Abbreviation: HRO

As the only new class in Nexus, one would hope Hero would be an exciting class. Those hopes are met in spades; Hero is a powerful mix of offense and defense, with your choice of equipment focus determining how much stock you put in each of those; a sword-focused Hero relentlessly tears into enemies while gradually healing the party, while a shield-focused one will protect and heal the party while maintaining damage output. They do have a downside; as their name implies, a Hero will often be the centerpiece of the party, nigh-on requiring it to be built around it, that or be adaptable enough to accomodate them. If you're willing to field that, though, you'll likely not be disappointed.



Strong Points: HP, STR, VIT, WIS
Normal Points: TP, AGI
Weak Points: INT
Very Weak Points: LUC

Equippable Weapons: Sword
Equippable Armor: Heavy Armor, Light Armor

Common Passives: Chop (Novice)

Force Skills

Boost: Brave Heart
For 3 turns, increases the Hero's chance of creating afterimages by 50%, as well all damage dealt by the Hero's afterimages by 130%.
Hi so this is comically strong. With Afterimage level 10, Brave Heart guarantees that the user will generate afterimages after every action. Also that damage bonus is really goddamn big, and compensates for afterimages not being able to duplicate buffs, and then some.
Assuming that you have afterimage on two of three turns, the damage boost comes out to 71% on average. Compare that to the standard 40% boost from other force boosts. Of course, the lack of buffs on afterimages means that the number is smaller in practice, but it's still by far the strongest Force Boost in the game.

This is also the reason why a 4-headed party with Hero in it is a thing - you can have even more afterimages out with a smaller party, and this Force Boost becomes even more bonkers crazy.

Break: Miracle Edge

Deals melee STR-based cut damage to all enemies. Restores all party members' HP. The healing from Miracle Edge can increase party members' HP beyond their normal maximum. This overheal is removed at the end of the turn.
An all-enemy nuke force break. This one has some defensive utility, and can work as a method to give your party a bit of cushion for a big attack. However, in terms of its value compared to potentially getting another Brave Heart... Yeah, that's not a favorable comparison.
It has the highest damage multiplier out of all multi-target Force Breaks and is a pretty good panic button, but a big strike against it is that using it ends Force Boost immediately, preventing your afterimage from getting Brave Heart boost on that turn. If you have an afterimage out, using this can actually result in losing damage. Consider carefully whether you really, really need the damage or heal right away before using it.

Novice Skills


Gives the user a chance to create an afterimage when using any attack skill. The afterimage is a copy of the user, stat-wise, with a modifier applied to their HP. On the turn after they are created, afterimages will use the same skill that created them. At the end of that turn, they will vanish.

Afterimages require an empty party slot to be created.
The core of the Hero skillset. A massive damage boost over time (even though afterimages don't copy buffs or states), and one with good utility if using the shield tree. Max out as soon as possible.
While it brings up some complications vis-a-vis building a team with a Hero, Afterimage is a damage boost skill with a very similar function to NSK Follow Trace or GNR Multi-Shot, but an extra intermediate step that both makes it feel much cooler and adds a lot of mechanical snags that give it extra, very funky uses.

Subclass-wise, classes with cooldowns or timing mechanics like Imperial and Ronin love to take Afterimage. It won't do things like stack stance duration on Ronin or fill Imperial up with TP, but it activates much more commonly than Multi-Shot and Follow Trace.
The importance of having this skill maxed as soon as possible cannot be overstated. Low level afterimage not only has a low chance of being created, but the max HP penalty means that they are liable to die to a stiff breeze. Once you have a point in all the active skills you want (as well as possibly Encourage), get to maxing this skill immediately.

Mirage Sword

Deals ranged STR-based cut damage to one enemy. Increases the user's chance of creating an Afterimage from this skill.
An okay early damage skill. Amps up your chance of creating an afterimage, costs not much TP, and is ranged, so if you have a three-person front line, your afterimage will still deal full damage to front-row enemies.

It gets outclassed before long, to be sure, but it serves its purpose well early on.
It's only worth maxing if you want a reliable feeder for Charge Image. It's a nice utility skill to have, but the damage scaling is kind of terrible. This is a recurring problem for most of Hero's sword skills, unfortunately.

Wide Bravery

Deals melee STR-based cut damage to one enemy. If Wide Bravery activates before the target performs an action, either due to speed or being unable to act due to ailments or binds, Wide Bravery will attack all enemies instead.
A source of multi-target coverage for Hero, and one that isn't that shabby. Deals a good amount of damage, and is available from the get-go.

You'll want to have enemy action speed debuffs or leg binds available later in the game if you want it to reliably hit multiple targets, though.
240% all-target damage that you can have as early as level 1 is completely insane, and makes Hero extremely overpowered early on. The speed requirement can make it awkward to use, but even without lockdown you can simply equip your Hero as lightly as possible to get around it. Even though it scales terribly like most Hero sword skills (and thus not really worth putting more points in than as a prerequisite until very late game), it's something that you will probably be using against random encounters for the entire game.

Frigid Slash

Deals melee STR-based cut + ice damage to one enemy, with splash damage.
Ice damage. Yay. Lets your Hero get around enemies that are resistant to cut early on, unless that enemy also resists ice, which I'm pretty sure doesn't actually happen.

Once you get to Veteran, though, you get a far better skill for bypassing cut resistances, so...oh well.
There's a surprising amount of things early on that just resist all phys stuff. Frigid Slash will make ice cubes out of them.


When the user uses an attack skill, they restore all party members' HP.

Encourage does not activate on Link skills, Chase skills, or counterattack skills.
Extremely good passive. Free passive healing whenever your Hero uses attack skills will add up to a lot over the course of a battle, and since Heroes have a high natural HP growth, that percentage of max HP restore will do a lot of work as well. A must-have.
You may have eyed the highest-HP class in the game, Pugilist, and thought "oh, easy subclass". No. Its numbers are adjusted to account for the fact that sometimes it activates twice a turn, thanks to afterimages. But a shield Hero will love this skill even more--since it activates at the end of the turn, it'll always be patching up whatever damage the party took.
With all that said, level 1 Encourage does fall off after a while. If you want to keep the healing relevant beyond early game, you will need to put more points in it from time to time.

Heroic Bonds

When the party's average of current percentage of HP remaining is above a certain threshold, the user's attack and action speed are increased.
Heroic Bonds is a strong passive, but I'm not sold on the idea of getting it early on. Your tools for keeping your party above the HP threshold are limited until Veteran at the very earliest, and whenever Heroic Bonds isn't active, the skill points you put in it are basically wasted. Which is y'know...bad.

Once you have reliable ways of keeping your party topped off, though, Heroic Bonds becomes very worth the investment.
Even at level 1 it's a nice way to help Wide Bravery outspeed enemies reliably in random encounters, as long as you remember to keep everyone healed before every battle. You will need to invest in both this skill and your party's healing (or lockdown) if you want to reliably keep this bonus in big fights, though.
Physical Shield

Deals melee STR-based bash damage to one enemy. Uses triple the user's equipped shield's DEF value as a replacement for ATK. Until Physical Shield activates, all party members take reduced physical damage.
Hey, look, our first Shield skill. These are an alternate way to build Heroes if you are willing to give up some damage in exchange for defensive utility. Physical Shield itself is a good skill to just spam, since odds are good whatever's going to hit you on a given turn will probably be physical.

Note the part about using ShieldDEF * 3 as a replacement for ATK, though. This is, generally, a downside of the shield skills: while shields often have enough DEF that they don't compare too unfavorably with swords, they can't be upgraded, and you can sometimes end up with a bit of a drought between getting a shield and when the next one becomes available.

Then you get the Pain Shield, which has +100 DEF (and also a downside but let's ignore the downside), meaning it's a 300 ATK weapon, meaning you get to experience the BIG CHUNKY build. I'll talk about BIG CHUNKY when I have access to it.
It's worth noting that the defense bonus stacks (multiplicatively) if multiple characters (afterimage included) are using it. While the reduction on this skill looks weaker than Protector's guards, that goes away when you have an afterimage out. Oh, and it doesn't actually use up TP until it activates, meaning that if you use this on the same turn you end the battle with another attack, you get protection over that turn for free.

Clear Mind

Only usable when the user is afflicted with an ailment or at least one bind. Removes any ailments, and a set number of binds from the user, and restores TP.
Ehhhh... Clear Mind is useful for extreme emergencies, especially if your Hero is your only semi-defensive support, but it's not worth investing in early.

Skills: Veteran

Charge Image

Dismisses all afterimages created by the user. Until the end of the next turn, the user's damage and chance of creating afterimages are increased.

The number of afterimages does not affect Charge Image's effect.

Afterimages generated from attacks affected by Charge Image do not receive Charge Image's benefits.
Charge Image is decent for offense-focused Heroes in the midgame, since it makes afterimage generation consistent, which increases your damage output overall. Once you get Dark Image, though, Charge Image loses its appeal.
It's one of few Charge skills in the game. An Imperial subbing Hero or a Hero subbing Imperial will both want this, as it allows them to charge their cooldown skill and increase the chance that it'll be duplicated through an Afterimage. Those are effects Dark Image can't replicate. Ronin can do much the same with Swallow Strike.
Spamming it on every attack is actually going to lower your damage output if you have any sort of buffs, so it's only good for skills you cannot spam (like Guard Rush or drives), want to save TP, or want to ensure that you can get in a double shield on a predicted boss nuke turn. If you don't think you'll get in those kinds of situations often, then leave it at low level as it can then be a fast "delete afterimage" button for when you don't want one out (like when going after a conditional).

Graceful Image

When an afterimage of the user is present, and the user uses a skill, the user is refunded a percentage of the TP spent on that skill.
Get this. This basically gives Hero all the TP they'll ever need.
If your skill activates twice due to Multi-shot or Follow Trace, this will activate twice, too!
Spark Blade

Deals melee STR-based cut damage to one enemy, then deals ranged STR-based volt damage to all enemies. The volt attack's damage is increased based on the initial target's cut vulnerability--the lower the target's cut vulnerability, the higher the volt attack's damage.

The exact formula for the cut vulnerability-based increase to the volt attack's damage is unknown.
Spark Blade has two primary purposes: big damage against enemies that resist cut damage, and cheesing one particularly annoying boss.
This skill has the nasty tendency to completely maim entire formations as long as there is a cut-resistant conduit, and is one of the best utility skill to have in random battles (as well as a good argument to use a sword and at least invest enough SP to learn this skill even if you're mainly going to use shield skills). Unfortunately, very few bosses and FOEs resist cut, making this skill useless against most of them unless your party spams Petrify as a strategy.

Burst Blade

Deals multiple instances of melee STR-based cut damage to one enemy. For each enemy that is present in the battle besides the target, one hit is added to the maximum amount of hits.
Decent midgame damage. I don't have a lot else to say about this.
It's the best damaging skill Hero has outside of Regiment Rave (which requires party co-operation) and Guard Rush (which has a cooldown), and it can really smack adds-summoning bosses around if you get lucky with the number of hits. It can actually be worth maxing at some point, though it's not really a high priority skill.
Heroic Steel

When the party's average of current percentage of HP remaining is below a certain threshold, the user's defense and chance of being targeted are increased.
While Heroic Steel isn't that beneficial for the Hero themself, it combines well with the skill that comes after it.
While this could be useful to a class like Protector, Survivalist or Ninja who likes to have aggro, at half level the threshold is too low and the aggro and damage reduction are still accounting for afterimages. Subclass-wise, pass.
I really don't like this skill, as it tends to activate only when your party is badly hurt, at which point you generally need to get them out of the red pronto. Also, it's nearly useless at low levels and needs to be maxed out if you really want to benefit from it. Ask yourself: Do you really have 6 SP to burn on something that helps out a little in emergency situations? If the answer is yes, then go ahead and take it. Otherwise, ignore it.

Great Bravery

Passively gives the user and any afterimages of theirs a chance to take damage for a party member whose percentage of HP remaining is below a certain threshold.

If both the user and an afterimage succeed at covering the party member, the afterimage is prioritized for taking the damage.
Eh. If you're building your Hero solely as a defensive support, then Great Bravery can do some good work. If you're relying on your Hero for damage, though, this can be a pretty big liability.
Same issue as Heroic Steel, but even worse.
This is really something that only maybe helps out on multi-hit skills, because seriously, do you really want to leave low health allies around in hope of an one-third chance of this skill going off? I certainly don't. Only take it if you really have surplus SP to burn and nowhere else to throw them in, and only if you don't mind occasionally sacrificing your afterimage to it.
Elemental Shield

Deals melee STR-based bash damage to one enemy. Uses triple the user's equipped shield's DEF value as a replacement for ATK. Until Physical Shield activates, all party members take reduced elemental damage.
It's Physical Shield! But it reduces elemental damage!


Removes any ailments and binds from other party members in the user's row, transfers them to the user, and restores the user's Force.

If no ailments or binds are transferred, no Force is restored.
Pass. Giving up multiple turns is not worth a bit of Force.
Could potentially combine with a War Magus using Displace to create a pseudo-Stigmata. Could also just cast Refresh or use some Thericas or something.
Having 1 point in it can be nice as an emergency group disable removal if several important party members got tagged or something, but I wouldn't count on it as a strategy. Besides, Hero's terrible LUC means that they're most likely to be disabled first.

New Challenger

Immediately begins a battle. After the battle, there is an unknown chance to immediately begin another battle. Enemies in battles started by New Challenger have an increased chance of being rare breeds.

New Challenger will do nothing if you are standing on a tile with no danger value--i.e. a tile you cannot start battles on.
Could be worth a point for the many fetch quests in the game, plus you can use this to make FOEs move once without actually moving yourself, but there are better methods for actually grinding.

Master Skills

Dark Image

Gives afterimages generated by the user to not disappear at the end of turns.
Now this is the good shit. This obsoletes Charge Image, and not only is it a big damage increase if your Hero is offensively-focused, it provides big defensive utility for if they're relying on the Shield skills.
Has the potential to give you an Afterimage that uses multiple Drives or Swallow Strikes in a row. Frederica, eat your heart out.
Pretty much the second most important skill in the entire tree after Afterimage. It's well worth getting as soon as possible, and maybe even deliberately saving some points during late Veteran so you can max it as soon as possible.

Act Breaker

Deals melee STR-based cut damage to one enemy. Attempts to stun the target. The stun chance is increased by how high the target's current HP is. The exact formula for this is unknown.
Yeah whatever who cares.
That base chance to inflict Stun is humongous. Could be used to quickly take something out of commission in a random encounters. But in a boss fight, it's dead weight--when you really want to stun is when the enemy is low on health, because that's when it's frantically firing off its big damage skills.
It can also be handy to snipe a fast enemy, but you won't need its niche often enough to invest more points than what's needed to get Regiment Rave. Hero has a terrible stat spread for inflicting disables anyways.

Regiment Rave

Deals melee STR-based cut + fire damage to one enemy at the end of the turn. Regiment Rave's damage is increased based on how much damage other party members dealt before the user acts.
Now this is the good shit. Again. Regiment Rave really doesn't take much to get to its maximum damage, and man that maximum damage is high.
Its power far surpasses any other attack a Hero can get other than Guard Rush. Even if you're mainly using shield skills, you might want to get this skill anyways because it's nice to have the ability to dish out enormous damage on free turns. Its end-of-turn damage nature is also handy against a certain boss's certain move.

Force Gift

Deals melee STR-based cut damage to one enemy. Restores the Force of other party members in the user's row.
Again, more good shit. Giving other party members their Force Boosts back quicker is, uh, really goddamn good.

Well, really good depending on the Force Boosts you're potentially speeding up the return of.
If this spawns an afterimage and the user is on the same row as the afterimage, it WILL restore Force to the user, which is worth considering.

Retain Force

When the user's Force Boost duration ends, the user recovers some Force.
Wow, Hero really just gets all the good shit, don't they. This shaves 2-3 turns off the period of time between when the user's Force Boost runs out, and when they can use it again.
It's not a high priority passive (you do need to have your actual attacks at a good level first), but is one of the best auxiliary passives you can take. Unless your team reliably ends big fights in four or five turns, there is no reason not to get this eventually.

Guard Rush

Reduces all damage dealt to all party members for one turn. At the end of that turn, if Guard Rush activated at least once, deals melee STR-based bash damage to one enemy. Each time Guard Rush activates, its damage is increased by 120%, up to 9 times. Has a cooldown.
Okay Hero we get it you have lots of cool things.

In all seriousness, Guard Rush is the cornerstone of the BIG CHUNKY skillset. Guard Rush gives you a gigantic source of burst damage in addition to reducing all damage your party took for one turn, which is, I dunno, really goddamned good.

The only downside is that you need to pay attention and make sure that your party will actually get attacked this turn, since while Guard Rush won't go on cooldown if you whiff it, mercifully, it will still eat the TP it costs, and not deal any damage.
There are a few more things you want to watch out for with this skill: attacks mitigated by Protector guards will not be further mitigated by this, nor will they contribute to its damage. (However, attacks nullified by Full Charge, level 4 elemental walls, Perfect Defense or such WILL count as being mitigated by it, though not if they're absorbed by level 5-6 elemental walls.) In addition, the attack will not fire if the initial target is dead or otherwise becomes unavailable before the end of the turn. Finally, its cooldown has a buggy interaction with Full Guard's cooldown - whichever skill you use second will overwrite the cooldown of the skill you use first with its own cooldown minus 1 turn, and both cooldown will proceed to decrease by 2 per turn, allowing you to use them again much sooner. Sadly, using Full Guard right after Guard Rush will get in the way of your afterimage using Guard Rush in the same turn, due to Full Guard preventing Guard Rush from taking effect.

Anyways, the potential damage on this skill can get really insane, but it has a cooldown, making it one skill that's worth using Charge Image for (unless you want to take advantage of the cooldown sharing bug). Try not to get disabled over the turn, either (especially important given the shield that you will want to use this skill with). As long as you can time it right, enjoy easy 5-digit damage.

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