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Final Fantasy 7 Remake guide: Assess Materia and Ability

And why to use it in every battle

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Final Fantasy 7 Remake Assess Materia and ability guide Image: Square Enix via Polygon
Jeffrey Parkin (he/him) has been writing video game guides for Polygon for almost seven years. He has learned to love just about every genre of game that exists.

Not long into Final Fantasy 7 Remake’s third chapter, “Home Sweet Slum,” you’ll meet a character named Chadley in the Sector 7 Slums. When you talk to him the first time, he’ll give you an Assess Materia and ask you to do some research for him. The ability that Materia gives you will quickly become one of the strongest tools you have.

In this guide, we’ll explain what that Assess Materia ability does, and why you’ll want to use it in (nearly) every single fight.

Assess Materia and Assess Ability

Final Fantasy 7 Remake Chadley Assess Materia
You’ll meet Chadley in the Sector 7 Slums.
Image: Square Enix via Polygon

Chadley gives you a yellow Command Materia. When you equip this into one of your party’s slots, they’ll get a new Ability in the Command Menu called Assess.

In combat, you can spend an ATB point to use this ability on one enemy. You’ll get a screen (that pauses the fight) displaying Enemy Intel.

Final Fantasy 7 Remake Assess Materia ability enemy intel weaknesses strategy
The Assess ability shows you Enemy Intel, including what types of damage an enemy is weak to.
Image: Square Enix via Polygon

On the left side, you’ll have a quick bio for the enemy. Below that, in yellow text, there will be a quick hint about strategy and how to approach combat with this enemy. At the bottom of the left side, you’ll get information about rewards and loot for defeating them.

On the right side, you’ll see a list of their weaknesses, resistances, and immunities. You should focus on Weaknesses / Status Ailments — the icon next to that is the kind of damage you should focus on dealing. (Hit L1 for a legend of all the icons.) At the bottom, you’ll see your history with this type of enemy.

You can pull up that Enemy Intel at any time from your pause menu. You can also pull it up quickly by targeting an enemy and hitting the trackpad. If you haven’t Assessed a type of enemy before, the Enemy Intel will be filled in with question marks.

Assess every enemy and boss

Fights in Final Fantasy 7 Remake are about dealing damage, obviously, but many enemies you face (and especially bosses) have huge health bars. You can brute force your way through them with constant basic attacks, but it’s smarter and much faster to focus on their weaknesses.

Use the Assess ability on every enemy you encounter, including bosses. Once you know what type of damage they’re weak or resistant to, you can modify your attacks to match.

For example, if you see that a Security Officer is weak to Fire, you know to use that spell instead of, say, Thunder. Exploiting those weaknesses will dramatically change how long fights take (and result in you taking less damage and using fewer healing items).

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