Square Enix’s latest classic-style RPG is Bravely Default II, a game I really wasn’t expecting to see. But it’s here, and if you’re a fan of things like Job Systems, you gotta get your hands on it. But unlike games like Final Fantasy V, the systems in Bravely Default II can be a bit overwhelming. There’s a lot of information to process, and some things aren’t explained beyond a few words on a tutorial slide.
After playing Bravely Default 2 for just a few hours, I noticed several aspects of the game that could be easily overlooked. Not every player explores every nook and cranny, but Bravely Default II really likes to reward attention to details. That said, we do guides here at Prima Games, so reading this before you play might help you hit the ground running. These are some early game tidbits I think are more helpful than obvious.
Bravely Default II Tips and Tricks
Mow the Lawn!
yes, cut grass. For some reason, this game lets you chop at grass patches on the overworld, almost like a Zelda game. But unlike a Zelda game, you can find way more than money. It can be a little slow and awkward, but taking a second every now and then to chop at some grass and bushes will net you valuable items like Tents and JP Orbs, and even equipment a step up from what you can get in the nearest shop.
Learn Brave Math
The Brave/Default risk/reward system is an obvious key to this whole series. But it isn't just about sneaking in extra turns. It’s also a key to smart grinding and enemy management. Braving all the way on turn one seems like a bad idea, but once you get a feel for your damage output it’s actually the answer to getting through many regular enemy encounters. Just make sure to be careful when you find a new foe.
It’s important to know what you can and can’t do when it comes to choosing a subjob. When you choose one, you get access to any abilities you’ve unlocked. But you won’t earn additional JP, so it’s truly a supplemental choice. Basically, that means you don’t really need to worry much about this until you start mastering multiple Jobs. You can also choose any passive from any Job you’ve unlocked, so that’s a third pillar of customization to consider.
Undeserved Underdog Bonus
Gauging enemy strength versus your own is pretty important. Enemies will charge you as a sign they’re still a threat, or run away when you’ve outleveled your surroundings. But there’s a twist. For the Underdog bonus, which nets you extra points for fighting a tougher enemy, there’s a slight loophole. If you pick a new job, the game considers that job’s level for the bonus. So chasing down weak enemies if you’ve just swapped to a new job can be worthwhile for a little boost on your way out of a dungeon or something.
Grinding is easy with a friend
At various points in Bravely Default II you’ll get an additional guest character for your party. You can’t control them, but they’re often powerful and an endless resource for healing. The first one, SLoan, is especially great as he allows you to skirt by encounters you really wouldn’t be able to otherwise. That makes grinding in the first few hours a blast, especially if you hang out around the top of that first area on the map.
While you’re taking advantage of Sloan to grind up JP, another way to get a good boost early on is foraging. This is an early skill the Freelancer gets, and it can net you similar items to the ones you can find cutting grass. Dedicating one or more characters to forging while Sloan handles the dirty work can really pad up your inventory without spending all your cash.
Run away to save the day
There are points when you’ll accidentally bump into an absurdly powerful monster, or one of the special encounters that will kill you fast. Luckily you can even run from those, and that monster will despawn. So don’t panic!
While you’re out there grinding, you’ll get all kinds of weird drops. Monster treats are quietly some of the most important items for mastering jobs. Using those will lure extra monsters in, letting you engage in chain battles for more EXP and JP bonuses.
Don't work for "exposure"
Unlike in the real world, freelancing in Bravely Default II really pays off. The starting Job is an odd one, giving you skills that don’t seem great (but are actually great), and it gets stat boosts from mastering other Jobs, which seems pointless. But if you master that Job right away you’ll get some seriously good passive skills, such as a pretty huge JP boost, status recovery and more. New Jobs are exciting but mastering the starting point is far from a waste of time.
Read the HUD, bud
there’s a lot of information on the screen at once in this game, so much so that it can be layered over itself. The button helpers often hang out around the screen’s outside edges. It's easy to just not take them in while you're focused on the game. Take the time to learn what they do, because you’ll need to drill down often for extra information, and do things like target multiple enemies with one spell.
This is just early game stuff, as I’m just getting started myself in Bravely Default II. But forcing myself to take in as many smaller details as I could is really going to help me out as I get my footing here. This game can sneak up on you if you let it, so having information fast and early is a big deal. So here’s some of that! I hope it helps.