FFX Initiative: What It Does & How To Get It

Adding Initiative to a weapon in FFX HD

A weapon with the Initiative auto-ability will boost the party’s chances of having a Preemptive Strike in a random encounter. When a Preemptive Strike occurs, your party will have the opportunity to take their turns before the enemy.

Initiative can be added onto weapons through Customization. This feature is unlocked when you reach Guadosalam for the first time.

To customize gear with Initiative, you’ll need a weapon with at least one blank ability slot and 6 Chocobo Feathers.

Where To Get Chocobo Feathers

Cactuar on Bikanel Island / FFX
Cactuar on Bikanel Island

Chocobo Feathers are a bit rare to come by in FFX, since there are only a few sources for them.

In fact, the only way to farm this item is to steal them from the following fiends.

Enemy Method Location
Qactuar Steal Thunder Plains
Cactuar Steal (Common) Bikanel Island
Fenrir Steal (Common) Monster Arena

Both Qactuars and Cactuars can be really frustrating to deal with when you first encounter them in the game. It’s better to farm them after you’ve powered up a bit.

As for Fenrir, he’s a Species Conquest creation that can only be fought at the Monster Arena, making him tougher than your average fiend. You can unlock this monster by capturing at least three of each Lupine-type fiend in the game.

You will also be rewarded with 99 Chocobo Feathers when you unlock Fenrir.

And finally, there is also a one-time reward of 10 Chocobo Feathers when you defeat Belgemine’s Ixion in Remiem Temple for the first time.

How Does Initiative Work?

Preemptive Strike Notification / FFX
Preemptive Strike Notification

When a random encounter starts in FFX, there’s a few things that could happen:

  • There’s a 12.5% chance that you get a Preemptive Strike (your party gets their turns first)
  • There’s also a 12.5% chance for an Ambush (enemies get their turns first)
  • 75% of the time, battles will begin normally

When you equip a weapon with Initiative, the odds of getting a Preemptive Strike are raised to 25%, and the chances of getting Ambushed are eliminated. However, guaranteed Ambushes like encounters with the Great Malboro in the Omega Ruins will still occur.

You only need one character equipped with Initiative for the entire party to benefit from the ability. Having multiple characters with it customized onto their weapons will not have any additional effect.

Marco Cadayona

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Shower singer by day, bard main by night. Gamer since 1992.

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