|Final Fantasy IX owned by Square Enix.|
Images used for educational purposes only.
The final area. There are no chests here, no hidden secrets, and no deviations along your path, just a straight jaunt to the last three battles of Final Fantasy IX. This is not as easy as it sounds, as the only random enemies you'll fight along the way are crystalline versions of the Fiends you fought on your way through Memoria. They're not quite as strong, but you're still in for some rough battles if you choose to fight.
It's worth noting that these Fiend copies do not give experience. They do, however, provide a buttload of AP. If you have any Abilities that need learning, this is a good place to do it.
Just before you reach the final portal you'll hit a save point. Use this. It's the last one in the game, and you can use it to jump aaaaall the way back out of Memoria, if you like. Beyond the next portal is a cut scene, and when it's done you're facing one nasty boss.
The final no-namer boss battle in the game, Deathguise can be either really easy or really hard. It starts the fight with Meteor, which inflicts random amounts of damage, up to around 5,000 points, to every character. If your luck is really bad Deathguise can decimate your whole party before you get a turn. Assuming you survive - which you probably will - Deathguise will follow up with single- or multiple-hitting physical attacks. If it folds its wings it will swap to magic instead, using Twister, Death, and Lvl. 5 Death. The last two can be utterly useless or completely devastating, depending on your luck and level.
Deathguise should be murdered as quickly as possible, before the instant death attacks come out. Heal up in the wake of Meteor, then go to town on it with physical attacks, Slow, and ice or wind spells. Restore yourself as necessary. No need to be fancy, really - just decimate the thing before it starts one-hitting your team.
Zidane can Steal an Elixir, a Black Belt, and Duel Claws from Deathguise.
For some reason Kuja will give you the opportunity to return to the save point and heal up before fighting. I highly recommend doing so, if only to avoid fighting Deathguise again.
Oh, Kuja. Your final showdown with the big bad of Final Fantasy IX is appropriately dangerous. Kuja, as ever, is a lover of spells, and he'll spend most of the battle casting Holy and Flare on your party. Every now and then he'll heal himself with Curaga or use Reflect, and if your characters start casting Reflect on themselves he'll use Flare Star instead. Flare Star is probably his most dangerous move, as it ignores Reflect entirely and can hit for two to three thousand points of damage to everyone in the party. He also begins using Flare Star as a counter to physical attacks when his health is low.
Your strategy isn't too complex. Mash Kuja with everything you've got from three of your four characters while the fourth is constantly ready to heal the rest of the team. Focus on straightforward physical attacks until Kuja starts countering, then use special attacks (Throw, Thievery, stuff like that) to dish out the remainder of the pain. You can bounce spells off of a Reflected character, if you want, though you risk getting hit by Flare Stars more often if you do. Bird Killer and Man Eater are both useful Abilities for the battle.
Zidane can Steal an Ether, a White Robe, and a Rebirth Ring from Trance Kuja. Considering you can't save after this point, there's honestly little gained in trying to nab these items, especially since he can hurt you so badly while you're making the effort.
After defeating Trance Kuja you'll watch a bizarre cut scene, and get the chance to swap your party around. Shortly after this they'll get healed up, and you'll get one final chance to mess with your equipment. I highly, highly recommend equipping at least the following Abilities on your characters:
- Body Temp
- Clear Headed
- Bright Eyes (for melee characters)
- Loudmouth (for magic users)
Ready? Time to face the big-bad-after-the-big-bad of Final Fantasy IX.
Time for the pain. Necron is not quite the hardest boss in Final Fantasy IX, but he's probably in the top three. Necron has a wide selection of attacks, and he uses them all way too often:
- He can use the -ga level spells, Firaga, Thundaga, and Blizzaga, against your whole party. These do over 1,000 points of damage typically. Not too bad.
- He can use Flare and Holy on a single character. They do about the same damage as Kuja's versions of the same spells.
- He can use Blue Shockwave, reducing one character to a single point of health.
- He can use a spell called Grand Cross, which will hit your characters with virtually every status ailment in the book, including, occasionally, outright killing them. This is why you equipped all those status negating Abilities beforehand.
- He can use Neutron Ring, typically right after Grand Cross, which hits everyone in the party for major damage. This combined with Grand Cross is sometimes enough to wipe your team out.
- And, for his own protection, he can - and will - use Protect and Shell to buff himself.
Heal your team up immediately once Grand Cross and Neutron Ring are finished, hopefully not requiring too much time to do so, then go back on the offensive and start pummelling Necron again. Dispel any buffs he has to make the most of your attacks, and buff your own characters with Dagger, Eiko, and / or Quina if you get the chance. Casting Auto-Life (Quina) or Aura (Amarant) can also protect your party from being murdered horribly and requiring a revive.
The key to defeating Necron is to not despair over the intensity of his attacks. Though he's incredibly powerful, Necron has about as much health as - and sometimes less than - the bosses you faced in Memoria. There may be moments where you're down to one character and seem poised to face defeat, but it doesn't take that many solid hits to wipe Necron out. Make sure you use all your really cool items, too, as this is the end of the game, and there's no better place to start slinging Elixirs.
Zidane can Steal four Elixirs from Necron. This is handy in a pinch, but you're usually better off just having Zidane wallop on the big guy.
If you manage to win, congratulations! You have completed Final Fantasy IX! Enjoy the ending - and note that it changes a liiiiiittle bit if you have the Hammer from the Stellazzio quests.