GamePress
Analysis by MackerelPye
Bertram - Dread Cavalier

Hero Stats

Max Avg Total Stats at Lvl 40
173
HP 45
ATK 37
SPD 27
DEF 38
RES 26

Stat Variations

Level 1 Stat Variation
5★
4★
3★
HP ATK SPD DEF RES
Low 18 8 4 9 6
Middle 19 9 5 10 7
High 20 10 6 11 8

Level 40 Stat Variations
5★
4★
3★
HP ATK SPD DEF RES
Low 42 34 23 35 23
Middle 45 37 27 38 26
High 48 40 30 41 30

IV Sets

Key stats worth increasing through nature if possible.
Complementary stats that matter, but not to the point of picking them over key stats for nature increase.
Relatively worthless stat that can safely be decreased through nature.
HPATKSPDDEFRES

This unit requires use of Trait Fruits to get access to IVs

Skill Sets

When They Just Couldn't Wait Until Next Year's Fallen Banner... (Melee Tank)

Build by MackerelPye
Recommended
Steadfast Sword+ (+Def)
Alternate: Slaying Edge+ (+Def)
A Sturdy Stance (2 or 3)
Alternate: Atk/Def Solo (3 or 4)
Positional Assist B Quick Riposte 3
Alternate: Lull Atk/Def 3
Bonfire
Alternate: Ignis
C Atk Smoke 3
Alternate: Atk/Def Menace
IVs

+ATK or +DEF / -SPD

SAtk/Def Solo 3
Alternate: Mystic Boost 3

Show Explanation/Analysis

Weapon: Steadfast Sword+ (+Def) / Carrot Cudgel (+Def) / Unbound Blade (+Def) / Slaying Edge (+Def)

Assist: Positional Assist

Special: Bonfire / Ignis

Passive A: Sturdy Stance / Atk/Def Solo / Other Atk/Def Skills 

Passive B: Quick Riposte /  Lull Atk/Def / Dull Close

Passive C: Atk Smoke / Atk/Def Menace / Rouse Atk/Def

Sacred Seal: Atk/Def Solo / Atk/Def Form / Mystic Boost / Quick Riposte

  • Bertram can run a generic but nonetheless effective enemy phase build with particular specialization versus physical enemies. With the listed skills, he should be able to tank and retaliate against the majority of non-blue, non-magical enemies with great confidence.
  • The number of swords Bertram can run on a tanky build is unfortunately a bit short-handed compared to lance and axe users. 
    • Fortunately, Steadfast Sword came easily summonable via Tanith in the same update and suits the build's purposes well by granting an easy Atk/Def +5 and penalty neutralization — Bertram is simply required to end his turn near an ally for these effects. You can also run its seasonal and Grail-available variant, Carrot Cudgel, if Tanith is a particularly rare pull for you, but from a resource saving perspective it's better to wait for her. 
    • Unbound Blade is a bit difficult to get as it's exclusively on a five-star flier at this time of writing, but if you get get your hands on it, it spares Bertram the effort of running Lull Atk/Def or Dull Close in his B slot as Unbound Blade basically offers the same bonus negation effect in exchange for being away from allies. 
    • Slaying Edge offers no additional stats, but its CD -1 can be rather useful at times as his Specials fire off with better frequency. In particular, Bonfire can activate on any single counterattack with outsourced Breath support (like Brave Lucina's Geirskögul).
  • We focus on building up Bertram's Attack and Defense to zero out as many physical attacks and retaliate effectively as much as possible. This pretty much narrows Bertram's A-slot and Sacred Seal choices to a variety of Atk/Def-boosting choices you can afford to give him. Double Atk/Def Solo, for instance, is pretty easy to recommend as it grants a meaty amount of stats simply for ending Bertram's turn away from allies, and also pairs well with the Solo condition of Unbound Blade. Ideally, however, you should aim for Sturdy Stance 3 to get that nice Special blockage effect and reduce Bertram's chances of getting beaten by burst damage. 
  • It's recommended to have Quick Riposte somewhere in the build to increase Bertram's chances at killing in retaliation with a follow-up attack; Bertram's likely too slow to make much of his own naturally. You can simply run it as a budget option in the B slot with a stat Sacred Seal, but if that's taken by Lull Atk/Def or Dull Close, running it in the Sacred Seal is also just as good. 
  • Upgrading Bertram's native Rouse Atk/Def to Atk/Def Menace is an ideal plan as Menace performs a similar function but also decreases nearby enemies' stats while being less strict in positioning than Rouse. For a more reliable penalty spread option (as Menace can hit the wrong thing sometimes), good old budget Atk Smoke has got your back. 

It All Returns to Nothing (Player Phase Nuke)

Build by MackerelPye
Recommended
Ninja Katana+
Alternate: Brave Sword+
A Swift Sparrow 3
Alternate: Death Blow (3 or 4)
Positional Assist B S/D Near Trace 3
Alternate: Lull Atk/Def 3
Luna
Alternate: Galeforce
C Rouse Atk/Def 3
IVs

+ATK / -RES or -HP

SAtk/Spd Solo 3
Alternate: Heavy Blade 3

Show Explanation/Analysis

Weapon: Ninja Katana+ / Brave Sword+

Assist: Positional Assist

Special: Luna / Galeforce / Bonfire

Passive A: Swift Sparrow 3 / Surge Sparrow / Death Blow / Atk/Spd Solo / Atk/Spd Push / Atk/Def Variations of mentioned skills for Brave Lance

Passive B: S/D Near Trace / A/D Near Trace / Lull Atk/Def / Lull Spd/Def / Hit-and-Run

Passive C: Rouse Atk/Def / Flexible

Sacred Seal: Atk/Spd Solo / Heavy Blade / Blade Session / Swift Sparrow / Death Blow / Sturdy Blow / Atk/Def Solo

  • Among other current Sword cavaliers at this time of writing, Bertram's base 37 Attack, acceptable Speed, and lack of PRF weapon actually makes him rather qualified as a good Brave weapon nuke. For comparison, his Attack is only second-best to Legendary Sigurd and Seliph, and his base 27 Speed, while definitely not a hallmark by any means, reaches an acceptable usage level for Ninja Katana, allowing him to somewhat overcome his awkward follow-up issues with other forms of Atk/Spd investment. 
  • Of course, you can simply run the tried-and-true Brave Sword, which offers the same forced double and blitz damage but encourages focus on pure Atk or Atk/Def skill investment due to its Speed penalty. 
  • Overall, the build, skills, and playstyle are all quite simple: invest in Bertram's Atk (and other relevant accompanying stats) as much as possible, and knock the socks off of anything that Bertram can leverage his increased attack range against safely. 
  • If you're running Ninja Katana, other Atk/Spd skills should take advantage of the additional Speed and possible chance at quadruple-attacking foes; Swift or Surge Sparrow are direct complementary choices with the player-phase nature of the build. Atk/Spd Solo and Atk/Spd Push notably allows Bertram to avoid being dead weight in Enemy phase, if you can't help avoiding leaving Bertram in enemy territory for some reason. Likewise, doubling up on the aforementioned skills or running Blade Session make simple and effective choices in the Sacred Seal.
  • With Brave Sword, it's better to focus on Atk purely with Death Blow, or run Atk/Def modifiers such as Atk/Def Solo if emergency dual phase or a stronger Bonfire Special proc appeals to you.
  • In addition to that nice extended attacking range, Bertram's cavalry status also grants him the ability to run the Near Trace or Lull skill lines as his choice for a B passive slot. Both provide a nice substantial stat debuff to two stats of choice in addition to either providing post-combat movement or dulling enemy buffs, respectively. At any rate, if you're not running Hit-and-Run as a poor man's Near Trace, what has been said above similarly applies here: 
    • S/D Near Trace or Lull Spd/Def with Ninja Katana other Speed-investing skills. 
    • A/D Near Trace or Lull Atk/Def on Brave Sword-centered builds; Lull Atk/Def in particular pairs well with Heavy Blade to put Attack comparisons in Bertram's favor and thus activate certain Specials, especially the longer-cooldown Galeforce, more quickly and reasonably. 
  • Bertram's native Rouse Atk/Def fulfills the build's purposes well by granting him a simple Atk/Def bonus when he's not near other allies. It's difficult to recommend anything else outside of the insanely expensive Menace or Joint Drive skill line (and those are if you REALLY love the guy) if staying within budget is a concern.

*GROWL BUILDS TO A CRESCENDO* (Armor Counter Budget / Fallen Edelgard Popper)

Build by MackerelPye
Armorsmasher+ (+Def) A Sturdy Stance 2
Alternate: Atk/Def Bond 3
Positional Assist B Quick Riposte 3
Bonfire
Alternate: Ignis
C Rouse Atk/Def 3
IVs

Neutral (Budget) or +ATK / -RES

SAtk/Def Solo 3
Alternate: Atk/Def Form 3

Show Explanation/Analysis

Weapon: Armorsmasher+ (+Def)

Assist: Positional Assist

Special: Bonfire / Ignis

Passive A: Sturdy Stance / Atk/Def Bond / Other Atk/Def Skills 

Passive B: Quick Riposte

Passive C: Rouse Atk/Def

Sacred Seal: Atk/Def Solo / Sturdy Stance / Atk/Def Form / Atk/Def Bond

  • At low investment, Bertram can make himself useful as a situational armor check for modes like Arena Assault. Bertram's decent Speed stat actually benefits him here, as the combination of a natural follow-up plus Quick Riposte allows him to break through some low-Speed armors with notable follow-up prevention skills, such as Wary Fighter and especially Armored Wall from the ever-menacing Fallen Edelgard. 
  • Unless the matchup is particularly overwhelming, Bertram should be able to take out the majority of armored units with one Quick Riposte-powered round of Armorsmasher — a cheap and accessible necessity to beat some of the new tougher armors in the game.
  • Other than the described skills, much of the build retains elements from the other enemy phase build: simply build upon Bertram's Attack and Defense in his remaining A and Sacred Seal slots, run either Bonfire or Ignis for powerful burst damage, keep Rouse Atk/Def for large and pretty self-sufficient buffs, and finish off with whichever positional assist you believe suits your allies in general.

Strengths

Good Overall Physical Stat Distribution

Having 45 HP or higher is a bit of a rarity on new units these days, and the Dread Cavalier comes with just that, with the potential to become higher with +5 HP from weapon refinery. This tags along with a great base 38 Defense, which inches closely to the best of all cavalry units possible (at this time of writing, Ótr's 40) while also being perfectly buffable with refinery and skill investment. Bertram's damage certainly doesn't suffer much at a base 37 Attack either  — it's actually only the second-best of all current sword cavaliers.

Overall, these grant some nice overall tankiness and durability, especially in physical matchups coupled with additional investment. 

Cavalry Perks and Skill Access

Bertram's cavalry status grants him extended space and attacking reach as well as access to the Near Trace and Lull skill lines, all of which serve to amp up his attacking and movement flexibility.

pretty neat art

We're really scraping the bottom of the barrel here as you can see, but at any rate, props to Nishiki Areku for giving your possible investment one of the most astounding artwork pieces in Fire Emblem Heroes.

Weaknesses

Lack of Uniqueness / Huge Competition

Petrine and her Flame Lance were apparently so powerful and commonplace in the full-merge project market that the developers couldn't settle for Runesword or even something half-decent like Orson's Bereft Lance. Our dark horseman is therefore forced to fall back on a few select inheritables to function. 

Although there are a few good apples in the generic swords department (such as Steadfast Sword which comes in the same update as Bertrand), none come very close to the sheer power or number of effects in the PRF weapons of other units — the most jarring and inevitable comparison being Sigurd and his Legendary version and even his son.

Uninvested Speed and Resistance

With Speed and Resistance values that aren't absolutely terrible but awkwardly fails to break the base 30 benchmark without specifically taking Assets in them (and we vaguely advise against that), Bertram finds himself often at the absolute mercy of enemies that are fast, magically-inclined, or — even worse and very commonplace — both. 

Weapon Skills

Weapons SP Rng. Mt.
Iron Sword
Learns by default at 1 ★
Unlocks at 1 ★
Only Inheritable by Sword Units.
50 1 6
Steel Sword
Learns by default at 2 ★
Unlocks at 2 ★
Only Inheritable by Sword Units.
100 1 8
Instant SwordIf unit initiates combat, grants Atk/Def+4 during combat and foe cannot make a follow-up attack.
Learns by default at 4 ★
Unlocks at 3 ★
Only Inheritable by Sword Units.
200 1 10
Instant Sword+If unit initiates combat, grants Atk/Def+4 during combat and foe cannot make a follow-up attack.
Learns by default at 5 ★
Unlocks at 5 ★
Only Inheritable by Sword Units.
300 1 14
Weapon Evolution
Weapon Upgrades
Weapon Upgrades

Special Skills

Special Skills SP Turns
Glowing EmberBoosts damage dealt by 50% of unit's Def.
Learns by default at 4 ★
Unlocks at 3 ★
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
100 4
IgnisBoosts damage dealt by 80% of unit's Def.
Unlocks at 4 ★
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
200 4

Passive Skills

Passive Skills SP Slot
Dull Close 1At start of combat, if unit's HP = 100% and foe uses sword, lance, axe, dragonstone, or beast damage, neutralizes foe's bonuses (from skills like Fortify, Rally, etc.) during combat.
Inheritable by all units.
Unlocks at 3 ★
60
B
Dull Close 2At start of combat, if unit's HP ≥ 50% and foe uses sword, lance, axe, dragonstone, or beast damage, neutralizes foe's bonuses (from skills like Fortify, Rally, etc.) during combat.
Inheritable by all units.
Unlocks at 4 ★
120
B
Dull Close 3If foe uses sword, lance, axe, dragonstone, or beast damage, neutralizes foe's bonuses (from skills like Fortify, Rally, etc.) during combat.
Inheritable by all units.
Unlocks at 5 ★
240
B
Rouse Atk/Def 1At start of turn, if unit is not adjacent to an ally, grants Atk/Def+2 to unit for 1 turn.
Excludes Armor and Flying units.
Unlocks at 1 ★
60
C
Rouse Atk/Def 2At start of turn, if unit is not adjacent to an ally, grants Atk/Def+4 to unit for 1 turn.
Excludes Armor and Flying units.
Unlocks at 2 ★
120
C
Rouse Atk/Def 3At start of turn, if unit is not adjacent to an ally, grants Atk/Def+6 to unit for 1 turn.
Excludes Armor and Flying units.
Unlocks at 4 ★
240
C

Other Info

Origin
Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance

Banners Featured In

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