Final Fantasy VII is chock full of memorable boss scraps, from the iconic duel with an angelic Safer Sephiroth to the almighty clash with the metamorphosing Hojo. Indeed, while there are plenty of contenders out there worth scrutinizing, two baddies in particular have found themselves a permanent fixture on the consciousness of Final Fantasy aficionados’ over the years – Emerald and Ruby Weapon. These gargantuan beasts were added to the North American and European versions of FFVII, and were not originally included in the Japanese release until the launch of the International Edition of the game. And boy, were they a couple of tough buggers to fell. In fact, to stand a chance to fight them, you had to embark on the arduous process of acquiring a Gold Chocobo just so you could obtain the items necessary to even give you a chance at dispatching them – unless you cheated, of course, in which case hang your head in shame.
As such, we decided to shine our latest Badass Bosses spotlight on the desert-dwelling Ruby Weapon, who in my humble opinion is unequivocally the easier of the two mega-bosses. I use that term lightly however, considering he’s still far and away tougher than any other boss beside Emerald, boasting a whopping 800,000 HP. If you want to duke it out with him however, you’ll first need to dispatch Ultima Weapon on disc three. And if you do opt to battle it, then you should probably know something: be prepared to fight this monstrosity solo. Ruby possesses an exceedingly nasty sandstorm attack that instantly – and permanently – removes a member of your party from the fight. He’ll typically use this twice, leaving you with just a single combatant. The weapon also has a plethora of other menacing manoeuvres up its tree trunk-sized sleeves; including a pair of stabby tentacles that will drain your HP/MP (the left tentacle drains your MP, while the right zaps you of HP), Ultima, Ruby Ray and some meaty physical attacks.
As such, in order to even survive a direct assault from this lumbering behemoth your character(s) had better be maxed out in terms of levels, or at least augmented with a copious supply of HP Plus Materia and Hero Drinks. Either that, or Lady Luck better be smiling down on you. Regardless, you had better hope that the one character you pick to dish the damage isn’t sucked up by the whirlsand attack; save the game before entering the battle just to be on the safe side. When it all comes down to it though, Ruby, like many of its FFVII stable mates, can be defeated via a myriad of preferred methods. However, every time I’ve gone toe-to-toe with Ruby, I’ve plumped for what I regard as one of the most effective, yet simple methods to fell this massive beast.
Compared to other strategies, this method doesn’t require laborious and copious amounts of grinding to max out your stats (I was only in the mid-60s with Cloud), nor does it require you to master everything under the sun or fiddle around with Hero Drinks or Lucky 7s. You will, however, need Knights of the Round, Hades, W-Summon, Mime and HP Absorb. Pair the latter with Knights, and bump off two party members; I prefer to have Cloud as my damage-dealer, so make sure he isn’t accompanied by any team mates prior precipitating a fight. Load your chosen fighter up with the materia required, but DO NOT equip Counter Materia – it has a habit of buggering the following strategy up somewhat.
Once the battle commences, immediately cast Hades followed by KotR using W-Summon. The former will only cause Ruby superficial injuries, but will crucially stun your opponent allowing Knights to do its thing without any fear of retaliation against your character. When your turn comes around again, simple Mime to repeat the above attack plan. However, it is important to make sure that, after two turns, you wait for Ruby to recover from the paralysis before starting the cycle again with W-Summon. Otherwise, miming the attack at this point will have him recover mid-summon, allowing your adversary to counter KotR.
Essentially, you must simply repeat the process over and over again until your adversary finally gives up the ghost. However, the fact Ruby possesses a huge amount of HP, coupled with the fact your attacks may not reach their potential in terms of damage caused due to your level/equipped weapon, means you’ll have a bit of wait on your hands before you triumph. Better grab a cuppa and some reading material while you sit through yet another rendition of Knights of the Round then, eh?
What strategy did you use in beating Ruby Weapon? Let us know in the comments section below, and keep an eye out for more Badass Bosses here at PSU in the coming weeks.