Bravely Default II is here at last on Nintendo Switch, and as our review explains, it’s another high-quality Square Enix RPG. It’s also another RPG that is not going to hold your hand and walk you merrily to the finish line. If you approach the combat lackadaisically — you’ll die. Or at the least, you’ll get frustrated at why you aren’t progressing through the game faster on its normal difficulty. So here are some Bravely Default II tips and tricks to make a challenging game much easier and beat it much faster without actually switching to its easy mode. In essence, we’re talking about how to break Bravely Default II.
1. Freelancer is an extremely useful job throughout the game.
Freelancer is the default job, and you may be tempted to switch to something more exotic as soon as possible. However, one of my big Bravely Default II tips is to stick with the Freelancer job and master it from the beginning with at least one character because it is incredibly useful in so many ways.
For instance, when you master this job, it unlocks a job bonus where every other job you master will increase the stats of the Freelancer job, making Freelancer potentially the most powerful job by far at the end of the game. Additionally, nearly every ability Freelancers gain is extremely useful, such as Divining Rod being essential for knowing if you’ve located every treasure chest, but I’ll focus on some particular highlights:
Treat is really useful for recovering HP and especially MP at the beginning of the game, when Ethers are not in constant supply. Likewise, grinding 4 BP of Forage in regular battles is a fast way to collect a variety of useful items in the early game, especially types of Ethers and items that give JP.
At level 8, Purge is an excellent way to remove status effects that the standard Basuna spell can’t, like berserk and doom. Likewise, Square One is extremely useful for removing any buffs from an enemy, like haste on bosses.
The three most useful Freelancer abilities of all, however, are JP Up, Jp Up and Up, and Body Slam. The two JP Up skills, true to their name, increase the rate at which you accumulate JP and level up your jobs. If you equip these to a character early in the game, that character will have mastered several more jobs by the end of the game than the other party members, making the Freelancer class amazingly powerful in turn. Body Slam, meanwhile, costs 1 BP, and it is essentially a highly powerful physical attack that ignores weapon type and is terrific to use against anything. The only risk, like with any physical attack, is that it might miss. But we have a solution to that too…
2. The Berserker job has fantastic abilities for standard and boss fights.
The Berserker job, obtained toward the end of Chapter 1, does not actually require you to be “berserk.” It offers some extremely useful abilities though.
First of all, Bloody-Minded at level 5 is an equippable ability that guarantees your physical attacks will always land, regardless of accuracy/evasion; however, it will also hurt you. If you’re doing a series of extremely powerful attacks, you might end your turn with 1 HP left. Most of the time, Bloody-Minded won’t be worth the hassle. However, there are a few bosses that have frustratingly high evasion, and it really sucks to spend a ton of MP or BP and not hit anything. You can always use buffs and debuffs to address these types of bosses, but I found it was a lot more straightforward to just equip Bloody-Minded and unload with my most powerful attacks, like Body Slam and the Vanguard’s Neo Cross Slash. I like to bet on a sure thing. Just make sure a healer is ready to patch up the Bloody-Minded user(s).
Another deeply useful ability is level 9’s Unshakeable Will, which prevents sleep, paralysis, dread, berserk, confusion, charm, and freezing. The huge benefits of that speak for themselves.
Lastly, level 11 gives you the ability Indiscriminate Rage, the most useful ability in Bravely Default II. It makes all of your physical attacks target every enemy at their normal level of power, with the only tradeoff being that your next turn comes much slower. Indiscriminate Rage is typically impractical for a boss fight, but for regular battles, it is crucial. If you equip a character with the strongest weapons and strength-enhancing accessories and begin a battle by using four physical attacks with Indiscriminate Rage, you will probably kill everything. It is a potential game-changer, but to get the most out of Indiscriminate Rage, you should take one more step…
3. Combine Berserker abilities and Counter-Savvy to blitz the whole game.
Enemies in Bravely Default II have a wide range of counter abilities that can be triggered by your characters’ actions. Everything from regular attacks to healing and defending might trigger a counter ability of some kind from enemies. The Ranger job, obtained in Chapter 2, receives an equippable ability called Counter-Savvy that guarantees physical counter abilities will never hit you. (Magic counters and other odd counters can still affect you though.)
Of standard enemies who have counters, many of them will counter physical attacks with their own physical attacks. That means someone who uses Indiscriminate Rage runs the risk of getting beaten to death before they get the chance to beat all the enemies to death. However, Counter-Savvy preempts physical retaliation completely. Likewise, if you also equip the aforementioned Unshakeable Will, it almost guarantees nothing will stop you from getting all your physical attacks off.
Thus, a formula of Indiscriminate Rage + Counter-Saavy + (maybe) Unshakeable Will + high strength-boosting gear for at least one party member guarantees you will be able to instantly annihilate all regular enemies in the first half of the game. Applying this formula to a second party member guarantees you will be able to annihilate all regular enemies almost anywhere in the game. This strategy will save you hours of time and allow you to grind much, much faster for boss fights. With higher levels and more JP to master jobs, all boss fights will be inherently significantly easier as well. This is the most valuable Bravely Default II tip I can possibly give you, and it’s an easy way for any player to break the game.
4. Build your party evenly and find the sub-jobs you most enjoy using.
Aside from the final battles, in the entire time I played Bravely Default II, I only changed my characters’ jobs to accommodate a specific boss battle once — and even then, I only changed one character’s job. This illustrates that there is not one “right” way to win a boss fight, and as long as you make an earnest effort to build a balanced party, you should probably be good to go.
However, as a matter of personal preference, my characters kept the same sub-jobs for most of the game because I found there were some skills I always wanted to use. Seth always had Vanguard skills in boss fights, to use Neo Cross Slash for big damage or The Gift of Courage to grant BP to an ally. (Incidentally, Vanguard is another fantastic main job to return to for the endgame, because mastering it can send your strength stat sky-high.) Gloria always had white magic on backup because healing is critical. Elvis had black magic, but when I realized how oddly ineffective black magic is for a lot of the game, I switched him to red magic to give him a better mix of options. And Adelle always had Freelancer skills ready to go, to use all the abilities described earlier.
I’m not saying you should build your party the same way, of course. I’m just saying you should find the jobs that you find most reliable and keep them around as sub-jobs, so that you have “safe” strategies to fall back on while you experiment with new ones.
We hope you’ve found these Bravely Default II tips useful! After its challenging demos, a perception of horrible difficulty seemed to surround Bravely Default II, but these tips should help you break the game before long.