Star Wars: Destiny is a competitive game. There are few players who will show up to a Store Championship that would claim they are there just to have fun and see what happens. In a game where two players go head-to-head, one of them is going to lose. The desire to win is something that drives people to look at deck lists from people who win Store Championships, to build and run a deck that is finding success in the current Meta. But I would argue that there is more to learn from losing in Star Wars: Destiny than there is by winning.
Just Starting Out
I am a newer player to the Destiny scene. I got into the game in the end of May, and just within the last week have I finally been able to snag some booster packs to expand my collection. My collection started with both Starter Kits, a handful of commons and uncommons gifted from local players, and a few oversaturated Rares that they were willing to gift to me. So I came into the game knowing that any deck I built was going to be at an immediate disadvantage. I could build a Rey (AW38) deck, but I wouldn’t have those Vibroknives (SR57) and Holdout Blasters (AW63) to action cheat away. I could build a mono-red Trooper (AW2)/TIE Pilot (SR4) deck, but I didn’t have Endless Ranks (AW70) and Training (SR125). Unless I wanted to fork out a ton of cash to buy them individually, I knew I wouldn’t have access to some of those auto-include cards into a deck that an experienced player would throw into a deck.
As one would expect, I have lost far more games than I have won so far. Rather than lamenting my inferior position compared to these other players, I have come to embrace the losing side of Star Wars: Destiny. I’ve gone toe-to-toe with Emo Kids and lost in a close one and I’ve taken an Unkar Vehicle deck to the final rounds and just barely lost using an eJyn (SR44)/Rebel Commando (SR28) deck that didn’t have a single Second Chance (AW137), Lone Operative (SR49), or Con Artist (SR60). Those close losses stand out to me the most. Not because I think I should have won, but rather because my deck was able to take a more refined deck and push it to the limits. It helped me to see what cards work well, what ones turned out to be too situational, and which ones simply never saw a chance to play. It helped me understand the synergy between cards – and there are a ton of common and uncommon cards that have synergy in a deck to form a great foundation – which in turn helps me as I refine these decks and construct new ones. And it lets me see the value in cards that other players don’t include because they are busy stocking their deck with two of this shinier, fancier card.
These lessons are making me a better Destiny player overall. Rather than relying on what other people are playing and the cards they are putting in their decks, I’m able to fine-tune things based on my own experiences regarding the cards and the deck. I’m able to look at the cards out there in the pool and be selective in what ones I might seek to purchase. And then I get to test the deck again and discover the ramifications of those changes.
For instance, I just acquired two Second Chances and two Lone Operatives in a trade. Last night I was playing my deck and found that I suddenly don’t have the overabundance of resources that I encountered when my deck was mostly 0-1 cost Yellow Events. If the trend continues, I’ll need to find ways to get some resource generation such as adding in a second copy of Double-Dealing (SR117) or adding back in Outmaneuver (SR149) to gain resources when claiming (which I find my deck can do fairly consistently against most decks). It also indicates that my recent pull, Millennium Falcon (AW49), is probably not a good addition to the deck since it is a challenge to get the 5 resources and it would slow my deck down further. The Solo fanboy in me wanted to throw it in there, especially with that beautiful 3-discard side, but it isn’t likely to be a card that will get out very often and so it is likely to cycle out.
…Leads to Understanding
Losing has helped me to better understand the flow of the game, the value that event and support cards can provide, and helped to improve my decision-making in the game in order to be competitive. I have a long way to go before my collection can be able to construct a Tier-1 meta deck, but I’m having a lot of fun playing a combination and deck that most players would be quick to dismiss. I’m investing time and effort into finding a way to make my deck better, and in doing so there will be a level of satisfaction when this deck gets over that hump and starts to win some of those closer games. And maybe, just maybe, I’ll finally get a chance to defeat a Palpatine deck (I’m 0/6 against him across all my decks, and he is currently the bane of my Destiny existence!) But until then, I will continue to cherish the benefits gained through losing in Star Wars: Destiny.