'Final Fantasy 15' Combat Guide: Tips & Tricks For Weapons, Blitz Combos, Breaks And Royal Arms To Inflict Maximum Damage In Battle

  • Playstation 4
  • Xbox One
  • Action
  • RPG
Final Fantasy XV finalized NA box art, front side.
Final Fantasy XV finalized NA box art, front side. (c) Square Enix

Now that Final Fantasy 15 is finally out, you’ll want to conquer every nook and cranny of its densely-packed world. While mastering elemancy (the art of magic and spell crafting ), obtaining all 13 Royal Arms and power-leveling will help you vastly, you’ll need to master combat in detail as well. Check out our guide to combat, including tips and tricks for using blitz combos, finishers, breaks and more, in Final Fantasy XV below.


This is an auto-attack activated by holding down circle or B to perform a plain combo that ends in a finale attack. Greatswords offer the longest Blitz combos and daggers offer the shortest, with everything else in the middle. Machinery weapons are one-shot only.

If Noctis is using a melee weapon, he can warp to an enemy with the first hit of his combo by holding L towards a locked-on target. This consumes no MP and closes the distance quickly.

There is a combo counter on the left side of the screen above the tech bar. This tells you how many successive hits you’ve landed. If you’re interrupted by anything, including damage from an enemy, your counter resets. Your allies and party members don’t contribute anything to the combo counter.


If you stop during a Blitz combo, there’s a period during which you can perform a Finisher, a powerful attack that may come with added bonuses. Release circle/B, then press it again during that Finisher window.

With most weapons, you can tell a Finisher opportunity is available when Noctis takes a step back. Swords, however, are an exception: you need to press the button right when the sword starts to phase out, as Noctis has his right arm outward.

Directional Attacks

Weapons that can perform Blitz combos can also perform directional attacks, which are triggered after the first hit of a combo. Tilt L while pressing/holding the attack button to perform a directional attack. The directional attacks for each weapon are different, and while all are available during Blitz, only the Swords Direction-Away attack and the Firearms Direction-Any attack are available as Finishers.


  • Direction-Away: Backflip. Can be repeated for a second backflip -> a warp attack forward into the enemy.


  • Direction-Toward: Increases combo’s speed and replaces slow horizontal second and third swings with faster vertical second swing

  • Direction-Away: Hold for up to three seconds then release to unleash a charged attack; Noctis will flash purple when his charge is full


  • Direction-Toward: Leap up, followed by diving down to attack small enemies

  • Direction-Sideways: Strike up to three times with sweeping hits that deal reduced damage but have a wider horizontal reach

  • Direction-Away: An evasive backflip that can be repeated once, finishing with a forward lunge into the enemy


  • Direction-Away: Step back and throw daggers at the enemy

  • Direction-Sideways: Sidestep in that direction and hold to keep repeating


  • Direction-Any: Dive in that direction while shooting but you must be locked on to target


  • Direction-Any: Throws your shield overhead at close-range directly forward, piercing through targets

Aerial Attacks

To remain airborne you have to be using either a sword or polearm, though you can attack in the air with any weapon that can perform a Blitz combo. You must also unlock the Airstep Ascension ability (and it’s a good idea to get the rest of that branch in the Combat Ascension tree).

You can only use a sword or polearm to perform the Death Drop ability, which lets you close the distance from far away without using as much MP as a warp-strike. In addition, if you learn the Osmostrike Ascension ability, aerial attacks that connect recover MP, making aerial strikes an important part of your repertoire.


A Blindside occurs automatically when you attack an enemy from behind. Party members get a damage multiplier of 1.5x when executing a Blindside. Blindsides work great with roll-dodging as part of a hit-and-run playstyle that makes the most of the Blindside damage bonus, which is especially good with a greatsword or pair of daggers.

Even better, the multiplier for Noctis’s Blindside attacks with daggers increases up to 2.0 when he learns the Stalker and Super Stalker Ascension abilities.


Warp-strikes are attack moves with powerful damage potential able to stop enemies in their tracks. You receive 1 AP each time you defeat an enemy with warp-strikes.

You perform a warp-strike by hitting triangle/Y while locked on. Each warp costs 30 MP and can be repeated multiple times in a row by holding down the button.

A warp-strike’s damage is determined based on the distance between Noctis and his target. The farther the target, the greater the damage, up to a 4.0 multiplier. You can increase warp-strike damage multipliers through Warp Factor and Warp Factor II in Ascension (25 and 50 percent respectively). At short distances, the multiplier is less than 1.0 with a minimum of .5 if you’re right next to the enemy, but the Point-Blank Warp-Strike Ascension ability will eliminate this shortcoming.

Most important: Noctis is briefly invincible at the start-up of the warping animation. Ways to exploit this include flying through projectiles without taking damage, dodging in the air before learning Airslip, and maintaining your combo counter.

Breakage and Body Parts

Some larger enemies in Final Fantasy XV have distinct body parts called “appendages,” which includes the torso. You can cycle through an enemy’s body parts with R while locked onto it. Weapon attacks have the ability to “break” the enemy, with the word BREAK appearing onscreen after this happens.

If you “break” an enemy body part, you can get unique appendage drops, penalties to the enemy’s attributes, and other positive effects. Here’s what you should know to “break” your enemies:

  • Body parts don’t have their own HP. Whatever body part you target and do damage to, the damage is taken from the enemy’s total HP pool.

  • Each body part has a hidden durability stat defined as a percentage of the enemy’s max HP.

  • Most attacks deal an equal amount of damage (to HP) and breakage (depletion of durability). These two things are different and some weapons inflict more breakage than damage.

  • Breaks occur when the hidden durability parameter is reduced to 0 AND the attack used to do this is break-capable. Spells are not break-capable.

  • Since breaking a body part reduces either Vitality or Strength by a certain percentage, knowing what stat each appendage is linked to can help you strategically take out tough enemies. For example, if you reduce the Strength of an enemy that does massive damage, you’ll really be helping yourself out.

  • Certain weapons and a few specific attacks in certain weapon categories will grant breakage bonuses.

  • Break bonuses are handy, but don’t target a body part that’s constantly hard to reach. This will just drag out your fight.

Break-Capable Attacks

  • All Blitz finales, FInishers, warp-strikes and parries

  • Greatsword : Blitz stab, charged attack, aerial attack and Blitz initial hit

  • Polearms: Aerial attack

  • Machinery : Charged attack

Weapons With Break Power Bonuses

  • Hardedge (Greatsword): 1.8x

  • Rapier Lance (Polearms): 1.8x

  • Handgun (Firearms): 1.8x

  • Quicksilver (Firearm): 1.8x

  • Cerberus (Firearm): 10x

Attacks with Break Power Bonuses

  • Greatswords: Blitz initial (1.1x), Blitz stab (1.1x), Blitz finale (1.3x)

  • Polearms: Aerial attack (1.1x), Aerial Dive Attack (1.5x)

  • Machinery: Circular Saw (1.5x), Drillbreaker (1.3x)

Finally, for every attack you make, there is a hidden damage modifier based on both the type of weapon you use and the specific type of attack you brought to bear.

Royal Arms

We have a full Royal Arms guide available, but here are some small takeaways regarding the differences between standard weapons and the Royal Arms.

  • Noctis has a whole lot more forward momentum at longer distances when he begins a Blitz combo with Royal Arms. The initial strikes are also a little stronger than those of normal weapon types.

  • Royal Arms don’t do Finishers, though directional attacks are occasionally possible during Blitz combos.

  • Airstep attacks are exclusive to standard swords and polearms, excluding Royal Arms. No aerial MP recovery takes place when attacking with Royal Arms.

  • With minimal exceptions, no enemies are strong or weak to the Royal Arms, making all enemies 100% susceptible to damage from them. If you’re facing a foe with high resistances to standard damage types, bring the Royal Arms with you.

  • Boosts to Strength are more beneficial with most Royal Arms, because the boost to Strength is calculated once as a Weapon Power value and then factored in alone once more. For example, the Sword of the Father has an Attack of 141 and a bonus to Strength of 100. The Weapon Power value is Attack plus the bonus of 100 for 241. Then the bonus to Strength of 100 is factored in as well. That makes the Attack stat of the Sword of the Father 341.

  • Attack damage modifiers are lower overall when compared to that of standard weapons as a counterbalance to the high Attack stats and offensive output bonus.

  • Royal Arms deplete a percentage of your max HP with every attack that deals successful damage, except for parries. The loss can be very significant with warp-strikes. The HP reduction is proportional to the damage modifier of an attack, so the stronger the attack, the higher the HP “cost” of it. Watch your HP!

With these tips and tricks for mastering combat, you should be able to advance your combat past button-mashing and into the more strategic, controlled realms you’ll need to beat the toughest end-game and post-game bosses.

But wait, there’s more: don’t forget to check out the rest of our Final Fantasy XV guides listed below.

  • 'Final Fantasy 15' Review: Combat, Plot, Characters Create Something Flawed, Beautiful, Fantastic

  • Justice Monsters Five Rewards List: Every Item To Snag From The Pinball Mini-Game

  • Favorite Foods List: Complete Recipes, Stat Boosts & Effects For Noctis, Gladiolus, Ignis and Prompto

  • Outfits Guide: Attire Stat Bonuses And Buffs For Noctis And Allies’ Gear

  • How Many Chapters Are in 'Final Fantasy 15'? Tips For Pacing Yourself

  • Flying Car Guide: Here's How To Get The Regalia Type-F [VIDEO]

  • Ascension Tree Tips: 9 Must-Have Skills To Prioritize Early On
  • How To Fish In 'Final Fantasy 15' Skill Guide: Best Locations, Equipment And Bonuses To Level Fishing Fast

  • Full List Of Trophies And Achievements [NO SPOILERS]

  • Wait Mode Explained: How It Works And When To Activate It

  • Report Card: Finesse, Time, Offense And EXP Bonus Explained

  • Royal Arms Guide: Tips And Tricks To Master Combat

  • EXP Guide: How To Power Level Up Fast With Lodgings, Meals And Sidequests

Final Fantasy XV
Combat, Plot, Characters Create Something Flawed, Beautiful, Fantastic
Despite it's flaws, Final Fantasy XV is a milestone achievement: not just for being completed, but for being completed with polish, aplomb and love.
  • Engaging main cast of characters
  • Fun, fast-paced combat
  • A massive, beautiful world to explore
  • The Regalia!
  • Continuous updates have addressed some shortcomings of the initial release
  • Major aspects of the story feel rushed or absent, particularly toward the end of the game
  • Stealth sequences feel out of place
Join the Discussion
Top Stories