The Zodiac Spear is infamous, and with good reason - getting it was always a nightmare.
It was such a nightmare obtaining this, the best weapon in Final Fantasy 12, that the developers made a point to switch up its location for The Zodiac Age, the new PC and PS4 HD remaster release of the game that in many ways is a complete do-over with major structural changes to the game and its gameplay systems. The changes made are smart and we really liked this version of the game as a result - but that doesn't mean getting the Zodiac Spear any easier. Oh, no.
The whole game is quite the opposite in fact: it's a difficult and complex affair, one which we've already put together a list of detailed The Zodiac Age tips for.
In The Zodiac Age the Zodiac Spear is more reliably accessible, but various changes to the gameplay systems of FF12 mean that it's a little less overpowered and ridiculous than it was - and it also can no longer be obtained relatively early in the game but instead is strictly reserved as a late-game item. With all that noted it is still worth a look, since it is hands-down the best weapon in the game.
Here are the things about the changes you need to know, especially if you're an FF12 familiar who knows all about the complicated and convoluted way you got the Zodiac Spear before:
The Zodiac Spear can only be equipped by the Uhlan job.
This one has pretty obvious implications thanks to the more rigid way in which the International Zodiac Job System handles weapons and other equipment - where anyone could use it before, in The Zodiac Age you'll need to be the correct class. If you don't have a character with the Uhlan as your first or second job choice, there's no point in sweating to get this weapon.
There are two methods of getting the Zodiac Spear.
One is ultra-tedious, and one will lock you out of other items in return. We'll explain both below, but think hard before taking up the latter.
The Zodiac Spear requires the Strongest Halberd License to use.
Again part of the universal job system changes to The Zodiac Age, you'll need a specific license to equip your Uhlan job character with the spear - make sure you have it.
FF12 veterans will remember the Zodiac Spear chests.
This stuff is gone. You can open any chests you like - it won't damage your chances of getting your hands on the Zodiac Spear.
Zodiac Spear Locations: Rare Hunt Club and Henne Mines
So, as mentioned above the Zodiac Spear can be grabbed from two places. Let's break that down.
Henne Mines Zodiac Spear chest drop
There's a chest in the Henne Mines that contains the Zodiac Spear, in a location near to the Zodiark. This sounds simple, right? Were it so easy...
Here's the catch: the chest in question only has a 1% chance of spawning. Every single time you enter the area it has a chance of spawning, but it's a minuscule chance. You might stumble on it first time or you might have to leave and re-enter the area hundreds of times in order to 'farm' the chest spawn and hope it appears. This is the tedious method of getting the spear mentioned above, but once the chest spawns you're guaranteed a Zodiac Spear without any other adverse consequences.
Rare Hunt Club Zodiac Spear reward
The second method of getting the Zodiac Spear is far simpler, but it will require some work on your part and it will require you to make some sacrifices. It involves the Hunt Club, a major side quest line you unlock as you progress in the game.
Once you've had your run-in with Cid at the Draklor lab, you'll then be able to undertake this quest line. To do so, go to the Hunters' Camp that's on the Phon Coast. Chat to the Huntmaster and tell him you're a bird of prey, and then you'll be given a special hunt. Complete that mission, then return and turn the quest in.
You'll now have access to 30 all-new hunts for special monsters on top of all the hunts you had before. Each time you complete one of these hunts you'll earn a trophy, and the Bangaas will sell you back all-new, rare items in exchange for trophies and gil. This is the catch: you have a total of 30 trophies, but everything they sell totals far more trophies than that. The Zodiac Spear is their most expensive item, and by taking it you're backing out and missing out on many other items, including the very versatile Genji Gear.
Whatever you choose, you at least now have two chances to get the Zodiac Spear and don't have to worry about random chests in the world. The question is - are you willing to trade the time or the chance at other gear to get it? That's up to you.