The resident lumpen loudmouth Reyn is next in our build articles for Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition. It would be wrong to call him the second character to join the team, after all he’s pretty much glued to Shulk’s hip throughout, but in essence he is the first alternative party member available to you. As you might imagine, given his muscular stature and the shield he swings around, his position in the party is that of a Tank – designed to stand in front of your opponents face and draw their aggro. That being said, and thanks to Xenoblade having tremendous customisation options, there are plenty of ways to build your Reyn, moulding and shaping him to meet the current team requirements.
Oh, and thanks to non-Shulk party members having more arts than the palette can take, we’ve gone into even more detail about the arts that should be taken with each build – enjoy!
1. Traditional Tank Reyn
Our first build is probably the most common type that players will settle into, especially those familiar with MMORPG games. This build is all about making Reyn a powerful meat shield, achieved by beefing up his defences as much as possible whilst ensuring he has enough utility to be useful in almost all situations. Here we mainly build up his physical defence through the use of Muscle Up gems and ensure that he will be adequately healed through the use of a Recovery Up gem. Given that he will be soaking up damage rather than avoiding it, having a Spike gem is also very useful.
Overall it’s a very easy build and one that will feel familiar to players transferring from other games. Reyn will likely be CPU controlled for these players, so just keep loading him up with defensive gems and he’ll do you proud. You can take control of him in this regard, however the arts detailed below are more designed to put him on an autopilot of sorts, whilst you take care of the more complex roles.
With pretty much every Reyn build we like to bring Last Stand – you never know when a massive hit might land and it pays to be prepared. Other than this, Reyn retains his ability to Topple and Daze here, mainly because this is the kind of build we assume players will settle into in the default party of Shulk, Reyn and a healer of sorts. It’s worth bringing a few red physical arts to do damage and draw aggro, something that the Rage art works well with, and Magnum Charge will ensure these do enough damage to keep the enemies facing your meat shield. We would consider switching Aura Burst in at times in place of Last Stand, but make sure you have some spot healing on hand just in case Reyn takes big hits.
- Designed to absorb damage rather than avoid it.
- Do your best to reduce the aggro that other party members generate – this build will not generate huge amounts, but should be enough to keep the enemies pinned to Reyn as much as possible.
- Ensure Reyn is wearing high defence pieces of armour where possible – this is not a dodge based build, rather one that relies upon soaking up the damage, doing some back through Spike and making it easy to heal.
- Recovery Up is key here, and if you choose to stack more of these gems you can reduce the amount of healing needed in the party build.
- As noted in the arts, this Reyn build will take care of the Topple and Daze, so ensure other members bring Break options.
2. Super Damage Reyn
Xenoblade Chronicles is not a difficult game, not by a long shot, but in this regard it does have some peaks and troughs. Numerous players will attest to the slight jump that occurs during the Ether Mines section, for example, but should a player be looking to take on everything the game has to offer – side quests included – then the vast majority will be rather simple. That being the case, you may want to consider a full damage build for every member of your team, Reyn included, to assist in chopping through battles and quests in the field.
This build then, is wilfully simple. Bring your best damage arts, load Reyn up with a ton of Strength gems and go to town on the opponents. It may not be necessary to take Recover Up gem here, but in our experience the Reyn can start to take a bit too much damage, especially against elite targets. Double Attack gems can also be switched out should you wish, but we find that this does great damage and if anything, helps aggro generation.
As you might imagine, damaging arts are prioritised here. Lariat and War Swing are ideal for taking down groups of enemies in super quick time, especially with Magnum Charge powering them up. The combination of Berserker and Aura Burst will keep Reyn fairly safe whilst prioritising huge damage. The sheer numbers that you’ll see Reyn push out during a long combo is incredible, especially if you can end with a Max Sword Drive or Lariat.
- Surprisingly large amount of damage for a tank, though more burst than sustained DPS.
- Ensure that others in the party can complete the Break, Topple and Daze combinations for tougher mobs. In this regard it will pair well with Shulk or a damage dealing Dunban.
- This build will require more healing than usual, so we would recommend that you bring Sharla or a well levelled Riki – Melia may struggle to keep the team going. If you want to use Melia, use her in the lead position to ensure healing control, and maybe switch in another Recovery Up gem.
- Bring a member with defence down to maximise Reyn’s damage potential.
3. Optimised Tank Reyn
Despite our previous comment regarding difficulty levels, there will certainly come a point during the late game in which Reyn starts to struggle. His ability to absorb damage is second to none, but at times the act of absorbing just doesn’t quite cut the mustard. An example of such a time would be during the Sword Valley run, in which you’re likely to want to take down some massive Mechon, but may find that both of the above Reyn builds render your team a little vulnerable. You could switch over to Mr dodge tank himself – Dunban – but what if you love your meat shield and want to make him work?
This build then, optimises Reyn’s build in the best ways possible to reduce all types of damage. By including a significant amount of Agility gems, each point of which adds a point of evasion, his ability to deal with physical damage is increased significantly. Similarly, his ether defence is buffed by the inclusion of at least two Ether Def Up gems, of which you’ll want to get to the 100 cap if possible. All of this is rounded out by the Debuff Resist gem, which is nigh on broken with it’s 75% resistance, and it all adds up to a Reyn that’s almost invincible in the late game.
This is our favourite combination of arts for Reyn. It combines the ability to put out high amounts of damage, debuff application through Dive Sobat, Bone Upper and Aura Burst, and some excellent tanking utility with Last Stand and Rage. Given that your gem allocation is pushed towards Agility and Ether Defence, Reyn is likely to take less damage and can spend more time dishing it out. Again, this build can deal some tremendous amounts of damage, especially to groups of opponents.
- Fantastic tanking build, by far our favourite since it minimises all damage types through dodge and ether defence.
- Again, bring others with Topple and Daze options. These can be switched into the build in place of Dive Sobat and Bone Upper if necessary.
- Less healing will be required here compared to the other two builds. In this regard Melia or an evenly levelled Riki will suffice.
- The build still does a good deal of damage, though it’s less focused on single targets without Sword Drive.
- This kind of build, with switching of Topple combo arts, can see Reyn through the entire game, assuming you keep upgrading gems and arts. Any skills that can be learnt from others regarding weight reduction and agility increases will help Reyn to dodge physical attacks even more.
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