The Norns comprise three older Godfest Exclusives: Urd , Skuld , and Verdandi who all possess powerful board changers but have slowly fallen out of favour due to the inability to successfully use on current meta teams. However, with the release of their new split evolutions, they gain dramatic improvements to their capabilities as a sub due to the addition of 7 Combo and Follow Up Attack awakenings.
These two awakenings are some of the most powerful ones currently available as it can dramatically shift your playstyle and strategies when playing through challenging content. Furthermore, both 7 Combo and Follow Up Attack help comprise what I like to call the “Holy Trinity” of powerful awakenings with Guard Break being the third.
This article will examine the Norns new found viability as well as providing advice on how to maximize their potential. In addition, I will touch upon the other new split evolutions to better aid you in your decision making of which one to pursue.
—video coming soon—
The Holy Trinity
The Holy Trinity of awakenings ( ) are the three most powerful traits a monster can have. However, due to their relatively young age, they are not commonly seen across many cards. Thus, cards that do possess at least one will gain significant value while we wait for cards/evolutions to trickle in from JP.
Follow Up Attack
Prior to this batch of new evolutions, it was challenging to have Follow Up Attack as it was restricted to rare Monster Hunter Collab and June Bride cards. Thankfully, with the release of the Norns, players now have greater access to Follow Up Attack in a wider array of colours.
Follow Up Attack enables you to match a column of heart orbs (has to be exactly 5 or 6 in a 7×6 board) to deal 1 true damage after your attack. This single point of true damage will execute any resolve boss that was successfully killed and prevent any of the 1% abilities from ever occurring.
This ability to trivialize resolve encounters will make what were some of the most challenging encounters trivial as you no longer have to dance around with Gravities, Delays, or damage control. As such, the new challenge will to have at least 5 heart orbs along with sufficient puzzling/combo skills to maximize the remainder of the board.
This will breathe new life into guaranteed heart orb generating actives such as Mel and WeeJas ; however, the 6 orbs from WeeJas have applications for the future 3×3 box awakening as you can safely close off those 9 orbs through two heart combos.
One last thing to note about Follow Up Attacks is that they can deal 1 additional damage to exceptionally high defense encounters. This means you can potentially ping them for 13 (instead of 12) damage every turn. Small/niche application, but worth mentioning.
Urd and Verdandi are both 5-star Godfest Exclusives which means they should be easier to acquire due to their lower rarity. While Skuld is superior choice (outside of colouring/typing situations), she is far harder to obtain as a 6-star GFE.
However, if all you need is a Resolve killer, any 3 would work and if you are using a leader with outrageously high damage output, having one sub contribute less is not the end of the world.
Skuld is the strongest option due to the highest weighted stats and two 7 Combo awakenings, Verdandi opens up new doors for Kushinadahime teams. This is because of her Healer typing and mirrors the colour of your leaders. However, Haku will still remain the ideal choice due to the higher weighted stats, sub colour, and two TPAs .
Norns as a leader
Skuld is handsdown the strongest leader you can use from this series as she has the potential to beautifully pair with Julie if you were not fortunate enough to roll her yourself. This set up will provide RCV to compliment Julie’s HP component.
Which Norn evolution should I pursue?
You should almost always choose to pursue these new split evolutions as the 7 Combo and Follow Up Attack awakenings are simply too powerful to pass up. Furthermore, all of these evolutions gain significantly higher weighted stats at the cost of losing your sub attribute.
The loss of a sub attribute is a slight damage loss overall (provided you could not hit 7 combos), but only if you were matching that elemental colour. However, it could cause issues when facing high defense encounters that you chip/ping down or if your team desperately requires that specific colour to function. Thankfully, these situations are niche at best and you can confidently make the swap for all the Norns.
The Sonias all received new split evolutions that remove their sub colour, change their typings,award additional weighted stats, grant bind immunity, and provides them with a 7 Combo awakenings.
While all of this sounds positive overall (which it is), there are some drawbacks you should be aware of. All the Sonias still retain their row awakenings which is somewhat counter intuitive to the 7 Combo awakening as it is challenging to form a row and then make 6 additional combos without an active skill being used. This will often lead to one of your offensive awakenings going to waste in most encounters.
Furthermore, the Sonias were not often used as subs as they had difficulty fitting on most meta teams due to rows falling out of favour. However, Blue Sonia was often used to the critical success of mono water teams for her massive base HP.
Water teams tend to have sufficient RCV/multipliers to compensate for Blue Sonia’s 0-base recovery and the large injection of health often helped survive various preemptives and mechanics. As such, you may or may not wish to change your Blue Sonia if you are reliant on her health as you may or may not have other 7 combo subs available.
Sonias as leaders
Sonias were popular leaders back in the day; however, they were quickly replaced by various stronger leaders as their tankiness and low damage could not compete.
These new evolutions dramatically bump up their damage output, but change their RCV component to HP (while also boosting different types). I have never been a fan of only HP leads as they may be able to tank a hit or two, but will have a difficult time in healing it back up. This will become problematic in sustain-based dungeon or those with challenging mechanics as you will eventually run out of health.
Thus, we need to look for potential RCV leadership pairings, but the problem is, most row teams are on the decline while also having to take into consideration your typing restriction.
As such, I feel that the Sonias can still make reasonable leaders for mid-game content, but will falter when you must stall out challenging spawns or have to go through longer dungeons as you cannot simply blow up every single floor due to being orb hungry.
Zuoh looks cool but his revamped leader skill is not powerful enough to warrent using and he was rarely used overall. Granted he still retains his Dragon Killer , but Hakus tend to equip the killer form while also having amazing RCV instead of 0.
I have never been a fan of the jammer
meta playstyle as it faces an uphill grind to use. Cards that produce Jammer orbs cannot be feasibly used across other teams so GungHo has only released a few that are viable. As such, you struggle to find powerful options to use alongside a non-intuitive playstyle.
With that being said, the new Denebola has the potential to become a strong jammer-based leader. Denebola is able to achieve 324x ATK along with 43.75% damage reduction when matching only 2 jammer combos and along with 4 other combos. This is actually quite reasonable as you only need 6 jammer orbs for maximum multiplier but can also use 1 for 144x. Furthermore, your damage reduction shield is tied to combos, not jammers, so you can always have a defensive multiplier. This leads to a much higher degree of safety/consistency as you are able to play without jammers while you charge up actives.
In all honesty, you should be able to utilize just a single Jammer combo for 144x as that should be sufficient when paired with Denebola’s dual TPA. Furthermore, Denobola’s base active skill is on a short 3-turn cooldown which means you will have 3 Jammer orbs present 2 out of 3 turns.
If jammers are not your jam, you should elect to pursue the other Denebola evolution as it provides more awakenings including the 7 Combo. This enables her to function as a tremendously hard hitting sub as you have dual TPA, God Killer , and 7 Combo along with a 3-turn base cooldown you can easily inherit over.
Regardless, Denebola has been pushed back into relevancy.
The newly released split evolutions add tremendous value to your Monster Box as we are now entering the era of Follow Up Attack. Moving forward, players will have easier ways to deal with resolve and we are only missing a Dark card with Follow Up Attack.
Which of these evolutions are you most excited about?
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