Final Fantasy 16 Garuda boss strategy

Garuda is the first major Eikon you’ll fight in Final Fantasy 16 and also the first proper Eikon vs. Eikon battle, excluding the prologue, so believe us when we say things get epic.

You will have already gained the power of this wind-based Eikon in a fight against her domineering Benedikta Harman in Final Fantasy 16. However, she somehow manages to transform into Garuda, forming a tempest that threatens to lay waste to the land, so en It’s up to Clive to finish the fight against Benedikta for good.

This battle occurs during the main scenario quest ‘Awakening’ at the end of the Eye of the Tempest stage. The scenario itself is fairly short, though the boss fight is long and split into two parts. But, with more Eikon abilities to play with than in previous encounters and an Eikon to awaken as well, it’s time to see what you’re made of.

This guide will provide you with all the information you need to defend against the Garuda winds, including how to beat Garuda during Eikon vs Eikon.

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How to prepare for Garuda in Final Fantasy 16

When you take on Garuda in Final Fantasy 16, you will also have unlocked Garuda’s powers for your own use along with your starting Phoenix abilities. Unlike traditional RPG mechanics, choosing an elemental ability will not be better or worse against an enemy with the same element, so you can definitely use Garuda’s abilities against her.

We highly recommend unlocking Rook’s Gambit, an ability that allows you to jump back to dodge an attack before launching back in with a punishing counterattack. When timed correctly, this counter is even more effective, and even more so if you spend skill points to upgrade it, which will increase the number of hits. Combine this with Gouge, which is very effective at knocking down the will meter and stunning enemies, and you have an excellent combo. If you’re short on skill points, remember that you can reset any skills you’re not using much and then spend those points on your new powers.

Don’t ignore Garuda’s Eikonic ability, which becomes a deadly takedown when a boss is partially stunned when its will gauge has been reduced to 50 percent. The knockdown will give you a good window to cry on them, but you should do so very soon after they go into partial stagger, for which you will also hear a sound effect.

You shouldn’t need to put any effort into preparation since it’s still relatively early in the game, but be sure to stock up on potions and other consumables at the Hideaway, as well as forge new equipment at the blacksmith. If you notice that the new equipment has lower stats than the last equipment you upgraded, you can reinforce it to get all the benefits, if you have the necessary materials, of course.

Once you are prepared, go to the world map and head to the Eye of the Tempest.

How to defeat Garuda in Final Fantasy 16

At first, you’ll chase a hooded figure in this stage, while Garuda occasionally descends to bar your path. Once you reach the end of the stage, a cutscene will begin where Garuda uses his wind magic to throw Clive into the air before grabbing him. You’ll receive a QTE prompt to pressure Square into performing a cinematic attack, before the fight properly begins.

This fight takes place in a fairly small arena space with Garuda kneeling, but still towering over Clive in front with his massive winged claws on either side. As expected, he will use those claws to attack; either by pushing both at the same time down in front of her, or by using one to hit you. It should be clarified that these claws are part of his wings, since she still has arms, which curiously telegraph how his winged claws are going to attack. She can also raise her leg to briefly charge it up before performing a tornado roundhouse kick.

In any case, keep an eye out for these attacks and try to time a dodge precisely, so you can follow up with a counterattack or, better yet, go for the Rook Gambit. You’ll find that you lock onto targets on his head, which you’ll have a hard time hitting with ground attacks alone, so using Phoenix Shift to move up to his head is good for landing a couple of aerial hits.

Still, the damage you deal is a bit negligible, though you’ll notice Garuda’s Will Gauge declining faster. I do use your Eikon abilities like Gouge. Since this will be your first time using Garuda in a boss fight, when you reduce it to 50 percent, a pop-up tutorial will explain the takedown mechanics. ,s So make sure to use Garuda’s Death Embrace to take down the Eikon and ideally have another non-cooldown ability to take advantage of this window.

While you won’t deal much damage when she’s knocked down, the point is to lower her level so she’s properly staggered. Garuda falls to the ground once staggered, leaving her head exposed to all the Eikon combos and abilities you can muster, assuming they’re not all on cooldown if you spent all of them trying to stagger her.

The Burning Blade ability is a very effective alternative to unlock and master in this situation as well. While you charge the attack with Square and then release it to release it (mastering the ability reduces the charge time), you can begin charging another attack in the middle of the animation of the first. That means it’s entirely possible to perform a Burning Blade attack and then have another charge ready to go several frames after the first attack has finished. This way, you can take on a few of these in quick succession while you wait for the cooldown of your most powerful Eikon abilities to reset. If you’ve been efficient, you’ll have reduced Garuda’s health to 50 percent by the time he recovers from the stagger.

Once his health reaches half, Garuda unleashes Aerial Blast where, instead of hunching over you, he waves his magic and sends columns of tornadoes that launch you into the air. During this, you cannot physically reach her, but you can still shoot your own magic spells at her from a distance, with Chared Shots being ideal for this, to continue reducing his will gauge. Mainly, you’ll want to focus on dodging those tornadoes or making sure you have a quick recovery so you can get back up quickly.

After this, the aura will dissipate and Garuda will crouch down again to attack you with his winged claws again. It’s similar to before, except there will also be sporadic columns of tornadoes to watch out for, telegraphed by green and black light.

Continue with the same tactics until you can stagger Garuda, then continue wailing until you have around 5 percent of your health. At this point, the action will transition into the cutscene with some QTEs. You’ll be prompted to press Square to perform a cinematic attack twice, followed by a prompt to press Square to perform a cinematic clash.

At the end of this, a message will appear saying Garuda Slain and you will get 55 Sharp Fang Materials, 100 XP, 100 Skill Points, and 500 Gil. Only it’s not really over. Watch the scene that follows and you’ll get a major reveal in the story. More importantly, the fight against Garuda continues, except this time you’re in control of Eikon Ifrit!

How to defeat Garuda during Eikon vs Eikon in Final Fantasy 16

Whereas Clive was at a disadvantage previously, now it’s a close Eikon vs Eikon kaiju style fight. That said, your Eikon controls are pretty basic here; with Square for melee attacks, Triangle for ranged fireballs, R1 to evade, and Circle for a lunge.

That makes this phase of the fight a little simpler, as you’ll just have to watch out for Garuda’s attacks, evade, and then charge in to crush Ifrit’s attacks. When Garuda retreats, he simply chases after her and continues the assault, being careful to dodge any gusts of wind she fires from a distance.

Garuda also has a Tornado attack, where he sends three tornado pillars at you, which you can dodge. While it’s tempting to hold back and just throw fireball projectiles, although it can cancel out any wind projectile Garuda sends like in a Street Fighter match, aggression works well. Especially since Ifrit’s charge is quite fast, so hurry up and attack hard when you have a chance. At the end of these melee combos, you can also punish even more, as Ifrit will grab Garuda and then punch her like it’s a professional wrestling match.

When he’s at about two-thirds health, Garuda will fly up to unleash Skyfall, where he gathers nearby rocks into a huge boulder to hit you. This triggers a QTE, so he mashes Square to execute a cinematic clash.

After this, Garuda can, just like in the first phase, unleash Aerial Blast, but, like Ifrit, this will be more of an AOE attack that you’ll want to back away from until it’s over. But other than that, the fight will continue more or less the same way.

When Garuda is at one third of his health, the action switches to a scene where the Eikons collide in midair. It’s pretty wild, so we won’t reveal the details, but there will be quite a few QTE hints throughout the game. The first three are to pressure Square for cinematic attacks, followed by three where you smash Square for cinematic showdowns, culminating in Ifrit’s signature Hellfire ability and this time killing Garuda for good.

Garuda reward in Final Fantasy 16

In addition to the rewards for defeating Garuda in the first phase of Final Fantasy 16, successfully killing Garuda earns a rare Wind Shard material that is used to create a new weapon, 60 Wyrrite and 2 Meteorite crafting materials, as well as 400 XP, 200 skill points and 2,500 gil.

More important is the reveal of who Ifrit is and how Clive is going to handle that. However, we’ve still barely scratched the surface of this journey and there’s still so much more to Ifrit, which you’ll discover as you continue through Final Fantasy 16.

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