Part 4: Chapter 57 (Part 2)Returning Characters
Rumia's gotten some solid buffs in FMW4. She got a new finisher in Midnight Bird, plus a bunch of her attacks got changed to be Ranged, which is by far her better stat. All things considered, she's definitely one of the better 2.0s out there.
For convenience's sake, I'm just gunna talk about the Final Dyninemic Special (name pending) here. For all 4 members, it is by far their strongest attack (just remember that it scales based on the average of all their weapon upgrades, so you can't skimp). It's 2-4 range (so it can't benefit from Shotgunning sadly), and it's technically kinda cheap at 35 MP (except it's more like 140 MP, spread across 4 units). All 4 members have a PS that improves the damage by 200, and if she hits 140 Power, then that +200 gets applied to all other members' copy of the attack too - so if they're all at 140 Power, they all have +800 to the attack.
If you're curious, assuming you buy 10 weapon upgrades for all 4, and have them all equip the PS, the attack hits 5700 base power. For reference, at the same upgrade level, Marisa's Final Spark hits 5300, and it can get even higher with WP investments. Considering you can use the attack 4 times a turn, it makes the 4 of them kinda monstrously powerful, if you go whole-hog on the gimmick.
Rumia also has a PS that makes it Night terrain around her, including from the backrow, in case you want to throw even more Cost into the Remilia bin.
The littlest fairy who could. Her damage is ok, she's reasonably evasive, and she has Grit which I'm a big fan of on Reals. As with most 2.0s you'll always feel like there's better units out there (aside from Parsee) but she's efficient for her cost.
One silly thing I've thought about but never done is tried using her as a tank. She has a PS called Ice Power L3, which improves her Ice Barrier, which normally negates non-laser damage below 1800, to instead reduce damage by 2000 - even with her low armor, that's kind of a lot, and she's even got 10% HP Regen. That sounds pretty stupid though, so I doubt I'd ever bother.
The orange cat is on the upper end of 2.0s. High Mobility, S on Ground (though watch out for the B in Air), and a 33% Bunshin make her quite evasive, and if Ran is anywhere close by she gets +20% Accuracy and 10% MP Regen. All pretty damn solid, and her combo with Ran is both her strongest attack, and very economical with 5 ammo. Her main downside is low damage outside of said combo.
She's not totally reliant on Ran either. You can either equip Enhanced Shikigami to improve her Accuracy/MP Regen buffs from Ran, or equip Enhanced Bakeneko for a 50% Bunshin and pumping her strongest non-combo attack by 300. They're both really solid options.
The Prismriver Sisters
The BBCode for that title is monstrous.
As you'd expect from The Most Expensive Unit in the Game, the Prismrivers are quite strong. They're basically the perfect all-rounder: the can dodge, they can tank, they can DPS, and they can support. The Lack of Partner Attacks and FPM blowouts hurts, but they can get by. A common tactic is to have everyone form up around Merlin at the start of a chapter, blow her Power-boosting MAP, then combine and take your turn as normal. You can do similar decombine/recombine shenanigans with Lyrica's Acc/Evade MAP. I'd still give the edge spirits-wise to the 3 Fairies (Luna is a disgusting abomination) but they're no slouches, and you can completely blow Merlin and Lyrica's PP on Extend/SP Ups for even more support casting.
PS-wise they each have a PS that boosts some stats by 20. Technically Merlin's also lowers some stats, but it doesn't matter because Synchronize gives the combined unit the best stats among the 3, so they are effectively gaining +20 to all stats, and I don't know why you'd use anything else.
It still blows my mind how many remixes of Phantom Ensemble there are in this game.
In a vaccuum Ran's probably the most mediocre of the 3.0s, being very much a jack-of-all-trades, master of none. Given the right circumstances though, she can be quite the monster. She has the same Shikigami ability as Chen, albeit she gets boosts from Yukari, and she has a 25% Bunshin.
The main thing to talk about is her PS White-Face Gold-Fur, which improves the effects of Guard, Predict, Belief, and Diligence by 50%. Maxed out, at 130 Power, she'll be rocking -30% Damage Taken, +52 Hit/Evade, +37 Melee/Ranged, +22% Crit Rate, and a 42% Bunshin (which auto-dodges, if you forgot). That's pretty insane! OTOH that would cost 1410 PP, which is kind of a fuckload.
Yukari largely makes use of a bunch of gimmicks that aren't very good. As with most 3.5s she's not awful or anything, but she's not very cost-efficient for what she does. Her main use I guess using her unique Dream spirit to piggyback on better units for access to good support spirits. Btw, did you notice that the name of this game is also "Dream"? Yeah, that might be relevant. Maybe.
Her PSes are mostly gimmicky bullshit, like swapping who's in front/behind or focused/unfocused for your entire team. She can teleport people into the boat which I guess is a decent emergency button, and it's not like you're bringing her as anything but a support unit anyway.
At least her Player theme is a neat crossmix of Night Falls and Necrofantasia. That's cool.
Out of the Dumbass 4, Wriggle's probably the weakest. She can't put out as much damage as Rumia or Cirno, and she doesn't have their reliability either. You'd mainly bring her along to fulfill the gimmick. At least she still has The Kick.
You can't hate on Birdsara. She sings at you and makes you better. She's got a pretty good Partner Attack. She can Accel. If you've got everyone you want in a party, and have 2.0 left over, Mystia is a good choice. If you're doing the Team 9 gimmick you're bringing her anyway, and she'll contribute well.
Amusingly she has a super cheap Valor at only 35 SP. Ostensibly that's cuz you'd mainly use it for her songs (which do get buffed by it, btw) but it lets her get good damage out of the Nineball Special too.
You're using 2.0 Cost to get 15% more money from some enemies. Enjoy.
Reisen Udongein Inaba
I've never had the highest opinion of long-range sniper units. They kinda need to bring something else to the table for me: big damage, support spirits, etc. Reisen doesn't. She's a Real who is somewhere between below average to average at everything except out-ranging enemies. If you can reliably avoid counters then her shaky Mobility and low HP might not matter, but it's not like you're doing big damage, and that's basically all she contributes.
In FMW4 she has a 25% Bunshin and a PS that boosts it to 45%, because Sakuya isn't allowed to have her own niche.
fake edit: I was reminded that Reisen gets a PS at level 56 that boosts her damage by 20% when she uses Snipe, which only costs 15 SP for her. I don't think it completely solves her problem, but it at least makes her useable as a sniper unit.
I know I just got done bashing snipers, but unlike the useless rabbit, Eirin actually does bring other things to the table. She can restore HP and MP, and she can arguably do both better than Dai or Koa thanks to her PS Lunar Medicine, which improves those abilities to restore to the max. She also has the Renew spirit to fully restore a unit's MP and Ammo from anywhere on the map, letting her support even more.
when she's done all that, she can still kinda contribute with long-range attacks, and her damage is pretty ok. I put a lot more faith in "taking a hit and surviving" than actually dodging versus late-game bosses, so her ok Armor and good HP are nice, although the really tough bosses might oneshot her regardless. Bringing a 3.5 unit primarily for support always seems a bit dodgy to me, but Eirin's certainly very convenient.
I'm never sure how to think about Kaguya. Calling a unit with 900 Armor a tank seems weird, but Salamander Shield reducing all damage she takes by 1200 goes a long way. Amusingly it makes the Wall spirit reduce her damage taken by far more than 50%, thanks to the damage reduction being applied at the end. If you don't need her SP for that, she can dump Rouses or Gains on other people, which is nice. Like all the Immortals she has 20% HP Regen, lending her even more sustained survivability. Her damage is pretty good too, and she can theoretically benefit from Shotgunning (but there are better choices for that).
Actually, her PSes are pretty cool too. She has one for each of the 5 Impossible Requests. One improves her Salamander Shield by 300, one improves her damage by 200, and the other 3 are all support abilities with one use each: she can give your entire team 3000 HP, 70 MP, or Grit. All really good choices, actually! I don't normally mention personalities, but her's (we jokingly call it "A Big Deal") is a bit special. Only she and Yuyuko have it, and they gain 2 Power everytime an enemy is killed, instead of just 1. That means they hit max Power hella fast.
Listing it all out like that, Kaguya sounds really good, so maybe my coolness on her is just because I've never given her a fair shake.
Mokou punches things so hard that both they, and she, blow right the hell up. She's a bit less stable than some of the other 3.0s, but she performs no less well, in my experience. For SRW fans, you can think of her a bit like Chirico Cuvie, what with her native Instinct L9 and Prevail L9 incentivizing her to dance at low HP. Her damage is crazy high, and you can give up her HP Regen (which just messes up her low HP dance anyway) for even more damage with her PS To the Death.
She has a tragic lack of defensive spirits outside of Focus, but her Resurrection ability is kind of like 2 "free" hits per chapter. hwen she dies she comes back with bonus stats, and she comes back with low HP to activate Instinct/Prevail too. Truly a phoenix rising from the ashes.
Y'know, if a phoenix punched things so hard that its arm exploded.
Aki the first. You put her in front of Minoriko, equip both with their friendship skills, and watch as she hyper-efficiently handle most situations with enough SP left over to throw Attunes at people.
For reference, you can hit Friendship Level 8 with them, which grants them +30% Accuracy/Evasion, 13% Damage dealt/taken, and 18% Crit. You can wade them into a giant crowd of enemies, and with their ridiculously huge ammo counts, they'll come out the other side without nary a scratch and ready for more. The power of friendship is amazing.
Aki the second. She boosts Shizuha's stats, Support Defends for her, and then sometimes she can restore people's MP or toss a Bless on people for double cash. The Double Inazuma Kick is a good attack for damage, too. Multipurpose and efficient, about as much as you can ask for in a 2.0.
I know I really shouldn't, but I can't help but compare some of these 2.0s to the SA crew. Seriously, what the hell.
Hina's, uh, fine, I guess. She can move fast, and can either support the team with some gimmicky debuff PSes, or turn her movement into damage with Centrifugal Force. Her gimmicks are actually pretty neat, and she can contribute decently well if you feel like bringing her.
I would literally rather have a generic kappa.
Momiji's solid. She's not like, amazing or anything, but if you ever find yourself needing a spare Support Defender, Momiji's a good choice. She's not as tanky as Meiling, but she has Shield Block to make up the difference somewhat. She's got some good ammo-based attacks, including her new Tengu Squad attack. She has a cool PS called Clairvoyance, which improves all of her weapon ranges by 1, and also all of her partner's ranges. That's a really good ability, and it makes her even more solid as a backrow defender.
Also, her finisher theme is based on the OP of Gun X Sword, which is one of my favorite anime of all time. So, bonus points for that.
Ayayaya, this crow is not great. Like many units from the first two games, she's not unusable or anything, but I'd say she's seriously undertuned. Much like Marisa she's a Real without Focus, but she doesn't have much else to make up for that. She can move fast, or throw Accels on other people, and tbf FMW4 does have a lot of timed missions, but... meh. Double Spoiler helps her, at least.
Aya with Focus. Hatate's other gimmick is having a stupidly high Focused Movement of 5. I guess the idea is to have Hatate focused and Focused (heh) in front, while Aya casts Accel to zoom around with 8 Focused Move? It's a cute trick, at least. They have Double Spoiler, so you're incentivized to keep them paired up, and for as much as I prefer a Real/Super team, it works out ok for them.
Man, why doesn't Kanako have an S in Air by default? Such bullshit. Anyway, Kanako's another sniper type unit. She can put out good damage, and she's roughly as tanky as Meiling at base, with a 1000 damage reduction barrier on top. Realistically though, you're only bringing her for the Moriya Katamari. (Or if she's your waifu, I guess). The fact that you can buy Hit & Away for her could almost make her a good standalone unit, I suppose.
Fun fact, Kanako gets different bonuses from Sanae's Faith gauge. As the percentage rises, her bonuses skew more towards Armor and Range, which are her specialties. At max I think Mountain of Faith is a 4-10 range attack. Pretty cool!
Suwako received a ridiculous number of buffs in the v1.1 patch. She has a blistering 8 movement, up from 7. She has an S on Ground to go with her S in Water. She's more evasive than Reimu. One major problem she used to have was that her weakest attack was also her only post-move one, but now Long Arm Long Leg (which is 2-5 range) can be used post-move too. I think all her weapons got damage buffed a bit too?
On top of all that, she has two new abilities. One just letsn her dive underground like the Kurogane in SRW OG, preventing her from attacking or being attacked. It's not super useful, but it is cute. Native God on the other hand reduces all damage she takes by half when she's on terrain she has an S in. Note that that includes Air, if you give her the Shimenewa. While 900 Armor might not feel like a lot, it works out pretty well when you've got a permanent Wall on for free. She already had a 1500 damage reduction barrier against Lasers, so I bet if she was underwater, she could take Master Sparks on the chin all day.
It's not like she was particularly bad before, either. It's just, instead of "really good if you use the Moriya Katamari", now she's "actually just really fucking good". She's not broken or OP or anything, and I wouldn't even put her in the top 5, but when I look at her, I can't help but think that that is what a 3.5 should look like.
-Danger Sense L2: Allows Support Attacking and Support Defending for units within 3 spaces.
-Personal Generator: Light Dragon's Sigh costs 30 MP instead of 40, and it's range improves by 1.
-Veils Like Water: For one turn, regardless of the enemy's hit rate or if she is focused or unfocused, Iku will always graze.
Spirit List: Scan, Strike, Accel, Alert, Adapt, Fury
Iku, like every unit that joins in FMW4, is good. Danger Sense alone makes her almost an auto-pick for me, for how useful it is. She's not Meiling-tier, but she can definitely take a few hits. You'll probably wanna invest in MP Save too, since she'll be running dry on MP fast with how much S.Attacking she does. Her finishers do very respectable damage too, so she's always contributing.
Alternatively you can build her for Veils Like Water. Grazing L2 reduces all graze damage you take by 3/4, and that does work for that PS. It's basically like 2 uses of Super Wall, which is pretty damn cool. Back in the demo it used to be permanently active rather than use-limited, but I guess Sanbondo realized that a unit taking 25% damage from everything, always, forever, was maybe a little bit busted.
Also, to explain the joke with her last attack...
to Touhou fans: it's a reference to the signature attack of Gurren Lagann, the Giga Drill Break.
to SRW fans: it combines this attack (there's actually a regular attack that fits it better, but no one records those seperately) and this attack.
If you were a fan of both like me, then you've been waiting for this joke for 7 years.
New Attacks (Chapter 57 units)
Alright, voting time again. As before, we each get ONE (1) pick, and if we need more I'll open the floor to repeats. Marisa is forced as usual, and Iku is forced again, but by the game this time, rather than me.
You've got 47 Cost to work with. Have fun.