After I finished restoring Norende, I had a bit of a problem – the weapons and armor traders sold a lot cool stuff, but most of the things I wanted were pretty pricey, upwards 100,000 pg. So, I looked up some pg farming tricks, and found an interesting one on USgamer. It revolves around the Big Pharma ability Merchants have, and basically, what it does is it heals your enemies, but every time you do so, you get paid in pg the amount of HP you restore for the enemy. So, say your merchant heals 1000 HP for your enemy, you will get 1000 pg that very turn.
The in-game description of it:
“Restore one enemy’s HP and make the target pay pg equal to the number of HP recovered.”
So the trick here is to attack the enemy every turn, then use Big Pharma on it to heal them back, keeping them alive and earning pg at the same time. If you can get your attacks to balance the amount of HP your merchant heals on the enemy, you can put the battle on auto and have it in an attack-heal loop indefinitely (that is, until you want to cash in).
There are many ways other people have used this trick – most involve healing with a mage every turn, but the method I used only needs one knight to tank for the whole party. Note that I am only at chapter 3 at the time that I wrote this, so while this works well for me, if you’re up against tougher enemies you probably will still need to throw in a Blessed Shield and some healing to your command loop to keep up everyone’s HP.
Choose a suitable target – one whose HP is not so low you would OHKO it, but of course not one that is unmanageable. As I am only in Chapter 3, I went with a Sandworm, which has 6000 HP. Also a reminder, undead enemies won’t work because healing abilities do damage to them instead.
If you do need to heal, try to get your hands on the aforementioned Blessed Shield. You can get one at the Norende Armor Shop, once it’s upgraded to level 7, and with it you can cast Cura without spending any MP.
Note: To use it in battle once a character is equipped with it, you must choose it from the Items option – if you just use the skill Cura you’ll still be using MP.
I spammed Soul Crush (Valkyrie ability that does MP damage) 4 times with Ringabel so that the Sandworm couldn’t use Earthquake anymore – Protect Ally only covers physical attacks, so Earthquake could potentially KO party members – then I had Tiz use Examine (the Freelancer ability that shows the enemy’s stats) so I could keep the Sandworm’s HP in check and make sure it doesn’t die. After that, I had the following set of commands on loop:
Tiz – Default
Tiz is the hardest hitter in my group and his basic attack would not have balanced out Agnes Big Pharma, so I just had him hang back and Default after he Examined the Sandworm.
Edea – Default (Protect Ally)
Edea is my knight, and with the Protect Ally support ability, she will automatically take damage for any party member whose HP is below 20%. As the Sandworm here only does 1 damage to Edea every turn, she could tank for quite some time without the need for healing.
Ringabel – Attack
I equipped him with a lower power spear so that he did damage roughly around the same as Agnes’ Big Pharma would recover for the Sandworm.
Agnes – Big Pharma
And then, of course, Agnes would use this Merchant ability to heal the Sandworm while bringing in the pg. I changed her class to Salve Maker prior to starting the battle – it will increase the amount of HP restored, as magic users get a boost in the MIND stat. As a Salve Maker, she was easily making 1000+ pg every turn.
After I had this set up, I basically put the battle on auto and fast-forward, then set it aside for about an hour or two while I did other things. When I got back to it, I ended the battle and found myself almost 700,000 pg richer.
If you want to see this in action, I do have a (poorly recorded) video of it here:
I recorded this way earlier, so there are some differences – Agnes was still a Red Mage at the time, so she was only healing for 600-700 pg every turn, and so I had to adjust Ringabel’s attack power accordingly, but the idea is still the same.
It’s on normal speed so that you can see what’s happening, but sped up and on auto, this can make lots of pg in a relatively short amount of time. It’s a pretty flexible trick, so make up your own set up with it and see what works best for you. Honestly, the toughest part here was grinding for the JP to get a level 11 merchant, but once you’re there, this is really easy to pull off.