The Dark side is stuck in what I call a very embarrsing situation: You can’t say they are bad, but they are just ALWAYS falling short by just a little bit.
Take Vader as an example: Tanky, meaty, Really fast, Great damage.
EP: Great damage, shock, Good lead, squishy, aoe stuns.
The thing is, dare I say everytime a new dark side toon is released they are simply not counters to the meta, while LS toons are a more direct/ easier path to whatever the meta is.
One of the MOST FATAL flaw I think most dark side team has is a lack of an IMMEDIATE threat. The whole dark side is too all rounded. Damage is alright, speed is alright, tanks are alright, toughness are alright. There’s just nothing that stands out and make me say oh that’s what makes a dark side team strong etc etc.
As such, when you face off against a dark side team, you can have so many approaches and freedom and room for mistakes, that it’s just better off not to play them.
Here’s a few example: JRT. Rey and bb8 are your biggest threat here. You can tell how the enemy team works. They work by building up towards illuminated destiny, by countering and lowering cooldowns. You counter the team by shutting these two down. Room for error is close to none. You make one or two mistakes, you are done for.
CLS/GK/ Barriss team: obviously barriss is the key. They counter the burst crit damage from rebels back when they were meta and you counter by taking out barriss. CLS helps with damage as well as gives counter. Counter with daze, stuns and take out CLS/ barriss. Room for error is alright, you can make a few mistakes and you can still make it.
Nightsister: old daka and MT with their whole tm gain and ventress rampage. Acolyte aside, a careful approach is needed to defeat them. They are a very balanced/ well designed if not the best balanced teams imho. Good on offense, good on defense, and with the right team you can defeat them. Not especially strong against a specific team, but in general a very top tier nonetheless. Room for error is optimal, not too high or low.
Darkside/ Empire: This is where everything falls apart. What, if I may ask, is holding the DS team together? EP stuns sure, vader good damage sure, but I can take out thrawn/ EP/ Vader/ basically ANY toon out of the enemy team, and I can still secure a win. Sure, make a couple of mistakes, maybaps lose my r2, zarriss or gk, Whatever, i can beat the team with rey/bb8 or han/ CLS remaining. The fact that the room for error is so HUGE, it’s basically a gaping hole that begs to be attacked in arena. All I have to do is go in with a team, hope EP doesnt land a stun, if he does, maybe vader wont culling blade a vital toon, maybe thrawn will cleanse the wrong person instead of shoretrooper, maybe... there are just too much room for mistakes on the empire, too many opportunities and approaches for the attacker to take on.
So if you ask me, what does the DS/ empire need? I would say it’s not a specific toon or tank or cleanser or whatever. What it needs is a toon that can SHAPE the faction into something concrete, something more predictable, a squad that has a clear approach when attacking and defending, that makes the squad into a puzzle that requires a specific attacking approach to defeat. If a jedi rey team is an armour with 2 to 3 weaknesses in it, then the empire at the moment is a tattered t shirt with 10 or even 20 holes and openings on it.