The story of the hunter Ochette in Octopath Traveler 2 begins with a difficult questions, which is whether she should befriend a malamaowl or lajackal as her first animal. Juvah, her mentor and the beastling village and island guardian, offers her a choice between the two. This ally will then stick by her side as a character she can summon with Provoke at any time in battle, and it proves quite helpful! But which one do you choose?
What are the benefits of deciding to befriend either the malamaowl or lajackal for Ochette in Octopath Traveler 2?
Essentially, each animal is a “safety” animal. When you summon a creature with Provoke in a fight as Ochette, you’ll see in the list what type of damage they’ll deal. It could be single-target or multi-target AOE. It could deal physical, weapon-type damage or elemental magical damage.
The malamaowl and lajackal in Octopath Traveler 2 cover two bases for Ochette. The lajackal, who ends up being named Akala, deals weapon damage. It is guaranteed to hit one of a single opponent’s weapon weak points. This serves to both reveal one of the foe’s weaknesses and to always deal one damage to their shield. Meanwhile, the malamaowl deals a magical attack to one foe to an element it is weak against. Again, this reveals a weakness and knocks off one shield point.
So which animal should I have Ochette befriend in Octopath Traveler 2?
Okay. So, I picked Akala. I thought the character was cute, I figured it’d be more useful to me to get a guaranteed weapon weakness reveal, since all of the characters can use weapons, but not everyone will always be guaranteed magic users, and it seemed like I was encountering a lot of enemies who had lots of weapon weaknesses, but few elemental ones.
And it did work for me! Especially since a lot of the monsters Ochette can end up capturing during the game deal AOE magical elemental damage. (Getting a great magic ability for no MP cost is a godsend.)
However, after spending so much time with Octopath Traveler 2, I’d say deciding to have Ochette befriend Mahina the malamaowl would be the wiser choice. Magic can get expensive, and it’s a free, guaranteed break magical attack.
But again, both allies are very good, cute animals, and each one will serve Ochette well as a BFF as you play.
Octopath Traveler 2 is available for the Switch, PS4, PS5, and PC. A demo is available.