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  3. Conquest Balance update (#1)

User Info: darkassasin333

darkassasin333
1 month ago#1
Hey all. I've recently come back to Conquest after learning how to make some basic edits to the game. I've been having a lot of fun with my balance pass over the cast, and I thought it'd be fun to share my changes and how they impact characters. I've decided to go roughly by recuitment order, but I'll toss in one in each post that I think is particularly fun.

Corrin:
-All weapon ranks except swords now start halfway to C (D and a half, I guess) instead of E. Tomes and Staves start at C, because they're gained upon promotion in Corrin's base class.
-Sturdy/Calm boons now grants 2 base Def/Res (from 1), and 15% growth (from 10%).
-Robust boon grants 5 base HP (from 3) and 20% growth (from 15%).
-Lucky boon grants 5 base Lck (from 3), and now grants 5% to all growth rates (in addition to its 20% Lck).
-Bane effects are unchanged.

Not any significant changes here, IMO. Both the weapon rank and boon changes are meant to broaden Corrin's viable builds without making any individual build meaningfully more powerful. It's just less annoying to work with a close-to-C rank weapon if you want to reclass Corrin into axes or lances, for example.

Felicia 1:
-Base Tome/Axe rank start halfway to C, and Swords/Bows start at C.
-Growth total adjusted from 260>285: Str 10>20, Mag 35>40, Spd 40>45, and Def 15>20.
-Base Str 5>6, Def 5>6, and Res 9>10.

Some minor buffs. Jakob/Felicia are pretty much designed to be useful, so I decided to just lean into it. The disparity between weapon ranks was chosen somewhat arbitrarily on which I thought were more in-character. It might be possible to reclass her into a Levin Sword Hero or Shining Bow BK if you wanted to. She'd eke by on class bases in those classes early game, and I think that would be fun to try. The base buffs make the early game a bit more consistent with M!Corrin, and the growth buffs theoretically help her offense keep up a bit more in the late game (although the magnitude of the growth buffs are probably too low to make any noticeable difference).

Jakob1:
-Base Sword/Lance rank start halfway to C, Tomes/Axes start at C.
-Growth total adjusted from 265>285: Mag 15>20, Skl 40>45, Spd 35>40, Def 25>30.
-Base HP 21>22, Str 8>9, Def 7>8

Hoo, that was all done begrudgingly. It's not a well-kept secret that Jakob is pretty much better than Felicia, at least in the early game. Jakob is one of the best balanced character in my opinion, so these changes are essentially just to keep "symmetry" with Felicia. Unlike with Felicia, I definitely chose the lower weapon ranks to sandbag Paladin Jakob. In any case, I don't think these changes significantly change how he performs in his role, just a little icing on a cake I'd rather be plain (but, y'know. Symmetry).

Bonus! Here's a particularly fun revamp.
Peri:
-Starts at level 11, from 10.
-Base Axe rank E>C, Swords D>C, and Tomes E>halfway to B.
-Growths: HP 30>35, Mag 0>40, and Lck 35>40.
-Base stats: Mag 0>8, Skl 9>10, Spd 13>14, Lck 9>11, and Res 10>13.
-(Universal: Paladins now have 4 base magic).

Peri has always been a bit underwhelming in my opinion. Wants to kill mages on enemy phase but doesn't quite have the means because her Res is only borderline and her javelin arm is a far cry from one-shotting them.

Well now with her base C swords and decent magic/resistance, good old Levin's got the cure for what ails her! Her personal skill gives +4 Magic, so with the right set up she absolutely decimates certain groups of mages. Her magic and resistance only get better upon promotion into a paladin, which gives her a genuinely unique and useful niche.
She still dies to 2 or so physical attacks (all the more so with the -20 avoid from the Levin Sword), so she's not the awakening-style answer to everything it may sound on paper. Even still, I feel that these changes have finally allowed her to realize the role she's always wanted to play.
All that not even mentioning her potential dark mage reclass options! Formerly useless, an insta-reclassed Peri will now serve as an offensively potent dark mage with a bit more bulk than Nyx.

I've had a lot of fun using her in situations where she's unexpectedly the best option.

Anyway! Thanks for reading. I'd love to hear any thoughts you have on the changes, or any interesting ways you'd balance some of the cast. I'll probably be back to post the rest of the characters and system-wide changes unless this post is totally DoA.
Seriously, who's officiating?

User Info: Thorscape

Thorscape
1 month ago#2
This isn't really all that balanced. These are outright buffs.

User Info: darkassasin333

darkassasin333
1 month ago#3
To be fair, raising up lower characters is one way to bring things to "balance". Of course, that's not to say Corrin or Jakob are "lower", haha. Pedantry aside though, that's mostly just a consequence of how I play the game. I've never had much fun by breezing through the game with all the broken stuff the game gives you, so I generally only play with significant restrictions.

I've reinforced some of these in the balance pass too. Among other things, I play with:
-No forging (All forges give no stat benefits)
-No supports (Still in the ROM, but...)
-Enemies on paralogues have void curse (I find the game's too easy after the huge influx of EXP)
-No stat boosters (Including food, tonics)
-Healing staves only (Usually more interesting to find different ways around problems)
-No Xander/Camilla/Leo/Shura/Izana (Technical rule is no character w/ internal lvl>15)
-Usually no reclassing, but I think it's a cool way to balance characters. I've been doing only 1 reclass per character in my current run.
-No online features (don't touch that orb)
-Only Armory/Item Shop in MyCastle (So no free weapons, lottery, etc.)

In general, I prefer buffs which result in more viable tactics for the player. I think making enemies statistically more powerful relative to your units usually results in a slower paced, less compelling form of difficulty (See Awakening Lunatic or 3H Maddening).

Anyway, I'm not trying to call you out or anything. Just some context for my decisions, aha.
Seriously, who's officiating?
(edited 1 month ago)

User Info: Thorscape

Thorscape
1 month ago#4
These are all cool things to mod. But I don't think you know what balance is.

User Info: darkassasin333

darkassasin333
1 month ago#5
Define it for me?
Seriously, who's officiating?

User Info: Thorscape

Thorscape
1 month ago#6
darkassasin333 posted...
Define it for me?
Bringing all units to parity with each other by raising stats and growths of (extremely) weak units like Arthur and Rinkah while reducing stats and growths of (extremely) powerful characters like Ryoma and most other royals. Yes this makes units more "samey" but that's the nature of balance sometimes.

A way to reduce this "samyness" is to alter starting levels and stats of weak joining characters like Owain (Revelations). Owain starts at lvl.12 in Ch.17 as a Dark Mage with 12 mag and 10 spd. Bumping his level to 15 and changing giving him 13 mag and 11 spd (roughly average for that lvl) puts him in line with other units like Inigo who joins in the same chapter with much more respectable stats. Owain could also start with a Speed Thunder tome as it he joins in the mid-game in Revelations. This allows him to stand out and become a viable unit in conjunction with Nyx who joins with similar stats two chapters earlier and 6 levels lower. He won't beat her out but he's much more viable now than he was before.

Another major balance would be altering weapons. Raijinto could be altered to have 13mt but no +4 str bonus for having it in the inventory. This keeps it as a powerful weapon and if Ryoma gets str screwed it doesn't really matter as he still has high starting strength and Bushido to fall back on which will give him the other 2 points of str taken away. It also makes switching weapons more important as with Raijinto in the inventory under normal circumstances there is no reason to ever not use it.

User Info: darkassasin333

darkassasin333
1 month ago#7
I do agree with the basic idea of bringing units to "parity", to a threshold of valuable contribution over the course of a playthrough. One of the most fun thing about playing Fire Emblem is how different units can be, from each other and even from themselves playthrough to playthrough.

To expand on that idea, I actually do think that having a diverse set of roles which are all valuable is a great way to allow multiple different units to contribute over the course, and is more fun to engage with as a player than strict "parity". I think the Conquest developers felt this way as well, and that's why we get units like Camilla.

Chapter 10 of Conquest is thought by many to be one of the best chapters in the series, and it was clearly designed with the intent of having an "overpowered" unit. Contextually speaking, Camilla is more powerful than any other unit in your army, and will remain so for quite some time. Obviously, it would make the game too easy to make every unit as powerful as her. Conversely, weakening her would mar the design of chapter 10, and arguably even parts of the following maps (such as the second-to-last room in chapter 11, where Camilla is one of the only consistent ways to clear it failing a decent Effie/Silas or a limited-use utility staff). Camilla also serves as a crutch for newer players who might otherwise be frustrated by the game, as she works as a relatively low effort solution to many problems. Camilla is better than Arthur, but this isn't a failing of design.

I've tried to keep this in mind while adjusting characters. I feel that I've allowed each character to perform a relatively unique and valuable niche, often using the benefit of hindsight to accomplish the developers' vision of what each should be able to accomplish. For example, Nyx is meant to be a glass cannon, but she fails in that role because she can't be expected to hit the enemies she should be killing. I've taken measures to fix that and allow her to perform well in her unique role. She's still no Camilla, but she'll be able to do things that Camilla can't in the mid-late game. I think that's fun.

(Also, I totally had an aneurysm at the though of trying to balance Revelations. Dear god, I'd have to remake pretty much every map and character to achieve anything close to Conquest level design.)
Seriously, who's officiating?
(edited 1 month ago)
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