Bravely Default, and indeed the JRPG genre as a whole, can be difficult to understand for the new player. There’s random battles, a mass of fancy looking menus and, in the case of the Bravely series, a whole lot of different jobs to choose from. Small wonder that people bounce off the genre then, returning rather to their simple FPS click-to-win. Some tips for Bravely Default you say? Why yes, that is exactly what we’re here today to write about! We’ve compiled 5 of our best bits of advice for those new to the game. Experts may also learn a thing or two, though if you initially professed to be an expert and you do learn something, we’ll probably judge you a little bit. Just a little, honest.
Try Every Job
We’re starting with a simple one: Try every Job for a least a while before you condemn them. Sorry what? Asterisk? No, we’ll call them Jobs thank you. Now this might sound terribly simple, but we’ve fallen into the exact same traps that most players have, and we’ll give you an example: We found Merchant, messed with it for a few minutes, realised it didn’t do much damage and the weapon proficiency stats were terrible, then moved back to our current levelling jobs. Sounds familiar?
Well in that case, we missed the detail that More Money, the level 9 Merchant ability, stacks if multiple members use it at once. So when you get to the late game towns and can’t afford that new swag equipment, guess what you could have been doing? That’s just one example, but our overall point stands: Experiment with Jobs. Level them up, really get to know them. You’d be surprised how good every single one can be in different situations.
Do Those Side Quests
Whilst we could argue semantics with some of the content in Bravely Default, all of the side quests (or Sub-Scenarios) lead to those new Jobs we just told you to try! They’re usually quite short, the locations and experience that you’ll get are quite a nice bonus, and you get to play around with something different upon completion – what’s not to like? They’re also pretty well tuned for the level at which you unlock them, so if you return and do them later be aware that they’ll be completely devoid of any challenge. Besides, we’d argue this game is almost entirely about the Job system, so go get them all!
Should you persevere with Bravely Default, and we wholeheartedly encourage you to do so, you’ll eventually reach a point where it becomes somewhat… Samey. You’ll know what we mean when you get there. So whilst it’s almost sacrosanct to mess with the encounter controls in a JRPG, don’t be afraid to turn them off at some point. There’s only so much that one person can experience the same dungeon, with the same enemies, over and over again. So give yourself a break, we won’t tell anyone if you don’t.
Or perhaps you really, really love the grind, and coincidentally you’ve just discovered that turning everyone into a Black Mage and spamming AOE moves renders every random encounter trivial, akin to a free box of experience and money? Well then, whack that encounter rate up and watch your precious bars fill with tasty, experience based goodness!
Once you’ve played the game for a little while, you’ll no doubt have noted that the world is littered with blue chests that you’re unable to unlock. The usual questions will arise, like why can’t you open them, and what’s hidden inside?
All of these questions will be answered later on, just keep your eyes peeled on an airship floor later in the game. Rest assured, these aren’t your basic, Dragon Quest style of respawning vendor loot boxes – these are actually worth coming back to grab. Their contents won’t break the game, but they’re certainly worth the small amount of back tracking required to collect.
Our final tip is going to be another obvious one, but one that belies hidden depths. Give yourself some time to really, really experiment with the Job system, seriously. JRPG games pride themselves on depth, and the Square Enix style of games tend to run very deep when it comes to mechanics. Bravely Default is no different. Some of the abilities that Jobs learn will initially feel abhorrent, or out of place, but they’re all designed to interact with other Jobs in a fun and interesting way.
We could sing it’s praises for hours, so we’ll just leave you with some of our favourite examples:
- Four Black Mages, buffed by Red Mage passives.
- Arcanist & Red Mage can generate BP by inflicting self damage.
- Valkyrie & Multiple Buffs completely remove groups of enemies.
- Many, many more.
- In fact, we should probably write an article about our favourites…!
This is the true end game of Bravely Default, so get out there and get creative! Let us know your favourite combinations and we’ll try them!
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