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  1. The Pairing Thread

    FWIW I used Rexcalibur V/V for no dlc/no braves using a turn 1 setup (and no healing/resetup later). For enemies (and quite a bit of them), you'll need a long bow poke to get clean KOs because you are at 1 HP. That isn't really an issue for me, because I run 5 Spotpass Snipers... There are also really bulky enemies like Aegis+ Zerks that require multiple shots from long bow until you can "all in" the guy. Though, that's not a concern thanks to the generous turn count. If you aren't comfortable and don't want to use vengeance, I don't think your run will be impossible by any means. Having +42 Atk is quite a useful toy in the right hands. I've never had a use for healing followed up by a resetup. At the same time, I don't doubt it could be useful in certain circumstances. But I'm also the guy that reclasses 5 Wyvern Lords into 5 Snipers halfway through wave 1 to make easier setups. How many people actually use a second seal in the middle of the map? I can acknowledge it has the potential to be useful, but I've never done it. In terms of dual strikes, I either gun for 100% or emulate 0% (via unequipping). I don't see "fail to dual strike" as a harsh negative. It's free damage, but it has a hefty cost (requires some team building). Sometimes you just don't have the resources to get 100%, but you find ways to manage. One of them is by simply poking with a Sniper. Another is resorting to seemingly "bad" skills like Mag+2. For example, my no dlc/no rally Morgan doesn't run galeforce or 100% DS. Sometimes you have to bite the bullet. Setups in general are done unpaired. I like having setups done ASAP, so I'll get my lead Vengeance Sages (some runs use 1, some use 2) done on wave 0/turn 1. Because of the turn requirement to enter secret, I settle for the Sniper setups in wave 1. Go ahead and run proc stacking. You'll probably be successful. There's certainly quite a bit of planning for vengeance, but I think the perfect consistency is worth it.
  2. The Pairing Thread

    Yeah, if you're going to be procstacking, I would say LB/Aether/Luna/DS+/GF is probably the way to go. She's one of the best procstackers because she gets Aether/Luna. She also just so happens to be one of the best hard supports because she has DS+ (which is what Robin or Morgan want for V/V). Maribelle!Lucina (at least in no dlc) really shines because of both her mag mod and mag+2 skill (those stats add up for certain kills). Of course, once you throw in LB, there's a lot of leeway that lets Sumia perform that same role (where Maribelle's Mag lead becomes negligible and Sumia's Spd lead is just as useless). What's important here is that you're analyzing the stats you need and want. For example, in a V/V world, 75 Spd is hot garbage. If you double someone, that means someone else gets to attack you (and you're at 1 HP). So the only Spd stat you could want is to double enemies who don't attack back (read: Mire Fliers) or for a setup (eg; Ricken!Severa's Spd stat in no dlc/no rally). Do note that once you decide on a final Spd stat through pairings, it becomes quite hard to manipulate a Spd stat higher than your original calcs. So make sure you're happy with your team before you spend hours grinding your team (and it's too late to change your mind). Knowing that you want Lucina to be a lead procstacker, the fantastic top-of-the-line Sniper/Sage (something FeMU x Chrom love to pull off) seems slightly less-than-useful. Now I will say this: you don't need a proc to lead Sniper/Sage because the whole point is to generate damage through magical dual strikes. If Chrom proc-less + FeMU with a v/v setup (FeMU doesn't run mag+2 in no dlc/low deploy), then FeMU is supporting with just tomefaire. Now throw in children mods and double faire's damage (a la LB), and you're doing great damage. Don't sell your damage short because you only have LB. It isn't only LB because it has ridiculous advantages relative to faire. Sure, supporting is better with a faire (as is supporting with Agg). So keep it in the back of your mind that a star V/V Sage with only a faire in raw mag can [and will often] excel as a support for a Sniper. I should also let you know you can take this opinion very lightly because I don't have any DLC besides Apo. That's the real reason why all my challenge runs have the no dlc "modifier"... I can only guess that LB and Agg are going to pull more weight than you think (because they add +10 or 20 Atk depending on the gender). That fire power is something I can't tie with my own experiences. But I will say that a faire (without either LB or Agg) will get the job done if you play your cards right. I don't know how to measure how easier/simpler or even how many mistakes that DLC allows you to make over a no dlc counterpart. I don't have my no dlc/no braves .txt file with me (I think it had a few unimportant miscalcs), but from what I remember it was basically Rexcalibur and Long Bows carrying majority of the weight. I can't speak for Levin Sword Tricksters, but holy guacermole that sounds astronomically terribad. But if it's what you want to do, I say you should do it. Just keep in mind that if you sink so many resources into it--and you fail--it will be a huge regret. So don't fail! Tl;dr do your last paragraph
  3. The Pairing Thread

    I had success with Sage Maribelle!Lucina for no dlc/no braves. She hard supported Sage Morgan who lead V/V. That situation gives her more slots to play with (she skips Aether/Luna, and no dlc skips LB/AS+2). Especially when you have LB, 100% DS is easily accessible. Personally, I don't find 75 Spd to be something you need. But I understand it can be hard to pass up double damage on those bulky/high damage bosses. The biggest issue is a statement like "basically locked to... never..." It isn't very truthful because skills like procs [and sometimes even galeforce] could be replaced by something. How bad do you want to reach 75 Spd? Do you really think lacking a faire makes her dual strikes lacking (especially when LB is a straight double damage upgrade from a faire in a no dlc world)? Just some things for you to think about.
  4. As someone who mainly deals with Vengeance for Apo, there's a few things I should note. First, you don't need 100% DS to effectively run V/V. Half my teams unequip the partner to force a 0% DS situation (those situations like no dlc/no rally where 100% DS is either not available or not worth the investment). And Lucina's + Spouse isn't the only pair to hit 100% DS as well (although it is the easiest pair to hit 100% due to child mods combined with dual strike+). FeMU x Chrom as Sniper/Sage hits 100% without DLC, just to name one. There's also some builds you can dedicate to hitting 100% DS on non Dual Strike+ units that sometimes include niche skills like defender--a skill you would instantly throw out the window because +1 to all stats just for 1 Skl seems useless. Once you throw in DLC like LB, the Skl requirement does indeed get shot down quite a bit. Here's the setup for FeMU x Chrom to give you an example without DLC FeMU (+Mag/-Def Sage) Tomefaire/Vantage/Vengeance/HR+20/Galeforce Chrom (Sniper) Bowfaire/Prescience/Skl+2/HR+20/Charm FeMU leads with 43 (Skl) + 8 (Rallies) + 2 (Tonic) + 8 (Pair Up) [61] Chrom supports with 49 (Skl) + 8 (Rallies) + 2 (Tonic) + 2 (Skl+2) [61] [total 122] Chrom leads with 49 (Skl) + 8 (Rallies) + 2 (Tonic) +2 (Skl+2) +7 (Pair Up) [68] FeMU supports with 43 (Skl) + 8 (Rallies) +2 (Tonic) [53] [total 121] I can guess that your Lucina's mother is Sumia based on Dark Flier and Skl cap, but here's a great example of LB working overtime. MaMU (+Def/-Skl Sage) Olivia!Lucina (Dark Flier, lowest Skl mod with Dark Flier access) MaMU leads with 40 (Skl) + 10 (LB) + 10 (Rallies) + 2 (tonic) + 2 (AS+2) +3 (Pair up) [67] Lucina supports with 44 (Skl) + 10 (LB) + 10 (Rallies) + 2 (tonic) [66] [133 total] Lucina leads with 44 (Skl) + 10 (LB) + 10 (Rallies) + 2 (tonic) + 7 (pair up) [73] MaMU supports with 40 (Skl) + 10 (LB) + 10 (Rallies) + 2 (tonic) + 2 (AS+2) [64] [137 total] As you can see, even with some disgusting mod choice, LB destroys benchmarks. It seems to me you are not factoring in certain bonuses like rallies or pair up. I'll also note that it doesn't really make much sense to run Aether/Luna on a V/V pair. Mainly because V/V implies you want consistency (but if you want to, go ahead...). Awhile back, I tried to mess around with 100% DS, no vengeance in no dlc/no rally. I found a setup, but it didn't have enough damage (because no +42 Atk...) to actually beat turn requirements.
  5. The Pairing Thread

    Sniper/Sage is great in a limited environment where you need the stats. If you don't think that you need those stats from Sage, any magical pair should provide serviceable results. A good example of this would be FeMU x Chrom for both damage and the Skl factors (Sniper/Sage in particular hits 100% DS for both leads without DLC). Of course, if you don't need that, you can look for other conveniences like the extra Mov from Dark Flier, Dark Knight, and Valk; they aren't poor choices. You do have to note that most of the stats on a hybrid unit are actually fairly useless (Str probably will never play a role more important than Celica's Gale, the extra Def/Res is most likely not a factor at all, etc.). Even mov itself can be seen as obsolete. Some of my comps dedicate over half its slots to rescue bots. How much of Sage are you willing to sacrifice for the second best alternative? I guess in comps that run minimal bots, the mov can be useful. Just something to think about when deciding your final class. Tl;dr doesn't really matter, but I think you would enjoy sitting down to think about all the pros and cons.
  6. The Pairing Thread

    All bots (rescue and rally) can be spotpass units. Most recommendations are 1-4 rally bots (I use 2) and rescue bots fill in the rest of the deployment (I use up to 11). I chose 2 rally bots because I needed one with Spectrum and one without any +def for vengeance setups. The number 1 issue with a single rally bot is you have to skip out on free stats. If I only had 1, I'd probably use Spec/Str/Mag/Skl/Spd (I don't have rally heart), and you could sub heart for 1. Since you do have heart, you're missing out on 2 rallies (whichever one you drop + luk). If someone has access to Sage and Sorc, then yes, switch. " too many of anything makes for an unbalanced team overall " isn't exactly true. Diversity isn't better. Better is better. Since the weapon in question is almost always going to be Celica's Gale, the only difference in performance is the caps and weapon ranks. Sage has [pretty much] strictly better caps and access to staff rank for rescue (which has marginal value if you have a lot of rescue bots, but it does come into play in certain waves). Manakete is a poor class choice. You're looking at a raw Str/Def perspective, which is useful when clearing the story. In Apo, however, your Def becomes more and more negligible. Enemies start carrying Luna+ in high frequency which means your Def is only half value. Some even carry Aether with rightful god. Having 36 Def isn't as useful as you think. The true durability stat is going to be HP, which is capped at 80 before any boosts (which is usually only going to be a tonic for 85). Having that much HP usually means you live at least 1 hit of anything (depending on the enemies in question). This isn't a question of my playstyle vs yours. Def is widely considered as a dump stat. The only value I make of it is making an easier vengeance setup--not for taking more hits. Next I need to address the Atk stat. Having a higher Atk stat doesn't mean you do more damage over an entire fight. Combat isn't as simple as you attack once, enemy attacks, you double attack (if you even have the Spd for it). If that's all combat was, then your Atk stat would mean doing more damage over an entire fight. But there are more factors--brave and pair up. Brave literally doubles your damage at the cost of having a lower Atk. Valflame has an effective Mt of 21 (16 +5 mag it offers) and Celica's Gale has a Mt of 9 (4 +5 Forge). At a glance, Valflame has 12 more Mt than Celica's, but Valflame actually has a worse performance because of the brave effect. Let's say you want to kill an enemy before they retaliate. Valflame would need to nuke someone for 80 (or 99) HP in one shot. Celica's Gale only needs to do 40 (or 50) damage per attack (since it's brave). This isn't even considering another interesting component for pair up. Every attack you make also gives a chance for a dual strike (which you can reach 100% with enough Skl and/or Dual Strike+). This means your ideal combat for a non-brave will be You, Partner, Enemy, You, Partner for a grand total of 4 attacks. Braves on the other hand will have an ideal combat of You, Partner, Partner, You, Partner, Partner, Enemy, You, Partner, Partner, You, Partner, Partner for a grand total of 12 attacks (since your partner will have a brave weapon as well). More often than not, all enemies are dead at the end of the 6th attack (so the enemy doesn't do any damage to you). There is no brave dragonstone. Its high Str stat is completely inferior to a brave weapon. Again, this isn't a playstyle choice. I strongly suggest you not take DG+. Banking on a dual guard is not a good tactic to make. You can take pretty much most things and heal up the same or next turn. If you need to rig a dual guard to complete a wave, then you made a mistake somewhere.
  7. The Pairing Thread

    I'll try to say things specific to your team, but there's a few "in general" suggestions as well. For starters, you should consider using your deployment slots differently. You have a pair up unit for Olivia, and you don't have any rescue bots. More often than not, a bot who only uses a rescue gets more mileage than just another combat unit/pair. He gives Olivia +1 Mov, but a rescue bot can give like +30 Mov. Your only other bots (rally), Skl/Luk--in particular Skl--are extremely useful. Not only do they boost hit rate (although you do have LB, which makes hit less of an issue), Skl also boosts dual strike percentage. Rally skill applies to the back, so that's 8 Skl you're missing, which can be important for hitting 100%. In class selection, there's a few Sorcs and hybrid classes. Sage is almost always better than Sorc. The only reason you would ever take a Sorc is if you had a dedicated crit build, which I didn't see. Hyrbid classes are versatile, but they just don't compete with a specialized class like Sage or Wyvern Lord. I also see some Assassins sprinkled into the mix, but they aren't a go-to class. They suffer from having too much Spd that doesn't matter. Having more Spd doesn't make you a better unit. There's no difference in doubling between someone with 75 Spd and 88 Spd. It looks like the 88 is better because it's higher, but it doesn't actually help. That's why you see a lot of discussion around high Atk/low Spd Wyvern Lord, but still getting 75 Spd (through bonuses). That unit will be much more relevant than a low Atk/high Spd class getting 75 Spd. I also saw a Manakete in there, but that's not going to work well. "Tanking" doesn't really exist in Apo. You want full damage on all combat units. That usually limits all weapon discussion to only braves, but there are some exceptions like the long bow. The dragonstone doesn't bring enough utility (like 3 range that can proc/dual strike) to skip out on brave effect. You have no Snipers, which is somewhat surprising. Speaking of "tanking" there are some skills like dual guard+ which are pretty bad. "When is dual guard+ helpful?" Only when it procs and you would have died (had it not). If dual guard never procs, then it didn't help you. If it did proc--but you didn't need it--, then it didn't help you. If it did proc--and you needed it--, then you made a really bad play. You banked on getting a dual guard, which isn't a good idea. Armsthrift is bad because you have an unlimited convoy. Crit skills are bad without a dedicated crit build. You'll get more mileage out of proc stacking damage than you do single proc. Self healing through Nos/Aversa's/Sol is bad because you forgo braves/an actual damage proc.
  8. The Pairing Thread

    Magical/Magical, Physical/Physical, Sniper/Magical are going to be 3 cookie cutter class pairs. That doesn't mean you can't get other pair types to work, it's just that those 3 capitalize on each other. There are exceptions like Bride being a physical class that gives magic pair up or some classes like Hero giving neutral pair ups. There's obviously more to synergy than pair up stats, but it's something to keep in mind.
  9. The Pairing Thread

    There's no realistic way to get Aversa's Night; Nosferatu can be purchased as soon as you get the wireless menu (which, Robin would seal to dark mage around this time). Armsthrift seems nice, but the game hands you enough funds to handle the main game. And when your talking post game, funds are ignored since the convoy is endless (you can bring as many items as needed). Going into Merc at all isn't something that makes your life easier either, but that's just another issue altogether.
  10. The Pairing Thread

    Females are more desirable as staff bots because they get access to Falcon or Valk. Their skill sets are going to be auras and mag boosts, but valks will take acrobat. Their skill slots aren't in demand, so it's a matter of preference between longer rescue range vs mobility around specific terrain like the water or mountain. There aren't any 8 Mov male staffers (and I'd rank Mov to be more important than staff range). For example, the extra mag and mov matters when doing certain movements like wave 4 against the dark fliers. I also wouldn't recommend using boots on a bot, but rather on a unit the bot will rescue. Something like hex/anathema/mov+1/filler/filler is pretty much cookie cutter. Filler can be acrobat and mag boosters (lb, mag+2, as+2...). The parents are fine, but they don't always have the class pool and stats that children have. I actually like a higher bot:combat ratio. If you did cut the parents, you'd end up with something like 11 bots (2 rally/9 rescue). Interestingly enough, all 4 combat pairs have an option for a Sniper, so you also have plenty of utility even in the combat slots.
  11. Is war cleric a bad class?

    War Monk/Cleric is a 40 Str cap, mixed offense-no Spd pair up. Because of braves, the magical weapons are far from relevance in terms of damage. Targeting Res isn't as good as doubling your damage output. It has staff utility, but there are very few scenarios where a combat unit uses a rescue instead of an attack (so it's kinda useful). It would have had some potential if its pair up behaved similar to bride (physical unit with mag/spd pair up) or if it was some female berserker in caps/pair counterpart that might have rivaled some females who end as hero.
  12. The Pairing Thread

    The only non-Chrom!Cynthia that gets mentioned is going to be Henry (who many, many kids want). Gaius is already going to Noire/Kjelle, so he gets ruled out (and Frederick is excluded from the start). If you're argument was Henry!Cynthia gets vengeance, so he's better, that's good enough to convince me. But that doesn't seem to be the case here (where vengeance doesn't seem to hold much value to you). I don't think I explained the offense and defense part of my post as well as I wanted it. For 99% of the time, defensive stats are dump stats that will hold zero relevance. The 1% of the time is for vengeance setups, where Def is actually useful (sometimes even a desired stat for simple setups on certain enemy phases). Resistance on the other hand, isn't used in offense or vengeance setups. So that makes it doubly negligible (where Def is usually negligible). On top of that, most stats on a hard support are actually ignored. Spd, being one of the most favored stat in FE history, turns out to be a dump stat on most hard supports like Gerome. In a world where you never lead, the only stats you care about are Str/Mag (whichever is applicable, Str in Berserker Gerome's case), Skl, and Luk (hit rate). Off attack stat, Spd, and durability stats--technically even HP don't matter. That's a bit of an extreme case (and why Vaike!Gerome got as big as he is today). When you only care about raw damage, max Str mods Berserker is easily a staple to a team. His only problem is a hit issue (since Berserker has that juicy Skl stat and Vaike offers no good hit skills), which is why Henry pops up in recommendations (hexnathema is a beautiful thing). And if you're not in Berserker, that usually means he's in Warrior (not Paladin). Sure, Paladin is a +2 Spd pair up (so +4 Spd on pair up total), but Paladin's 42 Str is fairly low to Warriors 48 (or Berserker's 50). If you opted for Paladin instead of Berserker, you lose out on 8 Str (4 Dmg/Swing, over 8 attacks; 32 Dmg/combat) and +3 Str pair up (~1 Dmg/Swing, so only ~8 Dmg/combat) and the extra +1 Spd pair up (some units like Lon'qu!Severa at Wyvern Lord want a Berserker support). One of the best things about Apo is how hard it is to raise damage in general thanks to PavGis+ and Dragonskin (it takes ~4 points of Atk to do ~1 extra damage). The problem in this situation is that you're forfeiting so much in raw stats over an entire round of combat. The small numbers don't hurt much, but ending in Paladin is a huge blow to damage. Is Paladin really offering something as good as literally half of an enemy's hp? My guess is no, probably not. Damage is technically twice as valuable on a hard support because they ignore PavGis+ since it doesn't proc on dual strikes. Had Gerome been leading against one that had them, the difference would be much less (2 Dmg/Swing). But we don't live in a world where a hard support's performance is measured in his leading abilities.
  13. The Pairing Thread

    If you like a certain pairing, then do it. If you are completely against a pairing (like Chrom/Sumia), then don't do it. Trust me on this: don't make a team you don't like. I won't get into why you should or shouldn't do Chrom/Sumia, but know that Sumia is happy to take Henry (also know that her spouse pool is limited and Cynthia actually likes Chrom). Gerome wants Vaike or Henry as his top 2. One has slightly higher damage and one has slightly higher utility (both end in Berserker--his primary end class). Still, bowfaire warrior isn't that much of a step down. Usually Kellam or Frederick don't marry--Vaike is actually a really good father for hard supports. I wouldn't brush off Virion either. Think about it like this: Gerome would take Vaike, Stahl, Virion and Henry, Yarne would take all 4 as well. Nah would take all 4 as well, but Virion would be a distant 4th (Sniper makes anyone relevant, but sometimes you want to be more than "relevant"). Also, there's no such thing as a viable tank in Apotheosis. That's because tanking isn't viable. It's a game of pure offense, so keep that in mind. It's also one reasons why Sage is pretty much strictly better than Sorcerer (so Brady would actually just go Sage since it has the better caps). Morgan is in a place that depends on how you want to decide "pick" order. Robin and Chrom no question about it want each other as spouses. It's one of, if not the, best pairing in the game. The problem is that Morgan, Lucina, and Lucina's potential siblings don't want that pairing. Morgan wants mods + Lucina spouse. Lucina doesn't care as long as she gets galeforce, but she'd prefer Maribelle or Sumia. She somewhat wants Morgan as a spouse too, and siblings can't S-rank. Some people like Cynthia want Chrom. What's even more ironic is that Morgan wants mods from hilariously awkward pairings (Lon'qu!Laurent, Lon'qu!Noire, Libra!Brady, Ricken!Laurent just to name a few). Not many people recommends those Morgans, and part of it is because nobody recommends those pairings (although Libra!Brady isn't that bad, it's just that some people actually like Libra). Morgan will do everything you need from pretty much any parent. If you ever decide to do something like no dlc/no rally or no dlc/no braves, then picking out Morgan's mods actually can be a deal breaker. It's hard to believe that +1 Skl on Morgan can be more useful than multiple children combined, so don't worry about it. Your asset will vary depending on how you want Robin and Morgan to play. Mag, Spd, Str, and Skl all have pretty good niches. Def is the default flaw since it hurts you the least (-1 Luk as opposed to hurting those 4 offensive stats). So, pick a final class you want for Robin and Morgan and move on from there. Just do FeMU x Chrom and Stahl!Gerome. It seems to me that you like those pairings in your two posts. There's nothing wrong in liking a pairing, but do know some end goals like Gerome wants Berserker. That's just so you understand why everyone you see recommends Vaike or Henry for him--it's not to flat out discourage you. Know what you're losing, but also know what you get (like Brady should end Sage and not Sorcerer). Sometimes you'll lock in a pairing and might not know all the benefits that come with it (and that's ok, just ask and we'd be happy to spread some info).
  14. The Pairing Thread

    It's usually the case that Vaike goes to a son for the male exclusive Berserker (which is the best physical hard support). So, he's most common with Gerome or Yarne. He also offers axefaire to females, so something like Vaike!Nah is somewhat applicable. Vaike!Kjelle doesn't get galeforce. Typically, Kjelle and Noire will get dibs on the gale dads (while Nah gets the short stick since she doesn't have a damage proc), which leads to Gaius and Donnel being taken from the get-go. The tl;dr is Kjelle doesn't care which one she gets, but Noire wants Gaius. So no, Vaike's best child isn't Kjelle. Brady and Cynthia both don't mind either pairings. It would depend on which one do you want to have vengeance (if you wanted it at all). Brady gets his entire base kit with Luna from her mother. Gaius!Cynthia would need a +2 Spd pair up to skip AS+2 (as a DF) to hit 75. Sages have the most synergy, but won't have the pair up. Berserkers have bad synergy (the only physical/magical pair I'd recommend are with Sniper), but they have the pair up. You could fish for a Hero, but females end here more often than males (who end on those 2 classes usually). Gregor!Laurent is the classic Laurent. Virion is an interesting father: he provides everything that isn't a proc. Good mods with Sniper or Sage. You might see this pairing with Yarne since he wants hit (HR+20 from sniper) and has natural berserker. Same for Gerome (but without natural berserker he has Warrior, which is somewhat of a downgrade). Of course, there are others that would take him like Virion!Severa. Hell, anyone becomes relevant with Sniper since 3 range makes anyone usable (even without a proc).
  15. The Pairing Thread

    Mods account for a pitiful amount of damage (but it can be relevant). You have so many sources of damage (procs, dual strikes, crits, braves, etc.), that dealing an extra single digit damage bonus per swing isn't exactly a deal breaker. It sucks, but the multipliers from enemy's defenses play in your favor if you think about it. The only enemies that you actually care about dealing damage to are the ones with dragonskin combined with pavgis+ that against you. On one side of the coin, you only deal 1/4 of damage. On the other side, you have the revelations that it takes 4x as many points into might that change your damage +1, so it's not the end of the world. You won't fail because you def stacked, you just don't do as much damage as a team that stacked might. That being said, there are some incredibly powerful Mag benchmarks that puts certain strats on the table. Kellam!Nah!Morgan isn't exactly a prime candidate for them.