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Fire Emblem Heroes Wiki:Build Center/Ike: Vanguard Legend

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Quick Hero Info
Type
Icon Move Infantry.png Icon Class Red Sword.png
Stats
41 / 36 / 30 / 35 / 21
Exclusive skills

Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Orb.png Very high investment
Vanguard Glimmer
Stats: +Atk, -HP,-Def

A description has not been written for this build yet.

Build Icon Alternative.png Alternative
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Universal Crystal.png Medium investment
Budget Vanguard

A description has not been written for this build yet.

Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Orb.png Very high investment
Steady Vanguard

A description has not been written for this build yet.

Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Orb.png Very high investment

A description has not been written for this build yet.

Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Orb.png Very high investment
Aether Spiral
Click to show/hide build description 
This Ike build is to maximize the sustain from Radiant Aether. The idea behind this build is to allow Ike to trigger Radiant Aether on his first counterattack and to make it hit as hard as possible.

Fierce Breath give Ike 4 extra attack in contrast to Warding Breath giving Res. Every amount of attack counts and Fierce breath can help increase Ike's Radiant Aether damage. Special Spiral puts Radiant Aether on a two turn cooldown, meaning Ike will instantly charge it once attacked due to Fierce Breath. The C slot is flexible as usual, however skills that can help Ike do more damage will come through in some instances. Some ideas are Odd Atk Wave or Def Smoke. The Quick Riposte seal helps just incase the initial Radiant Aether doesn't one shot, in the case where the last followup occurs you will have Radiant Aether fully charged after combat.

Guard can mess with this build, making Ikes special charge slower, so be wary of it.
Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Dueling Crest.png Arena
Universal Crystal.png Medium investment
Greil's Legend
Click to show/hide build description 
This Legendary Ike is set up to be able to duel many threats in the current Arena metagame.

Ragnell and Warding Breath turn Ike into a fantastic mixed tank (even with -Res IV). If you instead want to pump up his already good Defense, go with Steady Breath. Either option works well with Quick Riposte 3 and Radiant Aether, allowing him to activate his Special virtually every fight on the Enemy Phase.

The B slot generally runs Quick Riposte, but if you can afford to run the Sacred Seal (and you probably should), this slot becomes very flexible. Guard is one of the best options for preventing special-heavy foes like Ayra, Mia, and Zelgius from activating their Specials and severely damaging him. It also helps immensely with the increase in Bold Fighter armored units. If one lacks Guard fodder or just wants another option, Swordbreaker works splendidly, allowing him to defeat the aformentioned Ayra, Mia, and Zelgius and deal with most, if not all sword units in the game. Swordbreaker also gives him a little Player Phase potential if you need it.

Ike's base C slot, Def Tactic, is already good as is and works very well on mixed team compositions. However, as with many Heroes, the C slot is flexible to fit the needs of your team.

Assuming you chose Guard 3 or Swordbreaker 3 as your B slot skill, Quick Riposte is a necessity on the Sacred Seal slot, as Ike can't double anything reliably without it. If you choose to run Quick Riposte 3 on the B slot, then Distant Def 3 and Close Def 3 are worthy options on the Seal slot.

Overall, this Ike is a great Enemy Phase duelist that claims a lot of kills against many of Arena's top threats.
Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Dueling Crest.png Arena
Orb.png Very high investment
Radiant Nuke
Stats: +Atk and -Spd/-Res
Click to show/hide build description 
Before I proceed with explaining this build, I must make known that this is based off Vanguard Glimmer (kudos to whoever came up with that amazing idea). However, instead of Ike only instakilling mages, this build goes one step further to allow Ike to instakill ANY non-blue unit (except Arden) on defense phase, provided the following conditions are met: Ike has this build, Ike has ally (or allies) with Atk-boosting skill and/or rally, Enemy has no Def buffs and no Pavise special.

To prove this, I have done the calculations myself with Ike put against the red unit (since green won't stand a chance) with the second highest Def, Draug.

Ike, with maximum Atk, has 39 Atk. With Ragnell (+16), Fierce Stance 3 (+6), and two ally Atk buffs (one field and the other combat, for +8 total), Ike has a whopping Atk stat of 69.

Draug, with maximum Def and normal HP, has 42 Def and 50 HP.

To instakill Draug, Ike's final damage must meet or exceed 50. Let the calculations begin: 69 Atk - 42 Def = 27 Dmg; 27 Dmg * 1.5 Glimmer = 40.5 Dmg; 40.5 Dmg + 10 Wrath = 50.5 Dmg

Boom.

But, wait, what if you cannot fulfil all the conditions (aside from having this build) to achieve this awesomeness? Well, then you can still safely say that you can instakill nearly every non-blue unit while on Def phase.

So, why choose this build? Well, other Ike builds generally allow for increased survivability and a guaranteed kill of any non-blue unit...after two hits. This build approaches survivability in another way: instakill. If your opponent can only get one hit in (provided he/she isn't using a brave weapon), Ike takes minimal damage; on top of that, your opponent dies. This build is very expensive, but is worthwhile if used properly.
Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Dueling Crest.png Arena
Hero Feather Darkened.png High investment
Freedom of Choice

A description has not been written for this build yet.

Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Orb.png Very high investment
Radiant Aether Bot
Click to show/hide build description 
This Ike is meant to survive in a way that may be considered unorthodox because this Ike survives by taking damage. I'm not talking about just taking hits (like most breath-based builds do), I'm talking about actual damage, but not to the point of dying. Ike already can survive physical damage with his naturally high DEF, but his RES stat is low, which is why I found Warding Breath appealing. With Warding Breath, his DEF and RES stats become closer together. He'll be able to survive green mages, green dragons, and physical attackers (eg. bows, swords, lances) which should be enough.

Once he takes a hit from anyone, he'll take a decent amount of damage, and then retaliate with Quick Riposte and ALWAYS activate his special, Radiant Aether. Because Radiant Aether's charge is even, Ike's breath skill uses it efficiently (if it was odd, he'd only gain 1 charge from some attacks). Because he'll have taken a decent amount of damage, his Wrath skill should be viable. Upon activation of Radiant Aether, his Wrath skill will activate and increase damage, which will, at the same time, increase health recovered. This is why I have named this build "Radiant Aether Bot;" it is primarily focused on the cycle of 1. surviving a blow, 2. retaliating and recovering at the same time through Radiant Aether and its supporting skills.

FYI: The C skill is really just flexible, but I have included Atk Tactic 3 as the skill because I generally pair up Ike with a glass range unit.
Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Universal Shard.png Low investment
Icon Move Infantry.png Infantry
Budget Vanguard
Stats: Neutral/Any
Passive Icon C.pngDef Tactic 3.png
 Def Tactic 3 / Flexible
Passive Icon S.pngEmpty Passive Icon.png
 Flexible

A description has not been written for this build yet.

Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Hero Feather Darkened.png High investment
Mage Killer

A description has not been written for this build yet.

Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Hero Feather Darkened.png High investment
Radiant Legend
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This build makes Ike a dual threat to melee and ranged users. His high defense and attack coupled with Quick Riposte 3 makes him hard for Axe and Sword users, as well as weaker Lance users to deal with during the enemy phase. If attacked he will always end up activating Radiant Aether or Ignis in any skirmish he gets into, provided he isn't OHKO'd or the enemy is running Guard 3. He is also a tough unit to face for Red and Green mages as well as Archers and Dagger users. In the enemy phase Ike's Def jumps up to 41 from his Distant Def 3 seal, making it very hard for archers and dagger users to deal much damage to him. Mages will also have a difficult time taking him down. He may only have 24 res with a res boon but with Distant Def 3 and Warding Breath he gains +10 Res giving him and effective 34 Res. If running Ignis his best bane is Spd as it's not an overly important stat due to Quick Riposte 3. If running with Radiant Aether, Ike can also have an HP bane as he will be healing himself almost every round. His C skill is entirely optional and can be replaced with just about anything to fit the needs of your team. Fast blue units like Linde, Delthea, Nephenee as well as tanky ones like Effie and Robin (Winter's Envoy) will also give Ike a hard time. Being a legendary hero any allies with earth blessing will also gain an additional +3 HP and +2 Atk. He is a great unit to have on the team and is more of an improved version of the original Ike being able to preform his duties and more.
Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Orb.png Very high investment
Back to the Roots
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This Ike is an amalgamation of he previous two versions in a sense. However, I think he strayed a little too far from the previous two Path of Radiance versions, and it just so happens that those two provide good things to his older version from Radiant Dawn.

Weapon: Honestly, nothing can beat a weapon with a built-in Counter skill, especially when its of the Preferential/Legendary variety. Sure, Counter weapons may have fallen off a little, but they still prove to be competent.

Assist: Any skills that are considered good like Reposition, Dual Rallies, etc are acceptable.

Special: Radiant Aether is a wonderful special that should have almost no reason to not be in his Special slot. But I suppose you can use that defense of his and use it to deliver some deadly flat damage with that bulky Defense stat.

Passive A: Steady Breath is infinitely better than Warding Breath on Ike. Instead on trying to patch up his weaknesses with his default skill, it is most advised to boost his extremities. Fierce Stance is also viable but you will lose that cooldown charge for more Enemy Phase attack.

Passive B: Quick Riposte is excellent for an Enemy Phase unit such as himself. Vantage will also work well.

Passive C: His default Defense Tactic works great already as a supportive skill. However, he is flexible and wield skills like Panic Ploy, Threaten Skills, etc.

Sacred Seal:Distant Defense is advised to lessen attacks from mages and staves and will work well with Ragnell. Close Defense is also an option if mages aren't you concern. Close Defense can help Ike with the dragons.
Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Hero Feather Darkened.png High investment
The Ultimate Aether
Icon Skill Assist.png Flexible
Stats: Neutral
Click to show/hide build description 
This build has one job, and only one job: To make Ike Aether anything and everything during enemy phase. When he gets attacked, Warding Breath will shave off two from Radiant Aether's cooldown by default; then Ike will naturally counter anything via Ragnell being Ragnell. When he does, most circumstances will trigger Heavy Blade on the first strike for another two off Aether's CD, which Quick Riposte will then ensure a follow up, which will be Aether. Except against the tankiest of blues, this will almost always outright kill the unfortunate victim, and except for blue mages like Linde (whose attacks tend to leave Ike reeling because his Res is weak even with Warding Breath and/or a Res Boon), the heal from Aether will likely set Ike's health back to the level at which this chain will work all over again. The end result: Ike becomes an almost completely self sufficient murder machine.
Dueling Sword.png Optimal
Build Icon Allpurpose.png All-purpose
Orb.png Very high investment
Spiral Power Vanguard
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This build attempts to maximize the power of Ike's enemy phase by making it so he can continuously activate Radiant Aether. The general idea is that after one battle in enemy phase, he'll activate his special, leaving Special Spiral 3 to activate and giving him a constant 2-charge Radiant Aether. This way, whenever he's attacked on subsequent enemy phases, Radiant Aether will always go off on his first attack, which will maximize the amount of HP he regains and hopefully KOing the enemy without another counter.

Warding Breath is chosen over Steady because Ike will need all the mitigation he needs for his Res stat, but both are interchangeable and is just a matter of what you prefer.

Attack Smoke 3 does an excellent job of debuffing large enemy groups, especially if Ike is thrown into a horde of them to tank. While it's primarily for sustainability, you can also choose to use Speed Smoke 3 so it minimizes the chances of Ike getting doubled.