It’s hard not to feel bad for the Ronin class of Etrian Odyssey Nexus. Whilst it has some excellent damage capabilities, the nature of this ‘celebration’ game means that it’s often overshadowed by the remainder of the cast, after all who doesn’t want the sheer madness that is the Imperial or the fan favourite Highlander in their front row, never mind the competition from the back row by the likes of the Gunner. On balance, it’s fair to say that physical damage dealers aren’t exactly thin on the ground here, but don’t go sleeping on the Ronin just yet – the class itself is a well balanced mix of Physical and Elemental damage that manages to cram in some excellent passive benefits through it’s stances. If you have taken the plunge, and indeed managed to clear the majority of Nexus with it, then you’re probably here to answer a very specific question: With a class such as the Ronin, which operates by using some very specific, self contained stance skills, which Subclasses should be considered that will improve it?
With Nexus having been around for quite a while, it’s safe to say that most Subclass choices are pretty well defined in the community. Taking the Ronin as an example, you’re mainly going to want to increase their physical damage as much as possible, so most tend to go for the other two on our list thanks to their excellent passives and skills that synergise. If you’re looking for a quick fire win then it’s probably best to skip this particular entry. However if you’re looking for something a little different, a little more interesting for your Ronin, then we present the Pugilist, or the ‘forgotten’ physical damage dealer. In Nexus the focus of this class has shifted somewhat, veering closer to the ‘Binder’ type, but that doesn’t mean that they’re completely null and void in damage terms.
The real benefit here for the Ronin are the passives, however in this case we’re not really talking about the usual stat increasing type, rather the passives that have a tangible battle influence. To start with, the Novice tree of the Pugilist is rather boring; HP Up is nice and Adrenaline, which restores TP whenever a Bind, Ailment or Stun is inflicted by the user, can be of some use, albeit limited thanks to the Ronin’s low TP costs. Things start to warm up in the Veteran tree thanks to Fighting Spirit, which increases ATK whenever you take damage, and Breather is also available to cleanse the Ronin of Binds/Ailments whilst also increasing ATK. Status ATK Up is another recommendation here, though this does depend on the style of play you’re going with, but the real star of the show has to be Raging Billows in the Master tree – this skill increases your damage based on the Binds/Ailments that are active on the target, essentially levelling up your damage further by simply doing what comes naturally.
- Excellent, tangible passives all round.
- HP Up and Status ATK Up are basic but useful.
- Fighting Spirit and Breather are fantastic ways to increase the damage a Ronin will do.
- Raging Billows can help the Ronin’s damage to scale very highly by increasing the amount done on targets with Binds or Ailments active, something that will be occurring consistently in the late game.
Boy oh boy, what else is there to say about this powerhouse class? We’ve featured this particular choice in various Nexus articles here, including one that details the very best classes available in the game, and we fully expect it to continue appearing as we detail optimal Subclass choices. Our previous entry detailed some different but useful passives that help the Ronin, but in reality we must bow down to the Highlander in this regard, because it’s not hyperbole to say that this class features the very best passives the game has to offer. Through a combination of stat, damage and health restoration increases, it’s probably capable of improving the remaining 18 classes in positive ways, regardless of their chosen role or abilities. Being physical in nature, the Ronin can make use of almost all of these passive skills, making the combination very strong in the late game.
In the Novice section Bloody Veil will increase the Ronin’s all DEF for the turn in which it took damage, and this combined with HP Up will increase survivability. However Turning Tide is our favourite here, since it restores HP to the party whenever the user slays a target, which is rather easy to plan around with the Ronin thanks to it’s heavy single target damage. In the Veteran tree you’ll get a great deal of usage out of Bloody Offense if you have the healing to cover it, and the combination of Phys DEF Up and Bloodlust will regularly assist in damage and minimise the amount taken. All of this is capped off in the Master tree by the usage of Black Sabbath, a STR based skill that attacks the entire enemy party whilst healing yours! If that wasn’t enough, it even features the flat damage increase of a Phys ATK Up passive!
- Probably the best selection of passives available for the Ronin.
- Turning Tide can be used to great effect thanks to the Ronin’s single target skills, since it heals the party whenever an enemy is slain by them.
- HP Up, Phys DEF Up and Phys ATK Up available.
- Black Sabbath is an incredible, STR based skill that heals your entire team whilst attacking all of the opponents (Ronin has the highest STR in the game).
From one class that frequents our articles to one that really doesn’t, the Landsknecht. The first Etrian game found them to be an all out attacking class, but as the series has evolved they have taken up their position as a balanced physical offense unit. This is reflected well in their Nexus skill set, which not only seeks to buff their defences, but also offers the ability to completely forgo these to deal large amounts of damage. They’re also the traditional ‘Linker’ class, which indicates access to a series of skills that effectively allow a free follow up attack, should others in the team attack the same target as the initial skill. The potential for the class is huge then, but we’ll admit to being a little… Underwhelmed by the class here in Etrian Odyssey Nexus. It’s not bad by any means, but the game is filled to the brim with classes capable of so much more, to the point where they tend to shrink into the background. In some areas however, the class is still a high performer, and we’re particularly fond of it’s additions to a base unit by way of Subclass.
This works particularly well with the Ronin, thanks in no small part to the Proficiency skill, located in the Novice section of the Landsknecht tree. This skill will increase the ATK and Hit rating of those attacking the same enemy that this unit did – this works particularly well with the Ronin thanks to their quick act speed. Building upon this is the Initiative skill, which boosts the user’s damage and accuracy when they attack before the opponent, something a quick class like the Ronin will be doing often. These two combine to make the main class more powerful than usual, and considered alongside some basic passive buffs like Phys DEF Up and Status DEF Up, we’d consider this Subclass option to be pretty successful, however delving into the Master section of the Landsknecht skills finds Single Devotion, which further boosts damage if a single type of damage is associated with it! Everything but the elemental attacks will count towards this, and this all adds up to make the damage output of the Ronin quite remarkable.
- Proficiency will increase the damage done by the whole party.
- Initiative will passively boost the Ronin’s damage, and this is further amplified by Single Devotion.
- Defensive passives Phys DEF Up and Status DEF Up are useful additions.
- This adds up to a more offensive option than that of the Highlander, which lends itself more to a party supporting role.
- Pick this option if you simply want to buff your Ronin’s physical damage as much as possible.
Categories: Etrian Odyssey Nexus