So you want to be Kirito! Or Archer! or Gundam Marute! Or… okay there’s way too many Japanese dual wielders in anime. That’s what Dual Blade Bouncer is all about though. So you look at the Bouncer skill tree, and what are all these terrible-looking skills like Aptitude Up 1?
It’s okay. This series is here to help. It’ll cover how to build, gear and play a Dual Blade Bouncer. This first part covers the Bouncer skill tree. Part 2 covers skill builds, including main and subclass choices. Part 3 talks about gearing and affixing and Part 4 covers how to use your Photon Arts and Techs to kill stuff.
First off, why play a Dual Blade (DB) Bouncer? Because you are the photon of your art. SATK is your build and PP is your blood. And you have farmed over a thousand Excubes …or something. Also, some actual strengths and weaknesses:
- Ease of Use: Attacks are straightforward. Main AoE attack is wide and fast-hitting, main boss killer works at range and doesn’t need much effort.
- Aerial Combat: Many ways to gain height and move around or stay in the air indefinitely
- Boss Killer: High single target DPS when Photon Blade Fever is active, especially with Tech Cancel.
- PP Management: Very easy PP management due to blade throws recovering PP and many PP recovery skills in the Bouncer tree
- Tech Access: The Bouncer class itself has access to techs, meaning free flow of heals and buffs.
- Low Damage Passives: Using other class’ weapons as a Bouncer will typically result in lower damage than other class combinations using the same weapon can do. Outside of Photon Blade Fever, Dual Blades themselves may not be able to match the damage of other classes either.
- Bursty: When Photon Fever is active, does great against bosses. Outside of Photon Blade Fever, damage can be low compared to other classes.
- Rigid: Dual Blade Photon Arts have very long animations, and tend to lock the player into moving in a certain direction. Defensive options like Photon Blade Escape and Starling Fall cause a lot of movement.
- Pricey: Expensive to optimize damage for, requiring a pair of Dual Blades for each element with Elemental Stance.
Dual Blades are, in essence, fairly versatile weapons that can handle both crowds and strong single targets, but don’t particularly shine until they use Photon Blade Fever for high damage on bosses.
The three core skills a DB Bouncer needs to take are Dual Blade Gear, Elemental Stance and Shifta Air Attack Boost. Of course, Elemental Stance implies five pairs of Dual Blades are needed to cover every element with an exclusive weakness.
To avoid crafting a rainbow set, run a Jet Boots build. A Break SD build with a 13★ is easily outdone by a simple rainbow set of crafted 7★ Red weapons.
Photon Blade Fever (PBF) and Photon Blade Fever Up
Highly Recommended. This is Dual Blade Bouncer’s main boss killer. Doubles Photon Blade Gear generation. When you press Shift, your Photon Blades will fully refill the Gear gauge so you can press Shift again.
Photon Blade Escape
Highly Recommended. This is Dual Blade Bouncer’s main form of defense. Pressing Shift and a direction key will grant invincible frames – pass through attacks while dodging! All five ranks will pay off. Of course, Pressing Shift also fires Photon Blades if Dual Blade Gear is available.
Rare Mastery Bouncer
Recommended (1pt only). The first point gives 30 ATK. Everything after that is pretty bad.
Deband PP Restorate
Recommended. Excellent for PP management. With Deband active, thrown Photon Blades and normal attacks will regenerate up to 3 more PP per hit. That means 18 more PP for Photon Blades at full Gear, or 39 PP for a full series of Twin Machinegun normal attacks.
Striking Up 1, Striking Up 2
Optional. Take these if there’s nothing left to take.
Optional. Many Dual Blade PAs cannot be canceled with a Step, and Photon Blade Escape overlaps with this in purpose. However, Bouncer does have points to spare and this skill works with cross class weapons. Stepping also allows better control over distance traveled, so this can be useful depending on playstyle.
Optional. Switch Strike allows Jet Boots kick damage to use SATK instead of TATK when toggled on. Jet Boots’ area of effect attacks are wider, so they can be useful to have on standby for beefy mobs or Anga. Consider these if you have lots of points to spare.
Break Stance, Break Stance Up, Break SD Bonus
Optional. Break Stance is good for boss-only Emergency Quests with many breakables, like Magatsu and Profound Darkness. This could change depending on the flavor of the month quest – Escafalz Mother does not have many breakables.
Break Stance works on breakable parts, including parts that can break further to cause a flinch or other effect. However, doesn’t work on already-broken parts.
Break SD Bonus applies some of Break Stance’s bonus to non-breakables, resulting in 15.75% more damage. Nice to have for mixed element quests.
Heal Share, Heal Bonus
Niche. Megiverse and even Resta tend to overheal as it is. Still, some players take both skills to share their incoming heals with other players as a form of support.
J Reversal PP Gain
Niche. Between Photon Blade throws, Elemental PP, Deband PP, the generous amounts of super armor on Photon Blade PAs and invincible frames on Photon Blade Dodge, a Bouncer shouldn’t be knocked down much. Even if they are, they shouldn’t be hurting for PP. One point is fine if there’s a stray point left over and nothing else to take.
Niche. Raises ATK value on crafted weapons and DEF value on crafted units. Formerly a recommended skill, 13★ weapons are common enough that this is no longer relevant.
When using crafted units, or uncrafted units with Timed Abilities installed, Craft Mastery will also apply to their base DEF values.
Critical Field, Stance Critical
Niche. Good for Fighter main to hit 100% critical chance. However, main class bonuses and a lack of up-to-date gear have made Fighter/Bouncer an outdated combination.
Elemental PP Restorate Field
Niche. Works only with normal attacks, and not Photon Blade throws, and activating this in the air will cause the user to drop to the ground. Take this if you really need more PP than Deband PP can give.
Niche. Effectively extends Field duration by 10 seconds. Excellent choice if using a Field skill, but useless otherwise.
Avoid. Crafted weapons are no longer relevant due to 13★s becoming very common while crafting recipes have not been updated in over two years.
Avoid. Scales with TATK and Boots will not be out often enough for this to matter.
Technique Up 1, Aptitude Up 1
Avoid. If getting Dex for crafted gear or making a hybrid with TATK, consider Bouncer Mag and Craft Mastery, where one point covers two stats in one go. These shouldn’t be necessary unless at some point in the future Sega releases a great pair of Dual Blades or set of units with extreme TATK or Dex requirements.
Other posts in this series:
- PSO2 Dual Blade Bouncer Guide Pt.1: Skills
- PSO2 Dual Blade Bouncer Guide Pt.2: Class Combos & Builds
- PSO2 Dual Blade Bouncer Guide Pt.3: Gear and Affixes
- PSO2 Dual Blade Bouncer Guide Pt.4: Gameplay
Last Updated January 15th, 2017