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- For the term used for inflicting higher damage than usual, see Critical Hit.
- For the status that makes all attacks landed Critical Hits, see: Critical (Status).
Critical (ひんし, Hinshi?), also known as Near Fatal or Anemic, is a status effect that appears in several games in the series. The status does not actually do anything on its own, but is a trigger for a number of items, character abilities, Desperation Attacks, or Limit Breaks. Critical simply refers to a status of being low on Hit Points.
Normally, when in Critical, the characters assume a bent over or crippled position, and their HP is usually at a low percentage displayed in a yellow or red color. In other cases, the characters simply look exhausted.
The spell Tornado is the only way of achieving critical status without dropping the target's HP to 1/16 of their max HP.
Several spells and attacks cause this status effect.
- The Black Magic spell Tornado (called Weak in the SNES version) reduces enemy HP to the single digits.
- The Behemoth ability Maelstrom reduces the entire party's HP to single numbers.
- Cecil's ability Cover automatically makes him take damage whenever a critical party member is physically attacked.
- The Last Stand augment doubles defense when under this status effect (DS).
- The Adrenaline augment doubles physical and magical attack power when under this status effect (DS).
Cecil will automatically cover for allies who are in critical health when he is a Paladin but not when he, himself, is in critical status. Edward will automatically use Hide in critical health, something that leads to a glitch in the game's GBA port.
Critical returns in the sequel of Final Fantasy IV, and functions the same way as it did in its predecessor.
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- The Knight's Cover ability protects critical party members from physical attacks.
- The Mystic Knight's Magic Shell creates a magic barrier that absorbs magical attacks when in a critical state.
- The Geomancer's Gaia can summon a twister (it has the same effect as Maelstrom) on the second world at normal terrain (this ability is useful against the Kuza Beast).
|Doom Claw||Blue Magic||Inflicts Paralyze and Critical.|
|Bone||Enemy Attack||Inflicts Critical.|
|Maelstrom||Enemy Attack||Inflicts Critical.|
|Tail Screw||Enemy Attack||Inflicts Critical.|
- Gives the characters a chance to perform a Desperation Attack.
- The True Knight relic makes the character guard critical party members from physical attacks.
- The Valiant Knife is stronger when Locke is in critical health.
- The Ultima Weapon is weaker when the user is critical, turning the blade into a light object when attacking.
- The spell Tornado indiscriminately puts friends and foes alike in critical status.
- The enemy spell Fallen One/Heartless Angel reduces all party members' HP to 1.
- The status can be acquired by Strago Magus and Gogo when not low on HP by using Rippler (see Rippler Bug for more information).
The critical status decreases the attacker's hit rate on the affected by 25% apart from the game versions affected by the Evade Bug.
- Listed in the manual as both ANEMIC and CRITICAL, HP digits turn yellow when characters hit critical health at below 25% max health and the characters appear exhausted on the screen.
- The sword Ultima Weapon and the megaphone HP Shout are weaker when their wielders are in critical. The Ultimate Weapon turns blue when Cloud is in critical health.
- Tifa's Master Fist and Powersoul weapons double in attack power when she is in critical health.
- The final bosses use several attacks that reduce the party's health to critical.
When Zack is in critical condition the screen flashes and the text "critical" is displayed on the side of the screen in large letters.
- Critical allows the characters a chance of performing Limit Breaks. HP digits turn yellow when critical, and the characters appear exhausted on screen.
- If the party enters battle in critical health, Odin has a bigger chance of appearing.
- Critical health boosts Crisis Level.
- If Rinoa is in the party, Angelo has a chance of performing Angelo Recover on a critical party member.
- Ultimecia's Hell's Judgement reduces the party's HP to 1.
- The Card and Devour commands only works against opponents in critical condition.
- When in critical, the characters appear hunched over and their HP is displayed in yellow.
- Quina's Eat command only works when the target is at critical health.
- Quina's Limit Glove only works when Quina is at critical state, with 1 HP.
- Quina's Matra Magic reduces all targets to critical health, if it hits.
- Beatrix finishes the battles fought against her by striking the player party and leaving them on 1 HP.
Characters gradually look more exhausted as HP is lowered, until they are nearly doubled over. The post-battle comments highlight their tired state. HP digits become yellow below 50% of full health and any SOS Auto Abilities will be activated while in a critical state. The amount of HP affects the strength of several Celestial Weapons, and the Overdrive Mode Daredevil boosts the user's Overdrive gauge every time they get a turn while in critical condition. Auron's Masamune also deals more damage the less HP he has.
Characters fall into the Critical status when their HP falls below a third. Characters appear tired and hunched over when in critical condition. The Aeon enemies also use their Critical stances, identical to the ones from Final Fantasy X, in the same condition. If the player finishes a battle in critical health the party's comments reflect that.
The game features numerous SOS auto-abilities that act when users with the abilities are in Critical. The Cat Nip accessory uses the unique "SOS ????" auto-ability which allows characters in Critical status to inflict 9,999 damage for every attack, regardless of Attack power or enemy Defense. This can be well-utilized with the Trigger Happy and Black Sky commands.
A number of weapons and armors have "latent effects" that are triggered by HP. Some will be triggered at higher HP totals, but many are active only when the player is below 75%, 50%, or 25% of total HP. A near-fatal status may also be commonly referred to as in the red by English-speaking players as the player's HP will display in red text when below 25%.
- "The character is gravely injured but can still move and act normally. Remove by restoring HP."
- —HP Critical
When a character or enemy is in critical state, known as HP Critical, they will flash red. There are several passive abilities that are triggered when the unit is in HP Critical status. Enemies have these innately, and the player can often observe their attack power and defense increasing greatly while in low HP.
The player units can access several of these enhancements by purchasing augments in the License Board or by equipping accessories. The number of hits performed during a hit combo increases drastically when the user is below 6.25% of their max HP. Some enemies, when reaching critical state, gain a massive boost in their overall stats, some may even ready Growing Threat.
There are some enemies in the game that only spawn if the player characters are on critical health. The player will get this status if his/her HP is only 20% left.
Units have no visible HP numbers, but their health bar turns dark red when they have only little HP left.
Whenever a character's HP falls below 25% of their maximum, they fall to an exhaustive posture. Their HP bar will turn red and flash white periodically and the screen will also glow red. Certain accessories grant positive status enhancements when the character falls below the critical threshold. Instead of expiring after the character's HP is recovered, these enhancements expire after a short time has passed, but do not reactivate for the remainder of the battle, even if the character falls below the critical threshold for a second time.
Some synthesized abilities activate when the character's HP falls below ten percent of their maximum HP, such as Low HP: Power Surge, which increases the character's strength and magic. These abilities expire when their HP recovers and can reactivate many times over battle.
The effect is identical to its predecessor; the critical party member has an exhausted posture and the screen gets a red hue. If a party member is KO'ed the screen will keep glowing red. Certain passive abilities, either found innate in Paradigm Pack monsters or via equipment on Noel and Serah, activate when the unit falls in critical status, below 25% of their maximum HP.
- "Heavy damage bringing body on the verge of death. Recover by restoring HP."
- —HP Critical
When a unit reaches Critical status, he/she will kneel down. A character is critical when they are at approximately 1/5 of their max HP. Some bosses flee the battle when brought to this state.
Attacks like the Templar's Vengeance are stronger in critical (since damage depends on Max HP to current HP difference). Being attacked by a critical attack can also lead to the trigger of some abilities, such as the Samurai's Bonecrusher, which deals the character's maximum HP as damage.
Characters in critical will kneel down. When equipped with the appropriate Reaction abilities, the units may receive enhancements when they reach critical state, such as Last Berserk.
The Hunter ability Aim:Vitals may reduce a character's HP to 1.
HP Critical status is unchanged from Final Fantasy Tactics Advance. However, this status does help raise the power of Tenacity (when on the user) and Traumatize (when on the target).
When in critical health the battle theme changes in tone and the characters' HP numbers are displayed in yellow. The boss music also changes when the boss is in low health. The Beastmaster can capture enemies that are in critical health. The Paladin's Last Stand ability lets the character stay alive at 1 HP for a number if turns, and the Dark Fencer's ultimate ability lets the character unleash Darkside until they have only 1 HP remaining. The Shaman's ultimate ability reduces both the enemies' and the player party's HP to 1.
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Near Death occurs when a player's HP falls below twenty-five percent and is shown by a red HP bar and a frequent high-pitched bell sound. The Achy ability increases this boundary. Certain other extra support abilities such as Magic Shield, Physical Shield, and Back to the Wall only activate when in near death status.
A character also enters Near Death if his opponent's Bravery is enough to defeat him with a single blow, even if that character has large HP.