SaGa Frontier/Equipment

< SaGa Frontier

This page will give you general information on equipment, but most importantly, it will give detailed descriptions of how defense really works in SaGa Frontier, as well as some recommended equipment setups. A very big thanks to winterking and Polygon for allowing me use of the information and explaining how it works, respectively.

Contents

Weapons

Weapons rule! More info to come.

Shields

How Shields Work

When a Shield is equipped, it gives the user a chance percentage for blocking certain attack types (for more on attack types, read "How Defense REALLY Works" below in the Armor section). These are usually 'weapon' attack types, but there are shields which block other attack types as well. Shields always make an attempt to block any attack that it possibly can.

However, there are certain types of skills in which, when used, will not allow your character to block attacks with their shield. These skills are:

- Any attack that uses JP
- Any sword skill that necessitates two swords (It's worth noting, though, that you can still block a shield when using two guns)
- Attacks that are described as using both hands (Thrust, ThunderThrust, TripleThrust
- "Throw" skills, like AirThrow, RollingCradle, BabelCrumble, Suplex, LocomotionG, and GiantSwing. Strangely enough, you CAN block while using DSC, perhaps because the first attack of the move is not a throw.

As long as a character can defend against any attack types involved in the attack used against them, they have a chance of blocking. For example, the attack "HeatSmash" likely uses the attack types Bashing and Fire. If an enemy uses HeatSmash on a character equipped with an ExcelShield, they can block the attack, because even though the shield can't block Fire attacks, it CAN block Bashing attacks.

For this reason, I can't stress how good shields are in this game. They have a very high success rate of blocking attacks, and even the worst shields have a chance to block just about any type of attack in the game that involves weaponry. There are even some shields that block 'magic' based attacks.

It is possible to equip multiple shields; however, only one Shield can take effect at a time, and it's always the highest shield on your equipped slots. In other words, if you have a WonderBangle in slot 2 and a GenbuShield in slot 3, your character will only attempt to block attacks with the WonderBangle. This was likely put in effect to make sure that no character could have a block rate that exceeded 100%.

On the flipside, shields in lower slots still grant immunity. In other words, if you have a WonderBangle in slot 2 and a GenbuShield in slot 3, the GenbuShield's ability to nullify water-based attacks will still take effect. So, to that end, if you have a shield with an attack resistance, it can be a good way to grant some extra defensive effects without using up an armor slot. Otherwise, there appears to be no benefits to using multiple shields.

Lastly, when defending in battle, any shield in use will have its block rate reduced by about 25%.

Rules for Equipping

Humans

Humans can equip a Shield in any of their four 'Hand Slots' (used for equipping weapons, shields, and items).

Mystics

Mystics can equip a Shield in any of their four 'Hand Slots' (used for equipping weapons, shields, and items).

Mecs

Mecs can equip a Shield in any of their eight equipment slots.

Monsters

Monsters can not equip shields; however, some monsters *MIGHT* have shields in their default equipment (unviewable during the game, and unchangeable).

Items

Items rule! More info to come.

Armors

There are seven types of armor in SaGa Frontier: Body Armors, Suits, Shirts, Helmets, Shoes, Gloves, and Accessories. The rules for equipping them vary between all the races.

Rules for Equipping

Humans

Humans can equip any type of armor they wish to equip; however, they can only equip one of each at a time. The only exception to this is accessories, of which multiple accessories can be equipped. Humans can not simultaneously wear suits with any body armors, helmets, shoes, or gloves; however, they can still equip shirts and accessories. Humans have four slots reserved for equipping armor.

Mystics

Mystics can equip any type of armor they wish to equip; however, they can only equip one of each at a time. The only exception to this is accessories, of which multiple accessories can be equipped. Mystics can not simultaneously wear suits with any body armors, helmets, shoes, or gloves; however, they can still equip shirts and accessories.

Mystics have four slots for equipping armor; however, unlike humans, mystics always have one of their three slots occupied by a 'Mystic Armor' which can not be unequipped. Exactly which piece of armor a mystic has will always be the same. Six out of eight mystics have MysticMail, a regular armor type, while one mystic has MysticWear - a shirt - and the last one has a MellowRing - an accessory. This, of course, has an effect on how you equip your Mystic, since you have to come up with a build based on what piece of Mystic Armor your mystic has; for example, most Mystics will not be able to use Suits, and they won't be able to equip any better pieces of body armor, so you'll have to work around that.

Monsters

Monsters can not equip any type of armor except for accessories. Monsters have four slots reserved for equipping accessories.

Mecs

Mecs can equip all types of armor, and have no restrictions on how many pieces of they same type they can equip. For example, you can give equip any amount of Suits on just one mec; or body armors, shirts, etc. Mecs have eight equipment slots, which can be used to equip any piece of inventory (items, weapons, shields, armor).

How defense REALLY works

In SaGa Frontier, you can look at a piece of armor and it will show a numerical value for 'defense.' This seems pretty straightforward, right? Just pick the one with the highest amount! Oh, but only if it were that simple. For some reason, the developers of SaGa Frontier thought it was a good idea to make several different types of defense, but only show you the numerical value for ONE of the EIGHT types of defense that exist. You see, the number shown is for 'Slashing' defense, but there are actually three different types of physical defenses, and five types of magic defenses! Here are all of them:

1. Slashing: This is the numerical value shown on each armor in the game. As the name implies, Slashing defense refers to defense against any attacks that would 'cut' you, like sword attacks (though there are more than just sword attacks).

2. Bashing: This type of defense deals with blunt attacks, such as martial arts (just an example!)

3. Piercing: This type of defense deals with attacks that stab or pierce, such as gun attacks (or thrust attacks! or maybe some other stuff!)

4. Fire: This is a magic defense that protects you from fire attacks, of course.

5. Cold: This magic defense protects you from ice and water attacks.

6. Electric: This magic defense protects you against any type of attack dealing with electricity. Go figure.

7. Force: This magic defense is a catch-all defense for any type of magic attack that doesn't fall under the Fire, Cold, and Electric defenses. As you can imagine, that's an awful lot of magic attacks; any light, shadow, or wind attacks will fall under Force defense, for example.

8. Status Effects: This defense makes you less susceptible to any status effects that could be induced by an attack.


Unfortunately, there isn't a lot of information as to what attacks carry which properties. For example, is the Arcane Magic 'Saber' counted as a Force magic, since it's a magic spell that doesn't have any of the tri-elemental properties? Or, is it a piercing attack, since the animation depicts the target being stabbed? Or, is it both? All of these are possibilities, since attacks are capable of carrying multiple attack properties.


However, this is the MOST important thing to know about defense: If you are hit (or if you hit an enemy) with an attack that has multiple properties, it will deal damage based on your/their lowest defense rating.


For example, lets say you attack an enemy/are attacks with the skill ThunderThrust, which is likely a Piercing/Electric attack (I have no conclusive proof of this; so, let's just assume I'm right for the sake of making my point). If the you/your enemy has 30 Electric Defense, and only 2 Piercing Defense, then the ThunderThrust attack will deal damage as if you/they have a defense rating of 2. However, if you/they have 30 Electric and 35 Piercing, it will deal damage as if the your/they have a defense rating of 30. It always defaults to the lowest Defense involved in the attack, see? The same holds true with combination attacks; whichever attack properties are involved in the combo attack, the damage will be dealt based on the lowest defense property involved in the attack.


Because of this, it's important to have as high of defense as possible in all eight defense categories. You can have absurdly high defense in everything but one of the eight properties, and still be incredibly susceptible to attacks.


HOWEVER!! If this is all way too much for you to care about, let me tell you a secret: You never really have to think so hard about it. To prove my point, I've known about these extra defensive properties for less than a year now, but I've beat the game so many times that I could play it with my eyes closed. If you just pick the armors with the highest defense value listed in the game (the Slashing Defense), chances are that you're picking an armor that is more than adequate for the job. So, unless you really WANT to worry about this kind of stuff, don't; you can beat the game and enjoy it just fine without this information - I sure have!

The 'best' equipment

For those of you who DO want to twink out, I won't leave you out in the cold. The defense values for every piece of armor in the game are known, so it's easy to tell you what's good and what's not for each different type of equipment. Here is, in my opinion, the best equipment. Keep in mind, though, that my bias is toward stuff that can be purchased, or can be very easily acquired otherwise.

Suits

There's only two suits worth considering as contenders for the best: PoweredSuit and SprigganSuit. Of the two, I'd say the best is easily PoweredSuit. All categories in which the SprigganSuit have higher defense are all negligible values. At such high defense values, a measly difference of 5 is not going to make a big deal; however, the whopping difference of 15 defense that the PoweredSuit has over the SprigganSuit in Fire and Cold defense is a pretty big deal. This, coupled with the fact that you can get a PoweredSuit in every scenario, makes it the clear winner.


Armor

Without a doubt, the best body armor is WarLordArmor. It has 32 defense in all categories across the board, with a 42 defense value in Piercing. There isn't much of a contest, here; PlutoArmor has 35 across the board, including Piercing, and I'd say a 3-point difference is negligible to a 7-point difference. Plus, WarLordArmor can be bought.


Shirts

I would call this a tie between Hyperwear and Defendwear. The difference between the two for physical defense is negligible (2-point difference), so the real decision depends on what kind of attacks you want to prepare for. Hyperwear defends better against Force and Status Effects, while Defendwear is better against Fire, Cold, and Electric. Personally, I use Hyperwear, because I'm a sucker for having the highest physical defenses possible, but also because physical and Force attacks are the most common types of attack in the game.


Helmets

Guh...The thing about helmets is that they mostly suck. Also, not a lot of helmets can be purchased. So, there's not actually a lot of choices to be made based on purchase alone.

If we're talking about helmets that you can buy, or come as default equipment on certain characters, then MirrorGlass is definitely the best. It has the highest physical defense of all helmets, and the best overall magic defense of all purchasable helmets (a whopping 4 points in all magic defenses). However, it is worth noting that the YolkHat has high Cold defense for a common helmet (10).

If we want to talk about helmets found in drops and chests, the MagiHat rules. Beyond allowing you to use an unlimited amount of MagicStones, and the highest defense for Fire, Cold, Electric, and Force out of all helmets. The difference in physical defense compared to the MirrorGlass is insignificant (2-point).


Gloves

A lot of gloves can't be bought, so there's also little choice to be made for gloves.

For Gloves that can be bought, there's not much to consider between ArmorGloves and CyberGloves. ArmorGloves are a bit better against Bashing and Piercing attacks (3-point difference), and CyberGloves are better against Fire, Cold, and Force (4-point difference). There is an inconsequential diffence in the remaining stats, so just pick the one that suits your needs better.

For Gloves found in drops and chests, HarmoniumBangle is light-years better than all other gloves. It has good enough physical defense, and really high magic defense except in Status Effects. The SH-Armlet has the most well-rounded defense, as well as the highest physical and Status Effect defense, but has a negative defense value for Electric.


Shoes

Like Helmets and Gloves, there's little room for customization.

For purchasable Shoes, you want to go with JetBoots. It's important to mention that FeatherBoots are a fair amount better than JetBoots against Force and Status Effects (5-point difference), but JetBoots also are also 5-points higher in Fire and Cold defenses. JetBoots are more well-rounded across the board, but they also guard against quake attacks and raise QUIckness. It's worth noting, though, that RubberShoes have 25 Defense against Electric - the highest of any Shoes.

For Shoes found in drops and chests, it depends on what you need. For Magic, DanceShoes are the clear winner. For physical defense, go with the IronClogs. the SH-Anklet has a negative defense penalty for Electric.


Accessories

This is what's truly fun in customization, because Accessories have such crazy magic defenses. A lot of the discussion here will be about chests/drops, because most accessories can't be bought.

For physical defense, this is a no-brainer. The WindShell is tied for the highest Slashing/Bashing defense at 5, but has the highest Piercing defense of all accessories at 15. Best of all, the WindShell is a drop that can be gotten in every scenario. As if that wasn't enough, the WindShell has the second highest Force and Status Effects defense of every accessory, as well as the third-highest defense in Electric. Thus, it's not only the best accessory for physical attacks, but it's probably the best accessory all-around. Still, it's worth noting that the FeatherCharm has 11 Piercing Defense.

For Magic defenses, it's not quite as cut and dry. There are some accessories that are particularly strong in some respects, but weak in most others. Also, there are ones that are just powerful across the board.

For specializing in a particular stat, these are easy:

- SolGrail has 100 Fire Defense.

- SleetCoin has 100 Cold Defense

- ThunderCharm has 100 Force Defense - this is a programming error. For this reason, the ThunderCharm is quite an invaluable accessory to have, since Force Magic encompasses so many attacks.

- BoltCrystal has 25 Electric, making it the best accessory for Electric Defense.

- KrisKnife has the highest Status Effect defense at 43.


Now, for the well-balanced accessories, the best accessory for the job is definitely the KrisKnife, with 13 across the board for magic defense and 43 for SFX. They also have 3 defense for all physical attacks, which isn't too shabby for an accessory. The problem is that it's hard to obtain more than one KrisKnife, so here are a few other good ones to look out for that you can get in every scenario:

- A VERY important accessory for Mystics is the SeaStone. It has 23 defense in all magic categories except Electric (3), as well as having 3 defense points for all physical defenses. It also has a ton of other benefits, such as raising your PSYchic and VITality points by 7, and defending you from water attacks. AND, if you equip it on a Mystic, they can use it to cast Maelstrom.

- The Magatama has 11 across the board for all magic defenses. It can also cast SacredSong in battle.

- HarmoniumEarrings have 11 across the board and 21 for Status Effects. They also defend against Sonic attacks.

Suggested setups