While experience points are vital as with any role-playing game, in Final Fantasy 15 AP is perhaps all the more important for the new skills and abilities they will bestow upon your party.
If you've had a glance over the Ascension ability tree, you'll notice there are a lot of ability nodes to unlock, some of which cost hundreds of AP at a time, so you'll want to rack them up as soon as you can.
Interestingly, AP doesn't just drop at a steady rate while you play, but is a resource to earn just like EXP, and there are always opportunities to get more everywhere you go.
AP farming - how to get hundreds of AP per hour
If you want to get a chunk of AP fast and don't mind a spot of grinding, then it's recommend you find a group of low level enemies you can quickly kill with Warp Strikes over and over (receiving 1 AP a pop) as well as the Fanfare gear that comes with the free Holiday Pack DLC to receive additional AP for A+ ranks when you end each battle.
One useful location is one recently found west Duscae of near the Disc of Cauthess, which the following YouTube video by Madness Gaming (via Reddit) explains, netting 816 AP an hour and tons of Gil and EXP to match. You'll need the monster whistle to call enemies to your location (you'll pick it up by Chapter 5) and to be there when it's not raining, otherwise it's a simple case of killing them over and over.
Having the below AP boosts as well will help you gains, too, so consider doing some work first to maximise your efforts:
AP sources: How to earn AP fast in the Final Fantasy 15
Otherwise, the secret to gaining AP is there are few single easy solutions that gives you tens or hundreds of points at once, but should be built into common activities so that you get a steady trickle over time.
With the right approach, practically every activity will hand out a small amount of AP as a side effect, and you'll be building it up without even trying as you complete the game's many quests and diversions.
Performing specific kills and abilities in battle - The way to accumulate AP the fastest throughout the game is if kill an enemy with special moves - specifically Link Strikes, Parry Kills and Warp Strike kills.
The easiest of the bunch is the Warp Strike kill, since you can just keep an eye on each enemy's health, and when it's low enough, zip across the map and finish them off for an easy 1 AP point. It's not much on the face of it, but do it when clearing simple enemies in the wild, and it'll add up fast.
Equipping AP boosting Gear: As part of the post-release Holiday Pack DLC (which is freely available from the PSN and Xbox Live stores), the game introduced several three 'Fanfare' items you can equip in the Gear slot. They are:
- Blitzer's Fanfare (provides additional AP when earning A+ in Time outside of training)
- Warrior's Fanfare (provides additional AP when earning A+ in Offence outside of training)
- Tactician's Fanfare provides additional AP when earning A+ in Finesse outside of training)
Downloading the Holiday Pack DLC will automatically add it to your inventory ready to be equipped; though it generally depends on your fighting style, we highly recommend having the Blitzer's Fanfare and Warrior's Fanfare equipped at all times (any character in your party will suffice) since you'll almost certainly get an A+ rank in these for most battles, especially if you are farming low level creatures. This is very easy AP - usually one or two AP per battle - that adds up very fast, so equip it as soon as you can to reap the benefits.
Leveling up - The most straightforward - but somewhat lengthy - way to get AP is to simply gain experience, with each character dishing out 3 AP points when they level up. The advantage of simply focusing on EXP is the base stats of your characters also increases - which is just as important for dealing with tougher enemies and dungeons - so consider looking for easy EXP gains if you're also after a little more AP too.
Tours - If you're after a quick dose of AP, then participate in one of the tours across the world. These are character specific interactions, and while some can take a short amount of time, are essentially dialogue trees that you can do at any level. These are logged as green missions in your Quest book, and provide 20 AP each.
Story interactions - Similarly, there are moments in the story as well as some side-quests where you a dialogue tree that gives you a handful of AP or EXP as you do them, so again playing the main quests can give you a little AP here and there.
Training with Gladio - When you reach a campsite, as well as the option to rest for the night, you can also take part in training with Gladio. These 'drill' exercises give you 5 AP per completed tier.
You'll also want to unlock specific Ascension nodes so that every spell or Armiger you cast gives you AP - which we explain a little more detail below.
Need more help? Our Final Fantasy 15 guide and walkthrough can provide tips on main story, as well as the open-world's many quests and activities. Learning how to get AP fast, EXP fast and money or Gil fast will aid you in many optional dungeons and tombs - including how to open and explore their locked doors. There's also plenty of interesting side-quests, too, such as the Scraps of Mystery and Professors Protege frog locations. And if you want to get around easier, you can rent a Chocobo, learn the infinite sprint trick and later in the game, get the flying car Regalia Type F. There's also more to see and do with DLC, such as Episode Gladiolus and Episode Prompto.
Ascension nodes - If you're serious about AP gains, then you should invest your first AP points into the Exploration part of the menu that gives you AP for doing other activities (the AP amount of brackets is the cost to unlock):
- Road-running (32 AP) - Earn AP from driving in the Regalia
- Choco-bump (32 AP) - Earn AP from riding your Chocobo
- Choco-jockey (32 AP) - Earn AP from winning Chocobo Races
- Aperture (333 AP) - Earn AP from specific photographs
- Angler Action (18 AP) - Earn AP from catching fish
- Sport-fishing (99 AP) - Earn more AP from catching big fish
- Happy Camping (20 AP) - Earn AP when you visit a new camp site
- Happier Camping (48 AP) Earn extra AP when you visit a new camp site
- Appetize (20 AP) - Earn AP when you cook a member's favourite food
We'd recommend Road-running (using the Regalia), Choco-bump (using the Chocobo), Happy Camping (camping in a new spot) and Magic Action (below - from casting a spell) first since these are all activities you'll be doing throughout the game on a regular basis, then buy the others when you are delving into those specific tasks.
There are also AP boosters from the Armiger and Magic areas too:
- Armiger Action (48 AP) - Earn AP when you use an Armiger ability
- Armiger Chain Reaction (48 AP) - Earn AP when you use an Armiger ability
- Magic Action (24 AP) - Earn AP when you cast a spell