The Rurouni Kenshin collab is nearly here, bringing along some decent cards with some new evolutions as well. I’ll be reviewing each and every card this collab REM has to offer, and discuss the practicality and usage of said cards.
Before we jump into it, we have to answer a quick question- Should you roll? The Rurouni Kenshin collab provides many strong leaders and subs, with Saito currently holding a position on the tier lists even months after his release in JP. While he is the only stand out leader, there are plenty more that can hold their own in the metagame, either as a leader or as a sub. However, you have to consider how much you’re willing to spend, in both magic stones and money IRL. The rates of this specific collab are better compared to many other collabs, but unless you’re willing to invest a lot into the REM or want to grab some more common cards to use as farming fodder, I would stay away from rolling more than three times. The nice part is- there are plenty of silvers that are useful for farming teams. Without further ado, let’s get into the review.
6 Stars (~6-7%)
Cards are graded according to this system in three separate categories- and combine to reach an overall grade. The overall grade is NOT an average of the other grades, but instead a “weighted average”, where clear implications of a card’s usage will be more heavily weighted towards. For example, Ra Dragon receiving an S in leader value and C in sub value does not drag down Ra Dragon’s grade, as he is basically made to be a leader. Treat the overall grade as a separate grade on how generally useful the card is.
If there’s a certain amount of analysis, I’ll have a short list of pros and cons under each card if you don’t feel like reading the analysis. Basically a TLDR. Also, if the card only has one or two overarching qualities (only useful for a specific purpose), I’ll skip the grading/pros+cons on that card and cut right to the chase. This will be most common for the lower rarity cards, but some high rarity cards may also be like this.
The four categories are listed below. Grades range from S+ all the way down to F (sometimes even further down the alphabet if the card really sucks). If you disagree with any of my grades feel free to comment your opinions.
First, we’ll talk about R/L Kenshin,and then focus on R/R Kenshin. R/L Kenshin is a full cross lead that can hit lots of damage, but suffers in the HP and RCV department. Damage control is also a bit of an issue. He’s most commonly paired with Ilmina, which gives you a 7×6 board with plenty of space to cross. However, the two 25% shields aren’t enough to push Kenshin up on the tier lists, and the team suffers in newer dungeons where large hits are far too common. His ranking will be wherever Ilmina’s is, and weakness and strengths will also be identical as long as they get paired together. It’s still a strong team, and the 25% shield opens a few more doors- just not enough doors.
R/R Kenshin is interesting. I thought he was pretty promising at first- at the time he had the highest multipler for a 7×6 leader. There were definitely options to pair him with. However, over the past few months, it doesn’t seem like Kenshin is really cut out to be a leader. There are too many leaders just better at what he does, and there aren’t many strong pairings to begin with. You could pair him with his R/L form, but even then there’s some HP and RCV issues.
It’s pretty clear that this Kenshin is better off being a sub. Sadly, Kenshin’s 3x fire attack only lasts for one turn, and there are usually better burst options along with higher multipliers overall. His burst is specifically for attribute instead of type, which does makes him more flexible than other burst counterparts. His awakenings (especially the 7 combo awakening) still makes him a versatile sub on many teams. Overall, the second form of Kenshin is more suited to be a sub, but his flexibility makes him quite good at what he does.
Ever since his release in Japan, week after week Saito’s split ult has held his place on tier lists. While he isn’t considered a top tier leader, he’s consistently mentioned on tier lists across the community as well as Setsu’s averaged tier list. This is an impressive feat in and of itself, and Saito’s consistency as a high tier leader shows definite promise.
Saito’s leader skill scales from 4x attack with 6 orbs all the way up to 16x attack with 12 orbs. This is an insane amount of damage, and having no skyfalls as part of his leader skill makes controlling damage exponentially easier. His active skill is a nice predra killer, although inheriting over it is usually more common as his active only targets one.
His leader value wouldn’t be where it is without the existence of Awoken Ichigo. When they pair together, you’re granted with 1.5/168/2. The damage can go even higher with Ichigo’s burst active, and the high RCV makes stalling very easy. The only thing holding this pairing back is the 1.5x HP, which is a tad lacking. In many scenarios the attendance of a shield active is required. Other than that, if you like dark row teams and big numbers, this is the lead for you.
You could tack a Fujin active anywhere and it would turn a low tier card into a high tier one. Hiko Seijuro started out as already a pretty decent card, and overall he’s a well rounded leader as well as a sub. Other than the active, he has a leader playstyle very similar to Krishna with a higher multiplier and focusing on TPA/combos instead of a traditional hybrid mixture of both TPA and rows. Sadly, even with such a leader skill, he pales in comparison with today’s top tier leaders. He’s strong enough to be noted, but not strong enough to justify playing him if you have better leaders.
Great inherit for basically every team that has trouble bypassing damage absorbs- anything you could do with Fujin’s active you can also do with this one. His awakenings and balanced typing (latent killers) also makes him a strong candidate to actually be on the team instead of being an inherit. Overall, he’s a card that can be used basically anywhere, and is a pretty valuable pull.
This guy’s value dropped pretty heavily after Resolve Killer Awakenings were introduced (see Norn Analysis). His value will continue to drop as more monsters come out with this new awakening. There’s a bit of hope for him- a light at the end of the tunnel. I’m suspecting that in order to counter Resolve Killer Awakenings, Gungho will add absolute shields for enemies. For example, Enemy A will not take damage if the damage is over100. If they do do that, then this guy’s value will take a small u-turn. Otherwise, he should begin prepping his gravestone.
Defense nulls have always found a place on farming teams. Balboa has been used as an inherit or a sub on plenty of ALB teams, and Sanosuke has been used similarly. With the additional of a 7 combo awakening, Sanosuke becomes quite valuable as an actual sub as well as an inherit.
Sanosuke is one of the few green cards with machine killer that can also equip machine killer awakenings. This aspect makes him quite useful for farming teams, specifically ALB. Depending on how future dungeons go, we could see him having a default spot on some farming teams. Machine Goemon announced in the previous stream could test his capabilities.
Even if he’s not useful for a specific dungeon, the defense null is always usable, and the fact that he deals damage after breaking the defense makes him a multi-use card. The HP cut feels out of place, but shouldn’t endangering (in most cases, at least). There are also several implications where dropping your HP is helpful. Overall, he’s a nice card to have for farming.
This is the definition of meh. There are a few silver eggs I’d rather pull than this, to be honest. 99 damage means he kills Zeal (100 damage absorb), but outside of that his active is a little weak as it only targets one, and so is the rest of the card. 3 light rows are nowhere near impressive, and having only one killer and no overlapping killer latents doesn’t make him useful in the slightest for farming, either.
His active is decent, kinda a better version of Hanzo (albeit a longer cooldown). Bind clearing and orb changing makes him similar to Ras, but I don’t see him having a spot on any teams. His orb change isn’t rare or anything, it can hazard clear but so can many other actives. The bind clear isn’t worth the stats and mediocre awakenings. Unless farming builds need him for both parts of his active (bind clearing and orb change), I can’t see him doing anything.
Makimachi Misao [A]
Her active is comparable to Chiyome, but that’s really not much to brag about. Back when killer awakenings were a newer thing and double killers were rarer, Misao was pretty promising. She still is now, as her low cool down makes her a very attractive SI base. Even as a silver, Misao has quite an impressive awakening and active set, and being balanced type, she has the ability to equip every killer latent. Depending on the dungeon, she can carry your damage on farming teams.
Sadly, outside of farming teams, she’s not as good compared to many other cards. She does have the killers and the active skill, but is outclassed in consistency and stats.
Komagata Yumi [B+]
Actually looks like a possible placeholder for the new fire Myr (as an inherit, of course), and as a silver it’s pretty impressive to have two SBR along with a shield active. For people without a stronger shield option, she can work although the length (1 turn) is mediocre at best. On a fire Myr team, she could help tank attacks that Myr’s heart cross shield normally wouldn’t survive. Pretty conditional uses, but the option is there for sure.
Kamiya Kaoru [A+]
Her usefulness hasn’t really changed, as ALB and other farming teams still find her quite useful. She’s comparable to Vaan, and often regarded better as on farming teams 50% heal is usually better than one turn of haste. As long as farming teams like ALB stay relevant, her active skill will as well.
Takani Megumi [B-]
She was not a bad inherit back when heart cross was a bigger thing, but now she’s kinda lost her home. As heart cross slowly eroded in effectiveness due to meta shifts, her usefulness did as well. the introduction of Tamazo Grodin even further dug her into her grave. Still a decent inherit on Myr teams and such, but as said before, her usefulness is slowly dropping…
Honjo Kamatari [A]
Actives that deal 99 damage are commonly tendered specifically to take out Zeal in dungeons (100 damage absorb). Other than that, Kamatari serves as a decent button sub with his true damage and 3 skill boosts, but only having 99 damage limits the dungeons you can button. He does have 3 skill boosts, so inheritance over the original active is a possibility. One of the only mass attacking true damage collab cards that is silver, so very decent for his rarity.
Myoujin Yahiko [C]
Not a bad active considering the cooldown, but there so many actives like it that it’s easy to neglect Yahiko as the rest of his card isn’t anything special. There’s really no reason to inherit his active skill, meaning that being used as a sub is really the only option. His awakenings don’t stand out, the devil killer specifically isn’t impressive, and his stats are below average except for his fairly high attack state (rip RCV).
Udo Jin-e [B]
Similar to Yumi, he’s basically a watered down version of a stronger cards. The inheritable delay and orb spawn makes high a pretty high quality silver. Not enough to compare to rarer cards, but strong for a silver. Sadly, it’s much harder to use this delay on rainbow teams, as the orb spawn can get in the way.
This collab offers a few really fine cards (specifically the 6 stars). The rest of the cards can’t be called “bad”, because most of them aren’t. Many of them are just outclassed, and unless you’re a newer players without access to a delay or to a shield, looking specifically to farm, or whatever the silvers and 5 stars have to offer, rolling anything under 6 stars probably won’t be useful to you.
In the end, deciding on how to roll comes down to what you’re looking for. If you’re looking specifically for Light Fujin, you’re probably gonna have to whip out your wallet. Others may just want to stock up on Kaorus for their farming teams, and how much you decide to spend or not spend is completely up to you. As for my fellow non-IAPs out there, I suggest that you roll no more than 3 times in an attempt to strike gold. Overall, this collab has the best cards locked at the highest rarity (no surprise there).
For those of you ready to binge the dragon’s paw, best of luck to you. And for those of you willing to settle for the free roll and maybe another one or two, good luck to you as well. That’s all for this review, I’ll give updates on what I roll once the REM comes. Potato✩PAD, out.