALL MARKET =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Ether, Phoenix Tail, Stimulant.

Aerith rejoins you (again) here. There's a Save Point in the upper-right part of the village. The building in the lower left is an inn, where you can spend the night for 10 gil. To the right of it is the entrance to a brothel. The building in the middle has nothing in it but a computer. (If you touch it, a machine gun will fire at you and Cloud jumps away. You can't do anything here until later). Just above that building is an item shop. North of the shop is a sushi bar. Finally, there is a clothing store to the upper left and some sort of pottery store to the upper right. A path by the clothing store leads to another part of town. Here, there is a gym, a restaurant, and a weapon shop. In the northern area lies a large building. If you go east from here, you'll reach a dead-end area.

Your objective in this part of the game is to sneak into the large building where Tifa is being kept. To do this, Cloud will have to dress up as a woman in order to get inside since men aren't allowed into the building. So, follow these steps to get the items you need to 'alter' Cloud's appearance. You may want to read this entire section before starting so that you'll know how your choices will affect the game.

a) Go to the brothel and talk to the big guy with silver hair who's chatting with the bouncer at the door. Talk to him and pick the first option to inquire about Tifa.

b) Go back to the building at the end of town and talk to the guy near the door. Aerith and Cloud will move away and have a short conversation.

c) Return to the first screen, go to the clothing store, and talk to the store owner by standing near the bottom edge of the counter.

d) Go to the bar in the second screen and talk to the lone man by the door. During the conversation, you'll have to make two decisions. So when you're asked a question, pick either the first or second choice. After you're done talking to the man, return to the clothing store.

e) At the store, you'll see that the man from the inn is now behind the counter. Talk to him and you'll receive an item based upon your decisions:

- If you answered: first choice, first or second choice, you'll get the Kotton no Doresu (Cotton Dress). - If you answered: second choice, first choice, you'll be given the Saten no Doresu (Satin Dress). - If you answered: second choice, second choice again, he'll give you the Shiruke no Doresu (Silk Dress).

f) Cloud will try on the dress, but won't actually wear it. Leave the clothing store and go to the second screen. Enter the gym and converse with the woman by the fighting ring. When you have the chance, pick the bottom option twice. As soon as you clear her message with the O button, start pressing the S, X, and O buttons repeatedly in that order. The object of the game is to go fast enough to make Cloud do more squats than the African gymnast, but you don't want to press the buttons too fast or Cloud can't keep up. It's not too hard to win since the other guy will often stop to scratch his head, but you only have 30 seconds, so get in as many squats as you can.

- If you are able to do more squats than the gymnast, you'll be given the Burondo no Katsura (Blonde Wig). - If you and the gymnast have the same score, the lady will give you the Cyapatsu no Katsura (?? Wig). - If the gymnast does better than you, then the lady will give you the Kuzege no Katsura (?? Wig).

At this point, you can just return to the clothing shop and enter the stall; Cloud will dress up as a woman and you can return to the north building to get inside. You can also choose to not change yet and explore more of the Wall Market, picking up items that you can use to make Cloud more 'feminine'. If you're finished, then skip down a ways to find out what to do next. Otherwise, keep reading.

g) Go to the pottery shop. When you have to choose an answer, pick the top one twice. (You can't talk to him unless you chatted with the guard at the north building). Then go to the inn and pay 10 gil to spend the night. In the middle of the night, you'll find yourself in front of the vending machine in the outer hallway. Pick any option (I hope you have enough gil). The next morning, return to the pottery shop and talk to the man to get an item:

- If you bought the first item (200 gil), he'll give you the Daiya no Tiara (Diamond Tiara). - If you bought the second item (100 gil), he'll give you the Rubii no Tiara (Ruby Tiara). - If you bought the third item (50 gil), he'll give you the Garasu no Tiara (Glass Tiara).

h) Enter the sushi bar and walk past the empty seat. When a message appears, choose the top option. Then choose any option, (you'll need 70 gil), followed by the middle choice to get a Kuupon (Coupon). Now go to the item store and talk to the man behind the counter. Choose one of the three options to get an item, then head back to the restaurant. Go to the bathroom and talk to the person inside. Accept the first choice and:

- You'll get the Koron (Cologne) if you traded the Coupon for the first-choice item at the item shop. - You'll get the Furawaa Koron (Flower Cologne) if you traded the Coupon for the second-choice item at the item shop. - You'll get the Sekushii Koron (Sexy Cologne) if you traded the Coupon for the third-choice item at the item shop.

i) Talk to the large man in the white shirt who's standing near the edge of the screen to get the Kaado (Card). He won't give it to you unless you talked to the guard by the door of the northern building. Head right to arrive at the brothel. If you talk to the bouncer, he'll let you in once he sees the Card, but Aerith refuses to enter. Inside the brothel, you'll find that the doors on the right side are locked, but if you chose the bottom option, you can look inside them and peer around using the control pad and the O button. If you look in the upper-right keyhole, you'll see a familiar face...a small version of Cait Sith! If you go to the north room and talk to the farthest girl on the right several times, you can choose the top option to make her dance faster and faster. You now have two choices: you can only do one or the other. They are:

Examine the lower-left door and pick the top option twice. In the room, talk to the girl and pick the top option three times to take a soak with Mukkii and his friends. Answer however you like while in the tub and Cloud will be given the Bikini Pantsu (Bikini Pants).

Or, examine the upper-left door and pick the top option twice. Inside, talk to the ghostly Cloud near the stone tub and Cloud will have a psychotic episode. When you come to, all your HP and MP is restored, thanks to...Mukkii :( Talk to him and choose the bottom option. Then talk to the girl and you'll get the Ranjerii (Lingerie).

All done? There's nothing left to do now but return to the clothing store and dress up as a woman. When you finish, go to the large building in the north and talk to the man by the food carts again. He'll let you into a posh-looking parlor. Now, go up the stairs and into the door on the far left after talking to the receptionist. Then, go down the staircase to the torture room (!) where you'll find Tifa and an Ether by the smoldering coals. Once she's joined you, head back up the stairs and go into the middle door. Inside is Tifa's kidnapper, the nefarious Don Corneo. He will examine each of you when you try to approach him. Who he picks for his 'friend' is determined by what items you collected in the Wall Market:

- He'll pick Cloud if you're wearing the Silk Dress, Blonde Wig, and have the 'best' extra items (the Diamond Tiara, Sexy Cologne, and Lingerie or Bikini Pants). - He'll pick Aerith if you're wearing the Silk Dress, the Blonde Wig, the Lingerie and the Sexy Cologne (in addition to anything else you may have). - He'll pick Tifa if you're wearing the Silk Dress, Blonde Wig, and one or two of the extra items not mentioned above (or anything worse than that).

If Corneo picked Tifa or Aerith, then read below:

In the next room, examine the item bag by the bed to get a Phoenix Tail, and talk to the man by the television set after talking to the other henchmen. After revealing your true nature to the love-struck goons, they'll fight you. This is followed by another fight with the other three punks. Afterward, get Aerith from the torture chamber and then go into the middle door again (if Aerith was picked, then you'll meet Tifa when you go outside). When you're through intimidating Corneo, look behind his bead for a Stimulant, then stand by your allies. He'll make you choose one of three options. No matter which one you choose, you'll fall through a trapdoor.

If Corneo picked Cloud, then you'll end up in his room. Search behind his bed for a Stimulant, then talk to him and answer anyway you like. Your friends will burst in and Corneo will ask you a question; pick any one you like and you'll still plummet to the sewers below.

========================================================================= g. THE SEWERS / TRAIN YARD REVISITED =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Potion x4, Phoenix Down, Steal materia, Hi Potion x3, Yamabikoenmaku, Ether x2.

Once the cut scene with the Shinra flunkies ends, you'll find yourself in a sewer. Before talking to Tifa or Aerith, climb up the stairs to the south and go along the walkway to nab a Potion. Before you can escape, a blue monster attacks your party.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: APUSU LV: 18 HP: 1800 MP: 0

His dark wave attack hurts all members, so use Potions and Recovery Materia to heal your wounds. Luckily, the dark wave will damage the big blue guy, too (he uses this attack as a counterattack before dying if he can manage it). When he does the reverse dark wave, it causes less damage to him. Flame spells work the best on him. Use Cloud's Limit Break to harm the boss and use Aerith's Limit Break to heal yourselves. You'll receive a Phoenix Down for winning the battle.

Climb up the ladder and head right. Go down into the sewage, then up the stairs. Grab the Yellow Materia (Steal) and go down the hatch. In the next room, go down the stairs, then climb up the side of the curved structure. Climb up the ladder and you'll go outside. There's a Save Point here and an item on top of the nearby train car. Check out the oil drum by entering the train car (near the Save Point) to get a Hi Potion. Get another Hi Potion on the roof of adjacent car, then hop off onto the iron beam and check the oil drum to the north for a Yamabikoenmaku. Walk right, then south and enter the nearby train car to get a Potion. Climb up the ladder, head north, and climb down again. Go north once more through the train car then exit to your left to find a second Potion. Then go north to arrive at the next screen.

Here, circle left around the car to get a Potion. Keep going left to find an oil can with an Ether inside of it. Hop on the train to move the other car out of the way. Climb atop the formerly blocked car to net a Hi Potion. Now, ride the other train back backwards, climb onto the eastern train car, jump onto the train you just moved, and climb across it and the last car before going down the ladder to get back to the front part of the Avalanche train yard.

Head left. The Avalanche members will be fighting atop the power generator you first saw when you arrived at the base. After Wedge plummets to the ground, save your game at the Save Point and talk to the man on the left if you need to buy items. Climb up the stairs and you'll meet Barett, who is firing at the Shinra helicopter you saw back at the plant. The same man who attacked Aerith in the cathedral will jump out, and you'll have to fight him. Good thing Barett joins you. When you inflict enough damage, the boss runs away!

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: RENO LV: 17 HP: 1000 MP: 0

This guy packs a wallop. He can imprison your friends using his golden Piramiddo (Pyramid) attack, and if he does this to all your members, you lose. To break the pyramids, attack your allies (they won't be damaged). Watch for his spark bolt attack (which can paralyze you) and use your Limit Breaks whenever possible. Reiki works well on him. For some players, this may be the first battle they lose! You'll get an Ether for scaring him off should you win. -------------------------------------------------------------------------

========================================================================= h. INTO THE SKY =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: See Through materia, Zinc Battery x3, Ether.

After fending off the boss, Shon will kidnap Aerith (and p**p slap her)! As he escapes, the entire city explodes and falls down a level, destroying it. Cloud, Tifa, and Barett all come to in the playground at the Makoro Slums. After Barett yells for Marin, Wedge, and his other friends, he and Tifa join you in the next area. Go back up to get a sparkling yellow Materia (See Through), before returning to Wall Market. The man in the pottery store will now sell you Materia, and if you go back to the parlor, you have the option of freeing one of Don Corneo's men from the torture chamber. Even if you got the Card the first time around, you can no longer enter the brothel, BTW.

When you're done, leave and go south from the playground. Return to the Area 5 Town and go to Aerith's house. Talk to Erumina, her mother. You can spend the night in the upstairs bedroom once the intermission ends. Return to the Wall Market and go to the dead-end area near the parlor. (you'll see a bunch of kids run in there). Climb up the pipe, and you'll find yourself high above the town. If you haven't gotten them already, go to the 'Machine & Gun' store and talk to the man at the left end of the store; he'll sell you 3 Zinc Batteries for 300 gil. You'll need them to activate the boxes in this part of the game. With that in mind, examine the box-shaped object in the lower right to try and start a nearby propeller. Head up, and you'll jump onto the propeller. From there, make your way to the other box and activate the painted barrier. Climb up it, and use the O button to jump onto the swinging metal pipe. After that, climb up to the next screen.

Once here, climb up, then drop down to activate the next box and you'll find an Ether. Climb down the lefthand pipe and make your way back up again. Instead of dropping down, continue up, and you'll find yourself at Shin-Ra's headquarters.

========================================================================= i. SHIN-RA HEADQUARTERS =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Elixir, Attribute materia, Star Pendant, Four Slot, Affect All materia, Phoenix Tail, Ether, Poison materia, Shurudan x2, Talisman, Technqiues of the Enemy materia, Potion x4, Mithril Bracelet, Boudan Chokki, Guard Up.

(KM's note - I think the actual translation is 'Shin-Ra Building', but I don't know for sure, so I'll stick with Shin-Ra HQ for now).

There's a Save Point here. You have the option of either heading to the left and climbing up a stairwell or barging in through the front door. Going up the stairs takes forever, but it's free of enemies and you can get an Elixir that's lying on one of the landings. On the other hand, going through the front door and taking the elevators in the back is faster, but you have to fight several battles along the way. Not only that, but you can chase around the Shinra staff before taking the elevator :) You can't use the circular lifts by the doors yet, but you can use them once you reach the 60th floor. If you go up the stairs, you'll see a door marked 'Accessories'. Inside the room, you can look at a monitor to see a short FMV sequence of the silver car that Rufus rides around in during the Junon Town celebration (which happens later on in the game). There are two chests here, but the woman in this room won't let you open them. Remember, if you go through the front, check the control panel in the elevator (the one that goes haywire) after each enemy encounter in order to continue upwards. If you go up the stairs then change your mind and go back down, you won't have to fight anybody on the elevators, and the main area of the ground floor will be empty.

No matter what method you use, you'll eventually reach the 59th floor. Head southeast and kill the armored guards to get the Kaado Kii 60 (60th floor Card Key), then take the lift to the 60th floor. Here, you'll have to head to the room in the upper-left and make it to the other side without being seen by the patrolling guards. In order to stay hidden from them, pause behind the gold statues, then lead Tifa and Barett across using the O button. If you mess up, not only to you get attacked (ambush-style combat), but you'll have to start all over again. Keep in mind that the set of guards on the right half of the screen move faster than the ones on the left.

Take the stairway up to the 61st floor. Talk to everyone here. A man who asks you about Aerith will give you the Kaado Kii 62 (62nd floor Card Key) if you answer ".........". On floor 62, talk to the man in the room, Domino, and the man in white, (Hatto) then check out the two library rooms. Answer Domino's question and he'll give you the Kaado Kii 65 (65th floor Card Key). The problem with this is that the answer changes with each game you play. It seems like it would be easy enough to simply try each answer until you get it right, but you get an Attribute Materia if you answer correctly the first time. So, it's in your best interest to just reset and keep trying in order to get the materia. You can buy hints from Hatto if you don't know the answer, for varying prices (NSS).

The 63rd floor is tricky. You have to collect 3 Kuupons (Coupons) from all three rooms, but you're only able to remove 3 gates at a time. You can reset the gates by investigating the computer in the right-hand room, but that also resets the location of the items. You can move around using walkways, but to enter them you have to climb into the black, box- shaped structures (there's one in the computer room). You can't do that unless you have at least one of the three items.

To get the items, follow this procedure: activate the computer, then head to the top of the screen and open the gate farthest to the right. Head right and open the left-hand gate, then walk right and go south to enter the room where Coupon A is. Choose the top option to climb into the black box and use the walkway to get to the room where Coupon B is at. Finally, go through the door in this room and open the gate to the left, then go north to enter the room containing Coupon C. Then use the walkway to return to the computer room.

Now if you want, you can just trade one of the Coupons for an item, but if you have all three then you'll get all three items. The trade setup works like this:

- Trade Coupon A for the Star Pendant - Trade Coupon B for the Four Slot Bracelet - Trade Coupon C for the Affect All Materia

To get your items (depending on how many coupons you have) go to the computer and choose the bottom option, then the top. Keep in mind that you can only do this once.

On the 64th floor, you'll find a Save Point and bedroom to your left. If you examine the lockers in the back room, you can find a Phoenix Tail, an Ether, and a megaphone (the Marvelous Cheer), but you can only take the first two items for now. Head to the 65th floor.

Here, you have to open a treasure chest, then examine a broken section of the model in the circular room and choose the top option to repair it. This unlocks one of the other chests, allowing you to open it and use the part inside to repair another section of the model. When you have finished, you'll get the Kaado Kii 66 (66th floor Card Key). You must fix the model in a counter-clockwise fashion starting from the bottom. The order of the chests you open goes like this:

- Upper-left room: bottom chest - Upper-left room: top chest - Lower-left room: left chest - Lower-left room: top chest - Upper-right room: chest - Middle-right room: you can now get the Kaado Kii 66 from here.

On the 66th floor, you can either run into the meeting hall as quickly as you can, or you can enter the stall in the bathroom located in the northwest corner of the floor. Choose the middle option, and you'll climb on top of the toilet and enter an air duct. Move forward to see what the Shinra members (Riibu, Parumaa, President of Shinra, Haidekkaa, Houjou, and Sukaaretto) are discussing. Climb back out, then climb up the stairwell after Houjou (the pony-tailed scientist) in the room to the right of the meeting hall. Note that you'll end up in the air duct even if you ran into the hall...strange. On the next floor (67), talk to the people and keep following the scientist. After looking in the purple chamber (and after Cloud gets another headache), move beyond the crates and to the right to find a Save Point and a treasure chest with a Poison Materia inside.

Enter the elevator to the north, and then watch as the scientist toys with Aerith. Now, choose who you want to protect Aerith, (either Barett or Tifa), and then you can name the lion-like creature (Red 13) that was attacking Houjou. He'll fight alongside you when the mutant boss shows up. Don't forget that Red 13 comes equipped with his own Materia!

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: SANPURU:HO512 (Sample: HO512) LV: 19 HP: 1000 MP: 120 SANPURU:HO512-OPT LV: 7 HP: 300 MP: 48

Don't try to kill this guy's little guardians; he'll only create more. Instead, use Thunder or Flame on him and try Recovery to keep up your own life power. Avoid using physical attacks, Cold, or Poison. This means that Red 13 is better off using Fire against the boss than attacking. This battle is easier if you have Barett, who can inflict more damage. Don't worry about getting poisoned since you can get infected again when the boss uses the pink gas attack on your characters (there's no point in trying to de-poison yourselves). You'll get two Shurudans and a Talisman should you kill the boss.

Tifa and Barett return after the battle. When you're in control of Cloud again, be sure to grab the yellow materia (Techniques of the Enemy) that's left behind in the sample chamber. Then go up the ladder and head south. Talk to the man in the gray coat to get the Kaado Kii 68 (68th floor Card Key). Go back down to floor 66 and try entering one of the lifts; you'll get caught by Ruudo (he's a Turk who you'll be running into constantly throughout the game). He and Shon will 'escort' you to a meeting with the president of Shinra. Afterwards, you'll end up in the jail cells on floor 67. Here, listen to everyone, then go to sleep.

The next morning, you'll find that your door is unlocked. Investigate the guard, then talk to Tifa. Check the guard again to unlock the doors, then look in on Barett and Red 13. After freeing your companions, return to the lab and talk to Red 13. Talk to him again after taking the elevator up to the 68th floor, then use the incline to reach the walkway again. Go all the way along it until you find two purple Potions, then climb back down and enter the door from the ground floor. The green bars of light won't hurt you; run through them and pick up two more Potions before climbing up the stairs to the 69th floor.

Go out the center door to reach a Save Point. Then, run up either of the purple stairs. Check out the dead Shinra president, capture Parumaa, then enter the door to the north to exit the room. Outside, talk to the man in white. He's Rufus, son of the Shinra president.

The other characters will return to the floor below, and you must lead them outside (I don't know what the difference is when Tifa makes you choose an option when you're waiting by the door). Your team now consists of Red 13, Barett, and Aerith; don't forget to re-equip your Materia, then head to the lift (by taking the lower door). When you activate it, you are attacked by a huge gun-wielding machine while going down the side of the Shinra HQ.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: HANDOREDDOGANNAA (Hundred Gunner) LV: 18 HP: 1600 MP:0 (weak vs. Ikazuchi)

You can only use long-range attacks, so use Barett's attacks and his Limit Break as well as magic to harm this foe. Poison-based magic inflicts no damage, while Thunder does the most damage. Red 13 is a sitting duck if he doesn't have any spell Materia equipped, so be sure to deck him out with some magic spells (he can still use his Limit Break). When you inflict enough damage, the boss starts to break down. After the second break, he starts firing heat blasts that damage all members, so be careful. -------------------------------------------------------------------------

After killing the boss, you must fight a flying machine.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: HERIGANNA (Heli Gunner) LV: 19 HP: 1000 MP: 0 (weak vs. Ikazuchi)

As with the other boss, don't use Poison but do use Thunder. You may be weak after the last battle, so make use of Potions, the Recovery Materia, and Aerith's B1/1 Break to restore lost life. You'll win a Mithril Bracelet when the boss dies.

The scene switches back to Cloud. Heal yourself if necessary, equip Materia, then press Start. Rufus will then attack you. Remember, Cloud doesn't have any Materia equipped, and he can only use Materia that members in the other team aren't using, so be sure you have the spare Materia orbs you need (I think the number of orbs you have is changed depending on what option you choose just before Tifa leaves Aerith and you fight the two previous bosses -NSS-).

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: RUUFAUSU (Rufus) LV: 21 HP: 500 MP: 0 DAAKUNEISHON (Dark Nation?) LV: 18 HP: 140 MP: 80

Kill the panther guardian first, then go after the boss. Although you can't do anything about the panther casting Barrier on Rufus, you can use magic instead to inflict damage. He can only hurt you with his shotgun, so don't worry about healing yourself after each round (just heal yourself when your life gets lower). Sock him with your Limit Breaks and he'll escape onto the circling helicopter after you've damaged him enough. Cloud will get a Boudan Chokki and a Guard Up when the battle ends.

Leave the rooftop and head back to where Tifa is waiting for you. As Aerith, try to approach the front doors. After a short conversation, you and the gang will escape by motorcycle (and truck). Your team is now made up of Cloud, Tifa, and Barett.

An option screen appears where you have the following options:

S Left Attack X Switch members O Right Attack T Main Menu Start Return to game

Be sure to re-equip Materia before returning to the game!

========================================================================= j. ESCAPE! =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Star Pendant.

Use the controller to move any any direction. Pressing S makes you slash to the left, and pressing O makes you slash to the right. The object here is to protect your friends in the truck from enemy cyclists. Eventually, you'll reach a dead end and fight the boss. The amount of life you start off with during the battle depends on how much life you and your friends lost during the high-speed escape. If a character lost all his life, he begins with only 1 point when the battle starts, but since the boss gets to make the first attack, they'll have to be revived using Phoenix Tails if there area any live party members left. The boss is a spiked, armored robot with six wheels.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: MOOTAABOORU (Motor Bore) LV: 19 2600 MP: 120 (weak vs. Ikazuchi)

This boss gets a free attack from behind...sheesh. Most of his attacks do little damage, but his flamethrower and flying fire sweep attacks can kill your party in a single blast (the fire sweep does around 220 damage)! The best way to beat this group is have your party consist of Aerith and Barett. Give the Affect all and Recovery materia to either Cloud or Barett, and give the other character Thunder. This way, you can heal with one character, attack with another, and then use Aerith's Limit Break to keep your life up at all times. Cold works better than Flame against the boss (for those characters that don't have Thunder equipped). Remember, your rows are reversed when attacked from behind, so put Cloud and Barett in the back and Aerith in the front if you want them to line up properly when the boss shows up. If you beat the boss, you'll get a Star Pendant.

========================================================================= k. KALM TOWN / CHOCOBO FARM =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Ether x3, Peacemaker, Guard Up, 'Summon Chocobo & Moogle' materia.

You'll find yourselves outside of the gate after beating the boss (you could also see this scene by going south from the church where you met Aerith the first time). Decide who will be in your group, then head towards the screen to exit and arrive at the World Map (the outside world).

Outer World Controls

T Menu Screen L2/R2 Change from overhead/side view L1/R2 Same effect as L2/R2 Turn left/right (during side view) Start shows World Map Start x2 Shows Large World Map Start x3 No map is shown Select Same as Start

Head northeast to reach Kalm Town. Go into the inn to see the rest of the gang waiting for you. Cloud will talk to the others about Sephiroth via a series of semi-interactive flashbacks:

- You'll start off in a truck being driven by Shinra soldiers. After talking to the soldiers and Sephiroth (Cloud's former ally in the Shinra army and now a wanted criminal), the truck will be stopped by a dragon. You'll have to fight it, but Sephiroth (who is super- powerful) can kill it in two hits. In the flashback, Cloud's portrait is different; this 'Young Cloud' is of a low level, but Sephiroth is so strong that you need not worry about losing battles. However, you can't control Sephiroth's actions and you can't hurt him (because of your low level), either. Although Young Cloud comes equipped with an Advance Attack materia and Sephiroth has several mastered materia equipped, you can't take them for your own (although you can if you use a Game Shark code...see section 14). Also, Young Cloud and Sephiroth can't use Limit Breaks (because they don't have any).

- After the battle, you'll end up in Nivelheim, Cloud's hometown. Talk to Sephiroth and the guards if you wish, then head north. If you want to look around the town, feel free to, but nothing you do during this part of the game has an affect on the rest of your quest. One thing you might want to do is go into Tifa's house (the large building on the 'southeastern' side of town). Choose the top option when you're prompted to, then go up the stairs and choose the top option again. Approach the piano in the nearby room and pick the bottom option; Cloud plays a tune on the piano that you can play yourself when you arrive at Nivelheim later in order to get Tifa's Limit Break manual (see section 14 for details). Also note that you can't get Vincent Valentine during Cloud's flashback because you can't examine the safe :(

- When you're done looking around town, go to the inn and head upstairs. Talk to Sephiroth twice and choose the bottom option. The next day, talk to Sephiroth and get your picture taken, then sit back and watch the FMV. When you're in control of Cloud, head along the bridge and talk to Tifa, then talk to her again further along the bridge and it will break. After you've recovered, head northeast into the cave, then keep heading north. Eventually, you'll arrive at the Jenova plant. Enter it, head along the beams, then walk onto the wood platform and climb down the chains and go after Sephiroth. Talk to him in the next area, examine the chamber to the left of Sephiroth, then talk to him twice, once to make him move out of the way and once to make Cloud look inside the chamber. After Sephiroth goes ballistic, you'll return to Kalm Town. Pick the top option to save your game, or the bottom option to continue. Cloud's narrative starts off back at Nivelheim, where he enters the large mansion at the edge of town.

- Inside, climb the two staircases and head to the right. Enter the lower door and make your way into the next room; if you examine the circular part of the stone wall, a passage appears. Enter it and climb down the spiraling walkway until you reach the bottom; keep walking from here to find a library. Leave after Sephiroth finishes talking. After Cloud wakes up, return to the library. Sephiroth gives a little speech then he exits the mansion; return to the town square. Try entering the house to your right.

- Back at the Jenova plant, return to the area with the chambers after witnessing the struggle between Tifa and Sephiroth. Examine Tifa to carry her out of harm's way, then run up the stairs and enter the door that Sephiroth opened. After the FMV sequence, Cloud's flashback ends and you are returned to Kalm Town.

Note that you have to go to Kalm Town to proceed with the game; you can't make your way through the Mithril Mines beforehand, although you can visit the Chocobo Farm if you want to. As for treasure, there's an Ether in the door beneath the stairs in the house near the inn, another Ether in the cabinet on the second floor of the house to the right of that house, and a Peacemaker in the chest on the second floor of the third house (take the curving stairs). If you take the normal stairs in the same house, you can get a Guard Up in the cabinet by the little girl. Finally, in the house on the other side of the town, there is an Ether in the door beneath the stairs on the north wall of the first floor. Oh, you'll be given the PHS (Party Hensei System) when you talk to your allies on the first floor of the inn; it allows you to switch group members whenever you want, providing that you're in the World Map or standing on a Save Point (there are a few exceptions to this rule).

Leave the town and head east to reach the Chocobo Farm. Talk to the Chocobo at the front end of the pen and choose the top option to see the big yellow birds dance; you'll get the 'Summon Chocobo and Moogle' materia afterwards. Then, talk to Guringurin (the man with the hat) in the stables behind the pen. Choose the first option, then the 4th option, then the top option again. Providing you have 2000 gil to spare, he'll sell you a 'Chocobo Attract' materia, which lets you attract chocobos to ride.

To catch a chocobo, wander around outside on the chocobo tracks (in this area of the game, you can meet them on the light patches of grass, too), until you are attacked. If a chocobo is one of your opponents, then kill off the other enemies and when the battle ends, you'll be riding the chocobo. If you attack the chocobo, it will hurt you and the other enemies, then escape, so you'll have to try again. Don't forget, you can only fight chocobos if you have the Chocobo Attract materia equipped. When riding a chocobo, your can move around normally, and you won't get attacked by enemies. You can press X to dismount, but if you do this, the Chocobo will run away and you'll have to catch another one.

A little to the south and directly west of the Chocobo farm is a cave, but a creeping snake in the marsh before the cave entrance will rise up to attack you. Instead of trying to kill it now, go get a Chocobo instead, who can outrun the snake and enter the cave. Yes, you will still get attacked if the snake touches your chocobo.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: MIDOGARU ZUORUMU (Midgar Zolem?) LV: 26 HP: 4000 MP: 348

This boss has two deadly attacks: one is a tail swipe that knocks a team member off-screen and puts them out of commission for the rest of the battle. The other one is the Beta enemy skill, which inflicts around 1000-1200 points of damage (which spells instant defeat if your allies are weak, although you should try to pick up this skill if you have a Teki no Waza equipped). Along with his bite attack, this serpent can be a tough enemy if you try to fight him earlier in the game. It's easier if you try to defeat him after you have Cid's airplane, since you can use Limit Breaks and powerful summon and magic spells to kill it. Unfortunately, you get a measly amount of EXP, AP, and gil for beating the boss and what's worse, he reappears when you return to the World Map, so you're right back where you started.

The first time you reach here, you'll see a large snake impaled on a tree. Just exit the screen to continue playing. Also, if you get off your chocobo while on the patch of grass before the mine entrance, he'll stay there in case you need to return to the farm (this doesn't seem to happen all the time--I don't know why).

========================================================================= l. MITHRIL MINE / JUNON TOWN =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Ether, Tent, Long Range Attack materia, Mind Up x2, Elixir, Power Wrist, 'Summon Shiva' materia, Shurudan or Potion x6 or Ether x6, Technqiues of the Enemy materia, 1/35 Shin-Ra x x2, Luck Up, Power Up, Guard Up, Speed Up, Silver Edge Glasses or HP Up or Force Eater.

Inside the Mithril Mine, head northeast to find a green Ether on the stone steps. In the chest is a Tent, so be sure to grab it. If you try climbing up the brown vine on the western rock face, you'll find a purple materia (Long Range Attack). Climb back down, return to the first area, then head left. Make your way southeast to find a chest with a Mind Up inside, then head west to reach the next area.

Here, you'll run into some of the Turks again: Ruudo, Iriina, and Shon. Once they leave, walk north. There's a chest with a Elixir inside it and a Hi Potion just to the north of the chest. Return to the area where you met the Turks, climb up the vine, and go through the door to exit the mine and return to the World Map.

Nearby is a rocky outcropping with a huge bird statue atop it, the Condor Fort. Enter it and choose the second option when talking to the man out front. After climbing up the rope, you'll find yourself in a town built into the rock itself. There is a Save Point, item shop, bedroom (you can sleep for free), and Materia shop here. Talk to everyone, then leave and go northwest through the forest to Junon Town by the shore.

Once you arrive at Junon, talk to the villagers, then go down the stairs to the shore. Here, a young girl named Purishira is playing with a dolphin. Out of nowhere, a big flying boss shows up and attacks her, then your party.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: BOTOMUSUWARU (Bottom Swayer) LV: 23 HP: 2500 MP: 100

There's not much to worry about; just attack with Thunder or Poison-based spells and keep your life up. Since this guy's flying, some characters can't attack him (like Tifa), while some can (like Cloud). Find out which guys should be casting magic and which should be attacking early on in the battle. Sometimes, the boss puts an HP-reducing bubble around a character. It only disappears if you cast a magic spell upon it (this won't hurt the 'bubbled' person). If you have the Affect All materia, you can use this to cast a spell on the bubbled person and the boss at the same time. Before dying, the boss will attack with a wave, (he can do this normally, but always does one before he disappears) so watch out and make sure your hp is high enough to withstand an attack. If you want, you can equip characters (like Barett) with weaker, long-ranged weapons so that they can attack the boss, but it may not be worth it. You'll receive a Power Wrist when the battle is over.

After killing the boss, you'll have to revive Purishira. To do this, watch the lung-shaped meter that appears in the upper right. Press the S button once to make the meter start to raise. Just as it reaches the top, press S again to make Cloud breathe into the girl's mouth. It will take a couple of tries. Afterwards, go to the house near the entrance to town and talk to the person there (for some reason, choosing the top option won't make Cloud go to bed, but if you go back in the house and try again, he will go to sleep).

During the night, Cloud will have another bad dream. In the morning, leave and go to the house above the stairs (your friends will be gathered near it). Purishira will give you the 'Summon Shiva' materia, a gift for saving her life. Follow her to the shore, then talk to her a second time. Barett will show up and the girl will keep talking; when you have the chance, choose the middle option. Your goal in this part of the game is to leap atop the iron beam above the electrical tower so that you can sneak into the heart of Junon Town. Your controls are:

X Swim faster S Makes the dolphin flip you into the air

If you get to close to the electric blasts traveling along the tower, you'll get shocked and will have to try again (just pick the second option). The easiest way to get up there is to simply not move and press S. The dolphin will miss and deposit you near the bottom of the screen. However, you'll be perfectly positioned, so if you press X again, Cloud will land on the beam. Once you're on it, head to the left to get a good view of the flying airship 'Highwind'. Make your way south (towards the 'front' of the screen) to continue.

The next area has a higher and lower level. If you investigate the box- like switch, you'll be taken to the lower level. From there, head south to find a building. There is a projecting roof nearby which has a door underneath it; just press against the edge and you'll enter a hallway filled with soldiers. In the halls, go up to find a locker room. Check out the half-open locker and choose the second option to dress up as a guard. When the captain of the guards asks you another question, pick the bottom answer.

Then, leave the locker and take note of the Save Point before heading through the door (follow the other soldiers). Now that you're outside, go into the first alleyway. You'll come across a group of marching soldiers. The head guard will want you to join in and march with them perfectly, so it may take a couple of attempts before this event will end. You also have to move your gun in time with the soldiers by pressing and releasing the O button. Depending on how high or low the counter was during this scene (the one in the lower right-hand corner), you will get the following:

PERCENT NAME TYPE 21% = Shurudan Item 37% - 39% = Potion x6 Item 45% (?) = Ether x6 Item (I'll figure out the rest later....)

Afterwards, you'll have to stand at attention while Rufus and Haidekkaa talk to each other...press in any direction and the captain of the guard will tell you to get back in line. After the rest of the soldiers leave, the captain will give you an option; choose either option and you'll return to the locker room for some training on the next event. There, you can try to follow the captain's orders, if you wish. When he asks you a question, choose the top choice to try training again, or the bottom option to finish the training. Once the soldiers leave, follow them outside.

Now's your chance to do a little shopping and treasure hunting. You'll run into Ruudo in the basement of the first weapon shop, but he won't recognize you in your Shinra guard uniform. Go through the third door and talk to the guard near the back of the room, then jump down to an area with several Shinra guards and some holograms. In the far corner of the room is a yellow materia (Techniques of the Enemy). This place (I believe) is similar to the 'House of Learning' back in Area 7 Town where you could learn about the game's mechanics. On the second floor of the same building, you can get a 1/35 Shin-Ra x and a Mind Up. In the room with the cats nearby is a Luck Up. On the third floor is a red Power Up and a green Guard Up.

If you enter the fourth door on the other side of town, you'll find that that Iriina, Rudo, and Shon of the Turks are here. It's a good thing that you're in that uniform :) Go through the sixth door to find a room with a soldier; you can check the silver trashcan for a message and pick up a yellow Speed Up in the side room. On the floor above, you can pick up another 1/35 Shin-Ra x.

In the next area, Haidekkaa and Rufus show up again. You have to do your salute according to what the captain of the guard tells you to do (remember your training)! At the very end, all you have to do is be facing forward: pressing any button will make you do the 'spinning gun' salute. Unfortunately, the order of commands is random each time you play, so just do your best. Afterwards, you can press the following buttons to make Cloud do funny things:

S Scratch back with gun X Put one leg forward T Shrug Pad Stand at attention

Depending on how well you did during the salute, Heidekkaa will give you an item. Each 'button press' action was worth 10 points, and the final salute was worth 30 points. Changing direction was worth 0 points, but unless you were facing in the correct direction, any action you performed was worth 0 points. Also, performing an action was worth 0 points if you did it too late (although you'll get full points if you do the action early). Your total score determines what you will receive (notice that Rufus' reactions change depending on what item you will be given):

SCORE NAME TYPE 000 - 050 = Silver Edge Glasses Accessory 060 - 090 = HP Up Independent Materia 100 - 190 = Force Eater Weapon (for Cloud) 200 = (I'll figure out this one later....)

After everyone else leaves, Red 13 (who was watching from just inside the boat) will talk to you if you try to leave instead of boarding the boat. Either way, you'll end up joining your friends in the boat's hull.

========================================================================= m. SHIN-RA BOAT =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Ether, Affect All materia, Wind Slasher, White Cape.

Open the treasure chest to get an Ether, and be sure to pick up the blue materia (Affect All). Talk to the people here, then go up on the deck and talk to everyone else; you'll notice that some of them are your companions (don't miss Red 13 :)). The man in white will sell you items if you talk to him. Once you're done, go back down and talk to Aerith, then return to the deck and go all the way to the left; one of the guards has left, allowing you to sneak to the front of the ship.

Here, talk to Barett, who is spying on the Shinra members. After talking to him a couple of times, an alarm will sound. Go back to the center of the boat to find your friends. Then, assemble your party. If you want to change the setup, talk to your friends again. When you're ready, go downstairs and head through the door that the one guard was standing in front of. In the next room, watch out for enemies and climb up the ladder, the walkway leads to a chest with a Wind Slasher inside. Did you get all the items on the boat? When you're ready, go and talk to the captain of the guards. It turns out that he's dead. Then, Sephiroth shows up, and summons a huge monster for you to fight before he flies away.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: JENOBA*BIRTH (Jenova*Birth) LV: 25 HP: 4000 MP: 110

Earth, Flame, and Cold magic work well against it, but don't use Poison. Attack with your Summon Materia and hit it with everything you've got. Keeping your HP up is a priority, since it can use lasers to attack one or all members. Only use physical attacks if you are running low on MP. The boss can cast 'Stop' on a single ally so make sure that you're not too dependent on any one character during the battle. Some Phoenix Tails will also come in handy, since the boss sometimes uses a laser that hits all allies (Terror Laser) twice in a row (which can inflict loads of damage). You'll get a White Cape when the battle is over.

========================================================================= n. COSTA DEL SOL / NEW CONTINENT =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: 'Summon Ifrit' materia, Power Up x2, Motor Drive, Flame Ring, Double Machinegun, Ether Turbo, Transform materia, Wizard Rod, Star Pendant, Gold Needle x2, Phoenix Tail x10, Mind Up, Tent.

Grab the red Materia (Summon Ifrit) after the battle and wait for the boat to dock. Talk to the people here and then go up the stairs. A short automatic sequence follows. In the next area, go into the door to meet a shady guy who will sell you this room for 30,000 gil; you can sleep here for free anytime you want afterwards. Climb down the stairs in the bottom part of the room to reach a basement with a sleeping man. You can get a Power Up and a Motor Drive here, as well as a Flame Ring from the treasure chest. You'll meet Mukkii (from the cabaret in the Wall Market) in the bar, as well as some of his friends. If you go down to the beach, you'll run into Houjou (the scientist you met in the Shinra HQ). You can talk to him if you want, but you won't get anything out of it.

Outside of the town, head through the mountains and across the bridge. You'll find a cave-like entrance. Talk to the man on the hill, then keep heading north. Eventually, you'll reach a walkway that leads to a large Makoro furnace. Head south and follow the train tracks; there's no point in looking around here. Keep going, and you'll come across some curving tracks and a Save Point. As you walk along the tracks, you can get the following items: Double Machinegun, Ether Turbo, and a Transform materia.

These tracks are rickety, and when you walk across them in certain areas a message will appear telling you to press O so that you don't fall through them. It's better to let yourself fall, because you can then hold left or right and rapidly press O to land beneath the tracks. Then, press Up to climb back up. If you landed on the left side of the tracks, you can pick up a Wizard Rod. If you landed in the middle, you can't get anything, but if you landed on the right side, you'll find a Star Pendant. There are three places where you can fall through the tracks, so be sure to get these items.

Take the upper rail path to the next area. Are your friends waiting for you on the lower track? If they're not, then go back and take the lower path. You'll get an option to summon them using the PHS system (NSS). Assuming they're there, take the upper path and keep walking until you find a wooden shed. Enter it and pick the top choice when you're prompted to make a decision. This will lower the tracks on the bottom path. Before returning to the lower rail path and following after your allies, you can walk to the end of the path you're on and climb the wall; you'll hear birds chirping if you're in the right place.

After finding the nest, you can choose to take the treasure in the nest (the top option), or leave the birds alone (the bottom option). If you choose the top option, you're attacked.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- TIPS: KOKATORISU (Cocatrice) LV: 17 HP: 420 MP: 0

This guy's easy; just attack until it dies. You'll get 10 Phoenix Tails should you kill it. You can get two Gold Needles from it; one by stealing, the other by killing it with Metamorphosis.

You'll get 10 Phoenix Tails after the battle is over. Cloud will then return to the train tracks. Keep in mind that this is a one-shot deal; whether you decide to take the treasure or not, you can only make a choice one time. As you're traveling along the lower rail path, you'll see a part where the track splits in two directions. Take the left path (the one that turns back). Walk north (towards the bridge), then right (under the first bridge). It may sound confusing, but you'll end up in a little shack where there's a bunch of items and a man resting on a bulldozer. There's a Mind Up and a Power Up here, and the chest has a Tent inside of it. Leave and follow the other path across the bridge in the next area to reach the town of North Corel.

========================================================================= o. GOLD SAUCER =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Silver Bracelet, 'Summon Ramuh' materia.

There's some merchants here at North Corel and an inn. You can also learn more about Barett here, whether he's in your party or not. When you're done shopping and chatting, go to the sky lift. After Barett has a flashback about his friend Dain, take the lift up to the Gold Saucer. You can return to the World Map by heading right from the bottom area of the town, but there's nothing to do out there (aside from saving your game or riding around on a Chocobo).

You'll see a Save Point in the background of the first area of the Gold Saucer, but you'll need GP (not gil, like what you've been using) to activate it. Pay the man to get in (the first choice is for a one-time entrance, the second choice will let you enter as often as you'd like), and then choose the path of your choice after your companions separate.

If you try to leave the Station Square (the area where you're at; all the areas in the Saucer are divided into 'squares'), Aerith will join you. As you explore the rest of the Gold Saucer, you'll discover that Shinra soldiers are snooping around, looking for Sephiroth. When you're ready to move on, go to the Wonder Square. Here, you'll meet Cait Sith, a would-be fortuneteller. He'll automatically join you since you only have two members (you and your friend) at this point.

Go to the Battle Square and you'll find a bunch of dead bodies; the handiwork of Sephiroth. As you're talking to the few who are still alive, Dio, the proprietor of the Gold Saucer shows up and promptly blames you for the carnage. Cait Sith makes a dash for freedom, but after following him, the party is trapped. Dio and his henchmen then summon three large robots that throw you and your allies through the 'Gateway to Heaven' to a desolate area, the Corel Prison, which lies at the base of the Gold Saucer.

Here, you'll find Barett. After he runs away, examine the dead body and talk to the other guy before going though the southern gate. There is a treasure chest here (in the chamber at the base of the ladder), but it's already opened (anyone know if there's supposed to be something in it that you could have gotten earlier?)

In the second area, talk to everyone here. The building to the far southeast is a bar, and a man inside will sell you items. After looking around here, enter the building to the east (it doesn't matter which entrance you take). Barett will show up once you're inside, as will Tifa and Aerith. After Barett's flashback (in which his best friend falls down a gorge and North Corel is razed to the ground), reassemble your team and go back to the first area. Examine the guard (who is dead), then either leave through the gate. If you exit by going through the area between the gate and the building to the right, you'll end up wandering around in a wasteland until a caravan (the same one that Tifa was captured in) shows up. When it does, pick the top option to get a ride back to the area beyond the gate or choose the bottom option to stay where you are (in the middle of nowhere...you'll have to keep wandering around until the caravan shows up again).

Anyway, once you've gone past the gate, talk to the man out here and go to the _right_. Any other direction leaves you stranded in the desert (read the above paragraph again if you want to get back on track). This takes you to the caryard. Go up from here and you'll run into none other than Dain (the guy from Barett's flashback). He tells Barett about Erenoa and Marin (who is actually his daughter), then (for what reason, I have no idea), decides to attack Barett. In the battle, you're forced to fight using just Barett.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: DAIN LV: 23 HP: 1200 MP: 20

The easiest way to kill this boss is simply let him hit you; his attacks increase your Limit meter quickly. Use the Kaifuku Materia to restore lost life, then hit him with the Heavy Shot when your meter maxes out. A summoning Materia (like Shiva or Ifrit) is also a good way to inflict added damage. Just make sure you have all the MPs you need, and you can win in no time. The boss can pull off a final attack before dying, so keep your life up (but he can't do it if you kill him fast enough). You get a Silver Bracelet for beating him.

After Barett's friend dies, you'll find yourself back in the trailer. After talking to Kooshi (Coach?), you'll be invited to become a Chocobo racer. In the elevator shaft, choose the top option to have the racing process explained to you (NSS), or pick the bottom one to skip it. In the room with the other men, check the alcove by the Chocobo poster for a red Summon Materia (Ramuh). Then, talk to the girl in pink (Esuto) to start racing.

Your controls as a Chocobo racer are:

S Speed Up X Speed Down O Dash (uses up your Dash Meter) Select Switch between Automatic and Manual control R1+R2 Hold these buttons to refill your Dash Meter.

The more you Dash, the slower your walking speed is, so conserve your Dash Meter for when you really need it. You have to keep racing until you win, so get good fast! Esuto will explain the controls to you again prior to the race if you choose the top option, or you can conclude your conversation with her and start racing by choosing the bottom option. If you can't get the hang of it, then just keep racing using the Automatic Sequence mode until you get first place.

After winning, you'll receive the Bagii (Buggy) as first prize, and can now roam freely about the overworld and even pass through shallow rivers! (Look for lighter-shaded fords along the rivers.) Your controls are set up in the following manner:

X Exit buggy O Enter buggy T Main Menu Select/Start World Map (press repeatedly to enlarge/hide map) L1/R1 Rotate view (or return to side view if in overhead view) L2/R2 Change view

You _can_ run into enemies in the buggy, so be careful. Also, you can only return to the Golden Saucer if you take the sky lift from North Corel Town; you can't get there using the buggy. If you go across the river south from the Golden Saucer and look around, you'll find a house on a peninsula; you can't explore it yet, so ignore it for now. BTW, you can return to the desert if you get in the buggy, enter the dirt pit surrounding the Saucer, and touch the houses at the base of the Saucer. However, you'll find that there's nothing to do here but wander through the desert--do so long enough and the same cart that Tifa was abducted in will pull up and offer you a ride back to your vehicle. Choose the top option to accept and the bottom option to stay where you are. And as the help menu indicates, it's possible to return to Junon Town and take the Buggy with you. After you've completed the scenario with Cid, you can explore the house on the penninsula; you can also get Aerith's Level 4 Limit Break manual at that point in the game (see section 14 for details).

========================================================================= p. GONGAGA TOWN / COSMO CANYON =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Fairy Tail, X Potion x2, 'Summon Titan' materia, Certain Kill materia, Additional Effect materia, Ether, Black Megaphone, X Potion, Fairy Ring, Ether Turbo, Confusion/Vizier Rod, Gravity materia (and you can get an Elixir, Magic Up, and the Full Cure materia here from Disc 2 onwards).

Your next goal should be to head south from the Golden Saucer across the river to a forested area. Go into the black structure (it's called Jungle, for some reason). Reno and Ruudo are here. After Iriina shows up and alerts the other Turks to your prescence, you'll be asked a question. No matter what your answer is, you'll have to fight Reno and Ruudo at the same time.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: RENO LV: 22 HP: 2000 MP: 80 RUUDO LV: 23 HP: 2000 MP: 135

Use Summoning spells to even the odds at the start of the round, then go after either one. Once you injure one enough times, he'll leave, then the other one will. It may be better to attack Ruudo, since he can heal himself and Reno, but then again, Reno can inflict more damage. In any case, this fight isn't too hard either way. You'll get a Fairy Tail and a X Potion should you win the battle.

After the Turks leave, head northeast, then go north to reach a pile of scrapped machinery. As you're looking around, Sukaretto and Shon show up in the Shinra helicopter and talk about 'Huge Materia' (which you'll learn more about in Disc 2). After they leave, examine the area where Sukaretto was standing and choose the bottom option to get the 'Summon Titan' materia. Then go back to the first area and head left. In the second area, there is a Certain Kill materia near the left path (which returns you to the World Map). If you take the north path, you'll arrive at Gongaga Town.

Be sure to visit the stores (don't forget that you can climb up the pole in the Accessory Shop to reach a room where you can buy weapons) and get the treasure chests from the inn (X Potion) and the old man's house (White Megaphone). If you go into the far right house, you'll meet an old couple who apparently know Cloud (or someone just like him), and someone else named Zekkusu. When you're done here, return to the World Map. Head southwest, then turn toward the river and go over the shallows, and then make your way up through the mountains to reach Cosmo Canyon. If you try to drive past the town, the buggy will short out, so you don't really have any choice but to enter the town (and you can't get anywhere else without the buggy, so even if you didn't drive it past Cosmo Canyon and entered on foot, it wouldn't matter....)

When you approach the man at the gate, Red 13 will talk to him (he'll either bound up the steps past your party if he's not with you, or he'll just leave your party and start talking if he was with you previously). Everyone here knows Red 13 by the name 'Nanaki'. After Red heads up the stairs, talk to the guard and choose the bottom option to be let into the town (Red 13 will reappear to make sure you guys get in). If he was in your party, you'll have the option to make a new team; otherwise, you can look around town freely. Don't miss the Save Point located in the Tigerlily Arms Shop. In the Item Shop, there is a passage with a red rope across it that prevents you from checking out the room in the back. Keep this place in mind because if you return to Cosmo Canyon in Disc 2 or 3, the rope will have been removed and you can get an Elixir, a Magic Up, and the Full Cure materia orb from the back room.

Eventually head up to the observatory, where you'll run into Red 13 and Buugen Haagen, an old geezer who knows all kinds of things. After Red 13 leaves, go back down and talk to your friends in order to make a new party. Then talk to Red 13 in the room connected to the inn before returning to the observatory. Enter the side door, chat with Buugen Haagen, and you'll see a short FMV sequence.

When it's over, return to the large bonfire to the right of the entrance. Your friends are here. Talk to everyone here, then chat with Red 13 a second time. Buugen Haagen will show up, and you'll make a new group (with Red 13 as a permanent member). If you want someone else, just talk to another ally (it doesn't matter which one). Follow Buugen Haagen back to the sealed door above the weapons shop and talk to him, then choose the top option. He'll open the door for you. Enter and climb down to the very bottom of the shaft, then head left.

In the next area, head right and up until you see a hole facing left*. Enter it and you'll be given an option. Pick the top one to make an opening appear nearby. Go through it, then head up and left. You'll slide on the oil and hit a spiked wall, reducing every member's HP by 500 points. Then go south, through the hole, and head right to reach the Combination materia you couldn't get in the first area (Additional Effect). Go back and carefully _walk_ along the edge of the path to avoid slipping across the oil. Then go right, up, left, down the stairs, and through the underpassage to reach a chest with an Eeteru inside of it. Then return to the stairs and go left, then down to find a second chest containing a Black Megaphone. Then climb back up the stairs and head to the upper-left to leave this area.

* If you enter any of the other three holes, you'll be given the same option, but if you choose the top choice, you'll be attacked. Doing this doesn't seem to alter the level in any way, but you're better off doing this after you've cleared the _whole_ area out instead of doing it right now; I'd rather be safe than sorry, in my opinion.

There are five passages in this area; you only want to take the 2nd and 4th passages from the left. First, take the 4th passage. When you touch the web beyond it, you'll have to fight a giant spider (Stinger). When you've killed it, follow the path north to find a chest with an X Potion inside. Then go back and take the 2nd passage from the left. Kill the Stinger that attacks you when you touch the web and then head left and down. As you're going through the tunnel, hold right and you'll find an alternate path that leads to yet another treasure chest. You'll find a Fairy Ring in it. Go back up to where the web was and walk north to find another web. Past it is the exit, but try holding left and Cloud will go along a passage hidden by the rock that leads to a chest. There's an Ether Turbo inside.

When you approach the giant face in the next cavern, it begins to move and you are attacked.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: GI*NATATAKU LV: 29 HP: 5500 MP: 200

Don't worry about the Soul Fires this boss has with him; just use your Summon Materia, then concentrate on attacking and using Limit Breaks on the big guy himself. If your spell Materia has hit second level, then Cold and Thunder work nicely on him. You don't even need to worry about your life much; the boss can be taken down before any serious damage is done to your party. You'll get a Confusion/Vizier Rod should you be successful in battle.

Grab the spell Materia (Gravity) that's left behind and follow Buugen Haagen up the steps. After the sequence with Red 13 and the other creature (his father, who was transformed into metal or something?), make a new party and leave the town. Don't worry, Red 13 will rejoin you when you try to leave. Oh yes, the Buggy will be working again when you leave Cosmo Canyon.

========================================================================= q. RETURN OF SEPHIROTH =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Luck Up x2, Elixir x2, Platinum Fist, Ether Turbo Silver Megaphone, Twin Viper, Enemy Launcher, Magic Up, Annihilation materia, Rune Blade, Platinum Baretta, Overthrow, Affect All Materia, Attribute Materia, Sniper CR, Jewel Ring, Counter materia (if you open up the safe in the mansion, you can get the Cosmo Memory manual and the 'Summon Odin' materia, not to mention a Key Item (the gold key).

Get in the buggy and continue past Cosmo Canyon. Head north to find a river with a shallow ford you can cross. Past it, the mountains are of a different type than what you usually see. Near them is a small town, Nivelheim. Look familiar? It's the same one Sephiroth and Cloud went to in Cloud's flashback.

First, go into the inn. Talk to the black creature in the back to get a Luck Up. You can get an Elixir from another one of the creatures in the Item Shop, and a second Luck Up if you talk to the small creatures in the upper floor of the southeastern house. The large house to the east is Tifa's home, and you'll be given a Platinum Fist and an Ether Turbo if you talk to the creatures here. There's a piano in Tifa's room that you can fool around with (see section 14 for details).

This next section is optional--you can just continue on through the mountains if you want. However, Sephiroth won't show up in the mansion after you reach Disc 2, meaning you can't nab the Annihilation materia unless you get it from him during the first disc (read below for details).

Now, go into the large mansion at the edge of town. Left of the entrance is a piece of paper written by the Turks (?). It has several hints on it that clue you in to the combination of the safe on the upper floor (but it's useless if you don't know Japanese :)). You can get the 4th number by chosing the blank space beneath the first three tips (look at the paper, choose the top option, then move the cursor down to the blank space and press O).

Head right and look for the sliver of light near the stairway, it's very hard to see. It's an opening that leads to the lower section of another room. There's a chest here, with a Silver Megaphone inside. Go back out and go into the northern door beneath the staircase. In the adjoining hall, head right and and up to find a chest with a Twin Viper in it. To the left is a room with a broken piano (which you could have also reached by looking for the opening near the left staircase in the main room).

Go up the stairs and head left. In the circular room is a chest that has an Enemy Launcher inside. There's nothing in the northern room except for a locked safe--you'll need the right combination in order to open it (see section 14 if you don't know how). If you want to try your luck, examine it with the O button and choose the top option to enter the combination or the bottom option to quit.

Open the safe (or not), then go right and into the right wing of the manor house. If you go up, you'll find a chest with a Magic Up inside. Then go into the lower room and examine the curved wall to open a secret passage. Go down the spiralling walkway, and then head right. If you got the gold key from the safe, you can open the northern door (refer to section 14 for details). Continue to the right to find a libarary. Then go north and you'll run into none other than Sephiroth, who will pelt you with a green materia before flying away. Be sure to get the materia (Annihilation) before leaving the mansion.

Once you're back outside, leave Nivelheim from the northern entrace and contine along until you see a passage leading into the mountains. In the next area, follow the path until it splits, and take the north path, which wraps around the back of a spire and leads to a chest with a Rune Blade inside of it. Now go back and follow the original path. You'll notice that just before the bridge, there's a path that curves away to the north. Follow it up into the mountains and when it curves south, take that path instead of continuing in the same direction. The path curves several times, but eventually you'll make it to the top of the mountain, where you can find a chest with a Platinum Baretta. It may help if you press SELECT so that you can see yourself when a mountain is blocking your view, and if you can't seem to get any further, press in other directions (like down) to scale the back of the mountain.

Go back down to the main path and head up the bridge. Inside the cavern, take the ladder down instead of the tubes, or you won't be able to get all the treasure in this area. You don't have to worry about the large boss near the door just yet. Feel free to make use of the Save Point, then climb back to the top of the area. Enter the pipe labled '2' to end up on a rocky ledge. There's an item bag here with an Overthrow inside; get it and then press down to jump down to a lower ledge, then press down again to reach the floor. Climb back up one last time and go into the pipe labled '4' in order to reach the treasure chest on the bottom ledge below; there's an Affect All materia lying within. Walk against the right edge of the ledge to drop down to the floor.

See the path heading south, just below the path that the boss is blocking? Follow it to go outside, then try to keep walking and you'll drop down to the lower ledge. Following the path here leads to a dead end, so enter the cave instead and take the righthand path once you're inside. Ignore the exit at the other end of the cave and work your way southwest, then go through the small hole. Walk up, then left, then down in order to reach the treasure chest you could see when you first came in here. Inside it is an Elixir. Now go through the exit to arrive at a wooded area. On the ground, to the left of the mass of crystalized Materia is an Attribute materia. Take it and proceed north, going through the opening to go back into the caves.

Inside, head to the right, then go up as far as you can and walk left past the stone walls to reach a chest containing a Sniper CR. Then go back and take the rightmost passage. It goes south and leads you back to the outside. From here, head left (going right leads you to a dead end). You'll eventually end up at the Jenova Plant you visited in Cloud's flashback. There's nothing to do inside the plant, so continue beyond it to the door set in the rock wall. Enter it and you'll end up back in the chamber with the pipes again.

It's true that you could have taken the door and done this entire sequence in reverse, but then you couldn't have scaled the ledge and you would have to go all the way back, instead of taking the express route like you just did :) Now climb down and examine the boss, and it will attack you.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: MATERIAKIIPAA <Materia Keeper> LV: 38 HP: 8400 MP: 300

Don't use Honou-related attacks; it'll only heal him. Red 13's Limit Break B1/1 works well, as does Cloud's B2/1 Limit Break. I'd also suggest using the 'Chocobo and Moogle' materia as much as you can--it's ability to stun this boss is very useful. Physical attacks should do the trick if you have good weapons; save your MPs for healing yourselves. Kealra and Affect All Materia are a good combination (remember to link them when selecting holders) if you want to stay alive, since the boss can inflict 300-800 points of damage with its stabbing/mauling attacks. Also, he can heal himself (around 1000 hp's worth), and use the damaging Tryne skill, which causes about 500 points of damage to all those still alive. If Red's learned his B1/2 break or someone knows Haste, it would be a wise idea to use it at the start of the round. Since the Materia Keeper is one of the few enemies that can use Tryne, it comes highly recommended that you have a Techniques of the Enemy materia equipped so that you can learn this enemy technqiue. You'll get a Jewel Ring should you be victorious.

After the battle is over, examine the purple materia that is left behind in order to take it (Counter). Then follow the path outside--it leads back to the World Map.

========================================================================= r. THE INVENTOR =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Power Up, Riku x syukichikou, Drill Arm, Ejinkooto.

Head southwest, then turn north (you're making a big C around the mountains). Keep walking and you'll see Rocket Town up ahead. In the Accessory Shop, you'll recieve a message if you go to the left end of the counter and examine it (anyone know what it means?) If you go into the house farthest to the right, you can find a chest with a Power Up inside of it in next to the stove. Then talk to the old man standing near the house that's just left of the rocket's launch pad. Talk to him again, and he'll ask you a question. Pick the top answer and the view will pan up to show the rocket. Then the old geezer will give you the Riku x syukichikou; it's a weapon for Cloud.

Go into the house to the right of the old man. This is the home of Shiera and Cid, although neither of them are around at the moment. There's a chest here with a Drill Arm inside it. If you go out the back entrance, you'll find a light airplane in the backyard--it's one of Cid's inventions, the 'Tiny Bronco'. After looking at the airplane, Shiera will show up. When she leaves, go outside and head north to arrive at the rocket--climb inside it to find Cid. After chatting with him, name him. You can then ask him several questions; you have to at least ask the first one (top choice) in order to proceed with the game. Then leave the rocket and return to Cid's house. Shiera will show up, then Cid, too. After Cid goes out back, Shiera will explain how Cid was going to pilot his rocket into outer space some time ago, but aborted the launch when he discovered that Shiera was still making last- minute checks and hadn't left the launch pad yet; she would be burned to ashes since the launch could only be aborted, not delayed. By saving her life, Cid's dreams were shattered, since he did not have the resources to repair the rocket, which tipped over after falling back onto the lauch pad.

Cid comes back into the house, then Parumaa shows up--an employee of Shinra. Go outside and you'll run into Rufus and a Shinra guard, who have come to 'borrow' the Tiny Bronco. After Shiera brings you back inside the house, go out the back entrance to find Parumaa standing atop the Tiny Bronco. Talk to him and he'll attack you.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: PARUMAA <Palmer> LV: 38 HP: 6000 MP: 240

His gun causes a fair amount of damage since it has the effects of Faira, Blizara, and Sandara, so make sure Aerith is in your party or that you have some Recovery Materia. Use Haste and Affect All on your party as well as Slow magic and/or Summon Chocobo on him to even the odds a bit. You'll want to have Cloud's B2/2 by now--it comes in handy. Your prize for beating Palmer is an Ejinkooto.

After the boss gets wasted (heh, heh), your party and Cid will escape on the Tiny Bronco. Although it gets damaged during your escape it can still be used to skim across shallow water and traverse rivers (although you can't go up or down waterfalls). Here are the airplane controls:

X Exit airplane O Enter airplane Select/Start World Map (press repeatedly to enlarge/hide map) L1/R1 Rotate view (or return to side view if in overhead view) L2/R2 Change view

You now have several options that are available to you: you can get Aerith's Level 4 Limit Break manual (see section 14 for details) or go on Yuffie's sub-quest (if you have her in your party, see section 6 for further information). Even if you don't have Yuffie, you can purchase some pretty good weapons and find some treasure chests lying around in Uutai, so you may want to stop there anyways. You can even go back and kill the big snake you had to flee from in section 3k, if you've been itching to do so (you'll now have enough HPs to learn the enemy skill 'Beta' from it without dying). In any case, it would be a good idea to explore other areas and pick up items you missed/buy stuff you couldn't afford before instead of continuing on your quest just yet. I would suggest checking out the excavators' site to the north, since you can pick up the powerful 'Summon Kujata' materia there as well as buy some useful bracelets and items (see section 3u for details).

========================================================================= s. BETRAYAL =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Boudan Chokki, Chocobo Feather, Elixir.

Pilot the Tiny Bronco back to the Gold Saucer area. Go to the weaponsmith's house on the penninsula near the dirt pit and talk to him--he'll explain that you need the Kiiston (Keystone), which he no longer has. Get back in Cid's airplane, and leave it on the shore by the dirt pit. You need to get to the Golden Saucer, so either walk or find a wild Chocobo and ride it back to North Corel. Then take the sky lift up to the Gold Saucer. Go to the Battle Square and look for an opening on the right side of the room labled 'Dio's Show Room'. Inside, examine the glittering object on top of the large stand; it's the Kiiston. Dio, the big lug who threw you out of the Gold Saucer before, will show up and offer you a challenge: fight in the Battle Square and he'll give you the Kiiston. When you have a choice, pick the top option to accept or the bottom option to temporarily decline. You'll now have to fight in the Battle Square using only Cloud. Keep in mind that even if you lose the very first battle, Dio will still give you the Kiiston.

If you want to try and see if you can win all the battles, then keep fighting. After each battle, the message 'GREAT!' will appear, followed by two options. Choose the right option to stop fighting, or the left option to continue fighting. If you choose to continue, a jackpot-like device will appear. You can stop it from spinning by pressing the O button, and whatever comes up when you press O will take affect prior to the start of the next battle. Depening on what you get, different things will happen to you, although certain accessories can render you immune to some of the more debiliating effects.

Furthermore, the status ailments that you are afflicted with as a result of the jackpot stay with you from battle to battle, and you're forced to stop the jackpot after each battle, so you could end up being a poisoned, petrified frog in a few rounds, if you're not careful. If you last through seven battles, then the fighting ends.

Refer to the 'Having Fun' section for a complete explanation of how the Battle Square works, but keep in mind that although you will earn Battle Points during the battle, they are reset to zero when the battle ends since you end up in the Show Room (and the way things work you lose all the Battle Points you earn if you leave the main room at any time). Should you make it through all the battles, Dio will give you a Boudan Chokki and a Chocobo Feather, in addition to the Kiiston.

There's nothing else you need to do at the Gold Saucer now, but when you try to leave, you'll discover that the ropeway that the sky lift travels up and down is broken, leaving you stranded in the Saucer. Cait Sith will either show up (or leave your party, if he's already with you guys) and suggest that you all meet him at the Ghost Hotel. At the Hotel, you and your allies will chat for awhile. In the next scence, you'll find yourself in your room.

At this point in the game, a character will come into your room and ask to go on a date with you. While it's usually Aerith, it's been confirmed that you can go on a date with Tifa instead, if you were nice to her and mean to Aerith throughout the course of the game. It's much harder to do, but if you have had Yuffie in your party for a while, she may wish to date Cloud as well. If you're really mean to all the women in your party, Barett will date you (so be nice!) It's not what you think--just a friendly outing (he had a wife, so what are you thinking ^_^;) I'll write down the exact method to date each character when I learn what they are.

Both times that I've played through this part, it's always been Aerith who comes to ask Cloud to go on a date, so I'll write the next section with her in mind, although you may end up with someone else.

First, you'll go to the Event Square. Since you're the 100th person to come here that day, you and Aerith will be offered a role in the upcoming play. What you do here doesn't affect the game in any way, so just pick whatever options you'd like and watch one of the many humorous endings. If I wrote it out, it would ruin the fun, so.... Next, you'll ride the gondola in the Round Square. When Aerith looks out the window, you can press left to look out, too, and see various FMV sequences showcasing the events at the Gold Saucer.

After the date is over, Cloud and Aerith will return to the Station Square only to find Cait Sith sneaking around with the Kiiston. He'll run away when Cloud yells at him, and you have to chase him around various sections of the Gold Saucer. (If you don't want to waste time doing that, then go to the Chocobo Square, enter it, and chase Cait Sith back outside). Eventually, Cait will stop at the steps outside of the Chocobo Square. The Shinra helicopter shows up, and Cait will toss the Kiiston up to Shon. When confronted by Cloud and Aerith, Cait reveals that he is in fact a spy for the Shinra. He insists that he continues to travel with Cloud and his friends because he has taken Marin as a hostage back in Midgar (Right? That's what he seems to say).

Once Cait Sith leaves, you'll find yourself back in the Ghost Hotel. Check the iron maiden for an Elixir (notice the sound it makes; it sounds just like Norstein Bekkler's laugh [the guy from Chrono Trigger!]). Leave the room to meet up with your allies again. After a brief talk, Aerith will join your party, becoming a permanent member. Pick another ally and then leave the Saucer, since the ropeway is now repaired.

Now that you're back at North Corel, leave and return where you parked the Tiny Bronco. Look at the World Map. See the tiny chain of islands near the bottom of the map? Just to the right of them and to the left of Mideel and the Condor Fort is a large island. If you go there, you'll see a large temple surrounded by a forest. This is your next destination, so land the Tiny Bronco at the shore and head to the temple.

========================================================================= t. THE TEMPLE =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Trident, Mind Up, Silver Jewel Gun, Ether Turbo x2, Rocket Punch, Lucky materia, Metamorphosis materia, Princess Guard, Ribbon, Hou xx, Last Elixir, Nail Bat, Dragon Bracelet, 'Summon Bahamut' materia, Gigas Bracelet.

At the top of the temple is a black creature, similar to the ones you met in Nivelheim. If you talk to it, it floats into the air in a flash of light. Inside the temple, you'll find the Turk, Shon. He was badly wounded by Sephiroth. He gives you the Kiiston so that you can go after his attacker; examine the dais in the center of the room and you'll be transported into the depths of the temple.

This area has a very confusing layout; it's a mass of stairs, walkways and passages. There are chests everywhere, and a kooky old man in a blue robe is also running around down here. From where you arrived, head up, then left, then up again and go down the stairs to the ground level. There's an opening just above you; go in it, turn to the right, then climb down the vines clinging to the wall beneath you. If you run underneath the long staircase nearby, you can reach a treasure chest that has a Trident inside of it. From there, head right, go down the stairs, then turn and climb up the wall using the vines. Head past the opening (which you can't enter at this point, anyway) and go up the stairs. The old man will dash away; ignore him for now and climb up the vines to reach a platform. There's a shiny pink item here (Mind Up). Take it and go down the stairs, then enter the door to your left to find a room with a treasure chest and the old man. Inside the chest is the Silver Jewel Gun. Talk to the geezer twice and he'll offer his services to you:

- Purchase Items - Restore HP and MP to maximum - Save your game* - Nothing

* Choose the top option to decline or the bottom option to accept and save your game.

Outside, go back up the stairs and down the vines, but this time, head down and to the left. You can pick up a green item here (Ether Turbo). Then go down the long stairway. At the bottom, climb down the smaller set of steps to your left, then work your way towards the southwest corner of the screen. Ther's a small patch of vines here that you can climb down. Be sure to open the nearby chest; there's a Rocket Punch inside of it. Now, go down the stairs and walk northeast along the path to find some more vines and the old man, who scampers away when you get too close. Climb up the vines, then go up the stairs next to you, go through the archway, turn east and go down the stairs, and climb up the long stretch of vines on the nearby wall. Head left, underneath the staircase, and you can nab a purple materia (Lucky).

Now, go back the way you came (go right, down the vines, up the stairs and down and out through the archway so that you're back on the path that the old man was standing on, just above the vines). Walk to the east until the path stops, then head south and turn east again to enter the nearby door. As you enter, the old man will dash away. There are huge hollow boulders that are rolling down this walkway. To get past them, time your dashes so that the hollow part will be directly over you, causing Cloud to kneel as the boulder rolls over you. Then keep going until you reach a side path that leads to a pool of water. Grab the Metamorphosis materia near the pool, then continue along the walkway, avoiding the boulders. Once you reach the end of the path, they'll disappear for good, but remember that if you get hit by a boulder, you'll be dragged all the way back to the beginning of the path (ouch!) Alternately, you can wait until the boulders disppear and then go back and pick up the materia after the sequnce with Sephiroth.

Once the boulders are gone, Aerith will sense a powerful prescence in the chamber and return to the pool. Light will erupt from the surface of the pool, and you'll be able to see what I presume is a flashback of Shon and Iriina (both Turks) running around in the shrine. After Iriina leaves, Sephiroth shows up and creates a double of himself. While he busies himself with attacking Shon, the laughing double flies up into the air. After this sequence is over, Sephiroth's double will descend into the pool and then fly away (is this supposed to mean anything?) When you return to the end of the passage, the old geezer will be waiting for you, and will once again offer his help:

- Restore HP and MP to maximum - Save your game - Nothing

When you're ready, go down the stairs. There's a huge room here with twelve doors labeled I to XII. In the center of the room is the ever- annoying talking clock. I was ready to use my FF7 discs as frisbees by the time I figured out how to solve this little 'mini-game'. Here's how it works:

If you press O (Roulette), the hour and minute hands move around very quickly. Even when you press O again to stop the hands, they'll both move three more spaces in the direction they were traveling.

If you press T, you're given two options: one in blue, one in green:

BLUE: This gives you four _more_ options, one in blue, one in green, one in red, and one in white.

- BLUE The hour hand moves ahead by one space. - GREEN The hour hand moves ahead seven spaces. - RED The hour hand moves ahead by 17 spaces. This invariably sets the minute hand ahead by at least one space. - WHITE This does nothing.

GREEN: This gives you _another_ four options, in blue, green, red, and white, respectively.

- BLUE The hour hand moves back by two spaces. - GREEN The hour hand moves back by ten spaces, setting the minute hand back by one. - RED The hour hand moves back by 20 spaces. This makes the minute hand decrease by at least one space, too. - WHITE This does nothing.

If you press X, the damn clock shuts up and you're free to move onto the hands of the clock (providing you've aligned them properly). You can only walk on the hour and minute hands of the clock.

Isn't this fun? Well, there are twelve passages (labeled I to XII), and you get to explore them by setting the clock to various positions. Here's a list of what's in each passage:

I - When you open up the chest, you'll be attacked by monsters. You won't get anything for beating them, either.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- TIPS: JEMINISUMII LV: 24 HP: 800 MP: 80 POIZUNFUROGGU <Poison Frog> LV: 26 HP: 500 MP: 100 POIZUNFUROGGU <Poison Frog> LV: 26 HP: 500 MP: 100

The Poison Frogs are weak against Reiki, so use cold-based attacks/spells on them. Their attacks will turn you into a frog, but they attack so often that it's better for you to wait until they hit you again (turning you back into a human) instead of wasting a Virgin's Kiss or other restorative item. The woman (Jeminisumii) is weak against Poison, so use one of the Bio spells on her for good results. The only point in fighting this battle is if you want to learn Song of the Frog from the frogs (providing you have a Techniques of the Enemy materia equipped).

II - This passage is blocked off by rocks. You can't do anything here, so return and pick another path.

III - A treasure chest. It contains monsters, too. You won't get anything for defeating them.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- TIPS: HEKUTOAIZU <Hecto-Eyes> LV: 30 HP: 500 MP: 220 HEKUTOAIZU <Hecto-Eyes> LV: 30 HP: 500 MP: 220

Both of these red, multi-eyed monsters are weak against Poison, so use the best Bio spell you've got, or simply attack to dispatch them. If you've got Metamorphosis equipped, you can morph both of them into Magic Up items, which is really the only point in fighting this battle. Although weak, either enemy can drain _lots_ of HP from you (around 1200- 1400 points!)

IIII - Shouldn't this be IV? Anyway, there's a chest here, and Aerith's Ultimate Weapon, the Princess Guard is inside.

V - This passage leads outside to the gold chest you could see but not normally reach. Inside it is a Ribbon.

VI - Read below to find out what to do here.

VII - There's a chest here. A weapon for Cait Sith, the Hou xx, is inside it.

VIII - You can get a Last Elixir from the chest in this room.

IX - A passage blocked by fallen rock.

X - This is where you came in, bud!

XI - Yet another blocked passage.

XII - What a creepy room! You'll be seeing more of it soon enough.

At some point, you should stand on the hour or minute hand and let the second hand approach. When it passes over you, it will knock you down into the pit below. When you land, you'll find yourself in a room with a treasure chest. Before you can open it, you'll be ambushed by two monsters.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: ENSHYANTODORAGON <Ancient Dragon> LV: 34 HP: 2400 MP: 450 ENSHYANTODORGAON <Ancient Dragon> LV: 34 HP: 2400 MP: 450 (weak against Gravity)

Using Gravity or some Summon Materia will kill these dragons quickly. Even physical attacks work well. Either enemy can only attack for about 500 points of damage, or use a Sazankurosu (Southern Cross) attack that hit's one enemy for the same amount of damage, so they don't pose too serious a threat. You can also control them, even though they're bosses. You'll win an Ether Turbo for defeating both of them.

In the chest is the Nail Bat, the strongest weapon Cloud can get during Disc 1. Take it and leave the room. You'll find yourself back at the door you couldn't enter earlier (in the area with the vines and staircases. Simply work your way back to the talking clock, and pick up any items you might have missed the first time around.

PASSAGE VI Before going down this passage, make sure you've cleared out the other rooms since you won't be able to go back to them after the next event. When you step out into the open, the bouncing old man will see you and run away. When Aerith asks you a question, pick the bottom answer if you want to return and explore more of the clock puzzle room (NSS), or choose the top answer if you want to hunt down the old man. To find him, simply go through the passages; you want to end up going into a passage that he plans to come out of. You can go down to another set of passages by going to the left end of each ledge and pressing the O button to jump down a level. The passage entrances and exits are random, but you can catch him without too much difficulty. Don't forget to take the chest lying on the lowest level; there's a pair of Army Cotton Gloves inside. As usual, beat the old man at his own game and he'll help you in return:

- Restore HP and MP to maximum - Save your game - Nothing

Now that you've caught the old man, the large door on the top level will open. Go inside and head to the right. You'll encoutner Sephiroth four times. Up to his usual evil, Sephiroth talks about the energy within the temple as he as swings his sword around, his every motion trailed by the double that he made earlier. After disappearing, Cloud will suffer from some sort of fit (something about the Materia taking over his body?) After coming to his senses, the party examines a mural on the wall which shows a meteorite speeding towards the people of the earth. Aerith talks about the spell 'Meteo' which Sephiroth is planning to cast, when the party hears Sephiroth's voice. The temple starts to shake, and a large red dragon appears and attacks the allies.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: REDDODORAGON <Red Dragon> LV: 39 HP: 6800 MP: 300

Slow the dragon and Haste yourself to gain the upper hand. Some Summon Materia will also even the odds, but don't use Kujata since it will heal the boss by about 2100 points. Also, Gravity won't work against it. Limit Breaks and physical attacks should do the trick. You'll win a Dragon Bracelet should you win the battle.

Pick up the summon materia that's left behind (Bahamut). Then go back and examine the floating gold object on the dais. Aerith refers to it as the 'Kuro Materia' (Black Materia) but it's _gold_...in any case, Aerith will then ask you a question. It doesn't matter which answer you choose. At this point, if Cait Sith isn't in your party, you'll here a ringing sound and Cloud will answer the PHS phone. Cait will talk to him through the phone. If he is in you party, then he starts hopping around and talking to you. When he finishes, leave this chamber, let the old man heal you if you need it, then go back to the clock room. The only direction you can go in is straight up through passage XII. When you examine the door in the room beyond, yet another boss appears to finish you off.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: DEMONZUGEITO <Demon's Gate> LV: 45 HP: 10000 MP: 400

The bad news is that the boss can hit for lots of damage. The good news is that most of his attacks (especially the earthquake and body slam attack) quickly max out your Limit bars. Now's a good time to try out the Bahamut materia, but most other Summon materia don't do much damage. Make good use of Aerith's B1/1 and Cloud's B2/2, and you'll want to Barrier and Haste yourselves. Luckily, this boss can't instantly kill you as a similar boss in FF2 could. You'll win a Gigas Bracelet from this boss if you're victorious.

Once the boss is defeated, Cait Sith will have an animated conversation with your party. If he's not in your group, then he bursts out of the door and starts talking. He'll then return to the chamber where the Black Materia was and take it. Afterwards, the entire temple vanishes! In the following scene, Cloud and Aerith go down into the foundation of the temple and retrieve the Black Materia, but Sephiroth shows up and forces Cloud to give the Materia to him. During this time, you control a ghostly image of Cloud as a child. If you stand in Cloud's path and keep talking to him, you'll prevent him from approaching Sephiroth, but there's no point in doing this since Cloud will continue to advance until you give up. After Cloud gives Sephiroth the Black Materia, he will attack Aerith (and you can't do anything about that, either). Cait Sith will show up (actually Cait Sith 2--the same person, but with a new robot body since the first one got trashed when the temple was destroyed. He sure got there fast, huh?) Then your other party member will leap down and prevent Cloud from killing Aerith.

After what I take to be a dream sequence, you'll awake in, of all places, the inn at Gongaga Town, with Barett and Tifa by your side. Answer Barett's question any way you like, then go outside. Tifa and Barett will join your party, but you don't have to keep them as permanent members. Look for the Tiny Bronco on the southern shore near Gongaga Town.

Also, Aerith has left your party for good. However, you'll have all of her weapons, equipment, accessories and materia in your item menu. Now, you need to go to the forest that you saw in Cloud's dream. First, get in the Tiny Bronco.

========================================================================= u. EXCAVATORS' SITE / THE FOREST =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: 'Summon Kujata' materia, Water Ring.

Make your way up to the Northern Continent by going around the left side of the Western Continent after going along the river by the Gold Saucer.

Head to the right edge of the continent, where you'll find a forest surrounded by mountains. In the middle of the forest is a big rib cage and a large skull. Approach it, and you'll find yourself in a excavation site where a bunch of archaeologists spend their time digging. Before doing anything else, you might want to head up the ladder and go through the hole in the back to reach a forest, the same one from Cloud's dream. Keep walking until you reach the second forest screen. If you stand here for a moment, you'll see a red Materia floating on the left side of the screen. It will switch to the right side and back again every few seconds. Try to predict where it will show up and use the O button to grab it. Your reward is the Summon Kujata materia. If you try to continue through the forest, you'll find that this screen repeats endlessly. So, go back outside. Before going on to the next part of the game, you may want to buy some bracelets and items; talk to the man sitting near the rib cage and pick the second option in order to buy things from him.

What you need to do at this point in the game is comission one of the men to dig up the Runahaapu (Luna Harp) for you. As long as you have it in your possession, you're able to pass through the 'endless' forest.

- First, talk to the man sitting just outside of the rib-cage room. Pick the first option twice*. The screen will fade out.

- When the screen fades back in, all the men will be gone. What you do is choose a place where you want a digger to stand and press the S button. It costs 100 gil to place a digger. Use the top option to place a digger, or the bottom option to quit. You can place up to five diggers.

- You'll quit once you choose the bottom option or after you've placed five diggers. Now, press the S button to set off an explosion. You'll hear a music cue, and the diggers will turn in different directions.

- Stand where you want one of the diggers to search through the night and press S again after clearing the dialogue box. You'll find yourself back at the bottom of the screen the next morning. The treasure chest nearby will be closed, and it may or may not hold an item, depending on where you chose to dig.

- The key to getting the right item is to watch the diggers after the explosion occurs. They'll all look toward the location of the item you need, so try placing them in compass-point style layout so that you can follow their vision to the place where the item lies. If you're really stuck, the Runahaapo lies just a little ways to the west and ever so slightly south of the tent on the upper ledge.

* Normally, the first option is used to dig for the Runahaapu (all the diggers will look in the direction of the harp). The other two options are used to dig up other items (the diggers will look in the direction of the closest item/next item to be found). But not only do you not have to place diggers in order to find an item, but you can use any of the three choice to dig up the Runahaapu or any other item--it's just that the diggers won't look in the correct direction if you don't use the first option, and you can't use the first option after obtaining the Runahaapu.

How do you know if you got the right item? Well, it will show up on the Key Item menu (where the important stuff like the PHS is kept). Also, if you talk to the digger sitting by the room, and choose the first option twice, he won't let you select and place diggers. Finally, try going into the forest. If the screen turns green, then you've got the right item.

When you've got Runahaapu, go into the forest. When you reach the second area, the screen changes to a green color, and the forest will no longer repeat. Beyond the forest is a rocky area. First, go under the tree trunk to reach the treasure chest with a Water Ring inside. Climb up the rocks near the pink mass of coral, then go through the fallen trunk and head north to reach the next area (you can't climb up the vine in the first area, so ignore it). Walk along the curving path and you'll find yourself back in the World Map, in the canyon near the forest. Head straight forward to the top-like object to continue your quest.

========================================================================= v. ANCIENT CITY =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Magic Up, Aurora Bracelet, Meteorite materia, Guard Up, Elixir, Techniques of the Enemy materia, Wizard Brace.

This area looks a lot like the floor of the sea; there's shells and coral everywhere. At the crossroads, take the left path. It leads to a stone building--inisde of the building is a Save Point, and there's a chest on the upper ledge with a Magic Up inside it. Leave the building and continue past it, following the path east into the rock face. Inside, go down the stairs and head all the way right to find a chest with an Aurora Bracelet in it. You can check out the blue crystal if you want, but there's nothing you can do with it at this point in the game. Return to the crossroads and take the middle path. Enter the shell building and climb the spiraling walkway to the very to to find a green materia lying on the ground (Meteorite). Go back to the crossroads yet again and take the right road. It leads to an area with several shell buildings. Go all the way to the right, then go north to enter the building before you. Climb all the way to the top level. There's a chest here containing a Guard Up.

There's nothing else to do in this area but enter the last shell house; your friends won't let you take the path leading out of the city, and the main path leads to another part of the chamber with the blue crystal, but there's nothing you can do there. So, if you're ready to proceed, enter the shell house to the right of the main path. On the ground floor is a chest holding an Elixir. Take it and climb up the ladder. When you approach the beds, you'll be given an option. You can choose the bottom option, grab the yellow materia behind the headboard of the third bed (Techniques of the Enemy), exit the house, then enter it again, approach the beds, and choose the top option to go to sleep. Or, you can just pick the top option the first time around, go to sleep, and when you wake up in the night, grab the materia (it's easier to see at night, too). Originally, I though this was a 'bug' materia (don't I feel silly now), but it's not.

No matter what you decide to do, go to sleep when you're ready to. You'll wake up in the middle of the night. After Cloud's companions join him, return to the crossroads a final time and take the middle path again. When you enter the shell building, the fish floating in the middle of the spiraling passageway will have disappeared; there are blue steps in it's place. Go down them and you'll find yourself in an underwater palace. At the bottom of the stairs, leave the building and take note of the Save Point before going down both sets of stairs below.

Aerith's here, and you have to get to her by jumping across several pillars. Press in the direction of the next pillar to get proceed, but you'll have to use just Cloud; your allies will wait for you back on the ground. Once you get close to Aerith, Cloud has another spastic fit and will draw his sword. You can press the controller and the buttons to make Cloud do different things, but pressing O three times will make him try to strike Aerith. Luckily, he'll come to his senses beforehand with some help from his friends, but Sephiroth makes an appearance and attacks Aerith. After her death, Sephiroth escapes, leaving behind another monster in his wake.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: JENOBA*LIFE <Jenova*Life> LV: 50 HP: 10000 MP: 300

This boss is weak against earth attacks, so use Earth and Titan. Also, Meteorite, Bahamut, and Kujata all work very well. Physical attacks do a surprising amount of damage. The boss will cast Reflect on itself the first time you cast a spell on it, so be wary about using spells too often. Jenova*Life's attacks are not that strong (about 400-700 points), but it has an ultra-deadly blue bubble attack (Aqua Breath) that inflicts +1500 damage to each character. Be sure to have some Recovery Materia handy. Considering it's the last boss on this disc, this is not a very hard battle. You'll get a Wizard Brace when you win the battle.

After beating the boss, there's another FMV sequence, then you're given the option to save your game. Guess what? You just finished Disc One! My times (if you're interested, and even if you're not :)) were 29:04 initially, and 25:20 for the rewrite.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++
WALKTHROUGH - DISC TWO
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++

========================================================================= a. THE CAVE =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Serpent Halberd, Thunder Bracelet, Hypno-Crown, Last Elixir, Magical materia, Power Up.

You'll start off outside of one of the shell-shaped buildings on the east side of the Ancient City. If you walk to the left, Cloud will have another attack and you'll see the ghostly form of Sephiroth leaving the Ancient City. Once Cloud has recovered, follow Sephiroth by heading north, then east along the path you couldn't take before. Note that you're free to go back through the Forest and return to the World Map, but there's no point in doing so unless you wanted to buy some items or find Vincent or Yuffie (unless you already have them). Although you're now on Disc 2, none of the other events that occur in this disc will actually happen until you get the Highwind in section 4e (meaning that if you were to return to the World Map, you couldn't go on the Huge materia quests yet, dig up the Gate 5 Key, or bring Buugen Haagen back to the Ancient City).

In the next area, ignore the white, spiked object for a moment. Instead, walk behind it (look for a path to your left). This will allow you to reach a chest containing a Serpent Halberd (a weapon for Cid). Once you've gotten it, climb up the spiky object. It's a little tricky to navigate due to it's spiraling shape, but you'll eventually reach a cave entrace after making your way to the top.

Inside, walk to the left and press against the second cleft in the wall. You'll climb to the top and be given two options (Right or Left). Pick the bottom option (Left). Walk over to the next cleft and climb up it, then choose the bottom option when you reach the top to land on a litte ledge with a chest above it. You can open the chest from where you are; there's a Thunder Bracelet inside. Face the cleft and choose the bottom choice, then the top one to jump to the other side. Now, go to the right and when two options appear, pick the bottom one. This lets you climb down to where the first chest is; there's a Hypno-Crown inside of it. Climb back up to the top of the cleft, pick the bottom option, then press against it to try and get back on. When two optoins appear, choose the top one. Then, make your way up to the ledge with the chest, and pick the top option. You can now take the Last Elixir from inside the chest. Get back into the cleft and choose the bottom option to jump to the west side of the path. Work your way to the left, climb up the cleft, and head left a second time to reach a long ladder. Selecting the bottom option will left you climb down to the bottom of the ladder.

If you search using the O button, you'll find a purple materia (Magical) near the lower-left corner of the screen. When you approach the ladder, you'll automatically climb up to the ledge you were at. Now pick the top option after nearing the ladder and climb all the way to the top. Once you're off the ladder, run to the right and go through the opening on the north wall. In the next room, take the contents of the treasure chest (Power Up) before exiting through the far opening to the northwest.

Once outside, keep to the east. After heading along the coastline for a while, you'll come across a sharp curve that turns to the west. Just beyond it is a village and a deep valley, which you can't enter without exploring the village (Icicle Lodge) first.

========================================================================= b. ICICLE LODGE =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: X Potion, Ei x no Kusuri, Vaccine, Ether Turbo.

Go to the far end of town and talk to the man in purple standing near the trees. Pick the top option. Two Shin-Ra members will show up, along with Iriina (a Turk). After confronting Cloud, she will try to knock him out. To avoid her strike, press left just after you see the transparent message box. If she does hit you, you'll wake up in one of the houses, but if she doesn't, then she'll roll right out of the town. It doesn't make a difference whether you get hit or not.

After that's done with, go to town entrance and check out the house that's just to your right. In the back room, there's a boy, a cat, and a snowboard. Talk to the boy and the cat will leave the room, enabling you to take the snowboard by examining it. You'll need it for the upcoming event. Now, go to the inn, head to the upper floor, and examine the window in the lower left-hand corner to get an X Potion. Leave and enter the house on the far right (near the snowman). Take the items in the back room (an Ei x no Kusuri and a Vaccine), then examine the map on the wall in the main room. You can examine it by choosing the top option, but before you leave, you'll want to choose the bottom option to take it.

Finally, go into the house on the left side of town, just to the right of the weapons shop. If Iriina KO'd you, this is where you'll wake up :) If you go down the stairs and look by the windowsill, you can get another item (Ether Turbo). You can also take a look at the machinery on the ground floor to see a series of pre-recorded videos dating back many years ago; they show Aerith's mother (Ifaruna, a Setora just like Aerith) and her father, a 'renegade' Shin-Ra scientist named Gasuto (Gast). There are several videos, but watching them has no effect on the game itself, aside from cluing you in to Aerith's past (providing you can read it :)) There's a device to the left that will allow more light into the room, but it doesn't seem to have any purpose (NSS).

Before you leave the town, you may want to buy weapons, Hi Potions and Tents at the shop. When you're ready to go, simply walk past the man in the back of town (the one near the trees), and the snowboard sequence will start up:

Your controls while using the snowboard are:

S Brake X Jump Pad Move left or right, down to brake Start Pause/unpause L1/R1 Quick turn to the left or right when used with control pad

Basically, you want to make your way through the mountains. You can collect balloons along the way, but I don't know what they do for you. There are also obstacles to crash into, like dead wood, pine trees, igloos, moogles, snowmen, rocks, ice boulders, and chocobos. I believe there are four different 'exit' paths; I'll take the left path twice and go from there in this FAQ.

My characters came to in a white forest. Did yours? From this point onward, you can press S to look at the map you took (but not in some screens), which shows where you need to go but not where you are. I spent hours trying to map this place out, only to discover that there's almost nothing of interest in this area. So, I've simply described each location and where it is on the map; getting there isn't much of a problem. Your ultimate goal, BTW, is to make it to the red check mark shown on the map.

The locations are:

ENTRANCE (looks like a square at the bottom-center of the screen) Heading south from this area takes you back out to the World Map. If you return to Icicle Lodge to heal yourself, you'll have to snowboard in here again.

MOUNTAIN CAVE (small opening just to the right of the ENTRANCE) You can hop across the ledges to the top of the screen, but in the next room, there's nothing to do but choose to fall/not fall down an icy chute that has no effect aside from ejecting you back into the world map. The entrance to this cave is hard to see; it's in the lower-right area of the T-junction screen. You can also get here by going right from the LAKE CAVE area.

FOREST (forest divided by Y-shaped paths) In the main forest screen, there's an item (Mind Up) at the foot of a tree near the upper left part of the screen. If this is where you landed after the snowboarding event, then it's just up and to the right of where you crashed.

BURIED AIRPLANE (tail of plane sticking out to left of forest) Nothing here.

LAKE CAVE (cave in the middle of the central lake) On the surface of the frozen lake, near the shore, there is a green item (a Potion). Be sure to get it. Then head to the left to reach a screen full of ice floes. Here, you'll have to jump on the floating ice chunks to get across, but the chunks surrounding the one you're currently standing on will submerge or raise depending on how they looked when you arrived there. If you mess up and they are all submerged, you'll have to start all over. The key is to make sure that you're not jumping onto a floe when the ones surrounding it are all raised, or else they'll all submerge and you'll fall into the water. To get on the ice floats, choose the top option, then use the O button and the controller to jump around. Enter the cave in the next area, grab the item bag (it contains a Safety Bit accessory), and leave.

LONE TREE (pine tree up and right from the LAKE CAVE) Nothing here, either.

ICE BOULDERS (northwest corner, left and below the STONE FACE) Go into the small cave entrance and grab the item in the northwest corner of the cavern (an Elixir), then go out the other entrance.

RIVER LOG (above central lake, at mouth of river) There's nothing here.

STONE FACE (left of the red check mark) Nothing here. Seem familiar? The stone face has also appeared in Secret of Mana and FF5j.

STEAMING LAKES (south and east of the check mark) You can touch the water on the lefthand bank if you want. In fact, you should, since you can't get the Alexander Materia any other way. (Keep reading for details.) Just maneuver yourself as close to the shore of the left lake as you can, and when an option appears, pick the top one.

MOUNTAIN CROSSROADS (top of mountain east of the STEAMING LAKES) Once you reach the crossroads (da dum da da :)) head to the upper right corner of the screen to go off the map. In the next area, work your way up and to the left. When this screen repeats a second time, look for a Blue Materia (Slice in Addition) near the beginning of the screen, in the upper-right part of the path. This road takes you to the Steaming Lakes area, but if you try to back the way you came, you'll see that the screen has changed. Put another way, you couldn't have gotten the Materia unless you took this path since the 'switching' road isn't marked on the map.

If you're fast, you can reach the 'lost in the snowfield' section (the red checkmark) before anything bad happens. But if you waste your time in this area, you'll pass out. (This will still happen to you even if you reached the snowfield, but then returned to any part of the 'first area'. If that happens, go to the next section. If you made it to the snowfield area, then skip the first paragraph to find out where you are.

Personally, my suggestion is that you follow the example in the FAQ and take the left path twice so that you land in the Forest. From there, you can go right to the Lake Cave area, then continue right past the Mountain Cave area (the T-junction), and up into the Mountain Crossroads, where you can take the switching path to the Steaming Lakes, and then head left into the snowfield. Not only is this a fast way to get through this area, but it also lets you pick up all the items along the way and get the Alexander Materia later on (since you touched the lake on your way out).

Also, you'll start off at the bottom end of the snowfield when you first get there, so you can just head up to the cave to get the Blue Materia, then keep heading north to reach the old man's shack (if you're in need of healing and a Save Point). After talking with him, you can go to the Stone Face Area, head south to the Ice Boulders area where an Elixir is, then backtrack to the snowfield and go to the right in order to get the Alexander Materia before returning to the shack. Voila! You've just cleared out this _entire_ area in only a few minutes!

Remember, you _will_ pass out eventually if you return to the first area--there's nothing you can do about it, even if you've already gone to Horuzofu's shack. If you don't want to waste too much time backtracking just run around in the same few areas until it happens, then leave the old man's shack and continue exploring. Why this still happens to you after clearing out this area doesn't seem to make much sense, as it's more of a nuisance than anything else, but there's not much you can do about it. If you return to the first area after falling unconsious and wait around there again, you'll pass out a second time. In fact, this will always happen to you, so get moving!

========================================================================= c. LOST IN THE SNOW =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Affect All Materia, Sacred, Alexander Materia.

You'll awake in the house of an old man (Horuzofu). Go up the stairs and let the old man talk to you; choose the bottom option twice when he asks you two questions. When you wake up the next morning, check out the Save Point (since you probably haven't saved prior to entering the Icicle Lodge). If you want to spend the night again, talk to the old man in the first room and choose the top choice. When you leave the shack, your friends will be waiting outside. Make a new party if you wish, (see below for directions) then head south. You may have noticed that you can talk to the man from the ground floor even though he is above you :)

If you _didn't_ pass out, then go directly to the shack so that you won't pass out. There, you'll meet an old hermit named Horuzofu. Talk to him, and when he asks you a question, answer any way you like. The second time he asks you a question, choose the bottom reply. You'll spend the night at his shack, and when you leave the next morning, your allies will be standing around outside. Choose either choice when an option appears. Then talk to any member and pick the top option to accept a party change or the bottom option to decline, if you want to change your members.

If you don't want to explore the snowfield any more, skip to section d. After all, you can return here at any future point in the game, providing you have the Highwind.

Outside, you'll be in a large snowfield. Use the O button to set down spikes that you can use to track your location (since your direction changes when the wind picks up). If you want to explore the rest of that first area that you left/passed out in, head south. When you leave the first area from the Steaming Lakes exit, you'll see a rock formation with a cave entrance if you keep walking north. Inside, a Blue Materia (Affect All) is lying near the tent. What's odd is that you seem to always run into this on your way back from the first area instead of on the way to it (i.e. from the old man's shack).

If you head east, you'll go through some snowy areas, then arrive at a cave entrance. Talk to the purple fellow inside to enter a battle, but only if you touched the water back at the Steaming Lakes.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: SUNOU <Snow> LV: 32 HP: 4000 MP: 160 (weak against Flame)

You can't Control or Metamorphosis her, but you can steal a Saakuretto (Sacred) during the battle. Her cold-based attacks (Cold Breath and Blizzard 2) are nothing to worry about, but be careful if she charms one of your own members.

If you are victorious, she'll disappear and a Summon Materia (Alexander) will drop to the floor, so don't miss it. While you can use the map here, you can't reach this place normally from the first area. If you go right, then down the snowy path, you'll end up at the 'switching' crossroads in the first area, though (sort of like a one-way path).

Going west from the snowfield takes you to an alternate entrance to the first area. There's not that much to do there, anyway, unless you want a shortcut to the ICE BOULDERS area where an item is lying in a cave (refer to the previous section for more information).

So no matter how far you are along a boundary, you'll still enter that area when you hit it. The same applies to the corners -- you'll hit one boundary or the other, so going in a diagonal direction won't get you to a new place. Don't worry about finding an 'exact' spot to enter an area, just head in that direction. The only real landmark is the cave with the Affect All materia, but if you head north from the Steaming Lakes exit, you're bound to spot it.

========================================================================= d. THE CRATER / TORNADO LABYRINTH =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Ribbon, Javelin, Elixir, Ardent Flame Bracelet, Last Elixir, Speed Up, Enhance Sword, Fang of Dragon Pair, Bahamut Reborn, Ether, Hi Potion, Kaiser Knuckle, Reflect Ring, MP Turbo materia, Poison Ring.

Once you've had your fun in the snowfield, return to the old man's house and heal up or save your game if you need to. Then, go north from the shack to arrive at the slopes of a icy mountain. Keep in mind that you can't explore this area at any time other than right now in Disc 2, so make sure to get all the items and other stuff.

Now, get ready for some finger-smashing fun! the meter that appears on screen when you're outside is your body temperature (the kanji you see by the numbers, 'do' actually means 'degrees'): it goes down because of the cold climate. To keep your temperature up, you need to rapidly hit the S button. The highest temperature you can get to is 38, while the lowest is 27. Any less than that (26), and you pass out and find yourself back in the old man's house. It sounds like keeping your heat up is easy, but you can only increase it when you're on one of the ledges, not while you're climbing up the rock face. So for those long climbs, you have to max out your heat and climb as quickly as you can. Luckily, your heat doesn't go down during a battle. Remember, it's not how hard you press the S button, but how fast you press it, so try to get in as many presses as you can to max out your temperature. If you'd rather cheat, refer to the Game Shark code section in the second part of this FAQ--one of my 'fix-all' codes is in there that will give you a high body heat no matter how long you stand around.

In this area, there's nowhere else to go but up, so climb along the rock face until you arrive at the cave entrance, pausing at each ledge to restore your body heat. Always keep an eye out for the red flags; they indicate which part of the wall you can climb. Inside, go through the two archways into the next cavern. Here, climb up the stairs and go through the south exit. In the adjoining area, walk all the way to the right to find a hidden chamber with a chest; inside it is a Ribbon. Then return to the main path and head north, then west, through the entrance. Cross the icy bridge in the third cavern and press the SELECT button to bring up the cursor; it'll help you navigate through the twsiting passage before you. Once you reach the top, examine the boulder and choose the top option when it presents itself. This will make you push the boulder and free up the blocked passage beneath you. You can still move while the boulder is rolling--notice that you can stand right where it falls and you will recieve no damage (then again, Cloud is the same guy who can run around in the cold wearing a sleeveless shirt and not die of hypothermia...must be those corn flakes).

Go back to the other room (where you got the Ribbon), and open the purple chest to the northeast; there's a Javelin lying inside it. Now, return to the room that you exited from the south (the one with the formerly blocked passage), and go north along the passage until you reach another exit. This leads to the upper path above the chest with the Javelin--keep following it and you'll find yourself outside.

Build up your temperature, then climb up the wall. After going a short distance, you're given a choice (up, down, or right). Pick the top option (up), and head up until you reach a ledge. Keep climbing upward, and you'll be prompted with another choice (right or down). Pick the top option and head right to arrive at another ledge. Then climb up until you raech the next ledge; it has a path going left and an unmarked path that goes to the right (i.e. there's no flag by it). The right path is a dead end, so take the left path and keep climbing up along the wall (you'll find another ledge on the way) until you reach a second cave entrace.

This large cavern is pocked with holes. There's an exit and a treasure chest, but they are too high to reach, at the moment. Don't miss the Save Point between the chest and the exit. Nab the other chest in the lower right corner of the room (there's an Elixir inside of it), then go north from the chest to find a passage that leads outside. Once you're out in the open again, head north, then go around the bend and head south and east.

In the next room, examine the area immediately to the right to find a chest with an Ardent Flame Bracelet inside. There are four huge icicles here that you need to knock into the holes in the lower cavern. This is done by 'fighting' them. Each icicle is guarded by several yellow bats.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- TIPS: TSURARA <Icicle> LEVEL: 30 HP: 3000 MP: 300 (weak agains Flame, Earth, and Gravity) IBIRUHEDDO <Ibil Head?> LEVEL: 28 HP: 740 MP: 45

The icicle (Tsurara) can counter with 'Tsurara Otoshi' (Icicle Drop). It will do this to any person who attacks it, tries to steal from it, or the like. You don't have to kill the bats in order to win the battle (all you have to do is 'kill' the icicle), but since they can Silence your characters and recover HP when they attack you, you may want to get them out of the way before attacking the icicle. Killing the icicle is worth 500 exp, 0 AP, and 0 gil, so if you want some AP and gil, you may want to kill the Ibiruheddos (which, incidentally, you can Metamorphosis into Holy Torches.

Each time you win a battle, you'll be given an option. If you pick the bottom choice, you'll drop down to the room below, while picking the top choice lets you stay where you are (so you can continue to 'fight' the other icicles. After knocking down the last icicle, choose to stay where you are so that you can get the chest on the far left (it has a Last Elixir inside). Then, go back along the path. Just before you reach the door, an option appears; pick the bottom choice to jump down to the room below.

When the icicles drop down here, the floor of the cavern is 'raised'. After knocking down 3 of them, you can reach the exit, knock down all 4 and you can get the chest on the ledge in the upper left corner of the room (which contains a Speed Up). When you're ready, go through the now-avilable exit by hopping across the stones. This leads to the left side of the outer path. Be sure to examine the chest that's here to get an Enhance Sword, then follow the path as it curves back on itself and leads to the lower passage in the icicle room.

Keep following the path, and you'll find yourself on the side of the mountain yet again. Grab the rock face and climb to the right. After a while, three options will appear (up, left, or right). Pick the bottom choice and keep holding right to make Cloud ascend the side of the mountain. When you reach the next ledge, raise your temperature and take the path that leads to the left. As you're climbing, another set of options will appear (up, down, or right). Choose the top option and keep climbing up. Once you've made it beyond the second ledge, you'll find a final cave entrance.

This area has a hard-to-miss Save Point in it, and if you examine the nearby pool of light, your HP and MP will be completely restored, and all dead characters will be revived. Now is a perfect time to stock up on goodies--you can use the pool to stay healthy while fighting the enemies for exp, AP, and gil, and you can learn Smelly Breath from the Molbols just outside (be sure to wear a Ribbon!) Plus, you can win Dragon Bracelets from the Blue Dragons in this cave, which will halve damage taken from Flame, Cold, or Thunder attacks, and win Molbol Tentacles from defeated Molbols. There's a boss encounter coming your way, so make sure you're ready to do battle, then exit the chamber by going to the far right.

In the adjoining hallway, you'll see one of those shrouded creatures (similar to the ones in Nivelheim be thrown to the floor. Before you have a chance to examine it, you'll be attacked by a two-headed boss.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: TSUINHEDDO <TwinHead: Right Neck> LV: 43 HP: 18000 MP: 350 TSUINHEDDO <TwinHead: Left Neck> LV: 43 HP: 18000 MP: 350

In case you're confused, the 'right head' is the scaly one, and the 'left head' is the one with horns. Anyway, you should have the Aurora, Dragon, and Ardent Flame bracelets equipped on your members to reduce damage from the scaly head's flame breath and the horned head's ice breath. Use Mabarrier to up your defense, then Haste yourselves. Try using Earth and Meteorite spells, as well and summonings, like Alexander, Leviathan, and Bahamut to soften the boss up. However, don't use Poison (which does no damage) or the Kujata summon spell (which will heal both heads). Ice works well on the scaly head, and Flame works well on the horned head, but don't confuse the two since you will heal a head instead of hurt it. You may also want to use Tsuika Kouka and attack a Flame or Cold materia in order to attack with that sort of element (but don't attack the other head, for the same reason). In addition to breath attacks, the boss can also use a dual cold/flame breath attack, it can cast Quega, and has an explosion type attack that will inflict around 1400 damage to all members. It will use this attack when each head is killed (so you will have to deal with it twice during the battle, once when you kill one head, and then again when you kill the other). I highly advise that you concentrate on one head at first instead of trying to kill them both at the same time because this attack _will_ kill your pary if it happens in succession (which means you lose). When it's defeated, you'll get a Fang of Dragon Pair from the boss.

If you were badly beaten during the fight, you can always return to the room with the pool to heal yourselves. Otherwise, continue down the passage; it leads outside (Cloud sure moves slow out here, doesn't he?) Then climb the icy wall up to the top, where an automatic sequence will play. After it finishes, head along the side of the inner crater. In the next area, Tifa will talk with you if she's in your party; if she isn't, she'll promptly appear and insist on coming with you, which means you'll have to kick a member out of your current group. Head to the left.

In the next area, climb down to the lower path and look for a red materia (Bahamut Reborn) near the bottom edge of the screen. You can't do anything about the shrouded guy leaping off-screen, so ignore him. After getting the materia, you can hop up to a small island of rock where there is a Save Point. When you're done there, jump up again to return to the top path, and walk to the left. You'll see a short intermission with the three heads of Shin-Ra and several scientists heading towards the Crater in the Highwind, the airship you saw back in Junon Town.

Once the intermission is over, walk left and you'll reach the first of three 'shield' screens. Talk to the two shrouded men, and they'll each leave behind an item when they die (an Ether and a Hi Potion). To get past the flickering shield that's in front of you, stand as close to it as you can, then wait until the green aura is almost gone. Now, quickly run through it or you'll be knocked back when the shield's aura grows stronger. If you mess up, you'll be repelled by the shield and will be attacked by a monster:

------------------------------------------------------------------------- TIPS: UINDOUINGU <Wind Wing> LV: 36 HP: 1900 MP: 350

For starters, you can steal a Hi Potion from the Wind Wing, and you can transform it into a Phoenix Tail. Even better, you can control it using a Manipulate materia and make it attack itself! In other words, this is an easy battle.

If you happen to touch the shield from the other side, you'll get knocked back to the beginning, so be careful.

In the next screen, more of those shrouded creatures are running around and dying. Ignore them, but don't miss the chest near the first left turn of the path; there's a Kaiser Knuckle inside it. Follow the path until you reach the next screen. The second shield is here, but unlike the first one, there's a surge of energy travelling along the shield that will knock you back even if the shield's aura is almost gone. So, wait until the energy surge has passed _and_ the aura is nearly invisible, then dash across. If either defense knocks you back, you'll have to fight a second Wind Wing (see the above strategy).

Beyond the shield, Sephiroth awaits. He'll cut down two more of those black creatures before turning invisible and toying around with Cloud. After he attacks the party, he'll summon a second version of Jenova to kill Cloud and his friends.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: JENOBA*DEATH <Jenova*Death> LV: 55 HP: 25000 MP:800

Jenova will try to Silence your members from time to time, and uses a Red Light attack often (usually after being attacked with magic). It causes little damage, but too many of these will really mess up your party. Jenova's last form of attack is a spurt of fire bubbles (even weaker than the Red Light attack). As you can see, this battle is not hard at all; just hack away with physical attacks, or if you think you have enough HPs, use Meteorite and cast Bahamut, Bahamut Reborn, and Alexander. It's advisable that you wear the Ardent Flame Bracelet or Dragon Bracelet, since Jenova's attacks all cause flame-based damage. Give the Ardent Flame Bracelet to your best spellcaster, and you can knock out Jenova and gain life back at the same time :) You'll win a Reflect Ring when the battle's over.

After the boss is killed, you'll get the Black Materia back (and it's actually black this time :)) Once you're back in control of Cloud, he confesses that since Sephiroth was able to manipulate him last time, he might try it again. Therefore, someone else should hold the Black Materia and stay here while Cloud and the others follow after Sephiroth. The first time I got here, only Red 13 would take the Black Materia. This time, only Barett would. No matter what character you get, simply choose the top option when it is available (you won't get an option if that character refuses to take it). Finally, talk to Tifa.

When you're in control of Cloud again, head north. There's a materia here (MP Turbo, but notice that it's yellow when you pick it up!), as well as a Save Point and a chest containing a Poison Ring. If you go north from here, you'll run into the third and final shield. In addition to having all the defenses of the previous shield (the glowing aura and the moving energy surge), bolts of lightning will strike the ground repeatedly. Since the lightning strikes in short bursts with long pauses in between, wait for the shield's aura to fade, the energy surge to pass, _and_ wait for a pause in the lightning strikes before attempting to pass through the shield. If you're hit by any one of those defenses, you'll have to fight a Wind Wing again (refer to the strategy section above). Once you're past the shield, head along the path. It leads to an exact replicate of Nivelheim.

This next scene is sorta like a 'semi-interactive' flashback. You get to see Sephiroth run around in Nivelheim, but this time, there's another guy following him (Zekkusu, the guy you heard about in Gongaga Village). Talk to your other party member, then to Tifa. In the next scene, Zekkusu will look around Nivelheim (which has been reduced to smoldering rubble), and chat with Zangan (sp?), who I think was Tifa's mentor. (BTW, you can go to the Main Menu while Zekkusu is running around. It's pointless, but I thought it was sort of amusing :)) Then, your party appears in a flaming building, and Sephiroth appears. Instead of attacking, he talks to the party. When you can move, talk to Sephiroth and he'll teleport around the room. When you're in control of Cloud once more, talk to Tifa twice. Sephiroth warps around some more, then shows Cloud a picture of him, Tifa, and Zekkusu. After that, Cloud has another fit, and the screen fades out.

In the next scene, Rufus, Sukaaretto, and Houjou (the scientist) arrive at the crater. Before them is a monster encased in ice. It's one of the three 'Weapons', which awakens and watches them, then starts moving. Following that, Sephiroth appears in the guise of Tifa and knocks out the other characters, then tricks whoever is guarding the Black Materia to go to the center of the crater. Your party will appear in the area where the Shin-Ra members are at, and the person with the Black Materia gives it to Cloud, who then flies to the structure where Sephiroth is at (while you can move around up here, the game takes over your controls in a few seconds anyway). Once Cloud's given the Black Materia to Sephiroth, the whole crater starts to break apart and your party (sans Cloud) escape on the Highwind along with the rest of the Shin-Ra crew.

========================================================================= e. JUNON TOWN ATTACKED! =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Techniques of the Enemy materia, Chocobo Attract Materia, Force Brace, Riku x syukichikou (if you didn't get it the first time). Note that none of these items are actually found in Junon Town, but since I talk about them in this section, they're listed here.

When you come to, you'll find yourself incarcerated back in Junon Town. Without Cloud, you'll be taking control of Barett and Tifa for most of this section. As Tifa, talk to Barett. Rufus and Haidekka will show up. Now that you're in control of Barett, follow Tifa as the guards take her away (don't miss the Save Point), and prepare to execute her. Once Junon Town is attacked by the freed Weapon, one of the Shin-Ra officials knocks out Sukaaretto. It's turns out to be none other than Cait Sith, who helps Barett fight the two soldiers who are guarding him.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- TIPS: xxxx LV: 34 HP: 1300 MP: 100 xxxx LV: 34 HP: 1300 MP: 100

Physical attacks will do the trick here, although you can control them if you want. If this battle gives you trouble, you need to gain some levels at some point in the game.

Notice how the guard will run away and disappear after the battle? I guess that glitch went unnoticed...anyway, examine the door in the lower right corner of the screen and use the controller or the O button to make Barett try to pull it open. An FMV sequence follows in which the Sister Ray is readied and Junon Town prepares to engage the approaching Weapon. When it collides with the city, gas starts pumping into the chamber Tifa is trapped in. When you're in control of Barett, go and talk to Cait Sith. Then go out the door and when it closes, head right, then out the door. Outside, head down the road. If you got Yuffie, she'll be here masquerading as a newscaster; talk to her and continue to your left. Once the Weapon has rose out of the water, continue to the left until you arrive at the Airport. Then, run to the center platform and examine the yellow box to be lifted to the upper level. From there, continue towards the airship by heading right.

When you're in control of Tifa again, you have to pick up the key on the ground so you can free yourself from the gas chamber. Your controls are:

S Move right arm X Move feet O Move left arm T Move Tifa's head

You'll need to press the buttons in this order: X, X, T, X+T, T+O, O. (Or, press X, X, T, X+T, T+S, S if you want to free her other hand instead...it makes no difference).

Pressing them has the following effect:

When you press X, Tifa will stretch out her legs. Pressing X a second time makes her drag the key towards her. Then press T to sit back in the chair. Then press T and X at the same time (you don't need to hold them, just press them), and she'll lift the key up with her feet and take hold of it with her teeth at the same time. After that, T+O together will make her free her arm using the key. Finally, press O so that she can grab the key and use it to release her other arm.

Feel free to take your time doing this since waiting around won't do anything to you (Tifa's invincible! Mwa, ha ha!!)

Examine the back of the room by the left side of the chair to shut off the gas, then examine the door. After the monster provides you with an exit, climb outside and work your way down the front of the tower (don't worry about the guards). When you reach the bottom, head toward the upper left corner of the screen (the cursor will appear to help you keep track of your location, but you can disable it if you want). In the next screen, make your way down to the frontmost cylinder of the cannon, then press up to go along the front of it and end up on the cannon barrel itself (this can be a little tricky). Just as you reach the edge of the cannon, Sukaaretto. She'll start slapping you, so press the O button to slap back (go Tifa, go)! If you're fast enough, you'll slap her to the floor after 5-6 good hits. If she gets in more slaps, you get knocked over. Despite the outcome of the 'fight', Tifa will still be rescued by Barett in the Highwind.

Once in the airship, head to the cockpit where you'll talk with Cid. When he finishes, talk to Red 13 and Cid again, then chat with the man piloting the airship. After that, go to the room marked 'Operations' and talk to the man there. He will let you assemble a new group with Tifa as the leader. From this point onward, you can return to this room and talk with the man to activate PHS, restore your HP and MP, or save your game. Now that you have a party, return to the cockpit and talk to the man again. Choose the top option, and you can control the Highwind! To pilot it, use these controls:

S When held, you can use the Pad to fly without changing the direction you're facing X Press to land O Move the Highwind in the direction you're facing T Takes you inside the Highwind Pad Press left/right to turn, up/down to rise or descend Start Reveals/enlarges/hides the map Select Same as Start

Notice that your other vehicles (the Gold Saucer vehicle and Cid's airplane) are gone for good. BTW, you enter the Highwind by pressing O when you're close to it (like other vehicles). To gain control of it again, just talk to the man at the wheel and pick the top option. At this point, you'll probably want to look around and go to various places. However, you can only land on _green, grassy_ ground, and nowhere else, which limits the areas you can explore (this doesn't include the canyon floor on the Northern Continent). There are two areas you can now reach with the Highwind. The first one is a cave with a sleeping man that's just beyond the mountain range near Midgar City (you can go here with the Buggy, but since you no longer have it, you'll have to use the Highwind). Also, there's a house to the right of Icicle Lodge, you can talk to the green Chocobo inside to get a free Techniques of the Enemy Materia, and the purple geezer who lives here will sell you various chocobo foods. Finally, if you return to the Chocobo Farm, you'll find a purple materia (Chocobo Attract) near the edge of the now-empty Chocobo pen. From now on, you can breed Chocobos here (refer to the 'Secrets and Strategies' section for details.

If you look, there's a lake near Junon now (I thought this didn't appear until Disc 3 *sheepish grin*) There's also a barrier surrounding the Crater, and of course, a huge meteor is hanging in the sky (the result of Sephiroth casting Meteo via the Black Materia). A lot of places now sell different items, among them Junon Town*, Condor Fort, Costa Del Sol, and Rocket Town, for example. There's also some new treasure to be found in Rocket Town: there's a chest with a Force Brace in the store that sells accessories, in the back of the adjoining room. And if you didn't get the Riku x syukichikou from the old man in Disc 1, you can get it now.

* In very last area of Junon, there's a man standing out in the middle of the road. If you talk to him and choose the bottom option, nothing happens. But if you choose the top option, the Shin-Ra helicopter lands and you're given another choice. Pick the top option and you can ride it back to the first area of Junon Town! If you choose the bottom option, you'll be flown back out to the World Map.

Finally, keep in mind that there are some things that Tifa can't do, like enter the Gold Saucer or play the piano in her house in Nivelheim. Ditto with Cid, who becomes the leader during the next section (keep reading).

========================================================================= f. WHERE'S CLOUD? / NORTH COREL EXPRESS =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Cursed Ring, Elixir.

Get in the Highwind and fly to the Southern Continent. Look around until you spot a forest with a small village nearby. Land in the grass, and enter the village, Mideel. Look around, and be sure to do some shopping; the items here are expensive, but well worth your money. When you're done, go to the weapon shop and examine the door in the back of the room. You will try to knock on it. Go outside and climb up the stairs, then walk along the floorboards behind the house where you can buy accessories. You should hear a sound. If you press O to examine the floor, you'll receive a message. Return to the weapon shop and examine the door in the back again. When an option appears, select the top choice. You'll mess around with the door. When the shopkeeper asks what's going on, pick the bottom option, and he'll give you the Cursed Ring accessory. (If you want to see your character act funny, pick the top option instead--works better with Tifa than with anyone else, IMO. Of course, you'll have to reset and try again if you want the Cursed Ring.)

When you try to explore the north end of the town, Tifa automatically goes over to the cat in the middle of the screen. While playing with it she hears that a strange man has been brought to the hospital--inside is none other than Cloud, who survived the blast of energy back at the Crater. However, he's nothing more than a vegetable now. Tifa insists on staying by his side. Back at the Highwind, Cait Sith reveals that the Shin-Ra are hunting for the four Huge Materia, which they plan to use in order to destroy the Meteo before it crashes into the Earth. Barett gets distressed when he learns that the Shin-Ra plan to destroy North Corel in order to get the Huge Materia, then Cid declares himself the new party leader! Despite his dorky running style, Cid makes a good front man. Once you're able to control him, go to the Operations room and make a new team.

Before you go anywhere else, land and return to Mideel. You can now check out the house in the middle of the town, where an old man sits betting his cat. There's a large green item on the man's bed (an Elixir). If you try to leave, the cat turns out to be a ferocious dog! When an option appears, pick the top one to admit that you took the Elixir. However, the man will let you keep it. On the other hand, if you pick the bottom option, Cid will feign innocence, until the old man tells him that he took his Elixir. Either way, you still get the item. There's nothing else to do here (at least for now, anyways), so leave the town behind and board the Highwind (notice how Cid mentions the Condor Fort).

At this point in the game, two of the four Huge Materia sub-quests are available to you: you can either get the Huge Materia in North Corel, or get the one at Condor Fort. The choice is yours. If you want the one in North Corel first, keep reading. If you'd rather pick up the one at Condor Fort first, skip to section 4g below. Remember, you DON'T have to succeed at Huge Materia Quests; in fact, you can lose all four and still proceed with the game (if you decide to do this, just ignore any mention of Huge Materia for the remainder of the FAQ).

Ready to go? The next thing you have to do is stop a train from smashing into the town of North Corel. You can pilot the Highwind to two places; North Corel, and then work your way back through the old train tracks to the Makoro furnace, or you can land at the nearby cave-like entrance that leads to the furnace and take the train from there. Either way, you'll still have to do a bit of walking, so it's up to you (check out sections 3n and 3o if you don't remember what I'm talking about). Anyway, once you reach the furnace, head to the center and you'll be attacked by some Shin-Ra guards (easy to defeat). After you do them in, a train will leave the furnace. What you have to do is catch up with it before it rams into North Corel. The next scene finds you and your companions on a train trying to catch up to the Shin-Ra train.

Remember the digit-damaging fun you had back at the Frozen Mountain? Well, this time, it's worse. You have to press Up and the T button in a steady, yet _extremely_ fast motion to make Cid pull the levers of the train so that you can catch up to the Shinra train. Even worse, there's a time limit--you have to reach the train, board it, kill the enemies on board, and stop it all within 10 minutes. If you practice, you should be able to catch up to the train in about 23-30 seconds, but remember that you'll need about 4 minutes, at best, to beat the enemies on board, so work quickly. You fight monsters each time you leap to a new train car, (five battles in all) and while they're relatively easy to win, they do take up your time. If you have learned it by now, Degeon can be used in the first two battles for a quick win. If you're low on time, don't use Summon Materia because the counter still decreases during the casting (which usually takes some time).

Assuming you get to the locomotive with time remaining, wait for the conversation between Cid and your other characters to stop. You can now do the following; press up + T to slow the train, or down + X to speed it up. Once Cid grabs the controls, press:

Up + Triangle, Down + X, Down + X or: Down + X, Down + X, Down + X

(if there are more commands then these, let me know, pls)

You can't enter either command while your buddies are talking to you, so skip through the conversations when they occur. The train will speed up, but will slow just as it reaches the town, if you've done it correctly.

If you stop the train in time, you get a Key Item (the Huge Materia), and a little boy gives you a green materia (Ultima). The next morning, go to the house below the inn and a lady in a hat will give you Barett's Level 4 Limit Break Manual. If you messed up, then the train runs straight through North Corel. You don't get the Huge Materia, and if you want the Ultima materia, you'll have to buy it from the same kid for 50,000 gil. However, you can still get the manual from the lady in the hat and spend some free time at the inn ;P. So, it's really in your best interest to save the town. If you really want to keep playing after losing the Huge Materia, then continue on to section 3g, or if this is your second attempted quest, go to section 3h.

========================================================================= g. CONDOR FORT =========================================================================

(Remember, you can do this before or after the North Corel Huge Materia quest; it's your choice).

Pop into the Highwind and fly back to the blue tower with the big gold bird on it (read section 3l if you don't remember where it was). Enter it, and climb to the top of the tower. Talk to the man in the room with the locked door. Choose the middle option, and you'll get to play a mini-game. For instructions/strategies, please refer to the 'Having Fun' bit in section 7.

When you win, you can open the sealed door. On the rooftop is a red materia (Summon Phoenix), and if you talk to the man in white wearing the large hat in the lower room, you get a Huge Materia. For a condor's baby, that bird sure looks like a Chocobo if you ask me....

========================================================================= h. INSIDE CLOUD'S HEAD =========================================================================

Head back to the village on the Southern Continent where you left Tifa and Cloud behind. When you talk to Tifa, the screen will start to shake. Go outside, and you'll be attacked by a huge black dragon.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: ARUTEMAUEPON <Ultima Weapon> (you can't see his stats.)

This boss has only two attacks, Quega, and the Ultima Beam. He's pretty easy to beat, so just keep summoning your best monsters and use physical attacks to deal out damage. After you've injured it enough, it will fly away.

The next scene with Tifa and Cloud is so funny! They're puffy and superdeformed, and well let's just say any sense of danger or surprise at this sudden attack is forgotten once you see their wide- eyed faces as they escape the crumbling village.

After Tifa and Cloud take a dive, you'll find yourself playing with Tifa, who's in a strange world filled with Cloud's memories. First, talk to the northmost Cloud. You'll head into his memories of the trip he took to that one town near the Jenova plant with Sephiroth. When Cloud shows up, speak to him again. When you reach the 'center' of Cloud's mind again, speak to the Cloud on the left. Once you're in control of Tifa, converse with the Cloud sitting on the steps to the right (near the 'kid' Cloud).

Then talk to the 'kid' Cloud and look in the window. When you can move Tifa, talk to the 'shadow' Cloud. Once you're back in Cloud's mind talk to the 'real' Cloud and go back to the town area again. Everything else unfolds by itself (you can go to the Main Menu during the burning of Nivelheim--again!) At the end, speak with Cloud one last time, and you'll return to the 'real' world.

========================================================================= i. 100 LEAGUES UNDER THE SEA =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Sealed Off materia, God Hand, Totsu x Rappa, x ryuu x getsutou, Suishin x no Uroko (it's a Key Item, but since you don't have to get it, I'm listing it up here.)

Back at the airship, prepare a new team and take control of the Highwind. You can buy goods that weren't available before back in Mideel, and you'll want to get the Sealed Off materia orb at some point. To get it, climb up the slope on the west side of town to where the hyperactive kid is running around (remember him?) Talk to his White Chocobo and pick the first option (make sure you have at least one Mimetto Vegetable on you). When a list of six options appear, pick the fifth one from the top. The chocobo will then reveal the Sealed Off materia, which you can take.

Furthermore, if you went into each store in Mideel and talked to the hyperactive kid in each one, he will now be selling all the items that you could normally buy there! However, if you didn't go into any of the shops, or only talked to him in one shop or two shops, then he will only be selling items from those stores or will be selling nothing at all.

Also, at this point in the game, the man who lost his keys will appear outside Midgar City, enabling you to get the Key to Midgar City, among other things. You might want to take some time now to breed Chocobos, do some shopping, or maybe have some fun at the Gold Saucer (since you can now get in with Cloud in your party).

Whenever you're ready to proceed with the game, head to Junon Town for the third Huge Materia quest (you can't do the fourth one until later). Head into the center of Junon, and go down the main road (you'll see a scene with Cloud inspecting the damage that the Weapon inflicted on the town earlier). Keep walking until you arrive at the gray underpassage where a commander is drilling his men. He will order his men to run away when he sees you. Continue down the passage until you see a door labeled '1' against the left wall. Enter it, and you'll find yourself in an elevator. Two guards in here will attack you; dispatch them and let the lady take you down to the bottom of the elevator shaft.

When you step out, you'll be attacked by more Shin-Ra soldiers. Ignore the dog and go down the slope, then through the door. In the next room, head down the set of stairs until you reach another door. Past it is yet another set of stairs, and at the bottom is a Save Point. Go through the door here to reach a second lift which takes you to the bottom of the sea floor. Head north unil you reach the underwater tunnel, and follow it until you arrive at the Makoro plant. Inside, examine the red light on the far wall to pump water out of the chamber. Step outside and you'll find yourself in a huge undersea dock where several submarines are sitting. Go along the walkway--it leads to a hall with a Save Point. Walk north from here to arrive at a room filled with guards.

If you talk to the guard who's walking around, he'll attack you. You'll then fight the two other guards by the opening in a second battle. If you don't talk to the walking guard, then all three will ambush you. However, if you let yourself get ambushed, you won't have to fight the second set of soldiers by the other opening. Decide what you want to do (fun, isn't it?) and fight the guards accordingly. Then go through the opening to your right to find a chamber full of machinery. Cloud will automatically stop in front of one of the machines as you walk past it. When you can control him again, head to the right to see the Red Huge Materia being loaded onto a Shin-Ra submarine. Reno of the Turks is here, and he'll summon a mechanical freak to take you out while he makes a hasty retreat.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: KARIIAAMAA <Carry Armor> LV: 45 HP: 24000 MP: 200 MIGIUDE <Right Arm> LV: 45 HP: 10000 MP: 100 SAUDE <Left Arm> LV: 45 HP: 10000 MP: 200 (all weak vs. lightning)

This boss is composed of three parts. It can imprison two of your characters in his arms, and they recieve 1/3 the amount of damage that it receives from your attacks. However, since it has three parts, if you're making an attack that hits more than once, your ally gets struck twice or even three times! Furthermore, if the third character is killed while the other two are imprisoned, the battle is instantly lost. Destroying it's arms should be your top priority, but the arms rotate and switch sides when they are hit, so adjust your attacks accordingly. Summoning spells and enemy skills work well here. The boss' attacks are not so strong, but they come quickly. The worst one is the Lapis Laser that strikes all members for +1600 damage. BTW, the only way to free a character is to destroy the arm that's holding them, or have him or her die. This makes the Phoenix summon very useful if you just freed a friend and want to revive and attack at the same time. You'll get the God Hand weapon when you kill it and both arms.

With the Carry Armor out of the way, head to the left to find a chest with the Totsu x Rappa inside it. Then go back to the right and run along the pier until you reach gray submarine. Open the chest by the stairs to get the x ryuu x getsutou. To the left of that chest is a chest holding a Key Item: the Suishin x no Uroko (Fire Extinguisher). You'll need it later so be sure to pick it up. Go up the stairs to find a bunch of soldiers running around in place (ha!) who will fight you. Cloud will then enter the submarine and be ambushed by three soldiers. You may win a set of 'Shin-Ra Relaxed Form Defense Tool' armor from the guards, but it's not that great. Anyway, there's a Save Point here, and when you're done using it, head through the northern door to reach the bridge of the submarine.

Here, you'll meet two guards and their scared-as-hell commander. You can either choose the bottom option and let them live, or you can pick the top option and kill them. You can steal the 'Shin-Ra Armor Type Defend Tool Reform' (_very_ strong armor) from the captain if you choose to fight. Whatever your choice, examine the captain's seat when you're able to and you'll be given three options. Pick the second one to climb into the chair. From there, pick the top option to see a description of the sub controls, or the bottom option to start up the sub and enter the submarine mini-game (explained below).

Your controls on the submarine are:

S Shoot torpedoes (only when you're near an enemy craft) X Backward thrust T Forward thrust Pad Move left/right or descend/raise R1 Switch between close-up or bird's eye view R2 Switch between near, overhead, or cockpit view Start Pause; show control screen

The walls of the ocean floor are shown in blue, and there are diamond- shaped mines that are invisible until you get close. You can tell how far they are from the floor by the red columns beneath them. The purpose of this 'mini-game' is to destroy the the main Shinra sub (red) in the time allotted, although you can kill some of the ten yellow submarines if you want to. During the mission, the following warnings will appear:

WARNING When an enemy sub is approaching ALERT When an enemy sub is firing MINE You are about to run into a mine CONFLICT The sub cannot move because you are steering it against/along a rock face

You lose the game if one of two things happen; time runs out (you have 10 minutes to destroy the submarine), or if your life bar (which is represented by the red/green bar at the bottom of the screen) is depleted as a result of being hit by missiles, crashing into the walls or floor once too often, or ramming another sub. If you win, then the submarine you're in is automatically piloted to shore. If you mess up, your characters will jettison themselves from the sub. Either way, you'll learn that a Huge Materia is being transported from the Junon Airport. You can go there (it's the same place where the Highwind was docked) to see some FMV of the plane taking off, or not (it's optional).

At this point in the game, you have two options available to you. You can either sneak back into Junon and get yourself another submarine, or you can go to Rocket Town and do the fourth and final Huge Materia quest. If you already have a submarine, then you can do some underwater exploring or do the last Huge Materia quest (refer to section 3j for the former and section 3k for the latter). If you need to get a second submarine, then keep reading.

Go back into the main part of Junon Town and work your way back to the gray hallway, down the elevator with the woman, and to the room with the guards, a dog, and the sloping floor. Beat the guards and examine the dog. When he moves aside, follow him and examine him again. Choose the top option, and you'll enter the red Shinra submarine. When the guards show up, choose the top option to let them go, or the bottom option to fight them. In the cockpit room, choose the top option to save the commander, or the bottom option to fight him and his men. Either way, you still get to pilot the sub. Note that if you got the gray sub, you can't go through here and get the red sub.

========================================================================= j. UNDERWATER ADVENTURE =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Red Huge Materia (listed here because you don't have to get it), Ten no Ganshou, Escort Guard, Irreconcilable, Continuous Slice, Last Elixir x2, Elixir, Ronginusu, Outsider, Highwind Manual, 'Summon Hades' materia, Old x x no Key (listed here because you don't have to get it just yet), Kari x, Steal in Addition materia.

This section outlines a series of side-quests and optional events. While some have to be done at a certain point, the others are listed here only because you now have a submarine and can explore the ocean. You can skip this section and go on to 3k for the final Huge Materia Quest if you'd rather do the things in here at a later point.

The controls for either submarine (gray or red) are as follows:

X Submerge/Ascend O Propel forward - (doesn't work in overhead view) Pad Move in any direction - (raise or lower while underwater) L1/R1 Turn to the left or right L2/R2 Switch from side/overhead view - (doesn't work while underwater) Start Show/enlarge/hide map - (cannot enlarge map while underwater) Select Same as Start

The submarine can cross deep water, but not shallows. If you can't get by an area while skimming the sea, try submerging and looking for a passage. If you can't get over a rock wall while submerged, try ascending and looking for another way around. Also, the sub can only land at docks such as the one near Junon Town. BTW, the mini-game at the Gold Saucer also becomes available once you have a submarine.

If you sunk the red submarine, then get in your submarine and look at the map. Head to the chain of small islands southeast from the weaponsmith's house (the guy who lived near the Gold Saucer). Submerge and you'll find the red submarine. Should you touch it, Cloud will retrieve the Red Huge Materia from the wrecked submarine. If you failed to sink it earlier, then it won't be here. Note that you can wait and pick up the Red Huge Materia in Disc 3 if you'd rather not get it right now.

Next, return to the Junon Town dock and go west until you reach a jutting peninsula (or go north from where the red submarine was, assuming you sunk it). Go around the penninsula and head south until you reach land (you'll be in a little bay, near a dock, and you should be able to see the Golden Saucer from where you are). Descend and you'll find a wrecked plane lying on the sea floor. Touch it to board the sunken plane.

Inside the plane, go down the ladder. Run to the left to find a Save Point and a treasure chest (iniside is the Ten no Ganshou sword). Enter the northern door (the one with the Shin-Ra emblem on it) and head east along the walkway. There's a green chest here with an Escort Guard in it. Go down the incline to the lowest level of this room and head to the upper-left corner. Hidden by a pipe is another green chest; inside it is Yuffie's Ultimate Weapon, the Fugutaiten (in English, it means 'irreconcilable'). Now to all the way to the upper-right corner and search the wall for a hard to see yellow materia (Continuous Slice). Finally, return to the entrance and go north and then east across the beams. This leads to the final chest which has a Last Elixir inside of it.

Return to the main room and go through the door on the left wall. In the adjoining chamber are Reno and Ruudo of the Turks, who will talk to you briefly before attacking your party.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: RENO LV: 42 HP: 15000 MP: 230 RUUDO LV: 49 HP: 20000 MP: 280

Ruudo (the bald guy) can cast Blizara and Faira, while Reno will attack you with his Neo Turks' Light Ray attack. They also have the nasty ability to confuse you, which can be a serious problem if the confused member has a Continuous Slice or Slice Everybody materia equipped. Once you inflict enough damage on one of them, that person will leave. If you kill Reno, then Ruudo will simply stand around until you lower his HP to zero. Since this battle is tougher than it might seem, Haste your characters and use your best attacking and summon spells. If he's learned it, Cloud's B3/1 should be used whenever possible. You'll get an Elixir when the battle is concluded. -------------------------------------------------------------------------

With the Turks out of the way, go through the northern door. A chest sitting near the entrance contains a Last Elixir, and if you continue along the walkway and go all the way to the right, you'll find another chest with a Ronginusu inside. Go down the stairs to the lower area; near the bottom of the screen are two chests; one to the left and one to the right. The left one has an Outsider gun in it, and the right one contains Cid's Level 4 Limit Break Manual (Highwind). Before leaving, look by the wrecked helicopter for a shimmering red sphere (it's lying between the body of the helicopter and one of the broken, detached parts next to it). It's the 'Summon Hades' materia, so pick it up and then head back to your submarine. You don't need to return to the wrecked plane again, although you can fight the monsters here and transform them into various '-Up' items (you can also do this to several of the monsters in the Mideel Area). Considering this game's difficulty (the lack of, that is), you shouldn't have to do this, though.

Once you're in the submarine, look at your map. Just south and east of the southeastern tip of the Northern Continent are three islands in a sort of a curving pattern. If you can't quite tell where you are, just go along the coast of the Northern Continent until you reach an area surounded by shallows where there are three islands (you should be near snowy ground with patches of grass, in addition to a large mountain). Submerge the submarine and look for an underwater tunnel around here (guide the submarine into the dead-end and turn around; you should see it as you're moving). The short tunnel leads to a twisted, spikey object which you will take (it's called the Old x x no Key; Buugen Haagen asks you to find it later on when you return to the Ancient City in section 3l).

Finally, get back in your airship and fly to Uutai on the Westernmost Continent. Go up into the Dachao Statue area, and head along the path until you reach the path that heads north. Follow it past the statue's head until you reach another crossroads with a cave entrance nearby. Enter the cave. Try to walk into the first fire-pit twice and Cloud will use the Suishin x no Uroko on the flames each time, exposing a green chest which contains a Kari x (a shuriken for Yuffie). Explore the rest of the cave until you find a second fire-pit. Press against it to douse it with the Suishin x no Uroko. This allows you to take the blue materia lying on the floor (Steal in Addition).

========================================================================= k. CID'S ROCKET =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Nothing!

Return to Rocket Town (it's beyond the mountains near the Gold Saucer). Go to the launch pad. It's swarming with Shin-Ra soldiers! Make your way to the stairs leading up to the rocket and you'll be attacked by two soldiers. Deal with them and you'll be attacked by another pair of soldiers. At the top of the stairs, you'll fight two more soldiers and their captain. After killing them, Cid will show up and insist on joining if he's not already with you. After you've made a party, press X to continue playing, T to go to the Main Menu, or O to change your party's configuration (but Cloud and Cid cannot be removed from the current party). After you choose to continue playing, climb up the ladder and you'll face off with two Shin-Ra soldiers and Ruudo of the Turks.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: RUUDO LV: 42 HP: 9000 MP: 240 xxxx LV: 34 HP: 1300 MP: 100 xxxx LV: 34 HP: 1300 MP: 100

Use physical attacks to kill the soldiers and injure Ruudo, especially if you've got the Continuous Slice and Slice Everybody materia equipped. Ruudo can use a jumping wave attack, but it only causes about 500 points of damage. He can also create a Mabarrier which he usually casts when one or both of the soldiers are killed, and he can cast Sandara and heal himself for about 1100 hit points. Despite all his powers, he's still easily beaten. If you kill Ruudo before finishing off the guards, you'll automatically win the battle. You may win an S Mine once you win the battle. -------------------------------------------------------------------------

Go inside the rocket ship--you'll have to fight another battle, but it's easily won. Press O to open the northern door, then go into the main room, where Cid will talk to the workers. After the rocket lifts off, go to the right into the next room and climb up the ladder. Examine the Huge Materia in the next room and choose the top option. Cid will chat with Cloud and several numbered boxes will appear. When they do, punch in the following code, one press per message box:

First Message (1): O Second Message (2): S Third Message (3): X Fourth Message (4): X

If you did it correctly, the glass tube will open and you can take the Huge Materia. If you mess up, you'll have 3 minutes to get the code right, and Cid will try to clue you in to the correct code. Should the timer reach zero, the Huge Materia is lowered into the ground.

Whether you got the Huge Materia or not, return to the entry room and climb down the ladder; when you get near the sparking tanks, they will explode. With a little help from Shiera, you'll free Cid from under a piece of metal. Follow Shiera into the next room (which turns out to be an escape capsule). After a lengthy FMV sequence, you'll find yourself back in Highwind, and the Meteor hanging in the sky will now be much closer than it was before. Alternately, you can do this part (see the tanks explode) and then go back and get/not get the Huge Materia, or you can even do this part and then take the escape pod without even attempting to free the Huge Materia (which means you obviously won't get it).

========================================================================= l. RETURN TO THE ANCIENT CITY / MIDGAR CITY UNDER SIEGE =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Ultima Weapon, Elixir x3, Last Elixir, Aegis Bracelet, Starlight Horn, Maximum Ray, Power Up x2, Guard Up, Magic Up, Mind Up, Double Item materia, Master Fist, Pile Banker, Marvelous Cheer, Ragnarok, Missing Score.

Get in the Highwind and return to Cosmo Canyon. Make your way up to the observatory and talk to Buugen Haagen. Cloud will use the PHS system to call the rest of his friends up to Buugen Haagen's home. They'll all talk about Sephiroth and Aerith, and then leave Cloud alone with Buugen Haagen, who offers to keep the Huge Materia at his observatory for safekeeping. Touch any of the Huge Materia you have and pick the bottom option to return to the Highwind. Buugen Haagen will accompany you. Pilot the Highwind back to the Northern Continent and land in the canyon where the Ancient City is located. At the crossroads, take the left path and follow it into the chamber with the blue crystal that you couldn't do anything to earlier. Head right along the upper path and take the stairs up to the crystal. Buugen Haagen will talk to Cloud and his friends. If you already got the Old x x no Key, Buugen Haagen uses it to create a waterfall. If you didn't get it yet, he'll remain here in the Ancient City until you find it and return to him with it.

Once the waterfall has been activated, walk towards the crystal a second time. Pictures of Aerith will be shown in the falling water while Buugen talks to your party. Now, leave the Ancient City. As you do, Cait Sith calls on Cloud's phone and tells him that the Sister Ray in Junon Town has been re-installed in Midgar City, and that it's going to be used to destroy the barrier around the crater (where Sephiroth's at). After seeing some more FMV, return to the Highwind. Just as you're about to board it, another Weapon monster shows up and starts advancing towards Midgar City. Since you can't attack it while in the Highwind, and you can't reach it using the submarine, wait until it reaches dry land, then try and touch it in order to see another FMV sequence in which the Sister Ray is used to kill the Weapon and break the shield at the same time.

At this point in the game, if you return to the lake near Junon Town, the Ultima Weapon will be hovering over the lake. You can battle the Ultima Weapon by ramming into it while aboard the Highwind. However, it will fly away after fighting with you for awhile. From this point on, it will fly around the sky and make it's way to various random locations. It might seem as if you could just wait around for the Ultima Weapon to show up here and there, but the beast will fly in circles unless you find it and ram into it repeatedly. After 4 or 5 tries, it will then head towards a new location and sit there until you attack again. After escaping a few more times, it will make a final stop at Cosmo Canyon. You can fight it to the death here (it's a pushover, so don't expect too much of a challenge), and when it dies, you get Cloud's Ultimate Weapon (the Ultima Weapon). Furthermore, it will create a crater when it crashes into the ground, wiping out several of the rock formations around Cosmo Canyon. However, you can now walk across the crater and go into the Old Forest! Normally, you can't reach this place unless you're using a colored Chocobo. If you don't want to fight the Ultima Weapon now, you still fight it during Disc 3.

Anyway, pilot the Highwind back to the crater when you're ready. Before you can explore it further, Reeve (y'know, the guy who controls Cait Sith) reveals that Hojo (one of the members of the Jenova Project) is planning to use the Sister Ray again, even though the results could be catastrophic considering how much energy it used up last time. So you have to get back into Midgar City and stop Hojo beforehand.

<KM's note -- Upon getting back in the Highwind, I talked to the pilot near Cid in order to take control of the airship. He said something about the airship reaching it's "Level 14 Limit Break" and most of the text was flashing in rainbow colors (same effect as when you have the All 7 Fever). Does anybody know why this happened?>

When you're ready to raid Midgar City, fly the Highwind straight towards it, as if you were going to ram into it. Cloud and his allies will gather together on the airship's deck. You can now choose the top option to assemble a new party, or the bottom option to leap off the ship and parachute into the city. When you can move, follow your friend to an alleyway where your pals are waiting. There's also a Save Point here. Talk to whoever is by the wooden panel and they'll open it to reveal a ladder leading down into the depths of Midgar City. At the bottom of the ladder, go along the metal passage and down the slope. Go up the the next slope and when you reach the wall, head right to find a chest containing an Elixir, and then run to the left to find a chest with a Last Elixir inside of it.

Make your way back to the area with the ladder and take the stairs down to an area with a ladder. If you climb down the ladder, you'll reach a long walkway; head east and then go north to arrive at another ladder. Climb up it and you'll have access to the green chest you saw earlier; it contains an Aegis Bracelet. Climb back down to the long walkway and run to the right. The floor will give way and you'll be deposited on a lower walkway. Head left, jump on top of the pipe, and then ascend the ladder. When you arrive at another ladder, climb up it, too.

Eventually you'll arrive at a path just below the one you were walking around on earlier. Walk along it until you reach a chute; walk into it and you'll be deposited in a new area. Check out the green chest to the left (there's a Starlight Horn inside it). Then go to the right and open the chest that's near the ladder (it contains an Elixir). Climb down the ladder and press against the right lip of the platform in order to jump down to the chute labled '42'. Enter the chute, and when you arrive at the other end, head left and then go up the ladder. At the top, you'll find a chest to the left; there's a Maximum Ray inside it. Retrace your steps until you're back at the other area, press left to jump off the chute and back onto the platform, and then climb up the ladder and go up the stairs to your left (it's right next to the chute labled '12').

At the top of the stairs is a Save Point. To the right of it is a crawlway. Make you way along it and you'll arrive in an underground tunnel system. Climb down to the floor and head south. While many of the passages here split off in two directions, one direction will always end in a blocked door, so keep going south. As you keep going, you'll run into your friends (remember, who you meet up with depends on who is and isn't in your group). After heading south for a couple of screens, you'll find a treasure chest lying against the left wall of one of those 'split-passage' areas I mentioned earlier. Inside it is a Power Up. At the next split-passage area that you come across, there is a treasure chest in the area between the doorways. There's a Guard Up inside it. Keep going south, and when you reach the next split-passage area, there will be two chests lying in the area between the doorways. The one to the left has a Magic Up inside it, and the one to the right contains a Mind Up. If you go south from here, you'll arrive at a dead end. In the left corner of this area is a Save Point, and in the right corner there is a yellow materia (Double Item). If you press against the wall, you'll discover that you can't go any further.

So, go all the way back to the first area (where the ladder was). Try to head to the north and guess who shows up! It's the remaining Turks, and they're here for a final showdown with Cloud and his friends. I could swear that the first time I came through here, they asked if I wanted to fight or not...but I guess not, since nothing like that happened this time around. Perhaps it has something to do with completing Yuffie's sub-quest before coming here?

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: IRIINA (can't see her stats.) RENO LV: 50 HP: 25000 MP: 200 RUUDO LV: 51 HP: 28000 MP: 250

Iriina is healed by lightning attacks, Reno by ice attacks, and Ruudo by fire attacks. Ruudo has a punch attack that hits one character for 2000 points of damage, Iriina can throw a firebomb that inflicts 500 to 600 points of damage (in addition to a charm attack), and Reno uses a spark attack which will cause 800 HPs worth of damage. They all have more attacks than these; but I'm listing the ones the seem to use most often. Alone, they aren't much, but with all three of them fighting together, this becomes one of the toughest battles in game. Barrier and Haste your allies, then use spells like Ultima and Tornado to soften the Turks up in addition to Limit Breaks. Try to save Phoenix until you really need it, since it will revive your members but heal Ruudo. All three Turks will escape once you've defeated them in battle. You'll get an Elixir when the battle is over. -------------------------------------------------------------------------

After the battle, go north. When you reach the split passage area, go north again. If Cid isn't in your party, he'll show up here. Take the right path and at the next split passage, take the left path. You'll arrive at a blocked passage, but there's a ladder against the left wall that leads to the Shin-Ra Building. If Cait Sith is in your party, he'll talk to you. Otherwise, you'll see him hop out of the building. If you didn't read Kamedouraku Flyer No. 2 the first time around, you can check out the billboard at the back end of the first floor to read it now. Go up the stairs near the front and look for a door marked 'Accessories' near the other end of this floor. In the adjoining room, you can open two chests that a Shin-Ra employee wouldn't let you examine eaarlier. The one to the right contains a Master Fist and the left one has a Pile Banker inside of it. Before leaving, go up to the 64th floor and look for the lockers (go north from the elevators). If you examine the left end of the row of lockers against the wall, you'll find the Marvelous Cheer (Cait Sith's Ultimate Weapon that you couldn't take earlier).

Return to the underground passages again. Go south past one split- passage room, and when you reach the second room, take the left path. You'll go outside. Walk towards the lefthand red beam to climb up it and jump onto the main street. Head north and a huge mechanical monster will appear from behind you; it's being controlled by Haidekkaa and Sukaaretto. After laughing in your face, they'll attack you.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: PURAUDO KURADDO <Proud Cloud> (can't see it's stats.) JAMAAAAAMAA <Jammer Armor> LV: 62 HP: 20000 MP: 300

This mechanical monstrosity has two parts; a head and a chest area that you can aim your attacks at. The boss can only cause around 500-800 points of damage, but it can kneel and fire a ray from it's back (the Beam Cannon attack) that causes 1100 damage to all members. Even after disabling the Jammer Armor (it can use it's Materia Jammer attack to disable your Materia), you'll still have to keep attacking the main part if you want to kill it. Spells and summonings work nicely, and you shouldn't worry about your HP until the boss kneels and readies it's laser attack. You'll get the Ragnarok sword once the fight is over. -------------------------------------------------------------------------

Once the machine explodes, it starts to rain. Head north. There are two chests near the entrance. The one closest to you has an Elixir in it, while the one that's further away contains a Misutiiru. Use the Save Point that's nearby if you want to, then climb up the ladders. If he's not in your party, Vincent will be on the lower landing. The second landing is normally empty, but if Barett is in your party, you will see a green chest there. Open it to get Barett's Ultimate Weapon, the Missing Score. If Barett's not in you party, you won't find anything on the landing, even if you search it thoroughly. Once you've climbed all the way to the top, run to the right. Sitting at the Mako Cannon's (Sister Ray's) controls is Hojo, who will attack your party when you talk to him.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: HOUJOU LV: 50 HP: 13000 MP: 250 PUDUREA SANPURU <Pudurea Sample> LV: 42 HP: 10000 MP: 200 IBIRURAPPU SANPURU <Ibirurappu S> LV: 34 HP: 11000 MP: 120 HERETIKKU HOUJOU <Heretic Hojo> LV: 55 HP: 26000 MP: 200 MIGUIDE <Right Arm> LV: 55 HP: 5000 MP: 300 SAUDE <Left Arm> LV: 55 HP: 24000 MP: 400 xxxxx HOUJOU NA <Hojo NA> (can't see his stats.)

Hojo can use his 'Capsule' power to summon the two 'Sample' monsters every time you kill them. So, concentrate on defeating Hojo instead of the lesser monsters. He'll then reappear as a huge monster with two independant arms (Heretic Hojo). Since Hojo can bring the arms back to life, aim your attacks at the main body of the boss. He may cast Confuse or Silence on you, so I hope you have some Ribbons equipped. The right arm will also inflict a lot of damage, so cast Barrier beforehand. In his final form, Hojo can cast Slow and employ a multiple-hit attack (Combo), which will poison whoever is hit by it. As long as you keep your HPs up, this battle is a cinch. You'll receive a Power Up once you've killed Hojo. -------------------------------------------------------------------------

You'll return to the Highwind after killing the boss. There's a short sequence with Tifa and Cloud afterward, then the Highwind blasts off into the sky. Well, that's the end of this disc! My time...17:25 the first time around, and 14:24 for the rewrite.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
WALKTHROUGH - DISC THREE
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

========================================================================= a. MAKOU PIT =========================================================================

ITEMS IN THIS AREA: Limited Moon, Save Crystal, Guard Up x3, Mind Up x2, Magic Up x2, Elixir x2, Power Up x2, HP Absorb materia, Last Elixir x4, Ei x no Kusuri x3, Misutiiru, Speed Up x2, Tetra-Elemental, Almighty Medicine x2, Vaccine x2, Shield materia, Imperial Guard, Double Magic materia, Command Counter materia, X Potion x2, Ether Turbo x2, Everything Affect All materia, Luck Up

You'll start off on the deck of the Highwind. If you'd rather explore the World Map instead, just go back to the cockpit, talk to the engineer next to Cid, and choose the top option. If you haven't noticed it yet, the Highwind is now rocket-powered.

Before descending into the crater and exploring the Makou Pit, you may want to pick up Red 13's Ultimate Weapon. Return to Cosmo Canyon and climb up to the second floor of the observatory, making sure that Red 13 is in your group beforehand (you can switch characters at the Save Point near the Tiger Lily Arms Shop if you need to). Buugen Haagen is lying on his couch, and he is about to pass away. He chats with Red 13 for a while, then dies. Back at the bonfire, Red 13 rejoins his companions, and now has the Limited Moon in his inventory. Also, if you haven't gotten either of the 'optional' characters yet (Yuffie or Vincent), then now would be a good time to add them to your party.

When you're ready to explore the Makou Pit, land the Highwind and go out to the deck. You can talk to the man out here to change party members (he'll automatically ask you every time you return to the Highwind). Climb down the rope ladder to reach a new area, then head southwest. In the next screen you'll be given an option: pick the bottom one to turn back or the top one to descend into the pit. After hopping down the steps, you'll see a cavern entrance. If you go inside it, it merely returns you to the last area, in which you can climb up the stone column and make your way back to the Highwind. Otherwise, simply follow the path as it winds it's way down into the ground. Don't worry should the ground crumble away since you can jump over the gaps. The first chest you find contains a Save Crystal. It can be used once while in the Makou Pit to create a Save Point. Considering that there are no Save Points at all in this level, the Save Crystal is a handy item to have. The next chest you find has a Guard Up in it.

In the next area, you can climb the silver parts of the ledges by pressing O when you are standing near them (a message appears prompting you to do this). Go to the right and hop down the 'steps'. The first chest you find has a Guard Up inside of it. Be sure to make your way to the next chest and not explore the edge of the ledge below the chest you just opened or you'll jump down to the bottom and will have to climb all the way back up again (although you'll be doing that at some point anyway, so it's no big deal). In the second chest is a Mind Up. You can now either climb back up and get the rest of the chests, or continue searching the Makou Pit and get the chests when you are coming back out (assuming you want to make more than one journey into the Pit). To get the chests, climb up the ledge to your left (you're at the bottom of the screen, remember?) Go all the way to the left and climb up two ledges, then walk to the right to find another chest containing a Magic Up. Go left again, go up to the next ledge, then go to the right and climb up again. Walk all the way to the right, climb up the tall ledge, then head left to find a chest holding an Elixir. From there, walk up to the next ledge, go to the left, and climb up the silver part to arrive at a chest that has a Power Up in it. If you go to the right, you'll find an HP Absorb materia just past a large rock. Finally, jump back down, go to the right, and climb up the ledge to reach the top again (you can jump to the top ledge from here and exit the Pit by going back up the spiraling passage).

If you head south from the bottom of the screen, you'll arrive at a large chamber pocked with holes. Walk to the right until you fall down a level, then go left to uncover a chest (inside is a Mind Up). Go to the edge of this ledge, turn around, and press O to jump up to the upper ledge (just like in the last area, you'll be prompted to jump whenever you are near a ledge ending). Head left until you fall down, then go to the right and step into the hole by pressing up. Beyond the opening is a treasure chest containing a Last Elixir. Go back out again and walk all the way to the left and you will fall down to a new level (since you can't see Cloud, move left or right until he falls). Run to the right in order to find a chest, which has an Ei x no Kusuri inside of it. Walk to the left and enter the hole. As you walk along the adjoining path, stop to open a treasure chest to your left which holds a Guard Up, and go through the hole that's a little farther up to reach a chest with a Power Up inside it. Go back out the hole and keep climbing to reach an opening that deposits you back at the top of the screen. To get back down to the bottom, run to the right until you drop down, press right again to fall a second time, and enter the hole. The passage beyond it leads to another hole; press left to fall down it (if you want to get back up, just climb the ledges to your left). Then walk to the left until you fall, and walk right to fall again.

Here, climb down the two stalagtites in order to reach the ground where your friends are waiting. Each one asks you which path they should take, the left one (top option), or the right one (bottom option). Furthermore, you may have certain characters join you, or you may be asked to make a new group (and you may not have many characters to pick from). Unfortunately, I really have no clue as to how this part of the game works even after playing through it numerous times. (Yes, that means that you should still treat this whole paragraph as a NSS :))

Take whatever path is available to you (you'll get a message if you can't go in that direction). Refer to the LEFT PATH or RIGHT PATH sections depending on which one is available to you. Note that once you reach the PLACE OF GATHERING, you can go back and explore all the areas freely (remember that because you may be approaching an area from a different location, you may have to do it in a different order. For instance, you can tackle the LEFT PATH: LOWER ROUTE area from either the top or bottom, so take note while playing (and no, I'm not going to write out the section backwards and forwards, just figure it out yourself depending on where you're going!)

RIGHT PATH You'll find yourself on a column of stone. Follow the winding path that leads along the column. Eventually, you'll reach a gap in the path. Pick the top option to jump down to the area below, or the bottom option to turn back. When you land on the ground, look to your right for a chest containing a Misutiiru. To your left is a green Elixir. Take it and continue along the path until you reach a broad, gray area. Here, there is a treasure chest to the north containing a Speed Up. If you look to the south, wedged between several broken structures is another chest that has a Tetra-Elemental inside it. Go back to the main path and head east, then north. Here, the path splits to the north or the west.

Take the west branch and it'll lead to a dead-end where there is a chest. Iniside it is a Last Elixir. Retrace your steps and keep going north; just to your right will be a chest that also has a Last Elixir inside of it. If you keep going north, you'll arrive at a bridge made of curving bones. Work your way down it and you'll arrive at the PLACE OF GATHERING (see below).

LEFT PATH In this room, your teammates will each ask if you should take the upper (top option) or lower (bottom option) route. Pick accordingly, and refer to the UPPER ROUTE and LOWER ROUTE sub-sections depending on what you chose. You may be prompted to make a new party yet again after you have decided on the route you will take.

LEFT PATH: UPPER ROUTE Hop down onto the branch-like structure, run to the right, and when you can't go any further, press Up to jump to another branch. From here, go right to reach a chest containing a Magic Up. Now, hop back to the first branch and go left, then north. When you reach the edge, Cloud will jump onto the nearby rocks. Walk north along the path and Cloud will dive in the water and jump out on the other side of the screen. If you walk to the left, then go north, you'll arrive at a chest which has an Almighty Medicine within it. Head right, but take the upper branch (go east, then north) in order to arrive at a new area.

Here, head to the far right to find a chest which contains an Ei x no Kusuri. Then take the upper path and run all he way to the left. If you go a little ways to the north, you'll see a chest; it has a Vaccine in it. To the right of the chest is a large rock; walk in front of it and you'll see a path that leads up to the top of the rock, where a green materia is lying on the ground (Shield). Take it and walk to the left, then press Down to descend the rock face. Cloud will jump into the water and pop out again near a treasure chest (Imperial Guard). After opening the chest, keep pressing Down and Cloud will dive into the water again and end up on the other side of the screen. From here, run south and then east to reach yet another unexplored area.

This area is full of green shrubbery and stone tiers. Walk to the left in order to work your way down the tiers, but then go to the center of the screen and walk north until you're right beneath the shrubbery. There is a small dot here; press O to examine it and you'll find that it's the Double Magic materia. From here, work your way down to the shining light (go south, then east). There is a patch of darkness in the light--examine it and you'll get the Command Counter materia. Now, walk west and then north to find a cave entrance. It leads to the PLACE OF GATHERING (see below).

LEFT PATH: LOWER ROUTE Hop down the stone columns and investigate the chest to your left to find an Almighty Medicine. Head to the right and hop up the stone columns to arrive at a chest that has an Elixir inside of it. Then go back to the first treasure chest and press against the bottom of the ledge. You'll hop down to a column where there is a chest containing an X Potion. Make your way to the southeast. In the next screen, hop down the stone columns and then go to the left to find a chest with an Ether Turbo in it. Then follow the path east and north. There's another chest here and a Vaccine is inside it. Walk to the west, then follow the path south and hop across the columns. When you reach the bottom of the screen, run to the south.

In this area, go to the right and press down to hop down to a small ledge. Below is a larger ledge and a green chest (X Potion). Walk to the left across the thin stone bridge, drop down a level, then keep going right until you see some stone 'steps'. Go down them; to the left is a green chest containing a Ether Turbo. If you walk to the left, you'll jump down to a low ledge. Nearby, there is a ball floating in the air. Hold Up in order to jump from a small ledge to a larger ledge, and when you get near the ball, tap O repeatedly. If you timed it right, you'll be able to take the ball, which is actually the Everything Affect All materia. If you missed it, just press left to jump back down to the lower ledge and then try again. You can only get the materia while jumping to the small ledge, not while jumping from the large western ledge.

Once you've gotten the materia and are on the large ledge, walk to the other end of it. There's a chest here (Speed Up). Now walk to the south and press against the edge to jump down to a lower area. Keep walking south and you'll reach the PLACE OF GATHERING.

PLACE OF GATHERING On the right side of this chamber is a chest containing a Luck Up. Follow the path as it curves around until you reach a set of stone steps. Your friends will show up here. Depending on where you told them to go earlier, they may or may not have items to give you. Talk to each one of them to get an item (or not), then approach the stone steps. Pick the top option to go down them or the bottom option to stay where you are. Once you pick the top option, you can't go back, so feel free to choose the bottom option and then leave this area from the upper ledge (walk to the left) if you have more exploring to do.

Once you've chosen the top option, assemble a new group. You'll leap down the steps and arrive at the lowest levels of the Makou Pit (home not only to Jenova and Sephiroth but also to massive slowdown). Simply jump from floating ledge to floating ledge, working your way towards the bottom of the screen. In the second screen, make your way to the central island of rock, where the final form of Jenova will appear and attack you.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: JENOBA*SYNTHESIS <Jenova Synthesis> (can't see her stats.) JENOBA*SYNTHESIS B <Jenova S. B> LV: 61 HP: 10000 MP: 600 JENOBA*SYNTHESIS C <Jenova S. C> LV: 61 HP: 8000 MP: 600

Start the round by using Haste and Barrier on yourselves, then use Enemy Skills and Summon Materia to dish out damage. The tentacle-like arms will droop and become useless after you've attacked them long enough, but they regenerate with some HP if you don't kill the boss quickly, so use high-level spells (Ultima or Inseki) to take them out and injure Jenova at the same time. When she is about to die, a message appears and starts counting down the rounds from 5; if you don't kill her by the time it reaches zero, Jenova Synthesis will cast Ultima. For the second- to-last boss, this is an easy battle. She has very weak physical attacks (500-800 damage), and not much else. If you want to conserve MP, you can take out the boss using physical attacks with little injury to yourself. If she does cast Ultima, the battle ends, but you get no EXP, GP, or AP, so try to kill her as quickly as possible.

After the death of Jenova Synthesis, the ground will break up and Cloud and his friends will awaken to find themselves floating in space. Sephiroth makes his final appearance here, floating next to the core of the Makou Pit. You'll get to make a new party*, then the battle with Sephiroth will commence.

* Apparently, the number of teams you can make is determined randomly. The first time I played this game, I was able to make two parties, but since then I've been able to make just one party or three parties (the third had only two members, since you only have 8 characters). For a time, I thought this was based on the paths you took when you talked to your friends at various locations in the Makou Pit, but I guess it is simply a random occurence after all.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: RIBAASU SEFIROSU <Reverse Sephiroth> (can't see it's stats) RIBAASU SEFIROSU B LV: 61 HP: 2000 MP: 400 RIBAASU SEFIROSU C LV: 61 HP: 10000 MP: 400 RIBAASU SEFIROSU D LV: 61 HP: 4000 MP: 400 RIBAASU SEFIROSU E LV: 61 HP: 4000 MP: 400

Use Wall and Haste on yourselves (maybe even Regen), then use your best attacks against Sephiroth, like Coin Toss, Ultima, and summon spells. Every time you kill a few of of it's body parts, you'll be asked if you want to switch to another team (left option to switch, right option to keep using the current party). In this case (if you have more than one team), you'll find that only one team can damage the yellow orb (part C) of Sephiroth's body. Once part C is sufficiently damaged, you'll get a message stating that Cloud can now attack part C as well, so switch back to him and attack Sephiroth. Once part C is destroyed, kill off the rest of the body parts. If you only have one team, all you can do is attack. The number of teams you have will affect the strategy used against this boss, so keep that in mind when attacking*. I'm not exactly sure about this, but: Sephiroth will gain more HP and MP in proportion to Cloud's experience level, and using the Knights of the Round materia will _usually_ kill Sephiroth. If you more than one team, keep in mind that the battle will end if even one team is killed. And interestingly enough, the number of times you've used a summon materia resets when you switch to a team and back.

Sephiroth can heal himself using a technique called Reverse Energy, and he can use it to bring defeat body parts back to life. Among his attacks are Graviga, an explosion attack that causes 1500+ points of damage, a fire ray emitted from his chest that inflicts 1700+ damage, and a 'Fallen Angel'-type attack that reduces all party members' HP to one point.

* I'm saying this because one time I was able to kill Reverse Sephiroth before receiving the message to attack part C.

Once Reverse Sephiroth has been defeated, Sephiroth shows up in a new form. You always fight him using the team that Cloud is a part of.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: SEEFA SEFIROSU <Seraph Sephiroth> (can't see his stats.)

Looks like Square couldn't bother creating a new end boss, could they? Seraph Sephiroth can cast Slow, Flare, Break, Doom, and Dispel (Dispel will affect all members). Other attacks include Supernova (a 'summon' style spell that inflicts 1100-2200 damage to all allies; it causes confusion and silence), Pyro Holes (a laser attack causing 3700-3800 damage), and Dein (ring-shaped flares break apart the ground and cause 1200-1300 damage to all members. His sole physical attack is a wing slash that causes upwards of 5000 damage points. Sephiroth can fly around, too, preventing some characters from using certain skills or attacks against him.

Use Wall on yourself, and then heal, revive, and fix status ailments with the Angel's Whisper Enemy Skill. Haste yourselves and use physical attacks, your best summon materia, and Ultima. You can even use Coin Toss or Throw if you want. Seraph Sephiroth isn't easy to kill, but he's certainly no challenge, even if you have low levels. There's only one thing to watch out for: if Cloud's level is at 98-99, then Sephiroth becomes monsterously powerful and much harder to kill.

After a brief automated sequence, Cloud fights Sephiroth one last time. I'll leave this up to you...I doubt you'll lose! My time was 6:20 the first time around, and 1:30 for the rewrite.

++++++++++++++++ BONUS AREAS ++++++++++++++++

You can only go to these areas in Disc 2 or 3. There's some information on these bonus areas in the 'Secrets and Strategies' section, too.

_________________________________________________________________________ OLD FOREST (Cosmo Area)

Location: On a cliff near Cosmo Canyon on the Western Continent. How to get there: Use a Green, Black, or Gold Chocobo. Or, climb past the crater that's left behind when you kill the Ultima Weapon in Disc 3--it destroys part of the cliff. Items to get: Highbrow ST, Spriggan Clip, Slice Everybody materia, Summon Chupon materia, Apocalypse sword, Elixir. _________________________________________________________________________

You can grab items (frogs, big frogs, wasp nests, etc.) by pressing the O button. When you grab a frog for the first time, you get a message informing you that if you press the S button, the _entire_ area will reset, returning all the items to their proper place. However, it also returns you to the very start of the area, no matter how many screens you've worked your way through. If you mess up on an area (you run out of frogs to use for transportation), you can cheat by leaving the area and returning (if it's possible to leave given your current location). But if you're really stuck, you have no choice but to reset the whole level by pressing S. You will keep all items and materia orbs you've collected so far, though. Also, when you hear a frog croaking, look for a place where you can let go of a small frog you might be carrying as it'll be replaced with a big frog.

In the first area, pick up three frogs and go beneath the earth bridge. Put them near the three bags hanging from the trees. Now, quickly take the frogs and press the O button to make them hop into the bags; repeat this until all three bags are full by standing on a bag and pressing O to put a frog into the next bag. When they're all full, hop to the other side of the gap. Once on the other side, go down the slope and _carefully_ inch towards the center of the large snapping plant. Press O to grab the bag (which contains the Highbrow ST gun). If you get too close, the plant will close and you'll lose almost all your HP. You can make as many attempts as you want, but it's best to try and not touch the center of the plant in the first place. Continue to the right when you're finished here and Cloud will automatically use the pink vine to reach the other side. Go past the tree and nab the item bag on the hill (there's a Spriggan Clip inside), and head right to reach the next part of the forest.

In the second area, pick up one frog and approach the pink vine. Choose the top option to leap to the ledge. If you leave the frog on the ledge, it'll be switched with a big frog (or you can just use your small frog). From here, you can put the frog in the bag and leap across to the second (already-full) bag. You'll automatically use the pink vine to jump to the ground. Now, pick up a frog and climb on top of the green ledge to your right; let it go and it will leap into the left bag. If you wait long enough, you'll be sent flying to the ledge above when the frog escapes (you have to use a big one). Once on the ledge, take the wasp nest. Jump back down. Stand near the small snapping plant and press O to release the nest; if you're at the right distance, the nest will fly backward and land in the plant, which will snap it up. Take the yellow materia (Slice Everybody). Pick up the big frog again. Climb to the green ledge one more time and let the frog jump into the right bag. Jump atop it and wait until you are thrust onto the opposite side of the huge snapping plant. Run to the right to reach the next zone.

In the third area, pick up two frogs, toss them into the bags, and leap across to the pink vine. You'll be lifted into the treetops. Go left, then down the trunk to reach the big bag you saw back in the second area. A Minerva Brace is inside. If you go too far down the trunk, you'll jump down to the ground, so return to the treetops after grabbing the bag. If for some reason you can't, just hop back down repeat the last few steps to get across the plant, get into the next screen, and return to the treetops.

Once you're back in the trees, climb to the upmost branch and head right, then make your way towards the broken branch; Cloud will vault across three of the pink vines and land on another branch. Go south to get yet another item bag holding a red materia (Summon Chupon). Now, go back across the vines, and take the lower branch that leads behind the leaves to the ground level (look for a path leading right). Once on the ground, grab a frog. There are two bags to your right; look for a high ledge beneath them, stand on it, and toss the frog into the bag. Then, hop onto it and make your way over to the second bag, then to the ledge with the wasp's nest. Take it and drop to the ground, then approach the snapping plant and press O to release the nest. If you are positioned correctly, you'll toss the nest into the plant, which will close up.

Pick up a small frog and move past the plant. Stand on the left ledge, and let go of the frog; it will jump into the nearby bag. Hop across the bag and onto the ground. Run to the left and grab a frog. Put it in the hollow in the tree next to you and a big frog will jump out. Take it and go back the way you came (put the big frog in the bag, jump to the other side, and wait for it to land by your feet). Grab it again, go to the far right ledge, and release it into the bag. Now, stand on the bag and wait for the frog to escape. Doing this sends you flying across the gap to a cave entrance.

In the cave, walk to the right to find a chest with the Apocalypse sword lying within. Head to the north, then go east to find another chest (there's an Elixir in it). Finally, exit through the opening to your left. You're back outside! Yup, there are no bosses to fight in this area (which is a good thing in case you had a hard time dealing with the snapping plants).

_________________________________________________________________________ VINCENT'S WATERFALL

Location: Waterfall in the center of the Western Continent. How to get there: Use a Green, Black, or Gold Chocobo to go to the west side of the waterfall by the lake. Dismount and touch the waterfall to enter it. Alternately, you can go there in submarine--you can dock on the dark-colored western side of the shore. Items to get: Death Penalty, Chaos Manual (in Disc 3, see below). _________________________________________________________________________

Beyond the waterfall is a room made of white stone. If Vincent isn't in your party, then you'll get a message stating his name when you step past the threshold of the room. So, return with Vincent. This time, there's a woman there (Rukuressia), and you'll get to see a flashback of Vincent's past. While you don't get anything out of this if you visit during the third disc, you can get Vincent's best weapon and his Level 4 Limit Break Manual if you come here with him in your party during the second disc and then visit the waterfall again in the third disc. Refer to the 'Ultimate Weapons' section in part two of the FAQ for more information on this area.

_________________________________________________________________________ WESTERNMOST CAVE (Uutai Area)

Location: Cave lying to the east of a mountain in the bridge- covered region of the Westernmost Continent. How to get there: Use a Green, Black, or Gold Chocobo to climb over the mountain. Dismount and enter the cave. Items to get: Mimicry materia. _________________________________________________________________________

There's nothing in here but a glowing yellow light. Try to touch it, and you'll get a yellow materia (Mimicry). Notice how there's still a glow after you've taken the Materia? :)

_________________________________________________________________________ WESTERN CAVE (North Corel Area)

Location: Cave next to a mountain lying on a square of brown land. There's a river running nearby. It's beyond the mountain footpath by the shallow part of the river near the Gold Saucer, on the Western Continent--there's another cave entrance by the river you need to cross. How to get there: Use a Blue, Black, or Gold Chocobo to cross the river to the patch of land where the cave is. Items to get: HP/MP Replace materia. _________________________________________________________________________

Inside this icy blue cave is a twinkling purple materia (HP/MP Replace).

_________________________________________________________________________ SOUTHERNMOST CAVE (Mideel Area) Location: Cave lying at the end of a penninsula on the north stretch of land on the Southernmost Continent.

How to get there: If you have a Blue Chocobo, land the Highwind on the patch of grass on the thin island near Mideel. Then use the shallows connecting the penninsulas to reach the area where the cave is. If you have a Black or Gold Chocobo, simply land on the grassy area near the cave and keep walking down the cliff and out to where the cave entrance is. If you have the Gold Chocobo, you can just walk southeast from the Chocobo Farm across the water to the penninsula where the cave is. Items to get: Random Magic Strike materia.

This sandy cave is empty, save for a blue pyramid-shaped object. If you examine it, you'll get a blue materia (Random Magic Strike).

_________________________________________________________________________ NORTHWEST ISLAND (Round Island)

Location: Oval-shaped island surrounded by mountains and trees that is in the northwestern part of the world. It is one of the Uncharted Isles (it doesn't show up on the map). How to get there: Use a Gold Chocobo to fly to the island and climb over the mountains. Dismount and enter the cave mouth that's at the edge of the forest. Items to get: Summon Knights of the Round materia. _________________________________________________________________________

This may be another empty area, but the red pyramid lying by the tree trunks is none other than the Knights of the Round summon materia--the most damaging summon spell in the entire game. Simply examine it to pick it up.

_________________________________________________________________________ YUFFIE'S SUB-QUEST

Location: Town of Uutai. You can go here in Disc 1 after you get the Tiny Bronco, or you can do this in Disc 2, once you have the Highwind or a colored Chocobo. You CANNOT do this in Disc 3, however. How to get there: Go to the southern end of the Westernmost Continent using the Tiny Bronco, Highwind, a Chocobo, or a Chocobo + the Highwind. You MUST have gotten Yuffie (though she doesn't have to be in the current party) in order to perform this sub-quest. Items to get: Kanzashi, Fuuma Shuriken, MP Absorb materia, Fast Thunder, Elixir x2, Peace Ring, HP Absorb materia, X Potion, Ether Turbo, Cold Ring, Universe Manual, 'Summon Leviathan' materia. _________________________________________________________________________

After arriving at the soutern tip of the Westernmost Continent, head north. There is a curving path that leads up to a high plateau. As you go along the curve (even if you are riding a Chocobo) you will be interrupted by Yuffie. The screen switches to that of a plain, and Yuffie runs up, steals your Materia*, and escapes, but not before leaving you with two Shin-Ra guards to contend with! The guards are easily beaten, though. If Yuffie was in your party when she tricked you, you'll have to fight the guards only using two people (in which case Barett will join the party afterwards, and if he's already in your party, then whoever isn't being used will join. Keep in mind that you can rearrange the party in whatever way you'd like afterwards).

* She can take 48-50 Materia (the number varies), and will steal them in this order of preference: Master Materia, Summon Materia, Independant Materia, Command Materia, Combination Materia and then Magic Materia. This means that it is possible to be left with a few materia after she has escaped. Note that if you're using the Materia Select Game Shark code and you have disabled Materia equipped/in your inventory, she'll steal them and you _won't_ get them back.

At this point, your characters will refuse to board the vehicle you used to get here (Highwind, Tiny Bronco, or Chocobo), insisting that they find Yuffie instead. If you were on a Chocobo when Yuffie stole your Materia, then you'll still be on it when the sequence ends, but you won't be able to board the Highwind, and if you get off the Chocobo, you can't get back on. If you use the 'Start with Gold Chocobo' code, then you can leave the island, but I don't know what happens if you do this sub-quest while riding a real Gold Chocobo. In any case, you can use the Chocobo to cheat and simply ride all the way to Uutai, Yuffie's hometown. If you're not on a Chocobo, you'll have to walk.

From the curving path, head north until you cross a bridge, then go west across a second bridge. Head southeast once you reach the other side; this leads to a north-bound path that runs under the bridge. Follow it and it will lead up to another bridge. Past the bridge, the land becomes flat and grassy. Keep heading north and you'll arrive at Uutai.

When you enter the town, Yuffie will see you and run away. Head to the upper-left corner of town. There's a path here that leads to a large courtyard and a pagoda. Enter the building to your right and walk along the hall until you arrive at a room with a man sleeping inside. Enter it and talk to the man. He is Godoo, Yuffie's father. Keep talking to him until he stands up, at which point Yuffie will appear and then be chased away by her father. If you follow Yuffie, you'll find that she has disappeared. Before leaving this area, enter the room next to Godoo's and examine the right wall. There is a hidden panel here that will open, revealing a passage. At the end of the passage is a chest containing the Kanzashi (a weapon for Red 13). On your way out, go into the room to the left of the entrance. You can come here and spend the night for free, but if you examine the scroll on the left wall, it will lift up, revealing another passage. The chest at the end of this passage has a Fuuma Shuriken (Wind Demon Throwing Star) inside it.

Return to town and go into the eatery in the southwest corner of town. The Turks are her! Talk to them all (Iriina, Ruudo, and Reno). When you are finished, go to the Item Shop. Normally, there is a woman standing in front of a treasure chest (preventing you from getting at it) but now she will have moved away. Open the chest and you'll get a MP Absorb materia, but Yuffie will drop down from the ceiling and swipe it from your hands! Leave the shop and go to the southeast edge of town. There's a building here near the entrace. Go inside and examine the folding panel to the left. Hiding behind it is Yuffie, who dashes away as soon as she is discovered. Chase her outside and go to the eatery. If you look at the jar standing outside the eatery, you'll see that it is moving. Approach it and press O to make your friends block all the exits. Then press O three times to make your main character hit the jar until Yuffie jumps out. Seeing that she can't escape, she'll lead your characters to her house.

Meanwhile, two Shin-Ra soldiers run into the eatery to meet with the Turks. After Iriina leaves, you'll find your characters in Yuffie's house. When she goes downstairs, follow her. I was sure that I found an item in this room once, but I guess I was mistaken...anyway, don't miss the Kamedouraku Flyer that's on the far wall when you go downstairs. Talk to Yuffie. When you can move again, examine the levers in the back room; you can pull the right lever or the left one. It doesn't matter which one you choose, since either one will make a cage drop on top of your allies! Yes, Yuffie has tricked you again. Examine either lever a second time to free your friends, then leave the house.

Return to the courtyard area where the pagoda is and you'll see that you can now enter the building to your left. Climb up the steps and examine the bell to ring it; this will reveal a hidden door. Beyond the door, you'll find Yuffie, who has been taken hostage by none other than Don Corneo, the mohawked pervert that tricked you back in the Wall Market. He has captured Iriina as well. Before chasing after him, open the chest to your right to find a Fast Thunder, and open the chest to your left to get an Elixir. Go up the stairs and you'll find yourselves in the altar room back in Godoo's house. Three Shin-Ra soldiers appear and attack you, allowing Corneo to escape. Kill the guards (they're the same as the ones that attacked you back on the curving path), then go outside.

Here, you'll run into Ruudo and Reno. Talk to them, then return to town and head to the northeastern corner of Uutai. There's a path here that leads up into the mountains, where huge Dachao statues have been carved into the rock. Talk to the Turks again as you follow the path, and keep going along the path until it splits. Take the path that goes north. It leads past a huge head to a crossroads. Ruudo is standing here, blocking the entrace to a cave. If you talk to him, he'll enter the cave. Go inside and open the chest in here to get a weapon for Cid. You can't get across the fire-pits yet unless you've gotten the Suishin x no Uroko from the submarine docks (see section 4i for more information on the Suishin x no Uroko, and section 4j to find out what treasure you can get from the fire-pits). There's a chest here that has a weapon for Cid in it, but I got it back in Disc 1 so I forgot (I think it's the Glow Lance or the Mop). ^_^; Talk to Ruudo again and then exit the cave and head south to find Corneo, who's tied Iriina and Yuffie to the face of a Dachao statue. When you confront him, he summons a boss to attack you.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: RAPUSU LV: 39 HP: 6000 MP: 300

This winged beast isn't that tough, but unless you were able to hold onto some Materia, all you can do is attack. Use Phoenix Tails and Hi Potions or other restorative items to heal your party, and you may want to use 'attack' items like the Harmfulness Material or Fast Thunder in order to inflict damage along with your normal attacks. Because of their high attack power, Red 13 and Vincent make the best allies to have in this fight. If you think you can make it without Vincent assiting you, then use his breaks to inflict lots of damage on the boss. You'll recieve a Peace Ring when the battle is finished.

After the battle, Don Corneo will ask you a question and you have three answers to choose from. Pick any one you like. Corneo threatens to kill Yuffie and Iriina, but then Reno and Ruudo show up and send Corneo to his well-deserved demise. Back at her house, Yuffie will give all the materia she stole back to your characters (including the MP Absorb materia).

You'll find yourself back in the World Map again, but I wouldn't leave just yet if I were you. Return to Uutai and enter the building near Yuffie's house. It's full of cats. Normally, there's nothing you can do here, but now you can climb up the steps in the back to find a secret passage. Walk north (towards the screen), to find a cat and a chest. Inside the chest is a HP Absorb materia. Take it and go back outside.

Now, head back to the courtyard. Enter the pagoda and talk to the man there, Goorikii. He'll inform you that if she wishes, Yuffie can fight by herself against the five guardians of the Pagoda of Five Strong. Choose the top option to accept and the bottom option to decline. After each battle, go up the stairs and talk to the person there, picking the top option to fight them and the bottom option to not fight them. You don't have to kill all the guardians in one go, and if Yuffie is killed in battle, the game won't end, although she'll have zero HP and will need to be revived before she can fight again. Your enemies are:

First Floor: Goorikii, a winged creature.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: GOORIKII LV: 30 HP: 3000 MP: 150 (weak vs. Wind)

Use Haste on yourself, then use the Certain Kill materia repeatedly in order to inflict lots of damage. Don't forget to heal yourself when your life gets low. The boss can use Barrier, but he's still easy to defeat. Yuffie gets an X Potion once she's won the battle.

Second Floor: Sheiku, a penguin-like monster.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: SHEIKU LV: 32 HP: 4000 MP: 180

Use the same strategy that you used against Goorikii. You might try the Barrier spell to reduce physical damage. His 'Furious Bomber' attack causes a lot of damage, but it will fill up your Limit Break bar very quickly. Yuffie will recieve an Ether Turbo when the fight ends.

Third Floor: Chehofu, a four-armed foe.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: CHEHOFU LV: 34 HP: 5000 MP: 210

Keep your HPs up in case you get paralyzed. Once again, using Haste, Barrier, and then attacking with the Hissatsu materia should do the trick if your attack power is low. Yuffie's prize for winning this battle is a Cold Ring.

Fourth Floor: Sutanifu, a creature swinging and iron ball.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: SUTANIFU LV: 36 HP: 6000 MP: 240

Fight him the same way you fought Sheiku. Without a doubt, the easiest boss of the Pagoda of Five Strong. If you win, Yuffie will get an Elixir from him.

Fifth Floor: Godoo, a three-headed monster. Note that he will automatically attack you win you talk to him.

------------------------------------------------------------------------- BOSS TIPS: GODOO LV: 41 HP: 10000 MP: 1000

Godoo's attack style changes depending on which head is facing you. He has many attacks, including the Tryne Enemy Skill and the ability to drain your HP. He will also use his supply of MP to heal himself for around 1200+ points per use. To beat him, deplete him MP supply by using the Ghost Hand item or Magic Hammer Enemy Skill (you can learn it from the Ashigirisous that live north of Uutai; they look like bunches of grass). The other way to beat him is simply Berserk yourself, assuming you have enough HP and your attacks do over 1200 points of damage. Your only other tactic is to stay alive until he runs out of HP and then attack him. You'll get Yuffie's Level 4 Limit Break Manual (Universe) once Godoo is defeated.

After Yuffie defeats Godoo, he'll give you the 'Summon Leviathan' materia.


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