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Northern Ruins, 600 AD
- To the north of Choras, the small town in the southwest corner of 1000 AD’s world map, you’ll find the Northern Ruins. Enter, though, and you’ll find your way blocked by a violent, phantasmal figure that you can’t kill or even pass. Bring Frog into the fight and he’ll recognize the creature… though you still can’t pass.
- Jump into the past, to 600 AD. The Northern Ruins are now accessible… to an extent. Much of the Ruins are, well, ruined. You won’t get very far. Head into the basement (left staircase) and take out the Ghost Knights guarding the place. These creeps are quite painful to fight, both because of their painful normal attacks and their MP Buster strikes upon death, and should be eliminated quickly with your most powerful Dual Techs. You’ll need to destroy eight of these things in all to clear this floor of the Ruins.
- This spot is now permanently free of enemies. Leave the chest on the right side of the corridor alone for now and head back out of the Ruins. Visit the local Tavern and look for a man drinking inside who complains of missing tools.
- Jump to 1000 AD and visit the Choras Inn. A man here is busy drinking. He’ll agree to let you borrow his Carpenter’s Tools. Speak to his wife in the Residence south of here to pick up said Tools.
- Return to 600 AD and speak to the man in the Tavern to give him the Tools. Follow him to his Residence and speak to him again to learn that he has a full team of workers. They’ll set about repairing the Northern Ruins. Follow them into the Ruins and you’ll discover that they’ve patched a few of the floors, though they can only do so much while there are monsters in residence.
- Go up the stairs on your right. Inside you’ll face several Flesh Reapers and Fallen. Flesh Reapers can reduce your HP to one in a single hit, so you want to take them down quickly. Elemental attacks are your best bet. Make sure you clear out all three squads of these bony blighters.
- Return to Choras and speak to the carpenter again. He’ll offer to repair the Ruins for 2,000 gil this time. Pay up and the team will head out. They still won’t be done upon arrival back at the Ruins, but there are now more accessible areas.
- Head downstairs to the area with the Knights that you cleared first. You can now get through the door on your right. Put Frog in your party (and Magus, if you want to see him squirm a little) and, after a touching cut scene, you’ll get an upgraded version of the Masamune. This will act as Frog’s best weapon for the remainder of the game. Woo!
- Return to Choras and pay the carpenter another 2,000 gil to repair the upper floor of the Northern Ruins, now called Hero’s Grave. It’s fully-repaired, and you can get to every part of the structure. Wipe out the foes in the far north of the top floor, namely some Flesh Reapers, Fallen, and physically-resistant creatures called Souls. Magic is a great help here.
- There are plenty of chests in the north. Do not open them. That said, you can interact with the black boxes down here, and you should… just don’t actually open any of them. You’ll see why shortly.
- Jump forward to 1000 AD. You can now start opening chests. There’s a Turbo Ether in the basement and an Elixir on the second floor. The black boxes on the second floor contain items that will be upgraded now that you’ve interacted with the boxes in the past: the first box contains Nova Armor that upgrades to Moonbeam Armor, the second contains an Onimaru that upgrades to a Suzaku, and the third contains a Siren’s Kiss that upgrades to a Valkyrie Bow. These nabbed, you can return to 600 AD and open the same chests and boxes to get a second set of these items (though the black box stuff will not be upgraded, and the weapons won’t be much use to you).