The Combat Link system (戦術リンク) is introduced as a function of the ARCUS orbment in Trails of Cold Steel.

Gameplay

The Combat Link allows two characters to directly "link" in battle. When linked, each member has the potential to earn follow-up attacks, special status effect boosts, healing and more. They are activated when a regular attack successfully unbalances the enemy through the correct attack attribute.

All links are gauged by a Link Level (リンクLV), the bonding level between you and your partner and increases through its own experience points called Link EXP (リンク経験). The more link points earned per battle, the more support abilities unlocked.

If a character faints, the link with their partner will be broken and must be re-established manually upon revival. If the entire party is defeated resulting in Game Over, all links will be severed and must be re-established manually if retrying. If the battle begins with an Enemy Advantage, the links become randomly configured. If the player is victorious, however, then the original party configuration and combat links will be restored following the battle.

Link Attacks

Every time an unbalance attack is successful, a cut-in screen appears optioning the choice of link attacks, and earning one Bravery Point (maximum of 5 in CS1/2/3 and 7 in CS4/Hajimari). Each link attack has its own BP cost which becomes greater the stronger the attack is. If they are not used, BP's carry over to the next battle within an area.

Attack BP Cost Effect
Assist
追撃
0 (CS1)
1 (CS2)
A regular follow-up attack
Rush
ラッシュ
3 Both link partners strike multiple times at the target
Burst
バースト
5 Your whole party attacks all enemies

List of Link Abilities

An overview of Link Abilities is listed below. "Y" denotes the presence of the listed Link Ability is said game.

Name Description CS1 CS2 CS3 CS4 Hajimari
Almighty Blow
究極の一撃
Increases finishing blow's power and activation frequency even
more than powerful strike does.
Y Y Y Y
Anger
激昂
Sometimes restores 50 of own CP when partner is attacked.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y Y
Arts Support 2
ブーストアーツⅡ
Sometimes increases the power of partner's offensive arts by 1.5x.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y
Arts Support 2
ブーストアーツII
Sometimes increases the power of partner's offensive arts by 1.5x.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Arts Support 3
ブーストアーツⅢ
Sometimes increases the power of partner's offensive arts by 1.8x.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y
Arts Support 3
ブーストアーツIII
Sometimes increases the power of partner's offensive arts by 1.8x.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Arts Support 4
ブーストアーツⅣ
Sometimes increases the power of partner's offensive arts by 2.0x.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Arts Support 4
ブーストアーツIV
Sometimes increases the power of partner's offensive arts by 2.0x.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Arts Support
ブーストアーツ
Sometimes increases the power of partner's arts by 1.2x. Y Y Y
Sometimes increases the power of partner's offensive arts by 1.2x.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
Auto-Charge 2
クイックチャージⅡ
Sometimes restores 200 of partner's EP after they use arts.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y
Auto-Charge 2
クイックチャージII
Sometimes restores 200 of partner's EP after they use arts.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Charge 3
クイックチャージⅢ
Sometimes restores 400 of partner's EP after they use arts.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
Auto-Charge 3
クイックチャージIII
Sometimes restores 400 of partner's EP after they use arts.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Charge 4
クイックチャージⅣ
Sometimes restores 600 of partner's EP after they use arts.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Charge 4
クイックチャージIV
Sometimes restores 600 of partner's EP after they use arts.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Charge
クイックチャージ
Sometimes restores 100 of partner's EP after they use arts.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
Sometimes restores partner's EP after they use arts. Y Y Y
Auto-Curia 2
クイックキュリアⅡ
Sometimes heals 20% of partner's HP and cures status/stat down when
they are attacked. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y
Auto-Curia 2
クイックキュリアII
Sometimes heals 20% of partner's HP and cures status/stat down when
they are attacked. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Curia 3
クイックキュリアⅢ
Sometimes heals 30% of partner's HP and cures status/stat down when
they are attacked. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Curia 3
クイックキュリアIII
Sometimes heals 30% of partner's HP and cures status/stat down when
they are attacked. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Curia 3
クイックキュリアⅣ
Sometimes heals 40% of partner's HP and cures status/stat down when
they are attacked. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Curia 3
クイックキュリアIV
Sometimes heals 40% of partner's HP and cures status/stat down when
they are attacked. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Curia
クイックキュリア
Sometimes cures a partner's abnormal status or stat down. Y Y Y
Sometimes heals 10% of partner's HP and cures status/stat down when
they are attacked. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
Auto-Tear 2
クイックティアⅡ
Sometimes heals 40% of partner's HP when they are attacked.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y
Auto-Tear 2
クイックティアII
Sometimes heals 40% of partner's HP when they are attacked.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Tear
クイックティア
Sometimes heals 20% of partner's HP when they are attacked.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
Sometimes heals partner's HP when they are attacked. Y Y Y
Auto-Thelas 2
クイックセラスⅡ
Sometimes keeps partner alive with 20% HP when they would be
K.O.ed. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y
Auto-Thelas 2
クイックセラスII
Sometimes keeps partner alive with 20% HP when they would be
K.O.ed. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Auto-Thelas
クイックセラス
Sometimes keeps partner alive with 10% HP when they would be K.O.ed.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y Y
Cheer 2
ライブリーエールⅡ
Sometimes encourages partner when they are attacked. Recovers 15% HP,
restores 30CP. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y
Cheer 2
ライブリーエールII
Sometimes encourages partner when they are attacked. Recovers 15% HP,
restores 30CP. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y
Cheer
ライブリーエール
Sometimes encourages partner when they are attacked. CP+50. Y Y Y
Sometimes encourages partner when they are attacked. Recovers 10% HP,
restores 20CP. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
Counterattack
反撃
Sometimes counterattacks foe when partner is attacked. Y Y Y
Sometimes counterattacks foe when partner is attacked.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
Cover
かばう
Sometimes defends partner from an attack, halving damage. Y Y Y
Sometimes defends partner from an attack. Damage reduced by half.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
Deadly Assist
刹那の追撃
Assist attacks deal 1.25x damage and cause 3 turns of SPD-25%. Y Y
Assist attacks deal critical damage and cause delay+20. Y Y Y
Finishing Blow
止めの一撃
Follows assist attacks with a finishing blow if the foe has low HP. Y Y Y Y Y
Fury
大激昂
Sometimes restores 75 of own CP when partner is attacked.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y Y
Lethal Assist
刹那の猛追撃
Assist attacks deal 1.5x damage and cause 3 turns of SPD-50%. Y Y Y Y
Link Attack
リンクアタック
Allows the use of link attacks. Y Y Y Y
Overdrive 2
オーバーライズⅡ
Deal 1.2x more physical and magic damage during Overdrive. Y
Overdrive
オーバーライズ
Allows the use of Overdrive. Y
Powerful Strike
渾身の一撃
Increases finishing blow's power and activation frequency. Y Y Y Y Y
Protective Wall
堅守
Sometimes defends partner from an attack. Decreases damage by 90%.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
Sometimes protects partner, reducing incoming damage by 90%. Y Y Y
Rush 2
ラッシュⅡ
Increases the power of Rush. Y Y Y Y
Rush 2
ラッシュII
Increases the power of Rush. Y
Sharp Counter
強反撃
Sometimes counterattacks foe at 1.2x damage when partner is
attacked. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y
Super Counter
超反撃
Sometimes counterattacks foe at 1.8x damage when partner is
attacked. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y Y
Vengeance
猛反撃
Sometimes counterattacks foe when partner is attacked. Deals 1.5x
damage. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
Sometimes counters with a critical when partner is attacked. Y Y Y
バーストⅡ
バーストⅡ
バーストで与えるブレイクダメージが6倍⇒10倍(+900%)になる。 Y Y
極反撃
極反撃
Sometimes counterattacks foe at 2.0x damage when partner is
attacked. Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y Y
超激昂
超激昂
Sometimes restores 100 of own CP when partner is attacked.
Activation chance increases as link level does.
Y

Notes/Trivia

  • The Link Levels can be carried over to the 2nd playthrough in the games.
  • Bravery points are essential to battles, especially with Divine Knight battles.
  • Trails of Cold Steel II introduces Link Levels 6 and 7. The Combat Link System is also used in combination with Divine Knight battles and the Overdrive feature.
  • From Trails of Cold Steel II onward, certain opponents with ARCUS are able to establish Combat Links.
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