Enemy abilities are abilities that are usable by enemies and are a recurring feature in the Final Fantasy series. Several abilities can be learned as Blue Magic while others can only be learned by methods such as Controlling, confusing, or even giving MP to the monster.
Enemy abilities cannot be used by the player in the original installment. The majority of spells and skills used by enemies are the renamed or reanimated version of spells and skills used by the characters. Several attacks were renamed in the original versions, such as Holy originally being named FADE due to censorship issues, and Temper being named TMPR due to space issues. Very few attacks were of elemental nature in this installment as well, mainly focusing on non-elemental damage and the Poison status.
As with the original Final Fantasy, most of the enemy abilities exhibited in the second game in the series are renamed, remodeled, or reanimated versions of spells the player may obtain. The skill/spell "Enemy Ability" does not appear in this game. Many of these attacks are also non-elemental in nature, with few exceptions, and vary greatly from one version to another, such as Fire V and Fire VIII.
As with the player's spells, enemies require MP equal to the ability's level in order to use it. As a result, depleting the enemy's MP will prevent them from using their abilities.
Several enemy abilities in the game, if not half of them, are elemental in nature, and all have unique animations to separate them from player spells in both versions. However, not all enemy abilities have animations in the NES version, such as Mind Blast and Barrier Shift.
Many of the attacks used by enemies in this installment are of non-elemental nature, with their names changing greatly from one version to another, despite being the same in the Japanese version of the game. It is interesting to note that many attacks here are the first attacks to actually focus on dealing percentile damage, such as Blitz dealing damage equal to 1/10 of a character's Max HP each time it hits. The game puts a heavy emphasis on physical attacks over special attacks as well.
Many of the same abilities return for the sequel to Final Fantasy IV. All abilities appearing in this game have the same function as the previous game.
Final Fantasy V marks the first time enemy abilities can be used by the player with the introduction of the Blue Mage. Blue Magic has appeared as a feature in many of the later installments. There are several attacks that are not named when used, such as ???? and Strong Attack, even when controlling a monster. Poison remains the most common status ailment in monster attacks.
Some enemy abilities can be learned as Rages by Gau. Strago can also learn several enemy abilities as Lore. Final Fantasy VI added many "special" or magic attacks to the physical attacks that were dominant in previous installments. Imp is often used as enemy attacks, as with Poison. Several enemies now prefer using elemental and status attacks over non-elemental attacks. The Lore Rippler has the effect of exchanging statuses between the caster and the target.
However, there were some mistakes in the coding that caused Trance, Dance, KO, Rage, Near Fatal, Freeze, Control, Hidden, Interceptor, Petrify, and Magitek to be able to be switched. A second bug caused Rippler to hit with 100% accuracy even when it claimed to miss. This was fixed in the Advance port.
Enemy Abilities can only be made usable through the use of the Enemy Skill Materia. In Final Fantasy VII, a total of 24 Enemy Skills are available. Some skills are only used by certain bosses, and thus there is limited opportunity to obtain some skills. Several attacks are not named until an enemy with that ability is Manipulated. The Enemy Skill Pandora's Box is only used as a Final Attack by the first Dragon Zombie the player encounters and thus there is only one opportunity to obtain it.
Elemental attacks continue to increase in number along non-elemental attacks, though physical attacks are the most common. Poison, Blind, and Confuse are the most common status-related enemy skills in this installment.
Final Fantasy VII contains several enemy ability-related bugs. Adamantaimai tries to use Cure when buffed with both Barrier and MBarrier, despite not having the spell, resulting in a glitch. In another instance, Tonberry's Time Damage, which deals damage equivalent to playing time. Due to Time Damage being only a counter attack to the third attack after Tonberry's last turn, the conditions for this move usually can't be met when fighting Tonberry on the Battle Square with just one party member, and therefore the ability is very difficult to obtain.
Most of the enemy abilities' names can be seen when the enemy uses them. However, most normal physical attacks' names are not revealed to the player. Many attacks are taken from the original Final Fantasy VII, although they are always slightly different due to a completely different battle system in Crisis Core. In Crisis Core, the player may dodge and block all enemy abilities with careful timing.
In Final Fantasy VIII, every attack an enemy makes is an enemy ability except for its basic physical attack. These abilities include both physical and magical attacks. When an enemy ability is used, its name will appear on-screen. Some can be used by the player through Quistis's Limit Break Blue Magic, though certain items must be used on Quistis first.
This also marks the first time attacks can hit the player more than once, as seen by Omega Weapon's Terra Break attack. Physical attacks are used more often than the enemy's special attacks, though several special attacks are deadlier than in previous installments, such as Death.
Due to Final Fantasy VIII's battle system, where enemies' levels depend on the player's party, the enemies possess different skills and abilities depending on what level they are fought. Tonberry's LV Down/Up skill can further affect the enemy's AI. The enemies also have hidden conditions for certain attacks, such as Ruby Dragon's Breath attack, which it won't use if the player's party has only two active members (third party member is not present or is knocked out). Ruby Dragon will also cast Reflect on itself and casts magic on itself to reflect back to the player, but only if the player casts Reflect on themselves first.
All abilities used by enemies in Final Fantasy IX are each given names, including basic physical attacks. This game's Enemy Ability user is the Blue Mage Quina who may cast Blue Magic after Eating or Cooking the enemies that cast them.
Many abilities in this game are stronger versions of the game's weaker abilities, such as 10,000 Needles being a stronger version of 1000 Needles, and 99,999 Needles being the strongest version of 1000 Needles. Stronger versions of abilities tend to be more powerful than weaker versions. All enemy abilities are named in this version, and many can be learned by Kimahri by using the Lancet skill on specific enemies.
As the same fiend-genera reappeared in this game, a lot of the enemy abilities are shared with those in the preceding game. As with Final Fantasy X, many abilities have stronger and weaker counterparts, which are more and less powerful, respectively. Many attacks in this game are also percentile-based, dealing damage based on usually either 25%, 50%, or 75% of a character's max HP. Multiple hits return as a feature for some attacks, such as Angra Mainyu's Perdition's Flame attack.
Final Fantasy X-2 introduced the Gun Mage dressphere, which allows the character to learn enemy abilities when hit by them. The Gun Mage can then use said abilities from the Blue Bullet list in battle. Some abilities can only be learned under certain conditions; for example, Mega Tonberry will only use Cry in the Night when in Oversoul, and Baralai must be attacked ten times before he will unleash Drill Shot.
This game has a very large amount of Enemy Magicks and Technicks. The player can't learn Blue Magic, but enemies often use the same spells the party can obtain. The enemies are also capable of attacking in combos, but the chance of this depends on the enemy in question. Yiazmat can manage combos up to 12 hits.
The computer scripted actions are called Gambits. Although the enemies' gambits are invisible to the player, one can often detect a pattern to their actions, such as an enemy always attacking the party member closest to it. The ability to erect a paling is exclusive to certain enemies, making them invulnerable to either magickal attacks, physical attacks, or both. Certain enemy attacks can also knock the player back, preventing them from counterattacking.
While all enemy Yarhi have the same abilities as the ones the player summons, monsters and enemy sky pirates have their own special abilities. However, leader sky pirates may have abilities available or similar to player characters' abilities. Enemy monsters' abilities are generally exclusive to them. Many commonly recurring abilities from the series can only be used by enemy sky pirates in Revenant Wings.
Enemy abilities in Final Fantasy XIII can't be learned by the party. The enemies execute commands in chains like the party does, although the only opponent who can paradigm shift is Cid Raines. Some enemy abilities can launch party members into the air. If the enemy itself is launched, it is unable to take action. Regular physical attacks aren't named, but whenever an enemy is using a special attack its name is displayed on the screen. Ultima, a recurring spell in the series, is an enemy attack in Final Fantasy XIII only used by the toughest of foes.
All enemy attacks have names and are displayed on-screen before being executed, giving player cue when to use guard or evade abilities. Enemy attacks cannot be learned by player. Some enemy attacks can interrupt the player's actions, or launch Lightning.
Unlike most other games, enemy abilities are divided by race, generic monsters, and the Lucavi. Human opponents use skills available to their respective job classes, although there are special enemy opponents who have unique job classes unattainable to the player, and thus can use abilities the player can't learn. There is no Blue Magic, although certain spells and summons can be learned by being hit with the spell.
Bio magic is enemy exclusive in Tactics, although a character with the Magic Counter can still counterattack with a Bio spell. The player can gain access to the enemies attacks by taming monsters and breeding them and then using them in battle.
Tactics Advance monsters have their own exclusive skillsets which are different according to the monster's type. They can be used by Beastmasters when controlling the enemies, and some of the abilities from those skillsets can be learned by any Hume equipped with the Blue Mage passive ability Learning.
Bosses such as the Totema have skillsets that are exclusive to themselves and unusable by the player in any way. Those skillsets may, however, hold abilities learnable by some of the five races.
Like in Tactics Advance, monsters have their own abilities and Beastmasters can use them by controlling monsters. Humes can also learn some of them via the Blue Mage Learn ability. Bosses have exclusive abilities that are not accessible to the player.
Unlike the other games in the series, Final Fantasy Mystic Quest has a special battle mechanic where every enemy attack is associated with an element. Physical attacks are also considered a type of elemental attack, and those that do not fit within these 8 are considered non-elemental.
Enemy abilities are mostly compose of projectiles with only a few melee attacks. If Sumo collides with the enemy or the enemy collides with him, Sumo will take damage.
Enemy abilities can be used by allied monsters who have learned an ability by eating monster meat and transforming. A few enemy abilities are enemy exclusive and cannot be learned by the player or the players' monsters, however.
Like in the previous game, enemy abilities can be used by allied monsters who have learned an ability by eating monster meat and transforming. A few enemy abilities are enemy exclusive and cannot be learned by the player or the players' monsters, however.
Enemy abilities can also be used by allies who have transformed into specific monsters. These monster skills are located in the Talent menu. A few enemy abilities are enemy exclusive and cannot be used by the player.
Unlike other games in the series, all abilities will knock-out a party member in one hit, regardless of the type of attack. Several abilities may even target more than one character.