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Table of Contents

Tier Rating

Analysis by CCZeroFire
Matthew - Faithful Spy

3-4

Obtainable as a 3 - 4 only

Hero Stats

Max Avg Total Stats at Lvl 40
148
HP 41
ATK 25
SPD 34
DEF 30
RES 18

Stat Variations

Level 1 Stat Variation
5★
4★
3★
HP ATK SPD DEF RES
Low 16 5 9 5 4
Middle 17 6 10 6 5
High 18 7 11 7 6

Level 40 Stat Variations
5★
4★
3★
HP ATK SPD DEF RES
Low 38 22 31 27 14
Middle 41 25 34 30 18
High 44 29 37 33 21

IV Sets

Key stats worth increasing through nature if possible.
Complementary stats that matter, but not to the point of picking them over key stats for nature increase.
Relatively worthless stat that can safely be decreased through nature.
HPATKSPDDEFRES

Assets

  • +ATK: Matthew's base Attack stat is hideously low, at just 25. His 4-point Attack Asset will essentially be mandatory on most sets in order to make up for it.

Neutral

  • SPD: Though Matthew would greatly appreciate boosting his Speed, improving his poor Attack stat will usually be much more important.

  • DEF: The same as with his Speed; he simply requires the Attack much more.

Flaws

  • -HP: Though it lowers both his physical and his magical bulk, it can make it slightly easier to get into the low-HP threshold of skills such as Vantage, and he actually ends up with one more point of magical bulk compared to a Resistance Flaw,

  • -RES: A Resistance Flaw helps maintain his good physical bulk, though beware it is a 4-point drop, and leaves him with just 55 magical bulk at full HP before the effects of any other skills.

Skill Sets

Oh? You're Approaching Me? (Vantage)

Recommended
Spy's Dagger (+Eff) A Close Counter
Alternate: Brazen Atk/Def 3
Reposition
Alternate: Reciprocal Aid
B Vantage 3
Moonbow
Alternate: Bonfire
C Atk Smoke 3
Alternate: Spd Smoke 3
SP2035SSeal Atk 3
Alternate: Brazen Atk/Def 3

Show Explanation/Analysis

Preferred IV: +ATK / -HP or -RES

  • Matthew desperately wants as much Attack as possible. His choice of Flaw is largely preference.

Weapon: Spy's Dagger (+Eff)

  • With its unique refine, Spy's Dagger gains a "reverse Bladetome" effect, like Gunnthrá's weapon Blizzard.

Assist: Reposition / Reciprocal Aid

  • Movement assists like Reposition are solid and reliable team support options.

  • His native Reciprocal Aid can actually be quite useful, serving a few different purposes:

    • He can use it to heal up an ally in need when Matthew's own combat isn't needed.

    • It can allow him to quickly get himself into Vantage range, if the opportunity presents itself.

    • It enables a frontline Matthew to quickly leech HP from an ally if he finds himself needing more HP to survive the next turn.

Special: Moonbow / Bonfire

  • A low-cooldown Special like Moonbow is most likely to be up when Matthew needs it.

  • Bonfire scales greater with his high Defense, especially after buffs from Spy's Dagger, though it will activate less often.

Passive A: Close Counter / Brazen Atk/Def

  • Allows him to counterattack melee units. Greatly improves his Enemy Phase potential.

  • Theoretically replaceable with both cheaper skills like Fury or Brazen Atk/Def, or high investment skills like Steady Stance 4, but it will severely shrink the list of units he can viably combat.

Passive B: Vantage

  • With Vantage, Matthew can hope to one-shot squishier debuff enemies before getting hit.

  • Fortunately, even if he fails to one-shot, Matthew may still often have the bulk to a couple more hits thanks to the boost from Spy's Dagger plus any Attack-debuff skills he runs.

Passive C: Atk Smoke / Spd Smoke

  • Atk Smoke both boosts Matthew's survivability and increases the bonus damage granted by Spy's Dagger.

  • Spd Smoke will not grant him any direct bulk but may end up more ultimately useful if it successfully prevents a follow-up from a fast opponent.

Sacred Seal: Seal Atk / Brazen Atk/Def

  • As Atk Smoke does not affect his actual target, the Seal Atk seal can be used alongside it and greatly aid him in 1v1 situations and pickoffs.

  • Brazen Atk/Def can provide similar effective stats, though may be more coveted among other units. Meanwhile, there is virtually no competition for the Seal Atk seal—stick it on him and never ever have to worry about needing to move it around ever.

Death Marker (Chill Player Phase)

Spy's Dagger (+Eff) A Death Blow (3 or 4)
Alternate: Swift Sparrow (2 or 3)
Draw Back
Alternate: Reposition
B Chill Def 3
Moonbow
Alternate: Bonfire
C Even Atk Wave 3
Alternate: Hone Spd 3
SP1645SDrive Atk 2

Show Explanation/Analysis

Preferred IV: +ATK / -HP or -RES

  • Matthew desperately wants as much Attack as possible. His choice of Flaw is largely preference.

Weapon: Spy's Dagger (+Eff)

  • Matthew can utilize Spy's Dagger "reverse Bladetome" to specifically chase after enemies that have been "marked" by Chill skills.

Assist: Draw Back / Reposition

  • Another preferential choice. Draw Back may help him stay safer alongside his poor Enemy Phase.

Special: Moonbow / Bonfire

  • Moonbow's lower cooldown helps him activate it more often. Bonfire, however, will hit a bit harder.

Passive A: Death Blow / Swift Sparrow / Sturdy Impact

  • Helps Matthew hit his target as hard as possible.

  • Death Blow "variants" like Swift Sparrow and Sturdy Impact that offer additional effects also work quite well.

Passive B: Chill Def

  • Though a bit redundant with the "Dagger 6" effect on Spy's Dagger, Chill Def is the best Chill that Matthew can run to "mark" an enemy, providing him with 14 additional damage on that target.

Passive C: Even Atk Wave / Odd Atk Wave 

  • Because his damage scales with enemy debuffs rather than his own buffs like Bladetomes, he can add an extra Atk Wave skill to further the damage he deals.

  • Instead, any team support skill such as a Drive can be run as desired.

Sacred Seal: Chill Atk

  • A second "marker" for Matthew, and the most likely Chill to hit the same unit targeted by Chill Def.

Introduction

Matthew is a dagger unit defined by his high Speed and decent Defense. Statwise he is quite comparable to Saizo, but at the end of the day his stats are mainly inferior. Matthew receives higher HP and Resistance, two stats he doesn't really need, in return for decreased Attack and Defense stats, both of which are quite critical. Matthew actually possesses one of the lowest Attack stats in the game, making it exceedingly difficult for him to actually take on his enemies alone.

Granted in the 3.7.0 update, Matthew received a new weapon, Spy's Dagger. In addition to the base Rogue Dagger property, it gives him a "reverse Bladetome" effect, granting him bonus damage equal to the total debuffs on his opponent, in the same vein as Gunnthrá's Blizzard tome. Though certainly a very welcome tool to help make up for Matthew's poor Attack, and a huge boon overall, it does not however suddenly skyrocket Matthew to the top. As useful as the weapon is, mages with simply-better statlines wielding a Bladetome, as well as other better-statline dagger units using the Broadleaf Fan (an inheritable dagger with the same "reverse Bladetome" effect), will still all usually outperform Matthew. In this respect, Matthew is very comparable to Odin, another low-Attack unique with a Prf Bladetome skill. However, Odin's unique tome also grants him an easy to utilize and generally-superior support component than Spy's Dagger, and typically magical damage will be superior to physical damage on such a "Bladetome" effect.

Those looking for something different can certainly find a fairly fun if perhaps gimmicky unit in Matthew, but those looking for a top contender will probably be best looking elsewhere. As said himself in-game, Matthew is "really more of a behind-the-scenes kind of guy", truthfully not really designed for the spotlight, best used as a compliment to other units.

Strengths

Solid Speed and Defense

Though far from the fastest in the game, his decent Speed can be helpful for escaping doubles. Doubling slower enemies also aids his ability to charge his own Special procs. In conjunction with his Speed, sluggish physical attackers can have trouble taking him down, especially after further boosts to his bulk from Spy's Dagger.

Spy's Dagger

Matthew's Prf weapon is quite powerful, offering not only a Defense buff effect for both himself and his team, but also a "reverse Bladetome" effect, granting damage that scales with the number of debuffs on his opponent. These types of skills can achieve fairly high potential in conjunction with some favoritism, especially if one can manage to stack basic stat debuffs alongside panic debuffs, and pad this further with some standard stat buffs for Matthew himself.

Weaknesses

Terrifyingly Low Attack

Matthew's Attack is nearly unusable. Without an Attack boon, Matthew's visible Attack stat won't even reach 40 without additional Attack-boosting skills or Sacred Seals. Realistically Spy's Dagger is more of a band-aid for this issue than a true solution, as even when attacking an enemy with multiple debuffs, his damage output will still really only end up being about as good as that of a better offensive unit without any boosts—a far cry from what one would hope given the extensive setup necessary.

Questionable Resistance

Matthew's total magical bulk tends to rarely venture higher than the "Maybe he can survive one hit?" range, and is fairly unreliable. This lowers even further if Matthew happens across a Raven tome unit.

Outclassed in most builds

Compared to Saizo, Matthew loses 4 Attack and 3 Defense in return for 5 HP and 2 Resistance. Saizo will perform any non-Spy's Dagger set Matthew could hope to think of better, only being slightly more susceptible to mages (which Matthew can't even tank confidently anyway).

For offensive builds, other infantry dagger units like Gaius, Saizo, Kaze, Legault, and even Performing Olivia all have strictly better offensive spreads. Though Spy's Dagger does have high potential, securing debuffs on enemies can be much harder than simply putting buffs one's an actual Bladetome mage, and the aforementioned dagger units will all likely exceed Matthew at the same niche if given a Broadleaf Fan, an inheritable weapon with a similar "reverse Bladetome" effect.

Weapon Skills

Weapons SP Rng. Mt.
Iron DaggerAfter combat, inflicts Def/Res-3 on foe through its next action.
Learns by default at 2 ★
Dagger users only.
50 2 3
Steel DaggerAfter combat, inflicts Def/Res-3 on foe through its next action.
Learns by default at 3 ★
Unlocks at 2 ★
Dagger users only.
100 2 5
Rogue DaggerAfter combat, inflicts Def/Res-3 on foe through its next action. Grants unit Def/Res+3 for 1 turn.
Learns by default at 4 ★
Unlocks at 3 ★
Dagger users only.
200 2 4
Rogue Dagger+After combat, if unit attacked, inflicts Def/Res-5 on foe through its next action. Grants unit Def/Res+5 for 1 turn.
Unlocks at 5 ★
Dagger users only.
300 2 7
Spy's DaggerAfter combat, if unit attacked, grants Def/Res+6 to unit and allies within 2 spaces of unit for 1 turn. Effect:【Dagger 6】   【Dagger 6】 After combat, if unit attacked, inflicts Def/Res-6 on target and foes within 2 spaces of target through their next actions.
Unlocks at 5 ★
Non-Inheritable skill.
400 2 14
Weapon Evolution
Weapon Upgrades
Weapon Upgrades

Support Skills

Support Skills Rng. SP
Reciprocal AidSwap HP with adjacent ally (neither unit can go above their max HP).
Learns by default at 4 ★
1 150

Passive Skills

Passive Skills SP Slot
Poison Strike 1Inflicts 4 damage to foe after any combat this unit initiates.
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
Unlocks at 3 ★
60
B
Poison Strike 2Inflicts 7 damage to foe after any combat this unit initiates.
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
Unlocks at 4 ★
120
B
Poison Strike 3Inflicts 10 damage to foe after any combat this unit initiates.
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
Unlocks at 5 ★
240
B
Hone Spd 1Grants adjacent allies Spd+2 through their next actions at the start of each turn.
Inheritable by all units.
Unlocks at 2 ★
50
C
Hone Spd 2Grants adjacent allies Spd+3 through their next actions at the start of each turn.
Inheritable by all units.
Unlocks at 2 ★
100
C
Hone Spd 3Grants adjacent allies Spd+4 through their next actions at the start of each turn.
Inheritable by all units.
Unlocks at 4 ★
200
C

Other Info

Origin
Fire Emblem: The Blazing Blade

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