In Ni no Kuni II, the kingdom builder is basically a huge living skill tree that has threads running through the entire game. While it’s possible to make your way through the game without ever using it, you’ll benefit a lot from putting some time and effort into the kingdom of Evermore. You’ll get access to Evermore about a third of the way through the game, at the start of Chapter 4. Before getting started, make sure to read through our Ni no Kuni II kingdom building guide to get a head start.
General Kingdom Building Tips
Check In On Your Kingdom
The trip doors make fast travel really easy in Ni no Kuni II. Make frequent use of the feature to travel back and check in on your kingdom, bank any money in your coffers, and grab items your citizens have foraged. Leaving these at the cap amount is a waste, so check in frequently!
Expand Your Coffers
Speaking of coffers, focus on expanding them to avoid hitting that cap too often. You start off with a maximum amount of 5000. By level 6, storage capacity increases to 300,000 KG, and there are additional levels beyond that.
Gather Your Citizens
One of the most essential parts in building a kingdom is having people to manage the day-to-day. Citizens are obtained through sidequests. Under the sidequests menu, any quests with a smiling face icon next to them will reward a new citizen. Their stats can also be seen on the right hand side, so if you are looking for someone with particular skills, you can see what you are after here.
To obtain these side quests, occasionally check back in on the towns you visit throughout the game. At certain story points, and sometimes after completing other side missions, new ones will be available, indicated by a white circle with a blue exclamation point on the map.
Assign the Right Citizens
Some citizens are better suited to certain jobs than others. Try to make sure that any citizen you assign to a building has a yellow star that says “suitable” when you assign them. Some will also have certain specific skills and traits required for research. It’s not too complicated, and it’s only late in the game that you’ll start running into major limitations based on skills of assigned people. If you’ve been collecting citizens as you move forward in the game, this barrier shouldn’t present much of a problem.
Leveling Up Citizens
Citizens of Evermore can gain IQ in their areas of expertise by leveling up. Ni no Kuni II isn’t really clear on how to level up citizens in Evermore, but it’s fairly easy to do. In the Kingdom Management menu, click on Citizens and find any with a blue arrow next to their picture. Press the Options button to level up the citizen, giving them a boost to IQ. The game won’t tell you when you have citizens to level up, so check back here often.
Foraging for Items
Some buildings don’t allow you to research anything. Most of these are for gathering items. As you level them up, additional items will become available to be gathered automatically by citizens assigned to that facility. These are useful to build initially, but don’t focus on leveling them up until later in the game. There are additional research areas that will help with this.
Leave Your Game On
Have to run out somewhere for a moment? Time to eat dinner? Sitting down to write a guide on kingdom building? Don’t turn off the game! Collection of KG and items is based on time passed in-game. If you turn off your PS4 or put it into rest mode, you won’t earn anything. Leaving the game on allows you to fill up your coffers and stores proportional to your per hour earning rate of each thing.
The buildings listed below are ones that will most impact your Ni no Kuni II gameplay experience outside of Evermore. There are certain buildings you’ll want to target earlier than others, as they offer discounts on construction and research, as well as earning you more Kingsguilders in the long run.
Ni no Kuni II can be played at the player’s discretion, so many of these are personal preferences that I found helped my game. If you see additional research options that aren’t on this list, it doesn’t mean they are bad. Research whatever you think will most help with how you want to play Ni no Kuni II, but keep the following options in mind.
Institute of Innovation/Institute of Higher Innovation
You won’t be able to get these buildings until you reach kingdom level 2 and 3, but I wanted to highlight them early as two of the most important buildings in your quest to build up Evermore. These buildings have research that can significantly reduce construction and level-up costs of buildings and reduce time and money costs of research. Once you can build these, drop everything else and focus on getting all of the research done here.
Goodfellows Inn/Evermoria Gardens/Symphonium
Three more buildings you won’t get until later in the kingdom building process, but they each give a hefty increase to influence, which increases your KG per hour earn rate. Make better use of your time by building these as soon as you can.
The Explorer’s Guild is all about exploring the world, finding more items, and doing it all more quickly. Most of your game time will be spent exploring the world, so get to work here in order to make every second of that exploration more valuable.
Walk around the overworld faster. You’ll want to get this one as quickly as possible. Luckily it’s basic level 1 research, so it’s easy to pick up fast.
-Store More Stuff
Both of these abilities let you store more stuff. The items foraged from your kingdom go into a bigger box before capping out. Just like with the coffers, this is useful in making sure you aren’t wasting resources by hitting the cap.
The barracks is where you’ll gain additional abilities and bonuses for your troops in skirmishes. Most of these are smaller bumps, but they can help to turn the tide and are worth getting if you plan to focus any energy into this facet of the game (you will need to do at least a few of these during the campaign, and there’s one particularly tough one near the end).
-Advanced Shock Tactics
Give yourself an edge in skirmishes by researching this one. It’s not a big game changer, but it can really help in those clutch moments.
Kind of like the faster walking one, this is really a no-brainer research option. Go into every skirmish with more maximum might than you would otherwise.
If higgledies are your thing, look no further! Craft new higgledies, level up existing higgledies, and live your best higgle-life. You don’t have to focus on this, but it does make battle much easier to have the right kind of assistance from these little creatures.
-Cook Great Higgledies for Less
Higgledies are cooked up, and if you don’t want to spend quite as much in an effort to create them, this bit of research drops the cost.
Higgledies can be leveled up by feeding them various items. Research these options to increase the experience gained per item fed to them. Don’t waste items leveling them up before getting this done.
If you want new and better higgledies, you’ll have to know how to cook them up. Researching higgledy cookbooks will expand the options of higgledy creation that are available to you.
Dreamer Mazes are yet another optional facet of Ni no Kuni II, but if you intend on delving into them, you’ll want to invest in research at the Dimensional Lab. These facilities have a variety of options that make diving into these dangerous mazes just a little bit easier and more rewarding.
-Safer Dimensional Delving
The danger level in Dreamer Mazes will increase more slowly. For every increase in danger level, enemies’ levels go up by 5. That makes things significantly harder, particularly in some of the later, longer mazes. Getting this will keep things safe for longer, allowing you to collect the powerful items scattered around.
-Orb-Smashing Avoidance/Orb-Drop Doubler
You’ll need orbs to either drop the danger level or unlock chests for powerful items. These two research points allow for more orbs to come out of smashing items and from killing enemies. It’s a bad feeling to reach a chest and realize you are four orbs shy of the requirement, so grab these to have more than enough orbs.
To make Dreamer Maze’s a little easier, detectors will locate nearby doors, chests, idols, and other items in the mazes.
Who can say no to more experience? The first one (more experience from battles) is most essential, but you can also earn more experience from skirmishes, for citizens, and for reserve party members by leveling this facility up.
Let Lofty help! The Cathedral will allow you to research options that give Lofty a boost in battle. He’ll toss you more orbs and generally be far more helpful.
More money, HP/MP balls, and items, along with the ability to add some medicine mixing knowledge to the goods for sale at the general store. If you want improved battle rewards, this is the place to go.
No Wrong Way to Build a Kingdom
Remember that this Ni no Kuni II kingdom building guide is full of general guidelines to get you started, but there is no wrong way to build your kingdom. If you’d rather focus on item foraging first, go ahead and level up your farms, mines, and hunting lodges. If you want to kit our your ship at the shipyard even though an airship is just around the corner, feel free. Want the best gear? Level up the outfitters and weapon workshop each to level 4. How about a focus on spells in battle? Evermore Spellworks is going to be your go-to.
Kingdom building might be just a single facet of a multifaceted game, but it’s the backbone that ties each piece to everything else, so knowing and understanding how to build and run Evermore is crucial. If you want more information on what the Symphonium does, we’ve got the secret behind the mysterious Songbook Pages.
Don’t miss our review of Ni no Kuni II, which we called a near-perfect RPG.