May 2018 Character Rebalance first impressions


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As usual, I’ll be giving some of my insights about the latest patch rebalance, getting a feel for which character got helped the most through it and which characters did not. Reminder that those are some really early assessments, so I can’t guarantee they will be completely accurate.

Details will be added as we gather more info and testing. Some of the values given might be approximative, please refer to the wiki in the future for exact values.

See you at the next rebalance

Chat Noir : Here’s a riddle : Two thieves characters in a certain JRPG mobage game need a rebalance, but only one can get a good one, who ends up stealing the spot? Answer : Not Chat Noir… He’s kind of a regular in those rankings by now, and probably the only character to have been rebalanced thrice, and who is still pretty mediocre. Despite needing a complete overhaul of his kit, Cygames keeps trying to adjust his numbers only, without really fixing any of his fundamental flaw. As of now, Chat Noir will gain 20% spec mod ATK on forewarning, and his Riddle buff seems to be quite strong in terms of DA/TA. His ougi doesn’t have delay anymore, which is a welcome change, and that allows him to fall in line with the characters with ougi additional nuke since he can deal an additional 700k right after his ougi with foreshadowing. Other than that, his debuffs are still random, and not really that necessary or important, and his self buffs are still not enough to justify bringing him on the front line.

H.Cagliostro : Her buff is still super weak, but at least it’s on a better CD now. And the stacking def down will at least not conflict with breach anymore. But other than that, her buffs feel extremely underwhelming, especially when compared to what other seasonal characters got.

S.Danua : A character that provides defensive debuffs and sustain in an element like Dark while sacrificing Damage has little reason to shine most of the time. The additional utility she gets will most of the time be ignored by players looking for more damage.

Respectable changes

S.Zeta : She is now very similar to her Fire version, except that she can at least guarantee a TA on her anytime assassin (and actually has a self ATK buff). That doesn’t really mean you’ll want to slot her in all your teams, but she does feel better to use and has her own niche.

H.Eustace : He finally got rid of that crippling weakness that made him unable to attack if you were unfortunate enough to reach 10 loaded stacks before his ougi. The penalty is instead one turn of self-para, and 5 loaded stacks loss, which is much more bearable. His ougi becoming local is also a plus, since you wouldn’t have the chance to take more than two turns usually with his old para, and it’s also now more accurate.

Vajra : She also got some much needed change, making her at least now usable but still relatively in an awkward position. The fix on her third skill, reducing the cooldown to 9 turns and the meter cost to 30% makes her a better DPS option than she was before. Her buffs now ramp up with the number of ougis she ends up doing, which overall makes more sense and doesn’t center her gameplay around chain burst, which was nonsensical in an element like water. With each ougi, her buffs will gain an additional effect : 30% ATK / 30% DEF / 10% meter generation / 30% ougi damage / 10% damage cap up ; all in that order. She has a great synergy with your favorite fish FLB summon, allowing you to start right away with two bonuses. The buffs have an extremely high duration of 6 turns and undispellable, making it very easy to upkeep permanently. Her meter generation is also improved through a bonus +10% meter for each chain burst level (up to 40% with an overburst). Finally, her first skill now has a 200% base success rate (understand : she will always land it), which makes the skill slightly less worthless (but still quite useless in general). Despite all the changes, most players will regret the fact that her ATK buff is normal mod, and that her own dps remains painfully low, only allowing her to shine with truly stacked whale grids to make a big difference.

Black Knight : Not a huge change to her kit, but still a welcome addition, as she gets now a similar enmity passive as Dark Jeanne, increasing her ATK as her HP lowers. Note that the passive is slightly different from DJeanne though, as BK passive works with thresholds : 0% / 15% / 30% / 45% ATK up whenever BK goes under 100% / 75% / 50% / 25% HP respectively. Add to that a new Garrison passive, increasing your DEF as HP decrease (up to 80%), an increased hostility, and 10% increased base HP and 20% increased base DEF; it all makes BK a pretty good tank. Unfortunately, the utility she provides gets outshined by Six 5* (Fear) and Olivia (Slow) making her only truly desirable if you need the utility she provides all at once (or if you don’t have other units).

Satisfying buffs

Aliza : The substitute effect she gets is a very welcome change that pretty much guarantees her to proc high damage counter when used with her cap up. Her ATK up being undispellable and indefinite is also a nice improvement, although it still takes a bit of time to ramp up. Finally, the stackable DA up upon getting targeted is a great change considering shields and blinds are a common thing, and the stackable part assures you a good uptime on it.

Ghanda : He becomes a good candidate to Fist fire teams, thanks to his passive that will grant DA to any fist character. His blind becomes a local debuff, and he has now a counter + retaliation, although he doesn’t have any hostility boost anymore outside of his EMP to proc them reliably anymore. His third skill turns into a DA up / 20% Fire attack up team buff, which is rather weak but has a very good 5 turns uptime. He gets a passive similar to Nemone, for each single attack (ougi and counters included) he inflicts, Ghanda will gain Eternal Rage stacks, granting him 3% ATK up (spe mod?) / 10% ougi damage / 2% ougi cap up per stack, up to 10 stacks. Pairing him with Anila should work pretty well.

Arriet : Our not-Alexiel wind redhead girl gets a good upgrade, with added effects to her skills, starting with a double strike on her CD reduction, which can be quite handy for bursty characters or for one turn Lecia memes. But the more important upgrade is her getting a literal Miserable Mist on her third skill, which can be very handy if you don’t want to be stuck using Mist on your MC. Her second skill gets a one turn CD cut, making its uptime more respectable as well.

Petra : She finally gains an on ougi effect, and a pretty good one since it’s a Wind allies crit buff (a la Altair and Seruel), 60% (?) to deal 20% more damage to the team, a buff that wind should have no trouble sustain through all their ougis. She gets also a 10% wind def down that is weak, but still useful if you’re stuck with Mist + Def breach and can’t manage to cap def down. Finally, her passive will now grant 20% Wind atk up to wind allies if they are under the effect of Mirror Image, which has the very good taste of getting provided by Tia 4* summon, and is even more valuable in a double Tiamat M2 grid.

Eustace : His rebalance finally got him rid of all the shorted and charge bar eating nonsense that was a real pain in the ass to manage, and now he’s much more straightforward to use. Each of his skill grants a loaded level, up to 5 stacks. With each stack, Eustace will gain increased ATK up (spe mod) / Ougi damage up / Ougi cap up, for a total of 50% ATK up / 200% Ougi damage up / 160% Ougi cap up. That means Eustace can reach Lvl 3 of loaded at turn 1, making him great one turn kill burster coupled with his nukes, and Lvl 5 at turn 6. His second skill got changed to a team crit buff, 45% chance to deal 50% damage for 3 turns, with only 5 turns cooldown, and at the cost of 20% meter. And much like his Halloween version, his para is now two turns local.

S.DLF : Her second skill is now the exact same as her earth counterpart, which has the double advantage of pairing very well with characters like Io or Song, and can also allow you to upkeep nicely Huanglong Katana effect even when at full HP (which was not possible before). The guard effect on ougi (4 turns, ougi turn included) is quite nice, although it will serve Zeus users more than Chev users. Overall, a great upgrade that makes her become the only Sword proficiency character able to upkeep Huanglong Katana. The blind accuracy being increased and her new passive are also welcomed additions, albeit not extremely noticeable ones.

Is that really the same character as before?

S.Percy : Sir Burnsalot in a swimsuit actually becomes a strong unit, possibly stronger than his regular counterpart in most situations. First of all, he finally gets the double nuke after ougi like his regular version. Second, his self buff becomes a guaranteed DA for 3 turns with a 25% fire echo, for only 3 turns of downtime. While not as strong as his regular version buff, his higher uptime on his echo will benefit players with strong grids who will be able to cap auto more easily. His third skill becomes extremely powerful utility wise, making Adoration (the super charm) a 3 turns local debuff (which is arguably better for the player using him), it also grants a busted 25% fire def down that allows your MC to forgo Def breach (generally for Rage or Soul split) and is also of great help for your damage in UBH / UBHL. Also adoration now has a 100% base success rate because “why not?”, meaning that landing it more than once shouldn’t be too difficult. Finally, he also gets the same increase to Fire ATK up bonus as his regular version, only that he won’t be able to activate it himself. But fire has fortunately for him a lot of characters with Fire attack up buffs, so it shouldn’t be too much of an issue.

S.Io : From trash queen to “Hey, I can actually use this character!”, Io can now have a spot in a lot of fire teams, especially the fire Staff ones. She gains the ability to grant team crit on ougi to fire allies (60% chance to deal 20% more damage), stacking with flaretato crit buff. Her first nuke becomes an AoE, and her second nuke now casts burn on enemies. Her third skill finally stops being worthless, and becomes a single target buff like DLF, heals and grant 30% Fire ATK up + 30% fire echo for 4 turns, on a 5 turns CD. The echo doesn’t seem to stack with Yuel however. Her new passives are both pretty big as well, Io will gain 30% ougi damage + 10% ougi damage cap against burned enemies (which she can cast herself), and she will reduce team damage by 20% similarly to Nio, which is actually a lot. So now, both Io’s versions are good, it only took a few years to happen!

Catherine : Before that update, Catherine was pretty much a charm bot, whose sole role was to cast entice on the enemy, and it was impossible to actually make use of her Assassin skill as it would consume Entice. Now, the two debuffs are actually separate, and Entice is just a regular debuff on its own, that can be cast directly on the enemy. It remains global and still stacks with charm, which is great, and will not needlessly build up Charm resistance anymore to cast entice. Casting it will also put another local debuff assassin mark for 3 turns on the enemy that you will consume on your third skill to get an anytime assassin. Talking about her assassin, Catherine now has a way to guarantee a TA on it thanks to her ougi that grants her a sure TA as an effect. It requires a bit of timing, but it can make for some really explosive burst on some rather short cooldown since you can reapply the mark and the assassin every 6 turns. While she loses her ability to apply regular charm on the enemy, Catherine gets instead a Delay-meter steal a la Vampy, stealing on diamond charge for 30% meter. Even if the ability fails, Catherine will still gain an Ougi DMG up self buff for the next ougi. This Catherine (but also Eustace) buff opens the door to some numerous powerful Ultima gun teams in earth, even though not meta shattering (Sword still reigns supreme), it adds some very welcomed diversity.

Amira : She is perhaps one of the surprise of this patch, as no one expected much from the change she was getting on the patchnote, but it ended up turning much better than anticipated in practice. First of all, Amira is now able to transform on turn 1 nearly all the time. Her second skill now drains 10% on the enemy and 5% per member, and will grant the quadruple of the total as charge bar to Amira. Which means a total of 25% x 4 = 100% meter in most situations. Plus, she also gets an Ougi damage buff on next C.A, so you can pretty much see her second skill as an ignition. You can keep Amira’s transformation up permanently thanks to that. Talking about her transformation, the bonus she gets in them have been improved by a lot. She now has guaranteed DA, +10% TA, +30% ATK up (special mod), +30% DEF up, one guaranteed counter on damage per turn, 50% dark echo (unboosted by grid, which means most of the time it will be a very low amount). The special mod on her ATK up makes her hits extremely hard, especially if you manage to also accumulate her EMP stackable ATK up. Finally, her first skill is now a 30% DA + 15% TA up buff, still on a very good uptime thanks to her cooldown reduction on ougi, and god knows how nearly every light unit actually needs her meter generation buff. She has overall become a very good unit in light that can ignore Ultima proficiency thanks to her transformation bonus, making her finally worthy of her 5* status.

Did someone say C O R E ?

Lucio_SDB (1)

Lucio : Although it wasn’t really a big change in itself, sword proficiency is really what Lucio lacked to make it to core member in sword teams. The extra DA/TA, the additional stats from a full chev sword grid are actually really helpful and help him regain a good amount of luster as an attacker. Now Cygames, it’s Jeanne’s turn please.

Funf : Funf changes are kinda symptomatic of a new trend that Cygames implemented recently : Healers now have to be Buffers as well, or they are worthless, which is a pretty spot on observation. As such, Funf now becomes one of the best Light buffer, if not THE best if you decide to use a staff ultima team. First of all, her first skill heal now also grants a 20% Stamina buff for 3 turns (not stacking with Io however), on a ridiculous 3/5 turns uptime. Funf’s first skill is really stacked, as it will just by itself : Heal your time 4k HP (before heal EMP) / Grant 3 turns Revitalize / Grant 3 turns Stamina / Proc Huanglong Katana, all on a 5 turns cooldown. Her third skill gets one hell of an upgrade as well, becoming a “super DLF buff”, mono target buff that will grant 30% ATK up (spe mod) / 50% Def up / 15% DA / 10% TA / Auto resurrection to one member for 15 turns on a 16 turns CD. While it’s not able to grant auto resurrection to your whole team anymore after 30 turns, it’s now a much more convenient skill that actually buffs an ally by a fair bit, and a very “press and forget” button which every player in GBF appreciate. And making it undispellable makes the resurrection relevant in the one raid where you actually need it most of the time : UBHL. Now if only Cygames could make her voice not shatter our eardrums everytime she talks, now that would be the true QoL buff remaining she needs.

Six : Do you know what is the definition of “Overkill”? Well, I think Six’s rebalance could fit under that description : going from a very powerful but somehow slightly awkward dark attacker to a weapon of mass destruction ready to slaughter your moms, wives, daughters and puppies. His most important flaws were fixed during this update, namely the fact that his third skill buff Gate of Demons was removable through white damage, and that his Gate of Sins first buff could get dispelled. It is now no longer the case, which is already a huge QoL improvement in itself, especially the fact that his first skill stacks are now permanent (no more clicky-clicky every 4 turns to refresh the buff), the self clear on it is a nice addition too but not necessarily always needed. A less expected benefit is that the removal of his hostility down is actually quite nice to soak damage to your team as well (or not make your MC tank every Sirius hit). His ultimate skill was also buffed to relevancy, making it a 4 turns dodge + Double Strike, which was also a needed buff to make him worthy of the title of Eternal (although when you couple it with the recent Parazonium FLB effect, it might already feel like a bit too much). But where it starts to get completely crazy, is when FKHR decides that it’s still not enough and that Six needs to have 30% echo whenever under the effect of mirror image, because damn it he’s supposed to be the best attacker in the game, and he just beat the shit out of Ayer in the story event, so he should at least hit as hard as him. And because it’s still not enough and he’s supposed to be an Edgelord, he now has a local 2 turns Fear on ougi, which might not be vital, but is still quite appreciated when you want to tempo an enemy (RIP Black Knight and S.Danua), and now you can’t argue anymore that “Six brings no utility”. So yeah, Six claimed his throne as “King of Dark”, and arguably as well as “King of Attackers”. And he’s probably gonna stay there for a long time, unless a substantial meta shift happens. And even if that were to happen, he’ll probably be buffed again…

9 thoughts on “May 2018 Character Rebalance first impressions

  1. Arriet’s Philantropy doesn’t work with 1 cd skill, such as siete so it won’t work with lecia 3rd skill. Pretty niche :((


    1. it’s work dude
      because her skill 3 is exception for arriet skill 1

      you can still reduce it so after use her skill 3 to instantly recast


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