Today, I’ve completed Grandia. It required computer skills, the usage of a guide I wrote and quite a lot of time, but I did it. From now on, though, instead of converting my PlayStation games to EBOOT, I’m getting them from other sources.
I Defended Zil Padon (More or Less)
After the Tower of Temptation, I went to Zil Padon. There was a big story moment where we got a hint of Feena’s powers and how they worked with Justin around. Then, the city got destroyed and I had to go back to J Base, to regroup with the Garyle forces and figure out the next move.
For this, I needed to get through Luzet Mountains again, but this time, all the monsters got boosted by Gaia’s powers, so I was getting a nice amount of experience, mostly for Justin. Once I was finally at J Base, another big story moment happened and it was time for the dramatic “the night is darkest before the dawn” part of the story. Feena decided to sacrifice herself to save the world, Justin didn’t know what to do and everyone abandoned him.
The story took me back to Zil Padon, though I didn’t have anything to do with it, it just happened. Once there, it was time for the “dawn” part of the story. There was a big and touching reunion and after a huge realization, a portal appeared, which led to the Spirit Sanctuary.
I’ve Cleared the Spirit Sanctuary
This was a big and slightly confusing dungeon, mostly due to all the see-through floors on top of each other. I got a couple of nice item upgrades while in there and eventually, got to the boss – the Mage King. This was the same type of enemy as the ghost boss from the Castle of Dreams and it was even easier to beat this time. Focusing on the head allowed me to kill it before it even got a chance to attack.
I Switched to pSX
After the boss, I got the Spirit Sword in one of my favorite scenes of the game, I got out, there was an animation and the game locked up. It’s official. The ISO I’m using to play Grandia sucks. I took a break here and, after a couple of hours, used the method I already wrote a guide for to transfer my save to my laptop. I ended up continuing my game on the pSX emulator, instead of transferring back to the PSP after I got past the freeze point.
By the way, I think pSX is my new favorite PlayStation emulator. It doesn’t have the advanced graphical filters of the ePSXe, but it’s simple to use and it runs flawlessly, without any stuttering or glitches, which ePSXe can’t seem to get rid of. It’s probably much closer to the original than ePSXe to.
pSX – The Easy-to-use PlayStation Emulator
UPDATE: The official site went down for some reason. Here’s an alternative link to download the emulator from:
The above link seems to be down quite often. If you find yourself unable to view it, you can try the official forums for the emulator.
In any case, I continued playing, but I had to restart the Spirit Sanctuary from the save point, which was basically at the start of the dungeon. I got all the items again, fought the Mage King again and got the Spirit Sword again. Luckily, the pSX has a fast forward feature, so I was able to speed through most of the battles and load times, making the replay a lot faster and less tedious.
I Got to the Final Dungeon
I got out and it was now time to go back to J Base, enter the underground and get to Gaia. My goal was to destroy the Spirit Stone inside Gaia’s body. Now, at this point, I didn’t have Feena in my party. I wouldn’t have her again until the second part of the dungeon, taking place inside Gaia’s body. Because of this, Feena fell behind in levels a bit.
The first part, inside an ancient Icarian city, consisted of several levels, each filled with powerful items and huge groups of enemies. The later part was especially awesome, because Justin was getting close to a whole level, or sometimes even over a level of weapon experience after every fight, and most fights ended with just a single use of Dragon Strike. I though he was getting ahead of everyone else earlier in the game, but now, he was really getting ahead. I think he probably got about 50 extra strength just from the battles in the final area. His Spirit Sword allowed him to recuperate SP, so he never really ran out between save points.
I Got Feena Back
Once I finally go to Feena, there was the last big plot part and a duel with Mullen. After that, I got control of Feena and was able to enter Gaia’s body (it’s not weird, I swear). From then on, I was getting a bit less experience, but I was still gaining weapon or magic levels in every fight. Finally, I got to the last few rooms and fought the boss battles.
First, I fought the final form of Baal. He was all monster in this last fight, without a trace of the general remaining. I used Dragon Wrath here, thinking I needed to save skill points for the final battle, but I ended up getting several Gold Potions afterwards, so there was no reason to save up.
I Beat Gaia, Twice
The final battle against Gaia was in two phases. I should have foreseen this, because it happens in almost every JRPG, but I didn’t, so I ended up wasting most of my SP in the first phase. This means I used mostly critical attacks in the second phase, but it also means the first phase was over in about a minute, so it evened out. I think I had to heal a total of once and that was during the battle with Baal. Gaia was just incredibly easy. Its two turrets, or whatever it was, died in two Heaven and Earth Strikes and its body died after the third one. Thanks to criticals, the second form managed to act just twice or trice and it only used pathetically weak spells, so there wasn’t any danger.
The fight was over, Gaia was destroyed, the world was reborn, everything resolved itself in the best way possible and the credits started rolling soon. After that, I got treated with a nice “years later” scene with a grown up Sue meeting Justin and Feena again, after years of adventuring. I didn’t see Justin or Feena, but I did see their kids.
As expected, before the final battles, Justin was miles ahead of everyone else. He learned all his spells and skills, and his stats were sky high.
- 291 Strength, 111 Vitality, 347 Wit, 94 Agility
- 328 HP, 235 SP, 99 MP Lvl1, 99 MP Lvl2, 57 MP Lvl3
- 95 Sword, 60 Mace, 36 Ax
- 70 Fire, 33 Wind, 24 Water, 57 Earth
He could use more Vitality and Agility, but his other stats more than offset the slight lack of these two. I think I could have easily soloed the final three battles with just Justin.
- 125 Strength, 78 Vitality, 181 Wit, 125 Agility
- 207 HP, 93 SP, 82 MP Lvl1, 74 MP Lvl2, 42 MP Lvl3
- 36 Dagger, 33 Whip
- 36 Fire, 25 Wind, 19 Water, 13 Earth
Feena is supposed to be the agile spell caster of the game, based on her available weapons and spells. I never really trainer her high enough, though. She’s a speedy caster, with most of her spells targeting groups of enemies, but she got behind Justin and never really got the chance to catch up. Her agility was supposed to be high, but it didn’t end up being much higher than Justin’s.
- 161 Strength, 80 Vitality, 172 Wit, 165 Agility
- 225 HP, 138 SP, 54 MP Lvl1, 36 MP Lvl2, 30 MP Lvl3
- 36 Dagger, 19 Sword, 40 Ranged
- 18 Fire, 5 Wind, 8 Water, 2 Earth
I got Rapp late and he didn’t start out with any spell levels, so he never really got a chance to train in those. He has great speed and decent SP, thanks to having access to three weapon groups. The only reason he had as much MP as he did was because I used most of the MP Up items on him.
- 196 Strength, 98 Vitality, 167 Wit, 79 Agility
- 195 HP, 80 SP, 97 MP Lvl1, 58 MP Lvl2, 30 MP Lvl3
- 34 Staff/Mace
- 20 Fire, 21 Wind, 18 Water, 26 Earth
Liete starts out with a lot of spell levels and only one weapon skill. Because of that, her MP actually went ahead of her SP. Her stats actually ended up being on par with the rest of the group’s, not including Justin, mostly because I used a lot of stat up items on her.
Grinding in Grandia
I ended up not grinding a lot in Grandia (I love saying this), because the game was easy enough as it is and I don’t see a huge point in doing it once I’m able to clear all the optional areas.
However, it should be said that it’s absolutely possible to grind quite a bit in this game. With enough time, it might even be possible to max everything. Weapon and spell levels are easy enough, but maxing all stats might also be possible, because all of the enemies in the Tower of Temptation actually drop stat up items. I’m sure I’ve seen a Def Up and Pow Up (Vitality and Strength) as well as an MP Up (raises all three MP levels by 1) and an Agility Up. I can’t remember seeing a Wit Up, but there are enemies in the tower that I mostly avoided because they could outright kill my party members. It’s very likely that all of the stats in Grandia can be maxed.
In any case, the game is over now. I’ll write up a quick review tomorrow, but in the meantime, I’ll go back to Link’s Awakening and Tomba!. I also have Gothic to get through, but I can’t go back to that until next week.