Hi everyone! Recently chatting with a forum member, we discussed an Alisae skill flow chart and got to talking about how they wanted play guides for other characters as well. I offered to write out general tips for characters if they were interested because I make it a point to play a lot of different ones in co-op and they said "do that" so here I am. Gonna start with WoL and Noctis, but this is by no means a one-way conversation. Feel free to state your own tips and opinions on characters as you see fit, just keep it civil. That being said.... [Strategies discussed assume full gear and necessary crystal levels for all abilities] WARRIOR OF LIGHT Starting off easy - WoL is a character that lets you get away with a lot of things without having to do much, but he has a few nuances that people may or may not think of: - Shining Shield Shining Shield is a superior battery to Throw Buckler. If you are in a summon with no brave, Shining Shield is the way to go no matter how many charges of shield your party has left. If your party has fed WoL brave and he's capped on his summon turn, that's when to use Throw Buckler and get monstrous overflow, but usually, you'll be capping your team's brave with SS to maximize THEIR damage. On longer fights, the skill is two sided - you want to conserve uses so you make it to the end of the fight, however, if you get too stingy an enemy will crack the shield and force your hand anyway. Keeping everyone's shield on in the party will actually help WoL's longevity because it keeps his HP++ attack up to save you those skill uses when possible. I've seen a lot of people leave shields off certain teammates bc they've already locked a target with throw buckler. - Throw Buckler Despite my speech about HP++, this should always be your opening skill use on WoL unless there's multiple targets. This is because Throw Buckler buffs your initial brave, and your shield health and battery on Shining Shield are based off initial brave. If your initial brave is better, so is your shining shield. Cycle appropriately to keep all buffs on and max your numbers. NEVER use this when your brave is empty unless you're renewing your your initial brave buff or saving a teammate by locking/restoring WoL's shield health. Throw Buckler is way more precious than Shining Shield in use count. It's a waste to use it just for sWeEt DaMaGe Bro. It's not sweet. You could have overflowed on capped brave later and you just threw away 20% of your ability. - Shining Wave As long as your party's shields are in good shape when you get first use, DO IT. So many people sit on his EX when they don't need to heal, but the skill gives WoL speed up for 5 turns. This offers enormous battle control when WoL's turn is popping up more often. More chances to lock, more chances to shield, HP++, and get the ex back sooner so WoL is just perpetually stronger for the whole battle. - All Resist Up (if you have extension) Also criminally under-used. I guess no one uses this either because difficulty doesn't quite warrant it yet or they just don't care since shields are always up, but this is just another way to add to the insanity. You use this you reduce brave damage - TO YOUR SHIELDS. Your shields are more effective when this is on with them. "My shields are good, I don't need added defense" Cool! Throw it on anyway and now everyone has brave regen! As if that's not silly enough, between both uses (with bloom stone) you have 10 turns of this, and it doesn't conflict with your other buffs. - Summary Most people think of WoL as an auto-win character right now, which may ultimately be true, however, watching your buffs and strategically ensuring they are all on at once and stay on is what determines how good you actually are with the character. NOCTIS SET WARP ADVAAAAAAAAAAAAAAANCE is only gonna fly on 70 co ops. Awareness is SO important for Noctis when participating in real fights: - Shooting Star When dealing with multiple targets, save normal uses of this to put point blank warp on everyone. No reason to burn through extra warp strikes when this can apply and reapply Noctis's biggest power source in the fewest uses. Hold on to + version of this until you have proper turn order for your other two teammates to benefit, or know you have fatal damage with the bonus armiger attack. Overall, Shooting Star's primary function is to conserve warp strike usage while maintaining maximum uptime of point blank warp. This should never be your main damage source, the chase is merely a bonus. - Warp Strike (No, Death Drop is not ok) I feel this will be up for debate, but I think warp strike is the #1 skill to always use when you start with Noctis. Literally no reason to use Shooting Star first. I believe this because Noctis's biggest asset is Armiger, and you want to get to 5 stacks as quickly as possible. Unless a multiple enemy situation calls for it, I will ignore shooting star entirely and always begin with Noctis by getting to 2 Armiger with warp strike as fast as I can, so that when I have Conjure available I immediately jump to 5 stacks. Then I have access to the HP ++ attack and complete flexibility with my skills. Once you are at 5 stacks of Armiger, use of warp strike should almost cease entirely. Good thing you saved those Shooting Stars right? eh? Making sense now? Warp strike's function changes entirely once you reach 5 Armiger - instead of building your stacks, it only serves to renew them and keep your 5 stack going if Conjure Armiger is unavailable. Generally I will use the normal version to renew point blank on whatever I need to and then just keep the + version on standby so I'm never in any danger of losing Armiger. - Conjure Armiger Kind of already hinted at for the previous abilities - Conjure's sole purpose is to get you to 5 Armiger and keep you there till everything is dead. Always try to wait till your Armiger is down to 1 turn so you can maximize the value of resetting it with Conjure. -HP ++ Just a side note to always use this as much as possible. It's really easy to want to blaze through your skills once you're at Armiger 5 but this ability is what significantly increases Noctis's value. -Set Warp Advance The bane of all co-op, Set Warp functions much differently for longer fights. Instead of creating a loop of attacks, it's more so to preserve skill use so you can clutch renew Armiger. There's even justification in using one right away after you have 1 Armiger stack so you can save a skill use getting 2 Armiger and then be ready to go for Conjure and immediately have 5. It also gives you an extra launch on an enemy as icing on the cake. -Summary Overall, funnily enough, Noctis is a lot like WoL. It's all about keeping track of what you have currently operating on the character and making sure all of those things never go away. Both characters are excellent training on those new to Cosmos, as they reward conservation and punish recklessness. Again, feel free to add any thoughts, and I hope this helps some people who read it. Let me know if you do like these kind of character write-ups and if you have any requests and I'll be happy to continue the series.