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Stefan (Japanese: ソーンバルケ Soanvalcke) is a swordsman from the Grann Desert. He is Branded, even though his parents were beorc. Stefan dislikes both the laguz and the beorc because they both despise Branded. He becomes close with Mordecai.
- 1 Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance
- 2 Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn
- 3 Personality and character
- 4 Supports
- 5 Endings
- 6 Quotes
- 7 Other appearances
- 8 Trivia
- 9 Etymology and other languages
- 10 Gallery
- 11 References
Stefan plays no major role in the story, and in fact, can easily never be found, unless Lethe or Mordecai steps into a very specific region in Chapter 15: The Feral Frontier. Doing so causes him to appear from seemingly nowhere and be recruited by the Greil Mercenaries. If recruited, he tutors Ike in the art of swordplay, which can allow Ike to use the Aether skill later on.
Stefan travels with the mercenaries from then on, and helps them win the Mad King's War. His only other purpose is to espouse the nature of the Branded to either Soren or to Mordecai. After the war is over, he returns to the Grann Desert, where he does not appear again until late in the events of Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn.
Starting stats and growth rates
Stefan is a prepromoted swordmaster that is extremely overleveled for his join time. He has a very awkward and annoying recruitment requirement. Most players will often need to kill some laguz near his area to get Lethe or Mordecai up there, sacrificing some bonus experience. If anyone else goes to his tile, he will only give the Vague Katti and not join.
He has some of the best offensive stats in the game, having good strength and amazing skill and speed; his offensive growths are solid and he will reliably cap all three stats in the long run. His offense is further amplified with innate Astra and extra crit bonus, though this is mostly overkill for his join time. Though his defense and resistance bases are low for his level, they are enough for his join time, and his avoid is extremely high anyways. He also joins with the Vague Katti, though it is unlikely that any other sword-using units can use the Vague Katti for a while.
However, he has an extremely low luck base and growth, leaving him prone to being crit'd lategame (though very uncommon due to his high avoid). His defensive growths are also weaker, and his bulk will not keep up through lategame. Most significantly, he has no mount so he has low mobility and no canto, and he is swordlocked so he lacks 2-range combat, which hurts his excellent offense. Furthermore, in the japanese version of the game, he has no crit bonus, hurting his offense especially lategame. He is extremely overleveled for his join time, so his experience gain will be very low for several chapters relative to other units. If Stefan is used, it is recommended to not neglect other lower-level units (especially if they aren't promoted yet).
He joins with Astra already learned, a trait unique to him as he is the only playable beorc already equipped with a mastery skill. As innate Astra is one of the reasons to use him over Mia and Zihark, it is recommended to keep it; this leaves space for only 5-capacity skills like Miracle. However, if the player wants to remove Astra for whatever reason, any other offensive skill works with him due to his excellent skill and avoid.
Stefan has a heaven affinity which gives pure accuracy; this isn't a useful affinity for him because he uses swords and his skill base and growth are excellent. Soren's dark affinity gives some attack and avoid, benefiting both units. He is Stefan's best option, primarily because Stefan and Soren don't have many other options. Stefan's only other option is Mordecai, who has a useful water affinity but it does not complement Stefan's heaven affinity, and Mordecai has several other better support options.
Stefan does not appear until late into Part 4: Gods and Men. In Chapter 3: Distortions, he can be recruited, once again, by having a specific character stand in a specific spot in the desert. This time, it is Micaiah who must do this. From there, he once again aids the heroes in their quest.
Regardless of whether or not Stefan is recruited, he appears before Micaiah and Yune outside the Begnion capitol, Sienne. There, Yune questions what he is, revealing himself once again to be Branded, along with certain other characters that Yune recognizes as such.
After the world is freed from Ashera's judgement, Stefan returns to the Grann Desert once more. There, it is said that his fellow Branded eventually built a respectable nation, free at last from persecution.
Starting stats and growth rates
- Note: The above stats are Stefan's default stats. If a Radiant Dawn game was started via a data transfer from Path of Radiance, any stat Stefan capped in Path of Radiance will result in a boost to his base in the stat in question in Radiant Dawn.
Stefan joins as a 3rd tier trueblade in chapter 4-3. He has excellent offensive base stats for his join time, having good strength and amazing skill and speed, a high innate crit boost, and is equipped with the most powerful sword in the game, the Vague Katti. His base durability is high enough to take a few hits, but not enough to be extensively exposed.
However, his use is primarily limited to endgame. Recruiting him in 4-3 requires bringing Micaiah over to his specific tile (alternatively, a transferred Mordecai or Lethe). Thanks to Micaiah's terrible durability and lower movement (albeit decent by desert standards), she will likely not be able to recruit him until late in the chapter when the majority of enemy units are already dead on the rout chapter. His mobility upon join time is extremely limited by the desert, and though his Vague Katti is an excellent weapon, it is a 1-range weapon, so he cannot counter the many remaining 2-range units on his join map.
If Stefan is to be used for endgame, the player should make sure to conserve enough BEXP to cap him out, and try to feed him some kills on his join chapter if possible. His offensive growths are excellent, and he should reliably cap strength, skill, and speed before level 20. He, on average, can also cap health, defense, and resistance, though due to his class's lower durability caps, he is prone to dying to stronger enemy units.
Stefan has no base skills equipped. Due to his excellent skill and speed, just about any offensive skill works well for him. In particular, Wrath and Resolve help quite a bit as his durability is mediocre enough to activate them easily without dying quickly.
Stefan has a heaven affinity which gives a massive accuracy boost. As his use is primarily limited to endgame, he should be paired with any offensive unit that don't have any supports that really needs the accuracy boost. In particular, the last chapter has units that have extremely high avoid, making his heaven affinity valuable for endgame.
Personality and character
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Path of Radiance
Stefan gathered like-minded individuals to form a tiny, independent settlement which later became a great country.
|“||My sword has been beaten... Impressive. It is moments like this that make life worth living. I’m leaving for now. But, truly, I hope to see you again.||”|
— Stefan, in Path of Radiance.
|“||Unbelievable! You shattered my sword...||”|
— Stefan, in Radiant Dawn.
|“||A favourable opportunity, huh.||”|
— An unused quote intended to be Stefan's retreat quote in Path of Radiance.
|“||Sheathe your blade. If that’s all the skill you possess, you’re not ready to challenge me.||”|
— Stefan, when fighting Homasa in chapter 19 of Path of Radiance.
|“||I am the desert, and I brook no intrusion. Make peace with your goddess.||”|
— Stefan, when fighting Numida in part 4 chapter 3 of Radiant Dawn.
- Stefan was originally designed with blue hair, though his hair was changed to green to differentiate him from characters like Lucia and Geoffrey.
Etymology and other languages
|Names, etymology and in other regions|
|Language||Name||Definition, etymology and notes|
|English||Stefan||Form of Stephen.|
|Japanese||ソーンバルケ||Officially romanized as Soanvalcke.|
Artwork of Stefan from Radiant Dawn.
- XKAN, FE PoR: Stefan Character Profile (P. 108) Translation, kantopia.wordpress.com, Published: 6 August, 2016, Retrieved: 6 August, 2016
- FE RD: Stefan Character Profile (P. 79) Translation | kantopia, www.kantopia.wordpress.com, Retrieved: 31 March 2018
- "Initial concept art of Stefan. His hair was originally blue, but in order to differentiate him from others like Lucia and Geoffrey, we changed his hair color to green." — XKAN, FE PoR: Ilyana, Stefan, & Calill Concept Art (160-161) Translations, kantopia.wordpress.com, Published: 7 August, 2016, Retrieved: 19 September, 2016
|This article is part of Project Characters, a project focused in writing articles for every character present in the Fire Emblem series.|
|Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn|