Mercenary Comparison Part I – Magitek Imperial Stronghold

Mercenary Comparison Part I – Imperial Magitek

Mercenary Showdown is a series of articles in which we test every available Mercenary troop we can get our hands on. We’ll pitch Mercenaries against one another in different scenarios, then break down each battle report to find out which Mercenary troops work best and why.

This week’s comparison is all about Magitek. Which Mercenary troops work best against Imperial Magitek? Which deal the most damage against the Imperial Stronghold? Which Mercenaries will help you take home the coveted Magitek Defender title? These are but a few of the questions that we will seek to answer in this article.

Magitek play a major role in Final Fantasy XV: A New Empire. The otherworldly creatures and their Imperial Fortresses seem to invade Eos at every opportunity. We’ve had several events in which players get the opportunity to invade the Magitek Realm and rack up points by mowing down Magitek Empires, and it’s highly likely that there will be more events like this on the horizon.

With so many Magitek events in our future, it’s wise to know which types of Mercenary troops you can use to obliterate your opponent as quickly as possible.

The Mercenaries

Here is a list of the troops we tested.

  • Toad Rider
  • Mirage Airship
  • Imperial Frigate
  • Steelwing Airship
  • Dragoon Raider
  • Dragoon Reaver
  • Killer Bee Raider
  • Seiryu Clan Cavalry
  • Magitek Samurai Warrior
  • Ravus’ Elite Magitek Cavalry

Each type of troop listed above was tested against the Magitek Imperial Stronghold; however, due to the scarcity of Magitek events involving Imperial Fortresses above level 25, we were only able to test some of these Mercenaries against Imperial Fortresses.

Attacker Setup

We wanted to make these tests relatable so that they resemble the same setup the average player would use.


When it comes to selecting the best hero while fighting Magitek, we basically have three options here. Our first choice is Ravus because of his hero skills that increase Attack, HP & Armor against an Imperial Fortress. These skills can turn your Ravus into a Magitek’s worst nightmare, but since there aren’t always Magitek around to attack, it’s best to only allocate the bare minimum of points into these skills unless you have an extra Hero Skill Reset item.

For those who don’t have Ravus, Aranea is a solid second choice. Putting AP points into her Mercenary Attack & HP and well as Dragoon Attack & HP will give you an advantage over players using other heroes.

For those who have Ignis at level 100+, using his Siege Mastery skill against Magitek is fairly effective, but you won’t be getting as many kills as you would with certain Mercenaries.

For the purpose of our tests, we will use Ravus.


What equipment you use depends on who you are attacking. For a regular Imperial Fortress, you should simply use your best attack gear. When attacking an Imperial Stronghold, which appears only on a Realm Boss tile, things can get a little tricky.

Since the Imperial Stronghold has Adaptive Wave Shields, you will actually do less damage the higher your Troop Attack is. We tried out a variety of gear combinations while attacking the Imperial Stronghold, and we actually got more kills while wearing no equipment than with anything else!

For the purpose of our tests, our Ravus is wearing Mercenary Commander equipment. Your mileage may vary.

Mercenary Longevity

The most often-heard debate against training Mercenary troops is their high cost and expendable nature. We hope to illustrate through this Mercenary Comparison series that some Mercs are worth the price compared to other purchases you may be considering.

In all of our battle reports, you’ll notice that we send either T1 or T2 troops into battle along with our Mercenaries. This is an effective trick we use to make sure all of our Mercenaries come back from each battle unscathed. In order to ensure the longevity of our Mercenary troops, we sent them in a march mixed with plenty of lower-tier troops. This way, all of the lower-tier troops from the Training Ground will die off before a single Mercenary troop is killed.

In the interest of full disclosure, this is what a battle report looks like when we sent a full march of only T2 Calvary.

The total number of troops killed by our meat-shields is negligible, but we will still be subtracting it from the total number of kills in further battle reports to find out exactly how many troops our mercenaries killed.

Vs. Imperial Stronghold Battle Reports

This section compares all of the battle reports from our attacks on the Imperial Stronghold using mercenary troops.

Dragoon Raider Comparison

Dragoon Raiders (not to be confused with the much slower, defense-minded Dragoon Reavers) can be difficult to train, as they are rarely available in the Mercenary Fighting Pits. They are fast, with an attack that is T5 equivalent, but their HP is only the equivalent of T3 troops, so a meat shield is essential.

In this battle report, 76,804 Dragoon Raiders killed 1,253 of the Imperial Stronghold’s Adaptive Shields.

Dragoon Reaver Comparison

Dragoon Reavers (again, very different from Dragoon Raiders) are T5 equivalent in HP with a T3 equivalent attack in normal combat. These are simply not effective enough to kill a significant amount of Adaptive Shields. In fact, you will actually lose the battle when attacking the Imperial Stronghold with Dragoon Reavers. This is why we combined our 37,302 Dragoon Reavers with the following battle report.

Airship Comparison

Airships are generally effective against Guardians, including the Guardian-type troops found in Imperial Fortresses. Since the Imperial Stronghold has Guardian-like defense, you might think that mercenary Airships would be effective, but in a march of 8,100 Steelwing Airships, 4,400 Corsair Airships and 12,000 Imperial Frigates as well as our Dragoon Reavers mentioned above, we still only got a total of 601 kills.

airships vs magitek stronghold
Killer Bee Comparison

Killer Bee mercenaries are another type of Raider troop, just like Dragoons. They are also one of the fastest Mercenaries available, which is great when attacking on the Crystal Scar. When we attacked the Imperial Stronghold with 27,098 Killer Bees, we killed 1,145 Adaptive Shields.

Toad Rider Comparison

Toad Riders are a type of Mercenary Marauder troop that gets some pretty crazy combat boosts when attacking tiles and other player’s empires – but not Magitek. Against the Imperial Stronghold, 50,971 Toad Riders killed 470 Adaptive Wave Shields.

Seiryu Clan, Magitek Samurai Warrior, Ravus’ Elite Magitek Comparison

Both Seiryu Clan and Magitek Samurai Warrior have incredible offense when attacking other empires, and get a boost if your opponent’s Citadel is at a higher level than your own. Meanwhile, Ravus’ Elite Magitek are supposedly T7 equivalent; however, against the Imperial Stronghold 4,261 Magitek Samurai Warriors, 42,648 Sieryu Clan Warriors 1,350 Ravus Elite Magitek Cavalry killed 221 Adaptive Wave Shields altogether.

Mercenary Showdown: Magitek Winner — Killer Bees

The curtain is down and the battle reports are in – Killer Bees are the winner of this Mercenary Showdown! Despite the fact that our Dragoon Raiders were able to take down more of the Adaptive Shields, when we sent less than 1/3 the number of Killer Bees as we did Dragoon Raiders, they killed only slightly fewer Adaptive Shields! On average, Killer Bee Raider Mercenaries are able to rack up significantly more kills when going troop-for-troop than any other mercenary when it comes to fighting Imperial Magitek.

There you have it! For those of you who have been eyeing that sweet Magitek Defender title, be sure to stock up on plenty of Dragoon Kits from the Gold Store and Moogle Marketplace before the start of the next Magitek Invasion event.

Lastly, just in case you were curious where the term “Magitek” actually came from, according to Final Fantasy lore, Magitek refers to any technology that is infused with magical properties, and debuted in Final Fantasy 6. Think of them as the slightly less sexy evil robots from Austin Powers.


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