Should You Summon: Gala Reborn Nidhogg Ft. Summer Alex
Disclaimer: The opinions below are written by GamePress and do not actually reflect Nintendo or Cygames.... maybe. If they somehow do, it's merely coincidental!
Welcome to another edition of the Should You Summon article, an opinion piece to provide advice as to whether you should spend your wyrmite or not in attaining the newest units to grace the game. Even though by the time this is published we are into early July, the end of June bought with it another Gala banner to bolster your unit roster with a powerful limited unit, recently shown in the story. This time it is the final void dragon Nidhogg who is to receive the Gala Reborn treatment for the shadow element. Joining him on the banner is the first of what seems to be many summer units being released in the month of July. And thankfully, it is of a story character that has so far received no alternative versions besides her Gala variant. This is of course the flame bow user Summer Alex. Let us see how they shape up to their competition they face in the shadow and flame elements.
Before I begin, apologies for the lateness of the article. I typically like to write these Gala pieces alongside the endgame content that they are released with, as it has been shown that content is designed to take advantages of the recent Gala unit. Due to the Asura’s Wrath fight releasing a few days after the Gala banner, I had decided to let these units settle in to the meta of this fight before making final judgement of their worth. While this opinion may not change much from launch, it is better to be comprehensive with all endgame content instead of making pure assumptions. I will use this approach also for future Gala Banners if they are tied closely to the release of any endgame fight, so expect some articles to possible be delayed as a result.
The only adventurer to appear at the focus rate for the banner, Summer Alex bring an interesting kit into the flame element that, at first glance, seem quite confusing to understand her purpose. This becomes increasingly clear when we go over her unique passive abilities. Her first of which, Flurry Scorchrend Edge and Sting, provides an increase chance of inflicting scorchrend by 50%, and its duration by 30%. Her second, Strength Amp = Scorchrend Edge and Sting, increases her scorchrend affliction chance by a further 30%, and its duration by 30%. You may be thinking to yourself that she possesses these abilities due to the possibility that she can inflict the enemies with a much powerful version of Scorchrend, like what Delphi is capable of with Poison. This is not the case however once we move onto her adventurer skills.
Her first skill Tropical Snipe, at a low SP cost of 2560, deals 1 hit of 1626%, and lowers the scorchrend resistance of enemies by 20% for 30 seconds. This scorchrend resistance down is stackable, allowing her to maintain a consistently high chance of applying scorchrend at any point during a battle. This skill also has a secondary variant which is tied to the usage of her second skill, Burning Bonds.
Burning Bonds, at an SP cost of 7140, grants the user a Strength Amp (no cooldown), deals 1 hit of 2065% damage, and applies ‘Scorchbloom’ to the enemy for 30 seconds. The Scorchbloom effect is somewhat like the Burning Ambition effect that the adventurer Nobunaga has, in which it deals additional damage to the enemy when it is removed. There are two key differences though:
- On top of the damage Scorchbloom does when its effect ends (1432%), it will also apply the Scorchrend affliction to them. Do note that this affliction is no different to the typical Scorchrend afflictions applied by other flame adventurers in terms of damage and duration.
- Scorchbloom can only be removed by either letting its 30 second timer run out, or by utilising the Tropical Snipe variant directly after Burning Bonds.
If you wish to meet this second condition, you will only have a brief second or two to utilise the Tropical Snipe variant before it reverts to its normal version. However, you are rewarded considerably for the variant use, as the skill not only allows you to immediately remove the Scorchbloom effect but will now deal 2355% damage on top of its scorchrend resistance reduction. This provides Summer Alex an excellent burst option to punish enemies in their broken state, as she can deal a total of 5852% flame damage in a matter of seconds. It is also important to note that she can attain a maximum Team Amp level of 3, making her the first permanent adventurer in the game to come with this ability. The developers seem to be continuing to refine units with amps until they can find the right balance between damage output and support utility, without making them obscenely overpowered to the point that they outright relegate pure offensive units lacking them.
Overall, when summarising her kit together, it does look like Summer Alex is positioned to be a well-rounded adventurer for the flame element with respectable damage, amp access, and her ability to maintain consistent scorchrend uptime for punisher access. Another benefit is that her kit is not buff reliant, meaning that she is positioned as an excellent option to overcome the disadvantages that other adventurers face from the Curse of Nihility content. However, one of her biggest issues that she faces is the fact that she does not fill a niche that other flame adventurers are capable of.
- If you want good Scorchrend uptime with some support utility to boot, it better to go with Kimono Elisanne, who can maintain a constant 40% strength boost and 15% wind damage reduction, while also being able to apply and reduce the scorchrend resistance of enemies. She also possesses passive abilities such as Skill Prep and skill haste boosts which allow her to get more out of her support skills, she may have fitted in her skill share slots.
- If you want raw damage while having some Scorchrend utility, you can simply utilise Gala Leonidas, whose kit provides excellent damage both in the Agito and Rise of the Sinister Dominion environments, as well as some dispel utility with his second skill.
Her one advantage over the two is amp access, but due to her high sp cost with her skill 2, she has no potential to be positioned as a pure amp buffer. Because of this, you will need to be reliant on other units having amping capabilities, as well the future release of a good amp buffer in the flame element, to get the most out of this.
While for a lot of players I would not recommend summoning her at this stage, this opinion has somewhat changed over the past 24 hours. The recent release of the Asura’s Blinding Light fight on Master difficulty has an insanely high scorchrend affliction base resistance of 80%. This means that you will be unable to apply this affliction after 5 applications, which can make running scorchrend punisher effects completely useless in the long term. Summer Alex however, due to her high base rate of afflicting scorchrend, as well as her scorchrend down resistance, and her extended time, is positioned as one of only two units that can maintain consistent scorchrend enabling. Considering this is a total bonus damage modifier of 25%, I do recommend summoning for her if you do not possess Kimono Elisanne and are planning to tackle this fight on Master, as this utility will significantly improve your damage output. This is particularly important for the first weak point that is summoned of the second phase of the fight, as you will most likely possess many stacks of the unique buff that boosts your damage output against it.
Recommended Builds: For co-abilities, the standard setup of any adventurers possessing the strength and skill damage co-ability, as well as the chain co-ability Combo = Critical Rate from the adventurer Kimono Elisanne, will be the best path to boosting her damage output. If not in the possession of Kimono Elisanne, a critical rate co-ability will be the best substitute.
Her wyrmprint setup will follow the typical sets that flame damage adventurers utilising on the assumption of Scorchrend and Burning application.
- Memory of a Friend: Flurry Strength +20%
- The Cutie Competition: Scorchrend Punisher +25%
- Me and My Bestie!: Burning Punisher +30%
- To the Extremee!: Flurry Devastation (Flame) +12%
- A Small Courage: Skill Damage +20%
- Crown of Light: Skill Damage +20%
- Savage Hawk (Lance’s Boon): Sword’s Psalm III
In the absence of one of these afflictions, a good alternative is Initio’s Sentinal, which provides an additional 25% bonus to the critical damage modifier.
Observer of Life and Death
Besides Summer Alex, we finally get the last Gala Reborn void dragon in the game, being Nidhogg. Like all other Gala Reborn dragons before, Nidhogg provides the strength +70% passive ability, and the Throes of Eternity II passive ability, which is just another form of the standard 30% additional damage modifier for 45 seconds whenever 10% of the dragon gauge is filled. Compared to the rest of the competition, Gala Reborn Nidhogg smashes the strength dragon competition within the shadow element, such as the flat rate 80% boost found on Fatalis and Andromeda. Even a dragon such as High Chthonius can only match Gala Reborn Nidhogg’s prowess after shapeshifting two times in battle. As such, if you are a person who loves to utilise units with strong force strikes or standard attacks within the shadow element, such as Gala Chelle, Bellina or Linnea, this should a priority summon for you.
Outside of his passive, Gala Reborn Nidhogg also possesses a strong dragon form like the rest of his compatriots. His standard attack pattern is one of the best in the game, allowing him to dish out great amounts of damage in a quick succession. His skill meanwhile Boomsday Eclipse deals 8 hits of 300% damage, and like other reborn dragons, will be utilised again at the end of a shapeshift, regardless of if the skill gauge is filled. While a 2400% modifier seems impressive on paper, it has the downside of a decently long animation, as well as it is getting a damage reduction while an enemy is broken to 1800%. However, this impressive dragon form allows Gala Reborn Nidhogg to just be best in slot or competitive to Arsene for dragon abusers in the shadow endgame content, such as Forte and Alberius. As such, I could also recommend pulling for Gala Reborn Nidhogg if you like running these units.
However, outside of these two scenarios it is hard to recommend summoning Gala Reborn Nidhogg for units that are reliant on their skill damage output. This is simply due to the passive abilities presented on dragons such as Arsene (180% skill damage that does not get nullified) or Gala Cat Sith (180% skill damage on field buff that does get nullified) providing much better bonueses to the damage output of the skills of a unit. It does go without saying though that if you do not possess either of these dragons or need a bit more firepower for your shadow teams you should prioritise summoning Gala Reborn Nidhogg. However, if you are in the boat of having a strong shadow dragon line-up and you do not align with any of the reason stated previously you can consider skipping getting him.
On Summoning Rates and Wyrmsigils
- As this is a Gala banner, the summoning rate of any 5-star adventurer or dragon has been boosted to 6% from 4%.
- Summer Alex has an 0.5% chance to summon, while Gala Reborn Nidhogg has a 0.8% chance
- Besides the two focus units being sparkable, the summer variant of Celliera, Julietta, Mikoto and Patia are also available to spark for
Final Verdict: Yes
Gala Reborn Nidhogg proves too invaluable of a dragon to skip for when he is best in slot for quite a few of the meta units within the shadow element. However, even if you have possession of a dragon such as Arsene it is still worthwhile to grab a copy to flesh out your shadow team roster. Summer Alex also surprisingly has become an excellent addition to the flame roster due to being one of the few Scorchrend enablers in the latest Rise of the Sinister Dominion fight. Finally, it also helps that straight after this banner we will receive a free daily tenfold summoning event for the approximation of two weeks, so now is probably the least punishing time to summon for focus units you like.