The Ultimate Guide to Buffs and Debuffs

Let’s explore everything there is to know about buffs and debuffs in Octopath Traveler: Champions of the Continent.

The Basics of Buffs & Debuffs #

  1. There are 6 “brackets” of buffs and 6 “brackets” of debuffs in the Global version.
  2. Each bracket has a 30% cap.
  3. Buffs and debuffs from the same unit using the same skill do not stack, but they will increase the effect duration.
    • e.g Lynette’s unboosted 20% PATK/EATK buff used twice in a row will still result in just a 20% buff, but will last 4 turns.
  4. Buffs and debuffs from different abilities can stack, and they will increase the effect duration.
    • e.g Lynette’s unboosted 20% PATK/EATK buff will stack together with Iris’ unboosted 15% PATK buff to reach 30% PATK for 4 turns and 20% EATK for 2 turns.
  5. Max buff/debuff duration is 9 turns.

What are the 12 Brackets? #

  1. Active Skills
    • DMG Up
    • Enemy Res Down
    • Stat Up (raw stats like PATK/EATK/CRIT)
    • Enemy Stat Down (PDEF or EDEF)
  2. Passive Skills from unit or equipment
    • DMG Up
    • Enemy Res Down
    • Stat Up (raw stats like PATK/EATK/CRIT)
    • Enemy Stat Down (PDEF or EDEF)
  3. Ultimates
    • DMG Up
    • Enemy Res Down
    • Stat Up (raw stats like PATK/EATK/CRIT)
    • Enemy Stat Down (PDEF or EDEF)

We call buffs/debuffs to stats Group 1.

And buffs/debuffs to DMG Group 2.

And buffs/debuffs to Resistances Group 3.

And buffs/debuffs from Ultimates Group 4.

What is the Math Behind Stacking

Let’s assume pre-buff, our Sword’s physical damage dealt is 10,000.

With the following list of hypothetical buffs/debuffs, let’s see how the math works out:

  1. 20% PATK buff from skill
  2. 15% PATK buff from passive
  3. 40% Sword DMG Up from skill
  4. 20% Sword DMG Up from passive
  5. 10% Sword Res Down from skill
  6. 15% PDEF Down from skill
  7. 35% PDEF down from passive

Step 1: Figure out the caps.

  • With that list of hypothetical buffs/debuffs, we can immediately notice something off. The cap is 30%, so buff #3 and debuff #7 drops down to 30%.

Step 2: Figure out which groups they belong to, and sum the values together.

  • Remember, Group 1 are stats related. Group 2 are DMG related. Group 3 are resistances related.
  • Group 1: #1, #2, #6, #7 = (0.20+0.15+0.15+0.30) = 0.8
  • Group 2: #3, #4 = (0.30+0.20) = 0.5
  • Group 3: #5 = 0.1

Step 3: Do the math.

10,000 x (1 + 0.8) x (1 + 0.5) x (1 + 0.10) = 29,700.

That’s a 2.97x multiplier to damage.

Because of math, buffs/debuffs that belong to separate Groups are going to be stronger.

15% from Group 1 and 15% from Group 2 is considered a 1.322x, while 30% from Group 1 and 0% from Group 2 is considered a 1.3x.

Buff Debuff Cheatsheet

What Bypasses the 30% Rule? #

There are a few exceptions to the rule.

  1. In the future, Hell weapons (the special effects of Hell has their own separate cap, to a maximum of 200%)
  2. Status ailment resistance can go as high as 100% (immune)
  3. Enemy’s self buff and debuff on your units can go up to 50%
  4. EXP and Leaves bonus go up to 50%, although these aren’t considered buffs/debuffs

What happens if you have two separate DMG up or Stats buffs/debuffs? Which one takes priority? #

Q: If you have 20% Ice DMG Up from unit skill and 20% Tome DMG Up from another unit skill, which one takes priority?

A: They are both active, but damaging skills can only be weapon-related or elemental related. If you use a Tome attack, you get the 20% Tome buff applied. If using Ice skill, you get the 20% Ice Dmg buff.

Q: What if you have 20% Ice DMG Up and 20% Break DMG Up from passives, which one takes priority during a break with an ice attack?

A: It doesn’t matter which one takes priority as the end result is the same: 30% DMG Up buff for the damage calculation.

Q: What if you have two stats up buff, like 20% PATK Up and 20% Critical Hit Up, are they both applied?

A: Yes, they are both applied at 20% each.

Q: So a debuff like Viola’s that reduces enemy PDEF/EDEF by 20%… does that mean the overall debuff is 20% and 10%?

A: No, the enemy is debuffed by both 20% PDEF and 20% EDEF. Damage in this game is either physical or elemental, and the damage formula will only consider one or the other. If your attack is physical, the formula will consider enemy’s 20% PDEF debuff and likewise for magical. 

What is Wrong with Scarecrow’s pASSives? #

Scarecrow has two passives that boosts DMG Up, one for 20% damage up during Break, and the other for 20% DMG Up during a critical hit.

Unfortunately, he’s capped at 30% as both of these belong in the same group and the same bracket. So if he critical hits during a break, 10% of his passive is wasted.

Why are “Random” multi-attacks that can debuff so powerful? #

Units like Sofia and Primrose that “hit 3-times to random enemies and apply a 15% resistance debuff for 2 turns”, will stack with itself in turn duration but not potency. If they hit a single enemy 3 times, they are debuffed for 6 turns.

How Do Buffs & Debuffs From Allies Work? #

They are treated as unit skills and belong to the respective brackets.  

How Do Buffs & Debuffs From Enemies Work? #

Unlike players, enemies’ buff/debuff to YOU are capped at 50%.

Enemies can use the same buff/debuff on YOU and it’ll stack in potency and effect duration.

How Do DEF Buffs Work? #

PDEF and EDEF buffs are straight up damage mitigation, and does not scale from your unit’s PDEF or EDEF. A 30% PDEF buff on a unit means they take 30% less damage from all physical attacks. 

Why are Buffs/Debuffs from “Ultimates” so Powerful? #

Aside from the fact that ultimate buffs/debuffs belong in their separate brackets, they can also stack in turn duration with existing buffs/debuffs on the enemy.

For example, Lynette’s ultimate can boost Front Row PATK/EATK/SPEED by 20%. This will stack multiplicatively with Primrose’s 20% PATK/EATK/SPEED skill buff and stack in turn duration.

Sources/Links #

Buff/Debuff Finder



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