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Hello! I am a hardcore gamer with over 20 years of gaming experience. Gaming is my life, love, and passion. I also love comics and anime.

Final Fantasy XV has been in development for about a decade (since 2006) and it has finally been released this week. This has been a truly exciting launch for fans of the series and new comers alike. Now that players are beginning to get their hands on the game and diving into its super rich world, there are truly a ton of things to take in, so here are just a few tips you should know to help ease your way into the game.

Play The Tutorial And Practice Parrying!

Parrying a boss attack
Parrying a boss attack

This may seem like an obvious tip for any new player, but many people skip tutorials to get to the start of the game. For Final Fantasy XV, skipping the tutorial may be a mistake since the combat mechanics may take some time to get used to, its probably best to start right away. Playing the combat tutorial introduces the blocking mechanics as well as how to use the warp strike, blindside attacks, and even parry incoming attacks. These simple combat mechanics are absolutely CRUCIAL to surviving later battles in the game. Mastering combat is key, so I recommend to start practicing the parry timing early.

Get Comfortable With Those Menus

Customizing Noctis with a Titanium Bangle and Casual Outfit
Customizing Noctis with a Titanium Bangle and Casual Outfit

When it comes to RPG's like Final Fantasy XV, there are usually lots of menus involved and this can be hectic and even downright overwhelming for a new player. FFXV has a pretty organized menu system although some sections may go overlooked if you don't pay attention. There are almost hidden options within the menu system that allow you to customize your squad mate's weapons, all character costumes, as well as the option to equip new accessories and spells. Keep in mind that there is a separate Elemancy menu that allows you to craft and combine spells and equip them in your weapons slots.

Elemancy Menu
Elemancy Menu

Be sure to revisit the gear menu as you progress, and equip yourself and your squad mates with better weaponry and accessories. These will greatly improve your stats and help you out when you're in a tough spot. Also be sure to get comfortable with the right trigger (RT on PS4) which pulls up the "tactical menu" which allows you to use items on the fly such as potions. You will need to use this menu many times during the intense boss fights later in the game.

Don't forget Your Ascension Points!

Combat skill tree
Combat skill tree

From the beginning of the game you start earning and accumulating ascension points which allow you to unlock new abilities and skills. You can unlock these enhancements across multiple skill trees and they will boost that specific area of gameplay. This is also another menu feature that can be easily forgotten about. I was about 13 hours into the game before scrolling through the menus again and realizing that I close to 200 undistributed ascension points. This severely slowed my progression. I was stuck in early areas of the game that I would have easily beaten had I unlocked more skills. Do yourself a favor and don't forget to check because you could be progressing much faster if you use AP!

Try To Eat Meals Before Going Into A Fight

Freshly Grilled Fish
Freshly Grilled Fish

Normally food in video games is simply used to replenish small amounts of health. In FFXV eating meals also boosts stats for a short time. This can be very beneficial when starting a new quest or bounty hunt. If you have the "gil", it is worth purchasing some food before going out for a quest, as it can give you and your team the edge you need to succeed in battle.

Finally, The Amazing Chocobos

Prince Noctis and friends with new Chocobos
Prince Noctis and friends with new Chocobos

Chocobos are the coolest things ever and are by far one of my favorite parts of the game. They can be extremely helpful for traveling shorter distances on foot where the Regalia cannot go. After you complete the bounty hunt "A Behemoth Undertaking" the Chocobos will be unlocked and you may rent them from any "rent a bird" station. Not only do the Chocobos looks cool and handle really well, you can actually give yours a name and even customize it!

The tactical menu and the option to Call Chocobo
The tactical menu and the option to Call Chocobo

My main tip here is a reminder to use the "tactical menu" after losing your Chocobo. Normally it will disappear after a short time, and at first it seems like there is no possible way to get it back. After trying to figure out how to call it multiple times, a memo popped up when I tried to rent another Chocobo that states there are whistles available in the "tactical menu". All you have to do is open the tactical menu (RT) and scroll to the right and there is a list of whistles to call your Chocobo or command it to "dash" and quickly get you out of a fight.

Chocobo customization menu
Chocobo customization menu

Overall, FFXV is an awesome adventure game and you can easily invest hours of time having a blast exploring new areas, fighting new beasts, fishing, cooking, taking photos, racing Chocobos, or simply riding in the Regalia and following the main quest. All right Final Fantasy XV players this has been my 5 helpful tips, and hopefully this information can help you on your quest in the game. These are just a few things that I struggled with while exploring and completing bounty hunting quests. Either way I hope it was helpful or at the very least an entertaining read. Happy hunting!