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The Best Ways To Farm AP And EXP Fast

Clive and Torgal face a colorful bird called a Dread Comet in battle.

Final Fantasy 16 streamlines many of the RPG elements typically seen in the Final Fantasy series, but you’ll still need to grind to max out Clive’s stats. Initially, this looks like a daunting task. And as of The Rising Tide DLC, you’ll have two more ability sets to master on top of an expanded level cap of 110 (or 60 outside of Final Fantasy mode, a special difficulty available only in New Game +).

Fortunately, you can dramatically streamline this process and grab all the grind-heavy trophies with just a little bit of know-how. Let’s cover the basics.

Before we start, know that you can respec to get the A Most Worthy Vessel trophy in Final Fantasy 16

First thing’s first: The Rising Tide doesn’t technically increase the AP grind for trophy hunters. The two new ability sets do not interact with the base game’s trophies at all, even though the description for the Masterclass trophy reads, “Upgrade all feats and abilities to their maximum.” In other words, you only need to master every ability you earned prior to Leviathan for trophy completion. By the same token, maxing out either of the new ability sets will not trigger the “Yes, Eikon” trophy.

This means you can straight-up cheese the “A Most Worthy Vessel” trophy in The Rising Tide. To quickly max out the two new ability sets, just reset your skill tree by either holding Square over each ability or holding down the touchpad. Max out every new DLC ability using your stack of AP, and you’ll trigger the A Most Worthy Vessel trophy immediately. Reset those skills again, reinvest in the abilities you want to use, and you’re done. No maxing out required!

Of course, you’ll still need a hefty chunk of AP to earn the Masterclass trophy. Let’s go over how to do that.

Screenshot: Square Enix / Kotaku

To grind EXP and AP fast, play on Final Fantasy mode

This is stating the obvious, but the best way to grind EXP and AP in Final Fantasy 16 is to naturally progress in the game. You’ll find ample sidequests and optional hunt targets as you complete the main story, which dish out much more EXP and AP than typical overworld monsters will. If you’re stuck in the main story, make sure you defeat any lingering hunt targets and clear every quest you can find.

Once you complete the game on Story-Focused or Action-Focused mode, you’ll unlock Final Fantasy mode. This option is exclusive to New Game + and raises the level cap by 50, but also pits Clive against harder monsters. Enemies in Final Fantasy mode award substantially more EXP and AP, to the point that farming monsters in Story-Focused or Action-Focused mode is practically a waste of time. Besides, if you’re interested in trophy completion, you’ll need to clear Final Fantasy mode anyway.

As an aside, Echoes of the Fallen and The Rising Tide are both worth doing before challenging Final Fantasy mode. Not only will you get a lot of EXP and AP through these, you’ll also earn some powerful equipment that will carry you through a sizable chunk of Final Fantasy mode. Also, the new Eikon abilities in The Rising Tide are very strong. I can’t stress that last point enough.

Clive talks to Charon at her shop.

Screenshot: Square Enix / Kotaku

Make sure to craft The Wages of Warcraft II and On Fortune and the Heavens II

The other huge perk of Final Fantasy mode is access to upgraded accessories. After the game’s second time-skip, you’ll have the option to buy The Wages of Warcraft and On Fortune and the Heavens, which will boost your rate of AP and EXP acquisition respectively. While these are available on your first playthrough, Final Fantasy mode will let you craft upgraded versions of each of these by purchasing two of them. Just head to the Blacksmith with copies of each scroll in hand, select the Reinforce tab, and fuse the two pieces together.

A few notes about these upgraded accessories. The bad news is that you can’t equip multiple copies of a single accessory. The good news is The Wages of Warcraft II and On Fortune and the Heavens II do stack with their unupgraded counterparts. This is another reason why grinding in Final Fantasy mode is faster; you can earn an extra 30% EXP and 40% AP on top of the increased gains from enemies.

If you want to completely skip the grind, equipping On Fortune and the Heavens II throughout a Final Fantasy mode playthrough should get you enough AP to earn the Masterclass trophy. This does mean you’ll sacrifice an accessory slot for most of the game. However, if you’re a trophy hunter who values efficiency, the benefit is well worth the cost.

A map screen highlights a location in Waloed.

Screenshot: Square Enix / Kotaku

The best place to farm AP in Final Fantasy 16

Now, assuming you got all the way through Final Fantasy mode and still need AP, the best grinding spot is in Waloed. Specifically, warp to the Ravenwit Walls fast-travel point and go to the east side of Kritten Hollow. See the map above for reference.

Here you’ll find a group of Hyenas running about that are inexplicably worth a ton of AP. They go down easily, so just equip as many ultimates or area-of-effect skills you can to take them out. With both Wages of Warcraft equipped, defeating this group can net you up to 1280 AP per run. Afterwards, reload into the area via the Ravenwit Walls fast travel point, ride your chocobo to where the Hyenas spawn, and repeat until you have all the AP you need.

Now, even though enemies in the DLC areas of the game are higher level than this, they give out far less AP than base game foes do. EXP, on the other hand, is a different story.

Clive and other characters are seen in combat with a little blue orb.

Screenshot: Square Enix / Kotaku

The best places to farm EXP in Final Fantasy 16

While the Hyenas will help you level up, there are at least two superior methods to farming EXP if AP is no longer an issue. The first and most straightforward farming method is by repeating the first battle inside of The Sagespire, the dungeon from Echoes of the Fallen.

The very first room you’ll enter here features a high density of weak enemies that you can easily burn by using an ultimate ability or two. Defeating these will spawn one foe with a stagger bar, but even this enemy doesn’t take too terribly long to dispatch. Clear through the group, and you’ll receive north of half a million EXP with On Fortune and the Heavens equipped. Wait for the result screen to pop up (you won’t actually receive any EXP otherwise), restart the dungeon by pressing on the touchpad, and repeat until you have the EXP you need.

Clive spies a level 100 enemy called a Grey Widow in a forest area.

Screenshot: Square Enix / Kotaku

The second method involves…well, exploring Mysidia in The Rising Tide. While the enemies here aren’t quite as rich in EXP, they’re densely concentrated throughout this map. What’s more, after you complete side quests in Haven, you’ll be able to find Aquamarine throughout Mysidia. You’ll need these stones to craft accessories for Leviathan’s skills, so you’ll earn a huge chunk of EXP from defeating enemies while you look for them. I wouldn’t recommend mindlessly exploring Mysidia once you’ve crafted and upgraded everything you can, but this is a fun little distraction that’s easy to overlook on a normal playthrough.

There’s nothing to explicitly gain from hitting level 110, but hey, sometimes we don’t need trophies or achievements to shoot for our own definitions of 100% completion. So regardless of the farming method you choose, I just hope you have fun in the process. Remember to take some time to pet Torgal just to keep the vibes fun while you grind.