GameplayHelp FAQs

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Here ya go: RS Rainstorm’s beginner video.

Welcome to Blue Archive! There’s a lot to learn, so please take your time and treat this like a library.

General Information[edit]

Gacha and sparks[edit]

Server differences[edit]

BA Servers
Server Nickname Timeline
Japan (JP) JP Launched Feb. 4th, 2021.
Korea (KR) Global Launched Nov. 8th, 2021.

About 6 months behind content-wise.

Will likely keep this steady gap.

North America (NA)
Global (Europe, EU)
Taiwan (TW)
Asia (AS)
China (CN) CN Launched August 3, 2023.
  • Japan (JP) is about 6 months ahead of Global. (Global is the name of Europe’s server, but we also use it for “all non-JP/CN servers”).
  • Global follows JP more or less; some banners are combined or swapped, but we have never skipped any.
  • You cannot pick your server unless you VPN. You can only add friends & join a club with players on your server.
  • To find your server: In-game homepage > Settings > Account > Version Info.
  • Acceleration: Global started about 9 months behind, and have caught up to ~6 months behind. It’s unlikely to change without drastic measures. Banner dates for the curious: JP banners vs Global.

Is Blue Archive F2P[edit]

Depends on your definition, but generally yes.

  • Be as casual as you like; you’ll eventually beat all missions by over-leveling & over-gearing it.
  • Many students are farmable (also makes rerolling not mandatory).
  • PvP is RNG and the reward differences are pretty small.
  • Raid rewards don’t differ much either. A max DPS borrow will carry every hardcore raid (and many extreme raids too).
  • F2P income is pretty good (1 spark every 2 months), but you’d have to whale or be insanely lucky to collect all the gacha-only students.
  • Luckily, most students are permanent, and they’re pretty good about reruns.

Game Terminology[edit]


  • In general: Hibiki, Iori, Aru > Hina, Haruna > else. All are farmable except Shun.
  • The tutorial is limited to the seventeen 3★s from launch.
The restricted tutorial pool
  • If unhappy, reset by: Settings > Account > Reset Account. “Close account” wipes it completely and removes any linked email.
  • Students with the “unique” label are limited; they don’t join the general pool.

Logging into a linked account

  • Login to your linked account on the title screen.
  • If stuck in guest mode: finish the tutorial. Link it to the account you want to access. Say Yes to “This is already linked, login instead?”

The Meta[edit]

Unit ratings & dates[edit]

Why a universal tier list can’t exist
Why a universal tier list can’t exist

Who’s must pull?

  • Midokuni’s Banner Summary. The closest thing is “enabler” and festival students here. Check “collab” and “limited” if you’re a collector.

How good is this unit?

When will they arrive?

Additional advice:

Limited & welfare[edit]

Check a student’s type on


  • Students who join the general pool. You can pull them anytime.


  • Have the unique or limited tag.
  • They don’t join the general pool; you can only summon them when their banners are up.
  • You can’t summon them from the expert shop!

Limited festival:

  • Wakamo, S. Hoshino, Mika, S. Hanako, D. Hina, etc.
  • They can be pulled in any festival, but you can only spark them if their banner is up.
Example of filtering for limiteds


  • Free students from events.
  • You can summon them during that event, or after their event is archived.
  • When archived, you can buy elephs via expert permit shop.

Bond gear:


  • Students whose elephs can be farmed. Commonly from (but not limited to) hard quests, events, and shops.
  • See Midokuni’s website or his excel (“farmable summary” tab).

Spark plans[edit]

Pyro planner[edit]

Pyro planner example

F2P Income[edit]

New player pyro
  • See DashingFlame’s pyro report for each month’s breakdown.
  • New players are showered in pyro. See Kelfran’s One-Time Pyro Rewards for details.
  • For help with Guide missions:
    • Select your guide mission and day.
    • If the task has a timer, it’s total time spent in battle (each fight contributes). No timer means you can sweep it.
    • If it asks for lessons with certain girls, you have to own the student to receive credit. Alternate characters will work (e.g. S. Azusa for Trinity).

Beginner guides[edit]

How to play & team comps[edit]

1. Quick guides:

Damage modifiers important for DPS

Full tutorials:

2. Boost Serina to 2★. It’s cheap and improves her free heals & EX.

  • Save the rest of your eligma! You don’t need +5★ DPS until insane raids.
Good tank examples for the early game (except Natsu)

3. Use tanks with high evasion like Tsubaki and Yuuka. They use SMG weapons (exception: Natsu uses her EX to sustain).

Other tips:

  • Tanks who rely on defense (non-SMG) need their Tier 4 bag tank properly.
  • After T4: Tsubaki is even stronger, Yuuka struggles a bit compared to others (still perfectly capable). She gets super strong with T1 bond gear.
  • S. Hoshino is a tanky support, not a true tank. Wait until she can solo the frontlines (usually with a T4 bag).
  • If brawlers are too annoying to keep alive, use Hanae, an aoe healer, or skip them. E.g. Izuna, S. Izuna, Michiru, Sumire, Tsurugi.
  • Purchase one T4 blueprint set from the expert permit shop to make a T4 bag for your main tank. It’s a big survivability boost.
  • Since resources are scarce (especially level 70+), only invest in who you need to clear content. You can expand your roster later when you’re richer.
  • Ignore A stages for now (e.g. 3-A). They’re harder and you don’t need them for cafe upgrades.

Gameplay tips[edit]

  • Gameplay tactics demo.
  • Don’t use auto team fill, auto fight, or auto skip battle (unless it’s safe). The AI is as dumb as rocks. Skip battles acts as if you played on auto fight.
  • Gear priority guide. Level up, gear up. Shotgun tanks will really struggle before T4 bags.
  • Balance your AOE between teams, check your EX totals aren’t too high. Double check your teams with Midokuni’s Team Building tab.
  • Stages become difficult about 15 to 20+ levels below enemies due to the level penalty.
  • Prioritize elite enemies (skull icons) or dangerous ones, like backline nukers.
Example of a boss, elite mobs, and regular mobs
  • Prep the last wave: cycle through cheap EX skills to your DPS and pool your energy to max/near max.
  • Nuke the boss immediately with 2+ DPS EX skills. Place overlapping aoe to multi-hit enemies (e.g. 3 with Hibiki, 2 with Mutsuki).
  • Tsubaki taunt for something dangerous, like Iori jumping back to EX, or the giant yellow robot charging up. This forces them to cancel and auto attack instead.

Level penalty[edit]

  • The higher level unit gets a damage reduction buff against the attacker. It’s 2% damage reduction per level, capped at 60%. Your units’ and the enemies’ stats do not change. Basically, your student does less damage when they are below an enemy’s level, and vice versa.
  • The recommended level and your account level doesn’t matter. The latter just limits your characters’ max lvl.
Level Penalty Examples
Student Enemy Difference Penalty
Lvl 30 Lvl 70 40 lvls under Enemy gets 60% damage reduction (max penalty).
Lvl 60 70 10 lvls under Enemy gets 20% damage reduction.
Lvl 70 70 0 No penalty.
Lvl 83 70 13 lvls above Your student gets 26% damage reduction.
  • This applies to every student vs. every enemy in all game modes (including PvP).
  • Enemies in mission chapters 13-15, bounties, commissions, and some events are higher than the recommended (check with
  • Story 3-3-24 has level 57 enemies, so it’s difficult until you’re level 40+ unless you have Iroha.
    • Video guide by Raishin.
    • Video guide by Myon. You don’t need Shiroko specifically! Just use a red dps.
    • 6WsAuhF.jpg

Maps & challenges[edit]

  • For maps: JP Wikiru and (maps tab).
  • YouTube is your best friend. Some examples:
  • “Beat a stage in X seconds” is total battle time (time on the map doesn’t matter). Skip battle acts as if you played on auto fight. You may need to use team 2 to lure an enemy away and forfeit, so team 1 can head to the boss.
  • You can complete three star objectives one at a time for every stage in the game.

Leveling & AP[edit]

Spending AP[edit]

Repositioning to AOE better is one comms strategy

Leveling faster[edit]

  • You gain 1:1 account experience for APAP spent.
    • Your AP does not regen when capped; don’t let it for long periods of time.
  • If you care about optimizing, refresh 3x daily until you’re max level (buy AP 3 times a day via pyro). Applies to F2P too; it’s easily affordable with 12k pyro a month and speeds progression by a lot.
  • You can use PvP coins for AP, but events usually offer rare items, so hoard enough for those.
  • Max your cafe comfort when possible for more free AP per hour. Cafe upgrades are in every third chapter (3-5, 6-5, 9-5, etc.)

Level estimates[edit]

Gear, skills, Specials, eligma[edit]


Gear priority guide.

  • Gear in chapters & stages is consistent. When new gear comes out, farm higher equivalent stages.


  • Farm the highest tier and go down (gear can drop itself & parts used to make it. Example). Left-most blueprint has a higher rate.
  • Rates for certain gear were buffed (lower tiers). Max level players can buy the unbuffed tiers, and farm the buffed ones.
  • T4 bags is a huge survivability boost for tanks; newer players can grab them via expert permit shop.
  • Use Justin’s planner to see the most optimal sweeps for gear farming.
  • Prioritize important students for upcoming raids or difficult content.


See the Bricc Skill guide. It’s also imported to Midokuni’s site, Bricc Archive tab.

Who to skill up:

  • Generally save for raids. Mats are sparse, and skills are helpful but not necessary for missions. EX3 is fine on your main aoe DPS if you want to zoom.
  • Can boost healers, but EX3 at most early on (if you even need that).
  • Tanks don’t have much stats to scale with until end-game. Many don’t even need skill levels; gear and student levels can be enough.

Other tips:

  • Stick to the breakpoints; EX: 3, 5. Other skills: 4, 7, 10. These give the most “bang for your buck.”
  • Be very picky with popular schools Gehenna, Millennium, and Trinity.
  • You can use this wiki, Justin’s planner, or to figure out total resources needed for leveling.
  • For
    • Go to a student > Skills > Materials > move the slider.
    • It also has a quick overview of who uses what. Example.


How to view the stats your Specials give

Stat transfer

  • Specials give 10% ATK/HP and 5% DEF/HEALING to strikers, so you’ll want to level & gear everyone eventually for difficult raids.
    • Click “Unit Info” on the team page to see the stats given.
    • Some Specials are great stat sticks (units with very high attack). E.g. Karin, Saki, UE30 NY Fuuka (she helped Mika perform a lot more consistently in torment raids).
Why you don’t need to invest in certain Specials

Gear and levels

  • If a Special needs attack/healing stats to do their job properly, then they need levels and gear. If not, you can skip them until difficult raids.
    • DPS Specials need levels and slot 1 & 3 gear. E.g. Karin, Hibiki, Iroha, SHifumi. For slot 3 gear, prioritize your Striker DPS over your Specials (unless they are the main carry like Iroha in Peroro raid).
    • Healer & shielding Specials need levels and slot 3 gear. E.g. Serina, Hanae, Ako, S. Shizuko, Mari.
    • Specials who just buff or can do their job without stats, do not need levels and gear. E.g. Kotama, Himari, Airi, Yoshimi, Shimiko (doesn’t need investment until torment Shirokuro).
  • Some Specials have unique situations. Examples:
    • Shizuko needs a minimum HP of X to reflect both balls on Shirokuro. So you’d hit that threshold via mix of stars, levels, gear, and EX lvls.
    • Mari (and Aris) need to hit a certain shield & HP minimum for insane, so Aris will survive Peroro’s laser transition.


  • Causew’s guide to spending eligma.
  • Elephs = specific character shards. Eligma = currency used to buy elephs.
  • The eligma cost increases every 20 eleph bought, up to 5 cost. This never resets back to 1 cost.
  • You can use Justin’s resource planner to calculate eligma costs or get estimates for hard mode farming.
  • Be crazy picky with your eligma.
    • It costs about 2 sparks to boost one DPS for insane/torment (UE40). That’s 4 months of pyro saving for F2P.
    • Don’t forget your supports who may need 5* for insane/torment.


How to raid[edit]

Raid battle screen for Chesed

Boss guides:

Other tips:

Example of how easily a good borrow can carry you through hardcore raids
  • Go for the safe strategies, not the maldy wanpan comps (hair-pulling 1 team speed runs).
  • For example: 2 team Kaiten had an aoe team for phase 1, and a single target & shield breaking team for phase 2. If you’re strong enough, you can brute force it and crit mald with one team. Otherwise, do it the safe way. See Causew’s General Raid guide for more info.
  • Wanpans are not even the fastest option sometimes. Depends on the boss, terrain, and available units.

Extreme & Insane[edit]

  • Extreme is tuned to level 70, 5★ DPS, no UE. Very generally, you want:
    • Level 70, UE30 DPS with 5777 skills and T6 gear. Depending on your supports, you can even get away with an all 3★ team + a max hyper carry borrow.
    • 3★ supports work if they don’t need higher stats to do their job.
  • For insane (very generally):
    • Level 80, UE40+ for DPS with 5777 and some max skills.
    • Most supports can stay 3★, but others may need more (e.g. healers in Hiero to one-shot the lantern or heal it in a timely fashion).
    • See Midokuni’s guide for insane investments (multiple tabs).
  • Boosting is expensive, so only do it until the raid is comfy enough, then save for the next few raids.
  • Causew’s character & team statistics for torment.
  • Midokuni’s raid stats.

Clubs & friends[edit]

$$$ Why vets and clubs will always welcome newbies
  • Clubs & friends are very important. You can borrow units for raids, JFD, conquest mode, and certain parts of story.
  • Borrows save you from sparking & maxing 1 unit per raid/JFD. Sometimes it’s ideal to use two of that character per ticket.
  • A club also gives 10 AP a day, which helps you level faster.
  • You can use the friends & club recruitment channels in discord. You can also filter for high level players in-game. Click the “i“ to see who they’re lending for raids/JFD. How to do it.
  • Clubs and friends want newer players for more credits from borrowing.
  • Make sure you set 9 units in your borrow slots. You earn a lot of credits this way, even with zero borrows. Set them via “Assistant Settings” in your club, or Settings > Friends > Assistant Settings. Click “Reform” to collect credits.

Finding your server[edit]

  • From in-game: Settings > Account > Version Info.
  • You can only add friends and join clubs on the same server.

UE, scrimmage, bond gear, affection[edit]

Unique Equipment (UE)[edit]

Aru’s unique weapon
  • UE is short for Unique equipment.
  • It’s a special weapon 5★ students can equip. The # stands for the weapon level (e.g. UE40 = level 40 weapon).
Unique Equipment
Notation Elephs Required Weapon Level
1★ UE Student must be a 5★ Can go up to UE30
2★ UE 120 elephs Can go up to UE40
3★ UE 180 elephs Can go up to UE50
4★ UE and higher Doesn’t exist yet ~
  • Save your eligma. You don’t need 5★ DPS until extreme/insane raids.
  • You level UE by doing scrimmage and buying pins from the expert shop.


Rainstorm’s video for tackling scrimmage
  • Scrimmage drops UE materials. Most buy UE pins from the expert shop and farm 2x drops as needed.
  • Guides:
  • Scrimmage D suggestions.
  • Scrimmage D: UE30 is required. More is comfier. Aru is even stronger with her T2 bond gear. I cleared it with UE50 Maki/Wakamo, UE40 Haruna/Shun/Iori/Aru, and UE30 Hina. Generally 5777 skills and T766 gear.

Bond gear[edit]

Aru’s treasured wallet
  • Bond gear is 4th slot gear unique to certain characters. You can see it on unique gear list.
Bond Gear Releases
Characters (newest to oldest) Available Released on
M. Aris No M. Momoi & M. Midori
Yoshimi, Kaho, Kaede, Miyu No B. Kazusa & B. Yoshimi
Nonomi, C. Hanae, Misaki No Dress Hina
Sumire, Miyako, Hanako, S. Izumi Yes Railgun collab: Mikoto & Misaki.
Wakamo, Mimori, S. Chise, C. Saya, Serika. Yes S. Hanako
Bond requirements reduced by 5 levels (3 months early).
Izumi, Eimi, S. Hina, S. Hifumi Yes B. Toki & M. Aris
Neru, Shiroko, Junko, Suzumi Yes Mika
Utaha, Hinata, O. Cherino Yes B. Akane (early)
Aru, Tsurugi, Shun (young), B. Asuna, Yuuka, Hare Yes S. Hoshino
  • For estimated dates, see Midokuni’s Banner Summary or the “Banner Summary” tab.
  • Generally Aru and Yuuka > others, but whoever you use and like really. Just equipping it is basically free and a buff.
  • The T2 bond gear is a bit of a grind, but gift selectors (via fusion crystals from JFD) & the crafting revamp helps with that.

Affection & Momo talk rewards[edit]

Bond calculator example
Bond calculator example

Shops, crafting, lessons[edit]


JFD shop
Bounty shop predictions
  • Shops have a refresh timer at the bottom. Items stay the same, but purchase counts reset (except the Bounty shop that rotates goods).
  • It’s better to buy things you need than hoard way too much and be limited on shop resets.
  • You cannot summon units from the expert shop!


Stop at the 1st node if you lack thousands of fodder. It’s very expensive & generally only gifts are worth it past here.
Nodes If Gift Hunting If Not Gift Hunting
Node 1-2 Furniture (Until Max Comfort) > Gift > Shiny > Radiant > Else Furniture (Until Max Comfort) > Radiant > Shiny > Gift > Else
Node 3 Gift > Radiant > Shiny > Elephs > Secret Tech Note
(You shouldn't be here if you're new enough to still need Comfort)
Elephs = Secret Tech Note > Radiant > Gift > Shiny
(You shouldn't be here if you're new enough to still need Comfort)


  • Don’t go past the first node (big circle) if you’re unsure what’s safe to fodder. The last node is very expensive, and generally only gifts there are worth it.
  • Small crafting nodes are random! Pick whichever you want most.
  • Crafting drop tables and rates:
  • You can skip crafting animations by clicking the screen each time.
  • Don’t use Quick Craft if you care about the results.


Requirements for the daily maximum tickets
  • Overview: schedule.
  • Leveling the schools more evenly unlocks the daily max tickets faster. Click the ticket button on the lessons homepage to see the requirements.
  • Get whatever you need the most. If you can’t decide, more Gehenna, Millennium (and Trinity) is always good.
  • Generally purple mats > gold > blue, since the first two are harder to farm, you’ll have plenty of grays mats, and you won’t have to worry about skill levels until extreme raids (since a max DPS borrow can carry you in all hardcore raids).
  • Lesson Drop Rates “schedule tab”.

PvP, Joint Firing Drill[edit]


Why you don’t need to sweat PvP
Why you don’t need to sweat PvP
  • PvP is very RNG and expensive to stay at the top. Just do what you can and hoard coins for AP refreshing on good events.
  • Your daily PvP reward is based on your current rank. Climb ranks before you claim. The reward reset time is on the PvP page in-game.
  • Battles are determined once you start. Skipping/watching has no impact.

JP PvP Seasons
Season Terrain Banner Approx. Duration
1 Urban Hoshino & Shiroko 7 months
2 Outdoors Shun (small) 4 months
3 Indoors O. Nodoka (Hot Spring) 9 months
4 Urban S. Hina & S. Iori 7 months
5 Outdoors Izuna & Mimori 7 months
6 Indoors Railgun collab 6 months
7 Urban B. Kazusa & B. Yoshimi Ongoing (May 8th)

Joint Firing Drill (JFD)[edit]

JFD gimmick example
  • How JFD works. It’s a bit like raid, but you need 3 teams.
  • The type of exercise, the gimmicks, and the enemies’ armor will heavily influence your team comps. Go to your respective discord #joint-firing-drill channel for help or search YouTube (e.g. “blue archive joint season #”). Check which season we’re on in
  • Only stages 3 and 4 have additional gimmicks. Stage 1 and 2 are regular enemies; just shoot them down. If there’s a scarecrow, heal it first to greatly debuff enemies.
  • Borrows help immensely here, occasionally letting new players cheese stage 4.
  • See the shops section for what to buy from JFD.

Game stats, buffs/debuffs, bricking[edit]

Game stats[edit]

  • ItJustWorks stats doc. What game stats do, how to calculate them.
  • You can also use the damage/healing calculator in via magnifying glass icon or Calculations button on any character page.

Buff & debuff stacking[edit]

For example:

  • S. Ayane and Hanae have the same crit damage sub. If S. Ayane with sub level 10 is on the left, and Hanae with sub level 4 is on the right, Hanae’s smaller buff overwrites it since she’s on the right slot.
  • B. Akane and another attack sub example.

Cost recovery demos:

Debuff list by VGrunner


  • Bricking is a meme that you’ve done terrible, irreversible things and permanently ruined your account. It comes from an old Princess Connect issue (investing too much made your units take less damage, so they gained less energy for ultimates).
  • For a majority of players, you can’t really brick yourself.
  • A (not) example with S. Hoshino.
  • Another (not) example:
    • Kuro’s attack speed affects when she summons carts. If you leveled Airi’s EX/Basic skills too far, it lowers to the point where she summons less carts. These are used to hit herself for extra damage with Airi’s debuff.
    • It only affects those who are barely clearing ShiroKuro insane and above. If you’re already far into bodythrowing, missing an extra 600k can be quite significant.
    • This is actually more of a trade off; you take less attacks from the boss. If you put dps students in the Airi team, they will live longer, which means they deal more damage.
  • More game terminology in Midokuni’s “Glossary”.

Festivals, free pulls, paid items[edit]

Festivals and 100 free pulls[edit]

  • Festival (or Fes / Fest) banners are JP’s anniversary banners with double the 3★ rate, from 3% to 6%. We also get 100 free pulls right before or after.
Rates for Festival banners
Banner Students Rates
D. Hina (new)
D. Hina. Can be sparked. 0.7%
Wakamo 0.225%
S. Hoshino 0.225%
Mika 0.225%
S. Hanako 0.225%
Permanent 3★s The rest of the 6%
S. Hoshino (rerun)
S. Hoshino. Can be sparked. 0.7%
Wakamo 0.225%
Mika 0.225%
S. Hanako 0.225%
D. Hina 0.225%
Permanent 3★s The rest of the 6%
  • Next festival: 100 free pulls on limited Dress Ako & Makoto. Then the Festival girls: Dress Hina & S. Hoshino rerun.
Don’t chase. Wait for a rerun/spook.
  • Banners swap & the free pulls expire. You can’t save them for anyone else.
  • Free pulls accumulate; you can do all 100 on the last day without logging in.
  • All festival girls can drop in every festival at a lower rate. They have also been getting reruns.
  • See Midokuni’s Banner Summary for estimated dates (search for “fes”).

Worth buying[edit]


  • The monthly subscriptions stack with each other. Refreshing them early extends their duration (same for the AP pack).
  • The generic guaranteed 3★ tickets usually include the entire permanent pool. Check via Rate Info button on its gacha page.
  • For info on new shop items, see the latest shop update.

Start Dash ticket[edit]

  • The pool is much smaller and offers a lot of great units. It also gives rate-up for dupes (100 elephs instead of 30).
  • Click the Rate Info button on its gacha page for details.
  • Check who’s farmable on or Midokuni’s Farmable Summary.
  • For character info: Student Insights. Check tabs: “Banner”, “Farmable” and “Other > Stokkie’s Raid Ratings”.

3★ selector[edit]

  • BA rarely sells 3★ selector tickets. See this post for details.
  • The best 2 units are easily Ako and Himari. After that, it depends on you. Check the banner summary if the unit you want will have a rerun.
  • D. Hina’s festival sells a school selector instead.
  • For info on new shop items, see the latest shop update.




  1. Blue Archive Official(GL) Discord, Midokuni#0001,
  2. Blue Archive Official(GL) Discord, Kelfran#0178,