As in all other RPGs, equipment can be bought or found throughout the Golden Sun series and is an integral part of the gameplay experience. Equipment can be equipped to any Adept in the party in order to increase that Adept's statistics or grant them other abilities, such as increasing the chance that an Unleash will occur or automatically recovering HP and PP during battle. Many weapons also have Unleash effects, special attacks that occur randomly in place of the Adept's normal attack. Some equipment can even be used to grant and Adept new Psynergies that can be used outside of battle to solve puzzles (some of these Psynergies can be used in battle as well), although they do not affect any other aspects of the Adept in question. These Psynergy-bestowing items are often required to beat the game, and cannot be sold or dropped. The most common use for equipment, however, is to increase an Adept's Attack and Defense specifically.
Some pieces of equipment have special abilities that can be "Used" in battle like normal items, although there is always a chance they might break when Used. Broken equipment can still be equipped to gain its normal stat boosts, but its "Use effect" cannot be activated. If broken, equipment can be taken to any vendor (regardless of whether that shopkeeper sells that type of equipment) to have it repaired to full working condition; repairing broken items costs one-fourth the item's purchase value. Broken equipment can be sold, but for only one-half its purchase value. If sold, the broken equipment is automatically repaired (items normally sell for three-fourths their purchase value, meaning broken items have the repair cost deducted from their sell cost). It should be noted that a piece of equipment does not have to be equipped for its effect to be activated, although it must be in the inventory of an Adept that can equip it.
Most equipment count as Artifacts, special items that, if sold, can be repurchased from any appropriate vendor. Many equipment Artifacts are unique, either found while exploring towns and dungeons or naturally appearing in the vendors' inventory as the game progresses (equipment Artifacts found by vendors appear in both games and can be transferred from Golden Sun to Golden Sun: The Lost Age, allowing players to obtain multiple copies of these otherwise one-of-a-kind items). Most other equipment Artifacts are won as spoils during combat, although this is often a rare occurrence and may require the use of RNG-manipulation. There are even some pieces of powerful equipment that can only be obtained by taking Forgeable materials to Sunshine in Yallam and paying him to turn it into an item, a feature introduced in The Lost Age. The few remaining Artifacts are often acquired in unique ways, such as receiving them as gifts or winning them in minigames
Armaments and ProtectionEdit
Most equipment can be labeled as one of four main types: Weapons, Bodywear, Headgear, and Armwear. The latter three are often grouped together as "armor". Each Adept can only be equipped with one item from each of these types at a time. Each type can be divided into several classes of equipment, which determine which Adepts can equip which items. There are also a number of miscellaneous classes that, like the main types of equipment, an Adept can only equip one item of at a time (with the exception of Psynergy-bestowing equipment). However, these items are rare and relatively minor compared to the other types. This is reinforced by the game mechanics: a window appears that shows an Adept's current equipment when holding the R button while viewing that Adept's inventory, but only the four main types of equipment are shown.
Weapons are perhaps the most notable type of equipment, due in large part to their Unleash effects. Unleashes are special attacks unique to each weapon that occur randomly when an Adept performs a physical attack. Unleashes increase damage done, sometimes outright multiplying it, and often come with an additional effect, such as lowering the target's statistics, inflicting them with a status condition, or replenishing the wielder's HP or PP, among other effects. Also, all Unleashes are aligned with a certain element, causing the damage it does to be dependent on the wielder's power in and the targets resistance to that element. Unleashes also have a unique visual effect, some of which are relatively elaborate.
Not all weapons have Unleashes, but they all share a single purpose: to artificially increase an Adept's Attack rating. The Attack stat primarily affects how much damage is dealt by a physical attack, which does not cost any PP and is the only way to activate an Unleash, but it also affects the damage done by certain Psynergies (such as Ragnarok and Heat Wave) and all offensive Djinn. Because of all this, having a strong weapon equipped is recommended even for characters who are not likely to use physical attacks often.
Interestingly, an Adept's battle sprite changes to reflect which class of weapon that Adept currently has equipped.
- Main article: List of Long Swords
Long Swords are weapons equippable by the "warrior-type" Adepts: Isaac, Garet, Felix, and Piers (with the exception of the Sol Blade, which can only be equipped by the Venus Adepts Isaac and Felix). These weapons are among the strongest in the series, and the most powerful of each games' weapons are all Long Swords (although weapons of other classes often come close). This makes them ideal end-game weapons for the above Adepts, although there are exceptions. Unlike other weapon classes, Long Swords are fairly balanced in terms of the elements of their Unleashes.
- Main article: List of Light Blades
Light Blades are weapons equippable by Isaac, Garet, Ivan, Piers, Felix and Jenna. These weapons are some of the strongest in the series, often falling just short of the power offered by Long Swords. This is made up for in that more party members can equip Light Blades than Long Swords. Light Blades are easily the strongest weapons available to Ivan and Jenna in terms of raw attack power, although some Staffs may prove to have superior Unleashes for these two Adepts. Most Light Blade Unleashes tend to be aligned with the Jupiter element.
- Main article: List of Axes
Axes are weapons equippable by the "warrior-type" Adepts: Isaac, Garet, Felix, and Piers. Axes are powerful weapons, often competing with Long Swords for the position of "most powerful weapon". Although many of the first Axes available are stronger than Long Swords available at the time, they are eventually overpowered by other weapon classes and ultimately end up serving as "placeholder" weapons. Most Axe Unleashes tend to be aligned with the Mars element.
- Main article: List of Maces
Maces are weapons equippable by Isaac, Garet, Mia, Felix, Sheba, and Piers. Maces are perhaps the weakest weapon class in the series, serving as little more than "placeholder" weapons for the "warrior-type" Adepts. But for Mia and Sheba, who can only equip Maces and Staffs, Maces may prove to be powerful weapons until near the end of the game, where they are quickly overpowered by various Staffs. Most Mace Unleashes tend to be aligned with the Venus element.
- Main article: List of Staves
Staves are weapons equippable by the "mage-type" Adepts: Ivan, Mia, Jenna, and Sheba. These weapons are some of the strongest in the series, although they tend to be overpowered by Long Swords and Light Blades. Still, they often serve as the strongest weapons available to Mia and Sheba, who cannot equip any other weapons besides Maces. Interestingly, all but two Staves (Wooden Sticks and the Shaman's Rod) are Artifacts. Most Staff Unleashes tend to be aligned with the Mercury element, although there are also a large number of Jupiter Unleashes.
Main article: List of Bows
The bow is one of the two classes of weapons introduced in Dark Dawn, and the only ranged weapon in the series. They aren't very common, and only a few can be obtained. However, players will probably choose them at some point, because some of them have a high offensive potential, and the only two adepts capable of using bows, Karis and Amiti, can't use the Axe or Long Sword (so bows like the Saggitarius Bow are one of the better options for them). Another interesting thing is their unleashes and how all are unique to this class of weapon. Most Bows' unleashes are alligned with Jupiter.
Bodywear is one of the three armor-types of equipment. These items tend to give the wearer greater defensive boosts than the other types of armor, not surprising since it covers more of the body. Most equipment that regenerates HP in battle is Bodywear.
- Main article: List of Clothing
Clothing is a class of Bodywear equippable by all Adepts.
- Main article: List of Armor
- Main article: List of Robes
Headgear is one of the three armor-types of equipment. These items tend to increase an Adept's ability to use or resist Psynergy, such as increasing or regenerating PP or increasing elemental Power. In fact, most equipment that regenerates PP is Headgear.
Hats and CrownsEdit
- Main article: List of Hats and Crowns
Hats and Crowns (and to a lesser extent, Caps, Hoods, and Masks) are pieces of Headgear equippable by all Adepts. Most items that grant "warrior-type" Adepts HP-regenerating effects belong to this class, which also has many items that can be Used in battle.
- Main article: List of Helms
- Main article: List of Circlets
Armwear is one of the three armor-types of equipment. Armwear is actually more defense-oriented than other types of armor, often boosting the wearer's elemental Resistance or providing Use effects that can disable enemies or defend or heal allies.
- Main article: List of Gloves
- Main article: List of Shields
Shields are pieces of Armwear equippable by the "warrior-type" Adepts: Isaac, Garet, Felix, and Piers. Shields tend to give the wearer greater defensive boosts than other types of Armwear and are the most likely to increase the wearer's Resistance.
- Main article: List of Bracelets
Interestingly, although the armor class is called "Bracelets", most of these items have Armlet in their names.
These pieces of equipment don't fall into any of the previous categories but, like before, only one of each of these three classes can be equipped to an Adept at any given time. These three classes of equipment are often grouped together because of a similar theme among them: three of each type of items can be won by playing the Lucky Wheels minigame found in Tolbi in Golden Sun and in Contigo in The Lost Age; three more items of each class are coded into The Lost Age but are inaccessible without a hacking device (these may have been meant to replace the Lucky Wheels prizes from the past game, but this is pure speculation); by playing a password-enhanced game and completing certain side-quests in Golden Sun it is possible to obtain special "Golden" items (one for each class) during The Lost Age. These are not the only items belonging to these classes, however.
Since these are relatively minor compared to other types of equipment, they offer fairly minor defensive boosts and are most often equipped for their other effects. When buying them from vendors, Shirts and Boots count as armor and Rings count as items.
- Main article: List of Shirts
Shirts are items that can be equipped by all Adepts, although several are exclusive to male or female characters. There are fewer Shirts than the other classes of supplemental equipment and they are found later into the games than the other types, making them the least notable of the three. In fact, there are only seven Shirts: the three won playing Lucky Wheels, the three inaccessible Shirts, and the Golden Shirt, which increases HP slightly.
- Main article: List of Boots
Boots are items that can be equipped by all Adepts. Several Boots are designed to offer slight defensive boosts early in the game (when they are most likely to be worn to increases Defense), but these Boots often lower the wearer's Agility. The Golden Boots, conversely, greatly increase Agility. Boots are unique in that they are the only non-major type of equipment with so much as one item that isn't an Artifact.
- Main article: List of Rings
Rings are items that can be equipped by all Adepts. Rings are the most unique class of equipment in that almost all are Usable items rather than ones a person would equip to boost their stats. Exceptions are the Cleric's Ring, the only way to negate the effect of a cursed item without going to a sanctum, and the Guardian Ring, which increases the wearer's HP and Defense. They are also far more common than Shirts and Boots. The Golden Ring increases the elemental Resistance of all battling party members, similar to the Resist Psynergy.
The following items don't fall into any major equipment type and are too different from the supplemental equipment to be put anywhere but in a class all their own. This doesn't mean that they are completely unique (although some are), and in reality there are still many pieces of equipment that can be grouped together.
Utility Psynergy itemsEdit
- Main article: List of Utility Psynergy items
Utility Psynergy is basically any Psynergy designed for use outside of battle, or a Psynergy that can be used in battle but has a separate effect outside of battle (it can be debated that any Psynergy that can be used outside of battle qualifies as a Utility Psynergy). Most Utility Psynergy that can't be used in battle does not appear in the party's arsenal by default and require that special items be equipped in order for them to be used. These items cannot be dropped or sold, but can be equipped by any Adept regardless of their elemental affinity (with the exception of the Grindstone, which can only be equipped by a Venus Adept). Also, unlike all other types of equipment, an Adept can be equipped with as many Psynergy-bestowing items as they can fit in their inventory (in other words, up to 15 but theoretically more). Most of these items are required to complete the games, while others allow players to explore otherwise inaccessible areas or make required areas easier (such as during Colosso).
- Main article: List of Class-Changing Items
There is only one Card, one Whip, and one Book in the Golden Sun series (The Lost Age, specifically). Only one of these three items can be equipped to an Adept at a time, but they can be equipped by any Adept and change the person's Character Class when equipped. The classes granted by these items cannot be accessed in any other way and possess many Psynergies not available to any other classes. In order to advance to the next class in the series, the Adept must have an equal number of Djinn set for all three elements that Adept is not aligned with. These items are Artifacts and, if sold, can be bought from any item vendor for, interestingly, a multiple of 333 coins.
These are the truly unique items. Currently there is only one:
- Main article: Trident of Ankohl
The Trident of Ankohl (as an item, it is referred to simply as the Trident) is found in The Lost Age and is Used to break Poseidon's protective barrier; Using the Trident is the only way to do this, and if the barrier is not destroyed Poseidon cannot be defeated. When equipped the Trident increases the Adept's Mercury Resistance, making it useful for Jenna or, after the Reunion, Garet. The Trident must be forged from its three pieces, the Right Prong, Center Prong, and Left Prong, which are found in the Shrine of the Sea God, Tundaria Tower, and the Ankohl Ruins, respectively. Obaba's assistance is also needed to create the Trident.