Chapter 14 - Homecoming
In the final chapter of the game things don’t really take the chance to slow down as Noctis wakes just over 10 years in the future; to a world that is nothing more than a shell of its former self.
World of Ruin
Noctis wakes up near the Galdin Quay, completely alone; other than Umbra the dog sitting and waiting to give him a message that says his friends wait for him in Hammerhead. Head out of the enclosed space from which you woke and realise the utter turmoil that the world currently lies in since you’ve been gone. The once prosperous and popular location of the Galdin Quay hotel is now completely devoid of life and filled to the brim with demons that want you dead.
These creatures are a fair amount higher than the monsters beforehand, so you’re going to have your work cut out for you. When you get the chance to knock out a quick Alterna then it will certainly make it worth your while as you’re currently stuck being on your own for the time being. You can explore some of the rooms around the ruined hotel to get some free items, but you’re bound to come across some new demons every now and again.
Nothing is technically forcing you to strike down all the demons you come across, so feel free to make a complete run for it and head for the nearest road. The objective marker may say that you’re about 2 miles away from your destination, but once you get far enough up the road you’ll be given a lift to Hammerhead and you’ll finally be reunited with your friends after all these years, whom will fill you in on what’s been going on since Noctis’ disappearance.
When you’re ready to move onto the final quest of the game, head out through the main gates of Hammerhead and watch as the group sit down for one last meal in the outskirts, so don’t scrimp out on the ingredients and go straight for your best recipes for the final few fights in the game.
The Cure for Insomnia
Looking mighty dapper in their royal uniforms, the four friends set foot into Insomnia for one final fight against the orchestrator of this world’s destruction. Pretty much as soon as you regain control of Noctis, you’re going to be expected to fight a number of soldiers that don’t put up too much of a fight in comparison of what’s to come. Take a small rest after you strike them down and be prepared for a slew of tough fights that you’re definitely going to want to be prepared for.
To your left is an alleyway that you’re going to want to go down, even though a couple of Nagaranis are waiting for you just past it. They are relatively slow, but do incredible damage – strike them down with the use of greatswords and they won’t manage to stand for much longer once you’re through with them. Keep on the proactive route, take out the Yojimbo that is a tad easier than the previous demons and then come across a spider demon that is even easier than the previous two.
From there keep an eye out for a gate, as nearby said gate will be a button that you’re going to want to push to unlock it and move down the path to fight against some more troopers. Head towards the very end of the hall that you’ll find yourself inside and turn towards the right, press the button, and move onto the main road.
Ignore the demons spread around because there’s really only one that you will want to set your eyes on: the Behemoth King. This guy likes to fly and will use it to his advantage as best he can; but with every strength comes a weakness and his just so happens to be greatswords and shields. Don’t forget that warp-strikes deal more damage the larger the distance, so keep that in mind before you spam that warp-strike button. Be careful not to get too complacent because the Behemoth King isn’t the real challenge here; that instead comes in the form of Ifrit – the God of Fire.
Like with any good JRPG, you’ll eventually come across a boss that has more than one phase and Ifrit is most assuredly that boss! For the first half of the fight you’ve got Ifrit just sort of hanging out on his throne, lobbing waves of fire at you every chance he gets, but because of this it means he can’t move towards you to deal any damage. Hence why range weapons can be quite effective if you can keep up with the dodges for some of his abilities.
As soon as you’ve dealt enough damage, hold down the summon button whilst you find somewhere safe to retreat to have a cutscene play out that will lead to the second and much more aggressive form of Ifrit.
This second form of Ifrit is practically impenetrable when he is engulfed in flames; however with every strike it lowers his flames just that little bit more for you and the party to strike. Warp-strikes are a great way to deal some significant damage if you can time it properly, just be aware that if you spend too long near Ifrit he will end up grabbing you and tossing you high up into the air and failing to defend yourself from his oncoming strike will deal a considerable amount of damage to your health bar.
Eventually button prompts will start to appear on your screen and it’s a real good indication that he is nearly finished. Getting those prompts successfully will do a nice chunk of damage to Ifrit and several of those strikes should finally finish him off for good; prompting one last summon to finish the fight with Ifrit for good and leaving you with only one more fight to go.
With Ifrit finished, head up the long set of stairs towards the Citadel and onto the elevator that takes you just outside the final boss fight with Ardyn. Head out of the elevator and make your way up the winding and twisting corridors until you come through the main doors to the throne room. Just before Noctis goes to meet with Ardyn; Noctis requests to look at all of the photo’s Prompto has taken over the course of their adventure. Pick your personal favourite – it doesn’t affect the game much, but it strengthens the bond between Noctis, his friends, and you by turning this final act of friendship into a touching moment that marks one of the most emotional scenes in the entire game, without having any repercussions as a result of it.
This is a fight Noctis is required to take care of by himself; despite just how daunting of an opponent that Ardyn may seem. Thankfully, Ardyn has a very similar set of moves and abilities that you might recognise at this point in the game – and that’s all because they are the exact same as yours, so use that knowledge to your advantage.
Ardyn is not an easy fight by any means and he is an opponent that requires your full attention to ensure he doesn’t leave Noctis unconscious. With this in mind the aggressive approach isn’t a tactic that’s going to pan out nearly as well as earlier in the game. As such, be sure to keep on the defensive for the majority of the fight so you don’t end up swearing at the screen, trying to figure out what in the world just happened.
Ardyn has no weaknesses to speak of; as such you should pick the weapons and the weapon-style that you prefer to make the fight more comfortable for you as a player.
Once his health reaches just below 50%, Ardyn will trigger the second phase of the fight that will truly put the pair to test. Spinning and circling around both of you are your Royal Arms; signalling an epic fight between the only two survivors of the royal bloodline. Stay on the offensive and try to keep some distance between the pair of you, simply because up-close he is a lot more difficult to read with his next slew of attacks.
You know the fight is coming to an end when you can no longer phase; as such, now is the very time to start getting aggressive until button prompts start to appear on your screen. Hit those button prompts to drive every single one of the 13 Royal Arms into Ardyn and finally leave the man to rest.
When you’re ready to make the final sacrifice to save the world and end the game, take a seat on the throne, watch through the cutscenes, and witness as the game’s beautiful story comes to its end.
- See also: Plot
After a few events transpire inside the crystal that Noctis remains entombed in, he awakes after several years; both his body and mind maturing with the time spent encapsulated. Waking up alone and in complete darkness, Noctis seeks to find his previous comrades in arms, even if they haven’t set eyes on each other in almost 10 years – providing that they still remain of this world.
Battling demon after demon on his way to locate his friends, Noctis soon enough gets picked up by a man in a truck, who gives him a lift into one of the very few safe houses left to reunite him with the rest of his group. Noctis arrives back in the town and finally catches up with his friends, all of which have gained new scars and insights into the world since Noctis was last awake. Even through all that time apart, Ignis’ sight remained a fleeting thought and never returned; yet managed to overcome this difficulty and is a formidable member of the group once more.
They spend some time reminiscing and filling in Noctis on what’s been going on since he’s been gone as they all sit around a campfire one last time; enjoying a cooked meal amongst all 4 friends for the first time in a long time before they decide to embark on the final battle with Ardyn.
Kitted out in his royal attire, Noctis makes his way with his comrades into Insomnia – the capital of his hometown. Everything would be a little too easy if he could walk straight up to Ardyn; so instead he has to deal with a number of increasingly difficult enemies. Once the group find themselves outside the steps of the royal home of Noctis and his family line, Ifrit: the god of fire comes to put Noctis to the test; requiring him to best him before he may pass on any further. With the help of his friends and the use of all the guardians that have supported him thus far, Noctis manages to beat Ifrit – leading to the final blessing of the game: the blessing of fire to combat Ardyn at Noctis’ most powerful.
Just before the final battle with Ardyn, Noctis pulls Prompto to the side and picks one of the many photographs he’s taken during their adventures to take with him and give him strength for the fight. This however is not a fight Ignis, Gladio, and Prompto can attend – it’s a fight between Noctis and Ardyn and no others. Ardyn proceeds to knock out Noctis’ friends and runs; taunting Noctis to follow and give chase until they’re in a more fitting arena.
It’s at this point Ardyn officially reveals that he is part of Noctis’ bloodline and is the very reason he has the exact same abilities as Noctis; allowing him to phase, warp, and switch out weapons as he sees fit. This stalemate in skill causes the pair to trade blows on the regular, with Noctis receiving the majority of the damage throughout the battle.
Ardyn discovers after long enough that this isn’t a battle he’ll be able to joke around on the entire time and makes use of the Armiger limit break that Noctis can also use. The two battle it out until there is only one left standing – the rightful heir to the throne: Noctis! As the battle comes to an end, Noctis plunges every single one of the 13 royal arms directly into Ardyn; finally reaping him of his immortality, leaving him to rest.
Now the final battle is over, and all that’s left now is the ultimate sacrifice – to save the world and rid it of the empire and demon scourge that has plagued it for many years, Noctis must take his place on the throne and give his life for the world. Similar to how Ardyn was put to rest, Noctis is pierced through the chest with each of his forefather’s royal arms; ending the story with a tearful and heartfelt monologue to end the royal Lucis blood line and finally saving the world from its perpetual darkness.
Tips and Tricks
- Remember the camp near Galdin Quay? You can camp there alone as Noctis. Since our soon to be king doesn't know how to cook, he just cooks up a tin can wroth of food. Pretty neat, and you get to do the one and only camp alongside Umbra.
- There are two items in the Galdin Quay hotel rooms.
- I'm sure people have mentioned it before, but you can obtain Nyx Ulric's weapons in the game. A quick google search will give you a full guide, but basically all you need to do is to go up the citadel's elevators, go back down, then backtrack to the beginning area
- The large paintings in the final area give some descriptions, one particularly the group's perspective on Ardyn and how they're actually kinda sympathetic of him. Examine the large paintings as well as one small painting near the throne room doors.
- As I've mentioned in a previous post, you can engage in an aerial battle with Ifrit. Simply warp up a couple stories high in the citadel, and Ifrit (for the most part) follows you. Make sure you have airstep and air dance. It's harder to pull off than I thought, but its so damn cool.
- (VERY IMPORTANT) When going through your photos in the throne room, make sure to actually select some photos. The guys will comment on some of them. Some are pretty witty too. Like, if you pick a photo that mainly features Iris, Gladio will say "Uh, okay. Guess Big bro's gotta turn a blind eye once in a while" or something like that haha. Or if you pick a photo of, lets say, JUST Gladio, he will be all flustered. OR if you pick one of you and Prompto, he'll say how its cool but a little creepy.
- My favorite tip: When going into the final battle (either Ifrit or Ardyn), equip the Kingly Rainment WITHOUT the Jacket. After Ifrit burns the cape and Ardyn knocks the rest of it off, you just have Noctis battling without his suit and using just the dress shirt. Pretty cool, especially since most YouTube videos of the final battle feature him wearing a suit.