Dissidia 012: Duodecim Final Fantasy Character Basics Guide

Decide who to choose as your main with our basics guide on all 31

Terra Branford

First appeared in: Final Fantasy VI

Combat proficiency: Long-range, magic

Strengths

As far as magic casters go, Terra’s a pretty solid choice. Her attacks are most effective from mid or long range. Her Holy spell has decent tracking and can combo into Ultima for a quick HP attack transition, while Fire, Blizzard Combo and Blizzara are useful for putting some distance between yourself and the opponent.

Weaknesses

Though Terra has some great abilities, most of them have a slow start-up speeds -- especially Graviga. Though it’s a powerful attack and useful when line of sighting opponents, you’re completely vulnerable for the few seconds it takes to actually launch it. Because Terra usually requires an open area with room to move, landing a win can be difficult in cramped stages.

Learning curve: Easy

Tifa Lockhart

First appeared in: Final Fantasy VII

Combat proficiency: Close / mid-range, melee

Combat proficiency: Close / mid-range, melee

Strengths

Tifa's a great offensive character with quick attacks that can easily overwhelm an unsuspecting opponent. Aside from powerful strikes, she also has the ability to feint during the middle of an attack – a properly timed feint is perfect for tricking your enemies into guarding prematurely, leaving them open for a punishment attack – Waterkick can combo with Somersault, which is a great HP transition after you've built up your bravery pool.

Weaknesses

Getting used to feinting properly is quite difficult and takes a bit of practice. Though her ground game is top notch, Tifa's air game is lacking, so keep the fight on the ground whenever possible. Some of her HP attacks can be difficult to land, so familiarize yourself with the ones you find most useful.

Learning curve: Moderate

Tidus

First appeared in: Final Fantasy X

Combat proficiency: Close / mid-range, melee

Combat proficiency: Close / mid-range, melee

Strengths

Sometimes defense is the best offense, and Tidus has a skillset well suited for dodging and countering. His Stick & Move and Cut & Run abilities allow for an immediate counter following a dodge. Effectively chaining these abilities with an assist and following up with Sonic Buster nets a ton of bravery damage -- even more if it ends up in a wall rush -- making the opponent vulnerable to Tidus’ tracking HP attacks.

Weaknesses

Getting used to dodging to open up for Tidus’ counters can be daunting for inexperienced players. Additionally, chaining his abilities together effectively takes some getting used to.

Learning curve: Moderate

Ultimecia

First appeared in: Final Fantasy VIII

Combat proficiency: Long-range, magic

Combat proficiency: Long-range, magic

Strengths

Ideal for dominating inexperienced opponents, Ultimecia is a deadly long-range fighter. Knight’s Arrow can be used as a defensive trap or for building offensive pressure, while abilities such as Knight’s Axe and Knight’s Blade have decent tracking and ultra-long range. If your opponent gets too close, use Knight’s Lance to quickly push them away and build some distance.

Weaknesses

Ultimecia is the definitive ranged character. She moves very slowly, while sluggish start-up times plague most of her abilities. Letting an opponent get too close can quickly result in a loss. Her HP attacks can easily be dodged and have long cast times, so be sure to build distance and apply some pressure before launching one.

Learning curve: Moderate

Vaan

First appeared in: Final Fantasy XII

Combat proficiency: Close / mid-range, melee and projectiles

Strengths

A jack-of-all-trades, Vaan has a large arsenal of weapons to adapt to various situations. Most of his abilities are fast and inflict moderate damage. His Crossbow ranged attack hits pretty hard, and several of his bravery moves can break through an opponent’s guard. Switching weapons produces different effects: His Sword & Shield ability blocks attacks and switching to Spear draws nearby enemies within melee range.

Weaknesses

Vaan’s HP attacks have slow start-up speeds and are a bit unwieldy, though Torrent is usually reliable.

Learning curve: Moderate

Warrior of Light

First appeared in: Final Fantasy

Combat proficiency: Close-range, melee

Strengths:

With a solid ground and air game at his disposal, Warrior of Light is a well-balanced character capable of doling out some serious pain. Sword Thrust is great for closing the gap between your opponent, leaving him vulnerable to Crossover or Ascension, which can combo into Rune Saber for some HP damage. Shield Strike and Dayflash are good for air control, and some of his HP attacks, like Shining Wave and Radiant Sword, have decent range and tracking.

Weaknesses:

A skilled opponent can dodge many of Warrior of Light’s abilities, and casters will have no trouble kiting you.

Learning curve: Easy

Learning curve: Easy

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