Major Rebalancing Overview
Hi guys, and thank you for checking out our article, where we walk you through the upcoming major rebalancing.
We’ve been waiting for quite a while for these changes (especially the buffs to underused 5⭐ Heroes like Basar, Lilibet, Yuna, etc.)
So without further ado, we’ll show the buffs/nerfs and give you our opinion on what they’ll do to the meta in PvE/PvP.
Mage Speed Changes
|Hero||+4 Speed||+5 Speed||+6 Speed|
While an increase of 4-6 Spd may not seem like much, it is enough for any Mage above 103-108 Spd to outstrip the fastest Soul Weavers, making certain Heroes much better at their roles.
Basar got a noticeable improvement as his higher Speed will allow him to apply Unbuffable/CR Decrease before enemy Soul Weavers can go. Being tied with Tamarinne in terms of speed can allow him to sabotage efforts by Iseria to sync the Tamaseria speed combo.
Tenebria is a better opener due to being a little faster and being able to apply her AoE DEF break sooner, a role in which base speed is very important.
Luluca got a nice 5 speed bonus, making it easier to gear her, since she sometimes runs an ATK set instead of the default Speed set. It especially helps her to do her job in Wyvern better, given the Wyvern’s high Speed and capability of lapping slower Heroes.
Ludwig’s new base speed of 112 makes him the 4th fastest mage, pushing him above major nuisances like Hurado and tying him with Auxiliary Lots. He is also noticeably faster than Silver Blade Aramintha, allowing him to possibly KO her before her turn arrives. He is unfortunately still slower than Sage Baal, though the gap is much smaller now (base 3 Speed difference)
Challenger Dominiel appreciates any buffs to her base speed, as it improves her turn cycling immensely, allowing her to rotate her DPT quicker. (Just because you can use her as a slow Hero for higher spike damage doesn’t mean that you have to - her DPT increases as she gets faster, even if her 1-turn spike may occasionally suffer from attacking prematurely.)
While this is by no means an extensive list of the new interactions with base Speed, it is an indicator of how much a little extra base Speed can help a Hero.
Skill Changes - 5⭐Ice/Wind/Fire Heroes
Lilibet - S2 gains 50% damage and 50% CR boost; S3 gains 11% damage and the Lidica treatment, granting herself Skill Nullifier
While the buffs don’t change the fact that Lilibet is still slower than some of her major targets (read: Arbiter Vildred), they do help her significantly in other areas. The 50% CR gain and damage increase allows her to do more damage and reduces her downtime significantly. The damage bonus on her S3 allows her to deal slightly more damage to targets, reducing the KO threshold.
Overall, Lilibet gets some staying power and damage increases out of these buffs. S3 still has a long cooldown, however, and she still won’t be going before a lot of priority threats. But at least she does her job better.
S2 gains ATK Down debuff for 2 turns. S3 gains a 30% CR knockback on the entire enemy team. S1 gains a random debuff for 2 turns.
Additionally, Basar's S3 can now be Soulburned instead of his S2 to completely ignore EFFR%. (Thank you /u/sadlifestrife for picking this up; I'd forgotten to add it to the changelog bit.)
Basar’s overall utility has greatly increased. While his ratios are still horrid (.9 on S2 AND S3), he is now a slightly slower Earth version of Dizzy, combining the potent package of Blind and Attack Down on his S3. In addition, he inflicts a random debuff at 100% on his S1 (think Sira-Ren, but amazing!)
When compared to fellow mage Dizzy, you can see the following pros/cons:
- Unique Unbuffable + Full Dispel on S3, with 30% CR knockback
- S1 Debuff Transfer/Guaranteed Random Debuff
- Soul-heavy but guaranteed new Soulburn that will work with S3
- Still hurt badly by Blind/Miss
- Slightly slower
- Doesn’t CR knockback as hard
- S2 is only 75% max effect chance
- Damage is lower because of poor ratios, despite his excellent attack
S2 Dispels 1 buff before inflicting Silence and deals 50% more damage - chance to Silence significantly increased to 85% (thank you to /u/Zelandias for catching this; 1 turn CD reduction as well. S3 dispels buffs before stunning (but after damage).
S2 is much more reliable as a CC tool now. It gives a constant self-buff of ATK/Spd up. While of average base speed for a Warrior, Yufine’s S2 on a 3-turn cooldown with molagora investment means that she has her buffs constantly now, and effectively has 30% more Speed.
S3 is also much more reliable, as it will strip all the buffs from the target before inflicting the stun. Do note that while it dispels before the stun, it does NOT dispel before doing damage (as far as we can tell), so it can still MISS the dispel. In addition, DEF buffs, EVA buffs, and Shield buffs will all hurt her overall damage output.
Overall, Yufine is now self-sufficient for all content that doesn’t involve fire enemies, and much better at first-turning in PvP to eliminate priority targets (or at least decommissioning them for a turn).
S1 gives the entire team 2% CR per target. S2 gives 2 Focus and has -1 CD. S3 now always crits.
For a free hero, Yuna is now incredibly solid in the support role.
Speed buffs are few and far between, and Yuna is now one of, if not the, best Speed buffer in the game, with her ability to keep it AND the ATK buff up constantly.
Combined with her above average base Speed of 112, she will turn cycle incredibly fast.
The S3 guaranteed critical doesn’t improve her damage ceiling, but it DOES raise her damage floor considerably. You can consider ditching all crit chance on her and investing in full ATK substats, though I’m not sure if I want to recommend this.
Additionally, Yuna’s S1 has no cooldown and boosts teamwide CR by 8% on a full team attack. This is pretty significant over a long battle and opens up the option of having her be a CR push opener (though probably still not as good as a dedicated pusher). She is, however, a good CR pusher for subsequent turns.
Yuna will probably shine more in PvE than in PvP. With her self-sufficient boosts, she will be an excellent dog walker.
S2 gains 14% damage. S3 gains 50% stun chance.
(Thank you /u/TastyWatermelons for picking up that it was S2, not S1).
Aramintha's damage on her S2 was improved, but honestly, it was her other skills that could have used the % damage upgrade. Her S2 modifier was low to begin with at .7, and while it is nice to have, is still reliant on an enemy being burned to do any damage at all, AND she spends a turn using it. Her S3 now has a nifty chance to stun, but I am hesitant to say that the 50% max stun chance is a good thing, even on an AoE, as it’s simply unreliable.
No changes were made to her S2, and she is still reliant on the enemy being burned, which is a shame.
S2 now dispels 1 buff, and S3 inflicts Unhealable (apparently obligatory for Fire heroes; who knew?)
Lidica got QoL buffs that affect her ability to freely use her S2. While she was already a fairly strong Hero to begin with, the added utility makes her better, especially in Hunts. With her high speed, she becomes a decent option for removing Azimanak Hunt’s Berserk buff.
In addition, she is now even better at deleting Golem, with her ability to both remove his buffs and keep him in Unhealable status. She can help you to almost ignore his adds and her auto AI will focus him anyways, so this is a great buff for her.
5⭐Light/Dark Heroes (AKA Nerfs)
Overall, the nerfs weren't too bad, and the ML5⭐s weren't completely gutted. I've listed out important changes below.
Silver Blade Aramintha -
S1 lost 10% CR gain on burning an enemy (30% to 20%). S3 lost a 50% chance to apply a single stack of Burning, and has 1 additional turn of cooldown (3 chances to 2 instead; 4 turns CD becomes 5).
This nerf is plainly aimed at reducing Aramintha’s overall damage, but she remains a fast and damaging threat.
The nerf to her CR gain, while significant (it’s 10% CR every turn that she would have used S1), doesn’t gut her too badly, as she is still quite speedy. If anything, it puts her in line with new kid on the block, Vivian, whose S1 gives her 20% CR IF she crits, and doesn’t do damage to the whole enemy team, either.
The nerf to her burn chance directly affects her turn 1 damage output in PvP, but not enough to dissuade her from being an opener - she still maintains her above-average base speed and 100% stun chance (which is not as bad as it seems, even with the other mage speed increases; SB Aramintha WANTS to go after her the stripper on her team. S̶h̶e̶ ̶j̶u̶s̶t̶ ̶l̶o̶v̶e̶s̶ ̶w̶a̶t̶c̶h̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶H̶u̶r̶a̶d̶o̶.)
Arbiter Vildred -
No longer gains ATK buff from S2 after reviving; retains base damage buffs, 100% CR gain, 70% revive HP, and full Focus mechanic.
Smilegate simply reverted a portion of the buff that they gave Arbiter Vildred. Despite gaining his free turn, he will deal significantly reduced damage as he will not have the free ATK buff after revive.
However, he is still fast, keeps the potent damage buffs that they gave him, and is still a very strong DPS threat. Don’t go into him blindly and expect to win unless you have an Extra Turn, because he will absolutely still hurt, a lot.
Sage Baal & Sezan -
CR Gain on S2 down 5% (25% to 20%). S2 only strips 1 buff instead of 2, and has 1 additional turn of cooldown (3 turns became 4 turns).
Sage Baal was hit but not hard enough to completely gut his kit. While he struggles with certain niche teams now due to the fact that his S2 strips the left-most buff and debuff Immunity may still be there after his strip, he is still quite potent as an opener; what was hurt was his consistency, as he now no longer gains as much CR from his S2, and the cooldown for it is longer, making it much more ‘expensive’ to use, as he won’t be getting it back quickly.
In terms of specific interactions, Sage Baal will now struggle against teams that can put up multiple buffs before he can act, as 1 of the new buffs will be removed when he dispels instead of Debuff Immunity.
This means that he is countered in a significant way by a few of the following heroes:
- Fallen Cecilia (her passive activates before anything else in battle)
- Righteous Thief Roozid - Faster than Baal; gives teamwide Speed buff
- Silk - Same as Roozid above
And honestly? I think that’s about it. (Remind me if I missed anyone). This hurts him a bit overall but introduces some counterplay to his S2, which previously had little to no interaction with other heroes.
3-4⭐ Light/Dark Heroes
Assassin Coli -
S1 received a Speed Buff for 1 turn and a 12% base damage increase. Bonus damage while stealthed was increased by 9%. S3 cooldown decreased by 1 turn (5 turns to 4 turns).
These buffs increase her power in her off turns by improving her damage from ‘average’ to ‘somewhat above average’. Additionally, the reduction in cooldown on her S3, while not amazing for PvP, gives her more potential to be used in other types of content. Assassin Coli’s overall identity, however, remains unchanged - she is still excellent at sniping a single target, though not necessarily better at it. These buffs serve to make her more well-rounded.
S2 AoE damage reduction increase (20% to 30%). S3 additionally silences for TWO turns.
Otillie’s focus as the premier AoE damage reducer is improved greatly, to CArmin (pre-nerf) levels of damage reduction. In addition, her S3 now silences for two entire turns AND retains her 40% CR knockback. Otillie is now a good unit to have go second, after the debuff immunity stripper (
M̶m̶m̶m̶,̶ ̶H̶u̶r̶a̶d̶o̶...) - she can do this thanks to her above-average base Speed of 110.
Previously a meme, she can now contribute to the team in terms of damage reduction and crippling the enemy, even if her damage and health is poor. Speaking of health… better hope nothing more than a light breeze hits her @[email protected];
S2 gives 70% passive Crit Resistance. S3 received 29% increased damage and a 2-turn guaranteed DEF break.
Gunther got the Axe God treatment. He has a 2-turn DEF break on a 3-turn cooldown and is SIGNIFICANTLY beefier due to his new passive granting him resistance to the most common damage type in the game. We expect that this Crit Resistance will stack with Diene’s Crit Resistance buff, though this is just speculation.
In addition, he now hits almost 30% harder with his S3 (the damage before was deceiving due to his inability to crit.)
He unfortunately still has no way to draw attacks to himself, and you should pray to Diche that you don’t have to use his awful S1. It’s still garbage.
Crimson Armin -
S2 lost half the damage reduction value (from 30% to 15%). Additionally, S3 lost 1 turn of Debuff Immunity. Thankfully, as far as we can tell from the Dev Notes, they did NOT decide to follow through with the S3 CD increase, which would have decreased her efficacy even further.
Poor kitty. *sniff*
All things considered, she is still a viable source of damage reduction on your team, and her ability to make your entire team invincible is still unique and valuable. While things that hit you won’t be quite as wet-noodly as before, they will still hurt significantly less, especially when considering other defensive buffs, etc., which factor into this multiplicatively. Just make sure you build some defensive stats on your other heroes now...
...is best girl and I will fight you if you say otherwise.
Kitty Clarissa gets an extra turn (that, face it, she should have had originally, just like Tamarinne’s Idol Form change) after using S3 to transform. Seriously, haven’t they heard of “Transformation is a Free Action”? No? Ok.
Regardless, this greatly improves Kitty Clarissa’s consistency and frees her up to choose between AoE/Dual Attack and dispel/damage. It is effectively also a free turn of cooldown on her S3, which allows her to always have her Loveliness buff up. (I mean, she’s always lovely…)
S2 gains the rare Skill Cooldown -1 effect.
That's it. It doesn’t sound like a whole lot, but Achates is already considered a great healer. This pushes her utility even higher, allowing for clutch cooldown refreshes in the same manner that Dingo does (but without having to bring Dingo, heh).
She now gains significant synergy with any hero who has a badly spaced cooldown of 1 turn or more by improving their consistency. This buff is a plain but effective one, giving her an identity that she previously lacked. Before, she was just ‘slightly faster Destina’. Now, she’s ‘slightly faster Destina with a nice cooldown reduction’, which, while plain-sounding, is actually great. No word out yet whether her S2 CD reduction applies to herself.
S2 chances increased to 100% each (from 50%). Additionally, DEF+ for self duration increased by 1 turn. S3 now has a passive attached to it; when on cooldown, entire team takes 10% less damage.
It feels almost like they took everything that Crimson Armin lost and gave it to regular Armin instead. While she still has extremely low base Speed, her cooldown on S2 was decreased so that the benefits/debuffs are active constantly, and her consistency has increased immensely. Blind is an extremely strong debuff, as is poison, and having them up all the time is just what she needed. Her S3 also has a brand new passive that benefits the team even when she’s not doing anything, which is very helpful for a slow hero.
Overall, Armin now takes the primary tank role IN PVE very handily (she’s far too slow for PvP), as her DEF value is still sky-high (second only to Ruele) and she can feel free to stack her DEF as high as it will go, since her new passive will keep the team protected. And hey, she’s still one of the only def-scaling heroes in the game.
Purrgis’ S1 gained self-health scaling, as did his S3. His S2 has a chance to stun on his AoE counterattack (15%), and his S3 has increased stun chance (from 30% to 50%), and the conditional modifier for the enemy’s HP levels (<30%) takes the stun to 100% when they are low.
I unfortunately can’t pass judgment on Purrgis’ upgraded kit yet, as we don’t know how much he scales with his max HP. We expect that Smilegate will release new numbers closer to the actual release date. I can, however, comment on his S2/3 stun chance. S3 makes for a somewhat useful stun, but given his low speed, I can only assume that they want him to be very bulky and start racking up damage with counterattacks instead of opening fights with his S3 - especially given his <30% HP requirement.
We’ll know more about his future when they give us the actual HP scaling.
Crozet’s S3 now has a 75% chance to provoke for 1 turn, and the cooldown was lowered by 1 turn (5 to 4). His S2 now procs EVERY turn instead of every OTHER turn.
While very tanky and hard to kill (that’s not an overstatement; Crozet has the 5th highest HP and 8th highest defense of any hero), Crozet has often failed to draw attention to himself. His new ability to provoke does help him in this scenario, but the provoke only lasts 1 turn. In addition, his Speed and Attack values are abysmal (at least bottom 20 in each category), and his new provoke does nothing against bosses (Wyvern), where he is better off using his S1. This is strictly an attempt at a PvP upgrade, though I am skeptical. It could be VERY good for a turn 2 team, however.
He more than makes up for his inability to affect bosses with his S3 with the massive buff to his auto-barrier/DEF+ on S2. He can now proc it once per turn instead of every two turns, greatly increasing any party member’s survivability against high single-target damage. It also makes him even better at tanking Wyvern than he already was and, given his Connections hero status, even better for Wyvern 1-10, where random teammates face the Wyvern’s wrath.
Silly theorycraft: he’ll be pretty good on teams with Otillie, as he can now protect her or any other teammate from being spiked too hard. We may expect to see him on longevity-based defensive teams in the near future. His provoke/CD delay is very good for such teams, if you can get over his low base SPD. In addition, the new Noble Oath seems to be fairly strong on him, as his damage gets higher based on his defense.
Artifact Changes Review:
Justice for All
Justice for All has gone through some significant improvements, as the buffs now last 2 turns instead of 1, making it a much less chancy gamble that you’ll get a useful buff. However, the random nature of this artifact is still unlikely to change, so only use it if you’re feeling lucky. At least all the buffs are good.
Alexa’s pic-a-nic basket features some better cooking, being 200% more scrumptious. As a result, the boost to the user is IMMEDIATE at the start of the turn, instead of proccing afterward. The sugar rush is so volatile that the wearer gets a GREATER Attack buff instead of a normal one. Unfortunately, Yogi Bear happens to get his hands on the basket more often than not, as there’s a 60% chance he will steal the basket and you will get nothing :/
TL;DR - there is now a 40% chance to get Greater ATK+ and CritC Up at the beginning of the hero’s turn.
Violet’s Talisman features those new, juicier apples that he’s been eating. As a result, the Talisman charges 3 times as fast (Apples must be super red!) Attack/Evasion increases by up to 10% per turn, capping out at the same limit of 30%. However, it greatly benefits heroes like A. Vildred or any thieves with an extra turn baked into their kit. Mmm, baked apples.
Maximum value for Noble Oath increased to 100% bonus DEF/EFFR%.
While Noble Oath got the plainest upgrade, it was significantly boosted, allowing tanks to turtle at low health percentages for significantly longer than before. Unfortunately, it still faces VERY stiff competition from Sword of Ezera and Proof of Valor, which are incredibly strong defensive artifacts.
Things to remember about Noble Oath
- The value scales with HP thresholds
- It does not proc on attacks that have already taken place, even if they visually appear to multi-hit
- It's decent against Vivian/Extra turns, since those count as entirely new instances of attack
At least it's no longer a meme.