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Zelgius

Tier Rating
Analysis by Naz
Zelgius - Jet-Black General

5

Obtainable as a 5 only
Hero Stats
Max Avg Total Stats at Lvl 40
174
HP 46
ATK 36
SPD 33
DEF 38
RES 21
Stat Variations
Level 1 Stat Variation
5★
HP ATK SPD DEF RES
Low 21 9 6 9 5
Middle 22 10 7 10 6
High 23 11 8 11 7

Level 40 Stat Variations
5★
HP ATK SPD DEF RES
Low 43 33 30 35 18
Middle 46 36 33 38 21
High 49 39 36 41 24
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: A boon in Attack is without a doubt the best boon that Zelgius can receive, as it increases his already exceptional Attack stat even further. This is especially prevalent when utilizing Bold Fighter.

  • +SPD: Speed is another suitable boon for Zelgius even when utilizing skills that guarantee follow-up attacks such as Bold Fighter and Vengeful Fighter. The additional Speed can greatly reduce that amount of damage Zelgius takes by preventing a wider range of follow-up attacks.

Neutral

  • DEF: Although a boon in Defense can further boost Zelgius’ already outstanding ability as a physical tank, it is of lower priority when compared to Attack and Speed and can be left at a neutral value.

  • HP: Similarly, Zelgius prefers to keep his HP neutral in order to keep his overall bulk intact as well as effectively utilize the skill Panic Ploy.

Banes

  • -RES: Resistance is Zelgius’ weakest stat and the best bane that he can receive as further dropping it hardly affects his overall performance.
Skill Sets
Eclipse (Mixed Phase Duelist)
Recommended
Alondite A Steady Breath
Alternate: Fierce Stance 3
Swap B Bold Fighter 3
Black Luna C Armor March 3
Alternate: Panic Ploy 3
SP1,805SQuickened Pulse

Show Explanation/Analysis
  • Preferred IV: +ATK or +SPD / -RES

  • Weapon: Alondite

  • Assist: Swap / Pivot

  • Special: Black Luna

  • Passive A: Steady Breath / Warding Breath / Fierce Stance

  • Passive B: Bold Fighter

  • Passive C: Armor March / Panic Ploy / Flexible

  • Sacred Seal: Quickened Pulse / Quick Riposte

This set aims to take advantage of Zelgius’ status as an armored unit as well as Alondite’s built-in Distant Counter in order to have Zelgius cover many different bases at once. For his nature, a boon in Attack easily makes for the best choice as it significantly increases his damage output during both Player and Enemy Phase. A boon in Speed is also serviceable, as it can decrease the amount of damage Zelgius takes by allowing him to avoid follow-up attacks more easily.

Steady Breath is a phenomenal Enemy Phase skill and a core aspect of this set. Not only does it allow Zelgius to activate Black Luna more frequently, it also gives him a boost to his physical bulk when initiated on. Warding Breath is also suitable, as it is very similar to Steady Breath but provides a boost in Resistance rather than Defense. If neither are available, Zelgius’ native Fierce Stance makes for a good budget alternative by providing a strong boost to his Attack when initiated on.

Bold Fighter is essential in giving Zelgius a powerful Player Phase presence. Not only does it guarantee his follow-up attack on initiation, the Special cooldown acceleration it provides allows Zelgius to potentially activate Black Luna every single round of combat. Zelgius’ excellent Attack coupled with the sheer power of Black Luna allow him to cut through just about any opponent regardless of who initiates.

Since armored units are naturally restricted to one-movement, it can sometimes be tricky to get Zelgius in a position where he can initiate on his opponent. It is highly recommended that he or a teammate run the skill Armor March so that he has the movement to effectively utilize Bold Fighter. Thanks to his high HP, Panic Ploy also makes for a great choice of C skill by providing a massive advantage over teams that like to use Hone/Fortify buffs. Otherwise, the C slot can be replaced as needed to suit the team.

Finally, both the Quickened Pulse and Quick Riposte Sacred Seals are key in maximizing Zelgius’ Enemy Phase potential. Quickened Pulse brings the initial cooldown of Black Luna down to 2. When combined with Steady/Warding Breath, he will activate Black Luna on his very first counterattack. This allows Zelgius to take out opponents in a single hit before they have the chance to double him. In particular, this can be the deciding factor in his matchup against Ayra and Valentine Hector. With Bold Fighter, this combination also allows him to activate Black Luna during his first round of combat against ranged units that are unable to retaliate. Quick Riposte is a more consistent choice that allows Zelgius to activate Black Luna every round of combat when initiated on at the cost of being more susceptible to follow-up attacks.

The Bold and the Brave (Quad Attack)
Brave Sword+ A Death Blow 3
Swap B Bold Fighter 3
Black Luna C Armor March 3
Alternate: Panic Ploy 3
SP2,195SQuickened Pulse

Show Explanation/Analysis
  • Preferred IV: +ATK / -SPD or -RES

  • Weapon: Brave Sword+

  • Assist: Swap / Pivot

  • Special: Black Luna

  • Passive A: Death Blow / Sturdy Blow

  • Passive B: Bold Fighter

  • Passive C: Armor March / Flexible

  • Sacred Seal: Quickened Pulse / Armored Boots / Attack +3

This build trades the ability to retaliate against ranged units for the sheer power of a Brave Sword. With this purely offensive set, Attack is once again the best boon that Zelgius can receive in order to maximize his damage output. For his main skills, Death Blow further fits this playstyle perfectly by providing Zelgius with a powerful +6 Attack on initiation. At the cost of a slightly weaker Attack boost, Sturdy Blow makes for another great option by also giving Zelgius a solid boost to his Defense.

The crux of this build is running Bold Fighter together with the Quickened Pulse Sacred Seal. In addition to attacking four times, this combination allows Zelgius to potentially activate Black Luna twice in a single round of combat. While this may be overkill a vast majority of the time, it swings highly disadvantageous matchups in Zelgius’ favor such as Nowi, Female Corrin, and Fallen Hardin.

Since this set puts heavy emphasis on Player Phase combat, Armor March is crucial in order to give Zelgius the movement boost he needs to consistently initiate on his opponents. If unavailable, Armored Boots make for an acceptable choice of Sacred Seal in patching up his low movement. Outside of that, Attack +3 is a good choice in maximizing Zelgius’ raw damage output.

One will Die (Enemy Phase Focus)
Alondite A Atk/Spd Bond 3
Alternate: Fierce Stance 3
Swap B Vengeful Fighter 3
Black Luna C Panic Ploy 3
SP1,370SClose Def 3

Show Explanation/Analysis
  • Preferred IV: +ATK or +SPD or +DEF / -RES
  • Weapon: Alondite

  • Assist: Swap / Pivot

  • Special: Black Luna / Aether

  • Passive A: Atk/Spd Bond / Atk/Def Bond / Fierce Stance

  • Passive B: Vengeful Fighter

  • Passive C: Panic Ploy / Atk Smoke / Def Smoke / Ward Armor / Flexible

  • Sacred Seal: Close Def / Distant Def

This build focuses solely on Zelgius’ combat in the Enemy Phase. In addition to Attack and Speed, Defense also makes for a suitable choice of boon in order to strengthen Zelgius’ physical bulk. For his Special, one can choose to run Aether rather than Black Luna. Although this comes at the cost of both a longer cooldown and a significant takeaway from his overall damage output, Aether can increase Zelgius’ overall survivability through its healing aspect.

Not only does Vengeful Fighter guarantee Zelgius’ follow-up attack in the Enemy Phase, it also has the additional benefit of Special cooldown acceleration, allowing him to potentially activate Black Luna every single round of combat. This lets Zelgius forego Breath skills in favor of more stat boost-oriented A skills. Since this playstyle is centered around Enemy Phase combat, Zelgius will often be close-knit with his teammates. As such, both Atk/Spd Bond and Atk/Def Bond make for effective choices that provide Zelgius with significant boosts to both his offensive and defensive stats. If unavailable, Zelgius’ native Fierce Stance remains a solid budget alternative by providing a strong boost to his Attack when initiated on.

Once again, Panic Ploy makes for a fantastic choice of C skills due to the massive advantage it provides against opponents that use Hone/Fortify buffs. Smoke kills such as Atk Smoke and Def Smoke are also great choices. Atk Smoke makes Zelgius a better overall tank by reducing the damage of opponents around him after combat while Def Smoke boosts own damage against the affected targets. A good team-synergistic option is Ward Armor, as it allows Zelgius to be a benefactor on an armor-centric team. Last but not least, both the Close Def and Distant Def Sacred Seals compliment this Enemy Phase-oriented playstyle perfectly by reducing damage taken from physical and ranged opponents respectively when initiated on.

Introduction

The arrival of Zelgius raised the bar for what it means to be an offensive powerhouse. Not only is his statline very well distributed, Zelgius’ status as an armored unit grants him access to powerful skills such as Bold Fighter and Vengeful Fighter along with armor-exclusive buffs. While this alone makes Zelgius a force to be reckoned with, what puts him over the top in both power and versatility are his unique, uninheritable skills.

Alondite grants Zelgius the coveted ability to retaliate against ranged units without the need to sacrifice his A slot, opening the door to powerful combination such as Distant Counter + Breath skills. Meanwhile, Black Luna allows Zelgius to leave a massive dent in if not outright kill even the bulkiest of opponents by cutting 80% of their Defense upon activation. If that wasn’t enough, Zelgius also has a unique B skill in Warp Powder. This allows him to traverse across the map more easily despite his status as an armored unit limiting his movement.

Statwise, Zelgius’ immense 174 BST favors Attack and Defense. This allows Zelgius to dish out massive damage with his raw Attack alone while being an incredible physical tank. In addition, his Speed is nothing to scoff at either. At a base value of 33, Zelgius can avoid most follow-up attacks from mid-high tier Speed opponents, greatly reducing the amount of damage he takes. His greatest weaknesses stem from his poor Resistance and low movement. While the latter can be circumvented with team support such as Armor March, Zelgius will find himself taking heavy damage from magic-based weapons.

Overall, Zelgius is a top tier unit with incredible prowess both offensively and defensively. He performs well with a variety of builds and can be an unstoppable juggernaut on almost any team.

Strengths

Alondite

Having built-in Distant Counter, Alondite grants Zelgius massive coverage by allowing him to retaliate against ranged units as well as opening his A slot for powerful combinations such as Distant Counter + Steady Breath.

Black Luna

40 Defense? More like 8 Defense. Zelgius’ devastating unique Special cuts through even the bulkiest of units by resolving combat as if his opponent lost 80% of their Defense upon its activation.

Fantastic Attack

At a base value of 36, Zelgius hits hard with his raw Attack alone. This consistently grants him high damage output in both Player and Enemy Phase.

Incredible Physical Bulk

With his physical bulk standing tall at a base value of 84, Zelgius performs exceptionally well as a physical tank.

Armored Unit

Being an armored unit comes with several benefits. These include having a much higher BST compared to other class types, access to class-exclusive skills such as Bold Fighter and Vengeful Fighter, and the ability to receive powerful buffs from armored teammates such as Hone Armor and Ward Armor.

Weaknesses

Low Resistance

Despite his overall magical bulk being relatively high at 67, Zelius will still take significant damage from Resistance-targeting Attacks. This can make him struggle against magical damage dealing opponents who often take him out in only two hits.

Vulnerable to effective damage

As an armored unit, Zelgius will receive 1.5x damage from armor-effective weapons. In particular, Heavy Spear and Thani are especially problematic for Zelgius, as he has the triangle disadvantage against them.

Poor Mobility

Zelgius’ class type limits his movement to only one tile. This makes him reliant on Assist Skills such as Pivot or team support through the use of Armor March to be able to quickly move across the map.

Team Options

Zelgius greatly appreciates armored teammates, as they are able to provide him with powerful class-exclusive buffs such as Hone Armor and Armor March. Outside of armor-centric teams, Zelgius will appreciate any unit that can boost his mobility such as Refreshers and Guidance Fliers. Last but not least, Zelgius enjoys green allies that can cover his Weapon Triangle disadvantage.

  • Armors: Hector, Effie, Winter Chrom, Winter Tharja, Amelia, and Halloween Jakob are all great teammates that can provide Zelgius with powerful buffs such as Ward Armor and Armor March.

  • Refreshers: Olivia, Performing Inigo, Ninian, and Performing Azura are among many great choices that provide Zelgius with fantastic support through an extra turn, allowing him to move into more favorable positions.

  • Guidance Fliers: Tana, Elincia, Cordelia, New Year Azura, and generally any other flier can greatly improve Zelgius’ mobility through the use of the skill Guidance. New Year Azura also has the additional benefit of doubling as a Refresher.

  • Strong Greens: Dorcas, Halloween Henry, Nino, Fae, and Myrrh all perform well in checking both physical and magical greens that may pose a threat to Zelgius.

Counters

Due to his poor Resistance, Zelgius is especially vulnerable against magic damage dealing opponents. Physically bulky blue units can also pose a threat to Zelgius as they are able to mitigate his damage. This is especially prevalent when they are running the skill Guard in order to prevent him from activating his Specials. Finally, armor-effective weapons, namely Heavy Spear and Thani are problematic to Zelgius due to their damage multiplier.

  • Magical Damage: Mages such as Reinhardt, Linde, Ishtar, and Winter Tharja can do significant damage if not outright kill Zelgius. This also applies to dragons such as Nowi, Young Tiki, and Male Kana.

  • Physically Bulky Blues: Fallen Hardin, Effie, Winter Robin, Female Corrin, and Lukas can easily mitigate the amount of damage that Zelgius can do thanks to their high physical bulk and Weapon Triangle advantage. In addition, units that utilize the skill Guard can potentially wall him off completely by preventing him from activating his Special.

  • Effective Weapons: Due to his class type, Zelgius has a natural weakness to armor-effective weapons. Common users include Micaiah, Caeda, Clair, and Hana

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
Silver Sword
Only Inheritable by Sword Units.
200 1 11
AlonditeEnables counterattack regardless of distance if this unit is attacked.
Learns by default at 5 ★
Non-Inheritable skill.
400 1 16
Weapon Evolution
Weapon Upgrades
Weapon Upgrades
Special Skills
Special Skills SP Turns
New MoonResolve combat as if foe suffered Def/Res-30%
Learns by default at 5 ★
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
100 3
LunaResolve combat as if foe suffered Def/Res-50%
Unlocks at 5 ★
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
200 3
Black LunaResolve combat as if foe suffered Def/Res-80%. (Skill cannot be inherited.)
Unlocks at 5 ★
Non-Inheritable skill.
500 3
Passive Skills
Passive Skills SP Slot
Fierce Stance 1Grants Atk+2 during combat\nwhen this unit is attacked.
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
50
A
Fierce Stance 2Grants Atk+4 during combat\nwhen this unit is attacked.
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
100
A
Fierce Stance 3Grants Atk+6 during combat when this unit is attacked.
Unlocks at 5 ★
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
200
A
Warp PowderIf unit's HP ≥ 80%, unit can move adjacent to any ally within 2 spaces.
Unlocks at 5 ★
Non-Inheritable skill.
300
B
Panic Ploy 1At start of turn, bonuses become penalties on all foes in cardinal directions with HP 5 or more lower than unit through foe's next action.
Inheritable by all units.
60
C
Panic Ploy 2At start of turn, bonuses become penalties on all foes in cardinal directions with HP 3 or more lower than unit through foe's next action.
Inheritable by all units.
120
C
Panic Ploy 3At start of turn, bonuses become penalties on all foes in cardinal directions with HP 1 or more lower than unit through foe's next action.
Unlocks at 5 ★
Inheritable by all units.
240
C
Other Info
Origin
Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn

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