The battle against Rathalos in Final Fantasy XIV is a bit different from other trials. It has special mechanics that were taken from Monster Hunter World to keep Rathalos as true to the original as possible.
How to Unlock / Get the Rathalos Extreme version? After defeating Rathalos in the normal version with your team of 8 players, you can challenge the Rathalos in the extreme version:
- Quest Name: The King of the Skies, Location: Kugane (X: 9.7 / Y: 8.9), NPC: Monster Hunter, Requirements: Complete the quest "King of the Skies," Item Level 350+
Special features of the EX version: The extreme trial is similar to the normal one in many mechanics, but there are two important differences:
- Only a maximum of 4 players may participate.
- The players in the group are allowed a maximum of 3 KO: only 3 KO total during the whole fight, not 3 times per player.
The players have much more responsibility than in the normal version and need to know at all times, what makes Rathalos and who he has just targeted.
As in the normal version, there are no ads on the ground when Rathalos performs his attacks, and you have to watch how he moves and dodge in time.
Strategy Before the fight with Rathalos EX in Final Fantasy XIV
Rathalos is a chaotic fight at first sight. But you can get used to it quickly. Basically, there are some rules of thumb that you can follow to get through the fight:
- Get Medica: Without this ability, fighting is difficult to achieve. In the best case, take a scholar with you for the Faith ability of Selene.
- Healers should never revitalize: players can return and continue to fight. Getting up normally doesn’t cause any disadvantages like weakness and you have full HP and MP immediately.
- Save the mega-potions for the final phase: as in the normal version, the healers in the first phase are able to use their magic, and they should. The potions should be saved as much as possible for the phase in which the healing magic is blocked.
- Try to disperse in the arena during the fight: Even though Rathalos targets only one player at a time, all his attacks are AOE. If you have aggro and are close to the group members, you run the risk of catching them as well.
- Don’t get hit: If your HP in the group is below about 40,000, then you should wait until you are over 40,000. Most of Rathalo's attacks are so damaging that they would kill any player with HP below 40,000 without shields. High HP will give you a chance to survive.
- All attacks can stun: If you are hit by multiple attacks after each other and survive, the character is briefly stunned.
- Rule of thumb: When Rathalos turns to you, run to the side!
The fight has no super-complicated mechanics, as you know from other ex-trails. Basically, you should always keep an eye on Rathalos and watch what moves he performs to successfully dodge his attacks.
Rathalos Battle Phase -1
Rathalos will roar right at the beginning. It is an AOE. He pulls the group about 40% HP. Therefore, the healers should build shields in the optimal case, in order to catch the damage. Rathalos will use this attack multiple times throughout the battle.
Rathalos will use his normal mode attacks in this fight as well, but they hurt a lot more now.
Tail Sweep: This is a 180 ° attack that hits all players near Rathalos. The attack deals high damage and can stun players. It is usually run two to three times.
Just before carrying out the attack, Rathalos will bow his head, roar and pull the tail out to the side. He always looks in the direction from which the tail attack will come. If he does that, as a melee you should face him, his knees, if possible, in order to avoid the attack while still being able to attack.
Mangle: Rathalos will make an attack, spitting fire in front of him and slamming his tail behind him. One can recognize this attack by the fact that Rathalos shortly before it will raise its tail and come from its mouth smaller flames. To avoid it, you should get away from it as fast as possible.
Storming: Rathalos will choose a player to jump on and cause massive damage. Anyone who is in his path will also be harmed. Therefore, the players must immediately run to the side to avoid the attack
Flame Rebound: It's one of the harder attacks of the Rathalos. It's a fireball that does a lot of damage, stuns players, and is hard to spot.
When Rathalos is about to use the attack, he turns to the targeted player, slightly lifts his flights, and holds still for a few moments.
Fire Breath: This fireball mechanics is one of the few that actually appears as AOE on the ground in this fight. It targets a player who gets a marker. This player is then hit by a fireball and gets a stack of the "Burning".
The attack itself does about 20,000 HP damage and the burn becomes stronger the more often a character gets hit by the fireball. So you should probably remove it with Medica or a similar ability.
These attacks are used in a random order and it is also random which player in the group he is aiming for.
Rathalos Battle Phase -2
At about 80% HP Rathalos will roar once more and cause severe AOE damage to the group. After that, new monsters will enter the arena. Steppe Sheep, Steppe Yamaa and Steppe Coeurl. They can be found in the first boss fight of the dungeon "Bardams Probe".
They will all focus on Rathalos, but their AOEs are very annoying. In contrast to Rathalos they have a normal Aggro behavior and can be fueled. Therefore, you should take care of them as quickly as possible.
All attacks from Rathalos also cause damage to the animals. For example, if a player is targeted by a marked fireball, it is recommended that he stand next to the sheep and Yamaa so that they are hit as well.
While the animals are on the battlefield, Rathalos will continue to use the normal attacks, so keep an eye on what he's doing.
At about 70% HP and after all animals have been done, comes the DPS check phase of the fight. As in normal mode, a Garula will appear and upset Rathalos. Then a DPS should use the special command and jump on his back.
The rest of the group must now clear the Garula as quickly as possible.
There are two important differences from normal mode:
- Garula causes massive damage to the tank and he should be tanked against the wall because he uses an extremely strong frontal AOE. The healer should focus on keeping the group alive.
- The player who climbs the back of Rathalos will receive a heavy DoT. He will die quickly if the healer does not take care of him.
The group has about 25 seconds to defeat Garula before Rathalos makes his ultimate attack. Otherwise Garula will run away and the group will wipe.
Rathalos Battle Phase - 3
Rathalos will now fly: This also changes his attacking behavior and adds a new mechanic to the fight. While in the air, the monster will suffer greatly reduced damage. But now he gets a new status bar, which indicates when the group has done enough damage to bring Rathalos to case.
It is not worth working Rathalos with strong skills while he is still in the air. Wait until the bar has filled and Rathalos falls down.
As soon as he is on the ground, he suffers increased damage. So take good care of the bar and save your buff skills for the moment Rathalos goes down.
In addition, from this phase, all abilities that regenerate HP will have no effect. Therefore, the healers should focus on the damage, as well as the removal of negative state changes such as burn wound and poison.
After Rathalos returns to the combat arena, the group should immediately redistribute itself to avoid its first attack.
Since Rathalos is now permanently in the air, his set of attacks has also changed:
- Storming: The attack is changing in so far that Rathalos now attacks with its claws from the air. He will again target a random player, roar and fly towards him. His attack now causes not only extremely high damage but also poison.
Rathalos will use this attack several times in succession. To dodge, you have to run out of his way.
- Triple Fireball: It is the second mechanic that is actually displayed. A random player in the group will receive an AOE marker, followed by three Rathalos fireballs. They work as follows:
- Players must gather next to the marker to share the damage.
- Each fireball leaves an AOE puddle on the floor, which will remain for a very long time. So you have to move on after each fireball. Therefore, place your puddles so that they don’t obstruct your movement on the field.
- With each fireball, the players hit get a stack of "Burn" DoT. It does not hurt too much, but should be removed at least 3-4 stacks with Medica or a similar ability.
- A tank can and should take its fireball stack alone. This reduces the amount of players who later need a medica from the healer.
- Sweeping Flames: Similar to the first phase, Rathalos will turn to the player and fire will appear in his mouth, which he will then spit. It deals heavy damage and gives the player a burn wound stack.
Once the group has managed to fill the "go to the ground" bar, Rathalos will crash.
The first crash will give the group the option to attack its tail, which they should do. If the HP of the tail can be brought to 0 before Rathalos recovers, he will suffer massive damage.
If you have a mage or ranged fighter in the group, they can use the Limit Rush right now and hit both the tail and Rathalos for high damage .
Afterwards, Rathalos will rotate the abovementioned abilities until the end of the fight. There are no further surprises.
You'll probably be able to fill his beam two or three more times and get him on the ground.