Abbreviation: HRB

Harbinger's only other appearance was in Etrian Odyssey V, with two differing specialties. Deathbringer, which had them focusing on inflicting and then exploiting ailments, and Deathguard, more geared towards supporting the team through debuffs and healing. Their Miasma Armor mechanics were awkward, but if you could get them under control, a Harbinger of either flavor was fairly effective.

Since Deathbringer's role is largely occupied by Nightseeker, the Harbingers of Nexus are of the Deathguard variety. On top of great debuffs that aid offense, defense and turn speed, they're one of two things in the game that can aid allies' infliction chances, and are great at defending and healing the team. Their offensive abilities and ailment infliction aren't especially potent, but a properly used Harbinger gets enough free turns that they can use those skills. Miasma Armor also makes them incredibly fast, making them a great item bot if you don't have a Ninja, Survivalist, or Farmer.



Strong Points: TP, WIS
Good Points: INT, VIT, LUC
Average Points: STR, AGI
Weak Points: HP

Equippable Weapons: Sword, Scythe
Equippable Armor: Light Armor, Cloth Armor

Common Passives:

Skills: Force

Boost: Endless Armor
For 3 turns, Miasma Armor's duration will not decrease, and Miasma Armor cannot be removed.
Ehhhhh? Early on, Endless Armor doesn't actually do a whole lot unless you're spamming Atonement or Soul Transfer, it's more a convenience than anything. Once you get Miasma Wall and Spirit Barrier, though, it becomes a hell of a lot more useful!

Then you get Enduring Armor and it goes back to being a convenience again.
Sometimes, you get caught with your proverbial pants down and your party gets their literal pants blasted off by an attack, and you need several uses of Miasma Armor dispellants in a row, but you don't have enough Miasma Armor to support it. Endless Armor comes in handy then. But unless your Harbinger is spending a lot of turns in a row spamming Reaps that's not very frequent, so...
Could potentially be helpful in reversing a bad position by letting you spam Atonement/Soul Transfer, but in general this effect is so niche, and Miasma Tsunami is so good, that in most cases you're probably just going to use this as a free 3-turn duration extender leading up to Tsunami, since that's something you want to time the use of to get the most out of its effect anyways.

Break: Miasma Tsunami
For one turn, reduces all enemies' damage dealt by 35%, evasion by 100%, action speed by 60%, and increases the damage they take by 35%, and their chance of having ailments and binds inflicted on them by 40%.
Hoo boy. So, this is basically Crusade from EO2U, but with weaker damage modifiers, and extra effects attached. The best way to make use of Miasma Tsunami is constructing a party that can take the best advantage of all of the effects at once--heavy burst damage, inaccurate attacks, and important disables, all of those are good to time alongside Miasma Tsunami.
Since their Boost is mostly cruft when the battle's going your way, you can bust out Miasma Tsunami in those situations. Hell, even if you're awkwardly hobbling along, it might be worth using anyway. You get to reduce the damage from a turn, and make it more likely that the party'll land crucial disables. It's pretty powerful.
The easiest way to use it is to just unleash all your damage breaks alongside Tsunami for a huge burst turn, but it can also be used to inflict something, launch a drive, whatever. The amplifying effect is huge, and if you have a Harbinger in your party, you should definitely come up with a plan to get the best use out of it.

Skills: Novice

Eroding Miasma

Reduces all enemies' defense for a set amount of turns.
Eroding Miasma functions as a buff to the entire party that takes up one of the enemy's three debuff slots, instead of one buff slot on each party member. Generally, regardless of how you build your Harbinger, I think Eroding Miasma's a good skill to invest in. More damage is never a bad thing.

Also, exactly one boss has behavior that counters debuffs, whereas quite a few have behaviors that cause them to become more dangerous based on party buffs. So, y'know, there's that.
Defense debuff is universally useful. Even though it's weaker than most attack buffs, keeping it on the enemy is also a lot easier than keeping buffs on your own characters. It's a fundamental move that you'll be using from start to finish.

Stifling Miasma

Reduces all enemies' attack for a set amount of turns.
Stifling Miasma is...less good. Attack debuffs aren't inherently bad, but Stifling Miasma's low value kind of hampers its usefulness. If you want higher defense through buffs/debuffs, having a Sovereign with Rally Order is your best bet, I feel.
The 10% deficit on attack debuffs compared to defense buffs is a lot more impactful than the 10% deficit on defense debuffs compared to attack buffs (basically, Eroding Miasma is generally around 10% less effective than attack buffs, but Stifling Miasma is always 40% less effective than defense buffs). If your party can't make use of many other debuffs, having it on can't hurt, and it can be occasionally useful to nullify attack buffs (though prereq level is enough for that purpose), but it's generally not a great way to use a debuff slot.

Sluggish Miasma

Reduces all enemies' evasion and action speed for a set amount of turns.
If the equipment accuracy bonus bug didn't exist, I'd be a bit kinder to Sluggish Miasma. But it does, so accuracy buffs are devalued a lot by it, so Sluggish Miasma sucks. The speed debuff could be nice if you have a Medic who you want to make sure can act before enemies, but that's a pretty narrow use case.
I'm of a different mind when it comes to Sluggish Miasma. The evasion's not the hook, if you ask me, it's the action speed. Forcing all enemies in a random encounter to act after your party so you can snipe the threatening ones, or forcing boss adds to act after so you can take them out before they do something dangerous, or hell, even just forcing bosses to act after your damage dealers so your attacks aren't interrupted by potential binds or ailments... While I don't prioritize it, there's a lot of situations where it can be very helpful.

Also worth noting that combining Survivalist's Boost with this will probably let Imperial Drives or Charged Shots go before most enemies.
If you have an Imperial or a Gunner, having high levels of this (and some speed tinkering on your Imperial and Gunner) can let them get off drives and charged shots before enemies, which is pretty awesome. It also can sometimes lets you go before counterattacks (getting an elemental attack off before a certain stony asshole prepares to counter them is always a hoot), though that doesn't happen often enough to justify maxing a skill for. The evasion debuff isn't very strong, and you'll need another source to help Ricochet or Helm Splitter to hit reliably without goggles. Conclusion: Get it if you want to support an Imperial/Gunner; keep it at prereq otherwise for anything that tries to use evasion buffs.

Paralyzing Reap

Deals melee STR-based cut damage to one row of enemies. If the user is in the Miasma Armor state, attempts to inflict paralysis on hit targets.
The Reaps give Harbingers some offensive utility, through (admittedly kinda low) damage, and row-target disables. The disabling part is unfortunately hampered by Harbinger's lower STR compared to their LUC, but oh well. Paralysis is thoroughly middling as far as disables go--sometimes it buys you a free turn, sometimes it does absolutely nothing. The Reaps only cost 6 SP each to max out, so grab them if you want.
I'm not a fan of most of the Reaps. Harbinger's STR isn't very good, so their infliction rates suffer. These should've used INT instead of STR... At least they're cheap-ish?
While Harbinger kept their status reaps, they're more or less just kinda there. The base rate kinda sucks a lot even when maxed, and Harbinger's stat spread doesn't really help matters (though they do get status ATK up which helps a little). The damage is also pretty bad. Maxing a reap or two gives your Harbinger some AoE damage, which can help with randoms, but maxing all of them out is a heavy SP investment (on a class that's already very strapped for SP) for rather paltry returns, so just pick one or two status you like and get them if you want. Or just skip them altogether because Harbingers already have a million other skills they want to get, most of which make far more impact than what generally amount to inferior versions of gas items that you can spam for TP and has a tiny bit of damage attached.

For this reap in particular, Paralyze is pretty inconsistent, even more so than blind, but it can sometimes stop nasty support moves (unlike blind) and costs the least amount of SP to get. I generally think blind is a bit more useful, but this is not a bad choice either if you must get a status reap.

Toxic Reap

Deals melee STR-based cut damage to one row of enemies. If the user is in the Miasma Armor state, attempts to inflict poison on hit targets.
Decent for encounter clearing! It won't wipe out an entire row of enemies on its own, but you know what they say: every little bit helps. I'm probably not going to focus on it heavily in the LP, but depending on your party composition, Toxic Reap can provide decent value.
The poison value here is upsettingly low. Caltrops and Poison Circle both can hit multiple targets as well, but their infliction chances are far higher or equal and their damage is way higher. And that's not to mention Venom Throw + Spread Throw... But at least it's decent.
If you max it out, the poison damage it does is pretty respectible in its own right; it doesn't compare to Caltrops or Poison Circle, but it is more damage than Poison Gas (and is available far earlier). On the other hand, poison does nothing to hinder the enemies' attacks. Also, unlike the other reaps, you really need to max this out to make good use of it, as the poison damage is pretty futile at non-max levels. Still, if I really want a reap attack for randoms, I'd pick this one as my choice just because it's probably the most random-oriented one of the bnuch.

Miasma Armor

Places the user in the Miasma Armor state for a set amount of turns. Automatically places the user in the Miasma Armor state at the start of battle. The Miasma Armor state increases the user's speed and enables secondary effects of various skills.
Max out Miasma Armor as soon as you can. At the very least, drop one of your Harbinger's initial 3 SP into it, because it's absolutely necessary for them to function at all. I recommend maxing it out as soon as possible since the speed multiplier jumps up at level 4, taking your Harbinger from "annoyingly slow" to "pretty fast."
Will boost any class' action speed significantly, even at half level. It will require upkeep, though.
The speed bonus is very important, because the miasmas all have fairly low action speed and needs the bonus to stand a good chance of actually going before your party's attacks. Max it as soon as possible.

Endless Shroud

When the user uses a debuff skill, they have a chance to enter the Miasma Armor state automatically.
If you're making use of the debuffs, you'll want to max out Endless Shroud once they're all at high levels, since it basically means you'll combine two skills into one: Miasma Armor, and the debuff you used. Don't grab it early, though, 8 SP is a lot of lost utility early on.
The fact that it works with any debuff skills, not just miasma skills, means that it works pretty well with other classes' skills. Keep this in mind for whatever subclass you choose, or if you want to choose Harbinger as another character's subclass.


Requires the Miasma Armor state to use. Ends the Miasma Armor state, restores all party members' HP, and attempts to remove all ailments from all party members.
Atonement is a good healing skill, it's just straight-up good...ending Miasma Armor aside. Good heal amount for an all-party heal, has a chance to remove ailments (though, unfortunately, not binds), and it's fast, especially with a maxed-out Miasma Armor.
You look at the fact its ailment clear isn't guaranteed and think, oh, I shouldn't use this for all clearing. But no, it's actually fairly reliable. At least, it's never let me down.

Oh right, I do the subclass commentary. This is good for healing, ish. If you have a Medic using Deja Vu plus Refresh or Unbind, this is a good way to heal the party without messing up Deja Vu.
If you just need the HP healing, it heals for plenty even at a fairly low level. If you want the ailment clear to be reliable, however, then you'll need to max it. This is a good skill, but Harbinger is very strapped for SP, so you'll really want to think about when you're ready to put more points in it.

Skills: Veteran

Wilting Miasma

Increases the chance of all enemies being inflicted with ailments, and reduces their chance of recovering from ailments at the end of the turn, for a set amount of turns.

Binding Miasma

Increases the chance of all enemies being inflicted with binds, and reduces their chance of recovering from binds at the end of the turn, for a set amount of turns.
Wilting Miasma and Binding Miasma are both super good investments for any parties that make heavy use of ailments or binds. Not only does that infliction chance increase go quite a ways in a game where base chances tend to be fairly low, the recovery chance decrease will, on average, give you an extra turn of an ailment/bind sticking, which can make or break a fight in certain circumstances.

If you have a party that relies on both ailments and binds, though, I'd recommend prioritizing Wilting Miasma over Binding Miasma, since ailments often tend to be more immediately useful than binds.
It's actually pretty difficult for FOEs and bosses to shake ailments or binds off at all before the fifth turn if you have these plus a high-LUC party.
I actually find the recovery reduction effect to be even more impactful than the infliction increase effect, which is nice since that part works pretty well even at low levels, making these skills a rare, merciful exception to the whole "Harbinger skills need investment to really function" shtick that will plague your Harbinger's existence for a long time. The same quality also makes them pretty nice as subclass skills if your party makes use of inflictions (and doesn't have a Harbinger main class already).

Darkness Reap

Deals melee STR-based cut damage to one row of enemies. If the user is in the Miasma Armor state, attempts to inflict blind on hit targets.
Blind's okay. Not the best ailment, not the worst ailment. Bosses tend to be neutral to it, so it's An Option for tagging an enemy with an ailment so that, for example, War Magi can get the extra effects of their War Edge skills.
It's a bit more easier to inflict than paralyze, has a greater chance of kicking in, and helps your attacks hit, but it does nothing to hinder support skills, and costs several points of prerequisite whereas Paralyzing Reap costs none (though this is a moot issue if you want Chaos Reap/Fatal Reap as well). If you want a reap that helps out both in randoms and in boss battles, this would probably be a good choice.

Chaos Reap

Deals melee STR-based cut damage to one row of enemies. If the user is in the Miasma Armor state, attempts to inflict panic on hit targets.
Ouch. Chaos Reap deals more damage than the other Reaps, but it costs more TP, and has a worse chance of inflicting its ailment, as panic inflicters tend to. If Chaos Reap is your only way of inflicting panic... I'd still recommend Confuse Gasses over it, since the base chance is the same, and they rely exclusively on LUC.
Unless you want to squeeze in some extra damage, anyway.
As strong as Panic is, the base chance sucks too much for me to want to rely on it to any degree. Still, Panic is strong, so if you really don't want to settle for an inconsistent disable, then go ahead and take it.

Black Shroud

When the user is in the Miasma Armor state, reduces the damage they take.
If you find your Harbinger being fragile--as is probably the case if you've put them in the front--then feel free to grab Black Shroud. If you don't have a pressing need for it, though, it can wait a long while, until you have spare SP.
I'd say put a point in it early either way. 10% is pretty hefty already.

Soul Transfer

Requires the Miasma Armor state to use. Ends the Miasma Armor state, and attempts to revive all dead party members.
Hard pass. The effective chance is way too low for Soul Transfer to be of any worth at all.
Hard pass here too. Throw a damn nectar.
If you must have this skill, max it as soon as possible, or it will basically never work; ever.

Black Wave

If the user is in the Miasma Armor state, at the end of the turn, restores their TP.
A nice-to-have, but it's not a particularly big restore. Grab it if you have 4 SP to spare, by all means, but I wouldn't prioritize it over active skills.
+5TP each turn is pretty big, in my opinion. I maxed it out early and it let me max out other skills way earlier than usual.
It's basically guaranteed to be there all the time, which helps with skill spamming greatly, but Harbinger is just so strapped for SP that they'll be hard pressed to find spare ones to throw here. On the other hand, they don't tend to be so strapped for TP unless they're going for Ephemeral Reap. Basically, just get it later unless you want Ephemeral Reap, in which case you'll probably want to sacrifice other skills a bit to get this early because Ephemeral Reap is really, really expensive TP-wise.

Spirit Absorb

When the user uses a debuff skill, restores their HP. The healing from Spirit Absorb can increase the user's HP beyond their normal maximum. This overheal is removed at the end of the turn.
I was confused by Spirit Absorb in EO5, and I'm still confused by it now. It's a nice idea in theory, but the fact that the overheal only lasts one turn makes Spirit Absorb feel unattractive. It's even worse since, unlike EO5, you don't need to be constantly spamming debuffs to fuel Ephemeral Reap.
Contributes to Harbinger's tankiness even more by giving them a buffer to lessen damage on turns that they debuff, or letting them skip on Medica-ing themselves by just refreshing a debuff. As a subclass, if the class is gonna be using debuffs a lot (like Medic), it has much the same effect.
It's a fairly nice bit of upkeep, and that's about it. Unfortunately, "a fairly nice bit of upkeep" faces very hard competition with the rest of Harbinger's skillset, and you probably won't have the chance to invest in it until much later.

Skills: Master

Death Tolerance

Gives the user a chance to nullify debuffs and ailments directed at them.
Straight-up ailment (and debuff I guess) nullification is good to have on a support class. Again, a nice-to-have once your actives are where you want them.
Same deal with a lot of Harbinger passives. It's nice to have, but not so nice that you'll have the chance to really invest in them until much later.

Ephemeral Reap

Deals multiple instances of melee STR-based cut damage to one enemy. The number of hits is equal to how many debuffs the target is afflicted with.

If the target has no debuffs, Ephemeral Reap will do nothing.
Laid down a full set of debuffs on an enemy? Have your Harbinger contribute some damage! It's not going to be impressive, but it's decent for a class that's heavily support-slanted. And unlike EO5, Ephemeral Reap no longer purges debuffs from the target, so you lose nothing (except TP) for using it!
should've been int based why is it str and not int i don't get it help
The damage it deals is sorta OK, though not really something that you can make an effective party out of. It certainly tends to contribute more than trying to inflict something with 40% base chance, and so can make a nice skill of choice on any free turns you get. If you have a frontline slot open, getting it isn't the worst of ideas, though watch out for that TP cost.

Fatal Reap

Deals melee STR-based cut damage to one enemy. Attempts to instantly kill the target.
Fatal Reap is good for battles where you don't have time to lay down debuffs or disables, and just want to deal some appreciable damage to one enemy, and have a chance to immediately erase them.
It's also good for getting frustrated about not being able to land ID with it for conditionals!
It no longer has any sleep bombing application, and is now just a damage skill with instant death attached. 500% isn't a lot of damage for a support class, so it's mostly just something to use for instant death, and I don't really like that 25% base chance. There are some applications of instant death in postgame, though, so you'll want to max it out before then.

Miasma Wall

Requires the Miasma Armor state to use. Ends the Miasma Armor state, and attempts to nullify ailments and binds inflicted on party members.

Spirit Barrier

Requires the Miasma Armor state to use. Ends the Miasma Armor state, and attempts to nullify debuffs, stuns, and instant death inflicted on party members.
Miasma Wall and, to a lesser extent, Spirit Barrier are extremely powerful utility skills, for reasons that are very obvious on their face, I feel. Spirit Barrier's a lot more situational, but a lot of endgame bosses can have inopportune stuns, nasty debuffs, or terrifying instant death that'll leave you wishing you had it maxed out.
Oh my god Spirit Barrier blocking debuffs is a FUCKING GODSEND. It, Barrier and the opposing buff are the only things that can do that, but Spirit Barrier has the unique advantage of preventing the debuff from touching down at all, and it has a much higher chance of working on a lot more targets.

also miasma wall is super good too
If you have an AI writeup for whatever you're fighting in front of you, which you should given that you're reading this LP, then these skills can be a godsend if your party otherwise doesn't have many good ways of recovering from mass inflictions. Unfortunately, these skills aren't very reliable unless you have maxed them out, and they aren't very spammable without Enduring Armor either. You'll need to decide whether you want to sacrifice other skills to get them running as soon as possible, or sacrifice these to focus on more generally useful skills. Then again, that holds true for just about any other Harbinger skills. Isn't playing an SP starved class great? Of the two, I'd say Miasma Wall is the more important one. Debuffs can be cleared away with Unihorns if necessary (and don't prevent skill use/character control), and instant death is really rare. There are some really nasty debuffs in the endgame that are difficult to negate with buffs, however, so you'll want Spirit Barrier eventually.

Enduring Armor

Skills which end the Miasma Armor state will instead reduce its duration.
If you're making heavy use of Atonement, Miasma Wall, or Spirit Barrier--and, believe me, you will, in the postgame--max out Enduring Armor immediately. Letting you use those skills consecutively without having to have Endless Armor active is extremely powerful. Combine it with a maxed out Endless Shroud, and you can keep enemies persistently debuffed and have all the utility skill uses you could want, without having to ever have your Harbinger drop out of the Miasma Armor state.
Practically worthless on a subclass, however.
This makes those support skills so much easier to use it's not even funny. As SP starved as Harbingers tend to be, this one should really be a priority unless you rarely use those skills.

Table of Contents
Support the LPs on Patreon
Buy Me a Coffee at