Beginner's Guide for Jade Cocoon 2
This page includes my New Players/Beginner's Guide for Jade Cocoon 2. I decided to make this guide because of how little information there was online about this game. When trying to learn about this game and understand how it works I spent hours googling for basic information like what each stat does, when is the best time to merge your beasts, what skills and magic attacks are the best and plenty more. All the information I learned during my research is found on this page.
In my opinion the best place to start with this guide is to teach you about merging and what each stat does for the beasts on your team. Understanding what each stat does will help you plan out your team better and assign the right attacks to the beasts on your team. Once you understand this basic information we'll move on to which attacks are the best and why.
For merging there are a few basic things you need to keep in mind... The first of which is that if you want to min/max your beast then you'll want to wait until level 20 to merge them - at least until your beast has been merged 4 times. Each time you merge your beast it increases the amount of EXP you need for each level so you want to maximize how many levels you get early on in the first few merges.
After you've merged your beast 4 times you should start merging him at level 15. The reason for this is because each merge starts you out at level 1 and it costs a lot less EXP to level up at 1 than it does 15. Now, as far as skills go, I recommend that with your first merge you change their primary skill to something you want. The second merge you do with the beast you'll want to choose a secondary skill that you want.
Note: Technically if you want to min/max to the highest degree you'll want to wait until 5 merges to start merging at level 15. I do it at 4 merges because you'll probably beat the game before you get beyond 5 merges and I am going to assume once you beat this game you don't want to sit there and grind for days for... no reason.
In this game all beasts are allowed 2 different elemental attacks. This is most important on your corner beasts because you'll be able to attack with them on 2 different elements. For example, if you have a Fire beast on an Earth corner you'll be able to use a Fire attack with him as well as an Earth attack. As aforementioned, when I am using a beast on a corner like this my second merge is typically the 2nd element I plan to use.
When Merging Beasts..
1. Wait until level 20 to merge your beast; at least until you've merged them 4 or 5 times. After the 4th/5th merge you will want to always merge them at level 15
2. Your first merge should change your primary skill to what you want
3. Your second merge should add a secondary skill to your beast (if a corner slot)
4. Your 3rd - 5th merges and beyond should select passive skills that you want for your beast
Of course you can do things however you wish, you don't have to merge your beasts in the same exact way that I do. As the saying goes, the world is your oyster. My job is to give you information about what I did and what worked for me along with everything I learned from researching online. Your job is to take this information and make your own informed decisions about what you want to do.
Now that we've covered mostly all we can with merging the next important topic is going to be stats and what they do. Sadly, this game doesn't tell you what any stat does anywhere. No tips tell you and if you google online about it you can find information but there is no straight forward write up like I have below.
The information I have compiled below is what I pieced together from reading Gamefaqs and various forum posts online. Since there is nothing in the game itself that tells you what these stats do there is no way to confirm the information below. Keep this in mind please! Also keep in mind that I am not suggesting that this information is inaccurate, in fact I am pretty confident that it's all accurate. It's just that I really dislike when I can not confirm something and be 100% sure it's right. As a guide writer it is a pet peeve of mine.
Anyway, as for what each stat does take a look at my quick list below for more information. Each beast in this game will typically have 2 or 3 of these stats that are higher than the rest of them; also each time a beast levels up these 'core' stats will be the ones that go up the most. Pay attention to what these stats are because it tells you what skills and/or magic will work best with that beast along with what position is best for them during combat.
What each stat does:
Strength: Increases the damage of "Skill Attacks" and also physical attacks.
Wisdom: This increases the damage of your Magic Attacks - you'll want this stat to be high on all of your casters.
Spirit: Spirit decreases the damage you take from Magic Attacks in this game.
Speed: I can't really find much online about this stat except that it makes you more difficult to hit with non-magical attacks. Also, if the Divine Beasts on your team have a higher average Speed stat than the enemies team - you'll attack first at the start of a round.
Vitality: Decreases the damage your beast takes from Skill Attacks.
Based on what we know of the stats above, you'll want to focus on Strength and Vitality for the "tanky" beasts. I strongly recommend you have the Fire side of your board as your tanky and burst DPS side. Fire has tons of physical attacks (that benefit from Strength) and beasts that use those attacks (like Ogs and Dracs) are some of the more tanky beasts.
Speed is the specialty of a few Divine Beasts and it's a stat that is typically best in one of the corner slots. Also, it's important to remember that the Speed stat is averaged out across an entire side during battle... This means that you can put 2 beasts with high speed next to one with low speed and essentially guarantee that you attack first due to a higher average Speed stat. I recommend this trick on the Water side of the board so that your healer always gets the first move during a turn.
Any magic users on your team typically go into corner slots and you'll want them to focus on Wisdom so that they deal more damage. I like to focus on either Speed or Vitality/Spirit along with Wisdom for these beasts to make them more meaty as well... but that's my personal preference. I really dislike glass cannon builds in games - I like all my characters to be as tanky as possible.
When it comes to building your group I can give you a few pointers that I use on all of my teams. Here is how I typically build my team in Jade Cocoon 2: Ogs and Kus are my main beasts that I put in the Fire row; the Ogs are primarily there for tanking and the Ku exists to boost my Speed and provide DPS.
Earth I typically put a Gara or Drac in the middle row and the ability I use on him changes a lot. I typically have 1 Og in the Earth/Fire corner and some sort of caster in the Water/Earth corner. Water is the second most important side for your team and I always have a Slimy that uses Medinia or the upgraded version in the middle. On the side I typically have 2 casters that use the strongest Water magic I have.
Last but not least you have the Wind side which I typically just use 3 high damage dealing magical casters on that side. Before moving onto the final portion of this guide, I figure now would be a good time to explain the differences between all of the Divine Beasts in this game.
You probably already have some knowledge about the different species of Divine Beasts; each Beast Hunter you encounter in the world will have a different type of mask depending on their favorite type of Divine Beast. I bring this up because all of these Beast Hunters will give you some information about their favorite Divine Beast species. They will also talk in a certain way depending on the group they belong to.
For a more detailed and beast specific run down of their differences, I have compiled an entire list below of every Divine Beast and what you should know about them.
Alcos are fast and deal good damage but have low HP and MP which results in them dying really quick. These beasts typically work best in corner slots, in particular the Water/Wind corners. Depending on what stats your Alco specialize in determine what skills you want to give it. If it's an Alco with high Strength then you'll want skill attacks, Alcos with high Wisdom will want spells.
Bugs are the glass cannons of the Jade Cocoon 2 world. They are very agile with high Speed and they often come with a high Strength stat too. Some bugs are better suited to casting than others, you'll have to check the stats on your bug to see which ones are being raised when they level up and which are not. Bugs are best for corner slots since they're squishy and (most of the time) you'll want to use some sort of status ailment ability on your bug. Sleep, Poison, Stun are all good choices for status ailments on this beast.
Dracs I find are best described as a jack of all trades but master of none beast. They have good all around stats and can fulfill a variety of roles, their biggest weakness is the lack of Speed that they come with. You can put Dracs into the corner slots or the middle slots on your Beast Amulet, these beasts are good in both.
Garas have decent Strength and good survivability - they're a good beast for the middle of the row in Earth. You can use a physical damage attack on them or you can use a support skill like Barrian/Barridia/Barrid. This skill erects a stone wall in front of your team which typically eats up to 50 damage from attacks before it falls. This is an amazing skill for support in this game.
Kus are fast and strong. You have 2 physical damage dealing Kus and 1 magic user, the spiky one is the magic user and the dog/boar ones are the physical damage dealers. I recommend you put your Kus onto corner slots as that's typically where they're most effective. They are strong but squishy and depend on dodging attacks more so than eating an attack.
Leifs have good Spirit and can become good magical casters with the right passive abilities. These guys are typically best for corner rows and I find it best to give them status effect skills instead of damaging ones. I have used a Leif on my team before but they definitely are not my favorite.
Maus can fit any team or play style. You can make a Mau a caster or a physical damage dealer - just pay attention to the primary stats on the creature you're raising. Also, Maus work well in both corner and center slots on the board making them quite versatile.
Nas are the best magic casters in the game since they come with the highest Wisdom stat of any beast. The biggest downside to a Nas is the fact that they are extremely squishy and easy to defeat. For this reason it's typically best to stick them into a corner slot and boost their survivability with passives.
Ogs have very high Strength and good survivability. In my experience these beasts are the tankiest and have some of the best single target DPS in the game. Every time I have played Jade Cocoon 2 I include 2 Ogs on my Fire side of the board that I use for my tanks/dps.
Slimies are the weirdest of the beasts and seem to only be good for one job - healing. I put Slimy beasts in the central portion of the Water row and equip them with Medinia/Medinite since they have high HP and MP. What I would recommend most is to focus on survivability with this beast if he's going to be your healer.
Now that you have all that information about the different species of Divine Beasts the last thing I need to educate you on is the different abilities in this game. This is the #1 question I had when starting out in Jade Cocoon 2 and I spent probably 40 - 60hrs playing this game solely experimenting with different abilities to learn what was good and why.
Best Fire Abilities:
Forbida: Forbida and Fobarina both summon a wall of fire in front of your team that damages anyone that attacks you. Essentially, this skill is a damage shield that lasts for a single turn and deals a pretty solid amount of damage.
Killer Chance: As the skill says, it deals XXL damage on critical hit. When it doesn't crit I believe it does slightly more damage than a normal attack. This skill is often listed in the "best fire skills" when you research online about this game but I personally would not recommend it.
Comet Strike: While this skill sounds like it would be a spell, it's not. This skill is actually a powerful melee attack, arguably one of the most powerful available to you in the Fire skill tree.
Burn Crash: Much like Comet Strike, this skill is one of the more powerful melee attacks available to you in the Fire skill tree.
Soldona: Soldona is an AoE magical attack that damages all enemies. This is the best fire attack in the game.
Best Wind Attacks:
Ad Slahnit: Arguably one of the best crowd controls in the game, this skill puts all enemies that it hits into a deep slumber for 2 turns. Each turn after that the beast will have a 25% chance of waking up. Any attacks that hit a sleeping beast are guaranteed to crit.
Dark Attack: Dark Attack deals a small amount of damage and blinds the target which will reduce their chance to hit you. This is a good skill to use on your team if your strategy is built around debuffs and/or CC.
Stun Attack: Much like Dark Attack, this attack deals a small amount of damage and stuns the target. Stun is a very powerful CC in this game, arguably one of the best.
Total Loss: This skill deals good damage and has a chance of inflicting confusion on enemies. Confusion works the same way in this game as it does most other games, each time the confused monster attacks there's a chance it'll hit itself instead of the enemy.
Samakilna: Lowers the Vitality and Spirit stats by 100% of all enemies it hits for 3 turns. The Vitality and Spirit stats reduce the damage you take from magic and skill attacks.
Sadoon: This attack reduces all of the opponents resistances to 0. As you may imagine this is a very powerful skill to use against bosses or tough enemies.
Maldiard: Maldiard is the highest damage single target lightning attack available for Wind Beasts.
Best Earth Abilities:
Mitrea: Mitrea is one of the best skills in the game, it boosts every beast's stats by 25% for 3 turns.
Barrian: Barrian summons a rock wall in front of your team that will absorb a certain amount of damage (or attacks) before falling. This ability provides you with a significant amount of survivability, especially because there is no guarantee the enemy will even knock it down during a single turn.
High Spirits: Deals some damage to the opponent and ups your attack each time it is used. This skill is best if you use it 3+ times during a single fight.
Ulvilude: This is the highest damage magical attack that you can use on an Earth beast. I find that this skill is best suited for the beasts on your corner slots.
Explode: This attack always hits for 150 regardless of what your stats are or what the enemies stats are. Unless you plan to level all of your monsters to 5+ merges it's unlikely many of your team's late additions will be able to break the 150 damage cap on this ability with another.
Best Water Abilities:
Yagiluna: This is an AoE attack that will absorb HP from the enemies it hits and return it to you. Honestly, I think this skill is better than Vahludide which is the best single target nuke available to Water beasts.
Selhamite & Selahmnis: Both of these skills will heal your entire party and cure any status ailments they're currently afflicted by. Obviously the heal on this skill is not as powerful as Medinia/Medinite since it also comes with a cure component.
Tishous & Tishalite: These skills will recover MP for your entire team when used. Depending on what skill you use, Tishous or Tishalite, the amount of EXP recovered will be different. This skill makes many of the lists I found online for "best water abilities" but I personally did not find it to be that useful.
Limena & Limenite: When you use these skills they will put a regeneration buff on all beasts that activates at the end of each turn for 2 turn. The biggest downside to these abilities in my opinion is that you can't stop your beast from spamming the ability each turn and spamming these skills is completely pointless.
Medinia & Medinite: I would argue this is the most important ability in the entire game. Medinia and Medinite will heal your entire team for some damage. You can put 2 beasts on the water side of your Beast Amulet with this skill and fully heal your team in a single turn.
Vahludide: Vahludide is the strongest single target water nuke in the game. It's a good skill to use on any corner slots of the Beast Amulet water side.