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CocoaGalaxy

"Is Guard Stance still too strong"

Guard Stance  

56 members have voted

  1. 1. Is Guard Stance just better than Attack Stance

    • Yes
      20
    • No
      27
    • Others (Please Specify)
      3
    • No Comment
      6


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Hello Folks

I'll presume you all know how Guard Stance works and all, so for now, the thing I've been noticing is, even with the changes to the pair up system, it seems that it is still a superior strategy to just "pair up everyone"

The thing I find is that, while the bonuses are reduced, in practice the bonuses are still pretty substantial (though....maybe I need to clear my mind a bit). The passive blocking of attack stance, while it might not seem much, reduces enemy offense by quite a large amount. The Shield Gauge itself makes tanking a lot easier, perhaps even too easy.

One of the things that you may or may not agree is that it also makes the final bosses a lot less threatening

(At least the AI does try at times to make you waste the shield gauge...at times...)

Does anyone else agree with this sentiment?

(Of course it really depends....but it does seem that way, to me at least)

Other Guard Stance related notes is that, enemy guard stances never seem that threatening. (maybe I need to watch more Lunatic Videos, I am trying to find them...)

Edited by CocoaGalaxy

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I voted yes for a few reasons.

1) The bonuses are still great.
2) Speed matters too much to not have it raised in anyway.
3) Nullifying Attack Stance is probably the biggest thing that kills it, if Attack Stance still worked, Guard Stance would be a lot more balanced. I feel as if the game intended it to work Attack Stance < Guard Stance < Normal Stance < Attack Stance, but it needed to be Normal Stance < Guard Stance < Attack Stance < Normal Stance. It ended up Attack Stance = Normal Stance < Guard Stance.
4) The Shield gauge is just an added layer of protection that kicks all the other stances into the grave.

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Perhaps it's just me, but I find that the drawback of having less offense isn't really much of a drawback so to speak, since the enemies end up suiciding on you or something like that

It could just depends on the circumstances since earlygame and maybe midgame it doesn't matter as much..but I don't know

Like, maybe it's just me, but in some cases, it's the "odd case" of "Guard Stance or die"

Edited by CocoaGalaxy

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I think, that, it might be something to do with the mentality of defending, which is a bit ironic (and/or planned by the developers) since the strike skills only work when you attack. If you ask me, the attack stance system isn't really underpowered (if they had full power of the ability to double, it'd really be too much I think)

(There needs to be a map where enemy reinforcements come faster and they either overpower you if you don't kill them fast enough, or they simply spawn faster and faster, so it's a race where you will *need* the offense)

Edited by CocoaGalaxy

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I haven't played Fates, but I've seen some gameplay videos and can agree with this. Overall it boils down to two factors:

1) Fire Emblem is a low numbers game, so any small bonus to any stat (save for Skill) is going to make a big difference. When applied to multiple stats this goes overboard unless the enemy was significantly stronger to begin with.

2) The Shield Gauge seems to fill up by 2/10 every time the main units deals and takes damage. With double attacks this can result in a Dual Guard happening every 2-3 battles, which makes surviving an enemy phase a lot easier.

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I haven't played Fates, but I've seen some gameplay videos and can agree with this. Overall it boils down to two factors:

1) Fire Emblem is a low numbers game, so any small bonus to any stat (save for Skill) is going to make a big difference. When applied to multiple stats this goes overboard unless the enemy was significantly stronger to begin with.

2) The Shield Gauge seems to fill up by 2/10 every time the main units deals and takes damage. With double attacks this can result in a Dual Guard happening every 2-3 battles, which makes surviving an enemy phase a lot easier.

Thing is that misses still count for the shield gauge

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My impression is that Guard Stance is probably going to be a dominant strategy, although at least this time around they made some efforts so that there are places where you'd want an attack stance (Guard Stances don't allow for Dual Strikes, after all, and sometimes that Dual Strike damage would finish off an enemy).

Actually, couldn't you use Archers and the like to exploit things a bit more, like this:

Enemy

Guard Stance Pair-up

Archer

The Guard Stance pair creates a defensive screen for the enemy phase. If the enemy survives, the archer can Attack stance, with the aid of the lead unit of the Guard Stance (if I understand correctly), kill the enemy, then let the Guard stance advance the screen.

The next turn, the Archer can walk up behind the Guard Stance screen and use Attack stance with its lead again. Indeed, maybe that's how the position cited in my example was created in the first place.

EDIT/ADDENDUM: By the way… if Guard Stance is indeed to be consider the stronger strategy for a majority (if not all) of situation, should perhaps we also consider this in optimizing for the 2nd gen…. after all, they get their Guard Stance personal pair-up boost from their parent's boosts (C and A boosts from father, B and S boosts from mother), so that then determines which extra stat points they're adding to their partner in Guard Stance…. 5 stat points are involved in these S-rank boosts… 2 of them are fixed as the father's C and A rank boosts, but the other 3 are malleable from the mother's boosts.

For example, by the time of S-rank, Matoi will always grant at least 2 DEF (from Tsubaki's C and A rank each adding +1 DEF, for +2 DEF total), but the other three stat points will come from her mother…. for instance, Hinoka will add on +1 LCK, +1 SPD, and +1 RES, while Luna will add on +1 DEF, 1 SPD, and +1 STR.

Obviously, modifiers, classes, and skills are going to be more important, but when determining which couples would work most efficiently together, the effective stats that the lead unit of the couple would have to work with would be: lead units stats + pair-up stat's from partner's class + personal pair-up stats intrinsic to the partner. Of course, its only 5 stat points controlled by this latter factor, but at some points that just might make the difference in breaking a threshold.

Edited by astrophys

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I was planning on making a poll for that as well......though in hindsight maybe I should have.

In my opinion, Attack and Guard Stance is a skill like uhm..it's fairly, if not very powerful outright, but not as "hilariously must use" as Copycat Puppet for that matter.

Attack and Guard Stance "still loses" to regular Guard Stance though...because you give up a skill slot for nothing.

Actual ingame usage, I have zero idea

Even assuming a "level playing field", then it would be a tradeoff between "some offense" and "some defense"

Main (in my opinion) applications of attack stance is to pile attacks onto a single (sometimes, or more often than not) stationary target, or to smack targets with effective weapons, or to get more usage out of weapons like braves

Edited by CocoaGalaxy

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I'm not sure... It probably would be more useful than Attack Stance, but on the other hand, I'm not convinced pairing up everyone is the way to go.

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I'd still advocate a mix. some units to be in Guard while others in Attack. not all your units (usually) will be within enemy range (if you don't let them). plus you could potentially attack/kill more units because you have more attackers. lastly, it gives flexibility because you can always pair people up when you need them to

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On top of that Guard Stance is really easy to set up for your combat units. The bonuses are just the class bonuses + personal bonuses. The character's stats don't affect the bonuses at all like they did in Awakening. So you can very easily make support units just by promoting and getting an S with your combat unit.

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I think it'll only be REALLY strong when the "Attack and Guard Stance" item gets used.

Attack and Guard Stance leaves you vulnerable to enemy Dual strikes. I'm not sure if that is really desireable...

Something to never touch on harder difficulties. It's only beneficial with avoiding and Speed draining skills.

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It doesn't help much in player phase overall I think its weaker then attack stance overall from what I've seen.

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Guard Stance is definitely the stronger stance, i find (negating an enemy's attack around every 2-3 rounds of combat is useful, along with negating the support unit's extra attack in attack stance is very useful).

though Attack Stance has it's uses. Particularly in scenarios where nobody can tank all of the enemies currently fighting you and they all need to die before enemy phase if you want your units to be safe.

Edited by Peppy

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I think they're both equally great. Personally for my lunatic IK run, guard stance is usually only useful to me in certain situations (like on chapter 15 // The rainbow sage in which I just send two units who are paired up so that all the enemy units in that specific area attack them);

I personally like attack stance better, because I don't grind often until end game, and all of my units have a pretty high crit rate;

plus since I don't grind, I like for each to get their share of exp during that specific chapter // map.

And as mentioned above, attack stance is nice for leveling those weaker units.

alsfkjs SO many of my units for lunatic got rng screwed. so many.

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I thought I had to use Guard Stance a lot in Nohr 10. But finally I found that Attack Stance could be more defensive than Guard Stance by killing enemies before they could do anything.

I don't need too many units to tank at the same time. Sometimes even tanks don't need any pair-up because they are solid.

1~2 Guard Stances are enough.

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Your tankiest tank doesn't need anything but Strength and Skill in his pair ups anyway. You could use Xander or a defensive build Kamui, sure, maybe even Great Knight Cyrus, but it's only really needed when you're in a pickle.

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I was planning on making a poll for that as well......though in hindsight maybe I should have.

In my opinion, Attack and Guard Stance is a skill like uhm..it's fairly, if not very powerful outright, but not as "hilariously must use" as Copycat Puppet for that matter.

Attack and Guard Stance "still loses" to regular Guard Stance though...because you give up a skill slot for nothing.

Actual ingame usage, I have zero idea

Even assuming a "level playing field", then it would be a tradeoff between "some offense" and "some defense"

Main (in my opinion) applications of attack stance is to pile attacks onto a single (sometimes, or more often than not) stationary target, or to smack targets with effective weapons, or to get more usage out of weapons like braves

Attack and Guard Stance charges shield fast than regular Guard Stance. It is not "nothing".

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