Final Fantasy 16 difficulty options: Action & story-focused modes explained

Final Fantasy 16 difficulty options: Action & story-focused modes explained
Images via Square Enix

Written by 

Harry Boulton


22nd Jun 2023 12:24


Figuring out which of the Final Fantasy 16 difficulty options to pick can be a little confusing, as they deviate from your traditional easy-to-hard scale. With the move to a more action-based combat system, there are a lot of fans of the Final Fantasy series that might not be as confident in pulling off the various combos in the game.

Thankfully, there are some discreet difficulty options available to players, alongside a few in-game accessories to help you customise your experience even further. These should allow any player to pick up and experience the excellent story on offer, regardless of their skill level.

So, make sure to read the rest of this guide below to learn what you should pick between action and story-focused mode in Final Fantasy 16.

What is the difference between action and story-focused in Final Fantasy 16?

Image of Shiva in Final Fantasy 16
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The two main differences between the action-focused and story-focused modes in Final Fantasy 16 are that enemies are more difficult in the former, and you start with two Timely Accessories equipped in story-focused.

It is not made clear how much harder the enemies are in the action-focused mode, but it will give you more of a challenge if that is what you're searching for.

Furthermore, you won't be missing out on the Timely Accessories if you pick action-focused, it is just that two of them are equipped by default in the mode focusing on the story experience.

Which mode to pick in Final Fantasy 16?

Image of the action focused selection in Final Fantasy 16
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We recommend that you pick action-focused mode in Final Fantasy 16, as it is the closest to what the developers ideally intended you to play. However, if you tend to struggle with action combat systems in games, do not feel like you can't pick story-focused so that you don't miss out on experiencing the narrative.

Considering that the majority of Final Fantasy games have featured turn-based combat of some form, it is not inconceivable that some fans of the series won't enjoy the new combat system but will still want to see the story to its end - and in that scenario, story focused mode will be ideal.

As mentioned, the Timely Accessories will be available within action-focused mode too, and you can equip three at any one time. However, the two additional ones that are pre-equipped in story mode will be very helpful if you're struggling.

Can you change difficulty in Final Fantasy 16?

Image of Clive and Murdoch in Final Fantasy 16
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You can change difficulty at any time in Final Fantasy 16 without suffering any penalties or consequences, which is excellent news.

This is great if you come across a boss in Final Fantasy 16 which you are finding especially challenging - and that might happen quite a lot due to the number of tough foes that are scattered throughout Valentia. You can just pop the difficulty onto story-focused to clear the fight, and then return to action focused for the rest of your journey.

How to change difficulty in Final Fantasy 16

Image of Shiva in Final Fantasy 16
Click to enlarge

To change difficulty in Final Fantasy 16, all you need to do is head to the Game Settings tab of the System menu, and switch between the two modes under the Gameplay tab.

If you don't want to commit to the full difficulty switch, however, popping on one of the Timely Accessories will give you a small bonus that can be the difference between beating a boss and falling once more. Are you always being hit by high-damage attacks? Stick on the Ring of Timely Evasion to auto-dodge every enemy attack and stay alive.

So, that's everything you need to know about the story and action-focused modes in Final Fantasy 16, letting you know the differences and which one you should pick.

Check out our dedicated Final Fantasy game page for more content, as we've got lots of news and guides on the new game to keep you up to date.

Harry is a Guides Writer at GGRecon, having completed a Masters of Research degree in Film Studies. Previously a freelance writer for PCGamesN, The Loadout, and Red Bull Gaming, he loves playing a wide variety of games from the Souls series to JRPGs, Counter-Strike, and EA FC. When not playing or writing about games and hardware, you're likely to find him watching football or listening to Madonna and Kate Bush.

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