Well, I thought I should share some information I have gathered playing Shantotto since the JP version.Keep in mind this is not a guide, just my thoughts and findings so far. It's kind of hard to tell people how to play Shantotto, as she is a character that does not have a defined strategy for tackling every/most characters. In fact you could say she needs to switch things up for everyone she fights. A lot of what I learned, I couldn't have learned unless I experimented in the middle of a fight and took a chance, usually resulting in a near loss/loss. But you only really lose if you don't learn from your mistakes.
I guess I should state what my general thoughts are on her before any specifics. For sure, she is one of the more technical characters in the game. I think its almost a necessity to know who you are up against and what they are capable of doing to you (and vice-versa). I like to play primarily on the ground also if possible, jumping every time I need access to an air attack. She is very fast and this shouldn't be forgotten as she can run circles around most of the cast, both on the ground and in the air. Don't forget to use grind rails as well to create distance. Reverse Air Dash is great for creating vertical distance when used at the right angle, as Shantotto is not great at doing it on her own. Also, I think she is one of the casters that do well mixing it up in melee range and playing mind games, blocking and punishing. She's also good at frustrating opponents into attacking carelessly if you can play a good keep away game.
And don't neglect to use your staff attacks. especially on block. In fact, outside of the old "Bio breaking your opponent after they use an HP attack" trick and chaining 3 spells together after a successful block, it's her only reliable way of breaking the opponent and gaining brave. She crits for huge amounts of damage on her attacks in general, especially if you pepper in some atk+ for geared battles. My process in battles is usually to try and land a Bio as soon as humanly possible before being damaged. Mixing this with Bio critting and SnL ticking, it's only a matter of time before they break at base brave. If I do get broken though, its not quite so bad. At that point I just switch to a strategy of trying to land as many HP attacks on the opponent as possible.
Depending on who you are fighting you want to have different crit abilities on. For those who end the fight in one big HP hit, use Cat Nip. For those who use multiple HP attacks, use Back to the Wall. Or hell, use both and get 100% crit. Even when a break does not look possible, if you have Bio ticking and your HP attacks critting, the enemy will be dead before you know it.
One thing I found useful is Retribution can be used as a sort of "Jecht-Block", but just for magic. The fastest thing you can do after a dodge is an attack, and Shantotto gains a Magic block property for a couple seconds before she lets go of the staff. Not only that, the staff will also deflect any magic it hits and possibly the caster if you are close enough.
Another use I have found for retribution is it's great for smacking aggro players in the face that just won't stay out of yours. If you make them chase you around enough, more often than not they will run right into it. If they don't get hit, they will at least have to dodge away. Don't become to predictable with it though, it's one of the few attacks that stagger Shantotto when blocked.
An interesting bit of information I found is Shantotto is very good at utilizing the Recovery Attack skill. Using things like Water or Bind after being hit away actually work on some characters, or those that just aren't expecting it. Using this tactic you can get some very easy breaks/binds that are, for the most part, unpunishable if they whiff. So it comes down to a matter of, why not?
Another important thing to remember (and something I'm still working on) is if you chose to chain your magic, make sure it's going to hit. For example, using Ice and the Water-Thunder chain are best from above or below your opponent, as the trajectory will allow the spell to catch up to the opponent before they are able to dodge. Also, know when to chain and when to just let the HP attack go through.
I'm known for using the environment to my advantage, and Shantotto is great at it. Things like Thunder are also great when used while above your opponent, it has great vertical tracking and when used far enough above your opponent, can allow for a safe HP hit. Letting a Bio out in an open area and then spamming Aero behind a wall is one way to get one or the other to land. Retribution also goes through walls.
I guess that's it for now. I'll try and post more later when it comes to mind, and I'll update this post with any further information. If you have any questions, I will do my best to answer them. Hope this helps anyone looking to play as Shantotto.
jk. Good stuff Judah. Recovery Attack is clutch with Shantotto. If Shantotto gets hit by an HP attack with a little too much end lag, expect an easy break with Water.
So many people think Shantotto is gimp, but like Judah said, she is a technical character and requires different approaches as well, much like Jecht. You can't just spam Bind and call it a day because you WILL lose. Proper spacing, mind games and proper use of her attacks equals victory for the Taru-Taru.
Wow, Judah. Thanks for sharing, haha. Shantotto was one of my more-used characters in my short tenure with the Japanese version of the game, but she's been neglected in favor of several others following the Western releases. I pick her up every now and then for fun, but I'm always looking for ways to improve my game with her. She's a very difficult charcter to use, but arguably very rewarding nonetheless.
I have a question, though. While I've found a couple uses for it, Stun seems more trouble than it's worth in most cases within the context of Dissidia (it was so freaking overpowered in its game of origin, haha). Do you find yourself using it at all--even situationally--or is it just too much of a waste to bother equipping?
How do you go about deciding what sort of build/summon to use against a certain character? Is there a way you go about deciding, or do you just use the same build with minor tweaks?
Also, could you comment on my wall rush build topic? Any help would be appreciated. ^^
As far as Stun goes, you could use it near a banish trap to make your opponent fall in to make some distance. My opinion, though.
Originally Posted by Naga the Serpent
Interesting...I haven't thought about Recovery Attack + Bind/Water, I'm sure that will help me someday .
I also have a question, what would be better for Shantotto...counter attack ou sneak attack?
Counter for me, because it causes Critical status.
I somehow managed to equip everything. SnL, Riposte, Sneak/Counterattack and still have 40 CP left to spare. I'd probably pick Sneak Attack though, it seems to happen more for me.
Sneak Attack works wonders with Shantotto. While your opponent is under the influence of Bio, they can't face any direction other than yours without coming under the influence of Sneak Attack, and it works wonders for Retribution as well.
Glad to see feedback on the thread. I'll try and answer the questions to the best of my ability, and in the order in which they were received.
I myself have not used Stun quite as much as I should have. I've dabbled but nothing serious. From speculation and limited testing I can say this though: I think we need to start thinking about Stun more as a defensive technique. I have used it to stop attacks that would otherwise hit me. Also, remember it appears behind walls and floors, allowing you to keep distance if that's what is needed. Keep in mind, the fastest thing you can do after a dodge is an attack. I would have to test it against each specific character to see if the safety it provides warrants sacrificing another move for it. But from my knowledge I know it does not work well on Squall, but can stop the laggy HP attacks of Terra and Cloud. Also remeber it'll make any magic out at the time disapear if the enemy is hit.
Three offensive ways I could see to use Stun is to get Bio to land. Another is some people may get into the habit of dodging right after they get hit with stun. If you spam Bind you may be able to catch them in it. And the other is to cause opponents to fall into Banish Traps, cutting their brave by a percentage and also giving you the distance or element of surprise you may need at the time.
I actually just tried it against Wedge, and if you cancel the lag at the end of Stun with a dodge, you can spam Bind afterward and the time it takes them to teleport from the banish trap can give you enough time to get Bind/Water off. From the looks of it, it's inescapable, but it may be a tech chase kind of situation. For example, I think you can block a Bind after the teleport. If you dodge it looks like you get caught in the bind. If Shantotto casts Water, it would obviously stagger the block and you might be able to get an HP attack off, or possible chain magic. Keep in mind that the distance of the teleport can affect whether bind is able to land or not.
Big thanks to Wedge on this next one, It's in the realm of tech chases and I guess Jecht can do something similar. You use A Couple Attacks and go into chase half a second after the X appears. If you let the chase run out, the enemy will drop to the floor and bounce a bit. If you spam Bind after this, depending on the timing of the chase attack you can get a guaranteed Bind. It is blockable though, so mix it up with Water if they get wise to it.
Another tidbit: I think this one is a bit more well known (not sure) but it seems Shantotto can get a free bind off if they hit the enemy downward with a brave attack while in chase. They have to hit the ground, but the bounce can make it unescapable. Possibly blockable though.
As for what builds to use (and I'm a huge equipment enthusiast), I find it depends highly on what opponent you are fighting, possibly the stage. For example anyone that has a dangerous EX mode you obviously go with EX depletion. Then consider the character themselves, Cloud for example. He is known for his HP Wall Rush damage so you may want to consider an HP Wall rush defense booster if the stage has a lot of floor/wall. Another defense against his HP attacks would be Titan or Atomos summon. Along with Bio ticking it can make Cloud a predictable character. Shiva would work well, too.
I'll elaborate on builds in a future post (I gotta sleep, lol). That should give you a general idea about how to go about countering certain characters with equips and summons. Try to find what they are good at and prepare accordingly.
As for Counter or Sneak Attack... I use both. :P But if I had to choose then counter attack. The reason for this is some people may try to use attacks to null your HP attacks, which will proc Counter if they misuse them. Plus if they are trying to keep SnL from procing it will proc on Bio. Sneak attack is great for Bio as well, and as Demitel said, also great for Retribution. Riposte should also be considered, as blocking and punishing is great for Shantotto to utilize. Keep in mind however, you get a base percentage of crit (50% I think) on block anyway. So unless you are trying to land Bio+an HP hit, I would highly recommend not using Bind after a succesful block, but instead following up with a staff attack or HP attack to gain the bonus crit.
One more thing before I head off is once I get to EX mode, I either save it to guard against a nasty attack or save it for when I land bind. Once I see an HP attack connect I go right into EX mode to get the extra crit percentage. Chain 3 HP attacks together then EX Burst. After all is said and done, you keep whatever Brave you gained during the burst, which usually includes a break. This gives you a cushy brave cushion if the enemy isn't already dead, and also -Ga or Ancient level magic to boot.
I've got a lot more to share that I've found out and remembered since my first post, but I gotta wake up in four hours. Look forward to equipment builds and more techniques. 'Till next time~.
You have some really good tips in here, I look forward your next round .
Last edited by Jugil; 01-25-2010 at 03:26 PM.
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