Final Fantasy XV has a short tutorial section which introduces the player into the game and explains general aspects of the gameplay. However, it has one major flaw - it only gives basic information, often not explaining the topic thoroughly, or even outright ignoring some of the aspects of gameplay. This chapter contains a list of tips that might come in handy. A detailed description of all of the aspects of the gameplay can be found in separate chapters of this guide.
1. Don't skip the tutorial section! At the start of the game you will have an option to play through a series of tutorial missions. It's worth it to complete them - they explain the most important aspects of the gameplay and allow you to experience the new combat system.
2. Consuming meals is crucial in this game. There's no hunger mechanic in the game, although a meal will strengthen the whole team, offering various bonuses to their stats. Characters can get a powerful boost to their health, damage dealt, or even have increased experience gain. Meals can be eaten in restaurants, as well as when camping in the wild.
3. Sleep is also a very important element of the gameplay. It's the only way to make use of the accumulated experience points in order to increase the levels of your characters. Your party can sleep in a tent (while camping in the wild) or rent a room in one of the outposts. You have to pay some Gil for the latter method, although it comes with a bonus to experience. If you managed to accumulate a lot of experience points, you should invest a hotel room with at least 1.5x experience multiplier.
4. Remember that aside from the main quests connected with the storyline there's also a huge amount of side activities. Side quests and monster hunts will allow you to acquire enormous amount of experience points and unique items. A detailed description of all of the side quests and monster hunts can be found in separate chapters of this guide.
5. The game is not all about combat. Aside from combat and exploration, the player can also spend time on fishing. Fishing spots are marked on the map with a special icon. The activity itself offers a rest from the combat-oriented gameplay and allows you to acquire cooking ingredients and unique treasures that can be sold.
6. Think twice before spending AP used to develop characters. You can spend them however you like, that's true, although you should take an interest in some of them at the early stage of the game. Those are, above all else, Roadrunning and Chocobump. The former will give you additional AP points for long travels via Regalia, while the latter is almost the same, but works when travelling with a Chocobo. A detailed guide about spending AP can be found in a separate chapter of this guide.
7. Don't sell all of the items! Most of the items can be sold without a second thought, although it's worth it to keep at least some of them. All of those can be used to strengthen spells (more on that in the chapter about magic), some are required to upgrade elements of equipment and some can even be traded to receive different goods. All of the "unique" items will be listed in a separate chapter of this guide.
8. Try to interact with everything that can be interacted with. Those can be books, recordings or radio transmissions. This will allow you to learn more about the world of the game and some information can have measurable benefits - like, for instance, unlocking a new cooking recipe for Ignis.
9. Save the game manually! There's an auto-save mechanism implemented into the game, although you shouldn't rely solely on it. You can end up in a situation where you have to spend several dozen of minutes running towards a place your party died at.
1. Exploration takes place both on foot, as well as using one of the transportation methods (Regalia, Chocobo). Using the fast-travel function of Regalia is tempting, although you should try to travel as much as possible on foot (or using a Chocobo). This way you won't miss hidden treasures, groups of monsters and various deposits used to acquire crafting materials from.
2. You have a fast-travel option available when travelling with Regalia. It costs a small sum of Gil, although it will transport you to the designated location. If you don't care about the time, you should travel the distance on foot. Doing so will allow you to discover a hidden treasure, or stumble upon a unique enemy. Additionally, you won't miss interactions between party members - both humorous and those more serious ones.
3. You can purchase items while traveling inside of Regalia, without the need to leave the car. This will allow you to replenish your supplies even when you forget to do it before departing.
4. Remember that the game uses day & night cycle. Majority of questing, traveling and monster hunting takes place during the day - those activities are easier to perform because of better visibility. Sooner or later, however, the time will come, and with it powerful enemies will appear on the map. During your first hours with the game you should avoid any contact with those foes and just sleep through the night.
5. Always travel to the local eatery when visiting a new town or outpost. Those places are marked with a cutlery icon on the map. There you will be able to talk with the chef. When the "talk" option is activated, the map (surrounding the town/outpost you're currently at) will be updated with locations of treasures, camping locations, parking spots and various deposits.
1. Every encounter your party wins will be evaluated. You will be evaluated for Time, Finesse and Offense. Time refers to the length of the battle itself (the quicker you defeat the enemies, the better the mark will be), Offense is the amount of enemies defeated (you will get the highest mark each time you defeat all of the enemies) and Finesse is basically the "flashiness" - it goes with the amount of parries and blindsides you perform during an encounter.
2. There are two combat modes - active and wait. The first one is straightforward - the battle is always active - whereas with the second one the encounter is paused whenever your character stops moving. In wait mode you will be able to monitor the battlefield and carefully plan your next move. More on this topic can be found in a separate chapter ("Combat") of this guide.
3. Additionally, wait mode has a very important feature - it allows Noctis to use the Libra ability. The ability allows you to examine enemies. You have to stay still for the game to stop and then press and hold R1/RB (PS4/Xone) button while marking an enemy. After a short time you will be presented with a small window containing information about the enemy - his health and weapons/spells he is vulnerable to. You should use this ability whenever you run into a new type of enemy.
4. Remember that different weapons and spells work on different types of enemies, dealing increased (when the enemy is vulnerable to it) or decreased (when he is resistant) damage. Some enemies will receive increased damage from fire or dagger attacks, at the same time being resistant to all of the other sources of damage.
5. You should evaluate an enemy (or group of them) before engaging them in combat. If the enemies are several levels higher than your party, fighting them might be difficult (or sometimes impossible) or it will simply take too long to take them down to make it worth it for you.
6. You can sneak up on majority of enemies. Before the encounter starts, a red bar will appear on top of the screen. It represents the awareness level of the enemies. Most of the enemies are completely oblivious of your presence - you can (and should) exploit it by, for instance, casting a powerful spell on a group of tightly packed foes, taking out a considerable amount of their health.
7. Don't forget to use the abilities of your allies. In order to do so, you have to press and hold L1/LB (PS4/Xone) button and then choose the ability you want with the d-pad. However, you won't be able to use them all the time - those abilities need some time to be usable again and they cost one or more segments of the tactical bar that can be seen on the left side of the screen.
8. Remember that once your ally hits an enemy with his ability, you will get a prompt on the screen, allowing you to "join" the attack. If you press the attack button at the required time, your character will strike the same enemy, often dealing huge damage in the process.
9. Experiment with different abilities of your companions. Those offer various effects and will be useful while dealing with different types of enemies. Some will be extremely effective against single and powerful foes, whereas others will be more suitable against large groups of weaker enemies.
10. Don't forget about Noctis' special ability, Warp. It allows the protagonist to teleport over a short distance, or to attack the enemy and deal substantial damage - the longer the distance Noctis travels, the higher the damage dealt. Additionally, the ability allows you to quickly teleport to (by holding the button) an elevation - the character will be protected from most enemies and will instantaneously regenerate MP.
11. Monitor the MP of Noctis. Those points are required to use the Warp ability. If the MP bar (located underneath the health bar of the character) is empty, Noctis will enter the Stasis state, severely reducing his mobility and preventing him from using his special ability. MP points will start regenerating after a few seconds have passed since the last Warp, while hiding behind an obstacle (more on that in the next bullet point) and will be instantaneously refilled upon warping to a special location.
12. If Noctis lost a lot of health points and/or the MP bar is empty, you can hide behind cover to start regenerating both of those quickly. You just need to stand behind an obstacle (like a large stone) and press and hold a button that appears on the screen. Noctis will hide behind the obstacle and will quickly regenerate both health and MP.
13. Don't forget to use items during combat. Potions, Elixirs (restoring health and MP) and various items removing negative status effects can be a lifesaver during a difficult encounter.
14. Try to attack vulnerable body parts of enemies. Those can be, for instance, horns that can be shattered. This way the enemy will be severely weakened and you will have a chance to acquire a rare resource. More on this topic can be found in the chapter about combat.
15. If the fight does not go your way, run! You can see a red circle on the map - it symbolizes the arena you fight with the enemies on. If you manage to leave the said circle, the encounter will end and the enemy will stop chasing you. Note that the enemies will regenerate health once you leave the arena, although it is still better than dying.
1. At first glance the magic system doesn't look that appealing - only 3 types (fire, ice, lightning) of spells to choose from. Wrong! While creating spells you can add one of the items from your inventory to the "mixture". This will give a spell additional properties - multicasting, the possibility to inflict a foe with a status effect, or simply increasing the power of the spell. More on this topic can be found in the chapter about magic.
2. If you are near a raw element deposit (marked with a symbol of fire, a snowflake and a lightning bolt), don't ignore it and travel there to replenish supplies. Thanks to that you will be able to create powerful spells, often turning the tides of an encounter.
3. Remember to constantly craft spells and refrain from keeping your "elemental containers" full. If one of the containers of your party is full (99/99), use those points to create a spell and empty the container. This will give you access to a new spell and allow you to draw power from future raw element deposits.
4. Think before casting a spell - it can harm your allies as well. Your companions will take only a small fraction of the damage you deal to enemies, but they will still be vulnerable to the negative status effects that come with it - like, for instance, poison or burning. Those effects can cause more harm than the damage dealt to the enemies with the spell itself.
5. Remember that your companions can also use spells. Even if you don't want to "waste" gear space of your character, you can still give crafted spells to your party members.
1. Select equipment in accordance to your own style. If you aim to deal the highest possible damage (and becoming a glasscannon-type of a character) and you are good at avoiding enemy attacks, you can ignore items that increase the health and defense of your character. However, remember not to focus too much on the damage, as some enemies will sooner or later hit you - it's better not to die from a single hit.
2. Remember to equip items on other party members - encounters are won thanks to their efforts as well. The stronger your party is, the higher the chances to win an encounter.
3. Don't forget about upgrading equipment. If you stumble upon a weapon with a cross/plus icon next to its name, it means that it's upgradable. You have to travel to Cid, speak with the man and he will inform you what item will be needed to enhance the piece of gear. Doing so will significantly increase the power of a weapon.
4. Try to visit all of the shops in every city you travel to. You can find new elements of equipment there, often way more powerful than the pieces your team will be currently using. Don't forget to sell unneeded items there to earn some Gil.
5. Remember to replenish supplies. Healing Potions and MP-recovering ones, potions removing one (or all) negative status effects from a character - those are the items that you should have in your inventory all the time.