Everyone who's played through Final Fantasy VII Remake knows that Cloud Strife isn't who he says he is.
Although he claims that he is a 1st class SOLDIER, this is actually false. Throughout the game, you'll encounter others who will prove this to you. This includes the all-original villain, Roche, also known as Speed Demon, who is a 3rd class SOLDIER that you'll encounter twice in the middle of and near the end of Chapter 4.
With that said, Roche is no slouch. Being a true SOLDIER, he possesses power far beyond that of a regular Shinra guard, which is something that some players, unfortunately, find themselves falling victim to because they're not prepared.
Luckily, we're here to help.
Scroll down below to learn more about how to beat Roche in Final Fantasy VII Remake.
Tips for Beating Roche in Final Fantasy VII Remake
While Roche isn't a particularly difficult boss in the Final Fantasy VII remake, beating him requires proper use of the game's mechanics on the player's part. This is especially true during your second encounter against him, where Cloud will essentially have to fight against Roche on his own without anyone helping him.
If it's any consolation though, once you do figure out how to fight against Roche, it's pretty straightforward.
During your first encounter against Roche, you'll fight him while you are on your bike and he'll have two main modes of attacking: generating waves using his swords or dropping down lightning bolts on your path.
As you close the distance between you and him, you'll have a chance to give him a few good hits. However, be careful. Roche will also hit back and swing his sword at you. Because of this, do also try to take advantage of your ranged special (press L1 + Triangle) to take a huge chunk out of Roche's health even from afar.
While this encounter is admittedly not that difficult, try not to get complacent. It's fairly easy to see your health drop quickly if you don't avoid Roche's attacks.
So, make sure to keep an eye out on those sword waves and lightning bolts and hit Roche whenever you can.
The section ends when Roche runs out of health.
After taking out Roche and his bike during the first encounter, he returns near the end of Chapter 4 to challenge you into a 1v1 duel.
Luckily, Roche seems to have a fair bit of honor in him as he'll bring you back to full HP and MP using an Elixir.
Because this is a 1v1 duel in a smaller area, your best bet to deal the most damage and not be subject to as much punishment yourself is to make use of Cloud's "Punisher Mode". This way, you can just keep on holding the R1 button to Guard and automatically counterattack any physical damage that Roche will try to throw at you.
The best part about doing this is that you will quickly get him to a "Staggered" state just by hit him with counterattacks with your guard up.
With that said, you'll want to keep your Guard up for most of the fight. The only times when you should drop your Guard is when you'll use your ATB charges to land a Focused Thrust on him if he's "Pressured" or use Fire Materia (he is weak against Fire) against him to bring him a step closer to being in a "Staggered" state or when you're dodging his magic attacks.
Once "Staggered", you're free to throw as many attacks as you can against Roche. We recommend using your abilities so you can conserve your MP for when he's back to normal. Use "Triple Slash" to deal a lot of damage or "Limit Break" if you've built it up enough.
Just remember that the lower Roche's health is, the more aggressive he becomes. Although all of his attacks can still be blocked and avoided, he still hits pretty hard if you're not careful.
It should go without saying, but heal up immediately after you get hit.
How to Beat Roche in Hard Mode
Beating Roche in Hard Mode is either the easiest or hardest thing that you'll ever have to do.
It's easy because you can literally skip the entire first encounter against Roche. Also, if you have the Counterstance weapon ability (it's better if you have it on shortcut) from the Twin Stinger and have an Elemental Materia linked with your Fire Materia on your weapon, the fight against Roche shouldn't take too long.
Basically, all you need to do is to select Counterstance the moment that you see Roche start to use his Plunge ability.
If you do this, you'll block the attack completely and hit back with a devastating counter while bringing him close to being in a "Staggered" state. Then, once you do that, you can hit him with a Firaga or two to leave him completely "Staggered" and open to all of your attacks.
Unfortunately, without the Counterstance ability, the fight will be a bit more difficult. Not to mention, he won't heal your HP and MP to full at the start of the fight. This means that you'll have to slog it through by keeping your Guard up and avoiding his attacks, as well as magic spells, whenever possible so you don't end up dying.