PLEASE NOTE AS OF THE 1.19 PATCH BATTLE REGIMENS WILL NO LONGER WORK. AS I DO NOT PLAY FFXIV ANYMORE (THOUGH I MAY COME BACK) I PROBABLY WILL NOT BE MAKING A GUIDE FOR THE REVISED SYSTEM. I HOPE THIS GUIDE HAS BEEN HELPFUL FOR ALL OF YOU AND I WISH YOU WELL IN YOUR JOURNEYS THROUGH EORZEA.
Greetings Zam community. I am Poe Grandemalion from Besaid, part of the linkshell Wandering Flames. I have been greatly interested in the potential of the Battle Regimen system ever since I started FFXIV. However...finding information on it was difficult and what I could find was often not very helpful or cryptic in nature. Battle Regimens were bugged when FFXIV first came out and I don't think many people have revisited them since, even though SE did put out a list of Battle Regimens, what skills are needed and how to execute them. However, I feel that more detail is needed on the subject, especially translating what the effects actually mean and how they can best be used in battle. So here I am, looking to shine some light on the subject so everyone can begin using this awesome system to their advantage.
Before I begin, I would like to give shout-outs to the following people who without them this guide would not be possible.
Atrayl Openstar-The first member of Wandering Flames to actually WANT to engage and learn the Battle Regimens with me.
Tabitha Jones-One of the best Thaumaturgist I have played with, keeping us alive while everyone was getting the chains down.
Lady Katsa -My fiancee who just LOVES punching things in the throat for massive damage.
Galen Marek- Who after I showed the potential of battle regimens decided to make them in every party since, giving me plenty of questions to fortify this guide with.
Sword Saint- For giving me some feedback with Archer skills and abilities.
Acacia Tyrannia- For being an awesome tank, reminding me of Cadence and being a cool guy to hang around and talk with.
Asanna Callani and Zephyr Tempest- For having such an awesome linkshell and allowing me to post this guide for everyone.
These people have tested and dealt with my growing curiosity on the subject and put a lot of time into making sure I understood what was going on and helped make sure my data was accurate. Thanks guys and gals!
Chapter 1: What IS a Battle Regimen?
Battle Regimens (hereto known as BRs) are the FFXIV version of the Skillchain, a system which combined each party members weapon skills to create a myriad of effects. Skillchains often made the difference between 3 minute fights and 30 second fights. So what are they here in the land of Eorzea?
Well, BR's are now a lot easier to execute. There is no real timing to it, just a bit of coordination is all that is necessary. Also, these aren't really efficient on mobs that die quickly (low grade leve mobs, grinding mobs, etc) because by the time you initiate it, the mob is close enough to death. Behest probably will not see any use in these either as the mobs usually die really fast due to 8 people beating it. However, there are some leve mobs during high star guildleves and Notorious Monsters that will see a big use of the Regimen system. And as easy as it is to initiate, why shouldn't you be doing it?
Chapter 2: How to EXECUTE the Battle Regimen?
Keyboard and Controller users have two different ways of executing the Battle Regimen. Controller users, IMO, have it much easier, as it only requires two button presses to initiate. However, I will explain it for both (considering most of my help were keyboard users.) However, both users must follow the same first step. You MUST have initiated an offensive action against the mob first. This can be something as harmless as Taunt, but you must act against it before BR will work. This prevents 15 people from stacking attacks and beating stuff before it can even run to you (despite that being awesome...but cheap). After that, read below for your tool of choice:
Setting Up Battle Regimen, Controller Version.
Picture here: http://i1106.photobucket.com/albums/h361/AureliousSilverbreeze/BattleRegimenGuidePics/BattleRegimenController.png
*You can also press "G" on the keyboard to begin a battle regimen if for some reason when you press start it keeps opening the menu instead of doing the regimen (happens to me once in a while)
Setting Up Battle Regimen, Keyboard Version.
Picture here: http://i1106.photobucket.com/albums/h361/AureliousSilverbreeze/BattleRegimenGuidePics/nobrmode.jpg
1. This is what you will click to begin Battle Regimen Mode. You know you are successful if your icon turns pink, as in the picture below.
Picture here: http://i1106.photobucket.com/albums/h361/AureliousSilverbreeze/BattleRegimenGuidePics/bractive.jpg
2. After Battle Regimen mode is turned on, the next skill chosen will be the one stacked. If it is a magic spell, then you will begin the casting animation but before the spell casts you will stop. This way when the chain begins, you immediately lash out with the spell. **While in Battle Regimen Mode, you cannot select a self-target or a Healing skill, as those are not able to be stacked in the Regimen**
3. Once all skills are stacked (as above) just click the Battle Regimen Button (It will now say Begin Battle Regimen whereas before it was Battle Regimen Mode) and everyone will execute their skill at once. Only one person needs to begin the Regimen, so make sure everyone knows who that is (and they wait for all skills to stack.) Also, you can press "G" (default) on the keyboard to begin the regimen as well.
**Edited Note: I wanted to add something posted by Rupskul over on the Core version of this Guide. He says that for keyboard users, you can hold the shift key while pressing your skill hotkey to automatically stack it without clicking on the BR button first! This makes it much more streamlined for keyboard users, and I recommend using it.**
And there you have it! Keyboard users have a few more steps to follow, but overall it is simple once you get the grasp of it.
Setting Up Battle Regimen, Macro Version
Yes, you can even make a macro for Battle Regimens! This is worth it when there is a dedicated effect you want to have (see effects below). The setup will look like this.
Line 1: /br
Line 2: /ac "Action Here" <t>
Line 3: /p "Action Here" stacked and ready to go!
Line 1 tells the system to click on the BR button (activating it), Line 2 tells it what skill you want to use, and Line 3 tells the party (which should know anyway) that you are stacked and ready. Then whoever initiates the BR does their thing and away it goes!
Of course, you can make your macros a bit more...in-depth. Such as adding Ferocity, Raging Strike, Cadence. just place them before the /br command and you'll be set!
Once the Battle Regimen is started, all attacks in the chain will execute in the order they were stacked. All 15 party members can be engaged in a Battle Regimen at one time, and all Regimens can be initiated in one giant Regimen (though I honestly do not suggest this, as regimens should be left to a team who knows how to coordinate them well.)
And there you go. Now that you know how to do it and what each step looks like, it's almost time to learn how they work! However, first I should mention the limitations or other limiting factors of Battle Regimens.
Chapter 3: Limitations of Battle Regimens
This chapter is small as there are few reasons to NOT initiate a BR, but for the sake of completeness, I am listing them here.
1: You are stuck while waiting to initiate the Regimen
What this means is once you have selected the skill to stack, you can no longer do any actions until the BR is complete. So if you stack Thunder and suddenly someone goes into the red, your Cure is not going to go off. A message will appear in purple (default color) telling you that battle regimen mode is active and cannot be selected at this time. The only way past this is to click the button to initiate the BR (it will still work solo, but no effect will occur) and THEN you can cure. So make sure there is a backup healer or everyone is topped off before beginning a regimen, especially if you are the healer!
2: You must stay within range of the enemy
This one can be a bit hard to pin down. You must remain in the range of your attack for it to work. If you stack Heavy Slash and then run behind the Thaumaturge 15 feet away and someone intiates the regimen...you aren't going to hit it. This is less improtant for Disciple of Magic and Archers, but an important point none-the-less.
3: Once Battle Regimen mode is active, anything that self-targets is unavailable
A lot like #1, but any action that targets yourself (Bloodbath, Raging Strike, Cure/Sacrifice) is not selectable during a battle regimen (mainly becuase Battle Regimen is an offensive action, so a defensive/healing action cannot be used here.) So make sure you activate Raging Strike+Ferocity+BloodBath+Cadence+Still Precision BEFORE beginning the Battle Regimen.
4: The attack MUST connect in order for the regimen to work!
If you played FFXI, nothing screwed a skillchain more than someone missing. The same goes here. If the first person in the chain misses, then the second person in the chain will be considered first. So the first two attacks that connect will create the effect.
Example: if 4 people all stack a basic attack, only two of them need to connect for Regimen of Ruin to land. The first two attacks that land will create the effect.
Now, to set up an interesting example.
Example: Normal Attack + Normal Attack +Weapon Skill+ Normal Attack + Magic Spell
The first two Normal Attacks will create the Regimen of Ruin effect. Normal Attack + Weapon Skill creates Regimen of Constraint. But I used Normal Attack already, right? Wrong. In the chain Normal Attack + Normal Attack + Weapon Skill, the second Normal Attack functions for both Ruin (Attack + Attack) AND Constraint (Attack + Weaponskill) so we will call that a LINKING Attack. So if all three of those attacks hit, then both Ruin and Constraint would be applied. if the Weaponskill missed, then you would have only Ruin, and if one of the Normal Attacks missed, you would get Constraint.
So, let's continue. We just applied Constraint and Ruin to the monster. Now we come to Weapon Skill + Normal Attack. That is Constraint, right? Wrong. The order is backwards and WILL NOT work. It must be Normal Attack + Weapon Skill. Having it backwards will not apply the debuff. So why is Normal Attack there? Simple, to chain with the Magic Spell to create Regimen of Despair. If that normal attack misses, then nothing will occur (as Weapon Skill + Magic Spell does not create a Regimen Effect.)
But what if the Magic Spell misses? It won't. Even if it is fully resisted (0 damage) it will STILL create the regimen effect if a normal attack comes before it and lands. So even if you are a Gladiator and love to cast Thunder for some reason, there is a use for it. If you don't get it, read over the Regimen debuff sections to see the various combinations then come back and work it. It isn't as complicated as it looks, promise.
That's pretty much it. Those are the only limitations to using Battle Regimen mode, so honestly there is little excuse (except #1, which is the most debilitating, but only for certain members.) So now that the bad is out of the way, let's get to the good, shall we?
Chapter 4: How do Battle Regimens WORK?
Battle Regimens have a variety of effects and uses, all of which can be useful in one form or another. While currently at the time of writing I do not forsee Regimens having TOO much tactical influence, with the discovery of new monsters in Eorzea I believe they will become a pivotal tool, which is why it is wise to learn them now. Below is the copy/pasted table given to us by SE describing what the effects are and what attacks initiate them, followed by a more in-depth explanation, combos proven to work and the efficacy of their effect.
Chart here: http://i1106.photobucket.com/albums/h361/AureliousSilverbreeze/BattleRegimenGuidePics/BattleRegimenEffects.png
So, there is the table. For the most part, it is pretty simple to figure out what is going on. However, let us examine this further. Please note, where I have "Normal Attack" listed, this is any attack that does not consume TP. The Guild Mark abilities, the alternate R1 abilities learned after your first quest will fill this role. If it takes MP or TP, it is not a Normal Attack. Magic Attacks are any of the Disciple of Magic's Basic Attacks, guildmark abilities included (Silhouette, Elemental Shroud, Spirit Dart, Phantom Dart, etc) Of course, be careful with those which have an AoE nature.
Regimen of Ruin (Defense Down)
The most basic of basic Battle Regimens is this one. Even two Rank 1's can execute this one with no difficulty, as the only thing it requires is your basic move that you cannot remove!
Examples: Normal Attack + Normal Attack
Light Slash (Gladiator) --> Heavy Strike (Pugilist) = Regimen of Ruin
Heavy Thrust (Lancer)--> Close Shot (Archer) = Regimen of Ruin
And of course these can be mixed and matched. I haven't found a basic move combo that doesn't work. And it CAN be in any order, so no need to organize THIS regimen.
Best time to use? Of course, the best time to use this are on mobs with naturally tough defense, such as the Megalocrab monster family. Also, if your party consists of mainly melee members, then Regimen of Ruin is the way to go as extra damage is welcomed damage. Also, this stacks with Absorb DEF and Dia for even more punch!
Duration? The duration of all debuff Battle Regimens is 25 seconds. However, this CAN be refreshed before the duration is over so a good strategy with a Gladiator is to execute the BR, then Guard. At the end of the Guard (even the extended one), it is time to refresh the BR. Although honestly, you can see the debuff leave the mob and know then it is time to redo it. It's icon is a sword with a teardrop beside it inside a red circle.
Regimen of Trauma (Magic Defense Down)
Another basic Battle Regimen, this one involves Disciples of Magic! This will lower the magic defense of an enemy. My personal testing has shown that my spell damage did not increase when this debuff was applied, but I consistently had less resists. I have heard from others seeing a large damage spike during this debuff, so I am still testing this one to learn its true nature. However, less resists is more damage, so still no reason to cast this one aside!
Normal Attack + MagicAttack
Light Strike--> Spirit Dart = Regimen of Trauma
Light Shot --> Phantom Dart = Regimen of Trauma
Pretty simple, right? Just like before, except this time ORDER MATTERS. Phantom Dart-->Light Shot WILL NOT inflict Regimen of Trauma. It must follow Basic Attack + Magic Attack.
Best time to use? Against mobs that are highly magic resistant or if your team is mainly magic-oriented. Also, this DOES stack with the Gladiator R24 Skill, Luminous Spire. So if you have a GLD using this skill, this will make it even stronger.
Duration? The same as above, 25 seconds, and it can be refreshed before it is over. As above, there is a special icon indication Trauma is in effect (Has a staff icon inside a red circle with a tear-drop beside it)
Regimen of Despair (Casting Time Increased, MP Cost Increased)
This one is key to use on the Elementals or other mobs with AoE spells that hit hard. This debuff effects is actually two-fold. The first one increases casting time of the mob. This means less time hurting you and less damage overall received from the increased casting time. Also, those with the Shield Bash ability have a greater chance to stun the enemy from the spell cast (due to increased reaction time, though the Sentinel still needs to recognize the casting and act accordingly.) The second effect, while not as good as the first, is still strong, ESPECIALLY in drawn-out fights. Monsters do have a limited MP supply (tested on multiple Thistletail Marmots using Siphon MP) so this debuff will make each spell cost more (I am anticipating a 50% increase, though without being able to see their MP it is hard to know for sure), making them run out of mana much quicker. Most fights probably will not see the effect of Increased MP play out, but in future NM fights it could make all the difference.
Normal Attack + Magic Spell = Regimen of Despair
Light Slash + Aero = Regimen of Despair
Light Shot + Banish = Regimen of Despair
Best time to use? This is best used at the beginning of the fight, as a mob will tend to begin with a magic spell before using TP moves. It can also be effective towards the end of the fight when a monster's MP is depleting (thanks to Siphon MP and use of this regimen over time) to potentially stop a monsters magic casting altogether! Until more magic-basic NMs come out, the main use this will have is granting an increased reaction time for Sentinels to Shield Bash monsters out of their spells.
Duration? Same as above, 25 seconds. This Regimen and the next one are best if it is CONSTANTLY applied to the monster. Having it up for 25 seconds is useless if the monster decided to cast 10 seconds after it wears....it effectively did nothing. So keep it refreshed (make a /wait 10, /p "Begin Despair Regimen!" macro helps keep it timed.) The icon is a magic staff with an x at the bottom in a red circle.
Regimen of Constraint (TP Inhibited, TP Cost Increased)
Now this Battle Regimen is more tactical and its effect more easily seen. This is the perfect Regimen to use on mobs with powerful TP moves (Such as the Eft's Breath move.) What this regimen effect does is lower the amount of TP gained per successful action the monster takes and increases the amount of TP needed to actually perform the move. So in a sense, this effectively doubles the amount of time it takes for them to use a TP move. Very handy.
Basic Attack + Weapon Skill
Heavy Slash + Puncture = Regimen of Constraint
Light Shot + Concussive Blow = Regimen of Constraint
*This one, like the one before, requires a particular order. Going out of order will do no good here, so be organized!
Best time to use? As I mentioned above, fighting mobs with powerful/unavoidable/annoying TP moves (especially if they have a high tp gain rate) will make those monsters much more manageable. This is definitely one you want to keep refreshed on the mob (and yes, an icon specific to this Regimen does appear, it looks like a mini-stamina gauge with an x on it inside a red circle.)
Duration? 25 seconds. As mentioned above, try to keep this one on at all times as it can have a great impact on battles. If you let it wear off, then suddenly they have a LOT of TP for them to chain attacks with, so keep it refreshed. With moves like Moonrise, Heavy Shot and Absorb TP you could possibly keep a monster from using TP moves at all.
These next two Battle Regimens do NOT leave a debuff on the enemy. They are for the players to increase their abilities and effectiveness. Curious? Read on.
Increase Effectiveness of Class Abilities when used by Different Classes:
Now this one is perhaps the hardest one to figure out. My current hypothesis is this is useful when you have a powerful weapon skill on your bar for a low cost (Skull Sunder, for example) but you are playing Pugilist. Well, with the Battle Regimen, you can stack Skull Sunder to be as strong as it would be on MRD! (Please note however that Skull Sunder is a Slashing damage move, and Pugilist weapons are primarily Blunt damage, so it will not stack well...but your Skull Sunder damage WILL increase under this.) This is basically free DPS and should not be ignored.
Examples (Melee Edition): Weapons Skill + Weapon Skill = Cross Class Increase
Puncture + Arrow Helix, Iron Tempest + Skull Sunder, Concussive Blow + Aura Pulse
**Please note, the two weapon skills MUST BELONG to the same class, otherwise you activate the regimen listed below**
Best time to use: Honestly, this one isn't as open to interpretation and looking at the weaponskills, there is no real combination that really stands out. For optimal damage, make sure the skill you are cross-classing and chaining is of the same damage type as the weapon you are wielding (if you cross-class Puncture, a Piercing move, your weapon should have a Piercing modifier on it for optimal results.) If anyone has a combo they feel works incredibly well, let me know and I will update this section and give you credit for the contribution!
Examples (Magic Edition): Magic Spell + Magic Spell = Regimen of Effectiveness Increase
Thunder + Fire, Banish + Scourge, Drown + Shock, Absorb TP + Siphon MP
**Please note, the two magic spells MUST BELONG to the same class, otherwise you activate the regimen listed below**
Best time to use: Just like above, it isn't so simple to figure this one out. One of the stronger examples I can think of is a melee using Siphon MP or Absorb "Stat" with a THM using Scourge or Banish (to lower resistance to Umbral/Astral) to increase his gains. Or perhaps a THM that has Thunder II on his bar to work with a CON who is setting up Shock and a Thunder II of his own for some burst damage.
*Small test* Using a R21 CON and me being a 21THM, we both casted Siphon MP separate 4 times. Each time I would gain an average of 85MP, whereas the CON would siphon around 53MP. During a Battle Regimen with Siphon MP + Siphon MP, his Siphon's averaged around 82, a lot closer to mine. However, his recast stayed longer (at 1:15)
Duration: Only during the current Battle Regimen. The effect does not linger, so it's good for one shot per Battle Regimen.
Increase Player Damage
Now this one is useful and simple, and the one everyone wants (or should want) to do. Basically, by chaining together two weapon skills (OF DIFFERENT CLASS) or two magic spells (OF DIFFERENT CLASS) then the second one in the chain will receive a 50%(!) increase in damage. This is also the one chain that three people can join in, giving two attacks of increased damage! Examples below.
Examples (Melee Edition): Weapon Skill + Weapon Skill + Magic Spell
Trunksplitter + Concussive Blow II + Thunder II
Puncture + Howling Vortex + Absorb DEF
Damnation (Or Radiance) + Iron Tempest + Choke
Note: Italics means OPTIONAL. This chain WILL work without the magic spell, but the magic spell also receives a 50% increase in power, so why not add it? Absorb spells also receive a stronger effect during Battle Regimens, so adding a Siphon MP or Absorb ATK (especially if you are a melee, you have a much stronger chance of landing the absorb in the regimen state) could be an excellent utility of this regimen. Think of adding the spell as Magic Bursting in FFXI. Also, the Weapon Skills MUST be from two different classes (or you initiate the regimen above, cross-class effectiveness.)
Examples (Magic Edition): Magic Spell + Magic Spell + Weapon Skill
Scourge II + Blizzard II + Victimize
Paralyze + Drown + Skewer II
Banish + Thunder II + Damnation
Note: Italics means OPTIONAL. It is not required in order to complete the regimen, but it is extra damage so you may as well. Plus depending on the chain, you can make Regimen regardless if one misses! Remember, the first spell will not get the extra damage, so make sure it is someone weaker (preferably a THM with Scourge or Banish to lower Magic DEF towards the element Player 2 is using.) Also, the magic spells MUST be of different class, or you will initiate the regimen above (cross-class effectiveness).
Best time to use? All the time! Whenever two people have some TP ready to go, it is much better used here! While in weaker fights, TP burning may be the better option (people just using weapon skills whenever), in longer fights it is MUCH better to use the Battle Regimen! If none other is used, please aim to use this one. There is no reason NOT to. Just imagine...Ferocity + Raging Strike + Discerning Eye + Cadence+ Victimize (with a few debuffs on of course, like Regimen of Ruin, Dia and Absorb DEF) at 50% increased damage? Or perhaps with Shock and Regimen of Trauma on... Scourge II + Blizzard II (With Profundity+Blood Rite) + Luminous Spire. In a game where you can have multiple abilities to stack and enhance, skills like this only shine brighter.
**Special Note** As explained in Chapter 3, #4...in Battle Regimens certain actions can function as what I like to call a Linking Chain. Basically if a move can be the end of one Regimen but the beginning of another, then it will link those two together and perform the functions of both (look at reference above for an explanation.) Well, in the Weapon Skill + Weapon Skill chain...that's all there is. So say you chained Damnation + Skull Sunder + Puncture. Skull Sunder would receive a 50% damage increase (as it was second in the chain) but it will also function as the beginning of the chain for Puncture, giving it the damage bonus as well. So now you have two Weapon Skills at increased power. Now of course, if one Weapon Skill misses, then you need two (with the first being regular power) to build the chain back. So I would recommend doing an Absorb-EVA or such to help even the odds of not missing. Same applies for Magic Spells. You can do Weapon Skill + Weapon Skill + Magic Spell + Magic Spell + Weapon Skill + Weapon Skill...you get the theory. And with magic spells, even if they are full resisted for 0, it still considers it a hit for the next skill in the chain! So with a 15man party, this can lineup to help increase DPS tremendously (giving the healers a chance to add some damage with at least a guaranteed link. Give it a try sometime!)
**Special Note** The R30 Gladiator skill, Cadence, is amazing! It increases the damage multiplier by 50%! So if whomever has cadence goes second in the Weapon Skill + Weapon Skill, then their damage essentially doubles! Here is a small screen displaying a regimen not using Cadence, and one using Cadence.
No Cadence: http://i1106.photobucket.com/albums/h361/AureliousSilverbreeze/BattleRegimenGuidePics/502howlingmini.png
Chapter 6: In closing
Thank you to everyone who helped me gather the data to make this as comprehensive as it could be. If there are any comments, questions (about the guide, BR's or otherwise) please contact me by PM or in-game and I will be glad to answer any questions or help you out!
Edited, Jan 12th 2011 12:46pm by AureliousSilverbreeze
Edited, Jan 15th 2011 1:27pm by AureliousSilverbreeze
Edited, Sep 2nd 2011 2:29pm by AureliousSilverbreeze