When booting up Final Fantasy XVI for the first time, you’ll be asked to choose what difficulty you want to play on. There are two options to choose from: Story Focused and Action Focused. Story Focused allows you to focus more of your attention of the Story and is a bit more laid back in terms of difficulty. Action Focused asks a little more from you and it is recommended for gamers who are familiar with playing Action genre video games.
Story Focused is going to be a little easier than Action Focused. In Story Focused you are going to take less damage from enemies and mistakes won’t prove to be as costly. There is more room for error. The point of Story Focused is to make sure that combat is a lot easier to handle while you focus on enjoying the story more.
There are also Timely Ring Accessories that you will have active after the Tutorial. You will have two of the four already equipped. The other two that are not equipped will be found in your inventory. Timely Ring Accessories act similarly to cheat codes that are in the game to help make combat a bit easier. You can unequip these at any time in the pause menu.
Action Focused is going to be a route you want to take if you want a bit more of a challenge. It is not going to be extremely more difficult than Story Focused, but it will definitely put your combat skills to the test. You will still have the same four Timely Ring Accessories that you start out with in Story Focused, just none of them are equipped from the start. You can still equip them at any point you want if you find parts of Final Fantasy XVI being too difficult.
Which difficulty should you choose?
The choice is ultimately up to you. The way I think of these two difficulties is that Story Focused is Easy mode and Action Focused is Normal Mode. Even if this is your first Final Fantasy game, I would recommend playing the game on Action Focused.
If you start out and think Action Focused is too hard, you can always switch difficulties during the game, and it won’t have any penalty on you. You won’t have to start your journey over. That is why there is no harm, no foul when making this decision.
You should also know that no matter which difficulty you decide to choose, the content will all be the same. You aren’t going to miss anything major in the storyline by choose Story Focused over Action Focused. However, I do think that if you don’t just want Final Fantasy XVI to be a complete breeze, you will find Action Focused more enjoyable.