FF9: The Best Side Quests In The Game, Ranked

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Final Fantasy IX is an older RPG, released in 2000 back before games were as linear and railroaded as they are nowadays.

And before a large icon and a checklist could tell you everything about the next quest… or side quest.

So there are a number of amazing quests in FF9, both for world building and for gaining cool new equipment and skills. These are completely missable without knowing about them ahead of time.

I’ve brought to the table my personal favorite sidequests that FFIX has to offer.

And I’ve made sure to include exactly how to start the quest, as well as any obscure missable events that could cast your questing progress into the void.


10. The Nero Family

The Nero Family Side Quest in FF9

This sidequest is tricky, but really provides some fun world building.

The player can meet Benero and Zenero’s entire family in Lindblum.

Although the actual reward is a Protect Ring (a measly reward at best), it’s nonetheless amusing to see Zidane’s reaction to all the siblings.

The quest can be initiated as soon as Disc 4 starts. Just backtrack to Tantalus’ hideout in Lindblum to find the two main brothers.

Afterwards, enter Memoria and between every cutscene and boss fight, return to the hideout to meet a new sibling.


9. Frog Catching

Frog Catching FFIX Sidequest

This quest is on the opposite end of the spectrum from the previous one:

It doesn’t build Quina much, but it will lead to Quina’s best weapon, as well as massively buffing their Frog Drop skill.

The end result of this quest is a boss fight with Quale, after which Quina receives the Gastro Fork.

Be warned, however, Quale doesn’t play around.

To initiate this side quest, simply enter the frog zone of any Qu’s Marsh with Quina in the party. This can be done as soon as they’re recruited on Disc 1/2.


8. Excalibur II

Excalibur II from FF9

Not quite a sidequest in the usual sense, but this one is pretty straightforward:

Defeat Lich in Memoria from a new game in less than 12 hours, and pick the sword up to the right of the doorway afterward.

Now, this seems crazy because that is a long game to be bumrushing. But the payoff is Steiner’s strongest weapon, and it hits like a truck.

What makes this quest noteworthy is that the sword comes with a letter signed by Enkidu, which is related to the next quest if you know your Final Fantasy…


7. Ragtimer

Ragtimer in Final Fantasy IX

The Ragtime Mouse!

This one is cool because it really lets you show how much you don’t wanna talk about the amount of time you’ve played this game if you can complete it!

Jokes aside, the Ragtime Mouse’s shtick is that he appears in a random encounter with the friendly monster theme.

He’ll ask you a question about the world of FFIX, and you have to attack either the True or False symbols to answer.

If you get it right, you’ll get some gil and a ton of AP.

Get it wrong, and… well…

Should you correctly answer all his questions, you’ll receive a Protect Ring and a fat payout of gil. So it doesn’t hurt to complete this quest if you want a quick buck.

Note: the mouse can only be encountered in forests on the world map.


6. Stellazio

Stellazio Side Quest in FF9

Upon arriving in Treno in Disc 2, you can meet Queen Stella.

The Queen collects the Stellazio coins, named for the Zodiac signs. Handing each coin in nets a reward.

The quest itself is pretty straightforward. But by far the best reward is the Blood Sword, which Steiner can equip.

It heals him for the amount of damage he deals. (Being Steiner, that number is pretty high)

That reward alone is what gives this quest its place on my list.

You can also collect some other items including a Robe of Lords and a Hammer, so this quest is worthwhile for that coveted Treasure Hunter rank.


5. Kupo Nuts

Kupo Nuts FFIX Sidequest

Aw nuts!

The Moogles in Gizamaluke’s Grotto are absolutely kupo’d up for these treats.

This quest nets you some good rewards, including the Aloha T-shirt.

The reason I like this quest so much? Simple.

Baby moogles!

Every time you return to Gizamaluke’s Grotto on Disc 2 on, there will be another little moogle running around in the safe area. They’re just so adorable!!


4. Mognet

Mognet Side Quest in FF9

Now this one’s a bit messy.

The quest presents itself to you right at the beginning of the game – arguably during the prologue, even.

The Moogle Mail Network – AKA Mognet – has been really sporadic with deliveries lately.

For this quest, you’ll have to deliver letters moogle to moogle throughout the story of the game.

And eventually, you find out the cause of the Mognet crisis.

I love this quest purely for the world building. Seeing what the moogles have to say to one another really gives a sense of life to the story.

Spoiler alert: You’re gonna want to kick Artemicion for a field goal by the end of the side quest, assuming you don’t miss any letters on the way.


3. Stiltzkin

Stiltzkin FFIX Sidequest

This traveling moogle adventurer appears in various spots, mostly dungeons, offering a sale on items.

While the idea of a moogle traveling the world on his own perilous adventures is completely precious, it’s also impressive. Because this quest really illustrates how hardy moogles are.

This lone moogle is able to navigate into dungeons that usually have the player’s party limping with single-digit HP and 0 MP, seemingly totally unscathed. Maybe we should ask him to join us?

The payoff is the best part though:

Should you purchase every item at every chance, Stiltzkin will sell you a Ribbon. Thanks, little buddy!


2. Friendly Monsters

Friendly Monsters in Final Fantasy IX

I had a debate with myself on which sidequest to put at #1: this, or the following.

But Friendly Monsters is at #2 because it’s just a hair more frustrating.

Throughout the world of Gaia, you might occasionally encounter a monster with the wrong color palette and slightly less frightening features, asking you for items.

Should you give them the requested item, you’ll receive a gem stone and a large amount of AP, making this quest particularly helpful for learning new skills.

The final friendly monster, Yan, will grant you the ability to hit resident superboss Ozma with regular attacks as well (if you’ve helped all his friends out).

Overall this quest is cute, and has a payoff that’s useful against Ozma.

But ultimately is only useful against Ozma, which costs it the top slot.


1. Chocobo Treasure Hunting

Chocobo Treasure Hunting Side Quest in FF9

This is the most important sidequest in the game.

On the way to Gizamaluke’s Grotto in Disc 1, you may hang a right and detour into the Chocobo Forest.

In here, you’ll meet Mene the moogle along with his beloved friend Choco. Come the end of the scene, you can now ride Choco as a mount, should you have Gysahl Greens handy.

Riding around on Choco is already pretty nice because it prevents random encounters from happening, and speeds up your travel speed by a lot.

The real fun is in Chocobo Hot & Cold, in which you ride Choco around the area digging up treasures in the forest (and later, other Chocobo areas as well).

Should you dig up a stone called a Chocograph, you can take Choco around the world map and hunt for treasures ranging from an accessory and some items, all the way to some characters’ ultimate weapons.

Choco also evolves and progresses, learning how to swim, climb mountains, and fly.

It offers a really heartwarming story about Choco coming into his own as a Chocobo and it’s just wonderful. Easily the best side quest in the game.

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