In this chapter you can find the most important information about the character progression system used in The Banner Saga 3. The majority of the progress is done by leveling up your heroes, increasing their stats, unlocking their abilities and giving them Heroic Titles. We also write about artifacts that can increase certain stats of your heroes or even unlock new abilities.
- Characters' main stats
- Reaching new ranks (levels)
- Unlocking abilities and Heroic Titles
- Equipping heroes with artifacts
- Party management
Characters' main stats
The Banner Saga 3 has the same main stats as the previous games in this series:
- Armor - determines the number of Armor points. Remember to increase this stat for your fighters and Varl - they fight in the first line and can attract enemy attention.
- Strength - a very important stat. It determines the amount of damage dealt by a particular character and their amount of health points. All of your characters should have this stat at the highest level, even those who fight at a distance or serve as a support for the party. These characters won't die that easily when they get attacked by your enemies.
- Willpower - determines how many Willpower points a given character has. You can spend Willpower points on extending your movement reach, strengthening your attacks and using abilities. This stat should also be developed on a regular basis but remember that Willpower points can also be gained in other ways (e.g. by having high morale or by using certain artifacts).
- Exertion - determines the amount of Willpower points spend on a particular action. A very important stat that makes Willpower points even more helpful. All your characters should have this stat on the highest level.
- Armor Break - determines how many Armor points you can deplete with your attack. Don't ignore this stat because many powerful enemies are well-armored. This means that breaking their armors is very important.
Additional Note: Your heroes start The Banner Saga 3 with a high level so their stats should already be well-developed. You can of course develop them even further but don't try to have all the stats on the highest possible level. Some of them aren't that useful for characters with specific specializations. For example, an archer doesn't need to have Armor on the maximum level.
Reaching new ranks (levels)
The leveling up mechanism (promoting to new ranks) used in The Banner Saga 3 is the same as the one from the previous games. However, this system is rather unusual. We will only remind you its most important rules:
- You don't get classic experience points. The only way to level up a given character is to have them defeat a certain number of enemies. This is especially important for support characters. Try to create opportunities for these heroes that will allow them to eliminate opponents (preferably those enemies who were weakened by other party members). Thanks to that they won't stop developing and remain at a lower level.
- Eliminating a certain number of enemies isn't the only requirement for leveling up. You also have to "pay" for a promotion. You need to spend a certain amount of renown points. Your characters start the game at already high levels which means that you will need a lot of points for them to level up.
- Characters who are useful on a battlefield should have priority when it comes to leveling up. You should also have a few extra points because you can spend them on other elements.
Unlocking abilities and Heroic Titles
Abilities in The Banner Saga 3 work in the same way as they did in the previous games in this series. You can unlock and develop them when your character reaches a new rank. Active abilities have to be used manually during fights (you use them just like regular attacks). Passive skills don't require your involvement.
Heroic Titles are a new feature found in The Banner Saga 3. You can assign them to your heroes by leveling them enough. Open the character sheet and press the new button displayed in the upper part of the screen located next to the button that shows you information about a hero (see the picture above).
The game offers a few Heroic Titles. Choose the one that will be most suitable for a given character. For example, a Varl can gain a lot if you choose a title that increases his strength; a fighter with a shield can make a good use of a title that grants him a bonus when he is standing near other party members. A hero can have only one Heroic Title - choose wisely.
Each Title has a few unlockable levels (ranks). You get them by spending renown points - each new rank is more expensive. You should start with unlocking 2 or 3 levels. The rest of the levels should be unlocked once you level up all the most important party members and you deal with all situations that require you to spend renown points (e.g. purchasing supplies).
Equipping heroes with artifacts
Artifacts are still available in The Banner Saga 3. They work in the same way as they did in the previous games - each hero can use only one artifact. Don't assign these items randomly. Always read their descriptions and then give them to heroes that need them most. For example, an artifact that increases strength or gives a new offensive skill should be assigned to a fighter.
Artifacts can be bought in markets. However, doing that isn't recommended. The game gives you the option to transfer artifacts obtained in the previous games. On top of that, The Banner Saga 3 rewards you with even more items than before. They can be received by choosing certain dialog options or by having conversations with characters. Check our walkthrough if you need information on when you can get these artifacts.
Winning battles that feature waves of enemies is a new way of acquiring artifacts. Defeat enemies from all waves to receive a new item that will be useful to your most important characters.
Just like in the previous games, The Banner Saga 3 allows you to have six characters in your party. You can almost always choose your line-up which is very important. Try to have a diverse party - you should command Varl, fighters and at least one archer. The Banner Saga 3 features new units - Dredges. They are definitely worth recruiting but you should learn about their abilities and test them out in a less challenging battle before you decide to add them to your party.
The developers didn't make any changes to the injury system. Your heroes can receive them when they get knocked down on a battlefield, that is when enemies manage to deplete their Strength points (health). An injured character needs a few days to heal (this time gets extended when you play on hard difficulty level). Try to avoid these situations, especially when you have a chapter that requires you to participate in a series of fights. If most of your main heroes get injured, you can be forced to use weaker characters or you can even have problems with having a full party.
Additional Note: We want to remind you again that you can level up only those characters who participate in fights. Because of that you should change your line-up from time to time. Otherwise, you can be in serious trouble when one of your more important characters gets injured and you replace them with a weaker hero.