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Ross, Amelia Or Ewan?

Favorite Trainee unit  

14 members have voted

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  1. 1. Favorite Trainee

    • Ross
      9
    • Amelia
      4
    • Ewan
      1

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  • Poll closed on 06/13/19 at 11:49 AM

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Amelia because finally we had the first playable "soldier" class (non-armored, non-mounted, lance-only unit)

Ephraim would count but he promotes to have a horse...

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Ross is the only one whose growths make him worthwhile to train up despite his comparatively weak start.

Also is conveniently the first one you recruit.

And you can make him walk on water, effectively making him a messiah.

 

Amelia?  Please, I roll with Duessel for days.

Ewan?  Why use little boi when you can use meme girl Lute the Flute and the sagely Salehmander?

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Ross is probably the only one worth using between these three. He comes in early enough to still be able to get some kills without having to baby him too much.

Amelia... well, there is a major discussion surrounding her, so I won't say much. Only thing I will add: I am not a fan of either Armor Knights nor Cavaliers, which are her only two options on a first playthrough and her base class is garbage due to Armor Knight-like movement.

Ewan... Who needs this brat when you have Lute, who will already be trained up by the time you get him?

Edited by DragonFlames

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Amelia. Ross is a foot axe, aka doomed to being mediocre at best because of crap speed. It doesn't help that you only get one Ocean Seal, which makes Pirate > Berserker unappealing. Ewan is outclassed by Lute, who's likely trained up by the time he's relevant.

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Even though i do like grinding the trainees, the only one really worth using(without exploiting the valni tower like a call center operator) is ross. He comes in early enough that with just a couple of lvl ups he can sort of fend for himself (aka not blowing up the moment you put him one tile on enemy reach). Out of the trainees he has the highest hp and strength growth and a normal lck growth (yay best stat). Even if he has the lowest speed growth out of the three, a couple of good lvl ups and he is good to go, he won't double a lot but he won't really be doubled (except myrmidons). I usually make him a pirate so he can acces berserker (imo the best out the three possible classes for him but hero is debatable) since he has a high strength, good bulk due to his large hp pool and good luck paired with the innate 15% crit he will be relatively bulky crit machine with decent dodge. That being said there are way better units to dump exp on.

Edited by nohrianscum19

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Throwing in another chip for Ross as the best, for reasons already mentioned.

Amelia is the worst and Ewan is in the middle. Amelia might join earlier than Ewan, but the latter uses magic and so doesn't explode 90% of the time on counterattack.

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Ross is the best one, gameplay wise, due to joining very early and thus being able to be trained decently early on, assuming no grinding. He also has exclusive access to the Pirate class line (and thus the Berzerker), giving good reason to train him as well, plus if he goes Pirate he doesn't need to compete with anyone to promote.
Amelia is pretty fun to use (primarily for the novelty of an armor knight/general that doubles) if you manage to train her, but in terms of efficiency she is either somewhat redundant with 4 semi-decent mounted units with better availability or is in the class with the worst movement.
Ewan is rather hard to train without grinding since he joins pretty late, even with 1-2 range. He can potentially be used if you want a second Summoner (which is much better than Druid imo) alongside Knoll, though it would require a lot of investment. 

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21 hours ago, RomanFlour said:

Ross is the best one, gameplay wise, due to joining very early and thus being able to be trained decently early on, assuming no grinding. He also has exclusive access to the Pirate class line (and thus the Berzerker), giving good reason to train him as well, plus if he goes Pirate he doesn't need to compete with anyone to promote.
Amelia is pretty fun to use (primarily for the novelty of an armor knight/general that doubles) if you manage to train her, but in terms of efficiency she is either somewhat redundant with 4 semi-decent mounted units with better availability or is in the class with the worst movement.
Ewan is rather hard to train without grinding since he joins pretty late, even with 1-2 range. He can potentially be used if you want a second Summoner (which is much better than Druid imo) alongside Knoll, though it would require a lot of investment. 

Bold: That's false; Colm needs an Ocean Seal to promote too. Which means if I'm using him, and odds are that's the case because he's the only thief you get for 2/3 of the game, one of them is stuck not promoting until chapter 14.

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35 minutes ago, Shadow Mir said:

Bold: That's false; Colm needs an Ocean Seal to promote too. Which means if I'm using him, and odds are that's the case because he's the only thief you get for 2/3 of the game, one of them is stuck not promoting until chapter 14.

I mean, for what it's worth, they do give you Rennac in case you don't end up promoting Colm. He sucks yeah, but you're not really using him for combat anyway.

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I actually forgot that Thieves use the Ocean Seal to promote in Sacred Stones. Yet again, Colm would not really be seeing that much combat anyway due to his class and Ross would likely get more mileage out of promoting. The game gives you Rennac later on if you want a Rouge, and if you want an Assassin you can promote one of your Myrmidons to the class.

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8 hours ago, Gregster101 said:

I mean, for what it's worth, they do give you Rennac in case you don't end up promoting Colm. He sucks yeah, but you're not really using him for combat anyway.

Outside of Last Hope, it's hard to justify him getting a unit slot, because... well, you said it yourself.

8 hours ago, RomanFlour said:

I actually forgot that Thieves use the Ocean Seal to promote in Sacred Stones. Yet again, Colm would not really be seeing that much combat anyway due to his class and Ross would likely get more mileage out of promoting. The game gives you Rennac later on if you want a Rouge, and if you want an Assassin you can promote one of your Myrmidons to the class.

Still, the fact that I'd have to knowingly screw over the better of the two units that need it makes Pirate > Berserker unappealing (and Ross, being GBA axe infantry, is pretty bad anyway). Especially since Rennac sucks ass and comes late (also, it's not like Colm is FE9 Sothe; he can hold his own in combat). I don't see Assassins as worth it because the boosted crit from Swordmaster is more reliable anyway.

Edited by Shadow Mir

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tbh Colm's combat is better than Ross's given remotely equal treatment, because he'll be so much higher levelled due to his 1.5x multipler to exp and not starting supremely underlevelled. By the time Ross is nearing (his second) promotion, Colm can be well on his way being a killer dodge-tank in a game where dodge-tanking is king.

Anyway I think all three are bad, but Ross is the least bad. I seem to recall Hero is actually his best path which makes all this Ocean Seal debate moot, but it's been a long time since I've actually used him. Amelia and Ewan do have better stats than him long-term (Ross being a project character who will likely fall short of 20 speed is pretty sad) but at least he's usable without massive favouritism.

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Weird that no one mentions that Ewan is the first character you can make into the staggeringly useful Summoner class. Early promoting him to Summoner before getting Knoll is the best use I have ever gotten out of Ewan.

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11 hours ago, Dark Holy Elf said:

Anyway I think all three are bad, but Ross is the least bad. I seem to recall Hero is actually his best path which makes all this Ocean Seal debate moot, but it's been a long time since I've actually used him. Amelia and Ewan do have better stats than him long-term (Ross being a project character who will likely fall short of 20 speed is pretty sad) but at least he's usable without massive favouritism.

Hero!Ross is very similar to Gerik or Garcia in those classes, except with a bit more work to get him there. As Pirate->Berserker, Ross can water- and later peakwalk, which I find is the best reason to use Ross (outside of "I like training underleveled units", of course).

I'm... honestly not too impressed with Colm as a longterm combat unit. Bad Str and locked to sword is not a good place to be in. And if you do want a combat unit with increased XP gain, Assassin!Joshua trades a bit of Spd and Luck for more HP, Str, and Spd.

I don't want to make a statement about Colm vs. Ross in terms of combat, but Ross can use the Ocean Seal gain a unique kind of mobility - Dozla does the same, but his combat stats are quite a bit worse. Colm... I guess his avoid is higher than most other units', but (and correct me if I'm wrong) in my experience, other characters can also dodge reliably against axe users and Colm still faces hitrates above (disp) 30% against sword and lance users.

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2 hours ago, ping said:

Hero!Ross is very similar to Gerik or Garcia in those classes, except with a bit more work to get him there. As Pirate->Berserker, Ross can water- and later peakwalk, which I find is the best reason to use Ross (outside of "I like training underleveled units", of course).

I'm... honestly not too impressed with Colm as a longterm combat unit. Bad Str and locked to sword is not a good place to be in. And if you do want a combat unit with increased XP gain, Assassin!Joshua trades a bit of Spd and Luck for more HP, Str, and Spd.

I don't want to make a statement about Colm vs. Ross in terms of combat, but Ross can use the Ocean Seal gain a unique kind of mobility - Dozla does the same, but his combat stats are quite a bit worse. Colm... I guess his avoid is higher than most other units', but (and correct me if I'm wrong) in my experience, other characters can also dodge reliably against axe users and Colm still faces hitrates above (disp) 30% against sword and lance users.

Water-walking and peak walking are extremely niche, though; the only map where the former is any use is in Eirika's chapter 9, and at no point is peak walking of any practical use (for Ross anyway, unless you rush him to Berserker).

Problem is, Assassin requires Silencer to get the boosted experience, which is not reliable, not to mention that it's just inferior to Swordmaster. Also, I'd say low speed and axes is not a good place to be in either, especially when your con is such that you lose AS from pretty much anything other than iron.

See my first statement for how useful peak and water walking are(n't).

Edited by Shadow Mir

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2 hours ago, ping said:

Hero!Ross is very similar to Gerik or Garcia in those classes, except with a bit more work to get him there. As Pirate->Berserker, Ross can water- and later peakwalk, which I find is the best reason to use Ross (outside of "I like training underleveled units", of course).

I'm... honestly not too impressed with Colm as a longterm combat unit. Bad Str and locked to sword is not a good place to be in. And if you do want a combat unit with increased XP gain, Assassin!Joshua trades a bit of Spd and Luck for more HP, Str, and Spd.

I don't want to make a statement about Colm vs. Ross in terms of combat, but Ross can use the Ocean Seal gain a unique kind of mobility - Dozla does the same, but his combat stats are quite a bit worse. Colm... I guess his avoid is higher than most other units', but (and correct me if I'm wrong) in my experience, other characters can also dodge reliably against axe users and Colm still faces hitrates above (disp) 30% against sword and lance users.

I can't say I've found water- or peak-walking very useful in this game, either; both can be flown over with much greater movement rates. Peak-walking in some games is useful for becoming a better dodge-tank (Binding Blade Chapter 21, for example), but I don't recall many good opportunities for that in this game, and Ross's low speed makes him worse for that anyway, compared to someone like Gonzales.

Compared to Joshua, Colm also has an exp boost pre-promotion. And considering evasion is the most valuable thing about Colm's combat post-promotion, I don't think trading away speed and luck is a good thing for Joshua. Joshua's main advantage on Colm is his significantly better start.

Regarding lances... well, Lancereavers are a big deal here. You can buy them in Chapter 17 so lategame, lances aren't an issue unless they're mixed in with axes. You also have one as early as chapter 10, though Colm certainly faces competition for that one, especially on Eirika route, and it's only 15 uses so definitely a "break glass in case of emergency" weapon.

29 minutes ago, Shadow Mir said:

Problem is, Assassin requires Silencer to get the boosted experience, which is not reliable.

This is not the case. Assassin has an increased rate of exp gain at all times, Silencer just adds a further bonus. Refer to this page and scroll down to the part about experience calculation; notice how Assassin has a lower "class bonus B" which causes them to gain exp at a rate which is between that of unpromoted and (most) promoted classes. (Thief's exp boost is separate and due to their lower "class power" than most unpromoted classes.)

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1 hour ago, Dark Holy Elf said:

This is not the case. Assassin has an increased rate of exp gain at all times, Silencer just adds a further bonus. Refer to this page and scroll down to the part about experience calculation; notice how Assassin has a lower "class bonus B" which causes them to gain exp at a rate which is between that of unpromoted and (most) promoted classes. (Thief's exp boost is separate and due to their lower "class power" than most unpromoted classes.)

Admittedly, I haven't played this or Blazing Blade in forever, but I don't remember Assassins getting more experience than most other classes.

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1 hour ago, Dark Holy Elf said:

I can't say I've found water- or peak-walking very useful in this game, either; both can be flown over with much greater movement rates. Peak-walking in some games is useful for becoming a better dodge-tank (Binding Blade Chapter 21, for example), but I don't recall many good opportunities for that in this game, and Ross's low speed makes him worse for that anyway, compared to someone like Gonzales.

Fair. There's a couple opportunities where he can peakwalk (I remember having him tank the reinforcements at your starting position in Saleh's joining chapter in Eirika's route, but it's very possible that I powerleveled and/or arena-abused Ross in that playthough because that seems pretty early for a promoted Ross) and help with rescue/drops (chapter 7, Selena's map), but I'm not going to pretend that it's a gamechanging ability.

1 hour ago, Dark Holy Elf said:

Compared to Joshua, Colm also has an exp boost pre-promotion. And considering evasion is the most valuable thing about Colm's combat post-promotion, I don't think trading away speed and luck is a good thing for Joshua. Joshua's main advantage on Colm is his significantly better start.

On the flip side, Joshua's stronger start means that he has an easier time collecting more kills and EP experience ;):

I disagree with Colm's stat spread being better than Joshua's. The luck lead isn't even that significant (it's 4.6 at 20/1, for the sake of argument) and apart from that, Joshua is just better in general. +2 Str means 4 Dmg per round of combat, or 8 Dmg for a crit+hit, he's that little bit more tanky (+4-5 HP, although I don't know what kind of survival threshold that lets him reach), he's a fair bit more likely to crit (+9 Skl, so 4-5% more crit).

I should add that I think that SM!Joshua is quite a bit better than Assassin!Joshua despite lacking the increased XP gain, which makes this a bit of an academical discussion. ;):  My main point is that Ross can do something with the Ocean Seal that is unique and interesting, even if it's not gamebreakingly good; while promoted Colm doesn't really do anything that Joshua (or, in terms of thieving utility, Rennac) can do just as well. Whether Joshua's combat is slightly better or slightly worse than Colm's doesn't really impact that all that much.

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2 hours ago, Shadow Mir said:

Admittedly, I haven't played this or Blazing Blade in forever, but I don't remember Assassins getting more experience than most other classes.

I already cited a source. If your memory is different then your memory is faulty.

1 hour ago, ping said:

On the flip side, Joshua's stronger start means that he has an easier time collecting more kills and EP experience ;):

I disagree with Colm's stat spread being better than Joshua's. The luck lead isn't even that significant (it's 4.6 at 20/1, for the sake of argument) and apart from that, Joshua is just better in general. +2 Str means 4 Dmg per round of combat, or 8 Dmg for a crit+hit, he's that little bit more tanky (+4-5 HP, although I don't know what kind of survival threshold that lets him reach), he's a fair bit more likely to crit (+9 Skl, so 4-5% more crit).

I mean, it's still significantly easier to get Colm kills and EP experience than Ross, so you should be careful with that argument. I generally prefer to acknowledge superior performance at each point in the game and then assign everyone equal kills for sake of argument. If you do that, then Colm will have a ~3 level lead on Joshua around the time they promote, so having both at 20/1 is an unfair disadvantage to him. With 3 extra levels, his loss in str is fractional and his advantage in avoid is more appreciable (around 10 points).

Colm also benefits a bit if Neimi is played since that's one of the few easy-to-get supports in FE8 and gives full power (as well as crit, for all that I don't value crit that highly myself). I'm obviously aware that Neimi is not guaranteed to be played due to being a sub-optimal unit but it is a notable support if she is, while Joshua doesn't have anything equivalent (his best supports are both notably slower and give worse bonuses).

I used to think SM Joshua was better too before I learned about the differing exp rates, but now I definitely think otherwise. Given equal kills an assassin will end up around Level 15 when the Swordmaster is Level 9, at which point Assassin's stat leads are pretty insurmountable. Swordmaster does have that nice +1 str out of the gate but it only takes about 2 chapters for that advantage to vanish.

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49 minutes ago, Dark Holy Elf said:

I mean, it's still significantly easier to get Colm kills and EP experience than Ross, so you should be careful with that argument. I generally prefer to acknowledge superior performance at each point in the game and then assign everyone equal kills for sake of argument. If you do that, then Colm will have a ~3 level lead on Joshua around the time they promote, so having both at 20/1 is an unfair disadvantage to him. With 3 extra levels, his loss in str is fractional and his advantage in avoid is more appreciable (around 10 points).

"Equal kills" is not a given, though. If Colm is Lv. 5-6 when Joshua joins (I happen to have a save file of ch.6, and he's Lv.5 there, so that seems fair), base Joshua beats him by 2-3 Str, 2 Spd and 2 Con (which means he has a much easier time doubling with Steel), 3-4 HP, 1 Def, 0-1 Res. Joshua can one-round a fair number of enemies that Colm cannot, or would need a KE crit to kill. Except that Colm starts with E Swords and most likely can't even use it yet (he barely hit D Swords during ch.5 in my save).

I know that enemy kills are finite, but generally, the way I play, if one unit can't take the kill, there's a good chance that another unit (most likely Seth or Franz) will.

Honestly, unless I feel like bringing the shitty early-game archer to the endgame, Neimi is always among the four units that I bench at this point. I'd much rather have Garcia or Gilliam as temporary filler units than have to deal with her weak-ass chip damage. The C support is something you can consider for a couple chapters if you want to use Colm, I guess.

--

We're kinda starting to derail the thread though :lol:. So, since I haven't spelled out my preferences yet:

In terms of usefulness: Ross > Ewan > Amelia
In terms of fun to use: Ewan > Ross > Amelia

--

(imma promote Joshua to Assassin if/when I continue that save, though. Curious to see how exactly he'll measure up)

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Rennac doesn’t suck. It takes a lot of investment for Colm to reach Rennac’s base stats. Rennac does what he’s meant to do as a Thief class better than Colm does, once he joins. He does join late and Colm is very useful before then, but only for thieving purposes, not for combat. Neither are good combat units, but I’d even argue that Rennac is better for combat due to not needing as much investment. I’d much rather sell the Ocean Seal than promote Colm with it. He won’t be good in combat after promoting anyway. Thieves should be staying out of combat more often than not.

That being said, I don’t consider Ross to have much competition for the Ocean Seal, and Water Walking does have some situational uses. He might be better as a Hero to help with his Spd a bit instead though. The main reason I consider him the best trainee though, is that he joins early on. Both Amelia and Ewan join way too late for units that under leveled with such terrible base stats to be remotely worth using. Even Ross can hardly be considered worth it.

As for making Ewan a Summoner. He needs a lot of investment for that to happen. He needs 18 levels to be able to promote into Summoner. Knoll joins immediately ready to promote to Summoner.

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Ross is probably the most useful since he'll usually end up a better Berserker than Dozla. Ewan is nice if you don't want to wait for Knoll to have access to dark magic. Amelia I think is a middle ground given her promotion branches.

However with FE8 especially, I also prefer to look at the stat caps as a deciding factor. There also the matter of the 3rd+ playthrough "Super Trainee" classes, as I like to call them:

Super Journeyman is a poor choice for Ross. It's axe-locked with a crit bonus like Berserker, but other than 2 points of Res, Berserker has superior stat caps in every way.

Super Recruit is lance-locked with a crit bonus, the only such for lances. Makes it somewhat unique for Amelia, and aside from Str her caps ain't too shabby (it's the only lance class with 30 Skill). A nice appetizer for the Soldiers we'd soon get in Tellius.

Super Pupil is very interesting in that it has access to the whole trinity of magic (also making it the only class in FE8 that can use light and dark magic). It also has the highest speed of all magic classes (27), meaning Ewan will make the most out of Excaliber's speed bonus. ...Or you can revel in the hilarity of this young trainee mage boy casting Naglfar. It's certainly no Archsage Athos, but a neat class all the same.

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