Which Characters need a Balance of the Force?

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We recently published a post explaining why we’re hopeful for the future of Destiny. One of our arguments was that there is a huge legacy of cards to enjoy.

However, if we’re going to be able to take advantage of the legacy of characters in Destiny, many of them need balancing to make them competitive.

If FFG don’t do it, I believe this should be the first move by the continuing committee as it has the potential to dramatically open up the game without the need for more cards. One power of a community team is they have ability to be nimble, so they should not be afraid of making bold balances, as these can be rapidly corrected if a problem arises.

But which characters need balancing? In typical echobase fashion, I’m going to analyse some data to answer that question.

Here’s the data I’ve got:

  1. I have every character lineup from every Top Cut in the entire 19/20 Prime Season. This means I’m only looking at characters in Standard (Legacies onwards) and during the Spark of Hope meta. This adds up to 620 decks, containing 1527 characters.
  2. I have a list of every card in standard thanks to swdestinydb.

By comparing the two, I can find out every character that’s never featured in any Top Cut (in the current meta). I think this is a good indication that the character is currently over-costed.

There are 143 characters in standard (not including Covert Missions). Of these 143 characters, 62 have never been in any 19/20 Prime Top Cuts. That’s 43% of characters.

For completeness, here is the full list of all 62 absent characters, sorted from worst value (1 = probably needs balancing) to best value (62 = might not need balancing) using the programme I wrote to calculate a very rough value for all characters:

setcharactersetcharacter
1CONVChewbacca32AoNOuter Rim Outlaw
2AtGSavage Opress33LEGBoba Fett
3TPGRey34AoNFenn Rau
4LEGBattle Droid35SoHWicket
5LEGWedge Antilles36LEGJedha Partisan
6LEGHondo Ohnaka37CONVAhsoka Tano
7WotFBoss Nass38CONVMaz Kanata
8LEGTarkin39SoHAmilyn Holdo
9WotFCount Dooku40WotFRex
10WotFFifth Brother41RIVJawa Scavenger
11WotFLuke Skywalker42WotFExecutioner
12CONVAsajj Ventress43WotFEzra Bridger
13LEGHan Solo44AoNClawdite Shapeshifter
14AtGBarriss Offee45RIVAnakin Skywalker
15CONVDengar46AtGLuce
16AtGNightbrother47LEGVeteran Stormtrooper
17SoHOld Daka48AtGVal
18AtG“Mauler” Mithel49AtGL3-37
19LEGLuke Skywalker50CONVEnfys Nest
20AtGQui-Gon Jinn51LEGJedi Temple Guard
21LEGJar Jar Binks52LEGRose
22RIVKetsu Onyo53AtGForce Mystic
23CONVK-2SO54WotFJabba The Hutt
24LEGPalpatine55LEGFinn
25WotFForce Sensitive Outcast56CONVSly Moore
26CONVEzra Bridger57WotFSebulba
27WotFJedi Sentinel58LEGDark Advisor
28AtGSuper Battle Droid59SoHDark Mystic
29CONVObi-Wan Kenobi60LEGBib Fortuna
30CONVKes Dameron61CONVVigilant Jedi
31SoHNightsister Zombie62SoHYoungling
All the characters which are entirely absent from Top Cuts in the Spark of Hope meta

Some of these characters were a surprise to me. A number of them feel very fairly costed, but nevertheless none of them have made any Top Cuts during this long Prime Season.

I believe many of these characters need balancing, or they’ll sit forever in your binder. The characters at the top of my list aren’t necessarily the first that need balancing: my points value system sure isn’t perfect: a few did see play pre-Spark of Hope, such as Rey, Hondo, Tarkin and Dooku, plus characters like Chewbacca will be stronger once Covert Missions lands.

Nevertheless, in the current meta they just don’t seem to be able to cut it, and might need a little help or else we may never see them again:

For comparison, R2-D2 is our most popular character featuring in 118 Top Cut decks (19% of all 620 decks) followed by C-3PO on 112.

Taking the sting out of the most powerful decks in the meta is the other way to open it up to new decks. I’ve already written that I think hero droids urgently need another nerf as they continue to be the only deck to consistently outperform their already high representation. Click the image below for that article

Following close behind R2 and 3PO, our next most popular characters are: Sentinel Messenger: 95 appearances, ReyLo: 93, Chopper: 90, General Grievous (Convergence): 75, Palpatine (Convergence): 67, Aphra: 48, Watto: 44 and Mandalorian Commando: 41.

I don’t think any of these characters need an errata or points balance immediately, though these are ones to watch.


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