“Beach by the Blue Sea” Degas is Frost/Guard/Physical Attack Type Hero, the second Summer Festa Fatecore release: “Perhaps because Degas spent most of his time shrouded in armor, his skin began to burn quickly under the scorching sun. Still, he decided to make the most of this vacation, even as his pale skin turned bright red. It was time to get over his sense of guilt and move on with life.”
The first Fatecore release for Legendary Hero Degas
At the release of the Summer Festa event, we were given notice that one of the seven heroes scheduled to receive a new Summer theme Fatecore will be the legendary hero Degas. Already a favorite among the community due to his extravagant character design, many were excited to hear about his new Fatecore and the potential improvements it would bring to his kit.
His growing popularity as a frontline tank lead many to question if his Fatecore will allow him to be a viable replacement to the current top tier tanks Garff and Uloom. While his base skill set and stats already place him as a solid choice for those without a Garff or Uloom, let's review what his Fatecore will bring to the table to see if it will allow him to be a realistic replacement or still a strong alternative.
Fatecore base stat bonus
As you can see above, the stat bonus he receives from his Fatecore is significant. Although it is a very expensive and resource-hungry task to Fatecore enhance to level 30, the maximum potential to his defense and HP increases are solid for a tank-type unit. Degas already possesses one of the highest base defense stats in the game as well, second only to Uloom, so the increase in stats due to his Fatecore place him in league with fated defense-type heroes.
In addition to receiving stat bonuses through his Fatecore, you can also increase his base stats via Unleash Potential in the Hero Journal. Note that only stat increases apply to hero’s with a Fatecore equipped and not the skill enhancements, which I will touch on later.
New passive skill set from Summer Festa Fatecore
Let’s review “Beach by the Blue Sea” Degas’ unique skill set provided by his new Fatecore:
- Passive (Block 2) - While the base ability remains the same and the Dragon Knight Blessing all remains, we see the addition of Ice Shower (now Flop-Flop after recent patch update) and Summer’s Blessing. Similar to the other Summer Festa Fatecores, these two abilities act as a counter to any enemy that deals frost damage. In PVE content it provides an extra level of sustainment with the damage immunity and the added attack buff is a bonus for your damage dealers. In PVP content, where it really shines, it acts as a direct counter to Bathory’s skill set.
- Active 1 (Blue Aegis of Faith) - This has been increased to match the skill upgrade from his Unleashed Potential skill tree. At his max level this becomes a 50% increase to his max health vs 43% at his normal skill level.
- Active 2 (Cursed Blue Trident) - This skill has also been increased to match the upgrade from his Unleashed Potential. Damage increased from 142% to 178% from his normal skill level.
Flop-Flop provides unmatched crowd control
The additional passive bonus, now known as Flop-Flop, adds another form of crowd control to Degas by providing a ‘modification’ that prevents an enemies action for 3 turns. The Flop-Flopskill, formerly Ice Shower, now ‘modifies’ units into rubber ducks! Although it has a requirement of having a removable buff, this effect applies to all of Degas’ forms of attack including the basic attack and his active 2. Although his Active 2 already provides good crowd control by freezing, having a form of crowd control on a basic attack is a huge benefit as it requires no mana and preventing actions for 3 turns can tilt a battle in your favor if timed correctly.
Synergy with First Guardians
Due to the flop-flop passive activating on FC Degas’ basic attack, it synergizes well with the First Guardian passive when FC Degas has a buff and begins to stack dragon’s blood. As the dragon wrath deals damage scaling from a unit’s basic attack, it will trigger the flop-flop skill when FC Degas has stacks of dragon’s blood on him. This works best against enemies with aoe and frost attacks since the attack buff gained by removing Summer’s Blessing will also activate flop-flop.
If an enemy performs an aoe attack while FC Degas is buffed, he will then gain dragon’s blood, then the First Guardian passive will provide a dragon’s scale barrier, next a dragon’s wrath counter will activate and hit the enemy, and finally the enemy will be immobilized due to flop-flop being active on Degas. This works incredibly well in PVE content and PVP during tag weeks against aoe heavy teams.
Summer’s Blessing, a double-edge sword in PVP
While the damage immunity looks nice on paper as a Bathory counter, this passive skill is a double-edged sword with the current PVP meta utilizing First Guardians/Dragon Knights.
Although it prevents frost damage for 1 turn for your entire team, not being hit prevents the dragon scale shield from forming since it does not trigger “The Great One” mark from a First Guardian/Dragon Emperor Knight. This leaves your team vulnerable to a second-round burst from a FC Rera which would significantly lower your chance to win.
The benefit is seen in the attack buff provided after the damage immunity is removed. If your damage dealers (ideally the meta FC Annie/FC Rera pairing) are faster than the opposing team, they would typically be able to hit first in the second round allowing you to nuke the opposing team with the attack buff from Summer’s Blessing. Essentially giving you an increased chance at winning if you are speed tuned faster than your opponent.
Thus, a double-edged sword as it does provide an attack buff and protection from Bathory wipe in the first round, it also leaves your team vulnerable to a second round wipe if your damage dealers are not faster than the enemy.
Unleashed Potential vs Fatecore
As mentioned earlier, utilizing the stat increases from the Unleashed Potential tree in the hero journal will help Fatecore Degas reach his highest potential in terms of stat benefits. In addition, the Fatecore already has the active skills upgraded to match the Unleashed Potential upgrades.
Unfortunately, the passive is not upgraded and remains at Block 2 instead of Block 3. This does give value to the normal version of Degas as the additional mana gain from Block 3 is a valuable feature to have with the passive. The more mana you gain the more skills can be rotated during a battle. Depending on the situation, you can unequip the Fatecore if the mana gain will benefit you more than the passive bonuses.
Is Fatecore Degas a viable Garff or Uloom replacement?
Given the pros and cons mentioned above, the bottomline question remains, is FC Degas a suitable replacement to the top tier defense type units Garff and Uloom? The Fatecore stat increases supplemented with the stat increases from his Unleashed Potential definitely place him in line with his fated competitors if you have the resources to enhance him. In addition, his passive upgrade provides great crowd control capability and sustainability against frost heavy teams.
All of these features make him a solid replacement to Garff or Uloom for PVE content. However, if you are looking at him as a main front line tank in PVP content, you may be disappointed considering how his skill set is utilized in the current meta.
Due to the passive effectively delaying the dragon scale shield for your entire team against a FC Rera/Bathory backline, you place your team at a high risk for a second round wipe unless your damage dealers can outspeed your enemy which is not a risk worth taking. Ultimately, he is better suited as a secondary tank during tag weeks against non-meta off teams.
In conclusion, for those of you lucky enough to pull FC Degas you now have a viable primary tank for PVE content and a great secondary tank for PVP during tag weeks. However, if you are looking to climb the arena ladder with FC Degas as your primary tank, you will be sorely disappointed as he does not compete with the current meta. That said, for those of you that happen to pull him in a future banner do not hesitate to build him! He is a great addition to anyone’s roster.
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