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Edelgard: 9.00

Hubert: 5.525

Average score for Black Eagles: 7.263


Day 3: Ferdinand

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As one of the 3 units who learns Swift Strikes in the game, that alone gives him a high rating on Maddening mode. Doubling is hard even for naturally fast units, so guaranteeing 2 hits with a lance of your choice is nice. As long as you set him up well and he doesn't get too strength screwed, he should be able to one round most enemies. His personal ability also lets him take a different, more defensive direction by making him a dodgetank, so he has some flexibility in builds- you can make him a Paladin or Wyvern for Swift Strike Spam (SSS, as I'll probably refer to it henceforth), or make him a Swordmaster, Dancer or War Monk/Master for dodgetank shenanigans. His stats are decent, with 45% strength, and 50% speed being the main highlights. He also has good skill ranks, with no banes, but boons in Sword, Lance, Axe and Riding, with a budding talent in Heavy Armour. If you choose to unlock said talent, you get Seal Speed, which shines the most in Maddening mode. As an added bonus, he gets the Minor Crest of Cichol, which gives him a chance to deny counterattacks with combat arts- and Swift Strikes gives it 2 chances to proc (assuming the enemy survives). His chances won't be as high as Seteth's Major Crest of Cichol, but its still nice nonetheless.

Ferdinand's main flaws as a unit come from his meh bases. He's basically perfectly average in all of them, resulting in a unit who feels underwhelming at the beginning. Once he grows into his stats though, he'll reliably kill or reliably dodge, depending on what you want. Solid unit all around.

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Swift Strikes, Has a crest that boosts his combat arts, boon in axes and lances and no bane in flying so easy access to wyvern lord, easy access to death blow, what's more to want? One of the best Wyvern lord's for certain and to be honest the only thing that makes Edelgard debatably better than him is her relic which she can only use for a few chapters anyway, but Ferdinand has swift strikes and is always amazing and can actually stay in Wyvern lord since the other routes aren't super short. 

Edited by Gordin
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8.5 / 10 on Hard

the good:

- Swift Strike with automatic brave weapon effect.

- Minor crest of Cichol to occasionally prevent counter attack with combat art, although not as reliable as Seteth, is still a nice bonus.

- Useful personal for attack/gambit hit rate, as well as dodge tank potential. Easy to maintain as well, either with direct healing, Dorothea’s personal in early game, or Goddess ring/sacred weapons later on.

- Good boon and no bane with key weapon skills for a physical-oriented unit. Axe boon for easy access to Brigand and helps with Wyvern build. Lance & Riding boon makes Paladin a relatively low investment/high reward build, especially if going Silver Snow. Sword & Riding makes him a good candidate for Dancer as well. 

- Battalion Desperation. Situationally useful on Hard before learning Swift Strike to avoid eating a counter attack between two attacks. 

- Good, although not exceptional growth for a physical-oriented unit.


the mixed:

- +2 Mt special bond with Lorenz. Although having it as an option is good, the player needs to recruit Lorenz out of house. If Ferdinand goes for Wyvern build, Lorenz will also need to fly as his adjutant. Him going missing for a few chapters in Silver Snow can also be annoying.


the not-so-good:

- A relatively mediocre base, which makes him unable to pull as much weight as some of the other physical units in the early game, even though he can make up for it in late game.

Edited by DriftingWaterBottle
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I had to do it :lol:


That aside, Ferdinand I find to be a very useful front line unit. Ferdinand comes with Confidence which grants him 15 hit/avoid as long as he's at full health. This alone encourages the player to keep him healthy at all times. That can at times be a minor annoyance because when he gets a level up and his HP increases that ability gets neutralized until he reaches 100% HP again. A prayer ring or goddess ring early on will at least increase the chances that the next turn Confidence can activate again. Also having no banes in anything helps him unlock classes easier than normal so he can go in just about any physical class you like. He won't have issues with magic classes but with his magic growth starting at 20% it's wise to keep him from being a mage. His crest of Cichol can occasionally prevent ant counter attacks so that can be helpful as well.

His list of combat arts are also quite solid, on the sword side he gets Sunder which when combining with a high crit weapon like a forged Wo Dao or a fogred Cursed Ashiya Sword and a crit ring Ferdinand can achieve massive damage against enemies with low HP and/or defense. Armored Strike is an interesting axe combat art for him which does more damage based on his defense. If you're looking to make a defensive Ferdinand then this can be good. The best of all which is to no one's surprise, he gets Swift Strikes. One of the best combat arts in the game. Being able to strike an enemy twice in one turn regardless of speed is a huge boon even on maddening. He is part of the "Swift Strikes Squad" as I like to personally call it along with Sylvain and Seteth. These three make a pretty powerful core for your team especially when you have a mixture or full trio of paladins/wyvern lords. It's worth noting that while the Wyvern Lord class has generally superior combat and movement, Paladins have Lancefaire as a class skill, making the strength class modifier for Paladin an effective +7 as opposed to the Wyvern Lord's +4. Furthermore, Paladins, being horseback units, can equip guard adjutants, giving Paladins a safer enemy phase. So it becomes a matter of preferences at this point. He also can potentially negate any critical hits with the Ochain shield and recover his HP. The Spear of Assal can also recover his HP but it's between him and Seteth that will get the most use of the weapon because they have the same crest.

Ferdinand can also go Swordmaster/Assassin with Sword Avoid +20 along with a high avoid battalion, evaision ring and confidence being at full HP, making him a dodge tank on enemy phase. Yes this set would need stride and retribution support for him to be a meat shield and the damage output would be lacking, but if used correctly Ferdinand can no doubt hold off enemies as long as you don't get unlucky of course. He can finally fill a nice little role as a dancer if you would rather explore his high avoid support option but in doing so you basically eliminate a powerhouse for your team. It can be also a good idea to unlock his budding talent in heavy armor so he can get Seal Speed which is actually quite useful early on and it can be easy to certify him as an armored knight. With that, he'll be able to jack up his defense stat to 12, in a game where gaining defense stat points aren't generally common unless you're Dedue is very useful early on and throughout.

Overall, I'd give Ferdinand 8/10. He's a good front line attacker that tends to get carried more by his personal ability rather than his stat growths. They are not awful by any means at all. He may not not the fastest, bulkiest or hard hitting guy around, but he can be a pivotal player for your team when you train him, he is well worthy of having a spot on your team. Or he can be a guard adjutant, that too.

Edited by Barren
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10/10 He has swift strikes access.

.....no I’m serious. Do you know how hard it is to double on Maddening? Get the noblest of nobles in paladin for high move, lance faire, and canto, and watch everything take some serious damage. He has a good personal ability, you can make him a good dodge tank if you wanted but on maddening you need that swift strikes. He might not have great bases but turning any lance weapon into a brave weapon is just too good imo.

Edit: He would be a 9/10 but, as the rules allow, he may get a plus one for being the greatest meme, and the greatest meme deserves 10/10. Should have said that before.

Edited by Sooks1016
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Can we just agree that there's nowhere near enough jokes on Ferdinand's surname being quintessence?

That being said, I do have some maddening experience with Ferdinand. So let's go.

The numbers game:


Ferdinand pretty much has one of the weaker statlines in the beginning, his highest non-HP stats are Str and Spd, but they're 8. Yeah, these are pretty poor in the context of Maddening. His growths though are a certain improvement. 45% Str isn't amazing but it's easier for him to raise those than Spd, while he has a good 50% growth in that as well, alongside good HP, alright Dex, Luk, Def and Cha. Here's something beautifully stupid: when he's a Wyvern Lord, he gets 60% for Spd and Str, which is all kinds of good.

His strengths and weaknesses are actually pretty good. For one thing, he has no weaknesses. He has strengths in all three melee weapons, riding and has a hidden talent in armour. Even if you never want armour in and of itself, it can be worth unlocking Seal Spd. He's well able to reach the mounted classes, with an arguable debate on if it's worth him going Bow Knight or one of the mage knights, but overall Ferdinand wants a mount imo.

His magic's irrelevant. Alright, let's say more than that. Thunder, Fire and Bolganone are irrelevant in sum, but he does have Thoron if you actually decide he could use magic for range and he doesn't get hurt by Thyrsus. Meanwhile, his faith spell list has Ward and Restore, sealing him as a supportive mage if anything at all. Moving on.

His personal skill gives +15 Hit and Avoid when he's at full HP. This is great if you can find some way to maximise his damage in any of these hits or raise his avoid (Both of which I'll return to). His minor Chihol crest is nice in that he can prevent foes from countering when he uses a combat art, though Seteth has a higher chance of doing so.

With his combat arts, he has Sunder (Which is a somewhat weaker Wrath Strike with 15 crit), Focused Strike (I have never thought of a situation where it could be useful), Armoured Strike (His defence isn't amazing, but 30% of that stat in each hit could be worth considering as a CA), Shatter Slash (I actually used a fair bit in my Maddening run because it's 3 durability and def reduction's nice) and the one we all consider OP, Swift Strikes (I mean, it's a brave attack for any lance, with extra might. It also syncs really well with his personal skill and crest (being that they get extra hit when he's full HP as he should be and a chance of stopping counterattacks), I completely understand the logic on paper). His access to A Lances is also pretty easy, so it is (usually) achievable. His authority skills on the other hand blow. Battalion Desperation and Rally Dex are both on the low end of interest (Dex could be useful in some contexts but it's niche), good thing for his combat arts.

My biggest issue for out of house is that he has a stupid recruitment needing armour and can't get B rank support before timeskip. I definitely know it's possible to get him (being that I did so on my VM Maddening run only using faculty training for armour rank and managing to recruit everyone), but it's not a worthwhile thing to invest in and of itself for Byleth of all units. Worse, he has a Part II paralogue so unlike Raphael you have to have him recruited for the paralogue regardless of if you want him or not and that Paralogue is a difficult enough one in Hard. This made him a frustrating part of my planning for said run. Don't get me wrong, thanks to his growths and maddening boosts when you do get him he's got a lot of stats going for him. I just hate that he and Caspar can be unrecruitable if you're not careful and Caspar at least doesn't use Armour for his requirement like an idiot.

How did I find him?


In my CF run, I was still pretty new to the game (second playthrough) and ended up making him a Great Knight (going Soldier > Brigand > Cav > Paladin > GK), which to be fair wasn't as bad as you'd expect (I count having 27 speed as better than Hilda somehow hitting 20 Spd at level 44 or something by endgame in my first run), but he was kinda of only alright with some just being so much better than him it wasn't fair and the fact he didn't have Swift Strikes pretty much buried his chances of being relevant in the end.

With SS, he was a dedicated WL, going Soldier > Brigand > Warrior > WL and getting A authority by endgame, which would be nice for a basic enough route. He was one of 6 who were flying however, so he was a bit out of luck with some of these units being better in one way or another and of course my focusing on the faculty in that run saw him sidelined in the end. His stats were definitely better than in CF though.

For my Maddening run, he's been a slow start, mainly because of course I got him in Chapter 12 and he needed to grind flying rank for a while. HOWEVER. I now have a very solid unit that can work with three melee types and can easily provide some utility with his flight, never mind being a Swift Strikes delete button. He has been like Seteth but with better bases and worse Chihol potential, which is no insult to him. As for classes, he's hopped around a bit but has mastered Noble, Soldier, Brigand, Warrior, Wyvern Knight and is currently WL and has that and Archer left to master. Then again he's had the Knowledge gem a ton in this playthrough due to his late arrival, mainly between himself, Petra and Caspar (aka the lategame squad) and Byleth (who is selfish).

Ferdinand is very much an easy mention for "WL spam" for this game, but I do understand why people recommend for that. However, he also has a good argument for Paladin (and to a lesser extent GK) builds that centre on his use of Swift Strikes, though he is a tricky start either due to his rocky bases or needing a ton of training to get him where you want him to go. The results speak for themselves though. I'm going to give an 7/10 because he's not always Swift Strikes with a bias downward because fuck everything about his recruitment.

Edited by Dayni
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Ferdinand is a good unit, though I'm a bit surprised at how high some of the numbers in this thread are so far. Maybe my scale is a bit different.

Anyway, the good: Ferdinand has talent in axes, lances, riding, with no banes, which sets him up well to go to any physical class he wants. The most likely candidates are Wyvern because it's Wyvern, or Paladin to enhance Swift Strikes. He also has a very good personal. At full HP, he gets +15 hit and avoid, which allows him to be a premier dodgetank. He's a great choice for Dancer because of how high his avoid can get, or just Alert Stance flying builds (though the lack of +flying and lower speed than Petra or Ingrid means they give him good competition for the latter role). Swift Strikes is a nice combat art, giving him quite good offence once he reaches A in lances, though not especially different than what other units can manage with Brave post-TS.

The less good: Ferdinand's base stats are underwhelming, 8/8 offence compared to Petra's 9/10 or Edelgard and Byleth's 13/8, and his respectable but not overwhelming growths and lack of access to Darting Blow means he has trouble keeping up with the best physical fighters. Swift Strikes would be better if the Lancefaire classes availble to Ferdinand weren't a touch problematic (horses do poor things to one's speed) or if brave weapons weren't storebought as soon as we hit the timeskip.

6.5/10. He's solid, but only the third best physical fighter in his own house, and doesn't really start standing out until well into the game (either A lances or an evade build getting rolling).

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I will try to be fair because I know my Ferdinand was not quite the On-Paper Ferdinand in terms of stats. Regarding his personal, it's not great in practice. Even when you diligently heal every bruise, Ferdinand will be spending at least half his combat engagements at less than max health unless you turtle religiously. And his HP Growth is 50-80% depending on stage of the game. 70-80% for about three quarters of the game. So merely leveling up will shut off this bonus, and it certainly doesn't turn him into a dodge tank on Maddening. Swift Strikes is indeed very good, especially in the last chapters of White clouds where a lot of great weapons and relics will get refilled on durability after time skip, like the Crescent Sickle which you absolutely would not repair in CF. But I don't think my experience was that unusual seeing Ferdinand miss the ORKO on anything in post-time skip while using it. Even with the benefit of Death Blow and Lancefaire. And the weapons I wanted to swift strike with gave him annoyingly low accuracy which exasperated the issue of failing to kill things. Thank god for canto or he would be eating all my pulses. Seal Speed helps a lot with the Sothis paralogue and I suppose Chapter 9 (but chapter 9 is the easiest map in pre-time skip, so who cares how much it helps there).  

I definitely covet a unit's performance in the very early game (since those are the hardest chapters in the game with the exception of Hunting by Daybreak, Some finale chapters, and maybe some paralogues if you did them at the earliest opportunity), And Ferdinand's not good there. Sure Bernie has one point worse Str/Spd but at least she can shoot at range and curved shot at base. Tempest Lance allows him to nail some double digit damage, but he's still facing doubles from the get go so he can't tank immediately like Byleth, Edelgard or Petra without some lucky level ups in speed or defense.

I have to rate him a 5.0. I want to rate him lower because of his early game, but good skill proficiencies and combat arts really turn him around on paper. I always felt he's marginally worse than Sylvain and Sylvain is a free recruit in most serious playthroughs. Probably THE average unit of Three Houses. And I think a lot of people end up using him because the Black Eagles crew is so bad at level 1, and in SS you don't want to spend so much exp on Edelgard/Hubert since they're forcibly benched. So Ferdinand ends up pulling more weight and you feel obligated to stick with him. Also in SS's case, Seteth is pretty much Ferdinand without the potential headaches of raising Ferdinand. His skill proficiencies lead to even better classes, and his crest is straight up better. If I had to split hairs, he's a 5.5 in SS, and a 4.5 in CF.

1 hour ago, Dark Holy Elf said:

Ferdinand is a good unit, though I'm a bit surprised at how high some of the numbers in this thread are so far. Maybe my scale is a bit different.

I'm not about to shame how people vote, but I always use the full scale from 1 to 10, with 5 being the perfectly average unit who won't be a champion of your playthrough but also not expected to drag you down in any way. And in any RTU thread I've observed, that's 7-8 for most users. What the final rating of the unit ends up being in the thread doesn't bug me though, and I've had a lot of my votes in the past simply thrown out for being as much as 3-5 points under the average despite providing appropriate explanation. At the very least I promise to trash everybody's waifus consistently. Hell, at least none of the women in this game are PoR Mia/Nephenee bad that I see myself starting a flame war. 

Edited by Glennstavos
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I say 8. Would normally give him a 8.5 or 9, but Edelgard is a 9 so I have to scale down.


Swift strike. Broken.

Your early game tempest lance user. He is the only one in black eagle that can use it at base. Every other house has at least 2 units that can do it at base.

Versatile in that he can be an enemy phase unit as a dodge tank wyvern or a player phase unit as paladin. (you could do that dodge tank dancer but imo that is just a waste of dancer ability).

have good proficiencies that can make him into different classes like brigand for DB, armor knight to get the def boost, etc.


Base stats are not the best. Not the worst, but they could be better. Growths are alr too.

Gets overshadowed in mid game where he doesn't have swift strike and tempest lance becomes less valuable(still is, but not as much) since other units would have it at this point. Ex. Petra, Edelgard is going for pegaus knight, Bernie, and other out of house units.

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I'm only going to vote on characters I've used.
Have to say these threads are great inspiration for future characters builds x) 

For Ferdie, I think 7.5/10. Solid unit, one of my go to units on every run. I'd probably end up rating most of the lords and some other characters above him. 

He's been incredibly reliable and convenient for me, and I haven't had an instance of him ever being stat screwed. I also just like the convenience of his proficiencies, making it easy to get him into classes like Paladin, or Wyvern Lord. He also doesn't have a Bow bane like Sylvain, so it's a bit easier to get Hit+20 on him. Early game he can spam Tempest lance, and later on Swift Strikes. 

Sadly, I don't find his Personal isn't as good as it sounds on Maddening on Wyvern. Hit chances against him is a little too high for my tastes, and if one does land, he's done. Certainly not at the level that I'd consider him a reliable for dodgetanking, but worth it for flying mobility. 

As um.. lol.. Dancer he's pretty great too. Riding+sword proficiency, and thoron for linked supports. 

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26 minutes ago, leesangstar10 said:

Gets overshadowed in mid game where he doesn't have swift strike and tempest lance becomes less valuable(still is, but not as much) since other units would have it at this point. Ex. Petra, Edelgard is going for pegaus knight, Bernie, and other out of house units.

I think this point is worth emphasizing. It's possible, with a little luck on the training RNG and a purposeful weapon choice in the forced aux fight, to have Tempest Lance (or in general, insert D-rank combat art of your choice here) by Chapter 2, and utterly trivial to have it by Chapter 3, on anyone you want. Most physical units will want to pick up D rank lances anyway, both because Tempest Lance is good but also because so many physical class lines require lances at some point. Starting with Tempest Lance is nice (at worst, it's 100 skill exp which can be spent elsewhere) but an advantage which evaporates extremely quickly.

1 hour ago, Glennstavos said:

I'm not about to shame how people vote, but I always use the full scale from 1 to 10, with 5 being the perfectly average unit who won't be a champion of your playthrough but also not expected to drag you down in any way.

Yeah, I definitely second you on this. I'm the same (well, I imagine my average will come out to more like 5.5, but we'll see). Agreed that I'm not going to shame others for voting differently... in fact it doesn't matter if we use different scales, as long as roughly the same pool of people vote each time it'll all balance out.

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5.5/10. Good, but his personal is not nearly as great as everyone likes to pretend it is (Let's face it, unless you religiously heal Ferdinand every time he gets scratched or gets HP on a level up, or give him a weapon setup built around staying at full health, which can be done with anyone, I'd wager Confidence is doing nothing more often than not). Swift Strikes access helps, but what DOESN'T is that if he wants to boost it, he has to be in a class that nukes his speed.

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I'm on the overrated camp for Ferdinand as well, at least on Maddening.  Ferdinand's speed is not good enough to get consistent doubles like many of the fastest characters in the game.  This leaves him as a Swift Strikes bot, but the problem with that is that it forces you into a bad choice in terms of final class.  Either you go Paladin, and deal with the poor stat bonuses and growths for the class (-1 speed when mounted and -10% speed growth), or you go Wyvern Lord and lose out on getting a class-based weaponfaire ability (effectively costing 5 strength, 10 strength on Swift Strike uses).  Further, if you ever miss one of your attacks on Swift Strikes, and so aren't able to kill the enemy in one round, Ferdinand is very likely to die on the counterattack and follow up.  And being confined to one weapon class (lances) is pain when dealing with enemies strong against that weapon type (e.g. Wyvern Lords and Warriors).

His personal ability is cute, but it requires too much babysitting for my tastes.  I don't like the idea of losing 15% evasion at random times because Ferdinand levels up and gets an extra point to max HP.

I get why people like him, and I think he's usable in a fringe capacity.  But I would much rather have other units on my front line.  7/10.

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