ML 5* AOE DPS situation and thoughts about player decision making. 
- 2020.03.23 18:36 (UTC+0)
I recently noticed the call for a certain self reviving DPS hero to lose his one debuff as it is rage inducing for many. I have no comment on the particular hero; I see his one debuff as a defensive tool to help ensure he gets more turns.
What I will talk about is why heroes, particularly AoE dps heroes, with much stronger forms of hard control are not seeing play?
I don't understand what the self reviving DPS hero's effectiveness must be for people to find his one debuff annoying, but this complaint existing makes moot the argument that high effectiveness is necessary to use other universal DPS heroes with stronger debuffs.
Heroes in particular that I'm referring to are actually the two nerfed DPS heroes that were cancer a year ago : Sage Baal and Silver Ara.
Yes, there is stigma around the two of them because no one likes the idea or feeling of using a hero that was nerfed. This is an aside to the fact that both the light units were nerfed in conjunction with a certain self reviving DPS hero. SC did this with the perspective that these changes would balance these heroes. I personally feel they got it right.
What? Nonsense you say? let's talk about it.
a 3 man team of Basar, Tywin, and universal Aoe Cleave (self reviving DPS hero, Sage Baal, or Silver Ara) might be more effective with one of the latter two. Let's give these universal AoE Cleave the same stats of 3.5K attack, 225 Crit D, and 9k hp. I use and love https://maphe.github.io/e7-damage-calc/ as a reference. This reference helps eliminate the question of if a hero is worth building DPS on and what numbers you can expect compared to other heroes.
Before jumping into it, self reviving DPS hero has 1283 base attack fully awakened. Silver Ara has 1197. Sage Baal has 1039. There is a 250 attack Difference between the highest and lowest hero, meaning Sage baal will need gear subs that offers 20-25% more attack to reach the same stat as the leading self reviving DPS hero, Silver Ara needs 8-10% more.
Using my reference against a target with 1400 def (the goal defense for most SW's and Basars/Alots) and def break/attack up from Tywin :
Self reviving DPS hero initial cleave: 11.8k s3, 14.6k s3 soulburned
-Comes with: Blind debuff, Revive+100 cr if dies.
Sage Baal initial cleave: 10.1k s2, 14.3k s3 (ST full hp)
-Comes with: Sleep debuff, One Dispell, Full healing on s3, CR boosting if cut off.
Silver Ara initial cleave: 10.7k s3, 4.1k burn
-Comes with: Stun debuff, Burn debuff
These are numbers calculated without considering individual artifacts. I think it is appropriate to acknowledge that a certain self reviving DPS hero uses either MLDB (no damage change) or Alexa's Basket. Sage Baal uses Etica's (no damage change), Time Matter, or Kal'adra. Silver Ara uses Abbysal (, Etica's, or Kal'adra. Assuming these are all maxed, damage changes are:
Self reviving DPS hero w/ Alexa's attack greater proc initial cleave: 13.7k s3, 17k s3 soulburned
Sage Baal w/ Kal'adra initial cleave: 13.2k s2, 18.6k s3 (ST full hp)
Silver Ara w/ Kal'adra initial cleave: 14k s3, 4.1k burn
Summary: The current Silver Ara has the ability to out damage a certain self reviving DPS hero's soul burn damage by thousands when landing both her burns. when landing one, it's about even in favor of S.ara still. same for the no burn or soulburn numbers. In regards to utility, a Hard stun is infinitely more useful than a blind, but the certain hero's blind has the two turn effect going for it if the enemy doesn't have a cleanser. I shudder to think about how broken she would be if she still had 3 burns. (Flashback to a time when people were rightfully complaining about S.ara damage and control ability: https://page.onstove.com/epicseven/global/view/3121628.)
The current Sage Baal has a far better ST cleave than the other two as it serves as a defensive/healing tool. For reference, if SBS gets cut off before his turn and drops to 50% hp (of 9k), the s3 deals 22.6k. SBS's AoE s2 damage capabilities cannot out damage the other two but the minimum is easily comparable. In regards to utility, The safety net of not needing Basar to open every matchup is nice/ A.lots is a good alternative if the opponent isn't carrying fcc. Sleep is better than blind, IMO, but not better than stun. SBS cutting, mass dispelling and Cleave aoe sleeping every two-three turns (Etica's, T.Matter, A.lots) is still possible, but not in such an oppressive form as it used to be. (Flashback to a time when people were rightfully complaining about SBS control https://page.onstove.com/epicseven/global/view/3180875. Funny fact here is no one was building damage on him at the time, only HP. His damage wasn't touched at all with the nerf.)
Thanks for taking the time to read this guys. I hope this will open some eyes and let people feel okay to use different cleavers.
TLDR: I think if one debuff is pushing a certain self reviving DPS hero to being over the top for some players, heroes with similar cleave abilities and stronger control/defensive options should also be getting some play. All three heroes have comparable Dmg and each excels at different moments in a battle, so I'm not sure why S.ara and SBS arent getting more attention. Again, NONE of these heroes lack the ability to cleave.
Is it because SBS is unpleasant thematically? do they both have too much negative stigma? Where do F.idica, A.Twyin, and FCc stand in the middle of all this?
Find out in the next episode of SC's Epic 7.
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