Recently I was asked on Twitter if there were any circumstances where a 5 star should be ranked over a 6 star.
That’s a really great question, and has important implications for overall roster construction. To answer the question, yes, I think there are multiple times when a 5 star should be ranked over a 6 star. To be clear, I’m not saying don’t rank your 6 stars at all. I’ve ranked-up a couple, and I’m sure I will rank more. But simply having an extra star doesn’t make a champion the best choice for your roster and progression. So let’s look at 5 reasons why investing in a 5 star is better than investing in a 6 star.
The first reason is that you have a 5 star champion that is more useful than any of your 6 star champs. If you have a 5 star Captain Marvel Movie, and your best 6 star is a Yellowjacket, you’ll get much more game-play out of a 5/65 Captain Marvel Movie than a Rank 2 Yellowjacket. Don’t get too excited just cause 6 star champions have an extra star. It’s the combination of damage, utility, potential content the champion can complete, and your overall enjoyment of playing the champion that you should be looking at.
Signature Ability & Level
What if you’ve got a 5 star and a 6 star of the same champion? Then it’s a no-brainer right? Not so fast. It’s still extremely hard to awaken a 6 star champion, and nearly impossible to bring a 6 star to Signature Level 200, unless you’re willing to spend an extreme amount of money on featured Cavalier crystals.
Champions like Void, Namor, Omega Red, Aegon, Captain America Infinity War, and Darkhawk need to be at max Signature Level for you to get the most out of them. So take into account how important the awakened ability is for the champion, and if scaling the Signature Level is critical to the champion’s utility. If it is critical to the champion’s value, you’re likely going to want to go with the 5 star version.
This goes hand-in-hand with the Signature Level. I know we’re all excited by the prestige of Rank 3 6 star champions, but those aren’t attainable for the vast majority of Summoners. Even Rank 2 6 Stars need multiple dupes to start to impact the prestige of veteran players. For example, a 6 star Rank 2 Sunspot at Sig 60 (meaning you’ve pulled him 4 times!) is only 10,429. High prestige 5 star champions are 10,600+, and you actually have some access to 5 star Signature Stones.
If you’re not at the absolute endgame, you’re still going to be getting your prestige from 5 star champions for the foreseeable future. For progressing players, I would strongly consider waiting to Rank 2 a 6 star until you have at least 5 awakened 5 star 5/65 champions, unless you have one of the handful of top tier champions as a 6 star star. This will help your prestige and get you better Alliance Quest rewards, allowing you to rank more champions quickly. Now if you pull a Corvus, Captain Marvel Movie, Domino, Sunspot, Warlock, or Ghost as your first 6 star, I can see making an exception. But it’s a short list considering there are 170+ champs playable in game right now.
One feature you may not be aware of is that the natural power gain of champions is influenced by the champion’s rank. The higher the rank, the faster the power gain. So while a 5 star 5/65 champion and a 6 star Rank 2 have roughly equivalent stats, they gain power at different rates, with the 5 star having the advantage.
Resource Limitations/Increased Roster Depth
It can’t be overlooked that a Rank 2 6 star champion costs three Tier 5 Basics, while a 5/65 5 star only costs two. If you move too quickly to 6 star champions, you’re going to be holding back your roster depth, because you can have three max 5 stars for every two Rank 2 6 star champions. With the need for greater roster depth in Act 6 (and likely Book 2), having a roster of “pinch-hitter” champions is becoming more and more important. It’s a lot easier to build roster depth with 5 star champions because the rank-up cost is substantially less.
So there you have it, 5 reasons why you should rank a 5 star champion instead of a 6 star champion. I hope you found this helpful when considering your rank-up decisions.