Understanding how Heroes’ Active and Passive skills work
What are Troop Hero skills?
Troop Hero skills are the bonuses that your heroes provide to your troops, and they can be found on the Troop Skill tab when selecting a Hero from the Hero button on the menu at the bottom of your screen.
How do they work?
As I’ve said, each hero has a Troop Skill tab with bonuses that apply to your troops. However, while some skills are active skills, others are passive.
The definition of an Active skill would be a skill that only applies to your troops if that hero is in your troop formation. Meyers is an example of a Hero that has an Active skill bonus. If he is in your formation, your Troops get a bonus to their HP, DEF, and ATK.
You are allowed to put up to five heroes in your troop formation, and each one has a different affect on your troops.
You can see in the above example on the left that when Zephyr is in my troop formation my Fighters skill bonuses are at 96% ATK, 96% DEF, and 96% HP. That is because right now Zephyr is adding an additional 32% to each of those skill bonuses as an Active skill.
So in the above example on the right I have switched out Zephyr for Phoenix and you will notice that my Fighters ATK, DEF, and HP all go down, however my Shooter ATK, DEF, and HP all go up. This is because at my current Phoenix enhancement level she adds an additional 32% ATK, 32% DEF, and 32% HP as an Active skill to my troops. This is why people will often tell ask you what your main troop type is: Fighters, Shooters, or Riders. Different formations apply different skill bonuses and its best to optimize your troops for one, over say two or three.
(Mixing them is an inefficient method of doing damage, and you should choose one and stick to that.)
If we go back and look at Levina, she is an example of a Hero whose Troop skills are Passive. That means that whether Levina is in your Troop formation or not, her skill bonuses always apply to your Troops. That is why it is important to get her to at least level 131 so that her skills apply to all troops passively. You can see in my example, I have not yet evolved her to level 131 so for the time being she is not adding her Shooter ATK passive skill bonus to my troops.
Heroes can have a Troop type just like your Troops, a Hero can be a Fighter like Meyers, or a Shooter like Phoenix, or a Rider like Levina. However, there is also another type of Hero and they are of the type Economy. Economy Heroes are not meant to be used in your Troop formation at all, this is because they provide zero Active skill bonuses to your Troops. Instead, Heroes of the Economy type are always considered Passive which means that they always provide their Troop skill bonuses to your Troops, in the same way Levina does as a Rider type Hero.
Eve is a good example of an Economy type hero, when she is evolved to level 131 her Troop skill bonuses add Gathering Speed bonuses, Infirmary Healing Speed bonuses, and Troop Size bonuses. All Economy type heroes are passive so their is no disadvantage in leveling them, and enhancing them to their maximum.
Some Heroes are even more special than even the Five Star heroes we tend to add to our Troop formations. And these Heroes tend to be Two and Three Star heroes. Yes, you read that right, some lower Star heroes are of a Special type. They are both one of the three Troop type heroes: Fighter, Shooter, or Rider, but they are also an Economy type hero, and just like a normal Economy type hero their Economy Troop skill has a Passive skill bonus.
In the above example on the left I have chosen to showcase Barbie. Barbie is a Three Star Hero who is a Fighter, but if you look at her Troop skills only two of them are of the Active type bonus, her first skill is in fact of the Economy type. You can verify this by clicking on the skill. In the above example on the right you can see that under the various enhancement level information, you can see that it says, “Own the hero to activate this effect.” That means that just owning the hero, is enough to activate it, making it entirely a Passive skill bonus.
For this reason alone, it is important to Enhance her to her maximum. You should do this with all heroes that have an Economy type skill that is activated just by owning the hero. While she may not be strong in a battle, the bonus that she provides will help you in gathering food.