How to master the Octopath Traveler battle system

Octopath Traveler has one of the most rewarding and deep battle systems I've had the pleasure of using in a JRPG in quite a while. While it certainly seems simple enough on the surface, there's a lot of quirks and small details about the battle system that game tutorials don't explain.

Don't worry though, I'm here to help. Here's my guide to making the battle system work for you and not against you!

Find enemy vulnerabilities quickly

This may sound like a no-brainer, but it can be a little hard to remember when you're in the middle of a battle. When you attack an opponent with a weapon or magic type that it's vulnerable too, you will weaken its shield. Weaken its shield to zero and you will "break" an enemy causing them to fall out of the turn order of their current turn, lose their next turn, and during that time, become more susceptible to damage from all sources.

When you're first starting out in Octopath Traveler and you only have one or two characters, finding vulnerabilities might be difficult because you have a limited number of attacks and elements at your disposal; however, as your party grows, this becomes easier.

Attack enemies with have many different weapons or magic as you need to until you find at least one weakness (if not two or three) because once you do, you can exploit that weakness and break enemies much faster.

Plan when to use your Boost Points (BP)

Octopath Boost Attack (Image credit: iMore)

When you're using BP, it's important to find out the best course of action. For every boost point you use (up to a max of three at one) you'll get an extra physical attack, or your skills and element attack become more powerful.

Using BP is a great way to eat through enemies shields and cause them to break. It's also awesome to use a charged up elemental attack to an enemy that's already broken.

Turn order matters

Every time you get into a battle, whether it's a random encounter or a boss battle, there's a very important set of images along the top of your screen. These images give you the turn order, meaning you can know exactly which heroes will get to attack when, and which enemies will strike back.

You need to be looking at this turn order constantly if you want to have success in Octopath Traveler.

Defend to manipulate turn order

Octopath Traveler battle (Image credit: iMore)

Speaking of keeping an eye on turn order, when a character uses the Defend action, they move to the top of the turn order for their next turn. Not to mention they will also take less damage from incoming attacks.

Use this to your advantage when planning your attacks, if you know a character can do a ton of damage to an enemy, but they won't go before them, consider defending to go first.

Have another good tip?

Is there a piece of advice we missed? Sound off in the comments below.

Luke Filipowicz
Staff Writer

Luke Filipowicz has been a writer at iMore, covering Apple for nearly a decade now. He writes a lot about Apple Watch and iPad but covers the iPhone and Mac as well. He often describes himself as an "Apple user on a budget" and firmly believes that great technology can be affordable if you know where to look. Luke also heads up the iMore Show — a weekly podcast focusing on Apple news, rumors, and products but likes to have some fun along the way. 

Luke knows he spends more time on Twitter than he probably should, so feel free to follow him or give him a shout on social media @LukeFilipowicz.