The wait is finally over – Octopath Traveler II is here, and it’s just as vibrant as the original! But with a new set of characters and stories to uncover, it begs the question who are the best starting characters in Octopath Traveler II?
If you’re no stranger to the complexities of Octopath Traveler, perhaps my previous question is an unnecessary one. However, for those unfamiliar with the game, starting with the best character is crucial.
Who has the best opening story? Which character will make combat easier? Who has the best Path Actions? All these questions and more can make starting a new game daunting, to say the least. To cut through that noise, let’s find out who are the best starting characters once and for all!
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All Octopath Traveler II Starting Characters
Before I reveal who are the best starting characters, we need to take a look at each of the eight travellers vying for our attention.
If you always play as a mage in an RPG, Osvald is the man for you – he’s a powerful magic user who has vengeance on his mind. Able to see enemy weaknesses, Osvald is fantastic on the battlefield, though his magic does use a lot of SP (aka mana).
Moreover, Osvald’s opening story is much longer than other characters’, which can make the opening chapters feel quite sluggish.
A man of the cloth, Temenos is far from your typical clergyman; not only does he question blind devotion, but he also uses magic to deal enemy damage and heal allies. His Talent, Moonlight Judgement, is especially handy during nighttime battles.
Temenos has an intriguing starting story, steeped in mystery and lies. However, his character isn’t exactly charismatic and sometimes feels a bit too pompous.
Anyone here like rogues? Then Throné is your woman! Her daggers cut with sharp precision, and her ability to steal whatever items she desires is a brilliant way to bolster funds.
But there’s also the allure of her opening story, one in which she longs for freedom only a new life can offer; the trope isn’t original, but that doesn’t make it any less fun to play. Consequently, Throné offers a balanced opening experience for all players.
Ochette is an interesting starting character. Despite her starting location being better connected on the map, her talents aren’t nearly as useful as other characters’, such as Throné or Osvald.
Yes, Capture does allow her to catch and later use animals in battle, but she’s open to a lot of physical damage from enemies. Her story also feels tired and lacklustre compared with others, though the scenery is much more vibrant than the frozen isles of Osvald’s.
Castti is another starting character that relies on an overused trope to reel us in, and while her story is one of my least favourites, what you gain by playing as Castii is undeniably handy. She’s a healer; as an apothecary she can lend aid when you need it most.
Sadly, she requires a lot of ingredients to do so, which can be difficult in the beginning. Still, her Inquire Path Action is great for learning extra tidbits of information from local NPCs.
A lot of players have said Hikari is a great starting character, and for good reason: he’s a warrior. This means he has a lot of health to spare, and deals heavy damage in battle, both of which are incredibly useful for unexperienced RPG players.
However, compared to other starting characters, his Path Actions and Talent pale in comparison – it’s great Hikari can gain XP by challenging NPCs, but when Throné can steal valuables, Osvald can mug NPCs, and Castti can gain information, getting more XP doesn’t seem as invaluable.
Being able to purchase items from NPCs early on is super useful, as is being able to hire NPCs to fight alongside you. Nevertheless, Partitio is best as a support character rather than your starting one, especially for newbies.
Partitio provides a challenging introduction because he isn’t as powerful as other characters, like Hikari. Still, as far as intriguing stories go, Partitio has that in spades.
Similar to Partitio, Agnea is another character better suited to a support role. This is because she lacks a lot of power that other starting characters have, and while she can bolster allies’ skills, this ability is pretty redundant when fighting alone.
Does that mean you should write her off? No. Agnea presents a challenge that, for us veteran RPG gamers, is all part of the experience.
The Best Starting Characters In Octopath Traveler II
Although there are certain starting characters who will ease you into the game, the decision on who to start with is ultimately yours; there’s no right or wrong.
My opinion on the best starting characters is based on what I’ve played thus far, and what they offer both returning and new players. With that in mind, let’s reveal our “winners”:
A lot of people would crown Hikari as the best of the best, but Throné has my heart. Able to Ambush or Steal (depending on the time of day) opens up a lot of closed off areas early on, and will yield more coins for spending.
Putting her skills aside, her location is ideal for recruiting Temenos, followed by Osvald, with this trio quickly becoming a force to be reckoned with.
I know I said his opening story is gruelling in terms of length, and he uses SP quickly, but Osvald is one of the best great starting characters in Octopath Traveler II.
His story is rich with angst, his desire to avenge his family all that keeps him going. Then there’s his daring quest to escape the shackles of his confinement, a task that seems nigh impossible despite all his planning. In short, Osvald’s tale is gripping from start to finish.
Due his sheer might, Hikari is one of the best starting characters, without a doubt. If you don’t normally play RPGs and/or haven’t played Octopath Traveler before, Hikari will help you navigate the opening portion of the game like a pro.
As for his story, it’s one of pride and devotion as the young prince tries to find a way to bring peace to his country.
That’s a wrap, folks! I know you might not agree with my final choices, but I hope you still find this guide useful.
If you want to discover other RPG games to play, might I suggest reading the 5 best 2.5D role playing games of 2023? Whether you decide to continue playing Octopath Traveler II, or find something new, I wish you well on your journey until we meet again!
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Emma has loved video games ever since she first saw Alex Kidd platforming across her TV screen. Since then, the 32 year old has dedicated an obscene number of hours to playing as many games as possible. When she isn’t obsessing over games, she spends her time honing her vinyl collection.