Tha MonkeyClan of the Angry Monkey (FFXI)
Enter the Burning Circle

Enter the Burning Circle
Submitted by sam on Mon, 07/25/2005 - 13:28.

In the furthest reaches and deepest dungeons of Vana'Diel lie portals to other-worldly arenas. These portals are called "Burning Circles" for their sinister fiery glow. Across their thresholds can be found some of the most notorious and evil monsters you will ever encounter. Dragons, leeches, demons, and all other manner of creatures dwell therein.

The battles that await you on the other side of the burning circles are terrifying, but can also be quite rewarding. Read on, to learn more.

What are BCNMs?

"BCNM" stands for "Burning Circle Notorious Monster". BCNMs are special battles fought in specific arenas throughout Vana'Diel. BCNMs are triggered when an orb is traded to a particular burning circle. These special battles are typically more difficult than standard battles, but they can have some spectacular rewards. Items such as Astral Rings or spells such as Utsusemi: Ni can only be obtained through BCNMs. Since the July 2005 update, many special items that were previously NM drops (such as Peacock Charm and Emperor Hairpin) can now also be obtained through BCNM fights. As you can see, BCNMs can not only be the best way to get an item you need, but also are a great way to earn money in the game.

BCNMs usually require special strategies that are specific to a given battle. Additionally, sometimes a particular job will be more useful in a BCNM than in another. You generally want to maximize your abilities against those BCNMs which have monsters weak to you. For example, if a BCNM has a large number of charmable mobs, it could be that a Beastmaster will do better with it. If a BCNM has skeletons, it could be that a Monk will be the key to success. Etcetra, and so forth.

Where are the Burning Circles located?

Most dungeon-type areas have burning circles. These circles are generally in special areas deep inside the dungeon. If you have completed your Dragon battle (mission 2-3), then you have already encountered at least one of the burning circles in the game.

The following table shows the burning circle arenas associated with each dungeon, as well as coordinates or instructions for finding them:

Dungeon Location BCNM Arena
Giddeus (F-12) Balga's Dais
Palborough Mines (H-10) on map 3 Waughroon Shrine
Yughott Grotto (K-6) on map 2 Horlais Peak
Quicksand Caves (D-4) on map 4 Chamber of Oracles
Ghelsba Outpost (F-10) Ghelsba Outpost
Fei'Yin (K-8) Qu'Bia Arena
Den of Rancor (D-4) on map 2 Sacrificial Chamber
Castle Zvahl Keep (G-7) on map 4 Throne Room

How do I enter a BCNM?

In order to enter a burning circle, you must first have a burning circle orb. These orbs can be obtained by trading Beastmen Seals or Kindred Seals to Shami in Port Jeuno located at H-8. Depending on the number of seals you trade him, he will give you different types of orbs:

Orb Seals Required BCNM Level Limit
Cloudy Orb 20 Beastmen's Seal Level 20
Sky Orb 30 Beastmen's Seal Level 30
Star Orb 40 Beastmen's Seal Level 40
Comet Orb 50 Beastmen's Seal Level 50
Moon Orb 60 Beastmen's Seal Level 60
Atropos Orb 30 Kindred's Seal No Level Restriction
Clotho Orb 30 Kindred's Seal No Level Restriction
Lachesis Orb 30 Kindred's Seal No Level Restriction
Themis Orb 99 Kindred's Seal No Level Restriction

What about ENMs?

ENMs or "Empty Notorious Monsters" are very similar to BCNMs. However, I have not yet fought any of these successfully, and will not be including them in this guide. If anyone else has any words of wisdom regarding these, feel free to write up something on them :-)

General BCNM Strategy

Generally speaking, if you treat BCNMs as special boss battles, you will find it easier. Enter the battle fully stocked on foods and medicines (bearing in mind that, if successful, you do stand to earn quite a bit of loot). You really don't want to skimp when it comes to these battles. They are quite difficult, and you do not want to waste all your seals.

The number one rule in all BCNMs is to keep your wits. Stay calm and be level headed. Some people turn the music down on their game to reduce the stress (the BCNM music can be a bit intense). Whatever it is, do what you need to in order to keep yourself focused and calm.

Dividing the loot

Before going into the BCNM (even before heading out to it). You will want to discuss how you are going to divide up the loot. Chances are you will be fighting alongside others and that everyone will feel entitled to some gain from the battle.

You are free to choose a distribution model you want, but generally speaking what seems to work is to have everyone who will be participating bring an orb themselves. Then, you play the BCNM as many times as you have orbs. Each person who trades an orb gets all of the drops from that battle. In the event that one (or more) battles fail, the items should be divided up fairly amongst those who did not get anything. Also, if you are among friends and need particular items, feel free to discuss before hand specifics you may need (e.g., someone leveling up Ninja may need Utsusemi: Ni, or a mage may need an Astral Ring).

If you are simply running through for profit, you can also designate people to sell the items and divide up the gil. Be very careful that everyone in the group trust those people who will be selling.

Old Picture!

That picture is old! That was like when we still used Terial's LS lol.

Old pic

Yep, it is old. I don't have any other pictures of the burning circle right now. I have more recent pictures of the BCNM battles inside... just not of the circle itself.

Plus.... it's a cool picture.

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