Final Fantasy 15, despite all of its innovations, is still a game that is very much aware of its roots. Square Enix's ground-breaking JRPG contains countless references to the games that came before it, and many of those Easter eggs are relevant items or quest chains that reward players for both their time and their past knowledge of the Final Fantasy series. The release of Final Fantasy 15's Episode Gladiolus DLC has thankfully continued that trend as well, with a few neat references to Final Fantasy lore and one gigantic inclusion as the final boss of the DLC's lone linear dungeon setting.
For those unfamiliar, Final Fantasy 15 Episode Gladiolus' final dungeon boss is none other than Gilgamesh, an iconic character within the series who has appeared in many forms over the years. While Gilgamesh is typically portrayed as a bumbling, incompetent swordsman with an inflated value of his own abilities and a poor estimation of a myriad number of Final Fantasy heroes' own, this time around he's a little different. In Final Fantasy 15, Gilgamesh is a Blademaster, a legendary master of the sword who seeks to defeat any who attempt to best him in combat. Luckily for fans, Gladiolus believes he is up to the task, and Final Fantasy 15 Episode Gladiolus culminates in a boss fight with an incredibly game Gilgamesh.
The fight might be difficult - especially because Episode Gladiolus eschews Final Fantasy 15's remarkable combat for something more closely resembling an action game - but it is manageable. Here, we've assembled a few tips and tricks to make the fight easier. Beating Gilgamesh is well worth players' time, as his defeat yields the incredibly cool Genji Blade.
Preparation is Key
First and foremost, players need to realize that Episode Gladiolus takes place away from the campaign of the main game after Gladiolus splits from Noctis' party for a while. That means that Gladiolus won't have any access to the items players have collected during the main campaign, which makes healing significantly more difficult. Luckily, several restoratives are scattered quite generously throughout Episode Gladiolus' dungeon, and it is crucial that players acquire as many as possible. This will give gamers a lot more flexibility in the challenging boss fight ahead of them.
Once players enter the Gilgamesh boss fight proper, they'll notice that at certain points in combat Gilgamesh will begin to glow red. That's a sign to get out of the way, because his attacks will become unblockable for as long as he is glowing. Instead of parrying, make sure to dodge roll or sprint around the room. Most of Gilgamesh's attacks are easy to predict once players get a feel for his animations, and he should cycle through his basic attacks well before glowing red, so be sure to watch attentively before then to know when to time dodges.
Embrace the Anger
While dodging during the glowing segments of the Gilgamesh fight is a must, blocking and parrying whenever Gladiolus is able to do so are also crucial. Blocking builds up Gladiolus' rage meter, a new mechanic in the DLC, and the higher the rage meter, the more damage Gladiolus is able to inflict with his attacks. Gilgamesh is a fairly fast-paced fight that can see players leaving themselves open to counterattacks if they get too aggressive with their melee strikes, so it is important to be patient and make every hit count for as much damage as it can.
Praise the Sun
Of course, players could just dodge for the entirety of the fight instead. Blocking and parrying require very tight windows to input their commands, and taking a few shots from Gilgamesh can deplete the restoratives in Gladiolus' inventory quite quickly. Players can always embrace the Dark Souls school of combat and dodge roll frequently, pausing only when it is safe to get in a few hits on Gilgamesh before rolling out of the way again. It's effective, although it takes quite a while.
Once defeated, Gilgamesh will immediately revive in a more potent form, meaning that dodging and parrying are absolutely critical. A few hits from Gilgamesh in this form can end the fight in a hurry. Given the long attack animations on Gladiolus' strikes, if players are comfortable parrying, that should be the exclusive approach to the fight - otherwise, a miss can spell disaster.
Reap the Rewards
Following these guidelines will make the Gilgamesh fight a lot more manageable. Beating Gilgamesh unlocks a number of cool bonuses besides the Genji Blade, including the Dual Master Glaive Art for Gladiolus and a brand new trailer for the Episode Prompto DLC that will be arriving for Final Fantasy 15 in the summer. It's a satisfying end to one of the more challenging boss fights in Final Fantasy 15, and it's an exciting first offering that seems to indicate Final Fantasy 15's DLC should live up to the pedigree of the main game.
Final Fantasy 15: Episode Gladiolus is available now for PS4 and Xbox One.