Unique and powerful new Mercenary Commanders have arrived in Eos! These troops are quite different than traditional mercenaries and bring with them a fun, new element of gameplay. But how do Mercenary Commanders work and how can you get some of your own for free?
In this article, we will take a look at all of the types of Mercenary Commanders in Final Fantasy XV: A New Empire, how to obtain them, each of their special abilities, and how to get the most out of them in combat.
What are Mercenary Commanders & How Do They Work?
Mercenary Commanders are new troops that provide additional boosts in any march they are included in. Unlike other Mercenary Troops, they cannot be trained. Mercenary Commanders can be obtained in chests (which must be pretty big to fit all of those troops inside!), which can be obtained in the special Mercenary Commander dungeon at the Proving Grounds, as well as in packs and Luna gifts. Having Gladiouslus increases your chances of getting free Mercenary Commander chests as Luna gifts.
Commander Troops give your marches additional benefits, depending on the type of Commander used. You can use a Mercenary Commander by simply including them in your march when you select troops. Each type of troop coresponds to type of Commander whose boosts only work on that specific troop type.
The boosts from Mercenary Commanders will affect all troops when occupying a Crystal. Any guild member can reinforce with their Commander Troops, however, the boosts they provide will only be applied to the Emperor of the Crystal.
Keeping Commanders Alive
The problem that most players have experienced with Commander Troops is that they tend to die any time they are used in battle, due to their lower stats. There are several strategies you can use to keep your Commanders alive as long as possible.
Let’s say you are a level 40-something empire using T5 Troops. Since R1 Commanders are equivalent to T3 Troops and R2 Commanders are equivalent to T4 Troops, including either of these in a march with your T5 Troops will almost guarantee that your Commanders will die first. Even R3 Commanders, who are the equivalent of T5 Troops, will die at the same rate as your T5 Troops and might not make it home from the battlefield alive.
One strategy you could use is to use a lower tier of troops as a meatshield, so to speak. For example, a march with a capacity of 59,000 includes 20,000 T5 Mage, 39,000 T4 Mage, and an R3 Auric Magus Commander. In this scenario, our opponent needs to get through 39,000 T4 Mages before either the T5 Mages or R3 Auric Magus can even take damage. Meanwhile, both our T5 Mages and T4 Mages gain +90% Mage Attack from our R3 Auric Magus Commander.
You can also consider adding any type of Guardian to your march — City Guardians, Frost Guardians, and Crownsguard will all serve as an adequate meat wall to protect your troops; this is especially good when you are sending an R1 Commander along for the boost. (Since Guardians can be costly, you may also want to consider throwing in a little bit of T2 for added protection, to save your R1 Commanders.)
Oracle Temple and Commanders
At the Oracle Temple, new special lifetime boosts have been added to help increase the longevity of your Commanders and the prowess of the troops whom they accompany. These added boosts are:
- +250% Commander HP
- +750% Commander Armor
- +175% Troop Attack with Commander
- +125% Troop HP with Commander
- +150% Troop Armor with Commander
The problem with these lifetime boosts, as with all of the bonuses at the Oracle Temple, is that they require an incredibly large amount of Oracle materials to craft. Thankfully, the addition of the limited time Oracle Temple Proving Grounds dungeon will help you collect as many of these materials as possible without having to purchase a dozen packs.
Advanced Combat Research and Commanders
Another way to increase the chances of your Mercenary Commanders surviving each battle is through Advanced Combat Research. The very first thing to research is Commander Survival, which can give a total of +3,400% HP and +5,000% Armor to your Commander Troops when maxed out.
While we’re on the subject of Advanced Combat Research, take advantage of the Troop Attack with Commander and Troop HP with Commander bonuses as well. Learn more strategies for using Advanced Combat Research here.
Gladiolus and Commanders
After unlocking Gladiolus, his first Hero Skill is Recruit Commanders, which will allow you to periodically receive Mercenary Commander chests in your Luna gift. These chests can give both the basic and more advanced Commanders, so stay sharp and don’t let a single Luna gift slip through your fingers!
Gladiolus also has the expanded Hero Skills Rally HP with Commander at level 80 and Rally Attack with Commander at level 90. As with Prompto’s expanded hero skills, these two boosts are only effective when rallying an enemy empire and do not go into effect when rallying the Crystal or Titan.
To learn more about Gladiolus’ combat strategies, watch for our Hero Guide coming soon.
List of R1 Mercenary Commanders
R1 Mercenary Commanders are the equivalent of T3 Troops, meaning they will die before T4, T5, and T6 troops. This is the most basic version of all Commander Troops, however, they seem to be plentiful in Commander chests and are therefore expendable.
|Arc Lunio||+20% Warrior Attack|
|Auric Magus||+20% Mage Attack|
|Omnaste||+20% Cavalry Attack|
|Captain Gustav||+20% Siege Attack|
|Tiriana||+20% Cripple HP|
|Beren||+1% Guardian Armor Bonus for every 1,000 troops your opponent has (Max: +25% Guardian Armor Bonus)|
|Sky Captain Trygis||+20% Airship Attacks when opponent has Guardians; +20% Airship HP when opponent has no Guardians|
|BMCC||+5% Samurai Attack, +10% Samurai HP, +15% Samurai Armor|
|Rogue Magitek||-20% Attack Debuff vs enemy Magitek Troops|
|MAX-1-M-US||+1% Mech Attack for every 1,000 troops your opponent has (Max: +20% Max Attack)|
|Firebrand Eliana||+25% Raider Attack vs Magitek|
|Loyalist General||+10% HP to Training Grounds Troops that outnumber Mercenaries|
|Midgardsormr Thane||+20% Marauder Attack on realm tiles.|
|Quartermaster Evie||+40% Gathering HP|
|Harald, Siegemaster||+20% Crystal Attack|
|Collum, Just Collum||+20% City Assault HP|
List of R2 Mercenary Commanders
R2 Mercenary Commanders are the equivalent of T4 Troops, however, they offer more than twice the bonuses that R1 Commanders do
|Arc Lunio||+50% Warrior Attack|
|Auric Magus||+50% Mage Attack|
|Omnaste||+50% Cavalry Attack|
|Captain Gustav||+50% Siege Attack|
|Tiriana||+50% Cripple HP|
|Beren||+1% Guardian Armor Bonus for every 500 troops your opponent has (Max: +60% Guardian Armor Bonus)|
|Sky Captain Trygis||+50% Airship Attacks when opponent has Guardians; +50% Airship HP when opponent has no Guardians|
+20% Samurai Attack, +15% Samurai HP, +30% Samurai Armor
|Rogue Magitek||-50% Attack Debuff vs enemy Magitek Troops|
|MAX-1-M-US||+1% Mech Attack for every 500 troops your opponent has (Max: +50% Max Attack)|
|Firebrand Eliana||+60% Raider Attack vs Magitek|
|Loyalist General||+20% HP to Training Grounds Troops that outnumber Mercenaries|
|Midgardsormr Thane||+50% Marauder Attack on realm tiles.|
|Quartermaster Evie||+100% Gathering HP|
|Harald, Siegemaster||+50% Crystal Attack|
|Collum, Just Collum||+50% City Assault HP|
List of R3 Mercenary Commanders
R3 Mercenary Commanders are the same as T5 Troops. While they can provide some game-changing boosts for your army, they are more rare than R2 and R1 Commanders.
|Arc Lunio||+90% Warrior Attack|
|Auric Magus||+90% Mage Attack|
|Omnaste||+90% Cavalry Attack|
|Captain Gustav||+90% Siege Attack|
|Tiriana||+90% Cripple HP|
|Beren||+1% Guardian Armor Bonus for every 300 troops your opponent has (Max: +100% Guardian Armor Bonus)|
|Sky Captain Trygis||+90% Airship Attacks when opponent has Guardians; +90% Airship HP when opponent has no Guardians|
|BMCC||+30% Samurai Attack, +30% Samurai HP, +50% Samurai Armor|
|Rogue Magitek||-90% Attack Debuff vs enemy Magitek Troops|
|MAX-1-M-US||+1% Mech Attack for every 300 troops your opponent has (Max: +90% Max Attack)|
|Firebrand Eliana||+110% Raider Attack vs Magitek|
|Loyalist General||+35% HP to Training Grounds Troops that outnumber Mercenaries|
|Midgardsormr Thane||+90% Marauder Attack on realm tiles.|
|Quartermaster Evie||+180% Gathering HP|
|Harald, Siegemaster||+90% Crystal Attack|
|Collum, Just Collum||+90% City Assault HP|
List of R4 Mercenary Commanders
R4 is where you start to see some significant benefits with your Mercenary Commanders. They are T6 equivalent, so sending them in a march full of T5 Troops should keep your Commander alive to fight another battle, so long as your entire army is not defeated.
|Arc Lunio||+140% Warrior Attack|
|Auric Magus||+140% Mage Attack|
|Omnaste||+140% Cavalry Attack|
|Captain Gustav||+140% Siege Attack|
|Tiriana||+140% Cripple HP|
|Beren||+1% Guardian Armor Bonus for every 150 troops your opponent has (Max: +150% Guardian Armor Bonus)|
|Sky Captain Trygis||+140% Airship Attacks when opponent has Guardians; +140% Airship HP when opponent has no Guardians|
|BMCC||+40% Samurai Attack, +40% Samurai HP, +95% Samurai Armor|
|Rogue Magitek||-140% Attack Debuff vs enemy Magitek Troops|
|MAX-1-M-US||+1% Mech Attack for every 150 troops your opponent has (Max: +150% Max Attack)|
|Firebrand Eliana||+170% Raider Attack vs Magitek|
|Loyalist General||+60% HP to Training Grounds Troops that outnumber Mercenaries|
|Midgardsormr Thane||+140% Marauder Attack on realm tiles.|
|Quartermaster Evie||+280% Gathering HP|
|Harald, Siegemaster||+140% Crystal Attack|
|Collum, Just Collum||+140% City Assault HP|
List of R5 Mercenary Commanders
R5 Mercenary Commanders are the creme de la creme. The boosts provided by these troops is is greater than R1-R4 Commanders combined. Just one of these can mean the difference between Glorious Victory and Massive Defeat. As such, they are notoriously difficult to get your hands on, but if you do, you’ll want to strategically place them in battles to make sure that there is no chance of losing them.
|Arc Lunio||+500% Warrior Attack|
|Auric Magus||+500% Mage Attack|
|Omnaste||+500% Cavalry Attack|
|Captain Gustav||+500% Siege Attack|
|Tiriana||+500% Cripple HP|
|Beren||+1% Guardian Armor per 100 enemy troops (Max: +800%)|
|Sky Captain Trygis||+500% Airship Attacks when opponent has Guardians; +500% Airship HP when opponent has no Guardians|
|BMCC||+100% Samurai Attack +100% Samurai HP, +300% Samurai Armor|
|Rogue Magitek||-500% Attack Debuff vs enemy Magitek Troops|
|MAX-1-M-US||+1% Mech Attack per 100 Mech Troops (Max: +800%)|
|Firebrand Eliana||+600% Raider Attack vs Magitek|
|Loyalist General||+200% HP to Training Grounds Troops that outnumber Mercenaries|
|Midgardsormr Thane||+500% Marauder Attack on realm tiles.|
|Quartermaster Evie||+1,000% Gathering HP|
|Harald, Siegemaster||+500% Crystal Attack|
|Collum, Just Collum||+500% City Assault HP|
Having Mercenary Commanders at your disposal will give you even more tools to strategically defeat your opponents. While some seem to be expendable, the higher level Commanders offer up some serious benefits that simply cannot be passed up.
Like all mercenaries, take care to protect your Commanders and ensure that they live through as many battles as possible by completing Advanced Combat Research and unlocking lifetime boosts in the Oracle Temple.
As more types of Commanders are added to the game, we are learning more about how they work. We can surmise that Commander Troops are here to stay and even more types will be added later on. Do your best to collect as many of these troops as possible for now to make every attack stronger than the last.