Gamepress Tier List(A really long take)

Firstly, it’s my first time posting something like this. So if there’s been a wrong tag placed, or some other issue, pls let me know, I’ll fix it, or if you’d like, take down the post for better framing. I just wanted to start a conversation about, yes, the much discussed tier list.

And I’m not talking about the updated one. I’m talking about gamepress tier lists in general. My question is: Why do these tier lists exist? In 2020 that too. The objective of these lists was, I assume, to help the community by giving advice on how a servant is useful, as well as how useful they are. But… I just see anarchy. There’s been no clear criteria placed for these lists. Like, yknow how the five star one was updated? Well, I have my take on how it’s kinda misleading, but I don’t want to give my opinions on the mistakes they have made. I’d rather ask, why can’t they decide what they want to achieve?

This game is 98% farming. A lot of people focus on story, and that’s their decision, perfectly fine. But for newbies, won’t they think “Oh, I need to raise my own characters, story is hard” when they see stuff like survival, heals considered in these tier lists? Many people have proven that with a friend support, you can clear everything except Shimosa, and one or two cqs per year. Even Lostbelt 2, can be cleared with little investment. So, in light of this, wouldn’t it be a better idea to make a farming focused list, since story is a joke, and farming servants actually make mat farming for your waifus easier? This presents a definite qol instead of, say, Hercules, who is supposed to be an OP servant by tier lists, yet isn’t needed in your account. You can clear everything with solos, which is a new player experience that saves you from grinding inefficient nodes for a year like day one players. Don’t have friend solos? There’s many threads for this, on reddit, discord etc.

But instead of this, Gamepress focuses on story nodes, and tries to somehow incorporate farming WITH those criteria? I do not understand what purpose it serves anyone, to be told that “Kiara is tier 6,even tho people can use her for clearing wave 1 and 2 of Cavalry nodes, which saves charge for your wave 3 dps”. Veterans are already set in their styles, but newer players might get affected by this and assume a view of the game that isn’t accurate. Why not just remove tier lists from the site until they decide
“Yosh, we’re gonna base this on farming/survival/usage statistics/height/any SINGLE criteria”? Or, make different tier lists for what people are trying to do?

There’s an argument that GP tier lists were never a Bible, but considering the amount of people who roll for ineffective/niche servants due to them, I don’t think such lists should exist, at least in its current state. I love Meliran and Kelly Senpais and their helpful event guides, but aside from that, GP isn’t my first source of info, nor my second. This platform is becoming a meme due to those lists, if it already wasn’t. Maybe they can take them down, update them entirely according to a single unambiguous playstyle/criteria, and then re-upload them?

11 Likes

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

There really are too many Servants and with disparate niches to easily measure them with the same stick. I used to be more onboard with GP’s practice of keeping everyone in the same bucket for the sake of simplicity, but it’s clearly no longer anything close to simple. In Kiara’s example, we rate an apple poorly because it isn’t an orange.

Tiers are inevitable; readers expect them and will create their own. What GP needs is to reorganize Servants within their most favorable niches a la Appmedia (not necessarily the exact same 3 categories, but along those lines) and apply consistent logic when evaluating each Servant within those categories against its peers within those same categories.

4 Likes

There really is no fun steamrolling through all the singularities with a borrowed Level 100 support. Most people prefer an actual challenge and will take the story support for every fight

Therefore, only taking the farming abilities of servants into account for tier list won’t help newer players who are trying to strengthen their roster
I’d prefer just separating the tier list for farming and for general content

7 Likes

I have to stop you right there because that is either an incomplete or a false statement. If you go with “98% of my way of playing the game is farming.” or “Farming has the potential to occupy 98% of your time if you play this game.”, then I’m with you.

Most games today, FGO as well, have different ways to get your interest. There are the ones who want the most optimized playstyle, some play it for the story, some for the characters and so on. Think of all the big open world games today who offer you to build the game’s economy or simply play mini games.

As such, I feel that a tier list should, in general, represent and respect those ways of playing as well, since ultimately people will ask and argue about them. However, they should also make it transparent what eventually led to the decision of putting a servant in a specific tier, because otherwise there will be a backlash when people assume an explanation which may or may not be correct or coherent.

I think that since there’s a desire from players to see what servant is “better” there’s always a necessity for proper tier lists who rate servants according to specific criteria. However, focusing on only a single criteria (farming efficiency) is bound to lock players out of the list, losing interest in it and looking for another list according to their own criteria.

As such, I always thought that Gamepress did a really amazing job with their lengthy explanations and descriptions. I’m not really surprised to see the reworked tier list getting a lot of bad feedback since it’s lacking precisely what was (in my opinion) a major point in favor of the site - transparency.

I think that as long as they stick to that kind of transparency they’ll appeal to a broad audience which in turn will enable healthy and diverse discussions like this one. So, in my opinion, they should definitely be more transparent about the criteria they use for ranking servants, but absolutely not focus on only farming efficiency.

9 Likes

There is no mini games or side activities in FGO. Doesnt matter what is your reason to play, be it story or characters or smth else. You still need to farm.

10 Likes

I completely agree.

That was really long.

8 Likes

You can listen to the soundtrack, read up on the lore of CEs and servants, go through the story or events again through your room.

You do not, I repeat, you absolutely do not have to farm if you do not want to. It’s just a completely different way of playing this game. You’ll probably never max your servants that way, but nothing really forces you to repeatedly farm any node.

Nothing really forces you to log on in the first place.

You absolutely do need to farm in this game otherwise you can’t obtain welfares or complete other event activities.

To me, ideally as a method for discussion, and perhaps in light of notably worthwhile Servant upgrades, neither of which are unfair. Arash and Spartacus getting 30% charge buffs was huge, and a reason for ‘moving’ them up anywhere; Merlin helped Buster units explode even more while providing a powerful sustain (especially if paired with Jeanne if your focus is on survival and why I think Jeanne/Merlin is the strongest defensive core, but I digress); Skadi helps Quick units explode, and appropriately benefits every prior Quick unit in a way unlike prior supports; Reines’ buff is legitimately so powerful as to dramatically change one’s approach to team-building. And on. This isn’t even about Skadi so much as the fact that the game doesn’t stay fixed in time and I don’t think changes reflecting that are inherently silly, no less when it’s not going to be uniform (every Q unit appreciates Skadi but she doesn’t make every single one god tier).

They have a criteria. Having criteria you disagree with or thinking they mismanaged Skadi’s explosion is not the same thing as not having criteria, fundamentally, of which you can disagree with on your own terms (and I in fact do but am not getting into that):

Finally, while it is true that no 5 Star Servants are created equal, they do, at the end of the day, have insane stats compared to the lower rarity Servants. Thus, all of them are worth raising eventually as long as players have the resources.

While we still intend to write a larger interpretation of our tier list, here is a short overview of what we actually look at when ranking our servants:

Servant niche

Competition within niche

Challenge Quest performance

Servant value for farming

Sustained damage and burst damage performance

Statistics (attack/HP/generation, etc.)

Support capability and utility

Depending on who you ask - but really wide swathes of people - every single tier list ever is a meme, and depending on how far they’re willing to go, have zero to negative value whatsoever. I.e., people already considered it a meme since even before I joined GP.

(Side note, incidentally related: I don’t think tiering is inherently bad, actually. Even post-Skadi, it’s an absolute joke if you think e.g. Yan Qing can DPS as well as Saberfran, or Diarmuid (Saber), or Atalante (Alter). Not everyone is created equal and even those with strikingly similar kits may have one who slightly edges the other out (be it no matter the circumstances, or depending on the ideally clearly articulated and consistently followed by the maker’s standards), such as with Parvati hitting harder on the crucial W3 and more. Just because almost every Servant is worthwhile doesn’t mean they’re equal, that would be farcical. GP’s issue is consistency and, as I’ve wanted for a long time, separating not in a huge group but by purpose within rarities.)

5 Likes

God that Kiara Move hurts what the hell man.
One of the few Servants who get 50% battery and on top of that Art resistance decrease and being placed with Scheherazade.

2 Likes

Not exactly the sort of take I’d take on this whole tier list thing, heh.

Let me ask you this: How many times do you see people posting on here asking who I should use for farming? As opposed to how do I beat Camelot?

Honako, for instance, prefaces his movie-length tier lists by saying he doesn’t even see the point of farming tier lists, and I somewhat agree. Isn’t basically everyone a farmer as long as they have AOE NPs? You could stick a superscope (just saying) on any AOE and bam… instant wave clear. Oh, they have a battery? I guess that makes them A-tier! Or S-tier if it’s 50%! I mean even Cha Cha has seen lottery usage on min-turn budget teams, and she’s considered a D-tier servant on most people’s lists. Does this make ST servants automatically F-tier?

Or maybe you want to loop… Well, GP posted a looping tier list, and there are plenty of looping charts in this regard. Though looping isn’t so much of an opinion, but a problem of math and NP refunding.

You could say the same thing for farming as a whole. It’s just a math problem of NP damage and battery + existing CEs. There’s not much opinion involved on this, hence no real reason for an involved tier list.

At the end of the day pretty much everyone can farm – it’s only a matter of turns. And in that regard, automated scripts are the most efficient. I guess that makes automation the true EX-tier.

7 Likes

I disagree.

And even if it was 98% farming, Mario is 98% gumba stomping. Doesn’t keep Bowser from being a major focus.

And many people have also had the exact opposite experience and gotten stuck in areas like Camelot. Just because it is possible means that it will happen.

AND some people actually try and play the game rather than hunting down a Bonded Herc and facerolling.

Even less investment is needed to clear embers or doors.

The list is already too Farming focused as it is. And I disagree the story is a joke.

You can clear all farming nodes with solos also.

They don’t focus on story nodes.

This is what I think they need to do.


Despite being quite critical with their latests change I do appreciate they spend a huge amount of time and effort to make these guides and lists to help people. I just want them to seperate their lists by role (CQ, Farming, Support) and to determine who these guides are targeted to and have a consistent philosophy in their choices.

9 Likes

That is missing the point now, isn’t it? I was simply giving examples of things you can easily do without having to farm. I’m not saying that farming isn’t a big factor for the majority of people in here, but simply claiming that it’s important for everyone is clearly out of perspective.

Again, you can comfortably play through the entire story without even having participated in a single event (if you choose to do so). It is simply not true that you absolutely have to farm.

3 Likes

I mean… that’s a tad disingenuous. Even Honako and Lone Meteor had to grind up their Robin’s and David’s, and Leo’s and George’s, because you can’t 1/1/1 or 4/4/4 everything in this game at that end unless you feel like eating shiny rocks or getting rid of your sweet tat.

I don’t disagree with thinking something as broad as GP’s list should be holistic and thorough no matter the angling, nor in principle that just because for most people farming is a simple fact of life and something that happens all the time that ‘challenging content’* is worth disregarding from your approach, but having actually done ~F2P~ stuff for fun you can argue your not unreasonable point without exaggerations.

Ultimately though, to be a little cute about it, there’re two fundamental focuses in this thread, neither of which I in the end actually find very wrong or mutually exclusive, particularly when their hosts’ widely varying nature (i.e. the players themselves) exist independently of list this or list that:

  1. It’s not wrong to say you can get through a majority of the game with minimal investment poured into all of your Servants (you will ultimately need to raise some eventually due to forced supports if you want to you know keep up with the story, a la Euryale and Bedivere for LB2). From CQs, to a good 95% of boss fights and ‘bosses’ in nodes, you can absolutely just borrow the proper counter-class and clean house if you understand the mechanics well enough. It’s not with zero investment because that is factually untrue past Arc 1, but it’s definitely as modest as can be. If you disagree with regards to LB2, tell me how I can use Napoleon to beat someone who counter-classes him and not get absolutely wiped by painful basic cards without raising Euryale or Bedivere, thanks.

  2. If you play even semi-seriously, even excluding lotteries and raids, you will at some point farm because you are not going to take your 1/1/1 favorite to 10/10/10 at the drop of a hat when the non-Caster gem rates are trash, when some Servants can have such obscene mat requirements at every level - have you seen Benkei, either Diarmuid’s, or Heracles’? How else are you going to get your 100+ proofs or similar? - or even just 6/6/6 if you don’t want to go that far, since as it is those ask for gems too. Because strictly in terms of its very design this is made from the ground-up to be a grindfest, and in that avenue it succeeds… as every other mobage. FGO specifically (sadly) has nothing like AL/GFL/Kancolle where you can essentially mini-game up My Room and find ways to enjoy your favorites outside of either ‘farm’ or ‘boss fight’, the latter of which substantially filters back to the former.

If I may I think this is pretty much just two not-wrong opinions clashing and trying to make it to where the other is wrong when in a sense neither are just due to the very way this game is built. You don’t need the shiniest golds to do anything and they are always luxuries, you can beat this game without rolling the gacha, you can farm quite easily after like 3 months of play. I disagreed with OP earlier, but OP’s not wrong in a fair few other places, and so… I think GP dropped the ball having dipped my feet in a little bit here (just starting with no AOE/ST/Support classification, which IMO would also substantially clean up any tier-based messiness Skadi or not).

* Although it’s here that I mention what makes DSS grossly efficient also makes it with proper play and other units grossly powerful for the very same CQing or such. I even typed up a post on Kintoki (Rider) recently and frankly, he goes from busted to broken with even a single Skadi let alone two.

11 Likes

If your plan is to log for a week every few months, sure you do that.

I’ve seen this argument thrown about in other games ‘no one is forcing you to do it!’ well sure okay, but why bother playing the game if you aren’t actually going to play the game.

3 Likes

In a fighting game they exist to show the character that have the best matchups against the rest of the roster usually
Here in gamepress the tier list was easy to understand even if some servant were in tiers that they shouldn’t:
EX:is that basicly can work at his max everywhere because the two servants that are there work perfectly everywhere in every situation
A: works fine in every team, they may not work at his max un every moment but the can be put in any team and they help and can at lest do their jobs fine
B: was the may not be as universal as A but they are usually better then the A’s in their oun jobs.
C: they need a more focused team(focused in their jobs like farming,criting, niches or things like that) to work but they are pretty good in their job.
D: they are similar to C but they need or more help /effort or they are just outclassed but another servants that do the same job (example: Arjuna)
E: even harder the D and usually the servants here are kinda weak.
(This is how i understand the tier list of GP)
Was kinda decent in my opinión

You haven’t seen the Arknights tier lists have you? It’s the complete opposite of the FGO ones, in a equally bad way. It’s like we’re all part of a social experiment or something :stuck_out_tongue:

Hella logical fallacy coming through, guys.

You can’t put throw up a straw argument and prove it false :stuck_out_tongue:

Do you know what I see more?

“Should I roll for X?”

Tier lists are meant to answer that question from a gameplay POV, especially given limited constraints.

You ignored both of these concerns (“rolling” and “limited resources”).

This is just plain wrong. Damage benchmarks are important.

Chacha is bad because her damage isn’t enough for the majority of cases.

Nursery Rhyme and Eresh aren’t top-tier because their damage isn’t enough for the majority of cases.

And there’s utility.

Ozy doesn’t have an AOE NP but he still provides 20% and helps servants that rely on IP (like Cleopatra and Romulus) guarantee their buffs.

But a farming tier list would place him high because of what he enables. This is also why Merlin, Waver, Skadi, and Tamamo are rated highly even though a team consisting of only them would be nightmarish.

But this is assuming access to everything.

You’re not answering the question that I see mostly commonly: who should I roll for?

The other question you’re not answering: what is a farming tier list for?

Is it for:
• Free quests?
• Chaldea Gate quests?
• Clearing event nodes?
• Lotteries?
• Raids?

Because Chacha is a fantastic at knocking down hands and doors. She’s a free NP5 with a free 1.5x damage, has a small battery to make her more compatible with your favorite 50% f2p CEs, and you never have to rotate her out.

But Chacha is terrible at most lottery farming. And even when she’s an option (Da Vinci rerun) she’s outclassed by someone else.

What people expect from tier lists is: take all of these considerations and tell me, in the majority of the cases, how does this unit perform? Are they worth my time and attention and limited resources? Will they help me play the game more efficiently and easily?

6 Likes

I feel like tiering and tier lists are sort of inevitable at this point. A significant chunk of the gameplay discussions involve talking about how Servant A is better or worse then Servant B at handling a particular criteria and that itself is tiering. There are multiple discussion on which Quick Servant is better at looping with Skadi and lo and behold there’s tier list that tiers Servants based on the ease by which they can loop.

Aside from being inevitable, tier lists also have their use in showcasing which aspects of a Servant are useful or which aspects are in most demand. Like if a bunch of top tier Servants have X type of skill or is compatible with Servant Y, that can help players be on the lookout for any future Servants that also fit the criteria. The game is constantly changing and Servants are always being added so even the shift and changes in tiering can be helpful. Like how the introduction of break bars lowered the tiering of Servants with 1 turn burst damage and raised the tiering of Servants with sustained damage.

Also regarding the whole emphasis on farming thing. If somebody was trying to get me into the game and honestly told me that 98% of the game is farming, that would kill any interest I had in the game regardless of how good the story and characters are. Some amount of farming has to be done of course if you want to make progress at a decent rate, but I feel like a lot of people are overemphasizing the farming aspect of the game and letting that cloud the way they can enjoy the game. Aside from farming there’s still plenty stuff like Main Quests, Interludes, and Strenghtening Quests where you aren’t rushed or forced to complete the fight in the quickest or most efficient way possible. This over emphasizing on farming has also clouded the way people view Servants and I’ve seen a lot of discussions where people ignore aspects of a Servants and just focus on anything that can help them farm. Like when Odysseus came out and I saw a lot of people ignore his utility and shoehorn him into this farming role. Or any of those “How would you improve” types of discussions where people feel like the way to improve a Servant is to make them better at farming. Farming is a considerable part of the game but I feel like people are overemphasizing it to the point where they feel the need to treat every situation as farming and attempt to complete every situation as quickly and efficiently as possible even when the situation doesn’t demand or require it.

11 Likes

I didn’t disagree with any of those points for the most part. The problem is if you want to go into extreme depth and nuance into all these aspects you can write a thesis. But at the end of the day, like you say, farming is only a matter of hitting damage benchmarks… which is what I posited when I said it’s just a math problem of batteries and NP damage.

Obviously what you are farming, what sort of CEs and NP levels you have, make a world of difference in this regard. Like if it’s just embers or doors, most anyone can clear a wave with any sort of class advantage, wouldn’t you agree? It’s a very low bar to clear, which is why I made the simplistic example of slapping on a superscope and clearing a wave. That’s what I had in mind when I made that example… not lottery nodes which pop up twice a year, or raids.

I don’t have a problem with a separate farming list if that is what people desire. But to me farming lists are again just a matter of hitting benchmarks or providing battery, which is more a matter of math than a detailed analysis of the skillsets each servant provides and their interactions with each other beyond mere damage numbers.

Personally, I think the way AppMedia does it, with a three-fold breakdown by 1) Support, 2) AOE Noble Phantasm, and 3) ST Noble Phantasm is an excellent compromise, and I can’t off-hand think of anything better without exploding into too many different tier lists.

5 Likes