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Hello everyone, I'm NLM, a speedrunner, memer and D012 rookie. This is my first post and as the title says, it's about in depth assist mechanics for Duodecim. As such I won't post general info that's common knowledge already. Now I felt this post was needed because 1) there seems to be some misconceptions about how some AST mechanics work and 2) I couldn't believe how underexplored the assist system was after all these years. For better understanding all results/assist related quantities will be shown as percentage (%), with 50% being 1 AST bar and 100% a full gauge with 2 bars. Finally, Official ruleset's default AST gain values were used for these tests. Index: 1) Assist Gauge Charge 2) Side by Side 3) A Comrade's Vow 4) AST Gauge Up Dash 5) EXP to AST 6) AST depletion & depletion rate 7) AST Duration 😎 AST Gauge Time 9) Final Strike's AST bonuses 10) AST Lock 1) Assist Gauge Charge (aka AST Charge) AST Charge refers to the amount of AST gain whenever you perform an action. The actions that can grant you AST Charge are: -Performing an attack (default) -Connecting the attack (default) -Dashing (requires AST Gauge Up Dash) -Receiving damage (requires A Comrade's Vow) -Dealing HP damage (requires EXP to AST/Side by Side) Let's start by talking about the first two: -AST Charge (Attack) is the amount of AST you get whenever you perform an attack, regardless of if it hits or not. This is a 5% gain for the first move you use in a battle. If you keep repeating it without pause you'll get 0 gain, otherwise you'll get another 5% if you keep using the same attack. However, every time you use a different attack you get a 7.5% gain instead. -AST Charge (Hit) is the amount of AST you get whenever you connect an attack (and keep hitting). For most BRV attacks the gain is 3-5% and for the BRV part of most HP attacks it's 1-3%. Beware that the HP hit will never grant you any AST gain unless you have Side by Side/EXP to AST equipped. As for the AST Charge bonus, it's like the "forbidden bonus" in D012. Only the Final Strike set (which I talk about below) and the AI-only accessories give you this bonus (and Artifacts, too, but that's pretty rare to get). Basically AST Charge multiplies the AST gain from all Attack, Hit, A Comrade's Vow and Dash. So if you get a +50% bonus, and you keep using Yuna's Heavenly Strike (the Shiva BRV attack), you'd get 5*1.5 = 7.5% AST gain per attack. Finally, no AST is gained when using an EX Burst. 2) Side by Side This is pretty straightforward: Side by Side grants you a 30% AST gain whenever you connect an HP hit, regardless of your BRV number. 3) A Comrade's Vow There are quite a few misconceptions out there about how this accessory works. The way this accessory works is that, whenever you're damaged, the base bravery damage of the attack is taken into account. So regardless of whether I'm Lv 1 and have 12 DEF or if I'm Lv 100 and have 111 DEF, the amount of AST I'll gain when hit by a Jecht Stream will be the same, even if I receive 4,000 BRV damage at Lv1 or 300 at Lv100. The formula for the AST gain (%) A Comrade's Vow provides is as follows: Base damage*0.15*multipliers/10 Beware that for hits that BRV Wall Rush, you'll get again the last value when you get wall rushed. So, for example, let's say you get hit by a Jecht Rush just like the AST one, and your multipliers show 5.0. The base damage for Jecht Rush is 42. According to the formula, you should get a 3.15% AST gain. However, the last hit has 19 base damage. So if you get wall rushed, you'd get an extra 1.425% AST gain. Beware that the damage you receive from the opponent's assist will also increase your assist. As you can see, this accessory requires pretty high multipliers to be effective, as otherwise the AST gain will be very little. Finally, it's also better when fighting against characters that rely on strong attacks that cause BRV wall rush to connect their AST -> HP combos and powerful assists (such as Garland with Kuja or Sephiroth assist). 4) AST Gauge Up Dash With this ability equipped you gain AST by using Air/Free Air/Ground dashes. To gain AST with Reverse dashes you need to equip at least one of these three as well. The AST gain is 0.1% per active dash frame. You can look up the active dash frames of each character here: http://community.dissidia.wiki/topic/136-in-depth-dash-mechanics-ddff/ So, for example, if Yuna uses a "full" Free Air Dash (from beginning to end) she'll have 98 active dash frames and gain 9.8% AST (tested with Free Air Dash Boost equipped). The average AST gain when spot dashing seems to be about 10%/second. More testing will be done in the future to confirm this for sure. 5) EXP to AST Let's say this in a format it's easily understood: without EXP boosts, you get approximately 3% AST per 1,000 HP damage (both players being at Lv100). However, if you face a CPU opponent with Maximum strength you'll get a 140% EXP bonus, making it 7.2% AST gain per 1,000 HP damage (thanks to Muggshotter for finding out the CPU strength multiplier). Notice that EXP to AST happens again if you HP wall rush, giving an extra bonus. 6) AST depletion & depletion rate This is rather intuitive but here we go anyway. AST "natural" depletion (not the AST Depletion on HP attack) happens 2 seconds after your last AST gain (NOT after your attack animation). So if you're Exdeath and use Black Hole (and it misses), you'll notice you start losing AST pretty quickly, pretty much by the time the animation ends. You can prevent AST depletion by performing an attack, even if Exdeath for example spams Reverse Polarity non-stop without dodging and gets no AST gain (Attack), it will still reset the AST depletion timer. As for the depletion rate: a 100% filled AST gauge (2 bars) gets depleted in 10 seconds. 7) AST Duration There are some misconceptions about this as well. AST Duration is a mechanic that only takes place when the AST gauge is full, and prevents the AST gauge from depleting when you're not attacking. This lasts 9 seconds without boosts, and again starts when you get the AST gain that fills the bar, not when the animation ends/after the AST gauge stops glowing. I know, 9 seconds seems like a weird number, but I can confirm it is that way and equipping Death Penalty will result in 11.7 seconds for AST Duration, for example. Performing an attack while the gauge is full will reset the timer for AST Duration. 😎 AST Gauge Time This is a different mechanic available only by equipping Bartz's Hellfire (bonuses stack every time you equip it). AST Gauge Time boosts both Duration AND delays the AST depletion depending on your bonus. So if you equip Hellfire 3 times (30% boost), you'll get a 11.7s duration and the AST gauge will start depleting 2.6 seconds after your last AST gain (rather than after the usual 2 seconds). 9) Final Strike's AST bonuses Lastly, there are also misconceptions about the AST bonuses this set gives. Some people thought these to be much higher but after testing them I found they're significantly lower. The AST boosts are: -AST Charge: +10% -AST Duration: +45% Beware that the AST Charge bonus from Final Strike is bugged and doesn't boost AST gain (Attack), although it does boost all other three. Still, +10% AST Charge means that, if Yuna's Meteor Strike (the Ifrit BRV attack) normally gives a 3% AST gain (Hit), it'll give an extra 0.3% upon hitting. 10) AST Lock AST Lock happens when your assist character is attacked or blocked (if they use a Melee attack). This lasts 1250F, which is 20.83 seconds approximately. The amount of AST you'll have after recovering from it is the same amount you had right as you AST locked. So, if you have 90% AST and escape and attack with an AST Lock, you'll have 90 - 50 = 40% AST a moment before the AST Lock, and so once you recover from AST Lock the AST Gauge will be at 40%.