Copyright 2010 Jeffrey Russell firstname.lastname@example.org Version History 4/23/2010 (v 1.0) - completed and sent in to GFAQs 4/28/2010 (v 1.01) - Neoseeker can now use this guide. 5/7/2010 (v 1.02) - SuperCheats can now use this guide. 6/10/2010 (v 1.1) - first major update. After hearing some suggestions, I finally broke down and made a section of character scores. I still don't think that's a good way to judge characters, but I decided it would be nice to have the duality of in-depth quality assessments and quick, generalized overviews so the reader can choose which they care to read. 6/10/2010 again (v 1.11) - Made a fix in some character's scores to adjust for finding items - it's based on skill, not luck like I thought it was. Thanks to Zakaerys for pointing that out. 1.Intro [1NT] 2.Terminology [T3RM] 3.CEXP vs. BEXP [3XP] 4.Data Transfer [D4T4] 5.The characters [CH4R] 6. Opinions and Ratings [B1AS] 7.Supports & Affinities [4FF] 8.The SS Weapons [ZOMG55] 9.Hypothetical Questions 'n' Answers [QW3ST] 10.Outro and Contact Info [0UT] 7979797979797979797979797979797979797979797979797979797979797979797979797979797 While it's not completely drenched in them, please bear in mind that this guide does contain spoilers. These are mostly limited to character names, but even knowing if a character is alive/recruitable could be considered a spoiler. So yeah. Intro [1NT] Hello and welcome to my character FAQ for Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn! Before we get started, let me get something straight. You will not completely agree with this FAQ. (probably) I mean, let's face it. When it comes down to it, this is a random game. Just because I say Rhys has awful defense doesn't magically prohibit you from getting a Rhys who gains +def every level until he caps it. Just because I say Sanaki has high luck doesn't mean that you won't get a file where she never ever gains a point in it. And as a natural correlation, just because I say that a character is good or bad doesn't mean you will feel the same way. On a similar note, there are many ways of playing the game. How I play is likely different from how you play. The fact that Sothe is an EXP hog doesn't bother me, but you might hate him forever for it; the fact that Fiona has poor earlygame performance is a significant problem to me, but might not be to you. I will do what I can to try to point out character's pros and cons in an objective manner, but if you think I'm bashing a character for something they don't deserve or praising them for something that's not true, then I understand, and am willing to listen to your opinion if you care enough to e-mail me. Now then, let me make something else clear; any character can be useful in some way or another if you put the effort into them. Whether or not it's worth the effort is up to you. Some are only useful for a certain arc of the game, some require a ton of training, some have a poor endgame, some have a combination of the above. But what I guess I want to say here is even if I have nothing good to say about a character, if you want to use them, use them. Some might make the game harder than it really needs to be, but there's little point in making the game easier if you are going to enjoy it less. Of course, if you want to use an entire team of characters that I or others deem bad, then you might want to reconsider, but when it comes down to it, you should use who you want to use. So, with all that said, let's move on to the guide! Terminology [T3RM] There are a lot of terms to be familiar with in Fire Emblem. FE:RD – Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn FE:PoR – Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance GM – Greil Mercenary/ies. The group of characters with Ike. DB – Dawn Brigade. The group of characters with Micaiah. CRK – Crimean Royal Knight. Consists of Goeffrey, Kieran, Makalov, Astrid, Danved, Marcia, and Calill. LEA – Laguz Emancipation Army (or is it Alliance? I forget). Consists of Tormod, Muarim, and Vika. Stats... HP: Hit Points. Enemy attacks will lower this value. When this value hits 0, the character will retreat or die, depending on their plot relevance. In either case, they will become unusable for the rest of the game, and any items or skills they had are gone forever (most of the time, anyway...). Can be increased by 7 points with a Seraph Robe. Strength (Str): Determines how much damage physical attacks do. Also note that if a character's strength is lower than their weapon's weight, they will lose speed equal to the difference between the two. So if Nolan has 12 strength and is wielding a weapon with 15 wt, he will lose 15-12 = 3 speed. Can be increased by 2 points with an Energy Drop. Magic (Mag): Determines how much damage magical attacks do. Also decides how much HP Imbue can recover for str-based units. Can be increased by 2 points with a Spirit Dust. Skill (Skl): Increases accuracy. Many skills also have activation rates based on skill (no, really?) Also increases the odds of scoring critical hits. Can be increased by 2 points with a Secret Book. Speed (Spd): Increases evasion. Also, having 4 or more speed than your opponent will allow you to attack twice in one round, and vice versa (bear in mind this is after the speed deduction mentioned in the strength description). Note that some skill activation rates are based on speed. Can be increased by 2 points with a Speedwing. Luck: Has slight impact on accuracy and evasion. Also determines crit evasion. Impacts a few skills as well. Can be increased by 2 points with an Ashera Icon. Note that Luck does NOT impact how often a character criticals enemies. Defense (Def): Determines how much damage you take from physical attacks. Can be increased by 2 points with a Dracoshield. Resistance (Res): Determines how much damage you take from magic attacks, as well as the odds of being hit by a status effect. Can be increased by 2 points with a Talisman. Constitution (Con): Affects shoving. Pretty irrelevant. Can be increased by 2 points with a Statue Frag. Move: The amount of squares a unit can move per turn. Can be increased by 2 points with Boots or by using the Celerity skill. Other terms... RNG: Random Number Generator. Determines, like, freaking everything. RNG blessed: When a character gets more of a stat than it seems like they ought to. If Leonardo caps defense by level 20 before promoting, he's RNG blessed. RNG screwed: When a character gets less of a stat than it seems like they ought to. If Edward gets to level 20 without ever gaining HP, he's RNG screwed. Hit: Accuracy. How likely you are to connect with an attack. May also refer to the accuracy bonus a weapon gives. Increased by skill and luck. Display hit: The percentage the game shows you of how likely you are to hit with an attack. True hit: How likely you actually are to hit. In general, if the display hit is above 50, then the true hit is higher than the display hit, and if the display hit is below 50, then the true hit is less than the display hit. Avoid (Avo): A character's ability to evade attacks. Increased by speed and luck. Crit: Can refer either to critical hits, which do three times as much damage as a normal hit, or can refer to a character's likelihood to score a critical hit. Dodge: Critical evasion. Decreases the enemy's chance of scoring critical hits. Increased by luck. Weight (Wt): How heavy a weapon is. A high weight weapon may slow down the character using it if they have low strength. Can also refer to a unit's weight, which affects rescuing and shoving. Rescue: A command that allows one unit to take another off of the field. Doing this will reduce the rescuer's speed and skill by half. A unit can only rescue other units that they have 2 or more weight than who they are rescuing (So a character with 10 wt can rescue a character with 8 wt or less, but not 9 wt or more). Shove: A skill all non-mounted units possess. Allows a unit to shove another character one space, be they ally or enemy. The target must have at most 2 more weight than the shover's Con. Canto: A skill all mounted units and flyers have. Allows the character to use their remaining move points after performing an action. Prf weapon/tome: A weapon that can be used only by one character, such as Thani. These can be used regardless of weapon level. Seige Tome: A tome that has 3-10 range, such as Bolting. Weapon Triangle: An element only present in Easy and Normal mode, the weapon triangle slightly influences damage and accuracy. Swords beat Axes beat Lances beat swords, Lightning>Fire>Wind>Lightning, Dark>Anima>Light>Dark. Bows, Daggers, Staves, and Laguz weapons do not fit into weapon triangles. Weapon Triangle Advantage (WTA): The accuracy bonus (+10) and power bonus (+1) given to a person who's weapon type beats their opponent's. For example, a sword-wielding myrmidon would have the WTA against an axe-wielding fighter. Weapon Triangle Disadvantage (WTD): The accuracy loss (-10) and power loss (-1) suffered by a person who's weapon type loses against their opponent's. For example, a sword-wielding myrmidon would have the WTD against a lance- wielding pegasus knight. Biorhythm: A naturally occurring fluctuation in a character's accuracy, evasion, skill activation rate, and ability to find hidden treasure. Having Best biorhythm increases these by 10, High increases them by 5, Low decreases them by 5, and Worst decreases them by 10. Normal gives no change. Note that there are several biorhythm types, some of which cannot reach Best and Worst. -edit: The effect on finding hidden treasure is actually double that...+20 at best, +10 at good, -10 at bad, -20 at worst. Growth: The odds a character will gain a stat when they level up. For example, Haar has a 30% HP growth, so every time he levels up he has a 30% chance of gaining one hit point. Cap: The highest a character's stat can go. This is primarily dependent on class and gender. For example, Meg as a Marshall has a defense cap of 35, so once she reaches that she cannot continue to gain stats in defense when she levels up. Tier: All Beorc classes can be described as 1st tier, 2nd tier, or 3rd tier. 1st tier classes are the weakest, 3rd tier are the strongest. Reaching level 21 or using a Master Seal after level 10 will promote a character from tier 1 to tier 2: reaching level 21 again or using a Master Crown after level 10 will promote a character from tier 2 to tier 3. The level cap is 20, tier 3. Mastery Skills: Powerful skills that often are the rough equivalent of an I WIN button. Beorc learn these automatically at third tier. Laguz must use a Satori sign at or after level 30 to learn theirs. Beorc: Humans. Progress through three tiers of classes and use weapons they created. Laguz: Shapeshifters. Can reach up to level 40 but do not ever promote. Can use a Satori Sign after level 30 to learn Mastery skills. When they are transformed, their stats are doubled and they can attack; untransformed they can only counterattack. Their transformation is dictated by a gauge; every turn they spend untransformed, the gauge increases, and every turn they spend transformed (and every time they fight) the gauge decreases. Note that some tems can increase the gauge, and being attacked (but not counterattacking) will increase the gauge if the laguz is untransformed. When the gauge hits 30, the laguz can transform; they can untransform at any time. Laguz Royals: Extrapowerful laguz that have a skill called Formshift which allows them to be transformed at all times without any penalty. Nailah, Naesala Tibarn, and Caineghis are all laguz royals; Giffca is also effectively a royal, since he has comparable stats and joins with a laguz gem. Kurthnaga is also a royal, though he does not get Formshift until the end of 4-E-3. CEXP vs. BEXP [3XP] Characters level a bit differently if they level up with CEXP (combat experience) or BEXP (bonus experience). CEXP levels work almost exactly like they did in every other Fire Emblem. When a character levels up with CEXP each of their individual stats has a certain percent chance of going up. In Radiant Dawn you are guaranteed to get at least one stat every time you level up; the only way to gain no stats at a level up is if they have all capped already. So you essentially can gain 1 to 8 stats per level. BEXP levelups guarantee that you will gain 3 stats per level. EXACTLY 3... no more, no less (unless there are fewer than 3 stats left to gain). This makes it very useful for helping to compensate for character's weak stats. Say, for example, that Nolan is level 20/15. He has capped magic, skill, speed, and resistance. Now, he's only got four stats left to gain (HP, strength luck, and defense). I could continue leveling him normally and hope he gets good stat gains...or I could level him with BEXP and ensure that he gets 3 of the 4 stats he has left! In general, you should wait until the character has capped 3 stats before using BEXP, but in some cases you may want to start earlier or wait longer. (random extra note: I may refer every now and then to SEXP, which besides looking funny is short for Staff Experience, the experience gained from using staves. This is the same as CEXP. Exp gained from Chanting or Sacrifice is also CEXP.) Data Transfer [D4T4] If you played through Path of Radiance and have a file saved on your Gamecube memory card (note that the game save must be Clear Data), you will have the option of transferring the data over to Radiant Dawn. This has a few advantages. Note, however, that there is a major glitch in the system; if you have ANY Easy Mode data on your memory card, then attempting to perform the data transfer will cause Radiant Dawn to crash. So if you want to make a data transfer, play through Path of Radiance on Normal or Hard and make sure there are no Easy Mode files on that card. Most of the RD disks out now should be fixed, but just in case they aren't... Anyway, you get some nice bonuses for the Data Transfer. Any coins you had at the end of Path of Radiance will be put in the Greil Mercenaries' convoy in Radiant Dawn. Characters that got an A support with each other will now have a Bond support in Radiant Dawn. Characters who had at least a C weapon level in a weapon type in Path of Radiance will get a boost to their weapon experience in Radiant Dawn (But only in weapon types that they start off with in Radiant Dawn; for example, even if Brom gets S lances in Path of Radiance, he doesn't start off being able to use lances in Radiant Dawn so no bonus will occur for his lance weapon exp). The most significant bonus, and most relevant to this FAQ, is the stat boosts. Characters who capped a stat in Path of Radiance AND reached max level will get stat boosts in Radiant Dawn. If they capped HP, they will get +5 to their base in Radiant Dawn; all other capped stats get +2 points. Note that they will not break stat caps. So for an example, let's use Gatrie. Let's say I got him to cap HP, strength, and defense in Path of Radiance and got him to level 20 general. When I transfer data, his base strength will be 27 (instead of his normal base of 25), his base defense will be 26 (instead of his normal base of 24) and his base HP will be 45 (instead of his normal base of 44 – he only got 1 point because his HP cap at his initial tier is 45). There are two noteworthy exceptions: Calill and Sothe. Calill gets her own bonuses plus bonuses to whatever Largo capped in Path of Radiance, since he is not a playable character in Radiant Dawn. So if he capped HP, she will get the +5 points to it. However, the bonuses do not stack: if Calill and Largo both capped skill in Path of Radiance, RD Calill still only gets +2 points to it in Radiant Dawn. The other exception is Sothe. If Sothe hit level 20 thief in Path of Radiance, his stats will transfer over exactly as they are. So if he had 20 luck as a level 20 thief in Path of Radiance, he will have 20 luck as a level 1 Rogue in Radiant Dawn. WARNING: his stats will transfer directly even if they are worse than his Radiant Dawn bases! Transfer Sothe at your own risk!...but also bear in mind that, while it will take some effort, you can really improve RD Sothe's stats, especially defense, by pumping Sothe up in Path of Radiance. The characters [CH4R] Micaiah Level 1 Light Mage Dark affinity Base stats 15 HP 2 Str 7 Mag 8 Skl 7 Spd 10 Luck 2 Def 4 Res 5 Con 5 Wt Growths 40% HP 15% Str 80% Mag 40% Skl 35% Spd 80% Luck 20% Def 90% Res Starts with D Light, gains C Staves at 2nd tier. Innate Skills: Sacrifice (allows Micaiah to restore another unit's HP, but she loses that amount. Restores status effects of the target. Micaiah cannot kill herself with this, so if she doesn't have enough HP to fully heal, then she will just heal as much as she can and her HP will fall to 1. This cannot be removed from Micaiah but takes no capacity). How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of the game. Micaiah is one of the main lords of Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn, and as such if she dies you get a game over. Which is a shame, because her durability sucks – poor HP and defense coupled with lackluster evasion, although between her immense luck and her auto-A Sothe support (which gives +15 avo) she can dodge occasionally. Still, a lot of enemies are killing her in one hit, and the ones that aren't may have a shot at double-turning her thanks to her low speed. Basically, the moral here is don't let her get attacked, ever. Well, by physical attackers, anyway...her resistance is incredible (highest beorc res growth in the game), so mages pose no threat to her. Micaiah gets a tome called Thani (two, actually; one in 1-2 from a chest and one in 1-E from a base convo with Fiona) that is very useful for her. Besides being pretty powerful in it's own right, it also does extra damage to enemy horse-mounted units and armored units. Since these tend to be among the more difficult enemies to deal with, this gives Micaiah an offensive edge (and of course she's got a great magic stat on top of that). Sadly, she's pretty much never going to double-turn enemies, but she can really weaken them for other units to sneak in some kills. Once Micaiah promotes to tier 2 at the end of 1-E (she, Sothe, and Ike are the only characters with storyline promotions, by the way), she gains the ability to use staves. This means now she can heal without consuming her own HP which is quite nice. The fact that she can instantly use Physic is great too, so she can heal without having to worry about getting annihilated when an enemy makes eye contact with her. Sadly, her promotion to third tier is extremely late – right before Endgame, actually. She doesn't offer much for combat here, but the fact that she can use staves is still nice and some of the enemies won't attack her at all, so her durability is a bit less of a problem...maybe... Basically, you need to be very careful with her, but her powerful attacks (moreso in part 1) and her ability to heal (moreso after part 1) are pretty nice. She's also one out of two characters that offers an attack boosting support (the other is Leonardo: Tormod does too, but his availability gets in the way) to the DB, so that can be helpful as well. Just keep an eye on the enemies movement ranges and she should be fine. -- Edward Level 4 Myrmidon Light affinity Base stats 19 HP 7 Str 0 Mag 11 Skl 12 Spd 8 Luck 5 Def 0 Res 7 Con 7 Wt Growths 85% HP 60% Str 5% Mag 65% Skl 60% Spd 50% Luck 35% Def 20% Res Starts with D Swords Innate Skills: Wrath (increases critical rating by 50 when HP falls under 30%) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of the game. Ah, Edward, one of the more controversial characters of Radiant Dawn. First of all, let's have a look at those stats. His bases aren't anything special, but 7 str is nice for a level 4 myrmidon and 11 skl/12 spd is cool, too. And his growths are quite good as well – excellent offense with 60% or more in str/skl/spd and 50% luck is nice. He also has one of the highest HP growths in the game, tied for best HP growth among beorc. His defense could be better but it's still okay, and his res and magic suck, but overall those growths are pretty sweet. However, Edward does have a few problems. The Dawn Brigade in general suffers from a lack of durability, and Edward has some of the most significant durability issues early on. While his evasion is good in theory, it's not doing a lot for him at first on account of how accurate enemies (or rather, their weapons) are in the early parts of the game. Since Edward is a frontliner, unlike the other flimsier characters like Micaiah, Leonardo, etc. (who don't generally need to worry about being attacked), this means his durability is an issue for him all the time. Of course, he's good for finishing off pre-weakened enemies, and since he joins alongside two units pretty much designed to pre-weaken enemies, that works out okay for him...but still, he suffers from being one of the flimsier characters at first. He's also one of the weaker characters as far as damage output is concerned, but if he's doubling (which he should be doing fairly regularly on easy and normal modes) then his offense should still be sufficient. And for all my complaining about his general mediocrity at first, he does grow pretty well. He's one of the best Endgame Trueblades, which is a good class to begin with, although he requires a lot more effort to catch up in levels than the others (except maybe Lucia) do. He also gets a unique weapon in 3-6 called Caladbolg, which is quite powerful and gives him an 8 point luck boost. His affinity isn't very good under normal circumstances; however, he and Nolan are a fairly popular support pairing. Earth really helps boost Edward's survival rate, and Nolan could stand some extra hit and defense, and their affinities provide that for each other. That's not to say that Edward is the only DB character who wants Earth, or that Nolan is the only one who wants Light, but they do work pretty well together. Wrath can also help out his offense, but considering that involves getting him below 30% HP (i.e. in OHKO range), it's fairly dangerous. Ultimately, Edward's biggest problems are his earlygame, which is rather mediocre, and the fact that there are two other Trueblades (Mia and Zihark) who have about as good a lategame but are much easier to train/more useful early on. He'll do pretty well with some levels – again, those growths are nothing to laugh at, and BEXP will help his lagging defenses – and he certainly doesn't have as bad an earlygame as some others, but he does need some work before he will really shine. -- Leonardo Level 4 Archer Water Affinity Base stats 17 HP 8 Str 0 Mag 12 Skl 10 Spd 6 Luck 5 Def 4 Res 7 Con 7 Wt Growths 60% HP 40% Str 15% Mag 75% Skl 35% Spd 65% Luck 35% Def 55% Res Starts with D Bows Innate Skills: Cancel (when the character hits an enemy, the enemy may not be able to counterattack) How to recruit: Joins automatically after a few turns in 1-P. Leonardo is one of those awkward units who has some nice things going for him, but also has his stats working against him. First of all, he's an archer/sniper/marksman. Marksmen are an excellent endgame class thanks to their great stat caps and the oh-so-broken Double Bow. However, Leonardo has to worry about the fact that he can only attack from 2 spaces away, at least until he reaches second tier and can use crossbows. This is good in a way – Leonardo's poorish durability is offset by his ability to consistently attack from afar – but also bad because it tends to stunt his experience gain (since he can't really do anything on enemy phase) and being a low-leveled Dawn Brigadier, he needs all the EXP he can get. A major problem is his growths. They aren't just glaringly awful, but they certainly aren't good. His HP is good and his def is surprisingly decent (still lowish, though), but his strength and speed are both mediocre. Since he's a purely offense-oriented class, this is a big problem for him. He has great skill, though, so at least he's pretty accurate, and high res means he at least doesn't have to worry much about counters from magic users. His high luck doesn't do much for him, really, since his lowish speed ultimately prevents his evasion from really getting anywhere. Leo does have a very good affinity, at least. He has one of two Dawn Brigade attack boosting affinities, which is nice (and the other is Micaiah, who automatically has an A support with Sothe, something you might be reluctant to break up) and it boosts defense as well, which is also something most DB people could use. Leonardo's chipping damage is somewhat helpful for the Dawn Brigade. After all, there aren't too many characters, especially early on, who will be one- rounding enemies, and Leonardo can damage them without fear of a counterattack most of the time. However, this isn't necessarily useful for very long and Ilyana and Micaiah typically outdo him at weakening enemies. In part 3, things (might) change drastically in Leonardo's favor. In 3-6, he gets a unique weapon called Lughnasadh, which is quite powerful and gives him +5 speed. FIVE POINTS OF SPEED. Which means he might actually start doubling things, especially the rather slow tigers of 3-6. And since it's a very powerful weapon for that point in the game, it helps offset his laggy strength, too! Unfortunately, this can't make up for all of his problems, and odds are he's still just adding chipping damage (although that's more valuable in part 3, where Micaiah's playing healbot and Ilyana's gone). That said, if you can promote Leonardo by 3-6, he has another thing going for him. Give him a crossbow (or Lughnasadh) and the skill Beastfoe, and he's severely wounding if not outright one-shotting every enemy on the map. Of course, this requires actually getting him promoted, and Nolan can use the same strategy, but it can be helpful. He can also help in killing the hawks of 3-13, although there are plenty of other ways to deal with them. ...oh yeah, and what the hell were they thinking, giving an archer a skill that might negate enemy counters? It's completely useless for him. Oh well, might as well just jack it and stick it on someone else. Leonardo has his uses, but when it comes down to it he's much harder to train than the other marksmen (and statistically inferior, to boot) and doesn't contribute a whole lot to his team. The only thing I'd say really works in his favor is the Lughnasadh, but even that doesn't really save him unless you've been really working at pumping him with EXP. He can be helpful, but his worth is rather limited and I can't really recommend him as a long-term character...although it might be worth getting him at least to third tier at some point, just to see his outfit. – Nolan Level 9 Fighter Earth Affinity Base stats 29 HP 12 Str 0 Mag 11 Skl 10 Spd 7 Luck 9 Def 3 Res 13 Con 13 Wt Growths 60% HP 45% Str 20% Mag 70% Skl 60% Spd 60% Luck 35% Def 40% Res Starts with C Axes Innate Skills: Nihil (prevents enemy combat-related skills from activating) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 1-1. Meet Nolan, the balanced Fighter. His growths are good. Good HP, luck, speed, and res, plus excellent skill. His defense growth is a bit low, but still decent (and with 9 base defense, his durability is overall pretty respectable), and his strength is about average. His growths are also pretty different than what you would expect from this class, but that's OK. Fighter/Warrior/Reaver is an excellent endgame class, and Nolan has an easy time capping a lot of things so if you ever have any problem with his strength (or HP or defense), they are pretty easily fixed with Bonus Experience. He tends to cap magic, resistance, and skill (and has a good shot at speed) fairly early in second tier, so that's a good time to get to work with the bonus experience if you're willing to spare some. His bases are also pretty decent, and coupled with a relatively high level for when he joins, make him one of the best characters you have for a while and at least decent forever. 12 strength is nice, and 29 HP/9 def is much better than anything we've seen so far. His speed could be better, but he shouldn't be getting doubled, at least. One of his bigger problems is that, while 12 strength gives him good damage output, it's not enough for him to wield his initial weapon (a 15 wt steel axe) without losing attack speed, so he's actually slower than he looks at first. Once you get him a few points of strength or an iron axe, though, that goes away. Nolan also gives out the highly sought after Earth affinity. As I brought up earlier, he and Edward are a popular pairing, although most frontliners could do well with his Earth. Nolan himself does pretty well with any support partner. Double Earth is another popular support pairing (that is, NolanxZihark or NolanxVolug...or NolanxFiona...) since it gives an incredible evasion boost. In 3-6, Nolan gets a special weapon called Tarvos. Besides being extra powerful and accurate, it also gives him +4 defense, which is pretty great (especially with the hard-hitting enemies in that chapter). You also get a Brave Axe at this time, although he has to compete with Jill for that. And, as I mentioned with Leonardo, Nolan is able to use crossbows+Beastfoe here, which allows him to do astronomical damage, although he will probably be doing fairly well for himself without it...in fact, if you go with that strategy you will probably want to stick him behind the front line, since otherwise he may be flooded by enemies. As far as long term use is concerned, Nolan suffers from the same issue that plagues a lot of the Dawn Brigade – he's likely to be underleveled when the teams all join up. However, since you don't have to be quite so careful with him early on thanks to his actually decent durability, coupled with his good damage output, he shouldn't have too much trouble with leveling. If you're using him, he will always be one of your better units up until part 4 (unless he gets RNG screwed, obviously) and even in part 4 does pretty well. If you can get him the levels, he's also an excellent endgame character. He's still got some solid competition for the ultimate axe, but he's one of the best candidates for it. As a final note, Nolan's innate Nihil isn't worth much until endgame, but there it's a pretty helpful skill to have. If you aren't planning on using him, don't forget to remove Nihil from him and give it to one of your Endgame characters – it's quite nice in a few endgame boss battles. – Laura Level 1 Priest[ess] Wind Affinity Base stats 16 HP 3 Str 8 Mag 3 Skl 5 Spd 8 Luck 2 Def 10 Res 5 Con 5 Wt Growths 45% HP 20% Str 70% Mag 70% Skl 70% Spd 50% Luck 20% Def 35% Res Starts with D Staves, gains E Light at 2nd tier No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 1-2. Laura is the first true healer you get, and is invaluable in the fragile Dawn Brigade. And frankly, thats all I really need to say about her. Laura has whatever inherent value you place on healing – if you like healers, Laura's good, if you prefer items, Laura's extraneous. Being a healer fan, I find Laura invaluable, but given the immense boost healing items got in this game, you might be able to get by without her. That said, let's have a look at what happens if she's actively trained instead of just healing as needed. She starts at the paltry level of 1, and can only gain EXP with staves, which basically means she's getting generally getting 11 or 12 EXP per turn, which means she won't be leveling very fast. Even if you stop and heal every time Leonardo gets a splinter, she's gonna have a hard time reaching second tier by the end of part 1. She's extremely frail at first (about equal durability to Micaiah, but her base speed is terrible so she's getting doubled a lot more), but once her immense speed growth kicks in she will at least be double-turn free and eventually might start getting some nice evasion between that and her good luck. If her leveling issues are proving to be a problem, you could use a Master Seal on her. Given how slowly she levels, it might be more beneficial to promote her a few levels early and thus forego some stat gains that it would be to wait even longer for her to get her promotion bonuses and be able to attack. There are other people who want a Seal, of course, but Laura might benefit from one. At second tier, she gains light magic, but she's stuck at E rank. The next most powerful tome, Ellight, is C rank, so Laura has to power through for a bit using the weak Light tome. Thankfully her magic is great (although her tier 2 cap could be better), so she should still be doing good damage. Whether or not she's doubling is a tougher call...while her speed growth is still great, she suffers from low caps at every tier, and her 23 speed cap at tier 2 may be enough to prevent her from doubling a lot of things. She should still be able to double slower units, though, and most of those are low resistance enemies (like tigers) so that kinda works out...but even that's only once she's gained several levels into tier 2, not right as she promotes... Sadly, in part 4 her leveling issues really come to haunt her if they haven't already. Even if you've managed to promote her to Saint, her stats are still going to be somewhat subpar thanks to her bad Bishop caps, and will have little time to grow. Saint also has some of the most notoriously horrible stat caps in the game, making her virtually useless for Endgame (well, not “useless” since she can still heal just fine, but so can Mickey, who is forced, and you really don't need more than one in Endgame.) So, having panned Laura's combat, I will say that if you powerlevel her, she can be pretty useful for a while...but it takes a while to do so, longer than any other character (on the DB at least) and she's pretty much condemned to be one of the lesser endgame units. So we're back to my original statement: Laura is the first true healer you get, and is invaluable in the Dawn Brigade, and thus the worth you put on her should be more or less equal to the worth you put on healers in general. – Sothe Level 1 Rogue Wind Affinity Base stats 35 HP 18 Str 4 Mag 20 Skl 20 Spd 15 Luck 14 Def 9 Res 8 Con 8 Wt Growths 30% HP 60% Str 20% Mag 80% Skl 45% Spd 65% Luck 20% Def 30% Res Starts with B Daggers Innate Skills: Guard (may take damage instead of support partner when partner is attacked. Activation rate is based on support level. Only works when the supporting characters are on adjacent squares) How to recruit: Joins automatically after a few turns in 1-2. Sothe is one of the classic cases of “starts godly, ends meh”. Unlike most characters of that type in previous FE games, however, Sothe's problems are his late promotion and his terrible caps – his growths are actually fairly nice. His offense is pretty great, with excellent base str/skl/spd and great str/skl growths (his speed growth isn't as good, but it's still good enough for him to double pretty much whatever he wants, at least for a while...). His durability is less impressive; while he has pretty good evasion with goodish speed and great luck, his HP and def growths are awful. Thankfully, he has high bases in both stats, so he' still pretty hard to kill for a while. However, while his growths/bases work out pretty well for him, his caps do not. He has great skill and speed caps, but his strength caps are quite low. Since this is statistically his main selling point, that really hurts him. Furthermore, Sothe is one of the three characters that has storyline-based promotions (he promotes automatically after 4-P) so he's stuck with at best 22 strength until then, and afterwards can only reach 28. So between his poor strength cap, his poor HP/def growths and caps, and the fact that he uses the weakest physical weapon type, Sothe is going to really struggle to be worth much in the late/endgame. You are also forced to bring him into the Tower, although you don't have to deploy him. ...But enough complaining! While Sothe isn't anything special later on, in the early parts of the game he is the best character you've got. Being so overleveled (and having great bases for that level, too), he's pretty much ripping everything apart. He might not be consistently one-rounding everything ...but in a way that's kind of good, because if you prefer it, you can just have him weaken enemies with bronze weapons or something so that other characters can take the kills (and if you do want him one-rounding, you can just switch him back to a higher quality weapon). He's also quite difficult to kill, having reasonably reliable evasion and pretty great concrete durability as well. Even in the latter chapters of part 1, when you get other high-level people, Sothe still stands out as pretty good. He isn't quite as reliable in part 3, when your other units should be getting close to caught up, but he's still worthwhile to have around. Also, being a thief, Sothe has an easier time finding hidden items and opening chests, and can steal some nice things from enemies, so that's another bonus. He also has an automatic A support with Micaiah, which works reasonably well for both. You'll probably want to drop him towards the latter parts of the game, although he can still contribute some in endgame if you can pull his levels up in 4-3 after he promotes. But whether or not you care about what he can do there, he's definitely worth using in the earlier parts of the game, either as a weakener/meatshield or as an actual combatant. – Ilyana Level 12 Thunder Mage Light Affinity Base stats 22 HP 6 Str 12 Mag 12 Skl 13 Spd 6 Luck 3 Def 9 Wt Growths 55% HP 45% Str 50% Mag 60% Skl 30% Spd 40% Luck 30% Def 50% Res Starts with C Thunder, gains E Wind and E Fire at 2nd tier, gains E staves at 3rd tier Innate skills: Shade (decreases chance that enemies will attack her instead of another character) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 1-3. Leaves after 1-E and joins the Greil Mercenaries automatically in 3-2. Ilyana is put in a unique situation as far as FE goes. Despite not being a lord character, she manages to have the single greatest availability in the game – she can be deployed in more chapters than anyone else. This is because she starts off fairly early with the DB, and then switches over automatically to the Greil Mercenaries in 3-2. Since she keeps her stats/skills/itmes/etc, this allows you to ferry over some items from the DB to the GM team. Statistically, Ilyana is one of the more durable mages. While her base defense of 3 isn't impressing anyone (especially at level 12), her growth of 30% is pretty decent, and her HP base and growth are both good as well. She does suffer from the lowest tier 3 HP cap in the game (tied with Laura and Sanaki at 45), which is a shame, but at least she's reaching it with ease I guess. Shade also helps her durability to some extent, since it makes enemies less inclined to target her, although you shouldn't rely on it too much to keep her alive. On the other hand, her offense is lacking. She's stuck with the worst anima magic type, Thunder, until she hits second tier, and if you want to switch her to something else after you need to pull her out of E rank. Her magic growth is good, and her base is fine, her skill is overall pretty great, but her speed is awful. 13 base is nice, and she will be doubling some early on, but 30% growth is rather pitiful. And even if you get blesssed or BEXP her or something, she gets hit hardest by the poor Sage/Archsage speed caps (her tier 3 speed cap is 30, tied for worst of any beorc). Incidentally, while Thunder is the worst anima magic type, its worth noting that Ilyana is the only character who can SS it, making her the sole user of Rexbolt. Since there is a chapter in endgame that consists entirely of enemies that are weak to thunder, that is something worth noting, although she has below average performance for the other parts of Endgame. Then again, she can at least be a secondary healer, although she can only reach A in staves which means she misses out on Fortify. Ilyana switching to the Greil Mercenaries is a bit of a mixed blessing for her. While it allows her access to the GM experience pool, it also means she requires active training on two different teams. It also kind of messes with her supports, but since you can break and rebuild supports in this game that's kind of a lesser issue, and it's not like her Light affinity is in high demand anyway (especially with the mercs, where Titania and Gatrie also have Light). Ilyana's strongest points are the early DB chapters (where her high speed base allows her to double before her growths and caps drag it down) and 4-E-3 (where thunder pays off), and she's still a decent weakener throughout part 1. Otherwise, the only noteworthy things about her are ferrying items to Ike & co. and a see-through skirt at tier 3. Well, that and a 45% strength growth which ensures that she's pretty much never losing speed from any non-siege tome, but given how much the strength of casters in general has been jacked up, her strength lead doesn't mean as much as it used to. – Aran Level 7 Soldier Thunder Affinity Base stats 24 HP 10 Str 0 Mag 12 Skl 10 Spd 6 Luck 11 Def 2 Res 11 Con 15 Wt Growths 50% HP 75% Str 10% Mag 75% Skl 35% Spd 35% Luck 70% Def 25% Res Starts with D Lances No innate skills How to recruit: Talk to him with Laura in 1-3 (he's an enemy unit who spawns after a turn or two; on Easy he'll pop up right where all of your characters start, otherwise he'll be on the west side) Random fact: Aran is tied for best beorc strength growth (with Rolf) AND best beorc defense growth (with Renning). So as you might guess, Aran is a hardcore physical unit. He has massive strength, skill, and defense, and should cap them at second and third tiers pretty quickly. Sadly, his other stats aren't so impressive. His HP is fine, but his speed, luck, and res are low. The low speed and luck combined mean his evasion is bad, although with such high defense that's not too huge a problem, and his low res means you probably won't want to pit him against casters, and the low speed prevents him from doubling much, which really inhibits his offense. Fortunately, Aran can mostly fix his speed issues (and luck and res, for that matter) with BEXP. Since he should cap str/skl/def quite quickly, this leaves BEXP to push his other stats up pretty far. Unfortunately, Aran really does want BEXP to ever do anything besides tank physical attacks...but then again, he's pretty damn good at tanking physical attacks (and on a team that struggles with that, too) so even without the BEXP he's got some nice use. I do recommend that you try and bump up his speed a bit by part 3, though, where otherwise some enemies may start double-turning him (myrmidons in part 1 may also be doubling him, but they aren't doing overwhelming damage anyway). In keeping with the whole tank theme, Aran also has a Thunder affinity, which gives a raw durability boost (+def and avo), which makes him pretty good for just about any other character. He himself would probably prefer raw defense as well, since his evasion is pretty bad even with the help of Earth, although boosting att/hit would help too. Basically, Aran is the tank. High def, goodish (though surprisingly unspectacular) HP. His high strength means he hits hard, but his low speed means he won't double much. Many complain that he has low hit early on, but that shouldn't be an issue for too long with his skill growth. So basically he's high defense, average offense. Definitely worth using for the DB chapters, and if you can fix his speed then he can continue to serve you up until endgame. He does miss out on the magical 34 speed cap, but 33 is still enough to double a good chunk of the enemies. – Meg Level 3 Armor Sword Heaven Affinity Base stats: 21 HP 10 Str 1 Mag 7 Skl 8 Spd 8 Luck 10 Def 5 Res 6 Con 12 Wt Growths 60% HP 35% Str 15% Mag 40% Skl 65% Spd 75% Luck 35% Def 50% Res Starts with C Swords, gains E lances at 2nd tier, gains D Axes at 3rd tier. Innate Skills: Fortune (negates enemy criticals) How to recruit: View base conversation “In Town” in chapter 1-4. Let's look at stats. She's got good HP, lackluster strength (10 at level 3 is nice, but 35% growth not so much), above average magic for great justice, mediocre but sufficient skill, unreasonably high speed and luck, decent defense (again, 10 base at level 3 is good, and 35% is a decent def growth as opposed to a lowish strength growth) and great resistance. Level 3 in 1-4 isn't just mind-numbingly awful, but it's pretty low and in particular her 8 base speed really hurts her – even with her high growth it will be a while before she's doubling, so until then her offense is kinda low, and at first she may even be getting doubled by faster enemies, which she doesn't quite have the base durability to handle. If you can train Meg up a bit, though, she does become a pretty respectable tank. While she doesn't quite have Aran's raw physical durability, she's stomping him in evasion and res. On the other hand, BEXP doesn't solve her offense issues as readily as it does with him – the way her growths and caps are, it may be a while before she caps enough stats to really make good use of BEXP, and you may just want to go ahead with it once she caps luck and speed at tier 2 (which shouldn't be any trouble for her – the luck maybe, but definitely not the speed). In any case, it's gonna be a while before you can do much about her low strength, and if you want her using a stronger weapon than swords you'll have to either pull her out of E lances in 2nd tier or wait until 3rd tier. Meg's biggest problem, ironically, is probably her speed. While her growth is excellent, her caps are not. She has the usual 20 speed cap at 1st tier, so she may get to doubling in the latter chapters of part 1 if you get her a lot of levels, but then her tier 2 cap is 22, which is just atrocious. This means that it's stuck at 22 until she hits tier 3, which probably isn't happening until somewhere in part 4, and then she has to get to work pulling her speed back up again, only for it to cap at 32, which is semipassable but still below the Endgame ideal. So between this and her sword spec and her lowish strength growth, her offense is basically going to be below average forever. Meg's Heaven affinity is...not worth a whole lot, really, although I guess it might help out Nolan or Jill who tend to struggle with hit early on. Aran might benefit from it as well, or maybe Ilyana...but I think that they all still have other better support partners. Her innate is pretty redundant on her (since she has excellent luck and as such shouldn't be getting critted anyway) and it's high capacity cost means other people probably don't care about it either, so I would recommend removing it and either selling it or ferrying it via Ilyana to the mercs (who, in turn, will probably just sell it anyway). Meg is raw survivability. She needs some training, more than the other more durable brigadiers will need, but she does end up with good defense/avoid/ resistance. However, her lackluster strength and painfully low tier 2 speed cap greatly inhibit her offense. – Volug Level 15 Wolf Earth Affinity Base stats (untransformed -> Halfshifted, which he is automatically throughout all of part 1) 49 HP 11 -> 16 Str 2 -> 3 Mag 12 -> 18 Skl 13 -> 19 Spd 13 Luck 9 -> 13 Def 5 -> 7 Res 11 -> 20 Con 18 -> 30 Wt Growths 95% HP 25% Str 15% Mag 35% Skl 40% Spd 90% Luck 15% Def 10% Res Starts with A Strike Innate skills: Howl (may stun an enemy for one turn after they use a ranged attack), Wildheart (allows a laguz to shift at any time, but only increases their stats by half instead of doubling them). How to recruit: View the base conversation “Nailah” in 1-5, or start the chapter and he will join automatically. Volug is the first laguz character that you get, and the game forces him into a rather unique position. While most laguz have to deal with a gauge, Volug does not – however, instead of being transformed some of the time and getting doubled stats, he is transformed all of the time (in part 1) and his stats are only increased by 50%. However, once part 3 comes around, he has the option of staying untransformed and waiting for his normal gauge to fill, allowing him to take advantage of the normal stat doubling that comes with transformation. Statistically, Volug has good speed and WHAT THE CRAP HP and Luck. On the other hand, his defense and resistance are pretty bad, and his strength growth is lowish as well. That said, his bases are generally pretty good for this point in the game, and he's consistently doing lots of damage if not ORKOing on account of his actually quite high 16 base str (with his A strike level, this equates to 25 attack power and he's doubling basically everything). He also gains additional attack power simply by increasing his weapon level, which is sort of nice since he's doubling a lot and shouldn't have too much trouble reaching S strike (plus this means his primary method of increasing attack power doesn't necessarily require him to kill things, which means you can have him weaken an enemy to increase his strike and have another character take the kill for EXP). He also can move much farther than other characters, making him a very effective frontliner. Volug's earth affinity is much sought out in the DB, although it's somewhat offset by his aforementioned high move, which can make it a little difficult for other characters to gain support points with him and/or be in support range if you want to have him plowing ahead. His innate skill Howl is pretty pointless (stunning doesn't actually keep the enemy from attacking, just moving), and honestly I'd just sell it. Wildheart is what allows him to halfshift, and since he must be perpetually halfshifted in part 1, Wildheart cannot be removed until then. Whether or not you care to keep it on Volug after that is up to you, but if you can get some Olivi Grass you're probably better off then there's not much reason to Halfshift anymore. While his defense and resistance are rather poor, he's still got a decent base (9, which is 13 hafshifted) and his massive HP and good evasion (and also his affinity) really offset his poor def/res. You still might want to watch out for fire based attacks, which he is weak to, but even then he shouldn't be in too much danger (not any more than most other brigadiers at any rate). His inability to use/counter ranged attacks is frustrating, but something all laguz share. Though he will ultimately be outclassed by the Royals, Volug is still worth using, at the very least throughout part 1. -- Tauroneo Level 14 Lance General Thunder Affinity Base stats 38 HP 24 Str 12 Mag 22 Skl 20 Spd 18 Luck 21 Def 15 Res 11 Con 21 Wt Growths 55% HP 40% Str 5% Mag 65% Skl 50% Spd 20% Luck 45% Def 50% Res Starts with S Lances and A Axes, gains D Swords at 3rd tier. Innate skills: Resolve (increases skill and speed by 50% when HP is under half) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 1-6. Note that he is not available for 1-7, 1-8, 1-E, or 3-6, and then is required again in 3-12 and 3-13, although you are still able to access his equipment/skills/etc during the chapters in between even though he cannot be deployed. Tauroneo is the first character to suffer from really bizarre availability as indicated above. He's around for one chapter (or two, if you prefer, since 1-6 is comprised of two parts) where he is stupidly overleveled at level 14 tier 2. Then he isn't usable again until 3-12 and 3-13, where he's mandatory. In these chapters his performance is a bit less special, although he can still be pretty good. Then part 4 rolls around and he's forced to go with Tibarn's team for 4-2 and 4-5, and then there's Endgame. Statistically, Tauroneo is kind of an oddball general (then again, they all are). His skill and res are both great, and he has good speed too (though like all generals it's inhibited by his poor caps). His def and HP are both fine, but neither is particularly good. He has decent strength (meh growth but good base), a surprisingly high magic base (nice for Imbue, even if his growth is only 5%) and his luck growth is terrible. He has enough luck that he should not be getting critted by much, but it's low enough to hurt his evasion. ...blargh, that last paragraph had too many parentheses but I can't think of a good way to reformat it. Oh well. Anyway, Resolve is a nice skill but not as good as it was in PoR since it no longer boosts strength. Tauroneo might not be all that great a candidate for it, really, since he's fairly durable, but you might consider giving it to someone else or having Ilyana ferry it to the GMs. Thunder is a nice affinity, but Tauroneo's wonky availability and poor endgame class makes it difficult for him to get a support partner. Obviously Tauroneo is a godsend in 1-6, although many people (including myself) just use him as a meatshield since he's basically invulnerable. You can have him fight too, and doing so makes that chapter much easier, although if you're trying to level a lowbie brigadier then you may still need the EXP. Either way, in 3-12 and 3-13 he's still a pretty decent wall (though his base def is low for his level, it's still enough that he's not in too much danger). Once part 4 comes he can still be decent, but here he is probably getting overshadowed by other units – he's still a worthwhile tank, just not as noteworthy as he was before. And finally, he's got a pretty below average endgame, being one of the worst endgame classes, although if you can powerlevel him in 4-5 he might do alright. Then again, you could just powerlevel someone else, so...yeah. Definitely worthwhile in his early chapters, but once endgame rolls around I recommend you focus on someone else. – Zihark Level 3 Swordmaster Earth Affinity Base stats 30 HP 17 Str 6 Mag 22 Skl 23 Spd 11 Luck 13 Def 11 Res 11 Con 11 Wt Growths 55% HP 35% Str 10% Mag 75% Skl 70% Spd 40% Luck 25% Def 35% Res Starts with A Swords Innate skills: Adept (may grant an extra attack or two per round, like a Brave weapon) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 1-6 Well, Zihark is another of those high-level types that like to join in mid/late part 1. His bases are pretty reasonable for his level, although his luck and perhaps his HP are a little low, while his Res and perhaps his Def are a little better than you would expect. He also has a decent magic base I suppose, if anyone cares. His growths, however, aren't exactly astounding. They aren't horrible or anything, just sort of...unspecial, I guess. He does have excellent speed and skill as per Swordmaster standard (the best of them all, actually, although they all have a lot), and his resistance is fairly good. His HP is also respectable, and his luck growth is okay but won't make up for his subpar base for a while. Sadly, his strength and defense growths are both below average, so he can start to lag in those respects. Having said that about his growths, he does do fairly well with BEXP. He tends to cap skl/spd quite fast and caps res without much trouble either, so if you wait for those (with or without res, really) then you can use BEXP to pull his HP, luck, strength, and perhaps defense up. The strength boost is nice at any time, although by the time you can really use BEXP he should have enough evasion that his defense doesn't matter too much anymore. From a practical standpoint, Zihark is just another case of a high level character who joins early. He's actually semi-tanky (hardly the ultimate wall, but 13 def and 30 HP works well enough in part 1, and he actually has some decent evasion) and has great damage output, but both start to fall behind a bit as he levels. If you get him a support his evasion should more than make up for his declining defense, and while his strength will start to lag without BEXP his high crit and Adept can help make up for that. Incidentally, Zihark is an example of when the developers gave a character a skill that actually makes sense for them. Adept activates based on speed, and Zihark is very fast, so that means he's got a decent chance of getting an extra hit (or two!) per turn. His Earth affinity, as I alluded to before, also really helps his durability. He still might struggle to survive in part 3, where the enemies are extra-unreasonably accurate and powerful, but otherwise he should function as quite the dodge tank with pretty much any support partner. Zihark starts out strong, but his stats can start to fall behind a bit as the game progresses. However, between his good Endgame class and affinity, at least respectable stats, and ready BEXP use, he makes for a useful unit throughout the entire game. NOTICE: Zihark can switch sides from the DB to the mercs in chapters 3-6, 3-7, or 3-E! Have him and Lethe/Mordecai talk and he will switch sides. If you transferred an A support between him and Ilyana or Brom, they can also get him to switch sides in 3-7 or 3-E. – Jill Level 14 Dracoknight Thunder Affinity Base stats 24 HP 11 Str 1 Mag 12 Skl 15 Spd 14 Luck 13 Def 3 Res 7 Con 36 Wt Growths 50% HP 45% Str 15% mag 45% Skl 65% Spd 60% Luck 35% Def 45% Res Starts with B Axes, gains D Lances upon promotion No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 1-6. Is not available for 1-8. Jill is yet another of those characters who's stats are sort of inverted from their class. Thankfully, they're fairly good all around, with decent to good...well, everything, except her speed and luck which push into the “great” category. She's also the only female Dragonlord, which is one of the best endgame classes. Jill's bases aren't so hot, though. Her spd/luck/def are all good, but her HP and strength are quite poor. The HP isn't too huge a problem, but 11 base strength means she's getting weighed down significantly by a steel axe (4 points, meaning her speed with a steel axe is actually 11), so she has doubling issues. You can forge her an axe, though, and that will go a long way towards solving her offense issues early on, and once she promotes she should have enough speed and strength to have overall good offense. Her defense is always at least decent, and her evasion and resistance pick up pretty fast too, so her durability generally shouldn't be a problem except very early on and maybe in 3-6 (where it's a problem for pretty much everyone anyway). Jill's Thunder affinity boosts her durability even further, making her a reasonably effective tank with reasonably effective offense. As indicated above, Jill's endgame can be pretty superb. She can have a bit of difficulty getting to the higher levels, but it shouldn't be too hard. She generally doesn't get a whole lot out of BEXP until third tier, but she should cap mag/spd/luck/res with little difficulty mid-tire 3, so then you can power up her HP/str/skl/def. Jill's a pretty useful character in general. Being the only flier available for the DB (besides Vika for late part 1, who has transformation issues) is quite a plus, as is specializing in axes. Her hit can be problematic at first, but her skill is generally good enough that it shouldn't be a huge issue. She does have a somewhat shaky start, at least offensively, but she's one of those units who just gets better and better without really ever getting held back by anything. Oh yeah. While I don't typically bring transfer data into the equation, I do feel I should point out that Jill is one of the better transfer data candidates. She doesn't have too much trouble capping strength and speed in PoR, and getting +2 to those in RD is quite helpful to her (skl/def/HP would benefit her a lot too, of course). NOTICE: Jill can switch sides from the DB to the mercs in 3-7 or 3-E! Have Haar speak to her to get her to switch sides. You can also talk to her with Lethe or Mist if they have a transferred A support. – Fiona Level 9 Lance Knight Earth Affinity Base stats 25 HP 8 Str 6 Mag 8 Skl 10 Spd 7 Luck 8 Def 6 Res 7 Con 31 Wt Growths 45% HP 40% Str 15% Mag 40% Skl 60% Spd 55% Luck 55% Def 50% Res Starts with C Lances, gains C Bows at 3rd tier Innate skills: Savior (allows unit to rescue others without skl/spd loss), Imbue (regains HP equal to magic stat at the beginning of every turn). How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 1-7. Cannot be deployed in 1-8. Fiona is the last of the DB lowbies, and their first and only horse- mounted unit. She has the much-coveted Earth affinity, some nifty skills, and really rocks her defense-oriented growths. She's also one of two paladins that reaches the glorious and highly erotic 34 speed cap (and caps it easily to boot). On the other hand, her bases just...suck. Hard. Okay, so her HP and def are decent, her res is good, and her magic base rocks (and actually matters to her since she has innate Imbue). Her HP and def aren't as good as some, but they work for a level 9. On the other hand, her strength, skill, and speed are terrible. She has rather pitiful damage output early on and can't double (and may be even getting doubled by faster enemies), and even has accuracy troubles. A forge can at least give her some hit and power, but even then she's not doing much, and while her defense is reasonable for her level, she's still taking too much damage to tank well. In other words, early on she just doesn't have anything going for her. Once her growths kick in, she does at least start getting some fairly good durability. High speed and luck gives good evasion, and her defense and res are quite good as well. Her HP growth is kind of low, but it's not really that big a problem. Her relatively high magic also makes Imbue continue being pretty useful to her, and Savior lets her rescue someone in trouble without putting her back on the receiving end of double turns. Her offense doesn't really get anywhere, though, at least not until late second tier or even somewhere in third, depending on how quickly you can level her – 40% str/skl is about average, and about average isn't enough to pull her out of her terrible bases in them. You can at least use some BEXP to pull one or both up, though; she should have no trouble capping spd/def/res in mid-second tier. Her Earth affinity is nice and can further increase her evasion beyond her good luck and speed growths (not to mention it's an affinity most people want). Her innate skills I've already covered, but I want to take a moment to say that even if you don't use her at all, you should at least consider taking her Imbue and Savior and giving them to other characters. Being a horse rider actually tends to hurt her more than it helps...many of her chapters have movement penalties to mounted units and/or brush or swamps or other things that impede her movement. She does always get the benefits of Canto, though. Fiona has some pretty enormous struggles in her early game, and it's gonna be a while before she can really overcome her atrocious base stats (or at the very least, her atrocious base offense). Given that the Dawn Brigade is already suffering from thinly spread EXP and generally underpowered units, it's pretty painful to add Fiona to that mix, especially when her poor offense makes it difficult for her to gain kills and thus gain EXP. But if you manage to level her, she can serve as a good Wishblade candidate for Endgame. – Tormod Level 5 Fire Sage Fire Affinity Base stats 34 HP 13 Str 17 Mag 16 Skl 20 Spd 14 Luck 12 Def 14 Res 7 Con 7 Wt Growths 50% HP 55% Str 40% Mag 45% Skl 55% Spd 25% Luck 35% Def 45% Res Starts with A Fire, B Thunder, C Wind, gains E Staves at 3rd tier. Innate skills: Celerity (increases move by 2) How to recruit: Talk to him with Sothe in 1-7. After part 1 he leaves and doesn't reappear until 4-4 where he joins automatically. Tormod, like the other two members of the LEA (Muarim and Vka) has some of the most splendidly awkward availability in the game. He starts off in part 1 somewhat overleveled and pretty good in general, then vanishes until part 4 where he rejoins woefully underleveled to the point where he's a borderline liability. As such, he's sort of difficult to discuss beyond “he's good at first and he lolsucks later”. But I'll try anyway. He has some pretty bizarre growths. He has great HP, strength, and defense for a caster, and he's one of the faster ones as well. He's not just a speed demon, but...well, he's actually fairly close, having the best speed caps of the magic-users and an SS tome that boosts his speed enough to double most everything. His skill is also decent, and his resistance is a bit low for a caster but still more than enough to get by. His magic, however, is kind of low, and his luck is poor as well. He can use BEXP pretty well – at least, in theory. He might get a few good levels from it in second tier, since he should cap HP, strength, and speed. At third tier, he caps HP, strength, speed, and defense quickly, allowing you to boost his magic, resistance, and skill (probably not so much with his luck, though). Sadly, his extremely limited availability hinders his ability to use BEXP, so even that isn't helping him too much unless you can shoot him to the low teen levels of tier 3, which isn't happening anytime soon. Maybe with Paragon and, like, every kill in 4-4 or something, but...yeah. He does have that early bit going in his favor, though. Having a somewhat durable caster who can double (less so on HM, maybe) and specs in the best anima magic type is pretty great for the Dawn Brigade. Celerity is pretty great too, although you should really remove it form him in part 1 so someone else can have it unless you're just dead set on training him for endgame (and probably even then – I mean, otherwise you're missing out on upward of 12 chapters of having Celerity just so Tormod can keep it innate). His Fire affinity is nice and helps offset his low magic, but he's going to have trouble finding a support partner. At least Vika and Muarim are there for him, though. Honestly, he's only worth using in part 1. If you can train him in part 4 then that's great, but it takes a lot of EXP in a very short time and makes one of the hardest part 4 chapters even harder. Still, if you can pull it off, he can be a respectable endgame sage between his speed and Rexflame. – Muarim Level 19 Tiger Thunder Affinity Base stats 58 HP 18 -> 36 Str 3 -> 6 Mag 14 -> 28 Skl 11 -> 22 Spd 12 Luck 15 -> 30 Def 9 -> 18 Res 14 -> 24 Con 23 -> 44 Wt Growths 60% HP 55% Str 5% mag 45% Skl 20% Spd 55% Luck 35% Def 30% Res Starts with A Strike No innate skills How to recruit: Talk to Tormod in 1-7. Leaves after part 1 and doesn't reappear until 4-4, where he joins automatically. Muarim has some pretty lovely base stats to go with being your first laguz that actually functions like a laguz with the transformation gauge and doubling stats and all. 36 base strength is higher than most people's tier 3 caps, and 58 HP/28 skl/22 spd/30 def/18 res is awesome too. His luck is really the only base he has that isn't just amazing, but with durability like that he doesn't really need to worry about luck. As a happy corollary, he's also the only LEA member that has much hope of being useful in 4-4 without extreme powerleveling in part 1. While Muarim won't be doubling anything, he's still packing quite a punch with the hit he gets and tanking fairly well, although he's still got to deal with the typical laguz issues like transformation and no 2-range. His growth aren't quite as spectacular, although they're still all right. His HP, luck, and defense are good and his strength is awesome. His res growth is also quite high for a tiger, although the fact that he only needs 1 point in it to cap renders it a bit moot. His speed is quite poor, though, both in terms of growth and cap, and that pretty much screws him out of having a good endgame which in turn means there's not much reason to put any effort into leveling him in part 4. Which really is a shame, because he'd be the easiest to do it with. Like Tormod, Muarim has an affinity that works fairly well for him and might benefit someone else, too. Also like Tormod, he has trouble finding a support partner and is pretty much destined to support Tormod or Vika. He has no innate skills, so no surprises there. Basically, use Muarim in part 1 and maybe some in part 4 (at least until his gauge runs out). After that, he's really not worth it for Endgame, especially with the Royals and practically-Royals running around, so go ahead and bring someone else with you into the Tower. – Vika Level 13 Raven Wind affinity Base stats 38 HP 9 -> 18 Str 5 -> 10 Mag 13 -> 26 Skl 15 -> 30 Spd 14 Luck 7 -> 14 Def 7 -> 14 Res 6 -> 15 Con 5 -> 14 Wt Growths 60% HP 25% Str 50% Mag 60% Skl 60% Spd 65% Luck 15% Def 65% Res Starts with A Strike Innate skills: Shriek (may reduce enemy luck to 0 after they use a ranged attack) How to recruit: Talk to Tormod in 1-7. Leaves after part 1 and doesn't reappear until 4-4, where she joins automatically. What were they thinking? I want to know. Vika has some pretty awesome growths, as you can see. It'd be nice if they dunked one a bit (like that absurdly high magic that she can't even use for anything besides Imbue) and put it into strength, but whatever. She ties for the highest growth total in the game, the other two being Micaiah and Sanaki. And she's a laguz. Seriously, what. So she's superfast, and she's superaccurate, and she's superdodgy, and she's superrezzy. Her HP isn't actually all that great by laguz standards, but it's enough to offset her low defense (her comically high evasion helps, too). So her only really weak point is her strength. And even then, that (and her defense and HP, for that matter) can be bumped up with BEXP fairly soon. Unfortunately, Vika is hit harder than Tormod and Muarim by the availability issue. She's the only member of the LEA who isn't just stomping the hell out of everything in part 1 – still good, just not quite one-rounding a lot of enemies and less durable – and while she's a comparatively low level, she's still not getting much EXP. Conversely, when she rejoins in 4-4, she's pretty much a laughingstock. Her avoid is still actually okay, and she's still doubling almost everything thanks to her excellent speed base, but her damage output and concrete durability are no longer passable. If you manage to get her to S strike in part 1 (highly unlikely) then maybe she'll fare better, but even so she's terrible at worst and unspecial at best. If you can train her, she does at least fare better than Muarim. As you have already seen, her growths are fantastic if not particularly well- distributed, and if you can get her to level 30 or so she should be ready for some BEXP action. The problem, then, is getting her to level 30 by the time 4-4 ends, which is going to be quite a trick between her general weakness and the stunted laguz Exp gain. Also, like Muarim and many others, she gets kind of screwed by the presence of Laguz Royals who are outperforming her in endgame even if she does get trained. ...I'd have the usual affinity/skills paragraph here, but there's really not much worth mentioning about either. Shriek is bad and should be sold, Wind is bad and she's got really limited support options anyway. Wheeee. Actually, I guess by mentioning that her stuff in this regard isn't worth mentioning, I mentioned it. </paradox> So...she's got some potential, but suffers from the usual laguz issues. She's still pretty useful in part 1, but by 4-4 she is gonna need some serious help to get out of the hole she's fallen into. – Nailah Level 33 Wolf Queen Wind Affinity Base stats 66 HP 17 -> 34 Str 5 -> 10 Mag 23 -> 46 Skl 19 -> 38 Spd 35 Luck 16 -> 32 Def 13 -> 26 Res 9 -> 19 Con 16 -> 39 Wt Growths 60% HP 30% Str 15% Mag 20% Skl 20% Speed 45% Luck 30% Def 30% Res Starts with SS Strike Innate skills: Formshift (allows laguz to be permanently in laguz form without stat loss), Glare (may prevent an enemy from performing any action but increases their defense and resistance; activated by command), Savage (mastery skill: triples strength and halves enemy's Skill, i.e. OHKO), Guard (may take damage for a character this unit has a support with) How to recruit: Joins automatically in 1-8. Leaves after part 1 and automatically rejoins in 4-1. ...What do you want me to say? Nailah is a complete goddess in 1-8 and 1-E and an overall goddess in part 4, and nothing less than a goddess at any point. Her growths are terrible and nobody cares because her bases are so stupendously high that she could never ever gain any stats and she'd still be completely ruining life for your enemies. She might not be seeing a support with her wind and poor availability, and she doesn't need one. It might be worth supporting someone with her just for the sake of Guard, but even then it's basically just a matter of finding someone who wants her protection and less her actually needing anything. One thing worth noting, though, is that she will leave if Rafiel falls. So don't let his HP drop to 0 or you lose out on her. I'm pretty sure she (and Rafiel, for that matter) will still rejoin in 1-E if he falls in 1-8, but otherwise you're out of luck. Otherwise...um...I really don't have much else to say besides WHOAMG Nailah. Try not to completely abuse her in part 1 lest she leave your DB underleveled, but in part 4 don't be afraid to have her let loose on some poor, unsuspecting enemies. – Rafiel Level 12 Heron Heaven Affinity Base stats 31 HP 1 -> 2 Str 6 -> 12 Mag 1 -> 2 Skl 6 -> 12 Spd 31 Luck 3 -> 6 Def 13 -> 26 Res 8 -> 14 Con 5 -> 9 Wt Growths 60% HP 0% Str 40% Mag 10% Skl 20% Spd 60% Luck 10% Def 50% Res No weapon levels Innate skills: Blessing (heals surrounding characters equal to user's magic stat), Galdrar (allows Heron to use chants) How to recruit: Joins automatically in 1-8. Leaves after part 1 and automatically rejoins in 4-1. Rafiel is the first Heron you meet, and ironically manages to exist in the least amount of chapters. Being a chanter, his worth is pretty much completely tied to how much value you place on chanting. There are five chants: Vigor, which fulfills the bard/dancer role by allowing units to act again after they've used their turn, Bliss, which raises an ally's biorhythm to the max, Sorrow, which lowers an enemy's biorhythm to it's lowest point (and involves actually putting the superfrail heron right up next to an enemy), Valor, which raises an ally laguz' transformation gauge to full, and Recover, which is a full heal and status recovery. Valor is learned automatically, Bliss is learned at level 15 (I believe Sorrow is also, but some say it's level 20 and either way it's pretty useless), Valor at 30, and Recover at 40. Rafiel stands out from his siblings by being able to chant four people at a time – at any time. Transformed or not, he is able to affect all units around him, meaning if you can position characters in a diamond formation and put him in the middle, that's four characters that can move again (or get max bio or whatever). This tends to be impractical to do, but even so he can chant two or three no matter how their positioned around him, just as long as they are right next to him (as opposed to Leanne, who has to have units positioned on opposite sides of her, or Reyson who can only chant one character while untransformed). Conversely, Rafiel has the most limited movement of the three. He has 5 move, which is low to begin with, gains no move upon transforming, and cannot fly or Canto. He is also unable to climb ledges while transformed, which...can be sort of irritating, actually, since two of the maps he's in have several ledges. His Heaven affinity is alright for Endgame, if you can find a support partner for him (probably Nailah, although she doesn't really need it). He's the best Heron for an ultra-speedy Endgame win, although in casual play Reyson is generally performing better. Statistically, Rafiel and Leanne have extremely similar growths, and all three Herons have poor growths overall, but since they don't really need stats to do their job that's kind of a moot point (it is worth noting that Rafiel and Leanne are the only characters with a 0% growth that aren't already level 20/20/20. Not like they do anything at all with Strength anyway). So Rafiel is a Heron, and as such has whatever inherent worth you place on Heron-ness. Since he and his siblings are mutually exclusive, and only ever cross paths in Endgame (where you must choose only one), he doesn't really have to worry about competing with the others and can just be your Heron for the chapters he's around. – The Black Knight Level 20 Black Knight (no, really) Dark Affinity Base stats 70 HP 38 Str 18 Mag 40 Skl 30 Spd 20 Luck 35 Def 25 Res 13 Con 25 Wt Growths (n/a; they're all 0 and he's max level anyway so they don't matter) Starts with SS Swords and S Lances Innate skills: Nihil (prevents enemy combat skills from activating), Imbue (restores HP equal to magic stat at the beginning of every turn; as I recall he doesn't have this on Easy mode), Eclipse (Quintuples strength and negates enemy defense, i.e. enemy goes splat) How to recruit: Joins automatically in 1-9, where no other characters besides Micaiah are available. Can be deployed in 1-E. Leaves afterwards, but reappears in 3-6 after a few turns pass, then leaves permanently. He's invincible, unless you're playing Easy Mode in which case he can die, but only if you're actually trying to get him killed by letting enemies with poison weapons bonk him for a while. He's killing every single thing he faces, often in one hit, always in two, and he doubles everything. He also has 1-2 range and Eclipse. He's basically the resident god to pair up with your ultimate goddess, Nailah. Of course, he's only around for three chapters, and then he goes away. But for those three chapters he's dominating. Use him somewhat sparingly, but know that if you get in trouble, he's there to bail you out [for three chapters]. – Elincia Level 1 Queen Heaven Affinity Base stats 36 HP 19 Str 17 Mag 21 Skl 22 Spd 29 Luck 18 Def 24 Res 6 Con 23 Wt Growths 45% HP 65% Str 40% Mag 50% Skl 70% Spd 60% Luck 20% Def 35% Res Starts with B Swords and A Staves Innate skills: Renewal (regain 10% HP per turn), Stun (Mastery skill; 3x damage and prevents enemy from moving for one turn). Also gains Mercy (Lethal blows reduce enemies to 1 HP instead) after part 2, but it still takes 10 capacity. How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 2-P and is usable again in 2-E. Cannot be used again until 4-2 (although you can access her skills/items in 3-E). Elincia is essentially the main character of part 2, though she isn't actually around for 3 out of 5 chapters in it. She is already at 3rd tier, and in part 2 will be gaining rather pitiful CEXP to go along with that (after all, she's fighting tier 1 and low lever tier 2 enemies). She still gains normal EXP from staves, though, so she might gain a level or two or even three, depending on how you handle 2-E. She's still high level when she rejoins in 4-2, which is pretty cool. One thing that she does suffer from is bad bases. It's not as noticeable as some others because of her high level, but her base stats are more comparable to, say, a mid tier 2 character. Fortunately, she has very high offense-oriented growths to help offset that, and her prf sword Amiti helps out with her defenses (it gives +3 def/res). Speaking of Amiti, Elincia has Amiti. She can't use it in 2-P, but every chapter she's in after that she's got it, unless she's an NPC. Anyway, Amiti has been significantly improved since it's PoR days; it still has the Brave effect (single attacks are now double, double attacks are now quadruple), and still gives the aforementioned durability boost, and it's still unbreakable, but now it also has high attack power to go with all that! It's pretty great, and gives Elincia some excellent offense. ...Hey, I've totally glossed over her healing abilities. As in PoR, Elincia is a staff 'n' sword user. Unlike in PoR, her magic is actually pretty low. However, she's still a sufficient healer, and she can hit S staves to use Fortify in the Endgame if you like. Not as potent a healer as the others, but she has great movement and a high enough base that Physic works well enough for her, so there's still not much trouble on that front. You do need to be wary of crossbows, as they are quite effectively one-hit killing her. This is a sad but true flier issue (well, non-wyvern flier), so just keep an eye out for enemies that might use crossbows and keep Elincia out of their range. Her Heaven affinity doesn't mean a whole lot, especially coupled with her late availability which means she has trouble finding a support partner, although I suppose she and Lucia could make a pretty nice team. Renewal is helpful, and of course Stun is great. Mercy is quite detrimental to Elincia's own performance, but it can be nice for helping some low leveled character train (Elincia knocks an enemy to one HP, then lowbie goes in for the kill). Elincia is a pretty significant powerhouse, even if only because she gets the awesomeness of Amiti, and she can heal on top of it. Her durability is kind of shaky (although she does have some nice evasion), and she would really like some levels to pull herself out of her poor offensive bases, but once she does (and she can do that through staves, which is nice) she is a force to be reckoned with. – Marcia Level 5 Falcon Knight Fire Affinity Base stats 34 HP 16 Str 6 Mag 17 Skl 20 Spd 12 Luck 16 Def 15 Res 7 Con 23 Wt Growths 70% HP 30% Str 20% Mag 40% Skl 65% Spd 50% Luck 35% Def 35% Res Starts with C Swords and B Lances No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 2-P. Is available for 2-3, then automatically rejoins Team Elincia in 2-E. Is available for 3-9, then joins the mercs in 3-11. Marcia is a pretty typical Pegasus Knight (or Falcon Knight, rather). Besides her abnormally high HP, she has high speed, decent def/res, a good luck growth (slightly low base, though), and decent skill and poor strength. She also has one of the hgher magic stats for Imbue (but Tanith and Sigrun have more.) Being one of the CRKs, Marcia also has fairly poor availability. She's also one of the lower leveled characters in that group, which hurts her a bit further. On the other hand, she's their only flier which is beneficial in 2-3 and 3-9 (and 2-E, where she shows up earlier than the others). While she is decent enough on that team, though, she's going to have a hard time catching up to the GMs when the two teams merge in 3-11. If trained, she's generally a bit better than Tanith or Sigrun, but she's still not getting anywhere with her strength until you can start BEXPing it up in third tier (somewhere in the 10- 15 level range). Otherwise, she does have good overall durability and only really needs to fear crossbows, which admittedly will devestate her. Her Fire affinity is very helpful to her to boost her offense up a bit, if you can find her a partner. And despite her shortcomings, she can at the very least serve you well as a flier, although by 3-11 she still has to compete with the likes of the hawks and Haar. She's not the most durable character ever, but she does have a nice combination of evasion/def/res/HP and will make a good Wishblade user. Try to pull her strength up and she should work pretty well for you. – Nealuchi Level 22 Raven Fire Affinity Base stats 53 HP 10 -> 20 Str 4 -> 8 Mag 9 -> 18 Skl 18 -> 36 Spd 24 Luck 10 -> 20 Def 10 -> 20 Res 16 -> 25 Con 15 -> 23 Wt Growths 55% HP 35% Str 10% Mag 40% Skl 40% Spd 80% Luck 40% Def 25% Res Starts with A Strike Innate skills: Wrath (+50 crit when HP falls below 30%) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the start of 2-P. Is available in 2-2 and 2-E, then leaves and doesn't rejoin until the end of 3-E (in time for you to place him on a team). Well, ol' Neal has some nice HP and defense, great luck and speed, and decent enough skill. His resistance is good, and his skill is too. Decent all- around character, although he could stand some more strength. Like Vika, however, Nealuchi suffers from having just outright awkward availability. He has 3 part 2 chapters where he performs pretty well, and then he leaves until part 4, where he's...well, not as hopelessly underleveled as Tormod & co, but still pretty unimpressive. He doesn't have the absurdly high growths of Vika, but they're still fair by laguz standards and he still should be capping at least four stats if not more. Neal also has Wrath, which combined with the ability to deliberately nerf his own durability by unshifting can really improve his offense. Of course, it still needs to be used carefully, but with monster avoid like Neal's, it can work out okay (or not). His fire affinity also helps boost his mediocre attack power. Sadly, he is still going to have a lot of trouble reaching SS (or even just plain S) strike, which keeps his attack down some. And, like all of those who have oddball availability, Neal may have trouble finding someone who is willing to put up with his unreliable support. He's definitely worthwhile in part 2 (and he can even survive lower quality crossbows!) but unless you have a lot of EXP to put into him and/or a lot of opportunities to build up his strike, he probably won't be helping out all that much in part 4. - Leanne Level 5 Heron Water Affinity Base stats 25 HP 0 -> 0 Str 3 -> 6 Mag 1 -> 2 Skl 6 -> 12 Spd 27 Luck 2 -> 4 Def 11 -> 22 Res 5 -> 11 Con 2 -> 6 Wt Growths 60% HP 0% Str 40% Mag 10% Skl 20% Spd 80% Luck 10% Def 40% Res No weapon levels Innate skills: Blessing (recover HP of adjacent units equal to user's magic), Galdrar (can use chants). How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 2-P. Is available for 2-2 and 2-E, then leaves. Rejoins in 3-11 after you get near the first set of barricades. Is unusable for 3-E. Leanne is the second Heron you get. Like Rafiel and Reyson, her usefulness is largely dictated on how much you like the idea of characters getting extra turns per player phase. She's never in direct comptetition with her siblings, except in Endgame, so as I said with Rafiel, she's your Heron for the chapters she's in and if you like Herons then that's great and if you don't then that's too bad for her. As for Leanne's personal traits...she can fly and has canto, but only 5 move untransformed and 6 transformed, so she still doesn't have a lot of mobility. She is always able to chant two people, but they must be on opposite sides of her (North/South or East/West) for it to work; if they're East/North, for example, she can only chant one of them. This applies transformed or not, so she can never chant all four people around her like her brothers can. Her Water affinity is a lovely thing to have, though she will have trouble finding a partner thanks to such strange availability. She also has the lowest starting level, which means it will take much longer for her to learn the non- Vigor chants, and you will notice that her durability is extra horrible, so keep her away from...well, everything. Yet another case of "What is there to say?" She's a Heron. If you like that quality in your units, then use her. Even consider using her if you don't like dancer/bard types. She has the weakest endgame (since she can't chant 4 people like her brothers) but if you want to use her there she should still do fine, and she's a nice asset whenever you have her. - Haar Level 11 Dragonmaster Wind Affinity Base stats 46 HP 23 Str 2 Mag 24 Skl 20 Spd 13 Luck 23 Def 7 Res 12 Con 42 Wt Growths 30% HP 70% Str 5% Mag 70% Skl 30% Spd 45% Luck 65% Def 20% Res Starts with A Axes and A Lances Innate skills: Cancel (when the user connects with a hit, the enemy may not get to counterattack) How to recruit: Talk to him with Marcia in 2-P. He is available in 2-E, then switches to the GMs in 3-2. Haar is pretty typical Dragonlord fare, except better. Monster strength/ skill/defense is wonderful, and his low HP growth is offset by a good base. On the other hand, his speed, luck, and resistance are all low - he actually has a good luck growth, but not quite enough to redeem his low base. Haar is also the only flier that the GMs have for a long time. He is the only one until 3-7, where Janaff and Ulki join, and he's the only beorc flier until 3-11, when you get Tanith and Sigrun. The GM maps make pretty good use of fliers as well, with lots of ledges and fences and things, so his flying comes in very hand, as does his high move. Haar has some doubling woes, but it kind of depends on how you level him. You should get a speedwing in 2-3, which Haar would love, and you can increase it with BEXP. If you can keep him higher-leveled (easy to do with his good base and the large GM exp pool) he...still might have trouble with doubling, but not as much. Of course, he has low caps either way, so the benefits of extra speed won't necessarily last. Either way, his evasion is meh but he doesn't need it on account of great defense and HP. Magic can pose a problem, although even then it's mostly just Thunder; Thunder gets a damage bonus against him, and the extra crit might be a problem against his low luck. Keep an eye out for those, but bear in mind that Haar can outmaneuver and occasionally OHKO sages. Cancel doesn't work all that great for Haar. Since it activates based on speed, and Haar is generaly lacking speed, you may want to remove it and give it to a faster character. Besides, Haar doesn't usually need to worry much about not getting attacked with all that def. Wind affinity is bad and Haar's mobility makes it difficult for him to find a partner anyway; then again, he doesn't really need anything that supports can provide. Basically, he's the tank what could fly. And he's really damn strong. And he has the doubling blues. And he gets a helmet of evil and gory death when he promotes. Fear the Haar. - Brom Level 2 Axe General Water Affinity Base stats 36 HP 19 Str 4 Mag 17 Skl 16 Spd 13 Luck 21 Def 9 Res 11 Con 21 Wt Growths 80% HP 40% Str 5% Mag 40% Skl 30% Spd 70% Luck 60% Def 25% Res Starts with C Axes and E swords, gains D Lances at 3rd tier. Innate skills: Disarm (May make enemy unequip their weapon) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 2-1. Can be used in 2-2 and 2-E. Joins the GMs in 3-2. Brom: The answer to all your walling needs [in part 2]. So Brom has lots of durability and not a whole lot of things that aren't durability. Early on he fares pretty well with high base strength and okay speed - enough that he's doubling some of the first tiers you're up against (although even that might depend on difficulty) and no matter what he's tanking well. His Luck makes him fairly crit-proof, although his poor speed prevents his evasion for ever being very good. In part 2, he does pretty well for himself offensively and defensively. Sadly, in parts 3 and 4 his offense really starts to drop. His skill is always good enough that he should have sufficient hit even with axes, but his strength starts to drop behind a bit and his speed falls out of doubling range with no real hope of ever catching up again. By the time BEXP is likely to be pulling it up, he has to face his terrible 30 speed cap. What's more, in part 3 he is placed in direct competition with the generally superior (and much faster) Gatrie, which further lowers the incentive to use Brom. Disarm is an interesting skill that allows you to make an enemy unequip their weapon. This means they can't counter for a while, which is nice, but also means you can have Heather (or later Sothe) steal that weapon, so it can provide a nice alternative to buying new weapons. It activates based on skill/2 though, so you should have someone else use it. His Water affinity is pretty cool and with his availability he shouldn't have any trouble finding a support partner. He has E swords initially for what I can only assume is comic effect; I recommend that you just ignore it, but if you want you can have Leanne or Nealuchi ferry over Eincia's Slim Sword from 2-P to 2-2, or wait until part 3 to buy him a bronze. He's always a pretty good tank (mostly defense wise, although he's got enough res and HP that he can handle magic well enough), but that's about all he's ever going to be. Use him when you need a wall, but don't rely too much on him for killing power. - Nephenee Level 1 Halberdier Wind Affinity Base stats 32 HP 15 Str 6 Mag 19 Skl 20 Spd 12 Luck 15 Def 14 Res 7 Con 12 Wt Growths 45% HP 35% Str 15% Mag 70% Skl 65% Spd 40% Luck 35% Def 45% Res Starts with B Lances Innate skills: Wrath (increases crit by 50 when HP fals beow 30%) How to recruit: Joins automatically in 2-1. Is usable in 2-2 and 2-E. Joins the GMs in 3-2. Nephenee is one of the more popular FE:RD characters, and also one of the evil little cases of a character who is goodish normally but great if she gobbles down a lot of BEXP. Her stats are very extreme. She has high speed, skill, and resistance, but shaky strength, defense, and HP. Her luck is pretty average, and her magic is somewhat above average so she does okay for Imbue. She typically has enough avo that her mediore defense is enough for her to get by, and she's generally doubling enough to make up for her meh strength, and as such she can be good. However, BEXP changes her a lot...if you're willing to spend it. Nephenee cap rams skill, speed, and res with ease (about halfway through tier 2), which means you can BEXP her strength and defense. She tends to only get one or the other, sadly (her HP and luck growths are higher and she won't likely reach either cap at second tier), so this only kind of half-solves the problem, but if she gains str over def then with all that extra HP/luck the def becomes less of an issue. Then at third tier she again caps skl and speed pretty quickly, although with her high res cap of 30 she might take a lot longer to reach that. BEXP may prove useful again here, although she'll have to cap HP, luck, or res before she can consistently start gaining strength or defense. Another thing about Nephenee is that she improves pretty drastically with transfers. She can easily reach skill and speed caps in PoR, which means she should cap them even sooner in RD, and you might be able to get her some str (or defense, but that's pushing it) which will help out too. I don't really like to bring up transfers, but I do think it's worth noting that Neph is one of the best candidates for it. An unfortunate counter-issue is Nephenee's first weapon, a Steel Greatlance, which pulls her speed down by three (is weighs 18 but Neph only has 15 base str) so at first she may struggle to double higher leveled/faster enemies. She shouldn't have much trouble finding a support, although Wind isn't in particularly high demand. Wrath is a pretty good skill for her since she's one of those kinda-but-not-really durable units, although once her defense or avoid starts getting good you may want to delegate that to a frailer unit. Nephenee is perhaps best described as a swordmaster with lances. She's got arguably the best endgame out of all the Wishblade users (and is by far the easiest of the 34+ speed Wishblade users to train) and she's got a load of potential, but you will want to keep an eye on her strength and defense. - Heather Level 7 Rogue Fire Affinity Base stats 32 HP 15 Str 9 Mag 21 Skl 25 Spd 16 Luck 10 Def 14 Res 7 Con 7 Wt Growths 40% HP 25% Str 20% Mag 50% Skl 70% Spd 75% Luck 30% Def 40% Res Starts with C Daggers Innate skills: Pass (can move through enemy units) How to recruit: Talk to her with Nephenee or Brom in 2-1. Is usable in 2-2 and 2-E. Joins the GMs in 3-2. Heather is pretty much the standard thief. She's got lotsa speed and lotsa luck and even good resistance and skill, but her attack power is lousy and she has poor durability on top of it. BEXP can improve her durability - she easily caps skl/spd/res at second tier and spd/luck/res at third, so you shouldn't have too much trouble pulling up her HP and maybe defense, but her strength basically sucks forever and even if she caps her cap is terrible. She does have a fire affinity to boost her offense a bit, and that's nice, but that's about it. So, in short, she doubles everything and has great evasion, but she can't take much punishment without BEXP and does lame damage pretty much regardless. BUT WAIT! Heather doesn't need combat, because she can steal things! And boy are there a lot of things she has sole claim to. Being the only thief you have in part 2 and for the GMs, Heather can get her hands on all sorts of shiny things that other can't, or make it easier to get a hold of them. Also, if you stick Disarm on someone she can even steal enemy weapons so you don't have to spend money on buying them (or as many)! And even if she never goes into combat she does provide a Fire affinity for someone - maybe for Nephenee, who could give Heather a bit of avo with the otherwise unspecial Wind? She also has Pass which lets her go through enemies, all the better for robbery. ....that's about it, really. Heather won't ever be anything special in combat, but she's great for your thieving needs. I wouldn't bother trying to train her except maybe to get some extra strength to steal heavier things, but definitely bring her along for taking items that aren't strictly hers. (note: Heather is the only thief that can be sent to 4-4, a map with many treasures. You could just use chest keys, but consider sending Heather with the Greil Army just in case). - Lucia Level 14 Swordmaster Earth Affinity Base stats 38 HP 18 Str 10 Mag 27 Skl 27 Spd 19 Luck 14 Def 15 Res 8 Con 8 Wt Growths 50% HP 25% Str 20% Mag 70% Skl 60% Spd 30% Luck 15% Def 50% Res Starts with A Swords Innate skills: Parity (negates all skills and stat bonuses related to tiles, supports, etc for character and opponent. Activated by command) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 2-2. Disappears until part 4 where she is forced with the Hawk Army (4-2 and 4-5) Lucia is kind of the Swordmaster version of Tauroneo. She's around for one early chapter where she's pretty good (albeit not superduperpowered) and then she disappears for an unreasonable amount of time, and by the time she shows back up she's still fine but not quite as noteworthy. Statistically, she's got goodish HP (goodish base & growth but low cap) and resistance, great skill and speed, above average magic, decent luck (low growth, respectable base), and poor strength and terrible defense. Coupled with her lowish availability, it can be hard to salvage her poor strength; the crit and doubling can make up for it, though, although she won't be as strong as the other SMs for a long time if ever. Her garbage defense, however, can be made up for between high speed, decent luck, and her avoid-boosting Earth affinity, though she can have trouble finding a partner - Elincia and Tibarn are her best choices, and I suppose Pelleas would work in a later playthrough. Parity works well in Endgame for her or pretty much anyone, so that's also a plus, and if you don't plan on using her you should at least remove that from her to give to another unit. Anyway, Lucia is pretty helpful in 2-2 but after that she's just a filler Swordmaster. The others turn out better with less effort (well, on harder difficulties Edward might take more), but between Earth and the 4-5 EXP pool, Lucia can serve as a respectable replacement. Just make sure to get her some BEXP to fix that strength. - Lethe Level 21 Cat Heaven Affinity Base stats 51 HP 9 -> 18 Str 6 -> 12 Mag 13 -> 26 Skl 12 -> 24 Spd 18 Luck 9 -> 18 Def 10 -> 20 Res 6 -> 11 Con 11 -> 31 Wt Growths 85% HP 35% Str 5% Mag 30% Skl 50% Spd 45% Luck 35% Def 20% Res Starts with A Strike No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the start of 2-2. Can be used in 2-E. Joins the GMs in 3-4 (but can't be used in 3-5). Lethe seems to be going for some odd kind of speedtank or something. Her growths aren't just overwhelming, but they're good for a laguz I guess. Her HP is great, and she's fairly fast and somewhat lucky. Her res growth is low but her base is pretty good, and her skill is much the same way. Her strength and defense are harder to look at. They're effectively the same - same base, same growth. Her strength eventually pulls ahead once she caps defense at 14 -> 28. The problem is that 18 base defense is more valuable than 18 base strength, especially when you're locked to one weapon that isn't very powerful either. So basically, Lethe is fairly fast and fairly sturdy, but rather weak. Lethe has another problem, though - she does fine in part 2, but by the time she rejoins in part 3, those stats aren't really all that good. 24 speed is still maybe enough to double, but not as reliably, and the things she is doubling reliably have enough def that she's doing low damage anyway. She's still reasonably tanky, but with her difficulty getting kills (and the presence of other tanks that don't have to transform, and the presence of the supertank Mordecai, and the stunted laguz EXP gain in general) she is going to have a tough time growing and consequently a tough time staying durable. Of course, if you do keep her up with everyone else, she'll still be contributing some, and if you can raise her strike levels they will help out her offense. She also provides a Heaven affinity, although not many GMs will really care. Still, Lethe is one of those laguz who is meant to be trained, and between what a pain they are to train with the aforementioned EXP woes and the fact that Royals are just going to be dominating her anyway, it's sort of hard to justify. I'd say use her for part 2, but unless you can get her S strike or are willing to pump her up with some BEXP, that's the extent of her usefulness. - Mordecai Level 16 Tiger Water Affinity Base stats 57 HP 14 -> 28 Str 1 -> 2 Mag 9 -> 18 Skl 9 -> 18 Spd 15 Luck 16 -> 32 Def 4 -> 8 Res 18 -> 28 Con 27 -> 48 Wt Growths 90% HP 35% Str 10% Mag 25% Skl 15% Spd 80% Luck 45% Def 15% Res Starts with A Strike Innate skills: Smite (push a unit 2 spaces) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the start of 2-2. Is available for 2-E. Joins the GMs in 3-4, but is unavailable for 3-5. Mordecai is one of the tankiest guys you'll ever see, and he's sitting at little ol' level 16. He has great strength and amazing defense and HP. That is about all he's got, though...18 spd isn't doubling much and with his paltry 15% growth he's pretty much never doubling anything, and some faster or later enemies will be doubling him. But with 32 base defense and 57 HP it's hard to really care. He does have poor res, and should watch out for fire magic, but otherwise he's virtually unkillable. His power is nice, although the lack of doubling makes his strike even harder to raise so it will start to fall a bit later on. Water affinity further enhances his already insane durability and can give a bit more to someone else. The attack power is nice too. Smite works great on such a huge guy as well; it's not a skill I find much use for, but I won't deny that there are plenty of uses for it. Not sure what else to say, really. Like Lethe, he's going to be outclassed eventually by Royals, but he's a damn fine tank forever (well, until Endgame at least) even without much training. He even has some decent offense to go with it, even if he won't be ORKOing much. He may get lost in the shuffle of higher level/Royal laguz later on, but he's a pretty great tank for parts 2 and 3. - Geoffrey Level 15 Lance Paladin Fire Affinity Base stats 37 HP 24 Str 8 Mag 23 Skl 20 Spd 19 Luck 18 Def 15 Res 11 Con 26 Wt Growths 60% HP 50% Str 10% Mag 60% Skl 35% Spd 30% Luck 30% Def 55% Res Starts with A lances, gains C Bows at 3rd tier Innate skills: Paragon (doubles EXP gain) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 2-3. Comes to 2-E after around 8 turns pass. Available in 3-9, then leaves until 4-5. And yet another character who disappears without warning for a while, it's Geoffrey! Captain of a team of people with low availability to begin with! Geoffrey's stats are kind of subpar. He's got good strength and skill and his HP starts a bit low but turns out well, and his resistance is nice. He also suffers from lowish speed and kinda laggy defense (and luck, but his base is good enough there). So he hits fairly hard, but has trouble doubling and has passable but not all that noteworthy durability. ...In theory. In practice, howewver, Geoffrey is so high-leveled vs the enemies he faces in 2-3 and possibly 2-E that he's pretty much crushing everything. In 3-9 He might not be one-rounding some of the higher leveled enemies, but even then he's doing pretty well all around. Then in 4-5 he comes back and it's then that he suffers from his stats. As with many others, Geoffrey is a classic case of "good affinity, bad support partner". With his lack of availability, not many will be all that interested in having him as a support partner, but if he can find somebody (and is going to endgame) then his fire can provide a nice offense boost. His Paragon is great, but not for him - he's already overleveled in part 2, and in 3-9 you want to take it away from him so that you can use it in his absence. Basically, he's another short-term character. Great in part 2, pretty good in 3-9, and then in part 4 and Endgame he's below average. - Kieran Level 11 Axe Paladin Wind Affinity Base Stats 41 HP 21 Str 6 Mag 20 Skl 20 Spd 16 Luck 18 Def 11 Res 11 Con 36 Wt Growths 75% HP 60% Str 15% Mag 40% Skl 30% Spd 30% Luck 60% Def 25% Res Starts with A Axes, gains C Swords at 3rd tier Innate skills: Gamble (halves hit but doubles crit) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 2-3. Comes to 2-E after around 8 turns pass. Is available for 3-9, then joins the GMs in 3-11. Kieran is overall not too different from Geoffrey, except he's around some more. He's still high level for 2-3 and 2-E and is pretty much dominating in those chapters, and still does fairly well in 3-9. He can even be somewhat useful through parts 3 and 4, though he's ultimately not much for Endgame. Statwise, he has great HP, strength, and defense. His skill is alright, not great but enough to hit reliably, and he has decent magic, though not quite enough to make him stand out as an Imbue candidate. He is also pretty slow and has low res and below average luck, so he's not much for dodging. In other words, he's tanky power paladin. Wind affinity isn't doing much for him, and none of the other CRKs really care so he might have trouble finding a support. Gamble is pretty worthless on him, but remove it and consider passing it on to a Swordmaster or Sniper. He's just another tank. A high mobility tank, and a decently leveled one by CRK standards, so he can be useful throughout the game. But between the competition he has with so many other paladins and his low speed, you should probably pass on him for Endgame. - Makalov Level 7 Blade Paladin Thunder Affinity Base stats 37 HP 18 Str 5 Mag 17 Skl 18 Spd 20 Luck 17 Def 9 Res 10 Con 35 Wt Growths 55% HP 40% Str 15% Mag 40% Skl 75% Spd 45% Luck 50% Def 25% Res Starts with A Swords, gains C Axes at 3rd tier No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 2-3. Comes to 2-E after around 8 turns pass. Is available for 3-9, then joins the GMs in 3-11 I'm sorry, but I have to complain about somthing here: Why, oh god WHY, does Makalov have the higest speed growth of the beorc? Combined with a speed cap of 33? I mean, really? So anyway, Makalov is pretty fast. Lowish speed cap hurts, but he's got some decent doubling ability if trained (he isn't doubling as reliably at first but gets there pretty quickly). He's also pretty durable, with good HP and def, and high luck and speed make for good evasion. His resistance is pretty meh but overall he's fairy hard to kill. On the other hand, he has rather laggy offense with kinda average str/skl. And being one of the lower leveled CRKs, he has a problem getting up to speed in levels, and he also suffers from the typical mediocre Paladin Endgame, so he isn't necessarily worth actively training or giving Paragon. Sword spec hurts him too, further dampening his mediocre damage output, although it at least means he should be connecting with hits. I wish I had more to say, but I really don't. He's kind of generic forever being decent but not noteworthy for the CRKs and then underleveled with the GMs and then decent but not noteworthy for Endgame. He's an effective all-purpose tank, but not much else. - Astrid Level 2 Bow Paladin Wind Affinity Base stats 33 HP 13 Str 8 Mag 16 Skl 15 Spd 17 Luck 10 Def 14 Res 7 Con 31 Wt Growths 55% HP 40% Str 20% Mag 45% Mag 40% Spd 70% Luck 30% Def 50% Res Starts with B Bows, gains C Lances at 3rd tier Innate skills: Paragon (doubles EXP gain) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 2-3. Comes to 2-E after around 8 turns. Is available for 3-9, then joins the GMs in 3-11. Astrid is pretty much a mounted Leonardo, but without Lughnasadh. She does have some good HP, although that's offset by a terrible defense base with a below average growth. Then again, she's got good res and being a bow user she doesn't have to worry too much about counters, so that's not as a big a deal as it is for others. However, she's most similar to Leo in that she's a purely offense oriented class/character who has pretty lackluster offense. Her skill is sufficient, but her strength is bad and her speed isn't much better. She has a lot of trouble doubling and doesn't do much damage either way. She does have two major advantages going for her, though. One is Paragon, which doubles her EXP gain. Now, with her meh growths, that doesn't seem like a very big deal, but it does pull her out of her level deficit quickly. It also can be combined with Blossom to give Astrid the combination of enhanced stat gains AND extra EXP gain, so her stats have a better chance of getting good. The other advantage is her class - while most Paladins have rather bland caps, Astrid's are pretty respectable and she also gets to use the godly Double Bow. Sadly, even an ideal Astrid is losing to the other Double Bow candidates, given how overpowered the Marksman class is, and she's contributing very little to the CRKs with her terrible bases. She can turn out pretty good with either Blossom or some tier 3 BEXP, but otherwise you're best off just stealing her Paragon for someone else. - Danved (OR IS HE?) Level 9 Halberdier Fire Affinity Base stats 39 HP 17 Str 8 Mag 23 Skl 21 Spd 18 Luck 15 Def 12 Res 12 Con 18 Wt Growths 75% HP 40% Str 20% Mag 30% Skl 45% Spd 60% Luck 45% Def 25% Res Starts with S lances No innate skills How to recruit: View the "Calill's Shop" base conversation in 2-3. Comes to 2-E after around 8 turns. Is available in 3-9, then joins the GMs in 3-11. Danved is kind of hard to judge. He seems like he's supposed to be the in-between Halberdier, more speed oriented than Aran but more strength oriented than Nephenee. Unfortunately, his lowish strength and defense bases more or less mean he won't get stronger or more durable than Nephenee until very late. He does have massive HP, which is a nice bonus, and his speed is enough that he can double most of the time in 2-3, 2-E, and possibly 3-9. For some strange reason he has the lowest skill growth of all beorc, despite being a high skill class, but his high base makes up for it. He does do pretty well in the CRK chapters. He's got good evasion and he's doubling most enemies, so he should be doing lots of damage. Maybe not quite conistently ORKOing like Geoffrey and Kieran, but still compotent. When he joins up with the GMs, though, he may lag a bit (and in particular has to compete with the generally superior and probably much higher level Neph). He has a decent enough Endgame, though he falls short of the mysterious and charming 34 speed cap. And like the other CRKs, there's not much more to say. Competent for the CRK chapters, okayish after. He does offer a fire affinity for someone, and high magic = Imbue fun, but that's about it. - Calill Level 6 Fire Sage Dark Affinity Base stats 32 HP 9 Str 19 Mag 18 Skl 18 Spd 16 Luck 11 Def 17 Res 7 Con 7 Wt Growths 35% HP 25% Str 45% Mag 60% Skl 55% Spd 55% Luck 15% Def 50% Res Starts with A Fire, B Thunder and B Wind. Gains E staves at 3rd tier. Innate skills: Nihil (negates enemy's combat related skills) How to recruit: View "Calill" base conversation in 2-E. Is available for 3-9, then joins the GMs in 3-11. Calill is one of the better mages for offense. Fire magic packs the most punch (besides Dark, exclusive to Pelleas) and while her magic isn't high it's still decent and she has good skill and - GASP - good speed! Well, okay, her base is actually kind of average, but her growth is good. She also has good luck, which makes her one of the only mages to have significant evasion. Unfortunately, she has completely awful durability. Her HP and defense bases are tolerable for a level 6 Sage, but her growths are atrocious, so she's going to be relying a lot on her evasion. She does at least have good res, but that can only help so much. At least she can attack from afar, so the defense deficit doesn't just destroy her, but it does hurt pretty bad. And like all CRKs, Calill has availability issues. She doesn't even get 2-3 like the others, although she's around for all of 2-E. She's perhaps the best Paragon candidate in 3-9, since you should be taking Geoffrey's away from him, although Marcia is pretty stiff competition for it. Even so, she's going to be low leveled by the time she reaches the GMs, and she doesn't really do much for the CRKs either - having a res targeter is nice, but she can't quite double unless she got some levels in 2-E, and you really need to be careful that she doesn't get attacked much. One thing Calill does really have going in her favor, though, is her Endgame. She's one of the best Endgame sages - probably THE best, although it largely depends on if you can get her some levels. Again, she has a decent claim on Paragon, but if she doesn't get it she'll really struggle. The reason I bring up her Endgame, though, is that she gets Rexflame. Rexflame boosts spd by 3 points, enough for her to surpass the splendidly loveable 34 speed that allows her to double some bosses and maybe other enemies that others can't. Combined with a decent magic score and evasion, she can perform pretty well there. It's just getting her to Endgame that's tough, thanks to her leveling problems. She has a Dark affinity, which is pretty desirable. Nihil doesn't do much until Endgame but there it's a nice thing to have, so even if you aren't set on using her make sure you strip Nihil from her and give it to an Endgame character. She also joins with a Meteor, which can prove handy - just make sure to take it away from her in 3-9 so she doesn't waste it in 3-10 as an NPC. ...Wow. Despite being a CRK, I had a lot to say about her. So anyway, she is the training sage - not too hot at first, but if you can pull her levels up she can perform pretty well. - Ike Level 11 Hero Earth Affinity Base stats 44 HP 24 Str 2 Mag 28 Skl 23 Spd 14 Luck 21 Def 7 Res 12 Con 13 Wt Growths 65% HP 55% Str 10% Mag 60% Skl 35% Spd 30% Luck 40% Def 15% Res Starts with S Swords, gains A Axes at 3rd tier No innate skills, but gains Nihil at 3rd tier (Still takes capacity) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the start of 3-P The leader of the Greil Mercenaries, Ike is also one of the best units in the game. He's got some amazing bases, with enough speed to double just about everything except maybe swordies consistently and enough def/HP to take a lot of abuse and enough strength/skill to pack quite a wallop and hit all the time. His luck, resistance, and magic all suck (and will suck forever), so he does need to keep an eye out for mages, and Thunder mages in particular since they have that pesky little crit bonus, but his speed gives him some at least okay evasion and he's physically tanking pretty well. His growths are actually kind of low, but allocated in a way that works well for him. He has good HP, strength, and skill, and respectable defense. His speed growth is a little low, though; with his high base he should be doubling pretty conistently throughout the game, but it might lag just enough that he wants a speedwing or something (you can also BEXP it once he caps str/skl). And his luck and res and magic suck. He also has two prf weapons. The first, Ettard, is a fairly powerful crit boosting weapon, great for early on. The second, Ragnell, he gets at the start of 3-11 and it's just amazing. Powerful, accurate, 1-2 range, and boosts his defense by five. Yum. Actually, it is exactly the same as Alondite (one of the SS swords), but locked to Ike and usable much earlier. Ike's Earth is much loved, of course, and he can take his pick of whoever he wants to support. He doesn't really need any bonuses himself. He has no innate skills but gets Nihil when he promotes, and should keep a hold of that since he's forced to (and excellent in) Endgame, where that skill is quite beneficial. Also bear in mind that he has a forced promotion after 3-E. Ike is just a great unit. Even if he weren't forced, I'd always use him. - Mist Level 1 Cleric Water Affinity Base stats 28 HP 8 Str 13 Mag 13 Skl 15 Spd 16 Luck 7 Def 16 Res 5 Con 5 Wt Growths 40% HP 25% Str 45% Mag 55% Skl 50% Spd 70% Luck 25% Def 40% Res Starts with C Swords and B Staves Innate sills: Miracle (may halve the damage of an otherwise lethal blow) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the start of 3-P Man, it's a good thing Mist can heal, because her stats suuuuuuuuck. Okay, maybe that's not fair, but her bases at least are just gross. She has barely existent attack power and concrete durability (her res is good, at least), and low skl/spd, and even low magic! Granted, the low durability is to be expected from a healer, but those other things are hard to forgive. Her luck at least gives a bit of evasion, I guess, but when you're getting doubled by almost everything, that's not enough. Thankfully, her growths are better. Her HP, strength, and defense are bad forever, but her magic and res growths are alright and she has good skill and speed growths and excellent luck. The speed in particular is nice because it means she can escape her getting doubled issues without TOO much trouble, and between it and her luck she gets enough avoid to start making up for her low defense and HP. Mist also has Florete, an absurdly overpowered prf sword. It is kind of a mini-Ragnell, having great attack power, hit, crit, and 1-2 range. Sadly, even with this she has poor offense and it really only serves to make her capable of finishing off weakened enemies. Water Affinity is great (and she's the only GM who has it, although Brom and Mordecai join pretty soon and provide it as well), and healing boosts support points a lot, so she should have no trouble finding a support partner. Mist herself would love some evasion and maybe defense, so Thunder or Earth or possibly Light would benefit her a lot. Miracle is kind of nice (and activates based on luck, which Mist has), although it should not be depended on. Mist also has one more move than other casters, and gains a horse after promotion, so she's got the overall best mobility except for Elincia as far as healers go. So as I said with Laura, and as I will soon say with Rhys...Mist is a healer. Mist is only a healer. And Mist should get whatever credit you give for being a healer. She can become an okay combatant with a lot of effort and leveling, but at Endgame she's pretty much relegated back to just being another staff user. - Titania Level 16 Axe Paladin Light Affinity Base stats 36 HP 25 Str 10 Mag 22 Skl 21 Spd 19 Luck 20 Def 14 Res 8 Con 33 Wt Growths 60% HP 60% Str 15% Mag 55% Skl 50% Spd 40% Luck 20% Def 30% Res Starts with S Axes, gains C Swords at 3rd tier Innate skills: Counter (may cause enemy to take half the damage they deal) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-P. Titania is still a high level Paladin like she was in PoR, but this time she has good bases. Her growths are somewhat less special, but even then all of her offense oriented ones are high; having 50+% in str/skl/spd is great. Her durability is less impressive, although her bases are enough that she won't have any particular durability problems for a while. She does suffer from typical Paladin issues. Her mobility gets screwed in a few chapters like 3-4 and 3-7, and she has below average caps, although 33 spd is at least enough to double a lot of things even if she can't double the nastier bosses. But even so, her offense is solid throughout the game, and she handles herself pretty well overall. While her durability starts to lag a little, her Light affinity helps make up for it. She shouldn't have too much trouble finding a support partner, as long as they can put up with her high move (and tendency to get stuck). Counter is pretty pointlesss in my opinion, especially on a character with such high offense to begin with, but it might help out when her durability starts to lag. Titania has a great start and remains at least good up until Endgame (and even there she's passable), If you need some extra offense, Titania is a great choice. - Soren Level 5 Wind Sage Dark Affinity Base stats 28 HP 9 Str 23 Mag 21 Skl 18 Spd 11 Luck 9 Def 21 Res 6 Con 6 Wt Growths 40% HP 25% Str 80% Mag 60% Skl 35% Spd 35% Luck 25% Def 70% Res Starts with A Wind, B Thunder and B Fire. Gains E Staves at 3rd tier Innate skills: Adept (may grant an additional attack) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-P Soren is here to remind us what a caster's bases SHOULD be. Excuse me while I glare intently at Mist. ...right, so anyway. Soren also suffers from poor def/HP bases and a low str base (but he has enough that AS loss won't ever be an issue, so that works) and his speed is kind of average, and his luck is low. But on the other hand, his resistance, skill, and magic are all excellent. His growths pretty much follow this trend as well. Soren can easily cap mag/skl/res by level 10, which sets him up for a lot of BEXP use to boost his otherwise laggy spd/luck/HP and maybe even his str/def. Admittedly, Soren is fairly reliant on BEXP; otherwise he will have a lot of trouble doubling (even with the BEXP he struggles some thanks to the low 23 speed cap, so it's not really until promotion where he can double reliably) and will have low enough avo and durability that he can't really handle being attacked. He also requires a pretty large sum, and wants it soon since he caps so early; problem is, you don't necessarily have the EXP he needs, so you will need to hold him back for a little while. That said, he can be a good unit if he gets the BEXP, it's just the classic case of "does he DESERVE it?" Dark affinity is pretty good, and he's got 10 support partners from the beginning, most of whom wouldn't mind some extra attack and evasion. Adept is nice when it activates, but it activates based on speed, and Soren will never have enough to get it to activate all that often, so I recommend that you hand it over to someone who is faster, like Shinon or Mia. Getting staves at third tier is nice (especially with his high magic), but his inability to reach S rank with them makes it just a nice bonus instead of something he should be actively building up. Soren's kind of hard to judge. He is either okay but unspecial forever without the BEXP, or pretty good with it; either way his Endgame is lacking as it is with most Sages (althoug he's still one of the better Sages if you want to take one; the only real competition he has is Calill). So again, it's just a matter of deciding if you think the BEXP input he wants is worth the damage/ durability output he gets. - Oscar Level 12 Lance Paladin Earth Affinity Base stats 38 HP 20 Str 7 Mag 22 Skl 21 Spd 18 Luck 17 Def 13 Res 11 Con 36 Wt Growths 50% HP 35% Str 20% Mag 65% Skl 60% Spd 55% Luck 30% Def 20% Res Starts with A Lances, gains C Bows at 3rd tier No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-P Oscar is your second choice for a Paladin with the GMs, and he's the more speed oriented of the two. He has more accuracy and evasion and doubling potential, but less def/res and a lot less strength. To look at his stats without the comparison to Titania, Oscar has good HP and luck with great speed and skill, though his speed is marred by low caps. His defense is average, maybe slightly below, and his resistance is about the same. His strength is his biggest problem, with a slightly below average base/ growth. Oscar does have some BEXP potential, and it can help his strength woes. He's a character who is best BEXPed as soon as he caps speed and skill (maybe in addition to luck at third tier); he should cap those easily as a Paladin, but struggles to cap anything else in time for BEXP to make a difference. Earth affinity it great and complements his speed-based stat spread well. He should have no trouble finding a partner, though his mobility means he may not be in range all the time. Speaking of mobility, he suffers from the same movement screwage in the chapters that Titania does, though he does always reap the benefits of Canto and usually 9 move. He's one of the easiest Paladins to train, and has a good base level on top of it. Doubling semi-reliably (less so on HM, of course) and having decent offense and defense is nice, and Earth saves him from total obscurity. His caps and lackluster growths inhibit his Endgame performance, but he's decent to good for the rest of the game. - Boyd Level 8 Warrior Fire Affinity Base stats 45 HP 22 Str 1 Mag 20 Skl 18 Spd 13 Luck 15 Def 8 Res 12 Con 13 Wt Growths 80% HP 65% Str 5% Mag 45% Skl 45% Spd 40% Luck 50% Def 10% Res Starts with A Axes No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-P Boyd is a pretty solid Warrior. Massive HP and great strength, coupled with good defense and surprisingly decent speed and skill? Yes, please. His luck is less impressive but not quite so low as you might expect, and his res and magic are garbage. His bases aren't actually all that great, except for his HP (which is excellent) and his strength. Actually, his skill is pretty good too. His speed is low enough that he doesn't double much, and his defense base isn't notable. The speed is definitely the main issue; between it and his luck he won't be dodging often, and the lack of doubling hampers his offense. His growths are generaly good enough to make up for it, but you will have to put up with an average performance until then. Boyd does benefit from BEXP, but only at third tier; he might get a level or two out of it at second if he manages to cap HP/Str/Skl, and that might in turn get him him a speed or two, but it's only towards mid tier 3 that he is reliably capping things (he should get HP/str/def without much trouble). After that, he can easily get the extra speed he needs to hit 34 for maximum damage output. Boyd's fire affinity just raises his damage even more, making for a pretty powerful character. He doesn't stand out at first (except for bringing a Killer Axe), but he can become quite the powerhouse, and he's one of the best Endgame classes to boot. I think of him as an inverted Titania - weaker starts, but better ending. - Rolf Level 1 Sniper Wind Affinity Base Stats 32 HP 17 Str 3 Mag 20 Skl 19 Spd 13 Luck 13 Def 9 Res 6 Con 7 Wt Growths 85% HP 75% Str 10% Mag 45% Skl 45% Spd 35% Luck 35% Def 20% Res Starts with B Bows No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-P. So, um, you know...WOW. I think Rolf stole Boyd's growths. Despite the fact that Boyd is a Warrior, Rolf is winning in the Warrior's key stats, str and HP; in fact, Rolf ties for best str and HP growths of all the beorc! That's really something. He has pretty solid bases for his level, but he's still at a very low level comparatively. His strength, skill, and speed are all fine, but he won't be doubling for a while and he's doing less damage that just about everyone except Mist. Thankfully, his growths in offense are either solid (skl/spd) or WHAT THE HELL IS THIS (str), so he can eventually become a powerhouse. Wind isn't doing much (especially for Rolf himself), so he might have a little trouble finding someone who wants to support him. Pairing him with a backliner is probably your best bet. He does suffer from the typical archer issues - namely, lack of enemy phase action notably decreases EXP gain, which is particularly problematic given his low level. And he does have one other issue; the presence of Shinon, who is completely outclassing him for a long time. If you can train him, he does have an excellent Endgame (high str+34 spd+ Double Bow+???=profit) but the problem lies in the actual getting him trained part. As a final note, I should mention that Rolf does benefit noticeably from transfers. If he can get strength and speed, it will go a long way in boosting his offense, making him a lot better a lot sooner. - Shinon Level 13 Sniper Thunder Affinity Base stats 43 HP 21 Str 7 Mag 28 Skl 24 Spd 15 Luck 20 Def 14 Res 10 Con 11 Wt Growths 50% HP 40% Str 15% Mag 70% Skl 65% Spd 30% Luck 45% Def 20% Res Starts with S Bows Innate skills: Provoke (makes enemies more likely to attack this character) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-P The final Marksman, and will you just look at those lovely bases! Enough speed to double most enemies, reasonable strength and massive skill, and that HP/def/res is amazing for a unit who doesn't even fight on the front lines. Shinon is not only fairly powerful, but can serve as a tank! Of course, since he can't counter without crossbows, you don't necessarily WANT him to tank, but it's nice to have the option. His growths continue this trend. He has excellent skill and speed, good def/HP/str, but low luck. His res growth is also pretty low, but his base keeps it reasonable for most of the game. He does come to have a slight str deficit towards his later levels, though that can be negated with some BEXP. Thunder affinity further increases his already high durability, and is something a lot of GMs could use, so no problems there. Provoke is awkward on an archer but Shinon tanks well enough that it works; I would still suggest moving it to another high durability unit, but it can stay put and still work. Shinon is just good. He starts strong and ends strong and stays strong in the middle. He suffers from the usual archer drawbacks, but much less so than Leo and Rolf thanks to his high starting level. Definitely worth considering for all your Double Bow needs. - Gatrie Level 10 Lance General Light Affinity Base stats 44 HP 25 Str 5 Mag 18 Skl 20 Spd 15 Luck 24 Def 11 Res 13 Con 23 Wt Growths 50% HP 60% Str 5% Mag 45% Skl 60% Spd 30% Luck 60% Def 35% Res Starts with A Lances and B Axes, gains D Swords at 3rd tier No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automaticaly at the beginning of 3-P And now, Gatrie! He's a general who manages to have high spd, str, and def. If that doesn't spell "broken" then I don't know what does, besides b-r-o-k-e-n. He even has respectable resistance (certainly not as much as Meg or even Tauroneo, but it's sufficient) and skill. His HP growth is actually the lowest of the Marshalls, though it's still good overall (he starts 1 point away from capping at tier 2, for starters). He does have low luck and magic, but he still won't be getting critted overmuch and magic is magic. That's not to say Gatrie doesn't have his problems. He suffers the usual crapy mobility of the armored unit, and while his speed growth is unreasonably high for his class, his speed caps still hold him back. He can double some enemies initially, and should start doubling consistently for a bit, and then stop when he caps, and then start again, and then stop again, and arglebargle blahblahblah. What I'm trying to say is he can double a lot (and with high str he's got great damage output) but you'll want to promote him pretty quickly. He's one of the best candidates for the Master Crown you get in 3-3, but if you would prefer to get him all of his levels for that extra def/skl/luck/res then go ahead and use BEXP instead. Or just wait for it to happen naturally, but don't expect as much doubling out of him. He does well with BEXP since he should easily cap HP/str/spd at second tier and str/spd/def at second, so you can pull up his HP/res/skl. Light gives a bonus to his already great defense, and lets him share some durability with another character. As with all GMs, he should have no problems finding a unit who wants to support him. Gatrie has some excellent growths and a superior performance in both offense and defense. He may (or may not, depending on how you play it) have doubling issues for a while, and he WILL have doubling issues in Endgame where his class starts to screw him over, but for most of the game he is a powerful offensive force and he always makes for a great wall. - Rhys Level 3 Bishop Fire Affinity Base stats 27 HP 8 Str 23 Mag 16 Skl 14 Spd 21 Luck 7 Def 24 Res 9 Con 9 Wt Growths 40% HP 25% Str 65% Mag 35% Skl 35% Spd 60% Luck 20% Def 75% Res Starts with C Light and A Staves No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-P Wow. I almost feel bad for whinging about Mist's bases now. As in PoR, Rhys is an extremely polar character - and why not, he is a healer after all...he has poor HP and defense, great magic and resistance and luck, and kinda average skill. He also has terrible speed; he's getting doubled by almost everything at first, but to be fair Mist is also. The thing is, Mist at least had a decent speed growth, while Rhys has a below average one, so he's in danger of getting doubled...well, for a long time. Of course, durability doesn't matter to healers, right? Well, not ideally, but there are some instances where you might need to put a healer in danger to save someone else, and Rhys really can't do that. On the other hand, his high magic means he is healing more than Mist and also has better Physic range; whetheror not Mist's horse she eventually gets can offset that is up to you. Then again, either way you have to actually have Physics... Rhys can conceivably make good use of BEXP, but it's generally a waste. His biggest problem stats are def (which is his lowest growth so BEXP isn't reliably giving him def until he caps five other things) and spd (which he has terrible caps in anyway so BEXP is only marginally helpful). High magic helps for offense, although Light magic is weak and his magic cap (particularly his tier 2 cap of 25) are lacking. Fire affinity can help offset this, though, and plenty fGMs wouldn't mind some extra power, plus healing gets lotsa support points. So I'm going to repeat myself again and say Rhys is a good healer and a less than stellar combatant. I personally prefer Mist, but there's no real rhyme or reason to that preference; at the end of the day they're both healers, each with an advantage over the other (Mist has speed, Rhys has magic), and using one or even both is beneficial as long as you aren't careless with how you place them. Give Rhys a try, and if you're pleased with his performance ten he will make a fine healer for your team, but I recommend that you drop him once you get to Endgame. - Mia Level 7 Swordmaster Fire Affinity Base stats 34 HP 17 Str 5 Mag 26 Skl 28 Spd 18 Luck 13 Def 8 Res 7 Con 7 Wt Growths 70% HP 45% Str 15% Mag 60% Skl 65% Spd 35% Luck 40% Def 25% Res Starts with A Swords Innate skills: Vantage (character gets first strike even on enemy phase) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-P Mia is the fourth swordmaster you come across, and she's got the stats of the traditional male swordmaster and the breasts of a traditional FE female. ...but anyway, her bases are pretty good. Good HP and luck and WHAAAAAAAAT skl/spd. Her def and strength are a bit low, but she still manages okay with almost reliable evasion and incessant doubling. Her growths work quite well for her also, with goodish str/def and great skl/spd/HP. Her luck and res lag, but not too horribly and she has a high luck base anyway. BEXP serves Mia quite well, too. She should cap HP, skl and spd with ease at second tier, and at third she has a great shot at capping FIVE stats (HP/ str/skl/spd/def) about midway through, so BEXP will easily fix her luck and res and even her magic deficit if you care enough to feed it to her. Honestly, she's performing great even without it, but since I MUST! CAP! EVERYTHING! I decided to point it out anyway. Fire Affinity is great for Mia and can boost her into having more offense than even Edward, plus other GMs are pyromaniacs who would like a fire affinity for a friend. Vantage isn't near as good as it was in PoR - it now activates based on speed instead of activating every time - but Mia is still the best candidate for it so might as well leave it with her and watch her occasionally critblick an enemy on enemy phase before they even get to attack her. Mia has some great offense, and coupled with high speed and good luck has great evasion as well - it's not quite reliable enough to make up for her low def base and cap, although if you support her with an avo booster then she won't have to worry about getting hit hardly at all. She lags a little at first (though not as much as some others) and turns out quite well. I definitely recommend her. - Ranulf Level 26 Cat Wind Affinity Base stats 55 HP 14 -> 28 Str 6 -> 12 Mag 16 -> 32 Skl 15 -> 30 Spd 23 Luck 13 -> 36 Def 10 -> 20 Res 9 -> 14 Con 14 -> 34 Wt Growths 70% HP 30% Str 15% Mag 40% Skl 35% Spd 55% Luck 15% Def 10% Res Starts with A Strike No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-4. Is unusable in 3-5 Ranulf has got some nice bases. His HP, strength, and defense are all nice and his skill and speed are excellent. His res and luck are also pretty good. He should be doubling everything and doing respectable damage per hit, and with the constant doubling he shouldn't have much trouble further improving his attack via strike level. His growths are less impressive...his skill is fine but his speed is kinda average and his strength is slightly low, and his def/res are bad. His only good growths are HP and luck. That said, his bases are high enough that he still might pull off capping some things, and even if he doesn't he will still have sufficient durability with good evasion and he should be doubling forever, and his strike level can mitigate any strength problems he might have. In other words, his growths are bad but ultimately not all that relevant. Wind affinity is wind. He shouldn't have trouble finding a partner, it's just that most people don't care about his affinity. Being a cat laguz hurts since they have a particularly nasty transformation gauge, but Ranulf himself has good enough stats that he can make do, especially if you let him have some Olivi Grass. He gets as much out of BEXP levels as he does normal ones (maybe more, even) so don't be afraid to level him that way, just try not to let his strike level suffer for it. He's a good character, you just need to put up with his status as a cat laguz. He can be a long term character if you want to put in the effort; otherwise, I recommend you at least put him to some use in part 3. - Kyza Level 18 Tiger Light Affinity Base stats 55 HP 10 -> 20 Str 3 -> 6 Mag 10 -> 20 Skl 11 -> 22 Spd 14 Luck 10 -> 20 Def 5 -> 10 Res 12 -> 22 Con 21 -> 42 Wt Growths 85% HP 40% Str 5% Mag 45% Skl 35% Spd 50% Luck 40% Def 15% Res Starts with A Strike Innate skills: Quickclaw (may deal damage to an enemy who attacks from afar) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-4. Is unusable in 3-5 Kyza is a lowbie laguz, which means he requires active training to be useful. This in itself is pretty damning, given how much harder it is to train laguz than Beorc, but let's have a look and see how it works out. His bases are bad. He's fairly durable, with high HP and good def, but he's only tanking when he's transformed. He also has surprisingly...well, awful offense. He has 30 attack power (20 str + 10 weapon) which is definitely not good (for reference, a base level Rolf with a steel bow has 27 mt) and can only fight transformed AND only has one range outside of the unreliable Quickclaw. His speed base is decent for a Tiger of his level but not enough for him to double much of anything. He does have somewhat decent growths, at least. Nice skill, def, luck, and decent str coupled with High HP makes for some nice physical durability and at least decent offense. His speed, however...well, the growth is fine but between his semi-low base and his poor cap, his doubling woes are many. Oh yeah and his res is also there. It's lowish. So Kyza is mostly a tank, and he's got the Light to back it up, and Quickclaw to help his offense (?), but his doubling issues and poor strength base screw him out of having much offense at any time. He can have a midgame arc of usefulness, but he's never anything special and he's perhaps the worst Endgame class of them all, so he's pulled back down again into obscurity. - Lyre Level 17 Cat Thunder Affinity Base stats 47 HP 7 -> 14 Str 6 -> 12 Mag 11 -> 22 Skl 11 -> 22 Spd 16 Luck 7 -> 14 Def 8 -> 16 Res 6 -> 11 Con 11 -> 31 Wt Growths 50% HP 35% Str 10% Mag 65% Skl 70% Spd 50% Luck 20% Def 30% Res Starts with A Strike No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-4. Is unusable in 3-5 Wow, I feel really guilty about bashing for Kyza's bases now. I'm sorry, but Lyre's bases are just appalling. Horrible strength, below average defense. Decent HP and luck, decent spd and skl for her level (but not enough base speed to double most things), and she does have some okay res. But seriously, a unit in a combat oriented class should not have the same attack power as Mist even though they join after. That's just not okay. Her growths, thankfully, are a bit better. She has excellent speed and skill growths, especially by laguz standards. Her luck is good, her HP is below average by laguz standards but still high overall, and she's got some good res. Her strength and defense are just bad forever, though; her strength growth is passable but not enough to pull her out of such an awful base, and her def growth is just low. As bad as her defense is, she does have the benefit of a survivability- boosting Thunder affinity, which also shouldn't make finding a partner too difficult. And it's not like her evasion is particularly lacking, so the def isn't honestly THAT big a deal, it's just her horrible strength. She can work with an Energy Drop and maybe some BEXP levels. She does easily cap spd/skl so after that you can get to work on fixing her str. She still suffers from th standard cat issues, though, and even with the extra speed form initial BEXP level and the Drop, she's nothing special, and like so many laguz before her, she's largely outclassed for Endgame. As with Kyza, she may see an arc where she's actually useful, but overall she has little benefit. - Reyson Level 15 Heron Fire Affinity Base Stats 40 HP 3 -> 6 Str 5 -> 10 Mag 5 -> 10 Skl 11 -> 22 Spd 31 Luck 6 -> 12 Def 17 -> 34 Res 8 -> 14 Con 5 -> 9 Wt Growths 65% HP 5% Str (OMG) 30% Mag 20% Skl 20% Spd 60% Luck 20% Def 20% Res No weapon levels Innate skills: Blessing (restores HP equal to magic to adjacent allies), Galdrar (user can chant) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-5. Cannot be used in 3-11. The last of the Herons, and widely considered to be the best. Reyson has the highest join level, and consequently the best bases, and consequently has a small chance of not getting decimated by any enemy that decides to attack him (although most still are). Reyson has the best mobility of the Herons. He can fly/canto like Leanne, but has one more move untransformed and 2 more transformed. Untransformed he can only chant one character at a time, but transformed he has the ability to chant everyone around him. As such, while transformed he is very definitely the best of the herons (same chanting but much more mobility than Rafiel and better than Leanne in both). Reyson is the best Heron for endgame in casual play, since he has the best transformed performance and can just eat a stone or gem or something. Rafiel does outperform him for low turn counts, though, since he doesn't NEED to transform to uberchant. I prefer Reyson, but that's mostly just because I don't like Rafiel as a character. Either one (and Leanne too, but less so) should serve you just fine for Endgame. Reyson is a Heron, a Heron is Reyson. If you like Herons, use Reyson when he's around; if you don't, then feel free to skip out. I do definitely recommend him and his siblings, though, if you can't decide. - Janaff Level 29 Hawk Thunder Affinity Base stats 57 HP 16 -> 32 Str 2 -> 4 Mag 19 -> 38 Skl 17 -> 34 Spd 30 Luck 12 -> 24 Def 8 -> 16 Res 6 -> 16 Con 7 -> 16 Wt Growths 55% HP 40% Str 15% Mag 45% Skl 25% Spd 50% Luck 35% Def 10% Res Starts with A Strike Innate Skills: Insight (+20 hit and +5 vision in fog of war maps) How to recruit: Talk to him or Ulki in 3-7 with Ike or Reyson. As in PoR, Uncle Janny joins alongside his partner Ulki. Of the two, Janaff has the clear-cut offense lead. I mean, just look at those bases. 32 strength, 38 skill, 34 speed? He has the spiritually cleansing 34 speed stat RIGHT OFF THE BAT?! And his growths in them are also decent. Well, okay, his speed growth is actually low, but his base is so high he'll never ever have doubling issues and if you really care about capping it then you can BEXP it. His defense is also solid and should either cap or fall just short of it (at 32). He even has monster luck and an accuracy boosting skill that's locked to him, so he's...yeah. Missing like one out of every ten thousand hits or something. His Thunder affinity boost up his not insubstantial evasion and defense, although he joins late enough that he may struggle to find a partner. Between Ulki, the peggies, and the part 4 units he shouldn't have TOO much trouble, at least. It's pretty hard to go wrong with Janaff. There's really not even much to say...he suffers from the ol' "1 range, transform gauge" problem, but even the latter point is less of an issue for Hawks. He's even not being outclassed that badly in Endgame. Definitely worth using; whether you ditch him for a Royal or not, he is quite useful in part 3 and can remain pretty good forever. - Ulki Level 28 Hawk Water affinity Base stats 59 HP 14 -> 28 Str 3 -> 6 Mag 17 -> 34 Skl 18 -> 36 Spd 25 Luck 11 -> 22 Def 10 -> 20 Res 10 -> 20 Con 11 -> 20 Wt Growths 65% HP 25% Str 30% Mag 25% Skl 40% Spd 35% Luck 30% Def 25% Res Starts with A Strike Innate skills: Vigilance (raises evasion and crit evasion by 20) How to recruit: Talk to him or Janaff in 3-7 with Ike or Reyson. So now let's take some time to ponder the subtle nuances of Ulki's base stats. His HP, speed, and skill are great, and...well, all of his other stats are good, except for his actual magic which is w/e. His growths are not so hot, though. His only good growths are HP, speed, and defense, although his skill and luck bases are high enough that his poor growths don't really ever pull them down, and his resistance is also enough to not have any real worries against casters. His strength does start to falter, but he can at least use some BEXP to fix that. Water affinity is desirable, though like Janaff he will have a bit more trouble than most at finding a support partner (he should still be able to at least be working on one by Endgame, though). Vigilance boosts his evasion to ridiculous levels, and makes him effectively uncritable by anything. He ultimately is the more durable but less powerful version of Janaff (the durability comes from Vigilance moreso than actual stats). Both are solid choices, and like Janaff Ulki can serve you well up to and even within the final chapters. - Sigrun Level 19 Falcon Knight Water Affinity Base stats 34 HP 18 Str 13 Mag 22 Skl 24 Spd 28 Luck 20 Def 22 Res 7 Con 23 Wt Growths 40% HP 45% Str 10% Mag 70% Skl 25% Spd 70% luck 10% Def 50% Res Starts with S Lances and A Swords No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically in the beginning of 3-11 Um...those are some mighty polarized growths, missy. Eh, we'll get to them later, let's start with bases. Sigrun has decent durability between her def, res, luck, and speed (her HP base kinda sucks though), and she has an insane base magic. Her spd is okay, but not enough for her to double reliably, and her strength is pitiful. Her growths do go a way in fixing that strength - it will be a while before it gets good, but it will at least get passable. Her skill and luck growths are excellent, and her res is pretty high too. Her HP continues to lag, and...um...uh...okay, whoever decided to give a pegasus knight a 25% speed growth needs to be checked for having a brain tumor or somthing. Considering she already is only borderline doubling, this is a pretty huge problem for her. She can maybe pull it up with BEXP, but not for a long time and even then it may be too little too late. Her defense growth is also crap, but her base is good enough that her stat will never be too awful, and Water affinity helps there, although she has trouble finding a partner since she joins a bit late. At least she has Tanith or Sanaki as emergency supports, I guess. So she's a peggy with decent durability and a crapton of luck and skill, but her offense is basically doomed to failure. It's not as bad as some, but overall I can't recommend her for Endgame. Her flying can make her useful, especially in the desert of 4-3, and her high luck makes her a good item finder (agian, mostly useful in 4-3). She just isn't all that great a combatant. - Tanith Level 16 Falcon Knight Earth Affinity Base stats 35 HP 20 Str 10 Mag 21 Skl 23 Spd 22 Luck 19 Def 20 Res 8 Con 24 Wt Growths 35% HP 55% Str 15% Mag 75% Skl 40% Spd 35% Luck 40% Def 30% Res Starts with A Swords and A Lances No innate skills How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 3-11 The final Falcon Knight, as well as the final character to join in part 3, Tanith is the power peggy. Like Sigrun, her bases are largely unimpressive; not enough speed to reliably double, goodish durability but low HP, and lowish str. Buuuuut, Tanith does have a good growth spread! Her strength growth is great, and she should cap it without much trouble at third tier. Her skill is even better than Sigrun's, and she's got good defense and decent res. Her luck growth is nothing special, but her base ensures her luck will always be good. Her HP is meh forever. And finally, her speed is semidecent - it will still be several levels before she can double reliably, but she has a bit more than one hope in hell of pulling it off. Earth affinity is lovely for inreasing her evasion, and serves as a nice complement to her respectable durability (and helps offset her poor HP). Of course she has all the benefits and drawbacks of being a non-dragony flier, so enjoy the mobility and flee the crossbows. All of the peggies are hard to train, but Tanith winds up with some solid offense and durability. She's the easiest of the 3 to fix with BEXP, in the event that you need to buff up her speed (it's easier to increase her speed than Sigrun's speed or Marcia's strength), and Earth affinity is great. While I personally tend to favor the Hawks and Dragonlords over peggies, I have to say that Tanith can make for a pretty respectable flier. - Sanaki Level 1 Empress Light Affinity Base stats 28 HP 2 Str 33 Mag 22 Skl 23 Spd 32 Luck 10 Def 28 Res 4 Con 4 Wt Growths 70% HP 40% Str 60% Mag 60% Skl 35% Spd 55% Luck 30% Def 50% Res Starts with S Fire, A Wind, A Thunder, and A Light Innate skills: Flare (Mastery skill: negates enemy res and heals user) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 4-P Sanaki has some extremely polar bases. Her magic, luck, and resistance are all great, her skill and speed aren't so much, and her HP, def and str are horrible. She's not quite getting OHKOed by most if any enemies, but between her slightly low speed and her extremely low str, she might actually be getting doubled. She can only wield very basic tomes without AS loss; even Cymbeline, her prf tome, drops her AS by 3 at first. Her growths are actually pretty good, at least. High HP, magic, skill, luck and res, and her strength growth is pretty good also. Her speed and def still lag, though her def growth is still decent by caster standards. Problem is, her bases are so bad (particularly in HP/def/str/spd) that it will be a long time before she makes up for her low bases, and in the case of def/HP she really won't EVER make up for them - she has the lowest caps in them. Her str can get to where she can use higher level tomes without worrying about AS loss, but even that takes a while and she might not get enough str/spd to double with Rexflame, and consequently won't have enough to double much of anything except dragons in Endgame. Flare is a decent but relatively weak Mastery, although between Sanaki's magic and prf tome she should be OHKOing pretty consistently with it when it activates. Light affinity...really isn't saving her shoddy durability, and there aren't many who care about it as Endgame approaches, but there are still some people who might be willing to support with her. And as I have referenced a few times already, she does have a powerful prf tome called Cymbeline that happens to weigh not very much, so that can be helpful. She ideally will switch to Rexflame for Endgame, but she might not have the AS for it, so in that case either Cymbeline or a seige tome should work. Sanaki is very powerful, but that's about it. Her speed prevents her from doubling until endgame and even there she has to have above average strength and speed to double with Rexflame, and her durability is akin to pre-torn tissue paper. You are required to bring her to Endgame, so it might be worth trying to get her levels up a bit, but she really isn't very reliable. NOTE: Sanaki gets an item at the end of 4-E-4 that boosts her defense by ten, which helps her survive a hit from the final boss but not much else. If only they'd given it to her from the start... - Skrimir Level 25 Lion Fire Affinity Base stats 66 HP 19 -> 38 Str 3 -> 6 Mag 14 -> 28 Skl 13 -> 26 Spd 24 Luck 16 -> 32 Def 9 -> 18 Res 16 -> 26 Con 26 -> 46 Wt Growths 90% HP 35% Str 5% Mag 35% Skl 25% Spd 20% Luck 50% Def 5% Res Starts with S Strike Inate skills: Provoke (makes enemies more likely to attack this character), Resolve (when HP falls below half, skl/spd rise by half) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 4-P Skrimir is about what you'd expect from a fellow with his personality. Incredible strength and HP with good defense and...actually, his other stats are at least decent too. His speed is a little shaky I suppose but he's still doubling fairly often and may even be OHKOing the faster enemies. His growths basically continue this. His def goes from good to excellent, as do his HP and strength. His skill is good too. His speed, luck, and res really lag, though. He might manage enough speed to hit his cap for great doubling fun in Endgame, but it won't happen for a long time and with the ol' stunted laguz EXP gain it will be hard to pull off. He is always extremely strong, though, especially if he pulls off SS strike. Fire Affinity is nice (though pretty much unnecessary) for his attack power, and lets him rub off his mightly mighty might on someone else. Provoke is great for him since he can tank, and Resolve makes his speed and skill shoot waaaay up (for great doubling fun even if he doesn't cap!), and since he's a laguz he can take advantage of it by taking hits untransformed. He is ultimately overshadowed by Giffca and Cain, but Skrimir himself is still quite a warrior. Not quite a royal, but he's on his way there. - Naesala Level 27 Raven King Dark Affinity Base stats 60 HP 17 -> 34 Str 7 -> 14 Mag 20 -> 40 Skl 21 -> 42 Spd 20 Luck 13 -> 26 Def 14 -> 28 Res 11 -> 21 Con 12 -> 20 Wt Growths 40% HP 45% Str 15% Mag 30% Skl 45% Spd 55% Luck 15% Def 35% Res Starts with S Strike Innate skills: Formshift (can be permanently in laguz form without stat loss), Vantage (may attack first even on enemy phase), Maelstrom (may do damage after being attacked indirectly), Tear (Mastery skill: triples strength and halves enemies' speed for a turn) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 4-P The second Royal you come across, Naesala is the lowest leveled and has S strike instead of SS like the others. He still has great bases across the board and bribed one of the developers into giving him a Mastery skill even though he's not actually a high enough level to have it. He's pretty strong - not like Skrimir level strong, but pretty strong - and reasonably durable, and absurdly fast. HIs luck base is actually a bit low, but his growth is enough that even that shouldn't suffer too much. Speaking of growths, he has low HP but above average strength and speed along with good luck and res. His skill growth is also okay, and he's very close to capping anyway. His defense is quite low, though, but between his evasion and his decent base, it's not really a problem. His skillset is great; all speed based skills, and he has loads of that, so prepare for a whole lot of Tear. Dark affinity also suits him quite well, although he has the typical part 4 partner panic. In short, Naesala is overpowered. Slightly less so than the other Royals, actually, but overpowered nonetheless. - Tibarn Level 31 Hawk King Heaven Affinity Base stats 68 HP 18 -> 36 Str 2 -> 4 Mag 24 -> 48 Skl 20 -> 40 Spd 29 Luck 16 -> 32 Def 10 -> 20 Res 14 -> 28 Con 16 -> 28 Wt Growths 75% HP 40% Str 5% Mag 10% Skl 20% Spd 40% Luck 40% Def 20% Res Starts with SS Strike Innate skills: Formshift (can be permanently transformed without stat loss), Pavise (may take no damage from an attack), Savior (can rescue other units without spd/skl loss), Tear (Mastery skill: Triples strength and halves enemy speed for a turn) How to recruit: Joins automatically at the beginning of 4-2 Yet another case where all I really need to say is "Laguz Royal", but we can look a little deeper I suppose. Tibarn has high HP, strength, speed, luck, and defense, with decent res and spectacular skill. His growths are nothing special, but still serve to further accent his strength, HP and defense. He still needs to keep an eye out for crossbows, but even up against some of those he can handle himself. Heaven affinity is an okay one for Endgame, but Tibarn doesn't exaclty need any more hit, and he doesn't really need anything else either. He has trouble finding a support, but it's okay if he doesn't. His skillset further emphasizes his durability, and Pavise even activates based on skill, meaning Tibarn just won't take damage from roughly half of the attacks he faces. So, um..."Laguz Royal". - Pelleas Level 12 Dark Sage Water Affinity Base stats 33 HP 13 Str 24 Mag 20 Skl 21 Spd 14 Luck 14 Def 19 Res 9 Con 9 Wt Growths 35% HP 25% Str 55% Mag 45% Skl 60% Spd 40% Luck 30% Def 45% Res Starts with A Thunder and S Dark, gains B Staves at 3rd tier Innate skills: Miracle (may halve the damage of an otherwise lethal blow) How to recruit: Must be playing a game loaded from RD Clear Data. Choose to "Refuse His Command" in 3-12 and he will automatically join shortly into 4-2. Pelleas is the final Sage to join, and he is a unique one. He is one of only two dark magic users in the game, and the other is only available for the very final battle. He is also the only Archsage who can reach S staves to use Fortify. His base stats are decent, though not overly special for his level (although that str/def is nice). The problem, then, is his level. Level 12 isn't particularly good when most of your team is promoted. 21 Speed isn't doubling anything (hell, his tier 2 speed cap of 24 is doubling very little), and 24 Magic isn't enough to pack a significant punch. And while he has good durability for his level, it's still insignificant. So he's pretty much a nonfactor as long as he's tier 2. But how does he grow? He's got good magic and skill coupled with a great speed growth and good res. His defense growth is also good for a caster. His luck is okay, although his lowish base (and rare 25 cap) prevent it from ever really being good. And his HP growsh it pretty garbagetastic. Unfortunately, while he may grow well enough, his speed cap of 31 screws his offense pretty hard in Endgame, and the low accuracy of Dark (and Thunder) may wind up being a problem as well, although he's got two easy supports who have Heaven (and Elincia wouldn't mind Water) so that isn't a huge issue, just a moderatly average issue. Miracle isn't really that good for him given his poor luck base, but if no one else wants it he might as well keep it and it might activate when you need it to. Pelleas just doesn't have a lot going for him. He starts out below average and ends up below average, and there's just no time in between for him to shine...He's your ticket to Balberith, and he can Fortify for Endgame, but beyond that he's pretty bland. - Stefan Level 8 Trueblade Heaven Affinity Base stats 53 HP 27 Str 7 Mag 37 Skl 36 Spd 20 Luck 21 Def 16 Res 13 Con 13 Wt Growths 55% HP 50% Str 20% Mag 60% Skl 60% Spd 15% Luck 40% Def 50% Res Starts with SS Swords Innate skills: Astra (Mastery skill: Attack five times) How to recruit: In 4-3, place Micaiah (or Lethe or Mordecai with transfer data) on the space one to the left and eleven up from the bottom right square. Stefan is your filler Trueblade. His base stats are pretty good overall, with the exception of sorta low res and luck (and magic I suppose). His growths are actually pretty good for a super high level character, with good...well, everything except for a crappy luck growth. He isn't likely to be as good as another Trueblade who you've been training, but he's a fine substitute. Though you recruit him in 4-3, he's not really usable until Endgame due to the nature of 4-3 and it's movement screwing tendencies (i.e he joins so late it doesn't matter), but in Endgame he's performing admirably. His Heaven support is okay but it's hard to partner him with anyone. Otherwise, not much to say. If you need a Trueblade (or an extra one) then Stefan will do well, but if you don't then there's not much point to him. Make sure that you get the Vague Katti, though, whether you recruit him or not. - Oliver Level 8 Saint Fire Affinity Base stats 48 HP 22 Str 31 Mag 22 Skl 20 Spd 28 Luck 18 Def 32 Res 12 Con 12 Wt Growths 65% HP 55% Str 35% Mag 35% Skl 45% Spd 30% Luck 30% Def 20% Res Starts with S Light and A Staves Innate skills: Corona (Mastery skill: negates enemy res and halves their skill) How to recruit: Place Rafiel in his movement range in 4-4 and he will talk to Rafiel and join. Back from the dead (or something), it's Oliver! He's the last Saint you get, and his stats are kind of unimpressive. His HP and strength are immense, his magic is averagish, his luck and res are high, his def is low and his skill and speed are awful. He's doubling pretty much never (except dragons, and he even struggles a bit against those without some levels) and he's kinda frail and his attack power isn't all that great to begin with. He can use Fortify if you pull his staff level up once, and that's pretty much his entire worth for Endgame. He's a fun novelty character, and he does join with some awesome stuff that makes it worth the hassle of dragging Rafiel up to the front lines, but he's a poor combatant. It might be worth taking him to Endgame just to see his boss conversations and supports, though, if you really don't mind him taking another healer's spot. - Bastian Level 10 Wind Archsage Wind Affinity Base stats 45 HP 21 Str 35 Mag 27 Skl 24 Spd 21 Luck 20 Def 32 Res 10 Con 10 Wt Growths 25% HP 20% Str 30% Mag 70% Skl 40% Spd 40% Luck 25% Def 50% Res Starts with SS Wind, S Fire, A Thunder, and B Staves Innate skills: Corrosion (may damage the durability of an enemy's equipped weapon), Flare (Mastery skill: Ignores res and heals the user) How to recruit: Joins automaticaly at the beginning of 4-5 And here we have a stock Archsage. Bastian is pretty average across the board. I mean, really, I can't think of anything that makes him stand out except for his high level and his bad speed, which makes him a pretty bad Endgame choice, and of course Endgame is the majority of his existance. His main selling point is that he has Anima mastery and is available in a map where every single enemy except the boss is weak to one of the anima magic types, so he has pretty reasonable offense there. He's worth using in 4-5, but beyond that it's basically the same case as OLiver: the only incentive to use him is because you like him. - Volke Level 13 Assassin Wind Affinity Base stats 52 HP 30 Str 5 Mag 36 Skl 35 Spd 19 Luck 26 Def 22 Res 11 Con 11 Wt Growths 50% HP 50% Str 5% Mag 60% Skl 65% Spd 20% Luck 45% Def 15% Res Starts with SS Knives Innate skills: Stilness (enemies will not attack unless this character is the only person in their attack range), Lethality (may instakill) How to recruit: Talk to him with Elincia or Bastian in 4-5 and pay him 3000 gold (he actually pays you back more than that afterwards ayway) Volke is the only Assassin in the game, and put simply he's Sothe+. He has good strength, excellent skl/spd, and high HP. His defense isn't quite godly, but it's still pretty high for a speedster. Even his res is good, although his growth is terrible. Stillness is kind of a hit/miss - one the one hand, being borderline invulnerable on enemy phase is nice, but he's semi durable anyway and it prevents him from being able to actuallt fight during that time since nothing is attacking him. He's going to have a lot of trouble supporting, but, uh... well, REAL assassins fight alone! He also gets an immense critical boost and Lethality to add to his offense, and since he's already doubling everything (except Auras without Nasir) and has decent strength to boot, his offense is pretty nice Sadly, he suffers from one major drawback: Knives. The main reason is that knives are weak weapons and Baselard isn't all that exceptional, and knives also lack the versatility of other weapon types so he can't switch to a Brave or anti-Dragon or something. Also, the fact that you are required to take Sothe makes Volke a little redundant: there is little question that Volke is a better combatant, but he isn'tnecessarily superior enough to replace another character just to be a replacement Baselard user. Having said that, Volke is a fun unit to use (...IMO) and while the whole Sothe issue can screw with him, if you don't mind bringing Volke along he does pretty well for himself in Endgame. He also functions well in 4-5, either as a Stillness wall or an attacker, And as you may have gathered from the above point, even if you don't plan to use him, recruit him. A free Peshkatz is nice, and he also gives Ike 20000G before Endgame, so...there you go. - Kurthnaga Level 20 Dragon Prince Water Affinity Base stats 55 HP 15 -> 30 Str 7 -> 14 Mag 8 -> 16 Skl 10 -> 20 Spd 21 Luck 15 -> 30 Def 15 -> 30 Res 7 -> 17 Con 12 -> 42 Wt Growths 95% HP 45% Str 15% Mag 20% Skl 35% Spd 60% Luck 25% Def 40% Res Starts with A Strike Innate skills: Night Tide (increases def and res of adjacent units by 5) How to recruit: Joins automatically before Endgame Kurthnaga is the lowest leveled of the Laguz Royals and also the only one who actually has to go out and EARN his Formshift (you get it after 4-E-3). He is also the only laguz to lose move when he transforms. Statistically he is pretty durable, although his bases aren't overly noteworthy in any particular aspect (except for his speed, which is low enough that he's getting doubled by everything except maybe low-end Generals). His growths are fairly well-spread. He has immense HP, good luck and res (less so def, but it's enough that he can be pretty tanky), and decent speed. He does take a while to get to doubling, though, and...even then that will stop after 4-E-3. That is a good training chapter for him, though, if you want to; the enemies (including the boss) will not target him OR counterattack. Water affinity boosts his durability further if he can support anyone. He also has Night Tide, a skill that boosts the durability of all characters that are next to him. He starts out with A strike which really inhibits his offense (his base strength is okay but not enough to offset it) so his attack is never all that great. Basically, he can be a decent wall, and he can get pretty powerful, but he requires a lot of training in a very short time and by the time his stats get anywhere you're at point where walling doesn't help anyway. Since he's forced into the tower, you might give him any BEXP you have to spare to help him get his stats up a bit, and he can help out by boosting the durability of other people, but as a fighter he isn't noteworthy. - Ena Level 22 Red Dragon Earth Affinity Base stats 59 HP 10 -> 20 Str 15 -> 30 Mag 13 -> 26 Skl 11 -> 22 Spd 18 Luck 13 -> 26 Def 17 -> 34 Res 6 -> 18 Con 11 -> 44 Wt Growths 50% HP 20% Str 50% Mag 40% Skl 40% Spd 35% Luck 15% Def 50% Res Starts with A Strike Innate skills: Boon (recover negative status of adjacent allies at the start of player phase), Renewal (recover 10% HP per turn), Miracle (may halve the damage of an otherwise lethal blow), Blood Tide (boosts skill and speed of adjacent allies by 5) How to recruit: Joins automatically before Endgame. Ena's usefulness is entirely contingent on her skills. As you may have noticed, her bases are pretty bad (getting doubled, passable but unspecial durability, terrible strength) and her growths aren't coming close to making up for it, and even in the event she gets RNG blesssed her horrific speed cap prevents her from doubling at all and she isn't particularly powerful to boot. She can still serve as an alright tank (and with godly magic that can easily hit it's cap of 40, she's really rocks Imbue) but her offense is just bad. Buuut, Ena can increase the offense of other characters, and that's important. She is making people do +5 or 10 damage to enemies, which is of particular worth against the boss of 4-E-3 (who won't attack her, along with all of the enemies there) and the Auras. So even though she has terrible offense, she makes the offense of others better, especially people who are doubling (perhaps with the help of her grandfather?) That's about it, though. Boon can be handy, and Earth is a great affinity (but she's gonna have a hell of a time finding a support, and even then the support is purely for the other character), but she's really all about the Blood Tide. - Caineghis Level 36 Lion King Earth Affinity Base stats 76 HP 22 -> 44 Str 4 -> 8 Mag 23 -> 46 Skl 17 -> 34 Spd 30 Luck 22 -> 44 Def 10 -> 20 Res 17 -> 27 Con 27 -> 47 Wt Growths 50% HP 40% Str 10% Mag 40% Skl (n/a, it's already capped) 20% Spd 40% Luck 30% Def 10% Res Starts with SS Strike Innate skills: Formshift (allows laguz to be transformed permanently without stat loss), Fortune (negates criticals), Roar (Mastery skill, triples str) How to recruit: Joins automatically before Endgame The final laguz Royal, at least technically, Caineghis has some amazing str, skl, and def, with a nice helping of 30 luck. He even has the fabulously resplendent 34 speed, so he can double the big bads. His growths aren't good, but it doesn't matter with bases like that. The only thing even sort of holding him back is his res, and even that's not bad enough to offset his high evasion and HP. Earth affinity is great, but like Ena Cain will have trouble finding a partner at this late date. Fortune is pointless on him (And most people by now, really, although some low luck people like Stefan might like it), but he does get instaMastery, so good for him. He's another laguz royal, and will spend all of Endgame reminding you why he is the Lion King. - Giffca Level 36 Lion Dark Affinity Base stats 73 HP 21 -> 42 Str 4 -> 8 Mag 22 -> 44 Skl 18 -> 36 Spd 28 Luck 20 -> 40 Def 11 -> 22 Res 17 -> 27 Con 27 -> 47 Wt Growths 40% HP 35% Str 10% Mag 35% Skl 50% Spd 25% Luck 30% Def 15% Res Starts with SS Strike Innate skills: Nullify (negates bonus damage from enemy weapons), Roar (Mastery skill, triples strength) Giffca is basically Caineghis, only slightly worse in everything except for Res and Spd where he has slight wins. And no Formshift. Actually, he has a decent chance at reaching 40 speed so he may be doubling the Auras without Nasir's help, which is pretty cool. ...um, I don't know what else to say. Dark is nice, but supporting is unlikely thanks to late join time, Nullify is pretty worthless for him and I would honestly just sell it. His lack of Formshift is frustrating, but he does join with a Laguz Gem and you can have a second from the desert, so he can use one to negate his transformation issues. That's it. He has Royal stats and is only missing out on Formshift. Worth checking into, I would say. - Renning Level 16 Blade Gold Knight Earth Affinity Base stats 56 HP 31 Str 18 Mag 32 Skl 29 Spd 24 Luck 27 Def 23 Res 11 Con 37 Wt Growths 40% HP 60% Str 10% Mag 50% Skl 40% Spd 10% Luck 70% Def 20% Res Starts with SS Swords, A Axes Innate skills: Sol (Mastery Skill, triples damage and heals user) How to recruit: View base conversation "Renning" before entering the Tower This Endgame Paladin is another late joining character who I just don't have a whole lot to say about. He has reasonable durability and str/skl, but not enough speed to double much. He also has the worst luck growth in the game, but his base is decentish so it's not a huge deal. Earth affinity could be nice but he has a hard time finding a support, he's a class that's generally not well-suited to Endgame, and...well, that's about it. He can do okay, and if you want an Endgame Paladin but didn't train one or they got RNG screwed, he's a reasonable enough replacement. - Gareth Level 31 Red Dragon Thunder Affinity Base stats 82 HP 22 -> 44 Str 5 -> 10 Mag 10 -> 20 Skl 7 -> 14 Spd 20 Luck 21 -> 42 Def 9 -> 18 Res 18 -> 44 Con 26 -> 84 Wt Growths 90% HP 40% Str 5% Mag 30% Skl 10% Spd 65% Luck 30% Def 25% Res Starts with S Strike Innate skills: Blood Tide (increases str and skl of adjacent allies by 5) How to recruit: Don't kill him in 4-E-3 and he'll join at the start of 4-E-4 While they have significant stat differences, Gareth ultimately is the same as Ena; use him for Blood Tide, and not for combat. He's very powerful, true, although S strike holds him back a little. He's also quite sturdy - well, wait, no he's not, because by the time he joins everything except some of the final boss' attacks are targeting Res, which he doesn't have much of, and he's also getting doubled by everything. At least he has immense HP. But really, Blood Tide is his purpose in life. Deploy him in 4-E-5 to help the other characters deal more damage, but don't try and have him fight. I suppose he could pack a decentish punch against the Auras himself, but he's better off just utilizing his skill. - Nasir Level 34 White Dragon Light Affinity Base stats 74 HP 7 -> 14 Str 24 -> 48 Mag 13 -> 26 Skl 8 -> 16 Spd 19 Luck 12 -> 24 Def 21 -> 42 Res 11 -> 35 Con 18 -> 75 Wt Growths 70% HP 15% Str 45% Mag 35% Skl 20% Spd 45% Luck 15% Def 40% Res Starts with S Strike Innate skills: Boon (recovers negative status of adjacent allies at the start of player phase), Nihil (negates enemy combat related skills), White Pool (Increases spd and mag of adjacent allies by 5) How to recruit: Don't kill him in 4-E-3 and he'll join at the start of 4-E-4 And it's yet another dragon who's usefulness is based entirely around their skill set! Nasir does have awesome Magic (and actually bases his attacks off of it, unlike a certain granddaughter of his) but the enemies that are running around by this point in Endgame all have high res so he's not actually doing all that much damage. And, like Gareth, his speed is horrible and he's getting doubled by everything, although it's less of an issue for him since he has great res and almost all of the attacks against him are targeting that. White Pool is extremely useful in the final battle, and is the sole reason why I keep mentioning that 34 speed cap that's so gratifying in the bedroom as opposed to 39. He lets a whole lot of characters double the Auras, and as such allows a lot of characters to deal double damage to the Auras, and that's a huge deal. Nihil is also helpful against Auras, although you'll want to give it to someone who is actually attacking them. Definitely bring him along to 4-E-5 to make use of his skill, just don't expect him to make any direct contributions in the battle. - Lehran Level 20 Chancellor Light Affinity Base stats 50 HP 11 Str 40 Mag 40 Skl 40 Spd 40 Luck 23 Def 40 Res 9 Con 9 Wt Growths rates: n/a (they're all 0 but he's not gaining any levels anyway) Starts with SS Light, SS Dark, and SS Staves Innate skills: Corona (Mastery Skill: negates enemy res and halves their skill) Mantle (negates criticals and enemy combat skills, heal HP equal to luck at the start of every turn) How to recruit: l V Lehran has relatively complicated requirements. First, you must be playing a file loaded from Clear Data. Having done that, play up to 1-E and make sure you deploy the Black Knight in that chapter (I don't think he has to actually do anything, he just has to be there). Then, in 3-7 have Ike and the Black Knight get into a battle (try to get Ike to have 27 or more speed so he isn't getting doubled, and have the BK attack from afar so he can't Eclipse). Make sure that neither character is defeated. Having done these things, you will witness Ike's memory scene after defeating the Black Knight in 4-E-2, Micaiah and Yune will keep Lehran alive in 4-E-4, and he will join on the first turn of 4-E-5. Lehran comes with the Ashera Staff, but sadly does not have any weapons. You can pass him a blessed Light or Dark tome, though, and once has has a good weapon he can really start ripping the final boss apart. 40 mag/skl/spd is beautiful offense, and Mantle prevents the Auras from countering him, too! He's for all points and purposes invincible as well. So really the only issue is getting him a weapon (since that means a Light user or Pelleas is giving theirs up), but he's performing so much better than anyone else with them anyway. But even if you don't arm him, he can just spam Ashera Staff or something. He's a pain to recruit, but if you do you might as well make use of his demigodhood. - OPinions and Ratings [B1AS] Okay, so in previous editions of my guide I did not post scores/ratings for the characters. In general, I don't think that giving a character some numeric value out of some other numeric value is a fair or necessarily accurate way of judging them (not to mention it varies on playstyle and stuff like that). However, several people have said to me that I ought to have character ratings and that it might be nice to give an opinion of my own, so this section wound up being born. So I'm going to stick a great big disclaimer here and say that these are my OPINIONS. Opinions based on facts, but opinions nonetheless. If there's a part you don't agree with, as I mentioned at the start of the guide, this will probably be it. Anyway, having said that, let's get on with this. I will give a few different scores. Typically, characters will get initial scores (how good are they from the start?), midgame scores (how good are they in the middle?) and late/ endgame scores (how good do they turn out?), and give a brief justification for each. (please note that this part of the guide is very much a work in progress, and I'm pretty open about changing some of these scores if you can give me a reason why I should) Micaiah Earlygame (part 1): 7/10 She's laughably frail and doesn't double much, but she's also OHKOing some of the nastier enemies, including several bosses, that other characters (even some of your higher level ones) struggle with. Auto-A support with Sothe is also nice, giving her enough avo that she might be able to survive an attack if you get careless with her placement and she's near Sothe. Midgame (parts 3 and 4): 8/10 There aren't as many armor/generals and knight/paladins for her to Thanibomb, but she might double some tigers. More importantly she can now use staves, and since you'll be taking tons of punishment in part 3, that's a big deal. Part 4 has more pallies for her to face, but they come in such big swarms that she probably won't be getting many kills, plus they're not near as difficult as they used to be. 4-3 doesn't give her any movement penalty, though, so that's another plus. Endgame (4-E): 5/10 She goes into Endgame as a level 1 third tier, which means she's way behind and once again isn't doubling anything (except dragons) and the gennies have enough Res and HP that she's not one-shotting them with Thani anymore. Her only real uses are healing (still nice but not as much as it was in part 3) and using Purge. Of course, she can still fight and she does fine, but she's still going to be one of your weaker Endgame units. -- Edward Earlygame (part 1): 6/10 Okay, this is kind of dependant on difficulty (mostly HM versus NM). Edward is invaluable early on since he and Nolan are your only frontliners, but as you start getting more he becomes a bit more average. With levels, he can continue to serve as a respetable fighter, although he's more of a clean-sweeper than a frontline fighter for the middle of part 1 until he can get a +def or avo support and some more str. Midgame (part 3): 6/10 I've always found swordies unreliable in part 3, since they are evaison based and the enemies have pretty high accuracy. HOwever, Edward should have some pretty good offense by this point, and his Light affinity gives him a certain edge (if he's supporting an Earth he might have enough durability that you do not need to worry too much, so maybe a 7/10 in that case). Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 9/10 Edward's growths pay off! He gets great offense, good durability, and good to great evasion depending on supports. Can be a valuable asset in the ripping up of Endgame. -- Leonardo Earlygame (part 1): 5/10 Potshots are nice, but that's all Leonardo has going for him. Well, he also provides a rare + att affinity (+def is nice too). Pretty average, though. Midgame (part 3): 6/10 Lughnasadh is a damn fine weapon, but even it may not save Leo from his lackluster spd/str. He still has worth as a backliner, though, and if he's second tier he can use crossbows + beastfoe if you want him to. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 6/10 Being in a great class is nice, but he has trouble reaching his caps even at max level. If he does, he'll be much better (upwards of 10/10, really) but if he doesn't he's pretty average still. Lughnasadh still helps, but overall he's rather generic. -- Nolan Earlygame (part 1): 8/10 He's got the best combination of offense and defense of the early joiners (barring Sothe, obviously) and stays pretty strong and durable throughout part 1. He won't be doubling for a while (his speed base is meh and Steels weigh him down), but he hits pretty hard with the hit he gets and can frontline well. Earth affinity is also very desireable and he's the first to offer it. Midgame (part 3): 8/10 He's still one of your more durable units and is the only Earth affinity likely to have an A support by 3-6 (although the others can, it's just harder). Tarvos gives him even more defense. Meanwhile, he should be doubling Tigers and may have enough power to ORKO them, and is faring pretty well against cats too. And he can use crossbows + Beastfoe if you so choose. He's still not perfect (after all, ORKOing in part 3 has it's own dangers) but he does pretty well. Lategame: (part 4 and Endgame): 10/10 Great class, no major leveling issues, and easy BEXPability make for a great lategame. Nolan does have a bit of a str deficit by now (by Warrior standards, anyway) but as I said, he caps skl/spd/luck/res/mag pretty fast so it's not really a problem with BEXP to help out. And he can still use Tarvos if it's not broken yet, or switch to Urvan for Endgame. Great choice, especially if his support partner is going to Endgame too. -- Laura Earlygame (part 1): 9/10 She's even easier to kill than Micaiah, but she's your only real healer and the DB needs heals. Midgame (part 3): 7/10 Micaiah is outperforming her here, but having two healers is pretty nice anyway and Laura should still be doing just fine for herself as long as you don't let her get attacked. She might even be decent for attacking from behind the front lines in the event you got her promoted. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 2/10 Too many other healers. Too much trouble getting levels and weapon ranks. Awful endgame class. She's worthwhile in part 4 proper since you will probably want to spread out your healers, but even then each team has a healer already locked to them and you probably won't need more than one, plus Laura will likely be much lower level than the others. -- Sothe Earlygame (part 1): 10/10 He's virtually unkillable with high def and actual evasion (especially near Micaiah) and has great offense as well - whatever he doesn't kill, he's at least weakening enough for someone else to. Plus he can steal and has access to 1-2 range forges. All around amazing. Midgame (part 3, 4-P): 7/10 He's still good, but he's steadily declining. His poor defense and HP growths start dragging down his survivability a bit, and his str cap and the weakness of knives start hurting his offense (although 1-2 range forges are still nice, but since these chapters have lotsa laguz that's not so important). Lategame (4-3 and Endgame): 2/10 His caps suck, knives fail in Endgame, he has a bad mastery, and he promotes late. Baselard is a subpar SS weapon. Free passage to Endgame and the ability to reliably find items in 4-3 save him from failing completely, but he's not so useful anymore. -- Ilyana Earlygame (part 1): 6/10 As another potshotter, she's better than Leo but worse than Micaiah. Not much else of note to say about her here. Midgame (part 3): 4/10 Switching to the GMs helps her gain levels, but she really needs them. She's still doing okay chipping damage but the GMs don't care near as much as the DB did, and she also has to compete with Soren. She's still passable, but she's also still not really noteworthy. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 4/10 Her speed starts ruining her here, and her other stats don't really make up for it. She can still do okay in Endgame, and obviously she gets some extra credit for Rexbolt vs. dragons, but yet again she's really just nothing special. -- Aran Earlygame (part 1): 8/10 He's a great tank, and can hit pretty hard as well. He isn't doubling and mages eat him for breakfast, but he's a great wall on a team that needs one. Midgame (part 3): 7/10 Still a great wall, although now he needs to worry more about getting doubled (cats). Otherwise he's pretty much the same. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 6/10 Walling isn't really anything special anymore, but he's still good at it and by now he might be doubling if you gave him enough BEXP. He's okay but not quite good for Endgame, though BEXP boosts his potential pretty far. -- Meg Earlygame (part 1): 3/10 She's got average durability and terrible offense. She might start getting okay later on, but it won't be until towards the end of part 1. Midgame (part 3): 6/10 She can be pretty useful here, really. Her offense still isn't very good, but her overall durability is nice (respectable def/res/HP/avo combo). Still, her offense lags between mediocre skl/str and swords (she can use lances when she promotes, but she would need to pull herself out of E rank...) Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 4/10 Her speed is too unrelaible thanks to her caps, and her str and sword spec isn't helping. She does still have good overall durability though. She can make a respectable Endgame wall, but that's about the extent of her usefulness here. -- Volug Earlygame (part 1): 9/10 I could see him having a 10/10 really, but I docked a point for no 2-range. Otherwise he's pretty great, either for killing or weakening (although he can't switch between them quite the way Sothe can since he's locked to a constant weapon). Excellent move and Earth affinity are big plusses. Midgame (part 3): 8/10 Gains transformation issues but also the ability to fullshift. I haven't tried the Resolve+EarthxEarth+Beastfoe+Unshifted strategy, so that might affect the landscape. Still worthwhile with S strike, but will start lagging with A. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 7/10 I'm honestly not sure about this one, but I can see him doing fairly well. He has good speed and by SS strike should have good attack power as well, plus loads of avoid from Earth. He's outclassed by some other laguz and obviously the Royals, but he still does fine. -- Tauroneo Earlygame (1-6): 10/10 Completely broken from one chapter. Next! Midgame (3-12 and 3-13): 7/10 Still pretty durable, might be doubling slower enemies and gets pretty beastly if you left him with Resolve (definitely understandable if you didn't, though, since he's not available much). Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 4/10 Walling is less important now, and his speed caps start screwing him out of double turns, and his strength growth isn't quite enough to make up for it. Still an okay character, but he's definitely starting to falter here. -- Zihark Earlygame (part 1): 8/10 Not quite as good as Sothe, but Zihark can still tear up the battlefield. He won't be reaping the benefits of a support just yet, but he can get one going. Nice all-purpose character. Midgame (part 3, DB): 6/10 Mostly due to 3-6 and 3-13 being sucky TB chapters. Zihark still does fine but you need to really keep an eye on him and not let him get swarmed. Supports go a ways in offsetting this, but still. Midgame (part 3, GMs): 6/10 He fares better if he switches sides, since this gets him more EXP gain and he doesn't have to deal with 3-13. On the other hand, he's also underleveled by GM standards so he's not particularly noteworthy. Basically, switching sides makes him better himself but worse relative to those around him, so it kinda depends what you're looking for there. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 9/10 Great Endgame class. His stats aren't quite as good as Mia or Edward's, but he has Earth to offset that (of course, that only applies if his partner goes to Endgame with him). All in all a good choice. -- Jill Earlygame (part 1): 6/10 I'd actually give Jill a 5/10 as far as combat is concerned, but she also has flying/canto utility, and I couldn't decide if she should get an extra point or two for that. Regardless, her base durability is fine but her base offense sucks and won't really improve during part 1. So... Midgame (part 3 DB): 8/10 Flying/canto is particularly useful in these maps. By now Jill should be pretty sturdy overall (her evasion and HP should be getting reasonable and her def already was), and her offense should have improved, too. She won't likely be one-rounding wihtout a Brave Axe, but she can move around and pick off targets and fly to safety and fun stuff like that. Midgame (part 3 GMs): 7/10 Flying/canto isn't as valuable in these chapters (well, it's as valuable but there are many other characters who can do it) and she'll be underleveled among the GMs (particularly in relation to other fliers). She's still good, but needs work here. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 10/10 Female Dragonlord is an excellent Endgame class, and Jill's growth spread helps her reach her important caps. Even if she is lagging a bit in str or def, BEXP can fix them no problem since she should have no trouble capping mag/spd/luck/ res. -- Fiona Earlygame (part 1): 0/10 Yes, I gave someone a zero. It applies. Fiona is worthless at first, doing insignificant damage with bad hit and unable to double (and getting doubled by faster enemies) and with meh concrete durability on top of it. Even with a forge to boost her offense she's pretty bad and not really adding anything to the team. Midgame (part 3): 4/10 If you can get her promoted, she does okay in part 3. She's still bad offense wise, but her evasion and concrete durability should be enough that she can be an okay wall and Imbue helps her survivability a bit as well, plus if she's supporting that will boost her avo even more. Still nothing special, but she's not dragging you down anymore. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 6/10 She can be pretty good in Endgame, but it's going to require a lot of leveling to get her there. She is prety hard to kill at this point, but her offense is still only decent (she's probably doubling the big bosses, though). -- Tormod Earlygame (part 1): 8/10 He's not quite on the same level as Sothe or Volug, but he does pretty well for himself. Targeting res and doubling fairly consistently is a big plus, and fire spec helps too. Celerity is also very nice, although he shouldn't be keeping it (he can find some use for it in 1-7 and 1-8 at least). Midgame (4-4): 2/10 His only saving grace here is Meteor, and even that you might be saving for Sanaki later anyway. Lategame (Endgame): 3/10 In the highly unlikely event he gets trained, he can perform okay. His magic deficit hurts but he's semisturdy and has some good doubling potential. Basically, he's a 1/10 if you didn't get him up to speed in 4-4 and a 5/10 if you managed to, so I gave him a 3/10. -- Muarim Earlygame (part 1): 9/10 Pretty much unstoppable. Only things holding him back are transformation and... well, that's about it, actually. Midgame (4-4): 5/10 Not near as bad as the other LEA members, but he's still not doing much besides dealing one nasty hit per turn, and he's still got transformation to worry about (but then again you have laguz stones and stuff now). Lategame (Endgame): 1/10 Sadly, there is no salvaging Muarim. Tiger caps are terrible for Endgame and he doesn't have time to level or get a support going or something to counter that, and even if he did he wouldn't be doing much. -- Vika Earlygame (part 1): 6/10 Flying is nice and she's got pretty good stats, but she also has transformation to worry about and she's not quite as powerful as Tormod and Muarim. Still good in her own right, though. Midgame (4-4): 1/10 She has evasion, but that's about it and it's not reliable enough to save her atrocious concrete durability. She can double, but she still won't be doing significant damage. Pretty much deadweight. Lategame (Endgame): 4/10 She can be pretty good, more like a 6 or 7, but like Tormod it means she has to get a lot of training in a little time, so she isn't likely to have caught up enough to be worthwhile. -- Nailah Anygame: 10/10. Unkillable ORKO machine. Woo! -- Rafiel (not sure how to judge herons, so just bear with me here) Earlygame (part 1): 9/10 The DB would really like a Heron, and getting double action with the BK and Nailah is kind of awesome. Midgame (part 4): 8/10 You have to be more careful with him since reinforcements spawn all over the place, but chanting is still nice. Lategame (Endgame): 10/10 Chanting all around without the need for a gem! -- BK Whenever he's available: 10/10 for Nailah's reasons + 1-2 range. -- Elincia Earlygame (part 2): 7/10 Okay, this is hard to rate because she's pretty mediocre in 2-P but a raging vengeance demon in 2-E, so 7/10 is kind of a guesstimate. Either way, healing and Amiti is a nice combo. Midgame (part 4): 7/10 She takes some time to pick up (she has trouble doubling at first, unless she got lotsa levels in part 2) and she's always on the fragile side of things, but she gets some serious offense once she starts quadding with Amiti. Lategame (Endgame): 8/10 See above, only with less concern of her laggy start and more emphasis on S staves for Fortify. She can also Triangle attack with the Seraphs. -- Marcia Earlygame (part 2): 7/10 Her stats are kind of average, but flying is helpful, particularly in 2-E, and she can take out the Horseslayer guy in 2-3 before he gets to attack a pally. Midgame (part 3): 6/10 More of the same, but she's surrounded by tougher enemies and better allies and it's hard for her to catch up. Paragon can help, though, and she has a good shot at getting one in 3-9. Lategame (part 4): 6/10 Good Endgame class and offense boosting affinity work well for her, plus she and the other Seraphs (Elincia too) have Triangle attacks. She can be hurting for str, but as I mentioned fire helps offset that. -- Nealuchi Earlygame (part 2): 8/10 Wrath works excellently for him and he's fairly durable. It's sorta tough to juggle his transformation gauge in 2-P but it's not so bad in the other maps. Midgame (part 4): 3/10 Wrath is less helpful and his stats are rather lacking. He can still double a lot and he's not quite bad, but he doesn't have much to offer. Lategame (Endgame): 4/10 If he gets the training he does fine, but it takes a lot and he's not anything special. Tear is a great mastery, but that's about all he's got. -- Leanne Earlygame (part 2): 9/10 A flying chanter is pretty nice against 2-2's hills and 2-E's ledges. It might be hard to get her chanting two people, but it's still a nice extra bonus. Midgame (3-11, part 4): 9/10 She has to worry about range a bit more here, but on the other hand she gets to fly over barricades and has no movement penalty in the desert. Lategame (Endgame): 8/10 She's still useful as a heron, but she's not doing as well as her brothers who can chant 4 at once (and Reyson's outmaneuvering her as well). -- Haar Earlygame (part 2): 10/10 He's doubling a good portion of enemies and is basically invulnerable. And of course he also has the benefits of flying/canto in 2-E, and is the only one who doesn't take extra damage from crossbows. Midgame (part 3): 9/10 His doubling woes are more significant here, but his maneuverability is still a huge plus, especially in such maps as 3-3. He's also still basically unkillable, although you do want to keep an eye on mages. He might make an occasional OHKO, which is always fun. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame) 8/10 More like 6 or 7 for Endgame proper, but he's still doing great in part 4, especially if you send him to the desert where mobility is needed. -- Brom Earlygame (part 2): 7/10 His offense is fairly good here, and he's very durable. He doesn't double many promoted enemies, but most are halbs so he has the WTA which helps a bit. Midgame (part 3): 5/10 Still a great wall, but his offense plummets. He can't double anything anymore and his speed just gets more problematic over time. His strength and skill also start lagging a little as time passes. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 3/10 He's just too slow to be effective anymore, and his cap of 30 ensures that even if he's blessed he's hardly doubling anything. His durability is still fine but not really enough to save him in Endgame. -- Nephenee Earlygame (part 2): 6/10 She's fine, but she does have her share of problems. Her evasion isn't good enough to offset her mediocre durability, and her speed is good but her weapon is heavy enough that she may struggle to double enemies anyway (on the other hand, it does give her a lot of power). Midgame (part 3): 7/10 Here she starts to shine. She's got moderate leveling issues when she joins the GMs unless you stuffed her full of BEXP in 2-E, but it's not too hard on her, and she cap rams stats quite quickly so BEXP will pull up her str or def. Even without it she's performing admirably, although she won't be ORKOing much until she can get her str up a bit. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 9/10 Basically a swordmaster only with lances and more durability but wit less crit. Good all around stats and she caps most of them (and can cap the others with little trouble with BEXP), and the Wishblade is a great weapon. -- Heather Thievery: 9/10 She has a lot of items that only she can get. Everything stealable in parts 2 and the GMs chapters are only stealable by her. Combat: 2/10 She doubles everything and dodges fairly well, but her attack power is awful, as is her concrete durability. Not recommended for fighting. -- Lucia Earlygame (2-2): 9/10 She's a bit flimsy even now, but she's ORKOing most enemies with her silver sword and dodging very very well. High crit, too. Midgame (part 4): 3/10 She's passable, but extremely crit reliant and her evasion isn't good enough to offset her defenses anymore. Lategame (Endgame): 7/10 She's not quite on the same level as the other TBs (or rather, she takes more effort and needs more BEXP) but she can still perform admirably if you put some effort into her. She does desperately need some str, though, but BEXP. -- Lethe Earlygame (part 2): 6/10 She's basically a more durable Nephenee with a transformation gauge. Well, that and she's doubling most enemies, though she's not particularly strong. Midgame (part 3): 3/10 She's still got okay durability but not enough to save her attack power. Or the fact that she still has to deal with a transformation gauge. And with the slow exp gain of laguz, she's not getting anywhere anytime soon. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 3/10 She gets Rend, which is great, but that's about all that's changed. She's still not very strong and is limited to 1 range and has to deal with a gauge. -- Mordecai Earlygame (part 2): 8/10 He's pretty strong and incredibly sturdy. Basically Brom+, but with a gauge. Midgame (part 3): 6/10 Walling isn't as big a deal with the GMs, but it's still nice and besides that Mordy can still pack a punch with his hits although he's doubling just about nothing. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 3/10 Walling is even less important and Mordy's one hit is less significant, plus Tigers are terrible in the Endgame. He's still okay in part 4 proper, but even that partially depends on which team he goes with. -- Geoffrey Earlygame (2-3, latter 2-E): 9/10 Mows through everything, but his def and HP bases are low enough that if he mow through too much he might get killed. That will still take a lot, though. Meanwhile, he's ORKOing if not OHKOing every nonpromoted enemy and most tier 2 enemies as well. Midgame (3-9): 8/10 Still the best you've got and still holding his own pretty well, but the bad guys have gotten a bigger boost in stats than he has. In particular he seems to have a little more trouble doubling here. Still great overall, though. Lategame (4-5, Endgame): 3/10 How the mighty have fallen. Geoffrey's bases really start holding him back here and his growths are hardly enough to save him. Paragon helps, but only a little bit, and his caps are mediocre as well. -- Kieran Earlygame (2-3, latter 2-E): 9/10 Harder to kill than Geoffrey but has a little more trouble doubling. Great hardcore physical unit. Midgame (part 3): 6/10 He's still good, particularly in 3-9, but when he joins the GMs he's a bit behind. Not hit as hard as the other CRKs, but he gets kind of lost in the shuffle. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 4/10 He can do fine, but his caps screw him out of really being endgame worthy and part 4 really likes to screw over pally movement. Still a worthwhile tanker power type, but there are better. -- Makalov Earlygame (2-3, latter 2-E): 5/10 He does okay, but he's easily losing to Geoff and Kieran. He's pretty weak and not doubling as consistently as you might hope, but he's fairly hard to kill. Midgame (part 3): 4/10 Starting to fall behind, starting to get screwed by his caps. His low offense is also becoming more noticeable here. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 4/10 He's an acceptable paladin, but still kind of a generically durable but weak character. He does at least have frequent doubling on his side, though he can't quite double the big bosses. -- Astrid Earlygame (2-3, latter 2-E): 2/10 She's potshotting, except her team doesn't really care. Her offense is terrible and her durability isn't so hot either (but being a ranged attacker that's not so bad). Midgame (part 3): 3/10 She can start gaining more EXP here and thus take fuller advantage of Paragon, plus she gets access to Blossom if you want her to use it. However, she's still performing pretty poorly. Potshotting does mean a bit more in 3-9 than it did in part 2, though. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 7/10 Astrid's Endgame is along the lines of a 4/10 without Blossom or BEXP, but if she reaches the full potential of her surprisingly good caps, she can really be pretty powerful, especially with the highly broken Double Bow. -- Danved Earlygame (2-3, latter 2-E): 7/10 He's doing pretty good for himself, but he's also a footsoldier surrounded by mounted people (i.e. he has move issues in 2-3 and 2-E). Killer lance is a plus although Marcia might want it more. Midgame (part 3): 5/10 He's not anything special here. His bases start holding him back, and his growths aren't fixing his stats quickly enough. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 5/10 More of the same. He's a decent all around character by now, but he doesn't have any real strong point except for evasion. He can double fairly reliably, too, although like Aran he can't quite reach 34 speed thanks to his cap. -- Calill Earlygame (2-E): 5/10 She can attack from ledges, but she's not doubling much and typically 3HKOs. She's also very flimsy, although thanks to ledges that's not a problem. Meteor is also nice if you feel like using it here. Midgame (part 3): 4/10 She's a good Paragon choice and her speed shoots up pretty fast, but she's not doubling at first and her power isn't particularly good for a while either. She's basically your standard caster for now. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 7/10 She actually is good here. She should be doubling consistently by now and fire spec gives her overall good offense, plus she has prety good evasion by now, too (and even more avo/att from her affinity). She still has horrific defenses, but that's her only real problem anymore. Keep Nihil on her and let her bless Rexflame and she'll even be a significant Endgame force. -- Ike Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 9/10 He's got ridiculous levels of offense and he's pretty sturdy to boot. His only issues are lack of good 2-range and the occasional mage (they seem fairly prominent in these chapters, though, at least moreso than later on). Great all around. Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 10/10 Still godly, but now the mages are rarer and less dangerous and in 3-11 Ike gets Ragnell, and frankly once he gets that he's unstoppable. Oh, and it's got 1-2 range so that problem went away, too. His speed might start lagging a bit but he should still be doubling just about everything. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 10/10 Great endgame stats, Ragnell, and now he has axes so he can use the Hammer against a ertain archenemy of his. Aether helps offset what damage intake he faces and he gets Nihil as well for Endgame (too bad it still takes capacity). His only problem, again, is somewhat laggy speed, but BEXP should fix that right up. -- Mist Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 6/10 Healers aren't as big a deal to the GMs as they are to the DB, but are still a valuable asset. HOwever, Mist still needs to really be careful and she's contributing slightly more than nothing offensively. Her magic isn't all that special either, but she should still be healing enough with a Mend if not a basic Heal. Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 6/10 Her durability problems should be less significant by now, but healing is also getting less valuable as your characters get more powerful and your enemies don't really. Not much has changed. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 5/10 Healing is great in 4-4 (she's forced onto Ike's team) where you have to put up with the newly returning and hugely underleveled Tormod, Muarim, and Vika, but it's still not as big a deal as it used to be and there's too much competition for it. Her 3rd tier pony gives her a mobile edge on the others, but by Endgame non-Micaiah healers are kind of redundant anyway, and she hardly has enough combat ability to make up for it. -- Titania Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 9/10 She's slightly frail (by GM standards and for her level) but has some of the best offense on the team between high str, good speed, and axes. Mobility is another nice bonus, although 3-4 screws her pretty hard since she can't climb. Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 9/10 She's still doing well, may be promoted and has a support. Movement is still nice and one map still screws her up pretty badly (3-7). She should still have more than sufficient offense, and Light helps fix her durability. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 6/10 Part 4 is not very kind to pallies, and Titania doesn't quite reach ideal caps for Endgame. However, she still performs pretty admirably and will be doubling just about all nonboss enemies. Her durability is a little shaky by now, but her offense still makes up for it. -- Soren Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 5/10 He's doing some respectable damage, but doubling hardly at all and he's quite the squishy wizard. Good at weakening enemies so your other characters can get easier kills. Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 7/10 Okay, this is assuming that he's doubling, which is also assuming that he's either been BEXPed or that he's been crowned (or both) or has gotten lucky or something. But still, he can have some pretty sweet if not kinda unreliable offense. Either way, he's still having evasion issues and needs to not get attacked. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 6/10 Archsages aren't so great for Endgame, but Soren has a good shot at capping everything important (mag/skl and speed will come with extra leveling or BEXP) and 32 speed isn't so bad, really. He's not quite as good as Calill, but he has much more opportunity to level up. -- Oscar Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 7/10 He's Titania only not quite as good. Still reasonably hard to kill, and he can double somewhat reliably, especially on normal or easy. Movement is mostly a plus although it does screw with him a bit sometimes. Earth affinity is nice although he won't be getting the full benefits of it just yet. Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 8/10 More of the same, really. He's got the benefit of Earth now, but that's about all that's new. 3-7 hates him. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 6/10 His affinity can still carry him through the anti-pally part 4, but he doesn't have a noteworthy performance. Not bad, but there are better. -- Boyd Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 5/10 He's fine, but he's not quite what I would call good. Failing to double, doing good damage per hit, and about in the middle as far as durabilty goes (he has high HP and decent def but his evasion is pretty low and he needs to be on the front lines more than your other squishier characters). Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 7/10 He should be doubling some now, his def and HP growths should be getting him durable, and his strength is moving up, too. Fire affinity helps his offense even further. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 10/10 One of the best endgame classes, easily caps str and should pull off spd as well (might want some BEXP for that, though) and Fire is a great affinity for Endgame too. He's up there with the best now. -- Rolf Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 2/10 Negligible chipping damage, and that's about it. Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 5/10 He should be getting some good offense about now, but still kinda shaky. At the very least he can weaken off enemies your other characters failed to kill, but he should be getting some ORKOs himself. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 10/10 If he can make it to mid/late tier 3, he'll be a real force to be reckoned with as a Double Bow Marksman, and even though he's a hard class to get EXP for he should be able to pull of those stats. -- Shinon Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 8/10 He can't counter (without the unreliable crossbows) much, but he's doubling evertying and doing respectable damage, plus he has high crit. He's also hard to kill, being one of the tankier characters despite his status as a backliner. Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 8/10 More of the same. Doubling, fairly strong, he can even get some BEXP at tier 2 to pump his strength up a bit more. And he's still tanky, so he's great all around! Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 10/10 More of the same. Great offense, great durability. The only difference is in Endgame he gets the Double Bow, so now he can counterattack (and do obscenely high damage besides). HIs strength may not quite hit it's cap without BEXP, or it will with BEXP. Marksman is just a wonderful Endgame class. -- Gatrie Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 9/10 He might actually be doubling some, and he's damned hard to kill and strong besides. Great all around. Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 8/10 His speed cap might screw with him here, but it shouldn't be for too long if you give him BEXP or a crown. Otherwise, he's still an all around good unit. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 5/10 He's still pretty good for part 4, although he can have some movement issues depending on which team he's sent with. Endgame sucks for generals. -- Mia Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 7/10 She's doubling reliably and has high hit and respectable if not particularly astounding str, but she's also the most fragile frontliner you have and doesn't quite have reliable evasion yet. Useful, but be careful. Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 9/10 Forges, fire affinity and her strength growth help ensure her offense is pretty sweet now, and if she gets a +Def or +avo support her durability shouldn't be much of a problem anymore either. And again, doubling doubling doubling. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 9/10 A trueblade who caps str and has a +att affinity? Yay. Low str cap and swords kinda hurts, but with crit/astra/fire, she's pretty good at killing stuff. -- Rhys Earlygame (3-P to 3-5): 7/10 Mist + mag, at least for now. Decent chipping damage if you care, and he's good for heals. The GMs aren't just desperate for healers, but he's still nice to have around. Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 5/10 He cap rams magic and his def and spd aren't mvoing up fast enough to keep him from getting ORHOed, and meanwhile other healers (particularly Ilyana and Soren who may be promoting around now, possibly Calill as well) are starting to crop up, making him less valuable. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 3/10 He's got enough of a level lead over Laura that I felt giving him +1 over her was justified, and some part 4 maps like 4-4 are pretty tough and so an extra healer is nice, but there are so many and his combat is so awful that he isn't getting much credit for it. Meanwhile, bad growths and a terrible Endgame class (and Micaiah being forced to Endgame) pretty much ensure he'll be worthless for that part. -- Ranulf Midgame (3-4 to 3-E): 8/10 He's pretty good all around, his only real problem being the dreaded gauge, which hits cats particularly hard. Otherwise, he should be up to the offensive and defensive standards set by everyone else. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 6/10 He's still okay in general, but his gauge still screws with him and cats in general have a hit-or-miss endgame. Rend is awesome, though, and regardless he fares reasonably well in part 4 proper. -- Kyza Midgame (3-4 to 3-E): 2/10 He can tank somewhat, but that's about it. He's pretty weak and has trouble doubling and dodging, and fire mages can be a threat as well. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 2/10 Tigers fail Endgame and he's not really anything special for the rest of part 4 either. He can soak hits for a team, but that's all he's really doing and that's not aexactly a rare ability. -- Lyre Midgame (3-4 to 3-E): 1/10 Terrible damage ouput, low durability for a laguz. She gets to doubling, but her strength is so bad it doesn't actually help that much. She can get bearable with an Energy drop, but that's about the only way to save her. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 3/10 She caps rams some things to help pull up her str a bit, and Rend is nice, but she's still got cat issues and is largely overshadowed by the royals and high- end nonRoyals. -- Reyson Midgame (parts 3 and 4): 10/10 He can only chant one person untransformed, but he can actually keep up with your other units, and then he transforms and gets superchanting and even better mobility. Plus he can instabliss, which is...not important, but yeah. Lategame (Endgame): 9/10 Small maps mean his mobility isn't quite so important, and he needs to gobble a Gem or a stone to superchant while Rafiel doesn't. He's still invaluable, though, but Rafiel has a slight edge and herons are weird to rank anyway. -- Janaff Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 9/10 Transformation and 1 range are all that holds him back, but he's really good at decimating things. He doesn't grow too well, but does he really need to? Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 9/10 Hawks do pretty well for Endgame and Unle Janny's still got the speed to double whatever the hell he wants and is doing great damage besides. He's not quite a Royal, but he's still a great unit. -- Ulki Midgame (3-7 to 3-E): 8/10 Also a very good hawk, he doesn't quite have Janaff's offense but he has the benefits of extra evasion and is effectively uncrittable even by high crit classes like swordies. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 9/10 More of the same, high evasion and good if not quite spectacular offense. Plus, now he has the benefits of Tear and probably a support as well (Water affinity, yum). DOn't forget tear is based on speed, which Ulki has loads of. -- Sigrun Midgame (3-11 and 3-E): 3/10 She's got flier utility, but that's about it. She's very close to promotion so she can Stun, but otherwise she's got poor str and decent but unreliable speed so her overall offense is poor. Her durability at least is fine. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 4/10 More of the same, but flying is particularly helpful in 4-3. She's still not so great at the actual fighting part, though. She gets Triangle attack for Endgame, too. -- Tanith Midgame (3-11 and 3-E): 3/10 See Sigrun, basically. Okay durability, but not very strong and her speed isn't quite reliable. She packs a little more punch than Sigrun, but is farther from promotion (sans Crown) so she on't be Stunning as quickly. Lategame (part 4 and Endgame): 6/10 She can get pretty good for Endgame, although it's gonna be tense seeing if her speed can make it to 34 or not. Otherwise she's got pretty good str, Wishblade is a great weapon, and she can Triangle Attack. -- Sanaki Midgame (part 4): 3/10 She does loads of damage per hit, but doesn't double and is getting ORKOed by far too many enemies. Gets a bonus point no movement penalty in 4-3. Lategame (Endgame): 3/10 Okay, she CAN be upwards of like an 8/10, but the likelihood of her reaching the str/spd necessary to double with rexflame is pretty low and that would still take a lot of painful training. Otherwise, she's more likely to just sit back and drop meteors on people, which is handy but not a very big deal. -- Skrimir Midgame (part 4): 9/10 Slight doubling issues (and I mean very slight), but HUGE power and great durability, too. He gets docked a bit for being sleep fodder and 1 range, but his gauge isn't as big a problem as it is with many other laguz. Lategame (Endgame): 7/10 More of the same, but his low res can be a legitimate problem in the latter parts of Endgame and he can have doubling issues. He's still good, but it's tougher for him to deal with his low stats than for others. -- Naesala Midgame (part 4): 10/10 His only problems are 1 range and S strike, but he's strong enough that the latter isn't really an issue. Well, crossbows can be an issue too, I guess, but he's got such sick avoid that he might really be dodging them. Lategame (Endgame): 10/10 I could maybe see 9/10 if he fails to reach SS strike, but he's doubling all enemies and Tearing everything up and Formshift just adds to it. -- Tibarn All of his player controlled existence: 10/10 He's durable, he's very strong, he's doubling everything, he's got Tear, he doesn't take any damage half the time thanks to Pavise, he's got ten freaking move, and he's just really, really broken. -- Pelleas Midgame (part 4): 2/10 He's got okay chipping damage, but nobody really cares. He has accuracy issues form Dark, too, and his only other option is Thunder. Being underleveled isn't helping, either. Lategame (Endgame): 3/10 He gets bonus points for being the only Balberith user (It's not great, but it's still basically exclusive to him) and being the only Archsage who can reach S staves. Otherwise his speed cap and Dark magic combine to screw him over and the EXP load he needs to even get that far isn't helping. -- Stefan Lategame (Endgame, 4-3 he's not around enough to matter): 7/10 He's a bit behind, but he's got respectable stats and is a good Endgame class. He doesn't really get supports, but he does okay anyway and he might get C or B with a leftover or other late joining character. -- Oliver Lategame (Endgame, 4-4 he's not around enough to matter): 1/10 Slow, poor offense, bad class, healing is redundant. Might give someone a boost with his fire affinity, but that's about it. -- Bastian Midgame (4-5): 6/10 He's not particularly good, but he's high level and has anima mastery against a ton of laguz, and he can be a backup healer, so all in all he's got some nice things going for him. Worth deploying, at the very least. Lategame (Endgame): 4/10 Aaaaand then anima mastery doesn't matter and he's getting outclassed by other Archsages which isn't a noteworthy endgame class to begin with and his speed isn't enough to double much. He can help a little, but not a lot. -- Volke Midgame (4-5): 7/10 He can double everything and has huge crit, plus an innate skill that makes enemies not attack him unless he's their only choice (so he's not likely to get himself killed). Crit or mastery reliance is kind of annoying, but he activates one or the other frequently and is just a nice unit to have around. Lategame (Endgame): 6/10 He's similar to a TB, but with more crit and less power. He also has to deal with the Baselard, which is a not particularly good SS weapon, and the lack of a support (nobody cares about Wind, so he's going to have trouble finding one even within Endgame). He still does fine, but he's not quite the killing machine I'd like him to be. -- Kurthnaga Endgame: 4/10 He's sturdy...but only eventually. He gives durability...but no one really cares. He's powerful, but not for a long time. He's doubling just about never. All out mediocrity. -- Ena Endgame: 6/10 She has horrible combat, but she also has a helpful innate skill that only Red Dragons can use. +5 str is quite nice for allies and really helps against the big bosses. -- Caineghis Endgame: 10/10 The last laguz Royal, Caineghis is another invincible ORKOing machine. As such, he's another 10/10. -- Giffca Endgame: 10/10 His only issue is the lack of formshift, otherwise he's basically another Cain. But since he comes with a laguz gem...well, disaster averted, then! Well, he still has to spend his first turn using the Gem, but it's a small price to pay for such a good unit. -- Renning Endgame: 4/10 He's pretty generic. Not too different from Makalov, but a bit stronger at the cost of a bit of evasion and support issues. Earth affinity helps, but too late to help a lot. -- Nasir Endgame: 7/10 His entire use is for White Pool in the final battle, but White Pool is a huge help, so this seemed like a fair score. Otherwise his combat is unspectacular, with him taking and dealing little damage thanks to his magical nature. -- Gareth Endgame: 5/10 Red Tide is helpful, but only for the one fight and Spirits really rip him up. He does at least have huge power, but he really shouldn't be fighting. -- Lehran 4-E-5: 10/10 He's invincible and has loads of offense. He's like a laguz Royal, except the game considers him a beorc. All he needs is a weapon... (please note that this part of the guide is very much a work in progress, and I'm pretty open about changing some of these scores if you can give me a reason why I should) -- Supports & Affinities [4FF] Like some previous Fire Emblems, this game has a support system that allows two characters to receive stat boosts when they are within 3 spaces of each other. In this particular Fire Emblem, any set of characters can support each other. Characters must gain a certain amount of support points with each other, which are gained by standing near each other, shoving (sometimes), rescuing, and healing each other, or just by being deployed in the same map. After they gain enough points, you can create/upgrade a support between them in the base menu. There are three levels: C, B, and A, A being the best. As the support level increases, so do the bonuses. The bonuses characters get is dictated by the affinities of the characters supporting each other. Each affinity gives a certain amount of points to hit, avoid, attack, or defense (note that attack boosts both physical and magical damage output, and defense decreases physical and magical damage intake). The boosts are as follows (note that the game rounds up) Wind: +2.5 hit/avo. Water: +0.5 att/def Light: +2.5 hit and +0.5 def Dark: +2.5 avo and +0.5 att Fire: + 2.5 hit and +0.5 att Thunder: +2.5 avo and +0.5 def Heaven: +9 hit Earth: +7.5 avo So let's say I have Ike and Mist support each other. Ike has an Earth affinity and Mist has Water, so when I start their support they will have +7.5 avo from Ike's Earth and +0.5 att/def from Mist's Water. This rounds up to +8 avo and +1 att/def. Remember, these boosts only activate if Ike and Mist are within 3 spaces of each other. So after a while they gain enough support points and I level their support up to B. Now they get another +7.5 avo and 0.5 at/def. They now have a total of 15 avo and 1 att/def. Then I level it up to A and they get yet another 7.5 avo and 0.5 att/def, giving them a total of 22.5 avo and 1.5 att/def, which rounds up to 23 avo and 2 att/def! In general, Earth and Water are considered to be the best affinities. Fire, Dark, and Thunder are also pretty useful. Heaven isn't a very big deal, although it does have situational uses, Light is also pretty situational but there are a few characters who would like hit/def, and wind...is pretty worthless in general, really, but better wind than no support at all. Anyway, supports are a nice little boost for characters and some get quite a lot of benefit from this system. For example, the EarthxEarth pairing results in two characters getting an extra 45 evasion! The support system is hardly necessary, but it's worth experimenting with at least. There are also supports called Bonds. These are built-in supports that give boosts of five or ten critical and crit evade, but the two characters must be adjacent to each other. You can see which characters have bonds in their info menus. Note that if you transferred an A support with two characters from Path of Radiance, that will become a Bond support in Radiant Dawn. The SS Weapons [ZOMG55] There are several SS weapons in this game, at least one for every weapon type. Laguz weapons increase in power when they gain weapon levels, so they essentially get SS weapons by getting SS weapon levels. Beorc, however, have to find theirs, so here's how to get them. I will also mention what characters are able to use said SS weapon just for the hell of it. While most characters can only SS one weapon type, there are a few – Ike, Micaiah, and the Saints (Laura, Rhys, and Oliver) that can SS multiple weapon types. Vague Katti: An SS sword. Stefan comes with it. Have Micaiah step on the space 1 left and 11 up from the bottom right square to recruit him. I believe that if you place any other character there (besides Mordecai or Lethe in a transfer run) that you will get the sword but Stefan won't join. Alondite: An SS sword. The boss of 4-E-2 drops it. Characters that can reach SS swords: Edward, Meg, Zihark, Elincia, Lucia, Makalov, Ike, Mist, Mia, Stefan, Renning. Wishblade: The SS lance. The sub-boss of 4-E-2 drops it. Aran, Tauroneo, Fiona, Marcia, Nephenee, Geoffrey, Danved, Oscar, Gatrie, Sigrun, and Tanith can use this. Urvan: The SS Axe. Caineghis gives this to Ike in a base conversation before Endgame. Nolan, Jill, Haar, Brom, Kieran, Ike, Titania, and Boyd can use Urvan. Double Bow: The SS Bow. An enemy sniper in 4-E-1 drops this. Leonardo, Astrid, Shinon, and Rolf can use this. Baselard: The SS dagger. Like the Vague Katti, this is found in the desert chapter, 4-3. It is 9 spaces left and 10 spaces up from the bottom-right square. Sothe, Heather, and Volke can use this. Rexaura: The SS light tome. Dropped by the boss of 4-E-1. Micaiah, Laura, Rhys, Oliver, and Lehran can use this. Rexbolt: The SS thunder tome. Muston gives this to you in a base convo in 4-P. Ilyana is the sole wielder of Rexbolt. Rexcalibur: The SS wind tome. Aimee gives this to you in a base convo in 4-1. Soren and Bastian can use this. RexFlame: The SS fire tome. Jorge and Daniel give this to you in a base conversation in 4-2. Tormod, Calill, and Sanaki can use this. Balberith: The SS dark tome. Dropped by the boss of 4-5. Pelleas and Lehran can use this. Matrona: An SS staff. Found in the only chest in 4-E-1. Ashera Staff: An SS staff. Lehran comes with it. Characters that can reach SS staves: Micaiah, Laura, Rhys, Oliver, Lehran. Hypothetical Questions 'n' Answers [QW3ST] Q: What is Boss Abuse? A: Boss Abuse is repeatedly attacking an enemy boss who has some means of healing itself with a character that cannot kill it. For example, say Fiona is barely able to damage the boss of 1-7. That particular boss is on a throne and recovers some HP every turn. So Fiona can just keep bashing away at him, wait for him to heal up, then attack again, then wait for him to heal, then attack again, etc. This allows you to gain large amounts of experience for characters. Sometimes, if the boss is particularly powerful or the character boss abusing is particularly fragile, it may be helpful/necessary to break the boss' weapon first by having a more durable character absorb the hits. Boss abuse can make any character pretty godly for most of the game, but is pretty boring and may take a while. In general, this guide assumes that no boss abuse is used, since by doing this all characters effectively wind up the same (i.e. invincible killing machines) for most of the game. Q: What is Staff Abuse? A: Staff abuse can refer to a few different things. It can refer to attacking priests/bishops who are equipped with staves that recover their HP, in a tactic similar to boss abuse. It can also refer to when you deliberately have your characters take damage for the sole purpose of leveling a staff user. Both methods are another way to gain “free” EXP. Again, this guide generally assumes that no staff abuse is used. Q: What is Battle Save Abuse? A: On easy and normal difficulties, the battle save option allows you to save in the middle of a battle. This can be exploited to manipulate the RNG, usually to make characters gain more stats than they ordinarily would (for example, to ensure that Mist gains strength and defense when she levels). Yet again, this guide is written on the assumption that no BSA is used. Q: What are stat averages? A: Stat averages are the estimated stats a character should have at any level. Basically, to find a character's average for a stat, multiply their growth times the amount of levels they have gained, and add it to their base (adjust for caps and promotion gains as well if necessary). For example, Sothe's average speed at level 13 Rogue is 25.4 (20 + 0.45*12). While these are a good tool to find how a character should theoretically turn out, the random nature of the game (and the existence of things like BEXP) make having a perfectly average character rather unlikely. Q: Why didn't you account for transfer data with [character]? A: It's possible that I forgot, but most of the time it's because either that character isn't likely to get transfers in the first place of the transfers aren't particularly significant. Of course, there's also the possibility that the reader is playing RD before PoR, which many people have done, and as such probably have no access to transfers. While I will mention them if I feel they really do mean something (like a str/spd transfer for Jill) in general I don't think they're really all that important. A nice boost, though, and helpful for hardcore OCD gamers like me who MUST! CAP! EVERYTHING! Q: Whats a tier list? A: A ranking of all of the characters based on some set of criteria. Tier lists are typically oriented around beating the game as quickly (or rather, in as low a turn count) as possible, and have varying ideas about how/when/if resources should be allocated. Q: What's PEMN? A: It means “Personal Experience Means Nothing”. What that means is that just because your character got such-and such stats does not mean that happens most of the time. This guide is assuming that characters stats are more or less consistent with their growths, and also accounting for bases and caps (I also try to account for BEXP when applicable, since that can boost stats beyond what they might ordinarily reach). Q: What is it about having a speed cap of 34 or more that is such a big deal? A: I actually don't think it's a HUGE deal, but the difference between 33 and 34 speed is more noticeable than the difference between any other set of numbers for endgame. You see, the boss of 4-E-3 has 30 speed, meaning people with 34 speed or more can double him. The Auras of 4-E-5 have 35 speed, meaning characters with 34 or more speed can double them with the help of Nasir's White Pool. Basically it means there are nine fairly durable enemies that a character with 34 speed could double but a character with less could not. Q: So if it's possible for characters to have such a variation in stats, isn't a character guide kind of worthless? A: Not necessarily. There are a lot of things that determine how good a character is beyond their random growths. It's important to know what their bases are, what their caps are, the good and bad of how their class/bases/etc function among their teams, how they relate to other characters, innate skills ...and, of course, its helpful to know how characters generally turn out, even if they're hardly guaranteed to end up that way. Q: Which characters promote automatically in the story? A: Micaiah automatically promotes to tier two after 1-E and to tier 3 at the beginning of Endgame. Sothe automatically promotes to tier 3 after 4-P. Ike automatically promotes to tier 3 after 3-E. All other characters promote upon using a Master Seal/Master Crown after reaching level 10, or by hitting level 21, except Mist who has her own special promotion item called a Holy Crown (although she can still promote by leveling). Q: A character died/retreated. Are they gone forever? A: Almost definitely. As far as I know, Rafiel is the only character who will ever come back if his HP falls to 0. Otherwise, they're gone for good. Outro and Contact Info [0UT] So that's it. I hope this guide proved useful in some way to you, and thank you for reading through it. If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me at email@example.com. I'll try to respond within a day or two, but don't hold me to that. As for thanks, I'd be remiss if I did not give a huge, enormous shout-out to serenesforest.net, which is where I got most of the raw character data (stats, growths, caps, skill activation rates, a whole plethora of things). Know that much of what is presented here was found there and is mostly just me trying to explain how this data affects each individual unit's performance. If you ever have any questions about FE, Serenes Forest is pretty much the place to look. I'd also like to thank the people of the SF and GFAQs boards, who's various debates helped me get a better understanding of some of the [dis] advantages of the various characters that I otherwise would have overlooked. This FAQ belongs to me, “me” referring to a user known as “thatfeguy”, and has been written for the purpose of being hosted on www.gamefaqs.com. Any potential updates will be set to this site. Other sites currently allowed to use this guide are www.neoseeker.com and supercheats.com. This guide is written for the video game “Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn” for the Wii, a game owned by Nintendo and Intelligent Studios, which I am not affiliated with (beyond the fact that I play their games, I guess). And...well...that's it! Good day, all.