FFXII: The Best Early Game WeaponsThis post may contain affiliate links. If you buy something we may get a small commission at no extra cost to you. (Learn more).
It’s probably fair to say that Final Fantasy XII isn’t a very well-balanced game.
There are a lot of ways to become stupidly powerful within the first two hours of gameplay.
You can either chain rare game monsters with Vaan to get lots of experience, or farm skeletons on a bridge for LP.
You also have a selection of overpowered weapons to choose from that you can get very early in the game – I’m talking less than ten hours.
Let me walk you through what the best early game weapons are in The Zodiac Age, and how to get them.
Equipable Job: Uhlan
There’s a lot you can do as just Vaan in the beginning of the game to give yourself a huge head start.
One of the simplest things is going for the Heavy Lance.
You can start the journey for this after creating a sunstone and Penelo leaves the party.
Head to Nalbina Fortress to get some Phoenix Downs (and if you need money, Trial Mode stage 1 has Diamond Armlet you can sell) and then make your way to The Midfault in the Damascan Westersand.
We’re here for one rare game: Fideliant.
Fideliant is a skeleton dude that has a 20% chance of spawning whenever you enter The Midfault.
He’ll typically appear at the top of the map, near the center.
Give him a Phoenix Down and he’ll be done, awarding you with lots of experience – and if you’re lucky, a Heavy Lance!
The lance doesn’t have a great drop rate, but it’s enough that after a few encounters you should get the goods.
Equipable Job: Shikari
Getting the Gladius, a wind-based dagger with an impressive 56 attack power, is more a test of patience than anything else.
The first step is to get to at least level 10, which is easy if you utilize either the Dustia or Fideliant rare game monsters to level up.
Next, go to Galtea Downs in the Westersand and start killing wolves.
Once you’ve defeated twenty of them (it doesn’t have to be a chain), head to the southern exit of the Downs that leads to the little secluded area of Shimmering Horizons.
The Lindburn Wolf appears here if you’ve beaten twenty wolves.
Do not worry about beating him! He’s pretty difficult.
Your goal is actually to steal from him, and this is where that patience comes into play.
Run in there and attempt a steal from the beast. It has a very low chance of success, but if you fail you can just get chomped and load the autosave from when you entered the area.
It might take a bit, but when you eventually snag a Gladius, then beat feet out of there ASAP.
Equipable Job: Foebreaker
For this one, you can really power up Vaan in the beginning, but it’s just easier to wait until you have a few more party members.
Gather the team and head to the Dry Giza Plains, specifically the Starfall Field area.
Near the south of this zone, you’ll find a pack of wandering werewolves.
These big bipedal lupines are what you’re after.
Werewolves drop the Slasher, an axe with 54 attack power.
The drop rate is really low unless you get a level three chain going. And even then, it’s only 7%.
Still, the time will fly by, and you’ll start getting lots of loot anyway.
Werewolves hit for about 250-300 HP, so it’s best to have your own hit points close to a thousand and good gear besides.
You can do this with just Vaan, if you get the Gladius and grind to level 15 at least.
But honestly, it’s easier and more worth your time if you just wait until you have a party to help out.
Equipable Job: Archer
This one is much less involved than the previous two.
It doesn’t involve any rare game trickery or low-chance steals.
All you have to do is be of an appropriate level and have cleared the Tomb of Raithwall (and really, both things will probably happen at the same time).
Once you get back to the Rabanastre area after Raithwall, get your stuff together and head for the Estersand.
Go north until you get to the South Bank Village and take the boat across to the aptly-named North Bank Village. From here, continue north until you get to the area called The Broken Sands.
In this stretch of desert, you’ll find big birds called Dive Talons.
These are your marks.
The Burning Bow has the same drop rate as the Slasher, but Dive Talons are tougher customers – and they fly.
You can handle it, though!
Chain them hard and you’ll get the drop before you know it.
You can even get more than one if you’re all about the archery life.
The Burning Bow has a whopping 77 attack power and boosts fire magic, meaning it’ll make stuff like Firaga and Ardor even better.
Equipable Job: Bushi
This will take some doing, but it’s worth it.
After you’ve finished up the Tomb of Raithwall and get back to Rabanastre, go get the spell Vanish (if you haven’t already).
Use whatever means you want to get to Nalbina Fortress and hire a Chocobo from the nearby Moogle. While riding, the guards to the north will let you through.
Welcome to the Mosphoran Highwaste!
You’re not supposed to be here for a while yet, but we can do what we want!
The first step is to ride north through the first two zones of the Highwaster (Southern Skirts and the Summit Path) to get to the Babbling Vale, which is a friendly area with a teleport save point.
Activating this will also save you some travel time later.
Now head south back to the Summit Path area.
Two chests can spawn in the northeast part of the zone, and one of them will be the Kiki-ichimonji. This is where Vanish comes into play.
Make the team invisible and stealth your way along the northern edge in search of chests.
If they haven’t spawned, reload the last autosave and try again.
This isn’t too hard, just a little nerve-wracking. Eventually the chest and sword will show up!
The Kiki-ichimonji is a katana with 70 attack power and a very respectable 20% combo rate.
At this point in the game, it’ll be very strong, and help you plow your way through all the battles yet to come.
Equipable Jobs: Knight, Time Battlemage
Make sure you’re at least level 20 for this one.
After you return from Raithwall and after you’ve completed both the Flowering Cactoid hunt and the Desert Patient side quest, you can go after the Deathbringer sword.
The Desert Patient side quest gets you the Barheim key, allowing you to return to the Barheim Passage from the entrance in the Estersand.
Once inside, go north to the North-South Junction area and hit up the handy teleport save crystal.
Now it gets sketchy.
Go back south, then east to the Special Op Sector 5 area. Along the northern side of this area, behind a boulder, you’ll find a conspicuous chest that turns into a mimic.
This mimic is a rare game called Ithuno and it’s too tough to beat right now.
But it’s not too tough to steal from!
Get in there and steal your hearts out. Remember, if it kills you, no biggie: just reload the quick save.
Get lucky and soon you’ll have stolen a Deathbringer sword!
And you can get as many as you want by leaving the zone and trying again.
The Deathbringer is an absolute beast for the majority of the game.
It has 83 attack power and a 12% chance of instant KO on-hit. It’ll make whoever you give it to a tremendous asset to the team.
Equipable Jobs: Knight, Bushi
The best early-game weapon is also the easiest to get.
Seriously, it’s such a breeze that you’ll wonder why even make you do anything at all.
You’re going to need a full party of three first, so it’s best to wait until before heading to the Tomb of Raithwall (though it can be done with just Vaan and Penelo too if you level them up to at least 20).
Once you have the party set, save your game, return to the title screen, and enter ye old Trial Mode.
In Stage 3 (yes, that early) you’ll fight a crew of Cactoids, with a Flowering Cactoid among them.
Just steal from the Flowering one, that’s it.
It’s a rare steal, sure, but you have all the time in the world – especially if you clear out the other Cactoids first.
It’s so easy to get a Karkata, and you can do it multiple times to get a whole party’s worth!
The Karkata has a 92 attack power and confuses on hit 100% of the time.
If you’re looking for a way to break the first 60% of Final Fantasy XII, this is it.