Who Knew Suspenders Could Be So Deadly?
Miguel, Leena's father who was thought to be lost at sea, is an unassuming fellow. He has a dorky hat, wears suspenders, and seems pretty friendly. You wouldn't peg him for anything besides an NPC you meet a few times. Surprisingly, though, Miguel is a boss in Chrono Cross, and he's one of the hardest ones you'll come across. He's also mandatory for making it through the game, and since you can't power level, you'll never be able to outright trounce him by grinding. What's to be done?
This guide will help you beat Miguel in Chrono Cross. The fight isn't as difficult or as lengthy as it seems, so long as you've done some prep work--and use the proper party.
Though Miguel can use normal attacks, most of his moves consist of Elements. This is why he's such a deadly opponent, as the majority of his Elemental moves dish out a lot of damage in a very short period of time. Everything he uses is White Innate, so you'll have at least an idea of what's coming next. Miguel uses the following Elements while battling you:
- Anti-Black. This is a debilitating move, as it prevents a character from using Black Innate Elements, Miguel's greatest weakness. Throwing a Daemon's Charm on Lynx at a minimum will save you from this move.
- Turn Black. Changes a character's Innate Color to Black. All of Miguel's Elements are White Innate, so this will cause him to do more damage--and he'll follow it up with PhotonBeam. Expect a lot of damage to follow, though typically not a lethal amount unless the character was already damaged.
- Strong-Minded. Miguel's Special Defense goes up. Annoying, but almost a free turn.
- Weak-Minded. Lowers a character's Special Defense. Also annoying - and terrifying, because Miguel immediately follows it up with ...
- Holy Dragon Sword. Coupled with Weak-Minded, Holy Dragon Sword will usually kill its target in one hit, regardless of their Innate Color or health. Your character needs to be very strong to survive this move.
- Meteor Shower. Once Miguel has taken enough damage, he'll use this on the whole party for mid-100s amounts of damage. It certainly hurts, but as long as you've been healing consistently, it shouldn't be lethal.
- Holy Light. Once Miguel takes enough damage, he'll also use Holy Light. This also hits everyone in the party but does damage in the 200s and will Fatigue everybody who survives. You can purchase a Holy Light Trap in Marbule to snag Holy Light, though if you don't already have one - you needed to visit while in Another World - you'll be out of luck. Heal immediately after this attack comes out, then go on the offensive, as Miguel is almost done for.
Choosing a Party
Lynx is a mandatory member of your party at this point, so you'll need to make a decision on your other two members. Who you choose will depend on how much you'll be relying on normal, physical attacks vs. Elements:
- If you're going to be using normal attacks (more on why you'd do this below), you'll want both Lynx and Harle. Lynx hits hard, and Harle comes close to his damage output. Their Black Innate status will increase their damage output, as well. The third member is up to you, though someone with high amounts of health (300+) and good physical attacks is recommended.
- If you're going with mostly Elements, you will not want Harle on your team. Having two Black Innates is dangerous for this fight if you can't downplay Miguel's damage output. Starky is a great choice as a healer; otherwise, again, go with someone who has lots of health and isn't Black Innate. Doing lots of damage from Black Element attacks is a necessity, so make sure your third party member is loaded down with Black Elements.
In either case, Sprigg is a pretty decent choice. Even if you haven't been using her all that much--or at all--her Lagoonate Doppelgang transformation can dish out several hundred points of damage with normal attacks. It also won't take any extra damage from Miguel's attacks.
There are a few paths you can take towards beating Miguel, though all of them emphasize doing as much damage as you can, as quickly as you can. Powerful Elements of any color can do this--White is the exception--though, for the most part, you'll want to use Black Innate Elements to tear through Miguel's health. Lynx has two Techs that will do nicely for this purpose, while everyone else can allocate Elements. Free-Fall is excellent in this fight, and you can trap more of them AirFrames at the Isle of the Damned.
Regardless of which Elements you use, you absolutely should not use White Innate Elements other than Revive. Miguel is great at quickly changing the Field Effect to all white, and when he does, his damage output rises. This fact makes allocating Black Innate Elements to your characters all the more useful, as they'll override the White Field Effect.
Your greatest ally in this battle is healing, particularly the Revive Element. All of your party members need to have healing Elements, and your non-Lynx characters should, ideally, have Revives. It's possible to have three Revives at this point in Chrono Cross:
- One is in the barracks of Viper Manor in Another World. If you don't already have it, then you're out of luck.
- A second is in Sprigg's dimension, where you started off as Lynx. You'll need to roll a boulder to get at it.
- The last is in the sewers beneath Viper Manor in Home World.
Miguel doesn't use Holy Dragon Sword that often, so two Revives should be enough to get you through the battle. Make sure they're on different characters, so you don't risk getting locked out of reviving altogether if that character happens to die. If you chose Starky, definitely give him one of the Revives. Be sure to heal all other damage, as Miguel can easily wipe a character in two hits with his other attacks.
If you're having lots of trouble with this fight, then you should try to remove Elements from the equation, and Diminish is your best option. Found by defeating DeadHeads--a boss on the S.S. Invincible and a normal, albeit somewhat rare, enemy on the Isle of the Damned--Diminish will temporarily halve all Elemental damage to everyone on the field. Yes, this includes damage you do to Miguel, but cutting his damage to you makes health management much easier. Stick to normal physical attacks and wallop him to death until Diminish wears off, then, hopefully, use it again.
You'll earn 1,540 Gold and a Creamer's Scarf for defeating Miguel. Congratulations on beating one of the most difficult bosses! If you can take down Miguel, you can handle the rest of Chrono Cross.