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Are there any games or situations where growth units are better than base-high or prepromote units?

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34 minutes ago, Naoshi said:

I guess I just play very different from others, since I consider pre-promoted units either useful at beginning or unnecessary or trash.

And I don't agree about Amelia. She one of the best units, the three kids always end carrying through the game.

The thing is that while growth units will typically come out point for point stronger than comparative bases units (at least ideally), it takes extra effort to train growth units as you need to feed exp to them. This is most exemplified with the Sacred Stones trainee units which need incredible babying to get to levels where they can actively contribute. Of course there's absolutely nothing wrong with feeding Ross and Amelia kills, it just means taking longer to clear maps, and most conversations like this are spoken from the perspective of the most efficient and easiest way to play.

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On 6/20/2021 at 3:37 PM, Naoshi said:

I guess I just play very different from others, since I consider pre-promoted units either useful at beginning or unnecessary or trash.

And I don't agree about Amelia. She one of the best units, the three kids always end carrying through the game.

There's nothing wrong with using them - the thing is they tend to not compare very well against their competition despite the extra levels. For example, Ewan needs to get close to his SECOND promotion before he can even catch up to Saleh's base stats. Considering that they generally need a lot of babying before they can actively contribute... I'd find it hard to buy into them being among the best units in Sacred Stones.

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Path of Radiance is in a bit of a unique state. I don't know that it qualifies exactly, but it does tend to favor growth units since bonus experience removes the disadvantage that growth units have. Titania is amazing to be sure, but growth units take center stage roughly halfway into the game.

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9 hours ago, samthedigital said:

Path of Radiance is in a bit of a unique state. I don't know that it qualifies exactly, but it does tend to favor growth units since bonus experience removes the disadvantage that growth units have. Titania is amazing to be sure, but growth units take center stage roughly halfway into the game.

I don't know if BEXP totally removes the discrepancy (since prepromotes and high bases units can partake in it as well), but I definitely agree that it makes raising growth units easier, at least. And I have to wonder how, say, Shinon fits into this paradigm. He's really good in the earlygame (thanks to his bases), but rejoins practically worthless (again, thanks to his bases).

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

I don't know if BEXP totally removes the discrepancy (since prepromotes and high bases units can partake in it as well), but I definitely agree that it makes raising growth units easier, at least. And I have to wonder how, say, Shinon fits into this paradigm. He's really good in the earlygame (thanks to his bases), but rejoins practically worthless (again, thanks to his bases).

I would say that it does remove the discrepancy completely. BEXP is fairly plentiful, so even if some prepromotes might want the help we have plenty to dump into our other units. The best units after chapter 11 are all units that we dump a bunch of bexp into also (Jill and Marcia in particular). Astrid might be the best example of this. She would be downright awful in any other Fire Emblem game with her bases, but she can effectively become as good as Titania a few chapters after she joins without any of the drawbacks that she'd have otherwise.

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13 hours ago, samthedigital said:

Path of Radiance is in a bit of a unique state. I don't know that it qualifies exactly, but it does tend to favor growth units since bonus experience removes the disadvantage that growth units have. Titania is amazing to be sure, but growth units take center stage roughly halfway into the game.

I never got that feeling about Path of Radiance. Simply because prepromotes tend to have fantastic bases in Path of Radiance. Stefan and Tanith are likely to completely outclass any of their competitors by the time you get them and their bases support them into end game. Even Geoffrey, who is obtained super late, has bases that will be on par or better than similar units you've been growing all game. By 20/20 growth units will lead over prepromotes in only 1 or 2 stats, and will actually still be outclassed in other stats. Growth Units also come with more reliable stats due to the lack of RNG determining how good they are. From a pure efficiency perspective, I don't see any decent argument against dropping growth units as soon as you get the powerful base stats units in Path of Radiance, since the extra investment in Growth Units will just lead to a unit over similar quality to the one you have and can use right now. Maybe Skill investment could be a decent argument as you might have already invested skills into your growth units in early game and said skills can't be transferred, but overall the gap in quality by end game between growth units and base units ends up being so small, there is little incentive to really train growth units. Well, besides doing it purely for fun. But who plays Fire Emblem for fun XD

DISCLAIMER: This doesn't go for all prepromotes in Path of Radiance. As noted Shinon sucks and you have ample motivation to train up mages, since prepromoted Sages are all stuck with knives instead of staves.

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26 minutes ago, Jotari said:

Simply because prepromotes tend to have fantastic bases in Path of Radiance. Stefan and Tanith are likely to completely outclass any of their competitors by the time you get them and their bases support them into end game.

For Stephan it really depends on who you consider his competitors to be. He's good when compared to Mia and Zihark, but that's a low bar; he's realistically competing with mounted 1-2 range units who are far better than he is. Tanith is a good unit to be sure, but Marcia will be close to her when she joins, and Jill will be better. Bonus experience is really just that strong.

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From a pure efficiency perspective, I don't see any decent argument against dropping growth units as soon as you get the powerful base stats units in Path of Radiance, since the extra investment in Growth Units will just lead to a unit over similar quality to the one you have and can use right now.

In an 'efficient' playthrough there aren't enough mounted prepromotes to fully replace mounted growth units, and unless you're superfluously using bonus experience there's enough to go around; I think that it's unfair to call it an investment when all we're really doing is spending a few minutes dumping bonus experience in the menu.

Edited by samthedigital

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I feel like that's a bit disingenuous. Jill and Marcia are so good because they provide something Titania can't in flight utility. BEXP makes it so you can skip their training arc so to speak and it definitely makes them better than they would otherwise be, but Titania is still your best combat unit well until midgame if you use her liberally. Even by endgame her strength is the only thing that might lag a little bit, since knight ward can easily keep her speed competitive if used smartly. You can toss her a silver forge as thanks for carrying your ass through the game. Folk like Stefan and Tanith never really fall off as mentioned, and while Calill doesn't get staves, her high base weapon ranks keep her competitive combat wise with your trained mages. You'll fill out a lot of your ranks with growth units simply because much of the cast is comprised of them, but I wouldn't call PoR a growth unit biased game by any means.

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27 minutes ago, Ether said:

I feel like that's a bit disingenuous. Jill and Marcia are so good because they provide something Titania can't in flight utility. BEXP makes it so you can skip their training arc so to speak and it definitely makes them better than they would otherwise be, but Titania is still your best combat unit well until midgame if you use her liberally. Even by endgame her strength is the only thing that might lag a little bit, since knight ward can easily keep her speed competitive if used smartly. You can toss her a silver forge as thanks for carrying your ass through the game. Folk like Stefan and Tanith never really fall off as mentioned, and while Calill doesn't get staves, her high base weapon ranks keep her competitive combat wise with your trained mages. You'll fill out a lot of your ranks with growth units simply because much of the cast is comprised of them, but I wouldn't call PoR a growth unit biased game by any means.

Jill has flight and as much strength as Titania on the chapter after she joins unless you're getting Titania to level 15 or something, and that's well before the halfway point. Several other units can reach or surpass her combat by chapter 15 or sooner, it just depends on how much bonus experience you want to spend. I also think that it's fair to take classes into consideration given that it's just another parameter to consider.

Edited by samthedigital

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59 minutes ago, samthedigital said:

For Stephan it really depends on who you consider his competitors to be. He's good when compared to Mia and Zihark, but that's a low bar; he's realistically competing with mounted 1-2 range units who are far better than he is. Tanith is a good unit to be sure, but Marcia will be close to her when she joins, and Jill will be better. Bonus experience is really just that strong.

True, I was mainly comparing units against other units of their same class. And to be clear I wasn't saying that there's absolutely no reason to keep using the units you've been training since the start of the game. Just that once you get Stefen there's no real reason to use Mia. For the likes of Marcia, while I think Tanith is better, she's still good enough to justify using two Falcon Knights.

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In an 'efficient' playthrough there aren't enough mounted prepromotes to fully replace mounted growth units, and unless you're superfluously using bonus experience there's enough to go around; I think that it's unfair to call it an investment when all we're really doing is spending a few minutes dumping bonus experience in the menu.

I would call it an investment considering you could invest the same BEXP in a prepromote. Elincia I think would be the prime example of a unit that benefits greatly from BEXP as a prepromote, as she is a pretty great unit, you just don't have any time to give her the required levels to put her on par. But if you're willing to save the BEXP for her she should be able to contribute pretty well in end game. Of course from an efficiency stand point there's also not a massive amount of justification for holding off on a resource for a unit that's available for like three maps Of course the way her low starting levels and bases works out, she's one of those prime examples of a unit that is both a prepromote and a growth unit, so bringing her up in a comparison between prepromotes and growth units is crossing wires a bit...so, uh, yeah just ignore what I said. Point is prepromotes can make use from BEXP too, not as much use but still enough use to the extent that there is competition.

47 minutes ago, samthedigital said:

Jill has flight and as much strength as Titania on the chapter after she joins unless you're getting Titania to level 15 or something, and that's well before the halfway point. Several other units can reach or surpass her combat by chapter 15 or sooner, it just depends on how much bonus experience you want to spend. I also think that it's fair to take classes into consideration given that it's just another parameter to consider.

Jill also ends up with less Hp, str and def than Haar. She's a bit faster than him so will double easier, but that's why he comes with a Brave Axe. It's hard to really call it a growths focused game when prepromotes commonly have growths in excess to tier 1 competitors. Like Haar beats Jill in growths in all her relevant stats. She only has speed, resistance and, huh, magic over him. Jill has a 30% magic growth!? How wow, I never noticed at all. Maybe they designed her to use the Bolt Axe, but didn't realize 30% isn't that great a growth when you start with a base of 0. But yeah, anyway my point is that a level 20/11 Jill will be stat for stat the same as base Haar and from there he has better growths than her and likely a much better axe rank. Jill is still a great unit and well worth bringing to end game, but it's not like the game is particularly favoring growth units when it makes late game units this good.

Edited by Jotari

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25 minutes ago, Jotari said:

Point is prepromotes can make use from BEXP too, not as much use but still enough use to the extent that there is competition.

I find that units eventually reach a point where they can one round enemies and don't really need any more investment, so my primary goal is getting as many units that can do that as possible while also having enough for secondary goals. I mentioned that FE9 is tricky earlier, and that's because the prepromotes that are good generally just don't need any bonus experience to achieve this. I guess it would be a little different Maniac mode, but that's another beast entirely.

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For the likes of Marcia, while I think Tanith is better, she's still good enough to justify using two Falcon Knights.

Why do you think that Tanith is better? They're fairly similar statistically, but Marcia has a huge join time lead on her. The general strategy for 'efficient' (I hate that word though) playthroughs is to dump a ton of bonus experience on Marcia by at least chapter 12 so that she can solo that map. She's also one of the two options to get the desert chapter done quickly along with a few other flier only jobs, so the question then becomes whether you want a second (or 3rd at that point) flier for the army.

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56 minutes ago, samthedigital said:

Jill has flight and as much strength as Titania on the chapter after she joins unless you're getting Titania to level 15 or something, and that's well before the halfway point. Several other units can reach or surpass her combat by chapter 15 or sooner, it just depends on how much bonus experience you want to spend. I also think that it's fair to take classes into consideration given that it's just another parameter to consider.

Where are you getting your numbers from?

Jill joins as a level 8 Wyvern Rider with 11 base Strength and a 40% growth, in chapter 12.

Titania joins as a level 1 Paladin with 12 base Strength and a 45% growth, in chapter 1. She has full availability (save for the first few turns of chapter 2) up to that point.

So, let's say your Titania has gotten to level 6 by chapter 12 (not too unreasonable if she's getting fielded every map). By this point, she's expected to have a Strength stat of 14.25 (let's assume bad RNG, and round down to 14). That's only three points above Jill's base, which, with a 40% growth, will take her (on average) 8 levels to eclipse. Getting that many levels into Jill, even over two maps, seems a serious stretch. Like, I would expect Jill to surpass Titania's in Strength eventually (more levels to gain, even with a lower growth), but not as immediately as you suggested.

3 hours ago, samthedigital said:

I would say that it does remove the discrepancy completely. BEXP is fairly plentiful, so even if some prepromotes might want the help we have plenty to dump into our other units. The best units after chapter 11 are all units that we dump a bunch of bexp into also (Jill and Marcia in particular). Astrid might be the best example of this. She would be downright awful in any other Fire Emblem game with her bases, but she can effectively become as good as Titania a few chapters after she joins without any of the drawbacks that she'd have otherwise.

BEXP can help Astrid turn great, but it's still a contested resource. It can alternately be used to make Titania even better. And it's not like I can BEXP all of my growth units to greatness. Whereas, units who don't need BEXP to do well (i.e. most prepromotes) aren't competing for a chance to be great. They're great already.

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

Where are you getting your numbers from?

Jill joins as a level 8 Wyvern Rider with 11 base Strength and a 40% growth, in chapter 12.

I did mention earlier that bonus experience is rather broken in PoR. It's more than reasonable to get Jill either to promotion or close to it by using bonus experience in the base the chapter after she joins. I am basing this off of personal experience, but there are examples of strategies that dump bonus experience similarly to how I've described in LTCs and speedruns, so this isn't unreasonable in other contexts. Otherwise it really is as simple as there being way too much bonus experience in FE9 unless we're talking about maniac mode.

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It can alternately be used to make Titania even better.

How much better are you really making Titania? She doesn't need the bonus experience; she can do anything combat related without it. I did mention that PoR is complicated, it definitely doesn't lean in a way that makes (some) prepromotes bad or anything close to it.

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Jill also ends up with less Hp, str and def than Haar. She's a bit faster than him so will double easier, but that's why he comes with a Brave Axe. It's hard to really call it a growths focused game when prepromotes commonly have growths in excess to tier 1 competitors. Like Haar beats Jill in growths in all her relevant stats. She only has speed, resistance and, huh, magic over him. Jill has a 30% magic growth!? How wow, I never noticed at all. Maybe they designed her to use the Bolt Axe, but didn't realize 30% isn't that great a growth when you start with a base of 0. But yeah, anyway my point is that a level 20/11 Jill will be stat for stat the same as base Haar and from there he has better growths than her and likely a much better axe rank. Jill is still a great unit and well worth bringing to end game, but it's not like the game is particularly favoring growth units when it makes late game units this good.

Speedwings aren't in great demand, so Haar can use them to achieve doubling thresholds. Haar is in a similar boat to Tanith to a greater degree though; he joins late, so while he can be as effective as Jill with speedwings he's not outperforming her; the stat differences outside of speed are largely insignificant.

Edited by samthedigital

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1 hour ago, samthedigital said:

I find that units eventually reach a point where they can one round enemies and don't really need any more investment, so my primary goal is getting as many units that can do that as possible while also having enough for secondary goals. I mentioned that FE9 is tricky earlier, and that's because the prepromotes that are good generally just don't need any bonus experience to achieve this. I guess it would be a little different Maniac mode, but that's another beast entirely.

Yeah, but that's pretty much my point entirely. It's hard to call it a growths focused game when the prepromote units come out of the box as good as the growth units are likely to be without the need for investment. You could focus bexp on your tier 1 units, and that's likely what you will be doing for the majority of the game due to there being more of them, but the investment won't actually let them surpass prepromotes by much (aside from hoarding stat boosters on one unit) so once the prepromotes do show up it's just as worth it to put bexp into them.

39 minutes ago, samthedigital said:

Speedwings aren't in great demand, so Haar can use them to achieve doubling thresholds. Haar is in a similar boat to Tanith to a greater degree though; he joins late, so while he can be as effective as Jill with speedwings he's not outperforming her; the stat differences outside of speed are largely insignificant.

No, he's not going to be out performing her greatly, like I said Jill is still a great unit and well worth fielding. But my point is that she's not significantly out performing him either, despite the fact that you've been investing in her throughout the game and Haar just shows up ready to do everything she can right out the gate. Simply put, if investing heavily in growth units doesn't actually lead them to outclassing units who require no investment, is the game really favouring said growth units? I say no, if it were favouring growth units then there would be an obvious advantage in how powerful growth units are by end game, which there isn't. Now one could see your argument that bexp, as a mechanic, does indeed help growth units by giving them an easier method of levelling to get around their bases. But for the one game in which we have such a mechanic that could actually favor growth units (Radiant Dawn doesn't as the 3 stat guarantee kind of nerfs growth units that are hoping to get more than that), the advantage of bexp doesn't actually do enough to make it a growth focused game because overall they made prepromote units who are just fantastic the moment they're deployed.

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36 minutes ago, samthedigital said:

I did mention earlier that bonus experience is rather broken in PoR. It's more than reasonable to get Jill either to promotion or close to it by using bonus experience in the base the chapter after she joins. I am basing this off of personal experience, but there are examples of strategies that dump bonus experience similarly to how I've described in LTCs and speedruns, so this isn't unreasonable in other contexts. Otherwise it really is as simple as there being way too much bonus experience in FE9 unless we're talking about maniac mode.

I mean, sure - but you also could have given it to Marcia, another flier who joins earlier. Or Soren, to get him to promotion for another healer. Or Boyd, who has some of the best combat in the game. Point is, while Jill makes great use of bonus experience, we shouldn't treat her getting a load of it as any sort of given.

40 minutes ago, samthedigital said:

How much better are you really making Titania? She doesn't need the bonus experience; she can do anything combat related without it. I did mention that PoR is complicated, it definitely doesn't lean in a way that makes (some) prepromotes bad or anything close to it.

You already argued that, with a BEXP dump, Jill will have more Strength than Titania. However, we agree that Jill is starting from behind. So on the flip side, Titania could use the same pool of BEXP to increase her own Strength, among other stats. This will improve her bulk and ability to one-round with Hand Axes. 

It strikes me as a kind of doublethink: "Titania already has good stats, so she doesn't need BEXP" can't feasibly coexist with "Jill is better than Titania because, with BEXP, she has superior stats". Jill has an advantage, but not in stats (at least, not until promotion) - being a flier is its own great advantage in PoR. That said, Titania does have another advantage we haven't mentioned yet - weapon ranks. No amount of BEXP is gonna help Jill with those (although, she can eventually raise her ranks via combat).

Is Jill a better unit than Titania? I dunno, maybe? I'd say Marcia, Jill, and Titania are probably the top three units in the game (in no clear order). Titania has the clear numerical and availability advantage, but the fliers... well, they're fliers in a game where that's a great trait.

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

I mean, sure - but you also could have given it to Marcia, another flier who joins earlier. Or Soren, to get him to promotion for another healer. Or Boyd, who has some of the best combat in the game. Point is, while Jill makes great use of bonus experience, we shouldn't treat her getting a load of it as any sort of given.

Boyd's combat is effectively the same as a lot of mounted units, and his bulk is lacking somewhat, so he's not really a great investment. I'll try not to be sidetracked too much though, the point is that you can actually do all of those things while still leveling Jill. We don't have to assume that Jill is trained, but it's also not correct to use it against her when the resources required to do so are not that valuable.

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It strikes me as a kind of doublethink: "Titania already has good stats, so she doesn't need BEXP" can't feasibly coexist with "Jill is better than Titania because, with BEXP, she has superior stats". Jill has an advantage, but not in stats (at least, not until promotion) - being a flier is its own great advantage in PoR. That said, Titania does have another advantage we haven't mentioned yet - weapon ranks. No amount of BEXP is gonna help Jill with those (although, she can eventually raise her ranks via combat).

You're misinterpreting my argument somewhat. I said that flight along with similar (or better, eventually the strength difference will matter) makes Jill better from the time she joins until the end of the game. You can have an argument about who is better overall, but this isn't the kind of debate I'm interested in. Weapon ranks aren't really worth considering unless we're talking about magic based units, so that isn't really a critical piece of information.

 

1 hour ago, Jotari said:

Yeah, but that's pretty much my point entirely. It's hard to call it a growths focused game when the prepromote units come out of the box as good as the growth units are likely to be without the need for investment.

The important thing is that the growth units are useful when the prepromotes don't actually exist, and it's an important point that you didn't mention in that post. I think that you touched on that point when you talked about Elincia earlier, but I am sure you will agree that it's far more valuable to dump bonus experience on units that can contribute for a large portion of the game than saving it just because we get a unit that is just as good for another small portion of the game. That isn't considering the fact that using both can oftentimes be better, so we would train the growth unit to begin with. This does make the prepromotes worse with the exception of Titania even if their stats end up more or less the same.

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No, he's not going to be out performing her greatly, like I said Jill is still a great unit and well worth fielding. But my point is that she's not significantly out performing him either, despite the fact that you've been investing in her throughout the game and Haar just shows up ready to do everything she can right out the gate.

I just want to note that Haar does need Speedwings to contribute as much as Jill does with bonus experience, and it is a significant difference. It's worth considering as a resource as much as the bonus experience is.

Edited by samthedigital

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I find it interesting seeing all this back and forth about Path of Radiance and how it was for growth units vs base-stat units, mainly because Path of Radiance was my first FE game, and it was the one that made me think that it really came down to each individual unit, rather than any general trend of growth vs pre-promote. I think the reason for that is that almost everyone in the game is a viable unit, thanks to BEXP and just how the game's balanced overall.

That said, I usually considered BEXP as something best used mainly on a character that's just a few levels away from level 20 and has already hit some of the stat caps, so perhaps I leaned a bit more towards growth units in that particular respect? I don't know; I pretty much always ended up with a mix of different units.

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10 hours ago, samthedigital said:

The important thing is that the growth units are useful when the prepromotes don't actually exist, and it's an important point that you didn't mention in that post. I think that you touched on that point when you talked about Elincia earlier, but I am sure you will agree that it's far more valuable to dump bonus experience on units that can contribute for a large portion of the game than saving it just because we get a unit that is just as good for another small portion of the game. That isn't considering the fact that using both can oftentimes be better, so we would train the growth unit to begin with. This does make the prepromotes worse with the exception of Titania even if their stats end up more or less the same.

No, I did mention that

12 hours ago, Jotari said:

Yeah, but that's pretty much my point entirely. It's hard to call it a growths focused game when the prepromote units come out of the box as good as the growth units are likely to be without the need for investment. You could focus bexp on your tier 1 units, and that's likely what you will be doing for the majority of the game due to there being more of them, but the investment won't actually let them surpass prepromotes by much (aside from hoarding stat boosters on one unit) so once the prepromotes do show up it's just as worth it to put bexp into them.

Obviously the fact that prepromotes don't exist for much of the game means you're going to be using tier 1 units. That is standard and goes for every game in the series. The point is that the investment you do give your tier 1 units does not result in them being much better than the prepromotes when you do get them. I'd even hesitate to call most of the tier 1 units in Path of Radiance growth units when their growths are generally on par with the tier 2 characters. I think the thing by far helping tier 1 units is Path of Radiance's unassinable skill system, which makes the use of every skill scroll a permanent investment that you're more likely to use on tier 1 units as you get a lot of the skills before prepromotes start showing up. But I'm not going to say the game is favouring tier 1 units by doing the standard thing of only giving you one or two prepromomtes in the first half of the game. I'm saying that even if you do give bexp to the tier 1 units, it doesn't actually make them better than the prepromotes. Of course they're being favoured in the first half of the game, because their competitors don't exist. That's not exclusive to Path of Radiance. We're talking here about how growth units fair against prepromotes. I'm not advocating you hoard you bexp until end game (though maybe hoard a bit from Ike's promotion onwards if you really want to use a max level Elincia), nor am I saying you should in any way try to solo the game with Tatiana until Stefan shows up. I'm saying Path of Radiance, even with it's bexp, is not rewarding the use of Growth Units. Compare it to a game that actually does reward the use of growth units like Three Houses. Prepromotes in that game are significantly worse by the time you get them compared to growth units due to the investment growth units receiving making them outclass later game characters (with some exceptions like gunning for Catherine of course). Now this is more from class skills than stats, and that is one aspect it actually shares with Path of Radiance, but even with that aspect growth units do not surpass prepromotes anywhere near as close to as in Three Houses, partly because the skill system is much more important in Three Houses, but also because most of the prepromotes in Path of Radiance are just that great.

To boil what I'm saying down to its simplest terms.

-If a game favors growth units, then growth units will be better. Not better by virtue of them existing when something else does, they will be better by virtue of their growths eventually making them strong enough to mitigate their low bases.

-If a game favors prepromotes, then they will be better immediately better than the units you've been training up to that point and will continue to be better.

I think Path of Radiance more readily falls into the latter category as the prepromotes do have comparable growths and unless you're showing favoritism to a specific unit, probably will have better bases than their competitors when they first show up. I don't think you can in any way say a game favors growth units if the end result of a game is that the tier 1 units are on par both in terms of 20/20 stats and growths with prepromotes, the "growth" aspect of the growth unit has not actually helped them. At the very least one could say the game is balanced between the two design philosophies, though definitely not in favor of growth units even if it has a few mechanics that do favor them.

Edited by Jotari

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5 hours ago, Jotari said:

I think the thing by far helping tier 1 units is Path of Radiance's unassinable skill system, which makes the use of every skill scroll a permanent investment that you're more likely to use on tier 1 units as you get a lot of the skills before prepromotes start showing up. 

Skills are actually pretty bad in Path of Radiance for the most part. Generally speaking they're used on Paladins or for niche uses otherwise. I'm not sure what skills you're referring to that actually help growth units a lot early on.

 

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Obviously the fact that prepromotes don't exist for much of the game means you're going to be using tier 1 units. That is standard and goes for every game in the series. The point is that the investment you do give your tier 1 units does not result in them being much better than the prepromotes when you do get them. I'd even hesitate to call most of the tier 1 units in Path of Radiance growth units when their growths are generally on par with the tier 2 characters.

Just about every tier 1 unit wants to get stats from levels and get to level 20, so I'd say that they fit the definition of a growth unit archetype. If we want to generalize many Fire Emblem games prefer units with strong bases and promotion bonuses regardless of growths if they're not promoted, and that's simply not true in Path of Radiance.

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I'm saying Path of Radiance, even with it's bexp, is not rewarding the use of Growth Units.

I'm not sure I follow here. If we use bonus experience on growth units it's more effective than using it on prepromotes. Isn't that the definition of rewarding the player for using growth units? It's not exactly topical, but even Titania falls off later on in favor of some of the other Paladins because her growths and supports won't match their stats.

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I think Path of Radiance more readily falls into the latter category as the prepromotes do have comparable growths and unless you're showing favoritism to a specific unit, probably will have better bases than their competitors when they first show up.

Outside of Titania this just isn't true unless you're using the word favoritism very loosely. If we spend bonus experience to optimize 'efficiency' then growth units will be at least on par with and often at least marginally better than prepromotes when they join. I would call this favoritism as much as I would call giving Titania the bulk of the kills on the first 9 maps favoritism.

In FE9 if we compare a growth unit to their counterpart in terms of class it is much closer (I would still say it favors growth units, but it is a hell of a lot closer), but if we disregard that there is a definite gap. Of the 12? prepromotes only 1 of them is significantly better than the good growth units for any period of time. There are two more that can compete with the best growth units while still not being better than them. Besides that there are some utility prepromotes and 6? prepromotes that can never be as good as growth units just because their classes are bad.

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2 hours ago, samthedigital said:

Skills are actually pretty bad in Path of Radiance for the most part. Generally speaking they're used on Paladins or for niche uses otherwise. I'm not sure what skills you're referring to that actually help growth units a lot early on.

T o be honest I'm just trying to toss a bone to the idea of growth units. I can't remember any specific skills in this game aside from the fact that to get blessing you have to not get Reyson and the Hawks, which is a hilariously unablanced choice. I guess that's a testement to how unremarkable skills are in general (outside of stuff like wrath+resolve combo).

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Just about every tier 1 unit wants to get stats from levels and get to level 20, so I'd say that they fit the definition of a growth unit archetype. If we want to generalize many Fire Emblem games prefer units with strong bases and promotion bonuses regardless of growths if they're not promoted, and that's simply not true in Path of Radiance.

I'm not sure I follow here. If we use bonus experience on growth units it's more effective than using it on prepromotes. Isn't that the definition of rewarding the player for using growth units? It's not exactly topical, but even Titania falls off later on in favor of some of the other Paladins because her growths and supports won't match their stats.

No, because the growth units don't turn out any better than the units you get later. If the logic is "Using growth units means they can be used at end game" then every Fire Emblem rewards growth units because every game will let the first ten units you get be viable for endgame, give or take a Jeigan (or Ronan). The point is that Path of Radiance does not make it's growth units strong enough to outstrip the prepromotes they compete against. The things your praising Path of Radiance for doing are things that literally every single Fire Emblem does.

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Outside of Titania this just isn't true unless you're using the word favoritism very loosely. If we spend bonus experience to optimize 'efficiency' then growth units will be at least on par with and often at least marginally better than prepromotes when they join. I would call this favoritism as much as I would call giving Titania the bulk of the kills on the first 9 maps favoritism.

Yes, that's exactly my point. They're on par with, not better, and if they are better, it's only very slightly. If the game were rewarding growth untis then they would be obviously better.

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In FE9 if we compare a growth unit to their counterpart in terms of class it is much closer (I would still say it favors growth units, but it is a hell of a lot closer), but if we disregard that there is a definite gap. Of the 12? prepromotes only 1 of them is significantly better than the good growth units for any period of time. There are two more that can compete with the best growth units while still not being better than them. Besides that there are some utility prepromotes and 6? prepromotes that can never be as good as growth units just because their classes are bad.

What 1 are you referring to that's significantly better for any period of time? I'm guessing Tatiana, but I'd also say Stefan will outclass much of your army from join time and a long portion of the game. Even ignoring stats, he comes with Astra and an S rank sword in Chapter 15. Sure, he doesn't have wings, but that's not an argument in favor of growth units, that's an argument in favor of the class system being unbalanced.

Edited by Jotari

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On 7/6/2021 at 1:14 PM, samthedigital said:

I would say that it does remove the discrepancy completely. BEXP is fairly plentiful, so even if some prepromotes might want the help we have plenty to dump into our other units. The best units after chapter 11 are all units that we dump a bunch of bexp into also (Jill and Marcia in particular). Astrid might be the best example of this. She would be downright awful in any other Fire Emblem game with her bases, but she can effectively become as good as Titania a few chapters after she joins without any of the drawbacks that she'd have otherwise.

I disagree with the assessment of Astrid. She's capable of catching up to your other growth units in her starting chapter and without BEXP. The chapter provides plenty of flying enemies for her to kill, and she is more than capable of doing so. She'd be one of the better Ests even without BEXP.

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52 minutes ago, Jotari said:

No, because the growth units don't turn out any better than the units you get later. If the logic is "Using growth units means they can be used at end game" then every Fire Emblem rewards growth units because every game will let the first ten units you get be viable for endgame, give or take a Jeigan (or Ronan). The point is that Path of Radiance does not make it's growth units strong enough to outstrip the prepromotes they compete against. The things your praising Path of Radiance for doing are things that literally every single Fire Emblem does.

To be clear I am not praising Path of Radiance for anything; I am not commenting on whether or not it's a good design choice. In any case the logic has nothing to do with using units at the end of the game. It has everything to do with comparing their relative utility throughout the game. Path of Radiance does function in a way that lets growth units thrive throughout the game especially compared to prepromotes whether it be because of availability or the ones that they give the player are just not very good.

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What 1 are you referring to that's significantly better for any period of time? I'm guessing Tatiana, but I'd also say Stefan will outclass much of your army from join time and a long portion of the game. Even ignoring stats, he comes with Astra and an S rank sword in Chapter 15. Sure, he doesn't have wings, but that's not an argument in favor of growth units, that's an argument in favor of the class system being unbalanced.

If you want to praise him for his sword rank and Astra you also have to penalize him for his lack of any other weapon ranks or a mount. If we do want to factor in just his numerical stats then he's not beating Jill statistically at that point in the game certainly, and a trained Marcia is going to be close especially if she's given the energy drop. Kieran might not be too far off either, and several other units are probably only lacking in a few points of str. Conveniently enough better weapons fix that disparity. I'm not going to say that Stephan is outright bad; he can provide some utility, but he certainly isn't great. The discussion only really flips on maniac mode where things are significantly different.

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Sure, he doesn't have wings, but that's not an argument in favor of growth units, that's an argument in favor of the class system being unbalanced.

I want to emphasize my point here. It is an argument that growth units are better than prepromoted units. If Jill, Marcia, Kieran, Astrid, etc, etc are better than Stefan it is an argument in favor of growth units being better than prepromoted units. The classes might be unbalanced, but if you ignore the class labels and just look at the numbers Stefan is a 6 move unit (without canto) and is worse than the growths units they give you just because of that.

 

11 minutes ago, Fabulously Olivier said:

I disagree with the assessment of Astrid. She's capable of catching up to your other growth units in her starting chapter and without BEXP. The chapter provides plenty of flying enemies for her to kill, and she is more than capable of doing so. She'd be one of the better Ests even without BEXP.

 

Unless your units are really underleveled I don't see this happening. Besides that she still stinks being relegated to player phase combat, and she doesn't actually do very much. If bonus experience did not exist I do think that Astrid would be better than most ests to be sure, but she would be far worse than she is now. That's for Path of Radiance in particular though. It doesn't negate the fact that if you throw her in another Fire Emblem game in chapter 13 with those bases she'd be awful unless she got babied.

Edited by samthedigital

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3 minutes ago, samthedigital said:

To be clear I am not praising Path of Radiance for anything; I am not commenting on whether or not it's a good design choice. In any case the logic has nothing to do with using units at the end of the game. It has everything to do with comparing their relative utility throughout the game. Path of Radiance does function in a way that lets growth units thrive throughout the game especially compared to prepromotes whether it be because of availability or the ones that they give the player are just not very good.

But that's just not true, because the prepromotes the game gives you are very good.

3 minutes ago, samthedigital said:

If you want to praise him for his sword rank and Astra you also have to penalize him for his lack of any other weapon ranks or a mount. If we do want to factor in just his numerical stats then he's not beating Jill statistically at that point in the game certainly, and a trained Marcia is going to be close especially if she's given the energy drop. Kieran might not be too far off either, and several other units are probably only lacking in a few points of str. Conveniently enough better weapons fix that disparity. I'm not going to say that Stephan is outright bad; he can provide some utility, but he certainly isn't great. The discussion only really flips on maniac mode where things are significantly different.

I want to emphasize my point here. It is an argument that growth units are better than prepromoted units. If Jill, Marcia, Kieran, Astrid, etc, etc are better than Stefan it is an argument in favor of growth units being better than prepromoted units. The classes might be unbalanced, but if you ignore the class labels and just look at the numbers Stefan is a 6 move unit (without canto) and is worse than the growths units they give you just because of that.

Like I said, that's just critizising the game's class imbalance. Because Stefan, when judged against his actual peers, is going to be a far better swordsmaster than Mia will ever be. And yes, I think he will be significantly better than most of the units in the game will be at that point. You can cherry pick the absolute best units the game has to offer, but that's also ignoring the majority of the cast.

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But that's just not true, because the prepromotes the game gives you are very good.

It gives you exactly two really good prepromotes. We discussed Haar earlier, but just because his stats are similar to Jill it doesn't make him very good. He joins far too late, and availability matters when evaluating how good a unit can be.

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Because Stefan, when judged against his actual peers, is going to be a far better swordsmaster than Mia will ever be. And yes, I think he will be significantly better than most of the units in the game will be at that point. You can cherry pick the absolute best units the game has to offer, but that's also ignoring the majority of the cast.

His actual peers are any other unit that we'd consider for combat. It's not just relegated to swordmasters; we aren't considering one swordmaster to another for a deployment slot as an example. If he's significantly better than most units in the game can you give me some examples? I left out some units that he's worse than, so I could name several more, and I don't think it's a particularly strong argument to say that he's much better than half of the cast therefore he's a good prepromote.

Edited by samthedigital

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