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T-Doggo

Golden Deer Maddening Advice for a Noob

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Hi all,

Looking for some advice and feedback on my planned team for Golden Deer Maddening. I have not yet played the GD path but I'm gunning for that gold start screen. I do not plan to use any DLC or take advantage of any benefits from online play. I'll lay out my planned team that I'm looking for feedback on and then I have a few general questions at the end. Thanks for the help!

 Team

Ranged Units

Claude - Barbarossa; I'll make sure to get him death blow. Not much to say, he seems like a great unit in a great class.

Lysithea - Gremory; training reason/faith makes sense to me to get warp, but I also see people recommend Dark Knight for canto. She's the best mage, so she'll be on the team with Thysrus regardless.

Leonie - Bow Knight; her skills are set up for it and she gets the coveted Point-Blank Volley. Seems like a no brainer. Ideally she'll have Death Blow, Darting Blow and Hit +20 but Death Blow will be the priority.

Cyril - Bow Knight; I feel like I'm missing something here because I rarely see anyone recommend Cyril, but on paper he's a second Leonie. His growths are similar to (slightly better than) hers, his strengths align with Bow Knight, and he also gets Point-Blank Volley. Just no Darting Blow.

Fliers

Catherine - Falcon Knight; Given her high strength/speed, she seems perfect to become a dodgetank. From what I can tell, using her also greatly helps make the midgame easier on maddening due to her awesome bases. Will try to get her Death Blow, but not sure how useful it will be given she plays primarily on enemy phase.

Ingrid - Falcon Knight; Since she's so fast, I plan to make her another dodgetank. However, I'm slightly torn on using her. I've seen some claim she makes an untouchable enemy-phase god and is one of the games' best units. I've seen others claim that her poor STR growth prevents her from dealing significant damage to enemies on maddening, making her a poor choice. Looking for guidance here. Again, while Death Blow sounds nice, I'm unsure how useful it will be if she mostly fights on enemy phase. Trying to get it also affects with when I try to recruit her, which I am unsure of.

Petra - Wyvern Lord; whereas Ingrid/Catherine dodgetank with lances, Petra will do so with Axes, helping her better avoid lances via Lancebreaker which Ingrid/Catherine won't have. Death Blow is along her natural class progression, and I'll try to get her Darting Blow as well.

Player Phase Damage Output

Sylvain - Paladin; I realize Wyvern Lord is usually his recommended class, but given that I already have four flyers listed above, I'm not sure I'll have the extra flying battalions to accommodate more fliers. His primary goal is to spam Swift Strikes, which I believe is slightly stronger as a Paladin due to Lancefaire anyway. Death Blow is obligatory.

Ferdinand - Paladin; pretty much identical to Sylvain

Felix - War Master - His speed and strength make War Master seem like a good fit. I had originally planned to make him a Bow Knight but I already have three bow users to aggro/chip enemies. I figured another unit who can clean up the enemies my dodgetanks draw in would benefit my team more.

Byleth - War Master - I originally planned to use female Byleth as a Falcon Knight because it's a great class (and free Sylvain recruit), but decided my three other fliers were probably enough. Like Felix, using Byleth to clean up/demolish the enemies that approach my party seems to help the team more overall than what I had originally planned for him/her.

Others

Marianne - Dancer; Riding strength makes getting +1 Mov easier.

Linhardt - Bishop; All he needs to do is spam Physic to keep the rest of my team alive. Warp is also very useful.

 

Questions

Is my planned team (13 units) too many? Given the reduced experience on maddening, will 13 units be too many to effectively train? If too many, who would be the most droppable? Cutting Catherine/Cyril and replacing them with Byleth/Felix respectively could work but I'm not sure.

Using only four students from the Golden Deer, will Chapter 13 be doable? I realize I'm not using many students from my original house, so most of my party will be very underleveled for Chapter 13. Claude, Byleth, Lysithea, Leonie, and dancer Marianne will be my only units at an adequate level. Is it a realistic goal to complete the map with only this group on maddening without anyone dying?

In general, when should I look to recruit my students? I know recruiting late especially benefits some students like Ingrid/Petra stat-wise, but at the cost of lower/wasted skill growth and no class mastery skills. In the context of Ingrid/Petra for example, they'll be far, far away from Alert Stance+ which is essential to make them dodgetank effectively, and I will need to backtrack to get them Death Blow. No one will have authority experience either.

I realize that recruiting all my students just before the timeskip and leveling my in-house units up to that point could help me with respect to my previous question. However, unless I'll be screwed for chapter 13 otherwise, this doesn't seem worth it, as my recruits will be severely hampered as a result. I currently aim to recruit all my students on chapter 6, or as close to it as possible.

 

Thanks for reading this wall of text, and I appreciate the feedback! This is my first post here so if I've broken any rules, please let me know!

Edited by T-Doggo

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You seem to know what you're doing. A general thing I noticed, here, though, is lack of magical offense - Linhardt and Marianne will primarily be support, so it's basically just Lysithea, right? Magic can be really nice for taking down high-defense enemies, or conversely, fast units in evasion-boosting terrain. Sylvain has the natural boons for Dark Knight, as does Lorenz, if you chose to use him. Or you could use Hanneman/Manuela as a midgame pickup (both of whom have siege spells, something you're missing).

Up to you, though. Full disclosure, I haven't beaten GD Maddening; I'm currently playing through BL Maddening with NG+ and DLC.

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You will definitely not be training everyone evenly, but thirteen is quite manageable, especially when you unlock adjutants.

Chapter 13 is not a particularly hard one. I often just have Byleth and whichever Lord I have and they have no trouble. With Claude it shouldn't be too much effort. Fly to a good wooded area, dismount, and equip a Longbow. 

It's hard for me to say when you should recruit. My philosophy is to work on them at a normal pace, but aim to have everyone recruit by Chapter 8. That just kinda what I do.

Just some other things to keep in mind:

Ignatz should not be overlooked. He can get early access to Rally Speed, very welcomed for the beginning of any Maddening run, but also Break Shot and Seal Attack, which really do wonders for softening up foes. I typically also have him grab Poison Strike.

Get Warp with Lysithea asap and then use her to Warp Byleth to one turn Lorenz Paralogue so you can use Thyrsus. This will make your mages much more viable, something they struggle with without the DLC classes.

Make Petra your dodge tank while giving her Dancer. Honestly, while Dancers are good, that 20 Sword Avoid is too good to pass up. Have her studying Flying only to reach A+ right away! Because of that, I'd recruit her first. You'll want to give her a crit build so that she can get kills, so Swordmaster as her final class works best. Felix does this much better, but Petra takes a fraction of the time to get going.

Don't use Ingrid. Not only does she not get kills, on the chance she does get hit, she isnt going to survive. She can make a good bait for casters, but it's a character slot I'd rather fill with several others.

Be prepared for many enemy gambits. Those dodge tanks typically aren't host to super high Charm, so it's something you need to really be aware of.

Get Lysithea to dip into Armored Knight for the defense boost. In fact if you're filling dangerous, I made an Enemy Phase Lysithea that was brutal on my NG VW run. The important skills are Vantage, Defiant Crit, Wrath, and Dark Magic Crit, and then your Reason level. She'll still need to be aware of gambits, but getting her in HP range isn't hard, especially with archers everywhere. If you can make it, Fortress Knight will give her an even bigger defensive boost.

This next piece of advice is very divisive, but I always gun for Lysithea to get Dark Spikes by Chapter 4, which isn't that tight, but you do need to focus on it from the get go. This allows for not only the easiest kills on Death Knight, but also allows her to OHKO units with Fiendish Blow.

Otherwise, you've got a solid plan of attack, my friend. Maddening seems a lot scarier at first, and it isn't balanced, but it's still far better than, say, Lunatic+ Awakening or a blind playthrough of Thracia. No, you'll be fine, I'm sure.

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5 minutes ago, Shanty Pete's 1st Mate said:

Up to you, though. Full disclosure, I haven't beaten GD Maddening; I'm currently playing through BL Maddening with NG+ and DLC.

Chalice of Beginning makes the gimmick of a billion meteor mages on the final map a joke. War Monk is a great transition for Dedue to pick up ranks in Faith so he can grab Renewal. Try to make Constance a Valkyrie first, that way her Bolting is actually reliable.

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Ch 13 may be pretty awkward. Since the first batch of reinforcements is Ignatz and Lorenz on the close side, and Leonie and Hilda on the far side. Then again, Golden Deer is certainly the easiest version of that map because Claude is just a great class with a great gambit, and Grappler!Byleth holding the Aegis Shield with a high prt batallion is usually indestructible. Together these two can handle the map on their own if they absolutely had to. The biggest issue with having benched units in that map is the enemy AI walking towards them instead of Byleth/Claude.

Is 13 units too many? Well, you'll be benching at least one of these guys for almost every map, I expect. But that's fine since adjutants gain 50% exp and 100% skill ranks except authority.

As for the units you picked, Cyril is a rough start just due to stat deficiencies. If you're committed to using him and still committed to benching Hilda, make Hilda his Guard adjutant for the special linked attack bonus. That'll boost his point blank volleys an additional 6 damage once they reach A support. Catherine I'm not a fan of using longterm. Yeah she'll tear up the early mid game, but you're already past nearly half of the toughest chapters of the game, and it's a lot of investment getting her to falcon knight. I don't care much for Ferdinand and Sylvain, but since they're the recruited versions, you can be sure their stats won't turn out garbage. If there's one kid from Golden Deer that I'd make a case for, it's ignatz. His personal skill is great, his linked attack support with Raphael is great, and Sniper is fantastic ranged delete button. Hilda is also fantastic, but if you choose to use her long term, that's going to hurt Cyril's viability big time.

Overall, not the team I would pick, but it's a plan more than good enough.

Edited by Glennstavos

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1 hour ago, T-Doggo said:

I realize that recruiting all my students just before the timeskip and leveling my in-house units up to that point could help me with respect to my previous question. However, unless I'll be screwed for chapter 13 otherwise, this doesn't seem worth it, as my recruits will be severely hampered as a result.

I doubt that's a good plan, given that like stated, waiting does wind up doing more harm than good.

1 hour ago, T-Doggo said:

Using only four students from the Golden Deer, will Chapter 13 be doable? I realize I'm not using many students from my original house, so most of my party will be very underleveled for Chapter 13. Claude, Byleth, Lysithea, Leonie, and dancer Marianne will be my only units at an adequate level. Is it a realistic goal to complete the map with only this group on maddening without anyone dying?

The issue I have here is that half of the units you're using from your original house (specifically, Marianne and Lysithea, who along with Raphael, come in from the northeast corner) spawn in after you've made some headway into the map - ergo, after the hard part is over.

1 hour ago, T-Doggo said:

Is my planned team (13 units) too many? Given the reduced experience on maddening, will 13 units be too many to effectively train? If too many, who would be the most droppable? Cutting Catherine/Cyril and replacing them with Byleth/Felix respectively could work but I'm not sure.

You get room for 12 units in the last map, adjutants aside. 

Other stuff:

-Look out for gambits - as stated, most of the good dodgetank units don't have high charm (which dictates gambit hit rates); if a gambit hits, the unit(s) on the receiving end get rattled, which freezes them in place and disables the effects of their battalion, in addition to losing stats.

-Use bows often - early on especially, it'll take multiple units to kill one enemy. Bows allow you to attack enemies free of worry about counterattacks (other than archers and mages, and the latter, you can get around with Curved Shot). In particular, chapter 2 thieves have 14 AS (which is guaranteed to double your units), and needless to say, you won't have anyone who can take doubles from them without issue.

-Speaking of which, enemy units will come with an extra skill depending on class; thieves will have Pass, so you'll want to be careful with your formations. Archers have Poison Strike, which, unlike in Fates, requires hitting first.

-Do NOT go in the range of the archers in the center of the map in chapter 5. They'll aggro everything else once they start moving. On that note, Gilbert will end up doing so if he's not defeated by the reinforcements that come at you from behind.

Edited by Shadow Mir

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Thanks for the feedback everyone, lots of good advice here! I'll definitely consider Ignatz long term after the recommendations, and I'll obviously be taking advantage of him early game. I'm also relieved to know that I may be able to feasibly struggle my way through chapter 13 lol

 

3 hours ago, Glennstavos said:

Hilda is also fantastic, but if you choose to use her long term, that's going to hurt Cyril's viability big time

I'm definitely not against using Hilda! I seriously considered her but I didn't feel like she would hit as hard as Felix/Sylvain/Ferdinand and she won't dodge like Petra/Ingrid/Catherine. Her low dex combined with being an axe user also made me concerned she'll be inaccurate. What are some of Hilda's strengths over other characters?

 

I also have one vote against using Ingrid:

3 hours ago, Xylaugheon Daily said:

Don't use Ingrid. Not only does she not get kills, on the chance she does get hit, she isnt going to survive. She can make a good bait for casters, but it's a character slot I'd rather fill with several others.

and one against Catherine:

3 hours ago, Glennstavos said:

Catherine I'm not a fan of using longterm. Yeah she'll tear up the early mid game, but you're already past nearly half of the toughest chapters of the game, and it's a lot of investment getting her to falcon knight.

I'll likely want at least one of them as a Falcon Knight, but is there a strong reason to use one over the other? I hadn't considered taking my dodgetanks' charm into account to avoid enemy gambits, but based on that I'm leaning Ingrid for her much higher CHA growth. 

 

I appreciate the input y'all, this is very helpful!

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14 minutes ago, T-Doggo said:

I'll likely want at least one of them as a Falcon Knight, but is there a strong reason to use one over the other?

Catherine has higher ranks and comes with the Thunderbrand (though that should honestly go to other units.)

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55 minutes ago, T-Doggo said:

I'm definitely not against using Hilda! I seriously considered her but I didn't feel like she would hit as hard as Felix/Sylvain/Ferdinand and she won't dodge like Petra/Ingrid/Catherine. Her low dex combined with being an axe user also made me concerned she'll be inaccurate. What are some of Hilda's strengths over other characters?

Besides just consistently high stats and great personal skill, Hilda's got very high charm. Though this advantage is offset by her authority bane and the lack of good gambits on flier battalions. Since you have her at level 1, you have the entire game to boost her authority naturally. She's also got unique access to Apocalyptic flame on her relic, which is +15 MT, and +20 hit on a weapon with a massive 23Mt stat. 38 attack power before you factor in her stats, class, or abilities. And gold relics like Freikrugel are easier to repair than silver ones since Umbral steel is about 8 times more common than Mythril. Fliers can't kill things as freely as your gauntlet users or Point Blank/Hunter''s Volley users, so these unique relic arts I find to be very good throughout the game for doing big damage when you need it

Quote

I also have one vote against using Ingrid:

and one against Catherine:

I'll likely want at least one of them as a Falcon Knight, but is there a strong reason to use one over the other? 

38 minutes ago, Xylaugheon Daily said:

Catherine has higher ranks and comes with the Thunderbrand (though that should honestly go to other units.)

Ingrid would have a head start in skill ranks that matter for a flier, in addition to having proficiencies in those ranks so that they grow faster. Ingrid also has Frozen Lance, which hits hard and is very accurate due to ignoring terrain. She also has early access to her own relic

Edited by Glennstavos

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2 hours ago, T-Doggo said:

I'm definitely not against using Hilda! I seriously considered her but I didn't feel like she would hit as hard as Felix/Sylvain/Ferdinand and she won't dodge like Petra/Ingrid/Catherine. Her low dex combined with being an axe user also made me concerned she'll be inaccurate. What are some of Hilda's strengths over other characters?

On paper she looks like the same old axe unit, but in practice she is one of the best units in the game. Sylvain and Ferdinand in my experience don't actually hit too hard on Maddening, mainly since they have issues doubling. Felix is normally fine, keep using him. Dodging is something you shouldn't rely too much on anyways in Maddening, at least for the the early-mid game. By the late-game, everyone is fine and has settled into their niches, so you won't need to worry. Hilda as another flier over Ingrid and Catherine for sure. Just follow your plan for Petra with Hilda too. Wyvern Lord is debatably the best class in the game, so the more of them you have, the better. Also, don't worry about inaccuracy, Axes have fairly solid hit in 3H. Hilda for sure over Ingrid. On top of this, Alert Stance basically makes her a late-game dodgetank anyways.

2 hours ago, T-Doggo said:

I'll likely want at least one of them as a Falcon Knight, but is there a strong reason to use one over the other? I hadn't considered taking my dodgetanks' charm into account to avoid enemy gambits, but based on that I'm leaning Ingrid for her much higher CHA growth. 

Not particularily one reason to pick Ingrid over Catherine or vice versa, although Catherine has a way easier time getting kills compared to Ingrid. 

And for the rest of what your planned team is

7 hours ago, T-Doggo said:

Byleth - War Master - I originally planned to use female Byleth as a Falcon Knight because it's a great class (and free Sylvain recruit), but decided my three other fliers were probably enough. Like Felix, using Byleth to clean up/demolish the enemies that approach my party seems to help the team more overall than what I had originally planned for him/her.

Go female Byleth, and then Wyvern or Falcon Knight. Another early game recruit cannot be undervalued, and fliers are super strong. While Quick Ripose is a very strong skill, it'll come at such a point that it's usage will be niche enough to only need one user.

7 hours ago, T-Doggo said:

Lysithea - Gremory; training reason/faith makes sense to me to get warp, but I also see people recommend Dark Knight for canto. She's the best mage, so she'll be on the team with Thysrus regardless.

Just give her levels enough horse/lance levels to make Holy/Dark Knight anyways for the option. Lysithea will easily master any class you set her too, so just letting her have options is nice.

7 hours ago, T-Doggo said:

Leonie - Bow Knight; her skills are set up for it and she gets the coveted Point-Blank Volley. Seems like a no brainer. Ideally she'll have Death Blow, Darting Blow and Hit +20 but Death Blow will be the priority.

Cyril - Bow Knight; I feel like I'm missing something here because I rarely see anyone recommend Cyril, but on paper he's a second Leonie. His growths are similar to (slightly better than) hers, his strengths align with Bow Knight, and he also gets Point-Blank Volley. Just no Darting Blow.

Really just personal experience speaking here, but Leonie and Cyril have never turned out good for me. They just struggle to actually deal competent damage to any enemies. 

7 hours ago, T-Doggo said:

Marianne - Dancer; Riding strength makes getting +1 Mov easier.

Linhardt - Bishop; All he needs to do is spam Physic to keep the rest of my team alive. Warp is also very useful.

I think you should make Linhardt the dancer. Lysithea already has warp, and while she will be mainly on magic damage duty, she'll have time for a warp or two. Marianne also still has physic, and with riding strength you might as well just focus on making her a holy knight.

7 hours ago, T-Doggo said:

Using only four students from the Golden Deer, will Chapter 13 be doable? I realize I'm not using many students from my original house, so most of my party will be very underleveled for Chapter 13. Claude, Byleth, Lysithea, Leonie, and dancer Marianne will be my only units at an adequate level. Is it a realistic goal to complete the map with only this group on maddening without anyone dying?

As long as you don't completely ignore your other units, you'll be fine. Just make them adjucants and they'll be a decent enough level to at least do something. As others have said, Ignatz is someone you might just keep around anyway for his rally skill, so he might just naturally get exp from being out. 

7 hours ago, T-Doggo said:

In general, when should I look to recruit my students?

IMO, do it asap. The sooner you get them, the easier it is to influence the skills you want them to learn.

I also might recommend picking up Dorothea for another magical nuke unit, or maybe just focus Lorenz down the dark knight path. You could honestly replace Ferdi with Lorenz and it'd be basically the same result, but easier Chapter 13 if that's what you're concerned about. 

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1 hour ago, DarthR0xas said:

I think you should make Linhardt the dancer. Lysithea already has warp, and while she will be mainly on magic damage duty, she'll have time for a warp or two. Marianne also still has physic, and with riding strength you might as well just focus on making her a holy knight.

I don't know why you're recommending this course of action, because Linhardt has terrible charm, which is likely to cause him to lose, and Holy Knight is a lackluster class I can't recommend in good faith (heh).

Edited by Shadow Mir

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8 hours ago, Shadow Mir said:

I don't know why you're recommending this course of action, because Linhardt has terrible charm, which is likely to cause him to lose, and Holy Knight is a lackluster class I can't recommend in good faith (heh).

Because while Marianne has decent charm, dancer is a lackluster class that holds her back, since she can actually deal a pretty heavy amount of damage. While Holy Knight is lackluster, OP seemed intent on utilizing her riding proficiency, so I was merely mentioning that as an alternative within the ideal he wanted. Obviously I'd recommend Gremory as her final class, but Holy Knight/Dark Knight aren't awful classes to venture into for a little bit.

Linhardt, in comparison, is basically pure support. He can do some damage, but his other stats just aren't up to snuff, and he can't access Gremory. This, in my opinion, means that making him the dancer is just offering him another option of support that he could utilize. Adding more tools to his kit. There are honestly enough charm boosting stat boosters through the game to midigate his mediocre charm, and like, who else would really want them?

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Holy Knight is a pretty terrible class, if you want to use that riding boon just go Dark Knight

the only unit where I'd use Holy Knight, as a fun gimmick and nothing else though, is probably Byleth and use him as a pseudo dodge tank with white magic avoid and nosferatu.

still bad (Byleth would be better in basically any other class), mind you, but at least it does something

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18 minutes ago, DarthR0xas said:

Because while Marianne has decent charm, dancer is a lackluster class that holds her back, since she can actually deal a pretty heavy amount of damage. While Holy Knight is lackluster, OP seemed intent on utilizing her riding proficiency, so I was merely mentioning that as an alternative within the ideal he wanted. Obviously I'd recommend Gremory as her final class, but Holy Knight/Dark Knight aren't awful classes to venture into for a little bit.

Linhardt, in comparison, is basically pure support. He can do some damage, but his other stats just aren't up to snuff, and he can't access Gremory. This, in my opinion, means that making him the dancer is just offering him another option of support that he could utilize. Adding more tools to his kit. There are honestly enough charm boosting stat boosters through the game to midigate his mediocre charm, and like, who else would really want them?

The problem is, Dark Knight is just better than Holy Knight if you wanted Marianne in a mounted mage class (and I still consider it underwhelming).

Why would I want my dancer to be the same unit with Warp??? That's...rather questionable.

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Just now, Shadow Mir said:

The problem is, Dark Knight is just better than Holy Knight if you wanted Marianne in a mounted mage class (and I still consider it underwhelming)

Alright, then just do Dark Knight. I found the two to be basically the same thing in my experience, so I just said Holy Knight because Marianne is generally more Faith focused. If Dark Knight really is the superior class, then go that route.

2 minutes ago, Shadow Mir said:

Why would I want my dancer to be the same unit with Warp??? That's...rather questionable.

Because you already have a warper in Lysithea. That, and so he can do something after he warps. It offers variety in what he can do

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23 minutes ago, DarthR0xas said:

Alright, then just do Dark Knight. I found the two to be basically the same thing in my experience, so I just said Holy Knight because Marianne is generally more Faith focused. If Dark Knight really is the superior class, then go that route.

Because you already have a warper in Lysithea. That, and so he can do something after he warps. It offers variety in what he can do

The problem is that aside from being worse than Dark Knight, Holy Knight is also inferior to Bishop - doubled white magic uses and extra healing are a LOT to sacrifice for a horse, and frankly, it's not worth it, especially since all you get in return is stronger offensive white magic spells, which is pretty much useless when the offensive white magic spells are pretty lousy, other than maybe Seraphim (to say nothing of the fact that most units only get one, that one being the pathetic Nosferatu). The end result is that anyone who would be good in Holy Knight would be better off going to Dark Knight or Gremory instead, or even staying as a Bishop.

The thing is, I'd consider Warp not enough of a reason to recruit Linhardt over Mercedes, in that case.

Edited by Shadow Mir

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3 minutes ago, Shadow Mir said:

The problem is that aside from being worse than Dark Knight, Holy Knight is also inferior to Bishop - doubled white magic uses and extra healing are a LOT to sacrifice for a horse, and frankly, it's not worth it, especially since all you get in return is stronger offensive white magic spells, which is pretty much useless when the offensive white magic spells are pretty lousy, other than maybe Seraphim (to say nothing of the fact that most units only get one, that one being the pathetic Nosferatu).

Wait Holy Knight loses doubled white magic uses? Forgot about that. Nvm then.

16 minutes ago, Shadow Mir said:

The thing is, I'd consider Warp not enough of a reason to recruit Linhardt over Mercedes, in that case.

I have no clue what point you're trying to make here, I'm sure it's a valid point, but could you elaborate on what you mean?

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I can confirm that Holy Knight on Marianne sucks really bad, you're better off going with dark knight or even mortal savant if you want to boost Mari's black magic power, since white magic is too heavy. If you have a dancer, it's easy to dance a low move unit so they can move further and keep up with the team, while the dancer can also keep up with their 6 movement.

In my own Golden Deer NG maddening run, I recruited Ingrid in chapter 9, and she joins with 16 strength, 14 defense, 25 speed (I think), 20 res, and 17 charm, with c+ ranks in sword and lance. She can contribute from the get-go but bear in mind she also joins with D flying and E authority, so she can't even use the basic flier battalions yet. Also I found her paralogue very useful for finishing up class mastery for several of my units, and the reinforcements at the end are programmed to follow Ingrid and not actively follow the rest of your team. You can exploit that to make them wait on lava until they're at very low hp, then snipe them with Thrysus mages.

War Master Byleth is great and wrecked house in Silver Snow maddening. However Fierce Iron Fist is better than War master strike since each hit takes deathblow and gauntletfaire into account, and it hits thrice. War Master does give a +5 strength modifier though, over Grappler's +1.

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8 minutes ago, DarthR0xas said:

I have no clue what point you're trying to make here, I'm sure it's a valid point, but could you elaborate on what you mean?

OP is planning on recruiting Linhardt, but I just think between himself, Mercedes and Marianne, he drew the short straw.

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14 hours ago, Glennstavos said:

Besides just consistently high stats and great personal skill, Hilda's got very high charm.

 

12 hours ago, DarthR0xas said:

On paper she looks like the same old axe unit, but in practice she is one of the best units in the game.

Ok, if I were to add Hilda and Ignatz to the team, who would be the most droppable from my planned roster? Ingrid and/or Catherine and someone else? Maybe drop Cyril and have Felix go Bow Knight?

I have too many units I want to use now! If I can tighten up my roster to 11-12 units, that would be ideal, no?

 

12 hours ago, DarthR0xas said:

I think you should make Linhardt the dancer. Lysithea already has warp, and while she will be mainly on magic damage duty, she'll have time for a warp or two. Marianne also still has physic, and with riding strength you might as well just focus on making her a holy knight.

I had considered this path as well! In the end having stronger heals with Physic and double warps from bishop Linhardt seemed too good to pass on. With my Dancer dancing every turn, I was unsure I'd ever be able to take advantage of warp if Linhardt is dancer and Lysithea always attacking as my only mage. I was also afraid it would be unrealistic to hope Linhardt can win the White Heron Cup with his low charm lol.

 

34 minutes ago, Shadow Mir said:

The thing is, I'd consider Warp not enough of a reason to recruit Linhardt over Mercedes.

Do you feel Mercedes is the better choice? When I played BL on hard, I found myself using Physic much more than Fortify so I thought adding Linhardt to get Warp would be more helpful.

I honestly didn't think the stats of my Dancer/healer mattered too much since in theory they'll be dancing/healing every turn.

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1 minute ago, T-Doggo said:

Do you feel Mercedes is the better choice? When I played BL on hard, I found myself using Physic much more than Fortify so I thought adding Linhardt to get Warp would be more helpful.

YESZ!

2 minutes ago, T-Doggo said:

Ok, if I were to add Hilda and Ignatz to the team, who would be the most droppable from my planned roster? Ingrid and/or Catherine and someone else? Maybe drop Cyril and have Felix go Bow Knight?

Cyril.

2 minutes ago, T-Doggo said:

I was also afraid it would be unrealistic to hope Linhardt can win the White Heron Cup with his low charm lol.

That's because it is.

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What do you have against wyvern lord for Byleth? There's no reason not to have more fliers. Maybe are you scared of not being able to train him enough? If so, I understand.

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Thoughts on the whole Linhardt situation:

He's definitely worth picking up, at the very least, since it provides access to the Inexhaustible bow. I think he's an excellent choice as a white magic support unit - Physic is great, and there's no such thing as too many Warpers. Having Warp on not-Lysithea means you can Warp Lysithea, in case you want her to take down a high-profile enemy with low-Res. Mercedes is great as well - between the two of them, it's basically a choice between Warp and Fortify. Also, I wouldn't call Dancer Linhardt optimal in any sense, especially relative to Marianne (Boons in Riding and Swords, usable in Chapter 13).

4 hours ago, T-Doggo said:

Ok, if I were to add Hilda and Ignatz to the team, who would be the most droppable from my planned roster? Ingrid and/or Catherine and someone else? Maybe drop Cyril and have Felix go Bow Knight?

I have too many units I want to use now! If I can tighten up my roster to 11-12 units, that would be ideal, no?

One option would be to make Cyril a Wyvern Rider, then make him Hilda's adjutant with a Hand Axe or Mini Bow. That way, Hilda gets an attack boost all the time*. Alternatively, cut Felix and make him Sylvain's adjutant, to similar effect. Or vice versa, unless you're really keen on using both Swift Strike horselads.

Again, I think another offensive magic user would be good. I'm not sure if you have specific plans for Ignatz, but he can go Dark Knight or Mortal Savant.

*EDIT: As @Shadow Mir pointed out, based on Serenes Forest's information, this is incorrect. Cyril and Hilda can get up to A-support, however.

Edited by Shanty Pete's 1st Mate
Misinformation.

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1 minute ago, Shanty Pete's 1st Mate said:

One option would be to make Cyril a Wyvern Rider, then make him Hilda's adjutant with a Hand Axe or Mini Bow. That way, Hilda gets an attack boost all the time. Alternatively, cut Felix and make him Sylvain's adjutant, to similar effect. Or vice versa, unless you're really keen on using both Swift Strike horselads.

Are you sure about this? Because this page doesn't mention Hilda/Cyril in the certain allies portion.

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