The Let's Play Archive

Etrian Odyssey 2 Untold: The Fafnir Knight

by Ragnar Homsar, Dr. Fetus

Part 156: Fafnir

Fafnir is a class entirely new to EO2U that has something of a unique design, gameplay-wise. Fafnir is designed around the Force system, and the Force system in EO2U is, arguably, designed around Fafnir. Without Fafnir's Force Boost, Transform, he's one of the weakest classes in the game: low damage, low survivability, bad TP pool (although that applies to Transform as well), low speed, and susceptible to being disabled.

During Transform, Fafnir is an entirely different story. With a lot of skill points and after a certain point in Story mode, Fafnir becomes, bar none, the single best damage class in the entire game. Barely anyone can keep up with him with regards to damage, not just because of Transform's innate damage boost, but because the skills that are available only during Transform have such ludicrous damage even without the damage boost. Transformed Fafnir also excels because of the fact that he relies almost solely on elemental damage, which is incredibly strong in EO2U.

Part of why Fafnir is so strong is attributable to the fact that he's the only class exclusive to Story mode--you can't just create a new Fafnir in Classic without having beaten the game already, and using New Game+ on a Story file. In the Story party, Fafnir has to be strong, due to the Story party's default composition of 4 supports, one of which can conditionally deal good damage, while the other two can kind of contribute damage, but still not a lot. Fafnir in Classic mode, by extension, is kind of ridiculous, since you can put him in a more balanced party and, most importantly, pair him up with a Troubadour. I only need say this about how strong that duo is: Ranger and Milly, combined, were able to basically dual-handedly take down Basilisk in 4 turns, and Scylla, who has a massive HP pool and is a marathon of a fight in Story mode, in 5 turns.


Level 1
HP: 33
TP: 19
STR: 9
TEC: 6
VIT: 6
AGI: 5
LUC: 5

Level 50
HP: 226
TP: 180
STR: 34
TEC: 31
VIT: 28
AGI: 20
LUC: 21

Level 99
HP: 516
TP: 341
STR: 66
TEC: 61
VIT: 56
AGI: 38
LUC: 40

Innate weapon choices: Sword, Katana

Innate armor choices: Light armor, Clothes

Common passives: HP Up, TP Up, Phys ATK Up, Elem ATK Up, Mine

As mentioned above, Fafnir has absolutely terrible AGI and LUC, meaning he's slow as fuck and is really susceptible to being hit with ailments and binds, mediocre VIT, meaning he can't take too many hits but won't die to a stiff breeze, and good STR and TEC. He's also fairly unique in that he can equip both swords and katanas--I usually stick with katanas since they provide bigger ATK boosts than swords.

It's worth noting that Fafnir cannot reclass into another class, nor can he be reclassed into.

Blade Mastery
Requirements: None

Required to learn Fafnir attack skills. Passively increases damage dealt with swords and katanas. If the user knows some combination of Blade Mastery, Sword Mastery, and Katana Mastery, whichever passive gives the larget bonus is applied.

Sonic Raid
Requirements: Blade Mastery level 1
Required equipment: Sword or Katana
Body parts used: Arms

Deals melee STR-based Cut damage to one enemy at the start of the turn. Has +10 base accuracy at all levels.

A very basic skill, aside from the fact that it goes first in the turn order. It's very possible to have a few instances where an enemy is at really low HP and you just want to kill them very quickly, in which case Sonic Raid is useful. I wouldn't invest more than one point into it, though, especially given that Fafnir is incredibly skill point hungry.

Gale Rush
Requirements: Sonic Raid level 5
Required equipment: Sword or Katana
Body parts used: Arms

Deals 2-3 instances of melee STR-based Cut damage to one enemy. Has a 200% speed modifier at all levels.

Gale Rush is basically Fafnir's most consistent skill damage-wise outside of Transform, and that is both its blessing and its curse. While it's theoretically useful in the midgame, where Fafnir will be spending a lot of time untransformed, in the lategame it falls off significantly due to the fact that you'll most likely have several Force Mastery skills, plus Axcelas and potentially other party members who can manipulate Force. I'd personally advise ignoring Gale Rush.

Flame/Freeze/Shock Sabre
Requirements: Blade Mastery level 3
Required equipment: Sword or Katana
Body parts used: Arms

Deals melee STR-based Cut+Fire/Ice/Volt damage to one enemy. Has a 90% speed modifier and +10 base accuracy at all levels.

Fafnir's bread-and-butter skills. While the Sabres themselves suck a lot, they also simultaneously need to be maxed out at least eventually, since their levels are what the Waves are based off of.

Delayed Chase
Requirements: Blade Mastery level 5
Required equipment: Sword or Katana
Body parts used: Arms

On the turn after use, if the user uses a skill that deals elemental damage, also adds a melee STR-based Cut+Element attack to all enemies hit with an element. The added hit has +50 base accuracy.

One of Fafnir's better early and midgame skills. The damage starts to peak off as the game goes on, but in the aformentioned early and midgame, the amount of damage Fafnir gets from Delayed Chase relative to how much TP it costs is very nice. You'll still want to keep it leveled up and eventually maxed out once the late and postgame hit, though, since Blade Recoil depends on Delayed Chase's level.

Requirements: Blade Mastery level 7
Required equipment: Sword or Katana
Body parts used: Arms

Deals melee STR-based Cut damage to one enemy. If the initial target is killed by Overkiller, deals the same amount of damage to all enemies. Has a 90% speed modifier and +10 base accuracy at all levels.

A really weird and situational skill with absolutely terrible damage for how much TP it costs. Skip it.

Requirements: Blade Mastery level 10
Required equipment: Sword or Katana
Body parts used: Arms

Deals melee STR-based Cut damage to one enemy. Damage is reduced based on the number of turns that have passed since Resonance was last used: 75% reduction for 1 turn, 50% reduction for 2 turns, 25% reduction for 3 turns, and Resonance returns to full damage 4 turns after the last used. If Resonance is used multiple times in the same turn (Double Action, Action Boost, Accelerate), its damage is not reduced for that turn. Has +15 base accuracy at all levels.

Resonance's consecutive use penalty sucks, but it's also, at the same time, Fafnir's best damage option when untransformed. It's something you'll want once you have the Sabres and Delayed Chase up to good levels.

Full Slash
Requirements: Resonance level 3
Required equipment: Sword or Katana
Body parts used: Arms

Deals melee STR-based Cut damage to one enemy. The damage is multiplied by the target's current percent HP--it deals full damage if the enemy is at 100% HP, half damage if it's at 50% HP, etc. Has a 50% speed modifier and +10 base accuracy at all levels.

Another strange gimmick skill that's not worth investing in. It just gets worse and worse as fights goes on.

Force Mastery
Requirements: None

Required to learn Force skills. Passively increases the user's Force gain from non-fixed sources.

Once you have the Sabres and Delayed Chase up to levels you're comfortable with, immediately start investing in Force Mastery. Not only are a bunch of the skills it unlocks very useful, the passive bonus itself is also great.

Vital/Mind Shut
Requirements: Force Mastery level 1
Body parts used: Head

Reduces one enemy's physical/elemental defense. Attempts to bind the target's arms/head. Has an 80% speed modifier at all levels.

Mediocre debuffs. While the base bind chance on each of them is actually decently high, Fafnir has really terrible LUC, so good luck getting them to actually stick.

Requirements: Force Mastery level 3
Body parts used: None

Cures the user of binds (and ailments from level 5 on). Restores Force if any disables were purged--this amount is static, and is not modified by the number of disables removed. Has an 80% speed modifier at all levels.

One of the better skills in the Force Mastery tree. Fafnir being able to cure himself of binds and ailments is already useful enough, and the Force restore is just icing on the cake. It doesn't take a lot of skill points to max out, either.

Force Charge
Requirements: Absorb level 5
Body parts used: Head

Until the end of the next turn, increases the damage the user deals and the amount of Force they gain.

I'm normally down on charge skills (for good reason), but Force Charge has two things about it that make it less terrible. One, it's an option if you need Force very quickly and don't have Axcelas or a Sovereign on hand. Two, the damage boost lasting until the end of the turn means it works with Accelerate.

Force Shield
Requirements: Force Mastery level 5
Body parts used: Head

Only usable while the user is in the Force Boost state. Extends the Force Boost duration by 1, and reduces all damage to the user for one turn. Costs 14 TP at all levels.

Force Shield is a really strange skill. I guess if you really want to turn Fafnir into a tank in combination with Scapegoat it could be useful, but otherwise...

Force Energy
Requirements Force Shield level 5

When the user is in the Force Boost state, restores a static amount of TP plus a percentage of their max TP at the end of a turn.

Force Energy is a nice way to mitigate the fact that Fafnir has an absurdly terrible TP pool. Not a lot else to say about it.

Force Reset
Requirements: Force Mastery level 10
Body parts used: Head

Only usable while the user is in the Force Boost state. Ends the Force Boost, and restores Force to the user.

Force Reset is a way to increase the amount of uptime on Transform. Just use it on the last turn of Transform, and bam, you already have quite a lot of Force back. The standard way to use it is, essentially:

First two turns -> Extend -> Accelerate -> Accelerate turn -> Force Reset

Limit Break
Requirements: Force Reset level 5

In battle, the user's Force gauge can go beyond 100. After the end of the battle, the user's max Force (and their current Force if it was above 100 at the end of the battle) is set back to 100.

Limit Break's primary use is that you can combine it with Axcelas and other Force-restoring skills to, at level 20, enable Fafnir to Transform once, use up the duration, and then immediately Transform again. It's not something you'll really be able to take advantage of until the postgame, really, but it's still, nevertheless, fun to just immediately use Transform after it ends.

Weapon Free
Requirements: Phys ATK Up level 3, Elem ATK Up level 3

Allows the use of any attack skill, even if the user doesn't have the correct weapon equipped. However, from levels 1-19, any skill the user doesn't have the right weapon for will have its damage reduced.

Weapon Free's primary use is, at level 20, allowing Fafnir to equip staves, which give TEC bonuses, without suffering a penalty to the rest of his damage. Other than that, meh.

Force Boost

Increases the user's damage by 50% and maximum HP by 100%--heals the user up to their new maximum, as well. Reduces the user's speed by 50%. Enables the use of Fire/Ice/Thunder Wave, Blade Recoil, Meteor Smash, Power Cell, Extend, Self-Regenerate, and Accelerate.

And now, we finally reach the big draw of the Fafnir class, and the reason it is so supremely powerful once Fafnir has a lot of skill points available. Transform's passive bonuses (aside from the speed penalty) are already nice, but the skills it unlocks...hoo boy.

Fire/Ice/Thunder Wave
Depends on: Flame/Freeze/Shock Sabre
Body parts used: Head

Deals 10 instances of ranged TEC-based Fire/Ice/Volt damage to random enemies. Can hit the same target multiple times. Has a 70% speed modifier and 150 base accuracy at all levels.

Transform's essentially basic skills, which already deal a fuckton of damage on their own, and reach "jesus christ" levels when the Transform bonus is factored in. If you factor in an enemy having 125% resistance to an element, too, a level 20 Wave would deal 1575% TEC damage, and a 150% resistance would mean 1890%.

Blade Recoil
Depends on: Delayed Chase
Body parts used: Arms

Deals melee STR-based Cut damage to one enemy. If the user used an elemental attack on the last turn, also adds a ranged TEC-based follow-up attack of that same element. The follow-up attack doesn't check for accuracy, and will always hit.

This is why I said you should keep Delayed Chase leveled up, even after its damage gets outpaced. It even deals more total damage than the Waves!

Meteor Smash
Given: After defeating Chimaera
Body parts used: Arms

Usable once per Transform. Deals melee STR-based Bash damage to one enemy. Damage scales linearly from 350% to 795% based on user level. Costs 3 TP, has an 80% speed modifier, and 200 base accuracy.

Meteor Smash is useful before Fafnir gets enough skill points to really be effective, but after that, it's kind of just...there.

Power Cell
Given: After defeating Basilisk

Once per Transform, when the user takes mortal damage, they will survive at 1 HP.

A guaranteed Aegis/Deadly Resolve effect. Sure, why not?

Given: After defeating Flame Demon
Body parts used: Head

Usable once per Transform. Resets Transform's duration to 3 turns. Costs 5 TP.

Extend allows you to get more from the Force you spent to enable Transform and it is, by that virtue, good.

Given: After defeating Arachne

Restores 20% of the user's max HP at the end of each turn during Transform.

A neat passive. Kind of useless since Fafnir already has a metric ton of HP during Transform, but oh well.

Given: After defeating Scylla
Body parts used: Head

Usable once per Transform. On the next turn, allows the user to perform three separate actions. These three actions will go first in the turn order. Costs 15 TP.

One of the biggest, if not THE biggest, reasons that Fafnir is supremely broken, for reasons I really shouldn't have to state.

Ignition Ray/Akashic Nova
Force Break
Body parts used: Head

Deals ranged TEC-based Fire+Ice+Volt damage to one enemy/all enemies. Damage scales linearly from 1000% to 2100% based on user level. Has a 50% speed modifier. Ignition Ray is changed to Akashic Nova at the start of the Demi-Fafnir fight.

Even a unique damage type and pretty big nuke damage can't save Fafnir's Force Breaks from the fact that they're really boring compared to the rest of Transform's toolkit, and there's also the fact that, oh yeah, they lock Fafnir out of Transform for the rest of the battle. Best used to either get really annoying elemental conditionals (ie. get a kill with Fire damage on an enemy that has 0% Fire resistance), or as finishers (when you're positively sure they'll kill something).