Bargains at the Bazaar II
With that, you're done with your current business in the Giza Plains, and are free to return to Old Dalan to further your scheme. Before you do that, though, you should tend to a bit more optional business while you still have Penelo around, namely hunting another Mark. First, however, visit any merchant (Arjie at the Nomad Village works fine) and sell the loot you harvested from monsters in the Giza Plains. Namely, try to sell off several units of each of the following: Drab Wool, Fire Stone, Large Feather, Molting, Snake Skin, Tanned Hide, and Water Stone. If you haven't obtained enough of these components to sell, consider doing so now.
Selling these several of each of these components should unlock three new bazaar bundles, and contribute to several more. Remember, if you want to make sure you're not over-selling your loot, sell only what you need to unlock the following items, buy them, then sell more of that loot to add it back to the bazaar inventory.
|Loot Sold||Bazaar Bundle||Cost|
|Drab Wool (x2)||Antidote Set (Antidote x3)||100 gil|
|Fire Stone (x3), Molting (x3)||Gilt Shield (Buckler)||250 gil|
|Large Feather (x3)||First-Aid Kit (Phoenix Down x2; Potion x2)||450 gil|
Tip: For now, content yourself with selling at most four units of Snake Skin, if indeed you sell any at all. It's required to unlock a high-quality loot item, which in turn can be used to unlock a powerful weapon. Needless to say, you don't want to sell off all your Snake Skin early, unless you want to find more later.
Wolf in the Waste
Return to the Sandaea in Rabanastre's East End district and talk to Tomaj, which finally wraps up the long-since completed Rogue Tomato hunt. For returning to the petitioner, you'll get a meager reward, after which he'll comment on your visit to the Clan Hall - presumably he'd have suggested you head there now if you didn't go there before, but you don't need Tomaj to boss you about! More importantly, however, check out the Notice Board here to find another hunt - the hunt "Wolf in the Waste", which tasks you with hunting down Thextera. You could have done this earlier, of course, but it'll be easier with Penelo by your side, hence why all this Sandsea business was postponed until now.
|For completing the hunt "Red & Rotten in the Desert"||300 gil, Potion (x2), Teleport Stone (x1)|
Read the notice then find the petitioner, Gatsly, who is sitting on the floor near the Notice Board. Hear his tale of woe - a typical "kill the monster to protect my business interests!" story, then accept his request to officially start the hunt. Seems like this Thextera is in the Westersand area known as the Galtea Downs. The Westersand is more dangerous than the Eastersand, but fear not, as you don't have to progress very far to find your Mark.
Leave the Sandsea and return to the Southern Plaza part of Rabanastre, then from the fountain in the middle of this area, head west to reach the West Gate area. Naturally, this leads to the Westersand, and has the same amenities of any of Rabanastre's other gates, including a Chocobo rental stall and a Save Crystal. Take advantage of the latter to save your game, then press on west to the Westersand.
The weather in this area can be much more extreme than in the Estersand, and any time you enter you run the risk of being caught in a sandstorm. Right now, such storms are quite common and will reduce visibility considerably. This is more of a nuisance than anything else, but the weather does also affect enemy spawns and elemental damage. If a sandstorm is active, tough monsters may spawn - like the Gnoma Entite and earth, fire and wind elemental damage is increased by 20%, while water elemental damage is reduced 50%. At this point in the game, and for this particular task, neither of these should matter all that much, as you're unlikely to stumble across a Gnoma Entite, nor are you likely highly reliant on water elemental damage. If you find the weather displeasing, however, simply leave the Westersand and return, as each time you change zones the weather might change.
Anyways, when you're content with the weather, it's time to proceed with the Thextera hunt. Finding the beast is easy in any weather, as it's invariably located in the southeastern corner of the map. From the area transition to Rabanastre, simply follow the wall west, then south, and as long as you run along this wall you should find your Mark. Be sure to kill any Wolves you find along the way, especially any near Thextera and note that these Wolves are somewhat stronger than the ones in the Estersand. Expect them to do about 16~ damage per hit and to have more HP. This increase in monster strength is more than offset by having Penelo around.
Thextera can usually be found in the company of lesser Wolves, but there's no mistaking Thextra for an ordinary hound. Given the Mark's size and coloration, it clearly stands out amidst its lesser brethren. It doesn't only differ in size, however, it's much stronger and has a wider, more dangerous array of attacks. In addition, it boasts 380 HP, nearly three times what normal Wolves in the Westersand have. Speaking of which, focus on Thextera's attendant Wolves before you target him, which will make taking down Thextra easier. Thextra can summon more Wolves with its "Cry for Help" ability, but that wastes precious time, and you can quickly dispatch any reinforcements.
Its normal attacks aren't too bad, landing around 25~ damage per hit. They can, however, inflict poison on characters, so be sure to have a stock of Antidotes handy. You can buy Antidotes from Migelo's, or, if you've been looting urns regularly in your travels you may have accumulated a stockpile. Don't try to weather the poison, as the damage can quickly become unmanageable, especially since you want to keep your HP safely above 100. The reason you want to closely chaperone your HP is due to Thextra's "Fangs" attack, which can deal over 100~ damage if it hits. Be on the lookout for it and have Potions ready to bring the injured character back into fighting form. Finally, when Thextera's HP are low it'll attempt to use the "Saber" ability - a desperation attack of sorts that doubles Thextera's attack power, but reduces its HP every time it attacks while the ability is active. Just keep up the pressure to finish Thextera off.
Status Effect - Poison: The Poison status effect deals a set amount of damage (6.25%) to a character at regular intervals, and is one of the few status effects with a finite duration. Enemies killed with damage inflicted by the Poison status do not affect your battle chain number, making it one of the rare ways to eliminate nuisance enemies without breaking a chain.
Once Thextera is vanquished, all you have to do is return to Gatsly in the Sandsea and report your success to gain a reward. You can also pick up a third hunt now, "Dalmasca's Desert Bloom", which tasks you with hunting down the Flowering Cactoid. This one is difficult, but doable right now, but it'll be put off until you have a bit more support. While the subject of hunts is still in mind, you might as well return to the Clan Hall and talk to Montblanc, who - provided you have earned enough Clan Points - should acknowledge that you attained the rank of Hedge Knight and reward you for the accomplishment. You can also check out the Clan Provisioner in the Muthru Bazaar, who should now stock the Oil magick (Green Magick 1).
|For completing the hunt "Wolf in the Waste"||500 gil, Headguard, Teleport Stone (x1)|
|For attaining the rank of Hedge Knight||Warp Mote (x2), Teleport Stone (x2)|
Now that you're done hunting, it's time to return to Old Dalan's at Lowtown. When you near the outside of Old Dalan's house, Penelo will try to guilt trip Vaan into behaving, after which Vaan promptly ignores her emotional appeal and continues the business at hand. Talk to Old Dalan and he'll charge your Sunstone, then gives you some rather specific advice about the heist.