With Ayaka Banner coming up in just 3 days, I wanted to make a final guide extension to the wonderful Ayaka Team Comps Doc with some further theorycrafting.
Starting with what we already know – Most of Ayaka’s damage is Cryo, due to her infusion. Her attack chain means melt is tricky to make work – her modifiers are smaller on each attack, so you’d have to resort to reverse melt. While this can theoretically work for compositions like the national team, I’d like to focus on freeze Ayaka, which I think showcases her advantages the best.
Ferocious looking. The first hero from the Japanese oriented region has quite a high skill ceiling.
Ayaka: The basic pros & cons.
So, what are Ayaka’s advantages?
Her staminaless dash gives her cryo infusion on demand.
This cheats Cryo’s main weakness with the Internal Cooldown due to how easy she can apply it, allowing her to benefit from the best reactions in the game like Frozen with a consistent Cryo application. Think of XQ’s Hydro swords ( more on this later )
The best charged basic attack damage
She beats other sword users by a small but meaningful margin that adds up, especially if she meaningfully remains on the field, which she does in most Freeze comps.
Access to incredible buffs
30% attack damage after using her E
18% cryo damage after dashing
(In freeze teams) Essentially 40% Extra crit rates from her artifact set
(With cryo resonance) Even more crit. The fact she has so much in common with Ganyu should indicate how strong she can be.
Even more of this ( e.g 298% for one attack per 10 sec ) on constellations if you whale.
HUGE scaling on the ult.
Having that said, she has her disadvantages.
In order to address these disadvantages, her team needs to offer
Crucial teambuilding aspects
With just a little bit of enabling, she will likely pull off incredible things.
With this out of the way, let’s talk about
Ayaka’s Team Synergies in-depth:
This is the part I’d like to expand on from the doc. The doc covers artifacts and weapons great, as well as the basics I summarized above – in this part I want to share some advanced tidbits of knowledge that might shed light on certain Ayaka teams, substitutes, synergies etc; To explain them I’ll use the team structure the doc suggests summarizing it’s notes, but adding information on each possible Ayaka teammate and giving practical team core examples to hopefully bring useful information to light.
All Ayaka freeze teams need a consistent hydro application to keep up with her, so the first step to building a good Ayaka freeze team is to pick your favorite water hose from the ones currently available.
They’re all cool looking, but some work better than others!
Mona Vs. XQ:
The battle of the ages. Both of them are great; The bit I’d like to add to this guide is playstyle. If you like to play aware and minmax, Mona wins. If you need consistent application or like to lay back, XQ wins.
The reason lies within their Hydro application.
XQ’s swords are able to follow Ayaka around and keep freezing whatever single target she faces, dealing some light damage. Because of this XQ enhances Ayaka’s single target damage and easily applies hydro to whatever she hits; The consistent application enables certain teammates. His E self-applies wet, which can be tricky.
Mona’s bubble and E Apply Hydro AOE. This means Ayaka can quickly freeze anything around her while benefitting from Mona’s Bubble Freeze Manipulation ( And mona’s base damage, or TToDS, depending on the mona build ) to deal significantly higher burst damage. While the damage potential is meaningfully higher here, You can only keep freezing what Mona initially hit, and anything you missed will have some time between the Bubble CD ( And until you regain mona’s Q ) and mona’s E to attack you back.
XQ keeps hydro up, allowing more flexibility, control and ease of play, while Mona has a higher damage ceiling putting Ayaka’s numbers the highest they can be.
Barbara’s main claim to fame is her healing. Her E helps Ayaka freeze, however she deals zero (0) damage and she self-inflicts consistent Wet on her E. Her cryo application is decent but not too good, and her Q takes up a lot of energy; I’d only resort to Barbara if you have no other option, or if you have no other means of healing.
He’s hydro, he can work, but he also takes a lot of time on the field, meaning his application with Ayaka is limited.
Mona vs. XQ Aftermath – The Divergence.
Picking your water hose of choice first imposes some limitations on where you go from there. If you chose Mona, you’ll want to avoid breaking her bubble, meaning greatsword users like Chongyun become less attractive. Your choice of healers is also more tricky – while you can theoretically pick someone like Noelle, her shattering the bubble can really hurt your damage numbers, which is what Mona is all about.
If you picked XQ, your hydro application is good enough for you to utilize heroes like Bennet, since you can move around his pyro application and keep up freezing.
Regardless, your other teammates should probably include a healer, some neat buffs and a battery to help Ayaka burst in time.
A battle for the ages. Despite this image, the lore has it he arguably has his life together much more than she does.
(Cryo) Batteries Ft. Venti Rant
I would love for this section to just say “Cryo batteries”, but the truth of the matter is Venti is such a broken support I can’t afford to put that there. If you have venti you can probably get away with pretty much anything – not running a cryo battery, not running a healer, even playing on mobile ( eyyyyy ).
Regardless, it is optimal for you to run a Cryo battery. Energy Regeneration Giving Ayaka more room to burst is crucial for her DPS – so while theoretically you can avoid one of these if you have venti, you should probably consider picking one of these.
Diona ( And Qiqi )
Diona is a healing cryo bow user that offers a stamina offsetting shield with flexible particle regenration and debuffs. The sheer flexibility she brings to the table filling so many roles is incredible, being the missing piece of so many of the theorycrafted Ayaka freeze comps.
Why bother mentioning anyone else then?
Because while she’s a jack of all trades, she’s also a master of none. Her energy generation is great, but her own burst costs 80. Her healing is decent, but there’s better out there; and while she can hit decent numbers, her damage is on the lower end in this category.
If you know you need something specific out of your battery, there might be another one you’ll opt in for – but if you need a good flexible cryo battery, Diona’s everything you’ll ever ask for and more.
While Diona does this at 4 stars, there’s something to be said for Qiqi.
While she is currently not trivial to fit, she can work in these comps. She’s everything a cryo battery wishes it could be, except the battery – Cryo resonance, great heals, decent off field ability and possibly even damage – but with a long CD on her elemental skill and missing base particle regeneration she leaves quite some to be desired. Ayaka does make up for her inconsistent cryo application, but the only core with enough regeneration to have Qiqi in would be Ayaka Venti, and while she could fit in these comps, she’s still not obvious to work with.
Kaeya, Rosaria and Chongyun.
The damage oriented cryo batteries. Kaeya brings more energy, Rosaria brings more crit rate, so there’s flexibility between the two.
Kaeya might be the most underrated battery there is right now. Great base damage with what’s basically a cryo Xiangling’s ult on low CD. His E quickly generates particles with great passives in his skills and constellations. Note especially his C2 and C6, increasing the ult uptime and energy regeneration respectively. While his AoE is smaller than Rosaria, it moves, making Ayaka XQ Kaeya one of the most flexible freeze comps when it comes to movements during battle.
If Kaeya brings consistent damage, flexibility in movement and slightly more Energy, Rosaria brings forward A large AoE, more burst damage and utility. Her C2 and C4 are the most meaningful, allowing her to get the most out of her Q. Her teleportation has high skill ceiling if used correctly, and can pull off great stunts – although good usage of her ultimate is what makes or breaks a good Rosaria player. Keeping the right enemies within can be very rewarding in terms of damage, and Ayaka’s dashing playstyle can synergize quite well with that. Rosaria’s Crit rating buff makes Ayaka’s crits even more consistent, which is great for her DPS, although even with her constellations she generates slightly less energy than Kaeya does. One interesting Rosaria core is Ayaka Rosaria Jean – Jean Merges her ult with Rosaria instantly swirling Cryo, but her ult pushes the enemies out, meaning you’ll need to play your cards well with Ayaka or Jean’s E to really benefit from this. Jean’s E can also toss enemies into Rosaria’s burst, allowing you to turn badly positioned engages around swiftly.
Last but not least for this bullet, Chongyun. If Rosaria’s about AOE side-dps, he’s all about support – his field gives CDR, he gives Cryo res shred, Attack speed, he can even keep up full uptime on noblesse. His Q is instant, but his shattering greatsword makes him a little tricker to play than the rest. He both shatters bubbles and frozen enemies making XQ almost a must for him to get enemies back frozen. When running him for battery his damage is on the lower end, but you should definitely consider him especially if you have access to his C2.
Ganyu (& Eula)
Using main carry cryos with Ayaka changes the dynamics – why use Ayaka as the main instead of ganyu? – but if you do, you can perhaps alternate the carry and use Ayaka is a quickswap in these freeze teams, allowing Eula or Ganyu to be on the field for the majority of the time. I’d note in that case you probably need another good battery, like Venti.
Yeah, you’ll be fine if you use Ganyu, Ayaka and Venti. Maybe add in Zhongli – why bother freezing when you can’t die.
*Whale sounds in the distant background*
On a serious note, Many ganyu oriented sets can use Ayaka instead, like the Morgana set.
These fill in your last slot. While you can just pick another Cryo battery or another hydro applier ( That’s actually better than people think ), other characters have a lot to offer.
Healing, Extra damage from an Anemo VV, Shred, There’s a lot of goodness to pick here. This is my go at a comprehensive but concise list, explaining the ups and downs of each of these characters.
If you have him, he’s probably what you’re looking for. The base VV application, the grouping of enemies for Ayaka, the battery, the shred – just try him. Not much else to say here.
Simply the best. Smug looking. Not much else to say.
Jean is REALLY interesting, and her synergy with Ayaka takes some real understanding to pull off. Optimally, she’ll be able to heal, Swirl VV cryo and side DPS – but she also pushes enemies away. I’d like to offer here the ultimate solution to using Jean in Ayaka cores.
Unlike Diona, Jean’s healing doesn’t need heavy investment to prove itself. C2 makes it easier to pull off, but if your batteries are regenerating enough energy you can build damage on your jean, and Jean’s damage scales much better than people think.
I’ve heard many complain about how swirling Cryo with jean is impossible with her Q since it pushes mobs away – what people forget is that with Ayaka and Jean’s DPS you don’t need to swirl cryo on her Q to kill small mobs.
To use Jean correctly in Ayaka freeze comps you need to master her E – utilizing the fall damage when possible, Swirling Cryo on big mobs when needed, or pushing smaller mobs to reposition the fight as mentioned earlier.
That leaves her Q to either AOE damage clear, heal, or do some combination of both – utilizing it this way and positioning correctly can turn Jean into an incredible flexible support for these compositions.
Another great character people overlook. While he does shatter when he jumps, he also swirls, meaning he can regain the control swiftly. Much like venti, holding his E groups enemies for Ayaka. He’s usually picked over Sucrose because Ayaka herself doesn’t need much EM in freeze comps, but due to his lack of healing, his core is usually pretty static – especially as a side carry, he enjoys Diona more than anyone else.
Sucrose is used a little differently in Ayaka comps than in everywhere else.
Her CC is there like it always was, but while usually she provides EM, that EM is useless in freeze comps, leading her to lean into her second trick of the trade: Damage.
Building attack on sucrose can actually makes her quite a decent sub DPS. She can do well just supporting by with TToDS, but once you get around to equipping her with a meaningful weapon she can actually land great numbers on grouped enemies, preparing them to get shredded.
The second charge on her E is more important here than it is in EM related comps, since keeping the enemies grouped is very meaningful for Ayaka.
Traveler is anemo, they shred with VV. When you can, aim the Q into areas Ayaka can catch – walls or pillars, since every second of grouped shredded DPS matters to her. As for traveler’s E – refer to the section about Jean, and use it mindfully to position enemies.
They can work together. They also look wholesome.
He offer shielding and geo damage to ayaka – This works as an insurance, even when the freezes do not.
This actually gives you a lot of flexibility to patch up other characters; The shield means you need less healing so it empowers Diona, and if you are shielded you can afford to take more damage meaning missing Mona’s hydro comes at a lower price, making up for a solid Ayaka – Diona – Mona – Zhongli core.
While shattering can be annoying, It’s something you can work around for more raw damage. The way Mona and Zhongli’s buffs add up will feature some great numbers and protection, to patch the lack of control.
This playstyle enables one more interesting core to test. It will be very niche at best, but I want to mention it here.
Traveler(Geo) / Albedo
With these guys. They can battery and buff. It’s niche, but it works well with another geo, and it’s something I wanted to mention for testing at the very least.
An example of such a core would be Ayaka – Mona – Zhongli – Traveler.
As mentioned earlier, he works best with XQ to maintain Hydro. Ayaka doesn’t usually want to proc melt with him because of the scalings, making him trickier than the rest, but the attack buff can be pretty incredible in the right team.
This last niche one utilizes how Ayaka likes to land basics. While the elemental reaction with Ayaka only provides marginal gains due to her primary Cryo damage, Fischl can generate quite some particles even when accounting for the element mismatch.
Paired with her damage and how currently accessible she is, she can be a viable support substitute for more earlygame players. An example f2p core for her would be Ayaka, Diona, XQ, Fischl.
I hope this is useful for you, Definitely check the doc and Ayakamains discord for the basic details as well as artifacts and weapons, and let me know what you think below!
Thank you for reading through!