How To Obtain Final Fantasy VII's Limit Breaks, Part 1

Ever wanted to find all the characters' Limit Breaks? Now's your chance!

Final Fantasy VII introduces many gamers to the concept of characters who have sustained a certain amount of damage having access to a special attack. Although this special attack goes by various names in various games, in Final Fantasy VII it’s called a Limit Break.

The Basics

During battle you’ll notice a gauge labeled “Limit.” To trigger a Limit Break that gauge must be full, and once it is, in place of that character’s normal attack you’ll have access to their limit break. Filling the Limit Gauge is simple. Every time a character takes damage from an enemy, the Limit Gauge will fill a little bit. Get hit enough and eventually you’ll get a Limit Break.

Advanced Strategy

However, just because you get a Limit Break doesn’t mean you have to use it. The Limit Gauge retains its level of fullness between battles, so if you get a Limit Break during one battle, you can carry it to another. Since Limit Breaks are among the most powerful attacks in the game, filling your gauge before a boss battle can be a huge part of your battle strategy.

There are a few ways to increase filling your character’s Limit Gauge. The simplest is to simplify place the characters whose gauges you don’t want to fill in the back row. Enemies attack characters in the front row much more frequently, so your choice character’s Limit Gauge will fill that much faster. To facilitate the process even further, equip the character whose Limit Gauge you’re trying to fill with the Cover Materia. This way if the enemy happens to attack another character, your choice one will have a chance to take the blow instead. Additionally, the “Hyper” status causes the Limit Gauge to fill at twice the normal rate at the expense of attack accuracy. It’s worth it to make the character whose Limit Break you’re attempting to trigger Hyper and when you’re finished cure the Hyper status with a Tranquilizer.

How To Get More Limit Breaks

For years I had no clue how you obtained new Limit Breaks in Final Fantasy VII. You won’t find an explanation in-game or any sort of counter in the menus. It can seem like a random process, but with seven out of nine characters it’s exactly the same.

For All Characters Except Cait Sith and Vincent Valentine

For most of the characters in the game, unlocking Limit Breaks is the same process. There are four levels of Limit Breaks. Each character starts with the first Level 1 Limit Break. To unlock the second Level 1 Limit Break, they’ll have to use the first one eight times. To unlock the first Level 2 Limit Break, a character simply has to kill 80 enemies. Then the process repeats to obtain the next Limit Breaks. Once you collect the six Limit Breaks for a character, you will meet the requirements to unlock their Level 4 Limit Break. Unlike the previous Limit Breaks, Level 4 Limit Breaks must be unlocked by questing for an item. The character-specific sections below will detail how to obtain the items necessary to unlock each character’s Level 4 Limit Break.

Vincent only requires 60 kills to advance in Limit Break level. Additionally, he only has one Limit Break per level, as his Limit Break transforms him into a unique creature for the rest of the battle.

Cait Sith only has two Limit Breaks. He starts with the first one and after he kills 80 enemies he gets the second. He has none that must be unlocked with an item.

Limit Breaks By Character

Level 1

How to Obtain: Starting Limit Break

Description: Cloud jumps into the air and brings his sword down on the enemy. It causes a moderate amount of damage and targets one enemy.

Cross-Slash

How to Obtain: Use Braver eight times.

Description: Cloud cuts an enemy in the pattern of the Kanji “Kyou.” It does moderate damage and paralyzes. It targets one enemy.

Level 2

Blade Beam

How to Obtain: Kill 80 enemies with Cloud.

Description: Cloud strikes the ground and blasts a beam from his sword toward an enemy. The initial blast does moderate damage to the initial enemy and smaller blasts branch off, doing low damage to any other enemy.

Climhazzard

How to Obtain: Use Blade Beam eight times.

Description: Cloud stabs into an enemy with his sword and cuts upward with a leap. Does heavy damage to one enemy.

Level 3

Meteorain

How to Obtain: Kill an additional 80 enemies with Cloud after obtaining Blade Beam.

Description: Cloud jumps into the air and fires six meteors from his sword. These target enemies at random and each strike causes low damage.

Finishing Touch

How to Obtain: Cloud must use Meteorain eight times.

Description: Cloud swings his sword around and causes a tornado which destroys all regular enemies instantly. Against bosses it does moderate damage to all targets.

Level 4

Omnislash

How to Obtain: After obtaining all previous Limit Breaks, use the Omnislash item to unlock it. To obtain the Omnislash item, you must purchase it at the Gold Saucer Battle Square for 64,000 Battle Points on Disc 1 or 32,000 Battle Points on Disc 2.

Description: Cloud executes a 15-hit combo, striking enemies at random for moderate damage each hit.

Level 1

Healing Wind

How to Obtain: Starting Limit Break

Description: Aeris calls forth a breeze that heals each character for ½ their max HP.

Seal Evil

How to Obtain: Use Healing Wind eight times.

Description: Rays of light dazzle the enemy. Casts the effects of Stop and Silence on all enemies.

Level 2

Breath of the Earth

How to Obtain: Aeris must kill 80 enemies.

Description: Light encircles each party member and all status effects, even positive ones, are dispelled.

Fury Brand

How to Obtain: Use Breath of the Earth eight times.

Description: Electricity envelopes the party, each character’s Limit Gauge besides Aeris’ is filled instantly.

Level 3

Planet Protector

How to Obtain: Kill an additional 80 enemies after obtaining Breath of the Earth.

Description: Stars encircle the party and every character becomes immune to damage for a short time.

Pulse of Life

How to Obtain: Use Planet Protector eight times.

Description: Shimmering light refills the HP and MP gauges of all characters. If any characters are knocked out, this also revives them.

Level 4

Great Gospel

How to Obtain: After obtaining the previous six Limit Breaks, use the Great Gospel item, wait until you have the Buggy and drive it to Costa Del Sol. Take the boat back to Junon and when you exit the city you’ll still be in the Buggy. Head north to the river and drive until you reach the shallows that the Buggy can cross. You’ll see a cave close by and in it is an old man who will know how many battles you’ve fought. You may have to wait and re-enter the cave to trigger this message. When the last two digits of the amount of battles you’ve fought match, he’ll give you an item. If he doesn’t give you the Mithril on your first try,  you’ll have to fight 10 more battles and come back. Once you have the Mithril go back to Gongaga and give it to the Blacksmith. He’ll let you choose between gaining a big box or a little box. Open the little box and you’ll get Great Gospel.

Description: A beam of light from the sky refills everyone’s HP and MP and raises any knocked out party members. It also grants the party invisibility for a short time.

Tifa Lockhart

Tifa’s Limit Breaks have the added element of a reel that can allow for extra damage if you land on a “Yeah!” space. However if you land on a “Miss!” space that attack won’t cause damage to the enemy. You don’t have to stop the reels and often it’s not worth the risk to try. Also each of her Limit Break combos with the last, so by the time you get her Level 4 Limit Break she’ll do a seven-move combo.

Level 1

Beat Rush

How to Obtain: Starting Limit Break

Description: A fairly weak punch combo.

Somersault

How to Obtain: Use Beat Rush eight times.

Description: A somersault kick to the enemy. Does low damage.

Level 2

Water Kick

How to Obtain: Kill 80 enemies with Tifa.

Description: A moderately powerful low kick.

Meteodrive

How to Obtain: Use Water Kick eight times.

Description: Tifa suplexes one enemy, causing moderate damage.

Level 3

Dolphin Blow

How to Obtain: After obtaining Water Kick, kill an additional 80 enemies.

Description: Tifa uppercuts the enemy so hard it summons a dolphin.

Meteor Strike

How to Obtain: Use Dolphin Blow eight times.

Description: Tifa grabs an enemy, leaps up, and tosses them to the ground.

Level 4

Final Heaven

How to Obtain: After learning all six previous Limit Breaks, use the Final Heaven item on Tifa to unlock this. To obtain the Final Heaven item, wait until Cloud is back in charge of the party after the events of Mideel and return to Tifa’s house in Nibelheim. Go to the piano and play the notes: Do, Re, Mi, Ti, La, Do, Re, Mi, So, Fa, Do, Re, Mi. After watching a short scene you’ll receive the item Final Heaven.

Description: Tifa charges her fist and punches the enemy, making the ground explode.