While it’s by the same developer of those titles, Granblue Fantasy Versus plays quite distinctly in comparison - feeling slower in pace and having some unique control kinks.
If you’re considering jumping into the world of Granblue Fantasy, here’s some essential tips and tricks to get you started and familiar with its mechanics.
Use the block button
One of Granblue Fantasy Versus’s relatively distinct controls is the ability to either block attacks using the standard method of holding back, or by pressing down the R2 trigger.
While the game presents these as options, there are some advantages to using the block button. Firstly, it gives you defence against cross-up attacks, which makes it ideal for defending against an opponent in the air.
It also feels far more reliable at times to hammer on the trigger in a sticky situation, especially for those relatively new to fighting game mechanics. There are some downsides to using the block button, like accidentally dodging when coupled with a directional press, but it arguably offers far more perks as you’re getting to grips with the title.
You can block either using the R2 button or holding back (Picture: Arc System Works)
Keep an eye on your cooldowns
The other unique mechanic to Granblue Fantasy Versus is special moves aren’t tied with complex combo inputs, instead they’re pulled off by pressing R1 with various buttons and directional inputs, making it incredibly easy to pull off flashy moves.
Each special move is tied to a cooldown timer displayed at the top of the screen. This means it’s less about executing elaborate combos but releasing them at the right time, which is why keeping an eye on the meters is an essential tip for knowing what moves are available to you in crucial moments.
If not, you might find yourself wide open for an enemy attack when you’re trying to utilise a move which can’t be used yet.
The game uses a cooldown system for special moves (Picture: Arc System Works)
Run through the tutorials
It might seem obvious but jumping into the tutorials is the quickest and best way to build up your skill. There’s an enormous amount of tutorials too which are tailored to specific combat situations, making them very useful for forming counter tactics.
There’s also tutorials tied to each individual character, so once you’ve found your favourite fighter, jump into their tutorial missions to nail down their specifics.
Gran or Katalina are your best bets
When you boot up the RPG mode, there’s a reason you’re given Gran and Katalina as the opening characters. They’re easily the best fighters for newcomers and arguably the best across the entire roster.
They’re essentially the all-rounders who play the most conventionally - especially in comparison to others like the multi-character Laine and long range Metera who are far more obscure to get to grips with from the outset.
Gran is a safe bet (Picture: Arc System Works)
RPG mode tips
The RPG mode is the best place to discover the personalties of each character, while also offering something different via a side-scrolling beat ‘em up gameplay spin.
While the stages are relatively simple (and repetitive) for fighting game veterans, there’s some aspects which feel slightly under-explained. When you’re choosing your weapon on the grid, for example, make sure to fill out all the slots to boost your attack and HP.
In the RPG mode menu, there’s also an option for bonus missions which are filled with achievement-like tasks you’ll complete as you play through stages. Make sure to check back every now and then to claim your rewards, so you can earn more tickets for new weapons.
New weapons can also be purchased from a shop once you’re passed a certain stage, which can be an easy to buy more of the same weapon to uncap levels and maximise their abilities.
The RPG mode turns the game into a beat 'em up (Picture: Arc System Works)
Granblue Fantasy Versus is available on PlayStation 4 now.