In Final Fantasy XIII and its sequel, every second time you switch paradigms, all your characters have their ATB bars instantly filled. This functionality is not mentioned in the manual for the game or in the in-game datalogs related to the combat system.

Is it a bug, or is the combat system supposed to work that way?

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    I always just assumed that it filled naturally during the animation, and the animation was longer than the time it took to fill. – Macha Aug 30 '10 at 22:33
  • Perhaps the first paradigm switch, which has a long animation, but after that, switching paradigms takes almost no time at all, and when you have 5 ATB bars, you can see it fill the moment the switch is made. – au revoir Aug 31 '10 at 2:33
  • @JasonBerkan I looked at FF13-2's battle primers and it's not mentioned there, either. I'm inclined to agree with what you said in chat that this might be too "Why did they design it this way?", although it's a shame we don't have any question here devoted to the ATB Refresh mechanic. Maybe this could be reworded to be "Why would I use ATB Refresh?" or something similar: shouldn't invalidate the answers. – user3389 May 6 '12 at 13:46

Filling the ATB bar is the expected action during Paradigm Switch - it's the ATB bar reset that's deliberately added. This is to keep you from liberally switching between paradigms too often. Constant switching without a penalty would essentially allow you to access all characters' moves at all times.

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  • It may, however, be more likely to retain your ATB gauge when switching back to a paradigm that you just came from, to allow an unpenalized sort of "undo" action. – Keaanu Aug 31 '10 at 2:55
  • However, neither expecting the ATB bar to be filled, nor the ATB bar reset are referred to in the documentation, and I'm not seeing a reset occur (assuming by reset, you mean the ATB bar resets to empty). On one switch, the ATB bar continues to grow from the point where you switched. On the next switch, the ATB bar jumps to full. – au revoir Aug 31 '10 at 6:10
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    It's not a feature that's going to be explicitly documented. Think in terms of any platform adventure you've played where your character is allowed to dodge-roll forward. If the roll speed is faster than your run speed, then there will likely be a short pause in your character's movement upon standing again. This prevents you from gaining a speed advantage by repeatedly rolling instead of running. The feature is implemented so that you can't gain an unfair advantage through constant state manipulation. – Keaanu Aug 31 '10 at 14:07

maybe the developers WANT you to be constantly switching and REWARD you for doing such... I've noticed this whenever it only shows ONE character switch, and BOTH immediately assume their roles. I'm not complaining, as most of the time when I double switch it's to double/triple medics.

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