Banner Saga Guide: Skills for Kills Part One

Need any help with the Human abilities in Banner saga? Check out this detailed guide for all their abilities and uses.

Abilities can really turn the tide of battle in Banner Saga. Some character types have passive abilities that apply to every class of that type. There are also some unique abilities between each class of the same type. Everyone has two things in common. There are three ranks of each ability, and they needs kills to upgrade their abilities.

Recommended Videos

If you are looking for a basic combat guide, check out my Banner Saga Combat Guide. If you want more of an explanation on units, then visit my Banner Saga Unit Guide.

This guide will cover class abilities including:

  • Explanation of each human ability
  • Best use of each ability

Banner Saga Human Abilities

Each character type, archer, melee, and mender, have different classes. Each class has their own abilities.  Let’s start with the archers.


All archers have the passive ability, Puncture. This ability does more strength damage if the user does not move that turn and based on how much armor the target has lost. For every two points of armor the target has lost, the archer will gain one point of strength, as long as it doesn’t move.

The Eagle Eye class has the active ability, Thread the Needle. This ability can hit a target up to five spaces away and will hit ever unit in a straight line on its way to the target. It does normal strength damage, plus up to three armor damage, depending on the rank, and puncture damage if standing still. This is a great ability if you can get enemies to line up, but be careful, friendly units will also be hit if in the line of fire.

Skystrikers have the Rain of Arrows ability. This ability shoots up to three arrows on an unoccupied tile. Any enemy that step on the target will take normal strength damage and get stunned, ending their turn. Each rank adds an extra arrow and strength damage to the ability. This ability is a great defensive tool. You can protect allies by placing traps near them, to stop enemies that target them.

Bowmasters have the Bird of Prey ability. This ability increases the range the user can shoot and gives it a 100% chance to hit. The ability initially gives the user two more tiles of range, each rank adds an extra tile. This works with puncture, so it is a good way to use that passive ability on enemies that are otherwise out of reach.