Scarlet follows in the footsteps of other bosses of Legend Plus level-up dungeons, being a premium farmable option that also comes with a premium price tag. It doesn’t take a genius to see that she has great awakenings and a nice active, but where she fits is less obvious. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard of the Scarlet System, but outside of that team there’s not much of a home for her as a sub or leader. It’s this niche usage that makes her inferior to Zaerog∞, but to be fair there are even few REM rolls that surpass the dragon king.
Scarlet’s defining team is the Scarlet System, a team of six Scarlets that, barring enemy interference, generates 12 fire orbs each turn, more than enough to guarantee activation of her 25x ATK leader skill. For those not familiar, here’s a demonstration of the team’s power:
I wouldn’t suggest using the Scarlet System to clear the Arena as many things must go right for it to do so, but the video is still a testament to the team’s overall power. It’s somewhat sickening that such an easy to use gimmick team can be so powerful, but I’m sure GungHo had this in mind when they developed the card, giving whales another trophy to chase.
Value of the System Team Compared to Other Options
The Scarlet System is quite powerful, but is it worth the resources to make it and how does it compare to other options? The closest comparisons are the Cloud System and Shiva Dragon, both of which are also quite expensive to assemble. The Cloud System has many of the same strengths as Scarlet — mainly consistency and ease of use — but brings extra utility in the form of fire Amaterasu and an HP boost; the trade off being less frequent burst. Shiva Dragon has much more flexibility, being able to tailor its subs to the situation, but while being quite brain-dead itself, is not nearly on the level of ease as Scarlet nor does it have a guaranteed amount of orbs to work with every turn.
In my opinion, any of those three teams are great to have, but if you have one you generally don’t need another. I think Shiva Dragon is the best value overall since it can easily clear the widest variety of content and is the most future-proof since the sub pool is better, but isn’t quite as mindless as the others. This is actually a huge difference for hardcore farmers. Over a few runs, this difference isn’t all that noticeable, but over several hours the less brain cycles used really starts to make a difference on mental fatigue. For most, the deciding factor will be availability, but for those that have multiple options it comes down to how much you value ease of use.
Raoh as an Alternative System Lead
Raoh’s upgraded active allows him to be a Scarlet substitute and not break the system while his leader skill presents a potential solution to one of Scarlet’s biggest problems: max HP and surviving big hits. You do trade off a lot for it, though, reducing the normal 25x ATK to 22.5x for one Raoh lead or 20.25x for two, but for most uses that difference isn’t all that significant.
For the Arena, the HP boost addresses the problem that is DQ Hera’s preemptive, but that’s not enough to make the Scarlet System a consistent option. The team already needed significant skyfall luck to handle the Kalis and lowering the ATK multiplier makes them near impossible to overcome. The HP boost certainly expands the team’s farming repertoire, though.
For those curious, here’s a video of the team trivializing Extreme Endless.
Other Uses as a Leader
Scarlet’s leader skill is essentially the middle ground between Yamato Takeru and Neptune Dragon. Yamato tops out at 4x for eight connected orbs which is also Scarlet’s lower end. Neptune Dragon tops out at 6x for 11 connected orbs whereas Scarlet does 5x for 10 connected orbs. As a farmable option, these are both favorable comparisons. However, Yamato hasn’t been a relevant endgame leader for ages and Neptune Dragon is an elite leader in large part to its RCV multiplier, but the extra damage also helps. This means Scarlet is in that weird middle ground where she’s good, but not elite. She looks even worse when compared to Shiva Dragon’s unconditional 25x. Yamato is generally still a better farming lead since he requires less orbs to clear trash and the extra skill boost is often critical for having skills ready on time. There just isn’t much of a place for Scarlet as a lead outside her system.
Other Uses as a Sub
Scarlet’s awakenings — which are essentially Yamato’s, trading a skill boost for another row — are great and encourage her use on row teams, but she doesn’t qualify for the best lead in Shiva Dragon. Only having devil type may be her biggest limiting factor, constraining the types of teams she can sub for.
Her active is underwhelming. Four orbs and a haste on seven turns cooldown isn’t a horrible deal, but when compared to Cloud- or Satsuki-eqsue actives that share the same cooldown it starts to look worse by just pure orb count. This orb limitation also means you’ll need two other fire orbs on the board to complete a row. This really drives home the fact that Scarlet was intended to be a system as, unlike the other orb change types, they get better the more you use in the same turn. Continuing the comparison to Yamato, her active is significantly worse if only for not making hearts.
Everything considered, there really aren’t many teams that want to use Scarlet as a sub, but here’s what I could come up with:
So, in short, she really isn’t a great sub option outside her system.
I’d say Scarlet was pushed as hard as Zaerog∞, but where Zaerog∞ is the best farmable monster in the game due to his wide range of uses, Scarlet is limited to her system team, killing her value. This means she’ll really only see use by the most dedicated players in search of the most efficient farming teams. It’s a shame she has such a limited role, but hopefully new options appear for her in the future. Hey, at least for now she’s got those thighs going for her.
Oh, right. If you’re looking to farm a Scarlet System, you should go prepared. Because everyone has spare dark latents lying around, right? Here’s hoping we get farmable resist latents soon.