Demigods was created on the 4th day of the launch of Returners, making it one of the oldest and biggest guilds that aims to be the best on the NA server. The guild is comprised of dedicated players and quite a few high-ranked users; they all like to share as many tips and as much advice as they can in their Discord community so that new players can also find joy in playing Returners.
Since the depth of understanding and amount of game knowledge becomes the power in Returners, we hoped that their insight on the game as rankers would provide some helpful perspectives.
We were lucky to have Narcolepsy, the guild leader of Demigods, as well as Witcher and Dildonian, two rankers of the same guild, join us to talk about several things, including metas on NA server, their opinions on the change within the game after 7-Star gear is added, and a wide variety of tips!
Could you briefly introduce yourselves?
Dildonian: I’m Dildonian, one of the officers in Demigods and probably one of the top competitive players in Returners.
Narcolepsy: I'm Narcolepsy, the guild leader of Demigods in Returners.
Witcher: Hello! My IGN is Witcher and I've been playing Returners since its launch. I am part of the guild Demigods and am currently a top contender in Arena and League. I like long walks on the beach and.....kidding :P Nice to be here today. Haha.
I was curious about how you chose the guild name and what it refers to?
Narcolepsy: It was created very suddenly because Multivitamin was about to leave a guild he and Cinema were in and wanted to join a new one. I figured being called "Gods" was just too cocky. So to imply a highly competitive nature in a name but not be real big-headed about it (hopefully), I went with Demigods.
Dildonian: I know a lot of people in the guild aren’t cocky; in our Discord, they are constantly bouncing ideas off of each other about what works and what doesn't work in the game. Once we get a full understanding of something, we usually post a guide on Reddit for other players.
Narcolepsy: Indeed. We are and have been constantly trying to learn and improve all we can about the game.
Dildonian: Guild wars pending! :P
Narcolepsy: We don’t know that yet, but hopefully there will be fierce competition.
Witcher: Hoping for it! Competition brings livelihood to the game and brings enjoyment in progression.
Since you guys mentioned guild wars: that has only been added to the KR server so far but it will soon be added to the global ones. How do you hope it will be?
Narcolepsy: From what I have been able to find on guild wars, it looks promising and exciting. It is one of the main reasons I’ve kept playing, actually. I truly hope they don't leave us in preseason as long as they have KR though.
Witcher: I'm hoping it will be exciting in terms of everyone in the guild having a chance to participate, and everyone’s contribution matters! I feel like the victory should be based on the teamwork of the entire guild instead of a handful of members carrying everyone. And I hope that it will push for everyone to communicate and plan accordingly to each others’ strengths and weaknesses!
Dildonian: I hope it is a booster shot to the game that gives people the passion to stay and improve, and I think it is just what guilds need to make them more special and build guild pride.
Witcher: New things are always welcome and looked forward too. I remember staying up late at night when Returners first launched, trying to progress through the Adventures and beat the Proving Ground!
Narcolepsy: Same, as well as grinding to unlock the next hero for gold purchase!
Dildonian: I strongly agree that the League content is the best content I’ve played in any game -- it is a week-long event that needs strategy. I have lost to and beaten people 20k+ over/under but there is only so much interest it can generate by itself. The only other truly competitive PvP in the game is Arena but it is a very flawed system that I feel is in desperate need of improvement. No one seems to play it until the last 5-10 mins of a Sunday to get the rewards, making it pointless almost 24/7; when you do try to play at that time and you are fighting for top 10, it’s hard to get an attack in because it always says the user is in battle. So more competitive content is always appreciated.
I heard that two of you are rankers -- what is your rank in League/Arena? Also, how long have you been playing?
Dildonian: All 3 of us are rankers, to be honest. I am usually top 10, Witcher is usually top 5, and Narc gets in the top 10 sometimes as well. I believe I actually got to 1st place once -- I got an attack in miraculously at 59 minutes and by the time the match was over at 10:1 on reset, someone else instantly attacked me during my attack. I was like what happened to the user in battle system which dropped me all the way from 1st to like 26th in a heartbeat, crushing me that night.
Narcolepsy: We are all in the top League at the moment. Or, well, Champions. I almost finish top 10 in Arena all the time and definitely top 20. On some Sundays, I even go from 350 or 400 to 20.
Witcher: Haha, the League depends. Being a high-ranked person, everyone uses their best strategy for me while I run out of Tactic Cards to defend myself halfway through. So my rank varies from 1 to 4 in League. In Arena, I'm currently #1.
Dildonian: In League, I haven't finished outside of 1st in season and in Tournament since I ended up in a league with Witcher and several other Demigods members. Witcher won and we call it the “Demigods Bloodbath”. It was the same week the Friend Referral system came out. All top Demigods players ended up in the same league; it was fun and super competitive but I never want to do that again since it was so stressful.
(Who won in the end?)
Witcher: It was definitely fun facing everyone. We will definitely have to do it again! Haha.
Narcolepsy: Luckily, these new leagues are challenging finally. I have to try them now.
Dildonian: Well, I beat you last week but you didn't even try, you legitimately went AFK throughout the whole week. That’s why the ban system is so great when people who are so strong that they can win without using Tactic Cards will lose to very weak active people if they quit the game since they will ban heroes. I know a lot of people complain about the ban system but trust me, everyone, the game is better off having it in; there are plenty of strong people who can beat you without Tactic Cards but the ban system allows you to beat them.
Witcher: Agreed. Active people should always have the upper hand!
It’s not actually easy to manage a community in Returners. Likewise, managing a guild mustn’t have been an easy thing to do. Are there any special tips on successful guild management?
Dildonian: I have a lot of experience in guild management as I used to run a top US raid guild in World of Warcraft years ago. Activity is a must because even if there is a lull in content, as long as you’re talking, socializing, and doing stuff with your guild members, time will pass by fast. All guilds that want a decent community should create a Discord to talk, hang out with your members, and bounce ideas off of each other as well as work to improve and help each other.
Narcolepsy: I will say, the size of our community makes it pretty challenging to attempt to stay elite and only recruit 60k+ players... There doesn't seem to be a lot of new players but reaching them is even more difficult. If it wasn't for the incredible people that joined Demigods from the start and have helped me and each other, I’m not sure there still would be a Demigods.
Witcher: They took the words right out of my mouth. I will say that recruiting would be easy if player-to-player communication was improved. As it stands, there is no way to PM someone in game and sometimes the Global Chat glitches out so you can't see past conversations. Management within the guild takes considerable dedication from our leader and officers but it's also teamwork and communication on both sides between members and leaders. :)
Narcolepsy: It's actually the worst I've seen in ANY of Nexon’s games… Even the timestamps don't work.
Dildonian: However, I have faith that Nexon will improve on this since, after all, they do seem to care about what their player base has to say. I still would prefer to see Arena changes before anything else on the improvement side of things, but the chat system still could use a good look over.
Let’s move on to the game now… Who do you each think is the most powerful player out of you three?
Witcher: I'm pretty weak -- Dildonian and Narcolepsy wipe the floor with me, LOL.
Dildonian: He won against someone who took advantage of the Friend Recommendation system and the launch of the new Loyalty system and he power leveled up to godly numbers just to win the tournament. Then I saw Witcher beat him without using Tactic Cards by accident at the Bloodbath. Also, he is also constantly in the top 5 in Arena; the only reason I did better than him this week is because he had real life stuff and took a week off. Not only that, he has built a godly raid team and doubles me in Raid damage.
Witcher: It didn't save my cards but I will say that it helps taking everything into consideration and seeing what works and what doesn't to help make the Guildies avoid the same mistake I made, haha.
Dildonian: Also, Witcher is one of the people that does everything he can to help other players out -- me, him, Multivitamin, and Cinema made guides for other players. I and Witcher also sent an open letter to Nexon about certain things they can do to improve the game so I believe Witcher is 100% the best player of the three of us in more ways than one.
(I can see you three are truly dedicated players in Returners... The community is lucky to have you all.)
Witcher: It's a great game that I want to see do its best. I definitely want it to show out more! It deserves to be big! I'm hoping that our efforts in giving advice and ideas to the developers will be taken into careful consideration. :)
Would it be possible for you to also share the guides you wrote with us? Also, I'm curious what your League team comp is, Witcher... What team comp did you use to defeat everyone else during the Bloodbath?
Dildonian: I have the guides for you -- this is just a sample. I recommend everyone who wants to improve to go to this Reddit because more people besides Demigods post helpful information here.
Also, here is a special bonus small tip for anyone reading this interview:
I recommend to players who participate in Arena to not do your Arena matches until right before the reset since every win gives you bonus medals if you can. That way, you get 10 attacks of bonus medals, not 5. Also, you can attack lower rank people for easy wins since it’s very easy to climb rank and nothing matters until Sunday.
As for the guides I posted, even though I typically posted the guides, I’m not always the author of them and even the true author usually gets input from 10-20 other players who are also top players. We even had a guy named Helios who is a top player in KR in our Discord giving us a lot of helpful insight into our guides. So there ya go, Demigods is here to help :)
Witcher: Haha. I'll have to see if I can remember… As for the guides, some are posted on the forums, I believe. No clue where. I typically offer on-hand advice to members in the chat with items and builds for certain characters :) My league comp I believe was Musashi/William/Cleopatra/Athena/ and... Cupid! I think.
It must have been hard to get to the point you are as rankers. Was there anything that was most helpful in scaling up your heroes and team as you played Returners?
Dildonian: Honestly, in games like this, a good advantage, of course, is to start early which we all did and it's easier to rise to the top faster; from there, take those at the top and make a guild so everyone who wants to be at the top would want to join your guild. I realize that this strategy might not work now but Returners keeps adding things to the game to help the new and growing player base. Also, we aren't selfish, we want good competition and a strong player base. That’s why we try our best to help people by giving them advice and making guides.
Witcher: Hmm.....I would say saving resources when it matters! Saving Gems for Legendary Gear Weekends or Stamina for events like the current one going on! And coming up with the best plan for League so you can maximize you win potential! Also, focusing on Adventure quests as they give good gear the higher you get; but it's important that even if you fail once or twice, you'll eventually find a strategy that'll help push through to get that 3-star rating!
Dildonian: Another quick tip I can give -- it is in one of our guides. Don't spend Bluestones on heroes you can buy with gold. Faster scaling is from equipment, not heroes - since all heroes can beat other heroes. The only hero I recommend buying with Bluestones instead of gold is Taejo (again, it’s in one of my guides) but you don't have to. I think Witcher is the one who created the William Tell meta, proving William is a beast with gear, especially in Raids.
Could you go into details about the William Tell meta?
Dildonian: Witcher, want to tell your secrets?
Witcher: Hmm. I would say that as it stands, it's definitely very physical-based. Very low magic. Most people build physical defense as well to combat it. So now, it changes slowly with the addition of 1 mage with physical defense gear.
Dildonian: But you specifically like to use William Tell whereas everyone else uses Tajeo and Jumong. So, can you talk about William?
Witcher: Yes! I love William. His physical penetration skill is definitely top tier if invested in - letting me hit some players with 20k crits, haha. Higher the damage, lower their gear is. The only problem is that his initial focus is tanks. He would be amazing if his focus was towards mages or other rangers. But he does a great job as a tank buster!
Dildonian: What gear do you use on him and what is your typical Raid setup? Because I know Raids are where he really shines.
Witcher: Haha, well, to be honest... I don't really use him in Raids! My current build on him is a 4-piece Ultimate set for the 2-set bonuses and the Unique Legendary Helmet for the major attack damage increase and critical rate! As it stands, his critical rate is at 60%! Jumong is definitely the king of Raids if paired with Cassandra as she can put his ult on cooldown and it stacks!
For the last Raid setup, I used Cassandra for Jumong cooldown, Musashi for the sustain and damage along with Wu Kong for the physical defense down! Lastly, Panacea to give sustain to my two fighters so they can keep aggro! But, of course, with new bosses, new strategies will have to be formed and tweaked. But for a little surprise -- my highest damage in Raids was 2.3 million! With the setup above for the Ifrit Raid! I might have a picture proof somewhere…
Well since we've talked about the William Tell meta… Currently, on the KR server, the meta where you pull enemies together using Hong Gil-dong and Victoria then deal burst damage is very popular. Do you know what meta is currently most popular on NA?
Dildonian: Oh yes, the wombo combo. I’ve seen that and we have tinkered with the idea but, currently, the meta since the start in NA is running double archer, specifically Tajeo and Jumong, and one mage which is usually Nikola Tesla or Rasputina. I’m also starting to see some Dr. Jekyll now since he’s been released.
The tank is usually Athena; it use to be Siegfried but many of us in our guides kept telling everyone Siegfried isn’t that good, although people didn’t start leaving him until Athena finally came along because most people just bought all the 4-star heroes and invested in them, so they just kept them.
The 5th hero is usually Musashi, especially since they released the skin for him. Some people have tried to move to the double mage meta but it seems like the ranger meta is here to stay. Also, hybrid heroes in NA are considered inferior to single damage type ones. I use Xiang Yu, who is a hybrid, for his skills and tag info, not for his damage.
Is there any way to counter the ranger meta?
Dildonian: Sure, that wombo combo meta in KR could probably counter it. Also, a strong use of Tactic Cards can counter anything. You could also get a hero like Frankenstein to grab one of the rangers and then merc him down but I could counter that with, let’s say, a CC Immunity Card. What’s so great about this game is that there is a counter to everything and a counter to the counter and so on.
(Right, so you can actually come up with countless strategies.)
Dildonian: For sure, that’s why we like to constantly remind players that these are great strategies and will help you, but they are not the only ways to play Returners in our guides. You don't absolutely have to do this or that or build up this guy, but it sets a foundation for you to build on when the game is new and you might not know what to do.
I was promoted to Diamond league not too long ago. I only have 3,000 Bluestones and can’t make up my mind on what to get between Dr. Jekyll and Nikola Tesla. Which one would you recommend and why?
Dildonian: I have yet to get Dr. Jekyll and I’m biased to Nikola Tesla but I can tell you why you would need to get Dr. Jekyll. In my opinion, Tesla is hands down the best mage damage in the game. A lot of people thought he would change the meta to a mage meta when he came out since he has great AoE attacks and CC with his ult; he wins you games when you pair him with the Absolute Monarch set. This guy is serious trouble, especially when your enemy is forced to focus on your rangers and by the time your rangers might be dead, Tesla’s ult would have killed everyone.
As for Dr. Jekyll, you know he will stay up and heal. I personally still prefer Tesla, although others might disagree. Again, it comes down to “everything can beat everything” but for my team comp comprised of Jumong, Tesla, Taejo, Xian Yu, and Athena, I have a triple threat in damage and you have to pick your poison of what you want to die to; the CC and Athena’s ult will keep others alive long enough that I won’t need a healer.
Witcher: Dr. Jekyll definitely has great damage output -- AoE magic defense and health regen! Definitely a jack of all trades. Tesla isn't bad! Just as good, but I will say that decision is strongly based on your team comp and what skills go together! Both are amazing with great potential that shines best when paired with their corresponding parts in the team comp! There isn't much of a "who is better than who" -- both are amazing!
You heard that 7-Star gear will be added to Returners soon, right?; it comes with a huge increase on HP and defense. What change do you think this new update will bring?
Dildonian: Well, it seems some of the content in the game was made near impossible without 7-star gear -- floor 16, anyone? So it should unlock a little extra content and it should also make the last stages of Adventure doable. However, if that is the case, it would mean all PvE content has been unlocked so they will have to release more PvE content eventually with the unlocking of 7-Star gear.
Also, a new league will have to come out -- Master league I assume, with the reward being the material needed to upgrade to 7-star gear like they did for the 7-Star heroes.
Witcher: Pretty much sums it up. We hope that there will be more content as gear increases as well as levels!
Using Tactic Cards is important in League, but since the number of times you can use them is limited, they need to be used efficiently. What is the best Tactic Card combination and are there any tips you can share about them?
Dildonian: So, in NA, I created a certain combination during the Bloodbath league and Witcher improved upon it. It doesn't work now, because since then Nexon has nerfed it, but it was great for the Tourney because it made bans irrelevant. It super buffed the remaining heroes you had to god levels, and Mutation would auto-process since you’re sacrificing 2 heroes so you start off with 10 seconds of free attacks. I called this the “Dildo special”. I won many tournaments I shouldn't have with this strategy and it didn't matter who you banned.
However, Witcher then decided I’ll use what is now called Bad Trade instead of Mutation, giving you a free kill for what you would sacrifice anyways. Either one worked. Now, since it has been nerfed, other combos like Taunt and No Pain, No Gain work well. In NA, I believe I started the use of those combinations. I don’t know if they were doing that already in KR since it has been out so much longer there. Unfortunately, the Dildo special (Noble Sacrifice & Mutation or Bad Trade) had been nerfed deservingly because it bypassed the strategic point of bans. They, of course, can still be countered but, to me, that was the best combo and now a weaker version of that is still usable.
Witcher: Hmm. There are many variations to combinations, some work more than others but a big factor is your team comp and the enemies! I typically monitor the other players’ gameplay and card usage to help determine what cards I assume they will play. If you have less of an advantage, then the Tactic Card that does HP% to the enemy team every time one of your heroes dies is a great card! As was a Confusion or Mutation to help turn around a fight! But also Nullification cards to help combat other people's playstyles! Another cool but funny comp was the "Noble Sacrifice 3" card which kills off your team if they are in bad condition but buffs the other heroes that live! So I use that with the card that does HP% to enemies to have a straightforward attack and boost my leftover units!
Dildonian: I find Mutation is great but Confusion not so much because it's not a guarantee you'll go 2 heroes down at the start of the match and if you use Confusion at the end of that match and only have 1 hero left, it’s not really going to do much for you, so I prefer Taunt cards. But that is the beauty of this game -- everything beats everything and everything can be countered.
Is there anything you want from Returners or anything you would like to add to the interview?
Dildonian: So, this is basically to the devs of this game. I’m very outspoken because I hear this a lot on Reddit, Discord, or from anyone I see talking on our crappy chat system. I mentioned this a few times already.
Witcher: MILLIONS OF BLUESTONES
Dildonian: I love a lot of features of this game especially the League since it is so well done, but the Arena system is probably one of the worst Arena systems I have seen in a game.
Witcher: Err, I mean.
Dildonian: Please, updating it is all I ask. Not everyone can stay up until 1 AM (EST) on Sunday to fight for a week’s worth of Bluestones and on top of that, even if you do stay up, you might not even get to play because everyone is in battle. Winning Arena is not based on skill, it is luck.
Witcher: Just for them to take what their fanbase has to say about the game! They are the ones playing it and notice good changes and bad ones! As well as future improvements. Most successful games are successful because they listen to their fanbase and bring constant updates to keep their fans happy and engaged!
Dildonian: Just consider making it a daily reward instead of weekly because what is the point of playing Arena throughout the week besides the last 5 minutes of Sunday? It is a dead feature. Or, even better, make it so that if you are in a certain rank, you get points every hour in Arena; the higher your rank is, the higher the points you accumulate every hour for being in that rank. Not a set hour either, but just the hour of time you were in that rank so that it’s more natural and people aren't fighting each other at the end of every hour.
And the higher the points -- that is what your rank is for -- you get rewards based off the points you accumulated at the end of the week and you can make it so that Arena attacks regenerate like Raid attacks.
So the person with the most Arena rank points is the number ranked guy overall. By doing this, Arena means something throughout the whole week and we can sleep when we need to and are not screwed since it won’t say every user is in battle, fighting each other at the same time. It is more spaced out and the game can handle it easier.
I love this game, you guys can do better than this Arena system. Also, put out your patch notes 24-48 hours in advance, not when the patch is already patching. You never know when we can point out something like how the Friend Recommendation system was a hot mess. You need our input just as much as we need you to make the content we want to enjoy. Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to speak about this, this topic is close to my heart.
Narcolepsy: I'd love the game to get more publicity. It needs more downloads. It is truly one of the best titles out for mobile and to see it kind of flounder makes me sad. I was really hoping we would be at a million downloads… With retention at the rate it seems to be for this and many many mobile games, more downloads is a necessity for a long-lived title. And I'd love to see it in the hands of my coworkers and friends as well as all of your friends, too! This game is really great but anytime I mention it, people ask, "What?"
As for the Raid setup, I tend to follow Witcher’s setup for Ifrit but as for Centaur, I am still testing endlessly. As for the 7-Star gear... I wish I was more prepared for it. It’s been a month since I haven’t had playtime so I’m falling behind. Hitting top 15 this weekend was a struggle and I ended at 21! I am still very excited about 7-Star gear and hope it doesn't break the game. The biggest whales potentially will just be absolute monsters that are unkillable for a month or two!
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