This post was originally a reply to another thread (https://forums.galaxy-of-heroes.starwars.ea.com/discussion/7727/help-for-arena-character-line-up-please)
. But after writing so many words, I feel that it would be much more beneficial to the wider community if I post it as a guide. I am not a native English speaker so pls pardon me if any of my writings is problematic.
The first question you need to ask yourself, before making any decisions on the line-ups, is that how many healers do you want for your pvp team, and how you would like to balance your pve and pvp gaming. As far as I have experienced as a lvl65 f2p (not even the 5$ Dooku!) player with nearly 40 toons, GW rewards are the easiest to get if you have around 15 nearly top geared (at your lvl) toons, including 3-4 healers. I have been able to clear 50 GW so far, and was rewarded 6* phasma, poggle, and lumi. I am now working on Resistant Pilot, a huge dps who can benefit from phasma's leadership. My pvp team is made up the those three folks, 5* Sid and 4* Poe, currently ranking 200-500 in my soft-launch server, which entertains ppl like Kylven, Fudgement and SeroZero. If your server is like mine, that is, when I was at lvl 1, the top 100 were already lvl 60 7* folks, I am almost certain my strategy would work best.
On the other hand, if you are in a server that is not as unbalanced, you could try to work your way through the pvp arena. The only problem is, people who spend money will almost always occupy the top 10 ranks. Even if you made your way up there, your server may be merged into another, which would significantly influence your ranks again.
Therefore, if you are not a big spender, I suggest focusing on the GW instead of pvp. If you are in a new server, it should not be too difficult to rank into the top 500, which gives you 700 shards per day! Use the rest of your energy on getting all of the 4 non-cash healers, i, e, JC, Talia, Daka and Lumi. Only Lumi needs to be upgraded beyond 4*. JC used to be good for he can reach IX at lvl60. But his final piece of IX, however, sit at lvl 73, which rendered him useless after the raise of the ceiling to lvl 70.
Personally I like to balance my team sheets and thus have not yet owned a single 7* toon. Thus after I got my Sid, I turn to Ventress and then 88 for 4*s. Both of them proved to be somewhat useful in GWs, esp Ventress who can dispel the advantages of Phasma. Neither of them, however, are useful for pvp. Therefore currently I am finally aiming to 7* sid, but after that I want to get Ackbar.
As my light side mission needs more good folks, I am currently working on Rey from missions, Poe from Cantina shipments, and Finn from Cantina fights. After that I plan to star Geo Soldier up as high as I can. Dooku also seems appealing against the AOE/phasma/Jedi teams, esp before lvl 60 when everyone has got 6/7 star folks.
Some real suggestions finally:
1. Do all challenges. Even if you have 100 pieces of some material, they can be quickly used up, esp after lvl 60.
2. Try to complete arena from 5 to 6pm Eastern time as the rewards (and ranks) are delivered at 6pm sharp.
As many posts have commented, my understanding of this is based on my own experience. An updated explanation is found at post #10, where Stormy says "The arena time is different for each person on the server. That is why some people battle hard during your 7PM EST, your 8pm EST, and your 9pm EST- because for them and the people also living on the same time zone as them, they are battling that 6pm reward. Even though you all have different time zone rewards, you are in ONE server. My time zone is recognized by my initial Game Centers set up, and can not be changed (unless calling into Apple Support maybe?) Hope some of this helps clarify even better. I don't think it was explained like this yet."
3. Don't believe in everything you have read in this forum, including mine. Even if an OP has acquired, and geared/stared up all of the toons he makes comments on, chances that he is 100% correct are still low. In addition, most of the posts, such as the GW strategies, are significantly influenced by version of the game at a certain historical moment (such as the status of JC), and thus could be rendered obsolete due to new updates.
4. Personally, I feel that having a good team is better than having a star player in pvp arenas. Therefore I tend to balance the growth of stars/gear of my toons. Currently I am facing the choice between upgearing Lumi or Poggle once they reach lvl 65, when a piece of gear needs 40 pieces of the most needed purple item. Due to the fact that my Lumi has lower hp, I will upgrade her first.
5. Don't just work on the stars, toons etc, and forget to have fun (or do your real work)!
PS. I feel there are some good guides that I have benefited from. Below is a quick reference list in random order. There are also some much older posts by soft launch folks such as Slushie, WhipiT, SeroZero and others whose names I can't immediately think of.https://forums.galaxy-of-heroes.starwars.ea.com/discussion/5114/dealing-with-dooku-a-guide-for-the-perpetually-annoyed#latesthttps://forums.galaxy-of-heroes.starwars.ea.com/discussion/5069/a-team-instinct-special-speed-and-you/p1https://forums.galaxy-of-heroes.starwars.ea.com/discussion/5106/swgohcantina-guides#latesthttps://forums.galaxy-of-heroes.starwars.ea.com/discussion/7284/possibly-the-current-best-character-description-is-good-answer-sheethttps://forums.galaxy-of-heroes.starwars.ea.com/discussion/6042/spenders-vs-free-to-play#latest
update on Jan. 27
In my reply to another thread, I estimated the calculation of the dev on a turn. I think it will benefit the wider community if I repost it here.
1. I noticed that when I use QGJ's assistance special on Dooku, who counters and stuns both Jedis attackers, QGJ will recover immediately after this turn. But the Jedi ally called upon will remain stunned. Thus the mechanism must be that after each "action phase" of a toon, there is an "ending phase" when a hero recovers from the stun.
2. Similarly, as we have seen in Lumi's and Barriss' leader skills, there is also a "starting phase" when passive healing and HOT are applied. If a character is stunned, he/she will miss the "action phase", but not the "starting phase" or the "ending phase" when he/she recover from the stun. I believe the dispel ability of Barriss is categorized into "starting phase" abilities.
3. As we have all experienced, when Sid applies heal immunity, the clearing of this effect, like stun, happen after a character's action, thus in the "ending phase". But DOT and Taunt is clearly removed during the starting phase.
To conclude, I think a turn is composed of
a. "starting phase" that applies effects such as HOT, DOT, Taunt, stun (which will force a character to skip "action phase"), and passive abilities such as dispel, invisibility, etc. The turns of those effects, except for stun, is also cleared here.
b. "action phase", when AI or player cast active abilities.
c. "ending phase", when abilities cds, and the turns of effects such as healing immunities, buff/debuff, and stuns are cleared.
ps. Dev are not really clear how to define buff and debuff, as witnessed by the chaotic performance by Ventress and Ackbar who can dispel dot but not attack down.
Update on Jan. 28 concerning the new GW
According to what I have read from others who have difficulty in finishing GW, most of them have an unbalanced squad, in terms of stars. I, however, even at lvl 65, and have 3 6*, 1 5* and 1 4* in my arena team, and a 3 6*, 3 5* inventory, always face opponents in GW from lvl 50s with 4* from battle 1. The most difficult battles I usually face are in 8-11, when my opponents at lvl 62-4 have 6 star characters. This is managable as long as I put some suicide squad with more than 5k health (to absorb AOE, taunt and other specials).
Therefore, I suggest not to up star one character as so many other players have done, but acquiring a larger reservoir of toons as I have done, which I think will have the best GW results under current game version. Since GW gets you 1200 tokens (15 shards) if you complete it, it remains the single most effective place to farm toons, including good ones such as Lumi, Poggle, Phasma, 86, and arguably Dathcha and Resistant Pilot.
Update on March 10
The new speed mechanism is available here.https://forums.galaxy-of-heroes.starwars.ea.com/discussion/11344/new-speed-ratings/p1