Way of the Force Set Review - Blue Hero

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A NOTE ON CARD RATINGS:
The card ratings are mostly created in a vacuum and for Standard Format exclusively. Some cards are much better in Trilogy Format, and notes are sometimes made of this, but the set is reviewed from the point of view of Standard Format play.

It is always going to be difficult to adequately rate a card, and all the ratings are obviously going to be subjective, although we have tried to proximate an objective rating. The rating system is 1-5, with 1 being the rating of a card that will rarely see play and 5 a card that will become a staple in many decks and will most likely feature heavily in competitive play.

The cards with medals are the 3 stand out cards of that faction and color in the set.

There are links to all the other parts of the set review at the end of this article!

1. BLUE HERO CARDS:
I really feel that Blue Heroes have benefited tremendously from the Way of the Force expansion. There are so many powerful cards here. Maybe even two of the stand-out cards of the set. It will be encouraging for anyone who like the force users, but discouraging to players who had hoped to see the rise of power of blue heroes in the late Legacies meta stifled. It doesn't look like they are going to slow down.

2. BLUE HERO CHARACTERS:

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EZRA BRIDGER (3/5)
It feels a bit premature to say whether or not Ezra Bridger2 will have what it takes to fill out the role as a full blooded support character in either a monoblue deck or a blue/yellow deck. The void left by the nerfed, but still very much playable, Aayla Secura are some pretty big shoes to fill though. There's been talk about Ezra pairing up with Obi-Wan Kenobi for a new monoblue aggro deck, and while I understand the urge to add more melee sides in the mix, I believe those people are missing the main point of Obi/Maz, namely speed, access to yellow mitigation and those unbelievable Hyperspace Jump plays. His power action though is incredible, whether or not he'll survive long enough to use the Power Action more than once remains to be seen.

JEDI SENTINEL (1/5)
Even with the Special representing 2 damage, in rare instances 3, the Jedi Sentinel is still doomed to forever rest and eventually die in your binder. 10hp is nice, but 2 Melee damage for 1 resource? Not on my watch. For 1 more point you get a 2 dice Ezra Bridger or a single die Plo Koon!B Char2 herojpg
LUKE SKYWALKER (5/5)
Blue heroes might have been screwed over with the Jedi Sentinel, and therefor a (usable) non-unique character in this set, but boy did they get rewarded with maybe the best character of the set, unless you are rooting for villains, in which case you might put your vote in for Snoke as the MVP of the set. Old Man Luke though really pushes the limit! Because of his special ability, his die sides are effectively either one of the best defensive dice in the game or offensively better than that of Kylo Ren. It's not an overstatement to put Luke at the pinnacle of the the Way of the Force expansion. On top of that he boasts a Power Action that can move blue abilities around, including Force Illusions and Force Speeds if that's what makes you tick!

There are so many possibilities with Luke Skywalker, and he'll work phenomenally well with Rey2, Aayla or Kanan and Fortify, and the list just goes on and on.

PLO KOON (3/5)
I'd like to give Plo Koon a higher rating, and somehow I think that we will be revisiting him and change his rating later, but as much as he was hyped in the early part of the spoiler phase, I'm starting to get cold feet as to whether the Plo Koon/Padawan/Padawan, that can potentially drop 2-3 weapons round 1, has the stamina to fight it out with the big guns.

In theory it sounds really good, but with 8 weapons in the deck you'd be at just 40% to draw 2 weapons in your initial draw, 82% to draw 1 and if you were to draw 1, drop 4 cards to see if you draw the second weapon you would be at 69% to draw minimum 1 more weapon.

I have absolutely no doubt that we'll be seeing Plo Koon, and he'll also be competitive, and hopefully he's going to make the 3 wide blue hero option more popular, whether or not he'll be as strong as the early hype suggested is a different matter.

3. BLUE HERO EVENTS:
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FOND MEMORIES (2/5)
When blue hero players saw this card they probably thought of all the havoc it would wreck for Sabine players everywhere. Well ... it turns out FFG can wreck more havoc than your Fond Memories. The obvious use of this card is to stop recycling of cards from the discard pile, whether it be Second Chance, Honor Guard, Suppressive Fire or now with the resurgence of Rebel (mostly because of the popularity of Cassian Andor, and I'm calling that one right here: He'll be here, there and everywhere) any kind of mitigation - yes, Easy pickings, looking at you! I'm not really sure this card will see much play though. Another interesting feature is the interaction of the card with Luke's Training, where you recycle Force Illusions and bring back cards that was used to block damage. Probably not the best use of the card though. Main problem is, that with an increasingly larger card pool of higher quality, what card would you remove to make space for this one?

LOTH-WOLF BOND (3/5)
Another card that made Rey2/Aayla players swoon when the sky really was the limit for that deck. The deck is obviously not dead, not by a long-shot, but it's definitely lost some of its momentum. It hasn't really changed anything in terms of power level of this card, it's still great in monoblue hero decks and will definitely be an aggressive addition to both Luke3/Rey2, 3 wide Plo Koon and others. If you do decide to go Obi/Ezra2, Loth-Wolf Bond could be exactly what you need to bring some speed back into the deck. And 3 shields on activation with Obi-Wan Kenobi is not bad at all! If you play the same bag of tricks with Obi/Ezra2 as in the old Obi/Maz, then you could even Swiftness into Loth-Wolf Bond and deal a devastating 10 damage without a single upgrade (there's of course only 0,08% chance of that, but who counts).

LUKE'S TRAINING (3/5)
Luke's Training is good! It's essentially Rearm for Blue Ability Upgrades. The spot requirement should be easy to fulfill, and while you do use a card to play the ability upgrade, you also get a discount of 1 resource and are able to play it from your discard pile. The benefit of not having to sit around with your Force Illusion until you can play it or need it, or recycle it from the discard pile after use is just amazing. You'll probably not want to recycle too many Force Illusions though as your deck will be depleted at an alarming speed.B events2 herojpg
PACIFY (3/5)
This is an interesting card that can do two things that are both powerful. 1). It can be played defensively to remove one of your own character die to give that character 2 shields (which is then essentially mitigating a die showing 2 damage), or it can 2). Be used to remove an opponent's character die and give that character 2 shields, which is not bad if you play a mill or control deck, or that removing that die would prevent lethal damage. I think this will be a favorite card in plenty of decks, including Blue/Red mill variants.

PROPEL (3/5)
At first glance Propel is really all over the place, but its cost is a redeeming feature, and paying 2 resources to soft mitigate a character die, an upgrade die AND/OR a support die is quite cool. It's along the lines of Alter, with the exception that it hits wider (3 dice vs. 2 dice), but is limited in which dice it can target. As with Alter you can combine both your own and your opponent's dice, either use it for soft mitigation or enable your own dice. I like it, and it can definitely set up some great plays, and just adds to the arsenal of Blue heroes alteration cards, such as aforementioned Alter, Concentrate, etc.B events3 herojpg
RENEWNED PURPOSE (2/5)
The Ancestral Recall for Destiny, although it'll never be a real power card. The ability to draw cards is an important feature in Star Wars Destiny, and it is what makes cards like Dark Counsel and Promotion so powerful, but those cards also come with a die. Renewed Purpose just allows you to draw cards, and I'm not sure that there are enough Blue hero decks out there that really benefits enough from it to mandate the use of the 1 resource.

STEADFAST (3/5)
Steadfast is essentially a better version of Willpower because it doesn't require your character to be exhausted, and if played in round 1 (or before you have cards in your discard pile), it can potentially be a huge 4 damage swing in your favor. This card could become a real backbreaker in 3 wide blue hero decks or even in blue middle/middle decks such as Rey2/Aayla or Luke3/Rey2. Previously blue heroes were very dependent on the performance of their own dice to mitigate their opponent's dice (i.e. Guard, Force Misdirection, etc.), but Steadfast opens up for a whole new avenue of plays, which used to require the mix with red cards, i.e. Field Medic, to facilitate, and paying 1 resource to move 2 damage from a damaged character is quite a good investment.

4. BLUE HERO SUPPORT:
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PLO KOON'S STARFIGHTER (2/5)
The ability of Plo Koon's Starfighter is really cool, potentially turning a die to a damage side or coupled with a Force Speed to a Focus side to resolve big chunks of unmitigable damage, but blue rarely sports good vehicles, that would fit straight into support decks, and I'm afraid this is another one of them. You'll probably end up seeing the Starfighter in some decks, but most likely out of the lack of options rather than it being a good choice. The die is actually pretty miserable for a 3 cost vehicle, i.e. compared to a Fang Fighter, and following the nerf to Aayla, the standard rainbow hero vehicle deck is going to be revamped, and the Starfighter is not going to be at the forefront.

5. BLUE HERO UPGRADES:
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A99 AQUATA BREATHER (2/5)
Being able to block damage is nice, consistently every round is even nicer and to be able to do so for free is well ... the nicest? But it's just Indirect damage and it's just 1 Indirect damage once per round. Since blue heroes more than most decks are reliant on their upgrades to put in work for them to facilitate their win condition, this card is obviously thought of as your fourth upgrade with an Honed Skills in play. It's a nifty utility card, but I guess it will only see limited play if any. Could be great in Trilogy Format though!

EZRA BRIDGER'S LIGHTSABER (3/5)
A 2 cost blue upgrade with redeploy. Finally! Ezra Bridger's Lightsaber is essentially a mini Handcrafted Lightbow, and the biggest downside to this upgrade is its mixed damage sides. That was fine with the Lightbow because it effectively sported (at least 2/2/3/-/-/- damage), while the powerlevel of Ezra's Lightsaber is significantly lower. On Ezra Bridger though the Special is bonkers and the saber would have a rating of (4/5). Dealing damage AND make you opponent lose a resource (even if you don't steal it as we have become accustomed to with yellow Ezra): GREAT! I still like the lightsaber though, mostly because it can be played round 1, is redeployable and therefore extremely usable in 3 wide decks and the die as we are used to with blue upgrades have 5 die sides you'd actually want to resolve, and can also help enable stable blue cards like Guard, Force Misdirection, Synchronicity, etc.

GUARDIAN OF THE WHILLS (1/5)
This card is designed for either monoblue or blue/red decks. For monoblue decks it is 1 shield per round and for blue/red decks it's 1 shield/indirect then vice versa. There are a lot of good alternatives for blue heroes to gain shields at the pace of 1/action, i.e. Yoda's Hut, Luke's Protection (which is free), etc., and I don't think the 1 Indirect damage when moved to a red character is worth it.I'm not even sure I would have played this upgrade if it was free. For effects like this it's a huge advantage that the source is a Support rather than an Upgrade (because the former is not discarded when a character dies).
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LUKE SKYWALKER'S LIGHTNING ROD (5/5)
This upgrade is one of the revelations of the Way of the Force expansion. Even when it is not attached to Luke Skywalker it is still one of the best 2 cost upgrades in the game for blue heroes. This point is important to underscore though! It's an Upgrade - Equipment so it won't trigger other weapon effects such as the Shoto Lightsaber, although it can still be used with Guard, but regardless it is still a "weapon" to die for. 3 base damage sides is just nuts. Attached to Luke Skywalker it is just out of this world rivaling any other upgrade in the game. It might even be the best around!

THERE IS NO TRY (2/5)
The Action of There is No Try is really good, mimicking the effect of Do or Do Not, but is betrayed by a poor die. With the two best sides being paysides if feels as if you are paying too much for the potential effect of the Action. I do like the Focus side though. Focuses on dice are generally speaking hard to come by for blue heroes outside of characters, so there might be some utility there. I'd never play this upgrade over a Shoto Lightsaber, Luke Skywalker's Lightning Rod or Ancient Lightsaber. It's an Upgrade Ability, so can be used with Luke's Training and also be moved with Luke Skywalker's ability, which might something worth considering.
BLUE VILLAIN REVIEW
RED VILLAIN REVIEW
YELLOW VILLAIN REVIEW

RED HERO REVIEW
YELLOW HERO REVIEW
BLUE NEUTRAL REVIEW
RED NEUTRAL REVIEW
YELLOW NEUTRAL REVIEW
GREY CARDS REVIEW

Written by
CLAUS STAAL