The Kingdom of Zeal, 12,000 BC
- After defeating Azala and reappearing on the world map of 65,000,000 BC, you’ll be faced with… a crater. Approach the crater and you’ll find a Gate. Enter.
- You’re now in a wintery new world. There’s remarkably little to see here, so leave your small cave and head east. You’ll find a small, technologically-advanced stationing the snow. (You can find a location to the west, as well, but it’s of no use to you right now.) The Skyway will zap you up…
- … to a fantastic new location. Welcome to the magical Kingdom of Zeal, a land where spells and enchantment aren’t only the norm, they’re the law.
- Leave the Skyway. There’s another a short distance to the north, but you should have a look at the nearby town of Enhasa first.
- There’s not a heck of a lot to do in Enhasa besides shop for basic items, to be honest, though you’ll learn a lot by speaking to the people. Of particular note is a little boy and his cat in the top left corner of Enhasa. You’ll see them again. Up here also is a blue floor tile which you can use to instantly restore your health.
- In another city you’ll find a clue which you can use to solve a quirky little puzzle in Enhasa. There are three books spread throughout Enhasa, and based on the clue you’re given you need to open them in a particular order, namely Water, Wind, and Fire. The Water book is on a table in the top right corner; the Wind book is on a table in the top left corner; the Fire book is on the table by the entrance. Opening the books correctly will trigger a secret passage behind the front desk. If you screw up the order, exit Enhasa and reenter to reset the puzzle.
- In the secret room you’ll find a Nu who will invite you to a challenge. Accept and you’ll have to fight six, count ‘em six, Nu. This is a tricky fight that you’ll want to end as quickly as possible, because with some bad luck the Nu can kill you in one round. You ideally want two characters with either an all-hitting or line-hitting Double Tech to smack away at the Nu while your third character heals everybody each round. It doesn’t matter how much HP is restored so long as you stay away from one HP on any character. Robo and Frog are prime choices for healers. You’ll get a Magic Capsule and a Speed Capsule for winning the battle, as well as a buttload (90!) of TP.
- Take the Land Bridge to the north after wandering around Enhasa. The continent where you appear will guide you to another Skyway and back up to Zeal, where a second town awaits.
- Kajar is a little more easy going than Enhasa. Wander around, chat with people, and note the Nu selling basic items in the middle of the first area. Later he’ll sell you armour and weapons.
- Go through the right door in the north of the larger area. Up the stairs on your right and flush with the southern wall is a hidden Speed Capsule. Also here is a Nu who will give you a Magic Capsule if you scratch him juuuuust right. You’ll learn how to scratch him properly in Zeal’s final location.
- Back to the main areas. As with Enhasa, Kajar has a book puzzle, and they need to be opened in the same order. Water is on a table in the top left corner; Wind is on a table in the bottom right corner; Fire is on the Nu’s counter in the centre of the area. This will open a secret room where you’ll find a strange doll. Inside the doll is a Black Gemstone. This accessory will only be useful if you decide to bring an optional character into the party in a little while; for now it’s absolutely worthless.
- Kajar’s done. Exit and, if you feel like meeting an NPC early, head to the Blackbird docking station to the west. Otherwise, enter the cave east of Kajar and use the teleporters beyond to zip up to your next destination. (People who want to win every damned battle in the game should save before entering Zeal Palace, as it’s a miniature point of no return.)
- The seat of power. As ever, have a chat with the people of the Palace and get a sense of their extreme egocentrism. Yeesh.
- The Nu with the scratch point is wandering on the bridge just north of the entrance. Agree to scratch him to learn how deal with his kind, then return to Kajar for the aforementioned Magic Capsule.
- Speak to the woman in the bottom-left corner of Zeal Palace’s main area, standing beside a potted plant. She’ll ask you if she should burn the plant or secretly plant it. Telling her to plant it will open up a side quest in another time period. You should absolutely tell her to let the plant live, as you get nothing out of seeing it burned.
- After chatting with the natives, head to the chamber in the top right corner of the area. You’ll watch a cut scene featuring two important NPCs in one of the rooms beyond (that kid and his cat are back). Follow Schala out of her room and to the central doorway in the main area, where you’ll see her go through one of those odd black doors that you probably noticed in 2300 AD. Hrm.
- Return to the main area and take the door on the far left this time. It leads to the Mammon Machine, the siphon for Zeal’s power. Approach and interact with the Mammon Machine to power up Marle’s Pendant. Now it can open black doors and black boxes. Score!
- Assuming you want to win the next battle, heal following Schala through the black door. If you don’t feel like winning… well, eh, you don’t need to, really…
The Golem is a tough, tough boss at this level. Its normal attack inflicts a disturbingly high amount of damage, and if you hit it with a physical attack it will retaliate with a strike that will instantly half the attacker’s HP. Ouch. The Golem will also retaliate against any elemental magic by changing elements and thereafter using attacks of that element. You need to take advantage of these elemental shifts, as none of the Golem’s magic attacks do much damage compared to its non-elemental attacks. I recommend putting Lucca in the party to serve as a fiery point man, performing Dual Techs with Crono or your third character, while the remaining fighter heals everyone as needed. Equip everybody with Ruby Vests and most of the Golem’s attacks won’t do a heck of a lot of damage. Make Ayla your third party member and you should have little trouble keeping your HP up… so long as luck is on your side, anyway. The Golem will end the fight with one all-hitting, non-elemental attack, but so long as your HP is in the 150s or above you should be fine.