- “ I don't like running...”
Hippaul (カバオ, Kabao?) is a minor Non-Player Character in Final Fantasy IX who lives in Alexandria. Hippaul's Father owns the Alexandrian Inn, and Zidane notices that the boy seems to be more adept at managing it than his father.
Something of a Tetra Master expert, Hippaul's stash of cards can be found in the Bell Tower of Alexandria, and his stash varies depending on when it is found. If found during Disc One, the stash contains an Ironite Card, a Goblin Card and a Fang Card.
To accomplish this, the player must either refuse Puck's offer to see the show, or simply visit the Bell Tower before trying to get Vivi's ticket stamped (stamping the ticket is what triggers Puck's appearance). After obtaining the cards, the player can then return to him. On Disc Three, the stash will include rare eidolon Cards; Shiva and Ramuh, as well as the other cards if they were missed on Disc One.
Hippaul can also be challenged to a footrace at the beginning of Disc Three. The race is available for a very short time only, and the opportunity to race him ends as the player agrees to see Ruby's play. Hippaul, along with his mother, can be found on the main street in Alexandria. Hippolady will mention that she wants her son to lose some weight.
Hippaul gains levels as he loses to Vivi during the successive races. He quickly becomes extremely fast and difficult to defeat. Every ten levels up to 80 the player is rewarded with a prize; there are no rewards at levels 90 or 100. Hippaul gains five levels if Vivi beats him by a lot, but he only gains one level otherwise.
|Level 10||Wyerd Card|
|Level 20||Carrion Worm Card|
|Level 30||Tantarian Card|
|Level 40||Armstrong Card|
|Level 50||Ribbon Card|
|Level 60||Nova Dragon Card|
|Level 70||Genji Card|
|Level 80||Athlete Queen|
There are several methods for making the game slightly easier: The most basic is to reconfigure the controller so that instead of and , the buttons would be, say, and . Another technique, albeit one with minimal effect, is to open the disc cover or disc tray, to slow the game down very slightly. If playing via emulator, decreasing the game's frame-rate effectively increases the rate at which button presses are received making it trivial to defeat Hippaul even at higher levels.
It is worth noting that jumping the gun is impossible, so one can start pressing the buttons before the race begins to get into the rhythm. If the player is willing to treat the controller roughly, it can be easier, for example, to configure opposing shoulder buttons and place the controller upside down on a solid surface, rocking it left and right to press the buttons.
The ideas for Hippaul and the item Athlete Queen appear to derive from a Greek Myth on Atalanta, where the huntress Atalanta decrees that the man who can beat her in a footrace becomes her husband. Many men die in the attempt, until a man named Hippomenes takes up the challenge and, with the help of the Goddess Aphrodite's golden apples, wins the race.