Final Fantasy 15 Leveling Strategy

Final Fantasy XV has finally come out and it is delivering on the kind of exciting new story and game play elements that have become the standard for this long-lasting and popular series. The reviews have been glowing and fans are falling in love with the game once again.

Learn how to unlock all secrets and hidden stories with this Final Fantasy XV Strategy Guide by Killer Guides. Complete walk-through, step-by-step levelling strategies, character progressions, combat tricks, side quests, hidden items, gear, gil making, and more are included in this detailed manual.

You can read my review here.

As always, Square has shaken things up a little bit with this release. They’ve added a cool new day and night cycle and the ability to camp and hang out with your party members. The new system that they’ve implemented for leveling is perhaps the biggest change. You will still gain experience points for fighting monsters and doing missions. The types of experience points you earn will vary depending on the monster.

However, the experience points for leveling will be calculated until you rest your party by camping or spending a little gold in a hotel. We’ll take a look at which of these experiences is the best and how to maximize them for the quickest leveling.

Understanding Day and Night Cycle

The use of the day and night cycle promises a unique experience for this game. Each cycle will be about one hour of real world time. Players are free to explore as much as they want during the day, riding in the car, attacking monsters, and gaining gold. Night is different and somewhat relevant to the night/day change seen in games like Minecraft or even as far back as Simon’s Quest.

Camping during the night will protect you from excessively powerful creatures and also give you time to rest and progress your characters. As a result, there’s no more 24-hour a day seven-days-a-week grinding in the Final Fantasy series.

Instead, you have to rest your character to keep them well-prepared for the demands of the game. Without regular sleep, your character will start to lose stats and abilities.

And, as mentioned above, you don’t really earn your experience points until you rest.

Now camping in the haven is the least expensive way to gain experience points. It costs you no money and lets you have fun with your party sitting around the campfire, cooking, and interacting.

Ignis, your driver and chef, will prepare these delicious meals. Some will increase your HP, buff your status, and offer other bonuses. Ignis will also increase their cooking skills over time to create better food.

Although camping is a major feature for this series, it isn’t the best way to increase your levels. Staying in a hotel could gain you an experience multiplier which will boost your levels quickly. For example, staying in a caravan boosts your experience by 1.2 times while a typical motel boosts it by 1.5 times. The luxurios one at Galdin Quay will boost your experience by two times, though it costs 10,000 gil.

ffxv camping

Early Game

As there’s no way that you can get that kind of gil so early in the game, your best bet is to stay at the caravan for 1.2 times boost and get the 1.2 times boost. Staying here costs only 30 gil and you can get a good food at the Hammerhead at a very cheap price as well.

This option is your best bet because it will allow you not only the chance to boost your experience quickly, but to also save up money for better weapons. The boost is a big deal even early in the game, either, as the basic monsters will only give you a small amount of experience points compared to monsters later in the game.


Since the mid-game, you have more change to experience the fun of camping, as you won’t have a chance to stay at the hotel/caravan much. Camping also gives Ignis time to become a better cook for when diner’s meals are becoming very expensive yet provide bad buffs. It is better to save up gil later in the game to invest in both great weapons and healing items.

Once you’re regularly beating monsters that drop heavy levels of experience points and completing several quests, you can then head over to the hotel and enjoy 1.5x exp bonus.

Post-game Content

For the post-game content, staying at Galdin Quay and get the double-experience points bonus once in a while is a good idea. That time you won’t need much gil anymore and this will give you the kind of boosts you need later in the game, as the experience points you’ll have collected will be large enough to make that expensive stay at the inn worth it.

All of this experience grinding will also make you a better Final Fantasy XV player. This will make it easier for you to have fun with the game and to explore its many areas in an engaging way. Clearly, the leveling system for this game promises an interesting experience that will challenge fans of the series.

galdin quay hotel

Betty / December 2, 2016 / Leveling

Character Progression with Ascension Grid and Ability Points

Noctis and his buddies’ combat capability can be improved through spending ability points (AP) on the Ascension grid located under “Ascension” menu. The grid comprises of interconnected ability nodes which are further separated into 7 categories including Stats, Combat, Techniques, Teamwork, Magic, Recovery, and Exploration.

Learn how to unlock all secrets and hidden stories with this Final Fantasy XV Strategy Guide by Killer Guides. Complete walk-through, step-by-step levelling strategies, character progressions, combat tricks, side quests, hidden items, gear, gil making, and more are included in this detailed manual.

You can read my review here.

When the ability node is unlocked, it becomes instantly active giving the permanent ability to the characters right away. Each ability requires a different amount of ability points. Mostly, an early ability requires a few amounts of AP and it needs a lot more once the grid moves further.

Players have a full freedom to unlock any ability nodes they wish. They can fully focus on a combat grid and improve Noctis combat ability alone. Or they can work on improving characters’ base stats, magic, or even spending points on an exploration grid for an additional way to gain AP from certain activities such as fishing.

Each build has its own pros and cons. Before investing in any ability, it is better to make sure that it is suitable for your play style. Although there are so many ways to get AP, a player is always in need of it.

Five Ways to Gain AP

AP can be acquired in mainly five ways: completing quests, leveling up, having the right answer in an interactive conversation, finishing an enemy with a specific attack, and successfully completing certain objectives in battles.

Completing quests and leveling up are quite straightforward. As soon as you finish certain quests, mostly the main quests, or leveling up while resting, a certain amount of AP is rewarded. They are the two steadiest ways to obtain ability points.

The interactive conversation is quite optional. Regularly, a player is required to select a specific dialogue answer. Choosing the right one rewards with AP or EXP. However, without a guide, there’s no way to know what the reward behind each answer is.

Finishing enemies with specific moves, including blindside attack, counter, and warp-striking give an additional ability point as a bonus. This method is the fastest way to get AP in FFXV so far. However, a player needs to know when to precisely finishing an enemy with one of these moves. A recommended strategy is to always look at the overall situation and swiftly execute the move before Noctis’ friends kill it, rather than focusing on a single enemy.

In some battles, especially in an early game, there are special missions that normally comes in a form of successfully execute this move x times. Completing them provide additional APs

official ascension grid

Betty / November 28, 2016 / Guide

Guide to Mastering Combat in FFXV and Their Mechanics


Weapon Switching

Noctis can equip 4 different types of weapon at the same time and switch it freely during a fight. Since each weapon in Final Fantasy XV is suitable to different situations and enemies, it is significant to change it on the fly and use the right weapon against the right enemy based on your circumstances.

Learn how to unlock all secrets and hidden stories with this Final Fantasy XV Strategy Guide by Killer Guides. Complete walk-through, step-by-step levelling strategies, character progressions, combat tricks, side quests, hidden items, gear, gil making, and more are included in this detailed manual.

You can read my review here.

Combos and Finisher

Pressing an attack button once leads to a single attack. Held or pressed several times triggers a combo attack and ends with a powerful flow dealing significant damage to enemies.

Combo attacks are available both on ground and in the air based on currently equipped weapons. A lance is great at aerial combos while the greatsword is good at AOE ground attacks.

Aerial attacks are very useful against a gigantic or flying enemy. Locking on an enemy is important while executing aerial combos. Warp-striking is an effective method to initiate aerial attacks. Aerial combos can be extended though certain abilities in an ascension grid.

While Noctis is in an animation of attacking, a player cannot cancel that attack and command him to do other things, including switching weapon, dodge, guard, and so on. So, be careful to only execute combos while an enemy is truly vulnerable.

If a combo is stopped in the middle for whatever reasons, a player can execute a finisher attack, which is another form of a powerful blow. To execute the attack, a player needs to press an attack button while Noctis is taking a step backward and disappearing his weapon.

Critical Hits

Any normal attacks, including combos, has an opportunity to strike a critical hit, dealing additional damage to enemies. Some weapon has a buff to increase critical hits chance.

Parry and Counter

Parry and counter are a key to mastering the combat in Final Fantasy XV. They can completely negate enemies’ attack while striking it back at the same time.

If any attack can be parried, an on-screen instructions will appear. When a defense button is pressed at the right time, Noctis parrys that attack leaving his foe to be vulnerable for a counterattack.

A counterattack normally deals 1.5x times damage and has a chance to trigger a link attack with any nearby partner, if he’s about to attack the same target.

Timing is a key to parry. If a defense button is pressed too quick or too slow, the attack will hit Noctis, even though holding the the button. The best time to parry is when the enemy is about to landing its attack.


Stealth Attacks

The red threat meter on the top of the screen appears when a player is about to be detected by enemies. Different enemies reach differently. Some might detect you faster or slower than the others. Normally, the enemies during an early game has a slow response whereas those in the late game can almost instantly attack a player.

As long as Noctis moves to a different direction as a monster’s, he remains stealth, performs a back attack, and even executes a one-hit kill.

Some humanoid enemies in a certain missions can be eliminated immediately though a warp-strike. The only condition to execute this assassination is to remain silence and attack an enemy stealthily.

Warping and Warp-Striking

Noctis can immediately teleport to any direction and destination he throws his weapon. Warping is a key combat mechanic to both dodge an enemy attack, and then attack it a second later. Holding the warp button while facing a warpable location, Noctic will immediately teleport to it and instantly replenish his MP.

Warping to a locked-on enemy can execute a “warp-strike”. It is a great way to initiate an attack. Warp-strike damage is based on a warping distance, the farer the greater. Additionally, it has a chance to stagger an enemy leaving them vulnerable.

However, it is not recommended to spam warping for two main reasons. First, warping greatly depletes MP and quickly leaving Noctis in a MP burst stage where he cannot restore his MP nor performing any moves that used MP. Second, warping can make Noctis too far away from his buddies leaving him a sole target to foes.
Warp-striking is also a great way to finish an enemy since it rewards an additional MP as a bonus.

ffxv warp strike

Blindside Attack

Attacking an enemy from behind triggers a blindside attack. It deals a critical hit with a chance to perform a link attack with any nearby buddy. The total damage of blindside combining a link attack is several time higher than a normal attack.

Blindside is especially useful when facing a big yet slow enemy. Simply move around and attack it from behind. This trick both deals significant damage to an enemy and avoids its fatal attack at the same time.


Some enemy’s part can be “break” by a certain attack indicated by a reticle. To break an enemy, lock on to it, move around, and attack at the “breakable” spot”. Doing so triggers different result based on each enemy. Mostly, it leads them into a negative and vulnerable stage.

Technique Attacks

Technique is a special attack executed by Noctis’ buddies, both permanent and guest members. Each technique has different usage and effects. For example, Gladiolus’ first technique, Tempest, can hit several enemies at once within his greatsword range while Ignis’s Mark allowing Noctis to attack all enemies at once one after another.

A technique attack can be used once a technique bar on the left of the screen is full. There are 3 gauges on the bar and each technique attack requires different amount of gauge. The tech bar refills continuously during the battle . As it is reset at the end of each fight, a player should not hesitate to utilize the technique once it becomes available.

Technique attacks can be triggered by pressing the L1/LB button, and then using the direction pad for choosing technique. Normally, the up directional button is for Ignis, left for Prompto, right for Gladiolus, and down for a guest party member.

More technique attacks can be unlocked from the technique tree (APs required) under the ascension grid.

ffxv technique gladiolus tempest

Armiger Ability

Armiger Ability is unlocked in Chapter 3 after Noctis acquires the Swords of the Wanderer, one of the royal arms. After obtaining the weapon, a new Armiger gauge appears in the bottom-left corner. It is filled overtime during the combat through attacking and defending.

When the gauge is full, press R1+L1 together to execute the Armiger ability, aka Noctis’ Limit Breaks. Upon activating the ability, Noctis’ stats will be increased significantly and completely changes his weapons to all available royal arms. The so called Limit Breaks stop when the gauge is empty.

Wait Mode

Wait mode is designed to help a player having a struggle in the game new real-time combat system or being in a pinch situation where the exact command is required. Upon activating the mode, everything will be immediately paused allowing a player to calmly analyze the battle and accurately command what to do next, including using an item, execute the technique attack, casting magic spells, and so on.

In addition, Noctis/Ignis can analysis enemy information, including weaknesses and strengths, through Libra. The ability is available once unlocked from the ascension grid.

Easy Difficulty

For a new player who really has a trouble dealing with enemies, an easy mode difficulty is available through the Pause Menu >> Difficulty. Activating the easy difficulty decreases enemies’ strengths as well as giving you more time in the wait mode.

Damage and Element

There are two types of damage in Final Fantasy XV: physical and magical. Physical damage mainly comes from weapon whereas the magical damage is from spells.

By making the combat more surreal and complex, there are also five elements in the game: fire, ice, lightning, dark, and ballistic. By default, elemental magic is elemental while ring magic is non-elemental. Weapons can be both: some deals non-elemental damage while some is imbued by an element such as a fire sword, an ice spear, and so on.

Certain enemies have weakness and resistant to different weapons. Some resists to a sword yet weak to a spear or vice versa. Enemy’s weaknesses are indicated by 3 different colors from the number of attack damage: white for neutral, orange for bonus damage, and purpose for decreased damage.

To find out enemy’s strengths and weaknesses, simply activate the wait mode and execute Libra. In order to slay an enemy as fast as possible, using the right weapon and element is necessary.

ffxv damage color meaning

Betty / November 26, 2016 / Guide

Regalia: Driving Mode, Control, Fast Travel, and Customization

Regalia is accessible after completing the first few quests in Final Fantasy XV. It is your main medium of transportation, especially for a long-distance travel. Noctis can drive it manually or ask Ignis to drive for him.

Learn how to unlock all secrets and hidden stories with this Final Fantasy XV Strategy Guide by Killer Guides. Complete walk-through, step-by-step levelling strategies, character progressions, combat tricks, side quests, hidden items, gear, gil making, and more are included in this detailed manual.

You can read my review here.

Driving Mode

The automatic driving mode is only available during the day from 6am to 7pm. A player can ask Ignis to drive to specific quest locations, parking spots, or even manually assign the destination. During the driving mode, a player can park Regalia at any time or even switch to a manual mode.

For the driving mode, Noctis will drive Regalia himself. It is pretty straightforward by holding R2 for an accelerator, L2 for brake/reverse, Square for U-Turn, and park the car with Circle. It is impossible to go off-road even with the manual driving mode.

Fast Travel

Fast travel to any destination (while in choosing a destination for Regalia auto-driving mode) is available after a player already drives to that location once. This can significantly decrease traveling time and help complete side quests faster and easier.

In addition, Noctis can fast travel back to Regalia or the last camping location at any time as well.


Similar to the real world, Regalia needs gas which can be filled up at any gas station. Running out of gas during the journey leaves two options: pushing the car to the nearest gas station or paying Cindy to tow it back to the Hammerhead (with the cost)

To prevent this kind of situation, it is better to refill fuel every time you reach a gas station. Or at least, make sure to have more than a half of fuel in a gas tank. Fuel gauge can be seen on the bottom left corner while driving Regalia.

Regalia can be customized by Cindy and even upgraded into a flying ship at a later point of the game.

ffxv regalia

Betty / November 25, 2016 / Guide

FFXV Guide to Weapons, Magics, and Royal Arms

Final Fantasy XV offers 7 types of normal weapon, two types of magic, and a special weapon belong to the royal family of Lucis Kingdom, royal arms. Each weapon has different attacking styles, combos as well as usage in a fight.

Noctis is the only character in the game being able to wield any types of weapon. In addition, he can wield up to four types of arms at the same time, while other characters can only hold two.

Learn how to unlock all secrets and hidden stories with this Final Fantasy XV Strategy Guide by Killer Guides. Complete walk-through, step-by-step levelling strategies, character progressions, combat tricks, side quests, hidden items, gear, gil making, and more are included in this detailed manual.

You can read my review here.

Normal Weapon

One-handed sword

The one-handed sword is a versatile sword suitable for all kinds of close-quarter combat. It is quick yet deals moderate damage. The one-handed sword is especially good at a hit-and-run style.

The one-handed sword combo involves a quick slash following by several slashes in a short period of time. Noctis can even flip back (Down analog stick + O while attacking), dodge, and execute an aerial combo.


The greatsword is a big two-handed sword dealing heavy damage to several enemies at once. Noctis can even charge it for a greater damage. However, the weak point of the sword is its slowness. Holding a consecutive greatsword attack can be easily countered.

A greatsword combo involves a quick initial vertical slash following by a wide horizontal AOE attack. A recommended way to use this weapon is to use it as an opening strike, including a warp-strike, and then swiftly change into other weapons. Otherwise, wait for a change to slash an enemy from its back or executing a charge attack.

Due to its weight and size, Noctis cannot airstep with a greatsword.


The lance is a long spear dealing average damage but at a middle range. The best part about lance is its aerial attack where Noctis can leap into a thin air and stabs enemies several times at once.

The lance combo involves around several stabbing and piercing. At the end of the ground combo, Noctis jumps into the air for aerial strikes. Similar to the one-handed sword, Noctis can backflip while attacking, and even charge for a full thrust.


The daggers excel at consecutive combo attacks. A wielder can swiftly slash endlessly and tirelessly. It is the quickest weapon so far but lacks damage. With a proper guide and usage, daggers user can quickstepping around the enemy and attacking at the same time.

Unlike other weapons, Noctis can continuously slash enemies without having to execute a combo finisher. By holding a down analog stick with an attack button, Noctis will start throwing daggers at an enemy until it is out of range.


Pistol is a long-range weapon allowing its wielder to shoot an enemy from a far. However, it does not have any combo attack comparing to other weapons. Noctis will just keep shooting in a targeted direction.

Pistol is a good choice when a player wants to play safe by striking for afar, dodge an attack, and wait for a chance to parry and counter. It has a chance to stagger an enemy allowing a user to attack freely without a fear of getting a hit back.


We do not know much about the shield at the moment. It should be good for defending and interrupt an enemy. It is possible that Noctis can equip a shield and a one-handed sword at the same time.


Machinery consists of several weapons such as a chainsaw, an auto-crossbow, a bio blaster, and more. Unlike other weapons, Noctis cannot warp-striking with any machinery.

Machinery usually deals heavy AOE attack and have a special attack. For example, an auto-crossbow can fire a barrage of arrows. A chainsaw can be charged. A bio blaster can emit poison gas. Noctis cannot attack with some machinery while he is in the air.

ffxv machinery


Elemental Magic

Elemental magic is three common magic in Final Fantasy series including fire, blizzard, and thunder. The big different in FFXV is that it comes in a form of crafted item.

In order to craft an elemental magic, a player needs to gather elemental energies (fire, ice, and thunder), combines them together, and puts it into a magic flask. Spell damage depends on the number of energy used while crafting.

In addition, consumable items can be used as a crafting material creating additional effects to that elemental magic including a healing cast, dual cast, and even a poison cast.

Elemental magic does not cost any MP but has a slight cooldown after usage. It also has various effects based on weather and environment condition. Casting fire on a dry glass can leave that area burned for a while. Blizzard can freeze an enemy. Using thunder on a raining day increases its damage output.

It is not necessary to save a magic flask in only a difficult fight. Since magic can deal great damage to a group of monsters at once, it is an ideal for leveling.

Ring Magic

Ring magic is only available to the wielder of the Ring of Lucii. It is a royal accessory passed down from King Regis to Noctis. The wielder can cast several powerful non-elemental magic such as the death spell.

Other spells from the ring magic have not been revealed yet. They are expected to be other famous FF spells such as ultima, demi, meteor, and even support magic like protect, reflect, haste, and so on.

ffxv death spell

Royal Arms

Royal Arms are special weapons containing a power from the previous kings of Lucis. (It was called phantom swords in the past) They were hidden in the royal tombs throughout the huge world of Eos. Royal arms are an important part of Final Fantasy XV story since the first half of the game revolves around obtaining these noble weapons.

Royal arms are more powerful than a normal weapon yet gradually consumes MP. The later part of the game, Noctis should be able to execute his ultimate attack by summoning several royal arms at once to protect and attack enemies at the same time.

Currently, there are 14 confirmed royal arms so far including:

  • Sword of the Wise
  • Blade of the Mystic
  • Blade of the Brutal
  • Bow of the Airborne
  • Swords of the Wanderer
  • Blade of the Demonic
  • Axe of the Conqueror
  • Throwing Star of the Hidden
  • Shield of the Merciful
  • Staff of the Holy
  • Trident of the Oracle
  • Katana of the Fierce
  • Sword of the Father
  • Visit of the Dauntless

Noctis using Phantom Sword Secace

Betty / November 23, 2016 / Guide