Final Fantasy VI Walkthrough, Part Twenty-Four: Imperial Palace
Terra has managed to open the Sealed Gate, letting the espers run amok in the human world. Unfortunately, their rampage results in the Blackjack being knocked out of the sky. It lands near Maranda, leaving the Returners with a heck of a walk to distant Vector.
The Blackjack is grounded for the moment, and will remain grounded for some time. Assemble a party, preferably one with some strong, quick, powerful special attacks, and make tracks for Vector. The walk can be shortened considerably by using the Chocobo Stable in the forest southeast of Maranda.
Vector has looked better. The Returners and Narshe guards have arrived to find the place on fire and abandoned by the populace. Head north to the Imperial Palace to chat with Banon and Arvis, then check out the Palace itself. One of the emperor's flunkies will show up and escort you into the emperor's throne room. Be sure to set Auto-Dash to on before you approach him.
Emperor Gestahl, it seems, has had a change of heart. The espers have ruined his Empire, and he seeks peace with them before they ravage the world. He invites the Returners to a banquet to discuss a return to happier times… but first, he asks that they talk to the guards in his Palace. Not all are convinced that an end to war is the right path to take.
This, and the banquet that follows, are all part of an elaborate mini game wherein you earn points for conduct. The more points you get, the better your rewards at the end of the banquet. Your first task is to run around the Imperial Palace and talk to all 24 soldiers in the four minutes it will take to ready the banquet. Try to get to them in this order.
- There are two soldiers in Gestahl's throne room, but they don't grant you any points. Ignore them.
- There are four soldiers in the entry hall.
- There are three soldiers at the entrance to the Imperial Palace. One of them will attack you as Mega Armor. Eliminate it quickly with lightning magic.
- There are seven soldiers in the barracks up the stairs to the right of the throne room. One wandering in the main barracks will attack, as will the man in the bathroom at the rear of the barracks. Both are Seargents that will resist physical attacks; batter them with magic.
- There's one soldier in the stairwell leading up to the top of the Imperial Palace. He will also attack you as a Seargent.
- There are four soldiers on the top of the Imperial Palace.
- There's one soldier inside the room at the peak of the Palace, where Kefka once placed a Slave Crown on Terra's head.
- The last three are in a set of two rooms, a library and a bathroom, up the right set of stairs from the throne room.
- Also up the right set of stairs is a jail where Kefka is being held. Do not speak to him! He will ramble for far too long, eating up your time. Avoid treasure chests on this circuit, as well.
After you've finished with the soldiers you'll be dragged into the banquet hall, where Gestahl will chat with the party. Provide the follow answers when prompted:
- 'To our homelands.'
- ' Leave him in jail.'
- 'That was inexcusable.'
- 'Celes is one of us.'
Gestahl will then ask if you have any questions. Ask all three, once each, starting from the top. After you're done, indulge Gestahl in discussing the espers. More answers:
- 'They have gone a bit too far…'
- 'Why did you start the war?' (Assuming that was, indeed, the first question you asked.)
When prompted by Cid, take a break. Talk to the soldiers on the other side of the table and fight them during the break. Beating them within the time limit (easily done) will earn you more points. Retake your seat to resume the conversation. Just one more statement:
- 'That your war is truly over.'
After that, Gestahl will ask to borrow Terra's power to reach out to the espers, which have escaped to Crescent Isle. Say 'Yes' when first asked to earn points and bring the banquet to an end.
In the aftermath the team will discuss their options, and Locke will push his company on Terra. Everyone else will remain behind to keep an eye on Emperor Gestahl. Your next destination: Albrook, home of a Magitek transport that will take Locke and Terra to Crescent Isle to find the espers.
Head out of the banquet room. A guard will approach you and provide you with gifts depending on your level of decorum during the banquet. You'll receive the following in this order:
- The withdrawal of troops from South Figaro.
- The withdrawal of troops from Doma Castle.
- The contents of the Imperial Base's armoury (the small base to the east of Albrook).
- A Tintinnabulum.
- Last, a Ward Bangle.
Now you're free to have a look around the Imperial Palace for items. To the left of the path to the throne room is a small storeroom with an Alarm Earring and an X-Potion. In the barracks is an Ether. Last, in the small room with the bookshelves and its bathroom is a Gale Hairpin and a Holy Water.
Before you go to Albrook, assuming you were at least moderately polite during the banquet, head to the Imperial Base in the east. You'll find the following in the chests: an Angel Wings, an X-Potion, a Hi-Ether, Hermes Sandals, a Reflect Ring, an Elixir, an Alarm Earring, an Angel Ring, a Flametongue from the oven and a grand sum of 41,000 gil. Aren't you glad you were polite?
Wander to Albrook and check out the port, which is now open for business. Have a look at the crate beside you when you appear for a Teleport Stone and get on the boat. General Leo is waiting, and he'll introduce you to two new travelling companions to Crescent Isle: Shadow… and Celes. Huh. Go stay in the inn, watch the long set of cut scenes that follow after returning to the port, and prepare to touch down on new territory!
(Fans of this walkthrough: I'm completing it elsewhere. Please have a look at this link to get a look at the remainder of Final Fantasy VI from my perspective. Rest assured, the new walkthrough contains the same sparkle and foolishness as this one.)