In most hero-collecting games, the more highly-rated or rare a hero is tends to mean they are objectively better than more common or lower-rated heroes. This is not necessarily so in AFK Arena, where today I explore the truly game-shattering character that is Saveas, a Rare-tier character that can’t reach the same heights as his Ascended brethren, but does an amazing job of carrying a team through vast swaths of the game.

As an agility-based mauler hero, Saveas is a back-line ranged damage dealer, throwing vicious spears at his foes. His skills, which at first seem to be a great detriment to his survivability, quickly become the unquestionable key to his success.

  • Burning Acrimony – Saveas sacrifices 8% of his current HP to greatly increase his attack speed for 10 seconds
  • Bloodied Spear – A passive ability which sacrifices 8% of his HP per attack in order to increase its damage 30%
  • Sacrificial Sustenance – Saveas’ active skill, he sacrifices 8% of his current HP to regain 4% of his max HP over 10 seconds

To reiterate, Saveas loses 8% of his health every time he attacks, he loses an additional 8% to attack faster (thus exacerbating the drain), and he sacrifices another 8% in order to gain 4% HP back. It sounds like Saveas will run himself out of health long before any enemy gets close enough to hit him, and if he does get attacked the loss of health will be untenable.

Luckily for us, Saveas gets expanded abilities as he levels up, with an absolute key one unlocked at level 121: Regenerate 20% of maximum health when Saveas makes a kill or kill assist. That’s right, every time he plays a major role in someone’s death, he regains 20% of his maximum health bar, ready to fuel more rage-inspired spear throwing. Coupled with the level 101 ability that reduces all incoming damage by 30% while his health is regenerating, all of a sudden Saveas becomes a true monster on the battlefield, especially when supported by a strong front-line.

When coupled with even a part-time healer like Tsai or Lucius, Saveas’ innate self-sustain is enough to make him last the entire fight. In many of my battles he is getting 3, 4, or even 5 kills, meaning his health is almost always topped up once he gets rolling. Though I haven’t specifically run the numbers to see how powers interact, it’s easy to conceptualize his effectiveness.

By the time the first enemy hero has died, likely to Saveas’ spear barrage, he is a) attacking much faster than normal, b) dealing extra damage with every attack, c) losing 30% less health than he would otherwise, and d) instantly healed for 20% of his max HP. By the time my front line has fallen and the last remaining enemies are finally focused on him, he’s a non-stop whirlwind of increasing damage. Add a little life leech to him and he’s just unstoppable.

I was lucky enough to finish the first stage of the Peaks of Time game area which gave me a powerful artifact called Dura’s Grace, which provides a hero a temporary shield whenever their active ability is used. With the sheer speed of his attacks and the amount of damage he puts out, he generates energy very quickly and so seems to always be in the throes of both his active ability and this additional protective shield.

There are many YouTube videos of Saveas basically conquering an entire opposing team single-handedly, particularly when not faced with any hard counters to his attacks. Control characters like Nemora (charm) and Arden (root) shut him down fairly decisively, but so long as he is able to attack he’s generating energy, health, and pouring out the damage.

Here’s a screenshot I sent to my guild shortly after getting Saveas over the 121 threshold. Not only did he survive the entire battle, he also absolutely blew away everyone else in damage done, healing, and damage received. This battle, and many since, have surely proven Saveas to be a necessary, perhaps even vital, part of my lineup for the foreseeable future.

With Saveas, I’m regularly taking down/conquering campaign stages and King’s Tower levels that are far beyond my current power rating, sometimes as much as 40% higher. He is also effectively the sole reason I’m able to top the charts for guild hunts.

With any luck you’ll be able to not only find him in the tavern but also add him as a useful part of your lineup as you level through the game world!

Header image by Lilith Games, creators of AFK Arena
Poetics plays AFK Arena with the guild Moonfire (#86215)—come join us!