Blue Archive – Beginner’s Guide
Nexon has just published the popular Bishojo RPG title Blue Archive globally for Android and iOS. Blue Archive is set out to be one of the most popular RPG games for this year with it topping the Google Play Store and Apple App Store rankings in just 2 days! The title features a beautiful story and scenery boosted by its thematic artwork and sounds. The game summarizes the journey of a mysterious man titled “Sensei” who has lost his memories and is back to the past for us to experience the journey along with him. The game features beautiful 3D Chibi sprites of its characters, called “Students” canonically in Blue Archive.
Blue Archive is an RPG that adds its uniqueness and leaves a positive and hopeful impact on players who have tried it. The gameplay itself is a top-down shooting RPG where players form a team of 6 Students – 4 Strikers and 2 Specials. The Strikers are the students that engage actively in battle while the Special students provide support from the backline. Players cannot control the movement of characters but can tap target their unique abilities and skills through their skill cards shown in the bottom of the battle screen. The gameplay itself might not be engaging enough for many hardcore gacha players who are looking for more on the Active side of gameplay. Yet, Blue Archive has this magical feel about it like the breathtaking graphics, unique storyline, top of the notch sound quality, and smooth UI which can’t let you stop playing it.
Blue Archive is a gacha/hero collector game that requires all its players to summon for the characters through their summoning banners using the gacha currency called “Pyroxenes” in Blue Archive. The gacha banners have one similar quality, i.e, the rarities of the Students and the rates of summoning them. The rates for different rarities of Students are as follows:
- 3-Star Students – 2.5% for all Students
- 2-Star Students – 18.5% for all Students
- 1-Star Students – 79% for all Students
When players do a 10 pull or summons, they are guaranteed to obtain at least 1 two-star student in the summons. A pity exists in Blue Archive at 200 summons on every banner. Some Students might be available at a higher rate than other students in a Rate-Up summoning banner.
Blue Archive features tons of content including but not limited to Raids, Main Story, Resource Stages, Commission Stages, Tactical Combat, and much more. The game is still very fresh being 2 days old and has been released with tons of content for both PvE and PvP players. We will explain more about the various game modes in-depth later in this guide.
We are here to tell you about everything there is to know in the beginner’s guide for Blue Archive.
Understanding the Currencies and UI
Blue Archive is a gacha hero collector game where the user has to summon through various banners to get their favorite heroes. Heroes are divided into different rarities – 3-Star 2-Star, and 1-Star students. These are the base ratings; however, players can further take any character to a maximum of 5-Stars by feeding their Elephs of that student. Elephs are fragments for each student that can be earned through summoning their duplicates or through events and Eligma Shop. Players can increase their student’s mystic ratings by using the student shards for the particular student. Increasing the star level or called Mystic in Blue Archive is important as it makes them much stronger by increasing their stats and unlocking their different skills.
Coming to currencies, we have 3 main currencies used in Blue Archive: –
- Credit Points
Credit Points is the currency that is primary and can be obtained in abundance. This is used for upgrading gear, upgrading heroes’ abilities and skills, increasing the rarity of heroes, buying things in the market, leveling up students, etc. Although the supply is more, the demand is high as well especially when your students start getting stronger. Hence, we recommend focusing on only a set number of students and not powering up all at the same time as it could put a serious load on your Credit Points and you might face scarcity issues.
The next currency is AP which is very important. AP is the main currency used to play the game in most of the PvE modes. Consider this AP as stamina/energy in other games of similar types. Players can choose to skip the gameplay using Sweep functionality which is unlimited and skipping the gameplay will still cost you the same amount of stamina. It will save time, though. This is why we always recommend using AP very wisely and getting all the AP you can from doing your daily tasks, buying drinks from the Tactical Shop, and the events in general. AP will be one of the key resources for all players to progress fast in less amount of time. There is little to no farming as the game allows players to sweep all stages unlimitedly, hence, the focus should be on resource acquisition.
Pyroxenes are the premium currency in Blue Archive and are used for summoning, buying daily packs, refreshing AP, etc. Players need to judiciously use this currency as it is will be easy to gain at first when players start playing but will get scarce later when players have finished most of the content like the main story. Players can earn this currency through various events, Tactical combat, achievements, tasks, and by playing the story missions. We recommend saving these Pyroxenes for limited time summoning banners or for future top tier characters that will be releasing. For the time being, players can spend some in the beginning on the ongoing rate up banners for Shiroko and Hoshina. Players can also use Pyroxenes to refresh AP by purchasing 120 AP for 30 Pyroxenes which is a very reasonable value.
Getting Stronger and Increasing Your Students Stats
Blue Archive is a game that relies on powering up your heroes to increase their stats and damage numbers. Players can improve and train their students to make them stronger as it’s a requirement in every gacha game to progress further in the contents. For general progression, we always recommend power farming through the main story till at least Chapter 6. This is for 2 reasons:
- Players can unlock all the different content available after clearing Chapter 6 Stage 1. This will give players access to more resources and new content.
- In Blue Archive, leveling of your students is directly related to the current level of your account. For example, if your account rank is Level 7, then the maximum you can level any of your students will also be Level 7. This forces players to power farm and sweep stages to increase their player level so they can improve their student level and make them stronger
There are many ways to power up your students. Let’s take a look at some of the ways:
- Level Up
- Abilities Level Up
Level Up is the most basic method where players can increase their favorite students’ levels and increase their base stats. Players can level their students either by engaging with them in battles or by providing them with Activity Reports. These Activity Reports are obtained through farming the different stages, through events, and Base Defense in Commissions. These Activity reports come in different rarities as well – Novice Activity Report, Normal Activity Report, Advanced Activity Report, and Superior Activity Report. Players can feed them to their students in the Level Up menu either by Auto selecting or manually clicking 1 by 1.
Abilities are the skills each and every student has of its own and is unique. Players can level up their abilities by going to the Basic Info and going to the Abilities tab. In the tab, players will all of the abilities the student possesses as well as upgrade them using Blu-Ray’s, Tech Notes, and Aether Dust. Players can get all of these resources from the resource gathering stages and can simply check the location of the material by clicking on it and seeing where it’s available. Different students require different types of resources depending on their Academy and role. However, the base resource remains the same but gets divided according to the Academy.
Every student has 4 different skills and abilities:
- Normal Attack – This is the normal attack that doesn’t require any skill cost to be used and students use this attack on their own according to their normal attack speed. The normal attack damage has different numbers for different students which players can check by going into detail.
- Sub Skill – Sub Skills are the skills that activate for some time or in some duration automatically by the Students. Every student has different sub-skills and different pre-requisites to activate them.
- Basic Skill – Basic Skills are also another skill which is with Students from the start of the battle. These can also be called passive skills as they don’t have separate animations or duration and are active permanently unless mentioned otherwise.
- EX Skill – EX Skills are the major skills that can have a range or area and can be controlled manually. These skills can be considered like Ultimate skills in similar games. Every EX Skill costs some Skill Cost that can be seen at the bottom right side of the screen during your battles.
Equipment is the clothing you equip your students to increase their stats as well as give them substance. Each student has 3 different slots for different equipment. Each equipment has its own main stats and substats. Each piece of equipment comes in different rarities with the lowest being T1. Students can be equipped by going to the Basic Info menu and Equipment tab. There, they can auto equip or manually equip the required equipment. Players can also enhance this equipment using Enhancement Stones. Equipment is available in different story stages and can be acquired by sweeping them.
Mystic is basically the star-up system where players can increase the star of their students. For example, if the student is 3-Star, players can increase it to 4-Star by increasing the student’s Mystic. This can be done by using the specific students Eleph’s. As explained above, these Elephs are like fragments.
Relationships are what we build with our students in Blue Archive. Players can do this through the Café system by interacting with the students and increasing their relationship level with that particular student. Students get bonus stats at every increased Relationship rank. Players can also increase the Relationship leves of students using the MomoTalk feature which we will talk about later in this guide. The bonuses gained are little but they definitely matter in the long run.
PvP and PvE Gameplay Modes in Blue Archive
Blue Archive is a game that features a diverse variety of PvE as well as PvP modes. PvE modes feature a ton of content like Main Story called Missions, Commissions, Bounty, and Total Assault. The PvP Modes currently features the Tactical Challenge. However, keep in mind certain modes and content unlock after reaching a certain level of Story Mode. Here are the milestones and the content unlocked:
- Cleared Mission Chapter 1 Stage 4 – Commission Unlocked
- Cleared Mission Chapter 2 Stage 1 – Café Unlocked
- Cleared Mission Chapter 2 Stage 4 – Lessons Unlocked
- Cleared Mission Chapter 3 Stage 1 – Bounty Unlocked
- Cleared Mission Chapter 3 Stage 2 – Crafting Unlocked
- Cleared Mission Chapter 4 Stage 1 – Total Assault Unlocked
- Cleared Mission Chapter 6 Stage 1 – Tactical Challenge Unlocked
Commissions are the first PvE mode you unlock after clearing main story 1-4. This area is only limited to farming Credit Points and EXP materials for making your students stronger in the beginning. Each of these farming areas has different stages and the quality of resources obtained goes gradually higher with the level of the stage you clear. Café is the next PvE mode which unlocks after clearing 2-1 of the main story. This should be relatively easy as we unlock fast speed in battles as well after 1-5. In this café, players can grow their relationship with their students and increase their relationship rank. They can also generate AFK resources like Credit Points and AP. This feature is highly important for all players, as it gives bonus resources and needs to be looked after. Players can also customize their Café’s by adding more furniture, wall paintings, decorative items, and accessories. The happier your students are in your Café, the better chances of getting their relationship rank up. You can also interact with your students in the Café to know more about them.
Lessons unlock after clearing 2-1 and are another way to upgrade your students. They help in building your relationship with your students as well as farming skill upgrade materials. These are the ability improvements we talked about during the ability upgrade section above. The next feature unlocked is the Bounty system where players can get more ability upgrade items but this feature is gated by a Daily Entry limit which resets every day after server reset. Crafting unlocks after clearing 3-2 will help you craft different items like gifts, furniture, and accessories by utilizing Keystones. Keystones is the crafting currency that can be obtained mostly from daily and weekly missions/tasks.
Raids are also available in Blue Archive and are termed Total Assault. This feature allows players to farm more Pyroxenes. Raids are held every week for 7 days and are limited by the number of entry tickets players can get daily. Effectively, players get 3 tickets every day and can fight up to 21 battles per week. The total score and ranking are calculated at the end of the week and accordingly, the rewards are given to all players in their in-game mailbox. Players can challenge this raid on 4 difficulties with each having different rewards and rankings. Tactical Challenge is currently the only PvP mode available in Blue Archive which allows players to have a 1 on 1 fully automated match against other players. The matches are fully automated and hence, they can be a little bit difficult and frustrating if your students are not using their abilities and EX Skills the way you want them to. However, the rewards for it are very generous, going up to 8000 Pyroxenes for the top rankers. Players can get 5 tickets every day after server reset for doing Tactical Challenge. Players can further buy more tickets at the price of 60 Pyroxenes for 5 tickets.
Games like Blue Archive with heavy graphic requirements and high resource requirements can put a massive strain on your mobile phone. They are also susceptible to battery drainage on the smaller capacity of mobile phones. Playing Blue Archive on a bigger screen without worrying about battery drainage and lag-free gameplay is highly recommended. Hence, we recommend playing Blue Archive on a PC with BlueStacks using a keyboard and mouse.