Arknights Vanguards

Like I said last week, I’m going to be covering Vanguards and that’s what I’m going to be talking about. To start, what makes a Vanguard different from every other class? In short, it is their early round abilities and low to mid range cost. Unlike Guards, there are a lot less subsets, two if we’re being specific. However, the Vanguards abilities are also much more connected to a certain game mechanic. In order to get a better grasp of the class, I feel it appropriate too quickly this mechanic first. 

In previous blogs, I have continually mentioned deployment cost. I have never really went into great depth about it because I felt the mechanic was pretty self explanatory. There are units and those units need a cost to deploy them, simple. However, with Vanguards being so dependent on the deployment system, it probably best I explain the system here. At the beginning of every round you start with some DP or deployment points and these point generate every few seconds, eventually capping at 99. These points are used to deploy units. Each operator has a designated cost assigned to them and when deployed their cost is subtracted from your DP. Overall, thats the gist of the deployment system. Other feature such as unit cool down are more specific to classes than the actual deployment mechanic. 

Now that we’ve talked about what DP is, I can explain how Vanguards are related to it. To start off, no matter what subset all Vanguards dabble in DP generation. How this is done varies between subsets, but because of this trait they are very good during early waves. To balance that though, they usually suffer in terms of everything else. Unlike other classes, they don’t particularly access stat wise like Guards or Defenders. In addition, most Vanguards only have two attack tiles and can only be deployed on the ground. The only silver lining to their mostly terrible mediocre stat line is their own deployment cost. With a few notable exceptions, Vanguards have the lowest deployment cost when looking at all factors. I say looking at all factors, because upgrading and rarity can have a huge impact on deployment cost. However, the point is Vanguards are cheap and most of the time, disposable. 

The first subset of Vanguards are the DP on kill (DoK) kind. What separates this subset from the other kind of Vanguard is their trait or passive ability. Specifically, this ability allows you to gain a deployment point every time an enemy is slain. The down side is that they can only block one enemy. However, unlike the Guard Assassins from last week, there isn’t anything particularly good about this single block. Still, this trait usually doesn’t pose a problem when DoKs are used properly. In most scenarios, DoKs are usually the first units deployed to build up DP and the pulled out for more efficient operators. This is supplemented by their other trait which allows for the full return of their DP cost when pulled back. 

On the other hand, we have what I called DP generators. What differentiates this subset is their abilities and block. Unlike DoKs they don’t have a DP related trait and rely solely on their abilities to generate points. Unfortunately, this severely limits their overall viability on a team. In Arknights, an operator’s ability is what defines them and makes them unique. Out of the three potential abilities an operator can use, only one can be equipped at a time. By having your DP generator equip their DP generating skill, they are locked into generating DP and nothing else. A DoK can remain viable in later waves due to their abilities depending on the situations. However, once you’ve built up a substantial amount of DP, your DP generator will be dead weight. Well, I may have been rather harsh but my point stands, for dealing with enemies any other DPS class would be better. 

In the end, Vanguards are an important part of your team. They may not stick around, but they will aid in getting your other units out. There have been countless times I have been swarmed by enemy because I didn’t have enough DP to place operators. When used correctly, Vanguards will ensure that never happens. Next time, I’ll likely touch upon another ground class, Defenders. 

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