A Look at Awoken Astaroth for the Arena

Just so it’s clear, this post was written for Arena 1 before Arena 2 was released. I won’t be revising this post for Arena 2.

2505 - Awoken AstarothI have an inexplicable love for tank teams so I’ve been interested in making an Awoken Astaroth team as soon as she was revealed. Sure, she was a disappointment with her initial stats, but it was only a matter of time before they buffed her (I wasn’t expecting quite this much, though). My interest piqued when Game8 added her to their S-tier, something I never would have guessed based on my perception of the team at the time. Game8 obviously isn’t the word of god, but the fact that they would put themselves out there with that rating meant that Astaroth could actually be the elite row leader wood never had. I don’t plan on going too in-depth, but I do want to use this post to superficially explore her capabilities in the Arena, the current barometer of a team’s endgame viability.

What Is Her Ideal Arena Team?

I wanted to piggyback JP’s team building efforts by looking at YouTube Arena clears and poaching some of their lineups, but not only are there not many clears (which makes Game8’s rating a bit dubious right off the bat, especially when considering the amount Lucifer has), there doesn’t appear to be any one set team. However, it seems like the core for the team is:
2505 - Awoken Astaroth2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael1730 - Thorned Goddess, Valkyrie Elize2394 - Awoken FreyjaUnknown Card2505 - Awoken Astaroth
Freyja’s importance is self-evident. Michael is obviously powerful and is really the only good orb changer that qualifies for the team. Elize isn’t quite as obvious, but the Michael + Elize combination is fairly potent for dealing damage. The flex slot is generally filled by one of:
2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael2280 - Miko Goddess of Protection, Kushinadahime2505 - Awoken Astaroth
I personally like a second Michael since he gives more firepower while also helping with team healing. Kushinadahime is a nice option for dealing with the Kalis. I’m not a huge fan of a third Astaroth due to orb fatigue.

For the sake of completeness, here are other notable subs:
2495 - Demon Destroying Star Angel, Ruel2016 - Class Monitor, Athena1535 - Awoken Ceres1629 - Chivalric Demon Prince, Cauchemar1266 - Underworld Protector Genbu, Meimei1513 - Shrine Priestess, Kano2517 - Christmas Tree Spirit, Alraune1417 - Four Leaf Clover Princess, Thumbelina1956 - Awoken Parvati1953 - Enraged Black Phantom Demon, Zuoh2512 - Holy Night Red Dragon Caller, Sonia

Arena Team Strengths and Weaknesses

That’s a Lot of Rows

2505 - Awoken Astaroth2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael2394 - Awoken Freyja
The team already has 14 rows with the flex spot being empty (Elize received an extra row with the recent Valkyrie improvements). Combining that with Astaroth’s 20.25x results in a ton of damage. This makes the flex spot truly flexible as a utility sub can be slotted in with little concern for offense.

RCV Concerns

2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael
As Astaroth only provides an HP multiplier, I’m forced to recall how painful it was healing with my old Verdandi team. However, there’s two big differences: this is a predominately healer team so the base RCV is quite good and that Michael provides 2,000 HP in auto-heals every turn. The enhanced heart awakenings and the fact that the team can frequently burst also helps. I’ll get into the exact healing numbers when I dig into actual stats, but this team should be much better at healing than my old Verdandi teams.

Elemental Weakness

The team will obviously have problems with fire monsters, but the team should have enough offense to help minimize the effect of the reduced damage. The question becomes whether the team can possibly tank well enough so you can minimize the number of actives needed to clear the floor. Team healing is a concern, but since the team’s high HP negates the need for dark resist latents against DQ Hera, you can instead use fire resists to help those matchups; the most obvious being the Kalis, but the team can also see benefits against floors like Drall, Kagutsuchi, Lifive, and Hera-Ur.

Full-Board Orb Change

1629 - Chivalric Demon Prince, Cauchemar1266 - Underworld Protector Genbu, Meimei2512 - Holy Night Red Dragon Caller, Sonia
Full-board orb changers used to be critical for tank teams for two reasons: to provide a board that represents maximum damage while being easy to solve and to deal with gimmicks like Beelzebub’s full-poison board change. Astaroth herself obsoletes these needs. Her high team damage means you no longer need to pray for perfect two-element, three-row boards; a single orb change is usually enough damage to take care of most floors. For situations where you really need the extra damage, some combination of Michael, Elize and Freyja should be more than enough. Her orb change also takes care of garbage jammer and poison orbs, trivializing floors like Grisar and Beelzebub. It also helps turn all the random jammer spawning and skyfall debuffs that plague the entire dungeon into a positive.

Binds

2505 - Awoken Astaroth2280 - Miko Goddess of Protection, Kushinadahime1535 - Awoken Ceres1417 - Four Leaf Clover Princess, Thumbelina
My proposed team has no dedicated bind clearer, but that shouldn’t be too much of an issue in most cases; Astaroth being bind immune really helps as you’ll never lose your HP buffer. That being said, if there really is a concern with binds the team has some great options in Ceres and Thumbelina. Kushinadahime and Kano also have incidental bind recovery awakenings.

Time Extends and Time Reductions

Unknown Card
There’s a perception that unconditional row or TPA teams take less skill to play, but that’s only true to a point; to get the most out of any type of leader you need to combo as much of the board as possible and time extends are critical in doing so consistently. Comboing an entire board while matching rows is more difficult than for a rainbow or combo activation since you’ll need to move orbs a greater distance on average and row cascades are less intuitive for most people. This makes the lack of time extends available to Astaroth one of her biggest weaknesses; the only realistic sub with one on NA is Kushinadahime. This makes the Arena’s time reduction debuffs even more punishing; there’s really not much anyone can do with only two to three seconds of matching. Luckily, those only happen on the earlier floors where you have more leeway, but who’s to say there won’t be some in the later floors of the revamped Arena. Combo shields can be a problem as well.

Arena Hurdles

My only first-hand experience with the Arena is with Ra Dragon; I think I have a fairly good grasp of the various Arena hurdles, but I may miss some things as the teams play completely different. Here’s what I can guess to the best of my knowledge:

Common Arena Hurdles
Monster Notes
2104 - Graceful General, Zhou Yu Zhou Yu is surprisingly challenging for a spawn in the first half of the dungeon. He should pose very little problems for Astaroth, though, as the elemental advantage should make it easy to one-shot him on the first turn, even through the shield and blind.
1463 - Awoken Sopdet Sopdet is the scourge of the Arena — at least until they add Vishnu and/or Goemon — but Astaroth should be fairly consistent in killing her. I’ll run the actual numbers later in this post, but between attacking through the base 2.25x or through a non-row six-orb match, there should be an effective way to get under the 200k absorb shield.
1726 - Awoken Hinokagutsuchi Being elementally weak to Kagutsuchi might actually be advantageous here, allowing the team to slowly grind him bellow 50% HP. The bind is somewhat of a concern, but the team should be able to do enough damage to finish him off even missing two subs.
1956 - Awoken Parvati Perhaps the second most notorious spawn after Sopdet, Parvati generously gives the team valuable hearts and wood orbs to kill her with. The team has enough HP to survive her enrage, making this floor rather simple.
2075 - Awoken Meimei I’m not sure if you have to use Freyja here, but Meimei generously gives us a board change that combines with Michael which should be enough to pierce her defense and wood resist.
2092 - Storm Mighty Dragon Emperor, Lifive Lifive is probably the most dangerous spawn in the dungeon for this team. Having to do over 17 million damage in two turns (as surviving his 500k damage absorb shield would be quite difficult for the team) is quite taxing, especially in this part of the dungeon where you want to conserve as many actives as possible. Fire latents will help a bit, I guess, but I can see many runs ending here.
985 - Divine Queen Hera Astaroth’s old leader skill provided enough HP to survive this, so the new one has some room to spare. Without dark resist latents, even. I feel that you’d be lucky to survive this if you got Lifive the previous floor, though.
1536 - Awoken Dancing Queen Hera-Ur Not nearly as bad as Lifive, but still annoying. Full fire resists should actually give the team a reasonable chance to stall for skills before the Kalis. The fire and jammer skyfall debuff is a minor annoyance, but can be turned into an advantage through Astaroth’s orb change.
1371 - Crazed King of Purgatory, Beelzebub Astaroth’s active will take care of the full-poison board.
2078 - Blazing Goddess of Power, Kali I don’t like the prospect of having to knock the Kalis under 65% HP through their 50% damage shield. The team is more than capable of generating the requisite damage, but I don’t know how consistent it is at doing so. This could make Kushinadahime a better sub prospect than the second Michael, but that’s not obvious when the entire dungeon is taken into consideration. I also don’t think it’s worth gimping your team with a gravity like Nordis or Zeus & Hera. This may only be something I can decide on by actually trying the team myself (although a reputable player endorsing a certain sub setup would save me a lot of work).
Unknown Card There are a few other damage hurdles like the Extreme King, Grisar and maybe even the tamas, but I’ll be able to address these better once I run the actual numbers. I don’t foresee there being a problem, though.

Team Stats

In the past, theorycrafting damage for tank teams was somewhat simple because the burst could be tested with a 20-10 board (the average result of combining a three-element board change with another orb change which conveniently allows for three row matches via cascades). Since my proposed Astaroth team has no full-board changers, I had to do some research on the types of boards players were using to deal with the Kalis. Surprisingly, there aren’t all that many Astaroth Arena clears on YouTube, but for most of the clears they had at least two wood rows to work with. While there’s a good chance Michael + Elize will result in a three-row board, I’m going to first test the average board resulting from Michael + Astaroth. It will usually give two rows to work with and since the team has two Michaels and two Astaroths, you should have both ready for the boss floor fairly often (like you may have needed to use Elize to take care of Lifive earlier).

* Avg. Michael + Astaroth board: 15 wood orbs, 10 heart orbs, 5 water orbs; 16 wood row enhances; no enhanced wood orbs; 2x wood damage (Freyja); on-board combos (7): 2 wood rows, 1 wood 3-orb match, 4 others; all hypermax; solved with this board; stats calculated using PADSpike
Team Breakdown – Two Michaels, Michael + Astaroth Board
Damage By Sub
2505 - Awoken Astaroth 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 1730 - Thorned Goddess, Valkyrie Elize 2394 - Awoken Freyja 2505 - Awoken Astaroth
Main 4,162,134 4,715,172 4,715,172 3,987,995 4,420,474 4,162,134
Sub 0 471,517 471,517 0 0 0
Team Damage
Elem. Fire Water Wood Light Dark Total
Dmg. 0 0 27,106,115 0 0 27,106,115
Other Stats
Team HP 50,674 RCV 5,128
Awkn. Enhanced Wood Att.
×16
Skill Boost
×8
Resistance-Skill Bind
×6
Two-Pronged Attack
×3
Auto-Recover
×8
Enhanced Heart Orbs
×2

That damage will get the team out of the Kali danger zone, but it’s closer than I’d like. If you get one less wood orb, that prevents you from making the additional three-orb match which puts the damage under the 21 million or so that is needed. It looks like we’ll have to try the Michael + Elize board after all, but it’s nice to know that we can get close even if Elize isn’t ready.

* Avg. Michael + Elize board: 20 wood orbs, 5 fire orbs, 5 water orbs; 16 wood row enhances; no enhanced wood orbs; 2x wood damage (Freyja); on-board combos (5): 3 wood rows, 2 others; all hypermax; solved with this board; stats calculated using PADSpike
Team Breakdown – Two Michaels, Michael + Elize Board
Damage By Sub
2505 - Awoken Astaroth 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 1730 - Thorned Goddess, Valkyrie Elize 2394 - Awoken Freyja 2505 - Awoken Astaroth
Main 5,364,529 6,077,333 6,077,333 5,140,082 5,697,500 5,364,529
Sub 0 607,733 607,733 0 0 0
Team Damage
Elem. Fire Water Wood Light Dark Total
Dmg. 0 0 34,936,772 0 0 34,936,772
Other Stats
Team HP 50,674 RCV 5,128
Awkn. Enhanced Wood Att.
×16
Skill Boost
×8
Resistance-Skill Bind
×6
Two-Pronged Attack
×3
Auto-Recover
×8
Enhanced Heart Orbs
×2

This damage output easily clears the Kali hurdle and should be more than enough reason to have Elize on the team over other options. Even if we get poor RNG, the board should be at least as effective as the Michael + Astaroth one. On a side note, these calculations don’t factor in the extra row that the Valkyries got recently so the damage should only get better.

So the team does more than enough damage and has plenty of HP, but what about its RCV? Right off the bat, 5,128 looks pretty good for a team with no multiplier considering many tank teams with 2.5x RCV barely reach 9,000. So what does that translate to in actual healing numbers?

* Healing is based off a single three-heart match. “Combos” represents the total number of matches. “w/ 1 +Heart” is the total healing assuming the heal match had a single enhanced heart orb.
Healing With a Second Michael
Combos Healed Auto-Heal Total Heal w/ 1 +Heart
1 5,128 4,000 9,128 9,948
2 6,410 4,000 10,410 11,436
3 7,692 4,000 11,692 12,923
4 8,974 4,000 12,974 14,410
5 10,256 4,000 14,256 17,384
6 11,538 4,000 15,538 17,153

This is pretty amazing for a team that has an RCV multiplier. The auto-heals add a great effect, but what really impresses me are the the enhanced heart awakenings. There’s only two awakenings on the team so you won’t get to benefit from them all the time (40% enhanced rate), but they really do give a substantial boost and are a boon for a team like this. Michael also enhances hearts, so it’s very likely the team will be able to heal to full after using his active. With the enhanced hearts being so good, Alraune’s stock goes up even more.

Now, let’s look at that Kushinadahime team. The main advantage is that the team can survive the Kali nuke without latent resists. After Kushi’s 75% shield, DKali will do 31,125, well under the 50k+ HP the team should have.

* Avg. Michael + Elize board: 20 wood orbs, 5 fire orbs, 5 water orbs; 16 wood row enhances; no enhanced wood orbs; 2x wood damage (Freyja); on-board combos (5): 3 wood rows, 2 others; all hypermax; solved with this board; stats calculated using PADSpike
Team Breakdown – Kushinadahime, Michael + Elize Board
Damage By Sub
2505 - Awoken Astaroth 2280 - Miko Goddess of Protection, Kushinadahime 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 1730 - Thorned Goddess, Valkyrie Elize 2394 - Awoken Freyja 2505 - Awoken Astaroth
Main 4,809,578 4,924,565 5,448,643 4,608,349 5,108,103 4,809,578
Sub 0 492,457 544,864 0 0 0
Team Damage
Elem. Fire Water Wood Light Dark Total
Dmg. 0 0 30,746,137 0 0 30,746,137
Other Stats
Team HP 51,540 RCV 5,157
Awkn. Enhanced Wood Att.
×14
Skill Boost
×8
Resistance-Skill Bind
×6
Enhanced Wood Orbs
×2
Auto-Recover
×5
Enhanced Heart Orbs
×3

This team is about four million damage short of the two-Michael team, but it should be more than enough for the Kalis, especially if you get an enhanced wood orb or two. It’s also enough to one-shot them when their shield is down, which makes Kushinadahime an intriguing option since one-shoting them is obviously the better option than having to potentially deal with the fire portion of their HP bars. What this team can do is use Kushinadahime and Freyja (and an Astaroth if one is available) on the first turn to do a decent amount of damage against the shield, like maybe five million or so, then on the next turn use Michael and Elize to finish them off before they change to fire.

The team also loses the second Michael’s auto-heals, so let’s check how the healing compares:

* Healing is based off a single three-heart match. “Combos” represents the total number of matches. “w/ 1 +Heart” is the total healing assuming the heal match had a single enhanced heart orb.
Healing With Kushinadahime
Combos Healed Auto-Heal Total Heal w/ 1 +Heart
1 5,157 2,500 7,657 8,482
2 6,446 2,500 8,946 9,978
3 7,736 2,500 10,236 11,473
4 9,025 2,500 11,525 12,969
5 10,314 2,500 12,814 14,464
6 11,603 2,500 14,103 15,960

There’s an obvious drop, but Kushinadahime’s enhanced heart awakening helps fill some of the gap.

So the team can deal with the Kalis just fine, but the next biggest damage hurdle is Awoken Meimei. The 20-10 board we get by using Michael on her three-element board change should be enough damage even without Freyja, but let’s check to make sure:

* Avg. Meimei + Michael board: 20 wood orbs, 10 heart orbs; 16 wood row enhances; no enhanced wood orbs; no Freyja; on-board combos (6): 3 wood rows, 3 others; all hypermax; using optimal board setup; stats calculated using PADSpike
Awoken Meimei: Meimei + Michael
Damage By Sub
2505 - Awoken Astaroth 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 1730 - Thorned Goddess, Valkyrie Elize 2394 - Awoken Freyja 2505 - Awoken Astaroth
Main 3,017,547 3,418,500 3,418,500 2,891,296 3,204,843 3,017,547
Sub 0 341,850 341,850 0 0 0
Team Damage
Elem. Fire Water Wood Light Dark Total
Dmg. 0 0 19,651,933 0 0 19,651,933
Other Stats
Team HP 50,674 RCV 5,128
Awkn. Enhanced Wood Att.
×16
Skill Boost
×8
Resistance-Skill Bind
×6
Two-Pronged Attack
×3
Auto-Recover
×8
Enhanced Heart Orbs
×2

After Meimei’s 30% wood reduction, Michael still does 2,392,950 which is more than enough to kill her. Sadly, getting a board like this is not quite enough to push Elize over the threshold via TPA, so you may have to use Freyja if you get bad orb RNG. I’m not going to bother doing damage calculations for the other Arena damage checks; it should be pretty obvious that the team has little problems with damage (although several turns of consecutive burst is another issue).

Astaroth definitely does enough damage to be Arena-worthy and benefits from not having to resort to Marionette-based antics. However, her healing, while great for a team with no RCV multiplier, is somewhat suspect and I’d assume that it will affect the team’s consistency. Lifive is my biggest concern at this point.

Even after comparing the two team lineups, I’m not sure which is better, but either option looks pretty good. There are certainly other sub options to consider like Christmas Alraune, a board changer or even a gravity (or something like Thief that NA will never get), but at least for now the team core appears to have what it takes to do well in the Arena.

Damage Control

1463 - Awoken Sopdet1956 - Awoken Parvati
Sopdet and Parvati have made damage control an essential quality for endgame leads; the more consistently you can do so, the more consistent your Arena clears will be. Here’s what the team does with a single row:

One Wood Row
Damage By Sub
2505 - Awoken Astaroth 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 1730 - Thorned Goddess, Valkyrie Elize 2394 - Awoken Freyja 2505 - Awoken Astaroth
Main 200,399 227,027 227,027 192,015 212,838 200,399

So close, but even if everyone was under 200k, you’d still want a little breathing room to compensate for the inevitable skyfalls. However, this damage is pretty much perfect for Parvati, who generously gives you a row of wood orbs every other turn. Here’s what the team does with a non-row six-orb match:

Six-Orb Wood Match, Not a Row
Damage By Sub
2505 - Awoken Astaroth 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 1730 - Thorned Goddess, Valkyrie Elize 2394 - Awoken Freyja 2505 - Awoken Astaroth
Main 77,077 87,318 87,318 73,852 81,861 77,077

This really makes you appreciate how much damage row enhances really bring. This is a great number to start with for Sopdet and you can add off-element combos to get as close to the threshold as you’re comfortable with. Adding a single three-orb wood combo puts you at some nice values:

Six-Orb Wood Match, Not a Row + Three-Orb Wood Match
Damage By Sub
2505 - Awoken Astaroth 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 1730 - Thorned Goddess, Valkyrie Elize 2394 - Awoken Freyja 2505 - Awoken Astaroth
Main 151,400 171,518 171,518 145,066 160,798 151,400

This is really risky, though, as just a single additional combo will put the Michaels over 200k. You’re almost certainly going to have to make three attacks to clear Sopdet so you may as well minimize the risk. An additional two or three non-wood combos seems like a good idea.

That takes care of Sopdet, but Parvati isn’t quite as simple since she gives you a board with at least three combos. Assuming no skyfall combos, can we just let this board resolve itself and still come in under the threshold?

Calming Mountain Wind: One Wood Row, Two Heart Rows
Damage By Sub
2505 - Awoken Astaroth 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 2500 - Archangel of Annihilation, Michael 1730 - Thorned Goddess, Valkyrie Elize 2394 - Awoken Freyja 2505 - Awoken Astaroth
Main 300,599 340,540 340,540 288,022 319,256 300,599

Of course it wouldn’t be that easy. It shouldn’t be particularly difficult to adjust the damage, though.

In short, Astaroth is about as consistent as a leader can get against these damage checks. Since she has the ability to clear Sopdet, all the other damage control tests are possible to pass: Parvati, Kagutsuchi, Goemon, etc. The only way to make her more consistent against these shields in the Arena is to bring a delay with you. I hear Christmas Alraune is a pretty good one.

Addressing Healing Issues Pairing With Freyja

2394 - Awoken Freyja
I really didn’t want to go into a possible leader pairing with Freyja — because that’s more work and stuff — but considering that healing is my biggest gripe about the Astaroth leader pair I felt I had to at least touch on the subject. The Astaroth-Freyja pair is a different story than the Raoh-Freyr pair, though. The Raoh team has high natural HP due to many of its best subs being physical and devils, meaning that the team will still have enough HP (easily 40k+) to deal with things like a DQ Hera preemptive. Whereas the Astaroth team is primarily healers, so the 1.5x HP multipler will leave the team struggling to hit 35k HP. Sure, latents can still allow the team to deal with most incoming damage hurdles, but since you’re sacrificing so much damage by switching to Freyja that it just seems better to go full tank and run Sylvie instead. The pairing certainly is viable, though, and I’d be interested to see if anyone runs the pair with success in the future.

Latent Tama Setup

2212 - Latent TAMADRA (Fire Dmg. Red.)2209 - Latent TAMADRA (Imp. RCV)2211 - Latent TAMADRA (Ext. Move Time)
A possible way to address some of the team’s issues are through latents. I’ve mentioned fire resist latents many times throughout this post and still think they’re the best choice, but they only apply to a subset of monsters in the Arena so it’s prudent to consider other options that are always useful. Stat latents aren’t great, but RCV latents are a possible way to improve healing and are applicable against all monsters. Decking out the entire team will raise the team RCV from 5,128 to 5,797. This raises total healing at six combos from 15,538 to 17,043; the numbers don’t look the most impressive, but a 10% healing improvement is at least worth thinking about. The last choice would be time extends. They don’t get much love, but improving your movement time by 1.5 seconds on a team with no time extends isn’t the worst thing ever.

2425 - Latent TAMADRA (Skill Delay Resist.)
I don’t see an obvious place to put skill delay resists on this team. Michael is probably the best choice so you can heal in an emergency. At least for the Arena, I don’t really see these latents being a worthwhile investment.

Conclusion

There are many more things I could look into, but I’m going to end the analysis here. Astaroth passes many of the tests the Arena presents with healing and maybe time extends being the only real points I’m worried about (I’d like some more hastes, too, but you can’t have everything). However good she might be, she’s not going to threaten Ra and Yomi Dragon anytime soon.

Is Game8’s rating justified? Maybe. I personally wouldn’t have ranked her this high from what I can tell on paper — she still doesn’t appear to be significantly better than Raoh — but until I’ve actually played with the team I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt. There are also other factors that could play into their grade, too, like co-op.

I’m not sure how much I would recommend making an Astaroth team specifically for the Arena. While this post has made me feel much better about the team and its capabilities to handle all the things the dungeon can throw at it, I’m just so used to facerolling the place with Ra Dragon that I can’t bring myself to recommend anything else besides maybe Yomi Dragon. However, I also recognize that this team might be many players’ best shot at farming the Arena at a decent clip without breaking the MP bank. I’d personally rather run Sakuya or Lucifer for a non-MP Arena lead, though.

Something that will likely throw a wrench in this analysis are the expected changes to the Arena that are coming on 1/12/16. It would only be prudent to expect more hurdles to be added to the dungeon (hopefully not too many that say: “hey, you should buy this shiny new MP Dragon!”). However, considering how far ahead NA is on the uevo schedule relative to other content, how long it took for us to get the original Arena and how much GungHo seems to enjoy coddling our player base, we should have more time than JP did to play with these uevos in the current Arena.

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32 thoughts on “A Look at Awoken Astaroth for the Arena

  1. For full boardchangers, perhaps offcolor subs like Xmas sonia and zuoh could be considered? Both have decent stats and their actives work well with astaroth.
    Zuoh’s active can be combined with astaroth’s to be a Green/Dark board and also could be used in conjunction with michael’s active to create Heart/Green board. He also has a haste which can help cycle other skills’ cd.
    I’ve also seen reco run xmas sonia on his astaorth team. Sure you can’t “fix” the board, but the 2 turn haste is pretty nice.

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    • I considered them, but didn’t think they were worth mentioning. You bring up a couple valid points so I’ll add them to the potential sub list, but I probably wouldn’t use either of them over Cauchemar or Meimei. On top of being off-color, Zuoh’s 0 RCV on a healing-deprived team is a pretty bad idea (at least Cauchemar has an auto-heal) and I don’t see a point in running Christmas Sonia for only a two-color board. Although the haste is indeed nice which makes her more realistic than Zuoh. Also, I don’t believe Zuoh has a haste unless it’s a recent JP change I’m not aware of. It’s unfortunate that they aren’t on-color and/or better fits because the team could certainly use their time extends. RSonia’s bind recovery is also nice. But I think the strength of the Astaroth team is that you aren’t forced to run a board changer and can run subs that cover weaknesses instead.

      I do find it humorous when people mention a streamer/YouTuber is running a certain team comp like it should apply to everyone; when it’s someone on the skill level of Paprika or reco they can get away with running a lot of things most people can’t since they get an ATK and RCV bonus just from being good. There is value in paying attention to their teams and learning from them, but many of their off the wall choices are just that.

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  2. Excellent analysis as always Setsu. I’m not sure that she has anything significantly better than I&I/Ryune or Thoria teams though. Is more damage really worth S tier when I&I and Thoria can farm Arena just as well? Maybe, IDK. I’m gonna keep at it on my I&I/Ryune team since I’m already 700 plusses invested. Too late to change gears now!

    Although, this analysis has me seriously considering building A.Asty as my next team… I have the exact team you’re discussing, and like you, I also have an inexplicable love of tank teams, so it may be worthmy time once I get my current team up and running. Heck, + eggs are so much cheaper now that a month of saved stones should equal a hyper or two next time 10x rolls around. Should be farming (failing) the arena by the end of February. Hopefully. 😛

    Maybe by then they’ll have announced the next set of MP dragons in JP. Crossing my fingers that the blue one will be OP in co-op mode…

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    • Yeah I don’t really see a huge reason why Astaroth is better than the Norse-based tank teams. I feel like she’s better outside the Arena, though, so maybe that is what’s playing into Game8’s rating?

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      • Yeah, I can see that. I don’t fully agree with it, but it makes sense I terms of Game8 at least. More damage=faster dungeon clearing. Seeing how Shivagon is still S tier, it’s clear that they value speed as a factor, but do they REALLY include speed as a factor for tank teams? It seems counter-intuitive, but that’s Game8 for ya. Still, it’s nice having a green row lead as S tier, it feels good being right about green rows becoming a thing a few months ago. 😀

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  3. I think you should calculate in Elize’s extra row (I was wondering why there was 17 rows when i made the team on PadGuide). By the time we have Awoken Astaroth, we will probably get the Valk buffs, unless, again, gungho times things hella badly in NA again (still no Star den, or metalitt descended)

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    • I don’t think it really matters? The damage calculations here are more for getting a ballpark idea, not for exact numbers. It doesn’t look like PADSpike is pulling in the JP awakening sets and doesn’t have the ability to edit awakenings.

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      • Yeah, PadSpike uses the data from PadHerder, which is NA-only unless the monster only exists in JP. Would the ability to edit awakenings be useful? I could add it, but my thought is that if the monster doesn’t exist in NA yet, you’d only be using it for theorycrafting, in which case a ballpark is probably good enough.

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        • Not certain if you have an advertising revenue model as I’ve never used it, but judging from Reddit and the puzzle and dragons forums there’s enough JP client players that it might be worth your while to see about pulling from a JP datasource and then giving people the option to do either NA or JP client.

          Just a thought anyway :).

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        • Yeah, I don’t think it’s a necessary change.

          Using PadSpike was really convenient and I plan to continue using it for almost all of my future damage calculations. Since I caught your ear with the latent awakenings (which I actually used for this post and it was great), I may as well try my luck to get some more changes in:
          – Being able to link to a specific team and combo setup via URL. I can see this possibly being a pain in the ass, though.
          – Healing numbers.
          – When double-clicking monster ID to edit it, highlight all the text in the field so I don’t have to do it manually. This really only applies to when the text field contains “Double-click to change” as a double-click will only highlight a single word of it. Just erasing that text would work too.
          – Pressing enter in the monster ID text field should commit the input instead of adding a newline. Tabbing to the next ID field would be cool, too.
          – Being able to remove a combo line. This doesn’t matter too much since setting the orb # to 0 works, but would be nice visually.

          Thanks for this great tool!

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          • I’m really pleased that you like the tool and are getting good use out of it! With all the advice and improvement I’ve gotten from reading the blog, it’s nice to be able to contribute something back.

            As for the enhancements:
            – You can already link to a specific PadHerder team: http://padspike.isuptonogood.com/?team_id=169101, though not a custom team set up through the interface. As for combo setup, unless it’s something really weird, I’d like to add it as one of the “common combos” so that everyone can use it. Feel free to tell me what setups you want, they’re pretty easy to add.
            – Healing numbers is next on my list of things to do.
            – The other stuff seems not too bad; I’ll look at cleaning that up when I have a moment.

            I’m also considering adding an “export to HTML” button that would generate those tables you use, but that might be a little longer in coming.

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            • I thought it would be cool to be able to link a specific team and combo setup, like when I reference a particular Astaroth team and board setup, it would be nice to link directly to the PadSpike page so people could tweak the team themselves. If it’s too much work it’s not a big deal. Export to HTML would be a nice alternative, though. I was already considering writing an XSLT or something to convert PadSpike to my table format.

              I would add the 20-10 three row board setup to the common combos. 3 rows, 3 other 3-orb matches.

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          • Healing numbers are in, and clicking on a field now selects all the text (just in time for me to use it myself running Scarlet, and it was an unexpectedly huge upgrade in usability). Hitting tab will cause the entry to take effect, but it won’t move to the next field (yet).

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  4. Hello satsu, I’ve been looking into Awoken Asta teams since I have all the good row green cards. Currently one of the main teams I’ve seen run arena included awoken parv in that sub slot that was first mentioned. It would definitely take care of the rcv problem and allow for the enhanced orbs to be broken into green with gvalk. Could be something to maybe add. I know it’s not optimal for damage but in some cases with rows you will also be making a tpa and 2 tpa could be good.

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  5. I know it might not be Ideal and I’m not a fan of holiday REMS normally, but what about X-Mas Alarune as that flex spot. 1 wood row + 3 turn delay active. HP is meh, but recovery is solid and you get two more enhanced heart out of the deal.

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  6. Pingback: Puzzle & Dragons North American tier list (Jan. 25, 2016): Awoken Astaroth – Puzzle & Dragons Tier List (NA)

  7. Hi there! I really love your in-depth analysis of the Awoken Astaroth team. I do say I just recently, rolled her and I am intrigued even though I do not have all the pieces to her team. Nevertheless, I think it’s doable. I only have Freyja as the main piece but for the other subs I plan to use Moon Flower Artemis, Kushinadahime, and Australis. Even though Artemis and Australis are neither a devil or healer type, they bring a total of 8 rows plus good active skills for burst. What do you think of it?

    P.S. Definitely, love your blog!

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    • It really depends where you are in the game, but for the most part a sub missing Astaroth’s full set of bonuses is really bad. Unless you’re in the early- or maybe mid-game I wouldn’t advise pursuing that team, but if that’s the best team you have then you have to work with it.

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