There are thousands of players in the older servers in Final Fantasy; however, there are new Realms beginning on a regular basis. Each Server is in a different spot in the release progression, and this article is meant for the newest of the new; an Introduction Guide to the brand new servers, and a roadmap for new players that are starting the game. Let’s start at the very beginning… it’s a perfect place to start (queue Sound of Music earworm…you’re welcome).
When you first download the game you’ll have a tutorial to complete. After finishing this, the first thing you want to do is change your name, as you’ll have an “Empire” name full of numbers. Choose wisely, as it’s expensive to change your name in the early days. You want to go to your Items/Special and choose Change Player Name and Change Empire Name.
The second step, join the FFXVANE HUB in-game chat! There are over a thousand players there ready to lend a hand with any questions you may have!
The third step, join a Guild. This isn’t set in stone and you can always leave and join a different one. Being in a Guild has benefits such as other players shortening your Research and Build times with Helps, and Guild events.
After you have made it through the tutorial and changed your name, you will want to start constructing your buildings. The game will prompt you at first which buildings to do. You will also be able to see which are upgradeable by a blue arrow.
Each building has a function, and some have underlying combat stats to help boost you in battle. Let’s take a closer look at each building. For more on buildings, and to see future released buildings, click here.
Your Citadel offers several functions. First of all, it’s what represents you in the game and is the first thing people see when they look at your account. Secondly, for each level increased, it enhances March Size and Troop Capacity.
This is where you do the brunt of the Research. Available categories are:
More categories will become available as your Realm progresses in the game.
The Hospital provides space for a number of limited troops and improves your Healing Speed when enhanced.
Multiple Hospital Wards can be built in your City. Each Ward increases the number of beds for your troops, as well as offering a Troop HP bonus.
Just like the Wards, multiple Barracks can be built. In addition to increasing the Training Queue, these buildings have a Troop Attack Bonus that increases with each level up.
Multiple Banks can be built, and generate Gil, Coin or Silver pieces. Additionally, each bank provides a Troop Armor Bonus, increasing with each level-up.
Craft gear, combine Gems and Materials and manage your inventory in this building.
The Hero Monument gives an XP bonus if you choose to hire a new hero, as opposed to resurrecting it after banishment. Additionally, all your Heroes are listed here, and it is another way to swap between desired active Heroes.
Help your teammates with RSS! Entering the Trading Post gives an alphabetical listing of Guildmates to trade with. Each building level increases the amount of RSS that can be sent in one march.
A Guild Hall is necessary to set a rally on another player. Each level increases Rally Capacity. You can also view ongoing War Rallies and War Defense in this building.
The Watchtower warns you of scouts, solos, and rallies coming for your gates (or the Crystal if you are Emperor). Additionally, it will inform you of trades and reinforcements. Every 5 levels give additional information about the incoming march.
This building houses reinforcements from your Guildmates.
Deposit gold here and collect it with interest at the end of the timer.
Herein are imprisoned the Heroes you capture in battle. Increasing the level of this building decreases the detention time before a prisoner can be Banished.
When a prisoner is Banished, it activates the Bonuses within the Portal; Troop Attack, Troop HP and March speed. The higher the Portal, the higher the Bonus.
Build traps here, and each level provides a City Defense Attack Bonus.
Inside the Proving Grounds, battle with Monsters to obtain Gear materials, RSS, Hero XP and much more. In the early days, there may be only one Dungeon available to run, but more will become available as time goes on.
Hatch and send your Monsters into battle using the Monster Pen! You must first obtain a specific Egg to hatch your Monster, and then upgrade it with Hatching Stones and Monster Food.
The Moogle Market is a shop for your Empire’s needs. Pick up items needed here for Moogle Market credits. During special events, the Market may use different types of tokens. The Market is filled with many many items such as Hero EXP, Hero Medals, VIP Chests, and Loyalty.
Produces Stone, Granite or Marble.
Prevents a portion of your RSS from being stolen during an attack.
Produces Energy, Essence, Spirit, Mana or Spark.
Produces Food, Wheat or Corn.
Produces Metal, Lead, Copper or Iron
Here lie the bodies of Banished Heroes, both your own and your enemies that have fallen within your Banishment Portal.
There are a few things to know when building your account;
- Before you fill all your spots with multiple buildings (like Barracks), you need to do the following Quests. Each one provides a 24 hour Empire Barrier! Build 10 each of the following to Level 1; Energy Extractor, Farm, Mine, Quarry, Bank, Hospital Ward, Barracks. Then just deconstruct all but one of each.
- Once you hit level 15, your Hero can be captured by another player. This puts a serious crimp in your progression if you have to wait for days to get it back. Either Shield up or use a Ghost Rally. What’s a Ghost Rally, let’s discuss
- A Ghost Rally is when you send your Hero and 1 or more troops on a long march across the map, preceded by an 8-hour wait. Choose an unshielded Empire on the other side of the map from you. Click it and choose “Rally.” Then choose the 8-hour option. Pick your Hero and 1+ Troops and hit “March.” This gives you 8 hours, plus the march time for your Hero to be protected. Keep in mind that you can’t use your Hero for anything during this time period, so if you want to hit a Monster or do some work on your Empire, you’ll need to cancel it and reset when you are done.
- Once you hit level 20, your Hero can be executed.
- Try and build evenly. It’s super annoying to get to a Citadel upgrade and realize you have 4 levels of another building to upgrade first.
- If you’re buying packs, purchase the Second Building Queue early on. It makes things go much faster.
Once you have unlocked the University, it’s time to start on Research. As mentioned above there are five categories in the early game;
- Adventurer: Using Shards won in events and gifts, there are lots of different things to research here. However, there are no Speed-Ups for them, so be prepared to wait if you start one.
- Economics: All things Economical, to speed your Builds and Research along with RSS Production.
- Combat: This is where you unlock your Troop Tiers, along with Combat boosts.
- Defense: Mainly focused on Traps, there are also defensive research nodes here.
- Hero: Monster Research
So where to start? I like to do the first Hero research right off the bat so that I can start hitting Monsters both for the drops and to complete Events. After I’ve spent a bit of time on this, I move to Economics for the Instant Construction Time node. This allows you to finish the last bit of Construction time for free (how much depends on this research, along with Hero Skilling and VIP).
After that point, it’s really up to you. Combat is a good place to focus if you’re planning on attacking people. Adventurer has a medley of lots of different helpful boosts. Or continue with the Hero Research to increase your Monster hitting capabilities.
There is only one Hero available in the first days of the game: Noctis. As time goes on, additional Heroes will be released, with different capabilities. However, at this time you only have to worry about Noctis. His maximum level is 100 in the early game.
Noctis has a Skill Tree that gives boosts to your Empire. It is fairly simple, with Combat boosts running down the left side and Economic boosts down the right. The tricky part is that the Construction/Research/Training boosts require you to skill down both sides of the tree. You can reset this tree, but it requires a pack in the early game, so it’s not cheap. My suggestion? Focus on the left side, and the first Construction node, but really it’s up to you.
Every level you progress with Noctis gives more skill points to work with. Additionally, each time you level up your MP bar fills. Take advantage of this! Don’t keep leveling up without draining the MP on hitting Monsters. That’s a huge mistake.
There are just a few different kinds of Gear available at this point. You craft Gear in the Forge and Equip it on your Hero. Let’s first look at navigating the Forge.
When you enter the Forge you’ll see several options.
- Craft: This is where you’ll craft a piece of Gear. You can craft one piece each for Helmet, Body Armor, Footwear and Weapons. You can craft two pieces of Accessories but the second slot only becomes available at Forge Level 20.
You’ll notice there are six grades of Gear available. Unless you have a 100% chance at a piece, you’re playing the luck gods. In order to have a better chance at a higher Grade, you must first accumulate pieces (through hitting Monsters, completing Events, or purchasing Packs), and then Combine the pieces to a higher level. Additional pre-requisites for a specific piece of Gear include Gil and Hero Level. Each Gear piece requires a specific Hero level in order to craft and equip.
- Combine: This is where you combine Gems and Materials. You need four of each before you can combine to the next level. This is a very manual process when you first start. Later in the game, you’ll be able to “combine all”.
- Inventory: See what Gear you have here
- Gems/Materials: See what Gems and Materials you have here
There are several sets available, as well as pieces that aren’t part of a set. The non-set pieces are easier to obtain materials for and craft, but the stats are lower. You can view all available pieces of Gear in the Forge. Look at the stats for each and make a decision that is best for you. In a future Guide, we will discuss basic Combat theory and stats, along with Gear combinations. For today, let’s take a look at each of the Sets.
- Divine Research Gear: This gives a boost to Research Speed
- Hunter Gear: This is your Monster gear, but it also has Defensive applications.
- Arbiter Gear: This is the Attack set. Get materials for this by hitting Flan monsters and collecting their Lairs.
- Sentinel Gear: This is the Defensive Set. Get materials for this by hitting Garula monsters and collecting their Lairs.
Although tempting to just wear all of the same set, often it is more beneficial to mix and match to get the stats you need. For example, the Sentinel weapon is meh on defense. You’d most likely have a better result using the Artiber weapon to get more attack and kill more of the opposition’s march. That being said, it requires a high Hero level to craft, so spend some time poking around the Forge and considering all your options.
Gems are embedded in your Gear to give it additional stats. There are Gems available to boost for Monster hitting and combat. Word of advice; don’t bother with Siege or Trap gems. Removing Gems requires Gem Savers, which can be won in events.
Another piece of advice for Gems. Don’t just combine them to the highest level right away. Four of a level 2 gem. For example, if you look at the chart below, you will see that four Level 1 Amethyst Gems give a better boost than one Level 2.
|Garnet Gem||Warrior Attack||1%||2%||3.5%||10%||23%||48%|
|Topaz Gem||Cavalry Attack||1%||2%||3.5%||10%||23%||48%|
|Sapphire Gem||Mage Attack||1%||2%||3.5%||10%||23%||48%|
|Emerald Gem||Troop HP||.5%||1%||2%||4%||10%||22%|
|Rose Gem||March Speed||1%||2%||3.5%||5.5%||8%||11%|
|Amethyst Gem||Troop Armor||2.5%||5%||8%||19%||41%||81%|
|Citrine Gem||Trap Attack||1%||2%||3.5%||10%||23%||48%|
|Opal Gem||Siege Attack||1%||2%||3.5%||10%||23%||48%|
|Monster Gem||Monster Speed/Crit Hit||2%/.3%||4%/.6%||6%/.9%||9%/1.2%||12%/1.5%||15%/1.8%|
To see more about upcoming Gems, check out our pre-dark world Gem Guide!
We are going to go in-depth in another article on Combat, but let’s touch on it briefly. There are four different Troop Tiers in the early game, Tiers 1-4. Unlocking these Tiers requires research in the University (although T1 is unlocked immediately). As a general rule, you can defend two tiers below your opponent’s march, but that’s just a really loose rule of thumb with many different considerations. Within the Troop Tiers there are four different types of Troops;
- Warrior: Strong against Cavalry, weak against Mage
- Mage: Strong against Infantry, weak against Cavalry
- Cavalry: Strong against Mage, weak against Infantry
- Siege: Strong against Traps, weak against…basically everything. Use Siege to gather, Siege is your gathering minions.
When you are attacking, keep the leverages above in mind. Many new attackers make the mistake of always sending a mixed march. Don’t do this, and don’t send Siege. The only time Siege may possibly be ok is if your Opponent has a lot of traps. Even then there’s a rousing debate over whether they really help.
Scout your opponent. This early in the game most people will not use Anti-scout because it is expensive. Look at the report. Do they have more Warrior? Send Mage! Do they have more Mage? Send Cavalry! See what I’m doing here? Make smart attacking decisions.
Also, know your stats. If you are strongest with your Cavalry troops, use those unless the target is heavy Warrior. Where can you find your stats? I’m glad you asked! Hit your “Power” on the top of your screen and then “Boosts”.
The first thing I’m going to touch on here is; don’t train Troops until you’re ready to defend! A lot of new players just train Troops willy nilly and then are super sad when they are killed. Other than Gathering Troops, there’s really no reason to have any troops at all until you have the Research and Gear to defend.
A good Defense relying on more than just the Armor bonus. All stats come into play here. Attack helps kill the attacker’s march, Health helps keep your troops alive. In fact, we are going to discuss a lovely Health based build in the Combat article.
A good rule of thumb is that you need at least have no more than two troop tiers less defending than your Opponent. If someone is sending T4 at you, at the very minimum you need T2 to defend (VERY MINIMUM).
Traps are a controversial item at times as well. For the most part, traps are meh. If you decide to use traps, make them one Tier HIGHER than your bottom Tier of troops. Otherwise, you’ll most likely go up like a candle. For example. If your lowest Tier is T2, have T3 traps. This protects the traps and helps kill your enemy’s march.
Tips and Tricks
We’ve given a lot of advice above, but here are some additional tips and tricks to fire up your game;
- Loyalty: This is really important! Loyalty is used in the Guild shop to purchase many things, but most importantly Ports and Shields. If you are buying packs, get the Double Loyalty Pack early one! Also, work with your Guild members to have “Loyalty” Parties to fill your daily bar. Time these with Events! One trick for your Loyalty Party: use the Deconstruct feature. Start a Decon, but don’t finish it. Let everyone hit help, and then cancel it. Lather, rinse and repeat. Don’t forget to cancel it though, or you’ll be very sad later (been there, done that).
- Also in the Pack Buying Genre, buy the second Construction Queue. Super helpful.
- Gather, gather, gather: Not just for the RSS, but for the other items collected when you finish.
- Hit as many events as possible. Time your activities around the Events. For example, wait for the Construction event to finish your Citadel upgrade.
- Hives: People love hives. So do enemies. It puts everyone in one convenient place to attack. Consider not hiving. With Ports being in short supply, you’re in a much better place to not be attacked if you’re off along (unless you want to be attacked).
There’s a lot to take in when beginning Final Fantasy! This Introduction Guide is just the tip of the ice burg. We will be publishing additional Guides that will go into early game combat mechanics (including the Crystal), and getting a strong understanding of the User Interfaces in FFX.
Do you have any questions or comments? Let us know in the comments below!