A new DLC story chapter for the Final Fantasy 7 Remake has arrived! The story revolves around Wutai operative Yuffie Kisaragi’s attempt to infiltrate Shinra’s headquarters to steal their ultimate Materia. Set after the events of the base game, players will control Yuffie in this bite-sized adventure. While you will encounter a few tough battles throughout, none of them is as annoying as the final boss, Nero. Not only does Nero hit like a truck, but he has multiple attacks that will just drain your health continually. Broken up across three phases, Nero can definitely be a struggle for those who haven’t mastered Final Fantasy 7 Remake’s combat system.
How to Beat Nero
Despite everything I just said, the opening phase of the Nero fight isn’t that bad. While Nero does have some pretty nasty close-range attacks, most of this can be mitigated by hit and run tactics. Keep in mind, Nero has no weakness or elemental resistances so feel free to use whatever you want. That being said, Nero is immune to essentially all status effects so don’t bother trying to inflict poison or sleep on him. Which weapon you use is up to you, but I had the best luck with the 4-Point Shuriken.
When the fight begins, get some distance between you and Nero. Throw out your shuriken and begin peppering him with Yuffie’s magical barrage. This will let you stay out of his melee combo range or give you enough time if he decides to dash towards you. If Nero launches up into the air he will rain down a hail of bullets so either sprint to either side or just hold block to mitigate the damage. If you’ve been keeping your distance there’s a good chance that he will target Sonon and not you. If you do build up a Limit attack, just save it for now. Once you deplete about 1/4th of Nero’s health bar the next phase will begin.
Here’s where things get tricky, as Nero will infuse almost all of his attacks with darkness. This means, if he strikes you at all you will begin to rapidly lose health for a few seconds. Unfortunately, this isn’t considered poison damage so an Antidote cannot cure this status effect. Your best bet is to simply use Cura or a Mega Potion to heal when your health starts getting low. Nero likes to use a lot of ranged attacks in this phase, firing out massive tendrils and ground smashes that will travel in a straight line. He will also fly into the air and fire a bunch of dark projectiles which can be avoided if you sprint away from them. Finally, Nero will also perform slashes with his wings when you try to attack him at close range.
The catch is you can actually block these close-range shots without them inflicting the darkness drain debuff. Because of this, you’ll want to strike him a few times and immediately throw your guard up. The best time to damage Nero is when he begins to summon columns of darkness around him. When you see him raise his hands in front of his face and a bunch of dark purple circles forms on the floor run towards Nero. So long as one of those circles isn’t right by him you will avoid his attack and get a nice window to pour on the damage. Synergize with Sonon and try to force Nero into a stagger state. Even if you obtain it, I would hold off on using your Summon during this portion. You’re really going to want it during the final stretch.
If you do stagger Nero, use synergizes abilities to deal heavy damage. Once the stagger bar phase ends, quickly retreat and wait for an opening between his attacks to damage him. Remember to use Yuffie and Sonon’s Limit attacks liberally, there’s no reason to ignore them.
So Nero is really sick of our shit and decides to just flood the entire room with darkness. He will begin using all the darkness attacks listed above far more liberally. If you have your Summon available call it in immediately. Not only does it do big damage to Nero, but it can help push him to his final attack. You’ll want to stay clear of the outer edges of the arena, as stepping in it will inflict the drain effect on your crew. Instead, play aggressively and get in Nero’s face whenever there’s an opening. Nero’s a bit tricky to stagger right now, but this will change once a brief cutscene plays and Nero throws a massive bomb on the ground. After the bomb hits the ground the entire arena will continuously drain your group’s health so it’s critical you use your ATB bars to heal.
When this happens, stop targeting Nero with your attacks and go for his wings. These will be separate targets and destroying his wings will cause Nero to either outright stagger or become very easily staggered. Doing enough damage to Nero will also cause the darkness floor to vanish, allowing you to freely move around and not have your health siphoned. This fight is all about managing your health with items and Cura. Outside of occasionally performing Ability attacks, you really have no reason to do magic attacks. Being stationary is a death sentence – especially since Nero has no weakness. Focus on healing and you should be able to survive this final battle.