Lemme hear you scream for the Symbiote team!!
The introduction of Spider-Man (Symbiote) (hereby shortened to SSM) is already a game-changer to the Spider-verse Spider totems team. The inclusion of Scream changes the game further! And when Anti-Venom is released into the maddening world out there, the Symbiotes team may very well be the meta of Marvel Strike Force!
But, Anti-Venom shall be discussed in a guide dedicated to just his beautifully ugly mug.
This guide is for the ear-piercingly delightful symbiote
There are three main statistics we’re most interested in for Scream. No, we don’t mean her measurements! We mean health, focus and speed.
Just what were you thinking, checking out a deadly symbiote like that?
Scream is a controller type, so the application of status ailments and debuffs are crucial on her part, and the main stat that runs this engine is focus. I’ve always loved to compare focus stats against Jessica Jones, who always seems to resist against 90% of negative effects and successfully clears enemy buffs easily as wiping sweat off her brow – except that she wouldn’t have sweat it at all!
According to MSF.gg, at level 75, 7-stars, 7 red stars and gear tier 14, Jessica Jones gains a high of 8,715 focus, while SSM trails behind her by a mere 616 at 8,099 focus! We mentioned in our Spider-Man (Symbiote) Character Guide that this is a whooping high amount of focus to have, especially since he’s a brawler, not a controller!
Guess what? Scream trails behind SSM, at 8,012 focus. A bit concerning, yes?
Now consider her health stat, which will greatly control the amount of health restoration she restores to the team (see her passive skill later in this article). We can easily rely on SSM’s Passive skill that heals upon each application of a debuff on the enemy, but why stop there when Scream’s Passive helps too!
Scream also trails behind SSM, at 176,000 compared to 249,000! You might think, “Why not? SSM is a brawler, who likely needs to face more counterattacks, so a large health pool is less critical for a controller.” Well… Venom, also a controller, at the same stats, have 258,000 health…! And to think that Venom doesn’t have any skills that heal his symbiote siblings, thus having fewer reasons to keep such a large HP pool.
And finally, Scream’s speed stat, and it’s not for the general reason that everyone wants to have two or three turns before the enemy gets theirs. You have two reasons to want Scream to hustle as fast as possible: 1) applying negative effects will start healing up any wounds your team may have, which has been making this team such a viable force in raids, 2) the sooner you trigger one death in battle – preferably via your enemy – the sooner your team can benefit from Scream’s Speed Up buff, and 3) gather up two more energy in order to execute her Ultimate Skill and thwart the enemies’ attempts to taunt and buff themselves, in particular, Drax and Juggernaut.
Did we say two reasons? We meant three – and they’re all good ones!
Besides, she’s got a pretty good speed! Not comparing Scream’s 120 speed to Black Widow’s 155, this lady symbiote is still a speedster of deadliness! Carnage is your fastest Spider-totem member, while Spider-Man is the slowest, at 116. But after facing off against so many Spider-Man opponents, we’re very clear that he is anything but slow!
The verdict? Scream’s stats are really subpar! No wonder she’s given to us as a free character in a campaign!
Fortunately, her skills are her features to truly die for!
Level 7 Full Effects
Attack primary target for 250% damage + apply Bleed + clear 1 positive effect. Chain to 2 adjacent targets for 200% damage + apply Bleed and clear 1 positive effect.
This attack can Chain to Stealth targets. Counterattack breaks this Chain.
The third character ever in the game to by-pass the hindrance that stealth possesses! Deadpool doesn’t count, btw, because he needs Domino to bypass it. Well, ok, theoretically, Deadpool becomes the third character that can overcome the problem with stealth because we now have Domino.
This still doesn’t diminish Scream’s novelty because she’s still the first character whose basic skill can chain to a stealth’d enemy. It’s been a pain when you can’t target that character stealth’d by S.H.I.E.L.D. Operative or Loki, and this can really change the dynamics of hiding your most injured members. Not just for the enemy team, but for yourself as well when your own Black Widow, Elektra, etc., want to veil themselves but still end up getting chained to. Plus, their positive effect gets cleared!
It’s been a beef of ours when Venom gets stunned, or the enemy Drax doesn’t already have Defense Down when Miles gets his turn in. We’re stuck piling our attacks on that same tanker while a more serious threat, particularly Mordo, slowly inches his way to get his turn in. Scream evens this out when her basic skill can also clear taunts! Lovely!
You will definitely want to target either the protectors that have taunt (not that you have much choice in this), and high-priority targets so that Carnage can aim them first and chain to others. Most of all, prioritise Scream against enemies hiding behind stealth. Unfortunately, she won’t be as effective against those protected by the Hand Sentry’s stealth and evade buffs, but at the very least, she’ll clear their evade buffs and open them to attacks when their Stealth buff runs out. Should Loki use his ultimate skill, his clones aren’t much of an issue, but more importantly, chaining to those he cast stealth on will effectively nullify Loki’s skill’s use!
With Scream, you can hide, but you can’t run! Literally!!
Level 7 Full Effects
Attack primary target for 280% damage + clear 2 positive effects + apply Offense Down. Chain to 2 adjacent targets for 240% damage + clear 2 positive effects + apply Offense Down.
This attack can Chain to Stealth targets. Counterattack breaks this Chain.
Now, this skill might be a trick to those who haven’t actually tried using Scream in a full symbiote team yet.
While it seems like Scream’s Special skill is just an improved version of her basic skill, there are three factors that make it move valuable than what it seems on the surface.
The first is that it applies Offense Down on enemies. If you review all the symbiotes’ skills, you’ll find that the only buffs you get are Defense Up, Speed Up, Regen and Immunity, all of which are defensive and supportive, none are offensive. You might think to yourself, “Why bother increasing attack strength when the symbiotes are already so strong?” Our reply would be, “You can never have too much power!!”
It requires a work of art to time yourself to apply Offense Down on an enemy, and getting Anti-Venom’s turn in to use his Ultimate skill. In short, Anti-Venom checks what debuffs his target has, and applies their opposite buffs onto himself and the entire symbiote team. Now try firing off all your symbiotes’ Ultimate or Special skills!
The next is that you’ll have a bit of assurance when facing certain enemies. Burst damages can still kill off a symbiote, especially when Venom is not at 95% health! You can give yourself assurance that Anti-Venom will right this wrong when he joins the team, but what if the burst damage is on Anti-Venom himself? Getting shivers yet? You’d better — the symbiote team doesn’t have a tank!
Remember a tip in our Marvel Strike Force Raid Guide where we encouraged you to conserve your special and ultimate skills? This is one of those times when you should only use Scream’s special skill when appropriate, for example, on Hulk’s second turn, you know he’ll use his Jump, and that can really stomp out three members. Or when you aren’t able to take out Iron Man and War Machine before they unleash their strongest attacks, that overly powerful Unibeam and Cluster Bombs. That’s when you employ damage mitigation, something we’d like to call “Damage Control 101”. That’s when you start “Splitting Hairs”!
The third is when you increase Scream’s Special skill to level 7, and we do think it’s worthwhile to spend those valuable Orange ability materials so that Scream can clear 2 enemy buffs. It’ll be more expensive than Venom’s basic skill that can clear 2 buffs at level 5, but since Scream can chain, you can clear 2 buffs on up to 3 enemies! Very worth the energy cost, indeed!
Now, combine all the above factors, and you’ll see how Scream becomes more and more valuable to the symbiote team!
Level 7 Full Effects
Attack primary target for 300% damage + apply Slow for 2 turns and Disrupted for 1 turn. Attack adjacent targets for 250% damage + apply Slow for 2 turns and Disrupted for 1 turn.
Reduce Speed Bar for primary and secondary targets by -30%.
This attack cannot be Blocked.
Ohhh! This skill is precious! While Miles Morales provided the solution to your protector problem, particularly the likes of Juggernaut or even Captain America, Scream solidifies it!
Miles applies Disrupted to the primary target, and at a certain percentage to all other targets (which has proven to be really unreliable and few in-between). Scream applies Disrupted to the primary target and adjacent targets, and you only need to worry about having enough focus to overcome their resistance! To sweeten the deal, Scream applies Slow as well – for 2 turns when upgraded to level 7! Two turns of Disrupted! Can you imagine how many buffs are denied that bunch of enemies that faced Scream’s ultimate skill and dared to survive from it?
Oh, there’s still one more factor to consider, especially in consideration that enemy numbers are large in raid – you can decide whom Scream targets, thereby having better control over how many enemies will launch counterattacks on her. Remember when Daredevil gets his second turn in (because the enemy AI somehow has incredibly high evasion but the developers still have the cheek to amount it to our poopy luck) and he buffs his Defender allies with counterattack? You could probably handle one or two of them. But, again, in raids, there’s absolutely going to be two full teams of Defenders with maxed out attack stats! Do you really want Miles Morales to trigger all of those counterattacks??
Scream is superior to Miles. ‘Nuff said.
Now, as with her Special skill, execute just before Anti-Venom’s turn, and he’ll be spreading Immunity and Speed Up to your entire symbiote team!
Well, honestly, this combination of skills isn’t as incredible as it seems. You’ll likely be getting several Speed Up buffs (that don’t stack) from Scream’s Passive skill, and Anti-Venom’s Special skill provides the Immunity buff without any other conditions. The main use for this combo of attacks is to give your team that one extra turn of protection against Heal Block, Bleed, or debuffs.
Do note that Pyro’s Special skill can clear your Immunity and apply 2 or more counts of Bleed. Still a painful experience!
Level 7 Full Effects
On Death of any Character, heal all SYMBIOTE allies for 10% of this character’s Max Health + apply Speed Up for 2 turns.
If this character has 3 or more SYMBIOTE allies, apply –30% Resistance to all enemies.
This. Is. Gold!
With the original Spider totems team, you would want to primarily target reducing as many targets’ HP to critical as possible, without any rush to kill them off. Yes, your targets may heal up later, but that gives you more targets to drop into the red zone and trigger Carnage’s speed bar boost again.
Now, with Scream’s passive skill, you’ll have every reason to obtain a kill every one or two turns (depending on what level you upgrade her passive skill to). On death of an enemy, even a summoned minion, all symbiote allies will get the Speed Up buff, which covers the time gap in-between your kills. Plus, without Miles Morales’ special skill that applies slow, Scream picks up the job with her ultimate skill.
Carnage’s 30% speed bar bump + Scream’s Speed Up buff + Scream’s Speed Down debuff = a blindingly fast team! It’s already possible to engage in a battle where the enemy doesn’t get a turn in. The addition of Scream shores up that possibility!
Most of all is that she also heals all symbiote allies! An enemy dies – your team heals; your character (that isn’t Scream) dies – your team heals; all of Ronan’s summons die – your team heals. There’s seriously no need for Anti-Venom or anyone else to equip the ISO-8 Healer class! Oh, and do you remember how you would kill off an enemy with SSM or Venom, but not heal the team because no debuffs were applied? Scream provides the solution to that! Did an enemy die from an overdose of bleeding? You team also gets to heal from that!
At level 7, Scream will heal everyone for 10% of her max HP. Yes, it’s tempting to equip the Healer class on her to make it 15%, but considering how there can be as many as 20 enemies in a raid dungeon, you’ll be healing twice her full health!
#1 Pure Symbiote Team
Scream, Carnage, Spider-Man (Symbiote), Venom, Anti-Venom
While this team doesn’t have any tanker, there’s still a bit of reasoning for this placement order: SSM has an innate evasion stat which attempts to protect the team against thrown chain attacks, thus, placing him in the middle of the crowd. Carnage will rely on Venom’s Defense Up buff, but as he is a brawler, his high attack stat allows him to drain more than others. Venom’s Defense Up buff applies to all symbiote allies, but it is his high health and self-heal passive skill that allow him to soak up damage. Scream, as you know from above, is found wanting in stats, thus, placing her at one end of the row, while Anti-Venom is placed on the other end to provide some little extra safety. He should be considered as the most valuable member of the symbiotes team due to his supportive skills and revival ability.
We have a bit of an update from the use of a symbiote-heavy team in our Raid Guide. We previously focused on merely applying as many debuffs as possible, and saving Miles’ and SSM’s special skills to double a target’s debuffs. Integrate one more focus point: reducing your enemies’ health to 25%.
Carnage’s passive skill infuses your symbiotes’ speed bars by 30% at level 7 every single time an enemy’s health drops into the red zone. Any character that gets a full speed bar due to his passive will immediately get a turn, without the enemies getting even 1 pixel of speed bar fill. At 30%, all you need is to get 3 enemies – just 3, even if it’s minions – into the red zone, and your entire symbiote team is essentially blessed with full speed bars! Even if Carnage’s passive skill is only at level 6, granting 25% speed bar fill, it’s still a hefty boost of 75% of your speed bar!
We had the privilege once of facing off against two Nobu, who summoned 6 Hand minions in that same turn. Plus, the rest of the enemies already had one foot in the grave. SSM executed his ultimate skill!
The result: all 6 minions were wiped, and two more were dangerously close to death. Our Carnage had his passive skill upgraded to level 7, giving an amazing 30% speed bar fill. That’s 8 targets in the red zone, multiplied by 30%, equally to 240% speed boost! Each symbiote took two turns consecutively, and wiped out enemy remnants before Spider-Man and Miles Morales could even get their turns back in!
Plus, the symbiotes were fully nursed back to health.
Overall, the ideas for using this, or any symbiote-heavy team, will be:
1. Apply as many debuffs as you can.
2. Get one kill as early as possible, then hold off on killing.
3. Reduce as many enemies’ health as possible to 25%.
4. Kill when:
– Speed Up buff is wearing off
– There’s no more targets to whittle down
– Some enemy is about to apply Heal Block/burst damage
– As it pleases you
Of course, always prepare a back up raid team, because even when Anti-Venom is present to revive dead symbiotes, anything can still happen! Maybe two or more symbiotes are killed off. Maybe Anti-Venom is the one killed off with an ill-timed Captain Marvel ultimate skill. Maybe Anti-Venom won’t have his turn yet, and only one enemy with one pixel of health left remains. Always be prepared – maybe even consider filling in empty slots with Spider-Man and Miles Morales!
#2 Spider Totem Team
Spider-Man (Symbiote), Carnage, Scream, Venom, Spider-Man
This would be our recommended team setup prior to the release of Anti-Venom. Until he officially joins the game and everyone has a shot at unlocking him, Spider-fans will have to console themselves with this almost-symbiote team.
Similar to the original spider totem team set up that we introduced in our Spider-Man (Symbiote) Character Guide, SSM and Spider-Man are stationed at both ends to stave off any possible thrown weapon chains, while Scream replaces Miles Morales in the middle mainly to try to keep her as safe as possible.
As to why Miles is the non-symbiote being replaced, it’s only partly because he’s given a new place among the Young Avengers. Discussed above in Scream’s skills, we understand that Scream is essentially an upgraded version of Miles, and their roles as disruptors is evident. Plus, this time, the team disruptor is given the controller role, unlike Miles who is given a brawler role, but whose skills are pretty much a controller, just like what we commented in Guessation: Spiderverse.
Furthermore, among the members, only SSM has something of a huge damage burst, while the rest are mostly DPS-based attacks. Carnage’s special skill, while potentially able to 1HKO a Defense Up full health protector with Deflect, is heavily reliant on the perfect scenario to do that. Spidey’s ultimate skill doesn’t. And while Spidey’s ultimate skill doesn’t have the same benefits as SSM’s, his damage output of 500% overthrows SSM’s damage output of 340%. When it comes to burst damages, Spidey still ranks one of the superiors among spider totems!
Now, you can resume your spider totem team with an improved-Spider-Man (Miles Morales) in a brand new look!
#3 Inhuman Symbiotes
Scream, Carnage, Spider-Man (Symbiote), Venom, Yo-Yo
Taken from the arrangement we optimize in Team #1, this team adds Yo-Yo instead of Spider-Man. She, too, gets an evasion buff during her turn, plus as a protector, her stats aid in her survivability. The only problem is, in this team, she won’t get any healing at all, thus, making her more vulnerable. Well, strictly speaking, the Inhuman team is pretty vulnerable and isn’t meant for drawn-out battles like raids.
Yes, Spidey would have benefitted from the application of debuffs on the enemy team, but Yo-Yo’s uniqueness as a tauntless protector brings a little surprise to the team. On every enemy turn, she will apply one count of Offense Down. That means, on every enemy turn, right before the enemy decides which skill to use, the symbiotes will heal! It will be amazing when you personally see for yourself the team healing every few seconds in the game, and green numbers popping up every so often!
#4 Scientific Symbiotes
Scream, Carnage, Spider-Man (Symbiote), Venom, Scientist Supreme
If you’re guessing from the team name that the mad doctor will join this team, then you are correct! Almost similar to team #3, Scientist Supreme stays in the corner, and hopefully out of range of enemy attacks.
For all accounts and reasons, this set up with Scientist Supreme should prove to be more effective than having Yo-Yo for the simple reason lying in her ultimate skill, Retro Vaccination. It heals everyone on the team, and when it applies so many debuffs on the enemy team, imagine how many times your symbiotes are going to heal again! While SS’s ultimate skill by itself does heal by quite a hefty amount, its greatest potential is truly unleashed only with the symbiotes!
And as with any team strategy involving Scientist Supreme, execute Field Trials on her next turn to see your team green with buffs and your enemy green with jealousy!
Oh, there’s a potential catch here to trip up this team set up, especially now that Scream is in the picture. Once you get at least one kill and one enemy in critical health, your four symbiotes will likely be cruising through their turns. This will result in their debuffs fading off long before SS can even have her next turn to cast her special skill. She’s not a symbiote, after all, just like your enemies (insert evil grin here).
So, try this with Scientist Supreme: instead of using her ultimate skill on her first turn in battle, where your symbiotes will likely be high in energy (not like they’re already high to begin with!), wait for a situation where you know you won’t have a chance to send any enemy into the red zone and SS will definitely get her turn in soon. That’s the optimal moment to fire her debuffs at everyone! The good, hopeful new is: everyone except SS will be debuffed with Speed Down, allowing SS to cruise to her next turn faster than anyone else.
Of course, if you see your team is on the verge of dying, or you know the enemy is going to use a burst damage or AOE skill to wipe out your alien parasites, don’t hesitate to heal them. It’s not worth the wait if your alien specimens aren’t around to benefit from SS’s experiments at all!
Recruiting This Madcat of a Symbiote
Scream’s orb’s shards can be obtained via the Parasitic Intentions event campaign:
This will run for only 14 days, so hurry and consume every last bit of campaign energy to get as many orb shards as possible!
And just in case it wasn’t clear, you earn orb shards via this campaign. Every 2,000 orb shards you collect entitles you to open a Parasitic Orb once.
As seen in the screenshots below, you’ll be getting at least 1 shard from each of the left and right pillars, for a minimum of 2 with each attempt.
After earning 27 shards from the event campaign, that means another 28 more shards to pull from the orbs, thus requiring at least 14 attempts.
Each attempt require 2,000 orb shards.
You’ll need a total of 28,000 orb shards to unlock Scream.
The hard difficulty campaign has three nodes that give a maximum of 700 orb shards, three that give a maximum of 600, and another three that give 500.
On any given day, without using any cores to replenish more campaign energy, we were able to garner 3,400 orb shards.
This amounts to only about 9 days needed to obtain the 28,000 orb shards and drawing the minimum 28 Scream shards to unlock her.
Within the duration of the event, that’s reasonable to get the free unlock.
Yup, we’re at the mercy of RNG for getting Scream to 7 stars.
Wait, did you think I was able to suggest unlocking Scream will be difficult? Not. At. All! She has a 45-shards requirement, 27 of which you can earn by completing all the campaign missions on hard difficulty for the first time. After that, she’ll join you as a 2-star character, thereby requiring another 265 shards to upgrade to 5-stars (in the event there comes a new legendary character requiring 5-star symbiotes, or if you want to use Scream for Shuri’s event), or 765 shards to fully max her out at 7 stars.
The chance to get 8 shards from the center pillar is at 48%, pretty high, but hopefully not high enough! And within this group of rewards, Scream shards drop at 14%, making it a 6.72% chance of getting them via the center pillar for every attempt you make. Meanwhile, the best drop rate of 100 shards is a mere 0.5%, which is truly and sincerely, aboveboard and beyond, rare to get. If you can get this lucky, might you not want to use it on your friendly neighborhood lottery ticket? Nope, of course not! It’s a gamer’s life for me!
To get 265 shards to make 5 stars, you’ll need at least 34 draws at 6.72%, or 3 draws at 0.5% (heh).
To get 765 shards and making 7 stars, you’ll need a whooping 96 draws (or 8 draws at 0.5%, in which we really truly strongly recommend you visit your closest lottery shop and invest your life savings)!
I see your wallet shaking.
Unless you intend to whale, you would want to target massing just 310 shards (45 to unlock, 265 to reach 5 stars) during this event period. This is especially so because after the Parasitic Intentions campaign wraps up, we won’t know when and how we’ll be given more chances to get more of Scream’s shards.
Take, for example, Domino, who could be unlocked via her Serendipity event campaign as well, but is currently not available elsewhere (except via orbs with terribly low odds, of course) and our thus far only second chance to obtain more of her shards are via a Blitz. Go ahead, tap on the “Find” button on Domino’s screen. The only options currently available are via orbs (Lady Luck, we are not).
When a character becomes popular, important, or powerful, this is what happens.
Should Scream become overly popular as well (perhaps thanks to us marvels here at Gamepleton), we shudder to think that Scream shards will become a real struggle to get in future. So use up every last bit of campaign energy you have! Wake up in the middle of the night if you have to! Earn those orb shards like they’re the last thing you’ll do! MWAHAHAHAHAHAHA!
Really, now, don’t sacrifice your sleep. As history as shown, every character ends up as a shop purchase or normal campaign reward, as proven by the shift in Captain Marvel’s shards. You just need to be patient and wait. Can you wait? Can you!?
If there is a character to want, at this point in time, this is the character you’ll want to beef up as much as possible. In fact, one cow probably won’t be enough to feed her till full – as described in the ‘Venom’ movie!
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