Updated Title Publisher
Updated Title Publisher
Updated Title
Published Title Score Editor's Choice
Published Title Score
Table of Contents
Expand All

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII

Dead Dunes: An Introduction

Claire Farnworth

Aside from the general map, there is a maze of underground ruins to explore. You must complete the first two sections of the main quest chapter to gain access. The Dunes is home to some of the strongest monsters in the game and is definitely not a place you should visit at length until a few days into the game. In the latter days, one of the most powerful adversaries appears in the Giant’s Sandbox.

The Dunes is home to a large group of Bandits called Monoculus who scour the Ruins for treasure and the “Holy Grail” of treasure, wanted by the Order of Salvation among many others. The Holy Clavis is rumoured to have incredible power and only the Saint is rumoured to be able to wield it. The Bandits are led by a strong-willed woman who has organised them into an efficient group and focused them on seeking the Holy Clavis.

North Dead Dunes

The major settlement in the Dead Dunes is Ruffian, the bandit group Monoculus’ hideout. It has the usual plethora of shops but is also home to an item appraiser (for all those unappraised items you get from Lizards and Skeletons) who can identify some very nice items for you.

Certain areas are blocked off by sandstorms which must be turned off via a nearby monument. These monuments need a Pilgrim’s Crux to activate them. You can find these throughout the Dunes or in the Ruins.

If you see any Lizards scurrying around the desert, slay them for their tails and the occasional item.

To the north of Ruffian is Atomos’s Sands where the deadly Earth Eaters roam in abundance and a shrine lies. The Grave of the Colossi lies to the east, home to another shrine. Finally, the west is made up of the Dry Floodlands area and the Oasis Lighthouse. The Floodlands has another shrine and the Lighthouse has an NPC who has a quest for you as well as many items scattered around.

South Dead Dunes

The station lies at the heart of the Dunes and, though they aren’t marked on the map, has an Outfitters and General Store just outside its reaches. Most of the south is made up of the Giant’s Sandbox, a huge area populated by some sneaky enemies who don’t really look like much. Of these, the Desert Sahagin are enemies you should be wary of as they attack with speed and can pursue Lightning over a long distance.

There are three entrances to the Temple Ruins here as well as numerous Red Cactuar Stones for teleportation. If you see a suspicious black sphere, do not approach it until you are very late in the story (Day 12) onwards. This beast is Aeronite, one of the most powerful adversaries in the game.

Monster Location
Goblot Dead Dunes
Anubys Exterior areas 16:00 - 18:00
Meonekton Exterior areas 04:00 - 06:00
Skeleton Temple Ruins
Gremlin Temple Ruins, Shrines of Tablet
Cactair Oasis Lighthouse
Cactuar Desert
Gorgonopsid Desert
Schrodinger Temple Ruins
Desert Sahagin Desert
Reaver Highway
Gurangatch Giant’s Sandbox, Temple Ruins
Earth Eater Desert, Temple Ruins
No Comments
Guide Information
  • Publisher
    Square Enix
  • Platforms,
    PC, PS3, XB 360
  • Genre
    Action RPG
  • Guide Release
    8 April 2014
  • Last Updated
    7 December 2020
  • Guide Author
    Claire Farnworth

Share this free guide:

The world has moved on. Time is no more. People do not age but they can still die from accidents or murder. And so, the population has slowly dwindled and there remains only four main areas left in the world. Lightning awakes from her crystal slumber with one task: to save as many souls as she can before the world ends in thirteen days.

Join us as we scour every corner of Nova Chrysalia from the Wildlands to the Dead Dunes and back again.

In the main guide:

  • A complete guide as to the best way to complete each main quest, side quest and in what order.
  • Complete side quest and Canvas of Prayers sections.
  • Full Ultimate Lair walkthrough with optimal strategy for Ereshkigal.
  • Aeronite strategy and video.
  • Trophy and achievement guide.
  • HD videos with commentary.

Get a Gamer Guides Premium account: