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Raguna

SoV Unit Evaluation Day 24-25: ATLAS and Jesse

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Hello and welcome all to the Unit Evaluation Thread. The game having arrived a little more than a week ago, I thought it would be appropriate to gauge the usefulness of all the units presented to us thus far. Due to how early I'm making this thread, it should be treated more as a rough draft on what a unit is capable of rather than a completely strict tiering system.  It's worth also only to see where the community stands on these guys.

This evaluation will strictly be on their contributions in gameplay and not on personality. A discussion on their worth as characters should probably be made into a separate thread for the sake simplicity. I won't add a poll system for ranking unless requested since I'm not entirely sure of their efficacy.  The characters will be presented in pairs for a duration of two days until the next batch is selected. Excluding these first two units, everyone will be done in order of recruitment which means that after Alm and Celica, the next group will be Lukas and Gray and so forth until the end of chapter 1 where we switch to Mae and Boey. Lastly, spoilers are allowed to avoid vagueness in what maps they hold a specific advantage.

Furthermore, the units in question will be more closely evaluated against their more immediate competition. For example, Lukas' direct competition would be Forsyth and while Valbar can be mentioned, the units only ever join in post-game at a point where Thabes is the only thing left so it doesn't add much to the discussion. For mercenaries in particular, looping will be counted as a boon of theirs but it will not heavily influence their usefulness. Evaluate the units based on the people in their respective routes.

Without further ado...

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Our hero from Ram Village sporting high base stats, one of the highest growth rates in the game, a large pool of support bonuses from his pals and the ability to wield the mighty Royal Sword and Falchion. Needless to say Alm is an investment well worth putting levels in especially for when he goes solo to gain the Falchion. One of the best units in his side of the story, his contributions get better as you move along with his promotion making him gain access to bows even if they might not see much use. Lastly he is able to swiftly change his weapon due to having access to the convoy in battle means he can eat or switch weapons on the fly for whatever situation. 

 fire_emblem_echoes__shadows_of_valentia_

 

Our heroine from Novis, a princess in search for the Earth Mother while fighting against pirates and the Duma Faithful. Like Alm, she sports decently high base stats, some of the highest growths in the game, a good number of supports and access to the convoy.  That said, she contributes slightly less than Alm mostly due to how good most of the characters in Celica's group are and the fact that due to her primary weapon being a sword, she cannot counter from two spaces away like Boey or mage Mae. She is however a blessing due to learning Seraphim early to deal with the necro dragons, being able to heal if Genny has used her turn and the fact that she can gain her personal weapon the Beloved Zofia first by upgrading the golden dagger with your first gold mark. 

Now discuss, agree, disagree and lay out your opinions for me SF. 

Edit 1: Added some clarification.

Edit 2: Only minimal grinding is factored in the evaluation of these units, and looping will not be heavily counted in their evaluation when applicable. 

Edited by Raguna

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Gonna do a quick and dirty analysis

Alm: Royal Sword has the insane Double Lion skill and you dont need marks to get it unlike other good weapons like the killer bow. His growths are insane and he has good bases too. With warp support he can cleanly orko a lot of units.

 

Celica: Early seraphim is amazing and she has arguably better growths than Alm. Her personal wep isn't amazing as it eats up a gold mark, doesn't have an insane active like double lion, nor will she be in one range much due to her magic being a better option most of the time.

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Because Alm and Celica are both required units for all battles/ dungeons in their respective chapters and sections, they have plenty of time to gain stats and gain exp for any weapon/ equipment they are using. In my gameplay each one filled a role, Alm acted more as a high defense attacker, while Celica felt more like a cannon.

Alm: 

Spoiler

Stats: With Alm, I could safely put him on the front line against physical units, and know that he could take the damage and deal it back. His defense is not the highest(compared to characters like Lukas), but it is higher than most of my cavaliers and mercenaries. His main flaw is his resistance stat, if he is up against mages, then he is in trouble. 

Equipment: During Act 1 and part of Act 3, Alm does not have a set weapon to use. I gave him the lightning sword, and he did great with it. Two-ranged attack for high damage. Then in Act 3, Alm gains his personal weapon, the Regal Sword. This gives him some good Arts to use.

  • Subdue - good for training up weaker units, or weakening a mage down to 1 HP, preventing them from casting magic. This ability came really handy during the last battle of Act 3 at the Sluice Gate. I wanted to recruit Delthea, but she teleports and could easily kill some of my low res units, so I used Subdue on her, and she was passive for the rest of the map.
  • Double Lion - Easily one of the best skills in the game, giving Alm two consecutive attacks, +5 Might, +20 Hit, and +10 Avoid all for 6 HP.  This skill allows Alm to easily kill enemies without them retaliating. If Alm is slower than the enemy, Alm can use this skill to always do two attacks hopefully kill and avoid two attacks back. If Alm is faster than the enemy, then the added hit and Mt is helpful. Unfortunately, you cannot do a 4x attack with it. I've used Double Lion to kill many arcanists and Cantors to avoid their massive magic attack.
  • ScendScale - Alm's Special move. It has a really nice animation, does a lot of damage, extra range, but it is only one attack. Even if your speed is higher. There is no extra Hit bonuses, so if you are having a hard time hitting your enemy, this skill does not help.

Then in the end of Act 5, Alm gains the Falchion. This sword is needed to kill the final boss (Exception: Nosferatu), but that is the only time I've used it. Well having recovery and Anti-terrors is nice, Alm has high enough Def and Atk to tank hits from the Terrors and deal high damage back. And I've always had healers nearby. It also has ScendScale, but Ive stated my opinion on that. In my opinion, The Regal Sword is a much better weapon for Alm.

 

Promotion: Alm gains his promotion late into the game, halfway through Act 4, or later depending on how you progress with Alm and Celica. I used Alm a lot because he was a good unit, and so I easily got him to lvl 20 before I could promote him. Even without his promote stat gains, he still was one of my best units. Once he does promote, he gains access to Bows. I've used the base bow to give him a 2-range attack which is really nice. I haven't given him an actual bow, because there are much better archer characters in the game, and he does not have Bowrange +2. 

 

Overall: I'd give him a rating of 9/10. Alm is a top-tier unit. With one of the best personal weapons and skills, he has been used a lot in my army. He has proven his worth over an over again, but he does lack against Mages.

Celica:

Spoiler

Stats: Celica to me was more of a cannon-type unit. She had high Atk and Spd which allowed her to quickly kill enemies. She had ok defense and res, so she could take a hit, but not many. In her route, there are definitely units that gain higher Def and Res stats, so they were better suited for the front line. 

Magic: Celica gains a lot of really good offensive magic. Fire was good for low-hp magic to kill. Thunder great for attacking past 2-range units. Seraphim really helped against Necrodragons and other terrors (which are aplenty in her route). Excalibur has a good hit and crit rate. Ragnarok did not get much use, with a high HP cost, and high Wt, it was easier to use her other spells. Recover was great to have, but I had Celica focus more on attacking, then healing.
Equipment: Celica has a personal weapon, the Beloved Zofia. Evolved from a golden dagger with a golden mark. With Recover, Swap, Subdue and her special move Ragnarok (Omega). I gave her her sword as soon as I could, but by end-game she was barely using it. She performed much better when by using her magic, so the Beloved Zofia was mainly used for Recovery. And because I slowly stopped using it, I did not unlock Ragnarok (Omega) until Post-game. I want to try getting her a Mage Ring, because it gives Recovery while allowing her to do more work her her magic from a longer range. 

Promotion: Celica gains her promotion at the end of her Act 3. This was when I was promoting my other units up, so this came at a good time. Sadly, she does not gain any new weapon classes or skills from promoting.

Overall: I'd give her a 8/10. She does great offensively, but lacks a little defensively. Best used for her magic abilities. 

 

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Alm

Spoiler

+Forced, both for deployment and in completing the game

+Excellent growth spread, including high Atk and Def

+Two highly potent Prfs

+Varied support options, as well as hidden bonuses (e.g. Crit +20 when adjacent to Celica) to improve combat

-Mediocre combat early on

-Low Mov

-Tendency to get Spd-screwed

I much prefer Alm of the two, as he becomes much more reliable at combat with some investment into his Spd for late game via Springs and Pegasus Cheese; his growths will do the rest from there. While he starts out a bit weak early on, his combat takes a turn for the better once he obtains his Royal Sword, whose Double Lion art turns him an excellent bosskiller, providing him with an ample source of experience long before he promotes at the end of his route. Also, unlike Celica, training him is required to complete the game, since only he can land the finishing blow on Duma.

Celica

Spoiler

+Forced

+Recover and Seraphim utility

+Targets Res

+Excellent growths in Atk and Spd

-Frail

-Mediocre Prf

-Low Mov

Celica certainly has a stronger start on her route compared to Alm, providing the earliest available utility against terrors, as well as healing for her allies once she hits Lv. 9. Ragnarok and her Prf weapon, the Beloved Zofia, are slightly one-offs, however, given the expense  the former takes on her sketch bulk later in the game and the expense the latter incurs on your resources. Her offense remains solid with high growths in both Atk and Spd, at least.

 

What do the two have in common? Both are forced in their respective routes and suffer from low Mov in a lategame riddled with 7 Mov Dread Fighters, 8 Mov Bow and Falcon Knights, and 9 Mov Gold Knights, making it harder for them to catch up to the rest of their team. While Alm does get two sources of Warp in Silque and Tatiana to offset this issue, Celica lacks this luxury in her route.

Both have perfect availability as starting lords and will likely contribute a great deal to the party they lead, but I prefer Alm overall.

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Alm has good starting offense compared to most of his team, lulls a little bit in the midgame once they promote and he's just swinging and Iron Sword, then gets pretty crazy offense once he gets the Double Lion arte. 5 Mov is a bit a problem compared to the rest of his team, but he's a good Warp/Rescue target. His durability is pretty much always good, but he needs to be careful around magic users.

Celica has good base offense, early Seraphim is important for taking out the necrodragons at the Sea Shrine, also your only second healer for a while. She has some issues in Act 3 with all the desert terrain and being locked to 4 Mov. Act 4 is a bit better, even with all the swamps she does have the Magic Ring to see more combat and gets Excalibur. Her defense isn't terribly high, so you probably don't want her in range of too many enemies. 

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Alm in general is the king of melee between him and Celica (thought that's to be expected) he can "tank" hits and dish them out regardless of what you give him. Celica not as much she seems more potent with her magic, however she runs into several Terror battles and if she has the blessed sword she will absolutely destroy them. Meaning she doesn't have to use HP to do effective damage. Both are great units, I'm thinking of doing an Alm solo but I'm not sure how I would do the same for Celica we'll see.

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Alm's about as good as 5 move infantry can possibly be and comes with a trio of warp/rescue users that get him into killdude range one of whom gets insane support adds from rescuing Alm. Shoutouts to swapping between weapons on the fly for that dirty levin/royal action.

Ceilica uuuuh kills a necrodragon and then falls on her neck as the worst Preistess in the game in the middle of a not-mage-respecting desert and swamp. Would not use outside of forced deployment.

Edited by joshcja

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Alm is perfect, you cannot go wrong with him.

As soon as he arrives he dishes a lot of damage, so he chips enemies for Kliff and Faye. Alm's incredible bulk and strength make him an important unit in the early chapters with a lot of cavaliers, as he is the only one who can take hits from them and not die in the process, as well as damage them. His bulk is also good for stalling Super Saiyan mercenary in until Tobin kills him. Since Alm promotes late you can afford not to train him much* and still keep up because his stats are just that good, in a sense he is the Jagen of his group. I don't think speed is an issue because his growth isn't bad and he is so bulky getting doubled won't do much against many enemies. There is also resistance but no one in this game has good resistance anyways. Alm is also Leif tier in support bonuses, he supports and is supported by almost all the group, and those certainly help. Since Gray has dibs on the Thunder Sword and Alm is too slow for it he puts the Iron Sword from the Thief Shrine to good use until he gets the Royal Sword. After a couple swings with Royal Sword Alm gets Double Lion, and that thing is very good for deleting enemies and it patches Alm's inability to double some enemies if he got screwed, although for reaching its full potential Royal Sword has to be forged and it can only be done so with gold pieces. In the endgame he gets the Falchion and that thing is ridiculous. Kills monsters/bulky dudes like a champ and allows to beat Duma. Even though the gameplay focus shifts to cavaliers and warp shenanigans in midgame Alm still remains relevant because his stats make him a good candidate for warp/rescue skipping, and he definitively comes in handy for deleting enemies in the dungeons. His movement does become a problem in some maps where it is better to use Mathilda but he can still be rescued.

 

Since Celica is a mage in SoV she is more of a team player but she has her merits.

Her bases are good and her growths definitively keep her up for the game in offensive power. She likes 2 strength and 1 speed from the fountains at Novis Monastery to be able to kill dracozombies, bonewalkers, and gargoyles at the Sea Shrine, as well as ORKO generic dudes with Fire and Thunder, so she doesn't have to rely on costly spells to kill, not that costly spells are good anyways, in OG Gaiden Ragnarok worked because the enemies had horrid stats so you will likely go unpunished, but in this game enemies have too much HP. Celica is frail, both pysically and magically. She can't take a lot of hits and against ranged enemies she is also disadvantaged if she can't OHKO them because magic is suicidal in this game. Since she is vital to get past the monsters she will likely learn Recover before she mets Alm, and that makes Celica into the second healer in the group, allowing Genny to do more shenanigans. In terms of equipment Celica gets screwed. Golden Dagger eats gold to be forged to its full potential and you rather use that gold on blessed weapons, and other swords are better distributed between the mercenaries. The magic ring arrives late so her best bet is use the Holy Ring or the Angel Ring for passive healing, although the other magic girls would want something like that too. Her best weapon is the Lady Sword but that arrives at the end of her route in the most bs dungeon. It helps but who cares? Lastly her performance drops significantly unlike Alm. Her mobility is horrid. 4 move and there is no warp. This becomes blatant when the gameplan shifts to movement and thats were Dread Fighters and Falco Knights best do. Celica is still great for dungeons due to bonewalker spam but that 4 move really bites her. I don't know if it counts for this reviews but do boots from the free DLC solve her viability? I am going to try it out.

Edited by L9999

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Boots don't do much for Ceilica sadly, she's still grounded infantry move in bad terrain land with paper bulk and no movement tech outside of swap/shove.

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Moving on to our next set of characters we find ourselves with our friendly pals Lukas and Gray. Now let's get this started now shall we.

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Our first recruit hailing from a low-ranking noble house in the Zofian borderlands. The first playable soldier, he comes in to help Alm primarily in the early game to train up the rest of your units with Alm. He carries decent growth rates with an emphasis on HP, Skill and Def but he will always keep his abysmal spd. That said, his promotion gains are what truly carry him to become a veritable wall that will negate most damage without care and deal enough damage back for other units to pick off if he doesn't kill them. His greatest weakness are magic and his lack of 5 movement outside of giving him Boots but the latter isn't a grand issue since by the time you need more Mov, Silque will have probably learned Warp by then. 

Compared to Forsyth, he has a definite lead in defense, hp, skill and join time since by the time you gain Forsyth, Lukas might be just about ready to promote to his next class and Forsyth's base stats aren't all that different from the ones Lukas had when you first got him. By contrast, Forsyth has an edge in Str, Spd, Luck and Res so he could be seen as a more viable option to take on the more magic oriented chapters. Due to available unit slots only being an issue in dungeons, it'd be a good idea to bring one of these dudes along or alternate to give each some experience.

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A friend from infancy, Gray is the strongest of Alm's friends with the highest base stats among them (excluding Kliff's ludicrously high luck) and the ability to instantly promote when he gets to the Mila Shrine. Outside of his strength and Hp, Gray is pretty fragile with the lowest res and defense of the group by the end but his essentialness really boils down to the class you make him into. 

Unlike the rest of the villagers, Gray's general spread doesn't allow for much versatility. His spell list is arguably the worst of all the mages, he'd just be invalidated as a knight by his competition and redundant by the number of cavaliers present in Alm's route. While archer would make good use of his high strength, it's a flip if he'll be doubling enemies as you keep progressing. His best class is actually mercenary since the class ups his skill and speed, gives him security against mages and a lot of movement while exploiting his high strength for a good amount of damage. In summary, he's great as a merc and meh in pretty much everything else.

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Lukas

Fantasticaly great in the earlygame, falls off as the game advances. Just like Alm, Lukas start with great defense and great strength, and he also has the speed to double a lot of enemies when you start the game. The fact that he can take a hit makes him valuable, and being able to dish damage out is great. Even though you should be funneling exp to the villagers and Silque, Lukas can get his share of exp and promote to Knight before Zofia Castle, and he comes in handy in that fight as he is the only one who doesn't get demolished by Slayde besides Alm. He also comes in handy in later chapters that have cavalier spam, defense from map spawns, and as a wall in dungeons. But he has 4 things that make him fall off. His speed is super bad, and that makes him eat more damage, even with his bulk. Of course, movement, cursed as every knight. Another thing that bites Lukas is his inability to kill later in the game, he just doesn't do KO damage, making him a poor option for warp. The obvious, witches destroy him, and lategame has arcanist spam. The reason Lukas is salvageable later is because dungeons have a lot of unfair enemies Lukas can bait and tank and with few units to use he is always decent filler. He gets a 7/10.

Gray

He is the reason a lot of the earlygame is winnable. Gray has the speed to double with the Thunder Sword, allowing him to ORKO the otherwise bulky cavaliers in early game. Due to all the combat Gray will have, he will promote to Myrmidon way before Zofia Castle, opening the door for getting rid of the fliersbane archers in Zofia Castle on turn 1. Then is deleting dude after dude. Once the Thunder Sword outlived its usefulness, you can forge him a Darkness Sword to obtain the Brave Sword, which makes use of his great strength, skill, and speed. As a Dread Fighter, Gray's weakness to magic is patched and he just continues demolishing things until the endgame. The one thing holding Gray back is that he is not very durable and that he relies on promotion bonuses to get good stats because his growths are not stellar. 9/10.

 

 

Edited by L9999

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Grey is a solid 9/10 for the same reasons Alm is. Strong all game perfect availibility good weapon in levin/zweibby.

Lucas is a thwoms thwomp. He can be viable if forked but otherwise he falls off by bandit shrine 4/10.

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Lukas is a solid Baron, but he loses a bit of his utility in the late game, when mages who WILL double him are peppered throughout the enemy armies, making Forsyth more practical in the long run. He's still a valuable tank in the early game, and due to the lack of magic wielding terrors, he'll maintain his viability in dungeons if you choose your battles wisely. 6/10.

Gray is a poor unit in any class that isn't Mercenary. He can probably make Archer and Cav work, but he's far from living up to his potential in those positions. That said, as a Merc, he basically has no glaring flaws. His high early base stats give him a lot of time to shine in the early game, and the Merc line will make up for all of his immediate flaws. On top of this, his high strength growth gives him a lot of room to grow as a Merc, as other Mercs in the game(Which are all in Celica's route) will all struggle to do much beyond chip damage. He's still a bit squishy, and magic will wreck him until he promotes to Dreadfighter, so he needs an eye kept on him until then. All around, a great unit as a Merc. 9/10.

Edited by Slumber

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In terms of Baron viability: Lukas > Forsyth > Valbar. Lukas had no trouble taking hits since his defense was the second-highest on my endgame team (second only to that of Alm's, but I overleveled him by a fair bit). His speed became somewhat of an issue in the late-game, and his resistance needs a massive amount of work (though I mitigated this somewhat with the Hexlock Shield). His strength is high enough that he seldom needs to carry a named weapon and his bulk is best utilized to tank volleys from distant bow knights as well as frontal assaults on chokepoints. Compared to Forsyth, Lukas had better defense, skill, and strength, and his speed became less of a problem when fighting monsters since revenants and bonewalkers are often slow as molasses anyway. Forsyth had more balanced stats overall, but I feel this actually detracted him from his usefulness as a tank, whereas Valbar had lower stats than both Lukas and Forsyth to begin with. Judging from my experience with Lukas, I would give him a 6/10 without an item to combat his low resistance and a 7.5/10 with one. He has a niche against physical units, and his weakness to magic is correctable. 

Gray is excellent, but as stated above, he's only sensational in the mercenary class line. His high skill and speed was a boon to his utility as front-line fighter and his poor resistance was vastly improved when he promoted to dread fighter. However (and I don't know if this is just me or not), his strength turned out rather low, which seems contrary to his high strength growth. He'd often have to rely on critting to secure kills against most late-game enemies, and I feel that Kamui made a better dread fighter overall when looking in terms of raw stats. However, Gray's supports with Tobin and Kliff provided him with better staying power and utility than Kamui. Overall, I'd give Gray an 8/10 as a mercenary and no more than 5/10 as anything else. He really only thrives as a dread fighter.

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I like both of these characters quite a bit but I feel that Grey has an edge at least when it comes to movement. Due to the fact that one Grey promotes to Mercenary/Myrmidon/Dread Fighter his movement increases while Lukas' movement stays at 4. Also Grey can endlessly level up if you want meaning he will get some very high stats. Between the two Grey is funnier but I love how intellectual Lukas sounds. Both are solid units and definatly worth your time but in the long run Merc Grey will be a superior unit to Lukas.

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25 minutes ago, SavageVolug said:

I like both of these characters quite a bit but I feel that Grey has an edge at least when it comes to movement. Due to the fact that one Grey promotes to Mercenary/Myrmidon/Dread Fighter his movement increases while Lukas' movement stays at 4. Also Grey can endlessly level up if you want meaning he will get some very high stats. Between the two Grey is funnier but I love how intellectual Lukas sounds. Both are solid units and definatly worth your time but in the long run Merc Grey will be a superior unit to Lukas.

@Raguna Does this thread considers the bolded? I believe* that this unit evaluations assume we are playing reasonably fast with no grinding, right?

Edited by L9999

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7 minutes ago, L9999 said:

@Raguna Does this thread considers the bolded? I believe* that this unit evaluations assume we are playing reasonably fast with no grinding, right?

I'd assume not. Otherwise, every male villager and merc would be a 10/10 due to potentially capping all of their stats with enough grinding.

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33 minutes ago, L9999 said:

@Raguna Does this thread considers the bolded? I believe* that this unit evaluations assume we are playing reasonably fast with no grinding, right?

 

25 minutes ago, Slumber said:

I'd assume not. Otherwise, every male villager and merc would be a 10/10 due to potentially capping all of their stats with enough grinding.

It does not consider looping for the exact reason Slumber stated. Any merc can reach 10/10 because of it. I'll edit the rules again to specify this since only minimal grinding should be factored due to entering dungeons every so often. 

 

 

Edited by Raguna

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Just now, Raguna said:

 

It does not consider looping for the exact reason Slumber stated. Any merc can reach 10/10 because of it. I'll edit the rules again to specify this, since this should factor minimal grinding since you'll be entering dungeons every so often. 

Alright. Otherwise we have nonsense like Jesse 10/10 or something. 

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Their time to shine over, our boys Lukas and Gray will gracefully bow out for the light to shine on cautious Tobin and the ever snarky Kliff.

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Another friend of Alm hailing from Ram village, Tobin is our cautious pal who wants to provide for his family and suffer unjustly as the game makes him the end of many jokes. Like his buddy, he enjoys most of the benefits such as early availability, numerous classes and passive supports, but unlike them his only spectacular growth lies in skill. Unless he pursues the mercenary line, he will be relying on his base speed for a while. 

To continue while Mercenary does increase his speed from promotion gains alone, his strength is only decent so he'd more than likely stay close to the class' base. You really don't need an armor outside of Lukas and again cav isn't what you're looking for with him. Mage is excellent for him in the early game due to gaining Excalibur early but in all honesty he'd just be a weaker Luthier with less spells. By the end Archer sounds like the best option for him and gets even better when he gains a Killer Bow which combines his high skill to crit enemies to death even if he can't double them with an added Horse bonus by the last promotion. His high skill also gives him a slight edge over Python who has a low base stat in spd and will generally be the most inaccurate of all the three archers. 

All in all, he does better than Gray in versatility but only marginally. He's probably the weakest villager overall but still one of your better units due to sheer potential alone and early game advantage.

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The last of the male villager trio, Kliff here just joined in for the exploration of it all. Nevertheless, we can all agree that him tagging along would be a boon for many people's playthrough. His low base stats outside from his ridiculous luck and 8 res get solved just by promoting, he has a nice pool of supports and Tobin's especially increases his hit rate that help out if he becomes a mage which seems to be his best option due to the grand number of spells he learns.  His incredible growth rates in spd, defense and skill will carry him through the harshest battles.

Due to the way his stats are distributed, Kliff can function in any kind of class and do amazingly in it. His only inhibitor is his attack being average all things considered. As stated before, his greatest class is that of the mage on Alm's team. Luthier and Delthea will take a while to arrive and due to the low res of enemies in this path, Kliff will always pose as a veritable threat. Now if he joins Celica's group, an archer could probably fit better due to the overabundance  but a mage again would be an excellent choice.

Overall the best of the villagers, he and Faye share the highest versatility especially when they can join Celica's group. Kliff is a unit you can't pass up and one you'll rarely regret.

Edited by Raguna

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Alright, time for controversy.

Tobin

He is very good. As soon as he arrives he is the only villager who can deal significant damage to the thieves besides Gray, perfect for helping scrubs like Kliff and Faye to get levels. When the moment to promote, his best class is mage. "But Archer!" Archers are not a big deal in Alm's path beause there are no cantors or awful terrain to warrant the need for one. What is so good about Mage!Tobin? Everything. His bases are great, particularly his Speed, which is 6. With Fire he has 3 AS, which isn't bad, but if you invest 1 speed boost from the fountain, he has 4, and that allows him to double a lot of enemies with Fire, and when he gets Excalibur at level 6 (which is very early) he doubles basically everything. If he doesn't double he can deal heavy damage as the enemies have almost no resistance or he can pull off a critical hit, thanks to his good skill stat and passive supports (correct me if I am wrong). But, because Tobin will be a mage, Tobin is with his problems. Number 1 is that enemy phase is awful, as magic is suicidal and he autoequips a brick called Fire, so by all means and purposes he is a traditional archer in enemy phase (bad). Another is that mage/sage have horrid movement, and this extremely notable in midgame, however, Tobin still proves his worth because he learns Physic, and that is a great blessing, as it allows him to always be useful, unlike scrubs like Kliff or Luthier. The endgame has some nasty armor dudes that Tobin can help to eliminate if you already used your three healers to attack, and Tobin gets access to the Magic Ring, which makes Excalibur very safe to use. Now, the pitfalls with mage!Tobin: "His growths are not good" So what? Earlygame precense and being a Physic stafffbot with OK stats is better than being a monster in stats that doens't contribute inmeadiately. "His spell list is worse than Kliff's" A complete lie. Learning Excalibur three levels ealier is much better than waiting until level 9 and proceed to learn spells that more often than not kill yourself because they drain too much HP. Tobin gets Physic. That alone is much better than anything the other mages have to offer, unless you value Delthea's Seraphim a lot. Tobin gets an 9/10. He is the dude. 

Kliff

Kliff is not as good as he was in Gaiden. Kliff's awful bases show through as others have now passable/good growths with better bases and HM enemies having better stats than Gaiden. That being said, cavalier Kliff. As soon as he promotes, cavalier will instantly fix Kliff's horrid stats, and having a pony is always helpful in FE, particularly Gaiden with its huge opens maps. "But you get Clive" Yes, but here is the thing: On average, Kliff isn't too far away from Clive's bases, and he atually surpasses Clive, for many reasons: 1) Kliff has 8 base resistance. Clive gets shred to pieces by mages because he has only 1 res, whereas Kliff can take 2 or 3 hits from them. To get more resistance he has to get to Gold Knight, and during that timeframe Kliff can come in handy for fighting mages safely. 2) Kliff's growths are much better than Clive's. Clive has an awful Speed growth of 25% with not so great bases, and Kliff has 60%. That will make Kliff more likely to proc Speed to counteract the weight of lances, and not rely on the Gold Knight promotion like Clive. More speed means not getting doubled as well. Kliff's Skill and Def are 10% higher than Clive, and those help. Speaking of the devil, Kliff on average will have stats not too far away from Mathilda and he likely is ready to promote to Gold Knight, whereas Mathilda has to start from level 1. Mathilda is the better character, but if you think it you have 2 Mathildas running around until Zeke, the 3rd Mathilda joins. Sure it becomes Pony Emblem, but it is better to have Pony Emblem than having to drag around a useless scrub. So yeah, Kliff takes some time to get good, but it pays off and you don't have to invest fountain boosts on him, just a spare lance and he is good to go. Or go archer and have fun. I'll give Kliff 8/10, he is the OG.

*If you say anything about mage Kliff I will send you a pizza roll in the mail. 1) His base speed is garbage, 60% speed growth doesn't mean anything. Eirika has the same strength growth as Franz but she starts with 4, so she is comes out way weaker on average. Same deal with Kliff, he is a slug. 2) He does absolutely nothing in the midgame, as cavalier he actually contributes to something. 3) I already explained why Tobin is better.

PD: Recruiting Kliff and Faye with Celica is a COLOSSAL waste of your time. They do nothing worthwhile in Celica route because their stats are super bad for that timeframe and Celica's group has enough members as it is.

Edited by L9999

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I found both Cliff and Tobin to be useful and were solid units that I used on every map. In my run I made Cliff a cavalier because well I wanted an early game cavalier. And while he lacked strength at first, he had a very good resistance/defense ratio. Making him a good candidate for baiting out any mage or going up against them. Tobin I made an archer a decision I did not regret, once he became a bowknight he was great at sniping off mages and or witches and when I acquired the blessed bow he was even more deadly against these enemies. Also he seemed to crit a lot. I would say that I think Cliff is better due to he seemed better at taking hits than Tobin did also his speed seemed better as well. However both are good units and worth your time, I don't see why one would not recruit Cliff or would ignore using Tobin.

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I share the same sentiments about Tobin and Kliff as L9 does. So, it'll sound pretty samey, and I apologize for that in advance. Anyhow, let's proceed~

 

Tobin

Think Tobin in the longterm as a less flexible Kliff. However, he's good when he needs to be good and by the time he does fall off in usefulness, he's providing +15 hit to DF!Gray and GK!Kliff - 2 of the most capable combat units Alm can come to have.
Tobin's best options are Mage>Cav=Archer>Merc>Soldier in that order. Mage is obvious and you should see the points L9 makes but I shall point out that with 2 speed uses from the thief shrine wellspring, he manages to double most of the enemies in chapter 1 barring the cavaliers, of which he soon doubles with Excalibur once he gets that.
Archer!Tobin would be cool but Python, even if he turns out to be really shitty for you is all you need since having more Archers is not needed in Alm's Route - it'd be helpful in Celica's Route but Tobin can't join Celica's Route. I'd say Cav!Tobin can get 2 speed wellspring uses, and basically double the entirety of chapter 1 (barring Slayde), and into the ea0rly parts of chapter 3. He does fall off as soon as Mathilda starts existing (since Claire is a much better Ridersbane user than Cav!Tobin due to her having Speed), but again +15 hit on A support to Gray and Kliff are not things to be trifled with.
Merc literally gets rid of his selling point and Gray + Kliff make much better mercs. Soldier!Tobin is Soldier!Kliff lite. 4 mov with the ability to double and hit kinda hard because the soldier line has good base str and def. Kliff does all that with much more speed due to his growth quickly outpacing Tobin due to the -10 spd growth the Soldier line gives which makes Tobin's speed growth a pathetic 15%, and Kliff's an acceptable 50%. Soldier's still pretty bad though because 4 mov and no physic to make up for that.

Also, another thing about those wellspring uses. That one extra speed use can go to Alm or Cav!Kliff :^)

Kliff

The jack of all trades, and a master of one class. Kliff is the most flexible of the villagers in this game for his great 60% Base Speed Growth, and considering that having 1 point of speed here literally determines if you're able to double an enemy or not, this speed is very welcomed indeed as Hard Mode enemies have much more AS as a whole than thier OG and NM counterparts.
Kliff's best options are Cav>Archer>Merc>Mage=Soldier. Cav!Kliff is the best user of the Ridersbane before Mathilda comes along, due to having enough speed to double most, if not all the cavs he comes across before Mathilda comes along, having much more defense than Claire, and by the time Mathilda comes, Kliff is nearing Gold Knight promo (usually promotes at Sylvan Shrine, along with DF!Gray) and the fact that Gold Knight has 18 base pow basically renders all of Kliff's potential pow issues going into Chapter 4 null. Sure, due to her better bases, Mathilda will reach the magical 24 base pow, 26 base spd to ORKO Rudolf with a maxed out Ridersbane much easier than Kliff but, having another Mathilda who's already a Gold Knight and hitting hard with just a +2 Steel Lance is not something for be trifled with. Archer is mainly due to that hit support he has with Tobin and the bond support (I'm calling it a bond support smh) he has with Alm means he'll get a +20 hit support bonus by around chapter 3, which cancels out the poor accuracy issues that Archer is plagued with (obviously without the use of Weapon Skills and the like.) He's got better things to do though.
Merc because you gotta go fast and you can actually run DF!Gray and DF!Kliff at the same time rather well if you wanted to. I personally wouldn't recommend it too much because Lightning Sword EXP is valuable and getting 1 Myrm is better than running 2 mercs in my eyes. 
Mage was already explained by L9, and Soldier!Kliff is everything Soldier!Tobin could dream of in the longterm.

Tobin Support is stronk and recruiting Faye and Kliff with Celica is a waste of your time.

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Alm is definitely more in need of archers than Celica. She has more units with resistance, and plenty of pegasi/dread fighters. The majority of magic users she faces are arcanists who have equal def/res, whereas Alm faces more witches that have low def/high res, and are a lot more dangerous with their warping.

Kliff definitely wants to go archer, his high res makes him a perfect fit and his speed growth helps the poor speed class base. He's alright early as a mage, but falls off hard later on, and cavalier is relatively mediocre in this game IMO

Trobin can do any class decently except soldier and mercenary. You'd generally want a mage and archer between them to round out your army, but with two clerics and two lategame Physic users a mage isn't as necessary as in Gaiden, so he's probably the better option for cavalier

Edited by David Boey

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Tobin: Archer/Mage good guy, never your best unit but it's hard to argue with an early join that contributes early and manages to not fall off.

Kliff: Same as Tobin but slightly worse early and much much much better late.

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