To Arms! is a complicated and challenging game, so this online manual is available to help you through it. This manual will assume that you have a familiarity with basic RPG gameplay and will attempt to concentrate specifically on the areas where To Arms! differs. With that said, if you have ever played Final Fantasy Tactics, you are well on your way into knowing how to play To Arms!. Besides the actual battles, most systems of To Arms! are extremely similar to those of Final Fantasy Tactics.
All generic units start as Recruits. You can change the class of generic units at any point outside of combat from the Class submenu of the main menu, which is unlocked midway through Episode One. Story units are 'stuck' in their starting class, but the unique classes of story units tend to be much more powerful and versatile than generic classes.
The following classes are available to all* generic units:
The War Priest
The Healing Sister
*Except for those which are only open to a certain gender.
Job Points (Earning And Spending)
Job Points (JP) are earned by units for all actions taken in combat, including attacking and defending, as well as using skills and items. JP aren't added when the action is taken, but at the end of combat. JP is only earned for one CLASS at a time--the one that the unit currently occupies. If you want to advance a class by learning its skills, you must be in the chosen class. JP are spent to learn class skills--some class skills have only a flat JP cost, while others require other class skills as a prerequisite.
Cooldowns and Alternative Skill Costs
Only magic-using classes in To Arms! use PP (Power Points) to fuel their skills, but there are always costs for using a skill instead of attacking. This cost might be a Cooldown (a number of turns you have to wait before using the skill again), a loss of Hit Points, a times-per-battle limit, the use of gold, or simple that the skill has reduced accuracy compared to a normal attack (in exchange for doing more damage) or has lower damage (in exchange for inflicting a status effect). Often these alternate costs will be combined to limit the use of skills that cost no PP to use.
This page has some useful, relatively up-to-date almanac style information on the weapons and armor available in To Arms!.
NOTE: BY HOLDING DOWN THE A-KEY AND MOVING THE UP AND DOWN ARROW KEYS YOU CAN SEE HOW NEW EQUIPMENT EFFECTS EVERY PARTY MEMBER'S STATS.
Every video gamer already knows this, but it's not always the case in RPG Maker games so one of my testers felt I should bring it up. Destroying all enemies is the objective of most but not ALL battles in To Arms!. In other fights, you will be trying to quickly eliminate certain targets or to hold your own for a set number of turns,.
Hints and Tips
* To Arms! is very hard, especially if you are used to games where you would almost have to actively try to lose. Save early, often, and in multiple slots! While the creator and head tester can complete the game standing on their heads blindfolded at this point, we don't imagine it will be this easy for people who didn't make the game and haven't played through it hundreds of times!
* Some battles give you a full-heal before hand, and others don't! While this may seem erratic at first, the reason is that your characters receive a full heal whenever they have significant time to rest and recuperate. When trying to determine if you are 'ready' for a difficult battle, look for cues in the story as to whether or not your characters have had time to rest,
*In Episode One alone, your main characters each have ten or more skills to choose from, and you will only be able to unlock some, and you have four generic units each of which can join any of eight classes each of which will have up to ten different skills to unlock. That means that the party and skillset combinations in To Arms! are astronomical. If the game seems too hard, change your strategy! Go back to your last save and assign your classes, equipment, and JP differently! There are dozens of different, valid, proven ways to win To Arms! but even more ways to lose. Just because you are getting your ass kicked doesn't mean that the game is necessarily too hard--try building your party differently!
*On subsequent play throughs, it's possible to skip the introduction...you are encouraged to try different combinations of classes and skills after beating the game the first time. My testers tell me it should be possible to beat the game with every possible combination of classes, including 'four of' everything. Some will definitely be harder than others.
*Save your game at the end for use in To Arms! Episode 2.
Thanks for playing, and have fun!