In the world of Ni no Kuni there is a unique creature called the Toko. This creature is notable for the substantial amounts of EXP it and its advanced forms are worth. Hunting down and defeating just one Toko can boost your party by several levels! But where do you find these elusive creatures and what's the best way to hunt them? Three varieties of Toko are available for hunting at various points in the game, each worth more EXP than the last and giving you great options for leveling throughout the game.
Your first available encounter with Toko is shortly after you get your ship. Sail far north along the eastern coast of the Summerlands to a series of islands north of the continent. The largest is called Swan Island but the one you really want is a small island south of Swan Island called Ugly Duckling Isle. This island is populated primarily by some very familiar faces and is the only place where you can find and recruit Mite, Thumbelemur and Seed Sprite (other than the ones you receive at the beginning of your journeys). Be wary though, they are far stronger than the ones you started with! Just don't forget that the real reason you are here is the Toko, a squat little pear-like creature with legs and ears. Occasionally you will find one in a battle with the other monsters on the island or wandering around on the world map.
It's pretty obvious Tokos know how much EXP they are worth, because they will run at the first opportunity. If you see one on the world map, try to sneak up behind it because it will bolt as soon as it sees you. Once you've caught one on the world map or encountered one in battle, you only have a few seconds to defeat it before it runs away. Make sure your party's targeting is set to attack the leader's target. As soon as you send your familiar into battle, call for an All-Out Attack. Tokos are not particularly sturdy and put up little-to-no fight, so with everyone targeting one it will fall quickly (there is even a 2% chance you will recruit it!). The biggest difficulty in hunting Tokos on Ugly Duckling Isle is the strength of the other familiars in the area. Although it is possible to hunt Tokos right after receiving your ship, it is recommended you wait until you reach Hamelin and finish the events there.
Before moving on to the other forms of Toko, it's time we discuss the most important tool in your arsenal for grinding out EXP. If you have been keeping up with Horace and solving his riddles in each of the city hubs throughout your adventure, you will have amassed a few handy spells. The final stop for all of these is in Perdida. Once you have entered the city and solved Horace's final riddle, he will give you the Veil spell. This is the single most important spell available to you in your quest for Tokos. Veil allows you to run about without any monsters noticing or attacking you! This spell helps immensely in tracking down and hunting the next two forms of Toko.
The second stage of the Toko family is the Tokotoko. These mischievous creatures can first be found after taking to the skies with Tengri. Northwest of Hamelin lies the city of Perdida and while you cannot enter it right away, the valleys below the city are home to the Tokotoko. Should you find one, they are worth just over 8000 EXP apiece, more than any other monster except the final boss! Hard to pass up, right? Use the same tactics as you do with Toko, ensure that all party members will attack your target, and, as soon as you start the battle call for an All-Out Attack. Also, like Toko, it may not be good idea to hunt them as soon as you are capable of reaching them. The other enemies in the area are quite strong at that stage and it is best to wait until you have gathered all three of the magic stones and are able to enter Perdida itself. That way, you can learn the Veil spell to make your hunting easier. With Veil in hand (or book), you can march up and down the valley safely until you see the Tokotoko without worrying about the other monsters in the area. Until then, you may be better off sticking to Ugly Duckling Isle.
The final form of Toko encountered in the wild is a real doozy. These little fellows offer up a whopping 24,000 EXP a pop! That's nearly three times the amount given up by the game's final boss and far easier to boot! The only place that you can find Tokotocold is in the Ivory tower. On the second floor of the tower, just before the final teleporter is a large, C-shaped hallway. This is the one and only place in the entire game where you can find these elusive creatures. Fortunately there is a waystone very close by. Even still, be prepared to spend several minutes running up and down the hallway before finding one (even while using Veil to avoid other encounters!). Use the same tactics as the other Tokos to bring them down and watch as your entire party gains two or more levels each time!
As you can see, it can be well worth it to track down these little critters to beef up your party. Tokos are particularly useful if you've just metamorphosed a familiar and want to get it back up to speed as quickly as possible or if you want to max out a familiar's level before metamorphosing to maximize their maximum stats. Of course, you can always just buckle down and grind things out the old fashioned way, but since the creators of the game were kind enough to add the Tokos to the game, why not take advantage of it?
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