A spell of the Arcana, Alterna consigns entire hordes of enemies to the void at the cost of all MP.
Alterna is a Ring Magic obtained during Chapter 13 at Zegnautus Keep. Alterna is the last spell Noctis learns on the Ring of the Lucii. It casts a spell that temporarily breaks open the fabric of reality, creating a crystalline gate into another dimension that ejects enemies from the battle entirely, at the cost of a full MP bar, albeit not putting Noctis into Stasis. There is no EXP penalty for defeating enemies this way.
When the ring is in the weapon slot, the player can cast Alterna if there is enough room in the field for the animation to play (it will not activate in narrow spaces), with the warp button held down when locking onto an enemy. A crystal sphere appears around the target(s), which collapses upon itself, sucking the enemies into a black hole that disappears. Noctis has super armor while casting, and will not fall in mid-air. Very few enemies are immune to Alterna (such as Timed Quests, Omega, and Garuda), but the chance of it working is random and Noctis's Magic stat doesn't affect it. It works against Gladiolus, Ignis and Prompto when they are fought against at training session at camp. Enemies that used to be immune to Alterna pre-1.06 tend to resist it and it may take numerous tries for it to work.
Patch 1.06 boosted Alterna, removing enemies' immunities to it, so now it has a chance to work against even the adamantoise. If Ifrit is defeated by Alterna, it triggers the normal death animation where Shiva is summoned, with similar reactions occurring with other bosses. Patch 1.08 was released with a patch note saying that it fixes a bug that arises when using Alterna on Ifrit.
Alterna's animation is reminiscent of the appearances of the Void from other series's entries as a crystal sphere that collapses to form a black hole that sucks enemies in, removing them altogether. While seemingly inspired by the appearances of the Void from the series, whether the spell actually transports one to the same Void is unknown.
Alterna is a Level 8 Black Magic spell, only usable while equipped with the Ring of the Lucii. It inflicts one hit of massive non-elemental magic damage to all enemies (5.1x) and ignores 25% of the target's SPR stat at the cost of 80 MP (originally 99 MP).
Alterna is a Latin verb, a first-person singular present active imperative of alternō. From the word alternus, meaning "one after the other" or "alternate".
In the Spanish version the spell is called "Versus".