There was a time, over a year ago now, when you could take your arena team into Galactic War and run it wire-to-wire without losing a character and complete your War every time. This was changed quite a while ago, but the mentality has stuck and even now you still see people trying to brute force their way with a single team. If that team is Resistance, then congratulations enjoy your nearly constant finishes and rewards, don't bother reading any further. If you're wondering why Resistance is so good, scroll on down to the bottom, that's in there.
But a lot of people have trouble, and it boils down to one common theme: Too much emphasis placed on your Arena team.
All the guides say to get a certain set of characters, invest heavily in them, max them out, and take 1st in Arena every day. That's fine, whatever, go ahead and do that. But if you do, don't go to General Discussion and then complain because you get wiped on node 9 and Galactic War is biased against you. Let's dispel a persistent myth first.
Galactic War opponents are not based on your arena rankings or the highest power you've recently defeated or anything of the sort. According to this developer post
the difficulty of your nodes is based on the combined power of the five highest-powered characters on your roster. This post
empirically determined power percentages in each node, and while a developer stated that it isn't exact
, it's broadly correct. What this means is that every time you give one of your five highest characters a piece of gear or add a star or upgrade their mods, you're making your Galactic War a tiny bit more difficult for yourself.
That's okay. You have several advantages that you can use to win against teams that grossly outclass you. I'll get into those in a minute, but for now the philosophical answer: The purpose of Galactic War is to reward you for roster depth. Because the top 5 characters are the ones that count towards GW difficulty, you can do anything you want to characters 6 through 600 and it won't increase the difficulty of your war, in fact it will do the opposite and give you even more advantages. If your top 5 get wildly unbalanced in relation to the rest of your roster, you will start to suffer. So tip number one is:
This doesn't mean every team has to be 7* gear 11. My Resistance Trooper and Pilot are still only gear 8 and I clear nearly every Galactic War. But the more teams you have, the more answers you have to problems you might face. If your team is crit-oriented, and most guides will gently usher you in that direction, you will have trouble with General Kenobi and zeta Barriss Offee teams, who punish you for critting against them. You can easily get around this by having Darth Nihilus lead some Sith with Offense mods, who won't crit, and will completely negate the Barriss/Kenobi synergy. Furthermore, the more teams you have the more you can...
- ABUSE TURN METER ADVANTAGE.
Your turn meter carries over between nodes. This is your biggest advantage. Even the slowest character will probably go first if they start a battle with 90% turn meter. The problem people face when they try to brute force one team from node 1 through node 12 is that eventually that team dies, and the team they bring in to replace it starts with 0 turn meter. Because most people start with their most powerful team, not only are they starting from scratch when it comes to turn meter, they're doing it with a team that is strictly weaker--less damage, slower, less health--and will get mutilated by the other team. The first five nodes are the easiest, you should try to use a new team each time. This way you have five teams that have turn meter advantage going into the second half of your War.
You can monkey with this further by using half-teams. For example, I have a team that's zeta Darth Vader, Darth Sidious, Emperor Palpatine, Captain Phasma, and Stormtrooper Han. The idea of that team is to blast everything with AoE damage and DoTs, use Phasma and Han to fill my turn meter, and just alpha strike before dying. Instead of using this on node 1, I use Admiral Ackbar as my leader and Lando, along with the three sith. Lando AoEs, Ackbar uses Tactical Genius, Lando AoEs twice. The three sith only use basic attacks. Because of how much weaker the characters on node 1 are, Lando's third AoE should finish everyone off and leave the sith with nearly full meters. Do this again in node 2, but remove the sith and replace them with Phasma and Han, and a fifth character of your choice (or keep one sith with a low meter and hope for a better result) and fill their bars. That way when you deploy the full team, they will all have high turn meter before they are murdered.
One of the biggest advantages in your favor is that you can retreat on your turn and start the battle over from the beginning. The RNG seed will remain the same for each character, meaning that if you make the same decisions every time, the same outcomes will occur--the same attacks will crit, or miss, and the AI will target the same characters. Once you understand the nuances of the RNG you can win an awful lot of battles that you shouldn't. Did your Rey miss with Leverage? Retreat, use a regular attack and it might hit, use Leverage next time. Did Biggs and Wedge call Aayla to assist, who then called Qui Gon Jin with her basic and all four attacks gibbed someone? Retreat, target someone else with a different attack, it might change how the AI reacts.
The most subtle nuance of the RNG is that you can change things by partly autobattling. If Rey misses with Leverage when you tap that attack, retreat, do everything the same, then quickly tap autobattle twice to turn it on and off. Rey will use Leverage, but the seed will have changed and you may hit this time. (A semi-explanation of why this works can be found here
.) The important thing to keep in mind is that the AI prioritizes certain attacks over others, and sometimes those attacks don't make sense. For example, Resistance Trooper's basic attack is the backbone of a Resistance team but the AI will always use his special instead. You can mitigate this by toggling on "Basic Attacks Only" in the autobattle options menu, but be sure to turn it off immediately after--I've forgotten in the past, then wondered why I was losing ship battles only to notice that they were only using basics still...
I've mentioned Resistance a couple times, and for good reason: Once you've upgraded Finn's leader ability to Zeta level, Galactic War is trivialized. With him as leader, any time an enemy takes damage from Expose, all your Resistance characters gain 35% turn meter and cooldowns are reduced by 1. He has a special that exposes (and stuns), Trooper's basic exposes reliably, Pilot's special exposes, and Poe's taunt will AoE expose. Trooper will also gain 55% turn meter any time someone becomes exposed, meaning Poe will taunt, Trooper goes, hits someone with expose, the rest of your team goes, Poe's taunt is off cooldown by his next turn and you can just repeat this loop. If you hit a spat of unlucky expose rolls, you can always retreat, retry, and abuse autobattle to try and get a different, better seed.
This team will regularly win against teams that grossly overpower it, but it isn't invincible. There are teams that counter it, which is why you should always, always, always have multiple teams and ensure they have a decent starting turn meter of their own. Characters that gain turn meter when something happens (Rex (leader) when an ally is crit, Thrawn and Yoda when resisting a debuff, Barriss and Royal Guard when you attack someone else, Anakin when you kill or take someone down to 50%, Darth Sidious when you kill someone), characters that taunt when it isn't their turn and prevent you from attacking exposed enemies (Royal Guard, Shoretrooper, Baze), characters that can throw up Tenacity Up (Chirrut, Rex), or enemies that can counterattack (too many to list) all have the potential to give you a hard time. Zeta Qui Gon Jin can be frustrating, as can Zeta Maul-led sith teams with Kylo Ren as the one non-sith. So there are definitely obstacles to overcome with this team, but they more than make up for it by plowing through the rest of the nodes.
Hopefully these make it easier for you. The big bullet points:
- Build the middle of your roster and use multiple teams.
- Abuse turn meter advantage.
- Abuse retreat and change up that RNG in your favor.
- When all else fails, zeta Finn (almost) never fails.
Ceterum censeo Patientia esse meliat.