Ability Points, often shortened to AP or ABP, but also called Magic AP, Magic Points, License Points, shortened to LP and Job Points or JP for short, are a system created by Hiroyuki Ito and used to learn abilities. They are usually gained from battles. Generally, the player will not get very many Ability Points from battle unless they are in the final dungeon or in a special area where Ability Points are plentiful.
Every character has a hidden stat (Job Points) that dictates their job's level growth. When JP is accumulated to 99, the current job level goes up by 1. Every action (turn) the character(s) take in a battle, except for Front, Rear, Run, and Flee, will contribute a fixed amount of job points to the character(s).
The character(s) must perform an action during battle to be rewarded with JP; simply selecting an action and not performing it before the end of battle will not reward those character(s) with JP for those inputted actions. However, the action does not need to be successful for it to award JP (i.e. Using status inflicting spell on an enemy regardless of whether the status has been inflicted or not, stealing unsuccessfully or, doing 0 damage will still award JP). Also, only one level up can occur per battle even though the JP cap per battle is 199.
The left side being how much that job earns for character's current job is under level 14 when performing an action. The right side being how much they earn for jobs currently after level 15 when performing an action.
The amount of JP gain per job are as follow:
|Job||Job Level 1-14||Job Level 14+|
ABP is used to level up the current job class. The character learns either a Command or a Support ability, which they can then use while utilizing other jobs.
Magic AP (originally Magic Points) is used to learn spells from espers. Each Magic AP gives a certain percentage of spell to character that has an esper equipped. After reaching 100%, they learn the spell permanently. Every spell has a different growth rate.
Characters that can earn Magic AP in battle are the only ones who can dispel the curse on the Cursed Shield. Since Gogo cannot learn magic nor equip espers, s/he cannot earn Magic AP in battle. Theoretically, the same would happen to Umaro if he could equip shields. All guest characters cannot earn any Magic AP.
AP earned from battles is coded into the encounter, not the enemy.
AP is used to increase the level of Materia. This allows the Materia to have more spells, or abilities. When the Materia is Mastered, a replica Materia at level 1 will be created. Barret's ultimate weapon, the Missing Score's power is increased by the amount of AP on the Materia it is holding.
AP is instead an MP-like stat that allows Zack to perform basic blocking and dodging, and also consumed by using special physical attacks and abilities with the appropriate Command Materia. The item Soma is used to recover lost AP, and is instantly recovered with an Elixir.
AP is used to make Guardian Forces learn abilities.
AP is used to learn abilities embedded in equipped equipment. If a character equips several items which teach the same ability, AP growth is increased for that particular ability.
Equipping the Ability Up support ability doubles the AP earned.
At the end of the battle, characters that are KO'd or afflicted with the Virus status will not receive AP.
AP in this installment replaces the usual role of EXP. The Ability Points (AP) gained will allow the player to gain Sphere Levels, which are used to move around the Sphere Grid. Sphere levels equal the amount of steps each character can take on the Sphere Grid, similar to classic board games. The amount of AP needed to generate a S.LV progressively increases until the character has got 101 S.LV, and thereafter always will require 22,000 AP to generate a new S.LV.
When starting a file two Sphere Grid modes are available and only one can be selected: 'Standard' mode has strict, rarely-diverging routes for each character, but bears more clear nodes (which can be filled with attribute slots later through use of special spheres). 'Expert' mode has less clear spaces, but its layout is considerably less strict, allowing characters to diverge from their traditional routes from the beginning.
Each step taken on the Sphere Grid to a new node deducts a single Sphere Level from their total levels, and one level can be expended to move backwards by up to four nodes which have already been crossed. 'Spheres' can be used to activate nodes on the characters' current position or adjacent nodes, most of which raise a certain attribute or teach an ability, but some of which are blank.
Each character has a general path which they are expected to follow but these routes have many branching point, allowing the player to customize characters to their liking, for the most part. Development is limited by the presence of locked nodes, which require a rare 'Key Sphere' of a certain level to open: these range from levels 1 to 4 and generally, higher numbers equal rarer spheres which become available at a later point in the story.
Characters that do nothing in battle gain no AP. Similarly, if one swaps characters out during a battle, all characters that took action, even skipped their turn by the press of the , will gain AP. AP is not split between party members, so no matter how many participants perform actions in any single battle, all will obtain the same value of AP upon victory.
Certain equipment modifications can change the behavior of AP gain, such as Overdrive → AP which speeds up AP gain based on that character's Overdrive setting while reducing Overdrive gain to 0. This can be used in conjunction with the abilities Double AP / Triple AP and Double Overdrive / Triple Overdrive to farm massive amounts of AP from specific enemies such as Don Tonberry and the Cactuar King in a short amount of time.
There are four ways to gain AP used to learn the abilities of the equipped dressphere; Perform a special action unique to a dressphere, use an ability equipped on a Garment Grid or an accessory, defeat an enemy, and use an item. For each of the mentioned actions taken, 1 AP is awarded. However, the action must have an effect (i.e. Cure must restore HP, Poison must poison the enemy, etc).
AP is capped at 99 per battle. Defeated enemies award 1 AP for all party members, not just the one who defeated it. Oversouled enemies award 2 AP each.
Characters who have reached level 99 in their job may continue to advance by earning Job Points. Job Points are acquired by earning Capacity Points (a deliberate reference to the original version of Final Fantasy III), which are acquired by defeating high level monsters while in that particular job (each job has its own Capacity Point and Job Point totals). 30000 Capacity Points earns one Job Point. Like Merit Points, Job Points are spent on permanent enhancements for the character's job. Unlike Merit Points, there is no cap on how many such enhancements may be purchased. In fact, at specific totals of Job Points spent, the job gains additional permanent enhancements known as Gifts. Once a total of 2100 Job Points have been spent, the character masters the job.
License Points, abbreviated LP, are points gained by defeating enemies and are used to buy licenses. To wield, wear or master anything, a license must first be bought. After buying the license, one will become able to wield the weapon, wear the armor/hat/helm or master the Magick or Technick that the license was for, granted that the specific item has been bought as well.
One must likewise buy the license of Esper, to be able to summon it. However, when one character has bought the summon license, s/he will be the only one with the license to that summon, as it disappears completely from the License Board of the other characters. The same goes for Quickenings.
EXP and AP points are not separate, but, rather, the two are rolled into one with the use of Crystogen Points (known as Crystal Points in the Japanese version). CP is gained by winning battles and used to increase character attributes and to learn new abilities in Crystarium system. The maximum amount of CP a character can hold is 999,999. Crystogen Points are gained from all battles, boss and regular battles alike, but the party will not gain any CP before they become l'Cie in the third chapter; battles won in chapters one and two just gain item drops. Even after mastering the Crystarium system party members keep gaining CP from battles.
Serah and Noel gain CP from battles since the beginning and can use them to gain new abilities and stat boosts in the Crystarium system. Paradigm Pack monsters do not gain CP from battles, but must be given items to advance them through their Crystaria. Lightning, who is playable in the prologue, will not gain CP from her battles, but if she is obtained as a Paradigm Pack monster, she can be advanced in the Crystarium system similar to other Paradigm Pack monsters.
The party can earn AP for the Ascension Trees based on the cumulative number of battles fought, some enemies being worth more AP than others. As with experience points, AP are tallied with each night's rest. Certain quests may also award additional AP based on their difficulty.
AP may be awarded with certain enemies shot. AP are primarily used to master the various skills available to each unit when combined with the elemental orbs obtained in each quest. Because the amounts are generally small, it may be wise to boost AP totals when needed with an Arcane or Divine Hourglass prior to starting a quest.
A unit earns Job Points when performing actions. Other units with access to the same job also earn Job Points (referred to as spillover JP). Earning JP can be enhanced with the Gained JP Up support ability and Move-Get JP movement ability, as well with further level ups and job level ups. JP are also gained from completing propositions. With JP, the player is able to access new skills and spells for the unit, as well unlocking new jobs when meeting the proper job level requirements.
In the original PS version, there is a JP scroll glitch that lets the player get 9,999 JP without effort.
Ability Points are gained from successfully completing missions. Unlike Experience Points, Ability Points are credited towards any unmastered abilities a unit is trying to learn. The amount of Ability Points vary from mission to mission, and can be doubled with the use of an Insignia, or quadrupled with two.
Common Missions' AP AwardsEdit
- All Clan Engagements - 50 AP
- All Turf Liberations (battle while under attack) - 80 AP
- All Turf Liberations (dispatch after losing turf) - 50 AP (more for Jagds)
- #205 Materite - 30 AP
- #207 Metal Hunt - 30 AP
Common Quests' AP AwardsEdit
- All Normal Quests (Non-Battle) - 10 AP
- All Normal Quests (Battle) - 30 AP
- All Storyline Quests - 80AP
The amount of AP received per quest can be boosted by the Clan Privilege AP↑1/2/3, which boosts AP gained from a quest by 20/40/60 respectively. However, if the law is broken during the battle, the increase will be annulled. The AP from non-battle quests cannot be boosted as clan privileges are not granted.
Agito Points (AP) are earned by characters and Eidolons at level up to learn new abilities. The amount earned per level is fixed, but there is enough AP to ensure all abilities are learned before or at the max level of 99.
By completing certain conditions in battle, players will receive bonuses:
- Win a battle without taking any damage.
- Players will earn a few more job points.
- Unscathed Ace
- Satisfy the condition for Unscathed five times in a row.
- Players will earn more job points.
- Unscathed Hero
- Satisfy the condition for Unscathed ten times in a row.
- Players will earn many more job points.
AP is used to level up a character's job and can be obtained by defeating enemies. The scale of AP needed to level up is different for each job, but is the same for all characters respectively. Each level up will sometimes acquire the character an ability that can be equipped with any other job once it is learned.
Ability Points are used to master abilities and are gained by winning a battle. Mastering abilities will lower their CP cost allowing the character to equip more abilities. The amount of Ability Points acquired after battle can be manipulated by AP Chances, which when triggered will add an additional 2 Ability Points to the total AP gained, as well as calendar bonuses. Certain equipment such as the Diamond equipment can increase bonuses even further.
The AP system is virtually the same as Dissidia. The only difference is the AP Chance, which varies from battle to battle. The character can gain from one to three AP from the AP chance; the more AP that must be gained, the higher HP damage must be dealt. To meet the AP chance the player must not take any single hit (BRV/HP) from the opponent before executing the HP damage.