Table of Contents
Blade is our first limited 5★ Wind Type Destruction character and brings an exciting double-edged gameplay that balances his edginess with more edginess. Blade is primarily an HP-scaling character that uses his own health in lieu of Skill Points (SP) for his gameplay, which enables him to fit in a wide variety of teams and situations as a hypercarry or in a dual carry setup.
Blade is *checks notes* pretty. That’s it. End post. Thanks for reading, see you in Kafka’s post!
Jokes aside, Blade’s a pretty interesting character. Let’s get into why that is, his teams and playstyles, and potential gear options.
Please keep in mind that these are still early impressions and, while we are confident enough in them, are still subject to change.
Blade is pretty good as either your main or secondary damage dealer. While it can be tempting to run Sword in a standard double support team, most Harmony characters buff ATK as part of their kit, which Blade makes less effective use compared to other damage dealers. However, Blade’s low SP consumption effectively makes him a versatile option for many team slots, and most Harmony characters have AoE buffing access, usually with buffs that Katana can make very effective use of such as SPD and CRIT DMG. It’s also unlikely that a second Harmony character will math out to a larger damage gain than Knife.
One of Blade’s biggest hurdles comes in the form of his Light Cone options. Blade scales significantly better with HP than ATK, and most of the 4-star and F2P options either buff ATK, or have difficult to maintain conditions for DMG% or CRIT. The gap between his F2P options and his signature is fairly noticeable.
When Blade uses his Skill, it enhances his Basic ATK without ending the current turn, just like Qingque’s Skill. As a result, any buffs cast on Blade after he has used his Skill and before he has used his Enhanced Basic ATK will not tick down after he uses the Basic ATK. This includes abilities like Bronya and Tingyun’s Ultimates, as well as the Hellscape buff from his own Skill. It lasts for 4 Basic ATKs, since the first Basic ATK after immediately using Skill does not count towards the buff duration.
Using Blade’s Ultimate when above 50% HP lowers his HP down to exactly 50% before performing the attack, further increasing its damage if Blade has not already reached the damage cap. If Blade’s Ultimate is used when below 50% HP, he will go up to exactly 50% HP, forgoing the extra Talent stack but providing a potentially substantial self heal.
Blade’s Talent works on a stack-based system. He gains 1 stack every time his HP is reduced, either by sustaining damage or having his HP consumed by abilities, and he can gain a maximum of 5 stacks. At 5 stacks, Blade will immediately use a follow-up attack, striking all enemies on the field and restoring 25% of his Max HP. Note that Blade can only get 1 stack from every individual attack against him, so enemies that hit multiple times in one attack will not increase his Talent stacks more than once. DoT effects on Blade will also grant him one stack per individual DoT effect, meaning that if he takes damage from two different DoT debuffs, he will gain two Talent stacks. HP consumption doesn’t have this limitation, meaning that a sequence such as Ultimate (at >50% Max HP), Skill, and Enhanced Basic will grant Blade three Talent stacks immediately.
Bronya is a standout among Harmony buffers, as most other Harmony units focus on buffing ATK, while Bronya provides DMG% and CRIT DMG as well as Action Advance. When played as a buffer for Blade, there are two ways to run Bronya: slower than Blade (so she effectively doubles his turns), or with as much SPD as possible (effectively increasing Blade’s SPD to match Bronya’s SPD).
DEF reduction gets better the more you stack it, making the Pela and Silver Wolf duo another standout support option. Keep in mind that Silver Wolf can only debuff one enemy per attack, so Blade’s AoE damage cannot take full advantage of her debuffs.
Luocha is an incredibly potent Abundance option in general. He allows Blade to stay topped up through his repeated self damage, can cleanse debuffs Blade receives, and can dispel enemy buffs with his Ultimate. Blade’s real synergy with Luocha comes in his ability to keep Blade above 50% HP, meaning that whenever Blade casts his Ultimate he’ll receive the full damage boost. The cleanse is also another important consideration. While Blade is incredibly durable by nature, that won’t stop him from dying if he happens to be hit by multiple CC abilities in a row.
While Blade is a fairly versatile character, he does have some anti-synergies — namely, characters that prevent him from taking damage. Because gaining Charge stacks requires Blade to lose HP, Preservation units that provide him with shields are anti-synergistic with him.
Other anti-synergistic units include characters with high aggro or ones with Taunt abilities, like Preservation Trailblazer and Clara. While there may be some room to run Blade with characters in this category due to enemy AoE damage, it’s not recommended due to it being unreliable.
While we mentioned Luocha in the previous Notable Synergies section, there are potential anti-synergies between the two as well. For example, Blade is constantly dropping his HP, which can result in him triggering Luocha’s Skill auto-heal, leaving other characters without the emergency healing they can usually rely on. Another thing to note is that Luocha’s Skill is generally beneficial since it cleanses crowd-control or stat debuffs, but removing DoT effects applied to Blade can actually prevent him from accumulating additional Charge stacks for more follow-up attacks. Another consideration is when it comes to Blade’s Light Cones. Certain Light Cones such as A Secret Vow require him to be lower than a certain HP% threshold, which can be difficult to maintain with Luocha’s potent healing.
Like most damage dealers, Blade can be run as a “hypercarry” alongside two support characters and one sustain character. As Blade’s damage scales much harder with HP than ATK, this can make it difficult for Blade to make full use of most of our current buffers. However, Blade benefits fully from debuffers such as Pela and Silver Wolf, or supports who have large increases to stats other than ATK, such as Bronya. Buffers that increase other stats like Asta (SPD) and Tingyun (DMG%, Energy) can still be used, though Blade struggles to maximize their potential when he is the only damage dealer.
Blade tends to use up fewer Skill Points compared to other units and is relatively independent – meaning he doesn’t require many resources from his teammates in order to function. As a result, Blade’s best team compositions pair him with a more ‘selfish’ damage dealer like Seele or Yanqing, who can take full advantage of every buffer currently in the game. Since Blade only consumes SP when refreshing Hellscape, it’s very easy for the other damage dealer to aggressively use SP with Blade still benefiting from the party-wide or AoE effects of the support, such as Pela’s AoE DEF Shred or Bronya’s party-wide CRIT DMG Boost. Just keep in mind, however — Blade only consumes one SP per 4 turns, but he doesn’t generate any during that time. This means that when you run him with an SP-negative secondary damage dealer, you still need to make sure the other two characters are generating enough SP to keep the team afloat.
With Blade’s CRIT Rate traces and the extra CRIT Rate granted by Disciple’s 4-Pc bonus, Blade can effortlessly activate both Inert Salsotto’s and Rutilant Arena’s set bonuses. Blade’s damage output is roughly an even split between both Basic ATKs and follow-ups + Ultimates, making either of the two a viable option. This means that you’re free to use whichever set has better substats without much worry.
Longevous Disciple is Blade’s best Relic set since he scales with HP more than ATK, and 16% CRIT Rate is particularly strong due to the abundance of DMG% from his Skill and Planar Ornaments, making it very easy to activate either Inert Salsotto or Rutilant Arena.
Guard of Wuthering Snow makes for an effective set on Blade in teams where he’s expected to take large amounts of damage, either through enemies or simply through lack of healing. Blade doesn’t have much trouble activating the set due to his Ultimate, and the added healing and DMG Reduction makes it easy to keep his health around 50%.
Eagle of Twilight Line is an option for Blade. Action Advance is strong and Blade’s low SP requirements make efficient use of it. The 10% Wind DMG Boost loses some value due to the high DMG% on Blade’s Skill, but is still valuable. That being said, it’s usually outshadowed by his other options.
While 4-Pc options are great, 2-Pc combinations can also work pretty well depending on substats so make sure to consider those as well.
The Unreachable Side
Blade’s Signature Light Cone, The Unreachable Side, was made with his playstyle in mind and is – at this time – the only Destruction Light Cone that gives HP%. Since Blade consumes his HP before attacking, its passive will generally be active, ensuring high efficiency. Basically the best Light Cone for Blade with no real downsides.
A Secret Vow
If you don’t have The Unreachable Side, A Secret Vow is Blade’s next best option, even at S1. It grants an unconditional 20-40% DMG Boost depending on Superimposition, which is then doubled against enemies whose current HP percentage is higher than Blade’s current HP percentage. Blade won’t always trigger the extra DMG Boost because he heals himself regularly, but he will activate it fairly regularly on teams without Luocha, and he will always activate it against full health enemies. Overall, a very solid option.
Mutual Demise can easily be brought up to Superimposition Rank 5 and its condition is nearly impossible for Blade to not satisfy, granting an almost unconditional 24% CRIT Rate. However, its lower base stats and abysmal DEF turns Blade into far more of a glass cannon than his Max HP would suggest. That being said, it’s an acceptable alternative if you haven’t acquired either of the above options yet.
On the Fall of an Aeon
On the Fall of an Aeon is functionally little more than a stat stick for Blade, as he does not scale particularly well with ATK. However, its base stats are good and Blade can make use of the conditional DMG% passive upon Breaking enemies. An alternative to Mutual Demise if you want better defensive stats than a 3-star Light Cone can provide.
S1-S5 The Unreachable Side
S1-S5 A Secret Vow
S5 Mutual Demise
|>||All Other Options|
|CRIT%||SPD or HP%|
|HP% or Wind DMG%|
|CRIT > HP% > SPD (if not using Bronya) > ATK% > SPD (if using Bronya)|
Regarding SPD vs HP Boots: Take whichever has better subs. Exact SPD values only matter if Bronya is on the team. If she is, you want to make sure Bronya is slightly slower than Blade.
Regarding HP% vs Wind DMG% Sphere: it depends on several factors. Generally, if Blade has The Unreachable Side and is buffed by Bronya, HP% sphere is better. If Blade only has one of those two things, HP% and Wind DMG% spheres are about equal. Otherwise, Wind DMG% is better.