Arknights Ambriel Guide

by Windgesang

So you want to use Ambriel, the only real snipers in this game. She’s a new operator, and you got her to pot 6 when you failed to roll Blaze, and now you’re in denial trying to compromise instead. Well, here’s all you need for her. I pushed the posting date ahead of the normal schedule (every Tuesday) because, again, Ambriel is new, and I feel like people (including myself) would misunderstand/misuse her and her range.

The worst thing I want to prevent is that, her “meme” will ruin her reputation to never be a normal operator in people’s eyes. Firewatch literally only have the words “drop” and “nukes” in one of her skill and boom, she is a meme operator, with no standing in this harsh world anymore despite both of her skills are decent and just function differently from normal sniper. She still has low DPS and needing quite a bit of investment though, so I can actually understand if that’s the arguments against her, but nooooo “dOn’T UsE FiReWatCh sHe’s jUSt a MeMe” ––– I just got a notification from my editor(s) that this is supposed to be a guide on Ambriel so uhhhhhh…………………look what’s that behind you?

Overview (“new” section)

Welcome to this week “underrated operator highlights”. It’s a special one today because Ambriel is one of my top favorite characters (not waifu though), so she gets a priority. Ambriel is a 4* version of Firewatch (I will try really hard to not mention her every 5 sentences from now). They share the same archetype of targeting lowest DEF first, and as a result, share most other things as well except for skills. Both have extremely high damage but are extremely careful when it comes to firing. Unlike Firewatch (dammit), she has no answer to a group of enemies, one of the biggest weakness of this archetype, but in exchange, get the best way to ensure safe positioning while still contributing to the team. In fact, everything Ambriel has all revolve about long(er) range.

Coincidentally, the last 2 posts have been about a sniper that has the capability to slow and/or stun in their kit.

Stats:

– Offensive stats:

For this archetype of sniper, high damage is a given. Also for this archetype, low attack speed is also a given. Ambriel has the 2nd highest attack in the game, until Poca comes to Global as well, where it will go down to 3rd. Her attack interval is really long, 2.7s per attack. For comparison, a normal ST AA sniper only need 1s per attack (without talent or anything else). So, 2nd – 3rd highest attack actually translated to really low DPS. Even worse, she has the same wind-up time as Firewatch, which is about 0.5s, and will always be required when she first made an attack, most noticeably after being idle. This wind-up time is fortunately already counted for the 2.7s interval (0.5s + 2.2s) but will still eat away a lot of time in any relatively long map since it’s rare to be able to attack all the time. I didn’t mention that back in other posts since it’s not important yet, but this wind-up time will be important for Ambriel later, when we get to her skill.

There’s a silver lining. Her potential 4 give her 6 extra attack speed. So that pushes her attack interval to 1/((106/2.7)/100) = 2.547 seconds per attack… well any boost help!

I expanded a bit more details and made my conclusion already back in Firewatch’s post, in the same section, so in the interest of not typing the whole thing again, you can read it again here.

Source for attack speed formula

– Defensive stats:

Ambriel’s DEF is on the lower end, and it’s actually 8 DEF lower than BP at max! Her HP is only a liiiiiil bit higher, but it’s still not good enough. She is definitely squishy (as expected from a sniper though, looking at you Executor). With that said, Ambriel could rarely be exposed to danger, based from her kit.

– Cost:

For this archetype, the cost to deploy is also high, and Ambriel is certainly costly to deploy, especially for a 4*. She has the same cost as E2 Schwarz, 20. Although, with Myrtle these days, maybe that wouldn’t be much of an issue?

Range:

Ambriel’s range is “huuuuuuge”- Trump (recycling joke jeez, but seriously it’s for real this time). And just like the last time this came up, I particularly like the 2 corner tiles. Those side range allows her to reach places usual snipers couldn’t reach. For example, in CC area 59, she can stay in the middle of the right tiles facing down to deal with casters, and still able to assist the left side. The ability to stay 2 tiles back and 2 tiles to the side while still contributing to the fight is pretty good for deployment flexibility. And, no spoilers, but Ambriel is exceptional at contributing to the fight from really far away.

Trait:

I can just copy everything from my Firewatch’s post, or you guys can go to that post and read it from there (viewbaiting again feelsbadman). I’ll just provide a summary here.

→ The trait is clearly defined: target lowest DEF enemy in the range first. However, it is unreliable at time because appearance can fool people. Another takeaway is that, whenever this archetype makes a shot, it will be the highest possible damage they can deal (not counting other operators’ debuffs or damage boost talent), because of this DEF priority.

Talent:

Ambriel’s talent is only available at E2 (lots of 4* only have access to their talent at E2, Myrtle being one example). Precise Strike: When attacking enemy that is outside Ambriel’s normal attack range, has a 25% chance to also stun it for 2 seconds. Potential 5 increases that chance to 28%. How can someone attack anything outside their range you may ask? That question will be answer later, when we get to her skills. Now the chance might not be so bad, that’s about one fourth of all the shot Ambriel would take! The problem is, her attack rate is so slow that this talent, as nice as it sounds, is fucking trash sorry I meant unreliable. It does help from time to time, but never even remotely consider relying on it. Unless you’re like me and is a gambling addict…wait what?

Skills:

Well, now we’re on the section that I’ve been foreplaying for a while. Ambriel’s skillset is the reason she is known. Both of her combat skills are known for providing long range support. But first…

RIIC skills:

Always available – Laziness: When this Operator is assigned to a Dormitory, self-morale recovered per hour -0.1, but restores +0.2 Morale per hour to all Operators assigned to that Dormitory (Only the strongest effect of this type takes place).

Yes, I just copy paste the whole thing, the laziness affected me owo. Anyway, the self-morale reduction isn’t that bad, it basically just halved the other effect of this skill on herself. The morale increase is pretty decent as well. I mentioned this in like 2 other posts already, but this means it’s good for when Ambriel go work somewhere (you’ll see below), and then return to the dorm to increase the morale recovery for everyone in the same room.

Available at E1 – Order distribution β: Increase Trading Post efficiency by 30%

This is a hefty amount of efficiency increase. But again, most people would only use 2 TP at most, so an excess of operator with good TP skill is nearly guaranteed. However, the option is there.

Hey wait a minute, isn’t this the exact same base skillset that Sora has? 1 skill that restore Morale for everyone in the dorm, and 1 skill that increase TP efficiency by 30%. Weird…

Anyway back on track, now we’ll go to a few great sections (I feel like I use this sentence in every post of this series except the first one).

First skill: Snaring Shell

Honestly, I much prefer the old gamepress’ translation “Obstruction Shot”. I think it also make the skill make sense intuitively, sort of. Basically, when active, first, this skill makes all of Ambriel’s attack to cause a slow debuff like a normal slow supporter for 0.6 seconds up to 1.2. Second, this skill expands her range by 1 tile (skill levels doesn’t affect this) toward the direction she is facing, so she can still only reach 2 tiles to her side, but 1 more tile forward. At level 7, this skill expands her range by 1 tile, and make all her attacks to inflict a 0.8s slow, which is exactly like a normal slow supporter, last for 30 seconds, and on a 29 seconds cooldown (22.3s with E2 Ptilopsis), with 10 initial SP as well.

If you know her default range, then an expansion of 1 tile make that even bigger. Remember her talent? It works against enemies in the new expanded area. The slow she can cause, while slow for the same amount as a normal slow supporter, is actually worse than a normal slow supporter, since she has terrible attack speed (2.7s vs 1.9s). In exchange though, she can slow from like 100000km away. The skill’s uptime is quite average, but at M3 it goes up to 36 seconds duration, on a 25s cd (19.23s with E2…), while also pushing the slow duration to 1.2s, which is 50% longer!

Although it’s 50% longer, that slow duration is still below 50% of Ambriel’s attack interval. At least by then it will barely surpass the slow uptime of a normal slow supporter (1.2/2.7 = 44.44% vs 0.8/1.9 = 42.1%), though it still can’t slow lock anything. But, despite that, the yuuuuge range should actually more than compensate using Ambriel to replace typical slow supporter. And don’t forget, again, any enemy being hit under the new expanded range (only the expanded area, not the original part) has a 25% or 28% chance to be stunned for 2 whole seconds. Plus, this skill provides no negatives effect when active unlike the next skill coming up soon.

A fun little fact is that, despite having huge range, this skill still can’t match the range expanded by Shirayuki’s S1 (anyone actually remember this skill). Shira’s version expanded for 6 extra tiles, whereas Ambriel’s version expanded for only 5 tiles. Although, Shira’s skill does nothing else but expanding range, so Ambriel’s doesn’t miss out much.

→ This skill gets overshadowed by her second skill a lot, but the benefits provided by this skill isn’t that bad. It has potential to have higher slow uptime than a normal slow supporter (though I wouldn’t recommend M3 this skill, as cheap as it is), has 25% chance to stun when attacking enemies under the new area of the range. Despite having no attack boost, the base ATK that Ambriel already have can somewhat offset a normal slow supporter that do have an ATK boost (like Earthspirit or Angelina). Ambriel’s range is also much more massive compare to a normal slow supporter, though she has no reach for enemies behind her (I think I said the same thing last post déjà vu, I have just been in this place before).

Second skill: Radar Sweep

Now we’ll see how Ambriel got her reputation. This skill, when active, first increase her attack massively (which combine with her high base attack means that it has pretty amazing number). However, second, it also increases her attack interval, by 0.9s, to an already long interval. Her new attack interval is 3.6s per attack, which is the third highest in the game right now (Manticore at 5.2s, and Skyfire 4.93s), but that’s not a good thing. Fortunately, her potential 4 increases her attack speed by 6, so now it’s 1/((106/3.6)/100) = 3.4s per attack, which increase to the 5th longest attack interval in the game (Manticore and Ethan at 3.5s). Why do they do this you may ask? Well, third, it expands her attack range to the entire map. Fourth, to “balance” it out again, the wind-up animation is also lengthened for any enemy that is outside the normal attack range. That wind up now increases from 0.5s to 1s (estimated, I’m not down to strain my eyes more than this to verify it). That is to say, from the time she begins to shoot someone to the time the shot is actually fired, it takes 1 second. This matter from time to time (like the waste damage I mentioned in Firewatch’s post), but it doesn’t affect the 3.6s interval. It just shifts that interval to 1s wind-up + 2.6s interval from shot fired to the next time the wind-up begins again. Which also means that, if the enemy she’s attacking is inside her default range, it returns to 0.5s + 3.1s. Attack speed boost should affect those things separately (don’t quote me on this), which results in the same as if that 3.6s is calculated as a whole (you know, multiplication of a sum/sum of multiplication and all that mathematical shit). With that said though, the wind up doesn’t affect final attack rate, since it just shifts the interval, but there’s still 25% reduction in attack rate (33% increase in attack interval). Her DPS will increase with this skill, but not by much due to that attack rate, despite a massive attack boost.

At level 7, the skill grants +60% ATK and global range, increases base atk interval to 3.6s, turns wind-up duration for enemies outside normal range to 1s, lasts 34 seconds, has a 25s cooldown (19.23s with…), and 10 initial SP. At the very maximum level (M3), the skill will bump that ATK boost to 100%, basically double, and duration to 40s, with everything else unchanged.

So now Ambriel’s talent makes more sense. In her first skill, the range increase is just 5 tiles. Now, it’s whatever her original range doesn’t cover in a map. However, as said already, never rely on the talent, it’s already unreliable as it is, and now with that attack rate decrease, it will barely work (I went as far as 2 consecutive stuns).

Despite I told you guys to not rely on her talent, you can still rely on her global range. It’s fricking amazing. She can stay in a lane and then go help someone else in a different lane. However, that doesn’t mean you can still let her face a wall to rely on the global range. I know for a fact that people (including me) thought about letting her face a wall like this. Please don’t do that, because the skill still has downtime, so during the 25s cooldown (19.23s…), she will be useless. Plus, her trait of targeting lowest DEF first is always there, so during the global sniping, she will never focus on any certain area at all, unless there’s only a few enemies out there that you know is low DEF and is spawning in a pattern, i.e. slugs, doggos…

Some important (maybe) ideas/info:

– The wind-up time of 1 second when attacking outside range target is quite long, so there’s a chance that they’ll actually move inside her range during that 1s. This is important because her talent calculates on-hit. Check this video out (3 whole samples tested!!!). Now because of that, I’ll assume that the same thing work in reverse (enemy moving inside her range after being targeted).

– Back to the slugs earlier, this skill can be use perfectly as a way to remove dangerous slugs from afar…or so people think. Since exploding spiders and icy exploding spiders explode when killed, Ambriel can be used to snipe them before they can even reach your operators. Since both spiders have 0 DEF, at least you can be sure Ambriel will always shoot them first, unless there’s also a different 0 DEF enemies around, then it returns to the default targeting system (I won’t get in details here). There are some slight issues with this idea though. First, her attack rate. By the time Ambriel makes the first shot, the spider/slug would already cover a certain distance in that 1 second, and, by the time she makes the second shot, it would be reach about nearly half of the map already, which should have a few ranged operators here and there, or even melee operators. She will need at least 2 shots to take them down: normal exploding slugs have 2460 HP and icy exploding slugs have 3250 HP. Second, these slugs rarely spawn solo (4-6, 4-7, and a couple of new maps in chap 6 like maybe 6-11). So, Ambriel can deal with one, but not the rest of them, since she has low attack rate. It’s true that she can stay safe taking the slugs out, even with just her normal range due to how large that is, so you can still attempt this technique. Although, I think I might recommend her first skill for this role because of the slow, though it’s still kinda meh, from what I already said earlier. Remember, the first skill doesn’t have the damage boost like the second one. I’d actually recommend Firewatch for this role, as she still need the same amount of hits and she can also stay safe from the explosion with her S1, or a large area slugs cleanup with her S2 it’s not bias I swear.

Edit – 21/7/2020: A quick video by Takagi will show you exactly that Ambriel alone isn’t enough to clean up the spiders https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kZ9uVIghWyU as they nearly reach their operators without further intervention

– You shouldn’t also drop her S2 off cooldown. Sometime, when enemies are pressuring your melee operators, you would want to alleviate that first, instead of globally snipe someone. If you already have enough DPS to do so without Ambriel’s help, her presence and her skill usage then wouldn’t really matter anymore. So assuming that’s not the case, you should save this skill for when it actually matters, or I guess it’s better to say use this skill when it doesn’t matter if you lose a portion of Ambriel’s DPS to the defender/guard area, OR if there’s only a few enemies left, and you really need that damage boost, OR if you know for sure who Ambriel is going to attack, because you’ve already gotten used to the enemies’ DEF stats (like slugs or doggos or basic enemies).

– As stated from a couple point earlier, do not drop Ambriel so that you can utilize the global usage to its fullest area (facing wall/empty area). Yes, place her so that she’s far away from the fight to be safe, but place her so that she would still be able to contribute without any of her skills. Because of how large her normal range is, you shouldn’t be lacking spaces for other, smaller range operators. Only when you completely lack space to stay in range of your melee operators, for one reason or another coughfuckingFrostNovacough, that Ambriel will start to shine, because any amount of DPS is better than none. With guardknights being the more dominant form of this game, maybe it’s not as great of an argument, but it definitely worth considers. Another point regarding this technique, and this is the most or the least significant point depends on how YOU are as a person. By dropping Ambriel far away from the battle, there could be a time where the pace of the map get so hectic that you may forget about her, since your attention is somewhere else. If you’re a diligent player, this point won’t apply. If you’re like me and get easily distracted, stop doing that. Again though, from last point, if your other operators is already enough to deal with most things on their own, then what you do with Ambriel doesn’t matter anymore.

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