STARTING A BATTLE
Battle are split into two types - Player vs Environment (PvE) for story and event missions, and player vs Player (PvP) for Unranked and League battles. Both types of battles may be accessed from the world map.
For PvE missions players can select a mission from the world map. First select a mission zone, then select an icon in that zone to battle in. For regular missions a shield icon is displayed, and event locations use a crowned skull icon. If an icon has multiple missions a player can select which one he or she wants to do by swiping the mission select section. Once a mission is selected choose a Squad to battle with, and the battle(s) will begin.
For leagues and arena players can select the PvP zone from the world map (marked by the red twin swords icon), or the League option from the bottom bar on the world map screen. Once you are in the PvP screen select 'Play!' and choose a Squad to use in the battle. The game will automatically pair you with another player, or an AI if another player cannot be found at that time.
At the start of the battle each player begins with a pool of 2 Mana. At the start of each player's turn 2 Mana are added to his or her Mana pool, up to a maximum of 10. Summoning a unit 'locks' the Mana points used for its summon from your pool, preventing them from refilling at the start of each of your turns.
For example, a player with 2 Mana in their Mana pool summons LDF Sergeant, the two Mana used for its summon are locked. At the start of that player's next turn they will obtain 2 Mana for their pool. Their total mana pool is now 4, but they can only use 2 mana for a summon.
When a unit is defeated its Mana returns to that player's pool. That player may then use that Mana for any other unit they summon. Therefore, Mana management is a critical part of the game.
The objective of any battle is to reduce the opposing Captain's HP to from its starting total to 0. Catains take turns, deploying units in a their starting column, and maneuvering friendly units around or through enemy units to attack the opposing Captain. Once a Captain's HP is reduced to 0 the battle is over.
A player will always start a battle with a line-up of four units: the Vanguard unit (see Squad building for more information) and three random Units. A player will obtain 1 unit at the start of each turn, and his or her line-up can have up to a maximum of 6 Units. There is no option for a player to return a unit in his or her current line-up back to the squad pool, so the only way to add new units to a full line-up is to play units and make space.
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The battle field is turn based in a 3 x 7 grid system. For all battles, the field layout is as follows. On the left of the battle field is the Player's Captain, represented by whatever Avatar that player chose. The column in from of the player's Captain is that player's deployment zone. Then, five columns separate the two Captains. Finally in the right is the opposing Captain's deployment zone, followed by the opposing Captain.
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The left most and right most columns (in front of the Captains) can only be occupied by the respective Squad. These columns are where units can be deployed, so up to three units may be deployed in a single turn. Units may not enter the opposing Captain's deployment column, but if the unit's attack range enters the opposing starting column then the attack will hit the Captain.
During a Captain's turn he or she may perform up to five actions:
1. Move units from his or her line-up to the battle field. If a unit has a skill that activates automatically when it is deployed the game will do so. If the unit has a skill that targets a unit, row, or column (for example, a unit with Empower targets one other friendly unit) then the game will ask the player to select a unit where possible. If the player elects to cancel this action the unit is returned to the line-up. If the player selects a target, or if no target is available for the skill, then accepting the deployment will place the unit and activate the skill.
2. Move units between columns on the battle field. Friendly units may move between columns as much as a player chooses, and may move through friendly units. However. units may not move through walls or enemy units, and may not move between lanes if it has been immobilised by a skill or taunted by a Defender's attack.
3. Use a Captain's skill. To use a Captain's skill, tap the skill icon below the Captain's HP bar, and confirm. The skill will be used and enter into cool down.
4. View the stats and skills of any unit in the Captain's hand, or view the stats and skills of any unit on the battle field. To do so tap the unit once and the unit information will display at the top of the screen. To remove it tap once on any empty part of the screen or wait for it to hide again.
5. ATTACK! This action is the only action that must be completed by a player - once the attack order is given no further actions may be done by the Captain. Friendly Units will then move in a straight line towards the enemy Captain and can not move backwards. Units will only stop if it reaches the column before the opposing Captain's deployment zone, or to attack an enemy unit it its path and range. If the unit is defeated the friendly unit will continue its movement to its maximum range, otherwise it will stop moving. Once all units have moved and/or attacked, that Captain's turn comes to an end.
Finally, there is an 'Auto Mode' function available for use. Enabling this allows the AI to take over for a player's actions. Each turn whilst Auto mode is enabled the AI will deploy and move whatever units are possible, use the Captain's skill (if not on cooldown) and declare attacks automatically.
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN PvE AND PvP
In a PvE battle there is no time limit on a human Captain's turn. Players may take as long as they wish to formulate strategies, and deploy and move units. Enemy Captains have varying amounts of HP, ranging from 8 up to 20. Also, in a mission there may be multiple battles. Each battle provides its own experience and gold reward, but units from chests will only drop on the final battle of any mission (note that this wiki displays all exp and gold rewards from missions as the total provided from completing all stages of a mission).
In a PvP battle the stakes are different. Since both Captains are players both have 10 HP only. However, each player only has 60 seconds to make all their actions. If the Attack command is not used before this time runs out the game will enable Auto mode. Finally, if a battle is not won by a player in 20 turns the round is declared a draw.