One of the best things about Final Fantasy XV: A New Empire is that there is no right way to play. Some players spend all their time hunting down and slaying the diverse fauna of Eos. Others see capturing and ultimately banishing heroes as the real game. Then, there are players who believe that the real game involves forging as many friendships as possible.
While none of those people are wrong, it's hard to ignore the giant, glowing Crystal that floats in the center of the map, begging to imbue its power to whoever captures it first, thereby becoming the new Emperor of the realm.
Other than asking more experienced players, nowhere in the game will you find straightforward questions and answers about how the Crystal works. The Crystal has many intricacies that players are forced to learn through trial, error, and hands-on experience – which can be quite costly if you don’t know what you’re doing.
This guide will explain the basic mechanics of the Crystal and answer common questions that everyone has when they first start fighting for the Crystal, including an explanation of Crystal titles, phases, and crystal myths.
Why Capture the Crystal?
There is no better feeling than successfully capturing the Crystal and becoming Emperor of your realm. The title of Emperor gives you combat boosts, as well as the ability to give other players in your realm either positive or negative titles – each of which comes with positive or negative stats. Capturing the Crystal in the other realm during an RvR event also wins you and your guild additional points. But most importantly, becoming Emperor gets you bragging rights!
This guide will mostly focus on your home realm Crystal, as RvR and Titan Crystals have a slightly different dynamic.
Here are the titles you can hand out to other players as soon as you become Emperor in your realm:
- The Emperor: +20% Troop Attack, +20% Troop HP
- The Emperor’s Hand: +12% Troop Attack, +6% Troop Armor, +6% Troop HP
- The Pendragon: +50% March Speed, +12% Calvary Attack
- The Archmage: +10% Research Speed, +25% Mage HP
- The Grand Architect: +10% Construction Speed, +30% Trap HP
- The Princess: +50% Gil Production
- The Collector: +25% Gathering Speed, +25% Food Production, +25% Energy Production, +25% Stone Production, +25% Metal Production
- The Chosen One: +20% Hero Attack, +20% Hero Critical Hit, +20% Maximum MP Limit
- The Intern: +1% Training Speed, -10% All Resource Production
- The Shameful Outcast: -3% Construction Speed, -10% Troop HP
- The Traitor: -3% Training Speed, -15% March Speed, +100% Cowardice
- The Fool: -10% Troop Attack, -5% All Resource Production
- The Beggar: -15% Gil Production
- The Sad Clown: -25% March Speed, -12% Troop Attack, -12% Troop HP
- The Tainted: -10% Troop HP, -15% Food Production
When Can I attack the Crystal?
The Crystal has two phases: Protected and Contested.
When the Crystal is in the Protected Phase, it cannot be attacked. This phase typically lasts 3 days, but is always indicated on a timer that can be viewed by clicking on the Crystal. The only exception to the 3 day rule is a special event, such as RvR, which resets the Crystal at the beginning of the event, thus forcing the Crystal into the Contested phase and kicking out any heroes or troops occupying the Crystal.
During the Protected Phase, the current Emperor and anyone from his or her guild can send reinforcements into the crystal, however, only the Emperor can send a hero into the Crystal. When there isn’t a special event going on, such as RvR, any reinforcements inside the Crystal will stay there as the timers runs out and it switches over from Protected to Contested.
Once the Contested Phase starts, anyone may attack the Crystal, however, the countdown timer will not start and the Crystal cannot enter back into the Protected Phase until it has been reset. The Crystal is reset any time another guild takes control of the Crystal and a new player becomes Emperor.
As soon as the Crystal is reset and there is a new Emperor, the clock will start on the Crystal and it will begin counting down the time until it goes back into the Protected Phase. The Contested phase typically lasts 12 hours and is indicated by the glowing and flashing Crystal icon just above the map. Again, special events such as RvR may cause the Contested phase to be shorter or longer, but for regular Crystal rotations, the Contested Phase will always start at 12 hours.
Any time the current Emperor is defeated and a new guild captures the Crystal, the timer resets again and the 12-hour Contested Phase starts all over. The only way to stop the Crystal from resetting is for the Emperor to go undefeated for 12 hours straight, after which, the Crystal goes back into the Protected Phase.
How Do I Become Emperor?
Emperor is the title given to whomever successfully captures – and holds – the Crystal during the Contested Phase.
To capture the Crystal, a player needs to attack it with their hero and win against the troops reinforcing the Crystal. This can be accomplished with either a single march or with a rally. Anyone in your guild can donate to a rally attacking the Crystal; however, only the rally leader can become Emperor if the rally wins.
To win in a Crystal fight, the attacking player must have less overall casualties than the troops reinforcing the Crystal. When another player attacks the Crystal and wins, both the hero and the remaining reinforcements in the Crystal will be ejected and the attacker becomes the new Emperor, as indicated by the guild banner hovering above the Crystal.
Reinforcing the Crystal
If the Crystal is taken by a rally, the surviving troops in that rally will become Crystal reinforcements, Hero included.
If the Crystal is taken with a single march, the troops in that march become Crystal reinforcements.
If a player sends multiple single marches to attack the Crystal and their first march wins, making them Emperor, then that player’s following marches which were attacking the Crystal will become reinforcements when they arrive.
In all scenarios, the Crystal’s capacity for reinforcements will be equal to that of the Emperor’s rally capacity.
Any player in the same guild as the Emperor can send as many reinforcements to the Crystal as they like, given that they have free march slots to do so and the Crystal’s reinforcement capacity is not full.
This section is meant to clear up some of the many myths commonly associated with the Crystal.
Myth #1. A hero attacking the Crystal cannot be captured.
Just as if you were attacking any empire, if the odds are overwhelmingly against you, your hero will be captured by the Emperor. Just like on any loot or resource tile, a captured hero will remain captive in the Crystal until the Emperor’s hero returns to their empire. Once the Emperor's hero returns to their empire, the hero can be rescued by defeating them in battle
Myth #2. When holding the Crystal in another realm (RvR), my hero/reinforcements will return with me once my teleport expires.
If your hero or troops are in the other realm's Crystal and your teleport expires, you will be forced back to your home realm while any troops/hero reinforcing the Crystal remain in that realm. Because players cannot teleport while their hero is outside of their empire, you will be forced to pull your hero out of the other realm's Crystal and allow it to return home before you can teleport back to the other realm. Note that it takes troops several days to March home from another realm, so be sure to keep a large cache of March Speedups handy
Myth #3. A hero must be used when attacking to gain control of the Crystal.
While a hero is certainly helpful when both attacking and defending the Crystal, it is not a requirement to become Emperor.
Myth #4. If the Emperor removes his or her hero from the Crystal, another player can send in their hero as a replacement.
Once a player has been declared Emperor be taking control of the Crystal, only their hero may enter the Crystal. In order to send a different hero into the Crystal to defend it, it must first be reset by a different guild taking control of the Crystal.
Myth #5. After capturing the Crystal in another realm, the Emperor may give titles to players in their home realm.
Any Emperor in any realm may only issue titles to players in the same realm as the Crystal that they control. The Emperor must also physically be in the same realm as the Crystal that they control in order to issue titles. The only exception to this rule is Titan and Neutral Realm events, in which no players reside.
Stay stuned for our next segment on Crystal Attack!
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