Having first released in Japan on January 31st, 1997 Final Fantasy VII is recognized by many as one of the best entries in the series and often gets thrown around in the conversation of best JRPGs ever made. The game was massive when it came out, taking up four discs. It's chock-full of content and features a rich world ripe for exploration and a smooth combat system that encourages players to explore and master its features and intricacies. With a remake on the way, fans are cautiously waiting to see how the game will transition into the modern era – and while there’s no doubt that the people at Square Enix are working hard to make it meet expectations, these are incredibly big shoes to fill.
As was previously stated, battles in Final Fantasy VII are a highlight of the game and really draw you in. There are a ton of challenging boss fights and enemy encounters that don’t just force you to level grind, but strategize and think through your plan of attack and what kind of party, Materia, items, and skills that includes. We’ll be taking a look at some of the weakest and strongest creatures in the game and rank them based on strength. Some are normal random encounters while others are big boss fights with the odd superboss thrown in for good measure.
Here are 30 creatures from Final Fantasy VII ranked from weakest to most powerful.
30 Guard Hound
We start off our list with a relatively easy foe to take care of. It might look a little intimidating, but Guard Hound is hands down one of the easiest fights you’ll have in all of Final Fantasy VII.
Guard Hound will always go and attack the party member with the lowest HP. It has two moves; Bite and Tentacle. Its tunnel vision in battle makes it easy to barrage with your unoccupied party members. There are definitely scarier enemies in the game.
29 Whole Eater
Our next creature is also encountered fairly early in game and much like Guard Hound, isn’t all that much of a challenge. Though it may seem like a tough opponent, Whole Eater is a one trick pony that shouldn’t take too long to take care of.
It only knows one move and attacks your party at random. The only thing to watch out for with this guy is that it has a 1/8 chance of hitting twice in one turn should its current HP be over half of its max HP. Even then, this doesn’t make it anything to worry about.
28 Hell House
So we’re now getting to an opponent that may prove to be something of a challenge for the area you’re in. Found within Sector 6, Hell House actually provides players with a bit of a challenge given their progress in the game up to that point.
It has two forms; one looking like a warped home while the other retains the look except with various appendages. It has different attack patterns depending on which form it’s in, but the move you have to watch out for is Suicide Drop, which can deal pretty high damage to your party.
Don’t be fooled, this little guy is way more dangerous than it seems. When facing off against Mu, there’s always the slight chance that it uses its Hot Springs attack and actually heals a member of your party. This rarely happens though. What you really have to watch out for is its Skewer move.
Skewer can do a fairly decent amount of damage which can catch you off guard if you’re not prepared for it. So long as you monitor your party’s health this fight shouldn’t be very difficult.
26 Ark Dragon
With such a splashy design, you’d think that Ark Dragon would be a little bit stronger than it actually is. That’s not to say that it’s a particularly weak enemy either. It just shouldn’t pose too much of a threat to your party.
While it might not be a very tough opponent on its own, Ark Dragon relies on strength in numbers. It never appears on its own and thus, isn’t the sole focus of your attention and can hit you with its powerful Flame Thrower ability pretty easily.
25 Don Corneo's Aps
Found in the sewers of Midgar, Don Cornero’s Aps proves to be a relatively simple boss fight and can be taken care of fairly quickly with the use of Cloud’s Cross-slash Limit Break.
You can actually land a pre-emptive attack on Aps. Attacks to its back do quadruple the damage. An easy way to approach this fight is to use the aforementioned Cross-slash Limit Break to paralyze the creature and have Aeris cast Fire, as Aps is weak to that element.
Well here’s a battle that can get pretty tricky if you’re not careful. When encountering Sample:HO512, the player must also deal with an accompaniment of three smaller enemies. These guys – referred to as Sample:H0512-opt – are nowhere near as strong as H0521, but can prove to be a distraction for players.
The key to this fight is not focusing too much on the grunts – as they can be revived – and instead putting all of your attention towards H0512. Should you choose to do that, the fight will go much quicker and smoother.
Bottomswell can be a dangerous opponent due to his ability to trap characters inside of another boss monster; Waterpolo. Waterpolo drains its victims HP, and must be attacked directly in order to have its hold removed.
Without any Long Range Materia, only two characters – Barret and Yuffie – can actually go up and attack Bottomswell physically. A more sure-fire way of beating this enemy though is through poisoning. It’ll gradually reduce Bottomswell’s HP and allow for additional damage to be done by the party.
22 Gi Nattack
This can actually be a ridiculously easy fight depending on what you have in your inventory. Gi Nattack is flanked by two Soul Fire and much like the Sample:HO512 fight, it’s best to not divert much attention to these two.
You can take Gi Nattack out immediately with a X-Potion or Elixr if you have any on you. This works because Gi Nattack is undead and thus even Holy damage would be great here. That being said, most players won’t have access to those types of attacks at this point in the game, so the items are the safer bet.
Yet another Wutai boss that we’re dealing with here. There’s nothing really all that special about Gorkii’s fight. It’s a pretty straight forward encounter and doesn’t contain any real curveballs or anything else you should watch out for.
Standing at level 30, Gorkii has a fairly decent amount of HP and fairly high Attack and Magic Attack. Pair that with his Barrier, Reflect, and Regen abilities and the fight looks to be a little more time-consuming.
The Shake battle is pretty similar to Gorkii in that there’s nothing all that special to bring up. No real special strategy here, just plan out your attack somewhat and watch out for his Rage Bomber ability.
Speaking of Rage Bomber; the ability will cause Fury every so often. This can be pretty helpful as it will allow Yuffie’s Limit Breaks to charge up faster. The flip side of that, her attacks will miss way more often than normal. So it kind of evens out.
You might not think that Snow would count towards being a “creature” per se, but trust us she’s right at home here on this list. An optional boss, this is actually a pretty straightforward encounter for the most part.
As you might expect, Fire attacks work best against her. Snow mainly uses Ice attacks and will almost definitely confuse one party member by using Fascination. So have either a Remedy handy or keep someone who knows Heal close, and this fight should be over fairly quick.
Here’s yet another Wutai boss, that like most of the others doesn’t prompt a Game Over screen if defeated by. So some of the pressure of this fight is alleviated if only a little.
Chekhov is pretty similar to any other Twin Brain in the game, except he has the ability to drain way more HP than usual and has a ton of HP of his own. You’d be wise to equip a Jem Ring for this fight, as Yuffie is lone wolfing this fight and can be easily paralyzed at any point.
17 Ho Chu
This monstrosity is only encountered in the Battle Square as either the final enemy of the normal battle rounds or the second enemy of the special battle. Ho Chu boasts some pretty high Attack, Magic Attack, and Magic Defense stats but has pretty low Defense.
He has two strong physical attacks in Whip Sting and Big Pollen. The former can actually cause paralysis, so it’s something you should definitely watch out for when taking on Ho Chu. It’s a bit of a tough fight but if you’re properly leveled and have some Remedies on you, you’ll be fine.
16 Materia Keeper
Encountered within the Mt. Nibel region, you battle against Materia Keeper can actually go a few different ways. Sporting over 8,000 HP and some pretty tough Attack, Defense and Magic Defense stats, as well the ability to absorb Fire attacks, this fight can get tricky.
Materia Keeper can string a long a number of different attacks which can deal a pretty heavy amount of damage to your party if you’re ill-prepared. Just be sure not to bring Vincent in on this fight, as his Limit Break Galian Beast will just heal Materia Keeper.
15 Red Dragon
This next creature is way more satisfying to beat compared to what we’ve seen on this list so far. Found inside the Temple of the Ancients, Red Dragon isn’t the hardest boss in the game, but can give you a decent run for your money.
On the bright side, defeating Red Dragon allows you to pick up the Bahamut Materia which can be immediately helpful to you. Keep in mind that it absorbs Fire damage, and be sure to use the Fire Ring to protect yourself.
We move on from one of Don Corneo’s pets; this time a much stronger and challenging one. Rapps can actually turn out to be a fairly challenging opponent, if only due to the fact that the party can’t use any Materia in this fight.
The strategy here is to have Rapps’ powerful attacks quickly charge up your party’s Limit Breaks. After doing this for a while – all while making sure to manage the health of your party – Rapps should go down for good.
The last of the Wutai bosses, Godo is the strongest and trickiest of the gang – with three different forms and a whole bunch of attacks to accompany them. Godo has a ton of HP and will start restoring a good chunk of what he’s lost after a certain point.
Poisoning Godo is a good way to start things off in this battle. That way his Cure2 is somewhat less effective. So long as you can deal around 1,000 damage a turn you should be victorious.
The boss fight against Schizo presents you with a little bit of a challenge due to the fact that you’re taking on two fairly powerful opponents at once. While that may seem to be a little hectic, you should be alright so long as you focus on one head at a time.
Make sure to protect the party from various elemental attacks. The Right head is prone to Fire attacks while the Left one uses Ice. Have some sort of protection set up for both and you’re good to go.
11 Ghost Ship
The main thing to keep in mind when fighting Ghost Ship is that Water elemental moves are only half as effective against it. Other than that, keep an eye out for an attack called Goannai. It will eject a party member from battle and make things needlessly difficult.
The easiest and simplest strategy to consider when fighting Ghost Ship is to morph it. It can be Morphed into the Guide Book item and later be traded I for the Underwater Materia.
10 Demons Gate
Found in the same area as Red Dragon, Demons Gate is unquestionably harder than the former. In fact, it’s probably the strongest enemy you’ll encounter up to that point of the game. You’ll need to do some serious grinding if you find yourself unable to handle the battle.
Demons Gate’s attacks are incredibly strong and most do damage to the entire party. Your main focus should be on slowing Demons Gate down and navigating around its high Magic Defense by employing strong physical attacks and Limit Breaks.
9 Death Dealer
Death Dealer is notable in that it can teach you the Enemy Skill Roulette, which isn’t the most consistent move out there but can swing a battle if you’re willing to take the risk.
Death Dealer deals damage rather uniquely. It attacks in the form of cards – each doing something different. Roulette is definitely a move that you’ll have to watch out for later in the battle, as it can instantly take out any party member.
8 Diamond Weapon
The first Weapon on our list, and while it might not pose a huge threat, Diamond Weapon is still a tricky fight if you’re unprepared. What you have to watch out for are Diamond Weapon’s affinities; mainly how it fluctuates from being immune to physical attacks and magic attacks.
It starts off immune to physical so it would be best to start the fight off with some powerful magic attacks, and then switch over to your Limit Breaks once its immunity changes. Do this, while remembering to heal, and this fight shouldn’t be all that long.
7 Unknown 3
This is hands down the nastiest looking creature on our list, but not all that bad of a fight if you plan it out properly. Unknown 3 will likely inflict Sadness during battle as well as Poison. Getting a Ribbon or a Start Pendant will help you deal with the latter.
It’s actually a viable strategy to let Unknown 3 inflict Sadness on you as it will allow you to take less damage from its devastating arsenal of attacks. Keep these things in mind and this shouldn’t be all too difficult of a fight.
6 Dragon Zombie
There are tons of different ways you can approach this enemy, but it doesn’t change the fact that this is a pretty tough fight. Dragon Zombie has a pretty dynamic range of attacks, with a handful of them causing troublesome status effects.
You’ll need to watch out for three moves in this fight; Poison Fang, Abnormal Breath, and Bone. Shadow Flare and Pandora’s Box are two insta-demise moves that can completely derail this fight if you’re not careful. So long as you’re prepared you should get through this alright.
5 Dark Dragon
Notable for being among some of the stronger enemies found in the North Cave, Dark Dragon isn’t a foe to be taken lightly. Dark Dragon uses strong physical attacks, sometimes twice per turn. It can hit you pretty hard, so as always having a capable healer is really important.
There are positives to this fight though. You can steal Dragon Amulets off of them as well as exploit its vulnerability to Gravity. If you can get it to cast Laser on itself, you’re in for a way simpler fight.
4 Ruby Weapon
We’re now getting to some of the hardest opponents in the game. Ruby Weapon is a very well documented opponent with a plethora of different strategies for defeating it, despite its status as an optional superboss.
With an absolutely ridiculous amount of HP (800,000) this is a fight that will last quite a while, even if you are doing things right the whole way through. Go in unprepared or even slightly under-leveled and this can be a long and fruitless encounter.
3 King Behemoth
When it comes to non-bosses, King Behemoth is one of the toughest enemies you can face in the entire game. With a ton of Attack and Magic Defense, it’s certainly challenging to approach – but definitely not unbeatable.
Not only are its physical attacks strong, but it has some pretty harmful magic attacks as well. With high HP and its Magic Defense stat being what it is, this is a challenging creature to take on. Though using Bad Breath – should you have learned the ability – makes this fight a joke.
2 Ultimate Weapon
While it may be a tough enemy to take on, Ultimate Weapon is certainly worth the effort it takes to defeat it. Beating Ultimate Weapon gives the player access to a bunch of useful stuff, such as weapons, items, and skills.
During your first encounter with it, you can steal a Curse Ring if you’re quick enough. It’s also one of the few enemies you can learn Shadow Flare from – which can be very useful throughout the game. It also drops Cloud’s strongest weapon, Ultima Weapon.
1 Emerald Weapon
One of the most well known enemies in the game, Emerald Weapon lives up to its reputation as an incredibly difficult and challenging superboss. It’s only accessible via the submarine through the bottom of the sea.
With 1,000,000 HP this is a long fight. You can easily slip up along the way and potentially ruin your efforts up to that point. There’s a reason that not everyone goes for this battle, as it is incredibly tough to get through for a lot of players.