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The Banner Saga Guide – How To Build Stats, Will Power and Horn


The Proving Ground in The Banner Saga is the place where you pick-up your units, assign their turns on the Initiative Bar, and assign Status Points amongst your units.

You’ll see the following Stats on your units:

Armor
The health in The Banner Saga comprises of Strength and Armor. Armor is the outermost covering on a soldier which absorbs the most amount of damage.

To give you a better understanding, let us take an example where the Strength of unit-1 is 10 and armor of unit-2 is 7. An attack on unit-2 will deplete its strength by 2 points as per the following formula:

Strength of Unit-1 – Armor of Unit-2 = Unit-2’s Strength Loss

In case the defensive unit’s Armor is higher than the attacking unit’s Strength; the attacking unit will have 10% chances of missing the attack.

Break
Break determines an attacking unit’s ability to smash an enemy’s armor. Unlike Attacking Power, Break is not dependent upon a unit’s Strength.

Exertion
Exertion works hand-in-hand with the Will Power. It determines how much Will Power a unit can use.

For example, if a unit has 2 Exertion and 2 Will Power; it can boost its movement for 2 additional squares or to deal 2 more damage.

Rank
Rank determines a unit’s rank and its Special Ability. Advanced Classes have a rank of 1 and it can only be attained after maxing out the basic abilities of a unit.

Strength
Attack power and health make up the Strength of a unit.

If you lower down the Strength of an enemy unit, it’s Attacking Power will also be lowered. The units with almost zero health are good-for-nothing when it comes to attacking.

Will Power
Will Power determines the ability of a unit to execute Special Attacks. It’s also used to boost Attack or Movement. I’ll talk more about Will Power later.

How to Build Stats
You can customize units far above their Base Stats up to a limit of 10 to 13 points. The Base Units have a limit of 10 whereas Rank-1 units have a limit of 11 points.

It has been announced that Advanced Classes will reach rank-3.

The basic technique is to determine what you want to do with a unit!? I mean, if you want to break armor of enemy units, you should invest in Break.

On the other hand, if you want to be a finisher, you may want to invest your points in Strength.

You should also consider adding some Exertion if your unit has a high Will Power. This will enable those units to utilize high Will Power more effectively.

If your units run low on Strength, you should invest in Break so that you can take out opponent armored units.

And lastly, try to have units, which have more than one use. For example; a unit with high Strength and Break is far more useful than a unit with high Strength.

You should play with different builds and combinations, and you’ll surely stumble upon the perfect build. A unit is good-for-nothing if it only has a high Armor and Will Power but no Exertion and Strength.

Movement
It’s important to have an idea about your units’ movement range, but it’s crucial to know about opponent units. Hover over an enemy unit and you’ll provided with information regarding that unit’s movement range.

Blue squares indicate a unit’s natural movement range.

As you already know that Will Power can boost movement of a unit; yellow squares indicate how far a unit can reach with Will Power. Natural movement range for a few units are provided below:

  • Archers = 3
  • Axemen = 4
  • Shieldbangers = 3
  • Warriors = 4

Furthermore, you can also get an idea about opponent units strengths and weaknesses. It’s a good idea to know these things and plan your strategy accordingly.

Will Power Strategy
As I’ve already mentioned, Will Power (combined with Exertion) allows a unit to deal more damage or travel farther on the squares. Will Power of a unit doesn’t regenerate over the course of battle unless a unit takes no action for a turn.

It’s not a good idea to keep on investing in Will Power; especially when you’re not utilizing it. A dead unit with 2 or more Will Power is a wastage.

Similarly, if you have a unit with 3-4 Will Power while a match ends; all this Will Power is wasted.

Generally, Will Power is used to kill or hurt an opponent unit, break the Armor of a enemy unit, or to travel a few squares to attack an unreachable enemy unit. So the Will Power should not be used to roam around the board and not attacking any enemy unit.

Using the Will Power and missing an attack is also not recommended as its equivalent to missing a turn.

Depending upon your play style, the Will Power can either be used at the beginning or end of a match. However, it’s advised that you distribute it fairly to counter any unwelcoming situation.

Because if you use all of your Will Power at the beginning of a match, you might get at a disadvantage near the end game and vice versa.

The Horn and The Will Power
You’ll see a horn hanging above the battling board.

When you kill an enemy unit, the Horn starts filling with a charge. You’ll also see a number above the Horn which indicates the number of charges on enemy’s horn.

Using the Horn grants your current unit with one Will Power/Charge. The developers have promised more horn powers in the future.

This is a handy feature and can turn the tides in a battle. However, you should know that your opponent also has the access to their Horn.

The best idea to use the Horn is to spend half of your Will Power at the beginning of the match and utilizing the Horn near the end game to get some extra Will Power.

Share your own tips and strategies with us in the comments!