Ark Overview

Discussion in 'Unit Reviews' started by Eleiryn, Sep 11, 2015.

  1. Eleiryn

    Eleiryn QUACK QUACK BOOM Administrator

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    So Ark is a pretty unique unit - currently offering utility otherwise unavailable on Global, arguably superior to his most direct counterpart (Charlize) in the GL meta, but with a bit of a bumpy ride upcoming when Lucius hits. Still, I think his strengths are a little understated, so let's get this going.

    Brave Frontier Unit 997
    "Supreme Husbandbro" Ark
    Imped Stats: 7740HP 2940ATK 2615DEF 2528REC
    Hits: 40DC
    LS: 70% Spark BC+ (ALL) / 75% Spark DMG+ (ALL) / 35% HP 35% ATK 35% DEF 35% REC (ALL)
    BB: 22 hits/22DC, 300% AOE, normal hits +2 (26 cost)
    SBB: 32 hits/32DC, 250-750% AOE depending on HP, 140% attack/3 turns (50 cost)
    UBB: 26 hits/26DC, 1200% AOE, adds all elements, adds +500% BB mod
    ES: 25% Chance Heal 20% DMG when ATKed (SELF) / 50% Chance 2-3BC Fill when ATKed (SELF)

    Overview: I don't usually talk about stats since they're pretty much always workable these days, but it's worth noting that Ark is I believe the first trial unit to have perfectly workable imp caps and final imped stats, letting him stand strong along normal 40 cost RS units, though a little less crazy than the 42 cost bullshit. Nearly 3k attack is pretty good for his obvious role (damage) and plays very well into his BB/SBB combo as well, more on that later. Speaking of his BB/SBB combo, I'll get into the hard math a little later, but for now let's just say that that combo can take your units up to 3000-6000% attack multiplier on their basic attacks depending on how hard you optimize it and how much you sacrifice for safety in a trial scenario, and uh, last time I checked, it was pretty hard to get SBBs up that high. Like... at all. SBBs don't go anywhere the fuck near that high is what I'm saying, getting them above 2000% is enough of a task, 3k is unpossible, and Ark can give more than that to everyone in your entire team. That's pretty nice for switching from AOE damage to single target to burst down specific dudes in a trial (ex. Ark before his butt buddies in his trial, Tesla before Eriole in his trial, exploding Lucius's hitcount-related shield, nuking specific raid boss body parts, etc).

    Even without the UBB shenanigans that the last section referenced, Ark's +2 hitcount and attack buff and a decent conversion buff with Zenia lead (again, no UBB) still let you pull a pretty solid (depends wildly on spheres and ESes) 1500-2800% multiplier on basic attacks. Why does it vary so much? Well, long story, will get into the math later, but tl;dr version is that hit count ESes/spheres and high attack boost spheres have their effectiveness multiplied dramatically with these sorts of strategies - 1500% is what everyone can do with literally no focus on damage sphere/ESes at all, 2800 is what a well tuned Vesti or Zenia can pull off, units will generally fall somewhere in between. Compare this to a SBB in that scenario which will generally be hitting for somewhere around 1070-1100% ish, and not only are you hitting harder, but more importantly you're hitting THE BODY PART YOU WANT TO DIE, so you don't have to rely entirely on Hadaron or perfect element setups or Zenia/Ultor/Edea BB to murder them, and that's all without sacrificing anything from your team!

    So - yeah. Ark is pretty fuckin useful.

    Mechanics on BB
    • Ark BB clones basic attacks at full damage
    • The boost is additive, not multiplicative (Ark BB + Zenia UBB + Zenia LS = 6 total sets of attacks, not 2x2x2=8 attacks.
    • The attacks don't spark with themselves (iirc 1 frame offset)

    The Math(tm)
    Spoilered becuz wall of numbers
    Only registered members can view this content, click here to sign up and view it!

    Ok, so... what the fuck do you do with a ~4400-5000%ish multiplier on the basic attacks of most of your team using readily available spheres?

    Arena: 40DC, 3k attack, a fantastic arena AI, and an effectively guaranteed wipe on BB is a pretty bitchin' combo - while Atro can beat him in DC (48 vs 40), Ark is 100% usable in arena and will not drag your team down in the least. Yeah, you don't get to abuse the +hits shit much, but w/e he's still good.

    Raid: Gosh golly gee whizz, if only there was some kind of content where you might want to destroy specific boss body parts, body parts that have insane quantities of HP so insane damage multipliers are very useful, and you wanted to do it WITHOUT wasting space in your team on jackwads like Tazer and Oguro that have no really useful buffs/utility on your team? PREPARE YOUR ANGUS, ESTOREIT, 'CUZ WE ABOUT TO MAKE HAMBURGERS FROM YO TWO DOLLAR ASS but seriously Ark is ridiculously good in raids. He's a great sub in general, or for crit resistant stuff he's /arguably/ the best lead buddy to Zenia, possibly even over Tridon, on account of 35% allstats and a decent chunk of spark damage from his LS, though of course you'll still want Tridon sub cuz he's awesome. It IS worth noting that his SBB (and Sky Harbinger in general) varies a bit in value here depending on how hard boss whacks you since Elimo is generally not used here, but Krantz is a great healer as well, and Tridon shield often keeps people pretty safe.

    Trials: look I just spent like 700 trillion words in the math section explaining how bad Ark breaks trials even without using any fucking offensive spheres at all, but practically speaking this is generally a good strategy for bypassing HP checkpoint attacks or just burning down boss HP very quickly. With enough setup you can do crazy shit like killing every one of Zevalhua's forms in 1 turn or burning most/all of Ark third form's HP in one turn or assploding Xie'Jing or burning Lucius down past dangerous breakpoints, I'm sure you chucklefucks can think of SOMETHING to do with his massive burst in conjunction with Zenia

    Future Prospects: There are a few long-term concerns for ark. In the shorter term, Nadore/Nadeelah/whatever (the light valkyrie chick with BC on hit and 120% allstat buffs) offers a pretty comparable buff, so in JP that was a bit of a hit to Ark since you could get a decent attack buff for free pretty much even without him - he still kept his +hit cheesing identity, just no reason to use him as an attack buffer specifically when she did that and more. While global has better synergy with Libera so Nadore won't be quite as dominant, she'll still be very good/common, and between Michele, Deimos, and Ultor, it's not that hard to get an attack buff these days. Not to say Ark is by any means bad as an attack buffer - just not always necessarily the best choice.

    The real problem is probably Lucius in the murky future, sporting a 140% perma attack buff on his LS once he gets going. At that point, there's really just no reason to bring attack buffers for attack buffs at all, since Lucius lead is meta as fuck for raids. Again, Ark keeps his +2 hit bullshit and a nice hitcount SBB, he's still good, just won't be used as much outside of whenever you need the hits.

    His only direct competition lies in Charlize from the God Weapon Masters batch, who offers +1 hitcount and 35% BC/HC on BB and +1 hits/60% def->atk conversion buff on SBB; generally speaking Ark is better (much better LS, good atk buffs are harder to find in a trial situation than conversion buffs, better UBB as needed), but the real problem is once again Lucius - and Lucius sports both identical BC/HC drop buffs and a similar-strength conversion buff. In short, Lucius actually works ok with Ark (providing a powerful conversion atk buff and useful utility) while Charlize is completely obliterated by Lucius - which in turn means that Ark has stronger long-term prospects even despite his attack buff clash with Lucius, and considering that's only on Lucius LS anyways, that means that Lucius sub in trial (which you want to use anyways, honestly, huge HP/BC/HC and atk conversion buffs) has 0 clashes at all with Ark and only makes it even easier to hit those huge numbers.

    The Verdict: Ark is a blatant 10/10 unit, frankly probably bordering on 11/10 simply due to how hard he breaks a LOT of content, with a reasonably strong future and an effectively unmatched niche. Even when Shitstorm Lucius hits and weakens Ark's position as a lead, he'll still remain a dominant trial lead and an EXTREMELY strong sub that no one outside of Zenia can really match in terms of sheer contribution - and considering how well he synergizes with Zenia and Lucius subs... well, let's just say that GL is going to be seeing a LOT of Ark for a long time.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2015
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  2. OXStrident

    OXStrident Ruling Star

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    First. :p Anyways, good review. (y) We may have Tridon to compete with Ark as lead, but I feel Ark is generally the better lead given the fact that he has bc gen, damage, and of course stat boosts on ls. Then ofc, even as a sub I find him to be great. As of right now he's the only unit to give a +1 hit count buff on bb/sbb iirc, which is going to be useful as hell for both bc gen and damage in trials. Whether sub or lead I'm sure I'll use Ark in future hard dungeons.
     
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  3. Nightvayne283

    Nightvayne283 Ruling Star

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    Trial X3, here I come.

    Sent from a beautiful Duwang.
     
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  4. Martin541

    Martin541 Nomos

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    I tried using Zenia's UBB and Ark's BB in the newest GGC, and it did a lot less damage than I thought:confused:
    Am I doing wrong? I had Zenia and Ark leads, and Zenia had OCA and Fallacy. But all the attacks didn't wreck the guardians. Maybe I'm just too much of a noob:oops:
     
  5. shinryu

    shinryu Amateur

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    I know it's just my noob understanding as well, but it just seems weird to me still that normal attacking under the right circumstances is better than SBBs with Ark (and Zenia), at least vs 1 target.
     
  6. Yilun

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    I've been a bit confused with the whole normal hit count bonuses. So Zenia normally has 13 hits on her normal. With OCA equipped, she has +1 (normal hit count +100%). I'm gathering this means her normal hit count is doubled to 26 then, correct? Then Ark's BB adds normal hit count +200% so does that mean it's tripled? Aka, Zenia's now 26 hit count is further boosted to.... 78? Now if you trigger Zenia UBB on top of that, now that UBB's stack... it adds another +200% hit count so that boosts it to.... 234? This doesn't sound right so I'm obviously missing something here about how the normal hit count buff mechanics work...

    [Edit] - No, that can't be right. Maybe +200% on Ark's BB will simply mean Zenia 26 hits + 13 + 13 = 52, correct? And if you trigger Zenia's UBB, it adds another 200% so 52 + 13 + 13 = 78? In other words, normal damage will rival (surpass) that of SBB's because of sheer volume of hits.
     
  7. Eleiryn

    Eleiryn QUACK QUACK BOOM Administrator

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    It is, isn't it? Zenia adds a monstrous +750% mod to SBBs - and yet somehow that's less than +250% attack and +2 hitcount? It just doesn't really make sense intuitively at all, but the way BF math works it just... works that way.

    I'm not sure exactly what their HP totals were, but every bit helps; if possible you want element advantage, conversion attack buffs, atk ark buff + hit buff, damage spheres, crit chance buff, spark buff, etc. Same 'force multipliers' that you always want to use work here and are responsible for giving you damage. To use Ark trial specifically, Michele is a great option (Dark element, crit, atk buff so you don't have to use Ark SBB for it).

    Each +1 hit buff clones your base hits. +2 hits is the same thing as 3x base, +5 hits is the same as 6x base. So for Zenia, she goes from 13 hits per attack normally to 26 with just ES, 52 with ES+ Ark BB, 78 with Zenia UBB. The boost is additive not multiplicative.
     
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  8. Yilun

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    Thanks, I had corrected/edited my own post with the same realization. This all makes sense now. It's not that normals are suddenly doing more damage.... it's essentially optimizing your attack blob with as much attack buffs as possible from LS, BB/SBB buffs and spheres and then basically taking your normal hit count to crackhead levels and overwhelming your enemy with sheer volume of hits. Very, very interesting concept. I actually really dig the fact that there are different mechanisms available now like +1 hit counts to deliver damage in different ways (y)
     
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  9. OXStrident

    OXStrident Ruling Star

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    I agree. Idk about you guys but I absolutely love the whole normal hit meta shift. (y)
     
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  10. Eleiryn

    Eleiryn QUACK QUACK BOOM Administrator

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    Yup - sorry - should have explained that in first post, edited in the basics. The concept has been here for a while, Zenia UBB by itself already offered 2000-3000% damage basic attacks without too much optimization, but Ark adds both slot efficiency (atk buff + another hit buff in the same guy) and the +2 hits is MASSIVE for taking the strategy from "good" to "fucking retarded."

    And honestly, even without using Zenia UBB or attack spheres at all, Ark alone adds a pretty solid amount of single target damage in raids (again, depends on setup, but in the ~1500% range if set up decently) which is REALLY handy for killing boss body parts. So you don't have to go completely crazy with Sky Harbingers and +1 hit ESes to make it practically useful - just toss Ark into a Zenia led team, toss Malice+ on everyone, and still be able to bitch slap Balmedia's tail or Estoreit's wings for monstrous amounts of damage in a perfectly normal team.
     
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  11. Kiyoji21

    Kiyoji21 Ouranous

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    I'd love it if one of the next GE units gets an additional attack buff.

    Also, inb4tags.
     
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  12. Eleiryn

    Eleiryn QUACK QUACK BOOM Administrator

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    Please don't give them the idea. I'm not sure my body is ready for someone to have +3 hits +200% attack on a BB.
     
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  13. OXStrident

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    You know, I could actually really see Andaria with that on bb, and something like ares or bc on hit (a guy can dream) added to sbb. Dang it Kiyoji, now I'm dying to get her info lol. :confused:
     
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  14. Kiyoji21

    Kiyoji21 Ouranous

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    I am the conductor of the hype train. ALLL ABOAARRRDDDD!


    CHOO CHOO
     
  15. Yilun

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    I think alot of people may have never realized this simply because they shared the same mentality as I did - once I pop Zenia UBB, why the heck would I use normals when I can SBB spam? <---- I'm pretty sure most people never gave it a second thought and therefore, never even realized how much collective damage they would be doing if they actually tried using normals.

    I can see how this can make farming Raid body parts extremely useful. Take Balmedia's tail for example. If I take a squad like Zenia (lead) + Griff (friend) and then used Ark, Bestie, Krantz, and Tridon as subs, for example... both Zenia and Bestie have +1 on their ES naturally. Griff to buff water, then pop Zenia UBB and Ark BB and use basically 2.5 rounds of normals on his tail and I gather that it'd be pretty much dead at that point, right? :)
     
  16. Jaxtan

    Jaxtan

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    +1 hit count only count on normal hits?? or does count in bb/sbb of others??
     
  17. Nightvayne283

    Nightvayne283 Ruling Star

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    Normal attacks only.

    Sent from a beautiful Duwang.
     
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  18. Cypher00

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    Agreed, Zenia UBB also increases BB attack damage so usually one spams SBBs for 2nd turns and normal attacks on the 3rd. So one never naturally thinks just to normal attack. The extra normal hits system seems pretty profitable, well on paper. The meta demands we migrate, null status, survive certain thresholds, and hope RNG don't kill us. I'm curious on how people will try to play this out.
     
  19. Emanresu

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    Great review as always. I've recently been feeling a lot more love for Iris especially in crit resistant raids. The introduction of Ark into the mix means for me Iris might have just forced her way up a rank on my most used units. While she seemed a little niche and obviously gets hit hard from Griff I think she will be sticking very close to Ark in future and I think the mean boys and girls might just think again.
     
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  20. WartsaRF

    WartsaRF Hephaestus

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    Elly...
    Gumi add BC-per-turn on Aurellia out of nowhere...

    Sent from your own Device
     

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