Bravely Default 2: How To Beat Marla

Quick Links

  • Marla’s Strengths & Weaknesses
  • Marla’s Attacks
  • Battle Strategy
  • Recommended Party

So you’ve managed to make it to Marla, the owner of the Phantom Asterisk. Phantoms are cunning assassins, and Marla is no different. Bravely Default 2 can be quite the tricky game, so if you go into Marla’s battle arena unprepared, you are sure to end up dead.

Marla, like Bravely Default 2's other bosses, will put up one heck of a fight when you encounter her. Marla can deal an incredible amount of damage to her victims, but she is quite the paper towel on the defence.

Marla’s Strengths & Weaknesses

VulnerabilitiesResistancesImmunitiesAbsorbs
  • Light
  • Spears
  • Dark
  • Daggers
NoneNone

Marla’s defences are seriously lacking. She doesn’t have many weaknesses, but she also lacks resistances. You could smack her around with just about anything and probably do alright. Still, you will want to try and target her with Light magic as much as possible.

Marla’s Attacks

AttackEffect
Become LightningMarla increases her Physical and Magic attacks by 25%.
BP UpMarla increases her BP by 1. Marla will use this as a counter against Magic attacks and Healing magic.
Dream Within A DreamMarla attack a single target 3 times.
Recurring NightmareMarla deals physical damage to a single target. If this attack inflicts lethal damage, Marla immediately gets another turn.
ShadowstepperMarla deals damage to a single target, Marla will use this as a counter against Physical attacks.
ShroudMarla deals Dark damage to a single target.

Marla’s moveset is heavily focused on offence. She has no way to regain her health and she has no way to increase her defence. Every aspect of her kit is tailored to killing you or buffing herself so she can kill you faster.

This is made even worse as she goes through her phases. She can easily one-shot a party member once her health has dropped low enough, making her terrifyingly deadly. Her counters also make this fight especially difficult.

Shadowstepper more-or-less invalidates all your physical damage dealers, so you are going to want to focus on dealing magic damage. This does mean you are going to have to deal with her triple-BP turns more often, however.

Battle Strategy

Since Marla is a single-target monster, you want to exploit that by having a powerful tank absorb all the damage. A Vanguard can work here, but really, you want to bring along a Shieldmaster. With a combination of Defender of the People and Reprisal, a Shieldmaster can protect your whole team, and then counter all of Marla’s high-damage attacks. Essentially, Marla will kill herself. This counter doesn’t trigger Shadowstepper either, which is a nice bonus.

The next issue is Marla’s buffs. She will buff herself with Become the Lightning, which can stack up if you let her cast it without an answer. In addition, she is buffed substantially when she progresses through her phases.

The best way to deal with her is with a Freelancer’s Square One ability, which strips her of her buffs. Alternatively, you could use a Thief to steal her buffs, but this is substantially slower – you could easily lose before you get an opportunity to strip them all.

Because her damage is so high, you will need a healer. You have two options here, a White Mage or a Red Mage. Both work wonders since you only need to heal a single target thanks to Defender of the People. With a White Mage, you can exploit Marla’s Light weakness, however.

The final piece is dealing consistent damage. You don’t want to be dealing any Physical damage in this fight, so a Spiritmaster is probably your best bet here. With access to potent Light spells like Banishra and Holy, you can quickly burn Marla down.

Recommended Party

The ideal party for this fight would be Shieldmaster, Freelancer, White Mage, and Spiritmaster. You can Sub-Job to your liking. You will want to make sure Shieldmaster is packing as much defence and HP as possible, but outside of that, this is a pretty straightforward brawl. Tank, Strip, douse in holy light – simple as that.

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