"Ni no Kuni" Walkthrough: The Temple of Trials
Now that the people of Al Mamoon are feeling a bit better, Oliver and company (when did his group get so big?) are off to the Temple of Trials to expand his familiar powers. Hopefully it's worth the trip… Rashaad seems to think this a necessary step, at least…
Leave Al Mamoon and head northeast, to the rocky cliffs in the north. A thin gorge separates the rest of the desert from the Temple of Trials. When you get halfway through, Rashaad will insist on a brief rest, and you'll settle down for the night. Oliver and Esther will have a conversation regarding Oliver's motivations for his journey, and in the morning you'll be underway again - with a new story added to the Wizard's Companion as a result. Go read My Other Self, then hit the road.
Once inside, Rashaad will speak a bit of the test, then open the seal leading to the Supreme Sage, who will administer the test. Sage Solomon is… interesting… to say the least. He'll agree to let Oliver take the Trials; talk to his stout aide, Umbopa, for the particulars. You can take the first two Trials in any order; we'll start with the left.
The Test of Friendship
This rather taxing trial is one of splitting your attention. Controlling Oliver and Esther simultaneously - Oliver with the left control stick, Esther with the right - you must guide them across platforms that slowly fall. This is less tricky than it sounds, though it takes a bit of practice to master.
- The first section is easy enough. Guide your two characters forward at the same time when they're going the same direction, then focus on one whenever their paths are different. The tiles fall slowly here.
- The second is a bit trickier. The paths are quite different, and you'll have to hit switches as you make your way along. You'll spend most of this section focusing on one character at a time; unless you're really falling behind, don't try to control them both at once. One will almost certainly fall.
- The third section seems the most difficult, but it's quite easy so long as you continue to focus on one character. The squares fall deceptively fast in the beginning, and may trick you into panicking. Continue to concentrate on one character at a time, moving forward five or six spaces at most with one before switching to the other.
Complete this trial and you'll earn Proof of Friendship. Next!
The Test of Wits
There are a few parts to this test, as with the last. Use the hints from the Monitor Bird to muddle your way through.
- In the first part, you need to use the spell Puppet String to manipulate the statues and put them in the holes in the rear of the room. The order from left to right is beast, dragon, warrior, bird.
- In the second, you need to use Puppet String to line up the movable blocks so they complete the image. This test looks easy, but it's slightly deceptive - you also need to take the front of the blocks (bottom, from your point of view) into account when forming the image. The blocks fit into the fifth column on the second row, the third column on the third row, the fourth column on the fifth row, the second column on the sixth row and the sixth column on the bottom row.
- In the final test you must again place statues in the correct slots, though this time it's according to symbols in the slots. Check with the Bird for a hint, then place the statues as so: beast in the top-left corner, the warrior beside it, the dragon in the top-right corner, and the bird on the second-to right panel on the bottom row.
Completing this trial will earn you Proof of Wits. Most excellent.
Two trials down, and the Test of Strength is next. Save, heal, and talk to Solomon when you're ready. Battle time in the Solosseum!
The Test of Strength
In this fight you're up against another massive guardian beast, this one called Bashura. Despite how he looks, Bashura is pretty easy for two reasons: he's slow and he doesn't hit that hard. He is highly durable, though, and only his front is open to attack, so expect to take a lot of small hits while fighting this behemoth. Frostbite is a fantastic spell to use against Bashura, and physical attacks with a dedicated fighter aren't too bad either. Heal when necessary, Defend whenever Bashura is about to use Devastation (though it's not nearly as bad as the name implies), and whittle him down to size. Beat Bashura and you'll earn a Spirit of the Temple, a page describing Bashura, and Proof of Strength.
You're done! Solomon will congratulate you with the Bridge and Broom Broom spells. He'll also teach you the secrets of recruiting monsters to your side, and give Esther the Heart-Winning Harp to wooing new familiars. You can also pick between a Shonky-Honker, a Boogly-Boo and a Naiad for a new familiar in the ensuing battle, which teaches you how to use Serenade with Esther. He'll also teach you how to metamorphose your familiars - in this case, your trusty Mite into a Mighty Mite. This will revert it back to level one, but the change is worth the dividends in the future.
Now that you know what those weird plates in every city are for, Esther wants to return to Al Mamoon to see her father. Make it so.