Best Characters for Maddening | Fire Emblem: Three Houses (FE3H)

A guide for the best characters to use in Maddening mode in Fire Emblem: Three Houses (FE3H). Here we list the best characters for Maddening and which characters to recruit early and late.

Which Units Should You Use in Maddening?

Choose Based on Abilities and Stats

Three Houses' Maddening mode is an extremely difficult mode made for the die-hard fans of the series. It's difficulty level spikes up a whole notch, so choosing the best characters isn't a luxury anymore. Things like personalities, likes, and origins shouldn't even be considered, and all decisions must be made with stats, abilities, and potential in mind.

Best Characters for Maddening


FE3H Character Portrait - Annette.png

The first thing you will notice when playing Maddening is the over leveled and high stat enemies. It is only natural to think of ways to level the playing field. Annette and all her learnable rally abilities is one of the best options you have in buffing your allies.


FE3H Character Portrait - Ignatz.png

Ignatz is the runner-up rally user for your team. He learns Rally Speed early on, which can help your units avoid getting doubled by enemies. While Annette has more in terms of Rallies, Ignatz makes up for it with debuffing abilities. He learns useful debuffs like Ward Arrow and Seal Strength (from budding talent). This makes Ignatz not rely heavily on EXP (which is extremely scarce) and still be useful.


FE3H Character Portrait - Lysithea.png

Lysithea is an extreme powerhouse and that doesn't change in Maddening. She will have trouble reaching her one-shotting nature in Maddening, but is still achievable if the player funnels EXP to her. She can also easily max out her abilities with her passive Mastermind, allowing her to learn her best Dark Magic. Her magic also provides debuffs at the start of the game, making her useful even without her massive damage.


FE3H Character Portrait - Mercedes.png

Healers are a must in Maddening, and the best healer is of course, a recommended character to get. Mercedes has the best healing capabilities with Fortify and Physic. You can also level her axe and armored skill to reclass her into an Armored Knight making her tanky for both physical and magical attacks. This makes Mercedes an unkillable healer.


FE3H Character Portrait - Felix.png

A good Speed, Dexterity, and Strength growth coupled with a Relic that makes him extremely durable. Felix is one of the best frontline units you can have in the game. He dodges attacks and can also take some damage due to his durability, and he can also kill enemy units easily with his insane amount of damage. This can be furthered by equipping him with Relics like the Thunderbrand (which can be easily obtained by recruiting Catherine).

His passive also makes him a natural user of Battalion Vantage, allowing him to heavily damage or even avoid damage by damaging/killing enemies before they even lay their hands on him. And if you do so wish, you can also turn him to a bow user, which is extremely valuable in Maddening due to his proficiency with the bow.


FE3H Character Portrait - Sylvain.png

The easiest male to recruit in the game. Sylvain gives you a free Lance of Ruin early in the game. He also learns great combat skills like Swift Strikes, making him a decent frontline unit. And if you simply wish to get his relic, turning him to an armored class and making him an Adjutant would always be helpful, due to the added survivability an armored adjutant can give.


FE3H Character Portrait - Petra.png

The speediest girl. Avoiding enemy attacks and getting enough speed to stop enemies from doubling you is a godsend in Maddening Mode. Petra makes this as easy as pie due to her insane speed growth. Turning her to a Thief/Assassin also means that you won't need to spend any money on Keys, saving you some cash (which is also scarce in Maddening), but do try to make her stay a while in the Brigand class to learn Death Blow.

This might also be suboptimal, but having her learn the Dancer Class can also increase her dodge even further. This can make her a great dodge-counter unit. Adding Wrath by mastering the warrior class makes her a counter-attack killing machine.


FE3H Character Portrait - Linhardt.png

Mercedes is the benefacto healer in Black Eagles. Linhardt is a good recruit because he can learn the warp spell. He provides an insane amount of utility which can be even furthered if you equip him with a utility gambit (Stride, Impregnable Wall, Sacred Shield). Linhardt is a strong single-target healer as well so you can just send everyone off to fight while he stays in the sidelines using physic to keep everyone healthy.


FE3H Character Portrait - Catherine.png

A great late recruit unit that bears the Thunderbrand. She will always be a great recruit, if you choose to include her in your main roster. She's a powerful, albeit, slow unit that packs a punch while also being durable. If you do not include her, you can at least, take her relic and equip it to your other sword units.


FE3H Character Portrait - Bernadetta.png

Bow users are extremely good in Maddening, so Bernadetta being a good unit is a no-brainer. She has decent dex growth, and if you class her to a strength unit before putting her to her bow class growth, she becomes an insane ranged damage dealer.

Ferdinand Von Aegir

FE3H Character Portrait - Ferdinand.png

Access to Swift Strikes coupled with a decent defense stat and an ability that increases his avoid. Ferdinand is the picture-perfect vision of a dodge tank unit (but Ingrid does it better). In Maddening, however, dodge tanking is harder to do due to the enemy's high hit rates. Ferdinand is still a good character to get by turning him to into a wyvern lord.


FE3H Character Portrait - Ingrid.png

As mentioned above, Ingrid is the best dodge tanker. She has insane speed growth, but lower strength growth. Reclassing her to a strength-based class then switching her back to a flying class will work wonders. She can be recruited late, so she can start on her default pegasus knight while avoiding the extreme EXP penalties, so you can focus on leveling other units.


FE3H Character Portrait - Shamir.png

Shamir is an excellent bow user, and we all know that bow abilities are precious in maddening. She also comes early as a sniper class faster than the other units, which is an advantage unique to her.

FE3H Related Links

Beginner Guides

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Stats and Game Mechanics
What Does Luck Do? What Does Dexterity Do?
What Does Weight Do? What Does Charm Do?
What Does Authority Do? What Does Speed Do?
The Attack Speed Formula How To Learn and Equip Abilities
Character Guides
Recruitment Guide Lecture Guide | How to Instruct
Classes That Can Use Magic List of Unique Classes
Best Classes for Each Character What Happens When Someone Dies?
How to Change Outfits -
Battle Guides
How to Beat Demonic Beasts How to Beat the Death Knight
Gambit Guide Training Weapons or Iron Weapons?
How Do Linked Attacks Work? How to Use Divine Pulse
How to Use Auto Battle List of Terrains
How to Open Doors and Chests -
Building your Army
Best Characters to Recruit What Are Adjutants?
How to Repair Weapons Are Rusted Weapons Worth Forging?
Where to Get Umbral Steel What is Renown?
Where to Get Advanced Seals -
Maddening Guides
Maddening Tips and Guide Best Characters for Maddening
What Carries Over To New Game Plus? How Long Does It Take To Beat FE3H?
Difficulty Levels and Differences Is There a Weapon Triangle?
Which House Should You Pick? -

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