Enmity, also known as Hate, Aggro, or Threat, is a recurring concept in the more recent games of the Final Fantasy series. A carry over concept from MMORPGs, it is an invisible stat which makes enemies more likely to attack those with the highest Enmity.
Typically, dealing any kind of damage or healing will generate Enmity, and it is up to specific jobs or characters known as Tanks to use abilities such as Provoke to draw attention away from more fragile party members.
Enmity first appears as a term that refers to the hatred an enemy feels for any particular player. In theory, every player in the same area as a creature has an enmity score. A creature will attack the player who has the greatest enmity against. If the creature hates no one, he will generally just stand still, walk a path, or roam depending on how his behavior is set.
Enmity is divided into two types:
- Damage-Volatile Enmity (被ダメージ揮発型敵対心, Hidamējikihatsukata Tekitaishin?) (as called by the dev team), aka Cumulative Enmity (累積ヘイト, Ruiseki Heito?) or CE (as called by the players). This type of enmity is reduced when a monster damages a character, in an amount proportional to the amount of damage taken. It is also reduced by a fixed amount when a monster's attack eliminates a character's shadow image or when a character is enfeebled by the monster.
- Time-Volatile Enmity (時間揮発型敵対心, Jikankihatsukata Tekitaishin?) (as called by the dev team), aka Volatile Enmity (揮発ヘイト, Kihatsu Heito?) or VE (as called by players). This type of enmity decays over time at a constant rate.
The total enmity a monster feels towards a player at any given time is the sum of the two types of enmity. Each type has its own cap.
Enmity (敵対心, Tekitaishin?, lit. Hostile Heart) also appears as a stat appearing on items. When an item mentions that it has "Enmity +(some number)" that means that every attack, spell, or ability used against the creature or in aid of another player who the creature has hatred against will produce more enmity than normal. Gear that increases enmity is sought after by tanks, particularly Ninjas, who lack both abilities to create much enmity on their own or the ability to do great damage. There is also a rare gear stat "reduces enmity decrease when taking damage" which lowers the rate at which damage-volatile enmity is lost.
If an item lists "Enmity -(some number)" then that means an item will make that player's actions generate less hate in a battle situation. These type of items are generally sought after by casters, in particular, White Mages.
A player will lose all enmity in an area when they move from one zone to the next. Enmity can be cleared also under special circumstances. The most common of these are Dragoon's Super Jump ability, Black Mage's Enmity Douse ability, or certain enemy abilities that have the quality Hate Reset (ヘイトリセット, Heito Risetto?). Hate Reset will not clear Aggro, however; the monster will still attack players who gained hate on it, only its target prioritization will change. Character death will also erase enmity.
While never specifically named, Enmity nonetheless has a presence. All damage and in particular healing will generate Enmity, which can be counteracted by a bulkier party member casting Decoy.
Enmity returns, working generally in a similar way to Final Fantasy XI, but with certain differences on the formula used and other factors such as a lack of enmity bonus to the player that first generates enmity against a monster.
The Gladiator, Marauder and Pugilist Disciplines can generate enmity with certain abilities or traits, while Archers and Conjurers are able to reduce their enmity. Enmity generated per action can also be affected by certain gear and Materia with enmity+ or enmity- stats.
Due to the effect of certain abilities, enmity gain / loss may be temporarily halted (for example, Ifrit's Crimson Cyclone in which he jumps out of the screen). Enmity is completely reset when a character is killed.
In A Realm Reborn, almost all abilities players use generate enmity in enemies, how much is scaled by damage dealt to the enemy in question or HP restored to allies. Certain abilities, such as the Gladiator's Flash or the Marauder's Overpower, produce more enmity than usual. Such abilities are often employed by tanks so that they will take damage in place of their allies, while Archers and Conjurers may reduce their own enmity through abilities in their skillset. As in the original version, knocked out characters lose all enmity in their opponents, even if revived.
In a party situation, enmity is shown by a small bar underneath each character's class or job symbol on the party list. The targeted monster will primarily attack the party member whose enmity bar is completely full. Enmity can also be shown on the enemy list; if the symbol by the name of the enemy is a green circle, the enemy's enmity for that player is low, however if it is a red square, the player has produced the highest enmity for that enemy, and will therefore be subject to attack from that enemy.
Note that some enemy abilities will target players in spite of enmity, target certain jobs over enmity (like abilities that always target healers), or even specifically target someone in a different position other than the player with highest enmity (usually these kind of abilities target the 2nd, 3rd or last on the enmity table) and some enemies, such as Giruveganaus, do not follow conventional enmity mechanics at all, always attacking random targets, the first target that damages it only, and so on.
Enmity in this game is called Target Value. Like in Final Fantasy XI, it comes in two types, with targeting being determined by the sum of the two: Fixed Target Value and Reduced Target Value. Reduced target value is decreased by 50% when the character is attacked, and 20% at the end of each round. All of a character's target value of both types is cleared when they are killed, and at the end of every battle. Some enemy attacks, such as status inflicting attacks, will ignore target value, so that Silence will be aimed at spellcasters and status attacks won't usually be aimed at characters who already have the status.