Killer awakenings have been around for some time now and with the introduction of many double Killer cards, players now have the opportunity to deal spectacular damage from a single card. In addition, players are now able to farm for Killer Latents from Arena 3 in order to add additional customization to their monsters.
While having the potential for wonderful burst damage, Killer awakenings do have some drawbacks as it becomes challenging control your damage as they cannot be “turned off.”
This article will discuss how Killer awakenings work, where to use them, their inherit drawbacks, and how the new Latent Tamadras will influence gameplay.
As a side note, Killer damage has been adjusted in game to display a larger white number to indicate the larger damage along with an explosion-like sound.
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What are killer awakenings?
Killer awakenings are a special kind of awakening that allows a monster to deal 3x damage to a particular type of boss. In addition, these killer awakenings can stack if the boss has multiple typings. Thus, a card with both Dragon and Devil Killer awakenings will deal 9x damage to Zaerog Infinity .
In addition, we have also be gained access to a new set of Killer Latent awakenings that will provide a 50% increase against their respective bosses. These can also be stacked and is another way to further customize a card.
Finally, we also have access to Multiplayer Boost awakenings that provide 50% more stats to a particular card when playing coop. This awakening will provide a flat 50% increase in damage when playing in coop (will be lost if you disconnect).
Where to use Killer awakenings
Puzzle and Dragons is by nature a grind-oriented game. Generally speaking, when you wish to farm a dungeon (play it repeatedly for a certain drop), you wish to do so in the most efficient manner possible. This is not to say you cannot use fun or exciting teams, but when you need to play a specific encounter 10, 20, 50, or 100 times, you will want to try your best to min-max your performance. This is done by trying to find a balance between the actual puzzling skill required along with the time it takes to clear the dungeon.
This has led to the popularity of Awoken Liu Bei – style farming as most things die to the push of a button. However, not everyone has access to the correct inherits or subs (or even Liu Bei) and will have to be creative in finding solutions. As such, many players will turn to other leaders, but all will try to share a similar pattern: finding a lead that utilizes the least amount of combos/actives possible to sweep a floor.
Each conscious combo formed along with active skill increases the time spent along with slightly elevating the risk of either a flubbed match or the wrong active being used. This may seem small, but becomes more relevant when you start going into autopilot mode.
Taking all of this into consideration, Killer awakenings are an amazing way to improve consistency and efficiency. They will provide a significant boost in damage against particular encounters as the damage is passive. This can lead to less active skills used along with not taking a chance on how many enhanced orbs are present for full board changers.
A great example of Killer awakenings in action is when farming Special Descend Rush (SDR). SDR contains a Dragon on 5/6 floors and your consistency will be greatly improved if you have access to those particular awakenings. If you want to see my SDR team in action, feel free to read my other article HERE.
Countering a challenging boss
The other aspect of Puzzle and Dragons is playing through challenging content that cannot be mindlessly cleared. These dungeons often require actual puzzling and are often only completed once or twice. As such, you are not necessarily concerned about pure speed and instead finding a way to clear it in as few attempts as possible.
Killer awakenings can help provide that extra cushion for sufficient damage and can help you easily bypass a floor or two with ease. This can result in fewer active skills used which can allow you to budget resources for other floors.
Ranking dungeons generally want you to blitz through the dungeon as fast as possible. This can be accomplished via fast puzzling skills or low combo count. Furthermore, you often try to do just enough damage to kill a floor in order to save time.
As such, a Killer awakening can save you time with fewer matches or active skills used. It can also help you achieve damage cap for an additional 10,000 points.
When Killer awakenings are problematic
Due to the fact that a single card on your team will be achieving 3x damage against a particular boss, it becomes nearly impossible to feasibly control your overall damage. This plays havoc against encounters with absorption/void mechanics as one monster will always be dealing too much damage and becoming counter-productive.
If you try to reduce your damage sufficiently to allow all cards to hit under the required threshold, you will probably be dealing insufficient damage overall.
Thus, it becomes a loss-loss situation for the most part and are better off not bringing those cards for that particular dungeon. This mostly applies to instances where the spawn encounters are not fixed (such as Arena) as there is only a possibility you will face something with an absorption shield.
The main issue with Killer awakenings is that there is no on/off switch. You will always deal 3x damage against those particular encounters and there is nothing you can do about it.
Using the new Latent Killer Tamadras
With the most recent changes to Arena 3, players are now able to farm Killer Latent Tamadras. These latents occupy two slots, but are able to provide 50% additional damage against a particular boss. These can stack and you can mix and match killers to suit your needs. However, you these Latents occupy two slots and you would require the 6th slot extender to use a third.
Certain monster types are restricted to particular Killer latents. Note that Balance type monsters can use any type of Killer Latent.
Naturally with the restrictions in place, you will have to be wise and creative with your usage in order maximize your efficiency. However, your main goal with these Latents should be to improve your farming efficiency/consistency instead of improving your end game teams as the Latents can prove dangerous against absorption bosses.
With all this in mind, your Zeus Dioses for your Awoken Liu Bei team may gain new value due to their balance typing. Balance typing ensures they are able to use any latent and are always regulated to button/efficient farming. Thus, it may be wise to create specialized Dioses for various encounters. By this, I mean investing specific killers for each Dios instead of spreading them around. For example, you create a Dragon Killer Dios by having him only inherit Dragon Killer Latents. This will help put him on par with cards like Leeza when playing through Dragon heavy content.
With clever Killer usage, you can minimize the need to bring what are sometimes niche/specific subs along with offering more value to yourself in Ranking Tournament as your Dios can help contribute to damage cap.
Many players may be loathe or fearful when removing their Skill Delay Resist Latents, but this can safely be done for Dios with the new changes to Skill Inheritance (Skill Assist). Through the farmable Ras , you are able to inherit her onto all of your Zeus Dioses to provide a buffer of 21 turns along with a healthy chunk of stats. This will prove efficient as a team of Dios x3 and Liu Bei on both sides provides 16 Skill Boosts and you have a total of 36 (15+21) turns before the skill converts over to Ras.
Killer awakenings and Latents are a powerful way to add additional passive damage to your team. They provide an unconditional boost to your output against particular spawns, but are also unable to “turn them off” when trying to control your damage. This can lead to problematic situations when playing through Arena-like content where spawns are not fixed and absorption/void bosses exist.
As such, you should regulate your Killer damage to content where you are certain of the spawns along to improve your clear times and consistency.
How do you utilize Killer awakenings and where do you plan to use the new Latent drops from Arena 3?