Pirate101 Companion Spotlight
Popular, Beautiful, Graceful, Fierce… what more could you want from this Swashbuckling Sword Master?
Type: Specialist (Counter)
Weapon Power- 323
Sarah Steele, in my opinion, is one the best examples of a “specialist” companion.
Specialist (counter) companions, in general, tend excel in 1-on-1 combat with an epic build that allows them to score their most damage on the “off” turns (opponents move).
In Ms.Steele’s case, she is equipped to be any melee unit’s worst nightmare if underestimated.
- Shadowdance – Perhaps the glue of this entire build with an increased critical chance for an entire 10 rounds.
- Walk in Darkness – A 5 round hide that doubles damage when you attack, we’ll take it!
- Swashbuckler’s Stab – A guaranteed mega hit that halves the target’s strength and armor for 3 rounds.
- Super Strike – Guaranteed super hit!
- Repel Boarders – Bonus attack when an enemy approaches (Does this really hinder our dear Sarah???)
- Alert – Half damage taken from traps.
Sarah Steele is often frowned upon because of her starting epic, Repel Boarders. When she is hidden, any unit can simply approach her to trigger the talent, most of the time “wasting” the hide damage that could have been used more efficiently (such as with one of her guaranteed critical hits). Instead of sending her to join your scavengers and pet wranglers right away, how about we build on her pros?
- First Strike 3 – Not only do we stop hidden melee attackers being a threat, we can hit before them and possibly start a blade storm chain with the help of shadowdance.
- Blade Storm 2 – The true backbone of this build. With guaranteed critical hits and an improved critical chance from shadowdance-this talent can really shine.
- Riposte – Riposte is never a bad epic for a swashbuckler with their high base dodge. It’s increased damage compared to other epic talents makes it all the more worthwhile.
*1 extra talent* (Agile/Armored 1)
Accuracy is hands down the most important talent any companion can train. Every time you miss is a significant chunk of damage lost. You can’t deal damage if you can’t hit!
Tough 4 is another staple for most companions; the more health they have, the longer they can survive.
Rough 4 adds a total of 40 base damage. If you have a weapon power of 300, it will go up to 340! Every bit of damage counts, best to take all that you can get!
Dodgy 4 allows Sarah, already with a high dodge stat being a swashbuckler, to dodge that many more hits! Have to keep her around as long as we can after all, right?
Now I’m sure at this point you might be wondering “Hey Wolfy, why dodgy and not agile?”. To me, the answer is simple…
Dodging those 3-4 extra hits and living to fight another round will do you more good in the long run than tacking on a bit of damage per attack. (That’s what our offensive companions are for!)
As we know, Sarah Steele is exclusive to the swashbuckler class. When she is used with her partner in crime, Fan Flanders, exchanges on the battlefield can get rather “epic” (haha, get it?), especially with shadowdance in play.
Our furious fencer shines her true colors when approached by a vengeance strike 3 unit. In a 100% perfectscenario, Sarah will always defeat a full health Peter Quint after exchanging attacks.
Because of her own hide and that pesky Repel Boarders talent, Sarah can be used for an early game win/win situation. If you use her hide, shadowdance, and move in range of your opponent, they will be stuck with a tough decision;
A) Shield a valuable unit that will be the most efficient throughout the match (usually their pirate) while Sarah goes all out on another unit
B) Approach her to remove her hidden and likely get chained.
If you are remotely experienced with pvp then you’ll know that B is the better choice in this specific 1 vs 4 scenario.
If you hide her with black fog instead of her own hide, you can make her even more dangerous. With black fog, if you let your other companions attack first, your opponent is even worse off. They will have the freedom to go offensive or hold their defense up, though with proper spacing, your opponent can;
- use option B from above, while one unit wastes a turn because Sarah can hide again right after
- take out one of your threats, though Sarah will get to severely crush any companion she desires
- Shield themself, only to allow all of their units to be picked off one by one very soon afterwards. Good luck fighting a swashbuckler with an early advantage!
“What if there is a scent pet Wolfy?”
As soon a scent pet spawns it becomes threat number 1.
I hope that was bold enough to get my point across. Even if a scent pet were to show up and ruin your original plan, taking out a scent pet and leaving Sarah an open target is a trade you should ALWAYS want to take. Scent is a mainsteam pvp pet talent because swashbucklers are indeed as dangerous as they seem. The only good scent pet in my book is a dead one.
Overall, I strongly believe that Sarah Steele is the full package you could ask for in a companion. She can play many different roles in combat, be it pressuring opponents or serving as a wall for opposing units to get past. Our fierce friend is also amazing at taking care of summons with her “counter”-ing epic talent set.
Instead of looking at what they don’t have, all swashbucklers should take a moment to observe what they DO have in the friendship of a mighty comrade, Sarah Steele.
(Relentless isn’t everything!)