Analysis by MackerelPye
Spring Saleh - Vernal Sage

Hero Stats

Max Avg Total Stats at Lvl 40
HP 41
ATK 37
SPD 36
DEF 26
RES 28

Stat Variations

Level 1 Stat Variation
Low 18 8 7 6 5
Middle 19 9 8 7 6
High 20 10 9 8 7

Level 40 Stat Variations
Low 37 34 33 23 24
Middle 41 37 36 26 28
High 44 40 39 30 31

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.

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

Skill Sets

Whack You 'Til You're Scrambled (Higher-Investment Offense)

Build by MackerelPye
Springy Axe+ (+Spd)
Alternate: Ninja Masakari+
A Atk/Spd Solo (3 or 4)
Alternate: Swift Sparrow (2 or 3)
Positional Assist B Lull Spd/Def 3
Alternate: Hit and Run
Alternate: Luna
C Rouse Atk/Res 3
Alternate: Joint Drive Atk

+ATK or +SPD / -HP

SAtk/Spd Solo 3
Alternate: Heavy Blade 3

Show Explanation/Analysis

Weapon: Springy Axe+ (+Spd) / Ninja Masakari+ 

Assist: Positional Assist 

Special: Moonbow / Luna / Galeforce

Passive A: Atk/Spd Solo / Swift Sparrow 3 / Atk/Spd Catch / Life and Death 

Passive B: Lull Spd/Def / Hit and Run / Lull Atk/Spd / Lull Atk/Def

Passive C: Rouse Atk/Res / Joint Drive Atk / Hone Cavalry

Sacred Seal: Atk/Spd Solo / Heavy Blade / Life and Death / Swift Sparrow / Death Blow

  • Saleh's extended range, great offensive stats, and nice offensive Axe options paves way for a more higher-investment offensive build. His default Springy Axe fortunately cuts down on costs as it's perfectly suited for the build thanks to its easy Atk/Spd +5 conditions as well as working flexibly both phases (which work perfectly with double Atk/Spd Solo in the A and Sacred Seal slots). For a more blitz-oriented build with better potential damage and higher hit count, Saleh may also consider Ninja Masakari, which is obtainable from Heroic Grails. 
  • Many offensive A slots and Sacred Seals will do on this build; as mentioned, Solo skill in particular are preferred with Springy Axe due to working both phases. Ninja Masakari rolls well with just about anything, though Heavy Blade deserves special mention for activating Specials such as Moonbow and Galeforce very quickly with Masakari's consecutive-hitting nature. 
  • A Lull skill of choice is a pretty obvious choice — preferably Defense-based to directly improve Saleh's damage output. Lacking those or preferring the hit and run approach, the skill literally called Hit and Run works wonderfully in tandem with Saleh's great movement and allows him to escape a space after a kill. 
  • Saleh's C skill passive is less of a priority than other slots mentioned here, though Rouse Atk/Res comes by default on Saleh and is a nice option to improve his visible Attack as well as encourage Solo conditions. Joint Drive Atk actively improves Saleh's damage output even more in exchange for having allies nearby. On an all-cavalry setup, Hone Cavalry or other cavalry-exclusive C skills of your choice improves the performance of fellow horsemen. 

Egg Salehd (Low-Investment / General Gameplay)

Build by MackerelPye
Springy Axe+ (+Spd) A Fury 3
Alternate: Atk/Def Solo 3
Positional Assist B Desperation 3
Alternate: Lancebreaker 3
Alternate: Iceberg
C Rouse Atk/Res 3

+SPD or +ATK / -HP

or Neutral (for low-investment purposes)

SSwift Sparrow 2
Alternate: Atk/Spd Solo 3

Show Explanation/Analysis

Weapon: Springy Axe (+Spd)

Assist: Positional Assist

Special: Moonbow / Iceberg / Luna

Passive A: Fury / Atk/Def Solo / Triangle Adept

Passive B: Desperation / Lancebreaker

Passive C: Rouse Atk/Res 

Sacred Seal: Swift Sparrow / Atk/Spd Solo / Atk/Def Solo / Spd/Def Solo

  • Saleh hops in with a solid 37/36 offensive spread as well as a great default weapon in Springy Axe, which is possibly one of the best offensive Axe weapons at this time of writing. Specifically, it grants a pretty magnificent Atk/Spd +5 and handy penalty immunity if the enemy is above 75% — basically a given on the majority of content. It's not exactly difficult, then, to formulate a cheap and simple but effective attacker build.
  • Everybody knows the song and dance of Fury + Desperation at this point: Fury improves Saleh's stats all-around, increasing his general offense and survivability cheaply. The recoil damage suffered after every round of combat contributes towards Desperation activation, allowing Saleh to make his follow-up attack immediately before a counterattack can do him in. 
    • For Assault modes (where you can only use one unit once), you can turn Saleh into a nice type check unit with Lancebreaker, helping him to totally turn the tides against most Lance enemies without Null Follow-Up. This can be paired with Triangle Adept to rub the salt in, though it pretty much limits Saleh to just attacking blue units. 
  • With Spring Minerva being available as a 4-star focus in the same event, one may opt to inherit Atk/Def Solo from her. It's a fairly good A-slot skill as it grants more stats in Atk/Def and no recoil damage unlike Fury, and any bit of additional physical bulk helps out Saleh in the short run. It's easily pairable with Rouse Atk/Res — which also requires Saleh to maintain Solo conditions anyway — and any Solo skill of your choice in the Sacred Seal for a very high stat swing. 
  • Moonbow works well enough as a short-cooldown Special, typically working no matter how long or short-lived Saleh's combat is. Luna gives better returns at a slightly slower turn rate, while Iceberg deals solid damage based off of Saleh's pretty decent Resistance stat.

Sand In This Rabbit Stew (High-Investment Distant Tank)

Build by MackerelPye
Plegian Axe+ (+Spd)
Alternate: Deck Swabber+ (+Spd)
A Distant Counter
Positional Assist B Lull Atk/Spd 3
Alternate: Mystic Boost 3
Alternate: Sol
C Atk Smoke 3
Alternate: Rouse Atk/Res 3

+SPD or +RES / -HP

SSpd/Res Solo 3
Alternate: Atk/Spd Solo 3

Show Explanation/Analysis

Weapon: Plegian Axe+ (+Spd or +Res) / Deck Swabber (+Spd or +Res)

Assist: Positional Assist

Special: Noontime / Sol

Passive A: Distant Counter

Passive B: Lull Atk/Spd / Mystic Boost / Lull Atk/Def

Passive C: Atk Smoke / Rouse Atk/Res 

Sacred Seal: Spd/Res Solo / Spd/Def Solo / Atk/Spd Solo

  • This build pays better attention to Saleh's good Resistance (not super fantastic, mind you) for a melee cavalry unit, combined with great Attack and Speed and access to some rather great defensive Axe weapons. Of course, seeing as Saleh's defensive stats aren't the greatest at base, a high amount of investment in the form of merges, specific skills, Dragonflowers, summoner support, and support allies will be required to get full leverage out of this build. 
  • Saleh will be choosing either Plegian Axe or Deck Swabber as his choice of weapon, and both are fortunately available from fellow Heroic Grail units. Both operate similarly between their solo conditions (i.e. being at least one space away from allies) and decreasing the enemy's Attack and Defense, allowing Saleh to hit harder and take hits with better ease. The difference lies in Plegian Axe's better potential stat swings if penalties are present on the enemy (which are easy enough to distribute with Atk Smoke, Sabotage skills, etc), as opposed to Deck Swabber cancelling visible enemy bonuses instead. 
  • In both general gameplay and Aether Raids Offense play, Distant Counter will prove to be more useful than not as it allows Saleh to make good use of his invested defenses versus ranged enemies. He is also able to heal more often via Noontime or Sol as a result of being able to counterattack. 
  • Saleh's cavalry class gives him fortunate access to Lull skills, which cancel out enemy bonuses in two stats and further applies an incombat debuff of -3 to said stats. For maximum survivability, Lull Atk/Spd directly impacts the offensive stats of enemy units, and the Speed swing isn't redundant with the Atk/Def effects of Plegian Axe and Deck Swabber. You may run Defense-based Lulls to improve Saleh's damage, though note they typically overlap with the Lull Def effect from Deck Swabber.
    • Alternatively, you may run Mystic Boost for reliable healing after every combat in addition to Noontime / Sol, and nerfing the damage from Wrathful Staff healers like Brave Veronica isn't a bad bonus.
  • Atk Smoke is a very obvious option with the penalty magnification from Plegian Axe and is still a generally good defensive C slot nonetheless. To encourage solo conditions and/or if you already have penalty support from other allies, Saleh's base Rouse Atk/Res is good to keep. 
  • As far as seals are concerned, Saleh will be wanting one of the Solo seals in order to further encourage the also-Solo conditions of either Axe. Spd/Res Solo is ideal as it further improves Saleh's magic tanking bulk as well as all-around Speed, though Atk/Spd Solo is optimal for improving overall offense instead while Spd/Def can be taken for physical improvement.


Solid Offenses

37/36 Atk and Speed isn't exceptionally extraordinary but is nevertheless a pretty solid offensive statline to start with. With investment, Saleh achieves a nice amount of follow-ups and follow-up avoidance, as well as dealing consistent damage across most builds. 

Cavalry Perks

Saleh can hop three spaces, allowing him to outmaneuver most units in other movement types as well as benefit from a pretty flexible attacking range. Additionally, cavalry units are allowed access to the famed Lull skill line, which can skew stat comparisons unconditionally in Saleh's favor. Finally, other cavalry allies can lend some nice exclusive support skews in the form of Hone Cavalry and the like. 

Native Access to Springy Axe / Good Alternative Weapon Library

An inheritable weapon which basically grants basically Atk/Spd +5 for basically no condition at all (the enemy unit has to be above 75% HP, which is a given seeing as all units start with 100% HP) is hard to say no to. The stars aligned and Saleh, fortunately, gets it as a default option. The fact that the axe also grants penalty neutralization to Atk/Spd while the in-combat stat boosts are active in both phases are also really good reasons to keep it in favor of other axes. However, Saleh can also opt for other great alternative weapons such as Plegian AxeDeck Swabber, or Ninja Masakari for individual needs.

Free Unit

Copies of Saleh are obtainable through his respective Tempest Trials and the Heroic Grails shop after that ends. No Orbs are required to summon Saleh and all the competitive perks he comes with.


Cavalry Blues

Saleh's horseriding status can prove inconvenient sometimes with the inability to traverse or get repositioned into terrain spaces such as trees, chasms, and cavalry trenches. He is also lacking in colorful inheritance options outside of Lull skills, especially Flashing Blade, Null Follow-Up, and more.

Familiar Competition

Does Saleh's statline seem familiar? You wouldn't be blamed too hard for making comparisons with him and the also-free, Tempest Trials-acquirable Plegian Kris, who sports an extremely similar statline with a few minor differences. In particular, Kris's stat advantage in Defense — having five more than Saleh in exchange for six Resistance points — helps him take on physical melee matchups overall more comfortably than Saleh would. The difference in Speed — one more than Saleh — is extremely minor but annoying to ignore given how otherwise similar in playstyle the two are. Both also cower in the sheer force that is Freyja, who sports superior offenses and built-in Distant Counter and damage reduction in one fairy queen-themed package. 

Okay Defenses

For all the investment Saleh poured into his Resistance, it seems like he backed out mid-way, leaving it at only a rather decent base 28 by today's standards. Furthermore, having just 26 Defense bites a LOT when it comes to weathering physical hits, something Saleh will commonly put up with thanks to his playstyle and physical melee leanings. Needless to say, don't expect him to zero everything out like Pirate Veronica/Xander and Duessel.

Weapon Skills

Weapons SP Rng. Mt.
Iron Axe
Learns by default at 1 ★
Unlocks at 1 ★
Inheritable by Axe users only.
50 1 6
Steel Axe
Learns by default at 3 ★
Unlocks at 2 ★
Inheritable by Axe users only.
100 1 8
Springy Axe

At start of combat, if foe's HP ≥ 75%, grants Atk/Spd+5 to unit and neutralizes unit's penalties to Atk/Spd during combat.

Learns by default at 4 ★
Unlocks at 3 ★
Inheritable by Axe users only.
200 1 10
Springy Axe+

At start of combat, if foe's HP ≥ 75%, grants Atk/Spd+5 to unit and neutralizes unit's penalties to Atk/Spd during combat.

Learns by default at 5 ★
Unlocks at 5 ★
Inheritable by Axe users only.
300 1 14
Available Rearmed Weapons
Arcane Downfall
Weapon Evolution
Weapon Upgrades
Weapon Upgrades

Support Skills

Support Skills Rng. SP
Reciprocal Aid

Swap HP with adjacent ally (neither unit can go above their max HP).

Learns by default at 4 ★
1 150

Passive Skills

Passive Skills SP Slot
Resistance +1

Grants Res+1

Inheritable by all units.
Unlocks at 1 ★
HP/Res 1

Grants HP+3, Res+1.

Inheritable by all units.
Unlocks at 2 ★
HP/Res 2

Grants HP+4, Res+2.

Inheritable by all units.
Unlocks at 4 ★
Rouse Atk/Res 1

At start of turn, if unit is not adjacent to an ally, grants Atk/Res+2 to unit for 1 turn.

Excludes Armor and Flying units.
Unlocks at 3 ★
Rouse Atk/Res 2

At start of turn, if unit is not adjacent to an ally, grants Atk/Res+4 to unit for 1 turn.

Excludes Armor and Flying units.
Unlocks at 4 ★
Rouse Atk/Res 3

At start of turn, if unit is not adjacent to an ally, grants Atk/Res+6 to unit for 1 turn.

Excludes Armor and Flying units.
Unlocks at 5 ★

Other Info

Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones

Banners Featured In