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Analysis by accidentalgreed
Pirate Surtr - Pirate of Red Sky

5

Obtainable as a 5 only

Related Heroes

Hero Stats

Max Avg Total Stats at Lvl 40
186
HP 45
ATK 45
SPD 16
DEF 44
RES 36

Stat Variations

Level 1 Stat Variation
5★
HP ATK SPD DEF RES
Low 20 11 2 10 9
Middle 21 12 3 11 10
High 22 13 4 12 11

Level 40 Stat Variations
5★
HP ATK SPD DEF RES
Low 42 41 12 40 33
Middle 45 45 16 44 36
High 48 48 19 47 39

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

Skill Sets

The Grand CEO of Oil Spill-ism (Near Savior)

Build by accidentalgreed
Recommended
Sea-Sear Lance A Close Def 4
Alternate: Def/Res Ideal 4
Positional Assist B Crafty Fighter 3
Alternate: Special Fighter 3
Bonfire C D/R Near Save 3
Alternate: A/D Near Save 3
IVs

+ATK or +DEF / -SPD

SSteady Breath
Alternate: Atk/Def Bond 3

Show Explanation/Analysis

Weapon: Sea-Sear Lance

Assist: Positional Assist

Special: Bonfire 

Passive A: Close Def 4 / Def/Res Ideal 4 / Atk/Def-based Skills

Passive B: Crafty Fighter / Special Fighter

Passive C: A/D Near Save / D/R Near Save

Sacred Seal: Steady Breath / Atk/Def Form / Atk/Def Bond / Quick Riposte / Mystic Boost

  • Pirate Surtr can utilize the same exact build Valentines Gustav runs with extreme and similar success, down to even the same exact weapon. A Near Save build specifically allows nearby allies to proceed as planned with little worries of incoming melee attacks. This strategy is potent especially with another carry ally dedicated against ranged attacks in Aether Raids Offense. 
  • Surtr is a particularly fantastic choice for a Near Savior as Sea-Sear Lance provides both increased bulk and increased Special activation in spades, while his blue coloring grants neutrality to blue attackers while giving better resistance against common red Defense units such as Legendary Sigurd.
  • Of course, to even consider this build, Surtr will need to inherit either A/D Near Save or D/R Near Save to begin with. While the former fortifies Surtr's damage output well, some Resistance investment can be considered as a safety net versus stray ranged magic or melee Dragon units like Seiros. 
  • Surtr fortunately doesn't have to venture far at all outside of his base skills for a great cohesive build, expensive C slot aside. 
    • Simply adding the Steady Breath seal in tandem with Crafty Fighter grants Surtr a follow-up attack, enemy Special denial, and accelerated Special charging in one cheap package. Combined with the CD -1 from Sea-Sear Lance, Surtr will be able to punish incoming melee attackers with an instantly-charged Bonfire on retaliation. 
    • Def/Res Ideal is a close-enough substitution to the ironically more ideal Close Def — it notably has the benefit of working versus ranged attacks should Surtr be forced to take those. Take care to, at least, provide Surtr with the bonus requirement of the skill; his role as a tank means he will likely never maintain the "unit's HP = 100%" portion of the skill.
  • If you do want to change up Surtr's kit for any other reasons, here are a few modifications you can make:
    • In particular, you'll likely change out Surtr's A-slot for something a bit more optimal. 
      • Optimal on most Near Save users, Close Def 4 cancels out enemy bonuses and provides a more consistent and slightly higher Def/Res yield of +8 simply for plonking. 
      • To increase Surtr's killing power, you may also run a high-tier Atk/Def boosting skill. Several to name include Sturdy Stance 3 (be careful not to overlap with other Guard-granting skills like Crafty Fighter), Atk/Def Unity, or Atk/Def Bond (Bond and Unity will always be in effect when Near Save is active). 
    • Special Fighter provides enemy Special delay and accelerated Special charging similar to Steady Breath, and is a fine option if you want to place more emphasis on Surtr's one-shot. Crafty Fighter + Steady Breath will generally provide the same performance while including a follow-up attack (which you cannot achieve with Special Fighter without running the Quick Riposte seal), however, and Breath support may be outsourced through other support allies anyway.
    • Steady Breath is definitely preferred in the Sacred Seal for that nice instant Bonfire retaliation, but if you're getting your cooldown acceleration elsewhere, you may instead run other Seals that further improve on Surtr's damage and tanking. Atk/Def Form or Bond or Mystic Boost are a few notables here.

Team Aqua After Dark (Carry Unit / General Gameplay)

Build by accidentalgreed
Recommended
Sea-Sear Lance A Distant Counter
Positional Assist B Crafty Fighter 3
Alternate: Slick Fighter 3
Sol
Alternate: Bonfire
C Surtr's Portent
Alternate: Pulse Smoke 3
IVs

+RES or +ATK / -SPD

SSteady Breath
Alternate: Mirror Stance 2

Show Explanation/Analysis

Weapon: Sea-Sear Lance

Assist: Positional Assist

Special: Sol / Bonfire / Aether

Passive A: Distant Counter / Def/Res Ideal

Passive B: Crafty Fighter / Slick Fighter

Passive C: Surtr's Portent / Pulse Smoke

Sacred Seal: Steady Breath / Mirror Stance / Mystic Boost

  • Given his fantastic tools and tanking capabilities by his lonesome, Surtr can also be utilized as his own solo carry unit in Aether Raids and other forms of content. As such, Surtr should be outfitted with support allies rather than supporting himself as he's expected to take on multiple enemies in one sitting. 
  • One of the bigger main changes from the Near Save build is switching Surtr from a bodyguard to a grand tank. As such, to strengthen Surtr's carry status, Distant Counter is the preferred A slot to enable counterattacks against all ranged enemies. 
  • Surtr's Portent or Pulse Smoke takes precedence in the C slot to easily put matchups in Surtr's favor or delay Special charging against common defenders, respectively. Surtr's Portent plays well with the bonus requirement of Def/Res Ideal (if you're planning on keeping that) and is generally a good non-Aether Raids option. On the other hand, Pulse Smoke is a great tool against common Aether Raids defender units, especially Fallen Edelgard, Legendary Sigurd, and most Infantry Pulse setups.
  • Sol is the preferred Special here for increased survivability, especially if Surtr has to get in multiple fights per round. If you prefer more killing power on retaliation, Bonfire's huge burst damage tends to make kills more certain. Both should be run with the Steady Breath seal or other outsourced forms of it for instant activation upon getting attacked. While Aether provides both sustain and additional damage in one slot, its longer cooldown means it may activate in inconvenient times (such as if the enemy's HP is too low from Surtr's first hit). 
  • Surtr's default Crafty Fighter is perfectly suited for the job almost all the time, providing Surtr with a flexible guaranteed follow-up while preventing enemies from efficiently charging their Specials versus Surtr. To preserve Surtr's great stats and be better prepared versus penalty punisher enemies (like Thrasir), however, Slick Fighter is an option that provides a safeguard him against possible stat penalties while maintaining Crafty Fighter's forced follow-up.
  • As mentioned, Steady Breath is a preferred Sacred Seal as it helps instantly fire off 2 CD Specials, but with outsourced substitutions, you can turn to alternatives like Mirror Stance (which improves Surtr's magical bulk and damage) or Mystic Boost (provides additional healing after each battle while providing increased resilience versus healer enemies).  

b a r r e l c h e s t o (Bold Fighter / Mixed Phase)

Build by accidentalgreed
Sea-Sear Lance A Atk/Def Ideal 4
Alternate: Atk/Def Solo (3 or 4)
Pivot
Alternate: Positional Assist
B Bold Fighter 3
Bonfire
Alternate: Galeforce
C Armored Stride 3
Alternate: Surtr's Portent
IVs

+ATK / -SPD

SAtk/Def Solo 3
Alternate: Steady Breath

Show Explanation/Analysis

Weapon: Sea-Sear Lance

Assist: Positional Assist

Special: Bonfire / Galeforce

Passive A: Atk/Def Ideal / Death Blow / Atk/Def Solo

Passive B: Bold Fighter

Passive C: Armored Stride / Surtr's Portent / Armor March

Sacred Seal: Death Blow / Atk/Def Solo / Steady Breath / Armored Boots

  • Sea-Sear Lance's Atk/Def -6 debuff whenever the enemy is above 75% HP, in addition to its Slaying effect (meaning any Special run on this ubild will activate more quickly at a reduced cooldown), makes a more aggressive Bold Fighter-based build a very viable setup on Pirate Surtr. With said Fighter skill, Surtr's player phase performance improves massively with the addition of a guaranteed follow-up attack as well as accelerated cooldown charging on every attack. Note that this build is better utilized for general gameplay rather than Aether Raids. 
  • As a more aggressive build, Surtr will prefer skill options which increase his damage output and movement. 
    • Death Blow is an easy and accessible way to do this for both the Sacred Seal and A-slot, giving Surtr an easy Atk boost upon initiating. The boosts only activate in player phase, however, which largely limits his performance there rather than enemy phase, and this can thus range from a total non-issue to a considerable inconvenience depending on your mileage. 
    • Atk/Def Ideal or Solo grants Surtr some dual-phase flexibility as both grant a considerable Attack and Defense boost in both phases. These are skills to consider if tanking on the side is something that's ideal to your playstyle.
    • Armored Stride, Armor March, and Armored Boots are various ways to overcome Surtr's otherwise cumbersome one-space movement, no thanks to his armor status. Be sure to account for each of their conditions, or run outsourced movement support such as Ground Orders, Guidance, or Wedding-Bell Axe.
    • Though Steady Breath technically doesn't help Surtr's initiation strength, it instead strengthens his dual-phase capabilities by granting acceleration on enemy hits. This pairs especially well with Bonfire and the CD-1 from Sea-Sear Axe, giving Surtr a source of powerful retaliation if he must take a hit. 
  • As discussed above, Bonfire is a preferred Special as its Cooldown is permanently reduced to 2 from Sea-Sear Axe and can fire off on Surtr's second Bold Fighter-powered hit.  With Steady Breath or some other source of increased charging, it even activates instantly on counterattack in enemy phase, effectively maximizing Surtr's dual phase performance with a Bonfire ready to go either phase. Galeforce is also a great movement-based option that potentially allows for two enemy kills in a single turn or a chance to back off safely.

Strengths

Sea-Sear Axe

Surtr ditches his outdated PRF weapon for what is 100% a blue clone of Loyalist Axe. With Sea-Sear Axe at his disposal, Surtr gains a lot of what makes Valentines Gustav great in a single weapon slot: 

  • Significant damage reduction on the enemy's first hit if they double Surtr — which is pretty much a natural state of order with his bad Speed. With this, follow-up attacks don't sting nearly as hard as it would for other tanky units, and depowering the first hit usually gives Surtr enough time to deal a killing blow or at least some intense pain back before the second incoming hit. 
  • Inflicting a massive Attack and Defense debuff against his enemy with either two of very easy conditions that might as well not exist: counterattacking in enemy phase or engaging a relatively healthy unit. Applying Atk/Def -6 in basically every relevant matchup serves to make Surtr significantly bulkier and hard-hitting. 
  • And the cherry on top, Special trigger acceleration — also more popularly known as the Slaying effect — which permanently decreases the cooldown of Surtr's chosen Special by -1. Combined with the correct Special acceleration skills, this grants Surtr quite a lot of build flexibility as his common Specials activate almost instantly. 

Optimized Statline

Surtr's slow-but-powerful unit archetype eats well in 2021 with a high statline total and distribution that minimizes Speed — which isn't even a very apparent issue thanks to the first-hit damage reduction from Sea-Sear Axe — and maximizes gains in every other stat. His statline is virtually identical to previous ridiculously strong armors like Brave Edelgard and Dheginsea with slight variations; thus, the king-turned-pirate naturally enjoys high damage, even defenses, and great overall tankability throughout all builds.

Armored Perks

As mentioned, being an armor results in a large number of stat points to play with; a base stat total of 186 gives lots of room for optimal distribution while making Surtr a fairly great choice for Colosseum-based modes (assuming merges aren't a problem). Additionally, coveted skills such as Crafty Fighter, Special Fighter, Bold Fighter, and the Save skill line are available to him and provide nice versatility combined with his other assets.

Surtr's Portent

A vastly improved and updated version of Surtr's previous PRF skill, Surtr's Portent can change the tide of the battle against incoming enemies by easily debuffing the closest one at a flexible distance while granting a useful bonus array to Surtr himself. While easily replaceable with other C skills like the Save line, Portent serves as nice default bonus that gives Surtr a team support option (so the Speed debuff isn't completely useless if you run an ally that benefits from increased follow-up potential) while making him even more difficult to approach for incoming enemies. 

Weaknesses

Armored Shortcomings / Competition

This is the usual song and dance that people of the armored ocean sing nowadays. That is, Surtr finds himself unexempt from bad movement options (especially without ally-granted support through Guidance, Armor March, Ground Orders) and vulnerability to armor-effective attacks.

Even worse, our good old friend Brave Hector shares a significant amount of perks with Surtr while being a universally preferred blue lance armor option thanks to other additional benefits (armor effective neutralization, follow-up denial) that Maltet grants. In comparison, Surtr effectively offers only a heavy stat advantage and first-hit damage reduction — which, make no mistake, are still pretty darn great to have.

Uninvested Resistance and Low Speed

Surtr's base 36 Resistance is the lower of his defensive stats. While it's padded out very well by the Atk debuff from Sea-Sear Lance and is perfectly suited for spot investment (such as through Resistance-granting Mythics and skills or running ally support skills like Distant Guard), no investment means magic attacks can burn through Surtr fairly quickly in repeated strikes. 

Surtr's very low Speed isn't exactly a huge issue given that Sea-Sear Axe greatly reduces the first hit of any incoming follow-up attack, and Surtr typically does more than enough single-shot damage that Null Follow-Up becomes a mere inconvenience. It's worth noting, though, that Dodge skill users become a considerable threat as their Speed completely eclipses Surtr's and can offset a lot of damage he deals back. 

Weapon Skills

Weapons SP Rng. Mt.
Iron Lance
Learns by default at 1 ★
Unlocks at 1 ★
Lance Users Only
50 1 6
Steel Lance
Learns by default at 2 ★
Unlocks at 2 ★
Lance Users Only
100 1 8
Silver Lance
Learns by default at 4 ★
Unlocks at 3 ★
Lance Users Only
200 1 11
Sea-Sear LanceAccelerates Special trigger (cooldown count-1). If foe initiates combat or if foe's HP ≥ 75% at start of combat, inflicts Atk/Def-6 on foe during combat, and also, if foe can make a follow-up attack, reduces damage from foe's first attack during combat by 75%.
Learns by default at 5 ★
Unlocks at 5 ★
Non-Inheritable skill.
400 1 16
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
BonfireBoosts damage dealt by 50% of unit's Def.
Unlocks at 4 ★
Non-inheritable by Staff-wielding units.
200 3

Passive Skills

Passive Skills SP Slot
Def/Res Ideal 1At start of combat, if unit's HP = 100% or if【Bonus】is active on unit, grants Def/Res+3 to unit during combat.  【Bonus】 All effects that last "for 1 turn" or "that turn only." Includes bonuses granted by a skill like Rally or Hone and positive status effects (extra movement or effects like Dominance).
Excludes Flying and Cavalry Units
Unlocks at 2 ★
60
A
Def/Res Ideal 2At start of combat, if unit's HP = 100% or if【Bonus】is active on unit, grants Def/Res+4 to unit during combat.  【Bonus】 All effects that last "for 1 turn" or "that turn only." Includes bonuses granted by a skill like Rally or Hone and positive status effects (extra movement or effects like Dominance).
Excludes Flying and Cavalry Units
Unlocks at 3 ★
120
A
Def/Res Ideal 3At start of combat, if unit's HP = 100% or if【Bonus】is active on unit, grants Def/Res+5 to unit during combat.  【Bonus】 All effects that last "for 1 turn" or "that turn only." Includes bonuses granted by a skill like Rally or Hone and positive status effects (extra movement or effects like Dominance).
Excludes Flying and Cavalry Units
Unlocks at 4 ★
240
A
Def/Res Ideal 4At start of combat, if unit's HP = 100% or if【Bonus】is active on unit, grants Def/Res+5 to unit during combat.  【Bonus】 All effects that last "for 1 turn" or "that turn only." Includes bonuses granted by a skill like Rally or Hone and positive status effects (extra movement or effects like Dominance).
Excludes Flying and Cavalry Units
Unlocks at 5 ★
400
A
Crafty Fighter 1If unit's HP ≥ 75% and foe initiates combat, unit makes a guaranteed follow-up attack and inflicts Special cooldown charge -1 on foe per attack. (Only highest value applied. Does not stack.)
Only inheritable by armor units.
Unlocks at 1 ★
60
B
Crafty Fighter 2If unit's HP ≥ 50% and foe initiates combat, unit makes a guaranteed follow-up attack and inflicts Special cooldown charge -1 on foe per attack. (Only highest value applied. Does not stack.)
Only inheritable by armor units.
Unlocks at 2 ★
120
B
Crafty Fighter 3If unit's HP ≥ 25% and foe initiates combat, unit makes a guaranteed follow-up attack and inflicts Special cooldown charge -1 on foe per attack. (Only highest value applied. Does not stack.)
Only inheritable by armor units.
Unlocks at 4 ★
240
B
Surtr's PortentAt start of turn, if unit is within 4 spaces of a foe, inflicts Atk/Spd/Def/Res-5 on closest foes through their next actions and grants Atk/Spd/Def/Res+5 to unit for 1 turn.
Non-Inheritable skill.
Unlocks at 5 ★
300
C

Other Info

Origin
Fire Emblem Heroes

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