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Tetra Master
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Game Basics 

In many ways, this is a readily recognizable Final Fantasy game.  It has a world map with random encounters, as you would probably expect, and you get an airship later in the game, as with any good Final Fantasy adventure.  This game, however, is notable for the charm of its characters, as well as their great variety, both in race and in personality.  Getting to know them can be as much of an adventure as the main conflict around which the story is based.

Characters learn abilities through equipment.  Any given weapon or piece of armor might be able to teach a character certain abilities, and when enough ability points have been acquired through battle to master the abilities, that item should be removed to make way for another piece of equipment with new abilities.  Armor and weapons can be bought, or can be made by combining weaker equipment with the aid of a synthesist.

The game can be saved with moogles, who appear frequently throughout the game.  They are also responsible for initiating one of the game's side quests, which are many and varied.  Some of them last for nearly the entire game, and completing them can provide great satisfaction.  And where would a Final Fantasy game be without a chocobo?  You will meet Choco early in the game, and he will be a reliable and helpful companion.

Here are a few things to remember as you start this four-disc-long adventure.

Do not sell your old equipment, as it will likely be used in synthesis later.
Save the game whenever you are given a chance, because you never know when a tough enemy is going to come along.
Save before challenging someone to a card game, so you won't have to cry if you lose your best cards.  I would also recommend saving every time you win a rare card.
Don't forget to weed through your Tetra Master cards periodically, as you can only carry 100.  If you already have 100, you will lose additional cards that come your way.
Keep a close eye on your abilities, and change your equipment as soon as all the abilities it can teach have been mastered.  It is a waste of AP to leave equipment with only mastered abilities on if you have something else which will teach new abilities.  If you have more than one piece of equipment which teaches a certain ability, you can equip them simultaneously to learn it that much faster.  Each one will contribute AP toward the learning of the skill after every battle.
The bosses in this game almost invariably carry great equipment, so steal every time you get in a boss battle.
Don't neglect to watch the ATE's, or Active Time Events.  They can enrich the story a great deal.
Keep plenty of restorative items in your inventory, because it is surprising how quickly they can disappear when you are traveling on the world map.
When cycling through menus, use the L1 and R1 buttons to move through them page by page.  It will save a lot of time.
Make use of the abilities which prevent status ailments and cause extra damage to certain classes of enemies.  They can make your way much easier.
Press the Select button while in the menu to get additional information about the item or ability that you are examining.
Search every field icon that you see, because they add to your treasure hunter ranking.
Complete as many of the side quests and mini-games as possible.  The rewards are often good ones.
Use Dagger's Scan ability to determine what weaknesses an enemy may have.  These are usually what you would expect, but it doesn't hurt to check.  In general, use fire magic on plant types, wind magic on flying monsters, and ice magic on fire-based enemies.
When using a cure spell from the menu, if you press the left arrow button, you can then use that spell on all party members.  This saves a lot of MP when healing after a battle.
Negative status conditions can persist after battle, so make sure to remove them with spells or items.