Chapter 4 in the Final Fantasy VII remake has one more surprise for you: a tricky boss called the Enigmatic Spectre. It's not one of the toughest bosses in FF7R's Hard Mode, but it can still put up a fight.
Here's how to take down the Enigmatic Spectre in FF7R, on both Normal and Hard Modes.
Prima Games - Defeating the Enigmatic Spectre
You'll wake up after Jessie's mission in Chapter 4 under sudden attack by Mysterious Spectres. They aren't much of a threat, but simple physical attacks don't do much to them. You're better off trying to burn them down with spells, and only using physical attacks once they're at least Pressured.
You do have Tifa back in your party for this stretch of the chapter, and her natural punchiness can help overcome the Spectres' durability. This is actually a decent opportunity for some combo practice with her.
After your first run-in with the Spectres, you'll run into their boss. At first, the Enigmatic Spectre seems untouchable. It's difficult to chase down, and takes limited damage from just about everything in your arsenal. While it's at range, the Spectre harasses you with projectiles, including Exhale and Flood. It can also inflict Bound status with Entwine, which forces you to switch characters and punch out the ghosts that are keeping your other party member locked down.
All the while, you're also surrounded by more Mysterious Spectres. Individually, they still aren't much, but there are enough of them that you can take a lot of damage in a hurry if you aren't careful.
There are two general approaches to winning this fight. One is to kill the Mysterious Spectres as efficiently as you can, by firing spells to stagger them and following up with physical attacks, or by just busting through their damage resistance with high-impact moves like Cloud's Focused Thrust. Each Mysterious Spectre that drops raises the Enigmatic Spectre's Stagger meter more than anything else you can do to it, and once it's off-balance, you can take off most of its health with a savage pummeling. You'll probably need to go through this process at least twice before the Enigmatic Spectre drops.
The alternative is to just have Tifa punch the damn thing out. Even this early in the game, Tifa is a Stagger powerhouse. You can cast Unbridled Strength twice to amp her Triangle-button attack, then ignore the Mysterious Spectres in favor of beating the Enigmatic Spectre like it's got candy inside. Once she manages to Stagger the Spectre, you can hammer the Triangle button to hit it with Rise and Fall, then Omnistrike. This should boost the Spectre's Staggered damage percentage by a significant amount, enabling you to finish it most of the way off within that initial Stagger window. Just repeat the process and you're set.
The Mysterious Spectres attack faster on Hard Mode, and their generally higher damage output is enough to pose a serious problem. You don't need to worry that much about conserving MP here, since the chapter's about over, but you also have to split your focus between healing up and Staggering the Spectres.
As usual, you'll want to come in here with HP/MP Up Materia on Cloud and Tifa, just to increase their basic survivability. The basic strategy here doesn't change on Hard Mode, as you're still meant to Stagger the Enigmatic Spectre over time by mowing down his backup, but it's a harder proposition now.
It's a slightly safer bet to take advantage of Tifa's endgame abilities and just brute-force the encounter. Despite the Spectre's damage resistances, she can still Stagger it with enough pure hits to the face.
Cast Haste on Tifa early on so she can build up to two stacks of Unbridled Strength, then switch to her, ignore the Mysterious Spectres, and stay focused on their Enigmatic buddy. Build up your ATB while you're burning through its Stagger meter, and once it's open, murder the Spectre. Two True Strikes from Tifa should raise its Stagger meter to the point where it drops surprisingly quickly. In a way, this is a pure test of how fast and efficiently you can play as Tifa.
You don't get a reward for beating the Enigmatic Spectre on Easy/Normal mode... well, besides your continued survival. On Hard Mode, the Spectre drops Vol. V of Way of the Fist, a Manuscript that grants 10 SP to Tifa.
We've got a lot more to say about the Final Fantasy VII remake, with a ton of guides and articles. Check out the rest of it at our game hub, including:
- Winning your duel with Roche on Hard Mode
- Learn all four Enemy Skills and unlock the Master of Mimicry Trophy
- How to find the Gotterdammerung, the ultimate accessory in FF7R
The Enigmatic Spectre is tricky, but there are bigger challenges ahead in Final Fantasy VII Remake's Hard Mode. Its real function seems to be as a sort of puzzle boss, as well as a tutorial regarding just how hard Tifa can punch ghosts if given the opportunity. Tell us your two-fisted stories of ghost punching via our official Twitter, @PrimaGames.