Table of Contents

Tier Rating

Analysis by Adonyx
Saber - Driven Mercenary

5

Obtainable as a 5 only

Hero Stats

Max Avg Total Stats at Lvl 40
158
HP 40
ATK 31
SPD 33
DEF 32
RES 22

Stat Variations

Level 1 Stat Variation
5★
HP ATK SPD DEF RES
Low 17 6 8 7 4
Middle 18 7 9 8 5
High 19 8 10 9 6

Level 40 Stat Variations
5★
HP ATK SPD DEF RES
Low 36 28 30 29 19
Middle 40 31 33 32 22
High 43 34 36 35 25

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

Boons

  • +ATK: Saber’s base 31 Attack is relatively unimpressive; while he can deal a surprising amount of damage thanks to his Golden Dagger, a boon here will still be very helpful.

  • +SPD: Boosting Saber’s Speed is a strong option as he can potentially boost it high enough to avoid most doubles (mainly if Golden Dagger’s effect is active) as well as naturally double a good number of opponents.

Neutral

  • DEF: Saber has decent physical bulk, so lowering his Defense is not ideal. However, boosting his Defense isn’t as important as boosting his offensive stats, so it’s best kept neutral if possible.

  • HP: A -HP bane is not ideal for Saber due to being a superbane (-4 to the stat) as well as impacting both his physical and magical bulk; this is an important consideration for a defensive build as he should be able to handle a wide variety of threats.

Banes

  • -RES: Resistance is Saber’s lowest stat, and is the clear candidate for a bane. Lowering Saber’s magical bulk isn’t ideal, particularly for a defensive build, but it impacts his effectiveness the least since it’s already his lowest stat. Ultimately there isn’t a massive difference between -RES, -HP, and -DEF since any of them will have an impact on Saber’s defensive capabilities.

Skill Sets

Unlimited Blade Works (Defensive Nuke)

Recommended
Golden Dagger (+Eff) A Fierce Breath
Alternate: Fury 3
Reposition B Special Spiral 3
Blue Flame
Alternate: Bonfire
C Atk Smoke 3
SP2,055SQuick Riposte 3

Show Explanation/Analysis
  • Preferred IV: +ATK or +SPD / -RES
  • Weapon: Golden Dagger (+Eff)
  • Assist: Reposition
  • Special: Blue Flame / Bonfire / Luna
  • Passive A: Fierce Breath / Fort Def/Res / Atk/Spd Bond / Fury
  • Passive B: Special Spiral
  • Passive C: Atk Smoke / Flexible
  • Sacred Seal: Quick Riposte / Quickened Pulse / Atk/Def Bond / Darting Stance

Saber’s unique weapon, Golden Dagger, provides almost everything Saber needed to have more of an impact. The stat boosts give a much needed increase to his balanced stats, resulting in him having solid stats across the board. Having access to Distant Counter within the weapon allows Saber to utilize other A skills for more flexibility. The biggest consideration is the conditional prerequisite: it only functions when Saber’s Special is active at the start of combat. Special Spiral has fantastic synergy with this trait, as it will fully recharge Saber’s Special after every combat as long as it’s a 3 cooldown Special (reduced to 2 due to the -1 cooldown function of Golden Dagger). Note that a significant downside of this build is that it’s not fully functional for the very first combat due to Saber not starting with a fully charged Special. Because of this, Saber is at his best when in a team that can provide Infantry Pulse support (or Ostia’s Pulse from Legendary Hector) to charge his Special immediately.

Blue Flame is Saber’s best bet for his Special due to it generally providing the most consistent and highest damage (maintaining the adjacency requirement isn’t particularly hard for an Enemy Phase oriented build like this one). However, Blue Flame is extremely high investment, so Bonfire and Luna are both acceptable alternatives - note that it’s possible for Bonfire and Luna to match Blue Flame’s damage if Saber’s Defense is buffed to at least 50 or if his enemy has at least 50 Defense, respectively.

Fierce Breath is a great choice for Saber’s A skill primarily due to the increased Special charge; this allows him to activate his Special on his first counterattack against a melee opponent even if Golden Dagger isn’t active, and also allows him to activate his Special twice if he gets doubled. The Attack boost from Fierce Breath is very helpful for boosting Saber’s damage output, but it can easily be swapped out for Steady/Warding Breath without hampering Saber’s performance too much. Fort Def/Res is an incredibly potent boost to Saber’s defenses that can help him survive multiple combats. Any Bond skill such as Atk/Spd Bond will work great, particularly if using Blue Flame as Saber will want adjacency regardless. Finally, Fury is acceptable as a budget option, but it will severely hamper Saber’s sustain in combat; he will likely not be able to handle more than one or two combats with it.

For Seals, Quick Riposte is extremely useful as Saber’s Speed isn’t quite high enough to ensure doubles on super speedy opponents. However, if this is not a concern (such as if Saber has access to strong buff support), then it can be replaced with either Atk/Def Bond to simultaneously improve Saber’s damage output and physical bulk, or Darting Stance to somewhat replicate Quick Riposte’s effect by helping Saber double more opponents, with the additional effect of making it much tougher for him to be naturally doubled. Quickened Pulse may be necessary if only one source of Infantry Pulse or Ostia’s Pulse is available, as getting Saber to start with his Special already charged is extremely useful.

Dread Fighter (Offensive Generalist)

Golden Dagger (+Eff) A Atk/Spd Solo 3
Alternate: Fury 3
Reposition B Wrath 3
Moonbow C Threaten Def 3
SP1,545SQuickened Pulse

Show Explanation/Analysis
  • Preferred IVs: +ATK or +SPD / -RES or -HP
  • Weapon: Golden Dagger (+Eff)
  • Assist: Reposition / Ardent Sacrifice / Reciprocal Aid
  • Special: Moonbow
  • Passive A: Atk/Spd Solo / Life and Death / Fury / Brazen Atk/Spd
  • Passive B: Wrath
  • Passive C: Threaten Def / Flexible
  • Sacred Seal: Quickened Pulse / Brazen Atk/Res / Atk/Def Bond / Speed +3

Thanks to the big stat boost granted by Golden Dagger’s effect, Saber can now utilize an offensive build fairly effectively. The key to this build is combining the Quickened Pulse Seal and Wrath with a low cooldown Special, Moonbow, in order to keep Saber’s Special active for as long as possible in order to maintain Golden Dagger’s effect.

Atk/Spd Solo is easily one of the best offensive A skills due to giving one of the largest raw stat boosts with no downsides aside from an easy to meet condition. If unavailable, then either Life and Death or Fury are both good choices; the downsides to both Life and Death and Fury can potentially work to Saber’s advantage, as the reduced bulk from Life and Death or post-combat recoil damage from Fury can both help Saber enter Wrath’s HP threshold. Finally, Brazen Atk/Spd is an aggressive option as it’s best utilized alongside either Ardent Sacrifice or Reciprocal Aid in order to manually drop Saber’s HP into Wrath’s HP threshold.

Wrath is a vitally important part of this build, as the -1 Special cooldown each turn while within the HP threshold is what allows Saber to easily recharge his Special without having to enter combat without Golden Dagger’s effect active. The extra damage also helps boost Saber’s damage output considerably. Note that because Wrath’s Special cooldown effect occurs at the start of each player turn, Saber is relatively safe from the effects of Guard and Special Fighter. However, he is also limited in that he likely won’t have his Special charged after the first combat each turn, severely limiting his ability to take on multiple opponents.

For Seals, Quickened Pulse is extremely important in order to ensure that Saber can start out with his Special charged. It can potentially be unneeded if Saber has access to Infantry Pulse/Ostia’s Pulse support (from Legendary Hector); in this case, it can be replaced by a different offensive Seal like Brazen Atk/Res (particularly useful if also running Brazen Atk/Spd as Saber’s A skill along with Ardent Sacrifice/Reciprocal Aid), Atk/Def Bond (make sure not to run this if also using Atk/Spd Solo since they have mutually exclusive activation conditions), or Speed +3.

Calm Mercenary (Defensive Tank)

Golden Dagger (+Eff) A Fierce Breath
Alternate: Distant Def 3
Reposition B Shield Pulse 3
Aegis
Alternate: Pavise
C Atk Smoke 3
SP1,485SQuick Riposte 3

Show Explanation/Analysis
  • Preferred IVs: +ATK or +SPD / -RES
  • Weapon: Golden Dagger (+Eff)
  • Assist: Reposition
  • Special: Aegis / Pavise
  • Passive A: Fierce Breath / Steady Breath / Warding Breath / Distant Def / Close Def
  • Passive B: Shield Pulse
  • Passive C: Atk Smoke / Flexible
  • Sacred Seal: Quick Riposte / Close Def / Distant Def

Golden Dagger’s refined effect has excellent synergy with Saber’s native Shield Pulse skill, as it allows him to start with his Special immediately charged. The main concerns with this setup are having to choose between Aegis/Pavise, as well as the relatively low damage output without an offensive Special. Saber’s lowered damage output can result in leaving many opponents alive after combat, leaving him vulnerable (Wings of Mercy is particularly troublesome).

Choosing between Aegis and Pavise is entirely up to player preference; picking one or the other will result in Saber being highly effective at mitigating damage from the chosen option, while the one not chosen will be deadlier in comparison.

Fierce Breath is excellent since it allows Saber to immediately recharge his Special after a single counterattack so that he can reactivate it if he gets doubled. This effect can also be accomplished with Steady/Warding Breath, but Fierce Breath is notably better due to the extra +4 Attack helping Saber’s relatively low damage output. If none of these are available, then either Distant Def or Close Def can work. Note that because Aegis and Pavise work multiplicatively, increasing Saber’s defenses will only be half as effective whenever Aegis/Pavise activate. This means that Distant Def is more efficient when paired with Pavise and Close Def is more efficient when paired with Aegis. However, this doesn’t mean that it’s not worth stacking defenses; Saber can handily shut down ranged threats with both Aegis and Distant Def, or melee threats with both Pavise and Close Def.

For Seals, Quick Riposte helps considerably with Saber’s low damage output as well as helping him immediately recharge his Special after activating it on an enemy attack in order to maintain Golden Dagger’s effect. Alternatively, either Close Def or Distant Def are acceptable choices for Seals.

Introduction

For quite a while, Saber was a rather unimpressive unit due to his balanced statline and lack of any standout capabilities. However, now they he has a new unique weapon, Golden Dagger, he can now be quite effective thanks to the combination of stat boosts and built-in Distant Counter. The charged Special requirement of Golden Dagger’s effect can be fulfilled via skills like Special Spiral and Wrath, which have the additional benefit of circumventing Guard and Special Fighter due to activating after combat.

Despite Saber’s strong performance with Golden Dagger active, his biggest problem is initially obtaining and then maintaining the effect. Special Spiral builds have no way of starting out with a charged Special outside of Infantry Pulse/Ostia’s Pulse support from the team. Wrath builds don’t necessarily require team support, but struggles to be as consistent as other sword users like Ayra or Karla due to Saber’s effectiveness dropping quite a bit whenever his Special isn’t charged at the start of combat; this means that he’s generally only effective for one combat per turn with a Wrath setup.

However, Saber’s performance with Golden Dagger active is good enough that it mostly outweighs the negatives of maintaining it. One major point about Saber is that his playstyle is rather distinct and unique compared to most other sword infantry, particularly because of his good bulk. Overall, Saber is a fantastic addition to most teams, particularly if those teams are capable of giving him the support he needs to shine.

Strengths

Golden Dagger

Refining Saber’s unique weapon results in an incredibly potent version of a Slaying Edge; not only does it provide a massive boost to Saber’s stats, but it also provides built-in Distant Counter, allowing Saber to combine other A skills with Distant Counter. The charged Special requirement can be a bit dicey to play around, but can be circumvented fairly easily with the right skills.

Decent Bulk

Saber has good bulk - 72 physical and 62 magical. This gets even better once accounting for his Golden Dagger’s effect of boosting all his stats, allowing him to function as a decent tank or simply have good survivability.

Infantry

As an infantry unit, Saber can benefit from infantry-exclusive support skills like Infantry Pulse and Infantry Rush. Infantry Pulse can be particularly important for Saber due to his reliance on having his Special charged as a result of Golden Dagger’s effect.

Weaknesses

Requires Heavy Investment

While Saber can manage just fine with a budget setup, he really shines once he’s given premium skills like Special Spiral, Fierce Breath, or Wrath. This can make it rather difficult for Saber to shine if these skills aren’t readily available.

Outclassed

While Saber’s Golden Dagger has a very powerful effect once refined, he is still arguably outclassed by fellow sword user Owain, Ayra, and Karla. While Saber’s stats are stronger than Owain’s when his Golden Dagger effect is active, Owain has the benefit of not being constrained by the necessity of maintaining a charged Special, resulting in him having significantly more versatility. Saber can mimic Ayra and Karla’s playstyle with a Wrath build, but he suffers both from much lower consistency as well as lower overall damage output.

Team Options

  • Buffers: Saber’s balanced statline allows him to greatly benefit from buff support to all of his stats from units like Brave Lucina, Delthea, Marth, and Helbindi.

  • Debuffers: Debilitating Saber’s opponents enhances his combat performance similarly to buffing him directly, making units like Lute, Saias, Spring Catria, and Soren good teammates.

  • Refreshers: While Saber is generally best suited to an Enemy Phase setup, he can still greatly benefit from Refresher support from units like New Year Azura, Performing Azura, and Bridal Ninian.

  • Strong Greens: Saber can sometimes struggle against strong blue threats, so strong green allies like Myrrh, Fallen Robin (M), Hector, and Kana (F) can help deal with them.

    • Legendary Hector is a particularly strong ally due to providing Ostia’s Pulse support in addition to easily handling blue threats.

  • Infantry Pulse: Due to Saber’s reliance on keeping his Special charged, allies with Infantry Pulse like Dorcas, Nowi, Fae, Bartre, and Lukas can greatly enhance his initial combat.

Counters

  • Strong Blues: Saber is still susceptible to the color triangle despite his strengths, making units like Reinhardt, Legendary Tiki (Young), and Brave Hector strong counters.

  • Witchy Wand: Guard and Special Fighter aren’t particularly effective at shutting down Saber’s ability to recharge his own Specials due to him having access to skills like Special Spiral and Wrath that can recharge them outside of combat, but healers with Witchy Wand like Halloween Mia, Mirabelle, and Mikoto can completely shut Saber down due to also stopping Special Spiral and Wrath.

  • Heavy Nukes: While Saber can get his Speed pretty high thanks to his Golden Dagger, he struggles to handle enemies that can double regardless of Speed like Ephraim, Halloween Niles, Legendary Ephraim, and Effie. (Saber could use Null Followup to prevent this, but this would severely hamper his effectiveness outside of lots of team support)

  • Debuffs: Saber’s relatively low Resistance makes him an easy target for dedicated debuffers like Saias, Lute, Katarina, Arvis, and Julius.

Weapon Skills

Weapons SP Rng. Mt.
Iron Sword
Only Inheritable by Sword Units.
50 1 6
Steel Sword
Only Inheritable by Sword Units.
100 1 8
Slaying EdgeAccelerates Special trigger (cooldown count-1).
Only Inheritable by Sword Units.
200 1 10
Slaying Edge+Accelerates Special trigger (cooldown count -1).
Learns by default at 5 ★
Only Inheritable by Sword Units.
300 1 14
Golden DaggerAccelerates Special trigger (cooldown count-1).
Non-Inheritable skill.
400 1 16
Weapon Evolution
Weapon Upgrades
Weapon Upgrades

Special Skills

Special Skills SP Turns
Holy VestmentsReduces damage inflicted by attacks from foes 2 spaces away by 30%.
Restricted to melee units.
100 3
AegisReduces damage inflicted by attacks from foes 2 spaces away by 50%.
Learns by default at 5 ★
Restricted to melee units.
200 3

Passive Skills

Passive Skills SP Slot
HP +3Grants +3 to max HP.
Inheritable by all units.
40
A
HP/Spd 1Grants HP+3, Spd+1.
Inheritable by all units.
100
A
HP/Spd 2Grants HP+4, Spd +2.
Unlocks at 5 ★
Inheritable by all units.
200
A
Shield Pulse 1If unit's Special triggers based on a foe's attack, Special cooldown count-1 at start of turn 1.
Melee, Infantry, and Armored Only
60
B
Shield Pulse 2If unit's Special triggers based on a foe's attack, Special cooldown count-1 at start of turn 1. Unit takes 5 less damage when Special triggers.
Melee, Infantry, and Armored Only
120
B
Shield Pulse 3If unit's Special triggers based on a foe's attack, Special cooldown count -2 at start of turn 1. Unit takes 5 less damage when Special triggers.
Unlocks at 5 ★
Melee, Infantry, and Armored Only
240
B

Other Info

Origin
Fire Emblem Echoes

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