Reaching the post game, Grotto diving portion of Dragon Quest IX is to find yourself exposed to a whole new game. You see, despite its significant length, the story portion of this game is but a small distraction to its monstrous end game. Where DQ8 had its monster arena and ascending super bosses, here we find an almost endless amount of random dungeons, replete with powerful enemies, bosses and the best loot that the game has to offer. If you’re anything like us, seeing your team equipped with the latter of these things is an allure that cannot be ignored, so it’s best to prepare yourself with the following crucial pieces of advice.
Master Of Arms
- Mastery of weapons is crucial.
Many players tend to enjoy the spice of life when it comes to the DQ series. Often you’ll find people choosing to toy with a variety of different armaments, discovering their intricacies and then moving on to the next. Such things are encouraged, but the post game of DQIX contains encounters that should be taken very, very seriously. There’s no room for a unit with a paltry 60-70 points in Swords and the same in Bows here. You’re going to need some serious firepower, particularly the kind that can only come from the complete mastery of weapons, and the resultant skills that come from it.
There are some small exceptions of course, like a Thief or Ranger designed entirely for Half-Inch item gathering, but if you’re looking for a party member to actually succeed in battling opponents, then you’ll want to max out whatever you’re swinging.
Shields Are Flapping Essential
- No really, Shields should be on every single party member.
Yes they’re that good, yes we removed an actual expletive and yes, we really do mean every single party member. The class system in DQIX allows you to carry over the skills that have been learned, which includes equipment, and whilst we’ll certainly entertain arguments about the efficiency of certain attacking equipment, with Shields we will not. The addition of defence alone is highly useful, especially in such hostile environments as Grottos can be, but it’s the Block chance that truly takes them over the edge. The ability to occasionally completely ignore incoming damage is incredible, and we consider the damage reduction skills that it grants to be crucial in ensuring that your squishy members survive.
Don’t Skip Defence Day
- The Resilience stat makes a massive difference.
Now, we’re not about to consider this more essential than the Shield, but it’s still a piece of advice that can make your life a great deal easier. The Resilience stat is essentially your defence in DQIX, and no matter how powerful your damaging attacks may be, there absolutely will be bosses in Grottos that will demolish you. To counter this, we would advise that you do your best to gather as much Resilience as possible, mainly by levelling through the Warrior and Paladin vocations. Our absolute best advice would be to level both to the maximum on every party member, because they’ll all benefit from the Resilience whilst also gathering things like HP, however at the very least you should go through one of them prior to picking a main class. Combine this with learning Shields for some ultimate efficiency towards the end of the story and you’ll do well.
- Shop equipment doesn’t cut it any more.
This is likely to sound obvious for long-time veterans of the series, but shop bought items will come nowhere near cutting the mustard in the post game. Items and equipment created via Alchemy will significantly outperform these, and taking the time to craft these is essential to your progress in high level Grottos. It’s worth noting however, that this doesn’t mean they aren’t a great starting point. Upon the completion of the DQIX story, shops will expand their inventory, and tend to include equipment that form the basis of late game Alchemy recipes. The Boss Shield for example, available from the Dourbridge secret shop, can be transformed into the Big Boss Shield, which is a good starting point in the post game, or the Heavy Handwear from the same which can be transformed into options that suit multiple classes. Our eventual point is that if you want to get anywhere in high level Grottos, you’ll need to get very familiar with the Alchemy pot.
It’s Farming Time
- Free world map loot can make your life easier.
Speaking of Alchemy, wouldn’t it be nice if there were a place where you can gather all kinds of loot that will make your life easier? Especially now that you have an epic, golden flying train? It’s no secret that most recipes tend to start out life relatively simple, something considered even more true for consumables, so it’s time to take advantage of this fact, get your gathering shoes on and collect your way around the world. We’re not about to claim that fantastic equipment will sprout out of the ground, but valuable Ores and the like can be found all around the world map, and you absolutely should take advantage of it. This, combined with regularly taking on powerful enemies and Metal Slimes, should form the basis of your late and post game equipment crafting strategy.
Categories: Dragon Quest IX