Arena Guide Part 5 – The Best AO Monsters

by ypsw on December 28, 2016
Arena Guide Part 5 – The Best AO Monsters
April 16, 2019

In Part 5 of the Arena Guide Series we look at the best AO Monsters for each primary AO role and discuss what makes them so good at their jobs.

What’s Best for AO?

A top tier AO clears quickly and reliably and is weak to very few AD. To achieve this, your goal is to follow one of the three models described in the Speed Tuning guide: fast invincibility buffer (Chloe team), will shield runes, fast ATB buffer. All three AO styles have one thing in common, Support Monsters enable your Damage Dealers (DD) to pull off a combo. Ideally your combo clears the AD in one round of moves but, at the very least, your combo should be able to eliminate the biggest threats.

The best AO monsters tend to be multifunctional in providing effects, having a great lead skill and/or being an effective DD. You will notice that many Monsters appear multiple times in different categories of “best”, this is not a coincidence. However, since we always try to build teams rather than individual monsters, “best” depends on what style of AO you are aiming for. Below we look at the best AO Utility and DDs and explain why they are valued so highly.

Note that Monsters that do not appear in the list can still be great; Summoner’s War is often a game of working with what you have rather than achieving a theoretical “best”.

Best AO ATB Boosters

tiana winds-of-change orion harmless-prank

These Monsters let the rest of your team move. Most of them provide secondary effects along with their +ATB like +SPD buff, +ATK buff, etc. Almost every AO will want a +ATB so you can drop your combo uninterrupted.

  • Tiana: Only monster in the game that gives +ATB and AOE Buff Strip in the same turn. Together with Galleon, the two provide all four essential effects in two turns.
  • Orion: Gives AOE +ATB and random single target Buff Strip, defense break and stun in one turn. Also has built in turn cycling with Violent effect on his first skill.
  • Bastet: Gives AOE +ATB, +ATK and minor protection with AOE shield in the same turn. Also has AOE -DEF with other bonus debuffs.
  • Bernard: Gives AOE +ATB and +SPD in the same turn. Has relatively high base speed for an ATB buffer which makes him easier to rune for speed and his +SPD buff to his team lowers the SPD requirements for the other three AO units to be Speed Tuned. His leader skill works well with Lushen. He is farmable and an overall great unit from early to late game.
  • Megan: Gives AOE +ATB, +ATK and minor protection with AOE +DEF in the same turn. Her leader skill is acceptable when lacking better options. She is farmable and works well with Lushen.
  • Kabilla: Gives AOE +ATB and minor protection with AOE Critical Reduction in the same turn. She has the highest base speed of any ATB buffer at 120 making it substantially easier to rune her for speed and ensure first move.

Best AO Buff Stripers

triton mega-tsunami chiwu sleeve-attack

These Monsters ensure that your -DEF Monster can apply his Debuffs. Buff Strippers become increasingly more important as you climb the Arena ladder. Towards the top you should expect every AD to run Will runes on most Monsters and often at least one Shield set.

  • Tiana: Only monster in the game that gives AOE Buff Strip and +ATB in the same turn. Together with Galleon, the two provide all four essential effects in two turns.
  • Triton: The second best AOE Buff Strip in the game with -ATB in the same turn. This gives some buffer against Nemesis runed healers.
  • Chiwu: Gives AOE Buff Strip and +24% SPD lead.

Best AO Defense Breakers

galleon time-to-loot luer crime-alert

These Monsters raise the chances that your DD will kill the enemy in one turn by increasing enemy damage taken. Unless you run Lushens or Bombers you will need an AOE -DEF. Unfortunately there are not many in the game and Galleon is by far the best as he also buffs +ATK in the same skill.

  • Galleon: Only monster in the game that gives AOE -DEF and +ATK in the same turn. Together with Tiana, the two provide all four essential effects in two turns.
  • Luer: Gives AOE -DEF and -ATB in the same turn. Since his -DEF skill no longer glances, he is as reliable as Galleon.

Best AO ATK Buffers

galleon time-to-loot bastet oasiss-blessing

These Monsters raise the chances that your DD will kill the enemy increasing your damage. The +ATK Buffer you choose for your AO will depend greatly on the style of AD you use and how tightly your Monsters are Speed Tuned.

  • Galleon: Only monster in the game that gives AOE +ATK and -DEF in the same turn. Together with Tiana, the two provide all four essential effects in two turns.
  • Bastet: Gives AOE +ATB, +ATK and minor protection with shield in the same turn. Also has AOE -DEF with other bonus debuffs.
  • Sieq: Gives AOE +ATB, +CR in the same turn. Works well with Lushen providing the +CR that Lushen often needs and also being able to finish off Fire units that Lushen missed killing.
  • Aquila: Gives AOE +ATB, +CR in the same turn. Has the option to Buff Strip instead if the other team has Will runes.

Best AO Leaders

psamathe trinity seara chiwu

These Monsters give your team free stat bonuses. Though many Monsters provide Leader Skills, the ones listed here are also excellent DDs. Chiwu is the exception as he brings Buff Strip.

  • Psamathe: One of only three monsters in the game with +33% SPD lead. He has decent AOE damage potential and some utility with unreliable buff strip on first skill and unreliable AOE Increase Cooldown on his second skill.
  • Trinity: One of only three monsters in the game with +33% SPD lead. Has high AOE damage potential and does not glance since Dark element.
  • Seara: Gives 24% SPD lead. Her bombs do high ignore defense damage and stun while her third skill does high AOE damage. She has built in turn cycling and has her own +ATB on Critical Hits with her S1. Overall she is a great monster.
  • Chiwu: Gives +24% SPD lead and AOE Buff Strip.
  • Alicia: Gives +44% ATK lead. She has two high damage AOE skills. The extra turn provided by her third skill usual ensures that she will get to use both of her AOEs. Her +15% CR from awakening makes him easier to rune for damage.
  • Zaiross: Gives +33% ATK lead. He is the only monster in the game with high damage reliable AOE Reset Cooldown. He has two high damage AOE skills and is one of a small handful of Fire element AOE DD. His +15% CR from awakening makes him easier to rune for damage.

Best AO Damage Dealers

seara lushen zaiross alicia

It goes without saying that successful AO will have slots reserved for Damage. The best DDs do Area of Effect (AOE) damage, meaning they hit all enemy units. AOE DDs let you win in a minimal number of turns since you do not have to kill each enemy monster individually.

  • Seara: Her bombs do high ignore defense damage and stun while her third skill does high AOE damage. She has built in turn cycling and has her own +ATB on Critical Hits with her S1. Also gives 24% SPD lead. Overall she is a great monster.
  • Lushen: Only monster in the game with high damage reliable AOE Ignore Defense damage. Double Lushen can be used with great success at essentially all Arena Grades.
  • Zaiross: Only monster in the game with high damage reliable AOE Reset Cooldown. He has two high damage AOE skills and is one of a small handful of Fire element AOE DD. His +15% CR from awakening makes him easier to rune for damage and his +33% ATK lead is decent.
  • Alicia: Has two high damage AOE skills. The extra turn provided by her third skill usual ensures that she will get to use both of her AOEs. Her +15% CR from awakening makes him easier to rune for damage and her +44% ATK lead is good for AO.
  • Teshar: Has highest base attack of any monster in the game and a high damage AOE with his third skill. His +15 SPD awakening bonus makes him easier to rune for speed based AO.
  • Taor: Has high single target damage with freeze and decent AOE damage with -SPD in his third skill. His second skill is the best SPD scaling single target nuke in the game. His +15% CR from awakening makes him easier to rune for damage.
  • Lagmaron: Has high damage AOE with stun in his third skill. His second skill is the best SPD scaling single target nuke in the game. His +15 SPD awakening bonus makes him easier to rune for speed based AO.
  • Akhamamir: Has a high damage potential AOE that works well with Galleon or Mantura. His +15% CR from awakening makes him easier to rune for damage. He is the most accessible high damage AOE DD.
  • Poseidon: Has two relatively high damage AOE skills that disrupt enemy monsters using Nemesis runes. He has an acceptable +33% ATK lead.
  • SigeHas high base attack and high damage AOE and is Dark so he will not glance.
  • TosiHas high base attack and high damage AOE and is Light so he will not glance.
  • LiebliOnly usable on AO with Seara in a Bomb team but in that comp he is the best AOE Bomber in the game.

You may have noticed that most of the monsters in the list above are 4* and 5*. Don’t let this discourage you. Remember, these are the best monsters in the game for AO. There are many monsters that you can substitute to build a very comparable offense. If you have any of the monsters listed you should be incredibly pleased. If you do not have any of them read into why the monsters above are so good, they all have AOE effects and fulfill multiple roles, then look into your own box and try to figure out how to work with what you have.

Arena Guide Series

Tighten up your Arena game by reading the other guides in this Arena series:

This stuff can be pretty complex. If you have any questions or suggestions, leave a comment below and I’ll reply ASAP!

– ypsw

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