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Equipment (装備品, Soubihin?) is common to many role-playing games; the Final Fantasy series is no different. Equipment in Final Fantasy is generally divided into three categories: Weapons, Armor, and Accessories.
Nearly every playable character in the series has a variety of equippable Weapons, which generally determine attack power, element and status effects for the Attack command and other physical abilities. In almost every Final Fantasy game, Armor can also be worn to increase a character's defense. The number of armor slots available range from a single bracelet or shield in Final Fantasy VII and Final Fantasy X, to the many equipment slots in Final Fantasy XI allowing armor to be equipped to a character's head, neck, body, legs, hands, feet, back, and waist in addition to using shields and wearing rings and earrings.
Accessories are often included to provide a number of different special effects, from preventing status ailments to changing one command ability to another to inverting the effects of recovery items. In several games, multiple accessories can be equipped at once: two accessory slots are available in Final Fantasy VI and Final Fantasy X-2, a maximum of four slots can be gained in Final Fantasy XIII and Final Fantasy XIII-2, and up to ten different accessories can be equipped simultaneously in Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy.
Most commonly, the equipment slots available allow a character to equip a weapon, an off-hand item such as a shield or second weapon, headgear, body armor, and one or more accessories.
There are five equipment slots: Weapon, Shield, Helmet, Armor, and Gloves. In the original NES version, each character had eight slots to hold pieces of equipment in—four for weapons and four for armor. This was removed in the remakes, making all non-equipped equipment held in the inventory.
Characters can equip weapons or shields in their right or left hands. Depending on their prominent hand, weapons may get a decrease in potency when equipped in the wrong hand. Armor is equipped on the head, body, or arms. In the original NES and PlayStation versions, items to be used in battle are also equipped, being able to be exclusively used by the person who equipped them.
There are five slots available for equipment: Right Hand, Left Hand, Head, Body and Arms. Depending on the character's prominent hand, weapons and shields are equipped in different slots. Yang and Edge can equip two weapons at once.
Characters have a total of six equipment slots. Two slots, right and left arm, exist for weapons and/or shields, but two weapons can only be wielded if the Genji Glove is equipped. Gau and Umaro can't equip weapons, and Umaro can't equip anything but Relics specific to him. Two slots exist for head and body for armor and two further slots for Relics (accessories) exist, which can be equipped for various boosts and resistances. Not every character can equip every type of equipment, and some equipment pieces are character-specific.
All characters have three equipment slots available: "Weapon" which is required to be filled, "Armor", and "Accessory". Player can assign Materia to currently equipped weapons and armor.
All party members are required to be equipped with a weapon, while the "Armor" slot is an optional to be filled. All pieces of equipment are exclusive to one party member, and typically contain one to four slots for Auto-Abilities.
Weapons are tied to dresspheres and and each girl dons a different looking weapon to differentiate them. For the "Equip" option in the menu each girl can change her Garment Grid, dressphere set in the currently equipped Garment Grid, and can optionally fill two "Accessory" slots.
Each character starts with a "Weapon" slot which is required to be filled at all times and one "Accessory" slot which is not required to be filled. In the main story, two more "Accessory" slots are unlocked by advancing through the characters' Crystaria, and defeating the final boss allows player to acquire fourth "Accessory" slot from the final Crystarium expansion.
Both Serah and Noel start with the "Weapon" slot which is required to be filled, and four "Accessory" slots which doesn't require to be filled. Additionally, they both start with fifty "Accessory Capacity" points, and can raise the number of points by advancing through the Crystarium; the number of points increases respectively by 20, 20, and 10 points for a maximum of 100 points.
Human characters available through the downloadable content as Paradigm Pack allies have set weapons and they cannot be changed. Also, they cannot be equipped with accessories to enhance their battle performance. The only way to add 'equipment' for the allies is equipping them with an adornment which serves only as an aesthetic change and doesn't grant any bonuses.
Each character is required to be equipped with something in the main hand, which determines their class. Other pieces of armor can be equipped: the head, body, legs, and gloves are on the left side of the character, while the earrings, necklace, bracelets, and two ring slots are on the left side. Most pieces of equipment offer stat bonuses, which can be augmented by Materia to a certain extent.
There is also high-quality equipment, which gives slightly higher attack and defense bonuses and give heightened stat boosts, equal to the maximum amount of stat bonuses able to be applied to that piece using Materia.
Aetherial equipment can be found in dungeons, and, in addition to the regular bonuses found on that piece of equipment, also have randomized bonuses already on them. As a trade-off, however, Materia cannot be melded onto them.
Each character's equipment consists of a weapon, two accessories, two commands, and one defense command. Weapons must be equipped at all times, while the two commands can be selected from abilities or magic. If additional costumes are acquired by the player, then they can be changed here as well. Notably, the Equip menu is only accessible from the Save point.
Sumo can equip up to one weapon or spell. Unlike other games, items must be equipped in order for the player to use them.
Like many traditional RPGs, up to eight piece of equipment can be equipped on the four main characters. One slot for weapons, five slots for armor, and two slots for accessories. Temporary party members are limited in what they can equip.
Characters have equipment slots for the right and left hands, head armor, torso armor, an accessory, and an alternate costume if available. The Equip menu can be cycled with the Job, Ability, and Special menus via the analog stick, allowing for easy switching between characters and menus.