The Dark Inside is a level 84 Trial in Final Fantasy 14: Endwalker. After arriving on the moon, you'll finally confront the Ascian's god, Zodiark. The counterpart to Hydaelyn, and the original Primal, Zodiark won't go down easy.
Zodiark will employ some difficult mechanics, so prepare for a tough fight. Dozens of AoEs, hard-hitting attacks, and meteor impacts are just a few of the things you'll need to overcome in this Trial. Let's go over each of Zodiark's attacks and how you can beat him.
How To Unlock The Dark Inside
The Dark Inside is part of the Main Scenario and unlocks through the following quest.
- Accept the Main Scenario Quest 'The Martyr'
- NPC Location: Lustrous Dog – Mare Lamentorum (x:25.2, y:30.8)
The Dark Inside will take place on a square arena, with no railings to protect you from falling. Watch your step as you maneuver this Trial, or you may just find yourself falling to your death.
While the mechanics of this Trial are, on their own, rather straightforward to understand, the complexity of this fight comes from the frequency and combination of attacks. As the fight progresses, Zodiark will attack much more frequently, sometimes overlapping several attacks that you'll need to avoid. With enough practice, however, you'll be able to get the hang of this Trial and defeat Zodiark.
Below are the two phases of this Trial, as well as what attacks Zodiark will use in each.
You will begin the fight in phase 1, where Zodiark will have access to the following attacks.
- Kokytos: Reduces all party members' health to one. Healers should prepare to quickly restore everyone's health when this attack is cast.
- Exoterikos: Zodiark will create a triangle or square symbol on one side of the arena. Depending on the symbol, that side of the arena will produce an attack of a similar shape.
- Triangle Symbol: A large cone AoE that covers a majority of the arena. Move close to the side of the arena the symbol is on, then over to the side of the attack to avoid.
- Square Symbol: Covers that half of the arena in an AoE. Move to the opposite side of the arena to avoid.
- Ania: Deals high damage to the Main Tank. Use defensive cooldowns to mitigate damage.
- Styx: Zodiark will place a stack marker on a random player. Group up on the affected player to split the damage of this attack. Styx will deal high, continuous damage, so stay grouped up until the attack is finished. Both Healers should prepare to heal the entire party through the duration of this attack.
- Paradeigma: Zodiark will summon either two behemoth minions or two snake minions. Depending on which enemy is summoned, you will need to dodge different AoEs.
- Behemoths: Each behemoth will attack with a large circular AoE directly under themselves. The behemoths will be summoned in two of the four quadrants of the arena, meaning to avoid this attack you will need to move into one of the two safe quadrants.
- Snakes: The snake enemies will spawn on one side of the arena, and will use a line AoE attack down the length of the arena. There will always be a gap between the snakes that you can move to in order to avoid this attack.
- Adikia: Zodiark will attack the left and right side of the arena with large circular AoEs. Move to the top or bottom of the arena to avoid this attack.
- Phlegeton: This attack will cause three waves of continuous AoEs to follow random players. Keep moving with your party to avoid these AoEs.
- Astral Flow: Zodiark will lift all players into the air before rotating the platform 90 degrees to the left or right. The rotation direction is indicated by the arrows at the top of the arena. This attack will most likely occur at the same time as Paradeigma. Note that the enemies summoned from Paradeigma will not rotate, meaning that you will need to predict where they will end up and move to a safe spot before the arena is rotated.
- Triple Esoteric Ray: Zodiark will charge three lasers from the top of the arena. Either the middle ray or side rays will fire first, giving you time to move into the area where the previous ray fired.
- Algedon: Zodiark will quickly move to the corner of the arena on his left or right and, after a short delay, charge forward, knocking back any player inside the AoE. If you are close enough to the edge, this attack will knock you off the arena. To avoid Algedon, quickly move to the adjacent side of the arena, outside of the large AoE.
- Astral Eclipse: Zodiark will fly into the sky and begin summoning meteors in the air. Each side of the arena will have a different pattern of meteors that you must dodge. The orientation you see the patterns in the sky is how you would see them from directly above. For example, in the image above, the meteor on the bottom left will actually fall on the top left of the arena, if you are looking at the meteors as they fall. Keep this in mind when positioning yourself to doge Astral Eclipse.
- Trimorphos Exoterikos: Zodiark will use Exoterikos on all three sides of the arena, creating three different shapes you will need to dodge. Remember the AoEs created by each shape and react accordingly.
When Zodiark reaches roughly 75 percent health remaining, he will use Complete Control, moving the fight into phase 2.
In phase 2, Zodiark will use the same attacks as before, plus the ones listed below.
As the fight continues, Zodiark will begin to overlap these attacks and use them more frequently. The main things you'll need to watch out for are Trimorphos Exoterikos and Paradeigma, as these attacks together can heavily restrict the area you are safe in.
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