This page explains in-depth chaining mechanics. For most people, these information are not necessary and might be difficult to process. Simply read the following summary to get started on chaining:
- Chain will increase your damage up to 4 times.
- Check chaining families to find which unit/skill chains together.
- Use 1 same element on all chaining units.
Chaining Mechanics[edit | edit source]
By hitting an enemy in quick succession with different units a chain is initiated, which increases the damage of your attack. A chain starts with the second successive hit. If the same unit hits twice in a row that chain ends.
Modifier[edit | edit source]
The formula for chain bonus damage is:
Chain modifier will be increased depending on the chain type registered. These modifier are cumulative. Every successive chain will add modifier from previous chain until the cap of 4x chain bonus damage is reached.
A chain at the most basic form will be registered as either Normal chain or Spark chain:
- Normal chain is registered if the delay from previous chain is 20 frames or less. If the frame gap from previous chain is larger than 20 frames, the chain will break.
- Chain modifier : 0.1
- Spark chain will be registered if there is no delay from previous hit (0 frame) and the previous chain isn't also a Spark chain. If the previous chain is registered as spark chain, then the current hit will be forced to become normal chain. Spark Chain label will appear when such chain occurs.
- Chain modifier: 0.4
Once the base chain has been registered, the hit will be checked for Elemental chain. Elemental chain adds modifier to the base chain.
- Elemental chain will be registered if the hit has at least 1 same element with the previous chain. Having more same elements will increase chain modifier further. Elemental Chain label will appear when such chain occurs.
- Chain modifier: 0.2 for each element
|Type||Chain modifier||# of chain to reach cap|
|Normal, no element||+0.1||30|
|Spark, no element||Alternating +0.4, +0.1||12|
|Normal, 1 element||+0.3||10|
|Spark, 1 element||Alternating +0.6, +0.3||8|
Damage Weight[edit | edit source]
Damage weight is a value assigned to each hits of an ability, adding up to 100%. For example, if an ability hits 5 times, and each hit has a weight of 20%, it splits the damage evenly.
However this is not always the case, and some abilities have more weight on the end of their hits, usually called backload damage. This is beneficial when chaining, as the chain modifier starts small and gradually increases, you want your strongest damage portion to hit once the chain modifier have accumulated or capped.
Separating an ability into 2 separate damage will also accomplish the similar thing. For example, a classic Divine Ruination family with 7 hits, can be separated into 6 weak hits + 1 strong hit. The strongest portion will hit once the chain modifier is capped. Hyoh is one example of this kind of user.
There are also some abilities with damage weight not adding up to 100%, essentially making the ability weaker or stronger.
Timing[edit | edit source]
The game logic is tied to the frame rate and runs at 60 frames per second. If the frame rate slows down, so does the game logic.
Whenever you cast an ability, the following will occur:
|1. Movement: The unit will move depending on the movement type.|
|2. Motion: The unit will perform a casting motion depending on the motion type. Majority of abilities with no movement uses the glowing orb motion for 16 frames. Occasionally an ability will have 8 frames of delay, and it is unknown what is causing this. This variable delay cannot be datamined.|
|3. Attack Frames: The attack will start, and will hit the target depending on their frames.|
|3. Return: The unit will go back to their starting position, if they move at all. This is always a walking movement, regardless of the ability movement type. This action does not wait for the attack to finish and is performed independently.|
|4. Cast delay: If the attack is multi-casted, the unit will wait for a cast delay, and then repeat from #1. Datamine usually lists this as an "effect delay", and only the first number is used.|
|5. Repeat: Repeat from #1.|
|Movement delay||Motion delay||Return delay||Cast delay|
For a consistent chaining, abilities with no movement is preferred, since it will add a variable amount of delay based on the position of the enemy and unit. You would only use a static number from motion, attack frames, and cast delay.
Frames[edit | edit source]
Example: Divine Ruination (With 2 units)
- Attack Frames: 70-7-5-7-7-7-7
- Movement: 0 frame (none)
- Motion: 16 frames (glowing orb)
- Cast delay: 40 frames
Attack frames indicate delays from previous hit. So after the motion delay is finished (16 frames), the first hit will happen after 70 frames, then 7 frames, then 5 frames, etc.
The smallest delay on attack frames can be used to gauge the speed and difficulty of chaining between 2 units. In this case, you will have to press the second unit within 4 frames of pressing the first unit. 5 frames delay is also possible if the unit going second is placed higher in the party position, see spark chain order. Any chain with 2 frames or lower is considered highly difficult.
The problem with chaining for many abilities comes from additional casts. When you are multi-casting an ability, the next cast might overlap the hits from previous cast, creating a smaller delay needed to chain with another unit.
Divine Ruination doesn't suffer from this since the second cast will not overlap the first, but the gap is still close enough for it to chain. It takes 142 frames delay before the second cast hits: 16 + 40 + 16 + 70.
Spark Chain Order[edit | edit source]
When you are spark chaining, the game internally orders which hit is counted first or second even though they both hit at the exact same frame. This is important because a chain will be broken when a unit hits twice in a row.
The unit order for spark chains follows the party order from one to six. Unit placed in the first position will always be ordered first during spark chain, while guest unit will always be last.
Movement[edit | edit source]
|Move type 0 or 4||Move type 1 or 2||Move type 3|
|Move type 5||Move type 6|
Motion[edit | edit source]
|1 or 8||Default attack|
|5||Crouch (weakened sprite)|
|4 or 7||Doesn't exist|
Chaining Families[edit | edit source]
Below are the list of popular chaining "families". The requirement for a new family to be listed:
- Have at least 3 different units with identical skill frames and movement
- The chain can be performed without having to delay the activation of the second unit
- The chain will not break in the middle
- Chaining is done by 2 units of the same family
Divine Ruination[edit | edit source]
- Edit the table on Chaining/Divine Ruination.
|None||70-7-5-7-7-7-7||7|| Single cast: Easy|
Multi cast: Easy
|Agrias||Divine Ruination +2||ST||Enhancement required|
|Veritas of the Dark||Dark Punishment||ST|
|Fryevia||Frost Flower Blitz +1||ST||Enhancement required|
|Sephiroth||The Heavens Wept||ST|
|Mario Frigo||Rebel drop - Dionysus PLDS-H||ST|
|Raegen||Blades of Azure Crimson||ST|
Piledriver[edit | edit source]
- Edit the table on Chaining/Piledriver.
|Walk||2-8-8-8-8-8-8||7|| Single cast: Easy|
Multi cast: Normal
|Aileen||Piledriver +2||ST||Enhancement required|
|Explorer Aileen||Piledriver Finish||ST|
|Lara Croft||Open Wound||ST|
Quick Hit[edit | edit source]
- Edit the table on Chaining/Quick Hit.
|None||22-5-5-5-5-5-5-5-5-5-5-20||12|| Single cast: Easy|
Multi cast: Hard
|Camille||Swift Tidal Attack||ST|
|Moogle||Mog Barrage +2||ST||Enhancement required|
Onion Slice[edit | edit source]
- Edit the table on Chaining/Onion Slice.
|None||42-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7-7||12|| Single cast: Easy|
Multi cast: Hard
|Onion Knight||Splendor of the Wind||ST|
|Splendor of the Fire||ST|
|Splendor of the Water||ST|
|Splendor of the Earth||ST|
|Full Speed Bladeblitz||AoE|
|Emilia||Throwing Fall||AoE||Access enabled by Shadow Assist, Throwing Knife (LB)|
Octaslash[edit | edit source]
- Edit the table on Chaining/Octaslash.
|None||42-10-10-10-10-10-10-10||8|| Single cast: Easy|
Multi cast: Normal
|Olive||(Pod 153) R020: Mirage||AoE|| Access enabled by equipping Pod 153, 9S TMR.|
Olive will force this ability to idle movement, otherwise you'll walk.
|Goken||Wolfclaw Fist||ST||Access enabled by Firm Punch, Light Kick|
|Falcon Kick||AoE||Access enabled by Firm Punch, Light Kick|
|Sephiroth||(Masamune) Octaslash||ST|| Access enabled by equipping Masamune, Sephiroth TMR.|
Can be only used by Sephiroth.
|Reberta||Mystic Thrust +1||ST/AoE||Enhancement required. Becomes AoE after using breath abilities.|
|Mystic Blitz||AoE||Access enabled by Mystic Thrust +2|
|Ray Jack||Sacred Strike +2||ST||Enhancement required|
|Rico Rodriguez||Chaos Object Homing||AoE|
Chainsaw[edit | edit source]
- Edit the table on Chaining/Chainsaw.
|None||42-8-8-8-8-8-16||7|| Single cast: Easy|
Multi cast: Hard
|Lara Croft||Full Auto Shotgun||AoE|
|Annika Svennson||I've got this!||AoE|
Tornado[edit | edit source]
- Edit the table on Chaining/Tornado.
|None||80-12-12-12-12-12-12-12-12-12-12-12||12|| Single cast: Easy|
Multi cast: Easy
|Pure Summoner Rydia||AoE|
|Any||Frozen Hurricane||AoE||Materia. Single cast only.|