|High Sea Saga Guide ✍|
Helpful Tips Edit
- The number of combat team members is determined by how many stars the character has in the first position of the team. Five stars allow for more crewmates on a combat team.
- Hire as much crew as possible at the beginning to be part of your combat and non-combat teams. This can help to increase your rank easier at the beginning state.
- Don't be afraid to use items to power-up your strong character and have him/her change job continuously. This can help you to beat difficult battles.
- Avoid relying too much on attack solely and neglect defense and speed. A character with low defense can be beaten very easy while a character with low speed can barely hit the opponents.
- Put Shops close to each other together with the buildings/environments that boost the houses to get max profit and fast G's
- To ease the games battery consumption, try setting the game's quality to low. Which may increase the battery life by about 20 percent while playing the game.
- Capturing enemies in combat (the skill Territorial helps) and then turning them in at your base or a prison is a good source of gold, as well as turning in prisoners after winning online battles.
- You can get crew in the Dice Game. At higher levels of the dice game, you can get ones with high stats, better jobs, and more stars. A good idea is to play the dice game at the 1st, 11th, 21th, and the 31st every month since the Dice Game costs are halved.
- A good way to get money fast is PVP but spend as much money you can on cannons before you go to the hard walkthrough.
- A good way to get medals fast is by installing kairo club and download many paid kairosoft games.
- Fill your non-combat crew as soon as possible, the 1-2 medal cost people are great. Place them in an area where they can max out on skills. Leave them alone for a while as you play the game. They'll help with ship functions. When you don't need them anymore, dismiss them. It will save all their unused knowledge as books. I had ~20 people that got dismissed this way, all maxed out at 20 knowledge of each type, and ended up with 400 melee, ranged, sailing, curiosity, etc. books. This method is great for shifting the knowledge to front row tank characters for quick leveling.
Another helpful tip, depending on your level a genial good idea is to put strong sword troops in the front line, follow by a line of spear line or troops with rifle and the end line put your wizard protected by good monster or strong units (note if you lost your wizard in a battle you will lose all your monsters temporarily for the duration of that battle. Remember no wizard no calls for monsters till is full heald )
Maximizing Noncombatants Edit
Monsters can only do limited types of actions compared to Crews. But their presence can be maximized with the right monsters. Best monsters for this role is UFO and Titan Jr.. Both monster types have a very very high movement speed allowing them to do their duties a lot faster than any other type of monsters.
Recommended final job for all noncombatant crews is Ninja. For the same reason as with noncombatant monsters, Ninja's skill allowing them to move at a very fast speed. Ninja, however, requires at least 8 mastered jobs to change into one. Choose jobs that need low-level to master to quickly create a ninja. However, there are some jobs that are recommended due to their mastered skill that can be very useful to set later.
Economical skill is a must-have for all non-combatants. It gives some chance for the crew not to pay for facility cost when using them.
Islander is a very good skill when one aims to level the island facilities. It has a chance to trigger a major boost to any island facilities' xp.
Shipmate skill is very useful for those aiming to max ship facilities level. It gives a major boost to ship facilities' xp when a crew is using them.
Thrifty allows crews that pick up gold bag (mainly from deck battle drops) to get extra gold from it. It's not a major boost but Trader is one of the jobs that have the lowest level to master so there's no reason not to master this job.
Original Jobs that are recommended to be non-combatants :
Try to get as many as possible. Their ability gives them a 100% chance to get money when using ship facilities. However, the ability's effectiveness depends on the current crew level. So to fully maximize this, any crew that has tycoon ability should be max leveled.
This job is a must to have to keep the ship's activities going even when the location's activity are exhausted. Their ability allows them to resupply food at an extra 100% gain than any other job. Combining this job with some tycoons and crews can keep using ship facilities without needing to rely on to resupply at ports and still can gain money.
An optional job to consider using especially for those that play the dice game a lot. Only need 2 to get the maximum benefit.
Same with the bookie, this is optional. Having some sailors on board can give some extra boost to ship's speed. Only need 5 of them for maximum benefit.
This is a good option to have. Their presence allows faster stamina regeneration which is always a good thing. Only need 6 to get the maximum benefit.
Again a good option for noncombatant. Their effectiveness will drop if there are not researching making them just like ordinary crew.
Very useful to have some of this job if planning to build a lot of island facilities. Otherwise, they are not really recommended to have.
- Smith, Trader, Genius, Dealer.
Try to get at least 1 of each. Shops on board is an always a good thing although it's not exactly a steady source of income in all situations. However, they are still useful due to the Onboard Shop system.
Not exactly a good option to have as a noncombatant. But they do reduce stamina needed to travel using ship.
Onboard Shops Edit
Crews with Jobs (Original or Current) of Smith, Trader, Genius, and Dealer will change their Cabin to also functions such as shops. When visiting an active (activity is not exhausted) island that has buildings built, citizens from the islands will visit the ship's shops to spend money. If the shops have merchandises in stock, the respective store satisfaction for the island will also increase. When respective satisfaction bar for each store is full, citizens of the island will gift an item and the satisfaction bar is reset back to 0 again.
Restocking shops' merchandises are done by doing research in the lab. Whenever there's an empty merchandise slot, research will always generate merchandises that will be distributed to shops that have empty merchandise slots.
| Shop Types|
| Egg Color Up (G)|
Egg Color Down (G)
| Melee Book|
|Smith Ticket (Wpn)|
| Egg Color Up (R)|
Egg Color Down (R)
| Ranged Book|
|Smith Ticket (Head)|
| Egg Color Up (B)|
Egg Color Down (B)
| Sailing Book|
|Smith Ticket (Arm)|
| Egg Color Up (P)|
Egg Color Down (P)
| Curiosity Book|
|Smith Ticket (Acc)|
Easy Starts Edit
Accumulate medals by using Kairo Club daily bonuses. You can transfer other Kairosoft games between devices using apps like ShareIt. After accumulating enough medals, spend them all on Dice game.
It will be better if you can take advantage day-of-the-month bonus that gives 50% discount on all dice games for a day. These day-of-the-month bonuses at every 1st, 11th, 21st and 31st day of each month.
By winning Dice Games, you will accumulate many useful items and crew members that will be useful when you just started playing the game.
Tips to get certain powerful monstersEdit
So you have five-star eggs, and you want to hatch powerful monsters, what combination should you use? Below are some combinations that can increase your percentage of success up to 50% (because you will always have a chance to hatch blobbin). Just save your game before hatching, get the number right, hatch using egg incubators, and if you got blobbin, exit the game and retry. (You can always trade egg color up in Sally Prin's)
- 169. Baelzebub 2: Green 400-500, Blue 400-500, Yellow 200-300, Red 200-300, Purple 200-300, Black 0-500 (33% chance) 3 g 3 b 1 y 1 r 1 p 0 b 2 rainbow = 11
- 168. Firaj 2: Green 0-500, Blue 400-500, Yellow 200-300, Red 400-500, Purple 100-200, Black 0-500. I used the following color up: 4 blue, 2 yellow, 4 red, 1 purple, 1 rainbox and success on first try.
- 167. Skully 2: Green 200-300, Blue 100-200, Yellow 200-300, Red 400-500, Purple 400-500, Black 100-200 (50% chance) 1 g 0 b 1 y 3 r 3 p 0 b 2 rainbow = 8
- 166. Thanatos 2: Green 0-500, Blue 100-200, Yellow 400-500, Red 100-200, Purple 100-200, Black 400-500 (50% chance) 0 g 1 b 4 y 1 r 1 p 4 b 1 rainbow = 12
- 165. King Wairobot 2: Green 400-500, Blue 400-500, Yellow 200-300, Red 200-300, Purple 200-300, Black 0-500 (33% chance with Baelzebub 2)
- 164. Spikeon 2: Green 0-300, Blue 100-200, Yellow 300-400, Red 400-500, Purple 200-300, Black 0-500 (50% chance) 0 g 1 b 3 y 4 r 2 p 1 0 b 0 rainbow = 11
- 163. Drazilla 2: Green 300-400, Blue 100-200, Yellow 100-200, Red 400-500, Purple 200-300, Black 0-500 (50% chance) 3 g 0 b 0 y 3 r 1 p 0 b 2 rainbow = 9
- 162. Sassa 2: Green 300-400, Blue 300-400, Yellow 100-200, Red 0-500, Purple 100-200, Black 0-500 (33% chance) 4 g 4 b 2 y 0 r 2 p 0 b 0 rainbow = 12
- 161. Froggle 2: Green 0-500, Blue 100-200, Yellow 0-200, Red 100-200, Purple 300-400, Black 0-500 (33% chance) 0 g 2 b 0 y 2 r 4 p 0 b 0 rainbow = 8
- 160. Collasquido 2: Green 0-400, Blue 200-300, Yellow 0-400, Red 0-400, Purple 0-400, Black 400-500 (20% chance) 0 g 3 b 0 y 0 r 0 p 5 b 0 rainbow = 8
- 159. Gillan 2: Green 300-400, Blue 300-400, Yellow 100-200, Red 0-500, Purple 100-200, Black 0-500 (33% chance with Sassa 2)
- 156. Rock Golem 2: Green 0-400, Blue 200-300, Yellow 0-400, Red 0-400, Purple 0-400, Black 400-500 (20% chance with Collasquido 2, Undead Cap'n 2, Rex 2)
- 169. Tonatona 2: Green 0-500, Blue 100-200, Yellow 0-200, Red 100-200, Purple 300-400, Black 0-500 (33% chance with Froggle 2)
- 151. Undead Cap'n 2: Green 0-400, Blue 200-300, Yellow 0-400, Red 0-400, Purple 0-400, Black 400-500 (20% chance with Collasquido 2, Rock Golem 2, Rex 2)
- 148. Rex 2: Green 0-400, Blue 200-300, Yellow 0-400, Red 0-400, Purple 0-400, Black 400-500 (20% chance with Collasquido 2, Rock Golem 2, Undead Cap'n 2)
Nightmare mode - walkthroughEdit
This page discusses replaying the game again on nightmare mode and contains many tips along with some relevant content from other pages. There are a *lot* of ways of playing this game, so please contribute your suggestions as well. Part of the allure of playing a Kairosoft game is figuring it out - the help and rules are sparse, so consider these hints spoilers if you don't want to know. High Sea Saga is a bit extreme, it suggests all sorts of ways to optimize teams and battles and organization, however, it can take a week to test out some ideas. Coupled with the fact we only have 1 save spot, it makes sense to collaborate with others to see if our ideas have merit or if they will end in frustration and regret. Please make ample use of the comments section below to share the progress!
First off, don't bother trying to replay this game in hard or nightmare mode until you've finished the game on normal difficulty and have gotten bored. There are many reasons to try nightmare mode:
- You can replay the first 2 countries over 2-3 days and re-live the bulk of the game and then quit.
- You can upgrade your equipment to obscene levels and finally be triumphant on most of your online battles. (except for the cheaters)
- And finally ... you may have a high tolerance for pain and want an extreme challenge! As others have noted, there is no new content to unlock, except that some quests have "extreme monsters" added to them. You can choose to play a part of this or the full game. If you complete this walkthrough, it will likely take you 2-3 months, as your front row people need ~180,000 HP and 2nd row ~100,000 HP. Equipment upgrades and the hearty skill will only help a little bit - you'll need to grind your people through all jobs about 30 times or so for the front row.
While I was able to complete the game in normal mode in about 6 weeks without buying a gold pass or medals, this is not reasonable with Nightmare difficulty. I bought the gold pass for 1 month and made it to the pirate seas. I was able to complete the rest, a bit slower, without a gold pass. If you buy the gold pass, I recommend canceling it soon thereafter so you don't get charged again. For Android, you'll still pay for and be able to play it for the full month, it simply won't auto renew. Why? Medals! Keep in mind you'll probably want to upgrade 2-3 weapons over level 1000. If you use Smith Ticket2 from the special store, it will cost 32 medals to upgrade a weapon (and other items) 9 levels. This works out to be ~3500 medals to upgrade past level 1000, or ~10,000 medals to do it for 3 sets of weapons, armor, etc. Free play gives 10 medals a day, while gold pass boosts that to 30 medals a day. You can use various tips to boost this 15x/day, so the gold pass can be enhanced to allow you up to 450 medals or ~100 levels of upgrades a day [Reader Note: this is an outdated information, older HSS version have an exploit that have since been patched. See comment section]. At this rate, it will take 10 days to bring one set of equipment up to level 1000 or >30 days to do it for 3 sets of equipment. You're likely to have other things going on in your life and not want to play the game 24x7 so this can stretch out from 1 month to 2 to 3 months. Also, you will have to re-hire your crew if you want to keep them, and this costs medals. The cost is much cheaper if you have a gold pass!
Phase 0: How to Wrap up Your Normal Mode GameEdit
OK, let's start with your game in normal mode, assuming you've finished all quests and are getting a bit bored. Here are some tips for you before you replay in nightmare mode:
- After level 50, the special store will have "Create Replay Data" for 25 medals. This is a static snapshot of your team when you purchase the replay data. It will add a Replay button to the main screen, and you can use it multiple times to replay the game from this save point. Don't purchase replay until you're ready to move on, as any additional play after this point won't be saved in the replay data. Also, you only have 1 save spot, so once you select replay and start again, it will replace your old save files. If you don't prepare before you replay, you can't go back and try it again!
- Food is saved, equipment/items (and their upgrade levels) are saved. Great! The last & hardest dungeon gives lots of food. Increase your inventory as much as you can and stock up! I maxed out at 990 slots per item and had ~400 Kairo Cakes when I restarted. This helps quite a bit in Phase 2, halfway through nightmare mode when you need to upgrade/feed your people tons.
- Money is NOT saved, so spend it on upgrading ship cannons or upgrading equipment. Don't spend it on relics as they are not saved and will need to be repurchased later. Don't worry too much about $$, it is easier to get in the first part of nightmare mode when you upgrade your equipment lots and win most of the online battles.
- Ship structures are NOT saved, but it does remember your upgrade levels. Others report that Kairo points are kept, so sell ALL your ship structures. The directions imply you keep your ship structures, but that didn't work for me.
- Your ship is not saved (of course), so you'll need to redo quests, build it back up to level 4 and place down all your ship structures again. I recommend taking it easy and just placing down cabins, holds, labs, and brigs only and playing through the first 2 countries first. If you choose to continue at that point, you can put down a nice ship layout and optimize it a bit.
- Important: visit the Special shop and purchase items with medals that you think you'll need. The Rank resets to 1 when you replay, so it will take a long time to get them again. You may wish to level up a bit just to get the best Special shop items.
- If you choose to use monsters in your front row as tanks, then I strongly suggest you select the best possible monsters now & upgrade them as much as possible. The final Kairo Islands repeating quest gives tons of high-quality food, and it will be a long time before you can grind for food as well in nightmare mode. Note that LX sized monsters will not be available until you reach a high rank after your replay, so you'll need to have some high-level people in your front row until then.
- I strongly recommend renaming your characters! For myself, I assigned the first position of each combat team a 1, and the first combat team got the suffix a, the second b, and so forth. I followed it up with a single name. So my first person on my first combat team is "1A Abby", the first person in my second combat team is "1B Bert", etc. This makes it easy to know who's important to rehire first, who should be placed in the first row if you get the combat placement upgrade, and who is who when scrolling through the 60 person crew list looking for the right person. I also have 6 people with the cook ability (reduce stamina regen time by 10 secs) named Cookie1-6, and 6 people focused on research named Research1-6.
Good luck going forward, there is no going back!
Phase 1: Relive the Glory DaysEdit
For the first 3-7 days, just have fun. Collect as many medals as you can, rehire most of your crew, start upgrading your best equipment, fight and win online battles, and relive the bulk of the game by completing the first 2 countries. I found this part to be the most fun.
If you haven't adopted a good battle lineup and set of equipment yet, do this before you move on. One approach is to do lots of online battles to build up your gold and use it to acquire equipment that is hard to get from quests. (like monkey guns, prin spears, and wairo shields) Look at how others are organized via online battles and see what is most effective.
There are *lots* of ways to configure your teams and no one right way. For sake of discussion, I'll share what I've done, as it gives a good example of thinking through tradeoffs. First I have 4 combat teams that can head into battle, and I purchased the ability to organize them any way I want. The first person in each team is the "front row" of tanks, while the last person in each combat team is the 5th row and hidden until people start dying.
- Everyone: falcon helm, legend mail, legend ring
- Front Row: tanks! highly leveled up characters, prin spears, wairo shield. Skills are spear master, defender, hearty. Since we don't have skill slots for healing, play with various abilities. I like "Cause x1.25 damage to monsters" (Original job: Major) and "Get more research items from battle" (Fisher). Avoid SP consuming abilities.
- Row 2: spear guards + healing, prin spears and wairo shields too. Skills are: heal 3, spear master, defender. Most have the ability: "absorbs 5 SP when attacking" (Dancer).
- Row 3-5: gun-toting healers: monkey gun and some wairo shields. Skills are: heal 3, gun master, and defender or hearty. Most have the ability: "absorbs 5 SP when attacking" (Dancer).
- Row 5: This is where I put non-combat abilities, like "can bring monsters on quests" (Wizard), "use cannons in ship battles" (Sniper).
- Exceptions: A few scattered people have "cancel enemy support skills (uses SP)" (Sumo), "Double unit's aura duration" (Ruler), "spear attacks remove enemy auras" (Lancer). Don't go wild, huge chains of monsters mean that these people will stop healing after a while when SP runs out. (since they can't have the absorb 5SP ability as well and the Fairy Shield doesn't seem to work well in back rows)
To get here, I used online battles to get >15 Monkey guns, >10 Prin Spears, and >10 Wairo shields. Once I maxed upgraded Wairo shields, I got them for everyone.
Here are some other thoughts on team organizations - please add your thoughts too!
- Front Row needs to be tanks - high HP is a must! But ... do they focus on defense or offense? Whenever I've tried high defense, I seem to die quicker. This seems logical as the front row not only has the highest HP but also the highest Atk. For me, I've found they work better as an offense to get rid of the damage causing monsters.
- Your team can be all people - this is how I played it, and nightmare can be conquered.
- Your team might be able to be all monsters - has anyone made this work?
- A hybrid is also possible, where your front row is monsters, and the rest are people or some other fraction. See phase 3b below for a lot more detail. I investigated this path & think I've proved it will work.
There is no quick and easy solution! If you go the full people route, you'll spend time grinding the front row up to 180kHP, the second row up to ~100kHP, with maybe just 30-40k HP for rows 3-5. That also involves grinding to get your equipment up to date as well. If you go the monster route, it will take 1-2 weeks to fill out your monster guidebook, then another week and maybe 3000 medals to get lots of special monsters and upgrade them to rank X. Count on a week or two per monster to grind on food and upgrade to the max level 1200. Thus it's not very feasible to do all monsters, and if you only do the first row as monsters, you'll still need to grind & upgrade your people and equipment for the other rows.
I found the people upgrades to be a lot more tedious as they require a lot more clicking to keep changing jobs. For monsters, you can just feed them all your food and grind for more food. But ... monsters have a cap, and I don't think there is one for people. So you might feel regret once your monsters can't be built up any higher, or if you pick the wrong monsters and need to start all over with a new set.
Phase 2: Ramp up Equipment Upgrades!Edit
After you finish the 2nd country, you'll notice that things are hard! Time to start upgrading your key equipment as much as you can. It makes a tremendous difference to your player stats. You can save some medals by upgrading base items to their new max and then using them at the blacksmith to boost key equipment to level 100-150. You'll need to drastically update your front line "tanks". If these are people (they are for me), then it pays to wait a bit until falcon helm and legend ring boosts your int to the 8,000-10,000 range. (along with ship duty == ship duties only, the Hermes skill, and the red carpet walkways) Thin armor is a huge boost as well. The high int and other things make them learn Melee and other knowledge types *much* faster.
Each difficulty mode increases the max equipment level. However, we now have an interesting puzzle. In normal mode, the max level goes up linearly with the importance of the weapon. With the harder modes, the max level is no longer linear. We want to upgrade the best equipment as rated at its max level and we don't know what that is anymore. Here are the ones I've worked on so far. Please add anything you've found too!
All known nightmare mode equipment max value stats
|Weapon||Kairo Blade||>61||please help!|
|Weapon||Mages Wand||>71||please help|
|Weapon||Legend Wand||>23||please help|
|Weapon||Doom Axe||>88||please help!|
|Weapon||Fairy Shield||-1||430||125||L||>102||3% nullify, 21% SP recover|
|Weapon||Wairo Shield||68||9377||2698||H||1640||8% nullify, +2 level speed|
Please add the results of your investigations to the table above! Some interesting things to add:
- Max out Legend Knife and Kairo Blade to see if we can Slash and be better than Prin's Spear.
- Max out Fairy Shield and see if it can do a better job of absorbing SP in rows 2-5. It was 8% SP recovery at level 20 and now 21% recovery at level 101.
- Max out Mages Wand for knowledge book mining - we need the best L weapon with the largest int available to shop keepers.
- Max out doom axe, combine with axe damage ability and a fairy shield and see if it's better than prin's spears. Unfortunately, that ability doesn't seem to have ability spheres and building up a new person from scratch just to try this is unreasonable.
Let's keep the next table as small as possible.
Recommended Nightmare mode equipment
|Weapon||Wairo Shield||68||9377||2698||H||1640||8% nullify, +2 level speed|
|Armor||Thin Armor||2916||296||4194||L||900||Good for int boost to help improve knowledge.|
|n/a||Full set of jobs||5537||158||1717||767||64||57||n/a||n/a|
For example, Legend Helm used to be the best, but it's maxed level under nightmare is 660. Speed is a problem, and we can see Falcon helm gives speed, and it goes all the way up to level 1080. The speed and intelligence boosts are required for back row spell casters, and good all the way around when learning knowledge. Another way of looking at it is "how many levels/full sets of jobs do I need to upgrade to accomplish the same thing?". Falcon Helm has ~3700 less defense, which can be made up in ~5 level upgrades with your characters. BUT Falcon Helm has ~3750 more speed, which would take ~58 level upgrades to do the same if you went with Legend Helm (just about impossible). By this measure, Falcon Helm and a few level upgrades are also the clear winners.
Prin's spear at max level 750 and Legend mail at 720 suggest to me that something else may prove much better in the long run. I tried a few other armors but didn't see anything much better. Pajamas is a close 2nd, but more interesting is thin armor. While it doesn't protect much, it has a huge int boost that is awesome for learning knowledge.
Another issue you'll see is that I've listed 3 weapons (Prin's spread, Monkey Gun, and Wairo Shield) to be upgraded to a total of 3640 levels. From what I've found so far, all the other types have a single best thing, this makes the weapon upgrades take all the time. I'd suggest leaving Wairo shield for last. It seemed to take forever to upgrade, and I was really disappointed that the 8% nullify or +2 speed level improvement didn't go up after all that work. (they both went up in normal mode once maxed out)
This approach of upgrading equipment mostly works until you get to Pirate Seas. At that point, you'll see the classic signs that you're overwhelmed. The monsters hit first, hit hard, and do too much damage before your healers can help out.
Phase 2.5: Thoughts on Grinding Level Upgrades and Achievements Edit
If you choose to keep going after the first 2 countries, focus first on online battles to get the best equipment for everyone, grind medals to max up the upgrades on that equipment and grind a few quests as noted below to level up your front lines.
Grinding is mindless work, the only way I made this work for me is to make it easy. I found quests that I didn't have to pay attention to (without failing) and did most of the grinding while leaving my tablet alone or to the side of my desk while working. Make it as easy as possible, the only annoying times are powering up characters with food, as that requires a lot of attention and needless clicking to go past menus and dialogs you've already seen 100,000 times.
I found the gold pass to be a mixed blessing. While I needed it to get started, I only wanted to pay for a month. That meant I felt I had to grind 24x7 for the full month to get the full benefit. When it ended, my pace of leveling up slowed down maybe 30%, but I felt free to put the game down for a week here and there to read books and play other games. Without that sort of freedom, I doubt I would have completed the game. The funny thing is that grinding this much certainly deserves another month of $5 gold pass to speed stuff up. If you can afford it and also not worry about putting the game aside for a week or two, you'll do better than I did. :)
Personal Achievements Edit
There is *NO* achievement system in this game unless you count relics. However, there are various optional parts of the game that are interesting to figure out and master. I came up with my own achievement ideas, and playing with these areas as a break from the main grind kept me sane and interested. Feel free to add your own ideas to this list too!
- Hoarder: For ~1000 coins, you can max out your inventory to 990 items/each. This is worth doing over time, so you can grind in a dungeon until your food is maxed out, then go back to base to learn knowledge. Take it up a level and use Sally Prin's to max out at 990 on all potions and Egg color items. Take it up another level by filling ~10 spots on your ship with temporary peeps that grind knowledge and max out your knowledge books. During my grinds, I realized what food could go into Sally's and used that up first before my peeps ate. Finally, you can max out 2nd level items, such as ultimate books and egg color up (all). On the monster farm, max out stock at 240 and save all your eggs to free up room in your holds. All of this excess inventory makes other investigations much easier!
- Inventor: As you upgrade the best weapons, take a break, use some cash, and try using the blacksmith to upgrade the intro/easiest items in each category. When it maxes out, use that to upgrade the next item in line. You can also use these basic items to level up your best inventory to level 80 or so, saving some special upgrade items. Easy mode is simple, in that the item lists in each category seem to be linear. Going to the next item lower in each list meant you could max it out to a higher level and get a better benefit. The item at the bottom of the list are the best. In Nightmare, the max levels are *not* linear, and it's quite possible for a previously inferior item to max up to a higher level and work better. As you find new max levels, add them to the list on the above section! Trying this for all equipment is simply impossible, and using the blacksmith is painful due to the huge number of clicks in the UI for a level upgrade at higher levels. Nonetheless, this is an interesting diversion ... to a point. :)
- Gambler: When the dice game is discounted, play it with 2 Bookie on your ship that also reduce game costs. Play it up to the max level of 9 as quickly as you can and stay there. At the beginning of each level, look at the board and note all ability spheres and kairo point +/- areas and anything else you want. Use the peek-a-boo early on in a level to see what chests hold and update your strategy. Buy dice to get all the + points and spheres. Once you make it up to level 9, you'll get 300-500 kairo points for each + location. Build up your Kairo points. Past 10,000 there are no relics, I built it up to 75,000 just to see. Use the kairo points on discount days at the kairo center to buy large holds and labs. With 7 labs, 9 large holds, and all the smaller holds, I can typically capture all loot after a quest. Perhaps 20% of the quests involve me throwing away some loot. You'll probably use close to 1000 coins to max out the dice game and get a bunch of kairo points, but the improvements to your ship make the grinding much more efficient. I didn't play with this until late in the game, but if you do it early on, you can fill open holes in your fighting team with friends.
- Note on costs - for one complete run of 7 dice games on a discount day, I netted 4239 kairo points at a cost of 88 medals. This works out to be 50 kairo pts/medal. If it was on a regular day, it would be 35 kairo points/medal. This run had a dry stretch in it, my gut feeling is that I get a little over 5000 kairo points on average per run. Your mileage may vary!
- Breeder: Once you have tons of eggs saved away, fill up your monster guidebook. If you've hoarded egg color items, it's fairly easy to just play with eggs and hatch over 80% of the monsters just by feel. For the last 10 or so monsters, I used this guide to get to the rough ranges required and hatch them. See phase 3b below or #Tips_to_get_certain_powerful_monsters for more tips on breeding monsters. For an added challenge, wait until fortune is on sale, and spend ~2000 coins on getting monsters & eggs. Every 300-500 coins you'll see a rainbow egg. Get it! It will hatch into a special monster or a rank 4 normal monster. Likewise, play with some hunting campaigns to get special monsters. Fortune special monsters come as L50. If they are rank1, then they missed the level 25 and level 50 upgrades and can't be upgraded. I haven't gotten them from campaigns yet, but it sounds like if you do it that way if you get a rank1 monster it will also be L1 and can be upgraded. Taking this to the next level means not only filling up the monster guidebook but acquiring all the special monsters as well. It's also worth upgrading the top 7 regular monsters to X level. Some people fill their front lines with monsters. I didn't take this approach, but now that the game is done, I may grind for more food and see what these monsters can do!
- Note on rare monsters and quests - some of these are ridiculously hard. We just had Megapooch available, I'd have to kill 2000 of them over 3 days. In 4 hours of questing areas where people have seen it, I killed 0 Megapooches. Even if I had averaged 1 an hour, this would be impossible for 2000 of them, even if others were playing it to help!
- Hunting vs. hatching. If you don't want to waste your time hunnting, or if you don't have many active friends, you should go with the hatching route instead of hunting. From my experience, monster stars doesn't add any value (I tried leveling up 50 levels the same monster twice, once with 2 stars, once with 5 stars, the 5 stars even have lower stats)
- Can anyone comment on the effectiveness of special monsters (can't be hatched from eggs) vs. LX monsters? Which have better stats? Is it even worth trying to get special monsters on quests and upgrading them to level 2?
- Millionaire: Sell all your excess equipment on weekends, use territorial to capture people and sell them, fight online to get cash for bounties. I built my $$ past 200M gold. It's good to keep ~20M gold around in case you need it for something, otherwise, you can apply it towards your canons. Buying and fully upgrading the waterfall canons can probably cost >500M gold. I never did finish maxing them out. Unfortunately, I saw little/no benefit from improving my canons. It takes a lot of time to get the $$ with little to show for it. But ... there's not much else to use your $$ on, except for upgrading equipments.
- Equipment master: Upgrade all your equipments to max level using money or upgrade items. For optimization, buy the equipments max 990 on shop sale days (e.g. lv 1 equipments), then upgrade 9 at a time on blacksmith sale days (remember, buying high level equipments on shops are more expensive than when you buy them before leveling them up), if you have extra from the 990 equipments (less than 110x upgrade), use it to upgrade the next equipments (remember to buy the next equipments max 990 also). Also upgrade from the simplest equipments to max level, then working slowly to the most advance equipments.
- Cheery: You can buy the ability to use the cheer mode in quests, and Sally's allows you to boost the cheers. Like the canons, I saw very little use in this. Some of the cheer upgrades are hideously expensive. But, if you max out your starting cheer level, lower the cheer cost for frequency and defense up to 2 CP and improve the effects and limits, it might be useful. This is one area that can wait until you finish the game on nightmare mode and have lots of excess inventory. I found it much better to have the cheer off for quests, as I could use an unlimited number of items AND allow my crew to research all the loot from the last quest.
- Self Sufficient: I leave my tablet alone, playing the game, for about an hour while my peeps gain knowledge. Once activity is down, you'll no longer get food from the island. Occasionally, life will intrude, and I might not make it back to my tablet until several more hours have gone by. If any of my ship structures consume gold instead of food, then I can be down several $M in gold. Ouch! Optimization #1: get the most rewarding ship structures that cost no money, some have no cost at all! Now if you forget to come back after idling your tablet, there is no cost. Optimization #2: one of the abilities is to get gold when using ship structures (Original job: Tycoon). Combine it with the skill to have no cost to use a ship structure (Thief Skill: Economical), max out the Ninja job for speed (Hermes), and you might be able to make $$ (Original job: Tycoon that mastered Thief Skill: Economical, and current job is maxed Ninja). Ideally you can now add a few ship structures that cost gold and make food (Cow stalls). If you balance them out, you should be able to idle your ship anywhere, not lose any gold even when activity is down, and continue to generate food and acquire knowledge. This would be awesome for leveling up your peeps, as you could let it run overnight and let everyone max out at 20 knowledge in all categories. EXCEPT I can't seem to get this to balance right, my gold making peeps just are not generating enough gold or something else is not working. If you find the right formula here, post what you did!
Remember, these "achievements" are just areas of the game I made up - areas that are fun to explore as breaks between grinding runs.
- Tips to get extra money on dungeon runs: have lots of onboard store, with price increasing ship structures nearby (up to max +50G). Use team consisting of Fisher, Thief, Noble. Get as many labs, holds and large holds as possible. Equip skill such as Territorial (from Wizard), Thrifty 2 (from Dealer), Economical. Build as many brigs as possible. Upgrade max item to 990. Item loot > holds > research + 2 w/ onboard shop restock > items up to 990 > sell for hundreds thousands G each run. Exchange prisoners for another couple ten thousands G. Meanwhile, your onboard shops will generate G, and the islanders that shopped there would generate egg color or equipment upgrade items. You don't need to go to high level dungeon. I've grinded in D+ dungeon and got 60 loots each time, as long as I keep my Fishers got the last kill each time (make sure only Fisher can attack).
Phase 3: Improve Your Front Line "Tank" CharactersEdit
At this point, I found I had to upgrade my Front Line characters. If level 1 means that you've successfully completed all jobs, the level 10 means you've done all jobs for a character a full 10 times, level 20 means 20 times, etc. Once I had my entire front row upgraded to level 10, I started making progress, but still could not complete the more difficult dungeons until I leveled them up some more.
If you are using monsters for your front line, skip to phase 3b below.
Here's a routine that worked well for me:
- First, do some prep. On the crew list screen go to your front line crew and mark them as "Ship Duties" only. Make sure you have a crew of 6 or so people dedicated to Research, all with the Seer "+2 items research" ability, related skills, and maxed out as Ninja on their final jobs for speed. Make sure all other crew members do not have Research selected to keep this elite crew processing loot quickly. Make sure you have few or no ship structures that use cash in case you leave your system idle for too long. It's also helpful to have a small group of people that try to max out the ship structures.
- Find a dungeon that gives lots of food, make sure some of your team have the original job Fisher ability (Get more research items from battle). Aim to max out your holds after each run. Don't battle with cheer on, that way your research team can empty out the hold completely while you do the 2nd run in the dungeon. Do about 3-6 dungeon runs.
- Go back to your Base. Change your front row crew to have only the Hermes skill so they move fast! Let the system idle there for about an hour. When "activity is down", go back to the island with your preferred dungeon. Make sure your ship has red carpets everywhere for maximum speed!
- The other key stat for gaining knowledge is intelligence. If your grinds are going well, downgrade equipment to items that max int.
- While your ship is in transit, open up the combat teams menu and job change for each front line person. Max out as many jobs as you can, and finish up in a job that allows heavy equipment. This can take 30 minutes, so it's important to do in transit or activity will be lost on your base or your dungeon island. You may need to change the skills away from Hermes and back to "Spear Master, Defender, Hearty" and equip shields if the dungeon is too hard without them in place.
- Do this base to dungeon routine ~4 times in a day. While it will take all day long, your system will be idle for much of it. After a solid day, you will likely upgrade all your front row characters a level (a full set of jobs).
- Keep in mind it may take you 4 weeks of this routine to make your front row strong enough to proceed through Pirate Seas. It's likely to take another month past that to finish the game.
- I recommend trying to upgrade 2-4 levels at a time before trying hard quests again as it gets discouraging to try it after each level upgrade. If it takes more than a couple potions to finish a hard quest, then your peeps are too weak. Don't force it!
TIP: Once you've mastered every job and it removes mastery, go back and power up your character again (1 at a time, team power up doesn't work with this) with a single piece of the cheapest food you have. You'll instantly master that job again. This helps multiple levels of upgrades when you consider you don't need to re-master a big job like Fiend again with its huge food requirements.
TIP: When leveling up, I stopped using the power up menu for the most part, as it often defaults to the max value of a food item. Combine this with days of repetition and every now and then I'd have an accident. Hmm, 990 Filet Mignons used by mistake. Crud! Instead, I use the combat teams job change command and then drop down to items from there since that default is always 1.
TIP 2: Online battles are good for getting super rare equipment like Prin's spears and Wairo shields. I used to get annoyed on the huge medal cost of acquiring people just to get their equipment. BUT if you can keep ~900 medals in reserve, occasionally you will be able to get someone at a cost of >550 medals. Go for it! This results in a ~133k HP person, or closer to 160k HP with hearty available. I found a few of these on rank 10 online battles. I'd love to find someone that costs closer to 1000 medals. To make this reasonable, gold pass is required & the medal method for getting >450 medals a day. Also, your team needs to be good enough to beat the other team! So if your front row is good and the other person only has 1 or 2 of these high-level people, it can happen and is a very quick and efficient way to upgrade your row 2+ people.
OPTION: While I tended to level up my characters 1 at a time, you'll see the "Team Power Up" option where you can do a whole combat team at once or all combat teams. I used this once to upgrade my entire combat team crew 1 level. I estimate it took ~4x longer than doing just 1 person. You still have to manually change each person's job, and it works best if every person is on the same job at the same time, and they can all advance at once with similar knowledge. It also helped to have the first person be farther along in this job or the next job. That way I could find the max level for them without wasting food for anyone else.
If you ever want to stop playing the game, this is a good place to do it! It takes a tremendous amount of grind and repetition to upgrade 4 characters * 48 jobs * 10 levels = ~2000 job upgrades. Kario really needs to add a button that says "use my food and upgrade jobs as much as possible", perhaps available after you've done a full level upgrade. I think the game should focus on the fun parts and make the micromanagement easy ...
It took me another 6 job level upgrades for my front line to get to Kairo island and front-line HP of about 100,000. I found the week to level up was hard on my wrists and no fun, and the quests on Pirate seas that took an hour each were not much fun either. So I took a break for a while.
Phase 3b: Alternative - Improve Front-Line Tank Monsters Edit
If you've chosen to use monsters as your front line tank characters, this section discusses some pros/cons/tips.
The benefits of using monsters:
- Upgrading is SO much easier! Simply grind for food and feed them all your food. Done. This is a huge benefit, but it does come at a cost!
- Hey, it's another part of the game to explore and understand. It's worth doing for fun after you complete even if you don't use them in the main game.
- BUT ... if you max out a monster only to find a better one later, you have to start all over again, whereas a person can just be reconfigured.
- BUT ... the best monsters use abilities that use SP. For people, you can give them equipment with high int (for high SP) and the ability to reclaim SP as they fight. You can't do this with monsters. So it is very likely you'll need to keep tossing SP potions at your monsters while they fight. This will require more of your time and attention.
- BUT ... since monsters can't have abilities or new skills, you can't give them ones that increase capture rate (to max out $$ by turning them in) and you can't increase the number of items found, so you'll have to farm more often.
The benefits of using people:
- People are infinitely more flexible. You can change their equipment, skills, and abilities. You can try many different strategies and pick what works best for you.
- Monster start to ramp up quickly, then slow down (requiring more and more food at each level) and eventually max out. People are slow and steady with no maximums that I've found. So while monsters may initially appear to be a quick and easy path, once you realize how high of a level they need and how hard upgrades become, they become painful.
- People can have shields and block! That's why I was able to win with ~190K HP in my front row, ~100K HP in the 2nd row, and ~38K HP in rows 3-5. Most monster hits don't go deep or to everyone, and having shields on everyone often blocks attacks from going to deeper levels.
- At ~150-180K HP, people hit the crossover point with LX monsters and perform better and they can keep on going while monsters are maxed out.
- Each full set of 49 jobs you upgrade to a person (I consider it a level) always costs the same. So while people may improve at a slower pace, it is consistent, while monsters get harder and harder to upgrade and have a cap.
- Sometimes you can spend >500 medals to get someone with a high level after winning an online battle. You can't get monsters through online battles.
And a couple other points:
- Recruiting people after starting a new replay costs medals. The cost is not so bad if you have a gold pass, and the people are immediately available from the tavern when you start.
- Monsters are kept in the monster farm after a replay and don't cost medals to retain, but you have to have a high rank to use high-level monsters, so you might have to make do with people for a while.
- You don't have to have your front row as all monsters or all people, you can mix and match!
This walkthrough was written for using just people, and at the end, I went back to try and figure out the monster strategy. Please fill in any key points I've missed!
OK, so if you chose to go the monster route or play with it, here are some tips on how to get started!
- A lot of work goes into feeding and leveling up your monsters, so pick the best ones early on or you will have to redo a lot of the work!
- Expand your monster farm as much as you can, and work on filling out your monster guidebook so you can tell what you'll need for upgrades!
- Review the monster page and pick the best normal monster(s) to focus on. If you get special monsters as you go, then you can swap out as needed.
- I look for what monsters are the hardest for me to defeat!
- Pick rank X monsters for nightmare, and don't bother to level them up more than you have to before you get to rank X.
- I picked 4 Baelzebub X monsters as my goal. Baelzebub2 has SASASS and Ultimate3.
- On the way, I got 2 Kairodrillers up to X. Kairodriller2 has SSSSAA and Ultimate 3.
- On the way, I got 1 Kairoman up to X. Karioman2 has SSSSSS and Ultimate 3. (best!)
- But ... don't get too hung up on special monsters, as you'll see below, they are very close at the end.
- Get your preferred monster as version2 level50, then use the upgrade option to see what you need for the upgrade.
- Upgrades need 3-5 Level50 monsters of both type2 and type1.
- Don't put a lot of work into capturing the upgrade needs, as they change every time you do it.
- If an upgrade spot doesn't have any info, it means you need to fill in the monster guidebook entry for it. The number is the monster number, you can use it with the monsters page to learn more.
- If you build up your monsters from eggs:
- Note the monster type can change as you upgrade to L25 and L50 and there is always a chance for blobbins.
- Build up lots of egg change color items. Getting your primary monster upgraded to version2 L50 and all the required monsters will take a lot of time and patience!
- You can also do much of this from the monster farm using the lottery function:
- Try to do this on the 3rd of the month. Build up a lot of medals in advance. 10 medals each go very fast, 7 medals on the special day go much further.
- I used this approach, and about 2500 medals to fill out my monster guidebook. I got all normal monsters and about half the special monsters with a bunch of duplicate special monsters.
- Once you have your primary monster at version 2 level 50, look at the upgrade requirements. Lookup each of those monsters using this site to see their size (such as large-neutral). Copy this info down and sort by version as well. Do this for your primary monster types and some secondary fun ones. Check off requirements as you find them.
- Now when you're presented with eggs, you should have a list of what egg types and monsters are the most important.
- The benefit of this approach is that you can do most of it in a solid day of gameplay AND you can get special monsters too!
For comparison, here are some monster stats at similar levels:
- Level 01:
- NOTE: measurements were done at the monster farm. some variation exists for same monsters.
- KairomanX L01: HP 3852; SP 199; Atk 1033; Def 973; Spd 338; Int 210
- DrillerX L01: HP 3899, SP 197, Atk 1111, Def 978, Spd 243, Int 137
- KairobotX L01: HP 4068; SP 174; Atk 831; Def 1033; Spd 290; Int 232
- BaelzebubX L01: HP 3756, SP 191, Atk 986, Def 938, Spd 305, Int 193
- FirajX L01: HP 3705, SP 223; Atk 1089; Def 943; Spd 240; Int 150
- SkeldrexX L01: HP 3792, SP 183, Atk 1012, Def 954, Spd 321, Int 200
- MegapoochX L01: HP 3876, SP 201, Atk 918, Def 1099, Spd 180 Int 181
- HydrodraX L01: HP 3869; SP 174; Atk 1107; Def 969; Spd 236; Int 135
- FroggleX L01: HP 3438; SP 183; Atk 815; Def 831; Spd 158; Int 247
- Level 50:
- NOTE: measurements done on ship, so they are slightly skewed with ship bonuses.
- NOTE: food bonuses apply, so results are slightly skewed +-100 or so by food.
- NOTE: DrillerXb is a 2nd drillerX I am leveling up, not a new monster.
- KairomanX L50: HP 25,795; SP 305; Atk 8417; Def 5110; Spd 968; Int 309
- DrillerX L51: HP 28170, SP 306, Atk 8681, Def 5359, Spd 882, Int 219
- DrillerXb L50: HP 33,361; SP 410; Atk 10,911; Def 6481; Spd 1050; Int 255
- KairobotX L50: HP 26,451; Atk 5481; Def 5366; Spd 1044; Int 359
- BaelzebubX L50: HP 25145, SP 253, Atk 7381, Def 4498, Spd 923, Int 270
- CollasquidoX L51: HP 21,235; SP 245; Atk 6494; Def 4229; Spd 731; Int 249
- SkeldrexX L50: HP 25273, SP 241, Atk 8092, Def 4789, Spd 1078, Int 278
- MegapoochX L50: HP 24739, SP 291, Atk 6507, Def 5461, Spd 463, Int 265
- Level 500:
- KairomanX L500: HP 144,462; SP 1037; Atk 47,977; Def 27,618; Spd 4992; Int 1162
- Note: monster may have had a special day that day, stats seem too high.
- DrillerX L500: HP 124,880; SP 767; Atk 38,887; Def 22,883; Spd 3689; Int 635
- DrillerXb L500: HP 119,995; SP 942; Atk 39,740; Def 22,505; Spd 3592; Int 622
- BaelzebubX L500: HP 113,006; SP 545, Atk 33,512; Def 19,581; Spd 3769, Int 820
- KairomanX L500: HP 144,462; SP 1037; Atk 47,977; Def 27,618; Spd 4992; Int 1162
- MAX level:
- KairomanX L500: HP 210,527; SP 1360; Atk 70,052; Spd 7293; Int 1702
- Driller X L1200/normal: HP 227,625; SP 1245; Atk 70,982; Def 41,407; Spd 6731; Int 1085
- Driller X L1200/mday: HP 284,531; SP 1556; Atk 88,727; Def 51,758; Spd 8413; Int 1356
- Baelzebub X L1200/normal: HP 257,215; SP 1043; Atk 76,361; Def 44,277; Spd 8597; Int 1781
- Here are some +100 level comparisons to help plot increases:
- DrillerX L500: HP 124,880; SP 767; Atk 38,887; Def 22,883; Spd 3689; Int 635
- DrillerX L600: HP 139,558; SP 836; Atk 43,472; Def 25,486; Spd 4124; Int 699
- HP +14,678; SP +69; Atk +4585; Def +2603; Spd +432; Int +64
- DrillerX L700 HP 144,549??; SP 904; Atk 48,057; Def 28,140; Spd 4558; Int 763
- HP +4991; SP +68; Atk +4585; Def +2654; Spd +434; Int +64
- DrillerX L800/fri: HP 211,142; SP 1215; Atk 65,802; Def 38,491; Spd 6241; Int 1035
- HP +66,593; SP +311; Atk +17,745; Def +10,351; Spd +1683; Int +272
- DrillerX L900/fri: HP 229,490; SP 1300; Atk 71,533; Def 41,808; Spd 6783; Int 1115
- HP +18,348; SP +85; Atk +5,731; Def +3,317; Spd +542; Int +80
- Driller X L1000/fri: HP 247,836; SP 1385; Atk 77,265; Def 45,125; Spd 7327; Int 1195
- HP +18,346; SP +85; Atk +5,732; Def +3,317; Spd +544; Int +80
- Driller X L1100/fri: HP 266,183; SP 1470; Atk 82,996; Def 48,441; Spd 7870; Int 1275
- Driller X L1100/sat: HP 212,947; SP 1176; Atk 66,397; Def 38,753; Spd 6296; Int 1020
- Driller X L1200/sat: HP 227,625; SP 1245; Atk 70,982; Def 41,407; Spd 6731; Int 1085
- L1200 is max! 100 more kairo cakes did absolutely nothing.
- Comparison to my front row people during the end game:
- Front Row L?: HP: 190,000, SP 5,400; Atk 84,000; Def 54,000; Spd 8,700; Int 13,000
- For Ultimate Attack 3 (SP60), I used about 6000 SP going through the last quest.
A couple things become apparent from this data:
- What the heck? The +100 level comparisons seem to start out consistently and then take a huge jump and the fall back quite a bit. Monster Days! Each monster has an affinity, such as lightning, dark, or fire, and on some days (maybe once a week), all monsters with that affinity have improved stats! If you have monsters and difficulty on the endgame, monitor your max HP for these days. If you are stuck/overwhelmed, these special days may give you the boost you need to make progress. (although as the quests keep getting harder, you'll need to improve eventually anyway)
- Special monsters don't appear to be better or worse than other high-end monsters. They are all close. However, they may have different maximums, so it could matter if you upgrade them all the way. Like equipment, this is a difficult puzzle - it's clearly impossible for 1 person to upgrade all monsters/equipment to see, but if we each try a few and document our results here, we'll have a better idea!
- A lot of the game mechanics are hidden, so it's useful to resort to statistics to evaluate different options. While my L1200 Baelzebub looks better than my L1200 Kairo Driller, when I put them both in the front row and run through the end game ~20 times, I found maybe 1 time where the Driller was killed off, and ~8-10 times where I lost Baelzebub. But ... Baelzebub is a large (L) monster, perhaps they attract more hits? It's possible that if I 4 of them in the front row, none of them would get picked on and it would work out better.
- There is a lot of randomness and variation between 2 different instances of the same monster, as highlighted by my DrillerX and DrillerXb above. You may want to create a bunch of rank-X monsters, upgrade to L50, and then concentrate on the best ones. However, if you take them to the max, the system implies there is a cap, so it may not matter at the very end.
Final question for Monsters - is there a difference between a person with the same HP and stats and abilities and the equivalent monster? I haven't been able to tell.
For myself, I completed the game, built up 3+ monsters to L1200 and tried them in the front row. Bleh. They run out of SP very quickly, and I don't want to monitor 45 minute long quests. So... I moved them to row 3. Rows 1 & 2 for me are people with better stats and tons of SP. The final endgame quest now completes for me without any losses, even when I fight 4 Baelzebubs at the same time.
Phase 4: Complete the Game on Nightmare ModeEdit
Getting through the survey to uncover Kairo Island was an almost impossible task as I pushed it before I was ready. I used ~200 recovery elixirs and ~80 aura tonics to survive. Clearly, I was way overmatched.
The first ~9 quests on Kairo Island were fun and doable and then it started getting tough again. At that point, I estimated needing at least a couple weeks of level up grinding to be competitive again. (and the reality was more like 3-4 weeks) Unfortunately, that process is not fun (come on Kairosoft, please give us an easy command to do full level ups! or at least allow us to turn off the annoying ~200 popups and animations at each step that we've already seen a million times and hold no value)
I took another break, and let my gold pass lapse then grinded up a bunch of levels and finished the game!
Ok, a couple weeks away from the grind was good for me. :) I started up again and played a couple more weeks and have completed the boss battle, quest 14/14 on kairo island. When I paused, it was taking me ~100 recovery elixirs to complete a quest. After 4 full level upgrades for my front row, it took ~10 recovery elixers. After another 2 level upgrades, it was close to even. BUT that let me progress ~5 quests up to the #14 boss quest. That one was hard, and even with my 6 upgraded levels, I went through ~200 elixirs again and all 5 retries at 3 medals each. It was close, but now I've conquered Kairo Island. (with more quests to do)
A few additional tips:
TIP: Upgrading your entire set of combat teams (30 peeps) 1 level (all 48 jobs, then a bit more so they can use heavy weapons) is really painful - it takes a tremendous amount of food! I estimate this took me about a month with some breaks in between. I switched approaches. I put my front row combat people in the first combat team and used the battle options/change formation ability to keep them in the front row. This let me do the "Team Power Up" on just my front row people. I developed a rhythm where it would take me a little more than a day to upgrade my front row peeps 1 level (all 48 jobs). In a week and a half, I was able to upgrade them ~6 levels. That made a huge difference!
TIP: My full boat had ~12 people that didn't really have any assigned tasks. So I now use those spots to grind for knowledge. I go to the tavern and hire a full set of 12 traders at 2 medals each. I change their ship duty to focus on just ship duties (acquiring knowledge) and equip them with suggested values so their int goes up to about 5000. Then as I am leveling up my front row, this set of 12 people eventually acquire 20 knowledge in each stat. I dismiss them (getting 5 knowledge books/ea person/ea stat) and re-hire. This gets me ~60 knowledge books every 2-3 days or close to 150 a week. While upgrading my front row peeps, I sometimes find 1 or 2 don't have enough knowledge or I'll push through 2-3 extra jobs. This knowledge grind gives me more than enough to do this without worry. It also means the upgrade front row grind (get food, get knowledge, change jobs, etc) has 1 or 2 fewer cycles in it as I can press forward more quickly. Another great side effect is that the huge number of traders is increasing my wealth, and I've generated >300 smith ticket (Wpn) x1. Nice!
TIP: I prefer grinding on Umadbro/Heavy Island for food. It has buildings, so while my combat teams are questing, my onboard crewmates are researching the loot and converting it to food and equipment. With time, I balanced this out so usually all the research was done by the time the quest finished. I also made sure several people had the "get more research items from battle" fisher ability to get lots of items. Along the way, I would sometimes get too much loot and have to toss it. The Kairo Center rates are terrible, it took over half my game and tons of sold Guardian Armors from Heavy Island to be able and buy one large hold. Others here shared advice to use the Dice Game. It works but at a cost of medals. I suggest you do most of your equipment upgrades first before playing the Dice game. Optimize it to play with a discounted cost of 3 medals on the cheap days. Buy cards to land on all the + kairo point spots. Rapidly advance across the full board to start the next level. Build up to level 9, and then you'll find the + kairo spots give 300-500 kairo points EACH. Awesome! I rushed the process and spent around 300 medals, but at the end, my dice game was at the final level 9, and I was able to buy 3 large holds and another lab. Finally, I don't have to worry about too much loot, and would like to increase it even more to make my food grinds more efficient!
Done! I complete nightmare mode on Kairo island. The last quest was tough, I had to grind for about a month and raise my front row people 8 levels and my 2nd-row people 4 levels. Even with this done, it was the medium difficulty, as I had to toss potions here and there to make it through ok.
Here are the stats of my front row people, to give you some indication of how many upgrades you might need:
- HP: 190,000
- Atk: 84,000
- Def 54,000
- SP: 5,400
- Spd: 8,700
- Int 13,000
- Skills: Spear Master, Defender, Hearty
- Equipment: Prin's Spear, Wairo Shield, Falcon helm, Legend Mail, Legend Ring. (all max)
While 1st-row people have ~190,000HP, the 2nd-row people have ~100,000 HP, and rows 3-5 only ~38,000.
- Congratulations! Go have a life!
- Play another game without so much grinding.
- Visit the achievements area above - play other optimization parts of the game you missed!
- If you haven't used monsters much, see the monster tutorial above. That could last you another two weeks. :)
For myself, I went the monster route, filled up my monster guidebook, and create a few front row monsters. I explored and filled out other parts of the game for you above (using the 2nd month of gold pass to ramp up my medal rate) and I'm just about to quit. If you see "Mister Rob" in the online battles, please say hi! :)
Ideally, Kairosoft will upgrade this game in the future to add more monsters, islands, and countries to keep people coming back. Seriously - why try and foist a subscription on us if you're not going to keep adding things? Past behavior from them is they just crank out new titles and I've not seen them go back and change stuff. So this feels unlikely to me.
Keep in mind that upgrades could be hard to manage! Consider equipment - if they add new items, then all the work you did on upgrades using medals may be for naught. If they add new monsters and you went the monster route, you may have to set those monsters aside (or move them back a level) and start over with the new ones. People should be safe to keep upgrading and/or get new jobs. For these reasons, it's likely they'll just raise caps if they change anything and not add tons of new stuff. Boring...