How do I enlist additional members for my party?
You start the game as a lone Celestrian but soon the opposition will get so tough that you’ll want to enlist the help of other heroes by forming a party. This is done at the Quester’s Rest (which is the inn at the castle town of Stornway) and there are two ways to go about it:
1. If you want to play together with your friends via Nintendo DS Wireless Communications, talk to Pavo at the inn’s counter. Select the option “Invite Friends From Other Worlds” if you will be the one hosting the multiplayer session. If one of your friends is hosting the multiplayer session instead, you still talk to Pavo but choose “Visit Another World” from the available options. You’ll soon be playing together!
2. If you’re playing solo – or don’t have enough friends at hand to complete a party of four – then forming a party works a little differently. At the Quester’s Rest, go to the counter and talk to Patty. There you can create companions from scratch or call up ready-made characters. Whichever you choose, their skill level will be quite low, but as soon as they join you during your adventure they will grow in strength just like you. You can add up to three party members at any point, but you can always drop them off again at the inn if you want to swap them for another companion.
You are of course free to go it alone instead - but take it from us, as soon as the King of Stornway sends you on a mission, you’re going to appreciate the strength in numbers!
Which vocations should I choose for my party?
First things first: you can’t really go wrong in such a way that choosing a certain combination would make it impossible for you to continue. Similarly, there is no perfect combination of party members either. You’re completely free, then, to choose as you see fit – although you may want to take some advice to heart.
Balance is important in any team. Your main hero or heroine starts off as a Minstrel, which is a pretty balanced vocation in itself. For your companions you’ll want to add some variety then. Add some muscle to your party with a Warrior or a Martial Artist, whose attack power will grow swiftly. A Mage can also learn some very effective attack spells! Thieves are pretty agile, which can be beneficial in some battles, but more importantly they will learn an ability called Half-Inch that gives you a chance to steal items from monsters during battle. Last but certainly not least, if you don’t want to worry about bringing enough healing items into battle, you will want to consider topping up your party with a Priest.
Don’t be afraid to make the wrong choice here – you can always swap out your party members later. Better yet, when you make it to a place called Alltrades Abbey, your current party members will be able to switch vocations – and that’s where the depth of the vocations system really starts to reveal itself… But more on that later, in our Advanced Tips!
I played a multiplayer session with my friends but when I returned to my own game it was like the story hadn’t progressed at all!
If you play a multiplayer session, the progress of the main story is only saved in the host’s game, but as a guest you still get to keep all the Experience Points you built up and any gold and items you picked up once you leave the multiplayer session and save in your own game.
My party was wiped out in battle and now half of my gold is gone!
Ah yes, this happens… If your entire party is defeated in battle you will return to your last save point, but half of the gold you had in your pocket will be gone. Any gold you stored at the Rainbow’s End Gold Bank at the Quester’s Rest in Stornway will be safe though, so you’d best make it a habit to deposit your hard-earned cash there regularly – or at least when you feel a big battle could be coming up…
Help! I’m facing an enemy I can’t defeat!
At various times during your quest you will face “boss” characters. They tend to appear at the culmination of a particular town’s main mission and you have no choice but to fight them if you want to proceed. These bosses are particularly strong and it will require lots of skill to defeat them!
Sometimes though, your party is simply not strong enough yet to defeat the boss. If you think this might be the case it could be a good idea to leave the boss alone for a while and focus on other things you can do.
You could look for townsfolk who have Side Quests for you to partake in, or travel the land in search for items that you can use in Alchemy. Along the way you’ll invariably meet smaller monsters to battle with, and while it’s possible to avoid some of them, you will miss out on gaining valuable Experience Points as well as gold if you do. So go out there, battle monsters and gain experience so you level up and grow stronger! Metal enemies especially have been known to yield lots of experience when defeated…
Also make sure that you use the gold you earn in battle to buy the best equipment available in the shops and don’t forget to equip your party members with the weapons and garments that provide the most benefits for them. Soon you’ll be in the right shape to take on the boss that seemed indestructible before!
Just one more tip for the battle ahead: you’ll be in big trouble if you don’t have a party member that can heal your companions, such as a Priest, or if you don’t bring any healing items along for the fight! You will take damage so you’d better make sure you can replenish some health mid-battle. Good luck!
What are Side Quests and how can I take them on?
During your travels you’ll often come across various folk who need your help. This is signified by a blue smiley-face above their heads. Talk to them to hear their tale and they will make a request, which is not necessarily related to the overall story. If you accept their request then you’re ready to take on the Side Quest. Fulfill the conditions stated in the request and then return to the person who you’ve been helping to reap your reward!
Some Side Quests simply provide you with a free item or some additional gold, while others can have far-reaching implications for your main quest and the world as a whole. You never know what you might get from helping others…
Some Side Quests can be completed quickly, while others take more time. Unless specifically stated, you don’t have to complete them in one go and are free to do something else along the way. Bear in mind though that you can only have 10 Side Quests activated at one time. It can be that in order to take on a new Side Quest you will have to cancel another one that you already activated. If that happens, choose wisely which Side Quest you cancel. You can always come back to reactivate the quest, but it’s not a good idea to cancel a Side Quest that you were halfway to completing already!
Finally, there are also new Side Quests to download via Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection every week for one year from the game’s launch on 23/07/10. Talk to Sellma at the Quester’s Rest in Stornway and wirelessly connect to the Internet to receive all the downloadable Side Quests that have been released until that day. For more details, click here to visit the Side Quest Calendar at the official Dragon Quest IX website.