Staggering enemies is a crucial combat skill in Final Fantasy 16 (FF16) that allows you to gain the upper hand and deal massive damage to your opponents. In this guide, we will walk you through how to stagger in Final Fantasy 16, provide tips and strategies to maximize your stagger damage, and help you become a formidable force in the world of Valisthea.


In Final Fantasy 16, staggering an enemy involves depleting their Will Gauge. The Will Gauge is a yellow bar located beneath an enemy’s nameplate and health bar. This gauge represents the enemy’s will or poise. As you attack an enemy, their Will Gauge depletes. Once it’s fully depleted, the enemy becomes staggered, leaving them temporarily stunned and vulnerable to your attacks.

A full stagger occurs when the Will Gauge is completely depleted. During this state, the enemy falls to the ground and remains defenseless for several seconds, during which you can attack them without any repercussions. The total damage dealt during this period is displayed at the end of the stagger phase.

Updated on July 25, 2023: The FF16 Stagger guide has been updated with new methods that will allow you to deal 200K+ stagger damage. The updates also bring clarity to the topic and will help you perform better in combat.


How to Build Stagger Meter Faster

The most straightforward way to build the stagger meter is by continuously attacking your enemies. However, it’s important to note that the Will Gauge has a midpoint, represented by a pip. Depleting the gauge up to this point will only cause a partial stagger, allowing you a few free hits before the enemy recovers.

For larger enemies and certain bosses, you can use the Deadly Embrace ability from the Garuda Eikon, which you unlock a few hours into the game. This ability pulls the enemy down, leading to a full stagger.

How to Stagger in Final Fantasy 16

To stagger an enemy, you need to focus on depleting their Will Gauge. Different attacks and abilities have varying impacts on the gauge, so understanding which moves are most effective is key to success. Regular attacks with Clive’s sword will gradually decrease the Stagger Gauge, but utilizing specific techniques and Eikonic Abilities will expedite the process.

Use Eikonic Abilities to Stagger

Eikonic Abilities are a powerful tool in your arsenal when it comes to staggering enemies in Final Fantasy 16. These abilities, which can be customized in the Ability Tree, have two-star ratings. The first rating indicates the strength of the move, while the second rating represents its effectiveness in decreasing your opponent’s Stagger Gauge. Striking a balance between these two types of abilities will allow you to stagger enemies more quickly and inflict maximum damage once they are vulnerable. Experiment with different combinations of Eikonic Abilities to find the ones that suit your playstyle and yield the best results.


Best Combat Techniques for Faster Staggering

While regular attacks and Eikonic Abilities contribute to depleting the Stagger Gauge, employing certain battle techniques can expedite the process even further. Precision Dodges, Parries, and combos are all effective techniques that empty the gauge at an accelerated pace. Mastering these techniques and incorporating them into your combat strategy will give you an edge in staggering enemies and dealing significant damage.

Final Fantasy 16 also introduces Cinematic Strikes, Evasions, and Clashes. These are special events that occur during combat, often involving quick-time event (QTE) prompts. Successfully executing these QTEs can lead to staggering bosses.

The Takedown mechanic, introduced during a specific boss fight, allows you to cause a longer stagger instance. When the Will Gauge of an opponent reaches 50%, you can perform a partial stagger, followed by casting the Deadly Embrace skill. This results in Clive latching onto the target and pulling them down, causing a longer stagger.

How to Stagger in FF16 Best Combat Techniques.

Another powerful tool at your disposal is the Limit Break. Activating the Limit Break ability when your opponent is already staggered can obliterate their Stagger Gauge at an astonishing speed. However, it’s important to use the Limit Break strategically, as it consumes a significant amount of your Limit Break gauge. Save it for crucial moments when your opponent is vulnerable, and unleash its devastating power to secure victory in challenging battles.


How to Deal Max Stagger Damage (200K+ Damage)

To deal maximum stagger damage in FF16, you need to have a precise strategy and timing. The goal is to build up your stagger meter as high as possible and then unleash a series of powerful attacks to capitalize on the increased damage multiplier. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. Preparation: Ensure your target has roughly 25% of its stagger bar remaining. You should have a level five Zontetsuken already charged up, and a Wings of Light charged up for a level 4 Mega Flare.
  2. Initiate Stagger: Release the Mega Flare taunt and immediately counter with Raging Fists. This should initiate the stagger.
  3. Increase Stagger Multiplier: After initiating the stagger, switch to Shiva and use Diamond Dust. This won’t do a lot of damage, but it will push the stagger meter up to 1.5, increasing your damage multiplier for subsequent attacks.
  4. Unleash Damage: After using Diamond Dust, activate your limit break and use Judgment Bolt. Then, switch to Odin and release a level 5 Zontetsuken. Cancel your limit break, use Lightning Rod, and then go into Dancing Steel. This will charge up another level five Zontetsuken. Re-engage your limit break, release the second level five Zontetsuken, switch to Bahamut, and release Gigaflare.
  5. Optional Additional Damage: If you’ve timed everything correctly, you might have enough time to fit another Raging Fists into the mix for additional damage.

That’s everything you need to know on how to stagger enemies in FF16 and deal max damage while doing so. We also have a guide on The Akashic Dragon Boss Fight, so don’t forget to check that out before you go.


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