Titan Damage Boosters: Miki vs. Tarlak vs. Ranvir vs. Wu Kong vs. Guardian Gazelle

Titan Damage Boosters. Who’s best?


Who is the best and most worthwhile to level and use? Wu Kong, Tarlak, Miki, Ranvir or Guardian Gazelle? Or some other attack buffer?

Update - 23 Jan, 2020. Analysis now includes Guardian Gazelle


Too long, didn’t read? My opinion is that the best is Miki followed by G. Gazelle follwed by Tarlak. Reason being is primarily because there isn’t the miss factor… I hate misses :stuck_out_tongue:

Between Ranvir and Wu Kong, it becomes more personal preference. I advocate for the C2P or F2P players to go the Wu Kong route and save those precious mats for someone unique & more worthy.

It’s also worth noting that in terms of availability, Wu Kong is the easiest to get a hold of… he’s the only one of the 5 heroes analysed who you can actually Train for free. The next most easily available is Tarlak who comes around once a month. Then Gazelle at once every 5 months. Ranvir & Miki as past HotM have very few opportunities (currently) to summon the hero if you missed out initially.


Note that this is my VIEW. Somewhat backed by math but ultimately you’ll have to make your own call and decision :slight_smile:
Also note, I’m primarily focusing on titans. I’ll mention versatility in part but mainly am focusing on titan application.

Search Key Phrases
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  • Who gets the Darts
  • Who gets the Scopes
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  • Gazelle and titans
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  • Tile Boost
  • Tile Damage
  • Tile Buff
  • Attack boost


First look at the damage dealt side of things. Then look at some other factors, differences, pros and cons for each of the heroes. Finally, we’ll have a quick look at some other attack boosters.

Damage Dealt

So quickly on this, the formula used is summarised in the “Damage Calculation” link below.

Basically I calculated the Damage Inflicted per successful hit, using arbitrary Attack & Defence Stats. Then to calculate the overall damage inflicted in a set of 3 tiles, I multiplied in the number of tiles & the miss chance

Overall, you can see that MIKI comes out on top. Gazelle & Tarlak get the same boost (thanks to both having +100%) and then Wu Kong & Ranvir do much of a muchness.

Per tile, Ranvir & Wu Kong do much more damage than the others, however the miss chance is what kills them…

Other Pros, Negatives & Considerations


Pro - Highest Damage Modifier (Long Term Average)
From above maths, Miki gives the biggest boost to Tile damage which is the BIGGEST factor in Titan Scores.

Pro - Very hardy stats
Survives well against all ranges of titans even at 3/70 (I take him against 12* titans at 3/70 and he survives 1-2 hits)

Pro - Silence X3
Very handy against titans. Invaluable against Event & Rare Bosses. Can be substitute for the previously more common Proteus, Onatel or other Mana controllers with the added benefit of the attack buff.

Pro - Effect Duration
Miki applies the longest attack buff duration at 5 turns. (Wu & Ranvir also 5, Tarlak 4)

Pro - Attack Buff Stack
The attack buff applied stacks with other attack buffs like those given by Zimkitty, Boldtusk, Ares, Khiona/ Black Knight or even Wu Kong/ Ranvir. It’s also a higher maximim stack than Tarlak at 170% (vs. 160% on Tarlak).

Negative - Opportunity to Summon as Past HotM
As a past HotM, the only way of getting Miki now is via the featured Hero in the Atlantis portal. This is very infrequently occurring (approx once every year to two years…). And then when he is available, the odds are still not great… Just saying.

Negative - Resist Silence
Bit ironic but so far, Miki is the only HotM who resists his own special skill effect. Limited tho in its application as there are very few silencers… Really just himself and Peter’s.

Negative - Slow Mana
Not the end of the world but he’s slow mana. Puts him at the worst of the 4 in contention at this point, requiring 12 tiles to charge (with no modifiers). However this isn’t a factor when using Mana Potions to ready the special as these are a fixed % of total mana.

Consideration - Caveat on tile buffing
Like with ranvir, Miki has a caveat on his tile damage boost in that the opponent has to have higher HP for it to be effective. Personally I don’t really see this as a negative, more a consideration as I haven’t ever felt the need to take him elsewhere BUT if people do take him against event bosses & the like, they usually have much inflated health stats so its not an issue till the end.

Consideration - Elemental Link (Mana Boost)
4% mana boost. Not a massive increase BUT it does decrease the required troop buff to reach break points.

Consideration - Barbarian Class
There are a number of very strong Barbarian Cass heroes. Some are common like Azlar and Grimm. Others are less so like Black Knight, Gravemaker and Kageburado. He wouldn’t be the top of my list but he’s up there.


Pro - Heal over time
Heals a decent quantity of health over time. Useful sub-effect tho arguably not as beneficial as Miki’s silence. It does however allow you to take a dual purpose against titans. Don’t need a healer cause he comes with both attack buff AND healing.

Pro - Attack Stat
Tarlak has the 2nd highest base attack stat of the 5* greens behind Margaret. Makes for a very effective stack against titans compared to Miki who is quite a bit worse than other options in terms of attack stat.

Negative - Opportunity to Summon as S2 hero
As a Season 2 hero, there is just one chance a month to summon him. While not as bad as your ability to get Miki or Ranvir, it’s still pretty terrible. In addition, he is only the featured hero approximately 3-4 times a year. Rest of the time, you got even less chances…

Negative - No Resist or Elemental Link
As it says, Tarlak has no inherent resistance nor elemental link which buffs a colour stack (as your likely to have against a titan)

Negative - Relatively Squishy
Because of the elevated attack stats, Tarlaks a bit more squishy. Essentially a problem as if he does, he can’t continue buffing… Good thing for that HoT right?

Consideration - Average Mana Speed
Not bad, not good but (as the name says) average.

Consideration - Family Bonus
Tarlak is a member of the Lagoon Family. This features Misandra and Wilbur as other highly effective heroes (Also Mok-Arr, Agwe and Gobbler but…)

Consideration - Monk Class
Again, there are some strong monk candidates out there. These include Wilbur, Wu Kong, Li Xiu, Drake Fong, Rana, Joon and Santa.


Pro - Resist Poison
Handy as most of the purple titans do some style of Poison damage. As he resists this, it means that he is more likely to survive Titan special strikes as the DoT aspect is ignored.

Pro - Elemental Link Buff (Dark Buff)
Again, very useful against Dark Titans where you will likely have a major Yellow Team stack. Essentially nukes the damage that the titan would do to your hereos from Slash and Special attacks. Note that Purple/Yellow are unique in regards to their being super effective against the colour which is super effective against them. This has added benefit against titans as if we compare to the Green Link equivalent (Margaret) she would be taken against a BLUE titan but she would buff against RED attacks. Not as useful.

Pro - Druid Class
Unlike the Monk and Barbarian Classes, there aren’t many great COMMON sinks for Druid emblems. The main ones are Zimkitty and Alby and in the 5* realm and Gaderius and Melendor in the 4* region. Others do include Master Lepus and Boss Wolf but neither are overly prevalent. Means that you’re less likely to have a better place to stick Druid emblems than on Ranvir.

Pro - Mana Speed = Fast
Fastest of our four being compared at Fast Mana Speed. This is a couple less tiles than the Average Tarlak and Wu Kong and more still than the slow Miki. I’ll repeat tho, if you’re using Mana Potions to ready the special, there is no change between Miki and Ranvir as mana pots are for a fixed % of the mana bar.

Negative - Opportunity to Summon as Past HotM
Having been and gone, like Miki, you’re only chance of getting Ranvir in the future (for now) is as the featured hero each month in the Atlantis portal. Odds aren’t great but you got a chance.

Negative - Caveat on Attack Buff
There is a clause in Ranvirs attack buff which states that it ONLY applies if the enemy has more HP than your hero. This effectively becomes a 50-50 in raids and is only guaranteed (mostly) against titans. I put this as a negative because none of the other 3 heroes were comparing to have any such Caveat involved.

Negative - Highest Miss Chance
At 35% ranvir is the worst in terms of overall missing. It’s also worth noting that his miss chance is >33% meaning that on average in a match 3 he will miss at least 1 tile.

Negative - Miss Chance Applies to Special Skills
Like Wu, ranvir can also cause special skills to miss. This could mean that your other skills and effects don’t take hold cause they miss… Such as a Blind from Joon/Drake, a defence down from White Rabbit, Wilbur or Vivica (costumed) or an elemental defence down from G. jackal… That could prove very costly in the end both in terms of surviving and on total damage dealt.

Negative - Lowest Damage Modifier (long term average)
From the math above, Ranvir gives the lowest contribution to damage modification. Not much more to say.

Consideration - Sniping Damage
I mention this as a consideration rather than a pro as in the scheme of things, sniping damage is quite low in its contribution to Titan Damage scores. The main place it impacts is when you use Ranvir in raids.

Consideration - 5 * vs. 4 * Wu Kong
Negative: As a 5* who, from a damage buff perspective, does the same thing as Wu Kong, Ranvir costs MUCH more in both resources, emblems and most importantly Ascention Materials. These resources could be better spent building depth and versatility
Pro: Ranvir as a 5* maxed has more HP, defence and attack stat than Wu Kong… Just gotta get him there.

Wu Kong

Pro - 4 * Hero
Being a 4* hero compared to the others as 5*, Wu is VERY cheap to max and emblem up. Also costs less time and readers and resources.

Pro - Classic Hero (Vanilla/ S1/ Session 1)
Benefit here is that he’s easily obtained (comparatively). You can summon him in any of the events (monthly or seasonal), in the Atlantis portal or normally. Added bonus you can train him in Training Camp for free.

Pro - No condition on attack Buff applying
Unlike Ranvir, Wu Kong has no caveat on the attack buff. He’s always going to buff the attack of your allies (but also miss…).

Negative - Miss Chance
Like with Ranvir there’s the miss chance. There’s nothing really more frustrating than seeing your tiles miss, knowing that it coulda done 5k worth of damage…

Negative - Miss Chance Applies to Special Skills
Like Wu, ranvir can also cause special skills to miss. This could mean that your other skills and effects don’t take hold cause they miss… Such as a Blind from Joon/Drake, a defence down from White Rabbit, Wilbur or Vivica (costumed) or an elemental defence down from G. jackal… That could prove very costly in the end both in terms of surviving and on total damage dealt.

Negative - No additional part to Special Skill
Unlike all the others in this comparison, Wu ONLY buffs the attack stats. There’s no healing, sniping or silencing or anything. Just attack stat. Means in order to get some of that added benefit, you have to take a second hero or use an item.

Negative - No elemental Link, Resist or Family Bonus
Unlike the shiner new heroes, Wu Kong is a vanilla S1 hero without any family, elemental link or native resistance.

Consideration - Monk Class
Again, there are some strong monk candidates out there. These include Wilbur, Wu Kong, Li Xiu, Tarlak, Rana, Joon and Santa.

Consideration - Squishier…?
I put this as a bit of a question mark as Wu Kong at 4/70 has comparable stats to Ranvir at 3/70. Benefit here though is that you can emblem Wu now rather than having to spend those precious ascension mats that you gotta spend on a 5* hero and essentially eliminate the squisshyness… But Wu Kong comparatively is inherently more squishy and less survivable than the other 5* options.

Consideration - Average Mana Speed
As with Tarlak, not bad, not good but (as the name says) average.

Guardian Gazelle

Pro - No miss
Like with Miki & Tarlak, there is no chance of missing… leads to less frustration but not necessarily more damage overall…

*** Pro - No Caveat on Attack buff***
Like Wu & Tarlak, the attack buff applies all the time. Doesn’t need for the enemy health to be high or whatever…

Pro - Removes all effects & debuffs & Gives immunity also (NOTE ONLY ALLIES, Not Gazelle
Removes all negative status effects and debuffs that are active… Also gives immunity to future debuffs & status effects.
Most titans specials cast a debuff or a status effect on your heroes so this is pretty good. Only hero who suffers the negative effects/debuff is gazelle herself

Pro - Damage Reduction for Allies
The 50% reduction in incoming damage for the allies is great, especially when you’re hitting bigger titans. Means that your heroes are more likely to survive 3-4 direct hits from the titan!

Pro - Self Preservation
Unlike all the other damage buffers, Gazelle has a self-preservation component to her special. She gives herself a powerful heal over time. Means that she can recover & hang around longer to keep firing her special skill off!

Consideration - Druid Class
I haven’t put this as either a Pro or a Negative as druids have two sides to the coin. On one hand, there aren’t many great druids out there so she can easily become a prime candidate for getting the emblems… On the other hand, the druid special summons minions and minions aren’t great for titans (adds a delay to turn progression)…
So something to consider really

Negative - Removes all other buffs from allies & prevents future buffs
The other side to the Status Effect Removal is that Gazelle removes all your active buffs… like attack boost & defence boost etc…
Additionally, while the special is active, no additional buffs can be put on… so you are stuck at +100% attack (while miki etc… you can boost further with a banner or someone like Boldtusk)

Negative - Hard to Get
As an event hero, Gazelle is not easy or cheap to get… there is a 0.2% chance of summoning her in an event summons…
HOWEVER, event summons come around once every 5 months so they appear more than recurring HotM…

Negative - Mana Removal from allies if she dies
The main negative to Gazelles special is that if/when she dies, she removes all mana from your heroes… ALL of it…

Hero Cards for Rererence

Miki card - 3/70 & 4/80

Tarlak card - 3/70 & 4/80

Ranvir card - 3/70 & 4/80

Wu Kong card - 4/70

Gazelle card - 3/70 & 4/80


Damage Calculation


Sections removed over time.

Tile Buffing

Removed as the Tile Damage Calculation is more accurate.

Tile Buffing

The following is mathematical. Plain and simple. It’s going to look at how much each hero “buffs” tile damage.
The maths will look at 3 tiles matched, aimed at the titan in the NON CRITICAL spot.

Math formula is:
(3 tiles) * (1+ attack buff) * (1- miss chance) = (equivalent tiles)

This section is looking at the tile POWER not necessarily damage dealt as this calculation gets messy and has other non-linear parameters. See next section down for damage dealt.

Brief summary

So based on the tile buffing, Miki > Tarlak > Wu Kong > Ranvir


Wu Kong being better than Ranvir here is hilarious but so expected. Ranvir is such a mistaken design I completely don’t get it. I regret it the most this year that I fell for all this “5* Wu Kong” hype and gave him the darts. He’s so underwhelming. Glad Miki appeared few months later so I don’t have to rely on Ranvir anymore. But Inari could have got the darts. Now darts are gone.


Interesting. I have my Wu Kong maxed, at the moment I benched him and go mono - overall scores are about the same for me most of the time, when I don’t use big mana.
Was thinking about maxing Ranvir, but with those numbers, I think I still can take Wu and max Vivica or Joon or Neith or whoever. (we’re facing titans up to 9*, so survivability is no issue)

Thank you!


I’m gonna say Miki then Tarlak, I don’t care for Wu or Ranvir too much but Ranvir is more powerful than Wu by default. He hits his target, something Wu doesn’t do, they both have accuracy issues. And Ranvir has element link as well as resists poison.

That said Miki is number 1. I want Tarlak as well but not missing him having Miki. Wu is maxed for more holy depth esp in the 4* range, and I doubt Ranvir will go past 3/70 until all my yellow 5s I need are maxed and I just have the extra darts to give him.

Team Miki forever.


Alright, finished editing with the exception of the table summarising the damage buff & possibly comparison of some other attack buffers

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There is a horse’s for courses element to it as well. I have both Ranvir and Tarlak. I take Ranvir to purple and red titans and Tarlak to yellow, green and blue.

PS. You’ve a typo in your TLDR paragraph where you refer to Ranvir as Range.

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Below is a great review of the damage boosters. (You may need to slide to the right to view the full table) https://www.reddit.com/r/EmpiresAndPuzzles/comments/cko6qq/miki_review_hotm_august_2019/?utm_source=amp&utm_medium=&utm_content=post_body

- Avg Atk Buffed Atk Damage Formula Damage w/ Blind % Buffed v Not
Wu Kong 718 2046.3 (2046.3/689)1.35 4.347 2.956 2.796x
Ranvir 718 2118.1 (2118.1/689)1.35 4.544 2.960 2.800x
Tarlak 718 1436 (1436/689)1.35 2.695 2.695 2.549x
Miki 718 1651.4 (1651.4/689)1.35 3.255 3.255 3.078x

Solely based on damage boosting, Miki is king, followed by Ranvir, Wu and Tarlak.


Miki has the same caveat as Ranvir in that the attacked has to have more health then the attacker for the buff to count. Otherwise great write up


I’m just saying the same thing that @Math-Teacher stated a few post above (but in a slightly different way). Note from the damage calculation thread that the damage done is proportional to (attack/defense)^1.35. We can ignore the defense which is constant across our comparison. So, to get the actual damage done, we need to include the ^1.35 before the miss percent effect. Doing so, you get the following average damage in order of effectiveness assuming the damage is 1 without an attack boost :
Miki: 3.08 = (1+1.3)^1.35 * (1-0)
Ranvir: 2.80 = (1+1.95)^1.35 * (1-0.35)
Wu Kong: 2.80 = (1+1.85)^1.35 * (1-0.32)
Tarlak: 2.55 = (1+1)^1.35 * (1-0)

So, based purely on expected damage increase, the order is Miki, Ranvir, Wu, Tarlak.


Obviously, tile damage is king against titans but it’s worth noting that Miki only boosts normal attacks and not special skills.


I only have Wu so he is the best!


Thanks guys, will update a section to include :slight_smile:

Alrighty updated to include a section about the DAMAGE BOOST. I set the Attack & Defence at an arbitrary value of 500 & 400 (respectively) with a theta modifier of 1.35. Thanks @Math-Teacher and @samoapop.

Also added in about miki’s caveat (thanks @Sid3ways). Forgot it as I never use miki outside titans :stuck_out_tongue:


I’m probably just dense, but do the numbers account for stacking? For instance, let’s say we bring Tarlak and four purples for a yellow titan. With the calculation as-is, each purple tile is doing 4 x 348 (1392) damage. But if we add the four purple heros together, it should be 2239 damage, right?

Not sure exactly how the colour stacking works in…

I think it may actually be adding all the attacks together inside the bracket…

So the formula would become:
Damage = 100 * (((Attack 1 + attack 2 + attack 3 + attack 4) * [attack buff]) / (defence))^1.35 * [number of tiles] * (1 - [miss chance])

Again not 100% sure. It will likely be covered in the damage calculation thread linked above.

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One thing you didn’t mention is that Wu Kong also increases your special attack as well, not just tiles. I am not sure if Raniv is similar, but the others only increase normal tile damage/slash attacks. That would be a Pro for Wu Kong.

For all of them, I think considerations should also be made for what happens when you have two additional heroes that have attack buffers, which are stackable? For example, if you were to add Boldtusk, it’s an extra 48% given to all heroes, which can be stacked with Ravnir, Wu Kong, Tarlak, and Miki. If you add in Zimkitha, it maxes the attack buffer available to 160% and 170% respectively for those affected by Tarlak and Miki’s special.

Here’s an analysis of Boldtusk with Tarlak I ran into a few months back:

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That is the theory, in practice, both Ranvir and Wu fail 35%, but globally, they are designed to fail the strong chip much more than the weak ones, so it is usual to see, against purple, for example, how all fails the yellow chips, all even with diamond and none with worthless colors. In addition, the game is designed so that, wherever you put it, the Titan searches for it and kills it, before others. There is no better proof of this than to see how in alliances, the first positions of titan are covered by those that have miki. They will deny it, but it is like that and it has always worked that way.

Personally never noticed this in my many many months of killing titans… Wu Kong and/or Miki have as much of a chance of being hit as any other from my experience


Well I have Wu Kong,Ranvir 3/70, Miki 4/80 +5 and I don’t have Tarlak but I can say that , Ranvir do big difference without any mana pot ,Wu Kong dose almost same damage as Ranvir but slightly less but he doesn’t live long enough and Miki is about useless without mana pot because it takes half a minute to charge him and then he do something except when you start with good bord from beginning but usually don’t. So I always get better scor With Ranvir then Miki because he charge fast on Titan and Miki of course is brilliant for bosses on event’s and sometimes in raids