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Final Fantasy 7 Remake guide: Airbuster boss fight

How to take down the Airbuster after the second Mako reactor

Image: Square Enix via Polygon
Ryan Gilliam (he/him) has worked at Polygon for nearly seven years. He primarily spends his time writing guides for massively popular games like Diablo 4 & Destiny 2.

In Final Fantasy 7 Remake, you’ll face the Airbuster after Avalanche's failed attack on the second Mako reactor. On your way to the boss, you can remove some of its abilities, but the Airbuster can be a real pain no matter what you choose. This fight is long and frustrating, so prepare yourself with loads of lightning Materia.

In this guide, we’ll show you how to take down the Airbuster in Chapter 7 of Final Fantasy 7 Remake.

Airbuster’s Battle Intel and weaknesses

Attack the Airbuster with lightning
Image: Square Enix via Polygon

The Airbuster’s only weakness is lightning materia. After facing down the Scorpion Sentinel and the Crab Warden, you should already be pretty familiar with using this spell. Equip it on as many characters as you can.

How to beat Airbuster

The Airbuster is a huge pain in Final Fantasy 7 Remake, because you don’t have any single mechanic that you can focus on to make the fight go faster. You just need to beat the boss down as much as you can within the 20-minute time limit.

Here are some tips to make your attempt against the Airbuster a bit easier.

Switch characters
Block the Airbuster’s bullets
Image: Square Enix via Polygon

At the start of the fight, Cloud is isolated away from Tifa and Barret, with the boss between them. The Airbuster likes to focus its attacks on one side of the arena, meaning you should swap between the characters frequently. If the Airbuster turns toward you, swap to another teammate.

The Airbuster loves to stun you and then attack with a power move, so just keep swapping characters and preparing potions and healing spells for allies that get stunned. If the boss starts shooting at you unexpectedly, block the bullets to lessen damage taken.

Run from Tankbuster

When the Airbuster moves into the second phase, it’ll scoot back in the arena, letting your team reunite and turning the arena into a T shape. With your melee characters, you’ll need to stand in front of the boss to deal damage.

The Airbuster will occasionally charge up an ability called Tankbuster, which deals tons of damage in a line in front of the boss. When you see this, take Cloud and Tifa and run to the outer areas of the arena to get out of the boss’ vision. Stick back in these areas with Barret as much as possible.

Focus on the arms

The boss will eventually detach its arms and send them to attack your party members or create a protective barrier in front of itself. This is the part of the fight where you need to rely on Barret. Blast the arms with his guns until they move to the outer sections of the arena — then beat them down with melee attacks.

Use Barret in the later half
Use Barret to reach the Airbuster when it flies away
Image: Square Enix via Polygon

After the arms are gone, the Airbuster will float out of the arena, toward where the hologram was before the fight started. The boss spends a lot of time out here, just floating around, lobbing attacks at your party. Swap to Barret and decimate the Airbuster with bullets and lightning.

When the boss moves closer to the platform, switch back to Cloud or Tifa, but you should spend most of this section as Barret, thanks to his long-range attacks.