09/11 SEA Patch notes
[Operation] Main Stream EP.9 (ACT.1-2) Unlocked!
[Side Story] Bottom of the Shade is back! Complete the hard mode to get Dash Unit Data!
[Challenge] New Challenge: Old Administration Training Method Unlocked!
[Attendance] Qliphoth Game Celebration Punch In! (2022-11-09~2022-11-29)
[Counter Pass] New Counter Pass Mission and Reward: Clareth El Arcadena!
[Recruit] New Classified Recruitment—Garguantia Maria Antonov Probability UP! Contract Mission Unlocked!
[Recruit] New Operator Recruitment—Replacer Rook Probability UP!
[Recruit] Operator Replacer King & Mansion Master Probability UP!
[Shop] Added #8 Activity Pledge Package. Complete mission to get Quartz and SSR furniture!
[Shop] Added Garguantia Maria Antonov Update Celebration Classified Recruitment Package Vol. 1, 2 &3.
[Shop] Added Talent Development Package, Assorted Binary Special Package & Sc. Gear Set Option Selection Package I/II.
[BOSS] New Raid Season Starts! (2022-11-09~2022-12-07)
The new episode is here, so all lore lovers should be really excited now!
New character - Awakened Maria
Awakened Maria is quite unique in the way that her portals allow allies to be deployed up to 60% of the map without damaging the ship. Looking into her base stats, she does have a very high CRIT, nearly maxing out the crit chance, combined with her passive 100% Crit DMG increase allows her to deal a lot of damage for a ranger.
Let's talk about her balance change history. After going through several buffs and some nerfs, she is still underperforming, unfortunately. On her release, she seemed pretty fun with her ability to teleport enemy frontlines straight back to their base, but her damage was negligible and she would just randomly die after using her 20% HP backstep.
However, for some reason, they replaced her teleport with HP% dmg which took away a very important gimmick of hers, making her just an average ranger with 6-cost. Later on, they tried increasing her animation speed and portal buff (Self CDMG 10-50% -> 20-100%, Allies DEF+25% -> DMG RDC + 10%) but it didn't change much.
For the latest changes, the portal self-buff from 20% CDMG per ally became just straight up 100% increased CDMG for her, special skill stun duration was increased to 8s with the restriction removed, and her passive backstep changed from 20% to 70%, 40%. This didn't improve her survivability too much since she's very vulnerable after backstepping unlike other characters with backstep. Now, she can actually deal damage comparable to other Awakened Rangers, and most importantly her special skill now has a significant impact - stunning ALL units hit by 8s and blocking their heals, but her biggest downside however is still the high cost.
Still, the portals have quite a few flaws. First of all, other Awakened employees and Towers can't use it. Furthermore, in PVE where most of the players use Auto-Battle, your squishy backliners will suddenly get teleported to the enemy frontline where they will be slaughtered. Sure, you can play her on manual, but this will get annoying really fast.
As for PVP, Awakened Maria created a new type of rush team that bypasses the enemy frontline and goes straight for the ship, but this team, while being pretty strong, is countered by some other meta teams.
Should you pull her?
No. Even after all those buffs, she is still not good - if they maybe had lowered her cost to 5, she would be S or SS tier, but at 6 cost, she is just unusable.
Check her profile here.
New Battle Pass - Clareth El Arcadena
Clareth is a Striker that has great base stats that allow him to become one of the highest damage-dealing 4-cost Strikers, but sadly he is selfish and doesn't help the team in any way. On top of that despite his high defensive stats, he dies pretty easily because he has no defensive mechanism in his kit. Sadly, other 4-cost Strikers - like Rearm Esterosa and Orca - outclass him by miles.
Should you buy the BP?
It's always worth buying!