Ose’s Viability in Shin Megami Tensei Dx2

First of all: that bulge.  He’s a strong cat man, purrr.  Oses are everywhere, but are they any good?  Let’s investigate.

Grade 54 Fallen Ose

Vitality: above average

Strength: above average

Agi/luck: average

Magic: below average

Innate Skills
PhysHades Blast6 MP120 DmgAll Foes
ElecMazionga6 MP100 DmgAll Foes
SupportCharge6 MPNext physical attack +125% damageSelf

Hades Blast + charge + accuracy buff = massive damage.

Archetype Skills
PassiveRetaliateAuto100 Dmg 50% chance of counter upon receiving physical damageSelfClear
PhysMegaton Press6 MP90 Dmg 30% CriticalAll FoesRed
SupportTetrakarn7 MPRepel all physical attacks for one turnAll AlliesYellow
PassiveStrength Amp IIAutoStrength +10SelfPurple
PassiveNull PhysAutoNullify Phys damageSelfTeal

Skill Talk

Clear’s retaliate is moderately useful for low level encounters. 

Red’s Megaton Press is a 7mp skill for 6mp that does a very similar action to his innate Hades Blast with added crit chance.  Red (aragami) archetypes tend to come with duplicate skills that are not favorable for most players.

Yellow’s Tetrakarn is a nice skill to have but seeing as he is an attack-type and not a support-type, his auto-ai will never use tetrakarn.  If you’re in manual-mode, tetrakarn can be helpful, but you would be better off finding a tetra-shift character like Azrael.

Purple’s strength increase is a flat increase and therefore only moderately useful.  With war brands with %phys increase, you’ll probably never notice ten strength missing.

Finally, Teal’s null phys is the main attraction that has made Ose so popular.  When one is immune to physical damage, one does not have to wear any sort of physical resistance.  Not only is is nice to nullify any physical attackers, it’s nice to be able to stack magical resistance to become a true tank character.  His above average health with some %phys increase life brands make for an annoying character to take down.  There are more than a few demons who are able to shut down an Ose, but I’ll get to that later.  Next up is the viability of his gacha skills.  These are what you get as a “premium skill” when you pull Ose from the gem summon.

Gacha Worthiness

Gacha Skills
FireAgi4 MP120 DmgOne FoeRed Gacha
RecoveryCharmdi3 MPRemove Charm, Charm resistance +30% for 3 turnsOne AllyYellow Gacha
RecoveryMedia6 MP25 RecAll AlliesPurple Gacha
PassiveMadnessAutoAilment success rate +10%SelfTeal Gacha

Red’s Agi isn’t too useful, seeing as he comes equipped with mazionga which suffices as an anti-ose/siegfried/abaddon ability.

Yellow’s Charmdi isn’t very useful as Mecharmdi can be transferred in and will remove all charm statuses from your entire team.  As I said earlier, he’s a attack-type demon, so it’s exceedingly unlikely that his auto-ai will use Charmdi.

Purple’s Media is another silly choice for Ose.  He should never be built as a healer or any +healing brands be given to him.

Finally, Teal’s Madness is simply a waste of space. Ose doesn’t inflict status ailments unless you give him that skill which is fine, but don’t expect the auto-ai to understand your decision!

Skills to Transfer to Ose

Our Ose does his best when he’s able to do massive physical damage.  The problem we often run into is that in PvP, about 90% of teams also have a physically immune individual.  It’s just a good idea, really, to limit the options of your opponent.  That’s why Teal Ose is so popular.  

My first pulled Ose was actually a red archetype.  I didn’t know Teal existed, so I loaded him up with an another magic attack along with the Agi I received in the first place.  New players will be new.  

Oni-Kagura from Setanta is my favorite skill to transfer in.  It provides Ose with a means of attacking a single target for one less MP than Hades Blast.  It also adds a 30% increased crit rate for that particular attack.  If you level it up to 6/6 from transferring from Setanta, you’ll get a 16% increased hit rate too.

Phys Boost from Fury Wu-kong.  It’s expensive, I know, but 15% increased physical damage is nothing to sneeze at.  Add 15% increased damage to 30% increased crit to 16% increased hit rate, you’ll be doing quite well. 

Other Decent Skill Transfers

  • Bloody Glee (3★ Silky (Red Gacha), 3★ Kaiwan (Purple Gacha), 3★ Koumokuten (Purple Gacha), 3★ Feng Huang (Red Gacha))
  • Savage Glee (4★ Orochi (Teal Gacha), 4★ Sarasvati (Purple Gacha))
  • Good Aim (3★ Kresnik (Teal Gacha), 3★ Isis (Yellow Gacha))
  • Endure (Horkos)

Equipping Ose With Proper Brands

Thankfully, there are quite a few viable options for branding Ose.  Divine brands allow him to recover 4 MP per wave which will help him to get his Charge off right away.  His next turn will have to be a pass, and either Oni-Kagura or Hades Blast on his third turn.  

Finding a way to put Ose in pole-position on your team is important.  If you have him in the second spot in turn order, it’s still doable, but you’re going to need divine brands and a ton of passing.

Another option, and the one that I myself went with is War brands.  If you set your War brands properly on his left arm, right arm and legs, you can achieve great heights of physical damage.  Let’s assume you’re stuck with 4* war brands on those three slots, upgraded to level 12.  Let’s also assume you went with physical% in the first spot.  Each brand should have 15% physical damage increase, for a subtotal of 45%.  Add in the brand set effect and you now have 65% (after 1.5 update).  Ose doesn’t have the most strength of physical attackers, but if you brand him right, that won’t really matter.  

For his two-set bonus, you need to ask yourself what he will be doing for you.  Is he going to be a PvP Ose or a PvE Ose?  Do you want him to be faster than all the other Oses.  Ward brands win out in my calculations no matter where you plan to take your Ose.  Auto-barrier will protect you from status ailments from any of your attackers for three whole turns.  If you can’t finish a fight in three turns, you’re out of your depth.  Trumpeter in Brands of Sin is a good benchmark of your overall DPS.

If you want to have your Ose in the top slot of your rotation, either pick slower (less Agi) team members, or set up speed brands as your two-set bonus.  If that doesn’t work, then work at getting some of the “lead brands” released in global 1.50.  These will jump your Ose in the rotation by one spot.  If you’re dealing with obnoxiously fast teammates, this may help you get into the position you need.

The last viable option are shield brands.  A good Teal Ose needs two things for a proper living.  Physical attack power and magic defense.  Since he has no innate weaknesses, it’s important to give him some extra robustness against magical attackers.  Shield brands dole out a whopping 30% magic resist for a two-set bonus.  I recommend setting your two-set bonus items on your head and chest slots, as it’s easier to swap them out than other slots.  

Where Ose Fails

His AI sucks.  At one point I put samrecarm on my Ose (for my own manual use) but quickly realized that when putting my furry friend on auto, he almost never used it, even when three of his teammates were felled.  Remember Vile Abraxis on the 35th floor of Aura Gate?  He drains physical but is weak to everything else.  If my Ose had his way, he would keep giving Abraxis health until my phone bursts into flames.

From what I can gather on various forums, it seems that Ose will only prioritize his Mazionga if he thinks that’s his highest damage ability.  So, if you built a magic damage Ose, I’m not talking to you.  If, however, you’re like the rest of us and stacked up his physical prowess, you’ll be greatly annoyed when your Ose gets stuck in his Charge + attack rotation until the cows come home.

This is the singular reason why I don’t recommend keeping any Ose on your defense team in PvP.  Even with the defense boost they added in 1.50, you just can’t count on your Ose to do the smart thing.  He’s best kept for manual use or for auto-ing scenarios where enemies aren’t physically immune.  Use him in good health, or until you find your first Siegfried.

Demons That Ruin Ose’s Day

  • Anyone with high magic attack 
  • Another ose/sieg/abaddon 
  • Rangda (phys repel + high magic)
  • Teal Quetzcoatl (phys repel + high repel + whole team rez)

Demons That Ose Wrecks

  • Hathor in Aura Gate 50
  • Zhong Kui, Metatron and anyone else without innate physical resistance

Demons That Pair Well With Ose

  • Zhong Kui (auto taraka //phys boost)
  • Prometheus (auto makara // magic reflect)
  • Sandalphon (auto sukuka // ev/ac)

Final Scoring

Physical attacker: B+

Magical attacker: D+

Tank: A-

Gacha skills: F

Innate Skills: B+

PvP Attack Team Viability: A-

PvP Defense Team Viability: D-

Overall Score: B

Mastering Your Brands in Dx2

So you want to learn the secrets of using brands to their most effective ends.  I don’t blame you.  Use this knowledge well, and you might be able to take those other PvP teams in SMT: Liberation Dx2 to task. 

Dx2 is one of the most entertaining and yet strategy-minded mobile games I’ve ever had the pleasure of playing.  While your demons are presented to you within the five archetypes: red, teal, orange, purple and common/gray, they are not really bound to their initial statuses at all.  A 4* Zhong Kui is presented to you as a hard hitting physical single-target who is weak to force, but you could make him into a caster with no weaknesses if you’d like.  It’s not recommended to ignore min/maxing but Dx2 is about making your team how you want to.  Here’s mine below:

How to Use Your Brands To Their Highest Potential

At the heart of the pliability that is inherent in Dx2 demon-customization system is the brand system.  The in-game tutorial likens brands to pieces of armor.  One for each demon’s head, chest, legs, right and left arms.  Each brand comes with a rarity, specialization, and unique stat distribution.

  • Rarity: Brands can be anywhere between 1-star and 6-star, with that largely affecting the quantities of stats and likelihood of better stat types of occurring (for instance +phys atk as primary stat is higher likelihood on a 6-star than 1-star)
  • Specialization: Each brand can be of the following types.  Shield, guard, speed, ward, divine, spell, sick, war, and life.  Those first four have two-set bonuses while the last five have three-set bonuses.  Be sure to have a concurrent 2-set and 3-set bonus going for each of your demons.
  • Stat Distribution: Depending on the slot (chest, head, legs, etc), you can find different types of stats.  Some brand slots like the leg slot only allow HP+ as the primary stat of a brand.  The best brands have their primary stat as a percentage of what you’d like.  For example, if you’re a melee hard-hitter, you’ll be looking for phys% increase to be the first stat listed on your brands.

What Kinds of Brands Should I Equip?

Every brand set-up is situational, so I’ll use my own demons as examples.  My Teal Ose 6-star has the following set-up.

As you can see, I have huge bonuses to physical attack and health, with a minor focus on speed, ailment resistances and magic defense.  Since Ose doesn’t take physical attacks, there’s absolutely no reason to have physical defense.  Go all in on magic defense and physical attack, I say.  His set bonuses boost both of those, so it’s important to be consistent.  

Next up is Sandalphon:

+31% health coupled with +55% magic defense makes my Sandy as beefy as they come.  Since he comes naturally with resist physical, it’s unimportant to invest too much in physical defense, as you’ll see I only have 3% extra. His set bonuses give him greater magical defense and spell damage for his Hamadyne and Zandyne.

My other two are Zhong Kui and Odin.  I have Zhong set up with a purist melee set-up coupled with resist physical to make him a harder target to take down.  For Odin, I made him more of a hybrid with equal parts physical attack and magical attack.  His Gungir is nice, but not all that useful with null physical lurking around every corner, so it’s important to buff his Lightning Storm and Bufula.

Flat Bonus vs. Percentage Bonus

You’ll notice very early on that you can find brands with % increases as well as ones with flat + increases.  If you’re looking to increase your health, you’ll have to look into how much you’ll gain from a flat increase versus percentage.  

Flat bonuses with high-level enhanced brands help out low-level not-yet-fully-evolved demons more than they do max-level demons.  A level one pixie with 6* brands with all flat increases will hit like a truck in your quests.  That same pixie with percentage increases will only make her slightly better.  Remember, every time you evolve your demon and increase its level cap by five, you’re increasing it by a level of magnitude.  The higher your demon can go, the better those percentages will work for you.  Think about the long-run.  At level 50, you’ll be wanting as many high-percentage-based brands as you can find.  Don’t ignore the tertiary stats either.

If You Want to Win: Master Your Brands

The end-game of Dx2 is PvP.  You won’t get very far in PvP without brands.  Think of it as running naked onto the battlefield.  Take the time to study up on your different demons and how you could be itemizing them better.  Remember, the top-most stat on each brand will be buffed to a higher extent while enhancing than any of the lower items.  So, while farming Brands of Sin, keep an eye out of brands that have the desired stat in the pole position.  You should have Sloth 7 and Deceit 7 on auto-farm in order to get 5-star brands.  Any of the higher Brands of Sin modes will require an entirely specialized team to conquer.  Also keep an eye out on the black market for that rare 6-star goody.  As always, have a swell day. I look forward to seeing you again.