Partners (パートナー, Pātonā)? are a game mechanic in Shin Megami Tensei IV Apocalypse.
Shin Megami Tensei IV ApocalypseEdit
Much like other game mechanics from the original Shin Megami Tensei IV were changed by taking in account player feedback, partners are a refined version of the guest ally system from the previous game.
Partners, much like other party members, have their own HP, level, and resistances. They can be targeted by enemies, but it is impossible for an enemy to hit both the party and the partner. Even "hit all" skills will target either the party or the partner. The party cannot restore the partner's HP or buff them in any fashion, though partners with healing skills can heal either the party or themselves. The same is true for revival or other support skills. When a partner is knocked unconscious they will automatically revive after a certain number of turns has passed. If a partner is unconscious at the end of a battle they won't gain any experience points. On the plus side they will automatically be restored to full HP at the end of battles, even if they had not yet revived themselves.
Multiple partners are avaiable, joining or leaving the party at certain points of the story. If more than one partner is currently traveling with the party, the player can choose which will participate in battle. Each partner has a different skillset and will assist the party in different ways. If the partner dodges or nulls an enemy's attack, the enemy will lose Turn Presses. Partners normally act at the end of the player's turn, performing one action before the enemy's turn which means they cannot gain extra turns even if they hit an enemy's weakness or strike a critical hit. The only exception to this is Gaston, who can sometimes attack at the start of the player's turn. When this happens, Gaston may act for multiple turns and will use the player's turns when attacking, meaning that he can win turns due to weakness/critical hits even if he won't necessarily use them. On the other hand, this means he'll lose turns if an enemy dodges his attacks.
Some partners have skills that aren't inherently theirs, but instead the skill of a demon they will briefly summon to aid them. When the Demon Summoning Program becomes unusable thanks to the Tokugawa Mandala, those skills will become unavaiable which can severely hinder some partners' usefulness. All partners are immune to ailments, including positive ones like Smirk. In a Reincarnation New Game Plus, all partners will have their levels and skills carried over, including the Awakened Power passives that are learned at certain points of the story. The partial exception to this rule is Hallelujah, as his offensive skills are tied to the event where he reveals his demonic heritage to the other characters. Once that happens his entire skillset will be unlocked, including Awakened Power.
Partners will never attack an enemy with a skill that would be nulled, repelled, or drained. This is done to prevent partners from causing enemies to Smirk. If there's nothing a partner can do, they will skip their turn. Once the partner's turn has ended, a gauge on the bottom of the screen called Assist Gauge will fill a little. Once the gauge is full, all partners will interrupt the enemy's turn, using support skills (if avaiable) on the party before attacking the enemy. It'll then be the player's turn again and the Assist Gauge will reset. Some answers given to bosses during battles may fill or empty the gauge.
List of PartnersEdit
- Asahi: Summons demons in order to heal the player's party or remove ailments. However, those demons may sometimes disobey her and instead physically attack the enemy. By herself, Asahi can only perform a weak physical attack or bestow Smirk to an ally.
- Navarre: Has access to buffs and debuffs. He will attack the enemy with elemental stones taken from the player's inventory. Being a ghost, Navarre is the only partner who's not immune to Expel.
- Nozomi: Uses gun skills and can use her camera's flash to debuff the enemy with a chance of inflicting ailments.
- Hallelujah: Summons a demon to either protect the party from ailments or grant them endure. By himself, Hallelujah will automatically return a lost demon to the party.
- Gaston: Uses strong physical skills.
- Toki: Uses physical skills that can either instantly kill, debuff, or inflict ailments.
- Isabeau: Can buff, heal, and attack with single target elemental skills.