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You think ten years is a long time!? It is nothing to me! I have lived in darkness for ages!
- The man who was to be the first king of Lucis. Assuming the burden of the Starscourge borne by his subjects corrupted the Chosen's body, causing the Crystal to deny his ascendance to the throne. Ardyn's impurities grant him eternal life, which he spends plotting his revenge upon the blood royal and the True King.
- Height: 6 ft. 2 in. Weight: 175.4 lb.
Regardless of whether fighting Ardyn as Noctis in the main game, or Ignis in his DLC episode, the player character will be alone in the party. It is thus recommended to stock up on HP-restoring items, particularly Hi-Potions, Elixirs and Hi-Elixirs. Ardyn wields special red-hued royal arms whose use doesn't drain his health like it does with Noctis.
While Ardyn lacks moves that can instantly kill Noctis, or even take away more than about half of his health in one go, he's nonetheless fast and relentless. He can quickly dish out punishing damage if the player gets careless.
The first stage is a simple sword fight between Noctis and Ardyn in the streets where the party first entered Insomnia (there are no other enemies). Once he has lost 10% of his health, Ardyn will begin using an energy twister attack, which is vulnerable to blocking and countering. Eventually it'll become possible to summon Leviathan, whose attack will move the battle to the next stage, though being the only player character on the field, it can be tricky to carry out the summon before Ardyn kills the player if one is struggling.
Once the player has depleted enough of Ardyn's health, he will restore to full health and begin a new stage of the battle with both Noctis and Ardyn flying through and above the deserted Insomnia, attacking each other with Armiger.
When Ardyn is down to about 5% health, the battle will move into its final phase, with Noctis and Ardyn landing outside the Citadel. Ardyn's attacks become a little stronger than they were in the first phase, but the battle is largely over by this point. After depleting the last of Ardyn's health, the player will get a series of quick time events in which Noctis stabs Ardyn with the royal arms, ending the battle.
It is recommended to be at the suggested Level 45, though a level of around 55 or higher will make the fight easier. During the first battle phase, warp-strikes are a good way of damaging Ardyn, but the player should also try to engage him in close-quarters combat to charge up the Armiger meter, which is perhaps the most effective way to quickly damage Ardyn in this stage.
During the flying phase, if Noctis has sufficiently high maximum HP the player can ignore Ardyn's attacks and unleash Noctis's own on him non-stop, although one may have to use an item or two to restore health. Otherwise, the player must alternate between attacking Ardyn and defending from his attacks.
In the default path of Episode Ignis, the only one the player is allowed to take on the first playthrough, Ignis will battle Ardyn by the ruined altar of Altissia. Though still using Ignis's daggers, his attack power is greatly boosted by the Ring of the Lucii.
Ultimately, how the player fights doesn't matter (so long as they stay alive), as it's an unwinnable battle. When either three minutes have passed, or Ardyn drops to 40% health or lower, the Ring's enchantment wears off, ending the battle.
The battle is relatively straightforward; Ignis should use flame attacks when he's battling Ardyn alone, and either ice or lightning attacks when magitek forces show up to assist Ardyn, though even flame attacks will rapidly decimate Ardyn's reinforcements. The player should only stop to heal, and use Jump and Total Clarity to dish out extra damage whenever the chance presents itself (Overclock is essentially useless, as the extra damage it causes is negligible under the Ring's influence).
Episode Ignis (alternate)Edit
The alternate story branch has Ignis battle Ardyn in Zegnautus Keep. At first, Ardyn attacks Ignis in the Crystal chamber, but he'll just use an Armiger attack and kill Ignis instantly. Ignis then puts on the Ring of the Lucii to battle Ardyn, but it wears off even faster this time, after only around 30–60 seconds. At this point the player is presented with a choice to either give up, risk Ignis's life to gain the full powers of the ring, or sacrifice his life to gain the ring's power; the latter option must be eventually chosen to proceed (the player can choose to risk life twice first), and begins the real battle.
With the full power of the ring now available to Ignis, his attack power increases nearly tenfold. This begins a four-minute countdown to defeat Ardyn, who has an annoying habit of teleporting around the battlefield.
If the player beats Ardyn within the time limit, the game proceeds to the episode's alternate ending to the main storyline. If either Ardyn kills Ignis, or one fails to defeat him before time runs out, the player gets the bad ending and a Game Over.
A glitch can occur in this battle, which causes Ardyn to suddenly resist all of Ignis's attacks. Unless it happens when Ardyn is already close to death, this will make the battle essentially impossible to win, and requires reloading from the last checkpoint to clear the glitch.
If the player attacks him quickly and repeatedly, building up their attack power, Ardyn will soon fall. The player should use Jump whenever available, as this will momentarily stagger Ardyn and allow an opening to cause even more damage.
- In Episode Ignis, Ardyn has a scythe-style weapon that is not one of the royal arms Noctis can collect in the main game.