Super Ultimate Ra Dragon has been released in JP and will be released in North America shortly. The delay in release can be advantageous as we have adequate time to prepare for his challenging evolution along with deciding how to team build the spiciest of all the fried chicken. I go into detail examining Ra Dragon as a whole in my previous post and I encourage you to read it in conjunction with this article HERE.
As the title implies, this post will be dedicated into discussing how Ra Dragon functions if you do not own two Dark Kalis (or any of her seasonal variations) as well as helping you decide if it is worthwhile to spend 300,000 MP to purchase him.
—video goes here—-
How Ra Dragon works
Ra Dragon is a rainbow leader who utilizes all 6 elements to deal up to 144x ATK. Furthermore, God type cards benefit from 2.25x HP / RCV and it is this added bulk that makes him powerful and relevant in an era of heart crosses. If you choose to use a non-God card, that monster will only be benefiting from a lackluster 64x ATK.
2x ATK when matching 4 elements. 3x ATK for each additional orb type. 8x with all 6 elements. 1.5x HP/ATK/RCV for God types
2.25x HP / 144x ATK / 2.25x RCV
|Ra Dragon Scaling Leader Skill|
As such, you should do your best to use God type cards, even if they have irrelevant actives as you can correct them with Skill Inheritance.
From my research on the JP server, it becomes clear that a team consisting of Ra Dragon, 2 Dark Kali, Isis, and Kanna is the strongest bases. These cards provide full colour coverage along with relevant awakenings while being completely bind immune. Finally, you inherit various actives as the dungeon requires.
This is of course a template, but you should try your very best to adhere to it as these subs provide utility, offensive awakenings, and board changers. The full bind immunity is also valuable as you will never have to fear that mechanic.
I do not have the ideal team
If that was the first thought that crossed your mind, you are not alone. In fact, I am certain that you are in fact the majority and have to be creative with your team compositions to compensate.
Isis and Kanna
Examining each sub, it becomes clear that Isis is purely for colour coverage and short, 3-turn base cooldown. The bind clear is irrelevant here as everyone is bind immune and you always inherit something on top of her.
Conversely, Kanna is used for the 4 TPA as a means to help bridge the gap in terms of damage as you are unable to actually use orb changers and have to rely on a given board. The active is also inherited over as the enhance component is relatively lackluster. Thus, Kanna is mostly a luxury sub who in theory does not provide additional benefit outside of a nice body.
If you are missing either Isis or Kanna, all is not lost as they are the “least important” members of the team as they are mostly for colour coverage and using a God card does fulfill their roles as you are inheriting something any way. Who you choose to use as a substitute depends on your own Monster Box, but simply look for God type character with beneficial awakenings/colour coverage as the active is irrelevant. Some examples include Dark Metatron , Awoken Izanagi , Rozuel , Ariel , Reincarnated Parvati , and Venus . I am certain you can find more and utilize the creative side of your brain.
Dark Kali (or any seasonal variation) has always been critical to the success of Ra Dragon. Due to the fact that you require all 6 elements for full activation, you will often times find yourself requiring a board changer. For a while, Dark Kali was your only option; however, many variations of her active have been released, but many/most lack the God typing.
Using cards such as Ragnarok Dragon or Chocobo was somewhat effective for old Ra Dragon as you were missing out on less benefits compared to the new Ra Dragon as there was no HP multiplier. Furthermore, when Ra Dragon was initially released, he had an unprecedented 144x ATK multiplier that simply obliterated any dungeon in his path and having a sub or even two who only hit 64x was not too big of an issue. By today’s standards, 144x is still strong, but no where as nearly overpowering as it once was and to have a sub or two only achieving 64x with no defensive multiplier is far more painful.
As such, there is perhaps an even greater need to own a Dark Kali (or two) as you are still reliant on board changers for success and even though you can inherit that style of active, it is best to own the original as the cooldown will always be shorter.
0-1 Dark Kali
Owning 0-1 Dark Kalis will probably be the norm for most players and it pains me to say this, but if you own 0, you should probably not buy Ra Dragon. She is simply too instrumental to his success and unless you own multiple Sherias Roots (or similar inheritable board changers) along with powerful God bases, you will be out of luck.
On the positive side, if you own a single Dark Kali and at least one inheritable board changer, Ra Dragon can be effectively used. I want to stress the value of inheriting a board changer instead of using something like Gainut , Linthia , or Chocobo . All three of these options do not have God typing and some produce jammer or poison orbs. Furthermore, let us hypothetically assume that all three are +297 and max level. This places Linthia at 1,086 and Chocobo at 950 weighted stats. However, neither will benefit from the 2.25x to all stats and make them rather lackluster compared to the average God at about 1,050 weighted stats (with +297) who is bolstered to around 2,363. This is a huge difference and the gap only widens once we get the Reincarnated Gods who have around 1,300 weighted stats with +297.
Perhaps the only possible exceptions to this hardfast God-only rule is Ragnarok Dragon and maybe Sherias Roots. Ragnarok Dragon has both God and Dragon Killer awakenings along with bind immunity. This helps preserve the full bind immune team along with covering two potentially difficult colours. The main drawback is the 0 base RCV that may make it more challenging to heal up after attacks. Despite the lack of HP and RCV benefits, Ragnarok may still keep abreast with other subs due to his dual killer awakenings that will allow him to deal more damage than any other sub against certain bosses (but this is unusable in Arena 3). Sherias Roots follows a similar train of thought, but only has a single God Killer awakening and no bind immunity.
You can of course use other board changers, but keep in mind the handicap you are giving yourself as Ra Dragon is no longer as overpowering as he was when first released. This statement mostly applies to players who already have purchased Ra Dragon and were using a single Dark Kali and Chocobo (with no other inherit option) as it may be unwise to purchase now if you had the same set up as your MP may be better spent elsewhere. Perhaps you can get away with only a single board changer in shorter content, but will most likely struggle in difficult/longer dungeons.
Keiji is a God-type board refresh that can be used in lieu of a Dark Kali. However, you have to bear in mind how his active works and why it differs from a board changer. Keiji provides a board reshuffle in that he deletes all 30 orbs and then replaces them via one giant skyfall blob. This can be influenced by skyfall buffs/debuff, locked orbs, and randomness. It is this randomness that is perhaps most dangerous as you do not guarantee at least 3 orbs of each element and may find yourself unable to actually activate your full multiplier.
Being unable to activate after using an active could be lethal as your probably were banking on activation and sweeping the floor. Thus, I would strongly advise caution with Keiji as his active is more for the situational board refresh to remove locked orbs.
Future inheritable farmable subs
With the recent changes to the Skill Inheritance System to include 55 farmable monsters, many players will be able to use Gainaut and Linthia as inherits. This does allow for a less REM pool of cards, but you should be aware that these cards will produce hazard orbs along with these changes not coming to North America for probably 2 months.
What bases to use?
Provided you have at least two ways to use a board changer, whether it be through inherits or as actual subs, you can realistically run Ra Dragon. Thus, the question becomes what cards to actually use. Naturally, you should try to adhere to the template of the optimal team as best as possible, but that may not always be the case for most players.
When trying to fill the last one or two slots, you should always prioritize God cards that have high base stats, low base cooldowns, and possibly have TPA awakenings. Who you choose to bring will be dependant on your Monster Box as there is no real hard/fast rule of who to bring. However, as a general statement, the Reincarnated cards all make amazing subs as they regain their God typing and have around 1,000 weighted stats.
Ra Dragon ideally wants to have two Dark Kali to optimally function. However, many players are not fortunate enough to own all the cards on the optimal team. You are able to get by if you are missing Isis or Kanna, but will be harder pressed with out Dark Kali. You should ideally have at least two board changers in most situations and can utilize strong Gods as bases for Skill Inheritance. Running a non-God card will impose a more sizable handicap presently compared to Ra Dragon’s original release a year ago. This is because Ra Dragon is no longer as overpowered today due to the relative rate of Powercreep and you need every bit of help you can get.
Who do you plan to use in lieu of a perfect team and are you excited for the new Ra Dragon?