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I recommend having one from each type in your party - a mage-type (Red), a warrior-type (blue) and a rogue-type (green). I would also be sure to have at least one healer and one spellcaster.

Healers (in order of effectiveness):

Spellcasters (in order of effectiveness):
Black Knight

As long as you have healing and spellcasting covered, I wouldn't worry too much about your party make-up, though. All of the base classes are effective in their own way, plus you get to make 4 different parties, which encourages experimentation. Furthermore, you can discover secret classes AND upgrade to elite classes (using elfstones) in chapter 5.

This is my tiered list of all the classes (including secret, elite and hero classes).THIS IS JUST MY OPINION and I have heard reports of other classes being used much more effectively that I did. After you play the game, let me know what you used and what you found to be effective. I'm interested to know!


Dual wield + Strike (x5 or double damage) is devastating. With two Ultrawhips (x2 attacks) with a x5 Strike, you can get 20 attacks per round for nearly 8000 damage. And this was with a Level 23 Daredevil in the final dungeon. Also, superfast AND has access to all the Ranger, Ninja, and Bandit skills and all the songs.

Hunter (Holdana)
Pummel at higher levels can do x4 or x5 attacks per round. Combine that with kickass hero-only equipment AND competant spells (like Thordain and Poison and healing and revive spells) AND that Hunters naturally have a 50% resistance to elemental attacks == WIN.

Has Pummel (see above) AND Chainmagic (x2 spellcast/round) AND an awesome spelllist AND crazy HP AND able to equip everything that a Black Knight can. Basically like a Hunter.


Magus (Zefiryn)
Has Magicombo (x2 spellcast/round) and Thordain. Plus can turn into a Weremage (x2 INT). Remember Terra from FFVI? This is basically the same thing. Instant Demon Death.

Casts powerful magic without needing MP.

Has Pummel and can equip awesome stuff and lots of HP.

Has Chainmagic and a good selection of powerful spells.


Has werewolf form (x2 ATK/AGL + regen), powerful weapons, good HP and insane STR. Equip the Blade of Arborlon for 3000+ damage mid-Chapter 5.

Ninja (Akira)
Throwing weapons are good early and mid game weapons, but become increasingly useless as the later game develops. Still has hero-onyl equipment and spells, though.

Monk (Raj Ahtan)
Same hero stuff, plus dual-wield and has some good healing skills, but lacks any real special talents.

Alchemy FTW, plus revives are usefull.

Lots of good spells early, but is outdone by the Sage, Channeler, and Templar.

Lots of good spells, too. More useful if the Training Guides are applied.

Healing spells are a livesaver, and the earth spells are good, but not much of a damage dealer.


Demi FTW. Plus, Bikill (x2 ATK) and Focus (x2 INT). Makes other party members awesome, but is not so awesome himeself, especially late-game.

Black Knight
Pretty strong, lots of HP, good equipment, but lacks a powerful punch. Has some low level spells, though.

Dual-wield can be effective, but spells are lacking, and Toss is underpowered (but too hard to fix! I'd have to change every single battle event).

Useful early on, and stealing is fun, but doesn't do much damage, nor adds much to battle skills.

Tarot cards can be very powerful early and mid game, but loose their luster late game. Heroic Ballad is awesome, though.

No real damage dealing ability, and healing skills pale against other classes.

Tools are good early on, but loose effectiveness later.


This is basically a goof-off. They can become Daredevils WITHOUT needing an elfstone after they reach level 20 or so.

REMEMBER, THIS IS JUST MY OPINION, and like all tiers, completely subjective.


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I'm a dog pirate
Have you thought about maybe tweaking things up to make some of the weaker classes stronger? Maybe a version 1.1 or something? That would be cool, especially since most class systems never get such tweaks in practice.
Well, I am on version 1.5 already. I had considered revamping HR based on feedback and bug reports but....eh.... The game is 2 years old and as it is right now it stands up pretty well. Maybe if I am really bored I'll come back to it, but for now I will be focusing my efforts on new projects and RMN.
A great game but I am having trouble recollecting what I am supposed to do next. I wish there was a walkthrough for the game other than the few hints I have found. I am in Part 4 and dont know what to do in order to go into the desert w/o being finding myself back in jail. Anyway, O am surprised someone didnt make a nice little walkthrough. This is a really good game though and it is keeping my attention. I woul;d like to see whatever new game you come up with.
Well, if you give me some specific details, I can probably direct you on where to go next.
Once a member of RMN, always a member of RMN!
Yea, I looked at this, and I definitely agree with the Daredevil being at the top...

I always have mine have one magic weapon and one physical weapon. My favorite combo is a falcon blade and a lightsaber (I have two of them... the other one went to Holdana).

But, yea... my Holdana party has a channeler, a daredevil, and a templar, all of whom are on 99... no one can even cause damage to them anymore.

I really need to put this game on the shelf!
I was trying to write a review for this game and I realized that I was going to end up reviewing all the classes as well. That doesn't belong in the review, but I thought I should put it somewhere for any future players of the game (or maybe I just want to get it out of my system). Mind if I put that down here? Or should I post that somewhere else?

(Don't worry I will still write the review. It won't be a very well written review... But it will be something... Probably)
Put er down here. Makes sense to me!
Since I can't resist reviewing the classes of this game, I'll post my thoughts on them here. But before that I should talk about what a party needs, what they don't need but is still useful, and what they can do entirely without. Oh boy I hope there isn't a character limit.

What you need...

Damage: If you don't do damage you don't win.

Non-physical damage: You need a source of non-physical damage frequently in every stage of the game. The poison and dragon attributes do not count as non-physical for this purpose. Magic is a good source of this early on. Later on you can just use elemental weapons (plus there is Spirit Skaen).

Non-magical damage: You have this by default but if you equip the wrong weapons on certain parties, you can't win certain encounters. This also does not include poison sadly.

Agility: You need a decent amount of this to prevent enemies from walking all over you (how much depends on how far into the game you are).

What's useful to have

More Agility!: Go before your enemies almost every time! Buff with speedup and get twice or thrice as many turns as your enemies do! Always good in an ATB system.

Extra Healing: Until your offense is so strong that you'll mop the floors with every encounter (including bosses), you'll want some of this. Your hero classes learn this to varying degrees by default, however, so you don't really need more. You can use items to supplement this just fine; so it's useful, but not necessary. This is mostly useful during the prologue chapters (1-4).

High Defenses: High defenses and resistances can completely negate entire attacks (even on the final boss), but they're unnecessary. You'll want a certain baseline of defense, hp, resistances, and the like to help pass through the game. You do not need that much, however. If you keep your gear relatively up to date, you'll do fine. When upgrading defensive gear, prioritize the frailer party members first (there might be nothing you can do to prevent Wizards and Mesmers from dying to surprise encounters for the majority of the game).

Buffs: Specifically the relevant damage buff for that character (bikill, focus, werewolf), and speedup (werewolf counts here too). These will make end game fights go much quicker and will help you to break the game if you're so inclined to do so. Heroic is the pinnacle of all buffs (does not stack with the other buffs mentioned), and is available in two useful flavors: party-wide buff ability; and an item that can even be used outside of battle to buff before the next battle. The wolf shapeshifting buffs (mainly werewolf) deserve special mention because they also provide health regen and immunity to a lot of debuffs and ailments.

Sleep: (Especially sleepmore) You don't need it. However if you're going to inflict an ailment, this is the best one to inflict. It seems like next to nothing resists it (you can sleeplock most bosses so they never get a turn); and even if they wake up within a second or two you've delayed their ATB progress and are effectively damage mitigating.

Poison: Again you don't need it. Both physical and magical immune enemies will ignore it. However, nearly every non-undead enemy that can be hurt with physical damage, can also be poisoned. Keeping up poison on high hp enemies (bosses mostly) is a useful option for characters that otherwise won't be doing much damage (utility, healers, etc). Poison is more useful in this game than pretty much all the games that inspired it.

Demi: Basically a max-hp debuff (half health) that is almost never resisted. It's great to cast on bosses if you have it, but you can do without. Very few classes have this.

Sap, Slow, Inept: Sap is awesome for breaking the game. Slow is always a strong debuff in an ATB system. Inept is reverse heroic.

Money: It's useful in this game. If you upgrade gear frequently, you never have enough. If you don't upgrade frequently enough, party members might die. Why is this in a class review posting? Because skills that restore hp and mp out of combat, revive, or remove ailments will save you trips to the inn and church. Even stealing can be useful to some degree in saving you money and generating cash.

What you can do without

Paying attention to elemental weaknesses: Not a strongsuit in this game. There is no clear feedback when an enemy is weak to something (other than testing the numbers) and no way to bring up that information in a useful format in game. Is the enemy immune to that damage type (which is usually a blanket immunity to all of magic or physical)? No? Are they absorbing it (hard to tell sometimes)? No? That's all you need to know.

Coin toss: Worthless damage. Uses money to do it. This isn't Final Fantasy.

Stealing: Mostly worthless. It can help early on in a prologue chapter to give you a boost in items and money (sell hide herbs you get from it as well), but it's useless for most of the game. There is almost always something better to do (even a joker should probably be using lullaby). Let's be clear for new players. Steal never gives you equipment or unique items. It always gives chests that give either gold (not much) or consumables when opened. This is not Final Fantasy.

Tarot cards: These are mostly gimmicky, often risky, and sometimes fun. The harlequin would be better off doing something else however (killing your enemy, buffing your party, healing, sleeping the enemy, etc... or better yet, rolling another class).

Most debuffs and ailments not already mentioned: Some of these can also be effective damage mitigation, but most of the classes who can use them can also sleep (which they should do instead) or just kill the darn monster.

Vanish, ghosted, ironize: This is not one of those tactical dungeon crawlers like Etrian Odyssey where the enemies will follow specific patterns and eventually use a move that if you don't severely mitigate or avoid completely with a well timed skill, you will die. This is not that game. These are useless.

Weremage: It comes at a point in the game where offensive magic is lacking, requires a turn to cast, then another turn to setup combo magic, and does not stack with heroic. It's worthless. It could have been useful if it was given during the early levels.

Now on to the...

Class reviews in next post! (Worried about possible character limits)
Class Reviews
For the sake of simplicity I will review the Elite Classes with their respective archetypes (and why you should or should not promote to them). I will review the Master Classes (because any non-Hero can become any Master Class as long as you have the right Elfstone) and Heroes' Classes at the end.

Mage Classes

Magic in this game does not scale well. Mage classes will mostly be relegated to support, boss utility, and/or trash clearing by the end of the game (and other classes can clear trash better in the endgame).

The only class I did not try. The black mage of the game. They're incredibly straightforward (read: boring). They are the frailest class in the entire game (worse than Mesmer which I will be commenting on in the Mesmer section). They bring early multi-target spells and good int (magic damage stat) at a point in the game where magic damage is most useful. They also bring access to the Outside and Return spells (go to the entrance to a dungeon and go to a place you've been before during that chapter respectively); so you can save items and spend your hero's mp on healing instead of casting that. Late game they gain some utility with bikill and focus buffs, but you should probably have a source of heroic late game and YOU SHOULD NOT use wizards late game.

Wizards are completely viable and useful in a party seeking trash-clearing and a source of non-physical damage for the early game. Plan on class-changing to an elite or master class if you bring one though.

They are the white mage of the game. They are far less frail than most mages and have better gear options than other mages. The healing they bring is only matched by two Master classes and one Hero in the game. The healing they bring is over-kill. So what else do they have? They bring multi-target earth spells for trash clearing (don't worry flying enemies do not resist earth magic in this game). They have single target bless-skills to obliterate physical immune undead enemies common throughout the game. They also bring Outside to the table so you don't need warp whistles to quickly exit dungeons. They can cure most ailments and revive late game (not an early source of revive). They have defensive buffs in the form of Increase and Resistance (but you don't really need these and that makes their excessive heals even more pointless). They have Slowall, Sleep, and are amazing poisoners. When not healing on boss fights they should be doing one of those three things.

Druids are completely viable for the entirety of the game if you really want to make sure you have enough heals. Aside from heals, other classes can fill their other roles just as well or better (since their healing is over-kill, other classes can arguably do this job just as well or better too). Keep in mind that their damage will never be great and will fall to near useless levels in the late game when magic just doesn't cut it anymore (enemies vulnerable to bless are an exception to this). Poison can still be useful even late game though. So they will never be completely useless unless their role overlaps with other members of the party.


I've heard multiple of people claim these are completely worthless. I disagree. Yes you could be doing more damage instead, but Mesmers are completely viable. It should be noted that they are extremely frail. I ran a Mesmer through chapter 2 (because why not?) and nearly every surprise attack resulted in my poor trapped Mesmer being focus-targeted to death before I even got a turn.

Why are they useful? They can sleeplock bosses with Sleepmore. They can make it so bosses never get a turn. They also are one of the rare sources of Demi which will more than make up for the fact that they will never do any damage at all to a boss outside of poison. Speaking of which, they also are a good source of poison. They also have Sap to make bosses die even faster. For random encounters they are mostly relegated to doing mediocre multi-target poison damage, putting the enemies to sleep, or buffing the party. They get Speedup and Bikill around level 20. So if you aren't inclined to promote them to a sage right away (they are a prime candidate for a master class), they can still make your party twice as strong. Until you have a source of heroic (or an alternate source of Speedup and Bikill), they can contribute more over-all damage capability to your party than many other classes. They can even contribute some minor healing as well to keep your party topped off. Oh and I should obligatorily mention Outside and Return; since I mentioned those for the other two mages thus far.

Mesmers are viable until late game when you have access to heroic and are better off just outright killing an enemy with more damage anyways. They remain viable in boss fights for the entirety of the game, however. Sleepmore, Demi, Poismost, Sap, and even Regen means that they will never be useless during a boss fight. It should be noted that some of their roles overlap with Druids. You should probably not have both of those classes in the same party.


The most unique of the mage classes. They are a mixed bag. They get some glitchy spells like Raise Skeleton (which is basically useless) and Corpse Explosion (which doesn't always work) that should be disregarded right away. They get a spell that scales with level called Poison Dagger, which allows them to contribute some mediocre strength based poison damage and possibly inflict the poison ailment with their regular attacks for the rest the battle (it replaces their equipped weapon). The poison dagger isn't that great in practice; it is a single hit, does poison rather than physical damage (more enemies resist it), requires a turn to cast it in the first place, and the Warlock has the worst strength growth in the game (the high damage of the weapon does not compensate for this).

Warlocks, however... are awesome. They get access to Hurtmore fairly early and therefore always have a decent source of single target magic damage (magic damage still falls off late game). They have decent anti-undead damage for those pesky physical immune enemies as well (this never really falls off though there are better sources of bless damage). They are the earliest source of revive magic. They can also keep their own party topped off during the mid-game by casting Regen between battles.

They get Alchemy. Alchemy allows you to produce certain items by using mp and turns in combat. These can be used to heal or restore mp for your parties (yes other parties as well) during combat or outside of combat. This is not why Alchemy is great. Alchemy allows you to make rainbow drops; which are a single target item that causes heroic. Rainbow drops can be used outside of battle to pre-buff heroic before a boss fight. Rainbow drops also allowed me to break the second to last boss fight (woops! I'm not sorry). Alchemy also allows them to craft an item only they can use that does the most single target poison damage in the game (this is unnecessary. I just thought I should mention it).

It should be noted that Warlocks can equip any cursed equipment you find. This is mostly worthless... But, if you only plan on only using magic casting and Alchemy the entire time (no weapon attacking or poison dagger), then the downside of certain curses doesn't apply. You can therefore stack some extremely high defense on your Warlock, if you're so inclined. Be advised that cursed equipment are extremely glitchy, however (the curses may not always work or the item might randomly disappear for good).

Because of Alchemy, Warlocks are always viable in a party that isn't going to be fighting bosses during the end game. Have them make elixirs and rainbow drops while running through a dungeon and then party swap for a boss fight. Their damage on bosses during the prologue chapters is fairly good because of Hurt and possibly Hurtmore (if you grinded too much for whatever reason); so don't be concerned with that. Even if you don't take any other mages (in any of your parties) or you don't plan on using Channelers and Daredevils (strong end game sources of heroic) in a specific party, you should consider a Warlock (doesn't even matter which party they are in.. they can allow any party access to Heroic as long as you farm up some random encounters and make some drugz *cough*).

The first of the Elite Classes I'll cover. Other mages can promote to this class after level 20 by going to a specific place and spending half of their current level rounded down (you can also cheat to get them earlier). They have chain magic which casts a spell of your choice twice in a turn (mp is consumed twice as well). This allows their damage to stay passable despite how weak offensive spells are in this game. They only carry single target damage and healing spells until the extreme late game (you won't see Thordain on them unless you grind like crazy or keep a sage in your most used party for the entire game). Their single target damage and healing is good though (as far as magic damage can get anyhow). What else do they have? Sleepmore, Demi, Bikill, Poismost, Sap, revive magics. See a theme here? Only lacking in Speedup, everything I said about the perks of a Mesmer during boss fights can apply to them as well. Unlike a Mesmer, they can still hurt the boss when sleep and poison do not need to be reapplied. On top of all this they can also heal ailments and have access to the obligatory Outside and Return (only Warlocks and Channelers lack both of these traveling spells as far as Mages are concerned).

Sages are viable for the entire game. Do not pick sages (or mage classes in general) if all you're looking for is damage. Their damage can be easily surpassed by most physical damage oriented classes unless they are level 45+ (way over-leveled), but they make up for that with boss utility and as a source of heals and revives. If you want to do damage as a mage during end game boss fights at all, Sage is the only choice (not counting the Magus Hero Class). The Channeler Master Class does not cut it for single target damage (and Templars have better things to do).

With the exception of a single Warlock (unless you cooked up an insane amount of rainbow drops first), promoting other mage classes to a Sage is usually a good idea. Their damage far surpasses Wizards against single targets (and there are plenty of better ways to kill groups than using wizards), and they can replace Druids as long as you don't care about losing group-targeted heals during fights. I've already mentioned how they are basically superior Mesmers in everything but the buff department (lack of speedup is a killer until you're spamming heroic).

That's all for the Mage Classes (I'll cover Channelers alongside the other Master Classes). I'll do this piecemeal over multiple posts since I don't have time to write up all this at once (plus there could be evil character limits).
why would i heal when i could equip a morningstar
I haven't played for a while, but I remember loving the alchemy class (Warlocks?) a LOT. Those potions are very useful early, and not useless in chapter 5. Holdana is also easily the best hero, yeah, and I also agree with RydiaZefiryn being second-best.
(Every time I walked by my computer I noticed a typo in my previous posts x.x)

Rogue Classes

This section is going to be shorter than the Mage section because... I'll be honest with you. If I played this game again the only reason I would justify taking a Rogue over a Warrior (who does more damage) or a Mage (who has more utility) is because EVERY Rogue can eventually promote into the Daredevil Master Class. The Daredevil class is essentially every Rogue class 2.0 (minus Tarot cards and Goof Off which won't be missed). The mixed bag that each individual Rogue Class brings to the table (plus one Hero Class) combines to make a bag of tricks for every situation (and a bunch of extra stuff besides) in the Daredevil's arsenal. But this isn't about Daredevils, this section is about the individual parts that make up one complete Dare_ I mean this is about Rogue Classes.

Don't roll a Bandit. Moving on to Harlequins now... No? FINE.

Bandits have four things going for them (sort of): High Agility; Stealing (this is what I meant by sort of); Access to whips (these weapons hit twice); and Traps (again with the sort of). High agility and access to whips would be nice if their Strength stats weren't so subpar that they can't do much with those extra turns / hits to begin with. If you wanted to hit twice for more damage you could just roll a Ronin (which isn't saying much because Ronins aren't a great Warrior Class to begin with). What are you going to do with those extra turns? Fight? Shapeshifters move fast too and they hit like trucks. Steal? Scroll up a few posts to read what I think of Stealing. Use traps? Traps are a mixed bag of abilities that all have a chance to fail and are not that great to begin with. The only traps you might get any use out of are Live Wire (learned late so you would probably only use this on a Daredevil and DDs have better options) and the single target slow.

Don't roll a Bandit. If you must, they are viable (tolerable) for the prologue chapters. Promote to a Master Class or Joker (with intent to promote to a Daredevil) ASAP.

Don't roll a Harl_ OKAY FINE! Just note that I am now going to disregard Tarot Cards entirely. If you want to know what I think of Tarot Cards scroll up a few posts.

Harlequins at least have utility they bring to the table. They have Sing Skills; which bring a weak multi-target heal (doesn't matter if it's weak if you're using it to top off your HP between battles), a multi-target cure-all ailments, a multi-target sleep (not Sleepmore), and a party-wide late game Heroic Buff. Sounds useful? It is but... Everything I just listed is also shared with Daredevils and Jokers. What do they bring to the table that Jokers and Daredevils do not? Dice and Card weapons (while Jokers can equip these as well, they can't actually use them). Dice weapons are low base damage weapons with somewhere around a 75% critical hit rate. Arcana Cards are the highest base damage weapon in the game... But base damage is not the most important factor in what makes a weapon good and most of the time the dice will actually hit harder. Are Harlequins any good with these weapons? No. Their mediocre Strength growth means they'll never amount to much of anything with these weapons. Harlequins can also equip almost all whip weapons, but again mediocre strength (and Daredevils can equip ALL whip weapons and dual-wield them).

Harlequins are at least viable for the entirety of the game due to their utility and the fact that their unique weapons allow them to at least do some passable single target damage (nowhere near any Warrior class). You're better off promoting (or cheating and just starting with a Joker). If you don't want a Daredevil, and you just want some utility, you should roll a Mage.

If you're going to roll a Rogue, rolling an Engineer is not a bad idea. They are a sturdy class with strong unique armor choices. They also have access to tools. Tools are essentially physical based spells that don't cost any MP. What does this bring them? Two multi-target physical attacks (one is mid-to-late game but ignores defense), a multi-target poison, a single target death attack, and a mid-to-late game multi-target earth attack that actually does good damage (it's earth so it also hurts ghosts). They have mediocre strength, however. Although they have access to a larger weapon selection over-all, dice are strictly better, and I don't believe they can use whips (at least not the early whips). They can trash-clear as soon you can afford to buy the auto-crossbow tool so they still take the early game advantage from Harlequins and Bandits.

Engineers are viable for the entire game, but you should promote (you're gonna promote right? You should promote. Daredevils have tools too. Promote). You don't really need the excessive defense and unique armors they have available. They do make a good stepping stone to promoting towards Daredevils; so I can't really say don't take one.

It is also not a bad idea to roll a Ranger. If equipped with a bow, Rangers will put out better single target damage than all previously covered Rogue Classes (Daredevil will still do more damage though) for most of the game (later on they can still put out better damage if buffed by someone else). With a bow equipped they have access to a self-buff of Bi-kill (2x damage) for the cost of 0 mp and one turn to actually use the buff. This of course means that on their second turn it's as if they attacked normally for two turns and on their third turn they've now done four turns worth of damage (this is an approximation. This is not how the damage formula works exactly). Their damage in the early game is actually competitive with Warriors but it falls off late game. They also have Nature Skills which are a mixed bag that has skills dependent on your location (are you outside? are you in a dungeon?) unless you have the requisite Training skill (Wilderness Training, Cave Training, Etc). The training skills are learned through books found throughout Chapter 5, but Daredevils learn them just by leveling up. Nature Skills mostly bring a bunch of different elemental spells (yep they can fight ghosts quite well... they even have strong bless magic) and some self-buffs. Some notable exceptions are: a sap; a revive; a single-target death spell; and several multi-target heals. The Daredevil has better stat growths so it can do everything a Ranger can better.

Rangers are viable for the entire game if you find the skills books, but again you should promote. For the prologue chapters they'll have access to two bows and are able to hurt ghosts much of the time as well as heal during world map encounters (unless on the sea). They are a great stepping stone to other classes.

Speaking of stepping stones... We now look at our second "Elite" Class. Jokers are terrible with next to no redeeming qualities. They however are the only Elite Class that can promote again (to Daredevil). This makes them worthwhile. In the interim, while you're leveling them up to promote again (happens quite fast at the point in the game where you can get Jokers without cheating), they can use the Harlequin's Sing Skills to not be completely useless. They can't attack. They can only Goof Off instead. You should never Goof Off. It is literally a joke (it can even kill party members). They have stealing as well but I don't even know why I bothered to mention that. They also have flee but if I didn't bother to mention that when talking about the Engineer why would I elaborate on it here.

Jokers are not viable. They are worth it, however, because they promote to Daredevils. This is the only way to get more than four Master classes in a single play-through.

All Rogue classes should promote to Jokers (maybe not all at once though) with the intention of promoting again.

Next up are Warrior Classes... In the next post.
(I wonder how many typos I missed while proof-reading this post...)
I haven't played for a while, but I remember loving the alchemy class (Warlocks?) a LOT. Those potions are very useful early, and not useless in chapter 5. Holdana is also easily the best hero, yeah, and I also agree with RydiaZefiryn being second-best.

Hee hee, I don't agree that Zefiryn is the second best hero class, but I'll get to that eventually.

Holdana isn't up for debate, though. her damage is only surpassed by two classes (neither of those classes are Hero classes).

Warrior Classes
What can I say here without sounding like a broken record? Strictly speaking, Warriors are the best suited to dealing damage in this game. Geared properly the Warriors (with the exception of the Ronin) can out-damage every class I've covered thus far (no I haven't covered the Daredevil yet despite how many times I said Daredevil in this thread) in the majority of situations from the mid-game onward. That said, there is very little reason not to promote your warriors to the Elite Champion Class (whose damage potential is tens of thousands of points higher than the next closest basic Warrior). But let's get on with it.

Black Knights:
Black Knights are your basic RPG Fighter class with an added perk of having access to some offensive spells. This allows the Black Knight to help clear trash and to fight ghosts early on. The low int of the Black Knight, coupled with the poor damage scaling of magic over-all, prevents this from being too useful passed the prologue chapters. The ability to fight ghosts is still a major boon in chapters 1-4 but the Paladin can actually do this better. That said, the Black Knight hits much harder than the Paladin and will do so for the entire game (except versus ghosts).

Black Knights have way more defense than any class needs so you shouldn't have to worry about your Black Knight dying.

Black Knights are SLOW. Your enemy will move before them. Since it is quite possible that the Black Knight is a major contributor to your party's damage, your enemy might still be very much alive when it is time for them to attack you. Because of this, it is advised to not pair frail, squishy classes with a Black Knight unless you can slow or disable (sleep) your enemy. It is also advised to equip your Black Knight with agility gear.

Black Knights are viable for the entire game based on their equipment options and Strength growth alone. Their magic will contribute very little after the mid-game and their agility will be a problem. Promoting to a Champion is still advised because the Champion will do everything the Black Knight does better (even fight ghosts if you equip a non-physical damage weapon).

Paladins are basically a tanky support class. They get a revive late game and they heal just the right amount. They lack the ability to cure ailments, so they can't completely replace a Druid without item support (honestly the only ailment you get hit with constantly is poison and Zefiryn has antidote; so you could stick a Paladin in her party if you wanted). Paladins are one of the most effective anti-undead classes in the game. They get every Bless spell by the end of the game and Bless is the only offensive magic that remains competitive with physical damage dealing all the way through the game.

The Paladin is the second weakest warrior offensively by the end of the game(especially if it receives buff support... poor Ronin) unless very rare gear is given to the weakest Warrior class in order for it to compete. The Paladin ,when geared appropriately, will still be able to out-damage all mages in single target damage (including the Channeler I have yet to cover) and nearly every Rogue (except the Ranger and Daredevil).

All that said, you don't need a Paladin. You don't need more healing. They don't bring any extra utility beyond the whole fighting the undead thing and a late game revive. They're also slow. Again your enemies will move before them. Of course, a Paladin can just heal up the damage your enemies will do (assuming your party member survives), but you would be better off preventing that damage in the first place (by murder... murder is your best defense).

The Paladin is viable through the entire game... But honestly, they'll hold you back. The slot dedicated to a Paladin would be better off filled with a real support or more damage. Take a Paladin if you want a little extra healing and some anti-undead utility in the early game; with the intent to promote ASAP during chapter 5.

Shapeshifters are murder. This is my favorite class. In chapters 1-4, nothing can out-damage them against single targets (not even that Champion you cheated by starting with). They're fast. Due to the nature of their shapeshifting spells, nothing can really kill them either. They don't require healing support. They don't require cures to most ailments. Most ailments will fail on them when in wolf form and shapeshifting cancels most ailments and debuffs (except stopspell). You could plausibly run an entire party of shapeshifters through chapter 2 (just have Zefiryn handle the ghosts and use some scrolls) and just walk away from the computer during every boss (that isn't a ghost) and win.

Their biggest flaws are their lack of non-physical damage, and poor gear selection (mostly the poor weapon choices). I believe their earliest access to a non-physical damage type is the Ladykiller/Maneater weapons in chapter 5. Of course, those are relatively well hidden; so a casual player might not find them. The next option would be the fire claw; which I'm fairly certain is only available after you obtain a ship in chapter 5. Because of this, they cannot fight ghosts for a good chunk of the game.

Elemental restrictions aside, their limited gear choices also hinder them defensively (hah they don't need it anyways) and causes their damage potential to fall off by the end of the game (when nearly everyone else can catch up to them by using Falcon Blades). The lack of defensive options can be counteracted in part choosing a female Shapeshifter (more armor options for all classes).

They are a prime candidate for the Blade of Arborlon since it is only one of two multi-hitting weapons they can actually equip. The Blade of Arborlon would be better used in the hands of a class that can pummel, however. The only other weapon that lets them remain competitive in the end game is the Tiger Claw (this is store bought, though; so you don't have to worry about someone else needing it more).

As long as you work around these flaws, Shapeshifters are viable for the entire game (easily). After a certain point (level 16 maybe, level 31 definitely) the Champion class WILL OUTDAMAGE them and the gap will get larger and larger (until the Champion is doing 30,000+ damage and your Shapeshifter is doing 5,000 x.x). The Shapeshifter also does not benefit from buffing; so once your party has a reliable source of Heroic, it's probably time to promote.

Honestly, don't roll a Ronin. Just don't. They're faster than Black Knights and Paladins, but they're still slow. Their low strength (relative to Warriors) is made up by the fact that they can dual-wield, but their weapon selection is terrible. They can self-buff, BUT THEY NEED TO SELF BUFF in order to compete at all (and of course none of these buffs stack with Heroic later anyways).

They can Sap, and this is actually a perk, but so can Daredevils. Ronins are basically inferior Daredevils (wait are we back on the Rogue post again?). In the early and mid game you're better off with a Black Knight or Shapeshifter, and in the late game you're better off with a Daredevil.

Even Paladins and Rangers can outdamage them against single targets passed the mid-game, unless you give them the Blade of Arborlon in one hand (and THAT would DEFINITELY be better off in the hands of somebody else).

Ronins are still viable through the mid-game. If you give them the Blade of Arborlon and a good Katana (or something like the Maneater), they can be viable through the end game... But... You should definitely promote, their is no competition at all between a Champion and a Ronin unless you have no other source of Sap across your 16 characters (which you should... seriously why don't you?). Honestly, you shouldn't even roll one to begin with.

Broken. Champions are a walking exploit of the inherent flaws built into RM2k3's base system. Their sole ability is Pummel. They share this ability with Templars and our Huntress Hero, Holdana (henceforth known as Triple H). Pummel is just a straight up damage multiplier that scales with level. Pummel gets exponentially stronger when used with a multi-hitting weapon and buffs (multiplying multipliers makes you stronger, go figure). Champions are tied with Templars (it's hard to test which, if any, is stronger) as the strongest Class in terms of raw single-target damage. Only Holdana can compete by the end of the game; everyone else is left in the dust (though Daredevils can compete at random in what seems like less than 5% of their turns).

Champions also have excellent stat growths and gear selections.

Their only weakness is their lack of non-physical damage without equipping certain weapons. Since those weapons are available all over chapter 5, this is only relevant if you cheat and start with one rather than promoting.

They have no utility. They don't need utility. Their purpose is damage. They do benefit from another party member bringing utility (especially buffs and Sap), but they will still out-damage everyone without those things.

Champions are VIABILITY. . .

All Warrior classes should promote to Champion. If you feel like you're low on heals, you might consider keeping a Paladin... But the fact that you took a Paladin might actually be why you need so much healing in the first place (you're taking more damage because you're killing slower and acting slower).

End of Warrior reviews. On to the Master Classes.
Master Classes
Two of the three Master Classes can be summed up as just a lot of elements that make up other classes thrown together into one package and coupled with fantastic stat growths (that put your Heroes to shame). The Channeler is... Well, we'll get to that.

Just know that if you use an elfstone to promote someone to a Master class, it does not matter what class they were beforehand (it is often better to take a class stuck in a role that is no longer necessary and convert them into something entirely different for the rest of the game). Using elfstones is best done as early as possible since it reduces the character to level one (they catch up quick though). Of course, you have to find the elfstone first.

Oh, and you should never bother promoting a Rogue to a Daredevil using an elfstone, because they can become that naturally anyways and you would just be wasting a finite resource.

Champion with perks. Need I say more? I must? Fine. Everything I said about Champion applies here too. Templars break the game.

On top of the broken exploit that is pummel, Champions have: Healing (better than Druids); ailment recovery; revives; multi-target spell damage that can be chain cast (they can compete with Sages in single target magic damage for most of the game AND they can multi-target); the second best source of bless damage (Spirit Skean is the best if you're wondering); death magic (don't need it); shapeshifting (why do they even have this? It's pointless on them...); and fairly good int and mp growths.

All of that I just listed is extra. Templars should be played like Champions most of the time. The rest is bloat. If you need healing/revives/ailment recovery during combat, someone else should do it (seriously the Templar can probably just end the fight BY MURDER instead of healing). If you are fighting ghosts, the Templar will still do more damage by equipping a Ghostblade or some other weapon that can hurt them. They can use death magic, but they can also kill anything in the game within a couple turns. Shapeshifting actually gimps them, so don't do it. Decent MP and int is nice for spell casting; but since the Templar is better off attacking, it doesn't need much MP and int.

All that said, the Templar is actually one of the best candidates in the game for your permanent str and agi stat up seeds. Throw a Templar into your main boss killing party for chapter 5 and stack all those permanent stat upgrades on them. Give them a good multi-hitting weapon like a Falcon Blade, Blade of Arborlon, or the Lightsabre. Have someone buff them, sap the boss, and then watch as they solo the boss; probably killing it in one (multi-hit) attack if pummel is activated beforehand.

All Master and Hero classes are viable for the entire part of the game that they are available to some degree or another; so I'm not gonna bother with this paragraph anymore.

Jack of all trades and master of many. Daredevils are utility incarnate. They can heal. They can buff (Heroic anyone?). They can debuff (Sap is all that matters here but they can also slow). They can sleep (multi-target sleepmore). They can revive. They can DESTROY UNDEAD (Spirit Skean is way too strong). They can cure ailments. They have multiple sources of death magic. They can trash sweep better than Mages. They even do consistent damage. They have a rare chance (pretty low) of doing damage that is competitive with Triple H, Champions, and Templars when attacking.

It should also be noted that when they do get that critical Strike combo, they have the potential to do the most hits in one attack out of any class in the game. I've managed 50, but I've heard that a second Lightsabre might be obtainable (an exploit? maybe I just missed it. It better not have been in that ridiculous invisible floor maze with the obscenely high encounter rate). A second Lightsabre would make 60 hits plausible and allow them to do the highest damage in the game when 5x strike triggers.

Having one Daredevil in every party is a good idea. They basically fill in all the gaps you might have by taking certain other classes. Sure you might do more damage with another Champion, but 3 Champions is already overkill (one can solo-kill the final boss within three turns easily). Oh and I literally can't justify taking a mage over a Daredevil... So yeah... Vote Daredevil.

Channelers are... well they're actually not great. Their biggest contribution is early Heroic. Once Daredevils have access to Heroic (or if you keep a Warlock around and make a lot of Rainbow Drops), they have no real purpose. Their single target damage is terrible. Their Multi-target damage is mediocre (relative to Daredevils, Templars, and what you can do with several classes and creative boomerang weapon use). They do have Inept (but since a daredevil can Sap, you don't need this either). Their bless also Sleeps (but Spirit Skean will probably just outright kill that same Undead instead of putting it to sleep so Daredevils win here too).

They're essentially a support class for the lazy, that lacks a revive. Their heal is probably the best heal in the game, because it tops you off and cures all debuffs and ailments; but you don't really need this. Their Poison is probably the best poison you'll actually use (or maybe you won't.. I don't think I did.. but it is a good poison). They can Sap and damage at the same time (but the damage is poor).

You really don't need them though. I think the most useful thing a Channeler does is replace that useless class you put in that 3rd or 4th party to try out and realized it wasn't as great as it looked on paper. Their best aspect is that they promote from an elfstone.

If you want a Mage for boss support, bring a Sage. If you want Heroic, bring a Warlock (in any one of your parties.. you only need one) or a Daredevil (in the party you want Heroic for). If you want healing (why?), bring your Hero that you have to bring anyways. If you want MORE healing, bring a Templar, Daredevil, or Sage. Debuffs? Daredevil, Sage. Trashsweeping? Daredevil, Templar (he'll just pummel everything to death with 20hits anyhow), Triple H, Zefiryn, Champion. Ailments? Sage, Daredevil, Akira.

I honestly can't justify taking one for any reason other than laziness. Take a Channeler if you're lazy.

(Heroes coming at some point)
Master Classes seemed like a good idea in my head at the time...
Master Classes seemed like a good idea in my head at the time...
o.o Did I come across too negative?

Welp, hopefully I don't sound too negative here.

Heroes and Their Classes

The Hero Classes share a few things in common: they all have middling stat growths that can't compete with the best classes; they all share certain support utility spells (heals, a revive, Outside, Return); they all share certain offensive spells (Zap, Thunder, Thordain, etc).

Despite this, they're not created equally. Due to certain abilities and some weapon restrictions, some heroes are capable of far more damage than others. Raj Ahtan has about double the single-target damage potential of Akira and Zefiryn, and we'll talk about Holdana later. Some heroes are much better at utility or support than others. Raj Ahtan has group heals and essentially an infinite mana pool. Akira is a spell or two shy of being an amazing boss utility character.

But let's get to it.

Ninja(Akira) and Magus (Zefiryn)

I constantly go back and forth between which of these Heroes is the weakest. So, instead I'll just compare them together.

Zefiryn's unique ability is Magicombo. This is essentially an inferior Pummel for magic / inferior Chainmagic. It takes a turn to set up. It only doubles the number of spells cast (no 5x here). It is also extremely glitchy (I've had her kill party members after using it and it can lock up the ATB bar under certain conditions). I'm not quite sure why a gifted hero on a quest to save the world has an inferior casting ability (and inferior int) than some nameless mooks recruited to come with her, but there it is.

Akira's Unique ability is Throw. Throw is what a lot of the Rogue Abilities wish they were, and it is a major contributor to the Daredevil's bag of tricks. It brings: a multi-target Sleepmore (yes this is exploitable); the strongest anti-undead ability (Spirit Skean); multi-target death magic; MP and HP drain lumped together in one attack; and an early game trash sweeping ability. Throw is a great toolset. It is, sadly, better off in the Daredevil's hands. Yes, Akira suffers from inferior-DD Syndrome (Akira: "Hi, my name is Akira, and I'm an inferior Daredevil." Nameless Mook Engineer: "Me too!" Nameless Mook Sage:"Me Three!" Nameless Mook Daredevil: "You guys suck!").

These Heroes have very different abilities. So, why am I comparing them? Well, both of these Heroes suffer from inferior offense and are better defined by the support and utility they bring to their parties.

Zefiryn brings: better trash clearing ability (especially early and mid-game); Fairly decent anti-ghost capabilities (Magic damage is supposed to be her specialty after all); sleep (just sleep); and Bikill (but sadly no Speedup to pair with it).

Akira has: strong poisons (Poismost); Sleepmore (Multi-target); Strong Anti-undead (Spirit Skean is so OP); Speedup (but he can only bikill himself and he shouldn't be the greatest contributor of single target damage in his party unless you didn't take a Warrior for some reason); and a group targetted Sap.

Sadly they're both missing something compared to other classes. Akira is missing Bikill (or better yet, Heroic) and (arguably) Demi in order to match the boss utility of Sages and Mesmers (He's closest in utility to these two classes). It would be nice if Zefiryn had Speedup and Sleepmore instead of sleep, but it is what it is (Chainmagic would be great too).

So how do they compare offensively?

Zefiryn has shapeshifting in the form of Wolfman and Wolflord (yes she does better single target damage by shapeshifting for most of the game). Werewolf is replaced by Weremage (always missing something to complete the package, these two...), sadly; which comes far too late in the game to be of any use at all to her. She can also contribute to her party's overall damage with a well placed Bikill (doubling a Warrior's damage will probably do way more damage than Zefiryn and Akira combined). Late game she can spend extreme amounts of MP by Magicombo'ing Thordain to do passable damage (this only does slightly more overall single target damage than Akira with a Falcon Blade since she has to spend a turn to set up Magicombo).

Akira can self buff with Speedup and Bikill (this means he is faster than Zefiryn since she does not have Werewolf). Speedup affects the entire party so he contributes to ending fights sooner (overall damage is the same but it is dealt faster). He can also maintain strong poisons on high hp targets. He can equip whips (except the best whip, but who cares... Falcon Blade) to hit twice for most of the game (he IS stronger at single target damage in the early game).

All in all, they are both missing important pieces to complete their offense, support, and utility. While writing this I did end up managing to convince myself that Akira is actually more useful than Zefyrin; but they are so close that it doesn't really matter.

Monk(Raj Ahtan)

Raj Ahtan is a physical, single-target damage powerhouse that can out-damage a shapeshifter once buffed up. If pummel wasn't in this game, he would compete for highest damage in the game with Daredevils (Daredevils would win though, because dual-wield Falcon Blades / Lightsabres and higher str). His best feature is dual-wielding. Late game, he can dual-wield Tiger Claws to hit 4 times per attack and easily out-damage Akira and Zefyrin and their piddly Falcon Blades / Magicombo Thordains (he has higher strength growth on top of that). In the end game he will be doing 3-5k more damage to single targets than Akira or Zefyrin if geared properly.

There is an accessory in this game that was practically made for him. The Lunar Shawl is found late game and causes the character to be permanently buffed with Werewolf (This is amazing even though it doesn't stack with Heroic). Throwing this accessory on people who can already shapeshift lowers their overall damage in order to save them a turn (or they can equip a str accesssory which will then scale with werewolf... I.E. The smart option). Throwing this accessory on someone who can pummel prevents them from pummeling and therefore gimps them. That really only leaves two options: Daredevils; and Raj. Daredevils lose all the utility they bring by doing this. Raj, however, can still use his great healing to top up between battles. Throwing this accessory on Raj makes him an invincible (yeah he literally can't die unless death magic works on Werewolves) berserker of MURDER. In random encounters, he will probably go immediately (unless the enemy surprise attacks you) and he will probably kill most of your enemies before anyone else gets a turn. If they survive his first turn, he will probably get another turn before they do and finish them off.

His ultimate weapon is kind of pointless. If ANYONE ELSE could equip it, then it would arguably be one of the best weapons in the game. However, dual-wielding Tiger Claws easily surpasses it in damage (and can be done much sooner).

His unique ability, Chi. Allows him to self-buff his agility and strength (the important buffs) at the cost of a couple turns (which come quickly if you buff agility first); which is useful until you have a source of Heroic or the Lunar Shawl. Chi also allows him to meditate (best done before battle) which causes him to regain HP and MP every time a friend or foe takes a turn. Essentially this means he will never run out of MP if you utilize this smartly.

Raj is also the best healer (among the Heroes). He gets strong group heal spells from level 20 onwards. Coupled with nigh infinite MP, his party never needs another healer. He lacks a means to take care of ailments, however. His infinite MP and healing ability makes his party a great candidate for the longer paths in dungeons where your Heroes split up.


And then there is Triple H. I don't have much to say here. Her ultimate weapon is more useless than Akira's (which I didn't even bother to mention because it is useless). She has great poisoning ability but she is better off just murdering her opponent. She has pummel. She is broken. While she does clearly less damage than Champions and Templars, it is practically semantics at that point (Triple H: "Damage race!" Templar, Champion, Daredevil, Raj: "Okay!" Triple H: " Aww I only did 45k to my boss but the Templar and Champion did 50k to theirs..." Daredevil: " I only did 9k..." Raj: "I did 8k...").

If you don't want to save all of your seeds until you have a Templar, then she is a great candidate for them. They're arguably more useful on her anyways due to diminishing returns.

Her main advantage over Champions and Templars are her better defensive options (due to Hero only gear and resistances). These are totally overkill and irrelevant.

I have literally nothing else to say about her.
no, I just think your write-up made him realize how broken the master classes are (excluding the channeler of course).
ANNNNND done. Let me know if I overlooked anything that might make a class more useful than I said.
These are great in-depth analysises (analysii?) of (almost) all of the classes! I really appreciate that you took the time to write down your thoughts on them and how they all interplayed with equipment and buffs. It is much food for thought.
These are great in-depth analysises (analysii?) of (almost) all of the classes! I really appreciate that you took the time to write down your thoughts on them and how they all interplayed with equipment and buffs. It is much food for thought.

Analyses (with a ees sound at the end)

I really should go through all that I wrote and punctuate properly, move the parentheticals to better locations, and get rid of all that poorly used capitalization... But that's not gonna happen.

I'll finish writing my review for your game by the end of the week (and try not to tear it apart in the process :P but even if I do I'll probably give it 4 stars).
Tear away if you feel it needs it. The game has issues. I can only rationalize it in the sense that Elite and Master classes were more of a kind of "bonus" in my mind, than core game, and I treated them thusly in my design (or lack thereof). Also, I thought that Falcon Blade could only be found - I don't even remember which store I put them in. welp.
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