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A battle arena is a recurring feature in the Final Fantasy series. Battle arenas are locations in a game where the player's party can enter a battle against a number of enemies. The functionality of battle arenas in the different appearances have a great amount of variation.
Many battle arenas allow earlier enemies to be fought, often with a different AI script or stronger than the ordinary version of the enemy. Many battle arenas only allow one enemy to be fought at a time, while others only allow one character to be in the arena at a time. Defeating enemies will often yield better items while defeating stronger opponents often yield better items.
- Main article: Dragon's Neck Coliseum
The Dragon's Neck Coliseum, originally known as the Colosseum, is the first battle arena to appear in the series and is found in the World of Ruin. In the battle the player may only choose one character, and unlike future incarnations the player has no control over the character and instead they will use random commands against opponents.
Due to the amount of unhelpful commands characters may have and the large amount of spells characters may have learned, most players often use Umaro who always attacks. Due to the character being AI controlled, the preparations before battle and the stats of the player is all that effects the outcome, with an element of luck for using the wanted items.
The opponent fought is based on the item put forward, or the wager. If they win the battle they win a new item, or a reward, and lose their wager. If the player character dies, even if the enemy dies in the same attack, the player wins no item and loses their wager. If a character warps out of the battle they will retain their wager but not earn a reward. The enemies are the same as those found outside the coliseum, having the same statistics such as HP, MP, etc.
- Main article: Battle Square
The Battle Square is a battle arena found in the Gold Saucer. In the Battle Square the player must spend previously earned GP to face a series of battles. Before entering the battles the player must select one character to fight. The player has full control over the character and the character always enters the battle in the state they are in before they enter the battle, including their HP amount and LIMIT gauge. If the player dies during the battles their state is returned to as it was before they entered the battle, therefore if the player enters the Battle Square with a full LIMIT gauge they will always start the first battle with a full LIMIT gauge.
After the player dies in battle, or wins all eight battles, they will receive an amount of BP. The BP earned is not based on the enemies defeated, but the result of the slots machines after every round. The more impairing slot results will give the player more BP, and the later the battle is in the series will also earn the player more BP. BP is all lost when the player exits the Battle Square. BP can be spent on items including Cloud's ultimate Limit Break, Omnislash.
The Battle Square has three different states, with each state having three different sets of battles with different enemies, and the player will also receive different items. The first state of the Battle Square is on its first visit, and it will change into its section state after acquiring the Tiny Bronco. The third state of the Battle Square is after acquiring the Highwind, as it remains until the end of the game. Battles aren't one-on-one, but instead the player's character will face a formation of enemies. The final battle is always a one-on-one however.
One notable enemy is the Ghost Ship which has the Goannai attack which knocks the player's character out of battle. All enemies fought in the Battle Square are fought earlier in the game, however they will have greater stats. The stat increases are double HP and 150% Atk and Mag stats. All enemies are fought in the Battle Square are fought in other areas of the game, with exception to the Tonberry and Ho-chu enemies, however they were originally planned for other areas of the game.
After a number of prerequisites are met, the player can enter the Special Battle. The Special Battle is a fixed series of eight battles, with the final battle being the Proud Clod and its Jamar Armor. Since the prerequisites can be met before the Raid on Midgar the player can face Proud Clod in the Battle Square before the storyline boss battle.
In Final Fantasy IX there is a quasi-battle arena in the Weapon Shop in Treno. At four points in the game the player can face enemies. The enemies are fought in other places in the game however in all instances the enemy has different stats. The player can only select one character to fight in battle. They win prizes for beating the enemies, however none of these prizes are unique.
- Main article: Monster Arena
The Monster Arena is found in the Calm Lands. At the Monster Arena the player can purchase weapons with the Capture auto ability which they can use to "catch" enemies around Spira by landing a final blow on the enemy with the weapon with auto ability. Not all enemies can be caught, however most random encounter enemy fiends can. Enemies caught in the method can be fought alone at the Monster Arena, albeit for a price. The price is usually based on the toughness of the enemy, with enemies fought earlier in the game fought at a smaller price.
Rarely encountered enemies that have steals, drops, or bribe items that are needed by the user are easier to find since they are fought here. Each enemy can be caught up to ten times. When a certain number of specific enemies, based on species or on location, are caught, new enemies can be unlocked to fought at the Monster Arena. These appear in the categories Species Conquest, Area Conquest, and Original Creation. Battles at the Monster Arena are taken on by the entire party, and unlike in all earlier instances a single character does not have to be chosen.
The unique enemies found in the Monster Arena often break the damage limit and are therefore hard to face for an unprepared party. A number of the enemies drop stat spheres which can be used to replace empty nodes on the Sphere Grid. Due to this the Monster Arena is an important part of maxing stats at any ease. While it costs a significant amount of Gil to face the enemies, the Weapon and Armor drops dropped by the enemies often sell for as much as they cost.
After catching ten of every enemy and defeating all other unique Monster Arena enemies, the player can face Nemesis, one of the superbosses of the game and the most difficult enemy in the original Japanese and North American versions of the game.
- Main article: Coliseum (Final Fantasy X-2)
The Coliseum is a battle arena in Bevelle, and only exists in the Japanese exclusive International version of the game. The coliseum is laid out in a series of cups, and by winning these cups various prizes can be earned, such as new dresspheres and Garment Grids. Battles are taken on by the entire active party. A number of enemies fought in the Coliseum join the battle after being defeated. There is also a capture system.
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- Main article: Trial Mode
Trial Mode is a new feature added to the Japan-exclusive Zodiac Job System version of Final Fantasy XII. Using the save data from the game, the Trial Mode will load the characters and their current stats, which means if there are guests in the data, they will be loaded into the Trial mode as well. There are 100 stages within the Trial Mode. After completing each 10th stage, the player will be able to save their progress and receive a reward.
- Main article: Duel Colosseum
While it is possible to fight any opponent in Quick Battle, the Duel Colosseum pits players against an endless series of battles. The Duel Colosseum becomes available to the player after completing Shade Impulse. Various enemies, treasure chests and jobs appear as cards that cycle through the Hand, and the player can play one card from the Hand at a time.
Each time the player wins a fight in the Duel Colosseum, they receive an amount of medals based on the difficulty of the opponent defeated, and can spend those medals on treasure chests to receive rare equipment and trade accessories. Job cards provide beneficial effects, but the player can only have three job cards in play and must discard the oldest card when they play a new one. There are five courses with varying treasures and enemy difficulties. The player can fight on any course as long as they wish before exiting, and receive PP when they exit based on how many medals they earned, as well as a score based on how many opponents they defeated and their strength.
- Main article: Labyrinth (Dissidia 012)
The Labyrinth is the successor to the Duel Colosseum of the previous game, and is unlocked by completing the Treachery of the Gods. The Labyrinth is separated into cloisters of several floors, each cloister having a different gimmick of which types of cards appear. Each floor contains a door card which takes the player to the next floor or a new cloister, and eventually the player can find exit cards which allow them to leave.
The player is forbidden from taking their character's equipment into the Labyrinth, and must make use of whatever they can find in treasure cards or win from enemies. Many rare and powerful equipment pieces can only be acquired in the Labyrinth, but in order to take them out of the Labyrinth the player must reach an exit card or find a Geomancer card.
The Arena (闘技場, Tōgijō?) is a location in Magic Academy Peristylium Suzaku, situated on the left path from the Fountain Plaza, and it becomes available after completing Mission 2-2. The current field character can freely participate in a training where he or she battles three enemies at a time, until sixty enemies are defeated in total. When this is achieved, the player can choose to continue battling or return to the field. If the character is killed in battle, they simply return to the entrance of the Arena, revived and restored. Experience points and Phantoma can be gained and kept afterwords.
Alternately, the field character can also enter secret training, where he or she will gain experience points while the PSP is in Sleep Mode.