You will arrive in an area listed as the “Junon Area” when you exit the Mythril Mines. There are two optional side quests which you can complete in the Junon area:
The items and rewards you receive for completing the Fort Condor side quests and missions throughout the game, while useful, are negligible and are certainly not required in order to complete the game. Completing the Fort Condor side quest now, on your way to Junon, will result in you being rewarded with a Magic Comb weapon for Red XIII.
While I would recommend avoiding the Fort Condor mission, you should take this opportunity to obtain Yuffie, one of the two secret optional characters in Final Fantasy VII. Yuffie has a chance to appear during any battle in a forested area of the game. The likelihood of her appearing depends on the forest, but the forest outside of Junon has only at 12.5% likelihood that she will appear, so you have have to be patient. Check out the Secret Characters section for more information about how to obtain Yuffie.
Remember to place her in the back row if you decide to add her to your main party. You can also steal a Boomerang weapon for Yuffie if you plan on using her from an enemy called “Formula” shown in the screenshot below. It has much better Attack and Attack % stats than the 4-point Shuriken that she comes equipped with.
Continue onwards to Junon which is located on the west coast behind a small hill as shown in the screenshot below.
The town that you first arrive in is called Under Junon and it is actually the small town located just outside the walls of Junon. The Weapon Store near the entrance to town does not sell any actual weapons. You can purchase Mythril Armlets (which you should not need; you likely have better armor at this point in the game), Potions, Phoenix Downs and Tents.
There is a boss battle coming up so be sure that your characters are properly equipped with Materia. Melee characters will not be able to attack the boss with regular attacks. You can get around this by equipping melee characters with magic-based Materia (Fire, Ice, Lightning), using Long Range Materia or just using characters with long range attacks (Barret or Yuffie). Go down to the beach and a cutscene will begin involving Priscilla and Mr. Dolphin.
Boss Battle: Bottomswell
As mentioned above, you will not be able to use regular melee-based Attacks against Bottomswell. You can use Long Range Materia to allow a melee character to use attacks and Barret and Yuffie can get around this by default as their attacks are long-ranged. Equip each of your other characters with magic Materia, Enemy Skill Materia (to use Flame Thrower), the Choco/Mog Summon. Bottomswell is also susceptible to Bio so use Poison on him very early on in the fight.
Bottomswell will use a spell similar to Reno’s Pyramid attack called Waterpolo - it will prevent a character from moving or attacking, but this time it will also leech HP from that character. You will have to use a magic spell in order to break it.
Reward: Power Wrist
The group will notice Priscilla passed out and not breathing lying on the beach. Cloud will have to perform CPR on her in order to bring her back to life. A breath size indicator shaped like two lungs will be displayed on the screen indicating how full Cloud’s lungs are. He can break in up to 10 ‘ticks’ on the lung meter before he must exhale. It takes approximately 41 breaths to bring Priscilla back to life - you can aim for 8 or 9 ‘ticks’ each exhale and not have to worry about going over the max of 10.
The old man will take Priscilla away once you have revived her. Rather than follow the old man and Priscilla, go and speak to the lady in pink and red standing outside of the house near the entrance. She will suggest that you “come in for a while”. Choose to take a rest in the home when presented with the option to do so.
Follow the team out into the middle of town when Cloud awakens the next morning. Priscilla will emerge from the house once you try to climb up the steps. She will hand over an ‘amulet’ which is actually the Shiva Materia; your next summon.
Follow Priscilla down to the beach again - she will call over Mr. Dolphin to try and help you get to the top of the transmission tower in the middle of the water. There is an easy trick to getting My. Dolphin correctly aligned in the water to get Cloud up there. Rather than moving Cloud around at all just blow the whistle twice in succession without moving. Cloud and Mr. Dolphin properly align themselves after the first jump to get you up on the second. Travel towards the based of the structure and climb up.
Your first glimpse at the Highwind. Walk towards the camera and then towards the control panel on the large platform. Walk towards the southeast to enter the Junon Airport barracks. The red guard will scream at you to get into the change room. Do what he says and open the locker to change into the Shinra Soldier uniform.
There is a Save Point just past the entrance to the Junon Airport Path after you are done changing into the uniform. I would recommend saving before proceeding if you would like multiple attempts at completing the parade mini-game successfully.
Exiting the barracks leads into the large city of Junon.
This mini-game can be fairly difficult even for long-time fans of the series. The rewards are based on the ratings which are displayed in the bottom-right corner of the screen:
I have included a video below which demonstrates how to get above 50 percentage points, but it focuses on three main points.
You need to switch your controller to the default controller setting in order to successfully “march” once you are in formation (as shown in the video included below). Using a customized controller setting will cause the “Circle” button to function incorrectly. This is a glitch in the game’s programming and there is no way around it.
The three things you need to do in order to get above 50% are:
1) Get down to the bottom right corner of the formation as soon as you can. The best way to do this is to run straight towards the camera and through the soldiers as they pass. This is much easier than trying to go around like the other Shinra Soldier did
2) Stay in line with the Shinra Soldiers beside Cloud. It does not matter if their steps line up - the most important factor is that you are in a line; not too far ahead or behind.
3) Press the “Circle” button each time you see “Now” on the screen. The “Now” command will only come up if you are perfectly in line with the other Shinra Soldiers. The command will continually pop-up while you are in formation and you can easily press it 8 or 9 times before the screen fades to black. Staying in line and pressing “Circle” a bunch of times is the easiest way to get a high rating.
Use the video below to help you with understanding the timing:
At the end of the next sequence involving Rufus and Heidegger one of the Red Shinra Soldiers will ask you if “You messing with the army?” It does not matter which response you choose. The next scene in the locker room will provide you with an opportunity to practice at the next mini-game which is essentially Simon Says using the Playstation controller’s buttons. Following the tutorial you will be free to explore the city of Junon (also known as Upper Junon).
The first store is the Materia Store which has a man standing out front of it. You can purchase Sense Materia, Seal Materia, Restore Materia, Heal Materia and Revive Materia. Both Seal Materia and Revive Materia are new. Seal Materia will allow you to cast Sleepel and eventually Silence once properly levelled. These two spells are of questionable value and I would suggest that you can avoid purchasing Seal Materia altogether. Revive Materia essentially replaces Phoenix Downs as your method of reviving KO’d characters. The downside is that equipping Revive Materia will reduce the character’s Strength, Vitality and Max HP while increasing the character’s Magic, Magic Def and Max MP. As such, it should only be equipped on a character who will focus on magic-based attacks (if you choose to equip it at all).
Travel down the alleyway to find the Weapon Shop. You can purchase the following weapons:
You may already have many of these weapons if you stole them from previous enemies listed earlier on in this guide but you can purchase them in the shop if you missed any. You will find some of the Turks in the basement but there is nothing else that you can do down there.
The Item Store is the next door to the left of the Weapon Store. You can restock on Potions, Hi Potions, Phoenix Downs, Antidotes, Eye Drops, Echo Screens, Hypers, Tranquilizers and Tents. You may have noticed that some of your characters were afflicted with the ‘Sadness’ status effect after battles in the Junon Area. You can counteract this status effect, which causes the Limit Break bar to charge more slowly, by purchasing some Hypers.
The last doorway on the left leads to the Barracks (pictured in the screenshot below). Speak to the Shinra Soldier in the corner of the first floor to gain entry to the “Respectable Inn”. Speaking to each of the Soldiers as well as the ghosts in this area will allow Cloud to explain certain aspects of the game to both the listener and to you as a player. This includes more advanced information about Limit Breaks, Materia and combat in general. There is also an Enemy Skill Materia on the ground in the corner.
Proceed to the second floor of the Barracks to find a Mind Source, a Luck Source and a “1/35 Soldier” lying on the ground. The 1/35 soldier has no actual use and is one of the many superfluous items in the game. No point in leaving it behind. Finally, on the third floor, you will find a Power Source and Guard Source on the ground. Exit the barracks and proceed west down the main roadway, past the elevator and the small road leading south, and into the other side of Junon.
Once you reach the opposite side of Junon you will notice a group of soldiers, sailors and guards running ahead of you - your teammates dressed up in disguise. The first doorway leads to the Shinra Member’s Bar where you will find the last three Turks (but there is nothing else to do in this room).
The next door to the left leads to the Junon Inn. You can save at the Save Point here but there is no point in resting because you have not engaged in a battle since your last rest in Lower Junon. There is a Materia Store on the second floor of the Inn where you can buy Fire Materia, Ice Materia, Lightning Materia, Earth Materia and Poison Materia. On the third floor you will find your first Item Store that specializes in the sale of Accessories. The two accessories being sold (Silver Glasses and Headbands) do not necessarily warrant the steep prices (3,000 gil) but you can purchase them if your goal is to collect all of the weapons, armor and accessories in the game.
One door to the left leads to another Barracks. There is a Speed Source on the first floor and another “1/35 Soldier” on the second floor. The last door to the left is another Weapon Shop that contains worse weapons than the Weapon Store on the other side of Junon so don’t waste your time. Continue to the northwest in the direction that your team ran to continue the story.
Now it’s time to play Simon Says. Press the buttons as the captain shouts out each command as quickly as you can. You will get 10 points for each move you successfully complete but no points when you are turning right or left. Make sure that you are alway facing the proper direction or you will not receive any points even if you complete the correct command. The prizes that you receive will be based on President Rufus’ mood gauge and are as follows:
Heidegger will give Cloud the reward once the demonstration is complete. Follow Rufus and Heidegger and jump on the Cargo Ship with the rest of your team once you are back in control of Cloud. Make sure to equip Cloud’s Force Stealer if you were successful in obtaining it as the Force Stealer has double Materia growth which is great for speeding up the growth and levels of your key Materia.
The Cargo Ship will begin sailing to Costa del Sol but the story will continue part way through the journey.