They hide in shadows and use the art of ninpo, the advanced practice of which can create duplicates.
—In-Game Description, Etrian Odyssey III
The Ninja is a versatile agility-based class from Etrian Odyssey III: The Drowned City. It focuses on low-cost special abilities for enemy disruption, evasion, and attack. The Ninja has a special appearance in Etrian Mystery Dungeon.
It is the fastest class in the game. Ninja have some status affliction and support skills, but their main asset is speed and evasion. They will nearly always strike first and hit accurately. They have the lowest HP and VIT of any class in the game and can only wear Clothing armor. A Ninja's main weapon is a Knife. They can equip Katanas, but have no special skills for them.
Gameplay and Skill BreakdownEdit
Ninja can take on many different roles depending on what special abilities they choose. Their power is not obvious at first, since Ninja have very weak base offense and defense, but their skills turn their incredible speed into significant forces of enemy disruption, ally support, evasion, and attack.
Ninja are most naturally suited in a support role. Without any evasion skills, Ninja are greatly vulnerable to dying, and should generally stay in the back row, where their class skill Keburi No Sue (smokescreen) grants them a unique advantage. It removes the melee range penalty, and subtracts a maximum of 9 TP from all their skill costs, including those from subclasses. Bunshin, one the Ninja's most iconic skills, forms a complete duplicate of the caster in an empty party space - enabling faster action rates - at the cost of dividing the caster's HP and TP between the clones. The new clone gets its own chance to activate Nikudan, even if the original ran out of uses (same with Endure and Ascetic Rewards). Ninja can fill more empty party spaces with illusionary Kagerou shadows to distract the enemies' attention. Ninja have skills like Fukubari blowgun darts and Izuna that inflict powerful status ailments, and can spread them throughout the whole enemy group with Suikyou.
Ninja have extremely potent evasion capabilities. Almost every attack in the game can be dodged, allowing Ninja to face down even the strongest enemies alone or nullify major quantities of damage for the team. Maxing out Senpuku and Kumogakure adds up to about 110% dodge chance, and Karuwaza makes all of those dodges restore up 20 TP each. Their evasion can be further boosted by Wind Tactic and by afflicting enemies with Blind, but remember that Leg Bind and several status ailments will render Ninja unable to dodge anything.
Even though Knives are weak weapons, Ninja's Knife Skills boost damage slightly more than the skills for other weapon types. Katanas give Ninja much better autoattack damage, but Knives make Ninja more versatile offensively. Tagen Battou will deal the most damage a Ninja can possibly deliver, but it requires a specific skill choice and playstyle to be most effective. For every active Bunshin clone (not Kagerou shadow!), Tagen Battou's damage will double, so that every ally you take out of your party increases your ability to one-shot the enemy team. This strong attack is only practical with high-level evasion skills, since using Bunshin and Kumogakure so many times often leaves clones with 1 HP.
Ninja are generally unorthodox fighters and supporters, needing free space to deal damage or allies to use their low-cost skills with.
Since Keburi No Sue makes every subclass's skills more spammable and flexible, there is really no "wrong" subclass to give a Ninja. That said, there are a few that compliment a Ninja's natural capabilities particularly well.
Monk: Ninja synergize well with Monks, and their combination capitalizes on the strengths of both. Besides feeding TP off its own shadows and clones, each new clone gets its own use of both Nikudan and Ascetic Rewards. If used as the team's healer, definitely have Resurrect and decent evasion to survive as the last resort from defeat.
Shogun: The support and command skills are cheaper to use, but the main idea here is building Bloody Lance on one Shogun with Kaishaku, which kills Bunshin clones that activate Endure.
Gladiator: Berzerker Vow and Charge boost burst damage, making a Tagen Battou build significantly more powerful.
Hoplite: With this subclass, a Ninja with high evasion is better able to protect allies. Bodyguard, Overwatch, and Switch Stab are most helpful. Unknown which of Provoke and Otori has the better draw rate.
Zodiac: Keburi No Sue's utility has already been mentioned, but this subclass gets special recognition for its party-wide TP cost deletion potential. Ninja also deal decent damage with the Zodiac's spells.
Arbalist: The blinding from Smoke Grenade lets Ninja relax on their evasion skills. The Crossbow is also a great weapon that grants access to Snipe, which synergizes with Suikyou.
Buccaneer: Ninja have high AGI, so Pincushion has good damage potential. Swashbuckling helps Kubikiri activate more often.
As Subclass: Ninja also has very broad utility. The evasion is a great boon for most frontliners. If it isn't already used, Kagerou and Bunshin fill in the 6th party slot. For characters focused on status ailments, Suikyou is very potent, and Kubikiri applies to every autoattack.
Does not include any stat bonuses from skills, equipment, Books, or Retirement.
Skills are listed in the same order used in the game and do not necessarily unlock one after another. See the "Requires" column to see how to unlock a skill. If that cell has dashes in it, no other skill is needed to unlock it. Skills are normally maxed at level 10, but there are some exceptions where the level cap is 5 or even 1, shown in the "Extra" column.
- Class Skills are passive benefits unique to the primary class.
- Mastery Skills (exception) apparently Ninja have no Mastery Skills. Probably since everyone can already use Knives.
- Passive Skills automatically grant bonuses or effects whenever conditions are met.
- Knife Skills require an equipped Knife to use.
- Ninjutsu Skills represent ninja tricks, the one example is an attack.
- Counter Skills, after use, activate their effects after being struck by an enemy attack.
- Special Skills encompass any ability not covered by another category.
- Support Skills change the properties of allies or enemies in battle, but normally don't damage or heal.
- Escape Skills assist the party in escaping from battle.
|Keburi No Sue||Ninja skill that reduces TP used. No attack penalty from back row.||Class||-----|
|Knife Mastery||Prerequisite for knife skills that raises knife damage dealt.||Passive||-----|
|Senpuku||Increases the ninja's evasion.||Passive||-----|
|Karuwaza||Recover TP after successfully evading attacks.||Passive||Sarutobi Lv3|
|Kubikiri||Normal attacks may be fatal blows.||Passive||Suikyou Lv3|
|Nikudan||Once per battle, launch a fire attack upon being KO'ed.||Passive||Otori Lv3|
|Kagenui||Slash attack causing leg bind by stitching their shadow.||Knife||Knife Mastery Lv1|
|Izuna||Slash attack to one enemy. May cause petrification.||Knife Mastery Lv3|
|Takanoha||Slash damage to random enemies several times over.||Knife Mastery Lv5|
|Tagen Battou||Team up with your shadow for random slashes. Shadow will fade.||Knife Mastery Lv10|
|Fukubari||Piercing attack that may inflict sleep on three enemies.||Ninjutsu||-----|
|Suikyou||May spread a status ailment from one enemy to all other enemies.||Special||Fukubari Lv1|
|Makibishi||Counters attacks to the target row with a slash that may poison.||Counter||Fukubari Lv3|
|Kagerou||Create a shadow of yourself in an empty slot to draw attacks.||Special||-----||Max Lv5|
|Otori||Makes monsters target one ally for three turns.||Support||Kagerou Lv1|
|Bunshin||Use half your HP and TP to create a copy of yourself in the party.||Special||Kagerou Lv3||Max Lv1|
|Sarutobi||High probability to nullify enemy physical attacks for this turn.||Support||Senpuku Lv1||Max Lv5|
|Kumogakure||Sacrifice HP for a significant evasion boost for three turns.||Support||Senpuku Lv5|
|Tonsou Jutsu||Run from battle to the last used staircase or Submagnetic Pole.||Escape||-----|
- Ninja uniquely have all of their skill names retaining Japanese Romaji language. Some Shogun skills also have this trait.
- The brown-haired female Ninja greatly resembles one of the Ronin.
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