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User Info: UltraHotWings

UltraHotWings
4 weeks ago#1
So, huge fan of the series despite being new (I got into EO4 and now am making my way through EO5). Being a longtime JRPG fan, I've been playing through on Advanced difficulty (which may be a problem in hindsight). Problem is, I hit the boss of the stratum (that dragon is a tough dude), and I'm completely stumped. Every single variation of the basic strategy that I've used up until this point that has worked absolutely like clockwork with encounters and FOE's alike (red FOE's fall crumple like no tomorrow) has basically been rendered completely useless and moot against him. For reference, here is the party I am running and the strat I've been using:

Front-Line:

Blade Dancer
*Katana Mastery (5/10)
*Duel (3/10)
*Swallow Soar (3/10)
*Hell Slash (10/10)
*Reblossom (10/10)
*HP Up (1/10)
*Multi-Katana (1/10)
*Phys ATK Up (8/10)
*Meteor Rain (10/10)
(Also has Power Charge from one of the katanas, as well as HP+, LUC+, and VIT+)

Spirit Evoker
*Wraith Mastery (10/10)
*Summon Wraith (10/10)
*Necromancy (1/10)
*Gravekeeping (3/10)
*Reincarnation (10/10)
*Life Exchange (5/10)
*Burden Shift (5/10)
*Soul Trade (1/10)
*Poison Bomb (2/10)
*Flame Bomb (3/10)
*Ice Bomb (3/10)

Phantom Duelist
*Rapier Mastery (1/10)
*Predict (2/10)
*Phantom Swords (5/10)
*Lure (4/10)
*Sylphid (10/10)
*Counter Boost (10/10)
*Ray of Light (10/10)
*Lightweight (10/10)

Backline:
Elemancer
*Magi Mastery (5/10)
*Magic ATK Up (4/10)
*Quick Chant (10/10)
*Focus Chant (5/10)
*All three basic elemental spells (5/10)
*All three master elemental spells (3/10)
*Cutting Costs (10/10)

Divine Herald:
*Prayer Mastery (10/10)
*Gospel (5/10)
*Appease Spirits (5/10)
*Benevolence (5/10)
*Ruinous Prayer (5/10)
*Aegis Prayer (9/10)
*All three elemental prayers (3/10)
*Dance Oracle (3/10)
*Holy Flame (2/10)
*Split Spirits (2/10)

The whole setup is that the Fencer keeps using "Predict" to build up aggro through stacks of Ray of Light while also decreasing enemy accuracy with Phantom Swords. This also facilitates 3-4 hits in a counterattack from a dodge, which when combined with an elemental prayer, would hit for decent damage every counterattack. Lure is the reason the Necromancer is in the front row (aside from her being safe from attacks that pierce lines, since the Fencer is drawing all attacks to them).

Masurao basically alternates between Power Charge/Meteor Rain and Power Charge/Hell Slash. The Power Charge/Hell Slash used in combination with Lure ensures an absolute ton of damage for punishment of an enemy whiff.

Necro is used as a primary healer in a pinch (when the Shaman's three different sources of passive heals is being outdone by the enemy's damage output), but her primary focus is dealing status ailments and dealing additional damage through the elemental bombs. Also, Hell Slash follows up the Wraith attacks, and even if I sacrifice a wraith, one of the three skills always ensures I have three.

Warlock is just basically smashing with Focus Chant and a spell. Cutting Costs keeps her viability in the battle longer.

The problem is the dragon basically wipes my DPS before I even get a chance to set-up. Even with Aegis Prayer and the level-up to my Masurao's HP-Up, she gets auto-killed if she gets hit, and the Fencer's aggro is working against me because all line-based attacks will hit her (and my Necro, but she's built bulky). I've been trying to figure out a way to get my Masurao to dodge on the same level as my Fencer (since she can't survive a hit), but I'm not sure what to do. My Shaman used to have those levels in Aegis Prayer dumped into Haste Prayer, but even with six or seven points, it's not reliable enough. I was thinking of adding points to Wind Curtain, but that only helps with physical attacks.

User Info: Enfinete

Enfinete
4 weeks ago#2
This boss has fairly high accuracy vs others. You probably want to adjust gears so that taking a hit doesn’t kill you, maybe.
"The Story will become Legend...." - From Riviera: The Promised Land

User Info: UltraHotWings

UltraHotWings
4 weeks ago#3
Enfinete posted...
This boss has fairly high accuracy vs others. You probably want to adjust gears so that taking a hit doesn’t kill you, maybe.


Yeah, every time I challenge him, the issues is I get my stacks on my Fencer, but... the only thing I miss from my Botanist is the guaranteed rez. I was wondering if whether a maxed out Soul Trade on my Necro is almost a guaranteed revive (since right now Soul Trade and LV5 Cavalry Arrival on my Shaman are like throwing darts at a board) and I seem to have terrible luck getting cabbages to buy Nectars.

I also was wondering if maybe doing a Rest on my Shaman and putting those points from Aegis Prayer to Vitality Prayer would help soften the blow... or even take the points from the offensive prayers and just run maxed Aegis/Vitality/Ruinous(or Haste) and turn her from a red mage-esque character into a full blown white mage. It would really reduce the DPS output, but at the same time, would provide more bulk to the party.

User Info: Hemless

Hemless
4 weeks ago#4
Yeah, without magic guard on the Warlock or fierce shield on the Necro you have no way to keep the Blade Dancer alive in this fight without equipping some armor.

Also when it is in Magic (elemental) form you don't want more than one buff active because Clear Breath deals more damage for every active buff.

If all else fails - Depending on how reliable your Fencer and Necro are at dodging/tanking hits (only one of them needs to live) - you can have a 3 man core of a Frontliner (does whatever is necessary to stay alive, like the defend command/chip damage/item user) - The Warlock (damage dealer) - Shaman (healer/item user). Have these 3 focus on taking down the dragon, reviving the other every now then when it's safe to use them for Union skills or to deal chip damage before dying again.

With a good supply of Nectars you should be able to take down The dragon.

Also, you have your own unique builds going that aren't terrible, but if you want to "min-max" type builds Zeoknight's faq has them - I'd say keep going with what you have though.
I need to stop losing my passwords..
(edited 4 weeks ago)

User Info: UltraHotWings

UltraHotWings
4 weeks ago#5
Hemless posted...
Also when it is in Magic (elemental) form you don't want more than one buff active because Clear Breath deals more damage for every active buff.


That... explains SO much. I've pretty much lived on having three buffs almost all the time. I usually never buff in an RPG, but EO4 has taught me pretty thoroughly (and painfully) that I can't bulldoze my way through this series the way I do in most JRPG games.

Does Magic Guard and Fierce Shield stack, or should I just run it on my Necro?

Once my fencer hits about four or five stacks, she pretty much never gets hit. I've had her solo FOE's and the last Stratum Boss while the rest of the party lay dead at her feet. The necro actually is pretty bulky. She has the highest DEF, Magic DEF, and HP of the whole party (and she was like that when she was originally my Botanist, too) because of the armor and amulets I used.

Honestly, the biggest issue has been the fact that my biggest sources of damage (Blade Dancer and Warlock) seem to be allergic to living. And dodging. The other three could chip damage to victory, but TP is limited, sadly. And Nectars seem to be pretty dry in supply. For some reason, I can NEVER seem to get those cabbages when I go to get them. I have a whole load of supply for getting the Theraca A/B, though. I'll never run out of those...

I'll definitely check out that FAQ and see what I can do to tweak the party. Thanks for that heads up! :D

User Info: UltraHotWings

UltraHotWings
4 weeks ago#6
(Not sure how to edit, but I thought you were talking about Soul Candy and not Fierce Shield. That's my bad. I might actually invest into that skill tree to save my Blade Dancer.)

User Info: Hemless

Hemless
4 weeks ago#7
S'all good, for sure keep playing these games on expert or above - it's the best experience.

I guess my parting tip will be -

When using Fierce shield the Wraith will protect the left slot of front row first, so even if it is overwhelmed by an AOE attack it will still take damage for at least that one party member.

I'll remain cryptic about everything else so you can discover on your own, but reading that FAQ is akin to eating the apple of knowledge. Tainted by the concept of Min and Maxil, cast out of the paradise of casual Etrians.
I need to stop losing my passwords..

User Info: UltraHotWings

UltraHotWings
4 weeks ago#8
Hemless posted...
S'all good, for sure keep playing these games on expert or above - it's the best experience.
For sure! I paid for a game that I knew offered a punishing challenge and sweet, sweet victory when you finally... FINALLY overcame that boss. Lowering the difficulty feels like a cop-out.

Hemless posted...
I'll remain cryptic about everything else so you can discover on your own, but reading that FAQ is akin to eating the apple of knowledge. Tainted by the concept of Min and Maxil, cast out of the paradise of casual Etrians.
Min/Max is more fun than trying to pure optimize a party, IMHO. Also, I've always been a fan of doing gimmicks and the thrill of boom or bust. Sure, I could run a standard, "Hey, here's a giant shield and here's a medic that can heal (and overheal) and here's a frontliner that can do massive damage through chains.", but then it'd just feel like some boring old standard RPG... and if I wanted that, I'd have played another game instead.

I fell in love with the Min/Max concept in EO4 when my Landy and my Imperial were both arguing with each other who did the most damage, my arcanist was just constantly putting down circles for passive heals, my dancer was doing line heals and buffs, and my healer was... doing what healers do. Honestly, the thing I miss the most in this game was how ridiculously OP the Landy and Imperial were when built and supported properly (and that's where I fell head over heels with chains and follow-ups with my Landy) and yet neither were glass cannons. Probably made the last stratum and postgame a bit easier than it needed to be.

I think I might actually do a "Rest" and re-spec the party. As much as I love Dance Oracle (and I know the Min/Max guide says to abuse it), I think sacrificing that extra damage to keep my Blade Dancer alive is priority, so I might take those points and send them over to Aegis and Vitality prayer (extra beef and extra shield for everyone) and then slowly bring myself back to the offensive prayers.

Also never realized how much better Layered Bloom was over Meteor Rain as a non-Hell Slash option, but after reading that guide, I think I might go for it. I have an EXP boosting item somewhere, and honestly, after taking out four Sonar Worms in one fight (the secret area of Lv. 16) and getting two level-ups after that fight, I'm not as worried about the level-loss after a rest. Seriously, Hell Slash/Lure/Sylphid/Counter Boost and the wraiths attacking pretty much turn those worms into jokes, since they will always strike first. Miss my Fencer six times, and the Hell Slash/Lure pretty much hits them six times for boatloads of damage. Only thing that always trips me up is when the enemy ignores aggro (or inflicts status ailments on my Fencer), so I'll build around protecting them and preventing that.

Thanks for all your help! It's been a really big help on figuring out how to re-spec without actually going down the road of, "Should I change classes and sacrifice all those levels? Should I trade my Elemancer for a Hawk Mastery? Should I give up on the Blade Dancer and bring in a Harbinger instead?" kind of deal.

User Info: Thard_Verad

Thard_Verad
4 weeks ago#9
Before you totally give up on the Blade Dancer, at least try it with three swords and body armor. It might help your survivability.
"Many in harmony surpass one in perfection." - Guildmaster, Etrian Odyssey II
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